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The Denaralan Way By Stephen Faulkner

Garrala followed Elsa’s slim, bright form up the darkened stairs to the young woman’s apartment, musing at how little the earthling girl understood of what was soon to transpire between them. From the time the first envoys of Denarala – that would have been Hakara and Nesor so many earth years ago – stepped out of their craft to become the first of their race to set foot on Terran soil, the earthlings had made immediate assumptions about their alien guests. Some were right, Garrala had learned, most were dead wrong.

Elsa turned on the light in the narrow hall so she could rummage in her handbag for the key to her apartment. The bright glare of the bare bulb at the oblique angle she stood to Garrala’s rising-from-the-stairwell height caused the shadow of blonde fuzz on her upper lip to glimmer damply. This, recalled the dark skinned Garrala, had been the first sign of arousal noticed – that of sight. Garrala recalled the warmth of Elsa’s hand as it pressed deeply into the alien’s supple burnished flesh. The quiet exhilaration of conducting the private conversation with a being from another world seemed to increase the earth girl’s seemingly frail strength almost tenfold. The heat of her hand and the pressure of the five fingers then, Garrala remembered as the girl found her key and turned it in its lock with a loud echo of clattering tumblers. The heat of the touch, the hint of salty perspiration transferring from her lined palm to the sensitive Denaralan skin; the second sing – that of touch and delight.

They had found a secluded alcove on the third floor of the newly instituted Denaralan Consulate while the party to welcome the members of the diplomatic mission from beyond the star system perimeter continued on the floors below them. Polite conversation there mixed with talks on trade negotiations and tourism rights; Russian caviar and French pate being served along with Denaralan kish brandy and hairy truffle balls. Garrala’s upstairs conversation with the frail, pretty Elsa lulled on past descriptions of Garrala’s homeworld with its juxtaposition of lush forests, expansive farmlands and sprawling habitats for the small world’s burgeoning population. The lulls grew wider until there was only silence and the electric heat between them like a moist, soft buffer. While Garrala considered whether the “signs” noted earlier might have been misinterpreted, Elsa’s unpremeditated kiss came as something of a shock. She did not understand its true meaning to a Denaralan as her tongue stimulated the sensors in their wet recesses beyond teeth and forward glottis. The signs were now very clear, Garrala realized; there had been no misinterpretation at all. Already the telltale fog was beginning to cover the Denaralan’s sight, removing accountability from both of their shoulders for what would inevitably happen next.

With one last burst of mental clarity Garrala had told her, this girl who was the daughter of the mayor of this pleasant Terran host city, what was known, what was certain. A coupling could be attempted, if that was truly her intention but, by Denaralan standards, there would necessarily have to be some changes for each to adapt to the possible physiological differences. Elsa, misunderstanding, giggled sweetly. Changes were fine with her, she said, as long as they weren’t too kinky.

In the fog brought on by sexual arousal that was as much as Garrala could offer before everything clamped down and became lost in the dreamstate of pure indulgent pleasure. Nothing more was said to dispel the earth girl’s misapprehension of Denarala sexuality.

They left the Consulate and the diplomatic party that was still winding its laconic way and their exit was not noticed. Elsa’s apartment was only four blocks and two turns away.

# # #

Garrala heard little of Elsa’s bantering descriptions of human anatomy, the functions and reasons for body parts as they undressed. The protuberant and slightly pendulous globes of smooth flesh used for suckling the newborn meant nothing to the alien. All that Garrala asked were the locations of areas of Elsa’s body that might best benefit from stimulation. She lay down on the bed smiling and offered one of those selfsame child-nourishers (breasts, she called them) as she groped in the general vicinity of the Denaralan’s bared, hairless crotch for signs, to her, that she was indeed desirable to her star-traveling lover.

She found the intricate folds of flesh that concealed the flaccid sheweef and a look of perturbment came across her smooth, lightly haired young face. “The taste,” said Garrala through a haze of abandon, “is what excites.” The Denaralan’s tongue, almost a twin to the hidden sheweef itself when erect though with many more sensor buds covering its long, tubular surface. Slithered over Elsa’s small breasts and pink nipples in search of more than the meager flavor of sweat and the cloying perfume that she wore. Elsa was moaning, her pleasures internalized, not evident to the sensitive tongue, the need fully swollen buds that rimmed and rowed the length and circumference. Kissing her deeply once again for a reminder that the signs had not been wrong or misleading, Garrala ran a four-fingered hand over the slender length of the girl, touching only damp and dry, nothing to corroborate the earlier testimony of sight, tongue and touch. Garrala was confused, the heavy mist of arousal already beginning to lift with the frustration felt. Then, Elsa took the wandering hand, guided it between her legs to the warm, lustfully sliding membrane there, covered with skin and hair. They hide it, thought Garrala, sliding the absorbent tongue hungrily to the spot to dig in the thick patch of blonde hair, find the gathering of richly flavored bodily relishes, all of them piquant and aromatic as a warm Denaralan forest breeze (Oh, those sinful days of youth in the rain moistened, woodsy air with your tongue extended to taste and savor the ambient signs like the fluids exuded from the very essence of a careful and attentive lover!) to lap and absorb the juices that were secreted from her depths as from a concealed spring. The tongue slid and, in its sliding, bumped and moved the malleable parts, found a thin, short button of hardened pink that, when nibbled by the opening in the Denaralan’s tongue, made the girl squeal and bounce her hips on the bed and cry out in spasms of hard breath and strangled voice. The tongue moved, out of control in its perseverance to find more of this heady and invigorating flavor and, with an instinctive lash and turn of its own, found the well of her keeping, the deep fount., the manufactory of her musky, lustful flavors that, with suckings through the tube of Garrala’s tongue, were tasted and held in the mouth and found fit and right. The last sign, the one of truth, was here. The message ran the ganglion paths through the tongue, mouth and neck, traveled at stellar speed to the ball of muscle that was Garrala’s sheweef, causing that muscle-tube of assimilative tissue to disengage from its concealing place to stand free from the Denaralan’s body.

Garrala crawled between the earth girl’s splayed legs, felt the rise and fall of the bellows of her breathing as the sheweef found its home and slid swiftly in to drink deep of her secretions, found good and nourishing the cast-off compounds her body produced only as lubrication and scent. Garrla’s age-old race memory cried out at the near insufficiency of the genetic materials the young woman’s body was offering but the internal complaint was soon stilled when the anterior vesicle behind the sheweef was slowly filled.

In a few moments, Elsa was unconscious and, as natural reflex demanded, Garrala pulled out of the girl before any real damage could be done. Through culture and evolution Garrala was decidedly one of the race of people of Denarala, this frightening aspect of love making was something that had always been difficult to fathom. “Why,” she thought as she lay resting beside her earthling lover. “Why must the male lose consciousness at the very moment that clarity returns?” Garrala looked at Elsa, the girl’s jaw under slung in her near-comatose sleep to open the small mouth in the shape of the “uh” vowel. Wistfully watching the girl’s even breathing, Garrala noted how much like the males of her own species – differences notwithstanding – these females of the Terran race seemed. Running a thick finger under the girl’s nose to gather the last of the perspiration drying in the light fuzz of Elsa’s incipient moustache, the Denaralan sighed. “Now that I can think clearly once again,” she whispered. “There would be so much that we would have had to say to one another. So much that I would have you know…. And which you probably would not want to hear.

# # #

Rumors of the incredible sexual prowess of the visitors from Denarala radiated through the diplomatic corps. Elsa, however, was not the original source of the stories that circulated about the dark skinned, four fingered race from across the galaxy. She was of an extremely discreet nature, given to keeping her own counsel. The singular occurrences leading up to and culminating in the orgasm received at the porous end of the Denaralan’s tongue were her own secrets to keep.  Add to this the fact that, after her climax, she remembered nothing of the coitus that she presumed had followed, her silence becomes even more understandable. The few times she saw Garrala later on she made no mention of their love making, not wanting to hurt the gentle Denaralan’s feelings with the admission of her apparent amnesia about the most important aspect of their time together.

The rumors that circulated came from other sources, other incidents, similar and dissimilar to the one which Elsa and Garrala had shared. Women spoke of the artful cunnilingus of the Denaralan “men,” of orgasms so intense that all senses were lost; men spoke of vaginas so vibratingly active and juicy that the man needed do nothing more than slip his pecker in and let the “girl’s” body do all the rest.

Garrala laughed when she heard that about Denaralan “women.” Those were the men of the species and that profusion of viscous juiciness was the stuff of their genetic offering to the sheweef to sip and absorb. What a backward place this is, she thought, where the females entice and receive the males, the males who possess the protuberant penis (the word rang falsely in her mind) which spits the seed of life rather than is used as a means to absorb that seed, the genetic soup of all reproductive possibility, into it.

Garrala lay on her bed in her room at the Consulate and placed her cumbersome four fingers to her abdomen, felt the almost gaseous rumblings of the new cells dividing and being created within her from the influx of Elsa’s vaginal discharges that the Denaralan’s sheweef had gathered. The four fingered hand snuck beneath the loose fitting cloth of her trousers to fiddle among the swirling folds of flesh to her crotch, then removed the hand when she was satisfied that the thickness of her sheweef had already shrunk to an imperceptible nodule in her body’s preparation for the birth of the growing child inside of her. Starting well, she contemplated approvingly; nature following its predestined course with clock like precision.

A gargling sounded behind her second navel and she smiled. Her interior sensitivities were sharp; she felt the child’s face forming nicely; the fingers where just beginning to grow away from the already well defined arm ends. It would be a boy, Garrala knew. Or, she mused giddily, a girl as the earth people would label it. Oh the strange wonders of the new world.

Suddenly a nerve twitched and her mind turned back to the fetus filling out its destiny in her womb. A definite movement there, a new, unexpected growth. The sensing mechanisms were clear, there was no mistake: a fifth finger on each tiny hand. “Earthling?” she asked the child within, listened with every nerve for an answer. “Are you to be an earthling, then? A Terran? If it is true, then what shall you be? A boy? A girl? Or some sort of strange hybrid freak?”

From deep within the Denaralan’s womb came a squeaking, querulous sound. “Oh my,” said Garrala, lying back to allow her mind to drift and fog in the third of her seven gestation cycles. “What will your father think?” she muttered, all sense leaving her as nature had devised it should be at this very moment. “My, oh my my my, oh what will she say?”

The mere mention of the female pronoun in association with the word father caused Garrala to shudder with the feeling of nature having gone irrevocably insane within her womb. Even her unborn child – whether male or female; even with her remarkably acute nervous system, she could no longer be certain which it would be – gave a mewling cry from within her that was most irregular for a fetus at such an early stage of development. Dread, that subtle blending of fears into one black, irresolvable ball – quite an extraordinary emotion for any Denaralan – began to crease pale shadows across Garrala’s richly colored brow.

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Strawberry Cheesecake By Charles E.J. Moulton

Julia’s strawberry cheesecake melted on my tongue and devoured me in bliss. Absolute bliss. The delicious purity of the berries mixed with a crispy crust brought back memories that had me swinging. I had not tasted something this good since I had been a child here back in Wicklow. Our mutual memories of childhood, sitting by the seaside and devouring her mom’s cake, watching that sun set, laughing at silly jokes until the stars came up: all of that came back in a spur of the moment. All of that joy lay imbedded in a strawberry cheesecake.

I looked up at Julia and smiled. She gently lay the spoonful of cake on her tongue and giggled. That splendid new hairdo fluttered in the Irish breeze, one swift lock of blondish red hair falling across her chest and landing on her bosom. The wind threw me a scent of sensual magnolia by the way of a perfumed memory of expensive eroticism.

“Julia?” I asked, seeing this woman in the light of the setting sun just where we had played so many years ago.

“Yes?” she mumbled, swallowing the bite of her seductively tasty cake.

“Why did we take so long to reacquaint?”

Julia looked up, the beauty of her brown reindeer eyes glittering in the light of that red candle. She shrugged, her flowery dress losing one ribbon and letting it drop down toward her breasts. I saw that woman’s beautiful Irish shoulder and compared it to the sound of the waves behind her. Wicklow, I thought to myself, thou art a memory recollected, a new life relived, a girlfriend well met.

“Will you marry me and give birth to my children?”

Julia stood up, laying her spoon aside, fixing me with that stare, grabbing a lock of her hair and gently putting it in her mouth. Circling the table, she ended up on my side and pushed aside all the other things that lay on it. Soon enough, her feminine scent turned more intense and I found myself actually wanting her more than I ever had wanted anyone in my entire life.

I stood up, embraced her face with my hands and tenderly, ever so tenderly, moved my lips in slow motion toward her mouth, seeing those cherry flavored lips moving nearer to my vision by the second. As we met, our lips and our hearts and our souls reacquainting, our eyes closed. I could still taste the strawberries on her mouth and smell the magnolia on her skin.

We breathed out through our nostrils, feeling the heat of our embracing bodies mingling and intertwining. I leaned over her, sweetly opening the buttons of her dress, one by one. Their soft cotton clad covered plastic textures were symbols of her soul. Beautiful and handcrafted, feminine and graceful. A white brasserie met my gaze under that dress, roses decorating the white bliss. I reached over to her shoulder and pulled down the straps, pulling them down a few inches below her bust, displaying openly what I could guess would be a healthy and lucious C-cup.

Time stood still as I, almost in slow motion, reached down and put her pink nipples in my mouth, circling them with my tongue. Julia threw her head backward, smiling, groaning, moaning, grabbing my head and caressing my hair. Inch by inch, centimetre by centimetre, I worked myself down toward the temple of her lust. With the gorgeously lustful sounds of the ocean waves against the Irish coast swooshing into my eardrums, I pulled down her soft cotton underpants and landed my tongue in her sweetly tasting vagina. Digging deeper and deeper into her body, I found myself actually filling my entire face with her juices. Her tasty clitoris reminded me of the salty air of the English coast or a delicious garlic paste that I had eaten down in the Provence.

Her juice literally dripping down off my face, I stood up again, grinning like a crazy man. While gently massaging her breasts, she sat up on her terrace table and rubbed my gender. She slid off the table with a horny thump like a seal sliding into the ocean from its home on the rocky hills of the German coast.

Julia went down on her knees now, waited patiently for my gender to swell some more. She knew that it ached to plop out and say: “Hello!”

Slowly raising her hands, those fantastic hands with red elegant fingernails, she opened her eyes wide, making a very indicative “Ooh!”-movement with her lips upon seeing what was waiting for her. Her one index finger grabbed the buckle of my belt and seductively felt how hard it was. As hard as my cock? That were her thoughts at that moment, I was sure of it. With a very spiritual and candescent looking grin, Julia opened my belt and pulled down my zipper with a sexy howling sound. When she finally pulled down my pants, the revelation of my erect penis inside those white drawers caused her to whimper. Ever so acutely, Julia pulled down my drawers and caused my six inch gender to literally catapult out of my pants almost into her face. It dangled there a bit befor she did anything. It seemed she was inspecting it like she would inspect a painting by Vermeer: as a work of art.

Her open mouth, pulled wide open by the pure awe inspired wonder of seeing my flagpole swaying in the wind, ejected a chuckle. With a happy moan, Julia took that erect penis into her mouth, hugging it with her lips and swallowing it inch by inch. I lifted spiritually into bliss, my soul literally rising to the heavens. My old girlfriend from Kindergarten, my school pal with whom I had played chess on this very porch, now knelt before me just feet away from where we had eaten ice cream and read comic books at age 9. Her closed eyes indicated her absolute recovery from her painful past, my erect cock in her prosperous mouth. Me, her first male friend. Me, her first painful loss at age 14. Me, her hopeful lover gone astray. Me, living years and years abroad. Me, getting a job in Ireland after a difficult divorce. Me, remembering her. Me, seeing her face in the local Irish paper. Me, here with Julia, living alone in her family’s old house by the coast. Me, here with Julia, another divorced soul. Us, happy at last.

In what would be a musical largo, Julia got up from her knees and gave me a kiss, her lips now tasting of precum mixed with strawberries. When she turned her flabbergasting ass toward my cock, I parted her butt cheeks and slid in my dick into the hot glory, at first very slowly pounding her butt and making those wonderfuls buns wobble, her hair blowing in the breeze, a couple fucking in the open Irish springtime.

When we accelerated, we lost our touch with reality and disappeared into ecstatic lust. The speed of our frenzy caught the wind and made our hearts fly. Soon enough, my explosive sperm caught the wind and shot its load into her fertile body.

I felt like flying.

We rested together for a while on her comfortable terrace chairs. When we were ready to look into each other’s eyes again, sweaty and lucious and relaxed and juices dripping off our bodies, naked Julia turned around and faced me.

“The answer to both of your questions is yes,” she smiled. “If we’re lucky, my body will accept your sperm and catapult it into the glory of my pregnant future.”

I smiled.

“Where do you want to marry me?”

“Here in my house on the terrace, where we just fucked. Where else?”

Naked, laughing, horny and hungry, we walked into the house again, brought out some ice cream, read comic books, played games all night and tickled ourselves to sleep just like old times. After we fucked for the sixth time that night, we made arrangements to turn our horny bliss into a nuptial paradise.

After all, we had a lot of matrimonial fucking to do.

Once our kids arrived, we couldn’t fuck outside any more.

So we did the only sensible thing, even when she was diagnosed as pregnant.

We made love in every possible corner of the house and my wife rarely needed to eat breakfast. She had all the protein she needed right in my fabulous and very explosive gender.

Ah, Irish bliss.

The Deep Cut At The Border Of A Lady’s Unconquered Lands By Roger Leatherwood

It was said that long journeys on the road were not made for women.

It was said because it had always been said, not because of prior failures but because no one had yet tested the hypothesis. That to travel across the lands, often through uncharted territories, often inhabited by unfriendly others, you needed more muscle. One on a journey needed thick skin.

Strength, the talk was around the fires and the trading posts. A willingness to expose themselves to danger and to the weather, to bath in fetid water and be impervious to insults and intemperate needling and the burning sun on their skin.

What they were really saying was, women were not made for the journeys.

But in the second year of Wasnicht, the Vice Knight (Clairn) and the Dark Knight (Koss) were sent to the boundaries of the empire where a wave of Huns was involved in seducing and appropriating small villages and villagers for their own purposes, increasing their number and resources for some unknown eventual violation. Or possibly they were just barbarian tax collectors, extorting money that wasn’t tied down.

Was there a true princess who could have motivated Knights Clairn and Koss to conquer and return draped in gold spoils, in lamé and glory? The fair daughter of the king, Melissa, might have sufficed but she had been shamed by a dalliance with a commoner during the spring festival a fortnight ago and been banished to a secret hut location. Her father didn’t want her showing her visage in public afraid she would be stoned or worse, and she was also fair with red hair, pale skin and a quiet way of speaking. She’d possibly give the wrong example to the knights, and probably not make the extent of the journey in one piece or unmolested if she became their mascot, not being – on the face of it and to the common wisdom – made for it.

This tale takes place in a land that doesn’t exist. Or rather, exists everywhere. It existed and its remnants remain in the secret creases of our own culture, in whispers and gestures hidden by the night and dreams that cloud reason. The king had to find another one to accompany Clairn and Koss, both rough and cocky and with hair growing in locations most men didn’t even know the names of. There was also a scribe, whose name is lost to us, he had to put his hands on for the trip.

Rules of science and atmospheric conditions shape and define the landscape, as a landscape defines the weather back by its specific traits. By the way it diverts wind and runs off the rain, flat expanses or fertile hills are encouraged or suppressed. How trees bloom and spread their seeds in bloom, spreading up a berm instead of down into a gully, thereby adding to a meadows windbreaks and the direction the paths of large mythical creatures and noblemen on quests pass through on their ramblings.

The king did not give the matter sufficient attention and sent Gwen, a female warrior who had dark strong arms and small breasts. Her hair was long on the sides and short across the top. She could split an oak stump with three well-positioned strokes in the main square on Boxing Day and wouldn’t attract the immediate ardor of the two knights – unless she chose to try. She could fight them off if she needed to win at checkers. It was expected the three warriors might have a gaming chance against the first wave of Huns at the border – and having a woman would confound them enough to make the first strike, although she would probably be the first to die.

Gwen followed behind, wrapped in leather and tinfoil and watching the two Knights as they led her on their steads, smelling the leavings of their mounts and the remnants of their boasts. Due to the rolling gate of Knight Clairn, who let his stead lead him rather than the other way around (the horse between his legs was large and stubborn and a bit deaf), and the amiable and lackluster Koss who had a tendency to mutter darkly to himself rather than speak up, they ended up travelling past a thick rivulet of white pasty water that ran along the narrows at Lowry’s Bridge, which was partially protected by the highest gaze of the noon sun. The path also ran along a forgotten glade where the hut in which Melissa had been hiding (in rags to cover her pale skin, and so as not to reveal her satin undergarments and thereby expose her regal dynasty). After unsolicited words were spoken and the blacksmith accidentally beheaded, she joined them on their journey to the boundaries. Which some would call coincidence.

Knights Clairn and Koss, along with the warrior Gwen and the disguised Lady Melissa (whom they suspected was of a higher station than she’d confessed and was as tantalizing to the knights as lemon custard was to a hungry bear) traveled east, encountering rumors of the invasions and poor pilgrims asking for alms.

This is a fairy tale and generally in fairy tales there are mythical creatures who serve as metaphor for unspoken fears. The mythical creature in this case is a witch. She had a power never witnessed and the people denied her existence, already fearful in the Wasnicht era although the land was cursed somehow anyway. While mortal men salted the creases of the earth the women stayed home exercising and worrying – then forging other relations with nearby farmers – then forgetting their men altogether.

The witch will not appear again in this story.

At night the air stayed warm and Clairn, Vice Knight and saddled with paperwork, tried to talk with Koss, who nursed his own dark mathematics in the psychotic recesses of his own personality. The task of keeping Melissa comfortable and safe fell to Gwen, who tucked and hid her away in her saddle blankets. When her hand brushed against Melissa’s red hair and swollen skin, she smiled and found herself becoming aroused.

“Do you want me to show you your place?” Melissa suggested, not flinching from her touch. “Your hand is familiar.”

“Accept my apology, my lady, as that is what I think you are,” Gwen said, “You are as bright and luminescent as the moon. There is something more bewitching to you than this noble quest we’re on.”

Melissa placed Gwen’s hand again on her chest and moved it down to the fleshy orbs in her blouse. Her nipples became stiff under Gwen’s fingertips.

She was quiet. The men talked at the other end of the clearing. Melissa confessed. “My father has sent you on the quest. Yes, the king is trying to protect his borders as he protects his shamed daughter, by keeping them as far away from him as possible. They frighten him.”

She nodded towards the Knights. Indeed, the Knights, already bold with drink, were growing stronger with each passing day. Gwen stayed downwind from them, but her monthly cycle had just ended and she was horny as hell.

Gwen pulled her straps aside and let the fabric wrapped up between her legs fall away. “They are watching,” Melissa warned, even as she moved to the left to get a better view.

“They don’t watch me. They only see my dark skin,” Gwen said, smiling. “My muscles. They’re afraid of what I hold beneath my armor. This foreign warrior.”

She put aside her axe, carved with a green flowery pattern that looked like tangled vines. And pulled her lips open with two fingers and showed Melissa the pink crevice hiding in her thatch, and already moistening. “Afraid of this.”

Melissa sighed. “Not at all like mine. Mine is so much sweeter. And round.” And she touched the button of Gwen’s strength, her feminine dynamite and with a wet wick, attempted to make her ignite like the ancient stories she’d been told in grade school.

Gwen had been handled roughly before and crawled in with the Lady Melissa. While she didn’t admit out loud that tangling with the daughter of the king made her much more horny, the transgression of the classes got her blood boiling and it was obvious her lust had overtaken her. She reached with an unskilled hand and tasted Melissa’s royal secret. Indeed it was sweeter, and pink as ginger. Gwen used a careful stroke and conquered the Lady in quiet aggression. Her flashpoint quivered in ecstasy, a fervor without violence.

Gwen breathed longingly and made the Lady unravel and arrive at a new plateau she’d never travelled to before with another person (her hand was skilled and her imagination was fueled by public exhibition). Certainly not with a woman.

And as Gwen’s ardor turned foolishly to Melissa and her future she wondered if Melissa’s favor would likewise rest with her. She began to plan how to distract and abandon the knights on their quest, to fine a new kingdom far from the rules and the eyes of Melissa’s patronage but such neat plot contrivances were not to shorten this tale.

Lady Melissa would not demonstrate any preference, as she knew the dynamics of group politics better than Gwen ever would. The next morning they travelled as before battling away ironic remarks from passing young princes and boys looking to gain favor in the crowded court of her love. Melissa rewarded Clairn with oral attention to his nether regions when he beat the interlopers away who were unaware of the importance of their journey and threatened to detain them. And she allowed the Dark Knight Koss, onanistic and anti-social, to watch her as she relieved herself in the fields, the only visual reward she was willing to relinquish upon him.

When Gwen unsheathed the sword of her fury Lady Melissa stayed her hand with excuses and promises. Her loins were otherwise not stirred.

The two men knew this and suspected perfidious collusion, but due to the lady’s attentions (whom they still didn’t realize yet was indeed a lady, not had the power within her grasp and between her legs to profoundly change their lives) they set out to impress her at the conclusion of the journey to the border. They hastened to cleave through the peasants and the bramble and inconvenience of their discomfort and fought among themselves rather than enjoying the ride.

The second night Gwen lay far from the rest at the river, keeping watch and jealously listening as the others apparently toyed with curiosity and with Melissa. Little did Gwen know that due to the uneven balance of power the two knights avoided personal contact with Melissa until they thought they’d have her for themselves. Why show each other their dicks? Later Melissa found her and took her sexually, kissing her stomach and kneading her breasts, fingering her ass and making her own hand slick with Gwen’s emissions for her own use.

Instead the next day, fueled by his own frustration Knight Clairn fucked a sheep found wandering in the thick briars of the berms that had been shaped by winds and the hard sunshine into tall creases of dirt.

The lady Melissa was expert at diverting attention, delivering them through the waves of barbarian tax collectors who surrounded the outer limits of the king’s property. At the milestone Melissa held back in her canvas bed dress while Gwen led the chevron of horse and men through the loose weave at the castle of the invader’s primary base.

Gwen looked cautiously up at the upper square battlements. They were swollen and pink in the sun, and she fully expecting to be struck down by some sharp arrow or fling of molten lava poured loose from fired cauldrons. But there was nothing there.

Indeed the castle was practically empty, more for bravado than an actual working bastion of power. Distant and out of sight except to those who were right upon it, its masculine intimidation was all a show.

The Huns, a tough and tendonous group so dug in and comfortable they refused to leave or let any messengers with royal missives return with responses, held firm and waited, a defensive game inviting the Knights Clairn and Koss to finally demonstrate their acumen and battle sense.

They took the empty castle with aplomb and Gwen, waiting and bleeding and cautious, contributed nothing to the storming.

It was Lady Melissa who egged them on. When she was out of eggs she used ripe beets and allspice, thick on the ground in the cold climate of these parts.

Gwen hacked at the cables by which the power traveled to their radio instruments and cutting tools. Our Knights, befitting their training and foresight, went chopping heads off every Hun and whore unfortunate enough to have not escaped around the back to circle around.

And indeed, Melissa watched them as they hacked deeper into the morass of their own downfall. Beholden, aglow, she said nothing and raised no weapon but her gaze. The Huns at the watch recognized her for the distraction she was and advanced on the two knights instead.

They were less in arms but greater in number. Gwen tangled in sparks and wire then stood behind Lady Melissa and bid her to follow her, a display that caused the Knights to explode in a violent fury of the maelstrom of their enemies.

Koss saw the odds turning before Clairn did and eyed Gwen who had been his inadvertent guide for the last 99 lengths. At once he saw in her eyes, do not try to conquer and save this place, save her, save Melissa.

She was the bedrock, she was the emerald of the realm. It was time to escape to her.

She left it all to them. The message, though silent, was lost on Clairn.

Nothing if not stubborn, determined to go through to the back he was soon surrounded by mites with rags. Hairy and burdened by the heavy brown horse hanging between his legs, Clairn was tangled in his leather straps and his own arrogance. He pleaded with the Huns, now about ten in number, offering his waterskin, his mount, even Gwen. They laughed and banished him to the deepest cut of the pool, counting the bubbles as they rose above his submerged head.

Koss, the Dark Knight, was equally as unlucky. Ignoring the next advice from Gwen, which was run like hell, he became victim to his own rage, smiting all who stood in his way in a fit of pique, including two Huns, a ragman’s second wife, a basket of garden gnomes, the latest addition to the bookbinding guild, a fishmonger and a stuck pig who spilled his dirty blood across the edges of their own best cornfields.

This was in vain. Angered and vowing revenge, the barbarian tax collectors trapped him in debt and placed lien after lien upon his chest and buttocks until he was unable to breath and could no longer turn around without tightening them with every move, and he was finally bled dry.

Gwen, smart and quiet and looking more like a boy than a warrior, survived and waited patiently beside the white brook until Melissa had quelled the rest of the Huns’ energies. She emerged having not revealed her royal lineage, only her determination to be unmoved by any bodily insults.

“My lady, you survived.”

“And you did too.” Lady Melissa looked down at Gwen’s torso. The blood on her biceps were not her own.

“I knew you were the prize,” Gwen whispered. The love in her eyes, foreign but sincere, reached the Lady.

“You gave up your maidenhood for you.”

“No sacrifice is worth that value which others place on it.”

Gwen fell into embarrassment, standing half a league from empty castle, run from the clutch of the Knights’ darkest need.

“Gwen, you look exhausted.”

Gwen nodded. She was angry, and spent. And afraid she’d lost the favor of Melissa before she had a chance to consummate their love outside of duty. Her tone telegraphed that to the lady.

“Have no fear, Gwen,” the lady said, wiping the blood and spittle from her own cheeks. “You acted as you had to act. You took the rear, for were there no more intrusions upon us while you stood by this brook and didn’t fight a battle you could not contribute to?”

That was the case. And Gwen let Melissa understand she was only a poor warrior dark of skin and unfamiliar with books. She had wanted to run like hell because she was afraid.

Lady Melissa didn’t even want the outskirts of her father’s kingdom and craved to return to the center of civilization. She felt, in some unconscious need, that knowing there was no threat at the edges allowed her to appreciate and enjoy life in the civilized and more cultured center of commerce.

And while Gwen followed behind her, it actually was Gwen who talked her into the decision and while trailing and asking questions, she was the one who took charge with looks and gestures.

Melissa set up Gwen in her adjunct kingdom as her personal stewardess, to caress and minster to her skin care and the braiding of her private hair. Installed like a concubine, rumors in the palace were rife that Melissa had taken Gwen as her lover, a strong and quiet supplication of the dark manly warrior.

But in truth it was Gwen who had taken Melissa as her own. The soft flesh and the careful manner of the Lady Melissa carbonated Gwen’s hormones the way no man, muscle or rapist ever had. Gwen had found the secret to her other side, the seductive pull of being able to possess that which could not entirely be tamed and which, at the same time, wanted to submit.

And through the years, because of superstitions of class and propriety, Gwen couldn’t have had access to the royal purse strings otherwise.

Gwen lived in the highest splendor available to her within the land, and was kept from the sight of the fishmongers and the courtswomen who would have cast disparaging eyes upon her, even when she hid her skin behind cloaks and her small breasts in a leather truss.

But in Lady Melissa’s embrace she didn’t hide. The castle opened up at the ceiling to a bright sky and stars that twinkled and formed into new constellations whispering uncharted futures. Gwen discarded her leather straplets for good, letting the children of the realm cut them into friendship bracelets.

Wasnicht continued for another decade. Gwen breathed in the perfume of Melissa’s exploitation and slept among the velvet sigh of her thighs. It was a sleep without dreams.

 

 

Grey By Caitlin Hoffman

“This is the last time,” I insist, and yet even as I speak, I don’t believe the words. Our skin is inches from brushing too close, our mouths seconds away from crossing that line, and neither of us care.

“Isn’t that what you said the night before?” you whisper, trying not to smile. The thrum from my fingertips is holding you hostage, making you ready to pounce.

“I have to go. Right now.”

“The same with me. We have to walk away from this.”

We fall into a kiss instead, a kiss that slaughters all of the finer parts of ourselves. I love the way you destroy all my sensibilities and always leave me craving more. Your hands are travelling too far already, and I have to shove you off.

“No, none of that. Kissing… kissing is enough. It’s not too much. Anything more than that…”

We don’t listen to my words. We tumble in again. The air, once so cold, is already hot enough to make our hair sweat. Your hands go in my ponytail, toying with the band that keeps it all together. Soon it’s falling loose on my shoulder, and then your fingers are playing with the rim of my shirt, daring to go further. I push back against you, clawing onto your hips, hoping to hurt you and scare you away. All it does is make you kiss deeper, make you hold harder, make you moan louder. It’s so dangerous, what we’re doing here. We can’t help ourselves.

A light from a passing car causes us to shirk in terror. I cover my face and as much of my skin as I can with my coat, hoping the light won’t reveal me for what I am. The car passes, the threat subsides, and we find our way into a dim-lit kiss once more, this time completely out of sight and off the road.

“We need to be more careful.” you hiss between breaths, fingers teasing the edge of my skirt. I lurch forward and pull you into me, sure to gyrate my hips against your own.

“Isn’t that what you said before?” I whisper back, finding that the crook of your neck is the perfect place for my tongue. I can feel those nerves of yours screaming underneath, throbbing right into your organs below. The release will come soon, but I want to linger as long as possible. The danger works as an aphrodisiac, making each kiss that much more inflamed. We are engulfed by our desire; it doesn’t matter what society says.

Not for now, at least.

“I should go.” these words come to me in a rush as I suddenly remember what street we’re on and what neighbourhood we’re in, and how much trouble would come to the both of us if we were caught here together. You shush me hurriedly, guiding my hand to the bulge in your pants, trying so hard to ignore the fact that we are so wrong together.

“Stay, just long enough for me to feel you.”

“We can’t…”

“We have to.”

“You have a wife at home. A wife that isn’t coloured.”

“Don’t talk about her, please.”

“But…”

You stop me with another kiss and a hand that presses directly against my mound. At the sudden breach of intimacy I gasp, every nerve paying far too much attention to where you’re going to put your fingers. My wetness is not secret anymore; it’s smothered on your palm. You rub, first slow, then fast enough to weaken my knees. Intoxicated by every grip we hold on each other, I let myself give in. After all, forgiveness is no good if you don’t sin first.

I grab back and rub on your jeans, feeling you harden underneath. You’re so thick, so sturdy, so potent in your want for me. There’s no hiding from each other anymore. Then comes the lurch of your zipper, and the spring of your erection now free in the palm of my hand. The slap makes us both ache, longing to cut out all the cold in our world and leave nothing but this sizzling eruption of our love. Is this love? We don’t care. All we know is we need each other, despite the world.

I slam you against the wall, unleashing the rawness in me you always say you adore. You always used to tell me that no women in your own circles was so honest about wants and needs. You always said I was the only person you felt comfortable around. Despite my colour. Despite my race. Despite the rules that choke our society.

I’d be lynched if they found me kissing you. And you’d be disgraced.

“Oh, harder, tighter…” you instruct, your thick, creamy accent melting me more between the legs. I’m numb now, deranged and trickling, mewing like a cat for you to slam into me. For now, you only give me your fingers, slipping a few in even though your penis is inches away from my entrance and its throbbing, soaked juices. Everything is clenched, tight, ripe for the picking, but you don’t yet dare to cross that line. We’re in arrest, waiting for the other shoe to drop, waiting for the forbidden fruit to slip off the vine and smother us in delicious, sticky sweetness.

I can only imagine how beautiful we look, surrendered to the dark and the motion in our arms, our tongues entwined with a delicate, translucent force, our bodies moving to the same indecipherable rhythm that has haunted humans since the beginning of time. I always thought the meeting of flesh to be a beautiful thing. Sacred, sanctioned, a gateway to serenity. Ever since my lust crossed the train tracks, however, I have thought of it as nothing but sordid. We do not exchange poetry, but sin. And neither of us care.

“Please, come into me. Before I have to leave.”

You obey, instantly, slipping in while I guide you with my hand. Despite my arousal, I’m still tight, and you force your way in with a lustful precision that makes my head swoon. I love the way you jerk your hips to get it all the way in, to explore me with every inch you’ve been given. I clench tighter and move myself against the wall for support, wrapping one leg around your waist so you can hold on and dive deep. Your moans are too much for me. I slap both hands onto your neck, putting us nose to nose, daring you to keep staring. You can’t meet my eyes for too long, afraid of the intensity within, so instead you put your lips on me, accentuating the wetness below. We rock, and my back is scratching against the brick but I don’t care. I can’t care about anything but the fact that you’re in me. So deep in me, deeper than any other man has been. Do you understand what you do to me in these moments, when we’re rocking back and forth tasting each other’s skin? Do you know that in the nights we can’t meet I rock against my hand, trying to reinvent the cataclysmic bliss in your touch? Do you have any idea that no matter how many men of my own neighbourhood I use to pass the time, not one of them compare to your bright, blonde hair and steamy, blue eyes? Yours is a soul whose colours do not compare. Nothing and no one can distract me from the fact that every minute without you is a minute closer to hell.

“I want this to last forever.” you say.

The quickening in your thrusts and trembling in your abdomen show me that you’re trying to slow your own orgasmic climb down, for the sake of us staying together as long as possible. Despite myself, I take one hand and put it around the base of your cock, squeezing just a little to tempt you with more pressure. You knock your head back, cursing. Your balls tighten up and you spasm, lurching, spraying, fucking me with such intensity as you come that my clit begins to scream in need of its own separate release. That little bulb above my vulva is so sensitive that as you pull out and spill your remaining milk against my skin, the shot of you almost makes me fall into my own peak. Just almost.

You collapse on me, and even though you weigh at least forty pounds more, with your thick farmer arms and runner’s legs, I still manage to hold you up. In my arms, you feel so very much like a child, a child fearsome of his own wants, dreams and insecurities. I know then that you’ll never be as free as me. For, no matter how many times we meet, it’s always in your neighbourhood, not mine.

“This should be the last time.” you say suddenly, as you get a grip on reality again.

I readjust my skirt, not caring about the fact that the stain won’t wash out this time.

“Is that so, my love?”

“We’re kidding ourselves, aren’t we?”

I stick my tongue onto the back of my teeth, not wanting to admit the truth. My mouth betrays me.

“Yes, we are.”

“We’ll never live in a world where this is okay. You and me, together. White and black.”

I blush, but thankfully it’s still dark enough outside so that you won’t notice. My hair is tangled and soppy from our sex, and I curl it about my fingers.

“You’re off then, Mr. Madison?”

It breaks me, the way you fix your tie and zip up your jeans, all without looking at me.

“Indeed I am, Margaret-May.”

The heat from my legs is fading now. The swell itself has receded. All that is left is a tingle in my lips, and the determined pulse of my clitoris.

“Same time tomorrow?” I say, a wry smile played upon my lips.

You don’t answer as you skulk away, and I know that means yes.