Secrets of the Dead 02
Author's Note:See first chapter note for warnings if you didn't read them last time. Pic Credit: Kay Morgan
“Ophelia.” I glanced to the side and saw Celia motioning toward the candles section. “You have a visitor.”
Following her line of sight, I saw one Shasta’s coyotes, in human form, browsing the isles with the occasional glance in our direction. It was Miwok, one of a handful of people in the train that were from the same American Indian tribe that Shasta belonged to. However, unlike her family, Miwok was rather short. He had the same black hair that is indicative of the tribe, but somewhere along the line I was guessing that there was some Caucasian blood mixed in. He just didn’t have the right features for a full-blooded Indian.
“Just because he’s a thercoyote doesn’t mean he’s here to see me.”
Celia raised an eyebrow at me and my shoulders slumped.
“Fine, he’s probably here to see me. I’ll be right back.”
Setting aside the sales manifest I was breaking apart, I exited the cashier’s stand and pulled my hair behind my shoulders. Miwok saw me coming and shuffled to the closest corner so we could have a modicum of privacy.
Ever since I met Shasta almost two years ago, she had made it a point to bring a number of her coyotes to Redferne’s. At the time, I had no idea that she was already planning to make advances toward me for the position of Head Dog to her Queen Bitch. Meeting each member of the train was one of the mating rituals. I found that out when I was seventeen and was doing my final research paper on coyote trains.
Shasta was the one that suggested the thesis to me one evening when we were out with a number of them at the movies. I thought I was just being friendly with the local supernaturals. An Arbiters job is a lot easier if she is familiar with them. Shasta made herself and a number of her train available for interviews. It was during one of those that I finally figured it out; I was being courted.
Of course, by that time it was too late to do anything about. Shasta had chosen me for a number of reasons, which I’ll go into later, but two of the biggest ones were that I was a Redferne witch and thus powerful, the other was because she loved the fact that I hopped bodies like most women change clothes. I guess it was the novelty of having several lovers in one.
When I closed in, Miwok’s face and shoulders relaxed. He really didn’t like the city too much. There were just too many people for him to drop his guard. Coyote’s, by nature, are skittish and would rather avoid confrontation. That doesn’t mean they’re cowards. They just like to avoid unnecessary fights. Another thing about them is that they are very affectionate toward one another.
Like it or not, Shasta’s train knew she was courting me, so they acted accordingly. Even if I wasn’t a coyote, they treated me as one, because they thought I would one day be her mate and thus one of them.
Miwok leaned in and kissed me lightly on the lips before brushing my cheek with his own. I felt a small amount of blood rush to my cheeks with embarrassment at the familiarity. He was slightly taller than me, but like almost every other coyote, acknowledged me as superior to him.
“How are you, Miwok?”
He smiled shyly and nodded. “Good. Shasta wanted me to come by and drop this off. We’re all looking forward to this weekend. We’ll, most of us anyway.”
He handed me a small parcel wrapped in a hide of some sort. I undid the single piece of twine that held it closed and unwrapped package.
“I heard you and Carolyn are becoming mates; congratulations.”
His shy smile widened to a bright grin as he brushed away the hair covering his left ear. There hung a platinum ring in a helix piercing. It was the traditional sign that a male has been claimed. Once the mating takes place, a daith piercing follows as a sign that the male is taken. Platinum or gold is used the since most supernaturals have an allergy to silver.
“Nice,” I said as I was genuinely happy for him.
The only reason I had gotten away without being pierced with the helix was because I wasn’t a coyote. If Shasta has her way, that won’t be for much longer.
Once I had the package unwrapped, I found out that it was a leather bound journal and quite old.
“Since you weren’t brought up in a train, Shasta thought you might need this. It’s sort of a courtship and mating guide so you’ll… um, know your duties. It’s so you’ll be prepared. A few of the rituals get kind of complicated.”
I tried to give him a polite smile. “I haven’t accepted her offer yet.”
“Believe me,” he said. “I know. Her mother was loud enough last night to let everyone in a half mile radius know.”
I winced. “Ohh boy.”
“She doesn’t care, Kenny….”
“I go by Ophelia when I look like this.”
“Oh right, sorry. Anyway, Shasta has been putting her off for two years already. Another week won’t make a difference.”
That was a point of contention with her mother. Traditionally, when the firstborn female takes a mate, they spend all their free time getting pregnant. Once that happens and the child is born, if it’s a female then the Queen bitch can step down and the princess bitch takes over the train. Her mother was quite impatient to retire.
I had to put down a laugh, because this was serious business with the coyotes. They all took it as a foregone conclusion that I was going to say yes to Shasta. It was like there was no other way for the story to end. Granted, I really like her. She’s smart, beautiful, strong, exotic, and most of all dominant. She was everything I wanted in a partner, except for the coyote bit. Plus, I might be starting something with Leo and I kind of wanted to see where that was going.
Shasta accepted me and all my idiosyncrasies. She liked me as a male and as a female. Leo hadn’t even begun to scratch the surface.
“Ophelia,” Celia called.
I noticed that we were starting to get busy.
“I gotta get back to work.”
Miwok nodded and leaned in for another kiss and a brush of cheeks. “I’ll see you Friday. Good luck.”
“I thought you were interested in Leo.”
I shrugged at Celia from across the table as we enjoyed our lunch. Considering we needed the energy for the day, each of us filled our plates with a mound of spaghetti.
“I’m beginning to think he’s more trouble than it’s worth. He’s known me for how many years now and he still hasn’t picked up on the fact that I’m a witch?”
Celia twirled several strands of pasta with her fork and threw me a look. “You know normals dismiss what isn’t right in front of them.”
Even when we all came out of the closet to end World War II, people tended to invent other reasons for supernatural events occurring. Vampires were either photophobic or surgically altered goths acting out; werewolves were suffering from an excess of testosterone or clinical lycanthropy. I blame it on supernatural romance books.
After being bombarded year after year with Dracula, Anita Blake, Bella and Edward and a plethora of other characters that romanticize supernatural creatures, I’m not really surprised that very few people actually believe.
Most governments are in the know, along with a good number of civil servants, but unless it’s right in their face, most people are content with their apathy. We’ve been hiding ourselves for so many years that it’s second nature to keep doing so.
“You’re still considering Shasta’s offer?”
I groaned with a mouthful of pasta then swallowed. “I like her.”
“And you don’t mind turning into an animal for her?”
“It’s not like that and you know it. Therianthropes keep their intelligence with the change. Besides, I’m supposed to hang out with the train this weekend and see what life is like.”
I paused before taking another bite. “What? What’s hmm?”
She gave the question a dismissing wave. “I’m just thinking about how much time you actually spend being Kenny. Since you’ve been able to control your magic you’ve spent ninety percent of your life as a girl. If you mated with Shasta that’ll change.”
“She doesn’t mind. She swings both ways.”
Celia chuckled. “That’s not what I’m talking about. You’ll spend every free moment, when you’re not with me, trying to make the next generation of coyotes.”
“I am a witch, you know. I can make a fertility potion better than most.”
She licked her lips and tried not to laugh. “So you’re telling me that you’ll be mated and not want to have sex with your wife? Pull the other one. She’s twenty-three years old and you’re eighteen. I think you’ll be making stamina potions before anything else.”
After swallowing another bite I pointed my fork at her. “That’s only if I accept her offer, which I haven’t.”
Celia rolled her eyes. “Give me some credit. So how long is this train retreat supposed to last?”
“Friday night after work until Monday morning.”
She grimaced. “Make sure your shifts are covered.”
Considering what Celia had to say about my tendency to ignore my male side, I decided to forgo my regular evening as a girl and instead returned Georgina and Grandma Helen’s items to their rightful places. That didn’t mean I had to indulge in a manly pastime. When I made it to my room, I prepared a nice perfume-laden bath, some soft lighting, instrumental music and the journal Miwok dropped off.
Eye opening didn’t describe the contents well enough, but I will tell you that it made refusal of Shasta’s offer that much more difficult. The rituals and general behavior content of the coyotes played on almost every fantasy I had. Granted, relationships aren’t based solely on sex, but that is a definite perk.
Once those were explained to me I saw a breakdown of what a male and female could expect in a typical mating. It was like living in the fifties only the genders were reversed. The good thing was that they kept up with the times. Even though a male had to expect on taking care of the home for their female, their opinion counted. They weren’t just window dressing and sex objects.
I admit it, I was starting to break. Who was I kidding? I was barely holding on by my fingernails.
Setting the book aside, I picked up my razor and tried to distract myself with shaving my legs. Yes, I was still in my male body, but once you experience smooth skin at its finest it’s hard to go back to the hairy stuff.
Once I had that finished, I felt decidedly on edge and realized that Celia might be right. I preferred to be female. I don’t think it was because I hated my male body or anything that drastic. It was probably because I just felt more at ease, more natural in a feminine role. Everything was as it should be when I was one of my ancestors, pretty much any of them.
With that thought in mind, I donned my satin robe and slippers before heading back down to retrieve Great Aunt Lillian’s bracelet. If I was going to be a girl on my off hours, I thought it best to look as much like my male self as was possible. Call it a rationalization if you want.
When I made it back to my room, I went through my traditional grooming procedures and then went to my dresser and retrieved a silk cami and short set for the evening. My goal – I was planning it out as I go – was to stay in one body for the entire week, Lillian’s to be specific.
She was shorter than my male self, standing at five-five in height, with curly blonde hair that dropped to the middle of my back, and she had a nice figure. It was nothing voluminous since her hips were rather small, but she made up for it in the breast area with a generous C-cup. The best thing I liked about her was that she had fuller lips than I normally possessed. Granted I could almost meet their volume by using a lip plumper in conjunction with dramatic application of a lip pencil, but it was much more satisfying if I didn’t have to.
Just as I was about to slip between the sheets a quick two-knock sounded at my door and I heard Celia’s voice.
“Kenny? You have a visitor.”
I stuck my head out my bedroom door with surprise. “Who is it?”
She saw who I was and smiled. “Leo. Was this planned?”
Tying off my robe, I fluffed up my hair to make sure I looked nice. “No. I planned on staying like this until I left on Friday. I’m trying something out.”
Celia looked thoughtful for a moment. “Well then, do you want to see him?”
I thought for a moment about the odds of Leo finally getting his head unstuck from his butt and then nodded. “Sure.”
She opened up the door and waved him down. The sound of his shoes clopping at a semi-quick pace echoed in the hall and then slowed before he appeared. Leo was wearing a pair of linen shorts and a tight tee. It was pretty attractive on him. He wasn’t muscle bound for sure, but the uninterrupted line of his torso let me know that the hardness I felt under his shirt two nights previous didn’t hide any fat either.
His eyes lit up when he saw what I was wearing, which wasn’t a whole lot of anything. The satin robe barely covered the lower portions of my butt, exposing my smooth pale legs and bare feet. I waved him in and motioned to the couch.
“Hey, um, thanks for seeing me,” he said nervously.
I waved a hand at my outfit. “Sorry about my lack of clothes. I was getting ready for bed.”
Somehow I doubt that he was offended. Celia smiled at me and closed the door behind her as she left.
“So, what’s up? Cressida said you came by last night.”
“Uh, yeah, she’s kind of…”
Leo chuckled. “That’s one way of putting it.”
I sat down on the couch, angled toward him, and crossed my legs so that my painted toes were mere inches away from his calf.
“We’re really close. You might say that she’s my alter ego.”
Silence sat between us for a few moments while I’m sure Leo was building his courage.
“I wanted to say that I’m sorry about Friday night.”
He looked up at me and I just cemented my face in a blank stare. It was best to not show emotion if he was simply going to break off ties with me. Some people didn’t know how to act when confronted with an uncomfortable situation.
“Anyway,” he said. “I didn’t stop because I was afraid or anything. I just thought that we should talk to make sure we were on the same page, because…”
Leo stopped again and looked down.
“Because, what?” I said.
He sighed. “It’s embarrassing.”
I smiled in sympathy. “Leo, Friday wasn’t the first time I’ve looked like that, and as you can tell, I’m still presenting as a girl. So, if it’s because you’re attracted to a boy that looks like a girl then I think it’s a safe bet to say I’m not going to rib you about it.”
He shook his head. “No, that’s not it. I mean, yeah, I like you. It’s just…”
It was like pulling teeth. “Tell you what, just tell me straight up and I promise I won’t be mean. Otherwise we’re going to be here all night.”
Leo pressed his lips together and looked away. “I wanted to see if your aunt would help me like she helps you.”
Okay, I wasn’t really expecting that one. “I’m sorry; what?”
His face quickly progressed to a very reddened state. “Look like a girl, I mean. It’s… I wanted to see what I’d look like as a girl.”
Out of all the things he might have said during the course of this discussion that was absolutely the last thing I thought would pass his lips. At no time did I ever think Leo was interested in exploring his feminine side.
I licked my suddenly dry lips and then grinned. “I want you to know that I’m not poking fun at you with this next question. Okay?”
He nodded, still not looking at me.
“Okay. Are you serious? You want to look like a girl?”
Even though he was dressed lightly and the air conditioning was working fine, I noted a thin sheen of sweat starting to coat Leo’s forehead as he nodded.
“So, you wanting to stop and talk the other night had nothing to do with having sex with a boy that looks like a girl?”
I paused and hoped he wouldn’t have a mild heart attack as I pondered this new development.
“I have a few questions for you, and I want you to look at me when you answer them.”
It was obvious that he wanted to groan out loud, because I was drawing this out so much. However, he did turn and bravely face me. Points for him.
“I need to know how far you’ve gone in the past and how far you want to go in the future.”
Once he saw that I was taking his request seriously, Leo relaxed a little.
“When I was ten or eleven I… raided my sister’s closet. It’s been on and off again since then. But when you told me that you’d go to homecoming with me I haven’t thought of anything else. For two weeks straight I’ve been dressing up. I even went out and bought some makeup, but I kind of suck at putting it on.”
With a nod, I encouraged him. “So, you like dressing up?”
“It’s not just that. You looked so good… you still do….”
I took a chance in embarrassing him more, but it would answer some questions for me.
“Are you wearing anything of your sister’s right now?”
Leo glanced down, shamefully, but nodded.
The proverbial moment of truth presented itself, so I ran with it. Lifting up off the couch, I moved into him, capturing his lips with mine. I reached down to find him already stiff under his shorts. He jumped at my touch, but I simply deepened the kiss and worked at the button and zipper until I had him freed.
Leo groaned in my mouth as I worked him harder and harder before breaking our kiss.
“I can make you into a girl, Leo. Would you like that?”
He nodded against me and reinitiated our kiss, which pleased me even more before I straddled his hips and moved my billowy shorts aside. I wasn’t wearing any panties, so it was easy enough. Just talking to Leo about the possibilities made me wet for him. Holding him and rubbing the head of his shaft against my clit made me even wetter.
Trailing kisses along his cheek, I closed in on his ear and then bit down lightly on his neck just underneath as I maneuvered him to my entrance.
“Do you want to be inside me, Leo?”
“Oh, God, yes,” he gasped.
“That’s all I wanted to hear.”
With that, I lowered myself, taking him inside me at an agonizingly slow pace. Even with my brazen attitude, I was still a virgin, but that didn’t last for much longer. There was a sharp twinge as I pushed past Lillian’s painfully intact hymen and then froze. My body shuttered at the feeling and I had to stop or scream out in pain.
Normally I would imagine that most women really don’t like the feeling of being torn down there, but like I said at one point regarding Shasta, I’m not like normal girls. In a sexual relationship, I prefer to be submissive. I also prefer there to be a little pain. Not too much, mind you. I wasn’t a masochist, but that sharp pain followed thirty seconds later by a dull throbbing was just what I was looking for.
“Oh, God, Kendra, you’re so tight.”
I was pleased that he remembered to call me by my feminine name that I relaxed and whispered in his ear.
“Now, don’t you wish that you would have stayed around Friday night?”
Needless to say, Leo didn’t last too long, but it felt so very satisfying to feel him release inside of me. We stayed in that position, kissing until gravity and the normal male post-coital response made it impractical to continue.
“I need to go wash up. You want to stay the night?”
I already knew his response since technically it was a school night.
“I can’t. Mom would have a cow.”
When I felt him drop away, I winced slightly at the abrupt closing of my opening.
“Are you okay,” he asked in a worried voice. “I know we didn’t have any time for you to prepare.”
With a grin I backed off until my feet dropped to the floor. My knees were kind of wobbly, but I felt energized at the same time. Leo glanced down at the mess we made and his eyes went wide.
Leaning in, I kissed him again. “You broke my hymen, Leo. It happens like that to virgins.”
He blinked several times at that in serious confusion. “But… but… I thought you were…”
“That I was a boy? I am… sort of. I’m a witch.”
His face went dull for a moment. “A witch?”
“All the stuff back in World War II was true… is true. Vampires, werewolves, pixies, magic, it’s all true. People just have a hard time believing it unless they see or experience the results for themselves.”
The blank look never left his face, so I tried to direct it on a different tangent.
“If you want, I can prove it to you right now.”
Leo’s mouth opened as if he was going to say something, but it closed right back up again. I motioned to the panties he was wearing under his shorts.
“Are those your sister’s?”
He looked down and covered himself, but he nodded. I smiled and leaned over as I stuck my hand down his shorts and sent a pulse of magic through the lingerie and into Leo. He jerked and I watched as his body shifted into that of his sixteen year old sister, except it was the seventeen year old version. Her not so generous breasts swelled under the tee and Leo’s waist thinned. His body shrunk several inches and when it was almost complete, her hair lengthened and straightened out until it was past her shoulders. Sorry about the pronoun usage, but it’s kind of difficult sticking to one gender descriptor when they change that quickly.
Leo appeared stunned and then her hands jumped up to her pert breasts.
“I’m a girl!”
From what I remember of Shelia, the voice was the same, but the hips were a little curvier. Leo shot up off the couch and I watched as her shorts dropped to the floor and her right hand between her legs.
I grinned. “Explore a little. I’ll be back in a couple of minutes after I clean up.”
Leo looked like she was experiencing nirvana as I left the room and grabbed a different set of nightclothes and some panties. There was a reason to wear them now. I’d have to wear a liner after having my vagina freshly christened. On the plus side, I’d never have to go through that again in the other bodies. Once the hymen was lost in such a way, it wouldn’t reappear even if I body hopped and stayed celibate for the rest of my life. Magic is odd like that.
Once I had a tampon secured and a liner in place, I felt comfortable enough to return and finish the evening off.
Leo had her shorts back up and from the look of her hips she wouldn’t have much difficulty keeping them up.
“This is awesome. How long can I stay this way?”
I shrugged. “Until you take the panties off. Once they leave contact with your skin then the magic will slip away. That’s why I wear the bracelet, so I don’t have to worry about it.”
She appeared confused, so I explained. “You can change into any relative with a direct connection to your bloodline, like parents, grandparents, and so on. I normally make it a habit not to use items from people that are still living, because that’s an invasion of their privacy, but since I just wanted to show you that magic’s real, I figure just the one time is okay.”
Leo nodded along with what I was saying, like she could understand putting limits on mimicking bodies. “So since all my grandparents are living that would mean I need someone older… would an aunt work?
I nodded. “Up until three generations, past that sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t. Not a lot of people have saved things that far back.”
“My mom has two sisters that… well they aren’t alive anymore.” She paused and a frown dropped over her face. “I guess I shouldn’t sound happy about that.”
I smiled understandingly. “It’s okay. I get it.”
“Anyway, um, just a piece of jewelry or something like that and I can be them?”
“Sort of. Leo, you’re you. No matter if you are male or female. Their DNA is inside you. All you’re doing is rearranging it. Think of it like being their identical twin sister. You’re still you.”
She nodded and then noticed the time. “I have to go… damn.” Taking a step forward, Leo leaned in to kiss me, but stopped. “Oh, I guess you wouldn’t want to kiss a girl.”
With a laugh I met her half way and gave the new female Leo a very nice kiss good night, but before I let her go I held on to her hands.
“Something you need to know. Now that you are using magic, especially this way, you have to be careful. No breaking the law and blaming it on your sister tonight or else Aunt Celia gets involved.”
I nodded. “She’s like the supernatural police and she’s brutal if she has to be. Take my advice: go straight home and play around a little if you want, but make sure it’s in the privacy of your own room then take off the panties. I’ll be more than happy to help you out if you want to change into someone else for another time.”
When I woke up the next morning I was sore. While I might have thought I was ready to have sex, I wasn’t. Girls take a tad bit longer to get ready than guys and I’d take that into account for the future. I didn’t spot because I was using a tampon as well, but I ditched that and just used a liner just in case.
Since we were going to be cleaning up and restocking I chose to wear a pair of stretch jeans and a pink cami along with a pair of pink Converse All Stars. After all the dressing up I just felt like slumming it for a while.
Celia was pleasantly happy about my choice of body and clothing as she was carting in several boxes for the displays.
“Have fun last night?”
I nodded with a cheery smile. “On the plus side, I’m not a virgin anymore. On the minus side, Leo just wanted me for my makeup skills. But we had fun.”
Her shoulders slumped. “Oh, honey, I’m sorry.”
“There’s nothing to be sorry about. I’m glad it was him. You can’t go wrong with a friend as a lover, even if it was just the one time.”
While I fetched a box cutter from under the counter, Celia unburdened the dolly. “So, he’s a crossdresser?”
“I guess. I mean I didn’t psychoanalyze him or anything, but he was more interested in what I could do rather than what we did. It’s not a big deal. I still have Shasta and that would have been a major hassle choosing between the two of them.”
Celia came to an abrupt halt. “Since when have you decided that you want to be her mate?”
I’m sure my eyes bulged at that inadvertent slip of the tongue.
“I haven’t… er, not really anyway.”
She sighed. “Kendra, your love life is your own. I’m not going to say you can’t do anything. I just want you to think about what it is you’re doing, because once you go coyote that’s for life. There’s no divorce.”
“I know,” I said with reservation.
“And I’m sure you also know that men are treated like women used to be in the old days before liberation? They do the cooking and cleaning. So until the brownies fine you and move in, you have to do everything. Another thing is you’ll be the arm candy.” She leaned in and stressed the next fact. “They’re also submissive in bed. You’ll be satisfying her needs more than your own.”
My cheeks burned with embarrassment as she had finally found out my secret. “I know.”
Celia stood erect again and placed her hands on her hips. “Is that what this is about? Honey, you know you can find a dominant girlfriend or boyfriend out there in the human world or even amongst witches.”
“I’ve known Shasta for a couple years now, and I trust her. I know she loves me and I really like her. I’m just…”
Her eyes narrowed on me. “Call her. I want to talk to her today.”
“I’m the Arbiter, and if you have any desire to become one in the near future then I need to make damn sure that you aren’t being lead around by your hormones.”
I put the box cutter on top of the counter and came back equally as strong. “We’ve already talked about it and Shasta doesn’t have any problem with me enforcing the laws if any coyote breaks them. I’d never compromise myself like that.”
She pursed her lips. “Call her anyway. I need to meet your prospective mate if she’s becoming part of my family.”
Retreating to the office in the back, I picked up the phone and dialed her number by memory. The line rang three times before she answered.
“Hi, Shasta; it’s Kendra.”
Her voice switched to the smooth sexiness I’ve always known. “Hello, pet. Miwok said that he dropped the information off for you. Did you have a question about the contents?”
I smiled at the thought of some of the things included in the journal. “Um, no. It’s all pretty straight forward. I was calling… Celia wants to meet you.”
“Yeah… I… we were talking about…”
“Mmm, I love to hear you when you’re nervous, pet. Enlighten me on the topic of the conversation.”
After I licked my lips, I took a breath and let it loose. “About me accepting your offer. Celia wants to make it clear about my duties as an Arbiter when the time comes.”
I could have sworn that I heard her breath catch somewhere along the line.
“Am I understanding you properly, Kendra Redferne? Shall I bring the first ring along with me? Sadly, I shouldn’t change you until the weekend due to control issues; that is unless you would like to spend the entire week with me.”
As attractive as that sounded I had to decline. “Um…” I swallowed. “Go ahead and bring the first ring.”
“It’s about damn time!” I heard in the background. Apparently Shasta was visiting her mother. Thercoyote hearing is quite acute when focused.
“Mother! Don’t ruin this moment for me,” Shasta replied, quiet perturbed.
A few seconds later I heard a door slam and there was silence on the other end of the line.
“I’m sorry, pet. My mother gets a little over-exuberant at times and I’ve been waiting two years to hear you say those words. Now,” she breathed with relief. “When would your aunt like to meet?”
“Um, now would be great if you have the time.”
“I do. I will also bring Miwok and Carolyn along. They will be a perfect example of a healthy couple in a new relationship. I don’t want there to be any misunderstandings, but then again if you’ve read the book then there shouldn’t be, should there?”
“I understand everything; it’s Celia that needs to… I don’t know what she needs, but she needs something.”
It took them about an hour and a half to show since they were coming from the Bear Creek area on the outer west part of town. Celia kept the store closed for the day so we could get everything back in order, so at least I didn’t have to deal with customers while this was going on.
Shasta greeted me with a deep kiss and then brushed my cheek with hers. Greetings between mates are a little more involved if there is time. There’s an inhaling of scents and flirtation involved that they don’t experience with other members of the train. Afterward, I greeted Miwok and Carolyn with brief kisses and cheek brushing.
Celia just got a handshake.
There was one notable difference between Shasta and I. Once I was finished greeting the other coyotes, my potential mate set her arm across my back and had at the curve of my waist, possessively. Since I was a lot shorter than her in my current body, it was a pretty natural movement. Celia noticed it right away.
“I think this would be better served in the Arbitration room.”
I winced at that. In that room, meetings like this were covered under law and that meant no posturing. That undercut Shasta’s power and position. It was obvious that was the reason Celia insisted on doing it there.
Shasta gave her a thin smile in return. “Arbiter, this is an internal matter of the coyotes that does not concern any law within your domain. If you simply want to use the room so I can assure you of my good intent then I’ll abide.”
Celia frowned slightly, but nodded and escorted us to the back. I intentionally slowed our pace so Shasta and I could have a few private words.
“She’s just worried about me. Please don’t be hard with her.”
Shasta leaned down and kissed me lightly. “For you, pet, anything within my power.”
Celia took her chair in the middle while Miwok set two across from her at the table and then he and Carolyn stood to the side behind Shasta.
“May I assume Kenny will be taking on the traditional roll of Head Dog?”
“When he is wearing his male face and I am pregnant, yes,” Shasta answered and that stumped Celia.
Shasta smiled widely. “Kendra and I have spoken at length. I have reassured her that her Arbiter duties take precedence over her duties to the train. I also know that when she takes her place among your ranks that her base form will be female.”
Celia nodded. “That’s right.”
“Let me reassure you, Celia. I have no wish for a weak mate. Kendra has kept me at my wit’s end, chasing her like the men of my train chase after the strongest woman. It is a humbling experience and I admire her all that much more because of it. I will lead our train, but Kendra will be my most trusted advisor.”
That seemed to confuse Celia even more. “I thought all men were submissive in a coyote train.”
Shasta glanced at Miwok who stepped forward. “Arbiter, we are, as you say, submissive. It is a fact of life that women are emotionally and spiritually stronger than men. They are the creators of life, but please don’t confuse our home life and mating habits with our day to day life outside the home. How coyote men act with their mate isn’t indicative to their behavior outside the train. Sometimes they are submissive there as well, but it doesn’t happen often enough to call it a rule.”
He looked over to Shasta and with her acknowledgement stepped back and set his head on Carolyn’s shoulder.
“I expect Kendra will work here as she always does,” said Shasta. “She will train with you to be an Arbiter and when she becomes one she will fulfill all of her duties. However, she will live in my home…” Shasta stopped and looked to me lovingly. “Our home and she will be my mate. What goes on in that home is not for you to know unless she feels like sharing. She already knows what to expect, do you not pet?”
“I do,” I said.
Celia nodded. “Very well. Then I’ll stay out of it. It’s your decision, Kendra.”
“Carolyn,” Shasta said with a tone of command.
The girl stepped forward and set a small zippered pocketbook on the table, opening it right after, and then slid it in front of Shasta. Looking down I noticed there were several platinum rings inside, all with tiny designs on them and some with little baubles hanging. Shasta chose a simple ring and then opened up a Velcro pocket to remove a sealed piercing needle.
“With the first ring, Kenneth Redferne, presently known as Kendra, I declare before witnesses that you are mine to pursue. Whoever is in your past or present is no longer of any concern, because there is only me. Do you accept this and bind yourself to my pursuit?”
I looked up at her and grinned remembering the first words to the mating ritual with pleasure. “Shasta Windrunner, in front of these witnesses, I willingly accept your challenge and will deny all others until you make me yours. I accept your first ring.”
With that I tilted my head to the right and pulled my hair out of the way. Shasta placed the needle at the highest point of my ear and quickly pushed it though the cartilage. It stung, but with that minor pain I knew I was finally getting on with my life. A few moments later and the ring was in place, letting every thercoyote know that I was not to be approached as a potential mate. There were several more rituals in the future, but this was one of the most important, and I was kind of looking forward to the rest of them without a whole lot of trepidation.
While I was saying goodbye to my new suitor, Celia was opening the restocking boxes and Miwok and Carolyn were waiting in Shasta’s Jeep.
“Will you come to my home tonight, pet? I have an overwhelming desire to claim you.”
I grinned at her playfully lecherous gaze. “I’ll have to be at work by nine tomorrow morning.”
She shrugged with a smile. “You might be walking with difficultly, but you’ll be here. What time does your shift end?”
“Four. I’ll need about thirty minutes to gather some things so I can get ready in the morning. Oh, do you want me to be a boy or a girl tonight?”
“A male, pet, but you need not change until we reach the house, and you won’t need any male clothing for any reason.”
A tingling started ramping up between my legs at the thought. “Okay.”
She leaned down and kissed me deeply, palming my butt and lifting me to my toes as she did so. When I dropped back down I almost swooned at the feeling of her possessiveness.
Shasta ran her hand through my hair, baring my ear and her ring with satisfied smile. “I will pick you up at four-thirty.”
Once she drove away I went back inside and locked the door. Celia was looking at me like I’d lost my mind.
“You do realize that you’ll be a coyote soon.”
I shrugged. “I’ll deal with it.”
“You do realize that when you turn into a coyote you’ll be spending an inordinate amount of time sitting there licking your balls.”
“Eww! Stop it!”
I worked extra hard making sure we were restocked and cleaned up before we opened the store at four in the afternoon and I rushed downstairs to grab an outfit and stow away enough makeup and toiletries to prepare myself for the next morning. I also went ahead and stuffed several other clothes in the pack to leave there so I’d have something if I needed it.
By four-thirty I was back upstairs and kissing Celia goodbye before dashing off to meet the low rumbling sound of Shasta’s motorcycle. I nearly bounced in her arms, kissing her and then brushing our cheeks together, taking in her woodsy scent. She tied my bag down and gave me a hand up on the back before assuming her position with my hands around her middle.
An hour later we pulled into a small subdivision owned entirely by train members. I made sure to pull my hair out of the way to show off Shasta’s ring. It was expected of me to announce my status to any coyote that didn’t know. That was one of the things in the journal Miwok gave to me. There were dozens more. Some things made me all gooey, while others excited me, and there were even a few that scared me a little, but I knew I’d be able to pull through if I really wanted this to happen.
Shasta clicked her garage door opener and we pulled into the driveway of a two story house with dark red brick veneer. That was about all I saw before we were inside the garage and she was killing the engine.
I didn’t even get the chance to step down before Shasta hauled me up in her arms, bridal style, without even the slightest show of effort. I wrapped my arms around her neck as she opened the door, entered and kicked it closed behind us.
“Consider this house your home, pet. Everything I have is yours.”
“Shasta, were not even…”
“Shush. It is a foregone conclusion. You’re mine. Nobody else can have you and right now, I’m going to take you upstairs, you’re going to strip out of those clothes and change back into a man. Then I’m going to show you exactly how much you mean to me.”
I ducked my face in the crook of her neck. “Does that mean no dinner?”
“We’ll order pizza once I’ve claimed you. You can plan out meals some other time. This is more important.”
I felt overwhelmingly feminine even though I’d be masculine in a few short minutes. I know it’s very anti-feminist of me, but I really enjoy being submissive. It’s not that I think someone is better than me or that Shasta would even treat me like I was a possession. She was mine as much as I was hers. Coyote trains were just role dedicated communities. The men took care of certain aspects and the women took care of others. That way there was no question about whose duty was who’s. Since they were matriarchal, the man’s place and duties were in the home and the woman’s place was to provide the home and secure it from others that threaten it.
That’s simplifying things a bit, but it’s a general overview of the situation.
I nuzzled Shasta’s neck, nibbling at her ear and biting her neck as she ascended the wide staircase. There was a low rumbling in her chest as I did so. We’d been dancing with each other for almost a year. Yes, it had been two years since she had been chasing me, but I was clueless for that first one. Once I figured it out, I recognized our relationship for what it was. I constantly teased her by denying I felt anything. I asked favors and she relented, but I never gave her anything that I wouldn’t have given to the other coyotes.
That just urged her on until she knew for a fact that I was aware of her intentions. Then she became the seductress, constantly giving me attention, buying me things, treating me to coffee, meals, all the traditional dating fare. That led to her outright asking me to be her mate.
That was six months ago.
When we reached her bedroom, Shasta set me on the stripped bed. There was only a single sheet on top that was halfway pulled aside.
“Lay back, pet. I want to treasure this moment.”
I grinned. “I’ve been working all day. I really should shower for you.”
Shasta shook her head. “I’ve performed my studies well. When you remove that bracelet will you not revert to your male self?”
“And you’ll be exactly the same as before you put it on, correct?”
“Then you don’t need to worry about smelling unpleasant.”
My shoes hit the floor followed quickly by my socks. I made to unbutton my jeans, but she smacked my hands playfully.
In a second, my jeans and panties were tossed over her shoulder, and she attacked my cami and bra next.
“This form is very pleasing to me. We will definitely need to explore it another time, but for now, may I have your bracelet, pet?”
Shasta knew it was an important piece of jewelry that was probably why she let me take it off myself. A few seconds afterward I’d reverted to my male self and she simply gazed at me.
“You’re shaven,” she said with amazement. “Everywhere. Do you know how much that makes me want you, pet?”
“I guess I’ll be shaving often then.”
Shasta began unbuttoning her top while raking her eyes up and down my body making me feel like I was about to be the main course of a very tasty dinner.
“Don’t witches have a potion or something to do the job for you?”
I nodded. “But it reeks and I know how sensitive coyote’s noses are. I could always go the mundane route and have electrolysis if it pleases you.”
“It does. I’ll have one of my coyotes arrange it for you.”
Her top hit the floor followed by her sports bra. I was amazed at Shasta’s physique. Muscles rippled under her skin, but it wasn’t overdone. She was firm, but I thought she’d feel soft when I touched her. Her boots were off next followed by her jeans and panties. All the rest of her body followed suit. The most exotic thing about her that I noticed was her complete lack of tan lines. Shasta’s skin was a perfectly even copper offset by her intensely black hair.
I backed up toward the head of the bed as she crawled on the mattress in front of me. Somewhere in my psyche something told me to run, because a predator had me in its sights, but I froze instead, just for a moment. That was all it took for Shasta to pounce and grab my wrists with iron hands pinning me to the bed.
“Too late for running, pet.”
I swallowed and saw her eyes flash from Native American brown to coyote yellow in the span of a second. Leaning down, she dragged her face across my chest and to my neck as she breathed in deeper than I thought possible and then her grip tightened on my wrists.
“Did I ever tell you it was your scent that first attracted me to you?”
My breathing was becoming ragged and I didn’t know if it was from the lightest touch of fear or the amazing way she was teasing me.
“You smell so good. It’s all the candles, herbs, and other things at the magic store, but at its base is a mixture of male and female pheromones that is distinctly Kenneth Redferne. It’s an incredible combination.”
With her left foot she kicked my legs open and straddled my left thigh, slowly rubbing herself up and down the length. To the average person this would mean that she was working herself up for sex, but to the coyote it meant that she was marking her mate so there would be no doubt whatsoever that I was hers. Their sense of smell is said to be 10,000 times that of the average human.
Leaning forward she brushed her breasts across my face, barely giving me enough time to lick them once with my tongue before denying me any further opportunity to sample them.
“So eager to please,” she said with a chuckle. “I knew you would be.”
Her lips captured mine quickly before she bit my lower lip, pulling it back and releasing it.
“I always knew when your eyes were on my body, pet. I could smell you getting hard and imagining the pleasures I would bring you.
Speaking of which, I was most definitely hard and it was trapped between our bodies rolling back and forth across her tight abdomen as she moved. The feeling was almost torture.
Sliding down she took one of my nipples in her mouth and sharply bit down on it until I gasped and arched my back before I groaned in response.
My left wrist was released and before I realized it, I felt something cool encircle the one still restrained until I heard a soft click. Looking up I saw a thick leather cuff secured to the bedpost and knew that I was being restrained. My heart started pumping faster. From reading the journal I knew what to expect, but until you’ve experienced bondage, even this slight, you really don’t know what you’re getting into.
My free wrist didn’t stay that way for much longer as it was cuffed and locked as well.
Then Shasta began our evening.
I woke the next morning to the sound of birds singing outside her window. Sleeping underground, it wasn’t often that I heard that particular sound. Every muscle in my body ached. My joints felt stretched and sore from the odd angles my new lover had put me in as she satisfied herself and me and the same time. There was a distinctly raw feeling between my legs, much more than the minor ache Leo gave me. However, under all the aches and pains was the content feeling of being loved and returning that same love.
“Good morning, pet,” she whispered in my ear. “Feeling alright?”
Shasta was spooning me from behind. I was virtually wrapped up in her, tight against her body, so there was no chance I could move until she let me. I turned my head and felt her arms relax to allow me a small bit of movement. Brushing my cheek against hers I gave her a satisfied growl and bit her earlobe.
She chuckled. “That will sound much more authentic when you are coyote, but I take it in the spirit in which it was given. You, of course, were fabulous.”
I laughed and tried to snuggle against her neck. “You did all the work.”
“Believe me, pet. It was not like work in the least bit. There is a trick to being a proper submissive and apparently it’s already a part of your nature. I couldn’t have asked for anything more.”
Shasta brushed her hand down my back and I winced slightly.
“Hmm, are you in much pain?”
I shook my head, but she moved anyway and made me lay on my stomach as she ran her tongue across all the bite marks that were left behind. I squirmed and writhed under her touch until she was finished and I was once again erect and confined against the mattress. In slow liquid movements she stood and then picked me up. I felt like a lump being carted around, but it made her happy so I didn’t say a word of protest.
In her bathroom was a very large shower with multiple jets that blew water from every direction. Shasta adjusted the temperature and then let me stand for the first time inside her house as she took a poof and thoroughly soaped me down, rinsed me, washed my hair, and rinsed again. Then she let me sit on a shower seat as she cleaned herself, which was a welcome sight to see.
When that was over, I was wrapped up and carried back to a bare makeup table.
“Stay there until I retrieve your things.”
I nodded and yawned happily as I looked at the bed. The linens were a mess, and while I’m sure they needed a serious cleaning, there wasn’t one drop of blood spilled. That’s how careful she was with me. Yes, I was marked in a number of places, but she never took things too far. It was like she was in total sync with me.
Normally I would call that an impossibility, because no matter how much we all like to romanticize our relationships, no two people are great from the start. There are always mistakes, positions not working right, sticking things where they don’t belong, not enough foreplay, or bad timing. There was always something. But with Shasta in control none of that happened. It made me wonder exactly how many lovers she had before me.
Within two minutes she had returned with my pack and a kiss.
She brushed her fingers through my hair. “Anything for you, pet.”
I unzipped the top and started pulling stuff out and then slowed. “Uh, I brought some extra clothes in case…”
“The bedroom next to this one is for your wardrobe. Bring anything you want and you can store it there, or we can start fresh and buy you a new one.”
I chuckled. “That’s not necessary. I have plenty of clothes… unless there’s something that you specifically want me to wear.”
Shasta smiled happily and kissed me again. “Will you be prepared to take your marking tonight?”
I thought back to the journal and what it said about markings between mates then nodded. It was usually a simple tattoo placed somewhere conspicuous that was specifically designed by your partner to represent them. That meant I’d have to come up with something for her by tonight, but I pretty much had an idea already.
“I’ll be doing yours myself,” she said. “Would you like me to get one of the coyotes to do mine?”
“Yeah, I’m not that much of an artist.”
Shasta petted my hair as I sat there and rummaged through the bag, taking out my makeup and clothes for the day.
“Pet,” she said. I looked up at her through the mirror on the back of the table. “Would you consider growing your hair out for me?”
I nodded without thought. “How far do you want it?”
She turned her head this way and that, apparently trying to imagine what I’d look like with long hair. “It will take a couple of years unless you do it with magic. Is that possible?”
She smiled with satisfaction. “Then grow it out to your waist and we can always take it up from there.”
My eyes widened. I thought she was going to suggest shoulder length. I’ve never worn it any longer than that before using my male body.
“Okay, I’ll have if done for you by tonight. It’ll take a few minutes to make the potion but it’s got to mature a quarter hour for each inch of growth.”
When I was sure she understood the procedure, Shasta bent over and kissed my neck. “You’ll spoil me with your willingness to please.”
Shivers ran down my spine at the feeling of her lips on the first bite mark I was given. Leaning back, I met her lips once more before resolving to get ready for work.
“If I’m late, Celia will make me regret it.”
“Then, I’ll help.”
My bracelet was handed over to me. When I did up the clasp, I immediately send a pulse of magic through and felt myself shift.
“Oh my, that is interesting,” she said.
When I looked up to see what Shasta was talking about, I noticed the bite marks hadn’t disappeared. I paused for a moment before rationalizing why they stayed.
“It’s probably because of the second ritual. The magic cancels each other out in the new body, so the marks remain until they heal on their own.”
Shasta beamed. “Excellent. I want to announce to the world that you are finally mine. You’ll need much more revealing clothing then this.”
“Remember I’ve got to work.” When she frowned, I made a compromise. “I’ll wear the cami. That’ll show off three marks without being overwhelming enough for Celia to make a big deal over.”
She moved over to an armoire against the wall and shuffled though some of the contents before returning with a leather cuff with a large paw print embossed over the main portion. Before I said anything else, Shasta took my right hand and secured the cuff around my wrist.
“There. That’s my personal symbol; my own paw print. That and the three marks will be enough.”
Shasta was apparently very possessive when she wanted to be, and I didn’t mind in the least. A large part of me reveled in the feeling of being wanted so much and another part loved to please her with small things like this if it made her feel more comfortable while she wasn’t near enough to protect me. Once she looked me over, Shasta grabbed a fistful of hair at the back of my neck, tilted my head, and pressed a lustful kiss on my lips.
I reeled at the energy in the room before coming to my senses.
“If I don’t get ready, Celia will be over here spitting bullets.”
She caressed my face. “Then I better go get ready myself, because I want nothing more than to resume our activities from last night.”
My wardrobe was very similar to the previous day’s, only with a black cami and bra in lieu of the pink. I tightly braided my hair so it wasn’t a rat’s nest when I got to work on the back of Shasta’s motorcycle. I had to borrow one of her leather jackets because the temperature was dropping overnight into the fifties. I nearly swam in the thing, but I liked it because her scent lingered even above the smell of leather.
We spent the remainder of the ten minutes we had, with Shasta nuzzling my neck and teasing me with what we were going to do that night.
When I finally made it inside, my nipples were little rocks and I was sure my panties were soaked, but I enjoyed it for the way it made me feel desired.
“Looks like the cat ate the canary and every canary in the neighborhood,” Celia said as she saw the smile on my face.
I was all grinds as I slid the jacket off and hung it up on the coat rack by the register. Celia’s eyes widened when she saw my neck and shoulders, then she rolled them.
“Don’t you think you ought to cover those up?”
I lifted my cami to the bottom of my breasts baring a number of others on my back and abdomen. “Shasta wanted me to show them all. This was our compromise.”
She closed in on me and brushed a couple of bites. “Did she break the skin anywhere? You’ll be a coyote by nightfall if she did.”
“No, Celia. She knows what she’s doing. We’re waiting until Friday to turn me. She doesn’t want to interfere with my work, which you should be thankful for. She’s trying to work with you here,” I pleaded. “Can you please give her a break?”
I could tell she wanted to say more, but Celia held herself back and resumed setting up the till.
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