Title: Summers in Slavery
Author: Lornadane ([email protected])
Summers in Slavery
One night Remy came home early. This was a rare occasion. Alex and I had usually gone to bed by the time he'd returned from whatever state business he'd been involved in that day. He fed us and took us to bed. Nothing unusual for the few times he had come home early. But he seemed distracted. Alex and I were pleasuring him when he suddenly stopped us and pushed us both away. I sat back startled, worried that I'd done something wrong. But then he told Alex and I to pleasure each other. I was a little disconcerted and concerned. Most of the time he demanded his own release before us. But Alex's mouth on my nipple soon drove away any thoughts. When we'd finished Remy was asleep. And there was no lovemaking later that night as was the precedent.
The next night, Remy never came home. Sad to say, I missed him when I woke up the next morning and didn't find him in bed. He returned the night after and informed us he'd be taking us to council in the morning. That night he stayed with us and I found the lovemaking poignant and sad for some odd reason I couldn't put my finger on.
As he promised, Alex and I were led with leather leashes to the council room. Remy sat on the throne at the end of the room. I knelt on his right, Alex on his left. Remy had instructed us to remain quiet during the meeting. It was a moot point. None of these councilors would want to hear from two slaves. But I listened. I kept my eyes lowered, yet watched the room all the same. I put names of councilors to faces. I concentrated on the state business that was discussed, but I was particularly interested in the economic concerns of this country. Genosha was facing a blockade from a neighboring country. There was talk of war.
And then there was talk of slaves. Nothing was said out loud in the general assembly. But there were grumblings. I could feel the sneers and scowls of some members of the council directed at us as they approached Remy. But thankfully none of the councilors laid a hand on us. I think it would have been frowned upon, not just by Remy but by the social standard. Favorite slaves were not touched unless permission was given, such as had been given at the party some months before. And Remy stayed close to us, rarely leaving his seat of power.
After that first day we began to go with him to council often. If I could place a time pattern to this activity I'd have said we went three times a week. But while we attended these meetings more frequently, Remy began to leave us alone more and more at night. This left me with a strange sense of loss. I missed his smile, his charm, his touch and smell. I think I was jealous. Jealous of whoever was taking him away from me. Was he going to the slave quarters? Was he visiting the women's quarters? Were we boring him? Was I boring him? I kept silent. And so did Alex. But I think an anxiety was growing in both of us, despite the fact that he was as loving as ever when he did come home to us.
After about the sixth week of going to council meetings according to my estimate, Remy stopped taking us to the assembly. But I understood why. He was being pressured to keep us out of sight. At the last meeting we attended, Councilor Constantine approached Remy as everyone was leaving. I'd seen him before and had learned his name when he spoke in council. He was probably in his late fifties, a handsome man, tall, graying at the temples with a dark thick mane. And he seemed practical, reasonable. My first impression was that he didn't approve of kidnapping mutants from Earth. He never said this in front of the members of the council. But I noticed he never came with a slave like most of his peers. And he wore an expression of disapproval every time slavery was mentioned.
As Constantine walked toward Remy this day I watched his eyes fall on Alex, and then he turned to look at me. He was frowning. But rather than disdain he had a look of disappointment.
"Milord." He bowed to Remy. "A word if you please?"
Remy nodded for him to continue. For a moment he seemed just a tiny bit uncertain, his glance moving to Alex again. Alex had his head down, but I could tell by the way he kept his arms dangled at his sides, purposely relaxed, that he was listening as intently as I. Constantine came to a decision then and began to speak in earnest.
"Milord, there's been rumors. I don't usually listen to the gossip among your courtiers, but this...I feel things are getting out of hand with..." he paused, searching for the right word or phrase, "our system of slavery."
I couldn't see Remy's face, but I imagined him tilting his head and cocking an eyebrow has he said, "Out of hand?"
"Yes." Constantine straightened visibly, more sure of himself now. "Many of the councilors and nobles have spoken harshly about your Alpha mutant slaves." He nodded to both of us in turn. "Some have voiced outrage. Others feel that if you have two in your stable, why must they settle for Beta class mutants. Monark, Bertucci, Escalada...they've always wanted an Alpha." His voice took on a sneering tone. "Escalada has made it perfectly clear he'd like to breed one."
"I'm aware." Remy spoke quietly. I could feel the anger radiating from him, but also the anxiety. This situation was getting out of hand and he was nervous.
"I don't agree with the kidnapping of mutants as you know." Constantine was saying and I turned my attention back to the conversation.
"Oui," Remy replied. "I know you only buy slaves born and bred here."
"Yes. But if others want 'earthers' and the law allows it -- within reason, of course -- then who am I to argue. Slavery hasn't necessarily been a bad thing for our country. Or this world."
I scowled with my head bowed. So much for looking toward Constantine as a possible ally.
"I'm worried though," he continued. "Alpha mutants are rare. And if too many are taken, it might be noticed."
"The count is low and all are registered," Remy replied evenly. "I don't think Earth will really care. Most of de human population don' like dem anyway. I would t'ink dey'd be happy for us to take dem off our hands."
I saw the councilor nod. "True. But most of the Alpha mutants have powerful non-mutant friends. Brilliantly minded friends who might discover the portals. And what really had me worried was hearing one councilor mention taking Johnny Storm for his stable."
My head came up at that before I could stop it. Remy glared down at me. And Councilor Constantine gave me a cautious look. I dropped my head immediately cursing my lack of restraint. Remy knew I was listening. He wasn't an idiot. But he didn't want to see it so obviously portrayed. He didn't want to be made aware of the fact that I was gathering information. I didn't want him to be aware of that fact either. It was a subtle dance between us. As long as I kept my head down, acted the perfect submissive, then he could continue to believe I wouldn't try to escape. And he wouldn't have to punish me for my overtness. Of course he had the advantage. But I needed to maintain the illusion. Cross that line and I'd be in trouble. And what galled me more was Alex's ability to remain calm. He hadn't looked up. He hadn't give one sign that he'd heard what Constantine had said. And he was supposed to be the temperamental brother. The one who reacted with more passion to a situation. I was supposed to be the cool-headed one.
I sighed inwardly and tried to get my mind back on what the two men were saying. Once the initial irritation and embarrassment of my reaction subsided, I found what Constantine had said very, very interesting. Johnny Storm wasn't a mutant. And the Fantastic Four were highly regarded on Earth. His disappearance would cause an uproar. And Reed Richards was one of the most intelligent men on my planet. If anyone could detect the portals and find a way over here, it'd be him. I gave a silent prayer that the councilor in question would try. It might just trigger a rescue.
Remy's absences at night had put thoughts of escape back in the forefront of my thoughts in the last few weeks. I'd even cautiously approached Alex about freedom. But he was still adamant that escape was impossible. And rescue highly unlikely. Besides, Remy could easily find us again and would just bring us back. I let the matter drop.
"I'll look into de matter." Remy told Constantine.
There was a short pregnant pause and then Constantine said, "Perhaps it would be wise to keep these two slaves out of sight for a time. Their presence in council is a goad to many of the council members."
"D'ccord," Remy snapped, dismissing the councilor with his tone. "T'ank you for your advice. I'll take it under consideration."
Constantine bowed and left quickly. Remy sat pensively for several moments. Then he gathered up our leashes and led us to the door of the council room. Two guards were stationed outside and he handed the leashes to one of them.
"Take dem back upstairs," he ordered, looking distracted, his eyes out of focus.
The guard tugged roughly on the leather leashes, pulling us away from our master. When I had a chance to look back, he was gone.
Alex and I didn't talk about what we'd overheard. Not at first. After all his vehement dismissals of ever escaping, I didn't think this latest bit of information would change his mind. But when night came and we lay in bed, waiting for Remy, Alex suddenly said, "Do you think it's possible? Do you think Richards could find Storm here?"
I looked at the outline of his face in the darkness. He was staring up at the ceiling, his head resting in his hands. "I don't know. Do you want to be rescued?" It was churlish of me, I know. But after all this time for him to finally give voice to the tiniest bit of hope, annoyed me.
"Of course!" He replied. But I could hear a faint note of hesitation and dread. It echoed my own. We'd been here so long. Perhaps only months, but so much had happened in that time. Alex and I both knew how much we'd been changed, conditioned. One question circled around and around in my head, wrapping up every question I had about escaping or being rescued into one neat angst-ridden package: could I really return to my old life?
Alex turned over and nestled his head on my shoulder. I could feel a faint trembling in his arm as he wrapped it around my chest. And I knew in that instant he wasn't seeking sexual intimacy. He was looking for comfort from his big brother. He was afraid. I pulled him closer and held him tight as we drifted off to sleep.
Remy stayed away for two days. Alex and I went on with our daily routine. I had my guitar and voice lessons. Then Alex and I would meet at the gym for our daily workout. It had grown too cold to go out into the garden, and it didn't look as though it was going to let up. So I practiced in the bedroom in the afternoon for a few hours. It wasn't nearly as pleasant as the secluded garden had been. But I'd have to make due. Remy wasn't going to let me put on clothes to go outside.
As night fell on the second day, Remy returned with two guards. This struck me as odd. He hadn't posted guards outside his bedroom in months. That was how sure he was that we wouldn't go where we weren't allowed. That we wouldn't go looking for the portal room. But I soon realized the guards weren't here to stand watch at the door when Remy asked me where my brother was.
"In the workshop," I answered cautiously.
Remy gave me a searching look and caressed my cheek. "Been practicing more, mon couer?"
"Bein." He smiled kindly. "You've been getting good. I won't need you tonight."
I was stunned by his words, not only by the rapid change in topic, but also by the content. He wouldn't need us? I couldn't quite understand what he meant. But all he said by way of explanation was that the two guards were here to escort my brother and I to the slave quarters. We were to remain there until he summoned us. I felt a pang of fear and a wash of jealousy. Was he breaking in a new slave? A new favorite? After all his professions of lust and need, were we no longer interesting enough to keep his attention? I dropped my head trying to hide my scowl, but there was no need has he had turned away to give instructions to the guards to stop by the workshop and pick up Alex. Then Remy began to undress and head for the bathroom. As he placed a hand on the doorknob, he paused and looked back at me.
"If you and your brot'er want to take pleasure in each ot'er, I give m'permission." I felt as if a door had been slammed in my face. Before I could reply, Remy had gone into the bathroom.
I followed the guards when they motioned for me to come along with them, carrying the guitar. I had no idea when Remy would call us back, so I decided I'd at least get some practice in. I wondered if the lessons would stop. I was due for one in the morning.
The arrival of myself and the guards surprised Alex as much as Remy coming to the room with them had surprised me. "We have orders to escort you to the slave quarters. You're to remain there until Lord Lebeau sends for you."
Alex scowled. "What about the gym? Or my workshop?"
The guard was brusque in his answer as if Alex wasn't worth the time for an explanation. "You are to remain in the slave quarters. Now come on."
Alex set down his tools with a sigh and removed his protective apron, hanging it on hook near the door as he fell into step behind the guards next to me. I looked at him with a sense of dread. "What do you think?"
"Quiet slaves!" One of the guards ordered.
Alex grit his teeth as I glared at our escorts. They didn't even bother to turn around. Arriving at the door to the slave quarters, we were ushered in roughly and the door slammed soundly at our backs. The hall before us was empty. No one was there to greet us and I wondered, *what now?*
I looked at my brother as he gazed down the corridor for a moment, his expression tense and withdrawn. Then he said, "Come on."
He led me to the second floor where his small Spartan room was. "What do you think?" I asked again as I walked along beside him.
Alex shook his head. "I don't know. He must be entertaining or..."
He paused in mid-sentence. But I knew his thoughts were echoing my own. "Or we're no longer his favorites," I finished for him.
My brother gave a curt nod. "Well, we've been up there a long time. Five months I think."
I drew in a breath. "Five months? How do you know?"
"I don't," Alex replied. "I'm approximating. The time difference could be significant. It feels like a 24 hour day. But without seeing a clock I can't be sure." I nodded. He continued, "Regardless, we've been up there a long time. Most of his favorites only last five weeks or so."
We said nothing more until we reached Alex's room. Then he told me he had something he needed to do. I could stay here or mingle with the other slaves in the common room. I opted to stay where I was.
"When will you be back?" I tried to sound casual. But Alex avoided my eyes, certainly hearing the accusation in my tone. He was leaving to go to his own favorite.
"Later," he said. But I knew I wouldn't see him again that night. I might not see him for the next few days. *Well, fuck him,* I thought viciously and let him go without another word, seething in my anger and sense of betrayal. I picked up the guitar after he'd slunk away, guilt in every movement. Strumming some chords absently I tried to rein in my bitterness. A minute later I set it down again, unable to concentrate. A little while later I picked it up again, thinking that some of the anger had abated. But then, in a fit of rage I flung the instrument across the room, satisfied to hear a loud crack of the wood as it struck the stone wall. The satisfaction was short-lived. I sunk down on the mattress, lying very still, curled up on my side. My thoughts were in a dangerous whirl. Escape was foremost in my mind. I had to escape now. Even if it meant leaving Alex behind. If he wanted to stay and protect some slave then fine, let him. I no longer felt obligated to protect him. I felt betrayed. Finally I fell into a fitful sleep. My dreams were tormenting, but when I woke I couldn't remember what they'd been about. My face was tear-streaked.
Alex returned shortly after I awoke. I couldn't say how long he'd been gone. And this irritated me more. I rolled away from him when I saw him look at the cracked guitar against the wall and then back at me. He looked tired, and sad. But I didn't care at the moment. I refused to speak to him, even when he sat down next to me and ran a hand over my hip. Not even bothering to tell him not to touch me.
"Scott..." He began after a few minutes. The plea in his voice was too much.
"Shut the fuck up, Alex!" I hissed.
"But..." He tried again.
"Tell it to your fucking favorite!" That shut him up. He let out a defeated breath and lay down with his back against mine. We lay like that for a long, long time saying nothing. I could tell he couldn't sleep either. Eventually the curiosity got the better of me.
"Who is it?" I whispered harshly. Alex was quiet for several minutes. Then he rolled over and wrapped an arm around my waist.
"No one special." He lied.
"Then why won't you tell me who it is?" I asked angrily.
"Because it doesn't matter. They're not important. I was just checking to see..." he paused momentarily, "that they were okay."
"They?" I asked, not missing the plural. "You've got a stable of your own down here?" I sneered.
Alex sighed, a little frustrated. Then he murmured in my ear, "Don't worry about it." His hand stroked my belly in circles, moving closer and closer to my traitorous cock. "I'm here now. I wasn't gone very long."
"Yeah right." I gave an audible sigh, certain he was lying. Something had happened. It was why he had seemed so sad. He must have fought with his favorite or favorites. Or maybe they'd denied him comfort because he'd been away for so long. But I was in a turmoil. I could call him on it. Press the issue. I had no real advantage though. Nothing with which to make him answer me, except perhaps guilt...and my body. I let the matter drop. But I kept facing the wall and kept up my stony silence.
"I'm here," he whispered again. "I'm not going to abandon you." Without warning his hand cupped my hardening length and I bucked slightly.
He began to stroke me slowly, pulling me onto my back and leaning over to kiss me. I jerked my head away. "Don't!"
Ignoring my plea, knowing I was weakening under his talented fingers, Alex began to bite and suck at my neck. I balled my hands into fists, refusing to touch him, trying to deny him. But his hand on my prick, softly pulling and stroking, a finger running the length of a large vein on the underside, his lips trailing down to capture a nipple was too good. He was good. So very, very talented.
Suddenly he shifted, straddling my hips. My eyes flashed open as his hand stopped fisting me. He was stretched over me and to the side reaching for something in the bedside drawer. I almost threw him off, but he was quickly back above me, dragging his groin across my skin. I dropped my head onto the pillow with a quiet groan. It was good thing he didn't chuckle at that moment or show some smug sign of victory, because I was on that edge between violence and lust. One word and I would have struck out at him.
I shuddered violently as his mouth came down on my cock, dropping over the edge into lust. He took his time, sucking the purpling head and then lowering down to take in all the flesh. Over and over until I was close to climaxing. Then he would back off. Again and again he drew me close to the brink of orgasm. And each time he stopped until he was certain I wouldn't cum. And just as I was about to shout at him in frustration, he kneeled up over me and lowered himself down onto my straining erection.
"Shit! Alex!" I rasped. This was the first time he'd ever let me penetrate him. He'd always topped me. Remy had always wanted it, saying how much he liked to watch my face the first few minutes when Alex pierced me. I suffered the pain so well, he said. And somehow I didn't think Alex would ever have offered up his own ass.
Yet here he was lowering himself on me, squeezing his muscles tightly, just below the head of my cock. And I gulped in needed air, curling my fists into the sheets of the bed, trying to thrust up. I only got a few inches off the bed before he slid all the way down, engulfing me.
"Hold still," he told me and raised back up off my cock. And then he began to ride me, slamming over and over, gripping me firmly, then relaxing.
"Alex!" I cried, opening my eyes to see him arching away and throwing back his head. I took his erect penis in my hand and began to stroke him in time to the punishing rhythm he set. One, two, three strokes and he was cumming hard over my hand yelling my name. As he climaxed, his ass clamped down around my entire cock and I bucked up a final time, drenching him, feeling as if I were being sucked into him, a part of me left inside of him and thrilled that I was there.
Alex collapsed on my chest with his nose pressed into my neck. "Scott, Scott, Scott..." He chanted softly over and over until he whispered, "I'm sorry."
I wrapped my arms around him and held him tight. All my anger and betrayal drifting away in the afterglow. "It's okay. It's okay." We fell asleep like that, Alex in my arms, knees bent up along my hips, hugging to me like a child, like my baby brother.
Hours later we were awoken rudely by a leering guard. "Time to go back." He said gruffly.
When we got back to the bedroom, Remy wasn't there. I'd been so excited that he'd called us back so soon that I'd expected him to be waiting for us. He wasn't and I was filled with bitterness and jealousy. We still did not seem to matter to him.
Two more days passed before we saw him again. Remy greeted us warmly, full of love and affection. Until he asked me to play my guitar. When he saw the state it was in he exploded. Could I not take care of the gifts I was given? Spoiled he called me and cursed me in French and Cajun. There was nothing I could say to appease him. And when Alex tried to step in, to say it was an accident, Remy cracked him hard across the cheek.
"You know de pressure I'm under, hein?! All I ask when I come home is to relax, to enjoy a quiet evening in pleasure. And what to I get?!" He turned on me, his face inches from mine. "Ungrateful cheins! Breaking dere toys cause dey t'ink dey're bein' passed over!" I flinched slightly under the truth of his words. Remy's red eyes began to glow. "You t'ink all dese nights I've been away, I've been 'aving a grand time?" He asked, grabbing my chin and digging his fingers into my skin. "I need a wife, homme! De pressure is building. Council members saying dat I must honor de old ways and marry. Produce an heir! And so I must be paraded in front of all de eligible daughters of my court like some fatted calf. And den to 'ave to come back here and deal wit' your tantrums?! Merde!" He thrust me away and hollered for the guards.
"Take him to de playroom," Remy ordered through clenched teeth. "Lock him in de stocks and put de cock device on him." I stepped back, eyes wide in shock and anger. I tried to push back the rising panic. Not that. Not again. I tried again to apologize. If he'd only listen. "I...I'm..." I swallowed in a too dry throat. "I'm sorry!" I choked out.
But Remy just waved a hand. "Too late! Maybe a night in de stocks will teach you treat de gifts I give you better, eh?"
I glanced over at Alex as one of the guards took my arm. He stood by looking helpless, his face red where Remy had struck him. And has I watched him stepped toward Remy, my fear evaporated, leaving only a quiet fury. "Master, please," he began in a beseeching voice.
"Non!" Remy whirled to look at him. "Don' say anot'er word unless you want to join him!"
Alex started to speak again, when I barked out, "No! Alex shut up!" There was no sense in both of us suffering. And I had to admit I blamed Alex for my own punishment then. He'd been the one to abandon me, causing my 'tantrum'. I didn't want him down there with me whining about how sorry he was. I didn't want to be near him right then. I'd take my punishment if it meant I could be away from the two people I hated most in world at that moment.
My brother opened his mouth, but seeing the stern look on my face, a look that told him how pissed I'd be if he came with me, a look of blame, he might have seen, and a look that promised rebellion, he closed his mouth again and dropped his head.
I let the guards lead me away, not even bothering to look at Remy, or my brother. I didn't fight. But after they'd locked me down and began to prepare me for the cock ring I cursed violently at them, calling them every foul name I could think of. They ignored me and finished snapping the device in place, leaving my cock throbbing with familiar pain. Then they left the room after turning off the lights. *Come full circle,* I thought bitterly and tried to sleep.
I wasn't sure what day it was when the guards returned with two slaves following behind. Time was again lost on me. I'd been barely able to doze and sleep deprivation had muddled my mind. Every muscle ached and my cock throbbed relentlessly. When the door opened and the lights came on, I could only groan in pain from the brightness and in relief that my punishment was at an end. But then I was informed that it wasn't quite over.
"Five lashes," one of the guards grunted.
My head shot up, knocking against the wood of the stocks. "No!" I shouted, finding my voice. "Remy never ordered that!"
The guard sneered. "He gave us the order when he told us to come get you." I suddenly saw the leather strap swinging menacingly from his hand.
"NO! God NO!" I screamed. It did no good. He took his place behind me and struck my back, putting all his weight into the blow. Being whipped that first time by Remy had been worse only because of the number of lashes he'd given me. All the breath went out of me. And I had no time to draw back before the second one landed just above my sacrum. By the fifth crack of the strap I was wheezing, tears pouring down my face, choking on the phlegm in my throat. I struggled for every breath of air. I was sure I was about to throw up. But then my torso and arms were released from the stocks and I fell heavily into the arms of guard who'd beat me. I swore at him through a thick phlegmatic voice, dredging up even more vile words than the last time. Then I did throw up. The guard turned my body on it's side to keep me from asphyxiating on the bile and snot, chuckling at my weakness.
"There, there now," he said to me sarcastically. "See what happens when you get mad at your betters, slave?" When I'd finished coughing and gagging, he motioned to one of the slaves standing nearby. "Clean him up." The slave looked puzzled for a moment. "Use your hand!" The guard barked.
The young slave bent down and wiped up the spittle from my lips, gesturing for me to open my mouth. Using his fingers he scooped out a few long strands of clear spit. I wanted to do it myself, embarrassed by this show of weakness, but my arms hung stiffly at my sides. I could barely twitch my fingers. Finally he stepped back and I spit out the last of the phlegm. Then my ankles were unlocked and I was dragged from the stocks and lifted up onto a masseuse table, just as I'd been the first time I was released from the stocks. And I realized that the two slaves were Bert and Ernie, the ones who had worked on my body that first time.
I quieted myself and let them work. But silent tears fell. I couldn't believe Remy had ordered this. I could feel myself sinking slowly into depression. And thinking, however irrationally, that I'd deserved it. I'd been ungrateful.
Finally the two slaves were finished. My circulation had returned and the sparks of pain trailing up my arms and legs had eased. My back ached, but I could feel it was only bruised. With a weak push, I swung my body sideways and placed my feet on the floor. I used the table to force myself up into an unsteady standing positions. The guards were at my side immediately. Each taking an arm, they half drug me from the room. One of them called to the slaves to clean up the mess I'd made. Just as we entered the hallway, the guards stopped and one of them produced a thick metal chain. Unlike the leashes Remy had used, this one locked in place. The lock was coded so that to remove it, one had to know the combination.
When it was secured to my collar, I was dragged back upstairs to Remy's bedroom. Still not quite over the stiffness and pain from the long night, I stumbled along after the guards, desperately trying to keep pace. They seemed to find amusement in my predicament, the one holding my leash yanking it often and quite roughly when I lagged behind. Several times I tripped, crashing to my knees on the hard marbled floors of the castle hallways. The guards never slowed down and I had to scurry to get to my feet or be dragged across the floor. By the time we reached the door to the suite, several bruises were beginning to form on my knees and elbows and the heels of my hands. I could feel my neck torn in several places and abrased in others where the collar had ground against the skin when I'd been to slow to get to my feet. My head was throbbing. And my cock was still secured in the ring. I prayed to God that Remy wouldn't be there to demand more of my attention. And I prayed that he would be there, so he could see how harshly I'd been treated by the guards and perhaps take pity on me.
He wasn't anywhere to be seen when I was shoved into the bedroom. Alex was lying at the end of the four poster bed, a chain leash similar to mine locked to his collar at one end and secured at the other end to a ring in the right post of the bed about two inches off the floor. When he looked up to see me stagger through the door, he got to his knees. The guard brutally shoved me toward the left post of the bed and I stumbled to my knees next to Alex. My brother caught me by my shoulders then and hugged me to him before I could warn him about the lash marks. As soon as I hissed in pain, he released me to look over my shoulder at the welts.
"Shit!" He cursed. Suddenly the guard who'd come in with me moved between us and drove Alex back with his spear.
"There is to be no talking between you two by order of Lord Remy. Or touching." He then ordered me to kneel close to the left post and locked the chain to the ring attached near the bottom. Then he stepped back and grinned at me cruelly. "You can take off that cock ring though." I looked at him warily as if it were some kind of trick to get me punished further. But then he added, "Any mess you make you better lick up. Lord Remy wouldn't like to see his carpet stained." I snarled. He knew I'd probably cum the moment I removed the penile device. And I doubt he would have given me anything to wipe up the sperm. I'd have to clean it up with my hands and mouth. After having thrown up once today, I knew my stomach wouldn't be able to cope with sucking down my own jism, so I left the device on for now. With a smirk, the guard stepped back and took up position at the wall across from us. Apparently he was to make certain we followed Remy's orders.
I knelt in place for a long moment, refusing to look at Alex. The helpless fury I'd felt during the entire ordeal was gaining momentum and I was afraid I wouldn't be able to stop myself from striking out at him. But I could feel his hopeless gaze on me. He knew I was blaming him, might have even understood the depth of my hatred, and he was looking for absolution. I couldn't give it to him. Not right then.
Finally, I stretched out on the soft carpet with my back to Alex and closed my eyes trying to sleep. But I couldn't find a comfortable position in which to rest. I couldn't lie on my back because of the sting of the lash marks. When I rolled onto my stomach, my bruised knees chafed against the carpet. And in any position, the collar around my neck dug into the cuts and abrasions. I tossed and turned restlessly until simple fatigue wore me down and I fell into an uneasy sleep. I knew Alex was watching me the entire time. I knew he tried at one point to convey some comfort. But as he reached his hand out to stroke my tormented body, the vigilant guard stepped forward and cracked Alex's forearm with the end of his spear.
"No touching!" He shouted. "I have orders to break your fingers if you do!" Alex was sensible enough not to challenge the order, but I could feel the heat of his rage flowing out from him, and my own anger abated.
When I woke from my fitful sleep, I rolled over to find Alex still staring at me. His eyes shone with anger and unshed tears. And beneath it I spotted pure desolation. I wanted to touch him then. My own anger toward him had been quelled by a heavy weight of depression that had come upon me while I slept. And all I wanted to do at that moment was to hug Alex. I only had enough energy for that. I rose to my hands and knees intent on crawling over to him, but he shook his head and looked over to where the guard was standing. He was straightening up with a warning scowl, so I sat back on my knees, closed my eyes and hung my head. This inability to touch or speak or comfort my brother was maddening. It was worse than being locked into the stocks. I dropped back down onto my side, letting the wave of depression take hold of me.
Night was falling when I looked over at Alex again. He was stretched out on his side watching me. His head rested on his left elbow and he was running a finger through the thick carpet. At first the motions of his hand appeared random and casual, as if he were simply bored. He'd swirl the finger in a circle, then slash down in a straight line. After a moment he'd run the palm of his hand across the rug, smoothing out the indentations he had made, never once taking his eyes off me. Circle, circle, line, circle, smooth. It took me several minutes of watching him before I realized he was writing words. A message. My eyes widened in excitement, but he frowned and gave a sharp jerk up with his head. 'Don't alert the guard,' he was saying. I closed my eyes and then opened them just a fraction to look at the guard through my lashes. He wasn't paying much attention to us, so I went back to watching my brother. For a long while I couldn't make out what he was writing and I was getting frustrated by the effort. The letters seemed familiar, but the words didn't seem to make sense. I thought it was a trick of the light, or Alex wasn't writing them clearly enough. But then one of the symbols became clear to me. It was Sh'iar for the letter X. Alex was writing in Sh'iar. I held back a bark of laughter, but one side of my mouth twitched up in a lopsided grin. My brother's face lit up and he let out a pent up sigh.
Smoothing out the carpet one more time, Alex wrote, "Sorry."
"Oh shut up." I answered. But Alex knew I wasn't angry anymore. At least not at him.
We used this form of communication until the sun began to set and the guard lowered the lights in the room. Then a servant brought us the evening meal consisting of a rice and broccoli casserole, bread and water. I sat up to eat and realized suddenly that the length of the chain wouldn't allow me to stand up. Why I hadn't noticed that before seem peculiar to me. I could only rise to my knees by moving closer to the post, or stretch out over the carpet. Fortunately the rug was soft and comfortable. But I felt like a dog chained to its dog house. It was humiliating and no doubt intentional. Alex and I were vulnerable in this position, with little leverage to strike out at any assailants. I don't think I'd ever felt more like a slave has I did being chained to that bedpost.
"Escape." I wrote over and over as we ate, watching the guard through lowered eyes, making sure he wasn't watching us too closely. I was getting very good at looking up through lowered lashes.
Alex just gave a slight shake of the head every so often and wrote, "this won't last." It wasn't much comfort.
After we'd finished eating, we were taken one at a time to the bathroom to relieve our bladders and get ready for sleep. I was stiff getting to my feet and stumbled several times to the door of the bathroom. But I couldn't think of anything more wonderful than those first few minutes positioned over the urinal as I removed the cock ring and ejaculated forcefully. It was a pain so exquisite it bordered on ecstasy. The pressure was gone, my bladder soon empty and I had to slump down on the toilet for a moment to regain my equilibrium. A moment more and I felt a wash of relief that I had waited to remove the hideous device. The guard made no mention of it as he stood by the door waiting for me to finish up. I ignored him as much as I could, out of anger and spite, taking my time as I filled the tub and began to soak my still sore limbs. But it wasn't long before he ordered me out of the bath, stating that my time was up. I got out with a sigh, although all-in-all feeling a good deal more human. I continued to ignore the guard for a few minutes more, taking the time to brush my teeth. I think I was goading him in a way, challenging him to assert whatever authority he had over me. But he simply left me alone to finish up, and soon I had no real excuse to stay in the bathroom. And of course, Alex was waiting for his turn.
The guard locked me back in place, and then escorted my brother into the bathroom. I lay there, listening to the faint sound of the shower running, feeling drowsy, but unable to sleep. My mind remained constantly alert to the sounds of the suite. Alex didn't take near as much time as I had, returning within minutes and settling down on his side facing me. He was almost asleep by the time he'd rested his head in the bend of his elbow. I watched him for a long time, listening to the sound of him sleeping peacefully. It was helping my mind wind down. But still I couldn't quite pass over into sleep. I was waiting for Remy. I thought if I could only speak to him, beg his forgiveness, he'd let us up. Eventually weariness in both my body and spirit wore me down and I dozed off.
When I was awaken by the stream of sunlight shining through the window, there was no evidence that Remy had ever returned. The bed had not been slept in and a new guard was maintaining the watch over us.
Alex and I were fed breakfast, then allowed to go to the bathroom to freshen up. We were locked back in place afterward and time drifted on. The sun rose higher in the sky and with so little to do, I slept for a bit. Around midday two guards came in and unlocked us from the bed. We were escorted to the gym and ordered to exercise. Then we were ordered to shower, all the while told to maintain the proper distance between each other. Even here we weren't allowed to speak. When we'd finished showering we were led back to our place at the end of Remy's bed and again chained to the posts. We were fed a light lunch. Then an afternoon of waiting followed while Alex and I perfected our communication technique. I didn't bother mentioning escape to Alex. It seemed so futile by then. Even chained like a dog to his post, my brother wouldn't contemplate breaking out of his captivity. The evening passed with little change from the previous night. A new guard stood watch. We ate and then were escorted to the bathroom. And then we settled in for the night. And still Remy stayed away.
Two more days went by without a change in the pattern, and if Alex and I hadn't been able to talk through the carpet writing I really believe I would have gone insane. The only voices we ever heard came from the guards. Just a few simple words to each other as they changed shift. Or an occasional bark at my brother and I when we got too close to each other. I hungered for the sound of Alex's voice. I craved his touch. Why was Remy punishing us in this way? Surely my small infraction didn't warrant this kind of treatment. The guitar was cracked, but not beyond repair. What was the underlying cause of Remy's wrath? Pressure from the council? Anger from having to entertain all those eligible daughters? And how could I get him to see how wrong this punishment was? It didn't fit the crime. At least to my way of thinking.
I had my chance on the fourth day when Remy finally returned. But he said absolutely nothing to us, only acknowledging the guard with a swift nod as he began to undress. I had risen to my knees has he strode through the door. Alex was slowly waking from a nap. When he wouldn't even look at us I had to speak. "Rem...Master."
"Quiet slave!" The guard growled. He took a menacing step toward me. I glared at him and then glanced quickly at Alex who was now kneeling beside me. Then I turned my attention back to Remy. He had his back to me and was donning his silk robe. "Please! You have to..."
"Quiet!" The guard roared. In two long strides he was before me. Using his considerable weight he slapped me palm open across the face, knocking me onto my rear. The force of the blow drove my head into the post I was chained to, momentarily stunning me. I heard my brother curse and move toward me, but the guard stepped between us, shoving him back.
"Filthy mongrels!" He snarled, his voice full of contempt. "Lay down like the ungrateful dogs that you are! Lord Remy never gave you permission to speak!"
When I turned to where Remy had been standing a minute before he was gone. My heart sank. Not even a disapproving look to acknowledge our disrespect.
Fuck. "Even a dog gets a pat on the head once in a while." I muttered.
Alex snorted. "Guess we're not the favorite dogs anymore."
The guard barked at us to shut up.
Remy emerged from the bath casually arrogant with a smirk and still ignoring us. I watched him intently, trying to puzzle out his mood. He seemed amused. And yet there was an underlying menace to his body language, a tension that could snap if Alex or I crossed a boundary we couldn't even see. I almost let out hysterical laughter when an image came to mind of me sitting back on my heels, hands bent at the wrists and elbows, whining like a puppy. Maybe Remy would at least treat us like dogs. Better than being ignored.
As he slipped into a maroon silk dressing gown servants entered with his evening meal, setting it before him as he settled in front of the coffee table. He ate quickly, appearing not to have even savored the meal, which for him was rather odd. Sex and food had always been two of his favorite pastimes, from my point of view. When he'd finished, he left the room. I continued to watch him the entire time. He never even glanced in our direction. It was as if Alex and I didn't even exist. Or worse, we were simply part of the furniture.
For a long time I sat back on my heels staring at the door. Realizing Remy wasn't coming back anytime soon, I stretched out on my side still facing the door. Occasionally I rubbed my face where the guard had slapped me, the sting still smarting on my cheek. And my head was throbbing where I'd knocked it against the post. I didn't have to touch the site to know a knot was developing.
So intent on trying to fathom out Remy's mood and motivations, I pretty much ignored Alex. I couldn't even say if he tried to communicate with me through the carpet writing. Perhaps he was just as focused on our master. Perhaps not. It hardly mattered to me. All I wanted at that point was some acknowledgment from Remy. Some sign of concern or anger. If he'd even just glance at us, at least I'd know he thought about us. This cold indifference was infuriating and heartbreaking. I wanted him to like...no, to love us again.
I was dozing lightly when the drone of voices alerted me that Remy had returned. He was speaking to the guard. After a moment the guard left and Remy moved to stand over us. I got to my knees stiffly and said, "Please."
Remy grasped a handful of my hair in his fist and pulled my head back painfully. "Have I given you permission to speak?" His tone was light, cheerful and amused, contradicting the harsh grip he had on my hair. But I could hear the threat buried in the inflection. I shook my head as far as I was able with my locks still wound around his fingers. He let go and began to stroke my head, once scratching behind my ear. "Good boy." He smiled cruelly and I was instantly, shamefully aroused. Without even looking down toward my need, he shifted to Alex and gave him the same treatment. Then he moved back and stepped out of the dressing gown, as if wanting to further entice us. I watched him with a grim anticipation, hoping he'd unchain us and take us back into his bed. But instead he picked up the dressing gown and walked around to the side of the bed, throwing the clothing over a chair and climbing into bed without another word. I felt broken, empty, and my erection wilted immediately. Very soon I could hear the soft whisper of his breath, even and slow, signifying he was asleep.
However, now Alex and I were alone with Remy. No guard was posted to keep us from speaking or touching. I had laid back down when I was sure Remy had fallen asleep. Now I was facing my brother. He was stretched out on his side also, looking at me with a sad smile on his face. Slowly, a bit fearful that the guard would suddenly appear or our master would wake, I inched my hand over to Alex until our fingers were entwined.
We stayed like that for an hour, maybe more, just holding hands, glorying in the connection, the first chance to touch and be touched. As with all things, you can't really appreciate them until they're taken away. Like freedom. I may have been hated and feared on Earth, but at least I could relatively come and go as I pleased. I could make my own decisions. And I had never been forced to endure this frightening loss of connection with other human beings. I was free to love who I wanted. Free to be who I wanted to be. Perhaps the ruby quartz glasses marked me as a mutant, shackling me to a monochrome world of red, but I was really beginning to see that it was a small price to pay for being my own person.
"I'm getting out of here," I whispered to Alex with a newfound vehemence. "First chance I get!"
Even in the dim light I could see my brother's eyes widen in shock and fear at the tone of my voice. I hadn't spoken of escape so fiercely in months.
"This won't last," Alex finally whispered back. "He won't keep us chained here forever. He won't stay mad at us."
"I don't care!" I snapped, still keeping my voice low so as not to wake Remy. "I'm sick of this. One mistake, one fit of anger and he treats us like dogs. It's a fucking nightmare. At least Magneto would have killed us by now. Gotten it over with already. But Remy..." I snarled with distaste, "he wants our love, our respect. He thinks he can make me...us...worship him. And I won't. Ever!"
My brother's eyes came alive with his own anger. "I'm telling you Scott, it won't work. You'll never get away."
"And I'm telling you I don't care!" I whispered furiously again. "First chance I get, with or without you, I'm going to find that portal. Even if it gets me killed, I'm going through. Remy has some hold over you. I can't help that. You're protecting your lover or lovers. Well, that's not my concern anymore. Hell! You won't even tell me their name!" I accused. Alex glared at me, but I hurried on, not letting him speak. "I want your help. I want to protect you. But you guard your secrets. How can I help you if you won't even try? If you won't even trust me?"
"Scott..." Alex began softly, trying to protest.
"No, Alex! I'm ending this nightmare one way or another. If you want to come with me, if you want to help me, let me know. If not, I'll keep my plans to myself and get out of here. That way Remy can't accuse you of being an accessory."
With that I let go his hand and rolled away from him, curling myself into a ball. I was afraid. Afraid of losing Alex. Irrationally afraid of leaving Remy. And terrified of going home. Of having to face Jean and the others. How would I ever be able to explain all this to them? But the fear only fueled my anger. I would get away from here. And when I was back at the mansion, I'd gather the X-men, contact Reed Richards and maybe even the Avengers and find a way back here to free the 'earthers'. And my brother. And whoever he was protecting. And Zaki. I would find him and bring him home.
I felt a tentative stroke across my back. One finger traced along a welt that had almost faded. "If you have to, Scott, I won't stop you. But I won't help you either." His voice caught on the words. I could hear a slight tremor as he spoke. "If you need to find out how futile it is, then try. But I'm telling you, however much I admire your intelligence, however much I respect your ability and love you, you won't get away. And when he recaptures you, you'll regret you ever tried." I shook my head ready to argue with him, but the tone of his whispered words stopped me. "No," he said, "you will regret it. He'll make you regret it. You think this is cruel of him. You haven't seen what he's capable of. And then he'll bind you to him like he's done to me."
Alex fell silent and pulled his hand away from my back. I was shivering now, but not from any coldness in the room. I wrapped my arms around my chest and began to rock nervously back and forth. It crossed my mind that I used to do this back in the early days of the orphanage, as a measure of comfort. But the thought was too fleeting to feel embarrassed or weak, so I kept rocking, swearing to myself that I'd make it out. I'd escape.
When I glanced back at Alex, he was turned on his side with his back to me. His shoulders seemed to twitch every few seconds and for a moment I thought he was crying. I wanted to pull him to me. I wanted to hold him and tell him that everything would be okay. But I'd be lying. Nothing would ever be okay again. Not if I couldn't escape and remained Remy's slave until I died. And not if I escaped and came back for him. Nothing would ever be the same. Nothing would ever be okay. And something, perhaps that fear or the sense of betrayal I'd had in the slave quarters, held me back. I left him to his misery. I had my own to contend with. Several hours seemed to pass before I fell asleep.
I was awoken by a guard digging his meaty hand into my shoulder, shaking me roughly. "On your knees slave!" He ordered.
I blinked and rose slowly to my knees, wiping a red burning pain out of my eyes. I'd been crying in my sleep again. No doubt from bad dreams, but still I couldn't remember what I'd been dreaming. When my eyes had adjusted to the harsh daylight streaming through the window, I saw Remy standing a few feet away, arms crossed, the expression on his face solemn and stony. He waited for the guard to wake my brother. As Alex climbed to his knees beside me, he said, "You've been ordered not to speak to each ot'er, or touch each ot'er."
I opened my mouth to argue, but the look Remy gave me froze the words on my lips. "You've disobeyed," he continued. But he offered no proof. Either he had been able to feel the truth of his words through his empathy, or he was bluffing. It really didn't matter, I realized. Even if we hadn't whispered or reached out to each other for a few hours of stolen comfort, I had the impression Remy would have said we had and punished us anyway.
"Turn and face de bed," he said, his tone quiet but deadly. "Put your hands behind your back." I hesitated for just a moment and the guard stepped forward, spun me around by my shoulders, grabbed my arms and yanked them back behind me, nearly dislocating my left shoulder. My wrists were quickly shackled tightly together.
Then Remy ordered us to open our mouths. I wanted to scream. I wanted to fight against the restraints, against the collar chained to the bed, and the guard. But most of all I wanted to fight Remy, to curse him for all he'd done to me, for all he was about to do. I wanted to tell him how much I hated him, how much he'd never have my love. I wanted to taunt him, to tell him how Alex still hated him too, how he loved his brother more than he loved his master. And I wanted to goad him, drive in the thorn of his own sorry life, laugh at how he'd been abandoned, used on the streets of New Orleans, hated by most of the thieves in the Guild and never respected by the X-men. Even when he'd led them. But I couldn't. There was no point. I'd seen him suddenly produce the control box to my collar in his hand. He'd activate the collar as he always did and I'd be more vulnerable than ever. Tied once more to the end of the bed and whipped for certain. I couldn't live with that again. Certainly not with Alex nearby, watching the whole grisly scene. And I still didn't want to die.
The guard came up behind me again and thrust a ball gag between my teeth, nearly choking me with my own tongue from the force he used. Before I could spit it out, the gag was snapped securely behind my head. My nostrils flared as I tried to relax my breathing and ease the panic building in my throat. Turning my head in desperation, I searched for Remy through a haze of fear and anger. He had moved to stand on my right watching me coolly, his expression unreadable. "Face de bed, Scott, or I'll cover your eyes."
I bit down hard on the gag and turned back to face the post I was chained to. I could see the guard take up position in front of Remy, just slightly to my right side and back. In his hand was a riding crop. Seeing it, I almost kicked out at him. I'd felt the lash five days earlier. I wasn't ready for it again. But I had to wonder how he would dole out the punishment with my arms pulled together behind my back. I suppose it didn't matter. He could just lay into my arms with the crop. But then Remy said, "Splay your hands up."
It took a moment for this to sink in. Then it hit me. Like naughty children, Remy was going to have the palms of our hands lashed. I could feel the flush of anger and humiliation rise on my face. But I did as he ordered. I glanced at Alex to see him doing the same.
"You've disobeyed," Remy began. "You've spoken to each ot'er. And you've both touched MY property wit'out consent." I flinched. "For dat your hands will be punished to remind you in de future to keep dem to yourself. I don' have time to spend correcting you. I considered sending you to a trainer for further conditioning, but right now it's an inconvenience. So, for now, I'll make it easier for you to obey."
I almost let out a laugh at that. 'Make it easier.' Lord, he was unbelievable. I wondered how far his depths of cruelty and selfishness went. "Until tomorrow morning, you'll stay as you are. No food. No water. You'll be allowed to use de bathroom tonight. But only to piss. I don' want my carpet ruined. Tomorrow, if I feel you've been sufficiently remorseful, I'll release you. But while I'm here, whenever de guards are away, you'll be bound like dis to prevent you from de temptation to speak or touch each ot'er. Do you understand?"
I wasn't sure what to do. I looked to Alex for a moment and saw him nodding in answer. I followed his lead and Remy said, "D'accord. Ten cracks across bot' hands. Move dem and I add anot'er for each time dey move. Begin."
The guard moved to my right and drove the riding crop down against my palms. It stung unmercifully and I almost drew away. But at the last moment I steeled myself, shutting my eyes tightly, and bit down hard into the rubber ball gag, hoping it'd help to endure the pain. I did unconsciously, however, ball my hands up into fists. And the guard tapped the knuckles, barking at me to open them up. *He could do worse,* I thought hysterically. I was vulnerable in this cuffed and chained position, afraid that if the guard got rough and cropped me across the back or shoved me to the floor, I'd break a bone or tear a tendon. So I opened my hands and tried to prepare for the next blow.
The second strike didn't seem as severe as the first. Don't get me wrong. It stung harshly and I knew that after ten my hands and fingers would be raw and red. There'd be a good deal of swelling too. But the physical pain could be dealt with. The emotional pain would be worse. I was furious without a doubt. Yet still there was this terrible lingering sense that I was getting exactly what I deserved.
Again and again the crop came down on both hands. At least I was able to keep the breath in my body. My lungs weren't grasping for air. But my hands were on fire. And at the count of ten, when I sighed in relief that it was finished, the guard cracked the crop down once again. At this I curled my hands into fists on purpose and shook my head.
"Anot'er den, added to de ot'ers dat are still left. Open your hands, Scott, or you'll receive an additional one." My mind whirled with pain and helpless rage. It was useless to fight. Ten lashes for each hand was really twenty across them both. Unfair. So brutally, viciously unfair. I opened my hands. And eleven more lashes fell. I felt a trickle of warmth at the end. The guard had broken skin, and the blood was oozing down between my fingers. As he moved away from me to start on Alex, I clenched my hands into fists, stopping the flow by pressure. It was agony. But I knew that if I didn't move my hands, the pain would be worse later on. Some contracting of the muscles would stiffen the skin and it'd be impossible to move them for the pain.
And I didn't believe Remy would allow our hands to be treated with the salve that had been used to ease our bruises and welts before. I slumped forward as the guard took position next to my brother, and rested my head against the post. Tears burned in my eyes, but I refused to let them flow freely. I refused to show Remy any contrition.
Out of the corner of my eye I could see Alex's face contorting with pain. He made no sound, at first. And he kept his face turned slightly away from me as if he didn't want to acknowledge my being there next to him. I'd never seen him punished before and it tore at my heart to hear the whistle of the crop and snap of leather against my brother's flesh. If I'd thought the blows to my own hands were bad, I soon discovered listening to the whip striking across my brother's hands was much worse. With each hiss, each moan let out despite his hard pressed lips trying to hold them back, I flinched.
By the fifth strike, I couldn't hold back the tears. How much more would we have to endure? Alex had said this wouldn't last. But I was doubting his words more with every crack of the lash. Remy was furious. He was cruel and hateful. I couldn't begin to see his motive for this ordeal. I couldn't fathom what was going on behind those scarlet eyes. And it hurt me more than I cared to admit. I swore to myself once again that I'd get out of here. Somehow, some way I'd escape.
Finally, Alex's punishment was over. I saw him drop his head in utter defeat and I choked back a sob. Remy stepped up between us and patted our heads. "Dere, dere. You'll learn, mon cheres. And den we can be a happy family again." One final pat and he was gone.
As promised, Alex and I remained cuffed and gagged the rest of the day and on into the night. It was torturous, but no worse than being locked into the stocks. The most agonizing part of the ordeal was not being able to really sleep much. I stayed on my knees for a long time after Remy had left, afraid to move, afraid the guard would misinterpret my actions, afraid Alex would look at me through tearstained eyes that mirrored my own misery. But eventually fatigue wore me down. It wasn't easy, being chained to the bedpost and unable to stand, but after a few false starts I pulled my stiff legs into a crouch and lowered myself to the carpet.
However, lying on either side proved extremely painful from the angle in which my shoulders were wrenched back with the restraints. I could feel my bones poking into the carpet and pressing back into nerve endings. This caused pins and needles to build up along my arms, and then a ticklish kind of painful numbness that radiated to my belly. The cuffs chaffed against my wrists. The collar dug into my neck almost every time I repositioned myself. I could feel the bruises forming underneath. Lying on my back was simply out of the question.
Somehow I managed to make it onto my stomach, but after a few minutes my arms began to burn from further strain they were put under. And I had to keep turning my face from side to side. Without my arm to pillow my head on there was no comfortable position to rest it. Exhausted and broken, with a gut wrenching groan, I raised back up into a sitting position. I scooted up close to the bedpost, crossed my legs and leaned forward to rest my brow against the wood.
My mouth was dry and a thick sludge had formed from the tears I'd shed and the subsequent phlegm that had drained from my sinuses. It was almost impossible to swallow with the gag in, and all through that endless day I had to focus on breathing so I wouldn't panic. I felt choked, stifled, terrified and humiliated.
And I couldn't look at Alex. Not directly. He was quiet at my side. The one time I surreptitiously glanced at him, he was seated as I was and I thought he was dozing. But then his shoulders hitched and a single tear fell from his closed eyes, and I had to look away. I couldn't bear his torment *and* mine. If I could, I would have crawled to Remy on hands and knees to beg his forgiveness. I think in that one moment, seeing Alex's misery, I would have done anything to put us back under Remy's good graces.
And I knew it was exactly what Remy wanted. He knew how hard it was for me to watch Alex suffer. He'd already threatened me with the act. Psychologically he was unmaking me further. Breaking me down into a true slave. I felt this as I sat there, balling my hands into fists, working out the tightness, my palms still burning from the sting of the crop. But why now? Alex and I had been so well-behaved except for my one moment of anger. We'd done all he'd asked. What more did he need?
And then I realized why with a clarity I'd not had in days. Remy needed a wife. He was away so much of the time now in that search. But when he did finally marry, we'd be left on our own. For how long, I couldn't be certain. There would be a honeymoon no doubt. Then a period of adjustment. Would his wife tolerate us in his bedroom, chained to his bed? Even having grown up in a society that allowed and encouraged pleasure slavery, would a wife want it so obviously thrust in her face that her husband sought sexual gratification in the arms of his male slaves? What would be our role then?
Remy wanted us dependent on his goodwill. "Do you see what your brot'er will suffer if you disobey me?" he seemed to be saying. He was giving us both proof of the punishment he could dole out. He could keep us so close, and yet not allow us to touch or speak to one another. We could watch each other's anguish and yet be unable to comfort. And what then? Were we supposed to see the futility in fighting, in disobeying? Would the days of silence and absence of touch, fused with the nearness, the awareness of something we wanted, needed, but couldn't have wear us down? When Remy finally, magnanimously allowed us our limited freedom, would we kiss his feet and call him savior? The longer I remained seated with my hands bound and my mouth gagged, the closer I came to wanting to do just that. I was dependent on him. He was the only one who could set me free.
I blinked back tears of shame at my weakness. My mind was clouding again without stimulation, with the pain and stiffness of restraint, with the fatigue that came from constant stress and perpetual fear. Because I was afraid. I was terrified.
Finally, *finally*, night fell. A slave came in just as the sun set below the city. I felt rather than saw the guard come near and unlock my leash from the bedpost. He ordered me up and when I was too slow, he grabbed me under one arm and yanked me to my feet. I thought he'd pull my arm out of its socket. But I made it too my feet virtually unscathed. Until I tried to walk. Fire and pricks of agonizing needles shot up through my calves. I stumbled forward, but the guard's meaty fist on my arm held me up. He barked at the slave to help and the young man came quickly around to hold my other arm.
Slowly, painfully we made our way to the bathroom. "You have ten minutes," the guard snapped. Not to me, but to the slave. Without further prompting he dragged me over to the toilet and stood me in front of it. Gripping my cock loosely in his hand, he aimed it at the bowl. Obviously my humiliation knew no end. I wasn't even allowed to hold my own cock while I pissed. With a heavy sigh I dropped my head and let loose a stream of thick pungent urine. I hadn't had anything to drink since last night, and the urine was dark, concentrated. But I also had not pissed in a day, so there was plenty. And it felt good. To my horror, as the flow came to an end, and the slave shook the last few drops away, I grew erect.
"No time," he muttered under his breath and drew me toward the shower stall. He glanced back at the guard wrinkling his nose. "He smells. Lord Remy may come back tonight. I don't think he'd like having to share the same room with a smelly slave, do you?"
The guard grunted and nodded. "Be quick about it."
The slave pulled me into the stall and pushed me under the shower head. Turning the knob on the wall, a burst of cold water hit me full force, abating any desire I'd had. I coughed and gagged under the spray, streams of snot running from my nose and mouth. In a panic, I bent over trying to dislodge the phlegm, and the young slave, alarmed, took hold of my arm tightly, saying, "I can undo the gag, but if you don't let me put it back in, I'll be beaten by the guard."
I nodded without hesitation and he unsnapped the offending device, pulling it from me. As I coughed and spit violently to clear my mouth and nose, a cloth was put to my face and the slave cleared away all the phlegm. I could breath easily now. I sighed in relief and thanked him. But he waved a hand in front of his mouth.
"Shhh," he whispered, "the guard might hear you." I thought he was being ridiculous. Surely the guard had heard all the coughing and spitting earlier. But then that might be overlooked. Talking couldn't be. So I grew silent and let the slave wash me. Mercifully, as if he knew the torture I was going through, he let the water stay cold and didn't put the gag back in right away. I kept my face turned up to the shower head and drank my fill. Five minutes later I let him put the rubber ball back in, dry me and lead me back to the bedpost.
I felt good, refreshed and looked at my brother as he was dragged to his feet. When he saw me looking at him, I gave him as much of a smile as I could and nodded. Alex nodded back and with the help of the guard and slave, stumbled to the bathroom.
When he was brought back he looked better too. And now I was able to meet his eyes without too much fear and anger and guilt. We gazed at each other for a long, long time. I could feel tears welling up in my eyes and could see Alex blinking back his own. Again, I was swamped by the overwhelming need to touch him, to give him comfort. I almost moved closer to him, thinking I could sit next to him, maybe nudge his shoulder just a bit without the guard being aware. But then the door opened, and Remy walked in escorting a beautiful young woman. He held her hand like nobility, gently, up above her waist line. I got to my knees but made no sound. There was no point. Remy had made his position clear. We were being punished and he'd not veer one inch from his orders. I'd only be punished further if I embarrassed him in front of his guest.
He whispered something to the young girl and she giggled demurely. A courtier's daughter, no doubt. Someone Remy was courting. She ignored us completely.
They drifted to the couches as servants entered with bottles of wine and platters of food. A table was set up, and I noticed with a twinge of envy there were two chairs placed on either side. A single red rose in a bud vase was placed in the center of the table between two red candles.
After the servants had completed setting the table, Remy rose gracefully from the couch and offered his hand to the young woman. Then he seated her at the table. A single servant in a red coat braided with gold and gold buttons, waited on the two. I was surprised it wasn't Henry, but then he was Remy's manservant, so perhaps he didn't serve as waiter when Remy was entertaining female company.
As the servant began opening silver dishes, my stomach rolled in protest and I bit back a groan. Alex and I hadn't eaten in a day, and Remy had said no food or water until the morning. But this was cruel. Deliberately so, and I slumped back on my heels, trying to ignore Remy and his guest.
It wasn't easy to ignore the smell of food, but eventually my stomach settled into a quiet revolt. Remy and the young lady were easier to ignore. From across the room I couldn't hear what they were saying and just watching them grew boring after a while. I tried with some success to push my jealousy deep down inside and ignore it too. Shifting to Indian style, I waited. The night dragged on as Remy and his lovely companion laughed and talked and flirted.
Finally there was a knock at the door and a polished young man entered the room. He and Remy shook hands, exchanging courtesies. Then Remy gave his young dinner date a chaste kiss and she left with the young man. I let out a long low welcoming sigh. Remy heard despite my trying to keep it quiet, because he turned sharply to narrow his eyes at me until I dropped my own. But when I looked up a minute later he was giving me that knowing half-smile, half-smirk. Then he turned and began stripping as he sauntered off to the bathroom.
I must have dozed off because the next thing I was aware of was Remy standing in front of my brother, naked and still wet from the bath, small droplets of water trickling down his skin. He'd placed a hand softly on my head, fingers twining through my locks. With his other hand he stroked my brother's cheek. The blood began to drain into my groin and I swallowed reflexively around the gag in my mouth.
Remy was holding Alex's gaze. "'Ave you been good, my pet?" My brother blinked in sleepy confusion and Remy smiled. "Of course, cher, how could you not, hein?"
His hand suddenly shifted to the back of Alex's head and he undid the gag, pulling it from his mouth and letting it drop to the floor. Alex coughed and swallowed, clearing his throat.
"Master..." he croaked.
"Shhh..." Remy placed a finger to my brother's lips. "Don' say anyt'ing I'd hate for you to regret."
I sneered at that, but Remy didn't notice. His eyes were glowing ruby slits solely focused on Alex's face, his voice low and husky, his cock fully erect, inches from Alex's lips.
"She was beautiful, non?" Alex knew better than to answer. "But stupid as a cow," Remy continued. "Too much inbreeding in de upper classes here. Dey want to keep de line pure. But look what dey breed. Idiots. N'cest pas?" His hand had slipped around to Alex's face and he ran a thumb along his bottom lip. I shuddered involuntarily and Remy looked over at me, giving me a lazy smile, stoking his fingers through my hair. "But not my boys, eh? Smart, smart my boys. And beautiful. Even bound and gagged. Si beau."
His words ran through me like sweet honeyed liqueur causing me to shiver again, causing me to feel hope. I closed my eyes and when he stroked my face, still purring compliments and soothing words, I turned into his touch. He used none of his charm power. I simply wanted him to touch me. And I nudged his hand a bit toward the back of my head, hoping he'd release my gag too. Instead he drew his hand away with another lazy smile.
Remy grasped his engorged penis, now oozing with pre-cum, by the root and ran it across Alex's lips. "Be a good boy. Be a smart boy. I'll release you in de morning. Not long now."
Without any hesitation Alex opened his lips and let the head of Remy's cock slip in between. Remy began to fuck his mouth and throat with easy gentle thrusts, holding Alex's face to control his rhythm. "Ah, ah, ah..." he rasped, "I miss dis mout'. So hot, so good. Dat's it! De tongue, cher, use de tongue. So smart, so talented." On and on he murmured. Soft words of encouragement. Words that aroused. I was hard and leaking, and couldn't look away. Alex's throat caught my eye as he gulped down Remy's prick, taking it to the hilt. I could swear I saw the minuscule tremors of the muscles spasming, and my own cock twitched with want.
"Sweet mouth. I taught you well, mon cher," Remy boast. And he had. Alex had a very talented mouth. But as I watched, almost drooling with longing, it wasn't Alex's mouth I wanted, but my Master's cock. Down my throat, up my ass. Just any connection. I wanted him to touch me again. I flushed furiously and turned away. But I couldn't tune out the sounds. Gentle slaps of flesh against flesh, moans and curses of Remy as he neared climax, and the soft clink of metal cuffs as Alex strained forward.
"Dieu!" Remy hissed only a few minutes later and I knew he was cumming. I almost came myself at the sound. And I couldn't help looking back. Remy's fingers were digging into Alex's scalp, his cock pushed into the hilt, his legs tensed together, buttocks straining from release, muscles twitching in pleasure, his back arched, his head thrown back in wild abandon, and his mouth opened in a silent "O".
Alex milked him for all he was worth. I watched in a hungry daze has he sucked and licked and swallowed until Remy almost had to push him away.
"Bein, bein," he said breathlessly. Bending to retrieve the gag, Remy kissed my brother passionately, clasping his neck tightly. Then he leaned back. "Such a good boy. Such a good slave. Open your mout', cher." Alex, eyes closed, seemed to droop, but he obeyed Remy's command and let the gag be slipped back in between his teeth. Remy snapped it securely around his head. He stood up and moved to stand in front of me. Stroking my head, he forced me to look up at him.
"Sorry, cher. Not'ing left for you at de moment. Perhaps tomorrow." He bent and kissed my forehead, then walked to the side of the bed and climbed in. He was asleep in no time. I slumped back and hung my head, all hope vanished. And this time it was my brother who wouldn't look at me.
I stayed awake the rest of the night, unable to wind down, or find any comfortable position to sleep in. Eventually, morning broke through the window. But Remy slept on into midmorning. Alex was awake soon after me. But he still kept his eyes averted, even though I looked at him several times trying to catch his gaze.
When Remy woke he immediately called for the guard. And without a word we were released. At first I could barely raise my arms. My hands were swollen and there was a single long laceration across the middle of my palm. It had broken again sometime in the night, and a thin layer of dried blood surrounded the wound. But I was able to move my fingers. And the swelling wasn't quite as bad as I'd anticipated.
"Get dem somet'ing to eat. Den call Samson and let him 'ave a look at dier palms," Remy told the guard once we were released. "If Samson t'inks dey're hands are not to badly injured, take dem to de gym. Dey are still not to talk to one anot'er or touch. D'ccord."
The guard acknowledged the orders with a respectful nod, and then went to the door to call a servant to bring us food. Remy gave us a final look and then went into the bathroom to get ready for his day. We were eating breakfast when he returned. He ignored us, dressing quickly, and left without another word. Obviously, he was back to being the hard master again. But at least we were free of our bonds.
Alex still wouldn't look at me while we ate. I think he feared I might be angry with him, jealous perhaps because Remy had paid him attention, had used his mouth. I wasn't angry. I was jealous, but I was controlling that emotion. I knew how irrational it was. And so I stared at him, trying to get him to look at me, but he wouldn't. And when he'd finished eating, he laid down with his back turned away from me. I felt a chill pass through me. This wasn't like him. He'd just as soon be angry with me, for not having drawn Remy's attention away.
I watched him until Dr. Samson came by. The doctor examined our hands, tut-tutting and muttering under his breath about Remy's cruelty. When I started to say something, he held up a hand. "Don't get yourself in further, my boy. Remy doesn't want you to speak to me either." Quickly and efficiently he applied a cooling salve to my hands and wrapped them in clean white gauze. Then he moved over to Alex, who still remained on his side.
Bending down, Dr. Samson murmured something to my brother. But Alex just shook his head and held his hands up for the doctor to examine. Samson looked over Alex at me with a questioning frown, but I just shrugged. He finished dressing my brother's hands and stood up. The guard stood to attention.
"Can they exercise?" He asked without much interest.
"They can jog. Or use the stairmaster. No weights for a week. Don't let them use their hands or arms. Keep the dressings dry. I'll be back in the morning to check on them and redress them if necessary."
The guard nodded and escorted the doctor to the door. Then he ordered Alex and me up. We both rose stiffly to our feet and followed him down to the gym. It was hard going, once we got there. The guard decided that jogging would be best, so he led us upstairs after allowing us to piss. I took my time stretching. My arms still felt like dead weight, and being able to now stand I was able to work some circulation back into the muscles. Very soon I felt almost human again.
After the guard decided we'd jogged enough, he took us back downstairs to the showers. One of the pleasure slaves I didn't recognize was there, rinsing himself off after a workout. The guard spoke to him gruffly, ordering him to wash us. That way we'd keep the bandages dry. Then we were led back up to the bedroom and locked down.
The rest of the day wore on. But at least we weren't bound and gagged. I slept most of the day. Alex did too, I was pretty certain, because once we got back up there he turned away from me and lay down on his side again. I watched him for a while, and his breathing was slow and even, so I took it that he'd fallen asleep. And he wasn't going to communicate in our carpet language. I felt a little bereft of that. It was something I'd really missed while being cuffed. But while Alex had seemed fairly energetic while we jogged, in this room he seemed listless, not really interested in anything, including me.
When night fell, the guard came back over to us. "Turn around and put your arms together." He said. I did what he ordered immediately, but Alex seemed to hesitate. Then he shrugged and turned around. Our arms were secured once again. But when the guard ordered us to open our mouths, Alex tensed and said, "No."
His voice was very calm, very quiet and assured. As the guard stepped forward to force him into obedience, Alex exploded. He kicked out, catching the guard square in the abdomen. The guard yelped and fell back clutching his stomach and I fell back out of Alex's way. My brother began to pull earnestly at the chain connecting his collar to the bedpost. I watched in shock and amazement, certain that his neck would snap from the strain he was using, trying to break the post. "Alex, stop it!" I hollered at him. But he continued to pull against the chain, letting it slacken, then snapping it taut with incredible force. I tried to lunge toward him to stop him physically, but he moved away from me until I reached the end of my chain. I yelled at him over and over to stop, but he simply ignored me and continued to yank at the chain.
By that time the guard had recovered and was calling for backup. Four guards were there in moments, stalking over to Alex has he continued to methodically pull at the chain.
"Don't injure him if you can help it. Just get the gag in. He can't break the post or the chain, no matter how hard he tries." One of the guards said. Why they didn't have the control box for Alex's collar was a mystery to me.
They moved forward cautiously. Alex saw them approach. "You're not putting that fucking thing back into my mouth," he said, calm but deadly.
"Take it easy." One of the men said, soothingly. And I though *they've been trained how to treat a cornered slave*. But then they pounced. Alex snarled and kicked out. At this point I began to help him. I sent one of the guards plummeting toward the footboard of the bed by sticking a leg out as he ran forward. His head met wood and he dropped like a stone.
One of the attackers yelped at that instant. "He bit me! The fucker bit me!" Inwardly I smiled. Alex wasn't playing fair. And I admired him for it. But I was curious as to why he was fighting the gag. He'd been pretty obedient up until then. I thought I was the one who'd fight the restraints.
Arms and legs flailed near me. I got in a few solid kicks to a torso or two that crossed my path. But without any real leverage, the battle was over before it had really begun. Alex was pinned to the ground and the gag was shoved roughly between his lips. When I saw the blood around his lips, I was afraid the guards had knocked some teeth out.
After the gag had been put back in, four of the men stood up and backed away. One of them bent and grabbed the legs of the man who'd been knocked out and drug him back away from Alex. Alex glared at all of them, his eyes a little too wide and his expression wild.
"You're going to be punished for that when Lord Remy hears about this." Alex snorted through the gag. As if Remy could do anything more to my brother, I thought. But he could, I knew.
"Calm down, Alex," I said, suddenly aware that my own gag hadn't been replaced in the confusion. "This isn't going to help." He turned his fierce glare on me and I winced. But I kept on. Alex was furious and needed to get back his center before Remy returned. "It won't last," I echoed his own words. "And you can't win. Not now. Calm down." I kept up this chant, more for myself in a way. But eventually Alex relaxed and slumped back onto his heels, head bowed.
Once they realized Alex wasn't going to lash out at them anymore, the guard who'd restrained us in the beginning moved toward me. "Don't think we didn't notice you either, slave," he scowled. "Now open your mouth and take this gag, or so help me, I'll kick the shit out of you, Lord Remy's favorite or not!"
I almost laughed at that. *We're no favorites anymore* I wanted to say. Instead I opened my mouth and let him snap the ball gag in place. Now that we were subdued, the other guards left. I was inwardly satisfied watching them carry their unconscious comrade with them. Even hoped I caused a good deal of damage when I tripped him. Then I winced inwardly, not too happy with my gloating. The guard was just doing his job. There was a good deal of animosity between Alex, myself and the hired watchers. But there was no reason to wish them ill. It was Remy who needed to pay for all these indignities. Him and the lawmakers of this country, this world, who allowed slavery to continue in any form. Although I'm sure, given the chance, many of these guards wouldn't mind owning a slave of their own. We were just privileged to bear the brunt of their envy of the upper classes.
I looked at Alex while our guard was preoccupied in getting himself back in order. My brother wouldn't look at me, although I tried hard to distract him from his obviously pessimistic thoughts. He looked defeated, worn down. And it had me worried. I would have given anything for Xavier's telepathy at that moment. What was going through my brother's head? I'd never seen him fight anything that was required before. Why now? Why tonight? Perhaps the isolation and punishment were getting to him? Perhaps he was near that edge into madness? Remy might have pushed him too far this time. I just couldn't tell. All I knew was how wild his look had been. How defiantly he'd told the guard "no". I prayed he hadn't succumb now to a madness I was sure would take us, if we were kept much longer in this confinement.
The door opened a minute later and Remy strode in. A girl -- she couldn't have been more than 12 years old -- followed meekly behind. And servants followed after with a table and chairs for dining and platters of food. Remy seemed irritated. I'm certain the guards had informed him of our behavior, but he didn't spare us a glance. I think he was more irritated by his dinner companion. She was a mere child.
However, I watched him as the young girl stood by, obviously terrified, waiting for the servants to set up the table and leave. Remy seemed to physically steel himself against something, perhaps his coming dinner. Then, after all the servants had gone except the one who was to wait on them, he turned to the girl and offered his hand. "Chere," he said, "shall we eat, eh?"
The girl gave a nervous nod and took Remy's hand. He sat her down at the table and a change came over the two. Remy began to flirt with the girl outrageously, but in such an exaggerated way that no one could mistake it for serious seduction. He told her jokes and amusing anecdotes, all to ease her fear. And she began to relax in his company. She laughed at him, and he got her to talk about her day, what she had studied, where she had gone, what shops her 'nanny' had taken her to. His manner was very similar to one he'd used with Henry. He knew the girl was too young to be paraded in front of him as a wife. But women weren't treated much better here than slaves, and she might have borne the ire of her parents had Remy refused to spend some time with her, courting her.
I couldn't help but admire that he would endure this ritual, just to save the girl from being punished. But then he had shown some sense of decency at times. And I couldn't really say that what was happening between the two was truly honorable on Remy's part.
After they'd dined, Remy led the girl to a couch. A pitcher of juice was provided. Remy wouldn't allow the girl to drink wine, though I got the impression it was allowed in this country. The young girl, more relaxed by that point began her own innocent form of seduction. It was awkward to watch. A clumsy hand put on Remy's thigh, a soft giggle, an indecent caress. Remy more often than not gently removed her hands with a chaste kiss to her knuckles. And it wasn't long before he kissed her softly on the forehead and sent her away.
Once she was gone, Remy strode over to us and stood in front of my brother. *Here it comes,* I thought. We'd be punished further.
With a sense of surprise, I watched him bend down in front of Alex and remove the gag. "I understand you weren't very obedient to your guard today. Why would let him cuff you, but not put in de gag?" Again Remy surprised me. His look was of sincere concern. Not anger.
Alex looked up at him warily. I think he wasn't sure if he could speak.
But Remy prompted him, "You can tell me, mon cher. Why did you fight de guard?"
Alex said nothing for a long moment. He simply gazed into Remy's eyes as if searching for something. "I..." he finally began. Then stopped to clear his throat. "I wanted you to do it. Only you." I felt my heart lurch from the defeat, the sadness, the utter desolation in his tone.
"Me?" Remy asked quietly, contemplatively. "You fought de guards because you wanted me to put de gag back in your mouth?"
Alex hung his head. "Yes," he whispered. "Not those animals. Not the hired help. I just...I just want you."
I was shocked. He was bending to Remy completely. He wanted his slavery. And I was furious. And terrified. Is that what I would become? Alex was becoming lost to me. Something had happened between last night and this evening. Something I couldn't understand. I had to get out. I had to get Alex out. He was losing his soul to Remy Lebeau.
And Remy was radiant. He pulled Alex to him. "Mon couer, why didn't you say? Oh, mon cher, de guard is just obeying my orders. He is my emissary when I'm not here. You *must* obey him as if he were me. Understand?" I saw Alex nod on Remy's shoulder. Remy stroked his back and whispered to him. I don't think it was anything I couldn't hear, just soothing words, words of some false love. Eventually though, Remy's voice grew stern, and loud enough that I could hear what he was saying.
"You know, t'ough I love you, you must be punished for your disobedience." Alex nodded again. "But because your disobedience came from wanting my attention, I will deliver de punishment m'self." He pulled back from my brother. "Okay?" Alex looked at him for a moment and then gave a curt nod.
Then Remy looked at me for the first time. "And I will punish you in de playroom. I won't let your brot'er watch. I won't add insult to injury. D'ccord?"
Alex gave him a slight, yet soulful smile as Remy stood up. Not bothering to call for a guard, Remy unhooked the chain attached to my brother's collar and helped him to his feet. They left without a glance in my direction, and I felt this terrible need to cry. But I shoved the feeling down deep. Alex was lost to me.
The rest of the night I was left alone, cuffed and gagged, to wait for Alex's return. But by morning when he still hadn't come back I began to worry. Had Remy seriously injured him, after his loyalty, his complete undoing? Was he being further punished? Left for the night in the stocks as I had been? Or maybe -- and I tried hard to dismiss this jealous thought -- Remy had given him a reprieve for what he'd said, for how he'd acted. Maybe even now, he was tucked away in the slave quarters, being nursed back to health by his favorite slave. I didn't want to believe this, but the longer he was kept away, the more uncharitable I became. Another twist to the thorn in my side.
By midmorning I was released by one of the many guards who'd stood watch over us. When I asked where Alex was, as expected, I was told to shut up. Then I was fed, taken to the bathroom, then to the gym where I was ordered to work out, and then led back to the bedroom and chained to the bedpost once more. My usual day, but without the presence of Alex to alleviate some of the loneliness. Standing outside myself I was amazed at the depth of my heartache, how much I missed Alex although I'd witnessed him truly break for the first time. Yet a small portion of me wished him dead rather than having some twisted love toward Remy. But there was little I could do. Still, I didn't allow myself to cry. Tears would come later, when I was free. I'd shed no more tears until I'd brought Alex safely back to the mansion.
That night the guards were taking no chances. As if in retaliation for my brother's actions, my collar was activated, and the gag and cuffs were secured once I'd hit the floor paralyzed. I tried to curse them before the rubber ball was shoved between my teeth, but only a pitiful mewling sound came out. The two men laughed at the sound and left me on my side, the pain in my arms increasing with every minute I was unable to move.
Remy returned a short while later as I was attempting to get to my knees. He had another young woman with him. Another courtier's daughter to audition for the role of wife. At least this one looked older than eighteen. They ignored me as usual. But this didn't bother me because now I was ignoring them. By the time the woman left, I was leaning back gently against the bed frame asleep.
I'm not certain if Remy said something to wake me, but when I opened my eyes, he was down on one knee in front of me. I scowled at him for a moment and then closed my eyes and bowed my head.
"Look at me, Scott," Remy ordered.
Funny how I'd come to react to his voice without thinking. My head shot up and I looked at him cautiously. But when he raised a hand to caress my cheek, I flinched away from his touch. He frowned, but not in anger. He seemed concerned.
"Your brot'er is safe, mon ami," he said. I glanced at him, more surprised that he called me 'friend', than at Alex's safety. I'd had no real reason to believe my brother had been in any serious danger, although the thought had been a burden most of the day. "I sent him to de infirmary to heal," Remy continued. "He'll be back tomorrow."
Oddly enough I found myself not caring. It seemed so anticlimactic. I shifted to drop my head again, but Remy reached a hand out to take hold of my chin.
"You don' care." It wasn't a question. I just stared at him, keeping my face neutral. But then he was moving forward, gripping my jaw line tightly to prevent me from turning away. His lips brushed lightly over my eyelids and strayed across one cheek to my ear. I shivered, trying to pull back.
"Why do you fight what you can' hope to win?" Remy whispered. "You do care, but you're pushing it away, trying to ignore de feelings and trying to ignore me. You don' want to believe what your baby brot'er now understands completely: you're mine. You may be angry by dis punishment and t'ink it's unfair. But dat means not'ing. Down deep below de anger, and perhaps de hate, you know you belong to me." He nipped an earlobe, running his tongue along the rim. I shut my eyes tightly trying to shut him out. Instead, the tears I had determined never to shed sprang up behind my eyelids.
Remy pulled me into his arms, his lips barely brushed the skin just behind my ear and I let out a muffled sob.
"Soon," he murmured, and let me go, wiping away a stray tear with his fingertips. "Soon," he said again. Then he stood up and climbed into bed. I couldn't fathom what he'd meant by 'soon' and so I let the tears flow until I dropped off into a restless sleep.
Alex returned the next day after I'd eaten and been taken to the gym. His eyes were hollow and haunted. But he didn't look at me for long. And when he rolled onto his side away from me, I could see the faint traces of the whip marks across his back and buttocks. They crisscrossed each other, so there was no telling how many he had received. They were ugly all the same, and I longed to reach out and run a finger across all of them, hoping to heal the emotional scars they had left. My brother was lost to me. Damn Remy.
The days passed into weeks without any let up in our punishment. During the day we were left unrestrained, but watched closely by a guard. At night we were cuffed and gagged. And the guards always kept the controls to our collars within easy reach. One hint of rebellion and it would be activated.
Remy came home almost every night. And almost every night he was escorting a noble woman. Most of the time they dined, enjoyed an after dinner drink, and then the woman of the evening left with a family member or servant who had come to escort her home. Remy would shower afterward, and then come to stand in front of my brother seeking release. Alex gave it willingly every time, so often with a sad smile at the end. He'd never look at me after he'd finished, just turn toward the bed, drop his forehead against the post and try to sleep. Sometimes, I saw a few tears drop down his cheek, but most of the time, he showed little emotion. And so often, I'd feel my own tears fall for what was lost to me.
Occasionally the woman of the evening was brazen enough to attempt to seduce Remy. And more often than not Remy would take her to bed. Alex and I would be forced to listen as he was pleasured by the woman, and has he pleasured the woman. It was grating more than anything. And for some reason actually being witness to the act didn't spur my jealousy as much as when he'd left us alone, and my imagination roamed, thinking of him with someone else. It could have been the gender. As long as it wasn't a man, I didn't feel quite as threatened. Or perhaps because I knew it was just sex for him. The women never returned for a second night. Remy knew well enough that those women were using sex to get what they wanted, namely to become his consort, to gain power of some fashion. It had nothing to do with love or even attraction.
And I think he liked the idea of having sex with a woman in front of Alex and me. There was an allure to it, another way of punishing us with what we couldn't have or couldn't do. Namely touching him, or holding each other. And that made those nights exquisitely painful for me. It forced me to realize what Remy had meant. Soon I would succumb. If the punishment didn't relent soon I'd be begging Remy, telling him I'd do anything if he'd just let me back into his bed.
All during that time, no woman came to dine twice. Not even the ones who had been demure and genteel, the ones who had left seduction behind and sought to appeal to Remy's intelligence. Noblewoman after noblewoman came and went trying to win the heart of the sitting Patriarch. But they all seemed to fail once their night was over. One audition per woman.
Until Vanessa de Troia, the dark-haired ice queen I recognized from Alex and my 'coming out' party. Four consecutive days she came to dine, and stayed with Remy the rest of the night. I despised her on sight. Not because she goaded Remy into ordering Alex and I to perform. That would have been a waste of good hatred. Especially when that night had ended so well in reconciliation with my brother. But because she didn't ignore us like the rest of the women who'd come to win Remy's heart. She made every effort to slight us, to demean us in Remy's eyes. And we were helpless to fight back against her nasty words, bound and gagged in front of her. I felt like less of a man in her presence.
"Remy," Vanessa said, the first night she came to his room, "what lovely decor. I believe I'll have to look into having a few handsome slaves chained to the foot of *my* bed."
Remy laughed. "De trick, ma chere," he joked, "is getting de right slaves. Deir coloring should accentuate de fabric of your bed."
She tittered at his wit, then proceeded to ignore us for the time being. But her attention always seemed to come back to us, her jealousy so obvious. Her words cutting and deep. And while I might have pitied her for being so petty and insecure, I just couldn't bring myself to do anything but despise her.
However, I did have to wonder what she really had to be jealous of. There was little we could do to her as slaves. But perhaps our very presence frightened her? Perhaps it symbolized what we meant to Remy? Was it possible she was still angry because Remy had left her at the party to be with us? She seemed the type to hold a grudge and to exact revenge whenever and wherever she could.
This all became too evident on the forth day. It was early morning and Remy had been called away for some minor crisis in the palace. He'd told Vanessa to stay. He wouldn't be long. She lay in Remy's bed for a while, but eventually, when it seemed Remy would be away for longer, boredom must have caused her to rise. She floated around the room, picking up the various statuettes and knick knacks, turning them over and over as if assessing their value. But even this began to lose interest and she turned her attention on us, two more objects to be appraised.
Vanessa glided over to stand in front of me. I eyed her warily, knowing she'd try to provoke me, although there was little I could do, but wondering how. She used a fairly direct approach. Animosity radiated off her like a victim of a nuclear war.
"Lovely creatures," she purred. "You do make handsome decor. But then Remy always had good taste." She paused in thought. "If not always good sense. When we are married, however, I'm sure I'll be able to guide him in the right direction."
So she expected to marry him? I had thought as much. But had he asked her yet? Was it official, or was she presuming? I think I hated her more at that moment than I'd ever hated anyone, including Apocalypse. So when she ran one perfectly manicured finger down my cheek, I snapped my head away, one lip curled up in distaste around the ball gag. She scowled viciously and slapped me hard across the face.
"Remy's too lenient with you. When we are married," she hissed, "I'll have you sold. He may be enamored of you now, but I'm certain I can convince him what a liability you both are. I'm sure Councilor Escalada would pay a handsome price for you. He's mentioned several times to me how he'd love to have you both in his stable. Perhaps I'll arrange it. Remy's sure to see my reasoning."
She stood back crossing her arms. Her lips rose in a half sneer, half smile. "Or perhaps," she mused, "I *will* keep you. Yes. I'll have Remy give you both to me as a wedding gift. Then I'll keep you in *my* stable." Her eyes lit up with malicious amusement. "I'll harness you both to my gurney and gentle you to my riding whip. Would you like that? You'll live in the stables like the rest of the stallions." Now her lips curled into an unmistakably cruel smile. "Perhaps I'll have you gelded. It will help in the long run to tame you."
I narrowed my eyes in fury. I wouldn't put it passed the bitch to try. And after these last few weeks, I wouldn't put it passed Remy to agree.
"Yes." Vanessa drew the S out with a perverse satisfaction. "I'll drive you around the city. I'll be the talk of Genosha. The woman who tamed Remy's favorite pets." Her smiled broadened and a faraway look appeared in her eyes. "The woman who tamed Remy Lebeau."
Suddenly Vanessa shifted in front of me and I saw Remy standing in the doorway. She hadn't heard him come in. Neither had I for that matter, so caught up in her cruel words.
"So," he said, his voice low, but the dangerous tone couldn't be mistaken, "you'll tame me like a slave, eh?" Vanessa had crossed the line and I would have laughed with glee if not for the gag in my mouth. "Like a stallion slave, no less."
Vanessa whirled around, completely off her guard, and her perfect icy demeanor faltered. But with grudging admiration I watched her recover quickly.
"Remy," she began placatingly.
"Get out," Remy calmly interrupted, refusing to listen.
"But, Remy, darling..."
"Get out, or I'll have de guard escort you out."
Sensing she was loosing ground fast, Vanessa switched tactics, pulling herself up and exuding an air of indignant anger. "You wouldn't dare. My father would..."
"Your father, chere, wouldn't do a thing. Not once he was made aware of your excursion to Earth with Escalada last summer."
Vanessa's eyes widened in shock. "How could you possibly..."
Remy chuckled, but with little mirth in his tone. "You're not de only one wit' spies, petite."
Vanessa dropped her hands to her sides, but I could see the minute tremors in her fingers. She shrugged slowly, casually and slithered over to Remy. Another tactic in mind. Seduction.
"Remy," she began in a low husky voice, "it was nothing. Just a little scouting trip." Remy's lips twitched in dark amusement, but he said nothing as she draped herself around him, pressing her cold lips against his cheek. "He's a brute. Cold and callous."
"Den you two should be perfect toget'er," he said maliciously.
I had to give Vanessa credit. The comment didn't raise her ire. She continued speaking as if she hadn't heard him, running her hand up one arm and shoulder and down again. "You're so much more of a man, Remy. Warm, friendly, handsome, but so powerful. We'd be so good together." She gestured back toward us. "I was only joking. I would never do anything to harm your favorites." Her hand came back to run seductively down his chest. "And I'd never believe that I could influence you. Don't send me away."
Remy looked at her for a long moment as if assessing the truth of her words. "So you wish to marry me, chere?"
My eyes widened at this. Was he really going to ask her to marry him? Vanessa's face lit up. "With all my heart," she whispered, breathless with anticipation.
Remy smiled at her, the first sign of warmth I'd seen in him since he'd returned. He ran a finger gently down her cheek. "You should know, petite," he said, "I don' marry whores."
It took a moment for his words to sink in. Then Vanessa stepped back away from him, her face twisted in fury. I saw her hand twitch slightly before she brought it up, intending to slap him. But he caught her wrist and forced it back painfully.
"You bastard!" She screamed. "After all I've done for you! All I've given you!"
Remy chuckled. "Oui. But as my Tante Mattie use to say 'why buy de cow, when you can get de milk for free.' And incidentally," he added, "I was never going to marry you." He winked at her and in a rage she wrenched her arm free.
"You'll pay for this," she hissed. "Somehow, someway, I'll make you pay."
Remy looked over her shoulder then, catching my eye. "Better men den you 'ave tried, chere. Do your worst." He looked back at her. "But never underestimate me. I have ears all over dis kingdom. I know your secrets. Do you really t'ink you know any of mine?"
Vanessa glared at him and said, "I know your weaknesses."
I thought Remy was going to strike her then. His face mirrored the fury in her own expression. But she suddenly gathered herself together and swept passed him out of the room.
Remy waited for the door to slam. He closed his eyes for a moment and a transformation took place on his face. Then he burst into heartfelt laughter. "Oh," he said to himself, "Remy Lebeau, you've made a very lethal enemy today. But dis was coming. I knew she'd never agree to simply be my mistress. But wife? Ha! I have better taste."
He turned to us at that point and walked over to me. With his fingers barely touching the reddened area Vanessa had left, he asked, "Dis all she did, cher?"
"Bein." He smiled. "But I never would 'ave let her harm you. Alt'ough de thought of seeing you two harnessed to a buggy is tempting." I pulled back in anger, but my cock jumped in arousal at his words. God! The images he conjured up were depraved, vile, but also incredibly erotic. Harnessed like a horse to a cart and forced to pull him along as he encouraged more speed out of me with the sting of his whip across my bare ass. Would he control my movements with a bit in my mouth? Would he add a tail for some sick aesthetic purpose?
Remy leered at me as if he could see the images swirling around in my brain. Then he ruffled my hair affectionately. "Non," he said. "Dat would only add full to de fire. And besides, it'd probably cause serious injury with all de people trying to get a look." He grinned and a moment later he was gone. A guard step in just after he'd left and released us from our bonds to begin our day.
Several days went by before Remy brought another woman home to dine. And then Lady Krysti Boutin joined him. She was unlike any of the other women Remy had entertained. There was no pretense about her. She was earnest and sincere and most of all, kind. She wasn't striking like so many of the others. A little plain perhaps, except for her long auburn tresses and her intense green eyes. Yet she radiated a beauty far beyond her peers with her graciousness and her warmth. I would have compared her to Grace Kelly or Audrey Hepburn. Classy, feminine, but still a strength of character. She was no pushover. But she did not demand. She simply made converts of those who didn't at first see eye to eye with her.
And that, in a sense, was my first impression of Lady Boutin. She made a convert of Remy Lebeau. The moment she entered the room on Remy's arm she looked at us with a bit of shock, and then compassion. Gently withdrawing her hand from Remy, she came over to us and knelt down in front of me.
"Oh dear," she said sadly, "have you disobeyed Lord Lebeau?"
I looked over her shoulder at Remy, who was approaching with a bemused expression on his face. There was nothing in his look to guide me in this situation, so when I looked back at her, my expression was blank. She turned her head gracefully to look up at Remy.
"Must they be restrained so? I don't think I could enjoy dinner, knowing they're in pain." She gave a beatific smile and I swear Remy brightened like the sun. "I'm sure you have your reasons for punishing them, but surely there is forgiveness in your heart, even for slaves."
Remy seemed mesmerized by her words, by the sound of her voice. He seemed to have to literally shake himself back into focus. Was she an empath like him, I wondered? Did she have the ability to charm? But I felt none of the intense warmth and pleasure I received when Remy used *his* power. Perhaps he must have picked up on her sincerity, her innate kindness, and it was like a drug for him, a peace of some kind he'd never feel on his own.
"Of course, chere," he said. "For you I will end their punishment."
She put a delicate hand to her throat. "Not for me, Milord. For their dignity, and to earn their loyalty. Punishment should be swift. To draw it out, only puts resentment in their hearts. They are men after all. And you favor them."
Remy looked down at us thoughtfully. Then he straightened, coming to a decision. "Oui," he said, and knelt down next to Lady Boutin. He quickly unsnapped Alex's gag and reaching around him, undid his cuffs. Then I watched with curious relief as he unlocked the chain from my brother's collar. Alex remained silent, only cracking his jaw to relieve the tension and rubbing his wrists.
Remy reached over to me, then and undid my restraints. He stood up afterward, and offered his hand to Lady Boutin. She took it graciously and rose up next to him, as he looked down at us.
"G'on. Go clean yourselves up. You can sleep in de bed, after you're finished," he said kindly.
I climbed to my feet, shaky and stiff, and looked at Lady Boutin. "Thank you," I rasped. Then I looked at Remy. "Thank you, Master." What else could I say? He caressed my cheek.
"You're forgiven, mon cher." He smiled. "Would you like your guitar repaired?"
I stared at him stupidly until he said with a chuckle, "I'll take dat as a yes."
Alex had gotten to his feet by this time and he also thanked Remy, stretching out a hand as if wanting to touch him, but not sure he'd be allowed. Remy took his hand and put it to his lips. Then he pulled him into his arms whispering words that had my brother sobbing in minutes. Remy held him until he quieted. When he released him, Remy wiped away what tears were left on his face and said, "G'on, cher."
He gestured to the bathroom, and Alex moved unsteadily toward it, working out his stiffness as he walked. I stood there, watching my brother, still in somewhat of a daze, unable perhaps to believe Remy was freeing us from our torment. Suddenly Remy slapped me on my hip. "Well? You gonna stand dere all night?"
I gaped at him before finally stumbling after my brother. Alex was already in the shower. I wasn't sure what to say to him. I wasn't sure if I should say anything, or if I was even allowed to speak to him. He kept his back to me, and I wasn't even sure if he knew I was there. So I said, "Alex?"
"Don't start," he said quietly, not turning around.
I stared at the area between his shoulder blades for several minutes before finally having the courage to ask simply, "Why?"
"Why what?" Alex turned to face me. "Why did I fight the guards? Why did I want just Remy to put the gag back in? Why have I not looked at you or tried to speak to you? You know, Scott, somethings aren't always about you. And somethings are just inevitable."
My brother was a mystery to me at that moment. There was so much more I wanted to ask. I started with the most pressing and most obvious. "Do you love him?"
His face grew dark, his eyes drifted into pools of desolation. He turned to the side, clenching his fists and letting the spray of the shower run along his shoulders. "I...yes...maybe...I don't know."
"I'm getting us out," I told him with a fierce determination that belied my fear. "I'm getting out of here as soon as I can, and then I'm coming back for you."
He didn't even hesitate when he turned back around to face me. "And what if I don't want to go back?"
There was nothing left to say. I exploded into action, shoving him back through the spray and up against the tiled wall, barely missing knocking him into the shower knobs. And I kissed him, hard, driving a knee between his legs. At first he wouldn't respond. He kept his lips tightly pressed together and let his hands drop to his sides. But when I rolled a nipple between my fingers, drawing it into hardness, and then twisting. He gasped, and I drove my tongue into his mouth. I could fight unfairly just as well as he could. And I knew he wouldn't bite me. At least not too hard.
All the days of isolation. All the weeks we weren't allowed to speak or touch came crashing down on him, and Alex woke to my desperate passion. He took hold of my tongue between his lips and nursed at it roughly, like a newborn. A strange half gurgle, half whimper rose out of his throat. His arms came around my waist and he crushed me to him. When he broke the kiss he was whispering, "Don't do this to me. Don't make me choose. I'll choose badly."
"Shhh..." I murmured back, nipping at his earlobe. "You won't have to choose when I come to rescue you."
He shook his head with a broken sob. "I just can't believe that you'll escape. I just can't have that kind of hope." He dropped his head back against the wall, shutting his eyes. "After everything that's happened, I just can't hope anymore."
I pulled his head down with both my hands on his face and kissed him again gently. "I've got hope enough for both of us, brother," I said. "And I am *not* losing you to Remy's screwed up notion of love."
Alex couldn't or wouldn't say anything to that, so I just gazed at him for a long time as he kept his eyes forlornly on the floor. Finally, I pulled him back under the shower and tenderly, reverently, began to wash him.
When we walked back into Remy's bedroom, he and Lady Boutin were seated at dinner, laughing at something that had just been said. I'd never seen Remy so relaxed. It seemed as if he'd completely let his guard down with his dinner companion. And she was simply serene. Her laugh reminded me of Jean when we'd first met. Innocent, unshaken by the worries we'd come to face day in and day out. Jean had lost some of that. I don't think I'd ever had it to begin with. I smiled faintly at the laughter and my memories and moved toward the bed. But Remy stopped me.
"Scott. Alex. Come here," he said, waving his hand at us. "I'd like you to meet de woman who has stolen m'heart."
Lady Boutin blushed and said, "We've only just met, Lord Lebeau. Surely you can't mean that?"
Remy laughed. "I mean every word, ma chere. Every word."
I'd come to stand on Remy's right, and a wash of jealousy went through me, but I shoved it back as quickly as I could. And when he wrapped his arm around my waist, his fingers caressing my hip, I shivered, the sense of jealous anger leaving me as I now tried to concentrate on willing myself not to become aroused. Somehow it would have seemed vulgar in front of this lady. She meant no harm to me, and in fact had been my rescuer. Thankfully, my cock only twitched a little with interest.
Alex moved around to stand on Remy's other side. I looked over at him, but he kept his eyes forward, his face passive, even when Remy began to cup and fondle one of his buttocks. His gaze remained just above Lady Boutin's head, fixed on a point somewhere on the wall behind her.
"Lady Boutin, dese are my most favored slaves." He nodded to me. "Dis is Scott." Then he nodded to my brother. "And dis is Alex. Say hello to Lady Krysti Patrice Boutin. First born of de Patriarch of de British Isles."
I bowed, not exactly certain how to greet her. Alex did the same. "Hello," we both said in unison. Lady Boutin laughed delicately.
"Hello, favored ones."
"You see, chere," Remy said, his face beaming with pride, "polite *and* beautiful."
"Yes they are." She smiled brightly in agreement. "I imagine if they were mine, I would also be tempted to chain them to my bed."
The way in which she said this was light and friendly, almost in jest. There was no malice and no sense of exploitation. It was only a comment on how she perceived us. Handsome men. And I couldn't help but laugh and say, "Somehow, Lady, I can't see how I would mind being chained to your bed."
She burst into laughter and Remy swatted me playfully on my ass, surprisingly unperturbed. "I t'ink I'd best hide dem from you, or dey'll be begging you to steal dem away. And I'm afraid I'd let you get away wit' it."
"I wouldn't," Alex spoke up quietly.
Remy looked up at him. "Wouldn't what, cher?"
"Ask her to steal me from you."
I tensed, worried that Remy might think Alex was offending his guest. But he squeezed his hip and asked, "Why not, cher? Don' you like Krysti?"
For the first time since we'd come over to Remy, Alex's face showed emotion. One corner of his mouth twitched up in a lopsided smile and he said, "No, Master. She is beautiful and kind. But I know who I belong to."
Remy barked out a laugh. "And so you do!" He said, pulling Alex down to kiss him quickly. I looked over at Lady Boutin, curious to see her reaction. She seemed amused and...tender was the only word I could think of, as if she were watching a grand romance. And despite the anger I'd felt toward Alex's breaking, seeing my brother and my master through her eyes, eyes that had always witnessed slavery, I couldn't help but agree that their kiss was romantic. The beauty of submission. Lady Boutin smiled warmly at me when she noticed me watching her. I nodded as if we'd both come to some agreement.
Then Remy was patting my ass and telling my brother and I to go to bed. "De Lady Boutin and I would like to finish our meal without such beautiful distractions. Keep quiet, you two."
He said this with good-natured humor, and I relaxed visibly. Alex and I would be allowed to speak to each other as long as we kept our voices low.
When I climbed into bed beside Alex, I pulled him into my arms. He resisted at first, every muscle in his back, neck and arms tense. But then with a sad sigh he relaxed against me and I hugged him tight. "I love you, Alex," I murmured.
He was silent for a long time and I'd thought after a while that he'd fallen asleep. But then I heard him say softly, his voice choked with emotion, "Don't make me choose. Please, don't make me choose."
I only kissed him gently on the back of his neck, nuzzling just behind his ear. "Go to sleep," I finally said. "I just wanted you to know that I love you."
He nodded, but said nothing else. I lay there snuggled next to my brother, unable to get close enough to him, listening to his easy breathing, reveling in the faint musky scent of him, tasting his flesh at times, adoring the moments when he shivered, wanting nothing more. Even if he was afraid to choose. Even if he was broken by the long weeks of punishment. Even if he believed he loved Remy more than me. I could touch him, I could taste him and smell him, and right now, it was almost enough. Only being able to crawl into him, to become a part of him and bring him back from under Remy's influence would have made it enough.
I listened to the sound of his breathing and the quiet conversation between Remy and Lady Boutin, until the weariness of the long weeks of punishment dragged me into sleep. And just as I drifted over that edge into dreams, I heard a whispered, "I love you too, Scott."
A movement on the bed woke me in the night. Remy was climbing in behind me. One of his hands ran lightly down my side until he reached my hip. Then he thrust his other hand underneath my side and gently pulled me onto my back. I looked at him in the dimly lit room, his eyes glowing, but he was looking down at my body as if studying it, memorizing each line, every curve. Finally, he looked up into my eyes. There was lust in his gaze, but also a joy I don't think I'd ever seen. Carefully, as if afraid I'd pull away or perhaps strike out at him because of what he'd put us through, be brought his fingers to my brow and began to touch me like a blind man.
I narrowed my eyes, unable to understand what he wanted. He saw my confusion and smiled, but said nothing. His fingers drifted down across my eyes, persuading them to close. I relaxed back onto the mattress, letting him touch me as he pleased, somehow happier than I'd ever been from his touch. He stroked my face, running a hand across my nose, then his thumb across my bottom lip. I opened my mouth without thinking, but he ignored it and let his fingers slide lower. Around my neck, softly stroking. Sometimes only one finger playing in the hollow of my throat. I could feel his breath so close to my skin and I began to shudder with want. But as I reached up to touch him, his hands, fast as light, pushed my arms back down on the bed and held them there firmly until I understood I was not to put my hands on him.
I groaned in frustration, but he made no sound, either to comfort me or to provoke me. Yet without opening my eyes, I knew he was smiling, a tender smile that asked me to trust him. And oddly, perversely, I did. Shortly after, his fingers began to explore my body again.
As they glided over my chest, circling my nipples without touching, I grew erect. Then one of his hands came away from my body and I felt a chill go through me. I started to shake, but not from the cold. My mouth worked, opening and closing, but unable to speak a word. I could only gasp and moan. And then I felt Alex stir beside me and four sets of fingertips were caressing my flesh.
I let out a gasped "ah", and began to tremble so hard from want that I was afraid I'd shake apart. Every nerve was tingling from the gentleness of their touch. My cock began to weep in anticipation, moving with the tremors that wracked my body, as if alive. If only they'd kiss me. I wanted to beg them for it, but my lips wouldn't work, words wouldn't come.
Four hands drifted lower, nails raking my stomach. One finger circled and circled my navel until it finally began to plunge in and out of the indentation, sending quivers through my belly. Then more raking through my pubic hair, running around my cock, but never close enough to brush. I thrust in upward in need, but two of those tormenting hands pushed my hips back down on the mattress and held me again until I wouldn't move. I tightened into stillness, sure I would die from want, unable to stop the tremors, but wanting those hands to continue touching so badly, I wouldn't have minded my death.
A minute later their fingers began again, moving gently between my legs, stroking my inner thighs. Down they went, over my knees and calves, sweeping around my ankles, two hands gripping them firmly and pushing my legs up to bend at the knees. Three sets of fingertips ran up along the backs of my thighs, as I felt someone shift between my legs. And then a finge, slick with spit, ran along the crevice of my ass. Without warning, it was thrust into me and I bucked. But that wasn't my undoing, though it I was close. I came when lips pressed down against mine demanding entrance and another mouth closed around the head of my weeping cock. I exploded with painful force, arching up as far as I could into that warm luscious mouth.
When I was just liquid flesh on the bed, I managed to open my eyes a hair to see Remy above me staring down with his glowing red eyes. Alex was below, nursing my cock of every drop. I lay there boneless, moving just enough to bring Remy's lips back down on mine. But eventually he broke away and pulled Alex up to kiss him hard above me.
With his magnificent grace and agility, Remy pushed Alex back and slid across me. In one flowing motion, he thrust into my brother and began to fuck him furiously. I'd recovered enough by then to sit up. So many weeks of tactile isolation drove me up onto my knees to stroke Remy's back as I crawled around to my brother's head. His legs were thrown above Remy's shoulders and he was grunting with the fury of Remy's thrusts. As I placed my hands against his temples and bent to kiss him, he hollered into my mouth and climaxed with a force to match Remy's pace. Remy arched his back immediately as if Alex were pulling his orgasm from him, and he began to drench my brother thoroughly. I felt all of it. Like a backlashing current, I felt Remy cum, and I sucked away Alex's breath with my kiss. My God! The pleasure bordered on pain, sensory overload as I experienced not just Remy's orgasm, but the afterglow of my brother's.
It was almost too much and I wrenched my mouth and hands from Alex. He sucked in a breath that sounded like a sob and let his legs drop off Remy's shoulders. Remy collapsed on him with a muffled groan.
I should have felt that warmth, that tingling sensation of bliss that signaled afterglow. I should have been basking in the minute twitches of my muscles sending afterwaves of pleasure shooting to my brain. Instead, I scrambled back against the head of the bed in fear. I was choked with panic. Dropping my head against the headboard, I took in slow deep breaths trying to calm the terror. It had a focus. There was a reason. And I knew then I now had a limited amount of time to escape before Remy Lebeau had me body and soul.
When I opened my eyes, Remy was watching me, his eyes still glowing in the darkness. He knew. I felt sure he knew. It was only a matter of time before I broke just like Alex had and told Remy I belonged to him.
I began to watch for any opportunity to escape. I knew it would have to be at night. The guards would be less alert and there would be fewer on duty. If only Remy stayed away for one night, I could wait for Alex to fall asleep, steal some of Remy's clothes and make my way to the portal room.
I'd arrived in the portal room and from there had been taken to the 'playroom'. It was merely a matter of focusing my memory on the direction of the portal room from the 'playroom'. I was sure I'd figure it out once I was in those hallways and had signs to jog my memory. I was going through that portal, even if it killed me. I knew with a chill in my heart that I couldn't give Remy what he wanted. No matter how enticing it felt to just give in. Any chance I got I'd use to my advantage to escape. And I was well aware that I only had one chance.
After that first night of release, Alex and I returned to our normal routines. My guitar was even returned to me fully repaired. And my lessons were resumed. Yet despite the return to normal, a distance had come between Alex and me. As if in silent agreement, we kept our conversations to a minimum and kept them light and casual. No discussions of feelings were raised. No mention of our status and the future. And certainly no talk of escape. While I mourned this distance, I let it pass, knowing that once I'd escaped I'd get my brother back. There were signs, however subtle, that he hadn't broken completely. At least I believed that. I had to believe it.
During that first week of freedom, Lady Boutin dined with Remy every night. Twice Alex and I were instructed to kneel at the table next to Remy. On those occasions Remy fed us morsels from his plate, while Lady Boutin watched with that same expression of amused tenderness. The rest of the time we waited quietly in Remy's bed until someone came to escort the lady back to her rooms. And every night Remy made love to Alex and me with a passion that, had I not tempered it with fear, would have cost me my heart to him. The fear delayed my breaking. But it was only a matter of time. I was postponing the inevitable. And there was a sense of pressure building inside me. I couldn't rid myself of the feeling that something was going to happen. Perhaps a chance for escape? I didn't know.
On the sixth night after our release, Remy informed us that he'd be away for the evening. He was taking Lady Boutin out for the evening. "And," he told us with a sly smile, "dere's somet'ing important I need to ask her."
I nodded calmly, but inside I leapt at the opportunity his dining out gave me. *He might be gone all night*, I thought, failing to notice Alex deflate, his face become passive, only his eyes expressing his tortured heart. Remy was getting married. And to someone he cared for.
I saw Alex's expression as soon as Remy had left, and knew with some anger that Alex wouldn't be sleeping that night. Like a love sick fool he'd be waiting up for Remy.
What did he expect, I wondered? For Remy to marry *him*? It was ludicrous, but I knew Alex wasn't thinking rationally. He was thinking of love, with flowers, and hearts and romance and commitment. He wasn't thinking of himself as a slave, but as Remy's lover. And that was dangerous. It could lead to madness or punishment. And I couldn't trust him not to betray me if I simply left. So I waited with him until Remy returned.
Remy was floating on air, affectionate, happier than I'd seen him in some time. A truly sincere happiness and for a moment I thought that perhaps I could persuade him to set Alex and me free and send us home. But then he said, "She is beautiful, and she is *mine*."
Lady Boutin, for all her grace and poise and kindness, was still merely a possession for him.
"We will marry next month," Remy announced. "De council's approved. But how could dey not?"
He turned to gaze at us. "Come, mon chers, I feel like celebrating. I won't know de bliss of her body until de wedding night. But I can enjoy my favorite slaves, non?" His tone was light and joking, but his words cut me to the core. He didn't love us. Not true love anyway. While I'd certainly been aware of that fact, his words forced that knowledge into my consciousness.
And Alex, poor besotted Alex. He turned into an automaton, going through the motions of love, but with the play acting of the whore he now believed he was. Damn Remy.
Alex seemed to deteriorate after that. At least in my presence. He slept most of the day. Only getting up to workout or eat. I think he forced himself to do these things because he didn't want Remy to be aware that he was anything other than a good, obedient slave.
Remy was home every night for the next two weeks. And we saw nothing of Lady Boutin. From what I could garner, she had returned to her country to make the final arrangements for her move to Genosha and her new life as consort to Remy Lebeau.
A week later, Tanya and Meredith were brought to Remy's bedroom to prepare us for an engagement party. Alex and I were stunned. We hadn't been shown in public for months, and I couldn't see what Remy's motives were for showing us now. There was nothing for us to do, but to accede to his wishes. The same golden chains were wrapped around our waists. The same red stone was secured in my navel and the blue stone secured in Alex. The same gold cuffs signifying who owned us were placed around our wrists. And as before we were both lightly oiled to highlight the cuts of our muscles and enhance our beauty. Finally, golden leashes were once again attached to our inhibitor collars and we were left to wait for our Master.
But Remy never came. Instead, a guard was sent to fetch us. We were led gently to the ballroom, our escort obviously given instructions to handle us with care. But rather than entering through the large double doors, we were taken in through a side door. The party was in full swing. Couples were dancing on the ballroom floor to the classical waltz being played. Laughter came from the groups of people all chattering and gossiping around the dance floor. No one paid us much attention as we came in, and I felt a wash of relief. Perhaps Remy wouldn't expect us to perform?
Alex and I stood inside the doorway with the guard as he scanned the room for some signal. Then we were moving across the room to where Remy stood with Lady Boutin. I caught my breath at the sight of him, cursing my own admiration. But he looked spectacular. He wore a floor length maroon coat that buttoned from just below his groin upward. The collar stood up square around his neck. A black collarless silk shirt peeked out from beneath the coat, and he wore the same type of black leggings he seemed to always wear with the knee high leather black boots. He had left his hair down, and the russet locks flowed across his shoulders, catching the light as he moved. A gold circlet adorned his brow. And the sigil of his office hung from around his neck. He looked like a figure from some gothic romance novel.
Lady Boutin was equally elegant in lavender and white. Simply dressed, the gown she wore had an empire waist, form fitting as it tapered down below her breasts, one wide strip of lavender, surrounded by intricately woven white lace. The cuffs of her gown brought the neckline down over her shoulders, accentuating her slender arms and long graceful neck. Delicate hands were covered in white silk gloves. She wore her beautiful auburn tresses up, but relaxed around her face. And her brilliant green eyes sparkled with love has she looked at Remy.
I felt a wave of pity go through me, because I knew she was just another piece of property to him. Another conquest. Another slave. Yet when I turned my eyes in his direction, a rush of desire went through me and I realized how easily it was to fall under his spell. He gave Alex and me a dazzling smile as he saw us being led over to him, and I felt the urge to drop to my knees before him and declare my love.
I fought this compulsion with a slight shake of my head. And suddenly we were standing just behind Remy and Lady Boutin. She turned and gave us a light-hearted smile, full of affection. Remy turned also, and took our leashes from the guard, holding them loosely in one hand. Then he turned his attention back to the nobles he had been talking to. I think we were meant to be part of his adornment.
Alex and I stood there for what seemed like hours, doing nothing, saying nothing. It was dull to say the least. I tried to listent to what the nobles were saying to Remy, but their words were mostly empty flattery, sickening in its garishness, in the one-upmanship the courtiers played. At one point Lady Boutin was dragged away by a group of noblewomen who wish to 'get to know her better' without Remy's influence. Several winked and nodded to Remy as if it were some grand joke, laughing as they led her across the room toward other waiting noblewomen.
Eventually the others surrounding Remy drifted away, and for several moments we stood there alone with Remy. He seemed relaxed, not at all uncomfortable with the sudden lack of company. I watched him scan the room for his fiance and finding her, he smiled with such tenderness, I could almost believe that he loved her. Then he turned to face us for a moment.
"Enjoying yourselves?" He asked pleasantly.
Alex and I both nodded.
Remy laughed. "No you're not. You're bored out of your mind. I'll send you along in a bit." He looked back at the crowd, and spotting a servant with a tray of sparkling white wine, no doubt the equivalent of champagne on this world, he gestured for him to come over. Taking two glasses, he handed them to Alex and me. He took another and held it up, dismissing the servant. I looked at him a little incredulous, but he smiled broadly. "A toast," he said, "to de Lady Boutin, m'lovely bride to be."
I looked at Alex for just a second and then clinked my glass with Remy's. Alex held back, the pause noticeably uncomfortable has he looked at Remy. Jesus! His eyes were misting. But then he straightened and said, "to the Lady Boutin, who's won your heart." He touched his glass with Remy and downed the drink in one gulp.
Remy's face clouded as his smile disappeared. "Would you like anot'er, Alex?" He asked as if he were reprimanding an unruly child. "Perhaps two or t'ree more would ease your jealousy, hein?"
Alex's shoulders slumped and he bowed his head. "Forgive me, Master."
Remy stepped up close to him and lifted his chin, kissing him lightly on the lips. "Dere will be time for you, mon couer. Don' t'ink my marriage will cause me to forget you. But do not forget your place. D'ccord?"
Alex nodded slowly, closing his eyes.
"I will call de guard to escort you back to de room now." Remy ran his knuckles tenderly against Alex's cheek, his voice kind and concerned. "You seem tired."
"Milord Remy. I see I've caught you alone for the moment." Councilor Frederico Escalada approached with a beautiful dark haired woman, naked except for an inhibitor collar, trailing behind him. A mutant slave. She had olive skin and large dark eyes with long black lashes. She kept her eyes on the floor until Escalada came to stand in front of Remy. Then she looked up at me with a shy smile. I smiled back, enchanted.
Remy stepped away from Alex and turned to face Escalada with a polite smile. "Yes. I was just toasting my beautiful bride wit' my pets."
Escalada gave him a smug smile. "I can certainly see why you indulge them. They're magnificent."
Remy nodded but said nothing.
A sudden wave of anxiety went through me. Something was going on between these two men, that I couldn't see.
Escalada continued to smile, his thin mustache twitching a bit as he turned and pulled the slave in front of him. His grip was tight, his whole manner condescending and cruel. The girl was just a slave after all, his gesture indicated. She winced at his grip for a second.
"I wanted to show you my newest acquisition, Arienne. A mutant found in Croatia. She's quick-witted and beautiful. Wouldn't you agree?"
"Of course," Remy replied casually. "You have excellent taste. What is her power?"
"Healing factor. Not on the level of an alpha. She heals about fifty percent faster than a normal human."
Remy nodded again and stepped closer to examine the girl. Obediently she let him touch her cheek, open her mouth, examine her even white teeth. He stoked down her arms, cupped a breast, playing with the nipple for a moment, smiling as it hardened. Very submissive. Well-trained.
"Very responsive. How old?" Remy asked.
"Eighteen. I acquired her about three months ago. She fought like a lioness during the first week. But I broke her to the whip soon after."
I scowled. Escalada was worse than I had ever thought. Evil as far as I was concerned.
Remy looked thoughtful for a moment and then turned the girl around. Her back was unmarred. He ran his hand down her back until he cupped a smooth buttock.
"Amazing, isn't it?" Escalada said with pride. "I only had to remove the inhibitor collar and the lash marks vanished within a day. Not even a scar. And -- I hate to be vulgar -- but her vagina never loses it's elasticity once her healing factor begins to work." He smiled slyly then. "It's like making love to a virgin every time. I believe she's one of my best retrievals yet."
"You plan to breed her no doubt," Remy said with just a hint of boredom.
"Well," Escalada pursed his lips, "I brought her here to tonight to tempt you."
"I only sleep wit' slaves in my quarters," Remy replied, turning the girl back around. "You know dat. Alt'ough she is tempting."
"Actually, I meant to entice you into breeding your favorites. Can you imagine the power their offspring might wield? Not to mention the potential beauty."
I sucked in a breath, rage beginning to boil inside me. I felt Alex tense next to me.
"Hmmm..." Remy said thoughtfully. This seemed to pique his interest and I sucked in more air, holding it in a rising panic.
"I'm sure your pets would enjoy mounting her. She is *very* passionate," Escalada continued, his eyes lighting up has he watched Remy consider the offer. "And I'd be happy to allow them the luxury of breeding like humans, rather than my normal methods. It would be pleasant, I promise."
"And if dey can't or won't perform?" Remy asked. "I won't have dem harmed."
"No, of course not," Escalada responded in an oily placating tone. "There is always artificial insemination. Although it's certainly not my preferred method." Suddenly he spoke in earnest, "You must breed them, Milord. You cannot waste beauty and power such as theirs. Give me a chance. You will be welcomed to their first born."
I clenched my hands into fists, clamped my teeth down tightly to keep from saying anything has I watched Remy's face. He couldn't consider it. He knew my fury at the very idea. He knew I'd rather die than be bred by Escalada. And I was sure Alex felt the same way. The idea of escape never seemed more urgent.
Remy looked at the girl for a long time saying nothing. Escalada stood by seemingly calm, but I could see him holding his breath at times, and a slight tremor ran through his right cheek every so often. Finally, Remy stepped back nodding slowly.
"I 'ave been wondering what I will do wit' dem while I am on my honeymoon. Dey'll need watching I suspect." He looked at Escalada. "I had t'ought to send dem to a trainer. Deir are several t'ings dey need work on. But you 'ave a trainer, non?"
Escalada clapped his hands together with glee. "Yes, Milord. I have an excellent trainer. I'd be happy to have him take them on, for the privilege of breeding them."
Remy smiled. "Come see me tomorrow. We'll work out de details."
Escalada clapped a hand on Remy's shoulder. "You won't regret it, Milord."
My mind was in a whirl. I knew I was glaring at Remy, but I didn't care. He'd have to kill me before I'd give in to his demand to breed me.
Escalada and Remy began to discuss his upcoming marriage. He glanced back at us once, a devious smile on his face. And Escalada's eyes set on us several times as they talked, a lecherous look of pleasure on his face every time. At one point, when another courtier approached Remy, he pulled Arienne close and whispered something to her. She smiled demurely and walked over to us, swaying her hips seductively. Beginning to purr in her native tongue she came to stand in front of me, reaching up to caress my cheek. I stepped back shaking my head, but she continued moving toward me, her hands running over my chest.
"Want me?" She asked in broken English. I shook my head furiously and backed up again. Remy had let go my leash earlier to examine the girl, so I was able to continue backing away from the slave.
"Hold still, Scott," Remy ordered from behind the slave girl. He sounded amused. "Surely you still like women, hein?"
I was desperate. Her mouth had come down on my nipple, her tongue flicking at the bud. At the same time her hand gripped my growing erection firmly. She knew exactly what to do to hold me in place. My breath grew shallow and my palms began sweating. It wasn't so much anger I was feeling, but desperation. He couldn't do this to me. I shook my head. "Please, Master, please don't," I begged through gritted teeth.
"Now Scott," Remy's tone grew stern, "It isn't as if you're not enjoying yourself." A small drop of pre-cum oozed from the head of my cock as he said this and I flushed in shame. Arienne ran a finger over it and put it to her lips, smearing them and then wantonly licking the fluid away, a hunger in her eyes.
"Taste good," she said. "Would like to have more." She dropped to her knees without warning and licked the head of my dick, pushing the tip of her tongue into the slit.
"Christ!" I gasped, trying to push her gently away. Although I really wanted to slap her away. And I wanted her to suck my cock.
Remy, Escalada, and the nobleman who had joined them chuckled at my expense.
"He can't decide what he wants more," Escalada observed smugly. "To hit the girl or let her ride him." He turned to Remy. "It won't take long for him to respond to the breeding program. My mares are well-trained."
"So I see," Remy replied.
At that I shoved the girl hard. She landed back on her ass and arms with a yelp. Suddenly I saw Rachael's visage superimposed on the face of the slave girl. My daughter from another parallel universe. A slave to Ahab, and a mutant 'hound'. She'd been forced to hunt mutants for that sick bastard, betraying her own kind. I could see my future with Escalada then. My children, children I'd never get to raise, like Nathan and Racheal and Nate Grey, sold into slavery, forced into this terrible life. The fact that I would never see those children, never know that they were mine if our paths ever crossed, didn't matter. They would still be my children, just as surely as Racheal and Nate were. They were still a part of me. I would never be able to bare thinking that one of my own was kept like chattel. I backed up looking for the nearest exit. Looking for a weapon or a means to my own death. If anything could cause me to think of suicide, it would be this forced breeding. I'd kill myself just to stop my potential offspring from being born into slavery. Several of the courtiers near us looked over curiously at the commotion. There was going to be a show. One of Remy's favorites was about to bolt.
Suddenly a wave of exquisite warmth and pleasure ran through me. "No," I whispered as my legs buckled underneath me. Remy was using his charm on me. I hit the floor hard, bruising my knees.
"He'll respond, Frederico," Remy said as he stepped to me. "But I t'ink right now it's too much for my poor boy. Come see me tomorrow."
Escalada was pulling Arienne to her feet. He nodded. "Certainly Milord. Tomorrow." He left then, an excited bounce in his step as he dragged the now weeping slave girl along behind him. I had the terrible feeling she was going to be punished for my rejection.
Remy stood over me, a smirk on his face. Then he turned to Alex, who'd stood by solemly through the whole event, knowing there wasn't anything he could have done. More than likely, if the girl had come on to him, he would have let her suck him off. "Take him back upstairs," Remy said. "See de guard at de door and tell him I said to escort you back. No trouble, cher. I don' want to 'ave to punish you tonight."
Alex swallowed and nodded. Then he bent down and helped me to my feet. He pulled one of my arms over his shoulder and grabbed me firmly around the waist. I was still drowning in the blissful sensations and unsteady on my feet. But by the time we'd made it to the door and out of the room, Remy's power had diminished immeasurably. I yanked away from Alex and stood furiously in the hallway as my brother told the guard what Remy had ordered. He took our leashes without a word and led us back up to the bedroom.
Go on to Part5
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