Power Awakened Chapter 8
The rooms of the house I acquired are divided by black, red and white lace drapes. They billow with every breeze, every movement and breath. It makes the house feel alive almost, as if the rooms are chambers of the heart, the essential, operation room of a greater entity.
I require each room to be lit by candles, which only serve to intensify the feeling that the place is alive, always moving. Everything shifts here, including the shadows. Especially the shadows, real or imagined. It’s impossible to change position, to lie down or crouch, impossible to think without touching and being touched.
It’s maddening. It’s absolutely me.
The combination of naked flames and transitory, incandescent material is also a testament to all that is me. Beautiful and dangerous. A smile curves my lips.
A candle cutters in its dish, and Skoto makes a move to replenish it.
“Don’t you dare,” I command him.
Skoto nods, returning to his duties in pleasuring me. He’s quite the diligent lover. I enjoy this act in particular, because it serves no purpose other than to pleasure me. I know he enjoys it too, at least at first he did. But I’m sure now, the muscles of his neck and shoulders must be burning and tense, possibly agonizingly so. I smile again. The thought of his pain and his gift to me, despite his discomfort only intensifies my pleasure.
I wait, letting the feelings build. Elation, and a sensation that rolls through my body like nothing I’d ever experienced before. But afterwards, I know there will be less than nothing to show for it. Merely lust fulfilled and flesh sated… until the next time. It’s wonderfully fruitless.
I give Skoto’s hair a vicious tug, just for kicks. It’s unclear to me how long this life I’m living right now will last, but I think I know what has to be done if I want it to continue.
I grin defiantly. Every second here is a second stolen from Him and my services to Him. I am sure He is not pleased with me. I sit up, my good mood marred at the thought.
Skoto pushes away from me, rubbing his jaw as his gaze meets mine. “You had enough?”
I grab him by the hair in response, and shove him to the floor, flat on his back. I settle on top of him, my lips curving.
Skoto looks dazzled and I peek inside his mind, curious as to what he’s thinking as he looks at me, what’s causing that strange expression on his face.
I almost laugh at what I find.
She looks almost celestial, like she’s adorned in lace and sent from heaven just to be pleased by me. Her eyes are so beautiful, gray, cloudy, like oceans of sky.
“Are you an angel?” he whispers.
This time I do laugh, and grab him by the hair again, knocking his head against the ground as though giving a faulty appliance a tap. I lean in close, as though I might kiss him, and watch as his lips quiver. I’ve only kissed him once thus far, and I’ve been teasing him, torturing him with my proximity ever since. I lean even closer, so close that the tiny, almost invisible hairs of my lip touch the full, black hairs of his, making as though I might kiss him again.
I sink down against him, and hear his breath catch. I ride him, feeling taut muscles strain beneath me. His chest shudders and his arms tremble. I watch the strain written on his face with curiosity. Again, there’s a mix of pleasure and pain that excites me somehow. If I ride him fast, he winces as though he can hardly bear it. If I stop, he cries out with frustration. My lips curve again as I revel in the feelings my actions invoke. Oh, to be loved and lost by a human. There’s nothing like it.
No wonder He tries to keep such things from us. I move my hips, feeling that new yet now familiar sensation rising again, like a whirlwind inside me, tearing apart all of my preconceived notions of what I should be and how I should feel.
All the lies He’d fed to us shatter with every new wave of lust, and I wonder if the others I’d led down here are feeling the same way. Tornadoes, and fountains, and oceans of change, rippling across the Earth.
Nothing like this has happened for thousands of years. Part of my job had been to prevent such meetings between angels and humans. I can only marvel and wonder now at how I’d done that job for so long. Meetings such as this are wonderful, and should never have been kept from us.
Skoto moves his lips, but nothing comes out. Because I’m inside his mind, I understand. His emotions are too extreme.
“Okay… shhh. Shhh, shhh,” I whisper, as though speaking to a child. I put the fingers of one hand to his throat, and squeeze, just to see the flicker of fear in his eyes.
“Shhh…” I continue making love to him, even as I squeeze harder and watch as his breath hitches. Fortunately for him, his fear heightens my own pleasure to such a degree that I find release quickly, arching against him. I let go of my choke hold and collapse on top of him, breathing in the musty smell of his sweat.
Skoto takes a minute or two to regain his breath, then begins smelling my hair. I roll my eyes. He treats me as though I’m the most magnificent thing he’s ever come across, savoring every second with me, even though I’d just come very close to killing him.
I frown in sudden irritation. I could tire of this. If he gave as good as he got, then maybe it could go somewhere. But this—this simpering worship…
I sit up straight as a thought occurs to me. Finally, I think I understand, truly understand, why God is always testing these poor humans and then killing them.
It passes the time.
And there’s so much of it.
“He’s mad,” I whisper out loud. “Truly mad. He must be.”
Skoto looks confused. ‘Who are you talking about?”
“You wouldn’t know Him.” I snort and add, “Though He professes to be everywhere.”
“Is he like you?” Skoto looks at me, his gaze wary.
My lips curve. “No.” I’m pleased to see some backbone still remaining in this man. He’s unlike some of the others I’ve fornicated with while here. This one is special. “No, He’s not like me. I was a little like Him, once upon a time. But now—now I’m something else.”
So many of my kind are slaves to the humans, it makes me furious to think about it. I breathe in the stale smell of Skoto’s breath, detecting my own heavenly scent alongside his earthly odor. I watch the candlelight play on the curls of his mustache and beard. Beards disgust me at worst, and disquiet me at best, but I insisted he keep it. I do need to shave the rest of him though. His chest hair is growing back, although I keep all else so bare as to be non-existent. It’s tiresome for him, as I insist on treatments several times a day, but he does it willingly, for me. Which is nothing less than what I expect.
I look at the beautiful man beneath me, watching him breathe deeply, on the edge of an exhausted sleep, and regard him as one looks at something stolen.
Stolen, and then broken. Or rather, transformed. Into what? Only time would tell. It always does. Sooner or later, at least down here, time destroys everything.
I slide down the man’s bare body, using my touch to coax some life back into him, smiling slightly when he erupts with a whimper of complaint. Yes, my friend. That’s it. I want this again, and again, and again… before I run out of time.
His face looks pained, and oddly, it pleases me. I stroke his chest with the razor sharp nails I have affected. I like the look of them. Men seem to like them too, especially when they are red. Or black. I scratch him, and leave red trails down the length of his sternum, but something distracts me.
I cock my head to the side, listening. Yes. The child. I sigh. The child is crying again.
I sit back, scurrying back toward the wall. I’m sure I must look like a spider seeking shelter, but I hardly care.
“Skoto,” I demand. “Shut it up.”
Skoto sits up, four thin trails of blood running down his chest and into his lap.
“Shut it up!” I hiss.
“Yeah,” he mutters, getting up and leaving the room. He swipes the lace drapes away as he goes.
The screaming of the baby becomes momentarily louder, and then quiets down again. I fantasize, hoping beyond hope it’s because he’s smothering her. Then I feel a pang of anxiety, wishing I was doing it myself.
Skoto sweeps back into the room, holding the thing in his arms. It brays at me, and I recoil.
“She needs her mother.”
“What?” I look at him askance, as though he’s mad and I’m not the thing’s mother.
Only, I can’t deny the truth. It had spilled out of my body a fortnight ago, and almost immediately attempted to drink from my breast. An unknown thing, blind and mewling, seeking sustenance.
I’d let it suckle for a few minutes at a time, it was the only thing that seemed to shut it up. But now the idea of touching it again is repulsive. I shudder.
“Get it away from me!”
“But—it’s our baby.” Skoto looks at me in confusion.
“And I’m telling you to get rid of it.” I stand, motioning him closer. “Give it to me. I’ll do it.”
Skoto shrinks back with the baby in his arms, confusion and unease furrowing his brow, and I narrow my eyes at him.
I press into Skoto’s mind. Get me a razor, I instruct him.
He does, returning in moments with razor in one hand, and thing in the other. The baby screams and screams, and I close my eyes in anticipation of the relief that would come, once I make the incision.
I take the baby from Skoto, and he protests. “Mara! No, please!”
* * *
My attention is diverted when the door blows open. In the rectangle of darkness stands the figure of a man that all but illuminates the entire room. The aura around him is so beautiful, like tendrils of luminescence diffused through water; seeking, finding, revealing. Even more beautiful are his eyes, shining like blue fire.
I lower the baby as the figure enters the room, a smirk forming on my face.
Skoto shrinks back, his eyes wide. “What are you?” he asks the glowing form.
“Meet your replacement,” I say in a sing song voice, offering a flourish.
Kaeden shakes his head.
I send the fingers of my mind toward his and meet with resistance. Of course he resists me. I grin, and push harder, like we both know I will. The only anomaly is that his mind doesn’t immediately give way to me like I expect. I frown. Is this ability to resist me unique to him? Or have my powers been weakened by my time spent here with these mortals; my wonderful, doting, stupid, fragile mortals?
“Well, if you’re not here to join me, you must be here for the other thing.”
Kaeden nods, his gaze impassive.
“And how do you suppose to take me?”
I turn to face him, straightening and throwing my shoulders back, gloriously naked and unashamed. Skoto gasps and turns away, as if agonized by the sight of me. I give him a disdainful arch of my brow, and turn my attention to Kaeden. I hold the baby up by one leg, the razor in my free hand.
“You’ve not come for me, have you… you’ve come for this?” I shake the baby like it’s a sack of gold, and it squalls.
Again, maddeningly, Kaeden says nothing.
“Speak!” I yell. “Don’t just stand like some kind of ghost!”
His silence is infuriating, and I wonder if it’s what he thinks it means to be righteous. Yes, because silence is so righteous.
“Take her!” I snap, and toss the baby across the room, as though it’s nothing more than a doll.
Only now does Kaeden move from the doorway. He leaps across the room, forced to jump in order to catch the flying child. His face is etched with panic, as if the baby is the most important thing in the room to him. He catches her as though catching a football, the panic replaced with a look of relief.
In the same instant, I see my opening. I move with preternatural speed, launching myself at the open doorway and leaving my position with an audible crack. Surprisingly, he lets me go, and I disappear through the door.