The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, by Anne Rice: Part 2- Excerpt
The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty, by Anne Rice–Part 2:
New sheets and coverlets had been laid on the bed; there were fresh down pillows, and roses in a vase nearby, and several candelabra.
“Now,” he said as he rose and set her before him. “We must get to bed as we have a long journey before us tomorrow. And I have still to punish you for your earlier impertinence.”
Immediately the tears stood in her eyes; she looked up at him imploring. She almost reached to cover her breasts and her sex, and then remembering herself she made her hands into two little helpless fists at her sides.
“I won’t punish you very much,” he said gently, lifting her chin. “It was just a little offense, and your first after all. But Beauty, to confess the truth, I shall love punishing you.”
She was biting her lip, and he could see she wanted to speak, and the effort to control her tongue and her hands was almost too much for her.
“All right, lovely one, what do you want to say?” he asked.
“Please, my Prince,” she begged. “I’m so afraid of you.”
“You’ll find me more reasonable than you expect,” he said.
He removed his long cloak, tossing it over a chair, and bolted the door. Then he snuffed all but a few candles.
He would sleep in his clothes as he did most nights, in the forest, or in the country inns, or in the houses of those humble peasants at which he sometimes stopped, and that was no great inconvenience to him.
And as he drew near her now, he thought he must be merciful and make her punishment quick. And seating himself on the side of the bed, he reached out for her, and pulling her wrists into his left hand he brought her naked body down over his lap so that her legs dangled over the floor helplessly.
“Very, very lovely,” he said, his right hand moving languidly over her rounded buttocks, forcing them ever so slightly apart.
Beauty was crying aloud, but muffling her cries into the bed, her hands held out in front of her by his long left arm.
And now with his right hand he spanked her buttocks hard and heard her cries grow louder. It wasn’t really much of a slap.
But it left a red mark on her. And he spanked her hard again, and he felt her writhing against him, the heat and moisture of her sex against his leg, and again he spanked her.
“I think you are sobbing more from the humiliation than the pain,” he scolded her in a soft voice.
She was struggling not to make her cries too loud.
He flattened out his right hand, and feeling the heat of her reddened buttocks drew it up and delivered another series of hard, loud slaps, smiling as he watched her struggle.
He could have spanked her much harder, for his own pleasure, and without really hurting her. But he thought the better of it. He had so many nights ahead of him for these delights.
He lifted her up now so that she was standing in front of him.
“Toss your hair back,” he commanded. Her tear-stained face was unspeakably beautiful, her lips trembling, her blue eyes gleaming with the dampness of the tears. She obeyed immediately.
“I don’t think you were so very spoilt,” he said. “I find you very obedient and eager to please, and this makes me very happy.”
He could see her relief.
“Clasp your hands behind your neck,” he said, “under your hair. That’s it. Very good.” He lifted her chin again. “And you have a lovely modest habit of looking down. But now I want you to look directly at me.”
She obeyed shyly, miserably. It seemed she felt her nakedness and her helplessness more fully now as she looked at him. Her lashes were matted and dark, and her blue eyes larger than he had thought.
“Do you find me handsome?” he asked her. “Ah, but before you answer, I should like to know the truth from you, not what you think I should like to hear, or what would be best for you to say, you understand me?”
“Yes, my Prince,” she whispered. She seemed calmer.
He reached out, massaged her right breast lightly, and then stroked her downy underarms, feeling the little curve of the muscle there beneath the tiny wisp of golden hair, and then he stroked that full, moist hair between her legs so that she sighed and trembled.
“Now,” he said, “answer my question, and describe what you see. Describe me as if you had only just met me and were confiding in your chambermaid.”
Again she bit her lip, which he dearly loved, and then, her voice a little diminished by uncertainty, she said:
“You are very handsome, my Prince, no one could deny that. And for one … for one …”
“Go on,” he said. He drew her just a little closer so that her sex was against his knee, and putting his right arm about her, he cradled her breast in his left hand and let his lips touch her cheek.
“And for one so young to be so commanding,” she said, “it’s not what one might expect.”
“And tell me how does that show itself in me, other than my actions?”
“Your manner, my Prince,” she said, her voice gaining a little strength. “The look of your eyes, such dark eyes … your face. There are none of the doubts of youth in it.”
He smiled and kissed her ear. He wondered why the wet little cleft between her legs was so very hot. His fingers could not keep from touching it. Twice already he’d had her today, and he would have her again, but he was thinking he should go about it more slowly.
“Would you like it if I were older?” he whispered.
“I had thought,” she said, “that it would be easier. To be commanded by one so very young,” she said, “is to feel one’s helplessness.”
It seemed the tears had welled up and were spilling out of her eyes, so he pushed her gently back so he might see them.
“My darling, I have awakened you from a century’s sleep, and restored you father’s Kingdom. You’re mine. And you won’t find me such a hard master. Only a very thorough master. When you think night and day and every moment only of pleasing me, things will be very easy for you.”
And as she struggled not to look away, he could see again the relief in her face, and that she was in complete awe of him.
“Now,” he said, pushing his left fingers between her legs, and drawing her close again so that she let out a little gasp before she could stop herself, “I want more of you than I’ve had before. Do you know what I mean, my Sleeping Beauty?”
She shook her head; for this moment she was in terror.
He lifted her up onto the bed and laid her down.
The candles threw a warm, almost rosy light over her. Her hair fell down on either side of the bed, and she seemed on the verge of crying out, her hands struggling to keep still at her sides.
“My darling, you have a dignity about you that shields you from me, much like your lovely golden hair shrouds you and shields you. Now I want you to surrender to me. You’ll see, and you’ll be very surprised that you wept when I first suggested it.”
The Prince bent over her. He parted her legs. He could see the battle she fought not to cover herself or turn away from him. He stroked her thighs. Then with his finger and thumb, he reached into the silky damp hair itself and felt those tender little lips and forced them very wide open.
Beauty gave a terrible shudder. With his left hand he covered her mouth, and behind his hand she cried softly. It seemed easier for her with him covering her mouth and that was all right for now, he thought. She shall be taught everything in time.
And with his right fingers, he found that tiny nodule of flesh between her tender nether lips and he worked it back and forth until she raised her hips, arching her back, in spite of herself. Her little face under his hand was the picture of distress. He smiled to himself.
But even as he smiled, he felt the hot fluid between her legs for the first time, the real fluid which had not come before with her innocent blood. “That’s it, that’s it, my darling,” he said. “And you mustn’t resist your Lord and master, hmmmm?”
Now he opened his clothing and took out his hard, eager sex, and mounting her he let it rest against her t
high as he continued to stroke her and work her.
She was twisting from one side to the other, her hands gathering up the soft sheets at her sides into knots, and it seemed her whole body grew pink, and the nipples of her breasts looked as hard as if they were tiny stones. He could not resist them.
He bit at them with his teeth, playfully, not hurting her. He licked them with his tongue, and then he licked her sex, too, and as she struggled, and blushed and moaned beneath him, he mounted her, slowly.
Again she arched her back. Her breasts were suffused with red. And as he drove his organ into her, he felt her shudder violently with unwilling pleasure.
An awful cry was muffled by the hand over her mouth; she was shuddering so violently it seemed she all but lifted him on top of her.
And then she lay still, moist, pink, with her eyes closed, breathing deeply as the tears flowed silently.
“That was lovely, my darling,” he said. “Open your eyes.”
She did it timidly.
But then she lay looking up at him.
“This has been so hard for you,” he whispered. “You could not even imagine these things happening to you. And you are red with shame, and shaking with fear, and you believe perhaps it’s one of the dreams you dreamed in your hundred years. But it’s real, Beauty,” he said. “And it is only the beginning! You think I’ve made you my Princess. But I’ve only started. The day will come when you can see nothing but me as if I were the sun and the moon, when I mean all to you, food, drink, the air you breathe. Then you will truly be mine, and these first lessons … and pleasures …” he smiled, “will seem like nothing.”
He bent over her. She lay so very still, gazing up at him.
“Now kiss me,” he commanded. “And I mean, really … kiss me.”
THE JOURNEY AND THE PUNISHMENT AT THE INN
THE NEXT morning all the Court was gathered in the Great Hall to see the Prince off, and all of the Court, including the grateful King and Queen, stood with their eyes down, bowing from the waist as the Prince came down the steps with the naked Beauty walking behind him. He had commanded her to clasp her hands on the back of her neck beneath her hair, and to walk just a little to his right so that he might see her in the corner of his eye. And she obeyed, her bare feet making not the slightest sound on the worn stone steps as she followed him.
“Dear Prince,” said the Queen, when he reached the great front door and saw that his soldiers stood mounted on the drawbridge, “we are in your eternal debt, but she is our only daughter.”
The Prince turned to look at her. She was yet beautiful, though more than twice Beauty’s age, and he wondered if she too had served his great-grandfather.
“How can you question me?” the Prince asked patiently. “I have restored your Kingdom, and you know full well if you remember anything of the ways of my land, that Beauty will be much enhanced by her service there.”
Then the telltale blush came to the Queen as it had to the King before, and she bowed her head in acceptance.
“But surely you will allow Beauty some clothing,” she whispered, “at least until she reaches the border of your Kingdom.”
“All those towns between here and my Kingdom have owed their allegiance to us for a century. And in each I will proclaim your restoration and new dominion. Can you ask for more than that? The spring is warm already; Beauty shall suffer no ill effects from serving me immediately.”
“Forgive us, your Highness,” the King hastened to say. “But is it the same in this age? Beauty’s servitude will not be forever?”
“It is the same now as it was always. Beauty will be returned in time. And she shall be greatly enhanced in wisdom and beauty. Now, tell her to obey as your parents commanded you to obey when you were sent to us.”
“The Prince speaks the truth, Beauty,” the King said in a low voice, still unwilling to look at his daughter. “Obey him. Obey the Queen. And though you find your servitude surprising and difficult at times, be confident you will return, as he says, greatly changed for the better.”
The Prince smiled.
The horses were restless on the drawbridge. The Prince’s charger, a black stallion, was particularly hard to restrain, so the Prince, bidding them all farewell again, turned and picked up Beauty.
He heaved her easily over his right shoulder, clasping her ankles to his waist, and heard her cry out softly as she fell over his back. He could see her long hair sweep the ground just before he mounted the stallion.
All the soldiers fell into place behind him.
He rode into the forest.
The sun spilled down in glorious rays through the heavy green leaves, the sky now brilliant and blue overhead only to vanish in a shifting green-tinted light as the Prince rode on at the head of his soldiers, humming to himself, and now and then singing.
Beauty’s lithe, warm body swayed slightly over his shoulder. He could feel her trembling, and he understood her agitation. Her naked buttocks were still red from the spanking he had given her, and he could well imagine the succulent vision she was to the men who rode after him.
As he walked his horse through a dense glade where the fallen leaves were thick and red and brown beneath him, the Prince tied the rein on his saddle, and with his left hand felt the soft hairy little pelt between Beauty’s legs, and leaned his face against her warm hip, kissing it gently.
After a while, he pulled her down into his lap, turning her as before so she rested against his left arm, and he kissed her red face and brushed the long golden strands of her hair away from it, and then he suckled her breasts almost idly as though taking little drinks from them.
“Put your head on my shoulder,” he said. And she inclined to him obediently at once.
But when he went to sling her over his shoulder again, she gave a little desperate whimper. He did not allow this to stop him. And having her firmly in place, her ankles clasped to his hip, he scolded her lovingly, and gave her several hard spanks with his left hand until he heard her crying.
“You must never protest,” he repeated. “Not with sound, not with gesture. Only your tears may show your Prince what you feel, and never think that he does not wish to know what you feel. Now, respectfully, answer me.”
“Yes, my Prince,” Beauty whimpered softly.
He thrilled at the sound of it.
When they came to the small town in the middle of the forest, there was great excitement, as everyone had already heard of the enchantment being broken.
And as the Prince rode into the crooked little street with its high half-timbered houses blocking out the sky, people ran to the narrow windows and doorways. They crowded into the cobblestone alleyways.
Behind him, the Prince could hear his men in hushed voices telling the townspeople who he was, that it was their Lord who had broken the enchantment. The girl he carried with him was the Sleeping Beauty.
Beauty was sobbing softly, her body struggling with these sobs, but the Prince held her firmly.
Finally with a great crowd following him, he arrived at the Inn, and his horse, with loud clops, entered the courtyard.
His page quickly helped him down.
“We’ll stop only for food and drink,” said the Prince. “We can go miles before sundown.”
He stood Beauty on her feet and watched with admiration as her hair fell down around her. And he turned her around twice, pleased to see she kept her hands clasped behind her neck and her eyes down as he looked at her.
He kissed her devotedly.
“Do you see how they all look at you?” he said. “Do you feel how they admire your beauty? They are adoring you,” he said. And opening her lips again, he sucked another kiss out of her, his hand squeezing her sore buttocks.
It seemed her lips clung to his as if she were afraid to let him go, and then he kissed her eyelids.
“Now everyone is going to want to have a look at Beauty,” the Prince said to the Captain of his Guard. “Bind her hands over her head by a rope from the sign over t
he Inn gate, and let the people have their fill of her. But no one is to touch her. They can look all they like, but you stand guard and see that no one touches her. I’ll have your food sent out to you.”
“Yes, my Lord,” said the Captain of the Guard.
But as the Prince gently gave Beauty over to him, she leaned forward, her lips out to the Prince, and he received her kiss gratefully. “You’re very sweet, my darling,” he said. “Now be modest and very very good. I should be very disappointed if all this adulation made my Beauty vain.” He kissed her again, and let the Captain have her.
Then going inside and ordering his meat and ale, the Prince watched through the diamond-paned windows.
The Captain of the Guard did not dare touch Beauty, except to put the rope about her wrists. He led her by this to the open gate of the courtyard, and throwing the rope up over the iron rod that held the sign of the Inn, he quickly secured her hands above her head, so that she was almost on tiptoe.
Then he motioned for the people to move back, and he stood against the wall with his arms folded as they pressed to look at her.
There were buxom women with stained aprons, and coarse men in breeches and heavy leather shoes, and the young well-to-do men of the town in their velvet cloaks with their hands on their hips as they eyed Beauty from a distance, unwilling to elbow in the crowd. And several young women, their elaborate white headdresses freshly done up, who had come out lifting their hems fastidiously as they looked at her.
At first everyone was whispering, but now people began to speak more freely.
Beauty had turned her face into her arm and let her hair shield her face, but then a soldier came out from the Prince and said:
“His Majesty said to turn her and lift her chin so they might have a better look at her.”
An approving murmur went up from the crowd. “Very very lovely,” said one of the young men.
“And this is what so many died for,” said an old Cobbler.
The Captain of the Guard lifted Beauty’s chin, and holding the rope above her, said gently: “You must turn around, Princess.”
“O, please, Captain,” she whispered.
“Don’t make a sound, Princess, I beg you. Our Lord is very strict,” he said. “And it’s his wish that everyone admire you.”
Beauty, her cheeks flaming, obeyed, turning so the crowd could see her reddened buttocks and then again to show her breasts and her sex as the Captain kept his finger under her chin lightly.
It seemed she breathed deeply as though trying to remain very calm. The young men were calling her beautiful and saying her breasts were magnificent.
“But such buttocks,” whispered an old woman nearby. “You can see that she’s been spanked. I doubt the poor Princess did anything much to deserve it.”
“Not much,” said a young man near her. “Except have the most beautiful and pertly shaped buttocks imaginable.”
Beauty was trembling.
Finally the Prince himself came out, ready to leave, and seeing the crowd as attentive as before, he himself took the rope down, and holding it like a short leash above Beauty’s head, he turned her. He seemed amused by the crowd’s grateful nods, and thanks, and bows to him; and very gracious in his generosity.
“Lift your chin, Beauty, I shouldn’t have to lift it,” he reproved her with a little deliberate frown of disappointment.
Beauty obeyed, her face so red that her eyebrows and eyelashes gleamed golden in the sun, and the Prince kissed her.
“Come here, old man,” the Prince said to the old Cobbler. “Have you ever seen such loveliness?”
“No, your Majesty,” said the old man. His sleeves were rolled to the elbows, and his legs were slightly bowed. His hair was gray but his green eyes gleamed with a special almost wistful pleasure. “She is truly a magnificent Princess, your Majesty, worth all the deaths of those who tried to claim her.”
“Yes, I suppose so, and worth all the bravery of the Prince who did claim her,” smiled the Prince.
Everyone laughed politely. But they couldn’t conceal their awe of him. They were staring at his armor, at his sword, and above all at his young face and dark black hair that fell to his shoulders.
The Prince drew the Cobbler closer. “Here,” he said, “I give you permission if you like just to feel her treasures.”
The old man smiled at the Prince gratefully and almost innocently. He reached out, and hesitating a moment, felt Beauty’s breasts. Beauty shivered, and tried obviously to repress a little cry.
The old man touched her sex.
Then the Prince drew up her little leash so she was standing on tiptoe; her body stiffened and seemed to grow more tense and at the same time more lovely, breasts and buttocks high, her calf muscles lifted, her chin and throat a perfect line down to her swaying bosom.
“That’s all. You must all go now,” said the Prince.
Obediently they backed away, but they continued to watch, as the Prince mounted his horse, and instructing Beauty to clasp her hands behind her neck, he ordered her to walk before him.
Beauty led the way out of the Inn yard, the Prince walking his horse behind her.
The people made way for her. They couldn’t take their eyes off her lovely vulnerable body, and they squeezed against the narrow walls of the town to follow the spectacle to the edge of the forest.
When they had left the town behind, the Prince told Beauty to come to him. He gathered her up and seated her before him again, and kissed her again, and scolded her:
“You found that so hard,” he crooned. “Why were you so proud? Did you think yourself too good to be shown to the people?”
“I’m sorry, my Prince,” she whispered.
“Don’t you see, if you think only of pleasing me, and pleasing those to whom I show you, it will be simple for you.” He kissed her ear, holding her tight to his chest. “You should have been proud of your breasts and your shapely hips. You should have asked yourself, ‘Am I pleasing my Prince? Do the people find me pleasing?’ ”
“Yes, my Prince,” Beauty said meekly.
“You are mine, Beauty,” the Prince said a little more sternly. “And there is no command that you must shrink from obeying ever. If I tell you to please the lowliest vassal in the field, you will strain to obey me perfectly. He is your Lord then because I have said so. All those to whom I offer you are your Lords.”
“Yes, my Prince,” she said, but she was in great distress. He stroked her breasts, pinching them firmly now and then, and kissed her until he could feel her body struggling against him, and feel her nipples growing hard. It seemed she wanted to speak.
“What is it, Beauty?”
“Pleasing you, my Prince, pleasing you …” she whispered, as though her thoughts had spread into a delirium.
“Yes, pleasing me, that is your life now. How many of those in the world know such clarity, such simplicity? You please me and I shall always tell you exactly how to please me,”
“Yes, my Prince,” she sighed. But she was crying again.
“I will treasure you all the more for it. The girl I found in the castle room was nothing to me such as you are now, my devoted Princess.”
But the Prince was not entirely satisfied with the way in which he was instructing Beauty. He told her when they reached another town at nightfall that he was going to strip a little more dignity away from her to make it easier for her.
And while the townspeople pressed their faces to the leaded glass windows of the Inn, the Prince had Beauty wait on his table.
On her hands and knees she hurried across the rough boards of the Inn floor to fetch his plate from the kitchen. And though she was allowed to walk back with it, she was again on all fours to fetch his flagon. The soldiers devoured their supper, throwing silent glances at her by the light of the fire.
She wiped the table for the Prince and when a morsel of food spilled from his plate to the floor, he commanded Beauty to eat it. With tears spilling from her eyes, Beauty obeyed, and then he gathered her, still on her knees, into his arms and rewarded her with dozens of wet and loving kisses. Obediently she put her arms around his neck.
But this little morsel spilling had given him an idea. He ordered her to quickly fetch a plate from the kitchen again, and then told her to lay it on the floor at his feet.
He put food for her there from his plate, and told her to lift her heavy hair behind her shoulders and eat it only with her mouth.
“You are my kitten,” he laughed gaily. “And I would forbid you all those tears if they weren’t so beautiful. Do you want to please me?”
“Yes, my Prince,” she said.
With his foot he pushed her plate several paces away and told her to turn her buttocks to him as she continued her meal. He admired it, realizing the red marks from her spanking had almost healed. With the toe of his leather boot, he nudged at the silken hair he could see between her legs, felt the moist plump lips beneath the hair, and sighed, thinking her so very beautiful.
When she had finished her meal, with her lips she pushed the plate back to his chair as he ordered her to do it, and then he wiped her lips himself and fed her some wine from his cup.
He watched her long beautiful throat as she swallowed, and kissed her eyelids.
“Now listen to me, I want you to learn from this,” he said. “Everyone here can see you, all your charms, you’re aware of it. But I want you to be very aware of it. Behind you, the townspeople at the windows are admiring you as they did when I brought you through the town. This should make you proud of yourself, not vain, but proud, proud that you have pleased me, and caught their admiration.”
“Yes, my Prince,” she said when he paused.
“Now think, you are very naked and very helpless, and you are mine completely.”
“Yes, my Prince,” she cried softly.
“That is your life now, and you are to think of nothing else, and regret nothing else. I want that dignity peeled away from you as if it were so many skins of the onion. I don’t mean that you should ever be graceless. I mean that you should surrender to me.”
“Yes, my Prince,” she said.
The Prince looked up at the Innkeeper who stood at the kitchen door with his wife and his daughter. They came to attention at once. But the Prince looked only at the daughter. She was a young woman, very pretty in her own way, though nothing compared to Beauty. She had black hair and round cheeks, and a very tiny waist, and she dressed as many peasant women did, in a low-cut ruffled shirtwaist, and a short broad skirt that revealed her smart little ankles. She had an innocent face. She was watching Beauty in wonder, her big brown eyes moving anxiously to the Prince and then shyly back to Beauty who knelt at the Prince’s feet in the firelight.
“Now, as I told you,” the Prince said softly to Beauty, “all here admire you, and they enjoy you, the sight of you, your plump little rear, your lovely legs, those breasts which I cannot stop myself from kissing. But there is no one here, not the lowliest, who is not better than you, my Princess, if I command you to serve him.”
Beauty was frightened. She nodded quickly as she answered “Yes, my Prince,” and then very impulsively she bent and kissed the Prince’s boot, but then she appeared terrified.
“No, that is very good, my darling,” the Prince, stroking her neck, reassured her. “That is very good. If I allow you one gesture to speak your heart unbidden it is that one. You may always show me respect of your own accord in that manner.”
Again Beauty pressed her lips to the leather. But she was trembling.
“These townspeople hunger for you, hunger for more of your loveliness,” the Prince continued. “And I think they deserve a little taste of it that will delight them.”
Beauty kissed the Prince’s boot again, and let her lips rest there.
“O, don’t think I should really let them have their fill of your charms. O, no,” the Prince said thoughtfully.
“But I should use this opportunity, both to reward their devoted attention and teach you that punishment will come whenever I desire to give it. You need not be disobedient to merit it. I will punish when it pleases me. Sometimes that will be the only reason for it.”
Beauty couldn’t keep herself from whimpering.
The Prince smiled and beckoned to the Innkeeper’s daughter. But she was so frightened of him that she didn’t come forward until her father pushed her.
“My dear,” said the Prince gently. “In the kitchen, have you a flat wooden instrument, for shoveling the hot pans into the oven?”
There was a faint movement throughout the room as the soldiers glanced at one another. The people outside were pressing closer to the windows. The young girl nodded and quickly returned with a wooden paddle, very flat and smooth from years of use, with a good handle.
“Excellent,” said the Prince.
But Beauty was crying helplessly.
The Prince quickly ordered the Innkeeper’s daughter to seat herself on the edge of the high hearth which was the height of a chair, and told Beauty, on her hands and knees, to go to her.
“My dear,” he said to the Innkeeper’s daughter, “these good people deserve a little spectacle. Their life is hard and barren. My men deserve it as well. And my Princess can well use the chastisement.”
Beauty knelt crying before the girl who, seeing what she was to do, was fascinated.
“Up over her lap, Beauty,” said the Prince, “hands behind your neck, and lift your lovely hair out of the way. At once!” he said, almost sharply.
Pricked by his voice, Beauty almost scurried to obey, and all those around her saw her tear-stained face.
“Keep your chin up like that, yes, lovely. Now, my dear,” said the Prince looking at the girl who held Beauty over her lap and the wooden paddle in her other hand. “I want to see if you can wield that as hard as a man might wield it. Do you think you can do that?”
He could not keep from smiling at the girl’s delight and desire to please. She nodded murmuring a respectful reply, and when he gave her the command, she brought the paddle down hard on Beauty’s naked buttocks. Beauty couldn’t keep still. She struggled to keep quiet, but she couldn’t keep still, and finally even the whimpers and moans escaped her.
The tavern girl spanked her harder and harder, and the Prince enjoyed this, savoring it far more than the spanking he had given Beauty himself.
It was because he could see it much better, see Beauty’s breasts heaving, and the tears spilling down her face, and her little buttocks straining, as if, without moving, Beauty might somehow escape or deflect the girl’s hard blows.
Finally, when the buttocks were very red but not welted, he told the girl to stop.
He could see his soldiers enthralled and all the townspeople as well, and then he snapped his fingers and told Beauty to come to him.
“Now eat your suppers, all of you, talk amongst yourselves, do as you like,” he said quickly.
For a moment no one obeyed him. Then the soldiers turned to one another, and those outside, seeing that Beauty was retired down to kneeling at the Prince’s feet, her hair veiling her red face, her raw and stinging buttocks pressed to her ankles, were murmuring and talking at the windows.
The Prince gave Beauty another drink of wine. He was not sure he was entirely satisfied with her. He was thinking of many things.
He called the Innkeeper’s daughter to him and told her she had been very good, gave her a gold coin, and took the paddle from her.
Finally it was time to go up. And driving Beauty before him, he gave her a few gentle but brisk spanks to hurry her up the stairs to the bedchamber.
BEAUTY STOOD at the foot of the bed, her hands clasped to her neck, her buttocks throbbing with a warm pain that felt so much better now than the spanking she had lately received that it was almost pleasure.
She had for the moment stopped crying. She had only just pulled down the covers for the Prince, with her teeth, her hands clasped behind her back, and then with her teeth taken his boots to the edge of the room.
And now she waited for further commands, trying to watch him, though her eyes were cast down, without his realizing it.
He had bolted the door, and he was sitting on the side of the bed.
And his black hair, loose and curling at his shoulders gleamed in the light of the tallow candle. His face was very beautiful to her, perhaps because in spite of the size of the features, they were all rather delicately molded. She did not know for certain.
Even his hands enthralled her. The fingers were so long, so white, so delicate.
She was terribly relieved to be alone with him. The moments below in the Inn had been such an agony to her, and even though he had brought the wooden paddle with him and might spank her much harder with it than that dreadful girl, she was so glad to be alone with him that she could not be afraid of it. She was afraid, however, that she hadn’t pleased him.
She searched her mind for faults. She had obeyed all his commands, and he understood how difficult it was for her. He knew completely what it meant for her to be stripped naked and revealed to everyone, to be helpless and made public and that this surrender of which he spoke could come in acts and gestures long before it could come from her mind. But no matter how hard she tried to excuse herself, she could not help but wondering if she could have tried harder.
Did he want her to cry out more when she was spanked? She was uncertain. Just thinking of that girl spanking her in front of everyone made her cry again, and she knew that the Prince would see her tears, and he might wonder why now, when she’d been told to stand still at the foot of the bed, she was crying.
But the Prince seemed deep in thought.
This is my life, she told herself, trying to calm herself. He has awakened me and claimed me. My parents are restored, their Kingdom is theirs again, and more significantly, life is theirs again, and I belong to him.
She felt a great relaxation when she thought these things and a stirring in herself that seemed to make her sore and throbbing buttocks feel suddenly warmer. The pain made her so shamefully aware of that part of her body!
But then as she squeezed her eyes against these soft and slow tears, she looked down at her swelling breasts and the tiny hard nipples and felt that same awareness of herself there too, just as if he’d slapped her breasts which he hadn’t done in a great while, and she felt softly bewildered.
My life, she struggled to understand. And she remembered that in the afternoon in the warm forest when she had been walking before his horse, she had felt her own long hair on her buttocks, brushing them as she walked ahead of him, and she had wondered if she looked beautiful to him, and she had wished that he would pick her up then, and kiss her and caress her. Of course she had not dared to look back. She couldn’t imagine what he would have done had she been so foolish as to do that, but the sun had thrown their shadows ahead of them and she had seen the shadow of his profile, and felt such a pleasure that she was ashamed of it, and her legs had felt weak and there had been the oddest feeling in her, something she had never known in her earlier life, though perhaps in her dreams.
She was awakened now, at the foot of his bed, by his low but firm command.
“Come here, my darling.” He motioned for her to kneel before him.
“This shirt is to be opened down the front, and you will learn to do so with your lips and teeth, and I will be patient with you,” he said.
She had thought it would be the paddle. And, very relieved, she went almost too quickly to obey, pulling the thick tie that closed the shirt at his throat. His flesh felt warm and smooth to her. Men’s flesh. So different, she thought. And she quickly pulled loose the second tie and the third. She had a struggle with the fourth which was at his waist, but he didn’t move, and then when she was finished, she bowed her head, her hands as before on the back of her neck and waited.
“Open my breeches,” he said to her.
Her cheeks flamed; she could feel it. But again she didn’t hesitate. She pulled the fabric forward over the hook until the hook slipped out and let it go. And now she could see his sex, bulging there, painfully twisted. She wanted suddenly to kiss it, but she didn’t dare and was shocked at her impulse.
…Until Next Time…
End Part 2
Previously Published at: https://onlinereadfreenovel.com/anne-rice/33542-the_claiming_of_sleeping_beauty.html
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