You shift nervously, are you really going to go through with this? You glance at the slip of paper you've been holding. Its crinkled and a little damp from your sweat, but you can still read the address.
It's exciting and terrifying.
Nervous, you turn and look behind you; the hallway seems to stretch on forever into an inky darkness.
You start to sweat, your heart threatening to jump out your chest. This was a mistake you say to yourself.
The door, however, is open. You feel compelled forward, but you sneak a glance back down the hall. The yawning void has gotten closer.
You step into the room.
Your breath is ragged.
"This was a mistake."
The figure gestures for you to approach.
The steps up to the altar seem endless, but eventually you reach the figure.
Their voice sounds like chiming mixed with sweet honey.
"I am the great Marquis, Orias and you mortal, I know your Name. It is good that you have come ____"
Orias laughs. "Mortal, it is only your Name. Calm yourself and tell me why you're here in my demense."
"You seem to know already, so why are you asking me?"
Orias approaches you and places a sharp obsidian nail against the bottom of your chin, lifting it and forcing you to look into their eyes.
"Because, dear ____ you have to say it."
Orias drags their nail against your throat. "Speak, ____, or I will take that useless tongue of yours."
"I want to change. I want to be different than I am."
Orias wipes a finger over your wound as they remove their hand from your throat. The bleeding has stopped.
"A friend of mine. They were so... they were similar to me and one day they completely changed-
Orias continues to watch you intently.
"So I asked him how, he gave me the address for this place and. Well... here I am."
You swallow hard and lay on the altar. Orias looms over you.
"You didn't properly answer my question earlier. Why, exactly are you here?"
You feel something cold snake over your limbs and neck.
You try to move, but Orias plunges their nails into your thigh. "I told you to speak, not..." they press their nails deeper "struggle."
"That isn't an answer!"
Orias tries to close their fist inside your flesh. You scream.
"Still not an answer, speak, mortal!"
Tears roll down your face. "I, I hate my body." A sob wracks your form.
Orias pulls their hand from your thigh, it should hurt, but it doesn't.
"I should have been a girl, not this." Tears flow down your face."
You return the embrace. "When he came back in, in the body he wanted... I had hope."
Orias is surprisingly warm as they rub your back.
"I'm glad you came."
Orias hugs tightly for a moment "Yes, but I require payment. A pint of blood now and your presence within my estate when you pass on. Do not worry, Pandaemonium is much nicer than those slanderers paint it."
You think, not long, but you still pause to think before speaking. "I accept."
"Good, now lay back so we may begin."
Orias smiles down at you. "You are to speak on what changes you want, be honest with yourself"
Orias is a master artisan and follows your desires perfectly. During the process you tell stories of your lives, your time growing up and in college. The two of you laugh and commiserate throughout it all.
"Sweet mortal, do be careful... or do you wish to join me in my home so soon?"
You smile back at them. "No, not yet."
You take the garments graciously and dress yourself. "Orias, is there anything I can do to for you?"
Through a haze of lust you nod and head to leave. Others can have this too, you'll see that they do.