Tucker continued to think for a couple of moments, he could try and continue on to earn more riches than even the royal family had to offer. It was a very tempting thought but he was holding onto the hand of Jessica who was still on his back. He felt that her hand was very cold but he could also feel a little movement indicating that she was still alive. He knew that he didn't have much time before she died and the fact of the matter was that he couldn't have both Jessica and the treasure. His decision was going to effect the rest of his life in more ways than he could imagine.
"So what's your decision?" asked the Being. He had been standing there patiently and he even had his arms crossed.
Tucker didn't say another word and began to run. He headed down the right tunnel and towards what he believed to be the fastest route to the exit. He had wanted Three Man's Treasure more than he would like to admit but he wanted Jessica by his side even more. If it had not been for her he would never have gotten this close and most likely he would have been dead in some ditch.
He ran as fast as his legs could carry him ad although he was fatigued he refused to slow down. He could hear Jessica's breath become more and more shallow but he couldn't see that her hair had turned completely white. Her eyes were closed as she was clinging onto her last thread of life.
After a couple of minutes Tucker began to see something that he thought was sunlight. The thought did cross his mind that it was a trap but right now he didn't care, all he wanted to do was get out as soon as he could and save Jessica. He didn't know how long he had but he felt that it was better that he didn't know.
Unfortunately before Tucker could actually make it to the exit there was still one more challenge that he had to overcome. A head of him was a rope bridge that spanned across a relatively short chasm. Just beyond was the exit and Tucker could actually see the evening sun shining through it. The chasm was quite narrow but still too wide for anyone to jump from one way to the other.
The bridge itself looked very weak since it had been there for countless years. Tucker felt that if he ran across it the bridge would collapse sending both himself and Jessica down into the empty darkness below. It even looked like it would collapse with only a small amount of weight on it but despite all of this he knew that he had to risk it. If he did nothing Jessica would die but if he did try he was putting them both at risk. To him it was a very simple decision from there.
Tucker took a deep breath as he placed his foot on the first wooden step of the bridge. He heard a loud creaking sound which sent a shiver right down his spine. It did make him somewhat reluctant to carry on but with Jessica's life on the line it forced him to keep going and not turn back.
With great care Tucker began to walk across the bridge. The temptation of running was great but the risks were too high. Could hear every creak and groan as he walked across and he felt that the bridge could give way at any moment. He was trying not to look down as he knew that it would cause him to panic. He needed to show bravery and valour, two traits that he thought that he would need to become a knight. Right now however he didn't feel like a knight but rather somewhat a coward. He couldn't imagine the knights of the old tales being scared in this manner. He thought that they were brave in any situation and that a walk across a bridge like this would barely even grab their attention.
Every step seemed like a mile for Tucker as he thought that the bridge below him would give way at any moment. He even tried to speak to Jessica but she was unresponsive, he feared that she was dead. He refused to believe this and he kept going despite any fears for his own safety.
By the last step he thought that he had made it to the other side but just before he could step off the bridge gave way. Rather than falling into the abyss below Tucker had just been able to grab onto the edge. This saved him from falling but he could only use his one arm to prevent himself from falling. The other was to make sure that Jessica didn't fall. She had no independent grip on him so if he let go of her she would fall.
The weight of both himself and Jessica along with all his armour and weapons was almost too much for Tucker's one arm. He could feel great pain in his arm as it strained under the weight that it was forced to hold.
"Not now," said Tucker with some despair. "I can't get this far and fail!" His determination was giving him strength that he didn't even know that he had. It still wasn't enough to lift him out.
He did see one way of saving himself and that was simply to allow Jessica to fall. Without her he would be a little lighter and he would have his second arm to pull himself. Despite this it was something that he wasn't willing to do. He couldn't bear to think that he was responsible for her death. This made him even more determined to get them both out, he knew that their quest was more or less at its finale. He wanted to at least go back to Morgan with Jessica.
Unfortunately for Tucker despite his heart and determination his arm just didn't have the strength that it needed to pull him up and he lost his grip. All Tucker could do as he lost his grip was quietly apologise to Jessica as they both began to fall down into the abyss below. The only comfort that he had was the fact that they still had each other. He did close his eyes as he waited for the end to come, he just hoped that it would be quick and Jessica at least didn't suffer.
The next thing Tucker felt was a gentle breeze striking his body. He also found that he was in a lying position. As he opened his eyes he was greeted by the morning sun and he could hear the singing of birds. Quickly he sat up and began to look at his hands, they seemed to be the same as before and he could still feel objects with them.
Tucker saw that he had been lying close to a tree and when he looked down to his right he saw that Jessica was right next to him. Much to his relief she was her usual eight feet in height but more importantly she looked healthy again. He wasn't sure whether she was dead or simply asleep. Quickly he grabbed onto her and gently began to shake her a little in an attempt to wake her up. Slowly Jessica's eyes began to open as she also sat up. It brought more joy than he could ever imagine to see her alive.
"Hey Tucker what's up?" asked Jessica in her usually bubbly voice. She even stretched her arms but as she did she felt Tucker give her a hug which did catch her by surprise but she didn't mind. "I thought I was the hugger."
"Jessica you're alright," replied Tucker as a tear rolled down his face. "I thought that I'd lost you forever."
"No you're not that lucky." She then hugged him back and he could feel her warm and loving embrace. To him she was one in a million and if he could help it he would stay by her side until the end of time itself. The hug lasted a few moments and it also gave Jessica a warm feeling inside.
"Please you have to tell me, what is the last thing you remember?" There was a small amount of distress in his voice.
"Let me see." She took a moment so that she could think clearly. Her joyous smile seemed to fade as the memories came flooding back. "I remember going into the chamber where the second test was and I lost my powers and shrank until I was petite. We made our way through the puzzles but I began to die but we couldn't turn back. I don't remember much after that but I remember you fighting something that looked like me. Then you carried me away and I can't remember after that."
"Ok so it definitely wasn't a dream." At first he had thought that his experience during the second test had been a dream but since Jessica confirmed his memories he knew that it had happened. He gave a sigh as he began to explain what happened after that, Jessica sat there in amazement as she listened to every word. She couldn't believe that she was so close to death and what she couldn't believe even more was the fact that Tucker had willingly given up the opportunity to find the location of the third test for her life. She knew that he wasn't lying to her, over their years together she could always tell when he was lying to her but she could see that he was not lying now.
"So you did all of that to save me?" She was still in some disbelief over what she was hearing.
"Yes and I would do it all over again for you in a heartbeat. It was pointless having that treasure if I didn't have you there to share it with." The next thing he felt was Jessica's warm lips come into contact with his cheek. It was the nicest feeling that he had ever experienced and in a way he wished that it could last a little longer but it was only a moment but it would last a lifetime.
"Thank you Tucker, you're my knight in shining armour." She gave him a big smile and he couldn't help but feel happy with what was going on. "Now shall we find some breakfast, I don't know about you but I'm starving."
Jessica stood up to her full height and began to pick some berries and other fruits from the nearby trees. Some were a little out of reach so she had to increase her height so that she could reach them. She also knew which ones were safe to eat and which ones were poisonous. She had done her research before leaving Morgan since she knew that they would most likely have to live off the fruits of the land.
Although both Jessica and Tucker still had food they felt that it was best that they used the food from the trees first since they had a long trip back to Morgan. For these fruits thankfully Jessica didn't try to cook them since Tucker knew that cooking wasn't one of her skills. She had tried in the past but even she knew that it wasn't the best of ideas.
One thing that Tucker did like was the fact that he was having to look up at her again. It made him feel that things were finally back to the way that they were. No longer was Jessica small and dying, she was her old tall and strong self and he wouldn't trade it away for anything in the world. He was just glad that she was still with him and just the thought of losing her was more than he could bear.
A short time later Jessica and Tucker sat next to each other as they ate the fruit that Jessica had collected. She stayed as small as she could so that she didn't need to eat as much. Unfortunately even at her smallest she ate much more than the average man but thankfully she had collected more than enough fruit.
"So I guess we're going home then?" asked Jessica with a small amount of disappointment in her voice. She knew how much this quest meant to Tucker and she was sad to see it end. "At least we've had a grand adventure and a decent story to tell the family back in Morgan." She was trying to sugar coat the situation but she could already see Tucker's disappoint from where she was standing.
"I-I guess you're right." For the sake of it he took the map out from his satchel and took a look at it. For anything it was to see the best route back to Morgan. Much to his surprise he could see a line appear out of ink on the map. It started at where they were standing and moved across the paper until it reached a location just outside of Calf Heath which was on the South East coast of Angleland. He stood there in disbelief at what he was seeing. "By the gods, Jessica you won't believe this!"
"What is it?" She moved herself so that she was behind Tucker. This was so that she had a better look at the map. She too could see that a marker had appeared which basically pointed them to the location of the next test. Underneath the map they could both see writing appear. They both stood there a gasped. "How is this possible? You said yourself, you chose to leave the test rather than finding the next location."
"That's what I thought." He took a closer look at the writing and since he knew that Jessica couldn't read very well he thought that it was best to read it out loud. "Congratulations traveller. By sacrificing what you desire and ultimately your life you have passed the test. Your reward is the location of the third and final test. Your quest has not yet come to an end, be wary, there will be those who will try to lead you astray."
"Wow that's amazing." She was a little disappointed that they weren't going back home but she felt overwhelming joy for Tucker. He was willing to sacrifice everything to save her life and now he was getting his reward.
"You're telling me." He was trying to mask the joy in his voice but he was failing miserably at this. He was getting a little over excited but Jessica didn't mind, it was not the first time that she had seen him like this and she doubted that it would be the last. "We can still find the treasure and make ourselves insanely rich."
"That's great Tucker." She was having to look down at him again and he looked up to her in more than one way. To the both of them it just seemed right with this height difference although many would call it grossly wrong. From the moment they met this is what they had known and anything else would have been wrong. She did further increase her size until she was at her maximum, she lowered her hand for Tucker step onto. "We better get going then or else we'll never get there."
"You took the words right out of my mouth."
With no hesitation whatsoever Tucker stepped onto Jessica's hand and allowed the gentle giantess to lift him onto her shoulder and wrap a single strand of hair around him. She was taller than the trees by now and for Jessica this felt natural to her as well. Whenever she was at her smallest size she still stood out but she also felt like she was trying to deny who she truly was. When she was her true size she truly felt like herself but all too often she remembered how people would react about her size. Even when she was a little girl people were terrified of her size and often called her a monster. That's one reason why she was so attached to Tucker. Despite everything he was the only one who had treated her like a human being and because of that she would always be at his side, even if she knew that she was on a fool's errand.
The pair did enjoy the rays of the morning sun, after everything that they had been through it was nice for the both of them. Tucker did wish that he could draw the view from Jessica's shoulder but unfortunately he wasn't artistic in the slightest. It was one thing that she was a little disappointed about.
There was one place that Jessica did really want to visit and that was Royal City. It was by far the most majestic in all of Angleland and was also the seat of the royal family. Currently the throne was occupied by King Percy Kent, the third of his name. He was a relatively young king who had been in power since his late father also named Percy passed away after a brief illness. The realm had been relatively stable since he had come to power with nothing out of the ordinary taking place and no power struggles. There had been no real test to his rule yet. He was married to Queen Valerie who had come from a powerful family to the east of the realm. They had been betrothed since before they were teenagers and they seemed to love each other very much.
When Jessica was a little girl she would fantasise about going to Royal City and seeing the King and Queen. She had always wanted to bow to them and also to compliment the Queen on her dress. In these dreams she always imagined that the King and Queen were giants, even compared to her since they were the highest order in the realm. She knew that it was just a silly little fantasy, the only person that she had ever had to look up to was Gwen and she had no idea where she was.
Whenever Gwen was around Jessica would always feel nervous, it was most likely because she literally had no idea what was going to happen. Gwen's size manipulation abilities were limitless and with the fact that she didn't seem to care too much about anything Jessica didn't know what the demi-goddess was going to do next. She was just glad that Gwen wasn't around, she didn't know that Gwen was actually still around but was just so small that she could no longer be seen by the naked eye.
After a few hours of walking Jessica decided to have a rest at the banks of the River Red. She even took a chance of a nice cooling bath because she thought that it had been too long since she had last had a bath. This did mean taking her dress off but she didn't mind Tucker seeing her naked. It was nothing that he hadn't seen before and she completely trusted him to be mature about the whole situation.
Tucker had decided to have a little more practice with Juggernaut but while in the corner of his eye he could see Jessica bathing in the river. The water was deep enough for her to sit in and bathe herself. He couldn't see pelvic area but he could see her naked breasts with ease. Not too often he had seen her breasts but when he saw them he couldn't take his eyes off them. They seemed to be just the right size for her body since he didn't like it when women had breasts that were larger than they should be. They looked firm but he thought that there would be some softness to them.
He could also see some of the muscles in her body. She didn't look to be overly muscular but the hundreds of miles of walking and her life working on the farm had given her an impressive body. She probably didn't realise how beautiful she actually was because she had always seen herself as a monster. Her body had always been a cause for her grief but Tucker thought that it was an object of beauty. He could see the cool water running down her body and he could feel himself having a man reaction to this.
From where she was sitting Jessica at first didn't notice him but after a couple of minutes he could see him looking. Rather than being annoyed she smiled and looked towards him. She even signalled for him to come to her. At first Tucker pretended that he hadn't seen her and tried to act that he only noticed when she signalled him. Jessica knew better but she did keep her quiet about it.
"What is it Jessica?" asked Tucker as he approached her. He was walking in a manner that he thought would hide his erection but Jessica could still just about see it and once again she kept quiet about it.
"Oh nothing really," replied Jessica in a playful voice. "I just thought you would want to have a closer look." There was a mischievous smile on her face and Tucker knew that she was up to something.
"I wasn't looking." He tried to make up this lie to try and make it sound like he wasn't a pervert.
"Tucker you're a man that is good at many things but lying isn't one of them. I told you before that you don't have to try and hide it. We've been friends for too long and I doubt that I'll ever be disgusted by you." She then stretched her hand towards him and placed it on the bank just in front of him. "Now hop on so that I can give my brave hero the reward that he deserves."
Tucker didn't really know what was going to happen and with a small amount of caution he did step onto her hand and quickly he felt himself be lifted up. He was soon at her angelic face and her smile was still there for him to see. He could feel his heart racing as he knew that something was going to happen.
The next thing that Tucker saw was Jessica's warm, soft lips come right to his face and she kissed him. They had kissed before but those were merely friendship kisses where this one felt different, they could both feel ecstasy that neither of them had felt before and for Jessica in particular it felt joy. It was like she was finally doing something that she had always wanted to do. She had told Tucker that she felt more to him than a mere friend and this was her way of showing it.
Both of them were lost in their own world and neither of them saw a small boat floating by. The occupant was a single fisherman who just stared at what he was seeing. He didn't notice where he was going and was simply fixated at looking at the naked giantess sitting in the river.
The kiss lasted for a minute or so and when Jessica stopped it she continued to smile at him. It felt natural for her to do something like this and she could see Tucker was left completely stunned by what happened. He stared at her and for a few moments there was nothing but absolute silence. Jessica began to fear that the kiss had ruined their friendship and that he would want to continue the quest without her.
"Tucker are you alright?" asked Jessica. Her smile faded as her fear took over. She brought him a little closer to her so that she could see him better. She could see that he was still in a state of shock. She even thought that he might be stuck this way and that was something that she knew was silly.
"T-That was something else," stuttered Tucker as he was lost for words. He was trying to make reason of the feelings that he had just felt. It was like a volcano had erupted within his mind.
"I'm sorry if you didn't like it. I thought that it would show you how thankful I am that you saved me. And also to show just how much I love you, maybe in a deeper way than you might like to think."
"You don't need to be sorry Jessica. It's just a little hard to take in, I don't think you've ever kissed me like that before."
"Did you like it?" There was much caution in her voice and she still feared rejection. She held her breath in expectation.
"Yes it was very... pleasant." He was still looking for the right words to say. The situation could go either way right now.
"Do you mind if I do it again?" This was the difference maker for her. If he accepted she knew what it would mean.
"That would be enjoyable." He was still a little lost for words but before he could say anything else he felt Jessica's lips come into contact with his face once again. They were so large that they covered his entire face, it was a little hard for him to breathe but he still felt safe with her.
Jessica's lips felt like moist cushions coming into contact with his face and at no point did he want the kiss to stop. For Jessica she had been practicing for this moment for some time. Although she could have kissed him at her minimal size she thought that this was the best way to show her love for him.
Once again she was lost in her own world and she accidentally sucked a little too hard as she kissed and Tucker found himself being sucked into her mouth. He was beginning to struggle as he was somewhat afraid that she was going to swallow him. It was his struggles that alerted Jessica that something was wrong. When she snapped back to reality she found that Tucker was half way into her mouth and she could hear him trying to say something. Unfortunately she couldn't hear him properly.
Immediately she spat him out onto her hand. Jessica had a terrified look on her face as she looked down at Tucker whose upper half was completely drenched in saliva. He looked a little spaced out and a couple of tears rolled down her face. She thought that he would hate her now for what she had done. It had truly been an accident but she feared that she could have actually swallowed him.
"Tucker I'm so sorry," cried Jessica. She tried to wipe away some of the saliva on his body with her fingers bit it was a difficult task. She was more terrified than she could remember. "I got carried away."
"Y-you had me in your mouth," replied Tucker who was still spaced out after what had just happened.
"I swear I didn't mean for that to happen." It was not the first time that she had kissed someone at her maximum size but it was the first passionate kiss that she had ever done. She now felt more than ever that she had ruined the relationship which they shared. Tears were still rolling down her face. "It's just that I got caught in the moment and I accidentally almost swallowed you. Please don't hate me, you're the only friend that I've ever had and I don't want to be alone."
"I-It's alright Jessica." Slowly he got back to his feet and he was feeling a little lightheaded. Otherwise he was fine and a quick wash was all that was needed to get the saliva off his body. "These things happen." He was taking it much better than she expected and she couldn't help but wipe away a couple of her tears and even break a smile. "Like my swordplay I think you need some practice."
"Yeah sure I do." Her smile grew a little as she realised that Tucker didn't hate her for what happened. He had seen that it was genuine accident. "Does this mean that we're a... you know a...?"
"Couple?" There was a pause as Jessica awaited his answer. She could hear her own heartbeat. "I don't see why not."