Holodeck Hell (part 10)

16Apr19

holo10

Part one here

Tzara awoke with a start. Startled and confused she quickly got to her feet and grabbed at her body to inspect for damage. Looking up she saw how high she had been when she fell and she gasped. Now she remembered the sickening fall, although mercifully not the bone crushing impact. Panting hard she fell to her knees and tried to process what had happened. She had died, in this scenario she had died. She should have woken up back at the start with an opportunity to reset or have been thrown out of the VR suite altogether.

Her mind raced. She had three months of this world and even death would not free her. What if it is longer than three months? The thought made her panic. Even in conventional scenarios there was a small amount of relative time dilation. Only a few moments, but because of the front loaded compression during set-up, the games usually lagged towards the end. Scale that up to account for longer subjective time..? She began to panic.

“Get a hold of yourself,” she said aloud, “You are in the same boat as yesterday.”

“Indeed you are not,” someone spoke. The familiar voice had a razor edge to it and she did not need to turn to know that it was Galen.

“Good afternoon my lord,” she said meekly. She hadn’t done anything wrong had she?

“You are naked,” Galen stated the obvious, “In public,” he added unnecessarily.

Well apart from that, she conceded and cringed. Her hands gathered at her sex and she stood in a half crouch as she turned to face the man.

There were eight riders with Galen, none were smiling and her master was positively glaring at her.

“You left the castle without permission,” he continued, he did not seem the least amused. “To do what?” he looked up at the cliff in astonishment.

“I was…” Tzara began and then realised that in this world even men were unlikely to climb for fun. She swallowed. “I got lost,” she finished lamely.

“I think you lie,” Galen accused her and wheeled his horse in a circle as her drew nearer. “Lady Lucinda said you asked about climbing and the gate guard who saw you out said you were seeking these cliffs.” He looked up again as if try to guess a secret he could not grasp. “Why are you naked out here?”

Tzara hugged herself more tightly and scanned the rocks for her clothes. “I was hoping to swim,” she ventured.

“Lies,” Galen snarled. “There is no pool close by, why would you seek one already disrobed?”

“My Lord, she is a spy,” one of the men suggested.

“She is mad Sir,” said another in a tone that suggested that Tzara’s motives were unimportant.

Ignoring them Galen brought his horse close. “That first day you protested the length of your service. You were more defiant than any woman I have ever…” he threw up his arm in exasperation. “You were running away,” he told her.

“No my lord I…” Tzara protested.

Galen leaned down and without exerting himself scooped her up and deposited her face down across his lap and across the front of the horse’s saddle so that she dangled head down and bottom upwards. “Liar,” he snapped and slapped her exposed bottom hard.

“My lord,” she squealed.

“I will have the truth from you,” Galen hissed and kicked his horse into a trot.

“My lord, my clothes,” Tzara protested

Galen did not listen and breaking into a trot he led the party home.

*

Tzara had been crucified. Not as she had actually first feared with nails, although Galen’s controlled anger suggested he was angry enough to do anything to her. She had been placed face down on a huge wooden cross with a triangular post or peg between her legs. Her hands had been secured with padded straps to the crosspiece and the whole cross had been pulled upright and set into the wall.

The tug on her arms was not as great as she feared and there was a small platform under her feet so that by standing on tip toes she was able steady herself. The jutting post between her legs was the uncomfortable part and she remembered the frame she had had to straddle that first night. This was promising to be a similar experience.

Galen had secured her himself and despite her pleas and apologies he had said nothing to her until she was firmly in place.

“I need to calm down,” he said at last.

“Please my lord I am sorry, I wasn’t running away, truly I wasn’t,” she pleaded.

“I want to be believe that,” he sighed. He already sounded less angry. “But even if that is true… you broke the law and for no reason that anyone can fathom. Have you any idea what the penalty is for absconding? If I defy the rules to save you it will weaken my position.”

Tzara was breathing heavily and she considered his words. ‘Weaken his position’ how? What had she done? Then it occurred to her that he had spoken of saving her.

“My lord,” she said breathlessly, “What will they do to me?”

Galen shook his head and tightened his jaw. “I cannot evade responsibility for this,” he groaned. “If it is found that you were trying to escape a lawful contract then… well then I am required to sentence you to a public flogging and sell your contract to a slaver. You will be exiled as a slave.” His words sounded final.

Tzara gaped and a tear rolled down her cheek. The sharp edge of wood between her legs was already becoming quite pressing.

“Please my lord, I wasn’t running away,” she pleaded.

“Convince me and I might spare you, although god knows it will cost me,” Galen sighed. “You will not like what follows I assure you. In truth it is not me that must be convinced. The Lord Chamberlain is the one you need to persuade and god knows I don’t even know what you think you were doing.”

Tzara’s mind flared. A hundred thoughts tumbled there and she desperate seized at one and then another as she racked her brains for what to say. “Please my lord, then let me explain,” she pleaded.

“Later, think on it first and consider your story well,” Galen warned and then he was gone.

“This is crazy town,” Tzara yelled and then grimaced. Her predicament was getting very uncomfortable and she was beginning to get the point of if, she wryly thought.

*

Tzara had been half hanging and half standing on the cross for an uncomfortably long time. Over and over she had thought about what she could say. The truth would only work if they bought that anyone would be insane enough to climb a rock face without ropes. In reality she knew she never would have done had this been the real world. Not without elaborate and careful preparation. At the moment she had a choice of appearing a liar and therefore guilty or being mad and therefore… she did not follow that train.

“What did you do?” the voice startled her.

“Lucinda, is that you?” Tzara said weakly. She could not turn her head to look down.

“Maria told me, although lord knows what she thought I could do,” Lucinda sighed.

“I wasn’t running, I swear,” Tzara wailed.

Lucinda pursed her lips and looked up at her friend. She had seen much worse restraints; Galen was obviously minded to be merciful. “At least you haven’t been whipped yet,” she observed as her eyes took in her friends bottom.

“Is that good?” Tara didn’t know, she had expected a spanking at least. Then at least she would have known where she was.

“I don’t know,” Lucinda groaned, “I think what you did may be beyond just a good spanking. If it wasn’t I would give you one myself.”

“Galen says your Karl is the one who won’t believe me,” Tzara tried to turn her head a little to look down.

“Believe what? What were you doing?” Lucinda called up.

Tzara took a deep breath. “I was just climbing the rock face, for fun,” she explained, “To look at the view and get a better look at my new home.”

“What?” Lucinda frowned. “You that doesn’t make any sense, don’t you?”

“I am beginning to get that,” Tzara sighed and rolled her eyes.

“Karl won’t buy it,” Lucinda said glumly.

“Can’t you persuade him that I…?” Tzara didn’t know how to finish that question.

“What, that you are stupid girl?” Lucinda finished for her. “You know I might.”

The pressing wood between her legs was really not fun now and Tzara was finding it hard to concentrate. “Please, if I tell you the truth can you please help me put it into words that make sense to Galen and Karl.”

Lucinda looked around and back out of the dungeon. She was torn. “You know if they find me here I will be up on a cross next you and Karl will leather my bottom every day for a month.”

“Then you should go,” Tzara sighed.

“Then when it is nice and sore, he will take a cane to me for good measure,” Lucinda continued her narrative as if to herself.

“Maybe slavery won’t be so bad,” the punished girl sighed.

“Oh that, no it is pretty bad,” Lucinda said matter-of-factly, “So we had better sort this out. Tell me again what you were doing.”

To be continued…

 

 



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