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Review This Story || Author: Veronica Leigh Marquette

Bound And Chained

Chapter 14


Kaj was still ill as she returned to her room. She couldn't figure out how a blind man had gotten in the collection. Surely the Merican King wouldn't have tried to play her for a fool. Well, the only thing she could do was see if she could track down Jerrick and the boy that had come with him and Caytin. And ask.

The Men's Quarter's were empty. So she was getting ready to go look in Trinna's room, when a strangled cry, stopped her.

She waited outside Caytin's room, until it was quiet, before knocking.

There was a shuffle behind the door, before it opened. Jerrick stood there, still naked. "Mistress." He dropped to his knees at once.

"Get up, Jerrick. I'm here to talk to the boy you bled for today."

"His name is Steffon, but he goes by Steff. He says that the only time anyone ever calls him Steffon, is when he's in trouble." Jerrick slowly got back to his feet. "He isn't is he?"

"Go get cleaned up, Jerrick, I need to talk to him."

Jerrick looked at her closely. "You aren't going to try to hurt him, are you Mistress?"

"Of course not. You go on and do as I tell you. I have just a few questions for him. Nothing that will run the risk of getting him hurt."

"One moment, please, Mistress." He turned to look at the young man in the bed, clutching the covers to his throat. "Steff?"

"Who is it Jerrick?"

"Your mistress. She has a few questions she wants to ask you. Now I want you to remember. As long as I can stand, if there is anything due you, I take it."

"Stop scaring the boy, Jerrick. I already told you, I am not going to hurt him. I only want to ask him a few questions."

"I'm sorry Mistress, but he's had a bad day, and I had to drug him to get him to where he is so far."

"Go get cleaned up. I won't eat the boy. You are getting to be as bad as Cay. No wonder Trinna took you as hers." She reached up and patted Jerrick on the side of the face. "Now hop."

Steffon shifted uncomfortably as he felt the bed move as Kaj sat beside him. He kept trying to hold on the fact that so far, no one had hurt him. That this is the woman who had backed Caytin up when he had stepped in and stopped Jerrick's whipping. Had given her pledge that they were all safe.

"Okay now, Steff, correct?" Her movements were slow as she reached and gathered the young man to her. "Ssshh, you are in no danger. I only want to ask you a few questions. I won't hurt you. On my oath."


"Will you sit up here with me, and answer a few questions for me?" She pulled him on up into her lap, the covers he had been clutching in front of him, were the same ones that she was sitting on, so when she pulled him into her lap, they didn't follow.

"Hey," he tried to grab his protective coverings as they were taken from him.

"Oh, please. You were brought to my city, as slaves. And you are worried about being exposed?" She gently took his hands, as they frantically tried to cover his genitals. "Stop." A single, soft spoken, word but the effect was as if she had screamed at him. He froze where he was, sitting naked in her lap.

Jerrick had returned, and stood watching. He was a little worried. Kaj was known among her men, for the most part, as being a fairly kind and benevolent mistress. But she also had the reputation for being a bitch when it came to anyone not following her orders when, she, gave them.

"Now, Steff, will you answer a question for me?"


"Yes Mistress, Steff." Her tone was gentle.

Steffon froze. "Yes Mistress." He was going to have to get his shit together, or bad things would happen. "I'm sorry, I just," he didn't cry, he didn't try to pull away. He, did, sit where she held him, not moving.

"Have had the hell scared out of you and drugged all in one day. Yes, I understand. But you belong to me. Now for how long, is anyone's guess? Jerrick has put you behind him for now. So it is probably only be a matter of time before my little sister snatches you up to make it a permanent state of being for you. But then again, you are blind. What safer place for a blind man to be, than in the keep of a Healer?" She stroked his hair. "Now, the question I have for you is just this. I am having a hard time believing that your King would risk everything knowingly including a blind man in those he brought with him. Now, I will not count one man as breaking the agreement he made with me. But you had to know the risk. What would have happened if, I were as brainless and mean as Kitrina? My demand was one half of his healthy men between the ages of fifteen and thirty-five. What possessed you to risk certain death of your people?"

This time Steffon did try to pull away, but Kaj just held him where he was. "No, you got it all wrong." He tried even harder to get away from her. "Jerrick!"

Jerrick moved to come to the bed, his natural instincts to calm the boy. But the look Kaj gave him stopped him in his tracks. "I'm right here Steff."

"There were two hundred and thirty-seven men left in our city, he, he brought a hundred and eighteen." He tried to explain. "I wasn't one of them. My folks begged and bribed a few to keep me between them on the march here." He wasn't sure if he was in a situation where crying was called for. But he was close to it anyway. "Ask, I swear, he will tell you a hundred and eighteen, and then count them. They are one hundred and eighteen down there. I was an extra, he doesn't know about me."

Kaj nodded. "Thank you Steff, I was having a very hard time trying to imagine that my new father by wedlock was willing to risk his people by trying to pass off a blind man as one of his healthy men. Oh, I wouldn't have hurt your people. What's one or two, more or less, when he brought over a hundred? But still, I would have thought less of him had he done it. Now will you answer me another question?"

"Yes, Mistress."

"Why are you here? I would imagine being blind would be hard enough as a free man. I am having a hard time seeing you wanting to be a slave."

"My parent's they're poor, Mistress." He didn't forget who this woman was. Even as befuddled as he was, he didn't forget. "Already one of the brothels that catered to those that like to hurt boy's had offered them fifty gold for me. They turned them down, but they were poor. How much longer could they afford to refuse? I'm blind. Would never amount to anything. Never marry, have kids, hold a job. I was forever dependent on them. Or the Catimine's, they made a habit of raiding my village at least twice a cycle. I would rather die than be taken by them." He took a deep breath, pausing in his explination. "Then your demands were made public. It cost my family everything they had to bribe some of the men to help me, but they did. So I came here. Better a hope of a chance to live. Than living with the knowledge that I would eventually be sold, or captured." He hung his head. "At least here, there was a chance, that I wouldn't spend the rest of my life hating it."

Kaj nodded. Of course, poor boy, no wonder he had come. "Jerrick, come here. I have gotten what I needed from him. I am sorry if I upset him again." She waited until Jerrick sat beside her on the bed, before slowly handing the man in her arms over to him. "See what you can do to calm him. Now that I have the answers I needed, I have a new one in my rooms that probably is more scared than this one is."

"Let Caytin know, Mistress, I took care of the problem." He chuckled as Steffon tried to hide in his arms. Like he had anything to hide behind. He was as naked as the boy was.

"You and Cay are going to have a talk soon. With all these new men, those that do end up here, it is going to be very hard for him to be faithful to you alone, and do his duty to me with them."

"Mistress, I used to be a soldier. He and I have already talked about that. I know all about duty."

She nodded, turning to leave. "Then I will leave you to yours." And she left.

* * *

Rook was trying so hard, to hold himself in check, but the feelings he was being given, as Caytin held him close to him, as he took his virginity, and Fain busy blowing him, made any kind of control over himself, hard. Already, he had lost the battle for control twice. And Caytin had, warned him, if he lost it again he would be punished. Which meant Fain would be hurt. "Please" he sobbed at the feel of a mouth against his balls. Tongue playing with the ring that had been placed there.

"Soon." 'Poor boy,' to think anyone could be this responsive. He was worse than even Toby, who used to cum, almost as soon as he had looked at him with a threat of toying with him.

So Rook leaned back, gritting his teeth fighting not to give in. No matter how much he wanted nothing more than to just let go. He was terrified what would happen if he did.

Caytin knew that the boy wasn't going to last much longer. He either gave him permission to surrender to what he was feeling, or be forced to watch Fain be whipped for his failure to control himself. "Little one, pull back and turn so he can show you the same pleasure you have been showing him." He whispered kissing Rook's ear. "Lean over and share this with him, sweety." He gripped his hips as he began to move with greater purpose, as Rook leaned forward to return to Fain what he had given him so far. "Now, boy, you can cum."

Fain moaned as he felt both Rook's body tense, and the mouth that had locked on to him. As, Rook cried low cumming.

Rook struggled to get his head back, as he returned from where Caytin had pushed him. Trying to concentrate on the man under him. He had been taught how to do this, without choking, but not with someone still blowing him, as another fucked his, so hard, it almost hurt. Which just made, it, all the better.

Kaj slipped back into her room, almost laughing at the sight on her bed. All the men in her house, were busy tending to the new ones, one way or another. Either by holding their hands as they were taken to the Temple, or like Jerrick and her two consorts, and getting them past their first submissions. She moved to sit close to the bed, deciding to just sit quietly and watch.

Caytin had shown her long ago, how lovely watching as he amused himself with one of the many men or bedwarmers in her home. And as she watched as her first was taken by the tightness of her third, who was sharing his attention with her second, who was intent on seeing to it that the boy was pushed past all reasoning with his mouth. She had to agree with him again. It was indeed lovely."

Fain pushed away from Rook, going to Caytin as the older man pulled back, gasping for air. "Here, Master, let me." He pushed Caytin back, to tend to him.

The first time Fain had gone to do this, after their lovemaking, had been the very night of his punishment. It had taken the younger man almost an hour to convince him that it was not the same thing. He wasn't being made to eat a solid chunk. That cleaning him afterwards was normal for him. Mer had been doing it to him since almost the night he had saved him. The Catimine's used to force him to eat their shit, so this was nothing. And the thought of anyone being forced to do that had sent Caytin into tears again.

Rook lay there trying to catch his breath as Fain had moved past him to submit to his master/mate. It hadn't hurt. Kerri had been so very wrong. And okay so maybe he was a slut, but that didn't seem to be something that they looked down at here.

"Come here, Rook." Kaj's soft and very aroused voice from the side of the bed. "Cay and Fain are going to be a bit busy for a while, so you come and be with me."

He almost fell from the bed in his hurry to go to her. "Mistress." He fell into her arms, willingly.

She held him, amused with his willingness. "I take it you enjoyed your time with your consorts while I was otherwise occupied." She held him close.

Rook did not blush this time. "It was, Mistress, they didn't hurt me." He was still so amazed that they had used him like they had. But it hadn't hurt. If anything, he was ready to gladly offer himself again.

"Of course, they didn't hurt you." She laughed, popping his butt, bringing another yelp from him. "Silly boy. Cay has spent the whole afternoon trying to convince you that he wasn't going to hurt you. And you are surprised when his word was good."

"I'm sorry, Mistress." He hung his head, hiding it in her shirt as they listened to Caytin's moan's as Fain gave him his submission.

"Isn't it sweet, love? Fain is such a darling."

Rook looked up at her. "I, you won't make me do that too, will you?"

Kaj chuckled. "No, sweety. Fain is unique in his submissions. Poor boy, he was held and tormented by those monsters that have all but decimated your old homeland. For him, what he is giving Cay, is only what he had come to know as what a slave is expected to give his master." She held him, stroking his hair as they watched the two men on the bed. "Oh, I have a question for you. Did you or your father know about Steffon?"

"Who?" He wasn't quite all the way back from where he had just been with Caytin and Fain.

"The boy, that Jerrick did, as Fain has done with you, and put behind him. The blind one."

He shook his head. "I tried to tell the master." He shook his head, this time trying to clear it. "I mean Cay. That he wouldn't do that to someone who already had something that big to deal with."

"How many were supposed to come?" She believed the boy, but it was always best to cover all the possibilities.

"One hundred and eighteen." Rook looked from where he had been watching Fain and Caytin. "I swear, Mistress. If this one, came, if he took the place of one of the other men. My father didn't know it. He knew that if you moved against us, we would die. Even back when our ancestors signed the treaty with yours, we were, no, match for you. Now, after over twelve cycles of war with the Catimine's there would have been no way he was going to win. I wasn't even counted among the number. I was the single sacrifice for your son. The rest, they were only to prevent a war we knew wouldn't have won. It would have been a slaughter."

She nodded. "That pretty much matches what the boy told me. Make sure you remind me, before your father returns home. To see to it, that I send enough gold to pay the boy's parents for him. They had to bribe some of those that were coming to take care of their son on the trek here."

Rook looked at her a little surprised. "Why?"

"Because, he is blind, and his family is poor, but they were willing to spend everything they had to protect their son. Even if it meant sending him into the chains of slavery. I will not take a fertile man from his mother, without paying her. You are right, the other men, they do not count. They were a peace offering, to prevent a slaughter. But this one, his parents figured out how to protect him. You probably don't understand this, being that you are royalty and far from destitute. Had Steffon's parents been even a little less caring of their son, he would have been sold to a brothel long before now. The one that wanted him had already offered his mother fifty gold for him. So I will see to it that a purse of five hundred goes home to her. With my, thanks. Blind or no, he is fertile. His blindness is due to a childhood accident that was not taken care of in time to save his sight, and nothing he could possibly pass on to any of the children he fathered."

Rook nodded, he wasn't sure, but he thought he remembered some of the men, fussing over a single man. He had thought that this one was one of the boys that the soldiers sometimes kept for their amusements. But now, he couldn't imagine what his life must have been like. Even as bad as his life had been. He at least still had his sight. "Do you think, there is anything that can be done for him?"

Kaj looked down at Rook. "You might be young, and timid as hell, but you have the mindset of a ruler." She kissed him. "I don't know honey. Trinna no, I'm sorry to say, not a chance. She is still only a journeyman, and still has a lot of work to do before she could even hope to hold up under that kind of skill it would take. But perhaps, once the Temple is finished seeing to the men that your father brought. There is very little that a fully trained and skilled Healer can't undo." She let her fingers trail down his body, to tease his nipples lightly, making the tiny bells in them tinkle. "Do you think, we can get our other two mate's to scoot over just a bit? I do believe it is time, we consummated our union."

* * *

Thalin stood as Kaj led her three into the dining hall. Watching with sharp eyes as his son took to his seat, carefully, wincing, just a touch.

It had been a rather interesting, and very fun, time. His first with his mistress; he had failed to hold himself in check, almost the moment she had pinned him to the bed, and took him. And even after she had let that slip slide. He had failed her again. Which after a lot of begging on his part got him spanked, instead of Fain. Which did nothing more than shame him with his lack of control again. His mistress had almost dropped him, laughing as his release dripped down her leg. The whip might scare him to death, but his mistress's hand that was no punishment for him.

Kaj was very pleased. Even after all that this day had cost her. All in all, it had turned out well. Yes, it was going to cost her five hundred gold pieces but if that boy that Trinna's man had took in. If he was even half as sweet as he seemed. It was going to be worth it.

Gabe escorted Miri in. The young woman tried not to look at her father or Kaj. But just held close to Gabe, who just wrapped an arm around her.

"So, little sister, did my boy do right by you?" Kaj teased the girl.

Miri hadn't quite got to the point of being as embarrassment dulled as her brother so she blushed, a, hot red.

The rest came in ones and two's or occasionally as it was with some of the men of her house in-groups of four and five. Trinna led Jerrick in. Steffon holding to his arm, trusting the man not to let him stumble. Several of the Priestesses entered. Each of them had spent their day, taking care of the new men that were now members of their world.

"So, Kaylin, I am sure that Thalin would like to know, how are the men doing?" Kaj nodded at Winna who served her and her consorts first.

"Healed, collared, fed and tended to Kaj." She smiled as she took a plate. "Also after that fool had taken her vexation out on Trinna's man for protecting one of them, very frightened. I had to resort to putting them all to sleep, just to get them to calm down long enough for me to investigate." She looked to where Jerrick sat Steffon at his side. Looking very uncomfortable. "So what have you to say Kaj? I am going to have to tell them something. That one, there are several that think him either dead or hurt."

"Tell them you saw him. That he is no worse for ware, and that they have done what they were paid to do. He has been placed safely in a house. Has a mistress, that will not see him hurt." She looked to Thalin. "Before I forget. I owe one of your women five hundred gold pieces. Before you leave, make sure I give it to you." She cut into the meat on her plate. "Oh, and Winna, make sure you tell the kitchen staff, that they did themselves proud. The dinner is excellent, as always."

"Yes Mistress."

"Why do you think you owe any of us, anything Kaj?"

"I don't owe you anything Thalin. But Steffon's mother, I will not take a woman's child from her without paying for him. I have been assured by both him and Rook that you did not know this, but there was one extra man to come." She nodded at Steffon who sat there silent, listening to what she was saying.

"What is he doing here?" Thalin demanded. "My oath, Chieftess. I did not bring him."

"Yes you did. You might not have known he was there, but he was brought with the rest you brought. There weren't a hundred and eighteen men that went to the Armory today, but a hundred and nineteen. His parent's had begged and bribed some of those that you had taken to place him between them and see that he made the trek safely. Journeyman Healer, Trinna, who is my sister, her consort placed himself between the boy and one of the guards. I will deal with her later. To protect the boy, no one would listen when he tried to explain that the child was blind. Bled to protect him. So to his mother I send a purse, with five hundred pieces of gold for him. It is the standard price for a fertile man. He is now a member of my house, and I will not let him be taken from me."

Thalin looked at Steffon trying to decide if he should be angry, or not. "You do understand, he was not part of the men I brought? That I had refused his father's plea?"

"Yes, Thalin. I do. It wouldn't have mattered if you had known of his presence. His blindness wasn't due to anything at his birth, but a childhood accident. He is fertile. And he gives Jerrick someone to worry about. Personally, between you and I, I happen to think watching my sister go through wanting to pull her hair out as her man worries himself sick about the boy, is going to be well worth the gold."

The meal continued on quietly. Miri was quiet. Her blush had never quite left her. She knew that every one in the room, had, to know what she and Gabe had just done.

"Mistress, please, if you keep acting like this, my mistress is going to think you're ill with me." Gabe whispered to her.

"It's not you," she muttered to him. "Or at least nothing you can help."

Steffon finally decided. He was hungry enough to try to eat what was infront of him. "Jerrick." He turned towards the direction he knew the man was. "Would you please tell me about where everything is,"

Jerrick put down his fork, turning to help him. "The plate is about three inches, on the table, in front of you. Your knife is on the right, your fork on the left of it." He helped Steffon with them. "Were you old enough to be able to tell time when you had your accident?"

"I have been using the clock as a visualization since I was seven."

Jerrick nodded, reaching to turn his plate. "Okay then son, your meat is at twelve, you have some kind of bean dish at two through four, another vegetable at five to seven, and a third from about eight to ten. Then your bread is by your meat, at about eleven. Do you need me to cut it for you?"

Kaj laughed at her sister who gave her a dirty look. "Welcome to the wonderful world of adulthood, little sister."

"Only until I can see if I can get his eyes healed. If I can do that, I won't have to watch 'my' man fuss over him like he is."

"Keep telling yourself that Trin, if it helps you to sleep at night. Jerrick is almost as bad as Cay is in the nurturing area. Remember that he has spent most of his life, working with young men like that boy. Besides, he's your first consort. You are a Healer. What better for a Healer than to have a man that actually doesn't faint at the sight of blood?

Steffon just sat, there, head down. He hadn't realized what slavery, even if they didn't hurt him, would mean.

"Ignore them Steff, they're not talking about you. It's just you mistress, is mine's older sister, and she is teasing her." He looked up at Caytin, a dark look in his eyes. "Forgive me, Master, I know you had planned later to spend some time with me. But if my mistress, doesn't mind, I will take my 'Lover'." He bit out the word. "And see what I can do to calm him. I realize, Sir, that no one is looking at him, but he's blind, so he doesn't." No, he hadn't planned anything like this, and he was looking forward to a little time with Caytin. But damnit, the boy didn't need this.

"Yes, better her than me." Kaj shook her head as Trinna went to deal with Jerrick and Steffon.

"King Thalin." Kaylin decided to draw everyone's attention away from where it was. "Several of the men, were worried about their children. I was not aware that their would be orphan's left."

"Other than few men I have left, I rule a Kingdom of women, old men and orphan's. For every child that still has a father, there are at least fifty that do not, and of that fifty, at least ten that don't have mother's either."

Around the table, there were sounds of protest and anger, as the women tried to accept that any child could be expected to live without any to love them.

"Great and Merciful Mother." One of the young Healers snapped. "You asked for the wrong thing, Chieftess. You should have insisted that he bring the little ones to you. Yes, it might have taken longer, but children grow."

"I was not aware that there were that many orphan's Ellesia. Had I known that, don't you thing I would have done something about it?" She looked at Thalin. "Damn you. You send men to steal our children, when you have more than you can take care of. Why didn't you just gather these lost little ones to you and raise them. They could then be your new chance."

"Kaj." Kaylin spoke before Thalin had a chance to defend himself. "They have been poisoned. My sister's and I have spent the day, staving off death. The children all of them, and not just the orphan's. Will not live another three cycles without help. "Jaffrey came to me, once I returned to the Temple. Worried that she hadn't healed your boy there totally. She is just a novice, but even as young and newly trained as she is. Once her embarrassment at seeing a naked man was over. She had time to think back on what she had felt from him. "Your third consort is dying of the same poison that was killing the rest of the men. Your second and Trinna's consort had been, but when Trinna healed the three you took, back the night of the raid. She healed them of that as well. It is not a difficult poison to overcome, if you know what you are doing. But if I understand what I have been hearing from the men. The Healers were the first things that the Catimine's killed. They have no honor. They killed unarmed men and women who's only call was to life."

Kaj stood up, looking at the Merican King. "Then you are thrice damned for being a fool. When your Healers had been killed. You should have petitioned my help. I have a sister who is a Healer. My consort, and soul-match's Grandmother is a Healer. Had you come to me, cycles ago. I would have stopped them. If for no other reason, that they violated the first law of warfare. You do not kill a Healer, even if they are from the other side. Healers do not look at the color of a uniform when they go to save a life. Only to the sanctity of it." She looked around. "Tallin?"

Her son was up and by her side at once. "Mistress?" He knelt at her feet.

"You have been at me for almost the last two cycles, to let you go to one of the other houses as a fertile man. Even if it were just as a breeder. Do you still feel that way?"

"Yes, Mistress." He didn't understand what was going on now.

"You do realize, Thalin, that I really do wish Gabe had been able to leave your daughter with more than just fond memories. You were worried about a baseborn child taking your throne after your son. Well if your son is near the fool you are, you should have prayed for it." She looked down at her son. "Tallin, stand up. I am your mother first your mistress second." She ruffled his hair as he stood. "The amount of help we are going to have to give our neighbors is vast. But I will not have any beholding to me. To think they should feel thankful for what is theirs by the grace of the Mother. So, if this old fool doesn't protest. And my new little sister is agreeable. Would you like to be her consort? It is very obvious that the ruling family needs new blood."

"Mistress!" Caytin grabbed her hand. "I know my son isn't your heir, but he was the child we conceived the night we joined souls. Would you send him into a land still rife with war?"

"No, but I would send him with the women that I have pledged their help to him, as I send my own warriors to see to it that this disgrace is cut down. I would lead it myself, but I can't. No woman who is with child can."

The silence was so complete in the room that it was almost too loud to stand as the room stopped and just looked at her. "I would have told you later tonight Cay. Trinna just verified it before all hell broke loose. By, this time eleven moons from now, you are going to be the happy father of another boy. That make's three for me." She looked back to Thalin. "So, I have your son as my third consort, will you accept mine as your daughters first? Keep in mind with the way you look at things, he is my firstborn, and a prince."

Thalin looked from her to Tallin who was standing beside her. "I already have Miri's husband picked out. And forgive me, but it is not some half-grown boy. I have to know, should Dannis be killed, that Miri's husband is strong enough to rule.

Tallin laughed at the man. "Half-grown? There isn't a single man in your Kingdom that I can't take down. Up to and including you or your son. My father is master to every man of my people that isn't free, I have picked up a lot from him on how to rule men. Like my mother said. I am her firstborn. My parent's were tougher on Rhea and I than they were any of the others in my house."

"We were not always as peaceful as we appear now. Nor do I think we always will be. There are more cities and Kingdom's than just yours and the Catimine's. I see to it that every child, regardless of gender, is trained in the arts of self-defense." Kaj hugged her son. "My little sister there, she could do much worse than my boy. If, she, takes him as her first. He is too much like his father in that, no one would ever touch her or any child they had together."

"He's a slave Kaj."

"He is also my son. With the exception of you and maybe your son, he will never bend to any one other than his mistress."

Thalin looked from her to where his daughter sat, trying hard not to be noticed. "Miri, the only reason you are here is because I couldn't stop you. I also have had the man I am planning to have you wed since the day Emily was killed."

"I won't marry Edwin Father. How many times am I going to have to tell you that? He was almost thirty cycles older than Emily was. Which makes him near fifty to me." There was a surprising note of iron in her almost whispered voice. Finger's dug into Gabe's arm. "If the chieftess is willing to connect her blood to ours like that. I would rather wed a half-wit than Edwin."

"He has waited for seven more cycles, waiting for you. How do you plan to explain yourself to him if you show up with a husband? He has spent the last near thirty, knowing he was going to marry one of my daughters." He demanded.

"If she is willing to agree to be my mistress. And this man says anything to upset her. It won't be her that explains things to him, but me." Tallin moved to where Caytin sat. "My mother is right. I am my father's son. No one will ever threaten her, not as long as I live." He looked back to Kaj. "Mother, with your permission."

"Go on, Tal. You've been waiting to do this for a long time." She watched her son move to kneel by Miri's chair. "Dear, you are going to have to ask him if he will be willing to give himself to you, be your first consort." She smiled tears of pride standing in her eyes. She had been holding back her son for so long that the boy was about to drive her mad with his whining. Well, now she could do several things at once. Keep the vow she had made to Fain, put into motion a new chance for her people, get her son off her back and see that her new extended family was safe. Even if it was inspite of the fool that was their king.

"Go on Mistress. Tallin has been very close to me since even before he moved into the Men's Quarter's. He is no more likely to hurt you than I did. And my mistress is right. With as many things that have happened to your people, you do need new blood." Gabe encouraged her. "You have to ask if he is willing to be yours."

She looked down at Tallin, but this time, as troubled as she was with all the people around, she didn't blush. "If you would have me, I have known all my life that I was destined for an arranged marriage. If you are willing, I know I would rather take you, than any of the men my father plans to force on me."

Tallin smiled. "Yes, I am willing to be yours. I give you my pledge, my life, love and seed. Is yours." He bent down and kissed her feet.

Miri looked down at him not at all sure what to do next. She never thought that she would ever own anyone. She hadn't even owned herself. But now, this man, he was giving himself to her.

The silence just continued as Miri sat there looking at Tallin. Who knelt, face pressed against the floor. "For the love of, kiss your new consort girl." Kaj snapped.

The room erupted in laughter, as Miri did blush as she held out a hand to Tallin, who was up and in her arms with one fluid motion.

"Finally." Caytin sighed. "You do realize, Mistress, we are going to end up grandparents?"

"Damn, but I feel old." She squeezed his fingers. "Miri," she disturbed the kiss that Tallin was still sharing with her. "If you give me your word, that you will stand in the Temple before you leave my city, and wed my son, I will consider the matter taken care of. And he and Gabe can take you from this room, and you may indeed be his mistress. But, you will wed my son, or I will keep you here until you do. I owe his father that much to see that his son is taken care of. He is not just a breeder."

"Damn, that's scary." Jerrick had finally calmed Steffon enough to get him to start eating. "You know Mistress, when you older sister starts talking like that, I want to cross my legs."

Trinna snickered. "You haven't been here the last almost two cycles. It was getting to the point that Cay was about to have to start chaining Tal to his bed at night. He is a fertile male, and we just don't, or at least before today, have that many left."

"So, what would have been the big deal if he had slipped out and made friendly with one of the local girls?"

"Would have been a major blow to her pride. He is her son. If he were to 'slip out' as you say and ended up fathering a child on a girl, without a cuff and mark. It would have been seriously frowned upon. And I would have ended up healing his back several moons running as his father whipped him bloody." She looked stern. "We are lucky, our first is a girl. But keep in mind that hopefully, sooner or later. You will give me a son. And then it will be your turn to worry about him and his behavior."

"No offense, Mistress, but I hope you have nothing but girls." The whole concept was so twisted from what he had grown up with. Here it was the man's place to worry and fuss about things like pregnancy and reputation. He would have never believed it if he wasn't watching it play out in front of his eyes

Review This Story || Author: Veronica Leigh Marquette
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