Content warning: mayyyybe implied heavy flirtation?
Phillipa sat in Professor Valerian’s office, very carefully picking the rose hips from her hair and popping the seeds out of them, dropping the roses into a tall bottle.
“There was a student,” the Professor told her, “a few years back. Nikita. A similar Change to yours – he grew grapes. I know that he and his Keeper made wine from his grapes, but it was, for them, an intimate affair.”
Keeper. She had heard that word a few times in the last couple weeks, but she hadn’t quite gotten the gist of it yet. Her new friends seemed to shy away from the topic whenever she brought it up, and so did others, people in class who were so forthcoming about other things, other Eighth Cohorts who were suddenly shy and not talking at all… “Keeper?” Maybe her Mentor would tell her something.
The Professor pursed her lips. “His girlfriend,” she qualified. “Shiva. You know Efrosin? His half-sister.” She reached over and carefully plucked one of Phillipa’s berries. “It can be, I’m told, an immensely intimate experience.”
Phillipa blushed hotly. Intensely intimate… It was as if the professor was reading her mind, her daydreams and fantasies. “I can imagine?” she offered cautiously. “I mean, this is part of me, right?” She stripped the fruit and offered the meaty bits to the older woman, studying her Mentor’s lips and not her eyes.
“It is,” the professor agreed, licking the berry from Phillipa’s fingers. “I wonder what would happen if we planted the seeds?”
Now, she could manage to look her teacher in her amazingly-green eyes. “Let’s find out.”
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