Lightning Kissed, they called me. What a laugh. Lightning Cursed, more like. Or perhaps just cursed. Yeah, that pretty much sums up my life. Death, too, if I ever make it up this goddamn mountain.
I swear the Storm God has it in for me. Who the hell thought of putting a shrine on top of a mountain? Only those lunatic Lightning Priests, I suppose. The ones that think it’s a good idea to spend their lives serving gods who don’t give two shits about us. Not that the old Storm Shrine had a priest now, anyway. It had been a good seven years since the old one died. Well, we all assumed he died. No one ever found a body, but he was an old man that lived up on a mountain. Most people figured he got hit by the lightning he seemed to love so damn much. I subscribed to the theory that he was just ancient and slipped off a cliff. Didn’t figure for the lightning theory, because I knew first hand that just because you get hit by lightning, doesn’t mean you die. No, sometimes something far worse happens. Sometimes you live.
I was seven when I learned that the gods must hate us. I was out helping my dad harvest the crops. It was raining, but only slightly, and my dad decided to take in the crop while the ground was soft. I suppose he must have been lower to the ground than me, because when I raised my shovel to dig in, I suddenly felt a shooting pain through my hands, all the way down to my feet. I woke up in bed a few days later. My mother had been by my bedside, crying the entire time. She hugged me tight when I first woke up, I remember because it hurt more than anything else ever had. The town’s healer said lightning was usually fatal, but I was lucky to have survived. How wrong he was.
The burns took a few weeks to heal, and I still bear the scars running through my hands, over my heart, and down to my legs and feet. Lightning-kissed, indeed. Even now, I bear the spidery looking fractals, forever branding me as kissed. Tch, kissed. Too bad lightning was the only thing that ever kissed me. Or touched at me, for that matter.
At first, I thought the healer was right about my luck, until I tried to help dad with the crops again. I put the shovel to the earth three times before I was winded, and a fourth time before the shooting pain in my chest caused me to faint for a few more hours.
It was those next few days we realized that every time I tried to do anything strenuous, my heart would give out. It wasn’t just work, getting too excited could trigger an episode. The healer came back to examine me, and told my parents that the damage done to my heart was beyond any healing he was capable of. Any hope of healing my heart lie in the capitol city, with the Order Priests. Of course, I was no Hero. Heroes got the best treatment from the Order. As for my lowly peasant status, if I besought The Order for any healing, I’d have to pay. Extravagantly.
I still remember the hope in my mother’s eyes. Hopes of saving up enough for possibly going to the capitol and seeking out a healer for me. My parents were young then. But foolish. I didn’t know it at first, but I became a burden. On my parents and my siblings. I was no longer two sets of hands to help in the fields or around the house. I was simply another mouth to feed, and the reality of this became apparent. My brothers and sisters did their best not to resent me, but it was hardly avoidable when all I was to them was another chore. Something to be taken care of. I couldn’t play with them, or share in the work. They ran and played in the sun, while I stayed inside, doing my best to be useful. What passed for my daily duties included helping with the laundry and helping to serve food.
I loved my parents, but I could never not see the sadness in their eyes when they looked at me. I watched their hopes ground down, bit by bit, until all that was left was a sad powder of forgotten dreams.
I knew then, that it wasn’t fair, just as I know now. I rather wish I would have been dealt a shorter rope in life, for I have finally reached the end of it. No master would take an apprentice who went into convulsions whenever his heart started to beat too fast. I can’t work, I can’t help, I can do nothing but drain what is already there. Well, I’ll be my family’s burden no longer. If I can ever get up this mountain.
I had been thinking about it for a while, now. I don’t know what prompted me to choose today, but it just felt… right, somehow. Throwing myself off of a cliff seemed to be the best way, I mean. People would just assume I fell. It wouldn’t hurt, hell. Might be fun for a few minutes. Of course, then I thought about the old Shrine…
The Storm Shrine, built to worship the Storm God. Probably some desperate bid for favorable rains for the harvest. Well, to hell with all that. I was going to break everything I could in that Shrine. Whatever the Storm God’s reasons for cursing me, what else could he take from me? I was already going to end it, any further curse he could muster was going to be incredibly short lived.
I suppose it was this sort of macabre determination that spurred me up the mountain. It was easy to sneak away, nobody really cared what I did since it was almost impossible for me to be doing anything important. It was slow going, given my condition, but I pressed onward. Even when it got dark entirely too soon, I kept trudging up the path. The mountain was not incredibly big, most people can make the journey in half a day. It seemed insurmountable to me, especially once I got tired. The Storm God must have heard me coming, because it started raining late afternoon. I wouldn’t be deterred. The bastard was going to get what was coming for him.
I can’t let him off easy, I guess. Or maybe I just want some satisfaction for once in my miserable life. One foot in front of the other. Easy enough for any fool, but agony for me. My chest hurt, my muscles ache, I’ve never walked so far in my life. Now, the rain batters me as if to push me off the path and down the mountain before I can reach my destination. I’ve never been so cold in my life, the chill cuts to my bones and I clutch my cloak about myself. It was a simple affair, hemp, to go with my linen clothes and complete the guise of the miserable sap that I am.
I can’t remember how many times I slipped and almost lost my footing. I keep thinking that it would be easier to just stop struggling and let the mountain take me. I think I may have blacked out at some point, but I suppose my body must have gone on autopilot, driven by sheer defiance. I reach the summit, soaked to the bone and cold enough that I would have been worried about freezing injuries if I had planned on seeing the morning. The sight before me is far more important than my failing health.
The summit of the mountain is bowl-shaped, and the Shrine had been built into the side of the rock wall. I follow the path leading into the central area, which houses an old, dead tree. Legends say that it was a tree planted by demons to absorb all the life out of the area. The Ayakashi, they called it. It was only when the Storm God threw down a bolt of lightning so mighty that it split the tree in half down the middle, did life return to the valley below. Now, it was just a burned husk of a trunk, with lots of little offerings around its base.
There was a sort of altar before the tree, with more offerings. Generally just rotted and time-worn things left praying for favorable rains. Nothing recent, as people had stopped coming ever since the old Priest had disappeared. I walked closer, I didn’t mind the rain or the chill anymore. I think I was smiling. I remember taking the first one, and throwing it against the rock wall off to the side. It didn’t go far, but it did shatter on the ground. Even above the rain and the wind, I could hear the tinkle of pottery breaking. I hadn’t worried was was in the bowl, just that it broke.
I felt a sense of elation fill me from foot to head. I forgot about the pain and the exhaustion, and continued. I broke everything I could lift. The clatter of breaking bowls, vases, and hell, anything that would shatter on rock soon filled the air, joining the storm. I think it was the first time I ever felt powerful. Lightning crackled and thunder roared, I felt as if the Storm God himself was angry at what I was doing.
Only when I could find nothing else to break did I sink to my knees, the pain had returned. The adrenaline wore off, I suppose. I turned to glare at the tree, with its symbols to the Storm God carved into its charred trunk, its stone effigies to him. “WHY?” I screamed. A dying roar, a pitiful cumulation of my pent up wrath at the hand life had dealt me. Sure, no one ever really got a fair deal from life, but this was my life. Other people’s problems were, well, other people’s problems. Of course, in my selfishness and self-pity, I could only ever feel that my lot in life was far worse than anyone else’s.
Lightning flashed again, and the effigies of birds and ryus and various other subjugates of the Storm God seemed to stare down at me in the brief flash. I moved to stand before the tree. “You took everything from me…” I said, accusingly.
Now, some part of me knew that breaking things in a run-down shrine wasn’t going to do anything to a god, but I suppose it was some form of ego that drove me to exact what little revenge a cripple like me could muster before I ended my life. The pain wracked my chest but, I rose to my feet. Perhaps it was the pain that drove me. I meandered toward the edge of the summit, a break in the rock wall that spilled out into darkness. On a clear day, one would have been able to see the village down below. On a night like this, all I saw was a black void beckoning me close to be devoured. I slowly walked toward the edge. Reaching the side was a relief, it would all end. All I had to do was lean forward…
It was a dark shadow that speared into my chest and knocked me back from the edge. I lay on my back in the mud, trying to make out what had just happened. Lightning flashed, and I saw the silhouette perched on top of the shrine. It was a bird. No wait, a girl. Lightning flashed again. Ah, a bird girl.
Most people knew about the demons. The stories would say demons carried off mortals to be devoured, never to be heard from again. I could see her there in the storm, watching me. The golden plumage of her wings seemed to almost shine in the gloom of the rain. So this was what the Storm God had in for me. He sent his demons to do his dirty work. Fine. Was that why she’d knocked me from the edge? Was I to suffer at her hands? Hah, the Storm God wanted my death to be painful, to be sure. Such disrespect could not go unpunished, I guess. My death would not come so easily; the Storm God would not allow his revenge to be taken from him.
I got to my feet as lightning flashed yet again. She had a pretty face, I had to admit, though her eyes stared at me hungrily. I could not mistake that look. A starving man had never eyed a meal with a more intense hunger than the look in that demon’s eyes. Sure, I had heard tales of bewitching beauty, but if this demon was to the sword of the Storm God to cut me down, then it was a gilded blade, polished to reverential shine.
She looked small, crouched with her wings folded like that, but her body belied a curving shapeliness that caused my cold blood to run warm. She would have had a warm face, had it not been curled into that hungry grin. She smiled knowingly, her yellow-eyed gaze belied she knew something I was not privy to. Of course, I did not doubt that at all. Who knew what lie within the minds of demons?
My gaze wandered lower from her face, and I averted my eyes out of reflex. She was naked, but bore a body that seemed sculpted out of marble. The arms that became her wings were lithe, muscles corded and strong. Lithe, yes, that would have described nearly all of her. She was not bulky by far, but I could see the muscles tense and ready under her skin. All the way down to her thighs, which stood ready to spring out. Raptor, I had once heard, meant bird of prey. She looked every bit a raptor as she eyed me, her prey.
I struggled to my feet, ignoring the pain in my chest, to look at this terrible avian beauty. Perhaps it was the defiance still in my heart that led me to return her gaze instead of just lay there and await death, I still don’t rightly know. I glared right back into those electric yellow eyes and yelled, “Well!?” I threw my arms wide, “What are you waiting for!?”
I immediately regretted my decision as I saw those luminescent wings spread wide. I saw the muscles in her legs spring into action, launching her right at me. I was bowled over again, though this time the weight came down with me.
I found myself flat on my back, struggling to breathe. My heart pounded in my chest like a fluttering moth trying to escape a net. I choked and gasped for air that would not come, regardless of how hard my chest tried to expand. Hah, I thought, the Storm God’s curse would kill me before he could have his demon exact his revenge. What a perfect irony. As my vision went blurry, then black, however, I felt a weird pressure on my mouth. I had never received a kiss before, so the sensation was foreign. I felt life breath itself into my lungs and my vision returned.
What I saw was black, but it wasn’t the deep black of unconsciousness, or death. The bird woman drew her lips back, and her rain-soaked hair, as golden as her plumage, left my eyes. I blinked the water away to see a look of deep concern across her face. “Are you okay?” she asked over the sounds of the storm. I looked at her shocked. I could not muster a response, but kept steadily breathing and felt my heart calm itself.
“I’m SO sorry, I didn’t mean to knock the wind out of you. Can you breathe yet?” the girl asked, leaning down to kiss me again. The stinging in my lungs subsided, and I felt my body relax as my heart rate slowed significantly. The pain was almost completely gone when she pulled back for a second time. “Better?” she asked in a hopeful voice, smiling down at me.
“Can you just kill me and get this over with?” I found myself asking, taking long and slow breaths of the cold air. Surely this demon only wanted to postpone my suffering. Why else would she be trying to soothe me? She looked down at me quizzically, as if I had suddenly sprouted an extra head. “Kill you?” she said, cocking her head slightly to the side. “Why would I want to do that?”
It was about this time that I realized that her legs were straddling me, which was a lot more contact from anyone I had ever gotten, let alone a female. For some reason, I felt twinges of embarrassment well up within me, and I try to push myself away, but my hand brushes something hard and smooth. I look down to see I had accidentally touched the black scales of her clawed feet. Incidentally, I also saw where the scales ended and became yellow feathers, which became cream-colored skin. From there, her skin ran into parts of a woman I had only ever seen after accidentally glimpsing my sisters in the bath. This had an effect on me, and it wasn’t the urge to shield my eyes and gag.
Given that this demon girl was on top of me and therefore her naked body encompassed the majority of my view, my eyes returned to hers in an effort to maintain some semblance of propriety. The look in her eyes, however, suggested I needn’t have bothered. “Because you’re clearly a demon going to eat me.” I said, eager to get my inevitable death over with. I started to feel very foolish, even almost regretting my decision to anger a god before I killed myself. This was going to be painful. Visions of her eating my liver as I watched filled my head, and I squirmed to get away.
“Well…” she grinned down at me, “You are rather tasty~” she said in a voice as smooth and silky as spider’s weave. Her tongue licked the length of her lips, and she smiled as she seemed to savor the taste. She moved her hips in a soft circle, and I became distinctly aware that her sex was positioned directly over mine through my robe. I also became aware of her rain-soaked skin, glistening in the moonligh. The way her hair cascaded down her back. Not to mention the steady grinding her hips seemed to be doing. Despite the storm, I suddenly felt hot, and my heart began to pick up pace.
“Take off your clothes.” she said, her hungry smile back. “W-What?” was all I could muster in response. Her half-lidded gaze kept smiling down at me, almost unnerving in its sheer intensity. “My wing claws aren’t exactly accurate, so unless you want to be wearing shreds, take them off. Of course, if you want to resist, that’s just fine, too…” she said with a tone suggesting she would probably like it more if I resisted.
Afraid if exactly why that sentiment excited her, I obliged. I reach down to slide off my breeches and pulled off my tunic. I lay bare on the muddy ground, the rain washing away the trace amounts of mud my shifting had gotten on me. I knew I should have been cold, but for some reason I wasn’t. The demon seemed to radiate heat, though that seemed to only make me want to grab her and hold her close. I did, however, notice my heart beating faster and faster. She shifted her weight, sitting up onto my hips.
I could not avert my eyes from her unworldly beauty, and my own body sprang into action. I had never before known a woman’s warmth, but my cock sprang to life at the sight and feel of this monster. Despite the reservations in my brain, my body clearly knew what it wanted, and for all it was concerned, my brain could go take a running leap off of the cliff.
The demon rocked her hips, rubbing herself along my length, and I could feel her folds on either side of my member, pressed against my belly as it was. She continued this slow, rocking slide for a while, even as pre leaked onto my stomach. Still I was at a loss for words. I had expected her to eat me, but then she had commanded me to get naked and was taking her pleasure from me.
Part of me wanted to protest this blatant use of my person, but the lizard part of my brain designed for biological function quickly tied up my pride and left it locked in a closet. It was very enjoyable. Her skin was soft and smooth as it glided along mine, slick with rainwater. Where our bodies met was warm and very pleasant. “Ahaaa, it’s so hot~” the bird cooed as she rocked again. “I can feel it pulsing with your heartbeat.”
Her eyes were still half-lidded, her cheeks flushed pink. I didn’t know what to say, save for the fact that I felt roughly the same. “Y-You… feel good, too…” I stuttered out. She laughed, “Ah? You think so? Well, let’s feel good together!” she said with a sudden energy. Then, lightning struck us. Now, when I say that lightning struck, I mean no metaphor. Our hearts didn’t intertwine like we’d suddenly found our lost soul mates and we didn’t make passionate electric love all night. No. Lightning came out of the sky and zapped us.
My vision went white save for the dark silhouette of the avian beauty currently straddling my crotch. At the same time, she raised her hips and lowered herself onto me. Flashes of memory came back from the first time I was struck. I felt myself start to panic, but this was almost instantly drowned out by the suffusion of pleasure coursing through my body. So much filled me at once, and I thought my heart would burst in my chest.
Her lyrical voice filled the air with her moans over the storm as she went rigid, the warm, wet walls of her inner folds clamped tightly over my cock like a vice. It was a sensory overload. She placed the crooks of her wings on my chest to use me as leverage to rock her hips back and forth at a frenzied pace. Lightning struck us again and again, each time suffusing more pleasure into my body through the conduit that was our junction. My voice joined hers as I could not stop myself from succumbing. I could see the arcing volts coursing through her body and into mine. There was a roaring pounding that seemed all around me. I thought it was thunder, but it wasn’t. It was my heart, beating loud and strong. The electricity flowed through my body, around my heart, and I could feel a strange lightness in my chest as my heart worked harder than it ever had.
It was too much. My beating heart scared and elated me. The feel of her intoxicated me. The lightning coursing through my body fascinated me and the sound of our ecstasy resounded within me. All in all, it was not a bad way to lose one’s virginity I later would have to admit. My hands find her hips and pull her against me as I drive myself deeper. My hips leave the ground as I thrust as hard as I can into her. I had never lain with a woman before, but it seems my body tapped into years of evolution to drive it. I pull her body as fervently as I can while my hips thrust upward, eager to feel her darkest depths.
The thunder boomed overhead as lightning continued to strike us. The little arcs of blue-white energy coursed through her and into me. I drank deeply of the pleasure of our bonding, and questioned none of it. There was no injury, no curse, no revenge. There was only her, and the electricity.
I don’t know how long I thrusted up into her, nor how long she rocked her hips against me to drive me as far into her depths as I could go. I do remember placing my hand against hers, the electricity arcing between our fingertips, before I interlocked our hands and kissed her deeply. All of the pain and frustration melted from me. Burned up in the electric feeling and washed away by the rain.
“Cum with me…” she said, looking down on me with unrepentant lust in her eyes. “I want us to cum together…” she pleaded. I nodded. To be honest, I don’t know how I lasted so long in the first place. I could have cum ten times for all I knew, such was the exquisite pleasure of being joined with her. My eyes were clenched tight, and I nodded frantically. Our pace reached a frenzied crescendo before my vision went white once more. Even through closed eyes I could sense the brightness as I fell over the edge of the proverbial precipice into white-hot, delicious agony.
I clutched her form tight to me as I unloaded wave after wave of seed into the deepest reaches of the demon girl. I may have passed out at that point, because all I remember next is the bird girl laying on my chest, cooing in post-orgasmic bliss. Looking up, the clouds seemed brighter, and it had stopped raining. Well, stopped storming. It was still drizzling a bit, but somehow I didn’t really mind.
She nuzzled against my chest, our hips still intertwined. “That was amazing~” she said dreamily. I took a deep breath, sighing with relief. I had never felt so relieved in my life. “To say the least…” was all I could say. I found no words to fully express how I felt, but she seemed to sense it, and nuzzled against me again. The bird girl looked up at me with her piercing eyes, her face an expression of the warmest affection I had ever seen. Well no, I had never seen that much affection in anyone’s eyes, really. Funny, the demon seemed to have more love in her face than my family ever had. Or at least, any that I remembered.
“Ahhh, I feel so refreshed and energized!” she said, sitting up and stretching out her impressive wingspan. I lay there, taking deep breaths. “I’m surprised I’m not dead.”
She giggled, “Still thinking I’m gonna eat you up?” she asked with a smile.
I thought for a second, “Maybe. But I mean, my heart isn’t that great. I figured fucking a demon in a lightning storm would kill me just from excitement…”
The girl looked at me curiously again, “What? Nah, you have the blessing of the Storm God. Lightning would never kill you.”
Were the demon girl anyone else and not currently providing a warm resting place for my somehow still hard cock, I would have pushed her off of me in protest. “Blessing?” I said incredulously, “Hardly. Lightning strike left my heart weak. Too weak to do anything.”
“But you’re here. And so am I!” she said, smiling once more. “You must be blessed otherwise we wouldn’t be here. Besides, you have the mark.” she said, running her downy-soft feathers over the scar on my chest.
I looked away, “Yeah, but I’m not exactly up here for good reasons.” I said guiltily. She laughed, rocking her hips a little and causing me to jump a bit from the oversensitive pleasure. “Don’t be silly. If you weren’t supposed to be here, you wouldn’t be! And neither would I!”
“Look, whatever.” I said almost irritatedly. Sure, the sex was great and all, but I was suicidal just an hour or two ago. I still had no prospects, and I would probably be cast out of the village for having sex with a demon if anyone found out. I tried to push her off and get up. “This was fun, but I have to go…”
“Go?” she said, cocking her head to the side again. “But you can’t!” she said, pushing me back down to the ground. “You have to stay at the shrine! You’re the blessed one!” I looked up at her, “I’m not blessed, all right? If anything, I’m cursed so you probably shouldn’t even be around m-” ZAP.
My voice was cut off as many things happened at once. Lightning stuck us again, and I felt myself pushed over the edge of another orgasm as my voice blended into a moan of pleasure. After I came back down, I heard her giggling again. “Someone’s sensitive now~” she said sultrily. “Hey, don’t jus-”
ZAP. Another lightning strike and more pleasure rolled through my body. Her laughter seemed to double in volume.
“H-Hey!” I protested, “Knock that off!”
She grinned down at me again, “I will, if you promise me that you’ll stay here. And no going to jump off the shrine again! You have to promise, ok?”
“Look, just let me-” ZAP.
“Ahhh, just stop that and let me-” ZAP.
“PLEASE JUST LET ME-” ZAP.
As I came down from what must have been my fifth orgasm, I nodded weakly up at her. I could barely move, let alone protest any more. “All right, I’ll say…”
She looked at me suspiciously. “You promise not to jump off the shrine, too?”
“Yeah, sure.” I said, catching my breath. I must have not sounded too sincere, since I felt the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end. “I promise, I promise!” I added hastily.
She rocked her hips again, and I shuddered. She felt nice, but my cock was starting to become overly sensitive from repeated abuse. “You know, I almost hoped you would keep saying no.” she said sultrily, “It feels so good when you cum inside~”
The bird girl stood up off of me, my cock sliding free with a messy noise that made me a bit embarrassed. I was apparently the only one that felt so, as she walked around to stretch her legs. “Are you hungry?” she asked. I was made acutely aware that I was, and nodded. I hadn’t eaten anything since the start of my trek up the mountain. Didn’t figure to waste the family’s food when I went up to kill myself anyway. My stomach rumbled in its own response at the thought of something warm and hearty.
The bird girl smiled and gestured toward the abandoned shrine. “We got plenty of fish inside, come on!” I followed suit and got about ten paces before I looked sideways at her. “So, uh… what’s your name anyway?”
“Wren.” she said sweetly, and ventured inside the shrine.
“Wren.” I said to myself. What a lovely name.