Authors: Piers Anthony
The Metal Maiden Collection
To Be a Woman, Shepherd, Fly Trap,
is the merging of four novellas:
To Be a Woman, Shepherd, Flytrap,
. Together they form a full length novel in four parts. Each has its own protagonist, starting with Banner Thompkins who meets and comes to love the fembot, or humanoid female sex robot Elasa, and helps her as she achieves consciousness and makes her legal case to become a recognized person. Part Two features Shep Shepherd, a man of Earth who travels to Colony Jones by exchanging identities with a native there; Shep is then preempted for duty as a shepherd by telepathic sheep who also enlist a vulture, a python, and an elf girl, Elen. This is not what he signed up for, and it is a dangerous journey, but the sheep know what to do. By the time they are done, Shep and Elen are in love and married, and with Elasa’s help are able to save the sheep from destruction. Part Three has Elasa’s friend Mona Maverick visiting the colony planet in transfer and having a fair adventure of her own, including raising a telepathic lamb and birthing Elen’s baby. Part Four is Elasa, on a mission to save Earth from an exceedingly ugly threat: being literally consumed by gross space-faring maggots. Elasa must work with the remarkable folk called Awares as well as the sheep and a carnivorous plant to try to resist the conquest and digestion of the planet. Overall it is a wild and far ranging science fiction adventure, with sex an integral tool throughout. Not for the squeamish. The four original Author’s Notes have been merged and edited to eliminate repetition.
To Be a Woman
Banner Thomkins studied the ad. FEMDROID CALL GIRL. FIRST SESSION FREE. GUARANTEED PERFECT SEX. YOU CAN’T TELL HER FROM A REAL WOMAN. Plus the contact information.
He knew what they meant. A femdroid was a female android, a robot in the form of a woman, used for sex. A sexbot. Most folk sneered at the very notion, but it was said that the sex machines were getting phenomenally realistic. This ad claimed that he would not know she was a machine, if not told. Maybe so, maybe not. But the price of the sample was right. He could afford it.
Banner pondered. Did he really want to do this? The fact was that he was just eighteen, without a girlfriend, and the only interpersonal sex he could get was from prostitutes, and he didn’t much like the risk of venereal disease or embarrassment. A fembot might alleviate both concerns.
What the hell. He called the number.
“Yes, it is true,” the clerk’s voice said. “We will bring her to your home, and the sample is free. Thereafter it will be charged, same as any other service.”
“Maybe I should come to the shop and look at her first,” he said cautiously.
“We don’t have a shop in this area yet,” she said. “Home service is all we can provide, until we get locally established. I assure you, we are discreet.”
Banner wasn’t entirely easy with this, but it seemed he was either in or out. “Okay,” he said, and gave his address.
In forty minutes a van marked SPECIAL DELIVERY arrived. Two women got out: a portly older one, and a pretty younger one hauling a heavy box. Banner watched them from a window. Could this be the fembot in the box?
The older woman rang the doorbell. “I am Shesa Pomade of Femdroid, Inc. We talked.”
“Uh, yes,” he agreed, feeling awkward.
“This is Elasa. She’s learning the business so that later she’ll be able to do it on her own. Just let her get the box inside and we’ll be in business.”
“Uh, yes,” he agreed again. “Come in.”
Shesa explained things as the girl hauled the box inside and opened it. “Our robots are advancing rapidly, but still need some direction. After the first session, this one will be keyed in and better able to perform alone.”
“Uh, yes,” he said a third time, as Elasa hauled arms, legs, head, and torso from the box and began putting them together. The torso was robustly female, with a narrow waist, broad hips, and prominent breasts. This was evidently the femdroid. But if they thought he wouldn’t know her from a living woman, they were delusional.
“I hope you don’t mind my presence,” Shesa continued. “I am familiar with this robot, and know how to make her perform. She might mess it up on her own. This is the cheap model that lacks any personal initiative; she has to be told exactly what to do. Future models will be self animating. But this one can do the job, when competently directed.”
Banner nodded, embarrassed to admit that he did mind. What had he gotten himself into?
“This is the release form, a formality. Sign here.”
Soon the femdroid was all together, her parts merging seamlessly so that she did indeed resemble a sleeping naked woman. She was a very shapely mannequin, or perhaps womannequin, with lovely brown hair falling to her breasts.
“Good enough,” Shesa said briskly. “Now activate her.”
Elasa brought out a small control box and pressed a button. Nothing happened.
“Check the battery pack,” Shesa said impatiently.
Elasa opened a panel in the front of the mannequin by catching the inner margins of her breasts and swinging them outward. Inside was some scorched wiring.
“Damn!” Shesa swore. “It shorted out and we didn’t catch it! Don’t you know that’s part of the checklist?
The girl shook her head no. She was evidently in trouble.
“We’ll have to fetch a replacement battery pack from the van.” Shesa looked hard at the girl. “You did load one?”
Elasa looked crestfallen. She shook her head.
“You forgot to load it?” Her tone was dangerous.
Elasa seemed on the verge of tears.
“That’s all right,” Banner said, privately relieved. He also felt sorry for the girl, who was pretty. The kind he had never managed to date.
all right,” Shesa fumed. “We came here to deliver a service, and we’ll deliver it. We’ll just have to make do with what we have.”
Banner tried to smooth things over. “But without the robot--”
“Elasa, you’ll have to service him yourself.”
The girl pointed her finger at her bosom. Her?
“You see any other nubile young women here? Who didn’t run the full checklist? Who forgot to load a replacement battery pack? He sure as hell won’t want sex with
.” She turned to Banner before he could speak. “Do you?”
“Oh, no.” She was hardly appealing as a prospect. But he hadn’t meant to get the girl in trouble. “Still--”
“Strip,” Shesa told the girl. “You’re the backup now.”
Elasa nodded, seeing the way of it. She surely needed this job, and had to do what it took to save it. She opened her shirt, revealing upstanding bra-less breasts.
Banner was about to protest further, but the sight mesmerized him. He stood transfixed as she dropped her skirt and stood in her panties. She was as well shaped as the mannequin!
“Turn around in place,” Shesa said.
Elasa did so, her full breasts gently bouncing and her full buttocks flexing under the cloth as she moved. Who needed a robot!
“Will she do?” Shesa asked him.
“Well, yes, but--”
“We do apologize for this emergency substitution, but will do our best to leave you completely satisfied. Will you take her on the couch?”
How could he protest further? His burgeoning erection was struggling manfully to punch through his trousers. Suddenly he wanted this girl very much despite his sympathy for her situation. “I guess.”
“Doff your panties,” Shesa directed the girl. “Lie face up on the couch.”
Elasa dropped her panties and stood for a moment with her delicate pubic hair showing. She was the very picture of man’s desire. Maybe she wasn’t very smart, so this was the only job she could get, but hell, she didn’t need brains for this. She went to the couch and lay on her back.
“Go to it,” Shesa told Banner.
What could he do? He was so aroused he hardly cared any more that this was a semi-public display. Sex with a machine was one thing, but sex with this luscious girl was so much more. So there was a witness; so it was because of this witness the girl was doing it. He could either take it or leave it, and he sure didn’t want to leave it. He stripped, letting his member stand proudly upright.
“Now there are some cautions,” Shesa said in a businesslike tone. “The robot is virtually indestructible.” She grimaced. “Apart from a bad battery. But you will have to treat Elasa as a more delicate creature. No violence, no biting, no vulgar words, just kissing, holding, and penetrating. She’s a woman.”
“Yes,” Banner agreed with guilty eagerness.
“Elasa, I will direct you as if you are the femdroid,” Shesa said. “So you won’t have to do any thinking for yourself. It’s simply part of your working day. But it won’t hurt if you act a trifle artificial, emulating the robot, so it’s almost as if he is getting what he expected. Do you understand?”
Elasa nodded mutely.
Excited as he was, Banner still had a care for her feelings. “Elasa, you don’t really have to do this. I can wait another day for the femdroid.”
“Oh, but she wants to,” Shesa said quickly. “For the sake of our commitment. Don’t you, Elasa?”
The girl nodded again.
Banner knew that this might simply mean that Elasa didn’t want to get fired for forgetting the backup battery pack. She surely would not forget it again! This was her punishment, a hard lesson. But she had technically assented. He had at least made his offer.
He approached her, hoping there would not be a last-moment change of heart.
“Raise your knees,” Shesa said to the girl. “Spread your thighs. Show him your cleft.”
Elasa obeyed in the manner a robot might. Oh, those firm open thighs looked good! That cleft was perfect!
Banner joined her on the couch, positioning himself between her legs. He supported himself with one hand and used the other to feel her breasts. They were exquisite. He lowered himself and kissed her. Her lips were warm and soft, as was her whole body.
“Kiss him back,” Shesa said. Elasa did, putting more feeling into it. Just as if she were the fembot being coached.
Then he lifted himself, used his hand to set his member at her cleft, found the place, and slid on in about half way. Her vagina was slick and smooth and firm. She might have been surprised by this sudden requirement to give him sex, but maybe she wanted it too, because she was obviously ready.
“Wrap your arms about him,” Shesa said. The girl did, with a slight awkwardness of motion, still playing the role. “Gently raise your pelvis to take him in properly.” The girl did, so that he penetrated all the way.
Then Banner exploded into orgasm, thrusting and spurting with abandon. Elasa met him thrust for thrust and kiss for kiss, holding him close, exactly as if she had been programmed for this. It was one phenomenal climax.
Spent, he collapsed on her. “You were great!” he gasped. She gave him an acknowledging squeeze. She did like it!
They separated. “Clean him up,” Shesa said, and the girl produced a handkerchief and wiped Banner’s penis clean. “And yourself.” Elasa wiped her soaking cleft. She was playing the part of a femdroid perfectly.
They got up and dressed.
“Put away the machine,” Shesa said.
Elasa, ever dutiful, started disassembling the mannequin and packing the sections in the box.
“You are satisfied despite the mix-up?” Shesa inquired, knowing that he was.
“One more thing,” Shesa said. “There is a detail I omitted because I wanted to abate your possible prejudice against the femdroid.”
“I hope you won’t be angry.”
“How could I be angry? You, that is, Elasa, just gave me a better experience than I ever expected.” Better than he had ever had before, in fact.
“Did you notice that Elasa did not speak?”
“Well, she was caught by surprise. It must have been a real chore to have to do what she did, on such short notice. But she came through perfectly.”
“Did you notice that she wasn’t breathing?”
“No.” But now he looked at Elasa as she worked. She was moving, but her chest was not rising and falling. “I don’t understand.”
“The mannequin in the box is only a prop. Elasa is the real femdroid.”
Banner laughed. “Impossible! Why would you joke about a thing like that?” But there was a tinge of doubt.
She wasn’t breathing
“Elasa, open your front panel,” Shesa said.
The girl paused, opened her shirt, and touched her chest between her breasts. The two hemispheres swing outward on hinges, revealing a battery pack inside. Exactly as with the put-together mannequin.
Banner stared. The girl really was a robot!
“Elasa is a contraction of Electronic Associates, the manufacturer,” Shesa said. “Or, more bluntly, a mechanical whore.”
“Don’t call her that!”
The woman’s lip curled. “What, you think of her as a person?”
“Yes! Maybe not a living one, but a person. She should be treated with at least some modicum of respect.”
Shesa smiled. “I agree. Elasa is special.”
“Special,” he echoed.
“I directed her verbally so that she could properly accommodate you,” Shesa said. “But she is in the end a machine. You just had sex with the femdroid. Did you know the difference?”
“I didn’t,” Banner admitted. “You said I wouldn’t, and I didn’t. You certainly proved your point.”
“Would you use her again?”
He barely had to consider. “Yes. She was one great—partner.”
“Indeed she is. For your next tryst, if you prefer, I will wait in the car and you can direct her yourself. She will assume any position you desire, and accommodate any reasonable request, and many unreasonable ones. Her response vocabulary is limited to the basics, but you won’t be paying her for intellect, will you?”
“No,” he agreed faintly. Now he knew Elasa for what she was, yet found that he still liked her. She had given him what no living woman would: straightforward, nonjudgmental sex.
“Would you like to have her again, now, knowing what she is?”
“Yes!” he said without thinking. “I mean, I think I don’t really care that she’s a machine. She’s really good at--”
“Stop that! You’re demeaning her.”
She smiled again. “And you are defending her. I like you, Banner. Yes, she is good at sex, as she was designed to be. Body rather than brain. Take her now, while I haul the box out to the van. You have hardly seen the beginning of her ability.”
“Actually, right now I’m not sure—it’s so soon after--”
“Tell her to seduce you,” she said. “You may be surprised.” She heaved up the packed box and carried it out.
Banner gazed at Elasa. What the hell. “Elasa, seduce me,” he said.
She smiled. She took him by the hand. She stepped into his embrace and kissed him languorously. He felt his body reacting despite its sexual depletion. She was one nice creature to hold.
She took his hand and set it on her pert posterior. Then she passed it down under her short skirt and up to her pantied buttock. Then she slid his fingers under that panty. She pressed his fingers to make them knead her supple flesh.
His penis stirred. How could it do otherwise?
She drew down her panties under the skirt, and brought his hand to her cleft. She took his middle finger and threaded it into her warm moist vagina.
His penis thickened and stiffened.
She backed off slightly, then got efficiently out of her clothing. She unbuttoned his shirt, then loosened his trousers. Soon they both were naked.
She led him back to the couch. She pushed him gently so that he sat down. Then she sat on his lap and kissed him again. She reached down to take his penis in her hand, massaging it into further life. When it did not respond fully, she got off him, knelt before him, put her face to his crotch, and took his member into her mouth. She sucked and tongued it. In seconds she had it rigid. Then she pushed him down on the couch on his back, and bestrode him. Soon she had him in her again, and this time her vagina was not passive, it was peristaltically active, evoking his rising feeling and then his full-fledged orgasm.