Blue Bottled Belly Dancers and other fine myths
A shower cleared up most of my hangover and headache, and food helped it disappear completely. Three hours after I woke up from my strange dreams, I was feeling nearly normal again. Though, I did wonder. If the bite had been real, what else had been? And Heero wasnít exactly acting normal, whatever that was. As a matter of fact, he was acting more unusual then his usual unusual behavior. What better way to try to forget everything, then to go out and act like a tourist? So, thatís what I did.
Slipping into an old pair of jeans and a tank top, I grabbed my Djinni and headed for the Topkapi Palace. Itís a large, extremely complex structure built on the edge of the Bosphorous, The Golden Horn, and the Sea of Marmara. For about five dollars, you can get a tour through it, and for three dollars more, you can visit the Harem. Though no one lives in the palace anymore, it was still utterly fascinating.
How to sum up a place that magnificent in just a few words? Tiles, wealth, opulence, gold. Because everywhere you looked, this place showed those things with each turn and twist.
While standing and looking at the complex tile work of one of about a hundred rooms, I suddenly had a strange vision. It was like a memory of something that had never happened.
I was listening vaguely to chatter around us, admiring the structural design and space of the room. Heero was standing off to one side, and I glanced at him.
Heíd changed his outfit some, and now wore dark jeans and a dark shirt to match, the colors blending in with his equally midnight hair and making him appear all in all, like a shadow with golden skin. He didnít appear to be paying attention to anything but his own thoughts, and it felt familiar somehow. Like dťjŗ vu only... different.
I sidled up to him, poking him in the side and smiling when he frowned at me over the top of his sunglasses. I had to make him wear them; his eyes were just too startling for the average person. "You look like youíre thinking too hard. Whatís occupying your thoughts so much, hmm?"
Heíd had the same far off look when he was looking out the window at the hotel. That aura of history that crawled over him at those times.
He didnít answer right away, instead staring at the intricate tile work without seeing it. Our tour group was leaving the room, and I lagged behind, finding the sharp angles of Heeroís features much more interesting then any tour could ever be.
Without thinking, I reached out and trailed my hand down one of those flawless cheeks. "What do you think about when you get that look? Are you remembering things? Are you just... going faraway?"
He looked startled for a moment, jerking his head back from my touch. "You ask too many questions." He growled.
"Maybe I do, but isnít it part of my wish that you tell me about yourself? Donít you have to? So tell me what I want to know." I grinned at him, showing my teeth a little too much.
I was feeling angry I admit. I knew heíd messed with me somehow, and I didnít like it. He hadnít said anything to me about those dreams, if they were dreams, and I wasnít going to ask. But that didnít mean I wasnít going to ask other questions. In a way, it was my try at getting back at him for it all. "So tell me what you think about when you get all quiet like that."
He glared at me for a while; I think he was trying to intimidate me. I kept smiling. Smiling, can be such a good defense against things, it can melt hearts, or make people think you know something you donít, it can make you feel confident in the face of the enemy, or make you a popular friend to have. So, I smiled at him, and he cracked.
"I think about the many dawns I have seen, the cities I have seen, and the person...people I have known."
Now that had been an interesting slip. What person? Heíd changed it to people, but there had been someone, someone heíd really loved. Curiouser and curiouser. I tilted my head and raised an eyebrow. "There was someone you just canít forget huh?"
It made me jealous to think about it. The idea that heíd loved someone so much, that over the centuries he couldnít forget this person. I glanced around the beautiful room, it must have been for a special concubine of the harem, the tile was everywhere, gold and green. For a moment, it seemed familiar somehow, and then the sensation was gone.
"Letís get out of here." I said finally, feeling an unaccountable shiver go down my spine. "Lunch is calling my name."
When I looked at him, his eyes were half lidded, and contemplative. He snagged my arm and tugged me close, and I got the feeling that he towered over me again, even though we were nose to nose. "What do you see when you look at these rooms? Do they look familiar? Do you feel as if you have been here before?" His voice had a note of urgency in it that was unfamiliar coming from him.
Without warning another vision swarmed over my mind, and I saw myself draped in silks and filmy gauze lounging in this room, gesturing to a shadow to come closer. There was a golden collar around my neck and the emerald silks that slid over my skin matched the greens of the tiles. I shook my head and it faded, melting into the back of my brain like... a memory... or a dream.
"Iíve probably just seen it in pictures, Iíve never been here before." I shrugged, trying to remain nonchalant in the face of this sudden feeling of familiarity. "Letís go get some lunch, I think your Djinni self is feeling homesick or something."
I took advantage of the hand he still had on my arm, and tugged him from the room. Trying not to break into a run as we left it.
"Heero do you sleep?" We were sitting on the plaza steps, watching the crowds and listening to the tumult of the people around us. Iíd paid about one American dollar for a giant kebab of fish and vegetables, and sat nibbling bits of it off. Heero had gotten a pastry baked with cheese and herbs.
"I sleep, but I do not have to."
"Do you ever dream when you sleep?"
He choked and started to flush a dull red behind the tan of his face. "No, no I never dream." He said quickly, and took a large bite of his pastry, turning his head to watch a veiled figure walk past.
I smiled at his profile, and then outright grinned. "You know Heero, you donít have to admit anything. I know you had something to do with whatever happened last night." I watched as his eyes went wide behind the oval lenses of his sunglasses, and nodded at him. "Iím not stupid, and youíre not as unknowable as you might imagine."
I scooted closer to him until our hips touched, then leaned over and whispered in his ear. "I donít know why you did it, and I donít care. But if you ever mess with my head like that again, I swear to god Iíll throw that bottle with you in it, into the darkest, deepest pit I can find." I leaned back and beamed at him, taking another bite of my kebab.
He had a horrified look on his face that made me want to laugh. Iíd gotten to him that time, and it felt great.
"You are the first human who has ever seen through the illusion to the reality behind it all." He said softly, and looked like he was nearly in awe.
Unable to control it, I laughed. Patting his arm and leaning close once again. "I promise Iíll try not to startle you so much, if... "
"If what?" His eyes narrowed.
"If you give me a bite of your pastry, it looks really good. Iíll even share my kebab if you do."
He smiled at me then, and I knew we were finally coming to understand each other.
By the time we had walked back to our hotel, my feet were killing me. I like to walk, just not for eight hours at a time. After lunch, weíd gone for a stroll along one of the main thoroughfares, talking occasionally about the architecture or people as we passed them by. The sun began to set and I had realized just how long weíd been walking.
The relief of taking off my shoes when we got back to the hotel was so great, I felt like moaning. I collapsed back onto the bed, rolling around for a moment and stretching. It was so nice to be, if not home, then at least comfortable. Heero sat down on the foot of the bed, and I smiled at him. "Would you do me a favor Heero?"
He nodded and my smile widened. "Get me a cold, wet washcloth from the bathroom, please? My feet are aching like thereís no tomorrow. I think it was that last mile that did it."
While he went off to do that, I closed my eyes, and thought of that harem room again. Why had it looked so familiar? And why was that disturbing? Most importantly, how had Heero known what I had felt in that room? My left foot was picked up and lain down again on a warm lap. I opened my eyes to find Heero grabbing my other foot and laying it beside the first. "You donít have to...aaahh... "
There is nothing better then a cold, wet washcloth rubdown on tired, sore feet. I nearly purred when he dug his thumbs into my arches, sending a jolt of pure pleasure and pain straight up my spine. In some ways, a decent foot rub can be better than sex. Judging by the expert handling of my feet, Heero knew that. I couldnít help the steady stream of little moans I gave as he deftly stroked all the pain from my aching feet, gradually he moved up my legs, his hands feeling so good, I couldnít have stopped him if I tried.
When youíre in this kind of situation, itís hard to concentrate on things you should and shouldnít do. Itís especially hard to focus on the things that come out of your mouth when someone is rubbing all the will to move out of your muscles. So when he started asking questions in a soft, almost lilting tone of voice, I answered.
"What did you think of the Palace?" He murmured, grinding the palm of his hand deep into the back of my calf.
"Mmm, very nice, lots of gold... oohh, right there... " His fingers manipulated the tendons running up the back of my legs for a moment. I was melting into the bed, turning into a puddle of satisfied master.
"What did you think of the harem rooms?"
I squirmed for a moment as his hands worked their way back down my legs. "Aahhmmm... Nice... opulent... "
He rolled me over onto my stomach and slipped his hands up under my shirt, the protest dying on my lips as his fingers found every nerve and hit them all at once. I moaned loud and long, loving every minute of it. People would pay a couple hundred bucks an hour for massages like this.
"Do you wonder why you recognized that room?"
I groaned as his hands found another sore spot and worked at it. "Yeah... I wish I knew ... why it... Ahh...looked so familiar... " His hands stopped moving and I moaned in displeasure. It took a few moments for my mind to catch up with what Iíd just said. "Oh no... "
"Your wish is my command."
I turned just in time to see the triumphant smile on his face, right before the hotel room vanished from around me.