The Burning Field, The First Saga of Wirishiem

The Burning Field, Part 1
{Strong language, nudity, bloody violence, alien sexual encounters within this saga}

Mari Chastain awoke on her back in the grass naked, burning with fever, blowing hot breath through rosy lips. The hour must have been early, after midnight. Fog settled and covered her. No harm had come to her and she was in no danger. This meadow she laid upon, she found earlier. She walked to it of her own free will. Or more precisely, it found her – drew her here. It was so green and fertile, lush with wildflowers and soft grass even the misty fog shimmered green. The meadow called to her. It pulled her.

Her long blond hair gathered bits of grass and debris as she rolled naked in the cool grass. Sometime during the night, she had taken off all her clothes and could not remember doing it. Her body was burning alive and the wet grass soothed it. She burned and sweated hot. Her mind swirled as she burned. She thought of her life and now desperately clung to the memory of it as those memories slipped away.

She was a work-at-home medical transcriber and document translator. Fluent in many languages, she transcribed both medical and legal documents from Portuguese to Arabic, from French to Japanese, and so forth. Her client list included some of the most renowned legal professionals and doctors worldwide.

Mari made tons of money. But she worked. She hunkered down in her “cubby” she called it, her small room with no phone, radio, or any interference, and put her nose to the grind, sometimes for six or seven hours without a pee break. She had a high-tech word processor unattached to the internet, and a keyboard convertible to hundreds of languages. She had a work ethic beyond tough; it was phenomenal. Discerning clients left strict mailing instructions. Direct deposits to the equivalent of twenty thousand dollars in a week from varied monies was commonplace.

But the dreams started and would not stop. Mari had been dreaming of this gap in the forest for weeks. This place, this vast green opening of rest and solitude, a respite from the thick brush and undergrowth, a cool calming place of peace to rest and sleep after the hacking and stomping work to get here. This meadow had called to her while she slept.

She first realized she had been sleepwalking a few days ago. It was not walking, though. It was sleep running. She awoke to find her sheets covered in tiny droplets of blood from the scratches. Prickly shrub and nettles scratched and nicked her skin. Visions of her running naked through the forest flashed in her head as she sat on her bed. When she awoke, her feet and the bed sheets were muddy.

Coming here had an urgency she could not ignore. The dreams were dangerous and she had to put an end to them. She could maim herself while sleep running. The urge got more intense, not less, and she knew she had to find this meadow. It pulled her ever harder increasing with intensity, like being on the edge of orgasm yearning to go over the waterfall.

In a frenzy, she packed some gear into a backpack, added a sleeping bag, drove from her home in River Bend, Indiana to the Great Nature Preserve, to the park ranger station on Highway 62, parked her car and hiked into the woods. She did not need directions. She knew where to begin.

Now, she lay in the fog of early morning stretching and squirming, burning from within lying beside running water, a stream of some width – a small river. She could hear it.

Her body ached. Her body had to stretch. She stretched out her arms above her head, and pointed her toes stretching her legs straight. Harder, she had to stretch harder. She gritted her teeth and gave all she had to the stretch.

SNAP!

“ARRRRRRGH!” Her spine broke in two and she screamed in agony. Her knee joints came loose next and she screamed again. She shook involuntarily. She blew sweat off her top lip. Her feet stretched and bones popped and she screamed again. Her feet shrank in one way and grew long in another. Her eyes went wide in fear when she saw her feet form hooves. She squeezed her eyes tight from the pain.

She cried out. “Ungh! Ungh! Ungh! NO! NOT MORE!” Her body jerked and lengthened and it was the worst pain yet. Every inch of her was agony as she grew to six feet tall. She shook her legs and arms from the intense pain.

Will I live through this! She lost consciousness. When she awoke, her collar bones snapped in two, both at once, and she screamed again.

“OHHHHHHH!” Her shoulders widened and her chest became more muscular and her breasts grew. Her arms lengthened and grew sinewy, strong, as did her fists. Blinding pain shot behind her eyes and her head pounded as horns sprouted from her temples. They grew up, arching back circling her head, and finishing below her ears.

The pain subsided some and she rolled, managing to rise to her hands and knees. Fur grew around her waist. She looked down her backside and white shaggy fur covered her new muscular ass like a thick baby blanket. She watched as the fur sprouted all the way down her legs to her hooves.

She got to her knees, reached to her head and felt her horns, and straightened her long blond hair about them. She raked her hair with her fingers so it flowed down her chest and hid her nipples.

Mari stood on wobbly legs for the first time. Shaggy white fur continued to grow, getting longer and warm. It coated the front of her belly in a triangular shape, the tip from her navel down draping her private parts offering her comfortable modesty.

Something made her uncomfortable, though, in the sky. The stars had eyes. She turned away.

She touched her face. Her teeth hurt. Her mouth and nose had elongated some but the rest was normal. A quick feel of her ears revealed they were longer and pointed.

“I must see this face,” she said to herself and marveled at her new voice, its deepness.

She walked to the sandy bank of the stream and peered into the dark water and the reflection of the half-moon. “I can’t see it,” she said. But the reflection will show the sky! She shuddered.

Something flew by her like a big bug. It flew by her again and it buzzed a deep buzz like a big bumble bee. She wanted to swat at it.

“What is your name?” it asked. She jerked her head right and left. It hovered in front of her eyes. It was a tiny naked girl with green and blue translucent wings like a dragonfly. She was an exact tiny human, three inches tall, down to fingers and toes, and breasts and nether region.

“My name?”

“Yes! You understand me! How wonderful. You are the first creature I’ve met that speaks Fairy, well, who’s not another Fairy. It saves me the trouble of using dust on you.”

“I think I knew languages in…that life,” she said nodding toward her backpack. She realized more of it faded from memory. “You are a Fairy.”

“Of course! So, what is your name?”

She frowned and thought for a moment. “I had a name before I came to this meadow.”

“Oh, the meadow. This is the Enchanted Meadow. It calls to creatures, not just humans.”

“The Enchanted Meadow.”

The Fairy hovered closer to her face. “Yes, but there’s something in your eyes. You have magic I think, maybe why the meadow called you.”

Another Fairy flew to the side of the one staring into her eyes. “Oh, introductions. I am Feedleboo, and this is my late friend, Beezip.”

There were now two naked girls, tiny naked girls with dragonfly wings. Feedleboo had black hair, cut short, and Beezip had brown hair past her ears.

“Sorry, Fee. I flew fast. Mother wouldn’t let me go. I had to sneak out.”

Feedleboo snickered. They kissed.

“I am,” she said and cleared her throat, “it feels like my name is Tani. Yes, I’m certain, Tani.”

“Do you know what you are?” Beezip asked. “We always ask because those Wood Sprites get difficult with us.”

“You should look at the water,” Feedleboo said.

“I tried, I couldn’t see much. It’s too dark.” The sky, don’t look at the sky!

“With your eyes, I thought you could see…wait. You haven’t discovered your magic. We can help.”

“Yes, if there is magic, we can make it pop out.”

She wanted to make them wait. There was something amiss, something in the sky she should not see. But, the promise of magic was too strong. Tani licked her lips.

The two Fairies buzzed in front of her as she stood beside the stream. Beezip reached under her bottom right wing and retrieved a pouch small as a tear drop. The Fairy opened it, stuck her tiny hand inside, removed some of the contents, and put her palm to her little mouth. She blew dust into Tani’s face. Tani sneezed.

The Fairies giggled.

Tani blinked her eyes. Things in the Enchanted Meadow glowed. The forest surrounding the meadow was normal forest, but the meadow glowed. The wildflowers lining both banks of the stream glowed. The tips of the green grass glowed. There was an oak grove in the distance to the east and each tree glowed like a house fire. The meadow was alive with bright glowing things.

“Do you see the magic, Tani?” Beezip asked. Don’t look up!

She nodded. She had an uneasy feeling, growing stronger. She looked down. She did not want to look up. Something nagged at her in the back of her head telling her an entity was in the sky watching her. She didn’t want to look at it.

“You seem afraid. What’s wrong?” Feedleboo asked.

“I think I know what’s been watching me now. There is a person in the sky watching me and I fear him.”

Both Fairies flew above her head and searched the sky. They flew back to her face. “No one is there, Tani,” Beezip said.

She grimaced, “I must look and be done with it, but I am so afraid!”

“Don’t cry, Tani, we’ll be here if you need us. We are stronger than we look,” Feedleboo said.

“NNNNHHH,” she moaned and looked skyward.

FOOM!

Rivers of stardust slammed into both her eyes! The silver sparkling rivers of light lifted her off her feet and bowed her backwards. Beezip and Feedleboo scattered. Within the stream of stardust, Tani saw the heavens. She saw the great constellations of old. There was Hercules. The massive constellation boasted the Hercules–Corona Borealis Great Wall, which is a massive group of galaxies 7.2 billion light-years across, 10 billion light-years long, and 1 billion light-years in depth. She marveled at its sheer size, its strength. Her attention turned to the small constellation Aries, the Ram, a visible improbability this time of year being spring, but with her new eyes, she could see them all.

Out of the constellation Aries, walked a demigod on stardust, stepping across stars and clouds of stars, stepping above mountains tipped with snow and time itself as he drew near. He was like her, half goat and half man. He played a multi-tubed flute and smiled as he walked until he reached the ground. Draped about his shoulders was a golden fleece.

“I am Pan,” he announced. “I have been watching you.” He took the last two steps.

The river of white behind him disappeared. He stood as a man. And she stood in front of him mouth agape. “I fear you. Why have you come.”

“Do not fear me, child, I am your protector,” he said with a small bow and flourish. “I have come to look upon the first Faun to walk the earth in several millennia and I am pleased. You are gorgeous, child.” He smiled. She blushed.

“Now I know why I feared you,” she said with a grin. He guffawed.

He leaned toward her as if sharing a secret. “I have not come for carnal pleasure, although it would not be turned down if offered, I assure you,” he said and straightened. “I have come to tell you the heavens have blessed you with magic. You have gazed into the stars and have beheld their wonders and they have returned the favor upon you. Do not fear me. Call upon me if you are in dire need, find Aries in the sky and I will appear. I bid you farewell, dear Tani.” She bowed her head.

He looked her up and down. “Call me,” he said nodding and grinned as stars twinkled across his form, and he disappeared.

Feedleboo and Beezip returned and circled her head. Their buzzing distracted her.

“Whoa, that happened,” Feedleboo said.

“Never seen a real god before,” Beezip said. “Are you going to bear his child?”

“Oh goodness, no. He came to lay eyes on me and meet me, that’s all.”

They stopped in front of her eyes. They looked at her face and her horns and her eyes. They looked at each other. Beezip took out her dust bag and got some dust out. She blew some in Feedleboo’s face and goat horns popped out of her head. They roared laughing.

“My turn!” Feedleboo said. She got out her bag and did the same to Beezip. Goat horns popped out. They laughed and laughed. Tani giggled with them. They lit on Tani’s shoulders, one on each, and pretended to be Tani.

“Now, we are all Faun. Let’s go to the water and see what we look like,” Feedleboo said.

They turned to the stream. Tani got on her knees and peered into the dark water. The reflection was poor so she passed her hand over the water and it solidified. It became a shining mirror.

“Magic! Nice!” Beezip said.

Tani saw her face for the first time and she smiled. She was beautiful. She had large, teardrop-shaped eyes and they were as black as the night. “Cool,” she said. Beezip touched her forehead. “No, I mean my eyes, they’re black.”

“No, they’re not.” Beezip pointed to the mirror. “Look better.”

She knelt lower and put her face close to the mirror. She gasped. Beezip was right. The center of her eyes was deep blue with yellow flecks sprinkled all through, the outer part, or the sclera, was black. She looked closer and it was the night sky with stars twinkling. Her eyes were black with twinkling stars.

“What other magic can you do besides turn water into glass?” Feedleboo asked.

“I’m not sure. I must go with how it feels. Let’s see, if I hold out my hand if front of me…”

“Wait! Let us get behind you first!”

She waited until they felt safe. “If I hold my hand out like this,” she said and put her hand out and faced the palm outward as if to say stop, “I can stop things.”

In the dark of night, it was difficult to tell, but the world stopped. She noticed all sound died as if she were deaf. “Do you feel it? I think I froze it.” She got no answer. She turned and saw the two Fairies motionless in flight staring straight ahead waiting, their wings in mid-beat. She stepped away from them. She put her hand out again in the same fashion, palm out, but this time closed her fist.

Movement started again. Sound began. It all began where it left off.

“You teleported! You were here, now you are there! Brilliant!” Feedleboo said.

“I don’t think she teleported,” Beezip said. “Am I right?”

“You are right, Beezip. I stopped time.”

“Oh dear. You can’t play with time magic. You’ll throw the world out of kilter. Use it in extreme emergency, if everyone’s lives are at stake. Not just yours, but everyone’s,” Feedleboo said.

“She’s right, Tani. You can’t use it unless everyone will die. You’ve been given a huge responsibility.”

“Yes, huge,” Feedleboo said nodding. Lights distracted them.

Two small glowing, flickering lights from above the eastern ridge descended from above the trees.

“Those are Pixies,” Beezip said. “They have powerful magic.”

They flew into the Enchanted Meadow and circled Tani and the Fairies. They landed and came to them. It was a male and female Pixie. They were three feet tall and blond haired, looking like human adults. The female wore a translucent yellow gown and the male wore translucent green trousers and suspenders and was bare-chested.

“We have been asked by Queen Rosepetal to come greet our new creature.”

Nosey, Tani thought. “I am a Faun. My name is Tani.”

“On behalf of the Pixie Queen, welcome Tani,” the female said and she curtsied. “We have never seen a creature such as you. What do you eat?”

“I will eat dried grasses, hay, and berries, I should think.” Tani’s stomach rumbled. “I didn’t realize I was hungry.”

“Ew,” Beezip said. Feedleboo elbowed her.

“Everyone is hungry after the Pulling. We will find you food and shelter for tonight so you can rest easy.”

“I’ll be fine under one of those oaks. I can sleep in the open just fine and munch on hay, although a…nice cottage nestled those oaks would be lovely, I think.”

“It’s settled. We will build you a cottage,” The Pixie male said. “You’ll find Pixie artisans beyond compare.”

“How can I repay you?”

“You speak and understand Pixie language. You also understand Fairy chatter. How?”

“I think I was a translator before, although I don’t remember details.”

“It’s a conditioned memory, like singing. You’ve practiced your languages so much they’ve become a part of who you are,” the female Pixie said.

“You’re smart.”

“Thank you,” she said and scowled at her man. “You can repay the Queen of the Pixies and the other creatures by living here in the oaks and welcoming all our new citizens as they are pulled, since you can speak ours and their language, you can likely speak theirs as well.”

“I will need to be shown your customs and courtesies. I will need to know where to direct them.”

“Your magic is all you need. Call to us and we will come and guide them home. Call to the Wood Sprites, and the Water Nymphs, and the Dwarves. It will come to you. Just call to the creatures and they will come and take their newest, and they will thank you.”

“Well, I thank you, good Pixies,” Tani said, her voice deep and smooth. She bowed her head.

“I am Hef and my mate is Pela,” he said. He bowed and she curtsied. “Just call if you need something. We will be back right away with food.”

Tani lowered her head and they flew away. “I must learn to curtsey. That seems to be the custom.”

Before her transformation, Mari left a new Mercedes S-Class Sedan in the ranger station parking lot. The park rangers had it towed away. After a week in impound, Mari’s mother retrieved it. Her relatives and the police searched for her for months but tuned up nothing. The CCTV was so grainy, the person it showed getting out of the Mercedes looked like a bald man. He walked out of the camera in the opposite direction of the forest. The police declared the car stolen and Mari the victim of foul play. Her family did not forget her, that May of 2014, but her case went cold. Her file went into the ever-growing pile of missing person cases.

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New Story, The Rule

Anonymous wrote this about The Rule. There are some spoilers:

Hi Tom,

Your title grabbed me. It told too little to guess anything about the story, and it was too intriguing to ignore. It’s a good title. You could say the rule is what gets Kelly killed.

(…) skipping spoilers

Your writing is to-the-point, and you don’t shy away from difficult topics or scenes. It’s something I appreciate… The story is sad indeed, in the “this needs to be written about” kind of sad. What I mean is that this story could have happened, and maybe did (though I hope not).

Kelly’s character is described in precise strokes, in how he speaks, what he wears, the feelings he has for Devin. I think the name “Kelly” is feminine too, is it not? At any rate, his characterisation is excellent, and there is just too much to it for me to quote all bits that make me imagine him so clearly. I feel bad for him, that his life ended the way it did. He may have been a transgender, but we’ll never know.

You addressed the issue of guilt, of who has the fault. I’m glad you did, because it’s a question with no answer, but the story would have felt incomplete without it. It gets the reader to think, as well. We still have discrimination nowadays, although in most countries it has gotten much better.

Your story is not only sad, but revolting. The contrast between the peace and love attitude, and Kelly having to abide by the rule of not showing his feelings, not following his heart, is striking. I enjoyed reading it for the way you handle the words and craft the story, but the thematic left a lump in my throat.

Well done.

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