Chapter 12 – The Knight and The Dominatrix

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Pauline tried to steady herself inside this new emanation, but something told her that she was not in charge. She noticed a sensation that was hard to articulate, but which mirrored how she felt when she was in Simon’s body when she first encountered Jon in the portals. It soon dawned on her that, once again, she had entered an emanation that was not her own.

Remembering Ka’s warning about the ripple effect when infiltrating someone else’s emanation, she wondered why she had arrived here and not in one of her own. Before she could take over the focus of this body she heard the woman’s voice again. This time it was internal and frightening.

“What in the hell is that?”

Pauline was able to quietly slink back like a passenger in a large vehicle. She did her best to still her thoughts as she waited to see what would happen. A weak male voice came from a few feet away.

“Mistress?”

A man stripped down to his underwear was crouching like a dog on the floor at her feet in the dingy room. He was small but pudgy with a receding hairline. The beading sweat dripped down off his forehead as he trembled and waited for a response.

Then he squealed when she suddenly whipped him across the thigh with a riding crop. Pauline was horrified but she continued to lay low inside the mind of this dominant woman. She looked down and saw the dark skin, strong body and tight black leather. The thigh-high boots, black rubber gloves and chained pants made it obvious that this was the emanation of a dominatrix.

“Do not speak until spoken to. You know the rules, you dirty maggot.”

He nodded furiously and seemed to be afraid, but Pauline could detect the secret pleasure behind his beady brown eyes.

“Wait here and stay quiet.” She ordered in her rich, deep voice.

She stormed out of the room. Pauline was surprised to see an upmarket apartment as she made her way to a bathroom. It seemed that the room she’d come from was deliberately set up to look like a dark dungeon. When she made it through the door and stopped in front of the large mirror, she nearly gasped, but remained silent.

The woman was black, attractive and imposing. She was over six feet tall – at least in the boots – and seemed to be powerfully independent. She stared into her own eyes but it became clear that Pauline still wasn’t in charge. The woman was obviously trying to figure out what was going on. She leaned down, opened a drawer and plucked a bottle of prescription pills out of a small basket.

Pauline could see that they were valium. The date the prescription was filled stated November 12th 2016. The address of the pharmacy was Collins Street, Melbourne. Pauline felt a thrill permeating her soul. She was back in her own place – her own time. As she marveled over things such as, “Is she Indigenous?” and “Why did I end up in this body?” she found the mouth opening and swallowing three pills, chased by a swig of water.

Looking through the eyes as the woman stared once again at her own face, Pauline finally realized that she had an opportunity to get back home, but how was a gargantuan question. The woman then went over to a desk in the gorgeous living room that looked like it was straight out of a luxurious catalog. She grabbed an envelope that had several hundred dollar bills in it and began making her way back to the dingy room.

Pauline noticed that she was beginning to feel drowsy. She remembered the pills and freaked. Was she being affected by the drugs? The emanation seemed to be able to cope but Pauline felt like she was taking the brunt of the chemical onslaught. When the door slammed shut, the noise came to Pauline in waves. The man was waiting patiently but she heard the woman’s voice speak softly for once.

“Michael, I’m sorry but I’m not well. Here’s your payment. Let’s pick this up next week.”

She went over and handed the envelope to him, noticing the disappointed look on his face. He didn’t argue but he pushed her hand away gently.

“No. Keep it. You’re worth it, Madam Lynx. I hope you’re feeling better next time.”

She nodded and led him into the living room where he started dressing in an expensive looking suit. He didn’t take long to get ready and she was soon walking him to the door. Pauline was in panic mode now. Her mind was struggling to maintain consciousness and she worried about losing her grip on this emanation. If she left and ended up somewhere else, it could be an eternity before she had the chance to get home again.

When she found herself going over to sit at the desk, she tried to scream to alert the emanation. She saw the hand place the money in a drawer and open up a laptop. The sleepiness was almost overpowering. She had no idea what to do.

***

At that time, Jon was opening his eyes and struggling for breath. He was horrified to notice that he was still in a space suit, but at least he was inside a structure – even though it was unfamiliar – and not suspended vicariously among the stars. When he saw movement close by he gasped and began to back against a wall. Suddenly large blasts of white clouds billowed down from above in short bursts.

Through the mist he saw another astronaut pressing buttons on a panel. He then took his helmet off and stomped over to Jon, gesturing frantically for him to take his helmet off as the mist dissipated. Jon noticed that he couldn’t breathe. He panicked and lurched around until the other man came over and fiddled with the rim of his helmet.

Once he’d wrenched it off Jon’s head, he yelled angrily.

“What’s the matter with you?!”

Jon noticed the strong smell of metal in his nostrils, but before he could answer or ask any questions, he felt the familiar sensation of being sucked out of the body. Then the swirling, metallic patterns distracted him. He was plummeting through another vortex, which seemed to be a kaleidoscope of copper, silver and gold ribbons.

As he screamed inside his mind and begged to know what was happening and why; thinking that he was trapped inside a bizarre nightmare once again, the feeling of being slammed into a tight vessel distracted him. Almost too afraid to open his eyes, the curiosity soon took over.

His face and head was enclosed in tight metal and he found himself peering through a series of slits that were placed close together horizontally. He couldn’t make sense of what he was seeing and the occasional movement of whatever he was on top of unnerved him. He now realized that his whole body was encased in rigid metal and he was in a sitting position with his legs astride something powerful and organic.

Whatever the creature was, it seemed to be moving and twitching on the spot. He could sense the strong muscles as it shifted slightly every now and then. Jon panted like a dog and noticed the warm air and condensation inside what felt like another helmet. He remembered the space suit and began to panic even more. Reaching up to try and feel what was on his head, he noticed that his hand was also encased in rigid material.

Claustrophobia started to build inside him, like it had when he was suspended in space. He knocked the helmet off his head in a clean, swift jerk and it bounced heavily and loudly on the ground with a reverberating clang. When he looked down he saw that he was wearing a suit of armor – from neck to toe. He also saw that he was perched on a large, glistening, black horse.

It stomped quietly, like it was trying to restrain itself and inadvertently kicked the helmet out of the way. Jon was on the verge of hyperventilating. He noticed that he was sweating profusely inside the armor. When he glanced to the left and right he saw that he was flanked by soldiers, clergy and royalty. When he focused on the scene in front of him he was shocked to see that they were on a giant chessboard.

About a mile ahead of them was the enemy line. They were all in white and shimmering in the hazy atmosphere. Looking up he saw the universe and thought that he would faint, but he began to cry instead. The frightened, inner child was taking over. He didn’t recognize the irony of the layers inside this emanation. One thing he did feel was the sensation of being a spiritual Matryoshka doll.

“What’s happening to me?!” He bellowed mournfully, in a surprisingly deep voice.

A pawn stationed in front of him giggled, while the Bishop bent down, picked up the helmet and handed it back to him. His snooty face revealed the disdain he was obviously feeling for Jon’s outburst.

“Contain yourself, Knight! Hold fast!”

Jon absent-mindedly clutched the helmet to his chest and continued to blubber like a baby.

“You don’t understand. This is a huge mistake. This isn’t me!”

The King then leaned forward and yelled angrily.

“Silence – you impudent scoundrel!”

Then a huge shadow washed over the scene. When Jon looked up he saw an expansive, black mass looming above their heads. As it swiftly descended, he realized that it was a massive hand.

“Hold fast!” The Bishop repeated hastily. Then he turned to Jon and hissed, “Put your helmet back on this instant!”

Jon continued babbling while the Bishop snatched the helmet out of his grip and slammed it back on his head. As soon as he’d done so, Jon felt warmth approaching from above.

The pressure of a single gargantuan finger pushed him down for a split second, then he felt the horse begin to prance and clip-clop across the board – two squares vertically and then one horizontally – as Jon shrieked and panicked. When the horse stopped it whinnied loudly. Jon was gripping the animal tightly with his thighs as he simultaneously squeezed his eyes shut, praying that he would soon wake up.

When he finally opened his eyes he felt the sweat drizzle down his shuddering face and quivering lips. He was momentarily relieved that the horse had stopped, but was horrified when it suddenly reared up on its hind legs and majestically waved its front hooves in the air in a pompous show of provocation. John tumbled backwards and slammed hard on the ground. The jarring was all-encompassing but he could hear the horrified gasps from behind him.

“Get back on, you moronic good-for-nothing!” The King yelled.

Many of the pawns sniggered. When Jon struggled to get up he looked back and saw the Queen waving a black handkerchief at him.

“Do get up, Johan!” She said in a flirtatious yet cajoling tone.

She was breathtaking and draped in layers of the darkest purple. When he finally got to a standing position, a loud voice boomed overhead.

“REPLACE THE FAULTY KNIGHT!”

Jon was flabbergasted when he saw another black knight stomping across the board towards him, but he didn’t see the giant fingers swooping down from above. When he did look up it was just in time to see the middle and index fingers pinch together, preparing to flick him away. He began to dart around clumsily in a futile effort to evade the inevitable. While all the chess pieces on both sides laughed and jeered and the squeaky, scraping noises of the joints in his armor filled his ears, he felt the impact.

As he was ejected up in the air and hurtling through space, he screeched like a psychotic bird before passing out.

***

Back in Melbourne, Pauline was fading fast but an idea suddenly occurred to her. What if she could will her consciousness to transfer the sensation of drowsiness to the emanation’s body? She instantly focused on that idea and was surprised when she began feeling more alert. The dominatrix shook her head and spoke aloud in an amused voice.

“Wow – that was fast!”

Pauline saw that she was opening up a spreadsheet and documenting the payment. Now she was firing on all cylinders. She took over the emanation’s body and was able to open another tab so that she could perform a Google map search. She typed in the address she found on a bill at the back of the desk and then requested directions for her house.

She was thrilled when she saw that she was only a few blocks away. Realizing that she was still wearing dom gear, she raced around until she found the bedroom and took out a pair of sensible slacks and a jacket. It took a while to peel off the tight clothes and boots. Pauline couldn’t resist taking a look at herself in the mirror once she was stripped down to her underwear. She marveled at the lovely muscle tone and smooth, dark skin.

Realizing that she had no time to waste, seeing as the medication might wear off soon and the emanation might take over, she quickly slipped on the alternate clothes and some flats, before heading out the door.

Even though she had no idea what she was going to do once she made it back home, the driving thought was to at least get there. She walked briskly and did her best to fight off the remnants of the drug’s influence. As she passed the familiar landmarks and buildings, the emanation started to drift up in her consciousness. Pauline did her best to maintain control as the dominatrix’s thoughts swirled around in her mind.

“What in the hell? What’s going on? Did I take the wrong pills? Jesus – I must be dreaming!”

When she rounded the corner and saw her house she nearly burst into tears. Remembering that no one should be home – which was ironic seeing as she and Jon were technically missing in action while the automatons continued living their lives – she crept up the driveway and fished out the fake rock from the garden near the front porch. She slipped the spare key out from inside and went over to the front door.

She heard barking from inside and her heart skipped a beat. Roman appeared at the window next to the door and growled while she fiddled with the key.

“It’s okay, Roman – it’s Mummy!” She whispered in the deep, velvety voice.

Roman cocked his head and whimpered for a fleeting moment, but then returned to growling protectively. She gingerly unlocked the door and slowly pushed it open. Roman hesitated to leap on her and backed away as he alternated between growling and whimpering. Pauline closed the door behind her and found the tears rolling down her cheeks.

The relief of finally being in her own home in her own time was overwhelming, even if she wasn’t inhabiting her own body. She knelt down in front of Roman and did her best to sound like herself.

“Hey Romy – it’s me. Mummy loves her big boy so much. Don’t be afraid. I’m here inside this body. I won’t hurt you!”

With that, he flattened his ears and gave her his signature doggy smile, then leaped forwards – licking and sniffing. Many times, he backed up and cocked his head – still whimpering and obviously confused. She grabbed at his familiar fur and snuggled him tightly as she cried and continued the baby talk.

Once he calmed down she began walking through the house. It was apparent that automatons had been living there. The atmosphere was somewhat sterile. It felt like the rooms were frozen in suspended animation. She looked at the clock and saw that it was nearly five p.m. Her shift at the library ended at four thirty so she knew the automaton would be there soon.

All she could do was lie in wait, but what was the next step in her muddled plan? The dominatrix would soon shake off the effects of the valium and Pauline wasn’t certain about how much control she could maintain over the body.

Using her own instincts, she reasoned with herself that maybe she could convince the emissary who was controlling her body that she was the true owner. Then she could slip back into her own skin and try to convince the dominatrix that she had invited her for coffee after meeting at the library one day.

While she sat in the kitchen and raced to come up with answers, Roman began to bark. She looked up and saw her own body at the door. A cold sweat came over her that felt like it was bursting from her soul and beading on the dark brown skin of the emanation’s body. The pit of her stomach was performing a raucous game of leapfrog.

When the automaton finally came in – expressionless and staring blankly at Roman – it took a while for it to focus on the dominatrix. Pauline gulped audibly. The automaton closed the door behind her and then stopped in her tracks. Pauline was mortified to see that her body had gained at least fourteen pounds. It was too bizarre to be staring at her own body from another perspective.

The blood solidified in the emanation’s veins like a snap-frozen series of rivers when the automaton spoke in a strange voice – sounding like a beetle clicking through a megaphone.

“Finally – you’ve found your way home, Doelanda!”

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