When Jonathan came to, he knew something was seriously wrong. The first clue was that he’d apparently fallen asleep in the middle of the floor, and the angle had done a serious number on his neck muscles. The second clue was the mess he’d made in his pants. He checked his watch – he’d been passed out for forty minutes or so. This had not gone according to plan. He stood up very gently and shuffled off to the en-suite bathroom to clean up and change his clothes.
As he finished dressing himself, he started doing something he rarely engaged in – introspection. Jonathan was completely fine with Adrienne’s answer. No meant no. But he distinctly remembered not being ok with it only moments before he suddenly was. He’d seen the look of fear as he cornered her. As Red as the subsequent thought was, it felt somehow alien. Like the thought had broken into his mind from somewhere else.
As he reflected, it occurred to him that the whole day had felt like that. Since when did he treat Julie well? He was still in disbelief that his ethics won out against his dick when Sandra had thrown herself at him. Ethics had never stopped him getting what he wanted before. He started connecting the dots in his head. Something had happened to him during the interview yesterday, and Raven had something to do with it. As he came to this realization, he felt that familiar shade creeping into the periphery of his mind. It was such a delectable Color, but it was also more distant, more remote than it had been earlier in the day. At the office, the Red thoughts had flowed freely into his mind from wherever they came. And if not himself, where was it precisely that they did come from? He wasn’t sure if it was going to help, but he fixed himself a gin and tonic.
He knew that Raven was a perfectly normal woman, but everything just kept pointing back to her. Those stunning Red Lips, the most perfect and vibrant lips of such unearthly beauty had only appeared during the interview with her. He knew he had nothing to worry about, but he found himself worrying regardless. The Red at his periphery started fighting to break through again. It would be so delightful to just let them in and take root. He would be such a Good Boy. Be a Good Boy. Listen to me, he thought. No! He slapped himself and nearly dropped the glass out of his other hand. The Red retreated from his consciousness briefly. It couldn’t have been an hour since he’d come but he was already getting turned on again. I’m going to beat this fucking thing, he thought.
It clicked. Pentagram necklace? Strange mutterings? Entrancing lips? There was a knot developing in his stomach. Is Raven a witch?
Jonathan yawned. It was well past midnight, and he’d spent hours searching in vain for anything related to witches and witchcraft that seemed even remotely plausible. His first naive search for “Witches” yielded more than 500 million results. That was not going to help. He narrowed his search parameters and tried to focus on real world historical documents and academic sources. The field was a lot smaller, but the content was a lot longer and more complicated. There were histories of witch hunting, works explaining modern Wicca practices and plenty of potential explanations ranging from mere superstition to gender based class struggles. They all had one thing in common though – none of the serious treatments seemed to consider the possibility they were real, and not just in a historiographical sense. Jonathan knew better. Not only were they real people, they had real magic. Even just thinking about it now he felt the trace of Red waiting for a moment of weakness to invade his mind again.
Earlier, around 10pm, he thought he’d struck gold with the Malleus Maleficarum, the “Hammer of Witches” penned in 1487. The context of the work was more interesting to Jonathan than its contents were. The official position of the Catholic church prior to this period was that witchcraft may have been something that people practiced, but that it had no power whatsoever – only God possessed supernatural power. This book disagreed, and is partially credited with a resurgence of interest in witchcraft and the persecution thereof.
Jonathan had no idea if anything contained within was legitimate. He couldn’t read Latin, and he had only skimmed the translation, but it essentially made a theological argument that witchcraft must be real because Satan was real. Jonathan wasn’t convinced that Satan was real, but what people wrote about the book’s author, one Heinrich Kramer, absolutely struck a chord with him. It was said that Kramer had penned the book in response to a trial for witchcraft that was suspended after he became completely obsessed with the accused. The thought resonated with him. Was this Heinrich Kramer like him? Did he fall under the spell of this Helena?
Having spent the last few hours falling down this rabbit hole, Jonathan was completely exhausted. His dreams were consumed by the Red.
On Wednesday morning, there was a message on Jonathan’s phone. It was from his wife.
“Can you meet me at the Marquis?” it read. He almost wanted to laugh. She goes out and fucks around the town, then wants me to pick her up? Still, it was a pleasant distraction from the larger concerns weighing him down.
“I have to go to work, catch a cab,” he replied.
“Please babe, it’s really important. Something terrible happened, I need you. I’m in 314”.
The hotel wasn’t too far out of his way. The last message from his wife had worried him, but he was almost as curious as he was concerned. The hotel was rather nice. It was an old one, but the renovations a few years back had really transformed it with a sleek, modern aesthetic. At the time it had looked borderline scifi, with stark whites contrasting against bold blue, green and Red.
He knocked on the door, but got no response. The door was unlocked, and he cautiously entered. What the fuck? Adrienne was sitting on the bed on all fours, dressed in skimpy cyan lingerie. He almost immediately felt his body responding to it. Mmmm. He closed the door and locked it behind him. His eyes traced up and down her delightful thigh-highs and garter belt. The matching bra and complete absence of panties made him weak at the knees. If this was her way of making up for yesterday, he was very happy to accept her apology.
“What have we got here,” he said playfully. Adrienne remained completely still and stared ahead. “So that’s what we’re playing, are we?” he approached her slowly, now rock hard. Once again, he could feel the Red thoughts trying to push their way into his mind, but by now he was fully confident he could contain them. He wouldn’t let them ruin his fun again.
Suddenly, he heard a noise. The en-suite door opened.
“Hello Sir,” said Raven. A cold shiver ran across his spine.
“You...” he said. He turned back to look at Adrienne, who was still motionless on the bed in that oh-so-sexy pose. “What have you done to her?”
“I don’t know what you mean,” Raven said in a tone of exaggerated innocence. She slowly walked towards Jonathan, and he shrank away from her in lock step.
“I know… I know what you are.”
“… you’re a… you’re a witch”. He almost whispered the final word. “You did something to me, too. But I’ve beaten it, whatever it is.” He sounded a lot more confident than he was. The Color gnawed at him. Raven raised her hands up beside herself in a sarcastic gesture.
“You got me. I’m a witch.” She closed her eyes for a moment and cocked her head to the side. “You’re wrong about one thing though. The magic is still there.”
The terror inside him grew, and grew. He did the only thing he knew how to do in the face of intense emotions – he lashed out.
“You try anything, absolutely anything, and I’ll break your fucking head against that door. Do you hear me you little cunt?” His breathing was ragged. She laughed.
“Let’s see you try then,” she said. She reached into her bag. Jonathan panicked. Oh Jesus oh Jesus oh Jesus. I have to stop her. He leapt forward and tackled her.
Raven may have been a witch, but her physical strength was not out of proportion with her small, slender frame. Jonathan easily overpowered her. He pulled her to the ground, and Raven struggled. She started chanting something, far louder than she had in the office during the interview. It wasn’t the Latin that he expected, it was much more guttural. Whatever she was preparing to do, he knew he had to stop it. He covered her mouth with one hand and struggled to knock whatever she was holding out with the other.
In the struggle, Jonathan didn’t notice the motion behind him. Just as he was satisfied that he’d pinned down Raven and was planning his next move, he was suddenly thrown by a tremendous, unseen force across the room. His head collided with the minibar. Raven was coughing and scrambling a few meters away, where he’d been launched from.
Adrienne was standing at the foot of the bed, with a small pouch of some kind of powder in one hand and the other outstretched in front of her. Jonathan struggled to stand, but by the time he did, it was already too late. Adrienne completed her spell, and everything went dark.
“Wake up, Senator.”
As he slowly became aware of his surroundings, Senator Delacroix realized that he was now tied to the chair. He still seemed to be in the same hotel room.
“Come on, wakey wakey, I need you alert for the next part.”
“When...” he muttered.
“When did you put Adrienne under your spell?”
“Pet came to me of her own free will. She begged me to take her, and when I showed her the object of her utmost desire, she begged even more to be taken deeper. I was more than happy to oblige.” Raven walked towards him. “Isn’t that right, Pet?”
“Yes Mistress,” she replied instantly. Raven produced a small black whip – a flogger perhaps – and held it in front of Jonathan’s face. Adrienne’s nipples hardened and her breathing grew shallow.
“You treated her like shit, Jonathan, for years. You never worried about what she wanted, not beyond the most shallow and superficial things.” She leaned in and whispered in her ears. “It’s no surprise she serves me so willingly. And this is what she craved privately.”
Jonathan watched passively as she walked back over to Adrienne and gently struck her with it. Adrienne let out a whimper.
“Mmmm, yes, I think we make a much better couple than the two of you ever did,” Raven continued. The two women passionately kissed. Under any other circumstances, seeing these two gorgeous women like this would have absolutely made his day.
“If this is your plan,” he said, pausing briefly to clear his throat. “I’m happy to keep watching the two of you make out.”
“Oh don’t worry Sir, things are about to get much more interesting for you.”
“And how is that? You’re going to put on some more lipstick?”
“The fascination spell is important, yes. But that’s only half the story, Senator.” She walked right up close to him again, Adrienne gazing at her longingly as she did.
Raven sat down on Jonathan’s lap. She wrapped one leg over to straddle him and smirked.
“You see, I know that you looove these lips,” she said, then kissed him gently on the cheek. There didn’t seem to be any magic involved, but he still felt a surge of excitement. The blend of fear and arousal was not something he’d ever felt before. It was intoxicating. “That love is inside you. And I can give it a form. Shape it. Give it a will. My will. And eventually,” she said, gently running a finger down his face, “it will become your will too. You’ve heard it already, haven’t you? Whispering delightful thoughts in your mind.”
Raven’s smile stretched across her face. She stared into his eyes intently, waiting for a response.
“I beat it once and I can beat it again,” he said, although he was anything but confident. He knew damn well how it felt before, and if that happened again he wasn’t at all sure he could resist it. It was exquisite.
“Maybe. Maybe not,” she replied. “Adrienne, would you like to begin?”
It was cool in the room, but he was sweating. Adrienne happily complied with her Mistress’ instructions and sensuously approached. The two women both began chanting loudly in unison. Jonathan clamped his eyes shut.
“Open your eyes, Jonathan,” said Adrienne in the silkiest voice imaginable.
“You know how good it feels,” said Raven.
He did know. He remembered the complete focus, his whole world fading away except the brilliant Red. The serenity of listening. You broke free of her spell once before, you could do it again, a small voice whispered in his mind. Just take a look. Just a little peek couldn’t hurt.
Standing before him was a vision of perfection. Jonathan knew he’d fucked up before his eyes had focussed. Oh fuckkkkkkkk… was his final coherent thought. Jonathan always appreciated a good pair of stockings, and a full spread of lingerie made him rock fucking hard. But something had changed about these. They were so much better, so much hotter, so much more intensely Blue. It was painful to look at it was so bright, so beautiful, so divine. A shade of perfect Cyan, more beautiful than any tropical shore or gemstone. His eyes were lost scanning up and down her perfectly toned legs. He wanted nothing more than to fall to his knees and worship them, if only he weren’t already restrained.
“Good,” said the exquisite Blue Lingerie. He listened eagerly. “You love looking at me, don’t you,” they continued.
“Yes...” he replied.
“You said that you’d do anything for the Red, didn’t you Jonathan? For those beautiful lips?”
“But you’ve been very naughty boy, haven’t you?”
“I’ve been very naughty...”
“You’ve been fighting against it. You’ve been trying to ignore it. Why are you fighting, Jonathan?”
“I… it’s not who I am... I’m under a spell...”
There was a moment of silence. There was distant whispering, but he couldn’t make it out.
“I know it’s hard,” the Lingerie continued, “But I need you to look away from me, just for a moment.”
“Please no, I need to...” he muttered.
“I order you to look at Raven. Do not defy me,” it said.
Tears welled up in Jonathan’s eyes, but he felt compelled to obey. He moved his head, but kept staring as long as physiology permitted him to. His eyes strained to keep looking, but eventually it was impossible. The fog in his mind subtly subsided, but it was too late. His eyes caught on Raven’s beautiful, luscious, stunning Red Lips, and the fog descended, more deeply than ever before. He sighed contentedly. His mind was a swirl of the two impossible, divine colors.
“Senator, senator,” the Lips began, “Maybe you’ll do a better job listening to the two of us.”
Shortly after lunch, Senator Delacroix walked into the reception area. He was smiling broadly. It was such a wonderful day.
“Oh there you are!” Julie said. “I’ve been covering for you, don’t worry.”
Everything after he was tied down and spellbound by witchcraft again was a bit of a blur, so Jonathan wasn’t entirely sure where the day had gone, but he wasn’t too fussed.
“Thanks Julie, you’re a star,” he replied. “Did anything urgent come up while I was gone?”
“Yes sir, Johns and Stevens wanted to have a word with you as soon as you were back in. Senator Summers also wanted to stop by in person to have a word this afternoon if you could make the space.”
“Senator Christine Summers?” he asked with irritation in his voice. What the hell does that bitch want, he thought. You shouldn’t think of women as bitches, came another thought. It was a delightful Red. You shouldn’t let your temper get the better of you, he continued to think, but this one was more of a Cyan if he had to judge. “Did she say what she was hoping to discuss?” he said, calming immediately and getting slightly aroused.
“No Sir,” she replied. He thought about it for a moment.
“I’m intrigued. Slot her in somewhere around 4 if you can.”
The rest of the day passed in a blur. Jonathan made calls, met other senators for coffee, organized paperwork and fired out e-mails to the press. He was sipping his second coffee when there was a knock on the door.
“Senator Summers,” he said, reaching out a hand. Only days earlier, Jonathan burned with a hatred for this woman, but now that didn’t seem so important. You should be polite and accommodating, he thought. Yes, listen to us. You should always try to be nice. She met his handshake, which was firm but not domineering. “To what do I owe this pleasure,” he said without a trace of sarcasm. He knew that he should always be nice, polite and accommodating. She took her seat, and Jonathan followed.
“I thought I’d come and wish you well for tomorrow. How are things looking?”
“I don’t think it would be very appropriate for me to talk strategy with the opposition leader, Senator,” he said, smiling politely.
“Come on now, old family friends can talk. In any case, I hope for your sake it doesn’t pass. We both know it’s going to get challenged as soon as it clears the senate – if it clears the senate – and it’s not going to stand up to that kind of scrutiny.”
“Maybe. Maybe not. That’s up to the courts. But regardless, it’s red meat for the base. This is exactly the kind of thing I was voted in for, you know.” He sat back in his chair. Christine looked straight into his eyes.
“Level with me, Johnathan. You know I had a great respect for your father. We all did. But you pushing this, I have to say, is making me lose respect for you. Do you really – genuinely – believe in this stuff?”
“I believe in the right to free expression, and free association,” he replied.
“And the right to discriminate freely based based on race, religion and gender identity, it would seem.”
“Look, I...” he paused. You don’t even like the bill, he thought. You aren’t going to support the bill, came a thought from another angle. He struggled to speak. “It… it doesn’t matter what I believe,” he said, doubts seeping in. He was slightly turned on now, which made it even harder to think. “I’m the goddamn party whip – you know that. I can’t be keeping everyone else in line if I’m shooting my mouth off about personal convictions.”
Christine smiled slightly.
“Well I guess that answers my question nicely. It really is a shame you joined that party in the end.”
“I’m good at what I do,” he replied, shrugging his shoulders.
“If you really have secured all the votes for tomorrow, then I can’t argue with that,” she said. There was a pause. Jonathan felt bad – slightly. He thought back to all the nasty shit he’d called her over the years. All the lingering gazes over her ass in the Senate building. He wasn’t even particularly attracted to her, it was just a force of habit. A familiar feeling welled up at the back of his mind. Oh no.
“Senator, I,” he started. He struggled against the impulse, but the voices were so strong. Tell her how sorry you are, he thought. Yes, tell her now, came another. “I’m so sorry,” he said. Christine looked slightly concerned.
“Sorry for what? Are you feeling alright?”
“I’ve said really terrible things about you behind your back. I’ve lied to your face more times than I can count. I’ve leered and I’ve gossiped and I’ve been a real asshole.”
Christine was silent. She looked equal parts confused and curious. The Colours seemed satisfied for now.
“Look, I really think you should leave,” he said. Christine didn’t say a word. She stood up, nodded in his direction, and walked out the door.
Jonathan was painfully hard.