Oct 14 2011

A Review of Thaumatology 101 by Niall Teasdale

I haven’t reviewed many a novel or other story on the Tale that I gave five pitchforks to. There is a reason for that actually. To get the top rating from me, I want a story that keeps my interest, has not just a Succubus in it that likes sex and that’s all she is, and the rest of the story isn’t all about her “having fun” with others. In other words I want a real story with some meat in it that keeps me reading it, and reading it again and again. And if there will be more to the story to come? Oh that’s just better still.. I found such a story recently…

And today I’m going to share my thoughts about it…

Thaumatology 101 by Niall Teasdale

Thaumatology 101 by Niall Teasdale

The work is described as:

Ceridwyn Brent had a fairly easy life, kept safe from the supernatural dangers of the world around her by the enchantments her parents placed on her when she was a baby. Then her parents died in a car accident leaving their daughter a well-protected nervous wreck, afraid of travel and especially cars, and unwilling to leave the house.

Then she met Lily Carpenter, a half-succubus trying to get her life back on track and they helped each other back to something like a normal life. As normal as it gets when your house looks like the Munsters were the chief designers and your housekeeper is an enigmatic fairy.

It was Lily who persuaded Ceri to apply for the job as research assistant to Doctor Cheryl Tennant, lead researcher in quantum thaumatology at the London Metropolitan University. Doctor Tennant is locked in a battle with a better funded team at Cambridge to discover the fundamental particle of magic, the Null Thaumiton. Everyone knows the race has been heating up with both sides close to a result, but there was no way Ceri could have expected sabotage and murder to be involved in an academic contest. Soon Ceri and Lily are in the middle of an academic war, surrounded by wizards, werewolves, and demons, and in the meantime there’s still that elusive particle to uncover.

First and foremost, it should be said that this isn’t a work of erotica. That’s not to say that there aren’t some moments in it. There are some really well written scenes between Lily and Ceri that were exactly right in many ways…

But it’s not only that, Lily, while she is a half-succubus, is not a “sex doll” as many writers have Succubi be. That’s refreshing and, truly, a rare thing to see. What’s more fascinating is how she struggles against her nature, with and sometimes without the help of Ceri, and how her personality changes as the story progresses. It’s also interesting how Ceri’s view of her friend, and they are friends, in the story both threatens their relationship and, eventually, strengthens it. Now Lily doesn’t have horns or a tail, she is a half after all and so she looks completely human if of course being very beautiful.

As an aside, the book cover above shows Lily on the left and Ceri on the right. She knows what she is, and in knowing she also fights against her Succubus side. She’s been through hell in her past and finding Ceri, a woman that her powers don’t work on, gives her the strength to be more than what she was becoming before.

That brings us to the heroine of the story, Ceri. It’s important to me at least that characters that are the core of a story make you want to care about them. Now I cared about Lily when she first appeared and there were moments in the story were I did, actually, fear for her. Ceri on the other hand, I didn’t fear for. She is someone that seems to have their stuff together, save for some moments of indecision at the beginning of the story. As she grows in character as the story is told, she becomes not simply a “person that bad things happen to.”

That’s important because you can only threaten someone so many times before you, as a reader, expect her to get into a mess and then get herself out of it again. You don’t expect them to fail, and Ceri does fail now and again, but her friends help her to figure out her life and world and move on again in a positive direction.

I’ll get to the other characters that interested me in a moment as I want to comment on the universe in which they live. Their world, which is set in our current time frame, isn’t our world. Not by any stretch of the imagination. There was an event in the past that unleashed magic into the world and through that all sorts of mythical, supernatural and similar beings have appeared. There are Succubi of course, but also vampires, witches, zombies, and all kinds of other beings which, in this world, fit the setting really well. I found it easy to place myself into the worldview that the author has created. As I noted, it isn’t our world. There has been massive changes that have occurred there and the repercussions still vibrate to the time this story is set in,

Now, that alone is fascinating, but what is more so is that the world has a clear set of rules that all being that use magic have to abide by, and the author has laid out the system very clearly and makes it well worth understanding. I also liked that the understanding of those rules wasn’t an info dump but became a core part of the story. The point of the story, or the goal of what Ceri and Cheryl are trying to discover connects characters and events in a tight web. That web, if you pay attention and you should when reading this work, makes so much sense by the end of the story that you wonder how long the author spent thinking about the universe.

It must have been ages…

I also can see the care that has been invested in the supporting characters as well. Even the smallest appearance of one of them means something, and it’s important to pay attention to them because they do have a bearing on where the story goes and what happens to Ceri. It is fascinating to read of their past and present and watch as they are fit into the world that she lives in.

Possibly the most interesting to me are Twill, a Fairy that is almost completely a mystery. That’s a good thing as following her through the story and what she does to help, or confuse Ceri at times is amusing at times, but does make you consider what’s going on and remind you that you don’t know everything as the story moves on. Then comes Carter Fleming, a mystery is his own right, and he is one that I would love to know more about. There is something going on in his past and I’d love to know what that is. I also find the transformation of Cheryl Tennant through the story amazing in taking her from where she starts to where she ends up. Just an amazing series of characters that add so much to the story as a whole…

The author has indicated that this is the first book in a series. The next work, called Demon’s Moon will be released soon and a third book is also being fleshed out as well. I can hardly wait for the story to continue. Not just for Lily, who is just fascinating to me, but Ceri and all of the people that surround her… I am quite sure that they are all in for some… interesting times to come…

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

It’s fun, interesting, well written, has a Succubus that I want to care about in it and a heroine and world that are just so well fleshed out that I almost expect to see both Ceri and Lily walking down the street someday…

Well worth your time to read and I hope that you do! Much thanks to Niall for answering some of my questions on his site, please do visit it for lots of background on the characters and world they live in!

 

 

 

Tera

Oct 13 2011

Succubi Image of the Week 198

There are quite a lot of 3D images of Succubi appearing here and there on the internet. Some of them are interesting, some are lovely, and then there are the ones that are simply amazing…

 

Ready For Saturday Night by Kevin Radthorne

Ready For Saturday Night by Kevin Radthorne

 

I found this work on DeviantArt, it is called Ready For Saturday Night and is by the artist Kevin Radthorne. You can find the original page on DeviantArt with this work here and you can find Kevin’s artist page here as well. He also has a personal website with much more of his work here as well.

Kevin describes himself as a writer-artist, he has an extensive collection of images like this delicious Succubus here, and as well as series of fantasy books in a universe he calls The Tales of Tonogato, which are, I think, really interesting and for those that like their fantasy wrapped in the honour and belief systems of the orient, I recommend his series very highly. They are well worth your time.

I think that Kevin’s rendering of a Succubus is interesting in that while we don’t see horns or a tail, the underlying beauty and sexuality of the character he has created makes them if not necessary, then not missed too much in the work. Her hair is lovely, the details in it are remarkable, you can make out individual stands of hair which helps in the illusion that he is creating. Her skin tones, as well as the detail work in her clothing and wings are some of the best that I have seen in quite some time. I also think that the background and props surrounding her add to the overall effect of making her seem very three dimensional and real.

A beautiful Succubus and thank you again Kevin for sharing her with us all…

Please do visit Kevin’s sites to see more of his creations!

 

Tera

Oct 12 2011

Not quite a Delightful Succubus Costume…

Delightful to me means that whatever it is, it brings even the slightest amount of joy in it. Now a lot of Succubus or Devil Girl costumes don’t quite have that in them…

Not even if it is in their name…

Devilish Delightful CostumeThis is called the Devilish Delightful Costume. I’m sorry but I can’t see how it can be called that, but setting that aside for the moment…

This costume comes with a sequined strapless zip front dress with a lace-up back, a satin sequined cape, the red horns and a bow tie.

The fishnet pantyhose, and long gloves are not included in the costume package.

It sells for about $33 US on various sites including eBay…

It’s another example of buyer beware to be honest. The image shows more than you get and if you don’t read the information carefully you might expect to receive the gloves as they match the costume.

I really wish that they wouldn’t do that…

The cape I think really adds nothing to the overall look. It’s more of an after thought than anything else. The bow tie is the same regretfully, and I have to say that the horns look to be a little bit flimsy…

Horns should never be flimsy.

Oh, and no tail once again. I wonder if it will ever come to the attention of costume designers that in most cases you do need to add a tail to a Succubus costume for it to look right…

Well that an of course a bit more thought to the “sexy” in Succubi…

I’m going to give this two pitchforks out of five.

I kind of like the “Little Red Riding Hood” vibe of the costume. Might be something for handing out candies at the door, but that’s about it I think honestly…

 

Tera

Oct 11 2011

Temptations 133 – The End.

There isn’t any RP to share this week from Temptations as the RP has come to an end. Partly that is my fault… well actually mostly it is. See, my one fault is that I want to give 100% to whatever I am involved in. I try to do that. So very much so.

Tera, the Queen of the Succubi is, for the most part, me. Well minus horns and a tail of course…

I regret that real life has stopped me from RPing as much as I want to. I regret that some of the stories of Temptations fell by the wayside for my fault or for people leaving the RP for various reasons. That does not mean that I am upset with them or that I have ill feelings towards them.

Quite the contrary.

I want to thank each and every person that allowed me to RP with them. To create facets of the mythos of the Succubi in my universe that still echo to the current day. Without you none of this would have ever happened…

I wrote once that Temptations was not so much the tale of the Queen of the Succubi but that of those that encountered her. I have been honoured to share time with people that mean the world to me and always will…

Next week, I will be starting a new, shorter RP series that was a series of one on one RPing on the Collective that were the earliest beginnings of who Tera, the Succubi Queen would become…

See you then…

And thank you…

 

Tera

Oct 10 2011

Storm Clouds 141 – An ongoing Succubi Story

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

If you want to read previous chapters, please click the link in the Tale header at the top of the page marked Storm Clouds or click here...

Sorry all… Nothing added this week… Just nothing in me to write at the moment… We’ll see what the week brings with some hope… But my heart has blessed me with some of his time to edit things and I thank him for his gifts that he has given me…

_______________________

Storm Clouds 141

Chapter 21

By TeraS

The thing about the Dark was that it was too confident. It thought that it had all of the answers and that no one could oppose it.

That was almost true.

She could, and did . . . regularly.

It had become almost an obsession for her now. There were so few who would challenge the Dark when it appeared, and so it fell to her to do so. It wasn’t a chore or an imposition; it had to be done, and she had seen enough of the Dark and what it was capable of to know that the best thing to do was what she did: drive it mad with anger and make it stop thinking.

Losing the one portal did that. Then letting it stew in its anger had made it get involved intimately with mortals and their world. She wondered if, this time, it would actually learn something from the experience or not.

Making the portal vanish was child’s play for a being like her. If the Dark ever figured out just how powerful she was, it might actually pause to think twice about the plans it had against Tera and her kind.

Possibly.

The thought did make her smile as the portal showing the severed tail reappeared among all of the Dark’s other ones. She stood there for a time, tapping a single pink fingernail against the surface and trying to decide what would be the most unpleasant thing she might do.

She could destroy this portal—the thought had been there before—but she had her own plans, and, for those, this one portal needed to remain, at least for the moment, in spite of what it showed.

The tapping stopped as she placed that hand against the surface and whispered to the awful image that it showed, “It will not be long. Promise.”

And, unlike some beings, she kept her promises.

She turned away, coming to the decision that, for once, just this once, she was going to make the Dark know what it was to lose something valuable.

What followed was the sound of fingernails raking across portal after portal, each of which turned white against the darkness, throwing light into a place which despised it. She didn’t ruin every single one of them, but, when she was done, she had left the Dark but three portals.

She thought that she just might be able to hear the scream of anger from it from three universes away when it returned to see what she had done here, and that thought made her smile slightly.

She glanced once more at the portals that remained, satisfied that this would be a problem for it, that it would have to spend effort and time repairing the damage if it could, and that, thankfully, might give the others needed time to figure out what was happening and where.

As much as she wanted to, she couldn’t actually get involved in the battle or make choices for those involved. It was, after all, necessary that all beings make their own choices, no matter how wrong or ill-advised they might well be.

Still, she had one thing that the Dark didn’t have: trust. Trust in others, trust that they would make good choices, but, most of all, trust in that one person that saved her life so long ago and, in doing so, changed her own universe for the better.

She would always owe that person for that gift.

She passed into the ether, on her way to where she needed to be. If the Dark could get involved with mortals, she could as well … to a point. But first she needed to talk to someone who needed to understand that some paths were not worth following.

Following the path of one who owed the succubi—and Tera, in particular—her life … that was the most foolish thing that it had ever done.

And it would soon learn.

As for the Dark, possessing one of its pawns was distasteful. But there was little choice. That damnable creature had cost him his watch over the tail. The one thing that would, if its plans went to completion, cause the barriers to fall before it and thus have what it wanted most.

But having to deal with a corporal form? That was something that it did not enjoy in the slightest. Emotions, thoughts, images from this pawn were getting caught between its own thoughts and, as well, it knew that its own thoughts would be mixing the other way.

But the important thoughts, the ones that it needed for itself, those it kept under lock and key, or so the Dark would believe. The problem was, as it always was, that nothing is ever completely closed off when beings merge, even if only for a short time.

Fingerprints leave smudges, after all …

It took the Dark some time to return to where the tail was kept. The wards around the place made it impossible for someone to appear there without seeing the place first and entering at one specific spot. From the outside there were traps and obstacles that it knew would stop any magic user from getting close.

But this pawn was tuned to the place and the wards would fall before it. Even so,   the time … the time was taking far too long for the Dark’s liking.

And so time passed, the Dark fumed, and the universe turned …


Oct 09 2011

A review of Demon in Blue Jeans by Toni V. Sweeney

Some of the short stories about Succubi and Incubi have their own little quirks, stories, and characters that make them a lot of fun to read. They might be short, but that doesn’t matter when the story itself makes them special.

I came across a short story which has an Incubus in it that is, quite simply, the most odd Incubus character I have ever discovered in my readings ever…

Demon in Blue Jeans by Toni V. Sweeney

Demon in Blue Jeans by Toni V. Sweeney

The story is described as:

Kate wanted a dream man. What she got was an underachieving demon for a one-night stand. Problem is…she’s fallen for him, and he’s on his way back to Hell–mission accomplished!

Kate is, when we first meet her in the story, full of bravado with her friends, but underneath she’s hiding a secret that will come back to haunt her.

After seeing a movie, she flippantly makes a wish to the Devil to send her a man for a one-night stand, and to her surprise he appears at her door the next evening.

His name is Zel and he eventually admits to her that he is a third-rate Incubus that has been sent to her as a test. The pair stumble over quite a number of missteps by Zel, who is always checking a little device he has with him for what to do next. Eventually they make love and what happens next is at first heartbreaking, but not totally unexpected.

Not going to spoil the story, but needless to say, Kate is crushed when he vanishes and Zel’s being with her has consequences for them both.

Kate was interesting as a character although there are moments when I didn’t like her a lot. That happened at the beginning of the story, but that might have been the writer’s style of her words and actions than anything else.

Zel was, to be honest, just about the most insecure Incubus I have ever seen in a story. While that can be chalked up to his experience, it was somewhat unsettling when he first appeared in his actions, which were really over the top to be honest.

But despite the flaws in the beginning, one of the major ones for me being a point at which actions by Kate are written in brackets like this: (Nod, nod.) That took me out of the story for a moment and it took me about three pages to get back into it totally again. The rest of the story, the moments Zel and Kate are together and what they reveal to each other in the bedroom more than made up for that little distraction in the work.

I’ve said it many times and I’ll say it here as well, that the problem with very short stories is that they leave doors open too many times or are rushed into making things happen that you wish would extend over several pages.

The writer’s style, save that one moment of describing Kate’s movements, is clear and well done, although again, at the beginning of the story, it was odd reading the spoken words of Kate’s friends and wondering why every single sentence by them ended in an exclamation mark.

I have the feeling that it wouldn’t be that difficult to continue the story of Kate and Zel, there are ample open doors at the end of the story for that to happen. I also wonder if instead of ending the story where it does, that the author doubled the length of it and make the resolution of the story something more meaningful than can be explained in a couple of pages.

Still, as I said, there is open doors for more in the universe to be written and wish that the author would have done so, but considering that the story is from 2008, that never did happen…

Shame that…

I give this work four out of five pitchforks…

Give me about ten more pages and a little more Kate and Zel time in the aftermath and I’d give it a five…

 

Tera

Oct 08 2011

Eros the Succubus

This weeks’ YouTube is here mostly because it just made me smile to see a dancing Succubus… Even if she doesn’t quite look like a Succubus but that’s okay…

And if you can’t see it here on the Tale:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tuKYrxMKfDc

This is the work of someone calling themselves  on YouTube, they have quite a number of videos on their page, but this is the only Succubus one that I could find on it.

Eros is described as:

Eros is a succubus, which explains her particular taste in what she wears. Her shirt is actually torn a bit here and there. She loves hanging out in heavily forested areas. The busy city life is probably too much for her, but if she were to be in a small town, she would probably stay there.

She sounds interesting and looks really cute, but she needs a tail and some horns I think…

A dancing tail would have really been something to see…

Tera

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