Content warnings: no sexual content, but definite d/s.
“These are my private rooms, with the blue carpet.” The Kraken, her master, gestured at the line between the blue tile of the bathroom and the plush floor of the hallway. “No-one but I - and by extension, you - are allowed in here. Within these rooms, you will crawl unless ordered to stand. You will be naked unless ordered clothed, or unless dressing to leave these rooms. And you will not leave these rooms without my permission unless you need to to save my life or your own.”
“Yes, sir,” the girl who had been called Yaminah answered. The orders were not that different than those Ackerley had given her, if more thorough, and with more qualifiers.
It wasn’t even that hard, even though it had been years, to get used to the feeling of crawling, following a set of feet. “You will, within this area, speak only when spoken to. And you will, outside of my private rooms, never convey to others what goes on within this space. Let it be a mystery.”
A little frisson of fear went through her. That order… that meant hiding bad things from people. That meant… it meant pain. Ackerley had only done that a couple times. A couple had been enough.
She didn’t realize she’d stopped, frozen, until he stopped, turned, and looked down at her. Something must have shown in her face, because he knelt down in front of her, taking her chin in his hand again.
“I am not one of those butchers,” he murmured, quiet but fierce. “And I have nothing to hide from my servants or employees. I am not afraid,” he added, a bit amused, “that Luke will come and yell at me, although if you were cy’Luca in your time at Addergoole, he might. But I like the mystery of my chambers to remain the mystery of my chambers. Do you understand?”
She took a breath she didn’t realize she’d been holding. “Yes, sir,” she whispered. “Thank you, sir.”
“That’s a good girl,” he smiled, patting her shoulder before straightening again. “Something you might want to keep in mind, especially over the next couple weeks, as we get to know each other. When I was Keeping Damaris, I was a teenaged kid with something to prove. Doubly so with Speed. And anything that happened with Ackerley, well, I met the little shit before I left. I would, if I were you, remember that two-steps-removed from a young me is not the same thing, by far, as being Kept by me.”
“Yes, sir,” she choked out. Part of her mind suggested her really meant That bullshit that Ackerley pulled is child’s play compared to what I’m going to do with you, while the rest of her understood that he was trying to tell her I’m not going to leave you bruised and bloody. I outgrew that sort of thing. The conflict left her paralyzed, staring at the blue carpet that defined her new prison.
Somewhere a thousand miles above her, her master sighed. Before she could move, apologize, anything, he was scooping her up into his arms and holding her close to him, pressed against the silk of his shirt. “You are mine,” he whispered, “for the next two years, my possession, my responsibility. I would no more hurt you, abuse you, than I would wreck my car or burn down my house. You are safe with me, my Pretty. Safe. Tell me you understand that.”
She shuddered in his arms, a sob she hadn’t know she was holding back coming out in a long, body-shaking keen. “I understand that, my master,” she whispered.
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