Disclaimer: this story is darker than later stories.
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I buttoned my long coat as I exited the carriage, the cold air filling my lungs with the pain of a thousand tiny needles. The intense sickness of the last few weeks was still settled there, though lessened, and I coughed painfully, the familiar coppery taste of my own blood filling my mouth as the ache flared in my chest muscles.
It was a feeling I knew well. I had been sick for more days of my life than I had ever been healthy. My lungs had always been my greatest rival, damning me to a prison of parlors and bedrooms while other boys my age engaged in sports, or adventures with girls, or even teased the odd monster.
Instead, life for me had been books, tickling clocks, and watching my peers from afar through windows in musty old houses. I preferred written words to speaking, and books to jabbering friends. Or so I told myself. In my darkest moments, I admitted to myself how lonely I truly was.
I focused on my studies, and when I came of age I dove into management of my estate, and correspondence with my friends through letters. I had become known as a competent administrator, and I had received offers from several firms, and an offer of a position in government.
But these things appealed little to me. All that mattered was my family and the estate. My sickliness meant I would never sire an heir, but I could bequeath the property to my niece and her children in good working order.
After an interminable journey in the rocking and jostling carriage, which had done my lungs no favors, we finally arrived at the house, my Aunt’s decaying black mansion called the Auberge.
Aunt Antonia was a colorful character, a woman given to odd fancies, but she was always kind to us.
She was a handsome woman even in her autumn years, a brunette with wrinkles around her eyes that somehow enhanced the beauty of her youth. She had died younger than she should have, a death brought about by her love of hard living and fondness for drink, especially in later years. Her death had brought our once large family to merely two people: myself and my niece.
I felt much guilt in my eagerness to inspect her mansion. My fortunes had become rough of late, and her death, though sorrowful, was timely for my own needs. My own estate, modest but profitable, had fallen on hard times along with most of the countryside during the long famine.
Compounding this was the seeming intractability of the Duchess of Sunderland, the rising young spider-woman who had taken the social scene by storm almost as much as she had roiled her sworn lords. She seemed eager to collect our estate’s taxes and was intractable to any plea for an extension. It was clear she was eyeing the estate, and using the famine as a good pretext to acquire it.
My Aunt’s old holdings -and its sale – would provide enough money to last until the famine ended, and stave off our ruin.
Nera, my niece and traveling companion, brushed up alongside me, purring. She was a faithful monster, my catgirl niece, in truth one of the few monsters I could interact with. My illness had filled in monsters an acute reprehension, a disdain that one might have for say a frozen custard in the dirt, or a carriage with a broken frame. A sickly man was of little use to them. But Nera was never like that.
Her father, my noble brother Edward, had happened upon her mother Poppea in the cold rain, and wretched as she was, her deep blue eyes -the same my niece now possessed- stirred him to rescue her.
Being a kindly man full of charity, Edward took the catgirl home and fed her, and she found her way into his arms in short order. Within a year Nera was born.
But then her father died in the Third Great War, and Poppea fell sick and died ten years later, leaving a ten year old catgirl with only a sickly man a mere eight years her senior as her guardian.
In spite of a life of sorrows, Nera was happy. It shamed me to think she was so outgoing while I was so grim, but her happiness was so infectious it didn’t matter. In truth, Nera filled me with much joy, being as I knew the closest thing to a sister (or daughter) I would ever know.
She would be staying with me only for the night, and then be off to pursue her studies in Loudon, and her dream of landing her unrequited crush, Harold, as a husband. He was a young athletic baronet set to inherit forty thousand, and while the match was somewhat outside her station, I still hoped for it, that she might be taken care of.
All it took for a marriage between a monster and a man to be legal was evidence of congress, and that would be easy enough for her to get. She was spry and quick, and I had seen her wrestle with boys often enough, pin them as often as they pinned her. It would not take much for her to get him in a position where he could not resist her, and her beauty made his resistance unlikely anyway.
The Auberge was on her way to Loudon, and silly as it sounds, I hoped she might come to visit me over the weeks and months while I managed the estate, and brighten my days with her playful nature.
Her lips were pursed as she looked at the black mansion, dilapidated as it was. Her eyes were narrowed and her cat girl ears flat.
“It needs a lot of work, Uncle Horace,” she said. She thought little of this estate, I knew, or my interest in it, but then she had no clue how dire our finances were.
“Time, and money,” I said, narrowing my eyes, hoping it would make the ruin disappear. “But we must fix it up for a sale.”
“This is all that’s left?” Nera said.
“Your Aunt Antonia squandered much of the fortune on her oracles and various cult obsessions,” Bardly, our ancient family attorney, said as he took unsteady steps down to the ground. “And her card games.”
“Yes, the scandal of the family,” I murmured.
“We shouldn’t speak ill of the dead,” Nera admonished. “At least her debts died with her.”
“They did not die. Debt never dies,” I responded, kicking at a large dull rock near my feet. “Half the estate went to her creditors.”
As the rock tumbled, I noticed a square edge, and realized the rock was a piece of brick, a fragment from a nearby wall.
I could only shake my head.
Auberge was my Aunt’s second husband’s holding, not my family’s as such, but it had once been a fine mansion. Indeed, the bones of the great house still hung proud, but the surface was scoured and filthy. Black vines had grown up the mansion sides and died there, and they looked like the tendrils of a Kraken which might drag the mansion down into a sea of overgrown yellow grass on the raised mound.
“Perhaps only the exterior is rough,” Nera said, trying to be positive.
When we walked over the creaking floorboards and saw the soggy, rotting wood on the porch, with its flaking white paint, we both knew she was probably wrong.
The interior was all sheets on furniture and cobwebs, and cluttered broken fragments of chairs. This was all of little concern, but the cracks in the walls and the curled wood floors was greater worry.
The main rotunda was impressive, or would have been in its heyday. The main staircase dominated the circular room and tiled floors, a lavish open stair that went to a balcony second floor with rails along the hall. If the pieces were not dulled in shadow and the carpets not torn and scuffed, it may have even been grand.
The kitchens were in rough shape, looted by the staff it appeared. The upstairs had much in the way of ruined furniture and broken beds.
My great fear was that the library would be looted, but to my amazement it was untouched. When I opened the heavy doors with a whine, I saw a cozy study lined with shelves of books. In the center of the room was a circular window which looked out over a field below and a forest beyond it.
“Well, we’ve seen it. Let’s go,” Nera said. Her voice was a plea. “We can stay at the Inn in town.”
“Nonsense,” I responded. “It will cost too much money to stay there. The house will suffice.”
“No. Have it leveled,” Nera said. “Sell the land. Don’t waste time here.”
I frowned. Nera was not usually so nervous. “Why so…firm about this, Niece? It’s just a house.”
“This house is not right,” she said, her ears flat against her head. “I feel it in my bones.”
I patted her shoulder. “It is just the dark. It is quite imposing, I will agree
“You are given enough to melancholy as it is, Uncle Horace,” Nera said. “This house is dark, and Aunt Antonia’s obsession with magic will sour your mood. Who knows what nightmares may come to you here?”
“Nightmares can come wherever I sleep, Nera. They are just nightmares. It will be fine.”
“Well what about a…a succubus…or a ghost. This seems like a prime place for them to congregate.”
“There aren’t any succubi or ghosts in the house; we’ve had the priests give it a very thorough going-over,”
I laughed. “And even so, darling Niece, my lungs insulate me from a monster better than a million paladins could. I am emaciated and sickly. These are traits which the reproductive drive rejects. Even the libido of monsters is affected.”
She looked at me disbelieving.
“There is no reason monsters would treat me differently than Human women ever have,” I added, hoping to calm her.
“You don’t get it, Uncle. You are so…innocent sometimes,” she said.
I laughed again. “A person who holds the purse strings is many things, but he is not innocent.”
“There’s more to life than money, Uncle Horace. And more to lust than healthy lungs.”
“Even so, there are no monsters here save for you. It shall be fine, I promise.”
She frowned and still did not speak, her eyes narrowed in a glare. The Stink Eye. I had received it from full cats enough, when food was slow in coming. It was an ability of all women, though in Catgirls it found truest expression.
“What?” I responded.
“I’m wondering if I should have you committed now, so as to protect your mind by force, or if I should wait until you are a raving madman.”
“Ah. Well I can help you there: wait. We can’t afford it,” I responded.
“And you don’t want any staff here at all?”
“Our men are busy on our estate. Bardly has several carpenters he knows local to this area. They can help get the estate restored.”
“I mean like Maria or Krohn,” Nera responded. “Serving staff.”
“To what? Cook and clean and do laundry? I can handle all that,” I said.
“No you can’t!” Nera said. “You’ll starve to death without someone to pull your nose away from a book.”
“I was a bachelor for many years before you came. I handled all such tasks.”
“You did it poorly. You would have wasted away to nothing if Father hadn’t kept an eye on you.”
“That was true, once. Edward was always good about things. Always took care of me. But when he passed, well, I had to become a bit more aware of my surroundings,” I sighed. “We all had to change a bit.”
I smiled a little as I finished speaking. She smiled too. We both thought of Edward for a moment. We both thought of him often.
“Anyway,” I said. “I’ll be okay.”
Bardly departed in the carriage, and Nera and I did our best to prepare a meal. She enjoyed cooking, though she was not particularly good at it. Nonetheless I still always enjoyed her burned meals for the earnestness with which they were prepared.
The dining room was as much a mess as everywhere else, with two broken cabinets flanking a large stone fireplace full of ash. The table, long and wooden with a dark finish, was mercifully in good shape, as were two of the chairs. I lit some candles and the fireplace, but the room seemed to absorb light and give little of it back except in imposing shadows.
We huddled near the stone hearth, eating the scorched beef and soggy vegetables. Yet I enjoyed every morsel, for Nera was with me, chattering away.
“I still dislike this house,” she said. “I fail to see how Aunt Tonia could stand it. It’s too dark.”
“It wasn’t always,” I said gravely. “She released most of the staff five years ago after a…bad week at cards, and it swiftly fell to disrepair. I should have called on her. Taken over her affairs when she drank herself senseless.”
“She would not listen,” Nera said. “She was a bit of a fool, dear as she was.”
I nodded. “She had so many vices. Still, she was a kind woman.”
“The last time I saw her was the Atherton wedding,” Nera said.
“I remember,” I responded. “It was the last time the family was together.”
“It is now,” Nera said. “We’re all that’s left.”
I sighed. “That’s true. Your grandparents, your parents, your great-aunt…all gone. And Tonia’s son Boris died in the Third Great War. It’s just us.”
“Well, it’s just us – for now. I’ll have lots of kitties soon. There will be so many people coming over to see you that you’ll be sick of us.”
I laughed. “Your crush will come around by then?”
“I almost got a chance at him at the Atherton wedding, in fact. I had him up against a wall, in the garden, but then his sister came over and chased me off. I was so close. His eyes were as big as saucers. I got to pinch his butt though as he left. He jumped like a rabbit.” She started purring, her tail swishing back and forth.
“Harold isn’t just a scratch toy with lands, Nera. He’s a person.”
“Oh Uncle Horry,” Nera said, using he old nickname for me. “He’s a sweetheart. I’d never hurt him. But I’m going to make him my husband and that requires some forwardness,” she smiled. “He didn’t resist, and he smiled at me later that night. I think I could ask him and he’d go along with it at this point.”
“Well, I’m happy for you. But don’t neglect your studies all the same.”
“I’m not cut out for books,” Nera said. “I want to have kittens and have a man take care of the money stuff.”
“You can’t rely on that,” I said. “You need to be able to find your own way if necessary.”
“I’ll join the Army if I have to. We’ve had enough solitary bookish types in the family. It didn’t work well for Aunt Antonia.”
“Antonia? Bookish?” I responded.
“What do you call that creepy room upstairs?”
“The study? It’s not creepy.”
“There’s a human skull in there. With a candle on it.”
“It’s just an affectation, dear.”
“It’s weird. I don’t like it when you get around that stuff. It’s all very…succubi.”
I laughed. “Everything you dislike is succubi.”
“They are out there, Uncle Horry,” she said, her big cat eyes black and somber. “And I don’t care how much you think they don’t want you: they do. You are an unattached gentleman. Promise me you’ll stay out of there.”
“What? Are you serious?”
“You’re going to read some spellbook and wind up with a head demon, or something. Promise me. Read the books you brought if you are bored.”
“I’m serious Uncle Horry, don’t go in there. I have a very strong…sense. Something there is wrong.”
I stared at her, brow furrowed. “Fine. I’ll stay out of it. In any case I shall be too busy getting the estate fixed up to deal with all that.”
“I hope so. I can’t bear the thought of you winding up like Aunt Tonia.”
“There’s little risk of that, dear. I promise. She looked so good at the Wedding,” I said, hoping to change the subject. “Very happy.”
Nera laughed a little. “She was soused for most of it. She made a pass at the Duchess of Sunderland’s brother, do you remember?”
I sipped at my wine, recalling the scene. “He couldn’t have been more than eighteen. The poor boy. What a mess.”
“She got the nickname monster woman in Loudon.”
I laughed. “Are you kidding?”
She nodded. “Monster woman. The joke was she was a mermaid because she drank like one. And the young Lord, they were calling him Lord Auberge. The poor boy ran off and got married two months after so it would stop. Apparently it ruined an arranged marriage and caused a huge ruckus.”
“Oh, God…” I groaned. “The one family we could do without antagonizing. Why didn’t you tell me?”
Nera shrugged. “I was kind of hoping not to get you, you know…”
I frowned at her.
“I didn’t want to get you worked up.”
“It would have helped to know. I mean, I knew it happened at the wedding, but I didn’t know it had blown up so much. The Duchess – I need to make our apologies.”
I shuddered, recalling the Duchess. She had been at the wedding as well, haughty and imperious, holding court with terrified nobles at her seat near the bride and groom. She was not big – in fact, I’d say she was a rare monster who weighed less than me – but she was formidable, and even hellhounds and orcs kept out of her piercing gaze.
“I’m not so sure the Duchess dislikes you,” Nera said. “I got a very opposite impression.”
“You think every monster wants to bed me. You weren’t there when I first went to her. I tried to reason with her, even before our Aunt’s unfortunate actions. Her father was a kind man, informal, but her…I went up to her to entreat her for an extension…”
“I remember,” Nera said, irritated. “Walking up to monsters, Uncle Horry, you an unmarried man…it’s a wonder some Oni hasn’t made you her bench press yet.”
I rolled my eyes. “Nera, please. In a reception room, in public? She wanted none of me anyways. She just stared at me, with those narrow eyes, like I was a buzzing fly, and told me that there would be no extension. The whole table heard. She began talking how I need to account for our holdings to her at her estate when you came over.”
“Well, I’m glad I did. I don’t trust that Spider.”
I looked down at the remnants of wine in my glass. “I don’t, either. She wants our property. I think- I’ve heard spider girls will digest their enemies.
Nera’s eyes narrowed. “She’s welcome to try. I’d break her into a hundred pieces.”
I knew that to be true. Despite their cuddly and cheerful nature, catgirls were ferocious, and nothing was as sadistic as they were.
Nera left too soon, and I was in the house alone. The darkness I could bear, but my Niece was like my happiness, and her departure filled me with sadness.
In truth, the house was hard to handle, as she had predicted.
The days were busy, but the nights were disquieting. I could hear the cracks of wood as the house expanded with the warming weather, and skittering in the walls.
At night the house seemed to close in on me.
It happened the first night after Nera left – a loud crack in the bedroom that was not merely the house settling, and then a shadow across my window – something large and terrifying, grasping. And then what sounded like a whisper, in some foreign tongue.
In the days I roamed the house, taking accounts and doing some of the fixes. I was handy enough with woodwork and some plumbing, but exertion came easily, and I retreated to my room to handle correspondences.
Bardly’s local contracts came – Mr. O’Reilly, a potbellied but stout man with two powerful Oni daughters that towered over him and two sons who weren’t much smaller than they were.
“The girls are both married, not to worry,” he told me as he exited. “I left my two maiden daughters at home when I heard you weren’t attached. They’ve been frisky lately.”
I thanked him with a joke, though as usual it was unnecessary. The Oni’s eyed me with disdain. Oni’s valued strength in mates, an odd decision since they had enough of it, but beneficial to me since I was scrawny and didn’t need to worry.
The O’Reilly’s were a cheerful family, if prone to cussing and bickering. They worked away on the roof and in the hallways, and there work was impressive.
But the nights were growing worse. The master bedroom seemed an incessant torrent of whispers and thumps, but if I searched for them, I found nothing. I began to wonder if there was a ghost in the house.
The night came when the noises were so bad, and the rattling so incessant, that I felt in truth great mortal terror. I lay in bed, listening to the whispers and the thuds, and the scratching.
And then I heard it, clear as day:
I raced through the house in my dressing gown, to make for the outside, but at the stairs down to the first floor I saw shadows moving, and I found the thought of descending the stairs to investigate unfathomable. I grasped up a table leg from the hallway and made for the one room with a locking door – the library.
Nera had made me promise not to go into Antonia’s library, and so I had remained away, but this was a different situation. I barred the door securely behind me, and exhaled. I lit the candles and the room grew warm with light.
I looked outside. I needed to last until daylight. Whatever it was, it would leave when the sun rose as it had done on nights before, and I could escape the house and have it leveled like Nera suggested.
In the meantime, it gave me a chance to look over my Aunt’s books. Perhaps, I thought, my tormentor was summoned by one of these books.
As I scanned her shelves, the house quieted, and I put the strange intruder from my mind.
Antonia’s library of the occult was extensive and well-known; I was certain all of it was charlatan nonsense, though it was said that she possessed the fallen journal of Abner Daltry, the wizard traveler from a distant and alien realm, one of the few books ordered heretical and to be burned.
That rumor proved untrue, and all she possessed was an accounting of one of Daltry’s purported lovers, an Esther Mayes. The book was widely published and of little value.
But there were many other fascinating books. There were books about summoning demons, or wielding magic, or weird and mysterious spirits and creatures. But there was a curious section of ancient romance tales about a society of men and monsters, in which human women would sell their sons or brothers (or in one case, a father) to ravenous monster slavers.
The stories seemed to have a set formula to them: a free and independent man would be subdued and sold by a human woman who disapproved of his lifestyle. He would then be taken by a monster (or monsters) and ‘civilized’ through degrading sex acts until he was obedient to his monster girl mistress.
I confessed that as well as feeling horror at the tales of this mythical ancient civilization, I found the prospect somewhat arousing, but did not understand why my aunt would collect such books.
As I finished one volume about a young noble soldier ravaged by a platoon of common Oni, I exhaled, aware that the story was affecting me. The thought of that soldier’s degradation -of being that soldier – didn’t fill me with horror. I put the thoughts out of my mind, as I always had. The pleasures of the flesh made one weak.
“I always like that one, too,” A voice from the darkness of the room said.
I gasped, standing, reaching for the table leg as my heart pounded.
I watched as in short order, one by one, each candle in the room extinguished, save the one near the cold fireplace and my chair.
“Well, well,” the voice in the darkness said. “Looks like I startled you.”
“Who are you?” I asked, furtively grasping my table leg weapon.
“A claimant,” she said with a small laugh. “You may as well just drop that stick, Horace. You aren’t getting out of here.”
I moved to the door, unlatched it, and tried the handle. It was unyielding. I put my shoulder against the door uselessly.
“Locked. From the outside,” she said triumphantly. “And barred. The windows too. O’Reilly does great work, doesn’t he?”
“O’Reilly…who are you? One of his daughters?”
My only response was a dismissive laugh.
I scanned the darkness. “Well, you got in somehow. I can get out that way.”
She laughed again. “Oh? I could be a spooky ghost, or a devilish imp, or a mean, nasty succubus. I can get in and out of this room easily. You, however…”
“What do you want with me? There is no money here, beyond the small
amount in my room.”
“What makes you think I’m a thief and not a ghost?”
“A ghost wouldn’t hire O’Reilly to build a trap.”
“And why should a thief? I came to settle accounts with your Aunt.”
“And as you doubtlessly know, she is dead. So what is it you want?”
“What she promised me. Your aunt was a gambler. She had the bug, so to speak. And gambling is never about gaining money or things; it is about winning. And the winning is only made sweeter if the stakes are…very high.”
“So, she bet the house and lost it,” I said into the darkness, cradling the wooden chair leg in my hand and turning. “You have no proof of that. I have title and the deed-“
“You think I want this dump?” She said with a laugh. “The game your Aunt played at didn’t deal in raw amount. We played for what the players valued. A single ring could be worth a castle if it was treasured.”
I heard a skitter across the wood floor. “What else is there, if not money or the house? Some…book? Daltry’s diary?” I asked.
There was a lyrical giggle from the darkness.
“There’s only one other thing in here. I came a long way for it.”
“I don’t understand.”
Another giggle. “You’re so naive. It’s…cute.”
Slowly, I conceived the inconceivable. “Me? But I’m not worth anything.”
“You just have no clue, do you? Your Aunt had bet your body and name quite a few times over the years. It was only a matter of time before she wound up losing you.”
There was a short pause as I could hear a husky, heavy breath. “I was just the one she lost you to. The stakes kept getting raised. That’s when I made my move. I said how about that nephew of yours? Had she won she’d have been richer than her wildest dreams. She assented. I knew her hand had to be good. But see, I knew mine was better. Winning you was the biggest thrill of my life. So far.”
I felt the stab of a cough, but I suppressed it. I could not risk taking my eyes away or dropping my guard.
“I have nothing of value,” I said, before the cough won out and I doubled over for a moment. “I-I have no money or lofty title.”
“Now, now. Your station is perfectly respectable. And you do have something of value. Between your legs,” she said. “Have you ever shown it to a girl before?”
“No,” I said quickly. I felt my face get warm, “Well-I…It doesn’t matter. I am sick. My lungs are weak. My Aunt bet a useless asset.”
“I always appraise assets myself. So…let’s see it then,” she answered.
“My lungs? I only cough when-“
“No,” she said. “I don’t mean your lungs. Take your penis out. Now.”
I trembled. Nera had tried to warn me of this-somehow she knew- but I did not listen. I had always thought myself immune, safe. I wished she was here, now. Custom and propriety would have prevented this mysterious monster from pursuing me any further. And at the very least Nera could have seen where she was in the darkness.
My heart was racing, making me feel -to my horror- alive and stirring something in my loins. My own penis was working against me, intrigued by the prospect of being seen by a strange, eager monster. So often ignored and neglected, it had betrayed me. I was becoming aroused, and it meant our ruin.
If she saw me with an erection, she’d be cleared to force herself on me. No jury would convict a monster of rape if the man was aroused. No prosecutor would even take the case to court. I would be totally vulnerable to her advances, and she could claim me as a husband. And with it, all my fortunes and estates would pass to her, since the marriage was by rape.
Nera and I would lose everything, all because I could not control my base, animal urges. I realized how blind and stupid I had been. I put our family in jeopardy.
I brandished the table leg. “No. I-I insist you release me from this room. I had no part of this wager and you are trespassing.”
No response, and no sound from the darkness. All I could hear was my own breathing.
Then, a sudden rush of skittering.
There was a black streak, a gust of wind, and the candle went out. Before I could move, a form collided with me in the darkness, pushing me to the ground and knocking the wind from my lungs. They betrayed me yet again, and I began to cough on the ground. The deep cough which always left me gasping and desperate for air. I cursed myself in the darkness, knowing I would be taken by this pitiless monster.
She was standing over me, now, the indistinct shape. I could not resist. The coughing was too intense, and soon even the monster no longer mattered. Only air mattered.
In between the coughs and the tunnel vision they brought, I felt two clawed hands wrap around my chest, firm but gentle, and I felt myself dragged along the ground until I was in the chair near the spent candle.
I leaned forward, panting, while one clawed hand rubbed at my back. The rhythmic motion seemed to slow the pain, and I was able to take control of my breathing. For a moment I lost myself in the rare, pleasant feeling of touch.
When the fit had ended, and I regained my composure, the light of the candle was again flickering. I sank into the chair near the light, the stabbing in my lungs unceasing. I scanned about. The table leg was gone, as was my attacker, back into the shadows.
“Are you okay?” She asked, her voice almost a whisper.
I nodded, clutching at my chest to try to hide my weakness. “Yes. I just sometimes have these coughing fits. Poor health has been my curse.”
“Can’t something be done?”
“I’ve been to doctors my whole life. Some of the best in Loudon,” I said. “There is no cure. I’m…I’m sorry.”
“I’m the one who knocked you down. I wouldn’t have if I had known. Why are you sorry?”
“Because I’m not what you expected, I guess. This is all a mistake. My Aunt is laughing at you now, I’m sure.”
“I doubt that. When it happened, she put down three kings on the table and smiled at me. I don’t think she thought a loss was possible. She never, ever bluffed when she bet you. That was known. When I dropped my four queens, she almost fainted dead away. We nearly sent for a Doctor, the way she sobbed. She went on about what a good man you were, and how you didn’t deserve to be traded like a commodity, and what a horrible thing she’d done. I confess I felt a little bad about it, when I saw her carry on.”
“Not bad enough to relent, though,” I interjected.
“Certainly not! It was a fair bet and I won. All her talking made me more interested. She just went on about how innocent you were, how naive.”
I laughed, and the laughter stirred another cough. “Innocent and naive…ridiculous.”
“Yes. So very ridiculous. I’m glad you think so. You are so very worldly indeed. Now that this silliness is resolved…” She said, punctuating her sentence with the dull thud of wood off in the distance which I guessed was the wooden table leg being tossed away.
“Undo your trousers.”
I felt a pit in my stomach. “Still?”
“More than ever,” she said. “You are so cute and you don’t even know it. I will do it myself if you keep refusing. Rip your clothes clean off you. So go ahead and protest if you want.”
“Look, it’s been a tough night and with my lungs…” I said. “Let’s not do this.”
“What’s ‘this’ exactly?” She said playfully. “What don’t you want me to do?”
“Just let me go,” I pleaded.
“Tell me what you don’t want, and I’ll consider it,” she said.
I sighed. “I don’t want you to make me…to force yourself on me. I won’t last.”
“Oh, don’t worry about that. I’ll do all the work. In a way I’m glad we’re going this route…”
She emerged into the candle light, and when I saw her face I gasped. The proud features, the piercing violet eyes. The full purple lips, half-open and exposing a mischievous fanged grin. And the eight legs which moved so fast, mounted to her spider lower half. She was wearing a black, tight fitting dress from which her pale blue breasts nearly overflowed, and gloves which went to the elbow, sable like her dress, highlighting her small but toned muscles. The gloves themselves covered her fingers, but the sharp claws on the ends poked through, long and black.
My heart thumped in my chest. The Duchess of Sunderland was eyeing me like I was a meal. I felt myself getting harder again, and with it came the horror anew.
“L-Lady Sunderland?” I exclaimed, my voice trembling.
A wide smile went across her face, which put a butterflies in my stomach that were not wholly unpleasant. “I like hearing you say that,” she said.
She walked over to me and put her hands on my legs.
“Well, are you going to resist?” She taunted. “Try to strike me? Do you feel silly, letting a tiny little spider girl terrorize you? Will you fight me now?”
She dug her claws into my pants and began to pull downward, tearing them quietly and exposing my pale legs to the air.
She laughed triumphantly.
“No, you’re much too much of a gentleman for that. Never hit a lady, right? Fuck, I love how we tricked all you boys into being proper gentlemen. It’s like picking ripe fruit off a tree.”
She tore off the remnants of my pants, leaving only my undergarment, a thin sheet of cloth, between her violet eyes and my erection.
“No!” I exclaimed. I tried to cover up, but she moved quickly, rising over me as her eight legs worked her spinneret. Within seconds my hands were fastened by webs to the chair and my feet to the chair legs, such that my legs were open and my clothed manhood unprotected.
“That’s better. Now, let’s just take a look…” She traced one claw along the edge of my undergarment, cutting it loose and letting the cool air touch against my skin. Her lips were pursed and slightly open as she cut, her tongue licking at her violet lips ever so faintly.
The cloth came down, and I was exposed. She giggled. I shut my eyes and tried to turn away.
“Very, very nice. And blonde little pubes like your hair! And look how hard you are!” She said, her breath hitting up against my cock and making it twitch. “And boy are you eager too!”
“Please don’t,” I whimpered. “The estate is all I have. All we have. And my-my honor…”
“Oh I’m taking both, my sweet little fly, and every ounce of cum your balls will ever produce. I’m getting everything you have and will have,” she said.
She leaned over me, bringing her heavenly breasts in contact with my chest. I could feel her breathing on my lips and I moaned involuntarily. For the faintest second she touched her lips to mine, then she pulled back with a laugh.
I blinked. “Y-you kissed me.”
“Have you never kissed a girl?” She asked, amazed.
I shook my head, my face reddening
She stared at me for a second, a look of almost guilt on her face.
“Oh. Well…” She leaned down with her eyes closed. Our lips met and she opened and closed her mouth on mine, her tongue gingerly entering my mouth and rubbing gently against my own.
I shut my eyes and exhaled, which seemed to excite her more, as she moaned. She ran her fingers through my hair.
“There,” she whispered. “That’s a better first kiss I think. Was it good?”
I nodded, my head swimming. I stared at her lips, agonizingly close but still far away. I leaned in.
“Now, now,” she said tenderly. She rose back up. “We’ll be kissing a lot,” she smiled, and her fangs became visible. “But I intend to absolutely torture you first. You virtuous, upstanding boys think you can act all cute and everybody should just humor you. I wanted you the first second I laid eyes on you at the Atherton Wedding, but you were just so coy, weren’t you? Always with your little cat sister or cousin or whatever. All the monsters wanted to get close, to get a piece of you, but your damned sister was on us. She should talk, too, you know. She nearly raped the Sufford boy in the garden. And then your Aunt, not even a monster and behaving like that with my idiot brother. But the hell with it, I should have taken you then, just pushed you down on the dance floor, ripped off your clothes, and claimed you by noble right over my subject. Fucked you in front of everyone, to show them what a pervert you are. You have no idea how crazy you cunt-teases drive us. Well now you’ll get a taste of your own medicine.”
My eyes widened. I remembered the rumors about her, and what she did to her enemies. “Are you going to hurt me?” I asked.
She grinned at me, a mixture of sadism and joy.
“Yes,” she said. “You’ll get the hurt you deserve, cunt tease.”
I struggled with my bonds, which made her recoil in shock. It was no use.
“I won’t let you eat me!”
She looked surprised for barely a second, then laughed. “Eat you?”
“You eat your enemies,” I shot back. “I’ve heard the stories.
“…You’ll have to tell me about these ‘stories’,” she said. “I guess I’ll forgive the confusion being no one explained things to you, but I’m going to fuck you. That’s not eating.”
“”Here,” she said. “Let me show you.”
She reached down and gently cupped my balls with her hands – but made sure her claws were just there, present, so I could feel them, and feel her power over me. She could hurt me, and we both knew it, but her touch was soft, the fabric of her gloves warm and firm.
She squeezed a little, and my penis stiffened. She continued working at my balls, squeezing and fondling, applying gentle pressure and warmth. My balls began to ache. I moaned involuntarily.
“Now you feel it, don’t you? That’s what a monster girl feels when she sees you,” Lady Sunderland said. “Just like that. I wonder how long you can bear what we bear before you go mad.”
She continued fondling me, squeezing, releasing, and every so often lightly tickling my privates with her claws.
“I’ll let you go now, and only now, if you want it,” she whispered.
In my mind, I wanted to say it. But my body…and that kiss…
“Do you want me to stop?”
“No,” I found myself whispering, against all logic.
“Then ask me.”
The voices in my mind were shouting about the estate and Nera and our family honor. But it was all nothing compared to the intensity I felt from her gloved hand, and the taste of her in my mouth.
“Touch me,” I said.
“Please touch my cock,” I said.
“Good. I would have anyway, of course,” she said with a giggle.
She took her finger and began to trace along my penis, where the head and shaft met. The feeling was intense, too intense, bordering on pain. The feeling made the rest of my penis ache and tingle, and want to be touched.
“It’s too much…” I said, the stinging growing more intense.
“Oh I know it is,” she said. “That’s why I’m doing it.”
I let out a cry of pain and confusion, which made her giggle, which only made my penis stiffen more. I began to buck my hips, hoping the chafing of her gloved hands against my shaft and head would move slightly.
“Do you want me to stop?”
“It hurts, doesn’t it?”
“So should I stop?”
I whimpered again and shook my head.
She laughed triumphantly.
“Yeah…you love the pain, don’t you?” She cooed. “This is how I felt when I first saw you. I wanted to fuck you so bad and so raw…I still do.”
She gripped my cock and squeezed, and I moaned as a long line of precum oozed onto her glove.
“Now see what you did!” She said. “You dirty boy. Covering my gloves with your filthy seed.”
“I-I’m sorry,” I said.
She laughed. She took her hand to her mouth and licked it off slowly, grinning widely and showing me a bare purple tongue.
“Mmmm…” She cooed. “You taste fantastic. I shall need to milk you often. In fact…”
She wrapped her hand around my cock again, and began to stroke me roughly, slamming her hand into my balls with each stroke, forcing me to wince with each strike.
The pleasure and pain filled me, but every time I felt like I was close, she would back off, and I would shudder in misery. My balls began to tingle and my cock felt swollen. I was bucking my hips uncontrollably.
As I came close to climax yet again, right on the cusp, she released me, and my penis twitched as she watched it with a sadistic grin. I whimpered.
“Where you about to get your filthy seed on my glove? You are such a pervert.”
She started stroking again, and I sighed in frustration as the intensity overcame me, and then she released. This time, she blew air on my twitching cock and I groaned.
“Do you want me to stop this? To finish you?”
“Yes,” I whispered.
“Do you want me to fuck you?”
She grinned. “Bear that in mind; you are not fucking me. I am fucking you. If you had said no, this would still be happening. You will be perfectly still and obedient. Do you understand?”
“Y-yes, my Lady.”
She took a deep breath. “I like hearing you call me that. Call me that from now on.”
“Yes, my Lady.”
She piled up on top of me, her pussy dripping fluid down the chair. She positioned it over my cock, and more clear fluid leaked down onto my head and shaft.
“Oh God…” She said, licking her purple lips. Her chest was heaving, her full breasts rising and falling. I stared at them, wishing I could see their pale blue skin and the nipples on them.
“This is so hot. Finally, I am going to fuck you. After all these months,” she said, panting, making her wonderful chest rise and fall until I was hypnotized.
“I want…” I said. “Can I please…see your breasts, my Lady?”
She frowned, “You pervert! Don’t be so forward. We’ve only just met.”
“Oh, sorry,” I said.
She laughed. “Oh for goodness sake…you are cute…”
She put her hands behind her back and worked at her dress. It released as though under pressure with a snap, and her tits jiggled when they found release. I gasped. Her breasts were full and spherical, and exposure to the air gave them slight goose bumps. She placed two gloved fingers around her large, puffy nipples and began to rub, her chest rising and falling at her own touch.
I licked my lips, my tongue envious of her fingers as they teased her full breasts.
“They’re so beautiful,” I rasped. “Perfect…”
She giggled, flattered by my honesty, and gave my cock a rewarding squeeze. “They’re very sensitive,” she whispered as her nipples hardened at her touch. “Would you like to kiss them?”
I nodded eagerly.
She moved in closer, and her breasts rose up to my face. I let them hover there a moment, breathing in the warm air and their faint scent. I put out my tongue to her nipple and tasted her delicious erectile skin. She moaned, and squeezed my cock again, this time yanking it.
I suckled voraciously, furiously, the softness of her breasts against my lips as I circled my tongue around her nipple. She moaned, a low growl, and grasped my head by the hair, pushing me between her breasts into the sweat collecting there. I licked and tasted warmth and salt, groaning at the taste and scent of her tit sweat.
She cried out. “Fuck this, I’m taking you now,” she said hoarsely.
She lowered her pussy down on my cock with a slam against my balls, so hard I almost doubled over. Her insides were hot, and smooth, but so firm. My cock began to pulse.
Pussy juices splashed out everywhere, all over the chair, and me, and my cock and groin. She worked her spinneret. Webs grasped my hips like chains, so I could not even buck them. All I could do was lay, my erect cock pulsing.
“Good,” she said. “Now I can fuck you and you can’t try to fuck me.”
She started then, rising and falling on my cock, her hairy pussy sliding down my shaft and slapping against my groin with an audible slurping sound.
“This is so hot…” She growled, thrusting down on me and sending more of her juices everywhere. “You fucking pervert. What kind of fucking little pervert are you, being so hard as you get raped like a common boyslut?”
I could only moan in response, hypnotized by her rising and falling tits, swaying just out of range.
“Shit…” She rasped. She reached her hand down her front and reached into the hair, massaging at her clit. She began to buck harder and more furiously. “This is so fucking good.”
At her new pace, it wasn’t long before I felt it building inside me – fulminating beneath my balls, and then rising to my head. More intense than her earlier tortures, or any feeling I had ever had.
“Ohhh,” I moaned. “I’m going-I’m…”
“Oh fuck yes,” she said, her hand and fingers working her clit more furiously as she sped her rising and falling.
“Yes!” she shouted. She arched her back forward and a powerful orgasm took her. “Yeessssssssss!”
Pussy juices squirted out of her in intense pulses, all over my cock, musty and powerful, as the clamping and releasing inside her put me completely over the edge.
“Oh God…” I said hoarsely.
“Do it!” She shouted, “Cum!”
I cried out.
My penis could take no more abuse, and pulsing, it shot the contents of my balls into the vast smooth womb of my captor. The sensation was furious and intense, like a coughing fit, but I was engulfed in pleasure, my penis erupting and sending all my cum into her in huge thick strands.
She let out a low guttural moan and collapsed on top of me.
I was spent. My heart was still racing, but in addition to the empty feeling in my balls, I felt as if millions of pounds of pressure were lifted from my shoulders. I felt alive.
The spider Duchess lay next to me, her beautiful face just inches from my own. Her purple eyes sparkled in the candlelight.
“Kiss me,” she whispered.
“Yes, My Lady,” I responded.
Our lips met, and our tongues, and she wrapped her arms around my neck.
“Loosen me, please, my Lady,” I requested in between kisses. “I want to hold you.”
She smiled, and with a single motion she sliced my hands free , “Of course…” She began. She smiled “…My Husband.”
I wrapped my arms around her and tugged her to my chest. The warmth and presence of her body felt good, and we kissed, and there was only her and I.
It seemed like only a moment had passed but the sun poked through the window of the library.
“Oh my…” I said. “We’ve been up all night. Just kissing.”
“I like just kissing,” she said. She rested her head on my shoulder and played in my chest hair with her long fingers.
“What happens now?” I asked.
“Well, my love, I make it official,” she said. “I take all your lands, and you, and put you in a little library with no clothes. Then I fuck you thirty to forty times a day.”
My cock hardened at the thought, against her abdomen, and she smiled.
“I knew you’d like that.”