[mc, mf, fd, md]
((the following piece was written for a Tabico fan, known in the EMC community by the suitable alias of olithoi. It’s an erotic, dark fantasy/horror mind-control piece that tries to combine some of her literature references with my metaphorical style when it comes to plots and character development. The end product is quite a wicked ride that may not please everyone but, hopefully, will strike a couple of chords here and there. Warning: it’s quite dark, one of the darkest pieces I’ve ever written.))
The power of the written word is one of the greatest mysteries in the Universe and, for millennia, many men and women around the world have sought to unravel its inner depths and find the primeval source of inspiration, the mythical cornucopia filled with the sweet and ripe fruits of fantasy.
Sebastian Boyd was one of those persons, a man in his late twenties fascinated with everything pertaining the creative process as a whole, from the moment the first glimpse of a thought was brought to life inside the brain to the deciding act of embodying it in a sheet of paper, under the weight of grammar and syntactic rules that ultimately fashioned its final meaning. This attraction was what defined him mostly as an individual and, as such, writing was something he treasured with all his heart, something for which he was willing to go the extra mile if that meant having the pleasure of reuniting himself with its supernatural grasp.
That had been the reason why, on one of those impulses that can turn one’s life upside down, that he had quit his boring job at a law firm, only to go to the bank and empty his account, afterwards. The money wasn’t much, but enough for him to go the nearest marina and fulfil another dream of his. On the very same day, he bought himself a boathouse and spent the following days moving all of the things he really needed and getting rid of the rest at a garage sale that gave him a couple more means of sustenance.
His new place – which he mentally baptized as “Muse” – was to be his private, artistic sanctuary, where he would be finally allowed to give in to all the words he had accumulated throughout the years and make something ambitiously real out of them. Because he was a bit old-fashioned in that regard, he preferred the pen and the paper to the keyboard of a type-writer or a computer, for the words written in them were standardized and didn’t have his own personal touch. One day, when everything was already acceptable all around, he opened up his mind and began writing.
The first words and sentences he produced were a garbled, unintelligible mess, surrealistic structures that whirled and dissolved in front of his eyes as if they had sprung from an intellect that was beyond the boundaries of human understanding. Sebastian wrote them almost feverishly, looking for that precise instant where a shred of logic would reveal itself to harmonize the whole enterprise, but that moment never came and an ominous feeling descended upon him as he went to bed, just about ready to burst into tears.
After a couple of days, the initial frenzy of rampaging prose slowly began to give way to a more rhythmic approach, almost as if a veil had been lifted and he was now finally able to see glimpses of true sunlight and not just shadows reflected upon a wall. His left hand grabbed the black pen with care and devotion as the sheets of paper eagerly embraced the emotions he had to share. There was genuine might in them, even if some of it wasn’t still entirely clear.
Sebastian began writing a story that featured a woman as main protagonist. She was very beautiful, with dark-brown, cascading curly hair, hazel eyes and statuesque figure, dressed in a purple, empire waist mini dress and wearing a golden armband and headband alongside matching lace-up small platform high heels sandals. Everything about her had a divine aura of sorts and the more he wrote, the more he realized how much that was true.
In the tale, she was a real Muse, and not some cheap imitation of one. She had the ability to inflate other people’s hearts with all the right sensations required to create a masterpiece of story-telling and was willing to help a wannabe writer who, strangely enough, was very much like his real self, to do just that. However, unlike the tales of old where such services were given out for free just to spread the joy of art amidst the human world, her assistance came with a small fee, a symbolic price. Naturally, he wanted to know more.
“What is it that you want?” wrote Sebastian at the end of a sheet of paper and then, watched in utter fascination, his hand move delicately to the next one and reply in a letter that wasn’t really his own.
“ Just a little bit of pleasure….” and suddenly, he felt an invisible pair of hands rubbing his temples and then his shoulders in a sensual, seductive way.
“I’m not sure I understand.”
“ Of course you do, but you seem to be having a little trouble admitting it. Are you shy, Sebastian? Is that what’s bothering you?” the invisible touch became more pronounced, phantom fingers tracing outlines of forbidden words in his back and then descending ever so gently onto nether regions of delight.
“I….” the words he was about to write faded into nothingness when he felt a squeeze in his genitalia and other parts of his anatomy awakened in a fervent wave of desire.
“ If this feels good, just imagine what may follow….” continued the disembodied voice, this time echoing inside his mind and not reflected upon the paper. “ Do you want to experience it, Sebastian? Do you want the honour of divine satisfaction?” Another squeeze followed. This one was tighter and much more revealing of the holy lust that drove it.
He trembled in his chair as the crescent arousal spread to every region of his body, an electric current of ecstasy about to be unleashed. It reached his brain in a flash, causing all of the primary functions to go into overdrive. With great difficulty, he managed to write down another question:
“W-what do… I need to do?”
“ Just give in to the bliss I’m about to share… Open your mind to the word that explains it all and write it down until that’s the only truth you recognize….
He heard the word booming inside, in-between a spectacle of quasi-orgasmic fireworks. His entire world was lit ablaze by the magnificent understanding encapsulated in a simple sequence of four letters and, before he even realized the fact, he was already adding to its power with rapid strokes of the pen. Soon, sheets upon sheets of white paper were consecrated to its splendour, his eyes registering each new entry, his aching voice repeating it in an endless loop. The word was:
Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey Obey…
Approximately an hour later, Sebastian dropped the pen and went down on his knees, completely overwhelmed by a need that was the only meaningful thing in his life. With his head low, almost touching the ground, he only caught a glimpse of a multihued glow ripping apart a hole in the fabric of Space and Time right next to him and then she appeared, the Muse of his story, as perfect as he had pictured her.
“You may look at me now, pet.” she purred, even though the softness of her voice carried along the overwhelming strength of a Queen’s command to one of her subjects.
Sebastian raised his head and basked in the supreme vision that had assumed a mortal guise in order to be properly pleased. However, nothing he had ever seen in the plane of imperfect beings could compare to such an enthralling manifestation of godly flesh.
“Now we’re going to have fun together, aren’t we?” she said rhetorically as she placed one of her sandals close to his lips. “Kiss!”
The writer contemplated the loveliness before him and bowed down in highest reverence to comply. However, and much to her surprise, he stopped mid-way, gave out a slightly sinister laugh and rapidly rose to his feet until the two of them were face to face. His eyes were completely black.
“Hmmm…” he said, tilting his head to the side as if mocking her divinity. “I think I prefer my kind of fun….”
He opened both of his hands, releasing a spiralling vortex of concentrated energy that hurled the Muse across the boathouse, pinning her against the farthest wall. Luminescent multi-dimensional tentacles became visible the moment the prey entered the web, slithering furiously across her arms, legs and waist and entangling her in an organic prison from which there was no possible escape. Above and below her, two circles with mystic symbols carved in silver and blood also materialized, its arcane power no longer restrained, but now flowing with ferocious intensity.
“Who are you?” The Muse asked, petrified in the face of such an abyssal strength.
The man walked towards her in a resolute pace, each step thundering on the wooden planks and sending indigo ripples of malice flying in every direction.
“You mean you haven’t guessed already?” he asked, visibly amused. “Perhaps, you’ll recognize me if I give you just a peek of my true form….”
Sebastian opened his mouth far and wide and the Muse saw a gigantic black hole on the inside, encircled by dozens upon dozens of blood-thirsty red eyes. A putrid breath billowed in the space between them and then it was gone, just like the horrific image of immemorial times.
“That’s impossible!” she squealed. “You can’t be real!”
“Oh, but I am…. I’m The Unbreakable, Hunter, Judge of all unauthorized divine interventions across the multiple strings of cosmic reality. I’m the Supreme Bogeyman that terrorizes all superior beings who try to take advantage of their heritage to their own personal benefit, and you my dear… oh, you’re so guilty of that, aren’t you? It was fun to let you believe that your seduction tricks were working like a charm, when in fact you were just wasting precious mental energy on something you could never hope to achieve.” He was now only a few feet away from her, looking with amusement to the intertwined enchantments that could turn a god-like creature into a powerless captive.
“So there was never any Sebastian Boyd?” she asked, whilst trying to force the magical chains, yet to no avail.
The Unbreakable waved a hand rather disdainfully.
“I wouldn’t say that. He’s very real and he screams from time to time inside this suit of flesh, waiting desperately to be heard. I captured him soon after he moved to this place, to prepare a trap for you. For you see, the rumours that one of The Muses was using her talents to enslave the ones she was meant to inspire were becoming more and more frequent and, naturally, such a violation of the rules of interference couldn’t be tolerated!”
“You’re possessing a human!” she spat. “Aren’t you breaking the rules of interference yourself?”
“I would be if my very nature wasn’t above them all. I have to be in order to oversee all of the known and unknown dimensions!”
“And who oversees you?” continued the Muse, aware that she was in grave danger, but not willing to go down without making her points very clear.
The Unbreakable leaned against her, unaffected by the incantations for he had been the one to create them and the tip of his dirty tongue played around both of her ear lobes at the same time.
“No one….” he smirked. “That’s the beauty of it all! Now, you Muses look pretty much all the same to me so be a sweetheart and tell me your name, will you?”
In response, she spat again, straight into his cheeks and lips. Her defiance wouldn’t go unpunished and she knew it, but it sure felt good!
The Unbreakable looked at her with the two pools of darkness that stood where a pair of obedient eyes should have resided if things had gone according to plan. The corners of his mouth writhed and he hissed:
“Well, I did try to ask politely, but since that didn’t do the trick, I guess I’ll have to resort to more ingenious ways to get what I want. You know, it’s my understanding that you really shouldn’t have assumed the human form at all in order to satisfy your desires because, doing that, exposed you to the weaknesses of these filthy cockroaches. Now, what shall it be? Pleasure? Pain? Perhaps a bit of both….”
He moved a finger in the air, and her dress came undone, shredded into thousand little pieces, as if a dozen gargantuan claws had decided to make it its new plaything. Then, he blew a single breath of decaying air onto her pieces of jewellery, turning them into dirty, brown crystals that shattered instantly. The sandals were the only thing left, as he happened to find the model somewhat attractive, especially the parts that were wrapped around her long and winding legs.
He stretched out toward her, and she watched in horror as the mass of soft tissue known as skin began to deliquesce in front of her eyes, his fingers and arms assuming the same chemical composition as the tentacled organs that kept her helplessly bound.
One set of tentacles reached out to hold her face, stroking her cheeks, caressing her neck and frolicking senselessly with the curls of her hair. The other wavering limb went lower, its swollen protuberances undulating through the crown of pubescent hairs at her groin to reach her dampening sex. There, each of his long, squirming digits pressed and teased with such diabolical precision that soon the despair within her was blinded by pure, soaked arousal, so that when the Unbreakable finally thrust inside her she was consumed by a swift and impossible orgasm, an overwhelming pleasure inwrought with filaments of bittersweet anguish.
“Let’s try this again, shall we? Tell me your name!” ordered the dreadful executioner.
“Achelois….” she responded, suspended in the limbo between joy and misery as he kept wriggling like a vicious snake within her. “My name… is Achelois!”
“Seriously?!!!” he asked in disbelief, eyebrows twitching. “Oh, you poor thing! I can’t even begin to imagine what’s it like having to deal with the burden of such an outdated and utterly preposterous moniker!” and then he laughed real hard of his own outrageous joke.
“It’s way better than a stupid title like ‘The Unbreakable’!” Achelois retorted. She was about to ready to spit again when the tentacle over her head descended upon her mouth and hushed her.
“I admire your courage, Muse. I really do! Not many would be so bold to try to upset me even more than what I already am! The thing is: you’re in my court, now and when things aren’t to my liking inside it, I change them until they do. And it so happens that I simply loathe your name!”
She bit the tip of the tentacle catching him off-guard and yelled:
“This isn’t a court at all, but rather the playground of a mad! I don’t recognize your authority over me or any other living creature in the multiverse and I never will!”
“You’re wrong!” he towered against her, his shadow becoming that of an abomination riddled with heads and teeth everywhere. “You will respond to my justice, for I’m the ultimate scale of what’s deemed right or wrong! From now on, Achelois is no more! You’ll be known as ‘Anna’, a name I’ve always admired! Do you know its meaning? Both in Hebrew and Latin, it stands for Grace and the thing I like most about Grace is the act of defiling it! That’s what I’ll do to you as punishment for your transgressions until I’m pleased!”
Achelois’ body was now the plaything of the Unbreakable. Each spot on her skin that might respond to pleasure was being pressed and stroked by a tentacled companion. Within her, the Unbreakable’s flesh throbbed and pulsated with such merciless care that she experienced rapture after rapture, every one both heavenly and soul-destroying, as with each shuddering orgasm the strength of her newly imposed name wiped out a little more of her previous one, until eventually only Anna was left, the Grace to be disgraced, the thrall to be born soon.
“And now, my dear, it’s time for you to learn the word you wanted so eagerly to teach poor Sebastian Boyd! Yes, because it’s only fair for one who sought the enslavement of another to suffer the same fate at the hands of a higher life form! That is my decree and it will be your sentence to be carried out immediately!”
A gust of wind was formed behind him, raising into the air all the manuscripts where the declaration of submission had been written. One by one, animated by an otherworldly liveliness, the letters detached themselves from the paper and gathered around him, a swarm of poisonous ink with a military purpose easy enough to be understood: complete obliteration.
“I’ve enjoyed our foreplay, Anna, but it’s time for the actual entertainment to begin!” he sniggered and turned his back on her.
It was at this precise moment that the army of a single word replicated a thousand times launched its devastating onslaught. Taking the shape of arrows and pointy needles, it pierced her flesh with ravenous fury, the ink exploding upon contact and taking every open pore by storm. It entered her bloodstream, darkening it whilst stopping its natural flow.
For a moment that lasted a lot more that can possibly be conceived in human time, she believed that her skin would become an extension of blackness, but that wasn’t the case. Instead, the ebony tint merged with her natural paleness, creating a hybrid blush of creepy, lifeless grey. In opposition to the rest of her body, the fingernails of both hands and toes lost all chromatic references, transformed into something that was pure nothingness and the same thing eventually happened to her eyes. The Muse of former radiant beauty was now nothing more than an undead drudge, deprived of any emotion or will.
Upon the completion of the process, The Unbreakable released her from his magical shackles, and watched with utmost satisfaction the way she crawled at him and uttered the most ravishing phrase he knew:
“Forever yours, Master!”
If her now blank eyes could still see a thing, she would have witnessed the gruesome minute it took the amoral creature to free itself from the sack of blood and bones that had been its host until that moment. She would have perceived the titanic depths that lived beyond the black hole and the circle of fumigant eyes: an everlasting extension of desecrated phantoms, fleeting leftovers of all the sentient beings he had judged and consumed ever since the beginning of Time.
Unable to do so, all she felt was the embrace of darkness as the boathouse and everything on the inside phased out of existence as if it had been an optical illusion from the start. As she fell deeper and deeper into the chasm where death meant life and servitude was an essential value to be upheld above all others, she knew that her condemnation was eternal. Though ultimately unfair, it was also unswerving and, worst of all, unbreakable.