For You I Suffer
"I am ready, my lord."
I could feel Quatre's intent stare as though he was trying to delve into my head and fathom my thoughts. I am sure he had guessed by then that I knew with whom I was to pass the evening. Perhaps he wondered at my seeming calmness. In truth I was anything but composed but I projected the false image with all my might. After a long moment, he sighed and reached to pick up the loose end my chain.
"Very well, then."
I rose to my feet as Quatre bid Helen a good night. Gentle fingers against my chin prompted me to lift my gaze. I met her kind regard reluctantly. I did not need sympathy this night. Rather, I desperately needed to pretend I was naught but the unfeeling object Heero so obviously thought me to be. I bowed my head once more, gently but firmly rejecting her compassion. She harrumphed as though offended, but I could discern the concern in her tone. She leaned forward to press her lips to my forehead before nodding to Quatre and disappearing into the endless corridors of Windshire. I felt a burning behind my eyes but ruthlessly suppressed the threatening tears.
Quatre tugged at my tether pulling me forward. I followed silently, shivering only slightly as my feet left the soft carpet of the baron's chamber and landed on cold stone. A few steps beyond the entrance, I paused and turned to look behind me as I heard the guards shutting the doors. I do not know what I hoped to find: my master standing there looking after me with longing, begging me silently not to go? Maybe he would reach out a beckoning hand and I would answer by running to him, holding him, and beseeching that he never again let me go.
It was a sweet fantasy, but like all of my dreams of late, quickly banished. The doorway was empty and I turned away as the soft thud of the closing door resounded inordinately loud in my ears.
I barely recall the path we took as Quatre led me. If I had been sensible of the journey, I might have noticed that he was taking me to an unfamiliar quarter of the castle. Red and gold draperies graced the walls, proclaiming the identity of the residents in the proximate apartments. Instead of appreciating the beauty of the rich fabric, which had been imported from Slaburry at the baron's expense, I was cognizant only of the tension that was twisting my gut into a knot of nerves.
From the bottom of my heart I wished to be anywhere else but where I was. I could not know the full extent of what lay in store for me that night. But I remembered clearly the contemptuous smirk narrowing the ambassador's ginger-colored eyes as he lorded his position and power over my baron. For that insult alone I would have hated him, but the disgust I had felt on those few instances we had met was enough to convince me that this would be a night I would oft pray to forget.
I forced myself to pay attention when I nearly bumped into Quatre as his steps abruptly slowed. We came to a halt before a door bracketed by guards dressed smartly in Slaburry livery. A certain phlegmatic numbness was creeping over me as I set myself to not care what might occur over the next few hours. I knew I would be taken and it would not be pleasant, but nothing would happen that I had not already experienced. At least that was my thought at the time. Later I would strongly question my inexcusable penchant for assumption.
Before Quatre could call to them, the guards were reaching to open the door. At first I thought they were simply demonstrating their awareness of our purpose in being there, but it seemed they were, in fact, reacting to some summons from within. The portals opened to reveal a personage I had desired never to see again: Lady Dorothy. Her long, blond hair swung subtly against her back as she passed through the entryway, so thick and voluminous it barely registered her movements. She slowed at the sight of us, her eyes widening in pleased surprise.
"My lord Quatre, I had heard you were bringing Duo here tonight, but I had not thought to be lucky enough to actually intercept you." She graced us with a tutored curtsey, which was met with alacrity by my suddenly blushing trainer.
"M-my lady," he stammered, "seeing you is a pleasure as always." I wondered at her presence in the ambassador's room, but I knew any answers from Quatre would be long in coming. Remembering my previous encounter with her, I could see nothing beyond her physical appearance to excite his unconcealed interest. That hateful blue gaze, lighter than Lord Zechs's and far colder, turned toward me and I gratefully took refuge in the submissive demeanor expected of me. Although I avoided her regard by training my gaze toward the flagstones beneath my feet, I still felt an icy chill as she looked me over.
"Ah, Duo. Might I attribute your appearance to the fond memory of that day we spent together? You are as lovely as ever." From beneath my lashes I saw a deceptively delicate hand reach toward me. Her fingers brushed over the ruby-encrusted gold clipped to my ears and traced over the artful coils of my hair. The hem of her dress, done in heavy burgundy satin and trimmed with ecru ribbon, brushed against my legs as she closed the distance between us. I closed my eyes as she leaned nearer, her breath blowing softly over my ear.
"But surely we did you a better service. Tell me, was the baron appreciative of our handiwork?" She laughed at my gasp, the memory of that night flooding my mind with heated images: Heero holding me as I was fitted with a new, larger dildo, his gaze burning in its intensity as he watched me bring myself to release with my own hand. The visions instantly erased my complacency and stoke a fire in my belly. My nipples throbbed and my cock stirred from the quiescence that had defeated even the gold ring surrounding me. I cursed her as she moved away, taking my hard-won apathy with her.
I refused to open my eyes or in any way acknowledge her as Quatre bid her a good night. The swishing fabric of her skirts against the stones announced her departure, but I still did not look as I felt a tug at my collar urge me forward. Soft carpet once again cushioned my feet and I knew that we had entered the ambassador's residence proper. Feeling Quatre come to a stop before me, I dropped to my knees without a cue.
At that moment I could not say whether my refusal to open my eyes was in reaction to Dorothy's teasing or my reluctance to admit that final acceptance of my fate. But when Quatre's overly formal greeting - wishing our host welcome in the name of the Baron of Calderash - was answered with a deep, mocking tone, I could now longer feign ignorance.
"So, he has finally deigned to give me his whore for the night. I am ever so grateful." Only Ambassador Treize Kushrenada would dare and I knew that if I looked up I would once again see that cocky smirk that seemed so at home on his viciously handsome face.
Quatre gasped at the insult and he curled his fist as though prepared to answer the show of disrespect by physical means. But I merely bowed my head and answered with all pretense of respect I could muster.
"I am at your service, my lord." Quatre glanced at me in surprise, at my response or at my speaking at all I was not sure. But I refused to meet his gaze. Let the ambassador think what he would of me. How could he be refuted when the evidence of the baron's opinion of me sat kneeling at his feet?
"Humph, I am glad to see you are so willing, Duo. That will make this a most pleasant evening, I am sure."
"Ambassador, please do not mistake the baron's generosity for more than it is," Quatre insisted.
"On the contrary, my good sir, I assure you. I am quite cognizant of the exquisite gift the baron has seen fit to bestow on me." His bow, though elegant, was a base parody of the respect the gesture was meant to show. Quatre's pale cheeks flushed as his ire grew. But his anger was equal parts frustration, for he knew there was nothing he could do but to thwart the ambassador's triumph. He took a deep breath and returned Treize genuflection with a stiff nod.
"Then I bid you a good night." Quatre turned to exit but as he walked past me, he paused to rest his hand against my cheek. He did not speak but his sweet smile did somewhat ease the tension tightening my shoulders. In the next moment, however, he was gone and I was alone with the only man I had ever felt reason to hate. My skin registered his overt admiration as an oily film, coating my entire body with sleaze and scum. The cloying scent of his cologne, though inoffensive in essence, caused my throat to close. I tried to turn my head away as he stepped closer, but I was soon apprised of the folly of that action.
"Now then, my pet," he mumbled, his tone a travesty of affection, "there is no reason to be shy." His hand caught my head, his fingers harsh against my skull as he obliterated Helen's careful work. I grimaced barely able to suppress a whimper as his grip tightened painfully in my hair. He pulled by head back until I had no choice but to look him in the eye. His ginger-brown gaze gleamed with a dark light I could not name, but it filled me with trepidation.
Treize's other hand had not been idle. He had already freed himself and was stroking his engorged member. He was not as impressive in size as Lord Zechs nor, in truth, did he compare equally to my master. Still as those two were shining examples of male magnificence, the ambassador had no need to feel ashamed of his proportions. And it seemed that he grew larger at every second as he examined the increasing discomfort and apprehension I could not conceal.
"Yes, that is what I like to see," he hissed. The pressure of his grip suddenly eased, and my head dipped forward to relieve the ache in my neck. My breath had quickened and I tried forcibly to slow it. I swore that I would reveal nothing else of my anxiety to this odious man. Let him think me an emotionless doll. Perhaps he would then become bored with me and would oblige me by ending this assignation all the sooner. I clenched my teeth as his large hand slid slowly over my cheek in a light caress before coming to rest beneath my chin.
"Come along," he said, a gentle nudge bringing me to my feet. "The couch should provide us with more comfortable accommodations." He led me to the overstuffed piece upholstered in muted shades of velvety bronze with a ostensibly solicitous hand upon my lower back. The fabric felt good beneath my bare skin but I resisted the urge to relax into the inviting softness, sensing that I would need to keep my wits about me. Of course, in the next instant that resolve was threatened as Treize pushed a large goblet into my hand. The smell of wine wafted strongly to my nose.
"This is from the vineyards of Luftkrieg, the most prestigious winery in my country. Indeed, it was quite a coup for your Minister of Trade to get it included in our treaty." He chuckled and took a hearty swig from his own equally large cup taking a moment to savor the liquid before swallowing. I tried not to let my eyes linger over the undulations of his strong throat as the wine slid down his gullet.
"Ummm," he rumbled, "perfect as always." He loosened the ties of his shirt allowing it to gape open as sat beside me. He glanced over as I shifted away from him. "Do you not drink?" he asked as he observed my unsampled portion, ignoring my tacit slight and leaning back against the couch, completely at ease.
"I do, my lord," I replied. I figured I should at least take a sip lest my hesitance turn into an unforgivable affront. I raised the goblet to my mouth, letting the fragrant liquid touch my lips and the tip of my tongue. A woodsy tang burst across my senses, the taste aided by the aroma filling my nose. My lips began to tingle with a pleasantly subtle burn as my untrained taste buds struggled to quantify the myriad flavors. The draught would most likely qualify as dry in character - suitable for a man's palette - but there was also a sweetness that I was sure ladies would appreciate. It was smoky but the hint of fruit was unmistakable. In the end, all I could conclude was that the wine was clearly worthy of its fame.
"It is delicious, my lord," I admitted. Treize chuckled, draining his own portion and reaching for the decanter he had placed at his feet. He poured another for himself and used his cup to gesture toward mine.
"Then drink up! I guarantee you will never see its like from Calderash's paltry vineyards." I flushed at the aspersion though it was not directed at me personally. I had never grown grapes myself but as a citizen of Calderash I could not help but take exception to the derision. I covered my discomfort my taking a healthy swallow. If I had remembered that it had been hours since my last meal, I might have been more circumspect. As it was, the wine went directly from my stomach to my head, the speed of its effect aided by my lack of food and stressed nerves. Heat suffused me, warming me much faster than the fire roaring in the nearby hearth. Tension bled from my muscles as caution abandoned me and regrettably loosened my tongue.
"Why was Lady Dorothy visiting you before?" I asked, forgetting that I had vowed not to engage Treize in any unnecessary conversation. I wanted the evening done with as expeditiously as possible, yet the alcohol bid me reveal my curiosity.
"Ah, Dorothy," he chuckled. "That is simple enough; she is my cousin."
"Cousin?" I parroted.
"Yes, the daughter of my father's close cousin," he explained matter-of-factly, seemingly unconcerned that his cock was still exposed to my view as he lounged beside me. "She has been wont to hang about me as my shadow since she was old enough to walk. Naturally she would visit me while I am in the country." I pondered their relationship through the fog invading my mind, but I could not figure out why Dorothy was in Calderash.
"So why does she reside in Windshire?"
"Umm," he hummed as he took a more judicious sip from his goblet. "My father's cousin - a woman I should have mentioned - took a nobleman of your country as her second husband following the death of Dorothy's father. So, of course, she moved here with her daughter." I mulled that over as I took yet another immoderate swig. Though wine had never been my beverage of choice, I was really enjoying the excellent Slaburry vintage. Trieze's smirk broadened as he watched me become increasingly inebriated.
"Now it is my turn to ask you a question, Duo." I tried to focus on him despite my dizziness. My disquiet penetrated the haze and bid me answer with caution, but I had drained my cup and the ambassador was quick to fill it. I imbibed with greater imprudence, appreciating the wine's alleviating effect on my nervousness, as he spoke.
"Tell me, my pet, why would a man as beautiful as you allow himself to become nothing more than a common harlot?"
My body, made clumsy by my indulgence, was unequal to the demand I suddenly placed on it. I stiffened in indignation and swung out my hand, intending to slap him. But my muscles had become languid and Treize, unaffected by the wine he had consumed, easily caught my arm as it neared his face.
"How dare you!" I slurred. I sought to defend Heero's honor, knowing that the slight was really aimed at him. "The honor the baron has bestowed on me is im...immes...."
"Immeasurable is it?" Treize completed for me, amused at my inability to form more than the most simple of words. "So then you are glad that he sells you to the highest bidder?" His fingers reached forward to seize one of my clamps. I shied away as he tugged on it, resenting the fire the sensation ignited in my loins.
"He does not...."
"No?" he interjected, pulling more firmly at my nipple clamp and winning a moan despite my resentment. "I would bet you spent last night with the inimitable Lord Zechs. He was instrumental in winning the inclusion of this wine you have been enjoying. Did you please him, Duo? Were you worth even a glass of this exquisite vintage?"
"Stop it!" I exclaimed, my cry turning into a groan as he took hold of my turgid cock. He leaned closer, his breath hot against my neck though his lips proved hotter. I pushed at his chest but my efforts were feeble at best and did not dissuade him in the least.
"I have been watching you ever since my arrival. We do not employ such servants in Slaburry, so at first I merely found the custom intriguing. But I must say, Duo, seeing you every day walking around in naught but your skin, bound and tethered like a beast, succumbing even to commoners like a cat in heat...."
I realized then that he had seen me that day in the village at the height of my shame. He nibbled softly at my neck, one hand supporting my back and he leaned over me, his other hand never relenting in his manipulation of my aching member. I could not help but respond to his indubitable skill and how I hated myself for it. I did not want to enjoy this. I should not! This man had insulted everything I held dear from my country to my master. He was odious and vile and he was driving me insane with desire.
"Surely you have been well-trained," he whispered and I could not deny the truth of it. His tongue lashed fire against my neck and my breath caught in my throat. I could feel his hardness press against my thigh as it pushed impatiently through the opening of his breeches. "And surely I have done much to earn you for the night. Without me, your pathetic little Calderash would languish due to this drought. Your baron knows this. He knows quite well what he owes me, the very life of his subjects."
He moved downward, tracing his lips over my chest and latching onto one of the swollen nubs held by a golden clamp. My head fell backward as my lashes fluttered, the insistent sucking of his mouth fouling my struggle to keep my thoughts in working order. My hands curled against his shoulders as the sensation shot from my chest to my toes, though I would argue to the death that I was insistently trying to push him away.
"And so, my pet, for tonight you are mine. You will pleasure me as I wish and you will pay your baron's debt handsomely, or else I might be forced to rethink our little trade agreement."
I knew this to be a lie for the treaty had been signed, witnessed, and sealed. No mere whim of the ambassador could undo it now. But I was undone by drink and lust and he hit at the heart of my worries that my actions would somehow reflect badly on my master.
"No," I breathed, my heart pounding painfully against my ribs. "I promise I will do whatever you ask of me. But," I added, some small spark of defiance finding its way through the fog attacking my senses, "what I do this night, I do for my master."
Perhaps I was betraying myself, but I was determined that he knew why I was submitting to him. It had nothing to do with his forceful presence or his hand upon my throbbing cock. It was not the feel of his lips upon my skin or my shameful desire to be filled. There was only one man that I loved and by keeping him in my mind and in my heart, I could face this night as nothing more than an unpleasant task, a mere moment in time, fleeting in its importance.
"For his sake, I will endure anything." My declaration was met with silence. But deep in the ambassador's gaze, a flame burned bright with unspeakable desires and for the first time in my life, I knew true fear.
"No, Duo. I swear for this night, you will think of no one but me," he growled. His hands reached up to yank away my clamps and as the pain blossomed relentlessly my scream was muffled by a devouring kiss.