[pov: nb, but some implied afab]

“Hm?” She glanced down, her expression vague and coy. “Oh, I’m sorry. Would you like one, too?”

Marie blinked. Twice. “Oh, um, I’m s-sorry.” They took a step back from the ring of trees positively laden with cherries, slipping their basket behind their back. Inwardly, they were cursing themselves. Stupid. Stupid. Of course the trees wouldn’t have that many cherries without a… a… “I, um… I didn’t know…”

The strange blonde woman smiled. “Are you sure you wouldn’t like some?” She plucked another cherry out of the full basket Marie had left there—she’d only been gone for a few minutes to get another basket—and slipped it between her lips with a positively orgasmic look in her eyes. “They’re so sweet.”

Marien bit their lip. “I couldn’t possibly. In fact, I have to go. Right now.” They took another step back.

The blonde woman smiled, reached back to touch one of the trees… and vanished.

Marie felt a hand on their ass, and jumped. The blonde’s sweet, clear voice rang in her ear. “You should really try at least one. They’re positively juicy. You picked a wonderful time of year to stop by.”

Marie’s whole face was heating up, and they were starting to panic. “I didn’t know this orchard had a dryad!” they squeaked, biting their lip as they hurried away from the cherry dryad—who had appeared from one of the smaller cherry trees sprouting outside the ring. “I just… I was just wandering through, and I thought…”

“Thought what?” The dryad beamed. “Thought you’d steal cherries from an orchard that clearly belonged to the villagers down the hill?” She waggled a finger. “What a naughty human! We need to sweeten you up!”

“I don’t wanna be mind controlled,” Marie whimpered, clenching their legs together. “I… I don’t wanna be kissed until my w-will dribbles out of m-my drooling mouth, or fed cherries until I’m… I’m drugged and stupid!”

The cherry dryad blinked.

She put a hand on her hip, looking almost indignant. “Well, I wasn’t even gonna do anything like that until you started mentioning it!”

Marie bit their lip, taking another step back—this time, they dimly realized, back towards the ring of old trees. “I mean it,” they squeaked. “Please, I just wanted to g-get some cherries for the road!”

The dryad giggled, bouncing closer on their tiptoes. “I don’t think you do mean it,” she cooed, plumping her lips and making a kissy sound. Marie’s breath caught in their throat. “You sound like you’ve had experience with cherry dryads!”

“Only stories,” Marie whispered. Their heart was pounding in their chest as the dryad came closer. “Please, don’t… don’t…”

“I wasn’t gonna do anything,” the dryad whispered, as she drew  near. Her scent was heady, making Marie positively swoon. “I’m a cherry dryad, not a nymph, sugarlips! I was just gonna try to get you to see that it’s wrong to rob a village this close to harvest time. Maybe sweeten you up by being nice to you, letting you keep some to yourself, since you do look hungry.”

Marie stared blankly. “W-What?”

The blonde winked. She had such pretty, pretty eyes… “But now it seems like you’re trying to tempt me or something. Is that what you’re doing?”

“Um. um. um.” Marie’s brain was short-circuiting as they stared into the cherry dryad’s eyes. They were hypnotic. Weren’t they? That had to be why… why Marie was breathing so heavily. Hypnotic eyes. Drugging pheromones. Marie was helpless to resist. And this dryad was gonna kiss them soon, kiss all their thoughts away, turn them into a… into a dumb, helpless, lovestruck little pet

“If you want to play, we can,” the dryad said sweetly, leaning closer. “It’s up to you. I can think of lots of ways you can make this up to me and the town. If… if you wanna be a good pet.”

Her words echoed for a moment in the little glade. Good pet. Good pet.

“I’m a good pet,” Marie heard themselves whispering. “I’m a… nnn… no, please…”

The dryad just smiled, cupping Marie’s chin and guiding her to stare into those pretty pink eyes. “It’s totally up to you, sweetie” she said again, her voice as sweet as cherry cordial. Then it went mischievous. “But first… tell me more about these stories you’ve read.”

Orchard dryads generally have an excellent reputation, frequently serving as the patron fey of towns, tribes and villages—especially those that often have food shortages, as a friendly dryad can be a great boon in boosting harvests. Most of them are naturally as sweet as can be (though some, like the lemon dryads of the Northern Isles, can be a little more tricky), eager to see their fruits enjoyed. They can consciously turn on and off the powers they have, such as the natural aphrodisiac they can release into a the fruits, and are careful—when aware, of course, of the potential consequences—not to give spelled fruits away to those who aren’t expecting to play a little.

In return, the orchard dryads generally expect only friendship and companionship. A lot of companionship. The villages they look after rarely want for volunteers, especially where peach, pear and cherry dryads are concerned.

Aside from providing the fruit, orchard dryads serve to protect their village from other fey, bandits and would-be conquerers, and even more exotic threats like mortal mindweavers and demons. They generally enjoy somewhat terse relations with the local Toxin Ranger lodge, of course—on principle, the Toxin Rangers discourage dealings with even friendly fey like cherry dryads.

Sadly, misconceptions abound, as erotica distributed throughout the Cloistered Lands often depicts certain dryads very differently—especially grape dryads and cherry dryads, due to the minor abundance of “wine dryads” among those two particular varieties.

It is understandable that people would be fixated, of course. Apparently, quite a large number of people have an extremely pronounced interest in being kissed into mindless, adoring submission by a giggling fey, or being guided to drink mulled wine until they can do little but whimper as the wine dryad strokes them and encourages them to surrender every little thought they have to his or her care.

Image Source: (their art is really lovely, both the erotic/suggestive stuff and the nonerotic stuff!)