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Lily (Dreams of Control Universe)
|Dreams of Control character|
Hell To Pay
Hell To Pay: Carnival of Lust
Lily is the name given by magician Simon Marshall to the Succubus he summons for the first time. When he asks her name, she says he couldn't pronounce it because he "hasn't got enough tongues." He then decides to call her "Lily," which she likes and happily answers to for the rest of the story. Lily's primary form is that of a tall, well-curved human woman with pale skin, green eyes, and red hair, who appears to be in her early twenties. Her "passport" says she is exactly 21 years old and a citizen of the Czech Republic. She dresses in clothes which highlight her incredible beauty and perfect figure. (From the Author: "Lily looks very like the Vampire Bride Aleera in the film "Van Helsing," except that her eyes are green.")
Lily herself is thousands of years old, and has been summoned by magicians in both Roman Empires as well as throughout Europe and the Middle East. Hell To Pay is set in the present (ca. 2012-2013) and she says she hasn't been summoned for around a hundred years due to the decline in the belief in and use of magic. She has a vague sense of the general state of human civilization (she knows about the Internet, for instance) but doesn't know anything in particular about a place unless she's been there.
Lily seems to enjoy her job and relishes the idea of harvesting souls, either to "eat" or to trade with other demons. Like all Succubi (in the Dreams of Control universe, anyway) she has no "moral sense," only the imperative to follow the purpose she was created for. She will readily copulate with animals or assume the form of a child for sexual purposes if the summoner requests it. However, she isn't actively vicious or cruel (unless her summoner wants her to be) and much prefers using lust to get what she wants to overt acts of evil. As the story progresses she evolves, demonstrating that Succubi aren't just "extensions of the Adversary's will."
Succubi in the Dreams of Control Universe
Lily is a "normal" Succubus, and the only one the reader encounters in Hell To Pay and its tweenquel Hell to Pay: Halloween Dreams. (It is not known how many there are: the implication is that there are several.)
According to Lily, demons are the creations of the Adversary (an angel who rebelled against God and was cast out of Heaven.) Succubi are demons created for the purpose of seducing humans and stealing their souls through lust. They don't have physical bodies per se: they "project" an image which looks and feels real, which can manipulate objects, and which they can alter at will or at the instruction of their summoner, assuming that that right was part of the pact of summoning. They first appear in a form which will be as tempting as possible to the summoner. Both Succubi and Incubi are found in the Dreams of Control universe, and are implied to be very similar. (Both sorts of entity will "lust up anything with a soul," although Succubi prefer to seduce men and Incubi prefer women.)
In Hell To Pay: Halloween Dreams Lily makes a passing reference to warlocks, which she distinguishes from magicians. The implication is that warlocks, like magicians, can summon demons. She also implies that warlocks are much rarer than magicians and may be extinct.
- Succubi in the Dreams of Control universe have the following known powers:
- They can read minds. They can read a person's whole life story in the blink of an eye.
- They can increase lust to any degree (including a physically painful level) in the hearts of those who are already lustful. The object of this lust can be specified. A person whose lust for another is increased sufficiently will do anything that person commands.
- They are physically indestructible and do not age.
- They produce "succubus milk," a caramel-colored milk which flows from their breasts just like normal human breast-milk. It is incredibly tasty (according to Simon it is sweet and spicy at once) and it can "steal the minds" of those who taste it. They can, however, moderate its addictive power if commanded to do so.
- They can create a completely convincing multi-sensory illusion of any physical object, including gold, gems, passports, airplane tickets and clothing. This is the same power they use to create the illusion of their own bodies.
- Their sexual fluids have a broad variety of properties which are limited only by the imagination and desire of the summoner.
- Anything they swallow disappears. (They can eat and drink, but do not excrete accordingly - though if the summoner bends that way, see "multi-sensory illusions".) This is more useful than it might seem, as at one point Lily mentions that that's how she got rid of a magical entity someone had summoned to try to get out of a bargain. She couldn't get past it and it regenerated when she tried to physically destroy it, so she ripped it to pieces and ate it.
- They can influence cameras, computers, and other forms of record-keeping to remove all traces of their presence.
- They can detect the presence of magicians and have at least some power to detect and counter magic.
Succubi in the Dreams of Control universe have the following known limitations:
- They cannot increase lust in the minds of people whose hearts are pure, or in children.
- They cannot affect animals.
- If they speak one of the names of God (including just "God") they are instantly "struck down" (destroyed) by that Entity.
- Their abilities are strictly proscribed when it comes to the person who summoned them, assuming the ritual was properly done. They can't read their minds or increase their lust without permission, and succubus milk is not addictive to the summoner.
- Any physical object they create vanishes if they get more than a few feet from it.
- They cannot violate the pact of summoning, the bargain they make with the person who summons them into the physical world. However, they can interpret it extremely creatively.
- Christian priests and/or holy places are a danger to them in some unspecified way. (Lily says that she won't go near a church, as this would be "too close to an order to destroy myself.")
- Similarly, there are unspecified restrictions on how much they can reveal themselves as supernatural beings. Succubi who go "too public" may be struck down by God or opposed by the Church.
- A sufficiently powerful magician can banish a Succubus back to Hell. However, if there is a soul contract in force, they can come right back. Otherwise they must remain there until summoned again.