207: Hot Meal

on May 1, 2008 in Book 8

In Which Mackenzie Gets Served

I took a decent sized mouthful of the amber liquid. It was sticky sweet, but not sickly so. I held it in my mouth for a bit, enjoying the taste. There was a slight tingle in my nostrils and the back of my throat as I swallowed it.

“That’s… nice,” I said. I felt a lightening of my mood within seconds of it hitting my stomach. My head felt clearer and fuzzier at the same time. “What is it?”

“Mead,” Feejee said. “Dwarven mead.”

“Oh,” I said. I took another sip, a little bit more respectfully. Hazel had made it sound like drinking dwarven mead was physically painful or something, but this was good. Maybe her small size just meant she couldn’t handle it? I had a few more bits of pork, and then took another drink.

“Maybe we should get you your own bottle,” Feejee said, smiling at me from behind her hand.

“Oh, sorry!” I said, handing it back. “It’s good. Sweet.”

“Yeah, apparently, normal fermenting just transmutes sugar to alcohol,” Feejee said. “The dwarves have a technique that doesn’t do that as much, somehow. Have some more pork.”

She inched the plate across the bench towards me, and I scooted closer as well. It was pretty good, and I was starving, or at least, I felt like I was. It was way too early for me to be hungry for real, but the smell of humanity in the air was making my mouth water and my stomach growl.

After getting permission from Feejee to continue sharing her drink and doing a little experimenting, I figured out that a touch of mead in my mouth with the meat gave a slightly closer approximation of the sensation of actual human flesh, at least with regards to the wonderful, intoxicating sweetness of it.

It still wasn’t the real thing, but it was good.

“You know who I would totally eat?” I said, after I’d had a bit more of the bottle. I had been thinking this, not realizing my mouth was currently connected to my brain, but once I’d said it out loud I decided to run with it.

“Who?” Feejee asked.

“Fucking Trina,” I said. “I can’t stand her… two-faced, three-eyed bitch.”

“She’s kind of scrawny, though,” Feejee said.

“Have you seen her ass?” I asked. “I mean, have you got a good look at it?”

“I don’t normally look at other women’s asses, actually.”

“Where you really want to look at is the thighs,” Iona said. “Big, juicy legs with a lot of meat on them, especially near the top… that’s the best part. Though, the organs are good, if you like a richer flavor.”

“Oh, that would probably be to Mack’s taste,” Feejee said. “Blood’s your focus food, right? You can get a lot of blood just eating the vitals.”

“Uh, yeah,” I said. I squirmed a little on the bench. It felt like there was a bright light shining down on my face. Oddly, the topic of blood made me more uncomfortable than eating people.

Maybe it was because I’d had it drilled into my head while I’d never even thought of consuming other things until my first inadvertent taste of human flesh, or maybe it was because I knew I could keep talking about eating somebody in the abstract forever but sooner or later I’d need to drink more blood.

“I like a big ol’ thigh because you can sink your teeth into them all the way and then rip off a huge chunk,” Iona said, holding her hands in front of her like she had a leg in her grip and was taking a huge bite out of it.

The conversation was starting to edge back into unsettling territory. I took another swig of mead, and that seemed to help.

“The thing you have to realize is, we don’t go around eating humans all the time,” Feejee said. “If we did, it probably wouldn’t be half as exciting, you know? It’s for special occasions. It’s an event.”

The mead was adding a layer of surreality to the whole experience, above and beyond simply being locked in a steam room with two gorgeous, exotic, naked women who were cheerfully describing their love of human flesh. It was making it easier for me to handle the topic, to try to get my head around it a bit.

“So, it doesn’t seem like you’d run into a lot of humans out in the middle of the sea,” I said. My thoughts seemed to be lining up a little sluggishly, but this seemed like an important point to clarify. I mean, eating people was eating people, there was no two ways about it… but it was certainly less objectionable if they were already dead, and possibly a little bit better if they might have died, anyway. “Do you only eat people when they go overboard or shipwreck?”

“Well… sort of, I guess,” Feejee said, though from the way she wound a strand of damp hair around her finger and looked off to the side, it was obvious this was kind of stretching the truth. “I mean, our laws say that humans in the water are fair game, and from a purely practical standpoint it’s easier that way.”

“But nothing says we can’t sort of help them on their way, if they insist on staying in their little boats,” Iona said. “Anyway, don’t call it ‘eating people.’ They aren’t people when I eat them.”

“What do you mean?” I asked.

“They’re food,” she said. “People you talk to or hang out with. People have thoughts and feelings and rights. Food, on the other hand, is just delicious and sustaining.”

“But… they still have thoughts and feelings,” I said. “That doesn’t magically change just because they’re in the water, or because you’ve got your mouth on them.”

Iona shook her head stubbornly.

“It does,” she said.

“Well, I’m sure from their point of view…” Feejee said.

“Food doesn’t have a point of view, Fee-Fee,” Iona said. “I’m not trying to be racist, but that’s just how it is. You probably won’t understand this until you go back this summer and make your next kill.”

“So… do other people know about this?” I asked. “I mean, nobody seems to be afraid of you the way they are of me.”

“It’s not exactly common knowledge, no,” Feejee said.

“We’d kind of like to keep it that way, by the way,” Iona said. “We figured we could count on a little solidarity from you, on that point.”

“Yeah. Just think about it this way,” Feejee said. “If word gets around and there’s a panic, then we’ll probably have to kill a bunch of people in self-defense.” She was smiling an extremely friendly smile as she said this, as if she thought this was the most reassuring thing in the world that she could say. “But if it stays quiet… well, you’re keeping more people than us safe.”

They were both looking at me expectantly. Feejee handed me the bottle again. I didn’t know what to say, so I took a long pull from it. Fucking hell, that shit was good… and it seemed to get better the more of it I drank.

They both nodded, and it seemed as if my acceptance of the bottle had been taken as an answer.

I was fine with that.

I was fine with pretty much anything.

“I’d eat Trina,” I said again, picking at a piece of pork. Both mermaids were watching me. Iona looked avid. Feejee looked amused. Rather than making me self-conscious about my declaration, their attention emboldened me. “I’d sneak up behind her and strangle her… wait, no, I’d keep her alive so she can watch and feel it. I’d just have to gag her first so she didn’t talk me to death while I was doing it. Maybe with an apple, like the pigs upstairs.”

“What if she tastes as nasty as she acts, though?” Feejee asked. “Wouldn’t that be funny? If personality and flavor were the same? Like, sweet and good people would taste sweet and good.”

“Not much incentive for being nice,” I said.

“No, but it would be kind of fitting,” Feejee said. “Don’t you think?”

“You two are crazy,” Iona said. “It’s just meat.”

I giggled. The talk of sweet people tasting sweet had struck a chord. An earlier image, one I’d tried to forget, had just returned to my head: Two on a platter, with an apple in her mouth. Trina was meatier and would be more satisfying on several levels, but if Two ended up being half as good a meal as she was a person…

“See, it’s not so bad to think about,” Feejee said. “It’s natural, for us.”

“Yeah,” I agreed, letting the word out slowly. “Natural.”

It was probably better to eat Trina than Two, I thought in a lazy sort of way. I mean, eating Trina would be a public service. But as long as it was just my imagination, why not go for the whole hog, so to speak?

Two with one of her alice bands and an apple in her mouth… or better, a great big bow in her hair, like she was wrapped up with a ribbon.

Though, there would be something infinitely satisfying about taking a nice, big bite out of Trina’s juicy rear. Maybe she could describe the sensation to Gladys over her mirror while I did it.

Or I could just have another go at Rocky. She’d tasted so good the first time… and just like Trina, it would be one more recurring headache gone.

Why not? She’d probably kill me if she had the chance, and not even for any reason. If I got her first, at least she wouldn’t go to waste.

“If you think about it,” Iona said, “you could probably get away with it easier than we could, Mack.”

“Oh, no fucking way,” I said, my mind snapping back to cold reality, where killing and eating people was a very bad idea and fundamentally wrong. “I couldn’t actually do this… and even if I could, guardsmen and clerics would be all over me.”

“No, think about it,” Iona said. “The way you eat bones and all? No evidence. Somebody just… disappears. Not like it doesn’t happen, you know? Might as well happen in your favor. Or… our favor.”

“We’re just talking here, Io,” Feejee said. “Remember? That was the plan. Just talk about it. Get it out of our systems in a healthy way.”

“Well, if we’re going to talk about it, let’s talk about it,” Iona said. “If you think about it, if we actually did eat somebody, that’s probably the best way to get it out of our systems.”

“Not me,” I said. “I didn’t even have a taste for human flesh until like a week ago, when I sort of accidentally had some. I had no idea I’d enjoy it. I just knew I needed virgin blood… and I had no idea how good that was, fresh.”

My body shuddered with remembered pleasure and I let out a little whimper as the sensual memory of the taste of Tyler’s blood dripping from his arm, the feeling of Rocky’s soft flesh in my mouth, washed over me.

“Must have been a good meal,” Feejee said, nodding and grinning that knowing grin.

“Yeah,” I said, in a small voice. “It was.” I reached for the mead and took another drink.

“Anyway, Io… on a practical level,” Feejee said, “it would take so much planning to make sure that we wouldn’t get caught that the semester would probably be half over before we could do it, and if we can wait half a semester before we actually eat someone, we can wait the other half. Right?” She looked at me, silently appealing for support.

“I’d prefer to go my whole life without actually eating someone,” I said. “And I thought it was only people in the water you ate?”

“Well, we could lure somebody into the river or a lake or something,” Iona said, with a shrug. “I mean, when you get right down to it, it’s more of a tradition than anything else.”

“It’s probably best to just keep it as a fantasy, for now,” Feejee said. “We can talk about it, and we can dream. That doesn’t hurt anything.”

“No,” I agreed. I blushed. “I actually… well…”

“What?” Feejee asked.

“Nothing,” I said.

“Tell us,” Iona said.

“Well, when I’m with Ian… the thing is, he’s kind of… I mean, his skin tastes…”

Feejee laughed.

“I do that with Rick, too,” she said. “It drives him wild, and he’s got no idea why I’m so interested in licking his skin. He thinks it’s some big thing I’m doing for him.”

“So that’s why you two date the livestock,” Iona said.

We both gave her a dirty look.

“That isn’t the reason I’m with Rick,” Feejee said. “It’s just an added benefit.”

“No, but it makes sense now,” Iona said. “And to think of all those times you swore up and down you’d never dream of eating him.”

“I wouldn’t,” Feejee said indignantly. “There’s a difference between fantasizing about something and actually doing it.”

“But fantasizing is pretty much the definition of ‘dreaming of’,” Iona said.

“Oh, shut up,” Feejee said. “You know, though… while we’re on the subject, I’d bet we could talk a couple of the Rampant Badgers into coming in here and giving us a little taste-test.” She giggled. “I’m sure they wouldn’t mind having a couple of beautiful women drooling all over them for an hour or so.”

“Uh, two of us have boyfriends,” I said.

“Yeah, well, it wouldn’t be sexual for us,” Feejee said. “Though we don’t have to tell them that. What do you think?” she asked Iona. “Should we go ‘fishing’?”

“I say yeah,” Iona said.

“I don’t think this is really a great idea,” I said. I still felt pretty sharp and focused, all things considered… but on the other hand, the room was wobbling a little bit around the edges. “What if we get out of hand?”

“Oh, well, if you don’t want to…” Feejee said. “It was just a thought.”

“The thing is, Fee-Fee,” Iona said, getting up from the bench and walking around Feejee to stand over me, “she’s practically food herself. I mean, look at her.” She leaned in close and I saw her nostrils twitch. “Smell her. Half-human, right?”

I was very uncomfortable with the level of scrutiny, but her eyes sort of… held me. She bent forward and ran her tongue along my cheek. I shivered.

“And,” she said, pausing to brush my hair out of the way and then lick across my forehead, “if she’s worried about things getting out of hand… she’s invulnerable, right?”

She sank her teeth into the soft tissue of my ear. I gasped. She wrenched her head around and it turned into a scream, and then a moan.

Iona released and sprang back, grinning down at me. Her smile seemed wider than before and I noticed her teeth appeared to be extra sharp… and numerous. My body shook. That within me which was human knew it was looking at something higher up the food chain than it, and it was reacting.

“Smell that, Fee-Fee?” Iona said, breathing in. “That’s the scent of fear. That’s the scent of prey.”

“Hang on,” Feejee said. “I think I’m going to need some more mead in my system if we’re going to do this.” She lifted the bottle to her mouth and knocked back the rest of it in one go, then set it on the floor. “Okay, ready.”

“If you’re going to do what?” I asked. I had an idea. I wasn’t sure if I liked it or not. Rather, I was sure that I liked it and I was sure that I didn’t.

“Just… taste, a bit,” she said. “We wouldn’t… I mean, we couldn’t if we wanted to, you know? You’ll be perfectly safe.”

“Oh, don’t take all the fun out of it,” Iona said, sliding onto the bench beside me, on the other side from Feejee.

“Take off your towel, Mack,” Feejee said quietly.

I got to my feet and unwrapped myself, letting the towel fall to the floor. Feejee moved the plate to the other side of the bench and scooted closer, pulling me back down onto the bench

They both ran their hands over my body. It would have been erotic, in another context… okay, fuck that. It was erotic. Feejee leaned in and ran her nose up and down the length of my forearm, drinking in my scent for almost a minute before she extended her tongue and licked.

“Oh, Father and Mother, that’s good,” she said, and it was almost a groan. She pressed her mouth to my forearm and sucked, then pressed her teeth down gently. I felt them shift from mostly flat and round to needle-like before she bit down, and so was able to make a little startled gasp before it turned into a moan.

“You know, Fee-Fee, if I didn’t know better, I’d think this bit of meat likes being eaten,” Iona said. She slid off the bench and began rubbing her hair over the side of my leg, sniffing and licking. “I think she’s into it.”

“I told you there was something wrong with her head,” Feejee said. She held my arm up to her mouth and was moving down its length in a way that anybody watching would have thought she was kissing it.

That was really the key to it all, of course. Naturally I didn’t like the idea of being eaten… and that was so not me being in denial and saying that I didn’t like something when clearly I did. Not that I do that to begin with.

But the thing was, having two gorgeous mermaids in human guise putting their mouths all over your body was having two gorgeous mermaids in human guise putting their mouths all over your body, any which way you sliced it.

So long as the “slicing” was metaphorical, anyway.

Being called “meat” was more than a little creepy, but it also did something for me. It was demeaning, dehumanizing, objectifying… it was wonderful.

Under all that was a healthy dose of paralyzing fear, as my human side experienced the true meaning of the words “mortal terror.”

We had our empires, and our magic and metal, but the world was not ours. Wander outside the boundaries… stray outside the lighted paths… and you could be stepping into the waiting jaws of death.

Here there be monsters.

The world was not ours.

We only lived in it, and that briefly.

They both bit, nibbled, and sucked like their lives depended on it, pulling my limbs this way and that like some obscene tug-of-war. I could feel the strength in their muscles… not demon-strong, but strong enough that I could imagine being pulled in two.

I was turned sideways up on the bench and then laid down, with my head facing Feejee and my legs more or less in Iona’s lap. Feejee leaned over and planted fierce mermaid kisses on my cheeks, then down my neck, and onto my shoulder. Iona took up a position with her head between my legs—subtle parallel, that—and was biting hard on my thigh. I think she’d lost herself in the act, forgotten that it was play, forgotten that she couldn’t actually rend and tear and sever and end. She growled her frustration and shook like a dog with a bone.

The attention, the pain, the everything… all the feelings were bleeding together and it was driving me wild. I was writhing, bucking, gasping, moaning, crying.

I was dying. I was living.

I was pretty much coming by the gallon, too.

There was an intrusion at the corner of my consciousness, an anomalous presence or impression or sound, but I couldn’t place it or focus on it.

Not while I was being devoured.

Iona released her hold and raised her head, giving a howl of wordless rage. My head was raised enough that I could look down and see her through the haze of steam and mead. Her hair had become feathers. Her eyes were black and beady. Her lips had turned scaly and were pulled apart in a terrifying rictus, displaying rows of teeth like knives.

It was the eyes that grabbed me, though. It was like looking into a void, a pair of twin black vortices sucking everything down into oblivion.

I screamed. I think Feejee, latched onto my neck like a lamprey, came. Iona looked down and saw what was right in front of her: the loose folds of my labia, dark and swollen with blood.

What did that look like, to her? What else could it have looked like but food.

I didn’t even see her move. The pain was white-hot. The only thing that compared was being smote with true faith.

I was screaming again, or still, and this time it was a chorus. There was another voice screaming alongside mine, somewhat remote but cutting through the clutter of pain and pleasure and fear and sex.

The biting pressure stopped all at once. The pain receded more slowly. The stars cleared from my vision and I looked up to see Iona’s face melting back to normal.

We’d stopped, but the screaming hadn’t.

The first thing I realized was that it was coming from outside the door.

The second was that it was Ian.

The bit I worked out last was that he was screaming my name.

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6 Responses to “207: Hot Meal”

  1. pedestrian says:

    It’s only fun when you are at the apex of the food chain.

    Current score: 2
  2. Daniel says:

    Why don’t mermaid teeth count as magical? Or do they and it isn’t mentioned in this chapter that she has real injuries?

    Current score: 0
    • Moridain says:

      Well, they mentioned those creatures before were able to do all sorts of things, including spitting acid, but they also had no magical attacks.

      I think the idea is that ‘magical’ natural attacks is the exception not the rule, which is why Steff was so impressed by Mack’s teeth early on.

      Current score: 1
  3. tijay says:

    Does dead demon flesh stay invulnerable after? Cos demon jerky

    Current score: 1
    • Arancaytar says:

      This was sort-of cleared up later on by Iona.

      “Listen, I’m going to get myself a magic knife, I’m going to slip it right inside your little mammal-dimple here,” she said, poking a finger into my navel through my shirt,” and just… unzip you, all the way up to the bone. The stuff that spills out will be plenty vulnerable, once it’s separated from you. I’ve been reading up on this.”


      Current score: 0
  4. Jechtael says:

    I’m wondering if Mack’s invulnerable to being torn, or just being cut. Like, if a pair of trolls tried to pull her leg off, if it’d actually come off or if would just really, really hurt.

    As for the situation, this is rape-by-intoxication, but I don’t know if Mackenzie is, ah, what’s the word… “competent”, enough, for Ian to blame her for giving in to her impulses when the merfolk tempted her (especially given that she JUST got lectured TWICE about having not-technically-sex).

    Edited: Spelling error.

    Current score: 2