Chapter 9. The Tank

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There were the sounds of electronic beeps and an blaring alarm as the glass walls of the tank rose. Laying in the centre of a grate was a gorgeous woman with black skin and no hair. Her breasts, while small were sharp. Her lips were modest, and her there was not an ounce of fat on her.

Her naked body shivered as she was cast out of prison of water and transferred to the chilly air. Within her glass cage there had been no air, no wind, and no cold, all there had been was caring darkness and the promise of a better life.

Frank nodded to two women in togas, who did not hesitate for a moment. They groaned as they picked up the dark skinned beauty and grunted as they placed her on a near by bench. They viewed the creature with a mixture of awe and disgust before moving away.

They knew what the woman was, or they knew what she had been before. The woman and the idea behind her existence disgusted them on a biological level.

Looming above his creation, Frank examined the woman thoroughly. He checked her arms for tissue deterioration, her smallish breasts, her abbs, and her vagina; prodding and scanning every nook and cranny. He did this not out of pleasure but as a painter surveying his work for flaws.

His probes caused his assistants to blush and the taller of the pair to shuffle uncomfortably. Jealousy touched their hearts and they swore to themselves that it felt like the sorcerer was touching them and not this thing.

Tonight they would pleasure themselves while imaging laying on that table, their master digging his fingers inside them.

When his fingers marched against her groin the dark woman gave out a deep moan of pleasure. It was nothing more than a pleasant by-product of his work.

Pleased, he waved his hand and a door appeared from nowhere. “Please escort Ktch’jarl to his… I mean her room.” The two women nodded and one of them retrieved a wheel chair.

Frank scanned his domain. Using the power of the rift crystal he had done some renovations to his hotel.

One such improvement was to add a moderately sized genetics lab. The lab consisted of six vats, each of which could fit a large human. Computers and other devices weren’t far away, each showing the status of his invested employees.

Eager to keep things moving, Frank waved his hand and another door appeared on the opposite side of the lab. He opened the door to reveal a hotel room that held a degree of luxury that was about three thousand years beyond the people of the world were capable of.

The carpets, the wallpaper, the chairs, and the bed were beyond advanced to these people. The woman sleeping in the bed however, was 100% from this world.

Lady Neri,” Frank said moving inside.

Startled, Neri sat up. Like everyone of the Abstract’s new staff members, Neri had trouble sleeping in her new room, she was used to relaxing on straw in the coldest and dampest of places. She looked at her master, fearful that she had done something wrong to earn his attention.

Nature, in its hit and miss evolution logic, had cursed the woman with nightmarish features. She was a hunchback, straggly hairs hung from her lips, she had hair in wrong places, and a host of other deformities plagued the unfortunate woman. Only her mental health remained untouched. As for her emotions and mentality, well, the world outside the hotel was not nice.

Hoping not to panic Nari further, Frank gave a polite bow, which was unheard of. A man of his obvious station, bowing to a servant was… frowned upon in society. He was acting as if she were a guest instead of a simple slave.

Before he could explain his intrusion, Nari gasped and scrambled out of bed to prostrate herself before her master. “Forgive me, Master,” she said cowering. The fact that she was naked didn’t seem to be a problem with her.

Nari,” Frank said, trying to placate the woman. He bent down and placed a hand on her shoulder, she flinched on instinct and Frank could she that her back supported several old scars. “Look at me, Nari,” he said soothingly.

She did so and the owner of this place didn’t dare look away from her deformed face. “I can make you beautiful. I can make you healthy and strong. Do you wish me to use my magic to change you?”

Nari’s eyes went wide with hope. She, like many of the Abstract’s staff had heard how the sorcerer used great glass cauldrons to regrow entire legs and arms. He healed everyone, the whores of their vile diseases, the old, the sick. They came out whole and crying for joy.

Tears weld up in her mismatched eyes at the prospect of being normal, “Yes, Master. Can… Can you truly make me beautiful? What must I do?”

So eager and so desperate. A person with some crazy ambition could rule this world in a week with the right tools and work ethic. Frank didn’t have such ambition, he just wanted these people gone. He wanted his nice little bar back, but as long as they were here he might as charge them rent.

From out of his back pocket, he placed a small metal ball in front of Nari. “Pick up the ball, Nari, and say “Transfer two years of my youth to Frank.” One year to change you, another to free you from my service. When you get your new body you will be free to go wherever you want. No slavery, no strings.”

Nari looked at the ball. She had also heard of the sorcerer’s deal before. The slaves would sacrifice a year of their youth to Frank for freedom. One man had traded five years for a few gold pieces and jewels.

She also knew that there were those who rejected such promise, those who had gained far more than simple freedome.

The poor woman looked up at Frank and felt a shred of courage push her to say, “Forgive me, master, but I have nothing to go back to. My,” she bit back the words, “husband, married me only for my father’s dowry, then after a year of being treated as a slave he sold me to the man you bought me from. I would have been sold to a brothel or made into a toy if I was half as beautiful as the other women.”

She dared to stand showing off her ill form, her mutated face turning a deep pink as she displayed her new master her sex and bare breasts. “Remake me into your woman, Master. I will give you not my life, but my love and my body. Turn me into your tool. Your lover, your weapon. For there is no life for me beyond your kingdom.”

She hoped that she said the ritual right. The other women had said those words and had claimed the man had not struck out at their impudence.

Frank thought that she was laying it on a bit thick. Most of the employees that he had gotten were talentless losers, the type of rejects that one would see begging off the streets.

None of them had any schooling and the most skilled of them were carpenters and masons, not the type of people he really needed. Only a very small few wanted more than a few silver coins and their freedom. Nari was looking to be one of them.

You want to become my… wife?” Frank asked, flattered but not really interested in a serious relationship at the moment.

Not your wife,” Nari said, lowering her head, “I would never think of myself worthy of one as powerful as you. A mistress or concubine, maybe. Please, Master.”

Again, Frank felt flattered. After what happened to Cyme he thought about tossing everyone out and just moping around for a bit. “You do understand that this is a magical place. You might see things that frighten you, things that question your beliefs about Gods. You may even never be able to leave this place again. Think carefully.”

Nari did. She contemplated how her family had given her to a monster, who had squandered her inheritance and sold her as if she were nothing. How the Gods had punished her at birth and doomed her to life of isolation. She thought about the outside world and things that she would not miss. When she did all of that she viewed her room.

Instead of throwing her into a dungeon, Frank had given her a room to her own. He looked right into her eyes like she was an equal and treated her as if she were normal.

He could have done anything he wanted to the slaves. The sorcerer could have beaten them or resold them to other countries, he may have even stolen their youth by force or used them for experiments. Instead, he had given them food, cleaned them, and allowed them to stay in private rooms.

Standing up straighter, which due to her hump must have been difficult for her, Nari spoke, “Make me yours. I pledge my heart and body to you, Master. I ask only that you do not abandoned me.”

Moved by her declaration and suspecting that her vow will last for two whole seconds before the shit hit the fan, Frank gestured to the laboratory. “Then follow me. Don’t bother putting on your clothes, you wont need them.”

As they entered the room, Nari stared in awe at the glass tanks. Covering her breasts and sex with her hands, she moved to the closest glass cylinder. Floating in a greenish solution were two young girls inside.

They looked to be twins, their facial features and bodies clones of one another. Neither of the pair were beautiful, half their faces were covered in old scar tissue and each of them were missing an arm and a leg.

Are they dead?” Nari asked.

Sleeping. The fluid is breathable.” Frank pushed a button on what looked to be a tablet with many runic symbols, an image of some ghastly monstrosity appeared on the screen’s surface. “Lila and Zila. Conjoined twins.”

Nari felt her stomach churn at the sight. There was a human head but it had two faces fighting for space. She looked up at the pair and realized what the sorcerer was doing, Frank was separating the pair, giving them each a body.

In another tank, a ten year old girl looked to be sleeping in a similar liquid, the small thing was a lovely sort and had the type of face that caused Nari to feel a spot of envy. Next was a man with blue and red strings where his right foot was.

The other tanks held people who Nari had seen when she was first entered the Abstract, what they were doing inside the vessel was beyond her, they appeared to be unchanged.

Turning on Nari, Frank asked, “So what do you want? Fat or thin? Beautiful or plain? Eye colour? Hair colour? Breast size? Tattoos, birthmarks, extra fingers, claws, tails, venom, fangs.” Frank held up his right hand and arcs of electricity zapped between his fingers. “The very power of Gods. What do you want, Nari?”

Nari was overwhelmed with what she had just witnessed. She viewed Frank with the fear one reserves for an earthquake, “I.I don’t know.”

Come on, Nari. I am giving you immortality here. Long after you are dead and gone, people will be writing stories about you. A demi-goddess who fought an army. The woman who shot fire from her eyes. The monster who fought such and such hero. The empress queen whose beauty triggered a war. What have you always wanted?”

Frank’s assistants, having completed their duty, entered the laboratory with the wheelchair. They each took one look at Nari and disgust were sprayed across their faces. It was a look that Nari was familiar with.

Remembering those same expression on her husband’s face, Nari let out a snarl, “Beauty. I want men to drop to their knees and pledge themselves to me. I want their eyes to explode from the mere sight of me. Women across the world shall look at me with envy and jealousy. I want that pig, Detoritus to kiss my feet before I kill him.”

Having no idea who this Detoritus but guessing that he was going to be visiting him soon, Frank gestured to the empty tank. “Then hop inside, my new mistress.”

A second of hesitation, that was all that Nari allowed herself to partake in before she stood upon the grate. She watched as the glass walls descended upon her and flinched as the pneumatic system let out a hiss. She looked at Frank through the glass and imagined her new life being his woman.

Despite the excitement, Nari felt a wave of tiredness assault her. She slumped against the glass wall, barely noticing that a viscous liquid was entering the tank.

Frank watched every second as his new girlfriend was engulfed with the liquid. Only when the entire tank was filled to capacity did he take a seat and begin to type. First would come the repairs, fixing Nari’s genetic data, turning her into what she should be. Once that was done then he would see what he could improve.

He looked to the two women who had so far assisted him, “You two can take the rest of the day off, I’ll be busy for a while.”

They looked to one another. One of them, a woman with brown hair and a sharp nose looked at Nari, “Master, are you really going to make that creature your mistress?”

Frank chose not to hear the bitterness in their voices. “It will take half a year to fix the damage to her body.”

So much time?” his other assistant asked incredulously, she was stout with a plump face and round cheeks. A simple fat injection had turned her into her society’s version of the perfect woman. “But it only took you a few days to separate the twins. She is not missing an arm, and, and I’ve seen you make the ugliest girl beautiful in less than an hour.” she touched her own plump cheeks.

Assistant one pointed to the room they just came from, “I saw you turn a man into a woman. Truly you are powerful, Master. Only the gods could be your equal.”

Ktch’jarl was easy. It was just a matter of using a retrovirus to change his Y chromosome into an X, and a few hormone therapy sessions. His body did most of the work for me. No girls. Nari’s body is all junk. It would have been easier just to put her consciousness inside another body.” Frank grinned. “But where would be the fun in that?”