by Julie Behrens
It was night by the time the raven Parri made it to the witch’s keep, and she let herself in without rousing a soul. She was cold and wet from the rain, and thinking only of her soft bed. But there was a candle burning in her room, and she winced to see Elena awake and writing at the small desk.
“You’re getting in rather late,” her witch said. The calm in her voice was more worrying than anger.
Parri shook herself, black feathers fluffing from soaked to just bedraggled. “You knew where I was.”
Elena turned to her fully, dropping the quill. “Yes. The count is quite displeased that his son is now missing a finger.”
Parri made a dismissive noise. “Pah, the fool had it coming.”
“Did he really? He paid for the services of one of my inklings. This was your second chance. Do you really want to know what happens when you mess up the third time?”
Parri shifted from raven to woman, or at least the look of one, short and muscular, with black hair made spiky with rain and black skin and black eyes, clothed only in a simple black dress made of the same ink-magic she was made of herself. She flopped bodily onto the bed beside the desk and stretched like a cat. “Tell me, my witchly keeper.” She wanted Elena’s eyes on her and knew how to move to get it.
Elena made a complicated noise of frustration and reluctant arousal. She rose, and gripped Parri’s hair, pulling her head back to make her look at her, take it seriously. “This isn’t a game. This won’t have a punishment you will enjoy. You and the other inklings and shadow-kin must serve my purposes, dearest. Otherwise I can’t afford the magic it takes to sustain you. Do you really want to go back into the inkpot? Or maybe find yourself added to the coven cauldron, reduced to nothing more than expressionless magic potential?”
This was an empty threat and they both knew it. Parri leaned into the touch instead of fighting it, still all playful and coquettish. “You doubt me, mistress.”
“You were supposed to bed him. Instead you bit his finger off.”
“And the pleasure I could bring him would be of what value? You know men like him do not give a second thought to a woman once they’ve shot their sack off in them. There’s no power to be gained from him.”
“Ugh, you obscene thing. There’s the dizzying price of our services,” Elena growled, “which I will now have to return. And my reputation is at stake, which is the greater concern.” She let go of Parri’s hair, and looked to regret it when Parri continued to stretch this way and that on the bed, letting her dress ride up. “Don’t try to flirt your way out of this. You’re going to fall off the bed if you keep writhing like that.”
“I’m not,” Parri said, and grinned bright and sharp. “You’ll be eating your words in a few minutes, for information is worth more than a whore’s fee, isn’t it? Even one borne of witchly magic.”
“I don’t like that word, whore. You’re a courtesan.”
“I’m for sale.”
“So is everyone, the only difference is price. But what information do you bring? I’ll be the judge of its worth.”
Parri reached into the pocket of her dress and pulled out the finger she’d bitten off the count’s son. Elena yelped and jumped back, ready to be disgusted, but her eyes caught the (somewhat bloody) achingly familiar ring still on the finger. “Is that …”
“The ring of the murdered witch-lord, yes. It was foolish of him to wear it. Maybe he thought to flaunt it, taunt me, or maybe he didn’t know I would recognize it, or even forgot he was wearing it at all, I don’t know.” Her smile was all teeth, just this side of a snarl. “I noticed it when he slapped me.”
“Which would be reason enough to warrant biting him by itself,” Elena muttered. “He knew the rules, and magical rules like that do not bend for banals like him.” She waved a hand over the finger and cast a little cantrip to keep it from rotting.
“Will you use it to blackmail them, or to bring them to justice?”
She put the finger on the desk, not able to keep from making a face, and went to wash her hands in the basin in the corner. “I don’t know yet. I’ll have to think about it. Considering the angry missive I got about it, they haven’t realized the ring went missing along with the finger. It’s also possible the count’s son hasn’t told anyone that it’s missing yet.” She tilted her head. “Also possible that the count didn’t know his son had it. Or that the son didn’t know the significance of the ring, and came by it from a third party.”
“Stop thinking about it and come to bed, mistress. There’s nothing to act on at the moment, and haven’t I done good work this night?”
Elena turned and grinned. “Looking for a reward, pet?”
Elena joined Parri on the bed. “You can quit posing. I am won over. I am sorry for threatening you with oblivion.”
“I’d have gotten out of it.” Parri kissed her, giving a great big sigh like a work horse having its harness removed. “You love me.”
“I do love you,” Elena said against her mouth. “It’s a bit like loving myself, loving you, who are a part of my magic, and a part of my soul.”
“If that’s the case, maybe you feel like fucking yourself?” She made the little black dress disappear in a swirl of inky magic, leaving her bare between Elena and the bed.
“Right to the point, I see,” Elena teased, reaching between her legs. “And already wet for me.”
“You wouldn’t have me any other way.”
“Oh. Oh I have had you every way. And will do so again.”
Parri shivered and parted her legs. “Do demonstrate, mistress.”
Elena rose up on her knees to remove her gown (which was made of cloth, and not magic, and so had to be dispensed the usual way.) “Would you like my mouth on you?”
“Mmm. I was thinking something a bit more … penetrative.”
Elena breathed a moment’s magic spell to build herself a large, ink-black cock, the same familiar shade as Parro’s ink-black skin, ridged in the way she knew her inking liked. Parri grinned up at her, knowing she had pleased her mistress, if she was going to such trouble for her. She raised up her hips, asking and offering, and sighed with relieved pleasure as Elena pressed the cock into her, a little at a time.
“You like cocks, but not usually the men they are attached to,” Elena murmured as she worked inside her.
Parri giggled. “Yeah. Funny that. I only really want a cock if you’re attached to it.”
Elena made a noise and buried her face in Parri’s shoulder as she rocked against her.
“I threatened you. I’m sorry. I was angry.”
“You really want to have this discussion while you’re fucking me?”
Parri bit gently along her shoulder. “Oh fine. I forgive you, as I knew you would forgive me. You are quite making up for it. Oh,” Parri shivered as Elena sent a tremor of magic through her cock, “oh, I like that, please, again.” Parri smiled and moved with her mistress, pleased that Elena wanted to bring her off, was expending the magic to do so in a way she knew Parri especially liked.
Elena rocked their bodies against each other, ink-black skin next to sepia-brown on the pinkish ochre woolen blankets. Parri loved these moments more than hardly anything else, when Elena focused her attention on her, gazed down at her with unmatched intensity, touched her with possessive heat.
“Yours,” Parri gasped, feeling her climax building with each stroke. “I’m yours.”
“Mine,” Elena growled. She thrust hard at a long-practiced angle, an expert’s efficiency of movement, and soon had Elena arching her back and crying out as her pleasure crashed over her.
“Mmm. Yes. Thank you. You know my triggers so well.”
“Because I made them.” Elena kissed her temple tenderly. “Anything for my dangerous little bird.”
“May I please you in return?”
“Aren’t you tired?”
Parri wrapped arms around the witch’s waist and held her close. “Yes. No. Both and neither. What do you wish of me?”
Elena cupped her face. “I want to never doubt you again. I am sorry.”
“Be pretty unwise, never doubting me again. I do plenty to warrant the doubting.”
Elena kissed her softly, slow. “Be good for me, little bird.”
“I can only promise to try.”
“Good. When you wake, if you wake before me, you can pleasure me then.”
Parri smiled, no teeth this time. “As you wish, beloved.”
Julie Behrens is a fantasy, science fiction, and erotica writer. She lives near Dallas, Texas with her family and a great number of pets. Her major identity markers are queer, Jewish, progressive, neurodiverse, and short. She can be found on Twitter at @PenPaladin and at juliebehrens.com