Not long before Mel considered turning off the game and heading down for dinner, his room started to vibrate. Instead, he simply made himself more comfortable on his futon, holding Brin in his arms, resting the controller on her supple breasts as she continued to lightly giggle and rub his legs all the while sneering at Penelope beside. The rumble from the controller made that burgeoning flesh jiggle so, bathed in blue light from the top of the controller and her runes, pulsing pink, faster, brighter with each vibration that delved into her magnificent mammaries. She was starting to claw at his legs, her moans slipping through as her control started to wane. Her hips grinded against, while the room was starting to become uncomfortably hot from the sheer heat she was putting off. She strained to keep her eyes open, but she did not break her sneer, did not break eye-contact with Penelope.
However, the door opened. Benjamin respected his grandson’s wishes and knocked, but asserted his position as guardian and dean by coming in anyway. He flicked the lights on, and, upon seeing Saliim still passed out in the left-hand corner, Brin, flushed and sweating in Mel’s lap, and Penelope ready to happen to stumble upon the aroused succubus after she was found on the ground, dead, tripped on forty-seven different knives, he somewhat regretted his decision. Just... just a touch. He was even more perturbed as the room rumbled with the sound of the wettest batch of horse excrement yet, seen plopping to the ground on the telly.
“Is this what you do when alone?” Benjamin inquired, covering his mouth, his cheeks greening as if he could see and smell the pile of dung as clear as day. “Do you happen to do any independent study, and not of the feces variety?”
“Sometimes,” Mel said, and closed the game. Brin whined as he stood, her blue and her pink robbed as she sat there, cross-legged. She had finally broken eye-contact with Penelope, looking to the ground as she moped. Penelope, though, seized the opportunity to loop herself onto Mel’s arm, standing before his grandfather. “Professor Torrid talk to you?”
“Iris, Dawn, and Betty, the Desolator of Dark Souls and the Beacon of Hope, came to see me and reported that, as they put it, you ‘accidentally transformed-’”
“No, it was accidentallied.”
“That’s what I said.”
“No. Accidentallied. Axe. Sea. Dent. All. Lead. Do you speak English?”
Benjamin shook his head, sighing, already so weary.
“Regardless, they reported that you didn’t do anything of the sort. In fact, they believed it was an outside source.”
“If that is the case, that means the whole situation with the gorgon-”
“And your induced amnesia, apparently... could all have been done by an outer, malicious force... Perhaps one that is forced to be with you and is looking to be free.”
Saliim groaned, grumbling as she picked herself off the floor, rubbing her head as she blinked and cleared the fog that had spread over her eyes. It almost instantly cleared when they laid on Benjamin, and the smoldering look he was giving her.
“What? What did I miss?” She said.
“You know,” Mel said, “when you put it like that, you may have a point. She was acting incredibly strange all day. Being... nice and shit.”
“She was being nice?” Benjamin repeated. “That is a rarity. In the time I have known her, she has been aloof, to put it kindly.”
“And not so kindly, you’re kind of a bitch,” Mel added.
Saliim scoffed, glaring, focusing on him if only to still her shaking.
“Just because I am not trying to suck up so I can suck you off doesn’t make me a bitch.”
“Right, right... but what was all that earlier?”
“I was trying to be nice... You were right, okay? I was being hostile. I was being a detriment. I was being a complete raving bitch looking to bite off somebody’s head instead of actually doing anything to make my life better here. I was being petty. I was being obstinate... You can stop me at any point, you know?”
“Why? It’s all true. Before you continue, though, can I go get a bottle of vodka and some shot glasses? This seems like the perfect way to get wasted.”
“Oh, fuck you!”
“And just like that, everything’s back to normal.” Mel sighed, wiping his hands, and turned to the futon, another day ending in triumph. Sadly, though, Penelope held true, and forced him to stand his ground before Benjamin. “You can go home now. I don’t do sleepovers, and there’s not anywhere near enough pillows or newspapers to eat.”
“This is serious, Mel,” Penelope said, squeezing his arm. “Somebody is targeting you.”
“Some...body once told me, the world was gonna roll me. I ain’t the sharpest tool in the sh-” Saliim hit him on the back of the head; he turned his head, looking at her. “Please, ma’am, may I have another fuckadoodle!”
“For once in your simple, yet unbelievably terrifying, mind, can you listen plainly?” She exclaimed, giving him another smack... Benjamin, Penelope, and Brin all gave her a dirty look, which she simply shrugged. “What? He asked, and I have a lot of pent-up frustration to work through.”
“Exactly! I’m helpful!”
“Like a punching bag.”
“Which is a great big bag of sand, and you know what else they say is like a bag of sand-”
“That movie was so wrong, but you are acting like a huge tit!” … Penelope. Penelope of all people said, hugging him tight. “Please... we need to take this seriously.”
“You know, you keep asking for me to be serious. You would think, after the first time, you would know better by now... Besides, we already know who it is.”
“We do?” All three said.
“Yeah. It’s Lucille Kahn. She did say she was going to make my life miserable; even did some blood magic voodoo shit.”
“She did?” Benjamin said. “Why wasn’t this brought to my attention?”
“Because it happened right before the gorgon entered the courtyard and was then promptly sent home,” Saliim grumbled. “You know, because you poured through your tomes all night and day, spent countless man hours, strained to find it for her... when she was only here for a day. Less than twenty-four hours, unlike SOME OTHERS who are SUFFERING.”
“What are you trying to say?”
Saliim scoffed, wheeling back a touch, her face locked between a smile and an emotion that could only be summed up as wanting to rip someone’s throat out.
“You are two of a kind! I swear to the Dark One, if I ever end up going home, I will personally see to it that we will march on the human world and make everyone our slaves all because of you two.”
“What! I haven’t done anything,” Mel exclaimed.
“And, with that kind of attitude, do you really think I would be prioritizing sending you home?” Benjamin said, and shook his head. “We have a lead, at least. I shall summon Lucille Kahn to my office first thing tomorrow morning. For now, I think it wise that you and Penelope stay apart. If she is holding as much a vendetta as you believe, then you shouldn’t risk her life.”
“N-no! I won’t stay away,” Penelope said, almost crushing herself against him. If she didn’t have those pesky bones, she would have become like a blanket, and would be just that much more suffocating. “If I do, she wins. We will both suffer.”
“We?” Mel said, trying to ease her off and towards Benjamin. But, more importantly, he was trying to press her to the door. “You heard the dean. We shouldn’t be seen together. It’s for your safety.”
“Damned be my safety! I’d rather be with you and die together than be alone.”
“I like the idea of not dying. Sounds painful.”
“But we would be together in that final moment, a true blaze of glory. Oh... hold me.”
She pushed into his arms, squeezing tighter than ever before, hard enough that he swore he could hear her bones starting to crack and ground themselves, readying for the great blanketing.
“Then again, we don’t know if she is only targeting you, Mel,” Benjamin added. “We don’t even really know it is her; if she approached before the gorgon entered the courtyard, then that means the gorgon was already in the Institute. Now, she could have summoned it before making her intentions known, but why take a step back? It is quite a regression from summoning a gorgon to what Iris called a me-me-”
“Never say it like that again.” Mel stated, flat as he could, but it couldn’t hide the bitterness from his tone. “It’s pronounced like mean.”
“He does have a point, though,” Saliim said. “Lucille doesn’t seem the type to deescalate. If she were trying to get at you, she would have done something far worse.”
“What could be worse than a gorgon?” Brin said.
“Birds,” Mel said without a moment of hesitation. He snapped his vision back to the window, eye twitching. “Fucking birds... Can’t trust them. Especially toucans... Toucans don’t have money... TOUCANS DON’T HAVE MONEY. OR TITS! YET A BIRD IS CALLED A TIT- AND BOOBIES! Fucking birds...”
“He has a point,” Saliim said after a moment, which snapped everybody’s attention to her. Even Mel- ESPECIALLY Mel.
“A Roc would be worse, or even one of the more virulent elemental phoenixes.”
“What about harpies?” Brin said, voice shaking, turned to a full exclamation as three of the feathery-armed beings flew through the window. “Master! Look out!”
“Eh?” He managed to say before he was swooped up by the three lovely brown-armed ladies. They quickly left as they arrived, hauling him into the starry sky... as well as the succubus and Penolope.
“No! They have the advantage!” Brin shrieked. “What are we going to do, Master!”
Mel didn’t hear her, though. Not because of the wind shrieking by his ears but because he was cheering the entire time.
He flailed his arms, his legs, but the harpies held firm. However, due to the three extra people that came along, two of them dangling like dead weights, they slowly lost altitude. It wasn’t long before they crashed into one of the towers that spotted the horizon, and the harpies panted and held their busty chests, barely covered with soft plumage, while Mel rolled forward. There was an archway, covered with soft, cream curtains, brushing, caressing him as he continued through. Penelope had let go during the tumble, leaving him alone.
In Nobody’s room.
She was on the bed, no cloth to be seen on her person playing with a handheld console. Her breasts were squished down to the red-covered queen, but her rump was clear to be seen, perfectly round. There were three sunspots on the right cheek, blushing a bit red as she looked at him, standing up.
“Well, hello to you too,” she said, closing her handheld. She grabbed a throw blanket beside and covered up, much to both his disdain and gratitude. He was already hunched over from taking a bad fall, but now he had multiple reasons. “It’s not often men come rolling into my room. So... should I scream or not?”
“Hold that thought,” Mel said, and lumbered back out to the landing. The harpies had caught their breath, rising into the air again with three quick beats of their wings, their golden talons reaching out for him. Mel waved his hand, and the air crackled. The harpies squawked only once before they thumped back down onto the stone, twitching, writhing as they crackled and smoked. He huffed, walking over to the left railing, all sides linked by that black iron, and helped Brin over. Nobody came out as he helped her stand, and looked between them all. “Would you like some tea? Your treat.”
“That sounds absolutely lovely,” she said, and went back in. Mel helped Penelope to her feet next, then carried the harpies into the room, one by one, setting them gently on the plush, violet carpet. For the most part, he didn’t want to pay attention to that room; the amount of ways he could have sullied every inch, and wanted to, would have only added that much more pressure on him.
Instead, he settled at the small table near the entry, against the wall, and made sure his robe was incredibly loose in the front. As she returned, though, seeing that her robes were just as loose, showing off less than she truly wanted, he had to resort to drastic measures and have Brin sit in his lap.
“Oh my,” she said, giggling as she bounced a little. “Looks like somebody’s happy.”
“Quiet, you,” he grumbled. Penelope took her place by his side, though it was begrudging, all three simply waiting for Nobody to brew the tea... Three... wasn’t there somebody else?”
“Help? Please? Mel! Brin?”
Mel could hear a voice on the wind, but it must have been his imagination. After all, it was always only Brin and Penelope... and nobody else. Except Nobody.