There's lost treasure and buried treasure, but no such thing as abandoned treasure. To reach their goal and provide passage, John must use his wits, his talents, and his uniquely suited magic to defeat the guardian.
John waded into the water. The bottom fell away quickly in the channel, causing the water to rise from his ankles to his knees in a few steps. Then it was at his waist and he was glad the Sunset Isles were so far south so that the water was warm. A few more steps and he neared the first of the rocks breaking the surface almost like pikes set to deter riders.
The water ahead of him began to move. Some turbulence beneath the surface soon took on a current and circled in on itself. It would have been a whirlpool save the water in the center rose up instead of sinking down into the depths. John stopped, the water just above his hips, and watched as a shape began to emerge from the amorphous mass.
A head emerged first at the top and then the water swelled and contracted, forming a neck, shoulders, and arms. A torso followed, the water quivering before settling on a buxom shape that was highly detailed. The figure continued to take shape below, with the water separating into two legs all the way to the feet, which stood atop the water. Like the water sprite's chest, it was anatomically correct and highly detailed, save for a complete lack of body hair.
While John waited the figure's skin took on an aquamarine color, solidifying quickly and leaving him in awe that just a few heartbeats before the beautiful creature before him had been formed of water.
She stared down at him with wide eyes and a light twist of a smile to her lips. "You resist us, why?"
John shook his wonder from his head and smiled. "We cannot breathe underwater, we would drown."
"You have strange magic," she said. "We have never drank your magic before."
"I'm afraid it's not something I can part with," he said. "My friends and I seek passage beyond, will you let us?"
She smiled. "Passage beyond... you're not the first to come here. You are the first to speak with us though."
"You turned the others away? Sent them out into the ocean between those islands behind us?"
She smiled. "You are clever, for a human! Some went there. Others resisted... they entertain us now."
John fought to keep from shivering. "I see. We wish you no harm. We will tell no one of your people or of this place, either, if you'll let us pass."
"And if we don't?" she asked.
"You'll threaten us? Insist you can harm us?"
"No," John said. "I've no interest in that. I want to come to an agreement with you. I wish you no violence."
"You surprise me, for a human. It has been a long time since one has shown such restraint and wisdom."
"Oh? How long?" John wondered.
"Over a hundred years," she said.
John's suspicions were nearly confirmed. "Was that Billie the One Eyed?"
Her lips parted. "You're learned as well! Did you come for Billie? Are you here to take up his agreement with us and free him?"
"Free him?" John asked. "Is Billie a prisoner?"
"No, not a prisoner, a guest."
"Then why would I need to free him?" John asked.
"Passage requires an exchange. For every time we raise the waters someone must come to stay with us."
"Wait... you mean... you let people past but someone has to stay with you? Underwater? Don't they drown?"
"Oh no, they live a wonderful time with us until another takes their place. Then they return."
"Oh... and you have Billie now?"
"We do. He's been with us a very long time. Longer than any other. I fear he's grown tired of us, but it's no matter. His service ends at sunrise tomorrow and we will return him to the surface then."
"He's still alive?"
"Of course, he has not aged while he is with us. Such was the terms of the deal."
"Wow," John breathed. "That's amazing."
"It was most gracious of us, but Billie charmed us."
John's thoughts were racing. He glanced back at the others but Steff and Zynga were talking while Red paced the beach. They were easily within earshot but none of them paid any mind to John or the water sprite. More magic, no doubt.
He turned back to the woman and said, "So if we wait until tomorrow morning can we pass?"
"If you share one of your number with us as a price for passage."
John frowned. "I can't make that decision... is there any other way?"
The water between the water sprite and John became agitated. It roiled at the surface as something beneath moved toward him. John fought the urge to panic and held his ground, just as he held his magic at the ready.
He felt a tug as a current of water brushed against him. It swirled around him and between his legs, teasing his skin with the flow of the liquid. He felt himself beginning to thicken from the extra attention the water seemed to pay to his manhood.
"Let us drink of your magic. Satisfy us and we will grant you passage."
John's chest swelled with pride. Looking at the beautiful blue-green woman in front of him made the offer very tempting. He had no doubt he could satisfy her, but she's said us. "Us? How many is us?"
"I am the chosen of my people," she said. "I have taken a form pleasing to you, have I not?"
John didn't need to look down in the water to know that he found her very pleasing. "Yes, you are very beautiful. "Is that it then, when I satisfy you we may pass?"
She smiled. "Yes. Once you have satisfied me."
John's eyes narrowed. "Half a moment... Once I've satisfied you? Are you hard to satisfy?"
"I have experienced many things for many years. You smell different... I hope it will be some time before I've had my fill of you."
"I see, and if I can't satisfy you?"
"Then you will stay with us until you have... or your term is up."
"A hundred years?"
John swallowed. He turned and looked back at the others. Red wouldn't wait more than a day. Steff might, but Red wouldn't let her linger long. Zynga... well, as long as John wasn't dead Zynga would remain. Saints knew what trouble she'd get into though. But what of his Mistress? Beytrixxa had been vexed when he'd gone a week without communing with her. A hundred years would do more than upset her, she'd most likely retake her gift from him and... well... he didn't know what that would do to him.
But it was Mistress's gift that so intrigued the water sprite. The magic was different than theirs, but both seemed to work in similar ways. She wanted to drink of him, which meant tasting his magic and, no doubt, trying to make it their own. His magic was not to be taken though. It belonged to Mistress and it was his job to protect and nourish it.
The magic burbled within him, eager and ready.
John lifted his chin, which put his neck at a sharp angle since she was already standing on the water he was waist deep in. "I accept your terms... and I want to warn you that—"
"You would threaten us?"
"No, it's not that kind of warning," John assured her. He turned and tossed his spear up onto the beach. She relaxed and nodded for him to continue. "Before the sun rises you will have had your fill of me and you will grant us passage."
She smiled. "That is the agreement. When we are satisfied, you will be allowed passage."
John nodded. "All right. My name's John, by the way. So how do we do this? On the beach or—"
The water sprite turned into water and collapsed into the water in a great splash. John gasped and then felt the current surge against and around him again. The sprite returned, her head breaking the water first and then the rest of her aquatic hued skin rising until she stood in front of him. John noted he was slightly taller than her, but by no more than an inch or two.
She took his head in her hands and leaned in to kiss him. John stiffened and then relaxed as her warm lips touched his. Her lips parted, drawing his out, and then he sampled her tongue. She tasted of the sea, but it was a fresh and invigorating flavor, not one filled with salt.
"Breathe," she said even though her lips were captured in his.
John wasn't sure what to make of it when her lips sealed tight to his and water poured from her mouth into his. His eyes shot wide open and he struggled against her, anxious to break free. His magic rose in him, ready to aid him in his fight.
"Breathe," she said again even though it was impossible that she could talk. Her mouth was busy and there was no air, just water!
John quelled the panic in his chest and sought his center. The magic simmered but let him take the lead. Even with all the training he'd endured, forcing his throat to relax and allow him to breathe in water was the hardest thing he'd ever done. His body jerked, rebelling against the unnatural, and only her grip on him kept him from collapsing and trying to cough out the water.
Several mini-convulsions later John realized he wasn't in pain. He wasn't suffocating or drowning or dying in any sort of way. The water sprite continued to let water flow in and out of his mouth, filling his trembling lungs with a unique sensation. As he calmed down it became soothing almost, though his lungs struggled against the pressure inside of them.
"Come," she said again. "Swim with me."
John let her pull him forward while she fell back. He fell into the water and then they were moving, slicing through the water like fish. She held on to him as she pushed, pulled, or swam through the water. He had no idea how she did it, but they shot forward and then down, diving deeper and deeper. With the water around him the pressure in his chest faded. He could see too, though the water turned murky as they descended.
Fish swam around them, some in schools and others hunting for stragglers. Plants rose, long leafy vines floating and swaying in the water while she took him deeper and deeper. She slowed and circled a bright bed of multi-colored plants and rocks. They were coral reefs. Beautiful and majestic. Enough to take his breath away, if he hadn't already lost his breath.
Then again, he was breathing water now. His mind struggled around the concept but he let it go. Normally he'd needed to understand the why and how of such a thing to accept it. His life was anything but normal these days though. He was less a student of magic and more a creature of magic. Perhaps he wasn't so different than Zynga or even Mistress these days? Or this beauty of the deep that was settling him amid a large bed of swaying tan colored tendrils.
The short tendrils tickled his skin as he lie down on them, caressing him and offering to make him comfortable. It made his hammock seem like a constrictive torture device. Especially when the sprite settled onto him and lifted her face from his.
John stared up at her, marveling at how her blue hair swayed in the water above them. He grinned, captivated by her beauty. Far above them the surface of the water sparkled with sunlight casting rainbows through the water and giving the sprite an otherworldly glow about her.
"Are you ready, John?" she asked. "You smell ready."
John wasn't sure how she was smelling him but it didn't matter. He was more than ready. His manhood ached as it was pressed between the bodies. Just as it had ached when the water had flowed around it and tickled him mercilessly. He slid his hand down to her hips and guided her up and into position so that he felt his tip slide along her smooth skin and into the cleft of her part.
She ground against him and threw her head back, making her hair float even more wildly in the water. He slid her hips forward and found her entrance. Her lips parted and he felt her body tremble in his hands. She arched her back and changed her angle, forcing him into her. There was a moment where they remained stuck and then the pressure gave way as she was split apart.
He heard or felt her grunt, he wasn't sure. Her insides were so warm they were hot. Hot and liquid, yet firm enough to clench and squeeze all along his length. John's eyes flew open as he realized he'd sunk fully into her on their first try. That had never happened before... she truly was a magical creature.
She writhed and bucked against him, milking him for all he was worth while her head was tilted up and her mouth open. John was mesmerized by her beauty and the simple fact that he was making love to this magical woman on the bottom of the ocean floor! That was... it was unimaginable. An impossibility... yet there he lay and there she was, grinding atop him and drawing him far too quickly towards the brink.
John shuddered and clenched down. He'd lost control and nearly finished already. Before her, no less, which would upset Mistress greatly. Not because she cared about another woman's pleasure, but because that meant he would be giving up his power instead of taking his partners. John found the magic inside of him and worked with it, unknotting the tension and pressure and then using it to bolster himself and prevent him from embarrassing himself.
Worse even than a premature ending, the success of his quest depended on his performance. Red, Steff, The Red Witch... they were all counting on him. If he let the water sprite take charge and overpower him, he knew he'd never recover. She would continue to drain him until he lost himself and ended up imprisoned as her pleasure slave for one hundred years.
Okay, so it wouldn't be a terrible fate... but still, he'd made promises to people and he had to obey his Mistress. Not to mention his own goals.
Resolute and in control of himself again, John's hands found their way to the sprite's hips. He grabbed on to them, jerking her out of her all consuming pleasure, and took control of their union. He drove himself up while pulling her down, changing the nature of their coupling to something more forceful and direct, instead of the way she'd been grinding his will down with the inexorable patience of the seas.
She grunted in the water again, and then continued to do so as John pressed his advantage and rutted into her like a man possessed. Her hands squeezed his chest and shoulders, trying to gain some purchase and renew her control. John shuddered in the water and threw her hands off. Before she could recover he pushed off the coral and spun them in the water. He captured her head in on hand and pulled her to his face, kissing her powerfully.
The sprite refused to give in. Her legs wrapped around his hips and she seated herself fully on his cock. She squeezed along his length, rippling up and down while her pelvis rocked and shifted against him. They landed on the coral again, this time she was on the bottom and John on top.
He pulled his head back and smile at her. On hand went to her breast and took a firm grip. The other rested on the aquatic toadstool and gave him leverage to begin thrusting his hips again. She clung to him with her legs at first but the power of his thrusts soon unlocked her legs. She slipped a little and then a lot. He pounded into her then, driving her into their makeshift bed over and over. Her legs swayed in the water as he spread them wide and prevented her from trying to control him again.
John stared into her beautiful green eyes as he pounded himself into her. His magic was up and he was in control now. She finally tilted her head back and closed her eyes. Her mouth was wide open and he could see currents of water rushing in and out of it. The same as if she'd been breathing air, he supposed. Her body was trembling under him and he felt a strange vibration in the water.
John's magic was gathering again, eager to spread and envelop her. He struggled to keep up his pace while restraining it. The aggression reminded him of... he'd almost done it again. John growled in the water, drawing a quick look from the sprite. Her eyes were wide and the green in them barely showing now. His growl had frightened her. Frightened, or excited? She clutched at his hips with her hands, urging him on instead of trying to control him.
Before he lost himself in her again, John bent the magic to his use. He leaned down and kissed her even as he drove not only his cock inside of her, but a rush of magic deep into her pussy and through her womb.
She convulsed in his arms, the magic connecting her to him and opening her up. He knew her more intimately than ever then. Her pleasures and pains and her wants and needs. She contracted and drew into herself and then burst when she could retreat no further. She was aware of him. Aware that, somehow, he had broken through to her. The shock and the knowledge that she could do nothing overwhelmed her and forced her to explode.
As much as she'd spoken of drinking him, John now drank of her pleasure. Her energy flooded into him, pouring in and letting his magic feed until it could feed no more. Still it came, pouring in from this creature that had lived hundreds or thousands of years. John felt himself tingling and then burning as her life force filled him beyond the point he could contain it.
He roared in the water, terrifying fish nearby and causing her to clutch at him. There was too much power. He couldn't handle it all. If he did... he'd surely die. It would burn him up as surely as swimming in the crater of a volcano.
She clung to him again, her legs somehow having locked around him. John shook but couldn't break free. He had no choice. No way to escape her clutches. Even as he was draining her she was killing him.
He broke the locks that held him in check. His cock swelled within her and then erupted, pumping his scalding essence into her. The magic already in her combined with the magic in his seed and overwhelmed her again. She cried out and fell back onto the bed while he sprayed desperate blast after blast inside of her and filled her full beyond her longest memories.
She collapsed at last, defeated, broken, and at his mercy. She lay still, her body too tired even to quiver.
John pulled himself free of her and saw their juices clinging to his length in the water. He pulled himself up and grabbed her head before demanding, "You wanted to drink me, taste me now. Clean me."
She opened her mouth and let him guide himself into her. Her lips and tongue slowly gained motion and sucked along his used flesh, cleaning him and then she even suckled at his tip to remove any that remained. John had to pull himself away from her when she showed no sign of stopping.
"Saints of the deep," John muttered as he sat beside her and tried to catch his...er... breath? Catch his water? He didn't know what to call it now.
She turned her head to take him in. She studied him, eyes moving along his form and then finally coming to rest on his face. She locked gazes with him and asked, "What are you?"
John chuckled. "I'm just a man."
"You're no man like we've ever known. You smell human, but you have a great power inside of you."
"I do now, at least," John said and winked at her. It was true. He wouldn't be surprised if his eyes were glowing he had so much power. "What about you? There was more to you than any one person I've ever been with. More life force. More energy."
"This is my form," she said. "Our form."
"Our... wait, there's nothing natural about this form to you, is there?"
"No. It is not. You know us. You saw."
"I saw? Oh..." John trailed off as he cast his mind back to their frantic coupling. He'd broken through her defenses, his magic catching her off guard and overpowering her. Not just her, but what she was. Us wasn't entirely true... she was one being, but she'd claimed countless others over the years. Some like her, but many were surface dwellers she'd trapped. That was before her agreement with Billie though. He'd trapped her in that so that she couldn't claim any more lives... she could only feed on them until they were released.
"You're not evil," John mused.