Write to Life: A place for me to vent about the industry, try and pass on a few useful tips to aspiring authors, and showcase poems dedicated to my muse...
Monday, January 11, 2016
Erotica - The Catbaby
(This was going to be a longer piece, but, you know.)
He had traveled for what seemed like ages, leaving himself far behind, on the other side of a vast tract of wasteland. In reality, it was about a month.
He had ridden until the beast could no longer be burdened. Ate it. Moved on. He walked until the sandals fell off of his feet, and his soles began to simmer and cook.
His skin reddened, bronzed, blackened, peeled until he lost even his physical identity. His hair got lighter, exposing red highlights, like a hidden aspect of his personality brought to the fore.
And his eyes. His eyes burned with a madness that could never again be contained.
No one believed the old tales. Even now, moments from the culmination of his odyssey, he was unsure himself. More likely still that he, too, was a fool. Though even if he was, he was the better for it. The journey was the reward.
Or perhaps the end was.
He winced slightly as he ascended the slope. Jagged bits of volcanic glass accented each step.
As he neared the crest, the clouds broke, and a wide ray of sunlight lit the caldera in a manner that was quite possibly divine in nature.
Curled up in her nest, was the catbaby.
He sucked in his breath as though he had been struck. In no way was he prepared for this. In fact, he had talked himself out of it halfway through.
Awestruck, he watched as she began to yawn and stretch.
“I know you're there,” she said to his amazement, never opening her eyes.
“...Didn't know catbabies could talk? I'm sure what you don't know about catbabies could fill volumes.”
He fumed. He hadn't considered that she could talk, but even if he had, he wouldn't have expected such a smart ass.
Her tail twitched, and she was upright in an instant. Before he could react, she had leapt over the crag and was rubbing her face on his leg.
“You found me,” she said. “Now what?”
“I beg your pardon?”
“Sheesh. Do you know anything at all?”
“Neath rhe moon, loometh red Venus at Orion's head When the day and night both match Then the catbaby doth be hatched”
“First of all, that's terrible. You went on a quest based on this?”
“Well... it was more the reverence with with you were referred.”
“What does that mean? Anyway, catbabies aren't hatched. That's silly.”
“How did you, um, where did you come from?”
“I just woke up. Just now. That's all.”
“But... Where did you come from?”
“I just am.”
She sat and nonchalantly licked her paw.
“That would mean I risked everything for something that didn't exist.”
“Maybe. Have you considered the possibility that I am in fact the manifestation of your desires and the resultant journey you undertook? That each painful step along the way went into the creation of my very being?”
“No. No, I hadn't.”
“Good. It's a silly thought. Look, I'm not going to teach you how to tame me.”
“Can you be tamed?”
“Absolutely not. It doesn't mean you can't try.”
He fixed his brow with a determined gaze. “I just might indeed.”
“Easy, Conan,” she laughed.
“You're not one of those Gorean bores, are you?”
“Ugh! So uncreative. Day in and day out.”
“You lost me back there a bit.”
Ignoring him, she continued on.
“Put out your hand,” she told him.
At this, he raised an eyebrow.
“I mean, 'Please put out your hand, sir'.”
He did so this time, and she stepped into his hand from the rock she had been crouching on. As she did , she began to change and shrink.
A half-second later, she sat in his palm, a tiny teacup calico kitten, as vulnerable as an exposed heart.
He blinked, sure this was a fever dream, and that he was dying of thirst in a canyon somewhere.
She let out a mew, and suddenly his hand could no longer contain her, nor could his arm support her weight. Before he knew was was happening, she had him pinned beneath her full-sized cat form. She flexed her claws into him ever so slightly, and then let out a mid-volume roar.
He shuddered, and then she was back to her regular catbaby form, a female of human persuasion, with a tail and distinctly feline features.
Curled up on his chest, like it was the most natural thing in the world.
What else could he do? He dozed with her, the desolate clearing suddenly the most comfortable bed one could imagine. Light and shadow played across their faces, animating their figures even as they remained immobile.
He allowed himself, hesitatingly, to stroke her back. A sound somewhere between 'mmmm' and a sigh escaped her lips, and she...purred.
When he awoke, after a nap that felt suspiciously like an eternity, it was to a rough tongue on his cheek.
“Hello, magic catbaby here.”
“Magic?” he said, opening his eyes to the light.
“Silly! What else would you call it?”
He considered this, and was forced to admit he didn't have a better word.
“There's a certain...synergy...at work with catbabies.”
“And what does that mean, exactly?”
“I'm not sure,” she said simply, shrugging it off.
He felt as if he had failed a test of some sort. There were protocols of every kind in his world, and he had mastered a great many of them. Verbal repartee with beautiful young women was not part of his skill set, much less shapeshifters, for lack of a better word.
“Not a shapeshifter,” she said. “Try again.”
“But a bit of a mindreader, though...”
“There's that,” she said.
“How old are you?”
“What kind of question is that?”
“It's just that you said you were just, um, born. I was just wondering.”
“You sure do say 'just' a lot.”
Her tail twitched, and she blinked sweetly.
“You feel ancient.”
“Wow. Smooth talker.”
“That's better. Word choice.”
“There you go. But, if you must know,” she sniffed, “I am as mature as I am ever going to be.”
She propped herself up with an elbow on his chest.
“One might take that more than one way.”
“One might take me more than one way, would one stop questioning everything. But if you must know, yes, catbabies are born with all the knowledge and experience of their predecessors. So, while I was technically conceived in your mind some time ago, I did come into existence when you looked at me. Before that, I was there/not there. Does that make any sense?”
He nodded. Strangely enough, it rather did.
“So, yes, timeless, etc. But I'm a kitten. By your standards...” She probed his mind slightly. “Fifteen.”
“Yes, and frankly I've done enough explaining for one day. I'm fifteen for a reason.”
“What do I call you?”
“Call me? I'm Kitty. Kitten. It's not like there are a lot of other catbabies roaming the countryside that you might confuse me with.”
“We'll encounter other people some day. They might not appreciate you as fully as I do.”
He was putting it mildly, and she did enjoy seeing the horrors he was willing to protect her from when she took a glimpse at his thoughts.
“Really? Why Marie, of all things?”
“Why not Marie?”
“I dunno. I was just thinking you would go more cliché, somehow.”
“I did ask a question...”
“Marie, because it's a name that attempts to bridge adolescence and adulthood. The young girl-”
“Catbaby,” she interrupted.
“The young catbaby coming of age.”
“That,” she said, “Is the most fantastically pervy thing you could have said.”
His shoulders slumped, defeated.
She tapped him on the shoulder with her tail.
“Lighten up,” she said. “Daddy...”
“What?” he said, taken aback.
“Did you ever further consider that you are a manifestation of my wants and desires?”
“I haven't been able to think in hours, to tell you the truth. I have lost all conception of reality.”
“Well, you're my Daddy now. You don't get to choose that part.”
“But why?” “Why is it always 'why' with you? Don't question the wisdom of the ancients. If we're asking questions, I would ask you why we would ever have to leave here?”
“It's a volcano!”
“Yes, but my nest is cozy.”
“You're mixing metaphors!”
“I'm not sure it's metaphoric. Besides, it's a catnest.”
Her logic was unassailable.
“There's nothing to eat here.”
“Please. Birds. Rabbits. It's what I do.”
“You deserve a proper bed.”
“Like, a nest with, um, grass or something? That might be nice.”
“So you don't know what a bed is? A cushion? A house?”
She blinked long feline lashes at him. “A what?”
“Aha!” he said. “So I'm not at a total disadvantage!”
“Did you just say that out loud?”
“Of course you're not, silly. Honestly, it's so exhausting trying to drag you along. But if you were at a total disadvantage, as you say, what fun would that be?”
“So the only way for you to have a disadvantage, in what I have no idea, is for you to think you're at a disadvantage. So thank you for coming to the realization that you're not.”
He tried to let that sink in. It was as if she possessed half of the world's knowledge, and he the other. Lock. Key. Cushion...bed.
“So when are you going to mount me?” she asked, breaking his reverie.
“I see where you're going, there. Yes, a bed might be nice. And a...fire?”
“No one said anything about 'mounting'.” “Drop the pretense. I scarcely need to read your mind for that.”
“Okay. I admit that. But I never thought in such terms.”
“Honey,” she said, “Have you ever seen two cats?”
He considered this, and shuddered a bit.
“Okay, one more catbaby protip. I said I was done an hour ago.”
“Catbabies, upon bonding with a Daddy, mate for life.”
“How would such a bonding occur?”
“No more questions...” she said.
With her words still echoing in his ears, she became a kitten again.
Before tucking her into his shirt, he held her up and said, “In my village, 'Marie' means 'brat'...”
The walk back down as much easier than he had expected. It was as if, instead of imposing a burden, she made his steps lighter. Either that, or she was doing freaky things to time. He glanced inside of his shirt twice along the way, to make sure she was still there.
When he was back past the treeline, he had a idea.
At a higher elevation, he had noticed a wide swathe of pasture, that wasn't visible from the road.
A pasture with cows.
His pack of stores was down to pemmican and a skin of water. But he needed something. His hat?
He settled upon a wide, flat leaf, which he stitched up with a few well-placed twigs, forming a workable bowl.
Then he stretched his coat out for her in a sunlight-speckled patch of shade. He cradled her in both palms, and placed her there, trying his best not to wake her.
Finally, he got down to the matter at hand.
Of course, he understood how foolish it was to talk to a cow. At least, he would have thought that until today. But he had hoped soothing tones would lull them into compliance.
“Come here, Bossy. That's a good cow. Who's a good cow?”
Without startling them, he couldn't really get closer than five feet or so. They simply moved away as though following a prescribed minimum distance for cow-human interaction.
If he had something to feed them... Which seemed to be a lost cause, given they were grazing already. Then an idea so horrible struck him, he almost couldn't bring himself to try.
He checked on the sleeping catbaby, and got the pemmican from his knapsack. Goats ate anything, right? And goat were rather like tiny cows. Tiny bearded cows, he supposed.
He scanned the herd for a particularly hungry looking cow, and learned that he was a poor judge of bovine hunger. Instead, he was reduced to walking slowly up to them, bag extended, in the hopes that they might catch a whiff of something they wanted.
The first few didn't, and continued their pattern of diffident, though polite, rejection.
But then one instead walked forward. It was a somewhat cross-eyed cow, which was off-putting. He considered whether he wanted to use this particular one, in fact. With little choice in the matter, he decided to go for it.
He put a handful of the dried meat in his hand and extended within a few inches of it's nose.
“Who's a crazy cow? Huh? Who's a good, crazy cannibal cow?”
The creature bellowed. Apparently, it was.
“Have a taste, Mr. Mrs. Cow.”
It was eating out of the palm of his hand, as they say. And it tickled.
What he held was gone with one swipe of a gigantic tongue. He had to work fast.
He placed the remainder of his food on the ground in front of it, and moved to its side while it was distracted.
He was an expert milker. Which was no big deal, as so was everyone he had ever known. To his delight, though, he was met with many large streams, which filled the bowl almost to brimming.
He was trying to get a few squirts to himself when the cow began to walk off again, dragging him with it. He received a faceful of milk for the effort, and struggled to keep the makeshift bowl upright.
Lilting laughter pierced the countryside air. He turned to see her sitting upright on his coat, tail twitching.
“Erm, how long have you been watching?”
“Long enough,” she said, smiling.
“Here,” he said. “I brought you something.”
“Ooh! What?” He tail was twitching faster now.
“Milk, it's called.”
“Milk! I know what that is, it's, it's...”
“I thought you might enjoy it.”
He started to hand her the bowl, and it was almost in her hands, when he said, “Wait...”
He placed it on the coat.
She reached for the bowl.
“Not like that!” It came out much sharper than he had intended. “Um, humor me,” he said.
“How, then? I wants it!”
“On all fours.”
“Hmmm,” she said as if debating the issue.
But there was no debate, even if the silly mortal didn't know a catbaby from a hole in a cow pasture. It was more fun keeping him in the dark, anyway. She could no more disobey such a command than she could not be a kitten.
Even so, it was adorable. The first attempt, she stuck her nose in the bowl, and had to withdraw. She shook her face and blew out droplets of milk on the grass.
“Shut up,” she said.
“I didn't say anything!”
“You're still talking,,,” she said.
On the second go, she attempted to master the tongue thing, and found it took more practice than such an ordinary function should. But the taste! She couldn't lap milk up fast enough.
He watched, fascinated, as her claws flexed out a bit, instinctively, and she became more catlike. her tail switched to and fro, accenting her backside marvelously.
He stroked her back, and she accepted his hand without question. Expected it, perhaps.
When she was down to the last, she licked the last few drops from the leaf.
“Excuse you. That wasn't very lady-like.”
“I'm a catbaby. Being lady-like isn't a consideration for me. That was so good! Almost good enough to make me forget that you gave up the last of your food for me.”
“Yes, well. How often does one get to introduce a catbaby to milk for the first time?”
“That is a very good point indeed.”
“I suppose I could have just fed you the kibble,” he said, more to himself than her.
“Stop,” she said.
He glanced her way.
“I mean, please stop worrying, Daddy.”
Sometimes she wondered if he did know more about catbabies than he let on.
Back on the rutted wagon trail, they chased the sun until he was forced to consider the possibility of shelter for the night. Barring an extremely coincidental barn or abandoned farmhouse, they were faced with a night in the outdoors, which simply wouldn't do at all. Catbaby though she was, she was also a lady.
It was a fruitless, if considerate, line of thought. She could sleep anywhere. Marie shook her head, unsure whether to be touched or annoyed. But his imagined dilemma did lead them to an interesting discovery. The hilly terrain gave way to a ridge, which they began to follow in silent agreement.
She smelled the water, and heard the rushing sounds long before he did.
They walked hand in hand along the rock wall, down to where the ground grew sandy. The moon floated large on the rippling surface of the stream.
“Yay!”, she said, releasing his hand and running the rest of the distance giggling. For a moment, he thought she was going in, but then she slowed to a walk, and dropped down for a drink. On her knees, at first, she started to scoop together two handfuls of water, and then thought better of it.
The catbaby dropped onto all fours and lowered her head, instead. Clearly conscious of what she was doing, she gave her hindquarters a little shake, her tail broadcasting her excitement.
It was, he found, useful that her tail could indicate so many moods. No matter how quizzically she spoke, how maddening her questions, he never had to guess as to how she was feeling. All women need tails, he thought. To himself, he hoped.
Her mind reading was disconcerting was first. Then it became unnerving. At some point along the way, he came to the realization that he held no secrets from her, and ceased to be concerned with the intrusion.
He reached her side, and she stood, wiping her mouth dry.
“Good Daddy,” she said, smiling.
Following a hunch, he led her around a bend, and found what he was after. It was a flat sandstone ledge, carved when the tributary was more voluminous and rapid in velocity, and forming a small sort of long, open-sided cave.
“I'm very sorry,” he said. “I'm afraid we'll have to sleep here tonight.”
“Why are you sorry?”
“Because it's not what I had hoped for you, on your first night.”
“But I had no expectation. I'm a catbaby. Where was I sleeping when I met you?”
“So, by apologizing for an event of which I had no conception, you've actually diminished my confidence in you.”
He was startled into silence when she hissed at him for the first time ever. Just as quickly, she was smiling. It was message enough, and he dropped the entire line of discussion.
“Lay down,” he said, arranging his coat into a pillow for their heads.
They crawled into the nook, just wide enough for two, and she pushed her back against him for warmth, until he took notice and wrapped his arms around her chest, holding her tight and still.
Together, they watched the moonlight play upon the water, and listened to a symphony of crickets, frogs, and owls. They shared the beauty in silence, and he thought she had settled in after a few contented sighs.
“So when are we going to do it?” she asked him, still facing away from him.
“What? Do what?” he asked, instantly agitated.
“Yooou knoooow,” she said in her most teasingest voice. “You think about me all the time.”
And of course this was true.
He was unable to come up with an effective answer to her question, so he just squeezed her tighter and said, “Ssshhhh.”
It was, somehow, the right answer. She fell silent, contented by his direction, and went to sleep in short order