It’s QueerBlogWed! This definitely applies to Christopher, Damian, and ‘Waiting for Rebirth’, so here they all are. It would apply to Duessa Ashelocke, too, although she’s also the representative of an establishment which Damian had hoped he’d left behind. Alas, escaping from an arachnocrat is not so easy, especially if she’s Duessa Ashelocke…
“Well, it’s good to see you, my dear, but I don’t think much of what you’ve done with your life.”
Damian had froze in terror at the sound of his aunt’s voice.
Duessa had stood in the shop, smiling down at him. Not bothering to open more than one pair of eyes.
He’d stared at her, feeling the store, its fragile sanctuary shrinking around him.
“Oh, don’t look at me like that. Did you really think you’d succeeded in defying me?” Duessa had laughed, a light, lady like titter, utterly different than Gabrielle’s. “I hope you enjoyed your moment of rebellion, my dear, but you didn’t think I’d truly let you go.”
“This is my Place of Power, Duessa.” Gabrielle had spoke, stepping out of the shadows to stand by his side.
Damian had shivered in anticipation. At last, she was going to fight for him, the mage he’d chosen to serve. The one who could teach him to stand up to his aunt.
“Damian is welcome to stay here for as long as he wishes.” Gabrielle had taken a few steps closer to look straight into Duessa’s eyes.
This would have been perfect, if only she hadn’t taken Duessa’s hand. Stroking it with a tenderness which completely excluded him.
“Remember our agreement.” His chosen mentor had said those words, while caressing his enemy’s fingers. “Damian has no place among the arachnocrats.”
“As if I could ever forget.” Duessa had raised a hand to brush one of Gabrielle’s locks of hair out of her face, almost tenderly. She’d opened a second pair of eyes, allowing them to rove with intimate disregard over the other woman. “I wonder if Damian has any place here, either, though?”
All it took was that one question to completely shake up any sense of belonging at the Navel.