degradation

Story Codes/Notes



medieval, slavery, degradation, humiliation, fear, passion,



Please do not reprint this work on any other website, or any medium, without explicit consent from the author (me!).



Info: The Story builds up slowly, those who have read my last submission know I prefer to show the inner workings of the protagonists. This is not a BDSM story, although some parts might touch the genre. (For all the kind feedbacks on my first submission — it really encourages writing more, thank you!)



Enjoy!



Additional info EDITED VERSION:



The original version of this story was submitted prematurely. I should have waited some time, to find mistakes and edit it properly. Readers have rightfully complained about its formal shortcomings. I took their advice and asked DawnJ to be my editor. She was kind enough to help. Thanks for your understanding.



Synopsis



An enslaved former noblewoman dances in front of her new Lord. Though relentlessly abused, and trained for the occasion to perform in front of her new Master, taught to never look higher than his neck, she is surprised by the Nordic Lords command “Mírame” in her native Spanish.



Transferred



The two sturdy women shuffled her along. She almost fell, but was quickly picked up by strong hands steadying her; again women’s voices were heard in the yard shouting orders authoritatively. It had become second nature to her to do what was commanded. The luxurious dark purplish-red cape which she had been given only insufficiently shielded her from the ice-cold corridors of the Nordic stronghold. Her feet had been enwrapped in leathery shoes to provide minimum protection from the frozen ground, but otherwise she was bare of any clothing. Her guardians didn’t give her time to observe the surroundings, as liberating as that might have been after month of confinement. It was the first time since her arrival that she had been brought outside her lone imprisonment in the underground caverns, although the enormous walls surrounding the keep, and the vastness of the place, only reinforced her feeling of smallness and insignificance.



When they reached the stairs leading to the nobles’ chambers, the small group of women was stopped by grim-looking guards. Although the hooded cape veiled her beautiful face from the glaring stares of the Norsemen, she kept her eyes to the ground, in order not to provoke any unnecessary attention. She was terrified by those men, terrified by what they had done to her entourage, her people. There was a brief exchange; the guards started to laugh and gave way to the women. Accustomed to not understanding in detail what was said, she knew that it was she who motivated their laughter, and she was reminded of the purpose of her transfer. Her heart again began to rush, a large lump forming in her throat; she had to fight the urge to vomit.



The small group finally slowed down their pace and started to ascend. Torches illuminated the otherwise dark set of steps, circling the tower. It was slowly getting warmer, which meant less suffering for the Mediterranean beauty, still unaccustomed to this hostile environment. She was stopped by her two guardians after they reached a larger hall, and ordered to remove the leathery protections which until then shielded her feet from the cold surface. While handing them to her captors, she suddenly saw her palanquin parked, looking abandoned in the vastness of the hall. Her eyes became clouded, filled with sorrow and pain for her lost rank, and for the memories of former blissful times. Then she was blindfolded, her tears now hidden.



Flanked by both women, she was pushed forward. The cold stone floor served as a reminder of her inhospitable surroundings. Then, unexpectedly, there it was — a sudden whiff of familiarity, a scent almost forgotten, reminiscent of home.



“It must be the palanquin,” she mused, deliberately taking in a deep breath. “Yes!”



The cold air of the hall was indeed mixed with a slight fragrance of foreign origin. She started to tremble, her awareness abruptly intensified, desperately trying to hold on to what was once her own. With the usual rudeness she had come to expect from her tormenters, she was shoved into the carriage. Nothing had been changed in the palanquin; the comfortable cushions were still arranged the same way she preferred and, more importantly, smelled like her, a scent she had forgotten, one deeply buried in her memory, now instantaneously reactivated. The unexpected reminder of something she had once possessed filled her with pride, gave her much needed strength and induced the will to endure what undoubtedly was to come…because tonight it was her turn to entertain the Lord.



Since she had nothing but her womanly charms, and those were obviously not valued highly in this strange land, the female wardens had rigorously taught her how to please a Nordic Master she had never seen once.



She perceived soft noises of what could only be other servants approaching the palanquin. Several muted commands were given, and she felt the carriage being lifted. The usual wobbly feeling she got when carried inside this symbol of nobility made her relax a little, the first time since she had been rudely awakened this morning and had grasped that the dreadful day had finally arrived.



*



She had suspected it the previous evening, when she was denied her usual ration of food, though it had only been a hunch, a brief curiosity prompted by her unbroken ability to observe and reflect her environment.



Since any decorum she had become accustomed to for her whole life was long lost in the basements of this — as she now realized – huge fortress, her two wardens watched her defecate in the morning, expected her to clean herself under their watchful eyes, their usual distaste visible in their broad faces. She was then told to remove all clothing and present herself.



She hated it. It was like telling a dog to sit next to its master, and to stay, with no power to question the logic of the command. They treated her as if she were an animal in training. She understood the reason — the language barrier made communications with her difficult, so the enforcement of a new social order had to be made clear through the use of rudimental commands that even a dumb animal could understand. In her case, it meant either the minimum in personal freedom, or pain enforced through cruel punishment.



The command to present herself wasn’t to adopt a specific position, which she had to assume in order to be inspected — that would be enough for an animal to grasp. No, she had to make herself available to her captors, to give them unhindered access to her very body and its functions. The degrading part was her implicit compliance by her surrendering of her body to someone else. For example, to move her bowel, she had to widen her stance, lower the upper part of her body, grasp the cheeks of her bottom and spread them for as long as necessary. But that wasn’t all. Her head had to be up high, her body graceful in appearance, worthy of her former nobility, and yet she was being observed like a child not ready to control its bodily discharges.



When the stronger of the two wardens tied her hands behind her back, she understood something new was to come. The meaner one, who never gave her any response other than utter contempt, suddenly produced a flexible tube with a phallic nozzle attached to it. With the usual sadistic pleasure that this dreadful woman had always shown to her, she slowly greased her left hand with lard, and then formed a fist which she slowly inserted into the phallic nozzle to lubricate it. She made it look as if it was hard for her fist to open up to the pumping motion of the nozzle, smiling deceitfully. Her smile turned to a broader grin, when she realized the captive understood what was about to happen.



But the warden had inadvertently given the observant Spaniard a helpful hint to reduce the discomfort she was about to induce. She tried to relax her bottom, but couldn’t, because of the sudden stress prompted by the realization that she was prepared for the special occasion she had been frightened of for such a long time. Every orifice in her beautiful body was going to be prepared to be used when so desired by the Lord, which included parts not necessarily designed for that purpose, and had therefore to be cleaned of the less arousing byproducts it usually contained.



While the stronger one spread her cheeks, exposing her untarnished sphincter, the sadist forced the phallic object past the tight barrier, which was unable to reject the forced intrusion into her rectum. She grunted, and tried to rear up to repel the assault, but was unable to do so by the brute force of her jailers. The pain made her pant. She was slapped hard on her buttocks and ordered to be silent. She knew if she resisted even the slightest, they would only become crueler and would inflict even more pain. So she bit her lips and tried to accommodate the violation, shedding tears in anger and pain.



The sadist then proceeded to pour liquid through a funnel until her stomach visibly distended and she had the feeling her intestines would burst. They made her hold the liquid for several unbearably grueling minutes, before finally allowing her to noisily evacuate into a bucket, mocking her, laughing at her, ridiculing her degrading situation. She was just glad her ordeal was over, for the moment.



The strong one untied her wrists and again commanded her to assume the presenting posture. She complied immediately. The sadist held her nose in a mocking fashion and told her she better clean up, subtle hinting another round of punishment, then they brought several buckets containing cold water and left.



*



The palanquin had come to a stop. She heard the authoritarian voice of a woman unknown to her uttering commands to several servants at once, felt the curtains move, and then was ungently lifted out of her carriage. She sensed the presence of the mysterious woman close to her and, by the vocal reaction of her two tormenters, judged her to be in a much higher position than they were. The sadist unhooked her cape and took it, leaving her standing naked.



She felt the strange woman struggling to suppress her rage, obviously not pleased by her appearance, but finally directing her anger towards her tormenters. The speed and eloquence of her speaking indicated she was a Nordic noblewoman. She didn’t understand a single word that was said, but understood that the state of her appearance was obviously not appreciated.



She was getting cold, shivering. Afraid to move she stood silently, still blindfolded. The activity around her had increased. Several candles must have been brought into the room because she saw the influx in light through the blindfold. Finally, she was wrapped in a warming blanket.



Prepared



She didn’t comprehend fully what was going on around her, but by the pace of the activity and the quickness with which each command was executed, it became clear to her that the woman now in charge wielded considerable power. She would be cleaned and groomed according to the instructions of that woman who deemed her not presentable in her current state; that much she had understood. Unable to observe her surroundings, but still wrapped in the blanket, which for the first time actually warmed her enough so she forgot she was in the land of snow, ice and even colder winds, she managed to focus her senses on what was going on.



She felt the room becoming warmer and more humid by the minute. Small pearls of sweat started to form on her forehead, and her toes began to ache, so that she finally grasped in what poor state she was, since she obviously hadn’t realized that they had slowly been freezing during the grueling daylong tribulation by her tormenters. She had been solely focused on enduring their painful torture, and her body must have shut down some of its functions, in order to survive on what energy was left. She tried to forget the day’s horrible events and concentrate on the moment, to save her strength, because she was convinced this was only an intermezzo in her ongoing struggle to survive.



The sweet scent of spices unknown to her began to engulf the room. There were still servants circling with what she assumed were buckets of warm water, emptying them into a large container, which she suspected was a bathtub.



“I’m going to have my first bath in months,” she concluded gladly, as only one of noble birth who had been denied a perceived birthright for such a long time might think. Before she could contemplate that thought any further, the blanket was removed and two soft hands guided her a few steps forward and then stopped her. Her feet welcomed the soft touch of a carpet. Although again completely naked, she wasn’t cold anymore.



The familiar order to present herself was given by the woman in charge. She widened her stand, leaving sufficient distance between her legs, to give unhindered access to her sex and bottom. She raised her arms and folded her hands behind her head. The woman approached her. She could smell her. She smelled nice, exclusive; a fragrance of roses combined with some unknown Nordic herb was mixed with the woman’s own body odors. There was sudden silence in the room; all activity had stopped. She imagined all eyes in the room now focused on her and feelings of shame, embarrassment, and vulnerability made her swallow uncomfortably.



A soft touch on her belly interrupted the unbearable silence and made her jump. “Ssssh!” murmured the woman, not unpleasantly, but still like one would do to prevent a horse from panicking. She was told to resume the assigned stance and deduced from her tone that she would not be hurt by this woman, but was expected to follow every command immediately.



She positioned herself once more. Again, silence. The woman touched her again. This time, she cupped her breasts, caressed them softly, circling her areola in a slow but steady motion, pinching her nipples, forcing them to swell. She was ashamed not being able to prevent that from happening. Obviously satisfied by her breasts’ reaction, the woman stopped the manipulations and slowly lowered her fingers towards her sex, but stopped just short of her pubic hair. The woman seemed to hesitate.



Another moment of silence passed. She heard the woman sniffing her; she seemed genuinely concerned about her current state. Finally, the noblewoman gave meticulous instructions on how she was to be washed and groomed, how to treat her wounds from the beatings she had received during the day, and how everything had to be done thoroughly, but in a gentle fashion, not like the pigs in the dungeons. She raised her voice again, which made it clear that any deviation would be punished mercilessly. It was clear to the Iberian beauty that she would never want to antagonize this woman, and she was glad the threat was not directed against her. The noblewoman left.



The room had been darkened as several candles were moved elsewhere. She felt hands untying the blindfold, and she slowly opened her eyes, allowing them to become accustomed to the new surroundings. Her earlier thoughts about the bathtub had been correct; in front of her stood a fairly large container, warm vapor slowly rising from its hot contents. Next to it stood a voluminous woman who reminded her of the midwife her father had employed when she was little. The woman who had taken off her blindfold was about her own age, but much more muscular, indicating that she had lived a servant’s life of long and hard workings for her masters; the woman was looking at her inquiringly, not sure how to proceed.



Since the Spaniard had still not changed her stand, the two Nordic servants were confused, probably because of the instructions to treat her gently; they didn’t quite know how to continue. Finally, the fat woman patted the water, indicating that she was to enter the bathtub. She didn’t need any further encouragement and gladly stepped forward, but her legs gave out, the repressed anxiety finally finding an outlet; the prospect of a warm bath was too much for the abused beauty to handle. The room started to spin, she gasped for air — everything went dark as she blacked out.



*



She is running, desperately trying to find the exit, noises becoming louder. Suddenly, there he is blocking the entrance, wearing parts of the body armor of a Nordic knight, his face hidden behind a helmet, wielding a huge sword. He commands her to serve him. She immediately falls on her knees, submissively folds her arms behind her back and meekly opens her lips, signaling readiness to receive him. He approaches her, rams his sword into the ground and opens his fly, taking out his large member. Fearful of its size, she begs him to spare her. But he ignores her and tells her to worship his cock. She looks at the huge crown; its protective skin slowly retracting, exposing the angry red head already leaking its salty lubrication.



She fearfully starts to lick the red glans, tasting the saltiness, smelling the musky scent it surrounds. His eyes are filled with raw lust, empty of any mercy, his arousal increasing because of her apparent reluctance to accept his manhood, its multiple veins swelling fully. “Suck it!” he intones threateningly, one hand still resting on the large sword. She tries to looks at him, but can’t see his face because of his helmet; only the unforgiving eyes, filled with desire to see her relieve him of his lecherous drive, to orally claim her, are visible to her.



She tries to widen her lips to accommodate its size; the engorged glans slowly enters her stretched jaw. Panic engulfs her as she has to breathe through her nose. Both of his hands hold her head, stopping her from retreating. Snake-like, his cock slowly forces its way deeper into her throat, making her gag. She lifts her hands pleadingly, but he ignores her silent, desperate plea for mercy and shoves his organ down her throat.



Unable to breathe, desperately trying to accommodate the obscene invasion, she senses him looking for friction, without which he wouldn’t be able to climax. His handling becomes more aggressive, he lusts for release now. Unable to repel his attack, her vision starts to grey out due to the lack of air, her eyes start to bulge. She can’t breathe…



Finally she was able to scream and woke up, holding her neck in a desperate attempt to escape the nightmare.



Inspected



She found herself resting in a comfortable bed. The horrible images of her latest dream still vivid on her mind, she gradually started to take in her new surroundings and examined the room she found herself in. The large bed covering had kept her warm in an otherwise cold environment. Little snowflakes slowly descended through a small window, already forming a snow patch on the floor, prompted her to snuggle under the warming blanket. She smelled nice; gone was the foul stench of the dungeon. Her hair had been washed extensively, because it felt soft and had regained its intense blackness; curls had started to form, making its general appearance even more inviting to look at.



The swellings, resulting from the repeated beatings had been bandaged, and she could smell different aromas of healing herbs underneath it. Her feet were wrapped in warm socks; gone was the temporary numbness in her toes. Although there were no candles in this room, it was sufficiently lit by the light streaming in through the window, leading her to assume that it must be around noon. Slowly she recollected last night’s events until her fainting. After the horrifying treatment in the dungeons of the vast castle, she was mystified by the sudden change in behavior towards her. She hadn’t been delivered to the Lord.

“Why,” she kept asking herself, “this unexpected treatment?”



She felt refreshed, her energies replenished; she hadn’t been in such good shape for a long time. The warm bed made her drift off again. In her dream she was finally sailing home, the warm Mediterranean breeze rustling the ship’s sails. She saw her father, worried, his face in deep thought, his once dark hair now completely grey. Although she danced around him like she had done when she was still a little girl, spoiled by his affection, he now didn’t take any notice of her efforts to get his attention. Suddenly the sea stirred up, and the waves became threatening. She could hear people shouting, but didn’t understand what was said. Somebody touched her, shook her…she woke up.



*



She recognized the face of the woman who tried to wake her. The room was dark by now, only dimly lit by the lone candle the midwife was carrying. Since she detected urgency in the servant’s face, she stood up immediately and was handed the cape she had worn earlier. The muscular servant had entered the room and urged both of them to hurry. The three women hurriedly left the by-then freezing cold room, and followed a narrow aisle until they reached a closed door, which the pudgy servant opened. The southern beauty was momentarily blinded by the intense illumination in the room, but welcomed the warm temperature originating from an open fireplace. The younger servant took her cape and motioned her to stand on the rug next to the fire. Both women started to remove the bandages and seemed relieved with the results; eventually, they removed the woolen socks.



The muscular servant moved a bench from one corner of the room and positioned it close to the warming fire, covering it with a woolen quilt and finally bidding her to lie face down on it. Both servants started to massage her with an oily substance. The kneading and greasing motion prompted her to relax; she closed her eyes, while every part of her body was massaged by the two servants. They had her switch sides, repeated the process starting with her chest, greasing her breasts, moving downward along her body until finally rubbing her toes. It felt great. She was reminded of her former life of luxury, when regular massages by servants were considered routine.



It must have subconsciously been reflected in her demeanor and movements, because the two Nordic servants, used to that treatment by nobles, instantly switched to more servile behavior. When they combed her hair, she was her old self.



A loud knock on the door interrupted the peaceful ministrations and the three women were startled. The young servant left for the door and after a brief exchange returned with a velvet blindfold. Still polite, the muscular woman indicated her intentions to once again block the southerner’s vision, thereby painfully reminding her of her lost status. The new blindfold darkened her vision completely. The fleeting feeling of dignity the young beauty had enjoyed was once again replaced by uneasiness, and her anxiety resurfaced, resulting in a broad nervousness.



She could hear the two servants rearranging the bench, collecting their tools and finally leaving the room. Long minutes of nothingness passed, her state of anxiety quadrupling in that time. Gone was the confidence; the gruesome feeling of confinement had come back with a vengeance. When she finally recognized movements outside the door, she was again reduced to her captive status.



“Present yourself!”



Recognizing the firm voice of the noblewoman, she complied instantaneously, offering her body in the by now accustomed degrading manner, fearfully waiting to be inspected. The Norman lady approached her, studied her appearance for several moments, and seemed satisfied. This time anticipating the examination, she tensely waited for the woman to touch her; expecting her to touch her breasts again, she felt her nipples harden above the puffy areolas.



As one would encourage a puppy, the lady commended her on her hardening nipples and in so doing, again subtly shamed her. She felt exploring fingers on her upper lip, gently moving along its prominent cupid’s bow, encouraging its opening by soft pressure, expecting access, finally revealing her white front teeth. She started to explore the beauty’s oral cavity, thereby lubricating her fingers. She tested the Spaniard’s gag reflex by slowly but steady slipping her two fingers towards her throat. There was none; in that regard she had been successfully desensitized. The noblewoman continued to explore her mouth, now less interested in its composition, and more in establishing and reinforcing subjection, before finally withdrawing her fingers.



She felt a soft pressure being applied to her back, indicating the upcoming inspection of her other orifices and she widened her stand, to ease access. By now her heart was hammering in a state of apprehension. She held her bottom cheeks apart, to ease penetration. She felt the fingers of the noblewoman, still lubricated by her own saliva, following the groove between her buttocks until they reached the cleft directly above her back entrance, where dark hair surrounded the location of her anus. The noblewoman softly explored the darker skin surrounding her opening in a circling motion, obviously intended to help her relax; but she finally applied pressure with her fingertips to indicate the upcoming anal penetration.



Because of the gentle explorations the captive was able to relax, enabling a smooth penetration of the external opening of her rectum. The outer ring of her anal passage gave way to two fingers, slowly but firmly invading her intestines. Her instinct to go on tiptoes, to rear up, was met with a soothing “Shhhh!” and applied counter pressure from the noblewoman’s left hand. She gasped because of the humiliating exploration of her private parts. Like a prized animal, she was examined by the noblewoman, who found her back passage tightening up around her fingers, when she began to move them in a slow pumping motion in and out of her posterior opening.



Finally satisfied with the humiliating checkup of her aft, the woman then proceeded to softly circle her perineum, indicating the imminent examination of her vagina. This gave the beauty time to spread her lips, to reveal her rosy interior. Because of her fear and overall stressed condition, she wasn’t sufficiently lubricated and therefore anticipated another unpleasant penetration of her last orifice.



The noblewoman was obviously mindful of her dryness, because she interrupted the examination. The beauty sensed movements, and suddenly smelled her own pungent scent on the noblewoman’s hand, now close to her face. Not sure if she would be able to overcome her initial repulsion, she remained steady, waiting for the Norman’s command.



“I’ll check your cunt with or without your help, young lady!” she impatiently threatened.



She decided to help. It wasn’t the smell of her own sex, which had her hesitating earlier; it had more to do with her not being aroused. She wasn’t a prude, and had smelled and manipulated her sex many times, but now she was just immensely scared of the evening’s development. She opened her mouth.



The noble woman was clearly aware of the Spaniards charms, because she was visibly stirred, when the young woman accepted her repeated oral meddling and finally commanded



“Spit!”



She did.



“Again!” she ordered.



Satisfied with the amount of wetness on her fingers, the noblewoman returned to force herself into beauty’s ultimate treasure, ignoring the groaning caused by her ministrations. She found the captive to be exquisitely tight, due to the imposed period of non-sexual activity. She started to grab one of her breasts, squeezing it in a milking downward movement, enjoying the total control she had over the beauty’s body. But she knew this pearl needed to be awakened first, to be fully enjoyed and that it was not hers to command.



Admired



The female captive found herself once again alone near the fireplace. The degrading examination had ended, the Norman gone, and her heart still beat fiercely, keeping her in a state of high apprehension, emotionally and physically battered by the demeaning treatment, the outright rape by that noblewoman.



All the women she had met in this castle — and she had only encountered females, except the guards yesterday and the Norman horde who raided her entourage long ago — had tried to make sure she understood her lost status. She had started to accept it and had resigned herself to the fact of her being a mere slave. But the last several hours had revived her buried remembrances of her nobility; it was still residing within her, which was why she felt so miserable after the noblewoman’s treatment.



She recognized several individuals entering, felt someone removing her blindfold, thereby enabling her to more rapidly observe and assess her surroundings, and greatly reducing her level of tension. She was again surrounded by women whom she had never met.



“They must all be servants,” she observed, “but are robed in a nobler style.”



They had brought a stool, positioned it near the fire and politely indicated for her to sit down. Several different pieces of clothing were arranged along the bench. One happy tradition of her mother’s which had most delighted her was the trying on of different clothes. They had both spent countless hours reviewing, fitting, and arguing over the various outfits presented by merchants from almost every part of the known world. That’s why she immediately judged the material and style to be most exquisite.



“So they are going to dress me, only to have the Lord unpeel me, when he wishes to do so, like a banquet with many courses,” she mused bitterly.



They started to redo her hair; applied makeup to make her lovely lips even fuller and her eyelashes longer, and scented her with a fragrance smelling of cross-leaved heath, which she found quite fitting, even in her dire situation. When they finally let her pick a garment, she made her decision based on details which she reckoned would be the hardest for him to undo, unless he were to cut it right off.



It took all the help she could get from the servants to put in on. It was woven as a single piece and had therefore to be turned over her head in a movement demanding assistance. She was surprised at how absolutely perfect it fit.



“How did they get my measurements? The tailor must be very sure of his skills,” she thought, impressed by the excellent planning and craftsmanship, which must have been put into it.



Tight around her waist, it accentuated her hourglass figure; the low cut around her bust nicely emphasized the cleavage of her white breasts, ultimately downplaying their fullness, leaving adequate mystery for the tempted male stare. She had to smile, it was that gorgeous. It widened considerably below her hips, leaving ample room for her to dance. The arrangement of its three colors made every movement of hers sensual, purple red being its most dominant, covering everything except for the part in the front where it was replaced by a darkish brown, interwoven by golden decorative patterns, again highlighting her womanly curves. The ends of its sleeves widened starkly and were of the same color, so she could by her own choosing, use her arm movements as a distraction from her charms while dancing.



It was obvious that the three servants couldn’t hide their enchantment. She looked absolutely spectacular. The poor beauty’s emotions oscillated between pride and an empty nothingness caused by the upcoming event. One servant left straightaway, while the remaining ones neatly folded the unused garments in a small chest, leaving the room empty except for the bench and the small stool they again bade her to sit on.



The next moments were the longest, the most dreadful, because now it had finally come to surrender herself to the Lord. Waiting for something to happen when she didn’t exactly know how it was going to end, preceded by long confinement in solitude, torture, explicit degradation due to sexual innuendos made it hard for her to hold her outward composure.



Finally she heard voices, male voices.



“Be strong. I have to be strong!” she caught herself uttering.



The door opened and there he was — or so she thought — huge, loud, long slightly grey hair and a full beard, a long scar across his face, dressed in a surcoat and wearing gloves. That’s what she glimpsed in the second he entered. They had forbidden her to look above the Lord’s neck; hence she hated herself for the little indiscretion and hopped nobody had noticed. From then on she kept her eyes to the ground, subserviently.



He ordered everybody to leave.



On the outside the southern beauty’s demeanor hadn’t changed; she was still sitting gracefully on the small stool, but inside, her remaining ego had just been squashed. She wouldn’t survive the remaining night with this fearsome Norseman.



*



They had met twice before, fought alongside in a successful raid, thereby establishing mutual respect, and later had crossed swords during a tournament which began their ongoing rivalry. Gunnarr had spotted the small group of riders some time ago and followed their movements as they swiftly ascended the winding path leading to his camp. Gunnarr went back towards his marquee and was informed by one of his scouts that while the Norsemen were still occupied unloading their ships; the young lord had decided to press ahead quickly, eager to return home.



Within minutes the small squad had reached the camp, speedily pressing forward toward his position, driving their horses to an even harder gallop, despite the small distance remaining between them. His intimidated guards moved back a little, but he was unimpressed, retaining in his broad stance, even if it seemed as if they would run him over. The horses were restrained at the last moment, the leader of the group dismounting while the animals were still scrambling to a halt, and embraced him heartily.



“Gunnarr, friend, I’m glad to see you.”



“You are a show-off, old friend,” he stated dryly, and returned the embrace.



“I know, but you need to replace your guards, because they seemed impressed.”



“Yeah,” he returned somewhat reluctantly, acknowledging the young Lord’s awareness and absurd ability to mix fun with purpose. “Come with me, we need to talk.” He guided him into his large tent.



*



“It was on our way back that we encountered the small vessel and boarded it. It must have been a merchant’s ship, because they didn’t put up much of a fight. That’s where I found her.”



“Greedy bastard!” he chuckled amusedly, knowing he would have taken the same opportunity. “So why are you telling me all this, Gunnarr?”



“Well, I know of your fondness for exotic women, so I thought, why not bring her along as a present for you. I mean, I still don’t get your taste, but who am I to judge?”



“But you deemed her beautiful enough to get my attention, right?”



“Eiríkr, believe me, she is not what I would choose. But for a Mediterranean native, she is pretty hot.”



“You are such a barbarian!” Gunnarr retorted, grinning mischievously, mocking his friend for his obvious distain of everything foreign. “Where is she now?”



“To tell you the truth, I’m not sure. As you might understand, when we returned from our last raid, I was eager to see my wife and son. So I sent her with some of the stuff we found on the ship as a token of my gratitude to your turnkey…”



“You did what?”



“I know, not a smart idea, but given my homesickness at that time, being worn out and such…you get my drift,” Gunnarr replied, a little abashed by his friend’s reaction.



“I know you meant well. Thanks for your generosity and understanding of my…” Eiríkr paused, thinking on how to not insult his friend again, to get it right “…urge to plug every hole I can lay my hands on.”



Gunnarr’s face lit up, before he finally burst into hearty laughter.



*



When all the servants had left, he ordered her to stand up, eyed her thoughtfully.



“This foreign woman indeed has a lot of grace and beauty,” he thought, while continuing to assess her appearance. “I don’t know what all the fuss is about. She doesn’t look mistreated at all…well, maybe scared to death,” he acknowledged to himself.



The turnkey wasn’t going to change that. Years of dealings with captives who had to be turned into manageable slaves told him fear is always a good way to enforce compliance. Treating this woman respectfully would only encourage her defiance. But he had to make up for the perceived mistake by the young master, of her being abused in his realm, and he therefore decided to personally present her to the Lord.



He observed her face, the clear intention not to look at him, and decided to preserve this condition by blindfolding her. But she needed some protection for the walk to the Lord’s chambers; therefore he left her standing without any further command, exited the room, and gave the proper instructions to the waiting servants.



*



“I’m not to his liking. I don’t know what they are going to do to me now!” She became hysterical; such nerve-wracking was her tension, caused by her devastating conclusion.



She was still agitated when the servants returned, put some ugly but warm shoes on her, and again blindfolded her, steadying her movements and finally escorted her out of the room. The thoughts of meeting those two horrible women again, abusing her to their liking, probably now even more, because there was no more value to her, tormented her mind while she was being led along.



The outside corridors were cold and unforgiving, and the ugly shoes helped enormously to shield her small feet from the snow, but she had different thoughts on her mind. They reached the chambers, where the jail master had been waiting, quickly. When she heard his loud voice, she was again rocked to the core, but surprised when he took her hand and guided her inside. It was warm again. Somebody took off the shoes and when she felt a very fine carpet under her feet, she concluded instantaneously, even in her frantic state, that she was finally going to be presented to the real Lord.



Beauty



He had her led along slowly, setting the pace for was about to come, motioning the two musicians to play, silently acknowledging his appreciation to the turnkey who had personally brought her to him, and quickly dismissing him. When they were finally alone, except for the two minstrels positioned behind a large paravent, he took assessment of his friend’s so-called gift.



The fact that she had been blindfolded suited him well, because it gave him the opportunity to take a good look at her, before giving her the chance to do the same. He liked this advantage, appropriate for his playful personality.



She was taller than expected, much younger than he — he judged her to be in her early twenties, and had to smile because of the dress she had chosen to wear. He moved in a little closer; her skin was very white around her elegant neck and …



“Mmh… nice!” he almost blurted, instantly drawn to her charms, teasingly hidden under her dress. Then he observed her face and realized that the poor thing was scared to death. “What have those monsters in the dungeon been doing to her?” he wondered in outrage.



He came up behind her and removed the blindfold, then quickly distanced himself from her, stretching out comfortably on the large divan next to the enormous fireplace which brightly illuminated his chamber across the room, making it hard for her to evaluate him quickly, when she recovered her vision.



She didn’t move at first, seeming to be lost in the vastness of the room, but when her eyes adjusted to its brightness, she slowly began to dance, keeping her sight subserviently to the ground. He was blown away by her facial features. Her straight nose led to the fullest lips he had ever seen, slightly open because of her labored, obviously agitated breathing, revealing her perfect white teeth. Her brown eyes, outlined by dark, bushy, well-shaped eyebrows, indicated her Mediterranean origin, and her whole face was framed by an incredible fullness of dark, slightly curling, shoulder-length hair.

Her womanly features, her incredibly small waist moving sensually, gracefully, to the soft tunes of the bards, made him swallow. Gunnarr had indeed given him a kingly present, because he was mesmerized by her beauty, by her shy nobility and delicate dignity, but he was disturbed by her obvious anxiety, the profound concern visible in her otherwise lovely face. He had to calm her down; otherwise there would be little enjoyment for either of them. And he already longed for this woman; she had him hypnotized, literally melting away his lordly pride, replacing his normally controlled composure with awe and desire.



While watching her elegant and, to him, deeply arousing movements, he thought calmly about what to say to her. By now, he was sure they had mistreated her badly. He hoped that she was from the Iberian Peninsula, because he spoke a little Spanish, and assumed the quickest way to communicate with her would be in her mother tongue. Since nobody spoke Spanish in these parts, he was sure he would immediately get her attention, if she were indeed Iberian. He had to try.



“Mírame!” he finally commanded her.



She seemed stunned for a moment, unsure what to do, but had clearly understood what he had said. He repeated his command, this time speaking softly, injecting as much assurance and politeness as his deep voice was capable of, hoping she would sense that he was not being threatening.



“Mírame”



He could see her conflict, her clear surprise by his command, but also an incredible fear of looking at him. She had stopped moving, still struggling to overcome her fear.



He waited, thinking “Come on beauty, you can do this; if you see my face, it will be much easier for you.”



Another instant passed. The bards must have sensed the intensity of the moment too, because they stopped playing.



Finally, she hesitantly raised her eyes to his eyes.



*



By the manners that loud turnkey had silently retreated moments ago, she was sure now that she was with the ruler of this stronghold, and struggled between her overwhelming need to steal a quick glimpse, and the long months of induced fear of what might happen if she dared, needing to understand what she was up against. She then sensed his nearness, his deliberate appraisal of her, and imagined him to be a huge, fearsome, merciless monster, and was almost paralyzed when he finally freed her of the imposed darkness; she decided then that she would never have the courage to do any more than stare subserviently at the ground.



That was why his last command to look at him caught her completely off guard. This perceived monster not only spoke Spanish, but did so in a gentle and friendly tone; he had her puzzled. Finally, her curiosity won and she looked at him.



She had to suppress her surprise, to hold her composure, to resist her compulsion to cover her mouth, but there he was stretched out comfortably next to the fireplace, huge and imposing indeed, except for his expression. She knew that kind of look, had experienced it many times before, when men had courted her unsuccessfully, bored her with their superficial interest and lack of distinction. She was looking at a handsome man, one who obviously wielded a lot of power, but was seriously trying not to appear threatening, grinning almost comically. He couldn’t hide his obvious enchantment with her.



To overcome the awkward moment, she took the initiative and again lowered her eyes, slowly starting to dance again, visibly more comfortable than just moments earlier.



He softly called for the musicians to continue their play. Obviously not used to their master’s sweet tone, nothing happened, prompting him to call imperiously for their music, startling her, reminding her of his earlier restraint. The slow music continued, and she again eased into her performance. She felt his eyes glued to her, prompting her to use her charms alluringly. He was the first person to look at her with admiration and respect since her ship had been raided many months ago.



She was still agitated, her breathing labored, but in the last several moments something had changed — her fear. Even though the incredible emotional stress she had been suffering during the last several hours had obviously taken its toll, as evidenced by the fact that she danced slowly and it took all her strength and will to dance, but gone was her utter submissiveness. Her self-esteem and understanding of being a desirable women had somewhat returned.



The beauty still kept her eyes to the ground and concentrated on her dancing, trying her best to impress the Lord. Then again, every movement she made, all the ostensible innocence transmitted by her dancing, gave her something she had been denied ever since her capture, something the brutal and degrading enslavement had obviously not been able to eradicate — her awareness of being perceived as beautiful, even in these parts of the world. But it wasn’t any ordinary person who liked her charms; it was the most powerful figure in this realm.



What troubled her was why everyone else had treated her miserably, despite the fact that the Lord obviously liked her. She was realistic enough to understand that his current enchantment could easily turn into something else less comforting for her, so she decided to give her best, to use her knowledge of men’s cravings to captivate his interest. They had punished her throughout the dancing drills, when they deemed her movements not inflammatory enough, when she hadn’t rudely exposed her sex, wiggled her breasts, and degraded herself, and she had been completely naked then.



However, now she was dressed as a noble woman by of her own choosing, having selected the dress as a barrier against his expected advances, rejecting the more revealing ones precisely because of her distain for their lack of restraint. And now she wished to be able to show more, without losing her shy dignity, which seemed to captivate him.



The beauty had been dancing for some time without explicit eye contact, and felt that her resolve was weakening. She decided to use several gyrations to look at him surreptitiously, using the long sleeves of her dress as distraction. Her tenacity returned when she saw his enchanted face, not hiding his enthusiasm, but promptly catching and holding her eyes, not once distracted by her arms twistings. The song of the musicians ended, and she concluded her performance with a gesture of respect, performing a curtsey.



He applauded her performance, clapping enthusiastically, and since she had remained in the deep curtsey, he said, “Rise!”



She became light-headed and tottered somewhat, prompting him to jump up and approach her, extending his hand, saying “Take my hand.”



The Iberian hesitated only for a moment, and then accepted his hand.



“You need not be frightened!”



“I’m not my Lord … not anymore,” she uttered softly.



He noticed her sudden paleness and inquired, concerned, “You don’t feel well, do you?”



“May I have some water, please?”



“Of course. Servants!”



A side door opened and two servants entered, bowing respectfully and awaiting his orders.



“Bring water!”



He guided her to the divan, gestured for her to sit down, and took a seat next to her. The servant returned with a mug, offering it to the Lord. He took the mug and gave it to her, watching her intensely as she drank. The water was refreshing; she was really thirsty, drinking quite a bit, prompting him to inquire, when she finally gave back the mug almost empty, “You must be hungry too.”



“No, my Lord”



“I’m going to tell you this only once. Never lie to me!”



She closely observed his face and saw his concern, but also saw that he was serious about her always telling the truth.



“I don’t want to be a burden, my Lord.”



“Nonsense!” he retorted; then he addressed the servant: “Prepare a meal and bring wine!”



*



“Open up.”



He fed her a slice of apple, telling her to chew it slowly, observing her obey him. The food he had been feeding her was delicious. She had become accustomed to his nearness, and to his obvious pleasure in stuffing her with food and speaking bits of Spanish.



“Drink.”



The wine was heavy, and had loosened her up a bit, and reddened her cheeks. She felt it was too much already, but he kept holding the goblet to her mouth, insisting, deliberately feeding her inefficiently, so that it started to overflow, spilling and making a mess. Her eyes told him to stop, but he didn’t until the remaining wine was either swallowed or spilled.



“Let me help you with this.”



He took a small piece of cloth and dabbed her lips, then moved it towards her chin, paused, gradually following her neck downward, keeping her eyes locked to him as though she were under a spell as he continued towards her cleavage.



“You are naughty girl, spilling so much wine.”



“Yes, my Lord,” she shyly replied, lowering her eyes in obvious embarrassment, because of his teasing. He finally dropped the cloth. She kept her eyes down. His hand returned, gently scooping back her long hair, now concealing parts of her face, tenderly bundling it behind her ear. She liked the soft ministrations, his large hand fondly touching her, and caught herself longing for more, imperceptibly cuddling toward him. He kept caressing her hair, admired its full, intense blackness and slight silvery shine, felt her fragility now even more, since she had told him about her imprisonment in the dungeon, but intuitively kept arousing her senses, already clouded by too much wine.



She felt the rough skin of his hand and fingers, battle hardened, accustomed to wield a large sword, now softly manipulating her womanly longings, still buried under month-long deprivation, but slowly re-emerging under his gentle ministrations, like a flower that had been denied water for too long. Beauty’s emotions were confused by his temperate attitude towards her.



“What would you do, if I asked for a kiss?”



Taken aback by his unexpected question, she hesitated. He continued to play with her hair, now moving his hand under it, searching for the back of her neck, stroking it fondly, causing goosebumps, waiting for her to respond.



“I would kiss you, my Lord.” she answered blushingly.



“Show me!”



He waited, sensing her turmoil, moving his hand slowly down the back of her neck until he reached the hem of her dress, admiring her white skin, her soft hair reacting to his gentle touches. He saw her tremble, grabbed her chin calmly, and raised her face to meet his gaze. He looked at her beautiful face, met her dark brown eyes, and held her stare, finally observing her full lips. She took his clue and slowly met his lips. He sensed their fullness, reveled in their slight wetness in the brief moment they touched. He demanded, feeling her retreat, “Stay!”



She remained in her position and closed her eyes, humbled. He felt her warm breath, sensed her hesitation and commanded fondly,



“Again!”



This time she parted her lips slightly. He tasted the remnants of wine when he returned her kiss, exploring her slight opening with his tongue, searching; finally meeting hers, enmeshing. Tempting passion, he grabbed her, drawing her even closer; her slight resistance broken, she finally gave in, returning his desire, unclenching her muscles at last, inviting him to explore.



He was strong, his desire for her obvious in his unleashed passion, his arousal manifest in his rougher handling of her. Both his hands held her head, their tongues entwining in passionate kissing, provoking her to softly resist his impulsive wildness. Finally he let go of her, his manhood roused.



She looked at him, her own passion revived, her confusion visible, caused by the anguish ingrained in her during the preceding month of torture; silently, she pleaded with him to be gentle, not to destroy what he had opened, what she was willing to give. He saw it and smiled, filled with desire for this incredible beauty, her delicate features and womanly curves bringing his male instincts again to boiling point.



“You are very beautiful!” He finally broke the silence. “I must concede I haven’t met a woman like you before.”



She observed his face and found truth in his words. His warm smile was genuine; the fire in his eyes spoke of a man filled with desire for her. It helped to reclaim parts of her, which have been lost, buried in captivity, almost broken by torture and degradation. But she caught herself longing for his gentle touches, was captivated by his restraint, by how he was unwilling to force himself on her. Still, memories exhausted her.



“May I have some more wine, my Lord?”



“Certainly,” he answered, smiling naughtily, refilling the goblet. “Do you want my help, or do you think you can do it all alone, this time?”



“I’d like your guidance, my Lord,” she answered with a shy smile.



He didn’t need any further encouragement, and moved closer to her, holding her gently; their eyes met again. “Do you know that hawks choke up food to feed their offspring?”



“Are you going to feed me wine, my Lord?”



He didn’t answer, but sipped from the goblet. Their lips met again, and he slowly fed her the wine from his mouth. She swallowed, looking at him, smiling pertly.



“Oh, the poor birdie isn’t filled yet.”



He repeated the action; she swallowed again, but this time didn’t let go of him, embracing his broad shoulders, initiating the smooches which he willingly returned. They were tangled for several moments, before he started to kiss her cheeks, placing caresses on her lids and brows, nibbling on her earlobes, making her giggle. He again had to observe her, as if the whole situation wasn’t real, her face flushed because of their heated exchange and too much wine, her long hair mussed, her white bosom moving because of her heavy breathing, her womanly figure wrapped tightly by the dress.



When he finally stopped imagining her without her dress, he found her observing him, and knew she had seen his lustful longing for more. She smiled at him, stating “You seem to glow, my Lord. It’s quite warm in here. Will you require my assistance to open your shirt?”



“Would I?” he asked, laughing. “I am afraid it has to come off completely, considering how warm it is in here.”



She moved closer, watching his expression, while she slowly unbuttoned his shirt. His shaved face already showed signs of stubble; his light brown hair was dense, ending at his broad neck. Before she opened the final button, she again stared into his blue eyes, as if she could read what he was thinking. Finally releasing it, she indicated that he should take it off.



He pulled it over his head, letting her observe his body. She saw the scars across his torso, his skin roughed up around his shoulders, probably because of the heavy armor he was forced to wear in battle. He wasn’t overly muscular, just lean; there were still bluish discolorations on several parts, indicating to her that his wounds from the last fight had not fully healed. She softly touched his chest, playfully curled its hair, moved along a scar.



“You have seen many battles, my Lord,” she intoned softly, her tone a combination of admiration and fear.



“Fought too, between my men! I’ve been lucky so far; everything is still there!” he answered wryly, smiling. He saw fear reappearing in her face and understood. Gunnarr wasn’t faint hearted, and the taking of her ship must have been horrifying for her to watch.



“Would you like some more wine?” he asked, trying to overcome the heaviness of the moment.



“Yes.”



“You think you can do it on your own?”



She smiled. “This time.”



He handed her the goblet, watched her slowly drinking, as if she was trying to forget, drowning her thoughts. Her cheeks had become quite rosy, but he liked her flushed face even more. He longed for her delicate beauty, and once again started his soft caressing of her graceful neck, playing with her hair, placing kisses along her neck, ultimately giving her quite a love bite, making her laugh again.



She slowly stood up, making him look at her in bewilderment.



“My Lord, I have chosen this dress, because I thought it would be the hardest for you to remove. It took almost three servants to get it over my head. Would you be so kind as to avert your eyes for a moment, so I can get it off?”



He smiled warmly. “I can do better than that. Would you allow me to call for servants, to help you, remove…” exploding into laughter “…your armor?”



She had to giggle too and agreed, this time only slightly embarrassed.



Breathless



He had blindfolded himself, sitting on his divan, half naked. Some of the servants stared at him in confusion, but the quick witted ones smiled. They helped her out of the tight dress; she welcomed their support as it turned out to be quite a challenge. She was getting restless, because of how long it was taking, fearing that he might become angry. But her anxiety was unfounded, because he enjoyed the sound of frustrated whispers and the final relief when they had stripped her.



He ordered everybody, including the musicians, to leave. When finally everyone was gone, he asked if she would allow him to take off his blindfold.



“Would you allow me the honor of returning your vision, my Lord?” she asked.



“Off course!” adding “I didn’t realize how much you can take away, by blocking someone’s sight.”



“But didn’t your other senses become sharper?”



“No, but maybe you can help me with that.”



She slowly approached him, still sitting on his divan.



“I found the strongest sense to be smell; it helped me take in my surroundings quickly, but I also realized it can be the most painful.” She drifted back to the moment when she had smelled her palanquin.



“I can sense your nearness, but you have to come closer in order for me to smell you.”



She sneaked behind him, waited, observed him inhaling softly; she gently grabbed his hair and placed a kiss on his neck, lingering, letting him feel her soft lips. Seeing how her touch had caused him to react, she asked, “Which part of my body did you just feel?”



“That’s easy; those were your lovely lips.”



She circled the divan slowly several times before stopping slightly to his right, lifting her arm, exposing her armpit, moving in closer, remaining; she was getting aroused by her little game and whispered, “And what do your senses tell you now, my Lord?”



He smelled her slight fragrance, the combination of her own body odors mixed with the sweet scent of cross-leaved heath. He simply had to inhale deeply, to take in more of her delicious aroma, the intimacy of the action provoking his desire. She looked down at him, his face only inches away, and felt his breath on her breast, making her nipple erect, wrinkling her areola, making her arousal evident.



Smiling, anticipating her breast close to his face, sniffing, as if her scent would be able to guide him, he slowly moved towards her breast, and when he found it, heat rose in his face, unleashing his passion, he groaned in absolute arousal. She softly guided her puffed-up nipple towards his lips, inviting him to suck her breast. He accepted with alacrity, suckling her voraciously, his hands now holding her tight. He loved the firmness of her breast, and licked its nipple. Encouraged by her invitation, he started to explore her body, his hands moving along her back, downwards, pausing, admiring her low waist, moving lower before finally grabbing her bottom, feeling the full cheeks, noticing they were slightly colder than the rest of her body. Unable to hold back any more, his manhood hardened, painfully confined in his trousers. She saw his swelling, and smiled at her power to stir his longing.



“My Lord, shall I remove your trousers?”



“Yesss!”



“Please stand up”



He stood up, sensed her lowering herself in front of him, felt her soft manipulations as she quickly relieved him from his confinement, his member already engorged. She let his trousers fall to his feet, bidding him to step out of them.

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