Tuesday, April 10, 2018
one night this past winter, when it was deadly cold, Blanche had an especially vivid dream of a particular kind, which she had had before. in this one, she walked into the dream via a tent-like enclosure, curtained off from a larger, dome-like structure. the things she understood were that she was a member of a tribe or clan, that it was deep-winter, and this collective housing structure was how her village set up their seasonal lodging so as to maintain personal privacy while conserving resources for the wider community, such as a large fire pit in the center that kept the dome warm, and served to cook the meals. they dressed in furs and wool, had dreadlocks, seemed to be hunter-gatherers, yet also agrarians. the people seemed to have their own distinctive roles in this society, and the women did their work while the men took care of other responsibilities.
as a young and strong leader, she was returning to her village after having been 'out in the field' for some time (a week or so?), either scouting, taking part in some sacred feminine right-of-passage for the teen women, or both. she was cold, dirty, and stiff from a long week of hard work away from the comforts of home, and treated herself to a luxuriously hot bath in the rudimentary bathhouse before returning to her personal enclosure within the communal space, and diving into her raised platform covered in wool and furs. as her naked skin hit the cool furs, she shivered a bit and settled in for the kind of comfortable sleep she had missed while out on maneuvers. then she was embraced from behind by a rather large man who had been sleeping on the pallet, and been awakened by her arrival under the furs. "You have returned," he growled in his deep voice as he curled his large body around hers, and wrapped her up in his strong arms. she smiled, and settled herself gratefully into his warmth as his hands moved along her clean skin, and he nuzzled his face in her hair.
this man was one of the tribe's best warriors, and a leader of men. they were lovers, and though it was 'her enclosure', she had consented to allow him to stay in it while she was away. she was so tired when she had come in seeking her bed that it had not occurred to her that her lover might be there under the covers, waiting to embrace her, but she was glad to share his warmth, and was happy for his company. he asked after the women's ceremony, and she responded in the broadest of terms, as technically it was none of his business - if the village council had any need for information about any of the young women, it was the older, battle-tested, clan-mothers who answered on their behalf. it was the same for the older men, being responsible for the younger men of an age when it was time for them to leave the relative safety of their mothers' sides, and grow together as a part of the larger community.
warmed by her lover's embrace, she turned onto her back, and stretched her whole body out in a way that indicated she was fully relaxed and happy, and his hands began to stroke her in a way that was more familiar. her skin tingled, and she responded to his attentions by turning towards him in the bed, wrapping her arms and legs around the mass of him, and climbing atop him like he was her mountain. as his pleasure had already begun to rise beneath her, they joined in each other's climax as will lovers who know each other well. this was certainly the best of ways to return to her own bed, her lover, and her larger community.
"what a lovely dream!" thought Blanche, when she woke.
as it so happened, Blanche came down with flu that same winter, and while she was sick, her fever-dreams returned her to this peaceful little village for some traditional healing. this time, she awoke on her pallet-bed, sweating under layers of wool blankets and furs, with several other women in attendance. there was the Eldest - an old, white-haired grandmother who was the main source of information when it came to matters of health and wellness, and her 'daughter' who may not have been a biological child so much as an apprentice to the craft, who was closer in age to Blanche's own mother. there were others attending to her, holding as she did an esteemed place in the tribe, but these were the two by her bedside. there were both cool and warm cloths alternately placed on her aching head, there was hearty soup spooned into her, there were hot baths, thick robes, and lots of sweaty sleep in her furnace of a bed, in her personal enclosure. her lover was obviously elsewhere, probably in the separate tent the men kept, for the duration of her illness, or out hunting. either way, he wasn't much on her mind, until she heard his low voice in hushed conversation with the medicine women.
she gathered that he was wondering how close she was to death, and if he needed to inform her son (who had been fathered by a previous lover that had met his death at the end of an enemy spear). while she had raised her boy to an age where it was now the responsibility of the elder tribesmen to teach him the ways of the men, they had remained close after he moved from her enclosure to one of those the young men his age shared. everyone was worried about her, and pulling for her return to good health. morale was low, and a lot was riding on her recovery, so her lover was seeing what the best course of action was for him to take in order to best prepare for what might come next. he was informed that she was still in her prime, and there was no need to worry anyone - especially her son - over her little illness. the healers had every reason to believe she would be restored to full health in good time, she just needed her rest, that he should tend to his business, and let them tend to theirs. Blanche rolled over in her dream-bed, and fell back to sleep.
when she woke next, she could tell it was night by the sounds in the larger tent - the remains of the evening meals being cleaned up, children being put to bed, adults stretching out around the main fire for a bit of relaxation and socializing before tucking in themselves. she wanted to get out from under her covers and wrap up in a thick robe to join them; she was so tired of lying down and sleeping, but she still felt too weak to even throw the blankets back. then she heard her lover arguing with the Eldest - the medicine woman was telling him to go sleep in the men's tent and leave 'Blanche' alone. he was insisting that he had bathed the hunt off of him, was scrubbed and clean beneath a clean robe, and planned on sleeping under the furs with his woman, no matter what the Eldest thought about it. he decided that whatever risk it was to his own health to bed with her while she was still ill, she needed his strength near to draw from in order to heal herself. she grunted at him disapprovingly, but stepped aside and let him through the curtain when she realized he was not so much arguing with her as he was informing her of his plan.
she managed to open her aching eyes long enough to see him toss his robe on top of the pile of blankets already weighing her down, his skin scrubbed so clean it shone, before he climbed under the furs next to her, and gathered her shivering body into his powerful embrace, tucking her head under his chin as he hugged her tight. she curled into him, and whimpered despite herself. he rocked her gently, and whispered soft endearments in her ear, while she let herself be comforted by his warmth, and his gentle care for her momentary fragility. there's nothing quite so sweet as a big bear of a man who can be sensitive and kind when that is what's called for, she thought. he held her through the night, and the warmth of his body drew the chill from hers. in the morning, when he saw her smile up at him from beneath the covers, he asked if her body was sore, and skillfully massaged her muscles until she was limp with relief, and then transitioned to a more sensual kind of touch.
as he slid his hands over her pliant flesh, the Eldest poked her head in the curtain to ask how 'Blanche' was doing, and if she was ready to bathe or eat. he growled at the old woman to leave them be, and she scolded him for being selfish with his lover's body when she was too weak to resist his advances, but she managed to cut them both off with a command of her own that she was resting comfortably with her lover, and would let the Eldest know when she was ready for the older woman's deft administrations. settling back down under the covers, she sighed at the effort that small act took, and looked to her man to snuggle up with her again, and lend her some more of his abundant strength. it didn't take long before they were back to arousing each other, and as the heat built up between them, her lover asked if she was sure she was ready for him, and suggested they love each other in such a way that would allow her to rest comfortably and take her pleasure without having to exert herself in any way. she purred beneath him as she positioned herself in the way he suggested, and was rewarded with a long, slow, ride that left him breathless and spent, while she felt exhilarated and energized.
she called softly to her women (whom she knew were nearby) to help her out of bed while her lover slept, and she let them hold her up for the dizziness of her long week in bed, while she slipped into a robe and was helped to the baths, cleaned up, and enjoyed some more of the healers' delicious and fortifying soup. with the help of her beloved Elder, she strolled slowly through the smaller herb gardens that would soon need to be tilled for spring planting, and as they looked up at the noise of a group of youths running and shouting in the distance, they saw her son pause in his revelry to acknowledge that it was his dear mother that he saw standing up and walking around, then waved vigorously before running off again with the rest of the young men. she was definitely feeling better. weak and tired, but better, thanks again to her dream-lover for sharing his warmth and affection with her.