I walked into town with a skip in my step, after all it was shopping day which was my favorite day of the week. The worn path now seemed so familiar to me even though I had only been in the town a few months. After all most of the other girls at the halfway house couldn’t move as freely as she could, so I was the one that was most often chosen to do the shopping.
The weather was wonderful today too. The sun felt like it was seeping straight through my plain white dress and caressing my body. Just for the heck of it I did a small spin which spread my long light brown hair in an arc, the light of the sun almost dying it gold. It felt so good to be alive. I was glad that there were still some days like this in the time I had left.
The market was bustling today like it always is. I spent some time wandering the stalls taking it all in. There was an extra treat today as there was a wandering merchant who had set up shop. Our town was of modest size and a bit out of the way so these merchants were always a treat. Humming I went over to see what he had.
It was a strange assortment of goods. He had the normal armor and swords but some of them seemed a bit strange. I could have sworn I saw one of the armors twitch a bit, although it was probably my eyes playing tricks on me. I also did not like the look of that sword at all. It was quite dark and foreboding. There were normal clothes as well although a good deal of them seemed to be for women. There were leather jackets tied with belts, some pants that had a cheese emblem embroidered on it that seemed to be for children, and even a swimsuit. I was just caressing one of his camisoles when the owner came over.
“That’s 100% pure Weresheep wool you’re looking at. I guarantee you after a night’s sleep in it you will wake up more rested and fluffy then you ever were.” He said with a smile.
While “fluffy” did sound a bit strange I decided to ignore it and returned his grin with one of my own. He was a young man in his late twenties wearing a blue suit with a black silk bowler hat on his head. He had that sort of personality that made you want to trust him instantly. He seemed like a nice friendly guy.
“Hey mister. I have never seen you round here before. Welcome to Zellia city of the mountains.”
“Glad to be here. I hope you are enjoying my stall. If you’re looking for clothes, why don’t you try on one of these hats?” He said pointing to some round flat, musty smelling hats. They will feel so good that you never want to take it off.”
I gave a little laugh “Those funny things? No way. I would rather be dead then wear one of those. Actually I had come to do food shopping for the week.”
“Then you’re in luck. I happen to have supplies of rare food from all over the world.” That he did. While most merchants seem to stick with a theme his stall was more varied than most. There were jars of a particular pink juice, blocks of strange smelling cheeses, chocolate with a slimy jelly filling, and more weird and colorful fruits then I have ever seen before.
“If you are looking for something special why don’t you try this jelly? Once you taste it, it can totally change your world.”
He shoved a small jar underneath my nose. It smelled sweet like fruit, but seemed to have a strange white consistency. Although it did smell good there was something on his table that smelled much, much, better. I had made up my mind before I had even gotten to the stall.
“Thanks, but I would rather see what is in that bag. After all it smells SOO good.” Pointing to a small bag that was hanging from the side of his wagon. His smile froze for just a second and it was replaced with one that was far more tender as he said the most outrageous thing.
He smiled softly. “Miss Akane you wouldn’t have to be suffering from a terminal illness would you?”
My world spun as he spoke the horrifying truth. I had to catch my breath for a minute. Still there was no point in hiding it. After all everyone in the town already knew, and anyone who had any dealings with the church could take one look at my dress and see for themselves.
I took his hand and directed it to my chest. Below my modest breasts I had him feel beneath my rib cage.
“There do you feel that? That large hard lump is magic based cancer. I have a much higher tolerance then most people for sucking in energy from the environment. Originally, I was going to the Trisane Kingdom College of Magics because I had such superior capacity, but the first time I cast a spell I fainted. That was when they found that … thing. It had been growing slowly, but unnoticed. Trying to cast a spell caused it to awaken. While it doesn’t cause me any pain it will soon grow large enough to interfere with my heart and I will die. That is why I am here in this town. My parents sent me here so they wouldn’t have to see me croak. Ironic isn’t it? I was going to be a superior mage and now I won’t even see my 24th birthday.”
“I see. How much time do you have left?”
“About a year. Not that it matters much. I just hope I can spend my final days having fun with friends. . . . . . How did you know?”
His smile returned to his original brightness. “Because you were able to smell that.” He said pointing at the bag that had sparked my interest. “That contains a rare and potent healing herb from a faraway country. Only those in desperate need of healing would thing that it smells good, especially through the bag that is designed to block its smell. Maybe it could even help you.
I gave a derisive little snort “Yeah like I haven’t heard that one before. Still it does smell good, so I think I will buy it anyway. How much?”
“Three coppers!” Given how much he had hyped it I was sure he was going to name some exorbitant price and try and milk me out of my money. I sure wasn’t expecting it to cost the same as a bunch of broccoli. “Are you sure you should be selling such a rare plant for so little?”
“I’m sure. After all you need it, and what human wouldn’t help out those in need? Do you need one mushroom or more?”
I looked at the small bag. “Probably everything you got. I live at the church’s Transitional House for Young Ladies or as we like to call it the halfway to heaven house. It’s a facility for young women who are dying and we have 11 mouths to feed.”
“And what pray tell are you “transitioning” to might I ask?”
“To the Chief God. At least that’s where we are supposed to end up. That’s why they sick a priest on us and make us wear these holy looking dresses. Because we are going to be going to heaven soon.”
“Maybe. And maybe you have other plans” he said tossing me the bag. While I felt bad he refused to accept more than the three coppers price we had agreed on originally. Then when I turned to leave he said the strangest thing.
“Please enjoy your new life.”
Not thinking anything of it I beamed back “Sure!” and hurried home. After all I couldn’t wait to share the mushrooms with the other girls at the dorm. Did I mention that they smelled good?
Going home seemed to go by in a flash as I was in a hurry to make dinner. I went straight to the kitchen and ripped open the bag. The sweet aroma of the mushrooms became almost overpowering. It took all of my willpower not to eat one then and there, but I was determined to share them with the other halfway girls so I swallowed my drool and got out the frying pan. After all who doesn’t like mushrooms sautéed in butter and onions?
Soon the smell wafted to the rest of the house and I was surrounded by the rest of the girls. They were surrounding me drawn in by the sweet scent. They muttered amongst themselves and seemed to be transfixed by my cooking. After a few minutes even our youngest girl arrived beaming from her wheelchair like always.
“Good afternoon big sister Akane. What is that wonderful smell?” She said followed by a fit of wet coughing. She smiled weakly holding a bloodstained handkerchief to her mouth. She tried to pass it off as if it were no big deal, but everyone could see she was in pain.
“Good afternoon Mary. It’s some mushrooms I got at the market. Be a good girl and wait a little longer.”
Mary was our youngest girl and our most tragic case. She was born with a weak constitution and spent most of her early years battling various types of infections. That was why her parents abandoned her to the halfway house when she was only five years old. After all there was no telling when the Chief God would call her. Because of this she was the house’s longest resident. Her smiling face peeking out of the folds of her frilly white dress (which was a special exception) was a permanent fixture at the house. However, recently he condition had taken a turn for the worse when she contracted the red flu. Now she couldn’t speak much without going into coughing fits and spewing out blood while being stuck in a wheelchair. I was certain that she would be in heaven any day now.
While we were all enraptured by the scent one other resident did not find it so appealing. “What is that godawful smell?” Said Arthur. Arthur was our resident priest which one could tell from a glance at his clothes. He was in charge of us wilting flowers and making sure that our path to heaven was as easy as possible. He was a man in his mid-thirties with short cropped brown hair and an easygoing smile that came often.
What was not as easily visible was his immense set of muscles as they were hidden under his robe, which is quite a shame. Arthur woke up early every day and practiced sword fighting for hours even before we were supposed to get up. Rumor has it that he used to be a soldier fighting those loathsome monsters that think they are women. One day the village that he had been stationed at had been overrun with monsters and many of the women he knew became monsterized. Instead of fighting those who had just been his friends he threw down his sword and ran. How he made it out without becoming one of their victims not even he knows. All I know is that all of the halfway house girls are very glad that he didn’t end up with one of those creatures in a sticky den making love all day.
Arthur’s morning exercise was a treat to us girls. He did it to stay in shape and to protect us, even though there really was no need to. After all we would all be dead soon so why should he protect us? Unknown to him we would all wake up and hide in the attic to watch his routine. Watching his rippling sweat coated muscles was a feast to our eyes. Needless to say the entire house was in love with him. After all, he was the only man we knew and he was so kind. You could even say that getting off to his image was a rite of passage at the halfway house.
Of course we all knew how doomed our love was. After all, in a year or two we would all be dead and he would have a new group of girls to deal with. However, in this brief span of time our love is real and burning bright. We had made a pact never to speak of this to him as it would only be a bother to him. All we wanted to do was watch his wonderful face from afar.
Right now though his face was not so wonderful, scrunched up and holding his nose. “What is that smell. It’s so horrible!”
“Some mushrooms that Akane brought from market. Don’t they smell wonderful?”
“No they don’t they smell rotten. You should throw them aw…” He never got a chance to finish his sentence as ten sets of angry eyes focused on him. Even the brave ex-knight was forced to take a step back when faced with that many angry women.
A fierce argument erupted between the residents of the house and Arthur. It went back and forth between the women who “wanted to eat” and Arthur who “wanted to not eat.” I stood there watching their stupidity. Eventually I had had it. “Enough!” I screamed slamming the pan down. Apparently I wasn’t the only one who had enough of the fighting as Mary had screamed the same thing. She popped out of her wheelchair and tried to stand before collapsing on the ground coughing up blood.
“Can’t we all just get along?” She said panting. “I just want to eat big sister Akane’s cooking.”
We all stood there horrified for a few seconds. Then I ran over and helped Mary get back in her chair. “You!” I said pointing my ladle at the other girls “Get out of my kitchen! You are in the way. And you!” I said thrusting my ladle at Arthur, “I don’t know what is wrong with your nose but we all think they smell wonderful. I just got them at the market today, they are fresh. Didn’t you always say never to waste food?”
“Fine, fine, I guess you are right.” Arthur said a bit deflated. “But I just don’t think they are for human consumption.”
“No buts! I got them from a merchant I trust, and we are having them for dinner. You had better finish your plate.”
He raised his hands like he was surrendering to an enemy and left the kitchen while muttering something under his breath. While I will admit the mushrooms do look a big ominous, with their little screaming faces and ooze coming from them, I believe nothing that smells this good could be bad for you.
Once I had banished the interlopers dinner was prepared in a flash. We had mutton with rice, but the main star was the mushrooms. Their looks had improved dramatically once cooked. I choked down my drool and called everyone to the table. It was one long table with me sitting at one end next to Arthur at the head, and Mary the youngest sitting at the other end. As was the tradition for all new and especially good food we let Mary sample it first. She took a steaming heap of it on her fork and shoveled it into her little mouth.
“It’s good!” She exclaimed with a joyous face. Soon the rest of the dorm girls were shoving their faces with my mushroom dish. The room became filled with happy cries
“So good! I just can’t stop eating it! Akane you have outdone yourself this time!”
Pleased to see my friends enjoying my cooking I tried some as well. It was divine! I could feel it melt in my mouth and seep into me on its way down. Nothing I had ever tried was so good! I doubt I could find something to match the taste if I tried.
Seeing the rapture on my face Arthur, who still looked at it on his plate as if it were his enemy could not help but ask “Is it really that good?”
“Sure! Try some yourself.” I put some on my fork and tried to feed it to him. While it looked like he would rather die than eat it, as a knight, no as a man, there was no way he could avoid eating home cooked food being fed to him by a girl. He put it into his mouth and grimaced. With, what I view as a bit too much staged gaging, he managed with great effort to get it down.
As I was about to sit back down I noticed something strange happen at the other end of the table. Mary who was happily shoving her food into her mouth dropped her fork and collapsed against the table. It was so sudden that it looked like she was a marionette whose strings had been cut. And she was not the only one. One by one the other girls dropped to the table and lay still. Of course I was not an exception to this. My world spun and I barely had time to think “What is..” before my mind was lost to the fog and I crashed to the floor and lay motionless.
“Akane…. Akane … Big Sister Akane please wake up!”
These word sunk down into my consciousness. My word was still dark and my mind wrapped in fog, but I could hear someone calling my name. It seemed that I was lying on the floor against the cold flagstones. My body felt the same temperature as the floor, but it did not feel bad. In fact it had been quite some time since I had felt this good.
I groggily lifted my head to find Mary standing in front of me. “Oh good! Big sister you’re awake.”
“Mary … you’re … out of your wheelchair?” My brain had finally started to connect. “How do you feel?”
“I feel SOOOO good sister. I don’t think I have ever felt this good in my entire life.” Despite what she said she did not look good. Her face was deathly pale and the fire that had always lit her eyes had gone out. Still, if said she was feeling good that was something to celebrate. She did a twirl to show me how fit she felt. “Sister I feel so thirsty though.” She said running her lounge over her now blue lips. “I want some milk.”
“We will have to see if we have any.” Now that she mentions it I am thirsty as well. I ran my lounge over my parched lips and was surprised to find that I had grown long rather two rather sharp teeth that protruded from my mouth. “F..a..ngs.” My brain was still not working at this point.
Mary giggled. “Yes big sister, you have a lovely pair of fangs.” My brain still refused to connect. What the heck had happened to us?!!!
At this point the other girls started getting up from the table. They looked just like Mary with their pale skin and eyes that resembled a dead fish. You could almost hear their joints creak as they got up. They all had vacant drooling expressions and did not look as if they had any brains left. And then the wind changed.
The wind blew across the long room carrying the scent of something amazingly delicious with it. As one all of our heads turned in that direction and even I started to drool over the fragrance. I looked over and saw that it was in the direction where Arthur, still sprawled out and unconscious lay. NO It was not in HIS Direction. It Was coming FROM HIM!!!!
I realized this and my brain turned white. Next I relied I had appeared next to Arthur caressing his throat. I could feel the pulsing energy of life that ran through it, and needed to have it for my own. I sunk my fangs deep into him and began slurping his precious elixir. I could feel it moving through my body warming it as it went. I had never felt heat before, never felt alive before this crimson tide. I shuddered as the heat reached my womb and I came. It felt better than anything I had experienced before. After all this was HIS fluid, Arthur’s fluid, the man who I never thought I could touch even though he was so close was filling me with his fluid. I came close to passing out, but I never let go. After all he WAS MINE.
Through my pleasure soaked brain I could see the rest of my sisters rushing to partake in him as well. In moments his shirt was torn to ribbons and they began to like up that sweet, sweet sweat of his that we had watched him spread on the dirt every morning. What a waste that was! Even Mary was involved desperately trying to rip off his pants. I could not help but get a little excited as I thought at what lay below and wanted her desperately to succeed. I could feel myself getting wet thinking about that forbidden land that we had always dreamed about. Soon it would be open and we would go through. I inwardly cheered them on as they ravished the rest of his body. After all we were sisters now and I wanted them to feel as good as I do. Come partake of HIM my sisters. He feels so good. I know you can feel it too. Soon we will be one forever, gloriously partaking of this wonderful incredible FOOD!
The screams of pleasure from the ten newly turned undead mamono could be heard from the outer wall of the Transition House. As the ex-priest woke up they only became more intense and rose to a fevered pitch. It seemed as if the inhabitants inside wanted to let the whole world know what sort of incredible lewd things they were doing inside. Thankfully the Transition House was far enough away from the town that this would never happen. After all, if the guards saw what was happening in there, being faithful followers of the Order, they would try and execute them in the name of the Chief God. This would be a great shame after they had just been reborn and had barely scratched the surface of the pleasure that being a mamono could give.
No. On this night there was only one person who heard the din of debauchery from inside that place. There was a man dressed in blue with a black silk bowler hat upon his head leaning against the walls in the shadows. Each sweet moan from the inside seemed to give him pleasure almost as it was himself that was being ravished. After soaking in the sweet screams he gave his hat a hitch “Now that’s one more satisfied customer” and melted into the shadows.