It was a large, bare room and the elf stood in the middle of it, purple hair back in a ponytail and with only a loincloth to protect his modesty. His unnatural stillness proclaimed the presence of a Hold Person spell, the flame haired woman at the doorway in the dark purple, velvet cloak the caster. She looked at him for a moment with appraising eyes then, with a violent gesture, she ripped off her cloak, revealing black leather bra, pants and thigh boots, and advanced on the elf. His eyes were on hers, aflame with pride and fury but he was helpless in the grip of her spell. Defenceless, like a kitten hissing at its attacker. She smiled, flinging her arms wide.

"What do you think? I know the decorating's not up to much but give me time." She leant closer to him, until their faces were less than a foot apart. "What's wrong? Cat got your tongue?" Then whirled away, giggling at her own joke. Moving behind him she rested her hands on her shoulders then slowly, ever so slowly, ran the tip of her tongue up the edge of his ear. His slight, involuntary gasp was exciting and she laughed again then rested her head on his shoulder.

"I'm jealous you know. I don't think there's a proper human equivalent to elven ears. Or dragon's tails or dwarven beards for that matter. I know! Shall we experiment?" Startled by the growl that issued from him she jumped back casting Hold Person for a second time. Satisfied he was once again immobile she stepped closer to him once more.

"Feisty aren't we? Luckily I have a spell, a homebrew no less, I've been saving for exactly this type of situation. It's called" she moved forward until her lips were just brushing his ear, and whispered, "Pain."

Unable to scream, unable to move there was little outer reaction. Inside there was no elf, just the pain. Unbearable, unimaginable pain. Bones filled with fire and acid and pain. He didn't realise when her hands left his shoulders and she moved back to stand in front of him. He couldn't see, he couldn't hear, he couldn't think, there was only pain. No before, no after, just the now and every second filled with pain.

"Stop"

The pain disappeared instantly but the memory remained. Even then, with sweat beaded on his forehead and his breath coming in pants his eyes still glared defiance. A fighter, but she had known that already. No matter. Some would crumble and some would fight but they would all be hers in the end. All hers and they would welcome the pain she brought because it was hers as well. Sure enough beneath the defiance and pride and fury in his eyes were two new emotions. Wonder, wonder at her power, and lust, lust for it and for her. Fledgling as of yet but they would grow. Yes, he was already hers; he just didn't know it yet.

X X X

Haley found herself being shaken awake.

"Vaarsuvius?" she murmured, still half asleep.

"It's Elan, are you OK?" she opened her eyes to see his worried face peering down at her and behind him the side of the tent. "You were rolling around and moaning in your sleep. Were you having a nightmare?"

She blinked to clear the sleep from her eyes and tried to think. Desert, they were in the desert. They were going to Girard's gate. She wasn't a sorcerer she was a rogue and what was "homebrew" anyway?

"Erm... yes a dream, a nightmare. I'm OK now."

Snuggling back into Elan's arms she wished he hadn't woken her. It was just getting to the good part.