Ch. 1.0 PRINCE HRAERIK, THE MAGI ASSASSIN

Copyright by Brian Howard Seibert

 

CHAPTER ONE

1.0 PRINCE HRAERIK, THE MAGI ASSASSIN  (Circa 1014 AD)

 

(1014 AD)  Prince Hraerik sailed his Roman Dromon through the Pillars of Hercules into the Mediterranean Sea and immediately had his crew set up bright bronze Greek Fire tubes at the fore and aft of his ship.  The tubes had hoses that ran from them to below deck and not much more than that.  The Eastern Roman fire weapon was so feared by all that Hraerik had learned that just the sight of the bronze tubes was enough to keep away pirates and most Arab fleets.  Only the Romans wouldn’t be fooled by the ploy and the Prince had trade agreements and contracts with them.  The Prince used his vellum charts and new Cathayan compass to guide him from the western end of the Roman Sea, the Mediterranean, to the eastern Byzantine end of it and he had his men pack away the bronze tubes before entering the Aegean Sea and the Sea of Marmara, then the Bosporus and the Black Sea and finally the Sea of Azov.  He switched ships in Gardariki and took his merchant flagship back across the Black Sea to the Halys-Euphrates portage and met up with King Valdamar and Jarl Eirik in Baghdad.

“I’m afraid it’s back to Grand Prince Valdamar,” Valdy apologized when Hraerik had addressed him as king.  “I’ve just received news that my young half-brother Harald has proclaimed himself King of Denmark so, I have managed to lose both the English and Danish crowns in less than a year.”

“I’m sure it was Queen Gyritha that put him up to it,” the Prince consoled him.  “And my condolences on the loss of Sweyn.  How did it happen?”

And Hraerik, Valdy and Eirik sat tightly about a table in the Caliph’s banquet hall and discussed events while slaves brought them more wine.  They were half cut and in good spirits when they retired to their Hraes’ suite in the palace and Anika, Saleem, Saffron and Anise were waiting for them.  Prince Hraerik made a bee-line for Saleem and asked her to join him for some Champagne and Khavayar in his master suite.

“Sorry to Shanghai you,” the Prince apologized, using a Cathayan term he had picked up there, “but I know you were a bit of a witch in an earlier career.”  They had some Frankish sparkling wine and they could soon hear both Saffron and Anise moaning from Valdamar’s suite across the great room.

“You’ll have to do something about that boy of yours,” Saleem said, as she listened to the younger women.  “He’s too much for any one woman to handle.  Perhaps three.”

“He’s Sweyn’s boy,” Hraerik said sadly.  “Sounds like your girls are doing an admirable job.”

“My condolences on your grandson, Sweyn,” Saleem said, reaching across the table to hold his hand.  “They did an admirable job on King Sweyn as well, and I’m a grandmother now because of it.”

“Well, I hope they have their own internal gloves, ’cause I’ve yet to see a glove that will fit Valdy’s ‘Pink Monster’.  Unless you have monsters of your own in Baghdad.”

“Oh, we have monsters of own here in Baghdad,” Saleem assured him as she rubbed her yoni with her other hand and recollected her abduction and rape a generation earlier.  “Still,” she said, putting her head in her hand, “I hope they don’t get knocked up by Sweyn’s son now,” and she shook her head in her hand and gave Hraerik’s hand a squeeze.  Then she looked up, smiled, and asked, “I was a pharmacist once so, what drug do you need?”

“There is a drug made of the poison of an African blow fish,” Hraerik started, “that let’s one put people under so that they appear to be dead, and I need the antidote for it that wakes them up again.”

“The Zombie drug!” Saleem hissed.  “It is very hard to acquire and the antidote is even harder.  It is controlled by the Alchemists’ Guild.  They can’t control the Zombie drug because the blowfish is quite common off the Gold coast, but the antidote is of rare chemicals known only to the Guild and they control it quite closely, even within the Guild itself.  Without the antidote, the drug is just another poison that kills in high enough doses in minutes and in low doses in days.  And that is what it is commonly used for these days…murder.”

“I’ve heard it is being used as a sex drug as well,” Hraerik prodded.

“Really?” Saleem asked.  “Do you have some with you?”  But when Hraerik shook his head, she was disappointed and said, “I was hoping you’d show me something new tonight.”

“Oh, I’ll show you something new, if you’re willing,” and she perked up a bit, “but I was hoping to get some intel on the drug as a sex weapon.  I think a witch may have killed Sweyn with it.  And I think she saved herself with the antidote, but I don’t think she got it from the Guild.”

“I’ll check with some of my Baghdad contacts,” Saleem said as she poured them more wine.  “I’ll get you some of the drug, but I can only try to get the antidote.”

“The Christians’ Apostle Judas Iscariot used the drug to poison Lazarus,” Hraerik told her, “and their Lord Jesus used the antidote to raise Lazarus from the dead the next day.”

“That’s why I don’t follow religions,” Saleem said, as she began undressing the Prince.

“So you likely don’t want to hear how the drug was used at the Lord Christ’s crucifixion.”

“Not in the least,” Saleem said, pausing over a button.

“Then how about I show you the latest position that is popular in Mumba?”

“Now you have my attention,” Saleem said, as she resumed unbuttoning his pants.

The Prince decided to spend a week in Baghdad with his great grandson Valdamar and Jarl Eirik.  The Norwegian Jarl was a great help with Valdamar, having lost his father, Haakon, through evil machinations two decades earlier, and it was King Sweyn who had helped him through his troubling times with Olaf Tryggvason.  But now they learned that a new Olaf was causing trouble in Norway.  A Hraes’ trader had arrived late with slaves from Ireland and news that Jarl Sigurd ‘the Stout’ had died when the Danes lost the Battle of Clontarf in Dublin in the spring.  He also had news that a new Olaf also ‘the Stout’ was fomenting trouble in Norway.  Good news of a sort also arrived in Baghdad that Emperor Basil II had begun his war with Bulgaria and had just won the Battle of Thessalonica.  This was the war that King Sweyn was to have started against the Bulgars once he had added his conquered English forces to the Hraes’ legions that he had sent back to Kiev to prepare for the Bulgarian campaign.  When word arrived in Constantinople that Prince Sveinald ‘the Brave’, King Sweyn ‘Forkbeard’ of Denmark would not be leading his Hraes’ legions against Tzar Simeon of Bulgaria, Basil decided quickly to lead his Roman legions north instead.

Prince Valdamar had brought his son, Prince Ivaroslav, to Baghdad with him for training in trade, while other sons remained in Hraes’, training legions to be taken back to England in the fall.  Prince Hraerik doted over the young prince the whole week they were in the Caliphate together, but he warned Valdamar that he might have to postpone his invasion due to great floods he had seen in his dreams swamping England and killing thousands.  Crops would not be harvested and a great famine would overtake the land, which would be good for Hraes’ slavers, but bad for campaigning.  The Prince did point out to his younger scions that the English would be blaming the whole calamity on the Aesir scorn pole, the Unicorn, that Valdamar had left the English when he withdrew from Sandwich.  It had been a great curse put upon the Island of Britain and now the whole island was starting to pay for it.  And King Canute ‘the Great’s reputation as a powerful leader was being born as the flood waters broke.

“But don’t let this Aesir magic go to your head, King Canute,” Prince Hraerik warned his great grandson, “for the dreams that told me of this coming flood also indicated the cause as being a shift in weather from world-wide warming to a world-wide cooling cycle and that, in the foreseeable future, crop failures and famines will be an increasingly common occurrence.”

“Thank you for addressing me as King Canute,” Valdamar answered.  “It bodes well for me that someone as prescient as you should see fit to call me that.”

“It was a good choice,” Hraerik replied.  “Your grandfather, King Ivar, was called Ivar ‘the Boneless’ by the English behind his back only.  To his face they called him King Harde Knute and they feared and respected him.  In Denmark, Ivar had his coins minted with King Frodi’s visage on one side and his own King Harde Knute visage on the other because he wanted all to know that he was the grandson of the feared and respected King Frodi ‘the Peaceful’ Fridleifson of Jelling, but in York, he had his own visage struck on both sides of his coins, for there, he feared no one.  Valdamar is a new and eastern name that Count Vlad of Wallachia had Svein bless you with, but Canute is a name that the English will recognize and fear.”

At the end of the week, Saleem had a large vial of the Zombie drug ready for Hraerik, but only a small vial of the antidote.  “It was very hard to obtain,” she explained.  The Prince paid her well for her help and then showed her a new position popular in Frankia that Queen Emma had shown him on Wight.  The next day he sailed for India on a mission to execute an evil man who was yet to be born and would live two hundred years in the future.  Prince Hraerik had foreseen his own death in another hundred years so, if he had to kill the man in the future, he felt he might as well do it now.  He was a renowned prophet with the Alchemists’ Guild and his wife in India, Myia, was a polymath with the Guild, but the power they had in the University might not last and they needed the Aesir magic of the Guild’s Magis in order to kill this man in the future.  Now was quickly evolving to be the time to get the ‘hit’ done.  His wife was in India right now trying to get the exact same drugs through the Guild and the safe procedures for using them.  They weren’t even sure, at this point, how much of the drug they needed and exactly how it was to be used.  The only thing they knew for sure was that the man in the future had to be killed or a Turkic horde would conquer the world under his leadership.  And this sure intel had come to Hraerik in a dream from the ghost of a long dead witch, Princess Blaeja of York, whom he had focked over a century earlier, the first grandmother he had ever focked, and he had just spent the last week in Baghdad focking another grandmother while getting the drugs he needed to kill the man from the future that the first grandmother had told him about.  Things tended to get complicated after the first hundred years of living.  But this mission was tenuous at best and kept getting more complicated.

The Prince made a stop at Ashaval, in the province of Gujarat, and Hraerik met Rajan Rajan’s son there.  “I’m sorry,” Raj apologized.  “I waited in Baghdad for you but your traders said you were in the Newfoundland and wouldn’t be trading this year so, I led your fleet here with mine.”

“I know,” Hraerik replied.  “I planned on staying in the new western lands for a year, but shit happens.”  They were once more sitting on the balcony of King Ivar’s suite in the palace.  “My grandson, King Sweyn, conquered England and it took the English all of five weeks to poison him so, I rushed back from the west and here I am.”

The Prince told the Maharaja what had happened to Sweyn and then his son, Prince Valdamar, and Raj updated Hraerik on events in Gujarat.

“Things have been relatively quiet here,” Rajan assured him.  They talked for hours and then there was a gentle knock at the door and Raj let himself out as he let two young Jat princesses in.

After a week of trade in Ashaval, Prince Hraerik’s next stop was in the heavenly city of Mumba, in Maharashtra province.

“How’s spring trading so far?” Myia asked, hugging Hraerik warmly.   She was still living at her parents’ estate on the bay.  “I’ve gotten the drugs,” she whispered as she kissed him on the cheek.

“And the process?” Hraerik whispered back, not mentioning that he had gotten the drugs too.

“I have the procedure as well.”

Myia’s parents joined them in the great room and soon they were joined by their daughter, Kura, and Hraerik’s young son, Eyfur.  The Prince spent several days getting reacquainted with his many children in Mumba and Princess Mahara’s half dozen, but soon it was time to prepare for the future hit.

“Did you have any trouble getting the drugs?” he asked as they laid in bed together.

“No,” Myia lied.  “I used my connections at the Chemists’ Guild and all went smoothly.  Have you kept in touch with Princess Blaeja’s spirit,” she whispered as though Blaeja might hear.

“She keeps in touch with me,” Hraerik answered, “by sending me dreams.”  He saw where her mind was running and said, “Nothing sexual.  Deadly floods in England, my grandson, Sweyn, dying…that sort of thing.”

“Sorry,” she stammered.  “She was your lover once.”

“A hundred years ago!” Hraerik said.  “Should we be doing this here, in your home like this?  I’ve perused the process and it seems quite dangerous.”

“Only for us,” Myia reassured him.  “If I die, I want to die in the house I grew up in.  That our children are growing up in.”

“It’s really that dangerous?” he asked.  “I read the warnings, but often they’re exaggerated for safety reasons.”

“The drug is banned from all Guild Universities,” Myia said, “because a number of students and even professors have died from it.”

“Why would students and doctors be using it at the University?”

“It can be used as a sex drug,” Myia whispered.  “Couples take it and it is so powerful, they can experience their partner’s orgasms.  They die and enter their partner’s mind just as they’re coming and they experience their orgasm and then the antidote revives them.  It is said to be a mind blowing experience.  But if you don’t get the antidote in time, you are dead.”

“Have you ever tried it?”

“No,” Myia lied again.  “The story’s just been going around the University for years.  But for what we’re going to be using it for, it is even more dangerous.  We will both be leaving our bodies.  Administering each other the antidote will be tricky.”

“Perhaps we should get your parents to help administer it.”

“We’ll be focking, silly.  I don’t want them watching.”

“It’s just sex.  People see it all the time.”

“You’re so Aesir!”

“We should get Mahara to help,” Hraerik said.  “We’ve had sex with her together already.”

“She’s breastfeeding your latest baby right now.  Besides, how will she help with your part?  You have to come inside me and you’ve never failed at that.  We’ll be fine.  Call your princess!”

“I’ll call her,” Hraerik said, “but then we must prepare and I’ll sleep and she’ll come through me in a dream.”

So they poured out small vials of the Zombie drug and the antidote in the amounts dictated by the ancient Brahman procedure they were to follow written in Sanskrit.  There were other processes, but for what they wanted to accomplish, there was only the last and most dangerous procedure that was to be employed.  Hraerik swallowed his dose of antidote right away.  It would be in his system and he would be injecting it into Myia via his seminal fluid.  It was the most direct and fastest acting method for the time.  Myia followed her instructions and put a sealing gloss on her lips and then applied the antidote as a gel over her sealed lips.  She had to keep her lips pursed so as not to lose her gel.  The procedure called for her to orally ingest the Puffer Fish drug first and take care to avoid her lip gel, then Hraerik was to ingest his drug and they were to have sex for fifteen minutes, and they both looked at the water clock on the wall, and then Myia would die and Hraerik had to come within minutes and inject the antidote to revive Myia, then he would die and the revived Myia would kiss him to administer his antidote, but kissing wasn’t as direct and she had to keep it up until Hraerik resumed breathing.  Direct injection was more effective, but they were only equipped to flow one way.

Hraerik and Myia got into bed together and put their doses of the Puffer Fish drug on the headboard and Myia watched as Hraerik drifted off into a deep sleep.  She marvelled at his self-control as he slept and began dreaming.  The sexual precision required by the Brahman procedure seemed rigorous and it was for the male, but this was Aesir/Vanir/Brahman witchcraft and was intended for use by witches and warlocks who trained extensively in sexual control techniques, but Hraerik was an Aesir warrior and they trained in techniques as well.  True warriors were expected to be sexually aroused by battle, to experience true frenzy, to be the berserker and the euphoria of bloodletting propelled them beyond their physical limitations to a higher level, to victory, and when victory was attained they were trained to bend the vanquished over their shields and make the vanquished theirs.  And they were required to flow into each and every captive they took, be they warrior or shield maiden, and this took rigorous sexual control that could even surpass the precision of warlocks.  It was the Aesir way.  The Vanir way.  The Brahman way.  Witchcraft and warlocks and warriors and witches and shield maidens were all on the battlefields and the gods were watching and the Valkyries were taking the dead.  It was the warriors’ way.

Princess Blaeja came to Hraerik as he dreamed and she awakened him and he told Myia to take her dose of the drug.  Myia sucked it back and then laid him back upon the bed and began to suck on his lingam to get it wet and hard.  After a few minutes of this, Hraerik was ready and he took back his vial and swallowed his dose.  Instantly he got harder and larger and he laid Myia back and he entered her as the spirit of Blaeja watched with lust.  Hraerik began thrusting deeply into Myia and as he sped up she wrapped her legs around his buttocks to control his thrusts.  They did this for a few minutes and when Myia began to come, Hraerik entered her mind and he could feel her womanly orgasms and they were quite different from the male sensations he was used to.  They were gentler and often and were building slowly but then Hraerik sensed that Myia’s mind was troubled.  Princess Blaeja was about to guide the two off to Cathay but they were suddenly gone.  Myia had left momentarily and Hraerik had followed her and Blaeja called them back and Myia returned to her, but Hraerik had followed a memory that had gained his undivided attention.

An old professor at the University, one of Myia’s gurus, had brought her the Puffer Fish drug and antidote, but only on the condition that they have sex and Hraerik was being focked by this man and he was not enjoying it, as, apparently, Myia had not.  He was old and sweating and bald and fat and was thrusting inside her and, as he came, Hraerik entered his mind and followed his memory and he was now focking one of the professor’s young students and she was very young and fine and Hraerik felt that if he focked her he would steal this fine memory from the prick who had taken his wife, so he did just that and took some time with the memory and he exploded inside the young girl and he flowed and robbed the professor of his exquisite memory.  The young student had worked hard for her ‘A’ and it was the old man’s most magnificent memory and Hraerik took it in revenge.  But as he was leaving the professor’s mind and returning to Myia’s, the old instructor threw some shade at him and gave him another memory that Hraerik tried to shake off but couldn’t.  It was with him but he couldn’t experience it yet.  He had to get back.  And when he got back, both Blaeja and Myia were in a panic and Hraerik told them that he had gotten lost.

Princess Blaeja had to make up time and she whisked the spirits of the couple, who were still busy focking, off to Cathay and they entered a palace master suite and in the kingly bed slept an old khan.  He was Chinese, but not Chinese, more Turkic, and Hraerik realized he was the leader of the horde he had seen conquer the world.  Myia was looking at a far corner of the room where there was a small cot and on it a young tiny Chinese princess slept fitfully.  Myia could see she was sick and could sense she was dying.  She was barely more than a child yet had so little time left and Myia was saddened by it.  Blaeja directed Myia into the girl to find some strength in her then she returned to Hraerik and directed him into the Khan to wake him and control him.  The khan began tossing and turning.  Hraerik felt that he was hard, that he had been dreaming of a conquered queen that he had raped and enjoyed and impregnated and had added to his concubine harem.  He had harems all over his conquered lands and he had forced himself upon each and every royal in his harems, for he only had royals.  It helped that the khan was ready to go and Hraerik thought it would be easy.

When Myia had entered the girl, she knew right away that she was in rough shape.  There was a jaundice flowing through the girls veins and she sensed a steel contraption of some sort in her honey well and it wasn’t the kind of metal that could stay long inside a human body without rusting and causing infection.  Why hadn’t she taken the thing out and then she followed one of the girl’s memories.  She was a young Chinese princess and she had been left for the khan, for the rapist khan, and the metal contraption was a trap of some sort.  She had kept it hidden within her because it was the reason she had been left there in the palace when the conquering army drove the Chinese host out.  The princess was in such a state that Myia could not do much with her.

Hraerik roused the khan out of sleep and he opened his eyes and could see that the young pretty princess in the corner had seemed to recover somewhat and Hraerik got him to get up out of bed and walk naked toward her.  The khan approached her bed and looked upon her with lust and he tore back her sheets and uncovered her naked young body and he saw she was just a girl and Hraerik tried to get him to mount her but he wouldn’t.  Hraerik forced up memories of him sleeping inside young Sinead years earlier and of Sinead having sex with him but, still, as ready to go as his erect penis was, the khan would not budge.  He may have forced himself upon the women he conquered, raped the princesses he captured, but he did not fock children.  He was no paedophile.  Hraerik tried to control the khan, but, he too was a warrior, and had supreme self-control.  The khan turned about and started to return to his bed.  Then both he and Hraerik heard a noise behind them and they turned around and it was a naked Princess Blaeja standing starkly before them.

Myia had not been able to get the princess up, so the spirit of Blaeja entered the girl to help and they got the girl up and Blaeja took over her form and looks.  But this Blaeja was not the grandmother Blaeja that Hraerik had focked, but the young Princess Blaeja that his son, Helgi ‘Arrow Odd’ Bjorn Ironside, had focked and she was exquisite.  Even Hraerik’s spirit was hard now.  The khan advanced once more and he forced Blaeja to the cot and he got atop her and entered her and he began thrusting gently at first and as she grew wet, then more deeply.  Hraerik even got caught up in the lust of it all as young Princess Blaeja began moaning exotically, but she did this only because the young Chinese girl could not bear the weight of the khan and her life had left her body.  Still, the khan focked on and he came within the corpse and Hraerik came within the spirit of young Blaeja and even the Anglish princess was coming hard when it happened.

Myia had been trying to keep the spirit of the young Chinese princess within her body but she left and took Myia with her just as the rusty trap went off and a tarnished blade sprang out of it and slashed into the khan’s lingam and bit deeply into it.  The device had been designed to fully cut the cock off near the end and the sudden massive blood loss was supposed to be intense enough to cause loss of consciousness and the khan was supposed to bleed out while the young princess whispered the curses of her people into his dying ear.  But the trap had rusted and sprang with only enough force to almost cut the tip off and there was little blood loss.  But it also cut the princess a bit and the jaundiced blood from her yoni entered the blood within the khan’s lingam and her deadly infection was passed on to him.  He didn’t know it, of course, and the trap going off brought sudden pain into the orgasm both he and Hraerik were enjoying and young Princess Blaeja was still moaning in extasy when the khan and Hraerik began screaming in pain.

Hraerik’s spirit flew out of the khan and returned to his bed in Mumba just in time to realize that Myia had already died from the drug and though he was still focking her, had been focking her the whole time their spirits had been gone, it was imperative that he come within her now to inject the antidote into her.  He began thrusting hard and fast but he could not come.  Then he realized that he had come within the professor’s young girl and he had flowed again within young Princess Blaeja and he just didn’t have any more to flow.  He kept trying hard until the poison overcame him too and he collapsed dying on top of the dead Myia.

Princess Blaeja realized that both Myia and Hraerik’s spirits had been torn away suddenly but she stayed with the khan and hoped he would slowly bleed out as he tried to get free of the trap, but the khan didn’t move.  He thought the trap had just half sprung closed and he didn’t want to try pulling himself free and have it go off all the way and cut his cock off completely.  So he stayed inside the dead princess all the early hours of the morning and the jaundice that was in the dead body of the princess fled her corpse and entered his warm and living carcase.  In the morning, one of his captive royals was pushed into the room with instructions to wake the khan by riding his cock to his great satisfaction or she would lose her life and when she entered the room and saw the khan flailing away atop the little Chinese princess, she screamed and retainers rushed into the room to help their khan.

The hours and days that followed passed in seconds as the spirit of Princess Blaeja, the grandmotherly one, watched the khan get aid and medical attention and then refuse medical attention when the jaundice set into his lingam and the healers wanted to remove it.  Finally, after days of excruciating pain, the khan allowed the doctors to cut his cock off, but it was too late.  The jaundice had spread into his lower abdomen and he was back in excruciating pain and the doctors gave him days to live.  The khan gathered his sons and warriors about him and he had each of them swear that he would murder fifty of the Chinese clan before the khan died.  Fifty thousand warriors filed past him and swore this for themselves and their subordinates and two and a half million Chinese people were murdered within days and the khan left instructions on his secret burial, for he had seen witches about the night he had focked the Chinese princess to death, and he did not want witches haunting his great burial mausoleum.  The murder of the Chinese people continued long after the khan was dead, but Blaeja couldn’t stay to follow the burial procession to know where the miscreant khan could be found resting.  She had to hurry back to her prince in Mumba.

When Blaeja got back to their bedroom in Mumba, Myia was already dead and Hraerik was dying atop her.  He was just pitching forward when Blaeja used all the strength she could muster, which amounted to about one flap of a butterfly’s wings, and she directed Hraerik’s fall so that his lips landed on Myia’s in what could be called one last kiss, but it was the kiss of death for Myia and a kiss of life for Hraerik, for when their lips touched the gel antidote went onto the thickening tongue of the Prince and a minute later a sudden breath came to his chest and he was soon heaving and gasping in air.  He saw Myia dead beneath him and instinctively started blowing air into her, but to no avail, although it did introduce more of the antidote into his system.  He realized that she was gone and he remembered that it was his fault.  He was going to get Mahara and her parents, but he realized there was nothing to be done so, he crawled into bed with his wife and he hugged her body and he slept with her one last time.

Princess Blaeja came to him in a dream, not as the young Princess Blaeja, nor as the grandmotherly Princess Blaeja he had known, but as the beautiful yet wise Princess Blaeja that she liked to picture herself as and she told Hraerik that she was as much to blame for Myia’s death as he was, for she, too, had been caught up in the sex she was having with Hraerik and she had totally lost all thought of the khan or the princess or Myia, so swept up was she by the orgasm they were having together.  “If I could go back in time and change things, and I can,” she said, “I’d do it, but I may not be able to kill the khan again.”  She told Hraerik how close the khan had come to surviving, but she also told him how much excruciating pain the khan had been in, both before and after they cut his lingam off.  “I’m going to go back and see if I can find out where they buried him,” Blaeja said, “so I can torment his soul for all the people world-wide he has murdered.  And I’ll assess our chances of saving Myia and still killing the khan and we may be able to try a do-over if you wish.  I’ll be back tomorrow night in a dream.  Don’t let anyone corrupt your wife’s body until I get back,” and Blaeja left for Mongolia.

Hraerik hugged Myia’s body and went back to sleep with her.  He had a dream that had Myia’s old professor in it and, at first, he thought it was the shade that the professor had thrown at him, but it wasn’t.  It was a continuation of Hraerik’s spirit when it was in Myia and she was being focked by the professor to get the drug and antidote as she had agreed upon.  Once the old guru had a taste of sweet Myia, he couldn’t let go of her.  He stalked her at the Guild University and every once in a while he would catch her alone somewhere and he would rape her and Hraerik still had those memories with him and he could see the old man’s sweat and smell his stink and feel his thrust as he penetrated her and he counted eleven times that he had raped her after their deal had been done with and there was nothing she could do about it.  It was India and it was the Brahman way.  Royals raped their subjects, upper castes raped the lower castes and professors raped their students.  Only power stopped rapes from happening, but Myia hadn’t told Hraerik what had been happening to her.  She wanted to stop the evil khan so badly that she sucked it up and took the punishment.  She needed the drug to kill the khan and she got the drug to kill the khan and she was prepared to be raped to kill the khan and she was prepared to die to kill the khan and she died killing the khan.  He knew she had no regrets about killing the khan and that she would die again to kill the khan.  Hraerik hoped that Blaeja would come back and tell him there could be no do-over, because if she came back and offered him one that had the slightest chance of the khan surviving, he would have to tell her that Myia is fine with things as they are.

Hraerik hugged Myia’s body and kissed her, then went back to sleep with her.  He had another dream that had Myia’s old professor in it and, this time, it was the dream with the shade that the professor had thrown at him.  He had stolen the professor’s favourite memory so Myia’s guru returned the favour.  Hraerik had swept Myia off her feet in a chance meeting and had fallen in love with her because she knew about cosmology and she cared about the abstract things that concerned Hraerik.  How the Universe was created.  How warming and cooling cycles were repeated.  How the underwater breathers of Gujarat and Mumba competed.  In the dream, the professor is at the Guild University coaching Myia on the likes and dislikes of a certain Aesir prince and is showing her how to casually meet this prince and is telling her how she has been selected to make this prince happy because he is a very important prophet for the Guild.  He even tells her that the prince is over a hundred years old, but she must show surprise at this if he ever tells her it.  And she did, Hraerik realized.

When Princess Blaeja, the middle Princess Blaeja returned she told Hraerik that she couldn’t find the khan’s howe.  But she did find the grave of the young Chinese princess.  The khan had ordered her body cut up and fed to swine, but her people soon killed all the pigs in that sty and they buried them all in a huge grave with a magnificent marker that was written in a Chinese form that her people would know, but the khan’s people wouldn’t.  And they visit her grave and cry about all the millions of their people that died stopping the khan.  “I met the spirit of the young princess there,” Blaeja told him, “and I apologized to her for using her in our ‘hit’ on the khan.  Do you know what she told me?”

“I think I could guess, but tell me.”

“She said that her own people had set up the execution and thanked us for making sure it finally worked.  She said her people knew the consequences of their action, but also had learned from their own prophets how many lives would be lost if he was to live.  She told me to thank you and Myia for your sacrifices.  I didn’t tell her that Myia died.”

“You could have,” Hraerik replied.  “I don’t think Myia would want any do-overs if there were the slightest chance the khan would survive.”

“I studied it,” the spirit of Princess Blaeja said.  “The risks kept getting worse the more scenarios I ran.”

“I thought as much,” Hraerik said.

“Do you mind if I ask you something?” Blaeja said.

“Go ahead.”

“Would you mind, and I realize this is too soon to ask and I apologize for asking, but, if I ever get the chance to have sex with you like we had with the khan and the princess, is it okay if I jump at the chance?”

“Please do!” Hraerik answered.  “As long as it is for a good cause.  Or even a cause that is a little on the shady side.”

“That was the best sex I’ve ever had in my life and I’m no longer alive!”

“I know!  That was the best sex I’ve had in my life and I’ve been focking for almost two hundred years!  Whatever got into to you?”

“Got into me?” Blaeja asked.  “Why you got into me, that’s whatever!  And thank you so much for getting into me,” and then she was gone.

Prince Hraerik buried his wife, Myia, in her family’s plot in their estate and he consoled his other wives and his children and he blessed his Indian family with many gifts and songs and stories.  He spent the rest of summer sailing between the City of Seven Islands, Mumba, and the first city of the Jats, Ashaval, and spent time with his children of both cities and with the Ashaval children of his son, Ivar.  Soon the summer was waning and in his last two weeks in Mumba, he spent extra time with his wife, Mahara, because she wanted yet another baby.  “I may not be coming to India every summer,” he warned her, but she replied,  “Our having a new baby together every second year is almost as great.  And I shall try to cover for Myia as your Aesir wife as well as your Hindu wife.  At least until I can find you a proper Aesir wife.”

Prince Hraerik sailed back north and spent a week in Gujarat, with Rajan’s son, Rajan, and one day he put a bottle of clear liquid in front of the Maharaja and he asked him for a favour.  “Do you know what this is?”

Rajan answered, “Is it sparkling wine?”

“It’s Irish liquor,” Hraerik told him.  “The Irish call it ‘sunshine in a bottle’ because, no matter what the weather, if you drink enough of the stuff, it will always be sunny.  If I gave you gold and the name of a professor at the Guild University in Mumba, do you think you can cut his cock off and put it in this bottle for me?  The liquor will keep it fresh and you can send it to me.  I’ll recognise his cock because he has focked me with it.  But it has to be done in a manner that the Guild can never trace to me.  Can you get this done for me?”

“My father had just such a man who can do this,” Raj answered.  “I shall get him on it as soon as you leave.  No gold required.  You are still the Prince, the prince who saved Mumba and then Ashaval.  A good half of all Jats owe their lives to you, but then again, a good quarter of the Jats are probably sprung from you and King Ivar’s line.  I shall send the bottle to Tmutorokan before winter.”