Announcement - Thanks to my savvy, diligent and extraordinary beta-reader, Nancyjean – Both Lord Conqueror of the Realm and Queen of the Realm can now be found on an Ebook format as well. (epub, MOBI, PDF) on the
Xena Library web site. It is listed under the LORD CONQUEROR OF THE
REALM SERIES, so scroll down to the L's.
SPECIAL THANKS : My humble most ardent gratitude to the excellent, most brilliant Beta readers Nancyjean whom I can't thank enough.
Comments, thoughts, questions & feedback : MOST WELCOMED – The more you write me, the quicker I post – I mean it!
Go To Part 1
Queen Gabrielle and Princess Sieglinde did not venture too far from the Great Hall, but occupied one of the chambers close to it and waited. The Queen, foreseeing the severe confrontation about to take place, entrusted her youngest daughter to the hands of her governess and instructed the latter to take Princess Terreis outside to soak in the sun for awhile.
Inside the Great Hall, Sire and Heir stood opposite each other as though they were about to engage in a fierce duel.
"How many of my men did you lose in battle?" the Conqueror asked and her voice, which had a metallic quality to it, sounded like a blade being drawn out of its sheath.
"Four thousand, your Majesty," Princess Athena replied without a smudge of anything resembling a hint of apology.
The Conqueror clasped her hands behind her back, stretching to the fullest extent of her stature. "Four thousand and fifty eight, to be exact."
That was the first yank at the tether of the gradually awakening beast lying in wait inside the Conqueror's progeny. It irritated the Heir that her Sire was being so petty, and unappreciative.
"That is correct, Majesty," she finally managed to bring herself to say without censure.
"Do you not think it essential that I should receive accurate information from the Chief Commander of my forces?" the Conqueror kept irking her firstborn, waiting for the latter to give way and the darkness to surface and present itself.
"Of course it is," Athena replied, her fists beginning to tighten to the point where she thought it best to fold her arms over her chest.
"Do you not think that the lives of fifty eight men who died under your command are important enough - significant enough for you to mention and acknowledge?"
That was the sore spot, the Achilles heel. In her dark frame of mind and with her blood reaching boiling point, pumping in her veins screaming: 'Strike! Strike! Strike!' Princess Athena held back no more and liberated the darkness to rule her faculties.
"Do not accuse me of not caring for your men!" she shouted. "I was there! I saw their blood sprayed on the Nordic snow. I smelled the stench of their bowels being emptied on the field. I had to watch my steps from trampling over their severed limbs. I saw their heads being split in half by Nordic axes as though they were watermelons. Under my command they were my men."
The Conqueror maintained a cool exterior, which only made Athena burn hotter.
"I had to return my childhood friends back to their mother in damned urns and tell her she had lost both her sons in battle. I had to face the lamenting woman that had visited me in the Academy when you hadn't - crying, grief-stricken and inconsolable, Sire ! So do not accuse me of not caring."
"Four thousand and fifty eight dead -" the Conqueror stated, "is unacceptable!"
"We killed fifteen thousand of theirs!" the Heir shouted back.
"You are weak!" the Conqueror spat. It was like throwing a burning torch into a barrel of oil and waiting for it to explode.
Athena breathed fire and emitted smoke from her nostrils. She had to tighten her arms against her body to keep from launching at the Conqueror. If she hadn't been so enraged and so mired with battle-lust, she would have been insulted and hurt.
"I have never been weak," she hissed through clenched teeth. "Under your tyranny, under your favoritism, under your intolerance - it was never possible for me to be weak, not for a single moment in my life."
"Mind your tongue when you speak to me," the Conqueror warned.
But Athena was beyond heeding any warnings and the raging lust in her body made her feel even more powerful.
"I've just said 'favoritism' to you and you do not bother to deny it."
The Conqueror did not reply at first, but she reconsidered and retorted, "Shall I feel sorry for you?!"
"What is it?" Athena's voice continued to roar and her forehead wrinkled with rage.
"What is what?" the Conqueror answered with a question, not following Athena's meaning.
"What is the crime that I've committed against you? What trespass? What offense makes you hate me so much? Was it that I almost killed my mother, your beloved Queen, when I came out of her womb? Because I caused you to feel fear? Because I proved to you that you were vulnerable? Won't you ever forgive me for it in spite of it not being my fault?"
Athena's words seemed to have struck a nerve. The tightening of the Conqueror's jaw was not lost on her firstborn.
Princess Athena stoutly turned to leave the Great Hall despite not being dismissed by the Sovereign.
"Off to your precious Empusa*, I suppose?!" the Conqueror called out from behind her. Just one last shaking of the cage and said Empusa would not stand a prayer, she calculated.
Princess Athena turned sharply to face the Conqueror again. “Tell me, Majesty,” she said, “How is it that you now appear to be your usual uxorious self? Have you done something insidious to Cynna while I was away, thus putting an end to the division between you and mother?”
The Conqueror sneered, “If I were to devise something wonderfully awful to befall that… woman of yours, I wouldn't have waited for you to leave Corinth in order to do it.”
“Well, mother is obviously back in your bed. Was it something you've done to her, perhaps?"
The Conqueror smiled a chilling smile that made the hair on the back of Athena's neck stand, but what came out next from the Conqueror's mouth, Athena could never have anticipated.
"You could never match what I did to your mother , " the Conqueror said, her hand moving to rest over the whip attached to her leather belt, and her gaze momentarily dropping to the general area of her crotch, thus making her meaning perfectly clear and undeniable.
Princess Athena mustered every ounce of control she had in her to arrest her desire to reach for her sword. Her Sire's remark, those ten short words and the crude unmistakable gestures blew in her an eddy of scathing emotions that shrilled for a satisfying outlet, for revenge. The thought of her gentle, beloved mother, whom she had put on a pedestal her entire life and had been very protective of, being a chattel to be used by her Sire's cruel needs and having to hear her Sire crudely vaunt about it, raised in her a near-murderous wrath – never mind what her Sire had told her about the darkness being shared. Equally tormenting was the thought that she could never measure up to her Sire, not as a Ruler, not as a Warrior, and now not even as a Swiver of women.
As the Conqueror watched Athena and her wounded pride storm out of the Great Hall riddled with ire such as she had never seen before, she knew she could not have chosen a better, more affective weapon from her diverse arsenal and she had no doubt in her mind that in order to spite her and to sate the clamoring darkness and the flooding desire, Athena would head straight to Cynna's villa.
The Sovereign sauntered towards the Great Hall's entrance, passing by rows of tall, massive Corinthian pillars that had been carrying the high, arched ceiling for years and the intricate murals that decorated the Hall. She had been heartless and deceiving and she knew that there wasn't any truth in what she had said. Nevertheless, it had to be done and one day, she thought, her firstborn would be grateful for the tuition that her Sire had collected from her.
A few short moments later, she found the Queen and Princess Sieglinde waiting in a nearby chamber.
"My Lord," the Queen curtsied.
"Majesty," Princess Sieglinde, whose face seemed fallen, curtsied as well.
"My Lady," the Conqueror bowed and outstretched her arms when she saw her Queen rushing towards her.
"My Lord, we just saw her Grace striding down the corridor," the Queen said and rested her hands over the Conqueror's, feeling the large hands clasp around her forearms. "She passed us by without so much as a word."
The Conqueror threw a glance over the Queen's shoulder and noticed her daughter-in-law, dejected, leaning her weight against the windowsill, staring aimlessly outside and her grey eyes, like small clouds, raining down mute tears. Sadness and disappointment shaped her countenance. She had been waiting, patiently and dutifully for over three moons to be reunited with the Heir, only to be snubbed and abandoned again.
"Sieglinde." It was the Conqueror calling out to her with the softest and most tender of voices that spoke volumes of profound compassion and of a wish to sooth and comfort.
That simple utterance made the Queen's heart turn into a molten, flaming puddle of love.
It was so warm and tender and so personal that Princess Sieglinde directed her gaze to the Conqueror with a fair amount of shock.
The Conqueror beckoned the Princess over. "Come here, dear lass," she requested, maintaining the same tone of voice.
Such tenderness, coming from a Sovereign so harsh who conquered the world by her will and commanded lions like soldiers in battle, was overpowering and defeating.
The Queen, of course, had been privy to that particular paradox for years, but to Princess Sieglinde it was a novelty, a clandestine side to the Ruler she never could have conceived of.
Compelled by it, Princess Sieglinde could no longer hold back her tears, and as she closed the gap between her and her parents-in-law, they streamed down her face, silently, with decorous dignity.
"Min Herre gave me her word that she would come to me." It was her very first grievance that she had ever voiced since first she set foot in Corinth, and if it weren't for the high expectations followed by the devastating disappointment, she would have succeeded in arresting it as she'd always done before.
"Daughter," the Conqueror beheld the Nordic Princess and shined her face to her, "have my word instead."
"Majesty?" Sieglinde asked, utterly confused by the great honor bestowed upon her by the Conqueror.
The Queen looked up at her Lord adoringly and understood.
"Her Grace will come to you. Go to your chambers and prepare yourself."
A flicker of a smile appeared on Sieglinde's features. She wiped her tears away.
“My Lord's word is the best guarantee there is,” the Queen smiled at the Princess with kindness.
“Thank you, Majesties,” Sieglinde said. “Thank you,” she repeated and curtsied before them and made her way to her own chambers.
The Conqueror gathered the Queen in her arms and planted a kiss on the top of her head.
“Were you very hard on Athena, my Lord?” the Queen asked and rested her temple against her Lord's collarbone.
“As hard as I needed to be, my Lady,” the Conqueror replied.
The Queen almost cringed at the thought.
“Do you trust me?” the Conqueror asked.
“Always,” the Queen replied, unreservedly, and her concerns ebbed away.
The Conqueror lifted her wife up, and the Queen entwined her limbs around the lengthy body she admired.
“Will you spar with me?” the Queen asked, grazing her Lord's neck with her teeth.
“I shall carry you to bed this instance and spar with you for every kiss I wish to lay on your beautiful, most desirable body,” the Conqueror groaned as her Queen feasted on her.
The Queen began to laugh, “I meant sparring with staffs.”
The Conqueror raised an eyebrow as she considered what she thought was her wife's adventurous spirit, “We can use staffs, if you wish.”
The Queen laughed harder. “I meant on the training field. I could use the exercise,” she further explained.
The Ruler understood, but decided to toy with her wife a little longer so to distract her mind off their daughter. "Do you not think it just a bit crass and distasteful to have me take you in public?!"
The Queen wrapped her arms around her Lord's shoulders and feigned a frown. "You understand my meaning perfectly well. You simply enjoy tormenting me , " she said then lowered her voice, "I respectfully and with all humility request that my Lord recompense me."
It was the Conqueror's turn to laugh. "What form of compensation does my Lady deem fair?" She tantalized her wife, knowing full well her wife's wishes just by looking at her.
The Queen decided to deny her Lord the pleasure of hearing her speak her desire out loud, and so she placed a single finger over her Lord's mouth and her other hand she brought meekly between her thighs.
"I shall grant it," the Conqueror stated without hesitation and lowered her wife down to stand on her own feet.
Against her wife's expectation, the Conqueror did not take her upstairs to the comfort and privacy of their own chambers, but gestured to her wife to lean herself against a nearby table, atop which stood a flask of spirits.
Astounded, the Queen's eyes widened as she saw her Lord kneeling in front of her.
"Here?" she exclaimed.
"I cannot wait until we reach our bed," the Conqueror replied, then took the flask, closed her teeth around it, yanked out the cork and blew it out of her mouth.
The Queen chuckled, feeling very flattered. "I say, just like when you were in your early twenties when you first acquired me and took me where ever you desired."
The Conqueror nodded her head and grinned at the memories her Queen called to her mind. She took a large draught of the spirits and washed her mouth with it, rolling the intoxicant over her tongue, which she intended to lay on her wife's tastiest, most delicate morsel, making it even warmer and more tingling.
The Conqueror swallowed hard. “I remember,” she husked.
The Queen felt two hot, large, strong hands slipping under the hems of her dress and sensuously slide up the skin of her calves and thighs.
“What if someone should see us?” the Queen asked then giggled when she saw the Conqueror's head disappearing under her dress as well.
Upon sensing the scorching breath of the Conqueror caressing the apex of her thighs, the Queen spontaneously spread her legs and her own breath was caught in her throat.
“They will think that I am truly a benevolent Ruler,” the Conqueror answered.
The Queen began to laugh again but before long it abruptly turned into short gasps and then into labored breathing when her Lord beneath her dress touched her tongue to the Queen's sensitive, swelling flesh. The long, firm strokes of the agile, sizzling tongue against her sex made the Queen grasp the edge of the table with one hand and her Lord's hooded head with the other and gyrate her sex hard against her Lord's mouth.
Shuddering release came too soon.
Galloping to Cynna's villa, Princess Athena could still hear the Conqueror's hurtful and shaming words ringing in her ears. She drove her horse relentlessly, stabbing the sides of the animal with her heels, making the heads of the people on the streets of Corinth turn, and before they even had a chance to bow before her she had already passed them by.
When she reached her destination, she jumped off her horse and burst into Cynna's villa without warning, making a servant, who was present at the antechamber at the time, drop a jug half-filled with wine that he was carrying. It shattered into small pieces against the floor and the wine spilled like blood, staining the tiles red.
He immediately dropped to the ground onto the fragments of the broken jug scattered all over beneath him. They cut through his trousers and his knees and the wine stung the opened cuts, but he wouldn't dare move.
“Where is Lady Cynna?” Princess Athena growled at him.
Shaking, he pointed at the direction of Cynna's bedchamber.
Upon pushing open the doors, Princess Athena caught sight of her mistress lying in bed, startled out of her daytime slumber.
Cynna rubbed her eyes and for some reason pulled both lapels of her garment together to hide the exposed cleavage. She did not care for being imposed upon and in such a boorish manner.
The curtains were drawn to keep the sunlight out and so her bedchamber was poorly lit. She climbed out of bed and approached Princess Athena.
"A nod is all I get from you?" she complained. "You are gone for three moons and when you return – a tip of the head is all I receive and for all of Corinth to see…" She had a good measure more to spew but her voice trailed off when she suddenly sensed something akin to danger in a form of an inexplicable chill running down her spine.
She looked at the figure that stood in the middle of her bedchamber and saw a beast wearing Athena's skin and glaring at her through Athena's blue eyes. She had no idea a person could look like that, and she became very frightened.
"Forgive me, your Grace," she said when finally her instincts took over.
Princess Athena did not seem impressed by the gesture. "Disrobe,” was all she cared to say.
Cynna was not accustomed to being spoken to in such a manner, and the sting of her pride being pricked was the only thing she could feel.
“Ask me again properly this time, as though I am the woman you love rather than some whore in a tavern,” Cynna said, nearly demanding as she grasped both sides of her hips.
“I will not repeat myself,” the Heir stated and removed her cloak from around her shoulders. She was in no mood to be challenged, especially not after the words she had had with her Sire, and if Cynna knew what was best, she would have known that disobedience on such a day might yield a catastrophic fate if she persisted on aggravating the Heir any further.
But above all else, Cynna felt offended and wronged. “I deserve better than to be treated as nothing more than a mere vessel to have your carnal needs dumped into.”
The Heir glared at her mistress and hanged her cloak on a chair's backrest with misleadingly casual motions, then with a swift, aggressive motion she clasped Cynna's frock and ripped the fabric with amazing ease.
Cynna's exposed breasts were jolted by the force applied, and she immediately sent her arm to cover her bareness. She looked back into the Heir's eyes at first with shock and then in defiance and scorn. She usually considered herself as one who possesses an indomitable spirit, and so she was unprepared to be at the receiving end of such belligerence. Nevertheless, she convinced herself it was a mere momentary slip and chose to ignore the tearing of her garment.
Although, what she considered as a demeaning slight burned her. “You would take anyone if they are female in every feature,” she half accused and half retaliated, as if by doing so it would lessen or dull her humiliation.
The Heir closed the gap between them then struck away the arm that stood in the way between her gaze and the breasts she wished to see.
“You will close your mouth unless I tell you otherwise and you will not cover yourself in my presence again,” the Heir informed in such a fashion that would have been amply clear. “Kneel!” came another order.
Cynna could not believe her ears, and she certainly did not recognize what stood before her, making unspeakable demands of her. Of course she had been told and even warned about the darkness that consumed. However, at the time, she had been more dazzled by the bright lights of riches and high station than she had been concerned by the gloom prospect of the darkness that would one day come to collect the remuneration for it.
“I do not kneel,” Cynna replied.
And in a heartbeat, a whip appeared gripped in the Heir's mighty grasp, making Cynna gasp, and when the Heir sent it flying and wrapping around Cynna's ankles, it was evident that until the moment that the leather made contact with her flesh, the former Amazon did not believe it would.
Once the whip was tightly wrapped around Cynna's ankles, a powerful yank sent the smaller woman tumbling towards the ground. Now she was on her knees as the Heir had ordered. It was only then that she comprehended the grave peril she was in, and how unsafe she really was. A line that she had never believed would be crossed was just crossed, and once it was, there was no telling what other lines could be. She looked at the Heir, with whom she had shared her bed and to no small extent her life, and it felt as though she was truly seeing her now for the first time.
Cynna's eyes leaked tears as she rubbed the right side of her thigh that had suffered a painful strike as it had been forced to the ground. She looked up to gaze at the Heir in order to find the one that had so charmingly courted her when in the Amazon Lands. “Who are you?!” she couldn't help but ask.
“I am the harm that I inflict,” the Heir responded. "Who did you think I was?!" She grabbed the kneeling woman's hair and pushed her head hard backwards.
"You are hurting me," Cynna complained.
Cynna was not behaving according to the Heir's expected design and with the insinuation her Sire had made in regards to her bedding abilities, Cynna's behavior infuriated her beyond measure. "I will hurt you far worse and you will accommodate me as you told me you would, do you remember?" the Heir said. "Now, did I not tell you to shut your mouth?!" the Heir said and stuffed a piece of cloth into Cynna's gagging gullet.
Cynna, choking on the cloth, tried to push it out of her mouth with her tongue, all the while coughing it up her throat.
A powerful slap to Cynna's breast left a glowing, pulsating imprint of the Heir's large palm over it. Cynna managed to push the cloth damming her mouth just in time to release a shrilling scream due to the pain.
"I don't think that I am capable of accommodating you, Athena, please…" she cried.
"You'll do well to remember that I am not your equal and refrain from addressing me by any name other than my honorific," the Royal began to undo her trousers and unbuckle her belt. "How do you think it would look if it were to become known that the Heir to the Throne keeps a mistress whose word cannot be trusted?" she asked, and in her mind she tried to imagine her Sire's measures and proceedings and was resolute in her mind to deliver hers twice as hard.
When Cynna saw the Heir's long, thick leather belt being tested, she cowered, bracing herself. "I am frightened, your Grace," she pleaded.
"As well you should be," the Heir retorted and landed a lash to Cynna's shoulder that reached all the way over her shoulder blade and half way down to the small of her back.
Cynna had never experienced such pain being applied to her body. It felt like her arm had been severed. The lash was so strong that it forced fresh tears out of her eyes despite her wish. She could not bear it any longer, not just the pain, but the position she was put in.
"You are perverse and your needs are depraved," the words rushed out of her mouth before she could sublimate them for she was beyond upset and distraught.
The Heir fumed. She backhanded Cynna's mouth so powerfully that she loosened three teeth and made the gums bleed, sending Cynna's upper body backwards. The back of her head and shoulders were slammed against the floor, making her bent legs become trapped beneath the weight of her body in an awkward position.
Like a raptor, the Heir swooped over her mistress and embedded her fingers into her flesh like talons. "Is that the worth of your love, then? You love only those parts in me that suit your interests?"
"I do love you, only I wish no part in this sickening game," Cynna squirmed, trying desperately yet fruitlessly to free herself from the Heir's hold on her.
"If my tastes were not to your liking, you should have voiced it in a respectable manner and not pass judgment laced with insolence. If you loved me as I am, you would have loved the darkness in me as well even if you were not able to face it and submit to it. Your love for me is severely flawed and it makes me realize that the only thing you love is what being with me provides you with. You love yourself more, and I have no need for such love," the Heir said and pierced the woman ensnared beneath her with her eyes.
The glare was so overbearing and its reach so deep that Cynna felt as though the Heir was able to see the most obscure corners of her soul. She knew in her heart with total certainty that if she were to utter anything other than the absolute truth, the Heir would know it – and so she said nothing, thus confirming the Heir's educated suspicions.
"Quiet at last," the Royal hissed.
"Get off me and leave," Cynna said and in her eyes there was a mixture of fear and determination.
"Gladly, for I cannot stand the touch of you," the Heir sneered, releasing Cynna and wiping her hands on her shirt. It insulted Cynna as she intended.
Princess Athena stood up. Her Sire had been right all along, naturally, she thought.
"But you are very much mistaken. I am not leaving. You are!" the Royal stated.
Cynna got off the floor and covered her nakedness with the torn fabric of her dress. "This is my house!" she claimed.
"This house," the Royal spoke in a deliberate manner so that there wouldn't be any misunderstandings, "is mine – not yours. I've merely resided you in it for my convenience. Being that you are no longer my mistress, you will leave it at once."
Cynna looked around till her eyes rested on her jewelry box. The Heir noticed it and was quick to further state, "You will not take anything here which you haven't brought with you when first you came to Corinth ."
With a pleading expression about her, designed to elicit compassion, Cynna requested, "Will you at least allow me to leave after sunset, for I do not wish for my neighbors to see me in my shame."
"You do not have to concern yourself with gossip," the Heir replied, "for you are hereby forbidden to ever setting foot in Corinth. You will never face your Corinthian neighbors again."
Inwardly resenting what she perceived as the Heir's vindictiveness, Cynna claimed, "It is all the work of Princess Sieglinde. She managed to poison your mind against me."
Of all the invective that the Heir sustained that day, Cynna's last venomous sentence infuriated her the most.
"You are not worthy of cleaning her Grace's chamber-pot and I swear to you… If you should ever speak ill of her Grace again, I shall cut your tongue out."
By the look on the Heir's countenance, Cynna believed the true intent of the Heir's vow to her like she had never believed anything else before in her life.
The Heir pointed at the direction of the door.
Cynna turned her back to her former lover and went to the chest at the foot of the bed. She retrieved her Amazon attire, which she had worn when she had arrived at Corinth. She then quickly disrobed and wore it again, thinking that the garment symbolized her brilliant failure. The conversation she had had with the Shamaness when Princess Athena had been on her way back from the Nordic Lands taunted her and at that moment she wished she had listened. It was an end of an era, she thought, and the first apprehension of what that meant began to fester inside her.
Silently, she looked at Princess Athena one last time, as if expecting the Conqueror's Successor to change her verdict but knowing to her very core that there was no going back. She followed the direction to which the Royal was pointing and that was how she left her luxurious life behind.
As she walked the streets of Corinth, she kept her head down in order to avoid the looks she felt on her person. Her former neighbors, who had once dined at her table and had partaken of her banquets, followed her walk of shame. By the way she was dressed, they were quick to surmise her fall from grace and her loss of the Conqueror's Heir's favors. Some pointed at her, some whispered amongst themselves, other laughed at her. Very few things in life are as satisfying as seeing your neighbor's plight, for it reminds one of his own good fortune which ought to be appreciated. It did not take long for Cynna's misfortune to become the talk of the day under the Corinthian sky.
After awhile, when Princess Athena concluded sufficient time had gone by for Cynna to be far enough away, she left the empty villa and made her way back to the palace.
When Princess Athena reached Princess Sieglinde's chambers, her heart, mind and soul were as black as coals, having experienced one disappointment too many from the two main protagonists in her life: her Sire, whom she resented herself for not being able to but admire for her supreme judgment of character; and her former mistress, whom she expected unconditional acceptance from – she wanted both to love her, as much as she hated to admit it to herself.
This was not how she had imagined her return home from battle would be. In her mind's eye, she had seen the Sovereign who sired her being proud of her and the woman whom she had paid a steep price for, being loving.
All that had transpired that day made the downtrodden beast inside her even more vicious, more hateful and hungrier for that pound of flesh it had been denied.
The shields around the Heir's heart were raised high, and the heart itself grew colder and stonier. The weakest needed to be made toughest - her Sire had always told her. The battlefield did not take kindly to weakness and it certainly did not spare those who were weak. Life was a battlefield, she thought as she placed her hand over the door handle. Mercy had no business on the battlefield, and as she had been taught, it would always be the weakest that would pay most dearly. Her mind immediately turned to the meek woman whom she knew waited for her on the other side of the door.
Sieglinde, her would-be victim, would be all alone, no doubt, without her ladies in waiting, vulnerable without anyone who would come to her rescue, for no one would defy the Conqueror's Heir or dare stand in the way of her will.
And what could this wife of hers, whom she had not chosen, possibly know about lust, about dark and low desires, Athena thought. Her wife was a proper lady, a very young, proper lady with proper education, and proper upbringing, who knitted and sang and adored children. A lass, really, who was bred to marry and bear children without any guidance as to the ways of the world, and their consummation night, if anything, had been a perfect example of it.
Till her last moment on earth, she knew, she would never forget the look on Sieglinde's face and her whimpers when she had carnal knowledge of her, at her Sire's command. Sieglinde clearly had neither a concept of what the activity entailed nor of the pleasures that are given and taken. A virgin - she had been a bloody virgin, but more than that, unlike Cynna, who growing up as an Amazon had been at least well-informed, Sieglinde had been ridiculously naïve and ignorant, and she'd suffered more for it. It made the beast inside her roar, gloating.
Athena couldn't help but wonder whether her wife had ever been aroused, had ever felt that hot, throbbing pulse beating in her loins and the overwhelming urge to rub it or have it rubbed to the point of release. Did she at all possess sexual proclivities of any kind? The very thought of her wife's seemingly non-existing appetites of the flesh almost made the Heir laugh.
She pushed the door in ever so slightly, making it squeak on its hinges and making her arranged-marriage wife become aware of her presence and fearfully anticipate it. The Heir lingered for just a while longer, finding it almost odd that Sieglinde hadn't come to the door to greet her yet.
The russet glow of the candlelight and the low burning hearth were the first to greet her as she took the first step into Sieglinde's bedchamber.
The sight before her, which almost seemed as though it had been meticulously arranged solely for her benefit, took her breath away even more than it baffled her.
The Nordic wife, wearing only the traditional cap over her head and a demure expression about her countenance and nothing more, was kneeling on the floor and resting her backside on her heels. Had she not been naked, Athena would have thought it to be the chastest exhibition she had ever seen.
Rather than barge in, as was her initial intention, she stepped inside slowly and consciously, like she revered the display. She saw a shiver ripple down from Sieglinde's shoulders and down her spine. Nevertheless, Sieglinde kept her eyes down.
It was the very first time, the Realm's Princess realized, that she had seen her wife's naked form. That night when she had taken her, she had not cared to expose her wife's figure, much less examine it. But now she was riveted by the exquisite marvel that was her wife's nakedness. The smooth skin that was as pale as the moon extended not just to Sieglinde's face but as far as her fingers and toes. Two small, perfect pink domes decorated the apex of the small and firm, flawlessly shaped breasts.
“Lift up your head and look at me,” the Heir ordered as she towered above her wife.
Sieglinde lifted up her head, and her gaze following upwards, and she could barely meet Athena's gaze.
Although Athena did not realize it yet, her wife was as appreciative of the sturdy, muscular physique and the rough-hewn features.
In her wife's eyes, Athena discovered something she did not expect. Sieglinde's eyes were smoky, with silver-grey mist crawling in them, which called to mind the silver-grey fog she had seen at the Nordic Lands – a low cloud that had descended down from the sky and hovered over the turquoise water which had reflected its image, before the cloud evaporated into a white fog that crept towards the mountains' side and slithered stealthily near-morbidly alongside it, blanketing the snow-covered trees.
These mysterious, modest, Nordic eyes held in them something intangible that Athena had never seen before and the raging boil in her quieted some.
“Take your cap off and let down your hair,” the Heir's commanding voice instructed. “I wish to see.”
Princess Sieglinde's hands reached up and behind her white cap. She untied the garment's laces under the bulge of her hair. Her lean fingers worked fastidiously, and quickly enough the tie was loose. Mindfully, she pulled her cap back and removed it completely, discarding it with a hasty hand on the floor. As soon as the cap was removed, countless strands of lush golden hair, so smooth that it untwined out the several braids all by itself unassisted, cascaded down the curvaceous tokens of Sieglinde's body like brooks of gold down hills and valleys.
Athena observed, fascinated at the scores of golden streams of perfect hair, gushing like the many waterfalls she had seen in the Nordic Lands, over shoulders, breasts, waist and stomach, pooling down at the triangle between the pressed-together creamy thighs like they were holding a precious, delectable secret.
Princess Athena beheld her wife with a watering mouth. Mindlessly, she began to walk around the demurely kneeling woman and inwardly admired the staggering sight, revealing nothing of her sentiments upon her features. She wondered what had prompted her wife to present herself in such a pleasing and suitable fashion.
The alluring, shining, gilded hair reached all the way down and over Sieglinde's buttocks. Athena believed that her wife had probably never touched a blade to her hair since birth. In the dancing firelight it seemed to glitter with many shades of bright gold and Athena could do nothing but swallow.
The beast inside the Heir was alert and primed to be unleashed on the delicious prize at its feet. It licked its canines, slobbering, ready to take the first bite, tear the succulent flesh offered, suck on the bone and consume the soul.
But Athena held it at bay. She looked down at her wife, who seemed ready and willing to accommodate her, and felt so utterly overawed.
“I cannot,” she said in a voice that sounded somewhere between a whisper and a hiss, “I cannot do this to you.”
“Min Herre?” Sieglinde whispered back confused, hoping she misunderstood, resolute in her mind not to weep.
It took every drop of power she had in her, to deny the darkness that eviscerated her insides trying to claw its way out of it bindings. She suspected she hadn't strained herself that much, not even on the battlefield facing thousands, for never before in all her life had she ever desired to take, to have and to conquer as she desired at that moment. “ I cannot cause you any more pain than I already have,” the Heir said, and it sounded as if her words were spoken halfheartedly. She nearly wished she'd have done the less than decent thing and savaged her savory, pure wife as every drop of blood in her body wanted.
Sieglinde, whose lips and chin began to quiver slightly, moved to stand on her knees. Hesitantly, she reached for the Heir's belt and took the rolled whip attached to it in her hands, raising it in front of Athena as if on a platter and said, “Please, Min Herre… I deserve better than your pity.”
Athena's eyes briefly widened in disbelief, but maintained her composure. “It is not pity. I am trying to protect you,” she said with a flat, rigid tone of voice for it was getting harder to control the beast she had no desire to control.
But her wife's next word sobered her with surprise.
“Why?!” Sieglinde asked. “I have earned it. I have earned the right to your lust, Min Herre." It wasn't a demand, even if her tone of voice sounded like it. Sieglinde stated what she believed was truth, undeniable.
“You do not appreciate the state that we are in. Do not tempt me for I have no will to hold what's inside me.”
“Please, Min Herre,” Sieglinde would not give in.
“You do not know what you are asking, wife!” Athena huffed, at the end of her sinews.
“Perhaps not,” Sieglinde answered and raised the whip in her hands even higher, “But I want it.”
Athena took the whip from Sieglinde's hands and let out a long, heavy breath.
* Empusa – is a she-demon from the Greek mythology with a single leg and a hoofed foot of a donkey, who seduced men in order to feed on their flesh and blood.
Return to the Academy