Addergoole


Chapter 99: Jamian
Let's get down to business
I don't got no time to play around

No-one would ever say that cy’Linden turned down any opportunity for a party.

Jamian settled into a corner as the suite filled up again, startling himself by being grateful when Agatha showed up. The stories he’d heard made him tetchy and jittery about her, but her presence here meant that they might actually study. And, the part of his brain that was constantly jabbering about The Project offered, with her here, Bowen had a moment of peace.

Shiva was clearly not nearly as copacetic about the tiny blonde girl’s presence; she made no effort to be subtle as she gathered Niki and left as Aggie entered. Magnolia on the other hand, was syrupy-sweet, so much so that Jamian wondered if he was the only one that could taste the fakeness of it: no, Joff, in the corner, was making a face at Ivette. Ah, the empath corner of the room.

Ardell was the last to show up, as usual radiating so much smugness that she wanted to throw something at him – or hide. The look he gave her left nothing to the imagination, and Jaya wondered for a moment if he was as indiscriminate as people said before realizing that she’d changed again. Had Ardell’s gaze alone done that to her, subconsciously? The thought gave her a small shiver as she willed herself male again and looked for Ty.

Ty was greeting Mea in a manner just as blatant as Ardell’s gaze. Did this cy’ree think about anything but sex? Jamian grumbled to himself, trying not to acknowledge the little stab of jealousy, watching Ty kiss another… person. It wasn’t fair.

Maybe that was what Ty wanted from him, though. Hadn’t they been talking about that just the other day, about him being a girl for Ty? He still wasn’t sure what he thought about that. Of course, there was another nagging concern there too: what if he was bad at it? Would Ty still want him if he didn’t like her? Ty had certainly been contrite enough when Jaya returned the other night, but there was the lingering undercurrent of an unresolved issue.

And, of course, the order hanging out there: Ty hadn’t been contrite enough to get rid of it. No girls for Jamian, none except Ty, a loss he hadn’t really thought he’d care about until Ty had laid down the law. So he was supposed to be faithful to Tya, then; that made sense, right? That was how normal couples worked, he was pretty sure, although normal couples generally only had one gender setting to worry about, not four.

Melchior had been very understanding about the whole thing, at least. Jaya was glad she had good friends she could talk to about her problems. Not like some Kept, it seemed; she should be thankful Ty let her out at all. Although he almost hadn’t, that night, when she went to see Melchior. A hand touched her arm, moving over her shoulder caressingly. Melchior... would that be okay? Her reverie was interrupted by the sudden realization that she was mixing past and present. Melchior wasn’t here, but that hand was very real. Hands. She was, more or less, surrounded; Ivette had settled down to her right and was stroking her hair; Ardell to her left was the one caressing her shoulder.

Don’t have sexual relations with any females that aren’t me. Ivette was undoubtedly female, definitely (as was her norm) underdressed, and sporting Mark’s collar. Mark would kill him. He scrambled away from her, which shoved him right up against Ardell, who was still touching him, still touching, oh, crap, her shoulder.

How did he do that to her? Although she had to admit, the man had a certain charm... No! Ugh! It took her a moment to realize that his charms were probably literal, a part of his Change; that would certainly fit with the rest of this group. For that moment, though, he was still touching her. And, she realized, across the room, Anwell was touching Tya… and so was Manira. So what was wrong with this?

Well, for one, he was a guy. She was running out of places to scoot, though, so she just looked at Ardell instead. “Please…” Crap. Way to sound like a little girl. “Cut it out.”

“What?” His smile reminded her of a large predator, lazily eyeing its prey before striking. “I thought you’d be friendly.”

“There’s friendly and then there’s friendly.” Ivette was petting her again on the other side, too. “Mark’ll kill me,” she murmured to the succubus, hoping it would be enough.

“Well, there’s friendly and then there’s friendly,” Ivette echoed her, her own smile less dangerous-looking than Ardell’s but no less predatory in its own way. It wouldn’t be a bad way to go... and Ivette’s lips did look deliciously kissable. She leaned in, a bit; if nothing else, that meant leaning away from Ardell… and ran headlong into Ty’s order.

“Urk,” she complained. “Ivette, Ty.”

“Ohh, really?” she said with a small smile, raising a finger to Jaya’s lips. “What if you just hold still?”

“Um.” Well, it was worth a try. “Okay?”

Ivette slunk closer, all but draping herself over Jaya. She was acutely conscious of the redhead’s firm, heavy breasts pressing against her as their lips met.

A kiss wasn’t sex. Holding still while Ivette kissed her wasn’t sex, although being that close to Ivette was probably illegal in several states. She tried to ignore Ardell, who hadn’t stopped touching her yet, despite the fact that he, at least, wasn’t against her orders.

Then again, neither was Melchior, was he?

“I knew you’d come around,” Ivette murmured, her lips brushing against Jaya’s. She kissed her again, and set her hands on Jaya’s sides.

Come around? What? With Ivette’s breasts up against her and her tastes-like-cinnamon lips and tongue doing interesting things to Jaya’s lips, there wasn’t really anywhere to go but around, especially when retreat kept bumping her in to Ardell.

It wasn’t long before she couldn’t keep Ivette’s hands and Ardell’s separated in her mind, as they roamed over her, but that wasn’t so bad really, was it? They were just hands... except for Ivette’s tongue. For a moment she wondered what that tongue would feel like...

“I know some of this cy’ree has a strange idea of studying, but I doubt threesomes will be on the challenge agenda. Ty, can’t you do something about your Kept?” Aggie’s acid voice cut through Jaya’s fantasies.

Actual thought returned, cutting through the haze that had enshrouded her mind. Threesome? With Ivette and Ardell? Did it really look like... yes, yes it did. Oh, that was bad.

There was only one way she was going to get out of this alive, and that was if Ty believed it hadn’t been her idea. She squirmed in the sudden quiet of the room, twisting away from Ardell’s hands. “Cut it out,” she repeated herself.

Ardell laughed loudly as he removed his hands, backing off. “Oh, now you protest.”

Fuck. She slipped out of the chair, looking for Ty. “I protested before, too,” she pointed out grumpily.

Ty was already walking over, and he didn’t look happy. Great. At least Ardell was leaving her alone now. And they were in the middle of a freaking cy’ree meeting, with everyone watching. She swallowed her pride, tried not to think about everyone looking at her. She didn’t want Ty to give her another order. She didn’t want Ty kissing Mea any more, either. Or Anwell, or Manira. One fight at a time. “I…” didn’t mean to. “Sorry.”

Ty glowered at her. “Not really what I meant when I said I wanted you to loosen up a bit,” he grumbled.

“Sorry,” she repeated. “So, studying, maybe?”

“Studying,” Ty agreed, but he pulled her in for a hug that was more restraint than affection and whispered against her ear, “if you can be a girl for Ivette and Ardell… you can be a girl for me, too.”

Could she, really, if it came to that? She gulped quietly and said nothing.

Magnolia took pity on her, it seemed, because the meeting actually got underway. Jamian, quietly male again and just as quietly invisible in the back of the room, watched with awe as the cy’ree’s upperclassmen actually got serious about something.

It only intensified as he realized they actually knew what they were doing. The role of fermions to create supersymmetry in string theory? Magnolia explained it. Technological developments in the Second Intermediate Period due to the invasion of the Hyksos? Agatha knew all about them. Ralph Ellison’s childhood? Even Ardell had something to contribute, when he could be bothered. When someone asked for the area defined by the closed loop x = t cos t - t, y = t sin t, 0 ≤ t ≤ 2π, Jamian didn’t even know what they were talking about, but Ty knew the answer was (4π³)/3 - 2π. Maybe they really had a chance to win this thing, if they could all keep their pants on long enough to focus on the task at hand.

The question was, he mused, thinking about the plans Shahin had hinted at, did he want them to win?

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