cane

The first lash of the cane upon Gary’s bare ass was astonishingly painful, as was the second and the third, which followed fast upon it. The slender young man gasped, gritting his teeth, as tears sprang to his tightly closed eyes. His cock and balls lay between his well-turned thighs, the glans, or head, of his dick pointing down, toward the polished hardwood floor.



Behind him, Gary’s boyfriend, Kevin–they had been together for three years now, to this very day, having become a couple when Gary was eighteen and Kevin was nineteen–studied the angry pink lines that the rattan cane had created across the sleek expanses of his target’s arched mounds. Kevin’s cock twitched and stirred, as it always did when he contemplated the effects of his handiwork. His boyfriend had a lovely bottom. Gary’s ass cheeks were round and firm, the furrow between them deep, and the flesh covering them both smooth and pale–except, of course, where the blood had risen, to form the three parallel stripes across his buttocks and where it would rise again–and again–to form others of a brighter and deeper hue. Gary’s cock, like Kevin’s own, had swelled. It had stiffened, and, although it was sandwiched between Gary’s upper legs, pointing downward, it was half-erect.



Naked, Gary was draped over a special sawhorse-like frame, over a folded child’s-size mattress. His arms and legs were secured to the legs of the frame, in Velcro-fastened cuffs, to restrict his movements and prohibit any attempt on his part to escape. The uncomfortable position, the fetters, and his nudity increased both Gary’s sense of vulnerability and his humiliation, demonstrating, as it were, his utter helplessness and loss of dignity. He knew, when he assumed this awkward and uncomfortable position, that he was utterly at Kevin’s mercy, just as he knew that Kevin was utterly unmerciful and that Kevin would spank–or beat–him mercilessly. Gary found the display of his genitals embarrassing, too, for there was no hiding them, tugged down, between his thighs, as they were, thanks to Kevin’s sadistic attention to such details.



Kevin raised his arm high overhead, the cane, cutting through the air, making a frightful whooshing sound, and aimed the instrument at his boyfriend’s beautiful buttocks, intending to cut another narrow stripe between the last two lines he’d laid with the brutal cane. The cane streaked forward, and, landing exactly on target, caused a deep, wide furrow in Gary’s tight bottom. Although restrained by the bench over which he was draped and to which he was cuffed, Gary managed to jostle his bottom, and his agonized cheeks shook most piteously and agreeably, signaling, as did his startled and anguished cry, his distress. A second and a third stroke of the cane landed, as viciously as the first lash of this second series, and Gary’s head rose sharply as he screamed, loudly and long, venting the anguish that consumed his red-and-purple backside. Although the firm rotundity of his buttocks protected his penis and testicles, Gary could not help but to fear, nevertheless, that the cane would injure his genitals, perhaps to the point of castration.



Kevin had a gag among his disciplinarian’s instruments, but he seldom employed it, for his young boyfriend’s anguished cries were as music to his ears, offering, as they did, additional evidence, along with Gary’s bruised and battered bottom, of Gary’s pain and helplessness and of Kevin’s own power over, and dominance of, the passive and submissive twink. For the same reason–to take pleasure in his victim’s pain–Kevin had installed a large mirror before the spanking bench, so that he might see, reflected in the polished glass, Gary’s frantic eyes, his contorted grimaces, and his distorted facial features, twisted with the agony that Kevin inflicted upon him in an ecstasy of dominance, power, and control that clearly and decisively demonstrated both his own superiority and mastery of the other man and Gary’s inferiority and insignificance. The erection of Gary’s cock and the ascension of his balls inside the contracted pouch of his scrotum also signaled his willingness to surrender his will in favor of Kevin’s assertion of his own.



Although the severe angle at which Gary was bent over the frame restricted his ability to react to the thrashings of his buttocks, instinct, combined with involuntary muscle contractions, ensured that he made the effort to do so, for it was virtually the only way that he could attempt, however vainly, to evade the fiery lashes that ignited his bottom and enflamed his loins. Therefore, from his vantage point, standing behind him, Kevin was able to see and enjoy the knitting of his victim’s brow, the furrowing of Gary’s forehead, the squeezing shut of his eyes, the gaping of his mouth, and the look of desperation mingled with pain that each of the powerful strokes caused as the whistling cane cut deeply into Gary’s bruised and tattered bottom.



Tears spilled from Gary’s eyes, coursing down his cheeks, and the sight of them in the mirror further enflamed Kevin’s lust for the twink’s blood. Kevin’s cock was fully erect now, straining against the front of his trousers, making of the fine fabric a tented “V” that, for Kevin, was another illustration of his own power and dominance, for was not a thick, hard cock, raised and ready, meant for penetration, occupation, and possession–unless, of course, the organ belonged to a sissy like Gary rather than to a true man like Kevin?



To give a sound spanking, Kevin believed, one had himself to have received such a thrashing, and to humiliate another person properly, one must himself have been properly mortified. To this end, before he had begun to spank and shame Gary, he had, without his boyfriend’s knowledge, submitted himself to the dominance and mastery of a brutal, powerful man, a German sadist named Heinrich, who had not only caned Kevin’s ass until it was a raw, bloody mess, but had also required his victim both to suck his master’s prick and to take his Aryan cock up his ass. Heinrich had fucked Kevin fast, deep, and hard, and, ever since, Kevin had returned the favor, along with the canings and humiliation he had received at the German’s hands (and cock), to his faithful, loving, and ever-more-obedient boyfriend.



Kevin often thought of Heinrich and what the sadistic bastard had done to him–what he had put him through, for no other reason than the German’s own pleasure in Kevin’s pain–when Kevin administered his own canings of Gary’s helpless ass. Gary would never know the source of Kevin’s rage, or suspect that it had a homophobic origin, but Gary would endure the effects of Kevin’s rage all the rest of his days, for, three years ago, the twink had become his victim, as Kevin himself had once been Heinrich’s injured party.



Kevin swooshed the cane, raising and lashing it back and forth several times in front of him, to let Gary hear the instrument’s cruel sound as it cut the air, just as, in a moment, it would cut its victim’s flesh. Gary had hung his head, in fear and disgrace, but the impact of the cane would cause him to jerk his head erect–or as erect as he might, restrained as he was–and allow Kevin another sight of Gary’s distorted and distressed features as he cried out, his bottom afire and his soul in torment. Each time Kevin raised the cane, each time it smote Gary’s buttocks, and each time the twink screamed, Kevin would remember Heinrich doing the same to him, or Heinrich ordering him to suck his cock, or Heinrich commanding him to take his massive member up his impaled ass.



In rapid succession, his hand and the cane it held a blur, Kevin delivered the third series of strokes to his compliant boyfriend’s buttocks, watching with great satisfaction as Gary’s quivering, jerking bottom received the strokes that drew red lines across its smooth, but bruised and battered, surface. The twink’s cock rock hard, but still pointed downward, between his thighs, Gary howled, his whole body tensing with the agony he felt in his enflamed ass, the cheeks of which continued to tremble and clench even after the last of the strokes had cut his bottom, forming, almost in an instant, another wicked red welt among the other long ridges. Gary cried, screamed, and whimpered. His face was smeared with tears and mucus. His cheeks were apple-red. He looked a mess, just the way Kevin liked to see him.



Gary had not yet begun to beg, though, which meant that he had not, even naked and bent over a spanking bench, with his ass blossoming like a ripe, beautiful flower, lost all dignity and composure. Kevin smiled, knowing that he would, and soon. Kevin almost regretted stripping away the last shreds of Gary’s self-respect, because, then, the caning of his ass would be more physical than emotional; at the moment, it was both, which made the twink’s howls of anguish doubly joyful.



Still, reducing Gary beyond tears, to begging, was always Kevin’s ultimate goal, for, when the spanking reached that point–and only when it had reached that point, and Gary was begging and pleading for Kevin’s mercy–would Kevin have attained his objective. Of course, Gary’s pleas did not mean that Kevin would respond the way Gary hoped and put an end to his suffering, not at all. The caning would continue until the predetermined number of strokes had been delivered, no matter Gary’s state of mind or the condition of his ass.



The cane flashed, landing a resounding whack across both cheeks of Gary’s highly decorated ass, and he shrieked, his face a mask of unadulterated anguish. The twink staggered and would have doubtlessly toppled had it not been for the cuffs that restrained him. His buttocks flexed, then trembled, and he gasped as the full measure of the cane’s most recent lash blossomed in his badly bruised (and now -lacerated) cheeks. Grinning, Kevin smote his victim’s derriere again, even harder, the impact of the cane furrowing Gary’s battered bottom, and, as before, the twink screamed, the sound of his agony sweet in his boyfriend’s ears. A clear drop of Cowper’s fluid, or pre-cum, adorned the tip of Gary’s purple glans, a diamond, as it were, formed of the agony he had received at his tormentor’s cruel hands.



Without pause, Kevin raised the cruel instrument and swung it downward, in an arc, fiercely, against Gary’s enflamed fanny, and the tormented twink howled again, as Kevin completed he fourth set of three strokes. Normally, he paused between each trio of blows, but, this time, having delivered twelve strokes of the cane, he continued, slashing the cane down, fast and hard, into Gary’s ravaged bottom, delighting in the twink’s screams, squeals, and shrieks, as the red lines seeped blood and red welts rose, in lines, across Gary’s buttocks. Kevin paused only after he had added the fifth set of three strokes, bringing the running total to fifteen strikes.



Blood continued to ooze from the angry red welts that the cane had etched in the sleek flesh of Gary’s round, arched bottom, careening over the silken globes and down the backs of his firm thighs and calves. Gary had been reduced to tears at the completion of Kevin’s previous strokes, and he whimpered openly now, through the film of saliva, mucus, and tears that made his face a glistening, horrid mess. At last, his dignity as tattered as his tush, Gary begged his boyfriend to cease and desist in the punishing of his bottom. “Please, stop,” he murmured. “I can’t take any more.”



“I have no doubt but that you would like me to stop,” Kevin replied sternly, “but I have not yet reached the predetermined number of strokes, and I would be amiss in my husbandly responsibilities if I were to spare you the rod prematurely.” He ran the cane over the curve of Gary’s bottom in a loving and caressing manner that, he knew, Gary would find intimidating in the extreme, promising, as the gesture did, further punishment to follow.



“Please,” Gary repeated, his tone soft but desperate, “don’t strike me again.”



The cane, hard but smooth, continued to sweep up and down, over the rotundity of the twink’s buttocks, lightly tickling Gary’s flesh. Involuntarily, he flinched, in fear of the cruel instrument. His prick, still thick and hard, bobbled between his legs, his balls jiggling and bouncing.



Visually, Kevin examined his victim’s bruised bottom. The injured party’s ass cheeks were purple where they were not red, and fifteen red stripes, some oozing blood, like liquid rubies, stretched, parallel to one another, across his battered buttocks. Kevin found the sight of his victim’s bloody, bruised, and lacerated behind as beautiful as a blossom in full flower and, despite Gary’s buttocks’ bruises and lacerations, Kevin knew that Gary’s bottom could, in fact, endure many more lashes of the cane, should he wish to subject him to additional blows, although not, perhaps, without doing somewhat serious injury to the muscles and maybe scarifying the flesh permanently. Still, Kevin decided, he’d be able to complete the predetermined number of strokes without doing lasting injury to Gary’s buttocks. Other men had endured far worse punishment than Gary would receive this day–as, indeed, had Kevin himself, at Heinrich’s hands–and Gary would not, therefore, be afforded any consideration or mercy.



Kevin rubbed the cane gently over Gary’s ass, letting its length sweep tenderly up and down, over the battered flesh. Then, with a flash, the cane rose and fell, striking hard across the twink’s backside, and Gary screamed, gasping and crying as pain exploded in his buttocks. His ass flexed and quivered as, again and again, he shrieked and howled. When he was able to speak, he pleaded again for mercy, despite his knowledge that no mercy would be give to him. Tears spilled in a steady stream from his eyes. Mucus ran from his nose. Saliva drooled from his mouth. Blood spilled down his buttocks and thighs. More pre-cum oozed from his erect cock. His penis glistened with his manly fluids. “Please, Kevin, please don’t hit me again. Please–”



The answer to his heartfelt plea interrupted his entreaty, the vicious, brutal blow of the rattan taking his breath away, as it stole his words, and he gave vent to the horrific anguish that filled his backside with a truly pathetic, reverberating series of screams.



Kevin’s already stiff cock became more rigid still, and he longed to make use of his fleshly instrument. First, however, he must complete the employment of the rattan cane, and he raised it again, high, striking with all the force he could muster. The implement smote the twink’s bottom with tremendous force, deeply furrowing the muscles of Gary’s posterior. The tormented party screamed, writhing in place, his buttocks afire with anguish.



“Please,” Gary pleaded, his voice weak and his tone more hopeless than hopeful, “please, please don’t–”



Again, the cutting stroke of the cane interrupted his plea, and he teetered, gasping and shrieking and moaning and whimpering.



Kevin had delivered eighteen strokes, but he was not through yet with the task he’d set himself. He tapped lightly at Gary’s bottom, as if to determine his aim. Twice, he tapped, and then tapped again, a third time. He repeated the tap-tap-tapping of the cane against the twink’s bottom, so that Gary was not sure after which of these taps the strike would come and, anticipating the blow after each of the pats, became increasingly anxious that the strike must surely follow the next rap. When the slashing strike did fall, it nevertheless took him by surprise, filling him with as much astonishment and pain as the first blow had that her boyfriend had delivered to his bottom.



An image arose in Kevin’s mind–an image of himself, but younger, and naked, bent over at the waist and clutching his ankles, the gigantic German, Heinrich, behind him, a stout and supple cane in hand. Before him, he saw his boyfriend’s derriere, beaten, bruised, and bloody, but, in his fantasy, Gary’s ass was Kevin’s his own, the victim of Heinrich’s homophobic self-loathing, directed at Kevin, rather than at the German bully himself.



The mental picture changed, and Kevin saw Heinrich standing before him, his massive member erect and pointed into his victim’s face. “Suck my cock, bitch!” the German commanded, and Kevin parted his lips, sliding them down, around the thick, hard prick, taking the man’s manhood into the warm-soft-wetness of his mouth. “Suck it, faggot!” he heard his tormentor cry. Before him, Gary’s beautiful, bare, but bloody and battered, bottom awaited Kevin’s pleasure. Kevin raised the cane, and it shot down, with tremendous force. Gary yelped, lunging against the mattress folded over the spanking bench. His bleeding buttocks quivered. Kevin heard his victim whimper and groan.



In his mind, Kevin was positioned upon his elbows and knees, his buttocks high in the air. Heinrich knelt behind him. Something smooth but rigid poked between Kevin’s buttocks, and he felt the German’s prick penetrate him, parting his anus as the massive organ slid past his sphincter, deep into his rectum. Kevin smote Gary’s ass with all his force and strength, and the rattan cane, loud as a gunshot, furrowed the flesh and muscle of the twink’s derriere, another red line appearing in the round, arched cheeks of Gary’s ass as he cried out, fiercely and passionately, his cock spewing thick, white streamers of semen onto his thighs, along his calves, and onto the floor.



Kevin trembled, but with as much ecstasy, this time, as agony, and, at last, the predetermined number of strokes having been duly administered, he tossed the rattan implement aside. Gary’s screams were his own, as the German, ejaculating, spewed his semen over Kevin’s buttocks, back, and thighs. Gary’s moans were Kevin’s own, Gary’s whimpering Kevin’s own whining, Gary’s pain Kevin’s own anguish.



The German’s hated face dissolved, and only Gary was with Kevin, the twink draped over the spanking bench, his battered and beleaguered ass a beautiful blossoming of blood and bruises. Kevin gave him bottom a hard pinch, “an inch to grow on,” as the saying went, and Gary cried out.



“Happy birthday,” he told him.

‘Jason, Amanda would like to see you now.’



Jason’s stomach knotted up and he swallowed dryly. He had expected the summons, but the shock still scared him.



‘I’m sorry Jason.’



‘Its Ok Sue,’ Said Jason with feigned optimism, ‘I’m sure it will be fine.’ Jason knew it was not fine. Whatever Amanda wanted, it definitely would not be fine.



Jason had got the job on the trading floor of the bank on the strength of an excellent MBA. Unfortunately he was finding that the theoretical models that had worked in academia did not seem so effective in the real world. He knew that his results were far from satisfactory and he also knew that Amanda did not condone poor trading results. Amanda was the bank’s top player and she led the strongest team, consistently achieving the highest bonuses. Only the best were good enough for Amanda’s star team. Jason knew that Amanda was a total bitch. She was utterly ruthless in the pursuit of her goal. Jason was in fear of losing his job. Sue squeezed his hand as he left his desk to make his way to Amanda’s office.



‘Good luck, Jason.’



Sue, Amanda’s PA, was the only person on the team who had shown him any kindness. Everyone else was too busy chasing their own bonuses to take any interest in the new boy.



Jason knocked quietly on Amanda’s door and entered. Amanda did not look up from her monitor screen. After a few moments of silence Jason gave a discreet cough to announce his presence. Still no response.



After an age Amanda broke the silence. ‘Jason, your trading figures are shit. Give me one good reason why I shouldn’t fire you right now.’



‘I know I’ve not done very well, Amanda, but I know I can improve.’



Amanda thought for a moment. ‘What kind of car do you drive?’ she asked.



‘Toyota coupe,’ replied Jason. Amanda’s lips curled as though she had just discovered she had stepped into something unpleasant. She drove a Masserati Gran Tourismo, the £95,000 price tag of which had cost her a good part of a month’s salary. ‘Do you have any ambition, Jason?’



‘Oh yes, Amanda. I want to get to the top, like you.’



Amanda pondered for a moment and then tapped a few keys on her PC. ‘Ok Jason I have transferred some stock to your account. It will just be enough to get you out of trouble. Not enough to earn a bonus, but enough to keep your job.’



‘Gosh thanks Amanda, that’s really kind of you.’



‘Jason, I don’t do kind. I’m a bitch. Anyone here will tell you that. They all know I’m a bitch.’



‘I am sure everyone has the greatest respect for you Amanda.’



‘Don’t bullshit me, Jason. They hate my guts and more to the point they are all scared of me. I like it like that. Keeps them on their toes. So Jason, you owe me and you can start paying me back tonight. Be at this address at 9 pm and don’t be late. Come by taxi. I don’t want your crapppy car parked outside my apartment and you may not be fit to drive home.’



Jason pocketed the card bearing Amanda’s address and considered what her last remark might mean. Perhaps he might be a bit tipsy after enjoying some of Amanda’s wine collection or maybe exhausted after a night of hectic sex. Maybe a combination of both. Sadly Jason’s conjectures were far wide of the mark.



At the appointed hour Jason approached the concierge at Amanda’s exclusive apartment. After a brief telephone call to ensure that he was expected, the concierge directed Jason to the lift to the penthouse suite. Amanda admitted him into her sumptuous apartment and Jason immediately took in the luxurious fittings and furniture and the view over the capital. Amanda herself looked stunning in a figure hugging cat suit that showed off every curve of her gorgeous figure. Amanda looked at Jason coldly and without any preamble ordered him to remove all his clothing. Although surprised at her direct approach, Jason complied and began to remove his clothing as Amanda watched, aloof and apparently quite disinterested in him. When he got down to his Calvin Klein underpants, Jason paused and looked at Amanda, wondering if he should continue or wait for some signal from her. Amanda showed no sign that she was going to undress too.



‘Those too Jason, I want you naked.’ Jason eyed Amanda’s curves appreciatively as he peeled off his pants. As if reading his mind, Amanda said ‘you are not here to fuck me Jason. I don’t need it and I don’t want it. I am a bitch at work and a bitch in my private life. I am going to cause you pain.’ So saying, Amanda picked up a wicked looking cane that Jason had not noticed. ‘This is what floats my boat, Jason; I’m going to cane you. It is what I enjoy. Now you have a simple choice. If you do not want to play, get dressed again and first thing in the morning clear your desk and go. I will give you a reference that will get you a job as a counter clerk at a high street branch. Or you can oblige me and maybe, just maybe you might just make a career on the trading floor. Bear in mind while you think it over, I am serious about this. I will cane you as hard as I can. I never make any concessions for inexperience. Every stroke will be delivered as hard as I can. You may have heard the expression “six of the best,” well I have gone decimal. My minimum tariff is ten strokes. So that is what you will receive – ten very hard strokes of the cane on your bare arse. You could complain to the bank, but frankly it would get you nowhere. You must know that banks have no morals, only profits. I bring them profits. End of story.’



Jason swallowed hard. He looked at Amanda’s face and knew she was serious. This was not what he expected. ‘Turn round Jason,’ ordered Amanda. Jason, your bottom looks very sensitive to me. I can assure you it will be very tender and painful by the time I have delivered ten strokes, so consider you position carefully. This incentive session is a perfect metaphor for working at the bank. It can be very painful, but the rewards are great if you can make it.’



‘Jason gulped. He could not bear to give up his chosen career. ‘I’ll do it Amanda.’



‘Very well Jason, bend over and place your hands on the coffee table. Do not look round and do not move from that position.’



Jason assumed the position and waited. He was conscious that Amanda approached him and sensed her raise the cane. He shuddered as it hissed down, cutting though the air in a practise stroke. Then a second whoosh and then Jason’s world exploded in pain and coloured lights. He felt tears start to build up in his eyes and his buttocks trembled. The vicious pain was beyond belief. Through the mists of his agony, Jason heard the click of a cigarette lighter. He sensed that Amanda had paused for a cigarette.



‘Jason, I know it is very painful. Are you sure you can take another nine? Some people think, wrongly, that it gets easier after the first few strokes. Believe me, it doesn’t. I know. I’ve been where you are now. Once I had to decide whether to quit or break though the pain barrier. That is how I got to where I am now. So think hard. Do you go on or quit? There are no consolation prizes. You must accept all ten stokes to win your job back. Five will get you nowhere. If you reach nine, but cannot go to ten, then you would be better to quit now. Think carefully. You have until I finish this cigarette to decide.’ After a short interval Amanda queried, ‘Well, Jason.’



‘I’ll go on Amanda.’ Amanda had already taken up post behind him and without warning the second stroke descended and the shock seemed to electrify his nerve endings and exploded in a new agony. There was a pause of several seconds then a third and a fourth stroke. Jason was openly sobbing now. All concerns about embarrassment and shame had evaporated. He was blinded by pain. Then there was a longer pause, punctuated by a rustling sound. Jason could not place the source of the sound at first. Then he was almost certain it was caused by Amanda discarding her cat suit. He began to turn his head.



‘Don’t dare turn round, Jason. If you move one inch, I shall start again from “one.”‘ Jason shuddered and then remained motionless, obediently looking straight ahead through a mist of tears. Amanda drew close again to deliver the next five strokes. Jason sensed she was naked, but dare not turn his head to test his theory. As he considered the notion, the cane cut the air and struck his buttocks once more. The pain seemed even more intense and instinctively his hands moved to feel the damage that was being done.



‘Get your hands out of the way. If this cane hits them it could break your knuckles.’



Jason obeyed, blinking in his pain.



The caning continued without mercy. Amanda kept her word, executing every stroke as hard as she was able.



Finally with a hiss the tenth stroke fell. Jason fell to his knees, openly sobbing.



‘Well done, Jason, I wasn’t sure you would make it. You can get dressed now. Before you go – a word of warning. This episode is not to be discussed. Everyone in the team will know, but no one will mention it. Be on the floor in good time tomorrow. Think of this as a performance incentive. Now you may go.’



Jason struggled into his clothes and turned to face Amanda. She was dressed in a long, black silk gown, looking as ravishing as he had ever seen her. Even now, in his agony he desired her, but knew she was out of his reach.



The following morning Jason walked slowly to the office water cooler, glad to be standing for a short while, easing the severe pain in his arse.



‘How are you, Jason?’ Sue, Amanda’s PA had approached him.



‘Oh fine, Sue. Never better,’ said Jason, trying to put on a brave face.



‘It’s Ok, Jason. I know. I’ve been there too. I understand.’



‘What, you too, Sue, but you’re her PA.’



‘PA’s have targets too Jason.’ She squeezed his hand gently as she hurried back to Amanda’s office.

Kennice was floating on air. The night had been great and being with Cyrus on the beach had been icing on the cake. She shed her clothes and put on her nightgown, a very demure one that showed little skin or curves.



She checked the door to make sure it was still locked and then she slid into bed. She closed her eyes and slipped right into a dream.



****



She was on the hillside overlooking the monastery, but she felt no joy at the sight but rather a peculiar uneasiness that penetrated all the way to her very soul. The scene was idyllic yet she felt threatened. There was danger and death on the air and it was coming for the monastery.



{{It is the dark one you feel}} that male voice that had spoken to her so long ago explained.



“Dark one? What do you mean? We have to stop it then!” She didn’t like this conversation or the fact that she could never see the male who spoke to her. She knew he meant her no harm. Of that she was certain.



{{Just watch}} His tone was full of sadness.



Kennice returned to watching and then winging in from the north was a black dragon. At first she thought it was Brenna but then she noticed a slight difference in the shading. It was a different dragon and there was someone riding the dragon. As the pair flew closer, she gasped when she recognized Cyrus. What frightened her though was the look of intense hatred on his face.



“What are you so angry at, Cyrus?” she whispered and then gasped this time in horror when the dragon opened its mouth and began flaming the monastery. But it wasn’t just that sight that froze her and made her heart ache but it was the malicious laughter coming from Cyrus that caused her to go cold in shock and despair.



{{Remember, remember}} the male urged and then she felt herself being pulled back to consciousness.



****



The sunlight on her face woke her and for a moment, the nightmare was forgotten as she let the healing rays of the sun wash over her. It was just a dream and she had nothing to worry about. It was all just a dream. Kennice slid from the bed and stretched. She was going to bathe and then think on a course of action that would allow her and Cyrus to be together without having to hide.



She gathered up her clothes and went into the bathroom. Stepping inside she let out a hiss of surprise at the hotness of the water. Quickly she turned it down so that it was still hot but not scalding. She squirted the lavender and peach scented shampoo into her hand and lathered up her hair. The scent was soothing and she closed her eyes and smiled. The night on the beach had been one of the best moments in her life. Once again she silently thanked Cyrus for it. She began humming softly as she rinsed her hair.



The door to the bathroom slowly opened and Erykia walked in on silent feet. Her expression was granite. She waited until she heard the water turn off before reaching in, latching on to Kennice’s hair and jerking the startled young woman out of the shower and down to the floor.



Kennice shrieked in fear and fought but Erykia held tightly and dragged her out to the bedroom. She forced Kennice’s head down until her face was pressed into the thick plush carpet. She then placed her booted foot down on the small of Kennice’s back and pressed hard until Kennice’s muffled screams of pain were heard.



“I don’t know how many times I have to keep enforcing this lesson but I will continue to do it until you get it. STAY AWAY FROM THAT BOY! You are not meant for him. He is a lowlife who managed to partner with a dragon. I will beat you until it sinks in. You will not disgrace our order by associated with that boy.”



Kennice was struggling frantically. She was starting to black out from lack of oxygen and the pain in her lower back was excruciating. She was dimly aware of the bedroom door opening and Rhys’ voice.



Erykia looked up. “Did you bring them?”



“Yes, High Priestess,” Rhys said with an evil smirk as he held out to her a cane, a whip and a rubber paddle.



“Pick her up and bend her over that stool,” Erykia ordered as she took the items from him.



Rhys hauled Kennice to her feet and dragged her to the stool and pushed her over it. He took a moment to run his hands over her body even as he felt himself growing hard. Her body was lithe and begging to be explored. He slid his hand lower between her legs.



Kennice’s response was instant. She pressed her legs together tightly trapping his hand. “No,” she hissed.



“Come now, Kennice, why so shy? You’re so eager to let Cyrus’ filthy hands touch you there. Shouldn’t I, your betrothed be allowed the same? I really don’t need to ask but I am because it is the only nice thing to do,” he drawled.



“Cyrus doesn’t touch me there and neither will you!”



Rhys’ face turned a dull red and then his hand landed hard and stinging on her butt. She yelped and almost tumbled off the stool but he held her down with his other hand as he scooted to the side to give Erykia room. His handprint was very visible against her milk chocolate skin.



“You just don’t know when to keep your mouth shut,” Erykia smirked as she expertly pulled her arm back and hit Kennice hard with the rubber paddle.



Tears sprang into Kennice’s eyes but she bit her bottom lip. She would not cry! They would not subdue her in this.



Rhys chuckled when he saw the determined look on Kennice’s face. “Oh, looks like your going to have to play rough high priestess. Kennice seems set on not learning her lesson.”



“Yes, she does a high tolerance for pain. That’s just as well. A high priestess usually has to go above and beyond normal levels. Consider this another lesson you have to learn,” Erykia explained as she began paddling Kennice. After fifteen blows she switched to the cane. “Such control. She’s managed to not shed tears or make a sound. How about we change that?”



Erykia swished the cane expertly in the air and started raining blows across Kennice’s thighs, butt and lower back. She only stopped after 25 hits.



Kennice was breathing harshly and she felt the blackness of unconsciousness calling her. She so wanted to slip into that black void and find relief but Erykia was going to allow that.



“Don’t you dare faint! I’ll have Rhys dunk you in icy cold water and then we’ll begin again.” Erykia savagely pinched Kennice’s leg.



“Yes, high priestess,” Kennice ground out and then hissed when the sting of the whip connected with her back.



Rhys watched in amusement as Erykia beat Kennice. He was getting aroused at the sight of Kennice’s pain and at the smell of blood as the whip opened up lacerations on her back. He reached out and gently touched Erykia after the fifteen lash. “I find myself, invigorated,” he stated.



Erykia laughed. “Yes you do like blood and pain, don’t you Rhys?” she purred. “Come we will leave her. She will only be permitted water and no food. I’m also having her moved to a spot that Cyrus cannot find. I do not want her tarnished. The ceremony is in six days and nothing is going to ruin in.”



The pair left the room and the sound of the lock being bolted in place was loud in the now quiet room.



Kennice tumbled off the stool and hit the floor hard where she curled up into a ball and quietly cried herself to sleep.

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