The Power of the Pencil
Written by Rjjt456 :: [Saturday, 14 October 2023 16:05] Last updated by :: [Tuesday, 31 October 2023 08:53]
This story was a collaboration project between me (Rjjt456) and WriterAngel.
Without the inputs, encouragement, passion, and massive editing effort of my co-writer, this story wouldn’t have been ready in time!
Ryder ambled into the classroom, sneakers squeaking softly against the polished tile floor as his momentum came to a sudden, unceremonious stop just inside the door. Even after all these weeks, the sight of her stopped him dead in his tracks. His mouth instantly went dry.
She sat at her desk, talking to a friend, pencil twirling between two slim, scarlet-polished fingers. Ever since the day they had properly spoken with each other in class, Ryder had been a wreck of emotions around her. Even her name seemed to tangle his tongue, tumbling from his lips much as her distinctive ginger curls cascaded in a jumble over her slender shoulders. That lush mane poured down her back like ringlets of liquid fire, causing a lump of longing to lodge itself firmly into his throat. Then, she turned…
Expressive eyes, irises cobalt like the depths of the ocean ringing shrinking pupils, languidly worked their way across the room, as if in slow motion. When her gaze finally met his, it was as if an electric circuit had been completed, the resulting surge wobbling his locked knees. Before he could breathe, his lips curled upward, involuntarily returning the bright smile that formed under those luminous eyes.
Lana was his muse, his secret crush, the subject of many a sketch hidden away beneath the mattress in his bedroom. Her long red hair, slender body, and expressive eyes had drawn him in long ago and never let go.
He felt a familiar twinge of anticipation mixed with anxiety as he let go of that thought. Classrooms had always been a refuge and a battlefield for him, a space where his introverted nature both thrived and was put to the test. Art History, in particular, was a prime example of this.
The room was already abuzz with students. Some were huddled in groups, laughter and chatter filling the air in the middle and back rows of the room, while others, like Ryder, stood slightly apart, finding solace in solitude. The pungent scent of whiteboard markers mingled with a subtle undercurrent of teenage perfume and fruit-flavored chewing gum.
"Hey, Ryder!" called out a voice from behind him, snapping him out of his reverie. "Dude, daydreaming again? Get a move on! Nobody can get to class with you hogging the doorway like that!"
Sheepishly, Ryder moved to the side. "O-oh! Sorry." he stammered apologetically, quickly forcing his shaky legs into a zombie-like forward lurch until he could collapse in his seat. His eyes quickly returned to Lana, who was rising from her desk, her short tartan skirt showing off tanned, toned legs.
Jake, one of the few friends in whom he had confided his feelings about Lana, laughed from the desk next to his. It was a hearty, full-throated sound. "Man, you've got it bad! You should just go and talk to Lana!"
Before Ryder could protest, Lana sauntered over, her eyes twinkling playfully. "Talk to me about what?" she asked, her voice lilting and melodic.
Ryder gulped, searching for words, thankful that they came together reasonably well. "I… uh… was just wondering what you were gonna do about the field trip. The one to the art museum?"
“Oh yeah? What other field trip is there?” She seemed amused by Ryder’s nervousness.
“T-true…” Ryder stammered. Why could he never think straight around this girl? If he was ever going to ask her out, he would definitely need full control of his tongue! “I was just—”
She leaned in, sanguine lips curling into a mischievous grin. "Hoping we get paired together?"
Jake snickered, giving Ryder a friendly nudge before whispering, "See? She's onto you!"
Ryder's face turned a shade redder—if that was even possible. "I just think... you know... you have a good eye for art," he managed, cursing himself internally for the tremor in his voice.
Lana laughed, the sound as melodic as it was infectious. "Why, thank you, Ryder! And you have a talent for creating it. I still remember that sketch you did of that flower at the beginning of the semester. It was really fantastic."
Jake erupted into another fit of laughter, drawing a questioning gaze from the pretty redhead.
Trying to recover from the unexpected compliment, Ryder straightened, clearing his throat. "So, the museum. Excited?"
"Definitely!" Lana responded, her voice full of youthful exuberance. "Especially if you get your wish…” She gave him a long lashed wink before turning on her heel and heading back to her desk.
It was the day of the field trip—the last one of senior year. Ryder fidgeted in his seat, trying to find the right balance between appearing nonchalant and the burgeoning enthusiasm he felt about the upcoming trip to the museum. The murmur of excited students filled the room, everyone eagerly discussing either the potential art pieces they would see or, in many cases, the upcoming football game.
Mrs. Harlow, the art history teacher, sported her usual silver-rimmed glasses and array of colorful scarves. She wove her way to the front of the room, then clapped her hands to get everyone's attention. "Alright, class!" she began, her voice carrying a hint of excitement. "I've decided to make this field trip a little more interactive. Instead of me guiding you through all the hallways and talking your ear off, you'll be paired up, and together, you'll discuss, critique, and document the artistic style of your assigned painting or sculpture."
A chorus of groans and cheers filled the room. Ryder's heart rate ticked up a notch. Who would he be paired with? He cast a covert glance at Lana, hoping against hope.
His best friend, Jake, leaned over, whispering conspiratorially, "Lemme guess, still hoping for Lana?"
Ryder shot him a faux glare. "Dude! Could you be any louder?"
Jake grinned unabashedly. "Hey, I'm just sayin’. Maybe today's your lucky day."
Mrs. Harlow began reading out the pairs. Each name was met with varying degrees of delight or dismay. The tension in the room was palpable, like the air before a thunderstorm.
"And... Ryder, you'll be paired with... Lana," Mrs. Harlow announced, ticking off the final names on her list.
Ryder's heart skipped several beats, and he blinked rapidly, trying to process his unbelievable luck. Lana bounded into place before him a moment later, ginger curls bouncing, a twinkle in her luminous eyes. “Looks like you got your wish, art buddy! Ready to feast your eyes on some of the most amazing artwork in the city?”
Jake coughed conspicuously, poorly hiding a chuckle. "Oh, he's ready to feast his eyes on something alright. And I’m pretty sure it resides somewhere on your—"
“Let’s go get our assignment from Mrs. Harlow…” Ryder cut his friend off, stepping between his crush and his friend. The last thing he needed was another embarrassing moment in front of Lana, courtesy of his overly chatty friend.
Lana laughed, the sound like wind chimes in a summer breeze. "I’m kinda glad we were paired up together."
Ryder blinked again. “You’re… glad?”
“Well, yeah,” Lana said, a sly little smirk tugging at her lips. “Why wouldn’t I be? Paired up with one of the most talented artists in class.”
Had Ryder heard that right? One of the most talented artists? Was she just teasing him or did she actually think that? Did she really appreciate his work or was she just teasing him? Should he clarify? No! Of course not. If it were a joke, he would never be able to live it down.
The class began to disperse, forming groups and discussing logistics. Jake nudged Ryder, whispering, "This is your moment, man. Don't mess it up."
Ryder rolled his eyes but couldn't suppress a grin. "Thanks for the vote of confidence."
Jake gave him a two-fingered salute. "Anytime."
As they wove through the museum, approaching their assigned painting, Ryder and Lana saw a uniformed man turning off the alarm system. A cart was pushed up against the wall nearby.
“What are you doing with that?” Lana asked the man.
“Oh, sorry, but I’m supposed to take this away for restoration and maintenance.” The man said, as he grabbed the frames on the side of the painting and started to lift it from where it hung.
The back of the frame snagged on the hooks, however, throwing him off balance. The museum worker began to sway backwards, surprised by the sudden weight when it came free. Acting quickly, Ryder ran over to help before the man toppled over with the painting.
“You alright?” Ryder asked, incredulous at the man’s handling of the painting.
“Yeah, I was just surprised, that’s all.”
As they maneuvered the painting onto the cart, they failed to notice that something had fallen from behind the painting and hit the floor.
As the man moved away, Ryder finally looked down and noticed it, picking it up. It appeared to be a notebook, its pages blank, aside from an inscription inside the cover. Its cover was unusually ornate, leather with gold leaf. Inside, it read: “Within these pages, reality shall be as it is in the eye of the beholder.” Instantly, the inscription sparked his curiosity, though he wasn’t quite sure what it meant.
“Hey, is this yours?” Ryder asked the worker.
The man looked back, squinting at it.
“No,” he said as he shook his head. “I don’t recognize it. Maybe someone bought it in the giftshop and dropped it? It’s not mine, so I’d say it’s yours if you want it…”
“Maybe you should keep it?” Lana suggested. “You know—for your sketches.”
Ryder considered for a moment, then decided that Lana’s suggestion was a good one. He stuffed the journal into his backpack to examine more later.
“Do you mind if we follow you to the back room?” Lana asked the maintenance worker with a flutter of her lashes. “We have a class project to write a report on this particular painting, so we would really appreciate it if we could have a few minutes to really give it a closer look.”
“Well, I’m not supposed to, but since you’re asking all nice and your boyfriend here helped me with the painting, I guess it’s okay,” he said, returning Lana’s hopeful smile.
Ryder was about to protest the remark but the worker had already turned around to show them the way. They followed him to the back, and the two students began to examine the painting.
“So… it’s about the Trojan War or something, right?” Lana asked uncertainly, eyes scanning the bold brushstrokes of the 18th century painting depicting a young man with three women standing in front of him, with a golden apple in his hand.
“Before the Trojan War, actually,” said Ryder, remembering the Iliad from World Literature last semester. “This is showing Paris’ choice.”
“His choice?” Lana asked, tucking an errant lock of ginger curls behind her ear as they leaned over the painting.
“Yes, Paris was tasked by Zeus to choose which goddess was prettiest: Hera, Athena, or Aphrodite.” Ryder grinned as he remembered the passage. “They tried to bribe him. Hera offered to make him king of the known world. Athena offered him wisdom in battle. Aphrodite offered him the hand of the prettiest woman alive.”
“Really?!” Lana asked, clearly intrigued as she cast an inquisitive glance in Ryder’s direction. “Which would you have chosen?”
Ryder considered how to respond. He knew his true answer immediately. He would have chosen the same as Paris—the prettiest woman alive. But should he tell that to Lana? How would she react?
“Well, I don’t know… It’s kind of a tough decision, don’t you think?” Ryder asked, attempting to buy time to think.
“Well, I don’t know. I guess it depends on your priorities…” Lana answered cryptically, still gazing intently at him.
Ryder searched her delicate features for a hint as to what she wanted to hear, but he couldn’t tell what she was thinking. Did she want a man with wealth and power? What woman didn’t? Would she want a warrior? Hmmm… she had dated the quarterback of the football team last year. Was that the modern equivalent of battle? Was that what she liked? Ryder considered the question, but ultimately decided against that as her preference. The two of them had only had one date as far as Ryder knew, and Lana hadn’t gone for any other athletes, though he was sure she could have had she wanted to. So back to wealth and power? Or should he choose beauty…
Ryder agonized over the choice for a moment longer before finally dropping his shoulders. He was going to go with his heart.
“I guess… I would go with…” Ryder swallowed, watching closely for her reaction. “...the prettiest girl alive?”
Lana flinched, clearly surprised. She regarded him with curiosity. “Well, I can see why you wouldn’t have taken Athena’s offer. Who wants battle at all, right? No need to be good at something like that if you don’t intend to fight. But king of the known world? You would really rather have the prettiest woman alive than all that power and wealth and stuff?” Lana asked, her eyes looming large as they remained fixed firmly on his.
Ryder fought the blush that threatened to color his cheeks once again. “Well, I guess I’m just a romantic at heart. I’d much rather have the girl of my dreams. It’s not even a contest, really.”
“Not even a contest, huh?” Lana grinned, her eyes softening as they regarded him. “You are a romantic, aren’t you?” Then, her eyes narrowed. “Or you just have a Helen of Troy in mind that’s hot as fuck.”
“Well, I guess I do.” Ryder admitted, unable to look her in the eye. “I mean, why do you think I wanted to be your partner today?” The question came out before he had the presence of mind to stop it.
Lana laughed. “Because you were in awe of my powerful and amazing brain? You want to coast in the wake of my titanic academic prowess? Take advantage of my keen intuition in all matters of art history?” she joked.
Ryder chuckled nervously, then his mouth moved of its own accord once again. “Well, not that you’re not smart or anything, but I really just wanted exactly what Paris wanted. To be with the prettiest girl in the world.”
Lana’s smile abruptly fell. Her full lips slightly parted in surprise, her beautiful blue eyes going wide.
Ryder hesitated. Was it too much? Of course it was too much! What had he been thinking?! That was the problem. He hadn’t been thinking. He’d just let his mouth run, and this was where it had gotten him. It was how he really felt, but he definitely shouldn’t have told her. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid! There went any chance he had of getting her to go out with him. Right out the window. He had laid it on way too thick. There’s no way she would believe that’s how he really felt.
Lana quickly recovered from her surprise, gathering herself, her mouth quirking into an uncertain smile. “Yeah, right. Ha ha. Very funny. I mean, I know I’m not ugly or anything, but there’s no way I’m even close to the prettiest girl in the world. Besides, I’ve seen those sketches you did of those superhero girls. How sexy they were. Pretty sure you would want to end up with someone that looked a lot more like them. Big boobs. Killer abs. Legs that won’t quit. You know the type. You draw them like that for God’s sake.”
Ryder shook his head emphatically before capturing her questioning gaze with absolute certainty filling his eyes. “If I had the choice of going out with you or going out with any other woman in the world—even any of the actors that play superheroes—I would choose you over them in a heartbeat.”
Lana continued to stare at him, her smile fading once again. It looked as if she were attempting to gauge his honesty. Her mouth opened, then shut, then opened once again before she finally spoke, her words coming out softly, barely above a whisper. “You’re just flattering me, aren’t you? Trying to get a date or whatever…”
“Well…” Ryder began, swallowing nervously. He knew this was his chance to make an impression on her, and he really didn’t want to blow it. “It’s not just flattery. If you only knew what I—” he cut himself off abruptly. He really didn’t need to tell her about all the sketches he’d drawn of her. Especially not the ones where he’d let his imagination run wild…
“If I only knew what you… what?” she asked, a strange look glimmering in her eyes.
Shit. Ryder had said too much. He wasn’t going to be able to wriggle his way out of this now. He sighed. “If you only knew what I drew at night.”
Lana cocked her head to the side. “You mean you’re drawing, like, naked pictures of me or something?”
Ryder’s eyes went wide, his hands shooting out in protest. “No! No! Nothing like that! More like portraits. And, well…” He sucked in a breath, steeling himself against her probable reaction as his gaze found his feet. “Maybe one or two of you in a superhero costume?” He grimaced as he finished the statement, scratching at the back of his head before risking a brief glance into her eyes.
Lana’s eyes looked strangely glassy, filled with an emotion that Ryder couldn’t readily identify. “So let me get this straight. You’re home at night. You decide to draw something. And out of all the women in the world—and in comic books and movies and whatever—you draw pictures of me… in a superhero costume?”
Ryder couldn’t fight his blush anymore. His cheeks lit up as if he had stuffed them with a mouthful of glowing red Christmas lights. His eyes dropped to his feet once again. “Yeah…” he said in a barely audible whisper.
Ryder was nearly certain she was going to laugh in his face. But she didn’t. Instead, the pair stood in silence for a moment. Then, he felt slender fingers wrap around his wrist and tug him toward the door. He looked up to see Lana opening the door back to the public part of the museum. “Come on, dufus. Let’s get back to the main group.”
“But don’t we need to study the painting a little more?” Ryder asked.
“Nope,” she said, not even glancing back at him.
“But our report…!” he protested.
“...will get done later. It’s not due until tomorrow,” she continued, still not looking back at him.
Ryder followed her wordlessly until they arrived back at the main group, his heart sinking. She was clearly upset with him. Shit. She must think he was some kind of freak. Or worse—some sort of pervy emo art kid. So much for his chance of persuading her to go out with him. Stupid! Why had he told her all of that?! Everyone knows you never tell a girl stuff like that. You act cool. And indifferent. And… and… cool.
It started raining hard on the way back to the school. Most of their classmates seemed to be in good spirits, but Ryder had a suspicion that it might have been because the trip was finally over. He really did wonder sometimes why people took this class if they didn’t intend to invest time in it. His own mood was far darker after blowing what would likely be his only chance with Lana.
As Ryder stewed, he felt a flick on his ear. Turning, he unexpectedly found himself face to face with Lana, the tip of their noses only inches from connecting.
Ryder, startled, nearly jolted out of his seat. A sly smile tugged at Lana’s lips at his reaction.
“So, I think I’ve come up with a solution to our little ‘the painting was under maintenance so we didn’t have time to properly study it’ problem.” Lana said, using air quotes for emphasis.
“Yeah?” Ryder uttered as he wriggled back into his seat, unable to help but notice the floral scent of her hair. “What did you come up with?”
Lana smiled as she sat across from him, the waning afternoon light streaming through the window to highlight her figure in an amber silhouette.
“You and I go straight to the library when we get back. Do some research on the painting. That way, Mrs. Harlow won’t have to know we didn’t really study the painting as much as we were supposed to!”
It wasn’t a bad plan, Ryder thought. He wasn’t sure why they needed to go to the library, though. With wikipedia at their fingertips, he was sure that they could manage the assignment from home if they really wanted to. Before he could suggest the alternative, however, the bus stopped. Instantly, Lana was on her feet, dragging him along.
Even though he couldn’t see his friend, Ryder was sure that Jake was back on the bus, snickering at the sight.
It didn’t take long before they found themselves weaving through the halls toward the library. By this point, Lana had stopped dragging him, and he was moving under his own power. As they turned the final corner, Ryder caught the sweet scent emanating from Lana’s hair once again.
God, her perfume smelled good. Was it getting hot in here?
He was pulled out of his momentary reverie as Lana opened the doors to the library. The doors were fitted with an ID scanner for visitors outside the normal opening hours. It was a fairly new system, but several students had already complained about the locks not behaving as they should. Ryder shrugged at this. After all, they weren't intending to be there for very long and would likely be out again before closing hours.
“So Ryder. You’re the artist here. Where are the shelves with the art books?” Lana asked, a twinkle in her gorgeous eyes, hands finding the soft swell of her athletic hips.
Pulling himself together, he swiftly looked for the signs noting the different areas, and set out in the direction for literature on art. In only a few minutes, they found themselves at a table near a window. This part of the library wasn’t visible to most of the rest of the library due to the sheer size of the shelves. Looking for a bit longer, they managed to find a relevant book or two, and started to read.
Ryder, however, was distracted. He just couldn’t wrap his head around why Lana still wanted to work with him on this project after what he said at the museum. She certainly wasn’t acting like someone who was put off. Was it too much to hope that he hadn’t screwed everything up? That maybe she liked him? Of course, maybe she just wanted to ensure a good grade. There was also something else. Something he couldn’t describe. Just this feeling that something was itching at him, pushing for him to do something. He started to reach for his bag when suddenly…
A staccato hum suddenly rang out. Lana’s sculpted brows furrowed, and she unslung her backpack on the nearest table. She unzipped it, felt inside, and promptly found her phone. Checking the caller ID, she turned towards Ryder.
“I have to take this,” she muttered as she walked over to the window.
As she stood there, engaged in conversation, twisting back and forth as she talked, Ryder once more felt the urge. Rummaging through his back, he found it: the notebook he found in the museum. Picking up his pencil, he gently chewed on it for a moment before inspiration hit him.
Putting pencil to paper, he quickly drew out a framework, settling on a semi-profile posture, looking as if she could be in the middle of a step.
Soon, he had sketched out her hair, making it longer and giving it more volume, before moving to the shape of her body. His pencil glided over the page as a stunning hourglass figure started taking shape. He then traced down what would become slender, and yet powerful arms. The legs and hips became his next target as he felt his speed pick up.
He was a man possessed. The image on the page almost seemed to draw itself, guiding his hand in confident strokes, first outlining the image in his mind, then shading it in with more detail than he’d ever managed before.
As Ryder neared a complete sketch, Lana spoke up from the window. She had finished her call.
“Alright, time to get started?” She suggested as she sauntered her way over to the table, before putting her phone back into her bag.
Ryder sighed as he looked over his sketch. He had scribbled a few words on another page to help him figure out what he wanted to aim for: Strong, powerful, passionate, beautiful…
“Hey, what is that?” Lana inquisitively, circling around behind him.
Shocked from her sudden appearance, Ryder quickly tried to close the notebook with a yelp, but only managed to cover most of the page with his hand. “I-it’s nothing?!” He cried, hoping that she didn’t see what he had drawn so far.
Lana’s crooked eyebrow, however, told him that she had.
“Really? It definitely looked a lot more like something than nothing,” she said, her voice becoming a gentle purr.
Ryder gulped, still torn about whether to show his work or not. He could feel his heartbeat picking up as several scenarios ran through his head about her reaction, each worse than the last. As if he hadn’t fucked things up with this girl enough already today!
Lana had stepped forward, her chest brushing pleasantly against his upper back as she leaned forward for a peek. Before he could react, she picked up the notebook and flipped it open. Fearing the worst, he closed his eyes, preparing for her disgusted reaction. But instead of disgust, her voice was filled with wonder.
“Wow… Is this me?”
He had been ready for a variety of reactions. That wasn’t one of them.
“You drew this? While I was talking on the phone?” she asked, her voice still laced with wonder, the pressure of her chest against his back increasing.
Lost for words, Ryder could barely gather his thoughts for a coherent response. Why did he keep doing stuff like this around Lana? It was too much! He was bound to freak her out! “I-I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have-”
“I love it!” Lana cut him off before she slipped away, the pleasant pressure on his back disappearing, much to Ryder’s disappointment, leaving only a tingle on his skin in its wake.
Lana took a seat next to him, still gushing over the drawing. “Despite all your creative liberties, I can still see the resemblance.” Her eyes were glued to the page, darting across the sketch as if to take in every detail. “Is this really how you see me?”
“Well, I…” Ryder wasn’t sure how to answer. Every time he had been honest, every time he had been brave, he hadn’t scared her off. Should he continue to take that risk? Maybe it was bound to backfire at some point? Still, he felt the strange compulsion come over him again, urging him to tell her. “...yes.”
He heard the legs of the chair scrape the floor as Lana rose, circling around the table once again until she stood directly across from him. She leveled him with a look filled with a strange intensity. “You really do think I’m the prettiest girl in the world, don’t you?”
Ryder was stunned. Nothing about today was going as he’d planned. He’d never dare hope that his day would end like this. Just him and Lana. Together. Alone. In the school library. Not hating him. In fact, as unlikely as it seemed, all his gaffes, all his unplanned directness, all his stupidity actually seemed to be working. The way she was looking at him right now—he wasn’t sure what it meant exactly, but he was certain that there was no disgust. No mocking. Whatever was in those eyes, it wasn’t anything like that. His eyes descended her body toward the drawing once again, taking in several changes in her appearance along the way. Her hips seemed to have widened subtly. The amber ringlets of her fiery mane seemed to blaze with more intensity, glimmering with increased vitality. Was it longer than it had been earlier? How was that possible? It must just be his imagination
“I…” Ryder stammered, thrown off guard by the small but noticeable changes in Lana’s body. “I…”
The intensity in Lana’s eyes softened. “It’s okay, Ryder. You can tell me.”
Ryder’s eyes rose again from the page to meet hers, taking in swells within her blouse that seemed fuller along the way. When he found her gaze, her eyes seemed larger somehow, almost mesmerizing in their glimmering warmth.
He swallowed hard, gathering his wits to reply. “I do. I really do.”
He had said it. He’d really said it. Again. Only this time, judging from the look in her eyes, she believed him this time.
She shivered, her posture straightening as her arms crossed tightly under her breasts for a moment, emphasizing their burgeoning fullness even more. Was she growing taller? Ryder could swear that she was. Her blouse seemed even tighter now, as did her skirt. It wasn’t just his imagination. He was sure of it. She had changed again. Grown. In all the right places.
“It’s a little cold in here, isn’t it?” she muttered, glancing around.
Ryder felt anything but cold. His cheeks felt flushed, his forehead warm, a bead of sweat rolling down his spine. But he wasn’t about to tell her that! “Definitely!” he agreed instantly.
“Anyway, about your drawing…” Lana said as she sauntered her way back over to him. Ryder gulped once more, the sudden fear that now would be the moment she tore into him for being a perv filling him.
“... it isn’t finished yet, correct?” she asked, already knowing the answer as she placed the notebook back in Ryder’s hands.
“It isn’t finished. You only had time to make a sketch after all. A very impressive one, though.” Lana licked her lips as she took a few steps back, now leaning against the table.
“It… isn’t finished?”
“Well, what are you waiting for then?” Lana giggled as she gathered her hair over her right shoulder, and placed herself in a semi-profile towards him. “Your model is ready, and only waiting for you.”
With that, she strode over to a nearby bookshelf and leaned against it, throwing a sultry look in his direction.
The look in her eyes as she gazed directly at him sent a sudden thrill through Ryder’s tense body. “Uh, o-okay…”
As he picked up the notebook again, Ryder recalled the subtle impossible changes in Lana. Her longer glimmering hair, her fuller bust, and tighter skirt… Something strange was happening, something outside of Lana’s apparent interest in him.
“Ryder, please…” she purred. “Okay with this. Finish it.” She said with a seductive smile.
That was all he needed to know.
Ryder then picked up his pencil and began to work, slowly at first, given his nervousness, but rapidly picking up speed. Something about this moment felt right. Like it was supposed to happen. Like the pieces of some cosmic puzzle were falling perfectly into place.
Where it had previously just shown a woman with an incredible figure, there now was lithe muscle and an increasingly sensual bodysuit. Ryder barely even thought anymore, he just did what felt right.
“How is it coming?” asked Lana, throwing an even longer, thicker red mane over her shoulder.
Ryder looked up, noticing additional changes. Were her legs longer? And more toned? God, her muscles looked fit. So sculpted. And her waist was so tiny. It was difficult to tell whether that was the reason that the shape of her body looked so much more dramatic now or whether her hips and breasts had actually grown as her waist narrowed. In any case, her body was improving even more rapidly now…
He looked back into the notebook. That’s when it clicked.
She was becoming the girl in his drawing!
Ryder glanced down at the page, at the exaggerated style in which he had drawn her, at the way he had let his feelings guide his hand, shape his creation. And now, those same feelings were shaping her!
For a moment, Ryder wondered whether he was going crazy. Even her clothes had started to subtly change, with her blouse becoming tighter by the minute, and her sneakers shifting into short high-heeled boots.
Reality wasn’t supposed to change based on a drawing. That was impossible. He must be losing it. Was this even happening? Was he actually asleep or something? Dreaming all of this?
Lana’s brow furrowed. “What’s wrong?”
“I just… something seems to be happening. Something unbelievable.”
“What?” Lana asked with a voice that was sweeter than honey, coming over to rest her slender fingers on his hand.
Ryder looked down at the manicured fingertips resting on the back of his hands, her touch instantly driving the unwanted questions from his mind. Those fingers felt soft. Warm, despite her earlier comments about the cold in the room. There was no question that the girl before him was very real, not simply some creation of his hormone-addled mind.
But there was something else that he detected in those fingers, despite the delicate nature of her touch. Power. It was as if her fingers were humming with it, an electric current pulsing just beneath her perfect skin.
Suddenly driven by another strange urge, Ryder’s mouth said something he didn’t expect. “Try to lift the bookcase.”
Lana blinked, the girl clearly surprised. “Lift the bookcase?” she repeated, as if wanting to make sure she heard him correctly.
Ryder nodded vigorously, knowing it sounded crazy, but he was beginning to trust these strange urges to say things that he would never normally say.
Lana’s full lips formed a slight frown as she withdrew her hands from his. “Ryder, the shelves are loaded with books. There’s no way I’m going to be able to—”
“Just try. Please?” he flashed her a reassuring smile. Somehow, he knew that this needed to happen.
Lana glanced at the bookshelf, then back at Ryder, then shrugged. She marched toward the bookshelf, placing a hand on either side.
Lana stared at him for a moment before offering a lilting laugh. “Do you know how crazy you sound right now? Me, lifting a colossal bookshelf?”
“Just try.” Ryder felt a strange sense of confidence filling him as he nodded encouragingly toward her.
Lana’s smile slowly faded as she stared into Ryder’s expectant eyes. She realized he was serious. Lana rolled her eyes. “Fine. I’ll try. But when nothing happens, I’m gonna say ‘I told you so’.”
Turning her attention toward the bookshelf, a look of concentration formed on Lana’s increasingly gorgeous face as she tightened her grip on the shelf. Her long lashes lowered as her stance widened. Her chin dipped slightly as she focused on the shelf.
The shelf rose in one smooth move from the floor.
Lana’s eyes went wide as it dawned on her what she was doing at that moment. More shocked than tired, she let go of the shelf, and It dropped back to the floor, off-balance from the shifted books. It leaned to one side, then crashed to the floor, the fluttering sound of papers lasting for the briefest of moments after the resounding thud before silence once again filled the empty library.
Slowly, wide eyes turned to Ryder. “Omigod. D-did you just see that? Did that seriously just happen?”
Ryder’s heart was thumping hard in his chest. His soul felt uplifted, like he was witnessing the birth of an angel. Then, he nodded, too awed to speak.
“I just lifted a fucking bookcase! And it was so easy!” she breathed, staring at the scattered books on the ground.
Ryder rose from his seat, walked over to Lana, took her gently by the shoulders, and walked her over to a mirror that was hanging on the wall. The moment Lana took in her new appearance, her hands shot to her mouth, covering the large O formed by her lips. Her eyes scanned up and down her reflection.
“I’m beautiful!” she breathed, continuing to stare at the image before her. “Beyond beautiful,” she corrected a moment later. “Gorgeous.”
Her hands gently moved across her improved body, rising and falling over every contour and valley they met along their way. Her blouse had long ago become a tight top that clung to her flawless skin. Her hair looked as good as if it had been featured in a shampoo commercial, perhaps even better!
Then her shimmering eyes filled with concern. She turned to Ryder, searching his admiring eyes. “What’s happening to me?”
“I… I’m not sure, but it looks like you’re turning into what I’m drawing,” said Ryder, steady confidence filling his voice in a way it never had before.
Lana swallowed hard, then wrapped her toned arms around Ryder and kissed him. Ryder’s eyes widened suddenly, then fluttered shut. His arms rose to wrap around her slender body as she deepened the kiss.
When she broke the kiss a moment later, they were both breathless. “Finish.”
“What?” asked Ryder, in a state of delirium from the quiet intensity of her kiss.
“The drawing,” she breathed. “I want you to finish it.”
Dazed, Ryder nodded. She turned him around and walked him back to where the notepad lay on the table.
As he sat down once more, he heard Lana whisper in his ear. “Whatever inspires you… I want it.”
At that moment, he felt like he had been struck by lightning. His pencil moved like it was a blur. No detail was too minor to escape his attention.
As the lines flowed together to complete the whole, he could hear soft moans escape from Lana’s quivering lips. Determined to finish, he didn’t let his eyes escape from his illustration, didn’t see how Lana’s body found itself deep in the throes of another major transformation.
Cold had long since lost its hold on her body as it was filled with the most intense, most pleasurable heat imaginable. Originating from seemingly everywhere at once, she didn’t as much see, as feel the changes as they overcame her, wave after blissful wave.
Closing her eyes, she let go of the last bit of control she tried to exert over her transformation, no longer trying to hold back what was coming. As she did, her heels lifted off the ground, quickly followed by her toes as gravity lost its power over her. For the briefest of moments, her mind felt nearly unbearable pressure before her consciousness exploded outward! It was like her mind had opened itself to the entire universe after having been locked into one unimaginably tiny pocket of flesh and bone for so long.
As her mind expanded to touch and encompass everything she could imagine, her body continued to blossom. Her muscles became denser, filling with impossible strength, and deep in her mind, she now knew with certainty that the weight of bookshelves would no longer even register to her.
As her body grew, her clothes began to fray, starting to lose the impossible battle of containing her swelling curves. But, as if on queue, it no longer mattered.
Bursting with brilliant white light from within, her clothing glowed with unthinkable power as it reformed, slithering down acres of creamy skin. Her top and skirt melted before merging together, weaving into a green skin-tight bodysuit. Her boots lengthened and changed color as they crawled up past her knee, only stopping as they reached her shapely thighs before turning into a reflective gold.
Her top extended past her shoulders, incandescent fabric crawling ever so slowly towards her fingers as they slowly formed golden gloves. Around her supple hips, a golden sash manifested itself as a long, flowing cape draped itself around her shapely shoulders.
Crying out in ecstasy, Lana felt like she could hardly contain herself anymore. It was so much.
Ryder, too preoccupied with the drawing, hadn’t seen any of Lana’s next round of changes, but he could more than hear them.
“R-Ryder!” Lana gasped before her eyes snapped shut and her head whipped back, another massive wave of transformative pleasure rippling through her magnificent body.
Her timing was perfect. Ryder finished the last of his furious scribbling, shading the last of SuperLana’s luscious curves into absolute perfection. He looked up, and his breath caught in his throat. “My God,” he choked out.
Lana hovered in mid air, slowly rotating with her eyes squeezed shut. Endless legs entwined, her new, skin-tight costume leaving nothing of her impossibly perfect body to the imagination. The sleek lines of sculpted steel that were her muscles twitched and spasmed in the final moments of her metamorphosis. Her face was that of an angel, the lush waves of crimson curls that framed it tumbling all the way down to her succulent ass. The dramatic curve of her luxuriant breasts mesmerized Ryder as she completed her languid airborne spin, their shape so perfect, their fullness unmatchable.
She was a goddess—a vision of inhuman power and unspeakable beauty, no longer bound by the laws of physics. No longer bound by anything beyond Ryder’s imagination.
“Lana?” Ryder asked cautiously as he moved closer, finally finding his voice after a long moment of breathless silence.
Lana’s interminable lashes fluttered open, iridescent blue eyes lighting the room as her gaze met Ryder’s with a blazing smolder. The floating goddess of his dreams smirked as she saw how enamored he was by her new appearance. In the expression, he saw the Lana that he had always known, the mischievous girl who liked to tease him, now transformed into the ultimate woman.
“In the flesh!” she giggled as she swirled in the air, more quickly this time. Her cape and hair fluttered, swishing about her curvaceous perfection as she finished her twirl.
Ryder felt a sudden weightlessness and looked down just in time to see his feet leaving the ground. He rose toward Lana, her eyes focused intently on him. “L-Lana? Are y-you doing this?” It was a silly question. It had to be her, yet he couldn’t keep himself from asking. He wasn’t sure what else to say!
“What do you think?” Lana asked, her voice lowering to a sultry rasp. She extended a willowy arm and curled a single finger inward.
Ryder felt his floating body change direction, now moving horizontally as much as vertically, approaching the ginger-haired vision of his fantasies.
As he reached her, Ryder struggled for something to say, for the right words to whisper to his sensual goddess. But before he could think of anything, a soft fingertip pressed itself to his lips, the touch ending all thoughts of speech.
Ryder’s body floated the last couple of feet to Lana’s waiting smile until his lips touched the pillowy warmth of hers.
It was heaven.
There was no other way to describe it. Her lips were as sweet as they were soft, as passionate as they were caressing. It was like being enveloped in a bath of liquid ecstasy, the intensity of the pleasure rippling through Ryder in rapturous waves almost more than he could bear.
Lana’s luscious chest pressed into his, her breasts silky and plush, firm but yielding—only to him. It was as if they were made to be together. Made to touch. Made to be one. Her legs wrapped around his dangling extremities, smooth muscles gliding over his pants with a grace that a ballerina could only envy.
Ryder’s eyes slowly drew closed as he drank in the sensations, the exquisite buzz of sensual pleasure that threatened to completely short out his flickering brain.
“Ryder, do you know what you have done?” she asked as she broke off the kiss after a long moment, her eyelashes slowly rising to reveal her glowing blue eyes once again as they touched down on the floor.
Ryder struggled to open his eyes, still feeling the lingering effects of her voluptuous lips. When he finally did, her question reverberated in his consciousness. He knew he needed to give her an answer. He shook his head, partly out of confusion, partly to try to collect his scrambled thoughts in the face of such mesmerizing beauty. “W-what do you mean?”
Lana grinned, her arms and legs gliding away as she once more floated away from him. Ryder felt naked without the warmth of her touch, his body trembling with sudden withdrawal. “You really have no idea how powerful you’ve made me, do you?”
As if to demonstrate what she meant, she raised her hand as her eyes started to glow with greater intensity. All of a sudden, all of the bookshelves around Ryder rose from the floor simultaneously. A moment later, all of the books flew out of them and formed intrinsic patterns, like stars, squares, even a shape so beautifully complex that he didn’t have the faintest idea what to call it.
“You haven’t just made me strong, fast, and beautiful, you have also enhanced my mind beyond what people could possibly imagine!” she laughed as she slowly replaced the books on the shelves, then lowered them smoothly back down to the floor.
“Remember what I said earlier? About wanting me for my amazing brain? Well, you have, quite literally, given me exactly that!” she laughed aloud, the sound like a dulcet chord from the most beautiful of angelic choirs.
“I-I guess I d-did,” managed Ryder, having difficulty with his powers of speech as he gazed into her hypnotic eyes.
“Ryder,” her soft voice had become deep and husky, sending shivers down his spine as she floated mere inches from him. “I’m glad that you like my mind, but right now, I want you to want something else.”
“W-what’s that?” asked Ryder, his gaze finding her lips, longing to feel them against his once again.
“My body,” she said simply, a soft finger extending outward to trace down the center of Ryder’s chest. One by one, the buttons of his shirt popped off, effortlessly stripped from the fabric of his shirt by her perfect fingernail.
“I want you… so, so badly right now,” she moaned as her other hand began to caress the magnificent contours of her heavenly chest. He could see her nipples growing erect until the clinging fabric of her bodysuit as her fingers brushed over them.
The sight was electric, the most erotic thing Ryder had ever seen in his life. With the accompanying words, Ryder could think of nothing except how much he wanted her too. He cautiously lifted his hand, unsure what to do. Looking into her eyes, he saw nothing but pure, unadulterated lust. Before he could think any further about it, his hand extended forward, connecting with the fabric. For the first time, his fingers felt the nubile give of her seductive flesh.
“Yes! Touch me!” Ryder heard Lana’s excitement echo through every corner of his mind as another need-filled moan escaped from Lana’s full lips. Feeling his own supercharged libido lurch into uncharted territory, he grabbed her shoulders and crushed his lips into hers. Gone was any trace of nervousness, gone was any first-time awkwardness. Ryder’s body demanded this, demanded her. Blazing passion consumed his mind, and there was no room for anything else.
As he tried his damndest to explore every inch of her mouth with his tongue, his other hand furiously roaming Lana’s divine body, eliciting an excited purr from her as he did. He could feel her excitement, feel the heat of her breath on his lips. She wanted this every bit as much as he did.
As if on cue, Lana ripped off their clothes with her mind, sending bits of fabric exploding in every direction like confetti. Their bodies were bared to one another, trembling with the decisive urgency of long-held anticipation.
“Take me…” Lana begged into Ryder’s lust induced mind, unwilling to leave the confines of the kiss just yet. The sound of the powerful goddess’ need, nearly sent Ryder into spasms of ecstasy all by itself. But he managed to fight the urge. He needed to do this properly. To give Lana everything he had. To consummate the attraction he’d felt for so very long by giving her as much pleasure as she had already given him.
Acting on nothing but instinct, Ryder guided both of his hands down to her full shapely butt, and lifted her up before taking her to the nearest table. Slick thighs coiled around his hips, guiding his tip to her waiting slit with another moan of eager desperation. As he placed her down, Lana spread her legs, leaving her dripping entrance open for him.
Not letting his fear and insecurity get a chance to get a word in, Ryder plunged in.
Lana screamed as he entered her, the sheer pleasure of his throbbing member catching her entirely off guard. He quickly found a rhythm, sliding his shaft in and out of her with animalistic fervor.
As his hips undulated, thrusting himself into her again and again, he began to kiss and nip the elegant contours of her swan-like neck. Her head rocked back, her thick mane shaking and rippling as her eyes closed in rapture. The dual sensations were almost more than she could stand!
Feeling the heat rise within her, she unleashed it.
Her eyes opened once more, glowing intensely as her legs tightened around Ryder, crushing his hips into hers.
“Harder,” she groaned, her hungry mouth finding his in another urgent kiss.
Ryder pumped into her with reckless abandon. He could feel the hardness in her superhuman muscles, feel the desperation in her hips as they rolled upward to meet his thrusts again and again.
“Fill me up,” she breathed, lost in passion as her lips explored his jaw, his chin, his cheeks.
Ryder could feel himself crash into her violently, his body acting with a mind of its own, slamming into her with every ounce of his strength. The gasps and pants puffing against his face only encouraged him to keep at it. He could feel the rising excitement in his love, in himself. Their bodies were one, woven together in a sinuous dance of rising ecstasy.
The table began to crack, then it snapped in half. Ryder’s wild thrusting had driven Lana’s invulnerable body right through it—but they didn’t fall. Instead, he found that both of them had begun to float upward. Grabbing onto her for dear life, he momentarily stopped before Lana moaned, “Please… Don’t stop now!” The need in her voice sent another savage surge of desire through Ryder’s already shaking form.
But just as he resumed their lovemaking, he felt a part of her penetrate him. Her mind filled his just as his body filled hers. Ryder felt how their minds seamlessly linked. He felt all the lust and all the love that she held for him, how she had secretly longed for this moment for months, just as he had. She, in turn, felt the deep desire he had long tried to hide from her. All those nights he had dreamed about her, hoping that he would one day find the courage to tell her how he felt. All those evenings spent pouring his mental images of her onto his sketch pad, tracing every line of her face, every contour of her shapely form, filling them with his fantasies…
“Oh, fuck,” Lana gasped, crushing her lips to his mouth in one final, quivering kiss. Ryder could sense it coming as her body tightened around him almost painfully, her perfect muscles wrapped so tightly about his thrusting cock. Their climax was imminent.
“Oh, fuck!” Lana cried, tearing her mouth away as her abs clenched and toes curled.
Just like that, it happened.
Ryder exploded within her, letting out an animalistic cry of his own. He raged into her, his entire body going rigid as their shared screams shattered the still silence of the room. Books shuddered on the bookshelves as Lana’s mind rattled everything in the room with orgasmic rapture. A monitor clattered to the floor, then a printer, the entire room pulsing with her wild, uncontained excitement.
Then, Ryder collapsed onto his naked goddess, completely spent. For a long moment, they merely breathed together, the ragged rhythm of their chests rising and falling in perfect synchronization.
Ryder rested his cheek against the upper slopes of Lana’s full breasts, content in a way he’d never felt before as they continued to float above the destroyed table below. Then, he heard something. Footsteps. Coming from outside.
As the handle to the library door clicked, about to pull open, Ryder’s head rose from its resting place, alarm written over his features.
“Don’t worry,” Lana purred, her voice velvet. She pointed at the door, then gave a tiny swirl of her finger. Instantly, the door that had begun to open, slammed shut.
“What the hell?” came a sharp voice from the other side.
Lana smiled, her eyes twinkling as Ryder felt more than heard the power of her next mental command. “Leave. Now. Forget everything that you heard.”
An instant later, the sound of retreating footsteps filled their ears.
“You’re amazing,” said Ryder, letting his cheek fall to its previous resting place.
“I am everything you want me to be,” she replied, giving his body a soft squeeze.
“Ouch!” he exclaimed, noticing the bruises on his outer thighs and back for the first time.
Lana flinched. “Oooo. Sorry about that. I guess I didn’t know my own strength.”
“It’s okay,” Ryder reassured her, brushing a displaced lock of hair from her face. “I wouldn’t trade today for anything.”
Lana’s eyes fluttered shut once more, the same look of concentration appearing on her delicate features. “Neither would I…” A soft white glow covered Ryder’s body, healing his battered form of its injuries.
“You can do that too?” Ryder breathed, awestruck.
“I can,” she grinned, her luminous eyes popping open once again. “And more…”
Ryder felt his member, still inside her, inflate with new life.
“Want to try that again?” Lana asked, a mischievous twinkle lighting seductive gaze.
Ryder simply smiled in response as his hips began to roll into hers once more.
As they lay on the floor of the library, scattered books and pages all around them, Ryder could feel nothing but pure amazement at what had happened. Everything had gone so fast, yet at the same time, it felt like it had gone on for years.
As he considered all of the events of the day, he noticed Lana stirring in his arms. That simple movement proved itself to be more than enough for him to feel like a spark had flared its way through him.
“I don’t know about you, but that was amazing,” Lana cooed as the tip of her nail slowly moved its way down his chest. “This body you gave me… it feels insatiable!”
Lana then took hold of his chin, guiding it towards her face. “And I love it.” she whispered as she gently kissed him on the lips. This time, it wasn’t out of lust. It was passionate but gentle. Now, her touch was soft, delicate, as if she were savoring the waning hours of the evening.
Before they even knew it, they were in another round of lovemaking.
As the light of the sun passed through the windows on the opposite side of the doors to the library, the tiny panel for the ID scan gave a short beep! The doors swung open, seemingly by themselves.
Through them passed two young people, hand in hand, with the young woman, a statuesque figure of pure beauty resting her head on the young man’s shoulder. He was dressed in fine but ordinary clothes, while she sported a sleeveless green summer dress that left her shoulders bare. Her long, fiery red hair reached all the way down to her magnificent ass. As they walked down the hallway together, the clacking of her heels could be heard all around them.
Nuzzling further into his neck, Lana finally spoke. “You know, I could easily have made it so we didn’t have to go to class anymore…” she teased, knowing full well what her new boyfriend would say.
“No way, I actually like Mr. Henderson’s lectures!” he retorted, eliciting an amused giggle from Lana. “Besides, we still have that presentation we need to make about the painting.”
Lana pouted, both loving and hating Ryder for bringing that up. “Hey, it isn’t my fault that you turned me into the woman of your dreams instead of doing our assignment!”
Ryder was about to come up with a retort but decided it was better not to argue that point too much. “Touché, but we still need to come up with something!”
“Oh! Well, how about…” Lana said as she rose from the ground to float before him. She started to glow with an awe inspiring intensity.
“How about I just tell them I became a god?” her voice echoed, every syllable filled with power as the school seemingly laid itself bare in front of them, the endless void of space stretching out from Lana in every direction.
“That my power extends beyond and above everything in existence!” she continued as her form started to flicker, her dress one moment green, the next a kaleidoscope of indescribable color. Her hair whipped about as her aura intensified, illuminating her luminous eyes, her perfect features. She was every bit the omnipotent god from Ryder’s final sketch, terrifyingly powerful, mind-bendingly beautiful. Then, the storm dissipated—gone as quickly as they had come. Lana floated easily back to the ground.
Ryder tried his hardest to keep his thoughts straight before he finally managed to collect them sufficiently to shake his head. “I thought you didn’t want to reveal yourself.”
Lana smiled before shrugging her shoulders, as she turned her clothing normal again. “I didn’t… but I think that last change you made to me at the end of our twelfth round, besides making the notebook disappear, and giving me literal divine powers, might have given me the tiniest little desire to want to be worshiped,” she said, whispering the last bit in his ear. As shivers rippled down his body from her little display of ASMR, she gave him a mental image of what she planned to do to him later in her bed—and exactly the kind of worship she had in mind from him.
Gulping, Ryder took her offered hand once more. Then, the two of them walked toward their first class of the day. Lana nibbled her lower lip as she considered how to tease her newfound love next.