Friday, December 05, 2008

A Painter's Price by Kira Stone

A Painter's Price
by Kira Stone

cover art by Kassie Thrace
ISBN (13): 978-1-60521-097-1
Genre(s): Paranormal
Theme(s): Magic and Mayhem, Gay and Lesbian
Length: Novella


Erik the Painter once lived a life of decadence and debauchery, sparing no thought for the turmoil his wanton behavior created in the households where he stayed. His callousness earned him a visit from the King's mage... and the curse that keeps him alive through the centuries. He now exists solely to create. He has no mortal needs or concerns, save for the one night a year when he must sacrifice a piece of his soul to survive... until he has nothing left to give to his art.
Jason has studied not only the work of Erik the Painter, but everything he could learn about the elusive man. When his dream to meet the artist and the chance to discover the secret behind his centuries-long career comes true, Jason isn't prepared for the powerful erotic feelings the artist provokes in him. Yet his need to touch Erik slowly overrides every other, until there is nothing he can do but surrender, mind, body and soul. Together, in a magical journey, they learn the true cost of A Painter's Price.


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This is one fine orgy. The self-congratulatory thought filtered through Erik’s lust-fueled mind as he licked expensive red wine off the impressive cock bobbing before his lips. Who his mystery lover was, Erik couldn’t say. He had a nice meaty shaft, though. Not terribly long, but wide enough to split a man open. Erik’s sphincter spasmed just from imagining the feel of that thick cock sliding into him.
Salty-sweet pre-cum hit his tongue. He gave his lover’s ass a slap to bring forth another drop. Nectar of the gods, as far as Erik was concerned. Every man tasted different, and yet he loved them all.
“Oh, fuck me,” the man whimpered around his mouthful of Erik’s cock.
“Not this time.”
The spirit was willing, but the body grew weak. He’d been going at it, in one form or another, for several days now. The need for a long, uninterrupted sleep gnawed at him. He was hard pressed to keep his eyes open. Silently promising to make it up to his lover later, if he remembered, Erik sucked in earnest.
His lover attempted to return the attention. Erik winced as teeth caught his sensitive skin. All the more reason to end this quickly, he decided. At the moment, this man needed more education than he had the patience for.
His lover bucked and groaned under him. It didn’t take long to coax him into orgasm. Seed spilled across Erik’s tongue in a honey-sweet river. He drank down every last drop, feeling it was his due for the hard work he’d put in.
Under his guidance, the man continued to pleasure him with hand and mouth. Finally a weak orgasm rolled through Erik in quiet surrender, proving he’d been right about his need for a lengthy respite. He might have stayed awake long enough to mumble a word of praise before he lost himself in the warm, dark embrace of sleep.
* * *
A cool breeze ripped through the room some time later. The long brocade curtains surrounding the bed writhed, and the firelight flickered as though it were about to die in its wake. That alone would not have disturbed Erik from his well-earned slumber. No, a great booming voice startled him out of a deep sleep.
“Since you love your art above all else, I hereby sentence you to an eternity of creation.”
“What?” Fear trickled through the horrible hangover clouding Erik’s brain. Though he couldn’t yet see the shadowy figure standing beside the bed through his bloodshot eyes, he recognized the voice. The king’s mage was not pleased, and that was never a good thing.
“For the rest of your life, you will produce some of the finest art ever created.”
Well, that didn’t sound so bad. Painting was, after all, his passion. “Errrr… thank you.”
A sneer entered the mage’s voice as he continued. “Your creative energies will be your only sustenance. You will not eat or drink or sleep. You will not be troubled by mortal weaknesses except on the one night a year when the price of being the greatest painter alive must be paid to me, a fragment of your inner spirit to be given to a vessel of my choosing. You will exist solely to create… until your soul is empty.”
Now that last bit seemed a little extreme. Honestly, Erik didn’t know what good his soul was doing for him, but he didn’t think it would be wise to go around without one. “Is that really necessary? Painting is all I’m good at anyway.”
“Painting… and debauchery. The king has lost all patience with the discord you create among his court with your callous, self-indulgent behavior. Could you not even leave the livestock alone?” the mage muttered with disgust.
“That wasn’t me,” Erik protested as he tried to extract himself from the tangle of limbs pinning him down. A small corner of his brain wondered again who the bed belonged to, how long he’d been in it, and if his host’s largess would hold out until he had a bite of bread and cheese, maybe another mug of wine.
“Not in body, perhaps, but the act was done with your encouragement. You sow depravity into the souls of the good people of this land, leaving a trail of broken marriages and broken hearts behind. The king will have no more of this debauchery!”
“I hardly think all the consequences of the court’s questionable behavior can be blamed on me.” Erik looked around for his clothes, a little intimidated to be talking to the king’s mage without a stitch on. However, every garment he found smelled rank with spent passion. He flipped the bed curtain over his lap instead. “I enjoy a good party. What soul doesn’t? That’s human nature, not a crime.”
“The evidence is quite plain, and the king has rendered his judgment. He left it to me to determine your punishment. After a fortnight of observation, I see the only way to change your ways is to give you exactly what you desire.”
Warning bells clamored in his head, but Erik couldn’t puzzle out exactly what about that statement troubled him. “Would the king be satisfied if I left the city for a few weeks?” Surely he could convince one of the rich lords in the outlying districts to keep him sheltered and fed for a month.
“Your departure might satisfy him, but it will not satisfy me. From this day forth, you will breathe art, dine on creative passion, and survive as long as your depraved, artistic soul can sustain you.” The mage’s robes rippled as if an angry fall wind had whirled around him. “As I will it, so mote it be,” the mage intoned with an earth-shaking power.
And, just like that, Erik’s life transformed.

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