tagErotic HorrorThe Braidwood Affair

The Braidwood Affair

byeidetic©

All Hallows' Eve at the Braidwood House

Author's note: This is my first attempt in the Erotic Horror category, although admittedly I might have put it in Humor & Satire, Group or Nonhuman. In any case, it is also my first entry in a contest, specifically Halloween 2016. As with most of my stories, this one starts out slow, building the background and characters necessary to set up the sexy stuff. I hope you enjoy it and I hope you will give me feedback through comments and voting, especially voting. It gives me a decent idea about how well I am entertaining you, the reader.

* * * * *

I shouldn't be here, he thought. This was a big mistake...

It was bad enough that the old Vicky stood next to the village's original graveyard and that on Halloween the cops would be on the lookout for Juvies out larking. Plus, trespassing -- even on abandoned property -- was still a crime with very few exceptions. Breaking and entering to retrieve proof of his daring wasn't one of the exceptions. But that was exactly what he had to do if he wanted to be accepted.

Accepted into the club, that is. The Norcross Paranormal Mystery and Romance Writers Guild. NPMRWG didn't make a very good acronym, so mostly it was just called The Guild. And he wanted in. Badly.

Stewart Chamblee had dreamed of being a writer since the day they first put a crayon in his hand. He had frustrated parents and teachers alike with his "overactive imagination," as they liked to call it. When he was being honest with himself, he'd admit that he had a hard time seeing the mundane world that the others called "reality." He was always seeing beyond it, seeing innumerable worlds just off in the shadows a bit, full of excitement and adventure. Sometimes there would be a glowing portal and he could walk through it and actually go there, though he always got pulled back somehow. He loved to visit those worlds and see what there was to see.

Sometimes, it scared the shit out of him.

Others might scoff at him, but he believed... he knew... that ghosts and angels and evil spirits existed and couldn't resist the temptation to screw with people's lives. Just like he knew that Klingons and Romulans actually lived outside the imagination of Gene Rodenberry, and that Bram Stoker, Guy Endore and Clemence Housman were chronicling history. He wanted to write the stories of the worlds he knew. To have them accepted, he had to make them seem like paranormal fiction.

So he'd applied for membership in the Guild, because they sponsored up-and-coming writers and helped the greenhorns get connected with legitimate publishers. Their requirements were simple: to submit three examples of his writing for critical review, to submit an essay of not less than 750 words detailing why he wanted to join, and to venture into the heart of the local paranormal hell -- the Braidwood House -- and return with an item proving he'd been there. And not get caught, of course.

This last requirement was intended to weed out the faint of heart and the dispassionate wannabe's who weren't serious about the paranormal. Which is why he was here, scaling the wrought iron fence that surrounded the Braidwood House, scared stiff. To those who believed in the paranormal, trespassing on these grounds was potentially fatal.

And who the hell thought sharp, pointy spikes on the top of the fence would be a good idea, anyway?

Sporting freshly ripped pants and shirt, he lowered himself to the ground, crouched, and looked around.

Suck it up, Stew, he thought to himself. You can do this. You've got to do this. You want in the Guild.

Focusing on that thought, he eased across the spacious grounds toward the three story Victorian mansion looming out of the dark, illuminated by the full moon.

Why did the full moon have to be on Halloween? he thought to himself, annoyed at the implications.

He had come over the fence at the back of the house, away from the cemetery. Less chance of getting noticed. Now, as he moved forward, he realized the outbuilding he was using to cover his approach wasn't the tool shed. It was an ornate mausoleum in the best Gothic tradition.

Shit! was his primary thought. Don't walk on any kind of hallowed ground or anything, Stew! Idiot...

He gave up on hiding and made his way quickly and circuitously to the back porch. The house's foundation was stone. The rest of the house was wood, but not the cheap 2-by-4 construction of today's houses. No, this one had been built to last forever, out of thick timbers and heavy shake siding. Rumor was, Charles F. Braidwood Esq. had the house built for his second wife and had made the frivolous promise that his love for her would last longer than the house did.

It's in pretty good shape for being over a hundred and fifty, he thought. Wonder if he still loves his wife... or wives...

Braidwood had been a railroad tycoon, a robber baron of the mid- to late-1800's, and had built this estate as a retreat, well away from any nearby city, after his first wife died under mysterious circumstances and he had married his second. Apparently, she too had died and he had abandoned the house. It was supposed to be haunted and hence shunned by the locals. It was rumored that some who had entered had never returned.

And I'm standing here like an id... what the fuck was that??? The sound of a rusty hinge echoed across the yard as if amplified by the night. He quickly looked around and saw nothing. Until...

Until he noticed a dark, man-sized shape moving back near the mausoleum. He scrambled to hunker down next to the porch steps and to try and be as invisible as he could.

His heart was going into overdrive as he watched the figure glide... not walk, glide... up the gentle slope from the stone building, directly towards his hiding place.

Stairs. Porch. Bad, he thought as he tried to inch away, back along the stone foundation, hopefully hidden by the globe arborvitae growing there. He lay as flat as possible and watched as the figure approached the stairs. Despite being scared witless, he was stunned to see that the figure was actually a woman, incredibly beautiful, with very pale skin and flowing silver-white hair. The cloak she was wearing suddenly shifted in the night breeze and he received two more shocking realizations.

Okay, she isn't a ghost, he thought as the very real cloak moved in the wind. And my God! What a rack!

Not the most elegant way of thinking it, but he wasn't thinking very clearly anyway. She was, indeed, very well endowed and the form-fitting shimmery dress she wore only emphasized it. Stewart found himself disappointed that the cloak blocked his view of the rest of her. He watched in complete fascination as she mounted the stairs, crossed the porch and approached the back door. On reaching it, she withdrew a key affixed to a chain around her neck and fit it to the lock.

Moments later, he heard the lock click and watched as she opened the latch and stepped in, closing the door behind her.

Oh, my God... who was that??? His mind raced as he tried to bring his heart rate under control. Or what was that? There's somebody living here? How come nobody knows about it?

Many more questions surged through his brain but the uppermost was how the hell do I get in there? I've got to meet that lady!

Not the most brilliant of ideas, given the circumstances, but certainly the one that eighteen-plus years of testosterone poisoning made the most insistent. And the one that got him slowly and carefully creeping out from the bushes and up on to the porch.

The porch wrapped around the back of the house, passing a number of windows on its way to a broad veranda on the left. The back entrance was directly in front of him, and to his right the sweep of the porch was interrupted by what had to be the summer kitchen, extending out on the right. He knew from researching the place in the daytime that the front of the house had a huge wraparound porch with ornate double-doors and a smaller covered entryway to the side that had served the coaches. There was a small coach house in the back, near the cemetery.

There really wasn't any good way to sneak into the house. He started to check the windows facing the porch, to see if they were unlocked, when a loud creak! made him freeze. Fearfully looking towards the door, he saw that it had sprung open a bit.

Probably didn't latch completely when she went in, he thought. Lucky break for me...

Somehow, he didn't hear the more rational and paranoid part of his brain that screamed It's A Trap, You Idiot!!!

Stewart eased over to the door as quietly as he could. Ever so slowly, he pushed the door farther ajar. When it was wide enough open that he could slip in, he did, fishing his penlight from his pocket.

All I have to do is find something that says 'Braidwood' on it and get the fuck out, he thought. His body was still jacked up on adrenaline, but at least his mind started out thinking clearly. So what the hell says 'Braidwood'? Silverware? It'd be locked up somewhere, or gone... what else?

He looked around furtively, and by the feeble illumination of his penlight, found himself in a sort of scullery, with doors leading farther into the house and into the summer kitchen, and also a servants' stairwell leading up and down the back of the house.

This is all too utilitarian, he thought. Anything personalized would be farther into the house. So with his heart pounding in his ears, he eased into the hallway leading towards the front of the house. He realized that he was moving down a long hall and that farther up, there was portraiture on the walls.

Damn! One of those pictures would be perfect! he thought as he started to figure out which one would be the easiest to get out of the house without getting noticed. He had just about decided when he also realized that he was hearing voices. That stopped his plan to nick one of the pictures dead in its tracks.

"I'm sorry I'm late," a decidedly feminine voice was saying. "Without Bruno around to wake me, I overslept."

"That's okay, Victoria," another feminine voice replied. "Next time, if you want, I can come get you."

"Thank you, Marianne," the first voice -- now Victoria -- answered. "I may very well take you up on that. Is Julianna going to make it?"

"I am not sure," a third voice chimed in, with a bit of an accent. "She has said she may be late, or maybe she will not make it at all. We are to go ahead without her." Stewart decide the accent was French, or maybe Cajun.

"Okay, then, Margeaux," Victoria told her. "As soon as we've got our drinks, we can start."

"Very funny," Margeaux answered in a tone that indicated it wasn't. "You know I don't drink."

"Sorry... just teasing," Victoria apologized. "What is tonight?"

"Texas Hold 'Em," Marianne informed her. "Small Blind 5, Big Blind 10, minimum raise 10. Chip in, ladies."

What??? Stewart was dumbfounded. Three women playing poker in a haunted house on Halloween? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, over? He decided to ignore the part about curiosity and what it did to the cat, and eased on down the hall. He really wanted to see this with his own two eyes. Or at least, he thought he did. He wasn't so sure after he stuck his cell phone around the edge of the door jamb so he could see without being seen.

There were three women, alright. Sitting around a table with piles of betting chips and a deck of cards. One was the shimmery lady with the white hair he'd seen going in. There was another shimmery one, except she seemed transparent. And naked. And there was a third one dressed in head-to-toe fur. Other than how weird they looked, they were all decidedly female. Very female. The make-the-trousers-swell kind of very female.

They didn't seem to notice him and kept right on talking while they played.

"The trick-or-treaters don't come to the door anymore," the white lady, Victoria, complained. "Pity..."

"Well, maybe not so much," the furry Marianne observed. "This house was getting a reputation for eating people up. It did make us realize we had to take our hunting elsewhere."

"I told you two a long time ago, you should not eat where you sleep," the transparent Margeaux commented.

"Lucky you," Victoria rejoined. "You don't need to eat. Just metaphysical sustenance."

"Lucky you," Marianne told Victoria. "You only need to drink once every three or four months. I have to eat at least once a month, and sometimes more often."

"That's only because you let yourself get too horny," Victoria told her. "If we kept a couple of donors around, we wouldn't need to go out hunting."

"For that, we would need Julianna," Margeaux interjected. "Our feeding ages our donors much too quickly. She is the only one with the ability to reverse the damage. And she won't stay here."

Stewart Chamblee was as confused, and as excited, and as terrified, as he had ever been in his life. There were certain conclusions about who... or what... these three were that he was trying very hard not to jump to.

"Julianna's time magic is perfect, agreed," Victoria told the others. "But you know she's afraid of staying any one place too long. Call it inherited behaviour. None of the Salem witch descendants are comfortable staying still. They keep moving because they believe it will save their lives. And it doesn't matter that the victims of the Trials weren't actually the witches... just innocent people caught up in the hysteria. Julianna and her folk won't ever settle down again."

"Well, she could stay here more than one night a month," Margeaux complained. "You two can go get fed elsewhere. I have to live off this house's trespassers and the visitors to the cemetery."

"True," Victoria agreed. "You do know, of course, that the human male has been eavesdropping on us?"

"Oh, yes," Margeaux replied brightly. "I'll be inviting him in, in a minute."

Like hell! Stewart thought, turning to grab the portrait and run... and pissing himself.

Mostly because immediately before him a terrifying apparition materialized, the visage of an old crone, twisted and tortured and grotesque, opening it's jaws wide, showing huge fangs, half-bellowing/half-screaming in his face.

He screamed as well, and stumbled backward into the parlor, falling to the floor in front of a settee.

"Hello, boy," Marianne turned her lupine face towards him. "What's your name?"

Stewart couldn't answer. Stewart couldn't move. Stewart could barely breathe while his blood pressure and pulse skyrocketed.

Marianne sniffed the air. "I think he wet himself."

"Probably," Victoria agreed while Margeaux floated over to him.

Holy shit, holy shit, HOLY SHIT! is what Stewart would have been thinking, if he were thinking at all, which he wasn't.

"Young. Reasonably healthy. Above average package. Libido off the charts. Scared shitless," Margeaux cataloged as she hovered over him. His wide-eyed stare and labored breathing were his only response.

"Hmmm..." Margeaux went on. "Came looking for proof he'd been here. Must be that writers' club. Wants to... oh!" She paused in her musings.

"What?" Victoria asked. "What is 'oh!'?"

"This one is gifted," Margeaux told her. "Not an adept, yet, but definitely better than a mundane. He is actually sensitive to paranormal metaphysics. He wants to write about what he knows, but must present it as fiction if it is to sell. He believes we exist."

"Of course we exist!" Marianne jumped in. "Very real, very hungry and very horny! Not a good night to be food!"

"Now, now, Marianne..." Victoria tried to calm her down. "We don't need to be hasty. Let us see what he has to offer us, first."

"Not much, without Julianna here," Marianne groused, but settled down.

"That would imply he'd be very tasty, Margeaux?" Victoria asked, turning to her.

"Mais oui! Yes," she agreed. "And very filling."

I'm dead, I'm dead, I'm dead... Stewart's brain had finally come back online. What the fuck are they?

"What the fuck are we?" Margeaux echoed and Stewart had the sickening realization that she could read his mind. "We are three, usually four, good friends who could very much use your services."

Stewart's brain was spinning. No way! It wanted to insist. No way was there a vampire and a werewolf and a ghost hanging out together, pretty as you please, playing cards in an old Victorian mansion. And no way was there a Salem witch, too.

"Yes, way..." Margeaux commented, leaving him even more confused.

"You ought to take those pants off, boy," Marianne told him with a slight growl. "And wash up. You stink."

"I'll take care of it," Victoria told her calmly as she rose from the table and now, sans cloak, had Stewart's complete and undivided attention. Well, divided, maybe. Between her rather bountiful assets.

She had a classic hourglass figure with huge boobs, a tiny waist and well-rounded hips and ass, all barely covered by a thin sheet of shimmery, silk-like fabric which clung to her every curve and accentuated all of her positives. The dress plunged front and back, revealing massive cleavage and baring her midriff almost to her pubes. Her long white hair hung down to her knees and swirled about her as she now walked over to where Stewart was on the floor by the settee.

"What is your name, young man?" she asked, squatting down in front of him and damn near putting him into cardiac arrest as her cleavage became his primary focus. He tried to make his mouth work, but it wouldn't. Victoria sighed, stood up, bent over (exacerbating the cardiac problem), put a finger under his chin and lifted him to his feet.

He was still staring at her boobs.

She sighed again, leaned in and kissed him. To an outside observer, it would appear that he melted.

Actually, to an inside observer it would have seemed the same. A highly charged tingle of sexual excitement spread from his lips throughout his body and every cell came alive with it. Overloaded with it. The eyes that had been bugged out moments before slowly closed, his breathing evened though still ragged, his knees got weak and his cock got hard. All pretty much at the same time.

As Victoria broke the kiss, Margeaux started, "his name is..." but Victoria interrupted her.

"Ah, ah, ah!" she wagged her finger at Margeaux. "Let him answer for himself."

"But you've tranced him!" the ghostly girl objected, then actually seemed to pout. "Oh, alright..."

"We would like to know your name, young man," Victoria repeated. Somehow, Stewart found his voice.

"Stewart, ma'am," he managed to say in a dreamlike way. "Stewart Morgan Chamblee, at your service."

"At my service..." Victoria echoed with a thin smile playing on her face. "I'll bet. Why are you here, Stewart Morgan Chamblee?"

"To serve you," he answered, his eyes still closed and his voice still dreamy.

"Before you were fascinated by us," Victoria corrected herself. "Why did you come here tonight?"

"To prove I'm worthy," he answered simply.

"Hmmm... the writers' group?" she asked.

"The Norcross Paranormal Mystery and Romance Writers Guild, ma'am," he answered slowly and steadily.

"Victoria," Margeaux interrupted, still pouting, "I can tell you all of this..."

"Hush," Victoria suggested softly. "It's more fun if he tells us himself."

"Oh, foutaise!..." the ghost mumbled and drifted away.

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