My arms were wrenched above my head, and I was suddenly in the dark. In the time it took for my eyes to adjust from light vision to dark, three things became obvious. I wasn’t in Dad’s office. I was hanging by my wrists on a wall. There was a mouth prying mine open. I screamed and kicked forward, but I hadn’t noticed my ankles being bound to the wall. I was chained to a wall with a guy making out with me.
A dark, feminine chuckle sounded from my right, and the man pulled away, giving me a clear view of Fantastic, Mira’s toy. His hands were on my waist, holding me still as I began to snap out of my surprise and into defense.
“What in the heck is going on!?” I yelled.
Mira and Fon smirked at each other. Mira nodded at her Fan and they turned and started to leave.
His lips retaking mine cut me off. I struggled, but he held me firm by the waist, deepening the kiss and trying to pry my mouth open. I let it open but bit his bottom lip as hard as I could. He hissed and pulled back, looking at me with accusatory eyes. He grabbed my chin and tilted my head to the side. He started kissing on my neck, moving behind my ear slowly. I couldn’t do anything past his grip on my side and chin.
I tried to explode the chains holding me, but my power wasn’t working. It wasn’t working! My defenses were all on the ground. The reality sunk into my core as he bit my earlobe, this time I could do nothing. I couldn’t trick him. I couldn’t blow him up. I couldn’t fight back.
For some reason, my thoughts turned to Dirg. He had only just made sure he couldn’t force me to do anything, yet here I was, being forced. I decided to imagine Fan was he, but there was something inherently wrong with this. Dirg wouldn’t do this. Dirg followed Jesus and would do this right. Fan’s hands started to creep up my shirt, and I shivered at his touch. If what they said about Jesus was true, he could help me. But I wasn’t his follower.
I sighed. He probably didn’t care anyway.
Then, an epiphany came. If Jesus did care, if he loved me as much as they said, enough to die for me, he would get me out of this. But I remembered the teacher saying something about having to ask. I silently looked to the sky and told him that if he would get me out of this, I would believe. Fan stroked my side and stopped kissing my jaw, letting go of my chin and pressing his face into my neck. I tried to growl, but it came out as more of a whimper. His hand went to the edge of my bra and stopped there, quivering slightly. I tried to control my rising panic but was failing as I began to hyperventilate.
“You know what I have to do, Sunshine.”
I shivered yet managed to speak without my voice quivering. “My name is Lucille.”
I felt him grin on my neck. I tried to dig my chin into his head, but it didn’t seem to affect him. His hot breath poured over my throat and down my shirt, and I had to suppress another shiver.
“I know. Let me see your wings.” He kissed my throat.
I gulped. “Why?”
His hand twitched by my bra, and he nuzzled his nose into my throat. “I want to see them.”
I sighed and tensed as my back flared in pain. I grit my teeth and closed my eyes, and I was rewarded with Fan moving back from me, his nearly black eyes looking at my growing feathers. The pain subsided, and he took his hands off of my body to gently brush my feathers.
He wore only a loincloth and a rag that might have been construed as a vest that hid nothing of his lean yet muscular physique. His nearly coal black skin almost blended into the backdrop of black walls, and his pitch black hair hung down in dreadlocks over his shoulders. I have never seen anyone so dark before or since. His dark brown eyes met mine as he came back to in front of me. He didn’t come close, though, and I saw something in his eyes that gave me a sliver of hope
“The king had my mistress order me to rape you. They want me to take what Dirg wants most and ruin it.”
I met his gaze with as cold of one as I could. My shoulders were screaming and my ankles were throbbing. I was vulnerable, and we both knew it. He gently ran his knuckles down the side of my face.
“But I remember what it feels like to be raped.”
My eyes widened. “Did Mira...”
He nodded. I wrinkled my nose. “How does that even work?”
“You really don’t want to know. I don’t want to do this, Princess.”
He looked over his shoulder at the door and then back to me. “What other option do I have?” he hissed in annoyance as he looked me over. “What’s your power?”
“I create explosive marbles.”
He glared at his hand and a marble appeared and then exploded in light. He grunted and his eyes lit up in either amazement or an idea.
“Put your wings back in.” He ordered as he came within inches of me again.
I flapped, trying to hit him, but he was too close to me for me to hit. “Why should I do anything you say?”
He grabbed both sides of my face and ran his thumbs along my lips. “Because I think I can get us out of here if you play along.”
“Play along to what?”
“My escape plan, Sugarlips.”
He couldn’t decide on a nickname, could he? “Which entails, what exactly?”
He scowled at me in annoyance. “It entails me not raping you and us getting free. Unless you prefer the first option?”
“Okay then, bring in your wings and do as I say. Understood?”
I glared at him and tensed as I brought in my wings. “Understood.”
Fan gave me a quick peck on the lips before he reached up and exploded the cuffs on my wrists. He caught me as the only thing still holding me off of the ground were the shackles on my ankles. My shoulders were screaming less now, and I grabbed onto his to steady myself. He dropped to a knee, dropping me as well, and quickly exploded both ankle shackles. I rolled off of him and landed on my back on the ground with a loud thump. He offered me a hand up, but I stood without it and stretched out my soar shoulders.
“What’s the plan?” I asked.
He went over to a little pile of clothes in the corner and picked them up. “I was supposed to put these on you when I was done, to turn you into a toy as everyone thinks you should be. I need you to put them on.”
I took them from him and inspected the strapless bra and thong. “This is...revolting.”
He rolled his eyes and gestured to his own “attire.”
“So, why am I-”
“Stop questioning me and just put them on!” he snapped.
I glared at him. “Maybe if you turn around!”
He again rolled his eyes and turned his back to me. I quickly changed into the worst outfit of my entire life, showing way more skin than I was comfortable with.
“Are you done yet?”
I purposefully wasn’t telling him because I felt naked, even with the clothes on. “Yeah...”
He turned around and seemed to scour my body with his eyes. I looked down and hugged myself. He approached and forced my arms to my sides. I wasn’t fighting back because he said he was doing this to get us out, but it was still highly uncomfortable.
“For this to work, I need you to act like a slut. Hold your head high and flaunt your body like you did at the dance off.”
“So we are going to be two toys walking down the hall together?”
He grinned and pat my cheek. “Something like that, Sugarlips. Just follow my lead and throw your sexy all into it, or we will get caught and punished.”
I nodded and told myself this would be over soon. He grabbed my hand and started walking purposefully out. I hurried behind him and realized something. Somehow, some way, I was getting out of this, and not by my own power, either. Jesus really did love me.
I took advantage of the twins barging in to jump forward at my father, who was still too surprised to lift his sword to protect himself. Kindness plunged into his chest exactly where I planned for it to and passed through all the way to the hilt. I glared into King Zinx’s scared eyes as the rest of the room faded into the background. I grabbed his left hand and took the ring off, simultaneously dropping my own on the ground. That moment suspended in time indefinitely as I felt something I hadn’t expected flood through me. It wasn’t remorse, as I had expected. No, it was rage. He took Sunshine and probably had something planned to hurt her, and here I was, sparing his life.
All I had to do to change that was move the sword but an inch within his chest and nick a lung or an inch the other way and sever his heart from his arteries. His life was in my hands, and I could have taken it so easily.
I broke the trance between us and spun back, pulling Kindness out at exactly the same angle I had plunged it in. Blood flew across King Amora’s office, and King Zinx collapsed to his knees and then to the ground. I slipped the king’s ring onto my finger and ran out the door, ignoring Hinak’s yell, King Amora’s look of shock, and the twins trying to stop me. I blew right through them and took off as soon as I was in the hall. Another pair of wings took flight behind me, but I would not be caught. Sunshine needed me, I knew.
While my actions seemed erratic, I did have a plan. King Zinx wanted my ring, so I gave it to him, but the only way to get his was to steal it. I could have just killed him, but I had yet to tell him of Jesus, and I wanted to do that first, but I wasn’t supposed to talk. I had already messed that up, but I wouldn’t again. The only way to prevent a war was to give them common ground, so they would now both be hunting me down because the lightsies wouldn’t understand our politics and the darkies would call me a failure for not actually killing the king. No big deal. I was going to find my Sunshine.
I heard a twin yell at me to stop, but I went faster, exploding out of the hall and into the air. Seeing a prince chasing me, several lightsies joined the chase, but I avoided them and burst out of the land of eternal light and into the fading light of day. I wrapped my own light around me to keep the harmful light from slowing me down, and sped towards Hell since King Zinx said she was near that area.
A twin voice sounded as clear as if he was right next to me. Dirg, what in the heck are you doing!?
I thought about saving Sunshine.
By killing your father?
I examined in my mind the exact placement of my thrust in his chest, where it would not do much permanent damage.
You stole his ring. The thought was accusatory.
I didn’t slow down and grumbled about how he wouldn’t understand. Soon, those with high-speed wings had caught up to me and flanked me. I went on nonetheless, and watched them out of the corners of my eyes. One even managed to pull in front of me. Kindness was still in my hand, so I grew light around it so that the dripping blood would become more prominent. Hell was a good few hours away, and I could not afford to be delayed. Every minute was another minute Sunshine was in danger. Sorry, Lucille was in danger.
Stop or we will force you, the twin warned in my head.
I grinned maniacally and spoke in my thoughts as best I could. I’d like to see you try.
If I had said that to a darky, he would have taken the challenge and come at me as hard as he could. This lightsy prince seemed to understand the confidence behind my words and the fact that I would only stop if they killed me. They all slowed and left me until it was only me and one other wing beat behind me.
I won’t stop you, but I’m coming with you.
I sheathed Kindness and flew as fast as I could sustain for a long period of time. I could only pray Sunshine/Lucy was okay.
Apparently, darkies completely ignore people who are making out. Whenever we heard footsteps, Fan pushed me against a wall and made out with me. No one bothered us. I couldn’t see them past his face on mine, but that meant they couldn’t see me. I don’t know how they missed our non-darky skin colors, though. By the time we were above ground from within a vast network of tunnels, I felt defiled. It was the price for not feeling any more disgusting, and I had to satisfy myself with that.
Once we were out in the light of the setting sun, Fan took my hands and spun me around, grinning from ear to ear. “Summon those pretty wings and we will be gone!”
I blushed and stepped away from him. “Uh, you want me to fly?”
He frowned, sensing the fear in my voice. “You can’t fly?”
“Uh... Well- um...”
He cussed and spun around. “We might as well start running, then. Come on.”
He took off at a mild jog, and I hurried to keep up, feeling dirty running in these non-clothes.
He didn’t respond, so we ran. I didn’t know where we were running or even which way we were going, so I had to trust him. The sun was leaving and the murky gray started hiding things. I didn’t see a log on the ground and ended up face planting in the dirt. I heard Fan groan and stop, but I couldn’t see. I flinched away when he grabbed my arm to lift me up.
“We can’t afford to stop,” he said gruffly.
“I can’t see,” I admitted.
He groaned. “You’re just making this harder and harder, aren’t you?”
I sighed. “I can’t help it!”
“What good are you as a skyrunner if you can’t fly?”
I flinched bodily away, wrenching my arm from his grasp. I clammed up and looked down in defeat. He sighed.
“Look, I’m sorry. That wasn’t right of me to say. Why can’t you fly?”
I shrugged and blinked, trying to focus in the gray.
“We should hide for the night, since if they start looking for us, they will look for us in the dark.”
I nodded in agreement.
“Sit, and I will look around for a good place.”
I bit my lip and sat, putting my head in my hands. His footsteps got further away until I was finally left alone with my thoughts. I told Jesus that if he got me out of that situation, I would believe it when they said he loved me. I would believe in him. I was still alone with a man I barely knew, but he had seemed completely unwilling to push my boundaries beyond making out and getting a little handsy with my stomach, but he wasn’t going to rape me. That was what I had asked for, and miraculously, Jesus delivered.
“Okay, Jesus,” I said. “I believe you. I don’t understand why you would love me, the pathetic half-breed that can’t fly, but you delivered me. I can’t deny that. I believe that you died for me and want what is best for me, and I commit my life to you, for better or worse. You are my master now.”
In my head, I heard Dirg’s question. Who do you belong to? For a long time I had not known. The question just made me empty inside. Now, I had an answer. I belonged to Jesus. I needed to learn more about what that meant.
I saw Fan approach, a dark blob in the murky gray that was slowly darkening.
“Did you say something, Sugarlips?”
I tilted my head. “I was praying.”
He knelt in front of me, his form now clear. “Can you see?”
“Half way, yes.”
He offered me a hand, so I took it. He led me by the hand through a thick grove of trees and a thorn bush that pricked at my exposed skin. Once on the other side, it was dark enough that I could see a small clearing in the dense bushes covered in so many limbs that we were hidden from the sky and the rest of the forest.
“How did you find this?” I asked.
“Oh, there are always little clearings inside bushes. I just had to find one big enough for two.”
He sprawled out, taking up most of the open space on the ground. He pat the remainder of the space beside him.
“Come on, girl. I won’t hurt you.”
I did not comment and lay down next to him on the ground. He was sweaty because of our run in the heat, and the odiferous stench of BO quickly took over the clearing. I lay on my side with my back to him but didn’t fall asleep immediately, though he was soon breathing deeply. A thought floated lazily into my mind. My wings were now white and gold. For some reason, the thought made me smile. Finally, Dirg and I had something in common.
I wrapped light around the twin behind me when twilight struck and let myself stay in the darkness. He mentally thanked me. Soon, I heard the distant screams from the gates of Hell and started looking for an outpost. Most darky outposts were underground, since that provided 24/7 darkness. The entrances weren’t that hard to find if you knew what to look for, but I didn’t want to alert the lightsy prince behind me to that fact, so I had to circle around a bit before I landed. I was in a hurry, but I couldn’t sacrifice the security of my kind for even Sunshine.
The twin landed next to me and looked around in confusion. “We are in the middle of nowhere.”
I glared at him, and thought about what I wanted him to do. He met my gaze and closed his eyes.
“Fine, fine. I don’t usually spy on thoughts, by the way.”
I grabbed his shoulders and spun him around before I revealed the entrance and pushed him in. I walked on without him, and he hurriedly caught up.
“May I have access to your mind?”
I nodded, not really caring if he read my mind or not. I burst into the command center, making those inside jump to defend themselves. I still had my light around the twin, so several reeled back in pain. I went straight to Fon and socked her in the chin. I would have punched her in the gut, but I didn’t want to hurt the child.
She reeled away and grabbed at her sword, and Mira, who had been next to her, drew hers. I sneered at them both and flourished the ring. Fon froze and Mira scowled.
“You killed Dad!?” Fon yelled.
I raised an eyebrow at that very stupid yet highly appropriate question.
“You little twit!”
I smirked and turned on my heel, stalking out. The other darkies either glared at the twin or stared open mouthed at me.
“Come back here, little brother!”
I ignored her and started opening doors; if they were locked I kicked them in. Fon followed me whilst Mira hurried elsewhere.
“Yo! Look at me when I’m angry with you!”
I smirked at her quoting our mother.
She snorted. “Fine, then. At least have the decency to explain your lover following you around.”
At that I did shoot a glare at her but continued my search for Lucy. The twin choked.
“Oh, don’t play coy. We all know about Dirg’s sexual orientation.”
So that was the new rumor going around. The twin must have read my mind.
“No! He is not homosexual, and we are not a couple! That is revolting!”
I barged in on a couple sleeping in each other’s arms. Neither was Sunshine, so I moved on. Before Fon could respond, we heard expletives being yelled. I could tell it was Mira, so I ran towards her.
She was in a black room with chains on the walls, holding the blue T-shirt and jeans Sunshine had been wearing since church and cussing a blue streak. She whirled to me and tried to hit me, but I easily sidestepped it and snatched the clothes from her. She continued trying to hit me and cussing, and I had no idea what she was mad about. I breathed in Lucy’s scent reminiscent of old books. She was most definitely here.
“Are you even listening to me, idiot!?” Mira screamed.
I shook my head and gently put Lucy’s clothes down, not breaking eye contact with Mira. I made sure my anger was as obvious as my wings, and she shifted slightly, realizing my mood.
“She took my toy. First she took you, and now she took my Fan!”
The twin behind me snorted, and she turned to him. “Why did you bring a Lightsy, your majesty?” she said sarcastically.
He sounded amused. “He didn’t bring me. I followed him. He’s the best chance at finding my sister. What happened here?”
I already knew. If Mira left her toy with Sunshine in this room with those chains, there was only one answer. Light began to swirl around me as I alternately glared at Mira and Fon. Fon saw the look in my eyes and swallowed audibly. Mira was yelling at me again, but I stole her gaze and her anger sizzled away to fear.
“It was your dad’s idea,” she blurted.
I asked nicely in my head if the twin would please tell them he wasn’t dead and spun on my heel to storm out. He caught up with me quickly as the girls shrieked.
“What’s your plan?” He asked.
What’s your name? I asked back
“Edward. That’s why we fight over the name Theodore. He has the light power.”
I nodded, finding that funny. Something had to be funny. Sunshine was alone with a toy. He stole her from me. I really had no idea how to find them, but once I did, he better pray I was in a good mood. If he so much as touched a hair on her head, he was dead.
A low voice awoke me. I realized that there was a heavy weight around my waist and a muscled chest pressed up against my bare back. My heartbeat accelerated quickly in fear and apprehension as I began to make explosives.
My power wasn’t working. There was a whimper, and it took me a bit to realize it didn’t come from me.
“I can’t, Mistress...” The voice muttered.
“Fan?” I asked quietly.
“No! Please! I couldn’t- no!” He whimpered and buried his head into the nape of my neck.
I repressed a shudder and realized he was dreaming. I tried to pry his arm from around me. “Fan! You’re dreaming! Wake up!” I yelled at him.
He moaned and tightened me harder into his chest. I kicked back at him, trying to get him to let stinking go of me. He finally snapped awake and all but jumped away from me. I stood and brushed myself off; I had to fix my “clothes” and try to at least cover myself a little more.
He groaned, staring wide eyed at the ceiling of interwoven branches. “She didn’t find us.”
“No, she didn’t. That was a dream, Fan.”
He looked at me with wide eyes. “You’re my mistress now.”
My eyes widened and I spoke in disbelief. “What!?”
He quickly got on his knees. “I escaped Mira. With you, so you are now my mistress.”
I shook my head. “No.
He tilted his head, his dreadlocks bunching up on one side of it. “Of course you are.”
“Of course I’m not!”
“Well, I am yours. Do with me as you will.”
“You saved me yesterday; why am I now the one with authority?”
He looked around nervously and traced his lips with one hand. “Because I- uh... Can’t. I’ve been her toy for three years. Three years, and the only days I wasn’t either sleeping with her or lent out to a friend I can count on my digits. I don’t know what to do with freedom or authority.”
I sighed. He was going through the same emotions I went through when Dirg left me. But he had me to retie his lostness. He had a new mistress.
I opened my mouth and closed it. What would I do with this? “Um... Okay. What is your real name?”
His eyes glinted. “Shawn Ackbar.”
“Well, Shawn...can I have my power back?”
He stood and seemed to watch me. “I need to kiss you.”
I glared at him. “Didn’t we do that enough yesterday?”
“Oh, come on. It’s just a kiss. What’s wrong with a kiss?”
I looked at my scars and traced them. What indeed? It just felt so...wrong? Like my personal space was being invaded or someone was looking too deeply into my soul.
“I’m not used to it,” was my lame reply.
He nodded. “Just this once, Sugarlips.”
I nodded and he wasted no time in giving me a quick peck on the lips. He backed up quickly, smiling.
“I only really have to touch you. The kiss was for fun.” He winked and my eyes widened. “So, what do we do, Mistress?”
I scowled. “First of all, my name is Lucy. Secondly, I don’t know. Let’s walk. And find some clothes.”
We wriggled our way out of the thorn bushes and started walking. I had no idea where we were, so I just chose a random direction.
“Do you know which way the Swiss Alps are?” I asked.
He shook his head. “We are in Asia, that’s about all I know.”
I sighed. “Okay. Here’s my ‘plan:’ first, we find a town and get some clothes. Second, we make our way to the Swiss Alps.”
“The land of eternal light and my father.”
“You have a father?”
He shrugged noncommittally, so I continued. “Three, we try not to get noticed by any darkies.”
“If you could fly, we could do this a whole ton faster.”
I stopped and glared at him. He seemed to withdraw into himself, so I sighed in frustration. “Let’s not bring up flying, Shawn.”
He nodded, and we continued on. I prayed silently to Jesus, my new Lord, for help, in whatever form he thought best for us.