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In a dusty display cabinet in a dusty neglected museum deep in East Prussia is a giant bronze cock. Well bronze coloured, it is actually cast iron with bronze gilding. Its head is fearsome. Its eye seems to follow you around the room and its wings are so exquisitely formed you would almost think it could fly.



A giant cock, and why was it made? A simple mistake, but behind it a story of a simple girl who preferred pigs to princes, a heart warming feel good story and so I have translated the words from the original Germanic into English for your delectation.



The Reluctant Princess. (Greta and Prince Armen) a.broadsword mmxiii



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The morning light streamed across the bed chamber as Prince Armen woke.



“Good morning your highness,” Greta his chambermaid chirped when she was sure he was awake.



“Uggghhhh,” he replied, “My head!” he said while staring at the girl and trying to remember the previous night’s party.



Greta was slim and agile with beautiful long blonde hair plaited into two pony tails.



Once his chambermaids were fat and ugly as his mother feared he would force himself upon them but now as she feared he would never desire a woman she had sought the most beautiful serving girl in the whole kingdom.



“Your father wishes to see you sire,” she chirped.



“Tell him to,” Armen snapped.



“Now sire,” Greta cautioned, “He merely wishes you to choose a wife.”



“But I am in love!” Armen protested.



“But Edward is not a girl, is he sire?” she pointed out.



Armen shook his head, how unfair, he reasoned.



“What am I to do?” he asked.



“Well you could,” Greta said, “Be like Cinderella.”



“What, put on a funny dress and wear glass slippers?” he asked.



“No,” she said, “Tell your father you met a girl at the masked ball last night and she rushed away but left.”



“Her glass slipper, she wore glass slippers and went home without one, really!” he countered, “Limping along wearing one shoe, I don’t think so.”.



“No, her dildo!” she laughed.



“What?” he queried.



“Her glass dildo!” Greta repeated, “You know.”



“No, to be quite honest,” he replied, “I don’t know.”



“A glass dildo, a widow’s comforter.” she said with an evil grin.



“So all these girls?” he asked.



“Exactly!” Greta exclaimed.



“So?” he asked.



“See who claims it and then,” she suggested, “Make them show you if it fits!”



“What make them push it!” he asked.



“Exactly!” Greta exclaimed, “It will be so funny! You could have every girl in the kingdom try it!” she laughed.



“Why?” he asked.



“Because,” she said enigmatically, “We use the cock off the statue in the courtyard as a pattern!”



“But it’s enormous!” he said.



“Ten times you own size,” she volunteered.



“Twice perhaps,” he allowed.



“And there won’t be a single girl or woman who can take it!” Greta laughed.



“And your point is?” he asked.



“Keep it up long enough and you will be king and can simply choose to alter the law so you can marry Edward!” she explained.



“But Edward will take it up the back easily so I may marry Edward straight away,” Armen declared delightedly, “Oh Greta you are so clever!”



Greta glared, that was not her plan at all, “Yes!” she said, “Wonderful, your father wants you.”



The Queen waited for Armen to leave his room before she sought out Greta, “Did it work?” she asked.



“Yes and no,” Greta said, “Yes he swallowed the plan, but no, he doesn’t want to stop with girls.”



“Oh god,” the Queen cursed, “You said the plan was foolproof.”



“But your son is a bigger fool than I thought possible,” Greta said sadly.



“You are very impertinent girl,” the Queen insisted.



“No Ma’am, your son is very stupid.” Greta sighed.



“Then you will have to marry him,” the Queen insisted.



“Oh please no,” Greta pleaded, “It’s bad enough being his maid.”



“My dear, you just have to bear him a son or two, nothing onerous.” the Queen explained, “Separate rooms, a footman for a lover, why you need barely set eyes upon him.



“No,” Greta insisted, “No!”



“Very well then,” the Queen agreed, “I’ll have the blacksmith make a brass copy of the statue’s cock.”



The Queen swept from the room and Greta was left alone in Armen’s room.



She kicked a few garments around the floor flicked a cobweb or two and then sat on the bed.



The bed was nice and soft so she slid under the covers, and before she knew it she felt nice and safe and warm and her hand stole under her gown and she began to gently finger her tight virgin vagina until she felt lovely and moist and was able to thrust one two and then three fingers inside herself which was particularly stupid if she wanted to prove she was a virgin for any reason.



Suddenly she heard voices, Armen and Edward were outside the door, quickly she rushed from the bed and busied herself.



“Ah maid, make haste, we wish to be alone.” Prince Armen commanded.



“Begging your pardon sir but the Queen she did order me to stay no matter what,” Greta lied.



“Oh stay then,” he snorted, “Stand in the corner and face the wall.”



“The Queen says,” Greta lied again.



“Bugger the Queen!” Armen laughed.



“That’s incest old chap!” Edward laughed.



“Hilarious,” Greta agreed.



“Where did you learn such words?” Edward asked.



“Here and there,” Greta admitted.



“Well keep them to yourself!” Edward insisted, but he was too late, the Queen had returned.



“Ah, downstairs Armen if you please your father wishes an audience,” she insisted.



They left Greta alone again, and she sat moodily on the chair wondering whether she should escape at night or try it in daylight on market day when it was very busy.



Nearly a week went by, and the Queen sent word that the bronze cock was ready and Greta was to collect it.



Greta knew instantly something was wrong, it was wrapped in parchment but was impossibly large.



“Its got wings!” she said as the blacksmith proudly showed it to her, “You stupid oaf its a Chicken!”



“As ordered,” he said, “A bronze cock.”



“She wanted a bronze cock,” Greta sighed, “Not a bronze cockerel!”



“Should have said,” the blacksmith replied.



“Are you the most stupid blacksmith that ever lived?” she asked.



“There’s one over in Dusseldorf what’s even stupider,” the blacksmiths apprentice said suddenly as he dodged the blacksmith’s backhand slap.



“Oh for heaven’s sake she wanted a dildo!” Greta sighed.



“Oh we got loads of they,” said the blacksmith, “What size?” he asked and he undid his breeches, “Like mine or smaller?”



Greta stared, it must have been six inches long and grey.



“Bigger,” she said confidently.



“Try a number three,” he said and the apprentice went off and came back with an iron penis.



“Only got in in Value Brand,” the apprentice said, “That’s iron see, standard is bronze then there’s”



“Thank you,” the blacksmith agreed, “Will Iron do, would you like to try it?”



“No thank you,” Greta said.



“You can have the silver for the same price if you let us watch you try it.” the blacksmith suggested proving he wasn’t entirely stupid.



“No!” Greta insisted.



“Half price, two for one,” the blacksmith offered.



“Oh very well,” Greta agreed, “Where can I hang my smock?”



Greta slipped her smock over her head leaving herself entirely bare except her sandals, her small but exquisite tits standing out proudly on her slim torso, the faint covering of downy golden hair hiding nothing of her perfect cunt lips.



“Bollocks,” said the blacksmith, “I cum in me pants.”



Poor Greta, no matter how hard she tried she just could not get her cunt lips around the silver shaft, they even got some of the militia from the Inn to make suggestions, as to what she should do, a passing delivery driver, a tramp, several monks en route to the monastery, a butcher, a baker, a watch and clock maker, all squeezed into the workshop where Greta struggled to shove the silver dildo up.



The drummer from the Militia arrived to play a drum roll every time she tried, the apprentice cleared the room and then let people back in if they paid a pfennig and poor Greta strained away trying everything she knew.



“I cannot!” she said finally after nearly twenty hours of exertion.



“Fetch a number two lad,” said the blacksmith who was not as stupid as he looked, “Bronze.”



The apprentice handed it to Greta, she lay back on the filthy workbench and eased the bulbous head of the very ordinary dildo between her cunt lips. “It fits!” the apprentice cried and a great cheer went up.



“Why didn’t you suggest that in the first place?” Greta asked.



“Uh?” said the blacksmith who wasn’t stupid at all but was a whole lot richer from the nights takings.



The crowd filed away leaving an empty workshop with blobs of cum over the floor and benches to show where filthy peasants had been wanking.



“You can have two number twos for price of one lass.” the blacksmith said helpfully, “One silver and one bronze if you help clear up all that cum.”



“I’m not licking up all that cum!” Greta insisted as she went to put her smock on.



The blacksmith wobbled and crashed to the floor as his knees gave way.



“He’s had a heart attack!” Greta cried.



“He just cum in his pants again,” the apprentice explained.



“I meant with a mop,” the blacksmith cried, “I reckon me cock split I cum so hard.”



Greta cleared the cum, scooping it into a glass jar to use as glue if there wasn’t a bull handy, and then with a cheery smile she wobbled back to the palace clutching two metal dildoes.



The queen was not amused, “You stay out all night and then come back with this, this, this tiddler!”



“Sorry,” Great said, “But I couldn’t get the number three up, and it was two for one and.”



“And what?” the Queen asked.



“I didn’t want to disappoint all the men who paid to watch,” Greta confessed.



“It gets worse,” the Queen sighed, “He wet the bed again.”



“Sorry,” Greta apologised.



“I told you,” the Queen said, “Four strikes of the clock wake him and relieve him.”



“I won’t do it again,” Greta said.



“But you are supposed to do it you stupid girl!” the Queen sighed, “Like getting glue from a bull, as it is the sheets are all stuck together and we may have to wash them!”



“Sorry, OK,” Greta snapped, “Let him marry his boyfriend why don’t you, then we’ll see who wears the trousers.”



Greta looked at the Queen and the Queen at Greta, “Who wears the dress?” Greta asked rhetorically.



Prince Armen was in a foul mood, he was playing cards with his friends when the Queen approached with Greta close behind, “Where were you in my hour of need?” he demanded.



“Out,” Greta replied angrily.



“I woke in a like of my own fluids girl, it is not good enough!” Armen said as his friends sniggered.



“Twenty and eight years and he wets the bed,” Greta sighed and his friends laughed out loud.



“Do you delight in humiliating me wench?” he asked.



Greta thought hard, actually she did, “Yes,” she agreed.



“Well I shall delight in torturing you at my wedding celebration!” he snapped.



“No more four o’clocks,” Greta threatened.



“Edward will oblige,” Armen insisted.



“Sire?” asked Herr Landsdorf head of palace security, “Is Edward, ah, bent?”



“Indeed and we shall be married!” Armen insisted.



“Now hang on Armie!” Edward protested, “We’re just chums.”



“But when you have you cock lopped off,” Armen reminded him.



“Now hang on, you are wearing the dress, I shall be king!” Edward exclaimed.



“No way!” Armen cried and Greta and the Queen slipped away.



Armen and Edward rowed late into the night and were still rowing at four o’clock when Greta came to find them to relieve Armen.



They sat in two easy chairs in the study facing each other so Greta knelt between them.Edward watched horror struck as Greta extracted Armen’s cock from his breeches and started stroking it, it stiffened instantly.



“Armen!” Edward protested.



“Oh very well, do his too,” Armen sighed so Greta fumbled his breeches and extracted his turgid grey cock.



“Yuck!” Greta exclaimed, “Sod that I would rather hang,” she said and she stood up and walked off.



“Stop,” Armen cried as he waddled after her with breeches at half mast and his rigid cock gyrating madly, and as Greta out ran him he turned to Edward saying, “Now look what you have done!”



Armen woke in an armchair, his back hurt, he was angry, and then his father appeared, “Big day my son.” he said.



“What?” Armen queried.



“Test day for the silver dildo,” the King announced, “There’s a queue a twenty yards long outside the palace.”



“What silver dildo?” Armen asked with a sense of dread.



“The one your mother has been on about for weeks, anyway there’s a queue a hundred yards long at the main gate.”



“You said twenty,” Armen challenged.



“Twenty wenches, but a couple of hundred spectators at a pfenning a throw,” The King explained, “Plus we have ale and knackwurst in a bread roll, and chicken nuggets.”



“I shall not be part of this!” Armen insisted.



“They have come to see fresh cunt not your stupid face,” the King sighed, “You better get your friend Edward in line if you want to marry him.”



Edward was indeed in line, dressed in a fetching pink smock with his cock taped to his belly with candle wax soaked bandages he waited to have a bronze rammed up his rectum.



The central courtyard was packed with people as the first woman stepped forward, not a noblewoman, nor a princess as some had hoped but a common prostitute. Ellie



A seat with footsteps was arranged on stage to reveal in as much detail as possible of the insertion and with a drum roll Ellie raised her smock to her chin revealing her nakedness and Herr Lansdorf took the dildo and without ceremony thrust it deep inside Ellie, so deep in fact that it twisted slightly and he lost his grip as he struggled to get it back out.



“It fits!” Ellie protested.



“Like a prick in a washing tub!” some wag insisted.



The castle erupted into raucous laughter, “You said it were a big one!” Ellie protested as Lansdorf took off his glove to push his whole hand past her black hairy belly to disappear inside her cavernous cunt to seek out the dildo, “I been shoving a table leg up because they said it was a big one!” she protested to raucous laughter.



The King laughed, the ale was selling well and they had two poachers to hang in the interval and all in all things were going well.



“I don’t think so,” Lansdorf shouted, “Next.”



Griselda tried next, she worked in the same whore house as Ellie an she too had been practising using a leg off the big table in the waiting room, predictably as she bared her charms the dildo disappeared inside her, “Without even touching the sides.”



“I don’t think so,” Herr Lansdorf adjudged, “Next!”



Next was Mathilda, then Chloe then Yvette, poor Lansdorf was getting tired of manipulating lost dildoes, and the crowd was getting bored.



“Put the Gay one on next,” the King ordered in a stage whisper.



Armen who had been watching from the back came forward to be by the Kings side, the Queen brought Greta down to be beside him, “Moment of truth lad,” the King said patronisingly.



Edward wanted to kneel on the seat and take it from behind but Lansdorf would have none of it, “No sir, ah, madam, ah, miss, ah whatever, you must sit like the other contestants.”



Edward sat as instructed and raised his smock, he looked ridiculous with his prick stuck to his belly and Lansdorf too a big breath and forced the bronze into Edwards tight bud of an ass hole, it went in barely 5cm.



“Sire, it barely fits,” Lansdorf announced.



“Then use the mallet man!” the King laughed.



“Mall it, Mall it!” the crowd started to chant led it must be admitted by Greta.



“You’re enjoying this,” the Queen suggested, and Greta just giggled.



Lansdorf had found a hammer by this time and he tapped the dildo.



“Whack it, it’s brass not glass!” someone said so Lansdorf did “Whack.”



“Aggghhh!” Edward screamed, and then again, higher pitched in complete agony as his ass started bleeding.



“Sire he bleeds,” Lansdorf explained.



“One more for luck,” the King suggested and Edward fainted, “Put him with the poachers,” the King said harshly for being gay was illegal at that time.



The mood turned sullen quite quickly, “Hang them!” they shouted



“Hang them, Armen, Hang them, Armen.” Greta encouraged them.



“You stupid girl,” the Queen sighed, “If they hang him you’ll never be queen.”



“I don’t want to be!” Greta insisted.



“Don’t knock it till you tried it, fine silk on your nipples beats rough smock cloth any day.” the Queen whispered, “Choice of footmen, no one ordering you about.”



“Oh,” Greta said, “I never thought.”



“So borrow one of my old dresses and try the dildo.” the Queen said.



“What show my unmentionables!” Greta said shocked.



“No!” the Queen said, “Suck it!”



Greta laughed, “Yes why not!” she agreed and they slipped away.



An hour later a dejected crowd were about to lynch the poachers when Herr Lansdorf announced, “Our final contestant Princess Margeurita!” and an almost unrecognisable Greta in a fairy tale princess dress three sizes too big stepped up on stage.



She sat on the chair and said, “Well wipe it off first, you don’t know where it has been!” which got a laugh and then when Lansdorf wiped it she took it and licked the end.



The crowd fell silent as she kissed the end and then tipping her head back she slid it down her throat and began to, well choke to be honest.



“The winner!” Lansdorf cried as she turned blue and he dragged the dildo form her mouth.



“Is she all right!” Armen cried and he rushed to her side, “You did that for me?” he asked.



“No, not really, it was fun,” Greta explained.



“Ladies and Gentlemen,” the King shouted, “There will now be a short interval while we erect the gallows, we have two poachers today and two homosexuals, Prince Armen and his friend Edward.”



“What?” Armen protested, “But I am to be married to Greta.”



“Indeed, married then hung,” the King said, “That way we have a Princess we can be proud of.”



“But the marriage is void unless consummated, and if I consummate I am not homosexual,” Armen said seeing the trap he had fallen into.



“Hang on don’t I get a say in this?” Greta asked.



“No,” the Queen snapped, “If you don’t like it I’ll have my dress back!”



There was a gasp as Greta pulled the dress over her head and threw it at the Queen



She realised her mistake instantly, blood vessels bulged on Armen’s forehead.



“No sire!” Lansdorf pleaded and he grabbed the dildo and forcing Greta into the chair he forced it deep inside her sweet virgin cunt, she gasped, and then Armen was on her.



“I have to, please forgive me!” he pleaded as he struggled to grip the slimy dildo sending sensations of unbearable pleasure coursing through Greta’s slim boyish body.



Fingers tugged at Armen’s fly buttons and with a cheer that could be heard in Onionstadt he mounted her and throwing the dildo to the crowd he started to hump.



He revelled in her moistness, no need to smear fresh lard over his cock after a dozen strokes like with Edward and quite suddenly Armen realised what he had been missing.



The cheering reached a crescendo but Armen didn’t cum so they got on with the hangings instead.



“Yes, Yes, Yes!” Armen cried.



“Shall we hang Edward for being gay?” Herr Lansdorf asked.



“Yes, Yes, Yes!” Armen answered,



“Or shall we send him to somewhere quite awful, Saffron Walden for instance?” Herr Lansdorf queried.



“Yes, yes, yes,” Armen exclaimed and so was Edward saved.



Finally it was over, Greta looked up into a cloudless sky as Armen’s cock slowly shrank.



“Seventeen minutes and one half,” Herr Lansdorf announced but no one was listening as they were watching the poachers dancing before voting which went through, (the Trapdoor) and which went through to the semi finals in Dresden, and the winner being hung at the Ocktoberfest in Munchen.

There was a warm breeze on the terrace. For late in May, it began to feel like an early summer evening, with the darkness over the golf course and the glow of lights from the French doors of the clubhouse. He had circled the room filled with minor donors to the local museum, one of those end of season fund raising events rushed to get onto the calendar before the summer holidays began to draw everyone away. He played the part, dressed up a little in blazer and slacks, just casual enough not to be making too much of this, in a crowd where a hundred dollar donation allowed someone to show cultural awareness and get advance admission to the current museum opening, a traveling collection of Dutch landscape paintings. In fact he knew no one, and at the end of the evening probably still would not.



Couples and groups clustered and chatted, apparently from long acquaintance, and a few other strollers circulated in the room. Standard advice, for the divorced, was to join in and get out, which seemed like a good idea in theory and another moderately dull evening in practice. The paintings had been intriguing, to see how when individual works were brought together, patterns and standard genre elements became clear, and how simple landscape scenes had a level of other information that only became visible when you knew the code of the time- boats indicating thriving commercial activity, a dog lying under a tree to show fidelity, the tiny brushstrokes hinting at a girl in a Dutch cap, mysteriously on her own errand.



Still, the desire to socialize alternated with a feeling of being an observer in other people’s lives. He stopped again at the bar, to take a second glass of red wine, something to sip and walk with. The bartender, a distracted younger man in a waiter’s tuxedo, poured mid-priced Chilean Merlot-just the thing for this event, not too generic, not too special either. He slipped back into standard business marketing mode without thought- since most people in a crowd circulate in a room counter clockwise, unconsciously keeping their right hand closest to the wall, some long ago memory in case a sword fight breaks out, a good marketer knows to walk clockwise, looking into the faces (and name tags, if there are any) of those approaching.



Walking, sipping, looking, thinking lightly- couples in conversation, a laughing group of several men talking football as they passed, and clusters of older women. Finish the circuit of the room another time, then slip out the door and head home. Looking up from his wine, he noticed something slightly off, and realized it was a person standing still at the edge of the crowd- a taller brunette woman, of some medium age, self contained and observing the room over her drink, not chatting and not moving. Her stillness made her stand out from the crowd, while at the same time she was part of the background. Unlike the strolling doctors’ wives, who had dressed up too much because they were glad of an excuse to have a social evening, or the groups of young women in too-bright party dresses and casual heels, this woman had chosen to dress in some understated but clearly expensive and tasteful way, a sleeveless gray dress and real-looking jewelry, dark high heels, her hair up off her neck.



As she turned, their eyes locked, and he flushed- caught looking, feeling foolish. He turned away, sipping more Merlot as a bit of stage business, turning the corner to finish the lap of the room. A waiter came by with a silver tray, and he had slipped his empty glass among the others and gone out onto the terrace.



Now he was standing at the stone wall on the edge of the tiled patio, facing out over the dark golf course and seeing the twilight blue sky making the trees at the edge of the course look like an inky black, with crisp outlines against the sky. The breeze brought some scent of the landscape and surprisingly made him shiver a bit. Hearing a tap of heels suddenly close by, he turned back toward the building and the fading party vignettes seen through the lit windows. The woman from the room, losing her stillness, had come onto the terrace, still holding her drink- something on the rocks, more than wine, sipping it and looking at him in a very direct way.



He slipped back into business mode, a medium-gauge marketing smile on his lips, and struggled to find the right ironic yet moderately charming thing to say- something about coming here a lot, or something setting the two of them apart from the crowd inside, but the look in her eyes made him stumble. It was a very direct look, not smiling or harsh or argumentative, but more apprising. He had the unconscious feeling of the painting that is observed and analyzed, without creating an immediate emotional response.



“You seem more in your element out here in the dark than you did in the room. Why do you think that is?” He had to pause and think, this was not on anyone’s list of social questions to expect. He saw the immediate choice- to treat this as a real question, or to push things back onto the usual casual social footing of a cocktail party and then wonder later about missed connections and leave this as an anecdote to file away.



“The party was not really a party- not people together, just a shared event, and I wanted to reflect a little, not just circulate. And it seemed like a nice night for the terrace, too.”



“That was only half an answer. What you mean, I think, is that you are more comfortable being on the outside looking in. I wonder about that.”



He let himself look at her more directly now-a little younger than he was, though he was never a good judge of women’s ages or clothing, except in the most obvious ways. Seen close up, she had a cool look, with something sharper in her eyes, watching his answers in a way he was not used to. The gold earrings and necklace looked very solid and real, something with a designer’s name attached. Her dress was a simple shape, but clearly expensive and well tailored, with what looked like careful detailing and an elegant fabric that was a much more complex weave than a simple gray. Without being low cut or obvious, the dress clearly expressed her shape, a slim cleavage and strong legs. With her hair somehow pinned up, her neck seemed long and her head was slightly inclined, as she looked into his eyes.



“You’re more right than you know; I’ve always thought of myself as an observer, someone who does not need to be involved, maybe more does not need to commit to involvement. At the same time, I find myself wanting to be part of things, to be more intensely in the middle of things without over-thinking everything. You seem comfortable as an observer, too, though.”



“It is not the same thing at all, or maybe more accurately it’s the inverse of what you are feeling. Some people find more intensity of feeling in managing the action, rather than in wanting to be drawn into something larger than them. I’ve always known that about myself. I think you know yourself too, but you’ve pushed that to the back of your mind. If you recognized it, you would see that intense feelings require a commitment, at least to the point of turning off your self-editing responses to life.”



She sipped her drink, some sort of whiskey or bourbon by the look of it, ice cubes clinking in the short wide glass. Without his glass of wine, he felt disarmed now, not able to also sip and think, his eyes watching her and the landscape and party forgotten for a moment. The unexpected conversation had taken a strange turn, moving quickly into a territory inside his usual personal defenses. Without saying more, she surprised him by dipping a long forefinger into the drink, idly stirring the ice- then reaching out to place the dripping fingertip near his lips. Without conscious thought, or analysis, or even wondering, he leaned forward a few inches and took it into his lips, tasting the cold and the alcohol, old smooth bourbon it seemed. His lips pursed around it, while his tongue felt the sharp underside of her long nail. Startled by his own action, he drew back, stumbling again for the right thing to say, for having made a move that was not thought out at all.



His eyes met hers, and his start at a smile faded. What he saw was not playful teasing, or a smile, or anger- just analysis. “As I said, some direct the action, and some can find greater intensity in stepping outside who they think they are. I think you barely understand who you are, really.”



Every thought led him to the obvious course, to make a smiling excuse of misunderstanding, to move away from this uneasy encounter, to try to find some more solid social ground under him. At the same time, he had a sense of her investment of thought in creating this moment, and his choice to deal or not with these questions from a stranger. He skipped over in his mind all of the background questions, about who she was and why she asked him these sorts or things or made him think about himself in a new way. Considered that way, it was time to invest in some real response, without trying to plot the social chess game for several moves ahead.



“When I think about myself, I see a false veneer that no one else does. I see past my situation, of being a senior professional in business life, of often being the older person in a group, of seeming to be long settled and pleasant but a bit dull. Inside, I usually feel like the youngest person, the least experienced, the least assured, someone who is riding the wave but is likely to fall off and be discovered as less adequate. My interior life comes from books, and films, and travel, not the experienced leader that people think I am.”



“You’re talking like someone at one of those business leadership seminars we all have to go to- you’re talking with me without recognizing me as real person or as a woman, and without recognizing the sexual component of everyone. You step around the issue, but you accepted my touch and want more but can’t deal with it.” Still serious and not smiling, her eyes widened a bit as she watched his response. “You have every male’s fantasy of sexual situations with those girls at the party, but as a string of passing ideas and nothing that recognizes those inner feelings. You seem to have some potential that way, but only if you can rise above that sense of yourself as unreal somehow.”



Her frankness touched his mind and jarred him out of his social track, moving a casual chat to a higher level. He looked into her eyes again, trying to see her as more than just a stock character in his own play. Details snapped into sharper focus, the curve of her hair pinned back, the beginnings of a few fine lines around the eyes, the texture of her lipstick, the smooth skin of her neck soon hidden by her dress. He realized that her interest seemed to be in his potential, as someone who could be shaped in new ways, not as a suave character in a moonlight seduction scene. Her interest intrigued him in itself, and he found he was excited by a new direction, and by something more- the unexpected chance to improvise a new role without knowing and planning where it would go. As he thought about it, the idea that just reacting in a spontaneous way was such a departure from reality made him feel lame and foolish.



“I think- I know I want to get beyond that. You’re suddenly making the rest of my life seem so restrictive and boxed in, and the idea of some other potential is exciting.” He smiled lightly, a sophisticate responding to a striking woman.



Her eyes flared wide, and she suddenly took a step closer, again stirring her drink with a long finger but quickly bringing it to his lips and pushing it deep, over his tongue, almost making him choke as she pulled it back, hooked around his lower jaw, holding him closer. “This is probably not going to be what you might expect, are you really ready to find out more than you may want about yourself? No words now- I want to see it in your eyes. Make me see that you want this, show me longing.”



Suddenly an actor on a stage, he felt himself pulled hard toward her in an awkward hold, while he made his eyes softer, pleading, trying to express a sudden longing, as he felt his body responding to her touch and her closeness. He kept his eyes wide, trying to put all his feelings there, and to forget the options. Still holding his mouth, she slid her other hand down his chest, over the starched shirt, and startled him with a firm grip around his right nipple, pinching hard and watching him accept it and stifle the gasp. For the first time since she came onto the terrace, a slight smile showed her even teeth, close to his face.



“So- we’ve already established your need, your longing for this, and your ability to give yourself up to a new set of feelings. Now is the real choice- to take a step this way, or to bail out now and never know. If I am directing the way, we are not having a game. I am not some web site fetish person from your late night imagination, with black leather and ridiculous shoes and a mock dungeon, but I will take your mind first and your physical self after that, where I want you to go. I am not a girlfriend and I don’t care to know about the rest of your life, or even your name. I may take you for an hour, or the weekend, or only a few minutes- a lot depends on how well you learn and on the feelings you can give back. When I invest my time, I need to feel your intensity, or the encounter is worth nothing to either of us. If you decide not to step across the line, we won’t see each other again and you will be left with your loss.”



Her finger slipped away, leaving him feeling pierced and then vacant, as she took a step back and crossed her arms over her body. “I want this, this new set of feelings- you can see that already.” He took a deeper breath, to rush on with it. “Yes, I mean, I am ready, I don’t know for what, but I know I need to try, to see if I can be something else. I don’t even know your name, what do I- what should I call you? Ma’am, or Mistress, or- you can see I need more guidance already.”



“No, never those kinds of words! Ma’am is for very old ladies in elevators, Mistress is like a bad movie, and my name is certainly too private for you. When necessary, you may address me as Acacia- it is not a first name, it is the name of a beautiful tree but I like the sound of it. As for you, I will refer to you only as Five.”



“A number? Five?” “Yes- simply because before there were four others. No more questions now. It is time to go. Please empty your pockets here, on the glass topped table, quickly please.”



He started to ask the obvious question, and then caught himself. With a feeling like lining up at the top of a ski slope, he sorted through jacket and pants pockets to make a small pile of his everyday life in objects-the now ever-present Blackberry, wallet, house key with the initialed silver ring, valet parking ticket, handkerchief, a cheap office pen, a creased pair of business cards, some small change. He thought a moment, and then added the sporty watch. Without examining the pile, she swept it into her bag from the chair, some sort of expensive unconstructed leather purse.



“You won’t need these. Your car can stay here for now. We’ll see how you do. Walk with me now, out to my car, don’t say anything.” Concentrating now, he let her lead by a few steps, across the terrace and down a carpeted hall through the clubhouse. Walking behind, he felt somehow lighter without his usual things filling his pockets, and with eyes down he focused on her body, moving under the gray dress. Strong arms, firm calves, heels he had not noticed were quite that high, the dress tailored to skim over her body, hair up showing a long neck. As they went out through the lobby, other party stragglers were gathering and waiting for cars. She crossed the drive to hand her ticket to the red-jacketed valet with a pegboard full of car keys, and he unconsciously placed his hand on her back as they stepped off the curb. She turned suddenly, with a low voice “You will never touch me without my request. I am not some date to you. Last warning.”



He flushed, put his arm down, and stood to the side as she arranged for the car. When the valet pulled up, it was a low two seater, not a make he recognized in the dark, some deep steel blue metallic color. She went immediately to the driver’s side, and tipped the valet as she slid down into the car. Thinking about the right steps, he stood waiting at the other side until the valet came around and opened the door for him, with a dismissive look. Getting in required an awkward drop into the low seat, and folding his body into the small car. She reached across him to push him into the seat and fasten the shoulder belt across his body, then drove quickly down the winding drive and down the road with its stone wall along the club property. A minute or two down the road, she pulled onto the shoulder and stopped, opening the center console and looking through its contents. She turned toward him, serious and not smiling. “Here. Are you still as ready to explore as you were?” She was holding out two leather wrist cuffs that had a well used look. Thick black leather, 3 inches wide, with silver buckles and D rings attached, nothing playful about them. He held them, felt their solidity, and looked up. Her gray eyes watched him as he pushed up his jacket sleeves to buckle the cuffs onto his own wrists, feeling their weight. “Hands up behind the headrest now.” He awkwardly reached up and behind his head, bringing the cuffs together as she reached over to snap the rings together, keeping his arms pinned there. Her breast brushed his body as she reached across, making him think about the sensation. She slipped a fabric blindfold, a leftover from some long flight over his eyes while he said nothing. “Now you are just Five. You have nothing except what you are wearing, you don’t know where we are going, and you have made yourself open to me. Think about what you are.” She checked the blindfold, and then let her hand skim down over his chest and thigh to make the point.



With only his sense of motion, and traces of the spicy scent she seemed to wear, he gave up trying to understand the direction they were taking. Smooth sweeping suburban roads seemed to give way to rougher country back roads, with tighter curves and dips. She switched on the radio, a classical station with little talk and an evening full of what seemed to be string quartets, but kept the volume low so that he had to concentrate to hear it. His body was held by the seat belt, and his shoulders ached now from his arms being held by the cuffs. As he settled into feeling the drive, her hand reached over to touch him from time to time, as a reminder that she had that right- a pat on the thigh, a pinch of his nipple, a touch of his face.



The car swung around a corner, and then stopped short on a bit of gravel. His blindfold was slipped off, but there was little to see- a driveway off a country road, old fieldstone pillars marking the drive, dark trees and the quiet of a country night, maybe the hum of far away truck traffic on a road over the hill they had come down. An old painted wooden sign near the mailbox said ‘Haven’ but it wasn’t clear if this was a name or a place. She turned off the car, leaving only the ticking sound of the hot engine cooling.



“Five, this is where we start. I will direct, you will obey, and perhaps we will both learn new things about ourselves.” She reached behind him to unclip the cuffs from each other but not to remove them, and he brought his arms down slowly, aching muscles stiff. The window on his door whirred down as she touched the controls. “Get out of the car, Five.” He fumbled to find the door handle in the dark, then pushed the door open and awkwardly unfolded himself up and out of the car, closing the door.



“From here on, as long as I know you, do only what I ask but do it quickly and with no question. I will not need to explain myself to you. You have only one right now- to stop, but that is a one-way thing. If you ask to stop, there is no halfway point. I will have you returned to the rest of your life, but you will never see me or come here again- and you will always wonder what might have happened if you had the courage. This is also the last time I will ask -do you understand?”

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