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The Road To Hell – Chapter 1

Updated: Apr 21

A story of the Dresden Files. You should not need to know anything about the book series this is based off of to enjoy it, but it will be even more fun if you are familiar with it. This story will contain spoilers up to book 13.


There are five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. Anyone can tell you that. The thing that they didn’t tell you about going through these stages of grief was the fact that it wasn’t exactly a linear process, and you don’t get to be able to predict the stage you’re going to be in during a given day; it just happens upon you without your consent. For example, she could start a day in the midst of depression, then without warning circle right back to the first stage, then get angry. It could keep happening and like that over and over again, a never ending cycle.

She had always considered herself a strong woman, able to handle whatever life throws at her. Hell, she was a wizard, and had been mentored by one of the greatest wizards Chicago had ever known. Wizards were masters of the world… they didn’t go around being depressed, or battling feelings of depression. They had a firm grasp on the way the world worked, and if they could create an illusion at the snap of their fingers, then they should be able to control their feelings, and how they acted.

Guess she was a shitty wizard.

Molly missed her boss.

It had been most of a year since Harry Dresden, her mentor, had… died… and ever since then she had been the only professional wizard in the city of Chicago. Except she wasn’t officially a wizard… She was an apprentice. And no one paid her like they had Harry – not unless you counted the wallets and watches she lifted from bodies sometimes – so Molly guessed she was more amateur than professional. She didn’t have a PI license like her boss had, or an ad as a wizard in the phone book. But…

But she was all there was. She wasn’t as strong as he was. She wasn’t as good as he was. She wasn’t as brave or smart or as resourceful as he was. But she was all there was.

So she had to be enough.

She spent most of her time living outdoors these days tired, hungry and full of regrets, and she had been since the death of the man who had believed in her enough to put his life on the line for her. Harry had been the only person that had seen her potential when everyone else had thought her a lost cause; a juvenile delinquent that would one day burn herself to the ground. A warlock. She should have been killed. Instead, Harry had taken her under his tutelage, and shaped her into a strong woman that was capable of controlling her powers. Under his guidance, she had slowly peeled away the layers and layers of her doubts and assumptions and revealed what she could do beneath them, and Molly had found herself able to do the kind of magical things that she would have never thought herself capable of before.

She, Margaret Katherine Amanda Carpenter, had discovered a world beyond dressing up as a troublemaking Goth chick, playing truant in school before she had dropped out, and dabbling in drugs with her boyfriend. At the behest of Harry, she had cleaned up her act, completed her education, and learned to control her emotions… and her magic. Sure, she would have preferred it if she and Harry had become something… more… than student and teacher, but no matter how bright the torch she carried burned, Harry had never managed to get it out of his head that he had known her before she had been wearing bras. Even though she had reluctantly pushed her feelings for him aside, and focused on learning everything she could from him, she had still harbored the hopes that they could one day be more.

Well, not anymore. Harry was dead… and it was her fault.

She could feel the darkness that lingered over the city now, crowding around it. The city had lost its shining star, and for a man so large Harry had never seemed aware of the size of the shadow he cast. His existence had kept the city safe… and now it was up to her to protect it as best she could. Even though no one thanked her for it. Even though even the people who should have known better looked at her like she was some kind of a nut.

The thought enraged her. To hell with them! She didn’t owe any of them an explanation! If they thought for one minute that they could all have a good night’s rest if she got her shit together, then they had a big storm coming. This wasn’t going to get better, it wasn’t going to go away. She was aware of what she looked like, but someone had to play the role of a vigilante, a terrifying figure in the shadows to scare away the supernatural predators that came lurking around. It wasn’t like she could go around getting a manicure or a nice haircut. Sacrifices had to be made in order to ensure the safety of the city, and she had dedicated herself to doing that.

How long had it been since she had had a decent night’s sleep? Her days and her nights were filled with trudging through the city of Chicago, searching for the worst of the bad guys, and the too short periods between were filled with lying awake in whatever abandoned lot she found, and being consumed by the nightmares that always left her weak and trembling. Her once bright world was filled with terror, and not only was she grieving the death of her mentor, and trying to protect the city from the claws of what was trying to swallow it, but she also was haunted by the nightmare at Chichén Itzá and the horror show that had been. She had been shot, blacked out… and when she woke up…

When she woke up, the Red Court of Vampires was gone, and the largest power vacuum in history had been opened up worldwide… and Harry was gone.

She wiped away her tears as she reached an abandoned parking lot, placing her hand on the short gate, and easily scaling through. She was a tall woman, though she often hunched over these days, and most of her length was in her legs – climbing over the gate was easy enough.

The parking lot was covered in snow – the plows couldn’t keep up with the heavy Chicago winter, and her combat boots made a crunching sound on the snow covered ground as she walked, her eyes darting from left to right. She never knew what she could find in the darkness these days. Not since the Fomor had arrived.

Molly didn’t know where the Fomor had come from, but they had begun appearing after the Red Court of Vampires had been destroyed overnight by Harry. Their territory vacant, their influence gone, it had opened up a hole… a hole that the shadowy nation that called themselves the Fomor stepped right into. They had begun abducting people by the hundreds… anyone with even a hint of magical ability was in danger, as well as anyone who had political power and influence but not the protection to keep them safe. Those that returned to the city after the Fomor took them weren’t quite… human… anymore. These strange, modified hybrids, called Servitors, were stronger, faster, and far more vicious than your normal Chicago thugs, and they were unthinkingly loyal to their Fomor masters.

Molly had gotten between them and the citizens of Chicago dozens of times now… they knew who she was, and hunted her like a dog. She could never know for sure who or what might be sneaking up behind you these days, and she always had to be one step ahead of danger to survive. The servitors were everywhere these days, and the mortal authorities of Chicago were blissfully ignorant of the real problem… when they weren’t outright corrupt. Defending the city of Chicago meant she needed to be a warrior for the innocent – Harry’s legend had been larger than life, while she couldn’t replace him she could replace the legend that kept people safe. Oftentimes that meant taking the law into her own hands and doing what the cops were supposed to do, and she didn’t feel any remorse for doing that. It was part of protecting the city… and the cops were worthless. She had found one of those pieces of scum raping a prostitute in an alley just the other day, and after she had made him eat his gun she had pulled down his collars and found the water-breathing gills on his neck… another Fomor servitor. She had stuffed a scrap of her rag clothing into his mouth, her trademark… the same mark she left on all of them. The men and women terrorizing the city. She had gone on a rampage, purging the city of the lowest forms of life, much to the chagrin of everyone else.

That was where the blood on her hands had come from.

Molly walked through the abandoned parking lot, her feet crunching on the fresh snow as she tried, and failed, not to think about where she’d come from. A gang of Fomor servitors had been carrying a fifteen-year-old boy down an alley toward Lake Michigan. If they’d gotten him there, he’d have been facing a fate worse than death. She had intervened, but that bastard Listen, their leader, had cut his throat rather than let him be rescued. Molly tried to save him while Listen and his cronies ran. She’d failed to save him… and she’d been right there with him, feeling everything he did, feeling his confusion and pain and terror as he died.

Harry wouldn’t have felt that, for multiple reasons. She was sensitive to emotional energy… unable to tune it out, really. It had let her get into a lot of trouble, earlier in her life. That wasn’t the main reason that Harry wouldn’t have felt that kid’s pain, though. It was because Harry would have saved the day. He would have smashed the Fomor goons around like bowling pins, picked the kid up like some kind of serial-movie action hero, and taken him to safety. He would have done it… and she couldn’t.

Molly missed her boss.

“You really need a bath, child,” the voice said calmly from behind her from where no one had been a moment earlier… close enough that she felt the hot breath on her neck.

Molly didn’t panic… panic got people like her killed. Instead darted forward through the parking lot quick as blinking and vanished behind the nearest car, getting out of sight and flatting her back against the metal. She drew both of her wands from her hip pocket and checked the energy level of her bracelets that she used to conjure up shields… both of them were good to go. Her rings were full too, which meant she was about as ready for a fight as a lightweight like her could get…. so instead, she ordered her thoughts, made a small effort of will, whispered a word, and vanished from sight.

Veils were complex magic, really advanced stuff for an apprentice, but talent across the magical spectrum wasn’t distributed equally… and Molly had a knack for these. Becoming truly and completely invisible was a real pain in the neck – Passing light completely through her was a literal stone-cold bitch, because it would leave her freezing cold and blind as a bat to boot. Becoming unseen, though, was a much easier proposition. Being unseen didn’t require being invisible… people just weren’t that observant. A good veil could reduce what there was to see down to no more than a few flickers in the air, a few vague shadows where they shouldn’t be… but it did more than just that, too. It created a sense of ordinariness in the air around her, an aura of boring unremarkability… like you felt on a job you hated, at 3:30 in the afternoon, without a drop of coffee to be found anywhere. Once you combined that suggestion with a greatly reduced visible profile, remaining unnoticed was at least as easy as breathing.

As Molly vanished into that veil, she also called up an image… another combination of illusion and suggestion. An illusion of her. It looked just like her… a pretty, dirty blonde girl, wearing ragged clothing and blankets like a crazy homeless woman. The sensations that she sent with this one was just… a kind of heavy dose of Molly: the sound of her steps and movement, the scent of her grime, the desperate energy. She tied the image to one of the rings on her fingers and left it there, drawing from the energy she’d stored in a moonstone. Then she picked up a handful of powdered snow from the ground, rose up with her image layered over her actual body like a suit made of light, and whirled to scan the parking lot… already moving.

Her image turned left, while Molly turned right. To anyone watching, the rag woman was prowling across the parking lot, holding her wand and looking for a threat. As that illusion hopefully drew any eyes, Molly slipped her hand into her nylon backpack and drew out a knife… an M9 bayonet that her brother had brought home from Afghanistan. Molly drew the heavy blade out, closed her eyes…

And spun, flicking the snow through the air in a wide arc at about chest level. She heard it… it was a soft sound, almost entirely muffled by another veil, but not completely… not when she was paying attention. Molly oriented on the sound, opened her eyes, and rushed forward at where the snow had hit, driving the knife into the air before her at slightly higher than the level of her own heart.

The steel of the blade suddenly erupted with a coruscation of light as it pierced a veil that hung in the air only inches away from Molly. She stepped rapidly through the veil, pushing the point of the knife before her towards the form that suddenly appeared… a woman, taller than her and dressed in business clothes with long, fiery autumn hair unbound and wind-tossed in the storm. The figure twisted to one side, off-balance, until her shoulders touched against the brick wall of the nearby building.

Molly didn’t relent – she drove the blade towards her throat until, at the very last second, the other woman’s slender hand snapped up and grasped Molly’s wrist – quick as a serpent but stronger and colder. Her face wound up only a few inches from the other woman’s as she put the heel of one hand against the knife and leaned against it slightly — enough to push against the other woman’s strength and resistance, but not enough to throw her off-balance if she made a quick move. Molly’s eyes were narrow as she glared at the woman… She was lean and lovely with wide, oblique green eyes and the utterly perfect bone structure that could be found only in a half dozen of the absolutely top-tier of supermodels…

And in every single one of the Sidhe.

“Hello, Auntie,” Molly said in a level voice. “It isn’t nice to sneak up behind me. Especially lately.”

The sidhe woman held Molly’s weight off of her with one arm, and though it clearly wasn’t easy for her she managed with just one arm. There was a quality of strain to her melodic voice. “Child,” she breathed. “You anticipated my approach. Had I not stopped thee, thou wouldst have driven cold iron into my flesh, causing me agonies untold. Thou wouldst have spilled my life’s blood upon the ground.” Her eyes widened. “Thou wouldst have killed me.”

“I wouldst,” Molly growled.

Her mouth spread into a wide smile, and her teeth were daintily pointed. “I have taught thee well.”

Then she twisted with a lithe and fluid grace, away from the blade and to her feet a good long step away from me. Molly watched her closely, and lowered her knife… but she didn’t put it away. “Time for another lesson, Auntie Lea? Now?”

The Leanansidhe smiled at her, and that smile was one of the most dangerous things Molly had ever seen. The red-haired woman wasn’t just beautiful – the muse was one of the most powerful fae of the Winter Court, and the late Harry Dresden’s honest-to-god fairy godmother. Lea was beautiful beyond the loveliness of mere human form… tall and pale, her hair the color of autumn leaves catching sunset rays. Her ears were very slightly pointed, and she wore a long gown of green silk. One look at her, and any red-blooded male would be on his feet pleading with her to never leave him. Most women would, too… even those that didn’t swing that way. The danger, though, lurked right beneath the surface. There was some sort of lifeless quality about her beauty, an emptiness to it. It was a flame, but one that instead of warming the viewer threatened to rage out of control and destroy.

And Lea was her mentor now.

Harry and his Godmother had had a… antagonistic… relationship for years and years, and while it had been growing more friendly in the time that Molly had been his apprentice, Molly had never for a second deluded herself into thinking that they were friends. The truth was, however, that Harry hadn’t died in his sleep, or gone peacefully. He hadn’t even died on a normal case. When the vampires came for his daughter, when he needed help most and he had been abandoned by everyone else he hoped he could count on, her mentor had done the unthinkable… he had sworn himself to the unseelie sidhe for their help. Promised to serve them. Joined them. It made him a member of the court, subject to their sense of debt and obligation… something that they took very seriously. With her mentor gone, he couldn’t fulfill his obligations to his student… which would be a stain on the honor of the Winter Court. So one of Harry’s mentors, the Leanansidhe, was here to do it in his stead.

Molly wondered if the dangerous sidhe woman knew that, desperate to escape his obligations and avoid becoming a monster serving other monsters, Harry had asked her to arrange his assassination, and make him forget he’d done it. She wondered what Lea would do to her if she knew.

It couldn’t be anything worse than she deserved.

Molly hadn’t thought a thing existed that could hurt this much. They hadn’t even found his body, just a bloodstain, a bullet hole in the side of a boat, and a bloody duster smeared with blood floating on the frigid waters of Lake Michigan. Nothing to bury. She knew Karrin, and Thomas, and a few of the others still held onto hope that Harry was still out there somewhere, still alive. Sometimes she even wanted to believe it herself. She knew it wasn’t true, though. Even if she hadn’t been the one to arrange his death, if Harry was still alive he never would have left Chicago undefended this long. He would have made his way back to the city he loved so much.

“It is never a bad time to learn, Margaret Katherine Amanda Carpenter,” the Leanansidhe said, her cat-slitted green eyes seeming to perpetually playful amusement. “Now is a better time than most. I have been waiting for you.”

“Fomorian were grabbing another kid. That needed my attention,” Molly said, her joints aching from exhaustion.

“As much as I appreciate your dedication to your work,” the Leanansidhe said, moving around her in circles. “You were supposed to go back to your domicile an hour ago. No form of lateness will be tolerated from a student of mine.”

Molly didn’t bother to argue that the sidhe hadn’t ever said that there was going to be a lesson today. She hadn’t known to expect the fae woman’s sudden arrival, and had, in fact, attacked her when she arrived. It wouldn’t make a difference. “Noted, ma’am.”

“We will begin again with shields,” the fae woman said firmly, a sense of dismissal in her voice. The previous conversation, as far as she was concerned, was now irrelevant… it might as well have never happened. “Prepare yourself.” Then, barely a heartbeat later, power flared against Molly’s senses and a ball of ice the size of a hockey puck was flying at her like a bullet.

Molly threw up her left hand, fingers spread. She spat out a word in false latin that meant nothing to anyone but her and her bracelets flared with heat as she pulled stored energy out of them. A half a heartbeat later, flickering sparkles of defensive energy spread from her fingertips into a flat plane. Harry had been able to summon shields that were like walls made of steel. Molly had seen him survive in the center of a bomb blast that had leveled the Raith Deeps a few years ago. Molly had nowhere near the talent for defensive magic that he did, and this might be the best shield she had ever summoned.

It didn’t matter. The hurtling white sphere hit the shield like a tank shell. It would have bounced off of Harry’s. For her, it ripped through, its course only barely bent. The sphere struck Molly in the left shoulder and exploded into diamond-glitter shards of ice as it knocked her back a few steps. The exhausted young woman let out a short, harsh grunt of pain and staggered. She didn’t let herself fall, though… barely two seconds later, a new iceball was headed for her. This time, she was more ready, had more time to gather energy… this one still made it through her shield but it was pushed far enough to the side that it missed her.

A dozen more ice balls came, one after the other… pop pop pop. Some of them she blocked. Most of them she didn’t… she was on one knee, breathing hard. “No, no, no! Focus!” the red-haired woman said. “Use the pain. Make the shield real with your will. Know that it will protect you. Again.”

Molly looked up with her teeth clenched. But instead of saying what she really wanted to say, she raised her left hand once more just as another ball of ice flew at her. This one hit the shield and went through—but its path was attenuated more significantly than the last few. It flew past her, barely clipping one arm. Even so, Molly gasped, panting and trying not to fall to the ground. Magic taxes the endurance of anyone who uses it—and if she used magic she wasn’t particularly skilled with, she would get worn down even faster. And she sucked at this.

Unlike Harry, Lea was a slave driver, and she never hesitated on using every medium at her disposal in teaching her the Art, like she would always refer to it. Harry had been gentle with her… using kind words, and only softly pushing her against the limits that were suited for her. He had taught her the basics of shields by having her kid brothers and sisters throw snowballs at her. Lea, on the other hand, was ruthless… cajoling her to discover the monster beneath her and use it to her own advantage. Urging her on even when she could feel the madness taking over her whole being.

“Yes…” the sidhe woman purred. “Pain is a teaching tool most excellent…” That was what she said each time she complained about her method of teaching, reminding her that Harry had never done it like this. Even now, a year later, she was still getting used to the style of her new mentor’s harsh teaching, and even though she wanted to scream her frustration at the skinny bitch sometimes she usually managed to hold herself back… the woman was strong, and knew what she was doing. Molly was no match for her… not this time, not last time when she had used baseballs, and not next time when she did… whatever she did next.

“That will do for now,” Leanansidhe said. “Tomorrow we shall move up to knives. Now… attend!”

Molly slowly pushed herself up to her feet, walking towards her mentor. Lea reached out for her, and Molly couldn’t entirely stop herself from flinching… not with her new black eye, and split lip, and dozens of bruises. “Rest a moment, child. I can sense that you have a lot of worries buried inside you… waiting for the perfect opportunity to rear their ugly head,” the Leanansidhe said, staring at her with pointed eyes. “It’s a good thing you have mastered the art of control, and knowing how to suppress your emotions. However, you should not suppress every bit of them that you feel. Your emotions give you power, child. You simply need to learn to control them, rather than let them control you.”

That was true. It was also dangerous to someone like her. A warlock. Molly had… she had made some bad decisions, and the thing about making bad decisions with black magic especially was that you needed to truly, completely believe that what you were doing was right to make any magic at all happen. In order to do something horrible with magic, you needed to convince yourself, completely, that that horrible thing you wanted to do was right… and the more you did that, the harder it was to untwist yourself to something resembling normal once again. Conversely, it was much, much easier to make that kind of catastrophically bad decision when in the grip of strong emotion. Harry had taught her that, too. That she needed to be rational about what she did. That she needed to think. Always.

In some ways, Molly was aware that she was better at the “how” of magic than her dead mentor had ever been. Her control was better. Her precision was better. Her focus was better. He had more muscle, but she was better in many ways at figuring out “how” because her lack of strength meant she needed to be smart. But the longer she lived, Molly became increasingly sure she might never be as smart as Harry had been when it came to the “why” of magic.

“I am not trying to suppress my emotions,” Molly said slowly. “I just feel like I’m a pit inside. If you look into my eyes, you’ll find nothing but a long, long drop.”

“That is where you are wrong, dear child,” the Leanansidhe said, her voice caressing her like a pile of snow that had been dumped down the back of her shirt. “You can feel every bit of emotion within you, and you are trying your damnedest to bury it, but that is where I come into the picture. It is my solemn task to yank you out when I feel you slipping down the abyss, and remind you once again that you are a strong witch, and have been tutored by some of the greatest minds to ever exist.”

Closing her eyes for a bit, Molly exhaled, suddenly bone deep tired from it all. She wanted to just escape, even if only for a couple of days. “I want you to dig within you and find the strength to fight through the pain.”

“But I can’t,” Molly insisted, and tears came unbidden to her eyes, rolling down her cheeks. She needed to be strong with everyone. With the other people trying to hold the city together. With her enemies. She couldn’t show any of them weakness… but Lea already knew she was weak. She knew everything about her… and that meant there was no need to hide. “I’m just a juvenile delinquent that had dabbled in a little bit of magic. I’m no Harry Dresden, and will never be.”

“You think too little of yourself and your Art, Molly,” the sidhe woman said. “I want you to fight through the pain. If you can’t do that, how do you hope to conquer the Fomor when they finish gathering strength and finally rise up? You’ve been killing them, one or two at a time, but one day they will come for you, and in numbers. Unleash that passion!”

The skinny woman was right, Molly thought to herself. Harry had destroyed the Red Court of Vampires. Now, the Fomor had risen up to take their place as the biggest threat to Chicago. There was no way she was going to be able to stand against them if she was kneeling on the ground bitching like a little girl, and complaining about her mentor’s teaching style. She closed her eyes and conjured up the power within her. The one that had seen her through many tough times, and the one she had kept buried where the sun didn’t shine. It slithered up her body, like a snake making its way up to her heart. She felt the power surging through her, and the pain that she felt was, at least momentarily, replaced by a sudden strength as she rose from the cold wet ground.

The Leanansidhe rose slowly, keeping pace with Molly, standing toe to toe with her. Molly closed her eyes, and raising her hand upwards, she opened her fingers as the ball of flames gathered in her palms, flying out to surround them, the fire melting the snow covered ground where they stood. Even without her eyes Molly could see in her mind’s eye as the fire grew larger and larger, the Leanansidhe watching the whole scene like an unimpressed spectator. Any mortal would have taken to her heels by now, but the woman stood her ground as the fire engulfed them.

After what seemed like an eternity, Molly’s eyes flew open as the fire died as quickly as it had started, leaving Molly breathless from the spell. They stood in silence for a moment, the only sound that of the falling snow. “Passable,” the Leanansidhe said. “But not excellent. You should be able to perform basic fire magic without it leaving you too exhausted to move, precious child. Your enemies will not give you time to recover.”

“Am I ever going to be good enough for you?” Molly asked in anger, hot tears filling her eyes as she stared at the only woman that had been able to awaken a lot of emotions in her in the last few months.

The Leanansidhe always had a lazy aura like a prowling cat. Looking at her, she gave the impression that she was someone that didn’t like to rush life… someone who would move at her own pace when she felt like it. Sometimes, Molly wondered what she would have done if she was a mortal, and was stuck in a burning building. Hell, the woman was walking around in the middle of winter, wearing a body clinging gown that wasn’t appropriate for the cold, or any occasion for that matter, but at this very moment, she got a firsthand experience at how fast the other woman could be if she wanted to.

She moved fast, that was all Molly could think. One minute she was standing a few feet from her, and the next, she was dashing towards her, grabbing her chin in her hand and squeezing as she forced her gaze up to hers. “Don’t be stupid, child!” The Leanansidhe spat, eyes burning with molten fury. “Do you wish delicate treatment, like some kind of wilting flower? If I were to leave you alone for a week, would you get shot again like you did in Chichén Itzá?”

“Maybe you should do that,” Molly said defiantly, having had enough of the fairy. “I warned you before this training started that I couldn’t see myself doing what you requested of me, but you insisted!”

“Education is not coddling,” Lea hissed. “It is nothing less than the transfer of power from one generation to the next. By coddling you, I would rob you of what you could earn. If my queen commands, I would be happy to abandon you to your weakness, child… but I answer to my Queen. You will do as I say until you are ready, and you are ready when I say. Now quit your childish whining and get back to work!”

They worked back and forth for what seemed like eternity, Molly’s arms burning from exhaustion and pain. All she wanted to do was curl into a ball and just sleep for forever. She couldn’t believe that Sleeping Beauty had had a problem with sleeping for a hundred years, she thought to herself. Right now, she was tempted to start looking around for a spinning wheel to prick her finger on.

The Leanansidhe stood quietly watching her as she fought a hard battle with her spells. Unlike Harry, she wasn’t adept at combat magic, due to her lesser brute magical strength and greater sensitivity to magical energies, but tutoring under the Leanansidhe, she was gradually beginning to grasp that side of her. Lea was right – if she had any hope to win her war against the servitors, she had to at least be able to defend herself.

At least, the sidhe woman held up a hand. “That’s enough for today,” the Leanansidhe said, taking a step away from her pupil while she sagged down against a nearby parked car. “Come. Let us eat.”

“Wh…what?” Molly stammered, wondering if she had heard the faerie woman correctly. Their relationship was simply that of student and teacher. The two of them didn’t go around grabbing a bite of something to eat, and most definitely not with her looking the way she did, and the Leanansidhe looking like a movie star.

“Repast,” the beautiful redhead said with a hint of exasperation. “Sustenance. How long has it been since you had something to eat?”

Molly paused. “I… don’t know,” she answered truthfully. “Maybe three days?”

“Intolerable child,” Lea said, eyeing her. “Come. We go,” she commanded, and walked out of the parking lot. Molly, exhausted, had to rush to keep up.

For once, the night was relatively quiet. Quieter than she was expecting, and quieter than she was comfortable with.

Molly followed the sidhe woman as she walked down the roamed the city, traversing the sidewalks, and moving as silent as ever. Normally, even the nighttime of Chicago was as loud as ever, with cars hurtling down the road and people moving from place to place. As obnoxious as it was to listen to, it was at least consistent, and in a morbid sense it was almost comforting. Even with her wealth of issues, the world kept spinning, and that made her problems feel smaller. Manageable, even. However, as she slowly walked along the cracked sidewalk, Molly noted there was next to no one out tonight. No cars speeding by, nor any pedestrians going to places she would never see. The roads almost felt empty, and sullenly silent outside of distant sounds of things she couldn’t readily identify. Granted, Molly was “used” to such silence. As she knew, Chicago at large wasn’t aware of the fact that there were monsters under their feet. Most of their actions and calamities on ordinary people were instead blamed on “increased criminal activity” and “drug trades growing more violent”, among other factors. As such, many of the meeker folk stayed inside past a certain point, to have the illusion of security…emphasis on illusion. She fought some of the damned things and knew a locked door would do little to dissuade an errant Servitor from taking what they wanted…as morbid as that was.

Even with the powerful sidhe walking down the street confidently in a green dress far too cold for the weather Molly kept moving, keeping her eyes peeled and keeping her wits about her. She passed by a window of a closed shop, peering into it by reflex, looking for threats, and due to the flickering streetlight above she was able to capture a glimpse of herself in it. With her limited resources and limited funds, she had to use whatever was readily available these days, and it wasn’t very flattering. A torn, ragged blanket draped around her like a cloak covered her shredded outfit. Torn black pants with combat boots peeked out from beneath it, as well as a tee shirt too cold for the weather with a brand name across it that Molly couldn’t bother to remember a single song from anymore. A choker was still wrapped around her pale, slender neck, even though the blue and pink dye in her hair had largely faded and grown out, her natural blonde roots becoming increasingly exposed and relegating the colored bits to be bangs. To shroud her identity, and protect her from any members of the council sent to kill her, she had cut the blanket to leave a hood pulled up over her head, and a multicolored bandanna wrapped around her mouth. It wasn’t the best disguise in the world, but her enemies often didn’t get time to critique it… and she roamed around at times when very few people were actively out and about to comment on her sense of fashion.

The Leanansidhe led them to an open diner and they stood before it on the deserted and cold streets. From where they stood, Molly could smell meat grilling, greasy smoke in the air, and her mouth almost violently watered as they moved towards the door with the open sign on it. The fae woman pushed on the door, though Molly noted she avoided touching the metal handle as she did. They walked into a well lit space that sure looked like paradise at the moment to the hungry girl. Just like she was used to doing in the past couple of months, Molly scanned the room immediately, taking note of every little detail. Other than the huge man behind the counter, the diner was almost empty, with the tables and floor sparkling from a recent clean. Two figures sat hunched over a distant table, coffee steaming in their cups as they talked to each other in low tones and paid absolutely no attention to the two newcomers.

“We need you to keep your strength up,” the Leanansidhe said, propelling her towards where the big man stood with a towel slung around his neck behind the counter, his arms bulging as he flipped meat on the grill.

“She’s buying,” Molly said to the man firmly. “Get me a burger, and fries. One for each of us.”

Lea rolled her eyes. “So generous to gift me with my money, precious child,” she said, placing a few crisp dollar bills on the counter.

Molly waited for the food then sat down at a table that let her face the windows, quickly beginning to shove the solid nirvana of grilled meat and fried potatoes into her mouth. She practically inhaled it, wondering how she could have gone for so long without food. Wordlessly, Lea pushed her plate over to Molly without having touched it, and she began to eat that one only a little bit less quickly. Now that she had a little food in her, her eyes burned from lack of sleep, and her joints ached. All she wanted was to curl into a ball and just sleep.

“Ware, child,” Lea said. “Your next challenge awaits.”

She had barely had time to process the words before she heard the sounds of boots on the snow outside. Then a small group of men appeared in the snow through the window, walking confidently towards the diner. Molly’s heart stopped. They were a rough-looking group of toughs, and they weren’t playing around… they carried an assortment of baseball bats, knives, clubs, and firearms as they strode through the snow. Worst of all, beneath their jackets, they all wore black turtlenecks… and that they all needed to cover their necks told Molly everything she needed to know. These weren’t Chicago thugs out looking for trouble… They were Fomor servitors, hiding the gills implanted into the sides of their necks.

“We need to get out of here,” she muttered. “Can yo-” Molly cut herself off abruptly as she looked over and noticed that Lea was gone. The fae woman had either vanished behind a veil of her own that was far, far better than the best that Molly had ever done on her best day, or else she had actually disappeared back into the Nevernever where she had come from far smoother and faster than any mortal could manage. Either way, the message was clear… she didn’t intend to help. This was her apprentice’s challenge… just another lesson.

She calculated the distance from where she sat to the door, and how close they were as her heart sank. Think Molly… think… She felt like an idiot for letting these sons of bitches trap her here. Had they been seen on the way? She never should have followed that skinny bitch here. Molly fumed, standing up as if all hell wasn’t about to break loose, and pushed the table aside. “I recommend everyone get down on the floor,” she said in as commanding a voice as possible as the doors opened and the Servitors began to enter, two at a time.

“Well well well,” Molly murmured gradually as she stood facing them. “I didn’t know you lot were obsessed with fast food. It will ruin your dark credentials. Don’t you have some kind of blood to be sucking, or raw meat from children? If nothing else you could at least go to a Wendy’s instead. Damn… so much for being such a fearsome bunch.”

“You are surrounded, Rag Lady,” one of the ones in the front said, his voice emotionless and plain. Almost robotic. He carried a small submachine gun, something European, and the seashells dangled ominously from his belt the way people carried munitions. “Submit yourself to the will of the master, and your pain will be much shortened.”

“Master?” Molly asked, looking around the diner. “I don’t see any Master. All I see are cowards hiding between turtlenecks and spewing garbage from their mouths.”

“So be it then,” the servitor said, taking a step forward. “My men and I are eager to have a good time with you.”

“Talk is cheap,” she snarled, daring him as the group of servitors continued crowding in, filling up the space by the door. She wanted as much in the way as possible to be a distraction. Then, when she figured that she had gotten the best balance between distance from her and them being crowded she raised her arms high with a cocky smile.

“Guns!” the servitor in the lead yelled, but it was already too late. The rag-covered wizard suddenly broke into several Mollys running through the diner. One of them broke through a window and began climbing out into the parking lot. Another pulled two pistols and began shooting. A third vaulted over the counter and started running. Yet another ran right at them, waving her knife. Absolutely chaos ensued as everyone reacted in their own way. Servitors shot, dodged, and yelled out contradictory commands as they tried to find the real Molly. The fact that as they opened fire in that crowd some of them hit their companions only added to the veracity of the illusion.

For herself, she just veiled herself at the same moment, and slowly climbed backwards over the benches… hopefully out of the line of fire of the indiscriminately firing servitors. She used just a drop of her magic to muffle her footsteps and proceed in her slow escape without so much as sound. Illusionary magic was still easy for her to do, but she paled in comparison to Henry’s power at his pinnacle… Molly furiously shook her head. No time to compare herself to her mentor. She had some trash to take out.

Her illusions were causing incredible chaos. Sheer weight of numbers, however, worked against them. The illusion that had charged at the Fomor servitors was the first to die, shot, dropping to the ground like a bleeding corpse. Molly maintained the illusion even then in the hope she could bait someone into checking on it. A moment later, the one in the parking lot died, shot through the head. Molly held onto the raging spell, knowing she could count on her illusion magic. All she needed was to get the Fomor distracted enough that she could make a dash for the kitchen and out… there was no way she could fight them all, not when there were this many. When everyone was as distracted as possible, she leaped the counter, ran into the kitchen…

And promptly tripped over the cook who was cowering on the floor.

She hit hard, and she could feel even without seeing them the dozens of eyes that turned towards the crashing noise. “Get her!” one of them snapped.

Time to go.

Molly ran. This wasn’t going to be as clean of an escape as she wanted, but at least they needed to go through the kitchen. That would slow them down, choke them off. The thralls of the Fomor were augmented by their mysterious masters. They were stronger, faster, and more durable than normal people… it made them dangerous. They were also, however, slaves to their own limited wits… the Fomor tended to value obedience over intelligence. A flaw that Molly had used to kill them before.

She raced out into the alley behind the diner, hearing the first of the servitors just a handful of steps behind her. She could hear him audibly cracking his knuckles as he approached her. Molly balled her hands into fists, eying the phlegm green dumpster nearby, and slowly stepped towards it, mirroring the slow pace of her aggressor as he stalked forward. “What? Are you getting ready, bitch?” He growled. “Cause when we’re done with you, your body’s getting dumped in there.”

“No,” Molly said with a small, appraising smile. “Just getting ready to toss you in.”

His lips curled into a frown, and he shot towards her with an explosive burst of movement. He was quick. An unexpected move like that would have caught a normal person off guard, but not Molly… She dealt with the fuckers enough to know better. As he rushed forward she clasped her hands and produced a blinding blast of light and sound inches from his face. He recoiled and clutched his face, stumbling backwards. “Grhhh! FUCK! The fuck did you do to my eyes—URK!” His cry died out in a shout as he slammed her shoulder against him, causing him to stumble forward. She grabbed the metal lid of the dumpster and slammed it down with all her might, smashing the servitor’s head between it and the rim of the dumpster several times, quickly as she could. After the sixth slam, she felt him something give with a wet, sloppy sound, and she let him slid down like dead weight, turning to continue running.

“Get that bitch,” the lead servitor growled to the others as he stepped out the door. “Listen will have your hides if you lose her!”

Gunshots rang out just as Molly turned the corner at a dead sprint, going as fast as she could to put some distance between herself and the livid pursuing servitors. She knew she couldn’t take them in a direct fight, certainly not with her magic still as exhausted by her training as it was. Without evocations like Harry could summon up there was no chance o-

Molly furiously shook her head. Not the time to compare herself to him again. Especially not when that could easily cloud her judgment and cause her to make a decisive mistake. Boots met pavement, and Molly was back on the sidewalk, running across it without losing any speed. A quick look over her shoulder awarded her the sight of the servitors hauling ass after her, putting their enhanced stamina to twisted use and easily gaining on her. That left Molly slightly worried; normally there was always something she could trick them into running into to seal their own fate, but this time, there was next to nothing! She needed to break line of sight for long enough to put together another illusion, and with her rings drained of power it wouldn’t be nearly as impressive of one as the multiple-Molly distraction she had conjured last time, but she could do something…

Her eyes flicked to the left. She saw down another alley, and there was a construction site there. It wasn’t the best idea, but she had something. Quickly, she jerked left and sped down the alley, leaping over an overturned trash can and ensuring she kept a semblance of a lead over the ruthless aggressors. Part of her wondered if they would get bored, give up, and fuck off, but she recalled how persistent they usually well… How vicious they were, on account of their Fomor masters pulling the strings and guiding their hands. They weren’t going to stop until she was dead or worse, and with them and the other monsters Harry kept scared away, there was always worse. She shuddered at the thought.

Molly soon reached the construction site. Almost derelict, wooden scaffolding and countless tools littered the area, as well as various construction vehicles. A myriad of things she could use to dispatch the servitors with, using her illusionary trickery. Then, if she made big enough of a mess, she could use the chaos to vanish.

“I saw the bitch go this way!” one of them shouted. “Don’t let her escape!” They were inbound, so Molly used a bit of magic to fabricate a silent copy of herself. One one, but she placed the illusion in the path of a forklift, hiding behind some crates like she hoped to avoid notice. With that, she quickly hid behind it and watched carefully as the Formor’s thralls stepped into the construction site properly, fanning out and looking for her. A few seconds later one of them pointed, and the four nearest to him turned to look at her illusion. “Well well well, what’s the matter? You outta places to run, whore?” The lead servitor walked forward, taking slow steps towards the illusionary Molly. His men hung back, watching from afar with crossed arms and bemused looks on their faces. He was slow with his pace, trying to antagonize and intimidate her. Molly let it be intimidated… slowly flinching back and cowering, taking slow steps backward. She wondered if they would shoot, but they didn’t… if they could, it looked like they wanted to take her alive.

That was a grim thought… but it did give Molly time to work as she used her magic to hide the sound of the forklift door’s opening. The keys were snug in the ignition, though instead of going straight for them to start it, the warlock instead snatched a cinderblock from the ground and pressed it down on the gas pedal. A twist of the keys later, and the forklift started. The second she put it in drive, it soared at the servitor. Her illusion hid the sound… He didn’t even have time to realize what was happening before one of the forklift’s arms rammed into his chest, impaling him and carrying him as the vehicle slammed into a wall. The others all looked in shock in that direction, and Molly was on the move again, weaving through the maze of construction equipment and scaffolding to elude them once more. The moment she was far enough, she readied the same trick, this time putting the illusion right below a small crane’s head, one carrying a bundle of heavy-looking lead pipes. Two more servitors rounded a corner and found her just inches from them. They grabbed at her and without time to think they didn’t even realize they were falling for the same trick until it was too late. The heavy pipes came crashing down on them after they both tried to approach her decoy. Even with their supernatural augments, Molly knew for a fact those fuckers were dead.

And that left one more of that group, who she already heard coming. So, Molly didn’t bother hiding herself as she sped to an open area, and turned to face him just as he mantled over an oversized pipe. She recognized they were at the tail-end of the construction site, and behind her was the main road. Beyond it, however, was a warehouse, one with plenty of places to hide and plenty more to bushwhack someone with tricks. “You’ve given us a whole lotta fucking trouble, bitch,” the servitor’s voice brought Molly back to the present, and she carefully backstepped away from the approaching, enraged servitor. “And you’ve wasted plenty of my boys. So, you know for a fact I ain’t gonna let you get off easy.” He looked towards the warehouse in question. For a half-second, Molly saw him smirk.

Molly’s eyes widened, but she didn’t have a chance to think about what he meant because he suddenly charged at her, forcing her on the retreat again. Molly quickly crossed the barren road and burst through the warehouse’s front door. Inside was a maze of shelves, each stacked high with department store goods. The sort of shit one would find in those dinky dollar stores close to freeways. The goods themselves weren’t what caught Molly’s attention; it was the fact that the bright overhead lights were on. Someone was around.


She whirled around, a spell at the ready, only for the air to leave her as someone punched her in the gut. A second later a second hit, and then a third, and then she was voiding her hard-earned dinner all over the ground in the instant before Molly found herself suddenly on her back, dry-heaving and gasping, her vision blurred.

“See? Just like Listen said. She WAS gonna walk right in here.”

“I know! What a stupid bitch.”

“And now look at her, she’s on the ground like a dying fish.”

All manners of insults assaulted her ears. Molly’s vision gradually cleared, and she realized she was surrounded. Surrounded by thugs. No, not thugs… Servitors.

It finally dawned on her that even as she was leading them into traps, they had led her into one of their own. They had known there were only so many places she could run… and they had driven her right towards one of them where they had been lying in wait. And now the wait was over.

“So,” a voice said, and Molly shivered. She knew that voice. “How much trouble did she give you?”

Listen was a lean and fit-looking man of middling height. His hair was cropped military short, his skin was pale, and his dark eyes looked hard and intelligent. He didn’t look like a particularly devious villain… more like a contractor, or a civilian engineer for the army, maybe. Instead, he was one of the most dangerous people Molly had ever encountered. The leader of the Fomor servitors in the city, she had tried to bring him down half a dozen times, but he always managed to either escape or turn the tables and make Molly run for her life.

Vicious bad guys were bad enough. Vicious, resourceful, ruthless, professional, smart bad guys were way worse. Listen was one of the latter, and Molly would have hated his fishy guts even if she hadn’t just witnessed him murder a child just earlier today.

“Nyeh, she got a few of the boys,” one of the others said with a shrug. “Smashed Sam’s head with a fucking dumpster lid, and impaled Freddie with a forklift. I’d call her crafty… but look where she is now.” He made sure to look right at her. “On the ground, like a fucking stupid bitch. In fact, I’m looking forward to seeing what’s underneath all of that. Boys!”

“Wait, no–!” Molly tried to protest, but their hands were upon her. She half expected Listen to intervene… not out of mercy, but out of efficiency. Instead, he just watched, eyes glinting with something alien that could have almost been something as recognizably human as hatred. The unmistakable sound of fabric ripping and cloth tearing filled her ears, as she quickly felt the cool air of the warehouse’s air conditioner on her bare skin as the servitors tore her blanket shroud and clothes away. She watched the tattered pieces of clothing fly and felt a myriad of eyes on her body. Reflexively, Molly went to cover herself, wrapping an arm around her bare breasts and pressing her legs together to hide her nakedness.

“She’s even got a hooker’s body,” one servitor mused. “Like one of those escorts uptown.”

“Nah, be real,” another chuckled. “she looks like one of those whores you find outside truck stops. The ones desperate for money, hooked on sixteen types of drugs, and got more bugs than they can name.”

“Or one of those desperate girls you see online. Y’know the ones.” They chuckled and laughed. Their harsh words stung like bullets, fueling Molly’s humiliation, but she tried her best to stay strong. She just needed their attention to be diverted just for a little while, and then she could act. Then she could get to safety. “In the meantime, what do we do with her, boss? Kill her, right?”

Molly’s eyes widened as Listen nodded. “Yes. But not yet. My Lord feels that the amount of trouble she has caused is unacceptable, and there has been too much of a legend born around this ‘Rag Lady.’ He wishes that destroyed along with her… an example made. Destroy her. Make sure she feels it.”

“No, wai—” Pain arced up her back as one of the servitors kicked her. It hurt even worse than the gut punch she got earlier, and the servitors followed up, continuing to kick and punch her like she was a hanging bag. Every kick hurt worse than she could imagine, and every painful strike made it impossible to concentrate on even the simplest spell… All she could do was put her arms up and try her best to protect her head, as the kicks continued.

And continued.

And continued some more.

She knew that she was going to be a single massive bruise later, if there even was a later on for her. She tried to stay tough, but as the beating wore on Molly found her resolve crumbling. A sharper kick to her stomach made her cry out, and it earned jeers of amusement from the bastards inflicting the pain. “C’mon, cry some more, you lil’ bitch.” Ungodly agony raced across her scalp, as she realized someone grabbed a fistful of hair. Hands went up to clutch and claw at the wrist of the attacker, just in time for her to see a fist coming towards her face. A fist that struck with dizzying force, sending her crashing against a low shelf. Her vision was blurred again, and blood trickled from her broken nose, fueling the inferno of pain she was trying her best to beat. To overcome enough for her to cast something to get her out of the mess she was in.

A fist swung and caught the side of her head, sending Molly windmilling down to the ground with a shattered wheeze of pain. A foot slammed down onto her wrist, and finally she let loose a tortured scream, clutching her forearm and trying to fruitlessly tug her arm free. “Fuuuuuck! Please, just stop!” She felt the words leave her mouth faster than she could stop them. “J-Just make it stop—” Her words cut off as a second servitor stomped down onto her side next, threatening to crush her ribs.

The servitor crushing her wrist just leered down at her, a twisted grin spreading across his pale face. “Make it stop? Hmm…alright, I’ll make you a deal, little skank.” He stepped off her and the pain in her head reignited as another of the servitors grabbed a fistful of hair, yanking her to her feet. With the hand using her mane like a handle Molly could hardly think, much less muster a defense. “You gave us a lotta trouble, but I’m willing to make the pain stop… if you’ll do something for us.”

“A-And that is?” She gasped.

“Well,” he began with a lecherous, predatory smile still plastered on his face. “if you’re gonna dress like a little cheap whore, you ought to act like one too if you get my drift. Let’s hope you’re at least smart enough to get that, bitch.”

Molly’s stomach turned. She was by no means an idiot; she knew he was getting at her servicing them. Quite literally to suck and fuck for her life, and the thought disgusted her even more than it frightened her considering they had her right where they wanted her. “A-And why should I?! Why don’t you find a cheap whore your own size, fucker?!” she defiantly spat.

The servitor nodded, and Molly’s world vanished in a white-hot hell. Agonizing pain raced up Molly’s leg, dwarfing everything else she’d been through. Molly looked down, and her eyes widened to see her leg bent at a horrifying angle at the knee. The bastard that had kicked her had just horribly broken her leg at the knee.

“You going to behave?” Listen said evenly. “Because they can do worse. You’re dead at the end of this shit anyway. It’s up to you how much pain you get to be in on the way out.”

Molly tried her best to focus through the now mind-numbing pain she was being put through. Focus and try to find a way out… but alas, she saw none. She was faced with servicing them or dying an especially gruesome death… because as she knew well, servitors could easily make her death as long and as agonizing as possible, and they would sleep well that night. Her stomach never stopped turning as she nodded. The hand clutching her head slackened, and she sank to her knees, earning a barely suppressed whimper of pain, when her shattered knee met the cobblestone ground. She bit back the crushing pain and lifted her head, just as the lead servitor stepped in front of her, furiously undoing his belt and loosening his jeans. As much as she wanted to toss a blinding blast of magic in his face, she wasn’t getting far with a bum leg. Not without a plan…. An ironclad plan.

“Now, let’s get to it.” The nameless servitor in front of her finished loosening his pants. Molly looked back up just as his cock flopped free. A turgid mast of a phallus that she reeled away from. She was half-expecting a fish dick or something, considering the work that the Fomor had done to them, but she was at least a little relieved to find that he was normal below the belt. Of course, ‘relieved’ in this case still meant that she was vehemently revolted by even being in its presence.

Molly remained tight-lipped, staring at the cock. She didn’t want to budge. The servitor rolled his eyes, and he grabbed the top of her head. “Open your mouth, or I’m opening it for you. Can’t believe I gotta do all the work for you dumb whores.”

Molly desperately didn’t want to, but with the threat of a gruesome death hovering over her head, she slowly opened her mouth, and she felt the bastard’s cockhead push eagerly right inside of her. The taste hit her like a brick – A musky, foul taste that made her stomach turn. She lost all agency in the matter, though, as she felt the cock slowly slid in and sank into her mouth. It wasn’t her first time. Before she had started to train under Harry she had been through a bit of a… wild phase… for several years. She’d run away from home and been on her own during that time, and while she was still a virgin – technically – it didn’t mean that she hadn’t rounded most of the bases. After Harry had become her sensei, however, he had become the most important man in her life and she had just… sorta stopped looking for anyone else. It had been years since she’d been with a man, and Molly tried her absolute best to stop from gagging and retching from the sensation of the dick plugging her mouth as she frantically sucked in breath through her nose.

As Molly felt the cockhead reach the entrance to her throat, however, her attempt at stoicism failed. Her eyes widened, her fears peaked, and the servitor gave a disgruntled huff, his fist tightening in her hair as he used it like a handle to pull her forward. He mashed his cockhead against the snug entrance to her gullet, pulling and pulling as she choked more and more at the painful pressure, and Molly felt something give with a painful stretching sensation. With a grunt the servitor sank deeper still, and his cock plugged her throat like a clogged drain.

Breathing suddenly became almost impossible and tears budded at the corners of her eyes. “Aaahhh… this bitch’s throat is tight. With how much shit she spouted, I thought it’d be looser than a fucking sewage pipe!” The lead servitor moaned his pleasure, tugging her hair for leverage and sliding himself forward, sheathing more of his gnarled, thick root of a dick down her neck. Her hands clenched and spasmed as she fought the urge to do anything… anything she could do to him right now would only lead to agonizing retaliation, and she knew it. Even so, every frantic breath she took through her nose led to a new jolt of pain from her broken, swollen face that eclipsed even the rest of her battered body and her broken leg. All of it was agonizing, but worse yet it was utterly humiliating. To be used in such a way, like little more than a cheap roll of toilet paper. It only threw fresh kerosene on that feeling of helplessness she felt; if Harry were around, she wouldn’t be in this mess! She wouldn’t be where she was!

Her stomach continued to do flips in her as she endured the cock lodged down her throat, trying her best to bear the sensation and humiliation. The other servitors loomed close, with several already working to undo their pants and fish their own cocks out. Some of the sick bastards were even stroking themselves off, getting their rocks off at the sight of her throat being raped… and worse still, the leering look in their eyes made it transparently clear they were waiting for their turn. Waiting for the first of their number so that they could tear off a piece of Rag Lady next.

Back and forth, back and forth; Molly’s head was dragged along the cock plugging her throat like she was a toy. It damn near choked her unconscious, cutting off her airflow and making her eyes water. She tried her best not to focus on what was happening, trying to push her mind to a happy place. Somewhere distant. Somewhere away. She could barely breathe, and she tried her best to relax her throat and make it easier, to just get it over with… but her tormentor was taking his sweet time in plugging her throat. He fucked her gullet with relentless, dizzying jams of his cock down her neck, making it bulge, and her hands continued to ball and clench into fists, tears trickling down her cheeks.

“Hey! Look!” One servitor called out. “The skank’s crying! Just like that whore we tag-teamed a few days ago!” Their laughter and jeering filled the warehouse, bouncing off the walls and ringing in her ears. “You fellas think she’ll wail like she did when we ran a train on her? Cause that’s what’s coming for this little ho!” More laughter. More jeering. More amusement.

It bothered her. Normally, her resolve was at least strong enough and trained enough to brush off comments like this, but on her knees, battered and bruised, with a cock lodged down her throat, there wasn’t any resolve left, and the tears openly flowed. She had never felt more helpless in her entire life, and it was fucking awful. She couldn’t escape to that happy place… no such place existed for her anymore. Every happy memory she had felt tainted by her guilt and loss, and time spent there felt even worse than the moment at hand – odd though it is, Molly preferred being in the moment with her throat used like a cocksleeve than dwelling on what she had done and what she’d lost. Her throat burned, her tears flowed, her mind couldn’t focus, and she couldn’t think up a spell to repel the fucker. Hell, she couldn’t even bite the cock lodged down her throat with how deep it was! She knew for a fact it would make them change their minds and opt to beat her painfully to death, but even so it might be worth it for the fucking semblance of control! To prove to herself that she wasn’t a weak, little damsel bitch in distress who could only get shit done when Harry was around to hold her hand! And with those toxic thoughts in full swing, there wasn’t a thing she could do about the tears. And for once, she was almost glad her throat was occupied, so the fuckers wouldn’t get the satisfaction of knowing it wasn’t the cock buried down her sore, aching throat that was making her cry.

“Augh… her throat’s tight as fuck,” the lead servitor moaned, tipping her head back and sighing blissfully. He never stopped thrusting and fucking her face, even taking a step forward to ramp his humps up in fervor, much to Molly’s increased humiliation and frustration. The pumping didn’t stop in the slightest, and Molly tried her best to figure something out while he continued to rape her gullet. Like before, nothing came to mind. Nothing that wouldn’t lead to her immediate and painful death. “But I feel like you can do better. So,” the servitor’s grin widened again. His hand moved and darted down. Molly’s whole worth vanished into shockingly intense pain and her sparse breathing was cut off completely by as little as the fucker’s fingers pinching her broken nose shut. It made her jerk around frantically against her will, and only the many hands of the other servitors held her more or less in place as Molly panicked. Her throat vibrated around his cock with her muffled grunts of protest, and he simply shuddered in pleasure. “Aaaaah… that’s what I like. The second you take a bitch’s air away, she starts sizing up like this. It really makes the cunt try, you know?” He looked down at her. “Here’s the new deal, slut,” he said as he held her nose thrust and resumed thrusting and humping away at her face, slamming his groin against her face like a hammer while he kept her nose pinned shut. “I cum, you breathe. I don’t, guess who dies?”

The others mirrored his amusement, laughing, and the realization set in with Molly. That was going to be how she died. She could see the headline now… Vigilante Criminal Rag Lady Found Dead – Raped and Murdered, Choked to Death on Cock. Panicked, Molly scratched and clawed at the fucker’s sides. Her fingernails dug into toughened, Fomor-augmented skin as she desperately tried to pull back. But with the hand over her head, and the fingers pinching her nose shut, she couldn’t break away, and she couldn’t get a breath in! The sick fucker continued to drive himself to the hilt and back, again and again without hesitation nor relent. Worse yet, Molly almost figured he was taking his sweet time in cumming. To make sure she suffocated first. She was still worried about what was gonna happen when he came, but for the time she had bigger worries on her mind… like making sure she had enough air to last until then!

The smug bastard picked up the pace, and his balls slapped against her chin every time with a wet, sloppy noise that only added to Molly’s peaked humiliation. She sputtered and spat out precum-filled spit as she sputtered around his length and tried desperately to get some sort of air whenever his cock retreated… and she could feel herself rapidly running out. Blackness crept into the corners of her eyes, her vision swam and blurred worse than before, her tears continued to run down her pale, as her hands slowly went limp, drooping against her sides as the lack of air made her brain swim and sink. The servitor humped and fucked her face with a sinister grin on his face the entire time, and Molly silently hoped he would hurry up and cum. She was desperate for air at any cost.

“Alright, little wizard bitch! Here… it… COMES!!!” Just as her vision almost faded to black completely, she felt the telltale, disgusting sensation of his cock spasming down her throat. Spurting and twitching, as she felt the unmistakable gooey payload of cum rocket straight down her gullet. He came long and hard, spurting and spewing straight down her throat and into her stomach, but worse yet, she felt him pull back enough to fill her mouth with the salty, horrid tasting cum. And with her lack of air, she sputtered around, causing it to surge up her nose and spurt out between her pinched nostrils. Finally, he let go, and Molly fell back, coughing and sputtering up a storm, as she tried in desperate vain to rid herself of the supernatural load he just filled her with. She heaved and retched, turning onto her side just as she spewed a torrent of the thick slop of cum the fucker pumped down her gullet, splattering it against the cobblestone floor. She couldn’t even tell where it ended, and what was left of her dinner began, especially when it mixed with her earlier vomit from her beating.

“Fucking hell, she can’t even keep cum down like a basic-ass whore,” the same servitor remarked, walking around her, almost like he didn’t want his shoes getting caught in the splatter of cum she was still spitting up. “You can’t even do something that basic right! Why should we keep you alive, bitch?” She tried to utter something. A plea, an insult, anything. But she couldn’t. Her throat was too hoarse with pain, and her focus too gone.

She barely even noticed when the next man stood over her, pulling the belt holding some of the magical seashell grenades they used up and away from his pants as they let his trouser’s drop. His craggy face smiled down at her, his body lined with several marks that she couldn’t make out from her place on the floor. It was obviously some sort of tribal branding, and they had a strange algae look about them. The thug stroked his dick, occasionally pinching the swollen cap of it in a way that she felt sure ought to hurt a normal human man but didn’t seem to bother the servitor. He lowered himself to the floor, kneeling between her spread knees, and reaching up, he grabbed her breast in his hand, fondling it roughly, his other hand still stroking his hard on. Her breasts were fairly large and firm but the Fomor’s thug seemed to wrap his hand effortlessly around one of them, concealing it entirely except for where it bulged from between his squeezing fingers. A moment later, he grabbed the protruding nipple of her other breast and pinched it between her nails until he drew blood.

“God- god damnit!” Molly screamed, her body convulsing. “L-let – COUGH – me go, y-you son- son of a bitch!”

“Save your strength,” Listen said as the torturing servitor let go of her tits. The brute spat a large glob of spit on his hand and began stroking it down his dick as Listen continued to look down on her. “You’ll need it for what comes next.” Without further preamble, Listen backed off, and the other Servitor settled himself between her legs, and Molly flinched as she felt his cock brush the lips of her exposed twat.

Molly had done many things before… but not this. Never this. She had never admitted it to herself, but she had always hoped that… had always hoped that Harry would come around. He had known her since she was a child, but wizards lived a very, very long time… he wasn’t that much older than her and-

The servitor pushed himself into her as she screamed in pain. The barrier inside of her pussy provided absolutely no protection – he went right through it like it wasn’t even there. Her body felt like her insides had been set of fire just from the servitor’s first thrust into her dry, unwilling hole… the Fomors could look human all they wanted, but they were not human, and while the dick inside her had looked human and felt human and tasted human, the unstoppable resilience it showed when plowing through her resistance showed that it clearly wasn’t. For a normal man, plowing through a hole that unready should have felt like fucking a fleshlight filled with sandpaper. Instead, it battered all the way through, and that made it feel to her like it was covered in razor blades.

She pressed her legs together, trying to keep him from moving in and out of her. To the servitors it must have looked like she was an eager whore wrapping her legs around her lover. The gang of rapists pinned her legs down effortlessly, laughing at how pathetic she was… and though they started talking to her she couldn’t hear it. This new violation had broken something inside her, shattered a last bit of her self control, and all the sudden the sensitive mental mage couldn’t stop the meeting of minds.

Molly had felt things before. She was an empath, deeply sensitive to the emotions, thoughts, and feelings of others around her through her magic. It wasn’t always willing, and it wasn’t always good. In her apprenticeship she had been exposed to the horrors of thousands of dying slaves and the despair they felt for themselves and their family… she had felt the hatred of a truly evil and insane man… she had felt the overwhelming, lethal pleasure experienced by a victim of the white court… but most piercingly she had felt the selfish and desperate pain and hunger of a White Court vampire as it lusted for her. It wanted her… not in the way a normal man might want a woman, but with the intensity a starving man looked at a steak. He wanted to rip into her body with his and take her, make her his, claim her body and soul, and made her plead for it in need as he all but ripped the soul out of her body in his feeding frenzy.

That felt a lot like this. The Fomor servitor was angry and hungry in his lust. He didn’t want sex… he wanted to destroy. He hated her, and saw her as something less than human. This wasn’t fucking, and it wasn’t pleasure… his cock was a weapon he was using to hurt her, and if it brought him joy then all the better.

“Lie still, you bitch,” he growled, raising himself up on his arms and using the leverage to drive himself hard in and out of her, making a sound that was closer to a thud than a slap. Molly could feel something wet trickling down her legs, lubricating her pussy further for his mindless fucking, and she hated herself for that. She suspected it was her blood. Whatever it was, it made the work easier for the thing above her. He bent his rough face, grabbing her lips with his dry ones, kissing her as his tongue darted into her mouth, causing her to choke. Without even thinking about it Molly bit down on his tongue, drawing blood.

His goons were still holding down her legs and her hands, so there was no way she could defend herself from the punch she saw coming. Her vision blurred as the servitor thug slammed his fist into her face once, twice, three times, yelling expletives at her. “You cunt bitch!” he yelled at her as she bled, still pounding away on top of her. “You fucking whore! You think you can defy us? You’re just a human, good for nothing but being chattel!”

The whole time he beat her, he never stopped fucking her. His tempo increased, and it seemed the angrier he got, the bigger he grew inside her. Molly wondered how that was possible, but her brains seemed too rattled for her to indulge her curiosity… She was bleeding from every part of her face, and her legs and arms were covered in red scrapes from where the Fomor’s fingers had dug in. All she wanted was for all of this to end. It seemed funny to her now how Murphy and the others had thought she had hit rock bottom, she mused. If they saw her now, they would realize that they had been wrong… this was rock bottom.

And none of them would think she was capable of rising up above this ever again.

She felt the servitor above her convulsing, his ugly face contorting in pleasure as he deposited his juices into her. She felt every bit of that pleasure through his mind. She was in hell, and he was in paradise… she was dying, and he was going to live on and keep kidnapping and enslaving and dominating. Molly was completely lost, drifting as she rode his pleasure and the idea of what he thought of her. She wondered if this was what dying felt like. Many people had told stories of seeing a bright light at the point of death, but in her case, there was no bright light, only lush greenery. She was wearing a summer gown and she trailed her fingers all over the grasses surrounding her, the bright sunlight burning in her eyes, causing her to throw her head back in abandon.

The Fomor Servitors had gone crazy as they did unspeakable things to her, and through it all, she watched them with dazed eyes, unable to fight back. Her head was reeling, and she watched as Listen pushed his goon atop her away, beginning to shove a baseball bat’s handle into her pussy. That brought her back to her senses – she screamed, certain that it was drilling a hole so far into her that Molly feared the bulb in the handle would pop out her mouth. It had to… it just had to.

She had to fight back, she thought blindly, rousing from her torpor of laying in a peaceful field. Filled with so much fury, she attempted to push Listen and the baseball bat away from her, kicking him away with her good leg. She didn’t care what they did to her anymore. She wasn’t going to go down with a fight, and if she struggled enough she could force them to finish her off. Molly thrashed, and the suddenness of it surprised the Fomor servitors holding her down. They fell away from her arms and legs and Molly tried to move blindly, the room spinning around her.

A moment later they surged at her back, a wave of psychic fury proceeding them that warned Molly of agony to come. A second later the pain arced up her side as one of the servitors drove his foot into her side. The kick definitely cracked a rib and sent her sliding and rolling across the floor until her back slammed heavily into one of the metal shelves. That shelf began to tip and list, swaying back and forth, and people started shouting. For just a moment, everyone’s eyes were off of her and eying the shelf, concerned the heavy metal containers on it were about to fall.

It was the last chance Molly was ever going to have.

She grabbed at one of the belts the seashells hung from. The moment their eyes were back on Molly and they realized what she had done, she screamed, and put all the magic she could muster into the simplest, uglier evocation she was capable of – a raw, blinding flash of light that pulsed out from her. Every one of them was caught by it… even if some of them managed to close their eyes they were still all temporarily blind. Molly whipped the seashells at them like the grenades they served as, and the shouting from the group redoubled. She forced herself up to one leg and pushed herself along the shelves, hobbling on one leg with a third leg hanging from her ruined cunt, letting out a bitter, muffled sound of pain. It was everything she could do to leave an illusion of herself on the ground still, curled in the fetal position.

Then the grenades started going off with a whine and a pulse of furious magical energy, and Molly crawled on as quickly as she could. It didn’t matter that she was naked, that she was injured, that she felt worthless… if she didn’t make it out, right now, then she was dead. Desperately she switched to stumbling forward, keeping both hands on her broken knee in the hope it might support her weight just long enough to make it out of her. She had to use her magic to choke off the sobbing screams she let out… Sobs that were born from mind-numbing pain, but also the crushing, humiliating realization that without Harry, she was nothing.

She collapsed in the snow outside the warehouse and did not move.

“It’s alright, child,” a voice said.

Firm, warm hands were on her. Holding her. The pain in her leg faded to numb coldness as she was lifted off the ground, the weight no longer on it. “You did well enough. You survived. Let me take it from here.”

Without the Leanansidhe’s help, she would have laid here until she died… she couldn’t take care of herself. Harry was gone. She was worthless. And once again, there was no one to blame but herself.

Carried in the elder fae’s arm, Molly let unconsciousness cover her up, and she didn’t struggle.


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