By Anya.Richards On Jul 24 2011, 8:00 am
Long before Steven King or Dean Koontz there were…fairytales.
But these weren’t the sanitized, feel-good stories we grew up on, where granny was locked in the back room instead of eaten, or the Prince always saved the day. Usually there were no happy-ever-afters. I’m talking the original stories, full of violence, sexual innuendo and consequences such as having to cut your feet off so as to be able to stop dancing. These were the original cautionary tales, meant to frighten those who might think of straying right back on to the straight and narrow.
In the Enchanted anthology, you’ll find stories reminiscent of those earlier ones—stories that the Brothers Grimm might have written if they were slightly less inclined to preach and a whole lot more interested in sex. Between the covers are things that go bump in the night, and a few things that go bump-and-grind too. And, because even our twisted little minds love a happy ending, after fighting the dragons, loving the wolf, besting the evil stepmother or breaking the horrific spell, our heroes and heroines actually get to survive—limbs and hearts intact.
But they have to earn it, because in fairytales, like life, nothing worth keeping comes without a fight, or the potential for disaster.
I hope you enjoy this excerpt from my story, Awaken
Journeys Through Seduction
The moon had risen fully by the time Myrina climbed the ladder leading to her little attic room and was so bright she blew out her lamp and undressed by the silvery light. Clad only in her shift, she stood at the window, trying to sort through the disparate emotions—fear, disbelief, desire, shame—all churning together in her heart.
Out there, somewhere, the glade would be bathed in moonlight. The magical circle of trees stood guard. The spirit or faery who spoke in that deep, thrilling voice was there, waiting for her. How she knew that, Myrina could not say, but it was a conviction that grew and widened until the pull of his voice, his passion, was almost too strong to resist.
“No good will come of this, Myrina Traihune. Best to forget—go on as though it never happened.”
The whispered words held no weight and floated away like smoke, insubstantial and unimportant in comparison to the fire raging inside.
Prince Ryllio had learned not to count the days or measure the nights, even when he was aware of them. Time had become meaningless and, for long, blessed ages, he sank into a dream state, as though the stone encasing his body had travelled to his brain, giving it infinite slowness. Between those periods he was awoken by the Fey, became aware of and treasured each contact with the living, be it animal or bird, faery or human, although the latter were rare indeed.
Visits from the Fey were once more frequent, but had slowly dwindled. The king and queen had sometimes returned, rousing him from his stupor to watch their midnight parties in the glade, where they and their court caroused by torchlight. Sometimes, coming alone, they made love as on the first day when they caught him watching. Energetic and adventurous lovers, their couplings left him almost weeping with desire. Better, he thought at those times, for them to have killed him outright rather than torture him in such a cruel way. His body was stone, but his emotions, his needs, remained intact, becoming painful as he watched them make love and was touched and aroused by the tenderness between them.
Golden-haired Kestor also sometimes came to see him, allowing Ryllio a few weeks or months of consciousness, but his visits, like those of the king and queen, came with less and less frequency. The Fey, Kestor once explained, were slowly retreating beyond the veil. Some would always remain in the human world, and there were portals between the two planes if you knew where to find them, but they were becoming fewer. It was only as Ryllio considered the oak on the other side of the glade had gone from sapling to towering behemoth in the time since he last saw a faery that he realised they were probably gone from this part of the human world forever.
“Good riddance,” he thought, but in his heart he knew it to be a sad thing, irrespective of the trouble they had visited on him. The thought of their magic being lost to this world was an unhappy circumstance indeed. And their company, tantalizing and frustrating as it was, was some relief from the loneliness which otherwise was complete. Growing to appreciate the birds that nested in his thicket, the foxes that sometimes denned nearby, was not the same as hearing voices, seeing others like his former self, be they human or Fey.
Living this mostly timeless existence had been the norm, until today.
Now, desperation forced the counting not of minutes but of seconds since the black-haired nymph had left the glade.
She had entered as though in a dream—a little smile tipping the edges of her full pink lips, the motion of her hands languid and graceful as she doffed her cloak. Beneath a small white cap edged with lace lay coils of midnight-dark hair, small tendrils escaping in ringlets to play around her face. Heavy-lidded eyes of sparkling blue seemed to look right at him, and a blush of rosy colour stained from throat to softly rounded cheeks.
Ryllio had felt her presence, her beauty, like the pull of a rope anchored to his soul. As she stopped before where he knelt and reached to unbutton her jacket, the pounding echo of his heart shook his stony prison and rushed in his ears.
The need to touch her, learn who she was, was so overwhelming he forgot the spell holding him in place—tried to reach for her although it was impossible. Straining, he imagined touching her face, the sensation of her peachy skin beneath his fingers. When she arched her face skyward, raising her hands to her cheeks, her neck, Ryllio knew she could hear his thoughts, his wishes, although he knew not how.
Oh, the joy of it! The desire! Watching the innocent exploration, her sweet face tight and flushed with need and knowing she could sense all he desired made Ryllio feel alive, truly human for the first time since his punishment began.
Her small breasts were sensitive. It was obvious from the way simply touching them excited her, took her close to the apex of passion. His yearning to enhance her pleasure led him further and further until he imagined her naked beneath him, thighs open, revealing her most secret place to his avid gaze. She shuddered, her little hand creeping beneath her skirts, and he pictured himself lifting her hips, covering her delicious wet flesh with his mouth.
The sound of her release was sweet torture—the sight of her falling back, writhing among the flowers, crying out again and again, brought him to a pitch of need never felt before. As a man he had loved women, taking delight in their charms. As a lump of stone he had seen beautiful Fey, scantily or even sky-clad, watched the royal couplings and known the rush of arousal. But never had he wanted, craved, another as he did this woman.