Part 4: The Interloper, The Alchemist's Illusions

Chapter 31: Pretty Little Thing

Wyn had offered to torch both Tanyth and Grun with fireballs, and Linza had the uneasy feeling that Wyn actually would if Linza asked her to. Linza, of course, declined. But the genuine promise of violence was a token of affection from Wyn, and Linza once again thanked the stars for her friend.

The rest of the week was manageable, and Linza was able to focus on both her day job and her night job without too much further trouble. Her conversations with Tanyth still made her a bit queasy, and she manufactured excuses to dodge a couple of their conversations, but overall, it was alright.

Tanyth was clearly enamored with Grun, though Grun did not seem to reciprocate their flirtations.

Wonder what that’s like, Linza had snipped to herself.

“How frustrating!” she had said. If only Tanyth had known the irony.

Linza had been looking forward to the weekend, not so much for the lack of work as for the distraction of it. She was off the second day, and she and Wyn had planned a proper girl’s day.

Her shift had been mostly regulars since new guests didn’t tend to book a weekend midday. She was coming up on a slot that had cancelled last minute. In those cases, other staff were welcome to come take the slot. Otherwise, it would be a free break for her.

It was two minutes past the start of the slot and Linza was just gathering her things to step out for her break when there was a firm knock at the ornate door.

“Come in!” Linza called.

Grun entered. His long hair was up in a bun and his beard trimmed short. He now wore fitted trousers and a blazer with no shirt underneath. Had Tanyth taken him shopping? Or was this his own preferred style? 

He looked around the little room, his eyes hovering over the grate for a moment.

Linza reeled, reminding herself that he couldn’t see her lest she totally give in to the panic sizzling in her limbs.

 “Hi! I’m, uh… Grun. I’m new here and I figured it’d best if I, y’know, knew what all there was here. Tanyth said I ought to, since lots of folks start in my department and then ask about other things. The vanilla department, that is. I— um, I’m totally rambling.” Grun sat down awkwardly on the bamboo mat.

She was reluctant to admit how much his awkwardness settled her. She could do without the arrogant swagger. Seeing him so nervous, she almost liked him. Almost.

Did he know that it was her? If he asked her name, she’d tell him. Otherwise, it was expected that the illusionist in this scenario spoke as little as was necessary, and usually only answered direct questions. Not all guests liked the idea of being watched. The screen made it easier for them to imagine that they were alone with their illusion.

“H-how does this work?” he asked.

For these experiences, Linza used her ‘reading voice’ which was smooth and controlled and different enough from her conversational tone that he might not notice. “You tell me what you’d like. Almost anything at all. You’ll feel it, like it’s real. At any time, if you reject the illusion, the effect and the feeling will stop, and it will look translucent. It will last up to fifteen minutes.”

He nodded and ran his fingers through his beard.

He didn’t seem to have noticed that it was Linza. Here, sitting at her stool in the cozy little room, cloaked in shadow, the grate between them, it was easy to treat him like she would any other guest. 

As he described what he wanted, the image formed in her mind.

And then as she chanted the words and traced the gestures, the image formed in front of him.

The image was a woman, as much taller than him as he was taller than Linza. She was half-orc, hair in a ponytail, golden hoops lining her ears and one in her lip. She was naked, her breasts laying against her chest with nipples darker green than the rest of her skin.

“Why, aren’t you a pretty little thing?” Her voice was sweet and smoky.

He looked up at her, enraptured.

“C’mere!” She wrapped around him from behind and started pawing at his clothes. He unbuttoned them and soon was naked too.

Linza tried to maintain a merely professional appreciation of his body, ignoring the tingle of heat between her legs at the breadth of his shoulders, the muscles of his legs and ass, the slight softness of his stomach. She couldn’t help but remember the way all those muscles had strained on the veranda as he’d worked to control his release. His shaft throbbed quickly to its full length and girth, noticeably thicker in the middle.

Usually, Linza imagined the figures in the illusions as characters separate from herself, which made it easier to prompt them to say or do things that Linza herself wouldn’t do. But her professionalism wavered and though she couldn’t say why, she wanted very much to be that massive woman who towered over him.

The illusory orc woman gently pressed at Grun’s shoulders and he spun obediently, facing her and straddling her hips.

With one hand, she ran her fingers up his now hardened shaft.

He shivered and gasped.

Her other hand reached over his leg and easily cupped his whole ass cheek in her fingers. She squeezed, tugging at his rim.

He moaned.

“Why, you’re so ready to spread yourself for me, aren’t you?” she said.

He blushed and sputtered, just like he said he’d like to.

“Must be because you’re a greedy little slut,” she crooned.

“I am not, I—”

“Shhh.” She lifted her hand from his shaft to put a finger to his lips. She then ran that fingertip gently over his lower lip. As his jaw slacked, she pressed her finger to his tongue. He licked and sucked, eager to please.

With her hand on his ass, she pressed him closer into her soft stomach. 

Reflexively, he bucked his hips, grinding against her. He whimpered, desperate for more sensation, but too deferential to demand it.

Heat blurred the edges of Linza’s vision, her imagination all too eager to merge her with the illusion, to provide the phantom sensation of his throbbing cock against her stomach. It was risky and unprofessional to lose control like this—too likely to result in a bad experience for the client, an illusion that wasn’t to their liking. But what he’d asked for was exactly what she wanted to do to him, and she couldn’t bring herself to stop, not with his eyes rolling back and his breath shuddering with anticipation.

She withdrew her finger from his mouth and stroked his shaft in her hand, her palm nearly enveloping his entire length.

He gasped and moaned at the relief.

Her hand on his ass gripped tighter, stretched his rim more.

He whimpered with ecstasy.

A wicked, toothy grin parted her thick green lips. “You seem like you might like something like this…” She inched her fingers over and ran one fingertip lightly over the edge of his rim.

“Y-yes!” he said.

“Oh yeah? Do you like… this?” She brought the fingertip further over, running circles across his whole rim, still stroking him with the other hand.

“Yessss…” he moaned. He slumped forward, cheek against her breast.

Through the illusion, he would feel the softness of her skin, hear the thunder of her heartbeat, experience his weight melting into her, even as in reality he still held himself upright.

“F-fuck… you’re making me drip…” he said. His whole body shook with his trembling breath.

Linza slowed, not wanting to give it to him so easily, only halfway remembering that he had indeed asked to be edged. The pause allowed her good sense to catch up to her, and she forced herself back into her body, back to the awareness that the illusion of the orcish woman was outside of her.

Anyone other than her or Grun would just see the half-orc man kneeling on the bamboo mat with his legs spread wide, his cock throbbing into the air and his head steadily dripping pre-cum.

The thought had the opposite of its intended effect. With just her mind and her magic, Linza had reduced this swaggering man into a panting, pleading mess. He would explode onto the floor without a single touch to his cock, not from himself or anyone else, simply because of what she did to his brain.

She had been working this job for months. She didn’t know why it was now and with him that she finally understood exactly what she did, exactly what kind of power she wielded with her chants and hand signs and the rattle of a crystal.

It was even more intoxicating than the arousal.

“Good,” she said through the illusory orc, dipping her finger in the puddle of pre-cum forming on the bamboo mat. “I want more. Do you want more?”

He nodded.

“Say it.” She teased his rim harder.

He gasped and whimpered.

“Use your words.”

“P-please! I want you inside of me, please!”

Something long-dormant awoke within Linza, unable to resist the half-orc’s desperate call. It slithered through her mind, gorging itself on the knowledge of her power, writhing sensuously in the honey of the half-orc’s pleading. 

Gods, how she loved to see him squirm. 

Unlimited by the physical mechanics of lubrication and perfectly calibrated to the right level of sensation by the desires of his mind, she pressed her finger inside of him.

“Fuck! Oh gods, fuck, oh…” His whole body trembled, every muscle taught, just as when he’d wrestled to control himself for the madame. 

“You like that quite a lot, don’t you?”

“Yes! Fuck, you feel so good… fuck, I’m dripping…” His cock throbbed into the empty air, a steady drip of pre-cum joining the puddle, even as he felt her slick palm slide under his tip.

“Oh? And I haven’t even found your spot yet.”

“My— Ah!” He cried out as the sensation overwhelmed him.

This was the special power of the illusion. She needed only suggest it and Grun’s mind would select his most intense, most perfect, most pleasurable memory and serve it up for him, like a waking dream. He would feel her fingers curling within him, pressing against the muscular wall, activating every single nerve of pleasure.

He moaned from his very core.

She gave him a moment to adjust, then withdrew her finger and pressed harder again.

His eyes rolled back, cheeks flushed, breath hitching. “F-fuck that’s gonna make me…”

Linza slowed the sensation, licking her lips as if she could taste his sweet desperation.

Through the orc’s husky voice, she crooned, “Gonna make you what?”

He groaned. “Gonna make me cum…”

“Do you want to cum?”

“Yes! Please!” He looked up at her with pleading eyes.

She would have teased him forever if not for the way that his begging stoked her own arousal, made her hunger for release, even vicariously.

Her own breath coming fast and shallow, she started up the sensation again, stroking him and pressing against his spot.

His whole body quivered, pleaded. Gradually, his breathing quickened again. His groans deepened.

“F-fuck I’m… I’m so close I… can I?” He quivered like a drawn arrow, so close and yet so obedient, earning his release by providing such a delicious display.

“Cum for me,” she purred.

His eyes rolled back and his whole body tensed.

Linza nearly lost concentration on the illusion, so eager she was to watch his cock as it throbbed in the empty air. 

The spasm started at the base of his cock, his balls pulling tight as his face twisted into a grimace and a growl curled in his chest. With a shudder, he burst, ropes of cum spurting in mesmerizing arcs and then puddling on the bamboo mat.

She kept up the sensation until his cum ran clear, signaling the end of his climax, and she gently slowed as he relaxed. Then she curled around him, humming gently and stroking his hair with her hand that was almost the size of his head.

The tenderness surprised Linza almost as much as the slithering wickedness had. What exactly had Grun awakened in her?

Whatever it was, it faded as exhaustion settled heavily over her, as much in sympathy to Grun’s afterglow as in indication that she was pushing the edge of her magical capacity.

She nudged him down gently onto the bamboo mat and smoothed his hair down, then released the magic.

Grun sighed, eyes closed and expression serene.

Linza sat on the little stool, her breathing slowing as she tried to account for what had just happened. There was now no denying that Grun affected her how no one else ever had. Surely it was wrong to enjoy making someone squirm so much, and yet… he liked it, didn’t he? Was this the ‘chemistry’ that Wyn talked about?

But why did it have to be with him?

And why did it have to turn her into this slithering, wicked thing?

She suddenly wasn’t sure if she liked it—if she liked any of it. Nausea tugged at her stomach—she’d lost track of time and pushed her limits. Maybe that’s all this was—just magical exhaustion making her woozy. Like lack of oxygen or sleep, magical depletion could have strange effects. Fortunately, her last two slots of the day were just for Minor Illusions.

Grun stirred and stretched, disturbing Linza from her thoughts. She was too tired and confused to do anything but watch him. He dressed again, but paused by the door as he went to leave.

“Thank you,” he said.

Linza didn’t reply.

He left.

Muscle memory took over as she slid open the screen and cleaned the room. Within minutes, nothing remained of what had just transpired.

The same could not be said for Linza’s mind.

All she could see when she closed her eyes was his climax, over and over again.

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