Monday, March 10, 2014
The Grand Tour
Maureen darted blindly into the hallway, picked a direction, and ran. She’d tried to keep track of all the turns, but between the bar owner and the chorus “girl” (the jury was still out on her gender) she’d gotten fairly well turned around. No matter. There had to be a fire exit somewhere. Sooner or later she’d find it.
Pity she’d had to run out on the cutest guy she’d encountered in ages. However, she didn’t have any choice. No one in Talbot’s Peak was a traditional werewolf. They couldn’t help her. Eventually the shifters would remember she was both human and a hunter. Ewan had promised her she’d be safe, but c’mon, let’s be realistic here.
She heard his boots clomping somewhere behind her and frantically tried one of the many doors that lined the hall. It swung open easily. She ducked inside.
Right into a blood-chilling scream.
Another scream followed it, then another, before the screamers realized they had company and stopped. They stared at her. Maureen stared back.
They were … goats. Mountain goats, barnyard goats, hairy Angoras, and one out-of-place-looking llama. Each was mounted over the tail of the goat in front of them. They looked like they were joined in a conga line. Maureen peered more closely. No, that was not a conga line.
The llama broke ranks and shifted into a thirtyish naked man. “This isn’t what it looks like,” he said.
“The hell it’s not.” One of the screaming goats had morphed into a woman, pushing 40 hard with both hands. “Do you mind?” she said to Maureen. “We’ve got this room for another hour.”
“Sorry.” Face flaming, Maureen escaped into the hall again.
The next door she tried led into what looked like an elementary classroom. A naked man was bent over an antique desk, while a woman in a Catholic schoolgirl uniform two sizes too small spanked him with a ruler. The woman looked Maureen up and down. “You want the harem room,” she said. “End of the hall, turn left, third door on the right.”
“I’m looking for an exit.”
“In that case, make a right, and keep making rights until you get to the stairs.” She tilted her head as if listening, and grinned. “Better hurry. Sounds like he’s catching up.”
Now Maureen could also hear Ewan, rushing through the halls and yelling her name. Getting closer. She raced to the end of the hall and turned right. A Ewan-shaped shadow loomed across the wall, forcing Maureen to take refuge again in the first room that opened to her. She shut the door and only then saw where she was.
This room looked like a barn, with hay and saddles and tack scattered around. A nude, redheaded man sat on a milking stool with a seven-foot snake wrapped around him. The snake was engaged in swallowing the man’s dick. The reptile wore a pink wig.
Maureen shot into the hall. She slammed the door and leaned against it, with her hands clapped to her mouth to hold back a scream. Neither man nor snake had noticed her.
Then Ewan was beside her and prying her hands loose. She didn’t scream, but her gasps had a screamy quality. “In there,” she said. “A snake’s eating somebody!”
“Must be Jamie and Lamar, then. Swallowing and squeezing are what he does best. I guess it works for them. I prefer mammalian partners myself.”
“What is this place?” Maureen demanded, still in the screamy voice. With Ewan’s arms tightly around her and something that wasn’t his belt buckle poking her in the hip, the light finally dawned. “This is a sex club.”
“The Interspecies Pleasure Club,” Ewan said. “You and your pals missed out when you were here earlier. It might have changed your opinion about Talbot’s Peak. It’s a lot more fun than hunting shifters, I tell you what.”
“You’re holding me captive in a sex club! A salacious subterranean shapeshifter sex shop!”
“Betcha can’t say that five times fast.”
Maureen shoved at his chest, for all the good that did. “Let me go, you son of a bitch!”
“Hey, she can swear after all. Quiet down. You’re safe. It’s all consenting adults here. Nobody’s forced to do twisted stuff against their will. Not unless they pay for the room first.”
The shoves weren’t helping, so she quit. “Shapeshifters have a sex club?”
“It’s that or cruise bars. I like this better. Beats sniffing butts in some dive’s restroom. Not that I’ve ever done that. Or used any of these rooms. Too rich for my wallet. Everything I just said is hypothetical.”
He eased up on his grip. Maureen stayed where she was, pressed up against him. The shivers had finally set in, and she needed his solid body to keep her standing. On the other side of the door, the snake's "victim" started to yodel. This was joined by a loud, happy hiss.
Ewan steered her away from the door, to the right, toward the exit. “Don’t be upset you’re upset. This is usually too much for most humans. I guess you’ve got your own problems. Being the only girl in the group and all.”
Maureen snorted. “I wish. Those yutzes are barely one step up from living in their parents’ basements. Ted’s into food, Barry’s stoned half the time, Lowenstein’s a jerk, I think Pete’s gay, and Atcheson … ” The shivers kicked in again, even harder. “He’s crazy. Crazier than Cochrane. I always made sure I was never alone with him. Any one of them would have killed me if they’d known I have shifter blood.”
“You don’t have to worry about that here. Talbot’s Peak is a refuge for fullblooded shifters, halfbloods, quarterbloods, or anybody with only a couple of drops. We even take regular humans, but you have to be really nice. No assholes. We’ve got enough of those in the fullblood camp.” He smiled. Maureen felt her shivers diminish. “Nobody’s going to use you for a chew toy. I’m here to see that doesn’t happen.”
Maureen smiled back at him. “Your hand’s on my butt.”
“Yeah, I know. Security measure. I take my duties seriously. How about we have that dinner now? The kitchen’s right up ahead.”