The drunkard hangs on me like a big, fat monkey as we leave the pub. His saliva is sticky on my cheek and neck, smelling of alcohol. My stomach churning, I let him drag me around a corner in a dark alleyway, where he throws me against the wall and starts groping under my skirt.
“You’ll like this, Saph’ra,” he says, lowering himself and grabbing my backside with both hands. My fingers claw the stonewall behind me, my throat clogging in disgust as I expect his tongue to touch me down there, but it doesn’t get to.
The Marquis’s blade flashes from the dark as he grabs the monkey by his hair and forces him up, bringing his bloodshot eyes at the level of mine.
Blood splashes warm on my cheek and neck, and I throw my head to the side. The gush makes my breath catch. I’m gasping for air, blinking, realizing what’s happening just inches from my face.
Joyous and Stone Mask grab me and shove me in the car waiting at the end of the alley before I get a chance to come back to myself or see the bleeding body, but I hear the metallic swish when the Marquis wipes the blade clean. On the ride I can’t stop shaking my head, scared and shocked and disgusted.
We’re at the Manor soon, and the guards see me to my chamber in the dark tower. It’s still very much a gothic dungeon, barely resembling a place to reside but for the bed with ragged black canopy, the fireplace and the few furnishings. The guards start the fireplace to warm this luxury prison, while I scramble to the bathroom.
My hands grip the edges of the sink as I breathe in deeply to calm the nausea. I don’t have the heart to look up at myself in the mirror, so I keep my gaze down on the red pumps made of patent leather. Whore-like. The leather skirt is a little too tight on my hips, and bits of pale flesh swell through the loops of black net-stockings.
A fit of madness takes over me, and I rip them off, groaning through gritted teeth, the nausea and anger pushing saliva at the corners of my mouth. Only when I sink in the hot bathtub – that someone already prepared – I manage to calm down, turning from furious to a vegetable.
I lie in the bubbles, staring at the dark vaulted ceiling, then at my own hair undulating in the water over my breasts. Dark golden tresses mingle with thin streams of the dead bastard’s blood that plague me with fear, a fear that subsides when the Marquis’s presence fills my head like an opiate.
I look up at him, looming tall and elegant and arrogant over me. His pitch black eyes make a demonic contrast to his clear-boned, ivory face, and his lips stir me in a way they should not. Rich dark hair frames the head I’ve painted so often with my bare hands, eager to feel him, to understand him. Now I’m half-successful at hating him.
He inspects me up and down, and I think there’s hunger in his gaze. A rough kind of desire that hurts more than pleases me. It seems to be an effort for him to turn and place the lonely rose he carries on the edge of the sink where my hand has been just minutes ago.
“Forgive me,” he says in his deceiving, luring voice, and makes to leave.
“Please,” I stop him, my voice a rasp. Tears well in my eyes. “Don’t have me do this again.”
He keeps his back to me.
“He wasn’t a victim, Saphira. He was a dirt bag who’s raped and killed. You did it for a good cause.”
“That doesn’t change the fact that you enjoyed watching.”
Pause. “I did not enjoy it.”
“You sound almost sincere.”
“Have I not always been sincere?”
Yes he has. More so than everyone else.
“Just tell me it’s going to stop. Tell me it will have an end some day.”
“When they’re all bleeding in the gutter, Saphira.”
“How many were they?” I sound desperate.
“You’ll find out soon.” His voice almost cracks. As I realize the implications for me, disgust makes me weak at the stomach again.
“Please, don’t,” I whisper through quivering lips, close to breaking.
“I told you, Saphira. I’ll make my revenge epic.”
Enjoyed this? Check out episodes of the prequel, Saphira, here, or the whole prequel in the Christmas Story Book for Adults, available here. Stay tuned for a further episode on Tuesday next week. Until then, enjoy all the quizzes, stories and goodies available here especially for refined, passionate personalities.
NEXT EPISODE – Ep. 2 of The Marquis – Shadows of the Past
PREQUEL – Saphira in Christmas Story Book for Adults.