The Important Stuff

A Beginning

A story has to begin somewhere. If you've ever played a RPG then you know that many stories start in taverns. How else are you to gather...

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Empire of Shenendril: The Sapphire Chronicles 0 Ch.1

The young man at the vanity was a whore. Though not just any whore, he was a courtesan of the esteemed House of Sighing Shadows. With hair of gold, sun kissed skin, and sapphire blue eyes he could easily turn heads even when he was not all dolled up for his client. He had a slim strong physique thanks to hours of daily practice with his dance and acrobatics instructors. Flexibility was important in his profession and the young man was capable of feats that made even the most jaded whore blush.

Lucas was the House’s top courtesan. His client list included some of the most powerful men and women of the Empire, and he could pick and choose among the elite like others picked the juiciest piece of fruit. At times though his choices were dictated to him by the mysterious figure known to most of the courtesans only as The Mistress. To others who wandered the darkness, she was the Empress of Shadows, the most powerful crime lord in the Capital if not the entire Empire. No one disobeyed an order from The Mistress, especially not Lucas who was her favorite. Tonight, his client would be one that his Mistress requested he entertain.

He attempted to relax in his dressing room as maids fluttered around him like well-trained butterflies. One brushed his hair, as another applied color to his lips. A third stood at the ready with the waist cincher he would wear that eve, the rest of his clothes laid out for him nearby. He was lost in thought, not all there, when he looked in the mirror at the figure that lurked near the back of the room. The Procurer was like a ghoul, gaunt features, pale, all in black. He was there to make sure that the Mistress’s pets performed as they had been trained.

“Who am I entertaining this evening? The name slipped my mind.”  Lucas asked airily as he closed his eyes so the maid could apply color to his eye lids.

“For the last time.” The Procurer’s voice was an annoyed hiss, “Lord Malcolm Devonshire. You’ve entertained him over a dozen times and each time he has attempted to purchase your contract. His House is the second highest supplier of Dragon Stone after the Mining Guilds.”

“Ah yes.” He smiled at the girl who applied his makeup until she blushed prettily.  It was probably a good thing she wasn’t too pretty or she would be the one who sat there being pampered. “Dear sweet Lord Malcolm... the Lord of Farts and body odor like old cheese.”  The maids giggled but swiftly grew quiet at another hiss from the Procurer.

“He is a very important client and you know what is expected of you.” The Procurer stepped out of the shadows of the room to loom over Lucas’s shoulder.

“I am very aware of what is expected of me.  Have I ever failed our Mistress?”  His sapphire blue eyes seemed to spark as he met the dead eyed gaze of the Procurer in the mirror.

“Not yet.”  The man growled. “Do not think that just because you are currently popular that this favor you hold with the Mistress will last.  Youth is but a fleeting thing and beauty fades.”

“And someday I’ll be as old and dried up as you.” He stood abruptly which caused maids to scatter. Lucas let his robe fall from his shoulders so he could turn slowly to examine himself in the floor to ceiling mirror, a mirror so large that only the top earner had the privilege of one so grand in their dressing room. He spent hours every day at work to be as visually pleasing as possible. From the removal of excess body hair, to hours spent naked in the sun so that his skin had a lovely warmth to it. He turned to face the Procurer, “But I’m not old and covered in wrinkles yet.”  He snapped his fingers under the foul old man’s nose.

The Procurer snarled as he turned on his heel to stalk from the dressing room. The maids whispered to one another until Lucas turned back to them, “Come along my doves... Let us not keep my client waiting... And child..., bottoms and boots first, then waist cincher.”

Soon he had on boots with a heel so high he practically walked on his toes, the soft pleated pants he wore fell loosely from his slim hips, almost wide enough to appear a skirt from a distance. The waist cincher gave him curves he did not normally have as silver rings with blue sapphires sparkled from his nipples. His hair had been pulled up into a loose bun where a single blue rose adorned his blonde locks. He found his clients enjoyed the aesthetic when he danced on the edge between the masculine and the feminine, they certainly paid enough gold dragons for the privilege of being in his company for a few hours.

As he exited the dressing room he walked through his boudoir over to the window that overlooked the House gardens. He sat gracefully in the chair there, one leg crossed artfully over the other as he nodded to the maids, “You can tell Lord Malcom I am ready and will see him now.”

The girls giggled again as they slipped from the room. The last one to leave whispered, “Good luck.” before she closed the door behind her. He had a few minutes to prepare himself mentally before the door opened once more. Lord Devonshire was in his 50s if he was a day with thinning hair and a paunch that strained the front of his shirt. For all that he looked as if he’d spent most of his life reveling in sloth, his eyes were sharp and his mind quick.  Though he was unfortunately absolutely in love with a whore.

He crossed the distance between them even as Lucas extended his hand to the much older man. “My dear sweet beautiful Lucas. How I have missed you. Why did you reject my appointments for so long?” He grabbed hold of Lucas’s hand, to press a kiss to it before he pressed the palm to his cheek.

“My beloved Malcolm… You know it was not my choice to say no to you for any length of time.” His fingers curled against the Lord’s cheek as he wore an expression of deep regret. “I must follow the edicts of my contract. Which does not always give me leeway in who my clients are.” Lucas purred like a feline who had all the cream, though it had been his choice to avoid the Lord Devonshire until his hand was forced.

“They hold your leash too tightly my beautiful boy.” He kissed his way up Lucas’s arm. “If only you were mine alone. How I long to buy your contract if only to rip it up. You know I would see you in luxury and grandeur. Your every need and desire seen to. You in my arms every night.”

“And your wife? Would she be so pleased to have me at your side?” Lucas slowly pulled his arm away as he turned to look out the window. This was a game they had played ever since the man first paid for a night with the youth. Lucas must pretend to be jealous of the man’s wife as if he would ever consent to being the old man’s plaything alone.

Lord Devonshire fell to his knees as he wrapped his arms around the leg that crossed over Lucas’s knee. “My darling boy. You wound me.  You know I no longer share that harridan's bed. She gave me heirs many years ago but now I long only for your touch... your caress... the smoothness of your skin...” His hand ran slowly up the back of the youth’s calf.

“Words words... nothing but pretty words.”  He pulled his leg away to plant his foot in the middle of the man’s chest. With an annoyed sound he pushed him backwards. The courtesan rose with fluid grace to walk out onto the balcony that overlooked the gardens. Lucas could hear music in the ballroom below as couples walked the garden paths before they retreated to the rooms within the brothel. He could almost count down to what happened next.

Lord Devonshire got to his feet with a heavy grunt. He reached into his pocket to pull out a small velvet pouch and pour its contents into the palm of his hand. As he reached around the boy he held out the jeweled broach, “Please my dear one, please forgive me. I know how much you love beautiful things... I had this specially made for you. See? A blue rose, sapphire like your eyes... a rose for what you always wear when we’re together.”

Well that was certainly better than those awful earrings the man brought him the time before.  He was certain those had come out of the Lord’s wife’s jewelry box at the last minute. He picked up the broach to watch how the candles around the room caused the gems to sparkle, even he could tell the worth of the jewels in that broach. No cut glass here, these were true sapphires and emeralds.
Lucas turned to smile and wrap his arms around the man’s neck, “I can never stay mad at you my beloved Malcolm.” As he leaned in for a kiss he managed not to grimace, why did the fat old fart always have to eat garlic before his time with Lucas? Perhaps he could schedule their appointments to begin during dinner, and he’d make sure Lord Fartshire at least ate something that wouldn’t make his breath reek like something had died behind his teeth.

As he parted from the kiss Lucas led the man over towards the massive bed that dominated the room. He released his client’s hand as he walked over to a cupboard which when he opened the doors they jingled with the many instruments of passionate torture that were hung from hooks there. Lucas took down a riding crop a little longer than his forearm.  He turned to face the client who grinned with delight, “Very well then my precious Lord, my miserable worm. Take those clothes off now you worthless sack of shit.  I’ll see you on your knees and sucking my cock before I count to ten.”

Lord Devonshire was ecstatic with delight as he tore his clothes off, “Yes my delightful boy. For you... anything!”

“Quiet! I didn’t give you permission to speak.” Lucas walked right up to him to slap the Lord across the face. The youth was continuously amazed how the more powerful someone was in their daily life, the more they seemed to take delight in being humiliated and abused. For all that he was still young Lucas had been trained by one of the very best in causing pain. His Mistress had taught him how to give his clients exactly what they wished for in pleasure, pain, and humiliation. How to send even the most powerful men onto their knees to grovel at his feet. He could gift pleasure so that it seemed to last an eternity, or hold someone on the very cusp of release to not let them tumble over that edge without his permission. He could walk the fine line between pleasure and pain and his clients paid coins by the sacksful for the privilege to be brutalized by the slim, almost girlish young man. He had come a long way from an orphan and thief on the poorest streets of the capital.

Hours later Lucas lay upon his bed clad only in a silk robe. His hair was loose once more, his makeup smeared.  The fine clothes he’d worn earlier cast off upon the floor. He held up the broach once more to watch how the candle light reflected from the depths of the gems as he could hear his client clean up in the wash room connected to his room. The boy was half tempted to spill an entire bottle of his favorite cologne on the old man’s jacket, let him explain That to his wife. When Lord Devonshire finally emerged he was fully dressed and once more a man who oversaw a grand noble House.
He placed the pouch which contained his payment for the evening on the bedside table, “When can I see you again dear boy?”  He asked softly, his voice hoarse after Lucas’s not so tender mercies made him holler and shout.

“You will need to confirm with the scheduler my Lord but I see no reason why you cannot see me again in two weeks.” Lucas offered with a smile as he dropped the broach on his pillow.

Lord Devonshire took up the youth’s hand and kissed it again, “I shall eagerly count the days till I can hold you in my arms once more.”

“Till then.” Lucas didn’t pull away that time. He had to wait until the Lord released his hand and finally left on his own. As soon as Lord Devonshire was gone the youth was on his feet to pull on the cord to call for the maids.  When the girls entered the room he pointed at the bed, “That disgusting creature released a wet fart all over my bed... I want those sheets gone and burned. “

He stalked into the washroom, kicked the soiled towels Lord Devonshire had used out as he ran fresh water in the bath. Just as he added some of his favorite scented oils to the water the Procurer arrived to loom in the doorway.

“Did you do as the Mistress requires?”  The ghoulish old man asked.

“Of course I did. When have I ever failed?” He snapped, annoyed his bath was delayed by the man’s presence.

“She wants the information Now.” The Procurer growled, always annoyed with the boy’s attitude.

“Dragon’s tits! I just spent four hours having to touch a rather disgusting fat old fart sucker and I would very much like to take a bath first.” Lucas glared at the Procurer.

“Your duty to your Mistress comes first. Or shall I inform her of your change in attitude?” He almost seemed gleeful at the thought that Lucas could be taken down a peg or two.

Lucas snarled in annoyance, “Bring my writing desk in here... I’ll write my report while I’m bathing.” He threw off his robe before he stepped into the steaming scented water, where he sank down until he was completely submerged before he sat up once more to push wet hair and water from his face.

The Procurer had one of the maids bring the small writing desk into the washroom.  A tray was laid across the tub and after he dried his hands Lucas took fountain pen to parchment as he began to write down everything the young mentalist had pulled from Lord Devonshire's mind. He was always intrigued by what someone would think of to stave off climax if they were being pleasured intensely and needed to think of anything at all distract themselves from the sensations. He had gleaned everything from shipping schedules, to the identities of business partners from Lord Devonshire's mind. He knew what goods were being shipped on the books, and what black market deals the Lord hid from the tax collector.

Lucas took a moment to admire his handwriting. Only four years ago he could barely scrawl his name, now he wrote with an elegant flowing script. He filled multiple sheets with the information he stole from the Lord’s mind before he finally pushed everything away, “That is all of it.  May I take my bath in peace now?”

The Procurer plucked up the sheets before they could fall into the water. He took a moment to read over each one, “The Mistress will be pleased.”  He told the boy as he carefully placed the sheets into a leather folio that he tucked under his arm.

“I live to please the Mistress.” he said as he sank down into the water once more, his eyes closed.

“See that you do… your position… depends on it.” He gave a skeletal grin as he turned and left Lucas in peace at last.

The boy gave the man’s back the old one fingered salute before he sighed, “How well I know...”  He whispered to himself. He wondered how much longer he would be able to bring in the well-heeled clients to keep his Mistress’s favor. What would happen to him when he was no longer her favorite? It was not a future he wanted to think about.

Chapter 2

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