Disclaimer: These stories are NOT I repeat NOT made by me. They're made from a user who no longer contributes as far as I know, from an old Yahoo group.
Be My Valentine/Lara,
by Py, © 12/11/2001,
1. The voluptuous actress came home from a hard day’s work at the studio. The special effects guys on the sequel were really working her hard. Distance shots could be a stunt double, but close ups either had to be her or a virtually identical body double, especially considering the form fitting outfits she usually wore over her hourglass shape during the movie. She had learned to do most of her own stunts, this cost the movie makers more for safety measures, plus planning to shoot around her while she recovered from any injuries. But the audience ate it up and the studio was thrilled, as long as every precaution was taken. Computers and blue screen helped enormously, allowing for flying debris which would normally cut her to pieces if the stunt were shot live. Still, it was fun to be Lara Croft, to go through a scene and kick butt with various weapons or fighting skills, not depending on someone to save her. She managed to work out a lot of frustration during rehearsals or sometimes actual filming, imagining the bad guy was whoever she was most mad at recently, such as her agent, director, or weasel old boyfriend.
Of course their were the fringe benefits also, getting paid to learn how to fight with various trainers, and learning all sorts of weapons from guns to high tech equipment, traditional swords, arrows, etc., getting paid to stay in shape, doctors watching her every health concern, a new home and car, and lots of adoring fans, etc.. The difficult parts were the autographs, the hiding out to have dinner at a restaurant, the disguises just to travel, or the occasional bomber threat or stalker making the fans as bad a thing as good. Then there were the PR things, most of them were okay such as doing the talk shows, but some were annoying, and maintaining her figure was more important than ever now. It was no longer just a good idea, but part of the character. The large breasts and hips were easy to maintain, the thin waist was the tough part. On Talk shows she always got big cheers and hoots from studio audiences, and the hosts were good, but too often she had to show off either her figure or do a stunt. Nothing too dangerous of course, usually beating up a few men the talk show hired. And of course, sometimes she had to show up in costume as Lara Croft ready to kick butt for a planned demonstration, one time having it thrown at her as a surprise. She couldn’t very well refuse and look wimpy, so had to kick off her heals and kick butt while in a black dress with an ankle length skirt, fortunately with high slitted sides so she could move.
She is fully aware of the problems many develop in hollywood, identifying with a fictional character so much as to begin to think and become them, especially if their character is strong. Already she felt the pull, beginning to think like Lara Croft, thus becoming her at least sometimes. Being a big name, at least for now, helped her to look into this phenomenon quietly, although discovery was a reporter away. The internet made it easy to be anonymous though. Through her net connections she had talked to a number of other celebrities with similar problems, including the actresses who played Xena, Elvira, and a few others, and even a small time celebrity impersonator who specialized in the 60’s Batgirl. She actually had met this last one at a restaurant, and they had talked over lunch at her place after the limo driver ditched the reporters that had spotted her. The conclusion she had come to, it was okay to let your character have an influence in your personality, even be that character occasionally, as long as it didn’t take over your life.
The part that bothered Lara was that many of the people she had spoken to talked of a recent terrible nightmare, one that they wouldn’t talk in detail about, and how similar nightmares had continued to reoccur since. The Batgirl impersonator had been the only one to go into more detail, but saying only that in her dream she had been killed in her own home by a giant rubber toy snake named Kaa, after in real life receiving it in the mail as a Thanksgiving gift from an unknown person. The whole thing had seemed too strange, and had made Lara skeptical although she had hidden it, but not so much since a huge mysterious crate had been delivered to her today. The card on top said, ‘Be My Valentine, A Friend.’. Who was this friend, she had called around and learned nothing, not even the delivery company would talk. “So, I open it and there’s a big rubber snake inside, right?!” she said to herself then opened the box with a crowbar. Sure enough, a huge green and black rubber snake toy was curled up inside, at least 30 feet long she guessed, and over 35 if the stories she had gathered were correct. Lara opened the lid wide, then put the crowbar on the floor of her private gym. A few minutes later she returned with a good sized gun in hand and machete on her belt, “Okay, if that’s your game, let’s dance Kaa!”
Two minutes later Lara was feeling kind of silly. Nothing had come out of the box, peeking in the snake hadn’t moved a muscle. She briefly dug inside, the fingerless mitt on one hand blocking some of her feeling of the toy snake. With some effort she pulled the entire snake out and laid most of it on the fine wood floor, and some on the mat which covered most of it. She considered cutting off Kaa’s head, but convinced herself that such would be ridiculous, and she wouldn’t give in to such stupid fears. A small part of her protested greatly though, and this kept her alert at least.
Lara was dressed in denim shorts and a dark blue tank top, her outfit for today’s movie work. Later she might need to show up somewhere, she had no date tonight, so would make the best of having time to herself. Relaxing her guard a bit Lara left the gun and machete on a small table near the crate. Then kicking off her sneakers she went onto the mat area and began her workout. First she began with standing stretches of her limbs, then some simple rolling, splits, walking on her hands, limbering her body and warming her muscles. Then she graduated to the balance beam, vaulting the horse, the uneven parallel bars, some boxing with a large punching bag and gloves, then working a small punching bag suspended at about her head’s height, rapidly hitting it and keeping it in constant motion. After that she did a little jump rope, back to the big bag for some kick boxing, and then some martial arts kicking, throwing, and punching with a dummy she called Ralph.
She was working up a sweat, her long dark brown hair sticking to her shoulders and neck, so Lara grabbed a towel to dry her hands with, then began climbing a rope which dangled from a hook in the ceiling 20 feet above her. Using her arms to pull herself up a short distance, then resting her weight on her legs which were twined securely in the rope, she slowly inched her way up. First one hand, then the other, then pull her body up and move her legs entwining them again, and she slowly inched her way to the top. Her agent hated when she did anything like this, the uneven bars, the hoops, or anything where she might fall and get hurt, especially when she was alone like this. However Lara was confident in her abilities, and the matting was thick and took the worst of any falls. In the past she had sprained ankles and wrists, but had never broken a bone or otherwise seriously hurt herself.
From her height she looked down at Kaa. The huge green and black snake lay roughly in a circle, it’s center obviously much thicker than it’s ends. Lara had only vaguely noted the head being bigger than her own, and it’s middle about a foot or more across. It was very realistic looking, except the head and face which was not quite normal, and not quite the cartoon Kaa. When she lifted parts of it, the segments of body had not been stiff but instead moved as a real serpent might, and although it was hollow the walls were thick enough to avoid easily indenting. So, in all ways it seemed like a real snake, except it’s texture was unmistakably rubber. Not at all like a stiff rubber car tire, but clearly rubber. Someone had paid a lot to have it made, so who the hell had sent it to her was the question.
With all these thoughts running through her mind Lara began her way down. Her arms ached from the rope climbing, even her legs protested. As her muscles complained more than usual, Lara became aware that today perhaps she should have skipped the rope climbing. Still 15 feet in the air Lara lost her grip with her hands, her legs trying to hold her in place. However the weight of her body as it went downward, combined with the fatigue in her legs, made them also pull free of the rope. She screamed briefly, then all was quiet as she struck the mat with a thud.
2. Lara wasn’t sure how long she had been unconscious, but woke to someone yanking on her leg. She rolled with a small groan, then scooted back in sudden wide eyed alarm. Kaa released her foot from his jaws, “Are you alright? That was quite a fall you took.” Lara had managed to move backwards on her rump a considerable distance before being stopped by the large punching bag behind her. “Please, try standing.” Kaa said in his smooth voice which seemed to come straight from the cartoon. His innocent request, plus being stopped briefly in her escape, and wanting to get away faster, all combined to make Lara try to stand. Almost immediately she fell back to the mat. Now she became more aware of a pain in her left ankle and wrist. The wrist wasn’t too bad though, and with effort and using the large punching bag to cling to she stood. Once on her feet remaining upright required Lara to favor her bad foot, but she was able to limp along.
At first Lara kept away from Kaa, but he made no threatening moves. There was something about Kaa she had learned lately and was supposed to remember, she knew that much but couldn’t think of it. She had no idea how fast snakes could move if she were beyond Kaa’s striking range, but guessed he was easily fast enough to catch a limping Lara. However, she was quickly losing her fear, something about Kaa’s eyes and voice were so soothing. “Why don’t you have a seat and tape up that ankle.” Kaa said calmly. “It’s distressing when foo, I mean someone has an injury.” It seemed like a good idea, and Lara limped over to a small padded armless couch near the wall. Lara lost track of Kaa on her journey, but shortly after she sat down his head popped up next to her. In Kaa’s mouth he held the handle of a small box with a large red cross on it taken from under her seat, and he placed it next to her on the couch. “Why thank you!” Lara said sweetly. Kaa seemed to look at the ground, “Oh, least I can do before,,... Say, mind if I check out your gym?” Feel free.” replied Lara as she opened the first aid kit.
This was very strange thought Lara, here she was bandaging and taping her ankle, while watching a huge rubber snake checking out her exercise equipment. She did her work slowly, partly to be sure to do it right, partly to have time to see what Kaa did next. He checked out the large punching bag, the vaulting horse, and the parallel bars which Kaa seemed to like as he wound from one to the other like the branches of a tree. She was concerned for him over by the weights, then realized that concern was an odd response. Somehow Lara knew that she should be scared witless, and thought perhaps it was just shock from her fall and the pain of her injuries. But regardless, it was hard to be scared of Kaa, especially while watching him playing like a child.
Lara stood cautiously. Her ankle hurt, but not too badly now, similar taping of her wrist had also helped. When she walked Lara still had a limp, but she could manage. Her agent was going to be pissed though, not to mention the movie people. However she still felt a bit indignant, they also wanted her to stay in shape, and how could she without working out, and this accident would have happened even with someone here to help her.
Lara was beginning to feel a bit nervous again, something she was supposed to remember which she had learned recently nagged at the back of her mind, and she slowly edged over towards the door. She heard Kaa’s voice “Don’t leave yet, come over here.” Lara stopped dead, turned and felt compelled to go to him. That odd voice in the back of her mind screamed for her to stop, but she couldn’t help limping over towards Kaa. The serpent was elevated, most of his body entwined on the uneven parallel bars, his front 3rd and head passing through several sets of large hoops suspended from the roof by chains. The hoops were above her hand height to allow her to jump and grab 2, then swing and work her arm muscles, normally a male exercise but she used them occasionally. Kaa was straddling all 3 sets of large hoops which each varied only in height off the floor by a few inches. Segments of Kaa hung down, and the hoops moved slightly as his body did.
His head came down to look her in the eye, “Nice equipment you’ve got here, but playtime is over, time to eat.” Lara backed away a step, “Eat, I can get you a sandwich or something.” “Or something sounds good.” Kaa replied. “Don’t move.” Kaa said in a somewhat stern tone. Lara tried, finding it hard to disobey Kaa, almost as if hypnotized. The first problem was just wanting to move, something in her wanted to obey Kaa. The other problem was her body, try as she might Lara only managed to move her feet a few inches. She understood now that this was no game, and Kaa had nothing good up his sleeve, that is if he had possessed sleeves he’d have had nothing good up them. Right now Lara knew she had to get control of her body before Kaa struck. As it was her exercise hoops were buying time, Kaa was having difficulty reaching her, he couldn’t just slide off them like a branch. Kaa was like a thread through the eye of several needles, and he had to back out of some or push through. “Damn things!” Kaa muttered as he began to back out, the hoops moving and swinging with him making it difficult.
By the time Kaa had been able to back his head and front section out of 2 hoops, Lara had managed to take a few steps backward. She was too close to his head though in her opinion, and her movement kept her passing alongside his length. “Where do you think your going?” Kaa said as he looked back at her. “Away from you!” Lara replied sharply. Kaa talked in a playful tone, “Oh my, she’s getting away from me, and I’m stuck in these rings while she limps backward past the parallel bars.” Lara had no time to react as part of Kaa’s rear half fell upon her, and she barely kept from falling as a coil formed around her waist. She screamed and tried to pry it off with no luck, and another coil formed around her chest. The squeezing didn’t begin immediately, Kaa didn’t want to try that while backing himself out of the rings. Finally he was out though, most of his weight looped over one of the 2 uneven parallel bars, while 2 coils hung down from the higher bar to hold Lara. Quickly he dropped more of his length down to ensnare her, catching one upper arm also in the process.
Lara gasped as she stood there and the coils grew tighter. She tried to pushed the larger one crossing her chest away with no luck. As her breaths became smaller due to the coils relentlessly growing tighter at each exhale, her lungs began to ache and limbs began to tingle from lack of air. Her legs grew weak, she wanted to fall, but Kaa was holding her upright. Then a new coil formed around her legs, and he lifted her off the floor. She lay suspended in midair under the large parallel bar, almost horizontally as if in a hammock, except this hammock was steadily squeezing the breath out of her.
Kaa slowed his constriction, letting Lara linger in his grip while pulling many small rapid breaths, then when she was on the point of passing out he loosened his grip. Still held by Kaa and suspended over the floor Lara sucked in air greedily, sluggishly beating on him a few times with her gloved hand, then called for help in a weak voice. Kaa began constricting again, Lara’s feet kicking a little but Kaa held her legs just above the knees. Again her breaths grew short, her body began screaming for air., and once more Kaa relaxed his grip before she passed out.
Lara sucked in some air, and shortly managed to squeak out, “You like to toy with your victims, so why not let me go and chase me.” Kaa moved his head close, “Now why should I do that?” Lara coughed, “Make me think I have a chance, maybe I can get away. How fast can a limping woman who’s oxygen starved get?!” Kaa considered, “Hmmm, hope first then despair when I catch you, it would make things more interesting, and a bit more flavorful.” After some thinking Lara found herself released and dropped to the mat, “I’ll give you 20 seconds.” Kaa announced.
For a couple of seconds after her fall Lara simply sucked in air, then she crawled to a vertical bar and used it to rise to her feet. As she stood Kaa looked her in the eye, his body shifting for a fast pursuit, “15 seconds, better get moving.” Lara turned and limped for the nearest door, having trouble just standing at this point so moving slowly. “here I come!” Kaa announced, which spurred her into moving faster. Five steps later Lara was knocked down, huge coils rolling her as they encircled her weakly struggling and screaming form. Again the slow constriction, the coils growing tighter with each exhale. Her mouth hung wide as she lay on her belly gasping for air, then Kaa rolled her to her side as his grip tightened.
Finally with her chest unable to expand for air, Kaa released her again, “That was fun, how about 40 seconds this time. Lara coughed and barely moved for the first 10 seconds. Kaa sighed, “Maybe your almost ready to be food, you’ve already wasted 10 seconds. Coughing, Lara got to her hands and knees and began crawling, her long dark brown hair hanging to either side of her head and neck. She briefly considered trying to stand again, but thought the effort would be better spent crawling towards the door. Once there she could crawl through, then slam it behind her and be safe. Almost to the edge of the mat Lara heard what she dreaded, “Ready or not, here I come.”
Lara tried to put on a burst of speed, but was caught at the mats edge, finding herself hit in the back by lengths of Kaa which quickly encircled her, and rolled her away from the door. Lara weakly struggled, her hands and elbows remaining free and striking wood. “So close.” she thought to herself. Kaa looked down on her half sitting form as Lara tried to escape his coils, “Yes, that was fun, but your very tired and we’re close to the door, I must finish you now.”
3. Lara was gasping in the tightening grip of Kaa, turning and twisting with more last minute strength than the rubber snake expected at this point. Still, her struggles were feeble, and growing weaker by the second. Lara found one of the armless couches and tried to drag herself up, then felt around the table next to it, desperately gasping while feeling for anything. Kaa sighed, “You don’t give up, do you? I like that, but don’t you think enough is enough.” “Not... quite... gasp.” Lara managed to say. Then she turned, sliding to her rump, raising the gun to Kaa’s head and into his mouth. “Oh shit!” Kaa said in a muffled voice, then a gunshot rang out and his head blew apart. The last thing Lara thought was that the tight coils wouldn’t relax in time, and she would die anyway, but at least Kaa would be dead.
Some time later Lara’s agent came to her home, disturbed by repeatedly getting no answer to the phone, and knowing the actress was home. Getting no answer but seeing her car in the driveway, he broke in. He found the actress unconscious on the floor, and after verifying that she was alive, he immediately called for help. The emergency unit took her to the hospital, the police checked everything, questioning the agent extensively on what he saw and what he moved or touched.
Lara woke in the hospital, the dream somewhat unclear at first in her mind. The doctor’s pronounced her fine, but they couldn’t explain her fainting spell, nor the funny bruising on her body. They kept her at the hospital overnight for observation though, then sent her home with pills for her pain. Reporters were all over the story, and Lara told them only that she had fainted in her private gym. She never told them of the giant rubber snake which came to life, nor of the police taking it away. She couldn’t understand it all herself, in her dream Kaa had tried to kill her, and in real life the giant rubber toy snake hadn’t moved a muscle, still laying right where she had left it after removing it from the crate. That much made sense to her, but what didn’t make sense was how Kaa’s head looked like it had blown apart from the inside. She remembered doing that in the dream, yet her gun was fine, all the bullets were in the chambers according to the policewoman who took it for evidence.
Lara dismissed it all as a weird dream, the police thought that maybe an explosive device in the snake’s head had gone off knocking her out, but at her request and with no signs of an explosive, they agreed to give the press no comment. Nobody noticed over the next few months, that dozens of people who had been plagued with bad dreams after Kaa’s visit, were now no longer bothered by them. Except of course the various psychiatrists, psychologists, and best friends that had been listening to their problems, but not knowing of other similar cases they failed to make a connection.
In the cartoon world the woman known as Sheena, dressed in her usual one piece leopard skin outfit, her long blonde hair as well maintained as ever, sat on a rock in the jungle. Her knife was out as she whittled a long stick she was making into a spear, as her ears caught the faint gasping sounds of the woman struggling in Kaa’s coils a short distance away. Sheena sliced a twig off the stick, “So, haven’t seen you around here for a while, where have you been? One of the other jungles, maybe the one bordering that beach where you can usually find easy pickings?” Kaa tightened his coils a bit as his tall blonde prey with the large eyes and mouth exhaled, “No, I found a wizard to put me into a toy snake in the real world. I was trying to gather enough energy to stay by stealing it from people’s dreams. Y’know, victims experience great fear and often death in the dreams, and I feed on the released energy.” “So, what happened?” Sheena asked with a shrug. Kaa hung his head, “My last victim blew my head off when I was trying to make the psychic connection! With my dream self destroyed, it threw me back here, broke all the psychic links I had already made, not to mention damaged the object I had taken over so I can’t return until I locate a suitable replacement. How many giant snake objects do you think are in the real world for me to take over, not many let me tell you! And getting control of minds in the beginning to set up the whole delivery thing wasn’t easy either.”
Sheena sighed and tested the balance of the stick she was making into a spear, “You should try to be happy here, I don’t see your problem with this place, at least it’s safe. If we die eventually someone draws us again and we’re back. Even if they don’t draw us we seem to come back after a while.” Sheena pointed, “Like that one there your planning to eat, she’ll be back sooner or later, as good as new.” Kaa sighed as the muscles rippled making his coils contract a bit more, “Yes, it’s convenient that way, sorta like chinese food in reverse, after a while you can eat the same victim again.” “If it weren’t for that, and the fact I’m off duty today, I’d have to stop you. I am a heroine Y’know.” Kaa squinted, “You really think you could save her, I think I could kill both of you at the same time.” Sheena laughed lightly, “You wish, I’m queen of the jungle, you wouldn’t stand a chance! But, lucky for you it is my day off!” “How convenient.” Kaa drawled sarcastically.
Sheena furrowed her brow, then continued her work with the spear, tossing it up a few times before whittling some more, “So, where did you get her, didn’t you just get back.” “I was hungry.” Kaa replied. “getting kicked out of the real world takes it’s toll. I found this one in the bar where all the Japanese anime characters hang out, she’s some sort of scientist’s gorgeous but somewhat brainless daughter.” Kaa relaxed his grip to let his latest victim breathe a bit, and after some renewed struggling he began to squeeze the breath out of her again. Sheena shook her head, “Playing with your food again, hasn’t anyone told you that’s a nasty habit?!” “Occasionally.” Kaa replied. Sheena stood and threw her spear into the nearby bushes, “Not bad.” Kaa raised his head and looped some of his free coils on the ground, “Still room for one, and I really could use the energy.” Sheena’s eyes grew wide and her pupils became small points as she stared into Kaa’s swirling gaze, then she dropped her knife and casually walked into Kaa’s coils. Kaa secured Sheena in his muscular loops of serpent length, then released his hypnotic grip of Sheena as his coils grew tight around her, “Nothing personal, I just need to eat, and as they say, you can’t eat just one.”