Isabela smiled as a sigh escaped Aveline’s surprisingly, as she had found out earlier, soft lips when her nimble fingers danced across the freckles that dotted the warrior’s shoulders. Watching the red-orange hair spread over her pillow in the candlelight for a moment she felt it, that familiar mix of feelings that, when she least expected it to, would occasionally strike her like a fist in her gut. She could be watching a ship leave the harbor or see a hint of a sunset through the high buildings in the city and that mix – longing, regret, lust, jealousy – would flare up for a moment. Giving in to the least of her current temptations she planted a quick kiss on a freckle near Aveline’s neck before covering it with her thumb, laughing as the other woman weakly batted at the pirate straddling her back.
“I told you no funny business back there. Just do what you said you’d do and be done with it.”
“Just do what I said I’d do, huh?” After watching the other woman wince every time she turned her head for over a week Isabela had finally, giving in to one of those irritating little temptations, offered to work the kink out of her neck for her on one condition.
Leaning past Varric she had planted her elbows on the table and tapped her lips, winking at Aveline, “Just give me a nice big kiss in front of our band of misfits here and I’ll take care of that mean ole pain in your neck.” She watched Aveline narrow her eyes as a blush that had very little to do with the one mug of ale she’d been nursing washed across her cheeks making those precious freckles pop out. Isabela had leaned forward even further and tapped Aveline’s nose with each word for emphasis. “Just one kiss.” Slapping Isabela’s hand away she stood up, leaning towards the pirate as the group fell silent.
“You are the biggest pain in my neck.” She spoke clearly before turning on her heel and stomping to the bar. Isabela heard the front door open and said quite loudly that she needed to relieve herself before hurrying down the hallway, stomach sinking and feeling ridiculous. Aveline never took her up on her advances, hell most of the time she didn’t even play along at all, yet she continued to make a fool out of herself. At least with Varric or Hawke, or even Fenris, there was some friendly and occasionally crude banter. She returned a few minutes later and had spent the rest of the evening subtly watching Aveline nurse her second drink and absently rub at her neck while the others joked and made grand plans to solve all the world’s problems.
Eventually everyone else wandered home and it was just Aveline, Varric, and her sitting around quietly talking. No great schemes or discussion of world tragedies, just the soft comfort of friends talking about everything and nothing. She headed to the bar for her and Varric’s fifth or sixth mug, she hadn’t been paying much attention to her drinks after Aveline had slapped her hand away like she was a child reaching for a sweet she had been forbidden to have, and glanced back to see Aveline laughing at something Varric said. A little wave of jealousy snuck up on her and she quickly turned back to the bar and grabbed the drinks. Thunking Varric’s in front of him she went to take her spot across from him planning on beating him at a hand or two of cards before heading up to bed. When she passed Aveline’s seat at the head of the table the red-head grabbed her by the waist and pulled her into her lap. Varric’s eyebrows almost disappeared into his hair as Aveline dug her fingers into Isabela’s neck and pulled her in for a kiss. She barely had time to register how soft Aveline’s lips were before it was over. “There. You got your bloody kiss now will you help with this damned pain in my neck?” From her new seat she slowly set her mug down as Aveline shifted uncomfortably and rubbed the kink in her neck, turning red under Varric’s scrutiny.
“Well Varric isn’t quite ‘the group’ and that wasn’t exactly a big kiss but I suppose I could be generous this time.” Isabela lazily dropped her arm around Aveline’s shoulder.
“Just spit it out already. Will you help with this or not? Because if not I think it’s best I just go to bed.” Varric muttered something about taking his drink to his room and left with a grin. After a minute of watching Isabela’s sly grin Aveline grew impatient and moved to stand up. Isabela slipped to her feet and took her hand, leading the way to her room. Once there she smiled as Aveline looked around the room for the first time. Even with all the time the group had spent in The Hanged Man she had never ventured into Isabela’s rooms. Isabela locked the door and instructed the other woman to strip, rolling her eyes and giving an exaggerated sigh when Aveline protested but turning her back as the other woman slipped off her clothing and rushed into Isabela’s bed, pulling the covers up to her chin.
“I’m sure you don’t look all that bad naked.” Isabela teased as she undid the buckles on her boots. “I mean with all that armor you lug around you should be plenty lean at least.” She would never admit to all the times she had lain in bed, alone or, much less often lately it seemed, with company and wondered just how lean or muscular Aveline really was under that armor. Wondered if her pale skin was marked with anything other than the smattering of freckles Isabela had glimpsed on occasion. Wondered what her hair felt like slipping through her fingers. Wondered just what her skin would taste and feel like. Varric would have accused her of being obsessed with Aveline and Merrill would have accused her of being infatuated with the woman. Tugging off her boots she smiled to herself. None of that mattered right now because she had Aveline here in her bed and even if it was just for a massage that was enough for now.
“Just no funny business, alright?” Aveline’s voice was muffled in the pillows she had dug her face into when she rolled over and Isabela giggled as she picked up a corner of the covers, catching the briefest glimpse of a pale leg before the covers were yanked from her fingers. “I mean it.”
“Fine, fine. Spoilsport.” Isabela muttered as she positioned herself on Aveline’s back and drew down the covers, exposing pale shoulders covered in freckles. She ran her fingers across the freckles and smoothed out the tense skin, smiling when she heard the tiny sigh. “I wonder…” she murmured to herself as she bent forward and dropped a quick kiss on Aveline’s neck.