With the beheading of Olympias, I thought our troubles had come to an end. But life goes on and life is always full of problems. Political problems. Relationship problems. Lifestyle problems. Right now, my problem has to do with the power that I possess. The Erika problem. Apparently, I’m more of a problem for them than they think they are to me. Well, considering the way things ended with Praneso, I think they may be right. And while it’s not fun to be kept in a glass box-like thing—a larger than life squarish snow globe if you will— to await a decision that threatens to change my life entirely, what really is getting on my nerves is how they are keeping Ms Pink away from me for fear of ‘dubious influence’ or whatever they deliberated to term it as.
The smile that Ms Pink gave me is the last I saw of her before the Feds swept over the two of us and took me away from Ms Pink and I’ve not gotten another look at her ever since. I’ve been trying to call Ms Pink through our ‘telepathy’ for the past hour or so (a rough estimation since I don’t have a watch) but I haven’t managed to get a response from her. This silence is unsettling to say the least. It worries me when the one thing that lets me know Ms Pink is okay doesn’t work. And as a result, I am barraged by a ton of questions I cannot answer.
Is Ms Pink unconscious again?
Is Ms Pink even alive?
Did they do something bad to Ms Pink?
Are they taking care of Ms Pink?
When are they going to let me out?
Looking around at my surroundings, I sigh. There isn’t much. Just a bed, a bathroom (with walls of frosted glass for privacy) and a tablet. At least, the bed the Feds provided in this glass jail is more comfortable than the one in the cell they threw me in before. And the tablet has a collection of movies and tv shows that I can watch—for as long as the battery holds out. I guess, being the Erika comes with some perks, and not just pitfalls.
As it turns out, being stuck in a glass jail is not the deepest pitfall. Try being stuck in a glass jail and asked to be intimate with Ms Pink. For research. A giant mirror is being moved to one side of my glass jail as I read the letter that came with the sandwich and packet of fruit juice they put on the floor through an opening on the side. Unfortunately, the opening closed before I could ask any of the burning questions I have and this letter is creating even more burning questions in my mind.
Does this mean Ms Pink has recovered?
Is Ms Pink agreeable to this?
What do they mean when they say ‘intimate’?
Is this Ms Pink’s idea? Did she think of this so that she can see me?
The letter goes on to say that a panel of Feds will be on the other side of a one-way mirror to witness the intensity of my power. So the ‘mirror’ is in fact, a one-way mirror. Talk about awkward and embarrassing. Am I expected to do all the things I do with Ms Pink in the bedroom with full knowledge that there will be an audience watching? Are the Feds mad? This is an invasion of our privacy. Surely Ms Pink won’t allow it. Or will she? A blanket of cold, cold dread settles over me. The letter also tells me not to worry about Sunny. They’ve sent her a message from my phone to tell her I’ve gone on a short vacation with Ms Pink and will be back after the weekend. After the weekend? Does this mean they intend to hold me in this glass jail for days?
The Federation emblem looks a lot more menacing all of a sudden.
The door opens. I can hear it opening. I can also hear the footsteps coming towards me. Ms Pink’s scent invades my nose and I want nothing more than to hug her and check that she’s okay, but I keep my eyes shut.
“Wake her up.”
A cold hand shakes my shoulder. Darn it. Ms Pink’s touch is irresistible. I let loose a grunt and turn over, opening my eyes just a little. “Good morning.”
“It’s time for the experiment,” says Edith. She nods at Ms Pink and turns to leave.
Edith is now my least favourite person in the world.
“Taeyeon.” Ms Pink’s eyes are on me but mine follow Edith as she disappears behind the one-way mirror. I know who the others are. All eight of them. Here to watch as Ms Pink and I put on display what is precious and private to us. “What’s the matter.”
What’s the matter? Are you really asking me this?
Are you shy?
I could blow up a mountain with my frustrations right now. No. I’m not shy. But I don’t want to share our moments with anybody else.
They’re only watching.
No. Tell them that if they want to see how much power I have in me, they’ll just have to dig it out of me themselves.
Taeyeon, I’m telling you to do it.
And what if I hurt you again? Wh-what if I k-kill you this time? My lips are trembling. My entire body is trembling from the rage and fear inside. How can Ms Pink be so callous? How can she care so little for herself? And me?
You won’t. You didn’t kill me when you came and you didn’t kill me in that blast of anger either.
Do you really want me to do this? Us? Together? On display?
We have to if we want to get out of here.
They’ll let us out?
Stupid human. Would I go along with them if there’s nothing in it for us?
“Ms Pink . . .”
Ms Pink’s words wash over me like bee stings in a tub of dark molten chocolate. Fine. I hold Ms Pink’s gaze with a fierce glare of my own and pull the baggy blouse the Feds gave me over my head. They didn’t give me any underwear so tugging down the equally baggy pants leaves me in the nude. It is the weirdest thing to know that a panel of eight are seated right behind the wall outside, looking in on us. It makes me fidget. But to my surprise, it also makes me a little fired up.
Each breath that I take grows increasingly longer and deeper as Ms Pink sheds her clothes too. Off comes the pink coat (it must be new since there are no blood stains on it) and the black blouse and pants inside. Her innerwear is a pretty pink lacy bra and panties set. A set that I wouldn’t mind seeing more of—on Ms Pink, I mean. Those are soon strewn across the floor like unwanted rags.
And so it is. We are naked. Ms Pink and I. May the fire burn us all.
Her lips burn me first. Her hands stop mine from reaching around her and hold them down to the sides so the only sensual point of contact is our lips. Yet, I am already burning. It’s like a fever that threatens to burn up your mind, this feeling of pure, absolute heat roaring on the inside. She flips me onto my back without warning and climbs over me so that all our audience can see are the top of our heads. I am somewhat aware of this move of hers and I am grateful for it. Ms Pink, my heart swells for her even more now.
The burn leaves my lips and travels down my jaw to neck. Oh God, I’ll bet my lips are swollen now. Ms Pink is like a lioness! Teeth test the elasticity of my skin and I groan when her tongue seeks to sooth the pain. Ms Pink is grinding on me now. I can feel—oh God I can feel . . .
“Tae—” Ms Pink gasps in between biting her way down to my breasts, “—yeon.” Another bite. My temperature spikes. “You’re mine.”
“Yes, I’m yours,” I cry out, feverish with overwhelming emotions surging up and down, everywhere.
Hands slide down my abdomen, over my hips, under my ass, between my legs.
I whimper when her fingers find me. The real me. Nestled inside a place that no one else has ever explored. A place that only Ms Pink knows like the back of her palm. A dark, warm, moist place. My hips buck when she really finds me. She knows me so well. Her fingers are playing me like a fiddle, bringing me to the place she wants me to go. She knows. And she’s not taking any detours. Now I get it. This is a quickie. I should help her.
Ms Pink hovering over me. Her husky voice. Beautiful brown eyes. And the smile. I think about the little smile she gave me. Just for me. Only me.
“Ms Pink!” I scream, almost blacking out but staying conscious, just barely.
Ms Pink is slammed against the wall by an invisible force and I catch a wince just before she falls back onto bed with me underneath. Then, she is off, grabbing her pink coat and pulling it on.
“Taeyeon is not lethal,” says Ms Pink, her pink eyes trained on the one-way mirror.
I catch sight of our reflection in the mirror and look away, embarrassed. Ms Pink’s bite marks are beginning to show up in red patches on my skin and I look thoroughly worked over—a fact that is harder to swallow when there’s an audience. Research or not.
Edith steps out from behind the one-way mirror and says, “We will deliberate over this. In the meantime, you are allowed to stay with your claim.”
Ms Pink nods. “I wish to stay with my claim.”
“Very well then. We will see you both soon.”
I can barely wait till all eight of them and the mirror are gone. But when the last of the mirror disappears and the door is closed, the dam inside me collapses and I hit Ms Pink with fists that don’t care where they’re landing. Of course, Ms Pink ends up holding my wrists away, pulling my arms behind my back.
“Taeyeon,” Ms Pink minces through her teeth, “get hold of yourself.”
Tears fall at last. Big drops. “I-I c-can’t,” I sob. Even with Ms Pink’s arms locked around me, I can’t.
Ms Pink hauls me onto the bed and sits with me in her arms. I am inconsolable. I am bawling like I’ve never cried in my life. My insides feel weak. The walls around me are closing in on me. I am trapped.
“They’ll let us go. They will.”
“What if they don’t?”
“Then I’ll threaten to shoot myself.”
“Don’t!” I scream as more tears roll down my cheeks. “I hate this. I hate the Erika. I hate—”
“Shh,” Ms Pink hushes me and turns me so that she’s cradling me in her arms like a baby. “Shh . . .”
“Ms Pink . . .” my voice is coming out in bits and pieces, “please don’t die . . .”
“Shh, you’re in shock and your mind is breaking down but you’ll be fine. Taeyeon, do you hear me.”
I shake my head. I can’t take anymore of this crap with the Feds or the Sovereign or the Parliament. Super-fucking-naturals. I’ve had enough of them. I just want my life back.
“Stupid human, you don’t mean that.”
“I do. I mean every word. I want my life back.”
“You can’t. You’re the Erika.”
“Take my Erika away. Take it out. I don’t want it.”
“Taeyeon, you possess the potential for great power. Do you know how many of us would kill to be you right now?”
“But what’s the use of having so much power if I can’t even have sex with the person I love without hurting her?”
Ms Pink stares down at me, lips pursed. For once, she has no reply to my question. Anger surges within me and I push her arms away, getting out of her embrace to sit up on the bed.
“I nearly killed you. Have you ever considered how I might feel about that fact? I don’t care that I killed Praneso, okay. But I brought you so close to death,” I raise my thumb and index fingers, holding them up with a tiny gap between, “so fucking close. What would I have done if you had died, huh? How am I supposed to live the rest of my life knowing that I killed the first woman I ever loved?”
Ms Pink remains silent. She does not touch me. Nor does she look at me. Instead, she looks straight ahead into the distance. She blinks twice. Exhales. Then she says, “You’re the only one.”
“What do you mean?”
“Only you can kill me. I won’t let anyone else kill me.”
“Is this some kind of sick love declaration? Because it’s not working, Tiffany.”
The pink in Ms Pink’s eyes intensifies for a moment then subsides. “Taeyeon, you are my cl—”
“I think we’ve gone way past that line, don’t you think?” I stare hard at Ms Pink, daring her to disagree. “I’ve come to realise that my feelings for you are not under the influence of your ‘charm’. And I’ve come to realise that you’ve been spoilt by all the claims who couldn’t resist your ‘charm’. But our relationship isn’t like that. You’re not blind enough to miss it so you must be in denial.”
“I’m not in denial. I have accepted that our relationship cannot be any other way.”
“What do you mean by that.”
“I am who I am. And you are the Erika. If you are not my claim, nobody in this world will allow you to be with me. I told you this from the start.”
“Yes, back when you thought I was just a bait.”
“That doesn’t change anything.”
“It changes everything.” Anger is coming through my nostrils as I speak. “I am not a bait. I am the Erika. I am immune to you. The Feds would have figured that out by now. They’re not going to let us be, claim or no claim.” The reality dawning upon me at this very moment angers me even more. “And I’m not going to let a bunch of people tell me I can’t be with you.”
“Taeyeon . . .”
Subconsciously, our hands reach for each other and our fingers interlace as though they were always meant to do so.
“Call me Tiffany.”
Ms Pink looks down at our hands and fiddles with my fingers. “No one calls me Tiffany. I want you to be the only one who calls me Tiffany.”
I blink at the speed of light and I’m not sure if I’ve finally lost my mind to hallucination. “Are you serious about this?”
Pink eyes burn into mine, melting my heart and soul. “None of my claims could ever resist me. You’re right. They didn’t stand a chance. But you. You are unaffected. You, out of a billion humans on Earth, are my equal. But I am still stronger than you, physically. So you still have to listen to me or—”
“Or you’ll spank me?” I ask with glee.
Ms Pink flips me onto her lap face down and slaps my butt. It’s a hard smack but her caressing palm makes me purr. Then, she spanks me again—a lot harder—and this time I yelp.
“Okay, okay, I’m sorry. I’ll listen to you.”
Ms Pink flips me back onto the bed beside her and smiles. Again. I could get used to this. “It’s fortunate you are a quick study.”
The moment of pure joy Ms Pink gives me doesn’t last when the surroundings remind me of the reality we are in. “Ms P-T-Tiffany, what’s going to happen to us?”
Ms Pink takes my hand again, holding it as we sit side by side on the bed. “The Federation will come up with a satisfactory answer for us. A few of them owe me favours and I’d been saving them for when I finally take my revenge but since you’ve killed him for me, this is the time to call for returns.”
I heave a huge sigh. “The Federation is totally unreliable and corrupt.”
“Like most governments in your world,” Ms Pink scoffs. “How do you think I managed to bring PINK into the international market? Greasing a few palms never hurts.”
“I’m not sure what my feelings are about dating a morally-corrupt-centuries-old woman.”
“Nothing a little spanking won’t put right.”
“Not everything can be fixed by spanking.”
Ms Pink’s eyes gleam pink. “Don’t worry your stupid human head over this. I have many other methods to fix you up.”
Suddenly, I don’t know what to think anymore. “Ms Pink, I mean, Tiffany,” I say as I throw my arms around my princess vampire, “are we really going to be okay?”
Arms pull me into a tight embrace. “Keep calm. Or you’ll lose your mind.” Ms Pink pats my back and I feel better. “Don’t be afraid. I’m here with you.”
Ms Pink’s promise and assurance. More precious than treasure. And I have them. I’m a lucky girl.
Pulling out of the hug, I lay on my back and send an invitation with my eyes. Ms Pink smiles. It’s a tiny little smile, but a smile nonetheless and that’s enough to fill my heart with joy. She lies beside me and our hands find each other again, our fingers settling quickly into the place they belong.
“No matter what happens, we’ll stay together, okay?”
“Stupid human. Of course we will.”