Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price

Golem's Mistress, Magic's Price Cover

Freedom has a price for those willing to pay it.

In what seems a moment of luck, lonely Adina discovers and steals an ancient spell book. She learns how to conjure the golem, a charmed clay man compelled to obey his maker’s bidding. Adina believes he’ll be a remedy for cold, sleepless nights, and won’t demand anything from her in return.

It’s a struggle to keep the golem hidden from superstitious villagers and from the relentless village elder who owned the magic book and now seeks its thief. Her golem isn’t golem-like at all, asserting himself and demanding his share of control. Then Adina begins dreaming of her long-dead fiancé, calling to her from the Great Beyond, and the lines between the here and the hereafter are irrevocably blurred.

She’ll be forced to make impossible choices. A sacrifice is demanded. And all the while, the magic book seems to sleep.

Fate will render the final verdict in fire and ash.

This sample of Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price contains language and sexual situations that are suitable only for adults. Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price was previously published in serial form under the title Golem’s Revenge.

Read on to enjoy a free sample, then purchase your copy today.

Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price

Betrayed

Chapter 1

SHE’D DONE IT. SHE’D stolen the magic.

Adina slipped inside her cottage, clutching Elder Cardaw’s ancient book against her chest. After she bolted the door with the thick block of hardwood, she loosened her grip on the book. Safety.

She leaned against the door and smiled, sparing a moment to savor her success. Elder Cardaw wouldn’t miss the magical book until morning at the earliest. She had plenty of time to work her spell before returning the tome.

Because she lived alone, she had no worries about her work being interrupted. Loneliness would have its rewards on this night.

She’d made preparations earlier in the day, and now she rushed to the corner of the room, setting the book on the nearby table. After lighting a lamp, she opened the magical volume and carefully turned the fragile pages, her touch gentle but sure.

She sought the recipe. The code. The words for the calling. The naming. Soon, her loneliness would be a thing of the past, for this night anyway.

She left the book open at the right place, then moved to the corner and studied the clay statue she’d been shaping over the course of many weeks.

To mound, sculpt and form. To create a lover. Her dream lover.

The golem.

She hummed while she worked, her body pleasantly energized by the prospect of what awaited her. She splashed water on the clay, smoothing her hands over the cold, hard contours of muscular thighs. Its thighs. His thighs.

Adina dug her fingers into the clay, bringing out the finer details of abdomen and chest. Much of this artistry had already been completed, and perhaps she didn’t actually need to be working the clay again. But she enjoyed the shape and form of him, the one who would soon be hers.

She hadn’t yet chosen his name, and she would need it for the spell. Adina had rejected many names, and it turned out, in the end, the first name she’d considered was the one she couldn’t completely dismiss.

Eliam. The beautiful man. Her first and only love, long dead now, gone before his twenty-fifth year. Adina herself had only been twenty-two when Eliam died in the war.

Two years ago. It seemed a lifetime. She wetted her fingertips in the water bucket and traced the outer edge of the clay man’s lips. Beautiful.

She started, suddenly realizing that she’d sculpted Eliam’s lips on the statue. They were thick and wide, made for smiling, and kissing. She’d recreated her true love’s mouth without conscious thought. After a moment’s consideration, her mindless creation didn’t disturb her, but rather pleased her to have recreated her most tactile memory of her deceased fiancé.

Eliam had known how to use those thick lips, and the tongue hidden behind them. He was a masterful kisser, and Adina well-remembered the slick and powerful thrust of his tongue inside her mouth. She remembered it at night, when alone in her little bed. Always alone now.

She missed the feel of Eliam’s mouth on her body. They’d been young, in love, and desperately wanted one another, but they weren’t married yet. Adina would be expected to have an intact maidenhead upon her marriage to Eliam. It would be checked, and Eliam didn’t want his love shamed, no matter how archaic and pointless the tradition seemed to the young people.

He loved her, so he protected her. And they touched one another in all ways, with hands and limbs and lips and tongues, in all the sensitive and tender places. There was great joy in that, and waiting for actual intercourse became the right kind of tease.

Then Eliam died, and she’d wanted no other man to touch her since.

She inserted her finger into the golem’s mouth and smoothed an uneven spot on the side of its tongue before running a final check over its straight teeth. Perfect. She worked the sharp cheekbones, the eyes, the thick brow. Even the sculpted curls in its hair received a final pass, though it required that Adina stand on a stool to reach the top of its head.

When she’d finished the final touches, she rinsed her hands in the bucket of water and slowly circled the statue of clay. The brown, wet sheen of it shimmered in the lantern’s light. It glistened. He glistened, she reminded herself.

He was beautiful, this man made of clay and Adina’s need. Six and a half feet tall with tree-trunk thighs, muscled stomach, bulging arms and thick neck. His square jawline suited the shape of his face, the wide-set eyes, the straight-lined nose.

And the hair. She’d spent a great deal of time on the hair, defining the curls, working the strands nearest his face, making it slightly mussed.

Her clay man was beautiful, not in the same way Eliam had been beautiful, because that might have disturbed her. Only his mouth reminded her of Eliam.

Adina’s stomach fluttered, as did her heart. She pressed a hand to her chest, feeling the thrum of her excitement.

The golem was everything she hoped he’d be. She looked at his hips, at the juncture of his thighs, at the smooth, flat expanse of clay. She was satisfied with what was missing.

This man of clay, he’d give her what she needed, what she demanded, but there would be no mistakes, nothing would be done that couldn’t be undone. She’d made sure of it.

The clay man had no private parts. Nothing. He was smooth between his legs, like a doll.

And she liked that, the safety it allowed her, the security to make the experience as enjoyable as she dreamed it could be, repercussion-free.

Adina could have had a fling with any number of men in the village. She was regularly courted. But she turned the suitors away, knowing she couldn’t love them. If she couldn’t love them, she couldn’t trust them. If she couldn’t trust them, she couldn’t allow them to touch her.

She needed relief, however, and she’d spent countless nights considering her options, bringing herself to minor, unsatisfactory orgasms. The effort brought on more frustration than relief.

Then one evening, as if it were a thought sent to her from afar, she’d thought of the golem, and the stories her grandfather had told her as a child.

Was it true, and not just a fairy tale? Could one actually raise a man from inanimate matter, a man who would obey your every command? A servant gladly willing to serve his mistress without serving his own will, too?

In her grandfather’s stories, the golem always served a wizard in a non-sexual way. After Adina discovered Elder Cardaw’s magic book hidden away in his office, and found a spell for golems in its pages, she made a critical leap. She asked herself why a woman with magic couldn’t call a golem to life and use it in whatever way she desired?

Now here she was, after weeks of effort, and a great deal of luck, the pivotal moment awaited her. All the planning and research, the subsequent theft of the magic book, everything came down to this night and a few words left to be spoken. One word yet to be written.

She went to the table, her glance passing over the small piece of paper and stub of pencil, waiting on the tabletop like harbingers of good luck.

Carefully, she studied the critical page of the fragile book. The ancient words weren’t unknown to her, but the order, that was the key. And the meaning. She understood that, too. She memorized the words and took a deep breath.

Time to begin. She turned to the looming statue of the clay man.

After dipping her hands in the bucket of water, she stroked the statue, this time with no intention of remolding or changing him. No, the handling was for the spell.

She spoke the words, slowly, carefully, enunciating each syllable. No mistakes could be made. Her hands moved in the lamplight, darkening the brown clay in shadow as she passed.

“Uuahanga shelo breyli…” on it went. The lovely ancient words from a magical and mystical time. In her mind she imagined the golem coming to life, flexing its fingers and wriggling its toes. The words and the visualization. One without the other could never work.

Minutes ticked by as she lost herself in the vision, the incantation, in the sound of her own song and in the pleasure of caressing the statue’s slick form. Warmth bloomed between her legs, and she initially missed the precise moment when the statue itself began to grow warm under her palms. She’d been thinking of the real Eliam, the lost one, how it felt when he touched her, how it felt to touch him.

Heat radiated from the clay man, and when she recognized it for what it was, her hands flew from the surface of their own volition. That the spell was working was a wondrous and shocking revelation. Until that very moment, she hadn’t been certain she could perform the magic.

Adina refocused her attention, resumed the chanting and rushed over to the table where she grabbed up the pencil and paper. She returned to the golem and slapped the paper onto his solid chest.

“Uuahanga shelo breyli yamma r mons—Eliam,” she said.

She repeated the words while she wrote the name on the paper. E-l-i-a-m, in her strong, capable hand.

She chanted and folded the paper into a small, hard lump, then with a final resolution of faith, pushed the paper into the golem’s open mouth, under the tongue, deep into the clay.

She raised her voice for the final command. “Awaken, Eliam, servant of Adina, you are called to duty. Kneel to your mistress in all things.”

Her breath came in shallow bursts as she frantically searched the immobile figure for signs of life. “Awaken, servant, Eliam. Adina calls you.”

Did his eyes move? Adina trembled. Yes. A flicker. A flash of movement.

She reached out, stroked a finger down its strangely warm cheek. “Eliam. You are mine.”

THE FIRST WORDS HE remembered hearing were, “Eliam. Adina calls you.” And he felt a fire inside, a need to find this voice, whoever called to him, wanted him.

“Eliam. You are mine.”

Because she said it, he knew it was true. He belonged to her, would do anything she asked because … because he would. That’s all he knew.

He understood then that he could see, and blink, move his fingers, shift position. He saw that she stood before him, the wondrous being who called herself Adina.

The light from the lamp illuminated her from the side, a gentle wash of features and form. She seemed slight to Eliam, slender, fragile. Her black hair fell in waves to her waist, framing the delicate features of her face, the large blue eyes, small nose and plump pink lips.

He believed her to be the most beautiful creature in all the world, whatever the world was, he thought, with only a middling understanding.

Then she spoke again. “Show me you honor me, Eliam. Kneel and bow to your mistress.”

An overwhelming need to appease flaring up, he couldn’t disobey her. A small voice whispered inside, “Who is she to claim to be your mistress?”

Eliam ignored the voice and dropped to his knees.

Lovely Adina reached out a tiny hand and touched his head, sending a shock wave of sensations through his newly-awakened system. “Good, my servant. You are as you should be.”

Oh, how he wanted to please her, how he longed for her to tell him what she wanted. He leaned in her direction, wanting more words, another command.

But she stepped back, away from him. He shuffled forward, his knees slipping on the grassy-smelling rushes which covered the floor.

Adina frowned. “Stop, Eliam. Stay as you are.”

He immediately obeyed, relieved to have his orders.

She nodded. He’d done well. Good.

“How do you feel?” she asked.

Eliam opened his mouth, then shut it again, confused.

“I’m sorry,” she said. “You can’t speak, of course. I should have asked if you’re okay, if everything is okay … and if you’re happy to be here.”

He nodded briskly. Yes, he was happy and well. How could he be otherwise when she was nearby?

“Good. Are you happy to be here with me?”

He nodded again.

“And I’m happy you’re here, too. I’ve been lonely. It’s why I made you, in essence.”

He watched her mouth move as she spoke, fascinated by the sheen of her wet lips, the flashes of her white teeth. He raised a hand and touched his own mouth, and wondered if her lips felt hard like his.

“I’m sorry you can’t speak,” Adina said. “But that’s just how it is.”

He didn’t know why she said that. It didn’t matter, though, because in movements that left him stupefied, she began untying the strings on the front of her dress.

She unlaced herself, and Eliam watched in fascination as she pulled the fabric apart, pushed the dress over her shoulders, then down to the floor. She wore a white cotton shift, revealing plenty of creamy, silky skin on bare arms.

Eliam’s hands lay on his thick thighs, palms up. Seeing so much of his lovely mistress revealed, he flexed his fingers. He wanted something, but didn’t know what.

She picked up her dress, folded it neatly and set it aside. Next she removed her shoes and stockings, revealing more flesh. Had Eliam been able to speak, he might have made a sound then.

She pleased him by stepping up close and sinking to her own knees before him. He looked down on her with joy, at the almost shy way she returned his gaze.

“Eliam,” she said, her voice sending shivers up his spine, “I created you to service me. I have needs that I’d like you to fulfill. But I must know that you wish to serve me. I must trust you.”

He briefly wondered why she should worry about trusting him before losing the thought.

She continued. “I desire you. You’re beautiful in form and I want you, but that’s not enough on its own. You must understand what you owe me.”

She placed a hand on his chest, sending another explosion of tingling sensations through him. “I gave you life. You must never turn on me. You must obey me in all things. Be mine, and I’ll treat you well. We can treat one another well. It’s all I want and why I made you.”

Eliam thrilled to every word, and even if he weren’t fully comprehending everything, he wasn’t entirely lacking in understanding. The beautiful Adina wanted him, that much was clear. She had needs, and that, too, was clear.

He tried, with his eyes, to express his sincerity so she would understand what he couldn’t say. He tried to show that he wanted her, too, that he understood his existence was nothing without her.

She smiled. He smiled.

Something churned inside him.

They understood one another.

“Touch me,” she said. “Gently. Always gently. You’re very strong, Eliam, very powerful, so you must remember to be careful when you touch me.”

Eliam reached out his hand to her delicate shoulder. At first, he was so focused on not hurting her that he failed to notice an obvious difference. Then he realized it.

His hand was different from hers, and not just in size and strength.

Adina’s skin was pale pink, almost white, flushed with life force. The skin on Eliam’s hand was brown, too smooth, without lines, slick looking without a glow of life.

He turned his hand in front of his eyes. He looked down at his thighs for the first time, at his chest. He touched his leg then Adina’s arm. She was soft. He was hard.

He was not like Adina, in more ways than being able to speak or not.

“It’s as I told you,” Adina said. “I created you. You’re different. I’m of flesh and blood. You’re of clay and magic. That’s okay, because you are how I want you to be, and that’s all that matters.”

Her explanation soothed him. And besides, she said, “Touch me,” again, and that seemed a far better thing to do than worry over being made of clay and magic.

His fingertips grazed her shoulder and traced down her arms. She shivered and closed her eyes for an instant before opening them again and sighing. Encouraged, Eliam stroked her thighs, wondering at the small bumps which formed on her skin after his fingers trailed past. He ignored the faint beige smudge he left on her.

“Undress me, Eliam,” she said, her voice like a mesmerizing tune, not that he’d heard a tune before, but he understood the idea of it.

With great delicacy he pulled up the white shift, trying not to smudge the fabric with his brownness, but it was no use. Adina noticed his chagrin, shook her head.

“It’s nothing. It’s in the nature of what you are.”

He smiled in relief, because she made him happy, and because now that the shift was gone, he could see her breasts. He thought he could look at them forever, the shape and lift of them, the pink nipples and the round, puckered areolae.

He took the initiative and cupped one of her breasts. It was a relief when Adina moaned, pressed her hand against his. She wanted him to squeeze her, he understood. Ah yes, he could squeeze.

For some time he played with her, his huge fingers gently tugging on the nipples, curious about how much harder they might become. And Adina helped, too, telling him when she wanted something softer, or tighter, caresses instead of squeezes.

Then, wonder of wonders, she told him to put his mouth on her, to lick and suckle her flesh. He had believed nothing could feel better than touching her with his hands. He’d been wrong.

He leaned forward and bent to his work, knowing she was the most wondrous mistress alive. His tongue moved slick and fast, and he gloried in the sensation of her flesh-and-blood skin against his wet, clay mouth. Her very texture pleased him.

Again and again he laved her breasts, until they were as brown as he was, and if it weren’t for their softness, if he’d only been looking at them, he might have believed that part of her had turned to clay.

Adina’s head fell back and she moaned, her mouth slack and wet lips loose, glistening in the lamplight. Her own tiny hands cupped her breasts, offering herself to him, slipping in the wet clay and leaving tracks.

He gaped at her, and wanted … something, wanted more. But what that more might be, he had no way of knowing.

He bent his head, and returned to the thrill of obeying her commands.

Chapter 2

ADINA SHUDDERED WHEN THE golem closed his mouth over her breasts. She’d spent many nights imagining what this might be like, but the reality exceeded her fancies.

She hadn’t realized how warm he would be. His heat, combined with the slick smoothness of the clay, became a sensual experience unlike any she’d known.

And the big tongue that she’d sculpted so carefully, the way it worked over her, and the way his teeth nipped gently … sublime. His hands, too, gliding over her like warm silk, set her nerves afire, tingles running straight between her legs to deep inside her.

She wanted him, wanted more. And yet, it felt so good, being touched again, being desired.

Yes, that was something she hadn’t expected—seeing desire in a golem’s eyes. How could that be? And yet it was there. He wanted her, obviously enjoyed touching her, liked what he saw, what she asked him to do. She hadn’t reckoned on that, on what it would add to the moment.

She looked into Eliam’s eyes when he glanced up at her. Desire—hot, fiery desire. He didn’t speak, couldn’t speak, but he didn’t need to say anything. It was all there, in eyes she’d shaped herself. Impossible, yet it was so.

And it made all the difference.

She allowed herself to relax, to live the fantasy of the magical moment. “Ahh, yes,” she said, and moaned.

She took his hands, appreciating the hardness of them, the sheer size, and moved them down to her waist, to the tops of her thin underpants.

Her heart thudded in her chest as she shifted positions, leaned back on her elbows, bending her knees and brazenly spreading her legs. “Remove my underpants, Eliam. Take them off because you want to see what’s underneath them.”

Even though it seemed strange to say it out loud, it didn’t matter in the end, because Eliam did exactly as she said. He wanted to see the rest of her. His mighty hands closed around the flimsy fabric at her waist. He smiled at her and pulled.

He peeled back the fabric, and his movements quickened as he stared between her legs, at the part of her only one other man, a different Eliam, had ever seen.

Although it was ridiculous, she flushed. The golem looked like he was ready to move right in, and she wouldn’t have minded, except…

“Wait,” she said, holding up a hand. “I think you know what I want you to do.”

He nodded, ran a slick finger up her inner thigh.

“Good,” she said, “but there are rules. I’m a virgin and I have to stay that way, so that means you have to be careful with your fingers. You can’t enter me too far. You’ll feel my hymen. Think of it as a wall. Don’t push past it, don’t break it. Do you understand?”

She wasn’t sure, from his shaky nod, if he truly understood. “It’s beyond important that you obey me in this, Eliam. I made you to do my bidding.”

He nodded more assertively that time, then his gaze dropped back between her legs, at her most private self on display. Licking his chiseled lips, his brown, slick tongue passed over in a flash then disappeared again. Adina’s heart gave a mighty thud.

“Do to me there, what you did to my breasts,” she said.

And Eliam lowered his head.

The initial sensation of his fingers on her, his tongue there, too, nearly sent Adina bolt upright. Wet, slick, so very warm. He squeezed her plump flesh, ran a stiff tongue over her most sensitive parts.

She’d thought she’d climax right away, and she would have, if he’d spent any more time on one particular spot, but he began exploring, sampling for taste and texture.

His tongue slid inside her folds, darted deeper. She fell backward, then arched up when his fingers probed at her opening.

“Ahhh, Eliam,” she sighed, not caring that it wasn’t really Eliam down there. In many ways it felt like Eliam, and that was all that mattered.

She closed her eyes, reached out to stroke his hair. Warm, wet, slick, just like his hands and tongue. Not right. She yanked her hand back.

The man of clay trembled at her caress. So he liked to be touched. Interesting, but unimportant.

Her insides burned, her heart pounded and her breath grew shorter with each passing moment. She needed him. Now.

Little by little, his fingers slipped inside her. Oh, this was what she’d needed. When she’d formed those fingers, she’d thought of this, of where they would go. And they were large, well-shaped and wide by design.

She opened for him, and Adina gasped, gave him some direction about force and speed, depth and thrust.

And he was definitely thrusting now, but not entering her all the way, just as she’d requested. Even with his restraint, it was a powerful thrust, a taking that she hadn’t realized she wanted.

She panted when his tongue circled her clitoris. Eliam, so huge between her thighs, his warmth growing into true heat now, waves of which poured off of him onto her already heated self.

The pressure built inside her. There’d be no more putting it off. She told him what she needed, wanted.

He gave her everything she asked, and then some. And her muscles constricted and her hands tightened into fists at her side. She rose, her back a parabolic arch above the floor.

And she climaxed. Glorious, glorious release. The long-awaited, long-planned goal achieved, surpassed, in one moment of ecstasy. It flowed throughout her system. She cried out in release, in sensual victory.

Eliam worked her as if he’d been doing it for years rather than scant minutes. She cried out again and again. And then, finally, began the inevitable fall, the return to self, and the regular beat of aftershocks.

She told Eliam to touch her slowly now, to ease her way down from the heights. He was tender, soothing her, his cheeks hot against her inner thighs.

“That was wonderful, Eliam,” she told him, wanting him to understand how well he’d done so he’d know exactly what to do when it needed doing again. Which would be soon, she thought.

She lay on the floor in the rushes, eyes closed, enjoying the afterglow, surprised her need was already building anew.

A warm touch pressed against her mound. A passing nibble. A tug on a nipple and a hand on her stomach. It seemed he could be everywhere at once. She encouraged it with a sigh, a shudder and a moan.

Before long, the pressure built again, and the need for release grew stronger. Eliam slid a long finger inside her. She sensed him pushing against her hymen, testing its resiliency. She might have worried over it more, had it not been so impossibly delicious.

And then his mouth closed over her again, and she wondered at the glory of those thick lips surrounding her, hard though they may be. The pulse of his tongue against her matched the beat of her heart.

She stiffened all over, arched up again, and when she shattered, she cried out. “Yes. Eliam. Eliam. I … I…”

She’d almost said, “I love you,” but stopped in time. The climax was intense and thrilling, and in a matter of another few minutes, the clay man began working her body again.

Adina told him no more. She didn’t think she was ready for it again so soon.

But the golem apparently thought differently. He looked at her with desperate eyes, pushed his fingers back inside her and stroked her body. He wanted more. He wasn’t finished yet. He still desired her.

Seeing his desire rekindled her passion, and so she relented, giving him his way. And this time, when she climaxed, there was some pain to it, from an unexpected source.

Eliam had grown so hot that he came perilously close to burning her on contact. The heat dried the surface of his clay body in spots, making his touch less silky, more hard-edged, no longer slick.

When she came down from her orgasm, she called him off, told him to rub some water from the bucket on himself. He did as she asked, but afterward, he returned immediately to stroking her.

“Stop, Eliam,” she said, her tone firm. “It’s enough for now.”

He frowned, shook his head, appeared annoyed and confused. He pushed his fingers inside her.

Adina scooted backward a few inches. “Stop. I said I’ve had enough. No more.”

He did stop then, and sat up on his haunches. Still frowning, he thumped his chest, once, twice, three times.

She shook her head. “I don’t know what you mean.”

His hand closed into a fist and he thumped his chest again, then made an outward motion of frustration. He looked between her legs, then back up at her.

“I don’t understand,” she said. “You’re frustrated. I see that, but I don’t know why.”

He hit his chest again.

“You’re saying, what about you? That you need something more?”

He nodded ferociously.

“But I told you, I’m done now. I don’t want any more.”

He lowered his head, staring at his lap, perhaps thinking.

It was a strange turn of events for Adina. Eliam shouldn’t be thinking much of anything. He was a golem. This early in his existence, he should simply be doing what she told him to do and nothing more.

He touched himself between his legs, his hand sliding over the flat plane. He looked up at her, glowered.

She bristled. “Eliam, if you’re saying what I think you’re saying, it’s inappropriate and disobedient. You’re never to be disobedient.”

He thumped himself between the legs now, harder, in that empty spot. He gave her an accusatory glare.

“You want more, I get it,” she said. “But you can’t do more, and not just because I’m finished. You can’t do more because you don’t have the parts for it.”

He reeled backward, as if her saying the words helped him put all of the confusing pieces together in a new, meaningful way.

“It’s okay,” she said, alarmed at his change. “It’s how I made you, how you’re supposed to be. I don’t know why you think you need more. Forget it. You don’t have certain parts, and that’s all there is to it.”

His surprise began to morph into something else. His brows lowered and he gave her a hard look.

Adina sighed. She’d been feeling so contented, fulfilled, and everything had been going perfectly … until the golem decided to get upset about not having private parts.

Prior to creating the clay man, Adina had done her homework, and she knew from the stories that golems had a nasty habit, eventually, of rising up against their creators. She’d made what she thought was a smart decision, and chose to unsex her sexual plaything. And now, his attitude was proving how smart that decision was.

All she wanted to do was drift off in a short catnap before cleaning herself up and eating, but now she’d have to take action instead. Her fancy of keeping Eliam around for a second round before bedtime became a regrettable impossibility.

She smiled at the golem, who was growing angrier. “I’m sorry you’re upset. I didn’t mean anything by it. I didn’t think about you needing those kinds of parts. I can’t have sex with you, not in that way, so I didn’t see the point.” Which was something of the truth, anyway.

Truth or no truth, her explanation didn’t placate Eliam. He shoved his fingers inside her and pressed against her barrier. She scrambled backward.

“Stop it! Stop it!”

He pushed harder.

“No! Anyway, breaking it won’t give you what you want.”

His expression said he didn’t much care about that. He was furious, and he wanted her to pay for what she’d left off of him.

Well, she was getting angry herself. She sat up and took his big wrist in both her hands, trying to pull him out of her. “No, Eliam!”

He pushed harder.

She swore, then said in desperation, “Okay, you win, I’ll make you some parts, but only if you promise not to use them on me, I mean, inside me. There are other things we can do to satisfy you.”

He lessened the pressure inside her.

“Good,” she said. “Good. Now take out your fingers so I can find some clay to finish you.”

He smiled then, and obeyed her, his mood changing so swiftly into relief and joy, that she almost felt guilty for what she was about to do.

Almost.

“Okay.” She stood up, brushed the rushes off her backside. “You stay like that and I’ll find some clay. Oh, wait. I forgot. I used it all up.”

She propped her hands on her hips and glanced around the room. “I’ll think of something, though. Don’t you worry.”

She pretended to consider the problem. “I know what to do! I’ll scoop some clay from inside you and use that to make your manly parts. Best thing to do is go in through your mouth. I’ll hollow some clay out of your cheeks, make your mouth deeper. Hey! I could give you a throat.”

She couldn’t have been more sunny and confident as she explained what she was going to do. Eliam believed her, his expression eager, eyes wide.

“Open your mouth now.” She leaned over him.

He instantly complied.

Adina wasted no time. She stuck her fingers in his mouth and felt beneath his tongue. She found what she thought was the right spot and dug into the clay. It was, indeed, the right spot. Her fingertip touched the edge of the small, folded-up piece of paper.

As soon as she had a good hold on the naming paper, she yanked it out of his mouth and leapt backward, her rear impacting with the edge of the table behind her.

Eliam should have wilted away immediately; that was how it was supposed to work. Instead, he studied her, perplexed.

Adina’s heart beat in quick time. She gulped. Wait, something began to change. The lines of his face started to blur, melting, perhaps.

Eliam looked down at his hands, and together they watched them fold in on themselves, the digits curling up and transforming into bulbous rounds.

Even in its rapidly changing state, it was easy to read Eliam’s expression. One after another, emotions passed over his shifting face.

Shock.

Disillusionment.

Pain.

Betrayal.

Anger.

Huge, vast, terrible anger. All directed at her.

But he melted rapidly now, dissolving into an increasingly shapeless mass on the floor. Soon, his face disappeared altogether and his amorphous head merged into the wide mound of what remained of his once fine form.

“I’m sorry,” she said. “But you gave me no choice.”

The mass undulated upward into an arcing lumpy wave, and in a mighty heave, lunged at Adina. She barely jumped aside in time to avoid the full force of impact.

The earthen blob thumped against the table instead, tumbling it over onto its side in a shocking crash, sending everything on the tabletop flying. Adina watched in horrified astonishment as Elder Cardaw’s magic book went sailing off across the room.

The book smashed into the far wall, fragile pages bursting from the spine like the seeds of a wind-blown dandelion. The cover and spine collapsed onto the floor, pages fluttering down after it in slow motion.

Adina slapped a hand over her open mouth.

Then she remembered the golem and peered at the mound on the floor. It didn’t move. It was only a pile of formless clay now, nothing left to remind her of the magical man it had been mere seconds before.

If she hadn’t already killed him, she’d do it again for what he did to the ancient book.

It took several long minutes to build the courage to investigate the damage. First, she righted the heavy wooden table and picked up the scattered items. She dropped the folded piece of paper with Eliam’s name onto the tabletop, cursing it even as she realized it was only a scrap of paper now.

She carefully picked up the pages of the magic book, and then the book itself. She took her time surveying the damage, debating whether she should kill herself now or wait for Elder Cardaw to do it for her.

But she was lucky, after all. Only a few pages sustained damage, and that was minor and on the corners. In general, the book held up well in spite of the terrible impact. She’d need to glue the loose pages into the spine, and she was confident she could do so without the repair being obvious. Or, at least, not obvious until she was far away and no one could know she’d ever been near it.

She scrubbed the dried clay off her body, and after a short break to dress and eat some bread and cheese, she worked on the book until late. When she finished, she pushed her chair from the table, stretched and sighed.

She tried to recall how gloriously Eliam made her climax again and again, tried to remember it without also remembering how he’d turned on her. He didn’t obey her, and might have done who knew what if she hadn’t stopped him.

She shivered. No orgasm in the world was worth taking such a risk again.

Adina left the book sitting open on the table, the freshly glued pages standing up and fanned out, in the process of drying, hopefully, well before dawn.

She lay on her bed to doze for a few hours before she’d have to get up and sneak the magic book back into the secret compartment in Elder Cardaw’s office.

She shouldn’t have messed with magic. Never again, she chided herself.

Never.

THERE WAS SCANT SOUND in the room while the woman slept, her breath a regular pattern of whispery inhalations and exhalations. The cottage smelled of the grassy tang from the floor rushes, the ghost odors of meals eaten long ago, and the earthy, mineral scent rising from the hulking mound of clay near the wooden table.

The lamp had been turned low before the woman lay down, and its steady flame cast only dim illumination. Everything seemed half-lit and half in shadow. A tranquil, peaceful scene.

And yet, while one sleeps, one can’t know what might occur, what forces could be at play, waiting for a certain moment, a particular situation in which to enact a secret scheme.

Or perhaps it was simply blind luck. Or bad luck, with no agenda.

Either way, the gentle scene of a young woman asleep on her bed was soon to change. All because of one page of paper.

The magic book lay open on the tabletop, its pages standing straight upright from the recent application of glue. It didn’t occur to Adina that the glue might already be nearly completely dry, though she’d only been asleep a half hour.

The base of the pages had puckered from the wetness of the glue, and as it dried, the paper dried along with it, rumpling and forming a wave pattern near the book’s spine.

This pattern weakened the glue’s hold, which unknown to Adina, was not a particularly strong batch because it had been heavily watered down by the shopkeeper who sold it.

The drier the paper and the glue became, the more each page pulled away from the page before it. One by one, the seals failed.

A small shift of a page then, the slightest movement which would have been missed by anyone not closely studying the scene. Then the tremor of another page. And another.

Soon there came a larger shift as one page broke free and slid against the one beside it, putting more pressure on what was rapidly becoming a collapsing house of cards.

When the first page broke free of the book, the one nearest the outer edge, it slid gracefully down the flat pages of the open book. Then a second page followed, traveling further off the book, nearly touching the tabletop.

Soon another slid down and another, until a gentle wafting lifted the edges of the pages which had fallen earlier and nudged them further onto the tabletop. They slid silently across the smooth surface, drifting toward the edge.

Drifting toward a tiny, feather-light, folded piece of paper which perched on the edge of the table. A tiny piece of paper with one word written on it.

Another page fell from the spine, and the resulting ripple fluttered outward, scooting the lead page forward one final, critical iota.

A soundless bump. A silent impact of improbable consequence.

The folded scrap of paper shifted to the edge of the table, teetered…

Then tumbled over the edge, falling toward the floor.

But it didn’t hit the floor; it landed on the pile of clay.

As if the paper were heated steel and the earthen mound were snow, the scrap cut through the brown mass, sinking with extraordinary speed until it disappeared beneath the surface, leaving no trace behind of its passing.

Oblivious to fate, the sleeping woman breathed gently.

The lamp cast its soft glow on the clay mass, and it was no trick of the light when a lump began to separate itself, began to seethe, churn, and finally to mold itself into … something.

Chapter 3

WAKING WAS DIFFERENT THIS time. For one thing, the liar Adina hadn’t called him. For another, he had no form, or at least no usable form.

Nonetheless, Eliam was awake, and still Eliam. How that happened, precisely, didn’t concern him.

He worked his bodily substance with the force of his will and the ferocious drive to act. The clay bubbled and smoked, rose and fell and rose again, an eerie, seething dance in the shadowed light.

He called upon his memory of how it felt to be Eliam. He’d only seen the front of his torso, his appendages, hands and arms, legs and feet. A complete picture in his mind of what Eliam looked like didn’t exist, so he worked with what he did know, and guessed at the rest.

Slow minutes ticked by as he formed himself, piece by piece, part by part. And when the time came to shape his head and neck, he had an idea for an improvement.

He remembered what the liar Adina had said about making him a throat. It was a passage to deep parts inside him, into his chest and stomach, he understood, though he didn’t know how he understood it.

He hollowed out a throat, letting it lead to a number of small cavities. Then he dug inside his mouth, into the clay, found the folded piece of paper and pushed it down his throat. It passed down, into one of the lowest holes and settled into place. He sealed off the cavity.

There, he thought. Adina wouldn’t be able to steal his life again. Adina the liar.

A brighter heat flared up inside him. Eyes formed in his face so he could search for Her.

There she was, lying on the bed next to the far wall. She was beautiful in the gentle glow, and the sight of her made him dizzy with desire and yearning. But mostly, he desired to make her pay for her treachery.

He found the water bucket. It was nearly empty, so he took what little was left and massaged it over himself, badly needing the moisture to counteract some of the drying effect of the heat roiling inside him.

When he had himself in what he considered to be a decent form, he looked down at the blank space between his legs.

Something belonged in that area, and he knew what it was, another unexpected piece of knowledge which came from he didn’t know where.

The liar Adina called them manly parts.

He shifted the brown clay around his body, pushed some of it toward the blank spot. He smiled as he looked down and watched a cylindrical shape grow outward, saw round shapes form behind it.

How much would he need? He pushed more into what he understood it should be. It stood away from his body, round-tipped, hard and pointing upward.

Eliam wrapped his hand around his new part and shuddered in surprise. Pleasure. He stroked up the sides of the shaft. So that was what he’d been missing. He cupped and petted himself. Wonderful.

For a long minute, he played with himself, and for another long minute he eyed the sleeping woman who called herself his mistress.

This conniving Adina who tried to destroy him, clearly had nothing to do with why he stood now in this cottage stroking himself, or she wouldn’t be helplessly sleeping.

No, she’d have left him lifeless, a pile of inanimate earth, and she wouldn’t have cared. She got what she wanted from him, thought she could throw him aside. She’d made him believe that she was going to do the right thing and he had trusted her because she was Adina, the one who called him.

He squeezed himself harder and enjoyed it.

She’d lied to him. Tricked him. All because she was afraid of what should have been between his legs. What was now between those legs. And what would soon be between hers.

The lying, cheating creator. He would have roared, had he been able.

SHE’D BEEN DREAMING OF the real Eliam, the human being, dreaming he held her in his arms and placed gentle kisses across her shoulders and neck. He made little sucking sounds as he went along, a sexy sound at first, until it grew louder, more like a slurp. A slap. A squelch.

She woke up, opened her eyes to the dim room. The slurping sound wasn’t from her dream. And it wasn’t kisses. It was a sucking sound, suction of something wet and…

Her eyes widened and she bolted upright in bed. Her mouth fell open in shock and horror.

Not three feet away stood a monster, a hideous nightmare of a creature. Adrenaline flooded her system as she gaped at the sight.

The thing was brown, with pieces of dried grasses stuck haphazardly over the slick-looking surface of its, for lack of a better word, skin. It was tall, stretching over six feet, and its shape resembled that of a man’s, though resembled wasn’t exactly right—more like suggested the shape of a man, in that it stood on two stumps of thick legs which weren’t of identical shapes and widths. It had a torso, but it was lumpy and unformed, unnaturally connecting to hips and shoulders.

Similar to the legs, the arm-like appendages were of different sizes, one distinctly larger than the other. They bent into elbows in the unlikeliest positions. The hands were rounded, stumpy, misshapen.

All of this would have been plenty to send anyone running in fright. But the face, it was beyond repugnant.

Shaped incorrectly and bulging on the sides, the face was mashed flat with small bumps and fissures breaking the surface. One jagged gash just above the pitted jawline passed for a crude mouth. A lumpy mound above it might have been the nose, or what would never pass as a nose in any normal world. And the eyes. Oh, the eyes.

Terrible, terrible eyes. They were little more than rounded, deep indentations. Dark, soulless wells of emptiness. And they blinked. Once. At her. Her skin crawled.

Oh, and there was one other small detail, one which no one could possibly miss. Its terrible paw was wrapped around and slowly pumping a large, smooth-shafted phallus.

Her gorge rose in her throat, but she couldn’t look away. The monster stood there, glistening and brown, an incarnation of the bogeyman come to life, except he had a penis big enough and hard enough to … do what?

She looked back up to the creature’s eyes, into the empty depths, trying not to hear the squelching sounds of it pumping its member.

The beast stood there, blinking at her. She had no air in her lungs, having long since forgotten to breathe. This thing, this monster, was watching her.

Adina found her breath then, and screamed.

Her shriek was earsplitting in the small space and even the fiend retreated a small step backward. Adina gulped down more air and screamed again.

“Help! Help!”

The monster didn’t like that, she saw, though it didn’t actually matter if she called for help or not. The chances of someone hearing her were miniscule, considering her nearest neighbor was over a half mile away and no one would be on the road at that time of night.

Nonetheless, she screamed again, and scrambled into the corner of the bed, as if that extra foot of space between her and the creature could provide some safety.

The monster’s chest rose and fell, rose and fell, its gash of a mouth open wide, a black yawning hole.

And then it screamed.

It sounded nothing like her scream. It was a deep sound, and it had a sort of echoing, hollowness to it that made her think of a reed instrument. And it was so loud she covered her ears.

She stared at the thing, her mind refusing to work, not wanting to process what it might mean, what this thing was, shrieking in front of her.

When it stopped at last, the gruesome monster made a few softer sounds. She couldn’t make it out. It repeated the words. Then again. She realized it wasn’t saying individual words, but rather, syllables.

“Eeee,” It said. “Leeee. Ammm.”

No. Not possible, she told herself. It couldn’t be saying what she thought.

It thumped its chest and waved its phallus at her. “Eeee, Leeee, Ammm.”

No. Please no. Not that.

Not Eliam. It was impossible. She’d removed the naming paper herself and destroyed him. She hadn’t called him back and there was no way someone else could have come into her cottage and done it while she was sleeping.

This hideous monster was not Eliam. It was something else, a different golem, made by someone with the artistic talents of a drunken pig wrangler, the sensibilities of a deranged soul. And the creature shouldn’t be able to scream, or talk. Golems didn’t speak.

She shook her head. “Eliam is gone. Go away.”

The thing released its phallus and thumped its knotty chest. “Ee. Lee. Am. I am Ee Lee Am.”

Apparently, golems could, indeed, talk. It was impossible that this thing might be Eliam, and yet … she looked at the floor by the table. Where there should have been a pile of clay, there was only a damp spot, even the floor rushes were gone, revealing a patch of bare, packed earth.

“Eliam?” she whispered, returning her gaze to the monster, both terrified and fascinated.

The monster advanced on her, its eyes becoming more eye-like with each passing moment, developing a better shape, and an expression.

And that expression was anger. Dire, deep hatred.

“Stop, Eliam,” she said. “Remember who I am.”

He stopped, and looked even more ferocious. “You Ah Dee Nah. Lie Arrr. Liar.”

“That’s not what I meant,” she said, her voice weaker sounding than she wanted it to be. “I mean I’m your maker. I called you. You cannot—”

The gouge that was a mouth opened wide and he pointed at her. A big dark tongue waggled in the gaping hole. “Liar!”

“I didn’t want to do it. You left me no choice.”

“Payyy. You payyy. Now.”

She shuddered. What did he mean, she must pay? God, this thing was repulsive, a monstrous being who wanted to hurt her.

“No, Eliam. I’m sorry. I am. I shouldn’t have done what I did and it wasn’t right. I realize that now. I do. Don’t hurt me.”

Eliam towered over her and Adina contemplated jumping around him, to the side, making a dash for the door. But it was too late. His hand whipped out and grabbed the hem of her dress.

He yanked hard and the seams began to pull apart, even as the force impelled her forward, closer to the monster. He held her down on the mattress with his other hand, and yanked mightily on the garment. This time, the fabric itself gave way in places, and combined with the busted seams, was soon easily torn from her body. It hurt, this taking, this tearing, but Adina’s cries went unheeded.

The fresh underclothes she’d donned after her quick sponge bath were ripped off far more easily than the dress. It seemed little more than an instant passed and she was naked.

“Please, Eliam,” she said, breathy and terrified. “Please stop.”

But there was no stopping this beast, she knew it deep inside. Eliam would and could take what he wanted, and there was nothing she could do to stop him. He was too big, too powerful, too filled with rage.

“Was it that bad, Eliam?” she asked. “Was it so terrible that I wanted you to love me for a few hours?”

He shoved his fingers into her long hair, wrapping it tightly around the ugly stubs of hard, wet clay. “Nothing. Nothing for Eliam.”

“Touching me wasn’t nothing. Being with me, being called to life if only for a short while wasn’t nothing.”

He pulled, making her dig her fingertips into his thick wrists in a pointless attempt to alleviate the pressure.

“You know,” he said, the accusation obvious.

“I do, but I didn’t realize how important it would be to you. I’ll make it up to you. I can fix you. Surely you know that you, well, you did your best, but I can sculpt you into a beautiful, pleasing shape. And we can—”

“Liar! Trick-er!” He yanked hard and dragged her off the bed in one easy motion.

Her hip landed hard on the earthen floor and she bit her lip on impact. The golem ignored her cries of pain.

He moved toward the table and she scrambled to her feet, stumbling after him. Making a wide sweep with his free hand, he cleared off the tabletop, sending everything to the floor, including the magic book which was no longer of interest to the terrified Adina.

Eliam lifted her onto the table, pushed her down on her back, a slick fist squashed against her sternum.

He glared at her. “Pay. Now.”

She wasn’t sure what he wanted her to do, so she said nothing, just watched those dreadful indentions of eyes and the gaping slit of a mouth for any clue as to his next action, any knowledge which might help her escape.

The vengeful golem loomed over her, a massive, intimidating sight. Up close now, even in the low-level light, Adina could make out more details of the creature, every bump and crevice, every blade of grass, formerly the floor rushes, mashed into the clay in haphazard patterns, some pieces flat, some bristling outward.

His phallus wasn’t flawed with any floor detritus. It was shining and smooth, pristine and glistening wet, a silken surface polished into perfection by the monster’s craven paw.

And now that paw headed her way. Adina tried to scramble away, fresh panic giving her added strength, but not enough.

Eliam’s hand circled her ankle and Adina understood what was about to happen, and that she couldn’t stop it, not with force. She couldn’t defeat this enemy in any straightforward way.

She forced herself to stop yelling for help which would never come, to find the inner strength to think, to form a plan, to save herself from the inevitable.

Just as straightforward force wasn’t an option for her, neither was escape. She wouldn’t get far before he caught her, even if she could slip his hold.

“Wait,” she said. “Wait. I want to know what you’re going to do to me.”

“You know.”

“I don’t know. Not for sure. Are you going to kill me?”

He cocked his head to one side, a movement which accentuated his odd form. “You pay.”

“Right, but how?”

He gestured at her body, specifically between her thighs.

“You want to have sex?”

“Yes. Sex.”

She shivered at the depth of the sound of his agreement. She knew only one way to defeat something so huge and strong, and it couldn’t be physical. It had to be magical. The folded piece of paper. She needed to find it and remove it again.

It wouldn’t be so easy this time. The new Eliam kept his head well away from her and every time she reached toward him, he jerked his head backward. He was no fool, and what a pity that was.

There was only one way she could think of to have a chance at the paper, and that was to distract him enough to make it possible for her to sneak in a blow to his sort-of jaw, misshapen as it was.

She was, indeed, going to be forced to pay, she thought, and she could only hope the price wouldn’t break her.

“I understand,” she said, her voice tinny. “I suppose you’re right that I give that to you. After what happened. And it’s only right, Eliam, that you be gentle with me. It will be my first time.”

Some of the anger drained out of his fierce gaze. “Gentle.”

“That’s right. You’re very strong. You’ve already hurt me by dragging me onto the floor. Please, Eliam, take what you have to, but don’t hurt me. Please?”

He shook his head. “No hurt. Feel good.”

She doubted that she’d be feeling good anytime soon. But that didn’t matter. “Yes. It would be better if it felt good.”

His only response this time was a black, jagged smile. He lowered his head.

He went to work on her as he had done earlier in the night, back in that better time when he was beautiful and she wanted him to touch her. Eliam’s current assault so precisely mimicked his earlier efforts that had she closed her eyes, forgotten the abomination he’d become, she might have been in that earlier time again.

But this was a monster, an unknown. It was the same golem, yes, but it also wasn’t. He wasn’t what she wanted. No one could want a vengeful, angry supernatural being.

His mouth and hands worked over her, pulling and kissing, stroking and pinching. She gasped, in spite of herself, shocked that anything he could do might be pleasurable.

He squeezed her, slick and warm, hard and sure, then he licked her with a tongue that felt the same as before. So tender, as if he cared for her, as if she’d asked him to do it. Adina’s stomach fluttered, and a throb briefly pulsed between her thighs. Her thinking grew muddled.

She wasn’t sure when she began groaning, pushing up against him. It was probably around the time she closed her eyes, shutting off the monstrous view and surrendering to the unique sensations that only this crazed, magical man could give her.

When he moved between her legs, he broke the spell. “Pay. Now.”

She opened her eyes. He stood there, his phallus pointing at her. She panicked, her earlier resolve to play along evaporating. “No. I can’t. It’s too big. And you don’t understand. I have to save myself for—”

The golem made a grunting sound, then dropped down and with hands and tongue, practiced his perfect technique anew on her. Adina mumbled and ran her hands over her slick, clay-coated body.

She suspected that he wasn’t doing what he was doing in order to give her pleasure, at least not for the sake of her enjoyment. The golem wanted his revenge, and if he were pleasing her now, it was likely only for a nefarious result later. She didn’t know what it was, though.

She didn’t care about warnings right then, not when Eliam pushed a thick, knobbed finger inside her and twisting and turning, rubbing and probing against her inner walls, pushed upward where his warm and moist tongue caressed her.

He was distracted, like she wanted him, but his head was too far away, at the wrong angle for her to try to steal the naming paper. And in the meanwhile, he worked a different kind of magic on her.

It didn’t take long for her to near a climax. Before she reached it, Eliam pulled away and repeated his demand anew.

“Pay. Now.”

No, no. She closed her eyes and told herself to allow him to take her. Her maidenhead wasn’t worth her life. It had always been a tradition that made no sense to her. And yet. She didn’t want to let the golem have this from her. She couldn’t do it. Couldn’t say yes to it.

“There are other things I can do for you,” she said. “Let me do it. I’ll show you.”

He only lowered his head once more, began anew, stroking her, fondling her, taking her higher than she imagined she could go.

Then, again, he didn’t let her fall over the cliff, disallowed her climax. More than once.

Every time when she was ready, he stopped, or did something which broke the flow, destroyed the orgasm before it began. Then he looked at her and said those damnable words. “Pay. Now.”

No, no, again and again, no, she said. She couldn’t say yes to sex, not all the way. He took her up again. Pay now. No, no … her head thrashed from side to side.

And the process started over.

She pounded on the table with her fists, trying to release frustration. “I can’t have sex until…”

And she mentally flailed about for the completed thought, the end of the sentence. She couldn’t have sex until when?

Even as the golem drove her toward another dead-end street, she tried to remember why it was so important she remain a virgin.

Because it was expected that she should be pure on her wedding night? But did she, Adina, actually care about that, care what anyone thought? She wasn’t even sure she’d marry.

Her love, the real Eliam, had cared about her purity, didn’t want her shamed during the bride inspection ceremony. But he was dead. And Adina wouldn’t be marrying him.

She didn’t care about being shamed in front of some drooling elders and ancient crones, should that ever come to pass, and it likely never would.

Her shoulders lifted from the table and she grabbed the tough clay of the golem’s head, mashing his face against her, trying to force a completion. No good, he didn’t budge a millimeter.

She tried to remember why she wanted to destroy the golem, what her plan was to accomplish it.

She called him a foul name then, and when he teased her with his clever tongue, she raised her leg and ground her foot against what passed on his body as shoulders. He didn’t bother to push her away, her efforts were so useless.

“Pay now.”

She didn’t want to hear that, wanted instead to howl and demand he give her what she wanted, what she had to have, what she’d earned, dammit, and he was denying her.

Once more he tossed her into the heights, then didn’t let her crest the peak. He simply held her shy of the pinnacle, and repeated his demand.

She gasped for air when he stood up and displayed his mighty rod. Her insides tightened and released, tightened and released.

How could this creature do this to her? Make her want something she couldn’t have? Again and again, leave her nowhere to go with it and … do to her…

Exactly what she’d done to him.

Chapter 4

IT WAS A REVELATION, so simple, really. The golem’s revenge.

He’d never planned to rape her.

Adina should have seen it sooner, but then, there were other things she might have seen sooner. Like how she’d been saving her virginity for a dead man.

He wasn’t telling her to pay with her virginity. He was telling her that she was already paying, by not being allowed to complete her climax. Pay now. And that’s what she was doing.

She looked into the eyes of the monster, eyes which had reshaped themselves now into true eyes, as defined and beautiful as when she made them herself. The mouth and nose still weren’t exactly right, but they weren’t deformed and foul anymore.

In those eyes, she saw what she’d done. In her own stretched and strained core, she knew what she’d done was wrong.

Fear. She’d done it in fear.

And because she didn’t think a golem would have feelings.

And because she’d never accepted the real Eliam wasn’t coming back for her.

She sat up, reached for the golem’s hand, and pushed the solid clay into a better shape, more hand than paw, and she wrapped it around his mighty phallus and guided the tip against the folds between her legs.

She leaned back on her elbows, propped her feet on the edge of the table, though she knew what she was about to do wasn’t necessary, that he’d really only wanted retribution and acknowledgement.

But she wanted to go all the way, now. And she didn’t think he’d deny her.

Her heart fluttered and her insides quailed as she said the words. “Finish it. Maybe I owe it to you. I owe it to me. And maybe it’s just meant to be. But I want it, so finish it.”

The golem made one small, jerking movement, a single quick grunt of surprise and gratification. Then he slowly began to push himself inside her.

He didn’t hurry, and for that she was grateful. The rounded head of his shining phallus pushed against her, prodded her, until he slid inside, stretching her.

It hurt, yes, but it was wonderful, too. She stared at the wall, at the golem’s huge shadow towering over her prone and trembling shape. She didn’t want to watch the hulking beast take her. Nonetheless, she couldn’t stop watching.

She panted and tried to relax, to accept him as he slowly moved deeper inside her, although she feared he might kill her. Soon, she felt the rupture, the tear of her hymen. It was a sharp spike in the ever-present discomfort of the act, and a few tears slid down her cheeks, a solemn goodbye, not to her chastity, but to her first love.

She was only able to accept maybe three-fourths of the golem’s length before he bumped up against the end of her. He poked and pushed against that limit a few times, as if memorizing her shape and depth.

When he moved inside her, she pulled air deeply into her lungs and turned to look at him for reassurance. She found it there in his eyes, saw that although he was still angry at her, he wouldn’t destroy her. Somewhere in that monster was something more.

He desired her, that was certain. And now that he’d broken the path, he wanted to travel it again and again. So he did, over and over until it began to feel good for Adina, too, until she was breathing hard not from enduring pain, but from excitement.

This wasn’t at all how she imagined losing her virginity; she hadn’t expected this level of pleasure. But her lover was a magical creature, so normal rules couldn’t apply.

When he had enough of slow and easy, he increased the speed. Adina cried out. The more passionate the golem became, the hotter he became, physically, and this included his member. Her insides were aflame, nearly literally.

Waves of heat rolled off of him. They raised the temperature of the cottage, making sweat rise on Adina’s brow until it trickled down into her hairline.

Eliam didn’t appear to be concerned and continued moving inside her, grunting, especially when Adina made a sound which excited him.

The texture of the clay man soon changed, losing its sheen and turning from brown to a light shade of tan. Hairline cracks broke out over the surface of his body, creating mini-fissures which tracked their spidery way over every inch of him. The only exception was his phallus, kept moist by Adina herself.

He took her hard and fast, his temperature continuing to rise and his rough hands becoming uncomfortable on her hips. Everything wavered on the edge, on the verge of becoming something awful. Except it wasn’t.

It was exquisite, in fact, Eliam taking her. She thrashed and moaned and grabbed his over-heated, stone-like wrists. She lost herself in the crest rising inside her, in the hollow rush of his breathing, in her own passionate cries.

Hotter, ever hotter, and neither of them cared. Not even when the cracks on his surface widened and split, and tiny chunks of dried earth fell from his body, his arms and legs, crumbling hunks which rained down on the floor and Adina herself.

They ignored it. They were both close, so close. Adina let the pressure climb, knowing Eliam was near the end, same as she was.

Then she let it all go, released it, everything, all the loneliness, the worry and the fear, and she let it flow out with her climax, allowed the honest rush of bliss to flush out the regrets of lost years.

The patter of falling dried clay sounded in her ears. It peppered her face and chest, her closed eyelids. It felt like being touched by hundreds of tiny clay lovers at once.

Hot, inside her. And where his hands held her. So hot.

As she fell back to herself, she remembered what she still needed to do. And while she wasn’t even sure she wanted to do it anymore, she knew inside it was the right thing to do. The golem could not be controlled. No matter his usefulness as a lover, he must be stopped.

She opened her eyes, watching him. His body resembled the cracked and dried topsoil of a field during a drought, but it was beautiful too, entrancing. Deep, dark fissures marred him everywhere, the gaps opening and closing with his movements.

He thrust inside her as he neared his release, lowering his head, a cry building, that hollow scream again, gaining strength with his vigor.

There might never be a better time than that moment, she thought.

She sat up quickly, pulling back her right arm. Eliam never noticed.

She made a claw of her hand and struck a forceful blow forward, piercing the golem directly under his jaw. The impact sent her fingers inside his mouth, breaking off pieces of jaw and chin, miring in the hardening interior.

She gouged out a handful of clay and snatched it free from the golem’s head.

Eliam never stopped pumping inside her. When she mashed the stolen clay onto the tabletop and frantically sought the folded naming paper, Eliam only made an odd huffing sound.

There was no paper on the table.

Adina struck again, taking out the remainder of his jaw. The paper had to be in there somewhere.

Nothing but thrusting and huffing came from Eliam while she searched through the clay.

No paper.

It wasn’t there. Not where it was supposed to be.

He huffed repeatedly.

And she realized then that he was laughing at her. He knew what she was trying to do. Knew she would fail.

He laughed because the paper wasn’t where it was supposed to be.

Fury and fear filled her, and she wanted to hit him again, but he flicked her in the chest with his powerful fingers and sent her flat on her back again.

She noticed then that the cracks in his body were growing wider by the moment. It seemed the faster he moved inside her, the faster he split apart. He was close to finishing, she sensed. It couldn’t be long.

Then large chunks of clay began to break off him. Half of his hand thudded to the floor, losing its hold on Adina’s leg and shocking her into a gasp.

Eliam threw his head back and howled, his chest heaving, developing massive breaks. His other hand fractured at the wrist, falling off and clunking against the table. Eliam paid it no mind. He finally reached and soared away on his climax.

Stunned into silence, and long since past worrying over the failure of her plan, Adina watched the golem’s baked surface rupture further. The heat billowing off him was almost more than she could bear. It truly did seem a furnace burned within him. A forge, perhaps.

Even his phallus was drying now, and Adina’s personal moisture was unable to keep up with the speed of desiccation. He wasn’t moving as easily inside her as he had been.

Then Eliam’s right arm shattered in a loud burst, sending sharp shards soaring across the room, pattering against the walls.

“Eliam!” she cried. “Something’s wrong. You have to stop.”

Eliam only howled on.

“Stop, stop!” she tried again, and this time meaning it for them both. The friction of his movements inside her was racing beyond uncomfortable and heading to—

His left arm shattered in a pop, sending more pieces shooting outward. Adina covered her face with her hands to protect herself.

“Eliam! Eliam!” She peeked through her fingers.

He looked at her then, and in his dried, flaking eyes she saw his ecstasy, that he wasn’t aware of anything beyond it. He thrust inside her again.

“No, no,” again and again. But it was no use.

When he reached the peak of his orgasm, he pushed into her one last time, driving into her depths and up against her limit, then he stood there shaking and moaning, an armless, crumbling and cracked thing.

His expression was otherworldly, exalted. He pulled out from her and spoke, an airy rush of sound, his chest riddled with ruptures.

“A-dee-nah. Mine,” he croaked.

His eyes rolled up in his head.

Then he exploded into a million pieces.

Adina covered herself as best she could, fragments of earth striking her everywhere. It was like being hit with a gravel bomb, if there were such a thing. Some pieces were miniscule, others larger and stinging. An intense blast of heat accompanied the explosion, and particles of golem rattled around the cottage, it seemed, forever.

When the last of the creature came to rest, Adina sat up and gaped at the destruction. A nightmare of a mess. But that didn’t disturb her, not as much as something else.

What disturbed her most was that she didn’t know how to feel about what happened. Eliam. Exploded. Gone.

She glanced down at the floor near the table. Not seeing what she was looking for, she slid off the table, not minding the dirt and rubble which tumbled off her, nor that she was sweaty and filthy from the residue of the golem’s handling.

If you’d like to enjoy Adina and Eliam’s continuing adventure, purchase your copy of the complete novel today!

The novel Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price is approximately 400 print pages long and contains language and sexual situations that are suitable only for adults.

Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price was previously published in serial form under the title Golem’s Revenge.

 

3 thoughts on “Golem’s Mistress, Magic’s Price

  1. Ms. Stiles
    I just wanted to let you know I’ve read all your books and I enjoyed Golem’s Revenge the most. You never did the usual with with story. The golem never truly got what it wanted. Love didn’t conquer all for them. Although I was kinda hoping they would find their golem land. I hope you continue to write such interesting stories. It was nice to read something other than were, vampire, alien, and dragon romance.

    1. Hi Bridget!
      I’m so happy you enjoyed Golem! I really had a great time writing it. Well, when I wasn’t making myself sad for the Golem. 🙂
      I confess that it didn’t end up anywhere near what I expected when I first sat down to write it. The plot sort of evolved as I made my way through the story.

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