by ”URN My Power“
Chelsea Smithe stared unabashedly at herself—or rather, one of the renditions of herself hanging in the studio where the nudes wouldn’t offend those who didn’t want to see naked people. There were paintings of the other model too—due to a threat by Mrs. Oyama that anyone who didn’t turn in a painting project would get a zero for the semester. There were also landscapes, still lives and other staples of the painting world. There was even a picture of Megatron and Starscream re-done with disguise pieces of an elephant and a donkey, respectively. Chelsea had found that hilarious.
Chelsea had always been drawn to anime cat-girls, or “nekos,” because of the sensuality she perceived in cats in general, the slinkiness of felinity, and had done several nekos of her own—in her sketchbook. Now her eyes were locked onto an image of herself as a cat-girl in heat. She remembered the itch she’d had the day she’d posed, but Charlie had transmogrified the need to scratch into raw sexual need. Her human ears were absent, replaced with catlike ones on top of her head, and her tail was curled off to the side so as to avoid interfering with her mate’s access. There was no mate pictured, but with the shield of ice around her emotions melted, she imagined Charlie behind her, filling her in that way Chelsea Smith always described, stroking her body through the thin fur coat, scratching her between the ears...
Somebody burst out laughing at the political Decepticons, shattering Chelsea’s trance. Groaning with loss, she left the studio. Mrs. Oyama was marking in people’s sketchbooks.
“Oh, Miss Smithe, how nice to see you!” she said cheerfully.
“I...I was wondering if I could have one of the paintings in there.” she said.
“Do I get to guess which one?” Mrs. Oyama asked.
“’Purr-r-r-r-ecious.’“ Chelsea said.
“Aww, I wanted to guess.” Mrs. Oyama pouted. Then she winked. “I rather thought it would be that one. Charlie isn’t my most technically proficient student, but he does have a way of touching the audience, and that, in my opinion, is what art is all about. Sadly, I can’t just sell or give away my students’ works.” She wrote something on a Post-It pad, peeling off the top sheet and handing it to her. “You’ll have to ask him yourself.” Chelsea looked at the note in her hand and thanked the teacher.
She spent the walk to Fokker Hall trying to restore her composure and emotional control. It wouldn’t help to rape the poor boy in his doorway. Or would it? No, she wasn’t like that, she told herself. She wasted ten minutes working up the nerve to knock on his door.
“May I help you?” a polite voice asked behind her. She squeaked and jumped, whirling in mid-air to see who it was who had surprised her. There was Charlie. Chelsea Smith’s Charlie. Her roommate’s much-touted, awesome boyfriend. The perceptive youth who’d taken her sensual side and put it up on a canvas for the world to see. His hair was wet, and he smelled like body wash and aftershave. It was a good scent. She was kissing him before she knew it. Overwrought, she couldn’t muster the willpower to break off. Her brain wasn’t working right. Her body was in control, and she was just along for the ride.
So this is what it’s like to be in heat. thought a much-diminished voice in the back of her mind. She was in the dorm room, and then they were somewhere a lot fancier. A feminine finger appeared in her field of view, and a light appeared at the tip of one manicured fingernail. Her desires were moved to the back burner, along with her thoughts, their importance replaced by the desires of the one who held her will in her hand.
“Okay, now, let’s try this again.” Charlie said. He took the Post-It from her fingers. “Who gave you my dorm room number?”
“Mrs. Oyama.” Chelsea droned.
“Because I asked her.”
“’Purr-r-r-r-ecious.’“ she replied. “I...have to have it. She can’t sell it or give it away. Needed your purr-mission.” Even suppressed as it was, a touch of her desire came through in her voice, and she blushed as she realized how she’d said “permission.”
“And just what do you intend to do with my painting project?” he asked gently.
“Hang it on my wall and frig myself into a frenzy.” she responded.
The finger was withdrawn. Chelsea managed to hold her returning arousal at bay for a short time. A hot, redheaded woman was waving her hand over a leather collar.
“Is it your fantasy to be a cat-woman?” Charlie asked.
“It’s like you took my sensuous side and put it on the canvas. You...you understand why I want your painting, right?”
“I think you want more than that.” Charlie said. “Here.” He handed her the collar. It tingled in her hands.
“What’s this?” Chelsea asked.
“A night of fantasy, if you want it.” he responded. She was far too horny to think straight. She put the collar on. Her mind fell even further into the haze of arousal. Her body tingled. She noticed that she was growing a light coating of fur, but she accepted it as part of the dream. It was a dream. How else could a fancy manor be inside a college dorm? She adjusted her panties under her skirt to accommodate the tail that was growing from her posterior. While she was doing that, the sound in her dream cut out. She felt the sides of her head, noticing the absence of ears. The sound cut back in. How silly of her to check for ears there—her ears were on top of her head. Her slitted eyes stared back at her in the mirror. She was covered in white fur, but her mane was still as black as pitch.
Charlie petted her, and she leaned into it, purring happily. She was given a bowl of cream to drink, and beside that was tuna mixed with Miracle Whip. She ate and drank happily, then turned her attention to her other need. Crawling across the floor to him, she was a little surprised when he clipped a leash onto her collar.
“Come, kitty.” he said. She padded along behind him obediently, on her hands and knees. He let her up onto the bed and helped her out of the confining clothes. She wondered how she’d gotten tangled up in those. He looped her leash over the bedpost. She presented her backside, her tail kept out of the way. Her mate slid in, filling her. He was so big, bigger than any mate she’d ever had.
Her body was bucking and fucking against him with a will of its own. She was animal passion, sexual pleasure, mating instinct, desire and sensuality. Her mate stroked her tail and hindquarters. Then his semen erupted within her. Her world exploded in white-hot ecstasy.
Chelsea Smithe awoke slowly. The painting was hung on her wall. Her fur and tail were gone. It had all been a dream. She whimpered in loss. She could still taste the tuna and cream. Such an intense dream. She covered her head, squeezing her eyes shut, desperate to regain the dream but knowing it was futile.
Chelsea Smith came in, humming happily. Something wasn’t right. She’d come out of the closet. That was SO not right! “Come on, Smithe, we’re gonna be late.”
“You go on.” Smithe said, burrowing under the covers and pillows, wanting more than anything to dig that dream back out of the depths of her subconscious. Smith pulled the stuff off of her. Smithe hissed.
“You know, if someone normal had as good a time as you did, she’d be feeling a lot better.”
“I had a dream last night.” Smithe said. “I didn’t want it to end. Reality sucks.”
“Dream, huh?” Smith asked. “Okay, have it your way.” She dressed quickly and left. Smithe opened the closet. It was just a closet, and it smelled like it always did on the day before laundry day. There was no way Smith had come out of there.
Sleep wouldn’t come, and reluctantly, Smithe got dressed. She looked enviously at her likeness on the canvas, kept up by a bit of Command adhesive and a plastic hook, before taking off.
“Hello?” Hilda called timidly as she entered through the unlocked door.
“If you’re looking for Master, he’s in school at the moment.” said Amelie.
“Oh.” Hilda said.
“Relax, I’m under instructions not to enslave anyone without Master’s permission, unless it’s life-or-death and she’s pretty.” She winked. Hilda closed the door behind herself, wondering if this was what the Polynesian princess had felt like in that “movie” she’d seen, just before she was to be sacrificed to the heathen volcano god.
“I...I need to warn Charlie.” she said.
“About what?” Amelie asked, seriously. Hilda told her all about Brother Hans and Brother Reinhart.
“I hate to think ill of the Holy Mother Church, but...” she sobbed.
“The church is not a single entity with a single will.” said another female voice. “It is an organization of humans with human flaws, occasionally with their own agendas, some less holy than others. There are rivalries, disagreements and even intrigue.”
“I’m sorry, who are you?” Hilda asked.
“A teacher, of sorts.” the woman replied, stepping down the stairs. “My name is Sanna al-Malik, and you are?”
“Hilda von Braun. I served here before Charlie ensnared Amelie and made her set us free.”
“Ah.” said Sanna. ”You’re in no danger here, Fraulein von Braun. The Master of the house won’t allow it.“ She said it in such flawless German that Hilda actually relaxed somewhat. ”Shall I fetch you something to drink?“
“No alcohol, please. It gets me in trouble.“ Hilda responded. Amelie laughed softly.
“I hardly call a passionate night with Master ‘getting in trouble,’ dear.” she said.
“What do you know?” Hilda snapped. “Churches aren’t just ideal hunting grounds for new slaves!”
“Don’t let her ruffle your feathers, dear.“ Sanna said softly. She took Hilda’s hand and led her to the kitchen. She made two glasses of chocolate milk. It didn’t hold a candle to the chocolate where she’d come from—when she’d come from—but it was okay. They drank and talked.
Sanna spoke of intolerance from the viewpoint of someone who’d experienced it firsthand. How everyone thought their way was the right way, and how there were some who couldn’t wrap their minds around the idea that someone else’s way might be just as valid as theirs. How there were some who just couldn’t stand not to have an enemy to subjugate or annihilate.
She spoke of shame that her own homeland was thought of as a breeding ground for such personalities, because the only people from there they’d ever heard of were like that. Hilda understood. People who weren’t from Germany still thought of some sick man called Hitler whenever the country’s name came up. They probably always would. The sad part was that there were still people who martyred the memory of the long-dead Adolf Hitler, following his teachings the way she tried to follow Scripture.
“Hello again, Hilda.” Charlie said, startling her. She looked at him, then turned away, blushing at the impure thoughts that started running through her head. Her body betrayed her, making ready for fornication against her will. Sanna came to her rescue again by delivering Hilda’s message.
“It’s okay, Hilda, you can hide here.” Charlie said. “I’ll make sure Amelie doesn’t bother you.”
“What about you?” Hilda asked.
“I’ll be extra careful.” he said. He kissed her. She tried to break it off, but her body refused. It took all of her willpower to separate from him. She started to cry.
“I think she’s having trouble reconciling her desires and her upbringing.” Sanna said.
“See if you can make her comfortable, Sanna, I’ve got homework in three classes, and I need to go ahead and get it out of the way.” he told the Arab woman. She nodded, and Charlie wiped Hilda’s face free of tears.
“Did you ever see/A piece of paper so blank/as that one right there?” Smith quipped, peering over Smithe’s shoulder at her unstarted homework even as she closed her own literature book.
“Quit with the haiku, Smith.” Smithe snapped.
“An art so ancient/And noble should not be slammed/By the likes of you.” Smith responded with a smirk.
“You’re pushing my buttons.” Smithe warned.
“Perhaps you should not/Make it so easy to do,/My dark and grim friend.” Smith replied.
“THAT’S IT!” Smithe yelled, knocking the chair on its back as she rose to her feet, ready to fight. Smith backed up to the wall, not far from the plaster spot covering the last hole Smithe had made. That was how Smith fought, letting herself get backed up against the wall, and then moving her head out of the way so that whoever was trying to hurt her hit his or her hand on the wall behind her. Smithe wasn’t standing for it this time. She grabbed a handful of blouse and pulled, sending buttons flying everywhere. She also caught her opponent’s bra. Smith’s boobs bounced free, bobbling like speed bags.
“Oh, that’s the way you wanna play it?” Smith asked with a sneer. She grabbed a handful of Smithe’s Metallica shirt and ripped it from collar to beltline, leaving her more modest endowments exposed.
This was my FAVORITE shirt! her mind snarled. She drew her hand back for a punch, but Smith beat her to it, jabbing her in the nose just hard enough to make her eyes water. She heard her foe scrambling while she was blinded. She got her hands on Smith’s blouse, but the slippery bitch wriggled out of it and dove into the closet, after jimmying it open with a card. “There’s no escape that way, Smith!” Smithe shrieked, as mad as a wet hornet with PMS. She threw open the door and charged. It closed behind her, but she didn’t care. Smith was running topless up a familiar set of stairs with plush carpeting. Smithe dove, grabbing her prey by the shoe, but the foot slipped out. Her quarry kept going, unhampered by her missing tennis shoe. She opened a door. Smithe was right on top of her. A masculine pair of arms wrapped around her as she thrashed and snarled.
“Easy, easy, Chelsea!” said a male voice. Smithe continued to wriggle. The voice hummed soothingly, kissing her neck and rocking from side to side. The redness faded from her vision, and she recognized Charlie’s voice. She moaned as he caressed her bare breasts. “Good girl, good, good.” he said softly.
Her roommate sat on the bed, not even bothering to conceal her unfettered breasts. This was Charlie’s place? It didn’t look like any dorm room she’d ever seen. It was more like the bedroom from her dream. “How’d we get here?” she asked. “I could have sworn we dashed into the closet...”
“You’ve been here before. Don’t you remember? I took you through my closet and let you experience your cat-girl fantasy.”
“That...that was real?” she asked.
“As real as my boobies.” Smith responded, shaking her chest shamelessly.
“I think you’d better let me handle this, Chelse. She seems a little peeved at you.” Charlie said.
“Yes, Master.” Smith responded humbly.
“’Master?’” Smithe asked.
“I volunteered to become his sex slave.” Smith explained. “There’s plenty to go around.” She winked. Smithe was floored.
“Chelse, did you do this?” he asked, indicating the remains of Smithe’s shirt.
“Yes, Master, but she ripped mine first.” Smith replied. “My bra too.”
“This was my FAVORITE shirt!” Smithe snarled.
“Oh.” Smith replied. “Sorry, roomie, I guess I got carried away.”
“You and your damn haiku.” Smithe growled.
“That’s just an excuse.” Charlie said. “What really started this?”
“Roomie’s been a little snippy since she woke up from what she thought was a really awesome dream, and couldn’t get it back.” Smith said.
“If you wanted to re-live that, all you had to do was ask.” Charlie said.
“Master, I feel bad about tearing her shirt. Can I go to the store right quick and replace it? I think I might have time before it closes.”
“Go.” Charlie said. “And send Amelie up here with the collar.”
“Yes, Master.” Smith said, and bounced downstairs. In minutes, the redhead was back, dangling the collar from her hand. Chelsea Smithe stared at it for a moment before she took it in her hands. She slipped out of her clothes before putting the collar on. Her body was instantly ten times more sensitive than before. The fur grew first, followed by the tail. She was too horny to care when her hearing cut out briefly. She looked at herself in the mirror. She was a pretty kitty, a sexy kitty. Master petted her, and she purred. She was a good, obedient kitty.
“Up in the bed, pretty kitty.” he told her, and she complied. Her Mate and Master undressed quickly and climbed in bed behind her. She turned her head to look at him, and her tail moved out of the way, granting him access. Her body was still more human than cat, but there was enough cat in her to drive her to mindless ecstasy as he fucked her hard and fast, just like she liked it. She came like a freight train and passed out.
She was still in her semi-feline form when she regained consciousness. Someone was lapping at her pussy. It was so good; she relaxed, moaned, and let it happen. She came again, not as hard as before, but it was better than any fuck she’d ever had when she was fully human. She looked down and found Chelsea Smith smiling up at her. The Chelseas kissed, and all was forgiven.
“I think I’m in love with your boyfriend.” Smithe said.
“Welcome to the club.” Smith responded. “Good thing there’s enough of Master to go around.”
“Master-r-r-r.” Smithe purred. “He controls me, doesn’t he?”
“From what Amelie told me, the collar makes you into a well-trained, obedient sex-kitten.”
“Does it also make me not want to take it off?”
“Nope. That’s all you, pet.”
“Just promise you won’t hit me in the nose anymore.”
“Sure.” They kissed again.
Charlie came down to get himself something to drink. When he entered the kitchen, he found Hilda standing beside the fridge, her eyes glowing that same familiar blue. Sanna cast the counterspell, and expression returned to the German girl’s eyes.
“Master!” she said enthusiastically, and ran into Charlie’s arms.
“Sanna...?” Charlie began.
“You DID tell me to make her comfortable, Master.” Sanna said. “She’s been torn between her desire for you and the guilt imposed upon her by her upbringing.”
“So you relieved the guilt by removing the choice?” Charlie asked. Sanna nodded. “Hilda, get two beers out of the fridge.”
“Of course, Master.” Hilda said, and headed for the refrigerator.
“Are you unhappy, Master?” Sanna asked, looking as if her world depended upon his answer—and perhaps, in a sense, it did.
“No, I can’t really say that I am.” he admitted. Sanna sighed in relief, and Charlie kissed her. “In the future, though, if you think making someone comfortable will involve adding her to my harem, I’d appreciate it if you’d discuss it with me first, m’kay?”
“Yes, Master.” Sanna responded. Charlie kissed her again, then gave Hilda a kiss as she produced the beer. Charlie had one, and had Hilda and Sanna split the other, since neither had his tolerance for alcohol. He led them upstairs, one on each arm, until they got to Amelie’s warded workroom where most of Charlie’s magical instruction was to take place. They left the empty bottles outside.
“What’s the lesson today, Sanna?” Charlie asked. Amelie was in the center of the room, staring enchantedly into a silver dish. As Charlie approached, he saw the object of her interest: Charlie’s brother was giving Akiko a bath.
“Scrying.” Sanna said. As Charlie looked down into the image in the water, Akiko looked up and squealed in delight.
“Does she see us?” Charlie whispered.
“It would appear so, Master.” Amelie replied. “A rare child.”
“Who is she?” Sanna asked, intrigued, and Hilda joined them as well. Akiko’s giggle brought smiles to the faces of all the watchers.
“My niece.” he replied.
“Enchanting girl.” Hilda said, and pouted when Sanna had Amelie dismiss the spell. Charlie put his arm around her shoulder. He could see a pacifier sitting in the bottom of the dish while Sanna opened Tashi Myrdhynn’s grimoire to the proper page.
“Having something that belongs to the person you’re trying to scry helps.” Amelie explained. “Especially something that fits in whatever water container you’re using and won’t be ruined by immersion.”
“Yes.” Sanna confirmed, handing Charlie the book. The spell was simple Latin, so Charlie had little difficulty reading it. “I don’t suppose your niece has ever been tested?”
“Amelie said her spider medallion glowed so brightly white it hurt to look at it.” Charlie replied.
“Where did you get a testing medallion?” Sanna asked Amelie.
“It belonged to the first person I ever killed willingly.” Amelie responded.
“It glowed a nice, gold color when I touched it, and it was red when she touched it.” Charlie interjected. Sanna nodded to herself. “Okay, is there anything else I need to do before I say this?” he asked. Sanna plucked the pacifier out of the water and withdrew a plastic bag from her handbag. Inside the plastic bag was a comb.
“I borrowed this from your friend, though I didn’t tell him what it was for.” she said, handing it over. “Place it in the water and wait for the surface to still.” Charlie slid the comb into the water and watched the ripples until he could see his reflection and those of his audience—including one additional observer.
I thought you left. Charlie thought at the spirit of Tashi Myrdhynn.
No, I was merely exploring the premises. the spirit responded, not moving its ethereal lips except to smirk at Charlie.
“Concentrate on your friend, Steve, and when you have his visage firmly in mind, speak the incantation.” Sanna said. “Try to ignore the presence of my brother floating over our shoulders.” she added. The spirit faded from view, aiding Charlie’s concentration. He muttered the spell, and blackness spread out from the comb. The blackness was soon replaced by an image of Steve and Claudia in their room. Claudia was wearing a rabbit-eared hair band, stockings and a garter belt with a cotton ball affixed to the back as a tail, while Steve was wearing a horned helmet and pistoning into her from behind.
“I’ve told him not to borrow my things without permission!” Amelie huffed. She said something under her breath, and the helmet changed from brass-colored to gold-colored.
“Ah, fuck!” Steve cried as his hips went into overdrive. Claudia grunted in time with his rapid thrusts until she came. Amelie watched until the woman had had four orgasms before taking pity on the couple and releasing the spell. Steve stiffened and grunted as he came.
“Maybe now he’ll learn his lesson.” Amelie said.
“What did you do?” Charlie asked.
“I activated the helmet’s magic; it overwhelms the wearer with insatiable lust that can’t be fulfilled until the spell is released.” Amelie said. “I...well, the old me...used to use it on men who didn’t have much staying power.” Charlie dismissed the scrying spell.
“Go collect the helmet and we can scry my niece some more.” Charlie said. Amelie bounced eagerly out of the room, almost cheerleader-like.
“You can scry someone without their personal effects, but it has to be someone you know well.” Sanna said, continuing the lesson. “Also, the image of their surroundings isn’t as clear, unless you have already been there before.” Charlie removed the comb from the water, handing it to Sanna, and concentrated on his niece. When he cast the spell again, an image appeared in the water, as clear as it had been when Amelie had been using the pacifier. Akiko was lying in bed, listening to her father read her a story. The child squealed and kicked excitedly, instantly catching sight of her invisible—to everyone else, apparently—watchers. Charlie chuckled as his brother looked up but, seeing nothing, merely shushed Akiko and continued with the story. Amelie returned, clutching the helmet to her chest, and eagerly peered into the water to gaze adoringly at the toddler.
“She really can sense when she’s being scried.” Sanna whispered. Harold, Jr. finished the story and kissed Akiko on the cheek. Charlie waved the girl a farewell and blew her a kiss. The breath rippled the surface of the water, distorting the image, and he dismissed the spell. “Master, I would like to contact the Myrdhynns. Protection should be arranged for your niece.” Charlie nodded.
“Okay, Mr. Ghost, it’s time we had a little talk.” Charlie said to the book. He was sitting in the former quarters of one of Amelie’s former male fetish-slaves.
So confrontational. the spirit’s voice said.
“Are you coming out or do I have to smoke you out?” Charlie asked, pulling the trigger on a long butane lighter for lighting barbecue grills. Tashi Myrdhynn manifested a giant, floating head, his scowling visage not at all amused. “Now that I have your attention...”
You always have my attention, young man. Tashi Myrdhynn said.
“It seems to me you’re a fairly reckless person, for someone who’s been...around...for centuries.”
If you’re referring to the manner of Sanna and Kamilah’s becoming bound to you, I had the measure of all parties involved before I made the attempt. Though you might think otherwise, the chances of an unfavorable outcome—for me—were slight. Sanna must teach you to harness your potential. As for Kamilah, her parents instilled in her a phobia against sexual contact from childhood. There is a work-around, but like the spell to restore Sanna’s liberty, you will not be ready to cast it for some time yet.
“What kind of a work-around?” Charlie asked.
Establishing a mental link to Kamilah’s past self, before my influence. the spirit said. You can then assimilate her memories and transfer those you deem it necessary for her to have into the mind of the new Kamilah.
“Yeah, that sounds like an advanced working, all right.” Charlie sighed.
Don’t be discouraged. Tashi Myrdhynn said, the head-image shrinking to a less imposing size—not that that had done much to intimidate Charlie. With cleverness, preparation, hard work and a bit of luck, everything will come out for the best.
“So, why are you still hanging around?”
Because...I’m stuck. the spirit said, seeming somewhat embarrassed. My soul is bound to the grimoire. Severing that bond is tricky, and the spell carries a side-effect which inevitably results in the destruction of the vessel.
“Sanna could teach from her own grimoire.” Charlie suggested.
There are spells in my grimoire which exist in no other book, painstakingly copied centuries ago from originals that have since decayed beyond legibility, been consigned to the flame or lost at sea, and others which I discovered after decades of research and experimentation.
“And you never bothered to share them with anyone else.” Charlie responded dryly.
I thought I would have the chance in life to pass them on to an apprentice. Sadly, I spent too much time gathering spells, far too little in searching for someone to teach them to. The image diminished until it was normal size. Sorcerers are not immune to making mistakes.
“Which is why I don’t want you gambling with anyone else’s mind.” Charlie said.
I will be content as long as you remain alive and learning. the spirit said, and faded away, looking tired. Perhaps, Charlie thought, manifesting a visible image wasn’t a simple matter for a dead person. He picked up the book and put it on the warded bookshelf with the other grimoires in Amelie’s and Sanna’s now combined collection.
“’Sup, dude?” Steve asked as Charlie entered the kitchen. Steve and Claudia were sitting at the table with bags of ice over their crotches.
“Amelie’s already scolded you?” Charlie asked. Steve sighed and nodded. “Lesson learned?” Steve nodded. “Good, then I don’t have to do anything.” He grabbed the milk and kicked the door closed before grabbing a few boxes of just-add-milk-and-mix pudding, Nilla wafers and the mixer from their respective cabinets and the bananas from the center of the table.
“Oo! Banana pudding!” Chelsea Smith said from the doorway, and immediately joined in the preparation. A signet ring Amelie had given Charlie to let him know when someone was knocking on his dorm room door buzzed in his pocket.
“Take over, Chelse.” he said, kissing her and handing over the mixer. He left through the closet and opened the door. “Uh, Pastor Brown, what a surprise!” he said when he saw who was there.
“Not a pleasant one, I’m afraid.” the man said, his eyes laden with guilt. “At least, not after you’ve heard what I have to say.”
The weekend had come, and the Pontiac pulled into Harold, Jr.’s driveway fully laden. Charlie drove, Amelie rode shotgun, and three representatives of the Order of Merlin—Artus Myrdhynn, Brutus Myrdhynn and Sanna—rode in the back, all dressed in “civilian” clothes. As predicted, Charlie saw his parents’ truck parked off to the side, with stuff from the pool house stacked inside.
Pastor Brown had spent an hour apologizing to Charlie during his visit, for what Charlie felt wholeheartedly wasn’t the man’s fault. The repeat mention of a Cardinal Wolfgang had put Charlie on his guard, however, so he’d thanked the pastor and had Amelie make him an escape-charm in case he needed it. All he had to do was to picture a place he knew well and speak the incantation on the back, and he and up to ten people—who had to be in physical contact—would be transported there in an instant. It was the least he could do, and Charlie figured the man could use it, especially if Wolfgang became frustrated in his efforts.
Akiko squealed with delight when Charlie got out of the car. She squirmed until Kumoko let her down and toddled into her uncle’s arms. Charlie lifted her high into the air and lowered her just enough to blow a raspberry on her stomach to make her laugh. Amelie happily indulged the child when she reached out for her.
“Hey, Dad, bro, need any help with the pool house?” Charlie asked.
“Your timing is impeccable.” Harold, Jr. said.
“Who are they?” his father asked neutrally.
“Oh, my bad.” Charlie said. “This is Arthur Merlin,” he gestured to Artus, then to Brutus, “and his second cousin on his father’s side, Bruce.” Brutus nodded to each of Charlie’s family members as they were introduced. “The other young woman going gaga over Akiko is Sanna al-Malik.” Sanna seemed not to have heard, so engrossed was she in the bright-eyed toddler.
“Muslim?” Charlie’s father asked.
“Not to my knowledge.” Charlie responded. How could he explain to his father that Sanna had been Iset Myrdhynn, archmage and member in good standing of the Order of Merlin, since before Mohammed was even a twinkle in his father’s eye? The two sorceresses carried Akiko closer to the family, and Charlie introduced each member in turn. Sanna handed the child back to her mother.
“She’s a little enchantress.” Sanna said with a smile.
“I don’t think you have to worry much about babysitters, Kumoko.” Charlie said. Each of the Myrdhynns gave his or her cover story without mistake. They made their way to the back, where the pig sty that was his brother’s pool house sat awaiting their attentions. Brutus immediately picked up the largest piece of furniture he could find, a Baldwin piano with three broken wheels, a faded finish and a sun-warped top, and asked where it was wanted.
“Over there in the trailer.” Charlie’s father said. Brutus grunted and waddled in the trailer’s direction. “You certainly don’t pick lazy friends, Charlie.” Indeed, Artus was already carrying a stack of boxes in which glasses and mugs rattled, Sanna had found a dolly and was using it to move a dented filing cabinet out, while Amelie had hefted a bag of clothes onto her shoulder.
“That wouldn’t have done any good, would it?” Charlie asked. He slipped on a pair of work gloves and helped his brother pick up a trunk that followed most of the other unbroken things into the bed of the truck.
“No, I guess not.” his father said, watching as Brutus picked up a second trunk, which seemed to be on the verge of falling apart, but he managed to keep it together—what did it matter that he used a softly-spoken magical spell? Soon enough, the pool house was empty and they began the process of bracing the roof so that rotten supports could be replaced from the stock of lumber sitting on the porch. Brutus lived up to his carpenter’s credentials, inspecting each board and beam before they were taken in, rejecting four of them and pointing out previously-unseen flaws which would cause disastrous failures later. They left the braces up for the parts where the rejected supports would have gone, and the Harolds took Brutus to the Home Depot before it closed.
“So, Arthur, what’s your cousin like when he’s not carrying and carpentering?” Kumoko asked, bouncing her daughter on her knee.
“’Carpentering?’” Artus asked. He waved the question away and sighed. “Quiet, gentle, kind. He picks up spiders on pieces of paper and takes them out to the garden instead of squishing them.”
“Is there a lucky girl waiting for him at home?” Kumoko asked. Artus shook his head.
“Not since the last one danced La Cucaracha on his heart.” he said, finger brushing his hair behind his ears. “Definitely not the type for one-night stands. If you’re looking to fix him up, she must be patient, willing to draw him out of his shell—and be able to bear his very large children.”
Amelie’s eyes sparkled at Charlie on hearing the last part. They slipped off together and ended up in Kumoko’s basement studio. Musical instruments were arrayed around a recording area on the other side of a soundproof partition with double-paned glass so that the operator of the mixers and computers on the near side could see everything. The Linux penguin decorated the electronics, and he knew that Linux software was being run on them. While Amelie cast her wards on the door, Charlie dug out some mats and a blanket. They closed the door to the recording area and set up below the window.
“We’d better get married.” Charlie said as he eased her out of her clothes. “My parents wouldn’t like it if I had a child outside of wedlock. That is what you want, right?”
“What I want doesn’t matter, Master.” Amelie whispered.
“It does to me.” Charlie responded. “You do want a baby, right?”
“Yes! Yes yes yes, I do!” she cried, tears appearing in her eyes. “Ever since I met Akiko.” His lips locked with hers. His hands massaged her now-bare breasts as he slid her pants to the floor. She kicked out of those and her shoes, hands fumbling madly with the buttons of his shirt. He lay her down on their improvised bed and he finished undressing while she played with herself. He removed her fingers from her slit and replaced them with his cock. She shivered and moaned as the full length of his penis slid into and out of her repeatedly, while his hands did their work on her breasts. She heaved, and was on top of him, riding him like a cowgirl, her eyes burning with passion. “I love you, Master.” she repeated over and over again, a mantra of adoration and devotion. Her eyes rolled as she had her first orgasm. He took advantage of the situation to change positions, removing himself from within her just long enough to get her onto her hands and knees and reenter from behind. He thrust hard and deep, and she panted and grunted in animal lust, their bodies making wet, sloppy sounds as the two rutted on the mats. He let out a grunt and stiffened as he came at the apex of a particularly hard thrust, spewing his seed deep inside her. Amelie screamed in a climax of her own. They spooned there on the mats, the blanket keeping their sweaty bodies from being chilled by the cold plastic. They lay there for a while, just the two of them, until Amelie sensed that someone was knocking on the door. She summoned their clothes with a few words, and they were dressed and presentable.
The great old tree stood proud and tall, unbowed and unashamed, displaying the ancient Druidic symbols carved into its bark proudly, as if mocking the silly mortals who no longer had the knowledge to read their message. There were those who could and did, but they were few. One of those walked out of the side of the tree as if it were a hologram. The hooded figure bowed and gave thanks to the spirit of the tree, pricking her finger and allowing a few drops of her blood to drip onto the roots. The drops disappeared like water on a hot sidewalk, and the figure pulled her hood back. The shape of the face, the structure of nose and cheek and chin, the shade of eye and hair, were very much like those of Amelie. Her hair was much shorter, however, reaching only down to her shoulders, and her eyes, for those who dared to meet them, spoke of long-suffered duty, determination, unfulfilled obligation.
She strode purposefully to the nearest town and allowed herself a glimmer of satisfaction. She was in the right place—not that there had been much doubt, but there was always the possibility. A safety feature of the old Druidic gate-trees was that if the destination tree was unusable, the magic would default to the nearest active gate-tree other than the one from which the traveler originated. The trees were becoming more rare all the time, almost as rare as those who could still use and care for them.
She walked into the library and found a copy of the local newspaper from late November. As expected, she found more details about the incident which had brought her here to Spain in the first place. Nearly a hundred displaced men found confused in a field nearby, dressed in sexually-provocative clothing, most with no idea what century they were in. One had been returned to the home of his descendents in Dublin, reeking of magic.
Specifically, the magic of Amelie O’Fae.
The O’Fae family had not been fortunate in reproduction. Their firstborn daughter, Annemarie, had watched one brother after another die shortly after birth. Her mother had invited an old man to stay with them one cold and blustery winter day when Annemarie was six. Her father had known he was a Druid from the start, and was unafraid, for Druids had been known far and wide as keepers of the Light, friends of Nature, lovers of Life—some of the older ones could be rather dogmatic, but only if they for some reason or another began to lose their Second Sight. He had tested Annemarie and found her especially gifted; thus, he offered to train Annemarie, to help her realize the vast potential for good within her. In return, he blessed their fields so they would grow more come spring, and examined Annemarie’s mother to find out why her children kept dying. He told her to wait a few years and allow her body to recover from the previous pregnancies before trying to become pregnant again.
Annemarie had gone with the Druid then, and he had taught her to shape the world around her, how to kill, how to heal, and she proved an apt pupil. She was allowed to return each year to spend Samhain with her parents, and when she was sixteen, she found a little sister awaiting her. Amelie, her parents had named the little girl. Amelie was a joy to behold, an innocent and affectionate girl who loved life.
Annemarie completed her training in her twentieth year, and returned, thinking to use her abilities to help around her parents’ house and maybe even teach little Amelie. When she got to the house, she found only a burned-out husk. An uncle of theirs, a warlock, had taken Amelie by force, killing their parents who had tried to stop him.
It took eighteen years to find Amelie the first time. By then, she had already broken free and killed her master. The damage had already been done, however. Amelie was a creature of the dark, a mistress of black magic and lover of power. The two fought like cats and dogs. Just before Annemarie could strike a decisive blow, however, her sister made a cowardly retreat. Thus it was for their next few engagements, each time in a different country. In Germany, Amelie fought Annemarie to a bitter stalemate, and in Cordova, Spain, Amelie scored her first victory against Annemarie. It wouldn’t be the last, but nor was it the end of Annemarie’s ability to best her younger sibling, either. Each maintained several houses throughout Europe, so that neither would be sure to find the other at any single house.
Annemarie had kept track of her sister over the centuries. Amelie turned people—both men and women—into slaves for her personal pleasure. She amassed power for herself at terrible cost to others. Though it cost her much to admit it, Annemarie knew that Amelie was too much of a danger to be left in the world.
And she could not shunt the responsibility onto anyone else.
“Excuse me,” she said in Spanish to the woman behind the desk, “what field were these people found in? The article doesn’t say?”
The quintet drove away from Harold, Jr.’s house well-pleased with themselves. They had accomplished their main mission of getting a Myrdhynn installed as a boarder in the pool house—both of the males, in this case—and Sanna had taught Charlie a warding-spell to keep out anyone or anything with malicious intent—which Charlie had cast upon his brother’s house. Then, Charlie and Amelie had announced their engagement to the family.
Amelie’s head rested on Charlie’s shoulder as he drove down the darkened highway, her fingers entwined in his. Artus and Brutus discussed plans between themselves, while Sanna slept, her head leaning against the tinted window. He didn’t wake either of the women until they parked at the college. Charlie cast the invisibility spell himself, to show that he had indeed learned it, and the group crept quietly up the stairs. He banished his spell once they were in the dorm—which stayed vacant except for mussed twin-size bedding. They made the trip through the closet, and Amelie froze.
“What is it?” Charlie whispered, though he too felt something amiss.
“I sense something.” Amelie responded. “A presence I’ve not felt since...”
“Could you be any more cliché?” an exasperated female voice asked from the stairway. A woman in a green, hooded robe rose from her seated position on the stairs. Charlie noticed she looked a lot like Amelie, but with shorter hair. “By the way, your wards suck. They can’t even tell the difference between you and your older sister.”
“Annemarie.” Amelie said. “It’s been a long time.”
“Yes, just over one hundred and twenty-three years ago.”
“Please don’t say she never calls or writes.” Charlie muttered.
“Oh, we struck each other from our Christmas card lists long ago, pretty boy.” Annemarie said. “I don’t know what charm she holds over you, but don’t interfere. This is a family matter. As her only living relative, it’s my responsibility to see to it she doesn’t hurt anyone else.”
“Wait!” Charlie called, as Annemarie held up a spell book—Tashi Myrdhynn’s grimoire.
“After you worked so hard to procure this, Amelie, you really should protect it better.” Annemarie said.
“Look, if you’re not an evil sorceress, then you won’t want to kill your own sister!” Charlie said.
“I don’t, but I don’t have a choice.” Annemarie responded.
“Yes, you do.” Charlie said. “Amelie’s not like that anymore. Isn’t that right, Amelie?”
“Yes, Master.” Amelie replied dutifully.
“’Master?’” Annemarie asked incredulously.
“She tried to cast a mind-control spell on me, but I bounced it back and used it to make her into a completely new person.” Charlie said. “You should also know, that spell-book you’re holding is haunted.”
“I wish I could trust you, but she’s pulled just this sort of trick before.” Annemarie said. “Don’t interfere. I have to finish this.” She waved her hand, and rings of fire encircled Charlie. She opened the grimoire and began to cast a spell.
Charlie saw his opportunity as the evil-looking cloud appeared in Annemarie’s hand. She loosed the spell, and Charlie dashed forward, flames from the rings licking around him but not touching him. He stepped in front of Amelie, and the spell bounced off his chest. Annemarie dispelled the cloud before it could touch her, and sighed.
“I see.” she said. “You were telling the truth.” She closed the book with a relieved smile.
“Well done.” Brutus Myrdhynn said, placing a congratulatory hand on Charlie’s shoulder.
“We knew you could handle it.” Artus added.
Yeah, sure. Charlie thought. He felt the grimoire pulse.
“Brother, no! The battle is over!” Brutus called as the spell-book opened of its own volition. The voice of Tashi Myrdhynn echoed in the manor. Sanna glowed with a blue aura, her eyes glowing the blue of the mind-control spell.
“What’s happening?” Charlie asked.
“Match-magic!” Brutus exclaimed as the aura reached out, wrapping itself around Annemarie. The Druidess’ eyes glowed blue. The aura disappeared, and so did the eye-glows.
“Master.” Annemarie moaned, sinking to her knees. “I am Annemarie, Slave of Charlie.” Charlie took the book from her hands and told her to get to her feet.
“The book has copied the spells from Sanna on to Annemarie.” Brutus said.
“Which means we’ll both die if I try to free her.” Charlie sighed. He glared down at the book. “You asshole.” He handed the book to Artus. “Annemarie, go get anything important from your place and move it here. Looks like you’re joining the harem.”
“Oh, thank you, Master!” Annemarie enthused. She rushed out through the front door, promising to return as soon as possible.
“Sanna, I think we’re going to spend the rest of the evening learning warding spells. Let’s head to the workroom.”
“Yes, Master.” Sanna said.
The two male Myrdhynns were gone when Annemarie returned, carrying what appeared to be an empty backpack. In reality, it was a gateway to a pocket dimension—she could carry anything and everything she could fit through the drawstring opening. Once, she had even used it to smuggle her teacher past guards ensorcelled to attack and kill anything male that tried to approach a temple sacred to the Amazons. Now it contained all of her worldly possessions—now her Master’s worldly possessions.
She was a little nervous. Unlike her younger sister, she had never used magic to emphasize her assets—only smooth out her flaws and keep herself in the vibrant health of a woman in her twenties—and had been too busy hunting her sister to seek the pleasure of a man. Would Master find her pleasing? She walked upstairs and found the master bedroom. Master was waiting for her. She put the backpack in a chair and knelt beside her sister.
“Nervous, Annemarie?” he asked.
“Yes, Master.” she admitted. “I...I’ve never...”
“You’re a virgin?” Master asked. Annemarie nodded sadly. “We’ll have to fix that, won’t we? Amelie, help your sister out of her clothes.”
“Yes, Master.” Amelie said. Annemarie rose to her feet to make it easier, slipping off her boots. It felt strange to be on the same side after all this time. Amelie untied the belt of Annemarie’s robe and hung the robe on the back of the chair. Annemarie shucked out of her undertunic. She saw how big Amelie’s breasts were and was ashamed of hers. Amelie undid Annemarie’s bra, while Annemarie stepped out of her panties. Master beckoned her to him and kissed her. Her soul delighted in the contact of his lips on hers. His fingers caressed the furry slit between her legs, and her hips reacted instinctively. He massaged and stretched and stimulated her nether hole, preparing the way.
“This is going to sting at first.” he warned. He put his penis inside her, and it did sting at first. He held still until she had recovered enough to continue. His cock was thick and long and felt gigantic in her tight hole. Pleasure blossomed in her center and spread through her in waves like the ripples from a large stone thrown into a pond, and she cried out. She panted, her eyes cloudy with a newly-awakened need which only her Master could fulfill.
Fulfill her he did, his staff thrusting into her center again and again as she rode a rollercoaster of pleasure. She screamed as a larger burst of pleasure made itself known to her, and then his seed was spilling into her body. She passed out with a smile and her Master’s name on her lips.
She awoke to find Master gone, but Amelie was curled up beside her. “Master?” she asked, looking around.
“Gone to class.” Amelie said sleepily. Annemarie gave a lonely sigh. “He’ll be back this afternoon, American time. Then we can serve him some more.” Annemarie felt a shiver of anticipation. She cuddled closer to her sister.
“Amelie...why did you turn evil?” Annemarie asked.
“Our uncle spent most of my childhood beating the mercy out of me when he wasn’t training me in the ways of black magic. When I broke his geas, the first thing I did was kill him. After that, I was obsessed with becoming the most powerful mage in the world so no one could ever hurt me again. I never realized what an empty existence it was until Master bounced my spell back at me, and taught me what it was to be completely and utterly devoted to someone other than myself.”
“Myself, I lived only to bring you to justice. I struggled as hard to avoid distraction as I did to increase my powers so I could stop your...well, that’s over now.”
“Yes. We’re together again, sister, as it should be.”