Steel Strawberry

2: マニョーリャフヌイユ

Chapter 2: Magnolia and Fenouil

Note: This is a girls love, female muscle expansion, breast expansion, and lactation story. If those themes do not interest you then please do not read this story.

La Maîtresse les Éléments, Magnolia? Danni didn't understand. Why did she say that?

Her eyes weren't focusing where she wanted them too. She tried to move her hands, but they stayed in place. Melody, Dr. Eisenberg, Mrs. Simpson, the green girl, and the janitor still stared, waiting for her to make a move. Colorful auras surrounded everyone, swirling around their bodies.

Why can't I move? she thought. Everything felt sluggish and distorted. Was she dreaming? She had to be; nothing made sense. Mrs. Simpson wasn't a monster. The janitor wasn't a monster. Melody wasn't a muscle-bound hulk with white hair and eyes. Danni hadn't transformed into a sexy adult nor had she killed an invisible demon worm. Goddesses didn't exist.

Let me wake up now! I wanna wake up!

"So this is my new body," Danni's mouth said. Her hands moved to her basketball-sized breasts and squeezed them playfully. "Oh yeah! It's awesome being alive again!" She stretched luxuriously, sighing with pleasure.

Danni struggled to comprehend how she was saying all of that when she wanted to say something more along the lines of "What's going on!"


Danni's head turn to look at the green girl. As Danni looked at her, she realized she recognized the girl as a rare type of Fae called a Dryas, which were a race of humanoids that were partially plant. Dryas tended to be allied with Déméter, and avoided human settlements.

But why do I know that?

"So, what's the problem girl?" Danni's mouth asked.

"The monsters in front of you!" the Dryas cried in frustration. Danni didn't blame her; she felt just the same way.

"Danni?" Melody asked.

"Magnolia?" Mrs. Simpson asked. "I don't know what this is, but we can find out after implanting a Guiruchong in you!"

Danni's mouth curled into an arrogant smirk. "Sorry guys; I'm gonna have to pass on that. Got anything else to offer?"

The janitor lashed out with his claws. "We only offer death!" he cried savagely. He came running at her, faster than she would've imagined. Danni sidestepped him even faster though, and in one adroit movement, grabbed his wrist and plunged the claws into the wall. He writhed and shrieked, but he was thoroughly pinned in place.

Danni's body whipped her head up to look at Melody. "Hey, muscle girl!" she yelled. "You've got super-strength. Use it!"

As if liberated from a trance, Melody nodded weakly. "Oh yeah!" She slammed her shoulder against Mrs. Simpson. The blow knocked the woman over with a grunt.

Danni's body ran to Dr. Eisenberg and grabbed her arm. "What're you standing around for!" Danni's mouth demanded. "Get out now! I'll take care of your friend!"

Dr. Eisenberg went scrambling out as fast as she could manage. Danni's head turned to the janitor prying himself from the wall. Melody was holding Mrs. Simpson down awkwardly. She seemed to not want to use her full strength against her opponent.

Danni's hand clamped over the janitor's throat. He gurgled and thrashed, but she squeezed harder and he calmed down. Danni wondered how her grip was so strong.

"Hey buddy," Danni's mouth said, dropping to a threatening tone. "What did we ever do to you? Why'd you guys attack these fine people, eh? That wasn't very nice of you."

The beastly janitor struggled. "You know too much," he wheezed. "A Guiruchong came in here, and you somehow killed it. We have to either infest you or kill you."

"Guiruchong…" said Danni's mouth. "Those worms my mistress showed my host. Danni? Yeah, that's her name. She's awfully feisty, not going to sleep like she should."

"Danni, what is going on?" Melody cried. Her cheeks were streaked with tears and she looked terrified.

"I'm not Danni," Danni's mouth spoke. "I'm only using Danni's body as a vessel. I'm Magnolia, champion of Earth. Nice to meet you…Melody? Yeah, that's how she recognizes you."

Despair settled over Danni. She was a prisoner in her own body, hijacked by an alien intelligence. She had to admit, the changes were remarkable, but she wasn't able to exert any control over herself.

These damn earrings! They did this to me!

"Hey, cool it girl," Danni's mouth—no, Magnolia—said to Danni. "We gotta share this body for now."

Mrs. Simpson began to laugh, her voice hoarse and chocking. It was like something had died in her throat. "So you're just like the Guiruchong, Magnolia! You invaded poor little Danni and took over her body! At least the Guiruchong merely give their hosts greater power! You stole that girl's body!"

Melody looked up at her, her eyes wide and teary. "No…Please, you're still Danni, right?"

Magnolia sighed and shrugged her shoulders. "Come on, really? I'm a symbiotic creature, strengthening my host and using her to save Earth. We need each other to survive. You though…"

Magnolia suddenly twisted the janitor's head around, the crack of his broken neck sickeningly clear. Danni screamed inside her own head as she watch the lifeless body drop to the floor with a heavy thud. Melody cried out too, horrified. The aura slowly faded away.

"…you're just parasites."

Magnolia walked over to Melody, all humor gone. "Kill her now, Melody," Magnolia ordered grimly. "She's only a danger to us alive."

"No! I won't kill Mrs. Simpson!" Melody insisted. She was terrified and crying, trembling atop the thing that had replaced her neighbor.

"Danni," Mrs. Simpson said, suddenly all afraid and harmless, "remember how I attended the fundraisers at your school? I baked cookies. Remember how you said they were the best you had?"

Danni remembered all too well. Mrs. Simpson came in with a box of chocolate chip cookies, perfectly moist and warm. She had laughed and joked with the students. Danni had complimented her on her skillful baking. How did it happen that Mrs. Simpson would turn into a monster and try to kill her?

Magnolia lowered herself to Mrs. Simpson's level and looked her in the eyes. "I'm not Danni," she said coldly. "Melody, kill her or move aside so I can do it."

"We can find a cure!" Melody insisted. "Bring her back to normal! Please, we have to try!"

Danni strained to regain any control over her body. If she was having any effect she couldn't tell. Magnolia didn't budge.

Please don't kill her! You can't!

"Will you two shut up!" Magnolia ordered. "I don't know what this is, but it's extremely dangerous to everyone. Now isn't the time to argue over saving this woman because I don't know if there is a way to save her or if anything remains inside!"

Standing up straight, Magnolia thrust out her right arm, hand open. A bright yellow light flashed in her palm, extending into a long shaft. Another flash, and the light solidified into a golden short spear, gleaming in the light of the flat. A long, wide blade at the end shined ominously. Magnolia pointed it at Mrs. Simpson's face. Melody shrieked, but Magnolia only kept the spear pointed.

"What are you?" Magnolia asked. "Tell me everything, or I feed Lance-Soleil your blood."

Mrs. Simpson stared at the spear blade with frightened eyes. Her eyes moved to Magnolia's, but Danni felt like she was looking directly at her.

"We are 'Huoguilei'," Mrs. Simpson croaked out, her voice deeper and rasping. "The vessels of the Guiruchong. The Guiruchong came to Earth long ago, but the ones in this region were defeated and sealed away by the Mahìngan Tribe before they could spread."

Danni was astonished. The Mahìngan Tribe fought off alien worms in the past? If they repelled an alien invasion then how did the white settlers overcome them? It didn't make any sense to her.

"Did the Mahìngan Tribe find a way to save the Huoguilei?" Magnolia asked.

Mrs. Simpson's mouth twisted into an awful grin. "No," she said. "You can never take the Guiruchong out of us. And every day more people join our ranks."

Magnolia's eyes narrowed. "Kill her, Melody."

Melody, crying, shook her head. "I can't! I can't kill anyone!"

"Then stand aside."

Melody rose. Mrs. Simpson stayed on the floor, laughing gutturally. She tilted her head to meet Magnolia and Danni's eyes and grinned widely.

"Join us," the older woman hissed.

Magnolia thrust her spear into Mrs. Simpson's back, severing her spine and piercing her heart in one powerful blow. The sounds of metal stabbing flesh and breaking bone sickened Danni. The blood was so much brighter than on television, and it spurted from the precise wound after Magnolia withdrew her bloodied spear.

"I'm sorry," Magnolia whispered morosely. "Both of you."

Trapped in her own body, Danni wanted to vomit but couldn't. She was forced to kill two people and was helpless to prevent it. As the blood drained the aura drained too.

"Why were the Gemmes Terrestres given to Danni Flores?" Magnolia asked crossly. "They were supposed to be given to a warrior with a disciplined mind and body!"

"Forgive me, Magnolia!' the Dryas piped up from her spot on the second floor. "Your intended host was killed, and I didn't have time to become your host! This girl took them and…well…"

Magnolia frowned. "Really? Damn it. Who killed her?"

"It was a Nekomata," the green girl said. "She seemed to want the Gemmes Terrestres. Ruby Andrews, your intended host, died holding her off while I escaped with the Gemmes Terrestres."

"That sucks," Magnolia sighed. "So, what's your name?"

"Fraxi Tonelico." The girl bowed respectfully. "Please accept me as a servant, Champion of Earth."

"Sure," Magnolia said. "We gotta stick together, eh?"

A powerful hand grabbed Magnolia's right shoulder and spun her around. Danni and Magnolia found themselves faced with a very angry Melody.

"Who are you and what's going on here!" Melody demanded, her voice shaking and angered tears running down her face. "Give Danni back, whoever you are!"

Magnolia sighed impatiently and raised her hands in a warding gesture. "OK, I owe everyone and explanation. I'm Magnolia, the champion warrior of the Earth goddess Déméter. My spirit was sealed into the Gemmes Terrestres so that anyone who wears them and agrees to host me becomes my new body."

"Bullshit!" Melody yelled. "Danni never agreed to anything like that!"

"If she didn't, then why am I here?" Magnolia asked smugly.

Danni raged helplessly, feeling deceived. She had agreed to what Déméter said in the dream, but it was only supposed to be a dream. If she knew it would be real she never would have agreed.

Magnolia glanced at the fallen form of Lita. Danni hoped she was all right after Mrs. Simpson choked her. "Get everyone in here," Magnolia said. She approached Lita and laid her hands on her back, nodding in satisfaction.

"She fine," she said.

Melody let out a sigh of relief. "That's good. I'll get Mama in here."

Her face grew dark, scowling at Magnolia. "And we want to hear the truth!"

"Yes, we'll tell you!" Fraxi agreed.

"Hell, I need some explanation," Magnolia griped. "I wanna know why I'm here at all. Danni's gonna have to help me with that one."

Melody opened the front door, and a timid Dr. Eisenberg peeked in. "Is it safe?" she asked.

"Yes," Melody answered sadly. "But Mrs. Simpson and the janitor! They're…they're…!"

Melody choked and hugged her mother, weeping. Dr. Eisenberg held her giant daughter tightly and shed a few tears herself.

"I called the police," Dr. Eisenberg stammered out. "They should be here soon."

"Oh no!" Fraxi fretted. "Please, not the police! If they see me they'll know something abnormal's happening!"

"Isn't that what we want them to know!" Melody demanded.

Fraxi flailed her arms in a panic. "I'm not fully human! Fae like me hide from humans! We're very worried about what human society will react if they find out about us! This isn't a human problem but a Fae problem!"

Dr. Eisenberg stepped away from Melody and looked down at Fraxi. "It is a human problem when our friend and neighbor has died because of it," she said sternly.

Yeah! Danni mentally agreed. You tell them, Dr. Eisenberg! Don't underestimate us humans!

"I agree," Magnolia said, surprising Danni. "Fraxi, don't antagonize them. From Danni's memories, you came to her and that Lita woman's aid first. You got them involved, so it's their problem too."

Fraxi bowed her head. "I apologize. Now—"

A heavy knock came at the door. "Police!" a deep male voice called.

Without a word, Melody took Fraxi's hand and ushered her away to her room. Magnolia smiled. "Time for me to go too," she said, and snapped her fingers. In a quick pink flash, Danni found herself back to normal, dizzy but normal.

Act normal, OK? Magnolia's voice said in her mind. I'm gonna sleep now. If you need me, you know what to say.

Dr. Eisenberg opened the door, revealing a tall, broad-shouldered and stern-faced black man, with a shorter, slim blonde white woman at his side. They flashed badges. "Detectives Aaron Jacobs and Cheryl Castellini," the man said. "We were called about an assault."

Noland was just getting ready to settle down with a lovely playing session of Love in Moonlight in the original Japanese on his computer when his mobile phone rang. With an annoyed sigh he turned the sound down and answered. "Speaking," he said, hiding his irritation.

"Graf-sama," came the voice of Haruboshi. Her breathing was labored and sounded pained. "The Juakali Emeralds! I…"

"You didn't acquire them, did you," Noland stated flatly. The apologetic tone of her voice told him that much. "Someone stole them from you, judging by the pain in your voice."

"Yeah," she answered sheepishly. "A Werewolf was trying to steal them before I could. I killed her, but a Dryas with her made off with them. I don't know where she is now, but she's part of les Gardienes Émeraudes. I heard her say 'Déméter-sama'!"

Déméter? Noland was intrigued. "I see. Thank you Haruboshi. That information might be even more important than actually having the emeralds here. If les Gardienes Émeraudes are interested then they might be active in Atlas City. FuSec is going to be have fun searching for them."

Danni felt numb as she watched the bodies of the janitor and Mrs. Simpson being carted off. How did it come to that? Why did it have to be them? If that worm hadn't come in then those two would still be alive, right?

"Thank you for you answers," Castellini said to them all. "We hope we can find out what happened here."

"We do too," Dr. Eisenberg said. "Good night, detectives."

The detectives nodded sadly at her. "Good night," they said, and closed the door behind them.

"Where's Fraxi?" Dr. Eisenberg asked.

Lita, rubbing her neck, nodded in agreement. "Yeah, I wanna know what's going on!"

Melody poked her head out from behind her door. "She went out the window and climbed down somehow. It was amazing actually. I have no idea how she did it."

"Where was she going?" Lita asked.

"She said something about a 'Ruby Andrews'. She was in a real hurry to get away."

Melody opened her door to let everyone in, and sat on her bed. Danni still couldn't get used to her best friend's huge muscles and silver hair. She wondered how strong she really was after the transformation. She looked like she could bench-press a lorry.

Something long and green suddenly swung through the window, startling everyone.

"Another worm?" Danni asked.

"No," Melody said, getting up to look closer. "It's a…vine?"

Danni and Dr. Eisenberg joined her to crowd around the strange thing. Sure enough, it was a thick vine, like the kind jungle heroes swung from in old movies. Fraxi suddenly climbed over the windowsill and tumbled into the room, clutching something to her chest. She was panting heavily, but she smiled in triumph. The vine retracted into her body, snaking into her sleeve.

"I got it!" she wheezed. "This will be a great help!"

"What is it?" Danni asked.

Fraxi held out a battered pocket book. Danni opened it and found a collection of unfamiliar names with email addresses and mobile phone numbers.

"Les Gardienes Émeraudes," Fraxi said. "We're working to save Earth from environmental destruction and alien threats. This is a list of members in Atlas City. The goddess Lady Déméter has decreed a major emergency, so we're really getting active."

"Environmental destruction?" Melody and Danni asked at once. Danni's interest was certainly piqued.

"Yes!" Fraxi moved to a sitting position and nodded. "Les Gardienes Émeraudes want to restore the power of nature to Earth. Humans have been out of control, so we want to fix the environment in a way that humans can easily adjust."

"That's great," Melody admitted. "I support that idea, but I'm…unsure about joining a religious group. No offense, but I think something more secular might get you more recruits."

"We can't recruit just anyone," Fraxi said. "We're a secret society, made up mostly of Fae."

"You're not eco-terrorists, are you?" Lita asked sharply. "We don't need people like that."

"I prefer to think of it as 'Earth liberation'," Fraxi said, annoyed. "Sometimes violent action's necessary. That's why we have a champion, Magnolia. We don't like to hurt people, but we have to defend ourselves."

"So is this a religious group?" Dr. Eisenberg asked.

"We worship Earth and follow Earth's goddess," Fraxi answered. "It's where our power comes from."

"So I met a goddess in my dream," Danni said skeptically. "If she's a real goddess then couldn't she snap her fingers and make all toxic waste vanish?"

"Don't be ridiculous!" Fraxi snapped. "Lady Déméter is only a goddess; she isn't omnipotent! No one is! More powerful than you or I, but she can't do anything she wants."

Danni frowned, puzzled by Fraxi's claim. Déméter was a goddess but not all-powerful? Wasn't that the entire point of being a deity? Giving people an all-powerful protector to believe was watching over you and explain how the natural world worked?

Fraxi looked to the pocket book. "Anyway, we need to get the help of other members. I have my own list, but I needed to make sure that the Different Seasons didn't find this. Their employers might be after us."

"The Different Seasons?" Dr. Eisenberg asked.

"A group of assassins," Fraxi answered. "We narrowly escaped one of them."

"Did that woman really have cat ears?" Lita asked.

"Yes she did," Fraxi said. "She's a Nekomata. Anyway, in Atlas City our operations are against a company called Tofuture, Inc."

"What!" Dr. Eisenberg stomped over to the plant girl, glaring dangerously. "I work at Tofuture, Inc! It's one of the greenest, most environmentally-friend corporations in the world! Your little eco-terrorist Gaia cult should be thanking us for doing so much to help the environment!"

"Mama!" Melody covered her mouth guiltily.

"I know you are," Fraxi said calmly. "We thought Tofuture, Inc. was the best corporation in the world for its environmental polices and green technologies. The only weird thing was that Noland Clifford is a graf in the Order of the Dragon. But we found about its disregard for human welfare in developing countries and the cover-ups. Digging deeper, we found some extremely disturbing stories of human experimentation. Our people then were attacked by FuSec, Tofuture, Inc.'s security force. During the attack it was claimed some of the FuSec soldiers exhibited superhuman abilities and massive deformities."

Fraxi looked away. "What I read about those soldiers was very similar to the attackers from earlier."

Danni's mind spun. What she was hearing was so insane that it was compelling. Was it any more insane than the previous events though? Danni wasn't sure.

Rubbing her face, Dr. Eisenberg sighed deeply. "So my company is producing invisible parasites that turn people into mutant super soldiers and the president is a graf in the Order of the Dragon. Whatever that means."

"The Order of the Dragon is a secret society of Fae," Fraxi explained. "A 'graf' is a member chosen to control a city. Clifford is unique in that he is human, not Fae. The Order of the Dragon works to hide the existence of Fae from humans, and seeks to rule human society from the shadows. At best humans are useful pawns and at worst food to them! Les Gardienes Émeraudes is opposed to them because we want humans and Fae to live together again."

Fraxi turned to Danni. She knew what was coming next, and didn't like the idea at all. "With the power of Magnolia, we must ask you to aid us in our fight," the Dryas said humbly. "All of you. Please, the human race may depend on this!"

"I refuse to believe this nonsense!" Dr. Eisenberg said, crossing her arms beneath her chest. "We're not taking part in these inane conspiracy theories."

"Mama…" Melody said quietly. "Please tell me there's a good reason your formula did this to me." She indicated her titanic frame. "I don't wanna believe what Fraxi's saying, but I don't think it was a total accident Tiranno made my muscles grow. Did you know it would have that effect?"

Dr. Eisenberg fell silent and looked away. "No," she admitted. "That property must've already been present and I overlooked it. I thought it was only to restore damaged tissue."

Fraxi nodded. "There, already something suspicious came up. We need more evidence though. I think we need to see what they're up to."

"You want me to get you in," Dr. Eisenberg said flatly.

"Yes," Fraxi admitted. "We need someone with inside access. What kind of security clearance do you have at Tofuture?"

Sighing, Dr. Eisenberg drew a white card from her coat. "I'm cleared to lowest level a full-time researcher can have," she said. "Minor projects mostly, although I was sure to rise in rank very soon. I was working with a researcher from a higher clearance to get the Tiranno samples. I can help you in tomorrow."

Fraxi smiled. Thank you so much! It pains me to do this to a company I thought was helping Earth, but we have to be sure if Tofuture is doing wrong."

Dr. Eisenberg looked at Danni and Melody. "Do you two really believe this?"

"I don't know, Mama," Melody answered. "That's why I'm gonna have to see for myself."

"Me too," Danni said. "I already had a dream about Déméter, and she warned me of something terrible. This might be the right direction to see if she's right or not."

"I don't like the idea of either of you putting yourselves in danger like this," Lita said. "But…I was kinda doing similar things at your age."

"Go to sleep you two," Dr. Eisenberg ordered. "We need to be rested for tomorrow."

"Good night," the girls said.

Lita, Dr. Eisenberg, and Fraxi all left. Danni sat silently with Melody. The sound of their breathing felt strangely loud in the quiet room. Danni couldn't take it after a while, and finally rose.

"Don't go," Melody whimpered.

"Eh?" Danni moved up to Melody.

"Don't go," Melody repeated. She looked at Danni, her silver eyes full of innocent fear. "Danni, I'm scared."

Danni smiled. "I'm scared too. My body's not totally my own any more."

"At least you can hide it," Melody said. She looked at her huge arms and her jutting, spherical breasts. The Softicel clung tightly all over, and her prominent nipples were easily discernable through it. "What am I gonna do about this? I can't go out any more!"

Danni swallowed nervously. She wasn't sure about all the muscles, but the breasts were simply amazing. The more she looked at her, the better the whole picture became. At first she had been shocked at the total transformation Melody had undergone, but looking at her some more…

"I think you're beautiful, Melody." Danni took her friend's hand into her own and squeezed tightly.

Melody looked surprised, then skeptical. "You do? Prove it."

Heart pounding, Danni knew what she could do. Without thinking, she took Melody's chin and pressed her lips to her own. Melody's lips were soft and warm, innocent and virginal. Danni quivered slightly, a powerful heart building in her loins. Was she really enjoying kissing her best friend?

I wanted this, she realized. This is what I've wanted!

Melody suddenly pulled away, her expression shocked. She stared at Danni. Danni waited an agonizing six seconds, waiting for Melody to show her anger or disgust.

"I'm sorry, I—"

"Kiss me again, Danni."

Without another word, Danni moved in again, presenting another kiss. It lasted longer, the kiss heavier than before. Danni hardly believed what was happening! It was ethereal, dreamlike. A number of nocturnal fantasies returned to her where she kissed her friend passionately, but Danni had always been afraid and embarrassed by them.

Melody broke away again and fixed Danni with a serious look. "Turn out the lights, my prince, and kiss me some more."

My prince? Melody hadn't called her than since they were 10 and puberty hadn't filled Danni out to her current proportions. Danni had looked more like a boy back then, and Melody would play a princess with Danni as her dashing prince.

She hastily turned off the lights and returned to the bed, hungrily going for Melody's lips. Melody slowly lay down on her back, Danni on top of her. Danni's marveled at the firmness of Melody's massive chest, squishing against her much softer pair. Stiff nipples poked into Danni, and Danni couldn't restrain herself any further. Her hands roamed over the fantastic new body, hesitantly at first, then groping with gusto, caressing bulging muscle and sinew, and cupping the ample swell of breasts. Melody groaned with sexual hunger, and Danni redoubled her efforts, her right hand rubbing one giant breast. Her other hand sought out Melody's hand, tracing up her arm and finally clasping around the powerful hand. Incredibly, Melody's nipples seemed to grow harder. Danni moaned; she had to do more.

She shifted positions, massaging the broad shoulders, looking deep into Melody's beautiful silver eyes. She kissed at Melody's ears and neck, working her way down to the breasts. Her hands slid along her back, coming to rest on the spectacularly well-developed glutes. Danni envied how firm and large Melody's backside had become! She started kissing the enormous breasts before enveloping the right nipple in her mouth. Melody let out a loud gasp.

"Oh my god! I'm gonna…!"

Danni sucked hard on the fabric-covered nipple. Her right hand flashed down to Melody's crotch, running clumsily over it until she felt a small bump through the Softicel. She ran her finger over it, and Melody cried out again.

"Danni! Danni!" Melody shivered beneath Danni, throwing her head back, her mouth an O of intensity. The knowledge that she brought Melody to orgasm nearly made Danni come too.

Melody lay still for a moment, then rose, gently pulling Danni off her. Danni spotted the bump she touched, and realized with shock that it was Melody's clitoris. It was sheathed in the blue Softicel. Even Melody's swollen labia were visible.

"Shit, Melody! Your clit's huge now!"

Melody blushed deeply. "I'd better find something to cover that up," she said. This outfit's too revealing as it is now."

Danni wanted to kiss the clitoris, but her eyes were drawn towards the thick, mighty arms. "Could you flex for me?" she asked hopefully.

Shyly, Melody began to flex, her biceps swelling larger. Danni watched, astonished, as they rose to be level with Melody's ears. Some think veins appeared from the strain. Danni immediately began to lavish kisses on the thick biceps, running her hands all over the arms.

"This is so cool," she breathed. "You're so big and strong now. I wanna see how strong you are, see you lift cars and stuff!"

"Danni," Melody whispered. "Can I please see you…erm, topless? You know, take your clothes off?"

Danni grinned, loving how cutely awkward her friend sounded. "Sure baby. You just had to ask."

Danni left the bed and slowly slipped her shirt over her head, enjoying the look of anticipation on her friend's face. She felt so confidant and admired. With painful nonchalance, Danni undid her bra and left it drop to the floor, her ample young breasts bouncing free. Melody watched, entranced, as Danni came back to the bed, cupping her own breasts. Melody reached out and began to caress the fleshy fullness, a look of adoration on her pretty face.

"Your boobs are so big," she giggled. "I always admired them."

"They're nothing compared to these," Danni purred, giving a playful slap to Melody's own bosom.

The two girls sat there, fondling each other's breasts, Melody soon moving in to suck and lick Danni's dark nipples. Danni mewled at the feeling of Melody's hot mouth latching onto her. She grabbed Melody's hand and guided it to her crotch, allowing Melody's fingers to trace out her burning sex. Danni groaned as she achieved rapid orgasm, her hips thrusting as the electric buzz spread through her form.

Panting and sweating in spite of the cold September night, Danni fell on her back. Melody knelt and licked Danni's neck. "I like it when you sweat," she said. "I love it when you'd play a hard game of basketball and you'd get all sweaty. You smelled so alive and strong."

"Really? Well I want a shower now."

"Me too. Let's shower together."

Danni grinned. "Sure."

After a quick, warm shower and putting their clothes in the wash, both girls fell asleep together in each other's arms.

Danni found herself in the lush green paradise of Déméter's land again. Danni shrugged, and admired the scenery.

"Hey," a familiar voice called from behind.

Danni turned around. Leaning casually against a particularly large and majestic tree was Magnolia. Danni looked her over, astonished by just how huge Magnolia's breasts were, around the size of basketballs, yet she didn't look at all as strong as Melody did. Magnolia had lean, athletic arms and exquisitely long, toned legs. Her waist curved inward, but her hips and backside were very wide, giving her an exaggerated hourglass figure. Her pink hair, lips, and eyes lent her a surreal beauty, especially coupled with skin darker than Danni's. She looked like a bizarre fantasy African princess.

"Hello," Danni said coldly. Beautiful or not, she didn't at all appreciate having to share a body with the strange warrior. She got her into the whole mess anyway.

"Hey, I just wanted to say I'm sorry for all this," Magnolia said. She didn't sound especially sorry. In fact, her posture suggested a lot of arrogance. She regarded Danni with bored, half-lidded eyes.

"OK," Danni answered simply.

Magnolia frowned and put her hands on her hips. "Look, I don't like this either, but we gotta get used to this. I was supposed to have a host who trained for years physically and mentally to accept me. Instead I get you. I'm pissed off, but I can't do anything about it, so I can't complain."

"Who are you anyway?" Danni asked. "What are you?"

Magnolia sighed deeply, a look of sadness flickering briefly across her perfect features. "I was once a queen of the Madodo Kingdom, long ago in East Africa."

"So you are African," Danni said. "You look and sound kinda…modern though."

"No shit," Magnolia grumbled. "I picked it up from you. As for my looks, I didn't always look like this. That's Déméter's doing, to make me stand out. And 'Magnolia' isn't my real name. I don't remember what it used to be."

"So why are you doing this?" Danni asked.

A bird cawed overhead. Both girls looked up to see a bright red bird the size of an eagle slowly flap through the sky. "It's my punishment," Magnolia said.

"Punishment?" Danni looked from the bird to Magnolia.

"Yeah; I did something unforgivable. This is my punishment: Forced to be savior of the world forever with all the elements of the Multiverse, my only thanks being sealed back into the Gemmes Terrestres when I'm not needed any more."

She turned back to Danni and smiled bitterly. "How I love Déméter. How I hate Déméter. But fuck, I'm great at what I do. I'm the greatest hero Earth will ever have, and you'll get the credit this time."

Danni had to admit, that sounded good. Getting the credit for saving the world?

Magnolia smiled more sincerely and put a hand on Danni's shoulder. "Please, just let me live through you a little. I don't get this opportunity very often; only when Déméter thinks I'm needed."

Danni sighed. Magnolia was in a much worse position than she had imagined. It would be selfish to continue fighting with her.

"OK, fine. I'll let you do what you want from time to time," she said. "But we gotta save the world too."

Magnolia grinned, her teeth dazzlingly white. "Yeah, of course! I can't fuck this up. I got a reputation to uphold!"

Danni grabbed her hand. "Deal!"

Nodding, Magnolia kept up her grin. "I'm glad we understand each other!"

Holding Magnolia's hand, something occurred to Danni, something she absolutely had to ask. "Hey, Magnolia, one more thing: I've always thought that there's no such thing as Deities..."

"Yeah, wrong about that one," Magnolia laughed. "There's Deities all over the Multiverse!"

"...so what about God?" Danni asked. "Is he real?"

Magnolia gave her a look of blank puzzlement.

"The Abrahamic God?" Danni clarified.

Magnolia shrugged simply. "I don't know."

Danni stared at her. "What do you mean by that?"

"I don't know," Magnolia repeated. "I know what you're talking about—I absorbed the knowledge I need from your memories, and my memories will bleed into yours. I know you don't believe any religion is true, but especially not the dominant one in this nation. The problem is, that religion wasn't around when my last host body died; it sprung up after my last death. I really have no idea how true any religions are today."

Frustrated, Danni buried her face in her hands. She was sharing bodies with a mystical entity, and she wasn't closer to learning if there was God.

I'm just gonna keep going with "no God" for the time being.

"Hey? And that glowing around everyone."

Magnolia nodded. "That's their 'qi'," she said. "Lifeforce."

"Oh. Good to know."

The lobby of the Tofuture building was huge and grandiose, all white marble floors and silvery metal trim. Shiny obsidian covered every door and door frame. People in sharp suits poured in and out of the lobby. Even the dark-blue-suited security officers looked snappy and disciplined.

Danni looked around, impressed by the grandeur of the place. She scanned for the toilets. "Do you see them?" she whispered.

"No," Melody answered. Clad in a huge fur coat, the biggest sunglasses they could find, and a wide-brimmed sun hat, Melody looked like she could be Danni's guardian. The strange outfit reasonably disguised her muscular body, at least from afar.

Danni spotted a women's toilet in a corner. She nodded to Melody, and hurried over to the toilets. Danni quickly moved into the third stall and closed the door behind her. Looking up, there was an air duct right about her.

Magnolia, you better be telling the truth about being able to move through air.

"Transformation Magnolia."

Melody walked as casually as she could to the public lifts, hoping she didn't stand out too much. Pressing a button, she fidgeted as she waited for a lift. One eventually came, and with a soft ringing the door opened. She rushed in and closed the door before anyone else could. The lift normally only went to a few floors that visitors could access, but there was a slot for keycards to be inserted into by employees to access further levels. The laboratory levels from least secret to most secret were white, green, blue, yellow, and red. Mama had explained it all very carefully.

Melody reached into a pocket and retrieved her minihack. It was bulky and a bit fragile, having been thrown together from parts she had taken from various electronic devices years ago. Something all the computer and technology-savvy kids did was build their own minihacks to remotely hack into systems. Of course, the media was up in arms over the wave of evil kids who could delete birth records and deactivate bank security, not knowing it took a computer genius to do cause even minor trouble with a minihack.

Melody was a computer genius though, among other things.

She watched as the little L.C.D. screen rapidly read the lines of code belonging to the lift computers. She hoped that Tofuture had lazy programmers.

Magnolia blinked and looked at her sterile white surroundings. Humans had such weird notions of beauty. It all looked so bland.

She looked up at the grill in the ceiling. Too small to normally travel through, but no problem for her. Sofia had told Danni that any answers they were looking for would be in the lower laboratories. She would be traveling down as far as she could.

"Transformation Vent," she whispered. A little whirlwind blew up around her, and she felt light and airy. Her hair, eyes, and lips turned a misty gray. Her skimpy top and skirt melted into mist, reforming into a clinging thin pale gown. Large wings with gray feathers sprouted from her shoulders.

"En Forme Brume," she whispered. Instantly she dissolved into a thick silver mist, and flowed up into the air duct. All she had to do was let the fans guide her downward.

Hacking to reach white level: easy. Green and beyond were much harder. She decided she had to go with green and see what else happened. She wished they could have done the break-in at night, but Mama told her that security was much higher then.

The codes broken, the lift began to descend. Melody sighed, wondering what she was supposed to do next. She supposed she could handle any trouble she ran into being so strong, but she hoped it didn't come to that.

The lift hit green level…and continued going.

Melody gaped at the readout, and fear crawled up her spine. The lift moved past blue level too. She hit the stop button, but the lift ignored her commands. It continued beyond yellow level. Red level was the only place left.

Melody backed up against the wall, struggling to get her minihack to move the lift back up, but the code she was running into was far more complex than before.

What if they expected someone to hack the lift?

Melody tried not to think about it, but it was the only explanation: a trap for anyone trying to hack to lift would be sent straight to red level.

The lift suddenly stopped with a quiet lurch. There was a soft chime, and the doors slid soundlessly open. Impossibly, some kind of cave lay outside the door.

Melody stood very still, as though any movement would attract an angry predator. There was no sound at all aside from a low hum like some massive machine was active close by.

I can't be scared! Look how strong I am now! I should be able to take anyone on! Get a grip, Melody Eisenberg!

After three minutes of scolding and encouraging herself, Melody took a cautious step outside the lift. Her first assessment had been incorrect; it wasn't a cave but an underground temple. She marveled at the rising columns and vaulted ceilings. It was a cathedral really. Who would build such a thing though? Surely not a local American Indian tribe? It looked too European in style. But who would build an underground temple in the first place and why did the lift go it? What was so secret that such an amazing discovery would be hidden from the public?

There was a gurgling of water up ahead. The area was dimly lit, but Melody could see well enough. She ascended a flight of stairs and found herself at a round pool with a fountain at the center. Looking at the fountain, Melody was disgusted to see it was made to resemble huge toothed worm gurgling water. It was a four-sided pillar in the center, four of the worms slithering up it and looking in each of the cardinal directions.

I shouldn't judge by appearances, but that thing is just damn evil looking.

"Admiring my fountain?" a deep, sultry female voice asked behind her.

Melody let out a soft shriek, nearly jumping up in the air from shock. She whirled around to find a tall, dark-skinned woman in a black low-cut gown displaying prominent breasts. Her nails and lips were a deep crimson, almost blood red. Her midnight-black hair was tied into an elegantly long ponytail. She had equally black eyes. The women held a long black staff that ended in a jagged swirl pattern, like a stylized worm.

Melody kept an eye on the woman backing away from her slightly. "Who are you?" she asked, her voice quavering more than she would have liked. Melody cursed herself for not sounding at all heroic or confident.

Danni would handle this one easily…

The woman laughed, clearly amused by the attempted bravado. "I am Imalia Blackpeak, keeper of the Guiruchong for this esteemed corporation. Welcome to our holy ground."

Another freaky religious type…Melody thought. She worried about being able to reason with Blackpeak.

"What do you mean? What's going on here?"

Blackpeak strode forward. Melody slowly circled the pool, keeping her distance. "The Guiruchong were sent here by our Dark Mother long ago," she calmly explained. "My ancestors, the Kinebig Tribe, recognized the Guiruchong as a gift from the Dark Mother and embraced their power. They also possessed members of other tribes and turned them to our side. But our enemies, the Mahìngan Tribe, drove the Kinebig Tribe to near-extinction and sealed the Guiruchong down in this cave."

Blackpeak fixed an intense look on Melody. "My family continued our faith in secret, even after the Europeans tried to convert us to Christianity. We had to keep it alive; I was descended from a mighty shaman. It seemed like the Guiruchong were lost, until the Clifford family accidentally freed them! They had to kill much of their mining force when they fell under the sway of the Guiruchong, so the Cliffords came to my family for aid. We taught the white men about the Dark Mother, and they sheltered us, giving us time to control the Guiruchong. The Cliffords saved money by having willing slaves, so a most useful partnership was born…"

Melody felt sick. All that time she had admired Noland Clifford and his company, it was a front for a twisted cult and its deadly parasites. How much had her mother inadvertently supported their goals?

Blackpeak's eyes glittered wickedly. "We just love when clever little things drop by for a visit. We could use more like that, so any attempts to hack the lifts—"

"Sends them here," Melody finished. "I gathered that when I arrived."

Laughing, Blackpeak strode forward. "So, join us. Accept a higher Guiruchong and hold power over the lesser ones."

Memories of Mrs. Simpson and the janitor flashed through Melody's head. She squeezed her eyes shut for a second. When she opened them anger made her teeth clench.

It's your fault! she raged mentally. They're gone because of you, and Clifford, and…

With a primal bellow, Melody charged at the evil woman, eager to punch her, break her, hurt her. She couldn't allow someone like that to live.

Melody drew one powerful fist back and swung forward with all her might. Blackpeak thrust out a palm to intercept the blow. Melody struck the palm forcefully, the hit sending a tremor through Blackpeak and driving her backwards, but, incredibly, the woman seemed only mildly fazed. With a grunt, Blackpeak ground her heels into the floor and slowed herself down. Melody suddenly found her hand crushed in an impossibly strong grip.

"You're strong," Blackpeak breathed. "Strong and a hacker. You, my friend, are a true gem."

Her eyes suddenly shown with an icy blue glow. Grinning with utter malice, she thrust her palm into Melody's stomach. "Nüjiaoshi Bingdong!" she intoned. Melody screamed as freezing blue light flashed, and ice covered her arms and legs. She was rooted to the spot.

Blackpeak moved to the pool and slowly retrieved something that Melody couldn't see. Melody struggled, the ice cracking in several places. She didn't think she could escape in time though. Her rage was replaced by fear once more.

"Don't struggle," Blackpeak said. "Just accept this. You'll be glad you did."

"Coup de Vent!" a voice yelled. Blackpeak turned her head, and was suddenly blown off her feet and was thrown into a wall to the side.

Melody saw Magnolia floating gracefully in the air, clad in a misty gown so thin she might as well have been nude. Huge gray wings grew from her, making Magnolia look like an angel. "Looks like I got here just in time!" she said, a smirk on her face. "Come on girl! Use those muscles and bust outta there! I know you can do it! I'll handle the bitch in black over here!"

"Oh, right!" Melody focused on her strength, flexing her frozen muscles. With a roar, she shattered the ice and stepped free, shaking the coat, hat, and sunglasses off, dressed only in the freshly cleaned Softicel suit.

The lifts let out a chime again. Melody turned to see them all slide open, revealing a group of people in blue body armor and helmets pour into the temple. Among them was a teenage girl with wild pink hair and a form-fitted black dress. Melody would have called her cat-like ears weird, but Melody barely registered it at that point.

Magnolia came flying to Melody's side. "Shit," she said. "We've got a handful this time, Fenouil."


"Your name. I'm calling you Fenouil now," Magnolia said. "You know, a secret identity?"


"You're trapped now," Blackpeak said. Melody—no, Fenouil—turned to see her behind them. "Who are you girls anyway?"

"Yeah!" the catgirl yelled out. "Who are you and why did you break in?"

Magnolia smirked arrogantly. She seemed utterly without fear. "Who am I? I guess it's been a long time since I've had to save the world. It was during the Magic World War, the only time I ever fell in combat."

Blackpeak's triumphant expression was wiped away as though by a flash flood. "That's impossible," she said quietly.

"Yeah, stop lying!" the catgirl demanded. "You couldn't have been there!"

Magnolia's eyes glittered. "Ah, but I was! I am known as Magnolia!"

She threw her arms wide with supreme flourish.

"La Maîtresse les Éléments!"

Blackpeak actually stepped back. Fenouil was amazed to see what might have been fear in her soulless eyes.

"No," Blackpeak uttered. Then she swung her staff upward. "Kill her," she ordered. "Kill them both."

Fenouil squeaked when she saw all the soldiers raise their rifles. "I hope you know what you're doing!" she whispered.

"Of course I do!" Magnolia bragged.

Sofia typed at her computer, trying to keep up her appearance of hard work, but it was remarkably difficult. Her mind kept going back to the girls. She really had no idea what they would find, but hoped that it would turn out that Fraxi's story was nonsense. She just couldn't imagine that Tofuture was behind something so twisted—whatever it was Fraxi thought they were doing.

A hand fell on her shoulder. Sofia screamed and jumped to her feet, whirled around to see who touched her.

"Jumpy, aren't we?" a young male security officer laughed. "Sorry about that. Dr. Sofia Eisenberg, right? Please, come with me to the FuSec office."

Sofia swallowed nervously, unable to answer the officer despite his easy smile. Why did they send someone in person to fetch her and not summon her over the public address? Was it being kept quiet that she was being escorted?

"Come along now, Doctor."

Numb with terror, Sofia followed.

An alarm suddenly went off. The guards looked around in confusion, and Sofia heard gunshots echo up from a lower level..

"We're under attack!" one of the guar spoke in disbelief.

With their attention elsewhere, Sofia snuck off, dropping to her knees and crawled toward the stairs. She hoped that her daughter and Magnolia had nothing to do with the gunshots.

"Transformation Terre!"

Magnolia grinned sadistically as her body grew taller and bulkier, her muscles expanding and her hair growing longer and more wild. Her skin turned a very deep brown and a crystalline armor spread over her body.

"You punks can never withstand the power of earth itself!" she boasted, bullets bouncing off her rock-hard skin. She flexed dramatically, even if she still had no where near the bulk that Fenouil possessed. "Especially not underground!"

Slower than before, but armored and with far greater strength than earlier, Magnolia charged ahead, allowing the soldiers to fire on her. She wanted them to feel fear before she killed them. She had no problem killing them either; if they tried to kill her then she was permitted to try and kill them. Drawing a powerful fist, she drove it into the first soldier in reach. His bones cracked upon impact, and he went down firing into the air. Other soldiers got the idea, and began discarding their rifles. Instead, twisted claws erupted from gloves, freakish muscles tore through clothes, tentacles poured from mouths, and acid drooled from lips. Even the guy she had punched stood back up and tore his helmet off, revealing his face was covered with fleshy mounds, like bubbles under his skin. They growled and hissed, sounding more like animals.

"Shit, you guys are ugly," Magnolia said. The assortment before her was very diverse in their deformities, but all retained the basic human shape.

Fenouil winced in pain at the shots she had taken, but the fact she wasn't dead after being riddled with bullets was rather amazing to her. The catgirl and Blackpeak were sure to be more of a problem though.

A trio of the malformed guards rushed at her, each with long claws ready to dig into flesh. Fenouil clumsily backpedaled, swinging her arms as the more experienced fighters moved to surround her. Two expertly grabbed her arms, digging their claws deep into her thick muscles. The pain was excruciating. Fenouil screamed as though red-hot knifes had stabbed her. Through her pain, she saw the third guard charging at her, his claws to go into her chest. Without thinking, she wrenched the guard at her right arm forward, into the path of the charging guard. The unfortunate man screamed as his comrade mistakenly clawed him.

Swinging her left arm up, she shook the remaining guard off. With a kick she knocked the other two away with more force than she intended, flinging them into one of the pillars with a loud crack. Her body howled at her with its pain, but with every second the pain seemed to lessen. The slashes and holes in her arms appeared smaller than before.

Before Fenouil could reflect too much on her wounds, the guard she had shaken off came back. A swift kick took him down, and Fenouil winced at the sound of bones breaking. She felt terrible, but had no time to check if he had survived her attack. She really needed a way to regulate her vast strength.

With no small amount of horror, she witnessed Magnolia punching, kicking, and smashing the guards, a pleased grin on her face, like it was the most fun she had in a long time. Just what kind of person was Magnolia to take such pleasure in fighting and killing?

The catgirl suddenly swooped in with a flying kick to Fenouil's chest. Fenouil, more surprised than hurt, stumbled back. The catgirl was upon her, viciously clawing and dodging. Fenouil swiped and blocked, but the catgirl was everywhere; every time Fenouil punched her opponent had moved. Every time she blocked she got attacked from a different direction. The catgirl was stronger than she looked too. Her hits were very fast and brutal. Fenouil didn't know how she was still standing.

"Please, stop it!"

The catgirl laughed mockingly. "Surrender and join us! Haruboshi'll teach you how to really fight!"

"Hey alley cat! Catch!"

A corpse of a guard hurled into the catgirl, knocking her away. Magnolia was suddenly at Fenouil's side, bloody fists raised. "Took care of the vermin problem," she smirked. "Now let's finish these two monsters off!"

Blackpeak regarded them coldly. "You shall regret ever coming here, Magnolia," she uttered.

She thrust her grotesque staff forward. "Nüjiaoshi Chaobingdong!"With a sweeping gesture she released a huge blizzard of sharpened ice in a cone shape. Magnolia moved in front of Fenouil, taking the brunt of the attack. Even with her greater protection, Magnolia gave a pained scream, shocking Fenouil. Actual cuts appeared on her tough skin, and ice formed on her.

"Get outta here Fenouil!" Magnolia screamed over the icy attack. "You can't fight this!"

"I'm not leaving you!" Fenouil called back. Beyond terror, she suddenly ran out from behind Magnolia, ice stinging and slicing her skin. Lowering her shoulders and covering her face with her arms, she charged ahead. She didn't try to get out of the cone of ice; the catgirl would attack her as soon as she left Blackpeak's range. No, she had to attack Blackpeak from the front, where the catgirl was unlikely to try going.

It felt like pushing against a vast wind throwing knives at her. The cold was almost unbearable; if she stopped moving she knew she would freeze in place. She thought of her mother and Danni, the passion she experienced with her friend. She had to live for both of them. There was no way she was going to die and let them down.

"You can't possibly stand through my Nüjiaoshi Chaobingdong," Blackpeak sneered.

"Really?" Fenouil asked. Finding a burst of speed, she rushed forward and grabbed her staff. Blackpeak gasped, and her spell ended. With her other hand, Fenouil grabbed Blackpeak by her slender neck and clutched her tightly. Blood dripped from cuts all over and Fenouil's body screamed at her. The pain from growing her muscles felt almost second to the intense agony of her injuries. Fenouil gasped for breath. If she left down her guard for even a second she would collapse from exhaustion.

The catgirl squawked in protest. "Blackpeak-sama!"

"Let us walk free, or Blackpeak dies!" Fenouil ordered.

Blackpeak was astonishingly calm, given the situation. "You aren't a killer, girl," she said. "I saw it in your eyes."

"She isn't, but I am," Magnolia said, holding her spear to Blackpeak's neck. She grinned unsettlingly at the catgirl."Let us go now."

The catgirl quivered uncertainly.

"Call the lift, Haruboshi," Blackpeak said. "We can finish this later."

Silent but resentful, Haruboshi went back to the lifts and opened one.

Fenouil and Magnolia backed slowly into the lifts. Once they were inside, Fenouil pushed Blackpeak back to Haruboshi as gently as she could. The doors closed, and the lift was moving before Fenouil could see any more.

"Your wounds are closing," Magnolia observed. "That's excellent. Are you all right?"

"I feel ready to die…" Fenouil groaned. Her blood dripped to the floor. She struggled to keep standing, but the pain was lessening.

"You're not gonna die!" Magnolia insisted. "You're healing better than I can at this time. Hang in there! We're gonna make it out!"

Sofia winced at the screams and gunshots she heard. Inhuman growls drifted up to her too. She had to get out while she still could. She just had to work up her courage and go down the stairs.

A huge, hairy wolfman emerged from the stairs and locked eyes with her, lips curling back over massive fangs. Sofia nearly lost control of her bladder. Ridiculously, she focused on the wolfman's clothes, faded blue jeans and a white tank top, both stretched by the creature's massive muscles. It looked like a bodybuilder.

"Sofia Eisenberg?" it growled in a deep voice, sounded surprised.

"Yes?" she asked quavering.

"Fraxi sent us," it said. "This raid is for the benefit of your daughter."

"Ah…Oh…" Sofia said, struggling to connect everything."

"Kill it!" a female voice called. The wolfman snarled, and several guards appeared with pistols, firing at it. Sofia's screams were not enough to drown out the deafening boom of guns being fired. He roared and charged them, the bullets not bothering him at all.

Sofia watched numbly, wondering how her life had gotten so bizarre. A powerful arm wrapped around her waist, prompting another scream.

"Let's go!" another wolfman called. Someone else must have spotted the wolfman that had grabbed her though. Sofia heard more gunfire, and suddenly her chest exploded with pain. With a cry she passed out.

Magnolia stared at the warzone playing out in front of her. The lobby was filled with Tofuture security and Werewolves, battling mercilessly. Even with pistols and rifles, humans found it difficult to hurt Werewolves, one of the mightiest beings on Earth.

"Hey, this is a pretty good distraction!" she said to Fenouil. "Let's beat it!"

Fenouil had healed enough that she was moving more easily. Magnolia lead, ducking and weaving around counters. Soon they were out of the building. Magnolia knew that police would show up soon, and wondered why none already had.

A Werewolf burst out behind them, clutching a bloodied human. Fenouil shrieked in grief and pain. Magnolia realized it was Sofia the Werewolf was holding.

"I'm sorry," he said. "I was trying to get her out of there, but she was shot by someone aiming at me. I'm so sorry!"

"Get us somewhere safe!" Magnolia ordered. The Werewolf nodded and run off down into the alleys. Magnolia and Fenouil followed. As he ran he shrunk down and became a human man, slim and wiry with short brown hair.

They came to a warehouse in a poorer part of town. "We don't live her, but sometimes we meet in it," the Werewolf said.

He set Sofia on the floor. She was bleeding from her chest. Fenouil sobbed over her, and Magnolia gently moved her aside. She could see Sofia's faint qi struggling to keep her body alive. She didn't have long, but Magnolia knew she could save her.

"What happened?" Fenouil demanded. "What's going on?"

"Fraxi called us to distract Tofuture security for you," the Werewolf said. "She thought it would be easier to escape if we were attacking them. She owes us a lot for this stunt though. We're not gonna catch them off guard so easily next time."

Magnolia solemnly reverted back to her base form and slipped her top off, letting her huge breasts bounce free. Without a word, she knelt by the injured woman, squeezing her right breast. She moaned quietly as drops of milk formed from her fat nipple. With her other hand she raised Sofia's head and brought her nipple to Sofia's open mouth.

"What are you doing…?" Fenouil asked through her tears, bewildered and almost angry. Magnolia understood what she was doing looked weird and disrespectful, but she had to do it.

"I'm saving your hot mama," she answered bluntly. "Be quiet while I do this."

Milk trickled down Sofia's throat. Magnolia silently urged the lovely woman to accept it, for her body to begin healing before it gave up.

Sofia coughed, sputtered, and opened her eyes. She tried to move, but Magnolia held her in place. "Don't move; you gotta drink more to heal."

Sofia closed her eyes and suckled at Magnolia contentedly. Magnolia blushed, enjoying the feel of the older woman's lips at her nipple.

"Heh; you like that, don't you Sofia?" she chuckled. "You're gonna be all right!"

Something fell from Sofia's breast and bounced off the concrete floor with a metallic ring—the bullet that hit her.

Her front was covered in blood, but her wound had vanished.

Magnolia looked at Sofia's qi, noting its strength had returned. "OK, that's enough!" She gently pulled Sofia off, some milk dripping from her nipple. Sofia made cute protesting cry and blinked. She licked her lips and blushed. "I was drinking your…What's going on?"

Fenouil's tears returned, but were tears of joy that time. "Oh Mama!" She hugged her mother and held her protectively. "I thought I'd never see you again!" she wailed.

Fenouil turned to Magnolia, smiling. "Oh thank you so much, Magnolia! Thank you, thank you…"

Magnolia smiled back and nodded. "Representative of an earth and fertility goddess. I can fight, but I can heal too. I personally like my way of healing…"

The Werewolf nodded. "So what was going on down there?" he asked.

Magnolia shook her head. "It's pretty bad," she said. "You guys are gonna have to listen to this. Tofuture is far more twisted than we thought."

Noland sat at his desk, scowling. His viewing of Kamen Saber had been completely ruined by the news of the insane attack on his building.

"I knew this country is a crime-infested cesspit," he spoke to Megumi, "but for these people to march right into my little bastion of order? Unbelievable."

"Indeed, Clifford-sama," Megumi answered.

He leaned back and took a deep breath. "It's good that Natalie's leaving soon. She deserves so much better than America. It's going to be a long and hard journey to clean this place up. I wonder if even the Guiruchong will be enough."

"They are only the first step, Clifford-sama," Megumi said.

"Yes, indeed." He drummed his fingers on the desk. "In the meantime, we're going to need more than just security—we'll need our army. Everyone's more vicious these days."

His eyes moved to the window. "With the economy being what it is, we shouldn't have any trouble recruiting. An endless number of people. An endless supply of Huoguilei…"

"So this is the price I have to pay," Dr, Eisenberg sighed. "I go from a luxury suite and a job at a multinational corporation to an abandoned subway station."

"I think it's pretty cool here," Danni said. The place was huge and dark, but les Gardienes Émeraudes had managed to get electricity working and set up a functional base. Danni remembered how she wanted to play in the old subways when she was a kid, but her parents insisted to never go down there.

"We're sorry," Trevor—the Werewolf who had rescued Dr. Eisenberg—said. He was back to his Werewolf form, and Danni had to admit with his powerful muscles and lupine face he seemed oddly handsome. "We would've liked having you as our inside man, but since FuSec wanted to talk to you about something they probably suspected you of doing wrong."

"The Tiranno. That has to be it. They must've caught onto me." Dr. Eisenberg sat on a bench and sighed. "So it's better they think I'm dead. What am I to do here?"

"Your genius is appreciated," Trevor said. "We think you can do a lot of good from here. We own some buildings too, so you can move there to do work, but you'll need to hide here too."

"Saving the world from an abandoned subway station," she said. "I suppose we all must make sacrifices…"

"I'll show you a space for your new laboratory," Trevor said cheerfully. "Oh, Lita's here too…"

Danni watched them go, then sought out Melody's new room. It was bare and concrete, and her massive frame took up most of the bed. Her wounds had healed, but she was fast asleep. Danni smiled sadly, hardly believing the new life Melody and Dr. Eisenberg would be enduring. She wanted to stay a bit longer with her friend; it didn't feel right at all that the Eisenberg family had to lose their original lives.

Danni crawled next to Melody and kissed her check. "I love you, Melody," she whispered, and exhaustion took her too. Danni sunk into a deep sleep.

Magnolia opened her eyes and smirked. Once Danni fell asleep it was easy for her to make Danni's body say the magic words, and she would take over. She had some fun to have.

Walking through the subway area was easy for her, focusing on Sofia's qi. Her trip took her past other people, mostly Werewolves, but a few Vampires and regular humans were there too.

She found the woman in a larger room with several desks, a light bulb, and a few chemistry sets. Magnolia leaned in the corner, smiling disarmingly. "Hey," she said.

Sofia turned around, startled. "Oh, Magnolia," she said, becoming relived. "What are you doing here?"

"Just wanted to see how you were doing," Magnolia said. Smiling, she approached Sofia, watching her qi flow around her. The aura got more nervous in her presence.

"Thank you for saving me," Sofia said demurely, and smiled at her.

"No problem. You know how I did it, right?"

A tremble ran through Sofia, hidden to the average eye, but Magnolia picked it up immediately. "You made me drink your…milk."

Magnolia smiled cheekily. "You couldn't get enough of it! If I hadn't pried you off you'd still be sucking on my tit now."

"I needed it to save my life!" Sofia insisted, but her qi indicated a sudden rush of arousal.

"But you'd like more," Magnolia said, moving close to Sofia, their breasts almost pressed together. Magnolia's eyes poured over Sofia's figure. She was still wearing her white lab coat but over a new red dress she had taken from her apartment that clung to her curves well. Sofia's bosom, while not nearly as exaggerated as Magnolia's, were still excellent in their lush size. Her waist was trim and her hips flared nicely. Her long, curly dark brown hair had begun to go limp and had some gray, but Magnolia thought the gray added sophistication to her. Sofia also had a very pretty face, similar to her daughter's, with large, vulnerable brown eyes framed with wire frame glasses. She possessed an extremely potent combination of intelligence and innocence. Magnolia had to have her.

Sofia's eyes darted nervously from Magnolia's face to her chest. "I…I…"

Magnolia took Sofia's hand, fingers entwining with hers. "I'll give you all you want," she whispered. "I'd be glad to service to beautiful genius like you, Sofia."

"But…but you're Danni! Or her body…You're only 15!"

Magnolia laughed. "I'm using Danni's body, but clearly I've modified it. If you were my host you'd look just like this too. I'm much older than you too, so this isn't wrong at all."

Sofia struggled weakly. "But I'm not into women!" she protested.

"So you say," Magnolia smirked. "I can see your qi. You're all hot and bothered by me. You wanna suck my tits some more, guzzle that sweet, warm milk. Don't worry; it's really healthy, and it'll help you live longer."

She caressed Sofia's blushing cheek. "You need someone strong to watch and protect you. Let me be that person. I wanna treat you well, Sofia. You're beautiful but frustrated, confused from all the changes in your life. I can help make those changes easier, make this life more comfortable."

She caressed her breasts seductively. "And you can have these any time you want," Magnolia cooed.

Sofia sighed wistfully under Magnolia's touch. "Is Danni somewhere inside you?" she asked. "If she is—"

"She's asleep," Magnolia interjected. "I can take control when she goes to sleep. She won't know or see anything."

Sofia managed a smile. "Good. Thank you."

Magnolia grinned. It was time. She pulled her top up, exposing her breasts completely to Sofia. "They're all yours."

A look of intense lust passed over Sofia's features as she got on her knees to suck. Magnolia was impressed; Sofia seemed so gentle earlier, but maybe there was something more hungry and fierce inside her. She sat down to allow Sofia more ease.

Sofia's warm mouth enveloped Magnolia's right nipple, which immediately hardened. Magnolia moaned softly and put a hand on Sofia's head. "Oh, keep that up, sister. I'm gonna start milking really soon," she groaned.

Sofia's pretty mouth was sending an electric stimulation through her breast, signaling her milk glands to go into production. Magnolia groaned as her breasts heated up from the activity inside them, and they swelled slightly just as her engorged nipple began to spray milk into Sofia's mouth.

Sofia moaned blissfully as she drank down the milk. Magnolia sighed too, and watched as milk began to leak from her other nipple. Pushing that breast up, she licked milk off her breast, enjoying her creamy, sweet fluid. "So warm and thick!" she purred. "Fuck, no wonder you're such a milk junkie! This shit's brilliant!"

She squeezed her own breast, forcing milk into her mouth. It sprayed her face, but most reached her open mouth. "Oh yeah…"

She reached into her thong and began to finger her moist slit, marveling that it had been around twelve thousand years since she had any sexual experience. It was time to work that frustration off.

Sofia broke off her suckling, and laughed as a spurt of milk went on her face. She moved up again and began to lick the fat nipple. "This is what saved me!" she breathed. "Your milk healed me!"

"I'm a fertility spirit," Magnolia giggled. "It'd be wrong if I didn't have sweet, healing mother's milk to revive sexy, big-boobed genius single mothers like you."

"It's a wonderful miracle!" Sofia gasped. "I think I've finally found religion! Please, let me worship you!"

Worship me? Magnolia groaned, Sofia's words pushing her over the edge.

"Oh, fuck yeah! This is so hot! I'm gonna cum!"

Panting, Magnolia felt the pressure building her in chest. "Ah! Ah! Those in the first two rows are gonna get wet!"

Her orgasm exploded in her sex, shooting up through her body and slamming her in the breasts, triggering a massive letdown reflex. Twin fountains of milk gushed from over stimulated nipples, raining all over Sofia. Her body quivered, her huge breasts jiggling as she unloaded onto her follower and lover. Sofia raised her arms and had her mouth wide open to catch the milk falling on her. She wasn't just in sexual bliss but religious rapture.

"Be…reborn in my milk…" Magnolia groaned. She orgasm subsided, and her milk flow was reduced to gentle trickles. She plopped down beside the soaked Sofia, and was shocked to see the gray in her hair was gone. In fact, Sofia had a healthy, strong glow about her. She looked a little younger.

"Oh, Sofia," she murmured and began to lick her breasts clean. "Take a look in the mirror. Your gray's gone, although I kinda liked that. My milk made you younger! That's impossible for gray hair though; how can I restore color to that?"

Sofia laughed. "Because your milk is precious and holy," she said, and held Magnolia's head as she slurped milk that had pooled in Sofia's impressive cleavage. "So, that feels wonderful, my goddess."

Magnolia looked up, surprised. "Sofia, I'm not really a goddess. I just channel the power for one."

Sofia kissed her hard and heavy, their tongues meeting. When Sofia broke off she was still smiling. "I don't care. You're the most godlike thing I've ever seen. I want to be your priestess."

Magnolia smiled wickedly back, her ego swelling. She remembered when she was a queen of the Madodo Kingdom, and had demanded to be worshiped as divine. There had been a priestess she loved very much back then. She wanted Sofia more than ever.

"Work hard here, use your brain to help les Gardienes Émeraudes, but in secret you'll be my priestess and consort. I must serve Déméter, but perhaps if enough people worship me instead, I can be free from her at last!"

She hugged Sofia tightly. Yes, she could finally be free and return to being a queen. In exchange for saving the world from harm, she deserved to rule it.

Sorry Danni, but now that I have this body, I'm never gonna go back to being trapped in a pair of earrings again.

The Sun rose over the buildings of Atlas City, spreading a warm yellow glow in the early morning. Fenouil watched it sadly, knowing that as beautiful as the city looked, it was hiding something unspeakable. How many people were slaves to the Guiruchong? America had seen a rise in violence and crime since environmental damages rose and resources dwindled, but were Guiruchong encouraging that behavior too? How widespread were the Guiruchong. Very importantly to her, why would Tofuture being perpetuating the Guiruchong at all? It was at the forefront of the new "green" generation of corporations, looking to clean up the environment and find alternative energy sources.

"So much has changed since I last roamed the world," Magnolia said wistfully. "Magic's no where near as common, and humans have crowded everyone else out."

Fenouil nodded. "Yeah," she said. "We have to protect the world together now, I guess. I'm gonna be 'Fenouil' from now on."

Magnolia chuckled. "It suits you well. If we're gonna be a team, I say we call ourselves 'Steel Strawberry'."

"Eh? Why?"

"Because I'm sweet like a strawberry and you're hard like steel."


Fenouil smiled. It was going to be a hard mission, but if she had hope then others would too. They would find a way to save their plant and build a better future.


The end

Author's note: This story was originally supposed to be a single massive chapter, and when I couldn't accomplish that so many months ago, I felt uninterested in continuing. I didn't know what I wanted to do with this story after hastily making it a two-part feature rather than a one-part feature. So it languished since then, and it was not until Earth Day came and went that I felt a need to start again. I had written most of the characters being very environmentally conscious, even the villains, and when I decided that the year of most World of Humans story take place around 2020 and 2021, I thought that perhaps environmental conditions might have deteriorated somewhat.

Magnolia turned out very different from how I originally envisioned her. My first concept was a heroine with control over plants. At some point, I came to the idea that she instead controlled all of the elements in the An'uuto Mythos (earth, fire, water, wood, metal, wind, light, darkness, and void), and could shift between specialized forms. Her personality changed too; I had intended her first to just be Danni with superpowers and a buxom figure, but I liked the idea that she was another personality entirely. It became a rather strange variation on the story of Kazuki Takahashi's Yu-Gi-Oh! Then she became much more arrogant and ambitious than my previous heroines. I rather like how she turned out, being more of a scheming anti-heroine whose plans might make a true villain later on. For now she is solidly on the side of the heroes of the World of Humans though.

I hope you enjoyed this latest offering. Please keep up with the other stories like Muscle Cuties! and watch for more of Magnolia, Fenouil, Sofia, Fraxi, Imalia, and Noland. I shall see you again soon.