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The ache in her head was starting to make Freya feel distinctly nauseous. Oblivious to her discomfort, the merchant in front of her droned on and on about his dispute with his neighbour. Freya suppressed a groan of frustration. She wondered for the tenth time that hour how Ewen managed to maintain his composure in his dealings with the people of the kingdom and their petty squabbles. It had been five days since the dark smoke to the east had been sighted. Five long days that Freya had been ruling in her husbands stead.

The lengthening shadows in the Great Hall indicated the end of another long day. Alone at the head table, Freya led the evening toast as tradition required. As the serving girls brought in her evening meal, Freya wondered where Ewen was. Although he had been her husband for less than two weeks, the prospect of him not returning concerned her. Suddenly the weight of her position weighed so heavily on her that Freya could barely draw breath. Ewen had to return.

The day dawned grey and misty. Freya's mood matched it as she entered the Great Hall.  Already the line of people waiting to see her and to have her hear their cases stretched deep into the reception room before the Great Hall. It had been a restless night for Freya and the headache still pained her. Composing her face she sat in the throne and began to hear the complaints.

The hours dragged until suddenly a commotion caused the proceedings in the Great Hall to come to a halt. Outside Freya heard a scuffle before an armed man entered the Hall. He immediately dropped to one knee in front of Freya.

'My lady,' he said breathlessly. 'The king has returned!'

Freya felt the blood rush to her head with relief. Gesturing to the armed soldiers on either side of her she stood up.

As she left the Great Hall, the crowds parted for her and followed her out into the courtyard.  In front of her the great gates were slowly being opened fully to allow for the great group of armed men to enter. At their head was the tall figure of her husband, his face covered completely by his chain mail. Freya stood still at the top of the stairs waiting for the men to enter the courtyard completely.

Ewen drew closer. His great war horse restless in the confined space. Lifting his hand up, he removed his chain mail helmet. For a brief moment Freya caught a glimpse of his expression before his face assumed it's usual expressionless mask.

'My lady,' he said in greeting.

'My Lord,' Freya replied as was customary.

Expecting him to dismount, Ewens next words stopped Freya's heart in her chest.

'The King of the East is dead,' he declared.

For a split second Freya hesitated. It was not every day that one was informed of the death of one's father.

'Long Live the King', she responded, her face never leaving Ewens as she curtsied deeply to him.

All around her men repeated her words and bowed their knees to Ewen.

Keeping her face impassive, Freya waited for the groomsman to assist Ewen to dismount. She noticed his limp as he walked the short distance towards her but maintained her composure.

'Welcome home husband,' she said softly enough for only him to hear. A brief smile touched his lips as Ewen entered his Great Hall as King of two kingdoms.

It was much later before Freya had an opportunity to be alone with her husband. There was much to plan as an entourage from the east would arrive on the morrow. Although Ewen was now the rightful King of two kingdoms there was much that needed to be resolved. The war drew closer now and strong allies were critical. Freya felt the weight of this new responsibility heavily on her and she wondered how Ewen was really feeling.

Alone in their chamber, Ewen struggled to remove his breeches. Unsure if she should help him or not, Freya waited until he was finally lying on their bed before she spoke.

'Shall I examine your wound husband?' She enquired softly.

At his nod she drew closer, noticing the bloodstained rags that covered it. The wound was in the middle of his left thigh and had been tightly bound by the army doctor. Freya was suddenly concerned about the extent of the injury. She was relieved to see that under the rags the wound was starting to close. The edges were pink, not red and the smell was not putrid. Freya felt a rush of relief as she reached towards the bowl of water to clean the wound before she rebound it with a clean rag.

With that task done, Freya suddenly became aware that Ewen was naked on the bed. As the silence lengthened, she looked up at Ewen. His eyes were fixed on her intently. Unable to hold his stare, Freya looked down again. Ewens chest and his small nipples entranced her. She reached out hesitantly and stroked the line of his abdominal muscles. Sweeping upwards she stopped at his nipple and hesitantly touched it. Ewens gasp startled her. Before she could withdraw her hand, he trapped it.

'Don't stop,' he said hoarsely.

Emboldened, Freya continued her journey across his chest. A fine trail of goosebumps followed her progress. She moved her hand lower still towards his belly button and the line of dark hair that led even lower.

Ewen groaned, startling Freya. Once again his hand grasped hers and led it lower still towards his manhood. Freya had never looked upon a man so closely before. He was so much bigger than she had imagined. It was little wonder that she had felt so much pain when he entered her. Ewen moved her hand down to touch him. His manhood was much softer than she had imagined. It contrasted with the dark, wiry hair around it. Freya noticed the drop of liquid at the end. She touched it with her finger and spread it over the tip of him. Ewen groaned again.

'Take off your shift,' he ordered hoarsely.

Freya stood up fluidly and pulled the shift over her head. She took a step forward and lay on top of Ewen on the bed. Slowly at first, she started moving up and down on him. She felt the hardness of his erection underneath her and his heavy breathing as she moved.

'Straddle me,' Ewen whispered hoarsely.

Freya stopped moving and sat up slowly. Her legs on either side of Ewens waist. She knelt above him as she guided him into her. Slowly, slowly she sat down on him, gasping at the depth of him in her. It was painful but as she moved it became easier for her to control. Under her Ewen groaned again, his breathing heavy and hoarse. Freya reached out her hands and gently touched his nipple. He groaned again and she felt his movements quicken as he reached the end. One last deep thrust and he was finished in her.

Freya lay forward onto Ewen. His arms were around her and his one hand played gently with her dark hair that fell over both of them.

Neither Freya nor Ewen spoke. They both knew that too much had changed for words to be enough.

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