Apocalypse (AU,CC,MATURE) COMPLETE - 9/5/14

Finished stories set in an alternate universe to that introduced in the show, or which alter events from the show significantly, but which include the Roswell characters. Aliens play a role in these fics. All complete stories on the main AU with Aliens board will eventually be moved here.

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ken_r
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Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 9, pg6 Feb 2, 2014

Post by ken_r » Mon Feb 10, 2014 1:02 pm

Roswelllostcause: Remember that Isabel is untrusting and very unsure of what or who she wants.

keepsmiling7:

LuckyMiss: Earthinglings are one there by choice, one taken in a slave raid, one seen as a danger to the state and finally, Alex, someone who is truly disappointed with the World Government.

begonia9508: Feelings of romance and sex are highly cultural. They have sentiment, but they show feelings in different ways.

Natalie36: Liz and Alex are in similar situations, they are both under contract with the monarchy.

HypnotiqBlueEyes: Isabel is a proper Antarian princess.



Chapter 10

It was time for the second social meeting with those of Antar four. Liz had already made a promise to herself that she would be very careful how she left the side of the king. Kyle would be with Tess and Isabel and Max was sure that as a body guard Kyle had made his bones.

Alex had yet to meet the woman he was to be working for. So far, he had worked with the king’s assistant, Liz and she had been guiding him through the maze of Antarian law and society. Max came in and asked Alex to come into his office. “Alex, I am asking you to escort my sister to the meeting coming up. You are responsible to me for her protection. The royal transport will pick you up and take you to meet her at my compound and then, take you to the affair. It is a formal affair and Liz will see to it that you have the proper clothes. There has already been an attempt on Isabel’s life and that of the political slave, Tess. Their bodyguard stopped this and secured their safety. Please note that as the trial of the daughter of Antar Four grows closer to an end and the matter of their election approaches, I expect them to step up their attempts at assault.”

Talk about butterflies, this was the lady that when the king felt he had enough training, Alex was to work for. She had already been the object of an assault. Now, Alex understood his training and exercises in the Antarian war ship.

Back on Earth, the spacers, the Men not of this Earth, were looked upon as gods, except that the world government didn’t allow gods. Now, Alex was told that they had problems like any culture and government.

The clothes Liz had set out for him were not too different from what might be worn on Earth to a formal occasion. Alex was dressed and nervously waiting as two Antarian guards came for him. They drove out of the city to the king’s compound. The two guards opened the car door for him and followed him to the mansion door. Alex knocked and a butler opened the door. He ushered the three of them in and indicated them to take a seat on a bench that Alex was sure was used for that purpose. The bench must be a place those waiting to interview the royals sat while they were announced.

Five people came down the stairs. Leading was the princess. She wore a gown, which hung from her pert breasts. It was not full, but clung to her curves to show them off. It was white lace over some other white cloth. The next couple, the woman hanging onto the man’s arm with both hands, both wore slave bracelets. The woman was dressed similarly to the princess, but the man wore a black turtleneck shirt and a dark grey coat over black cargo pants, definitely not formal wear. The last couple approaching were a man in a dress uniform of a soldier of high command with the woman of gold, wearing a slave bracelet hanging on his arm. Her golden dress was slit high enough for Alex to see her golden shear stockings going up her thighs.

Liz had tried to explain this slave thing, but Alex still had too many Earth conceptions to rid himself of. They all stood as the butler taking Isabel’s hand and placing it in Alex’s, announced, “May I present the sister of the king, Isabel.”

Alex bowed slightly and said; “I think, eventually I am to work for you as soon as the king thinks my training is complete.”

Isabel gave him a smile, her brown eyes, sometimes hard, softened a little. She took his arm and they returned to the vehicle. There were six seats in the vehicle and Alex and Isabel took the farthest one back. Kyle and Tess took the seat facing them while Michael and his girl took the middle seat. Alex noticed that Michael always held Maria at a distance from any group. He made a note to ask Liz if she knew why.

Kyle started the conversation. “Alex, how far in Earth’s educational system did you go?”

“I went all the way and was working with the dons,” Alex explained.

“Then why did you leave?” Kyle inquired.

“I was trained in law. There wasn’t any law. All pronouncements were by executive order. I was a defender and I tried to fight for those I felt were treated unfairly. It didn’t matter. A man’s fate was always decided before any court appearance. I couldn’t take that duplicity. I thought the system I did not know had to be better than the system I knew and strongly disliked. I received an invitation to interview and here I am. I am working for the king and soon to be working for the princess,” with that, Alex looked to Isabel. She, as a true princess, made no expression at all.

After that, they mostly rode in silence. Alex had time to reason. The princess held on to his arm as he was her escort. Tess held on to Kyle like she feared someone would take him away from her. They were both wearing slave bracelets, so maybe, that was her reason. Michael held on to Maria as if he worried she might escape someway. This was strange because Maria also wore a slave bracelet and clearly belonged to Michael. There were many things going on that Alex clearly didn’t understand.

At the place where the diplomatic gathering was taking place, Alex got out first and taking Isabel’s arm, they entered the ballroom. From a distance, he saw Tess and Kyle, but when they entered the ballroom, Tess quickly dropped Kyle’s arm and he stood close to her with both arms free, like a soldier looking for a fight, Alex thought. Michael was standing at the edge of the crowd watching the king. Maria was loosely holding his arm, but Alex was sure that she would drop her hold if Michael was to spring into action. The king’s people were not at a party, they were at a prize fight. Everyone was waiting to see who started it.

“Come on, Alex,” Isabel whispered.

She led them to the center of a large group. There was one grand dame talking. “I don’t see why the king doesn’t hurry the traitor’s trial. She committed treason so be done with her. She is a distraction to our negotiations about our own monarchy,” the elder lady viciously stated.

As they passed by, Isabel whispered to Alex, “They are talking about the girl waiting to be executed. Her own people provoked her to violence and now are disowning her and leaving her to be executed.”

They moved until they were within hearing distance of the king. Alex saw that Liz was standing beside him. “Why can’t we have the elections now? Why do have to wait until so much later?” one elder statesman asked to no one in particular, but aimed at the monarchy in general.

“You deposed your leaders in violence and executed them. That is why I want to wait until things cool down to let your people decide what they really want,” Max replied.

“Who cares what the rabble want? We want to establish a legitimate government and we want to do it now,” the statesman stated.

“The girl, Rulian, shows that there is still violence against some of your people. Someone instigated a direct assault against the king,” Max said.

“We disavow Rulian. Destroy her. Even her family says she worked alone,” the statesman cried.

Max smiled, “My friend, you would have better been a comedian than a statesman. No girl like Rulian could act alone.”

When Liz went to the lady’s room, Tess and Isabel walked with her.

Standing alone while Isabel was gone, a man walked up to Alex. “Earthman, what is your purpose here?” he blurted out.

“They made me promise not to kill anyone, tonight. So you better leave before I break my promise,” Alex replied feeling a certain bit of bravado.

“You insolent barbarian, I could burn you to a crisp,” the man said as he raised his hand.

Kyle, ever vigilant walked behind and quickly taking the upraised hand, with one quick stroke he broke it. “I don’t think you can do much with a broken hand,” he said as those who followed the speaker carried him to a place where he could receive medical attention.

Most of those gathered were civil. The diplomats from Antar Four were pushing good manners and good sense. Kyle had already broken the one diplomat’s hand. Max saw that the actions of the hot heads from Antar Four were their own worst enemies. Most of the planetary governments did not want a rival monarchy in their vicinity. After delivering Kyle, the Isabella II was still in near space. Max was working up a plan.

---------------------

After the party, It was suggested that Alex move into an apartment within the king’s house. Max explained that Alex had been hired to advise and protect the sister of the king and he could accomplish this better living at the compound. Liz had gotten Alex pretty well straightened out with regard to Antarian law. Alex had many suggestions to make as soon as the king had time to consider them. The longer he remained on Antar, the better he liked it. Here, he was challenged to find ways to help a civilization. The king even appeared to be willing to hear them. Back home he would have spent years as a flunky expecting to loose and be a good sport. The most he could have hoped for was that, someday, he would be just like the rest of them. Fleeing Earth, Alex was advised that there was a warrant for his arrest. Alex was charged with the fraudulent use of Educational funds, that was the expense of his education by the state.

Like Kyle, when brought to the compound, Alex first saw the golden slave girl. The pilot of the transport laughed, “Careful, bub, Let the king’s second see you looking at her and your contract could be canceled permanently.”

With this, Alex knew that he would have to be a quick study of proper etiquette within the compound. The king had that assistant. She helped Alex in everything else; maybe, she could give him advice. Alex didn’t know what the relationship was between the assistant and the king, but apparently, she was someone who could be approached.

Alex knocked on the apartment he had been told was Liz’s. She quickly came to the door and Alex had a great surprise. In the office, Liz was always dressed in suit jacket with matching skirt and a white blouse. Alex had admired her trim legs as he watched her walk about the office. What ever the stockings of women on Antar was made of, it only enhanced the natural beauty of their legs. The Liz he saw now, was dressed in loose-fitting slacks and an oversized pullover shirt. Alex noticed her bare feet were in some sort of slippers. “What can I do for you, Alex?” she asked.

“I need some assistance as to who I can approach and who is strictly off limits,” Alex stated.

Liz laughed, “Yes it gets pretty complicated.”

“The pilot of the transport which brought me here told me that the golden slave girl just outside the main house was strictly off limits even to gaze at,” Alex explained.

Liz nodded. “Yes, she belongs to Michael, the king’s second. He is pretty protective towards her. She is a slave girl from Earth and when I was in school, we were best friends. Michael lets her come to see me sometimes, but not enough for either of us. She is a singer and songwriter. If you wish, I will try to find a safe time for you to meet her. She is a fascinating woman.”

“That would be nice, but I don’t want any trouble. Whom else, can I approach?” he asked.

“Well, there is the king’s sister, Isabel. She appears very cold, but that is only until she gets to know you. You are going to be working with her so she should be high on your list. I would suggest that you send her a note that you would like to join her in her morning exercise. That is when she would be the easiest to approach. Then, there is her slave girl, Teresa, known as Tess. Tess is very easy to talk to. Isabel has given her a lover, another slave from Earth, Kyle. You met Kyle the other night. He is a soldier and very fast to anger. He has killed two Antarians who breached our compound. I don’t think he is like Michael. Kyle might show anger if he thought you were taking Tess away from him, but I don’t think talking would bother him. Tess is involved with the situation on Antar Four. Her family sold her into slavery to pay off a dept. The reining family, now, is the one who executed Tess’s family. Normally, Kyle is an easygoing guy. If you have questions he might be open to information,” Liz related.

“And, you are you available to talk to?” Alex asked.

Liz laughed. “Sometimes, but remember I am at the call of the king. When I am not with him, I guess it is my time to spend. Talk is all I can give. Anything else might compromise my position with the king.”

“Alex nodded, “Well, maybe, I should sign up for that early morning run. I will send the king’s sister a request immediately.”

Liz had to smile as he left. He wanted so badly to please. Sometime maybe, the Earthlings should get together and share their separate stories.

The workouts on the spaceship had kept Alex in good shape. That hadn’t been always true. On Earth, Alex had been a geek and avoided physical exercise. On the spaceship, bodybuilding had been a requirement for him. Now, Alex was glad of all the pain he had spent getting into shape.

At the appointed time, Alex was waiting at the front door to the mansion. He still wasn’t sure what to call it, house, palace, mansion or as many of those at the house called it, the main house. Kyle and Tess had outfitted Alex in running shorts, shoes and jacket. When Isabel came out, a nod was all she gave. Isabel immediately started on her run. Alex was sure that she was testing him and running faster than she usually did. What Alex didn’t know was that Isabel had told Tess and Kyle to take their run earlier. She wanted to evaluate Alex alone. The main house and the outlaying buildings were in the middle of the compound. To the front where the gate was located, there were many low hills. Once behind the main group of buildings, the area was wooded. Alex noticed that crossing in every direction were foot trails. He, also, saw several unimproved roads mostly at the perimeter of the compound. Alex imagined that the roads were for security patrol and emergency. Isabel chose a path that headed toward the front gate and thus through the hills. Before they got to the front fence, she changed direction and taking another trail, headed back to the forested area. Once she found she couldn’t shake Alex, Isabel settled down to a steady pace.

Alex, a student of history, had a rudimentary knowledge of Geology or, in this case, the study of the land of Antar. The hills were all covered in vegetation, but there were no outcroppings of rock. As they left the hills to one side of the main house, Alex figured it out. The hills, the forest he imagined were all man made. Where Earth had been a young planet, Antar was old. If you wanted hills, you had to make them. If you wanted forest you had to plant them. At the first chance, Alex was going to request a tour of other parts of Antar.

In the shade of the forest, Isabel stopped and reaching behind a bush, she removed two cool bottles of some liquid and threw one to Alex. “At least you aren’t a wimp,” she stated

“You were expecting the king would hire a wimp to guard his sister?” Alex returned.

Alex was expecting a teasing retort, but suddenly Isabel became quiet. Then, Alex realized that to answer his question could be seen as criticizing the king, Isabel would almost have to commit treason. You didn’t lightly belittle a decision of the king in this world. Finally, she said quietly, “I am sure that any decision my brother made, was well thought out and investigated.”

Isabel slowly, still holding her bottle of drink, started walking. Alex quickly fell in with her. “If we are to work together, what am I to call you? Do you prefer your highness, m’lady, Princess Isabel or what?” he asked.

“For the moment, Isabel will do fine. We gave up high-sounding titles long ago. Remind me, exactly what are you too do for me?” she asked.

“Back on Earth, I was trained in law and the history of law. On the way here, I was given intensive bodybuilding and defense instructions. The king’s assistant, Liz, has been bringing me up to speed on Antarian law. I suppose that I am to advise you in legal matters and to protect your person in other matters,” Alex explained.

“I have two slaves in my household. I would like your assistance to be extended to them, also,” Isabel’s request sounding like a question waiting to see if he could comply.

“Of course, I would like to interview them sometime to see how I can be of service,” Alex answered.

They came to a waste disposal and both of them finished off their drinks, deposited the bottles and then picked up the pace going back to the main building.

Back in the building they parted company with a cursory nod and both went to their respective apartments. Alex showered and started exploring again. He knocked on Liz’s apartment door, but she must have been at their office with the king. Looking out the front door, Alex saw the golden slave. He remembered what Liz and the pilot had both said. He would have to know Michael a lot better before he sat and conversed with his woman.
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

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ken_r
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Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 10, pg6 Feb 10, 2014

Post by ken_r » Mon Feb 17, 2014 12:53 pm

Author's note: I hope some of you read SER's story, My Darling One Last Valentine . The older i get the sweeter this story is. Carole and I know the at least one of us must in a few years make the choice to let go.

Roswelllostcause:

Natalie36:

HupnotiqBlueEyes: Remember Love for Liz and Max will be difficult. He is the king and she has been only a scholar all of her life.

Begonia9508:

Keepsmilint7: Both Earth and Antar are dying. Earth is entering a dark age and Antar has had too many years of war. It is hoped that mixing the cultures will build up Antar and they might be able to rescue Earth.

L-J-L 76: See what I said to BlueEyes above. Liz do\es have a destiny if she can find it.


Chapter 11

Like the other Earth people, Alex had trouble with the concept and word “slave.” Alex didn’t have a big enough sample yet, but so far the slave owners took a lot of responsibility of their slaves. It wasn’t all economic either. Between Isabel and her slaves there was a genuine care that they were part of her family. Alex would like to talk to Liz sometime about this. Liz said that Tess would be open to conversation so Alex decided to give her a visit.

Tess came to the door. “Kyle is not in, if that is who your came to see,” she explained.

“No, I really want to talk to you,” Alex stated.

The little blond shrugged. “Come in, can I get you something to drink?” she said as a good host.

“No, I just want to find out some things,” Alex stated.

“I imagine you do. All Earthlings ask the same question,” Tess said.

“And what is that?” Alex asked.

“You don’t understand our concept of slavery. You have too much of your own history to understand and too little knowledge of your present history to see that you do the same thing under different definitions,” Tess said. “To start with, Antar has nothing like what you call welfare. You must have a position, that is some occupation or be part of a family. If you do not have blood ties to this family, then there must be a contract that holds you to be responsible to wishes of someone in this family. That contract also gives the family responsibilities to care for you. Many times, that contract is entered for a specific period of time and it carefully spells out your contractual obligations. You have this sort of contract, so does Liz. Other times, you enter into the care of a family not exactly from your choice. Sometimes, it is payment for an obligation. Sometimes it is to hold a family to an obligation, a person is given as a pledge for some deed that is requested from a family. Sometimes, it is only a chance of fortune, which places you in the care of a family. I am held by Isabel for a tremendous debt that my family grew, over several generations. Now even if that debt had been paid, I would still be held, because my family was executed and there is no place for me back on Antar Four.

“I hear all about slaves from Earth. I believe that the golden singer just outside the main house is an example,” Alex said.

“Yes, she is. We have small populations on Antar and many of the other planets, probably the results of thousands of years of war. Earth, on the other hand, has a surplus population, much of it very indolent. Earth is heading for dark ages unless something happens to change its direction. We take contractees like you and Liz, but we also buy humans, declared surplus by the Earth government. Many times, these people are those who have failed Earth’s education system. These are people who would not necessarily see advantages immigrating to a new world. Maria was a part of a large purchase of applied art and fine art students. Earth would no longer support their arts and was willing to consign them, adding them to the indolent masses. We paid a fee, a bribe if you will, to harvest students who we felt had talent. These students were sold to families who wanted to preserve these talents. The only term we have for them is slaves. They have security and position in our society. From what we know of Earth, they will receive better care and be given more chance to practice their arts than would ever have happened on Earth.

“You stated that we do the same thing on earth. We rid ourselves of slavery long ago,” Alex proudly proclaimed.

“Not really,” Tess began. Someone should include a booklet in the immigration packet. “The Earth prison system is a hold over from the days of slavery as are the bounty hunters who enforce it. Your whole educational system is forced slavery along with the military. When you have students picking up trash and painting out the graffiti or soldiers cuttings the generals lawn and washing his car, you are using forced labor. Michael’s girl, Maria, was trained to be a singer. Thousands of women were trained to be musicians. How many musicians does Earth need? Only a handful, so only the best of the best of the best make it. Those who fail fall back into equality where their lives are carefully prescribed by the government. Isn’t that slavery? Maria and her classmates were sold off by the Earth government as being surplus. If they hadn’t been sold they would have ended up in the masses of equality and been a burden on the system their whole lives, their whole education wasted. They would never have been given opportunities to reach their potential. If you meet Maria now and hear her sing, you would think she should have made her dream all the way. She sounds great because Antarian training looked at her abilities and trained them. Her classes on Earth only tested her until failure. You have met Liz, the king’s assistant. Be assured that the king would have only taken her if she had been the best. Liz had a break down her last year and she was heading for failure,” Tess explained.

“How about you. You are a slave. Don’t you wish for freedom?” Alex asked.

Tess answered a little crossly. “For two generations my family ran our government into huge dept. From infancy I knew that I would be sold to help repay the debt. The only thing being sold did was remove me before they executed my whole family. I am of the household of the king. The princess has found me a good lover in Kyle, so I am happy. My cousin is in prison for treason against the king. She is waiting to see if she is condemned to slavery or executed. Her family are the ones who executed my family,” Tess explained.

“I made it through the system. I graduated to practice law. So I am proof it can be done,” Alex proclaimed.

“Yes, but you were bored with the system. The system still didn’t give you a chance to explore your potential. You took a contract to a place which is totally strange, rather than endure the slavery of doing what was required of you, Alex, you took a chance to find something different,” Tess stated.

“It was my choice. Can you say the same of your condition? What if you chose to run away?” Alex asked.

“Where would I run? Antar has no welfare. You only eat if you work. Here I have a job. I am the assistant to the sister of the king. With my lover,
Kyle, I may be able to raise a family. The word slave is just a word. It limits what I can do without permission, like a person on Earth who wants to represent people fairly. You found there are limits in what you could do,” Tess ended. It would take many more talks before Alex could understand.

Alex needed to talk to Isabel. Walking to her apartment, Alex heard a noise. If Isabel was entertaining a visitor, it might not be a good time to call on her. The apartments of the main building of the king had no need for locks. Alex heard a yelp of pain and he reached for the door handle. What if Isabel was playing some sort of sex game? Isabel had been called a coquet, a flirt and other things suggesting that she did not take relationships seriously. Alex didn’t know much about the social activities of these Antarians, … yet. He heard, “No, no,” that was enough. Alex opened the door and saw Isabel holding the arms of a strange man. They appeared to be fighting and the man’s hands were sparking. Alex heard that Antarians had some powers with which they could direct bolts of energy. He wasn’t anywhere near to understanding this, yet. The look on her face was not a look of play. If he made a mistake, he would apologize later.

Alex saw a burn on her face that badly marred the fair skin of the princess. Quickly moving behind the intruder, at least that is what Alex had decided he must be, Alex got him in a head/neck hold. The flaying hands were setting fires everywhere in the apartment. One flash went past Alex’s own cheek and Alex felt the pain. Okay, now, it was personal. Alex pushed the man’s body one way and pulled his head another. There was a loud crack and the man fell limp. At least the skeletal anatomy of Antarians was similar to what Alex knew. The months of personal defense while coming from Earth had paid off.

Isabel was in great pain, but she looked at Alex and saw that his cheek was, likewise, burned. They needed the king. Isabel ran to Tess’s door and started hammering on it. Tess came out and seeing the horrible burn on Isabel immediately sent word that there was immediate need of the king.

Liz answered the call and went to the room where Michael and Max were conducting secret meetings. The orders were strict that they couldn’t be disturbed. Guards jumped to stop Liz, but she wiggled away from them. In the room, she saw Michael in uniform, Max and two other military persons. Max looked up and shouted, “Liz what is the meaning of this?”

Liz was breathless, she was trying to speak and having trouble. The two guards grabbed her, but the king raised his hand. “Liz, again what is the meaning of this?” Max said less harshly.

“Max, the main house has been breached,” Liz choked out. “Isabel and Alex are wounded.”

Michael was already out the door. “Air transport, Mike,” Max shouted.

Someone Liz had never seen before was fitting Michael with a pressure suit. “Liz,” Max called. “Air transport would be too hard on you. Get a ground transporter and tell the driver he has the will of the king.” The last Liz saw of him, he was being squeezed into a pressure suit as well.

One of the guards, who minutes before, had been trying to stop Liz was now holding her arm as they hurried through the office building. Just as they got to the sidewalk, a uniformed pilot pulled to the curb. Liz heard the guard shout, “She has the will of the king.” Before she had even settled in the transport, it was flying along the streets. Liz had always felt that the transport in the mornings was fast, but now the streets cleared and it took half the time it usually did to make it to the gates. The transport was stopped and Liz leaned out, “I am on business of the king,” she cried. She was quickly identified and in minutes they were at the main house. Liz saw Michael in front of his apartment holding Maria.

As Liz ran down the hall she heard Alex arguing with Max. “Max, take care of Isabel first. I was hurt worse than this playing dodge ball back in school.”

Both patients were lying on the bed in Isabel’s room and Max was working with glowing hands and Liz saw the horrible skin and burns slowly melt away. Liz heard Max say to Alex as he moved to the other side of the bed, “You got to look me in the eye, Alex. I have to tell your body how to repair itself.”

Liz saw Isabel reach up to touch her cheek and wince as she felt the tender spot. To all appearances, she was healed. There was just a little nerve damage that had to grow back. Liz looked around the room and saw several burned spots. The room was a wreck. Max was rubbing his hands, so Liz thought that there must be some pain on his part, also. “Izzy, I want you, along with Tess and Kyle, to move into other apartments. The staff is already preparing them. Alex there will be a third bedroom so I would like you to move into that apartment.”

Liz saw Alex nod. Then, Kyle came in. “Max, they came in on a delivery truck. The driver is pretty beat up and I think the other person ran away into the forest. We are already organizing search parties.” Kyle, then, went to Tess and held her tightly.

“Take me to the driver,” Max ordered. He would heal the man, but he also would carefully search his mind to see if he was hiding anything.

Liz’s apartment was close to that of Max. She saw that he increased the security in their wing, also.

Well, the three people who could give Alex the most knowledge were with him in the same apartment. Alex asked, “Do you think Michael’s woman is in more danger.”

Kyle spoke up slowly. “I talked to Michael, there are going to be some changes soon, so I am sure her safety will be most important.”

Alex was tired so he went to his room early. Late that evening he felt someone was sitting there with him. When he sat up, he heard Isabel’s voice. “Don’t Earthlings feel pain?” she asked.

Alex shook his head. “Of course, we do. Why do you ask?”

“I knew that Max would bring me relief, but I figured that you didn’t know that. Why did you insist that Max work on me first?” Isabel asked.

Alex answered in bravado, “You are so beautiful and that burn worried me so much. If I was scarred, I would just use the scar for bar stories about the time I saved a maiden and killed the giant. That has to be good for a few drinks anytime.”

“That is not the real Alex talking,” Isabel whispered.

“Isabel, the real Alex is no more. For you, I will climb mountains and fight monsters. Max hired me to protect you. Now, I will do it because I love you. You don’t have to return this love, I will still be your champion,” Alex declared. At the moment he felt that would be more than enough. He was to learn that love craves return.

“I heard that you were asking Tess about slavery,” Isabel said.

“Yes, I am still trying to figure titles and positions here on Antar,” Alex responded.

“Alex, slave is just a name. It locates your position within the family. It limits what you are allowed to do. There are many other names, which do the same thing. Right now, you might think that the title of ‘sister to the king’ gave me special privileges. It does, but it, also, made me a target for that intruder and that is the second one we have faced recently,” Isabel explained.

Alex saw that Isabel wanted more. She had come into his room and he was sure that it was for more than to ask if humans felt pain. Alex had hopes, but he also had insecurities. The only thing to do was to wait for her to speak. “Alex, I tried to take Kyle to my bed. That would have been a sin. Tess desperately loved him from the first time she saw him. I saw Kyle as a mighty warrior, but he belonged to her. Tess is a slave, but she bleeds like anyone else and her heart is just as fragile. Maybe, I could take you to bed if you would be willing to try.”

Try? That was the greatest understatement. In Alex’s mind the most unapproachable woman of many worlds had just invited him to make love to her. The gown, even though thin and not that covering was still a barrier between the public Isabel and the private Isabel, who she was now to be, for him. As Alex raised the gown, he felt her body shudder. Alex hoped that the involuntary movement wasn’t in dread of giving her self to him. He didn’t know that the shudder was Isabel coming to a place in her life where she was approaching a change. Isabel had not taken a lover for many years. Before, when she was very young, the lovers came to her and tried all sorts of seductions. Now, It was Isabel offering the favors of her body to this stranger from Earth.

Alex wasn’t a great lover, but he was an ardent lover. To be held, to be cherished, that was what Isabel had always wanted. The Earthling only had a twenty-year contract. Those twenty years could be wonderful., especially, if someone loves you. Isabel would hold on to that thought for a while. Later she would convince herself that twenty years was too short and draw away.
---------------------------
Stories by Ken
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

User avatar
ken_r
Obsessed Roswellian
Posts: 860
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:34 pm
Location: New Mexico

Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 11, pg7 Feb 17, 2014

Post by ken_r » Sun Feb 23, 2014 1:00 pm

LuckyMiss: Social Anthropology shows that there are only so many way people can be organized. One of the threads is that Antar's slavery isn't that much different from large corporate employment

Roswelllostcause:

Keepsmiling7:

begonia9508: One thing i found in police training is that courage is the belief that you can do great things. Of course a bit of body building also helped Alex rise from "dodge ball."

HypnotiqqBlueEyes: The head which wears the crown is always a target for those who want it.



Chapter 12

Every afternoon Maria would wait for Michael to return. Maria still felt lonesome for company. Michael had arranged a few times for her to visit her friend Liz. Of course in Maria’s mind those times were never long enough or often enough. In Maria’s mind, that was what it was to be a slave, a slave, isn’t allowed to fulfill desires, of his or her own. Then, Maria remembered that once when she was a free student, they had taken her friend Liz away. Maybe, Tess and Isabel were right, was the slavery she lived with now that different from her life back at school? Things were still being done to her.

Maria knew something was up. Michael and Max had been having private meetings almost every day. Maria had grown into the habit of wearing just Michael’s long shirt and before and after dinner Michael would sit and listen to her singing and playing. Sometimes, he took the guitar, placing it carefully on a shelf, then, leading her to the couch or their bedroom for love play.

Michael’s moods had become more morose and intense recently. Maria wondered if these times were what Isabel and Tess warned her about. This afternoon, Michael didn’t say a thing. He just approached Maria and quickly removed the shirt she wore. He dropped his pants and stepped out of his shorts. The intensity of Michael’s actions didn’t even make it to the couch. Michael pulled Maria to him and forced her to the floor. For a while his hands, his mouth and his organ did all his talking. No matter what he did, Michael didn’t seem to get enough of her. When they came up for air, hearts in both of them were racing. “I hope I didn’t hurt you,” were the first words Michael said as they came up for breath.

These actions were not usual for Michael, but Maria had endured worse back on the slave ship. If there had been physical damage, the slaver would take action, here her love for Michael made any discomfort unimportant.

Michael was holding her too tightly, but Maria sensed there must be reasons for this action. Michael swept her up in his arms and carried her into their bedroom. Here, he properly removed all of his clothes and carefully lay down beside her. Michael completely forgot about supper. He made love to Maria over and over. Finally, they both fell asleep. Maria woke with Michael’s hand caressing her body. This was not usual either for Michael. Normally, Michael would arise early and go on a run, on returning he would shower and call her out of bed. After a quick breakfast, he would depart to meet with Max. Their apartment was in the compound, but not in the king’s residence. Security was fairly tight, but recently, Maria had seen Michael paying more and more attention to the safety of their home.

Michael’s attitude, his actions all led to Maria believing that something big was going to happen. Michael stood up and looked out the window. Maria grabbed a robe about herself and stood beside him. Michael didn’t go into the city and Max’s office this day.

After breakfast, Michael removed her robe and led her back into their shower. Maria quickly saw that cleanliness was not the issue, rather Michael was taking great pleasure in the touch of her body. After drying off the old fashioned way with towels, not using the warm air blast as usual, Michael guided Maria back to their bed.

After an exhausting time, Maria asked, “Michael don’t you have to go to the city to see Max?”

“No, I have a few days off and I am going to spend them right here,” was his short answer.

For a long time, Michael traced the curves of her body as one trying to memorize everything about it. Eventually, Michael stood. Maria never tired of looking at his tall, strong body. Michael retrieved the guitar and handing it to her, without even putting on a robe, Michael sank into a chair and ordered, “Play for me, I think you call them Gaelic songs,”

“Michael I just know them by rote, I have no idea of what they mean,” Maria explained.

“That is all right, Maria, play them until they are engraved in my mind so I might never forget them,” Michael commanded.

This scared Maria a lot. Was something going to happen that she was to be removed from Michael? For some reason was she to be sold? Maria’s mind always looked for the worst in life. The only really good thing that had happened was that she had been given to Michael. With a trembling voice, Maria started to sing. As she sang, Maria tried to study Michael’s face. He remained so still he might have been a statue. When Maria ran out of the Gaelic songs of Ireland, she played the French songs. Again she had no idea of what they meant, the tone of the music made them seem sad and pleading.

Michael did break for supper this time. He handed Maria a robe and selected one for himself. He said little during the meal. Usually Maria kept up a banter of questions, anecdotes and gossip she got from the household staff or maybe stories about herself and Liz when they were children. Come to think of it, she hadn’t seen any of the household staff all day. Was their absence related to whatever was bothering Michael. This evening Maria was almost as quiet as was Michael.

Maria was trying to read what Michael would want this evening. On finishing supper, Michael took Maria by the hand and led her back into the bedroom and they made love until they both collapsed in sleep.

As Maria drifted off to sleep, she thought, “Yes, this was totally different from the men she serviced on the ship, especially this last two nights.” Michael had been very insistent at what he wanted. He had been firmer in his handling of Maria than ever before. It wasn’t that he hurt her, but his body didn’t seem to be able to get enough of her. There were visions and these scared Maria more than anything. Through blurred eyes, Maria saw, as from the command deck, the destruction of a planet. She saw or maybe felt the souls of the population as they fled past her ship. Then it was as if she stepped back and she saw Michael standing in front of the view screen watching through his own tears as the repeated blast broke the planet. The blasts disrupted the planet’s crust so that the magma from its center flowed across the lands. This must be part of the darkness of Michael’s soul that Isabel had told her about. No man on the slave ship had shared such deep secrets, as did Michael now. No man before had ever needed her to hold him as he fought to find his equilibrium. No matter what she felt before, Maria knew that now she wasn’t a whore. She was what Isabel and Tess had hoped for. Maria was the one person who might save Michael from his dark moods. What she was willing to do for Michael was pretty close to love.

The next day was more of the same. Maria sang, they made love, broke for meals and then went back to making love. After the love making following supper, Maria reached for her guitar. Michael quickly took it away and sat her down on the bed. “Maria, I have to go away for, maybe, a long time,” he started to explain.

Sitting, naked on their bed, Maria couldn’t help but tremble. She quickly looked at Michael’s likewise naked body, but his libido was at rest. Was this the fear that had been growing? “Are you coming back?” was all she could think to ask.

“I hope to, but the life of a soldier is always in doubt. This is why I never had any strong relations with any woman. Before I never had anything to loose, but now, the fear of loosing you is very great,” he stated.

“Will I be able to run the house while you are gone?” Maria timidly asked.

“No, and it has become much too dangerous to leave you here, that is why I have made arrangements,” Michael told her.

“Arrangements, what are they?” Maria asked.

“Isabel holds your papers. By all accounts, Isabel and her slave Tess are already in much danger. Alex and Kyle have all they can do to protect them. You were given to me as a present and I am going on that assumption. I am giving you to the king until I return. The king can use you as he wishes in my absence; you are to obey him in all things,” Michael stated.

Maria trembled. Her love life with Michael was almost like she imagined marriage, back on Earth. Well, back on Earth she imagined they would have had more bickering. “Will the king expect me to sleep with him?” she asked in a quavering voice.

Michael was very serious. “Maria, if the king orders you to his bed, you will go and go cheerfully. When I am here, I can protect you. When I am gone, someone must care enough about you to do what I can’t. Then, Michael gave a little laugh. “I don’t imagine the king will be looking too closely at you. I think he has his eye on somebody else.”

Even in a state of complete terror, Maria was always ripe to hear a nice piece of gossip. She looked up at Michael, “The king has his eye on somebody, who?” she asked.

“His assistant, Liz. Isabel and Tess both say that they notice him looking at her with dreamy eyes when he thinks Liz doesn’t see him,” Michael whispered, letting Maria know that this was an open and not too well kept secret.

“When I last saw Liz, she didn’t say anything to me,” Maria stated.

“I doubt if Liz even knows it. Isabel says that Liz is so busy taking care of the king; she probably doesn’t see that he is starting to care for her. I wouldn’t say anything if I were you. Let this play out naturally,” Michael said as he kissed Maria.

“How dangerous is it where you are going?” Maria asked looking into his face. She knew that soldiers would minimize danger, but she wanted to know the truth.

“I am taking the warship Isabella II to Antar Four. The king has ordered me to become the regent until their government settles down. The Isabella II is one of the ‘front of the line’ spacers. I will have a large number of men at my disposal and the king hopes that the show of force will put down their rebellion. If anything happens, I have already made arrangements that you not be put back on the auction block. Max is to keep you within the family. I don’t think life with the king will be too bad. He will ask little of you and give you all his protection. That is why you must promise to do anything he orders. As soon as I can get some semblance of calm in their government, I will return,” Michael concluded.

Maria had only one more question, “When do you leave?”

“Tomorrow, as soon as I have you moved into the king’s house,” Michael said.

“Then we have no time to waste,” Maria firmly stated as she leaned toward Michael and soon, once again, their bodies were mutually one.

Michael was already dressed in his uniform when he woke Maria from a deep sleep. “Shower and get dressed. Your things are already moved to the main house,” he directed. As he took her arm they walked the short distance to the main house. “The king will inform you what he expects. Do what he orders and I will be home as soon as I can and as safely as I can.

------------------------

Max had wakened Liz very early. They drove to his office without a word. As soon as he was there, he called her into his private office, the one she had crashed into with the news of Isabel being hurt.

“Liz, sit down. I have very important orders for you. These secret meetings have been to prepare to send Michael as the regent to Antar Four. It is way too dangerous to take Maria with him so he asked that the papers held by Isabel be left with me. Michael’s request was for me to do with her, what I thought was best. Isabel is her registered owner, but Isabel and Tess are having a lot of trouble themselves. They seem to be in great danger. It is my decision that you shall hold her papers,” Max explained.

Liz was stunned for several minutes. Sending Michael off was expected. The pressures on Antar Four demanded attention. Liz hadn’t even thought what was to become of Maria. Left alone, Maria had no protection at all. A slave had to have someone responsible for them. Otherwise, they had no status. “Max, what am I supposed to do? Maria is my best friend; how can I be her owner?” Liz asked.

“Think of it as your best friend is now your room-mate,” Max stated.

At first, when Maria moved into her new apartment she saw that it already was occupied. Two new rooms had been opened up for her things. No one else was around so Maria did a bit of snooping. Maria hadn’t been around Liz much since school, but she sensed something in the order, the choice of books and she was sure that she was sharing with Liz. If she was it was because of the order of the king. The few times she had been with Liz since they both came to Antar had been held in a common room that was reserved for guests. Maria was still frightened about loosing Michael. What would it be like to live with Liz?

Finally it sunk in. The king must have passed the responsibility of Maria on to his assistant, Liz. Maria wasn’t living with Liz, she was Liz’s property until the king released her back to Michael. They were kids before and Liz had always led Maria. Liz was always a better student and she helped Maria to succeed. Liz was still leading, but with a difference. Liz was Maria’s boss. What would Liz be like to work for? Take that back, Liz wasn’t Maria’s boss Liz was Maria’s owner. Liz had always said that Maria gave her permission to dream. Maria wasn’t too sure what that meant, but it was something about their friendship that Liz valued. What would Liz be like when everything in Maria’s life depended on Liz? That was still a question?

In times of trouble, Maria was always her own worst enemy. By the time Liz got back to her apartment, Maria had driven herself into a funk. Liz opened the door, “Maria, are you here?” she called.

Maria entered from her quarters. “Yes, m’lady. What do you want of me?” she quietly asked.

“Maria, it is Liz, your best friend. Please don’t act like that,” Liz begged.

“Can you be my best friend and my owner at the same time?” Maria asked.

“Maria, Tess and Isabel do it. Why can’t we?” Liz asked.

“Maybe they have had more practice. I was just getting used to belonging to Michael,” Maria said.

“Maria, don’t make it this hard. Max put us together because he thought I could help you through Michael’s absence. I actually find this experience very frightening,” Liz said.

“You find it frightening! I am the one who must bow down to your orders,” Maria almost sobbed.

“Maria, the only reason you bowed down to Michael was to get his attention and make love. The only orders I have are from the king. We both have to follow them,” Liz stated. Liz walked to Maria and lifted her head so she could look into her face. Maria’s eyes were red and her face streaked with tears. She had been crying most of the afternoon. First Michael had left and being a soldier, Maria believed that he would be in great danger. Then, her friendship with Liz was upset by Liz being, her de facto owner. Maria was still crying when Liz placed her arms around her and pulled her close.

Maria had her own two rooms in their apartment. Both She and Liz left their bedroom doors open in case Maria had more trouble than she had expected. Liz did hear Maria cry herself to sleep and when Liz finally dropped off, she had troubled dreams. Maria wasn’t a morning person. She didn’t know it, but normally Michael had been on his run, worked out for an hour or so before he slipped back into their room to shower. He woke Maria up and usually; she sat in a robe as they had breakfast together. After he left, Maria would shower and pick out what she was to do with the rest of the day. This morning, Liz’s wake up call was not appreciated. At first, Maria thought of refusing, but her memory kicked in and she knew that she had to do what Liz ordered. “Max has ordered that we both accompany him to the office.” Liz was saying things this way to soften what Max ordered her to do, getting Maria up early.

At first, Maria started to ask what was she to do at that office. Then again, she remembered that Liz was her boss, correction, Liz was her owner. At first, Maria had been frightened to not do what Michael ordered. Then, after their time together, she found herself wanting to obey him. Being with Michael brought her many rewards.

Maria showered and found that Liz had set out a business suit that Maria knew must be one of hers. Maria was sure that she didn’t have anything like that. Dressed and with a seed roll that she really liked, for breakfast, Maria was in the vehicle with Liz and the king. In Liz’s company, Max didn’t seem nearly as scary as Maria had thought of him before.

At the office, Maria was given a key and told by Max, “Maria, this is to be your office. I hope we filled it with things you can use.”

Maria opened the door and found that Max had had one of the spare offices sound proofed and set up as a recording studio. No one was more surprised than Max, when looking at the studio, Maria turned and kissed him.

Maria immediately stepped back and bowed, “I am sorry your highness. This, is so, as I once dreamed.”

“Max chuckled and said, “I think next time a hand shake would be more appropriate. I have arranged for you to study some of our music and I wondered if you can write in that style.”

For the rest of the morning, Maria busied herself in looking at all Max had given her. Occasionally, she saw Liz hard at work looking through books and copying articles for Max.
____________________
Stories by Ken
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

User avatar
ken_r
Obsessed Roswellian
Posts: 860
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:34 pm
Location: New Mexico

Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 12, pg8 Feb 23, 2014

Post by ken_r » Sat Mar 01, 2014 3:35 pm

Roswelllostcause:

begonia9508:

HypnotiqBlueEyes:

keepsmiling7: Liz will not believe that she is important enough for the king.

L-J-L 76:



Chapter 13

Michael was installed as Regent on Antar Four. He had taken the government house as his palace and made the governing council seek quarters elsewhere. He reported to Max that he was leveling the playing field. The present council had gained power by executing Tess’s family. Now, cast out of their own quarters, they were more on a level with the opposition in political discussions. Michael was fairly ruthless as he tolerated no opposition to his position. Michael wasn’t into executions, but he wasn’t shy about impressing dissidents in servitude and selling them off their world. Let them squabble all they wanted among themselves, but Michael represented the king. This news brought Maria into a depression. “Liz, do you suppose he will find some girl to bring home to replace me?” she sobbed.

“Maria, Michael’s actions are political. I doubt that he will forget you so quickly,” Liz assured her.

The trial of Rulian finally, ran out of objections on both sides. Each side wanted the best time for their cause. Liz, as the injured party was required to attend. Max felt it best that he keep out of any public opinion. He assigned Alex to advise Liz in all things.

Guilt was not an issue in this case. Rulian had assaulted Liz in front of many diplomats. Each diplomat saw what had happened colored by his or her own agendas. The case was what would be done to the defendant. Those speaking from Antar Four wanted a quick and ready execution and get her out of the public view as soon as possible. Those representing the monarchy wanted enslavement to keep Rulian as a symbol of the treason of the present Antarian Four government. Part of their argument was that as a slave Rulian should be sent to some pleasure house on the rim of the monarchy. There, she would be out of sight of proper Antarians, but her punishment would stand as a warning against treason against the king. The first two days were shouting matches.

On the way home, Alex remarked that he had never seen such bad court procedure. On Earth, Alex had forced himself to see cases where guilt had already been decided, but on Earth guilt and punishment were decided by the committee. That was what bothered Alex. What use was he if everything was predetermined? “Liz, there is no question of guilt; it is only opinions as to what her punishment will be. On Earth, I never had a case where the two sides were so polarized,” he explained.

“What is going to break the dead lock?” Liz asked.

“There is one more factor they haven’t gotten to. According to Antarian law, the victim has a say in the punishment. That means you will have the final vote,” Alex stated.

This shocked Liz. To testify what happened would be fine, she would tell the truth. That was not what she was here for. Liz would have the final say in Rulian’s punishment. This became a terrible responsibility, one, which Liz couldn’t pass on to anybody else.

-----------------

Once again, Tess visited her cousin. “Hate me Teresa. Spit on me and hate me because my family executed yours. It is now left to the decision of the king’s assistant. Either choice will be horrible. Tell me how I deserve whatever happens. Then maybe, I can believe in my wickedness and accept whatever my sentence.”

Tess was still sure that Rulian had not acted alone. She must have been encouraged, by someone else. Tess knew Liz was not a vindictive person, but she had no idea of what Liz would do. Liz represented the king and that also factored into her decision. The king had been quiet about the trial, but surely he had some opinion. As his assistant, Liz would be bound to favor what he wanted.

Liz had walked into Max’s office. He held up his hand. “Liz, before you say anything, I can say nothing about this case.”

“But, what if I choose something that brings disgrace to the monarchy?” Liz asked.

“Liz, the monarchy is strong and resilient. What one member says, will not bring down my kingdom. You must speak from your own heart and trust that what ever you choose, will be what you can live with,” Max explained.

“Do you consider me a member of the monarchy or just a simple emigrant from a failed world?” Liz asked.

“Liz, until your twenty is up, you are a member of the monarchy. For someone like Alex who can’t return to Earth because of fear of arrest, the monarchy is his home forever. I don’t think anyone would dare call you simple where the royal family would hear it. You went to the trial and were prepared to speak the truth; now, consult with Alex and be prepared to speak your heart,” Max stated.

That night Liz met with Alex. “Tell me what to do,” she requested.

“Sorry Liz, I can’t do that. I am a lawyer and now bound to the laws of Antar as I best understand them. When you make your decision, I will help you phrase it. Until then, you must be free to do as you wish. You can tell me what bothers you, but I won’t comment on it,” Alex explained.

“Long ago the king described an execution. I don’t think he would want another one and I am sure that I don’t want to be party to an execution. Tess once explained what being in a house of pleasure was like. She said that kind of slavery was reserved for recalcitrant subjects who were given the choice of performing or not eating. I don’t think Rulian is that hardened. It bothers me that her own people are so quick to disown her and cry for her execution. Maybe, they see that as something they can hold against the king. Tess has visited Rulian several times and Tess says that Rulian is working herself into a deep depression so she can accept her fate. To me, this sort of depression is contrary to life,” Liz narrated.

“Liz, you can make any decision you want. Your statement will weigh very heavily on the courts. You must make it alone without any coercion. Tomorrow, I will help you phrase what you want to say and I will present it, if that is what you want. Liz, it is going to be a long night. Remember whatever you decide, is correct to what you believe,” Alex concluded.

Maria was waiting for Liz when she returned. “Please, Maria, tonight I have to be alone,” Liz begged. Without a single word, Maria went back into her quarters and Liz closed the door to her bedroom. It was a very long night.

The next morning, Max went alone to his office. Liz and Alex took another ground transport to the court. Liz handed Alex an envelope and he opened it. Nodding his head he said, “Liz, this is your decision without any one else bringing pressure on you?”

Liz closed her eyes and nodded. Maybe what she decided would bring trouble to the king and that is what Liz most feared. Liz was becoming confused about her feelings to the king. She was his assistant, but he relied on her for many things. He gave her a lot of freedom in what she did and so far had been satisfied with her work. Sometimes, Liz felt that Max wanted something more from her, but why would she feel that from a king? The world of Antar was filled with beautiful smart women, many of them of royal blood. Liz still didn’t understand the clone business, but she felt that what the king did with his genes must be important.

The court was much calmer today as they brought Rulian in. She had been absented from much of the discussion. Apparently, how the court reached her sentence was not as important as it was that she saw the final decision.

The three judges called forth. “We, now, must hear from the victim. She has the right to the final say. She can decide which recommendation she finds agreeable.”

Alex stood. “I wish to represent the victim.”

“Please advance and state your qualifications,” the court’s representative droned on.

“I am Alex, formally Alex 241399 of Earth. I am a contract advisor to the king’s sister. On Earth I managed to complete my education, as difficult as it was, in Law and the History of Law. In traveling to Antar I studied languages along with body building and personal defense. While working in the office of the king, I was given the chance to study Antarian common law as well as the history of the king’s law. I have been asked to speak for the victim,” Alex announced.

The court’s representative asked, “Do you swear that to the best of your knowledge, the statement of the victim is hers and hers alone? She was not influenced by you, the king or any other party.”

“Yes, I do. She was influenced by her own sense of logic, her knowledge of Antarian history and society and maybe, from stories she remembers from her Earth education,” Alex stated.

“Very well, read her statement,” the court’s representative announced.

This was what everyone was waiting for. The prosecutor and the defense were deadlocked. The vote of the victim was heaver than either of them. She would swing Rulian’s fate. Rulian just sat with hung head. She had no idea of what was to happen. “Members of the court,” Alex had been carefully listening to court procedure. Right or wrong all these men had long histories of how the court was to proceed. “The victim was educated in sciences of Earth. Her final years were spent in preparation for research. This is one of the highest goals in the Earth education. Preparation for research is a broad spectrum of studies to permit students to question rules, thesis and theories. As the assistant to the king, she has used this training to learn as much as she can about Antar. On Earth, before the One World Government, many societies and cultures all had their own laws. Almost universal in cultures which were people oriented, they had laws of restitution rather than retribution. Societies that were government oriented preferred retribution, showing the power of the government to punish. The victim states that she sees restitution and people orientation in our schools when compared to those of Earth. The education she received on the Antarian space ship was one of encouragement toward learning. The education she had on Earth was an education of testing and weeding out the failures. Execution or slavery and being sent to some pleasure house at the rim of the monarchy doesn’t do anything for the victim, namely her. She humbly requests that the defendant be reduced to slavery and given to the victim to make restitution for her transgressions. The victim and I both thank you for this opportunity to speak.” Alex sat down and there was a time of silence.

The court’s representative stood and announced that the judges would retire to consider the sentence. They left and everyone waited. Twice Alex was called into the chambers to testify as to Liz’s character. No, he didn’t think Liz wanted the satisfaction of torturing the defendant. No, to his knowledge Liz didn’t even approve of slavery. If the offense had been to the victim only he was sure that she would have willing accepted an apology. The fact that the offense was directed to the king through his assistant, made it treason. Alex was sure that Liz requested the slavery because she believed that the court demanded some sort of punishment. Yes, he knew that Liz held the papers of the second to the king’s slave while Michael was absent. Yes, Alex knew that the slave of the king’s second and the victim were old friends. Yes, Alex was sure that what ever else the court demanded of the defendant, Liz would agree to.

The day was much longer than the court had intended. Finally, they returned and with a list of rules that must be followed. Rulian was removed and prepared to be delivered to Liz’s apartment.

Liz returned to the office of the king. She greatly worried that her decision would bring problems to his kingdom.

“Well Liz, you made your decision,” Max said.

Liz sat in his office and quietly stated, “If this brings offense to the kingdom, I am ready to accept whatever is your decision.”

“Fearing what I would say and what would happen to your position with me, you still made your own decision,” Max said again.

“Yes, sir, I had to do what I thought was right,” Liz whispered.

“And you did. Liz, this is why I keep your contract. It is also why I put you in charge of Maria’s papers. You are willing to do what you believe is right and back that up with your experiences of knowledge, without regard to your own future. No, Liz I am not unhappy. No execution for those on Antar Four to use as a cause. No disgrace for the family in power to use as incentive. The fate of Rulian remains in the royal family of Antar and this fate will only be known to that family. I think you may have taken months off of Michael’s stay off Antar,” the king had spoken.

Maria had been present when Rulian had slapped Liz. Talking to Liz earlier, Maria knew that the two choices were execution or a very unpleasant time of slavery. Liz hadn’t talked to Maria much about the trial and when Alex told Liz that she must not be coerced by anyone, Liz had cut herself off completely.

It was a surprise to Maria when she was informed that there would be a delivery for Liz. Rulian was brought to Liz’s apartment in chains, wearing the simple shift of a slave. On her feet were cheap sandals and she possessed nothing else. The deliverymen sat Rulian down and handed Maria a small box. “This is to be opened by your mistress. Guard it faithfully,” They instructed.

Rulian, the chains weighing heavily on both her arms and legs, sat with her head bowed breathing deeply. She had no idea of what her future would be. She recognized the slave in front of her. She had been on the arm of the king’s second that night. This Liz must be very powerful as she was in charge of this women, whom it was reported was a very powerful witch, able to cast many spells and dear to the king’s second.

Rulian was not a part of the discussion between Alex and the judges about Liz’s intentions. It was reported that women did not last long on the rim. Rulian had seen the execution of Tess’s parents. Personally, she was appalled at the spectacle. The screams, the smell of burning flesh and the three hooded men in a triangle all slowly consuming the group huddling and crying out for mercy.

Her family seemed happy at the results of the execution and there was even talk about how they could get at the missing Teresa. A couple attempts against the sister of the king and her slave both failed. The fact that it was Earthmen who turned them both times was not liked. That damned king was bringing more and more Earthlings into the monarchy. There was even talk about a planet for Earthmen to start over. They had destroyed their world; now, it was time for a second chance? Never! Leave Earthlings where they belong or rather, use them as menial slaves. This shook Rulian, because now that is what she was. Looking up slightly, Rulian saw the golden bracelet on Maria’s arm. She, also, saw jewels and crystals in Maria’s hair and on her clothes. This slave was owned by a rich and powerful individual. Rulian’s own wrist sported only the black iron bracelet of a kitchen drudge. What would this Liz do to make her punishment fit the crime of treason?

----------------------


Chapter 13

Michael was installed as Regent on Antar Four. He had taken the government house as his palace and made the governing council seek quarters elsewhere. He reported to Max that he was leveling the playing field. The present council had gained power by executing Tess’s family. Now, cast out of their own quarters, they were more on a level with the opposition in political discussions. Michael was fairly ruthless as he tolerated no opposition to his position. Michael wasn’t into executions, but he wasn’t shy about impressing dissidents in servitude and selling them off their world. Let them squabble all they wanted among themselves, but Michael represented the king. This news brought Maria into a depression. “Liz, do you suppose he will find some girl to bring home to replace me?” she sobbed.

“Maria, Michael’s actions are political. I doubt that he will forget you so quickly,” Liz assured her.

The trial of Rulian finally, ran out of objections on both sides. Each side wanted the best time for their cause. Liz, as the injured party was required to attend. Max felt it best that he keep out of any public opinion. He assigned Alex to advise Liz in all things.

Guilt was not an issue in this case. Rulian had assaulted Liz in front of many diplomats. Each diplomat saw what had happened colored by his or her own agendas. The case was what would be done to the defendant. Those speaking from Antar Four wanted a quick and ready execution and get her out of the public view as soon as possible. Those representing the monarchy wanted enslavement to keep Rulian as a symbol of the treason of the present Antarian Four government. Part of their argument was that as a slave Rulian should be sent to some pleasure house on the rim of the monarchy. There, she would be out of sight of proper Antarians, but her punishment would stand as a warning against treason against the king. The first two days were shouting matches.

On the way home, Alex remarked that he had never seen such bad court procedure. On Earth, Alex had forced himself to see cases where guilt had already been decided, but on Earth guilt and punishment were decided by the committee. That was what bothered Alex. What use was he if everything was predetermined? “Liz, there is no question of guilt; it is only opinions as to what her punishment will be. On Earth, I never had a case where the two sides were so polarized,” he explained.

“What is going to break the dead lock?” Liz asked.

“There is one more factor they haven’t gotten to. According to Antarian law, the victim has a say in the punishment. That means you will have the final vote,” Alex stated.

This shocked Liz. To testify what happened would be fine, she would tell the truth. That was not what she was here for. Liz would have the final say in Rulian’s punishment. This became a terrible responsibility, one, which Liz couldn’t pass on to anybody else.

-----------------

Once again, Tess visited her cousin. “Hate me Teresa. Spit on me and hate me because my family executed yours. It is now left to the decision of the king’s assistant. Either choice will be horrible. Tell me how I deserve whatever happens. Then maybe, I can believe in my wickedness and accept whatever my sentence.”

Tess was still sure that Rulian had not acted alone. She must have been encouraged, by someone else. Tess knew Liz was not a vindictive person, but she had no idea of what Liz would do. Liz represented the king and that also factored into her decision. The king had been quiet about the trial, but surely he had some opinion. As his assistant, Liz would be bound to favor what he wanted.

Liz had walked into Max’s office. He held up his hand. “Liz, before you say anything, I can say nothing about this case.”

“But, what if I choose something that brings disgrace to the monarchy?” Liz asked.

“Liz, the monarchy is strong and resilient. What one member says, will not bring down my kingdom. You must speak from your own heart and trust that what ever you choose, will be what you can live with,” Max explained.

“Do you consider me a member of the monarchy or just a simple emigrant from a failed world?” Liz asked.

“Liz, until your twenty is up, you are a member of the monarchy. For someone like Alex who can’t return to Earth because of fear of arrest, the monarchy is his home forever. I don’t think anyone would dare call you simple where the royal family would hear it. You went to the trial and were prepared to speak the truth; now, consult with Alex and be prepared to speak your heart,” Max stated.

That night Liz met with Alex. “Tell me what to do,” she requested.

“Sorry Liz, I can’t do that. I am a lawyer and now bound to the laws of Antar as I best understand them. When you make your decision, I will help you phrase it. Until then, you must be free to do as you wish. You can tell me what bothers you, but I won’t comment on it,” Alex explained.

“Long ago the king described an execution. I don’t think he would want another one and I am sure that I don’t want to be party to an execution. Tess once explained what being in a house of pleasure was like. She said that kind of slavery was reserved for recalcitrant subjects who were given the choice of performing or not eating. I don’t think Rulian is that hardened. It bothers me that her own people are so quick to disown her and cry for her execution. Maybe, they see that as something they can hold against the king. Tess has visited Rulian several times and Tess says that Rulian is working herself into a deep depression so she can accept her fate. To me, this sort of depression is contrary to life,” Liz narrated.

“Liz, you can make any decision you want. Your statement will weigh very heavily on the courts. You must make it alone without any coercion. Tomorrow, I will help you phrase what you want to say and I will present it, if that is what you want. Liz, it is going to be a long night. Remember whatever you decide, is correct to what you believe,” Alex concluded.

Maria was waiting for Liz when she returned. “Please, Maria, tonight I have to be alone,” Liz begged. Without a single word, Maria went back into her quarters and Liz closed the door to her bedroom. It was a very long night.

The next morning, Max went alone to his office. Liz and Alex took another ground transport to the court. Liz handed Alex an envelope and he opened it. Nodding his head he said, “Liz, this is your decision without any one else bringing pressure on you?”

Liz closed her eyes and nodded. Maybe what she decided would bring trouble to the king and that is what Liz most feared. Liz was becoming confused about her feelings to the king. She was his assistant, but he relied on her for many things. He gave her a lot of freedom in what she did and so far had been satisfied with her work. Sometimes, Liz felt that Max wanted something more from her, but why would she feel that from a king? The world of Antar was filled with beautiful smart women, many of them of royal blood. Liz still didn’t understand the clone business, but she felt that what the king did with his genes must be important.

The court was much calmer today as they brought Rulian in. She had been absented from much of the discussion. Apparently, how the court reached her sentence was not as important as it was that she saw the final decision.

The three judges called forth. “We, now, must hear from the victim. She has the right to the final say. She can decide which recommendation she finds agreeable.”

Alex stood. “I wish to represent the victim.”

“Please advance and state your qualifications,” the court’s representative droned on.

“I am Alex, formally Alex 241399 of Earth. I am a contract advisor to the king’s sister. On Earth I managed to complete my education, as difficult as it was, in Law and the History of Law. In traveling to Antar I studied languages along with body building and personal defense. While working in the office of the king, I was given the chance to study Antarian common law as well as the history of the king’s law. I have been asked to speak for the victim,” Alex announced.

The court’s representative asked, “Do you swear that to the best of your knowledge, the statement of the victim is hers and hers alone? She was not influenced by you, the king or any other party.”

“Yes, I do. She was influenced by her own sense of logic, her knowledge of Antarian history and society and maybe, from stories she remembers from her Earth education,” Alex stated.

“Very well, read her statement,” the court’s representative announced.

This was what everyone was waiting for. The prosecutor and the defense were deadlocked. The vote of the victim was heaver than either of them. She would swing Rulian’s fate. Rulian just sat with hung head. She had no idea of what was to happen. “Members of the court,” Alex had been carefully listening to court procedure. Right or wrong all these men had long histories of how the court was to proceed. “The victim was educated in sciences of Earth. Her final years were spent in preparation for research. This is one of the highest goals in the Earth education. Preparation for research is a broad spectrum of studies to permit students to question rules, thesis and theories. As the assistant to the king, she has used this training to learn as much as she can about Antar. On Earth, before the One World Government, many societies and cultures all had their own laws. Almost universal in cultures which were people oriented, they had laws of restitution rather than retribution. Societies that were government oriented preferred retribution, showing the power of the government to punish. The victim states that she sees restitution and people orientation in our schools when compared to those of Earth. The education she received on the Antarian space ship was one of encouragement toward learning. The education she had on Earth was an education of testing and weeding out the failures. Execution or slavery and being sent to some pleasure house at the rim of the monarchy doesn’t do anything for the victim, namely her. She humbly requests that the defendant be reduced to slavery and given to the victim to make restitution for her transgressions. The victim and I both thank you for this opportunity to speak.” Alex sat down and there was a time of silence.

The court’s representative stood and announced that the judges would retire to consider the sentence. They left and everyone waited. Twice Alex was called into the chambers to testify as to Liz’s character. No, he didn’t think Liz wanted the satisfaction of torturing the defendant. No, to his knowledge Liz didn’t even approve of slavery. If the offense had been to the victim only he was sure that she would have willing accepted an apology. The fact that the offense was directed to the king through his assistant, made it treason. Alex was sure that Liz requested the slavery because she believed that the court demanded some sort of punishment. Yes, he knew that Liz held the papers of the second to the king’s slave while Michael was absent. Yes, Alex knew that the slave of the king’s second and the victim were old friends. Yes, Alex was sure that what ever else the court demanded of the defendant, Liz would agree to.

The day was much longer than the court had intended. Finally, they returned and with a list of rules that must be followed. Rulian was removed and prepared to be delivered to Liz’s apartment.

Liz returned to the office of the king. She greatly worried that her decision would bring problems to his kingdom.

“Well Liz, you made your decision,” Max said.

Liz sat in his office and quietly stated, “If this brings offense to the kingdom, I am ready to accept whatever is your decision.”

“Fearing what I would say and what would happen to your position with me, you still made your own decision,” Max said again.

“Yes, sir, I had to do what I thought was right,” Liz whispered.

“And you did. Liz, this is why I keep your contract. It is also why I put you in charge of Maria’s papers. You are willing to do what you believe is right and back that up with your experiences of knowledge, without regard to your own future. No, Liz I am not unhappy. No execution for those on Antar Four to use as a cause. No disgrace for the family in power to use as incentive. The fate of Rulian remains in the royal family of Antar and this fate will only be known to that family. I think you may have taken months off of Michael’s stay off Antar,” the king had spoken.

Maria had been present when Rulian had slapped Liz. Talking to Liz earlier, Maria knew that the two choices were execution or a very unpleasant time of slavery. Liz hadn’t talked to Maria much about the trial and when Alex told Liz that she must not be coerced by anyone, Liz had cut herself off completely.

It was a surprise to Maria when she was informed that there would be a delivery for Liz. Rulian was brought to Liz’s apartment in chains, wearing the simple shift of a slave. On her feet were cheap sandals and she possessed nothing else. The deliverymen sat Rulian down and handed Maria a small box. “This is to be opened by your mistress. Guard it faithfully,” They instructed.

Rulian, the chains weighing heavily on both her arms and legs, sat with her head bowed breathing deeply. She had no idea of what her future would be. She recognized the slave in front of her. She had been on the arm of the king’s second that night. This Liz must be very powerful as she was in charge of this women, whom it was reported was a very powerful witch, able to cast many spells and dear to the king’s second.

Rulian was not a part of the discussion between Alex and the judges about Liz’s intentions. It was reported that women did not last long on the rim. Rulian had seen the execution of Tess’s parents. Personally, she was appalled at the spectacle. The screams, the smell of burning flesh and the three hooded men in a triangle all slowly consuming the group huddling and crying out for mercy.

Her family seemed happy at the results of the execution and there was even talk about how they could get at the missing Teresa. A couple attempts against the sister of the king and her slave both failed. The fact that it was Earthmen who turned them both times was not liked. That damned king was bringing more and more Earthlings into the monarchy. There was even talk about a planet for Earthmen to start over. They had destroyed their world; now, it was time for a second chance? Never! Leave Earthlings where they belong or rather, use them as menial slaves. This shook Rulian, because now that is what she was. Looking up slightly, Rulian saw the golden bracelet on Maria’s arm. She, also, saw jewels and crystals in Maria’s hair and on her clothes. This slave was owned by a rich and powerful individual. Rulian’s own wrist sported only the black iron bracelet of a kitchen drudge. What would this Liz do to make her punishment fit the crime of treason?
---------------------
Stories by Ken
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

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ken_r
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Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 13, pg8 Mar 1, 2014

Post by ken_r » Mon Mar 10, 2014 11:47 am

Roswelllostcause:

HypnotiqBlueEyes:

Natalie36:

begonia9508:

keepsmiling7:

L-J-L 76


Chapter 14

Michael felt the wind being knocked out of the men of Antar Four. That Liz was a smart woman. Michael had instructed his troops to be ready for whatever happened at the trial. If Rulian had been executed as her own lawyers wanted, Michael was sure that riots would occur and screams of, “Killing our daughters,” would be heard. If she had been banished to the outer rim as a girl of pleasure, Michael was sure that there would be calls of insults to governing family. Michael knew that either way, a bunch of those on Antar Four were “gonna get killed.” These people didn’t have any idea of the size and power of a ship like the Isabella II.

Liz had defused the whole thing by taking Rulian into the royal family and what her punishment from there, would be only known by that family. She was neither a martyr nor a poster girl who cold be used against the king.

Michael was troubled by a notice that, he should be prepared to meet a clandestine ship, more information would follow. This usually meant some mucky muck who didn’t understand a bit about occupation and was coming to mess up Michael’s life. The encryption of the message was very high. Only the king could command this level of secrecy.

It was days later when he again received an encryption that the ship was on its way. Now, there was nothing to do but wait. No date had been given so Michael supposed that the ship held a very important personage.

Only a short time later, there was a notice that on the backside of one of Antar Four’s moons a small ship was waiting for Michael. Michael dressed for the formality growling all the time. Normally, Michael always wore the uniform of one of his ground pounders. Occasionally, Michael did have to receive some local dignitary, usually trying to out maneuver the opposition. Michael found that they were easier to treat with when they feared and respected you, so then he would Don his dress uniform. This situation had diplomat written all over it. Michael’s transport flew directly to the moon and then, veered off to circle to the moon’s shadow. There, waiting for Michael was one of the king’s fastest yachts. Michael connected and quickly entered the airlock.

The captain was known slightly to Michael and they both saluted. The captain handed Michael a key and said, “Go to state room ‘D.’ We can maintain this position for three days only.”

Michael wondered what could take three days. This was a mission sent by Max, so it probably was very important.

-----------------------

When Liz got to the apartment, she was met by Maria. “I suppose the court went the way you wanted it?” Maria asked.

“As well as I could arrange it,” Liz replied.

Maria handed the small box to Liz and Liz tore it open. There were two keys inside. Liz went to Rulian and commanded, “Stand up.” Liz took off the chains and turning to Maria, Liz ordered, “Box these to ship back to the court.” Maria did not miss that the order was from Liz, her de facto owner. Liz marched Rulian down to Kateen, the woman in charge of the household. “Go slowly, but by the end of the week I want her used to hard work.”

With that out of the way, Liz returned to Maria. “Are you going to be a hard ass, now?” asked Maria.

“Not by choice, but the court said she had to suffer a certain amount of hard work. I left that to Kateen,” Liz stated.

The staff at the king’s house, were all free persons. Most of them lived close to the compound. Rulian would be the only slave. Liz knew that Kateen would work Rulian hard, but all the staff knew the king’s feeling about mistreating slaves. Because of the conditions, which allowed her to work at the king’s home, Rulian would be fitted with a locater collar. There would be no way she could escape and the security would know where she was at all times.

--------------------------

Alex and Kyle had surveyed the compound’s security. They both had suggestions and the king agreed. Hidden cameras were placed around the fence and in the forest. A room at the house was designated as the security room and men were trained to man it. There had been no more incursions, but they wanted to be prepared.

Kyle and Tess were both slaves. They both belonged to Isabel. Except for that one time when Kyle first came to the house, Isabel had done nothing to interfere with their relationship. Kyle wasn’t for her and she would have always regretted taking someone from Tess. They still lived in the duplex apartments where both Kyle and Alex could lend them security. Alex was living in Isabel’s bedroom, but he was finding her to be a difficult woman.

“Why, Alex, don’t you feel you are getting enough? After all, not every Earthling sleeps with the sister of the king,” she said.

“Isabel, it’s not about sleeping with the sister of the king. And, no, I am not getting enough. It’s not about sex. There were women like that back on Earth. I don’t want to see you become like them,” Alex stated. “I want the total Isabel, not just a tumble some nights. I once said that loving you would be enough, but it isn’t. I want to see as much hunger in your eyes for me, as I am sure you see in mine for you. My contract with the king is to protect you. I want more.”

“Maybe, I should take Tess away from Kyle and give her to you. I am sure she could feed your hunger,” Isabel quipped.

“Isabel, that is just bitchy. Tess has always been more than your personal slave. She has, for years, been your friend. Remember Kyle has saved your life at least once. No, Isabel, I want you,” Alex declared.

“I still own Maria. I can ask my brother to give me her papers instead of giving them to Liz. I can arrange for you to sleep with her. If she can charm Michael, then she can charm anyone,” Isabel almost screamed.

“Isabel, listen to yourself. You never acted like this before. What is wrong?” Alex asked.

“Just go away, Alex. Go away,” Isabel screamed.

“As you say, but I can’t go far because Max is trusting me to care for you,” Alex mumbled as he left her bedroom. He still had his own bedroom and until Isabel settled down, that is where he would remain.

There was a knock on his door. “Come in,” he called out.

Tess walked in. “I heard the princess and her tantrum. I do not think it would be a good idea to accept her offers. Kyle and I are very happy and even though Michael has said that the king can do as he wishes with Maria, Michael would be very unhappy to see her despoiled because of a juvenile outburst from Izzy.”

“What is wrong with Isabel?” Alex asked.

“I think she is falling in love and that terrifies her greatly,” Tess suggested.

“Falling in love!” Alex exclaimed. “Falling in love with who?” he asked as a worried question.

“Falling in love with you, silly,” Tess explained. Then she went on. “I am going to speak out of turn and I would prefer that you don’t tell Isabel what I am going to say. When she was still young, a clone brought forth by the order of the king, Izzy had a few lovers. Each one, she found out, was trying to get power over her, to get to Max. These were boys, but later she found men who acted the same way. Now, granted, they were all minor royals in the king’s court. That is why she attempted to take Kyle. Izzy sent me to see Kyle while he was still in a holding cell. I slept with Kyle partly from desperation of not having anyone since I was sold as a slave and partly because that was the fastest way to see into his character. What I found there, I was convinced that we needed him in our compound. Kyle was a remarkable person. He was a soldier until his unit betrayed him and he was a mercenary until the military arranged for him to be captured by pirates. Pirates are much different than slavers. They are not controlled and what they do with their cargo, no one knows. The slaves just disappear. Nobody knows where. Maybe there are still establishments who deal with the pirates on the rim or maybe there places which use humans in secret, nearer. We don’t know. The ship, Isabella II, stopped the pirate ship and imprisoned everyone. That was when they brought Kyle to Antar and to the attention of the king. Izzy was brought up to be a gracious princess. After all, she is third in line to the power of the government. She lives in fear that something will happen to Max and Michael. That would mean that for a time, she would be in control of the monarchy. Izzy doesn’t want that at all. She doesn’t want the responsibility. That is also, why she doesn’t want to fall in love. She tells herself that she is showing responsibility to us, her slaves, but like her ranting now, she sometimes slips. Michael left Maria to Max. Whatever Max chose to do with her, Michael would accept. To use Maria like a whore, would kill him and forever split up the royal family. Alex, If Isabel ordered me to go to your bed I would do that, but again as much as I like you, it would hurt Kyle and that is not what I want,” Tess took a deep breath as she finished her narrative.

“It’s not what I want either. I want Isabel, but I want her to really love me. You do know that I can’t go back to earth, don’t you,” Alex replied.

Tess looked up. “Why Alex? Can’t you return when your twenty is up?”

“Earth is angry because I passed all of my classes and was being groomed for a political position. I just didn’t like the way they worked. Antar promised something different. I didn’t then, know what and now Antar promises Isabel. I don’t know how to get her,” Alex mused.

The next day, Alex was waiting for Isabel on her run. “I thought you were through with me,” she said.

“I said I was through with your bed. Max ordered me not to allow you to run alone, so let’s get going,” Alex replied.

Isabel felt sadness. Running with Alex usually was fun. He had worlds of stories and ideas that she enjoyed arguing with. Today, Alex was silent. They were on the backside of the compound in the forest. Suddenly Alex stopped. “What’s wrong Alex? Are you getting soft?” Isabel taunted.

Alex didn’t answer. He kept looking around. Something was wrong. No matter what planet you might be on, if there is life, that life makes noise. Here on Antar there were insect like creatures and reptilian like ones. They all scurried about making noise in loose stones and brush. Many of the insects made singing noises, which they quit when the runners approached. They, usually, still could be heard from the forest up ahead. Now, nothing. Isabel started to say something. Alex didn’t give her a chance. He quickly cupped his hand over her mouth and forced her to the ground. Alex was careful to cup his hand and he did feel her try to bite him. “Isabel, shut up and settle down. If you don’t, I am going to slap you silly. There is something up ahead that is probably not good, at least for us,” he told her.

Isabel still was wiggling and pulling at his hands with her fingers. Finally, she resorted to her nails. Now, his hands were bleeding. “Izzy, I said stop it.” Alex whispered harshly as he brought his free hand sharply against her cheek. “We are in trouble and I am not going to get killed because of your infantile tantrum. I am going to remove my hand, but I will knock you silly if you try to scream,” Alex whispered.

Something crashed through the brush up ahead. Alex was tightly holding Isabel’s arm. “Security is bound to pick them up, we have to stay hidden until help arrives,” he whispered.

Alex heard the sound again, this time ahead and off to the left. Alex pulled Isabel to the right. There was a drainage about twenty five meters to the right. If Alex remembered, much of this was undercut into the pathway. If they could get there maybe, they could find a cave under the bank. Alex concentrated on the path so as to not make noise themselves. He swung himself into the drain and reaching up caught Isabel as she joined him. Suddenly, Alex felt a buzzing and Isabel stumbled. Alex remembered the story Kyle told about the machines, which interfered with the alien’s powers. Quickly scooping her up and tossing her over his shoulder, Alex scrambled along the drainage. He was looking for a deep undercut.

Finally, he found it. There were roots and weeds, but he could see that the cave went almost a meter back into the bank. He wished Isabel could help herself better, but he put her arm over his shoulder and pulled her along. No telling what else was living back here. Alex hoped they understood that he was their friend rather than help whatever was still looking for him. Several times, he heard someone talking above them. They were talking in a language that Alex couldn’t understand.

The buzzing had stopped, but Isabel was now trembling like she had the chills. Whatever they used this time had affected her nervous system badly. The best thing for Alex was to wait right here. Her teeth were chattering and Alex had no idea what to do. He held her tightly to keep her trembles from giving their location away. Alex and Kyle had been careful about redundancy in building the security system. There was no way that intruders could interfere without notifying Kyle that something was wrong.

Alone, Alex might challenge the intruders. With Isabel, he had the responsibility for her protection. There was another problem. Suppose he left her hidden, if something was to happen to him, who would bring help to her? That nerve thing wasn’t straightening itself out. Isabel was still paralyzed.

Alex wished he could understand the times when he heard them talking. Not good, whatever they said, it didn’t help him. He still couldn’t understand why there weren’t guards of the monarchy, scouring the forest.

---------------------

The security cameras had been acting up all morning. It wasn’t one or two cameras going out, it was the entire system covering the forest. Kyle called Max and informed him that they had a situation. Max was talking to diplomats from some of the other planets about Antar Four and couldn’t leave immediately return. He did send Liz with a group of city guards. He also, told Kyle to secure Tess. Maria was with him. He would take care of her

As soon as they arrived, Liz ran into the house. “Kyle,” she shouted. She was rewarded by a click as the lock of a door turned and Kyle brought them all into the security room.

“The last view we have of Alex and Isabel is that they were heading into the forest. I hear that same buzzing on the sensors and it is effecting the Antarians in strange ways,” Kyle explained.

“What can we do,” the chief of the guards asked.

“Not much, Max is sending drop troops. They are prepared to handle anything. I hope they can get past these disablers. I locked Tess in a vault and also included Rulian. I don’t know what their objective is. I cautioned Max about bringing Maria home. She can be quite a handful when she is upset. I think he is going to leave her somewhere he thinks is safe.” Then, Kyle turned to Liz. I don’t like to ask this and I am sure the king will kick my butt you and I are the only ones who can’t be harmed by these things. I am going to need you to help me.”

Liz went to Isabel’s room, Liz was sure that Izzy had some dark slacks and a dark sweater. They were going to be working in the shadows and she needed clothes that wouldn’t stand out. By this time it was night. Isabel and Alex had been missing since morning.

When they got into the forest she heard the buzzing that Kyle had described. Liz had no idea how Kyle found the path. She followed his dim shape as they softly moved. They came upon a man standing at the edge of a clearing. Kyle touched her shoulder and pointed to the ground. Liz sank down. Kyle, like a shadow, silently floated back in the trees. It was several minutes when Liz saw something move behind the man in the clearing. Kyle swung his hands over the man’s head and there was a sharp sound as she saw the man’s head turn to a strange angle and the man sank down.

Kyle blindly waved to her to come on and Liz hurried to catch up. Kyle had picked up a weapon of some type. It had what Kyle said was a trigger and something that pointed. Kyle whispered, “I need the next one alive.”

They slowly proceeded along the trail. It wasn’t long before Kyle’s soldier instincts whispered, “There is another one.”

They softly moved in close and again Kyle whispered. “Liz, count to one hundred and then step out and softly call him.”

“What do I call him, Kyle?” she asked.

“Call him Sam, Jake or whatever you want. I just want him looking at you. I need him alive, at least for a while,” Kyle informed her.

After a hundred, Liz stepped out and softly called, “Hey Jake, over here.”

The man startled jumped and peered at Liz or where he thought Liz was. Liz saw Kyle hit the man in the back of the head with his fist. The man went down, but he wasn’t out. Kyle swung again and hit him on the chin. This time, he went down and stayed there. Kyle motioned for Liz to approach and hoisting the man on his shoulder, he started to the edge of the forest. They quickly carried the man to a clearing near the fence. Kyle tied his arms and legs. Then, he motioned Liz to return to the safety of the trees. “Take that thing I gave you. Remember, I am going to come straight to you, but any other thing you see, especially if it looks like an intruder, you blast it, hear me?” Kyle demanded.

Liz got to the trees and waited. Suddenly, she saw Kyle do something to the man’s leg and he screamed. Kyle was back with her in a second. They both waited for several minutes. Then, Liz saw them. Shadows trying to see what was wrong with their friend. As soon as they got out of the trees, Kyle yelled, “Blast ‘em, Liz!”

Liz didn’t have time to think. Kyle had given her orders and he was supposed to know about these things. There was the smell of burning flesh and screams. The intruders got off a few blasts themselves that lit up the woods. Soon the whomp, whomp of the troop transport was heard and the entire woods was lit up. “Liz, take off your hat and throw it on the ground,” Kyle yelled above the noise.

Soon the woods were filled with jump troops. They rounded everyone up. One of them recognized Liz from Max’s office and she introduced them to Kyle. “We have two missing people,” Kyle stated.

--------------------------------

Alex, still holding Isabel, heard the noise and saw the flashes toward the back fence. He still wasn’t sure that the woods were clear near them. Isabel wasn’t doing very well.
-------------------------------
Stories by Ken
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

User avatar
ken_r
Obsessed Roswellian
Posts: 860
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:34 pm
Location: New Mexico

Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 14, pg9 Mar 10, 2014

Post by ken_r » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:57 am

Roswelllostcause: Max is finding his feelings growstronger for Liz, but he is also the king and has many responsibilities. There is a lot more in Liz's contract than she knows about at the moment.

keepsmiling7: When things are difficult, you have to look towards the king.

Natalie36: Liz is growing. There was a reason for offering her a contract.

HypnotiqBlueEyes: Isabel has thinking and healing to do first.

begonia9508: Next week, Max will give Alex some good advice.



Chapter 15

Rulian and Tess were locked in a vault built into the main house. Kyle had stocked the vault with water and what he told Tess were “C” rations. He didn’t explain what the “C” meant. They had an Antarian version of what Kyle called a “porta-potty,” again terms that he didn’t explain. The light was low, but it wasn’t totally dark. Rulian was fretting, “How long do you suppose they are going to leave us here?”

Tess shrugged, “I imagine until the intrusion is resolved.”

“What if they are all killed and no one else knows where we are?” Rulian asked.

“If everybody was killed then us being out there would just add two more bodies. Get this straight, Rulian, the intruders are from Antar Four. You even might be their target. Remember that your own lawyers were for your execution. They want you to be a martyr and not a living memory to their mistakes. Me, I am sure they want all of my family dead. I am only a loose end,” Tess explained.

“Why did Kyle seek me out from the kitchen? Why did he care whether I was killed or not?” Rulian worried as she twisted her hands.

“Kyle has a mission from Max and that is to secure the main house. Slave though he be, Kyle is first a soldier. Max trusts him to protect whom ever Max considers is family,” Tess explained. Tess was very proud of her lover and the responsibility he had with the king.

“Still why me? I am not part of the king’s household,” cried Rulian.

“But, you are,” Tess stated. “Liz is on contract from Earth and she is not allowed to own slaves. Max holds your papers. That makes you part of his household if for no other reason that is the way he thinks,” Tess explained.

There was silence for several minutes. Then, Rulian started again. “Don’t you hate me a little bit for what my family did to yours?” she asked.

“Rulian, there is a lot more to the debt my family drove our home world into than the sale of a simple slave girl could satisfy. I believe that when it all comes out, the king already owns half of Antar Four’s industry. I was the part everyone looked at. I was the distraction. There were people in my family that probably should have been executed. I can’t help but think of the women and children, girls like me, who had nothing to do with what the politicians did. Everyone, except me, has been executed. That bothers me. I don’t hate you. I don’t think you had much more than I, to do with what has gone on back on Antar Four,” Tess stated.

Rulin looked at the ceiling as she spoke, “It was a horrible day. Everyone was made to stand and watch. Some of the old men and women were screaming for blood as if blood would wash away our problems. That is all I could think of those days in the prison cell. In the nights, all I could think of was the guards who came night after night,” Rulian shuddered.

-------------------------------

Back at Max’s office, he was talking to two highly trusted pilots. “We have to hurry. I know that this is important, but I need to see to the safely of my home.”

The senior pilot spoke up, “Max, everything is already set up. If we delay, it might take months to re-plan.”

“I wanted my assistant to help me with the preparations. She was needed at home. Give me a half hour and I will have her ready. The ship is prepared isn’t it,” Max asked.

“Of course, get her into the box and we will return shortly to carry her off,” the pilots said.

Max approached the door to Maria’s studio with many thoughts running through his mind. He knocked softly. “Maria, I need to see you in my office.”

The king usually made his orders known through Liz. Maria couldn’t imagine what had happened. She passed through Liz’s office and it showed of someone leaving in a hurry. That wasn’t like Liz. Maria entered the open door and Max stood up and closed the door. He pulled the curtains, which covered the windows open to the outer office. “Maria, there are problems at the house. Liz has already left and I must follow soon. First, there is something I want you to do,” Max stated.

Maria, at the sound of trouble at home felt her excitement rising. Liz being in the middle of it didn’t help either. Max handed her a drink. That was very unusual. “Maria, this will calm your nerves,” Max said.

That was the last thing Maria remembered for many hours.

Max went to the side of his office and pulled a cover off a box. It was a coffin of sorts. Max carefully lifted the unconscious lady and placed her in the box. Then, he carefully adjusted a mask on her face and turned the valve of an oxygen bottle that he placed beside her. Max closed the lid and locked the top. Now, she would remain until the pilot unlocked her. Max didn’t like to do this, but after much argument, it had been decided that this was the easiest way, to secretly get Maria into the small ship.

--------------------------

Alex had heard nothing for several hours. He had to get Isabel to someone who would know how to take care of her soon. He couldn’t afford the luxury of carrying her in his arms, he had to be free to use his hand to pull them both through the forest.

Alex was, as quiet as possiblely, moving through the trees. He had seen nothing of the intruders. He could feel Isabel still trembling as she lay over his shoulder. According to the story, Kyle told, something different had been used this time. Before, with Kyle, the Antarians had become incapacitated, but soon recovered when he destroyed the mechanism. Isabel was still only semi-conscious. Alex heard a noise behind him. He faded as quickly into the brush as he could. All the noise and commotion had been closer to the back fence. Alex was heading for the main house. That was the only place of safety, he could think of.

Alex remained motionless, but he could feel Isabel still trembling and he knew that at any moment she might scream out. The sound was going past them and that was a good thing unless they had been spotted and Alex was being surrounded.

“Alex, if this is you please stand up,” a voice said.

Alex stood with his back to a tree or rather Isabel’s back to the tree as he pulled her behind himself. Several bright lights were turned on Alex and he saw Kyle come out of the darkness. “That is okay, Alex. We will take her, now,” Kyle spoke up. Alex noticed that Kyle was joined by another figure all in black with long hair, Alex thought this must be Liz. Not the Liz Alex had worked with in the office, but another side to the Earth lady. Liz seemed to be a commando just like Kyle.

The intruders who had been killed were already blowing away. Antarians didn’t have a strong molecular bond after death. The Antarian in the best shape was the one Kyle had used for a decoy. He was still screaming and sobbing. “Clean his wound out and give him some local anesthetic,” Kyle ordered. “That will shut him up”

“How did you cause him so much pain?” one of the troopers asked.

Kyle shrugged and said, “I cut him deeply in his leg and then pissed in the wound. I learned that down in Central America or what was Central America before the world government. We had a drug lord and the insurgents I was with did that until he finally talked.”

They were now all back at the house. Tess and Rulian had been freed and Rulian returned to the kitchen. Kyle’s prisoner talked down right friendly and when he slowed down, they threatened to bring Kyle back. Max did frown at Kyle when Liz came in dressed like a commando. Kyle figured that later El Presidente would have a heart to heart talk with him. As usual he shrugged. He had a job to do and he needed a non-Antarian to help him. Liz was the best for the job. Max gave him orders and Max was going to have to accept the way Kyle followed those orders.

Isabel was in her bed, but Max couldn’t find anything wrong with her. What ever interrupted her powers had done more than that to her body. Because of the different skills of healing within the Antarian species, actual medicine hadn’t developed very much. “Put her in bed and get someone to watch over her,” Max ordered.

“I will stay,” Alex volunteered. “I have been watching over Isabel for over a day now.”

Max nodded. Close relations were better than anything else sometimes. Max had been hoping the Alex and Isabel had been working on those relations. Max shooed everyone out but Alex and silently closed Isabel’s door.

Alex arranged the single chair against her bed so he could sit down and still hold her hand. Soon, he was fast asleep with very strange and restless dreams. No one had told him that some Antarians could share dreams and, unconsciously, that is what Isabel had been doing.

-------------------

When they had been attacked Kyle told the staff to run. Now that the emergency was over they came trickling back. Max looked at Kyle. “When you took Liz with you weren’t you worried about taking her into danger?” he asked.

“Of course, but I would have been worried about leaving her in danger if I had made her stay. I had to have help. One person couldn’t do what I intended. I couldn’t depend on an Antarian. The intruders had something that attacked Antarians. It had to be someone of Earth. I needed someone from Earth who could learn to fight like me. Hey, we got off easy. But, I might have needed someone to cover me as we retreated. The only danger, as I saw it, was my fear that Liz might shoot me when I set up the decoy. As it was, she was a perfect soldier,” Kyle reported.

Liz spoke up. “Max what did you do with Maria? If you locked her up somewhere I imagine now she might be having fits by now.”

“Maria is being taken care of. She will be gone about a week. Now, her safety depends on only me knowing where she is. We will talk later. Don’t worry about Maria,” Max said.

-------------------

“In his dreams, Alex kept seeing a girl who looked vaguely like Isabel. It was like a split screen. On one part he heard their pleas of love and on the other screen he saw their brags that they would be the ones to bring down the ice princess. Both times, he saw things from the perspective of Isabel as if she had read her suitors minds. Alex saw her flirt with them, tempt them and then run them off. Alex saw that the only two people that Isabel ever really loved were Max her brother, and Michael.

Alex saw Isabel try to strengthen her love for Michael. In a wedding negligee, he saw her approach Michael. He saw them sink down into their bed. Alex saw them sitting together, naked as they shook their heads. This wasn’t going to work. Alex saw this several times, but it always ended the same way. Alex saw Isabel take Tess by the hand and lead her to Michael’s room. He saw her standing, watching Tess and Michael as Michael raged in anger for Isabel to quit trying to fix his life. Alex saw Isabel lead the crying Tess back to her apartment. Alex, then saw, Maria. He heard Tess say, “Isabel, no news is good news, hopefully they are good together.”

Then for a while, Alex saw nothing. Alex didn’t know that Isabel now was trying to heal herself from both the machine of the intruders and the depression she had gotten herself into with Alex. She had behaved very badly.

-----------------------------

Even though it had been several years before, Maria recognized the hum of a space ship. She also recognized that it had been Max who had drugged her. Her mind again began to run away. Had something happened to Michael and this was Max’s way of taking care of her? Was Max sending her out to the rim where she would never be heard from again? Maria remembered that the first time, the Antarian had put her to sleep with just a touch. She definitely remembered Max giving her something to drink and that was the last thing she remembered. Maria sat up and looked around. She was in some sort of a stateroom, one that she would never have been able to afford herself. Afford herself, Maria was back to the thinking of a free woman back on Earth. Max had knocked her out so he could ship her off somewhere.

Maria looked down at what she was in. This was a coffin if she was correct. Had Max intended to bury her somewhere? There was a short ladder against the side of the coffin and Maria used that to climb out. Once out of the coffin, she looked around at the fittings in the room. The room was of pure luxury. There was a woman’s dressing table and Maria saw many of the things that the strange little aliens used in their beauty work.

It flashed across Maria’s mind that Max was sending her to some high placed diplomat. Michael had ordered her to cheerfully do whatever Max ordered. She owed it to Michael to try. Snooping in one of the closets she found many of the dresses that Michael always admired on her. Her beloved guitar was in its case standing against the wall. Where ever she was being sent she was supposed to charm somebody. Maria checked the door and found it locked on her side. Then, she saw that it had been locked on the other side, also.

Maria found an envelop on her dressing table with the instruction, “Please give to your visitor.” For some reason, names were not to be given.

----------------------------

Something woke Alex up. He stood and looked into the very pale face of Isabel. “Did we escape, Alex?” she whispered.

“Yes, with the help of a lot of other people,” Alex explained.

“Did my brother come?” she asked.

“Yes,” Alex replied.

“Are you still mad at me?”

“No, I never was angry. I was terribly hurt.”

“How much damage did the intruder do?”

“You were the only casualty.”

“What happened to the intruders?”

“Kyle captured one and the rest were killed and blew away.”

“Did you see my dreams?”

“Yes.”

“Where do we go from here?” she asked finally.

“Why don’t we finish our run,” Alex suggested.

----------------------------

They were in Max’s office. “Liz, what possessed you to do such a thing? Kyle is a trained professional, you could have been hurt,” Max sternly said.

“Yeah, and if they had gotten by Kyle, all of the household could have been murdered. With Kyle I had a fighting chance. Max, I am sorry, but being a sheep bleating until its throat is cut is not what I want in life. Actually, I am thinking I did pretty good out there. I think you ought to increase my contract to include lessons from Kyle in security and clandestine warfare,” Liz stated.

Max could only chuckle. These Earthlings amazed him. Kyle almost single handled took out a small army. Well, he has his lieutenant, Liz, to help him. Max couldn’t wait to see what all Maria could accomplish. Well, maybe, he would never know. Michael said no one knew what she could do until they tried it. Michael wasn’t into letting others try Maria if he could help it. Max knew that Michael’s message saying that Max could do with Maria whatever he wanted, were more formal than accurate. Michael had phrased his letter the proper way when making a request of the king. Alex had surpassed Max’s expectations with Isabel, Isabel could be a pain, he well knew. Alex’s main job was to protect Isabel. He did this very well.
------------------------------

Stories by Ken
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

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ken_r
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Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 15, pg10 Mar 16, 2014

Post by ken_r » Thu Mar 27, 2014 12:10 pm

HypotniqBlueEyes: Remember Max is a king and probably not much on flowers and candy. It will be seen that Max has cared for Liz for a long time.

Roswelllostcause: Liz was not a show off or grandstander. Go back and look at what Mr. Summers said when she took her contract. At the time, Liz thought she would be working for an important man, but she had no idea it would be the king. Probably Mr. Summers didn't know about the king either.

keepsmiling7: security was all important. They were in a state of war. Everything about taking Maria being off planet was secret. If Liz hadn't had to go back to the main house, maybe she could have gotten Maria into the ship with out the theatrics. Max wasn't sure that he could just command Maria to get into the box in secret and take the trip.

L-J-L 76: Look at the way Alex was recruited. They wanted him, but they needed more than just a smart man. To survive with the king, Antar needed a trained warrior also.


Chapter 16

The drone of the space ship stopped. A message came into her room that she was to prepare herself for a visitor. Well, soon, she would know what this was all about.

Maria showered and sat at her dressing table. She hoped that she could remember what Ech and Och had done each time. She put on her golden hose and her ruby slippers. Going to the closet, she wondered what would be best to wear. Maria was no diplomat and she was sure that the king hadn’t chosen her to make a long treaty. There was someone he wanted her to entertain. Maria chose a short dress of spun golden material, so light that it almost made her feel naked. She pulled on the dress and decided that it would be best to wear nothing else under it. As she did the first time meeting Michael, Maria took her guitar and unlocking her side of the door, she sat on the bed and began to sing French love songs.

The captain had given Michael the key and led him to the door. Michael had no idea who or what lay on the other side. Michael turned the lock, prepared for anything. That is anything except to see his golden girl singing those strange love songs.

“Michael, there is a message, I presume it is from Max, on the table,” she said, Michael still hadn’t said anything. He strode to the table and saw the envelope. Michael ripped it opened and read.

Michael:
I assume by this time you are missing Maria.
I know she is missing you. Several months of
planning went into bringing you together.
Don’t get in a huff or try to tell me it was too dangerous.
It is dangerous here, also. The pilot assures me
He can keep hidden for about three days.
I am sorry that it can’t be longer. It will be
worth it, to not see Maria, dragging around the
place.

Max

“Have you read this?” Michael asked.

“No, it was sealed. Max told me nothing. I guess that was necessary for security. He did give us three days. Let’s not waste them,” Maria said looking into Michael’s face.

So unlike Uriah, the Hittite, Michael took advantage of what his king offered. Later, they both would recall the three day marathon on the space yacht as almost as long a run as had been the days just before Michael left Antar.

--------------------------

Alex and Isabel were in the woods toward the back of the compound. This is where the intruders had entered. Kyle had been investigating and he decided that the disrupter which paralyzed the Antarians, also, was tuned to the cameras. Alex and Isabel were traveling at a slow pace. Isabel was still weak.

“How long are you going to be on Antar?” Isabel asked. She knew that most of the contracts were for twenty years. She intended to make a point.

“Probably for life, Isabel, I can’t go back to Earth even if I wanted to,” Alex answered.

This was strange because one of Isabel’s private brick walls that she had built, after meeting Alex, was the argument with herself that affairs with contractees would not last long enough to be worthwhile. She had changed this from what she had first expressed to herself. Isabel had to think fast if all her excuses were not to be destroyed.

Neither of them was trying to set a fast pace in either their workout or their affairs. There were no streams running through the king’s compound, but in the middle of the forest some king, lost back in history, had built a fountain and a pool. Their history hadn’t seen fit to leave any sign of their benefactor’s name. Alex sat down on the ground. Today was a beautiful day. In contrast to the day they were invaded, the insects were singing. Alex allowed himself to wonder why their presence now, wasn’t alarming the creatures. The day of the invasion, the forest had been totally quiet. Antar didn’t have birds, but they did have a chirping reptile or such. Alex wasn’t sure of any of the historical biology of this planet.

Isabel leaned against another tree with her eyes closed. She badly wished she could keep her world as simple as she had seen it in her youth when she had first appeared as an activated clone. Alex rummaged through his daypack and took out two messages both bearing the king’s seal. “Max asked that we open these together when we had time alone to discuss his message,” Alex directed.

Throwing one message to Isabel like a spinning disk, which by reflex she leaned forward and caught between her hands, Alex ripped his message open. He read it and then he leaned back looking at Isabel. Isabel sat there looking at the sealed message like it was a dangerous trap. Max didn’t lightly send messages. His requests were cryptic at best. What did Isabel and Alex have to discuss? For a while, Alex and Isabel had been lovers. It was Alex who said he wanted more. Isabel’s firewalls had ignited and she had pulled away. That was the day of the invasion. Once again, Alex’s dedication had saved her life. Now, they were back where they had been that fateful day. Isabel didn’t know what she wanted. Well, maybe, she did know. Isabel would have been content if everything could have gone back to the days when Alex first came to their family.

Isabel looked at Alex and he was watching her with his message laid open in his lap. She tried to read his expression and failed. Alex could have been playing poker with a royal flush as far as she could tell. Isabel closed her eyes and searched for anything her powers could give her about what Alex was thinking. Again, she reached only failure. There was nothing else but to read the damned message. As far as she could tell, Max was messing with her life someway.

My dearest sister:
Twice this man, Alex of Earth, has saved your life
without regard for his own safety. I am hoping that he
is the one you are seeking. Because of the situation
on Antar Four, our family is in danger. It is the wish of
the king that you now share the same rooms and I highly
encourage that you share the same bed. Before you
accuse me of meddling in your affairs, remember that you
have been involved with my life many times. You and Michael
were never meant for each other. Tess was never meant for
me any more than she was for Michael. Giving Maria to Michael
was the right thing to do as was giving Kyle to Tess after
you used Tess to learn about him. I request that you and
Alex talk about this.

Please don’t make me make this an order from the king.

Your loving brother, Max (King Zander, the twenty-fourth.)

Isabel was trembling as she leaned back against her tree and closed her eyes. “You knew what was in theses messages?” she asked.

“No, but I am not surprised,” Alex answered.

“Did you have anything to do with this?” Isabel said searching for anything to get mad about.

“No, security things were all I have discussed with Kyle or Max. Our talks have been mostly about hardware. We talked about more cameras and recorders. My relationship with you was never a topic for discussion,” Alex assured her.

“I can’t tell if Max is right and he made this request because of security or if he is trying to get back at me trying to set him up with Tess and others like her,” Isabel mused.

“You know your brother better than I, but I have never known him to do anything petty,” Alex stated.

“Oh, I am sure that his reasons are sound. Notice how he arranged us to open the message where no one else was around. Now, that is my brother. Notice, also, that he made a request, but left it open to be a command of the king. Max knows what he is doing. He picked you because there is no reasonable cause for us not to obey his wishes. I have no reason not to welcome you to my bed. Max is playing with my head. He knows that I find reasons where none exist. Against the wishes of the king, these reasons dissolve away,” Isabel was almost crying.

Alex was not that woman wise to know what to say so, he sat waiting for her to go on. When she only sat with her head hanging down on her chest, Alex finally, asked, “What is it that you find objectionable in the king’s wishes? We shared a bed for awhile. I still want more, but I find no reason not to follow the request of the king.”

Isabel didn’t say a thing. She just shook her head. Alex wasn’t going to get any more information out of her, now. They sat in silence until finally, Isabel stood and walking beside Alex she returned to the main house. When they returned to the house, they found that Maria had returned.

Max had been right about Maria. The three days did her wonders. She was gushing about her trip and the wonders of seeing Michael when Max motioned to Liz. “May I have a word with you in my home office?” he asked.

Ever since the attempted invasion, Max had been acting strange. “I have made arrangements for you to train with Kyle every evening that you don’t have other duties. I wasn’t happy about this at first, but after talking to Kyle, I think it might be a good idea to have at least one of the female members trained in how to survive another invasion. Kyle is right in that you are the only candidate. Maria is not of the right temperament and Tess is the wrong species and temperament for this, I am not sure about anything with Isabel.” Max shuffled papers on his desk. Liz was sure that there was something else on his mind. Finally, Max put the papers down and building a temple with his fingertips, he said. “There is one other very important thing. I want you to move your apartment.”

Liz looked up in surprise, “Where, Max? Where best can I be?”

“You were told in the interview when you applied for this contract that you would never be made to do things against your will. You were also told that occasionally, working close to your boss intimacies might occur. I want you to move in with me.” Max dropped his bombshell.

“Max, you are a king. I am a simple dropout from Earth on a twenty year contract,” Liz almost cried. This wasn’t quite the romance she had always hoped for.

“Liz there is nothing simple about you. After twenty years, there wouldn’t be much left for you to return to on Earth. We are not sure of how much Earth will remain after twenty years. In your position as my assistant, you will not be allowed much social life, here. A king wastes too much time fending off bubble headed daughters and sisters if he is single. Here, I am offering you to be my wife and companion. You have brains, beauty and courage. What more can a king ask for? You might ask, what do I have for you? You have my companionship, access to my power and chances on Antar, that you would never have had, even if you had succeeded, back on Earth. Plus, you can watch over your friend, Maria,” Max explained. “I won’t kid you. I offer a certain amount of danger, also. That is why I decided to let you train with Kyle. I suppose the reality is that my kingdom could be overrun and all of us executed. That is a low probability and with your help we will make that probability even smaller. I am making this as a request and not an order. If you accept, I want you to move Maria into your apartment. Until Michael returns, that will give her better protection.”

Liz felt like she had been run over by a truck. She was a very small Earth girl who had been employed by a very powerful man. Liz had a lot of respect for Max. The very fact that those close to him, used his name rather then his title, told a lot about him. Did she love Max? Had Liz ever had a chance to love anyone? She had been taken from her parents at a very young age. Girls making her grades were not taking time to shag in the closets or eraser rooms of the school. Liz, was now thinking, wondering if she would ever be given the chance for a relationship, much less a family and whatever was that thing called Love. Could Max love? His youth had been even more restricted than hers. That might be a question. Liz was sure that Max had had affairs being in his position and all. She had listened to him moan, as politics became more intense, that the pressure to take control from him was one of his biggest problems. Max, now, was shy of anyone who might try to use sexual favors or a pregnancy to influence him. The mysterious council who Max answered to had told him that they didn’t want his genes distributed frivolously. Max used the word wife. Liz wondered if wife meant the same as she remembered in her Human language. Thinking of Earth, what did wife in the era of enlightenment mean now, back on Earth? Except for the “Dons,” did wife and the implied family have anything for the masses? Liz remembered something from Maria.

“Make yourself indispensible so he can’t imagine being without you and that might be pretty close to love."

Liz was sure that there must be more than that. Did Maria, love Michael? Maria was a slave. She had no choice, but then, why did her eyes shine brighter when Michael was around or as they did today when Maria was still thinking of him?

Right now, Liz needed to talk to Maria. Where was she?

-----------------------

Alex had been looking for Isabel. To his mind they hadn’t settled anything. When Alex saw Max he asked, “Have you seen Isabel?”

Max looked up and said, “I imagine that she is overseeing the transfer of your things to her apartment.”

Alex raised his eyebrows. “We hadn’t settled on anything when I last left her.”

Max shrugged, “I think you had. Alex, Isabel is difficult and Isabel is stubborn. Isabel is not stupid. There is no way that some young noble is going to be allowed close to Isabel. She already struck out with Michael and has graciously given in to Tess with Kyle. Isabel has shown her breeding by wishing the best for Michael by getting Maria and being kind to Tess. Tess first met Kyle and Tess never quit loving him. You have to understand that Isabel doesn’t like being alone. She really does see that you stood by her twice at the risk of your own life. She would not find that in any of the nobles of Antar. I suggest that you never gloat when she does the right things. Never rub her nose in it when she does what you want her to, after a lot of argument. I suggest that you always let her believe that she was thinking about correct actions, even when she is declaring she would not be caught dead doing them,” Max explained his sister.
--------------------------------
Stories by Ken
Last edited by ken_r on Thu Mar 27, 2014 3:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

User avatar
ken_r
Obsessed Roswellian
Posts: 860
Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 11:34 pm
Location: New Mexico

Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 15, pg10 Mar 27, 2014

Post by ken_r » Sun Mar 30, 2014 12:32 pm

Now i am back on schedule.

Keepsmiling7:

L-J-L 76:

Natalie36:


Chapter 17

“Maria, you need to get all of your personal things and move them into my old apartment,” Liz said. That was the trouble in the main house. It was so big and had so many rooms, that looking for someone could be time consuming and difficult.

“Liz, where are you going?” Liz ‘s apartment was off the rooms of Max. Was the king moving Maria closer to himself? Maria asked herself.

“I think the king has asked or, maybe, ordered me to move in with him,” Liz explained.

“In with him, what does this mean?” Maria asked in surprise.

“That is just what I said. It isn’t as if I was getting any other offers. Working for the king, he wouldn’t trust me to be dating any other Antarians. By the time my contract is up, I will be over 40 and that is not a good age to return to Earth. The king doubts how long Earth will last anyway. I have been wondering what was to happen to me. Now, I know. I am to move in with the king,” Liz declared.

‘Hey, wait a minute, chica! Moving me into your old apartment that is right off your bedroom. Won’t that cramp your style?” Maria asked.

“Maria, I haven’t got any style. Remember that keeping my grade point average high didn’t leave much time to develop any thing called ‘style.’ I surely haven’t had any free time since I arrived on Antar. I am at the king’s call every minute,” Liz said a bit flustered.

“Honey, it is like that first night when I was on the slave ship. Do what ever he says and only answer when he directly asks you anything. That got me through some difficult time,” Maria cautioned.

-------------------------

Maybe, Maria would have better talked to Isabel. When Alex walked into the bedroom that night, he found a pair of shorts set out for him. He didn’t see anything of Isabel. He did hear someone moving around in the next room. There were many chirps and cheeps. Something like a step ladder was being dragged from place to place. Then, there would be more cheeps. Finally, two creatures came out of the room. They were about three feet tall and covered all over in a light creamy fur. Their faces were a cross between a little girl and a cat. Maybe, the twitching whiskers reminding Alex of a cat, added to the mystery. Of course, Alex had seen cats only in picture books back on Earth. The little ears rotated like two antennas catching every sound. They came up to Alex and pulling at his shorts, they made him bend down. Their little hands touched his face and Alex felt a very warm sensation. Under their fur, Alex saw what were definitely mammalian breasts. Both the creatures turned towards each other and like children at a game, they made their squeaks and holding hands they ran out of the room. Isabel entered.

This was an Isabel Alex had never seen. Her hair had been tinted gold and her lips were bright as rubies. Her fingernails were long and carefully tapered. Their color matched her lips. Gone were the broken fingernails from scratching in the dirt during their time of hiding. Her breasts were jutting out with excitement or from whatever the creatures had done to her. Just hanging onto the curves of her breasts was a gossamer gown. It had a thin strap going over her shoulders, also. It wasn’t that he could see through the gown, but that the gown mirrored every contour of her body. This was the woman who stole Samson’s power, the woman who launched a thousand ships, the woman the king had asked to share her bed with Alex. As he approached, she did something to the straps holding the dress and it fell slowly to the floor like a cloud.

Isabel and Alex had experienced sex before. Now, Isabel looked up into Alex’s eyes and said softly, “The king has ordered me to be whatever you want.”

Alex led her over to her bed and sitting he said, “Stand before me.”

Alex reached up and placed his hands on each side of her body. When he did so, Isabel closed her eyes tightly. Alex didn’t know what she was thinking, but as he also, closed his eyes. His fingers ran over her body like the fingers of a blind man. His hands worked to the taper of her waist, then to the curves of her hips, running down the soft smoothness of her thighs, Alex was building another picture of Isabel in his memory. The entire time he could feel her body quivering at his touch. Standing, turning then, pushing Isabel back onto their bed, Alex crawled up beside her and now with his eyes open, he took in her whole body.

There was nothing fake or forced about Isabel tonight. Max’s words rang in Alex’s ears. “Alex, don’t ever say anything to Isabel when she is doing what you want. Accept what she does and ignore her words. Let her have the little victories of rebellion she always wants.” Well, that wasn’t quite what Max had said, but Alex thought he was beginning to understand the woman who had been given to him by the king.

It wasn’t the sex so much as it was Isabel afterward, laying her head on his chest letting her fingers play with his body. Alex had always before felt that Isabel was playing a game with him. It was a game Alex could never be sure who was winning. No games to night, Max was right, when Isabel made up her mind, she put heart and soul into what she did for Alex. She treated Alex to scenes of growing up that he would learn were artificial as Isabel’s early memories were given to her when the clone body was brought to life. He also was treated to a whirlwind tour through royal society. It mainly was the rejection of her many suitors.

When Alex woke up the next morning, it was Isabel returning from her shower. She had walked past their bed dressed in thin panties, which were almost universal with the females of the royal families. Isabel stood looking in her closet making that always so difficult decision about what to wear. Alex quietly stood and quietly walked up behind Isabel. By her manner, the slight turn of her head, the tilting to bring one ear closer to his direction, Alex was aware that she knew he was there. Alex had no idea of why he took his next action. Walking up to Isabel, Alex all the time was staring at her back. From the valley of her back between her shoulders, to the crack in her ass, Alex could feel himself swelling with desire. As he drew beside her, he brought his hand smartly against her butt. Even as the stinging spread across his hand, Alex wanted to take back that move. His hand, feeling the flesh of her curves, grabbed a firm hold onto her person. Because of his grip, Isabel was able only to turn her upper body, but Alex could clearly see the fire in her eyes. He could smell the ozone and see the crackling sparks as energy flowed between her fingers. Since Isabel had been a clone, authorized by the king to be in her late teen years, she had never had a childhood where loving swats might be given for direction. Nobody had ever touched her person in this way.

As quickly as her temper had risen, reason returned to Isabel. She had been given to Alex by the king. She had no idea of why he did what he did, but it was within his right. Isabel with lowered eyes said, “Yes, Alex?” This came out as a question.

“Isabel, I love you,” Alex whispered.

“As I love you also,” she replied. Isabel could feel his bare manhood growing and becoming wet as they stood there kissing. Isabel was wearing only her panties and Alex was naked as he stood before her. Isabel’s butt still stung, but no longer did she see this as an affront. Maybe, this was something new that she would have to accommodate in her relationship with this Earther.

Isabel returned to her bed as she changed her panties. It was a small price to pay for what she would come to expect from Alex.



----------------------------

Max was king. He served at the pleasure of the council. In times of emergency, the council members could, with the symbolic gesture of all folding their hands on the council table, allow king Zander 24th to rule absolutely. Another symbolic gesture of all the council members unfolding and joining their hands should return the government back to normal. Zander 21st had been a real jerk. That was a lot better than the description given him by history. In the face of an attempted coup, he had assumed absolute power. When the emergency was over, he refused to let go of the perceived power he had wielded over the government. He proclaimed the council a bunch of old fools and refused to step back to his normal position of ruling at their pleasure. Old fools is a contradiction sometimes. The council didn’t get old by being foolish. Zander 21st didn’t last out the day. His wife had been pushing him all along. She was executed at the same time. Her history had been lost in time. The Rath clone served out the remainder of what should have been Zander 21st’s rule. Vilandra, clone of the sister of the king, simply watched as the politics played out.

Max, that is Zander 24th, was brought forth in a time of turmoil. Zander 23rd had been assassinated along with severely wounding the clone of Rath. The Vilandra clone at that time was growing old. She would take over until a new Zander was brought fourth. Then, she retired to obscurity along with the badly wounded Rath, whom she would care for and it was left to Zander 24th to order a new Rath and a new Vilandra. The mate of Zander 23rd had died when they were very young and Zander 23rd had seen no reason to replace her. Though the rule of the Zanders had been relatively peaceful there had been squabbles among the planets and much history had been misplaced in this time. This Zander, Rath and Vilandra all being about the same age, took on personal names, which was not unusual for the rulers and started to form and develop the government given to them. Rath, now Michael, and Vilandra now Isabel, did attempt to form a union, but the genetics didn’t fit right. There was no one for the king. Women from Antar Four were some of the most aggressive in trying to attract the king’s favor. That was when the king announced that he wanted to bring in new blood.

Liz was but a child in some societies when at 16, she signed a contract with Antar. A year of space travel and two years of further education brought her into the world of adults. Until she appeared in his office, Max had never had any contact with his contracted assistant. That didn’t mean that Max didn’t know everything possible about her personality, intelligence and character. Max the king had fallen in love with his assistant long before he ever saw her or shook hands with her on Antar.

-----------------------

Liz was as scared at the prospect of tonight as a bride before her wedding. Essentially, that is what she was. Back on earth, she had never had time for illicit dreams of romance and with the trials of education, she hadn’t had time to experience casual sex either.

Liz met Max as a girl/woman who had never had time for passion. That didn’t mean that she didn’t hope for passion. The stories from Maria about the prince, who would carry them away, were locked in her dreams. Liz was a virgin in every way. Her experience as assistant to Max the king, earned him her respect.

Leaving the company of Ech and Och dressed in the filmy nightdress and their spells of romance, Liz saw first, the man who called her to his bed and then, she saw Max as a man of passion like no one else had ever seen before.

What was the king offering here? If he carried this relation further, there were many secular things they would have to satisfy. The first time Isabel had felt that Liz was over stepping her boundaries, Isabel had asked what was Liz’s agenda. Liz thought back. She had been so naïve, so clueless that she had actually feared that the king would get the wrong idea. Now, Liz wondered if, maybe, the king had orchestrated everything that had happened to her, even before she was invited to interview with those not of this Earth. Max indicated that he always knew exactly what he wanted. Liz wondered if Max let Isabel into his plans. Probably not, as Max was the king and a king has to have some secrets. What made Liz think she could be the … of the king? What was she to be? Was she his official mate? His official lover? Or, something else? Max had invited her to his bed. He called her his wife, but Liz could only ask what had been his intentions. Maybe that is all there was to it. No official anything.

Could Liz accept that? It must be that she could, because Liz saw herself with the two creatures Ech and Och. Liz began to wonder, was there something magical about the king? No one refused his request. All the time she had been with the king, Liz had looked for, but not found any trace of his sex or social life, whatever they called it here. Maybe, if Liz had known the extent that Isabel had given into Alex at the king’s order, she would have been even more worried.

Liz caught herself wondering about Maria and Michael. Michael held Maria but he also owned her. Did everything Maria do, go back to the reality that she had no choice? Was there any way that Maria was experiencing romantic love? Maria must have degrees in sex, from the stories of her trip from Earth in the slave ship. Was that all she meant to Michael?

What about herself? Did Liz have choices? Maybe sometime in the past, she could have accepted failure and sank into the squalor of equality. Once she passed that second door at her interview, everything had channeled up to this. Liz was going to be in the bed of the king at his request which she was sure was a demand in reality. From position and personality, the king was aloof from mundane things of the kingdom. Was he looking for romance? Did he even understand romance? Frightening, the thought came forth, did the king just want an incubator for the continuance of his genes?

The two small creatures, which Liz had come to know did wonders in beauty treatments, gave her a black gown that was of almost spider web material. Liz hadn’t had time to study insect type life on Antar, but she thought this gown shows there must be some way to gather the raw material from them. If indeed, that was where it came from. Unlike webs back on Earth, there was no stickiness to it. It was processed to be ridiculously light and soft. When the two beauticians raised it above Liz’s head, it floated down to embrace her body. Of course any idea of where the magic material really came from was completely unknown to Liz. Her mental ramblings were nothing more than nervousness. Without looking, Liz could imagine that she wasn’t wearing anything. Finally, the chirps and cheeps told Liz that the two masters were finished, this brought Liz down from her random thoughts. Liz had been prepared for her night with the king.

She was shown to his bedroom and the creatures retreated with many clicks and purrs that Liz took to mean, “Good luck, m’lady.” Max entered to sit on his bed. Liz wasn’t quite sure what to expect. He was the king, but he would be facing her as a man. Liz stood and closed her eyes as she felt him walk around her. She reached for the straps of her gown. The creatures had shown her how to simply pull a string on each side to let the gown fall. Max pushed her hands away, “let me do it,” he commanded. Flashes shot through Liz’s mind as to how expert was Max at pulling the “strings” which uncovered her.

Liz didn’t feel anything until the gown had floated to her ankles. It was then she opened her eyes to look into the face of the king. The king, even when she was being escorted on his arm, was still the king. Now his warm breath and intimate touches caused shivers as somehow Liz crossed the line to see him as a powerful man, but still a man. Seeing Max this way didn’t lessen Liz’s respect for him. Max did not need the same support as did Michael, but he did need to have someone with whom he had great affection, respect and could learn to love. Max was the first person who had ever held Liz close and whispered endearments into her ear. Max was the first man who had ever told Liz that he wanted her to be the mother of his children. Liz would be the mother of the first birth in the house of the king since Zander the first. Fortunately, Liz didn’t know this, since she didn’t yet know Max’s full intention to her. Being the first royal mother in centuries would frighten her to death
He swept her into his arms and placed her in his bed. Liz didn’t know what to expect as now, the king made love to his associate. He made love to the woman he had studied from afar for years. He wasn’t in bed with a highly trained courtesan or a lady of noble birth who had learned her art from the courtiers of the land, but he wasn’t a candidate for experienced lover of the year himself. His Liz was a simple girl from a declining planet who, many, believed would bring new life to Antar. Max was a simple king, whose pleasures were a real wood fire and a Ragg wool blanket. Max was lonesome and he was under the pressure to purify the royal line. A woman to lay under him, to straddle over him and afterward, a woman to walk with him, her head resting on his naked body, a woman whom he could trust, that was what he was searching for.

They lay there like an experienced couple, the king pulling Liz close to him as he slept. Liz still didn’t know what to expect. The only fireworks were visions of a lonely man searching the universe for a companion. Liz wondered what visions Max had seen in her. Was Liz in love? She had no reference in experience or thought about love. Liz could not conceive enduring the life Maria had experienced on the slave ship. There was no way that Liz could envision herself as a sex object. Deep down, Liz knew that if she had been forced into that life, she could have survived, but she did not see herself talking about the experience as light heartedly as she saw Maria. Liz felt that in that situation, she would show a lot more resentment. In intimate conversations, Maria had discussed with Liz the difference between having sex with the space ship crew and loving Michael. Now for the first time, Liz had the inclination and time to ask over and over, what was love? Take Maria, for instance. As a little girl, it was Maria who always had the dreams of handsome princes coming to carry her away to fame and fortune. She had been forced to give up these dreams for the difficulty of her studies in music and finally a loss of control of to whom she would be sent. Then, the fates had traded these skills for servitude, to the one man who owned her. Had Maria found love with the second of the king? Was he the prince who carried her away? Was some unknown spirit, guide or something else, caring and guiding both Liz and Maria?

Again, Liz asked herself, “What was Love?” What about the king’s sister? Had she found love? Isabel had brought Alex to her bed after she had been assaulted in her own bedroom. Whatever they had, had quickly worn thin by the time of the invasion of the compound. It wasn’t as if Isabel had poured out her soul for all to see, but Liz heard things and some of the things she heard were not pleasantries from the princess. Liz had heard Alex say that they had been arguing when he detected the presence of the enemy. Whatever machine the enemy had used had paralyzed Isabel. Liz had heard talk that the king’s scientists were still studying the mechanism. Liz and Kyle had captured the only prisoner. He had been quickly sedated to prevent his using any powers to escape.

Liz had to ask herself what was Isabel looking for? Then, she asked what was she looking for and what was Maria finding?

------------------
Isabel was a free woman, she was even part of the royal family, but Isabel wasn’t above the wishes of the king. Alex had tried to tease her once about accusing Max of frivolous designs. For Isabel to have answered this comment, Isabel would have been close to treason. Max’s desire for her to accept Alex to her bed, which was really a royal command, could not be ignored. In all respects, Isabel had little more choice than did Maria. The king’s command must be obeyed. “Alex, she has to fight with herself before she does what she is supposed to do, anyway.” That was the way Max put Alex’s question about where Isabel was off to.

Isabel had been courted by Lotharios, men who made sex a profession. If someone had called Maria a whore, at least she was being honest. Maria, on the slave ship, had done what she did to survive. Men and women who courted the royal couple used their skills as tools to gain power. Alex, backed up by Kyle, promised that Isabel would never again suffer their attention.

Alex was a strong man both physically and intellectually. Isabel would stay with him because she had been, so ordered by the king. Isabel also, knew that Alex had been her best choice as a mate. Isabel still trembled as she faced him that first time after Max made his commands. She and Alex had had sex before and the ardor had been cooling, causing their argument. Max had removed any doubt and silenced their argument. By his command, Isabel was to stay with Alex. By Max’s command, they were to no longer play at love, but to form serious commitments.

In the room of the king’s sister, at the orders of the king, could Isabel find love? Now, Alex was happier than he had ever been in his life. He had accepted that Isabel was with him at the orders of the king. Alex was intimate with the woman who was sought by courtiers across the kingdom. With the king’s advice, Alex hoped to generate love in the princess with his two gifts, loyalty and adoration. She had done everything that he could want, as if, maybe, reading his mind.

The king had ordered Isabel back to the bed of Alex. The one woman who fought almost everything he said, quietly acquiesced. Isabel had been known to argue with Max for hours. Of course, when the king made requests or maybe orders, Isabel quietly accepted. Even his sister knew better than to argue when his mind was made up.

Something had happened that night in the cave with Alex. Somehow Isabel had found something not found before. It was days before Isabel even realized it. Visions kept streaming of Antarian suitors defying all odds to protect the person of the Princess. The visions were pretty skimpy. The royal blood of Antar was running weak. Not many men, pretty to look at, would dig deep into the mud to save the princess. Not many men of the royal family would put the princess’s safety before their own. Alex was loyal, intelligent and caring. It took time for these things to soak into Isabel to the point that she believed she had found love.

-----------------

Liz had seen Kyle as a simpler man. Kyle had worked with women in combat before. In the past while in the barracks and on leave, Kyle might screw around with anyone, but on patrol and in combat, women were only softer buddies you depended on to keep your back. As Combat buddies would do, Kyle had opened up to Liz a lot about his life before and after Antar, while stalking through the forest during their training runs. “Liz, at first I thought she was the town whore, sent in to get information from the prisoner. Whatever these aliens do to your brain, I found that Tess was far from any whore. Any soldier knows that your obligation is to protect any information, even under torture if possible, but when they go into your brain, then give it up. You have lost and any more resistance was only cause more pain, besides that, I had no great secrets to protect. I wouldn’t screw the captain of the pirate ship and that wasn’t exactly a secret. What I saw in Tess made me fall in love. She wasn’t like any other woman. Beside that she wanted me. Wanting me, not as a source of information, but as someone who would bring comfort to her forever. That didn’t happen much back on Earth and as a slave and a soldier I hadn’t expected it to happen here, now.”

Kyle went on to talk about Isabel. He thought that she might be coming on to him, around these people his senses were many times dulled. That Tess woman had disappeared; maybe, she was some agent of the king. Isabel gave herself to Kyle until he was about to go crazy. Then, she grabbed his hand and said something about this not being right. When Kyle found himself at the apartment of the princess’s slave, Kyle thought the fates were serving him well. A soldier takes what he finds and tries to make happiness out of it. Was Kyle madly in love with Tess? Was Tess in love with Kyle? Tess had been prepared to be a slave her whole life. She accepted that Isabel’s commands must always be obeyed. Suddenly, someone loved her because he wanted to. Isabel sent him back to Tess, but no commands could have produced the passion she found in Kyle. Kyle was very experienced in the world. He told Tess that every love, every tumble, was only to bring himself closer to her. That could well be the soldier talking, but Liz knew that Tess hoped he truly meant it. Tess knew that Isabel could, in a single command, bring everything crashing down. She could only hope that the majesty, Isabel had shown so far, remained.

If Liz had known all of this would she have worried even more about generating love in the king? That remained to be seen.

-------------------

The next morning Liz asked, “Max, how much of what has happened to me is fates and how much has been manipulated by those of Antar?”

Max chuckled. “They said you would figure it out sooner or later. How much has Antar manipulated you? Maybe about twenty-five percent of your life was planned. The royal bloodline grows thin. The ministers of Antar have been studying about half a dozen planets and cultures. Four women from Earth had been chosen. One was killed in a tragic accident. Two others made it to Antar and now, are happily joined to diplomats who serve the monarchy. You made it further than anyone. A lot of that was fate. No one planed on Kyle being part of my security system. Thus no one planned for you to become a commando to help him. That was strictly fate and that was what tipped the scales in your favor. That, and the fact, that I have strong feelings for you. The studies of women across the galaxy will continue, but no one else will be brought to Antar for the king. There are many other men of power who are considering women from not here. For a while, trying to keep Isabel from pressuring him, Michael was considered for a contract woman from somewhere else. That search has been canceled. I don’t think we could beat Isabel’s last choice of Maria for him.
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Stories by Ken
Last edited by ken_r on Mon Apr 07, 2014 1:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

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ken_r
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Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 17, pg11 Mar 30, 2014

Post by ken_r » Mon Apr 07, 2014 1:49 pm

HypotiqBlueEyes:

Roawelllostcause: Max had started a search off Antar for an assistant whom he thought might become his wife. Liz isn't sure what Max means by the word wife. Remember words don't translate sometimes. Liz wasn't told that she would be working for the king. It is doubted that Mr. Summers even knew who she was for. Liz will have many thoughts about what she feels for Max. She was removed from her parents at the age of three an put in boarding school with a very hard study plan. Feelings were not part of her studies.

saori_1902

begonia9508: Max comes from a line of clones over 1000 years old. Max was quickened to life at the apparent age of 17-20. life spans between Antharians and Earth people are all messed up so that he appears like an Earthman in his middle thirties. Max has to answer to some sort of council and they want to change the clone system of cloning and bring in new blood. Liz doesn't know where she fits in his life. Her position will probably be that of her own ability. Liz has many changes and things to do.




Chapter 18

It was almost a year before Michael returned. The people of Antar Four had selected a representative form of government. Rulian’s family had been voted out. It took some time, but finally, Michael saw the reasons for moving his apartment into the main house. Michael had always enjoyed his personal privacy. Security for Maria had been the main point of favor for the move. Michael had no fear for himself, but Maria was something else. She needed protection above all else. When he had to leave Maria at home, Max was right; inside the main house near Max’s own room was safer. Michael would have to travel to Antar Four many times. Max and the council felt that appearing with Maria would enhance his position as still being regent. Antar Four was entrusted with their own government, but a gentle presence of the king would be always remind them of the two families who failed badly. Maria moved her recording studio back to the main house.

Isabel was still a thorn in Michael and Max’s sides. It was only Alex to whom she showed any sign of submission and that, usually, was only after extended discussions.

-----------------------

This time when Michael returned to Antar Four, Maria was with him. Michael wasn’t into fanfare, but he wanted everyone to know who was boss and he wanted them to know that Maria was his woman. They didn’t arrive in a “ship of the line.” The fast space yacht, which had carried Maria to him during the period of unrest, landed. It had been transferred to Michael’s command. Michael, in his dress uniform along with Maria on his arm, walked to the waiting land transport to take them to the government house. When Michael had turned the house back to the Antar Four government, he had ordered that an extensive apartment be set-aside for the king’s representatives. Maria walked beside Michael dressed in one of her, now famous golden dresses. Once settled in their apartment, she put on one of his shirts as usual. Only the most trusted household staff was allowed in these rooms. Those living and working in the government house did make notice of the music, which came from the king’s private apartment.

Stories also leaked out about the fabulous creature who walked before the regent dressed in only a long, men’s shirt. Of course when she appeared in public, Maria was usually dressed in a very provocative golden dress. With the high slits in the sides and the low cut of the bosom, her public appearances could be said to be more moving and revealing than the rumored private ones. With household servants around their apartment most of the time, Michael was more careful of making love to Maria. Gone were the marathons of starting at the door and continuing to the bedrooms leaving a string of cast off clothes. Here, Michael was more prone to take Maria by the hand and lead her to their bedrooms before touching any other part of her body. Only behind locked doors did the old Michael come out. It was true that many times he placed his finger on her lips if her moans were getting too loud. Michael had position to consider. The minds of the household staff probably made their bedroom activities even wilder than reality.

Michael was gone many of the days. He held many meeting with the provisional government. Rulian’s family had lost out in power and since most of those related to Tess had been executed, a new family undertook to form a government. The days when Michael was out, Maria spent writing music and practicing an Antarian instrument much like the old sitar from Earth. Like the sitar, this instrument had a seedpod for a sound chamber. Also much like the sitar, this instrument had strings to be strummed as well as strings that acted like drones vibrating from the frequencies of the sound board. It was a strange instrument for Maria and there didn’t appear any formal directions as to tuning it. Maria had mastered a few songs on this instrument. She certainly wasn’t going to give up her guitar for it. They were invited to an afternoon gathering on the condition Maria would play both what she had learned about Antarian music as well as some of her Earth songs. This led to concerts throughout the planet. Michael saw this as a wonderful public relations move, not that he was into that sort of thing.

Some of the Antar Four families had taken Earth slaves into their midst. The Earthies looked forward to hearing things from their youth. No matter how your personal situations might change, songs from the past were always cherished.

----------------------

Liz contacted the head of the household staff, Kateen. “Send Rulian to me. I have other uses for her, now.”

Whether it be Tess, Maria or someone in a lowly position like Rulian, being summoned by their master, brought fear to a slave. The one thing that could not be made up for was the uncertainty. When she arrived, Rulian saw the king’s sister also waiting for her. Rulian bowed her head as she entered. Isabel reached out and took her right arm. Rulian felt a warmth and saw the black iron bracelet dissolve into black dust. Liz came to her and with a cloth soaked in some antiseptic solution, she wiped all the dust off her arm. Then Isabel took a golden bracelet and fastened it about Rulian’s wrist. Rulian was unsure of what happened, but it seemed that she had been promoted. She wasn’t anymore a kitchen slave to do all the work that the freewomen didn’t want to do. Now, she was the personal slave of the king’s assistant. She didn’t know all the technicalities that Liz couldn’t own slaves, so in reality Rulian belonged to the king. All she understood was that now, she had to answer to Liz personally.

With Maria back living with Michael, Liz moved Rulian into the apartment which adjoined the kings quarters. Sometimes Rulian was assigned to help one of the other ladies in the king’s family, but her position was taking on better definition. Max was present and he spoke up. “Rulian, your family has lost power and they have abandoned you. You have served the period of the court’s proscribed hard labor. Now, you will formally be under the direction of the king’s assistant. Remember Liz at all times has the king’s ear as well as his bed. I want to put the Antar Four problem behind us. I am asking you to change your name to Serina and from now on, your past is only known to the king’s closest family.” Many of the old contracts on Rulian were rewritten and Serina was born.

When Serina moved into the apartment near to the king’s bed chamber she noticed that a wardrobe has been set up for her. It had always been known that the king’s sister made sure that slave or free, the king’s family were all well dressed.

Now, Serina would set out the clothes for the king’s assistant, of course under Isabel’s direction.

Serina did find a special request. “Serina, most of the royal families have at least some ability in healing. Do you?” Liz asked one evening after she had returned from a session of commando training.

Her time in the kitchen and the knowledge that she owed her life to the king’s assistant, made Serina a little formal, even though she had been told that in the family, names were the choice of address. “Yes, m’lady, I am sorry, Liz,” Serina said as she slightly bowed to her mistress. “I have some ability, I am not in any way equal to the king.” Serina wondered at the question. Liz had the king’s bed, why didn’t she ask him for any healing. That would have been more proper.

“I would just as soon not let the king know about this,” Liz said as she shook off her commando jacket. There was no immodesty here. Liz kicked off her boots and pulled down her pants. Serina saw that Liz was covered with bruises and abrasions. “Commando training can get a bit rough,” Liz stated.

Serina called Isabel. “I, know a little about healing, but would you guide me so I don’t hurt my mistress?” she asked.

“Liz, does Max know about this?” was Isabel’s first exclamation.

“You know perfectly well what Max would say. That is why I need to get rid of the evidence,” Liz retorted.

“Liz is all this pain worth it?” Isabel asked.

“Isabel, Max is getting reports of more and more of the enemy using those disrupters. I think we are going to have to ask for more Earthlings to help us. Izzy, you might think of calling Tess in and bringing her up to speed about helping Kyle with his healing. Kyle is becoming obsessed with the knowledge he might be the first line of defense of the king. I got these bruises by hitting hard and being hit back. I was giving Kyle as good as I was taking,” Liz stated.

Isabel sent word for Tess and then, she helped Liz into the shower. Isabel asked Tess to find a table and they set it up with a pad. Liz was drowsy when they helped her back to her bedroom. Lying on her stomach, Liz quickly fell asleep. Isabel gently slapped Liz’s face. “Liz, wake up. We need to get into your mind,” she commanded.

Liz’s eyes opened and Isabel had Serina make contact. “Once you start feeling thoughts that are not your own, then you can travel the body to find places of healing,” Isabel explained. “At first, you will be overwhelmed with the patient’s background and thoughts. After a few times, these will all seem to be in the usual background and you can ignore them. Liz is putting a lot of trust in you. As you might guess, betraying any of what you learn as a healer would be treason and this time no one could lessen your punishment. You probably would not even survive to a trial.” Even though they were removing Rulian from the kitchen and creating a new Serina, Isabel couldn’t help adding a warning as a reminder.

Having come so close to such terrible punishment, at first Serina was hesitant to proceed. “Serina, these were not requests. They were orders from the king’s assistant. You have to also be responsible for your loyalty,” Isabel ordered.

At first, Serina was stunned. Liz’s whole life in school on Earth was so foreign to that of the Antarian Monarchy that Serina thought she was drowning. She had to live through the doubt that Liz felt during the travel from Earth to Antar. Serina did remark to herself the friendship between Liz and Maria. It took several minutes for the flood of items to subside and a suggestion from Isabel to imagine a river and follow it looking for broken banks or water jambs. As soon as she worked out the mnemonics, Serina began to use her natural instincts to commence the healing.

For Tess, working with Kyle wasn’t that easy. He bore bruises as badges of honor. “Kyle, it isn’t necessary. Let me help you and you can better focus tomorrow,” Tess declared. Once allowed in, Tess had much the same trouble as Serina. Kyle’s life growing up was considerably more difficult than hers. Teresa had always known that she would never have a life of freedom. When she became of age, she always knew she would be taken to Antar and sold. Fortunately, this was to the royal family. She always knew how badly that could have gone. The luck of being with Isabel, was one of the things Tess was always thankful for. Kyle had always fought for a freedom that never existed. School, to the military, to exile, Kyle had always been fighting for someone else. His own freedom was always a dream just out of reach. Tess also saw in Kyle that like Sampson, Kyle feared to allow anyone to know too much about him; mystery was his power. The feelings he had the next morning with Tess’s help, was the clincher for Kyle to even more, value his mate.

Nobody considered Maria a candidate for commando training, so that left the only other Earthling, Alex. The rigorous training in route to Antar had changed the thin geek. The early morning runs with Isabel and sometimes Tess kept him in shape. What he needed to change into commando thinking, was his mind set. Defending Isabel had gone a long way to develop that. Kyle would have to train Alex to work as a team member and Alex had to have in mind that success meant the will to keep living, no matter what he faced. Training with Liz, helped her to learn to depend on teammates.

--------------------------

It was one evening when Michael came home. He was holding a young girl by the arm and as he entered, he ordered her to sit on a bench by the door. The scream from Maria was heard through out the main house. “Michael, how could you?” she screamed. Maria had seen the girl and her gold bracelet and her mind went into overdrive. “Do you think I am too old for you anymore? Michael, she is a child. Do you have a harem hidden somewhere? How many women do you have?” The questions were all rhetorical as Maria gave Michael no time to answer.

Finally, Michael grabbed Maria by her shoulders and pinned her so at least her arms couldn’t take part in the tantrum. “Maria,” he shouted, “Remember your place! I can bring home whom I chose and I expect you to treat them with courtesy.”

This brought a sobering to Maria faster than anything else could do. Maria was Michael’s slave. He had given her considerable freedom, because he was very satisfied with her. Maria didn’t know anything about the customs of Antar. The time she had been on Antar were all about Michael, the king and her friend, Liz. Were groups of women the usual for men in important places? If so, then Michael had the right to bring in new stock when it pleased him. The girl was clearly a slave girl and what little Maria had seen of her she was from Earth. Maria remembered the words of Margret, “We are becoming in great demand.” Maria sat, trying to catch her breath. In the time since she had left Earth, Maria had learned a lot about her station. She compared the freedom she had with Michael to her year of service on the slave ship. Now, maybe, her conditions were reverting to that first year. Maria finally caught her breath and sitting with her hands folded in her lap, her head bowed, Maria whispered, “Yes, Michael, I am sorry. It won’t happen again.”

Michael slapped his head with his palm. Women, bound or free, they were confusing. “Maria, you don’t understand,” he said.

“Michael, I don’t have to understand, it is my place to accept your will. I will welcome your new girl and help her in any way I can,” Maria said without raising her eyes to look at him.

Maria started to rise and Michael quickly grabbed her arm. “Maria, sit down and listen. This is my command,” Michael said sternly. Maria sat back down, still not raising her eyes to look at him. “Maria, Earth is falling apart even faster than we thought. The Lucille I is a sister ship to the Isabella II. It captured a rogue slaver about six months out from Earth. According to the ships log, the rogue slaver cut a deal with an Earth politician. It had a complement of mixed men and women slaves along with 20 girls who were first year students in their final education. Don’t you see, Maria, these girls hadn’t failed the system. They had barely entered the system. Their sale was strictly for money. The politicians of Earth are selling their own people for no reason other than greed,” To Michael the situation was intolerable. To Maria, the situation was still one, which brought another woman, no matter how young, into the household. The matter of her young age hurt Maria even more.

“Michael, I will do my job,” Maria murmured.

“Maria, you still don’t understand. I didn’t bring her home for me. I brought her for you. Max and I want to see if you could start a school for children in music, as it seems we are going to see more and more of this in the future,” Michael informed her.

“What about the other children?” Maria quietly asked.

“They are still owned by the monarchy, but other families are trying to help in setting up educational programs,” Michael said.

“Michael, I remember Kyle saying that language classes on the rogue ship, which had captured him, were basic to say the least. I can help the girl with her music, but I don’t know how to teach language. How were the conditions for the girls on the rogue ship?” Maria asked.

Michael scratched his head. There was no way to put this politely and maybe, the situation was best, faced head on. “Maria, for all the slaves, the situation was as bad as you can imagine, the young girls included. They all faced the same as you did.”

This time when Maria stood up, Michael didn’t stop her. He followed her out into the hall and saw Maria say, “Hi, my name is Maria and I am to help you adjust to Antar.”

The girl’s eyes didn’t leave the bracelet she saw on Maria’s arm. “I am called Annie, at least that is what they used to call me,” the girl responded.

Maria took Annie’s hand and led her to a spare room off Michael’s bedroom. Maria’s mind had reverted from their bedroom to Michael’s. She wasn’t sure what her new position in Michael’s life would be anymore. It was a short matter of time before the household staff set up a bed and wardrobe for their new tenant. Maria opened the wardrobe and selected casual clothes. “Please shower and dress. I will take you to the dining room.”

When they entered the dining room, Maria halted. “Everyone this is Annie, Michael is holding her papers.” Then Maria turned to Annie, I will let everyone introduce themselves as they go. I know that trying to remember too many names is confusing.”

Liz detected a little resentment. She also, wondered what was Michael’s relationship to this girl. Something had stirred Liz’s old friend considerably.
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

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ken_r
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Re: Apocalypse, CC, mature, ch 18, pg11 Apr 7, 2014

Post by ken_r » Sun Apr 13, 2014 12:15 pm

begonia9508: We are all slaves someway. See author's note.

sauri_1902:

Roswelllostcause:

keepsmiling7: The school idea will grow.


Author’s note: In the next chapters there is going to be internal musings and dialog about the fiction of freedom. Kyle fights for freedom, but it is freedom for others. The soldier is always the slave of his unit. Back on Earth, freedom was curtailed for the good of the state and personal industry was portioned out to those who lacked industry or any other real productivity. Maria is going to see that her self-fulfillment will be in belonging to Michael. Even the king is not totally free. He must answer to somebody.

Chapter 19

When Michael announced that he was ready for bed, Maria waited at the bedroom door. “Do you want me tonight or do you want someone else?” Maria asked.

“Maria, for the last time, I am not into little girls! Someone has to hold her papers. On Antar you must be a citizen, a member of some family of note, hold a contract for work or be under slave papers. Remember, we don’t have what you had on Earth, a welfare system,” Michael stated.

“Our history says it worked for a couple hundred years,” Maria replied petulantly.

“Yes, until your politicians learned to take from those who worked and give it to those who do nothing, including themselves. Then, it all fell apart. Now you have those same politicians selling Earth’s population for their own profit.

All night in the king’s bed, Liz had a question and even on the way to their office she was still trying to word it correctly. She might have asked Isabel or Tess, but they were too involved with their society, they probably wouldn’t understand Liz’s need to ask. In the morning as Liz was reading the king’s schedule, she finally turned to him and asked, “Isn’t slavery growing on Antar with all the Earthlings who are coming in?”

Max looked up and leaned back. “Yes, Liz both contractees and slaves from Earth seem to be multiplying.”

“Max, why not give all the new Earth people contracts instead of placing them in slavery?” Liz asked.

“Liz, to hold a contract, both parties need to be gaining something. What would you suggest that the girl Annie has to give anyone? As a slave someone will guarantee her care and safety. Eventually, someone will find a place for her in our society,” Max stated.

“Max, from what I have heard, she was badly abused by the slavers on the rogue ship,” Liz commented.

“Yes, and the captain is dead and the rest of the crew are in chains. I can’t give Annie back the six months she spent on the rogue ship, but I can hope that Michael and Maria taking care of her will give her a better future,” Max explained.

“Max, Maria is worried as to what Annie’s relationship to Michael will be. She feels displaced,” Liz stated.

“Has Maria given Michael any reason to be displeased? No, then I think we can be assured that she will still be in his bed for a long time. Michael was looking for Maria to find something meaningful in Annie’s life, when he asked for the papers on her. Michael wants Maria, eventually, to set up a school in music. Romance with Annie was the furthest from his mind,” Max said.

“Max, can you guarantee the other girls won’t be abused here like they were on the rogue ship?” Liz asked.

Max was slow to answer. “No, and you can’t guarantee that the girls remaining on Earth won’t find abuse either. Their safety just has a better chance here on Antar, than any place else. I can’t do anything about Earth. Here, at least, I have some control about what happens to them.”

------------------------

Michael and Kyle had been in private talks for some time. No one knew what the subject was. Finally, Michael announced to Max. “Kyle and I are thinking of making a special order with a registered slave ship. We are considering getting 20 fighting warriors from Earth. They will be the new security force for the compound and revitalize our own army. Reports are coming in from the rim of the monarchy. Disrupters are being used more and more. We need some top notch fighting men who won’t be bothered by disrupters.”

Max nodded. The idea was sound, but there were beginning sounds of complaints. “So many Earthers, you can’t shake a boing-boing without hitting one.” A boing-boing was sort of a walking stick used by gentlemen of Antar high society. Max knew that a slaver was the only way Michael could get the men he wanted. There was no way would Earth allow spacers to contract the caliber of men, Michael needed. The slaver Michael hired would contract with some individual politician and the men would be marked surplus on the Earth registry. At the last minute, Michael changed one thing. “Make at least five of them female,” he commanded the slaver.

Liz, Alex, Kyle and sometimes Michael trained almost every evening. No matter how badly Michael got hurt, he had healed himself by the next day. The holders of the Earth slave girls’ papers arranged for them to spend mornings in language classes and the afternoons carrying out projects for their owners. Maria worked every afternoon with Annie. “Annie, you were studying music and now, I am giving you the best of what Antar gave me,” Maria told her.

But, I will always be a slave?” Annie moaned in question.

“Annie, your fate is not the fault of Antar. As prisoners of a rogue slaver, you would have fared much worse if Antar hadn’t come along. Many of us think our fate, if we remained on Earth, would not have been much better, either. I was declared surplus by the authorities of Education. You were sold by a corrupt system which allows those in power to sell the one commodity Earth has plenty of, its citizens. If you had remained on Earth, what would have become of you? You were already a slave to the educational system. What were the odds that you could have beat out other musicians world wide? When you couldn’t go any further on earth what would you do? When would you have sold your body to continue staying in the system? What would you have sold when you were reduced into the masses? There are ways on Antar that you can use to better yourself. You have to see them when and if they come by. I am the concubine of the second most powerful man on Antar. I am hoping he will someday declare me as his wife. He also, holds your papers. You can hope that hard work will make him find a position for you.” Maria had grown comfortable with her life. The only uncertainty was her secret fears that she had shown when Michael brought Annie home. Now, Maria was doing her best to bury this worry and carry out Michael’s wishes. She amazed herself about how much she now believed about her fate.

It was later when Michael was off with Kyle working on their new project that Maria had time to voice her fears with Liz. “I couldn’t help it Liz. All I could think of was that Michael was trading me in like an old car. You know, getting a newer younger model. At first, the fact that I have no rights and I am only a slave drove me to anger. Then, I realized as a slave I have no rights, even the right of anger to what Michael does. As I did that night when I walked the first time down the passageway on the slave ship, I accepted the inevitable. I must accept what ever Michael does in every way.

“Maria, to us, the whole structure of Antar is strange. Who would have thought that the king would ask me to come to his bed and that I would go so willingly? I never questioned his orders in my mind. I still hope he means more than just a bedmate. I am still amazed at the relationship between Isabel and Tess. I see both of them all the time. Things are not always rosy, but always at the last minute, Isabel does the right thing. Tess supports her. Max told me that he suggested that Isabel take Alex to her bed. She was furious, but at the last minute, she called Alex and they have been reasonably content with the arrangement. Alex is studying for citizenship and when he gets it, he says that Isabel will be his wife. Look at Kyle. Max trusts him with compound security. Kyle still remains the slave of Isabel and she has sent him to Tess, because as she says, Tess needed him. These are not the actions we might see people do on Earth. Then, look at Max. He is king, but I don’t think he is pulling all the strings. There is that strange thing about being a clone from someone living at some fortress. This is the same with your Michael and the king’s sister Isabel. Maria, as hard as we study, we are far from understanding Antar,” Liz repeated.

“And look at you, Liz. An Earth girl contracted to work for the king and best friends with a slave from Earth and holding a political slave from a dissident planet,” Maria replied.

“That is what I mean, Maria. We don’t understand the social structure of Antar,” Liz answered. “We don’t even understand our own actions here.

------------------------

Michael was holding Maria way too tightly. After the last few days, Maria wasn’t about to complain. Michael had complete trust in Maria. The golden bracelet assured Michael that Maria would remain with him as long as he wanted. Isabel and Tess had been right. Maria could sooth the savage beast. When the dark feelings came over him, it was her singing and music, which calmed him. Being second to the king opened many demons. Michael was sure that Max had his own demons, but Max had given the orders and it was Michael, standing on the deck of the Isabella II, who saw the flames. It was Michael who felt the souls as they fled the holocaust. Michael wasn’t sure about life after death, but the entire population of a planet couldn’t be destroyed and not leave something behind. Whatever that was which had been left behind was what was torturing Michael’s mind. Michael firmly believed that there would be more times, when he was called to carry out the will of the king.

The destruction of the planet was terrible, but even Michael believed it was necessary. A planet on the rim had been dealing with the rogue pirates. The pirates had set up a base with refueling and repair facilities. Slaves, merchandise and information were being traded. The planet merchants were getting rich from the spoils taken from others. Max knew that, in no way, was their government not involved. The pirates had been open in their activity on this planet. It wasn’t a matter of fear, but pure greed which guaranteed the pirates safe haven. It was not lightly that Max gave the command to scrub the planet clean. It wasn’t lightly that Michael obeyed the king’s orders. Tell that to the souls ripped from their bodies with violence and who remained at large. These demons were what haunted Michael.

Only in front of the one person in the universe whom Michael trusted, did he allow himself the privilege of tears. She couldn’t see it yet, but Michael would never let Maria go. Maria was allowed to see a Michael that he had even hid from Isabel. Maria was his arc angel fending off the demons he had been forced to kill. With her knowledge of him, Maria could never be allowed to leave his side. She had seen his only major weakness, resulting from following his orders. When Michael thought about this, he hoped that she would never want to leave his side. With Maria, Michel held on to her with both a legal bond as well as an emotional one. For him, this was close to an expression of love.

Yes Michael trusted Maria, but for Maria, the trust in Michael was more difficult. Maria, by her very character, always expected a storm to rain on her balloons. That was why when Michael showed up with a slave younger than Maria, she lost her poise. The Maria that she believed she had left behind, in the many walks down the hallways of the slave ship, reappeared. The minute she exploded, Maria knew that she was wrong. She wasn’t a free woman from Earth. Michael owned Maria totally. In her mind’s wake of guilt and fault, Maria wondered what would happened if she had exploded like that back on Earth. She remembered the breakdown of a girl in her classes. The stress on the student broke through during a critique of her playing. The critique had been bitter. The student felt that the professor had it in for her and most of the class agreed. When he told her that she had the native ability of a cow, she screamed out at him. Still, the next day the student was gone and never heard from again. Maria shook her head. She had to face it. Tighter control on her outbursts had to be learned and her situation on Antar just made that more important. She called herself the concubine of the king’s second in command. She only hoped that Michael would always feel the same toward her. Maria desperately wanted to be more to Michael.

----------------------

Isabel and Alex were lying naked in her bed. “You weren’t satisfied with what I could give you before. You know that Max ordered me to let you into my bed, well he made a suggestion, but from the king that is an order. Half the nobles of Antar would be delighted with this situation. Entrance to the king’s sister with no strings attached to their part. You have seen everything in my life, both real and that which was implanted into my mind while I was a clone. My orders from the king are to do your bidding. Is this enough for you now?” she asked.

“No Isabel, this is but a reversal of what Maria has with Michael. I hold on to you by the king’s orders. Maria is held to Michael by the golden bracelet of indenture. I want two golden rings, which hold us together. We will disagree, we will have arguments, but the golden rings will always bring us back together. They will bind us forever, ” Alex stated.

Tears came to Isabel’s eyes, this declaration from Alex was, at once, the most brazen and the most endearing she could imagine. What Alex was proposing was a mutual indenture-ship, binding them both together legally. Marriage might have its ways to cancel itself. Even the king would have difficulty dissolving what Alex was proposing. Imagine the sister of the king agreeing to such a contract.

------------------------------

Kyle and Tess were joined when Isabel led Kyle across the hall to her bedroom. They were both owned by Isabel and she was the only one who could break them apart. Kyle, as a soldier, never expected any long range plans. He was grateful for what he could get and deep down he found strong feelings difficult. Growing up Tess always knew of her fate. She thought that it was fortunate chance, that Isabel, a member of the royal family, took her papers. In Tess’s mind, so many other things could have happened. In her mind, she might have been sold to an older statesman and forced to live at his pace. Tess still believed that she could have been sold to a house of pleasure and even though she believed that she would have been a big commodity at this place, there would have been very little pleasure for her. Isabel knew that it was her duty to hold Tess, but she knew that Tess, also was a princess. There might be lapses of courtesies when Isabel failed to understand the fall of a princess to servitude, but Isabel genuinely felt Tess to be her friend. Tess felt deeply about being Kyle’s lover. That again was good fortune, which could almost not be believed. Kyle might never be a power in the politics of the royal family, but Kyle was a powerful man in just his presence. Tess could feel this every time she took Kyle between her legs. As a princess who would never know about being a princess, Tess could still feel and recognize power.

Construction began on barracks for the 20 troopers Max had bought. Liz looking at the plans remarked, “Kyle, why do you house all 20 troopers, in the same barracks? Shouldn’t the female troops have separate quarters?

Kyle laughed. “Liz, that went out with the sexual equality act of 2016. But, don’t worry, if anyone crawls into any of those gal’s bunks without an invitation, he will be lucky if singing soprano is all that happens to him. We are going to train them separately because we want to use the female troops differently. Other than that, all 20 of them are equal.

Michael and Kyle’s troops arrived much faster than the normal travel between Earth and Antar. Michael had sent the Isabella II to pick them up.

--------------------

Because Earth still didn’t admit to the slave trade, there was some confusion when the troops entered the ship. At first, back on Earth when they had been ordered to march into the slave ship, they were not sure what would happen next. Being on the Isabella II their treatment was much better than it would have been if they had been on a standard slave ship. The treatment reserved for slaves, even on registered slave ships would have provoked rebellion in these trained troops. Slaves they may be, but Michael had bought fighting men and women. Could anyone imagine what might happen if one of the female troops were told to split her legs for one of the ships crew. That might be okay for simple slave girls, but a trained commando might start a rebellion, which would end in taking over the ship. At all times the slaves needed to be with men and women who understood them.

On this strange and foreign planet, as they were ordered to form up outside the huge ship of the line, they had even more doubt. When they heard Kyle speaking standard “One World English” they shaped up quickly, this they could understand. “Listen up, you ground monkeys. You ain’t fighting for Earth no more. To make things simple, look at it as you are fighting for me.” Kyle held up his bracelet and shouted. “See this yellow thing. You can’t get it off even if you cut your hand off. Remember this yellow thing means you take orders from me, or whoever I points to. I wear one just like you do and I have my orders. If you try to run, you got so many I.D. tags floating around your blood stream, that we will know where you are even two weeks after you’re dead. Don’t go getting no ideas that you can get your ass shot off and get out of this outfit. I got people who can bring you back to life and you will fight as zombies for as long as I say. Another thing, people around here don’t speak the king’s English or any other standard languages, so get your butts in gear and start learning the local talk. When I left Earth, the survival rate in the military was ten percent. You do what you are told and I can promise that you we will have less than ten percent causalities.”

Kyle marched his men to the waiting land transports and from there they traveled to the compound of the king.
Good teachers are born that way, not made. No! Good human beings, are born that way. Some of them become teachers.

Of course, life is not fair. You shouldn't expect it to be fair, but you should expect it to be ironic.
JKR 1981-2001
History is made of wars, recovering from wars and preparing for the next war.
JJR 1975-

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