Villains or Heroes by Ashlynn Monroe

Villains or Heroes by Ashlynn Monroe

Villains or Heroes

Star City Crusaders, Book 3
by Ashlynn Monroe

Changeling Press

eBook ISBN: 06839-02202

When Kory was taken into Doctor Death’s embrace, she found a long lost friend. Her connection with him has left her with an inner battle against good and evil that is pulling her in two directions. Can Kory convince her dark lover to switch teams — or is she doomed to watch the man she loves destroy himself from the inside out?

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Chapter One

Kory was wearing nothing but one of Thatcher’s, a.k.a. Doctor Death’s, long white lab coats and her panties. She danced around the laboratory to the thundering rhythm of AC/DC while making coffee. She hadn’t ever considered herself much of a morning person, but weeks in captivity had changed her internal alarm clock.
At first Thatcher had kept her in a dark room and she’d spent her days and nights just catching up on sleep. But when he started to let her out, she hadn’t run away, and over time he’d stopped watching her. Eventually she made herself at home.
She knew her mother would be worried, yet she couldn’t bring herself to try to escape. Her recently discovered superpower of empathy was most likely the culprit. She had a feeling Thatcher’s need to keep her was mucking up her feelings.
He’d been out late last night and when he’d come back to his lab he’d looked morose and exhausted. She should hate the villain who held her against her will, but she couldn’t bring herself to do that. His pain touched her like a dark caress and she wanted to help him. There was good in him, she could see it. She’d met him as a child, when he’d been injured, but the man still held that boy’s agony in his heart.
“You brighten this place,” Thatcher divulged gruffly. “I should send you away.”
Kory squeaked and turned in surprise. She thought he’d sleep longer considering he’d only been home a few hours.
Home. She missed hers. No matter how many times he said he shouldn’t keep her there, he never sent her away. She knew that should bother her, but it didn’t. He looked so hot with his mussed dark hair, intense blue eyes, and dimpled chin. He was lean and tall with unexpected muscle in all the right places. She was lusting after the villain and the need made her inwardly cringe.
She’d suffered this tortured man in her head for years without fully understanding what his presence meant. She’d accepted him as a mental illness she was managing. He’d kept her from enduring an assault of empathy. She had a power, she was one of the mutants, and now she was trapped here and unable to use the thing that made her special.
“Can I touch you, Kory?” Thatcher queried softly.
He wore long blue gloves that kept his electrified hands of death away from the world until he chose to unleash his awesome power. She shivered. His thick goggles kept her from reading his expression. “Why?”
He stepped back and whatever moment they’d been having ended. “Why indeed, sweet little Kory?”
She glared at him. He gave a brief snort of amusement. He never truly laughed and that made her melancholy on his behalf. “Why am I still here?” she snapped.
His turmoil didn’t excuse his actions. As much as she wanted to comfort him, and fuck him, she needed to escape and put her mother’s worry to rest. It was time to put an end to her foolishness and Thatcher’s selfishness. The contradictory feelings left her overwhelmed. She wondered if it was the empathy reading his lust or something to that affect. Kory rubbed her upper arms. Suddenly, the lab felt cold.
Thatcher turned, running up the stairs like a madman, screaming unintelligible things. She made out only one phrase. “It’s too soon!”
Fear kept her frozen. His extra outburst of insanity wasn’t a good sign.
The door swung open and a woman walked in. Kory’s eyes widened. The newcomer wore white spandex with her knee high go-go boots. Her chestnut brown hair, pulled back in a ponytail, shone under the lights. A tiny pair of black cat ears sat perched on her head. A dark mask covered the upper half of her face. Her eyes were so bright blue they almost glowed like the electricity in Thatcher’s hands. If those eyes hadn’t been glowing, they’d have been the same color as her own. They were the same height and build. Their cheeks and chin were even the same. The cat woman could have been Kory’s sister.
Kory knew who she was, at any rate. Killer Kitty. Her name had been all over the news for months. She almost asked about the similarity of their features, but when the Kitty unleashed knife-like claws, Kory’s fascination waned. She really wanted to run.
Kory took a step back and bumped into the lab table. This jostling caused the old CD she’d found to skip. Killer Kitty jumped so gracefully she appeared to sail. She landed in front of Kory and looked at her in a bizarre, deeply awkward way. She took a deep inhalation as she sprang up from her landing crouch. Kory remained trapped between the deranged female and the table. She looked around helplessly.
“So you are the part of us he loves? I hate you!” spat the feline.
Kory gasped and her eyes widened. How could she respond to such insanity?
“Don’t hurt her, Kitty!” Thatcher bellowed.
The woman was a few screws short of a hardware store and Kory fought the urge to tell her she needed professional help. Her scary claws persuaded Kory to restrain her sassy side. When the crazy cat turned towards Thatcher and hissed, the level of danger was clear. Kory tried to use the distraction to get away, but Kitty anticipated her maneuver and bent her back to pin her against the table with her razor sharp weapons.
Thatcher was there beside them in an instant. “I’ll kill you if you hurt her. Let her go!” His tone brokered no argument.
“You love her! It’s I who has kept you warm, but it is her you have held. Don’t lie to me! You thought of her as you were fucking me!” There was a pitiful sorrow in the woman’s tone. Kory’s empathy kicked in and she gasped with the quick flickering pain in her stomach and chest. Rage and betrayal swirled inside her core for a moment.
Thatcher didn’t argue. Kory felt physically and mentally devastated as the truth of his connection to her clarified. On a strange metaphysical level, she’d been with them. The idea that her consciousness was playing voyeur gave her the heebie jeebies in a way she wasn’t prepared to analyze. She felt irrevocably disturbed, dirty, and used.
Thatcher gazed down into her eyes and she saw the electricity crackling behind his goggles. “It is always you, my love,” he assured her.
The cat howled with grief. “Then it is I who shall become what he seeks,” she said cryptically as Kory struggled under her hold. The strangest sensation of buzzing filled Kory’s skull. Surreally, Kory’s mind melded with the cat. Memories began to clog her mind and push invasively into her past until it was a blurry dreamscape instead of solid and real. The mystic disruption of who Kory was erupted inside of her as she screamed with every millisecond of the torture.
“No!” Thatcher’s denial sounded a million miles away. Kory closed her eyes and the suffering stole her life. She was dead in a way that belied her heartbeat. Something was inside of her and she’d been squished to the corner of her own mind.
“Now you’ll love me.” The words had come out of Kory’s mouth, but they weren’t hers.
“No! Get out of her. She’s not just a body. You are not her. It’s her soul I love. You are a shadow of her ability I made manifest to save her. I created you and I wish to all that is holy I had destroyed you.”
“Nothing holy would heed your wishes. You and I belong together. She could never understand what drives us. She can never feel the full magnitude of the pleasure we share. You and I are of the darkness and she is the sunshine whose rays would wash you away until you disappear,” Kory’s mouth said. She knew it was the other woman controlling her and she screamed inside her head.
“You’re wrong. Fight her, Kory. You can win. I protected you from her darkness. She is you, your powers, but you are still you,” he explained weakly.
Kory listened from her locked mental closet in horror. A shiver ran down her spine. If what he said was true this evil being was actually her, or at least part of her. The idea was sickening. She could never hurt anyone. She was good, whatever that entailed. She wasn’t a villain. Her empathy made her feel the pain of others, how could she have used that for evil? Confusion made her tired. Just listening was taking a lot out of her. She was slipping. It would be so easy just to let go and rest.
“Fight her!” Thatcher’s demand snapped Kory awake.
Thatcher had her/Kitty in his arms. “You are not Killer Kitty. You are Kory Kerry. I love you. I can’t get in your head. She’s keeping me out. You’re a good woman. You can push her down and take control.”
“I’ll never let you in,” Kory’s mouth said. Her arm came up and plucked the goggles from his eyes. There were fine white scars on his skin around his eyes, but they didn’t detract from his masculine beauty. Those beautiful blue eyes glowed with electricity.
“I know, but you will let me make love to you. You’re feeling whole. I can see the trace of humanity on your face, Kitty. Kory is what you’ve been lacking all these years. You need her. She doesn’t need you. Let her have control and you’ll feel what it truly is to be loved.”
In that moment, Kory felt her interloper’s desire to give him what he wanted. Please! Her silent scream ruined the moment. The Kitty’s mental bristle sent immediate regret coursing through what was left of Kory’s consciousness.
Thatcher’s brow furrowed. His eyes tracked right and left as if he were searching her expression for a response. “Let me show you what it is to be loved. I never should have taken you apart, Kory, but I… you were in agony. The power demanded so much of you. Taking the darkness left you in the light. You didn’t deserve to feel the pain of the entire world. It would have killed you.”
“Yet you let me suffer? You didn’t shield me. I had to find a way to cope so I decided to feel only the anger.” Kitty spoke using Kory’s body again. Kory tried to fight the formation of words. She tried to take control, but Kitty was too strong.
Kitty’s pain vibrated through Kory so intensely that if Kory had been in control of the body her heart would have stopped.
“You were born to suffer,” Thatcher whispered.
Then Kitty was crushing Kory’s mouth to his and he was kissing her back with bruising intensity. When Kitty pulled back, she gazed up at him and soul-shattering sorrow filled her so fully it didn’t leave room for any other feelings. “It will never be me,” Kitty said.
Kory felt Kitty weakening and she gave a mental lurch for control. Then it was she in his arms. Kory watched the emotions play across his expression. His frown deepened and then his brows rose. His eyes widened. His lips parted.
A slow, sensual smile spread across Thatcher’s mouth. “My Kory,” he uttered with the reverence of a prayer. “Mine.”
Her heartbeat quickened and a small gasp filled her lungs before exiting on a sigh. The electricity under his gloves vibrated against the thin cotton of the lab coat. He slowly pushed the shoulder of the garment down. Kory was having a hard time keeping her breathing steady. She was letting Doctor Death disrobe her. He might be a hot guy with a tortured soul, but he was still an uber evil villain. Maybe it was the new unity between her light and darkness, but she liked it.
Kory ran her hand up his chest. She couldn’t help herself. She wanted to feel his power filling her pussy. She wanted to play with fire. He was danger and she was sick of playing it safe. He’d been in her head so many times during sex. He’d stalked her mind. She wanted him to worship her body. “Are you going to fuck me, Thatcher?”
“Kory…” Her name hissed out of him. His eyes widening for an instant before he hid his surprise. “I’m going to make love to you. You will scream with pleasure, but it will not be from a simple fuck.”
His words made her shiver. The menacing tone of his voice was erotic as hell. She let the lab coat slide off her arm, and it hung off her other side. Thatcher pushed that shoulder down too, and the fabric caught at her elbow. Kory unbent her arm and the coat fell to the concrete floor. She stood naked except for her white cotton panties. Thatcher’s hungry expression only made the crotch damper. He moved quickly and a moment later, he’d ripped them off her body.
“Hey, those are all I have,” she protested.
“An oversight on my part. I assure you that I’ll secure you as much clothing as you desire, but now I want to see your skin. I can smell your lust and I want to taste it.”
Thatcher tossed the ruined undies carelessly away as he dropped to his knees before her. Kory’s legs trembled the moment he brushed her labia with his fingers. She heard his sharp inhalation and it only fueled her desire. He gripped her hips and buttocks with a violent passion that drew a gasp from her lips. He clutched her tightly as he pressed his lips to her trim mound. She wanted to spread her legs to give him better access, but he had her completely under his control. The sensation would have been uncomfortable with another man, but somehow this felt just right.
The strange lab equipment hummed around them as automated machines continued their monotonous labors. Fluids ran through swirling tubes and the crackle of power rumbled throughout the assorted mechanisms. Kory gazed around the room as he made her toes curl. His breath touched her sensitive clit making her wet. Panting, Kory drank in the sight of him pleasuring her. She’d never seen anything that looked so right before. Eroticism left her biting her lip to keep herself from crying out just watching his dark hair between her thighs.

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Changeling Press