by: Grennd | Story In Progress | Last updated Jan 31, 2006

An avid fan fiction writer is offered her wildest fantasy, but it may not turn out as she expected. Based on a popular series of fantasy novels.

Chapter 1
Chapter One

Chapter Description: Katrina is approached by a self-proclaimed wizard, who offers her an impossible gift.

Katrina’s long, elegant fingers danced over the keyboard, stabbing with precision at the keys. They paused, then went back to work for another few seconds. After a moment of deliberation, she pressed the “CTRL” and “S” keys with a flourish, signifying the end of that document.

Kat (as she liked to be called) leaned back in her chair. Her long hands ran through her waist-length black hair. After a quick proofread, Kat pronounced herself satisfied and opened her browser to her favorite website: a fanfiction archive she had been submitting to for the past ten years.

Kat was a writer of fanfiction, one who wrote short or long stories based on existing franchises. She was no ordinary enthusiast, however. Kat was one of the most prolific writers her favorite archive had ever seen. For ten years, Kat had written a new story almost every week. Her routine was to start writing midday Sunday, and finish sometime Monday morning. She flipped over her clock, checking the time (she kept her clock face-down when writing, as she found herself depressed by its passage as it went past midnight). It read three in the morning.

Sighing slightly, Kat turned her attention back to the computer. After a few clicks, she had submitted her newest tale to her archive. It was one set in the universe Kat had written more fiction about than she had any other: the “Sid Orchid” series of books, in which a young man discovers that he is part of an underground magical society, and spends eight books in school for magical training, and another dozen embarking on other adventures. There were also several other novels chronicling the doings of other characters in that universe.

After turning off her computer, Kat stretched and headed to the bathroom. She disrobed, and began brushing her teeth. At twenty-five, Kat was in pretty good shape. She had a sort of curvy, voluptuous figure. Her years of inactivity had left her a bit flabbier than she would have liked, and her sun-starved lifestyle rendered her skin somewhat pale.

Lying in bed, Kat drifted off to sleep, thinking about her favorite fantasy: the one idea for a story she had never committed to text.

Returning home on Monday afternoon, Kat went right to her computer to check the comments for her most recent story. This was the highlight of her Monday evenings. She looked forward to reading the positive comments with satisfaction, the constructive with interest, and the negative with scorn. This story yielded the normal mixture of the three, but contained another.

“Good as always. Please contact me. I have an issue of some importance to discuss with you.”

The commenter left a variety of contact methods, but posted anonymously. Kat read this message over dubiously. She wondered why he tried to contact her through the comments box on one of her stories, rather than sending her an E-mail. Whatever this person’s reasons, Kat was curious. She fired off an E-mail to the mystery person’s given address.

The reply came in mere minutes. It read:

“I have been a long-time fan of your fanfiction work. I would like to reward you in what way I can. Send me an instant message, or call this number and I can work out the details with you.”

“Great,” Kat said aloud. “Another stalker.”

She sent another E-mail back, explaining that she was flattered, but wasn’t interested in anonymous gifts. She thought it best to end this person’s advances as quickly as possible. Another E-mail came back, as swift as the last.

“Let me make one thing clear. I’m not “stalking” you. If it was not necessary, I wouldn’t meet you physically. Please, contact me as I described earlier and I’ll tell you what I can offer you.”

At this point, Kat was quite convinced that her admirer was indeed crazy. She responded with another E-mail, again telling them that she was not interested. This time, it took about ten minutes for her to receive a reply. It read:

“I understand your reluctance to accept. However, you will, one day, receive my gift. This exchange has just been a formality, a gesture of politeness on my part. I know that you will be frightened after reading this, and may try to contact some kind of law enforcement agency. I ask you not to, for I mean you no harm. Also, it would be completely ineffective.

I am (although you won’t believe me now) what you might call a ?wizard’, similar to the characters in the Sid Orchid books you like. The gift I offer you is one of a supernatural nature, something you would be quite hard pressed to locate elsewhere. Again, I implore you to contact me so that I might give you the details.”

Kat read the last letter with a combination of fright and amusement. “This motherfucker’s unhinged!” she said aloud. Indeed, she did consider calling the police, but then figured this man (she figured it was male, as it referred to itself as a “wizard”; female magic users were called “witches” in the Sid Orchid books) was too deluded to be much of a threat. She decided to not respond, and instead went about her day.

Later in the evening, Kat did some more surfing around on the web, and checked her E-mail. Much to her nonsurprise, she received another correspondence from the mystery “wizard”.

“As you have not responded, I assume you do not believe me, as I anticipated. Well, I intend to make you believe me. At some time tomorrow, you will see or experience something quite spectacular. When you are ready to believe me, you know what to do.”

Kat didn’t think much of it, but she was glad because it insinuated that he would not contact her until the next day, at the earliest. Otherwise, she ignored it and did some more web browsing. In a few hours, she declared it time for bed.

“You wanted to see me, ma’am?”

“That’s right, Mr. Orchid. Have a seat.”

Kat Spalding sat straight-backed at a tall, oak chair. Across the desk Sid Orchid took a seat. He was a handsome young man of about nineteen, wearing the robes of an eighth-year student at the Vaevictus academy of witchcraft and wizardry. He had a wild mop of black hair, and a pair of round glasses over his bright blue eyes.

“Our gracious Headmaster has seen fit to give you personal lessons, correct?”

“Yes, Professor Spalding.”

“And how are those going for you?”

“Quite good, ma’am.”

Kat relaxed visibly in the chair. “You can refrain from calling me ?ma’am’ or ?professor’, Sid.

“Err, okay.”

“I asked for you to see me because our Headmaster has instructed me to give you private lessons as well.”

“Really? What about?”

Kat removed the pin from the bun of her hair, allowing the voluminous black sheets of it to cascade down her back. “Tell me, Sid, do you have a girlfriend?”

Tuesday’s morning was uneventful for Kat. Her mind freshly numbed from pages of copy, she returned home on her lunch break. Cooking a meal in her kitchen, she caught sight of a magnificent white bird swooping into her yard. She could not identify it, but it was both majestic and large. As she watched it, smoke began fuming from the creature’s beak, eyes, and under its wings. Within a few seconds it burst into flame. It flapped around for a few moments, not issuing any noise, then dissipated into ash quite suddenly. The ashes and embers were picked up by a sudden wind, flying in a thick cloud towards the sky. As Kat watched, they coalesced into the shape of a bird, and became white and substantial. The bird was remade, and it flew away into the sky.

Forgetting about the food in her microwave, Kat dashed to her computer to check her E-mail. Sure enough, another missive from the wizard was there.

“I believe you will have seen my little demonstration by now. If you are suitably convinced, please call or instant message me.”

The wizard’s contact information followed. Kat looked at the clock. She had a good thirty minutes until she had to be at work. Starting up her favored instant message program, she entered the man’s address into it. As she expected, he was listed as an online contact. Tentatively, she sent him a message.

“Are you the guy who has been E-mailing me?”

“Yes, although I would imagine you have many others mailing you at any given moment. I have to say, you were willing to believe me much faster than the others have been.”

“I don’t believe you quite yet,” she responded. “What others?” she added.

“I have been practicing my craft for quite some time. As you know, I’m something of a fan of the fanfiction scene. For extraordinarily great authors, I feel I must reward them. You’re not the first to have gained my attention.”

A pause followed, as Kat did not know what to say.

“You say you don’t believe me yet. That’s still understandable. How’s this? I explain my offer, and you can act as though you believe it, whether you do or do not. You don’t have anything to lose.”

“Well, what is your offer?”

“You have a fantasy, correct? With writers like you, it’s almost required. Wouldn’t you like to live in one of those universes?”

“Well, yes.”

“That is precisely what I offer you: the chance to live in one fantasy world of your choice.”

Kat’s pulse quickened. That, if true, would be near heaven for her. “How?”

“Have you ever heard of lucid dreaming?”

“Sort of.”

“Lucid dreaming is where you dream, but you are in full control of your actions and mind, and can literally do anything. This would be like a lucid dream, but it would last as long as you wanted.”

“Sounds... interesting.”

“You’re the least enthusiastic of all my clients, however.”

“Just call me skeptical.”

“Will you accept? There is only one thing that must be done that requires participation on your part.”

“And what is that?”

“You must meet me.”

Kat sighed, now knowing it to be a stalker as she originally thought. She cursed herself for being so gullible. “Why?”

“I need to see you in person for the incantation to work properly. Also, I need details on what you’d like from the fantasy, and prefer speaking to typing.”

“Sorry, no dice.”

“Surely you’re not in doubt of my powers again?”

“It sounds a little fishy to me, like a plan to... oh, I don’t know... rape me?”

“I assure you that my intentions are benign. And need I remind you of the phoenix illusion?”

“Sorry. I have to get back to work.”

She closed the instant messaging client and rushed downstairs. After grabbing her burnt and cold Hot Pocket, she rushed out the door. The rest of her day was as dull as ever, but her thoughts kept drifting to the self-proclaimed wizard. The thoughts kept with her until she went to sleep that night.

“A girlfriend? Well, uh, not right now.”

“But you’ve... had them, right?”

“Yes, of course.”

“And how... hmm, how do I put this? ?Far’ did you get with them?”

Sid looked angry and stood up. “Professor, what’s the point of this?”

Kat just smiled, and began unclasping her robes. Sid glared at her, uncertain what to do. Kat opened the front of her robes, revealing a lacy set of undergarments.

“Professor!” Sid said, looking away and stumbling back.

“Shh!” Kat intoned, climbing up on the desk on all fours, giving Sid an ample view of her cleavage. She reached a hand out to his chin, and wrapped her long fingers around his cheeks. Pulling his gaze to look at her breasts, she said: “This is what the Headmaster wants. I will teach you.”

Awaking early in the morning from her favorite dream, Kat cast off the sheets of her bed. Quickly getting dressed, she went to her computer. She sent an instant message to the wizard.

“Is the offer still open?”

“Yes, of course.”

“I’ll accept. Where and when do we meet?”

“I think today will be fine. How does your schedule look? We will meet at your house, if that is convenient.”

“Today? Where do you live?”

“Where I am at makes no difference.”

“We can’t meet at my house. I know a good caf?.”

“Why not? You’re afraid to give me that knowledge? I already know it.”

Kat was quite shocked to learn this, but thought he might be bluffing. “Fine, show up here at 6:00.”

“Consider it done.”

6:00 rolled around, and Kat was in her kitchen having tea. From her open window, a flow of pearly white mist seeped in. She looked at it in alarm, and glanced outside. There was quite a bit of it, but no one seemed to be complaining about it yet. Just then, Kat’s doorbell sounded. She jumped a bit, then went to answer it. Standing in the doorway was a tall man who looked to be in his late twenties. He had a goatee, black-framed glasses, and was wearing a long gray overcoat and a scarf that hung to his knees, even though it was quite warm out.

“You are Kat, I presume?”

Kat wanted to ask him how he knew her name, but decided against it. “Yes.”

He offered his hand, and she shook it. “I am the one who has been exchanging online correspondences with you, of course.” He strode past her and took a seat at a table. “Please sit. We haven’t much to discuss, but I’d like to keep this short, and I think you would too.”

Kat found it a bit audacious that she was being offered a seat at her own home, but she complied. “Was that smoke...?”

“Me? Yes. I didn’t get the transportation spell quite perfect, I’m afraid.” He pulled a notepad from the inside of his coat. “First off: which universe would you like to inhabit for the duration of this incantation?”

Kat, who was soundly convinced the man was a wizard now, answered. “Err, the Sid Orchid series.”

“Ah, I could have guessed that. Two of my other clients chose that, by the way. During which time period? The books cover a lot of ground, as I understand.”

“During Sid’s years at the school. Precisely, his last year.”

“Ah, I see.” He looked hard at her, and drew in a breath. It was like he was tasting her. “And I assume you’ll want to be placed in the school? My magic will choose the most appropriate place for you, but I need to know a general area.”

“Yes, the school.”

“Hmm, I believe that’s it.”

“That’s it?”

“Yes. I’m sure you were expecting me to require more details, but I don’t. And don’t ask for any special favors. I cannot change the universe from what is known, and I cannot change the personalities from how they appear in the books. Continuity is very important to me. Surely you can appreciate that. I’ve observed it hundreds of times in your fiction.”

“Yes, I understand. So, how will this work?”

He reached into his coat and removed a stone. “When I have finished the incantation, this stone will glow faintly. Simply squeeze it tightly, and the next time you sleep you will be transported to the universe I have created. No time will pass in this world except that you slept, so it will be quite like any dream. If you have any troubles while in the world, or wish to end it, simply say ?Liberate te ex inferis’.”

“You expect me to remember that?” Kat said, taking the stone.

“No, not really. The world is laced with clues to keep you remembering it, however.”

“Fair enough.”

“Now I must be off. Nice meeting you, and... enjoy.”

Kat just stood there dumbly, holding the rock and watching him stride out the door. A few moments after he left, she could not contain her joy, and went bouncing around the house in anticipation. Just think! Her greatest fantasy! To lure a real-life Sid Orchid to bed with her! The dream in her sleep would become something more real. She squeezed the stone, then noticed that it was not glowing yet. She sighed, and went upstairs to place it on her desk.

Sometime the next day, in the evening, the stone began glowing. Kat gripped it with excitement, but felt nothing. She figured some kind of sensation would accompany it, but there was none. She shrugged, and went about her business for another ten minutes before getting into bed and desperately trying to sleep.

After about an hour of fitful turnings in bed, she finally drifted into sleep. She awoke in a room quite different from her bedroom. It was the inside chambers of an ancient castle, decadent but warm. She recognized it immediately: it resembled the description of the Vaevictus castles from the books exactly.

Excitedly, Kat stood up, taking in her surroundings. It was then that she felt something was off. First off, the room did not particularly look like a teacher’s private quarters, what with all the bunked beds around. Second, everything seemed slightly... larger to her. Her quick mind put two and two together, and she looked down at herself.

It was a familiar sight, from about thirteen years ago. Her womanly twenty-five year old body had been replaced by a skinny twelve-year-old’s, draped in the robes of a second-year student at the school. Her breasts barely stood out as little bumps on the costume, and her hips were boyishly plain. She searched for a mirror, but found none. Remembering exactly what situation she was in, she felt a weight in one of her pockets, and pulled it out. It was a magic wand. Trying to remember an instance in the books where they conjured a mirror, she could remember none. However, the thought sprung into her mind, and muttered the correct phrase, bringing a silvery mirror into existence before her.

A panicked-looking little girl looked back at her. Her face was round, with a little button nose. She thought there must be some mistake; she tried to remember the phrase to call the wizard. Of course, she could not remember it. Instead of hunting down the “clues” he had left, she set off to explore. She thought, perhaps, that it was in the wrong time, and it was thirteen years behind when she had specified, and her regression was linked to that.

She explored the castle, not quite sure what time of day it was, if there were rules in the school against it, or if she had any existing relations in place in this world. She passed by sights she recognized from the book, and even people who matched the descriptions of certain characters.

Strangely, the halls seemed quite empty. Kat figured there must be some event going on, or perhaps it was late at night, even though she saw no one in the beds at her commons room. It was a few minutes until she stumbled onto the castle’s Great Hall, where the majority of the students were having dinner. She navigated herself to where the second-year students were gathered, keeping an eye out for Sid or any character that kept in regular contact with him. As she helped herself to a meal at the table, she spied other characters she recognized from the books.

The one known only as the Headmaster, an ancient but formidable wizard, sat at the table reserved for the school’s instructors. He had a great, flowing gray beard and head of hair, and wore a round pair of spectacles that seemed to be all black, but glittered as though an infinity of stars were contained within. Kat knew from reading the books that he was fated to perish; slain at the end of the last book in the main series by Sid himself, to further a complicated and far-reaching plot to destroy the dark wizard Aganamech.

A few tables across, Kat spotted Kyle Highground, a star player in the wizard sporting world. He looked to be in his fourth year. As it happened in the books, he was to become seriously injured in a sporting game, and discover powers of prophecy on his hospital bed, making him the first true oracle in history in a hundred years.

After finishing her meal and wandering out of the Great Hall, Kat saw a figure she recognized immediately. He was dressed in the unmistakable robes of the eighth-year, and he sported short blonde hair and a maniac gleam in his eye as he laughed. He was Anthony Dajus, Sid’s best friend throughout their school career. Kat knew, from reading the books set after their school years, that he would be the one to betray the most fundamental secret of the Vaevictus schools, leading to its collapse.

She followed him, knowing that Sid couldn’t be far. Although he was quite clearly in his eighth year, meaning Sid must be as well, Kat couldn’t believe it until she saw him. As she turned the corner, she got her wish. He stood, in the flesh, the object of her deepest sexual fantasy. Unfortunately for her, she was trapped in the body of a barely-pubescent, and he was a nearly full-grown man.

She cursed to herself and stormed the other way in the hall. Quite suddenly, she remembered the phrase. “Liberate te ex inferis.” she muttered to herself.

Suddenly, everything stopped and became quiet. The wizard appeared in front of her. “Is there a problem?”

“Yes, there’s a problem!” she shouted, wincing at her youthful voice. “I’m... I’m... I’m a student!”

“Well, yes. Wasn’t that what you wanted? My other two clients wished to be first year students, actually. I don’t know why you decided to be a second year student.”

“I didn’t want to be a student, I wanted to be a teacher! You said I’d be put in a position most suitable for me!”

“Well, the position of teacher isn’t particularly well-suited to a twelve-year-old, now is it?”

“I’m not twelve, I’m twenty-five.”

“No, not in this universe. If you’ll remember, Sid was born in the year 1973, making him nineteen in 1992, the year you specified. If you are twenty-five, you were born in the year 1980, which makes you twelve in this world.”

She thought about his math for a moment, and it did make sense to her. She realized her mistake was in thinking that the books were set in the years they were published, although they were set a little bit before that, which was revealed by subtle clues. “Alright, fair enough. I didn’t specify. I would like to be in this year, but as a teacher, in my twenty-five-year-old body.”

“I can’t do that.”

“What? Why not?”

“I told you, continuity is very important to me. You were born in 1980. You being twenty-five in this year would make absolutely no sense.”

“Well, make my date of birth in this world earlier.”

“I can’t do that either, even if I wanted to. It’s very hard to explain, even if you are a practitioner of my magic. Suffice to say, this world is more linked to our own than you might believe. It’s not just a figment of your imagination. Changing the date of your birth would require someone with much more power and skill than I.”

“So... I’m stuck like this?”

“No. I could set it in a later date, where you would have your normal body. However, it would still be later in this universe’s timeline, of course.”

Kat scowled. “My dream was to seduce Sid. How am I to do that with... this?” She gestured at her body.

He chuckled, the first outburst of emotion Kat had seen from him. “You should have chosen a more realistic dream. Listen, you can still make that dream come true. You still have your adult mind, and let me remind you that this is a world of magic. I recall one book where an aging tonic was used.”

Kat nodded. She did remember that. “Is there nothing else you can do for me?”

“No, unless you want to end this, or you wish to be in a different time. I told you, no special favors.”

“Alright,” she said with a sigh.

“You want I should bring you back to your own world?”

“No, I’ll stay here. For now.”

“As you wish.”

He vanished, the chatter started up again, and people moved again. Kat glanced back at Sid, the man seven years her senior. She was already concocting plans to get him in her bed, despite her current physical handicap. Perhaps an aging tonic, like the wizard suggested? Or some kind of time travel? Or maybe do it the normal way, after she had gained a few years? These ideas and more stormed through her mind, and she was sure she would reach her goal one day.

After all, it was her fantasy.



End Chapter 1


by: Grennd | Story In Progress | Last updated Jan 31, 2006


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