Be My Valentine…Snack

Duessa stops at a surprising destination in the next part of ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’.


“Ah, here we are!” Duessa stopped at a lane lined with trees. A tiny cottage covered with vines nestled between two conical shrubberies at the end of the walkway.

Peter stumbled to a stop beside her.

“I didn’t know you lived in Omphalos.” I stared at the tiny flowers budding on vines wrapped around the white walls of Duessa’s dwelling.

There was no hint of anything sinister about the arachnocrat’s Place of Power at first glance. I studied the dusty red door, coated with grime. Delicate spiderwebs trailed an intricate lacework around the cottage’s overhanding porch.

“I don’t.” Duessa released Peter.

She glided up to the doorway, burgundy skirts rustling around. The lady lifted a gloved hand to touch the door, only glance back with a slight smile. “This is a short cut I take to get to my Place of Power via my Omphalos Door.

Duessa controlled a Door, a portal to the Shadow Forest. This meant I’d be passing through it.

Fear and hope churned in my belly, rising to pulse in my temples. I had no desire to return to the Shadow Forest, yet I’d could draw upon considerable power myself there.

It just needed to be strong enough to counter whatever Duessa had lying in wait in her lair.



Be My Valentine…Snack

It’s Me Me Monday! Time to promote, strut, and celebrate your Me-ness!

Only Peter isn’t celebrating anything in the next part of ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’.

He’s just been bitten by Duessa Ashelocke.


Duessa started walking down the street, arm in arm with a dazed, unresisting Peter. I followed her.

The crowd broke up to head in different directions.

I could feel Juno’s inquisitive gaze on my departing back.

I didn’t acknowledge it or do anything to encourage her. The fewer people followed us, the safer those people would be.

The tree walked past several buildings.

I kept my eyes on Peter, slumped and submissive, guided by Duessa. He moved in a dreaming shuffle, kept upright by the four arms curled around him, keeping him firmly in her embrace.

“He’s not all there, is he?” I followed behind Duessa, trying to keep sight of Peter. “You’ve sucked out some of his will when you drank his blood.

“Very good.” Duessa didn’t turn around when she answered. “The Ashelockes can all feed as shadows do.”

As could I. Not that I was about to reveal that. Duessa didn’t know where I’d come from, although she may have guessed.

She still didn’t know what I could do. This was one of the few advantages I’d have in Duessa’ Ashelocke’s Place of Power.



Be My Valentine…Snack

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday, those participating post six sentences of LGBTQ+ fiction on their blogs and share them.

Those sentences can be your own. They can be someone else’s. They just need to be LGBTQ+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQ+ fiction, go to…

My own picks up where we left off on Wednesday (#QueerBlogWed). Peter had just gotten bitten by Duessa, falling under her thrall…

This is three sentences longer than six, but they’re very short sentences, forgive me. (bows apologetically). One is *extremely* short.  (wry grin)


Someone gasped and giggled. I glanced out of the corner of my eye to see Juno, pressing both of her plump hands against her flushed face, covering her mouth.

“There, you see, Christopher?” Duessa raised her head to regard me, all the while cradling Peter against her breast.“If you want him back, you’ll have to enter my home and play my games.”

In other words, I’d have to go to her Place of Power.

A very bad idea. One I shouldn’t consider. Ever.

I nodded, trying to look less terrified than I felt.

Be My Valentine…Snack

It’s #QueerBlogWed, a time to bring a touch of the rainbow to our blogs.

Alas for poor Peter, who never could make Christopher his. Now someone else is about to make Peter hers with a deadly kiss in the next part of ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’.


I caught the glint of a fang, glittering in her red mouth.

“Stop!” I cried, leaping at him, trying to pull him away, but it was too late.

Duessa sank her fangs into Peter’s neck.

He stiffened, his eyes turning glassy.

I stumbled backwards with him, as he swayed on his feet.

Duessa let me pull him away. Her lips were redder than before.

Didn’t anyone else notice the blood on them?

“Peter, you don’t want to fight with me, do you?” she asked. She raised her arms, opened them.

Peter raised his head. “No,” he said, staring at her in a dazed fashion. “I am yours.” He staggered into her waiting arms.


Be My Valentine…Snack

It’s Me Me Monday! A day to promote, strut, and celebrate your Me-ness!

Duessa is certainly celebrating her Her-ness in the next part of ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’, continuing where she left off during Saturday Rainbow Snippets…


“Perhaps it won’t. If it isn’t, I’ll do as both my Valentine and I desire to do.”

“I’m no longer sure what I desire.” Peter shook his head, keeping his distance. “Perhaps this is a mistake.”

“It’s too late for you to stop me, Valentine,” Duessa purred.

She glided towards him, all red lips and rustling skirts.

Peter opened his arms to her inviting advance. She moved into them, wrapping two of hers around him. Duessa was a little taller than Peter, but she rocked forward slightly, dipping him.

He shivered and stilled himself, not retreating into the tilt. This allowed Duessa to brush her lips against his neck.

An appreciative murmur ran through the crowd of people watching. Duessa wouldn’t hurt Peter in front of this many witnesses. She wouldn’t be able to get away with it.

Would she?

Be My Valentine…Snack

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets, a.k.a. #RainbowSnippets!

Every Saturday, writers post six sentences of LGBTQ+ fiction on their blogs and share them. It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQ+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQ+ fiction, go to…

In mine, Duessa considers the offer Christopher made during my Valentine Day’s post (#QueerBlogWed)…


“Ah ha!” All eight of Duessa’s eyes gleamed in triumph. “Are you offering to play one of my games, sweetmeat?”

“Certainly.” I swallowed, trying to sound less terrified than I was. “Surely that’s worth more to you than a single Valentine.”

“Perhaps it will be,” Duessa said, considering my words.


To be continued on Me Me Monday!

Be My Valentine…Snack

Happy Valentine’s Day!

How appropriate it should fall upon #QueerBlogWed. Just in time for the next segment of ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’.

Although Duessa’s idea of romance is something akin to playing with your food. (wry grin)

Christopher is hoping to head this particular romance off, while he picks up where he left off on Monday (Me Me Monday) in trying to stop Duessa from romancing her meal, err, Peter. :)=


“Yes, but you don’t, milady.” I paused. It wasn’t much of a chance, but it was still something. “There are other things you value far more than free will, or even Valentines, if Damian was correct in his judgment of you.”

“Oh, really?” This caught Duessa’s attention. She turned her head away from Peter to face me. “What did my dear little nephew tell you?”

I could feel all eight of her eyes, even the ones hidden under delicate creases of flesh assessing me.

“Oh, please, not another hand me down observation from the Perfect Prick!” Peter broke away from Duessa, moving out of reach of her arm. “I hear enough about him from Christopher, but you, too?”

He balled his hands into fists, planted them on his hips, and glared at both of us.

“Well, Damian is my nephew, or did you miss that small fact?” Duessa dropped her rose, letting it fall to the ground between Peter and myself. “Go on, Christopher. What does Damian think I value more than any Valentine?”

“Games. Rituals.” I swallowed a fearful lump in my throat, before continuing. “Watching your potential prey meet your challenges.”

This hadn’t been exactly how Damian had described it, but I was trying to be polite.

Be My Valentine…Snack

It’s Me Me Monday! A time to promote, strut, and celebrate one’s Me-ness!

Christopher isn’t feeling much like celebrating after Peter chose to go off with Duessa Ashelocke in ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’.

He’s chased after them and is trying to plead with Duessa to let Peter go.

Peter isn’t happy about this at all.


Peter seemed completely oblivious to the menace. He was too busy glaring at me.

“What’s it to you, if I go with her?” he demanded. He took a step forward. Peter was only a little taller than me, but his anger made him swell, grow bigger. It was enough to make anyone shrink back. “What right do you have to say anything about it?”

“I don’t-” I began to explain, but he wouldn’t let me finish.

“That’s right, you don’t!” He raised his voice, unconcerned by the attention we were drawing.

Juno came a little closer, watery grey eyes darting from Peter to me. She raised her pudgy hands to her twitching lips.

Peter didn’t even notice. He waved his arms, shaking free of Duessa’s grasp.

Too surprised to stop him, Duessa blinked at her distracted prey.
His temper lost, Peter ignored his date. “From the moment I first laid eyes upon you, you’ve wanted nothing to do with me! Why the change of heart?”

“Because you don’t understand what being this lady’s Valentine means!” I cried.

More heads to turned to stare at me. A crowd was gathering around us, watching the show.

This wasn’t good. I didn’t want to say too much in front of so many people. “Peter, please don’t do this.”

“I see,” Peter shook his head, slowly. He looked me up and down, a slow smile spreading across his face in a twisted play of angry lips. “Don’t like it when other people play hard to get, do you?”

“What?” I dropped my jaw. “No, that’s not it! You know very well I don’t feel that way about you-”

“Well, someone else does!” A shudder ran through Peter’s body. He swallowed, doing his best to gather his dignity before turning back to Duessa.

Peter took one of her hands and raised it to his lips.

Duessa allowed her hand to be taken, shooting a sidelong glance of triumph.

“It’s a bit too crowed here.” Peter bowed to the lady, keeping hold of her hand. “I suggest we go somewhere more private.”

“There, you see? My new Valentine wants to go with me.” Duessa smiled with coy delight, watching me out of the corner of her eye. “You do respect his free will, don’t you, my delectable?”

With that question, I realized I had a chance to persuade her to let Peter go. Or at least live.


To be continued on Wednesday, Valentine’s Day! Along with #QueerBlogWed…


Be My Valentine…Snack

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday, those involved share six sentences of LGBTQ+ fiction on their blogs.

It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQ+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQ+ fiction, go to…

Mine is a little longer than six sentences, but I wanted to finish the paragraph and it’s a short seventh sentence. (bows apologetically)

Christopher picks up where he left off on #QueerBlogWed in ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’…


“Please don’t take Peter away.” I made my voice as soft and desperate as possible. The desperation would appeal to the predator in Duessa. “He doesn’t understand what he’s said yes to.”

“Doesn’t he?” Duessa filled the question with suggestive innuendo, mingled with more than a little menace. We were outside the Navel. She didn’t have to behave herself.

Be My Valentine…Snack

It’s now #QueerBlogWed, time to share and bring a taste of the rainbow to our blogs.

My own offering is the next part of ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’, the third prelude to ‘Stealing Myself From Shadows’.

‘Stealing Myself From Shadows’ is my novel under revision, the first in a series inspired by Tarot card imagery. This series is part of a collection of ambient fantasy stories known as ‘Tales of the Navel/The Shadow Forest’.

‘Be My Valentine…Snack’ picks right where it left off with Christopher trying to save Christopher’s from Duessa’s hungry clutches…


“Christopher, wait!” Gabrielle cried, but it was too late.

I pulled open the door, making the nearby chimes ring. This signalled my exit from the Navel and Gabrielle’s Place of Power.

I stepped out onto the street, feeling a rush of freedom at standing on a road. The particular path belonged to everyone in Omphalos, including me.

Alas, there was no time to savor the feeling.

I stared at the people on the street, searching for Peter and Duessa.

The tall, distinctive form of Damian’s aunt stood out with her black, high necked blouse, full skirts, and extra limbs stretching out from her torso.

One of them was wrapped around Peter’s bright red vest, keeping him at her side.

“Wait!” I cried.

Other people paused in their walk, turned around to look at me. Most of them kept on walking after a glance.

A plump, familiar looking woman in a floral blouse and skirt stopped, opening her mouth to greet me.

“I’m sorry, Juno!” I waved at one of the Navel’s regulars and did my best to smile. “I’ve got to catch up with someone!”
I dashed down the street after Duessa and Peter. “Wait!”

“Yes?” Duessa turned around, slowing down, until Peter forced her to stop. He eyed me in a decidedly unfriendly fashion, letting his displeasure show.

After all, I was ruining his date.

I certainly hoped I was.