The Night-Time Suites
Both Lilly and Luis could be seen in the elevator, an awkward silence being shared between them after the scene caused by Lilly. They stayed like this for a moment, making Luis think that his breathing was too loud. Lilly just stood there, not moving a single muscle; a grim aura of humorless seriousness seeming to have completely overtaken the young sweet girl from before. Luis was hesitant about asking what was wrong, worrying that he may regret the answer. He waited, deciding that it would be better to ask later… but his curiosity was prying at his mind, wanting to know what had caused such a reaction. Until, finally…
“What’s wrong…with Floor Nine?”
She flinched at the question, snapping back to reality from her contemplative state by his question. Luis had cringed a bit by her reaction, as if though expecting her to attack him for no reason.
“I’m sorry, did you say something?” looking up at him with her wide smile stretching across her face.
“Umm…” still uncertain if he should be asking but determined to find out, “what’s wrong with…Floor Nine?”
Her smile faded away, replaced by the earlier grave look she wore seconds ago. Her hands that sat by her side balled up into a fist, as if though trying not to admit something. She turned her head back towards the elevator door, looking straight ahead, never shifting her gaze anywhere else.
“I don’t like the Ninth Floor, especially at this time when they are about to get up.”
“Wait…” he responded, remembering how late it was when he came in, “Who wakes up at this time?”
“Floor Nine is known as the Night-Time Suites. Do you know why?”
Luis wasn’t exactly sure himself, he thought that it was meant for couples on their honeymoon or something of that nature, but stayed quiet to let Lilly continue.
“It’s because the residents on that floor are nocturnal or live better in the dark. They’re going to be waking up soon…and I don’t like some of the residents up there.”
“Wait a minute,” Luis replied, confused by the explanation, “the sunset isn’t for another few hours.”
They had arrived to the ninth floor; the elevator creaked to a stop before sliding its doors open to the floor awaiting them. The orange glow blinded Luis for a second, having to shield his eyes until they were able to adjust. He removed his hands, his jaw almost dropped as he saw the source of the orange glow; off in the distance, he saw the sun beginning its downward descent to welcome in the darkness of night. Lilly tugged at his hand as she begun to walk forward and out of the elevator.
“Not on this floor, the nights here start early.”
Lilly and Luis had been traveling through the hallways for a few minutes. Lilly was flying ahead, her tail swinging in the air as her dress fluttered from the wind; Luis was behind her, jogging to keep up with her and listen to her explanation.
“So…most of the residents here are zombies and skeletons that like to roam the halls at night, and that’s why you’re scared of this floor.”
Lilly reddened as she heard him, she didn’t want to admit it, but it was true, she was afraid of the undead. Luckily, she stayed ahead of him to hide her face from him.
Luis was barely managing to follow Lilly as she flew down the halls, making quick turns at the last second. As if it wasn’t bad enough knowing that most of the residents her were dead…or at least undead, but the fact that this place looked like a giant graveyard didn’t help at all. Giant tombstones lined up side by side, each one was probably the size of a small wall; all of them had a single door on them, and together formed almost a hallway for them to go through.
When he had exited the elevator, he didn’t quite believe his eyes, it was as if though he had ended up being transported to another land. Although he wanted to ask countless questions about where they were or what had happened, Lilly was in a rush to get him to his room and took flight almost immediately. Even so, he did manage to sneak in a few questions while he jogged close enough to hear Lilly’s response. Many of the answers were quick, like what was the name of that tiny room that took them here or how did we end up outside, but most of his questions usually had the same answer…
That was the only explanation for everything in this place as far as he could understand.
If we’re not outside, why does it look and feel like it? Magic.
How did that elevator thing take us up here? Magic.
How are you able to fly with such small cute wings? Magic.
This place made no sense to him, but many things didn’t for him. Joe had probably figured out everything by now… Luis wished he was here so that he could explain it to him.
The sun was still on its downward descent; only half of it could be seen peeking above the land as it continued to slowly sink out of view. From the looks of it, they probably had a few minutes left before the night begins.
“What’s your room?”
“Huh?” not realizing that he had just been asked a question
“Your room number, what is it?” Lilly repeated to him
“Oh, 487 I think.” He said, while trying to take his room card out of his back pocket.
Luis had failed to notice that the small Alice suddenly broke to a quick halt, flapping her wings wildly to slow down until she finally stopped. By the time he did notice something in front of him, it was too late, and he ended up crashing his face against Lilly’s back, sending both of them towards the ground.
“Oww…” both of them muttered as they tried to sit up after their collision.
“Why’d you stop?” questioned Luis, rubbing his nose with the palm of his hand.
“Sorry,” she replied in a voice that made Luis nearly apologize from sudden guilt, “but we just passed your room.”
Luis blinked a few times in disbelief before turning to his left to look for the room number. It took him a moment to read it, but upon the side of the door was engraved three numbers, ‘495’, they had passed his room without even noticing. He shifted his gaze back towards the Alice, who was already at her feet, rubbing her back where Luis had crashed into. He felt horrible that he might have actually hurt this young girl, who had been nothing less than kind to him and Joe…
‘Joe must be in his room by now…chatting with his neighbors or his roommate…’
Lilly finally straightened herself up and began to walk towards Luis’ room.
“C’mon, you’re room is this way” she told him, tugging at his shoulder
As if though unconsciously, Luis quickly stood up and began to follow the tender Lilly. They walked, passing by each door; 494, 493, 492…and kept going until they had reached his door. Once they had reached his room, she flapped her wings until she was at head height with him.
“Just slide your key card into that slot above the handle to unlock your door, I hope you enjoy the night here.” bowing slightly at Luis before heading back to the elevator.
Once she had turned the corner, Luis shook his head and blinked several times, slightly dazed as if though he had just been released from a trance.
‘Whoa…what just happened?’
Instead of pondering on the question, he decided to set it aside as if it was nothing and enter his room. He took out his room key and pushed it into the slot, the clicking sound telling him that he could now enter.
The room was dimly lit, the only source of light was the open window that let in the light of the setting sun. Throughout the room, there were several unlit candles, both mounted on the walls and standing on whatever flat surface there was. At the center of the room was a large red pentagram painted onto the floor, it seemed as if though this room was used for some sort of ritual. Luis was already wondering whether it was too late to head back to the elevator as he continued to look around.
The room itself seemed to have been made from several large grey stones, making it seem as if he had just entered a tower without noticing. A large wooden table stood in the corner, a variety of books, paper, and writing utensils covered it with a small empty space just big enough to work on. In the corner of the room was a large closed chest.
Luis approached the desk, being one of the only actual pieces furniture in the room, and sat down in the stool beside it. He turned himself to face the table, picking up one of the books near him and opened it to see the contents within.
Luis knew that he wasn’t a very good reader, but he could recognize a few common ones and sound out most of them out when he needed to. Of course, that was only true for one that was written in his language, and this book was not. This book was filled with glyphs, scribbles, and symbols that he had never seen before, let alone be able to read. Joe had learned how to read in a few languages, but Luis doubted that even his friend would be able to understand this confusion of lines. He flipped through the pages, going through walls and walls of text that filled the tome, until stopping at one of the few pages that had a picture sketched onto it. It was a large detailed image of a pentagram, almost identical to the one that was painted on the floor. Luis looked back and forth between the two before deciding to close the mysterious book and place it back onto the table. Whatever was written in that book, he felt that it would be better not knowing.
He turned in his seat to face the window, the sun was barely visible, all that was left of the bright orb was a small sliver that was barely above the horizon. He watched as the sun finally disappeared, and the skies darken to welcome in the night. Without any warning, a sudden gust of wind flew past him and circled through the room. The various candles around the room burst into flames before the fire quickly shrinking into the size of a regular candle light.
Luis had nearly jumped when he felt the odd breeze, but the sudden lighting of candles made him freeze on the spot. He had never seen anything like this before. It was probably magic, but how in the world did it happen? Did someone cast it or was this ‘normal’? He decided it would be better not to find out as he headed towards the door, hoping that he’d be able to find the elevator.
He went towards the door, trying his best to remember which way he had gone with Lilly so that he’d be able to return to the Lobby. Luis wasn’t quite sure which way he had came from, but he knew that if he’d stay any longer that he would end up being locked up in a room that was steadily creeping him out the longer he stayed. He decided to take the risk, swinging the door open and stepping out of his room.
The hallways were still empty, the sky was dark, and the moon could be seen almost hanging loosely in the night sky.
He closed the door and began to return in the direction that he came, hoping that he would not lose himself in the process. Luis wandered the desolate halls, not a soul in sight…he could’ve sworn that this place would be practically impossible to escape from…he was happy that he was wrong.
He wasn’t sure how long it would take for the undead to rise, or if there were any that were already up, so he tried his best walk as quickly and quietly as possible. He constantly turned his head just to make sure no one was behind him as he reached the end of his hallway and into one of the main halls of this place.
The ‘main’ hall as Lilly had told them that they were called, was a space that connected all the nearby hallways together, so as to make it easier for guests to go from one room to the other. It was a simple yet effective design, but only if you knew how the numbering system worked. Lilly was in such a rush, that she made more turns into the wrong hallway trying to find his room that to Luis it seemed more like a maze than a series of organized paths. If it seemed safe and he had no idea where to go, Luis told himself that he would try to read the door numbers to see if there was a pattern that would hopefully lead him out.
Before walking directly out into the large open area of the main hall, Luis peaked his head out from his hallway and checked to see if anyone was out here yet, he didn’t want to just barge into anyone mid-escape.
Out in the main hall was no one, to his great relief, as he turned left and began quickening his pace across this area. The low stone walls that lined the sides of the hall were covered in patches of overgrown vines with a similarly built walkway filled with grass and weeds between it cracks. The sight mixed in with ever growing darkness gave this floor a haunting atmosphere that one would expect to hear from an old wives’ tale. The only sources of light were the moon and the occasional lantern post that were sparsely scattered along the walls. It was odd though, the lanterns did not give off a usual red-orange flame that one would expect, but rather a white flame tinged in blue that would grow in intensity as he passed near them. This floor was making him nervous, he could feel his hair stand on end. It was still hard to believe that he was inside a building after all this, it might have been easier to tell him that he was halfway across the world.
He passed the stone benches and the occasional potted plant, some looking as if though they had long since expired, until he made it to the end of the main hall and turned right into one of the last hallway without checking.
He should have.
At the moment he had turned into the hallway, a young woman in tattered clothes was exiting it, causing him to bump directly into her.
He was instantly overcome by a mixture of shock and despair… shocked that he had crashed into a small woman on the way out, and despair because he had been caught in the act of escaping. Luis took a few steps back from the girl, who did absolutely nothing, as if though she had not noticed that he had walked into her. Eventually, she looked up at him, with a blank expression in her eyes that revealed nothing. Luis was frozen on the spot, unsure of what he should do as the girl continued to stare at him with her lifeless eyes.
She was in a terrible state of being, her clothes were practically rags that were caked in dirt, and probably hadn’t been washed, if ever at all. Her skin bore an unnatural tinge to it, it seemed to be turning as gray as stone, while her body seemed to show that she had not been eating much recently. Was she one of the undead? Not knowing what else to do, Luis did the one thing he could think of.
The girl tilted her head at the question, not knowing what he had just asked. Luis noticed a large scar that was crudely stitched together that went down her collarbone.
“Huh?” She replied, with the never changing expression of emptiness in her eyes.
“Sorry about that,” Luis said, trying his best not to stare back, “I didn’t see you.”
The zombie didn’t respond, she simply stood there motionless as Luis waited for a response.
’Is this what Lilly was afraid of?’
Luis almost laughed at his ridiculous notions from before. If this was how the undead on this floor were, then he could just stroll through the place without a worry in the world, for it would take them too long to even notice that he had passed them.
He excused himself out of habit, and began to walk around the still stationary zombie in order to get passed it.
Just as Luis was directly next to her, her eyes had widened, and if he were still in front of her he could’ve seen that a spark of life had shown through them. With almost no warning, she turned her head to face him, one of her arms grabbing onto his shoulder as the other grabbed his pants to pull them down.
“HEY! WHAT ARE YOU DOING!” Luis yelled as he pushed her back after being caught by surprise.
It didn’t take much to make her let go, but Luis felt a bit guilty after seeing that he had pushed her onto the floor.
“Oh I-…are you alright?”
The zombie had fallen in a sitting up position, but had somehow managed to maintain her hand in the same spot as it was to her when she had grabbed Luis’ shoulder. She did not make any movements, and simply sat frozen, very much like she had been doing before.
Luis was feeling significantly less comfortable now than he had been a few seconds ago, turning away from the girl so as to walk away as quickly as possible before she tried something else.
Suddenly throughout the hall, several of the doors began to open, and through each of them walked out women of varying ages, each wearing the same blank expression as the one Luis had pushed wore. All of them walked out of their rooms, they all began to look around until each one of them set their eyes on a now frightened Luis standing at the end of their hall. Step after step, they all began dragging their cold gray bodies towards him.
“What are you doing? Stay back!” warned Luis as he edged away from the forming mass of zombies in front of him.
The girl he had pushed was already getting up after a few of the others passed her, and she too began to head towards him as they all began to moan incoherently. The one closest to him actually leapt towards him, managing to latch onto his shoulder. Luis panicked and quickly tried to push her off of him, but she refused to let go as she began to grind her hips against him.
Luis’ eyes widened in terror as he tried his best to pull her off of him until finally his sleeve gave in and tore. Luis didn’t decide to wait to give her another opportunity and ran back the way he came through the main hall.
Once the girl noticed that Luis had disappeared, she dropped the torn sleeve and began to follow the mass that was headed towards him.
As he ran through the main hall, he could see that the other hallways were also filling up with zombies of their own, all of them suddenly fixated on him as they all began to walk in the masses in his direction.
Luis ran for his dear life, getting further and further away from the large crowd forming at the end of the hall while many others began to follow him as they left their halls. He didn’t bother looking back to see how far behind most of them were since he could see that many were leaving their hallways just as he ran past them.
If any of the halls were empty and if he continued to run at this pace, he might actually have a chance of escaping… assuming he could find the exit before he tired out.
His optimism was short-lived though, for as he reached halfway down the main hall, he could could see the halls ahead of him were beginning to let loose their zombies. They seemed to have been wandering aimlessly at first, but upon hearing his footsteps and seeing him, they moved to approach their new target.
He was trapped, and he knew it. No matter where he would go, the zombies were already there. He began to panic, frantically looking around for a way to escape from the nearing horde. Amidst his panic, he spotted an escape route, there was still one passage left that had yet to spew out any undead. It could have been that the zombies in that hall were just slow, or maybe that they would come out while he was going through it, but he didn’t have much of a choice at this point.
He ran towards the empty hallway, pushing and shoving the few zombies out of the way as they tried to grab him. One took ahold of his shirt and hung on to him, letting out a groan as she was dragged by him until she tore half of the shirt off of him while he made his way to the hallway.
To his great relief, it was still empty, so he made every effort to sprint to the end and make it to the next main hall. But, to his great dismay, just as he entered the hallway the doors at the end began to open and let out their undead. Surprisingly though, it was not another group of zombies like before, instead it was much more frightening… skeletons.
Luis froze up in sheer terror, he had never seen anything like this before, it seemed as if a young girl had her limbs removed and replaced with bones while half of her face was that of a skull.
They looked at him for a moment, with a similar blank stare as the Zombies, before beginning to slowly pace themselves towards him. They seemed to be able to react quicker than their fellow fleshy undead.
Luis turned only to see the other end already blocked by the several zombies from before, all of them heading in his direction. He looked at zombies as they neared him, then the skeletons…and back at the zombies.
There was no chance of escape, and he knew it.
Luis didn’t know what he could do, constantly shifting his view between the zombies and skeletons as they neared closer to him, there was no way that he’d be able to…
‘Is that my door?’
Sure enough, Luis had somehow managed to end up back where he started, in front of the door labeled 487. He was overwhelmed with frustration and joy when he realized that it was indeed his door, since he had failed leave the very place he was entering, and had found escape from the undead. He quickly searched for his room key as the zombies moaned while the neared him. Once in hand he desperately attempted to open his door, missing the slot several times. The skeletons were within a few feet of him, their arms extended, ready to grab onto their new prey.
The Man and the Statue
Not a moment too soon, Luis immediately slipped inside and slammed the door just as one of the zombies tried to grab him.
Luis just sat there by the door, panting as he listened to the zombies moan, scratch, and knock at the door while the skeletons did the same. After a few minutes, the sounds died out, and nothing could be heard, except for the occasional sound of footsteps as one of them passed by.
Luis let out a sigh of relief, glad that he was able to escape from them just in time. Although he was slightly annoyed that he was unable to make any progress on his escape, it seemed that there was no way he’d be able to get until morning… whenever in the world that was in this place.
The room was just the way he had left it only minutes ago, the candles were burning, the pentagram was in the center of the room, and books still seemed confusing. What in the world was he going to do?
He looked around the room before deciding to go to the bedroom and try to sleep till morning since he wasn’t going to be able to leave. He wasn’t tired… but there weren’t many options available to him. He was just thankful that he eaten before arriving here, since he doubted that he’d find food in this place.
Luis walked around the room, stumbling onto the bathroom and closet before finally reaching the bedroom. The door creaked loudly as he opened the door and peered inside. In front of him stood the rather large wooden framed bed along with a small desk and mirror with a similar design just off in the corner. The headboard of the bed was carved with an odd writing that seemed almost identical to the writings from the book Luis had seen before.
He walked towards the desk and sat down in the small wooden stool that lay in front of it. Before him stood the tall oval mirror with the odd ancient text etched upon its frame. On the side could be seen a chisel along with a small bag of gray sand and clay nearby, Luis picked up the clay and chisel to take a closer look at them.
“Why in the world would anyone keep this here?” he asked himself aloud.
“Maybe some of us like to look nice sometimes.”
Luis got to his feet and spun around, the chisel still in hand, his eyes searching the room for the source of the voice.
“Now if you don’t mind, could you put that down before you hurt yourself?” said the female voice.
Luis looked around, unable to locate the one who was speaking to him, but he eventually did as she said and left the chisel to rest back atop of the desk.
“Thank you…now who are you?”
Luis continued to search around the room, his eyes shifting left and right as he scanned the room for whoever was speaking to him as he stepped away from the mirror. He was hesitant to respond, but at least he wasn’t stuck in a room with a zombie…
“I’m Luis…I’m a new guest of the hotel.”
“Oh, you must be my roommate. I was wondering when you’d be arriving.” announced the now thrilled voice as a sudden gust of wind rushed past him from behind accompanied by the light rattling of chains, “It’s nice to meet you Luis, I’m Claire.” said the voice by his ear.
Luis jumped at the sound of her voice before taking several steps forward and turning around, finally getting a view of the speaker. Before him stood a woman of about his height, her skin as grey as the stones that made the room, her scarlet red eyes staring intently on him as she smiled at her new roommate.
Luis was stunned by the beauty that stood before him, doubting in his mind whether she was real or not. Claire stepped forward, the sound of her claws tapping the stone floor with the jingling of the few chains left on the one shackle she wore on her leg echoed throughout the room as she approached him. Not once did she remove her smile or stare from Luis.
As she drew nearer to him, Luis noticed her tail swinging side to side with each step she took, the horns that protruded from her head, the familiar markings written across her arms, her curvaceous body… he shifted his gaze back up towards her horns, trying his best not to stare at her well-crafted body. He knew he should probably be running… but it was difficult to tear himself away from the view before him.
Claire had started to walk around Luis, inspecting him all around as if though he were some kind of new product. He could hear her murmur something to herself as she walked around him, her eyes constantly surveying him as she did so.
After an approving smirk, she surprised him by wrapping her arms around from behind him, pushing her breasts against him as her tail wrapped his ankle in its embrace. Luis grew tense, unsure of what he should do. He could not run with Claire hanging to him; and even if he did, the zombies outside would surely get him.
Claire had begun to nuzzle his neck happily, sending a shiver down Luis’ spine when he felt her cool stone skin as she started whispering something into his ear.
“It’s so nice finally having someone around to be with…you don’t know how lonely it gets spending the cold nights up here…alone…” she murmured as she began to nibble his ear, her hand slowly rubbing his chest as it began to slither down his body.
Luis’ heart was racing, his breathing had quickened, and a slight hint of panic was visible in his eyes as her hand neared his groin.
Claire mistook this for excitement, and slowly began to massage his crotch with her fingers while a sultry expression overtook her face. Luis let out a small gasp as she did so, but was quickly silenced when Claire turned his face towards hers and planted her lips against his. She had forced a kiss between them; her tongue had already taken advantage and had begun to wrap itself around Luis’. Before he even realized it, Luis was returning her kiss with the same passion she was pouring into him.
Luis was forgetting everything from before, the zombies, the floor, the hotel, even Joe and how they got here; all that mattered at that moment was Claire. They continued to kiss each other for another minute before Claire broke their kiss. Her lust-filled eyes stared hungrily into his, a small coy smile formed onto her face as she felt the stiffened member through the fabric of Luis’ pants.
She released him from her grasp and walked towards the bed, her hips swinging side-to-side along with her tail before ruffling her wings. She laid down across the bed, revealing her voluptuous curves as her hand extended towards Luis, inviting him to join her. As if though under some form hypnosis, Luis slowly began to head towards his new lover, removing what was left of his clothes as he approached her.
He arrived at the side of the bed, naked as the day he was born, taking Claire’s hand as he lay beside her. She gently pulled him closer to her and kissed him once more before beginning her downward descent on his body, kissing and licking everything she passed until finally reaching his throbbing member. She swung her leg over him so that her body lay atop of his; she was staring intently upon his cock with a mixture of lust and wonderment. She continued to so until finally sticking out her tongue and experimentally licking the member from base to tip.
Luis moaned slightly as Claire did so, the cold sensation ran through his body with a mixture of ecstasy, his cock twitching each time she reached his tip. It was an odd sensation he should have expected, but as odd as it was, it was still a wondrous sensation. She then grabbed the base of his shaft and slowly began to pump it as she suckled on its tip. Luis groaned in pleasure as she pleasured him, feeling her massage his balls as she did so. He looked up and saw her glistening pussy mere inches away from his face, slowly nearing closer and closer towards him until he couldn’t resist it.
“Aaah!” yelled the gargoyle in delight as her lover dove into her awaiting folds.
Luis continued to lick her pussy, reaching as far as his tongue would allow him as his thumb rubbed against her sensitive clitoris. Claire grit her teeth together to keep herself from screaming before falling back onto his stiffened member, taking it all into her in a single push.
She quickly began bobbing her head up and down the length of his shaft as Luis quickened the pace of his licking, occasionally rubbing his tongue against her sensitive G-spot. With each of Luis’ licks, Claire could feel herself draw nearer to her climax, increasing her speed and pushing herself deeper onto his cock so that she could share the pleasure she was feeling.
Before she knew it, she climaxed, squirting her fluids into Luis’ mouth, causing some to spill over his chest. And like that, Luis released his warm thick seed into Claire’s mouth, which hungrily swallowed it, the symbols on her arms glowed red for a moment as she continued to suckle on his member to make sure that she had gotten the last drop.
“Mmm… delicious!” She giggled as she sat up and turned to face her lover, “Did you like it?”
“It was incredible.” Luis managed to say.
“Good, cause we’re not done yet.” She replied as she began to rise and position herself atop of his still hardened cock.
Claire teased his throbbing member as the tip rubbed against the lips of her anticipating folds. She gradually began to descend down the length of shaft, slowly taking it into herself, little by little until finally reaching the base. She steadily began to ride him, moaning ever so softly as she rose to the top and pushed down until her groin rubbed against his. Her hands pushed against Luis’ bare chest for support as her tail wrapped around his leg, hugging it tightly each time she descended. Luis held her by her thighs, helping her guide her way down his cock until it was as far as it could reach within her.
The slow passionate love making went on; increasing in speed with each deep thrust they pushed into each other. As they did so, Claire grabbed Luis and pulled him towards her, pushing his face into her breasts as she held him in her embrace, neither ever stopping their motions. She held him closely as she whispered something into his ear.
“Luis…don’t stop…I’m so close…” she managed to say between her panting.
Luis tried to replied, but was muffled by the large breasts; instead, his hand went around her and grabbed onto her tender ass cheeks, helping her ride his cock even harder.
“I’m…I’m…I’m…aaaghhhh!” Claire screamed as she climaxed onto Luis’ cock, her folds quickly contracting over his member causing him as well to climax into her.
Claire held Luis tightly as she climaxed, her wings spread out as wide as she could, and the symbols on her arms glowed a bright red, until she finally collapsed onto the bed with her on top of him. Both laid on the bed, panting after their act, neither saying a word to each other. Claire rubbed Luis’ head and smiled at him.
“That was amazing, but don’t get too comfy, the night is still young…” she told him
“Well then,” Luis replied, “I hope morning never comes.”
She kissed his forehead and held him tightly as she thought of the ways they would spend the night, never ceasing to smile now that she had found her lover.
Joe woke up, panting and covered in sweat as if he just woke up from a nightmare. He looked around and saw nothing but darkness.
‘It must be the middle of the night’ he thought as he sank back down.
He had dreamed that he was being raped by countless women for hours, each one of them having a turn at him no matter how much he pleaded.
“Thank goodness that was all a dream” he mumbled to himself as he reached for his blanket…feeling some sort of fur instead…
Joe immediately sat back up to look at what he was feeling. To his shock, he had grabbed the hair of one of the devil bugs from before, sleeping just a few feet away from him. There was a sound of grumbling as Joe felt the floor move; he looked down to see that the bed he was on was actually a pile of the very devil bugs from his dream.
Joe was beginning to panic, unsure of what to do…not noticing that the devil bug he mistaken for a blanket had woken up and was watching him. When he did see her, he froze, scared that she would wake up the horde and continue on from where they left off. The devil bug just stared at him for a moment before giving him a sweet smile and hugging him.
Stunned at the sudden change, Joe just sat there as the young devil bug held him in tightly between her arms before bringing him down back onto the bed of devil bugs. She nuzzled his chest for a minute before returning back to a blissful sleep with Joe safety tucked in her arms.
Joe laid there on top of the pile of sleeping devil bugs as one held him tightly within her arms. He spent the night thinking of how he would escape before falling asleep…even though deep inside…he knew he didn’t want to.
The next morning, Luis was woke up in the bed, completely naked, and smelled like he desperately needed a bath. He got up from the bed and turned to see Claire lying on the bed, just beside where he was. Luis smiled and leaned in to kiss her forehead before noticing a small piece paper on top of her. He picked it up and read what was written on it.
I’m sorry I can’t be with you in the morning, I can’t move around much when the sun is up. But I’ll be free once the sun sets and I’ll be waiting for you.
P.S. Gargoyles turn to stone when the sun is up in case you were wondering.”
It took Luis a moment to read the few lines of the letter, although he was skeptical of what he had managed to understand and turned to face Claire. Sure enough, Claire was made of cold hard stone, never moving from her spot no matter how many times Luis poked her. He decided that he might as well go back to the lobby and tell them he was planning to stay longer.
So Luis went to the bathroom, took a quick bath after figuring out which knobs to turn, got himself dressed in what was left of his clothes, and headed out the door. The sun was shining brightly as Luis strolled through the halls, as if forgetting about last night’s events, but Luis still had no idea which way the elevator was. He wandered the empty hallways searching for a way down, even if it were the stairs, but had no luck in doing so.
‘Where in the world is the dang elevator…they should put a map somewhere in here…’
As he turned the corner, he saw someone wearing an odd uniform standing at the center of the hall inspecting the nearby flower pot and rearranging the plants in it.
‘Maybe they work here.’ he thought as he headed towards the stranger.
Just as he headed towards the person, her ears shot straight up as she turned to face Luis. She stared at the oncoming Luis with her golden eyes, her ears twitched in his direction with each step that he took, and her tail wagged ever so slightly as he finally reached her.
“Umm…hi…do you work here?” Luis asked, somewhat timidly.
“Yes I do. How can I help you?” asked the werewolf.
“Well…I’m trying to head towards the lobby to check in for another night…but…I’m kind of lost. Do you know where the elevator is?”
The werewolf looked at him skeptically at first before glancing over his ripped shirt.
“Were you the new resident that came in yesterday… that stirred up the zombies?”
Luis was surprised that she knew this, but nonetheless nodded.
“So you’re Luis…well we better hurry, residential orientation already started.” She said as she grabbed his wrist and began dragging him through the halls.
“Residential orientation? What in the world is that? I’m just looking for the lobby!” He exclaimed as she pulled him through the turns.
She simply ignored him, dragging him through the halls until they finally reached the elevator. Once inside she quickly pressed the button labeled ‘L’ and the doors closed to begin the downward descent. They both stood there in silence for a moment, until Luis finally decided to ask once more.
“Okay, what in the world is Residential Orientation?”
“Hmm? Oh that’s right, this was your first night here. Well, after the guest stay here for one night, they have to attend the residential orientation that’s held each morning.”
“Okay…why do we have to do that?”
“Well…most guests tend to stay here a lot longer than one night, in fact most of them actually live here after they spend a night. The orientation is essentially to find out how long you plan to stay, and get all the legal issues over with if you decide to live here instead.”
Luis wasn’t really sure how to react to this information, so he simply nodded to what the werewolf was telling him.
The elevator doors opened to reveal the bustling Lobby, mamonos checking in, men being aided by their wives after the ‘ordeal’ from last night, another average day for the hotel. Luis didn’t have much time to watch the guests do their daily routines because as soon as the doors opened, he was quickly dragged through the lobby by the werewolf.
“Before I forget, my name is Aisha. I’m the floor manager of the Night-Time Suites.”
“Wait…you’re the manager?!” Luis replied
“Yes, and you better remember it if you’re planning to stay here much longer.”
Just as Luis was about to respond, Aisha made a quick turn towards a door and rushed Luis inside. Once inside, Luis gazed in amazement by the room in which he had just entered. Luis was at the entrance of the grand hall, it was even larger than the lobby itself, and scattered throughout the hall were several tables surrounded by newcomers asking information about the hotel. At the end of the hall were several tables serving breakfast to everyone, crowds of humans and mamono were surrounding this table before going out to see the others as some sat down and enjoyed their breakfast. High above the people was a large banner with the word “WELCOME” written on it.
“Welcome to the family.” Aisha told Luis before leaving him to head towards the exit.
Luis tried to take it all in at once, not sure of what to do in the situation. He looked towards the nearest table in which a single man was seated behind, pointing at other tables and directing other guests where to go. Seeing that he had no other option, he approached the crowd surrounding the table to find out what was going on. At the moment that he reached the front of the table, he felt something tug his arm from behind the crowd.
“Luis, wait up!” said a familiar voice.
Luis turned his head to be greeted by the only other person that knew him.
“JOE!” he exclaimed as he turned around and gave him a hug as if though he hadn’t seen him in years.
“Alright, alright, calm down. I’m guessing you were dragged here too.”
“Yeah I was. What in the world is going on?”
“I’m not so sure myself. I was heading towards the table over here when I saw you. What in the world happened to you?” He asked, pointing at Luis’ torn up shirt.
“Oh…just an incident with the neighbors…but what happened to you?” he replied as he gestured towards Joe’s shredded clothing and his ripped pants.
“…Let’s not go there…” He told him, looking down at the floor.
“So are you two just gonna stand there or are you going to ask a question.” beckoned a man from behind the table.
“Huh?” Both Luis and Joe had forgotten where they were for a moment until the man had addressed them.
“Yeah,” Joe answered, “what in the world is going on?”
The young black-haired man smiled at Joe as he repeated the question that everyone kept asking him.
“You just spent a night at the Covet Corner Hotel; we’re just here to make arrangements in case you want to stay a bit longer.”
“What do mean ‘arrangements’?”
“Well, here at the CC hotel, the first night to all guests, both mamono and humans alike, are free of charge. But, after the first night we do require some form of payment or service for you to continue your stay here.”
“Wait…what exactly do you mean by service?”
“By service, we mean some form of contribution from you to the hotel. For example, the arachnes tend to be in charge of making the uniforms for some of the staff as well fixing and mending some other articles of clothing. Another example would be my girlfriend, she’s a giant ant. Giant ants are in charge of anything that’s related to construction, demolition, remodeling…anything of that sort.”
“Alright,” replied Luis, “what about us? We’re not mamono, what can we do?”
“Well…just go to that booth over there,” the man replied as he pointed to a table just across the grand hall where several people were gathering, “that booth shows the available job for us humans. Of course, you don’t have to work for the hotel, it’s just the most convenient option. If you have another way to pay, then you can do that.”
“What did you choose?” asked Joe as he turned to see the booth.
“I man this table everyday for the daily Residential Orientation.”
“So all we have to do is get a job, and we get to stay here as long as we want?” questioned Luis.
“Exactly, if you have any questions, my name is Danny.” said the man.
Just as Luis was about to head to the other table, Joe grabbed his arm and stopped him.
“Are you seriously thinking about staying here?”
There was a moment of silence amongst the two friends, Luis staring at his friend as if though he was joking about the question. Joe never changed the expression of seriousness on his face as he waited for Luis to answer him.
“Umm…yes. Why do you ask? Aren’t you?” replied Luis.
“Ar-” Joe cut himself off from what he was about to say, taking a moment to form a response. “No!”
Luis stared at his friend, wondering what he meant.
“I… just can’t… I can’t just leave the town, they need me.” Joe said.
It was true, Joe was one of the few who could read in town, and he was the one responsible for all the records that were kept, ranging from crops yielded on the farms to monetary investments. His grandfather used to be the one who held this responsibility, but it was now his turn to do so. Luis on the other hand was not tied down like his friend. Luis did not own any land, he worked as an extra hand on other people’s farms, and his closest living family member was his cousin who he would surely visit even if he lived here.
“Are you sure you can’t?”
“I’m… I’m sure.” he hesitated.
“Well…” Danny tuned in, “we’re sorry that you can’t stay with us, but we understand. In order to check out, all you have to do is talk to Gramps and he’ll just have you sign out. You can come back whenever you want to if you ever change your mind though.”
“And where is Gramps?” asked Joe
“Over there” Danny said as he pointed to the exit of the grand hall where right beside it Gramps was leaning against the wall talking to a group of mamono all wearing some odd uniform, including Aisha.
Seeing that Danny was no longer speaking with the two, other guests began to surround the table and ask him questions about the hotel. The two friends looked at each other in a moment of silence once more.
“I guess this is goodbye…you sure you don’t want to stay?”
A small part of Joe did want to, as much as he did not want to admit it, but he knew he couldn’t just up and leave.
Joe stared at his friend for a moment before nodding back at him. Both of them shook each other’s hands before Joe headed towards Gramps. Luis stood there as he watched his friend walk away and spoke to Gramps. Joe began to explain things to him; he wasn’t sure what it was since he was too far away to hear them, but Joe seemed have been making an elaborate explanation as Gramps simply nodded to him. After about a minute or so Gramps finally replied, it must have been something important because Joe suddenly froze up once he heard this. Gramps went on for about a minute until Joe finally nodded his head before both headed out the door.
Luis wasn’t sure what had happened, but something told him that everything was going to be fine and that it was nothing to worry about. With that feeling in him, he continued on towards the Job Booth…until his stomach grumbled.
‘Maybe I should eat something first…then I’ll pick my job’ he thought to himself before heading to the breakfast table.
Two Months Later
‘Where are they?’ Joe thought as he took a bite of his bread with cheese while looking out the window of his small home.
It had been a while since he had left the hotel where his friend decided to stay. He was able to convince the town that he and Luis had left to visit Luis’ cousin to help him out again after checking out the mansion since he lived a few towns over in that general direction.
On the way back, Luis had found the girl of his dreams and decided to chase after her. Many of the neighbors said that the girl must have been a Succubus that surely tricked poor Luis into chasing her, but most of them believed his story and went on as if nothing had ever happened.
In the time between then and now, he did in fact go to visit Luis’ cousin.
It had been a while since he had been dragged to his farm, but he eventually managed to find it after asking the locals about it. There he was greeted by a familiar face, and the girl he had heard so much about known as a holstaurus. After seeing her shapely figure, he could see why Luis wanted to check the mansion for mamono…
Joe told him what had happened, about the mansion, the hotel, and how Luis had decided to move over to this odd place. He thanked Joe for telling him, giving Joe a few pounds of cheese and butter to show his gratitude before telling him that he would go to see Luis once the season had ended.
’Damn… this stuff is good…’ he thought as he ate the last bit he held between his fingers.
Joe had also gone back to the mansion.
He had managed to snag most of Luis’ belongings from where he lived and delivered it to him, but he also had a little chat with Gramps before leaving again.
‘He said it wouldn’t take any longer than a month for them to get here’ he repeated to himself as he reached for another slice he had already prepared.
He felt around the plate for a second until deciding to turn towards it to see that his food had gone missing. He shifted his gaze around room, wondering what happened to his bread and cheese. His room was nothing less than a complete mess; clothing scattered throughout the entire area, keeping anyone from seeing the dusty hardwood floor that lay under the mounds of old shirts, pants, and socks. Off in the corner was a pile of dirty rags, old notes, and such.
His desk that stood across from his bed was probably the most organized compared to the rest of the room. On it was a scrambled bunch of old papers with dark blotches from a spilled ink well, many crumbled and left in a heap at the corner, along with a pile of dirty plates from the previous meals Joe had eaten throughout the week. Luckily, he didn’t keep any of the important documents of the town in here, for they would’ve been lost or ruined before becoming of any use.
Just then, he heard something scurry through the room, only catching a small glimpse of it from the corner of his eye. He looked around the room once more, nothing had changed save the heap of clothes on his bed seemed to have tilted. Joe cautiously inched his way closer to his bed, trying his best not to make a sound. He finally reached the mound that stood at the edge of his bed; he slowly drew his hand closer and closer to throw the mound to the floor in hopes of finding the possible intruder.
When his hand took a hold on the mound, he suddenly felt something wrap around his chest from behind him. Surprised, he quickly turned his neck to see a young devil bug hugging him as she nuzzled his back.
“You finally made it!” he happily exclaimed as he turned towards her and returned the hug.
Behind the small devil bug stood the fifteen other devil bugs, many of them were smiling at him as the others made approving nods while they looked around the room. One was busy trying to pick the crumbs off her face as she picked up and examined one of the dirty plates on Joe’s desk.
“I’m so glad you all made it.” Joe told them as he held the young devil bug closer to him.
As much as he didn’t want to initially admit it, he could not stop thinking about them ever since he had left. Even so, he felt that he had a responsibility to fulfill for the town thus he made excuses so that he wouldn’t have to stay.
He remembered what Gramps said to him.
“You don’t wanna go…but you don’t wanna stay either. Why not just go and bring‘em with you? I mean, I don’t think they’ll say no, so why not?”
Joe hadn’t thought of that, and was glad that Gramps told him. He also told him that devil bugs were exceptionally good at hiding, and that he wouldn’t have to worry about others finding out about them if they weren’t the type to take kindly to mamono. Joe wasn’t entirely sure about it when Gramps told him this after his first night… but…
Then, without a seconds notice, Joe was suddenly thrown back onto his own bed, being held down by the small devil bug. The others slowly approached the bed, a mix of lust and hunger visible in their eyes as several of them licked their lips in anticipation. Joe looked down wide-eyed; he had almost forgotten how strong this little girl was. She looked up at him and smiled before moving up and planting a kiss onto him. Joe returned the kiss to her with the same passion she was to him. He thought back for a while as the devil bugs began to rip clothes off of him once more…he knew that this is what he always wanted…
END OF CHAPTER