I Met Him At The River...

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Blue eyes. Chiseled chin. Golden hair. Creamy skin. Six feet and five inches tall, with a voice like thunder. A vicious warrior and a graceful gentleman both perfectly embodied in one handsome, miraculous being. Strength unmatched. Beauty divine. His name was Magnar and he was mine.

We met one fine day at the river. A weary traveler seeking a bath, he stopped midway noticing that the pool was already occupied. He tried not to peek at me, but he couldn’t resist. I saw him hiding behind the tree, so I decided to give him a show. I sang louder as I gently rubbed my hands along my umber shoulders and arms, then playfully thrashed about and spun around. I hummed as I washed my face and poked my toes out of the water to wash my feet. I wet my silky black hair, rung it out, wet it again, and whipped it around. Then, I vanished beneath the blue.

I could feel his eyes staring, anxiously anticipating my resurface. He probably thought me to be an illusion of some sort, I mused to myself. After a moment or two, his curiosity got the best of him. He emerged from his hiding spot behind the willow and cautiously approached the river. He stood there speechless, then came even closer and knelt down. He sat there for a time, then reached his hand into the river.

“Whatever are you doing, sir?” My firm voice called behind him.

“I thought I saw-- a beautiful young maiden-- in the river--” He stuttered in confusion, still staring unflinchingly at the water, “She went under so abruptly, perhaps she has been eaten or drowned-- or was she, perchance, a mermaid--?”

Finally realizing he was no longer alone, the stalwart arose, spun on his heels, and drew his sword quickly, its point arriving precisely at my throat. With my lips still pursed, I lifted my chin an inch and looked up into his sharp eyes. Without moving his steady arm, he slowly turned his head toward the river and back at me with a blink.

“You... The maiden... But, how?” He retracted his sword from my neck, stabbed it into the ground, and knelt on one knee before me. The top of his helmet brushed against my silky white gown, and his gaze landed at my bare ebony feet. “I am ever so sorry. I apologize for startling you, milady.”

“You startled me not, but it is I who have startled you.” I retorted.

Surprised at my answer, he lifted his head and one eyebrow.

“Now,” I resumed, “do you actually intend to bathe here, or have you come all this way only to spy upon a damsel disrobed?”

He stood to his feet and stared at me in disbelief. He seemed to be awestruck, amused, and annoyed by me all at once.

Shaking his head with a scoff, he removed his helmet. I gulped and held my breath, struggling to maintain my impudence as he shook out his blonde tress. I sized him down as he unbuckled his sheath, dropping his breastplate, shin guards, and shoes. He smirked at me as he began to remove his garments, revealing his hefty chest and sinewy arms. Turning toward the river, he dropped the final piece, exposing his buttocks. With a final glance over the shoulder, he plunged into the water. When he arose, I was nowhere to be seen.

I ran like the wind through the forest giggling and blushing. My heart couldn’t contain the emotions that filled up in me. I entertained myself imagining what he could have been thinking, Half of me desired to go back and see him, but the other half wanted to leave him with my strong and mysterious side to ponder upon. I knew that if it was meant, we would surely meet again. Time would only tell.


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