The Witches of Eriadne:
Double, Double - Part 2: Introductions

by The Space Witches

{Chapter 1} {Chapter 2} {Chapter 3} {Chapter 4} {Chapter 5}

Captain Matthew Gideon on the bridge of the Excalibur
Captain Matthew Gideon on the bridge of the Excalibur (in the "bellhop" uniform *g*)
Detail of a pic taken from TNT's official Crusade site

Chapter 5

Ilas and Max were still lying beneath the fruit tree in the orchard when the sun sank beneath the horizon. They watched the sky change from flamboyant colors to more subdued, but nonetheless spectacular tones. Suddenly Ilas, who was snuggled tightly against Max, lifted her head. "Let's go back," she said and stood, holding out her hands for him to get up. Max took them and tugged, trying to unbalance her, but she just stood there grinning. He flashed a smile at her and got up. They slowly walked towards the castle, Ilas in the lead.

Max studied the trees of the orchard when Ilas ran a bit off to the side, then turned and looked at him, eyes sparkling. He just wanted to make a sarcastic comment when she grinned and ran further off, looking over her shoulder, as if daring him to follow. [A man my age really shouldn't exercising anymore,] he thought and went after her in a light jog. Despite his inner griping, Max was surprised at how easy the jog was.

She led him through the woods, running effortlessly, stopping at intervals to see if he could keep up. At one point he lost sight of her and stopped, panting lightly, looking around but unable to see her.

"Pssst," he heard a voice to his left, and saw Ilas peek around a tree's trunk. "It isn't far now," she whispered and off she was again.

Max shook his head and followed, a bit slower than before. After a few seconds he suddenly stood in a clearing, open to one side, surrounded by trees on the other. And to his right was a small pool. [Including a waterfall, and conveniently placed stone plates so you can sit on them and dangle your feet into the water! Did some kind of Vorlon holiday resort architect design this place?]

Ilas was already standing at the water's edge, stripping off her clothes, then launched herself in with a racing dive and appeared a few seconds later in the middle of the pool. She pushed her hair back and turned around in the water. "What are you waiting for? The water is wonderful!"

Max grimaced. "No, thanks. I don't like water."

Ilas looked at him incredulously, then frowned as she saw Max's uneasy expression. "You can't swim?"

Max shrugged, looking off to the side. "We didn't have much water on Mars."

Ilas couldn't help but smile at his obvious embarrassment. She swam back to the shore and got out of the water, leaving a trail of puddles after her. She stepped close to Max and took his hands, then stepped backwards, pulling him with her. "I'll show you."

Max resisted. "I'm not interested in learning..."

Ilas stood on tiptoe and kissed him softly. "Trust me." She smiled at him warmly as she slid his jacket off his shoulders and let it fall to the ground, then opened the buttons of his shirt. One by one, she stripped him of each item of clothing, until he stood naked. Ilas could tell he was nervous as she took his hands. "Come. It isn't hard. Even a linguist can learn this."

Max shot her a warning look, his feet following her automatically as she pulled him to the water's edge and stepped into the now seemingly dark liquid, letting go of his hands. He sat down at the edge before carefully seeking the ground with his feet, then stood slowly, as if afraid he could sink in. Ilas took some steps back, beckoning him to follow. "Come on. As long as I can stand without disappearing, you can too."

Max slowly followed her, triple-checking every bit of ground he put his feet on. "How do I know you’re not making your legs longer?" he asked warily.

"You don’t." Ilas could barely keep from grinning. "Come on Max," she said gently. "Trust me."

Max gave her a doubtful look, but slid forward in the water, sand tickling the tops of his feet as he shuffled along the bottom.

Ilas’s mind went back to the times she had come here with Lily and some Brakiri women to teach their children how to swim. They'd had to watch out for that bunch every second, as they sure didn't have the reluctance Max showed towards water! "Now just two more steps, so your shoulders are underwater too," she instructed him.

He threw her an uneasy look but complied and stepped past her until only his neck and head emerged from the water.

"Okay... now let's start with the arms..." Ilas showed him how to move them, and of course he managed to copy her movements perfectly in no time. "See? I told you even linguists can learn this," she told him with a wink. "Now next stage... legs." She pushed herself off the ground and swam around him in a circle, while he watched her kick her legs, then stood again. "Now for this, I'll have to hold you." Max wanted to protest, but she interrupted him. "This isn't the first time - or did you really think I called a guard to carry you from the dungeon to my room during your last visit?"

Max threw her a resigned look. "For a shape shifter you're way too stubborn!"

"Well, my body changes so much, my mind has to be constant." She grinned and held out her arms, which had grown more muscular in the meantime. Max sighed, then gasped as she suddenly picked him off his feet and held him in her arms, backside up, just below the water's surface; instinctively he held his head up. Despite the first shock he found himself being held tightly, and relaxed a tiny bit. But his pride wouldn't let him hold his tongue. "Don't do that to an old man! One of these days you’ll give me a heart attack!"

Ilas ignored him, grinning, and said, "Now move your legs the way I did."

After throwing her another punishing sideways look he resigned and started kicking his legs as she had shown him, again copying her with ease. When she told him how to coordinate the arm and leg movements, he struggled at first, but once he got the concept, did it exactly right. Ilas moved along the pool's more shallow parts with him, matching her steps to his tempo. She marveled at the concentrated look on his face. [Max, the perfectionist!] She gradually drew her arms away from under him, until he was swimming all by himself.

"Hey, Max," he heard Ilas' voice, and turned his head to look up at her standing beside him... with her arms folded in front of her chest! For a moment Max panicked and almost went down, but his arms and legs automatically began working again, and he finally managed to put his legs down on firm ground. "What the hell do you think --" He stopped, and felt a smile spread on his face. "I did it! I was swimming!"

Ilas nodded proudly. "All by yourself."

Max laughed and drew her into his arms, kissing her, and feeling his body react immediately. He broke free of her mouth and looked at her, a wry smile on his lips. "I guess further training will have to wait."

They spent the whole night at the pool, swimming and making love. Those rocks were good for more than sunning and dangling your feet. They went back to the castle at dawn, tired but happy, and fell asleep as soon as they were tucked into Ilas' bed.

Lily didn't notice time pass. Part of her heard John and Luke's whispers, and knew that she was scaring them with her behavior, but she was unable to change it. What she'd seen [Get out of my head!] had been too horrible... she had to find a place somewhere deep inside her, to bury it, deep and dark enough that she wouldn't risk seeing it again. [The future isn't written in stone, I was told, but are the snippets of it that I see? Please, don't let it be... I'd rather die myself than lose...] A pang of pain flashed through her when she remembered her vision, and her arm muscles jerked, causing her to cut the fingertips of her right hand on the harp's strings. She gasped.

Luke and John looked up when her music stopped, and rushed over to her when they saw her fingers bleeding. Luke examined her wounds quickly, then kissed her fingertips. "It's not as bad as the bleeding would have us believe." Before he could ask her if she had some kind of disinfectant around, tears started streaming down Lily's face, more and more until her whole body was shaking from her sobs.

Both men held her, trying to reassure her with comforting words and soft kisses. Soon they found themselves lying amidst the hides and cushions in her lounging pit, skin to skin, exploring each other’s bodies anew. Lily had never felt so cherished before. Her eyes were closed; she didn't know whose lips were kissing her, whose hands were caressing her breast, whose shaft entered her. She was reduced to feeling, hearing, smelling, tasting, and all those senses seemed heightened. Their touches on her skin were infinitely soft and gentle; they did all for her, for her pleasure. Hours seemed to pass like this, and when she finally came, it was incredible, a long, shallow, almost endless wave passing through her body, much gentler and yet more intense than any orgasm she'd ever experienced before.

It was still dark when she woke up. She found herself lying in her lounging pit, John's and Luke's arms lying around her protectively. She smiled warmly at Luke on her left, then at John on her right -- and felt her heart miss a beat when the memory of her sight came back. [I won't let this sight terrorize me. The future isn’t set in stone... what has to happen will happen... but I swear I will do whatever I must to prevent the worst.]

She could feel her anguish dissolve gradually, and fell asleep again.

Luke was awakened by someone kissing him on his mouth. While his head was still half asleep, his body took over and responded to the soft touch. When the lips retreated, he opened his eyes and looked into Lily's. "Good morning," she murmured, smiling.

He smiled up at her. "Good morning indeed." He watched Lily turn around and give Matheson his good morning kiss.

"Mmmhhh... Morning," he said when he was awake. "Would you mind doing this for the rest of my life?" Lily chuckled, and Luke leaned his chin on her shoulder, his arm loosely around her waist.

"Poor Dr. Chambers would have to constantly treat you for exhaustion, I fear." Matheson flashed a lopsided grin and moved a lock of hair out of Lily's face.

"I fear you're right, Doctor."

Lily smiled and sat up, her breasts covered by her red curls, arranged a few cushions on the steps that led to the main floor and leaned back, inviting her two lovers to snuggle up against her, which they did. "I want you two to promise me something." She could feel both men's eyes on her when she continued, "I want you to promise me that you will always fight death, be it your own or the other's, if it isn't caused by nature." Both stared at her now, but she refused to look at them. "Promise!" Although she held her voice low, her tone didn't leave room for argument.

John nodded slowly, instinctively sensing that this had some connection to her vision. "I promise."

Luke was struggling to find his voice; her behavior gave him the creeps. "I promise," he finally uttered.

Lily closed her eyes, letting out a breath she hadn't realized she'd held. "Good. Now I can be calm." She kissed the top of their heads, feeling peace and calm flow through her. [I have done everything I could. Now it's in the hands of the Goddess.] That reminded her... "Get dressed, I want to show you something!"

They had followed Lily through corridors and down staircases, holding her hands, and finally ended up in front of a large wooden door, elaborately carved. Lily opened it and let them enter, then followed and carefully closed the door behind her. They found themselves in a big hall, decorated with tapestries and paintings of vivid, warm colors, but abstract content. Plants were everywhere; one was hanging from an earthen pot high up in a corner, almost touching the floor. Directly opposite the door, on a platform that could be reached by walking up two steps, four chairs stood, almost like thrones. All were made of the same wood, but each of them looked different. One had only a rough finish, its seat and back covered with a sapphire blue fabric; another's back was intricately carved with flowers and vines, its seat emerald green. The seat and back of the next were covered in red. The last one looked the same, except the fabric was white.

Lily led them a bit to the side, behind a few big plants that seemed to be functioning as a partition wall. They found a big piece of half-finished tapestry lying on a low table, and despite its unfinished state they recognized the motif. Luke just stood there, speechless. "But - that's impossible!" John stammered, indicating the incredibly realistic picture of the Excalibur above Eriadne B.

Lily smiled. "Apparently not. I had a sight of it, and sent the picture to my sisters while we were working. Angel helped us coordinate our needles, as she always does." She paused and let her fingers glide over the tapestry. "It isn't finished by far." Her voice trailed off, then she continued, "But the picture is getting clearer now..." She seemed to be in a trance; Luke eyed her, still feeling slightly uncomfortable when it came to "illogical" things.

John was still staring at the tapestry. "You and your sisters are incredible!"

Lily woke from her trance and looked up, grinning delightedly. "Oh, you still don't believe I'm real, Sweet Face?" she asked in a teasing voice and slid up to him, one hand sliding under the shirt he wore loosely over his tight pants, the other closing around his neck and pulling his head down for a deep kiss.

Suddenly they heard someone clear his throat. They broke their kiss and looked at Luke, who was standing there alone, looking at them, an eyebrow raised. "Ooooh, poor Sad Eyes, feeling neglected?" Lily purred and reached out with one hand, drawing him nearer and meeting his mouth in an equally deep kiss. Luke felt himself being drawn into the warm circle of their embrace, and closed his own arms around Lily and John. He had never felt as whole as in this moment.

"We have to share... truly share," Lily whispered. Both men knew what she meant, and their consent was sealed with a kiss. They sunk to the floor together, engulfed in an ocean of passion.

Angel had been working on the spell now for more than 24 hours. Her back hurt from having had little rest off her feet, her head hurt, and right now she was in a thunderous mood. So far she hadn’t had any success with getting the ingredients for the spell to work right. She had changed, added, substituted, rewritten the order of words, and each time, the ingredients that she had in her mixing bowl, had either blown up, or just disintegrated. Once she had watched in amazement as the ingredients in the bowl bubbled and a puff of smoke billowed up, causing Angel to cough and splutter. When the smoke had cleared, there sitting in the bowl, was the largest ugliest two-headed toad, she had ever seen. When she had reached out to pick it up out of the bowl, she had jumped back with a yelp of surprise. The ugly thing had tried to bite her. Only then did she realize that the thing had a row of sharp teeth.

"That’s it, you are out of here, Ugly" Angel had told the toad. She had quickly reached for a bottle that contained a bluish powder. Taking some out with her fingers, she had sprinkled it over the toad, which then seemed to suddenly shrink until it was gone completely. Angel brushed the remaining powder off her fingers leaned to look at the empty bowl and muttered. "And good riddance."

Angel brushed the hair out of her eyes, and looked angrily at the page in front of her.

"Dammit why won’t you work? She asked angrily. What was she doing wrong? Angel was thinking hard as she read over the latest order of words, when her head snapped up. She sensed another of Demon’s sendings. It didn’t affect her at all; she and her sisters were immune to each other’s abilities, unlike the prisoners and pets who were probably enjoying what she was feeling. But she knew what was happening. When it subsided after a moment, Angel reached down and picked up an empty glass bottle; with a scream she threw it into the fireplace where it joined several others that had been thrown there lately. She had had to deal with knowing what was happening before when Demon sent out her emotions, but never had they made her this enraged. Angel knew it was because she knew what her sister was doing and, more importantly, who she was doing it with.

Angel stood on the back of her heels, and raised her head up to the ceiling trying to rein in her anger. She had to relax and calm down. She took in a few deep breaths and pushed thoughts of her sister and Gideon out of her head with difficulty, then she turned her full attention to the task at hand.

Gideon was sitting on one of the sofas in Deborah’s living room. He wore the black robe she’d brought him the day she found him. He was leaning back in the seat with his legs spread apart. Sitting sideways across him, with her butt between his parted legs, Deborah sprawled back against the arm of the couch and his right arm that curled around her shoulders. This left his other hand free to wander.

They had found this was the best way to sit. Although Deborah didn’t have an ounce of fat on her body, she was nevertheless a big girl. If she sat in Gideon’s lap, his legs tended to go to sleep. Gideon had his head resting against the back of the sofa and his eyes shut. His free hand played with Deborah’s breast through the gap in her robe. He never tired of the feel of them, soft and warm and pliable, he could quite happily sit and play like that all day. Except he knew he had to move. He’d been in her rooms for over 40 hours now and was feeling restless. His anxiety for his crew had been growing since they’d left her bed that morning. Yesterday was different. They’d both slept after their night of passion, awakening to find that the sun was high.

Deborah had risen, going into the living room to order food for them, then moved to the bathroom to run a bath. Now that had been fun. He remembered sitting in the tub with her behind him, long legs wrapped around him, as she rubbed shampoo into his hair. The feel of her massaging his scalp was enough to arouse him again. He’d decided to return the favor and had tried to wash her hair, but there was so much of it, it kept getting away from him. He got soap in her eyes. They ended up kneeling facing each other while he tried to wipe the soap from her face. His erection got between them and he entered her while they knelt there. By the time they were done the bath water was cold, but it didn’t really matter. Most of it was on the bathroom floor anyway.

They’d passed the day talking and making love. They reached the point where they were in a permanent state of arousal and the slightest touch would set them off. He’d lost count of the times he’d taken her. When they finally returned to her bed, they’d both slept deeply. Both had awoken this morning feeling fresh and alert. Within moments of waking he had been deep inside her again. He thought of his mornings aboard the Excalibur, where he always woke alone, and his only possibility of sex was to jerk off in the sonic shower. Senior officers did not fraternize with junior officers or enlisted personnel. For the last year, his only sexual experiences had been two frustrating visits to B5 when Liz Lochley had been too busy to spend more than a few moments with him. On both occasions, a quick fuck in her office was not what he’d been looking for. He’d left the last time deciding it wasn’t working; it was over.

And now he’d had more sex in 48 hours than he’d had in the previous 10 years put together. That damned box had been right. Much danger, much pain, much pleasure. Well, maybe not that much pain. He still had some fond memories of his bout with the little red-assed bitch, Angel. He wouldn’t mind a re-run one day, but preferably on his terms this time.

He pondered the differences between the two sisters, and arrived at a conclusion. Deborah was like a Siamese cat -- sleek, beautiful and intelligent. If she chose, she would gift you with her attention and could be very affectionate. And she liked to have her tummy tickled. He smiled at the memory that brought to mind. But she could still claw you if you handled her wrong.

Angel was a cat of a different color. Black. A panther prowling her territory, looking for victims. There was little about her that could be described as domesticated. ‘She walked in beauty, like the night of cloudless skies and starry climes….’ And when she pounced, well, her victims had just better accept what was going to happen to them. He could never imagine Angel stretched on her back letting him tickle her belly! But that element of danger just added to her attraction.

He thought about all he’d learned from Deborah the previous day, how she and Angel had grown up not knowing each other, and after they had finally met, their abduction by the Vorlon and the experiments that had been carried out on them. Vorlon! Like most people he’d heard of them but didn’t know much beyond the fact that they were very old, very powerful, and that John Sheridan (his hero) had somehow persuaded them to leave the galaxy. This had all happened to them some time ago, but Deborah was vague on when. But it was before the Vorlon had left. She and Angel had found themselves with Ilas and Lilith, and the Vorlon had then played with their minds. Given them the powers, some of which he’d seen when he first arrived. Deborah was a sending and receiving empath, Angel a telekinetic (well, he’d worked that one out for himself), Lilith could sometimes see the future (that one blew his mind) and could block a telepath. Ilas was a shape-shifter. Whether this was native to her species or if the Vorlon had done it to her they didn’t know.

They did know that they’d been designed as a unit, to link together for mutual defense and attack. But the Vorlon had found the women too independent. So they’d been dumped into stasis. Again, Deborah had no idea how long they’d been in their tubes. But when the Brakiri colonists had found them and awakened them, they had taken over. This was what he had a real problem with. Had they been forced to take over? Deborah insisted they’d had no choice, but wouldn’t tell him why. Well, put that aside for the moment. They’d found that the Vorlon had left them a lot of high-tech equipment, some of which they’d used to create a comfortable life for themselves on this planet. He had himself benefited from that technology when Deborah had healed him after Angel’s ministrations on the first day.

"You’ll wear it out if you keep playing with it like that." Deborah’s soft, deep voice breathed into his ear. He became aware that he had been circling her nipple with his thumb, palpitating with his fingers, enjoying the feel of her full, heavy breast in his hand.

"Well, maybe I’d better give the other side some attention. Equal opportunity and all that." He moved his hand to her other breast and started the same circling, squeezing motion. She leaned her head back against the high arm of the sofa and closed her eyes, savoring the sensation. Her mouth fell open, which just gave him the excuse he needed to kiss her again. Not that he needed much excuse.

She hadn’t done all the talking the previous day. She’d listened while he told her about the Drakh attack on Earth, the destruction of the planet killer and the seeding of the plague. He’d paced the floor angrily while he talked, still frustrated that he hadn’t been there for that fight. Not that his Explorer class ship would have been able to do much.

He told of the five-year death sentence that all life on Earth was under, and his ship’s role in the search for the cure. And how two years had passed with nothing found. How every day thousands more people died, and how he felt responsible for every death, because of his failure to find the answer. He’d looked at her then and saw the tears streaming down her face. He thought at first that she was crying for the lives lost on Earth. Then, as a wave of compassion escaped her and rolled over him, Gideon realised she was crying for him and the burden of guilt he carried. He’d rushed to her and held her tightly, wiping her tears away with his fingers, kissing her gently, which inevitably led them back to her bed.

Angel stood back and looked with satisfaction at the piece of paper she held in her hand, then to the bowl where ingredients smoked gently. A fragrance of lavender and rose filled the room.

Angel giggled, then started to spin around the room clapping her hands. "I did it. I did it." She repeated over and over with glee.

She stopped spinning, and walked over to the bowl. She placed the piece of paper that contained the spell down beside the bowl, and she bent down taking in a deep breath, savoring the sweet perfumed smoke. It didn’t have the last remaining ingredient in it, but that could only be added once she had made love to Gideon and recited the mantra.

She stood up straight. Thinking about the last ingredient, she realized that it would take a lot out of her to be repeating the spell and concentrating on getting the last ingredient into the bowl, to set the spell in motion. To move it when she was all the way across at the end of the castle. Angel scrunched up her face

"I’ll manage. It is amazing what one can accomplish when inspired," she said with confidence as she picked up the piece of paper again. Her eyes read over the words, written in an ancient language. She read it out saying the words in English.

"O ancient powers of time and space, bring forth the one inside him. Bind him to me in love. To me alone he will come. All others he shall spite." Angel frowned slightly; translated into English it didn’t sound right. But then that didn’t matter; the ancient language it was written in wasn’t easy to translate into her natural language. She looked over the words once more, then went over to her Grimoire where she placed the spell in between two pages. She would write it into her book later. Right now she had to prepare new ingredients and then she had to see if she could get to Gideon.

As she cleaned the bowl and started mixing, Angel tried to decide what she would do about getting to Gideon. She suspected that he was still with Demon in her rooms. That could prove to be a problem. She needed to get Gideon alone long enough to do what she needed to do. Angel paused at her mixing as she thought about her predicament. Well she knew that she would have to go to Demon’s rooms and wait for Demon to take him back to his cell. Angel hoped that would happen. She had more of a chance of not being interrupted there. But considering how long Demon had had Gideon with her that seemed unlikely unless something unexpected came up. Suddenly Angel began to smile, Demon would probably have to leave her rooms at some point to go and check on the other prisoners. It was likely that she would just lock him in her rooms. [Probably in the hope that I don’t find him,] thought Angel bitterly. But if that did happen, he would at least be alone. Angel knew that she would be taking one hell of a risk sneaking into her sister’s room to do what she planned. If her sister came back and caught her in the act there would be hell to pay. Besides that, Angel didn’t want Demon to suspect her of anything. The way the spell worked, it would appear to be Gideon’s choice who he wanted to be with. She couldn’t be held accountable.

The mixing of ingredients was complete. Angel looked at the last ingredient and placed it near the bowl on top of a book -- that way she wouldn’t have to move it too far to get it to drop in with the rest of the ingredients. And once it was joined with the others, it would take only an hour for it to work its magic.

"Then he’ll be mine," whispered Angel.

Satisfied that everything was set, Angel walked through to her bedroom. She had a long hot bath, much needed after the long sweaty hours working on the spell. Then she dressed, taking time before she went to Demon’s quarters to grab a red fruit that looked similar to an apple. She had forgotten to eat while busy and she was feeling hungry. As she left her room she bit into the flesh of the fruit and enjoyed its sweet taste. By the time she came to Demon’s quarters she had finished it.

Angel looked at the door of Demon’s rooms and heard laughter. She scowled and resisted the urge to knock and interrupt whatever fun they where obviously having inside. Instead she moved past the door, to where the passageway turned to the right. From there she had a good view of the door and would be able to see if her sister came out. It would also allow her to hide behind the wall when Demon did come out. She didn’t have to worry about Demon having to come in this direction to go anywhere else, so at least she needn’t be concerned about explaining what she was doing coming from that direction. Or what she was doing there if she was by some small chance, seen by her sister. Angel looked around the corner again at the door.

"Now all I can do is wait."

Demon lay in his arms on the sofa wondering what to do. She could sense his anxiety and growing restlessness, but hadn’t decided on a course of action. If it were just herself she wouldn’t hesitate. Everything in her wanted to trust this man completely. But it wasn’t just her life that was involved. Her sisters would be affected by her actions and it wouldn’t be fair to make irreversible decisions without consulting them. She could tell them his story about Earth and see if they were willing to help him, as she was. She’d just arrived at this conclusion when the low tone emitted by her communication console sounded. She’d spoken to the Brakiri guard captain several times during the last 40 hours, ensuring that their prisoners were secure and being taken care of. He’d assured her that everything was under control and she had left orders not to be disturbed unless there was an emergency. So the low tone was ominous. Something must be wrong.

She pulled herself up from Gideon’s lap and walked to the monitor in the corner of her living room.

"Yes." Her mask was back in place.

"We have a problem. The woman Dureena has escaped."

Demon felt a surge of triumph from Gideon who stood behind her. She was devastated. How could he feel like that when she was so close to giving him everything he wanted? Was he so desperate to get away from her? She had felt his anxiety and restlessness, but not being a telepath, could only guess at the cause.

She kept her face turned to the monitor and spoke. "Organize a search party. I’ll be with you in 15 minutes. It won’t take me long to sense where she’s hidden." She turned back to Gideon, every emotion locked in total control, her face completely impassive.

"Please get dressed, Captain. I can’t leave you here while we conduct the search." She went to a drawer and pulled out his uniform pants and red T-shirt; his boots and underwear followed. She’d had them taken from the cell where Angel had left him, laundered and brought to her rooms. She placed them in his arms, turned and walked into her bedroom to dress herself. It was taking every bit of control she possessed not to break down into hysterical tears. She locked herself under control, blocking out everything around her. She’d lost him.

He knew something was terribly wrong when Deborah had turned back to him with that mask of control firmly back in place. The woman he’d spent the last 40 hours making love to had gone completely. The ice maiden was back. Why? Then he realised what had happened. When he’d heard that Dureena had escaped he couldn’t help but feel triumphant, [Go Dureena!] and of course, she’d felt it immediately. Everything he’d built with her in the last day and a half disappeared in an instant. They were jailer and prisoner again.

When she passed him his clothes and called him "Captain," he was stunned. He felt remorse for his uncontrolled flash of emotion but she ignored him and walked into her room to dress. He dressed quickly.

She returned in skin-tight black leather jacket and pants. He looked appreciatively at the curves that were so clearly displayed, but her hand on his arm drew his attention back to her face. That damned mask was still in place. Her hand clamped down harder onto his arm.

"Please come with me." Icily polite. Not good.

"Deborah, I’m sorry," he trailed off as she ignored him completely, steering him out of the door, where two Brakiri guards awaited them. No chance of making a break for it then.

They escorted him down the hallway back to the cell where Deborah had found him. [Shit, not this place again!] His only comfort was that she would hardly have told him to dress if she planned to put him back as she’d found him.

She dismissed the guards and entered the cell with him. Closing the door behind her she pointed to the wall on the far side of the room. Chains hung from the walls with wrist irons attached.

"Oh, come on now, that’s hardly necessary."

"I can’t trust you not to try to escape. You’re a dangerous man Captain. I can’t take risks with my sisters’ lives"

Should he try to fight her? He thought about the two Brakiri outside and realised there was little point. He allowed her to place the manacles on his wrists. "Look Deborah…"

She cut him off. "My name is Demon." She turned and left the room, closing the door behind her. He heard the key turn in the lock. Now he’d really blown it.

Angel ducked into the shadows, when she heard the door to Gideon’s cell opening. She narrowed her eyes as she watched Demon exit. Angel smiled when she saw the unhappy expression on Demon’s face. Angel had waited outside Demon’s rooms for ages after she had finished work on the spell. She had felt her sister’s sendings, and she had almost gone crazy with anger. She had waited, hoping that Demon would leave at some time to go check on the other prisoners. When Demon left, she would go inside to Gideon. As she waited outside, she knew that doing so was taking a risk, that Demon could return at any time and stop her. But she had to risk it.

Angel had almost jumped for joy when Demon had come out of the room with Gideon. Obviously something had happened over the last 40 hours. Angel hoped Gideon had rejected her. From the look on her sister’s face, that could very well be it. In the back of her mind Angel knew she shouldn’t feel pleasure at her sister’s expense, but Gideon was hers and she’d been fuming that her sister dared to take him from her. Angel pushed herself further into her hiding spot, not wanting Demon to see her. [She’ll know what I’m planning if she sees me,] Angel thought as she watched Demon lock the heavy door and turn to leave.

When she was sure that Demon was gone, Angel detached herself from the shadows and approached the door. Taking out an identical key to the one Demon had, she slipped it into the lock. She muttered in annoyance when she had difficulty turning the key. Putting her mind behind it, Angel twisted the key and smiled when she heard the lock move. Casting a quick glance around, Angel pushed open the door and soundlessly slipped inside.

Gideon heard a noise at the door. He shifted where Deb… Demon had shackled him in a standing position. Gideon felt the heat rising in his blood when he thought about what had just happened. Well at least she had left him clothed, not like the raven-haired one, who had taken his clothes and told him in a husky voice, "I prefer you like this, no obstacles when I come back." Her piercing blue eyes had then raked over every inch of his body.

His thoughts were interrupted when he heard a key being turned in the lock. He didn’t know whether to be relieved or concerned when he saw Angel enter. Whether concerned or relieved, Gideon couldn’t help but appreciate the view. She might be trouble but in this case trouble came in a damned attractive package. With that long raven hair cascading down her back… a striking contrast against her pale complexion. And those eyes! Those eyes where the first thing he’d noticed about her, so crystal blue they almost seemed transparent. But they were also unnerving when she looked at him, as she was doing right now. He felt that she was piercing through him and seeing right into his soul. Gideon raised his eyes to meet hers.

She was standing there, a small shaft of light playing across her face and it was her expression that concerned him. Gideon had watched the way she moved, with almost feline grace, and right now she was looking at him like the cat that was about to eat the canary. [Why do I feel that I’ve suddenly sprouted yellow feathers?] Thought Gideon as he watched her slowly approach him.

Angel watched him as he watched her move towards him. She couldn’t read his expression. She’d noticed right from the beginning that this one had a strong will. She liked that -- and it was more fun when they fought back. She smiled at that thought as she came to a stop just in front of him. She continued to stare at him, taking in every inch of his face. It didn’t escape her notice that Demon had allowed him to keep his clothes on. [At least she kept him tied up.]

She was standing so close to him that Gideon could smell the faint fragrance of something, a perfume he couldn’t identify. Angel continued to watch him, never breaking eye contact and not saying a thing. It was the staring and silence that drove Gideon to open his mouth. If he’d been thinking he would have stopped himself. As he’d found out, if you spoke to her without permission, pain followed. "Didn’t your mother teach you that it’s not polite to stare?"

The words were barely out when Angel backhanded him across the face. His head was ringing and his cheek stung like hell when he turned back to look at her. And he wished for about the hundredth time since he’d found himself in this situation that his hands were free so he could dish out what he was receiving. Those dark thoughts surprised him, it wasn’t like him to ever consider, no matter what, hitting a woman. But he found himself struggling against the restraints, trying to get at her. He was stopped by her soft laughter. "Oh, poor baby, I hit you too hard"

Before he could say or do anything, Angel’s hands cupped either side of his face roughly and her lips found his. Her lips on his sent a jolt of electricity through him, as he found her tongue slipping between his lips to seek his out. He clenched his jaw and tried to resist the invasion. He might find this woman attractive but he was damned if he was going to let her do what she wanted with him again. But resistance became more difficult as she rubbed herself against his crotch, deliberately trying to arouse him. He forced his natural response to her movements down.

Then without warning Angel broke away from him, moving just out of reach. Her eyes, now slightly darkened with passion, held his. She cocked her head slightly to one side and smiled at him. Again, Gideon felt like a canary. Then her expression changed to one of indecision. "What to do, what to do?" she asked softly, Gideon realized that she wasn’t asking him... she was talking to herself again. Gideon watched in awe as she approached him again, reached up her right hand, and gently stroked his cheek. Her eyes closed as she absent-mindedly caressed him. Then she nodded and her eyes opened. "Yes, that first and then the spell."

It was the spell part that grabbed Gideon’s attention [What the hell is she talking about… spell?] But Angel didn’t give him a chance to think as she once again claimed his mouth in a bruising kiss. Angel snaked a hand through Gideon’s hair; she silently marveled at its soft, silky texture. She pulled Gideon’s head in closer, deepening the kiss. Gideon was still trying resist, but thought, [do I really want to?] She tasted so sweet… his mind tried to search for what she tasted like, and as her tongue darted into his mouth he got it [Honey, she tasted like honey]. Gideon’s body was starting to react to the closeness of her body as it rubbed up against him. He kept trying to suppress his reaction to her but it was becoming more difficult as she pressed her pelvis into his.

Angel’s free hand started to move up and down Gideon’s body. She made a sound of irritation, the shirt preventing her from feeling the soft hairs on his chest. She broke away, leaving him gasping for air. Her eyes roamed to the heavy manacles that held him and then she looked at him. He was surprised at what she said next, "I’m going to release you, but I warn you, try to escape and you will be punished." Her tone lowered on the word punished, as if she enjoyed saying it. Gideon nodded, trying to stay focused on escape. His body had started to react to her, and he was finding it harder all the time to push his reaction away.

Angel again moved in closer to Gideon. She started to kiss his throat, working her way up to the soft area just below his ear. He gasped when her teeth bit down into the soft lobe of his ear, and she tugged on it roughly. Gideon suddenly felt the manacles release their hold on his wrists… he was so busy concentrating on the sensation she was creating by nibbling on his ear, that he only vaguely realized that they seemed to open on their own accord. Released from his restraints, Gideon was able to encircle her narrow waist with his arms, pulling her close to him. He knew that he shouldn’t, but his body was now driving his behavior, overwhelming the negative messages from his mind. What happened next caught him by surprise. She was so quick, that he barely had time to register her movement as he felt himself falling to the ground.

Angel had felt his arms coming around her. Until then she’d shown restraint, but feeling his arms encircling her she couldn’t control herself any longer. She hooked her leg around him, and with a swift movement she pulled, knocking him off his feet. She fell on top of him as he hit the ground. She raised her head to look at him as she repositioned herself, straddling his hips, and she couldn’t suppress a giggle when she saw the bewildered expression on his face.

She didn’t give him time to recover as she grabbed his T-shirt in her hands and pulled her hands apart. [Oh perfect, she cut my jacket off me, and now there goes my shirt,] thought Gideon as she ripped his shirt straight down the middle. Her hungry eyes took in the view of his chest. [Gods, he is beautiful]. Angel placed her palms on his chest, letting them move over the hair that lightly covered his skin. Then she lowered her head and started to kiss him. She broke away for a brief moment. Gideon watched as with a swift movement she removed the soft brown leather top she had been wearing. Her breasts were large and firm, and he could see that her nipples were taut, proving the desire that she was feeling. Gideon made a movement to reach out and cup her breasts, but Angel’s hands shot up, grabbing his wrists and pinning his arms to the ground above his head. It still surprised him that for someone of her size she was so strong, though he knew that if he really wanted to he could break free.

In the back of his mind, he knew that now that he was no longer manacled, he should try to escape and find the others. But right now he didn’t want to. His attention came back to Angel when he felt her lips move over his hardened nipple, her hips brushing against the growing bulge in his pants. He hissed when her teeth bit into his nipple roughly. Her eyes looked up to trap his in a piercing stare, a naughty smile on her lips as she released his aching nipple. She then released her hold on his wrists; this time Gideon didn’t make any attempt to move them. He watched as she moved briefly to his feet and pulled his boots and socks off. She then moved back quickly so that she could undo the belt of his pants.

In an almost impossibly quick move, Angel removed his pants and black briefs, leaving him bare to her eyes. Gideon was still trying to figure how she had done it when she moved to stand above him. Angel stood looking down at the man her feet. She wasn’t worried that he would try to get up. She could tell he now wanted her as much as she wanted him, and nothing would make him stop her. Her eyes moved over his body, coming to rest at his large erection. Her lips parted and her tongue darted out to lick her lips. Gideon saw this and felt a thrill at the reaction he caused in her. His eyes moved from her lips to her eyes. They trapped his and he couldn’t break away, until he saw her start to remove the rest of her clothing. [God, she’s breathtaking.] Gideon let his eyes move over her, from her hungry eyes to her firm breasts. Then he moved down to her flat stomach and narrow hips, to the small intricate tattoo on the pale skin of her right hip. Finally his eyes came to rest on the V of dark curls.

Angel watched him as his eyes roamed over her body. She could feel the wetness between her legs increase as his eyes came to rest on the area between her legs. His eyes slowly moved back up to hers. When they reached hers, Angel moved, never breaking their gaze and once again straddled him. She lowered her head and claimed his lips. At first she was gentle as she felt Gideon’s tongue slip inside her mouth, but then her teeth bit down on his bottom lip. Gideon couldn’t stop the yelp of pain that escape his lips. He wished that she wouldn’t keep doing that. His lip had barely recovered from the first time she had bitten him

Angel laughed at the wounded expression on his face. She leaned in and kissed the area where she’d bitten him. Then she moved, trailing kisses over his chest, shifting so that she could kiss his hard flat stomach. Gideon sucked in his breath when he felt her breath on the head of his cock. He almost lost it when her long hair brushed against him, the sensation driving him close to the edge. She hovered over him for a moment longer. She could tell that if she continued to tease him like that, he would lose it, and she didn’t want him to come yet, not until he was deep inside her. So she changed position again, feeling his hard cock pressing against the inside of her thigh.

Gideon wished that she would take him inside her; he was barely able to maintain control over his throbbing erection. With one movement she granted him his silent wish, as she lowered herself onto him with a hard downward thrust, taking him deep inside her. Angel didn’t move as she enjoyed the sensation of having him there. Then she did begin to move, raising herself off him almost completely before she pushed down again. She threw her head back as she increased the pace, impaling herself on Gideon’s large cock. A loud moan escaped from Gideon’s lips as he felt her warm walls tighten around him. He moved to grab her hips and he met her with an upward thrust, matching her every move. Angel increased the pace, moved faster and faster, driving them both closer and closer to the final blissful edge. She let out a loud moan as with one final thrust she took them over the edge, both screaming in unison as orgasms ripped through them. Gideon came, filling her with his hot fluid, her walls convulsing around him, milking every last drop from him.

Finally, she collapsed on top of him, her breath as labored as his. She stayed there for a few minutes as she regained control of her limbs. Gideon lay there beneath her, taking in her fragrance as he stroked her silken hair. Angel could feel his hands moving over her hair and she was enjoying just lying there so much that she could almost forget what her main purpose was. But her control returned sharply and she almost knocked the wind out of Gideon as she jumped up off him. Gideon was too surprised to even try and stop her. He lay there dumbfounded as he watched her quickly get dressed. Once she was fully clothed, she turned to Gideon. "Get dressed." Her tone told him it was an order. [So much for pillow talk,] he thought. Gideon stood and grabbed his pants. He was acutely aware of her watchful eyes as he put them on.

As he got dressed he looked down at his torn shirt, and almost laughed. [Oh well, nothing I can do about it unless...] He looked up at her and indicated his torn shirt. "I don’t suppose you have a spare on hand?"

She shot him a dark look ignoring what he’d just said. Instead she moved a little distance from him. Her back to him, it was obvious that she was lost in thought. Gideon knew that this would be as good a time as any to try to escape; he could overpower her. He didn’t need to stop and think about what he was going to do next. He sprang into action, and moved with lightening speed, but just as he was upon her, Angel turned around. She gasped in surprise as she saw him. With a quick reflex, she lowered her eyes and moved him away from her. He hit the wall with a painful thud and then fell to the ground. He tested his limbs and found nothing broken, but he hurt, he hurt like hell.

He narrowed his eyes and looked at her. If he’d been able, he would have cheerfully killed her at that moment. Angel moved towards him and spoke, her voice husky with anger. "That was very stupid. Haven’t you realized that you can’t get away?" She kneeled down in front of him as she continued. "Well, enough playing. It’s time to make you mine." She stood up and moved a little way from him. "When this is done, Demon won’t ever be interested in you again. And when she realizes that it’s only me you want, then she’ll know she doesn’t stand a chance with you."

Gideon shifted painfully. He couldn’t think of anything to say. It was hard to form a response to something like that when you didn’t know what the hell the woman was talking about. Then he remembered what she had said earlier, something about a spell. A feeling of unease crept over him as he looked up at Angel. Her expression had changed. It was like stone. Her eyes opened and staring at him, Gideon realized that although she was staring at him, she wasn’t actually seeing him. She started to chant something in a language he’d never heard before; her tone was odd and sounded like it was no longer a part of her. If he hadn’t been so transfixed by her, he would have realized that if ever there was a time to get out, this was it.

Instead he just watched her and listened as she repeated the spell [What spell?] over and over again. Gideon didn’t know if it was from his being thrown against a wall or something else, but he started to feel a strange tingling sensation spread its way through his body. He was trying to figure out what it was when he heard Angel stop. Her expression and focus returned to normal as she glanced at him, a smile playing across her full lips. "Soon it will take hold, and then you’ll be mine." She blew a kiss to him and turned for the door; then hesitated and turned back around. "I would stay with you, but if I did and Demon found me here with you while the spell was working, she’d know it was me, and she’d make me stop… and we can’t have that, can we?" Gideon couldn’t reply; he was at a loss for words. Angel gave him one final look and then opened the door and disappeared. Gideon heard the key turning in the lock, once more leaving him alone in the semi-darkness.

Angel stood on the other side of the door for a moment, leaning up against it. She listened; she couldn’t hear anything. The spell would only take effect an hour after it had been cast. She smiled, and letting out a deep, satisfied sigh, she turned around and headed in the same direction that Demon had taken. She had to find her and make sure she didn’t go anywhere near the Captain, not until the spell was complete.

Angel glided outside, into the castle’s central courtyard. She hadn’t seen hide nor hair of Ilas or Lilith, but then she wasn’t surprised; they were very busy playing with their pets. Angel’s full lips curled into a satisfied grin as she thought about the session she’d just had with her Captain.

She moved to take a seat at her favorite spot beneath a beautiful Koa tree. Its large dark-green foliage provided cool shade from the hot sun.

She’d left Gideon’s cell about three quarters of an hour ago to search for Demon, and as yet she’d had no luck in locating her. This put Angel in a dangerous mood, and she’d returned to the dungeons to make sure Gideon was still there. He was, and thankfully there was no sign of Demon. Angel sat thinking about her last session with Gideon. She realized that she’d been a lot gentler with him than she had been the first time. She realized that it was because of the way Demon had come to her rooms to tell her how badly she’d hurt him. Angel let out a sigh; she’d felt bad about that, even during her fun with him. She could tell that he was enjoying what she was doing, the pleasure and the pain; she just hadn’t realized that she could be hurting him that much. But then her desire and curiosity to see what Ilas and Lilith were up to distracted her, and she’d forgotten about how she’d left him.

Then of course Demon had gone to him and tended to his injuries. It was that as much as how she had come into her rooms that had annoyed her, that and Demon’s prim little voice telling her off. As if that wasn’t enough Demon had actually told her she wanted Gideon and was basically asking Angel to let her have him. Angel remembered how, with great difficulty, she’d hidden the rage that built up inside her at Demon’s request. She smiled to herself as she recalled her words, "Of course darling, if it means that much to you, take him" and then walked out of the room, leaving Demon alone. She sniggered; she imagined she’d surprised the hell out of her big sister. Of course, when she was alone, she’d let go of the rage after sitting in front of her mirror in her bedroom brooding for a while. She’d broken the mirror into hundreds of tiny pieces, wishing that it were Demon. It was as she was staring at the shards of glass all over the floor, that the idea came to her. The binding spell, if she cast the binding spell after making love with Gideon, it would make him hers forever.

So with that plan in her head, Angel had allowed Demon to take Gideon. She knew if she bided her time, Demon would return Gideon to his cell, and then he was all hers. Angel was going over the fun she’d had with him when a movement caught her eye. Demon emerged from one of the doors into the courtyard. Angel jumped off the seat as if something had bitten her when she saw in which direction Demon was headed. Gideon.

"Demon, hold up," yelled Angel. She cringed at the note of desperation in her own voice. She had to keep Demon away from Gideon for at least another fifteen minutes. The spell would be set in place then, too late for Demon to do anything about it.

Demon turned to where Angel was quickly moving towards her. She waited for her sister to come to a halt in front of her.

‘I’ve been looking all over for you, where have you been?" Angel asked with a smile. She hoped that her sister wouldn’t see how oddly she was behaving as she moved to block Demon’s path to the dungeon doors.

"We’ve had a bit of a problem. I’ve been fixing it." Demon eyed her sister closely. [Was it her imagination or was her sister acting a little oddly?]. She then asked her sister something.

Angel was so busy thinking of how she could keep Demon from going inside without raising her suspicions that she didn’t hear Demon asking her a question. Only when Demon placed a hand on her arm did she focus back on her, and hear her repeating. "Why where you looking for me? Was there something you wanted?"

"Ah…" Angel searched for something that would sound feasible. " Yes, I wanted to see if you wanted to have lunch with me." Angel continued in a rush at the skeptical expression on Demon’s face "We haven’t done that in ages. I know we don’t get along most of the time, but I was thinking that maybe, despite that, we could just eat and talk."

Demon looked at her sister. Angel hated the expression on her face, the one that always made her feel like a little girl. Her darker thoughts had her imagining knocking Demon on her ass and telling her exactly what she thought about Demon trying to steal Gideon away from her. "Talk and eat?" Demon asked in a questioning tone.

It took a lot for Angel to continue with the innocent pose. She nodded. "Yes. Come on, Demon, we are sisters and, besides, even I get tired of fighting all the time."

Angel watched as Demon chewed on that for a moment. She almost let out a whoop of joy when Demon spoke, "You know what? You’re right. And I’m actually famished. I guess what I was going to do can wait until after I’ve eaten. Let’s go to my rooms."

"Great," said Angel with more delight than the situation merited. Angel put her arm through her sister’s leather clad one, and almost pulling her, led her away from the dungeon entrance.

Demon had the sudden feeling that her sister was up to something. But when Angel looked at her and smiled she decided she’d imagined it. She knew her sister better than anyone and she decided that the smile was just a happy one, nothing more.

Just before they walked through the side door towards Demon’s rooms. Angel looked skywards. The sun told her that in approximately ten minutes the spell would be set. She smiled, looking very much like the cat that ate the canary.

Gideon was now standing, trying to work his stiff aching back muscles into feeling better. He groaned out aloud at the pain the movement caused. He hoped that Deborah would return soon with that cylinder. It wasn’t that he didn’t enjoy Angel; he did. She was rough, but he had to admit that it turned him on, albeit reluctantly. What surprised him was the fact that he wished he could hurt her back as much as she hurt him. Gideon moved slowly to the door. He knew it was pointless to test to see if it was unlocked, but he did it anyway. Of course locked. He turned, the movement causing his aching back to scream in protest.

Well, he had to admit that at least this time she hadn’t been as rough and demanding as the previous time. Gideon was busy thinking about it when suddenly the tingling feeling he’d felt when Angel was casting her spell, returned. He was trying to figure out what could be causing it, when suddenly a blinding, intense pain tore through his entire body. He dropped to the ground like a sack of potatoes.

The pain was like nothing he had ever experienced before. He thrashed on the ground as the pain intensified. It was so bad, that he couldn’t even scream; the only sound that came out of him was a whimper. His body felt like he was being burned from the inside out. He could feel himself falling into darkness as the pain swallowed him whole. The only thought he had as he fell into unconsciousness was [She’s killed me].

{Chapter 1} {Chapter 2} {Chapter 3} {Chapter 4} {Chapter 5}

The Witches of Eriadne: Double, Double

{Part 1: Arrival} {Part 2: Introductions} {Part 3: Changing Partners} {Part 4: Moving Forward} {Part 5: Departure}

{The Main Gate} {HomePage} {Wytches World} {We are Family} {A Little Artistic Licence} {No, we don't mean "A"riadne} {Our Home Is Our Castle} {The Witches' Diary} {Witches Familiars} {The Gateway} {Webrings]