Early Bird Sneak Peek: “Smells Like Teen Spirit”!

Hi all! It’s time for another Early Bird Sneak Peek, where I share a glimpse at the story my lucky Early Bird patrons will be enjoying next Saturday thanks to their pledges at my Patreon page! Of course, if you’re not an Early Bird patron, you’ll still get a story next week–”Windfall”  has already been submitted to the EMCSA. But the Early Bird patrons will be getting “Smells Like Teen Spirit” (MC MF MD)!

Ophelia is going to a special event hosted by Sable Fire,  her favorite perfume company. It’s the unveiling of a very special new fragrance – ‘Void Blossom’. But it turns out that Erik Midnight, company founder and head designer of all of the company’s perfumes, has put something a little extra into Void Blossom, and it’s going to take all of Ophelia’s willpower and intelligence to avoid being a permanent guest of Sable Fire. Here’s a whiff:

Ophelia stepped inside, glancing at the bottles of perfume lining the shelves on the far wall. Each of them had a picture of an indigo rose, its petals opening endlessly outward from a center of starry darkness. ‘Void Blossom’, it said just below each rose. Her pulse quickening with anticipation, Ophelia crossed the room, picked up one of the bottles, and gave herself a little spritz.

Everything seemed to happen at once after that. The scent of the perfume hit her with an overwhelming rush, cloying and thick like the cheap deodorant Ophelia used when she was thirteen. The door locked behind her with a soft, menacing click, and when Ophelia spun to face it the room lurched sickeningly with her, leaving her unsteady on her feet for a moment. And the wall opened up to reveal a massive television behind a layer of safety glass, with none other than Erik Midnight himself displayed on the screen.

He looked just like his pictures, a slender man with sandalwood skin and a shaved head with ornate patterns drawn on it in gold makeup.. His eyes and lips were done in gold, too, as well as the highlights of his cheekbones. Even his immaculately-trimmed beard was dyed a lustrous golden color. “Hello, Ophelia,” he said, his lips quirking in a crooked smile. “It’s so nice to see you face to face at last, if not in person. You’re looking lovely today, although I hope not as lovely as you will soon.”

Hope you enjoy it!

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