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“C’mon, Liej,” Liz hissed as she strode boldly between the trees. “Father is still out hunting and the servants are asleep. This is our chance to explore!”
Liz’s brother, Elijah, crept cautiously behind her, eyes searching the darkness. “We shouldn’t be out here, Liz. What if father finds us? He’s hunting in these woods, you realize that right?”
Liej was such a scardy cat. “Aww, are you scared, little brother? You could always go back,” Liz sneered. She wasn’t watching Lie as she walked through the dark forest, but she knew he would go rigid and purse his lips trying to control his considerable temper. In her mind’s eye she could see his jaw tighten as he fought to suppress the rage he had inherited from their father. Liz could guess almost word for word what he was about to say.
“I wish you wouldn’t call me that,” Liej said in a carefully controlled voice. “I’m only six hours younger. We’re really the same age. Also, if anything happens to you, Father will have me drawn and quartered.” Liz rolled her eyes. Father was strict, but he would never take such drastic punishment to his only son and heir.
In truth, Liej was only Liz’s half brother. Liz was the daughter of Lord Isiah Goodking of Manswood with his wife, the Lady Annette, while Liej’s mother was one of the maids. Their father had often boasted that he gotten both of their mothers with child on the same night, and they were certainly born on the same day.
Of course, the fact that Liej’s mother was a common maid had no effect whatsoever on his status. As mother had often told her, this was a man’s world, and only one’s father mattered. Nor did it matter that Liz was born first. She got mad just thinking about it. She was way smarter and braver and better than Liej at everything, but just because Liej had an extra little dangly bit between his legs, he stood to inherit everything, including Liz herself if she wasn’t yet married when Father died. Girls were nothing more than property in the man’s world.
“Liz, slow down! It’s dark, you might trip, and if you get hurt I am DEAD!” hissed Liej. Liz realized she had been walking faster than she had intended, but she didn’t care. She always got soooo mad when she thought about how lucky Liej was to be a boy. He didn’t deserve it.
“Ohhhhh I get it,” he said mocklingly behind her. “You’re thinking about how I’m gonna inherit someday and you’re gonna get nothing! Aren’t you over that already?” Liz broke into a run.
As Liz stepped forward, her foot did not encounter the ground as she had expected it to. She pitched forward onto a steep incline, screaming as she rolled down the slope. She was vaguely aware of Liej shouting her name frantically as brambles tore at her dress. A tall shadow loomed in front of her-a tree- and she couldn’t stop her momentum. There was a THUD.
She awoke in darkness, feeling a cold wetness against her arm. Blood? No. She had rolled down a ravine and landed next to a small brook. Liz shakily climbed to her feet. Liej’s concerned shouts rang down from above, getting closer by the second. She should shout back, tell him she was alright. As her mouth opened she froze.
A low, deep, powerful growl. It seemed to resonate with her bones, turning her muscles to jello. Trembling uncontrollably, she managed to turn her head to gaze into the glowing yellow eyes of the monstrous wolf as it slowly walked toward her, fangs barred. It was huge; twice as big as any dog she had ever seen. It’s fangs glimmered in the moonlight as the beast slowly advanced on Liz. It’s terrible yellow eyes burned with hunger. Hunger for Liz’s flesh.
Liz realized that this was probably the very wolf that her father had gone out to hunt that afternoon. Suddenly this entire excursion into the woods seemed so stupid. Father is out hunting a wolf in the woods, so let’s go into INTO the woods where both father and the wolf are. Great idea, Liz! Absolutely brilliant. Funny the things you realize right when you’re about to die. The wolf prepared to leap.
But then he was there, between her and the wolf. Liej stood in the crouched stance he had learned from his sword lessons, although all he held was a small stick. “Liz, are you hurt? Can you run?” She could hear the fear in his voice, but his hand remained steady as he held out that flimsy stick at the wolf. “Liz, you need to run, right now.”
She managed to stumble a few feet before she collapsed against a tree. She scrambled behind it, hiding, though she knew it would do no good to hide from a wolf. She couldn’t run. She was too scared.
The wolf tried to circle around Liej, perhaps sensing that Liz was easier prey, but Liej moved quickly, keeping himself between it and her. The beast snarled in frustration, and Liej snarled right back. He didn’t seem afraid anymore. How could he not be afraid?
“You can’t have her,” Liej growled to the wolf. “She’s mine.” He looked… different, somehow. For a moment, Liz thought she was looking at a grown bahis firmaları man rather than a twelve year old boy.
The wolf leapt at Liej. Liz watched horrified and screaming as it’s jaw snapped shut around his shoulder. She fell to her knees, unable to watch as Liej screamed in pain and the wolf snarled as it tried to tear him apart.
She thought she heard shouts and hoof beats in the distance before everything went black.
Miss Elizabeth Goodking gasped, panting heavily as she took in the darkness of the inside of her carriage. She had not dreamed of that night with the wolf in over a year. In a way, it was fitting that she would have that dream tonight, because by midmorning she would be home. She had not been back in almost four years.
Only one week past she had graduated with honors from the Servewell Higher Education Institute for Young Women. The very next day she had received a terse letter from her brother, Elijah.
“Father is in ill health. He won’t make it. There isn’t much time. Come home.”
Elizabeth hired a carriage straightaway. If she hurried home, she might just make it in time to watch her father die. That thought filled her with mixed feelings. After her mother’s death two years ago, Father and Elijah were the only family Elizabeth had left. The Lord Isiah Goodking of Manswood had never been a kind man, but he did care for his children in a sort of rough, callous way. Elizabeth had not seen him since she left for the institute four years ago.
Most young ladies of Elizabeth’s status were married soon after their eighteenth birthday. Her father had pressured her to seek marriage, but he had the decency not to force her outright. Many fathers would not be so lenient, as he had often reminded her. After Elijah had joined the army she had asked her father for permission to attend the Servewell Institute, the greatest educational institution for women in the country, and he had belatedly agreed, provided that she find a groom and get married within a month after her graduation. She had lied to her father, telling him that she had met a man worthy of her affections in order to stall even further. Her father hadn’t really understood the reason why she had refused to get married. He thought it was her independent spirit. Elijah probably thought the same thing.
She stretched and yawned, sliding open the window of her carriage as it rolled down the road toward home. The sun was just beginning to rise and she would not reach the end of her journey for hours yet. She picked up the book she had been reading last night, Franklyn Rulercock’s classic On the Human Female. As a woman, Elizabeth found it fascinating to read about women from the perspective of a man, and Rulercock’s work was widely acclaimed. She flipped to the chapter titled “Controlling Rebellious Females”.
“Of all the creatures of the Earth that Man rules over (as is His right) none have greater capacity for resistance to His will as the woman. This is because the woman is of His own species and possesses all of His cunning. It is unwise to underestimate the intelligence of the human female. A wise Man must not assume that He is cleverer than His mate.”
Well, he got that part right. She kept reading.
“That said, the human female can be properly bent to the will of Man assuming the proper methodology is employed. Many women will submit willingly to the natural order without protest. Some, however, are difficult, and will bite the hand that rules them. These females resent the natural order, and will resist the will of their owners out of bitterness, ultimately bringing misery upon themselves as well. In order to control such women, a binding ritual is highly recommended. We will explore the binding ritual in detail in chapter four, but in short, women can be bound to follow a Man’s command. All that is needed is a sample of each of the female’s four primary fluids, a sample of one’s own essence, and a medium to absorb them, such as a towel or cloth.
“But I must stress that the binding ritual is limited in nature. It will bind the woman to carry out the commands of the Man, but remember that woman is a crafty creature. If it pleases her, she can twist Man’s words to thwart their purpose. In this way, she can spite Him, bringing Him misery. For difficult females, I recommend one of two courses of action in addition to a binding ritual.
“First, it is possible to rule over a woman with pain and fear. With adequate use of sufficiently harsh punishment for increasingly minor infractions, Man can put woman in a state of terror, which, combined with the binding ritual, completely precludes her ability to resist His will. This approach has a few disadvantages. It requires an extremely firm hand, and Men who are not very sadistic may have trouble inflicting such pain upon their mates. Additionally, if a Man rules over a woman with pain and fear, she will likely come to hate him, kaçak iddaa and although she will be unable to resist His will, neither will she be truly dedicated to His well being and His pleasure. It is unlikely that this course will result in long term happiness for Man or for woman.
“The second and far more pleasant way to control a rebellious female is with the judicious application of sexual pleasure. Human females, like human males, are sexual creatures. A woman will have a difficult time resisting the will of a Man who is her only source of frequent, powerful orgasms. In order to control a woman with sexual pleasure it must be applied in such a way as to reward her obedience, then it can be withheld from her as punishment if need be. However, the ability to give a woman sexual pleasure consistently requires a great deal of knowledge and skill.”
The next few pages were filled with different methods of making women cum. Some of them were very interesting indeed. Elizabeth read through them eagerly. The descriptions of the various methods were scholarly and clinical, lacking any emotional charge. After all, this book was written for men as an instruction manual, not for women’s erotic amusement. Even so, Elizabeth found her face heating as she read a passage describing a method in which a woman’s anus was stimulated with a foreign object during sexual intercourse. Elizabeth had never had sex before, but that didn’t mean she was unfamiliar with the theory. There had been entire courses at the institute focused on learning to please men, and even before that, Father hadn’t exactly shy when he used Elizabeth’s mother or any of the maids who stuck his fancy.
Rulercock’s book entertained her adequately over the next few hours, and the next time she glanced out the window the carriage was rolling through the grounds of Manswood manor. As she passed the tall, weathered obelisk of wood known as the whipping stump, memories whirled through her mind, from a time when she was ten years old.
*CRACK!* Liej grunted in pain as the cane hit his back, arms struggling against his restraints. It was no use, he was chained to the whipping post, a tall stump that had been used to punish disobedient servants and children for generations. The post was solid as ever. Father drew back his arm for another blow.
Liz giggled. Maybe this would teach Liej not to be such a stupid head. It probably wouldn’t. Her half brother was bad to the core, since he was born of one of the maids rather than her own noble mother. Liz had knocked over a pot of soup in the kitchens while father was away, and Liej hadn’t stopped her, so now father was whipping him for his inability to keep his sister in line. The fact that she was responsible for the whole incident did not make Liz feel bad in the slightest. Liej always deserved a whipping as far as Liz was concerned.
Liej raised his head, looking directly at Liz. Hate burned in his eyes as the cane fell on his back with another loud crack.
Beside Liz stood her mother, the Lady Annette Goodking. “This is all my fault,” said Mother. She sounded horrified. That was odd, Liz had thought that Mother hated Liej as much as Liz did.
Liz tugged at her skirt. “What’s wrong, Mother? Liej is just getting whipped again, that happens all the time.”
“This time is different, dear. I know you tipped over that pot of soup on purpose. You KNEW that would get Elijah in trouble. Oh, what have I done…” Liz didn’t see why she was so upset. But then, Mother crouched down and took her by the shoulders. “Listen well my daughter. Your mother is a selfish, petty, jealous woman. She hated that your father took pleasure from another, hated that he gave his child to another to bear. I couldn’t hate your father because I love him so much. So instead I hated the child of that other woman. Elizabeth, you’ve watched how I treated Elijah, and you’ve learned my contempt. That’s why you did this, isn’t it?”
“It’s just a little whipping,” Liz muttered. “Liej is going to inherit the whole mansion some day, and I’m going to get nothing. He can take a few hits, can’t he?”
“Look at him,” ordered Mother. She looked. Liej’s eyes burned with rage as they met hers. His face contorted with pain as the cane hit his back with another loud crack, but his gaze never wavered. “He doesn’t care about inheritances, Elizabeth. All he can feel is pain, pain for someone else’s sin. He HATES you. Listen to me, my only daughter. Brothers are NOT supposed to hate their sisters, not like this. We are women in a Man’s World, remember that. The affection of men, especially brothers and fathers is the only thing that preserves us. Promise me you’ll get along with Liej from now on.”
“But, he’s so stupid-“
As Liz watched Father bring his cane down with a loud crack against Liej’s back, she actually felt kind of bad. “I promise,” she whispered.
That night Liz slipped out kaçak bahis of bed and crept slowly down the hall to Liej’s room. She knocked softly. Liej opened the door a moment later and peered out at her. She could tell by the puffiness around his eyes that he had been crying.
“What do you want, Liz?” he said, coldly.
“Come with me for a bit,” she replied.
“Why, so you can get me whipped again?”
“Just come, stupid.”
Liej grumbled, but he followed her as she sneaked out of the mansion through the servant’s quarters. She broke off a stick from a small tree as she led Liej through the cold night air back to the whipping post. When she arrived she turned on her heal to face him. “Liej,” she said, “Do you hate me?”
“Yes,” he replied without hesitation.
She dropped the stick on the ground. It wasn’t quite as thick as Father’s cane, but it would have to do. She turned around and wrapped her arms around the whipping post. “Hit me until you don’t hate me anymore.”
“I bet you think I won’t really do it,” he said picking up the stick.
“I know you will, stupid,” said Liz, bracing herself as she heard the stick whistle through the air. Pain exploded in her back, and she screamed at the top of her lungs. She knew it was going to hurt, but this was way, way worse than she thought! How had Liej taken this over and over without crying out? She sank down to her knees and curled up in a ball as she felt hot tears pour down her cheeks.
“Oh geez! Oh god, Liz, I’m so sorry.” Liz felt Liej’s arms gently rap around her, the heat of his chest against her back warding off the cold night air. “I won’t hit you again. Please don’t cry?”
“Do you still hate me?” she sniffled.
“Good.” Liz dried her tears on Liej’s arm. His arms felt good around her. She felt… warm.
For the next two years, Liz and Liej were just like a normal brother and a normal sister. They played together, and told each other stories, and argued and fought. Liz still got Liej in trouble a lot, but never on purpose. Liej was still a stupid head, but Liz liked him anyway, and Liej liked her too, even if he wouldn’t admit it.
Elizabeth shook herself out of her daydream as the carriage halted before the Manor’s front door. Those days were just a memory now. Elijah was different ever since the night with the wolf, a man rather than a boy. No, the change had started even before that, on their twelfth birthday.
Elizabeth stepped out of the carriage. It felt good to stretch her legs after such a long ride. Joseph, the butler, bowed as she walked up the steps, and then pushed open the tall manor doors. Joseph had been old even when Elizabeth had been a child, but he still stood as straight as ever. “Miss Elizabeth, welcome home. Lord Elijah wishes to see you immediately in his study,” he said in his crisp, precise voice. Lord Elijah in his study? It seemed Elizabeth hadn’t made it in time.
“I have been riding through the night. Inform my brother that I will see him after I have a chance to freshen up.”
“Lord Elijah said immediately, Miss. He was very specific on that point.”
Elizabeth sighed. “Very well.” She climbed to the second story and turned to the left, toward the study. This first meeting with her brother after four years apart would be crucial for her future. Either she would get everything she ever wanted or she would wind up married to some man she barely knew, forever exiled from her home. The legal reality was that she was completely at his mercy, and therefore his first impression of her would be of utmost importance. She wished she at least had time to touch up her make-up and brush her hair.
She paused before the study door. This was the site of another turning point, ten years ago, on their twelfth birthday. Looking back, she knew it was the day her brother’s hunger had awakened.
Liz rounded the corner to see her mother standing just outside Father’s study. She looked ill. “Mother,” Liz said, concerned. “Are you alright? Why has father summoned us to his study?”
Mother shook her head as if to clear it. “I’m fine, dear. Your father wants to see you. Both of you,” she added as Liej rounded the corner behind Liz. Liej looked to the side awkwardly. He was still uncomfortable around the Lady Anette, Liz’s mother, though Lady Annette had stopped treating him with contempt nearly two years ago. “It’s your twelfth birthday,” Mother continued.
“Oh. Is he going to give us a present?” Liz asked hopefully.
“Not exactly.” Mother looked even sicker than before. “Your Father has decided that you should both learn the ways of the world. Just… go inside.”
Liej shrugged and pushed past Liz, opening the door and stepping into Father’s study. Liz followed behind, and nearly bumped into Liej’s back as he froze. Liz looked past him into the room. Their father, Lord Isiah Goodking, sat behind his imposing mahogany desk, stroking his short-cropped beard with his hand. Beside him stood a dark haired woman, completely nude. She kept her head bowed and eyes lowered.
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