The deputy

by BRK

Checking out an abandoned property far from anywhere, a sheriff’s deputy discovers that the previous owner didn’t leave by conventional means—and he left behind something that will change the deputy’s life in a most unexpected way.

4,075 words Added Aug 2021 4,093 views 5.0 stars (3 votes)

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I bang on the heavy front door one more time. “Edgeworth County sheriff!” I bellow again.

No answer but the wind tickling an ancient, monolithic oak tree dominating the sprawling, massively overgrown front yard. I take a step back on the porch and look around the property, shaking my head. Two acres of long grass bounded by hedges slowly running wild, a driveway long enough you’d want your own snowplow in winter, a handful of towering deciduous trees titanic enough they probably had their own ecosystems, and smack in the middle of it all a fancy, old-fashioned, solid-looking flannel-gray house so big and ornate Poe probably wrote a lost novel about it. No wonder the original owner did a runner, I think. You’d need a team of people just to keep up with this place. Or a big, active family you could put to work, at the very least.

I go back to the front door and try the knob. It’s locked, not surprisingly. I weigh kicking it in, but it looks pretty darn substantial, and we sheriff’s deputies are generally supposed to abstain from gratuitous property damage and/or shattering our metatarsals if we can help it. I blow out a breath. County’ll have to send out a locksmith later for sure, but before that can happen I’ll need to confirm the land and buildings are indeed vacant and abandoned for the derelict property seizure to proceed accordingly.

I make a slow circuit of the house, idly wondering as I do so if any calls are piling up while I’m out here on the back end of the county casing the House of the Seven Gables. We’re short-staffed these days, what with a couple of recent retirements coupled with the surge in fresh population in the new developments over to Nolansville owing to the pharma complex ramping up, and I’ll bet my lunch my on-call backup is out there somewhere right now, glowering as she takes details at a fender-bender or whatever and wondering what the heck I’m up to that she has to give up her clay-sculpting class and come in on her day off. Well, you see, Shonda, I’m very busy just now testing windows on an abandoned house, like you do, and—

Aha! The lock on the laundry room window’s broken. I push up the sash and easily hoist myself up and in, skimming my legs around and dropping deftly to my feet like an Olympic-champion fenestrator.

Heh. I smile inwardly at the silly image of buff, agile gymnasts in a huge stadium somewhere sliding and rolling through free-standing window-frames before packed crowds glittering with camera-flashes, then get back to business. The laundry room is tidy but disused, a microthin layer of dust having collected on the two machines and the worktable next to them. The cupboard is still stocked with detergent, dryer sheets, and other supplies. As I move through the ground floor I see more of the same. In the kitchen, the cupboards are full of dishes, cans, and dry goods, but the fridge is clean and empty—good thing, too, given the power was cut off weeks ago. The living room, dining room, and sitting room? parlor? are all equipped as one would expect with nice, unpretentiously manly furniture and mundane possessions, none of which have been touched in a while. Upstairs, ditto. There are very nice, well-made clothes in the closet (jackets, blazers, button-up shirts, new-looking jeans on hangars) and in the bureau (boxer-briefs, band tees, bandanas and belts); the big, extra-cozy-looking beds in the master and guest bedrooms are neatly made (and very inviting); and there’s even a toothbrush standing ready in a little glass in the master bath next to the sink. From what I can tell, whatever prompted the original owner to decamp he didn’t take so much as a razor or a change of underwear with him. Sheriff Kehoe told me not to be too surprised by anything I saw out here—evidently he’d heard some rumors—but that had me expecting roomfuls of doll heads or ferrets on meat hooks, not a one-man rapture.

I keep moving. Whoever this guy was, he was a serious fan of the male physique. Everywhere I look, there’s a three-foot copy of the Discobolus or Myron’s Minotaur with the amazing six-pack abs, an immense and intricately-detailed painting of two shirtless but otherwise mail-clad knights passionately making out in the middle of a castle training-yard, a watercolor of some Adonis wandering along a sunny, pristine strand with little knots of admirers in the distance… Even the kitchen wallpaper has a rust-and-tan motif of little ripped centaurs and handsome, playful satyrs. I’m actually feeling a little warm and kind of aroused as I make my tour, as most of the works are hitting my buttons—they’re exceptionally well-crafted and impressively, powerfully evocative of the concept of erotic, masculine beauty in a way that lines up pretty exactly with what I like. I adjust my thickening cock, glad I’m alone for this particular call, and head back down to the main floor to see if I can locate the cellar access. Eventually, I find an extra door in the short hallway between the mud room and the kitchen. It opens with a small squeal, and grabbing my flashlight from my belt and flicking it on I head down the wooden stairs into the strangest space I’ve ever been in.

The entire basement is open and undivided, a single finished space the size of half a football field with gray walls and a matte-black ceramic-tile floor, adequately enough lit by a half-dozen rectangular windows set at ceiling height around the room for me stow my flashlight again. Apart from a bare folding table with a lonely-looking laptop near the foot of the stairs and what looks like a big tool chest in the far corner, there’s nothing in the room—not even a furnace or a water-heater, though I know there must be such equipment somewhere.

What the space does have is what makes it anomalously eerie. Painted on the faux-onyx floor tiles in elegant, meticulous swirls of garish blue, green, magenta, yellow is a massive round design almost like a mandala; and as I finish descending the stairs to stand close to its nearest edge I’m creeped out enough to feel like the big inscription is throbbing with latent power and portent. I can’t escape the feeling that there’s something… otherworldly about it, and for the first time I find myself considering the possibility that the owner’s mysterious departure might just have involved something stranger than a mere sudden impulse to hop in his car and go reinvent himself in Albuquerque, or Buffalo, or wherever you went when you really didn’t want to be in Edgeworth County, U.S.A. anymore.

The air feels thick and warm, too, as if some kind of soft, almost indistinct energy were wafting through it. No dust down here, either. So fucking weird.

I turn to check out the laptop, hoping for clues. I brush the trackpad and to my surprise the thing wakes up—there’s still juice in the battery somehow, despite the electricity cut. From the looks of it he was in the midst of making a video. I play the recording from the beginning. It’s not very long.

“Hey losers,” says a man I don’t recognize, speaking to camera. He’s young—younger than I’d expected given the house, clothes, and art. Maybe he’s older than he looks? He’s clad in a dark maroon tee shirt with floppy black hair and an arrogant smirk and actually kind of handsome in a geeky way, and while I can only see his shoulders he looks unexpectedly buff, with a strong neck, visibly bulging traps, and hard, rounded delts. To be honest, seeing as I’m still a little riled up from all the erotic artwork upstairs I kind of want to tell the guy in the video to shift the camera down and lose the shirt. Fuck, I need to get laid. “So, if you’re watching this,” Mr. Shoulders continues, gesturing behind him at the elaborate design he’d painted on the floor tiles, “that means that after months of training and preparation my portal spell worked, and I’m somewhere I want to be—somewhere you’ll never find me. Good riddance, Nowheresville!”

I snort. “It’s Nolansville, jerk,” I yell at the screen, playing my part in the age-old local joke, despite the other half my comedy duo not actually being present. My attention is drawn by the pattern behind him, though. I can’t really see it, but it seems like the far end is hidden by a swirling, bluish cloud, with occasional glimpses of… someplace else? I glance behind me real quick, as if expecting to surprise the apparition before it can hide itself, but I see nothing but daylight falling on the mandala-painted black ceramic. Weird.

“The house and everything in it is yours, whoever you are,” the geek-sorcerer is saying, ever so cavalierly, like he’s thrilled to be shed of a dwelling that’s situated in a place as lame as this. “Deed’s in the kitchen drawer by the stove. Catch you later, freaks—and by catch you later I mean see you never!” A second later the video ends, freezing on Mr. Shoulders and his gleefully grinning face.

Huh. His claim sounds as bat-shit as anything I’ve ever heard of… but, weirdly, I kind of believe it. I grab my radio off my shoulder. “Hayes to dispatch,” I say into the mic.

I hear a crackle, then our dispatcher responds. “Hey handsome,” Delores purrs. I smile. She’s old enough to be my mother, of course, and the mayor’s sister on top of that, but nothing will ever stop her from pretending to flirt with all the deputies, and me in particular. But then, even no-nonsense ex-Marine Sheriff Kehoe calls me “Sexy McHunkface” (because everyone’s a comedian). “Whatcha got for me?” Delores asks, her tone heavy with pretend innuendo.

“Respect and admiration, as always,” I tell her.

“Likewise, stud,” she replies saucily. Then in a more businesslike tone she adds, “What’s up?”

“I’m out at the Sherwood estate. Tell the boss I have video evidence of the owner’s intent to abandon. He’ll definitely want to show this to the county commissioners.”

“Roger that,” Delores says. “He’s out your way, so I’ll tell him to stop by.”

“Got it. Thanks, Dee.”

“Any time, hot stuff.” I switch off the radio with a grin.

While I wait for Kehoe to show up I figure I should make myself useful. I eye the laptop for a moment but decide against noodling any deeper, not wanting to disturb any evidence unnecessarily just in case this all ends up in some kind of legal snarl. More than that, I swear I can feel the circular pattern on the floor behind me sort of pulling at me.

I turn and walk slowly over to it, rubbing my chin thoughtfully. I notice that set into the complex, curving design are two thick-lined circles with clear, unpainted interiors, each about three feet in diameter. One, ringed in dark magenta, is set near the edge of the design closest to me, and the other, this one bordered in navy blue, is situated opposite it on the far side of the design. I ponder them, intrigued and perplexed. It’s hard to escape the conclusion that you’re meant to stand in one of these circles, but… that’s the part that doesn’t make sense. If this were an exit from this place, like Shoulders Guy said, I’d expect a single, outgoing “transporter pad”, and that most likely at the center of the design. So why are there two?

As I stare at the pattern, I start to feel something I can’t quite explain or understand. It’s as though I’m sensing the deep, earthy energy embedded in the swirling design It almost feels like the lines themselves are moving, and the more I stare the more I’m conscious that an unending source of inhuman power is twining from the circle on my end across the design, by many routes, to the far circle.

“Someplace I want to be,” the sorcerer-geek had said. Maybe you’re supposed to imagine the far circle being in some other location, and the circle teleports you there?

Impulsively, I step into the nearer circle and stare hopefully over at the other one, concentrating on my little apartment over the hardware store in town. I… don’t even know why I do that. Sure, as a kid I wanted to believe magic was real even more than I wanted to brussels sprouts not to be real, but, for Pete’s sake, I’m not a kid anymore! I’m a grown-ass man, with a real job and a gym membership and everything!

Oh, and the only thing dumber than jumping into the circle like that? Not even considering that you might need to prepare yourself with rituals and potions to even be able to use and direct the portal without killing yourself… and that after hearing him go on about the prep and training he’d done. So, yes, I’m an idiot. You’ve heard that expression, fools rush in? Just fit me for a harlequin hat and book me throne room—I’m ready!

Nothing happens at first. I’m calling myself all kinds of ridiculous and am about to step out of the mandala, when suddenly there’s a rapid, clearly palpable surge in that deep mystical energy I was feeling, like it’s physically rising and flowing around me, faster and faster, almost as though I’m stuck in the eye of a tiny, throbbing, room-sized hurricane I can’t even see. My eyes are fixed on the far circle, but unfortunately my concentration is completely blown. I don’t even remember the fact that I was focusing on my apartment, or even that I was trying to get somewhere. I just see the blue circle, colored lines on black swirling around it, and then, an ominous, eerie silver glow starts flickering within…

I feel nauseating dizzy for just a fraction of a second. I squeeze my eyes closed a couple times, steadying myself, as the energy slows again, swirling back down toward the colored lines on the floor. I look up and see a shadowy, muscular male figure slumped on its side on the other side of the circle.

Without thinking I leap across the mandala toward it. As I do so it registers somewhere in my brain that the figure (a) is wearing a brown deputy’s uniform exactly like mine and (b) is collapsed inside the magenta circle where I was standing just a heartbeat earlier. But I ignore all of that as I kneel down inside the circle and check the man’s neck for a pulse. Alive, just dazed.

The strange, powerful energy starts to ramp up again around me. I look up and stare across the patterned floor at the blue-ringed circle, seeing and feeling the same growing manifestation over there as before—the same sense of connection—

Don’t pass out don’t pass out don’t pass out

Another wash of dizziness, and I’m in the blue circle again… gaping across the mandala at myself in the magenta circle, kneeling next to that prone form curled up on its side—who’s also myself. The me that’s over there looks pale and woozy, but hasn’t lost consciousness this time. As the energy winds down again I notice his bright hazel eyes are staring not at me but at something next to me. I look down next to where I’m kneeling. It’s the prone form of me, again. Copied. Copied from the magenta ring to the blue ring. Just like I was.

I lock eyes with the me across the room, the other kneeling me. What the—?

The energy starts swirling up again.

I watch the other me’s eyes grow round with alarm, probably mirroring my own. He looks down at the painted pattern on the tile. I do too. I think frantically. Usually it’s chalk circles. Right? Or sand, or salt. Wizardly cordons are always made with chalk or sand or salt in all the fantasy fiction I’ve seen or read—which means you can kick them apart and let the demons out, or whatever. But there’s nothing to kick apart here.

I meet my double’s eyes again as the potency builds relentlessly around us. Then his eyebrows lift in inspiration and he looks behind me and to the left. I look that way, even as I remember what’s there. The tool chest.

I jump up and run over to it. Flipping open the lid I spot a mechanic’s dream cache of all kinds of hand tools—including, right on top, a modest but serious-looking sledgehammer.

I grab it and instantly whirl to kneel at the edge of the mandala. I crane my arm back and hurl the sledgehammer at the design with all my strength. Instantly the big, black ceramic tiles start shattering into flying shards. It’s such a shock when the energy ends all at once that I’m almost sent reeling. I steady myself and sit back on my heels, panting. The room feels empty and still.

The two prone figures moan, and I get to my feet and hurry over to the one nearest me, forgetting everything else. He’s awake now, and gazing up at me in wonder. I smile sheepishly at him and help him up.

We can’t stop staring at each other. Now, I’m not going to tell you I don’t know I’m a good-looking guy, because, yeah, I know I’m a good-looking guy. But this… I don’t know if it’s something about how we were made together or the way the “portal” spell works, but I feel inseparably drawn to this person, this other me, and I can sense exactly the same from him. Without conscious thought we move toward each other, our arms sliding around each other’s muscular torsos like they belong there. And… oh god, it feels so amazingly good, his pecs pressing against mine, his lats pushing against my biceps, his stubbly cheek nuzzling gently against mine, his warmth and strength radiating through me and mine through his, that I instantly get the hugest and most intense erection I’d ever experienced, even as the world’s horniest teenager (and if you doubt me on that, I have affidavits). Our groins come together and fireworks crackle through me as I feel an identical, unstoppable erection pressed mercilessly against my own.

I glance across to the other mes and see that they’re doing exactly the same thing. They, too, are holding each other lasciviously close, torso against torso and groin against groin, like we’re all at some kind of weird prom just for us and we’ve finally gotten to the slow dance we’ve been waiting all night for.

Squeezing my copy of me tighter, I close my eyes and lean my cheek against his. We hum contentedly, not quite in sync, but we’re all too aroused to stay passive for long. Before long we’ve shifted our mouths onto each other’s and all four of us are kissing, and it’s so crazy erotic that I’m pretty sure we’re not going to last long without both of us cumming like we’ve never cum before. We can’t really stop making out, though. It’s like, holding each other and kissing is what we do, what we’re made for.

My copy of me and I start to deepen the kiss at the same time, our mouths and tongues becoming more aggressive even as we hold each other even tighter, our cocks grinding against each other like the sheer intensity of our need is going to melt through the fabric between them. We’re driving each other to madness, edging each other and backing down, awash not in only own need but the other couple’s, too. It’s agony and ecstasy, and by far the more extreme pleasure I’ve ever experienced.

“Sheriff to Sexyface,” a familiar droll voice suddenly intrudes—pretty loudly, too, as it’s over four radio speakers instead of one. “I’m here at the Sherwood estate. You still on site?”

All four of us groan, almost but not quite in unison. Then, as the ridiculousness of our situation hits us, we all snicker. We look at each other in turn, belatedly realizing that none of us knows which one of us is the “original” or even whether we should even respond at all. Before we can sort this out, though, we hear heavy, booted footsteps on the wooden stairs. “Hayes?” the sheriff calls.

“Down here, boss,” all four of us respond, more or less automatically. The footfalls pause, then continue downward. Oh well, I think, so much for hiding what happened to us.

We disengage from our embraces, though still staying close enough to keep our arms around each other’s shoulders or backs. I and the me I’ve been making out with move closer to the other two, and as we do so I become powerfully aware of something I’d been feeling the whole time—the same imperative connection is there with the other two as I felt with the one I was making out with. All four of us are erotically drawn to each other, to an almost overwhelming, mind-bending extent. I grab the brawny shoulder of the me in front of me in solidarity and feel the same rush of libidinous compulsion as I have with the me next to me, and the same with the remaining me as well. We all draw in closer, again almost instinctively, bodies pressed against bodies, huge rock-hard erections aching for release.

By this point Sheriff Kehoe has come into view and is now standing at the foot of the stairs, an inscrutable look on his face. He’s a fit, middle-aged man who looks like the ex-special forces veteran he is, now ensconced in a well-earned semi-retirement as a country sheriff. We’re waiting for his reaction, but… actually, we’re not too worried. If I know one thing about Kehoe, it’s that he’s a roll-with it kind of guy.

Kehoe looks around, shrewdly taking in the scene. We watch as he notes the table with the laptop next to him, the mystical pattern drawn on the dark tiles at our feet, the break in the design that had ended the portal spell, and the cluster of four very aroused identical deputies standing before him. He seems to just let his mind process it all for a few seconds. Finally he drawls, “Looks like we just solved our deputy shortage. Even brought your own guns and uniforms, so that’s a help. This got the video you were talking about?” he adds, tilting his chin toward the laptop. We nod, grinning.

Our state of extreme arousal has to be beyond obvious, of course, and I can see from the glint in Kehoe’s eyes that he’s characteristically amused by it. He points at one of us at random. “You,” he says, “take a half hour for ‘lunch’”—he manages to invoke the air quotes without actually making them with his fingers—”then meet me back at the base with the laptop bagged as evidence. The rest of you, report in tomorrow. I’ll have figured out the paperwork and schedules by then.” Before we can even react to this he’s already turned and heading back up the basement stairs, muttering in a loud stage whisper about how only “Sexyface” could manage to make himself even more distracting.

We burst out laughing, and trade a few soft kisses between the four of us before we’re clomping quickly upstairs to find the beds—our beds, if Shoulders Guy was on the level about the house and the deed. Either way, we’ve only got half an hour to have the first best sex ever of our new lives together, and we’re sure as fuck going to make the most of it.

4,075 words Added Aug 2021 4,093 views 5.0 stars (3 votes)

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