The official website of Brandon Black.

Sexuality

Hags can be lesbian too

Despite everyone with a webcam recording their group playing D&D, there aren’t too many groups actually worth watching. I had the great pleasure of watching such a group play live last night at +1 Gaming.
At one point, our heroes were planning on assaulting a windmill thought to be occupied by a hag covey. They listed their options:
1. “Go in guns blazing,” as they put it.
2. Use stealth and reconnoiter the place before doing anything.
3. Attempt to negotiate with the hags to see if they had any of the artifacts the players were looking for and if they would part with them willingly in trade.
I pointed out they had a fourth option: Take the male character with the highest charisma, strip him naked, cover him in honey and throw him to the hags and loot the place while they were distracted.
A female player immediately objected saying, “That’s so heterocentric!”
I lost it and died laughing — her objection was not to my plan to sacrifice one of the party — her objection was that no women were being considered for the plate!
Honestly, though, it would be hilarious for them to toss in some poor dude and for the hags to toss him right back out again and point to one of the girls in the party and say, “You can keep him! We want her!”
I guess I’ll have to try to be less heteronormative in my thinking.
* * *
New Orleans-based fantasy and science fiction author Brandon Black is the editor of the By Gaslight steampunk anthology series. He has a Bachelor’s in Military and Political Journalism and a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. His short fiction has appeared in Dark Oak Press’ Dreams of Steam III and Seventh Star Press’ A Chimerical World: Tales of the Seelie Court. Brandon has just published a short anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fiction short stories entitled Mechanical Tales and is working on completing his first novel. His most recent story “The Night Mississippi Declared War on the Moon,” has been published in Capes and Clockwork 2.
All text copyright Brandon Black 2016.
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Sexualization and the charge thereof

I had the pleasure of reading through an early draft of a friend’s story that he’s preparing as a submission to an anthology I’m editing. He introduced a trope that is usually associated with fan service but did so in a way that “took the high road” and did not sexualize a very often sexualized trope. And I’m cool with that.

I think it’s the word “sexualize” that I’m not cool with.

I had been posting some fantasy pictures to my D&D party’s online facebook group until two of the members objected. To make a long story short, I think (they weren’t very clear about their objections and I was too annoyed to ask for specifics) they objected to the female characters in the depictions being sexually attractive. The term “sexualized women” was mentioned.

I don’t get this term. It implies that something has been done to the women, or the pictures, or both, that wasn’t inherent to either the women or the pictures beforehand. The pictures I shared were of two models, both women who had arranged for someone to take pictures of them in cosplay, all on their own. These were not women who had been hired to wear skimpy costumes for the sake of pleasing men. These were women who chose to portray themselves in fantasy costumes for their own pleasure and that of those they shared their pictures with. And I, for one, don’t see that as a crime, and certainly not a sin.

I don’t see a sin with males enjoying pictures of attractive females or heroes getting it on with sexy princesses and that sort of thing in stories. Rather than remove descriptions and situations of women in sexual roles in fiction, I’d like to just adjust the balance and make sure that there’s more beefcake to balance the cheesecake. I’d like to make sure there’s as many heroines getting it on with sexy princes they’ve saved as heroes with alien princesses. The old Frank Frazetta paintings had as much half-naked Conan-type barbarian men as half-naked fantasy women, you know? That’s what I think would be fair. Fantasy is called fantasy for a reason.

Usually when I say that, someone lifts their nose and gets all snooty and says something to the effect of “fantasy doesn’t need naked women to be successful.” I agree. But I like naked women and I don’t have a problem saying so. What’s wrong with finding beauty in the human form? What’s wrong with enjoying sex? Fantasy is entertainment and I’d rather have more entertainment than less.

So — anyway — while I won’t ask the author of the story in question to change his work (I’m really biting my tongue not to mention specifics but I don’t want to give away spoilers), it’s his choice and I respect that. Besides, he is a really good writer and there are other aspects to fantasy writing than naked sweaty people.

I’ll just be sure to add more naked sweaty people to my own work, so prudes of the world be warned.

* * *

New Orleans-based fantasy and science fiction author Brandon Black is the editor of the By Gaslight steampunk anthology series. He has a Bachelor’s in Military and Political Journalism and a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing. His short fiction has appeared in Dark Oak Press’ Dreams of Steam III and Seventh Star Press’ A Chimerical World: Tales of the Seelie Court. Brandon has just published a short anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fiction short stories entitled Mechanical Tales and is working on completing his first novel. His most recent story “The Night Mississippi Declared War on the Moon,” has been published in Capes and Clockwork 2.

The Mind Siren

“The Mind Siren” was my entry to the Black Library’s 40K Deathwatch submissions call.

* * *

The xenos thing that floated before him resembled a mermaid of ancient lore. From the waist up, it was almost human: naked blue-green flesh, a beautiful, feminine face, adorned with locks of yellow-green hair, two arms, and a trunk, surmounted with full, jutting breasts. Beneath, it was a long, winding central tail awash in a shifting sea of tendrils ending in crescent hook-shaped appendages.

The siren hovered by the power of its will alone, silent, reaching out to Marcus with her mind.

Strange vistas, images of creatures and places Marcus had not and could not know, flowed unbidden through his mind, one with sensations and cravings he could not describe, only long for.

The mind-siren opened her mouth to reveal a triad of writhing, sucker-covered tongues reaching out to Marcus like psychic antennae, weaving such a tapestry of bewilderment and alien lust about Marcus’ will that he did the unthinkable, he defied his duty.

Marcus opened the seals on his armour, and reaching out to her, pressed his skin to hers and likewise to those parts of her covered by fins and by scales. He made strange and illicit congress with her, knowing her flesh and allowing his flesh to be known in turn to reach bizarre pinnacles of ecstasy no man was ever meant to know.

Afterwards, lying in her coils sated, looking up at the naked stars, Marcus felt no shame for the deaths of his squadmates only peace and fulfilment. Above, sparks of crimson and orange fell from the sky like dandelion seeds of flame.

“So beautiful…” Marcus said. “What is it?”

“The remains of your strike cruiser, my love,” the creature said. “Be not troubled, such things are not a part of your world any longer. Forget them.”

With the warm embrace of her tail wound around his legs and his face pressed against her breasts, Marcus was tempted to forget his duty forever. But he found he could not.

Glimpses of a life dim yet unforgotten flashed through his mind, images of courage and of comradeship, of standing shoulder to shoulder with his brother marines against the xenos foe. He remembered grinding his chainsword through foul Ork flesh and the feel of Eldar vertebrae snapped in his gauntlets. Scenes of bloodshed and carnage on a hundred worlds played out in his fevered mind; his heart swelled with the righteous fury of expunging alien filth and preserving the purity of Man.

A part of him loved the xeno mind creature for the bliss it had brought him, but, for loving it, the greater part of him began to hate himself all the more. In the end, Marcus knew what he had to do.

Reaching up to caress the mind-siren’s face one last time, he spoke a single word. “Invictus.”

The melta bomb satchel charge on the back of his armour exploded, filling the rocky plateau with searing light.

In death, Marcus had fulfilled his duty and reclaimed his honour.

* * *

Fantasy, science fiction and steampunk author Brandon Black is the editor of New Orleans By Gaslight, a first of its kind anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fantasy poetry and fiction set in Victorian-era New Orleans. Brandon is also the web content manager for the Week in Geek, New Orleans’ favourite fantasy and science fiction themed radio talk show, every Thursday at 6 pm CST on FOX Sports 1280 AM. Click here to check out Brandon’s ever-expanding list of published works.
Warhammer 40K copyright and trademark of Games Workshop.
Text copyright 2014 Brandon Black


DANGER: EROTICA!

This post contains a scene of explicit sex. You have been warned.

This is a scene from the cutting room floor if you will from my story “Songs of the Divine Pulsation,” a steampunk erotica story I published in New Orleans By Gaslight. This scene wound up being cut from that story after David Ducorbier, local celebrity and man about town, physically lifted up the pages with this scene on it from my story and dropped them to the floor as being non-essential to the plot. I agreed with him then and when I returned to “Songs,” to add back in some of the material I had cut from it, this scene remained on the cutting room floor. That said, I still think it has some lovely writing.

Dave said I just want to get it on with Marie Laveau. He may be right about that.

The scene involves one of the main characters of “Songs of the Divine Pulsation,” a young black man named Evan who has a great deal of mystic potential and has elected to study under the New Orleans sorceress Sabine rather than with the voudouns of the city.

Evan and Marie

by Brandon Black

Evan gathered tools and supplies from his basement lair to take back to Sabine’s workshop. He placed the metal implements in a large bag for the trip. A knocking sounded on the door and Evan went to answer. The open door revealed none other than Marie Laveau.

Evan stood, silent, in surprise for a moment.

“Hello again,” Marie said.

“Hello,” Evan said with a nod, clearly wondering what this was about.

“I wanted to talk with you again about studying at our temple,” Marie said.

“Why are you so interested in me?” Evan asked. “Or is it that you just can’t stand to see me trained by Sabine because I’m black and she isn’t?”

“It is about Sabine. But it’s not entirely about race. It’s more about the fact that she does nothing with her power. I serve the lwa, I serve the community. People like you and I are rare. Everyone has the basic potential to serve the spirits but only a handful of people are strong enough to be adept at it. I just hate the thought of someone like you, someone who could be a houngan, a strong one, and a real asset to this community, going down her road and never doing any good for anyone.”

“I see,” Evan said.

“I just want you to see what we have to offer. Come to the peristyle and see what we do. It may interest you.”

“I’d like that. When?”

“Why not right now? We’re having a ritual tonight. Come to the salon. My peristyle, my temple, is out back. Come see how your ancestors served the spirits.”

“Let’s go,” Evan said with a nod.

Marie led Evan through the streets of New Orleans to one of the older neighbourhoods and a lovely, if modest, house with a building in back. The pair of them went up the stairs and into the house. Each and every room of the house held a small shrine, some just small tables with a cloth and statuettes and offerings but others the size of large dressers and covered in an array of exotic objects, incense holders, candles and candle holders, statuettes and figurines, carvings of snakes, skulls and sundry other mystic symbols all festooned with swirling pictographs and painting. Cigars, cigarettes, candies, flowers, coins, dollar bills and glasses and bottles of rum were left in offering on the various altars all over Marie’s home. Adjacent to the master bedroom, was the house’s temple room, painted entirely in black, with a main central altar and two sub-altars in the corners, more elaborate than anything he had seen in the house before.

“This was our main temple before we built the peristyle in back. We still hold certain special rituals here.” Marie led him back into the master bedroom and they sat down. “So, what do you think?”

“I am impressed. And curious. I want to learn more about what it is you do.” Evan said.

Marie smiled, triumphant.

“But,” Evan continued. “I’m happy learning from Sabine and Vespers. I’ve learned a lot and I know there’s more, much more, to learn. I’m not ready to give it up.”

“What has she taught you?” Marie asked.

“How to marshal and gather the forces of my body and spirit, how to commune with the Divine Presence,” Evan said. “She’s shown me things I never thought were even possible. I won’t turn my back on her or her teachings.”

“So, show me.”

“What?” He asked.

“Show me what you’ve learned,” she said.

“Are you sure?” Evan asked.

“Yes. Show me what you’ve learned,” Marie said.

“All right,” Evan smiled and began to unbutton his shirt.

“What are you, ” began Marie but Evan simply lifted his index finger gesturing for her to wait a moment and finished opening his shirt. He lifted a hand towards her and waited. She offered him her hand in return and he placed it flat over his heart, enfolded his hands over hers and closed his eyes.

In his mind’s eye, he gathered himself and his flows in his heart chakra, felt the probing, questing essence of Marie’s life force from her hand, felt it interweaving with his own flow. His eyes were closed but he knew when she felt the connection too when he felt the gentle shudder of surprise trickle down her fingertips.

Evan opened his eyes and smiled and drew Marie close; she spoke no word of restraint, made no move of resistance. She pulled the shirt from him and cast it to the floor. Evan brushed his lips gently against hers, his mouth open, exhaling gently across her lips before drawing her into a warm kiss. As their lips met and Marie’s hands began to rove across the warm flesh of his naked, muscled chest, she reached down to unbuckle his belt. Evan kicked off his shoes and let his pants and underwear fall to the floor. He began to disrobe her, helping her out of her dress. Evan knelt before her and removed the dress and allowed her to slip out of her shoes, one at a time, placing them together besides the dress. He then stood as she turned around and he began to unlace her corset, his fingers working quickly and nimbly as it too then fell to the floor. Marie lifted her hair with both hands as he undid the drawstring on her chemise and lifted it over her head. The garment removed, she shook her head, letting her long, luxurious hair fall gracefully about her neck and shoulders. Finally, he turned her around and reaching for the drawstring on her waist, undid and slid down her bloomers, his fingers sliding gracefully down the curving flesh of her backside, and pulled her bloomers to the floor as she stepped out of them.

The resplendent form of her nude body before him, her pert, shapely breasts and erect nipples, her generous and supple curves revealed before him clad only in her soft, immaculate mocha skin, Evan felt his manhood stirring and taking her hand in his, he led her to the bed and wordlessly bid her to lay down, which she did.

He placed his palm flat over her sex not in contact with her skin but an inch or so away from her.

“Close your eyes. Move your pelvis forward slightly in time with your breath. Breathe in, breathe out, draw full and complete breaths from your diaphragm, ” he drew a fingertip across the curve of her stomach. “Let your belly and your pelvis rise and fall as you breathe, that’s it, now imagine as you do so, that your drawing your breath through your flower, inhaling and exhaling prana, or life force. In, out, in, out.”

Evan straddled the edge of the bed and leaned down and kissed her gently across the lips, keeping a hand on her rising and falling belly.

“In, out.”

He kissed her on her throat and opened his mouth slightly to exhale across her skin as he drew his lips gracefully down the curve of her slender neck. Marie trembled.

“In, out.”

Evan kissed and suckled at Marie’s breasts, cupping her breast delicately with his right hand and drawing his thumb across her erect nipple. He drew two deep breaths in time with hers, exhaling across the nipple of one breast while fondling the other with his right hand.

“In and out. In and out.”

He began to plant gentle kisses down the warm curve of her belly and then drew his thumb across the soft sable fur of her womanhood once, twice.

“In, and out.” Evan exhaled across her pearl in time with her inhalation before placing his mouth to her flower. He licked, delicately, up and down the curve of her petals before kissing her on her feminine bud. He flicked his tongue in sensuous curving patterns across her bud while pushing two fingers into her warm, wet and inviting womanhood.

Evan moved his tongue in swirling patterns across her delicate, delectable flesh, drawing across the petals of her feminine flower, kissing her on the inner thigh, before returning to tease and entice her pearl. Marie rolled her hips gently from side to side in a rocking motion and moaned with pleasure.

He turned her over and worked two fingers of his left hand slowly into her sex, which was wet and pliant. Marie moaned louder as he pushed deeper into her and deeper. With his right hand, he drew his fingertips up along her backbone from the base of her spine towards her head, lifting his fingers from her to start again at the base of the spine tracing upwards.

“The kundalini, the primary motive force of the body, resides in the base of the spine. All these techniques are eventually aimed at liberating that force, freeing it to flow unchecked upwards through the chakras of the body towards the top of the head, the crown. The goal is expansion of consciousness through the union of the body’s vital flows. One with body and mind, one with the universe.”

The echoing sound of mighty drums rolled outwards from the peristyle as the evening’s ritual began. As the servants of the lwa, clad in white, danced their way around the circle in celebration of spirits ancient, African and powerful, Marie and Evan made love in time with the pulsating, pounding beat roiling from the temple.

Evan removed his fingers from her flower and anointed his shaft with her juices. Evan lifted her buttocks until she was up on her knees and he moved in behind her. Rubbing himself from the tip of his shaft to its base, he placed his other hand on her beautiful, curvy behind. Then, wordlessly, he spread her buttocks apart with his hands and gripping her tightly, pulled her into him, thrusting forward into her. Marie let out a sudden cry of surprise and then whimpered, shuddering, as he thrust deeper inside.

Evan pulled her hips into his in time with the drumming, the deep chocolate tones of his own skin against the lighter mocha of her soft, curvaceous derrière. He thrust into her over and over plumbing the deep recesses of her full, supple buttocks, again and again and again.

When Marie came, it was with the force of a thunderbolt and every muscle in Evan’s body went rigid as he climaxed and he felt the two of them speared through, transfixed, by the black current of the void flowing through them both.

That indescribably long moment passed, both their bodies went limp and the two of them collapsed together in a heap of spent, sweating flesh.

Evan rolled off of Marie and still panting for breath, looked her deep in the eyes and smiled.

Marie smiled back at him. “Well, that was something.”

Hearing the ongoing ritual in the peristyle behind Marie’s salon, the two dressed quickly, Marie handing Evan a shirt and trousers both made of white cotton as was the custom for worshippers to wear within the confines of the peristyle. Clad for ritual, the two joined the other celebrants, taking their place in the circle and dancing to celebrate the ancestral spirits of their common homeland.

Sweat pouring down their faces, drummers strummed their hands across their doumbeks attaining trance weaving a staccato lattice of sound as men and women partook of the long-standing communion of the Cosmic Dance, each one unique dancing as their hearts and spirits directed yet at one with the circle of rhythm and life all around them.

* * *

Fantasy, science fiction and steampunk author Brandon Black is the editor of New Orleans By Gaslight, a first of its kind anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fantasy poetry and fiction set in Victorian-era New Orleans. Brandon is also the web content manager for the Week in Geek, New Orleans’ favourite fantasy and science fiction themed radio talk show, every Thursday at 6 pm CST on FOX Sports 1280 AM. Click here to check out Brandon’s ever-expanding list of published works.
All content copyright © Brandon Black


The Snake Woman

In my cabin, the stars at her back, she stands naked before me. My blood runs cold as my mind races.

Where did she come from? The ship hangs in open space. How did she even get aboard?

The power of her gaze grips my spine as a fist. She rips the cold dripping fear flowing down my vertebrae from me as she approaches, slinking closer, ever closer.

My eyes are made to follow her green and brown diamond-tattooed curves as her full, gravity-defying breasts, erect, pointed nipples and wide, flowing hips wash back and forth. Her will draws my eyes down to the neat trimmed triangle of brown fur between her legs. I feel the heat of her yoni reach across the room. I inhale her musk.

Unbidden, empty, with no desire, my tongue follows where my eyes have already travelled, down and across her tattooed mottled skin.

I pull back. I apply the mental disciplines I’ve been given, filling my mind with numbers and mantras but to no avail.

Her grave stolen might, alien magick she did not forge and did not possess the rigour and discipline to develop dominates my mind.

She turns my manhood into an iron shaft with a gaze, a laugh and a single stroke of a long-taloned finger.

As an afterthought, she fills my heart with passion.

Pushing me back onto the bed, she mounts me. Her warm, velvet cunt envelops my cock.

Her hips undulate against my own. I perform as bidden.

She climaxes. She releases her grip on my mind.

I collapse. Spent. Disused.

A piece of meat.

* * *

Fantasy, science fiction and steampunk author Brandon Black is the editor of New Orleans By Gaslight, a first of its kind anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fantasy poetry and fiction set in Victorian-era New Orleans. Brandon is also the web content manager for the Week in Geek, New Orleans’ favourite fantasy and science fiction themed radio talk show, every Saturday at 1 pm CST on WGSO 990 AM. Click here to check out Brandon’s ever-expanding list of published works.


Tales of the Fuck Police

Warning: Language (Duh.)

I wrote this in response to a satirical article: JOHN HAGEE CALLS FOR PROSECUTING WOMEN WHO SAY GOD’S NAME DURING INTERCOURSE.

Fuck Police Mission Log 2115.0616

I polish my mirrorshades as my partner pilots our flying police cruiser. The rookie is green, but she’s all right. My badge gleams, sitting heavy on my black leather combat jacket, a constant reminder of our awesome responsibility.

The call comes in, a disturbance in sector twelve.

The rookie puts the cruiser down on the street outside the residence and we get out.

She draws her laser pistol. I go to the trunk and pull out my laser sight equipped drum-fed tri-barrel rotary shotgun.

I unclip my sonic imager and scan the residence. There’s a woman on a bed riding a man for all he’s worth. The waves on the bottom of the scanner indicate conversation. I key the audio.

“Oh God, yes, yes! God, yes! Do it! Harder! Oh God!”

I’ve heard enough.

I kick open the door, shouting, “FREEZE! FUCK POLICE!”

There’s a thud in the bedroom like the man just suddenly threw the woman off his lap onto the floor. Footfalls. Shouting. A nude woman appears in the doorway with a knife. The rookie fires three times burning charred holes into her flesh. She drops to the ground. The man, also naked, runs up with a gauss pistol in his hand. I key the rotary shotgun. The weapon barks and chops him into ground chuck. I let go the firing key of the rotary shotgun and its barrels spin slowly to a halt.

I tap the comm key on my headset and report to Fuck Police HQ: “Two perps eliminated for sexual blasphemy, resisting arrest and attempted murder of Fuck Police personnel.”

We return to the cruiser and take off having done good work.

* * *

Fantasy, science fiction and steampunk author Brandon Black is the editor of New Orleans By Gaslight, a first of its kind anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fantasy poetry and fiction set in Victorian-era New Orleans. Brandon is also the web content manager for the Week in Geek, New Orleans’ favourite fantasy and science fiction themed radio talk show, every Saturday at 1 pm CST on WGSO 990 AM. Click here to check out Brandon’s ever-expanding list of published works.


Time Lords Don’t Masturbate

I don’t think Time Lords masturbate.

I don’t think they know how.

It seems to me that they’re SO technically proficient that even with a few parts lying around, a few odds and ends, they could whip up something to take the edge off as it were.

And even if they were on a totally primitive planet, as long as there was a species there they fancied, Gallifreyans are so charismatic, telepathic and even hypnotic that they could manage to convince someone (something?) to shag them.

Given that 99.999% of all Gallifreyans live their whole cycle of regenerations on Gallifrey, the most advanced planet in the universe and that almost all of those who do travel do it in ridiculously plush hyperadvanced time capsules, I don’t think Gallifreyans even know how to manually masturbate.

Oh, I’m sure they could work it out. I mean, if they witnessed a primitive species conducting it, I’m sure they could reverse engineer the procedure or even develop manual masturbation from first principles if they had to. I’m just betting they don’t.

“Research Log: Manual Masturbation Test 005. I’ve managed to isolate all the nerve clusters in my genitalia. However, successful masturbation still eludes me. I believe the secret lies in getting my fingers to oscillate at precisely the right frequen– oooohhhhh – ahhhhhhh – AAHHHHHH!! Oooo – OOOOOO! I SAY! I SAY! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!! *long pause* Test successful.”

Wouldn’t it be funny if the galaxy’s FTL-capable civilizations all exist without masturbation?

Why worry if Time Teens are going to get each other pregnant or catch or spread social diseases? Just give them a Metamorphic Artificial Courtesan to while away the hours when they aren’t studying.

“Is your Isochronal Phase Mechanics homework complete young man? No using your pleasure gynoid until it’s finished!”

“But Mom…”

Wouldn’t it be hilarious if half the unknown artefacts in Torchwood’s possession turned out to be alien sex toys?

* * *

Fantasy, science fiction and steampunk author Brandon Black is the editor of New Orleans By Gaslight, a first of its kind anthology of steampunk and gaslamp fantasy poetry and fiction set in Victorian-era New Orleans. Brandon is also the web content manager for the Week in Geek, New Orleans’ favourite fantasy and science fiction themed radio talk show, every Saturday at 1 pm CST on WGSO 990 AM. Click here to check out Brandon’s ever-expanding list of published works.