127: Cups In Athanasia

on December 31, 2007 in 05: The Weekend Shift

In Which Beer Is Spilled

Gabe’s room was about what I would have predicted: dirty clothes on the floor, including underwear in plain sight… big posters of naked girls with swords on the walls… and beer and soda cans on the desk, the top of the minifridge, the dresser, and the TV.

Notably, there was only one bed, one desk, and one dresser. I felt a little conflicted: there was no way a toad like Gabe deserved a single room, but there was no way anybody else deserved him for a roommate.

He even had his own little crystal ball on the desk. It was one of those new tiny models that makes up for its size by projecting an illusion of whatever it’s viewing in the air above it. In this case, this was a still scene of a naked woman, leaning back and tossing her head, with a stream of water from an unseen source splashing over her naked body.

Her legs were spread wide, and her pussy was… well, you know how sometimes when you pull your hand out of a glove, it wants to stick to your fingers and ends up turning half inside-out? That’s about what this girl looked like.

It grossed me out, but I couldn’t help thinking about Amaranth and her considerably less unpleasant feminine parts: tight, trim… even almost tasteful, in a way.

“Your girl’s got good taste in porn,” Gabe said, and I realized I was staring at the model.

“I think it’s nasty,” I said, looking away. “How can you stand to look at something like that?”

“Oh, I do more than look,” he said. He gestured at the black base on which the crystal ball rested. “That little baby can project tactile animated illusions… they only last about five minutes before it has to recharge for an hour, but that’s long enough.”

“That’s not the sort of thing most men would admit to,” Tyler said.

“What, you’d wait for the illusion to come first?” Gabe asked.

“I wouldn’t stick my dick in an illusionary girl in the first place,” Tyler said.

“Yeah, but would you stick it in a real one?” Gabe asked.

“If I was serious about her,” Tyler said. “But you’d be the last person I’d tell about it.”

“Why don’t you clear that off so we can play?” Mike said, pointing at the figure of the woman reclining in mid-air.

“How’s it stopping us?” Gabe said.

“Let’s just play,” Ian said.

“Right,” Gabe said. “Somebody lock the door.”

“Do we really have to?” I asked uncertainly.

“Can’t have anybody just walking in when we’re drinking,” Gabe said.

“You know it still opens from the inside just the same,” Ian said. He pushed the knob in to lock it, and then turned it to demonstrate. “See?”

“Okay,” I said, and he locked it again. I still felt uneasy, but I knew it was for no real reason so I said nothing.

Gabe pulled the case of beer from its nominal hiding spot beneath his bed. I say “nominal” because if the bed had been made, the oversized comforter might have hung down over the edge and actually obscured it from view. That wouldn’t have done anything for the empties all around the room, of course.

Everybody sat down on the floor and took a can of beer from the case. Gabe cracked his in what I think was supposed to be a macho fashion but really just made it look like it took his entire hand to work the pull tab, and immediately choked down–emphasis on choke–half the can. Mike and Tyler took more cautious sips. I’d hazard a guess from his facial expression that Mike at least didn’t particularly care for it, but he took another sip almost right away.

Ian just took a drink like it was no big deal. No, it wasn’t just like it was no big deal… it was no big deal. That bothered me more than Gabe’s attempt to make it into a big deal. I watched, not sure what I was waiting for, but he just set the can down on the bare floor, flipped a copper coin into the center of the group, and reached for the deck of cards.

Everybody else threw their own coin in, too. He shuffled, then began dealing the cards around. Apparently they used the entire deck without trumps, with all fifty six cards dealt at the beginning. The guys picked up their cards once they were all dealt and each picked three to pass.

Ian gave me an overview of the rules, which went right over my head. Not because I’m slow or because the game’s actually that complicated, but because things like that rarely make sense unless you can see them in action. I just nodded.

“Okay, ladies… who’s gotta douche?” Gabe asked when all the card-swapping was done.

“Excuse me?” I asked.

“Deuce,” Ian said, putting down the two of wands. “Whoever has the two of wands starts the game. Everybody else has to play a wand to follow, if they’ve got one.”

I watched while as Mike, Gabe, and Tyler laid down the knight, ten, and ace of wands.

“Ty played the high card, so he takes the trick,” Ian explained, as Tyler pulled the cards to him. “And now he starts the next one.”

“Kheez, Mason, what are you, the color commentary?” Gabe asked.

“She wants to learn,” Ian said.

“It’s cups,” Gabe said. “It isn’t exactly high sorcery.”

“You know, I’m fine just watching,” I told Ian. “Really.”

Tyler put down the ten of swords. Ian, I guess because he didn’t have any swords, played the page of pentacles. Mike played the seven of swords and Gabe played the three. Tyler took the trick again.

“See, because my card was a different suit…” Ian began.

“Yeah, I got that,” I said. “Is the goal to take the trick, or not?”

“It depends,” Ian said. “You get control of the next trick if you do, but you don’t want to be stuck with any cups, or the… uh, the queen of swords. Those are the point cards.”

“So, high score is bad,” I said.

“What do you know, it can be taught!” Gabe proclaimed.

I didn’t have time to say anything before Ian said, “Gabe.” Just that. Not especially loud and not especially hard. It got his attention, though.

“What?” he asked.

“Don’t be a dick.”

“Hey, I’ve got a sense of humor,” Gabe said. “If you don’t, and she doesn’t, that’s your problem, not mine.”

“Just don’t,” Ian said.

“Okay, okay,” Gabe said, and the game continued. Tyler kept playing swords until he was out of them, and Gabe took the last of those tricks with the king. This included a page of cups, courtesy of Ian. Gabe turned around and played the seven of cups.

“You can’t lead with cups unless they’ve been ‘spilled’ in another hand, or you don’t have anything else left,” Ian explained.

He ended up taking that trick, having played his lowest cup card, the eight.

“Swallow it, bitch,” Gabe said, taking an obscene amount of pride in being partially responsible for Ian taking four points in the opening round of a low stakes card game. “Every… last… drop.”

“You want to watch your language?” Ian said.

“There is a lady present,” Tyler said.

“You talking about you or Mason?” Gabe asked. “Seriously, though, like she cares… she’s a demon. She runs around naked and fucks a fucking nymph. Does that sound like a lady to you?”

“I honestly don’t care, but it’s got nothing to do with me being half demon,” I said.

“Gabe, come on,” Tyler said. “The demon thing is pretty tasteless but that’s no reason to be crass.”

“What do you mean, tasteless?” I asked. “It’s what I am.”

“Can we just play?” Ian asked.

The game continued, and Ian managed to dodge the rest of the points. When all the cards had been played, only Mike ended up untouched. Tyler had seven points, and Gabe had sixteen… including thirteen from the queen. He was still talking about what he called “busting Ian’s cherry,” though.

Everybody who’d taken points had to throw another coin into the pot. Ian told me they played until somebody broke a hundred points, and then whoever had the lowest took the whole pot.

In the second round they passed the cards to the right. Gabe–who was also on his second beer–broke out early in a run where he seemed to be taking all the points he could, laying down wands first and then pentacles when nobody else had them in order to keep the lead and snatching up the cups and even the queen of swords. He seemed outraged when Mike took control from him with the seven of pentacles and ended the round with two points.

“He was trying to slay the dragon,” Ian said. “If you can get all the point cards, everybody else takes twenty-seven points and you get off free.”

The third round, everyone passed their three dump cards to the player across from them. The fourth round, they kept the cards they were dealt. It was well underway when Tyler played the page of swords. Ian followed with the knight of cups. Mike played the king of swords. Gabe smiled a sick, slick smile as he laid down his card, the eight of swords.

“Well, well… I guess we all know who’s got the drow,” he said.

What?” I asked, indignantly.

“It’s, uh, a nickname for the queen of swords,” Ian said.

“Ty’s been hunting the black bitch,” Gabe went on. “Mason doesn’t have any swords, and Mike obviously knows I don’t have her, so…”

“Do you guys realize that word is…” I started to ask.

“Mackenzie, let it go,” Ian said.

“Yeah, fuck you, anyway,” Mike said to Gabe, dropping the three of cups.

“Wait, hold on,” I said. “That’s a seriously offensive term.”

“Offensive to who?” Gabe asked. “Dark elves?”

“Uh, yeah,” I said.

“Well, I don’t see any around here,” Gabe said, looking around in exaggerated fashion.

“Be careful, Gabe,” Mike said, smiling. “They are pretty good at hiding in shadows.”

“Look, it’s just a term in a card game,” Ian said to me. “Just because somebody uses it doesn’t mean they’re actually racist. Anyway, racism’s bad and all but you have to kind of pick your battles. I mean… dark elves aren’t exactly… you know…”

“No, I don’t know,” I said. “And don’t forget that you just had dinner with one the other night.”

“Hey, now, let’s be fair here,” Gabe said. “Of course the demon’s going to take up for dark elves.”

“I am only half demon,” I said. “And that’s got nothing to do with it.”

“Sure it does,” Gabe said, in mock sympathetic tones. “Dark elves aren’t evil, they’re just misunderstood… just like the poor widdle demons.”

“I never said demons were misunderstood,” I said, frustrated to the point of anger and angry almost to the point of tears. Of course demons were evil… I knew that better than most… but that had nothing to do with any prejudice against normal races. “If you knew the things that I did…”

“What?” Gabe asked. “What did you do?”

“Leave off,” Ian said. “It’s not anybody’s business.”

“No, I want to know what she did that’s soooo ‘eeeeevyll’,” Gabe said. “Did you strangle a puppy? Rape a baby with that knife? What?”

Hey!” I said, horrified.

“Not cool,” Mike said.

Gabe just laughed.

“Evil,” he said, shaking his head.

“Look, how about this?” Tyler said to me. “We’ll stop calling the queen the ‘d-word’, and you drop the act.”

“What act?” I asked.

“I know you think it’s funny or cool or whatever to pretend you’re something you’re not, but demons aren’t cool,” Tyler said. “They’re evil and scary.”

“I know!” I said. “I agree! That’s what I keep telling people. I’m evil. I have to be caref…”

“Alright, I’ve had just about enough of this,” Tyler said. “Look, if you’re a demon, why doesn’t it hurt you when I do this?”

Tyler might have drunk and gambled, but he had enough piety in him to pull off a proper warding sign… I didn’t just feel the effect, I saw it as an eruption of light which seared my eyes as it bowled me over.

“What, you think that’s funny?” Tyler asked as I screamed and futilely covered my eyes. He’d leapt to his feet and was standing over me now. His voice didn’t sound quite as certain. In fact, despite the fact that I was the one curled up on the floor, he sounded like he was close to panic.

I couldn’t see, but I felt another wave hit me as he made the Arms at me again from even closer range. I screamed and writhed on the floor.

“The beer!” Gabe yelled, as I apparently knocked over somebody’s can.

“Make her stop it,” Tyler said, x-ing his fingers on and off like he was flashing a code, each repetition slamming into me like a rain of burning daggers. His conviction grew with his fear, making each successive sign even more painful. “Make her knock it off.”

“She isn’t faking, you moron!” Ian yelled.

“Make her stop!” Tyler shrieked, and I felt the white-hot pressure driving into me as he maintained the symbol and pushed in closer to me. I felt like I was trapped, skewered and pinned to the ground.

“Stop it!” Ian yelled, and then there was the sound of flesh pounding on flesh. The horrible waves of awful, scorching holy light stopped. “Fucking stop it!”

“Calm down!” Mike said. “Both of you.”

“She was kidding,” Tyler said. He was panting as if winded… or hyperventilating. “It was a joke. A dumb joke.”

“No, it wasn’t,” Mike said. “Dumbass.”

“No, but… she was kidding,” Tyler repeated.

“She spilled beer on the cards,” Gabe said.

“Shut up!” at least two voices replied.

“Hey… hey, are you okay?” Mike asked.

I felt something touch or prod me on the shoulder. It could have been a finger or a foot. Only the barest sensation of pressure could make it through the pain.

I couldn’t move, couldn’t even see through a white filmy haze which covered the world. I would have bet anything that Tyler was a divinity student. If he wasn’t, it was at least as big a waste of talent as Ian not being a music major.

I couldn’t move, and a very small part of me was glad for that because a very large part of me was screaming that I should be getting up, lashing out, and killing the mewling, frightened thing that had been hurting me… biting and tearing and feeding

Whether it was because my body knew that feeding would relieve the pain, or because the holy sign angered the worst, darkest part of me, or simply because I hadn’t actually fed enough earlier, I was hungry again… and fortunately or unfortunately, was in no position to do anything about it.

“Here, help me get her up,” Ian said.

Ian, who looked so delicious without his shirt… Ian, who was probably virgin enough to gorge on.

Don’t, I thought, begging my lips to form the words. Please don’t.

Ian was as good a mind reader as ever, though, and with somebody’s–probably Mike’s–help, he started picking me up off the floor.

The world revolved around me in a painfully bright spiral, and my head lolled. I smelled skin and sweat and lunged, but it was a weak effort. I growled.

“Oh, shit,” Mike’s voice said as I gnashed my teeth and bit blindly. “Look at her face.”

“That’s fucking cool,” Gabe said.

“Quit gawking and help me hold her,” Ian said, and I felt a hand grabbing my hair.

Don’t grab me, drop me, I tried to say. I couldn’t stand, but I was bound to hurt somebody thrashing and snapping around. Drop me and kick me, stomp on me until I stop moving, until I’m not a threat… stop me…

I whimpered.

“Oh shit, is she getting turned on?” somebody asked from across the room as two people fought to control me. “She is… she’s fuckin’ into this.”

Was I turned on? I think I was. Whether I tore the warm, fleshy things which struggled with me or let myself be pounded into the ground, it was a sort of pleasingly arousing scenario, either way.

It was an extremely arousing scenario. There were… what… three men in the room? At least one would be left to fuck, any which way that things ended.

That thought gave me a burst of strength which I used to wrench myself free of my captors… only to stumble blindly into some kind of obstruction and end up entangled in a big soft binding mass of cloth which smelled like night sweat and semen.

“Are you a virgin?” somebody shouted. “Ty, are you?”


“You said you wouldn’t do it unless it was serious. Are you a virgin?


“Are you?”


“Give me your arm.”

“What are you doing?”

I snarled and bit at the blankets, falling down on the hard, cold floor and pulling them on top of me. They were covered in the sweet sour stink of humanity, and I knew that a virgin had spent many frustrated nights enmeshed in them. I howled my frustration at being able to taste and scent what I needed, but not being able to feed.

Then I felt something hot and sweet dripping down over my face, onto my lips… into my mouth… and the pain subsided.

My head cleared, my vision began to return, and I found myself lying on my back, looking up into the horrified face of Tyler, his arm dripping blood down on me… and into the unreadable but resolute face of Ian.

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5 Responses to “127: Cups In Athanasia”

  1. pedestrian says:

    I would of suggested finding Gloria but Tyler will do for now. It is a good thing, yes a good thing, for Mackenzie that MU has a divinity program. Useful, apply as needed.

    I betcha this jolly little incident will encourage Tyler to get himself laid as fast as his little legs can run. “Take away the boy, and return with a man.”

    And if Our Mack is still feeling peckish, Gabe would be fun to tear apart and consume.

    Current score: 0
    • Erm says:

      There’s no way Gabe is still on the menu, though. Unless illusions and nymphs don’t count, but I’d think at least the latter would.

      Current score: 1
      • Psi-Ko says:

        Well, the illusions wouldn’t count, I imagine them being only a slight rank above his right hand. And he only said he’d Fucked Amy’s tits, which if we’re going by standards of “pure virgin” or whatever, doesn’t count.

        As far as I can tell, it takes full on regular Guy-girl vanilla sex to take you off Mack’s menu.

        Current score: 2
  2. Lunchbox says:

    Sex with a nymph totally wouldn’t take someone off of Mack’s menu.
    Remember how Barley started screaming about her mother? It seems like Momma Khaele has forsaken her daughter.

    Current score: 7
    • Rook says:

      I think it’d be more accurate to say that Barley has forsaken Khaele.

      Current score: 8