Egill ran his hand down his chest, his destination straining upward, starving for attention. It wasn't his hand that his manhood wanted, though. It was the woman who had devoured him with her mouth last night.
He was being dishonest with himself calling her a woman. She was just a dream, a figment of his imagination; for that was all he had to look forward to for the rest of his life--dreams...and his hand.
He wondered if he should be pleased that, after years of captivity, he'd gone from dreaming of many women to just this one. She came almost nightly now, her mouth eager to serve him, her legs always willing to spread so he could settle between them, claim her wet, soft core, fuck her until she screamed out his name.
He closed his eyes and remembered the night before, thought about his name coming out of her lips. She appeared regularly, her tongue more substance than illusion, even though he knew she wasn't real. She'd been in his dreams for quite some time, her dark hair always hiding her features so he couldn't quite make out who she was. But what did it matter, really? She was nothing more than a dream, brought about by his need for a woman to pleasure him.
A real woman. But one wasn't forthcoming, was she? It wasn't like she would pop out of the waterfall, or spring out of the ground, ready for him to take her. Or maybe she was. His dream lover had visited him more often than not recently. She'd always been on the fringes of his reality, or his damnation, rather.
When his living nightmare had started, she'd been nothing more than a wisp of woman, dark hair floating around, teasing him as to the idea that someone was here with him, that he wasn't stuck in Hel alone. Then she'd gone away, fading into the trees, and every once in a while he thought he caught a glimpse of her.
Over the years, the floating images had turned into a woman, one with hunger in her body. He'd tried several times to move the hair so he could see her face, glance into her eyes, but she'd always stopped him, always diverted his attention elsewhere. She'd usually done it by taking his hard staff into her mouth, as she'd done last night.
He stroked himself as he remembered the feel of her lips on his length, recalled the tingles she'd stirred inside him as she moved lower, gently sliding her wet tongue over his sac. It had been so real, yet when he'd begged her to let him touch her, to stroke her body and fill her she'd refused. She'd told him she was a dream, meant only for him.
But for the last few months things had changed. She'd settle herself over him and take him deep inside her, and then she'd move, her breasts bouncing as she rode him. He imagined her face, drawn up in pleasure as he fingered her folds, sending the same shivers through her that she'd sent through him.
Egill closed his eyes and imagined her screaming out in bliss, clutching him tightly. He came with three hard strokes, his seed shooting up and coating his stomach.
"Need you," he growled out as he stroked himself again. "Oh, Freya," he prayed to the goddess, "if she visits again, capture her for me, bind her to me. I implore you."
He stretched out on his bed, knowing his pleas would go unanswered. But in the other room there would be food, delivered daily, hot and nutritious. It would fill his belly--keep his body going from day to day. The goddess had looked upon him with favor by bringing him daily food. He was sure she'd done the same for his brothers.
From one miserable day to another. Abandoned and alone, paying for his father's crimes against their people, and against the witch who had imprisoned him here.
"Stop with the self-pity," he said, sitting up. "Your brothers are in the same situation."
Or at least he thought they were. He hadn't seen Rugoff or Benedikt since he'd been banished here. He didn't even know where here was. The only things he could count on were the daily food deliveries and the dreams of the dark-haired woman, which came more and more frequently now.
He screwed up his face as he thought about the woman. He'd asked his food benefactor for a woman many times, and she, or he, had never granted his wish. Why was this one only coming in his dreams? Or was it some sort of trick Loki was playing on him, trying to drive him further into madness. Not that he had that much more distance to travel.
"And it will be even less if you sit around, as if you were an animal rolling around in the mud." He stood and stalked toward the door. He had things to do; sitting around was not an option.
First he would bathe, and then he would give Gretchen a good work out. There weren't that many moons left until trial would happen. He'd forgotten about that earlier when he'd been thinking about what kept him going in this forsaken place.
Once a cycle, his father appeared. At first, Egill hadn't been sure what was happening when the snake had slithered into view, until it had attacked him. It had been a good thing that Egill had Gretchen strapped to his hip at the time. She'd made short work of the snake, slicing it into tiny pieces.
And then, as if by the hands of the gods, the snake had grown back together. It had writhed on the ground, and then it had turned into his father and disappeared.
Egill had been stunned. If Benedikt were here, he would have been able to decipher the meaning of the snake Egill had killed and that then had turned into his father. It had taken Egill years to figure out his father was being punished and was looking for the one thing he would not give the witch.
His father's greed had been their family's undoing. When he'd realized that, Egill had started to train, had made sure his muscles stayed fit so he could wield Gretchen against his father, could defeat him.
Egill did not have the emerald, but he had one of the keys the witch had made that locked the box in which the emerald was hidden. And he would guard it with his life. When he wasn't in his shelter, he either took it with him, or hid it in a place no one would ever think to look. There was no way his father would get a hold of Egill's key. He would make sure of that.
Watching the life drain from his father's body did not give Egill pleasure, but it gave him a sense of satisfaction, one that grew as the years passed. It gave him something to live for--something to train for.
Without bothering to put on clothes, he strode into the main room. The table was filled with food. He walked over and glanced at it. Nothing looked appealing right now, but it never did in the mornings. He never ate until after he'd done his training.
Today, he needed to wash off first. He'd go to the waterfall and cleanse his body, then he'd sweat it up again by striking out at imaginary foes. Before he left, he needed to make sure the key was secure.
He went to the bed and pushed aside the heavy wooden frame. The wood made a harsh scraping sound as it moved against the stone floor. Then he pulled up the loose rock the frame sat on. Nestled down in the dirt was the box that held the key. He lifted it up and opened it slowly, as if he were revealing a treasure. In a way that's exactly what he was doing. This was a treasure his father coveted more than anything in the world, something that he wanted even more than he wanted the adoration of his wife, the love of his sons.
Egill would make sure he never got it. He put the box back in place, then pulled the bed over the hole, the scraping noise sending chills up his back. The bed was heavy, and he knew that no one would be able to move it except for him. He laughed at the thought. He was hiding it from his father, who never appeared as anything other than some sort of animal or monster. The man wouldn't have hands to move the bed.
Yet, every time Egill left the cave he made sure it was hidden. Why? Before he could ponder the thought too heavily and weigh his mood down he turned and left the room, stopping only to pick up Gretchen, whom he made sure was always close to the bed before he went to sleep at night.
He had no idea how many nights he'd spent here, and other than his father no one had ever appeared as either friend or foe, but he didn't plan on being caught off guard while he was sleeping.
Not that many people could find his lair. He'd taken great pains to make his home in a place that would not be easy for people to find. During his first days in captivity, he'd slept in the trees while he'd searched for a way out of this Hel. When it became obvious that he was stuck here, he'd scouted for a place that would be hidden, where no one would find him.
He'd finally found it one day while bathing at one of the many waterfalls. In the hills surrounding it were caves, one of them large enough for him to use as a home. He'd carved out rooms, moving on to another one when the structure became unstable.
The entrance to this one was behind a cascade of water, concealed from view. It had proven to be the best one yet. The caves were cold, and at first he'd woven together tree vines and leaves to make himself coverings. But after the food had started to arrive, he'd wished for a woolen covering, and it had appeared the next day. It didn't take him long to take advantage of the gifts, and soon he had furnishings for every room. He also had a stash of weaponry he could use against any opponent.
Except a magical one. So far, none of those had appeared.
It was beautiful outside, the sky a light blue that he knew would change toward the end of the day. It would darken and bring clouds, as it did most nights, and then it would rain. When that happened, he would move inside, continuing his practice at killing his father until he was tired. Then he would eat, and then he would sleep.
And the next day would start all over again, with the same events happening. The only change would come during the trial, or when the woman appeared in his dreams. He tried not to dwell on the fact that he would spend the rest of his life, his eternal life, here. It did no good to feel sorry for himself.
He looked down, watching his feet as he trod along the pathway to the other waterfall. There was a good clearing there where he could practice after washing off. He was getting nearer now, the sound of the water rushing over the rocks above the pond a familiar sound, almost that of hearing a friend call out that they were happy to see you.
And then he stopped, his heart jumping into his chest. Was that--? He cocked his head, straining to hear, and then his heart seemed to jump out of his chest, his shoulders and arms going numb.
There was a woman here. He could hear her, singing softly. He shook his head, closing his eyes tightly as if it would change things, as if it would make the sound disappear. But he could still hear her, saying words in a language he didn't understand.
He took a tentative step forward, and then another, and another. Soon he found himself at the edge of the clearing, looking at the most beautiful sight he'd ever seen. A woman stood under the waterfall. Her back was to him, but it was easy to make out her womanly shape. If she would turn, he was sure he would see bountiful breasts that led down to a luscious middle. From this position, he had no trouble seeing her beautiful behind, shapely and inviting. Her long, dark hair cascaded down her back, ending just above the curve of her buttocks.
Her hair...her long dark...
"Thor's Hammer," he whispered. "It's you."
She turned ever so slightly, just so he could catch a glimpse of the side of her face. Her lips were full, but he already knew that. She may not let him get a good look at her during her nocturnal visits, but he knew she had full lips. He had no trouble recalling the feel of them wrapped around his shaft.
She giggled and his staff sprang to life, hardening so quickly it was almost painful.
"I think not," she said, her words coming out in Norse.
He lifted Gretchen from his side, pointing the tip at her. "I said, show yourself."
Light laughter filled the air, and he wanted to hate her for it. But his manhood throbbed harder as she turned her face away from him. She ran her hands down her sides, one of them disappearing in front of her, and he had no trouble imagining that she was touching herself, putting her fingers where he longed to put his.
"Two swords, both of them with you always." Her voice was like soft flowers rubbing against his skin. "Which one will you poke me with? I prefer the one you had at birth, don't you?"
She bent over, spreading her legs wide. He had a perfect view of her folds as she thrust herself upward, as if she were standing on her tiptoes. Her hair drifted into the water as she wiggled her bottom at him. "Come and fuck me, Egill. Come and put your rod deep inside me."
His sex threatened to burst at her words, and the sword he held in his hand wavered. This couldn't be real. She was an illusion, a trick.
"Show yourself!" He screamed the words, mostly to cover up the noise of her fingers as they moved through her folds, for he had no doubt that's what she was doing. The sound was unmistakable.
Her soft moans continued, and he yelled the command again. This time she straightened, casually running her fingers through the water before she turned toward him.
His gaze went immediately to her breasts, large and full, her nipples taut and ready to be sucked. Her fingers were on her stomach, drifting lower. He watched her intently as they drifted down...down...down...until they touched the sparse, dark curly hair on her womanly mound.
Egill licked his lips. His manhood pulsed harder, and if it had been up to that appendage, he would drop Gretchen and give the woman exactly what she craved. She could be a trick, though, sent from his father to distract while he searched for a way to destroy Egill.
"Don't you want me?" Her deep voice broke the trance he'd fallen into as her fingers toyed with the hair. It was trimmed very neatly, and he could see the lips of her womanhood, plump and wet, ready to receive him.
He throbbed harder, then realization took over. No woman had ever come here. He jerked his gaze up to her face. She licked her full lips, but he tried not to concentrate on them. He studied her nose, her eyes and then he cried out as realization struck him.
"Witch!" Heat raced through him and his cock deflated as fast as it had inflated. "You. Will. Die."