May 28 2017

A Review of Witches in the Tinderbox: The Succubus Realm by Richard Mikolitch

Witches in the Tinderbox: The Succubus Realm by Richard Mikolitch

Witches in the Tinderbox: The Succubus Realm by Richard Mikolitch

There are some stories that read as being scattered in their focus, the meaning within them. It can be a difficult read trying to come to terms with this, trying to understand what’s going on. This doesn’t always happen, the meaning can be submerged within the telling, the characters, the scenes themselves.

Perhaps where things turn can be held to the imagery used, the tone taken. Myths have their own stories to tell, sometimes they aren’t supposed to be easy to follow, to parse, to come to terms with. But then, not all stories are meant to have a happy ending, or an ending itself to be found.

The book summary is quite odd:

I read of a fair maiden who went fishing with her father and when along the brook she saw a toad. This toad was more beautiful than the rest of the toads and she asked her father if they might catch it and keep it.

The father, knowing they would never be able to catch this fast creature in his own habitat told the daughter if she could catch it she could keep it.

Once a week, after church the two would go to the brook and while the father caught dinner, the girl sat dreaming of the toad.

She would often go to where she had seen the toad before and when she spotted him she would shy away from going after him.

Weeks past and the toad became lonely for company and soon became bold enough to approach the girl who he had noticed spying on him from a distance.

The girl looked at her father and smiled for the toad came right up to her and sat on her foot. The girl lifted up her shoe and took the toad in her hands.

She petted it laughed at it and took it home to play with.

But as happy as the girl was to have the toad she became bored with it and soon forgot about it in her room.

The toad who had given up his toad life to live in a house with a person became sad and wished he had never approached her by the brook.

The toad missed his simple pond and his toad friends who told him he didn’t belong in a large house where everything was given to him. He belonged in the brook where he had to work to catch bugs to eat.

The father came to the girl’s room and saw the toad sitting in the fishbowl as if it were dead. He brought it a fly to eat but the toad didn’t move for the toad became very fat from being given everything instead of earning it.

The father knew the toad needed to return to the brook but he also knew it would break his daughter’s heart to lose the toad.

While he stood looking at the toad the daughter came in and she looked at her father with sad eyes and asked him what was wrong with the toad. She asked did he need the vet or maybe some medicine?

He explained to her that the toad needed to be a toad. She looked at him with quizzical eyes and told her father that he was indeed a toad.

His father told her that looks could be very deceiving.

He may look like a toad; have legs and arms like a toad and a body that can both swim and live on land, but he is loosing the heart of a toad and without a heart nobody is who they appear. The father told his daughter if she loved him she would bring him back to the brook and when the father proposed this the toad although not knowing the language of people heard his words and hoped to God that the little girl agreed.

The girl asked the father if she would ever see him again and the father told he couldn’t say but encouraged her to do the right thing regardless of what she felt.

He told her that she, one day will be wed and while his heart wants to keep her forever, because he loved her so much he would accept what makes her happy.

The girl took the fishbowl off the shelf and removed the toad.

She and her father took the buggy to the brook and released the toad.

They watched the toad swim across the pond and toward the other toads.

She anticipated him to be welcomed but instead they seemed to reject him.

He tried to play toad games and even gave mosquito larva for them to snack on but the more he tried the more they rejected him.

The girl cried for she knew her desire to control the toad made him become an outcast from the brook.

The book summary isn’t so much a summary as it reads very much as an example of the writing style and tone the work has. I would suggest that a clearer summary might be: The world is many layers deep, each with mysteries, joys, losses and agonies. Our search for understanding creates a path well worn over time by we that have come before. Among our waking moments comes our dreams and within both the succubi await us, either to show the way or obscure it from our eyes.

Overall, the story is a difficult read in that there is a lot of repetitiveness. Moments are returned to, over and over again, from one perspective or another. The tone of the work, how the story is told is odd and stuttered from point to point, making the story read, as was intended I think, a series of waking dreams. There’s quite a bit of history involved, a lot of allegories encountered. Different beliefs come into play as well. It is a complex story about one character’s path through to enlightenment, but along the way the sidetracking and confusion gets in the way of the story itself.

As part of this, there are appearances of several of the most well known of the succubi, Lilith and her sisters, and that was interesting mainly for how their characters are revealed over time. There’s quite a telling moment, when the truth come out, where the mythos crashes into history and that was quite an unexpected thing. It made things turn, change direction and be something quite different than what I thought the work was going towards.

This is not a work of erotica, it’s far from being so. It is, overall, an exploration of one soul, how they came to be and what drives all else around them. It is deeply emotionally draining at times, some of the imagery is very harsh or concerning as well. The puzzle felt like it was missing several pieces and at the end of the work, that feeling of loss and helplessness was very profoundly felt.

Again, this is not an easy read, not by any means. The editing structure leaves a lot to be desired, there are a scattering of spelling mistakes here and there as well. The tone and repetitiveness becomes an issue quite quickly, and there’s a tendency to skim over parts of the work as a result. It isn’t a story about succubi themselves, but rather they being the door to something other to be found. That I thought was well done, in many ways, but my issue was that I just couldn’t quite find my way into this work.

The story is there, but it is a struggle to overcome the telling to encounter the story itself.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

The editing of the story, how it is told, is a bit of a struggle to manage as a whole. While that’s a literary device and it works, I felt like it shrouded the point of the work far too long. Piecing together what’s going on, who each character is and what they represent means having to read the work very carefully and not skim over the more repetitive moments that come along.

The work was billed as being the first in a series, but as of this review no further works have appeared. I’m unsure of how things would continue overall, there seems to be a close and little to move further upon.

While there is a succubus theme, there are succubus characters and there’s a fair bit of focus upon that aspect, it’s less of a story about succubi than it is a work about redemption and redeeming. One of the more unique pieces of storytelling I’ve read by far, but I just didn’t quite find my way as deeply into the work as I would have liked to.

 

Tera

May 27 2017

More Morrigan Aensland Tribute YouTube Art

Another of the many YouTube tributes to Morrigan Aensland today on the Tale… This one is a gallery of some of her art, the music is a little video game hyper, but it isn’t that out of the realm of possibility at least.

 

If you cannot see this YouTube here on the Tale, please try this link.

As is my usual custom when shared YouTubes like this, here is the single image of Morrigan that I liked the best of them all…

Morrigan Aensland Vid Screenshot

I do like Halloween art of Morrigan, it’s usually quite cute, a lot of fun, and just makes me smile, so this art checks all of those boxes by far…

But there is one other work that I liked as much, mostly because it isn’t Morrigan in her usual look and I think that’s something special… The problem is that the art doesn’t actually appear in the video, only on the preview image that appears before you actually watch the video when it is embedded rather than seen on YouTube.

Morrigan Aensland Vid Screenshot

It’s just the most interesting look for Morrigan that I have seen in some time, something that I would dearly like to see more of honestly because it isn’t so much about Morrigan being a fighter, it’s more about her being mysterious and I rather like that.

 

Tera

May 26 2017

A Review of Second Chance Succubus by Siobhan Muir

Second Chance Succubus by Siobhan Muir

Second Chance Succubus by Siobhan Muir

The mysteries which envelope a character can be, in many ways, more important than the overall story at times. That can be, for the most part, simply a question of whether what is told is the whole story or if there’s something left waiting in the wings. Each character has their own flaws, problems, wants and wishes. Sometimes, however, it is the fear within that is the most telling thing of all.

The singularly most difficult theme to write about, and do so well, is that of a D/s relationship. Far too often the truth isn’t told, or the reality is bent or twisted to the point where it destroys the story as a whole. But sometimes it can be told well, expressed in the right way, and gives voice to a simple truth.

The work tells the story of:

Everyone deserves a second chance…

As an ancient succubus, Lady Aislynn is cursed to survive off sexual energy for eternity. To live without killing, Aislynn runs the Underground, a pleasure club in Las Vegas where she safely feeds on the ample eroticism of her patrons. A murder inside her club threatens the haven she’s built, even as it brings unwanted attention—and possible salvation—in the form of two handsome brothers, both in search of the truth.

Werewolves Chayse and Nik Wolffe haven’t seen each other in five years, and the last place they expect to cross paths is a strip club. The detective and PI find their cases intertwining around the enticing Aislynn and her club. Nik may believe in Aislynn’s innocence, but Chayse knows all too well the destructive power of a succubus. He’s determined to keep himself and Nik free of her spell.

Nik’s missed sharing lovers with his brother, but Chayse seems dead-set against reconciling the past or building a future. Luckily fate, and the Goddess, may have plans for the two embattled werewolves and the succubus with love enough for them both.

The past haunts three souls in different ways. One is haunted by pain, another by loss and the third by a mistake lost to time. For Aislynn, that past haunts her, every day and it seems that she’ll never find what she needs as a succubus in another soul. But what happens when two souls bring about possibilities? Is the risk and fear crippling or can she overcome, along with two souls in pain, and find what’s been impossible?

The work is a delightful mix of mystery, seduction, self-discovery and need. At the same time, there’s a remarkable understanding of the truths in a D/s relationship that are so often overlooked by those thinking they understand such things, but they do not. While there is a lightly touched upon BDSM theme, it isn’t the core of the story. It does add some flavour, but it isn’t the point.

The story fixes on the needs of the three main characters, the search to overcome their past, their pain and their needs. There are deeply heartfelt moments, shattering loss and aching pleasures to be found for each. But none of it comes easy, it is a battle and it feels right as the story unfolds.

The twins relationship, how each has been harmed by things in the past, is dearly felt through the work and it is a real struggle for both of them to come to terms with what they discover in each other and within Aislynn herself. The character development that comes from that leaves all of them changed, in many ways, but more so, there’s a real feeling of being somewhere more than they were at the beginning and in better ways.

Aislynn, the succubus of the work, is a delight, I loved her attitude, her flaws and her needs. She isn’t what one might expect a succubus to be, and really that’s core to this work. That difference, that need and choice made by her makes it more complicated for the twins to overcome their own issues, but when that comes to pass, the heat is wonderful.

The erotica in the work is wonderfully hot, the threesomes are delicious, the feeling of need from the characters comes out really well. Beyond the erotic couplings, Aislynn’s role as a Domme, is so well told that in many ways the time before the pleasures shared has more heat than the erotica at times. For me, the heat comes in the telling of the D/s relationship in all of its forms. It isn’t silly, it has the right one and as the dance of discovering what each character needs comes through, that heat was perfect in every way.

There is, however, one achingly missing part of the story and that comes to Aislynn herself. She’s a wonderful character, a loving Domme, an inspired succubus that cares and needs to be so. But she also has a secret and when that comes out, it’s an amazing revelation, one that was exactly right in so many ways. The problem is that truth leave a huge mystery and story not told and I really wish it had been more than it was. There are some hints, a little bit of truth told, but there’s so many questions left about her and I dearly wish there’d been time taken to explore them.

Well written, a delight to read with heat that simmered throughout. The characters are amazing, the world has so much to tell and I loved it dearly for being faithful to the D/s relationship. I just really wanted to know more about Aislynn than the veiled hints that came through.

Four and a half out of five pitchforks.

I really wanted more about Aislynn than what the author revealed about her. While so much was a delight, the little teasing about her past just made me ache to know so much more. Her secret, when revealed, was wonderful and fit so well, but then it opened the door to so many things to ask, but never were.

Overall however, that missing part of the story doesn’t detract from the wonderful understanding of what a D/s relationship is. That alone makes this story powerful and faithful to the characters and the world they exist within. It is a wonderfully complex story, a telling understanding of the needs of those that have a need and find the one to share it with.

To my surprise there is a work prior to this one in which Aislynn makes her first appearance. I wasn’t aware of it when I read this work, and I’m sure my view of her as a result might be a bit altered as a result. We’ll see how that plays out when that work comes up for review.

 

Tera

May 25 2017

Succubi Image of the Week 488

An anime style succubus for this week’s Succubi art, one that, for me, sort of has the style that I think the more warrior-focused Succubi of the Realm might be likely to take as their armour. It’s an interesting thought, what does a Succubus fighter look like, how far do they take being succubi and how far are they, in a sense, warriors…

Elda by Fu-reiji

Elda by Fu-reiji

This art is called Elda and is by an artist on DeviantArt called Fu-reiji. You can find the original page on DeviantArt where I found this art here and this artist’s page can be found here as well.

I love her overall look, her tail makes me smile, though I think her horns are a little bit too large for her body otherwise. That said, the armour is lovely, and while it isn’t exactly the most functional thing, I can see her being a bit more of a… close up and personal sort of seductress, and that idea makes me smile.

An interesting expression she has, lovely skin tones, hair and sparkling eyes. I’m also quite happy that her wings aren’t torn or ripped, it adds a bit more power to her overall form seduction-wise at least and I feel like that’s the point after all.

Succubi don’t have to fight to win, but at the same time, they are anything but helpless…

 

Tera

May 24 2017

A bow tie, horns and tail aren’t much for a costume…

Black Devil AccessoriesThere are, of course, accessory kits that offer some items to turn, so the ad copy says, any dress into a more devilish one. While that might be true, along with the “devilish” comes the more “tacky” much of the time. Possibly the oddest thing I have ever come across this time in an accessory kit. A bow tie.

This is the 3 Piece Black Devil Costume Accessory Kit, which comes with the horns, the tail and a bow tie as displayed by the model here. It sells for about what you might expect, $5 US.

It is, really, another example of tackiness, but at a low, low price. Which really doesn’t make it any better at all.

What I cannot wrap my tail around is the bow tie. The horns and tail are lousy, but they make some sense at least. Why a bow tie?

I can’t think of a good justification to explain it other than the company that put this together needed to get rid of an overstock of bowties or something like that.

Perhaps I might be slightly more inclined to ignore the bow tie if the top and bottoms this model is wearing were included, though that might be stretching things a bit.

I don’t think it’s horrific. Cheap yes, but then it’s worth $5 so one shouldn’t expect much of anything from this.

It really does nothing for me, the horns are meh as is the tail and as for the bow tie… I’ve seen better.

One and a half out of five pitchforks.

Uninspiring really, and if you had a costume that needed this to make it better, I shudder to think what that looks like…

 

Tera

May 23 2017

A Review of Breaking Hell’s Rules by Lyssa Dering

Breaking Hell's Rules by Lyssa Dering

Breaking Hell’s Rules by Lyssa Dering

Setting the stage for a story needs a hook, something that’s a bit different, a little distinct which then leads towards the telling of the story that’s unexpected. The characters themselves hold the core of the story, but then what happens around them needs to have meaning, a reason as to why things happen as they do.

But telling a story with meaning, offering a threat, but not really giving it a hold, a means for following through, takes some of the power of it away. It doesn’t mean that everything is lost, far from it, but offering up a choice to be made and then washing it with but a single sentence, is a little bit rote, all things considered. Finding a soul to love for a succubus is important, no matter what that means after all.

The work tells the story of:

Freedom wasn’t supposed to be this dangerous…

When succubus Reth finally meets their soul quota and gains freedom from Hell, they decide to take up residence in New Orleans. Immediately they discard the body they’ve been wearing since 1952 and slip into something a little more virile, pleased to find they get a cozy apartment for their trouble. Too bad the apartment has a joint lease with their body’s ex-boyfriend Jude.

Jude is walking around with a black eye and a bad attitude, and when Reth tries to explain things, Jude doesn’t believe them. Plus, he refuses to move out. Reth doesn’t want to take Jude’s soul, and they really like this body. So they show him some succubus action minus the soul-grabbing, hoping to scare him off.

But they never expected for the mortal to take a liking to them. And they never could have predicted just how pure Jude’s soul would be. When Reth unwittingly commits a sin against Lucifer, they’ll need Jude’s help to avoid an eternity of suffering… For them both.

Reth’s paid their dues and now things are supposed to be different. They don’t need to claim souls anymore. They don’t need to be dealing with Hell any longer. But it seems that the body they’ve chosen has a roommate that they can’t resist. The truth, it seems, brings them to a choice that Reth doesn’t want to make. Perhaps, it’s not impossible for a succubus to find love in another soul.

The work takes a slightly different view of succubi and by doing so makes them to be neither a she or a he, but a “they” instead. It’s a bit jarring at the beginning, but over time that fades into the background. While Reth does claim souls, they inhabit bodies or rather their forms, over time and as such they shift from being male or female as their path takes them. This does work well, is isn’t dwelled on either. Reth is who they are, from beginning to end, but more so, they grow as a character in really unexpected ways which were a delight.

Reth’s character begins as being a bit standoffish, a little bit difficult to like, but when Jude comes into the picture, that’s when the story takes a turn and Reth becomes amazing both in character, but in their story as well. In the same way, Jude’s self loathing and confusion is a terrible thing at the beginning, but soon he becomes focused, more sure and that develops him as a character tremendously.

There is a smattering of erotica along the way, which is lovely, hot and passionate. The erotica is male/male themed, but it isn’t silly or over the top which happens a lot. There’s real love and connections made and in being so the genders of the characters become irrelevant.

While the main plot is very good, and both main characters and the supporting ones are very interesting, have depth and I liked, there was one character that didn’t quite live up to my expectations. Lilith was a fleeting presence in the work and it’s a shame because of how she’s portrayed before and afterwards. A few paragraphs of anger and then she’s gone didn’t, at least for me, really show a lot about her.

What’s missing here, overall, is that the background about succubi isn’t explored as much as I think it needed to be. The story itself is a delight, but without the missing parts I think it was a bit too quick, a bit too unsure at times. Perhaps building on the universe more might have helped in slowing the action somewhat.

Four out of five pitchforks.

It’s a different take on succubi, one that I thought was really interesting, but as much as it was, the exploration of that weren’t as deep as I wanted them to be. Getting to the meaning of why things are would have been nice. Telling more about the aftermath would have been good. Most of all, getting deeper into Jude’s life I think would have answered a lot of questions lift behind.

 

Tera

May 21 2017

A Review of A Demon’s Desires & The Succubus Brothel Bundle by Satine LaFleur

A Demon's Desires & The Succubus Brothel Bundle by Satine LaFleur

A Demon’s Desires & The Succubus Brothel Bundle by Satine LaFleur

A review of a collection of stories today on the Tale which brought with it a bit of a problem for me. There are certain names which place images and memories in one’s mind. For example, the use of a character’s name that appeared in a television series is a bit of a problem for me. It’s difficult to overcome the images and voices when a story is using the name, but completely different characters.

That said, once past that issue, it’s up the story to hold interest, give the character life and make things interesting. That can work, it sometimes needs a bit to develop, but it’s not impossible. But sex alone doesn’t make that work really, character development does.

The collection tells the story of:

This bundle is a collection of different steamy and sinful stories from A Demon’s Desires and The Succubus Brothel, two series from Satine LaFleur. Follow Tamsin the succubus and Vex the demon on their separate quests to satisfy their sexual hunger and uncontrollable urges.

The Succubus Brothel

  • A Hotbed of Lust and Sin: Tamsin has lived her sinful and hedonistic life as a succubus for hundreds of years, feeding off of the sexual desires and primal, carnal urges of others to survive. She’s tired of having to chase down every meal, and has set up the perfect base of operations for them to come to her instead. Willing, ready, and able to give her exactly what she needs. This dominant succubus knows what she wants, and she definitely knows how to get it just as good as she gives it, bringing all of their ultimate fantasies to life.
  • The More The Merrier: Hedonistic succubus Tamsin has spent centuries living in sin–feeding off of every sexual desire she could, seducing men, women, and magical creatures alike, and traveling the globe while she did so. In our last short she decides to open up a brothel instead, allowing the eager residents of the land to come to her with their carnal needs and overwhelming lust. Now she’s overcome with an insatiable hunger for sexual desires that don’t seem to be satisfied by using just one partner at a time. Join this dominant demon as she takes the matter into her own hands, mouth, and… well, you get the picture, feeding off of a group of wayward soldiers while making all of their lustful dreams come to life.

A Demon’s Desires

  • His Meeting with the Mage: After being held prisoner in a dungeon for decades Vex finally escapes, only to realize he has no idea who, or what, he is… or what the urges he’s now feeling are. On a journey to find his memories, Vex comes to realize he’s living in an age of magic, dragons, witches, and demons… in fact, he himself is a demon possessing a body that isn’t his own, and now he has carnal urges and sexual desires to feel and taste flesh that are stronger than any mortal has ever experienced. He wants it, he needs it in a way he never knew possible. Can this busty open-minded mage satisfy his taboo, demonic desires?
  • He Takes What He Wants: Vex has recently found out he’s a demon possessing the body of someone long passed, but the more pressing concern for him is the urges he can’t control anymore. His body is compelling him to indulge in all sins of the flesh–to touch it, taste it, and carve it open so he can watch the blood flow. Now his inner demon is in control, and when he happens upon a village with a beautiful, pure woman that he becomes mesmerized by, he has to have her, and he’ll get her by any means necessary… no matter the consequences. No longer responsible for what his body does, or how far it’ll go to experience passion with the innocent maiden, will Vex’s sexual desires cause him to take what she holds most dear?

A collection of stories about the needs of one versus the world around them. The expression of the darkness within and the cravings that some cannot be without. Sometimes sex is just sex, but sometimes it’s life itself, satisfying that need can be all that matters.

The stories themselves are interesting, have heat, tell something about each of the main characters. I dearly wish the author had picked names other than Tamsin and Vex however as for me, as a Lost Girl fan, I couldn’t quite separate the characters I love from that series to these in the stories here. They are not, to be clear, the same characters, and they gave their own voices, but some of the moments gave me pause as I tried to keep myself from returning, almost continually, to Lost Girl’s story arcs and characters seen.

Setting that aside, the stories themselves are complex, interesting and had some good heat at times. Between the Tamsin and Vex stories, I felt the Tamsin ones were a lot stronger, I found them far more interesting as well. The Vex stories were, for me, too violent and as such I didn’t find my way into those stories as I did with Tamsin.

Tamsin was more persistent in her stories, she was a force to be reckoned with. The opening passage told of her past, how she made some of the choices she did and what things meant for her. It was a slightly different take on succubi and their needs, which was interesting. At times she was very flippant, skimmed over some plots that I really wanted to see explored, and once the groundwork of her home was laid out, things turned rapidly towards the erotica.

There’s some good heat to be found, Tamsin is very dominant and while some of the sex borders on porn movie levels, it just manages to keep from falling down that path too far. There’s a hint of the struggle within Tamsin, how her needs push her sexuality, but the hints given aren’t expanded on and I really was looking forwards to seeing her fight her nature, or at least be tipped over the edge on occasion.

Vex’s stories centred on the theme of pain and suffering, some very harsh domination and a series of sexual encounters that didn’t have a lot of heat for me. The story itself, of trying to work things out was interesting, but when the erotica came into play or the violence came crashing into the story, I found myself flipping the pages and skimming those parts. It’s really a question of my own tastes with regards to the Vex stories and I just didn’t like them all that much. They read like a very pale shadow of Tamsin’s in many ways.

Being that the Tamsin stories where stronger, I would have liked to know more about her, the past she’d been through. There are hints, vague ideas, but they only add a bit of spice to things before they are passed over and the story rushes onwards. Much the same can be said about Vex as well in that there are some teasing thoughts about him, but they aren’t explored as much as they could have been.

Three and a half out of five pitchforks.

I enjoyed the stories about Tamsin a lot more than those about Vex, mostly I think because there was less seduction in the latter as well as it being quite violent in comparison. My other issue with the collection comes to, in my thoughts, seeing the characters from Lost Girl when I see the names Tamsin and Vex. It’s hard to get around that mental picture and I kept stumbling over it.

I wish there would have been more about Tamsin, overall, especially more about succubi in this universe. I would have liked more about her thoughts, why she made the choices she did than all of the sex scenes. Most of all, it would have been a delight to be able to have to deal with the problems of running a brothel and a pub, how she manages to keep her succubus nature from being exposed.

As for Vex, I just couldn’t find my way into the story for all of the violence. There didn’t seem to be a focus, a point to things and the character himself was a confused mess within himself. Sorting that out, in some way, would have been a good thing. There’s some appeal in parts of the work, but that’s not enough to overcome the things that I couldn’t quite enjoy.

A contrast in storytelling, more than anything else, which has some attraction, but needs more.

 

Tera

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