Long had I grown accustomed to my minion’s gloomy attire, but she now wore the gloomiest attire of all: mourning garments in a black only slightly darker than my soul.
So much ceremony wasted on a lowly worm who had defiled that busty raven-haired beauty, one who would’ve better suited an all-powerful warlock.
But everything changed after that day, and Count von Batstein III was greatly inconvenienced.
I had enjoyed living in the basement of the house of corpses. My minion could focus the entirety of her attention on me and scratch the spot on my belly that makes my hind leg twitch and tell me what an evil boy I am, oh yes I am.
But in this new place, a place filled with far too much sunlight, she would mostly sit atop her bed and stare out the window while I compelled her to pay attention to me.
One worm was little different from another, each one splattering beneath a warlock’s boot, but she wept and whimpered until I wished my adorably fuzzy ears could curl up on themselves and seal out the sounds.
My minion was fortunate that there were fresh worms to do my bidding in this place that reeked of hair products (one of my formerly favorite brands, if my tiny, wet nose didn’t fail me) and simmering vegetables.
It was imperative that each worm swiftly learned who ruled over them now.
I might have lost my reserve virgin, but he was easily replaced by a nearly identical one.
OBEY ME, FOR I AM YOUR NEW MASTER.
“…Would you like to go for a walk, Count von Batstein III?” (I appreciated his formal use of my full name.)
Count von Batstein III did want to go for a walk.
When the skies darkened, my minion wandered out of her room to write on the balcony, where a desk and chair had been set up for her exclusive use by my reserve virgin.
But more often than not, she dissolved into her usual weeping.
“I can’t write anymore,” she whimpered. “How can I, Batty?”
I was Count von Batstein III, one of the most powerful warlocks to ever walk the earth on four paws, my mind filled to the brim with ancient, arcane magicks that would have otherwise been lost to time…
But for her, I had no answer.
I was soon distracted from my minion’s plight when the queen of light, the only one who might break my dark, terrible curse, strode into my lair. Her daring was impressive; her intellect, considerably less so.
But no queen traveled without a minion of her own.
BEHOLD MY DOMINANCE. FEAR FOR YOUR LIFE, QUEEN OF WORMS.
To my immense displeasure, the queen of light departed…and left only her minion behind.
A minion whom Count von Batstein III was now forced to compete with for resources.
Has my rival ever seen herself eat? Vile!
“Don’t even try it, mister,” said my food-providing worm. “You already ate sooo much that Rhys Straud barely has anything for lunch.”
And yet Count von Batstein III effortlessly maintains his trim figure, worm.
The worm the others considered to be the master of this place was a buffoon unworthy of my notice.
However, even a buffoon should know his place.
(My only regret was that he wore nothing beneath his robe–and that any dangling fleshy bits were well out of reach of my sharp teeth.)
I most looked forward to bedtime, when my minion would pluck me from the floor and set me down on the bed beside her without fail. Still, she was too restless to let me sleep easily, tears streaming down her face as she lay there.
Eventually, she would fall asleep, and I would lick her tear-stained cheeks.
But tonight, the creaking of the mattress woke me…
“Go back to sleep, Batty,” she whispered, before standing and exiting the room.
The door shut firmly behind her, leaving me trapped here alone. I awaited her return…
…To no avail.
Where had my minion gone…and why?