First of all, I would truly and deeply like to thank all of my amazing reviewers, who have pulled me out of a depression resulting from the combination of my weird inner ear problem and the rejection letters I've been getting from book agents. You give me confidence that I am not a terrible author. I'm sorry that his update is so long in coming. I will do my best to write faster from now on.
That said, I must label this chapter with warnings. I usually write WAFF, vanilla flavored, nicey nice sex. The kind I like to fantasize about. This is a bit more harsh. It involves blood (more than just a hymen), a bit of violence (but not a lot), possession (by spirits), a certain amount of exhibitionism. It's not very gory or horrible, but it is a portrayal of a religious ceremony of a completely mythical nature, with the barest hint of actual Mayan ceremonial practices. I have no intention of insulting anybody or anything. You have been warned.
Words in the Quiche language (a Mayan dialect) are indicated by rather than ""
Thanks to TheDivaDivine, my beta!
The eerie greenish glow of the local brand of wizard light made the cave in which he was being prepared seem otherworldly, even to someone as jaded as Draco Malfoy. A low chanting surrounded him, and he wasn't sure whether it was done by a group of men hidden somewhere in the twisted passageways, or some kind of charm meant to add to the ceremony. He could see only two wizened old men, neither of which spoke a word of English, who were preparing him for the ceremony to come.
His Quiche had improved with months spent in Chen'Itza, but it was far from perfect. Ixchel's Aunt, who spoke remarkably good English, had spent a good deal of time explaining the ceremony in all of its gory detail two days ago, before he had entered the cave to fast. It had been remarkably embarrassing, even if he wasn't the blushing virgin. Still, Mayan ceremonies were remarkable different from anything in the supposedly civilized world of wizarding England. Blood magic, sex magic, these were not the Dark things that they were in his world. Here, there was a much more subtle line between good and evil, and the Itza did not seek to distance themselves from a potent magic simply because it involved pain or some sacrifice. There was much here to respect, and Draco could not help but be drawn to it. Perhaps, if he lived, he could return here one day, free to live in a world that was both simpler, and more complex, than Britain.
He had been standing for an hour, on legs weakened from a full night and day of sitting sit, meditating and fasting, to cleanse himself and to allow the god, Kukulkan, to enter him. A bunch of rubbish perhaps, but it would not do to insult these people, so he had done it with remarkably little protest. Perhaps part of him wanted to believe. The two wizards swept their sacred fans, rigid poles tipped in bright feathers and colored stone, unique to each individual and used as European wizards used their wands. They were covering his skin with symbols, altering his appearance to imbue power and symbolism to the ceremony. Finally, as his knees began to shake from exhaustion, they motioned him to turn, and he could see himself, arrayed as a god.
His skin had been painted a brilliant chalky white, but little of the white could been seen, covered as it was with symbols in red, yellow and green. On his arms, snakes, staffs of corn, harsh angles and geometrics, symbols of masculinity and power. His abdomen, a boat, the symbol of Kukulkan returning to the Itza, beginning wisdom and power. His chest, the feathered serpent. So potent to a Slytherin. The revered form of the god.
He wore a loincloth, but no other clothing. Ankles and wrists were covered in gold and jade, his ears had been pierced with ear spools of bright green jade. His neck encased in a collar of gold and red carnelian that would have made Lucius Malfoy quite envious. A mask covered his eyes, but his face, his hair….oh, Salazar's balls….he had a short beard now, and his hair…both now a dark auburn. He had no desire to deflower a woman looking like a blasted Weasley!
He gestured at his hair angrily, wishing he could recall the right words to express his displeasure, but the two men frowned and narrowed there eyes, shaking their heads in tandem. This was a necessary alternation then. Damn.
He followed his two guides into the next room of the cave network, and knelt in front of a brazier, filled with the potent copal incense that the Itza marked ceremony with. The painting of kings and gods around him moved eerily on the walls around him, carrying a stately grace and power that were familiar and yet foreign at the same time, dark faces and dark eyes staring down at him, judging him a foreigner, and questioning his right to be initiated into the holiest of Mayan rights, to make a blood offering to the gods.
He had been unsurprised when Ixchel's aunt, the priestess Sa'pal, had told him of the bloodletting. But it still was a fearful thing for any man, and he could not help but feel the knot of tension in his gut that threatened to swallow him whole, and had tortured him through a fair bit of the "meditation" that he was supposed to have been doing last night.
Sa'pal had explained it simply. "Ixchel, she will give up blood then. The holiest and most sacred blood for any woman. You must do the same. Be glad that it is not required that you draw a rope through the wound, as was done by kings and ahau of the past."
There was a jade pendant on the floor, the size of a closed fist, with a deep depression in its center, a stark white against the veined green of the stone. Beside it, rested the spine of a stingray, long and, Draco hoped, sufficiently sharp. This was not something that he wanted to do at all, much less with a dull blade. A single strip of paper, made from the bark of sacred trees, sat next to the spine.
His watchers stood back along the walls, looking at him through hooded eyes, evaluating if he would continue, or deprive their priestess of her power for another full cycle of thirteen moons. Draco was not a coward, not in this. He might have been in the past, but he had seen too much now. He'd been through too much…he pushed away the sudden flood of memories from the astronomy tower. This was for Ella. He could do this.
He tugged off the stark white loincloth, determined to finish this as quickly as possible, before his nerves and the lack of sustenance made him faint. He picked up the spine in his right hand, gripping it in a clammy hand, and held his penis in the other, pulling tight his skin of his foreskin, far away as possible from the glans. With a deep breath of the smoky, sweet smelling air, he pierced the skin, and disciplined his features not to portray the pain. Blood welled from the wound, and dripped in a dark red cascade into the well of the amulet below him.
He dropped the spine, and stanched the flow of blood with the paper. When the bleeding had stopped, he threw the paper into the fire with a muttered Quiche phrase, and there was a brilliant flash of purple fire, so dark it seemed to glow black. The same light flashed across the opening of the well into which he had bled, sealing the amulet for the moment. He picked up the stone, and tried to stand, but was lifted by the two men, who seemed a touch more approving than they had five minutes before.
Drink. One of the men held up a wide, shallow bowl of a milky liquid swirling with sparks of the same purple-black light that he had seen earlier. Hoping it wasn't poison, he drank, and he felt his strength return with this Itza version of an invigorating draught. He was no longer tired, or hungry, or thirsty, but was filled with a kind of barely suppressed energy that made his heart beat a little faster. The edges of his vision blurred slightly, and he moved forward under the guidance of the two old Itza shamans, until he was at the mouth of the cave, with a dozen men crowding around him, and lifting him into a shallow reed boat.
He felt distant from the proceedings, as the boat lifted into the air. An honor guard surrounded him, guiding the levitating raft up, out of the cave, across the wide expanse of a formal courtyard, which was swathed in the blackness of the jungle night. Before his eyes, one of the immense pyramids dotted throughout the city became crystal clear as his eyes adjusted to the darkness. The men surrounding him began a low chant, which hummed through his body, make every nerve spark with awareness, too bright and sharp to be normal. The boat rose slowly, as the procession made its way up the insanely steep sides of the pyramid, up steps that could not be traversed safely without the aid of magic.
Draco looked up to see the thinnest crescent moon possible caress the very top of the structure. It then it hit him, hard. He was going to Ella. Finally going to be with her. She would belong to him, with him, for at least the next year. He would have something that was his, wholly his, for the first time in a long time. Longing filled him, and raw need followed on his heels. His blood pulsed with it, his ears rang, and he felt as though he had completely lost control. That he could move, or think or breathe until he could see her, be with her. The loss of control frightened him, and angered him immensely. He fought against it, realizing that something else was at work here, not just his own closely guarded emotions, but something in that damned potion. He was not in control of his own body, his own mind.
They reached the top of the steps, and the boat lowered. He stood, naked but for the paint and the jeweled adornments, and walked forward, but it was not him controlling the actions of his body. He raged inside, fighting against whatever it was occupying his body, his mind. The men did not follow, and he walked under the lintel and into a room glowing with soft red light. Another chant took the place of the low hum of the men, this time of women keening low and deep. His eyes adjusted yet again, and his breath caught.
Ella…no, not Ella…Ixchel was arrayed on some sort of padded couch, alone on the raised dais in the center of the room. There were eight chanting women arrayed around the edges of the room, their gaze intent on Ixchel, as though funneling her power. And it showed. She glowed with it. Her skin, covered with painted images as his had been, shone as though lit from within, giving a strange life to the spirals and curves that twined sinuously along her limbs, black and red against a white background. Her wrists shone with a brilliant silver light, which he supposed must be some kind of enchanted bracelet. A painted black circle encompassed her upper torso and the top of her breasts, and the phases of the moon glowed white amongst the black, and rabbits crouched as though about to leap from her shoulders. Her breasts were bare except for the paint, the tips embedded within an intricate spiral design. He felt his arousal build at the sight of her, her long legs splayed open, inviting, awaiting him, with nothing between them but a beaded apron with the same swirling designs in red and black, which covered her hips.
Well, nothing but that apron and the eight other people in the room. And the fact that she was a virgin. And the fact that he had just skewered his privates and should not be thinking about sex right now. And the fact that something or someone else seemed to be possessing his body.
Something seemed to be possessing her as well. The warm brown eyes that he had dreamed of for months had been replaced by silver-white orbs, otherworldly in their brilliance. He felt drawn in by them, unable to resist the combination of whatever force battled him for control of his limbs and the power evident in her eyes. Then she spoke, a deep, resonant sound, full of knowledge and passion and immense age.
The Moon greets the Feathered Serpent. It is time to be One.
He strode forward, crossing the hard stone floor and kneeling before her amongst the cushions she reclined on. Those eyes, so silver and piercing, inhuman and all-knowing; they spoke of promises of unending pleasure, limitless knowledge, and most of all, of unparalleled power.
He ceased fighting the primal urges of his body, and the entity within him seeking to take control, whether the avatar of a god or simply his own darker nature, took control. Disregarding the eight watchers and the low hum they continued to chant, he dove forward, gripping the full hips of the woman before him and ripping off the apron that was held by the thinnest of strings at her waist. They were both gloriously naked, and her sex was glistening and wet, and he was blinded in a fog of lust, forgetting her innocence, the audience; everything but the most basic of calls. He plunged into her, breaking the thin barrier of her hymen with brutal force.
She flinched. It was the tiniest movement, in marked contrast to the raw lust on her face and contained in the glowing silver eyes, but it reminded him for the briefest instant that Ella was somewhere in there, within the goddess that surrounded his pulsing flesh. A tiny part of him was horrified, a part of his soul that had remained buried for years, and had only a few months of use. And another part of him was filled with power, reveling in the dominance. All of that was eclipsed by whatever was controlling his body, and he drove into her again, pounding into her tight wet heat, the slap of flesh beating a counterpoint to the escalating ululation of the witnesses. He grunted, she moaned, and power flared behind her eyes, eyes that stared into his face, pinning him as though capturing his soul.
It was not gentle, or brutal, it was primal. It simply was. The act of sex at its most basic level. The luscious body underneath him clutched at him and she shook ever so slightly, and he reached his peak, spending himself within her, and collapsing forward, barely catching his weight on his arms before crushing her. He swallowed, his mouth dry, and gasped for air. He felt control of his body and mind flood back to him.
He held at bay the injured pride and anger that flooded him, knowing that it would wait until after the blasted ceremony was completed. He looked up into her face, but those glowing eyes were closed. He had had no guidance but the brief instruction from Ella's aunt. He spared a contemptuous look for the chanting women who were still staring at the two still intimately joined.
He pulled away from her, and found the amulet that he did not remember dropping had fallen beside him amongst the cushions. He picked it up, and at his touch, the deep purple glow sealing the reservoir disappeared and he almost dropped the hard won liquid it contained. Still, he managed to steady himself, and masking his emotions with a wrathful sneer, he made quick work of the blood and semen coating both of their thighs. As he mixed it with his own blood already in the container, the infernal humming by the women watches ceased abruptly, and the huge flare of deep purple light filled the room, throwing him backward on to the cold stone floor.
The light was followed by a great CRACK of sound, and he was plunged into momentary darkness. Draco was just regretting for the tenth time that night the absence of his wand, when a soft glow filled the room again, it came from a single amber mage light left glowing overhead, rather than the lurid red light that had filled the room earlier. They were blissfully alone, and all the glamours laid upon Ella had disappeared, leaving her naked brown skin glowing softly with a sheen of sweat.
He looked down at himself, and felt his chin. The beard was gone, the paint removed. He too was just himself.
"Ella?" He asked, not sure how to feel.
Her eyes, deep brown eyes, wise beyond their years, opened. She looked tired, and a bit scared, but not in pain.
What do I say? What can I say? "Are you all right? I'm…..I'm sorry."
"Do not be. It was necessary. And they would not let me feel too much pain." She smiled softly. "The amulet?" She sat up, looking around for it.
He looked down at the stone where it had fallen. The jade oval now held a blood red ruby glowing softly in its center. He picked it up, and handed it to her.
She touched it reverently, and smiled again. "Thank you."
An awkward silence ensued. He sat down next to her, and she curled her legs underneath her, less self-conscious of her nakedness than he was.
Male pride and numerous questions ate at him, as well as a lingering sense of anger at losing control. No one had warned him sufficiently of that. He wondered if the same thing had happened to her.
"You said they." He said suddenly, as though her words had just penetrated his consciousness. "They wouldn't let you feel pain. Who are they? What…what was in me?" He didn't know if he made any sense, or what he was really trying to say.
She took a deep breath, and tried to marshal together her skills in English to explain secrets that few, even among the Itza were privy to. "For you….it was a drink…a potion….it let the spirit of the god into you."
She arched an eyebrow. "It matters not that you believe. But that is what happened. You need hold no guilt for your actions." He relaxed a bit, and released a breath he had not realized he was holding.
She continued. "As for me….I was Ixchel. All of her." She held up her wrists, which had glowed silver during the ceremony. Now, the small tattooed dots that he had noticed many times during the months of their friendship had returned. "Look at these, Draco. Really look."
His gray eyes flickered from her face to look down at her wrists. The circles were not simply dots. They were tiny faces. Dozens of them, all of them female. Like wizarding portraits, they moved, slightly. He was stunned.
"These are the Ixchel before me. Generations of them. My ancestors. They…they help me when I have need."
"They possess you." His voice was colder than he'd meant.
She paused, unsure of the meaning of his words, his tone. "They fill me with their knowledge, and Ixchel's power. They lessen the pain, and prepared me for you….for Kukulkan."
"You haven't known me." Draco said defensively. "I assure you, I can turn out a much better performance in the bed than that."
She smiled, again, that shy mysterious smile that so intrigued him from the first moment he'd seen it. "Then show me."
He smirked a bit, a suave smile that had conquered half the girls of Slytherin, and a fair number of Hufflepuffs and Ravenclaws as well. He leaned toward her, taking her face in his hands, and kissed her, coaxing her tongue into his mouth, and falling back into the cushions with her.
This time, the music that accompanied them was her moans and sighs, and his pleased purrs. He worshipped her body, and brought her to climax with agile fingers and tongue, before filling her with his cock again. Incensed at his earlier loss of control, he was driven to illustrate his skills as a lover to the maximum extent her newly initiated flesh would allow. By the time the light of dawn filtered through the lintel of the door, Ella could be assured that she would not be disappointed with her choice.