And Then There Were Goblins
Cameron and Whip had been on more than two dozen missions together. They were an odd pair, the large, hulking woman and the tiny slip of a thing, but over the years, they had built up a strong friendship. Both of them were women of few words; in a glance, they were able to communicate more to each other than they could have shared with a stranger in an entire speech.
They’d both noticed Drew’s growing attachment to the New Queen. It made no sense; she was the one female in the world who was supposed to be immune to the goblin’s pheromones, but there it was. It was in the way she looked at her, the careful way she held her. Somehow, the scientist had let herself become attached, and it was starting to be a worry.
Cameron had no problem being merciless; the mission always came first, and if Drew’s goblin expertise wasn’t unmatched and potentially necessary to keep the New Queen alive, Cameron would have taken her out without blinking.
Unfortunately, they needed her.
Neither of them wanted to mention it to Vernita. Cameron had worked with many soldiers over many years, but she’d never seen anyone with such a hatred of goblins as Vernita. She wasn’t the communicative type, so Cameron had no idea what had caused such passion, such fury, but for the most part, it was exactly what was needed in a soldier. Her hate ensured that at the end of the day, the goblins were dead, and that was all that mattered.
Here and now, it was starting to get in the way. They needed the Queen alive, and Vernita’s hatred was, as a problem, starting to match Drew’s obvious affection for her. The whole party was turning into a powder-keg, ready to explode, and without Bea’s tact, Cameron was at a loss for what to do next.
So she’d taken the New Queen, and gestured for Whip to chat to Drew, see what she could find out. Cameron was going to see if she could get anything out of Vernita, but she didn’t hold out much hope. She’d never heard Vernita share anything personal to anyone, and while she was in a state like this, Cameron would be lucky if she got more than a few words out of the tense woman.
Beatrice watched her old comrades. She had finally caught up, and was trying to remain half a tunnel behind, to see if she could observe anything from the outside that would help her Queen.
She felt nothing but sympathy for her old troupe, sympathy that they didn’t know the pure ecstasy of servitude, the genuine bliss that came from worshipping a being of such majesty. She felt sympathy that it would be hours, maybe even days before her Queen deigned to turn them, and she especially felt sympathetic towards little Drew, not able to feel the utter perfection of a goblin’s musk.
Cameron was carrying her future ruler, her hefty frame easily able to carry the slight creature. Beatrice forgot her purpose for a few minutes as she simply stared, amazed that such a small creature could be so important, so vital to her existence. Such a small creature, her entire world.
By the time she was able to notice anything other than the small, beautiful creature perched upon the large woman’s back, Cameron had approached Vernita at the head of the party. Beatrice watched as Cameron leaned forward and said something to the large woman. Beatrice was too far away to hear Vernita’s response, but Cameron stood straight, obviously rebuffed, clearly a little bit hurt.
Looking at the rest of the party, Beatrice’s sympathy for Drew increased. Not only was she unable to smell the lustful scent of the goblin, it looked like she was now obviously walking separately from the group, ostracized, outcast.
If it weren’t for her mother’s meddling causing Drew’s abnormality, Beatrice would be able to use the girl’s obvious loneliness to turn her, her need to belong, even her sexual inexperience.
As she watched, Whip started to drift towards Drew, but before the two girls could start their conversation, Whip abruptly stopped, and stared straight at where Beatrice was hiding.
The goblin ducked, her heart racing. Even as a human, she’d never been able to understand how Whip knew the things she did. She was flexible, practically an acrobat, but more than that, she seemed to have a sixth sense when it came to goblins.
Before Whip could disappear from the group and somehow end up in front of Beatrice, she slipped away, making as little noise as possible. Whip wouldn’t risk straying too far from the party, and Beatrice knew that she’d be able to find them again, as long as they had her Queen. She was acutely aware of the whereabouts of her Queen, as if her location was coded into her DNA, written onto her very soul.
Bea waited half an hour, and caught up with the group again. She didn’t waste time looking at Drew this time, she simply focussed on her target. A partner of many years, many missions, Bea had slept with her so often that she could bring her off in her sleep. Yes, Bea’s first target would be no challenge at all—a worthy offering to her Queen, an opportunity to impress her.
Bea would bring her Queen an army to rule with. She deserved nothing less.