Preying for Love

It was a hot summer night at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, and I, fueled by far too much booze mixed with the cocktail of emotions stirred up by the usual ugly divorce story that seemed to haunt married Marines, was about to say something utterly and truly stupid while arguing with one of my squad mates.

“Hey man fuck off, I’m never doing that again.”

“Bullshit, pass that bottle of vodka back. I’m willing to put cash down that you’ll be in love with some stripper in a couple months.”

“I’m never going to fall in love.”

And like that, I had said it. Famous last words. Now I’m not saying the gods heard me bitching in my barracks room after my divorce and everything that happened after that was literally taking me up on what must have sounded like a challenge to them… but it was awfully convenient regardless.

By the time my second term of service in the military was up, beings from another world parallel to our own had fully integrated into human society. A form of “conquest” if you will that would have made the Great Khan weep at the beauty of it’s efficiency and totality. And besides some severely bruised egos for the female half of the human species, casualties were almost non existent. We call them “monster girls”. Beings of legend and fable made flesh with almost infinite variety except one small detail. They were almost universally incredibly attractive, and overly amorous women, which lead to those bruised egos I mentioned. It’s hard to blame the guys who went monster girl only once the word got around that monsters had sex drives that could power a warship, were almost universally aggressively loyal, and of course, they’d come to you. It’s nice being desired, and it turns out a lot of guys out there just wanted to feel wanted.

Day to day life wise, things really didn’t change that much. Sure the world was more or less at peace, a lot of the more “aggressive” types of crime were non existent since most dark alleys where street thugs used to work were now hunting grounds for Ushi Oni, and feminism had turned into a reactionary anti-Monster faction. Watching a washed up former gender studies professor go a little too far hassling a monster girl on her way home from work and getting sent flying on top of a nearby roof for her trouble never ceased being funny. Ironically they found their friends in the more extreme variants of Christianity, Islam, etc. The types of people you’d expect to be calling for human purity.

Back to me. My hometown attracted a lot of monsters for one reason or another. Good climate, decent schools, maybe the high altitude had something to do with it? Who knows. Obviously the more waterbound girls weren’t as plentiful, but you could still find yourself getting dragged under for a cuddle and a quickie by a freshwater mermaid or something if you didn’t mind yourself and just happened to be single. If we had more on average of any kind of girl I’d have to say we had more lizard, dragon, and lamia type monsters; Not to mention the Rockies are one of the few places you can find Yuki Onna in any serious numbers.

So suffice to say, staying single the last couple years has been an adventure all its own… and nowadays I’m more or less ready to cave. I’ve watched my buddies picked off one by one by various monsters, all nice girls mind you, but the passiveness of the whole procedure bothered me somewhat. I’m still keeping to that stupid promise about not falling in love, but if I’ve gotta go down, it’d be nice to be able to have some say in who I go down on. It was while expressing this opinion to some of my ex-service buddies at the local VFW that I said the dumbest thing I’d ever say, after that whole dare to whatever divine being happened to listen to me.

I said I was going to go to a bar. Not just any bar. I was going to a bar that catered specifically to single monster girls. This place had a serious rep. Every town has a joint like this you know? Usually more than one. It’s not always a shit hole, covered in decor ranging from rusted farm equipment to various pieces of 1%er biker gang paraphernalia, with a bar top and table tops so sticky you have to apply a little force to get your glass up. From what we’d heard The Sober Oni really wasn’t bad in that way.

What it did have was reputation for attracting rough customers. The more dangerous kinds of monster girls that sometimes found themselves being made to feel unwelcome in polite society. Some of them are nice girls given an unfair rep, but a lot of them live down to their species’ reputations. “Our kind has been taking mates by force for centuries! Just because we’re living alongside humanity doesn’t mean we need to surrender our culture!” they’d say. Even among their own kind this got some hard, occasionally violent push back.

The Sober Oni however, didn’t judge. If you surprise married your new husband in their bathrooms you had to pay a cleaning fee and got your picture on the wall. The Sober Oni hosted the world’s fastest speed dating event. It was over as soon as a girl picked a guy she liked enough to drag off. The stories went on and on, each wilder and more hilarious or obscene than the last, but talk’s just talk. I had opened my big mouth, and I wasn’t going to back down. So the next night I shined my boots, and decided to go and get me a wife.

Prior to integration, when I’d been growing up, this place had belonged to a biker gang. One of their public facing club houses. After integration the local chapter of the gang had mostly left the area due to being dragged off by an orc war band who’d decided to “unite their tribes.” So the old club house had been bought up by some aspiring bartender, and after a couple months of renovation, larger doors and tables, and other monster accommodations, The Sober Oni had been born.

I gotta say as I pushed through the double doors it was everything I had expected and completely different all in the same steps. Lots of really nice wood work, some of it clearly hand carved and shaped filled out the walls. The tables were a rich cherry wood with a stunning laquer on it, and joking name aside, a couple large traditional kegs behind the bar indicated that the bar brewed some of its own stock. That was in addition to the collection of liquors and modern beers they provided. It felt like a very high end joint despite the rough reputation.

The customers however completely lived up to expectation. A couple thankfully married Ushi Oni were in one far corner, laughing boisterously with their husbands, the table clearly well and truly sauced. It made me shudder to think about what kind of drink could get a walking tank like an Ushi drunk. At the bar a baphomet who would be best described as a tall drink of water stood with a Manticore, chatting and carrying on like friends, each movement seemingly unintentionally displaying the considerable assets perched atop the Baphomet’s long legs.

Her friend was less of a knock out, but pretty in a terrifyingly feral way. Manticore were considered quite dangerous in general, but this one was clearly a bodybuilder. Despite all the rippling muscle however she was still quite curvy. If she’d been of more normal build she’d have been very easy on the eyes, as she was I could only describe her as an avatar of scare-rousal.

I slid up to the end of the bar closest to the door, thankfully deserted for the moment, still surveying the local populace, noting all manner of monster girl in the various booths. The bartender slammed her fist on the bar top, stealing my attention and shaking me from consideration of the environs I’d wandered into like a deer into a wolf den.

“Hey. Kid.”

The Red Oni bartender was all matronly hips and full bust only barely disguising a fighter’s build with more than a few scars. MILF incarnate. She was clearly happily married, with gods only know how many daughters and sons just from her build and how she carried herself, although the gold ring on her steel crushing left hand didn’t hurt as a hint either. She looked like she had two settings, pleasant and nightmare, and right now she’d zero’d in on me with the latter.

“Evening ma’am could I get a…”

She dropped her fist on the bar top again, silencing me wordlessly as she finally spoke.

“Do you know what in the nine hells you’re doing here?”

“Well I was going to have a drink…”

“There’s easier ways and safer places to get hammered for an unmarried man who wants to stay that way.”

“Maybe I don’t want to stay unmarried.”

The Red Oni sighs and drops a saucer and a clay bottle of the house sake on the bar top in front of me.

“Suicide huh? Well I guess the least I can do is give the soon to be deceased a free drink. I’ll bill your next of kin for any damage if you manage to stir any serious trouble up… or for the mess you make if you end up getting married in the bathroom. You’re cute, I imagine there will be some competition. You might get the pick of the litter if you survive.”

I take up the bottle of sake and poured a fair amount into the saucer, offering my hostess a salute before drinking. I’d learned to drink the stuff while I’d been stationed in Okinawa, and had always found the rice wine to be pleasant, but this Oni brewed stuff was something else. Smooth and sweet, but with hints that the other types of sake the establishment brewed could rip the doors off. I couldn’t have too much though. If I drank too much I’d be in the claws of the first monster I talked to. The bartender wasn’t quite done with me though.

“Free piece of advice. The girls aren’t too bad here, not like their reps. So don’t show too much throat and you should get by in one piece for an hour or two. Until someone loses it and drags you off by your hair if you haven’t already cuddled up to someone… so. Keep your bodily fluids inside you and we won’t have an issue. Clear?”

I nodded silently, processing the information. I sat quietly drinking my sake, getting appropriately warmed up for when my first opportunity presented itself. It turns out my first opportunity to go and flirt with a girl, something I hadn’t had a chance to do in close to a decade, was one of the first candidates I’d seen. My focus returned to the lovely Baphomet.

Baphomets are magic slinging demons from the depths of hell. More rational than their Hellhound and Succubus cousins, they nevertheless shared many traits with these other hell spawns. Namely sinful curves, a feature all three breeds of demon shared, a powerful body and strength that can easily lift a full size pick up like Hellhounds. Magic was their overlap with the Succubus. A cunning group of casters in their own right. Though a Baphomet mage is significantly more dangerous than the average Succubus in that regard. Baphomets work with forces outside of the mind and manipulation of spirit energy, which really ups their destructive potential. No one can top a Succubus for illusions, but if anyone could it would probably be a Baphomet.

Lucky for most people Baphomet were very rare, many of them only leaving the Unified Monster Territories to seek a mate or some particular arcane knowledge. Calling them demonic royalty wouldn’t be unfair, and their raw strength causes many of them to speak with an arrogance that comes off as Imperious. There were certainly worse women to be bound to if she got “enthusiastic” with her courtship. Many demons still joined the warrior monster girls in the “aggressive” forms of “dating”, and if I was going to start I might as well swing for the fences.

As her Manticore friend excused herself for a moment, I signaled the bartender to top off her drink. We weren’t terribly far apart to start with, so when she made eye contact I slid over a few seats and around the corner of the bar to introduce myself.

“Hello gorgeous, I didn’t know angels frequented places like this.”

Okay, so it wasn’t my best line. In fact it was downright awful. But it seemed to have the desired effect. The Baphomet blushed hotly, before looking back to her drink, watching me out of the corner of her eye as she took a sip.

“You know perfectly well I’m a demon.”

“Could have fooled me.”

“Who do you work for?”

Well. That caught me off guard. I hadn’t the slightest idea what she was talking about.

“I’m sorry?”

“Who do you work for? Men don’t approach women in this age, so clearly you’re working for someone. I don’t know how you found out who I am, and where I was, but you will certainly regret it when Leona comes back.”

Leona must’ve been the Manticore, who was apparently some kind of bodyguard. Fuck, just who in the hells did I chat up at this damn bar? I shoot the Oni cleaning glasses on the far end of the bar from us a dirty look, noting the wicked smirk on her face. Well if I was going to be entertainment I had to at least put on a good show before becoming Manticore bait.

“I assure you I’m just a washed up veteran who was taken in by your beauty. I don’t know much about monsters, and I don’t know who you are, but I’d love to find out, miss mysterious demon.”

Hah. That did it. The unexpected riposte to her accusations, and the completely flat, honest answer with actual interest in my eyes slipped her guard and got her blushing again. I really was interested at this point too. A mysterious beauty with a bodyguard? That’s some dime store romance novel stuff and I ate that shit alive while I was in Afghanistan. Gender roles really had flipped some what in the last couple years, so maybe getting swept off my feet by a princess or something like that was an actual possibility.

“I… I feel like you speak the truth. Very well, I am bored already in the absence of my companion, and you’ll do for a distraction. I am Dahlia, of the… well, never mind my clan name.”

Not that it would have made a difference. I couldn’t name any monster clans with a gun to my head, never mind the Baphomet ones. Still, I introduced myself and signaled for another ceramic vessel of sake with a triumphant look in my eyes, I had survived the first hurdle!

I poured the drinks, filling her saucer first, then my own like I’d been taught overseas and we traded abbreviated life stories. I told her some of the better stories from my military service, mostly aiming at the more impressive ones, but I also told some funny, self deprecating stories too, like what I call “my favorite concussion story.” In only a few minutes she was laughing and smiling with me quite openly, a nice change from how somber she’d looked when I’d come in.

We talked about some of our common interests, including a shared appreciation for some turn of the 21st century heavy metal bands. She even treated me to a few stories from her childhood, usually about growing up with magic, like accidentally turning her childhood pet into a Cerberus until her panicked mother could dispel whatever magic Dahlia had ended up working. I was actually having a lot of fun ‘till I remembered something. Her Manticore bodyguard would be coming back soon.

Right about then a massive golden paw settled on my shoulder. I could see a lot of the limb out of the corner of my eye. She had thick, powerful digits, claws that looked like they could rend steel without much effort, and the weight! She rested just some of the mass of her forearm on my shoulder, as if she’d expected me to give way. I’d only just managed to avoid keeping my shoulders level when she spoke in a surprisingly feminine tone.

“Pri… Mistress Dahlia, who is your new… guest?”

She looked down at me with eyes that had a message so clear it might as well have been written down. If I made the wrong move around the Baphomet next to me, no one would ever find my body… if I was just lucky enough that she only killed me. Manticores might have been famous for the more recreational uses of their tails, but the powerful appendage swishing behind her certainly sounded plenty dangerous to more than just chastity.

Dahlia looked at me with pleading eyes, she was apparently fairly intimidated by her bodyguard when her ire was up too, and she was at a loss to explain the round of flirting we’d just shared. I swallowed my fear as quietly as possible, before rotating slightly to to face the cold faced Manticore as if I was just welcoming her back to the table.

“Good evening I…”

“Am leaving.”

“…am leaving, yes.”

Leona’s tone brokered no argument.  My term of military service was not a pretty one that you stick in recruiting commercials.  I’ve stared death square in the eye. I’ve killed, and had men die in my arms. Some people in my chain of command figured me doing enough of both of those things, and managing to stop a few of the latter made me a hero. I didn’t agree. Maybe knowing that you can understand the gravity of the situation required to shake me. Leona’s icy glare had shaken me to my core.

So, with a furtive glance back towards Dahlia I walked away from the bar until I couldn’t feel the Manticore’s gaze on my back. Dahlia looked pissed when I glanced back again, but determined to avoid Leona’s wrath I did the only thing I could. I kept drinking at various tables, while I waited for the chance to get back over to Dahlia again. She was… intriguing. A bit younger than me certainly, and less experienced in some senses, but we had things in common and she dropped my guard even as I dropped hers. Plus she was absolutely captivating looks wise. This was a Monster Girl bar I’ll remind you. The number of bodies that would make cosmetic surgeons weep was equal to the number of monster girls presently in the room. That she stood out in a crowd of monster girls was impressive as hell.

Or maybe you’re falling for her.

The thought came unbidden to my mind, and I almost waved it off physically as well as mentally. You could enjoy someone’s company without loving them right? Or potentially falling in love with them. You could enjoy her company first and foremost couldn’t you? Of course you could. Besides, I reasoned to myself, we’d only just met tonight. Sure monster girl courtship procedures tended to be more of a sprint than a marathon, sometimes rather literally, but that didn’t mean that was what was happening now. Right? Right.

Thus convinced I returned my attention to the group of Orcs I’d found myself sharing drinks with. The green skinned warrior women were excellent company, and the members of the group that had husbands had all married veterans or active duty guys, so I had some comrades in arms to jaw with which made for a great time all around. We swapped stories and traded insults in a chaotic mass of communication that only made sense to those who’d enjoyed that type of close brother or sisterhood.

Still, my mind and eyes continued to drift Dahlia’s way, and a few times I thought for sure that I’d met her eyes or caught her looking at me. Little did I know that the Baphomet wasn’t about to have her fun ruined by her bodyguard. The mage had been scheming this entire time after her initial arguments about bringing me back fell on deaf ears. To Leona’s mind, they were at the bar on a mission. In Dahlia’s mind she’d just changed her objective.

I was informed of this change of plans for the evening when Leona vanished into the back again. Dahlia threw some money at the Oni and ran across the bar. She leapt at me and wrapped her arms around my neck as I sat at the table. Then we vanished in a burst of white light. Leaving the rest of the bar either stunned or in the case of a certain Manticore, absolutely furious.

When the teleport spell ended, I found myself in a tangled pile of limbs with Dahlia in a park that I knew was at least still in my hometown. It could have been in hell itself for all I cared at the moment though. Dahlia had cuddled up to me very aggressively and she felt even better than she looked. Her lovely curves and tan skin were combined with silky black hair and soft black fur, every little bit of her seemingly designed to entice me.

Under the light of the moon, Dahlia’s instincts seemed to take over, and she pushed me down into the soft grass. The baphomet straddled my hips in a smooth, graceful motion, her pulse starting to pick up as she ground herself against me.

“See what you’ve done to me? You’ve got me all worked up… I’ve never felt desire like this before.”

I didn’t have any response to that. My own pulse had started racing, my breath coming in soft pants as my body responded rather enthusiastically to her. She produced a giggle of delight as she rubbed her body against something a bit more substantial than just my jeans. The Baphomet leaned in close to me and whispered in a breathy tone of voice that could give a stone an erection.

“You know what this will mean… it’s especially true for my kind. Don’t worry, I’ll show you a world you won’t be able to believe exists. All you have to do is be mine.”

Well. If she was convinced, who I was I to argue? I wasn’t completely sure about this, true. I wasn’t completely sure it was right but… I wasn’t fooling anyone. I’m sure it would have been clear to any passerby who happened to notice us getting on our way towards rutting in a bush that I was at least infatuated with the beautiful young demon on top of me. I’d been prepared to be carted off in far less agreeable circumstances.

I didn’t waste words responding to Dahlia. I leaned up and kissed her instead as we started to help each other undress. I’d thought she looked good with her clothes on, but every inch of cloth that came off her body was a revelation. Every inch of caramel skin, her intriguing tan lines inch  by inch as her dress came off was a feast for the eyes. Dahlia turned her back to me and slowly undid her black, lacy bra. She turned ever so slowly to reveal the bounty of her chest to my hungry eyes. A rounded, lightly tanned set of ever so perky C cups topped with pink, sensitive nipples, not too big. Not too small. Perfect.

I stopped her from joining our bodies together immediately to feast upon that perfect pair of breasts. My tongue rolled across each nipple in turn, and teased them to their erect state. It would have just been rude to not give those lovely little nubs a suck wouldn’t it? Her soft cries filled the air around us, and was practically giving me the shakes. I wanted her like a junky wanted his next needle. I needed this… and so did she.

As the strings of her side tie panties came undone, and she finished fiddling with my belt to yank my jeans off with all the flourish of a stage magician showing off a new trick, there was an unspoken consensus between us. There would be time later on, another night, another day, for sharing pleasures, long, slow, indulgent. Right now though we needed to get straight down to business.

I rolled her onto her back, only to be treated to the sound of her tiny goat tail thumping away at the ground wildly under her plush backside. My hands stopped only briefly to get a handful of her heart shaped ass. Investigation of that too would wait for later. Instead I slipped between the legs, still clad in the lace stockings that were her only remaining piece of clothing. I slid down into her arms, kissing her deep and hard as we fumbled our way into position, our tongues twining together as our saliva mixed.

Finally we got everything lined up and I slowly started to press into her. Hot. Hot as hell even if you’ll pardon the pun. Soaking wet too. Felt kinda like biting into a perfectly ripe peach, succulent juice running with abandon. Her sex clung tight to me as I entered. The sensation was something like putting on a condom that was a couple sizes too small to start with. After a couple good thrusts into her depths though, she seemed to relax, and her interior adjusted to the intruder that was being pushed into her depths.

Dahlia had a look of discomfort on her face for the first few minutes, but she waved off my concern with a vicious growl as she gritted through whatever pain she might have been feeling.

“Fuck me you handsome son of a bitch or so help me I will use whatever magic it takes to make you fuck me.”

Well. What the lady wants, the lady gets, right? My lady any way. I didn’t have time to think about that subtle shift in thought. “The lady” to “My” lady. In that moment I was as good as done regarding that old promise of mine. I just didn’t know it yet. In my defense, I was incredibly distracted.

Daliah started getting vocal, very vocal. I later found out it was only a handy bubble shield she’d cast to keep the sounds of our love making away from prying ears that had stopped us from being discovered by an errant passerby. Not that I cared at this point. A TV news crew could have shown up and I wouldn’t have been able to stop until Dahlia and I had reached mutual satisfaction.

Time seemed to slow down in those first moments of passion like a particularly good slow motion sequence in a movie as our bodies came together with wet, energetic smacks of flesh on flesh. A light sheen of sweat had coated us in no time at all, and Dahlia’s nails had left furrows in the skin of my back that slowly welled with blood. Through it all she kept talking to me. Talking dirty. Talking sweet. Begging for more. Harder. Faster. Finally devolving into nothing but moans and screams of pleasure as lightning began to build between us.

Our almost innocent shared passion had started to build a charge of energy between us. Dahlia would later tell me that this charge was practically an arc of mutual magical energy from partner to partner. A very critical part of marriage and pairing for Baphomet was forming this bond, as it allowed both partners to share and generate more mana, which exponentially increased magical potential.  Usually it was something that took a fair bit of work and preparation. Having a bond form “in the wild” so to speak wasn’t unheard of, but was considered extremely rare. We managed it in that bush in the park, thrusting at each other wildly like a couple of rutting teenagers in full grip of our hormones, until the charge peaked, and ripped through us like a lightning bolt, kicking our bodies violently into a series of powerful orgasms.

We were left panting in each others arms, trying to remember how to breath properly, never mind handle complex things like speech. Dahlia stroked me tenderly as I kissed her skin and rubbed her back idly in turn, content to just lay together and enjoy the afterglow. A physical mark of the bond was etching itself into our skin, but it was just one sensation lost in what felt like an ocean of shared affection. Finally, I regained some of my senses and took a look down our bodies. Pleased with how good she looked next to me.

Then I noticed two things. First I realized I had orgasmed inside her. Not that I’d have had an choice. I had no doubt she’d have forced me back in with magic if I’d had anything close to the presence of mind to pull out. Not that I minded. There was something utterly satisfying on a very primal level about having marked her like that. As my eyes traced down to where our bodies joined, I noticed red mixed in with the other fluids.

“Shit! Dahlia you’re…”

“Shh… are you always this noisy after love making?”

“No I, it’s just you’re…”

Dahlia raised an eyebrow at me with a coy smile “Do human women not bleed the first time they lay with a man?”

It takes me a second to put two and two together.

“Wait. You were a virgin?”

“Indeed. I was very serious about saving my chastity for my first and last partner… I am so very glad to have found you at last.”

I slumped against her slightly, the sheer magnitude of what we’d just shared making its way into my sex addled brain now. Undeterred Dahlia pressed onward.

“I think you felt it too, that we were compatible. I couldn’t take my eyes off you from the moment you entered the bar… I noticed you glancing my way a fair bit too, even before Leona chased you away. To think she chased you off because I was supposed to be waiting for some prophesied prince…”

“A prince?”

“Indeed, an oracle had a very specific prophecy concerning me, a message from the gods directly. I was to come to this city, and what turned out to be this place, on this date, and I would meet the prince my heart has longed for. Perhaps he’s since turned up… but it’s his own fault for being late if he missed out.”

“Hmmm. Can’t say gods and prophecy are part of my knowledge base.”

“Nor mine, and I am considered quite the accomplished mage amongst my people. I suppose I need to tell you that I…”

Before she could finish her sentence an outraged shout from a familiar female voice interrupted us.


Well. Shit, that was a bit of a curve ball. I avoided the lethal glare of the furious Manticore by focusing on the now embarrassed Baphomet, who was doing a poor job of covering herself with her paws.


Three sets of eyes bounced back and forth from each other for a few moments before the Manticore started to advance, a snarl on her face.

“Princess! How could you? Even if you choose to discard the prophecy, have you no decency? Are you some common milkmaid as to give your maiden head to some commoner in a bush? And another thing I…”

Leona stopped dead in her tracks, eyes locked on the back of our left wrists.

“Stars above is that a bond mark?”

Leona didn’t get the chance to be answered immediately. Dahlia was nervous as all hell when Leona had turned up. Scared even, and when the rather angry bodyguard to apparent royalty had started to advance on us she flinched. Apparently when a mage flinches, magic can happen. A defensive measure, much like how when some people flinch they automatically block with their arms. In this case a flash of light arced out at Leona, and the Manticore toppled to the ground with a groan.

I confess, I was in shock. I had still been working on processing taking Dahlia’s virginity and having it confirmed that she wasn’t going to accept this being a one time thing. It was one thing to “know” that, and quite another to hear it straight from the demon’s mouth so to speak. Now I’d heard she’s royalty and I had some sort of strange magical tattoo on the back of my hand, a perfect match to the mark that had appeared on Dahlia’s hand.

“Wait!” She exclaimed, heading off my questions before I could ask them. “I can explain everything. Mostly!”

“Only mostly?”

“I am a princess, as Leona said, though the title is slightly different from the old Baphomet royal line… and we have very little practical power any more. The UMT council handles all our government affairs. Of course, the current Baphomet ruler has a seat on the council but that’s besides the point!”

Dahlia stopped herself, apparently feeling she was babbling a bit. Clearly feeling surprisingly self conscious for someone who’d just lost their virginity. I took control of the conversation to get us back to the important details before the Manticore woke up from whatever magic that had just taken her off her paws.

“Alright, so you’re a princess of the Baphomet clans back in the UMT. You were here with your bodyguard because of a prophecy.”

A quick nod indicated that I was approximately up to speed. I raised my left hand, displaying the mark on it.

“So… what’s this?”

“It’s almost certainly a bond mark, a kind of magical binding between a Baphomet and her partner… it’s something comparable to the type of magical bond a vampire enters into when feeding from a willing partner. Except it’s an exchange of mana or spirit energy… you must have exceptional spirit energy because I’ve never heard of a bond forming so quickly be…”

The explanation cut off with the slightest gasp from Dahlia, as she stared over my shoulder, to where Leona had been laid out. Her eyes widened a bit, and the air warmed behind my back with a now somewhat familiar leonid presence. Her panting breaths were warm on my bare skin in the cool night air. It would have been incredibly arousing if I hadn’t been more than a little terrified.

“…I ah. I don’t think the spell I used on Leona was a stun spell.”

“I figured. Any idea what it is? She’s a… she’s not talking.”

“Well… I’ve been working with Succubus magic a lot recently. I might have hit her with an arousal spell. A very strong one.”

That made me blink a bit, as I mentally reviewed what I knew about Manticores.

“Don’t they have rather high natural sex drives to start with? And a instinctual drive to hunt for strong sources of mana? Like I apparently am?”

Dahlia’s eyes told me all I needed to know, if the heat coming off Leona’s powerful body hadn’t told me already. I turned slightly to try and face the Manticore, and treated myself to an eyeful of very, very well defined abs. I hadn’t known I liked that feature on a woman until literally right now. There was quite a lot to like on Leona’s body in general. Fair skin, lovely tawny fur, and a shock of shoulder length red hair provided contrast and color around the most eye catching features of her figure. Her well sculpted musculature absolutely radiated strength and violence. Her femininity was as extreme as her musculature. Leona proudly displayed a perky pair of breasts that simply had to be a DD at least, while her tight waist and killer abs gave way into a shapely pair of hips and powerful thighs.

It was then however, that her tail snaked its way towards me. The bulbous tip was barbed, both with what the Marine Corps had labeled “combat spikes”, purely offensive pointy bits that could rend flesh even as the strength of the tail itself shattered bone, and venom spikes. It’s the venom that get Manticores the most press, even though most people don’t know much about it. Manticores actually produce several venoms, but the powerful aphrodisiac is the only one you actually hear about mostly because it does such a good job of inflaming imaginations.

It looked like I wouldn’t have to imagine what being injected with Manticore venom would be like for long, though. Leona’s tail extended one of the slender venom spines, the sharp point quite literally dripping with Leona’s magically enhanced desire. Right before the spike could jab into my skin however, Leona’s tail jerked back with a spasming motion. Dahlia had decided to step in.

The way the Baphomet moved now was… like night and day really. Dahlia seemed older, more sensual somehow as she moved around her bodyguard, a hand trailing across her muscles gently. When she spoke her voice sounded like it had been dipped in honey. I know now that she was using a form of hypnotic magic, but at the time I was a bit worried that this was the real Dahlia, and the one I’d just had a tumble with was nothing but a character designed to lure in what she considered a suitable partner.

“My dear sweet, loyal Leona… you seem so tense. Your hunger is so strong I can feel it.”

“I… have failed you mistress. I…”

“No, perhaps it is I who failed you. I have not allowed you much freedom these past few years, not seen to your needs as my station demands. Noblesse oblige. You are my responsibility. I hope you can forgive me for putting you in this position.”

Leona’s face became visibly strained, her attention divided as she tried to keep her focus on something other than me.

“Princess that is not… so you have always been most generous with me. Even distilled your own mana into potions for me to drink.”

Dahlia’s tone sharpened “Don’t lie to me Leona dear. It’s unbecoming of a lady and you’re terrible at it… you probably haven’t been able to keep your mind off him since you touched his shoulder. I saw your eyes widen, I dismissed it at the time, but now I wonder. Manticores can sense strong mana can’t they? How strong is our new friend?”

“He… he would make a strong mage.”

“And a good husband to a certain Manticore?”

“Of course not Princess. He is bound to you now, and he might not be compatible with me anyway.”

“Oh? Was it a lack of compatibility that had you glancing his way all night when you thought I wasn’t looking? I know you listened in on our conversation. A warrior, a nice smile, shares your interests in guns, our tastes in music… and I know you like a man with a bit of a limp too.”

Leona’s ears fold, her blush getting deep and red enough to trigger a ICBM launch warning from the sheer heat of it. She gave a short nod seeming to agree with the Baphomet’s rather ruthless assessment. Dahlia patted her servant’s head gently as if offering her a reward for honesty before continuing.

“As for the bond… what does that matter? Is polygamy so unknown at court? Or does my own mother share my father with one of the other noble heads of house?”

“Of course Her Majesty does but that is…”

“Politics I know, but I rather like you Leona. Love you even. It’s why I expended so much effort to keep you with me… for so many years of faithful service, so many by my side… if this is the boon you ask of me, I shall grant it. Only if you ask.”

Whatever she’d been doing it clearly worked. Leona’s body language had become more relaxed, her tail dropping from a predatory striking position to its more normal resting posture as her breathing became less labored. Dahlia even reached up and scratched behind one of her big fluffy ears. The only evidence of the Manticore’s aroused state was the blush on her face, and the slick juices coating her inner thighs.

“I… I… Princess… I would, join you both, if you’d have me.”

Goddamn. It was enough to stop a man’s heart. The powerful and aggressive Manticore left so meek and needy. It probably wouldn’t last very long, but it was damn cute while it happened. That Leona had caved so readily was more surprising than the suggestion of polygamy. The practice was supposedly common enough in the UMT, and it’d been gaining traction in the rest of the world as well. I hadn’t expected Dahlia to offer it as a solution. Princesses in stories really aren’t known for sharing after all, and the monster princesses in various media hadn’t changed that reputation at all. Dahlia knelt down next to me, and gently brushed my cheek with her lips. Her voice had returned to its usual pitch now that we were out of danger.

“Tell me… does my loyal servant appeal to you? She is beautiful is she not?

“…That seems like a trick question.”

“Hardly. I have willingly offered my loyal servant a chance to ask of me anything she might want… after my own magic accidentally rendered her body as more honest. I love her like a sister, whether she accepts that level of affection from me or not. If you find her attractive, and this little… proposal acceptable than it shall make me glad… I know that this is a lot to take in. An ambush within an ambush, if you need the time I shall grant it, but…”

She looked over her shoulder at the nervous Manticore.

“…it would make me happy to join with Leona like this.”

Crap. I felt my own resolve crumbling at that. All of this had happened so damn fast. First Dahlia, and now Leona, apparently at the same time? Come on. If I could even survive that kind of sex, it was wrong wasn’t it? I had wanted to get to know Dahlia for a while, to come to understand this bond we’d somehow generated between us, but Dahlia had asked this of me too, and I couldn’t deny Leona being attractive. Monster girls really did do things differently it seemed, but in for a penny, in for a pound. I’d said I had gone out tonight wife hunting to my friends. It looked like I was going to win that particular bet in spades.

“If… it is what you want, and what she wants I’m already in uncharted territory, and it’s not so much that Leona’s beautiful as she’s stunning.”

“Hmm, perhaps I need more time in the gym.”

I shot Dahlia a look. She’d known exactly what I meant, as the pleased with herself look and giggle fairly indicated. Still, her smug look was more cute than arrogant. She surprised me with another kiss, long, slow, gentle. Not the needy, frantic kissing we’d just indulged in as we tore each other’s clothes off. Finally, after she’d tasted me thoroughly, seemingly savoring the moment and my flavor she gestured Leona over with a sensually cocked finger. The manticore almost nervously settled on her knees next to Dahlia, and the Baphomet gently grabbed hold of her tail.

“Now, be a good girl and introduce yourself Leona.” The more mature, controlling, seductive voice was back. Something about the situation had really flipped Dahlia’s switch it seemed. Leona however is completely compliant, the role reversal from how they’d seemed when I’d first met them was truly fascinating, but Dahlia was drifting the end of Leona’s tail closer and closer to my thigh. Which distracted me from any serious observation.

“I… uh. Good evening, my name is Dame Leona, I have no last name and am a foundling of m’Lady Dahlia’s house. I am, inexperienced, but I hope I can be of service to you and that you might come to tolerate me.”

Dahlia sighs. “Leona, look at his eyes… his manhood, he clearly doesn’t mind your presence, and he’s not a noble. He’s not even from our nation. He’ll treat you like you deserve… as an equal.”

The “or else” at the end of that was left unspoken, but I heard it clearly enough. Not that I had much worry about that. The only issue I had was the sheer… difference of this situation. I was… nervous, as much as it shames me to admit. I even regretted setting out to whatever lead me to this situation on a dare. It wasn’t fair to them. Either of them. Both. Or any of the other Monster Girls in that bar. Sure it would have worked, possibly in fashion worth laughing about for years to come, but would it have still been wrong?

I reached for Leona without another word, and pulled her powerful figure down into my arms. Leona offered a painfully cute squeak before she snuggled up against my chest, and began to growl happily as I stroked her muscular back like I was petting an over sized house cat.

“You’re fine. Just the way you are… you have nothing to prove to me.”

It was a sweet moment, the first of many to come there was no doubt. It was in that moment as I felt the weight of the Manticore, the softness of her skin and fur, and the generous flesh of her feminine curves that I felt the kiss of one of her spines against my skin. We moaned in tandem, the act of injecting the aphrodisiac apparently having some sort of comparable effect in the Manticore, and her panting picked up again, almost instantly back in the mood. It took me a few seconds to join her though, as fire rushed through my veins. It was terrifying on some level. I’d never been bit or stung by any serious venomous creature before, but I reasoned that the sensation of her venom in me was similar. Each beat of my heart drove her venom through my body, spreading like wildfire until I was saturated with it. The burning gave way to the strongest desire I’d ever felt in my life. I’d joked before about being “hard enough to fuck concrete”, but I felt harder than an armor piercing tank shell I’d handled once. It was just a hair’s breadth away from being painful.

By the time I’d mentally recovered enough to return to what was going on around me, Dahlia was guiding Leona into position, and had pulled an ancient book from somewhere. She was chanting in a language I’d never heard, and strange energies were filling the space around us. The colors were throwing interesting shades of light on Leona’s fair skin as she slowly grinded her lips against the tip of my cock. Her hot fluids dripped onto me, coating me in what felt like an instant. Time however was moving oddly at this point. The magic, a spell for gods only knew what, the venom coursing through my veins, my heartbeat pounding in my ears, all blended into one as she plunged herself downward.

Plasma arced between us as a hard jolt of energy shook Leona and I to our cores. It made me lose what little control I had left. Everything that followed became a haze after Leona took me into her. Her shattered virginity devolved her to her rawest instinct, and what had been a nervous, tangled love making with Dahlia gave way to a rough, bestial rutting with Leona. I felt uncoordinated, and had an almost panicked energy flowing through my veins, but with how she kissed me, how she moved, how she milked my cock desperately with her body again and again as our hips clashed together, it was an indescribable passion radiating from her like heat. Her hips didn’t skip a beat, and she pounded down onto me with pelvis-bruising enthusiasm as she kissed me for the first time.

It’s one of the few concrete memories I have from our first time together, the sensation of her lips. Her soft, plush lips, were like ice on my skin, a tender chill caressing my lips before her tongue slid into my mouth. She had a flavor like citrus, and her tongue intertwined with mine like it was just another place for us to embrace each other. My hand slid up behind her ear, stroked her soft fur, and held her in place, a tender island in the middle of our passion.

What followed that moment was hours of sex according to Dahlia. The Manticore venom gave me endurance and stamina well beyond that possessed by a mortal man. My cock didn’t flag once, not even with nearly constant orgasms. Dahlia had joined us after the first few orgasms, after the same mark we shared had burned it’s way into Leona’s flesh, and together we celebrated this newfound gift.

Every position you can imagine that three people can achieve we tried. Years of sexual exploration we achieved in a night. From the male fantasy of a double blow job, to the sublime, unique sensation of Leona milking me with her tail, her spines injecting more venom almost automatically every single time I blew my load into her. Then there was the magic augmented sex with Dahlia that I’m still reasonably certain wasn’t possible, and I still lack the words to describe.

Finally as dawn came, we collapsed into each other’s arms. We caught our breath as a sleepy Dahlia took the time to cast a spell to keep us concealed from any rude strangers, and curled into each other. We were a pile of tangled limbs and flesh, each one of us utterly sated in the others. There were no words needed. Not right now. We understood each other. Perhaps it was the bond. This strange magic that I had yet to truly understand the meaning and consequences of. Perhaps it was a specter of emotion conjured from a couple hours of constant physical intimacy. Maybe it was something else, but as we curled up together to rest, there was no doubt in our hearts, just peace.

As the Princess, the bodyguard and the commoner rested following their physical declaration of mutual affection a figure lounged on a nearby cloud. Strong though the princess’s spells might have been, they meant nothing to the winged woman in white. She stretched slowly before cracking her knuckles and grabbing her clipboard, scribbling a few notes to herself, gathering her things and preparing to alight.

“Hmm… one challenge met, and given back twofold, one wish fulfilled, and one hopeless case accounted for, and I didn’t even need to use an arrow!”

This was going to be a fun report to turn in. The goddess always did like a nice clean wrap up of multiple threads with a single needle after all. The manticore alone had been particularly hard case, and the most involved part had been passing off that prophecy. The man in question might not actually be a prince… but he was about to be, and that counted in some sense didn’t it?

The angelic figure chuckled to herself, taking a moment to enjoy the warming rays of dawn’s light. She almost took off, but thought otherwise and stopped herself. The angel twisted her hand through a series of complex sigils, invoking divine power down upon her latest concluded case. Perhaps she didn’t need to bless them as well as arrange things, but the goddess did like her happy endings, and that poor Manticore had been so cute!

“No, She won’t mind that. A job well done.”

And with that she took to the sky, vanishing in the blink of an eye into the blue. The only sign of her presence was the swirl of a single white feather, which drifted down towards earth, carried by a gentle breeze to rest by the sleeping trio. Their love would not be an easy one. Such things are not promised after all, even with divine favor. Nor was that love assured in the first place, but such thoughts were for when they awoke. This moment was reserved to the peace of finding something treasured and precious, that they didn’t even know was missing. Their trials and perils would come, but this moment belonged to them in its entirety.


A note from the author:

Hello everyone and Happy New Year! This first story for 2017 is also my Valentine’s Day story for the year!

I’ve got some fairly big projects in the works, including some redrafting for most of last year’s stories to bring everything into line with my recently formalized Under Heaven setting. It’s the same MG stories you’ve been getting, in a mostly modern setting, but we’ve got a distinct lack of Demon Lord, and some other key distinctions, including how monster populations act and interact with each other. Beyond a big adventure story that will take… however long it takes to be honest, there’s all sorts of stories on the horizon, and I’m considering posting what amounts to an exposition dump, dramatis personae and glossary to paint the big picture for the setting. It’ll all be explained one place or another in the text, but having it all together in one spot can be helpful I find. Drastic efforts will be made to not have anyone referring to that in the middle of reading a story. If that happens, please tell me! I want to fix it to ensure that you, my readers, enjoy a cushy, enjoyable reading experience. 

The stories that are properly part of the setting can be found under the “Under Heavens Setting” tag here on TFT for now. If it changes it’ll be noted at the end of a story, and reflected in all the appropriate stories tags. 

Like I said at the end of my Christmas story, thank you all again for an exciting 2017, and I’ll look forward to seeing where everything goes during 2018.



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8 thoughts on “Preying for Love

    1. In the end I write characters, not archetypes, or at least I try to. Is the Princess in disguise and her somewhat tsundere/repressed bodyguard wildly new? No. But this is an intro story. Development will come when I come back to this trio later.

      As for Lolis… Yeah. Sorry. I refuse to write it. It’s not my bag. That type of thing is in every community, and I wish KC would push Sabbath and Lolis a little less… But he can do his thing. I’ll do mine.

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