PLEASE READ THIS INTRODUCTION: This is entirely a work of fiction. To be honest, I'm more interested in developing characters than writing sex scenes, although I do hope to include a LOT of sex in the near future. This is merely to get my toes wet, you should have a proper fuck-chapter coming up shortly.
Notice: This is chapter one. Please keep in mind characters, motives, and personalities will change with time. I hope to include more development in the next chapter.
How am I supposed to concentrate when you’re looking at me like that? Alixa thought to herself hysterically. Still, she tried her level best to turn her attention to the potion in front of her, blowing a sheaf of messy blonde hair out of her eyes. It was bubbling sluggishly in the cauldron, the dark green bubbles rising lazily and popping on the surface, and Alixa unconsciously bit her tongue as she measured an exact tablespoon of powdered beetle shells. As soon as the gritty gray powder hit the potion, it sizzled spectacularly and cascaded a shower of sparks over her robes, spattering them with green flames. She shrieked and swatted at the cloth, only to have her body doused with dry, invisible water.
Her master muttered a short word in the Ancient Tongue and she shuddered at the sensation. What made her feel infinitely worse was when she looked up and saw those impassive gray eyes glaring at her from beneath his thick, serious brows. He was disappointed in her, so disappointed, and she couldn’t bear it when he was like this. “I’m sorry, Master!” She gasped, dropping the ladle. Alixa looked miserably down at the cauldron, which already had a thick crust of green foam drying around the edges.
“No matter,” Master Caelum said softly in that low, silk-edged rumble which set every inch of her skin afire. “We’ll try again next month.”
As he limped from the room, resplendent in dark robes of the richest purple, Alixa sank against the ingredient-smeared counter. It had taken weeks to assemble the right items in order to make the potion, collecting all of them at the right time, and it had to be brewed at the full moon, directly at midnight. The exhausted apprentice went to the window and sniffled to herself, wiping her eyes with the hem of her green training robes.
She could have made this potion. Alixa had made it a hundred times before, despite how difficult it was to brew, and that was part of what made it so horrid. Master Caelum had depended on her, and she had let him down now of all times. It was just…
It was just that she recently discovered her master was the most attractive man in the world.
He was much older than her, certainly, but he was still large and strong for a man his age. He had thick black hair swept away from his handsome face, even if it was going gray at the temples. His broad shoulders tapered down to a narrower waist, with surprisingly deft, swift hands for someone as large as he. True, he had a thick scar on his left knee which caused him to limp, and he wasn’t terribly good at conversation, but he had the most beautiful eyes she had ever seen. Not to mention there was nothing as handsome as him working; Caelum was extraordinarily dedicated to his craft, and he had been the deciding factor which made her want to become a potions master instead of some common Mage.
“There’s an art to brewing,” Caelum was fond of saying. “It’s something that you don’t see in casting spells or waving wands. Mages are all about strength and power, the speed and magnificence of their work. All they care about is making a name for themselves. Potion makers are about the artistry and grace of the work we do, and its delicate work. It’s not for the faint of heart, nor the clumsy of hand.”
While it was true he usually gave her this speech after Alixa had broken something or spilled a valuable potion, it was still a terribly impressive speech nonetheless. She found him terribly impressive on the whole.
Alixa sighed and wiped her soft blue eyes. With a little groan of disappointment, she lugged the heavy cauldron over to the sink so she could begin scrubbing it. Artistry and grace or not, she still wished she had the ability to spell things clean.
Caelum took a sharp swig of his hipflask and winced at the sizzling burn. Alixa was probably washing up in the brewing corner, and at the thought of her he sighed in frustration. She was a bright girl, probably too bright for her own good, and a good deal too hot-tempered for his uses. More importantly, she thought the world of him, which was both her greatest flaw and her best aspect. There wasn’t a man under the sun who didn’t like knowing that there was at least one person in the world who found him a tolerable human being, Caelum was sure of it. But it was dangerous of her to like him so much; she hung on his every word like he was the next god sent from the heavens.
He sat down in the library with a little groan of pain, digging his long fingers into his knee. The thick build-up of scar tissue was hot and inflamed, and he soothed it with a wordless spell to cool his exhausted muscles. The potion Alixa had been brewing was an extremely effective pain potion, and it couldn’t be brewed by the person who intended to drink it. Until recently, he had been able to get around this by instructing his apprentice on how to brew it, but now she was apparently losing her focus.
A Potion Master taking on an apprentice was practically an order from the High Order – they were the ultimate legacy, the undying pedigree. Every Potion Master he knew had an apprentice. Some had two or three at a time, others were schoolteachers. But Caelum had always considered himself a loner, a person to work by himself, one of appreciated the solitude and rebelled against the crowd. Ever since his knee had been driving him out of his mind, he had to turn to other measures, and this was the only potion which worked to the degree he desired. And it couldn’t be brewed by him.
Now he had to suffer for an entire month.
Caelum let out a long, shuddering breath, and hoped to the gods that the pain would miraculously go away in the morning. He couldn’t think straight with this pain throbbing at his leg like this.
The door to his library creaked open, and a shaft of light spilled into the gloom. “Master?”
She did have the sweetest voice. “You may enter, Alixa.” He murmured tiredly, and the wards around his library disappeared.
Alixa was bearing a tray with a steaming mug on it and a plate of warmed biscuits. “I thought you might want some tea before you go to bed,” She said in a small voice. He could tell she was still upset over the potion, and she should be. He accepted the tray and took a sip of the tea, and let the warmth blossom in his belly.
“Thank you, Alixa.”
“I-I’m sorry,” The words tumbled out of her mouth of their own accord. “I’m so sorry Master, I don’t know why I was so distracted, I just –“
“There’s no need,” Caelum cut her off quietly. “We’ll begin collecting ingredients in the morning. Get some sleep, and don’t bother about it.” She heard the tight, compressed noise of pain he made as he shifted in his chair. “I’ll manage.”
Cursing her very existence, Alixa crept out the door and back to her bedroom, leaving her master alone with his tea in the darkness.
Dawn was just barely beginning to stretch itself over the horizon when Alixa crept out of the tower. It was a beautiful morning really, what with the soft summer breeze ruffling her short blonde hair and the birds just beginning to poke their heads from their nests and chirrup good morning. There was a beaten path leading to the dark edges of the scurrilously named Doom Forest, where they did most of their ingredient harvesting. Alixa shut the door softly behind her, taking great care not to wake her master. Caelum slumbered lightly, and she since she didn’t know how to ward the place yet, she had to sneak around like a normal person.
Doom Forest wasn’t really so bad, she mused to herself as she hurried through the underbrush. There was a nicely cleared little trail leading in to the heart of the woods, and even though the sticker bushes clung to the hem of her green skirt, they weren’t at all menacing. A few birds trilled happily in the trees, and the sun which began to rise sent slanting bars of golden light through the tree tops. What she needed was a nice damp clump of summer snowdrops, laden with dew and grown on the north side of a stream. There was a nice little brook off to the left-hand fork(or was it the right?). She wasn’t completely sure, but she took the left fork anyway.
She had never been here without her master, but really, it wasn’t so bad once you got used to all the changing landscape. Having spent most of her life either in the slovenly little village she had been born in, or the sturdy gray walls of Caelum’s tower, Alixa rarely got to spend time by herself in the forest. Caelum had told her multiple times that it was a dangerous place, but what could possibly be so bad?
After trekking around for fifteen minutes, she was beginning to get rather sweaty and very lost. She had taken several different turns and now the clear path she had been following dissolved away entirely. With a little whimper, she turned around and looked back into the thicket of shrubs which she had pushed her way through. Her face was scratched, her short blonde hair frizzy and sticking to the nape of her neck, and her green training robes were beginning to feel itchy and hot. Where was that stupid stream?
She squeaked in alarm and whirled around, looking for the source of the sound.
“It’s not wise to be traveling by yourself in this neck of the woods, oh no, it’s not…” A different voice crooned from the opposite direction.
“Who’s there?” Alixa called out. “What do you want?”
“Oh, nothing, just the time of day,” Another voice spoke up, this time from directly behind her.
She turned around again and was met with a young Imp.
Imps were not especially nice things to encounter, especially one that had been standing behind you calling you ‘precious’. Therefore, Alixa must be forgiven of screaming and falling over like a young idiot – certainly, the little group of imps didn’t seem to be bothered. They were short things, covered in dry gray scales which rubbed together at the slightest movement, giving them an eerie rustling noise when they followed someone. They had narrow black pupils and no iris at all, and a black forked tongue which darted between sharp pointed teeth. Occasionally, one or two would let off a puff of smoke from their fingers, obviously showing off, for Imps were creatures of fire. These were very young, so they couldn’t conjure flames just yet, but they did enjoy puffing smoke from beneath their nails.
“And do you have the time of day, little precious?” One of the Imps hissed cheerfully, stalking their prone prey.
“No! Go away!” Alixa struck out at them with her herb-gathering bag and actually struck one against the ribs, allowing her to scramble upwards.
“Not polite, no, not polite at all,” One of the imps screeched, and as Alixa turned to flee she was pounced on by another Imp. They weren’t heavy, but the blow dropped her to her knees again and this time all three piled on top of her in a squirming, scaly pile. Alixa screamed loudly, thrashing wildly, but one of them clamped a clawed hand over her mouth harshly.
“Whiny little human brat,” The Imp sneered. “Grug! Vlak! Fetch some cord!”
Grug and Vlak were barely gone a second – Alixa didn’t even have time to throw off the last Imp yet, when she suddenly found herself with both arms twisted tightly behind her back. “Let me go!” She shrieked, although it was muffled through the last Imp’s claws. Soon, her arms were securely tied behind her back and she was flat on her face, trying to roll helplessly in the grass.
“Stupid human,” Grug smirked, and with a combined effort the three Imps flipped her over. Alixa opened her mouth to scream and a wad of grass was shoved in between her teeth. “Shut up! We don’t want any of your whining.”
“Help us out, Durf, or you get none of the spoils!” Vlak barked, and soon Alixa found herself with an Imp sitting on her ribcage, grinning down at her with a very wicked smile. “Hold her feet!” Vlak ordered, and both Grug and Durf pinned Alixa’s feet tightly. “Well, well, what have we here?” Vlak crooned, teasing the laces on Alixa’s corset. She shook her head furiously, pleading silently with him not to. With a sharp claw, he sliced through the laces with a quick movement, and she soon found both her full breasts in the open air.
Both of the Imps pinning her feet groaned automatically.
Vlak wasted no time, pouncing on her breasts as soon as he saw them. His sharp teeth latched onto her pink nipple, and she tried to scream in pain, but it was no use. His claws scored little grooves into her breasts, and she saw the blood well up instantly beneath his sharp fingers. The Imp sucked hard on her left nipple, then her right nipple, and came up for air. “Spread her legs!” Vlak grinned. “And we shall feast!”
Grug and Durf forced her legs open, clamping down on her thighs and bunching her skirt up around her waist. Her leggings were promptly ripped off, and once her soft inner folds were exposed Grug lost control. He was at her immediately, stroking her with an expert forked tongue, and lapping at the juices she already had shamefully coating her thighs. “Move out of the way!” Durf grumbled, and the Imps fought for position, eagerly sucking her juices while almost painfully pinching her clit. Alixa found her hips bucking in spite of herself, and fought to control her body.
“Stay still, stupid human!” Durf growled, and elbowed his littermates out of the way. “Keep her legs apart!” He cuffed his brethren angrily and they retreated, their lips and chins still shining with dampness. Durf forced a claw into her tight opening, and uncomfortably wiggled it a few times. “She’s unbroken,” He announced with glee. “Fetch a stick.”
Alixa realized with dawning horror what the Imps were going to do when she saw Vlak retrieve a thick bough from a tree. The other two Imps pulled her legs apart as wide as she could possibly stretch, and Alixa saw the sadistic grin on Vlak’s ugly little face. She had been sobbing for some time now, but a fresh round of tears was brought on by this sickening sight. The cold, splintery end of the stick was positioned at her virgin entrance, and she made one last ditch effort to escape when –
A sizzling bolt of electricity shot through the air, crisping Vlak’s head completely. The Imp toppled over, his eyes blank and dead, and two more purple bolts of static sent the other two Imps flying. Alixa rolled over immediately, trying desperately to cover herself, and tried to get to her feet. It was difficult with her hands tied, but once the threat had been dispelled she found she could at least kick her skirt down a little further to protect her modesty. Her leggings were ripped and hanging around one knee, but nothing could be done about that. She looked up with eyes full of gratitude to her rescuer.
It was Caelum, with eyes of stone.
She was horrified – every drop of blood drained from her face, and she felt completely frozen and immobile. Shame thudded heart-wrenchingly through her core, and even though she knew he was disgusted with her, Alixa couldn’t stop crying. His face was completely barren of emotion, and without a word he knelt down and sliced the ropes keeping her captive. She reached up and pried the clump of grass from her teeth and spat it out with some difficulty, coughing hard.
“Can you walk?” He asked, his rumbling voice deadly calm.
“Master, please!” Alixa begged, sounding hoarse and pathetic even to her own ears.
“It’s all right,” He said, although he sounded completely unconvincing. “Better women than you have been captured by Imps. Are you all right?”
“I’m so sorry Master,” She cried, turning away from him to hide her tears, “Please, please, don’t be angry! I’m so sorry! I was trying to gather ingredients for –“
“I know what you were doing,” Caelum retorted, “but what you neglected to do was recall all of my warnings about Doom Forest. I told you to stay away from it for a reason, Alixa! Do you think I was keeping you safe because I didn’t have anything else better to do? Does anything I say even matter to you at all? Or do you have other things more important to think about than how much I need to protect you?”
He looked down at her, her robes ripped and dirty, tears streaking down her face. She was shaking hard, and he had to make a conscious effort to jerk himself out of his anger. Alixa was an innocent, he knew that – she was a stupid innocent, but good-natured at heart and had been trying to do something for him. He knelt down and helped her up, pushing the sleeve of her dress further up her shoulder. She hugged herself, protecting her modesty, and he shook his head.
“I’m sorry,” He muttered, regretting his outburst already. “That was…” He stopped. Uncalled for? Rude? Cruel? Despicable of him, heaping even more guilt on the poor child?
He didn’t say anything more, and instead began limping back to the tower.