WINNER OF THE 2016 COYOTL AWARD FOR BEST NOVELLA
The Goat: Building The Perfect Victim is a Romance for Sadists, a Comedy for Sociopaths.
Frank was a high school bully but he always paid special attention to Glenn. Now, with his wife gone on yet another separation, Frank is trying to deal with a mid-life crisis that has been brewing for quite awhile. Glenn becomes Frank's new hobby... and eventually Frank is going to have to ask himself... which one of them is actually the victim in his new violent lifestyle.
The Goat explores magic and S&M. It contains adult elements.
Heat Level: 3
Romantic Content: 1
Ending: Click here to reveal
Character Identities: Bisexual, Gay
Protagonist 1 Age: 36-45
Protagonist 2 Age: 36-45
Tropes: Coming Out / Closeted, Gay for You / Straight to Gay, Moral Failure
Word Count: 40000
Setting: Alternate Magical NJ
Languages Available: English
On the garage floor, Glenn's pink human body began to twitch, then hitch as the skinny little guy tried to clear his throat. After all he'd been through I couldn't be mad at him anymore. He'd given himself to me, body and soul, and there was no going back, no matter what he believed.
Naked, he got himself up on his knees, then hands and feet. He tried hard to vomit, but nothing would come of it. His stomach flexed and clenched, but all he could do was spit out the things in his mouth. I stroked his hair softly and then slapped him on the back a few times. Then when he protested softly that he was ok, I sat him upright slowly and wiped his mouth off with a paper shop towel. "What happened?"
"You were too hot," I said, handing him some bottled water. "I should have waited for you to cool off before transforming you back."
Glenn drank from the bottle greedily, but he was still drained and a bit disorientated. "It worked? It worked?"READ MORE
I smiled and nodded. I stroked the back of his hair, wondering if I could get one for the road. "It worked. You were a beautiful brown Goat. We went for a nice long drive, don't you remember?"
Glenn began crying and shook his head, no. I held him, marveling at how fragile he now seemed. I kissed the top of his head gently. "I washed you, like I do sometimes."
Glenn sniffled. "You did? Why don't I remember?"
I smiled widely. "I did." I helped him to his hind legs... I mean feet. "You passed out, but I can fix that. I have wards that'll keep you aware... they'll only work when I am near you... when I am not you, you'll be mindless... I figure it'll be easier that way."
I could see the gears turning in his head. He wanted to get word out to North Star, to come rescue him. He didn't want to be totally mindless, but he would prefer that over being human. "Only when I am a goat, right?"
I had to laugh at that. "Yes, when you are human again, you'll never be more helpless than you are right now."
Glenn smirked gently at the playful tone in my voice and then nodded.
I cast the ward I'd been working on all week. It was rather simple, really. No matter the pain, Glenn would simply not pass out, nor would he go mad. It settled over the spell that permeated every last cell in his body and, as I promised, it would only become active when Glenn was transformed or being transformed.
He almost collapsed under its weight. "I never felt a ward like that before."
"It's an olden ward," I said casually, "used by torturers to keep the subject alive and awake as they were disemboweled."
Glenn smiled weakly. "Lovely. I think I used that ward in a rave once." He leaned into me and then kissed my chest gently. "Thank you. For everything."
"If you really want to thank me, you know how." And, indeed he did, moving down my chest with his lips and eager fingers. I knew he was truly grateful to me, just as I knew he thought he could still get away from me. I let him thank me and I did not rush him. I did allow my hand to grasp that sweet back of his skull and steer him where I wanted him to go.
It was something he was going to have to get used to.COLLAPSE
An impressive fable—clever and subversive. Kieffer's prose is playful, poetic and brutal in turns. Highly recommended.