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[Fiction] Recruiting temptation.


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Jan 2nd 2015 Cala Llonga, Ibiza,

He had been baking for hours now. The blazing sun warmed him to the point he couldn’t do much more than lounge and snooze. It was everything that could be said about Ibiza, sun, sand, beaches and parties that would kill a human. Totem got the party and now was into the sun and beach. He stretched out letting his talons scrape toward the sky as he rolled onto his back.

No tan would be produced from this bathing even before his eruption that was true. You don’t get tan when you are tan he once thought to himself and was proud of how it sounded. Saved him from buying gallons of Sun screen anyway.

The beach was packed with people escaping Europe’s dreary winter. He could feel a few faint nodes out along the beach somewhere. Most likely just some Nova hiding who they where so they didn’t get mobbed. That hadn’t been much of a problem for him, the paparazzi took some photos but kept their distance. All humans that didn’t know him always had a hint of fear. Sometimes that hurt but when you want your space it helps. So there he lounged getting stared at by those around him but not really minding one bit.

He drifted into sleep again and when he awoke he sipped at a cooler full of Ice he had brought with him. He could see a woman weaving her way through the crowd. She looked Indian, Real Indian, not Lakota or some other Native American tribe. He could feel her node echo across the beach giving him a heads up he was about to deal with a fellow Nova. Her smell intrigued him as well it was like opium but not. He puzzled at that as she moved up along side of him.


“Oh no I’m not Totem. You want the other Griffin down the beach.”

“You’re amusing.” She said with straight face and thick English. “My name is Meena. I have come to offer you a gift if you wish to accept it.”

Totem’s attention was caught and he leaned toward her, his massive eyes blinking out the sun as he looked her in the eye. “And what is it you wish to give me?”

“I am to give you back your old form if you wish it.” She is to the point and her words drip like honey as she says it. Tempting and enticing just by the hint of what she offers.

“I can’t change back. Sorry.”

"I did not say you change back. I said I could give you your old form back if you wish it.”

Totem’s twisted his body around then sat back on his haunches, towering over the small woman engulfing her in his shadow. “You have the power to give me back my old body?” Excitement was building in his voice at the same time disbelief and reluctance remained firmly entrenched.

“Yes I can. If you come with me we can go to a more private locale to discuss this.”

The Griffin quickly got to his feet and began following the dark haired woman as they left the beach toward the parking lot beyond. “I will hear what you have to offer Meena.”

“Please Totem, call me Sin Eater”

………..To be continued…………

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She had simply told him to follow her car as she got in and the driver quickly sped down the road back toward Ibiza town. It wasn’t any effort for him to do; taking to wing he kept an eye on the car for the better part of twenty minutes until it reached the main drag of the city. At first he thought she was heading to the Amp room but the car turned off two blocks short of the structure. The car came to rest near a small restaurant called Alfredo's. As the driver worked his way around the car Totem dove down quickly, flaring his wings to stop himself in the street and almost knocking over a rather shocked tourist on a Vespa in the process.

He apologized quickly and followed Meena into the restaurant. It looked as if it where closed yet the two front doors opened before she reached them and he followed her inside. The interior was spacious which he figured she must have planned for his size. They where also very much alone except for the two servants waiting in the wings near the kitchen door. That made him appreciate her a bit someone taking his requirements into account made him feel a bit better about the situation. “I took the liberty of ordering ahead I hope you do not mind.” She stated as she sat in a round booth at the back of the dining area. She scooted in and he sat down beside the exposed half of the table. “No that’s fine I like pretty much everything.”

“Okay then shall we get to business? You are here because I made you an offer one that I can uniquely help you with.”

“Right but I don’t really understand how you can. I mean do you have the power to shape change other people or something?”

“Not exactly.” She takes a cup of iced tea that is served to her from the table the servant leaves before she begins. “I have the ability to take your taint from you. This is something that in your case might be difficult for me given the level of it but I think it can be done.”

Taking a drink from the bucket that was brought to him Totem scowls at the potent tea that he drinks. He brushes the taste aside to continue the conversation. “Okay so you are a taint cleanser I get that. Now I have to ask. Why me? Does this cost, if so how much?”

“Normally it would cost a great deal many come to me for my services and I do not do it for charity. I must make a living like everyone else.” She sips her drink again then continues. “The rumor mill has been churning of late. It seems you are courting one of our own. After your little romp the other night in the Amp Room it seems all the rumors about the two of you are true.”

Totem hides his emotion by taking another drink of the stout brew. Realizing this tea wasn’t ordinary he can feel it working its way through his body. His pupils dilate making the entire darkened restaurant look as bright as outside. “Ugh what is this stuff? I’ve never had anything like this and my grand-dad made me drink some nasty stuff.”

His attempt at sidetracking the subject brings a smile to Sin Eaters face. “It is Belladonna, Ginseng tea with a hint of Opium. Do you like it? I have it specially made. It would kill a baseline outright but for the likes of us it has a most pleasant effect. Don’t you think?”

He had to admit he did feel really good. His muscles relaxed, all the stress seemed to flow right out of him. The flavor was something you had to get used to but all in all he could grow to like it.

“So let us get back to the subject at hand. You and Apep.”

“I don’t see how she has anything to do with you making your offer to me. Unless she..” He dreads what he next asks. “Did she ask you to come here and make this offer?”

“Not exactly, there are those among us who are simply curious about what is going on.”

“Why is it anyone else’s business?" He grumbles as he takes another sip of the bitter liquid.

“A lot of people have a vested interest in Apep among us. Some enjoy her, carnal appetite. Others support her for the work she puts into the cause. Either way some young buck appears and people notice she begins acting differently.”

“Still don’t understand. Big deal if she likes me. I like her.”

Meena doesn’t reply. The servant brings forth food. Small portions of a curry dish for her. Two others follow and place a half of a large tuna in front of Totem. The fish is grilled to perfection with fine herb sauce drizzled over it. After the servants set the table and retreat she replies as she picks up her fork. “It is a big deal to us. While her mother is content with just letting her do as she likes some of us want to actively help her out.”

“So making me look human again will help her out? I don’t think that seems likely.”

He helps himself to the Tuna cutting a slice off with his talon and samples it and is shocked by the subtle flavor and realizes this must have cost a huge amount of money to prepare.

“You would be surprised. In the end all I am here to do is make the offer and give you back what you seemed to have craved over the past year, your old self back, if at least for a little while.”

They both eat in silence for a long time. The whole sensation that moves through Totem can only be described as transcendent. The tea washes through him lulling his senses causing color and sound to seem to manifest beyond them. Which in turn they actually do as his node brings what he sees into reality. Sin Eater watches with an amused look as patches of color and shade slip around the restaurant as Totem continues to eat his meal. “So what do you think of my tea?”

“It’s good.” He replies. “Never had anything like it before.” She smiles and finishes her meal. By the time she is done Totem has long since been finished and has been entertaining himself with the floating color and sounds, seeming to have lost track entirely of the conversation.

“So are you interested?” She asks once the meal is done.

Totem looks at her. His huge eyes are dilated to an almost comical level. His expression is a bit goofy and the effect of the tea shows clearly on him. However when she asks his expression darkens his pupils narrow and like a switch all effects of the tea simply evaporate much to her amazement. “No. I am no longer that person and I do not need to go back to him. She wants me as I am not as I was.”

“I am impressed Totem. Most who feel taint grip them do not come to terms with it as quickly or as comfortably as you have.” She smiles but stops as he gets up suddenly and looms over her.

“Now I want to know who put you up to this. I know Apep enough to know that she would be disappointed in me if I would have taken you up on it. Meaning someone thought this up to drive a wedge between us!” He growls and the fine wooden floor suddenly finds gouges being carved in it. “Was it Geryon!? It’s not like he can’t still have her if he wanted. Who was it!?!” Stoking himself into further anger Totem snarls at her. Sin Eater however keeps her composer, having dealt with the issues of rage from many a Nova. Before she gets a chance to reply Totem roars again. “Leviathan?! He would be prick enough to do something like this!”

“No on both accounts Totem.”

“Then who, who!?”

“Apep asked me to come here.” Totem’s rant and rage is suddenly popped like a balloon he falls back onto his haunches and looks confused and a bit hurt. “Why did you lie? Why would she do that?”

“She wanted to see if you where truly ready. Even with the temptation to go back again.”

“Ready for what?”

Sin Eater smiles in a knowing matter. “Perhaps you should go ask her.” She stands and touches the griffin on the chest, he flinches slightly half expecting her to take his taint despite his rejection. “I can see why she likes you. You are primal and noble and once you get out of your awkward youth will be a majestic king. Take care of yourself Totem.” With that the Eater of Sins leaves leaving a very confused young Nova in her wake.

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