Raven Lenore was making hot love with her live-in lover, Maggie Wilson. Suddenly Maggie became Raven's former boy friend, Henry Bagyar, called "The Beast" because of his animal appearance and beastly manner. As was his way of kissing, he licked her lips and kept licking although she told him to stop.
She awoke from this dream to realize that it was her familiar, Mephistopheles the cat that was licking her face, not Bagyar. "What the hell, Meph? What are you doing?"
Mephistopheles, who was a telepath, said to her mind, "I needed to wake you. Besides ever since Morgaine gave me to you, I've had the hots for you. Your lips are nice on soft, but you have morning breath."
Raven glanced over to the other side of the bed to make sure that it was Maggie sleeping there and not Bagyar, that she was not still dreaming. Satisfied that she was awake, she whispered so not to disturb her lover, "How could you have the hots for me? You're a cat."
"I wasn't always a cat. Once I was a man. Morgaine changed me into a cat."
"Really? I didn't know. Why did she do that?"
The cat shrugged. "If I knew, I would tell you. Actually
you've met me as a man. When Morgaine and you were in
college and went to
"That was you? Boy, you were some kind of jerk and not good looking either. I never understood why Morgaine left that bar with you."
"So, that's what you thought of me. Well, I was young and inexperienced and had low self-esteem."
"What happened? Did Morgaine and you make hot love all night?"
Mephistopheles hissed. "I only wish. Of course it was my fantasy to do what you suggested. She took advantage of my naiveté and turned me into what I am now."
"I'm sorry. Nonetheless, never, never kiss me on the lips again or touch my boobs or fanny, now that I know that you were once a man. If you do, I'll take you to the nearest animal shelter."
"Meow," the cat said aloud. "I get it." It hung its head as though in shame.
"Before we got into all this talk about Morgaine changing you into a cat, you said that you needed to wake me. I hope the house isn't on fire or anything."
"Hardly. Would I stand here gabbing with you if it was? Morgaine ordered me to summon you. She wants to speak to you."
Raven slipped out of bed. "Where is she?"
"In the living room."
Raven left the bedroom and quietly closed the door. She walked down the short hallway of their apartment to the living room. Morgaine sauntered toward her from a dark corner. The demon had the form of a beautiful woman with auburn hair who wore a long black robe. When she had been a young living woman, she had been given the gift of sorcery by fairies by promising to use magick only for good, never evil. However, to save the man she loved, Michael, from losing his soul to the demon Asmodeus, she practiced black magic and sacrificed herself. As a result, she became a demon herself and does the bidding of her master and mistress, Asmodeus and Lillith. Because Raven and she were friends when she was a mortal, she is Raven's guardian dark angel.
"Greetings, my friend," Morgaine said.
"Aren't you angry because I caused you to be sent back to the underworld?"
Morgaine shrugged. "How could I ever stay angry at you, my darling? You're probably the only real friend I've ever had except for a woman I met elsewhere named Gretchen."
"In another dimension. It's where I learned to be a sorceress."
"What about Michael Ellul?"
"Once he was my lover, but, as you well know, he's a typical man, going from woman to woman. He loved others more than me, especially Melody ... and perhaps that Russian woman, Lara Borinski. But enough chat about lost loves. I've come to the earthly plane to ask your help."
Raven chuckled. "Me help you? You must be kidding. You're a powerful demon. All I have is my deductive and intuitive powers and a little knowledge of martial arts. Oh, I'm a pretty good shot with an automatic, too."
"You have paranormal abilities that you may not even be aware of. In your world, my powers are severally limited. For example, my time here with you now is short. For that reason, I must get right to the point. In the 'underworld' as you call it, a great struggle is taking place between Asmodeus and his minions and my mistress, Lillith. At the moment Asmodeus has the upper hand. He has dethroned Lillith. Should he win out completely, the human race is in grave danger. He has a scheme to initiate an apocalypse so devastating you mortals might be wiped out."
"You're scaring me. But what can I do against an archdemon?"
"Simply follow my instructions. I am forbidden to tell you much, only give you hints which you must solve the meaning of yourself. First, indulge your sex partner. You will discover the identity of the entity Asmodeus plans to make into the ruler of the world. Next you must help a hateful religious zealot. Lastly, you need to solve a missing person case given you by our former lover. It may require that you brush up on your knowledge of alchemy."
"I understand the first and third part of your instructions, but who is this religious zealot? How will I find him?"
"He will find you. He intends to kill you. Asmodeus has sent your doppleganger and the fallen angel Lucifer to trick him into performing murder. You must cure him of the spell that was cast and his mistaken ideas. The zealot will accompany you on the most dangerous mission of your career."
The sun began to rise over
"Thanks a lot," Raven muttered. "Why must I be the one chosen to walk into horrible situations all of the time? I guess that's what I get for having a guardian fallen angel."
She strolled over to the window and peered out. It was snowing heavily. The pavement below was white. At least six inches was on the ground, and the snow was still coming down rapidly. It was very pretty scene.
She recalled that it was Christmas Eve. "At least we'll have a white Saturnalia this year."
She went into the kitchen and mixed up a batch of pancake mix and started the coffee maker. By the time she had fried several pancakes, Maggie strolled into the room, yawning and rubbing her eyes. She kissed Raven on the lips. "Merry Christmas, Raven."
"And Happy Saturnalia to you, my love."
Maggie grinned mischievously at her. "Blasphemous pagan."
"Foolish Christian. Sit down. How many hotcakes do you want?"
"Just two. Got to watch my figure, y'know."
Raven served her, filled her own plate and poured coffee. "Did you see the snow?"
"Yeah. I guess that scraps our plans to go out tonight to celebrate the holiday."
"That's all right. I've got a couple bottles of red. I'll take a couple of strip steaks out of the freezer, and we'll spend a quiet evening at home, exchange gifts, drink wine and maybe watch a movie. Inception is on movies-on-demand."
"Okay by me. Say Raven, were you on the phone earlier. It sounded like you were talking to someone."
"I had a visit from my guardian fallen angel." She told Maggie about the visit.
Maggie shook her head and made the sign of the cross. "Are you going to do what she requested? Dealing with demons is risky business. I should know. I gambled away my freedom with one. I'd still be Magbertius's slave if you hadn't come along."
"I know. They're not to be trusted. But, everything she asked was pretty simple. I enjoy indulging you. If a missing person case comes up, I'd surely take it anyway. It's what I do. "
"What about this religious fanatic that is going to try to kill you?"
Raven shrugged. "Dealing with him may be unavoidable. Morgaine said that he would find me. But, let's forget about him and enjoy the day."
"Absolutely. We can start by showering together." The mischievous grin returned.
"I'm all for that."
They left the table, went into the bathroom and stripped. As Raven turned on the shower, Maggie placed one hand on her buttock and with the other squeezed her breast. Raven stood up and placed her arms around Maggie's neck. Maggie pressed against her until Raven's back was against the wall. Raven closed her eyes as Maggie licked a nipple while placing her hand on her crotch. Raven shivered with sexual excitement. She whispered, "Let's go into the shower."
Maggie released her hold and stepped into the tub. Raven followed her. Although they were both in their late thirties, they exercised and watched their diets. As a result their figures were still good. Either one could walk down a street and receive admiring glances of men. As they soaped each other down, Raven enjoyed the feel of Maggies heavy breasts and gazed fondly at her lovely features.
They stood under the shower pressed together and touching each other in all the spots for maximum erotic pleasure for several minutes until their sexual excitement built to a frenzied passion. They played in the tub until both had achieved orgasms several times each, rinsed off and toweled each other dry.
As Maggie gazed at her naked body in the mirror, she remarked, "Shit. I'm beginning to look old."
"Are you kidding? You look marvelous."
"Yeah, sure. Look at those laugh lines. I'm getting bags under my eyes." She lifted her breasts with her hands. "I'm beginning to sag."
Raven hugged her. "So that's life. You can't turn back the clock. For our years, we're doing well. For Hecate's sake, I think you're lovely."
"Next year, I'll be forty. Will you still think so in a few years?"
"Well, so will I. Outward appearances aren't everything. It's what's inside a person that counts."
The rest of the day they spent in various activities such as cleaning up the house, playing video games and finally cooking dinner, which they ate in the living while watching the news on TV. Afterwards they exchanged gifts, drank wine and watched the movie. Around they retired to the bedroom and made love again.
"This was one of the best Christmas Eves that I've ever spent," Maggie said. "I love you so much, Raven, even though you're an unrepentant pagan. Happy Saturnalia."
"I love you too. And it has been a wonderful day. Merry Christmas.
They kissed again, said goodnight and went to sleep.
* * *
They slept late on Christmas Day. The snow had stopped, and the plows had begun their work of cleaning the streets. As usual, after breakfast, they read the newspaper. Maggie cried, "Look at this." She showed a half page ad about a youth elixir called Quintessence. According to the ad, the substance restores youth, cures any illness and restores vigor.
Raven laughed. "Don't tell me you believe that there's something on the market that can actually do what this ad claims?"
Maggie's lips curled in a pout. "There might be. It might be a scientific breakthrough."
At first, Raven was tempted to laugh and tell Maggie that it was a con; nothing could do what the ad promised. But then she noticed that it was available from the psychic Madam Katona and recalled what Morgaine had told her. Madam Katona was a psychic who she had visited from time to time. She was enigma who seemed to be on the up-and-up and could really foresee the future. At that point, she recalled Morgaine's instructions about indulging Maggie.
"Hmm. It wouldn't hurt to look into it. We'll go to Madam Katona's tomorrow evening and buy a bottle. But I want to bring it to a laboratory to have a sample analyzed before either one of us takes a sip."
"Great. I'll bet that you'll want some when you see how youthful it makes me."
When Raven pulled