She had been drifting in the clouds, awaiting her judgement, when she heard it. The voice of a cleric, chanting a Resurrection. She shook her head, refusing to answer the tug on her soul, when another voice chimed in. "What's wrong? Why isn't it working?" She knew that voice, and she turned suddenly, running to answer the call of what could only be her beloved.
The Linear Guild was not having a good time of it. After escaping from prison, they had realized that they were horribly lost. All three had taken turns at trying some tracking, but they had gotten more and more off track, until at last they found themselves picking up some cleric outside of Greysky City. Nale had taken him on probation; he still hadn't given up on the "Evil Opposite" theme, but the parallel was decidedly weak. They'd set sail in the opposite direction, and washed up on some sort of orcish island that was at least a bit closer to the Western Continent, but not by much. The cleric had found the grave of what had to be a powerful warrior, based on the headstone, and Nale had "encouraged" him to resurrect it. But even that hadn't paid off: based on the body that was reforming it was just an orc chick.
She seemed dazed at first, as she readjusted to life, and Nale noticed that she was very athletic and quite fetching. She blushed in embarrassment when she came to more fully, and the old cleric, out of pity, tossed her a robe. Nale rolled his eyes, but didn't object. The girl seemed confused, she was struggling with something.
Therkla opened her eyes to see what had to be Elan standing over her, though it seemed that he'd grown a beard. How long had she been dead for, and where were the dwarf and the elf. "Elan," she asked, confused. "Is that you?"
The man frowned at her. "How do you know my brother?" he ordered suspiciously.
"Brother? You two have to be -"
"Twins, yes, I know. Now answer my question, girl. What was your relation to him? Are you a fallen ally of some sort?" Her blush told him all he needed to know. "I see. So you're some discarded lover of his, I suppose. Hmm…" He smiled; unlike Elan's, there was an evil, though attractive, twist to it. "How would you feel about a little revenge. I am the leader of the Linear Guild" - he motioned to two others she hadn't noticed before - "and it is our mission to seek out and destroy my worthless brother and foolish allies."
Therkla was not paying attention; her heart sank when she saw the beautiful girl who was standing behind him. There was no way she wasn't his girlfriend. She had just gone from a bad situation from a worse one. "No," she said aloud. "I can't… that would be betraying Elan." But inside, her heart rebeled at abandoning the man that looked so much like the one she loved.
Despite her refusal, Therkla hadn't been able to leave. For one, she didn't have anywhere to go; for another, she wasn't sure she wanted to. She knew she could never be with Nale, but she still didn't want to leave him. The other girl came over, sitting beside her. She was so gorgeous even Therkla couldn't help feeling it. Sabine smiled coyly, and stretched.
Suddenly, she was transformed; batlike wings sprung from her back, her eyes glowed red, and she sprouted a tale. Therkla jumped. "Are you some kind of devil?" she asked nervously.
"I'm a succubus - shapeshifter, energy drainer, and incarnation of lust," Sabine winked, and edged closer. "But that's not the point. Nale wanted me to talk to you about the team. He'd really like it if you joined."
"But, I promised Elan… I quit evil."
"Say what you will about it, I don't care. But, really Nale is much more of a man, don't you think? And being a member of the Linear Guild carries some… fringe benefits." She was uncomfortably close now, and Therkla felt the suggestive nudge of what could only be a forked tail. A sudden realization hit her.
"You - you're hitting on me!"
"Took you long enough, honey. C'mon, I'm up for anything. Nale's a great man, but sometimes, he can be such a prude…"
"I am very sorry but I do not have such feelings towards wom-"
"Okay, I get it. Too bad, but it's your loss." Sabine stood up, as if she was about to leave. "I mean, Nale does think you're hot, and I'm up for it. You could see your 'beloved', get a few hits against that slutty girlfriend of his… but you don't have to if you don't want to."
She bent over, her full lips uncomfortably close to Therkla's blunt, orcish ear. "And when I say I'm a shapeshifter, I mean it. You want it - or him - I've got it. I could be anyone… even that drippy brother of Nale's." She left on that note, and Therkla was glad for it. Her agile imagination had already set to work, and she wasn't sure what to do.