This work is fiction. The work is presented under fair protection where applicable.

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         You should not read this if you are not of legal age where you reside. This work can contain rape, BDSM, cannibalism, and probably anything else my sick, twisted mind can come up with.







Chapter 50



         “Daria!” Gale eagerly pulled Andrew through a door and cupped her hands around her mouth to amplify her voice. “OUR TEST SUBJECT IS HERE!”


         The lights snapped on and Daria faded into view. “Oh, good.”


         “What are you going to do to me?” Andrew whined piteously. “I’m just a poor male, please don’t hurt me.”


         Daria grinned, her fangs in full relief. “Nice try. You’re going to feel this when we’re done with you today.”


         “Was worth a shot.” Andrew grumbled, yelping when something cold slid under his clothes and in an instant he was standing nude. “HEY! I liked that shirt!”


         “We’ll make you a new one.” Gale purred, tossing the shredded pieces to the side. “I have so many questions I want answered but I must start with a control. Daria?”


         The Vampire waved her hand, a large bench appearing between them. “Lay down.”


         Andrew nervously complied, gulping when Gale teased his cock on the way past. “Fear not doing it for you?”


         “It’s really not.”


         “We’ll need to get you relaxed at some point. Sexual endurance is one of the things we’ll be testing.”


         Andrew screwed his eyes shut when Gale produced what looked like some sort of clamp. “Oh god.”


         “Relax.” He cracked his eyes open to see her affixing it to his leg. “Put your other leg in the other side.”


         Andrew did so, testing the resistance. “This thing is heavy.”


         “Yup. I want you to try and open it.”


         “Why not test arm strength?”


         “We’ve already done that.” Gale replied. “Pull. Go.”


         Andrew heaved, turning his legs as he could to try and find a better angle. Eventually he gave up. “Can’t.”


         “Maybe not but you’re stronger than you were a few weeks ago.” Gale observed. “Now comes the comparison. I want to see the thing you were doing with Cristina.”


         “I haven’t tried to take that form yet. Not fully.”


         “Why not?” Daria asked curiously.


         “I don’t think it’s healthy.”


         Daria nodded. “Explain.”


         “Growing certain parts of my body or changing my appearance is one thing.” Andrew explained. “However when I was trying to return from my female form I had to really think of myself as this, what I am now. The ‘other’ form doesn’t require that. It just slips, I grow without thinking and I have to force it back to normal. I think that if I start acknowledging it as a normal thing, eventually it will become normal and I will have to focus to turn into a human again, instead of the other way around.”


         Daria was smiling. “You’ve been studying and practicing. This is good. The more you understand this magic the more you control it.”


         “You think I’m right?”


         “I think you’re exactly right.” Daria agreed. “This shadow is the closest you can probably get to your true form, your soul. That’s why you can just slip into it. When you reabsorbed the selkie skin your magic remembered how to shapeshift and it immediately tried to bring itself to what it thought was normal. But your mind doesn’t agree, and you forced it to return you to human. That is going to be what you and I train. Not changing your soul, but forcing your magic to accept that what your mind wants is what it wants as well.”


         “How are we supposed to do that?”


         Daria smirked. “By making your human form as close as possible to your soul.”


         “I don’t get it.”


         “Your deepest reflection is one of power.” Daria explained. “You were taller. Stronger. You held down a pokegirl that can lift metric tons without an issue. I would guess that you could run for a lot longer than you can now without tiring. Probably faster, too. Your magic is trying to give your body that power but your human one can’t handle it. Yet.”


         “You’re saying I need to train.”


         “A lot.”




         “For today, and only today, so that I can see how far you have to go, I want you to take that form.” Daria stepped back. “If you think you’re going too far, stop.”


         Andrew sighed but focused. Slowly the smoke began to waft as he grew, stretching over the bench until he was hanging off both ends. Abruptly his eyes snapped open and he screamed, the drifting smoke swirling angrily. “NO!”


         Daria held out her arm to stop Gale from running to him. It took another few seconds before he began to shrink back to normal and he lay panting.


         “You nearly messed up.” Daria observed.


         Andrew groaned. “I nearly let go.”


         “I’d say you about doubled in size.” Daria mused. “And if you could still keep going, that means you have a long, long way to go if you want to harness this power as a human.”


         “You’ll help?”


         Daria smiled at him. “Of course. Our first step is going to be sealing a bit of that away. Your glove should help, and we need to do it before training so that you don’t lose control accidentally and make something worse.”


         “I’m at your mercy.”


         Daria’s smile widened. “Excellent.”







         “Focus on my voice.” Daria folded his fingers into a fist and held them tightly. “Feel the pressure. This is your focal point. This is your focus. Through this point you will lock away the excess of your magic.”


         Andrew frowned, focusing on how his fingernails pressed into his palm. “Okay.”


         “Through this focus you have already created many things. One of these things is an armor spell. A spell that you keep active near indefinitely to protect yourself. This spell will now protect you from yourself, not simply the outside world.”


         Andrew controlled his breathing, allowing the idea of the spell to dominate his thoughts. “Okay.”


         “Imagine your armor as it hugs your body. Imagine now that it is not your body inside it but your magic, power, flowing into the shell. Flowing. Gushing. It is forceful, violently filling the shell but-,” she paused, “it stops. It has reached its limit. The shell holds it. The pressure is there and it is constant but the shell holds it steady. The shell does not bend. It does not swell. It remains the same shape. It remains your shape.” She watched as the spell under her fingers shifted at his thought. “Very good.”


         Andrew opened his eyes. “Thanks. With you controlling it like that it made it really easy.”


         Daria raised an eyebrow. “I was telling you how to visualize the magic, I wasn’t controlling it. You did that.”


         Andrew gazed at her. “I heard your voice and I also felt you weaving the spell with me.”


         “That wasn’t me.”


         They both glanced down at his still clenched fist. “Okay.” Andrew said with a levity he didn’t feel. “Hey there buddy. We all knew you were in there.”


         Daria looked back at him. “The spirit creature?”


         “Yea I think that’s what it was.” Andrew slowly opened his fist. “It hasn’t talked to me in a while.”


         “But it hasn’t gone away.”


         “I hadn’t considered how shapeshifting might hurt it.”


         “Well that’s something we get to worry about now.” Daria said quietly. “It helped you stabilize though. What else have you learned about it?”


         “I haven’t learned anything.” Andrew thought for a few moments. “Well, actually, maybe I have.”


         “Like what?”


         “When I went on my vision quest,” he said slowly, “I regained some memories. From the pieces of myself I was fighting. It remembered that the light had stayed even after it had been cast out.”


         “What in the world does that mean.”


         “I have no idea. I’m sure it was referring to Lyn but I don’t know exactly how.” He frowned to himself. “The light stayed to protect me when my shadow could not. That’s what it understood.”


         “But it’s talking to you. It’s sapient.”


         “Maybe. Or maybe it’s that other kind of magical item, where it just acts on my best interests.”


         “Either way it’s protecting you.” Daria stood. “Okay, step one done. Take the rest of the day off. Come back tomorrow and we’ll begin training.”







         Weeks later Andrew stepped into the forest, walking a few feet and waiting expectantly. A moment later Kuu rounded the bend with a mischievous smile. “What, I’m not allowed to surprise you any more?”


         “Please. You’re always hovering just out of sight seconds after I walk into the woods.” Andrew chuckled. “How’s it going?”


         “Very well.” Kuu fell in beside him, glancing around curiously. “You said you were bringing the staff. Where is it?”


         “I wonder.”


         Kuu’s eyes lit up. “You’ve figured out how to use it properly.”


         Andrew smiled, lifting his shirt to show her a small sheathe. “It’s a living weapon. I just had to get to know it well enough for it to work for me.”


         Kuu took his arm, dragging him to a halt. “You asked to learn about my bow today. Can yours become one too?”


         Andrew hesitated. “Maybe.”




         He silently drew the white knife, holding it out in front of him. After a moment the wood melted, growing out into a wicked recurve bow with a small quiver sticking out the side. “I’d say it can.”


         Kuu reached over her head and drew her own, comparing the two. “Yours is thicker.”


         “I have a stronger draw.”


         Kuu peered at him. “Is that so.”


         “I don’t mean that as an insult. A bow should be fit to each individual’s strength.” Andrew shifted when she continued staring. “I’m not suggesting I’m better because I draw more violently.”


         “I don’t think I’m telling you anything about my bow.” Kuu smiled. “I think you’re going to show me how you shoot and we’ll go from there.”




         “You’d better be prepared to prove you’re worthy of her gift.”


         “Hopefully you’ll be pleasantly surprised.” Andrew grumbled. “I used to shoot both guns and bows.”


         “Come with me.” Kuu led him down the path before abruptly turning and walking into the trees, which parted to let her and Andrew pass. After a few minutes she pointed. “Do you see the target?”


         Andrew glanced around them before looking down the narrow range she was pointing at. “I think so.”


         “This is the qualifying target for my patrols.” She raised her hand to point at a tree further in the distance. “That is the qualifying target for my guard.” Her finger drifted sideways a few inches. “And that is the one I use.”


         Andrew peered through the branches. “I can barely see the guard one. Where is yours?”


         “You’ll find it one day.”


         Andrew’s jaw set at the challenge and he affixed the quiver to his belt. “Give me three arrows before you judge me.”


         Kuu smiled, nocking an arrow and sending it whistling into the center of the guard target. “Touch my arrow and you’ll be worthy of training with that bow.”


         “I was hoping to talk business while I did this.” Andrew growled, selecting an arrow and nocking it to his string. “What happened with the farmers?”


         Kuu watched his arrow deflect off the side of the patrol target. “You missed.”


         “I said give me three before you judge.”


         Kuu glanced back at him. “My patrol made contact and got a better census. There are fifteen pokegirls and five humans. The other three are a Falcongentle, a Tigress, and a Minotaura. Also, one of the Milktits is actually another Minotaura. Found that out when the elf covering her suddenly got gored.”


         “Found the fighters.”


         “They were in hiding apparently.” Kuu watched him nock a new arrow. “Going to miss with that one too?”


         “Shut up.”


         The arrow thudded into the patrol target a few inches below the bullseye. “You hit it at least.”


         “You know, I told you my first few weren’t going to be good.” Andrew selected a third arrow. “So you made contact. What did they say?”


         “After it was explained who my elves were and who they represented two of the farmer’s elves got very excited.” Kuu chuckled. “Apparently they heard my call and knew who I was, but had decided not to leave their Master. That definitely helped earn the trust of the group.”


         “So we’ve got a good starting point.”


         “Unlike your form, it’s a solid position.”


         Andrew stopped checking his arrows to look at her. “You know what? I’m done with your attitude.” Kuu was smirking until he seamlessly nocked, drew, and fired the arrow directly into the fletching of her own.


         Her smirk vanished as the fragments shot off through the bushes. “You said the first three didn’t count.”


         “Oh I did. Oops.” Andrew replied sarcastically, putting another arrow to the string. “How about this one then.”


         The arrow flew off into the undergrowth and Kuu’s smirk returned. “It was a lucky shot. You missed this time.”


         “Did I?”


         Kuu stared at him before whirling. His arrow stuck just outside of the outer ring on her personal target and she stood dumbfounded until she felt him clap a hand against her back.


         “Technically I did.” He conceded. “So, my Queen? Am I worthy of my bow?”


         Kuu shook herself and hesitantly drew her own, staring out at her target. “I need to beat that.” Andrew chuckled, watching her slowly regain her composure before sending an arrow thudding into the inner ring. She sighed in relief and turned to him. “You have.”


         “You cheated. I didn’t.”


         Kuu scowled. “I used my abilities.”


         “Mmhmm. Maybe I should ask my bow to aim for me as well.” Andrew chuckled at her outrage. “Or maybe I got lucky. So the farmers have been contacted. Good. How about Drifa?”


         “She’s very nice.” Kuu replied. “Very easy to work with.”


         “It went well then.”


         “We’ve forged a mutual defense pact. Her emissary is respectful, too. She’s a rather excitable Yuki-Onna who served as an infiltrator during the war.”


         “Really?” Andrew frowned. “It’s interesting that she’s turned those skills to diplomacy.”


         “In a way.” Kuu laughed. “She’s really just here on vacation, but don’t tell Drifa that. I like Elisa.”


         “I won’t.” He nodded to himself. “So a mutual defense pact. How does that work? You’re on other sides of the continent.”


         “It’s more of a formality than anything.” Kuu replied. “If I need her I’ll send word and vice versa. If we’re in so much trouble we can’t send word, well, we weren’t got to be able to uphold the pact anyways.”


         “So what, you light up beacons?” Andrew snickered. “News from the north! The beacons are lit! Drifa calls for aid.”


         Kuu huffed. “You know I don’t understand your references.”


         “Yea, well, there’s a woman out there who will. And will appreciate them.” Andrew shot back but hesitated when a thought struck. “Wait. There is.”




         “Well... you know I’ve been going on... well, dates, with those Megami-Sama.”




         “Urd is as much a geek as I am.” He muttered. “She’s a wealth of pre-Sukebe pop culture. It’s honestly been really easy to be myself around her.”


         “Just her?”


         “She’s the one I get along best with, sure. But the others aren’t bad. Belldandy is a bit stuck up but she’s the leader of a giant organization, and I’m an outsider, so I understand. Skuld, funnily enough, is probably the most Celestial out of all of them. She’s just as holy as Bell tends to be but she doesn’t have the burdens of direct command to taint that. And that’s kind of really endearing.”


         Kuu laughed. “How? That means she’s stuck up just like Belldandy is. But worse. She’d be like Cristina gets when she’s honestly mad.”


         Andrew snickered. “I don’t know. I just find it cute when she’s acting outraged over the littlest things.” He grinned, poorly parroting Skuld’s voice. “You can’t simply do that! It must be done like this and only if that is done first, but never if this certain thing is not in place...” He shook his head. “She’s going to throw a fit when she realizes Cristina isn’t the perfect angel she acts in public.”


         “You’ve fallen for them and you refuse to admit it to yourself.” Kuu observed.


         “Maybe I have.”


         “Andrew.” Kuu smiled at him. “It’s obvious. You wouldn’t still be accepting their invitations if they weren’t ticking all the little boxes you have on that list of yours. They’re beautiful, sexy, smart, strong, influential, funny...” She trailed off. “You enjoy being with them. You aren’t even seeing them as strangers anymore. They’re friends, and I know very well how that’s the first step into your heart.”


         “You know you’re everything you just called them.” Andrew whispered teasingly. “But they are. I just don’t know if I want to have sex with them.”


         “What’s left to think about? I’m sure you fantasize about it. They want to make those fantasies a reality. Go for it.”


         “Probably not.” Andrew chuckled weakly. “Because some of those fantasies are pretty out there for a straight edge Megami.”


         “What makes you think they’re straight edge? Now you’re assuming stereotypes.” Kuu teased. “Have they invited you anywhere again?”


         “Yea, they’ve sent me a few more lists.”


         “So choose something.” Kuu gestured. “Choose Urd, and find something that’s more on the lover side of friendly. See a show together. Walk together in some park or something. Make a real date out of it, not just a friendly outing.”


         “I don’t know.”


         “Yes, you do.” Kuu replied firmly. “Do it, Andrew. It will make you happy. I’m happier when you are, so if you’re still hesitating, do it for me.”


         Andrew nodded slightly. “Right. Thanks.” He smiled at her. “I really love you, you know that?”


         Kuu kissed his lips. “I know. Even when I’m goading you into missing.”


         Andrew chuckled. “And you failed.”


         Kuu stuck her tongue out. “Yea. I did. Oh well.”


         “The last shot was completely by luck. I promise to train with my bow until I can match your skill.”


         Kuu smirked. “I’ll be training too. You won’t reach that point.”


         “Then I’ll be improving forever.”


         Kuu’s smirk softened into a genuine smile. “That’s the right answer. Go. Put the stick into stuck up Celestial.” She giggled when he groaned and turned back towards the path.


         Urd was chatting with her sisters when she received the alert and her face lit up. “He just asked me to the beach.”


         Belldandy and Skuld glanced at each other. “Just you?”


         “It’s the first time he’s asked one of us alone.” Urd expelled in an excited rush. “And to the beach no less. I’ll be in a swimsuit.”


         Belldandy shook her head in amusement. “You called him first, sister. I can’t be mad. Just don’t let him forget about us.”


         Urd shot to her feet. “I won’t. I think- Sisters I think this is our chance.” She took a deep breath to calm herself. “Ever since seeing Iain and Eve, and Lucifer, and the others... all of the males we met were nothing like that. I won’t ruin this for us. I can’t. It may be our only chance.”


         Skuld smiled, reaching out to grasp Urd’s hand. “Be yourself. That is who you have been until now and that is who he invited to spend a day with him. Yes, we will be anticipating every moment with bated breath but do not let that distract you.”


         “I will not.” Urd straightened. “I can do this. I can do this.”


         “You will do this.” Belldandy added with her own smile. “Go get him.”







         “Urd can teleport so she should be able to bring me back.” Andrew said, watching Lyn change into what could only be described as a g-string bikini. “You don’t have to come.”


         “You kidding? I’m not leaving you alone with a random pokegirl.” Lyn smirked. “She might drag you off and do terrible things to your body.”


         “This is supposed to be a real date. That kind of ending is sort of the point.”


         “Well I’m still going to be on hand if something goes wrong.” Lyn sniffed. “I’ll keep my distance.”


         “Fine.” He watched her pull a too tight white t-shirt over her naked breasts. “You do realize that every single other person there will be staring at you.”


         Lyn smiled. “That’s the point. That way they’re not staring at you.”


         “I think it’s because you’re a dirty exhibitionist.”


         Lyn winked. “Maybe.”


         “Can we get going? I don’t want to be late.”


         Lyn chuckled and took his hand. “I think you’ll like the beach. It’s a nice city, too.”


         “You’ve been?” Andrew blinked to adjust his eyes in the sudden sun. “When?”


         “Obviously I’ve been here or I couldn’t teleport.” Lyn snorted. “C’mon.”




         “I went a while back, when a couple of us took a day trip to tour the coast. This beach has this long structure that they’ve repaired that goes out really far into the ocean. It’s pretty cool.”


         “A pier?”


         “Yea, that’s what they called it.”


         Andrew looked around and focused on what appeared to be a changing room. “We’re already on the beach?”


         “The pier is that way,” Lyn pointed to their north, “and most people I’ve seen hang out nearby.”


         “Andrew!” Andrew turned at the call, smiling when he saw Urd jogging towards them in a beach dress. “Glad you made it. Who is this?”


         “Oh, you’ve never met Lyn. Lyn, this is Urd. Urd, this is Lyn. She’s my Archmage.”


         Lyn smiled, returning the hug Urd offered. “I’m his taxi. But I won’t keep you two, have fun!”


         Urd watched her walk away with a small smile. “She’s going to draw a lot of attention like that.”


         “Apparently that was the plan.” Andrew raised an eyebrow when Urd slipped her arm through his and began leading him down the beach. “Already set up?”


         Urd shrugged. “I didn’t bring much, but yes. It’s over there.” She pointed at where a small blanket was set out in the shade of a few trees. “I wanted to check out this pier they have first. I’m happy to see the area is pretty untouched.”


         Andrew looked around. “That or they rebuilt it well.”


         “No, I checked. This area wasn’t deemed strategically significant, so the most damage came from any bored water patrols who saw a soft target to use for target practice. Even the bridge to the mainland wasn’t destroyed.”


         Andrew frowned. “Checked? How?”


         “I asked the awareness.”


         “So you do know you can do that.”


         Urd giggled. “It was used heavily during the war by celestials. Of course I do.”


         “I’ve met some who thought it only gave and you couldn’t take.” Andrew slowed when he saw the pier. “Wow. That’s the biggest one I’ve ever seen.”


         Urd gazed at the towering pillars that continued out into the water. “It is pretty long.”


         “You want to walk the whole thing? It might take a while.”


         Urd laughed. “You know, I’ve seen it. I think that’s good enough.”


         Andrew chuckled. “I didn’t bring any fishing tackle either, so it would just be a walk.”


         “Maybe if we’re still here at sunset, we’ll walk it then.”


         Andrew glanced at her but Urd was watching the waves roll in. “Maybe.”


         She kept gazing out into the ocean for a minute before turning to him. “Want to swim?”


         “I’d love to.”


         “Excellent.” She gently pulled him back away from the water. “I need to do something first. You can help.”


         Andrew followed, watching her rummage through her bag and withdraw a small tube. “Oh, sunscreen?”


         “Mmhmm.” Urd unfastened her dress, letting it fall to the sand. Andrew swallowed convulsively when it revealed the bikini she was wearing underneath.


         The swimsuit was pure white and stood in brilliant contrast to her skin and lavender eyes. “Andrew?” He shook himself and took the tube from her. “Can you get my back?”


         “Um. Sure.”


         Urd lay on her stomach and stretched out, pulling her hair up as she did. “Try not to miss a spot. I don’t want to have to heal a sunburn. Those suck.”


         Andrew gulped but began spreading the lotion, faltering as he worked from her shoulders to where her bikini stretched across her back.


         “Oh, let me get that out of the way for you.” Urd called, casually reaching back and pulling the tie free.


         Andrew froze as the two ends fell to the sides of her body. She had to know what she was doing. Right?”


         “Andrew?” Urd craned her head to look at him. “Are you going to finish?”


         “R-right.” He quickly spread sunscreen over the rest of her back, running a quick swipe across her hips and falling back. “Done.”


         Urd carefully tied her bikini again and rolled over, sitting up with a sigh. “Thanks. I hate reaching back like that.” She smiled. “Want me to get yours?”




         Urd grabbed the sunscreen as he pulled his shirt off and turned around, waiting for her to start. Her hands were cold when she ran them over his back, the lotion quickly warming in the direct sunlight. It only took a minute for her to finish but it felt like an hour as she slowly worked her fingers down his body.


         “All done.” Urd called, squeezing a bit into her hands and handing the tube back to him. “So, how have you been? Anything new?”


         “A couple... things.” Andrew trailed off, watching her rub the sunscreen over her body. “Um. We might be starting a humanitarian effort soon.”


         Urd’s eyes lit up. “Really? Who for?”


         Andrew’s throat was dry and he swallowed, trying his best to ignore how Urd had begun covering her breasts, sometimes slipping her fingers under her bikini top. “The civilian population near where I live. The military is trying to starve them out.”


         Urd scowled. “The Leagues are a disease.”


         “I tend to agree.” Andrew pulled his attention down to his own body and began applying his sunscreen. “The problem is that I’m forced to watch out for ourselves first. Which has, so far, meant pacifying them.”


         “No longer?”


         “I’m tired of it, so no. If they figure out where I live and invade, well, we’ll fight as we run. I have no intention of letting them kill my family.”


         Urd nodded slightly. “That is as valiant as standing firm.”


         “I’m glad you think so. Most would call it cowardly.”


         “I am not most people. Retreating to save your family is not cowardice.”


         “Thank you.”


         “You’re welcome.” Urd surged to her feet. “Now. Swim?”


         Andrew grinned and scrambled to his. “Sure.”


         He tried to focus on the water and the things around them. He really did. There were only a handful of other people at the beach that day, easily more pokegirls than humans, and he tried to spend some time watching them as well as his own actions. But every few seconds he found himself staring at Urd as she cut through the waves. How she turned through the water, laughing as she swam circles around him. How he found himself laughing back, powering after the agile Megami until they were playing a game of cat and mouse, taking turns chasing the other through the rolling surf. Until he came up for air and noticed with surprise that the sun had begun to creep towards the horizon.


         “Tired?” Urd laughed, slipping up behind him and playfully tapping his side. “Do I win?”


         “I wasn’t aware we were competing.” Andrew replied, lunging at her and grinning when she avoided him. “No, I was just taking a break and noticed the sun’s setting.”


         Urd wiped the water from her eyes and looked out with him. “You’re right.”


         “How long have we been swimming?”


         “I don’t know.” Urd turned and began pushing back towards shore. “Are we going to the pier?”


         Andrew walked out after her. “I think that would be nice. I’m a bit hungry, but that can wait.”


         Urd stopped and pointed at her blanket. “What’s that?”


         Andrew peered at the small basket. “That wasn’t there before.” He slid closer, nudging the lid off with his foot before laughing. “It’s dinner. Lyn must have brought it.”


         Urd popped her head over his shoulder to look at the contents. “Sandwiches?”


         Andrew grabbed one and unwrapped the paper around it. “Not just sandwiches. These are Lyn’s sandwiches.” He chuckled, breaking one open to show her the fresh toppings. “She claims that everything is home made, but I’m pretty sure she doesn’t bake the bread. Other than that though, yes, it’s all freshly harvested.”


         Urd picked one up and peered at the contents. “What kind of sandwich is this?”


         “I think this is what she calls the ‘Taste of the Wild’ variety.” Andrew rewrapped his. “Two types of meat, wild spinach, tomato, and cucumber, all tossed in a spice blend she refuses to reveal.”


         “Where do you get these things?” Urd took an experimental bite and her eyes widened. “This is really good.”


         “Kuu provides all the vegetables and most of the meat.” Andrew replied. “She’s my ElfQueen.”


         “You have an ElfQueen on your side?” Andrew laughed at the face Urd was making as she tried to talk around the mouthful of sandwich. “And she hunts?”


         “Her court has a lot of pokegirls who eat meat. They send us the extra, which usually amounts to a couple of braces of rabbits.”


         “It’s very good.” Urd finally swallowed. “Are you going to eat?”


         “I eat pretty quickly.” Andrew replied with a smile. “I don’t usually talk while doing so, so I wanted to answer your questions.”


         Urd looked embarrassed. “Sorry. Do you want to eat as we walk?”


         Andrew nodded, taking her arm in his and digging in. Neither spoke for a few minutes, getting all the way up to the pier’s landing before Andrew finished his food and crumpled the wrapper. “Pretty good, huh.”


         Urd’s sandwich had disappeared long ago. “It was incredible. Does she cook often?”


         “I don’t know if I’d call a simple sandwich cooking, but yes, she does. She often cooks for the entire family.”


         Urd shook her head. “The meat was prepared and the vegetables were too. She cooked it and then arranged it as a sandwich.”


         “I’ll pass on the compliment to the chef, then.” Andrew chuckled.


         They walked quietly down the pier, separating at the end and both walking to the handrail. Urd gazed out at the sunset for a few minutes before speaking. “Thank you for spending this day with me.”


         Andrew nodded. “The same to you. I had a lot of fun.”


         She nodded to herself. “It was. It was really refreshing to be alone with someone who - someone who wanted to be with me for me. Not just because of what I do.”


         “Well, I think we’re friends now.” Andrew replied carefully. “And that’s how friends treat each other.”


         Urd turned to look at him. “I’m your friend?”


         “I believe so.”


         “That’s the first step, isn’t it?” Urd’s eyes captured him in their intensity. “On your list.”


         “It’s not the first step.” Andrew sighed. “It’s just the only required one.”


         Urd’s expression was unreadable. “You told us there was a long list of things before you would consider us as potential lovers. I know when I am lied to, and you did not lie then or now. Yet your statements contradict themselves. One item is not a long list.”


         Andrew gazed out over the ocean so as to avoid her eye. “Urd, I don’t casually have sex. That is the truth. And to you, and your sisters, I’m an answer to decades of sexual frustration. When you first met me that’s all I was, a means.” He finally turned to look at her. “Am I wrong?”


         Urd gazed back, her resolve wavering. “That’s not...” She jerked her eyes away from him. “That’s not what I think.”


         “Not anymore, right? Because I made sure to be clear with all of you. Yes, I might have stretched the truth slightly, but it was still the truth. I would much rather spend my time with women who I enjoy being with. I had no way of knowing if that was you until we had tried.” He frowned. “Are you aware of what bonds are? Between humans and pokegirls.”




         “If I had accepted your advances that day you would have started to form the Alpha bond. You would have started to feel the need to listen to me without having had this chance to actually get to know me and figure out whether or not you could trust me.”


         Urd turned back to him. “You did this for us?”


         “I do a lot of things for the women who are my friends.” He searched her eyes before he steeled himself and continued. “I do a lot more for the women who I love.”


         Urd stared at him. Slowly she leaned in and he did the same, gently pressing their lips together. The kiss stretched out for a few minutes before she pulled back, a solemn question in her eyes.


         “But you do not love us.”


         Andrew smiled at her. “Not yet.”


         “I should be honest as well.” Urd replied softly. “Yes, at first you were one of almost a dozen males we were watching, searching for someone we could be with. Lucifer, Iain’s Lucifer, gave us some advice about that, and we thought we had taken it to heart.” She gazed at him. “But we hadn’t, had we? I… we didn’t treat you kindly, at first. That was our biggest mistake. She warned us about how the wrong human would cripple us, and in our hubris we believed that meant we needed to find one who would not have the chance to hurt us.” She looked down. “That’s not what she meant at all, and these last few weeks I’ve learned that from you.”


         Andrew nodded. “I felt that at first. You were still very shut off from the world, weren’t you? I mean, how long ago did you have to learn about the betrayals?” He sighed at her silence. “Exactly. You weren’t ready for a new relationship. That’s why I was so insistent on taking it slow - I wanted to get to know the real you.”


         Urd suddenly blushed. “I think I need to confess something. You haven’t been on a date with me alone.”


         “I figured you were telling Belldandy and Skuld what was happening. I just didn’t know how.”


         “They’re cheering.” Urd mumbled in embarrassment. “Bell is urging me to pin you down right here so you can’t get away.”


         Andrew laughed. “I’m not going to run, Urd. If I was, Lyn would have already swept me away.”


         Urd looked around. “We’re alone.”


         “I’m a thought away.” Urd jumped when Lyn appeared next to them. She grinned and began rolling her arms. “I’ve been watching you two. I’m glad you liked my cooking.”


         “Lyn, you’re ruining the mood.” Andrew said with a smile. “Shoo.”


         “I don’t think Urd wants to have her first time be on a hard wooden floor.”


         Urd’s face was red and growing redder by the second. “I didn’t- I’m-“


         “We are enjoying the sunset.” Andrew replied firmly. “And talking. As I told you earlier, Urd can teleport just fine. If we want to find somewhere nicer to be we will.”


         “I’m not letting a pokegirl you haven’t even tamed yet take you off to a random location.” Lyn replied in his mind, her tone much sharper than his had been. “Cristina would tear a streak off my hide. And she’d be completely justified in doing so.


         Andrew blinked but nodded. “Sorry.” He muttered.


         “Andrew.” He turned to see Urd trembling, her hands clenching together. “There will be more sunsets. I want you. I want you now.”


         Lyn chuckled and reached out, grabbing both of them and teleporting into his bedroom. “Have fun.”


         Urd abruptly slammed her eyes shut when Lyn teleported away. “It can’t be just me.”


         Andrew nodded slightly. “I know.”


         The speed at which she teleported made it seem like Belldandy and Skuld had teleported to them instead and before he could breathe all three women were on top of him. Urd was first in his view, her lips seeking to continue their kiss from the beach and he let her, pushing his hands past the wall of soft flesh around him to wrap his arms around her. Skuld was fumbling to pull her bra off but Belldandy had appeared already nude and was wasting no time removing his own clothes from his body.


         Urd desperately kissed him, pushing at her bikini and managing to slide the bottoms to her thighs before he felt Belldandy drop his pants. He expected to feel her start to service his erection but instead felt a set of hands work past his legs and finish what Urd had started.


         They separated when Belldandy and Skuld each took hold of one of them, Skuld pulling Urd onto the bed while Belldandy wrapped her nude body up against Andrew’s back.


         “We’ve waited for so long.” Belldandy whispered, her hot breath tickling his ear. “She’s waited. Just for you.”


         Skuld had deposited Urd onto the mattress and she lay nervously, her hands drifting across the sheets from above her head to her sides and back up to where her bikini had slid to the side to reveal one breast. Andrew felt Belldandy push him towards her, her strength keeping him from doing much more than follow along. Skuld watched him approach, crawling forwards and spreading Urd’s glistening womanhood for him.


         “Urd.” Skuld glanced up at Andrew’s tone. “I don’t want to treat you like you are a prize I am being awarded.”


         Urd’s hands shot to her face and she covered her eyes. “I can’t move.” She squeaked. “I’m too nervous.”


         Andrew smiled at that, glancing back at Belldandy’s silent face. “You’re good sisters.”


         “You asked her to be with you today.” Skuld murmured, gently stroking Urd as she moaned. “We are only trying to honor that.”


         Urd cried out when he pushed Skuld away and took her place, running his fingers through her folds before bending down to kiss her trembling lips.


         Urd lowered her hands when he continued past her groin, slowly kissing his way up her stomach and chest before nuzzling her neck. “Are you always going to lie there like this?” He smiled playfully when she made a mortified squeak. “You almost had me at the beach. Maybe a massage is more your style.”


         Urd gasped when he penetrated her, moaning as he slowly slid in his full length. Behind him Skuld reached for Belldandy, the two keeping themselves occupied while they watched him pleasure Urd. By the time she was gasping for breath and Andrew was pulling out the only thing in their minds was their burning lust.


         He wasn’t sure which one grabbed at him but he knew that the next set of eyes begging for him belonged to Skuld. She screamed in pleasure when his dick slid into her pussy, the shaft still wet from Urd’s juices. He glanced up when Belldandy joined them, her lips seeking his and holding him in a passionate kiss.


         “I can wait.” She whispered, her voice cracking from her overflowing emotion. “You will need to rest after her, human as you are.”


         She blinked at his mischievous grin and squealed when his hands roughly groped her breasts. “Bell, I have spent the last two years of my life keeping dozens of pokegirls satisfied. It is going to take more than the three of you to wear me down.”


         Skuld screamed when she orgasmed and Belldandy’s cries changed when he immediately pulled from Skuld to her, almost slamming his rock hard erection into her. He acknowledged Skuld when she struggled up onto her hands and crawled towards him, checking for a moment to make sure Urd was alright before returning his attention to Belldandy.


         “How can the leader of the Celestial Alliance stoop so low? To be reduced to a pile of pleasure at the first sign of a man’s cock?” He growled in her ear, eyes lighting up when she moaned. “Oh, don’t tell me this is what you like.” He laughed when she grabbed him, crushing his mouth to hers. “There is someone here who is going to love meeting you.” He crooned once she let him up for air.


         Belldandy was surprisingly quiet when her own orgasm struck, her body trembling against his until she lay her head back and cried in satisfaction. Skuld had already mirrored Belldandy’s earlier position, eagerly taking her spot back when he pulled out. From there the time melted together, only flashes of purple, white, or yellow indicating to Andrew which sister was taking him at any one time.


         He only began to panic when the revelry alarm blared and none of them showed any sign of stopping.







         Andrew groaned, opening his eyes and looking around at the three women sprawled across his bed. “Anyone awake?”


         When none of them responded he turned his attention to the ceiling. “Cortney. You there?”


         “I am.”


         “What time is it?”


         “You continued until 1229 hours before the last one collapsed. It is currently 1631.”


         “Great, I got a whopping four hours of sleep after nearly twenty four spent having sex.”


         “They lasted about sixteen, actually.” The air shimmered and Cortney’s hologram appeared over the bed. “And four hours is a full night of sleep for you. Are you still tired?”


         Andrew sighed. “No. Have I been sleeping less?”


         “You have. Your average night’s rest only amounts to around three hours of actual sleep.”


         “I’m not going to pretend to know why. Add it to the list of things about me I no longer understand.” He started to get up but stopped when one of the Megami muttered in her sleep. “I just had an orgy with the leaders of this world’s Celestial Alliance. There’s got to be some Celestials somewhere having a fit.”


         Cortney smiled. “Did you, or did you give three women what they needed so desperately?”


         “Tell Cristina to stop using you as a mouthpiece and call a command meeting. Schedule it for 1800 and ask whoever is cooking tonight to make dinner a bit early.”


         Cortney nodded. “She agrees. Dinner will be ready by 1730.”


         “Not a ton of time to eat, but we can push the meeting back if necessary.” He sighed. “I should wake them up. How did everything go today while I was indisposed?”


         Cortney’s smile widened. “I think I’ll let Cristina tell you that.”




         “That is a suitable response.”


         Andrew gently smacked his head against his knees. “I’m dead. I’m dead. I’m so so dead.” He paused when he noticed Cortney had vanished and looked around to see Belldandy watching him. “Good afternoon.”


         She blinked. “Afternoon?”


         “You three kept going through the night and into the morning. Apparently you only stopped after noon. It’s the same day, so good afternoon.”


         Belldandy nodded. “I see.”


         “How are you feeling?”


         “Good.” Belldandy smiled at him. “I feel the love I saw within you and now it is being shared with me as well. It is... intoxicating. Part of me does not want to ever leave your side.”


         “There’s that Alpha bond starting in.” Andrew chuckled. “But you’re a strong woman. I know you’ll resist that temptation.”


         “What if I chose not to resist?”


         “I don’t think the Alliance would survive without you.” Andrew replied gently.


         Belldandy nodded ruefully. “Probably not. Knowing that you are here will have to suffice.”


         “You’re welcome to visit at any time.” Andrew nodded at the other two sleeping forms. “All of you.”


         “We are still visitors?” Belldandy asked curiously.


         Andrew winced. “Okay, I didn’t say that correctly. You’re welcome to come home at any time.”


         Belldandy’s eyes glistened and she almost looked like she was going to cry before she angrily turned away. “Thank you.”


         “Dinner is in about an hour and then I’ll introduce you to my command staff so you know who to look for when you’re here.” Andrew reached over and prodded Skuld, waiting for her to react before doing the same to Urd. “The shower is thorough that smaller door. I’m afraid I don’t have any clothes for any of you.”


         “We will manage.” Belldandy slid off the bed, snagging his hand as she did. “I do not know how to operate your shower. Why don’t you demonstrate for me?”


         Andrew chuckled and took the bait, leading her into the bathroom and drawing her into the shower. Silence fell for a few moments before their cries of pleasure roused the other two to join them.







         “Ladies, you’ve already met Cristina.” Andrew gestured around the table. “She wears many hats but her primary ones right now are as acting Alpha and as our training officer. To her right is Lyn, who you have met, Urd, followed by Kuu, and Gale. Gale and Lyn were your cooks for the evening.”


         “What did you call that?” Skuld asked curiously.


         “Shepherd’s Pie.” Gale replied. “It’s a nice filling meal.”


         “It was very good.” Urd laughed. “I have a feeling I’ll be saying that about every meal that you prepare.”


         “I sure hope so.” Lyn smiled. “I act as our logistics coordinator but cooking is definitely a pleasure of mine.”


         “Kuu, you are an ElfQueen, yes?” Urd asked curiously, continuing when she nodded. “I heard you have a court here.”


         “I do.” Kuu replied. “I command them as our home defense forces. When we show you around this evening, everything for a few dozen kilometers outside is my claimed land.”


         “You would have to be rather powerful to make that claim.” Belldandy observed.


         Kuu shrugged. “I don’t believe I am. Pride is the first step towards overconfidence and defeat.”


         Belldandy nodded. “Your wisdom is a much better measure of that strength.”


         “And I am our medic.” Gale finished. “And I suppose risk assessment. At least that’s what everyone keeps pestering me about.”


         Andrew chuckled. “You’re pretty good at that from your time with that mercenary.”


         “From what we’ve been discussing, I may be doing that again soon.”


         “Anyways,” Andrew looked at the Megami, “I want to be the first to formally welcome you to my family. What do you plan to do now?”


         Belldandy shared a look with her sisters. “We have duties to perform. But we also want desperately to be a part of our new family.”


         “What does your daily schedule look like?” Cristina asked curiously.


         “Usually we have meetings scattered through the day, and spend the nights planning the next.” Belldandy replied. “There is always so much to take care of.”


         “Don’t you have people to help take some of your duties?”


         Belldandy stiffened, all three Megami looking like Cristina’s question had instead been her sword in their chest. Finally Skuld replied. “We did.”


         “You said the plot had been in motion here as well.” Andrew said quietly. “I don’t know the full history of the Belldandy, Skuld, and Urd I read about, but I imagine the events were not pleasant.”


         “I had to make a decision as the leader of the Celestial Alliance that went against everything I personally hold dear.” Belldandy replied. “The actions I authorized will haunt me forever and have left a gaping wound in the leadership of the Alliance.”


         “But it has left the Alliance.” Andrew replied firmly. “It has not broken it nor has it tainted it. It has come, and it has passed. You three still live and you three still fight for what the Alliance should be. For what it always will be.”


         “We are still rebuilding.” Belldandy said quietly. “That is why we are so busy. Even the smallest of things seem to have been infected by what we were forced to purge.”


         “Do you need help with that?” Lyn shrugged when Belldandy looked at her questioningly. “You are my sister now, Belldandy. If we can help we will. We have a Videogirl here who would be able to sort through the clutter and hopefully order whatever you have left so you know what you need to replace.”


         “A Videogirl? One of the computer girls?” Belldandy asked in surprise. “I thought they had all gone into hiding after the war. You found one?”


         “You have to remember that most of us are from Four.” Lyn replied. “Cortney is from there as well.”


         “Oh, of course. Forgive me.” Belldandy turned to Andrew. “Is this offer correct?”


         “That’s Lyn’s decision, not mine.” Andrew replied. “I only step in when absolutely necessary and they keep me informed otherwise. Of course you’ll also have to ask Cortney. She is her own person, after all.”


         “Obviously.” Belldandy nodded. “That is an incredible gift. Thank you.”


         “We’ll have to figure out how she can coordinate with you, but we will make it happen.” Lyn replied. “Anything to give you some rest.”


         “There’s an easy way for her to coordinate.” Skuld breezed. “She should be able to talk with our twee just fine.”


         Andrew frowned. “Twee?”


         “Oh.” Skuld’s eyes widened. “Oops.”


         “Oops? Was this supposed to be some sort of secret thing?” Andrew looked mystified. “I know I’ve heard that word before but I have no idea what it is.”


         “It’s fine, Skuld.” Belldandy reached over to pat Skuld’s hand. “I was thinking about how to tell Andrew about twee and you’ve given me a way.” She turned to him. “When Iain first contacted us, his Lucifer gave us each a small computer of sorts. It assists us and we can use them to communicate with each other without speaking.”


         “Does it think for itself?” Andrew asked.


         “It does.”


         “Then it is what we call an artificial intelligence and you calling it a computer probably just made it angry.” Andrew chuckled.


         Belldandy blinked. “It just informed me that you are correct, that it is not a computer but it wants you to know that it is also not an artificial intelligence. It is a twee and Tirsuli and is not like anything you’ve seen before.”


         “I can agree with that.”


         “Right.” Belldandy laughed to herself. “Anyways, she also gave me some to hand out to my closest friends. I have handed out a few already, but I had been saving them for this moment.” She looked at him. “I have no intention of ever losing you. A twee will help protect you and help us all keep in contact.”


         Andrew frowned. “How many do you have?”


         “A few dozen and Lucifer has said she will provide more if I need them.”


         “Was this how Urd was talking to you yesterday?”


         Urd dimpled. “It was more that they all experienced the day as I did.”


         “Oh.” Andrew sighed. “Well, if you are offering to give one to me, I would have to insist all of my pokegirls get one too.”


         Belldandy nodded. “I agree. I can retrieve the seeds she gave me for you to hand out.”


         “I won’t do that until I get a better explanation of what they are.” Andrew chuckled at her indignant expression. “Bell, we’ve known each other for over a month now but you were given these. I’m sure there are things about them you don’t know.”


         Belldandy begrudgingly nodded. “I can probably tell you the answers to your questions.”


         “Or your twee can.”


         Belldandy giggled. “Right.”


         “But Iain would know everything I need to know, not just what I think I want to know.” Andrew explained. “So it’s a good idea to ask him in the first place.”


         “He’s right.” Skuld smiled at Belldandy. “Being smart is a good trait, Bell. Don’t be mad at him for that.”


         Belldandy sighed. “I concede. I will still bring you the seeds but understand if you do not use them at first.”


         “Weren’t you going to show them around?” Andrew addressed Cristina. “While you do, I can call Iain and ask my questions.”


         “That would work out.” Cristina nodded. “Let’s do that. Kuu, can you get them started? I need to tell Andrew something in private.”


         The ElfQueen nodded, standing and beckoning the Megami to her. “Of course. Please follow me, sisters.”


         “We’ll go too.” Lyn said, standing with Gale and following the other four out. “Don’t be long, Cristina!”


         Andrew watched the door shut. “This is about today, isn’t it.”


         Cristina laughed. “You missed training today. On top of that, you got reeeeally close to giving three new girls as much or more time as you gave your wife. On her wedding night.”


         Andrew glanced at her, stifling his panic. “My wife told me to love them.”


         “One third of your wife said that. One third wanted you nowhere near them. The other third was excited to have new allies.” She smiled gently. “We’ll call that a fifty fifty split. You’ll have to work for your apology, but I’ll accept it when it comes.”




         “Really.” Cristina replied. “You’ll make up for your lost time tomorrow. And then, depending on which jealous pokegirl finds you first, you’ll begin your apology.”


         Andrew blanched. “Oh no.”


         “Oh, yes.” Cristina purred. “I hope you didn’t have any plans this week.”


         “I think I just learned them.” Andrew replied weakly, watching her laugh and slip out after the tour group.







         Andrew placed the call and smiled when Theodora appeared. “Good evening, Theodora. I hope I’m not catching you at a bad time.”


         Theodora smiled back. “Of course not, Andrew. It’s good to talk to you again. I heard from Lucifer that Mary Lou’s mission was a success.”


         Andrew grunted. “For what it needed to do it was a resounding success. The fallout is still being felt, but when isn’t something going wrong?”


         Theodora laughed quietly. “All too true. How can I help you today?”


         “I’ve managed to attract the attention of a couple of Megami.” Andrew explained. “Apparently you know them. Belldandy, Skuld, and Urd.”


         Theodora nodded. “Yes, we’ve heard through the grapevine how they started courting you. May I ask how they are doing?”


         “Pretty good, I think. We bonded last night.”


         Theodora’s expression was neutral but internally she was celebrating when she responded. “That’s wonderful. Are they why you called?”


         “In a way.” Andrew rubbed his chin. “Belldandy offered me twee.”


         Theodora nodded. “She must be very fond of you then. However, as far as Grey is concerned, she was given complete latitude in how to distribute her twee. We trust her judgement.”


         “Great, but I have no idea what a twee is.”


         Theodora looked surprised. “You don’t? I was under the impression you were like Iain.”


         “I am but I never wrote about the Tirsuli. Those were Kerrik- sorry, Iain’s people.” He rolled his eyes. “Okay in this world the first statement would also be true, that they are Kerrik’s people.”


         Theodora laughed. “I understand what you are trying to say. So you do not have the knowledge of them that Iain does?”


         “I do not.”


         “Interesting.” Theodora appraised him. “What do you know about them?”


         “Without meaning disrespect, I’m not going to tell you for free.”


         Theodora’s mouth widened into a grin. “You do want me to help you, do you not? Still, you know exactly why you called today. Interest me.”


         “I know that I have accrued quite the debt to Iain since I first messed with a dimensional transmitter and drew his attention.” Andrew replied. “Supposedly I’ve paid some of it off but we both know a stream of ferals is something any decent tamer could provide. And my information hasn’t been very broad.”


         “No, but the information you have been able to give has been useful.” Theodora countered. “We don’t have,” she smiled slightly, “other agents in your area. We never had any need to.”


         “Yea, well, it’s not groundbreaking.”


         “True.” Theodora conceded. “With that out of the way, what are you looking for?”


         “I would like to bargain for information on what twee are, the monetary debt I still owe you, and access to your communication network, among other things.”


         Theodora held up her hand, palm facing him. “I will stop you right there. Twee are provided for free to the clans by those who can produce them. By giving them to Belldandy Lucifer extended that same courtesy. Since she is now offering them to you, that means they, and the information about them, are free to you and yours as well. This was something we already anticipated.”


         “Well that makes things a bit cheaper.”


         Theodora nodded. “It does. As does this next part.” She smiled mischievously. “I am willing to pay a reasonable price for any author information you are willing to sell.”


         “Most of it is useless to you.”


         “You’d be surprised what I consider useful.” Theodora replied. “Information that Iain does not have is very useful indeed.”


         “What do you stand to gain from this?” Andrew asked abruptly. “Beyond the obvious. I came to you today willing to pay for something you already considered mine and instead of taking your free victory you’ve not only lowered your price, you’ve informed me I may hold items of high value that I was going to sell for pennies. I know nothing about the Tirsuli but I know what status I have in comparison to you and there is no culture I can remember that would be as fair to an outlander as you seem to be being to me.”


         “What other cultures do you know of?” Theodora asked curiously.


         “I know of dozens if not hundreds of what I once considered fantasy cultures, ranging from nonmagic to high magic and high technology and everywhere in between. I don’t know where the Tirsuli are on that scale, but no matter where they lie the ones who volunteer information like this are the rare exception.”


         Theodora nodded slightly. “It’s true that normally, a clan wouldn’t even be having this conversation with an outlander. However, we hope to be your friends one day, Andrew. As Iain is fond of saying, our children will need mates. Yours may well marry into our family one day and knowing more about you tells us more about what they may be able to offer. Additionally I understand that while you don’t have information on some things Iain does, you still may have information that could be valuable and I would much rather you continue thinking of us as your first customers instead of as a last resort because we cheated you and you found out. I almost never focus on the short term. A clan is meant to be forever and forever is a long time to be playing a game like that.”


         “See, that’s more what I expected.” Andrew chuckled. “Let’s start with this then. I have the entire written and oral history of a planet that hosts a race which is highly accomplished magically and probably has a few gems technologically. I am today willing to sell you the story of their relevant history and all related material.”


         “And what would be this relevant history?”


         “The discovery, activation, and exploration of a system of dimensional gates that are efficient enough to be functionally eternal.” Andrew smiled. “In addition the story lists various technologies and magicks as well as the battle strategies of these people and their customs and seats of power. It’s a crash course in everything an outsider would need to know about them.”


         “Does it explain how to replicate the gates?” Theodora queried.


         Andrew grinned. “It does not, but it does reveal enough that a talented mage should be able to figure it out if they didn’t want to simply buy the secret outright.”


         Theodora laughed gaily. “You’re offering me a teaser.”


         “I figure you may have things I want but don’t know about. Keeping you interested in what I have is a good way to negotiate offers for the future.” Andrew chuckled.


         “I assume this penchant for scheming is a common trait among authors like you and Iain. You’re correct. And in the interest of giving a fair price for what you promise, I will offer you the balance of your remaining debt, the communications access you desire, and the subspace transmitter you will require for Cortney to interact with the twee network.” Her eyes twinkled with suppressed laughter. “You may have any two for the price I have offered.”


         “I’m pretty sure two of those are worth much more than the third.” Andrew laughed. “A subspace transmitter? Why can’t Cortney just have a twee?”


         “Videogirls are inorganic intelligences similar in function and somewhat similar in form to people like me and so do not have the required biology to use a twee.” Theodora explained. “A subspace transmitter will allow her to still communicate with the network. It will be a nanite grown addition to her casing that will not interfere with her in the slightest and will not even be visible, in case she has vanity issues. Because of the small size, however, it will be just as limited in range as regular twee, which is a light second.”


         “I see. I don’t really have much of a choice.” He gave her a rueful smile. “For the story I promise I accept in trade communications access and the transmitter you offer. It appears I am still indebted to you.”


         “Maybe not for long.” Theodora replied. “Depending on what this story contains I may be the one calling you and negotiating a sale.”


         “Do you have any knowledge on a race of people calling themselves ‘Erdan’?”


         Theodora grinned. “I do not. And I have a very broad database.”


         “Then your theory is probably correct.”


         Theodora chuckled. “I will send the transmitter by drone immediately. Once your twee are online you will be able to access our communications network and at that time I will take a direct upload of the story in question.”


         “You’re going to have to explain what twee are before I do that.”


         Theodora nodded. “The drone will have that information for you to view. In short, twee are biotechnology that bond to a host and assist them with various duties, such as communications, data sensing, and real time analysis. It will be like having a second brain helping you keep track of your surroundings.”


         “Do all Tirsuli have twee?”


         “Almost all Tirsuli who can have a twee does. Some choose not to, for personal or religious reasons, and some very few cannot accept the technology.”


         Andrew grinned. “I won’t ask about those since that’d probably send me down a rabbit hole that would leave me irreversibly indebted to you. I’ll take my small victory today.”


         Theodora nodded. “It was a pleasure, Andrew. I’ll talk to you soon. And if you wish to purchase that third option or anything else, don’t hesitate to call.” She smiled and terminated the connection.








Smoke Devils Chain of Command

Col. Andrew Ranger

Maj. Cortney

Maj. Aella

(Logistics) Maj. Lyn

Cpt. Nevaeh (Ret.)

(Defense) Cpt. Kuu

(Beta) Cpt. Cristina

(Medic) Cpt. Gale

(Council) Cpt. Rein (Ret.)

GySgt. Constance

1stSgt. Fu

GySgt. Ishara

SSgt. Nami

SSgt. Shamira (Ret.)

Sgt. Lucina

Sgt. Ann (Ret.)

Sgt. Melody

Sgt. Yang (Ret.)


Cpl. Furia

Cpl. Nova














Cristina – (Blessed, Fiendish) Ophanim – Beta


Aella – (Hunter) Shinryu

Cortney – (Upgraded) Videogirl

Fu – Warvern

Lucina – Shadowcat

Nami – Sharptits

Constance – Tank Vixxen

Gale – Night Nurse

Shamira – Goldina

Nevaeh – (Blessed, Fiendish) G-Splice

Melody – Wet Queen

Ann – Ice Empress

Nova – Blazicunt

Furia – (Fiendish) Wolf Queen

Rein – Myobu

Ishara – Romanticide

Kuu – Elfqueen

Lyn – Archmage

Yang – Nereidame

Daria – Vampire

Camiel – (Paragon) Archangel

Albia – (Hunter) G-Splice