I don’t know how old Jesse’s girl is. Twenty-three, maybe? It’s hard to tell with Asian girls, and even harder when there’s an ageless demon sharing her body.
It’s been three months since all Hell literally broke loose. Some shit about the Seven Seals opening and unleashing the apocalypse—I haven’t been a practicing Catholic since I was eight, and Jesse might still pray the rosary, but he sure as hell doesn’t adhere to the “no premarital sex” and “no contraception” rules. In any case, neither of us knows jack about what got the end of the world going. All we know is that it started with a magnitude 8.1 earthquake hitting Northridge and splitting the earth open, creating a pathway to the underworld that demons could come through.
It’s funny. I grew up with The Exorcist and The Conjuring, but now that it’s the actual apocalypse, things in LA are less White than in the movies—as usual. Less Catholic, too. I didn’t even know that there are Mormon exorcists, or Taoist ones. Turns out China has a whole-ass exorcism tradition going back hundreds and thousands of years. But all the exorcists set aside their religious differences when demon possession became too real of a problem to ignore.
Whatever the apocalypse movies like to say, it’s not good to be a lone wolf when your chances of survival are already low. Jesse and I have known each other since we were four; he’s as close to a brother as I have. So when LA became a clusterfuck, I headed out with him and his girl to find a smaller town where things might be less apeshit.
Jesse’s girl is named Karen. I think they met at the supermarket, something wholesome like that. She’s got a sweet smile. Thicker than your average Asian girl, nice handfuls of tits and ass. She’s modest, thoughtful, and kind, with a streak of dark humor through her. She’s been a good influence on Jesse. He’s got his own demons, there long before the underworld broke open. But he’s mellowed out in the year or so they’ve been together, and she’s clearly important enough to him that they hit the road together.
The demon inside Karen is named Bazoniuth. Fuck if I know whether demons have genders, but let’s just say Bazoniuth’s a “she.” Bazoniuth possessed Karen shortly after the earthquake. When she’s in control, Karen’s pupils go wide, turning her eyes black and eerie. Bazoniuth is wicked and all too willing to hurt people. When Bazoniuth first took over, it was like Karen disappeared, even though she was standing right in front of us. Bazoniuth would tell Jesse all this shit, break him down, and he’d get pissed and do something dumb. His knuckles are scarred over from punching walls. But then Karen surfaces again, and he can’t let go. There aren’t any exorcists on the road, though. We won’t be able to find one until after we’re settled down somewhere, whenever that might be.
Karen’s been able to come out more since when she was first possessed, though. She’ll still need an exorcist, but she’s tough as hell and clawing her way past Bazoniuth’s influence.
Which only makes Bazoniuth try harder to fuck things up the next time she’s in control.
She’s not just trying to break Jesse down anymore. She’s started holding my stare when Jesse’s back is turned, giving me a smile twisted with desire while Jesse’s not looking. She’s been stepping more into my space, her skirt hiking up her thighs as she sits beside me. She doesn’t say a word, but she doesn’t need to. I can’t hide the way the sound of my breathing changes when she’s beside me. I wonder if she can hear my heart beating faster the way I can, whether she can see my pulse throbbing through my wrist.
The first time we fuck, Jesse’s out hunting. He likes to do it solo, says it clears his mind, and I’m not going to complain—that’s how we’ve been getting most of our food. We’re squatting in an abandoned barn we spotted off the 15. It’s not romantic. A couple rafters are caving in. There’s sunlight filtering in and highlighting how dusty it is in here. But it’s shelter enough on the road, and we’ve got enough supplies in the car to last us a few nights if we need to stay here.
Jesse leaves at dawn. I’m still out cold. When I wake up, Bazoniuth is sitting beside my futon. She and Jesse sleep on a futon on the other side of the barn. After being cooped together in a car for hours, you spread out when you can. So I know she’s come here specifically to mess with me.
“What do you want?” I ask, my voice still rough with sleep.
“Nothing,” she says, her tone nonchalant. But her eyes are dark with desire, and there’s a sly tilt to her smile.
“Let’s chat, Ronnie,” she says, lingering a half-second too long on my name, as if she’s tasting it. “We never get to, just you and me.”
“We don’t have anything to chat about.”
“Yes we do.” She leans in close. I don’t have a chance to hide the shiver that runs through me, and she notices, her smile widening. “Do you ever feel lonely?”
It’s a loaded question, and Bazoniuth knows it. But even though I know where she’s going with this, I still pause to consider her question.
Of course I feel lonely. We upped and left everything we knew. I have no clue how my sister’s doing out in Virginia—communication’s been spotty. No one’s got time to maintain cell towers in the middle of all this. And, much as I love my parents, I’m thirty now and fed up with their bullshit. Trying to survive an apocalypse with them sounds like a disaster in itself. We can’t even take a road trip to San Diego from LA together without tearing each others’ throats out. At least we’re all somewhere in the Southwest, so texts come through occasionally on more local networks and I know they’re still alive.
Traveling with Jesse and his girl was the best option for me. For the most part, it works. Jesse has his thing with Karen, and I have my own friendship with him. I’m never really alone. My world shrank; it’s not empty.
But I’ll be the first to admit that it’s been frustrating not having a sexual outlet. Jacking off isn’t the same. My dick might be satisfied for a moment, but there’s something mentally that’s still wanting.
“Everyone feels lonely at some point,” I reply carefully.
“I’m not asking about ‘everyone,’” Bazoniuth says. She slides down to lie beside me, her breath hot against my ear. “I’m asking about you.”
The wide, round collar of her thin shirt dips low enough to reveal her collarbones and cleavage. She’s not wearing a bra. I look back up at the ceiling, then close my eyes and let out a long breath.
“Fuck,” I whisper.
I’ve wanted her for so long. Jesse and I might have shared childhoods, families, secrets, and friends, but I’ve never messed with his girls. Mostly because I haven’t had the balls to ask. Jesse’s down for unconventional things and has said before that he’d try an open relationship, but it’s not just Jesse’s girls I’m into.
I’m into him, too. I’ve thought about being on my knees between his thighs and having his cock in my mouth, even guiltily fantasized about the details while I’m sitting in the passenger seat as he’s driving. But I have no idea if he swings that way. We’ve got a good friendship going; I’m afraid in more ways than one to fuck it up. Plus, he’s more of your typical macho Mexican guy. I’m pretty sure he’s straight. But I guess that’s what you’d think if you saw me, too.
I tell myself that I should talk this over with Jesse first. Don’t do anything stupid. Don’t think with your goddamn dick.
But Bazoniuth is so close to me. She’s still in Karen’s body, with all her beauty and curves that I’ve laid eyes on so many times. There’s that, too—how much of Karen is in there when Bazoniuth is in control?
“I… I can’t, unless Karen wants to. That’s not your body.”
“Unless Karen wants to?” Bazoniuth throws back her hair and laughs, her throat exposed bare. “Ronnie, this was Karen’s idea.”
Demons lie. But, as my groin stirs thinking about Karen fantasizing about me, I want to believe that Bazoniuth isn’t lying. When I think back to before Bazoniuth entered the picture, I remember all the times Karen looked at me a little longer than she’d looked at everyone else, something unspoken in her gaze. Maybe I’m trying to read everything in the past in my favor. Or maybe all the times her skirt had hiked up when she sat next to me weren’t accidents; maybe she’d had another hidden intent all the times she’d placed a hand on my shoulder and made the hairs on the back of my neck raise with desire.
I meet Bazoniuth’s gaze directly. Looking into her eyes is usually too intense and uncanny for me to stand for more than a couple seconds. But I’m looking for something this time, even if I don’t know what. And I find it when those pupils contract to reveal Karen, if only for a moment.
“It was my idea.”
That’s all it takes. Karen’s pupils widen as Bazoniuth takes over again. She straddles me, her dyed chestnut brown hair tumbling down over her shoulder to her waist, her weight welcome against me. She presses up to me as she kisses me, deep and hungry, like she’s punishing me for holding out so long. The gasp that escapes past my lips, followed by her rough and low laugh of appreciation, have me hard in an instant.
“God,” I breathe, holding on to her hips, “I—fuck.”
She kisses me like no one ever has, at first soft like thunder, then sharp as lightning when she tugs at my lips with her teeth, sending a bolt of pleasure through me. She takes in every one of my heated breaths, her hips rocking against me, just shy of my hard-on.
I don’t feel as guilty about this as I probably should. We go from kissing to groping each other, rough and heady with need. We don’t bother getting out of all our clothes. She tugs my cock out and slips aside her panties, her pussy lips fat and flushed pink, shining with slick. She’s tight, moaning against my shoulder as she lowers herself onto me. Her nails dig into my skin, leaving red crescent dimples in their wake. I’m burning up with how bad I want her, how hot she is around me, wet and ready for me.
Jesse is gentle with Karen. They aren’t subtle about their hookups; I’ve watched a couple of times through a crack in the door or a keyhole. They’d be tangled together, Jesse’s black-and-gray tattoos dark against Karen’s golden, dusky skin. He’d be soft. Loving.
Nothing like the roughness of fucking Bazoniuth. Sex with Bazoniuth is just bodies colliding in search of release. There isn’t any real affection, only taboo and wrongness, chasing pleasure and orgasm before the consequences catch up.
“Harder,” Bazoniuth murmurs, grinding her hips against mine.
I thrust up in response, sparking bliss over both of us.
“There you go,” she says, a lazy grin spreading over her face. I buck again beneath her, slamming a moan out of her as she slaps a hand to my chest, clutching at whatever she can as she gasps, bouncing on my cock.
“You like that?” I murmur, grinning.
She fixes me with a stare swirling darkly with lust. God fucking damn. Every muscle in my body pulls taut beneath her. Her ass smacks against me, her thighs soft and jiggling. Bazoniuth leans forward and stretches out over my body, her breasts pressing into my chest, pussy still riding my cock, deeper now at this angle, her ass round and shaking. An incredible view.
She takes my hands away from her hips and slams them down over my head, pinning them down with surprising power. Jerked out of my rhythm, I slow my pace down, which only serves to draw a long groan out from my throat as the ridge of my cock drags against the rough surface of her G-spot.
“Don’t tell me you’re getting tired already,” she breathes into my ear. Chills run down my spine as I shift. I spread my legs a little wider and drive deeper into her, forcing a little oh! past her lips.
“Just getting started.”
The orgasm comes on quick for both of us, cresting over in an unstoppable wave. Her cunt pulses against my cock with the force of her trembling climax. I have to remind myself to pull out—I have no idea if she’s on birth control or not—and I do so just in time, coming in a hot burst that leaves her mound glossy with cum.
From then on, we steal more moments when Jesse isn’t around. We fuck in the backseat of the car sometimes; Jesse can never tell that the smell of sex hanging in the air isn’t his. If we manage to get a motel room, we’ll fuck sometimes on my bed, sometimes on Jesse’s, Bazoniuth on top, both of us rough and ruthless, the way we like it.
When she’s alone with me, Bazoniuth’s will wins out. But Karen can still surface, particularly around Jesse. I keep waiting for her to tell him what we’re doing, but I’ve quickly realized that her sweet smile hides a domineering streak. She loves to wield our secret between us like a knife, and I’m too much of a coward to tell Jesse directly. Jesse closes his eyes when Karen kisses him, but she keeps hers open so she can glance over and meet my watching eyes, reminding me of our affair. It’s made it harder for me to look Jesse in the eyes, especially while my body still hums with my ever-present desire for him.
Still, I didn’t imagine that I’d ever have Bazoniuth and Karen at the same time. But I guess Karen would have surfaced with me at some point, even while it’s just us. The differences between Bazoniuth and Karen are obvious, even as they share the same body, reminding me that Bazoniuth isn’t some other side of Karen, but an entirely different entity.
This time, we’ve broken into someone’s abandoned vacation home. Such a useless luxury. But it’s a level of comfort we’ve come to miss on the road, where the world’s erosion has become more and more obvious. Ash darkens the sky. A fire is always burning somewhere on the horizon.
“Oh fuck,” I say when I notice Bazoniuth’s pupils receding, marking Karen’s emergence. I’ve learned since the first time we fucked that Karen’s aware of things before and after Bazoniuth retreats, so she knows what’s going on around her and what her body’s doing. Still, I’m bottomed out in her pussy, and I have her pinned under me with her legs up over my shoulders. I don’t know how she’ll react.
“I…” I begin, scrambling for something to say.
But she reaches out and presses a finger to my lips, hushing me.
“Don’t stop,” she says, her smile sinful.
I comply. My hands snake down her sides and come to a rest on her wide hips and fat thighs, my thumbs digging into her soft skin and flesh. With a strong hold on her, I pound against her, my strokes fast and shallow, coaxing moans from her throat.
Loud. The whole cul-de-sac can probably hear us.
“Gonna come,” I groan. Karen rocks more fervently against me, her own pleasure cresting. Then, my orgasm begins to spill over. I pull out and come on her stomach in spurts; her stretch marks shimmer like pearls. Her cunt pulses as she whines, as if still asking for my cock, but orgasm breaks over her anyway. She squeezes her eyes shut, her lips parting as she clutches my hands, holds me as if nothing else anchors her to this world. She quakes with the force of her pleasure, the cum on her stomach streaking.
I’ll have a helluva time explaining the nail marks on the backs of my hands to Jesse.
Karen falls still as her breathing events out, soft and slow, her eyes half-lidded. I let her legs down, then position myself so my cock, half-hard and glistening with her wetness and my cum, is level with her lips.
“Clean me up,” I say. Bazoniuth would object to my arrogance and throw me down to chasten me for it, but a cock-drunk grin spreads over Karen’s lips as she leans in to oblige me. She takes my entire cock into her mouth, sucking off our juices in one long swallow. She runs her tongue along the length of my cock, stops again to swirl her tongue on the head and slit to catch any stray drops. There’s a line of cum running down her thigh.
But Karen has her own ways to chasten me. I’m about to pull myself away from her, but she wrestles me down and has me on my back as she gets up. She climbs up to my face and plants one knee on either side of me.
“Goes both ways,” she says. I look up past her mound, past the soft overhang of her stomach and her round breasts, to see her smirking down at me. She spreads her pussy lips apart with two slender fingers, revealing her juicy clit and the delicate folds nestled between her thighs.
Fuck. There’s no part of me that would even consider refusing her. I trace my tongue up her thigh. I give her clit a wet kiss, making her sigh contentedly. I run my tongue along her slit, grab her pussy lips with my teeth, suckle away the mess trickling from her cunt, urge whimpers and moans from her, coax out another small orgasm. She gasps as her legs go weak.
“What a good boy,” she says, pulling way from me. I flush, but not with indignation—if anything, I’m prickling with another coil of desire from her calling me that. She cups my face in my hands and kisses me, open-mouthed, lips soft, tongue seeking mine.
When I open my eyes to look into hers again, it’s Bazoniuth’s black, blown pupils looking back at me. I expect myself to withdraw, or to be surprised at least, but instead, I push harder into the kiss. I plant my hands on her waist—on their waist—as I trace my tongue along their jaw, kiss their neck, taste their spit-slicked lips. I watch as their eyes go from Karen’s to Bazoniuth’s and back, the two of them watching me together.
“Goddamn,” I breathe in the moments when we break apart, before we fall into to another kiss. I run a hand down their side and cup their mound, stroking their silky-wet clit with a few fingers, my nails catching the tender bud, my palm slick.
It strikes me then that I’m in love with them. Not just Jesse, not just Karen, but Bazoniuth too, as fucked up as that might be. There’s a part of me that works to break me down, a voice that tells me I’m a burden who’s just tagging along and providing no real value, even as I know that that’s not true. I do all the car repairs and construction work we’ve run into, after all. I’ve carried my own weight. But that part of me loves to hear Bazoniuth validating my worst thoughts. It’s a guilty pleasure in itself, wallowing in that self-flagellation: I can excuse all my bad behavior. I can indulge in my vices. If I’m truly so worthless, then there’s no need for self-preservation.
But hurtling toward self-destruction is no way to live, nor can I pretend that a demon can ever truly love with the tenderness of a human. I swallow the realization down, just as I swallow down every love I’ve ever felt. I don’t believe in machismo, but that doesn’t stop me from bottling everything anyway, or from converting my emotional energy to aggression and channeling it into kissing Bazoniuth and Karen harder, my hands clutching them like they’re a lifeline.
I won’t stop Jesse and Karen from finding an exorcist who can cast Bazoniuth out.
But I hate that there’s some part of me that’ll be sorry to see her go.