Danica Pt. 19byDarkniciad©
This story is erotic fantasy, set in a world of magic. I reserve the right to be listed as the author of this work, wherever it is posted. If found posted anywhere except Literotica.com with this note attached, this story is posted without my permission. © Darkniciad 2000-2007
The sexual situations in this story will be far ranging, and may prove disturbing to some readers. Please be warned that the villains of the story are really evil, and the things they do are not glossed over, or toned down.
I make use of modern weights and measures quite often in my work, because those are the weights and measures of my fantasy world. I know many fantasy readers prefer more archaic terms, and I hope those readers can overlook my use of miles, feet, and other such measures.
Please note that the form of witchcraft in my world is not meant to be true Wicca. Nor is it supposed to follow "Charmed" exactly. No offence or confusion is intended.
You really need to read the previous parts of the story to know the characters and the storyline. This tale follows Danica in her day-to-day adventures, with the greater plot emerging slowly at first. Think of it more as a serial than a novel, and you'll be in the right mindset.
This is an edited version of this tale, making use of what I've learned since starting to post at Literotica, and the services of my tireless editor, Roust Writer.
Gaeaye sat dangling her shapely legs in a pristine brook, her lush body covered only by her dark hair, which would have hung down to her knees if she were standing. The scent of flowers – every flower known in the world – filled the air. A gentle breeze rustled the leaves of the trees surrounding the stream. Birds sang in those trees, and a fawn drank a few feet away from Gaeaye, untroubled by her presence. No man or god could have conceived a place more serene and peaceful.
Yet her face was troubled.
Inclining her head for a moment, the goddess known as the Earth Mother answered a call from Braeland, God of the Hunt, allowing him admittance into her realm.
He stood behind her in the sun-dappled meadow a moment later. Dressed in the brown and green of a huntsman with a longbow slung over his shoulder, he seemed an alien presence in this land where the animals held no fear. "Mother, do you feel it?"
Smiling for just a moment as a school of fry tickled her feet, Gaeaye replied, "We all feel it, Braeland. Something was taken from us when the stars aligned in the sky."
"But what? I feel as if a great darkness grows, and we are blind to the source."
"Listen, Braeland, do you not hear them? The heavens and hells are in turmoil. Something beyond us – beyond the mother of us all – has awakened. Something from the time before has been roused from its slumber."
Braeland moved to stand next to Gaeaye, concern obvious in his voice, "How is this possible?"
"All things are possible, Braeland. When mother's jewels divided the cloak of night, the power of all was strong. A pathway to the time before was opened, and it has awakened its own."
"What are we to do? This cannot be. That which was before would rend all creation."
Turning toward her visitor, Gaeaye advised, "Only if it is freed."
"If it has awakened, it will call to the mortals. They know not the danger and could be deceived."
"It is not unopposed. The signs revealed this prophecy to us, though we ignored them. Remember the prophecy. Even in the time before, so alien to us all, there was a balance."
Braeland exclaimed, "We must be the balance!"
The fawn drinking from the stream raised its head, ears pricked to the wind. Above, the sound of birdsong vanished. A voice emerged from behind the gods, where none should have stood to speak, "You are a part of it."
Spinning and pulling his longbow from his shoulder, knocking an arrow in the same fluid motion, Braeland turned upon the source of the voice.
Gaeaye vanished from where she sat, appearing beside Braeland and placing a hand upon his arm. "Do no violence in my realm. I sense no threat from this one."
Braeland released the draw of his bow slowly, reluctantly obeying the order of Gaeaye in this, her realm.
Gaeaye stepped forward. "Welcome, mortal, to my place of peace."
The man's voice was sonorous, and his tone respectful, if not reverent. "Thank you for your wise forbearance, Earth Mother."
Gaeaye tilted her head, the action revealing the swell of her breast. She then asked, "How is it that I do not know you?"
Toying with his iron-grey goatee, hints of a haughty smile crossed the mortal's face. "You do not know me for the same reason you have forgotten Zoraster Arias, as he calls himself now."
Braeland asked, "And what shall we call you, intruder?"
Smoothing his dark purple robes, the man offered a mocking bow and replied, "How remiss of me not to introduce myself, God of the Hunt. I am Rogan Illiciat. I serve that which opposes Zoraster and the darkness he seeks to free."
"I know you," Braeland said, narrowing his eyes.
Illiciat pulled the hood of his robe over his bald head, "Through those who serve you, as you may know Zoraster and those who serve him once more if you but concentrate. The eyes of mortals are unaffected by the powers. You are part of the balance, as are all who would see creation remain as it is now."
Despite another calming touch of Gaeaye's hand, Braeland retorted, "I cannot see into your heart and mind – how are we to know you do not serve the darkness?"
The haughty smile reemerged on Illiciat's face. "Such is irrelevant. I have given you the information you require to play your part in this game." Turning to Gaeaye, he added, "One more thing I will tell you, Earth Mother. You must heal the rift with the Fey."
Having spoken those words, Illiciat simply vanished as if he had never been.
Braeland turned to the nature goddess and said, "I do not trust this mortal, if he is indeed such."
"Once he may have been mortal, but no longer. He wields the power of Sorcery, and indeed the touch of that which was before is upon him. I must think on this, but I find wisdom in his instruction regarding the Fey. Our quarrel with them is selfish, based only upon the fact that they fall outside our sphere of influence. They are the balance to the Hellspawn, who will surely flock to the darkness, and we would do well to heal the rift with them."
Braeland furrowed his brow, considering the Earth Mother's words. "Perhaps, at least in that, he may speak truth."
"Tell the others of this Zoraster, as will I. If his presence is hidden from our eyes, he bears watching through those who serve us."
"As does this Illiciat," Braeland insisted.
"As does he," Gaeaye agreed.
Danica awoke to the odd sensation that an oppressive fog was hanging over her. Slipping into the second sight, she examined her wards and the magic present in the room, seeing nothing out of the ordinary. When she shook off the last vestiges of sleep, the strange feeling went with it.
It did nothing to remove Danica's worries.
The convergence had occurred the night before, and Danica's dreams had been troubled. Strange visions of mists, demons and danger had haunted her throughout the night. She had no idea whether the dreams were a product of the foul magic the Seer had said would happen, or her own subconscious concerns about the prophecy.
In the process of learning all the new spells from the temple of Sekmamun, and her recent research into demon-countering Art, something had been nagging at the back of Danica's mind. The protective magics she had always depended upon to defend her had proven useless against Meckataur's powers.
Rune magic was the thing that kept popping into her mind. Ever since her encounter with the worktable that had opened her mind to the runes, Danica had grown ever more proficient in their use. Now that she had mastered all the magic she felt was within her range for the time being, Danica was considering the possibility of creating some runic defenses. Runes might be able to protect her from the powers of demons, as well as other magics that didn't conform to the norms of the Art.
Danica only mused over the thoughts slightly as she bathed and ate, saving that for when she stepped into her lab afterwards. Sitting down at a desk, she retrieved a pen and paper, and then started to consider things in earnest.
A few sketches quickly let her know that, while possible, making some sort of amulet or other item and inscribing it with runes had limitations. She could only make details on such an item so small, and that limited the amount of protections such an item could provide. It would certainly have no space to contain offensive magic, although she could have created a wand or staff to house those sorts of powers.
Thinking back to her time on the island, and more specifically of the Nameless Ones, an idea occurred to Danica. Sigla had covered the zombies, essentially for show, but it did spark an idea that might work. There was plenty of space on one's body that could provide the canvas on which to draw many powerful rune structures.
The idea of defacing her body with runes, and the difficulty of doing so without help, didn't really have a lot of appeal to Danica, however. There was a solution to this as well, involving both a spell she had never really considered worth much effort, and a magical type of ink.
The spell, known as Reflection's Servant, allowed the caster to slip into a state of concentration and obtain a viewpoint as if they were outside their body. It was somewhat similar to astral projection, except the spell did not actually cause the caster to vacate their body. The spell also allowed the hazy image of oneself that the spell created as the caster's alternate viewpoint to manipulate objects in the physical world.
The notes about the spell listed removing offensive hair from the back as one of the possible uses of the spell. Considering how out of place it seemed with the remainder of the suggested uses, Danica considered it likely that this was the true reason for the spell's creation.
Considering the similarities to astral projection and telekinesis, which was very similar to how the spell manipulated physical objects, Danica felt she would be able to command the spell with the high level of mastery necessary to tattoo her body with runes. An incorrectly drawn rune was a dangerous thing, and something as permanent as a tattoo was not the sort of thing you wanted to make a mistake with, even if it were invisible.
Invisibility was the property of the ink, created for use in secret documents, only appearing under certain conditions. Otherwise, anything written with the ink vanished until called into visibility by the circumstances dictated during the making of the ink. Danica would have no need for the ink to be visible once the runes were finished, but knew it was likely the tattoos would be visible when the magic activated. The stronger the rune structure, the more likely it was to glow with power when activated.
The final problem was finding a way to draw the structures upon her body without Zoraster finding out about it. Danica had no desire to reveal what she knew about runes to Zoraster. While the structures she used in the defenses protecting her rooms bespoke a great deal of skill, they were a far cry from what she truly understood. It felt as if some new property or use of the runes appeared in her mind daily, and to Danica it seemed that understanding of rune magic grew exponentially after she obtained a certain level of mastery. Once you could recognize the patterns of runes and the way they fit together in structures, it became easier every day.
Danica discarded the idea of using the inner library at the temple of Sekmamun as a location, because it was not a private spot. She would need to be in various states of undress to draw the runes upon her skin, and the nature of the Reflection's Servant spell would make it difficult for her to quickly banish the spell and cover up if necessary. Danica had no shame about her body, but she wasn't pleasantly disposed toward alarming people who walked in upon her half-naked when they should have no reason to find such.
The numerous other places where Zoraster could not spy upon her had similar problems. The Spell Engine was one place that was completely private, but it would suck up her spell the instant it came into being.
Consideration of the Spell Engine provided her with the solution, the Hellgate. Danica could force time to move differently inside the pocket of space created by the spell. Inside, she could spend hours laboring over her tattoos, while only moments passed in the real world. She had to consider the demons within the Hellgate's space, but Danica was truly unconcerned about them, as she had been able to control them rather effectively in the two trips with Heather and Grant.
Danica still didn’t know whether she would go through with the idea, but she certainly found that she leaned toward undertaking the task. For the time being, learning the Reflection's Servant spell was a necessary step, and it could possibly prove useful for other things.
The Master of the school where she and her sister had first studied had once told her, Magic is a subtle art, and even the most innocuous spell can prove to be of great value under the correct circumstances.
Danica had not given much weight to the statement, even well into her adult life, but had learned the truth of it since she had fallen into Zoraster's trap. Simple telekinesis, which she had always been good at but thought was all but useless, had saved her life more than once on her tasks.
Smiling at memories of her teen years struggling to learn magic, Danica made the decision to at least learn the spell, and then decide about the rest later.
Celes had taken advantage of the power offered by the convergence, as had Zoraster. The magic Celes utilized was no less important to her, but far less earth shattering. She had used the power of the convergence to alter the enchantments upon her toy. Before, an image of Andrea lapped her when she used the toy, but now Danica's auburn locks brushed against Celes' thighs when the magic was active.
The power of the convergence had also strengthened the power of the illusion. When Celes had strapped on the toy to test it following a short recovery period after casting the spell, she found that the illusion was so vivid it was difficult to believe that Danica was not actually between her legs, driving her to unbelievable heights of ecstasy. She had even been able to reach out and stroke those auburn curls, feeling them between her fingers, clenched in orgasm.
The toy lay on the nightstand, unwashed, and Celes lay naked in her bed, covered in the sticky evidence of her pleasure. She had barely been able to summon up the energy to remove the toy before collapsing into slumber.
Celes' desire flared again as she awakened, remembering the wonderful release, several times over, that the newly enhanced toy had given her the night before. She nearly reached for the toy to slide it over her loins once more, but stopped when she decided that becoming too addicted to the pleasure was unhealthy.
Rising with a sigh, Celes went to her bath, taking the toy with her to clean it as well. She had to fight the desire to use it the whole time, the feeling only fading when she put the toy away in the nightstand drawer and got it out of her sight.
Celes had gathered, with some trepidation, what little information she could find about witchcraft. There was much that was conjecture and rumor, but Celes remembered just enough of her mother's teachings that she thought she could determine what was true and what was false.
Now that she was stuck with her powers and her destiny once more, Celes decided that she should learn as much as she could about her powers. The conversation with Danica about the demon Meckataur had leant strength to this consideration in Celes' mind. Witchcraft was ultimately a weapon to defend against and destroy Hellspawn.
At least in the hands of a good witch.
A witch that turned to self-gain, or any other number of human fallibilities, became a tool of the very creatures the craft existed to combat. Demons took great delight in encouraging witches to turn, because it not only eliminated a dangerous enemy, it also provided them with tools to further their own desires.
Sitting down with one of the books, Celes took the first step in a long journey toward making up for lost time.
Zoraster waved his hands, and all the mirrors in his scrying room went dark. Everything was proceeding exactly as planned. Everyone and everything was in place, or would be soon. Stepping out of the room, he found Camilla waiting for him in the hall.
"Master, men from Draxnog wish to speak with you."
Zoraster rolled his eyes and sighed, "Send them to my sitting room and see that their comfort is provided for. I will await them there."
Strolling toward his rarely used sitting room, Zoraster sneered. He knew why the fools were coming – they sought more coin to build their armies. If the idiot Draxnog had not relied so heavily upon the slave labor of the plains barbarians, the nation would not be in the straits it was now. As it was, Zoraster propped up the economy of the entire nation by funding most of the military spending, a necessity if Draxnog was going to be of any use to him when the time came.
He needed that nation's forces to contend with Egoria, the nation carved from lands once occupied by Draxnog, by Thakkorias and his intrepid band of do-gooders. Draxnog had his faults, but his strength was in his hatred of the annoying cretins in Egoria that presented one of the two most significant threats to his plans. Zoraster needed those armies on the southern front when the time came to neutralize Egoria.
The coin was of no real concern; Zoraster had more sources to obtain that than he could ever hope to spend. Dealing with the annoying southerners, with their ridiculous accents, simply grated on his nerves.
Zoraster smiled thinking about the ultimate culmination of his plans, however. Draxnog would be one of the casualties in the war to come. While Zoraster was far from above using atrocity as a tool when necessary, Draxnog and his armies considered it a pleasurable diversion. Slavery, theft, murder, rape – all were weapons in Zoraster's hands, but they were the means to abolish such abominations in the perfect world he intended to rule.
Sending a silent thought ensured that the necessary funds would be ready immediately, and the brown-skinned beggars Draxnog had sent would be gone as quickly as possible. Walking in to the sitting room, Zoraster eased into a thickly padded chair and waited for Camilla to lead the smelly southerners in.
Meckataur's muzzle split into a wide grin as Arleen presented him with his spawn. The child looked human, large for a newborn, but absolutely human. Only the glint of intelligence and malevolence in the dark eyes of the child revealed his evil parentage.
That would end soon enough. The child would grow rapidly, provided the brood mare who had carried it survived long enough to nurse it for the required few days.
Arleen took the child to the crèche, which Meckataur soon hoped would hold many more of his spawn, and turned his eyes to Mopario, who prayed over the unconscious and mangled woman who had just delivered the child.
Mopario was high in his god's favor, and the wide splits torn in the woman's nether regions during the birth healed.