Chapter Eleven

3.7K 422 50

          Rosie's was alive and well, as it always was, when Siobhan and Wren stumbled their weary bodies through the heavy wooden door. Wren could hardly stay on his feet, his eyes drooping, lips blue from the frigid temps outside, and elk furs saturated with melting snow. He let out a sigh when the door closed behind them, Siobhan wasn't sure how much that sigh was for the welcomed warmth hitting them or the sight of Rosie's patrons crowded in the small downstairs floor.

For a first timer, Rosie's was a true sight. It was neither a tavern nor Inn, nor did it fit the standard format of a brothel. Rosie's was truly one of a kind and it was by far Siobhan's favorite place to visit. She remembered her first time coming across the building that from the outside looked run down and decrepit, as most buildings in Firnlan looked. Inside it was another story. Golden chandeliers with candles flickering, hung from multiple large support beams. Three fireplaces burned bright with show dancers wiggling their hips on either side. Shirtless men, scantily clad women––Rosie's didn't discriminate with the entertainment—weaved and glided seductively through the mass of people.

"Siobhan, me dawlin'!"

Siobhan smiled at the sound of Rosie's deep drawl rising from the jumbled mass of noise. She opened her arms and waited for the strong arms of Rosie to pull her in. They didn't disappoint. The scent of Rosie's flowers was a welcome smell to the stench now curling off both Siobhan and Wren. Three more days of travel, nights spent cuddled like old lovers beside a fire in effort to keep Wren warm, had added an odor Siobhan couldn't wait to wash away.

"Don't take dis personally dawlin . . ." Rosie released her hug, kissing both Siobhan's cheeks, and stepped away. "Ya smell fouler than a Smilodon in the summer."

"None taken." Siobhan scanned the room, bouncing from face to face. "Has Elias arrived by chance?"

Rosie clapped her hands and giggled. "Ooh that fine fish of a man. He was here, but I think he grew bored of waiting in my basement and went for a swim. I'll let ya know when he returns." She reached past Siobhan and grabbed Wren's cheeks with one strong hand. "Do tell me he's for me! I could use a new baby face entertainer."

Wren's eyes widened, his cheeks filling with color. Siobhan was half tempted to tell Rosie he was a gift, it would be fun to see Wren's reaction to the dastardly deeds that went on behind bedroom doors.

Alas, she took pity on him and said, "He is no entertainment. I'm not even sure he knows how to use what the Goddess has given him between his legs."

Wren jerked his head from Rosie's grip and scowled. "I know perfectly well what to do with my body, thank you very much."

Rosie touched his arms, feeling them the way a shopper might inspect produce at the bazaars. She circled around him, dragging a finger over his shoulder, and smelling his greasy hair.

"Ya, dear boy, at least don't resemble the stench of a Smilodon." She wrinkled her nose and grabbed his ear, looking inside. "Are those mites?"

Wren slapped her hand away and growled. Rosie laughed, bending over and slapping her hands against her thighs. Siobhan crossed her arms, grinning. His innocence was a true joy to her.

"We've been traveling for several days. We could use a good bath," Siobhan said through her chuckle.

"Of course! I'll have someone prepare a rose petal wash for ya immediately." Rosie grabbed Wren, pulling him close, and kissed him. The poor fool pushed with all his strength, but Rosie was stronger. When she released him, he gagged and wiped his lips. "Ya'll have to work on that, boy. Ya kiss like a dead fish."

Rosie waived and sauntered into the crowd. Her silky red dress sparkled in the candlelight.

"Is that . . ." He shook his head, staring at Rosie as she grabbed a girl cleaning a table and whispered to her, "a man in a dress?"

Draygon Frost | Book 1  | ✔️Where stories live. Discover now