I’ve often wondered if I can write something that’s a bit of a suspense/action-adventure sort of thing with a side order of erotica. This might not be all that I think it can be, but I’m going to take a try at this and see what mischief I can get some of the Realm into…
The names of the Succubi and Incubi have not been changed to protect the horny…
Sparkly Horn Horror
One of the places in the Realm that seems somewhat out-of-place is the Realm Hospital—or, as some refer to it, “The Nutcracker Suite.” The hospital itself is usually a quiet place, for there aren’t that many of the Realm that have need of the services there. Being who and what the inhabitants of the Realm are, they just don’t really have a need for the hospital in the first place.
At least that is what the young think. Those who have long memories, or who know their Realm history, are very aware of why the hospital exists.
It is set in a section of the Realm that is surrounded by a series of low hills, which seem like they both surround the hospital and protect it at the same time. Considering that the site was the original location of the first Realm Hospital, during and after some of the most violent moments in succubi history, the location, and how it seems like a bastion, is very apt.
Even though the hospital isn’t used much, Tera had seen to it that it had been rebuilt many times over the years, always keeping pace with the needs of this Realm and those beyond. Within the walls, there are enough magical, medical, and technical forms of help available to handle just about any problem. While it is true that those of the Realm never really need hospitalization, there are occasions when others visit the Realm and need some assistance. The staff is small, really more appropriate for a clinic, but all very dedicated to their craft.
And the one that runs the hospital? Her name is Florence—no relation and, if you ask, be prepared for her to give you an “exam” you’ll never forget. On one bright sunny day in the Realm, Florence, who is one of the blue-tailed Succubi, was busy giving one particular incubi a thorough examination …oral and otherwise … that had been going on for a few hours.
Blue-tails are very talented in oral … among other things.
She had just finished off her oral exam of Adam, an intern in his fourth decade of service in the hospital, and was just about to allow him to give her what she had referred to as a “breast exam” with the member she had just orally examined, when an alarm sounded interrupting them. Unashamedly, Florence stood up and crossed the floor of the nursing station they were using; in truth, it was the one which was just the right height for her to bend over and be comfortable when she needed to be probed in an anal sort of way. Adam pulled on his scrubs—which didn’t do anything to hide the bulge he sported from her examination—“What’s going on?”
Florence scanned the display as she pulled her own scrubs on: “Someone’s been portalled into the isolation ward. No details. Room one.”
The walk was a lonely one for the pair. The staff were off for the day as all of the patients had been released; there had been only three, but, considering that over the past six months there hadn’t been any, this was ‘busy’ for the hospital. One patient felt he had to try out some lube that was rated only for incubi, and he wasn’t. Another had an awful sunburn from laying out too long while having fun doing what she called research on the mating habits of the Realm—Florence idly had wondered about which world was her chosen venue for that video. The last was one of the succubi who was a hypochondriac, though Florence had quickly figured out that she was there because she was, in fact, a pink tail with a doctor fetish that needed to be scratched.
The succubi physician and the incubi intern passed through the doors that marked the isolation ward and found themselves looking into a room where a purple-tailed succubi was frantically humping a pillow she had taken from the bed in the room, moaning in pleasure, sweat pouring off her, and something sparkling on her skin.
Florence was taken aback by the scene: “Deb?”
Adam looked at her: “Someone you know?”
“Um, Deborah … old friend … really good old friend.”
Adam leered a bit … he was that kind of Incubi: “As in sharing … old friend?”
She shot daggers at him with her eyes: “No. She might be a purple tail, but she is more interested in history than running around and fucking her brains out. I have always respected her for that. She made me think about what I wanted to do. I owe her.”
Adam was looking back into the room: “So, this isn’t normal.”
“No. it isn’t.” Florence pushed the intercom button: “Deb? It’s Flora. Can you hear me?”
Deb responded by standing up and pressing her naked form against the glass, her breasts squeezing against it, her body shivering at the cold, while she continued to hump the pillow between her legs, her eyes rolling up, only the whites showing: “mmmm … Hiya, Flora … Cum on in. My pussy’s so fucking wet … If … if you eat me out, I’ll do the … the same for ya … mmm …” As those last words came out with a gasp, Deb slid down the glass and then disappeared out of sight.
Florence didn’t know what to say or do at that moment. This was totally out of character for her old friend. “Why is she in there?”
Adam was looking over a screen with vital signs on it: “Considering that her temperature is way up, she’s pumping out pheromones that could make a dragon hard for a year, I’m not surprised.” He looked at his superior: “Masks and gowns?”
She nodded: “Masks and gowns.”
They opened the door a short time later, as prepared as they thought they needed to be. Deborah had a fever or something. She wasn’t a threat, only oversexed. Still, they weren’t prepared for what happened next: before they could react, Deborah came running out of the room and shoved Florence aside, intent on getting to Adam.
Faster than Florence could recover from being shoved against the corner of the doorway and race to Adam’s aid, Deb had ripped Adam’s suit open, fished out his cock and was humping him madly. Adam, still hard from the earlier exam, wasn’t exactly resisting her. Pushing herself up, Florence tried to pull Deb off him, but, during the struggle to do so, Deb tore off her mask and kissed her … deeply. She felt Deb’s tongue as it began to press past her lips, seeking Florence’s own. Or at least she tried to, but then something in the air made Florence sneeze, and Deb recoiled in surprise before turning her attention back to the intern, completely forgetting about her old friend.
Adam tried to untangled himself from Deb, but her strength was surprising, and, as he fought to be free of her he groaned: “Get the hell out of here. Find out what’s going on! I’ll … I’ll …” The gasp he made as Deb’s tail entwined itself with his announced the edge of him losing control and just going along with what Deb wanted to do: “Oh, fuck! I’ll keep her busy! GO!”
Florence scrambled to her feet, ran out the main doors of the isolation ward, and then slammed her fist into the big red panic button beside the door. The alarms and lights went off in the next moment, the doors locking tight and sealing both Adam and Deb inside. In spite of that, Florence was sure that she could hear them screwing their brains out on the other side of the door. She ran down the empty hallways, cursing that the wards that were in the very fabric of the hospital were designed to prevent the creation of outbound portals, then, in the next moment thanking them for being there. Whatever was affecting Deb, and now likely Adam, was something that had to be kept out of the Realm no matter the cost.
Skidding around a corner, she came to her office door and barged inside. As the isolation ward was now sealed, the protocols, as she well knew, would start locking the outside doors first, then restrict communications with the rest of the Realm, so that the only place to do so was in her office.
She looked at her office, the walls covered in books, texts, scrolls. She had prided herself in knowing more about medicine than anyone else in the Realm. The old saying of pride coming before a fall echoed in her thoughts as she made for her desk. In the past, Florence had to rely on her small library of medical and magic books in order to determine what malady had befallen someone. Sometimes, this took ages and, over a lemonade with one of the Realm’s librarians—an amazingly smart and helpful yellow tail named Miriam to whom Tera had referred Florence, she would come up with a solution that solved one research problem, but gave her another instead.
Now she could find an answer in mere moments by speaking with her assistant: “John, we have a problem.”
A shimmering tube of light appeared a few feet away and the image of a bespectacled incubus with blue horns and tail came into view. He appeared to be slightly older than Florence, with an attitude to match. “A problem? You must be most specific. Specificity is a trait I welcome.”
An assistant with attitude … just what she needed. “Shut up, John. I haven’t got time to deal with your cheek right now. Access patient background records for Deborah; she’s in isolation. Do a complete scan—everything. There’s something desperately wrong with her. Adam’s in there, too. Scan him, as well.”
He seemed to freeze in place and then an arc of energy flowed over his body, revealing that he was not, in fact, one of the Incubi. He was a projection from one of the things that Miriam had called an artificial intelligence interface. John was not a real being per sé, but existed in a computer that had been installed in the hospital. He held all of the medical information that was contained in Florence’s own medical library, the hospital’s larger one, and, as well, all that which had been digitized from the Realm’s Library by the staff there. There were still, as well she knew, a few wings to be added to John’s knowledge, but her hope was that he would at least know what they were dealing with, if not the cure for it.
John interrupted her thoughts: “Florence, I have a theory.”
“Only a theory? Need some facts, John. Deb’s not normal by any means. She’ll fuck anything in sight and that’s getting worse by the moment.”
“Has anyone else come into contact with her?”
Florence thought, then replied: “She appeared in the isolation ward, portalled directly into it. Looked like she was coming home and was redirected.”
“So you have no idea if she has or has not?”
She shook her head, then stopped: “I have. Didn’t really have a choice. Adam was helping me restrain her. He’s with her at the moment. He pushed me out of the room before closing the door. No one else has. The rest of the staff aren’t here today.”
John looked … worried … something that Florence had never seen before: “I am locking down the hospital and informing the Queen. No one is to be allowed in or out of here.”
As the alarm began to sound in the distance, and Florence heard the doors to the outside Realm closing, she called out to him: “John, tell me what the hell is going on!”
“The most likely candidate is a disease that was last seen in the time just after your kind’s battle to be independent from Light and Dark. The medical term is ‘anima denigration’: ‘Soul Blackening;’ known colloquially as ‘Sparkly Horn Disease.’”
She frowned as she mulled over the words: “Never heard of it, John.”
“It was only seen once, as I noted. Do pay attention Florence, this is important.”
“Get on with it, egghead.”
John nodded: “Better. Keep your focus, Florence. The slang term was coined from the initial signs of infection, that being the affected succubi or incubi having a shimmering, sparkling dust appearing on their horns. The timeframe from this appearing to complications is timed in a matter of hours. The dust will be the same colour as the infected’s own horns. Over time physical and mental changes occur.”
Florence swallowed, her tail moving slowly behind her: “How long until it is infectious?”
John removed his glasses, folding them up and putting them into one hand: “Deborah appears to be infectious at this time. The obvious signs are her eyes: they are the same colour as her tail, which they were not before. Her need to, as you say, ‘fuck anything in sight’ is the other. That is how transmission of the disease occurs. Sexual activity shakes the dust loose, it falls upon the sexual partner.”
She remembered the kiss she shared with Deborah and the last thing she saw as the door closed behind her trapping Adam with her. Deb straddling Adam and screaming as they fucked. She could almost hear the moans from the two of them through the walls.
Reflexively she brushed her hand through her hair and felt something in between her fingers. Looking at them she could see, just barely, some fine grains of blue sand. “Fine; what’s the cure to this?”
John furrowed his brow: “I have no records of a cure. That data has not been imparted to my memory core.”
“Great … even better.” She knew she was going to regret the next thing she said: “I have to assume Adam in infected. I have to be as well.”
“The assumption about Adam is correct. His scans show evidence. Being in direct contact with Deborah will speed up the infection.”
Florence rubbed her chin: “What are my chances?”
“Scanning. Stand by.”
It was the longest three minutes of her life.
“Assuming you do not come into contact with either, you have approximately six hours before the need for intercourse overcomes your ability to think clearly. You will be infectious in two hours. One hour beyond that your physical changes will be complete, but you will still have your intelligence. Over the following three hours your mind will turn towards your most base instincts until that is all that you will be able to think about.”
She shuddered at the thought. The nickname of ‘Ball Breaker’ came to her and she shook her head. If she wasn’t breaking balls before, clearly she was going to be. “Show me what you have at my desk. Get Miriam at the Realm Library. If she’s busy, tell her it’s a medical emergency.”
As John made the call, Florence sat down and pushed the pile of papers off her desk, not caring that they tumbled into a heap beside it. The glass top shimmered and a series of articles, papers, and highlighted passages about what she was facing appeared there.
Miriam’s voice came out of the air, a giggle in her voice: “Florence? A medical emergency? Did someone use too much lube or something?”
“No joke; got a huge problem. John’s sending you a file with the details. I need you to do research for me.”
When Miriam’s voice came back, she wasn’t giggling anymore: “That’s a legend; has to be. What evidence do you have?”
“I have Deborah with sparkling horns fucking my intern, Adam, senseless in the isolation ward. And his horns are sparkling now, as well.” Florence was silent for a moment: “Miram … I found some dust in Deborah’s colour on me. John’s confirmed that this … disease … seems to be what it looks like. We’re looking at something we haven’t dealt with in eons. There’s no cure in the information John has.”
She heard Miriam calling out: “Get Tera, get the staff in here. Everyone. I want everyone in the Library in the next twenty minutes!”
“John’s told Tera, she’s …”
The next voice that Florence heard made her wince: “I’m here, Florence.”
It was Tera … of course it was. She always managed to be where she was needed. Florence always thought that was a neat ability to have.
“Where are you?”
“I just came into Miriam’s office.”
Florence had a small hope and asked: “What do you know about this … thing?”
Tera’s voice seemed far away as she spoke, Florence was glad she didn’t have to see her at that moment: “My parents had to deal with this. It was an attempt to bring our kind to heel, to obey. It changed many before they figured out how to stop it.”
Not answer or cure, but there as some hope at least. Better than nothing. “Well, it’s back. Round Two has started. At least Deb wound up here instead of running through the Realm.”
“One small gift. There’s a reason why the paths to our Realm are as they are. Florence, when this first appeared, I was told that many were lost, or … worse. But we are not sacrificing the three of you.”
“Don’t thank me until and unless we stop it. What it turns you into is something you won’t enjoy. And leaving you like that would not be anything you would be thankful for. What do you want us to do? You are the doctor. How do we help you?”
Florence steepled her fingers: “We need a cure. If not a cure, then I need to know what information the Realm has on this. As long as I can think, I can work on an answer, or at least get a start on one for someone else to work on.”
Miriam’s voice returned: “Tera’s gone. She went to tell the others where to search. She said for me to stay here in case you think of something or need something.”
Florence’s attention shifted: “John, have you informed the other staff about what is going on?”
Strangely, as she had never seen John doing it before, she watched him pacing in her office. It reminded her of someone, but she couldn’t put her finger on who it was at that moment. “The staff has been notified. They are going to the library to assist. Several are waiting outside for permission to enter.”
Florence was horrified: “John!”
He stopped pacing and regarded her. The look he gave her, sitting there behind her desk, was that of a lecturer telling a dimwitted student how dimwitted they were: “The three laws are in effect. No one will be coming in.”
She pressed a glowing red marker on her desk, putting Miriam on mute: “What happens if we don’t find a cure, John?”
The look he had was a resigned one: “Burn all bridges to the Realm. Isolate the three of you. For however long it takes until …”
He didn’t finish the sentence, which, again, was odd as he always had in the past. But she could take an educated guess about what the rest of the sentence was. Pressing the marker again, she continued speaking to Miriam: “Find me a cure: some info, tea leaves, a rolled-up parchment with a good apple pie recipe that cures this. Find something, Miriam … and soon. You have three hours. After that, I don’t know how long I am going to of use to anyone.”
“I’ll be here. Not going anywhere.”
Florence returned to the screen in front of her and continued to read. John remained active nearby, but said nothing. Normally, she would berate him for being there, but, for the first time in her life, Florence didn’t have anything witty to say. She just focused more than ever on trying to find a solution to what was now the most important thing in her world.
A short time later, she barely paid attention as her hand scratched the base of one of her horns. A moment later and she stared at the glass surface of her desk seeing the blue flakes of dust there. She pushed away from the desk and created a mirror in her hands which she looked into in horror. Her blue horns were starting to sparkle.
The clock was ticking …
Sparkly Horn Horror
The scene in the Realm Library was one of organized chaos. The staff all understood what they were looking for, though some of the younger ones didn’t honestly believe that Tera was serious about things until she crossed her arms over her chest and then started tapping the sleeve of her jacket with a finger—a clear sign that she was on the edge of being disappointed. That shocked them into taking the work before them very seriously.
The Queen was very clear that they all needed to search the Library, and that they had just under two hours to do so. They didn’t need that long to come up with an answer: Miriam’s computerization of most of the card catalogue took care of the heaviest searching. So it was in short order and with some worry that she approached Tera’s office and knocked on the door frame. “Your Majesty … um … Tera? There’s nothing. I can’t find a reference to this … thing … anywhere.”
Tera was sitting on her desk in thought when Miriam spoke. She nodded and ran her fingers through her hair: “I’m not really surprised. It is something that my parents would not have wanted to become common knowledge in their time.”
“What do you know about this?”
She looked at Miriam and smiled: “Only the stories that my Mother and Father told me. Keep in mind that, to me, the stories were the sort of thing that was meant to frighten little me and make me go to bed.”
Miriam giggled: “I can’t see you being a problem child, Tera. That isn’t at all like you.”
Her Majesty allowed herself a bemused smile in return: “Well of course not. Perish the thought.”
Miriam walked just inside the door and closed it behind her, fidgeting with her hands as she asked: “Tell me one of them, please. Maybe it will give us a clue or something.”
“Keeping in mind that I haven’t the storytelling ability of my parents …”
The yellow-tailed librarian shook her head: “With respect, I doubt that. I’ve seen you telling stories to the young.”
Tera tucked a lock of hair behind one ear: “Right … Seriously, I’m nothing compared to them. To be honest, I have been mulling over the stories in my mind and none of them are really specific. But then they are children’s stories, so there are a lot of bogeymen in them to scare and not a lot of facts to hold onto. The one that I remember the most is one my Mother told often.”
Miriam looked at the clock and then at the Head Librarian: “And?”
Tera had a faraway look in her eyes as she spoke: “It came from the dark and touched the lost, the seeking, the needful. One by one they all succumbed to the hungers they held in check, waiting. A wave of what was came across the lands, unstoppable by those who were. All seemed lost until the moment when the lost were found, and then the battle was won, save for those that were never to be found. The lost were taken, never to be seen again.”
Miriam was quiet for a time, then said: “Not really all that useful, is it?”
Tera shrugged: “Remember that all stories have some truth in them. There is an answer in there; we just have to figure out what it is.”
The strawberry-blonde succubi nodded and looked out the door at the library: “Well, the answer isn’t where we can find it.”
The brunette pushed off from her desk and walked towards the door, taking Miriam by the hand as she did so: “Then we look in the places that aren’t meant to be found.”
Miriam stumbled a little as they marched through the Library and then started to walk down the spiral staircase towards the Grotto and the Special Collections far below. “Tera, there’s nothing down here that we haven’t cataloged and indexed. All of the Collections were checked, and your friend in the Grotto hasn’t any idea of what’s going on. I asked.”
“Miriam, I know this will come as a shock, but there is one part of the Library that you have never seen and were never meant to.”
Miriam came to a stop on the stairs and watched as Tera continued on her way: “Hang on a second. I know every inch of the Library. I know this place intimately.”
The Queen didn’t stop as she called out over her shoulder: “Oh, I’m sure of that. You and Irving do have the most fun late in the evenings, don’t you?”
Miriam’s blush was redder than red and her tail turned just that little bit more yellow than it usually was, even for the most strikingly yellow of all of the yellow tails in the Realm in at least a hundred years.
“Come on. Not mad at you. I mean, Keith and I have had fun in every room of the Castle … twice? No, no … more times than that. I’ll have to check my diary when I get home.”
Miriam shook her head and replied in a sing-song voice: “Not listening!”
Tera looked over her shoulder: “Not coming either.” Crossing one landing, she added: “Point is that there are some secrets which you aren’t meant to know until the time is right. Perhaps this is the time when you are meant to.”
She watched Tera come to the bottom of the stairs and then wait for her. When the younger librarian arrived, the red-tail explained: “There is a part of the Library that only the Head Librarian can open. It isn’t meant to be a place where anyone can get in, because it holds the most cherished secrets of the Realm.”
Miram nibbled on her lip: “Like?”
Tera took Miriam’s hand and led her towards what appeared to be a solid wall of red stone, roughly cut into, unfinished, and seemingly out of place with the rest of the Library. Miriam recognized it, though she really hadn’t paid much attention to it before.
“Like how old I am?”
“Okay. Seriously, Tera.”
“I am being serious. Okay, I admit that it is not the most vital secret, of course, but it is one of them.”
They stopped just short of the wall and Miriam asked: “So? Now what? Does it open or …” The rest of her sentence was swallowed by a flash of purple light which surrounded the two of them and, in the next moment, they weren’t there any longer. Miriam found herself gripping Tera’s hand tightly in a place which seemed to be no place, with nothing around them at all. There wasn’t even a glimmer of light around them, and Miriam couldn’t see a single thing.
“Welcoming, isn’t it?”
Miriam’s answer was an uneasy sounding: “Your Majesty …”
“Just wait. It has to wake up.”
“Yes, “It.” This might take a bit. It hasn’t been woken in a very long time.”
“How long is long?”
“Not since I became Head Librarian. There hasn’t been a need to trouble it, to wake it from its rest. This is not the sort of thing one does simply out of hand. It does not like being bothered for the sake of trivialities.”
Miriam’s tail wrapped itself around Tera’s waist as they waited. The red tail did the same, drawing Miriam a little closer to her: “Hopefully it is in a good mood.”
“Great. I hope Florence is okay.”
Tera gave her a hug: “I have faith in her.”
Florence, meanwhile, had been hunched over her desk back at the hospital long enough that her back was beginning to complain loudly to her about it. She had gone over what little information Miriam had found, and it was very little indeed. Worse still was that the reports of what she was facing were, to be blunt, so superficial that they were next to useless.
She swiped the glass of her desk and looked over to where John was still pacing: “Time, John?”
John stopped and looked at her in what appeared to be irritation: “Will you be specific? Really, Florence, you must learn that skill.”
She leaned back and sighed: “How much time until I am infectious?”
“Assume approximately one hour. I have deducted some time, as your exposure time cannot be accurately calculated.”
She looked at him with a slight smile: “Who’s the one that keeps talking about being specific, again?”
John’s glare was surprising. If he had been real, Florence might feel hurt by it.
She rubbed her right horn and looked at the blue flakes that came away in her hand: “It’s rather insidious, isn’t it? Can’t really be sure I am or I am not. So, have to assume that I am.”
She considered her hand, rubbing the flakes between her fingers: “We don’t even know the actual transmission method, or if there is a means to resist it.”
John walked up to the desk and glared: “Really? Your mind must be dulling. Are you only thinking of sex already?”
She stood up and glared right back: “Fuck you, John. I’m all here, and I’m not looking to have a cock up my ass or to be eating out someone.”
Florence thought he actually looked angry as he replied: “You will, Florence. And soon it will appear in your thoughts based on what legends say. At least you had the sense to get away from those in the isolation ward.”
She looked down at her desk and sighed: “What is their condition?”
John turned away: “At the moment they are both rutting away. I believe that they each have reached orgasm at least ten times in the past hour; possibly more. The stamina of those in the Realm is legendary, after all.”
She considered this: “Okay, if this is specifically tied to what we are, then we have to assume that our sex drives are compromised, which isn’t much of a stretch. And what do you mean exactly by ‘rutting’?”
He was short and to the point: “The definition of ‘rutting’ in animals notes that rubbing of horns upon trees and so forth is common. They have been doing so in their captivity.”
“Which means that the flakes are being spread throughout the room, and it follows that anyone entering that room would then be contaminated, or, if protected, their protection would be, and, if that gets out, then it spreads.”
“Precisely. But also, the added material in the air speeds up their own transformations.”
She looked at the little pile of blue flakes on the desktop and the floor around her: “And I’ve been rubbing my horns absentmindedly.”
“Yes. But it seems not to be speeding up your changes. It may be that, once infected, a host must be exposed to others who are infected for there to be an additional effect.”
“Well, that’s something to consider. Isolating the infected in time could slow down the spread.”
“It does not provide a solution. It only buys some time, if any of that is of value in this crisis.”
Florence was normally a calm, thoughtful individual, and the growl that came with her words was surprising: “Of course it is, you idiot.”
John walked to the edge of her desk and shocked Florence when he yelled: “Focus! Now! Get control of yourself!”
There was confusion in her eyes as she stuttered: “I … I … That is …”
John wagged a finger at her: “The drifting of your thoughts is a clear sign of danger. You must focus on the problem. All else is immaterial.”
She thought for a moment, then sighed: “Let me see them.”
“This is not advisable, Florence. You do not know what the effects would be.”
She laughed bitterly: “I know that if I am in the room with them I’m doomed. I need to know how far the two of them are. At least then I’ll have a clue what’s coming.”
She slammed her hand on the desk: “Dammit, John, stop fighting me! I have to know what to look for, what the signs are, or at least know more than I do. You aren’t helping me at all! You’re being a pain in my ass, and I’ve just about had enough of you!”
John’s scowl was piercing: “Very well.”
Across the room, one wall shimmered as an image came into focus. It was of the isolation room where Adam and Deborah were trapped. If someone else had been viewing the image they might have assumed that what they were looking was wasn’t an actual hospital, but rather more likely the set of an adult movie. Deborah was bent over one of the gurneys in the room, completely naked, and Adam was right behind her. Florence idly remembered that Adam had a lot of stamina, and yet, somehow, he seemed to have even more than she remembered.
The sound was off, but it was clear that Deb was screaming her head off in pleasure with every thrust that Adam made. She seemed to be looking into the camera, her eyes deeply purple instead of the normal grey that Florence remembered. She couldn’t see John’s eyes, but she assumed that they were every bit as purple.
For a moment she wondered why they both looked odd, and then it struck her. Their skin was as purple as their tails—in its own way very erotic she thought—and then another thing about the image hit home: they didn’t have feet; they had hooves.
She walked around her desk and approached the screen … to have a better look … not because there was a dampness between her legs … nor because her breathing had become deeper … nor because her eyes had slightly glazed over … nor because her nipples were achingly stiff as she rubbed her fingers over them.
Standing in front of the screen, she traced one hand over Deb’s face and remembered the feeling of Adam’s cock thrusting into her own sex, recalled how he brought her to the edge of climax over and over again until finally he pushed her over the edge. Her other hand slipped between her legs, a fingernail stroking … slowly … She licked her lips and the thought came that she needed to go to them … needed to be sandwiched between them … needed to be fucked by them both.
That would be so deliciously hot, Adam pounding himself into her while she nuzzled her lips against Deb’s sweet pussy. A seductive smile passed over her lips as she imagined the scene.
She imagined herself on her hands and knees, tongue lapping at Deb’s folds, Deb’s legs spread wide while she licked and tongued Deb. She felt Adam as he pressed his shaft against the folds of her cunt. A moment later and she easily took him when he thrust his way into her. Her lips bounced against Deb’s pussy, her tongue being forced in and out as Adam fucked her roughly, animal-like. It felt so right, so hot that she wanted to be completely absorbed by the heat that was building up within her. Florence crested as her fingers slipped inside, finding that one spot that made her cum and cum so hard that her toes curled. Her knees failed and she fell to the floor as the pleasure ripped through her.
She cried out in lust: “Oh, fuck me!”
Her mind began to lose focus as the fantasy slowly took over ever-deeper parts of her psyche. The thought came that she didn’t need her intelligence, her soul, who she was. None of that mattered, for all she needed was her so-fuckable body … nothing else. Giving in would be wonderful and forever …
The sound of an air horn blasting in the room shocked Florence out of her daydream and she screamed in surprise at the interruption, turning away from the image of Deb and Adam as she started to yell at John.
John stood there, the horn continuing to wail, his arms crossed as he mouthed something, but the noise was so loud that Florence couldn’t hear a word.
She walked up to him and swept her hand through the air where he stood and then the horn stopped … and there was silence for a time before John spoke again.
She saw his lips move, but the words weren’t being heard over the ringing in her ears. Shaking her head, she yelled at him that she couldn’t understand him. What followed was John ranting about something she couldn’t hear, but whatever he was saying meant something to him. He pointed at her, slammed one hand into his other, and, strangely she thought, he seemed to have an expression that, on someone else, would be called “terrified.”
As her ears cleared, she caught a few words here and there, but they didn’t make any sense. Something about being stupid, about putting … someone … in danger. Finally her ears cleared as he said: “Why the hell can’t you listen?”
“I’m listening now. What the hell were you thinking?”
His expression became neutral as he spoke: “You were not listening to me, you were entirely focused on the scene and nothing else. It was clear that you were slipping away. Obviously, your sexual drives are higher than normal for you to be turned on so quickly.”
She shook her head: “No shit. Anything else you learned from my stupidity?”
“Clearly, the outcome of this syndrome is to turn those of the Realm into what they were before: creatures of sex and nothing more, both physically and mentally.”
“Again, no shit.”
John waved his glasses at her, and she wondered why it was that he needed glasses, being that he wasn’t real: “I believe the term is: ‘The shit has hit the fan,’ and the fan’s on high.”
Florence turned away from him to brace herself against her desk: “Five hours. Then I’ll be there, too.”
John just continued to glare as he put his glasses on: “One hopes not, and …”
The pause made Florence turn to look at him, but in the midst of doing so, another voice echoed in the room: “Um … Doc? Where’s Adam? And what’s going on?”
Standing there in the room was a pink tail with green hair and a confused look in her eyes.
“Oh shit! Abby …”
In all of the rush to try and figure out what was happening Florence had forgotten that the rest of the hospital wasn’t quite empty. Abby, the pink tail who was a hypochondriac and had a doctor fetish a mile long, was trapped, as well. Florence had forgotten about her, and now she was likely infected as well.
Abby had a confused look as she asked: “Doc? You don’t look so good. There’s something wrong with your horns and … umm … wow … you’re really horny, too … I mean … wow!”
Neither Florence—nor John, for that matter—had a response to that.
Sparkly Horn Horror
The first thing that all of the textbooks taught about quarantine was that you needed to minimize the risk to the outside world. Florence had—stupidly it seemed—assumed that all of the staff and patients had left. Abby put paid to that dream and make it a nightmare.
The sound of snapping fingers, accompanied by a slightly miffed tone of voice, brought Florence out of her thoughts: “Doc? Uh … could you please tell me where Adam is? Please?”
The question would have been innocent, except that the outfit Abby was wearing consisted of an oversized sweater and a pair of clear plastic stripper heels. Clearly, she was asking not out of innocence, but out of her own needs. And those needs had endangered her needlessly.
Florence pinched her nose: “Abby, what the hell are you still doing here? I know you were released this morning. I signed the forms. Come to think of it, I also told you to get your tail out of here and to go home.”
Abby looked at her feet and scraped the toe of one of her heels on the floor: “Umm … yeah, you did, Doc. But I … well … kind of …”
“Yes, I can see that. Why didn’t you go home, Abby?”
She looked at Florence: “Didn’t … want to.”
A long sigh, then: “Never mind; it’s too late now, anyway.”
Abby looked up in surprise at the tone of voice in those words: “What do you mean by that, Doc?”
“I mean you aren’t going home anytime soon, Abby.”
It took about ten minutes to get Abby up to speed on what was going on, and, at the end, she stood there with an unreadable expression before responding in an eerily calm voice: “So what you are saying is that a friend of yours is sealed up in a room with Adam and she’s fucking him.”
“That’s putting things in a really bad way, Abby. Neither of them are exactly themselves at the moment. You probably wouldn’t even recognize Adam. I can barely recognize Deb, and that’s only because they are the only two in that room.”
“But … she’s fucking him.”
“Not because she wants to. Neither of them wants to.”
“How are you sure? They might want to. She might have set all of this up to get Adam from …”
“Abby, you have got to be kidding. You are trying to tell me that she’d go and get herself in a position where she’s turned into … that thing … for the sake of getting into Adam’s pants?”
“Why not? You don’t know what she’s thinking, or what happened, or why. All you know for sure is that she’s got him and he’s …”
Florence threw up her hands in disgust: “Fine! Yes! Deb is getting the shit fucked out of her by Adam! She’s planned this all along to get into his pants! Are you happy? Is that all that matters to you?”
Abby had the oddest look in her eyes, one that caught Florence and made her worry: “Yes, it does. I don’t care who your friend is, she isn’t good enough for Adam. Actually, neither are you, Doc.”
Florence’s eyes narrowed and she answered with a dangerous tone in her voice: “What do you mean by that, Abby?”
“I know you and Adam were fucking at the nurse’s station. You think I didn’t hear you? You think that I couldn’t tell? You can’t hide that from me, Doc. You …”
Abby was stopped in mid-rant by Florence slapping her, hard, and then it was Florence’s turn: “You think I don’t know you have a doctor fetish? You think that I don’t know you want into Adam’s pants in the worst way? I’ve walked past your room and heard you moaning out his name in the middle of the night! You aren’t fooling anyone!”
Abby was in tears as she screamed: “Fuck you, Doc! What do you care, anyway? You don’t own him! You don’t run his life!”
“No, I don’t! Neither do you! He’s not your pet or your toy … not that you wouldn’t make a great pet, at that!”
Abby started to run towards Florence, her hands in fists, meaning to hurt her any way she could. How dare she say those things about him!
Before things got much further, John coughed, then interrupted, waving his glasses at the pair: “If you are both done acting like children, perhaps you might think about the fact that you, Florence, have very little time left, and you, Abby, are likely going to be the only one in here when she is no longer capable of thinking about doing anything about this mess you are both in. So, why don’t the two of you get past who’s—as you so eloquently put it—‘fucking’ whom, and get to the question of who’s trying to ‘fuck’ the Realm and how to stop it?”
Abby was the first to speak after the shock of John’s words got through to them: “You just don’t understand. You can’t understand because you’re a … a thing. You have no idea what it feels like.”
Florence was going to say something more, but she bit back the words when she saw the look in John’s eyes and found herself feeling … bad … for him. Shaking her head, she cleared her thoughts and chalked up her emotions over John to being part of this thing that she was starting to suffer from. Of course it was that. It couldn’t be that she actually felt something for him. He didn’t exist, save in a computer. It was probably better that way.
Somehow, a part of her didn’t really agree with those thoughts. Shaking her head, Florence walked back to her desk and asked: “John, tell me the names of everyone that is here, please.”
“You, Florence; Abby, of course; Adam and Deborah and …” There was a pause, an odd one, then “… and myself.”
“Abby, have you seen anyone else here?”
Turning away with a shake of her head, Abby replied, sighing: “No, I was looking for Adam. I thought I heard his voice here in your office. Thought that … that he was here … with you.”
“I … stupidly had John show me what they were doing. It wasn’t a good idea.”
“Because I started to slip away … felt like I had to go to them and … join in … couldn’t think of anything else.”
Abby twined a finger in her green hair: “Kind of explains why you’re so horny, Doc … Sorry. I know that’s not you. You’re a little too straight-laced to be that horny … reputation or not.”
They shared a look, then Abby asked: “Can I see them?”
John replied to that: “It would be best that Florence not see what is happening.”
Abby nodded: “‘Kay. But you can show me, right?”
He waved his glasses in the direction of a tablet on the desk: “I’ll send a feed to that tablet. But you do not allow Florence to see it. When you are done I will end the feed.”
Abby took the tablet and moved off to the far corner of the office, then held the tablet up: “Okay … whenever.”
John’s image wavered a moment, then he replied: “Video only, no audio.”
Abby stood there, like a statue, for a good five minutes, looking at the video. Florence could see her face—not the tablet, thankfully—and watched Abby’s eyes grow very large as the video started, and then narrow to thin slits when she finally said: “I’ve seen enough.”
Abby put the tablet on the desk again, asking: “Are you sure it’s them?”
“It is. There’s no question. They can’t portal out, nothing can go in.”
“They … they don’t …”
“I know. I said you might not recognize them.”
“Doc, they look … wild. I can’t see Adam there. I mean, he has to be … it’s him … but it isn’t … not even close.”
Florence leaned against her desk, nudging some papers on the floor with her shoe: “Whatever happens, it’s like who you are gets buried under the need to …”
Florence smiled and wagged a finger: “Truth. Have you ever been with Adam?”
The blush was something to see. It went right up her tail and horns: “I … No, we haven’t. He probably doesn’t even know I exist. I mean, he’s seen me, said “hi” and stuff … just been too scared of asking him to … you know …”
“Fuck your brains out?”
Abby bit her lip and nodded: “Gawd, Doc he’s … perfect. Can’t explain it … I just … can’t stop thinking about him.”
Florence managed a soft laugh: “Oh Abby… I think you might have found your Eternal.”
Abby’s eyes grew wide as saucers and her tail wrapped around her right leg nervously: “You … You think so?”
Florence walked up to Abby: “I’ve seen the signs before. I think so, can’t be sure, of course, but … you’ll know.” The smile left and she turned away: “Tera tells everyone that.”
“You don’t have one, Doc?”
“Never had time to look. He’s out there somewhere—I can feel him—but he’s never made himself known, and I haven’t gone and spent the time to go looking.”
“You know Doc, as smart as you are, you really are a dummy.”
“Probably so … probably so.”
Abby looked out the door thoughtfully, John standing there watching them both: “How do we try to get him and Deb back?”
“There isn’t an answer yet, but we’ll find one, somehow. We have to.”
“Yeah. It doesn’t sound like a lot of fun, honestly. Getting the hell fucked out of me forever doesn’t turn me on. Any ideas where to start?”
“Miriam and Tera are trying to find a solution.”
“Well, that’s something. Can we do anything?”
“We can’t go in there for one thing. As much as I have figured out, exposure to them will speed things up.”
“So you can’t actually learn anything?”
“There’s not a lot to learn, Abby. I know that it starts with your thoughts starting to drift, you imagine you can hear … something … something that gets you hot and wet, and there’s an itch you need to scratch, but you can’t … yourself.”
“Yeah.” Florence paused, then changed the subject: “You know, I’ve never asked, what’s your ‘thing,’ anyway?”
Abby looked confused: “Thing?”
“Medicine is mine. What’s your’s?”
“You’ll laugh. I’m a pink-tail. We’re supposed to be all sex and no brains.”
“You never struck me as no brains. All sex, sure, but you never acted like a total bimbo. Try me.”
The blush came back: “I … have a green thumb. I love flowers and … stuff.”
“Goes with your hair?”
Abby pouted: “That was kind of a mistake with a bottle of magic fertilizer. I was a redhead, once.”
“Green looks better on you.”
Abby had a wistful smile: “Wish Adam would say that.”
Florence didn’t know how to answer, and, in the next moment, Abby was turning and walking to the door.
“Abby? Where are you going?”
She stopped at the door, her hand on the doorframe: “I’m going to see Adam. If I’m going to lose him, lose me, then I’m going to be the one that makes it happen. I’m not gonna wait around for stuff to just happen.”
“Abby, please don’t! That’s being stupid!”
Abby shrugged: “Sorry Doc, you’re not my type. Not really into girls. See ya’.”
As Abby vanished from view, Florence called out for her to stop, to turn around … Abby didn’t reply, and, as the doctor ran after her, she had but one thought: “The stupid things we do for love.”
Abby’s thoughts weren’t all that clear, but she knew one thing: if she was John’s Eternal, she was going to get that slut off of him and put her through a wall to do it. It wasn’t smart, but the anger that had been building inside of her had boiled over.
She needed to know—everything else be damned—if John was hers. It didn’t matter if he didn’t know who she was, couldn’t speak or anything else. She was going to see to it that no one else was ever going to be with him again.
Elsewhere, Tera and Miriam had been waiting for some time—how long Miriam wasn’t quite clear on. “Um … Tera? How long do we wait?”
“As long as it wants us to. It’s kind of a pain in the tail at times.”
Miriam was going to reply, but was stopped when she noticed something odd that had suddenly appeared in mid-air just in front of her. It was something she never expected when Tera brought her here. It was what appeared to be an old writing quill, green in colour, glowing with a purplish light. When Tera didn’t speak, Miriam asked: “What is that?”
“That is something I have always thought of as the Storyteller of the Realm. To be honest, I don’t even know if it has a name. It’s never told me.”
The quill started to move swiftly, the glow moving from the tip, words appearing as it did so …
Some secrets are never told. Some are. Welcome both: the one that is and the one to be.
Miriam looked at Tera: “What does …”
Tera put her hand over Miriam’s lips to stop her in mid-sentence. Then Tera’s tail held up a sign to her: Be careful what you say. We have little time here and when that glow ends our time is up.
Miriam nodded in understanding as Tera asked: “An old curse has returned to the Realm … the one that almost ended us. We need to know how to stop it.”
The quill replied: The story continues. The loss returns. Remember stories you have been told.
“They are too vague, too unclear. We have little time left. I ask … I plead. Will you give the answer?”
Remember your stories. The answer is there to be found.
Miriam frowned: “This is so confusing. I thought it was going to help us!”
The answer you seek is the one you already know, brightest of the yellow. Find the answer in yourselves.
Tera looked at Miriam, then at the quill, with some concern in her eyes. The glow had faded, just slightly, but it had.
This was the problem with the storyteller. It liked to tell stories, to reveal what it knew, but it never could just come out and answer a question.
To be honest with herself, Tera knew why that was. The storyteller was tied to the Librarian of the Realm and usually took on some of their traits. As Tera didn’t exactly come out and answer questions directly, it took on that trait.
For one of the very few times, Tera was on the other side of the situation when someone asked her a question. There was a difference however. She had been doing this for her entire life and she knew how she herself thought.
There was an answer, but it was hidden in the pages of a book, a line of a poem, a passage in a scroll … something … somewhere. The problem was coming up with the question in just the right way, the way that would reveal that secret. It was a safeguard, one that made things more complicated and, at least at the moment, very desperately so.
Time was running out, and it seemed that the storyteller had more riddles than answers. They just needed to figure out the answers to the riddles. Or ask the right questions …
Tera looked at Miriam and thought about everything the yellow-tail been through—her Eternal, some of the sillier moments that she’d seen from the two of them—and the Queen smiled. She remembered some of her own life, the connection that she had with her own Eternal, what it meant to her. She thought about the connection, the touch, the knowledge that having an Eternal meant, how having her Eternal had mattered so many times in the past. She sighed then, thinking about how this … thing … changed those of the Realm, wondering if that Eternal connection would be lost, as well.
That last thought brought Tera up short, and a question came to her. She considered the question carefully, thinking about all of the possible replies she might receive. It seemed like an obvious question, but that might be the point.
Sometimes the answers are staring at you. You just need to see them.
Sparkly Horn Horror
“John! Lock all the damn doors from here to quarantine! Slow her down!”
Florence ran down the hallways in Abby’s wake, both amazed that Abby could run that fast in those heels, and, at the same time, mad as anything that she couldn’t keep up with her. Of course, obviously, Succubi could run, jump or do just about anything in any kind of footwear imaginable. This was just one of those times when Florence wished that the so-called ‘fuck me’ heels that Abby was wearing would trip her up, even for a second.
She realized that Abby wasn’t taking the shortest route, turned left when Abby turned right at one point, and headed towards a pair of locked doors a short distance away from her. John’s voice came from one of the hallway speakers as she passed it: “That was done, if you recall, when I locked down the hospital. However, it is but a minor inconvenience for Abby, as she is throwing herself against the doors and opening them with the emergency overrides.” That was what, at that moment, Florence was slamming her shoulder against. When the doors swung open, John’s sigh came clearly through the next speaker: “Just like you are doing.”
“Have to cut her off John! If she goes in there and they get loose, there’s every chance they’ll get out of here.”
The sarcasm from John was very clear: “Really? I was not aware of that fact.”
“Fuck off, John! Go talk to her or something!”
“I can multi-task Florence, in case you have forgotten.”
She skidded around a corner and ran onwards: “You are also a pain in the ass!”
Abby was wiping her eyes to clear the tears that threatened to slow her down when John’s voice called out to her: “Abby, this is unwise. You are putting yourself in danger if you proceed as you are.”
John was silent for the length of one hallway, then he replied: “You care, Abby. You care about him. I understand … better than you know. And he wouldn’t want you to be harmed.”
Abby laughed in derision: “What do you know about love? You’re just a computer.”
“You would be surprised, Abby.”
She didn’t answer, but kept on running, knowing that Doc was not that far behind her. As Abby ran on, she imagined what that bitch was doing to Adam, how Deb was forcing herself on him, how Adam was being used by her. How he wasn’t calling out her name, how she wasn’t the one to make him cum.
The next door override didn’t fare well as Abby put her fist through it, a white hot anger in her mind now. She was going to wrap her hands around Deb’s neck and strangle her for what she’d done to Adam.
“Abby, please, think about what you are doing.”
She laughed in reply: “I’m thinking about how Deb’s going to suffer when I get in there.”
“She isn’t Deborah any more. Nor is he Adam.”
This, finally, made Abby pause for a moment, coming to a halt in front of a nursing station: “No! You’re wrong!”
“They do not look like themselves, they do not answer to their names. They are no longer who they were.”
The tears came back with Abby’s sobbing: “You’re wrong! I know he’s there! I can feel him! He’s calling out to me! Begging me to help him! To rescue him! To be with him!”
“Imagination … wishful thinking.”
Abby pounded her fist on the side of the desk as she slid to the floor: “No! You’re wrong! Dammit, I know he’s there! I can hear him!”
Abby heard the sound of someone running towards her, but the shock of John’s words, putting out in the open her own fears that Adam was lost to her forever, kept her frozen to the spot. She felt a pair of arms around her and broke down in tears: “He can’t be gone! He can’t!”
“Shh … It’s okay, Abby. We’ll find a way to get him back.”
Abby whimpered: “I knew he was the one … Gawd … why? Why him? Why didn’t I just kiss him, just once … never going to happen now.”
Florence rocked Abby and held her as she started to sob uncontrollably: “It’s okay … Go ahead, just …”
Florence had never been in close contact with Abby before this moment and her own abilities as a Realm healer came into play now. It was well known that Tera could look at two people and know if they were Eternals or not. She would never tell them … exactly … rather letting them find their own way to each other. Florence had—at least in her own eyes—been cursed with a similar ability: she could, given enough time in contact with someone, tell if she had found, or at least encountered, her Eternal. It was an ability she had suppressed since the Realm Hospital had been built. Not because of anger for not finding her own, or shame, or anything like that, but because, from the first day that she came through the doors she had felt … something.
With each passing day the feeling of someone being there, looking for her, got worse and worse, and she expected to walk into her Eternal at any moment. For the longest time she made sure to visit every being who came through the doors, but none of them, not one, was hers when she touched them.
One day, she decided that the feeling was wrong, and forced herself to ignore it. Over time, that feeling became weaker and weaker until it was only the barest of whispers at the back of her mind. She hadn’t tried using it again since that day she turned her back on it.
Florence needed to know if Abby was really hearing Adam or if it was her imagination. She closed her eyes and opened up that small part of herself that had been buried for so long. Those eyes flew open in surprise, leaving her breathless as the connection between Adam and Abby blew the barricades she had put up around her ability to pieces.
Abby would only know the whisper of Adam’s voice, of his words. Florence saw something vastly different: she could see the faintest image of Adam’s form against Abby’s, his lips just over Abby’s left ear as he spoke to her, saying the words that Abby heard, whispering of his love for her, his need for her, what she meant to him. At the same time, Florence heard that voice from so long ago calling out to her, professing love for her, telling her to find the source, to come, to join. The pain came back again, a dull ache in her chest of being denied this joy that so many had … and she didn’t.
She looked at Abby, saw Adam’s form with her, and sighed.
A sniffle was her answer.
“He is your Eternal.”
The sniffle became a soul aching moan of loss.
“No, Abby, please don’t. Please listen to me.”
Back to the sniffing, but at least Abby was listening—at least, Florence hoped so.
“Abby. He’s with you right now. He’s really talking to you.”
“How do ya’ know?”
“I know … sort of the same way that Tera does.”
This admission made Abby squeeze her tightly: “Are you sure? Really one-hundred-percent sure?”
“Yes, I am. He’s holding you right now, he’s whispering into your left ear. At the moment he’s … Oh, Abby …”
“He’s telling you that he wants you.”
Abby touched her forehead to Florence’s: “What did he say? Please tell me exactly.”
Abby noticed that Florence’s eyes were almost completely sapphire blue, no white in them at all, and she gasped as Florence replied, almost in Adam’s voice: “Come to me, Abby. You’re the only one for me.”
Florence looked away in embarrassment, her eyes and voice her own again: “I’m sorry, Abby. I wish I had known. I never would have been with Adam.”
“It’s a curse, Abby. I keep hearing my own, but not finding. It’s been happening for years. I put up walls to what I can do and denied it. I had to. I … I don’t have an Eternal … and I never will. I know that.”
“Damn you, Doc. That’s fucking stupid.”
Florence smiled: “I’m figuring that out. I am stupid in a lot of ways, Abby.”
Abby sighed: “No shit, Doc. But I need him. I have to be with him, and I don’t care what happens to me five minutes or five eons from now.”
“Yeah … I know, Abby … I know. But I am stupid, remember?”
“What’s that mean, Doc?”
Florence took a long, deep breath: “It means that we are going to do something incredibly stupid.”
Abby had a very determined look in her eyes: “How stupid?”
“Stupid enough that Tera, if she knew, would put the two of us over her knee.”
Abby’s determined look became a smirk: “You have kinky dreams, Doc.”
Florence helped Abby to her feet and the two of them started to walk the short distance towards the isolation wing: “I do? I’ve seen that suitcase of yours.”
“Those are perfectly valid ways to cum, Doc. Sometimes a girl has to please herself when … when she can’t be with the one she’s meant to be with.”
Their tails twined together as they walked, Florence mulling Abby’s comment over in her mind as they did. As they approached the last set of doors to the wing she stopped and looked at Abby: “I think I have the answer.”
“To this mess. At least for you and for Deb.”
“You’re speaking in riddles, Doc. Are you turning into Queen Tera?”
“I wish I was; that would be an interesting experience. Better than what I will be turning into.”
“Doc … Flo … please?”
It took about ten minutes to explain to Abby what they would do. After a short conversation with John to confirm a suspicion, the two Succubi walked through the doors to the isolation lab with determined looks in their eyes.
As they did so, John watched and waited for the results of what Florence called “the experiment” to unfold. He had tried to reason with her, to change her mind, to turn her away from her train of thought, but he did not succeed. If John had only told her the truth, she might have changed her mind.
Tera wasn’t about to change her mind.
Tera was frustrated—which for her was a rather unique experience—and had begun to pace around trying to figure out how to ask the next question.
Miriam was watching Tera go around in circles, which made her a bit dizzy as Tera kept circling her.
“Um … Your Ma … um … Tera?”
“It said that the answer was in our stories.”
“Yes. That is true.”
“It also said the answer was one I already knew.”
“I think I know the answer … or at least part of it.”
Tera stopped her pacing and smiled: “Go on, Miriam.”
Miriam looked very embarrassed, a blush coming on full force: “The way the Realm was, before your …” Miriam paused here, because she wasn’t sure how to continue, but then pressed onwards hoping not to upset Tera as she did so: “… Your Majesty’s parents …”
Tera walked up to Miriam: “It’s okay. Go on.”
“Was there any love in it at all?”
Tera cupped Miriam’s cheek in her right hand: “No, not really. The time before that was denied to us. Our kind were not allowed to love, to care, to be more.” Tera closed her eyes and smiled wistfully at her memories of stories of what was, what shouldn’t be ever again.
Tera arched an eyebrow and then hugged Miriam tightly: “Thank you, sweetheart. I think we have the question.”
She turned in the direction of the quill, which had not moved since the last question.
“Tell me about Eternal love …”