The Castle of Count Shagula (Excerpt)
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The carriage pulled in to rest for the evening in the small village outside of the Borgo Pass, in the Carpathian Mountains.
It had been a long drive. We had long since moved from the great forests and grasslands and into craggy, wind-swept lands. The sunsets in this region of Europe were especially beautiful, painting the rocky climbs a deep russet hue. I had watched much of the landscape from the carriage window over the course of many days and nights, and was now feeling especially stiff.
While my driver took the time to arrange a room for the night, I wandered around to the back of the inn to relieve myself. I was glad for any chance to stretch my legs. Unfastening my trousers, I found a small wall by which I might unleash the fourth or fifth cup of tea I had drank on the length of the day’s journey when I heard a voice from behind me.
“Excuse me, sir,” the voice said. I turned around, only to see before me a heavenly figure. He held a single bale of hay slung across his broad, naked shoulders. His hair was a mess of straggled curls. As he looked at me, I felt my eyes unable to remove their gaze from his taught, muscled chest. “I do not know about in your native land,” he said, “but we have indoor plumbing here.”
I blushed, as I tended to do when confronted. “I’m sorry,” I said.
Dropping the bale of hay to one side, the youth approached me. He could be no more than twenty years old, but he still stood taller than me. God, I thought, they grow them big here in the borderlands of Romania. “Don’t be,” he said, his eyes running down over me. “You give me, how they say … a nice view to look at.”
My eyes widened, and I hurried to pull my organ back inside my trousers. “Oh!” I exclaimed. “Oh, oh, oh.”
A small frown crossed his lips. “And now the nice view is gone,” he said, as I tucked myself away. “Such a pity. Perhaps, though, I am being too forward.” He stuck his brawny hand out. “I am Raul.”
“Jonathan,” I said, grabbing his hand. I had to use both of mine to encircle his fully. I felt a rush of excitement fill me. If it were true what they say about the size of a man’s hands … I almost purred. “Jonathan Woodcock,” I said, “from England.”
“England?” said Raul, his eyebrows raising. “Such a long way to travel.”
“Yes,” I replied. “The journey has been long. Long and very hard.”
He nodded. “I know the feeling. I am also long and very hard.”
I looked down. My eyes widened. “That isn’t what I meant,” I said. “But, uhh…” I found it difficult to pull my eyes away. “What I mean is…” I bit my tongue. I didn’t know what I meant. No, if I am honest with myself, I did. Weeks of travel had left me longing, pining for my home. “I have been travelling for weeks, with only the most sparse and fleeting moments to relieve my, uhmm, anxieties.”
“Well, Mister Jonathan Woodcock, Englishman,” said Raul. “Perhaps I can relieve them for you tonight.”
I grinned. “Is this the normal way that visitors to this town are greeted?” I asked him. I stepped closer, pressed my body against his; I could feel his girth against my thigh.
He shook his head. His dirty brown locks of hair swayed as he did so. “No,” he said. “It is only with the evil machinations of the foul Count, who lives up on the hill.”
I blanched. “Count Shagula?” I asked.
A look of horror crossed Raul’s eyes. “You have heard of him?” he asked.
“We do not speak his name,” he said, “for to do so brings forth untold evil.”
“Oh,” I exclaimed. “Bit extreme, isn’t it?”
“No,” he said. “No, not at all. For months, he has travelled down to the village and enslaved our young men. He has chosen only the most handsome, the strongest, and the most — how do you say, I do not know the word…”
I tilted my head. “Which word?”
He pressed the palms of my hand against the bulge in his trousers. “The word for being large in the genitals,” he explained.
My mouth gaped. “Good God, man!” I exclaimed. “Is that a giant eel you have in there?”
He glanced down, a small frown crossing his lips. “You mock me, sir, for I am but the smallest of the village. In his wickedness, the evil Count Shagula has taken all my friends back to his castle on the hill!” he said. “There to serve his eager and never-ending sexual desires. Oh, can you imagine such a fate?”
“Uhm, no,” I said, my hands sliding down over the length at my fingertips, “can’t imagine it at all. You’re the smallest, you say?” I asked, my eyes growing quite wide. “Well, maybe I’ll see them when I get there.”
With a jolt, Raul pulled back. My fingers suddenly felt very lonely. “Oh, sir,” he said, “you mean to go to the castle?”
“Why, yes,” I said. “I have business there with the Count.”
“Oh, please!” said the young man. “You must not go! Great evil lurks within!”
I smiled, and leaned closer, trying to find my grip back onto his lively may-pole. “Ah, well, I wouldn’t worry about it.”
“No, sir!” he said, moving to grab my hands up in his own. He held them tightly. “It is too dangerous! The Count — his lustful ways will devour you too!”
I glanced downwards. The front of his work slacks resembled a big top at a circus, if the center pole was as tall as the Eiffel Tower. “I can manage,” I said. “I’m English, after all. You seem distressed, friend Raul. Perhaps a massage would ease your tension.”
His tight grip pulled my hands against his sublime chest. “Oh, Mister Jonathan Woodcock, you are a good man! Too good for this little village. Please, if you must go to the castle, let me first give you something nice.”
“Yes,” I spluttered and started to unfasten my trousers, “give it to me. Oh God, give it to me.”
With that, he turned and left.
I blinked. I stood there for a few moments, alone and confused. I watched the doorway through which he had left.
A few cock-softening-in-disappointment-moments later, Raul returned. My eyes lit up, but when I noticed what he was carrying, they clouded with confusion. “Here,” he said, p ushing a thick string of some kind of exotic vegetable into my hands. “Take these.”
I squinted, holding them up. “What on earth are these?” I asked.
“They are garlic,” he said.
I turned them back and forth in my hands. “Well,” I said, “they seem positively un-British.”
Raul looked at me. “They will protect you from the Count’s evil,” he said.
“Oh,” I said weakly. “Well, that’s nice.”
With that, he grabbed me and held me against him for a moment. Then he pulled me away from him. I flopped like an especially aroused rag doll in his grip. “Find my friends, Mister Jonathan Woodcock. Free them from the Count’s evil, and I promise that I will give you anything.”
“Anything?” I asked.
He grinned. “Anything.”
The night passed quickly, and in the morning I left the inn, the garlic packed safely in my luggage, ready once more to continue on my way through the mountains. I clambered into the carriage and, while the driver readied the horses, I found myself looking eagerly through the window, hoping to catch sight of the young stable-hand. Sadly, I could find no sign of him among the crowds of suspicious onlookers.
The day passed with aching slowness. With each rattle and bump of the carriage, a shudder of excitement passed through me. Lazily, I found myself dozing off to sleep a few times, my dreams full of fleeting memories of Raul, of his musky scent and powerful hands. I awoke to find that night had fallen and my dick was standing as high as the moon.
Reaching down, I wrapped my hands around my member. Just a quick one, I thought, before we arrive at the castle. I closed my eyes, thinking of Raul. I imagined myself being tossed down onto a bale of hay, the large man’s hands around me. I tightened my grip on my shaft. Slowly, steadily, I began to rub.
A rap on the door. “We have arrived” barked the carriage driver. She peered in through the window at me, her eyes glancing down at Jonathan Jr. “Button yourself up, Englishman.”
I gave a cry, jumping hard enough to hit my head against the roof.
Stumbling from the carriage, I almost tripped as I stepped down onto the dirty courtyard. I clutched my luggage in front of me, hiding my bulging erection.
Looking around, I could barely believe my eyes. The inside of the castle’s courtyard was a fascinating sight. Much like any of the old castles that dotted my English homeland, the Count’s Castle was rough stone, but, unlike those I had seen before, this one was filled with great, ornately-decorated archways, towering windows depicting bloody battles in stained glass, and, high above, twisted, carved stone creatures loomed. The moon hung high overhead, lighting the entire yard in an ethereal blue hue. Yet even in the pale light, I could see the decay that had set in the place. Many of the bricks were old, crumbled, and torn. Small, flittering bats fluttered high overhead. I was utterly fascinated by the entire view.
I walked onwards, through the courtyard. Brushing aside the stray rats and armadillos which wandered too close and sniffed at my shoe, I made my way up along a tall, stone staircase. There, in the great archway that led into the castle, I met my host, the lord of the great castle, Count Shagula.
For all of the age that seemed to fall upon the castle, none of it seemed to have fallen on the Count himself. He had a powerful, youthful appearance. If I were to hazard a guess, he could be no older than his mid-thirties, but he had the face of a man far younger than that. He looked at me through eyes under a sharp brow, his chin was strong and his skin as smooth as the moonlight.
“Ah, young Mister Woodcock,” said the tall Count, “I have been waiting for you to come.”
I blushed. “Thank you,” I said, “I’ve been waiting to come too,” I suggested, hoping that the count would not notice the evident bulge in my trousers.
“Yes,” he said in a thick, smooth accent, “if you like.”
He moved towards me, and I felt his slender fingers sliding my coat from my shoulders. His touch seemed to linger there against my shirt for a moment. I closed my eyes and tried not to think of the stable-boy from the village.
The Count took the coat from me and, with an elegant movement, hung it by the door. “You will, of course, stay for dinner?” he asked. “I know that it is late, but for such a valued guest, surely you will allow me this honor.”
I let myself glance around the great hall. Now that I was inside the gates, the grandiosity of the building could not be denied. But yet, the place appeared to be almost desolate. Carpets were tattered and threadbare and cobwebs lined the walls. It seemed that age had worn away much of the place’s splendor.
The Count moved elegantly, like a cat, inviting me to follow along behind him with his long fingers.
“I don’t want to impose,” I said, quietly.
“You do not,” said the Count, almost dismissive of the idea. “I rarely have guests, and I enjoy to play the host.”
Nodding, I said, “It must be quite lonely to live alone in this castle.”
Pausing in his step, the Count turned to me and shook his head. “No,” he said, “not alone. Not here in Castle Shagula, no, not alone.”
I waited for him to say something more, but he did not. “Oh,” I said.
He smiled to me. In the moonlight, I caught a hint of a shine to his teeth.
Grasping my luggage, I tugged it open and rummaged through its contents. “I have the papers that you requested,” I explained. “For the purchase of Carfax Abbey in England. All that remains is for them to be signed, and…”
The Count slid forward. I felt his fingertips brush against my cheek. “Later,” he said. I inhaled — his touch was cool; soft, like velvet, but electric. “Later,” he said, staring into my eyes. “First, dinner.”
I followed the Count obediently into the cavernous interior of the castle.
We walked up a tall staircase, and through a long and winding hallway flanked on both sides by great portraits that hung on the wall. My eyes were drawn to each in turn as we walked past them.
“Family,” said the Count, without glancing back at me. “They are the ancestors of my line. All gone, now.”
“Oh,” I said, hearing my footsteps echo down the great hallway as I walked.
“Yes,” replied the Count, “I am the last in the great Shagula line.”
I nodded, struggling to keep up. I hurried up to the man. “It’s a curious name,” I said, stuttering a little as I did. “I couldn’t find any reference to it in the history books.”
“We do not like to play an impact on the international stage,” he said. “But we have endured, until now.”
One portrait caught my eye. I paused, mid-step, staring at it. It depicted a man in great plate armour, standing against a battlefield. “My word,” I exclaimed, “he looks just like you.”
“Yes,” said the Count. “That is my great uncle Isban. They called him The Impaler.”
“He impaled people?” I asked.
“No,” said the Count, “He was just, how do you English say? Hung like a stallion.”
I blinked. “Oh,” I said.
The Count chuckled. “You need not worry, young Mister Woodcock. The great seed that ran through the Shagula line is all but dried up now, I’m afraid. I am the last of my line, and when I die, I fear that the dynasty will die with me.”
I tried to wonder if I should take the count seriously. I watched him for a moment. He certainly did cut a handsome figure, both aristocratic and dominating. The last, I thought, of a great line of shaggers. It was no wonder that there seemed to be such a great sense of sadness to him.
With a smile, the Count beckoned me onwards. “Come. Dinner waits,” he said. He turned and kept moving. I hurried down the hallway, hearing the echoing of my footsteps reverberating against the bare stone.
It was only then that I realized that the Count made no footsteps at all. And, as I looked closer, I realized that his feet did not seem to even touch the ground as he moved.
How, I wondered, had I possibly missed that?
Still, I hurried on after him. After all, I had been invited.
This excerpt is from "The Castle of Count Shagula" by Justin MacCormack, available on Amazon, Apple Books, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Smashwords. Or look for "Tales of Monsterotica: Anthology Collection Book 1" for this novella and two more of Jonathan Woodcock's adventures!
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The Castle of Count Shagula blurb:
High in the Transylvanian mountains looms Castle Shagula, the home of an infamous vampiric count with a thirst for the life fluid of young men. And Jonathan Woodcock is on his way there!
Stay beside Jonathan as he explores the terrors of Castle Shagula and experiences the horrors that go bang in the night. Can he can survive Count Shagula’s seductive attempts to get after his own different sort of life fluid? Witness as Jonathan works to uncover the mysteries at the heart of THE CASTLE OF COUNT SHAGULA. (It isn’t mysterious at all, really. It’s sex. Lots and lots of sex.)