tagNonHumanIt's Always Time Act 04 Ch. 02

It's Always Time Act 04 Ch. 02


Act Four: Food for Thought

Chapter Two: Take Me Down

Author's note: This chapter uses some unconventional formatting for some rather unconventional dialog.

* * * *

The bronze bell above the glass door jangled and tolled. The door remained unmoved.

The rose girl watched the bell jounce about. "Someone's coming."

Tomoe did not look up from the fat Sudoku puzzle book. "Mm." Her pencil skittered across the open page.

The rose girl sighed and hopped off the countertop. As she padded barefoot up to the front door, a copper-colored, one-piece dress sprouted out from her waist to clothe her translucent, cut-crystal flesh. The bell jerked around like a jumping bean. She smoothed out the oblong lump between her legs, swung the door wide, and stood in the threshold. She surveyed the empty parking lot. "They're a long way off. An hour, maybe?" The bell continued to clatter above her head. "This damn thing won't shut up."

"Yeah, yeah." Tomoe flipped the page. She harrumphed at the next grid of math puzzles, chewed on the pencil, then shrugged and started to fill in the empty boxes. "Piece of cake."

"So?" The rose girl turned about face. "Who is it?"

"Whoever it is," Tomoe said, "they're going to have to wait."


Tomoe wagged her hand over the puzzle book. "I'm not finished yet." She made a fist and bonked herself lightly on the head. "Duh!"

The rose girl stepped back into the store. The bell rang louder while the door closed. She tiptoed over to the counter, the bell chattering in the background. "Why do you still keep secrets from me, lovey?" she asked, sifting Tomoe's shining black hair through fingers of polished rose quartz.

Still writing with one hand, Tomoe reached up with the other and pulled the rose girl's palm against her cheek. "SB, do you want to be my partner, my darling, my cheeseburger?" Their eyes met. "Or my familiar, my slave?"

"I felt like a slave last night, cleaning and dragging those stupid dumpsters around."

Tomoe gave the rose girl's hand a friendly but firm squeeze. "Seriously, now: slave or cheeseburger?"

The rose girl's smile was full of diamonds. "I want to be your cheeseburger, T, whatever that means. Unless I can be your slave and still get on top, that'd be kind of hot."

Tomoe returned to her book. "Then let me have my secrets. That way you can get miffed at me, like you are now." She tilted forward, gathered a handful of the silk of the coppery dress, and squeezed it around the lump in the rose girl's crotch in long, unhurried strokes. "And I can make it up to you."

* * * *

"Take the next exit," Dee said, collecting shards of glass from the window frame into a plastic pouch he had found in the Jeep's glove compartment.

Yves surveyed the empty stretches of overgrown lots on either side of the elevated highway. "We're in the middle of fucking nowhere."

"This is it," Dee insisted, "I'm certain."

"That's not what I'm worried about," Yves said. The Jeep careened through the tight curve of the exit ramp.

Ursula sat on her knees, ass-backward on the backseat, keeping watch out the rear window. "I haven't seen anything for at least twenty minutes now."

"Of course," Eurydice added, contemplating Ursula's jean-wrapped rear-end, "we don't know what we're looking for."

"Right at the end of the ramp," Dee told Yves. "Go under the overpass. Maybe we lost it."

The Jeep emerged from beneath the overpass, roaring down the grayed pavement of the back road. In the side mirror, Yves watched the shadow beneath the arch of the overpass seem to peel away from the cement and swoop into the air. "Unless," he sighed, stomping on the accelerator pedal, "it's smart enough to ambush us when we do something cosmically stupid like getting off the highway in the middle of fucking—"

The rear window flashed black. Ursula shrieked and ducked but the fluttering darkness swooped up and out of sight. The wind whistled through the broken passenger-side window. Ursula spun around, frantic, latching her seatbelt in place. Yves, Dee, and Eurydice looked at one another.

The obsidian girl touched down onto the hood. She made no sound.

She crouched before the windshield, arms splayed, the manifold curvature of her wings flared out wide on either side, blocking any view of the road ahead. She shone in the cloudless, morning sunlight, a living architecture of blackest volcanic glass. Dee and Yves' awestruck expressions were reflected back at them in the featureless, glossy tar oval of her face.

Yves recovered, found his center, and hammered down on the brake. The obsidian girl bled off the excess momentum into her wings, letting them unfold behind her in topologies that confused the eye. The Jeep's tires squealed and burned in the sudden deceleration but the obsidian girl perched unfazed on the hood. She waggled her pointer finger from side to side in a metronomic rhythm.

The speedometer's needle dropped below the fifty miles per hour mark and Dee popped open the passenger door. "Get them out of here," he said, and rolled out of the car. Eurydice screamed his name. The speedometer needle hit the thirty miles per hour mark.

Dee hit the pavement elbow-first. The asphalt cracked and burst and bounced him a foot back up into the air. The obsidian girl punched her knuckles against the hood and swung after him, wings rippling behind her in billows of ebony ink.

Eurydice snarled, "He's mine, you fucking gimp," and sprung out the still-open door, a bounding wildcat. The speedometer needle fell under ten miles per hour.

Ursula rebounded off her seatbelt. A swinging braid knocked her glasses clean off her face. "Um. What the Hell just happened?"

The passenger-side door fell off.

"I'm getting you out of here," Yves said. The rear tire kicked against the fallen door as the Jeep pulled away.

"No, you're not." Ursula fumbled her glasses back onto her face. "But, uh, we're getting out of this car. Right now."

Yves glanced into the rearview mirror. Ursula nodded her head toward the rear side window. A little gush of viscid, lavender fluid ran down from the roof like spilt shampoo. "Yeah, I guess we'd better." Yves pulled the Jeep over to the curb, wincing at how false his nonchalance sounded to his own ears.

A fount of creamy champagne poured over the lip of the Jeep's canvas top through the gaping hole left by the lost door. A confusion of golden hues—marigold, saffron, school-bus yellow—filled the passenger-side front seat. The air inside the car grew heady with the dizzying bouquet of caramel and melted creamsicle. The storm of melted sherbet made little sound, just a satiny susurrus, as more and more of the lush stuff piled into the bucket seat, drew itself up, and filled itself out and then further out.

"You can't leave yet, honey" purred the plump amber woman, "I haven't even started to sing."

* * * *

Eurydice bounded onto the pavement with arms outstretched and her back arched high. She brought her legs down with her knees bent the wrong way. Only wrong if you plan on being a biped, she thought, running with a sinewy, feline gate. Ahead of her, Dee skimmed the road as he tumbled, the asphalt rumpling beneath him like the surface of a lake under a skipping stone. Solid boy's giving the road a case of road-rash.

Despite Eurydice's cheetah speed, the obsidian girl's powerhouse wings won the race. For a few seconds Dee and the obsidian girl danced in a horizontal, martial ballet, Dee feinting even as he fell. The obsidian girl played the game just as well, counter-feinting with scissor kicks and dancing pseudopodia, and Dee disappeared down a funnel of enfolding wings. A host of clashing emotions welled up in Eurydice's jumbled mind-web: panic, fear, fear for Dee, fury--jealousy. This is jealousy, she realized, watching the obsidian girl cocoon Dee until the two of them rolled over the road like a giant, licorice jelly bean. Why am I jealous? She's trying to kill him! The black ovoid rocked as it slowed. Isn't she?

Eurydice slid to halt on all fours as the ovoid cracked open. Layers of liquid black wing peeled away and Dee struggled to his feet. He bucked and flexed, trying every goojitsu trick Eurydice knew, and then a few she did not know, to shake his opponent loose. The obsidian girl clung to him, head buried in his chest, her arms hooked under his in a desperate but chaste hug.

Dee flushed and floundered in the obsidian girl's embrace. "Gerroff me!"

* * * *

A wicked, single-edge blade appeared in Yves' hand in the time it took Ursula to blink. She had learned enough about her upstairs neighbor these past few hours to know he had his own brand of macho bullshit—Yves will never back down when he's afraid—and now she watched it kick into gear as he raised the weapon high. In her peripheral vision, a second trickle of translucent purplish goo seeped down the side window.

The amber woman raised her pudgy, open hands close to her head at a "raise-the-roof!" angle. She had a stout neck and a roll of double chin that wobbled as she chuckled, "Whoa, cowboy." Ursula could not place the drawn-out twang in the amber woman's accent. Boston? Virginia? New York? "Does this look like a combat chassis to you?"

The amber woman primped her coiffure, a lick of golden pudding plastered atop her head. Her hip spilled over the bucket seat and smothered the emergency brake and gear shift. "Besides," she said, "you'd get a lot further with an ice-cream scoop than that knife." The surface of her substance was mellow yellow and satiny, like whipped frosting, with no elastic tension to hold her together. She churned perpetually, inside and out, in a constant, slow boil of luscious mush. "I'm not a stick of butter, I'm buttercream."

Yves lowered the blade but kept it ready at his side. "I don't think I can take much more of this kind of thing."

A purple glaze shellacked the window to Ursula's side. "We've got another guest on the roof, Yves," Ursula said.

A muffled but acid voice razzed down from above the Jeep's canvas top. "Put a cork in your cakehole, you cunt, or you'll ruin my entrance."

"You've done that all by yourself, honey," the amber woman sighed. "The things that come out of your mouth are positively criminal."

"Got that right, fatso," said the voice. The purple glop gumming the window slurped up and out of sight. "Things should be coming in my mouth."

The amber woman treated Ursula to a conspiratorial wink of a canary diamond eye. "I spoon feed her straight lines out of charity." Her face was wide but regal and carved from lemon meringue. "Poor girl wouldn't notice a double entendre if it came with cherry on top."

An elfin, lavender face popped into view, upside down, in Yves' window. "I don't get it." Her hair tumbled around her head, an unruly mass of pale orchid petals. She shouted at Yves through the glass. "Hi! Wanna fuck?"

Yves reddened and spluttered. Before he could recover, the amber girl came to his rescue. "No, honey," she said, sizing Yves up like a piece of meat. "This tall drink of water is a man's man."

"Well, fuck me gently with a chain saw," the lavender girl said. "No wonder that Black Cherry twat is out of her gourd. 'Master' is gay." She spat the word "master" as if it were the crudest, most vile thing she could ever think to say.

"I'm not Dee," Yves said.

The lavender girl crooked her upside-down head to eye the back seat, captivating Ursula with her inhuman, ethereal beauty until she opened her mouth. "Who's the dinky-dyke?"

"I came with the car," Ursula grouched.

"Hey, me too," the lavender girl said, slopping down onto the pavement in a spray of indigo. "But only when your nancy chauffeur drove above sixty." She stood, tall and haughty and nude, the lips of her pouty sex peeking out from a frill of orchid petals in her cleft just as the tapered tips of her ears poked from her dryad's mane.

Ursula thought the lavender girl looked the part of the honey nymph more than Eurydice or even Galatea. I could fall in love with something like that, Ursula realized, tracing the lines of the lavender girl's classical figure, if she'd only stay quiet. The lavender girl looked around and did a quick double take. No, no. Her mouth gaped open. Not yet. Her vulgar purple nipples hardened into cherry-pits. Hush, now, and let me drink you in. Dew dampened the insides of her thighs. Let me memorize....

"Oh, sweet merciful mother of fuck," the lavender girl marveled as Dee approached. "I'm creaming in my jeans."


The amber woman shifted in the front seat as Dee drew near. "Oh my, now that is emotion in motion."

Ursula strained to see. Dee steamrolled toward the Jeep, falling into his unstoppable, predatory march. Ursula felt a flutter deep within her. It was a visceral but not a truly sexual thrill, like riding the crest of a rollercoaster. She remembered feeling it once before, when Dee emerged with Eurydice in his arms, and a small spark of it even earlier, when he had set up her computer.

"Can you get her to let go of me?" Dee asked the lavender girl. "I'm fine, really."

The obsidian girl, her geodesic wings compactly folded against her shoulders, stood on Dee's feet with her hands latched onto his back. I used to dance with my father just like that, Ursula remembered, and the recollection somehow shocked her.

The amber woman slipped sideways out of the car, legs oozing down and taking shape as she rolled. She moved by relaxing and letting her bulk fill the space of her destination. Like an amoeba, she simply grew in the direction she wanted to go, lending her an alien but smooth and mesmerizing grace. "Ask her yourself, honey," the amber woman told Dee. "Or better yet, say you're sorry. You were the one who took one look at her and jumped from a moving car."

"He thought he was protecting his friends from her," Eurydice said, padding on all fours around Dee from behind, a jade sphinx with Medusa's hairdo. "From you."

Eurydice's appearance woke the lavender girl out of her horny reverie. "Jesus Christ, it's a lime, get in the car!" The lavender girl vaulted over the Jeep's hood, one cheek of her perfect ass squeaking on the silver metal, planting herself between Eurydice and the amber woman, arms upraised like a traffic cop's. "Get the fuck back into the fucking car, CeeCee," she hissed to the amber girl before turning to Eurydice. "Look, limey, we didn't come here looking for a catfight."

Ursula pushed the passenger seat forward. She nodded to Yves and clambered out of the Jeep. Yves hopped out the driver's side door, putting the car in park but leaving the engine running.

"We figured you weren't gunning for a fight when little Miss Midnight here tried to save my life," Dee said, patting the obsidian girl on her featureless pate. She snuggled in even closer. "Now how do I get her off?" Eurydice flashed him a leonine glare and he mutterred, "Um, wow, that didn't come out right..."

"Quiet, you," Eurydice huffed. She pawed a hole Dee left in the pavement and turned back to the lavender girl. "So, whose side are you on, then?"

"Ours," said the amber woman, CeeCee.

"Not hers," the lavender girl added sourly.

The obsidian girl snuggled.

"I'm confused," Ursula said, maneuvering around the amber woman with the curves of pin-up girl from the Forties but the girth of a professional football linebacker. The obsidian girl prised her head away from Dee's chest and pivoted her shoulders in Ursula's direction. Ursula looked into the obsidian girl's blank face and saw only her own convex reflection gazing back at her, as if the obsidian girl had put on an Ursula mask. "I'm confused," she repeated, unsettled. "'Her' who? I'm having pronoun trouble."

Yves answered her. "Cherry Cupcake." He worked his knife into a pouch below the armpit of his undershirt. "She made you?"

"Black Cherry made her," CeeCee said, gesturing to the obsidian girl.

The lavender girl reached back to wrap a protective arm around CeeCee. It sank into the rich batter of CeeCee's shoulders. "The psycho-twat made Eddie make us. Oops, shit, I'm stuck in you again."

"What can I say, honey," CeeCee cooed as the currents of velvet-soft flesh dragged the lavender girl closer and deeper into CeeCee's side, "we go together well."

The obsidian girl stepped down and away from Dee. She still wore Ursula's face but did not say a word. Not counting the wings, Ursula thought, she's no taller than I am. Why is she staring at me? Wait, that's just my reflection, which means I'm the one staring at her. Oh, great, now I can see myself blushing.

Yves sidled in front of the Jeep, never turning his back to the group of goo girls. "I don't understand. Who's Eddie?"

The lavender girl's arm sucked into CeeCee's side until the two goo girls stood shoulder to shoulder. "Your tits are even softer on the inside," the lavender girl told CeeCee. "What does this feel like?" The lavender girl rolled her shoulder, tongue peeking out between her teeth. She gave a little yelp and squished into CeeCee, head-to-toe.

The obsidian girl skipped forward. Ursula backpedaled, keeping a few paces away. The obsidian girl flourished a wing, and Ursula could not help but follow its tip with her eyes as it traced over trim, inky black flesh, the long line of a willowy neck to narrow shoulders to budding breasts to a flat tummy to—Snap! Snap! The obsidian girl's fingers snapped together, loud as pistol shots. Ursula dragged her eyes back up into the obsidian girl's face, the Ursula-mask face.

Licks of sunny yellow crawled over lavender hips. "It feels so good," CeeCee said, "you'd better pull out or you're coming in."

"All the way?" the lavender girl asked, watching a creamy tendril swirl between her breasts.




"Hm," the lavender girl hummed. She glanced at their audience. Yves, Dee, and Eurydice seemed struck dumb by the display of the golden web spinning across her body, coiling around her nipples and vanishing into the cleft of her sex. "What about—Ooh!—saving the world?"

The obsidian girl inched forward. Ursula's blush deepened but she stood her ground. A gentle wave rippled up from the obsidian girl's neck and her face dusked into a matte black. The Ursula-mask vanished. Yes, Ursula thought as the obsidian girl's wings excited the air, I'm still staring. The obsidian girl held a hand out for her. I'm staring at you, not the me-in-you. Ursula tentatively reached for those smooth, conical fingers. I want to touch you, not the me-in-you.

"That was short, dark, and creepy's idea," CeeCee said. "But it looks like she's found something else to think about now."

"Wait." Ursula spun around. "What? Saving the world?" In her peripheral vision, Ursula saw the obsidian girl smack herself in the forehead and stalk away. "The world needs saving?"

"Break it up," Eurydice snarled, "and make with the exposition."

CeeCee and the lavender girl pulled apart, purple-red-gold filaments and filigree unraveling and snapping. Yves looked ready to retch but would not look away as they rewove themselves. "Start from the beginning," he gulped, "and don't do that again."

When the lavender girl's surface tension sealed over her nectarous insides she intoned, "In the beginning." She looked into the Sun. "In the beginning there was this..." She opened her arms to the sky "...There was this biiiig refrigerator."

"What the Hell is this," Yves demanded, "goo girl religion?"

"No," Dee said. "She's being literal. Going back to her first memory. Hey, Yves, you look like crap. You okay?"

"Yeah," Yves puffed, "I will be, yeah. This is just a lot of goo for me, right now. Sorry," he told the lavender girl. "So you were in a refrigerator."

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