Ko-telsu Kahli-fi, by julie
Disclaimer: Star Trek situations, characters, and name are all owned by Paramount. This work is non-commercial, not for sale or profit, and may not be sold or reproduced for commercial purposes.
AN: May be part of a larger story.
Soval of Vulcan was weary. The journey to Vulcan had seemed long this time, longer than it had ever seemed before. That he was travelling to his wedding made things no better. The time had come; he had put it off as long as possible but now it was time to take a mate again. It was a time of celebration and an end to the lonely existence he had come to know.
At the end of his first marriage to T’Lan he had not felt the need to rush into another bonding. Although it was difficult for a Vulcan male like himself to live without a life partner, he had come to appreciate the freedom of the ensuing years. A brief, colourful period in his life had followed when he met Sylea, though the promise of the contentment that relationship had offered had never come to be. He still allowed his mind to wander through the days they had spent, conversations, intimate moments…they caused him pain, always too quick and strong even for his experienced suppression techniques. Yet he still clung to the memories that remained so strong and vivid.
The arrangements had been made for the ceremony by his family. The ceremonial grounds had been prepared and the feast arranged to celebrate the union. T’Ras was a logical choice for him, widowed as he was, an accomplished scientist, well read and of impeccable reputation. Her bio file had been sent to him a long while before among others but he had been diverted by other interests. The chance meeting with a Cultural Attache for the Garra Tau system had changed him fundamentally. Sylea should have been everything he would avoid but she had won him, all too easily it seemed. He had been astonished to discover that she was a hybrid, but her unique fusion of the GarTau and Vulcan culture had proved intriguing and appealing in so many ways. A stabbing pain through his heart made him pull himself together. Today he faced the end of loneliness but with it came the death of hope.
He took a handful of the herbs from the waiting dish and sprinkled them on the fire pot. He needed to meditate, the wound still festered inside; he needed a little more healing time to purge himself of the deep longing. In fact, the healer was probably the person to see while he was here, although, how would he explain his malady which seemed far too emotional?
The bonding ceremony was to take place the following morning; robes were hung to the air ready for the following day. The day had been spent renewing old acquaintances and meeting family members not seen for many years. His first meeting with his intended mate had been a civilized affair. They were both taking a mate for the sake of propriety, she for the security it afforded and he for his physical needs. But he had no need to complain, she had been a pleasant companion and they would not need to live together. There was a comforting logic to the conclusion of this chapter in his life.
He felt her presence before he saw her. The familiar tingling of his skin when she was present. Straining his eyes into the darkness of the Vulcan night, he detected the small movement. He went outside into the garden where the scents of the night assaulted his senses. He saw her emerge from the shrubbery in the starlight, the familiar curves of her body silhouetted against T’khut. All the old sensations took hold and only a conscious
effort kept him from reaching for her.
“Have you come to my wedding Sylea? How predictably inappropriate of you.” The bitter sarcasm was there before he could control himself. “Have you come to rub salt on my wound once more?”
The use of an old Earth expression seemed to amuse her. “You have been on Earth far too long Soval!”
“Why have you come?” He was not in the mood to indulge her whims, he told himself.
The silence seemed almost palpable as she struggled with the words of logic that she had practiced on her journey: the words that would make sense without conveying the emotional turmoil inside. They were all lost to her now. What should she say, what right had she to say anything! That she had missed him and that the news of his bonding had hit her so hard and made her finally see the truth? Was she now too late?
“I heard you were going to be married ....” She began “You are going to bond...?” She could not finish, the emotional onslaught was too overpowering.
Watching her struggle was almost his undoing; a clawing beast seemed to have grown inside him, raking at his resolve and threatening to tear him to pieces. He turned away from her.
“All of our lessons in suppression have been wasted I see.” He knew the words were cruel but they had developed a life of their own. “I suspect there has been little practice this past year.” He felt stronger and turned to her.
“It can mean only little to you Sylea, you rejected me after all.” The words were like a shield now, the cruelty of the ending and being starved of her for so long cooled his desperate longing for her.
“I cannot marry you Soval, I’m sorry I should never have agreed to it.” The words echoed in his mind “I cannot go through the Pon Farr with you - I don’t want to be raped every seven years, not even by you!”
“It means a great deal to me.” She bit back the words of love that were ready to leap off of her tongue at any second, for now was not the time. “I am sorry that I hurt you”.
“I do not feel pain, as you should know.”
“I needed time .....”
“I gave you time. I have no more to give.” Again the words got away from him.
“So you are bonding now because you have to?”
“It is no concern of yours.”
“You don’t have to. You can go to Gol, there are services for unbonded males.”
He stared at her his brow furrowed. Somehow she had closed the space between them and grasped his hand, hope in her eyes.
“Why?” he asked simply. “Why would I do that? Why would you want me to do that?” He was incredulous.
She was in his arms before he knew what was happening. “I still love you,” she murmured. The scent of her threw him off balance; he touched her hair, her face. With a huge effort of will he stepped back pushing her away from him.
“Would you be my wife then Sylea?” He asked “Or do you just wish to come to me when you should choose to. The Pon Farr is going to happen, nothing has changed.” She shook her head miserably.
“You still love me.” This seemed to be more of statement than a question.
“Nothing has changed,” he said simply.
She seemed to melt back into the darkness; he could no longer discern her from the dark outlines of the night garden. He remembered the garden on Earth 4 years before when they had become one for the first time, the scents and the sounds whirled in his mind before disappearing into the air like mist. He felt the raw pain in his chest and realised that his time was upon him. There were no more choices.
The morning dawned clear. The ceremony would take place in the early morning to avoid the searing heat of the Vulcan day. The guests dressed in their ceremonial wear gathered at the ground. In the distance the sounds of the marriage parties grew louder as they approached. An air of celebration always filled the air at these occasions. Yet T’Pol, waiting among the other guests, felt that this was not so happy an occasion for the groom. She had sensed from him little anticipation for the approaching nuptials. It was duty and need and, therefore, it seemed little enough to celebrate. Perhaps the joining of two houses and the combining of possessions would be the more logical description. Both of them had spent too much time with humans she thought to herself, the romance was missing and therefore it lacked any kind of thrill. An emotional indulgence as Soval would have said. She had been a little concerned about him of late although they did not discuss such things she was sure this marriage did not really appeal to him. He had been more sombre and bitter over the last year. She had suspected his relationship with the Tao Attaché had been the cause. Her absence from his life for the last year had affected him. Not many could see it, but she could.
They were here. Soval moved forward to strike the gong in the time honoured tradition. The ceremony had begun.
“What you are about to see comes down from the time of the Beginning. This is the Vulcan heart, this is the Vulcan soul -- this is our way.” The Matriarch intoned the ancient words: “Kali Farr!”
“Ko-telsu Kali-fi!” The cry surprised everyone. The male challenge was
known of, but rare. A female challenge!
“What is the meaning of this?” the Matriarch, T’Sel, cried. “Come forward”
“I am here.” Sylea took a few steps forward to face the Matriarch and was painfully aware of the silent guests around her.
“You are not of this world how come you to make this challenge.”
“I am Sylea, daughter of Sarbok, son of Sumach.” She paused. “I too belong to Vulcan and I challenge for Soval”
“Why do you challenge?”
“I have prior claim to his affections and I am willing to fight for him.” Finally she looked into his eyes. “I would be willing to die for him.”
“Should you prevail, are you willing to become the property of this man?”
“I am.” She willed him to feel the desperation in her and her love for him.
“Soval, what say you to this?”
Soval was still reeling; that she had done this was unbelievable and defied any kind of logic. As the Plak Tau approached his emotional barriers were beginning to fail and the joy of her presence and her courage were exhilarating.
“What she says is true T’Sel. I had thought our association had ended, it appears I may have misjudged the situation.”
“The Ko-telsu has not happened before in my life time. I ask if T’Ras is willing to fight for this man.”
Sylea hadn’t even stopped to consider her rival in her passion, now she felt ashamed of herself not considering the position of this woman. She had come here to be married only to be abandoned. T’Ras, tall and dignified, watching the proceedings had reacted to the interruption with the same surprise as everyone else. Instinctively she had weighed up the situation logically, this woman was much younger than she, stronger, no doubt. Soval’s eyes were fixed hungrily on the younger woman with the onslaught of the Pon Farr and his emotional control failing, there was no doubt where his choice would lie. The marriage had been a convenience as were most on Vulcan and she took no slight over the challenge. Whatever was between these two was not her concern and she wished no part in it.
“I renounce any claim on him.” She announced with all her dignity, turnedand left the arena followed silently by the other clan members.
“Soval, do you wish to take this woman as your rightful property?”
The fires were beginning to consume him; he reached out with his mind to find the cool calmness of hers reaching back for him.
“Yes” The word was hard to verbalise. He was desperate for her, he needed her now!
“Touch me now, my love,” his thoughts finding hers.
“Soon my love,” she spoke into his mind. “It will be very soon.”
T’Sel initiated the meld and they intoned the words of the ancient ritual.
Setting the bond finally she indicated to the rest of the guests to leave. “Pon Farr!” she cried. It was time.
Without allowing him to touch her Sylea led Soval to the waiting temple for the final consummation of their marriage. By now he was trembling with desire and struggling to hold back.
The terror was pushing its way back into her mind as the infernal memory that had sickened her so much reasserted itself in her mind. She had been where she shouldn’t have been. Her cousin, T’Sai, had been so kind to her when she came to Vulcan, she had taken the poor motherless child under her wing and had become a surrogate mother, from Sylea’s point of view anyway. To be told that she could not go to see her was not what she had wanted to hear so she had gone anyway. She was not to know that it was her husband’s time and he had come home for his wife. She saw Torvac first, he had looked so strange when he entered, usually so placid he seemed to have become a raging animal. Caught with no where to run she hid in a cupboard in the darkest corner. She could hear his ragged breathing from her refuge. Through a small hole in the door she saw T’Sai had entered and was looking directly at where she was hiding. She had felt her husband’s need and came to meet him - she had also seen the small scurrying figure fleeing for shelter.
“My wife.” Torvac had barely got the words out and grabbed for her, pulling her to him for he was desperate for her.
“No Torvac, wait ......”
The perceived rejection infuriated him and he uttered an enraged cry. The fury of his assault was terrifying. Sylea didn’t know how long she sat in silent terror in the darkness. At length the door was opened and she was hauled out by T’Sai.
“Quick he is sleeping, go now.”
“But T’Sai ......”
The door was closed and Sylea ran. It had been some weeks before she had seen T’Sai again. No words were ever said. No explanations sought, it was as if it had never happened - apart from the nightmares!
Now she knew about the Pon Farr, now she knew the effects, now she knew what her intrusion had caused. Now her horror was mixed with shame.
The urge to run had never been stronger, but if she ran he would die.
Left alone now she allowed him to touch her. Their paired fingers touching gently, she could feel the thrill of him now. She also felt his fight for control, he had felt her fear and was attempting to curb his passions. As their fingers caressed her desire began to escalate. Their fingers interlaced before moving on to feel his hands, his arms. Palms met sending bolts of electricity through them both. Their fingers sought the intimate places on each others faces for the meld and the fires consumed them both. In desperation he had torn her clothes to get to her and the first coupling was fast and intense. Within minutes he reached for her again and as the couplings slowed the fear faded, just pure ecstasy remained, followed by warm satisfaction.
After four days of sexual activity they were drained and sleepy, slightly bruised but entirely content. Only one question remained.
“How did you find out about my marriage, my wife,” he whispered
“T’Pol.” Sylea turned to nestle closer to him. “She knew all along.”
Soval was silent. How T’Pol could have ascertained his feelings was a mystery, but he made a mental note to let her know his appreciation.
A hand of people have made comments
I am so glad you decided to put your story here Julie! I really like it and as your beta, I feel like a proud mom to see it here.
Julie, I've just recently begun to explore Soval's Annex, and I must say that I'm glad that I broadened my horizons. This story was so intense, and yet you kept everyone in character. I've never read a fanfic where all of the characters were Vulcan. You have given me a glimpse into an alien culture here... and I liked it. This reads like a sequel to a preceeding story, but I don't see anything else under your byline on this site. Have you written the story of Soval meeting and falling in love with Sylea and posted it somewhere else, or is the story still in your head? If it's not written, I beg you to do so. I'd love to read it.
Thank you for your very kind words, Distracted. This is my very first post EVER and I was nervous about it. You could say that I have written this upside down - I haven't quite finished the beginning yet! I think I will get on with it now!!
Thanks to dear Linda and Myst who beta'd and tidied it up for me.
Goody goody! I'll be watching and waiting. : )
Very interesting story. I always found Soval quite intriguing. Any more insight on Vulcans and their culture is bound to be compelling. Nice characterizations here. I'd like to read more. Good job!