A special thank you to Prestige Octopus for editing.
Jacob lay in the near darkness, the odor of sweat and sex filling the air. A pool of his cum began to dry on his stomach. Dean McCullugh’s gift lay beside him on the floor. He sat up and thumbed through the pages. Despite the book’s apparent age, the pages showed no signs of aging, still a vibrant white. He stopped on a passage he felt was appropriate for his current situation.
“While one’s peers may think them the bringer of evil, one must instill the notion that to overcome an evil, one must emulate that same evil.” This was it. This was what it meant to be a part of the Peregrinus Flammae. Centuries of study passed onto Dean McCullugh gave them the knowledge they needed to bring about the New Age for the Carnal Prince.
He stood up and looked around the room. As he scanned the blackness, the memory of his first meeting with Dean McCullugh came rushing back. At the time, he was a shy, timid freshman who set out to be the next great Biblical scholar. But Dean McCullugh had different, more fantastic, plans. After that first meeting, his whole world changed. She quickly brought him under her direct supervision. Jacob clung to her as well. Even at a small college, he found he wasn’t the most socially adept. The Peregrinus gave him something he never had, a sense of belonging. They believed in him, but more importantly, Dean McCullugh believed in him.
Over time, through guided readings and near-weekly late-night meetings, Jacob finally learned everything the Peregrinus Flammae stood for. It was a means to liberate this world from his material worship. People were put on Earth to procreate and celebrate life. Those who seed and offspring are the most well-equipped to guide those less fortunate. Everyone has a home in the New Age; one just needs to learn where they belong.
Returning to the present, he went to the doorway he came through, leaving the candles burning on the cold marble floor. He examined the room one last time and then grabbed a book. He needed some extra reading to stay focused during this critical time. The anteroom in which the attendants prepared him lay vacant, with no sign of the candles that previously lit his path. He gathered his clothes from the last room and dressed. Once dressed, he checked his phone. Julia texted him. A grin began to form as he opened it.
JULIA: hey! Thanks again for showing me around today!
JACOB: no issue! Glad I was able to help out
JULIA: i was gonna check out the library tomorrow after my 1pm class finishes. Could you show me around?
JACOB: i’d be glad to. I already know of at least one book that you’re gonna love
JULIA: ooh, i like the sound of that. Maybe you can grab it for me, so no one else gets it?
JACOB: trust me, i don’t think anyone else knows we even have this
He locked his phone and put it back in his pocket. He could text her back once he got home. He needed to prepare for tomorrow and beyond. Sure, Julia’s eagerness to hang out helped, but that didn’t mean he didn’t need to be diligent. Dean McCullugh expected nothing short of perfection for everything to work.
Staring at the ceiling, Julia sighed, realizing how much she loved every bit of her new home. The lush gardens and scenic views that littered the campus gave her ample areas to read outside. Everything was nearby, so she learned she could bike or walk anywhere she needed. The icing on the cake was how friendly everyone seemed to be. She wouldn’t consider the handful of people she met friends, but none of them struck her as pretentious or an asshole.
Everyone’s cheerful disposition was beneficial, considering how foreign it was compared to North Carolina. Even with the GPS on her phone, she still asked strangers how to get around. Without fail, each of them would point her in the right direction, occasionally striking up a polite conversation. It appeared the university, specifically Dean McCullugh’s influence, was widespread locally. Being part of her program gave Julia a sense of pride, which allowed her to become more comfortable in the new setting.
Finally ready to get on with her day, she rolled onto her feet and looked at her phone. She had about two hours to get to her first class, which was plenty of time for her morning routine. The biggest time sink of the morning would be what to wear on her first day as a TA. She thumbed through her closet, pulling out a slew of combinations. Her problem was twofold: she had to look professional to teach and get Jacob’s attention. After countless combinations of outfits, she finally settled on a loose-fitting dark green blouse and calf-length black skirt. She completed the look with a simple pair of comfortable flats. She planned on walking to campus, so any heel or wedge was out of the question.
She shut down her laptop and placed it in her canvas tote, along with her notebook, for her first day of class. Even though it was just syllabus day, she wanted to be prepared. There is all the time that one kid that asks fifty-three questions right after “any more questions.” She hated those people but weirdly wanted one. To her, it meant she was really here. She wanted, no needed, students that annoyed her. It was a rite of passage that Julia needed to complete the final step into the life of academia.
Thumbing through her bag one last time, she went through a mental checklist: laptop and charger, notes, notebook, pens, snacks, and water bottle. Of course, she would stop at her new favorite coffee shop, but she needed something more than caffeine to run on. After her final run-through, she slung the straps over her shoulder and took her first steps in her life.
Jacob walked into Dean McCullugh’s office and took the empty seat across from her. She looked the same, as if her closet only consisted of several versions of a black pencil skirt, white blouse, and black jacket; her pendant was the only ever-changing piece. In all his years under her tutelage, Jacob can not recall her ever wearing the same pendant twice. Until today.
Today, she wore the same pendant from the first day Julia arrived on campus. It resembled the same tattoo that encompassed her torso, only flattened out. In its full display, it was quite the ensemble. It flirted with the line between intimidating and sophisticated. An impeccably polished silver sword lay at the center, spreading ruby and topaz flames that constantly sparkled in the sunlight. It certainly wasn’t her prettiest or flashiest pendant, but it clearly meant the most.
He had asked her about the pins in the past. She dismissed the question, telling him they were from her “travels.” He knew what she meant and never pushed the matter further. Given her role within the Peregrinus, he knew each came with its price. The numerous trials she subjected herself to in the name of the Peregrinus were too many to be recounted. She earned each one of those seemingly minor baubles. But that wasn’t all she achieved; it led her to the top, to be selected by the Carnal Prince to bring in the New Age. All they needed was this last piece, which lay just within reach.
“Please tell me you have the book on you,” Dean McCullugh leveled at Jacob, not taking her eyes from the papers she thumbed through.
“Yes, ma’am. Of course. It’s right here,” he replied, leaning over and opening his bag. He shuffled some of his other books around and pulled out the tattered manifesto, finally setting it on her desk.
“Good. While she works on this, we will set the next lure.” Dean McCullugh opened a drawer and pulled out a small piece of parchment that looked just as ancient as the book Jacob had brought. She randomly opened it near the back and slid the parchment in. “While I don’t think this is needed. I’d rather be safe than sorry.”
“Of course. Might I ask what you put in there?” he asked as he returned the book to his bag.
“It’s a snippet of my notes when I first read through it. It should guide her into asking the right kind of questions.”
Jacob smiled, knowing how much this meant to her. She all the time seemed to be several steps ahead. To pluck a specific set of notes on one of the thousands of tomes she possessed on the Peregrinus demonstrated a level of planning Jacob couldn’t start to fathom.
“Forgive me for speaking out of turn, Dean McCullugh, but you have everything figured out.”
She let a small smile form, “Thank you, Jacob. I appreciate that. But go, we have work to do. Remember, she will bring about the New Age. We cannot fail.”
Jacob lowered his head in servitude and swallowed hard at the stakes, “Yes, ma’am.”
“Good. Now you may go. Report back to me first thing in the morning.”
He picked his bag up and left the room, and it finally dawned on him. Dean McCullugh effectively just set her life’s work in his hands. Not just her life’s work, though, the generations of Peregrinus Matriarchs who came before. This realization sent his mind running wild with all the different methods tonight could go wrong. How did he even end up in this position anyway? What made Dean McCullugh select him as the bait? His stomach turned into knots as he walked through the maze of hallways to the fresh air. That’s what he needed, fresh air. A quick stroll through the gardens should put his mind at ease. Something about the flowers, he wondered.
He pressed through a side door leading directly to a garden connected to McCrady Hall. He practically glided over the cobblestone pathway and into his little personal paradise.
Julia sighed as the last students trickled out of the 50-person lecture hall and dropped into her chair. Today was merely syllabus day, and she was exhausted from dealing with the sheer volume of the underclassmen. She closed her eyes to collect herself, but the door opened no sooner than she did, and she could hear someone walk in. She recomposed herself, running her hands down the front of her blouse to smooth out wrinkles from her slouched position. Much to her surprise, it wasn’t a student but Jacob.
As soon as she saw him, a renewed energy washed over her, and she smiled faintly, “Oh, I wasn’t expecting to see you until this afternoon.”
“Campus is smaller than you think. I met with Dean McCullugh earlier and thought you might be interested in this.” He sat his messenger bag on the table and rummaged through it. “Aha! Here it is.” Jacob smiled as he pulled out the old, leather-bound book and handed it to her.
She read the title aloud and confusedly looked at Jacob, “What is this?”
“Something I think you’ll find interesting. It’s from the Dean’s private library; she also had me read it my first year. According to the book, there is a cult called the Peregrinus Flamae, which believes in salvation through sexual pleasure.”
“Wait, really?” Julia eagerly began to thumb through the pages, scanning over the text. “Damn, I was at least hoping for some old English, not Latin.”
Jacob laughed, “Of course, you really don’t expect crazy medieval cults to give into the times, do you? Don’t worry, it’s a surprisingly easy read. Once you get into it, you can’t seem to put it down.”
Julia put the book into her bag, “Thanks! I’ll get into it today. I can put off my classwork until tomorrow.”
“Trust me when I say that. It has a way of keeping the reader hooked. I didn’t leave my room all weekend once I got into it.”
She let out a little chuckle, casually thumbing through the pages. “If you say so, I doubt the tedium of translating an old man’s rants will be that exciting.”
“You’d be surprised. Anyway, let me know what you think of it. I’ll see you later.” Jacob picked up his bag and walked out the door, smiling as he sat on a bench outside the classroom. He knew exactly what was about to unfold and waited patiently.
As soon as she was alone, she pulled the book out and opened it to the first page. Jacob was right; for whatever reason, the Latin of the book seemed to immediately translate as she read. She expected somewhat of a learning curve due to the age and colloquialisms, but it read simply as English. The first few pages were the ordinary flowery language that only demonstrates how much an author loves to hear their own voice. But within moments, that faded away into what Julia could only fathom as a lunatic’s ranting.
Despite the absurdity that came with every sentence, she couldn’t seem to put the book down. The more she read, the more she began entranced by the anonymous author’s ramblings. Whoever this man was, Julia at least assumed it was a man, who knew how to capture an audience, she wondered as she plowed through the pages. Another strange thing happened as she turned each page; she became increasingly more turned on. Once the air conditioner kicked on, the growing wet spot on her thong sent a chill through her until and she realized what was happening. In addition to the ever-increasing warmth in her crotch, every shift caused the material of her bra to tease her nipples, quickly stiffening them. Nothing in the immediate area particularly turned her on, but she had this strange urge to begin masturbating.
Summoning her willpower, she ignored the urges and pressed on. Time was running out before the custodial staff closed the building, and she needed to get through as much of this book as efficient. While in her mind, she was focused entirely on reading, her subconscious had a different plan. As she continued to read on, her left hand made its way under her skirt and began to slowly rub her clit. Once her finger touched the swelling bean, she bit her lower lip to stifle a moan.
She slowly rubbed her clit, almost in rhythm with the writings. As he increased the fervor with which he accused society of being “morally reprehensible,” she increased her speed. Like a composer, he would transition from the fire and brimstone to how we redeem ourselves. During these moments, she would slow down, almost running away from an impending orgasm. She never went over the edge but constantly inched towards it, all the while completely unaware.
Turning the page to a new diatribe, this one opens on how the end of times will come when the most debased amongst us lead us. Not the most original concept, she wondered; history is awash with civilizations being led by the most perverted. Sure, they all failed, so maybe that was the beauty of it. He wasn’t wrong, but no one would admit he was right. Moving beyond the opening and into his “evidence,” her middle finger snaked its way across her pussy lips and then inside. As if acting on its own accord, the finger quickly pressed against her G-spot, imitating a “come here” motion. This quickly brought breathy and audible moans to her, but her mind seemed split. Any passerby would easily hear the sopping noises of her finger fucking herself and the accompanying cries. But in her mind, Julia was diligently sitting at her desk reading.
She slipped her ring finger into her slit in her slow game of escalation, increasing the pressure against her G-spot. It took a few finger wiggles, but she soon stretched to accommodate the extra space. Her moans grew louder as she increased the speed at which she finger-fucked herself, her juices pooling in the chair. Thankfully, some part of her had the sense to take off her thong at some point. Her skirt was bunched around her waist, safe from the mess she had created.
The deeper she went into the book, the more unhinged the writings became. It spoke of a New Age and how true freedom is sexual freedom. The idea of a sexually liberated society did speak to a part of Julia. Of her female friends, she was definitely on the kinkier side. As her conscious mind briefly derailed about what got her going, the index finger found itself alongside her other fingers inside her. She worked her vigorously back and forth, her moans becoming grunts and low screams.
The book continued about redemption through gratification, which provided a quiet haven compared to mad ravings on the previous pages. Mimicking the calming and hopeful words on the page, Julia eased her thrusts, relishing the feeling of being filled, and moaned loudly. She slowly ground her hips into the chair, pressing the fingers deeper into her. She needed more, but her body wouldn’t go any faster. She was a captive to the book; she wouldn’t discover her release until the last words were read.
Her conscious mind poured over the pages, devouring each word like she had never seen a book before. She couldn’t believe something like this would be so unknown to the public. If the author’s timeline is remotely accurate, this book would be at least 1,500 years old by her count. If anything, it would be considered a relic fit for a museum. Despite this, she didn’t want to distribute it with anyone. She just wanted to keep reading; Jacob sharing this treasure with her was more than a gift. It was a miracle. She knew what she wanted to research. She needed to learn as much about the Peregrinus Flammae as she could.
Julia slid off the chair and into a crouched position. She set the book down at her feet and continued to read. She sat again, lining up a good angle to read and finish her mission. She had just gotten accustomed to four fingers inside but felt a stronger urge. Pulling her four fingers out of her pussy, she lubed up the rest of her hand. Making sure she was ready, she bunched her fingertips together and pressed them back inside her. She whimpered and lightly bounced as her hole stretched to take the hand. Eventually, it made its way inside, but just as her thumb entered, her phone pinged, pulling everything back to reality. She pulled her fist from herself, a enormous pool of juices on the floor beneath her. Mortified, she desperately looked around for something to clean herself with. Unable to discover anything in her panicked state, she grabbed her underwear off the desk and used them the best she could. She tucked them in her bag and then grabbed the phone.
JACOB: i wanted to check in, see how you were enjoying the book
JULIA: its something else, thats for sure. i think im like a quarter of the way through already
JACOB: told you it was an easy read
JULIA: no kidding, are you still on campus by chance?
JACOB: yeah, why, whats up?
JULIA: would you wanna grab dinner?
JACOB: sounds good. im guessing youre in the same spot i left you
Julia looked at the time on her phone. It was almost 6:15. She had been reading for nearly 5 hours but was more than 3/4 of the way through the book. She had never read anything that fast before. Something about it made her not want to put it down, but then there was the other thing. She wasn’t sure if it was the book or something coming over her, but to begin reading and then almost fisting yourself wasn’t ordinary. She couldn’t possibly read something that made her do that. Just as she was gonna put it away, she noticed a small piece of parchment stuck into the spine. She looked it over briefly, trying to decipher it. It looked like notes about the New Age and Carnal Prince. Maybe a previous researcher’s musings, she wondered before tucking it back in and closing the book.
Perfect timing to get put together; her dinner date walked through the door.
The table the server sat them down was in the corner, away from the door and kitchen. Jacob requested it since the place was nearly empty. He wanted to be away from everything to suss out just how far she made it during her reading session. He knew she didn’t finish; she never had that earthshaking scream that came with finishing the book. Regardless of how much she read, he knew she was deep enough that she couldn’t get out. Now it was a matter of the finishing touches.
The moment they sat down, the conversation dramatically shifted. They quit with the small talk of the first day of class and what they most looked forward to.
“So, what did you think about the book?” Jacob asked, feigning ignorance of her earlier performance.