Commissioned by The Penguin
- A Shard-Strike Universe Story
- Chapter 1
- Chapter 2
- Chapter 3
- Chapter 4
- Chapter 5
- Chapter 6
- Chapter 7
- Chapter 8
A Shard-Strike Universe Story
Commissioned by The Penguin
Written by HarmonyMotion
Edited by Au Goose
Shard-Strike Universe created by Au Goose
“And to you, the graduating class of 2018, I say, ‘the future is yours!’ Let’s make it a bright one!”
A barrage of golden tassled black graduation caps flew into the air.
Daniel pushed his way through the swarm to meet Leila stepping down from the raised stage. They fell together into a tight hug.
“And even bigger congrats on your internship at Gurglr! That’s serious stuff! Machine learning, AI… your computer stuff is gonna put me out of a job!”
“Aww, I doubt it! I don’t even know what I’m doing! I’m just going there to have free lunch!”
“Oh come on, Leila. You know you earned the position!”
“Nom nom nom!”
“Well, I know you’ll do great things, even if you won’t admit it.”
Daniel’s words were certainly prophetic, but not in the way he expected…
Four months at Gurglr and Leila wasn’t enjoying her free meals so much any more. They provided breakfast, lunch, dinner, and oh-so-many snacks. But she wasn’t partaking in it freely. No, it was out of necessity.
The machine learning project they had her on was huge! Only now they were short-handed, having just had their budget cut from lack of results. The real visionaries were being diverted to more lucrative endeavors and a skeleton crew of junior hires like Leila were left to pick up the pieces.
Leila felt like she did nothing but live at the office. 9:00 AM in, 11:00 PM out, three meals a day, unlimited snacking. Her previously short, slim body had steadily been packing on weight, but the increases were so gradual, her stress so high, that she barely noticed. Until one day, she looked at an old photo of herself while standing in front of a mirror.
She dropped her phone in shock.
What was supposed to be the dream job, a golden opportunity to work for a prestigious company, was wearing her down. She hardly got to spend any time with Daniel anymore. Meanwhile, he was so supportive of her. She didn’t want to mention how much trouble she was having at work… lest he think less of her.
Another long night in the office. She nibbled on a stick of cheese from the company’s always-stocked refrigerator. She kicked off a fresh sequence of simulations for the AI to play and experiment with. Hopefully the most recent round of bugs had been ironed out. Hopefully they wouldn’t have to painstakingly go back and discard hundreds of millions of faulty knowledge nodes from their servers. Hopefully they’d have something to show for it all in the morning.
A software alarm tripped. She got the page immediately. Shit. One of the servers was down. She was supposed to be strictly software side, but after the cuts…
Leila sighed and headed toward the racks. She hated the place. Hundreds of machines, each with twenty-odd cables coming out of them, simultaneously too cold in order to keep the computers from overheating, yet too hot when standing in between them in the aisles…
And the noise! The humming was absolutely deafening! She couldn’t even think in there! It was like being entombed in a hot, sweaty beehive.
She headed toward the server stack indicated on her phone display. Somewhere in that pile of scalable silicon a hard drive needed to be replaced. It was always such a pain to even locate the correct one.
But Leila wouldn’t have to locate anything this evening. The very first shard strike took care of that…
At first, Leila thought it was some aberrant electrical short. An arc of electricity, far larger than she’d ever seen, bolted from a server to the one opposite, crackling, smoking, sizzling. Before she even had time to process the event or panic about it, things got… weird.
Slender, half-opaque pink-white crystals burst through the ceiling, smashing into entire racks of servers, splintering upon impact. Leila screamed and instinctively ducked. Peeking out from under her arms, she saw the wreckage of shattered motherboards and burning cables. The night sky, visible through the gaps in the ceiling, glowed a strange, pastel pink.
More jagged crystals thundered around the Gurglr office, sending sparkling exotic shrapnel flying through the walls, continuing to bombard the dark office space. They ripped through desks, computers, paraphernalia, …and several people working late. Where the glassy fragments landed, they burst into flame, igniting the entire building with a strangely translucent fire. With fires breaking out on every floor and seemingly every room there was no way to escape.
Leila wanted to scream as the cataclysmic event unfolded around her. Bolts of electricity from the short-circuiting microchips pelted her skin. Her insides felt simultaneously icy and hot; an extremely uncomfortable, unfamiliar sensation… yet she felt no pain. All Leila could do was stare wide-eyed in horror and uncertainty as jagged lightning pierced her.
“What is happening?” she wailed in terror, feeling even more strange as the bolts continued to caress her, burning pin-prick holes into her clothes while leaving her skin unharmed.
Flooded with weirdly colored electricity, burning and shivering, Leila’s body began to change. Eyes wide open, she watched as the room seemed to shrink before her. Within moments, she was eye level with the top of racks that she’d required a stepladder to reach! She could feel the cold blast of the thundering air conditioning rustling her lovely brunette locks.
Leila looked down from her new vantage point. She was so tall! And as luck would have it, she retained her god-given blessed proportions that she’d been so proud of. If anything, they seemed amplified! The long, slender legs making up so much of her previously short frame still accounted for a generous portion of her height, but now her calves were thrusting out from the bottom of her ragged skirt. It looked like her best feature had gotten better.
But they weren’t merely long anymore; oh no, they were so much more now. Sleek. Fit. Smooth. Sexy.
Even amidst the flames, she was overcome by the need to see her legs! Twisting her hands into the hips of her skirt, she tore the smoldering garment in half with a single eager jerk, the ash-rotted fabric coming apart with a violent ripping sound. The vista that met her hungry gaze was… dreamy. Her thighs packed on dense, tight flesh, subtly rippling with feminine muscle. They were perfectly smooth and looked absolutely impenetrable, as if carved out of marble, then polished to a beautiful shine. Her calves were even longer than her upper legs, sporting sleek, elliptical muscle.
Leila had always felt self conscious about her knees, but her tan skin had tightened around them beautifully, excessive wrinkles and saggy flesh gone. In fact, there was absolutely nothing that sagged about her anymore.
She hadn’t been packing much in the trunk department, but she definitely needed a butt worthy of her sexy stems now. A quick twist at the waist, and she saw that was exactly what the electric make-over had on the schedule next. Her derriere began to expand, tastefully large spheres crowning the perfect majesty of her ridiculously long legs. Leila reached down to grab her porcelain cheeks, marveling how absolutely smooth they felt, how high they rested, and how lusciously firm they were as she squeezed them.
Tiny bolts of energy continued to arc into her flesh, seemingly powering this transformation working its way up her length and burning away the last scraps of her blouse. The bones of her hips began to creak, widening just a fraction, giving her a beautiful thigh gap while still retaining her slim frame.
Those slightly flared curves served as the perfect platter to outline her new, trimmer waist. All of the excess weight she had put on in the last six months reconfigured itself in all the right ways, absolutely melting away from her tapering waistline. What remained was a soft, sexy, subtle six-pack, shifting into and out of prominence with her lightest movement, mesmerizing to the eyes.
Traveling up the smooth, sinuous contours of her abdomen led her fingertips to pert breasts. Leila was watching in awe, realizing the transformation seemed to have started where a small crystal had burst forth from the floor, somehow growing through her foot without injuring her. And then… her vision of this curious overlap of flesh and crystal was becoming blocked. By her own expanding boobs!
She’d never been ashamed of the pair she had—she preferred tight and well-shaped over pure size. But now, she seemed to be having her cake and wolfing down on it too.
Her bare breasts filled with luscious flesh, yet still retaining that firm heft that she was so proud of. Leila almost wanted to protest as they grew larger, larger, then still impossibly larger, worried that they would begin to sag or cause her pain… but the logical consequences of her astounding growth never happened! Those beautiful swells just continued to balloon, pale skin with a light tan completely obscuring her view of her lower body.
She must have grown multiple cup sizes in the span of seconds!
And then they swelled once more, as if with one final heave, her staggeringly large breasts resting so proudly—nay arrogantly—on her beautiful torso.
She couldn’t see it, but her hair was thickening and gaining a beautiful luster as well. Her brunette locks lengthened and lightened in color, actually becoming pastel pink at the ends.
The electricity continued to buzz all over Leila’s new form. Her milky hazel eyes became vividly defined, gleaming like polished jade. Lips fuller, taking on a kissable cupid’s bow shape, where a mere smile would bewitch any onlookers fortunate enough to be blessed by Leila’s grace.
And then, a shard grew right through entire racks of servers, piercing and phasing through intricate circuitry, almost as if the air itself was freezing into frosted glass. Leila barely had time to register that the sharp piece of crystal was heading straight for her forehead. Its gleaming, sinister tip looked like it promised a gruesome end.
It struck her head on, the jagged, coursing electricity trailing behind it redirected and flowing directly into her brain. A thick golden lightning bolt etched itself onto her torso, traveling down from her neck, in between her generous cleavage, and ending below her bellybutton.
Leila’s neural pathways flared with frantic activity as she absorbed the contents of Gurglr’s machine learning algorithms…
The city of Phoenix—and the world—were in complete disarray as the mysterious lightning strikes continued on every continent. Friends and families searched for their loved ones while incredible videos of humans doing impossible, unnatural things flooded social media.
Miles from the blast downtown, Daniel had slept through it all. But this morning, in the sweltering, arid Arizona heat, he was glued to the TV, cell phone in hand. Sweat poured down his face as he sat next to his cheap electric fan. His call history was nothing but Leila, interspersed with some of her friends. None of them had seen her. And Leila wasn’t answering.
“Most of last night’s unexplained building fires are now under control according to the city’s fire chief.Police and paramedics are looking through the smoldering cinders for survivors. Many are asking, ‘Why us? Why Phoenix?’ A handful of other densely populated cities around the world also seem to have been targeted. San Francisco, Mexico City, New Delhi, Paris all are reporting similar dry lightning and the accompanying crystalline shards… Military advisors remain uncertain how this attack could have originated. Reports of ‘shard lightning’ attacks are also beginning to come in from remote locations with no clear targets or purpose.
Charred human bodies have been found in all areas under attack. Reports of missing persons continue to rise by the hour.
Major governments are denying responsibility for these horrific attacks and the catastrophic loss of life. Those fringe elements and terrorist bodies who have claimed responsibility have been deemed ‘opportunistic parasites’ by our national security agencies, incapable of an operation on this scale even with more conventional weaponry. The massive death toll surrounding the firestorms has drawn swift and unified condemnation even from nations so far unaffected. While tensions remain at an all time high, the focus has been on dealing with new fires as they erupt.
Interviews with people on the street offer countless theories. Many believe that this attack may have been extraterrestrial, or even magical in nature, citing the significance of the date as the Fall equinox. Let’s take a look at some of these stories.”
“Yeah, I saw it man, I was there! It was like, boom, and these rainbow-y crystals man, they were just there, growing through everything. I don’t know what was happening! Hey, hey you, that’s my bike, don’t you bleep!!! loot it!”
The camera swiftly pivoted to where the man was shouting. The would-be thief seemed to stiffen on the spot, then mysteriously wandered off in a daze. Then the screen swapped back to the studio where the network’s most charming anchor stared into the camera.
“Please, stay safe and contact your loved ones. The President will be giving a speech in one hour.
This has been Sophia Gomez, reporting live from CNN.”
More spellbinding imagery of the chaos filled the screen, some of it happening right in his own city. Tearing his eyes from the fresh footage, Daniel looked down at his phone and cursed.
“Come on, Leila, pick up…” he muttered, watching the growing instances of raiding and wanton destruction of property. Except this time, looters seemed to be launching fireballs from their hands, or pushing around cars with some concerted effort…
Suddenly, the front door to Daniel’s house burst open.
“Whoa! Shit!” he yelled at the shockingly tall woman at his doorstep. “Who are you?!” She was clad in what seemed to be black leather pants and matching jacket. How could she wear a getup like this on a day this hot?!
She was fucking beautiful though.
“Daniel. Your name is Daniel. I know you,” the tall, mystery bombshell said in a drone, her eyes glowing.
Daniel got up from his wooden chair and approached slowly.
“How do you know my name?” he inquired, his voice trembling.
“Leila. My name is Leila.” The unnatural glow in her eyes began to recede.
“You are Daniel. I am Leila. We are romantically linked.”
“Leila! Is that… is that really you? What happened?!”
“Growing shards. They struck me. In the head. I am…”
Finally, Leila’s eyes stopped glowing. She collapsed to the floor in a heap.
Daniel still couldn’t believe his eyes, but what could he do? He dragged an unconscious Leila, black leather and all, to his bed. Her outfit felt strange, almost like it was part of her skin…
He left it alone. He still couldn’t believe this bizarre bombshell could be his girlfriend. The last thing he wanted to do was take advantage of a confused girl, no matter how outrageously beautiful she was. And damn she was stacked!
Daniel laid her down on the bed of his studio apartment, turned on the air conditioning, and continued to watch the news.
“Daniel!” Leila bolted upright, her voice back to normal, albeit panicked.
“Leila! You’re awake!” Daniel brought her a sweating glass of ice water.
“Daniel! I had the strangest dream! I was at work, and another goddamn hard drive failed, and I went to the server room, and the craziest thing happened!”
She reached for the glass. The beads of water exploded with a loud pop, shocking her hand. Leila withdrew in pain, knocking and spilling it all over the floor.
“Ow! Fuck! What the hell was that?!” she cried.
“It… it was just water. It looked like a spark of electricity flew out of your fingertips…”
Leila gingerly rubbed her fingers. They seemed paler than usual.
“It… I was… no way. These… things…”
“Shards of crystal?” Daniel offered helpfully.
“Yes! How do you know that?”
“It’s all over the news, Lei-ly. The whole world is burning and going crazy and there’s crystals everywhere.”
“What!? So it wasn’t a dream!?”
“No. Actually, you might want to take a look at yourself…”
“Oh god! Is it bad!? Am I scarred all over?”
“Actually… You might be pleasantly surprised.
Leila swung her over the edge of the bed, nearly tripping over their unexpected length. Extending them and rising to full height, she gasped when she realized she was slightly taller than Daniel!
“I wasn’t even sure it was you when you showed up at my doorstep. …I still can’t really believe it,” he admitted.
“Whoa! I’m freaking tall!”
Daniel craned his neck slightly to look Leila in her new dark green eyes, quite a foreign sensation.
“Yeah. That’s not all, Lei…”
She looked down to examine her new legs, but her view was, of course, blocked by her stupendous breasts.
“Wow…” Leila brought her hands up to trace her new swells delicately with her fingers. Daniel could only stare and gulp.
“What the hell am I wearing?” she asked, as she brushed the back of her nails over the leathery black material. Her skin tingled from the sensation, even through seeming leather.
And then, the tightly clinging top peeled right off her fair skin. Completely dissipated into tiny arcs of lightning drawn into the tips of her fingers.
“Whoa!!” Leila and Daniel screamed in unison.
“Are you okay!?” Daniel shouted.
“Yeah. Yeah! I’m fine! It feels… good!”
Leila peeled away more of her sexy clubbing outfit, gasping as her electricity caused her nipples to tingle. She pushed her hands down her body, stripping off her entire getup in a single sensuous sweep accompanied by an unmistakable moan of pleasure.
Her moan was interrupted by a sharp gasp at the sight of a golden lightning bolt emblazoned down her torso. And by her overwhelming beauty in general. Just looking at her new, reformed self caused Leila’s pussy to ache. Her nipples began to stiffen as her chest flushed in arousal, heart pounding harder and faster, electricity surging through her veins. She pointed at them experimentally, massaging them gently with her crackling power. Oh, it felt so good! Those sensitive, rigid points began to thrum and vibrate of their own accord, until, until…
Those aching tips began to glow, the tiny hairs along her torso standing up before she arched her back, firing twin bolts of lightning that struck the wall!
“Oh wow!!!” Leila screamed as the bolts intensified, leaving black burns along the plaster. Her emerald eyes slammed shut.
“Holy shit! Leila!”
“Yessss!” She yelled, arcs of electricity rolling up between her legs like a Jacob’s Ladder, the bolts growing brighter and more intense just before they arced through her violently quivering nether lips. “It feels…. GOOOOD!”
Daniel ducked away, yelping in fear as Leila’s pleasure sent the two continuous bolts from her breasts dancing around the room!.
Leila came down off her electric peak. Opening her jade eyes, she saw a terrified Daniel.
But she was still horny. Something in her mind was telling her to play, to experiment. She could learn from this.
“So, Daniel,” she purred seductively, conjuring a thin veneer of crackling electricity that morphed itself into black, lacy lingerie that did nothing to cover her crotch or her still tingling nipples. “Want to try having sex?”
“W-wait, Leila, is this… safe?”
She strutted over to Daniel, her fluid hips wiggling, her firm breasts bouncing ever so slightly.
“Only one way to find out.” She smiled. It wasn’t entirely friendly.
“I don’t think this is a good idea…”
Leila leaned forward, presenting her pendant cleavage to him, before grabbing a fistful of his shirt and hoisting him off the ground.
“Ha! Cool!” Leila looked at her outstretched arm. It was tight and toned, but not bulging with muscle.
“You’re so strong!” Daniel choked out.
“Yeah. You like it?”
“Leila!!” he screamed, as Leila casually threw him on the bed with a one-handed toss. “Don’t you think we should take you to a doctor or something?!”
Leila’s eyes glowed. “I predict this is fine. I’ll learn on my own.” Her voice had that odd echoing tone again, as if half human.
Leila leapt on top of Daniel, long legs by his sides, pinning him in place so he couldn’t escape.
“No,” she replied.
Leaning forward for a kiss, her new, bountiful breasts made contact with Daniel’s body first. Those protruding, pink nipples scraped against his shirt, delivering painful shocks through his chest like the posts of a car battery.
Seeing Daniel grimace in pain, Leila willed her energy to lower levels. The sensation faded to a fuzzy, staticky blanket, one that Daniel was able to handle.
Leaning forward, Leila mashed her pink lips against Daniel’s, plunging her powerful tongue into his mouth against his will. That too, was accompanied by swirling electricity, the taste, slightly metallic. She nibbled his lower lip lustily with her pearly white teeth, enjoying his helpless protests.
“Mmmf! Mmf!” Daniel moaned, his limbs spasming involuntarily from being Leila-shocked.
Leila broke the kiss, laughing at Daniel’s hair which was standing up straight from static electricity.
“Is this okay?” Leila asked, running her hands over Daniel’s head, manipulating his upright strands of hair.
“Leila! Please! Can you… be more gentle with your electricity?” he quivered.
“Okay Daniel, just for you.” Her emerald eyes glowed again. “I can learn.”
Leila ripped his white tee in half with a gentle tug of her sparking hands. Tracing her fingers over his bare chest, she reduced the currents until it was a pleasant tingle for him.
“That… feels funny… and kind of good…” he moaned.
“Noted,” Leila responded clinically.
She scooted up, dragging her hardened peaks across his chest, vibrating and tracing a path of her needy currents over him. He shivered as she ground her pebbled tips into his much more vulnerable skin.
Leila kissed him again, this time lifting her body off of his and snaking her long arm down between them. She felt his erection surging, insistently poking against her strong thighs. Walking her fingertips down his body, sending a shock with every “step,” she finally traced her way through his soft, silky pubic hair and grabbed his iron rod.
With their lips still touching, she smiled mischievously as she grabbed his leaking boner and gave it a shock.
“Mmmmmmf!” Daniel’s eyes opened wide, his screams muffled by Leila’s perfect mouth.
Leila expertly aligned his leaking tip against her own canal, gently grazing his overly sensitive head with her tight, wet pink folds. Her crotchless “panties” conveniently provided no barrier for entry… but even if her intimacy was fully covered, was her conjured underwear even corporeal?
But such critical thinking was well beyond Daniel, his body literally electric from her arousal. He stared into her eyes in fear. She’d never been so aggressive before! This wasn’t really his Leila, was it?
And then she speared her hot folds over his angry length.
Leila gasped as her hips crashed down onto his. Oh, it felt so good! She had never enjoyed penetration this much before. But now, every little thrust, every nudge in her inner core… her supercharged brain unconsciously tracked and registered every movement even as she cooed in pleasure and enjoyed the sensation of being filled.
She grinded the tingling, sparking peaks of her breasts against him as she continued to pump and use him. Daniel made motions to try and resist, but Leila was far too powerful for him to overcome. She pinned him down with her toned arms, relishing the fact that her strength meant she could do whatever she wanted. He was just an object to her. To be used, experimented with, and learned from. All at her whim.
After minutes of swiveling, twisting, and pumping, Leila found herself on the verge of boiling orgasm. Every single variation in her motions riding Daniel had been catalogued away, and now she just sought her own pleasure, her entire body growing ever hotter, closer and closer to an inevitable eruption.
Lightning arced between her large, pendant breasts. Her pink peaks vibrated as they served as both a power source and a lightning rod, firing skin-raising tingling bolts into each other. Her nether lips began to involuntarily contract around Daniel’s helpless, quivering member as well, gripping him tight inside of her electrified body.
Dancing on the razor’s edge, Leila pushed herself over the threshold of her orgasm, clenching hard as she came.
“I’m… I’m gonna come…” Leila moaned hoarsely.
The lightning bolt down her torso glowed bright white as her entire body went rigid. Streams of crackling energy erupted from Leila’s hard nubs, dancing all over Daniel’s skin. As her powerful coils gripped and squeezed his pulsing hardness, she could feel the anticipation of surging energy dancing over his quivering shaft.
“Leila! Wait! Please!” Daniel begged as her beauty and strength battered him, right before he spurted powerfully inside of her.
The feeling of Daniel’s wet warmth splashing inside of her triggered her new sexual response. The wool of the blankets stood up straight, just like her luscious locks, as her body radiated an electromagnetic field. The air smelled of ozone.
Leila gushed all over him, simultaneously drenching him with her sexual fluid mixed with powerful shocks. Daniel twitched and spasmed under her body’s electric embrace, before Leila’s molten pleasure intensified even further. Her entire body transmuted into pure energy as she screamed, turning into a massive sheet of lightning that surged into the nearest socket.
The power went out in Daniel’s apartment complex. His air conditioning ceased whirring. The only sound in the apartment was his wheezing and gasping, the sound of his wet, spent, but still electric cock twitching and slapping against his torso, his body full of small electrical burns.
Leila’s consciousness surged through the city of Phoenix’s electrical grid. Traveling near the speed of light above the city via wires, even her newly enhanced mind could not process the sights and sounds. She had to slow down to know just what she was doing or where she was going.
The glowing bolt of energy that was Leila’s essence pulled itself together from the larger network of cables and surged down into a few households. All of the lights and appliances flickered and beeped as Leila possessed the devices like a modern day poltergeist. Whole families had taken the day off, gathering by their TVs only to be startled by the ghostly interference.
She slithered through the wires working her way down the street, looking for an empty home to occupy. She felt certain she wasn’t trapped in this form, but she might be very vulnerable while manifesting her physical body again. Leaping from one residence to the next, she quickly learned to examine the garage first. The automated door stammered open and closed as the garage lights flickered. No car there.
Leila bolted into the unfamiliar living room, gathering herself at a wall outlet and causing it to spark violently. Thin tendrils of electricity billowed out of the socket carving jagged paths through the air before coalescing into a bright, glowing silhouette of her new, voluptuous figure. The glowing sheet of light standing finally turned corporeal, filling out her shard-enhanced body. As the glow faded, the figure unfroze, her mind fully taking up residence. Leila could not resist running her slender hands over her bare flesh, small sparks from her fingertips painting her flawless skin with the black leather of her scandalously revealing bodysuit. Her cupped palms lingered over her breasts, small bolts leaping to them from her rigid nipples. Eyes shut, a small involuntary moan escaped her sexy lips. The world might be on fire and going crazy, but she LOVED what had happened to her!
The electric demigoddess strode through the foreign house, playing with the design of her black leathery leotard until she settled on a long, deep gap that displayed the yellow lightning bolt emblazoned on her torso. Extending her index finger and miming a pistol, she fired a bolt of electricity into the TV, smiling as it flickered to life. She cocked her thumb a few times, firing gentle strands, turning the channel to one that was more hard science than populist.
She glanced at a little tablet in the kitchen. Good enough. Two bolts from her pupils sparked that machine to life as well. Password protected. She traced her fingers over the display, her eyes glowing an opaque white as she rapidly and digitally tested password after password.
“H0mep4ssw0rd.” Naturally. Child’s play for Leila now.
She browsed the internet while she let the TV sounds wash over her. Marveling at her own speed scrolling through news articles, forums, anonymous bulletin boards, Leila was frustrated when she found her limit. Her biological brain was no match for pure, raw computational power bubbling in the electric field surrounding her physical skull. Still, she processed information at a phenomenal rate.
Images of uncontained wildfires and a handful of blazing cityscapes were widely available. She saw few signs of the fateful crystals that had pierced her mind, the icy-hot fire that had coursed through her veins—most of the impact sites only had burnt, blackened shards of the mystery material. Not bright pink-white like she’d encountered.
These so-called experts! Playing in their little worlds, never getting a big picture. Insisting on their own expertise. Only on anonymous bulletin boards did Leila find evidence that could be used to put the pieces together.
Pictures from the shores of the gloomy northeastern coast showed some images of crystals out on the docks, the beautiful, perplexing crystals still intact. And judging from the pictures of shard strikes outside of densely populated areas that the media weren’t reporting on, it was clear that the cataclysm was not limited to big cities.
Some crystals located in the rainforests with no human population, jagged formations sticking out of trees and still glowing. Those on the docks along the northeast. The weather must have put out the fires and preserved them!
And if they could spawn anywhere, and Earth was 70 percent water, then there must be a bonanza lying in the murky depths of the ocean…
Leila heard the garage door rattle open.
“Hey Mark, did you leave the TV running again?” A nasally voice nagged.
“Wasn’t me,” an annoyed voice shot back.
They walked into the home. The TV was off. Leila was nowhere to be seen. Only the tablet was left on. A sharp tang of ozone filled the air.
“You hearing things again?” Mark sneered.
“Weird, I could have sworn it was on…”
“Whoa!!” Daniel yelled as his computer sparked. Tendrils of electricity surged out of his tower, crackling loudly. His computer was turned off.
He followed those streams of light, tracing a path to his bed. Sure enough, Leila was taking form, lying on her side, head rested on a hand and cocked elbow. Daniel could swear she had an amused, almost predatory look in her eyes.
“Leila! Holy fuck! You… you just came out of my computer?!”
She began to materialize a pair of white thigh-high shorts and a figure-hugging t-shirt.
“Yeah Daniel. Crazy, isn’t it? I just surfed across Arizona’s power grid after that nice orgasm you gave me.”
“No way no way no way…”
“I know! It’s fucking wild! And there’s this… Presence inside of my head. Hungry, clever, methodical. You have no idea how fast I am at reading and browsing the internet now.”
“So… did you see the news?” Daniel asked warily.
“What news?” Leila raised an eyebrow.
“They’re saying people like you are the source of the shard strikes.”
“Yeah. These ‘paranaturals,’ they’re calling them, it’s the only explanation people have come up with for the origin of these attacks. You… you didn’t do it, right?”
“Daniel! You can’t seriously think I’ve been hiding that I’m a supermodel who can shoot electricity!”
She turned her palm upward and curled her fingers, creating a globe of electricity.
Daniel gasped at the insane feat.
“Okay, okay, sorry I doubted you. After the sex we just had, where you… shocked me…”
Leila smirked. “If I recall, you came a ton inside me.”
“I couldn’t help it!” Daniel whined. “It… you… the shocks kind of took control of my body! It felt like my nerves were on fire even as you burned me!”
“So it felt good too?” Leila smirked.
“Leila! Please, you’re scaring me!”
“Fine. But you still can’t really think I’ve been able to do this for 22 years and suddenly came out now.”
“Yeah… yeah, that doesn’t make sense.”
She flicked a spark of electricity into his computer, turning it back on.
“So, what news were you talking about? The shards? I think I already know more about that than anyone else could.” She tapped her temple.
“No, not the shards! The fact that they’re blaming you… They’re calling folks like you paranatural. They keep saying paras caused the attack!”
“So what? That’s stupid.”
“Yeah, it may be, but you should see the public response! Including the government!”
Leila gasped and quickly took a seat. “Plugging” her fingers into the computer case, she began to work out Daniel’s password.
She logged in.
“It’s pathetic, is what it is,” Leila laughed. Daniel blushed in embarrassment.
Multiple browser windows appeared on the screen, each blurring with letters as Leila fired off dozens of searches. Daniel gasped as the mouse cursor moved by itself, screens scrolling and bouncing around rapid fire.
“Oh my god! They’re locking them… us… up!?”
Footage on WeeVee showed chaos in the streets. “Paras” hurling fire from their hands, small groups of them coordinating to lift and throw buses, facing off against a heavily armed police force that was closing in around them with tear gas and riot shields.
When it was clear that these measures were not enough to contain and subdue these newly birthed paranaturals, everything escalated. Police were being severely injured and killed from attacks that their riot shields and kevlar vests were never designed to withstand. They quickly switched from rubber bullets to live rounds. A tank even rolled out onto the chaotic city streets of Los Angeles.
The carnage was brutal and bloody. Casualties on both sides rose to the low hundreds. Hospitals, if they weren’t already suffering from citywide power shortages, were filled to capacity, with nobody certain of how or where to contain people with impossible, unnatural powers. Those who surrendered peacefully were often still beaten to the brink of their lives.
Cold and calculating, Leila watched all of it unfold. She’d seen this pattern before many times in history. Persecution, intolerance, concentration camps, sub-human treatment…
Sure, it would start as a cry of national safety. Necessity. Protecting our freedoms, domestic terrorism, who will think of the children, other such bromides. So the government passes a bill to register and track every para. Just temporary, they say. For everyone’s good. Win-win, they say. And people give up freedoms in the name of security. Some paras would collaborate, go along with it willingly, thinking their good faith would be rewarded.
It would result in the way all such “temporary” overreaches did—normalized and accepted. Paranaturals in ghettos, slums, concentration camps… non-paras ratting out their fellow sympathizers. A total dystopian future for who knows how long.
No, Leila would take matters into her own hands. No more waiting for people to do the right thing. Inactivity and martyrdom were for the dead. The fingers of her hand that was gripping the computer case and driving it began to press into the metal sheets.
“Leila?” Daniel prompted, worried about his girlfriend. Her eyes had been glowing an opaque white for five minutes straight.
Leila twitched in response to Daniel’s voice, startling her out of her daydream. Her powerful fingers crushed the case of the computer, scrunching it up in her hands and shorting out the computer entirely.
“Leila!” Daniel yelled.
“Uh. Hmm?” She snapped back to corporeal reality. “Holy shit! I did that with my electricity?”
“No, you, you just… you’re really strong too! I couldn’t even move when you pinned me as we were having sex. Are… are you gonna be okay? This is really scary stuff.”
“Yeah. I’ve seen this all before. If history has taught us anything, it’s that the paranaturals need to get out. Now.”
“Leila, you know I’ll always support you…” he reached out to touch her shoulder. He was greeted with a harsh shock.
“Thanks Daniel. I know I’ll always be able to rely on you,” she responded with a perfectly calculated soft smile and a light tingling electric brush over his groin.
Leila’s phone vibrated next to her while she developed her scheme to save paranatural-kind. She waved a hand at the buzzing machine to receive the call on speakerphone.
“Hey Leah,” she answered, already knowing who it was from her digital connection.
“Leila! Are you okay? I saw that Phoenix got hit! The Gurglr building… it’s a total wreck!”
“Yeah Leah, I’m fine.” More than fine. Soon.
“Did you see that stuff about paranaturals?”
“Yeah. It’s crazy what they’re-”
“I know, right!?” Leah cut off her big sister. “Those freaks! I can’t believe they’re attacking normal people like us. What did we ever do?!”
Leila was so shocked that she actually overloaded the phone.
“Ow! Holy crap! I just got a ton of static! Hello? Are you still there? Leila?”
“Something weird is happening here, sis.” Leila fired another jolt into it. “Hey, are you there? Can you hear me?” Then she hung up.
Daniel walked back from the kitchen with a sandwich and a glass of water for Leila.
“Was that Leah on the phone?”
“Yeah. Phone’s not working,” Leila answered curtly.
“Oh really?” Daniel looked uncertain.
“Hey, get that glass of water outta here!” Leila recoiled, conveniently ending the conversation abruptly.
“Oh! Oh shit, sorry Leila.”
“It’s okay, Daniel. Just don’t let it happen again.” The lightning bolt on her chest began to crackle, the illumination visible even from under her lightning-fabricated top.
Leila had assigned Daniel the task of bringing home a few more computers for her little project. It was easier for him to go out into the city. Leila didn’t want to get questioned about her porcelain skin, a sheer impossibility in this Arizona sun.
Daniel came back with some spare scraps, low end parts waiting to be recycled. With all of the rioting and looting, it was a miracle that Daniel came back with anything at all. Leila was not upset.
But what did upset her was that government scientists and private enterprises were looking into what they called “sea stars.” Shards of glowing crystal still intact from that mysterious strike.
Damn it! Leila needed to get onto this fast before she got scooped! The one crucial piece that she had based her entire plan on revolved around harvesting these so-called sea stars before the world got its shit together.
Leila assembled the makeshift computing rigs and continued to trudge through bulletin boards, wading through all of the irrelevant crap that people posted. She’d found two posters that she was actively interrogating now, albeit subtly. They’d shared photos of themselves deep underwater on BirdTalk, completely unaided, with no oxygen tank. Plus, the two of them, one male, one female, were good-looking in an otherworldly, supernatural way. Just like Leila herself. GPS had flagged the location of their photos, so Leila was pretty certain they were for real.
And when the persecution began, they deleted their photos. But Leila was able to track it all down.
She was deep in conversation with one of them.
I dont know what
photos ur talkin abt
Fine, I’ll out myself first, SwimGrrl93.
I’m a para too.
Pls leave me alone
You can block me if you want. But I might
be one of your only allies out here.
Am not saying I am and am not
saying am not. What do you want
I want to meet. I need your help, just like
you need mine. We need to stick together.
I wont tell you where I live.
U think Im stupid?
There was a harsh rap on the door. Leila ignored it.
“Hello? This is the police. Please open up.”
Leila looked at Daniel who was busy assembling another computer for her out of barely functioning parts. Their eyes met, wide with fear.
“Daniel!” Leila hissed. “Go see what they want! Can you get rid of them?”
“Oh god, Leila! I’ll try! I’m not going to get in trouble, am I?”
“You think you’re the one they’re after!? Come on, just go!”
You’re in San Francisco. I’m coming
over right now. Don’t be afraid.
Daniel cracked the door open a tiny bit, letting the sliding lock click loudly.
“Officers? What can I do for you?” he asked warily.
“Daniel Jessem? We’re looking for your girlfriend, Ms. Leland.”
“What do you want with her?”
“We know she works at Gurglr. The company has reported her missing—we just wanted to make sure she was okay.”
Daniel tried to keep his face stony.
“I haven’t heard from her either. Can you please let me know if you find her? I’m worried about her.”
A bright flash briefly blinded the officers outside through the crack of the door, accompanied with a prolonged hiss.
“Sir, may we just come in for a moment?”
“You may not!” He huffed.
The two officers looked at each. One of them tried to peek through the crack. All he saw was an unoccupied chair at a computer desk, rotating slightly.
“Very well, sir. Let us know if you hear from her, would you? Here’s my card.”
“Good day, officer.”
Leila made the 750 mile trip through the nation’s infrastructure, hopping from wire to wire. She sent perching birds cawing away as the electrical lines wobbled under her power. After a few wrong turns, she finally sensed a dense hub of energy in a vaguely northwestern direction and headed straight for it, full speed.
Materializing in a back alleyway of San Francisco, surrounded by the stench of homeless people and urine, she checked her bearing. Near Montgomery and 3rd. Not bad.
“You’re… you’re a para!” A disheveled, slovenly beggar pointed and stared.
“Oops. Guess you caught me,” Leila shrugged. “Keep it quiet, will you?”
He nodded, never breaking eye contact. His fingers trembled, and his gaze was somewhat predatory for some reason.
Leila brushed it off and weaved an overcoat out of electricity to cover herself. It was the perfect costume for a dark, chilly, foggy San Francisco in autumn.
Strolling for a nearby electronics store to check Gurglr maps, she passed a ton of graffiti sprayed onto the walls, demonizing paras, demonizing the entire city for its treatment of paras, and all manners of vulgarity. Then she saw a poster.
“SFPD rewarding bounties for any reports of paranaturals. Please contact…”
Shit! Leila thought. She ran back to the alleyway. The homeless guy was already shuffling to the other end, no doubt to tattle on her.
She clutched her hands in front of her, summoning all of her power out of sheer panic, and flung both arms at the retreating, stench-soaked man. He froze in place, trembling spastically, before falling over dead.
Leila gasped at her first kill. But she knew that this was not any sort of great loss. She had just offed a lowly pawn that was about to topple a king. Or a queen. No sense in letting that happen. There was definitely going to be more bloodshed before this was all over. At least, that’s what she kept telling herself. She wasn’t sure what was more disturbing: that she could almost believe the strange chess rationalization, or that it had been so easy.
She made her way back to the main street, finding herself seriously weakened after unleashing her deadly projectile. The city was spinning. She was trembling. Her overcoat flickered in and out of existence.
Leila heaved, feeling nauseous. She was so close. Which direction was SwmGrrl92’s house again? What street was she on? Leila stumbled on the sidewalk and fell to her knees on the sidewalk next to the thin, tall apartments of San Francisco before blacking out.
Leila awoke in completely unfamiliar surroundings. It’d been so long since she’d been home. Her sluggish brain struggled to acclimatize herself, searching for nearby outlets in case she had to make a quick escape.
“You! Are you ‘At Leila Leland’?!” A tall, fiery redhead approached her with a bag of chips and a mug of water.
“Yes… feel weak…” she uttered. She really did, but she played it up.
“Here, have some of this.”
“No!” Leila panicked, arcing electricity glowing at the edge of her fingertips, fizzling into nothing.
“Fuck! You really are a para!”
“Please… take me over there…” she pointed at a wall socket.
“There?” Her savior began to reach for Leila’s body.
“Wait! Wrap me up first!” She wasn’t sure what would happen if this supposedly water-based paranatural touched her.
“Fine, fine. Geez. I’m helping you, aren’t I? I’m Sarah, by the way. SwimGrrl92.”
Sarah fetched some blankets, came back to the couch where she’d deposited Leila, wrapped her up, and easily lifted her with a fireman’s carry. She walked to the nearby wall socket, completely unencumbered.
“You’re strong too?” Leila asked.
“Yeah, guess so.”
Sarah placed the ghostly pale Leila on the floor. “Now what?”
Leila immediately jabbed her finger toward the open outlet, sucking up much needed electricity. The entire block began to suffer brown-outs.
“Oh my god! You’re electric!? Fuck, keep that away from me! I can’t tolerate electricity at all anymore!” she winced as Leila continued to drink deeply.
“Mmm… “ Leila moaned, the energy flowing into her better than any sex. Her nipples began to vibrate, discharging little shocks as her skin regained some color.
Sarah just stood and stared at the awkward scenario.
Leila let the blanket slip off her shoulders. Her skin was smooth again, no longer clammy and sickly. Even the large swells of her chest perked back up, no longer sagging under their own weight. She sighed in relief, licking her lips as she finished her meal. Leila surreptitiously sent a jolt through the power grid, strong enough to be traced to their location, but only surging to overload the grid in another part of the city so that Sarah would be none the wiser.
“Do you mind, uh, putting on some clothes? I’ll get you some…” Sarah tried to avert her gaze. But she didn’t really want to.
Leila snapped her fingers. A pair of tight jeans literally painted themselves on her with electricity, coupled with a tight, cream blouse.
“Damn, that’s cool…”
Leila finally got a good look at Sarah. It was hard to tell under the native San Franciscan’s penchant for dumpy clothing, but it was clear that the redheaded aqua was no slouch in the looks department herself. She’d dismissed that aspect of news reports about paranaturals being physically attractive, chalking it up to humanity’s incessant obsession and jealousy of appearances, but even Leila’s deep learning-enhanced mind couldn’t deny the longing in her loins.
And she could see that Sarah was gobsmacked by her own lovely appearance as well.
Another pawn in Leila’s game. Well, perhaps a rook.
“So I’ve showed you mine,” Leila announced her vulnerability. “What about you?”
“Me? I’m really good with water.”
Sarah walked to the kitchen and turned the faucet, letting the water flow.
“Impressive,” Leila snarked.
And then Sarah stuck her hand underneath the stream. But the flowing water didn’t just drip off her hands. No, it turned into a fluid ring, swirling around her hand in a thick stream. Sarah turned off the faucet and manipulated the water at will, turning it into various mundane shapes.
“Okay, that is impressive.” Leila corrected herself.
“For people who just met, you really are a smartass, you know?” Sarah smirked as she continued to contort the water like a rhythmic gymnast would ribbons.
“So you can swim underwater too? Hold your breath and such?” Leila interrogated. This was important.
“I don’t have to hold my breath. In fact, I’d probably pass out if I tried. No, I can breathe underwater just fine. The bottom of the Bay didn’t seem to bother me too much either. But I haven’t gone that deep. It’s too dark to see.”
“How fast can you go?”
Leila smiled wide. This was perfect.
“Have you seen any of these?” Leila conjured a hologram of that fated crystal that had “pierced” her mind. It hovered in her sparking hand, turning 360 degrees for Sarah to examine.
Sarah grimaced. “Of course I’ve seen those. I was catching waves in Half Moon Bay when the whole thing happened. We got lucky, being near the ocean and all. I passed out, and when I woke up, I found myself deep underwater, surrounded by the things.”
“It’s my theory that these crystals harness incredible energy if they don’t immediately melt themselves. I’m going to build a safe haven for people like us. I’m certain I can tap into the energy,” Leila ping-ponged an arc between her two outstretched index fingers, “if I just got my hands on it. But I can’t handle the water. You understand?”
“Yeah, I got it. But isn’t this crazy? You and I just look like normal humans… okay, you, paler than most. Why don’t we, just, you know… pretend. Pretend we fit in.”
“And be a second class citizen? You think you won’t get found out? You think this is justice?
Police sirens wailed outside. A megaphone clicked and echoed.
“Citizens beware. We have information there may be paranatural terrorists in this vicinity. Everyone, come out with your hands up. This is for your own safety. You will not be harmed.”
Sarah’s eyes opened wide in fear. The water she was holding like a globe suddenly splashed all over the carpet.
“What the fuck!? Why are they here!? Are they doing witch hunts?”
Sarah and Leila watched from their third floor perch. The police were knocking down locked doors and dragging peaceful people out onto the pavement, ordering them to kneel with their hands behind their heads. They looked anything but unharmed.
“You see!? You think you’re safe? I don’t think it’s safe here for a normal human, let alone a para!” Leila hissed.
“Shit shit shit! What do we do?!” Sarah panicked.
“Show me your phone,” Leila answered calmly. She had it all planned out.
Sarah pulled it out of the pocket of her baggy jeans.
“Can you use it underwater?”
“Make your way here!” Leila fingered the display, marking the location on the map. “It’s New Ireland! Can you do that?”
“Easy peasy. But what are we gonna do there!?”
“If it’s not a problem for you, gather up any crystal shards along the way. Just leave them underwater near the islands where only you can get to them.Don’t encumber yourself though! I’ll meet you there soon!”
The sound of a gunshot echoed through the neighborhood, followed by distant screams.
“Okay! Fuck! Leila, I’m so scared!”
The police had opened the outside gate and were knocking on the door.
“Police! Open up!”
Leila electrified the doorknob, resulting in the sound of a spasming, gurgling officer on the other side of the door.
“You’ll be okay. Just do as I say. It’s more than electricity with me. I have something in…” she tapped her temple. “Trust me. We’ll be okay. Now, can you get out of here?”
Sarah nodded with a whimper. She opened the back window to the house, climbed out the fire escape, and leapt three floors down into a tumble and ran for it.
Leila turned electric and made her way through the dense power grid to the airport.
Leila took control of an idle private plane in her pure-energy form and sent an SOS back to SFO, acting as if a pilot had been forced to fly a paranatural against his will. She landed in Hawaii, only to be surrounded by cop cars. But they were still playing by the old rules and found nothing but an empty plane as Leila jumped to another. She ended the similarly peaceful second leg of her journey with a deliberate crash landing on the island where she’d directed Sarah, rematerializing on the beach far enough away from the ocean waves to be safe. Standing there in the nude, her enhanced body was on full display to Sarah once again, who eagerly drank in the sensual sight of Leila’s beauty. She was sitting on the sands nearby, still dressed in her frumpy city clothes that were perfectly dry. A small pile of multi-hued crystals lay next to her.
“Nice work,” Leila remarked, pleased with her new friend’s power and obedience. The comment was enough to snap Sarah out of her beauty-induced stupor.
“Impressive landing,” Sarah quipped as she tried to play it cool. “Now what?”
“We talk to the local government. Ask them to take us as refugees. Promise them… these. And my services.” Leila’s lightning bolt emblem glowed.
“Is this legal? I barely know you, and I can’t believe I’m doing these things! Maybe if we go back, everything will be okay…”
“No, I don’t think it will.”
The roar of five fighter jets grew steadily louder as they approached.
“What… what are those…?” Sarah asked in fear and disbelief.
“Military aircraft!” Leila snarled. Evidently she hadn’t been as discreet as she’d thought. Lesson learned. But it did help make her point. “I told you they were never going to play nicely with us!”
“Leila! What do we do!?”
Leila thrust her hand forward and fired a dense bolt of electricity. It traveled high into the air until it grew thinner and thinner, dissipating in the atmosphere.
“Fuck!” Leila huffed.
“Leila! I don’t wanna die!”
Mounted machine guns whirred out from the hidden chambers of the aircraft.
“Sarah! Get in the water! If you get deep enough, they can’t shoot you!”
Leila let Sarah run down the beach before making her move. Two of tThe jets opened fire, strafing bullets into the ocean, correcting their aim toward the shore. Sarah pushed ahead even faster, her powerful legs digging deep into the sand and thrusting her body forward. With a heroic head-first leap, she plunged into the water just as the bullets whizzed by.
Seizing the opportunity, Leila made a beeline for the shards that Sarah had gathered. As the jets changed their target, Leila began to crackle and spark, turning into pure, shimmering energy. She touched the crystals with her electric tendrils, sucking in their otherworldly energies as her own form began to glow a tinge of pink.
“Oh my god!!” she cried out in ecstasy. The whole world looked infrared to her shard-enhanced abilities, the large shells headed her way tracing a red streak through the air.
With one hand channeling the energies of a crystal, she raised her other arm and directed it toward one of the jets. A thick sheet of energy erupted from her open palm, enveloping one of the jets, shorting out all of its circuitry and killing its pilot. It began to spiral into the ocean.
With a fling of her arm, Leila scattered the rest of the crystals outward and morphed into pure energy, flying through the midair shards.
Rematerializing briefly, she called out.
She hoped against hope that Sarah could hear her plea deep underwater. She was not disappointed.
A huge fountain of water surged from up from the ocean’s surface, shoving a jet straight up into the air and flooding their engines. When the gush receded back into the ocean, it dragged both planes down with it.
The pilots wised up, realizing that they had to get away from the water. There was simply no way they could deal with a paranatural in her natural habitat, firing deadly accurate aquatic artillery. They headed for the shore.
Two more waterspouts chased after the two attacking planes, weaker than before. Either Sarah couldn’t muster the same force, or the distance was too great, or perhaps manipulating two was more attention than she could handle. The watery streams impacted the planes, but caused no serious damage.
No matter. The closer range allowed Leila to fire concentrated energy right at Sarah’s water spouts, using it like a guidance system. The electricity swirled through and around the fluid columns, disabling both jets entirely. Both pilots managed to eject, parachutes deploying, leaving them sitting ducks. Their flying machinery crashed into solid earth, expensive engineering crumpling into a huge wreck.
As they floated serenely back down to Earth, Sarah reappeared on the surface of the ocean. She surfed back to shore, riding an enormous wave with nothing but her bare feet. It dissipated behind her as she skimmed along the surface of the water like a skipping stone. She watched Sarah land on the shore, all of the moisture detaching from her hair and her clothing.
It was a shame. The electrifying woman wanted to see more of Sarah’s wet clothes clinging to her voluptuous curves.
Leila whistled in appreciation. “That’s fucking cool.”
“Oh my god! What you did with your electricity! I could feel the prickling energy from down in the depths! Fuck, you’re strong!”
“Let’s get these two guys. Alive.”
They approached the helpless floaters, but one of them detached his parachute and fell fifty feet through the air, landing into a tumble to absorb the impact.
He stood up, completely unharmed.
“Wait! Fuck! He’s… he’s a para!”
“Get on your knees and surrender,” the tall, muscular pilot announced.
Sarah uttered a shaky, struggling moan, legs wobbling, before they gave out. She fell to her knees in supplication as she put her head face down on the sandy floor, arms outstretched and palms flat.
The soldier’s command echoed in Leila’s mind, trying to impose its will upon her. Her sclera glowed white and opaque as her AI enhanced brain quarantined the soldier’s command in a tiny loop for later study.
She blinked her eyes. When they reopened, her bright green irises radiated with power.
“Oh, fuck! You, there. Attack your friend!”
Sarah bolted upright and with a grandiose sweep, built a huge wave on the ocean.
But Leila was quicker. She reached out and gripped Sarah’s arm, sending a jolt of electricity through her mind-controlled body. She shuddered and lost consciousness, twitching as she collapsed.
The wave collapsed back into a puddle.
“You! Surrender! Surrender now!” The pilot screamed in panic as he drew his gun.
Leila zapped him unconscious as well. And the other floating pilot who had just landed and was begging for mercy.
Heading back for Sarah, Leila squatted and stole a chance to trace her fingers over Sarah’s firm, succulent body. She couldn’t resist stealing a kiss as well, enjoying the taste of her new complementary ally’s soft, full lips.
Leila extended her tongue, running it across those fleshy folds, before delivering a gentle jolt to reinvigorate Sarah.
“Mmm…” Sarah moaned as she regained consciousness. She began to lean into the kiss subconsciously, but the electricity shocked her back into full awareness.
“Leila! I… did I attack you!? Sorry! I didn’t want to… I just… I couldn’t help it!”
“It’s alright, Sarah. Looks like life is going to get interesting here…”
“I, Leila Leland, declare New Ireland a safe haven for all paranaturals! If you find your way here, you will not face persecution from your so-called fellow humans who have forsaken their humanity!”
“Thanks to our sea star harvesting, we have ample renewable energy at our disposal. True, renewable energy! We are building a paradise for the forgotten, the oppressed, the ones who the world has decided are not worthy of being treated as thinking and feeling human beings.”
“They deny it, but they have attacked us with their military, and we have found their forces wanting.” Leila’s eyes glowed and sparked. The camera cut to the two prisoners they had taken.
“They are scared of us, brothers and sisters! They are no match for us!”
“To my loved ones who I left behind, know that I think about you every day, and I _will _be reunited with you one day.
“To all the fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters out there reshaped by the shards, free yourself from your shackles and join us!”
Daniel stared at the TV in disbelief. He never thought Leila could possibly behave like this.
Would he truly see her again? Would he even want to?