Another MU Teaser Tale

July 29, 2011 at 11:06 pm (Magic University, writing)

And this one is actually called “Tease”. This little story introduces Urwick, the dark elf competitor in Masters & Renegades #1: Magic University. But Urwick has a secret…

Tease

    Urwick peered in through the entrance to Astra’s Alehouse. It wasn’t his usual haunt, but it would have to do. His favourite tavern was off limits until he was finished participating in the Magic University Elite Seat Admission Trials. He could not go home or be with the one he loved until he had run the course of the Trials either. With all that in mind, and time to waste, this seemed like his best option.

    If nothing else, Urwick would blend in at Astra’s. He would get a few strange looks because of his dark skin and moonlight-coloured hair, but most of the people who frequented Astra’s were associated in some way with the University, so the presence of a dark elf wouldn’t be unheard of. The University attracted all sorts.

    Urwick made his way quietly to a table in one of the dimly lit corners of the establishment. He wanted to keep to himself in case anyone did recognize him. Students and faculty at the Alehouse generally didn’t mingle, and if he made it clear he didn’t want company, the assortment of patrons would likely respect that.

    He sighed and eased himself back into his chair. It was going to be a lonely and boring evening. He hoped the Alehouse would have some kind of entertainment, to make the time pass a little faster. In the meantime, he decided to order a half decanter of wine. It would take the edge off of his mood and help him to relax.

Urwick decided that it would be prudent not to indulge in a full decanter, as tempting as the idea was. While he wasn’t concerned how imbibing would affect his performance the following day, he wanted to be reasonably alert. He would be observing, taking notes and drawing conclusions, and it wouldn’t do to have an alcoholic fog blurring his thoughts, not to mention that navigating the trails of the Trials would be unpleasant with a hangover.

    He called over the serving girl and placed his order. While waiting for her return, Urwick scanned the tavern for items of interest. There were a few vaguely familiar faces, but most people were ignoring him, including those he suspected he might know. His own preferred watering hole was the focus of patrons looking for a more casual leisure time. It tended to be crowded and boisterous, and all about having fun. Astra’s was much more reserved. There were usually elements of political posturing within its walls, cliquish groups and those who aspired to network. The sycophants and their lack of sincerity left a foul taste in Urwick’s mouth, but all of that had become the norm at the University. Sometimes he asked himself why he was even bothering with the Admission Trials, or with the University at all, but every time the notion rose to the surface, fate would find a way to remind him exactly why.

    As the barmaid arrived with his wine, and Urwick tipped her well with instructions to leave him be, he noticed the attention of several of Astra’s patrons had been redirected to the front of the Alehouse. Pouring his first glass of wine, he craned his neck to see if he could get a glimpse at what they were finding so interesting. He had just lifted the glass to his lips and had taken his first sip, when he caught a glimmer of green out of the corner of his silvery eye.

Urwick almost choked on his wine, straining to get a better view. The form of a woman moved through the crowd, an extraordinary woman whose skin was the colour of forest foliage and whose hair fell in lively greenish-brown curls across her shoulders – a dryad. Urwick’s heart raced when her wide emerald eyes met his, and he tensed until he realized that she was not approaching his table. Instead, she moved to the space directly across the room from his and took a seat at the best lit part of the table there.

Urwick was not the only one watching her at first, but she shot dismissive glances at the others looking her way, and eventually the only exchange remaining was the one between dark elf and dryad. While such tactics might not work elsewhere, everyone at Astra’s knew that anybody frequenting the Alehouse was possibly a very powerful mage. You did not disrespect any stranger you met there, aware of the potential consequences. Curious, Urwick leaned back in his chair, fondling the bowl of his wineglass.

“You sadistic temptress,” he murmured. “Why are you doing this to me? You know I can’t acknowledge you. Any of the others could be here, playing witness. This is so cruel.”

Her eyes lit up with mischief. She could not hear him across the loud barroom, but Urwick knew she had some idea what he had said. With a smirk, she shrugged off her mossy-coloured cloak. Urwick drew in his breath sharply and sat up instinctively. She was wearing a very daring, low-cut leafy dress. It left very little to the imagination. She ran a hand slowly over the top of her exposed skin, purposefully to draw his attention there. Her smile widened.

Urwick wriggled uncomfortably in his seat. She was testing the limits of his patience and endurance.

“Playing dirty – this is so not fair,” he sighed. She was toying with him, that much was obvious, and enjoying every moment of it. Urwick suspected there would be some form of retaliation in her future. As much as he wanted to tear his eyes away and focus on his wine instead, the stirrings in his body would not allow it to obey.

Next came the hair toss, another wicked ploy. Phantom sensations teased at Urwick; the silky touch of tresses on skin, the sweet aroma of woodland flowers blended with a hint of pine, none of which he could actually experience from across the room, but he knew them anyway. Scent-associated memories were supposed to be the strongest.

“You wicked seductress,” he breathed, fighting frustration. This lovely woman had sought him out just to bring him torment. She knew there was nothing more desirable than something you weren’t allowed to have. Maybe that’s why she was insisting on teasing him this way – it was all some sort erotic game for her. She had been in his position herself once, interested in what was tentatively within her reach, but not supposed to touch. She had caved to her desires at that time and had broken the rules for his sake. Urwick liked to believe he had more willpower than that.

The dryad was not satisfied with letting him go with a single gesture. A lithe leg slid out from beneath the table. The slit in her dress allowed the fabric to fall away, exposing her verdant thigh. A few heads turned in response, despite the earlier warning looks she had cast their way. This time her glances to those men were a little more hostile. This was between her and Urwick, her display intended only for him. It was not her fault that he had forced her to seek him out, to prey upon him in a public place. The dark elf tried to resist reacting, but his pulse quickened and he could not force the thoughts of what they would do if he could get his hands on her out of his mind.

“So, you want to prove that I’m just as weak as you,” he whispered before emptying his glass and pouring a second. The wine was supposed to last the evening, but he was looking to it to dull his senses. He would need more than a half decanter for that. If anything, the wine was making him more eager. “You want to show that I’m just as likely to give into my animal urges as you once were; when something that has captivated me has been placed within easy access. I won’t let you win.”

Urwick still didn’t understand why she had suddenly been smitten with him when she had first taken notice of him. He must have done something or said something that had sparked an avid interest, but he might never know what. She kept insisting he knew, but he didn’t.

Urwick was aware that he was the envy of all of the men in Astra’s at that moment. Everyone else there wished they were the centre of the dryad’s attention. She might not be sitting at his table, but she was still managing to create a scene that involved the dark elf, with only subtle movements and hungry looks. Urwick didn’t want that kind of notice. It could make what he had planned next day at the Trials more difficult – if not impossible. Thinking of his obligations, he tore his gaze away from the shimmering vision of green and locked his eyes on the wine glass before him.

It was not an easy task. All of her teasing had left him wanting more. His thoughts kept drifting back to nights of passion, inviting whispers, well-placed hands and firm flesh that yielded deliciously to him along with that haunting but succulent woodsy scent. It constantly drove him to distraction and to the desire to allow his eyes to drink in the sight of her again. He twitched and shifted in his chair again, thankful for the table and shadows that shielded him mostly from view. She would know that her efforts were overpowering him otherwise. She would see that he was sweating and ready to break. All it had taken was that one seed of temptation.

“I won’t give in,” he groaned. “Until tomorrow evening, I don’t know you. You’re a stranger to me, just like you are to the others.”

Urwick downed his second glass of wine, this time without any hesitation. It did not provide him with the liquid courage he sought to fight off her wordless advances. He could hear her soft laughter, even though doing so through the roar and buzz of the crowd would seem impossible. He could imagine her whispering his name. She was too cunning for him, setting up this alluring play. She would be victorious after all.

His reserves of inner strength faltering, Urwick raised his eyes towards her table again. To his surprise, she was gone, but she had left a leafy looking silken scarf on the table, a sign perhaps – a summons. He wondered where she would have disappeared to. Surging to his feet, he strode directly to her table and gathered up the scarf. This was a mean trick, getting him all worked up, and then abandoning him, leaving only this token in her stead.

“Back door,” a man standing beside the table informed Urwick. “She went out the back. There’s an alleyway out there. You might still be able to catch up with her.”

The dark elf nodded a thanks and then swiftly heeded the stranger’s instructions, seeking out the rear exit. The dryad had not headed off down the alleyway, as the man had suggested. She was waiting for Urwick when he emerged from Astra’s and she grabbed him firmly by the wrist. She then gave him a gentle push and pressed him up against the wall, resting her body against his.

“I’m sorry,” she whispered, her moist lips brushing his dark pointy ear. “I couldn’t wait until tomorrow night. I wanted you now.”

Urwick practically melted there on the spot. He felt exactly the same way.

“Here?”

She laughed at his foolishness.

“I’m desperate, not dumb. I booked a room at the Gilded Drake Inn, third door to your left on the second floor. Only the best for us – it will be like a brief vacation. No one will be watching for us there, and I doubt you’ll run into any of the other candidates. Give me a head start, a couple of minutes, and then you can follow me to the room. I know this means you won’t be all that well rested…”

“I’ll suffer,” Urwick insisted. He wasn’t joking. He could think of no other way he would rather be spending his night, even if it meant he would be dead on his feet the next day.

The woman in green draped her arm around the back of his neck and pulled him in for a lengthy kiss. It left him breathless and starved for more. With a teasing giggle, she released him and scurried off down the alleyway. Urwick sagged against the cold, hard brick of the wall. He was an incredibly fortunate man.

Minutes seemed like hours to him as he waited to give her the head start that she had asked for. It gave him time to contemplate all of the wicked things he would do with her once he was able to catch up with her again. As he finally started out after her, he was glad she was the type who was occasionally willing to overlook the rules. Tonight, he expected they would be breaking all of them.

This little tale may have left you with more questions than answers about Urwick and his lady in green. The good news is you can find the answers in Magic University. The bad news is, you’ll have to wait until September to read it. J

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2 Comments

  1. Barbara said,

    Fantastic seduction scene, very descriptive. He is without a doubt my favorite character in this series. Go Urwick!!

  2. chantellyb said,

    And he makes an appearance in 7 of the 8 books (he is mentioned in book #2 but doesn’t make an appearance). I’d have to say that he is the hub of the series.

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