Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Slave Story, part 2

Someone wished for my story not to be too similar to John Norman's Gor stories. I hope it will not be, although it owes a lot of its inspiration from those stories. I hope this will view fantasy slavery from a slightly different perspective.


Anyway, here is the second part. Nothing exciting happens yet but it is part of the story.


'Stand up!'

I obeyed him.


He didn't say anything but took my leash and led me away from the market square. Everyone was watching me and I knew that this would be the topic of most conversations for a long period of time. I marched behind him, bound and naked and everyone in the square could see me in my shame and humiliation. I cried and lowered my gaze. I couldn't bear to see them watch me.


My mind couldn't grasp what was happening. I had been enslaved but I couldn't believe it was true. My father had sold me to Firul. But why? Did he hate me or were we poor? I didn't knew we were poor.


It was a long walk of shame for me, through the streets of our town. We left the square and suddenly I was not news any more. Someone looked up and saw me but there was nothing unusual in a slave girl being led through the streets like this. Some of the men looked me over and smiled at what they saw and others were not concerned at all. Some women looked with contempt and others with pity.


It felt slightly easier being unknown and not noticed but I was still crying, I was still in turmoil. At one occasion we passed some older women from my village and they looked at me intensely and pointed and I heard them talking. They would surely report this to the village. I felt even more humiliated then.


At last we came to the pens. It was a big grey building encircled by a high wall and although I had often seen it and even seen the slave girls being marched in and out of it, I had never seen it from the inside. Now I was admitted through a small door and taken across the courtyard to a flanking building. The courtyard was empty except for a long row of sturdy poles set along the wall of the main building. From the poles hung heavy chains and collars. I had heard of how the pens sometimes put slaves up for sale on this courtyard and I assumed the girls then was fastened to the poles for display.


We went into the smaller building and the darkness of the room felt cool against my hot skin. I was told to kneel in front of a pulpit like piece of furniture at one end of the room and I obeyed. I remembered to spread my knees although it made me blush again. In some ways I was more humiliated by kneeling in this room in front of the men from the pen than in the open. I felt more naked and vulnerable here alone with them than in the square.


I knelt there for a long time and the man left with one of the servants leaving the other to keep an eye on me. I shivered. I was scared that the young man would take advantage of the situation and try to touch me or even worse. He didn't. He just sat on a bench looking bored.


For some reason I found this a bit humiliating and in my mind I wondered if there were many far more prettier girls that he thought of as he was guarding me, girls he rather fondled than me. The thought made me feel even more horrible although I was happy he didn't touch me.


At last an old man came in and sat down behind the pulpit. He came together with the man who had taken me from the square. He handed a bunch of papers to the old man who started reading them and taking notes on another scroll. The old man looked kind.

'What have we here, Calissa, the daughter of the blacksmith Cajol from Motilya, sold to master Firul for...' He didn't finish the sentence. It was not customary to tell an enslaved girl her price. The only ones who got to know their value was the ones sold at an auction or those who heard the men bargaining for her.


I froze. I realised that I might be sold at an auction. Everyone from the village would be there and they would see me in my shame and see me sold. My friends would take pity on me but most of the girls and boys would love to see me being sold. And if I brought a low price they would talk about it and say that I was not worth more. My heart started pounding again as I thought about being sold and how slave girls often were sold in the nude or even worse, were stripped in the presence of everyone.

'You are Calissa, aren't you?' he said in his soft voice.

'Yes, master,' I answered.

'Good,' he said, 'take her to pen 13!'


I was taken through a door and marched down a long corridor. I felt lonely and exposed and very scared as I hurried on bare feet behind the guard who lead me through the building.


We passed many doors, some guarded by men with whips in their belts. I shivered at the sight of those men and the thought that I was at their mercy now. I had seen slave girls being whipped and knew how they reacted. I had been young and stupid and enjoyed the sight with my friends although I had been scared and horrified by the brutality. Now I realised that it might happen to me and the thought was unbearable.


We went through doors and gates and down winding stairs and at last we came to the pens. We went through a big door and suddenly the sound of the pens assaulted my ears. I felt the presence of many people although it took a while for me to see where they were. The big room had pillars and aisles and parts of it was sealed off by iron bars. This was the pens. Behind the bars were the slaves. I saw dozens and dozens of women and girls, sitting and lying on the floors of the pens. Only a few of them had the skimpiest of clothes. Most of them were naked. They looked dirty and exhausted but I could see that many of them were beautiful. They were mostly young women, some of them just girls, some as young as ten, maybe. Some of them wore chains and some were bound but most of them were just naked.


My guard handed a note to another guard and then a door made of iron bars was opened and I was led through that door. My leash was removed and my bounds around my hands were cut. Then the door was slammed behind me. I was now confined in the pens.


The other girls looked at me. No one spoke. I shivered as I looked for a place to sit. I found an empty spot by a stone pillar that formed part of the wall and sat down. I crouched and hid my face in my arms and cried. I was a prisoner. I was a slave. I was property.


An hour ago I had been a young, happy girl sitting with her friends at the fountain after having run my errands and now I was naked and locked up in the slave pens. I couldn't understand it. I had been sold by my father to master Firul and now I was property. I had been the daughter of a blacksmith. I had been the daughter of a honourable man, a wealthy man. Now I was nothing, an animal, someone who could be bought and sold. I was owned. I was property. I was young and now my life was destroyed, at least the life I knew. It was gone forever. There is no way back if you once have been enslaved. You can't own anything as a slave. Everything that is yours, your clothes, your things and your body and soul belong to your owner. You are property and property may be given to someone but nothing can be given to you so you can never get your freedom back.





No comments: