A NEW LIFE by Ayumie


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PART 1 -- PART 2 -- PART 3


Chapter I (Izumi)

It is humiliating yet exciting, this journey these 17 of us are forced to make. Humiliating because of its purpose, the mere knowledge of where we are going and what we'll be there. Children of mighty Lords or even kings each of us, we are going to the imperial court to ensure our parents loyalty. Hostages, that's what we are.

My siblings are chattering beside me, pointing at everything that catches their interest. Yuugo is too young to really understand that we won't go back soon and Serika... I don't think she really minds. She'd have been married soon anyway so going to court just means that she'll be able to chose among more men. That is, if the Lord Emperor allows her to choose and not just gives her to one of his allies out of political reasons.

I sigh softly. If my uncle just hadn't housed those traitorous Lords. It just HAD to look as if he was part of that conspiracy when they were arrested under our roof. Well, now it is too late. Looking up into the blue sky, I can feel a tiny droplet of sweat trickle down my temple. It is so warm!! Though we've long since stopped wearing the heavy furs of our homeland we still suffer from the heat. And in these hideous temperatures we'll have to spend the next few years?

All of a sudden the soldiers in front of me start to cheer and yell. What is it? It takes quite some time until I discover the reason for their extraordinary behavior but when I finally do my heart skips a beat. Still far away, at the horizon, the outline of a city can be seen, high towers of white marble glowing brightly under the merciless sun.

The leader of the squad that escorts us tells us in elaborate Latin that if things go well we'll arrive in the capital before dawn. Our journey has finally come to an end. I can see the joy in the soldier's faces and yet feel nothing but fear. These men are coming home whereas I and the mine face an insecure destiny.

The sun already casts red shadows when we pass the city's main gate, the otherwise white buildings shimmering rosy. My sister claps her hands at this pretty picture and seems to be thoroughly contend with being here in this strange country, far away from everything we know. I'm probably being unfair but I'm a little mad at her for being so easily impressed. Hoards of people are lining the streets, gaping at the spectacle we barbarian hostages doubtlessly provide. I sigh in relief when the bronze gates of the palace finally close behind us. It is quiet in here, peaceful. Extensive gardens seem to stretch into infinity, their lush green only interrupted by the white complex of the palace buildings.

A few minutes later we reach the stable area and are finally allowed to get off our horses. Our leader is just about to tell us what to do next when loud yells and applause interrupt him mid-sentence, a group of preciously clad young men and women galloping into the place. The soldiers around us immediately drop to their knees and many of my companions follow their example, probably recognizing someone important among these guys. Only I and two or three of the others remain standing, unwilling to show respect to someone we aren't even able to identify.

The white horse of on of the riders is snorting nervously, throwing its head back even as it is rearing furiously. A beautiful animal. Looking up at its rider I find that the man is grinning at me. I feel a faint blush spread over my cheeks at that blatant staring. His long, silvery hair is fanning after him, his narrow blue eyes glinting with amusement. Grabbing the reins in one hand he points at me with the tip of his riding crop, shouting something in a language I don't understand. The others around him cheer and applaud then the whole group turns and disappears into the woods to out right.

By now I'm trembling with fury - those bastards were making fun of me!! In the next seconds strong arms seize me and separate me from my companions, dragging me away despite my protests. What is going on? I just can't understand what's going on! Why can't I stay with the others? I catch a last glimpse at my siblings as they are lead into the opposite direction, shouting at them to not worry about me. I'll be fine. I'm sure I will be...

They bring me into a large suite - suite? I'm not sure if this is the right term for these rooms. It looks more like a ... temple? At least it has the dimensions of a temple, the ceiling twice a man's height. Gold and ivory adorn the walls and pillars, gemstones the rare tropical woods the furniture. The mere splendor is enough to dazzle me.

But... these aren't rooms they would give to a simple hostage, are they? Royal blood or not, in the capital I'm just one of many lesser Lords in the Emperor's shadow, not even worth told what is going on. Hell not even my uncle, the king, has rooms like these. They have to belong to someone really important. The Emperor? I almost laugh at that. Sure, I'm in the emperor's chambers.

In the next second a group of chattering servant girls enters the room, bringing me food and fresh clothes and soap and towels to wash myself. One of them looks as if she wanted to talk to me but the others immediately shoo her away, leaving my questions unanswered.

Confused by their behavior I decide to wash myself before eating. Wash - but where? Insecure I look around. There are several door, a few of them conveniently open. Looking through the closest one I find another room of gigantic dimensions just that this one is obviously a bedroom. I shudder as I Look at the big, silk-covered bed a strange sense of foreboding coming over me. Turning I quickly close the door behind me. I don't like this.

Fortunately the next room I look into is the bathroom with something that resembles a small lake in it. Artificial and real plants make the rest of the room look like a jungle, the water lilies in the pool adding to the impression of lush vegetation. Should I... should I wash in there? Should I...? Could I...?

Well, they brought me here and they gave me soap and towels so obviously they want me to wash and since this is the bathroom it's natural to use it, isn't it? Determined I pull my dusty clothes off and step into the lake-like pool, sighing happily as I feel the warm water relax my muscles.

I don't know how long I stay in here but when I'm finally ready to get out I feel like I've just been reborn. Not even the clothes they have given me - short, flimsy garments that make me blush at the mere thought of wearing them - bother me. Returning into the other room I find that the food is still standing on the table, a huge goblet of wine standing right beside it. Wine? I sniff distastefully, disliking the prospect of having nothing else to drink. Strong liquid always goes to my head. Nevertheless I sit down and eat, telling myself that I'll need my strength. After drinking even half of the wine I feel dizzy, my head staring to spin. Oh no....

A small sound from the other end of the room alerts my attention and I turn my head just in time to see a small, hidden door swing open. I immediately try to stand up but fail miserably, collapsing back into the chair. Blinking I look at the intruder, recognizing the guy from before. He's dressed differently now, almost plain though his high position is still more than obvious. What is HE doing here? Are these his rooms? Am I here at his order? My head hurts...

Trying to hide my weakness I look right into his face. His skin is pale, almost white, his eyes of a stunningly vivid blue that reminds me of a winter sky. His long white hair is falling down his back, a few strands tumbling over his shoulders. What am I thinking? What am I...? He's smiling at me, drawing closer. I can feel my heart beating faster though I can't tell why. Maybe it's the way he's looking at me. He's moving faster now, predatory. But what does he want? He's close to me, very close and still I feel unable to move, to react.

"What is your name?"

"Why.. why are you asking this?"

"What, is it so uncommon that I want to know my future bedmates name?"

B... bedmate? But that's impossible! I'm a man - doesn't he see that I'm a man? In the next second he covers my lips with his own, stealing a kiss. Unable to suppress a small scream I scramble back, finally breaking from this almost trance. NO!!

I must have said this out aloud because he chuckles softly and comes after me, an amused smile on his face. So he thinks me and my protests amusing? A rush of adrenaline gives me the strength to stand upright and square my shoulders. Glaring at him I summon all of my authority.

"Bring me into my own quarters! You have no right to keep me here! I'm the emperor's hostage and he'll surely not be pleased if he hears that one of his noblemen has molested me!"

"The emperor, little angel? He's a cold man that cares little for his hostages except that they are alive. You wouldn't want to meet him. No, you're much better off with me."

By now I'm trapped between him and the wall, his lips mere inches from mine. I... I really don't wanna... In the next second I find myself in his arms, his mouth hungry on my skin. That's ... sick. The wine is clouding my mind, making me unable to think coherently. I feel strangely weak-willed as he simply scoops me into his arms and carries me into the bedroom. No, I don't want to... I'm sure that I don't want to and yet I find myself unable to really fight him. His lips, his hands work some kind of magic on me, lulling my will and making my body feel heavy. No...

Hands are tearing at my clothes, pulling them off so that I'm lying naked under him. There's no way out of here? I turn my head away as he spreads my legs, not wanting to see what will come next. The adrenaline is wearing off, leaving me burnt out, without defenses.

He's touching me at places I don't even want to name, doing things I've never heard of before.. Feeling disgusted and faintly sick I try not to wince as he slowly pushes into me, pretending that I'm not even here. No, I don't even need to pretend it - I'm too far away be a part of this. Somewhere in the back of my mind a door has been closed and I'm behind it, drowning in a sea of oblivion. The alcohol together with my general state of exhaustion is enough to numb me and that's all I'm asking for. And yet sensations are battering against the walls around me forcing me to retreat even further. No, I don't want to feel that pain. Away... I want to get away...

I can hear myself whimper, hear his voice in my ear as he whispers endearments to me. Lies - all lies. I hate... I HATE....!!! Away. From one second to the other everything turns black.

My head is aching. Sunlight - too bright! Clenching my teeth I force myself to lie perfectly still, eyes pressed tightly shut. The mattress shifts as somebody sits down beside me, sending new waves of sickness through my agonized body. Is it... him? Now I open my eyes after all. A boy is sitting right beside me, a merry smile on his face. No tread....

He offers me a mug with a disgustingly smelling liquid inside of it.

"Here, drink this. It'll make you feel better."

Eyeing him suspiciously I drink down what he has offered me. I'd do anything to feel better. The boy is still smiling. Something sharp is digging into my palm, hurting me. What the...? Looking down I find that there's a necklace wound around my wrist, the walnut sized rubies that form the pendant cutting into my open palm. This... I don't even want to think about how much this is worth. I stare wide eyed at the shining jewels, unable to understand why they are here. The boy must have noticed my gaze for his smile broadens.

"They are wonderful, aren't they? Oh, you must have done very well yesterday night if he gives you something like this! And me, of course."


"Yes, me. May I introduce myself? Katsumi Shibuya - your personal slave. I guess he figured you'd need one now that you're officially his lover."

Lover? No. I stare down at the jewels in my hand, seeing my reflection in them. Hateful. With something between a sob and a scream I throw that disgusting piece of jewelry from me. Well, if he thinks that it will be so easy he's mistaken! I ain't a helpless slave like this poor creature, I'm a royal hostage and as such I have rights! And those jewels - what does he think I am? A whore?! Yesterday I was weak and drunk but today he'll learn my strength. I definitely won't be his lover!! He... hell, I don't even know who he is!

The slave boy - Katsumi - looks at me, fear and confusion in his eyes.

"M.. master? What are you doing? The Emperor's present...."

I can do nothing but stare at him.

"The... Emperor?"

"Why, of course. You didn't know? The man you spent last night with is Nanjo Koji the Lord Emperor of Serion."

Unable to sit upright any longer I sink back onto the bed. The Emperor... The boy is talking to me again but I just wave him away, unable to listen to him just now. The Emperor. I'm lost. For a moment I feel just as weak-willed as last night but then I vigorously push those thoughts away. He might be the Emperor but what right does he have to do this to me?! When my uncle sent me here he was guaranteed my safety and well-being so how dare that bastard force me into his bed?!

But it would be no use telling this my new slave, would it? He wouldn't understand how I can even think about rejecting the emperor's affection. Or should I say the emperor's lust?

Regaining some of my composure I order Katsumi to get me some new clothes - preferably decent ones - and something to eat. Within ten minutes I have everything I wanted and am finally able to ask some more questions.

Yes, I have spent the night in the Emperor's private chambers but I wont stay here but move into a suite next to them. Yes, everybody knows what 'honor has been bestowed upon me' and the other hostages are without exception well. No, I can't go and see them immediately for the Lord Emperor has not yet given me permission to leave these rooms - in fact he specially ordered me to be left alone today so that I'd be rested in the evening. He also said that he'd come back then to see how I'm doing. See how I'm doing - as if he'd care! Well, at least this time I know what will happen and I have time to think about what to do about it. There has to be a way to stop this man!

I'm trembling with nervousness long before dusk, the plain, white tunic I've chosen for my meeting with the Emperor already damp with sweat. But I am not afraid! I am not afraid...

Katsumi has long since left me alone, not wanting to get into the way when the Emperor arrives. Well, probably it's better like this. After he has tried to persuade me to be happy about this whole thing for more than five hours my nerves are starting to wear thin. Is it so hard to understand that I just don't WANT to become his lover?

Footsteps in the hallway announce the arrival of my unwelcome host so I quickly sit down at a desk, forcing myself into a semblance of calmness. He mustn't notice just how upset I really am! Once again he makes a surprising entry, using the front door instead of the small one that joins our suites.

He's dressed in blue today, his long hair braided and wound around his head, disappearing under a circlet, the only outward sign for his position. He's looking at me, a small smile playing over his lips. My enemy.

"Are you contend with your new rooms, little angel? Or would you rather live with me in my own chambers?"

Forcing myself to stay calm I pick up the necklace and hand it to him.

"I believe you've forgotten something this morning."

"You didn't like my present, then?"

He throws the necklace away without even looking at it.

"Well, in this case I'll get you something else. What would you like, hmm?"

"I want nothing from you! I ain't a whore that gets paid for its services!! Bring me back to the others - I don't wanna be here!"

For a second he just stares at me then he actually starts to laugh. Bastard!!

"I think you don't understand your position, little angel - what you want is no consider. You've been mine ever since you first set foot on Serionan ground. I could call in the guards and have them hold you down while I have my way with you. I could give you an aphrodisiac so potent that you'd be begging me to touch you. But... this is not what I want."

Slowly, step by step he is coming closer, reaching out to touch me. I can feel his hands on my hips, on my buttocks.

"I want us to be lovers. I want you to be there when I come into my bedroom in the evening. I want you to feel pleasure when I touch you. Little angel...."

No, I won't let myself be lulled again!! Giving a small, furious scream I bolt, trying to hit him. He catches my fist midair, an almost feral expression in his face. For the split of a second he looks like a wild animal. Shit, I never realized!! He's strong, very strong. He holds my wrist in an iron grip, hurling me around so that I'm tumbling towards the bedroom. Oh god...! Shoving me through the door he forces me down onto the bed, efficiently pinning my wrists above my head. He'll rape me again, won't he? Quickly loosening the sash he uses to hold his robe around his waist he ties my hands together before I can as much as blink. Once I realize what he has done I struggle furiously but I already know that it's no use. He has me.

However, now that I'm not able to fight him any longer he doesn't seem to be in a hurry, languidly pulling at the ribbon that holds his hair up. Seconds later the smooth white stuff is falling down his shoulders and into his face, partly shielding it from my sight. That's good - I don't want to look at him.

He seems almost dreamy as he undoes the brooch that holds the widths of cloth over my shoulder, baring my chest. I can feel tears sting in my eyes. Why is he doing this to me? I'm sure there are hundreds of young nobleman throughout the whole country who'd die to take my place right now. So why??

I don't struggle as he pulls off my tunic completely, trying to gather the sorry remnants of my dignity.

"I know what you are thinking now, little angel but be assured that I won't hurt you. Yesterday I was very ... impatient. I wanted to savor your beauty, to make you mine, so I did it too fast. It needn't always be like that, you know?"

Not always like this? What is he talking about? Of course it is always like this. My nursemaid often told me that there is always pain when a man lies with a woman and since we're both man it is only logical that it hurts even more. And yet his hands on my body feels strangely pleasant.

Despite my minds furious protests I let my eyes slit close and I find myself relaxing. What is he doing? This feels almost like a massage. His hands roam over my chest, fingertips brushing briefly over my nipples. Wha...?! For the split of a second a strange sensations surges through me and I find myself shuddering. What's this? I wait for a few seconds but when nothing happens I decide that it was probably just belated shock. Nothing I have to worry about.

"I'm wondering little angel, have you ever touched yourself?"

Eyes snapping open I give a small, shocked gasp, vehemently shaking my head. Of course not!! Touching oneself isn't right - everybody says that. No decent person would do any such thing! He chuckles softly, his hand resting briefly on my groin.

"So pure, little angel. Completely innocent to the ways of pleasure. But I'll show you, I'll show you..."

Frowning I try to make sense of what he is saying. Pleasure? How demented can a person be to take pleasure in such an act? I'm sure that my uncle would rather see me dead than in the arms of another man! His hands have taken up their occupation with my body again, languidly caressing my chest. And then there's that feeling again. His fingers have found my nipples, rubbing them in circular motions. I hold my breath, waiting for the feelings to subside but they just won't go away!! My nipples are tightening into hard, little kernels, almost aching with the sensations he's forcing onto them. Surprised I notice that I'm breathing faster, sweat oozing from every pore of my body. What is going on? I gasp helplessly and strain against my bonds, trying to escape his questing fingers. It's no use. Despite my furious protests he continues his tormenting, teasing touches, wringing more moans from me.

From one second to the other his hands are gone and I sob with relief, hoping beyond sensibility that it is already over. But he won't stop without having his needs fulfilled, will he?

He puts his hands to either side of my face, forcing me to look into his eyes.

"You are still afraid, little angel but you are also starting to get ... aroused. That's good."

His mouth is so very close to my, his hot breath fanning over my skin. Feeling that my lips want to part, to invite him in, I clamp my mouth tightly shut, denying that I feel anything but apprehension. DO I feel anything but apprehension?

For the first time since I've arrived I start to analyze my feelings and what I find almost has me panicking. I feel pleasure. That hot, burning sensation that has been spreading throughout my whole body for the last 15 minutes is pleasure! Not any kind of pleasure I've ever experienced but doubtlessly here and overwhelming.

I wince as his hot mouth descends upon my neck and he starts to suck and nibble at my throbbing pulse, probably leaving red marks on my skin. Lovebites. Tomorrow everybody will see what he's done to me. How can I hate this and want more at the same time? It's just plain wrong what I'm feeling! Perverted... And yet my treacherous body is arching against him, demanding something he's all too willing to give. Oh god, I want more!!

I groan as one of his hands moves down to cup my rising member, disgusted at the thought of having somebody touching me where I hardly dare to wash myself. A strange, tight feeling is spreading through my groin, making me shift my hips against him in an hopeless attempt to find some ease. His grip tightens around me, making me want to scream.

Having concentrated on what is happening down there, I've failed to notice what his mouth has been doing so that I'm pretty surprised to find that it has already reached the area below my navel. What is he DOING there? He doesn't want to...? No, he couldn't - he wouldn't! That's so sick. I press my eyes tightly shut praying that my suspicion will prove wrong. Of course it doesn't. I scream as his soft lips touch the tip of my penis, overwhelming pleasure and mind-numbing fear mingling to a desperate outburst. I throw my head back into the pillow, my body as taut as a bowstring. One more second. One more second and...

He has pulled back because I can as much as blink, leaving me in a state of mindless distress. Too out of breath to even talk all I can do is produce small, frantic moans in the back of my throat, wordlessly begging him to release me. He smiles softly, comfortingly petting my cheeks. He won't let me come now, will he? Halfheartedly straining against my bonds I watch him as he takes off his tunic and boots, reluctantly giving into my curiosity. He's absolutely gorgeous. Strong muscles flex under his flawless, white skin, his whole body quivering with tension. I gulp nervously, as he slowly takes his pants off. Not daring to look down any further I fix my eyes on his broad chest though this isn't exactly safe territory either. His nipples are hard already, pink little rosebuds waiting to blossom. I almost laugh at this metaphor. I've really lost it, haven't I? Finally I look down after all, my eyes widening as I see his sex. I haven't ever been so scared. That... that was in me yesterday - will be in me soon again. He's much bigger than me and so very hard. His hand is stroking my cheek again, feeling heavenly cool against my burning skin.

"There little angel, it isn't that bad, is it? You don't dislike my body, that much I can see. Just relax now - I promise I won't hurt you."

Yes, he will but I don't care. I just want him to get down there again, to finish what he has started so effortlessly. He seems to have finally heard my silent pleas for he slowly slides down my body, my head sinking down in anticipation. But what is he doing? This is too low, too low! My face reddens even more as I realize what he is doing. His moist lips have just ignored my weeping member and sneaked between my buttocks, lapping at the small, puckered opening they find there.

That... that's too much. For the first time I really start to struggle, furiously tearing at my bonds. No. Nonononono!!! Trying to jerk my hips up and away I find that he has a secure hold on them, keeping them down with barely an effort. And yet his tongue on me - in me - is starting to feel good ... so very good ...

Tears of shame are running down my cheeks even as I start to let go, my body melting against him. This pleasure is different from the last, softer and gentler and enveloping me and feeling so sweet.

Though I am still crying I don't fight any longer - my body wouldn't obey me anyway. When his soft mouth if replaced by probing fingers I don't even wince. Now the pain will come. Shuddering I feel him press into me, his fingers coated with some slick, cool substance. His gentleness astounds me. It... doesn't hurt - why doesn't it hurt?!

Feeling that I'm tensing up again he places a hand onto my stomach, soothing the trembling muscles. About a minute later he has positioned himself against me, the tip of his member nudging firmly against my opening. He smiles as he pushes forward, his eyes closing in rapture. To him this surely feels great. He's big and hard and filling me and making me feel all stuffed. I don't understand how anyone can do this willingly.

He has started to move, languidly thrusting in and out of me. All of a sudden he hits something inside of me, sending a hurricane of sensations through me. My body twists and arches desperately, trying to get him to move faster, to feel that again and again and again. Through half closed eyes I watch his face as he pounds into me, seeing his bliss, his ecstasy and knowing that it can't be anything compared to what I'm feeling. Yet it makes me proud to think that it is me who entices these reactions. A sense of power surges through me, sweetening the pleasure he forces onto me. Mmmmh...

Soon our bodies are frantically moving against each other, each of his thrusts making me scream. He has closed his hand around me penis, rendering me completely helpless. Precum jets from the tip of my member, making the tight tunnel of his fingers slippery. I can feel that everything in me is trying to achieve an ultimate goal, straining to reach a special point though what this is I can't tell. I only know that I've got to get there - as soon as possible.

I want to throw my arms around him and pull him even deeper into me but they're still tied firmly together. My heartbeat is thundering in my ears and again only one sentence is circling through my mind. One more second.

His shoves are getting harder yet, rougher, and I welcome it. At one particularly deep thrust I give a wailing scream and for a second my vision blurs. The world consists of nothing but feelings, of nothing but MY feelings. This is pure bliss, pure ecstasy. For a few seconds the tears that are staining my cheeks are happy tears and I'm infinitely grateful for him to have take me here. This is paradise. My worries seem far away, my life that of another person. He is the only thing that still connects me to reality and for a moment I almost love even him. Almost.

Then I'm hurled back into my body, away from that blissful world I've so recently discovered. No, I want back! I can't move, can't even open my eyes. And why would I open them? I'm so tired. Warm arms settle around my waist and eventually I fall asleep.

The sun is shining onto my face. Mmmh, warm. Stretching contently I pull the sheet tighter around me, slowly opening my eyes. From one second to the other realization hits, shattering my peaceful, little world. Pictures are dancing in front of my eyes. He has done it to me again. I shudder convulsively as I remember some details of last night, misery welling up inside me. He has... he has... Why...? Why is he doing this to me?! Tears are gathering in my eyes, starting to run down my cheeks. I do nothing to stop them. After more than two days of holding back I finally give into my despair and cry. Yesterday I would have been mad at myself for such weakness. Yesterday there was still hope. I curl into a tight ball, pulling my legs against my chest in a fetal position. I can't help but sob even as I'm screaming into the pillow though I know that nothing I can do will make this pain go away. Nothing.

I flinch as a soft hand touches my shoulder. Katsumi? Yes, it is him though the usual merry smile on his face has been replaced by a worried frown. When he sees my reddened eyes and tear-streaked cheeks he bites his lower lip. I wish he'd just go away! He puts his arms around me in an obvious attempt to comfort me but I just turn my head away. I don't want his pity.

"Master, I know what you must be feeling right now but please, don't let this destroy you! There are a few things you need to know. I didn't want to tell you first because the Lord Emperor after all is a very ... attractive person and I hoped that maybe you as most of the others would eventually fall for him but now... Anyway, you have to listen to me now: the Lord Emperor is still very young and changes his lovers often. Though you might hold his interest now this won't last long. Eri-sama, whose place you have taken lived here no longer than three month which was an exceptionally long time. Right now there is absolutely nothing we can do to get you out of here but in a few weeks things might be entirely different. Please, master - Izumi - think about it! The emperor can be very generous - you, your family, you will have everything you desire! You have no idea what good such an relationship can do for all of you! Your sister Serika already has the status of a High Lady and a dowry big enough to marry any man she wants. And your younger brother! The Lord Emperor has already ordered for him to receive the education of a bastard prince - his carrier at court is ensured! Besides, even if you managed to insult the Lord Emperor in a way that would make it impossible for him to keep you as a lover any longer don't you realizes the consequences? Everybody around you would be affected. Please! You have to think about this logically - emotions are good but in such situations you have to concentrate on the facts and what is the most reasonable way to proceed!"

He.... is right. I can't risk to endanger my siblings.

"So what should I do?"

"Offer yourself to him - be eager, willing. If he doesn't have to fight for you he won't enjoy it that much. Become what he wants you to be and sooner or later he will leave you alone. What are a few months compared to the rest of your life?"

Very slowly I nod.

Three months - threes month he has said. I laugh bitterly, once again recalling that conversation Katsumi and I have had over a year ago. A year, a whole goddamned year, has passed and he still calls me into his bed every evening, still makes me feel that searing pleasure whenever he sees it fit.

After four months Katsumi was surprised, when half a year had passed he was starting to worry and when Koji, as I have been told to call the Lord Emperor, finally gave a great banquet to celebrate our first year together he said that he just didn't understand it. But what does it matter to him after all? Though he's the closest thing to a real friend I have he just doesn't understand what it means to have to endure an unwelcome touch every night again and again, trapped into a treacherous body that keeps surrendering to the enemy. I think he feels honestly sorry for me but in the end he's content to live in the palace as the respectable servant of the Emperor's favorite. Everybody around me seems to be content with the way things are.

Serika is in love with one of the lesser nobleman and as far as I know they are planning to marry before winter. I can't bother her with my problems now that she's really happy for the probably first time in her entirely life. And Yuugo? No matter how much I love him, he's just a little boy who is started to live a new life not too long ago - I life I have no part of. In fact I haven't seen him since more than two weeks. Koji is a very ... exhausting lover. Yes, everybody seems to be content - everybody but me.


nach oben

Chapter II (Koji)

It's boring. I should have never agreed on riding out with Eri and those sheep friends of hers. Holding audiences isn't exciting either but at least it is something to do.

"Hey, aren't the new hostages arriving today? Why don't we go and take a look at them? Maybe there are a few pretties among them."

I have no idea who has just yelled this but it sounds like a good idea. Nodding graciously I turn my horse and set out for the stable yard where I suspect the hostages to be. The others are following me, obviously as enthusiastic about this idea as I am. We must have really been bored. Going at top speed it takes us no more than five minutes to reach the stable, about three dozen heads snapping around as our horses come to a slithering halt.

Slowly, one after the other, the people in front of me drop to their knees, showing me their respect. In the end only two or three of the hostages are left standing. Defiance? No, merely shock or stupidity or both, I judge as I look into the eyes of the first girl, a mousy little thing that probably wouldn't even dream about contradicting anyone let alone me. But there ... what is it about this one? As I look into the eyes of the boy closest to me I'm spellbound. Such fire. There's will in this one, spirit, intelligence. The furious defiance in his eyes fascinates me, calls out for me to try and replace it with love and gentleness and dedication. Yes, I want to make this boy adore me.

Give the boy's beauty it might even be worth the difficulties. Deliberately slowly I lift my riding crop and point at the boy, marveling at how his eyes reveal each of his emotions.

"This one! I claim this one for my bed!"

Without saying anything more I press my heels to my horse's flanks, sending it galloping towards main buildings. The guards and servants will know what this means and will see to it the boy is treated properly and prepared to my approval. This evening he will be brought to me - this evening he will be mine.

The sun has long since set when I finally manage to leave the great hall, hoards of noblemen and ambassadors having kept me occupied for at least four hours. I all but rush through the corridors, going as fast as my dignity will allow. The thought of that fiery boy waiting for me in my bedchamber has made me hard long ago, constantly gnawing at my patience. Oh gods, if I don't get into my chambers soon...
In front of the door to my suite I take a few seconds to compose myself. Letting the boy get the impression that I'm not in control of myself would do no good. Eventually I open the door and enter, immediately seeing my soon to be lover sit at the table. He's even more beautiful now that he's washed and clad in fresh clothes though one can still feel the fire beneath that well-groomed facade. He tries to stand up but immediately starts to sway, helplessly falling back into his chair. Chuckling inwardly I notice the empty goblet of wine beside him. More than a little tipsy, aren't we. Good. This will make it easier. I swiftly cross the distance between us, stopping only right in front of him. His eyes are slightly unfocused, confusion having replaced the fierce defiance that has been in them before.

"What is your name?"

"Why... why are you asking this?"

"What, is it so uncommon that I wish to know my future bedmates name?"

I lean down and press my lips to his, unable to resist their sweet temptation any longer. The first taste of him is overwhelming. Such sweetness. I'm just about to deepen the kiss, to feed from those irresistible lips until I'm satiated, as the boy jerks away, catapulting himself away from me with a speed I wouldn't have given him credit for. Mmmh, I was right - such spirit!

I smile amusedly and just follow him, taking no offense in his resistance. He will be mine soon enough and willingly so. He seems to be sober again, the alcohol probably overpowered by an immense rush of adrenaline. Sober and furious.

"Bring me into my own quarters! You have no right to keep me here! I'm the emperor's hostage and he'll surely not be pleased if he hears that one of his noblemen has molested me!"

I can hardly refrain from laughing. So he still doesn't know who I am. All the better - like this I at least won't have the impression that he's spreading his legs for my crown. Though it probably won't take him long to find out the truth I decide to play along for now, this little lie even heightening the thrill. Ah, how I want him. I can still taste him on my lips...

"The emperor, little angel? He's a cold man that cares little for his hostages except that they are alive. You wouldn't want to meet him. No, you're much better off with me."

I have him cornered now, unable to run away any longer. Remembering that delicious taste of before I lean down again though this time I kiss not his mouth but the fragrant skin of his neck. He's trembling ever so slightly, his heart beating in a frantic rhythm as I can feel at the pulse that throbs under my lips. The temperature suddenly seems to rise several degrees and instinctively I pull the boy closer against me, relishing in the feel of his silky skin. His close proximity turns me on in a way I could have never predicted, making my mind reel and setting my body on fire. Have to get him into bed... now....

Barely realizing that his struggle has ceased I lift him up and swiftly cross the room, carefully laying him down onto the soft mattress of my bed. For a few second I look down at him, taking in every detail of that intoxicating body. The boy's eyes are half-closed, a lovely blush coloring his cheeks, sun-tanned bronze skin tinged pink. His flimsy silk tunic is all crumpled and out of place, the cloth so tight over his chest that I can see his nipples through it. Need to get it off...

Too impatient to be bothered with the numerous ties and clasps I simply rip at the fabric, roughly baring the boy's chest. Considering his seeming innocence I should maybe be more careful but he doesn't protest and to tell the truth I'm far too aroused to pay much attention anyway. What is it about this boy that makes me so damned hot?! Moaning I rub my hardness against the velvety skin at the inside of his thigh. Through the haze of arousal I realize that the boy is still lying motionless under me, my pleasure clouded mind translating this into yielding. Yes...

Frantic to learn that exquisite body, I run my hands over it, a multitude of impression flooding my brain. Soft, soft skin, small, peaky nipples, rounded buttocks that fit perfectly into my palms, hard muscles... so delicious.
Unable to wait any longer I grab the boy's hips and pin them onto the mattress, eager to discover those other parts of his body. He's perfect there as well, not overly big but well-shaped and seized. Spreading his legs further apart I let one hand travel down between the boy's buttocks, probing his exposed anus. Oh god, this will feel...!

Moaning helplessly I position myself against him, the tip of my penis nudging against his opening. I have to close my eye, afraid that just seeing that sweet body penetrated by my erect sex would be enough to make me loose it here and now. Can't... hold back...

Giving a low growl I enter the boy with one hard thrust. I tremble helplessly as his tight heat grips at me, desire washing every coherent thought away. Gods. Within seconds I have worked myself into a frenzy, roughly holding the boy's hips in place while thrusting in and out of you. I can't remember having ever felt such pleasure. A small scream of triumph escapes my lips as I bury myself to the hilt one last time, shooting my seed deep into him.
I'm panting heavily, sweat trickling down my body and making me shudder. So delicious. I haven't felt such passion in - hell, I can't remember having EVER felt it before! Looking down at the boy I find that he is unconscious. Slightly disquieted I notice that he obviously hasn't come. I was too impatient, wasn't I? Sighing softly I lie back and mentally rebuke myself for my thoughtlessness. Just acting on my desires like some kind of animal...

There's something unbearably obscene at having this boy's unconscious body lying here beside me naked, with his legs wide spread and his soft mouth swollen from my kisses. Acting on this sudden impulse I pull one of the sheets over him, covering that body that has given me such unbelievable pleasure mere minutes ago. His face has gone slack in his sleep and for the first time he seems to be at ease. Sweet. I briefly think about sending him away and have him sleep somewhere else but immediately reject that idea. I wouldn't know where to put him anyway now that it is clear that I will keep him as a lover for a while and he can't go back to the other hostages. He's mine now - I won't let him go ever again!

Now where did that thought come from?! 'Won't let him go ever again' - he's just one bedmate among many. I shouldn't get so possessive over him. And why would I? Sure, his face is pretty and his body without flaw but it is a common kind of attractiveness. Among my nobleman there are more than ten more extravagant beauties, both male and female. And yet there's something about this boy that has my heart beating faster. Well, maybe if I keep him around long enough I'll find what exactly this 'something' is.

Suddenly feeling mortally tired I pull my little angel tighter against me, slightly surprised at how perfectly he fits into my arms. Mmmh, and he smells nice too. For the split of a second his face seems to shine from inside out. Truly an angel? Smiling softly at this thought I let my eyes slide shut.

I rise even before dawn, carefully disentangling myself from my lover's sleeping body. I allow myself a soft smile as I look down into his face. I ... want to give him something. Walking over into my dressing room I quickly rummage through my jewelry box, looking for something that would suit the boy's dark beauty. Given my pale complexion I own mostly silver, emeralds, sapphires and diamonds, stones that reflect, much light and don't make me look too colorless. For my little lover something entirely different is called for. When I finally find something fitting I exhale in relief. It is a golden necklace that goes along with rubies whose size match a child's fist's. Perfect. There seems to be fire in those stones, the same fire as I've seen in your eyes.

Carefully placing the jewelry into the boy's open hand I look into his lovely face one last time, gently kissing his parted lips goodbye. Once I've closed the door behind me I call for the servants, telling them to dress me and fetch Takasaka for the morning audience.

Soon my chief chamberlain is standing in front of me, rubbing his hands nervously while I explain to him what I want to have done this morning.

"... Ah, there's one more thing: My little angel is to move into the rooms next to my own ones. I don't want any doubts about his position at my court - or in my heart."

"Bu... but your majesty, doesn't Eri-sama live in these rooms?"

"Well, then tell her that she has to find something else. She has enjoyed our hospitality long enough. I don't want to see her again."

"Y.. yes your majesty."

"And of course my new lover will need a personal slave. Find somebody suitable. How about that boy you talked to me about last week? Use him, if you please."

Having considered my last words as a command to go and execute my orders immediately, Takasaka is already half out of the door when I remember one last thing.

"Ah Takasaka, wait! My little angel, I have forgotten to ask who he is, haven't I?"

"Well, actually you have, your majesty. He is the nephew of the sovereign of one of the less important northern kingdom - a pretty small and desolate place if I may add. But there's something else that might be of interest for you majesty: the reason why we suddenly saw it fit to demand hostages from this special kingdom is that three of the Lords that tried to overthrow you this spring went straight there. This young man's uncle took them in and housed them until our troops arrived and arrested them. Unfortunately we were never able to prove that that king had knowledge of the Lords crimes. A most strange coincidence nevertheless."

"So my little angel is a traitor?"

"Not necessarily. As I said, it was never proved."

"And his name?"

"Izumi. Takuto Izumi."

"Very well Takasaka, I see you are as well informed as ever. Now go and do as I told you."

Eyes still narrowed I watch Takasaka leave the room. A traitor? Angrily shaking my head I push that thought as far away as possible. Not my pure little angel. This evening I go directly to my lover's new rooms, not even entering my own suite. The boy's sitting in an uncomfortable looking wooden chair, obviously doing his best to look nonchalant but failing miserably. His eyes are slightly widened, the white cloth of is tunic clinging to his sweaty body. He is ... scared of me? I try to smile reassuringly at him though it doesn't seem to do any good.

"Are you contend with your new rooms, little angel? Or would you rather live with me in my own chambers?"

Obviously that wasn't the right thing to say since the boy frowns angrily and quickly gets to his feet. He pushes something into my hand but steps back immediately afterward, not wanting to be close to me. Looking down I recognize the necklace I've left with him this morning. Why?

"You didn't like my present, then? Well, in this case I'll get you something else. What would you like, hmm?"

"I want nothing from you! I ain't a whore that gets paid for its services!! Bring me back to the others - I don't wanna be here!"

He... he dares? For a moment I don't know whether to laugh or to be angry. This little boy is telling me - the Lord Emperor of Serion - that he doesn't want me, something nobody has ever dared before. Dropping the necklace I decide that I like his insolence. Now I really start to laugh, earning myself an angry stare not even Eri would be able to match. Delightful. He really doesn't understand at all.

"I think you don't understand your position, little angel - what you want is no consider. You've been mine ever since you first set foot on Serionan ground. I could call in the guards and have them hold you down while I have my way with you. I could give you an aphrodisiac so potent that you'd be begging me to touch you. But... this is not what I want. I want us to be lovers. I want you to be there when I come into my bedroom in the evening. I want you to feel pleasure when I touch you. Little angel...."

I talk to him as if he was a frightened little animal, never taking my eyes off him but constantly drawing closer. He stands still even as I put my hand to his hip, small tremors shaking his body. So confused. For a moment it seems as if my words have the desired effects, his eyes close and he relaxes against me. However in the next second he jerks away, hand rising in order to strike.

Oh no, you won't!! Instinctively I reach out and block his blow, hand closing around his wrist. That insolence that has been cute and endearing mere moments ago is now a serious affront. Fury washes through me and acting on this impulse I roughly force the boy to follow me into my suite, making him lay down on the silk sheeted bed. He is mine and by the gods, I'm gonna make him acknowledge it! Still more than a little furious I tie him up, simply wrapping the sash I've been wearing around those slender wrists. When I'm done I look down at his bound form, my rage slowly fading away. No, I don't want to hurt him, not really.

Suddenly feeling more than a little tired I sit down and unbraid my hair, desperately thinking about how to proceed. I don't want to rape my little angel. No, I have to make him feel pleasure, have to make him enjoy it. Maybe having him tied up isn't that bad after all. With him being unable to move I'll be able to focus completely on pleasuring him. A small smile plays over my lips as I imagine all the wonderful things I can do to him. But for most of them I need to undress him first.

Careful not to scare my little lover more than I already have I bare his torso, longing to once more feel that perfect bronze skin under my fingertips. But that will have to wait. It takes quite some time to peel the tunic the boy is wearing off, for though it is a relatively simple garment he isn't cooperating at all, letting me do all the work. He's still afraid, isn't he? Maybe I should say something...

"I know what you are thinking now, little angel but be assured that I won't hurt you. Yesterday I was very ... impatient. I wanted to savor your beauty, to make you mine, so I did it too fast. It needn't always be like that, you know?"

He doesn't believe me, I can see it in his eyes. Well, then I'll just have to show him. I let my hands roam over his chest, tracing the lines bones and muscles form on my little angel's body. As my fingers briefly toy with one of his nipples the boy's body is shaken by a tremor, the small nub of flesh hardening instantly under my touch. Not having expected such a strong reaction I pull my hand away, somewhat surprised at my little angel's sudden receptiveness. Probably yesterday he was just to drunk to react properly...

But why, if such a little touch can give him so much pleasure, won't he let himself be seduced? Doesn't he know how good I can make him feel?

"I'm wondering little angel, have you ever touched yourself?"

Surprisingly my little lover seems to be seriously offended by this question, shaking his head and glaring at me in indignation. That explains everything. I don't know much about the northern countries this boy comes from but obviously their outlook on certain topics is rather ... old fashioned not to say archaic. Probably he has never even considered to indulge into carnal pleasures before the marriage bed let alone with another man. Well, now he is my little angel and I'll see to it that he'll be cured from his narrow-mindedness soon enough. I let myself touch the boy between his legs for the split of a second, almost bursting into laughter at his shocked little gasp.

"So pure, little angel. Completely innocent to the ways of pleasure. But I'll show you, I'll show you..."

Taking up my occupancy with my little lover's body I caress his sleekly muscled chest, loving the way his pectorals tremble under my fingertips. His erect nipples draw me like honey the flies and soon I find myself teasing them mercilessly. The boy reacts beautifully, writhing and moaning softly whenever I pinch these small nubs of flesh. Eyes that have been looking at me with something between hatred and fear all along are now pressed tightly shut, face all tense with the effort of not letting show what bliss my little angel is in. Such sweetness. But I want him to look at me.

Gently cupping the boy's face I turn his head so that he has to look at me, smiling at the way he is blinking.

"You are still afraid, little angel but you are also starting to get ... aroused. That's good."

My eyes are drawn to my the boy's mouth, the memories of our previous kisses suddenly predominant on my mind. I frown in disappointment as those sweet lips are suddenly being pressed tightly together. He does know how to force his point.

I decide to kiss his neck instead, gently grazing my teeth over the tender skin of his throat. He makes some small, dismayed sounds as I continue to attack that sensitive area, his body obeying his will no longer. You are mine, little angel.
Seeking to distract the boy I close my hand around his already hardened penis, massaging it gently to wring more groans from him. Once more his reaction don't disappoint. If he'd just let go of his silly inhibitions he'd be such a passionate creature. Eager to learn that body even more intimately my mouth slowly kisses its way down his chest, leaving a wet trail that glistens suggestively in the candlelight. I can't help but lick my lips as I reach his groin, his hard sex inviting me to lean down and taste it. I know that I'm probably shocking my little angel but I want it so bad and in the end it will do no harm. He gives a soft scream as I finally close my mouth around that alluring piece of flesh.

But you're getting too close! I manage to pull away just in time, your distressed whimpers showing me the intensity of what you must be feeling. Trying to comfort you a little I caress your face. Poor little angel.

Remembering that I myself am still fully dressed I set to take off my clothes, smiling inwardly as I feel the boy's eyes on me. Though he's probably not all that comfortable with what I'm doing he obviously can't keep himself from looking at me. To my surprise there's something close to admiration in his eyes. Deliberately slowing down my movements I pull my trousers off, wanting to give my little angel something to stare at. The boy's blushing again, looking incredibly lovely.

"There little angel, it isn't that bad, is it? You don't dislike my body, that much I can see. Just relax now - I promise I won't hurt you."

He is looking calmer now, calm enough for me to try and take the next step. Again I bury my head between those slender legs though this time I don't move to kiss your hard length but aim for that small, hidden crevice between your buttocks. As I've expected you're more than a little surprised as you feel my tongue at that most private part of your body. Now I'm glad that I've tied the boy up before because all of a sudden he starts to struggle and might have well ended up landing a few blows on me had he not been securely bound. Fortunately his little fit of temper is over as sudden as it has begun, his body relaxing and getting easy to handle again.

Glancing at the bedside-table I notice contently that a small vial of oil is standing there. I have to remember to reward my servants tomorrow. Coating three fingers of my right hand with that slick, scented substance, I start to prepare my little lover, trying to be as careful as possible. I want him to enjoy it this time.

I push the tip of my index finger past the tight ring of muscles that guards the boy's entrance, feeling it clamp down on me, trying to keep me out. Why won't he relax?! Desperate to make him loosen up I caress his hip and stomach, all the while carefully working my finger deeper into him. It seems to take an eternity until he shows the first signs of yielding and longer still until I have finally the feeling that he's ready. Despite all my efforts my little angel winces as I penetrate him. Did I hurt you after all? But I can't go back now. I'm too aroused ... far too aroused...

As slowly as I can I force myself deeper into you until I'm buried to the hilt, praying to god that I don't cause you too much pain. Though I try to remain motionless as long as possible I soon begin to move, unable to get that body of mine under control. With every second that passes I thrust a little faster, making that slender body under me tremble and shake.

All of the sudden the boy gives a gasp and his body shudders convulsively, his face a mask of intense pleasure. That's it! Now that I know what to do, in which angle to thrust, our bodies are soon moving against each other, a shiny layer of sweat smoothening the moves.

By now the boy is panting just as heavily as I am myself, his erect penis bobbing enticingly right in front of my eyes. Growling I reach out and grab it, roughly massaging it to see more of that bliss in my little lover's eyes. I moan at the feel of strong legs being wrapped around my waist, my hard sex sliding even deeper into the boy's yielding body. Yes, this is what I've imagined it would be like. For a few minutes the two of us are in heaven, the world consisting of heated flesh, pleasure-filled gasps and the body of one another. My little lover is just as frantic as I am, writhing and straining to get closer to me. I shudder and moan throatily as his hips rise from the mattress, my pace getting even faster in these last few seconds. Finally I give a small, feral growl and thrust deep into that deliciously hot body one last time, the world dissolving into pleasure.

The next time I open my eyes I find that I've collapsed on top of the boy, my harsh breath stirring the soft strands of hair at your neck. Those beautiful dark eyes are half open but seem to look right through me. Looks like I've made you black out again. My fingers are trembling as I untie you, exhaustion and fatigue making it impossible to move more efficiently.

The boy doesn't even seem to notice what I'm doing but just lies there, remaining motionless even as I pull him close and rest my chin on the top of his head. What comes next is something of a surprised. As soon as my little angel finds that he can move freely now he wraps his arms around me and snuggles close, sighing contently as if that was what he has been wishing all along. I yawn and enjoy the feel of his warm body beside me, soon almost asleep myself. Tomorrow I'll see to it that my little angel gets a present he really likes.

In the next morning the first thing I do is call Takasaka to me again, feeling more than ever inclined to make my little angel happy.

"Well, Takasaka the present I gave to my little angel - he didn't want it. No, it was my fault. He generally doesn't seem to be interested in jewels and such things. You've done some research on his background and things, haven't you? Tell me, what could I do to make him happy?"

"W.. well, he has two siblings he seems quite attached to. They have been sent here as well. Serika, 14 years old and Yuugo 9 years old. Maybe if you did something to improve their position...?"

He looks incredibly insecure though he has just made an excellent proposition. Yes, that sounds just like the kind of favor my little angel would appreciate.

"Very well. The girl, Serika, shall be called Lady from now - HIGH Lady - and be treated likewise. Double, no triple, her dowry. She shall be able to chose her husband among the highest of my nobleman. And Yuugo... the best that can be offered to little boys is education, isn't it? Well then, send him to school with the royal bastards. What are you waiting for? Go!"

Contently I watch my chief-chamberlain hurry off, knowing that my commands will be executed as fast as possible. It's a pity though that I won't be there to see my little angel smile when that slave boy of his will tell him. Well, this will make him happy and that is all I ask for.

Though my thoughts are far away I manage to smile and nod at all the right times, not letting my ministers see just how distracted I really am. I'm thinking of you, of course, of the year we have spent together and how happy you have made me. Nobody has ever fascinated me the way you do, nobody has ever roused such emotions in me. I love you. I know that the whole court is buzzing with rumors about my devotion to you - no lover has ever been so cherished, has enjoyed so many privileges. People are already starting to say that they have two emperors.

Well, my little angel deserves nothing less. You must have had such a hard life at the crude mountain castle of your uncle so it's only fair that I try to make up for it. Were you a woman I think that I'd have married you long ago but as things are spoiling you a little is all I can do. But how I love to give you things, to see those dark eyes shine whenever I have something new for you. And yet there's something profoundly unhappy about you, an air of sadness that remains no matter what I do.

I sigh softly at the thought of that forlorn expression that steals over your face every now and then, wishing that you'd just tell me what is wrong. This should be a time of happiness for you - your sister will marry soon, your brother is about to be made a page and you yourself are beloved by the most powerful man in the world. What more could you ask for?

I frown as I notice that Takasaka is coming up beside my throne, looking more nervous than ever. I nod almost imperceptibly, giving him leave to speak. He whispers a few words into my ear, his voice so hushed that I can barely understand him.

"Izumi-sama's uncle is here, your majesty and wishes to talk to you. Izumi-sama has already been informed and is on his way to him. The old king is waiting in your study - he seemed quite ... agitated."

I nod again and Takasaka retreats. Your uncle? Here? I end the council at the next possibility, telling the ministers that I'm too tired to be bothered with those petty problems any longer.

I rush immediately to my study but find that you're already in the room, a loud voice that presumably belongs to your uncle echoing through the corridors. Frowning in concentration I try to understand the words. I don't like what I'm hearing.

"... Or were you just busy offering your ass to the Lord Emperor?! Oh no, you shut up now, boy! I always thought that my brother if not anything was at least able to produce favorable offspring but now you disappoint me as well!! Oh, what have I done to deserve his?! Three children and none of them is any good! A boy that doesn't even remember what his homeland looks like, a girl that is now a 'High Lady' - ha, high whore, that's what she is! - and another boy that spreads his legs for every tramp and lets himself be fucked like a girl! A girl, that's what you are!!"

Cold rage is welling up inside of me. Who does that disgusting man think he is that he dares to say such things to you? That horrid old man is to blame for all your problems and fears concerning our relationship. He's responsible for your sadness. Bastard! I force myself to calm down a little before I enter the room. Strangling a subordinate king that is visiting my court wouldn't be the cleverest thing to do no matter what stupid and intolerant a man he is.

When I finally enter the room my breath catches in my throat. How... how DARE he?! The fist of the red faced man that is standing right in front of you is raised in a way one can not misinterpret, the tension in the room almost unbearable. Had I not come in now he'd have actually hit you. That loathsome person that has been threatening you mere seconds ago is now kneeling down now, bowing his head to show his respect. Looking at his exposed nape makes my hand itch for my sword.

I give no sign of even noticing the man but immediately walk over to you, wrapping my arms around your slender form. You are trembling, I notice, probably from fury. Poor, little thing. To think that you should be related to THIS. I lick at the tender skin of your throat, tasting salt and that special mix of flavor that is undeniably you. Feeling the tension in you I finally deign to acknowledge your uncles presence, allowing the man to stand up.

Nothing that person says to me in the next ten minutes comes even close to making me change my mind about him so finally I send him away without fulfilling even one of his requests, unable to endure his presence any longer. Unthinkable that this guy has anything in common with you. Noticing your troubled expression I gently stroke your hair, telling you to not worry about that old fool, that he will leave soon and never bother you again. I will protect you.

Unfortunately I have to leave you alone all too soon, the desperate sounds Takasaka is making in front of the door, catching my attention. Probably I've forgotten something important again. Well, what does it matter - I've saved a maiden is distress, haven't I? Little angel...

Later, in the evening I return to my chambers, frowning in surprise when I find them empty. Shouldn't you be here? Well, you've probably just gone outside to think - your uncle's visit seems to have shaken you pretty badly. I lay down and try to read a little. It's no use! I just can't concentrate without knowing that you are well and not sitting somewhere and crying your eyes out. The next twenty minutes I spend staring at the closed door, willing you to come to me and let me comfort you. When you finally arrive it is already dark, long shadows making it impossible to see your face clearly.
For long seconds you stand motionless by the door then, ever so slowly, your hand moves to your shoulder, pushing away the straps of cloth that hold up your tunic. What the....?

I suck in a sharp breath as the soft folds of cloth give way and slide down your arms and chest, revealing smooth bronze skin and lean muscles. Now what is this all about little angel? Seduction? But there's no need for you to seduce me - I'm crazy for you. I watch silently as you take off the rest of your clothing, afraid that anything I might say or do would scare you away. Eventually you're standing naked in front of me, beautiful body trembling ever so slightly. Are you scared, little angel? On the verge of crying? Or merely excited?

I can feel a familiar tinge of arousal in my loins as you slowly walk towards me, each of your feline moves bringing you closer to me. Though my teeth dig themselves into my lower lip I still refuse to show any reaction, telling myself that it's probably best to just let you do as you please.
When you reach the end of the bed you drop to your hands and knees, gracefully crawling towards me. You stop only when you are right in front of me, a sensual promise in your eyes. Ah little angel, what are you trying to prove?

I can't help but moan as pull at the drawstrings of my trousers, the trembling of your fingers making you clumsy. My head falls back as one of your hands sneaks into my pants, fingertips brushing over my rising member. For some strange reason you are trying to make me really hot - and succeeding effortlessly if I may say so.

Impatiently pulling the silk of my trousers down my hips you lean down, letting your breath fan over my heated flesh. Demon. I'm burning little angel, every cell of my body a glowing ember that threatens to spread into a wildfire every second, and all of that's you're doing. My hips rise from the mattress on their own accord, trying to get closer to you, to be touched by those perfectly shaped lips that seem so close... so close...
But you would never do this, would you? You've always been like this - receiving pleasure and letting me take mine but never really an active part of what's happening. No, you have never really done anything to pleasure me - not that it would have been necessary. Your mere presence is enough to arouse me beyond sensibility.

Feeling the tip of your tongue on me is so much of a shock that I hardly realize what is going on. Oh gods...

My body spasms uncontrollably, my hands coming down to grasp your hair, fingers twining into that silky hair. Holding my breath I wait for you to touch me again, giving small, needy whimpers to show just how much I want this. When your mouth finally descends onto my weeping member I have to bite my lip hard to keep from screaming. Gods, I've never imagined...
Being engulfed into that moist, hot cavern is pure bliss, your tongue a merciless tormentor that never ceases to find new ways to delight me. Half-mad with desire I force you to open your mouth wider, to swallow me deeper. I want release now ... but I also want this to last as long as possible... I want... I want...

All too soon my over-sensitized body isn't able to take this any longer and surrenders to your sensual assault. Izumi...

With a small scream I eventually come into your mouth, sensation charged darkness descending upon me. My whole body seems to be a cluster of nerves, stimulated and overwhelmed by rivers of fire that are still flowing from my groin.
Good... so good...

When I reopen my eyes I find that your face is right above mine, beautiful eyes wide open and filled with tears. Did I hurt you? Did I...? Did...?

"Koji say, do you love me?"

With something close to a sob I pull you close and cover your face with kisses, telling you that of course I love you, that you are my everything and that I'd never let anything happen to you. You must be so very scared.

You've snuggled up against me, arms wrapped tightly around my waist, face buried in my chest. You seem almost desperate, a confused child, clinging to the only hold that is still left.

"Koji, please, I want ... I need... please!"

You press even closer to me, making clear that you want to be touched. Of course I'm all too happy to oblige, gently caressing your trembling body. After some time when you seem to have calmed down a little I let go of you and carefully lower you onto the mattress, immediately moving to kiss the smooth expanse of your chest. Today you seem to be exceptionally receptive to tenderness so I do my best to show you that you are loved and cherished above everything else. For once you don't try to fight the pleasure I give you - in the contrary, you accept it, open yourself to it in a way I've never seen in you before. You're really starting to worry me, little angel.

I loose myself in the task of pleasuring your body, in the minute responses I get every time I do something you like, the sounds you make and the way your chest is heaving under my teasing mouth.
All of a sudden your hands are in my hair, pulling me back up, interrupting me. What is it?

"Koji... I... I..."

Looking into your face I find that you are crying despite the thunderstorm of pleasure I can see in your eyes. Little angel...

My penis is once again hard and ready, pressing wantonly against the soft skin between your legs as I lift your legs over my shoulders. Is this what you want, little angel? Despite not having been prepared properly you don't seem to feel any pain as I enter you. You immediately arch against me, urging me to go deeper, to make you mine completely. Having been satisfied a mere half an hour ago, I take my time now, slowly moving in and out of you. This is gentle lovemaking, tender and slow but breathtakingly intense nevertheless. We're moving against each other in perfect sync, breathing into each other's hair and clinging to each others body. You are beautiful... so very beautiful...
But you are still crying, aren't you? Why?! Why, little angel? What did he do to you that upset you so much? I can feel that I'm starting to cry as well, my tears dripping onto your lovely face and mingling with yours.

Soon we start to move faster after all, your obvious desperation transforming into some strange kind of sexual energy that even makes you claw at me to get me to take you harder. Finally, with a small scream, you climax, the way your ass tightens around me making me come right after you. Orgasm is short but intense, leaving behind a shale taste. Somehow this didn't feel right. I didn't really comfort you little angel, did I? You're still as sad as before, lying there with your eyes closed and your arms wrapped tightly around yourself. Sighing softly I pull you against me, resting my chin on the top of your head.

"What is it, little angel? Do you have a wish? Is there anything I can do for you?"

You bite your lip and refuse to look at me, a sure sign that you are nervous. Silly, little angel, by now you should know that you have nothing to fear from me. Finally you seem to have made up your mind to speak after all, for you open and close your mouth several times, looking quite desperate.

"K... Koji, my... I... I've been thinking that... I have been here for over a year now and ... and I miss my home. I wanted to ask you if maybe you would allow me to go back - not for long! I'd be back even before my sister's marriage! So please, Koji?"

"I'm sorry, little angel but that's quite impossible. You are a hostage after all - what would the parents of the others say if I'd just let you return home whenever you wanted? They're envious enough already. Besides, you know how much I love you. I don't like the thought of being without you."

"But couldn't you just come with me? I mean ... if you traveled north it would look as if it was out of political reasons and nobody would think anything of it if you took me with you. But of course you don't have time for something like this..."

You lay your head onto my chest again, looking utterly defeated. But that idea of yours - I like it. I don't think that I've ever visited the northern kingdoms before so it's about time that I let the people there look at their emperor. And I could see for myself how my commands and new laws are executed in far off areas of my empire. Furthermore there's that thing with your uncle. Treason is always a touchy affair and letting a suspect just get away is not exactly my idea of dealing with it. Accompanying you on a short visit home would be a welcome possibility to examine things and judge for myself. Well, and in the end it would make you happy. Maybe that sadness I've noticed about you was a result of you being homesick? Yes, this trip sounds like a very good idea indeed.

You must have misinterpreted my silence for you curl up and close your eyes, not saying anything more.

"I will talk to Takasaka about this. I think that a trip north would be a very good idea."

You remain silent even at that but I can feel your arms tighten around me, your way of showing me your gratitude. I understand, little angel. You don't have to say anything. Not anything at all.

Takasaka doesn't have any objections and even says that he himself would have suggested something like this soon. I smile and let him think that my consent is important to me though in reality I've long since made up my mind.

Since a big part of my court is going to travel with us out of representative reasons the preparations take about three month. Food is to be brought here and be preserved, the land we will travel through being not rich enough for so many people to feed of. Carriages and gear are to be repaired or bought, the lord emperor's travelling tent not having been used for almost 20 years. Many of the noblemen that are going to accompany us have to send home first to fetch various things they will need, mainly warm clothes and battle horses they didn't bring with them to court this summer season. I have a whole new wardrobe made for both myself and my little angel for my old clothes are hopelessly out of fashion and yours - I don't even want to think about the crude things you've brought with you.

You are so awed when the tailors finally deliver their works, looking wide-eyed at the many chests full of the finest cloths. I smile softly at the small sound you make as you discover that some of this must be for you, the colors of about half of the garments some I'd never chose for myself.

Now that we'd be ready to go Serika's marriage is coming up and knowing how much you love your little sister I decide to postpone out departure for another week.

When it is finally time to set out you are so nervous you can hardly sit still. I've used this possibility to give you a new horse, a sturdy little mare that will do well on long distances. You love animals - one can never go wrong giving you one as a present. I smile at the page that brings my own horse, a robust, white steed that has carried me into war more than once. I have another little surprise for you. Though having been made a page mere days ago your brother Yuugo is going to come with us, his new duty being to look after the lord emperor's luggage. I'm sure you'll be happy to have somebody to talk about your home with later on.
Mounting my horse I nod at the captain of the guard, giving the sign for our departure. Here we go.


nach oben


"Master! Master, you are to come into the Lord Emperor's study immediately! There's a man waiting there who says that he's your uncle!"

I stand rooted to the ground, unable to believe what I've just heard. My uncle? Here?! That's impossible, isn't it? Why would he come here...? I can feel myself pale, fear welling up in the pit of my stomach. There's only one reason why he could have taken the hardships of this long journey upon him. He knows. He knows what I have done - am still doing even in this second - the shame I have brought over our family. I wish I could just run and hide in my rooms but I cant bring myself to do this. For a moment I even wish that the Lord Emperor - Koji, as I have been told to call him - was here to back me up and protect me from the old man's wrath but I immediately scold myself for that weakness. I have to go and face this on my own. I ain't a woman that can hide behind someone else.

Slower than necessary I walk towards the Lord Emperor's study, treading the upcoming confrontation. I have to do this myself, I keep repeating, I just have to somehow cope with my uncle's anger. Biting down on my lower lip, I push the door open and enter the room, finding that the man that is waiting inside indeed is my uncle.

He doesn't move as I slowly approach him but his face is very red and the small vein that always appears on his forehead when he is furious is throbbing madly under his thin skin.

"So there he is, my poor, tormented nephew, the pitiable hostage of the Lord Emperor. Even too depressed to write letters home, weren't you? Or were you just busy offering your ass to the Lord Emperor?! Oh no, you shut up now, boy! I always thought that my brother if not anything was at least able to produce acceptable offspring but now you have disappointed me as well! Oh, what have I done to deserve this?! Three children and none of them is any good! A boy that doesn't even remember what his homeland looks like, a girl that is now a 'High Lady' - ha, high whore, that's what she is! - and another boy that spreads his legs for every tramp and lets himself be fucked like a girl! A girl, that's what you are!!"

Panting the old man stands in front of me, one hand lifted as if he wanted to hit me. I feel furious and guilty at the same time.

"Serika isn't a whore."

"You talk back to me?! You DARE to talk back to me?!!"

I swallow hard as he takes a step forward, sure that he'll hit me now. A second before his fist connects with my jaw a velvety voice interrupts him and he stops, breathing heavily at the effort of keeping himself in check.

"Is there any problem, little angel? This ... man is your uncle I suppose?"

Koji. Recognizing the Lord Emperor my uncle drops to his knees, a useless gesture of respect I've abandoned long ago. Not that I didn't kneel in front of him more often than I'd like anyway. Koji is drawing closer to me, languidly wrapping his arms around my waist, provoking my uncle even more. Still, I'm glad that he is here even though I feel incredibly guilty for this fact.

Trying to punish my uncle for what he has just tried to do to me he lets him wait on his knees for several minutes, all the while nuzzling my neck. I wish I'd just faint. I'm trembling with shame and at some point even Koji notices my discomfort and lets go of me, asking my uncle to stand up and tell why he has come here. All in all those two of them say no more than a few words to each other - hardly surprising considering their obvious antipathy.

Finally my uncle gets ready to leave though I can see that he as only said half of what he wanted to say. Now that Koji is here he doesn't dare to insult me anymore. Officially sharing the Lord Emperor's bed is a honor after all. I shudder as I see the look in the man's eyes. He really does hate Koji.

When my uncle walks past me he quickly slips a small piece of paper into my hand. Koji has to leave soon after him so that I have the opportunity to read my uncles message undisturbed. 'Meet me at dusk in the palace gardens.' I stare at the note for several minutes, not knowing what to make of it. What does he want - yell at me some more? It wouldn't be so bad if he wasn't right. He is so very right about me - in the end I really am a worthless whore.
I've grown accustomed to this place, to being Koji's lover. Sometimes, in the night when I was lying in Koji's arms I even felt ... content. I snort contemptuously. So that's what has become of me - a cheap whore that sells itself for a safe position and comfort in cold nights. There's no excuse .... there's just no excuse ...

At sunset I pull a cloak around me and sneak into the gardens, hoping that the evening audience will last long enough for my absence to remain unnoticed. I don't have to wait long. Almost immediately after I've passed the big fountain in the center I notice a dark figure in the shadow of one of the hedges. My uncle. Once again he doesn't move as I slowly walk towards him though this time his stance isn't quite that disapproving. He even seems to try to look friendly.

"Nephew, I was very harsh to you this morning. I said things about you and your siblings I shouldn't have said, things that weren't quite true. Can you forgive me?"

I nod slowly, trying to figure out what is going on. He... is apologizing to me? Why?!

"I know that what happened wasn't your fault. You didn't want this any more than I did. The only thing I could possibly hold against you is that you have given up but even that is ... forgivable."

Tears are welling in my eyes, tears of shame and relief that he is actually forgiving me. He has never meant much to me - in fact I always thought him a coldhearted old man - but except for my beloved siblings he is the only family I have after all. Frantically trying to keep myself from crying I finally burst out.

"Uncle is there something I can do? Anything?"

"Yes. Yes nephew, there is indeed something we could try. Talk to the Lord Emperor. Get him to visit our land - that shouldn't be too difficult for you, should it? Once both of you are there we will talk to him and when he sees how happy you are back at home he will surely allow you to stay. And I need you back at home - you are my heir and the crown prince. Do you understand, nephew? All you have to do is get him to visit the northern kingdoms then we will find a way to set you free."

"And Serika and Yuugo?"

He sighs, slowly shaking his head.

"They have to stay here. He won't let go all his hostages at one time. Besides, Serika is going to marry, isn't she? She wouldn't stay to live with us anyway."

Slowly, very slowly, I nod. I don't really think that this plan of his will be successful but I miss my homeland and who knows? Maybe it will work out after all.

I immediately hurry back into my rooms but despite my efforts Koji is already there, lying on the bed and smiling at me as I arrive. Convince him to let me go back ... but how? Closing the door behind myself I lean against it, looking thoughtfully at his still form. Maybe... maybe I could...
My hand seems to move on its own accord, slowly pushing the silk cloth of my tunic down my shoulder, acting on a half formed idea. Before I realize what I'm doing I'm already half naked. Gods, what AM I doing? But it's too late to stop now - I have to go through with this or I'll make a complete fool of myself.
Pressing my eyes tightly shut I take off my trousers as well, moving slowly in what I hope to be a seductive manner. I can feel his eyes on me and can't help but remember what they look like at times like this. Blue pools that seem to be frozen over but infinitely hungry nevertheless, desire lurking in their bottomless depths - eyes that attract and frighten me at the same time. No, don't think about that now, Takuto, think about what you have to do.

Desperately trying to keep my body from trembling too much, I cross the space between us. I mustn't hesitate. I mustn't falter. But why doesn't he do anything?! His seeming indifference disquiets me more than anything else. Usually he'd have long jumped me by now, taking the pressure of having to do something myself off me. Not so today. He doesn't do anything even as I climb onto the bed and draw even closer.

Koji... please!
He is aroused already, his hard sex clearly outlined under the thin silk of his pants. Forcing myself to not just run turn tail and run, I touch my fingers to that impressive bulge. He groans appreciatively and lifts his hips from the mattress, obviously enjoying himself immensely. But that's what I wanted isn't it? This was my idea, all of this. So why am I feeling so insecure - insecure about myself, him, the righteousness of this whole situation. Ain't I loading even more guilt onto me, now that I'm trying to use sex to manipulate him? No matter what he has done to me, this can't be right.

And yet I find myself pulling his pants down his hips, watching myself as if I wasn't even part of my body any longer. Maybe ... maybe, if I can keep up this wall of detachment I'll actually manage to get through with this.

His engorged penis is right in front of my face now and I gulp nervously. I've never seen him from this close though I can't say that I actually dislike it. It's just... unfamiliar. So strange that the mere sight of this organ that has touched me in the most intimate way possible is enough to profoundly confuse me.
Again my body acts without waiting for my minds decision, leaning down and touching the tip of my tongue to that flaring member. A multitude of flavors explodes into my mouth - sweet, salty, spicy, mild, everything at once. I pull back a little, shocked by my own courage. Did I really just do that? Did I really just LIKE that? I bite my lips in confusion, trying to sort out my jumbled thoughts and feelings. I want... I don't want... I want... - oh god, how am I supposed to...?

His fingers twine into my hair, urging me to continue and I comply quite willingly, simply letting him take over control. As he starts to thrust into my mouth I'm finally able to banish all those thoughts from my mind, welcoming the comfortable blankness that descends upon me. There's nothing important except the task at hand any longer. When I close my eyes his taste and scent flood my senses, his loud groans echoing in my empty mind. It is even quite pleasant to be doing this - the sense of power, the feel of loosing myself completely in somebody else. And then of course there's that familiar tightening in my groin. Oh God, what is wrong with me?! I can't like...! I just can't...! I really am a whore. A few seconds later my mouth is filled with hot seed, that strong body shuddering violently under me. At a loss of what else to do I swallow, feeling Koji's member softening even as I lick it clean.

Finally I manage to lift my head and look into his face. He is ... beautiful. For no apparent reasons tears are welling in my eyes. Why ... why am I crying? A worthless whore like me shouldn't cry. I'm hurting... I'm hurting so much... Koji...

"Koji say, do you love me?"

I almost clamp my hand over my mouth. Oh gods, what did I just say? But it's true, isn't it? I need to be loved - not so much by him as by anyone at all. I feel alone, so alone. Koji....!

He embraces me and showers kisses onto my face, whispering words of devotion and tenderness and undying love into my ear. For once I don't try to shut out his declarations, loving the way his voice sounds just now. It is all raspy and breathless and so very soft. I can hear the smile in his voice.
But I'm confused, so confused. Hundreds of half-formed thoughts are jumbling in my mind, making my head ache and spin. I can't bear this - not here, not now. I don't want to think at all! He - he can make it stop! He can always distract me, always.

"Koji please, I want... I need... please!"

I almost yell at him, desperate to get him to do something. Make me forget, Koji, please, just make me forget. After a second's hesitation he crushes me against his chest , petting and stroking me as if calming me was his only prospect. But this isn't what I want.

Finally his caresses heat up and I'm can to submit to myself to those sensations, all too happy to be finally able to just let go. He is in control now and nothing of what's happening is my fault. I'm not responsible. Surely I'm not.
But it still isn't enough! It feels great but it just isn't enough. Doesn't he understand that all I want him to do is to finally get on with it and fuck me until I don't even know the meaning of the word responsible any longer?! Trying to get him to look up at me I twine my fingers into that beautiful hair of his, tugging gently to make him lift his head. With a small moan of disappointment he complies, locking his eyes with mine. I must be still crying for his expression softens instantly, a small frown marring his otherwise flawless forehead. Suddenly I realize that I don't even know what to say.

"Koji... I ... I ..."

He seems to have understood for he pulls my legs apart and places them over his shoulders. God, yes...! I grit my teeth as he pushes into me, the pain almost as welcome as the pleasure. Closing my eyes I try to breathe deeply, letting myself relax against him. The first thrusts he makes are very slow and gentle, bringing fresh tears into my eyes. It is good to have him in me, reassuring. This at least will never change. He will always want me, always. But I'm starting to think again, ain't I? Make it stop Koji, please make it stop.

I start to arch against him and really meet his thrusts, frantically trying to get him to move faster. Koji being Koji I don't have to wait long. Soon he's pounding into me, sending wave after wave of mind numbing pleasure through my already over-sensitized body. The world around us just stops existing, nothing but the next thrust, the next contraction of muscles of any importance. I can hear myself scream

The next thing I know is that I'm once again lying in his arms, face nestled into the bend of his neck. Is it over? Still dazed I try to make sense of what has just happened. I just don't understand myself. To loose control in such a way...

Closing my eyes I try to convince myself that I'm falling asleep now. I don't want to think about any of this just now - in fact I don't think that I'll ever want to think about it but knowing myself all I can do is postpone it for a little while.

"What is it, little angel? Do you have a wish? Is there anything I can do for you?"

I swallow hard as I hear his voice, the original reason for my initiating this love-making predominant on my mind again. Now would be the right time to ask, wouldn't it? Why does it feel so wrong, then?

"K... Koji, my... I... I've been thinking that... I have been here for over a year now and ... and I miss my home. I wanted to ask you if maybe you would allow me to go back - not for long! I'd be back even before my sister's marriage! So please, Koji?"

"I'm sorry, little angel but that's quite impossible. You are a hostage after all - what would the parents of the others say if I'd just let you return home whenever you wanted? They're envious enough already. Besides, you know how much I love you. I don't like the thought of being without you."

"But couldn't you just come with me? I mean ... if you traveled north it would look as if it was out of political reasons and nobody would think anything of it if you took me with you. But of course you don't have time for something like this..."

My voice falters and finally I tell myself to just shut up and quit making an idiot out of myself. Well, what did I expect? That he'd say 'well, fine go back any time you want'? Sure. I really should stop being so unrealistic. He is the Lord Emperor after all - why would he want to do anything that would lessen his comfort?

Smiling bitterly I close my eyes. He has never really cared for what I'm feeling. NEVER!

"I will talk to Takasaka about this. I think that a trip north would be a very good idea."

My eyes snap open. Did... did he just say that he would...? A lump is forming in my throat and I almost burst into tears again. He's actually considering doing this for me? He probably WILL do this for me. Talking to Takasaka - as if Takasaka had any influence on what he's doing. As far as I can tell 'talking to Takasaka' is a synonym for 'generally it's OK with me but I don't want to say yes yet'.

A small smile steals over my face as I snuggle up against him. I can't remember having ever felt so happy in his presence. It feels... it feels as if we were really lovers. Lovers ... I and ... Koji?

At the day of our departure I wake up at five o'clock in the morning and immediately sneak out of bed, too excited to lie still any longer. Quickly putting on a robe, I look out of the window, happy to see that though Koji is still fast asleep hundreds of slaves and servants are already preparing everything. Dozens of heavy looking boxes are heaved onto carts, horses saddled and troops sent to make sure that the road is clear. Finally, finally it is time. The last few months have been an ordeal of waiting - nothing went smoothly and whenever everything seemed to be ready a new aspect surfaced that had to be taken care of immediately.

All of a sudden strong arms are wrapped around me, pulling me back against a powerful chest. Koji?

"Awake already, little angel? You really can hardly await it, can you? But will do me a favor? Wear some of your new clothes - you look utterly adorable in them."

I blush a little as I think of all the things he has bought for me. He must have spent a small fortune on cloth and tailors, not too mention all the gemstones and jewels that go along with it. I don't even know when I've started to accept his gifts - in the beginning I thought it more than insulting to be offered things as a reward for my having sex with him though now I know that this is just one of his more eccentric ways of showing affection. But he's spending way too much money on me nevertheless...

Well, no is definitely not the right time to think about this. Of course it's out of the question to wear such precious garments on a journey that will force us to stay on horseback for the longest time of the day - they would be ruined before the first two days are over. As I tell him so he shakes his head and chuckles softly.

"But that's what they were made for, little angel. They were made to be worn by you on this journey. What would you do with them once we're back? Here it never gets cold enough for them to be useful."

I gasp in surprise as I realize just what he has just said. So much money spent on something that won't be used for longer than two or three months?! This is crazy!

"Now don't pull a face, sweet. I told you I liked the way you look in them. But shouldn't you get dressed now? We'll be leaving soon."

Breaking from his grasp, I nod. He is right. We really should hurry up. About an hour later we finally step out of the gloomy interior of the palace and into the sun, the tension in the air so obvious it seems almost solid. A small shudder runs down my spine as they bring the horse I will ride - it is also one of his present, one that I liked even better than the clothes. I briefly pet the little mare's neck and she nuzzles my upper arm. I think that she likes me. Koji nods briefly and we get onto our horses, trumpets announcing that are leaving now.

After ten hours on road my enthusiasm has worn out, having been replaced by a tiredness so all-encompassing I threaten to fall from my horse every second. Gods, what I'd give for a hot bath and my good old bed. My eyes are half closed even as I pretend to be directing my horse and I only open them when the trumpets sound again and everybody around me comes to a halt. Is it over?

To my surprise there's no castle anywhere around - not even a cottage at that. What is he doing, stopping at a place like this? Only when servants start to unload the carts and unwrap huge rolls of cloth I understand that we are going to stay here for the night after all. Camping? I sigh softly, unable to muster much enthusiasm for spending a night in a damp tent with nothing but a few blankets to shield me from the cold. I've gotten soft, haven't I?

To my shame I'm so stiff that Koji has to help me down from my horse, my muscles so sore I can hardly move. Maybe it's good that we stay here after all - I couldn't have gone much further. Actually I'm about ready to drop dead. Tomorrow will be hell. Yawning I stagger after Koji towards a tent that seems to have materialized out of nothing. Sleep?
My jaw drops as I finally enter the tent. This... this is incredible. I don't know how but somehow the decor and furniture of one of Koji's rooms in the palace has been brought here and arranged artfully in the small space the tent provides - even a real bed is standing in one of the corners.

Unable to stand for even one more second I collapse into a nearby chair. I just wanna sleep. But I'll have to wash first, won't I? I'll close my eyes just for a few seconds. Just... for a few... seconds...

"Checkmate, little angel. You've lost, again.

He smiles and cocks his head, one eyebrow raised, daring me to ask for a return match. Of course I'd never be granted one - I've lost fair and square, as he would say, and now have to face the consequences. He motions for me to come to him and I obey, letting myself be pulled into his lap. His hands immediately start to roam over my body, seeking out places that they know will be receptive to their touch. I moan softly but immediately clamp my mouth tightly shut, desperate to not let any sound escape.

Guards are positioned all around the tent, the mere prospect of them hearing - no, I don't even want to think about that. He chuckles softly, amused by my display of shyness.

"Still so bad, little angel? And there I was thinking that after all those weeks you'd have finally gotten used to having a little audience. Especially after that miserable game of chess you've just given me - really, if I didn't know better I'd think that you actually wanted to lose."

I blush furiously and hide my face in his chest. Why on earth did I ever agree to let a game of chess decide whether we'd have sex or not?! When he proposed this I should have known that he was sure that he wouldn't loose - he'd never intentionally risk his every evening make out sessions no matter how much I may abhor the idea of having unseen men listen to our having sex together. I can't remember to have won even a single game.

I don't know how he does it but from one second to the other I'm naked, my tunic and trousers a crumpled pile of silk a few feet away. My back arches as cold fingertips touch my sensitive skin and trace my spine, enticing a series of small shivers. Then he proceeds to cup my buttocks, lifting me a little to ground his hips into my pelvis. Still too cool to be comfortable his fingers slip between my cheeks and set to explore my crack, making me hiss as they brush against my opening.
Before long my head falls forward and I find myself panting harshly, still trying to avoid making any sounds loud enough to pierce the thin cloth that is the wall. But he's making it difficult for me... so difficult...

As he pushes a finger into me my body instinctively arches forward, rubbing our hard sexes together. Koji moans appreciatively and pulls me closer still, embedding his finger even deeper in me. After a few minutes of rocking and rubbing he simply scoops me into his arms and carries me towards the bed, laying me down onto heaps of soft pillows. Mere seconds later he's over me, kissing my chest and stomach and moving deeper yet. The first few moans are starting to break from my tightly sealed lips so I bring my hand to my mouth, frantically biting and sucking at m own flesh. Like this I'm at least not able to make much noise. He has taken my organ into his mouth and is teasing it mercilessly, tongue swirling around the sensitive tip. I still don't understand why he likes doing this so much. He says he enjoys giving me pleasure but that can't be all, can it? Sometimes I have the impression that he's trying to make me a part of himself, that he's trying take in all of me, my scent my taste, the texture of my skin - everything. But it feels so good... SO GODDAMNED GOOD!!!

As times goes by and he starts to really suck me I have to bite my hand harder and harder, eventually tasting the slightly sickening copper flavor of blood. But I mustn't... I just mustn't....

My body is spasming uncontrollably but all of a sudden that searing mouth is gone and I'm untouched, suffering. With an angry hiss he grabs my wrist and yanks it from my mouth, staring at the wound my teeth have left there.

"Now what do you think you are doing?! You are hurting yourself, little angel. You are bleeding!"

Still muttering angrily he rips one of his shirt apart and starts to dress my wound, wrapping long straps of linen around my hand. He is ... angry at me? When he's finished he turns away and moves to site at the edge of the bed, looking altogether too serious. What is he doing? Why isn't he continuing?

"You have won. I won't try to seduce you any longer. Not if that means that you hurt yourself. There are some things even I won't do. Go to sleep now, little angel. We will reach your uncle's castle tomorrow - you will want to be rested for that."

I swallow and cast my eyes down, insecure as to what to think of that. He really isn't going to continue. All of a sudden that thought doesn't seem that attractive any longer. But ... but I always wanted him to just leave me alone, haven't I? I'm cold. Shivering I wrap my arms around myself. It's always been so warm when he was with me. Koji... warmth... I edge closer to him, resting my head against his back.

"Do you... do you think you might kiss me while we...? This way I wouldn't be able to make so much noise."

He tenses up but at least doesn't try to avoid my touch, head turning so that his cheek is nestled into my hair.

"No, you wouldn't make so much noise. But are you sure that this is what you want?"

Though he doesn't see it I smile, tears gathering in my eyes.

"Idiot. When did it ever matter what I want?" He laughs a little. That's good. In the next second I'm under him, his hard sex pressing between my legs. He doesn't say a word but kisses me hungrily, plundering my mouth. There's so much need in his kiss...

I just wish he'd finally undress. Ah, I know, I'm gonna do it for him. He seems to have got the same idea for soon four hands are fumbling with his clothes, clumsily pulling and tearing at those obnoxious garments. Having our lips practically glued together doesn't make things easier either. They just won't ... go off! Finally he's naked after all and so deliciously close to me.
But there's still space between us, far too much space. I moan into his mouth and start to writhe impatiently, trying to draw him into me. He kisses me harder yet, the moist tip of his sex pressing against my opening. Yes!

Both of us groan when he finally enters me but fortunately the sounds are muffled by the tight junction of our lips. Oh God, that's so perfect. His heavy body is covering me and for once I don't feel trapped but heavenly secure. He is over me, in me, all around me, shielding me from the cold and from everything else. It is wrong to feel this way, I know, but there is not much I can do. And this constant fight against him and the way he makes me feel is so exhausting ... so very exhausting...

We are moving smoothly against each other, months of frequent love making having made us sensitive for each other's needs. His thrusts are rapidly getting faster and I do my best to keep up with his pace, frantically lifting my hips to feel as much of him as possible. With every second it gets more difficult to breathe, the need for oxygen getting bigger but our constant kissing keeping us from fulfilling it. But he has promised me that he wouldn't let me make much noise, he has promised it!

He is getting more aggressive yet, biting and growling in a way that almost scares me. Sensations are starting to cloud my mind, making it difficult to think straight. I'm hot, so hot - I think I'm burning! Each of his thrusts sends a wave of searing pleasure through my tremor shaken body, driving me closer to the edge. That's it.

But suddenly he lifts his head and tears his lips from mine, making my eyes snap open. He's ...? His harsh breaths sound unnaturally loud in my ears. He has betrayed me. He grins at me even as he lifts his hand and clamps it over my mouth, making it difficult to breathe.

"I'm sorry little angel but I'll ... need my breath for what is to come. I take it ... my hand will do as well?"

Of course he can't see it but I'm smiling at him, tears glistening in my eyes. So he does care. Seconds later all of this is forgotten, a haze of pleasure cutting us off from the rest of the world. I think I'm trying to yell his name.

I sigh contently as I feel his warm body settle down beside me, happy to have something big and comfortable to snuggle up against. I'm tired, to tired to muster the energy to as much as blink. But then, there's nothing wrong with falling asleep now, is it? He has wrapped an arm around me, hand resting on my hip. It's nice to be lying here like this. Darkness is taking over.

"You are wrong. What you want - it does matter."

To be continued...

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