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The embassy took place, as arranged, near dusk on a wide causeway on the cyclopean walls of the city whose name means “Perennial and Unconquered”. Through the heat haze of its encircling fire pits the vast camp of the Horse Clans darkened the desert like an oily sea, imbuing the warm air with the fetor of its cooking fires, the sweat and excrement of innumerable men and horses.
The court of the Obsidian Queen was arrayed on the walls to discuss terms with its prospective conquerors. As the ambassador of the Clans walked between the brilliantly dressed and perfumed courtiers – scholars, magnates, courtesans and generals – he could not repress a feeling of superiority. He considered all city dwellers to be decadent and soft. Despite the impressive defences that had surely earned the city its name, it would entail a modest expenditure of brave warriors to ford its fire pits and scale its walls. There would follow a night of unrestrained rapine and slaughter. Then the iron order of the Khan of the horse clans would be imposed.
As he proceeded towards the black throne, he gazed on the women of the court with savage prurience. The aristocratic women of the city often went semi-naked; their jewelled bodies covered only in veils or dresses of translucent fabric. It is even said that they were allowed to select their sexual partners and were as educated and valued as its menfolk. The Iron Order would naturally put a stop to such aberrations. The women of the “perennial” city would be taught modesty and humility. Their bodies would be henceforth under the proprietorship of the men of the Khan, to be displayed, in private, at their behest. As he gazed into the haughty eyes of a voluptuous female astronomer, cradling an astrolabe in her soft hands, we wondered, casually, whether she would make a docile and productive mate.
The ambassador, flanked by his two bodyguards, now stood before the black throne upon which the Obsidian Queen awaited behind the human screen of her five female attendants. The attendants were dressed lightly in the manner of the women of the court, their lithe bodies visible under copper veils. The ambassador felt his penis distend and harden under his leather breaches as he studied their disciplined bodies. And they stared back, evaluating him in turn; eyes as calculating as eagles. But his gaze was soon drawn to the figure of the Queen, slouching on her high, dark throne. She was dressed in a black silk gown that opened around her athletic body leaving her breasts and sex visible. The gown seemed to merge into the darkness of the throne. It was gathered at her waste with a thin golden cord, tucked into which was a short ceremonial blade. While he feasted his eyes on her body, the ambassador reflected that this was the only weapon he had seen in the court since arriving in the city. These people would be easy.
The negotiations began. The centremost of the ladies in waiting stepped forward and addressed him in the language of his people, her sentences perfectly accented and constructed: “Tell us your terms, O emissary of the Khan so that that our lady can consider them. You will hear her answer soon”
The ambassador relayed the terms. They were just and, besides, had greatly eased the expansion of the Khanate. Unconditional surrender would earn the mercy of the Khan. The city known as “Perennial and Unconquered” would become one with the Iron Order, with the Queen ruling at the pleasure of an appointed Satrap (traditionally, the representative who had successfully obtained the surrender of the city). Failure to agree would lead to the death or enslavement of many of its inhabitants, and a less flexible dispensation for the rest.
His translator expressed her comprehension with a brisk nod. As she walked with pantherine grace towards the throne, he noted that the Obsidian Queen was studying him oddly. Her regard was strange; her heavy lidded eyes and parted lips expressing deep, open sexual longing that he had never discerned in the subjugated women of the Horse Clans. He noticed that the fingers of one hand were fondling her shaven vulva and lower belly. The ambassador wondered at the impropriety of this, but the courtiers did not give it a second glance. In any case, this did nothing to still the mad fire that was building in his loins. He now hoped that the negotiations would fail. He wanted to rape this Queen with her city burning around her…
He received his answer quickly from the semi-nude translator. The Queen would agree to his terms in return for a minor favour. On hearing what would be required of him, the ambassador laughed out loud and began to loosen his leather belt, allowing the all-conquering member to unfurl before the assembly.
The Queen stepped down from her throne and approached him, naked apart from the thin belt and glinting knife. Her black hair cascaded around her pale shoulders and the erect nipples on her full breasts were shadowed in the flickering torchlight. She crushed her body against the ambassador, inhaling the trail stink of his leathers as if they were a perfume. As she kissed her would-be master she expertly tucked his stiff cock into her. He grabbed her hair from behind and pulled her violently to the granite paving. Then he fucked her before the Obsidian Throne while the courtiers and attendants looked on. His pleasure was building as he pounded her faster. Noting that she seemed to be enjoying his rough treatment, he dug his powerful fingers into her, bruising her back and neck.
But something was indefinably wrong here. Through the haze of his approaching orgasm, he saw that she was smiling, with that same distant need that he had observed earlier, as if lost in some reverie in which he had no place. And then he felt it. A sharp, blinding agony as her knife severed his penis from its base. He shouted, falling back from her, screaming invective and, some would attest, the name of his mother and favourite horse. The bodyguards attempted to come to his aid, but they had been expertly disarmed by a motley crew of courtiers, including the smiling, semi-naked astronomer he had appraised earlier.
Even in his agony and shame, the castrated ambassador was still drawn to the figure of the Queen. She was lying on the pavings of the causeway, legs apart, pleasuring herself with his bloodied member in one hand and with the knife in the other. She teased herself to repeated heights of pleasure with his severed penis, her legs and belly covered in the lubricating wash of his blood. She also pressed the tip of the blade, experimentally against her belly and breasts, and he thought, ruefully, that this seemed to give her even greater joy.
Then she made the first incision, slicing through her left nipple, making a warm rivulet of blood over her breast as she arched in ecstasy. Another self-wounding followed, then another. She made a shallow stab in her left side, then cut both her thighs, adding her own blood to his. With each incision her pleasure mounted until her body shook in an orgasm fuelled by her pain and inexhaustible desire. At this point his prick lay forgotten on a flagstone like a dead rat.
Finally, her black need mounted to its climax and the Obsidian Queen buried her knife into her lower belly, twisting it to cause the maximum pleasure and damage. She lay there dying in her own carnage, shuddering in her congealing blood robe.
As his consciousness faded from blood loss, the ambassador thought he saw the female attendants, who had gazed upon this scene with their habitual lack of expression walk towards the edge of the wall, casting themselves unhesitatingly into the flames of the City’s fire pit. That was the last he saw before the blackness took him.
On the following morning a new Obsidian Queen was picked from the court by the arcane but reliable process followed for thousands of years. By then the army of the Khan was gone. It had melted into the desert upon discovering the nature of the city they had, absurdly, hoped to make their own. It is said that the army of the Horse Clans never recovered from this encounter; that it fell apart in the desert, riven by the political forces that destroy all demoralized military expeditions. It is also said that a single warrior remained in their stead, dying from blood loss and dehydration as he observed the coronation on the city walls.
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My Dark One awaits me in a long windowless room lined with red quilted leather; regal in a black dress that flows over Her supple body like smoke. A galaxy of instruments gleams in the light of black funerary candles. I approach, pausing by the long surgical table at the room's centre. I stroke its cool metal surface with my left hand, and wait.
She gazes into a tall oval mirror of black speculum, watching me emerge from its depths like an uncomfortable memory.
I tell Her that I have come for the last time.
I use the proper form of words for the binding.
My offer is irrevocable.
As she turns, I feel warmth imbuing me; my skin tingles. Below Her vulpine mask, sharpened teeth, a dawning smile. A predatory shiver running in waves through Her powerful body.
At that moment, I feel a compulsion to be entirely naked in Her presence. My skin burns with a sensitivity and grace I can only feel here. My clothes drop to the floor. The soft skin below my ribs, the tender flesh of my arms, my nipples drip sweetness for Her and Her alone.
As I lie back on the table, I arch in supplication, loving the icy surface against my back. I watch enchanted as she arranges the instruments at the foot of the table: an array of ornate knives, some barely larger than pins, other long enough to gut me. My slim penis rises eloquently for Her. My desire and anticipation causes me to pinch my right nipple hard, giving my first morsel of pain.
My Dark One leans over me and kisses me on the legs and tummy. I can feel Her hot tongue probing me roughly like a leech. Her white teeth leave little punctures that flower into redness. I feel myself melt. My offering has been accepted.
I tell Her: "I am yours now. My flesh is yours to savour.
I ache for the touch of your lips and your teeth. I want to be cut by you and finally united in you"
She over me in a vortex of solid air. Her insane vitality electrifies my skin. Her eyes are as dark as the space between galaxies, and as uncaring. I want to be nothingness in Her. The void in Her void.
I run my hand from my hip to my abdomen. The skin is tender and soft and only yearns to be broken now. I see a tiny knife flash like a falling star. I see the knife buried just above my hip and feel the dawning of a slow throbbing pain that makes me clutch my nipples and squirm towards Her.
She eyes my ribs hungrily and I can only smile, indulging her need. She uses the knife to tear a shallow smile of red and subcutaneous fat.
The pain and need flow through me like aching magma. I can only wriggle as she uses another, longer knife to peel a loin from my other side. A long arc of agony begins as she licks the blood and begins to tear at it, diving into my red ocean spray, hungering for the pearls of my viscera and spleen
I am just a rising storm of pain. Opening for Her, holding my hand over belly and ribs, inviting her attentions there. I only want to satiate Her. I will be a broken flower of blood, and distended organs in Her mouth, gleaming like ripe cherries as she spits my bones onto the wet tiles.
I cry out and she raises the long jewelled gutting blade, the prince of Her collection. I present the wreckage of my body for the final time, willing to be opened, eaten hollow, to fall into the eternal embrace of ice.
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