After the auction, Tom took me to a side room and ordered me to kneel. He cuffed my hands. Richard, Melinda and my two new owners soon joined us. Richard and Melinda were beaming like they won the lottery. Well, they probably had. The man was on the phone.
"Yes, we have her. Arrange that the money gets transferred immediately. Sixty-four million, that's correct."
He was in his late forties, all business, hard face. She was probably slightly older, her face a mask from the results of several face lifts, tall and lean to the level of being emaciated, dark blond hair, heavy make-up. Both were lighting up cigarettes as they directed their attention to their newest purchase.
The man took the word. "When can you get the issue with her menstruation fixed? With such an investment, she will need to get into action with no delay."
Melinda answered. "We'll take her to the compound today and I'll do the surgery tomorrow morning. She'll be ready to go within forty-eight hours unless you want something else done."
The woman consulted with the man.
"What about her sex training?" Richard probably thought that he qualified as a teacher.
"We will take care of that." The woman smiled, "If there is one thing we are expert in, that's it. What do you know about her? Has she been in the business?"
"We selected her purely based on her genetics. Otherwise we would not have been able to change her skin color. She is no virgin but I doubt that she has a lot of practice. Indeed she will likely try to oppose." Richard answered from experience.
"That's good. Non-consensuals make it so much more interesting for our clients and hence give higher returns. She will definitely be in a price category of her own and, I assume, still oversubscribed. Quite a unique investment indeed." The woman patted my head.
"As long she keeps it up for the next couple of years and there is no downtime. How soon will she be able to have sex after the surgery?" The man was obviously already working on the balance sheet.
"Under usual circumstances, two weeks. However we can give you some antibiotics which should allow you to cut it down to a week. And of course there is no restriction on getting her started on oral or anal sex." Melinda smiled at me.
"Do you want to leave her with your own handler while we get the procedure done?"
They declined but reminded Richard that they would hold the Corporation accountable if anything happened to me.
"Don't worry. We will hold her safe. Our security systems permit no escape and the surgery is routine."
Within an hour, Tom, Melinda, Steve and I were climbing into the helicopter. As we were leaving, I saw the other passengers changing to their own boats, some with their new purchases, and several helicopters were hovering nearby to pick up others.
I was feeling empty and numb, simply accepted my fate. What could I do? As Richard said, there was no way to escape. Maybe once I was at the club, a client would alert the police. For the rest, I did not dare to imagine what they would expect from me.
It was early evening and a guard was waiting when we landed on the dock. Tom asked me to pee as we were walking up to the lab. I obeyed and followed him to the room behind the steel door. He washed me for the forth time that day and gave me water to drink. He was looking sad but said nothing.
He locked me into the cage, no pellets, no water bottle. I was to go to surgery the next morning and have another piece of my womanhood removed.
The night was full of nightmares. I relived the auction, felt their hands on my body, heard the gavel time and again. "Get into action"… "No down-time"… saw Richard licking his lips, Melinda's smile. I woke up repeatedly covered in sweat and ultimately just sat there, felt the seconds ticking away and moving my life towards its destiny.
Still I went to the theater like a lamb hoping not to wake up from the surgery. Unfortunately I did, steel bars around me, feeling sick and sore.
I was in the cage, this time no mattress to recover. My head was spinning and I was retching even though there was nothing in my stomach. Tom and Melinda came and I fell asleep after their quick exam.
Tom woke me up later, forced me to eat the pellets, take a couple of pills and drink some water. I was just about to lie down again when he said, "Come on, you need to get up. We go for a pee."
I thought he could not be serious. He pulled me out of the cage, leashed, cuffed and muzzled me, then ordered me to my feet. I got up, felt dizzy, my abdomen was hurting and I was swaying. He became angry, gave me a sharp tug on the nose ring. "Wake up and focus!"
He walked, half dragged me outside. It was already dark. The security guard was waiting. Tom was carrying the cattle prod, apparently determined to make me relieve. Why was he so uncaring? Couldn't he just give me a break?
He took me straight down to the beach, asked me to get on with my business. I peed but could not relieve.
"If you don't obey, I'll ask the guard to touch you."
His voice was tense. I could not believe my ears. Where was the Tom who cared, who had been sleeping next to me, brought me chicken and rice? I looked up at him tears in my eyes, shaking my head.
Tom looked over to the security guy who had been following the events. "Go and touch her as much as you want. She will be gone by tomorrow so this may be your last opportunity."
The guard was only too keen to do it, approached me whilst pushing his gun onto his back. When he hunched down, Tom stunned him.
He must have put the cattle prod on full intensity; the guy was out and flat in a second and without so much as a gasp. I was so surprised, I shrieked.
"Shhhh, be silent, we are getting out of here."
He cuffed the guy, hog-tied his legs with two other pairs of handcuffs, and gagged him with his socks and several layers of tape which he pulled out of his pocket. After taking the gun, he urged me down the beach towards the cottage. Fifteen minutes later I saw a black shape on the sand. It was the box in which I had arrived.
"Get inside and be silent. Nobody is to see or hear you. I will get you out once we are on the road."
I hesitated but then saw the blanket and that made me comply. I folded myself inside, he closed the lid.
Five minutes later I heard a motor boat approaching. From the voices, there was only one other man arriving. I did not recognize his voice and given that Tom did not want him to know about me, I did not move when they lifted the box into the motorboat.
The boat was powerful but my stomach did not appreciate the ride. I was swearing at Tom having fed me those pellets. Throwing them up behind the muzzle would most certainly choke me. I swallowed, clenched my stomach, tried to relax, still it got worse and I was more than thankful when we landed half an hour later.
The box was transferred to the back of a car. I heard Tom saying, "Here is the money and you have never seen me." Tom got into the car and we drove off. That's when it sunk in. I would be free.
Tom kept driving. I finally screamed at him, wanting to get out. He shouted, "Keep quiet!" Who was I to argue?
The box had not grown since I had been in it last time and with hands cuffed on my back, it was highly uncomfortable. I tried to move them down behind my back. After endless wiggling and several shouts of Tom to be quiet, I succeeded and fell asleep.
We were on a rocky road when I woke up. Once the car stopped, I expected Tom to let me out. Instead he apparently decided that it was time for a nap. I screamed, however I got no answer.
I was wondering about Tom's plans. I was also scared, not daring to think what would happen if I returned to my normal life. Imagine a leopard woman working as a journalist at a newspaper. Maybe the archive would be a good place to hide. They said that the treatment was irreversible, the vector only known to the Corporation. Was there anybody in this world who could restore my skin color?
My abdomen was still hurting and it was only hours later that I went back to an uneasy sleep.
I was woken up when Tom opened the lid. He helped me outside. We were in a dense forest, a small dirt road nearby, the SUV half hidden behind some bushes. I heard and saw a small river between the trees. Once I had looked around, I realized that Tom was staring at me. I was staring back, woman to man. I felt awkward behind the muzzle and registered that he was holding my leash. I tried to take hold of it with my cuffed hands. He ordered me to kneel. I mimicked surprise.
"Kneel!" he thundered. I shook my head.
"I still have the remote."
He pulled it out, his eyes serious. I got to my knees, almost crying. He cuffed my hands behind my back then walked around me.
"I do not know yet what to do with you. I like you and I do not agree with what the Corporation did to you, or you going to that posh club to fuck half the world. But I don't want to be caught by the police and go to prison for having been involved with the Corporation either. You have to give me some time to think. Do you understand that?"
I nodded, reassured about his motives but also concerned that I was at his mercy.
"Let's go and have a pee."
He took me down to the river and got ready to take care of his own needs. I hunched down and focused on my ablutions. He washed himself, stuck his head into the water but apparently thought that I was clean enough.
Back at the car, he produced two cardboard boxes with soggy cold hamburgers, fries and two cans of coke. He ordered me to kneel, removed the muzzle and handcuffs and also cut off the thong hanging down from the nose ring. I got to eat with my own hands. A few bites into the meal, I moved from my knees into a sitting position and he did not object. It was among the best meals ever eaten on this planet, the sun brighter and the air more refreshing to breathe than I ever thought possible.
After the meal, he gave me more pills to swallow. I showed him my sticky hands and pointed to the water. He nodded and followed me. I washed myself, almost screaming of joy. I turned around to face him, smiled. He took hold of the leash.
"Sorry to spoil your mood but you have to get back into the box."
I shook my head.
"As long we are on the road, you are in the box, as simple as that. You can get out when we stop and I am sure nobody is around. If you promise to be quiet, I leave the cuffs and the muzzle off. If you object or make noise, I tie you up and gag you, your choice."
Well, it was not much of a choice. As I climbed inside, I saw that there were a number of bags and other gear packed onto the back seat and next to my box. He obviously had emptied his living quarters and was on a permanent move.
The lid closed and I was back in the dark. I tried to get comfortable, rearranged the blanket and went to sleep
When he took me out the next time, it was dark and we were again in a forest. He had driven off-road and it seemed we were the only people around. I was hardly out of the box when he put one side of a handcuff around my right ankle and hooked the other side to a chain, maybe ten feet long, which he had attached to a tree. He quite obviously did not want me to run away.
Afterwards he set up camp; tent, fire, the whole deal while I tried to get some privacy behind the tree to take care of my full bladder. When a mixture of rice and meat was cooking over the fire, he produced more cans of soft drinks and motioned me to come closer to the fire. I pointed to a water tank. He passed it to me and sat down on the other side of the fire.
"A friend of mine has a cottage in the Appalachians. It is far up in the mountains. We will hide out until I have figured out what to do. The Corporation paid well and I have a decent stash in my bank account so we should have no problem to survive for a while. Ultimately I will have to look for work. For the time being, I assume you will just stick with me. Let's see how it goes."
The conversation was somehow one-sided. We ate and he gave me more medicine to swallow.
Afterwards, he pointed to the tent and moved the chain on my ankle cuff to another tree right nearby. I crawled inside and got under the blanket, wondering whether he would want sex. I remembered the night at the cottage when he was the only one in my whole universe. Could I love him? Stay with him? Would he let me go if I wanted to leave?
He joined me later, naked. He simply made sure that I was comfortable then fell asleep next to me. I was contemplating to check his clothes for the keys of the handcuffs but didn't know whether I really wanted to get away. I did not feel that I was ready to confront the world yet.
We drove for three days. I spent the days in the box, bored out of my wits and counting the seconds until he let me out in the evening, however I did not oppose. We stopped for gas and he seemed to replenish our food and drinks from the gas station stores, otherwise we were on the road. While at the camp, he cuffed one of my ankles either to a tree or the bumper of the car. Fortunately, the surgery had no aftereffects and the pain in my abdomen subsided.
Halfway through the afternoon of the third day and after driving for several hours on rough roads, we arrived at the cottage. It was at the edge of a forest, looking out on a mountain meadow, a spring nearby. The inside consisted of one larger room with a wood stove, table and chairs and a smaller room almost entirely filled with a bed, a hunter's cottage. Ablutions were done into a pitch in the forest, washing up at the spring.
He removed some stuff from the car, blankets, two bags and the food. Then he locked the car. The gun remained inside. I helped him carry the things inside before we explored the immediate surroundings.
"I came here for hunting. The next cottage is miles away and probably nobody there given that it is not hunting season. So, I doubt we will be disturbed. Isn't this a beautiful spot?"
For the first time he was looking relaxed. It was also the first time that I saw him in something else than black T-Shirt and black pants. In the checkered shirt, blue jeans and short haircut, he looked like your every day neighbor, young, unconcerned and with a smile that would have convinced even my grandma. He was studying me and I blushed. He saw it and his smile became deeper.
"I am glad we did not manage to destroy you. Do you know that you are very beautiful?"
I looked away, tears all at once stinging in my eyes. He came closer, put his hand under my chin and forced me to look at him.
"You are very beautiful, not just because of your strange color but because of who you are. Never forget that." Then with a smirk, "And I like these."
He touched my breasts. I looked down, still shocked over their size and the obscene sexuality that was oozing from them. I shook my head. He pulled me closer, wrapped me in his arms and kissed me softly. "Yes, they are beautiful." he whispered.
After a while he asked, "Can you cook?"
I looked up at him, nodded. "So what about you stir something together while I get us more firewood?"
He took me back to the cottage. I sorted out the food and decided to make potatoes, pork chops and green beans. He brought the firewood and lit the stove. The utensils and ingredients were quite limited but ultimately the simple meal came together.
"This is very good." He really meant it. "What about you do the cooking for good? I am sick of my own five dishes."
I was more than happy to do that or anything to negate my status as a sex symbol on display.
After cleaning up, there was not much more to do and we went to bed. So far he had not touched me. This time he pulled me onto his shoulder, put his arm around me and gave me another kiss.
"You tell me if and whenever you are ready. I will not urge you."
I was surprised. After a while, I turned to my side and fell asleep.
We had two peaceful weeks, simply existed, took long walks and enjoyed nature. Nobody else was around and the weather was mostly good. During the first day at the cottage, my breasts got badly sunburned. Afterwards, he gave me a shirt to wear while we were outside but wanted me to be naked while at the cottage. Since he was the only person around, I did not mind.
Tom was a strange guy, did not talk much and could spend hours whittling away on a piece of wood or doing exercises with equipment he constructed from a couple of logs, rope and several eyebolts which he screwed into a couple of trees. He indeed was a personal trainer. He designed an exercise schedule for me and made it fun like he wanted to apologize for the times he had me training for other purposes.
Even though we slept in the same bed, I made no move to have sex with him and, to my surprise, he accepted it. In other aspects he made it clear that he was in control. He kept me in his view and followed me outside for my ablutions, quite obviously not wanting to take any risk.
After two weeks, we were running low on food. He did not want to go to the local village so to not attract attention and questions, instead told me that he would drive to the next larger town and that he would be away for most of the day. He asked me to go and pee and I knew immediately that he would lock me up. By now, I also knew that he would get his way whether I objected or not.
Indeed, back at the cottage he was waiting with two pairs of handcuffs and the chain. I had to stretch out on the bed. He put the cuffs around my wrists and ankles and used the chain to lock them to the massive head and foot board so I could no longer get up. The bit and the muzzle were last; even if I tried to scream, the noise would not carry very far. He covered me with a blanket, boarded up the windows and left.
I was furious. I was still not free to determine over my life. Also, he did not trust me to stay put and hidden. After a while I resigned to my fate and spent the day sleeping, daydreaming, wondering what had happened to my apartment and stuff, and what Tom would do when we had to move closer to civilization. He could probably find work quite easily, except that his salary would be several times lower than while he was working with the Corporation. Would he lock me up every time he left the house? He didn't seem to have an answer and neither had I.
I knew something was wrong, the moment he returned. He came into the bedroom, agitated, his face strained.
"They took all my money."
I was looking at him for a more detailed explanation. What did he mean? Was he robbed?
"They emptied my bank account. I have no more money than the two hundred dollars with which I left this morning. I phoned the bank in Miami but they refused to provide any answer by phone, simply stated that the owner had closed the account and that any query would have to be done in person at their main branch. I am scared that if I show up, somebody from the Corporation will be waiting."
He indeed looked scared. I pulled on the chain. He got the keys and released me. I put my hand on his shoulder. He turned away.
"I knew that the Corporation is powerful but I never thought that they could get access to another person's bank account. Of course, they had all the account details given that they transferred our monthly checks. What shall I do?"
He kept on rambling while I tried to get dinner made. He had purchased only a few things, a large bag of rice, beans and cheap meat. I cooked part of it and spiced it with herbs that I had found on one of our excursions. Once more, I could contribute very little to the discussion. We went to bed. He was restless and neither of us slept much.
The next day he chained me again to the bed and drove away with no further explanation. I was scared shitless that he would not be coming back or that he would do something stupid and the Corporation would find us. What if the bank traced the phone call? Would he try to find work in town? When he returned in the evening, he saw that I had cried.
"Don't worry. I will find a solution." Well, I was not so sure about that.
He was gone for each of the following days. He was not telling me what he was doing but was sometimes looking at me in a strange manner. I was wondering whether he was considering giving me back to the Corporation. He could probably quite easily get his money back, and more, if he returned me into their clutches. I had no way of asking and his silence proved as nonnegotiable as the chains to the bed.
It was several days later. Tom returned and I knew from his face that something had changed, a decision reached. After he let me off the bed, I made dinner, watching him. He did not speak until we had eaten and cleaned up.
"Come over here."
He was turning his chair away from the table and pointed in front of him. I hesitantly approached him.
It was a strange request however I complied and slowly got down on my knees. He took a pair of handcuffs and locked my hands behind me. I became scared, didn't know whether to look at him or down in front of me.
"I was thinking about this for a long time, and I have made up my mind. I have to get out of the country, disappear. If I stay around, take a job, the Corporation will find me. They have my social security number, they know everything about me. They managed to eradicate my bank account; they will manage to eradicate me, one way or another. I can't live like a hunted animal, always in fear that they will find me."
"I will go to South Americ a or Australia, start a new life where nobody knows me. As you can imagine, I cannot take you along."
I saw his feet twitching. So? Would he let me go? Would I have to confront the world on my own?
"I was contemplating what to do with you. I wondered what you would want. As hard as it is, I doubt that you can ever return to a normal life. The Corporation has removed the possibility. The way you look, the world will destroy you, or you may even do so yourself. So, I decided to not give you a choice. Instead, I chose for you."
"I was thinking about who would be able to give you a life where you are safe and taken care of, somebody who would not exploit you for profit. You may remember him. There was a man at the auction who seemed concerned about you. He was even bidding."
He described the man and I realized that he was talking about the man with the blue eyes. I knew where this was leading to and began to vigorously shake my head. I tried to say no but instead only made my usual animal like noises.
"Listen to me. I made inquiries about him. He is filthy rich, very private, and rumor has it that he is simply looking for a companion, a kinky companion. I got in touch with him. He seems like a decent guy and we agreed that he would pick you up tomorrow. And yes, I do have a personal advantage and I am sorry for that. However you are part of what brought me into this situation. He will give me a certain amount of money. It will permit me to make a start in my new life."
I was hardly listening to him anymore. I knew there was some truth in what he was saying but ultimately he was simply selling me to somebody neither he nor I knew what that person would do to me. And it was not an option which was up for discussion. He had already made the decision and I had no say.
I was screaming, wanted to make the future disappear, hurt him and did not know how. He knew well why he had cuffed me. I felt him taking hold of the collar and connecting the leash to it. I was again an animal.
He took me through to the bedroom where he motioned me to get into bed. Instead, I curled up on the floor, crying. He watched me for a while then cuffed my ankle to the chain which was still slung around the footboard, and removed the handcuffs and leash. After spreading a blanket over me, he went to bed.
I woke up with a headache. The sun was up. I heard him in the kitchen. Even though my body was hurting from the hard floor, I did not move. After a while he came in.
He did not say anything, released me from the chain, applied the handcuffs and connected the leash. When I did not move, he changed the leash to the nose ring. He took me outside for the morning ablutions then ordered me to kneel while he was preparing a plate with scrambled eggs, bacon and toast. I was not hungry, just closed my eyes.
"Come on, girl, eat. We have gone through many things together, don't let me down now. Without me, you would be fucking two dozen people a day, like this you have another chance to life. Take it and believe that you can prevail."
I was just kneeling there looking down at the plate, tears streaming down my face. I had been lying awake during the night and thought about my situation. The worst was that I could not figure out any other option. Staying at the cottage and hiding out was impossible and I had no better idea. I did not want to get exposed to other people, the least the police. From there it was only one step to get into the evening news. No way!
He finally got a fork, sat down next to me, removed the leash and began feeding me. Once done, he took me outside to the stream and washed me. The water was cold but I no longer objected. He rubbed me dry until my skin tingled.
"They will be here soon, so cheer up, first impressions count."
They came by helicopter, a pilot and him. I was in the cottage, muzzled with the bit between my teeth, hands cuffed behind my back and leash tied to the leg of the iron stove. Tom met him outside and they talked for a long time. I assumed about me. Anger was dwelling up. I was dealt with like a thing, an animal, no opinion, nothing to say. They decided over me.
Tom and the man came to the cottage. Even though on my knees, I was looking up at them, angry and defiant. I could not stand the blue eyes for long, looked away. It struck me that I did not even know his name. Tom did not tell me. It made me even more furious.
He asked Tom to take me outside. Before I knew what was happening, I was lifted into the helicopter. The box was already waiting secured behind the seats. I turned around to look at Tom.
"You need to get inside. If other people see you, you will be in danger. You will be fine, don't worry."
And that was it. As the man closed the lid over me, my last glimpse was of Tom standing next to the chopper lifting his hand. To wave good-bye, to keep the dirt from getting into his eyes as the engine was activated, I do not know.
We took off and as the helicopter was gaining height, my life was literally taken into a void as scary as the empty space below me.
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