Aug 10 2014

A Review of A Succubus for Remembrance and Other Tales of Femme Fatales by M.E. Hydra

A Succubus for Remembrance and Other Tales of Femme Fatales by M.E. Hydra

A Succubus for Remembrance and Other Tales of Femme Fatales by M.E. Hydra

It has been far too long that I have not reviewed a collection of stories by one of my favourite authors M.E. Hydra.

I reviewed his first collection called A Succubus for Christmas and Other Tales of Devilish Delights here on the Tale. The second collection called A Succubus for Valentine’s Day and Other Tales of Perilous Pleasures I reviewed here on the Tale as well.  The third collection called A Succubus for Halloween and Other Tales of Terrifying Temptresses, can be found here. And a review of their full length novel, Succubus Summoning 101, is here on the Tale. The fourth, called A Succubus for Freedom and Other Tales of Obscene Orgies can be found here.

It has been too long since I read their work and for that I am sorry as it never should have been this long. Today on the tale I will be reviewing the fifth work by this author A Succubus for Remembrance and Other Tales of Femme Fatales.

This collection tells of:

Think paranormal erotica is only about sparkly vampires and fluffy werewolves? Think again! You’re about to enter the bizarre and twisted universe of M.E. Hydra. His sexy succubi and other assorted femme fatales will give you a wild ride, but be careful they don’t eat you whole in the process.

This, his fifth collection, contains thirteen tales of the darkest erotica. A terrifying succubus wreaks vengeance on a group of former soldiers in “A Succubus for Remembrance”. A man is sent by his therapist to an unusual nudist camp in “Iron Girders and Steel Springs”. Two lovers look to a magical artefact to solve their problems in “The Skinning Knife”. A sinister mobster engages sexy diabolic help to demonstrate “Ways to Break a Good Man, #1” (and no.2 and 3). Bizarre and imaginative sex demons abound in a triptych of tales set in the hell-space universe. Also includes an extra bonus tale, “Nazi vs. Succubus,” for lovers of extreme, no-holds-barred fiction.

Prepare to be surprised, shocked and aroused by these and other tales of fiendish femme fatales. They’ll give you pleasures beyond your wildest dreams, and terrors beyond your darkest nightmares.

Once again, as in previous reviews of this author’s works, I will be reviewing the individual stories and then the work as a whole:

A Succubus for Remembrance – A story of revenge asked for and given. But the truth, even when known, does not set you free from a Succubus. The story is a mix of mystery and detective with a splash of erotica to carry the story along which works very well. The setting, being in the UK, reads very well and the dialog and thoughts of the characters match the setting well, there’s little doubt you are there as the story unfolds. I rather liked the succubus herself in that she isn’t quite the stereotypical evil being, but has shades of grey within her. The ending is a bit of a twist, and it shows that the truth can’t always set you free, but it can haunt you forever. Five out of five pitchforks.

The Skinning Knife – Two lovers find that the old saying of what lies underneath the skin matters the most is so very true. This isn’t quite what you might expect the story to be about at the beginning, considering what hints are given. What follows is a remarkable reflection on some truths in our world that run so very deep and are, truly, so very sad. While there is a tinge of a horror aspect to the story, the real horror is in what the two lovers see in the world around them. The ending was, for me, a truth that really needs to be seen by more. Five out of five pitchforks.

Vernon the Volunteer – The first of three interconnected stories in H-Space by this author where humanity has opened a portal to another world, and the natives aren’t exactly friendly. A new group of soldiers arrives and a volunteer is needed. Vernon does so and meets one of the locals as the rest of the soldiers watch. What Vernon encounters is a succubus, and she “explains” things to them all. As a whole I think this is one of the few H-Space stories that I enjoyed because of the way the story played out, the characters in the story, and how the story closed. I have to admit that the name of the succubus was… odd… to put it mildly, but she was a succubus, there’s no doubt of that in her actions, her use of mind control, and what she does. Five out of five pitchforks.

Trent the Traitor  – The second of three interconnected stories in H-Space by this author. Trent has betrayed his follow soldiers in the hopes of surviving. The succubi have promised him a reward, and he finds out what they mean by that. The story actually lays out quite a lot about the succubi in H-Space which really hasn’t been touched on so far. The question of what they are like when they aren’t around humanity is an interesting thought and that is explored in quite a lot of detail here. The story does dip more into the horror side of things than then erotic, but setting aside the reward that Trent receives and how that happens, I thought it added a lot to this universe as a whole. Four out of five pitchforks.

Hugh the Hero – The last of three interconnected stories in H-Space. Survivors of the succubus attack attempt to flee, but they have a human monster in their midst… and the succubi have plans for them all. In this work there is a human monster that in the end has a measure of justice done. In that comes more of the world that adds a lot to what is going on there that hasn’t been touched on before in this series. A bit more horror than erotic, but an interesting story to consider and think about. Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

Slugjob – A man goes out on a date having a hidden agenda… but then the woman he goes out with has one of her own… And soon he’ll know what that is. A unique story that has a bit of a mind game that plays out between the two characters before the secret is revealed and the horror and erotica falls into place. One of the more unique stories that I have read from this author. Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

Iron Girders and Steel Springs – A man is sent to a rather special out of the way spa for a weekend. Things become a little heated and one woman garners his attention and helps him to discover what he had lost. Overall, this is a lovely sweet story that has just a little tiny bit of horror nipping at the edges of it. The two main characters are the focus of the story and the balance of the characters are just on the edges, giving some flavour to the story. I really liked this story very much in that the main characters just fit together so amazingly well. There are secrets, and that of the male lead character are tragic and that story, along with what happens between the two of them is just wonderful. Five out of five pitchforks.

Ways to Break a Good Man #1  – The first of three stories about a mobster that just happens to have a collection of succubi working for him, an ongoing series from this author that has had some really interesting ideas wrapped up in it. A politician is causing trouble and in order to solve that problem, he’s asked to play a game with one very special and powerful succubus. The story is, for the most part, a very good example of a succubus that plays a game with a mortal that she knows, from the beginning, she will win… it’s just a matter of time and pushing the right buttons to get what she wants. There’s a lot of mind games being played as the story progresses, but with that it’s quite clear that the succubus herself is very powerful and knows all of the ways there are to bend someone to her will. Five out of five pitchforks.

Ways to Break a Good Man #2 – The second of three stories about a mobster that just happens to have a collection of succubi working for him. Another politician is causing problems for another mobster and a succubus takes care of the problem. A bit of an odd story in that the succubus’ appearance is a very unique one. Certainly it is one that I have never seen before and how that is handled in this story works very well overall. Four out of five pitchforks.

Ways to Break a Good Man #3 – The last of three stories about a mobster that just happens to have a collection of succubi working for him, though this story has the appearance of being connected if not actually saying so. An inspector is working late on a case and every so often notices a woman standing across the street waiting for something. By the end of the night it is clear she has been waiting for him. Quite a lot of seduction followed by a touch of succubus mind control that I thought worked really well. There isn’t any horror really in the work, and in that I think it made the story better. Five out of five pitchforks.

Vampiric Boobies – Another in a series of stories about a strip club where things aren’t exactly what they seem to be. A man talks with a stripper and she tells him she has “vampiric boobies”. He soon finds out she wasn’t joking. A unique story, one with a trap that I thought was well created and the character that goes along with them was interesting beyond her appearance. The story has a bit of mind control but there’s a shade more horror than erotica. Four out of five pitchforks.

Street-Walking with a Succubus – A story about a Succubus, a good man, and the bad one that  brings them together. The one single succubus character that this author has created and that I adore most of all is Nicole. And this is a Nicole story that is simply wonderful. She is, and always has been nothing like the stereotypical succubus, not horrific or evil. She has her own ideas about the right thing to do, why she does so, and what that means. The story begins in a way where you think you know the next part of the story, but then it takes a curve for a moment, the true story comes out and it just makes me like Nicole even more. There is a sweetness, a joy in what she does and I think in doing so, in what she gives in the story to someone that really hasn’t seen that in their life. Just wonderful and really it just makes me happy to see her again. I still want a book about Nicole though. I’m still as serious as ever about that. This story just brings that into sharper focus. Five out of five pitchforks.

Nazi vs. Succubus – The horrors of the past are more than they are on the surface. Especially when a succubus is at the core of them. There is a lot of effort put into this story and it really does show. There is a warning before this work and I can see why that warning is there as the story does tend to push things on occasion. But it is written well and in that comes a story that is hard to read at times, but then that is the point i think honestly. It is horrific, there’s no doubt about that and in that I admit it did make me rather uncomfortable in reading the story. Still, the characters are very good, the succubus is truly evil, and what happens in the story is a reflection on some of the darkest times in history. But then considering the title of this story it has to be. Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

I’ve said before that this author writes a long, detailed, character driven story that their talents truly shine. This is true in this collection as well and it’s good to see them remaining strongly tied to their writing, their characters and more. There were quite a number of stories in this collection that I enjoyed and the writing quality of this author stepped up greatly from their previous work. But I still want to see a Nicole novel. Please?

I’ll give this collection four and a half out of five pitchforks.

Another example of an author that knows their craft, knows their characters and remains true to them. A wonderful read and enjoyed as always…



Aug 09 2014

Thoughts about the film Ancient Succubi…

I came across a trailer for a film called Ancient Succubi a while ago and… well, I can’t say that I’m all that thrilled by it from the trailer alone. Mind you, it’s not all that often that I like Succubi films in the first place… Still, I had hopes before I saw the trailer and now? Not so much so…

And if you cannot see the trailer here on the Tale, try this link:

Please note, that the trailer is rather violent in nature…

The plot summary is:

In the heart of desire arrives an ancient torment – the Succubi.

Devouring the soul of man.

A woman finds herself alone with a strange man. No comprehension of what came before or what will happen. An ancient evil takes hold and suddenly life changes. The Succubi are here. Prepare for a mind bending trip into the darkest recesses of your mind; prepare to witness a body taken, a soul eradicated, a human become evil itself. One by one the men will fall victim to the sickest of deaths.

I’ll be very honest and say up front that I am not looking forward to seeing this film for a lot of reasons, not the least of which is the little bits of horror and pain that are so very prevalent in this trailer. I don’t care of that sort of thing as many know and as well I expect more from the Succubi in films than being evil and destructive.

If the film’s trailer is accurate, and yes we all know how likely that might be, then it seems to be one violent action after the next and not a lot else happening for the length of the film. That’s disappointing for a lot of reasons, not the least of them being that there are several Succubi in this film and I would think that at least one of them might be different from the others in some way, shape or form.

It seems like Succubi in films are falling back into being tropes and not much else again, and that will be my biggest disappointment if that turns out to be true. Oh there are hints in the trailer that it could be something more, but after seeing that film summary I’m no longer expecting that…

Still, I will see the film… I might not like it much, but I’ll give it a chance to disappoint me as I always do…



Aug 08 2014

A Review of Her Dreams Come True by Miranda Heart

Her Dreams Come True by Miranda Heart

Her Dreams Come True by Miranda Heart

One thing that I look for in story writing is that the characters have a strong, clear voice. I want to be able to read their words and know who is speaking. It is important that they do not jumble into the same voice throughout the story for that is confusing and bothersome.

The other thing that I find interesting is seeing events take place from two vastly different realities. There is the reality of though that cannot see all around them and then the reality of those that can do so. But sometimes reality bites both sides of the story…

  • Title: Her Dreams Come True
  • Author: Miranda Heart
  • Publishing Date: February 24, 2013
  • Length: 14,000 Words
  • ISBN: 9781937809133
  • This work at

It is the story of:

Shunning all that is holy, Annabelle’s soul now hangs in the balance. A gift from a witch seals her fate and thrusts her into the waiting arms of an incubus. The incubus, not being quite as evil as his Master gives Annabelle a way out. She now has one night to save her family and her soul.

Rediscovering love and finding his soul is the last thing Roshan has on his mind. Out of curiosity he’s worn the gifted necklace for months with no sign of his intended bride. So it was nothing for him to offer shelter during a terrible storm to a beautiful maiden. How surprising that the poor orphaned girl would turn out to be the one that would bring light into his soul. He has only one night to find the love he thought he’d lost all those years ago.

This is the story of Annabelle in truth and all of the other characters revolve around her. She has a destiny she has been told, and a means to know when she discovers it. But her belief wanes and ebbs and in doing so beings are drawn to her. They tempt her, trying to turn her from the promise. Try to make her give up her soul and lose everything.

All of them… Save one that is.

Leonides is an Incubus and his appointed mission is to claim Annabelle’s soul, but he was once human and he remembers his past unlike Baltmar, who commands him or Katarina, the Succubus that took him. In spite of the threat to himself he offers Annabelle answers in dreams that might guide her to her salvation… and more.

There is so much emotion in the thoughts of Annabelle throughout the story. She hurts and doubts, suffers and more. All around her there are those that press upon her, demand from her and she is worn more and more each day. The scenes are difficult to read at times, as she faces so much loss and pain with each passing moment.

Elsewhere in this world, Roshan also has been told a fate, a promise, one that he does not believe but still holds within him. He too has been challenged by the powers around him to fall into despair and loss, to give up what he has.

But one Incubus can make a difference and in doing so, his own world might change as well.

Leonides, Baltmar and Katarina are in truth supporting characters in the story, but their moments are as striking and compelling as that of Annabelle and Roshan. They have their own wants and needs, their own pasts and they deal with their own world’s problems that are falling around them as well. Occasionally kafkaesque, their parallel story with the main one is as gripping and holds its own.

The world created in the story, though only glimpsed at, is a tapestry in which the characters are deeply woven into. This is not pure erotica, not by any means though there are moments of desire and passions shown. It is about the story, about making choices and in the end that makes this a better story.

My only real issue was that at the end of the story there are a few questions left unanswered, events promised and not seen that I would have liked to. The promised futures for all of the characters would have been nice to see if only for a bit more than they are.

Four out of five pitchforks.

Just a lovely, emotional read with characters that I cared about. I just would have liked to see where the repercussions of what happened seemed to be going towards and what they meant…



Aug 07 2014

Succubi Image of the Week 343

I’ve featured an artist from DeviantArt called hooksnfangs several times before here on the Tale in the past. I came across another of their Succubus works and she just made me smile… So she is the Succubi of the Week this time…

Succubus - Bethany by hooksnfangs

Succubus – Bethany by hooksnfangs

You can find the original page with this work here and this artist’s page on DeviantArt can be found here as well…

She looks like a mix of the Warcraft and Castlevania Succubus I think, and to be honest if either of those Succubi looked like her I think it would be a vast improvement. She has the neatest expression of amusement that I have seen in some time as well. Love the outfit, the boots and stockings just look right on her by far. And the tail? That just makes me smile so very much…

I’m a little disappointed in her torn wings, which I never really like on any Succubus really, but overall they do seem to work with her style and appearance. I also like that she as a presence, a personality that seems to be, in a way, temptation.

She is just a cute Succubus with quite a lot of personality and a story that would be interesting to write sometime.. I’ll have to ponder that…



Aug 06 2014

Yet another new low in Devil Costumes…

Ugly CostumeI know that I keep going on about how bad… truly bad… so many costumes are. But for this week we reach a new low in awfulness that I think will be something very hard to surpass…

And I cannot understand why the model is smiling…

This is called simply Devil Costume, and it comes with the usual things, but also one thing that does give me pause. You get the jacket, the skirt, the collar, and the horns of course, but the twist in this costume is that the top coms with a… well… it comes with foam cleavage… The shoes and trident are not included.

It sells for $50 US, but can be found for less.

It’s… well… awful isn’t that strong a word I think really. So much overwhelming tackiness that whomever is wearing this has to be drowning in it.

It’s another example of something I wouldn’t touch with a fifty-foot pitchfork and that’s not an exaggeration really. It looks tacky, ugly, unflattering, not at all sexy in any way, shape or form.

It’s obviously a zero out of five pitchforks costume with no hope whatsoever of making it any better…



Aug 05 2014

A Review of To Summon A Succubus by C. T. LaCreme

To Summon A Succubus by C. T. LaCreme

To Summon A Succubus by C. T. LaCreme

Personally I prefer that Succubi have strong personalities. That they are aware that they have power, desire, and need. But also that they have within them the knowledge of right from wrong and what that means.

To be a leader, to have that, means you need to be more, give more, act more. Every fault and need around you is something so very plain to see… but are your own as well? It’s an important question.

The work tells the story of:

Jakira’s life as the head succubus of her coven is turned upside down when an unwilling human,Tony, is thrown into her domain. One harmless SEXT by Tony’s friend turns Jakira’s and Tony’s lives into an adventure that will never be forgotten.

Tony is dragged into a situation that he never expected to be in because of the ill advised decisions of a friend. Drawn to be at the mercy of Jakira, his greatest fears cause him to pause. But then he discovers that fear is nothing compared to a single promise.

Tony is a mystery. Really that is the only way that I can talk about him as there are some rather huge gaps in his story, which are alluded to. Beyond that, his reactions to what Jakira does in their encounters has a bit of oddness to them as well. That’s not to say that he isn’t interesting, for he is, but as the story progresses his “voice” in the story changes and I’m not sure why that was.

Jakira is the main Succubus character of the work and she is a very strong, wise, and focused Succubus. She has a goal, an important one, and woe to any that get in the way of that. Except for Tony. Her attraction to him and vice versa is a wonderful thing to see and it allows the mask to be taken away from Jakira, the one she shows to all around her, and that changes her as the story goes on. Like Tony, her “voice” changes through the story, but in her case I just had issues with the changes that came. Jakira the powerful seductress becomes less as the climax of the story arrives and honestly that bothered me.

While with Tony, she grew in character, emotion, and more and that was wonderful. More so when Jakira allowed Tony to be dominant over her. It wasn’t hurtful or awful… It was right for their characters in that moment and I loved every moment of it. When things turn wrong, the pain and hurt she feels was right for where she was, but, of course, her stubbornness makes her do the wrong thing for the right reasons.

That brings me to Ryland, the main Incubus of the work. Ugly. Unashamedly so. All that he seemed to care about was inflicting pain and forcing himself on others and to my own views, this is completely unacceptable. I do understand that there needs to be conflict, but when he appears is is simply brutal and did nothing for me.

Jakira’s coven and their method of feeding was rather unique and worked well, though the problems they have with technology were amusing and silly sometimes. I wasn’t too thrilled with the need for them to feed on both sex and blood. I’ve never really enjoyed the concept of Succubi or Incubi needing blood because that seems too vampiric for my tastes. Allowing that they feed from blood at the height of sex made some sense at least.

We do see several different kinds of Succubi and Incubi which I thought was fascinating, and when Jakira’s true form appears, it worked well for me as a whole, and, I have to admit, what Ryland really looks like is a reflection of his own horrors and darkness within. In that the author does give a lot of depth to the characters and that was well done.

The climax of the work left me wanting, but then it leads into a second work quite obviously. Still, the brutality of it just completely took away any sort of heat there was for me in the story and I found myself skimming the last few pages because it was just too much for my tastes.

There are several small word and spelling errors which need to be taken care of. Otherwise the characters are strongly written, the erotica is well done and as a whole it is an engrossing read. But the mixture of vampire and Succubus/Incubus really didn’t work that well for me and beyond that the actions of Ryland at the end completely turned me off.

Three out of five pitchforks.

I don’t like the concept of Succubi feeding through blood and sex. Honestly that makes them more vampiric than anything else… and they are not. Personally I find that it took a lot of what I enjoyed from the story and muted it. I will look for the second work, mainly because I think that both Jakira and Tony are more than they seem to be. I really hope that’s true because beyond them their universe seems so very awful in comparison to the two of them.



Aug 04 2014

Flight of the Just Bee by James

A story this week by my heart, one that tells a story that I do need to remember and hold more than I do by far… Sometimes you just have to be.


Flight of the Just Bee
By James


Lil was the Queen of the Succubi’s favorite knitter. Come to think of it, Lil made just about every sweater, scarf, and tail cozy worn in the Succubi Realm, unless it has been brought from some other world, and she had as long as anybody could remember. Best of all, just about everybody left a fitting with Lil feeling a special spring in their step—except after certain tail cozy fittings, where folks just needed to go lie down and quietly pleasure themselves until dinner. This was a succubi who seemed to have a deep and abiding appreciation of and knowledge for the succubi and incubi forms.

The Queen’s favorite knitter had a special fondness for Her Majesty’s Eternal, because he was clearly so devoted to Tera and never wanted to play silly power games with her. That made him an ideal incubi in Lil’s book and an excellent role model for all males everywhere. But she had a special connection with the Queen Herself, as the only living succubi—or succubus of any kind, or living being of any kind, for that matter—with whom Lil had ever shared her complete nature, and with whom she shared a unique set of experiences. Best of all, for the knitter, any time she wanted some time with the Queen, Tera felt and responded to a deep need to see her.

Until a few days ago, that is.

Lil had been thinking about Her Majesty, her own red tail undulating all morning at the thought of a visit. She had the most wonderful red yarn with bits of green threads running through it whose shine matched Tera’s soooo green eyes. She was quite ready to show this to the young Queen, and show her other things. She was occasionally biting her lower lip and running a hand through her silver-streaked black hair in a kind of anticipation she hadn’t felt in untold years, one which continued growing as the day went on.

Tera had been especially busy doing what Tera always does—looking out for friends, advising her daughters, supporting her Eternal, planning for the long-term needs of her Realm—only adding ever so much more so every day for the last few months. The . . . desire to . . . visit with Lil grew steadily as the Queen gave of herself with more and more people, running from hither to yon. Of late she had not even allowed herself much time for meals or even the briefest snuggles with her Eternal, who had set a similar pace for himself for several weeks. There were others who needed both of them, and things that needed doing, and there was simply no question, on this particular day, of indulging herself in even the most delightful fitting.

As lunch hour approached, Lil grew impatient, and dusted off her rarely-used computer to send a message to the Royal Succub-I-phone. When she received a reply that simply said “Sorry,” her . . . expectancy nearly slipped into ire.

“Getting angry won’t help, you know.” Lilith turned to see an apparition, a succubi apparition with blonde hair and a plain dress which she managed to make look positively regal.

“She is your daughter! I thought you taught her better manners than this!”

“Now, now . . . you appreciate her behavior well enough the rest of the time, and it is terribly difficult to fault her for being too conscientious.”

“I suppose so,” she shook her dark hair with its very pale streaks. “But this isn’t at all good for her; even a succubi cannot keep up such a pace.”

“I am most aware,” the noble vision replied. “And yet, you of all succubi should know how difficult it is to give advice to daughters.”

“Then maybe I should take the lead,” the timeless succubi smiled. “And I think . . . why, yes! . . . something your great-great-great-grandmother taught me once, to get a similar idea through my own head—she was a rather cheeky one!—should do just the trick.”

Later that afternoon, Tera, rushing from judging the sand castle competition on the Lake of Fire beach (three angelkitties won that with something they’d be able to live in until Remembrance Day) to guest lecturing at the “Seduction 101” class to a meeting with the Library acquisitions committee, found herself in a field of lilies, which were truly in full bloom at this time of year, and filled with busy honeybees doing what bees do. She had decided she wouldn’t be able to go see Lil; how did she get so close to her cottage? Spinning around on the ball of her foot, she was still too slow to avoid the ancient knitter. “Lil, I am so, so sorry, but . . .”

“. . . oh, I know, dearie . . . ummm, Your Majesty: you have a very busy day.” With a remarkably swift and smooth maneuver, she slipped her arm around the Queen’s. Then, suddenly, she changed, standing straighter, becoming taller, seeming younger, her breasts full and perky and her hair as much blacker than Tera’s as her tail and horns were redder. As the succubis’ mouths met in a deep kiss, Tera’s green eyes were swamped by the dark ones before her.

The Queen broke the kiss, unsure whether to strip naked or curtsey: “Lilith! I am so sorry I hesitated in answering your summons.”

“It is quite all right, my child.” The First stroked Tera’s cheek possessively while scratching tenderly behind her horns: “Still, love, you really need to slow down a bit. There are no promotions to get after queen, you know, and no special prizes for outworking all who came before you.”

“But there is so very much to be done . . .”

“And an entire industrious, gifted, eager race of succubi and incubi to do it. You, sweet morsel, have a more important role than doing sometimes.”

“But people expect me to . . .”

Lilith put a finger to the younger one’s lips, and Tera couldn’t help but suck it for a moment. “Look at these flowers around you. One of . . . well, a relation of mine somehow, born quite a bit after me, said we should pay attention to the lilies. They never do anything, and yet they get all that they need and contribute to the world. You should give that some thought.”

“I have even less time for pondering than I do for sex, Lilith, and . . .” The Succubi Queen was distracted by the buzzing of the bees, until suddenly, she felt a sting on her bum.

“Oh me, oh my,” Lilith seem to flick something off Tera’s derriere, copping a small feel along the way (it was a delicious derriere, after all). “Oh, my sweet, I am afraid that is a Just Bee.”

“A Just Bee?” Tera had never heard of such a thing, but Lilith had been around considerably longer.

“Yes, pet. They are mostly harmless, but, for a short time, your legs will go weak . . .”

Tera felt her legs going weak, and Lilith helped her sit.

“. . . and you won’t be able to speak beyond the occasional ‘mmmm-hmmm’ or ‘uh-uh,’ and maybe . . . just maybe, some nodding . . .”

The Queen’s voice fell silent, and she nodded at the First.

“. . . and this is likely to last until sunset, so just enjoy, baby.”

It was Lil who turned and shuffled toward her cottage as Tera watched, with a vague memory of someone else—Was it the First? No, that was impossible—as the knitter went away.

Tera fumed for a while, then began to notice the colors of the lilies playing in the sunlight as their blooms bobbed and weaved among the and marvelled at the creative ideas bouncing around her head. The acquisitions committee found her there in the meadow full of flowers sat down around her, and began their business. All the Head Librarian really had to do was offer an encouraging nod from time to time; her staff really knew their jobs spectacularly well, and the meeting was done within 45 minutes.

About half an hour later, Keith came by, wondering at the rumors that his Eternal was sitting in a field of lilies. The bees were still buzzing, and she couldn’t warn him away, though Lil was sidled up next to him in a shot, and surely she would . . . no, in a moment he was stung, and then sitting next to his bride.

After some more panic and fuming, the two of them settled in to notice the wondrous rhythm of life in the Realm. While they sat, there were smiles from passersby, who were inspired by their rulers sitting quietly and enjoying one another’s company and the beauty of the day. With simple nodding and approving sounds—and one wrinkly nose from Tera—they helped Vvrayven choose new wallpaper and paint for most of her house, and advised FreezeFrame on how to deal with a recalcitrant assignment in the human realm. They even assisted Irving and Miriam in resolving their argument about best possible sexual positions to try during trans-dimensional bampfing. They even managed to hold each other’s hands, spending long quiet times bathed in the glory of the world around them and the companionship they valued most in life.

As the sun began to set over the Lake of Fire in the distance, Lil returned. “Are you able to stand and move, dears?”

It had been some time since they had even considered it, but, almost instantly, they realized that they were, standing, stretching, falling into a warm embrace that got warmer by the second. They profusely thanked Lil for looking out for them. “You are always there when we need you, and we’re grateful,” Keith gushed. “And, you know what,” he beamed at his beloved for a moment, “it was really nice to just be quiet. Both of us, I think, really need to do that more.”

The old succubi smiled and wished them a good night. The warmth of the embrace they had just shared inspired them to go home and do other things they needed to do more often. Hours later, as Keith wandered to the kitchen to find a couple sandwiches—they had been in the flowers during lunch, and enjoying each other during dinner—Tera slipped into her bathroom to freshen up just a touch.

There was Lilith, just as naked as her hostess, and able to see every inch of Tera’s sudden blushing. Just the presence of the First in all her sexuality made Her Majesty’s pulse quicken while her nipples became diamond hard. Lilith smiled at this effect as she placed a golden pin on the vanity.

“What is that?”

“Oh, I have a little confession. That was what stung both of you,” the First purred while stroking the younger one’s hair. “The ‘Just Bee’ is entirely a fiction, based on a lesson taught to me by one of your bolder and tastier ancestors, and powered entirely by my abilities for suggestion.” She smiled to herself: “It’s nice to see I’ve still got it.”

Tera was perturbed with the subterfuge, but still couldn’t help but stroke Lilith’s arm while she responded: “You were trying to teach me a lesson.”

“Yes, my delicious friend. So much of what makes both of you important to all of us here is that you are. You accomplish mountains of good by being, and you could destroy yourselves by doing too much.”

“I have a friend who has tried to tell me that. I promise, we will try to let go and just be more.”

“Good,” she said as they pulled together for a nova of a kiss. Then Lilith turned her Queen around and sent her back to the bedroom, stroking her tail and tweaking the scalloped end. “And the next time I want you, be sure to come . . . and cum . . . right away.”