evilgoddss: (Harry Potter)
[personal profile] evilgoddss
Well, with all sorts of hurdles, repairs, events and just plain blahness... chapter nine is now in draft. By that I mean, I just took out 3000 words (that I wasn't happy with), and I'm now working on the spot I just killed.

However, for anyone's reading pleasure, here's a taste of chapter 9.


No Competition - Chapter 9 Snippet

The first clue, the very first tiny itsy-bitsy inkling, actually, that something was terribly awry, came when Ally, who had cheerfully seated them around her kitchen table and then kindly poured both of them a dreadfully sweet tea in her best fine china -- the ones she reserved only for the most hoity toity of guests (mercifully, no in laws had ever visited) -- set out a matching plate of her best lemon-shortbread. They immediately froze in their seats, Judas’ cup near his mouth…. And understood with utter clarity just exactly how prey felt.

Ally, of course, smirked at them, and disappeared down into the hallway. An almighty crash filled the house for but a moment, and then the clear sound of something being dragged. Judas winced, wondering if they were being set up for body disposal. Lucifer seemed to relax, thinking that a little death and dismemberment was no big deal between friends, and that Ally was trying to hard.

Sadly, when she returned dragging an easel-chart, rather than a body, behind her, they felt that cold chill of prey again.

“Ah, are we birthday planning? It’s running a little late, luv, seeing as tomorrow’s our boy’s birthday.” Judas hedged carefully.

Lucifer rolled his eyes. He had a more pressing concern. If he was going to burn in the fires of Ally’s insanity, then others should so suffer as well. “Where’s the Lich and the hag?” Lucifer asked bravely, head craning to see the back door window, as if the Lich would be standing right there. (To be fair, he wanted to spread pain. It wasn’t as if he hid behind the younger being, far from it. Especially as there wasn’t enough meat, or any meat, on the Lich’s bones to truly hide behind. Hiding behind Pru made infinitely more sense.)

“Busy, Gentlemen, and I do use that terminology loosely. The Lich is going through that Goblin contract about his ritual room with a silver comb. And Pru is minding Harry this morning” Ally smiled.

Judas thumped his head on the kitchen table. “He’s still on that? It’s been three days.”

“It’ll be three centuries.” Lucifer grumped. “I didn’t hire him as headmaster of Scholomance because he’s the laid-back, easy-going type, you know. That sack of bones can really hold a grudge.”

“Which is why he and I get along so very well,” Ally smiled broadly, her teeth glinting just like a shark’s wound in the sun right before a deep killing bite. “Regardless of the Lich’s grudge against the Goblins, we who are all here have other matters to discuss.”

Lucifer shifted in his seat. “We’ll, Ducky, that sounds lovely, I must say… but you know, I’m on a deadline. Dad’s going to be shunting me back down to my cage in about five minutes.”

Ally’s smile, if anything, widened. “Oh darling, five minutes is MORE than sufficient to my requirements. But, just in case, I got down on my knees and said a prayer this morning, to your dear Dad, humbly asking if he could spare a bit of time for me to have this very important discussion with you. Being a just and benevolent God, I’m sure he’ll allow a few minutes leeway.”

A shudder ran through Lucifer. Just and Benevolent? His Father? Maybe she hadn’t read the old testament. Judas reached out to softly pat his shoulder. “Relax. Lucky. We’ve both survived centuries of torture. We can handle ten or so minutes of a lecture.”

Clearly, Judas hadn’t met Ally before. Lucifer closed his eyes and took in a breath. He squared his shoulders. (The whimper which escaped the devil was forevermore disavowed.) “I’m ready. Do your worst.” He said.

“Quite.” Ally nodded. “My husband and I took wee Harry to visit the dragons at the reserve the other day. A dreadful idear, I must say. We’re never doing that again. Dragons, I tell you -- do you know how big there are? How many teeth they have? THEY BREATH FIRE! And there’s Harry, flitting around and teasing them like some sort of fluttery aperitif!”

Her hands were in the air waving, and her tone was growing more strident with each second. Judas pursed his lips, and thoughtfully cocked his head, “Do you need a calming draught?” He asked curiously.

“No!” Ally snarled. “I do not… look, my husband made a request of me that I dismissed at the time due to the terrible influence of such calming draughts.” The matriarch of house Lockwood, or at least, this cadet house of such, flipped the standing easel around. “Upon later consideration, I must admit my own shame for doing such. For you see, gentlemen, it’s a terrible thing I had done. Terrible and inconsiderate. Not right of a wife. And, now I must make amends.” She flipped the first page of the chart, and in bold red letters

“BULLYING IS WRONG!”

“Jared asked me quite plainly to make Lucifer and you stop harassing him. And I ignored him, without giving it a fair and unbiased consideration. But, upon reflection, it’s not even arguable. It’s quite blatant what you two do to my poor sweet husband. It’s reprehensible, appalling, and unacceptable. And, not only is behaving in such a fashion immoral, it sets a bad example to Harry. We wouldn’t want that, now would we?”

The shifting and wary gazes coming her way made the Black blood in her purr in pleasure. “So, today, we are going to have a very thorough discussion on what it means to bully. Why we do not like bullies, and what shall be the further consequences for anyone in Little Whinging who opts to bully another person in Little Whinging.”

Where she got the long wooden pointer from, neither devil nor vampire knew. But, if she rolled out a chalkboard next, the devil decided he was voluntarily sending himself back to hell.

“The classic definition of ‘bully’, per Websters is, as a verb, to use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants: and as a noun, someone who uses superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants.”

Ally went through each word slowly, her glare fierce and hostile.

“Harassment is another word that falls under the bully umbrella, and it is any act or aggression that is unwanted and uninvited. Harassment can be emotional, intellectual, physical, or sexual.” With aplomb, Ally flipped to a new page on chart. “We, specifically, are interested in discussing the badness of Sexual Harassment: the unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature.

“Point of interest, Ally… you do know that he’s the devil. Badness is what he does?” Judas suggested carefully. Lucifer nodded fervently.

“I so don’t care.” Ally sneered. “However, to clarify things for your pitiful little minds, we are having this discussion because when my darling Jasper made his wedding vows to me, with full awareness that I descend from House Black, he swore upon his magic to be faithful and true in body and mind to only me.” She tapped a marker against the page. “This means, gentlemen, that any sexual advance on him is utterly unwelcome -- by me, never you mind Jasper’s thoughts on the subject. Though, to be thorough, he’d like you to both ruddy stop rubbing up against him, touching him, pinching him, leering at him…” She gave Judas a firm glare…”Licking him.”

“I’m just being friendly! Dogs do it all the time to one another…” the vampire protested.

“Suffice it to say, your attempts to seduce my man are a blatant slur against me. You can just be grateful that my Jasper is a smart man. He understands precisely what a cuckolded wife of House Black would do. And, he wants his tackle to remain intact.”

Judas raised a hand, “If we didn’t stop, and say, Jasper has a bad bought of potioning and succumbs… what would you do?”

“Pickle your prick, and serve it to you, all nicely diced up at the next bank holiday barbecue.” She didn’t even blink.

Judas straightened, and crossed his legs. “Right.”

“So.” Lucifer rubbed his jaw. “You want us to stop mentioning how hot he is? Or good his ass looks. How much fun we could have boinking.”

“Yes.” Ally’s eyes glittered unpleasantly.

“So...no pinching, no rubbing, no grinding, no more licking, and essentially no-touching.” Judas ticked each item off on his fingers.

“No comments, allusions, or leers.” Ally continued blithely. “No drooling over, or any such act that could be construed as either a) physical interest, b) sexual interest, or c) malign interest. Now, I recognize the pair of you are morally bankrupt and haven’t met an ethic that you didn’t trod all over with muddy boots, but the bottom line is -- I can make your lives more hellish than you’ve ever known if you don’t stop.”

Lucifer and Judas snorted in tandem at that. “Now, Luv, pickling pricks aside, do think about who you’re threatening.” The devil leaned back and airily waived his hand at both himself and Judas.

Ally sniffed. “That is an attempt an intimidation. For the record, gentlemen, those cups you’ve been drinking from? I rinsed them quite thoroughly with holy water before setting them out. I let them air dry to coat the inside of the cup. The vicar at St. Mary’s, by the way, was most helpful when I asked for a few bottles. I used another bottle to make the tea.”

Lucifer bolted for the sink, dry retching into the basin. Judas just sat stone still, and looked at the human woman in pure horror.

Ally smirked, quietly counting to ten in her head before cheerfully admitting, “Just kidding.”

“Sweet Mother of Sin.” Judas breathed, shoulders slumping. “Why was the Black bloodline allowed to flourish for so long?”
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