by Elizabeth Myrddin

A quiver washed over Delia as she realized she was up next. So far, the other fantasies had been predictable. Mona wanted to be tied, slowly tickled with feathers and then mounted by a body-builder male or tongued by a voluptuous stripper. Helen wanted to be blindfolded and toyed with by a man and woman at the same time, each competing to bring her to climax first. Then there had been the spanking-daddy's-naughty-girl and other typical role-playing fantasies. Through all the recitations, Delia resisted the urge to yawn conspicuously. Patiently awaiting her moment on stage, she coyly twirled her long, bright red hair and kept a feigned expression of rapt fascination in her cold green eyes.

Delia was well-equipped for her role in the avant-garde scene as ubiquitous social butterfly. Lithe and quite striking, she had a marvelous sense of aesthetics. Her heightened sense of glamour could be impressive and imposing if somewhat overwrought. She was also self-absorbed enough to be quite entertaining to casual acquaintances.

Delia belonged to a group of bi-curious and lesbian women who met weekly to share their dark daydreams. Once a month, the members of the group put together a performance piece to play at some of the clubs. Delia believed she was destined to be a famous performance artist, thus her connection with the group was more strategic than an exploration of her sexuality. Indeed, Delia took female lovers only when she felt unappreciated by men or when convenient to her theatrical ambitions. For those "watching in the wings" of social interaction, her predatory behavior and flawless narcissism made Delia very amusing to be around - so long as one avoided getting caught in the crossfire.

Sighing impatiently, Delia's thoughts wandered away from the fantasy being recited on stage. One of her bisexual ex-lovers, Candice, was part of tonight's group and Delia accidentally caught her hostile gaze. After Candice had broken it off with her, Delia had seduced three of Candice's subsequent lovers. Eventually there had been an ugly confrontation between Candice and Delia:

"You're a vain, egotistical person, Delia. A manipulative, narcissistic predator with no self-awareness."

"Oh please, Candice. You are only calling me predatory because I was able to seduce your lovers. And don't be so quick to dismiss the narcissist as being vain or egocentric. I'm actually flattered to be considered a narcissist. It's a form of personal divinity that most can only strive for."

Delia's adoration of herself was eclipsed only by the envy she felt she received from others.

* * *

At last Rosilyn finished her first-time seduction fantasy. Everyone clapped and murmured appreciatively. Delia fidgeted, bored that so many in the group complimented Rosilyn on her recital. With a lazy smile she commented in a soft voice, " Well Rosilyn, it was very -- uhm -- quaint -- that you chose to explore a virginal theme in your fantasy."

There was a quick break and more wine was poured. Delia turned down the lights and prepared the atmosphere. She would do more than recite her fantasy, she would perform it. Everything she did was as theatrical as possible.

She lit a dozen red votive candles. Using graceful, choreographed movements Delia stripped off her green velvet dressing gown. She caressed herself as she removed her garter and sheer black stockings. Pausing dramatically, Delia stretched her naked body and absentmindedly played with her small, pear-shaped breasts. Her tall, bony body caught shadows from the candle flames, and here and there various tattoos seemed to move and stretch with her.

The room was quiet except for the occasional sizzle of candle wax. Delia draped the dressing gown on the carpet and stretched out. She shook her wavy strands of red hair so that they spilled casually over her shoulders. A shiver of anticipation and a feeling of hunger washed over her. When Delia felt she had the undivided attention of everyone, she silently reminded herself to feed off it. Her voice was soft and precise as she began to describe her fantasy:

"I am a pale, ivory goddess. A woman of uninhibited passion. I inspire powerful lust in those I choose to enchant. I am stretched out on a Victorian daybed. I have removed my robe and I am lounging, enjoying my nakedness. The muted light and warmth from a fireplace gives my skin a rosy glow. My eyes are deep cool pools of sexual mystery..."

An abrupt snorting laugh, which Delia recognized as coming from Candice, interrupted her self-congratulatory monologue. After a moment, Delia narrowed her eyes and continued languidly.

"I am surrounded by a group of attractive men and boys of varying ages. They are like knights or satyrs, warriors or lost boys. They are naked. Their sinewy, taut bodies ripple with sexual tension. They stare at my body, caressing my skin with their eyes. They reach for my hair with their hands, but they are not allowed to touch me. They may only touch themselves, and they must wait for my command to do so."

Someone else in the room muttered sarcastically, "Can you say, stripper-damage?" and there were stifled chuckles. Delia was so absorbed in her performance that she mistook the muted noise as enjoyment.

On stage, she sighed and stretched again, arching her back and stroking from her knees to her inner thighs, finally resting her arms behind her neck. In a husky, low voice she half-whispered the rest of her fantasy.

"As I randomly touch and caress myself, the young men are overwhelmed by their animal needs. They strain against their lust, imploring me with their eyes to release them from their bittersweet agony and longing. Soon, I will allow them to masturbate while looking at me. One by one they will climax, and in appreciation, they save their semen for me in a stained glass decanter. I close my eyes and smile slowly. Softy, but with a hint of sardonic humor, I utter the words that will allow them to begin their ritual of sexual release. 'Okay gang...Pull.' I am an ivory goddess still."

Delia moaned, sighed loudly, and dropped her head in her arms. She held this pose for a dramatic moment. Around the room members of the group roll their eyes and make gagging gestures with their fingers down their throats.

Delia jumped up with a smug expression on her face, got dressed and gathered her belongings. She was oblivious to the group's reaction.

"A little humor there at the end you all apparently missed," Delia said, not bothering to hide the disdain in her voice.

"Oh was it just at the end? I wasn't quite sure." Mona stood and turned up the lights. "We'll meet next week to discuss the magical significance, if any, contained in some of our recitals. Remember, I emphasized bondage as a theme, and a few of you neglected this aspect. I meant actual, not symbolic bondage. Anyway. See you next time."

Outside, Colin was waiting on his motorcycle. He smiled somberly as Delia flounced over to him and said petulantly, "I wish you would have been there tonight. I desperately needed some men, or at least one man, to enhance my fantasy. Everyone seems to have missed the point in it."

Colin's dark brown eyes smiled moodily as he responded in his soft British voice, "I don't really go in for that sort of thing. Except privately, that is." He reached out and caressed Delia's hair and face. "I'm glad you're letting me stay over tonight."

Still lost in her own thoughts, Delia's eyes glinted icily as she continued in a disgusted tone, "Bondage and power was the theme. Everyone was under someone else's power in their fantasy. My ivory goddess had absolute power over her males. She controlled their release. It was full of bondage and power, even if the bondage was symbolic."

Colin started the motorcycle and commented absently, "Hmm.I suppose. Shall we go and have a bit of role-playing on our own? It's been a long time since I've seen you. You've been so bloody busy with your projects." Without responding, Delia tossed her hair and got behind him on the motorcycle.

* * *

Delia lay outstretched and bound on a smooth black marble table in what she liked to call her "Christ" pose. A thick rope coiled around her left hand, went up her shoulder, looped around her neck and down her right shoulder, circling finally around her left hand. Her feet were bound together with another piece of rope. She had badgered Colin until he agreed to tie her up in this particular manner. She refused to have sex with him otherwise. He was so in love with her that he would do anything that moved her to be nice to him. At the moment, poor Colin was out on a lube run.

"Such a weak little puppy. It's a good thing he's so attractive," she thought acidly.

Fresh from Britain less than a year ago, Colin's slicked-back, black hair, slender pale body, and dapper sense of style caught Delia's fancy right away. Luckily, his sexual tastes slanted a complimentary direction to Delia's: She being dominant, and he being servile.

Delia's thoughts wandered lazily as she waited for Colin to return. She shifted a little and frowned. Her wrists felt scraped by the rope. The loop around her neck seemed to be pressing slightly against her jugular. Her feet started to tingle.

Delia took a deep breath and a hot, spreading rush of anxiety swept through her. It distinctly felt as though her bindings were tightening around her. She turned her head to look at her left hand, wincing as the rope pressed tighter around her neck. She stared intently for a minute and gasped in horror as ever so slightly she saw the rope creep a notch tighter around her wrist. Delia's heart began pounding and her thoughts swam in a muddle of confusion and fear.

A wintry draft drifted over her body and she looked up.

A pale-skinned woman wearing a long black robe stood in the middle of the room. The woman pushed a long strand of black hair out of her face and smiled as she looked Delia over. Her lips were stained a dark red, her grey eyes large and smoky. She held a dozen or so pieces of yellowed parchment paper, which she glanced at briefly.

The woman's voice was low and detached. "Well now. We've looked over your map. You've quite a past, my dear. And would have had quite a future as well. Unfortunately, you won't make it any farther than the next few minutes. We drew straws and I won. I'm the emissary."

"What do you mean 'emissary?' Who the hell are you?" Delia managed to cough out hoarsely.

"Oh...we've had many different names, you and I. As for the others..."

The woman paused as more figures appeared in the room, eight in all. "Well, we need not bother with formalities."

Delia's labored breathing stopped for a moment as four of the figures stood to her left and the other four to her right. The two groups picked up the rope slack on either side, tugging slightly. Delia gasped and whimpered with fright. "What the -- Why --"

Delia interrupted, "It's unanimous. We've all signed the petition. Your a moron and an asshole. The rest of your map appears to continue along the same lines. You'll just have to start over."

Delia slumped and tried to breathe evenly. Her feet were numb and her fingers were painful and swollen. She felt cramping start in her stomach and waves of nausea flood through her. "And who the hell are you to decide this?"

"Well honey, just think of us as members of the Karma Police," the woman said sarcastically. "That is probably the easiest concept for you to grasp."

The others laughed. It was an eerie sound. Like trees rustling and branches scraping.

"Bet you didn't know we could deal with these matters so casually, did you?" The woman in the long robe raised her hand and announced, "I believe we are just about ready." She closed her eyes. Taking a deep breath, the robed woman mimicked Delia's fantasy voice perfectly as she said, "Okay gang...Pull."


This is a reworked version of the story, which first appeared in SINS OF COFFEE, Issue 7 (1991).