Mar 17 2013

A Review of Dominant Dreams by Cerys du Lys

Dominant Dreams by Cerys du Lys

Dominant Dreams by Cerys du Lys

This week I will be reviewing the first of two works by the author Cerys du Lys. The first has an Incubus as one of the main characters and next week’s will be her Succubus themed story.

Perhaps the most interesting part of this week’s work is that there is a stark difference between the “real world” and the “dream world” which defines not just the characters themselves, but the means to which they find themselves existing within these worlds.

The work tells of:

Nina dreams of a life where she can study, be intelligent, and do something with her life. Her husband, Edwin, is too busy with his business and too old-fashioned in his ways to allow her any freedoms outside of their quiet country manse, though.

At least, that is, until one night Nina’s dream takes on a life of its own. Gideon, an incubus, enters her dream and accepts her inquisitive nature. When she plays a game with the demon, one which results in a mind-blowing climax, she wants more.

But Gideon’s next game is more than she bargained for. He demands complete and utter obedience from her, or there will be consequences. Not one to back down, and wanting to become a person of legend for besting a demon, Nina accepts.

When she disappoints him with her mouth, and he tosses her over a rock to gain his pleasure in another way, Nina is conflicted. Gideon is rough, but so much more real to her than Edwin could ever be.

Except this is a dream, isn’t it?

The comparison between the world that Nina lives everyday with her husband and that of Gideon I think is best described as blandness compared to a banquet of sights, sounds and more. There is a very clear delineation between a world were Nina cannot see love or passion or find a way to make her life mean something more versus that which Gideon presents to her. It is a dream, but then some dreams are, truly, more real than reality is aren’t they?

In a way, that is the core of this story. A comparison between that which one has and that which one desires. And occasionally that desire is offered by an Incubus who desires something in return.

Gideon is, if not the stereotypical Incubus, then at least has some of the appearance of one. But not in an over the top way which adds a certain amount of mystery to him. Is this his true form or simply a show for Nina? On this point we are never quite sure save to say that he does have horns and not ones that are silly or over the top which I appreciated. Past that point, he is the image of sexuality, he is an Incubus of course, I would not expect less from him, and he does deliver on that point throughout the story.

Nina is not quite the innocent in this story. She is frustrated and in need because of her marriage and that opens the door within her dreams for Gideon to make his play for her. The work feels like it is set in the times of “proper” women who doted on their husbands, were made to be at home, and not be more than they are. Nina rails against this from the beginning of the story and, in truth, looking at her life from the perspective of today it is not anything like I would call enjoyable at all.

Still, it is her situation, her life and in Gideon she finds what she feels is a release from that world. However while at first it is her dream, once she meets him, and she knows, vaguely, what he is, then the dream slips away from her and into Gideon’s control. He has a goal and that goal fits with the mythos of the Incubi quite well. But the thing that makes the change different is that Nina is simply dominated by Gideon.

Personally I have a problem with a lot of stories about domination. That problem is that reading about pain and torture wrapped within what is claimed to a a story… Isn’t. A story, when it done well has the dominance as supporting the rest of what happens within it. In this work the dominance exists, but it isn’t made to be hurtful or injurious in nature. There are moments of punishment, of testing one’s strength and finding their weakness. But the crassness, the lack of desire isn’t part of that as it is in many works that touch on this theme. It made what would have otherwise been less than interesting to me a lot more so.

Overall, the story flowed well, the characters were lovely complicated beings… well except for Nina’s husband and I feel like there was something unsaid about him that would add a level to this work if I am right in my thinking about him. The writing is descriptive where it should be, the heat in the erotica is lovely and paints the picture in your thoughts quite well. There is no doubt of who is controlling whom when those moments occur and the decent into submission is a vert carefully crafted art that had the right amount of heat to sustain the story as a whole.

I’m giving this work four out of five pitchforks.

Lovely writing, the characters, even those that have no soul within them, are well fleshed out and feel very real. Lovely heat at the right moments and a story that takes the mythos of the Incubi and takes it to a place that isn’t done well. This time it was.

Next week, the second review of this author’s work which deals with a Succubus that is a little bit different than what one might expect them to be.

 

Tera

Mar 16 2013

A lovely Morrigan Aensland wings headband costume idea…

I found another piece of costume accessories on etsy.com that I think would be perfect for those who wish to cosplay as the succubus Morrigan Aensland… I personally think that creating her headwings has to be the most difficult part of any good costume of her and this creation does that really well I think…

Morrigan Aensland Batwing Headband by Octopus Stew

Morrigan Aensland Batwing Headband by Octopus Stew

This is called the Morrigan Aensland Batwing Headband, and is by Octopus Stew on etsy.com, and you can find the page with this item on sale for $35 US here. You can also find more of this artist’s works, which are mainly in sculpture, here on their artist’s page.

They are handcrafted obviously, and there is as well quite obviously a lot of care and skill that has been placed into them, which I must give the artist many many thanks for. I also think that it is wonderful of them to allow a vast colour palette of choices for those wishing to buy these wings as that gives a great deal of options for costume design and that’s an important thing…

It’s not possible to really have a good idea of the craft that goes into this costume accessory here, but when you see them for real, and I have, they are quite simply perfect in every possible way…

Please do visit their page and have a look!

 

Tera

Mar 15 2013

Bo should learn not to play with weird games…

The week’s episode made me wonder about a few things. One of the main ones being, are the writers purposely trying to make sure that Bo cannot possibly have a relationship with either Lauren or Dyson? I wonder because with all of the interwoven things going on with them, and the new characters arriving to put themselves into Bo’s life, it seems like it. We go down this path over and over again it seems and, really, I’ve had enough of it. It’s getting old and worn out and they can stop any time please?

The other thing that bothers me is how they can put a huge cliffhanger in the previous episode with Kenzi and then completely ignore it or bring it to a resolution except to say that she’s not around because she can’t be while Bo is doing her training. Seriously? That’s a cheap thing and really I didn’t like that at all. There should have been an episode before this one to close that thread with Kenzi and they didn’t. That’s just sloppy.

The eighth episode of the third season, also episode forty-three of the Lost Girl TV series was this week. Bo is forced to help someone she didn’t expect to. Tamsin kisses someone that she didn’t expect to either. Lauren goes out with someone she didn’t expect and Trick just does a lot of unexpected things…

Lost Girl Logo

This is the eighth review of the third season of of Lost Girl. A summary of this episode has been added to the SuccuWiki, but won’t be adding my commentary to the articles there as that is what the Tale is for….

Bo finds that occasionally you have to decide to…

Fae-ge Against The Machine

The episode opens with Bo (Anna Silk) blindfolded and stumbling through the Dal Riata with Stella (Deborah Odell) watching as she searches for a cricket that can be heard in the background. Stella asks Bo if she wants to find the Zambi cricket of good fortune as she bumps her shins for the umpteenth time. Bo continues to search, complaining that the sound of the cricket is bouncing off the walls around her and Stella’s only help is to tell Bo that she is “warmer.” They enter another room where Trick (Richard Howland) is looking around in amazement at what Hale (K. C. Collins) did to the room he has been using commenting that: “Hale went full speak-easy. Ridiculous.” Stella tells Trick to be quiet as Bo stumbles past him. Bo suddenly stops and Stella tells her to concentrate before Bo ducks down and grabs at something. Standing up again she gleefully cries out “Gotcha!” but opens her hand to find that she has not captured the cricket.

Stella disappointedly tells Bo that the cricket had been behind her the entire time she had been searching for it as she scoops the cricket into a small box and takes it away telling Bo that this had been her last chance to “secure the cricket’s good fortune. Something you desperately need for The Dawning and you failed Bo.” Trick comments that Stella is being harsh and she snaps at him before walking away in a huff. Bo crumples into a chair and tells Trick that she wishes Kenzi (Ksenia Solo) was there. Trick reminds Bo that Stella told her that “humans taint this part of the process.” Bo tells Trick that she will never make it through but he tries to tell her that she is speaking nonsense. Trick adds that The Dawning “is not all horror shows and near death experiences and it is something we all go through.” Bo recites what Trick has said and adds “and it is manageable.” Trick is pleased that Bo has been listening to what he has been telling her. Bo tells of Hale having to drink seven pints of sour Lochness and that Dyson had to suffer through fleas. Bo agrees that she does have a chance and her mood becomes slightly better. Stella returns and Bo asks what she must do next, but is told that she must be given the invitation to enter the temple and now she must wait until that happens. Bo asks: “Please tell me that means sitting on my tired little ass.” Stella’s answer is: “The day is yours” which makes Bo happy and she rushes off. Stella apologizes to Trick for her outburst earlier in the episode and offers to take him to dinner which Trick manages to agree to in surprise. As she turns away and leaves, she adds: “Wear something nice.”

Elsewhere in the Dal Riata, Bo answers a phone call from Lauren (Zoie Palmer). As she speaks with Lauren, Bo sees an odd machine sitting on a table and walks over to it. Idly, as she continues to talk to Lauren, Bo plays with some of the parts of the machine before turning a crank several times. After finishing her call with Lauren she walks away. but as she does so the device begins to make noise and then unfolds as it activates. The scene then switches to a young girl somewhere else sitting and crying with some kind of device on her face as she does so.

After the opening credits, we return to the Dal Riata where Bo is getting ready to leave. Someone sneaks up behind her and covers her eyes and Bo calls out: “If you are a cricket I will totally kill you.” It is revealed to be Lauren who is massively excited about something. Lauren asks Bo how things went and starts talking to her incredibly fast and being very hyperactive. Bo is taken aback and asks: “Are you on crack?” Lauren then shows Bo a letter in which Lauren has been given an award for her work and the banquet is that evening. Lauren admits that she wasn’t their first choice but the other person is a fraud and they caught him in one. Lauren is beside herself and asks Bo if she will be Lauren’s “plus one” and Bo agrees to do so. Bo tells Lauren to “go home and crack some bubbly” and Lauren rushes off in a panic as she tries to figure out what she will wear, what speech she will make and worries that Bo needs a dress as well. As Lauren rushes away, Tamsin (Rachel Skarsten) appears and comments that Bo and Lauren look “cute” together. Tamsin then tells Bo that she is taking her out to lunch. When Bo asks why, Tamsin tells Bo that everyone has been lying to her.

The scene switches to a Dark Fae bar where Tamsin and Bo are sitting down at a table together. Bo questions Tamsin choice of lunch which Tamsin explains is: “Tomato juice, celery, vodka. Looks like lunch to me.” Bo comments that she always thought that a Dark Fae bar would “be more leather and spikes and peanut shells on the floor.” Tamsin’s answer is: “But we have more attitude. Serious attitude.” When Bo asks why there are there, Tamsin explains that there is a good chance that Bo will not make it through The Dawning. Bo tells her that Trick, Hale and Dyson have said that she can make it through the test. Tamsin dismisses this saying that “I have listened to them bullshit you all week. The Dawning is the most brutal thing you ever go though time infinity.” Bo does not believe her, but Tamsin insists that she is trying to help Bo. As their conversation continues, across the bar a man watches the two and sips at his drink.

Elsewhere, at Trick’s place he is trying to decide between two jackets, one of them being leather when Stella walks in all dressed up for the evening and tells Trick “Leather. When in doubt, always go with leather.” As she walks over to Trick, Stella notices the device that Bo had activated earlier in the episode and is concerned about it. Trick looks it over and comments that it is a strange device and it might be Hale’s. When he moves to touch it, Stella stops him and explains that she has seen something like this device before, but never one so complex. She goes on to explain that the device is Bo’s invitation to The Dawning and that it is in the form of a game. When she comments that Bo must have activated the game, it begins to move and change startling them both. Stella tells Trick that the game is ready and that they will have to play the game for Bo. Stella explains that wherever Bo is and whatever she is doing, the game will effect her is some way. Stella tells Trick that since he is Bo’s closest blood relative, he will have to play the game for her and that: “Bo’s immediate future depends on you” as Trick approaches the game and prepares to play it.

Back at the bar, Bo is upset over whatever Tasmin has told her and asks why no one has told her what Tamsin has. Tamsin explains that they are all trying to protect her. Tamsin tells Bo that once she is inside the Temple, it is only her and she is the only one she can depend on. Tamsin tries to explain that Bo has to talk to herself and make herself believe that she can get through the test, but before they can talk about it further, a Dark Fae approaches the table and asks if Bo is, in fact, Bo. He introduces himself and tells Bo that he has wanted to “meet the unaligned Succubus” for years. Tamsin interrupts telling him that if he’s trying to pick up Bo, that it isn’t going to work for him. Two other Dark Fae approach Tamsin and Bo and he continues to talk to Bo asking how she can call herself unaligned when she is: “clearly Light and think that you can walk into one of our bars and play in our sandbox.” Tamsin and Bo stand to defend themselves and off in the distance, the Fae that had been watching them waves to get their attention. Bo tells Tamsin that they need a distraction and Tamsin, with one punch, knocks all three men to the floor as she and Bo run for where the other Fae is waiting for them revealing an exist through which they all escape into the alleyway behind the bar. Outside, the Fae introduces himself as Balzac (Ryan Belleville) and Bo thanks him for his help, saying that she “owes him one” as they shake hands. Tamsin tries to stop Bo but is too late to do so and can only say “crap.” Balzax explains that Bo said that she owed him one and they shook on it. He also tells Bo that: “I’m going to have to call in that favour now. You must help me to find that which I truly seek.” Bo is confused and Tamsin rolls her eyes before explaining to Bo that she has made a deal with a Spriggan and it is binding.

After a commercial break, Bo is incensed saying that: “So I shook hands with a Dark Pixie and now I owe you my IOU?” Balzac agrees that Bo is correct and when she tells him that she doesn’t play by the rules, he tells Bo that she can always try to walk away, but cannot do so. Bo attempts to, but Balzac appears in front of Bo whichever way she turns blocking her way until she stop in frustration. Balzac explains that the favour he needs is to save “cookie” and he really needs the help. He also tells Tamsin that she can leave as she made no agreement with him, but Tamsin refuses saying that she doesn’t want to miss the fun.

Back at the Dal Riata, the game raises a sand timer into the air and flips it over starting a countdown as two images are displayed to Trick on two screens above the game. One shows a lock and key, the other a brick wall. Stella explains that whichever choice he makes will effect Bo, but it may help her or hinder her. Trick tells her that he cannot do this to Bo, but Stella explains that since Bo is a descendant of Trick’s whatever choice she would make would be from his own and therefore he knows the answer already. Trick hesitates as the timer counts down before pulling a lever underneath the image of the brick wall and the timer vanishes from sight. As this happens, Stella tells Trick that they must wait for the result of his choice.

Bo, Tamsin and Balzac in the meantime have arrived at and entered a building. Bo asks how many subbasements the place has and when Balzac’s answer is: “Well, Fang’s secret lair is very, well, secret.” Tamsin is not pleased by this saying that Fang is really bad news. Balzac agrees but also says that: “With that Succubus charm, he’ll be putty in your hands.” Bo asks for assurance that the cookie they are looking to rescue is there and Balzac’s only answer is that “she’s very small.” They arrive at a set of doors and Balzac tries one, finding a brick wall behind it, and then the other, also finding one there as well. Tamsin asks what they do now as Bo approaches the wall between two doors and runs her hand over it slowly. Bo asks if the hideout is so secret, how did they find it so easily? She mumbles to herself about a “catch” and Balzac begins to speak of them taking a wrong turn, but Bo presses against one brick and the wall slides out of the way revealing a secret entrance.

Trick and Stella watch as the image of the brick wall in the game glows for a moment which, according to Stella means that Bo has passed this part of the game. Trick asks what happens if she fails and the answer is that the image would have turned black and the result would not have been good for Bo herself. Bo, Tamsin and Balzac enter the secret room and find an asian man there eating noodles who is Fang (Adrian Nguyen) and Bo comments that “The Tang boss is a teenage hipster?” Balzac warns Bo that Fang is as dangerous as his name would suggest. Trick and Stella watch as a chamber opens in the game and Stella is surprised that this game requires that it be fed from time to time. The games gives the choice of Food or Drink and Trick picks Food which then reveals an image of Yewberries. Stella is not pleased with this, and Trick leaves the room. Meanwhile, Fang orders Bo and the others to sit at his table after telling them that finding their way in was “admirable.” He calls Bo and Tamsin pretty and says that he likes them both and tells them both they should work for him, but Tamsin’s answer is that he’s not her type. He asks what Tamsin’s type is and her answer is: “Well, it’s nothing you would see in a mirror. Poser.” Fang is not happy with this and draws a gun on Tamsin. Bo reaches out and touches Fang on his other wrist and begins to take control of his thoughts and feelings. As this happens, Trick returns with the Yewberries telling Stella that they are poisonous and they effect each kind of Fae differently. Stella agrees saying that some are rendered senseless, some have temporary paralysis. Trick refuses to continue but Stella tells Trick that he has no choice in the matter. Trick relents and throws some Yewberries into the game which then closes the chamber they were put in. Bo has taken control of Fang and as she tells him that he will tell her where cookie is, the effects of the Yewberries hit Bo and her speech is slurred as partial paralysis effects her mouth making it difficult for her to talk and keep control of Fang. Tamsin asks what’s wrong but Bo has no idea as Fang comes out of Bo’s trance and aims his gun at her. Bo tries to tell Balzac where cookie is and when Fang demands they stop talking she grabs the gun from him and turns it towards Fang. Fang tells Bo that she’s made a huge mistake and then Fang is struck in the back by a blow dart and falls dead to the table. Bo and the others rush around behind Fang and Bo opens a chest which contains three fortune cookies and a case for each. As more blow darts fly into the room, Bo selects the middle container and cookie and the three beat a hasty retreat. When Tamsin asks what’s going on, Balzax’s answer is: “Oh, that’s Whitman, he’s trying to kill me” as he follows them out.

After another commercial break, Bo, Tamsin and Balzac are running down an alleyway as Bo tries to speak, but cannot properly for a few moments until the effects of the Yewberries vanishes and she asks what is going on. Balzac has not idea, but when Tamsin asks they Whitman it trying to kill him, Balzac explains that Whitman has something he wants. Bo interrupts him, hands him the cookie that they just obtained from Fang and tells Balzac that since she got him the cookie, she is free of him. However, Balzac explains that it only gives them passage to “what which I truly seek.” He then tells them that they have to get the prescription from the landlady and walks away, claiming that it shouldn’t take more than forty minutes. As they all continue on, Bo answers a phone call from Lauren who is at home all dressed up for the awards banquet and has been drinking. She asks Bo: “Why do chemists like nitrates?” And when Bo asks, realizing it is a joke, Lauren answers: “Because they are cheaper than day rates.” The joke does not go over well however. Lauren presses on telling Bo that she’s glad Bo will be there because she has no idea how she could manage to go otherwise. Bo tells Lauren that she will be late using the excuse that she is doing more training at the Dal Riata and covering up what she is really doing from Lauren. After the call ends, Lauren isn’t very happy and continues to drink.

The next scene has Balzac leading Bo and Tamsin through a forest. Tamsin asks how long they have been walking and Balzac guesses an hour or so which doesn’t make Tamsin or Bo very pleased. Balzac reveals a bit more to them both that they must use the cookie after getting the prescription from the landlady of Brazenwood. When he says this, Tamsin confronts him and Bo asks what is going on. Tamsin explains that Brazenwood is a “dark and lawless territory where the fringe of society, lost souls and the criminally inclined go to live and die.” Balzac tries to brush this off but Tamsin tells him that “it is a hellhole and I am not going past the front gate.” When he attempts to continue on, Bo refuses to continue saying that he has lied about everything so far and she wants the truth or she will not continue. Balzac turns Bo’s words around on her noting that Bo has been lying to Lauren and he calls that not one of the healthiest relationships that he has seen. Bo turns away and tries to leave several times until Balzac pleads saying that they have to save someone called Hannah. Balzac then explains he is a bounty hunter for the Demetrius Institute for Higher Learning which is a school that specializes in giving rare and outcast Dark Fae a home and education. He adds that Hannah is being exploited by Whitman and he needs to save her. Bo considers this for a moment and then tells him that he had been be telling the truth before Bo continues on with Tamsin and Balzac following. The trio then arrives at what appears to be a camp in the middle of nowhere and approach a trailer with a woman sitting outside of it. The woman, who Balzac calls the Landlady (Lauren Ash) tells them they are trespassing, but Balzac informs her that they are there “for the prescription.” She looks over the three of them and then, while looking at Bo says: “You.”

Meanwhile the game changes and Trick is faced with choosing either infinity or a pit of snakes. Stella tells Trick to hurry as the timer seems to be speeding up. The landlady deals out two cards from a deck of tarot cards and tells Bo to choose one of the two cards. Bo hesitates over the cards and at the same time Trick chooses infinity in the game. Bo does not pick either card and instead takes the next card in the deck. The landlady reveals the card to be The Wanderer and seems to be frightened of it. When she lays it on the table, Tamsin says a single word: “Shit.” The landlady tells Bo that no one ever picks that card and Bo tries to dismiss things, but when she turns over the other two cards, they are also The Wanderer and when she looks through the stack, all of those cards are the same as well. The landlady asks who Bo is as Tamsin pushes the cards off the table saying that they did not come here to play games. As this happens, Trick watches the game tell that the correct choice had been made, but then makes Trick choose between Food or Drink. Trick bemoans that the last time he did so, he picked poison, and Stella agrees that his choice: “was surprising.” Trick chooses Drink and an image of an upside down martini glass appears. He assumes that it is Bo’s favourite drink, but Stella tells Trick that in fact is it Bo’s least favourite one. Trick is confused but says: “One Elderberry cocktail with nectar of gnome coming up.” The landlady tells Bo that she is trouble and that her dogs can smell that she is as well. Bo refuses to leave until they have their prescription. When the landlady asks for payment, Balzac gives her a handkerchief which she takes and smells commenting that: “These are some mighty powerful tears.” Balzac tells her that: “Hanna is a mighty powerful girl.” She then opens a prescription pad and makes a single large X on it before handing a slip to Balzac. As he takes the slip, a blowdart flies past them striking one of the dogs. Whitman (Brian Frank) then appears carrying a blowgun and continues to shoot darts at everyone there. The next dart hits the landlady and she slumps unconscious. Tamsin runs off with Bo following her, but Balzac does not leave. He confronts Whitman and takes a dart to his arm as Whitman comes closer falling against the trailer where the dogs are. Bo moves behind Whitman and as Balzac opens the door to the trailer she shoves him inside leaving him to the mercy of the dogs. Balzac tells Bo that there is little time and she must take the prescription and the cookie to get into Brazenwood. Bo doesn’t want to leave, but Balzac insists saying that he would only slow them both down. Bo and Tamsin leave for Brazenwood immediately afterward.

Bo and Tamsin arrive at the gate to Brazenwood and before Bo can push the gate open, Tamsin tells Bo that the area has landmines around it and they cannot force their way in. Tamsin tells Bo they need to pay the toll and she approaches a toll booth just outside of the gate. Ringing a bell there, the door opens to reveal a strange man who says nothing and just looks at the two of them, this being the Gatekeeper (Steven John Whistance). Bo walks up to him and places the container with the cookie in front of him, but he does nothing. Bo then opens the container and breaks the cookie open before reading the fortune within it that reads: “You will always get what you want through your charm and personality.” This seems to make the Gatekeeper happy and he leaves the gate house to open the gate for Bo. She goes there and then stops to offer her hand to Tamsin. Tamsin asks what this is about and Bo explains that Tamsin said she would not go further than the gate and thanks her. Tamsin pushes Bo’s hand down commenting: “Come on. When have you believed anything that I have said?” and walks past Bo to go inside as Bo looks on before following and the gatekeeper closes the gate behind them. They find themselves in what appears to be a town out of the Wild West and as they walk through it, they are watched by those that live there. Tamsin comments: “There are Dark Rules and then there are Dark Rules in Brazenwood and they aren’t the same thing.”

After another commercial break, Tamsin asks Bo what the Wanderer card thing was all about, but Bo’s answer is that she should tell her as she was the one that freaked out over it. Tamsin stops Bo and tells her not to mess with her and if Bo is hiding something she needs to come clean about it. Bo has no idea what Tamsin is talking about and tells her that if she wants to do she should do so. Tamsin tells Bo that she doesn’t want to be in Brazenwood any longer than she has to be. Bo agrees telling Tamsin that she wants out of Brazenwood as soon as possible too. The two continue to look around , Tamsin asking where they should look. Bo comments that they have a prescription so they need to find a pharmacist. Trick in the meantime nas made the drink, complete with an umbrella and Stella tells him to pour it into the game, including the umbrella which Trick does. The game closes the chamber as Stella hopes that Bo can hold her liquor. In Brazenwood, Bo suddenly becomes drunk and starts to stumble and her voice slurs. She then turns to Tamsin and tells her that she knows that Dyson got his love back, but the question she has is if he loves her or not. Tamsin tells Bo that Dyson is: “Crazy loonie for you. You just suck at reading people.” Bo continues on a drunken rant until she pauses and wonders why she feels so weird she then tastes on her lips Elderberry Smash, which is the drink that Trick poured into the game. Bo panics and tells Tamsin to slap her and Tamsin does so, very hard, which snaps Bo out of her drunkenness for a split second before her phone rings with Lauren calling. Lauren is at least as drunk as Bo is and the two have a drunken fight over various things until Lauren hangs up on Bo very angry at her for not keeping her promise. After the call ends, Bo suddenly is no longer drunk and tells Tamsin that she needs an aspirin. Bo then walks off to find the pharmacist, but Tamsin grabs her and takes her in a different direction where that is.

They approach the pharmacist (John Tench) who asks if they have come to “dicker” but Bo hands him the prescription which he reads and then reaches into a black doctor’s bag, putting his entire arm into it before withdrawing a key which Bo takes and moves to open the door to the pharmacy. As Bo does this, the pharmacist approaches Tamsin knowing that she is a Valkyrie and brandishes a pair of scissors asking her to give up a lock of her hair, but Tamsin warns him that if he touches her he will be “an appendage short.” Bo enters the pharmacy to find a young girl crying inside and calls Tamsin over to her. They enter to find Hannah (Allie MacDonald) appearing as she did at the beginning of the episode. Tamsin sighs and comments when she sees Hannah, “You’re a Squonk.” Bo tries to tell Hannah to stop crying, but she tells Bo that she cannot and Tamsin confirms this saying “It’s what Squonks do. But most don’t live to be this age. Their tears are hot on the Fae drug trade.” Bo nonetheless tries to comfort Hannah and tells her that she’s safe now and she can come with them, but Hannah refuses to do so.

Back from commercial, Bo again tries to have Hannah leave with them, but she tells Bo that Whitman has told her horrible things about the world outside and she is frightened of it. Bo explains that he is doing this so she will make more tears and Hannah’s answer is that at least her tears make people happy. Bo tells her that she can be happy, but Hannah tells Bo that she is a “weirdo” and doesn’t believe her. When Hannah says that she makes people like Tamsin uncomfortable, Tamsin’s only answer is: “So sue me. I don’t like crying.” Bo then tries to take Hannah by force but Tamsin stops her saying that if she tries to move Hannah without her agreeing to it she will dissolve into tears and die. Bo backs off but then Whitman begins to try to get into the building and tries to make Hannah move by using her powers on her, but when Hannah says that she’s used to people trying to con her, Bo stops and is ashamed of herself. Bo then tells Hannah about the school that Balzac wants to take her to and when Hannah hears there will be boys there she happily, at least for her, goes with Bo and Tamsin after Bo takes a knife from the room with her.

Bo, Tamsin and Hannah rush outside and are confronted by the Sheriff (John Tench) who stops them with Whitman nearby. The Sheriff asks Whitman if Hannah is his and he states that he is at which point the Sheriff tells Bo that she has to settle things with Whitman “Dark Rules style.” Trick and Stella watch as the game displays a skull and a set of crossbones and Stella tells Trick that she has never seen a game threaten someone’s life. In Brazenwood, Bo faces off against Whitman at ten paces, Whitman with a gun in hand and Bo armed with the knife she took from the pharmacy. When Bo draws the knife, Whitman duplicates himself to the surprise of everyone. Tamsin tries to go to Bo’s aid, but the Sheriff stops her from doing so. Meanwhile, Trick has both controls of the game in his hands as Stella tells him: “Okay Trick. Concentrate. Empty your mind of all thought. Clear your head. Focus. Trust your instincts. Listen to your gut.” Trick stops Stella and tells her: “Stella. I mean this with all due respect. But shut the hell up.” Then Trick pulls both handles and the games continues. Back in Brazenwood, Bo waits for the draw but hears the sound of someone walking up to her from behind. She smiles and says to herself: “Time to put that cricket down for good.” As the two Whitmans draw, Bo spins around and throws her knife which embeds itself in the real Whitman who had moved behind Bo. As he falls to the ground and dies, the two false images of himself vanish and Bo wins the fight. As the game shows that the correct choice was made, Trick and Stella embrace before they share a kiss. As they do so, their hands brush against the game and it sparks from the touch. In Brazenwood, Tamsin runs over to Bo and the two share an embrace and kiss as well. After the kiss ends, the two look at each other in confusion as Hannah runs over and asks if they will see the Gatekeeper on the way out as she thinks he’s cute. Bo comments that: “You really are a weirdo. Sweet, but a weirdo.” as she, Tamsin and Hannah leave Brazenwood.

The next scene shows Lauren at home sleeping off being drunk as someone knocks at her door. She wakes up in a bad mood and calls out as she opens the door: “Well it’s about damn time” expecting Bo to be there. Instead a man stands there who Lauren recognizes as Doctor Isaac Taft (Shawn Doyle). He agrees that it is time that they met and enters Lauren’s home. The two talk for a while about various scientific papers and then he gives her the award she won saying that the entire event was a bore and she was better off not being there. He then offers to take Lauren out for a drink and after thinking about it for a moment, Lauren agrees to go out with him. As they leave, Lauren tells him the joke she told Bo, who didn’t laugh, and he does.

Trick is worried as he cannot get it touch with Bo at all and the game has done nothing for a long time which worries him more. Stella tells Trick to have patience as Balzac rushes in looking for Bo and explaining that he woke from the effects of the dart and he couldn’t get into Brazenwood, that he thinks Whitman was going to kill Bo, and it is all his fault. Trick demands to know what Bo is doing in Brazenwood, but Balzac stops speaking and approaches the game. As he does so, two images are shown, one of happiness and the other of unhappiness. Bo then rushes into the room with Hannah and Tamsin close behind her. When Bo sees Balzac she pauses in surprise before Stella tells Bo that she is just in time. Hannah puts some of her tears into a glass for Bo and then she pours them into the chamber of the game. Stella tells Bo that: “Hannah’s tears are both a source of happiness and unhappiness and with that I believe we have reached the end of the game.” When Bo asks what happens next, Stella’s answer is: “Something most likely unexpected.” The game makes some odd noises and then a curled horn rises from the game and a circus tune is played before confetti is ejected from the game before it turns itself off completely. After this, Balzac tells Bo: “Isabeau. On this day in this place you are officially invited to The Dawning. May your destiny be of your own choosing.” Balzac and Hannah then leave together as Bo comments: “So Balzac was my invitation all along.” Stella congratulates Bo on passing and Bo thanks her before rushing out of the room in a panic as she remembers about Lauren. Tamsin looks at both Stella and Trick with some discomfort before following Bo to Lauren’s place.

After the final commercial, Bo rushes into Lauren’s place with Tamsin close behind discovering that Lauren is not there. Bo gives herself the award for “Worst girlfriend ever” as Tamsin makes light of things telling Bo that Lauren will forgive her. Tamsin pours herself a glass of champagne and then hands Bo the bottle offering a toast to her Dawning adding: “May you not die.” Bo takes the bottle telling Tamsin that she won’t die. When Tamsin asks if Bo is sure about that, Bo admits that she isn’t. Tamsin tells Bo that if she gambled, her money would be on Bo as they drink to the toast. Bo then asks Tamsin why she didn’t leave as she didn’t make the deal with Balzac. Tamsin’s answer is: “You think I would ever hear the end of it if one little hair on everyone’s favourite Succulette’s head was harmed? So I decided to stick around like it or not.” Bo tells Tamsin that she she was wrong about her and that she is “one of the good ones.” Tamsin scoffs as she walks away telling Bo that “You really do suck at reading people. So I… Better get going.” as Bo watches her leave.

The last scene of the episode has Tamsin walking to her truck and seeing a single tarot card on the ground next to it face down. She picks it up and turns it over to find it is The Wanderer. Tamsin is frightened by this and calls out “No. No. Please tell me that she’s not the one.” There is the sound of thunder and then massive numbers of tarot cards, all of them being The Wanderer, fall from the skies and pile around Tamsin as she weeps.

 

Fade to black…

 

It was an interesting episode as a whole, and there were moments that I really did like what was going on. The problem for me, mainly, was that they completely dropped what happened between Kenzi and Bo at the end of the last episode and brushed over it. Using the excuse that Kenzi is human and she would be distracting is baloney. Lauren appeared. She even talked to Bo and was making plans to go out with her. So how exactly does that work? If Kenzi wasn’t to be there for that excuse, then Lauren shouldn’t have been either. Period.

I’ll rant about that more I am sure. Setting that aside, it was neat to see Bo actually thinking instead of just fighting her way through the problems. She’s smart, she can work things out and that hasn’t happened much of late. It’s good to see that again. Coupled with that, to see Tamsin actually trying to be helpful and making a positive contribution in some small way was a good change for her. She still has attitude, I know that will never change, but really, that improved her as a character and in the story as a whole.

It also was a change to see parts of the Fae world that we haven’t before and how things are connected together. It also proves that there are some things that neither the Ash nor the Morrigan have control over and that we haven’t seen a lot of. It’s not a perfect world and this episode proves that.

I thought the game was really well designed. The end result of the game was unexpected and to be honest felt a little childish to be honest. But the creativity in it was amazing to look at. The scenes with Trick and Stella were the highlight here and the interplay, especially at the points where Trick had to make a choice were both stressful and heartwarming at the same time.

I do have to wonder about the new Lauren love interest. That really makes no sense. If that’s connected to Tamsin becoming a lover of Bo I think I will be unhappy about it all. At some point the writers need to allow Bo, Lauren and Dyson to settle their differences and be a threesome os something… It has to happen sometime…

On to the characters in the episode…

Bo… Buffy Bo this week. Actually not in a bad way really for the most part and I liked how what she did was connected to the game that Trick had to play. It was good to see her thinking rather than acting or reacting which seems to be a rare thing for her a lot of the time now in the series…

Dyson… MIA. Shame really, but so be it.

Kenzi… MIA. Not cool. Not at all after the previous episode’s cliffhanger ending. What were they thinking?

Trick. A wonderful performance, and really it’s nice to see him actually express love for Stella this time.

Hale. MIA. I think we need a search for him. Like now.

Lauren. Hyper. Really super hyper and then wanders off with a guy. This doesn’t bode well.

Tamsin: Was interesting to see her actually working with Bo instead of against her, but that attitude has to go. And the cliffhanger at the end? This will not be good at all.

Stella Nashira. She looks better in an evening dress than what she has been wearing in the series so far. I hope she remains a long time because she’s a good match for Trick.

Doctor Isaac Felt. One ten second scene an opinion cannot be made. But I didn’t think much of him personality wise, as over the top he was. And if Lauren goes for him there is something seriously wrong.

Balzac. Hyper. Hyper, hyper, hyper. Why was everyone in this episode hyper?

Hannah. I won’t say cry me a river… Too much. But you know, she was really one of the more interesting characters this week and that’s saying something. And hyper.

Fang. Stereotype anyone? Just a little? And hyper.

The rest of the characters were for atmosphere really and they fit their roles well I thought. I still don’t quite understand why everything went western suddenly, but I suppose there was a good reason for that in the writer’s mind. I just can’t figure it out myself. I do find myself wondering about what other setting could have worked though…

 

My Review of Fae-ge Against The Machine

Keeping my interest – 4 Pitchforks

Portrayal of a Succubus – 1 Pitchforks

Overall look and feel – 4 Pitchforks

Storyline – 5 Pitchforks

Main Characters – 3 Pitchforks

Mythos – 4 Pitchforks

Overall Rating – 3.5 Pitchforks out of 5

 

This was I think one of the better episodes as a whole for the season, but there were some parts of it that nagged at me. The main part of that being leaving things from the previous episode unresolved in this one. Kenzi missing didn’t help at all either. Still, putting that aside the idea of the game effecting what happens in Bo’s life was a neat thing and as the story progressed the questions of how that all fit together were nicely played to the end. I didn’t quite get the need for the Western slant on the episode and I am wondering if everything that happened in this episode actually did. What I mean by that is how many of the characters seemed… frantic? different? Something odd was going on and I am not quite sure about it all in the end.

Very little of Bo being a Succubus in this episode and I do not count her using her “glow” on others as being very Succubus-like. I did like that Buffy Bo didn’t happen much, that she had to think and consider what she was doing and why as well. There wasn’t a real chance for a Succubus to appear and I’m starting to miss that. A lot.

The locales used in this episode were really interesting visually. Brazenwood very much so and the game especially so. It must have taken a lot to create that device and make it do what it did. Possibly the greatest visual effect in the series as a whole and that’s saying something. I would love to know where it came from both in the series universe and in the real world. That took a lot of talent to create.

As a means to get to the climax of The Dawning, the episode worked really well. It also left more questions than answers, but that’s to be expected by now in Lost Girl. The tie between the game and the quest that Bo was placed on were perfectly linked and that made the episode as a whole much stronger and interesting. I wish that more episodes would manage this.

Bo progressed as a character, Trick and Stella seem to be an item, Lauren has a new person in her life, and Tamsin is in a situation where I can see nothing but real problems coming quickly. The only problem with all of this is that I don’t expect any of these threads to be closed in a good way by the end of the season, if at all. That’s getting to be a habit, when they open a story and then abandon it for the flavour of the week. There has to be a way to tighten up the storytelling and bring the threads together somehow.

I was quite interested in the two hew Fae this week, though I would not want to see a Squonk turn into a puddle of tears. I would like to have known what kind of Fae Whitman was, but we never find that out. There was a lot of mythos added to the series, including the game, and that’s good because it keeps interest in what’s going on each week. With the series getting a fourth season I hope that they can improve on that with time…

 

Next Week: The Ceremony

Reality and fantasy converge as Bo confronts her ultimate challenge – unaware that it may not be just her life she is risking. Meanwhile, her friends consider the unthinkable. Trick dreads the meaning of something he sees.

 

So, rather than making the point of this season be at the end of it, it seems like they are going to finish the Dawning arc next episode and then rush off into something else to close the season. Wasn’t the point of this season the Dawning and Bo trying to have a real relationship? The former will happen, the latter just seems like it won’t.

And why is it that Trick can’t be happy for once? I know all about the curse that comes with his blood, but really? I am expecting, and I don’t like this much, that Trick and Stella’s relationship with end with her passing away or something else going wrong and that would be a shame after this episode.

I want a resolution to the Kenzi arc too please? Is she going to be Fae? What’s going to happen to her? Something is better than pushing that off to the side again and again. So, please, give an answer one way or the other?

I can’t quite figure out what the balance of the season will be if the main arc ends next week. Of course the summary might be completely wrong or I’m reading it wrong…

I hope so.

 

Tera

 

Mar 14 2013

Succubi Image of the Week 271

I found, for this week’s Succubus, an image that is, at least to me, an interesting interpretation of one. While she’s a different colour, she is very sexual, seductive and powerful in her own right…

And that’s important isn’t it?

Succubus by Felsus

Succubus by Felsus

This work is called Succubus and is by an artist calling themselves Felsus on Pixiv. You can find the page where I found this work here and this artist’s page can be found here where a small number of their works are shown.

I really like this more than I can possibly say… Lovely textures in her hair, the tattoos on her body are placed just so to make her more desirable, her form is more than Succubus enough to be a Succubus too. I like the wings, and I don’t say that very often, so that’s even more special.

I do wonder if she isn’t a warrior of some kind, that red spiky thing on her shoulder would be a little odd for a “normal” Succubus, but here that contrast works really well. Blue and red just looks right on her and then the white tattoos just adds to her look and that’s just perfect…

I would, if I could wish for a piece of art, to see her a bit less shaded and, of course, I would love to see what kind of tail she might have as well… Being that her horns are red, I think that a red tail with those horns and her blue body would really be amazing…

 

Tera

Mar 13 2013

Not sweet enough for a Succubus Costume…

I wonder sometimes what costume designers think of when they hear the word sweet. I’m not sure that their definition of that word is the same as mine…

Actually, I’m very sure when I see things like this.

Sweet Devil Costume

This is called the Sweet Devil Costume, why I have no idea, but it is…

The basic costume consists of a sequin-bodice dress with tulle, lace and organza “flame” skirt.

Everything, and I mean, everything, else in this image is extra on top of the minimal costume.

That means you would have to purchase separately the devil horns, the devil wings, the earrings, the choker, the glove lets, the leggings, the shoes and the pitchfork the model is holding.

The costume itself sells for $89 US, but adding the extras pushes the final cost to a whopping $240 US…

And I can’t see for the life of me why anyone would think of paying that much money for this.

It doesn’t even come with a tail for goodness sakes…

I really don’t care for this at all. Setting aside the price of this, the look doesn’t thrill me, there are much better looking costumes to be found as well.

I’ll give this one pitchfork out of five.

I wouldn’t buy it.

 

Tera

Mar 12 2013

Desires 68

When you look at yourself, do you see yourself, what others see, or something… more?

________________

Desires – Beginnings

By BStyles and Tera S

Part Four

 

She had been wrapped up her thoughts after the song and didn’t sense his approach. She bad been looking at the tabletop and trailing a single finger through some grains of sugar that had spilled from the sugar bowl as she slipped into the booth. She had pushed the grains around until a little pair of horns and a tail had been created there. She had been staring and thinking about something when he spoke and she started. Her hand brushed through the grains scattering them across the tabletop in random patterns.

She looked up at him in a bit of shock and then took a breath. She smiled softly and said, “What the soul contains, other things cannot change… Love is one of those… It’s so very precious isn’t it?”

She looked away and said, “Your music was wonderful tonight… Far better than mine. I apologise for intruding on your moment… I’ll leave if you want me to.. This is your place after all… I am likely not that welcome here…”

She moved to get up and leave and then saw the tea in his hands. She paused and then asked, “Have you time for someone like me? I find that difficult to believe. So few do unless they want something of me or my kind…”

Then she was quiet for a moment as he remained there waiting for her decision. She took a breath and then sat back down. She raised a hand and flicked her hair over her shoulders. In a small voice she said, “I’d like some company… If you have the time to share….”

_______________

And in the sharing, comes… what?

Tera

Mar 11 2013

Storm Clouds 185 – An ongoing Succubi Story

This is the continuing story of the Succubi called Storm Clouds…

If you want to read previous chapters, please click here…

Some rewriting and adding of things this week from Chapter 26 to 28… Few things that I didn’t like and others I thought were good things to add… We’ll see what happens…

_______________________

Storm Clouds 185

Chapter 26

By TeraS

 

 

Tom pushed Nina to the side of the elevator and out of sight of the guards, motioning for her to hold the elevator doors open. He stood opposite to her and tapped his gun against the elevator’s railing: “Four guards, one at the desk, three standing. Lousy odds. Got any ideas?”

Nina pressed the door button with her right hand and thought a moment, “Can’t kill them … can we, Tom?”

The look he gave her was one of disbelief, “You actually think I would do that?”

“No. You wouldn’t … but I would … if I had to.”

“Why?”

She took a quick look at the guards, “Well, two of them are the Dark’s pawns. As far as I’m concerned, killing them would be a mercy. The other two are innocent …”

“Nina, you can’t just kill for no reason. That’s …”

“It does, Tom. Regularly. It had Patricia killed for no reason.”

Tom took a long hard look at Nina, “You are not It; neither am I.”

Nina nodded in approval, “When we forget that, it wins.”

“So, what’s the plan?”

Nina’s tail swished slightly, “How about I give them something they’ll never forget?”

“Why does that tone bother me?”

Nina’s smile was a thin one: “Can I hurt them, just a little?”

“Define ‘hurt.’”

Nina’s answer came in a shriek from the guards as they fell to their knees and then onto their sides clutching between their legs … while Nina looked at Tom with a smile he knew was much less innocent than it appeared to be.

“Scratch that. I don’t want to know.”

“Really?”

Tom looked towards the guards: “Really.”

“You’re no fun.”

“I’ll bet you’re a ton of fun at parties, too.”

Nina’s innocent smile became a smirk, “You are coming to my next one, Tom. Promise.”

“Great. Can hardly wait. Come on, time’s ticking.”

Nina’s tail and horns vanished into thin air, “More ways than one, Tom. Go.”

The two left the elevator and entered the lobby, making for the exit. Nina’s heels clicked loudly on the floor as she ran slightly ahead of him.

“Why all the rush to get out of here, Nina?”

“We screwed with two of the Dark’s toys. That means we’re officially on It’s shit list. And knowing it, that means any kind of trap that It’s got around here is coming our way.”

Tom looked around, seeing only the guards on the floor, while the rest of the lobby was empty. “Something’s wrong. This place should have all kinds of people around. It’s never this empty.”

Nina didn’t look back, “Feels like a setup doesn’t it? Probably is.”

“Great; just great.”

Nina kept her focus on the doors ahead of them, “Move your ass, Tom. Think later …”

They were about halfway to the exit when it happened. It wasn’t just that the lights went out, it was as if the entire world was pulled out from under them and was replaced by complete and total blackness. Nina turned and grabbed Tom by the arm as he stumbled and the two skidded to a stop. “Shit! Tom, get behind me, cover my tail.”

Tom moved behind Nina and had the weirdest feeling when her tail brushed against his back. He couldn’t understand it, but … somehow, he felt like he had felt something like it before.

“What’s going on?”

Nina was silent, looking around them before she answered, “Seems like Its trap was designed to scare the crap out of people and hold them in place until some of Its minions could deal with the problem.”

“Wild assumption?”

“Experience. There are stories about something like this happening in the past. Looks are deceiving sometimes and in this case I think they are. If It was here right now, we’d be in a world of hurt.

Tom lowered his gun slightly, “Which means what?”

“Which means the exit is likely still in front of us, but we can’t see the floor or anything else.”

“But the floor is there.”

“Has to be, right? Otherwise how are we still standing here?”

Tom nodded at that logic, “Okay, Professor Nina: what now?”

Nina’s tail wrapped itself around Tom’s waist, “Now I keep moving and you watch behind us. Whatever happens, don’t let anything get near my tail.”

Tom remembered what Nina had said about their tails and nodded, “Count on it. Get us the hell out of here.”

They moved slowly—much too slowly for Tom’s liking—but this was Nina’s world, not his. Nothing happened for what seemed like hours until Tom thought he saw something move in front of him and shot at it, the gunshot loud in the silence around them.

“Tom?”

“Something came close. Couldn’t tell what.”

“And that’s definitely a bad thing.”

“No kidding?”

“Sarcasm just isn’t your style, Tom. Right. Moving faster. Keep up.”

“Never fast enough for me.”

They moved on, nothing else happening until Nina bumped into something with a thud and complained about it, “Damn it. Okay, found the wall. Door’s got to be here somewhere …”

That didn’t sit well with him, but he didn’t say anything, instead just following her movements, until Nina moved suddenly and a blast of light pushed at the darkness around them, before being swallowed up by it.

“This way out. Come on, Tom, move your …”

Tom’s attention was diverted to the light and the exit so he didn’t see part of the darkness… solidify… and then move in a rush towards him.

Whatever it was struck Tom in the chest and shoved him into Nina, knocking the wind out of them both. The next thing Tom knew, both he and Nina tumbled onto the pavement outside. He scrambled to his feet and moved to help her.

She was in trouble. Tom had gotten clear, but she was halfway inside the building, with something pulling at her legs and drawing her back inside, while her tail swatted at the blackness around her.

It looked like tar… or oil … or … it was hard to describe something that was the deepest black oozing out of the building. But one thing was very clear to Tom. Whatever it was had Nina … Camilla … both of them.

Nina clawed at the concrete and yelled at him, “Tom! Get the hell out of here!”

He closed the distance between them and shook his head slightly, “Sorry, Nina. Can’t do that. Can’t leave my partner.”

The look in her eyes was one that Tom had never expected: fear. “This time, you have to! This is something you can’t deal with! Get the hell out of here!”

Tom, to his credit, didn’t. Instead he took hold of Nina with one hand and started shooting into the building at the same time.

“No! Not losing both of you!”

Whether it was Tom’s bullets, Tom’s anger, or something else, he would never be able to figure out …

… but whatever it was just let go of Nina, rushed back inside the building and then slammed the door closed.

The two looked at each other …

“Persistent bastard, eh?”

“Obviously not as persistent as you.”

… and then the sound of metal shrieking made them look up as they both scrambled to their feet.

“Shit!”

“Shut up and close your eyes!”

Anyone watching would have seen a window washing platform fall onto two people that had been unfortunate enough to stumble on their way out of the building and get in the way.

What they wouldn’t have seen was a purple puff of smoke and the smell of lemons in the air as Nina and Tom bampfed away …

 

Storm Clouds

Chapter 27

By TeraS

 

 

Try.

Three simple little letters, but put them together and things get … complicated.

For Jane, it was truly complicated. Not that what Tera placed in front of her wasn’t possible; she had been in the minds of others before. The problem was in what would happen after. Would John hate her? Would he even remember her? Would he remember that she … liked him?

She found, to her surprise, that it mattered to her. Pushing a lock of John’s hair back to where it should be, she tried to rationalize her thoughts about him. Why did she find herself caring about him? What was it that made her do so? Why did she care about anyone? She never had before, never became close to anyone, really … except Patricia. That brought a sigh from her that made Tera arch an eyebrow … but say nothing.

Jane always put up a tough front when dealing with other beings, tried to be the sister who others didn’t mess with or cross. It wasn’t because she needed to be that way, not really. She did so because she needed to protect Patricia, because she was the older of the two of them … by ten minutes, but still she was.

When Patricia revealed to her what Tera had offered, Jane didn’t believe her. She told her twin that she was being told a fairy tale, a lie, that all of it couldn’t possibly be real. The most troubling thing was the calm, knowing smile that her sister had throughout their argument. When Patricia left and never answered any of her messages, Jane had no choice: she went through all of the things that were left behind and came upon a simple business card, then went to see Tera and demand that she give her sister back to her.

She had met Tera in that little brownstone. She still remembered the look the Receptionist had given her. It stayed with her because it was something she had never seen from anyone: pity. She thought that barging into Tera’s office would throw her off balance and Jane would have the upper hand. Now she knew better, but then … oh, how arrogant she was. She pushed the door open and only managed to take one step inside the door when she was brought up short.

That wasn’t because of Tera; she barely noticed her. It was her sister. She stood there in the middle of the room, looking like a mirror to Jane as she always did … except she didn’t. Jane stood frozen to the spot as Patricia walked to her, her white, heart-tipped tail moving behind her, a pair of white horns in her hair and … angel wings … She had angel wings, too …

“Hi, Sis.”

Jane’s mouth was open, but nothing came out. She couldn’t believe that what her sister had told her was real, that angels, devils, and all of the myths of their childhood were not myths; they were real.

As cold as Jane was, Patricia wasn’t. Whether that was because she was the little sis, or it was just the way she was …

… Jane missed her so much and regretted so much more.

Her sister took a finger and pushed Jane’s mouth closed again before hugging her tightly, her wings wrapping around them both, and her tail … it was wrong that it wrapped around her right leg, and yet there was something … right … about it all …

… and Jane just cried more than she had ever in her life before.

“Shhh … It’s okay … I’m here, silly.”

“You left me!”

“I asked you to come with me. You didn’t believe me.”

“I … I can’t believe in fairy tales, Sis. I have to be strong for you, to protect you, to …”

… Jane found herself looking into Patricia’s eyes and wondering how they became so blue …

“You don’t have to believe in fairy tales. You have to believe in these tails …”

And Jane felt her sister’s tail give her thigh a soft squeeze.

Then, for the first time, she heard Tera’s voice, “You chose not to join your sister, Jane. Like her, you have free will, and you made your choice.”

When she looked at Tera, finally, she wanted to lash out at her for taking Pamela away, to force her to reverse everything and let her take her sister where she belonged: home, with her. Not here, not … “I want my sister back! You did this! You …”

“I did nothing except open her eyes to what could be. She accepted the impossible … You, it seems, haven’t.”

Jane pulled away from her sister, but refused to let go of her hand as she moved towards Tera: “I demand that …”

“What gives you the right to demand anything?”

“She’s my sister.”

“And she decided that she wanted this, freely.”

“I …”

Patricia squeezed her twin’s hand, twice—which, in their childhood code, meant ‘shut up, stupid’—before she spoke: “Tera … she does not understand, that’s true. But she is a good soul, and she means well.”

“Meaning is not doing, Daughter, and …”

Jane couldn’t help herself, “You are not our mother! Our mother …”

The next words from Tera still hurt as she remembered them: “… died when you were born. You never had a real mother, neither of you … and no one will ever be able to replace her … I know … better than you can imagine.”

There was hurt in those few words, more hurt than Jane had within her, and she gripped her sister’s hand tighter than she ever had in her life.

“Ow! Sis! Chill out!”

Jane reflexively let go of Patricia, but then grabbed for her hand again with both of her own: “Sorry, Sis, really.” She then walked to Tera, her sister beside her.

Tera rested in an old high-back chair, watching the two sisters approach: “Where do we all go from here, then, Jane?”

Jane closed her eyes, “I think … I … I apologize.”

Tera placed her hands in her lap, tilted her head to the right, “For what … exactly?”

Jane was going to say “for being impolite” and nothing more, but decided that wasn’t the truth; “I’m sorry for not listening to Patricia. I should have put my fear aside and at least seen what she was talking about.”

“But it is, as you said, impossible.”

“Maybe I’ve forgotten how to believe in the impossible.”

Tera smiled. A smile that Jane would always remember, “We don’t do the impossible. We make dreams.”

Jane looked at her sister, “Then, I’d like my dream to be true.”

“What’s that Sis?”

Tera interrupted, “It won’t be easy. You understand that?”

Jane’s answer was simple in that moment, but now she realized that it meant so much more … “Wherever it is, we’ll be together …”

After that memory washed over her, Jane impulsively cupped John’s cheeks in her hands and then kissed him as she dove back into his memories once more, this time alone.

The room was full of smoke and she heard the ceiling being to crack and split. Then John’s arms around her and the world fell around them both. Before, how it really happened, Patricia never had the chance to do anything to help him.

But Jane could. From here on, things would be different.

Jane looked into his eyes underneath the pile of rubble. She swallowed the lump in her throat and managed a weak, “Hi.”

He groaned, the wreckage from the building on top of him, “What are you doing here, lady?”

A cough, a shaky one: “Looking for Mister Right. Are you he?”

 

Storm Clouds

Chapter 28

By TeraS

 

 

Back at the nondescript brownstone at 69 69th Street, an odd event occurred, one that, even if Camilla had known about it at the time—wouldn’t have surprised her, to be honest. An old, beaten-up pickup truck rumbled up the street and parked directly in front of the path leading to the front door before Billy unfolded himself from the cab and stood there, looking at the place. He had actually dressed up—at least for him, he did. After all, putting on a new shirt and a clean pair of pants, to him, was dressing up.

He hesitated there for a while, thinking things over and looking at the place. It was much too classy for someone like him to be seen there. But he had been asked a favor. The thing about Billy was that he acted gruff and tough on the outside, but, inside, there was still the young kid that worried about every little thing he did and if his father would approve of it.

He was still standing there when he heard a woman’s voice, “Can I help you?” Turning, he saw that the question was asked by a woman with short, platinum blonde hair, dressed really nice, a quizzical look in her eyes, standing on the sidewalk and carrying a tray of coffee and what looked to be donuts.

“Um … dunno, Ma’am. I was looking for Camilla.”

“I believe she’s out of the office at the moment, would you …” As she said this, she struggled with what she was carrying and, just before she dropped everything on the ground below, Billy had moved around his truck and caught everything … including her.

Billy wanted to let go of her… and he really should have … but she looked at him and he couldn’t look away from her. She was really pretty and … stuff.

She didn’t say anything for the longest time either, just looking at him, and he at her lips, and … gosh she had a cute look when she was startled, and he just didn’t want to let go of her. Finally he did, very hesitantly, and then she shook her head as if to clear it or something, Billy honestly wasn’t sure.

“Thank you. The office would be madder than a swarm of bees if they didn’t have their coffee and snack.”

Billy managed an embarrassed smile, “Yeah, I get that a lot where I work. They don’t let me get the coffee anymore … say that it’s safer. Don’t blame them for that.” A bit of a sad look passed over her and Billy shook his head, “Not mad about it, Ma’am. Makes sense as I’m all thumbs, anyway.”

She considered that, “I think you sell yourself short. You did pretty good in helping me.”

“Ya were in trouble Ma’am. Wasn’t thinking about other stuff. Just helping ya.”

Billy had the weirdest thought as if she was testing him or checking him out or something. But that was dumb: she was classy and smart; he wasn’t, and he really did know that inside of himself.

“Well, you did help …” She paused, of course, because he hadn’t said his name.

“Billy, Ma’am.”

She smiled—a real smile, too, not one of those fake ones that the people back at the waterfront gave him—and he didn’t know what to make of it.

“Billy. Nice name; I like it.”

Billy knew he was blushing now, he just had to be, what with the heat on his cheeks and the butterflies in his stomach. “Um … thank you, Ma’am.”

“You know, if you want, you’re welcome to come inside and wait for Camilla, if you want to, that is. There’s lots of space in reception and I’m sure it won’t be a problem.”

Billy looked away, “Not really meant to be in a place like that, Ma’am. Not my place and, besides, I’ll stick out like a sort thumb.”

She laughed—actually, she giggled—and, for a moment, Billy was hurt inside. He thought she was laughing at him, that he fell for her game and now was the butt of the joke like he always was. He started for the pickup, aiming to get out of there before anything worse happened, but found she had put her things in the box of the truck and taken hold of his right hand with one of her own.

“Not laughing at you, silly. Please look at me?”

Of course he couldn’t pull away from her, that wouldn’t be good manners … and she did say please, after all.

When he did, she looked at him and only him, “I’m sorry if I embarrassed you. I didn’t mean to, and I am really and truly sorry if I did.” Billy found himself looking at her small, dainty hand resting on top of his huge, meaty one and wondered why he didn’t want her to let go of it.

“Um. It’s ‘kay, Ma’am. No hard feelings or anything.”

“Tell you what. Why don’t you come inside with me? I’ll pop my stuff off inside with the Receptionist and we can wait for Camilla to come back. I know that no one will mind you waiting inside.”

Billy thought about this, sort of—it was kind of hard to think, considering that she was still holding his hand and worrying about him. “I … I don’t want to be trouble, Ma’am.”

“Donna.”

“Pardon?”

She smiled and patted his hand once, “Donna. My name is Donna, and I really won’t mind if you use my name instead of calling me ‘Ma’am’ all the time.”

“Wouldn’t be proper to do that, Ma’am.”

She shook her head, “It’s only improper if you aren’t given permission to do so. And I have, so …” She looked at him, and looked, and looked more earnestly still until Billy finally gave in.

“’Kay, Ma …” Billy managed to smile, if sheepishly, “… Donna.”

“Thank you. If you want to carry the coffee for me, I’ll take the donuts, and then we can find a place to sit and wait for Camilla. How’s that sound?”

Billy turned and handed her the donuts before picking up the tray of coffee, “Ya know, I might spill the coffee.”

“You won’t. I trust you.”

Billy was rather proud of himself as they entered the building, and he even managed to hold the door open for Donna and not drop the coffee, either. For the first time in a while, that little voice in the back of his head that kept telling him he wasn’t good enough didn’t say anything.

That one single thing would, eventually, change Billy’s life …

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