Dear Reader, I submit this story for publication, not that I expect a single person to believe it’s true in any aspect, but because I must write it down to sort out the events that it relates, if only for my own sanity. It is for my own therapy that I write, not for your enjoyment. Comment on it as you see fit – it is of no concern to me. –Darios. 10/12/84
Lucy and I entered the mansion, followed by Veronica and Mirela. The noise of the crowd diminished with each step as we ascended the long curved stairway to the master bedroom. What seemed like hundreds of candles lit the interior of the mansion, casting eerie shadows upon the walls.
I expected the two girls to drop off and return to the others, but they hung with us all of the way into the bedroom. Four large candles dimly illuminated the room, each candle burning with four wicks aflame. A huge four-poster bed filled one end of the room, with two dressers against the wall, a closet, and five mirrors! Whoever had lived in this house had apparently been somewhat vain.
There were faint sounds of movement just outside the walls of the room and I wondered what the others were doing. Were they using the other rooms to satisfy their own lustful longings? Henri had told me that the towns’ people used this day as their nadir day as well, so that idea was not too farfetched.
Lucy’s hand was moist and I felt a slight tremble as she guided me towards the closet. With a motion of her hand, Veronica was at my side, reaching up to unclip the cape that hung off of my shoulders. I moved to brush her hand aside, but she brushed mine instead.
“We know the motions, sir,” she said quietly, “you do not. We will act out the legend exactly as the original participants did; we only ask that you allow us to do this.”
Gently chastised, I put my hands down and let Veronica remove the cape and hang it in the closet. She stepped back to me and began to unbutton my shirt.
“I am the Gypsy girl, Lenuta Miklos, your servant. My companion is Rosa Janisla, of the Janisla clan. She is Ileana’s personal servant.” My shirt was removed and I tensed as Veronica unbuttoned my jeans and began to lower them. I looked over to see that Mirela had loosened the strings of Lucy’s corset and had begun to pull the strings through the eyelets. The bottom portion of the dress had been removed and Lucy stood naked, except for the silver chastity belt, from the waist down.
My cock responded and I moved to cover myself.
“You will please the Mistress this evening, Count Stephan,” Veronica said with a sly smile, as she helped me step out of the pants. She slipped her hand into the pocket and handed me the key to Lucy’s belt before she placed the pants in the closet. My hands covered my erection and I felt very naked standing there in front of the young woman.
“May I stay with you, Mistress?” Mirela asked Lucy.
“Oh, Rosa,” Lucy gasped, “What would your father say? No, dear, I’m afraid that would not be allowed.”
“My father sleeps off the feast you prepared for the clans, Mistress, he’ll not know.”
“I don’t think that…”
‘Rosa’ pouted and stood with her arms crossed. “You promised you would teach me the ways of love making, Mistress. Would this not be a perfect opportunity to further my education? Besides, I am almost of legal age.”
A little more quietly, Lucy bent down and said, “Almost? You have just fifteen years of life to you; besides, the Count has just returned from a two month journey, I will not share my bed with you this night.” She cupped Rosa’s chin and kissed her forehead.
“May I be chained to your bedpost, Mistress? I will not enter your bed, only let me observe.” Rosa stood to take the combs out of Lucy’s hair to allow its bulk to fall about her shoulders.
“I would be agreeable to that, only do not disturb us, girl!”
I looked around for Veronica but it appeared she had already left the room. Lucy had gone to the dresser and opened a drawer, sorting through items within it until she found what she was looking for. She approached Rosa with a silver ring and opened it to fit it around the young woman’s neck. A four-foot chain attached to the ring slid through Lucy’s hand until she grasped the end and wound it around the bedpost, hooking a metal clasp through the last link to hold the chain in place.
Lucy’s hand went out for me and I took it in mine.
“Come darling, I have waited in chastity for your return.” Her hand tightened around mine, leading me to the bed. “I am quite anxious to feel you near me…” she stood at the side of the large bed with her legs spread and her hands up behind her head, holding her hair up a little bit… “to feel you inside of me…”. There was a hint of desperation in her voice that I knew was not merely a part of this role-play we were involved in.
I took a split second to mentally thank Annette and Emilie for ‘settling me’ earlier in the day, because the sight of Lucy standing there waiting for me to remove that chastity belt very well might have made me cum already. A more sensual sight I had never witnessed, nor have I seen since. The candle light cast ever moving shadows, enhancing the curves of her flesh, her muscle tone soft and rounded, the contours making her look so beautiful, so inviting.
The key turned in its little hole and the chastity belt fell away, dropping from my hand onto the floor beside me. I stepped forward and held Lucy firmly, pulling her close to me, our lips touching softly at first, but then engaging with the pent up lust of the last couple of weeks.
We lay back onto the bed, Lucy under me, and her legs went around my torso, pulling me against her with some force. I pushed forward with my legs, propelling our intertwined bodies into the center of the bed, bouncing slightly as we landed. Lucy moaned and reached up under the pillow to retrieve a condom that had been placed there. In seconds the skin had been rolled down over my own and I positioned myself to enter her.
Our kisses increased in intensity, only occasionally breaking for air, as Lucy clung to my back and pulled me towards her with desperation. Thoughts of driving my cock fully into her flashed through my mind, but somewhere…a thought made me hesitate, it was Martine, earlier in my room, her velvet voice telling me that Marc would’ve made love to Lucy tonight with all the tenderness a man could give a woman.
I pulled myself up slightly, allowing our frantic kiss to be broken. Lucy looked up at me, her eyes filled with lust and her eyebrows up in question. I lowered my head close to her ear and whispered, “I told you yesterday that I would touch you today, and when I did you would cum for me.” The tip of my cock touched the folds of her labia and Lucy suddenly inhaled deeply. Pressing forward gently, I entered her and felt her fingers digging into the flesh of my shoulders as she gripped me tightly. Her head pressed against mine and I felt her pressing forward as if in a sit-up crunch.
“Cum for me now, Lusineh.” Slowly, with all of the tension I could direct to my penis, I pressed forward until I was fully engulfed by the warmth of her body.
“Oh God!!” Lucy cried out as her breathing became suddenly raspy and she clenched my body as she climaxed. She cried out again as I held myself rigid inside of her, pushing forward and up slightly to rub my pubis firmly against hers, allowing her to grind against me as the orgasm continued to assault her senses. My face was next to hers and I felt wetness on my cheek as her emotions overcame her.
With her orgasm subsiding, we began to make love slowly, a gentle rhythm being established and maintained, in a way relaxing the tension that we had both experienced. Our mouths met in playful kisses and her hands roamed my body from my butt to my head, feeling my muscles strain as I moved against her.
Our limbs became intertwined and I leaned to the side to roll Lucy over on top of me. Her hands pressed against my chest as she began to rock herself atop my cock. My hands went up to hold her breasts, to fulfill the weeks of longing I had endured at the thought of touching them, of feeling their firmness, of pinching her stiff nipples!
I gripped the little brown nubs firmly and squeezed. Lucy’s head went back, her brown curls flowing down her back, and her hands came up to support her head. She cried out as a second orgasm crashed upon her, her hips moving more rapidly now to grind against me, to further her pleasure.
We returned to that frantic state of arousal as the sounds of our pleasure filled the room. I heard other noises, slight at first, but then more intense. While still rocking in Lucy’s embrace, I managed to lift my head and glance to the foot of the bed where Mirela was chained.
The young woman was naked! Her eyes were closed and it was obvious she was masturbating herself to an orgasm, coinciding with her Mistress’ above her on the bed.
Lucy cried out again as she leaned back to increase the tension of my cock within her. The position felt so damn good! I held her hips, instantly forgetting Mirela, as my cock convulsed and my seed filled the condom. Continuing to cum, I pressed my butt upward, intent on giving Lucy every inch of pleasure that I had to offer.
Bang! Bang! Bang! The loud pounding on the door startled me, and Lucy shrieked, turning to look behind her.
“Rosa! Are you in there?” a man shouted through the door. “Rosa!” More pounding, and then the door burst open. Lucy cried out and fell off of me, pulling a sheet around her naked body as Roger, Gabriel, and several other people crowded into the room.
“Papa!” Mirela cried out.
The anger on Roger’s face was obvious. “What are you doing? Why are you naked?” His glance shifted to Lucy and me, his fists clenching. “What are you doing to my Rosa, you high class bitch?!”
“They…they raped me Papa!” Mirela cried out. “Oh Papa, they had their way with me, and then they chained me here.”
What?!! What the fuck was she talking about? I looked at the Mirela, wondering why she would say that. She had stripped herself…she had been fingering herself, I saw her!
Then I remembered that this was the way things had occurred over three hundred years ago on that night. This was the legend as handed down by Irena’s ancestors, but how? If only the Count and Countess were in the room with Rosa, who was it that witnessed what the girl had done? Who, other than the Avakian’s, knew she was lying to cover her own wanton actions, to escape her father’s wrath? This was a little confusing, and to tell the truth, with the group of angry ‘Gypsies’ standing in front of me I didn’t give the inconsistency any more thought.
Gabriel and his mother, Lilian, ran to Rosa while Roger took a large wooden club that was handed to him by one of the men standing behind him. The look in his eyes made me back up against the sturdy oak headboard and begin to wonder how far they played out these little fantasies. I was pretty scared, and I wrapped my arms around Lucy, protecting her.
Gabriel lifted Mirela and passed her, still naked, to one of the men who carried her from the room. Lilian looked at us and pointed her finger our way.
“You will pay for this, you Moldavian scum!”
“Curse them, Dumitra!” someone behind her shouted. Others joined in, calling out for the woman to curse us. “Curse them!”
“It’s not true!” I blurted out, not remembering I was role-playing and didn’t know the lines. “She…she asked to be…we didn’t…”
“Silence Avakian!” Dumitra growled, as her hands went out to her sides and she stepped towards us. The entire group moving forward with her as she lifted her hands in the air and shouted,
From this day until the end of time
A curse be upon the Avakian line
As moons wax and wane
At full dost your blood boil, your mind insane
The Beast you shall transform
No option to reform
No serenity shall you enjoy
Lest punishment be employed
Long in life, condemned to strife
Hunted shall you be, never to be free!
Her arms came down and Roger shouted out, “Take them!”
The mob was upon us and we were dragged from the bed, naked. As we were hauled towards the door I was distracted slightly by a movement to my right. I looked over to see the closet door close slightly, Veronica standing behind it, peering out in fear.
The witness! Lenuta Miklos! She’d been in the room the entire time!
I was pulled roughly from the room by several of the men. I looked back to see Roger and Gabriel holding Lucy between them and then forcing her back towards the bed. Marc pressed past me and entered the bedroom, closing the door behind him.
That’s the last time I saw Lucy that night.
I had lost all sense of time. The major partying had all but died out. Earlier, sounds of people screaming and yelling in the mansion could be heard. It may have been Lucy, but quite often people would come running out of the building, still yelling, and I could see it wasn’t her. Chaos was the word that kept coming to mind as I watched the citizens of Melonya around me.
It turned out to be a beautiful night for being outside. Not too hot, a slight breeze kept the bugs away. Earlier, it hadn’t been quite as dark as the headlights of the cars parked around the perimeter of the grassy expanse had been turned on, flimsy cloths of different colors hung over them to give a muted glow to the area. Now, with the majority of the cars gone, the darkness hid the intertwined shapes dispersed randomly across the plush grass, sometimes only the sounds of passion were heard with no apparent source to be seen.
I shared a large blanket, spread upon the ground, with Jack and his wife, and Louis. After some time, two of the shapes off to our left near the cars, arose and headed towards us. As they came closer I saw that it was Henri and Paula, Louis’ wife.
Louis reached up and took Paula’s hand and pulled her down into his lap.
“Hey, babe.” He kissed her and then asked, “You took it easy on the old guy didn’t you?”
“What the hell you a talkin’ ‘bout, boy? It was me that took it easy ona her,” Henri said, as he sank down next to me and gave me a look like he was going to die. Every one laughed as Louis and Paula continued to make out. Henri later confided to me that they had only been chatting about Louis’ up coming birthday and making some plans.
“Who’s seen Martine?” Henri asked, peering out into the darkness.
“She was called in about half an hour ago,” Louis said. “If you hadn’t been off having your way with my woman you woulda known that, old man.”
Another shape approached our group from the direction of the mansion. “Hey guys,” Emilie Devereux said as she sank down next to me and put her arm around my shoulder.
“How are you doing, Darios? You okay?”
The look in her eyes told me she was really asking me if I was okay with what she and Annette had done to me the previous day. I remembered the day that Lucy and I had worked at Marie’s house and Lucy had submitted herself at Marie’s feet, and I repeated Marie’s response, “We’re good, Emilie.”
The woman smiled widely, delighted that I would use those words, and hugged me.
“Oh, Henri, I think Lucy is about done with Martine,” Emilie said. “She should be out here any time now.”
“Great,” Henri replied, “We’ll be gettin’ on soon I hope. Any idea who’s next? She should be sated soon, I would think!”
The woman giggled, “The only one left up there is Jerome.”
“Oh, fuck,” Louis said. “Good luck to her tonight.” He shook his head and held Paula close to him. “He’s going to give the old girl a rough ride, I just know it.”
“She’ll be okay,” Emilie said, “Annie and I were just with her, and she’s still got some life left to her, and you know Martine will just want to cuddle for awhile.” The woman put her head on my shoulder and then looked up at me. “She’ll want you with her after Jerome, Darios. You’ll go to her, won’t you?”
Looking at the faces of the people round me, I saw nothing but slight nods as they all seemed to agree that I should go. “Um, sure.” I hadn’t considered that, and was just hanging around, waiting on Henri to take me back to his place. “Sure, I’ll go in if you think I should.”
“She’ll be exhausted, son,” Henri said. “You just stay with her out here until she’s ready to come back into town. There’s food in the kitchen, but there’s no power out here, so you’ll have to use the fireplace to cook. Lucy knows what to do. Veronica and Irena will be around, too.”
Emilie took my hand and placed her head close to my ear. “Annette’s in Lucy’s room and was really hoping you’d come up there,” she whispered.
“Huh? She does?”
The woman was already standing and pulling me upward to my feet. Something about Emilie and Annette…they were both rather dominant, and I was getting the impression they were a couple. I didn’t know much about that type of relationship, but I always thought one would be dominant and one submissive. Maybe that wasn’t always the case, though.
As we walked up the steps to the front door, I questioned Emilie, “I thought Martine and Lucy were in her room?”
Emilie guided me up the grand staircase towards the upper floor. “No, no, that’s the Countess’ chambers,” she said quietly. We waved at Jerome as we passed him, relaxing on a velvet-covered couch in the hallway outside the chamber, and then turned down a hallway. In the candlelight I noticed what appeared to be two pictures hanging on the left wall with curtains over them. Emilie noticed my curiosity and put her finger up to her lips to make sure I remained quiet.
She led me to the curtain and split the seam in the middle with her finger. I peered in and saw the interior of the Countess’ chamber, Martine and Lucy naked on the bed holding each other and talking quietly. Lucy laughed about something and suddenly rolled over to straddle the cop’s beautiful wife. Lucy’s breasts hung inches above Martine’s head and the woman lifted herself onto her elbows to nibble at the stiff nipples above her. Lucy arched her back and lowered her body against Martine’s raised thigh, rubbing her sex into the soft flesh that was held there for her.
I looked around the interior again, seeing the mirrors and realized I was looking through one of them! Backing away I felt a blush spread across my cheeks and down my neck.
“We were being watched, too?” I whispered. The muted noises I had heard outside the room earlier had been people moving around the outside perimeter of the room to look in through the mirrors!
Emilie nodded. “Don’t worry, you were fantastic!” the woman gushed, as she pulled me away and carefully re-adjusted the short curtains. “Someone always watches while the first person is in the room because that’s when the tradition is played out. The family who portrays the Janisla clan always watches, and this time it was really special because it was Gabe’s first time to see the truth. There were a few people at each of the windows to observe the tradition; I was on the other side with Annie.”
I was speechless, stunned, dumbfounded… embarrassed… relieved… yes, relieved that no one had dropped that little bit of information on me before I had gone into the room with Lucy. I would have been too nervous to do anything. Luckily I had been so focused on Lucy that I had totally forgotten about Mirela.
The woman pulled me away from the curtain and across the hall. “This is Lucy’s room,” she said as turned the knob and opened door.
What the room looked like, I can’t relate, because upon entering the room I saw only one thing: Annette Molyneux suspended, naked and spread eagle, by ropes around her wrists tied off to hooks mounted in the ceiling, and ropes around her ankles tied off to eyelets screwed into the floor. She was gagged by a large black ball, her long black hair tied into a severe ponytail, and small round weights swinging freely from clips tightly pinching her nipples.
She watched me as I entered the room. It was the same look she gave me while she was examining Lucy’s welts on that day I was forced to flog her. It was a serious look, one of unbridled lust.
I felt Emilie’s hands around my arm, guiding me towards a trunk at the foot of the bed pushed up against the far wall. I felt as though this was all some sort of bizarre dream, much like many of the other dreams I had had since stumbling into this little town. I don’t think I had fully recovered yet from the shock of knowing Lucy and I had been observed as we made love, and now… I looked back at Annette Molyneux… oh god, she was so beautiful.
My guide opened the top of the old footlocker to reveal a large assortment of crops, floggers, and honestly, a bunch of stuff I had no idea what use they could be put to.
“I’m not strong enough to give her what she wants, Master,” Emilie said as she dug around and finally withdrew a thick rattan cane and handed it to me.
“She always says I quit too soon because I don’t really want to hurt her. Maybe it’s true. But you…” her voice trailed off. “We’ve all seen what you can do.”
“But…” I was speechless. She had brought me there to cane Annette? Holy shit! I looked back at the bound woman again. Dear lord, she was fucking gorgeous! And waiting for me to cane her… I didn’t think I could do it.
“Please!” Emilie begged, sensing my hesitiation, “please do this for us, Master Darios.”
Taking a step towards Annette, I asked, “Are you sure about this?” It appeared to me that the doctor was shaking her head, no. She was saying something, but the gag was doing its job very well in preventing her words from being expressed.
Emilie stood on her toes so she could whisper in my ear, “We’re role playing, Darios. As usual, this is her idea, but I’m never very good at it. With you here… and being an outsider and all, you’re the perfect person to help us.”
Turning so that Annette couldn’t see my lips, I whispered, “She doesn’t look like she wants to do it.”
Emilie peeked around at her friend, and whispered back, “She really gets into this role-playing thing, Master Darios, and I bet she really is a little bit scared, I know I would be. But it makes her super horny to protest and struggle,” she looked at Annette again, “God, just look at her!”
I could feel the woman’s excitement as her hand squeezed my arm and I felt her breast pressed up against me. There was something in her eyes, a sparkle that told me this was arousing her, something that told me that they needed me to do this for them.
With the cane in hand I stepped towards Annette. Her eyes widened and I saw her look up at the ropes looped through the thick leather cuffs around her wrists as she began to struggle.
She was trying to reach the knots that were just out of reach. Emilie had done a good job at tying her. I walked around her, and saw Emilie settle in on the bed to watch. That made me a little nervous and I almost asked her to leave, but decided she probably had a fantasy to live out here as well. These two women were something else all right. Holy crap!
I thought of every bondage magazine I’d ever seen, all three of them, and thought about what the hell I was going to do. I knew suspense was a big part of it, so I stood behind the bound woman and remained silent for a long time. My ploy worked as the woman stopped her useless struggles with the knots and tried to twist her body around to see where I was. Failing to see me, she began to really pull against her bondage, pulling hard at her ankles and then looking up to use her fingers to get at the knots again.
The sounds coming from her gagged mouth seemed to gain in volume. Oh man, was she living this fantasy out or what? She was playing this to the hilt, looking over towards Emilie to see if her reactions were pleasing her friend. Not surprisingly, Emilie already had her hand down the front of her shorts. Oh shit! I adjusted my erection as thoughts of flogging Lucy filtered through my mind. I remembered being terrified at the time, but later…in my room, well, those same memories elicited a different emotion. Seeing Lucy later, with the welts I was responsible for administering, unexpectantly seemed to arouse me, too.
Okay, I had to do it sooner or later. The cane sounded pretty damn scary as it swooshed through the air. It appeared that Annette thought so too, as she tried to move away from me. That was pretty silly, because, obviously she was held firmly in place. I had never held a cane, but had seen its use up close and personal as Paulette used it for the first time on Lucy.
I could do this!
The sound it made when it struck Annie’s ass seemed to be correct. It wasn’t that dull thud, but a sharp snap. SNAP! Oh yeah, that sounded right, and each strike caused Annette to cry out in pain. I was doing it! Each stroke left a thin red line where it landed. The cane swished through the air over and over, not always landing correctly, but those that did caused sharp squeals to be heard through Annette’s gag.
Stopping for a moment to allow the woman to calm down a little, I walked around to her front to remove the little clamps that held the weights. She cried out as I removed them and for a moment I thought she was trying to tell me to leave them on, but I was planning on using the cane on her breasts next, and didn’t want them to get in the way.
Her breasts were so firm and luscious, and with her bound as she was, I really saw no reason why I shouldn’t squeeze them a little bit, massage them with my hands, maybe tug on her nipples while I was at it. Man, her breasts were nice!
I stepped back and began to tap the tops on those gorgeous breasts, and Annie shook her head, no, as she closed her eyes. The tears streaming down her cheeks brought streaks of dark eyeliner down with them, leaving dark lines where they ran. I began to use the cane on the front of her legs, moving closer and closer to the dark patch of trimmed hair between her legs. This really made her dance in an attempt to avoid the punishment I was dishing out.
“Oh fuck!” Emilie moaned from the bed as her fingers groped her pussy. Her shorts were unbuttoned and unzipped now, to accommodate both her hands attending to her needs. Her body thrashed to the side and she squeezed her legs together, trapping her fingers inside of her, as the orgasm overtook her. I had to stop and watch; Annette’s cries suddenly dying down as she, too, understood what was happening to her friend.
The cane fell to the floor as I stepped behind Annette, bringing my hands up the sides of her sweaty body to her breasts. Caressing them gently, I felt the lines rising where the cane had struck them. My right hand drifted down her tightly stretched torso to her pussy. I tugged at the thin strip of hair and felt her grind her ass into my crotch.
“You like that, huh?” I whispered in her ear as my fingers explored inward towards her sex. The light covering of hair was wet, but that might have been from the sweat that dripped down from her belly. No, when my fingers touched the flesh of her pussy, they felt the wetness that was there.
My fingers slipped easily inside the folds of her hot flesh, spreading her labia wide and exploring the moist flesh within. Cupping her pussy now, I rubbed her mound, massaging her roughly, dipping my fingers into her and rubbing her juices on her flesh as they withdrew.
Annie’s breathing changed and heat seemed to radiate from her as she worked her hips in a dance timed to correspond with the movements of my fingers. A cry from the bed startled us both, as it appeared that Emilie had brought herself off again, and whether from my attentions or the sight of her friend, Annette cried out through the gag as she joined her in orgasm.
I continued to gently stroke her, while holding her close with my other hand to take the pressure off of her arms. I felt arms coming around me from behind as Emilie hugged me.
“Thank you,” she cooed, as the side of her head pressed up against my back. “I can take it from here.” I felt kisses on my back and then she withdrew. “You should go see if Lucy is finished with Jerome. I don’t want her to be alone too long.
I turned to say okay, but Emilie reached up and gave me a peck on the cheek before pushing me towards the door. I looked back to see her blow me a kiss as I closed the door behind me.
I think I had just figured out who the dominant one was in their relationship.
It was close to noon when I finally stirred from my slumbers. The soft glow from one burning candle revealed that I was the room’s sole occupant. I felt the bed next to me where Lucy had slept to feel her warmth, but found none.
What a night! Fuck that, what a week! The past few days had been utterly mind blowing. I couldn’t imagine living like these people did, but to them it was natural. Most of them had grown up in this environment, and probably thought nothing of it. What Henri had said the other night about living with Lucy had been rolling around in my mind quite a bit.
If you lived in a town that had a real, honest to God, werewolf living in it, what would you do? This werewolf didn’t just happen by and start eating your family members. If that were the case you’d call the cops, or the State Police, or someone, and track the fucker down and kill it. There’d be, like, a massive wolf hunt or something.
But what if you grew up with the werewolf? Your parents knew the beast, your grand- parents knew the beasts’ parents. You knew the story, the legend, the history of the wolf and you loved the changeling like you loved your own sister. What would you do?
You’d do what the people of Melonya did every day.
They had something in this town that was supernatural, and they protected it, maybe, with their lives. I wished I could verify that Jeremy had really made it out alive. For all I knew he was buried out there in the swamp someplace, or what was left him was. For all I knew he was laid to rest at the bottom of that garden box I helped Lucy fill with soil.
From somewhere outside the room there came the sound of something breaking, and voices. It sounded like an argument, and I eased out of bed to find my clothes in the closet.
Dressed, I stood outside the room and looked down over the railing into the main foyer of the mansion. The voices came from downstairs, probably back in the kitchen. I descended the stairs slowly to hear them better, while trying not to let them hear me.
“You can’t keep him now, Roni!” It was Lucy, her voice filled with anger.
“Just ‘cause you’re a-sleepin’ with him don’t mean nothin’, Lusineh.” I heard Irena say. “You’ve got to eat. It’s been a-three months now.”
“Shut up!” Lucy barked.
“The committee has decided,” Veronica shouted back. “Three weeks ago, it’s already been decided.”
“That last boy nearly killed you, you’re still weak from that,” Irena cut in. “You need something substantial, and soon.”
“We can find someone else… let me run, I can find someone!” Lucy’s voice had lost its anger and seemed filled with desperation now.
“No!” Veronica shouted.
“Quiet girl,” Irena hissed.
“You know how dangerous that would be, Lucy,” Veronica continued. “Where would you find someone else? Alba? West Lake? What do think the reaction would be to one of their folk being dragged off into the swamp? You remember what we went through last year when you ran?”
There was silence in the house. She ran last year? I could only assume she had killed someone in a neighboring town and all hell had broken loose.
“I can’t take him…”
“When it’s time you won’t know the difference.”
“But I’ll know afterwards, and my heart will turn to stone. I’m telling you this, Veronica, my heart will be solid stone and you’ll not know me, nor console me, because I’ll have a dead heart.”
“Please don’t say that,” Veronica implored.
“Stay firm, girl,” Irena scolded, “Lusineh will not feel this way once she’s eaten. It’s always this way, you need to remember… remember Clive. She said she was dead to us then, but it passed.”
The next step I took caused a tiny creak, and I froze in place.
“Quiet!” Lucy said instantly, “He’s coming down.”
Shit, I had barely heard it myself, but since I was busted I descended the remaining stairs and walked across the large marble floored foyer and back into the kitchen.
Lucy was standing against a long wooden table, her arms crossed under her breasts, while Irena stood near the crackling fire in the hearth, and Veronica swept up the broken remains of what looked like a coffee cup.
“Good morning, Count Stephan,” Irena said as I entered the kitchen, her lips were raised in a forced smile. “How did you sleep?”
I looked at Lucy and noticed she was looking down, unable to make eye contact with me. There was something different about her, a slouch, a tiredness. Well, that wouldn’t be at all surprising given what she had been through the previous night!
“Really well,” I responded, moving close to Lucy and putting my arm around her. “I didn’t hear you get up, it’s amazing you can even move.”
“Lusineh has an inner strength that might surprise you,” Irena said as she used a hot pad to remove a coffee pot from the hearth.
“No, I wouldn’t be surprised by that at all. Thanks,” I said as I accepted a cup of coffee.
We chatted while breakfast was made, but I noticed how withdrawn Lucy had become. I could totally understand how exhausted she must have been, but there was more to it than that. The discussion I had overheard was the obvious reason for the chilly atmosphere in the kitchen.
Later, we lay in bed holding one another as if it were our last day together, because for all we knew it was. We cuddled, just as we had several hours previously when I had arrived at the Countess’ chamber just as Jerome was leaving. He had laid his hand on my shoulder and simply said, “Thanks, man.”
Thanks? I hadn’t understood what he meant at the time, but after stripping off my clothes and slipping into the bed, I found Lucy to be crying quietly under the covers.
“What’s wrong, Lucy?” I had asked, careful not to touch her in a sexual way until I determined the reason for her tears.
“They’re all so wonderful, Darios,” and her sobs became heavier. “I don’t deserve their kindness; I don’t deserve them at all.”
“Shhh,” I had whispered to her as I moved closer, snuggling up behind her, my arm around her, holding her hand on the other side of her body. “They think you do, sweetie. They think you do.”
We lay quietly for several minutes before I heard Lucy’s breathing change as she fell off to sleep.
Now, she looked over at me. “You need to get you out of Melonya, Darios,” she whispered. “You need to leave soon.”
“I don’t want to leave you yet, Lucy. I still have some time, don’t I?”
She looked up at me, her brown eyes searching mine, examining me, probing. “Time?”
“Yes,” I kissed her forehead, “Time before the full moon, time before you change.”
She hugged me closely, her head on my chest. I could feel the wetness of her tears as they dripped off her cheeks. “You know?” she whispered.
“I guess I’ve figured it out, Lucy. You can’t be in this town for a month and not catch on. It’s just a matter of believing, and after everything I’ve seen and heard I find it hard not to believe.” Even though no one had ever come out and said, point blank, that Lucy was a werewolf, the inferences were there. My suspicions as to the reasons I had been told the legend had been confirmed, as well. I was not meant to ever leave this town alive.
“They’ll try to keep you here. If you act suspiciously, Henri will find a reason to lock you up. We have to figure out a way to get you out, but it won’t be easy. For now, though, let’s try to enjoy what’s left of our time together.”
Lucy swung her leg across me and then slid her body over mine until she lay on top of me. Reaching over to the basin on the side table, she handed me a condom.
“Can’t risk it, do you mind?”
“Not at all.”
After making love that morning¸ Lucy’s spirits improved. The smile on her face brightened my entire world. The days that followed were the happiest time of my life, as it seemed every moment we spent together was a gift we gave each other. Henri’s words were spot on, being allowed to live and survive near Lucy made me value life every day. We relaxed at the mansion for two more days before heading back into town and resuming our normal routine.
Our daily schedule for the next two weeks returned to what it had been during the days preceding Lucy’s day, with one obvious deviation. Veronica, Jerome, and, or, Henri monitored our every move. They tried to make it seem that they were just sort of hanging around, but their motives were obvious to me now. Lucy told me they were three of the five committee members that governed her existence, Jack and Annette being the other two. Veronica, having taken over the Guardianship from Irena, and Henri were the only permanent members, while the others rotated yearly with other town folks.
The work seemed harder, spending nearly a week loading dirt into the back of Jerome’s pick-up and then filling in pot-holes on the dozen’s of little roads leading from the center of town out into the swamp. The network of roads seemed to go nowhere, interconnecting in a weird matrix that seemed like a web woven by a drunken spider. If not for Lucy, and whoever was chaperoning us at the time, I would’ve never found my way back to the town.
Still, Lucy and I had plenty of time to think and talk. Plans were made and discarded. Heading out into the swamp on my own was not an option. I would certainly get lost, and if I got turned around and headed east I would definitely encounter alligator infested waters. Even finding the nearest town was a stretch, and Lucy’s objections to attempting it made it clear that the option was off the table.
As the full moon approached, Lucy began to be confined each night in the jailhouse again. I remained at the Rousseau’s until I made a huge blunder. I had stepped out one night to see if there was a breeze near the front of the house, and upon seeing Henri’s car, remembered I had left a pair of mucky shoes in the back seat from earlier in the day. When I opened the door the familiar screech of rusted hinges filled the still night air.
“And what might you be a-doin´ out here, son?”
I jumped. “Oh, shit man, you scared me!” I bent into the back and retrieved the shoes. “Um, just getting my shoes so I could clean them off.”
“Uh-huh, I see.” The cop leaned in and removed the keys from the ignition and pocketed them. I hadn’t thought of it, but Henri always left his keys in the ignition! Shit, I could’ve been miles away already! I kicked myself mentally. What a fucking dumb-ass!
The following day I told Lucy about my fuck-up and she mentioned that my car was parked down a road that came out of the swamp behind the jail. If I could get to my keys, maybe I could get away with my own car.
Two days later, as we were all in the jailhouse using the restroom, an opportunity arose for me to search Henri’s desk. The keys were in the bottom right drawer, along with some crumpled up forms. A quick glance at the paperwork revealed an application for a replacement license with my name on the top but nothing else filled in. Henri never sent away for my new license like he said he had. He probably never contacted anyone on my behalf. My thoughts jumped instantly to Jeremy and hoped the cop hadn’t been lying about him, too.
Angry, I looked in his middle desk drawer for a pen, but only found a box of crayons. Okay, that was weird, but there were no pens or pencils, so I opened the box to find one reddish pink crayon. I prefer blue, but reddish pink would do in a pinch.
Flipping the application over I wrote:
I love Lucy enough to be her next meal, but too much to let her live with it. Sorry if this screws up your plans, but I’m out of here.
I crumpled the paper and threw it back in the drawer, spotted my expired license amongst some other junk, and pocketed it.
As Lucy and I had discussed, I quickly removed the ignition key from the key ring, leaving all of the other keys where they were. If Henri were to look in the drawer it would appear that all of the keys were still there.
I was so nervous the rest of the day I thought I would puke. Initially I thought it was because I had taken the items, and feared being caught with them. But as the day went on I realized it was because, with the key in my pocket, those may have been the last hours I was to spend with Lucy.
Throughout the day, Lucy began to become more agitated as well. Was she feeling the same nervousness I was? She began to talk back to Henri, even pushing him out of her way once.
That did it. With a wave of his hand, Veronica was at his side and the two of them guided the naked woman towards the Commons. Henri had my arm clenched in his other hand, and pulled me along with them. Lucy struggled against them as we came closer to the pillories.
It was very hard for me to see Lucy trapped in the pillories once again; even harder to sit there in the ankle stocks while Veronica removed the flogger from the hook. The realization finally struck me that the change in Lucy’s demeanor was not wholly due to my imminent departure, but because of the full moon slowly rising in the evening sky.
“Solid fucking stone, Veronica,” Lucy growled, as she kicked at Henri while he tried to get her feet into the ankle stocks of the vertical pillory.
The flogger came down hard against Lucy’s thigh. “Submit, Lucy. Let Henri take care of your feet.”
Lucy lifted her leg quickly and planted it firmly against Henri’s upper chest and pushed him over. His head hit the ground hard and I heard him grunt from the pain.
“Damn you, woman, I’ll fucking…”
Lucy’s scream cut him off as Veronica’s hand brought the flogger down hard across her bare back.
I couldn’t watch this. “Lusineh!” I shouted out with authority, desperate to stop this escalation in violence. “Submit! Do as your Mistress says, now!”
As the saying goes, the silence was deafening. I don’t recall even hearing the family of Acadian Warblers that nested in the nearby Ash tree; their explosive “peet-sah” calls heard so often was like muzak in the Commons.
Lucy stood still, her feet positioned on the blocks that allowed the wooden beams to be closed properly around her ankles. My lover’s head hung down from the hole through which it was secured, her chin resting on the old wood of the cross beam, her beautiful brown curls cascading towards the ground below her.
Veronica’s hand remained motionless at its highest point as she was preparing to deliver the next punishing lash, while Henri sat on the ground, his arms behind him for support. All eyes were on Lucy as she stood motionless, silent.
Finally, Roni’s arm came down slowly as she pointed towards the ankle stocks with the flogger. Henri quietly crawled forward and secured the beams and pocketed the key.
Veronica approached Lucy and put her arms around her.
“Leave me be, Miklos,” Lucy said without lifting her head. “Just leave me be.”
The young woman kissed Lucy’s shoulder and then nodded towards Henri. The two of them walked off towards the road that led to Jerome’s cottage. I leaned back on my elbows so I could see past the Swamp Ash and saw Annette waiting for them on the street in front of Jack’s leather store. The three of them talked for a moment and then continued on into the woods.
“This is not good, Master.”
She was right. I was going nowhere now that I was locked in the damned stocks! I remember her telling me, on that first day we suffered out there together, that she could easily break the stocks if she weren’t settled.
“Lucy, you said that you broke out of these once, maybe you could do it again.”
“No, Master, if I got myself worked up enough to do that, you would not survive.”
“Are you sure?”
“Darios, I wouldn’t know what I was doing at that point and would have no control over myself, my hunger is too great now. Please don’t ask to see the beast.” The desperation in her voice was heavy. “I never want you to see the beast, because… it may very well be the last thing you see.”
We remained silent for a moment. I looked around at the houses visible from the Commons and noticed something I hadn’t seen before. All of the windows and doors were heavily shuttered!
“Lucy!” I whispered. “The houses, all of the windows, they’re…”
“They’re closed to me on this night, dearest.” She looked up at the moon and groaned. “Oh God, Darios, they’re leaving us out here together. No one will open their doors or windows for any reason until morning.” A low wail came from her throat as her breathing deepened.
“No! Oh God, no! Don’t punish me any more like this! What have I done to be so cursed?”
I jumped as that wail burst out of her lungs as a scream.
It was happening! With the moon glowing brightly overhead, I could see Lucy clearly. Her once soft and shapely figure was slowly transforming into the muscled form I had seen while she was hard at work. It would, no doubt, go beyond what I had previously seen, though, to become something I could not ever imagine.
“Whatever happens, Lucy, don’t blame yourself,” I shouted, almost resigned now to my fate.
“I love you, Darios!” she shouted back
“I love you, too, Lusineh!”
A loud crack filled the night air, and I knew my life was over.
End of part 4
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