Gynophagia Chronicles: Samantha

Sunday, September 13, 2218, 6:15am

The Wells Home 1110 Beagle St. San Ramon CA.

From Samantha Marie Wells’ Memoirs

Mom woke me up at eight yesterday, Saturday. Late, of course. We usually get up about seven.

Are you going to sleep all day?” She asked. No, I wasn’t. Why did I not stay at Rebecca’s? It felt weird, that was partly true at least, so I came home. What were my plans today? I had lots of work to do, I told her, and I was thinking about going to the library… oh good! Everyone’s going out and Celine isn’t feeling well, could I stay home and watch her? And take her temperature every hour, Mom was truly worried, I could see it in her face. And make sure she drinks lots of water. Oh, and you need to clean the bathroom, that’s what you get for sleeping in! Great.

So, my sisters scattered to places unknown. My Brothers ran off with Dad to where ever. Mom was off to spend the day with Mrs. Khan…

I spent the day with my PDA strapped to my right thigh and Celine’s head in my lap on the couch. That wasn’t so bad as I thought, because she was quiet with her nose in my belly as I wrote and reviewed. The first thing I did was fire off an email to Marcus Jackson. Mrs. Carrington had graciously sent me his private email address. In it I gave him all the information Michael had told me to give him, the warning about the plot against his wife and to take care. Part of me hoped he wouldn’t think me a total idiot.

For the rest of the morning I focused on my review of Tropicana Blue first, paying special attention to the show itself. The memory of Danny was still fresh in my mind, and what happened to him… I felt like I’d turned a page. Something was different. I found myself absently stroking Celine’s hair as I wrote about him. When I noticed what I was doing, I looked down at her profile and noted how much like him she was. Not in looks, mind you, but in… God, I’m not sure. She just reminded me of him. Maybe is that I’ve always thought of Celine as an innocent. We both wore T-Shirts, and I wore panties under them. Celine did not, and the tendency of hers to ride up and expose her lovely young hips made it easier to slip the thermometer in every hour and record her temperature, which was only slightly elevated, every hour on a note pad as Mrs. Khan had instructed Mom. Other than that, I mostly forgot she was there, only keenly aware of her when Danny crossed my mind. The memory of his soft lips made me brush my finger over hers. She’d turned thirteen last June and still had her boyish figure, her hips had yet to start flaring. Her breasts had begun to swell nicely in the last few weeks, however. She might be a B-cup, like me or perhaps a little smaller, like Jenna. In December, she, Danielle and Mara were scheduled to have their cycle regulator implanted in December. It would slow her period down to a three month cycle. God I couldn’t imagine living with a monthly cycle. I got my regulator just shy of my fourteenth birthday, just before my boobs boobed up. Fatima suspected, in spite of Mom’s worry, that Celine was on an oestrogen overdose and was about to have her period early, and that she might need to get her regulator much sooner. But Celine slept peacefully, her slight temperature allowing me to play “Mom” for a day as I worked.

By noon, I’d sent in my review of the club to the Herald and began working on my piece on Jakim Golguli and Conservative India. That piece I sent to Ashima, I doubted the Herald would want it. I spent the rest of the afternoon reviewing my assignments, Math, History and English. It was a perfectly quiet day that virtually flew by… that is, till the clock struck five.

First, Patti and Miki arrived, fighting about something each did somewhere to the other that caused untold embarrassment that was certainly fatal. I stayed out of it, trying to protect Celine’s ears. Then Dani and Mara decided they hated each other and when Jenna got home all hell broke loose. Have I mentioned Jenna has the ability to break glass with her shrill screeches? My eardrums sometimes forget.

Daddy arrived home and, as soon as the door opened you could have heard a pin drop! Daddy is not one to tolerate the kind of oestrogen fuelled chaos so common among girls between twelve and fifteen. My sisters can cause mayhem with the best of them! He’s about as ready to deliver a spanking as any father has ever been, and all of us know it. It’s not so much the sting, it’s having your bare bottom schooled in front of all your sisters that’s the real deterrent.

With Daddy came a very strangely giddy Eric. It was creepy! My elder brother is so reserved most of the time, so dutiful it’s difficult to see him the way he was that day. Jimmy trailed behind them with dark circles under his eyes and looking like he’d been hit by a freight train. Jimmy did not sit for dinner, which Grace and Jenna cooked after I handed them the note Mom left.

Mom arrived home late, fell into Daddy’s arms and was carried upstairs with us all looking on. Almost immediately after we heard the master bedroom door close Celine’s period started… cleaning that mess up… never mind. That was my Saturday. All through it, as peaceful and serene as most of it was, I felt… a little different. Slightly surreal. I had no idea how right I was…

On Sunday we woke, Jenna, Gracie and I, at our usual weekday time of quarter past six. Teeth, Shower, Hair Washed and Conditioned, and into nothing but sneakers and terry cloth robes, the three of us followed Mom into the cab Fatima had sent. We combed our hair out in the cab. I don’t think the cabbie was very happy about that.

An imposing wrought iron gate opened for us on the east side of Blackhawk just off Tassajara Road and the cab slipped into the front yard of what I can only describe as a small palace. It was all white with columns and terraces and huge windows top and bottom. What looked like a two story greenhouse protruded from the right hand side midway to the right wing of the three story edifice. We drove around an ornate brick and marble fountain at the centre of the circular driveway where a woman of about thirty years stood wearing her light brown hair up and an exact copy of Mom’s gray house dress complete with white collar. The only difference was that it buttoned rather than snapped.

Mrs. Wells?” Said the woman as we stepped out of the cab. “My name is Miriam, and I’ll be at your service whenever you need me. Mrs. Tucker and Mrs. Khan are anxious to see you. If you would follow me, please?”

We followed. We followed into the house through the front door and into the foyer. We followed dragging our collective jaws behind us. We stepped in onto green marble tiles shined to mirrors that reflected the fresco painted on the ceiling three stories above us. The painting was filled with clouds and naked females being guided by angels. The walls were white and both the next two stories up looked down upon us over banisters. The staircases leading up were curved on either side with green-gray carpeting and brass stair rods holding it to the steps.

From the foyer we passed into a hallway that led toward the back of the home. On either side of us were two enormous rooms. One was a dining room with a beautifully crafted table and fifty or so chairs at it. On the right was what appeared to be a ballroom. The parquet floors looked ready for dancing and there was a grand piano set at the far end on a stage.

We, however, passed out of the house through French doors and onto a grand porch made mostly of dark concrete with granite accents, steps and banisters. Beyond that was a lawn, at least ten acres of lawn ringed by fifteen foot hedges. A very shiny helicopter sat on a pad midway down the right side and close to the edge and very near an Olympic sized pool beyond it, complete with dive platform.

Closer to the house was the nuptial gazebo. It looked permanent, but its placement even I could see was not optimal, and there was another gazebo, a much larger one parked to the left near the two story sub-wing of the home that jutted back from the main house. Maids in very fine uniforms, not painted on, but real cloth, were setting up padded white folding chairs, hundreds of them. At the front of them sat that temporary gazebo where Jake and Ashima would be married. From each side of it sprouted lattice wings upon which were flowers adorned to look like permanent vines that stretched up the wings and over the gazebo as if they’d been growing for years.

Miriam went left. We followed her off the porch down the granite steps and onto a path that led to a covered porch with stained double doors on the ground floor of the two story sub-wing. By itself it was a relatively small portion of the house but it was twice the size of our own and appeared to be a separate residence, which it, indeed, turned out to be. We found that out when Miriam opened the front door and let us in.

Mr. Tucker,” Miriam said over the muffled sound of many women chatting excitedly behind closed doors. “This is Mrs. Khan’s friend, Mrs. Wells and her daughters.”

Pleased to meet you, Mrs. Wells,” said the man. “I’m Martin Tucker.” Like Jake, the Senior Mr. Tucker was tall with a ruggedly a handsome face. A shock of short white hair topped his head and he held a mug of steaming coffee he transferred to his left hand as he offered Mom his right. He wore red flannel, blue jeans and boots, not at all what I would have expected of the master of this place. I thought I saw sawdust on his collar, as if he’d just come from his job in the trades. He appeared as any handsome tradesman might, and looked the part perfectly.

My son speaks very highly of you and your girls,” Mr. Tucker added as Mom took his offered hand.

Why thank you,” Mom said. “This is Grace and Jenna and Samantha. My eldest girls. I have five more at home, and I think you’ve already met my sons.”

I have,” Mr. Tucker said. “They’re very energetic boys, especially Eric. They seem to like to amuse and exasperate my son. He talks about their recent dealings constantly. My lovely wife has me playing cook, so I’m busy making breakfast for the wedding party. Pancakes, bacon and eggs, is that alright?”

Mom nodded. “Thank you! We’re all off meat,” Mom said. “But pancakes and eggs would be wonderful. And the coffee... I know Jenna is a bit of a fiend when it comes to caffeine.”

It’ll be right up,” Mr. Tucker smiled.

This way, Mrs. Wells,” Miriam beckoned.

The next room over had obviously been a family room before it was rearranged to make way for the throng of chatty women in it. Couches had been pushed up against walls and bookshelves to leave a wide open space in the middle. Even a casual observer could tell those couches once formed a horse shoe that surrounded the fireplace over which hung a seventy inch flat screen. Beyond it was a dining room with a finely crafted dark stained table that could seat at least sixteen, maybe twenty. There were certainly enough matching chairs.

The source of the excited chatting we’d heard since we entered the home some nine women that included Fatima Khan. Three girls, one of them no older than eleven sat in chairs having their hair put up by hairdressers in pink smocks with their names embroidered upon them.

Jessica!” Mrs. Khan called. “You are here at last!”

Fatima, dressed as her companions in a splendid and flimsy silk kimono rushed up to Mom and embraced her with a kiss on either cheek and one for each of my sisters and me. “Come! You must meet Claudia.”

Claudia turned out to be the second Mrs. Tucker, Jake’s step mother, but the one he’d known as “Mom” since he was five. She was tall and regal looking with a Macedonian face one might find on a classic Greek sculpture. Her smile was reserved and as slight as her form. Her breasts were suspended high on her body by a well engineered bra whose outline I could see through the fabric of her gold and red kimono. Her gray streaked dark hair was piled high atop her head and sported some kind of adornment I’d never seen before, protruding here and there all around it.

For the flowers,” Mrs. Tucker told Gracie, who had the poor manners to ask. “They are miniature vases so the flowers don’t wilt prematurely. That would be awful, do you not think?”

I only then realized Mrs. Khan sported the same.

This is my daughter, Elsa,” Mrs. Tucker introduced a young woman of eighteen who was tall like herself and quite pretty with hazel green eyes and tawny blonde hair done up with a top-knot and pony tail. The girls in the chairs were getting similar treatment from their dressers, already the smocked workers were tying the hair up of the three girls so that the pony tail made them look like they might be genies ready to pop out of a bottle.

These are June and Rosie, they’re twins. And this is Kaitlyn,” Mrs. Tucker introduced. “Their mother was culled three weeks ago and we’ve taken them in. They’re my husband’s by his concubine, who was their mother.” She said the last with a strange tone that I couldn’t quite understand. Was it regret or was it annoyance? I simply could not tell.

Kaitlyn was the youngest of the fresh faced three. All were fair skinned and sported profuse freckles that gave them a friendly look even if they frowned. Rosie and June were sixteen, both almost a year older than I. Kaitlyn was just eleven. These three foundlings and Elsa, I found out as I sat down to have my hair done, would be Mrs. Tuckers entourage as we would be for Mrs. Khan.

Kaitlyn I liked instantly, and she stood by me as my hair was teased by one of the hairdressers and pulled up. Kaitlyn’s easy smile was all front teeth and giggles, giving her the appearance of a happy chipmunk. She stood next to me and held my hand as we chatted about beauty and romance and a boy she really liked at her school in Walnut Creek.

I wanna be pretty like you!” Kaitlyn told me, making my cheeks burn.

You already are!” I shot back, and I enjoyed the blushes and giggles as she played bashful and went tongue tied. Next to me, Mom squeezed my hand.

Yes, Mom?” I asked as I turned to her. With her hair up and shining wet eyes and a little smile she took my breath away for a moment. Have I mentioned how beautiful she is to me?

Nothing,” Mom said. “You’re just going to make a wonderful mother…”

Never fear! The genius is here!” Came a now familiar declaration. Lawrence Gray, Genius, had arrived wearing his immaculate suit, receding hairline and his smug expression. “Anti” Antoine and Roberta trailed behind him carrying piles of flat boxes they could barely see over.

Larry!” Mrs. Tucker lit up. “Good to see you are here early. Did you finish the revisions we spoke of?”

Finish them? Oh no, I did not simply finish them! I made them perrr-fect, my sweet lady! Just wait until you see! You will be enamoured of my brilliance even more than you already are! Oh! My sweet little lamb is here!” He touched Kaitlyn’s chin. “And my sultry angel!” He caressed Rosie’s cheek. “GODDESSES! I must focus!” He clapped his hands. “Minions! To work!” Then he grinned. “Just wait until you see yourselves adorned in my genius!”

I took Kaitlyn’s kimono and held her hand as Antoine inspected her nubile beauty and touched up minor issues. Her body was decorated with pink snap dragons painted over the freckles sprinkled over where the sun had touched her skin.

That tickles, Anti!” Kaitlyn giggled. “Are you doing that on purpose?”

Maybe,” Antoine grinned as he fixed a smudge on Kaitlyn’s lovely bottom, and looked up at me with a smile. “How did your interview turn out?”

Oh! Uhm, I’m pretty happy with it. Mr. Golguli was very nice on the phone.”

Well, that’s good,” Antoine said. He dried his work with a blow dryer then he playfully poked a finger in Kaitlyn’s tummy and tickled her mercilessly for a few moments as Kaitlyn’s giggles filled the room. “All done!” he said, then he kissed her on the cheek and moved on to Kaitlyn’s sister Rosy. “Go see Mr. Gray,” he said to her as he left.

I led the naked girl to Lawrence Gray who was putting the final touches on Mrs. Tucker’s outfit. Like Kaitlyn her bare skin was adorned in snap dragons, but purple and blue instead of pink. She had a slight olive tint to her skin that was accentuated with a tan. Her large breasts seemed gravity defiant, but heavy, never the less, and were ringed with tan lines, leaving them fair, but still with their olive tint and capped with dark nipples that were large and seemingly swollen. Her buttocks and pubic area were likewise untanned and framed by hips that were slightly over wide on her tall frame. In front, the tan lines framed her dark, almost black pubic hair that was waxed on the sides and underneath, the hairless underside of her cleft just visible to anyone impolite enough to look… that would be me.

The gaussey material draped over her hips by Mr. Gray hid nothing at all, and was cut to be a sort of waist cape that parted in front and was cut to leave her pubes exposed and uncovered. A similar cape went over her shoulders, and was likewise cut to frame her exposed breasts. The material sported elaborate embroidery that mimicked the snap dragons painted on her flesh while accentuating and framing the portions of the designs covered by the material. The effect was spectacular. Slippers made of shiny gold cloth covered her feet.

Claudia Tucker regarded herself with an intensity before the free standing mirror as Lawrence Gray chewed on his thumbnail watching her.

Perfect,” She said, unsmiling. “You have outdone yourself, Mr. Gray.”

You approve, then, Madam Tucker?”

I do. Ah, my littlest garnish appears to be ready. Where is Fatima? Is she still on that infernal phone?”

Come hither, then, my lovely morsel!” said the Genius. With flare befitting a master showman, he flung a pale pink waist cape around Kaitlyn’s naked hips and fastened them to her. The material lacked the embroidery of Mrs. Tucker’s garment and was not lavender gray, but otherwise it was the exact same garment cut smaller for Kaitlyn’s size. Mr. Gray tickled Kaitlyn just enough to get her to smile for him as he worked.

I understand you interviewed Jakim Golguli, Miss Samantha,” Mrs. Tucker suddenly addressed me.

I hesitated, a little taken aback that she might have any interest in me at all, but managed to answer politely. “Yes, Mrs. Tucker, that’s true.”

I’m sorry I won’t have the opportunity to read it. He is something of a snake, that man. A very personable snake, but still, he slithers.”

He is that, Mrs. Tucker.”

What? A snake?”

Well, I found him to be very personable.”

Of course. I see you’ve become fond of young Kaitlyn. I can tell she is certainly fond of you.”

I do like her very much.”

Good,” Mrs. Tucker moved close and lowered her voice. “Her mother is gone and her sisters have little patience with her. Perhaps you would be kind enough to hold her hand when we have her prepared for dinner. Veal can be very flighty when it is frightened.” My face told her everything. “Oh, don’t look so shocked, young miss Samantha. Surely you’ve seen girls her age and even younger carted off to the butchers.”

I had. But till Friday night I’d never witnessed anyone so young being rendered. As it was, I’d never seen anyone rendered outside what I’d seen on film. It told her that.

Yes,” she sighed. “We’re so overprotective of our young in this day and age. The awakening to reality has become so shocking to them. But what am I to do? Her mother was a terrible disciplinarian. Their school grades are such that all three of them are destined for a butcher shop in Walnut Creek unless I save them from that fate, which I am doing. They simply do not have a future, Miss Samantha. And, I must say, I am also quite fond of little Kaitlyn. However, she has become enamoured of you more than anyone she’s met since she arrived. So I ask for your help to make her comfortable when it’s time.”

I forced a smile. In spite of her aloof manner, I truly believed her sincere.

Does she know?” I asked.

Oh, heavens no!” said Mrs. Tucker. “She will not, either, until it’s time. Excuse me, I see it is time to put my face on.”

I looked at Kaitlyn who was grinning giddily as she admired herself in the free standing mirror. It was all I could do not to burst into tears. I bit my lip and held them back.

What’s wrong?” Mom asked, her face already painted, making her naturally ethereal beauty completely unworldly.

I looked at her. “Kaitlyn’s on today’s menu,” I said simply.

Oh… oh no,” Mom said with deflated sadness.

She doesn’t know,” I said, still wanting to cry.

Mom looked me straight in the eye and nodded, took my hand and squeezed it again.

How do I look?” Kaitlyn bound up.

Like a fairy tale princes!” I managed. “You are so beautiful!”

Not as pretty as you!”

Rosy and June were suddenly there.

Goofy,” Rosy said. “Haven’t I told you not to show your buck teeth when you smile? You look like an ugly red rabbit. Smile with your lips closed!”

Kaitlyn’s face scrunched up and Mom took her hand.

Well, I think when you grin your smile looks spectacular! You know, being beautiful is not just about being pretty. When you have a sincere smile, like you do, it makes you breathtaking. Do you know what sincere means? It means true. So don’t ever stop. Alright?”

Kaitlyn’s look was priceless.

Are you an angel?” she asked Mom.

I’m Jessica,” she said as if it were a common question. “I’m Samantha’s Mommy.”

Whatever,” I heard June say under her breath. “I can’t believe we have to put up with this.” Kaitlyn’s two sisters turned away and joined Elsa Tucker, who’s company they seemed to prefer.

Jessica!” a breathless Mrs. Khan burst. “Oh, my goodness. He’s here! He’s come! He’ll be arriving soon!”

Who? Fatima, slow down, please! Now breath. Easy. Who’s here?”

My brother! Joseph! He came! I must speak with you!”

Fatima,” Mrs. Tucker said from her seat as the makeup artist worked. “The guests will be arriving soon, and you’re going to be needed to receive them. You still need to be touched up, made up and dressed. I’m sorry to be such a task master, but it is getting late.”

Mrs. Khan nodded. “Of course, Claudia. Of course.”

Anti!” Mr. Gray clapped his hands. “Come. Roberta can finish Miss Jenna. We need you here now!”

You got it, Boss!” Antoine excused himself from Jenna and rushed to obey. He had to coax Mrs. Khan out of her kimono just as he had Thursday evening.

She looks so scared,” Kaitlyn said.

She’s afraid of being naked,” I said.

Do I look that scared? I’m scared of being naked too…”

No, Honey. You don’t. But Mrs. Khan comes from a place that if a man sees you naked, you will get beaten terribly and cooked.”

Oh,” Kaitlyn said. “I’d be very scared then…”

Me too.”

Are you scared when your naked, even a little bit?”

I looked at her, and smiled. “Terrified.” It was true.

Me too.”

Meanwhile, Mr. Gray took the time to dress Mom in purple as Mrs. Khan received Antoine’s attentions. She spoke in hushed tones I could not make out, but her animated speech made it clear she thought it terribly important, exciting and difficult.

Mom’s purple outfit was made of the same type of material Mrs. Tucker and Kaitlyn wore. Like Mrs. Kaitlyn’s, it sported no embroidery at all. That was reserved for the mothers of the bride and groom. It consisted of a vest and pantaloons. The vest hung from a choker collar made of thick, soft ribbon with a brass ring that hung from the front. It had a frame and hung open to leave Mom’s beautiful chest on display. The pantaloons hung from a belt that fastened on each hip with a buckle, and were split sides all the way down to the elastic ankle hems. The waist band only came midway up Mom’s hip bone and left the top of her pubic mound bare as well as the cleavage of her buttocks.

With Mom’s adornments completed, Mrs. Khan took her place before Mr. Gray to receive her outfit. The differences between hers and Mom’s were only three. It was the same shade of Lavender Gray that Mrs. Tucker wore, the collar sported no ring, and it did sport elaborate embroidery that, like Mrs. Tucker’s, framed the designs on Mrs. Khan’s skin where the fabric covered them.

Oh, my goodness!” Mrs. Khan said as she looked at her backside in the mirror and saw her bottom cleavage uncovered. It just barely covered her pubic hair, but, of course that was completely visible. “What will Joseph think? He will think I’ve become a harlot!”

Fatima!” Mom said. “Focus. You were saying?”

Joseph managed to convince his master to allow him to come to Ashima’s wedding.”

Yes, you told me, now what was it you’re so worried about?”

His master’s son is coming with him.”


So? He is his master’s son! Joseph is Dhimmi, as all my family in Egypt is. That is almost, but not quite, a slave. I do not know this boy. But I do know his older brothers from when I was young. The Ahmed al Medina, who is Joseph’s master, has four wives and some twenty eight sons. The son is only twenty. He is Ali bin Ahmed al Medina. Ali has instructions to be at Joseph's side at all times, and not to let Joseph out of his sight! I must speak with Joseph alone, away from the ears and eyes of this boy! We have tried for many years to find a way to bring my family out of Egypt! But this is not possible without being able to talk to them. If I can speak with Joseph, there may be a chance!”

What if Ally is distracted?” asked Jenna, standing in only her dandelions as if it was all she ever wore.

Fatima Khan blinked.

If that is possible..? I do not know Ali. But his elder brothers are loathsome men! They think nothing of using a Dhimmi’s wife or daughters for their own pleasure. Who would distract such a man as that?”

Jenna raised her hand, then Gracie, then me, and so, by the way, did Kaitlyn.

Sounds like fun!” Jenna said, grinning evilly.

Mrs. Khan took Mom with her as Mrs. Tucker beckoned for Mrs. Khan to join her in the receiving line. The rest of us were to join as we were done. For some odd reason, I ended up standing around naked and ended up being the last one Mr. Gray dressed, with Kaitlyn still at my elbow. By the time Kaitlyn and I made it to the receiving line, about two thirds of the guests had already arrived. I looked out, and saw the groom and his grooms-men stood outside, while we girls stood on the green marble of the foyer and shook the hands of everyone arriving with the white gloves Miriam provided. Jake, in his white tuxedo and cummerbund over black slacks stood with Mr. Tucker, Daddy, Eric, a young man about Jake’s age I’d never met and… Jimmy?

So I missed a lot of whatever drama there had been. Mrs. Khan’s brother Joseph and his chaperone had already arrived. I overheard Fatima going on about how humiliated she was over the look of shock on Joseph’s face, and Ali bin Ahmed’s undisguised salacious leer. But she had a brave face on, never the less, maintaining the smile she’d learned from Mom. She continued to maintain that smile even as some of Mr. Khan’s female relatives spoke in clipped tones through gritted teeth in Hindi.

As expected, a few of the American women arrived wearing outfits almost as revealing as those we wore.

I know you’re face,” Mom said to a very pretty woman with burned auburn hair, smiling brown eyes and beautiful breasts bare under her open blazer.

If you read Playpen,” said Bernie Foss, who grinned like a schoolboy behind the smiling woman. “You very much should, Jessica. This is my lovely wife, Rachel. You’ll remember her as Rachel Inez Stravinsky…”

Miss March, 2212! And Miss 2213, Playmate of the Year! My God, I thought I’d be better than that!”

You have a great memory!” The woman blushed prettily. “Most people can’t place me. Even so called Playpen connoisseurs seem to forget. You’re right about Jessica honey! I thought you were kidding. Jessica, why were you never a playmate?”

Too busy making these three,” Mom beamed and introduced us with more pride than any of us deserved.

We must chat later, Jessica. It has been a pleasure finally meeting you!” Mrs. Foss said smiling broadly.

When all the guests were met and seated, the groom , looking as nervous as a virgin schoolgirl stumbled in with his five grooms-men and Mrs. Tucker took charge. First, she had her daughter Elsa show us how to walk: Left step, right match. Right Step, left match. The music will start, and we will begin the preliminary procession and take our places. Do not look anywhere but straight ahead! Jake was to escort Mrs. Tucker, his step mother, to her place of honour and Mr. Tucker would escort Mrs. Khan to hers. The five grooms-men would follow Mrs. Tucker’s entourage and they would be followed by Mrs. Khan and her entourage. Mrs. Tucker would go right, Mrs. Khan, to the left. We would stand by our pillows which will be coloured exactly the same colour as our outfits and stand next to them until we see Mrs. Tucker motion for us to kneel, not flop! But kneel upon them.

When the bride appears,” Mrs. Tucker went on. “You will be positioned to see her without standing. The guests are to stand. You are absolutely to remain seated. The mothers do not stand for their children. Your eyes are to go to Ashima and remain on Ashima till the end of the wedding vows. Ashima and Jake will move down the isle, please don’t make it a race, Jake. You may hurry, but don’t run, it will be unseemly. They will go to the Dance Floor which, by that time, will be laid out on the terrace, and Mrs. Khan and I will be escorted by our entourages to watch. Mrs. Khan and hers will lead me and mine. There, we will watch the first dance where Bride and Groom will dance for several bars, the Grooms-men and Maids will join them and then the guests will join them as well. Then you may mingle as you please till it is time for the wedding banquet, which will be served at about four o’clock. Are there any questions?”

Miriam, who was now dressed in a shimmering black and white lace maid’s uniform took all our gloves and stood at the French doors to the grand terrace, where she would keep time and tell each group when to start their journey.

All eyes were on us as we passed. On the left were the Indians, Christian, Hindi, Sikh and one or two Arabs mixed in. Their faces tended to be blank with wide eyed stares. I could not help it, I did managed to notice at least a few smiles among the two hundred fifty foreign guests. On our right, the Americans, or mostly Americans, all smiles, be they serene, broad or goofy grins, their faces were bright and cheerful. But we were still mostly naked and they were still fondling each of us with their eyes.

The music was Pachelbel’s Cannon in D Minor with the Trans Siberian “Christmas Cannon” tune overlaid. The words had been adapted for the wedding, but its effect the same. It was a beautiful piece of music that completely fit as a march for the wedding party. I did manage to make my feet do what Mrs. Tucker ordered. I was the very last in line and I don’t think anyone saw me. Keeping my eyes straight ahead, however, was far more difficult, and they might have done, maybe a little lateral drift…

As ordered, our party went left where we all found our pillows surrounding Mrs. Khan’s gray, embroidered pillow. I was behind Mrs. Khan and to her left with Jenna next to me. Mom was, of course, on Mrs. Khan’s right with Gracie, the eldest daughter by two days, on her left. As the Groom left his mother, he took his place next to his best man, which was Daddy. That still tickles me a bit that Daddy was best man at this wedding. The music was ending, and Mrs. Tucker motioned us all to kneel, which we all did as gracefully as we could.

As Mrs. Tucker had stated, we were in just the right position to see all the way down the isle between the guests when they stood. The bride emerged from the house in her obligatory white with white bouquet. She glided across the grand terrace escorted by Mr. Khan, who’s tuxedo was black with a red cummerbund. Ashima looked radiant. She also looked frightened under that radiance. I wondered how she was taking the looks from her relatives and felt for her. She wore the same gold slippers we all wore, but the similarities ended there. Her white sari and white veil were made of very fine white lace that was as transparent as our own costumes. She wore nothing at all beneath the sari, and the fact that her yani, her pubic mound, had been depilated to bare skin was plain for all to see. To us, that was what we expected. We west coast types tend to find pubic hair distasteful. But to Ashima’s relatives, it would be another matter completely. It was yet another layer of wanton nakedness on Ashima’s part, and any self respecting Kshatrya would be humiliated to be forced to shave.

The five bridesmaids that followed Ashima wore identical saris and veils of powder blue with blue hyacinth bouquets. Two were Indians, both exotically beautiful. One had the most silky, black hair I’d ever seen. The other had dark hair that looked very like my own. The three Caucasians, I remembered, would be Ashima’s friends from school in England. Two redheads and a blonde. I had yet to meet anyone from England and I did noticed they were almost as exotic looking to me as Ashima and her Indian bridesmaids.

The ceremony was performed by the Abbot of the local Episcopal church through a microphone he wore. We could all hear the nervous voices of the Bride and Groom taking their vows.

You may kiss the bride,” the Abbot said, and as Jake and Ashima kissed, the natives on the right erupted into applause and cheers. Those imported guests on the left took the hint and did likewise with considerably more reserve.

The newly weds trotted under raining rice back to the grand terrace where a dance floor had been rolled out, the rest of us followed not quite as organized as Mrs. Tucker would have liked, to watch the first dance. Fatima could not stop weeping. When they had danced to the Blue Danube Waltz, Ashima and Jake both came to console her.

May I have this dance?” someone asked me.

Mr. DeSilva!” I said, surprised, almost shocked to see his face here.

Johnny, please, Samantha. Shall we?”

He was a good dancer. Possibly the Michael’s equal. He spun me twice before he addressed me again.

You show up in the most interesting places,” he said with his dangerous looking smile. “If I didn’t know better, and maybe I don’t, that would make you a little dangerous.”

My father works for Jake Tucker,” I said. “Daddy was Jake’s best man.”

I see,” he continued his wolfish smile. “I guess I know now what those floral designs were for. I was more than a little curious when I noticed them on Friday.”

I rolled my eyes. “You never did say anything. All you had to do was ask.”

I enjoyed the mystery.”

What brings you here, Mr. … Johnny?”

My own father and Martin Tucker go way back. He couldn’t make it. He lives in São Paolo, Brazil. So I came to pay my respects,” he paused. “I liked that little piece you wrote on the club. You did us proud, so I guess I owe you my thanks.”

I was inspired by a little muse,” I said, thinking of Danny.

I see,” he frowned. “But thank you all the same.”

You’re welcome.”

He dipped me, then spun me and flung me back into his arms.

I got a call from Michael on Saturday morning.”

How is he?”

He was angry, and made that quite clear. He tells me I better keep Mr. Crack and my other associates off of you. Having had not one clue what he was talking about, I called Mr. Crack. It seems he told you to give me a message which you failed to deliver.”

It wasn’t my business.”

Is that so?”

No, it was not,” I said. “And Michael said he’d take care of it.”

Did he, now? Well, Michael, not his real name, by the way, did no such thing. You should know you’re not the first pretty girl to fall under Michael’s spell, and you certainly won’t be the last. How is our mutual friend the good congressman?”

I have no idea what you’re talking about.”

You’re a gifted liar, Miss Wells. I suppose that’ll serve you well in your chosen profession, assuming you live long enough to make a name for yourself.”

What do you want from me, Mr. DeSilva?”

Just this: you asked Martha Carrington for contact information for Marcus Jackson. I want to know exactly what you told Jackson. Play it straight with me and we can be friends again. Believe me Samantha; you want me as a friend.”

Johnny!” Mr. Tucker said jovially. “Good of you to come! How is your father?”

Johnny stopped dancing and stood holding me as if we were going to start right back up. There was a slightly timid look on his face that made him pathetic.

He’s well, sir,” Johnny smiled at the older man. “Still in Brazil, as you know, making a mess of things.”

Well, give him my best. And Carmine; how is your grandfather?”

I spoke with him this morning. He sends his regards and congratulations, of course. I’m sure he’ll be in touch with you at some point.”

I see you’ve met the intrepid Samantha Wells.”

Oh, yes. We’re old friends.”

Are you? Glad to see that. She’s a new friend of mine, and I’d like to get to know her better. So do you mind if I cut in?”

Johnny flinched, I could feel it, and he gave me a look that said something like ‘I’ll get you later’ but did let his arms slip off me.

Not at all,” Johnny said. “Miss Samantha,” he smiled and glided away as Martin Tucker replaced him and took me in his arms.

I was completely under the man’s command. If Michael and Johnny were good dancers, Martin Tucker was highly skilled. We glided across the dance floor and he twirled me and caught me again as if I were completely weightless and a mere extension of his arms.

You keep interesting company,” he finally said. “How do you know Johnny DeSilva?”

I only met him on Friday,” I told him. “He’s seeing a friend of mine romantically and he took us to his club.”

You went to Tropicana Blue? Your parents let you go there?”

Oh… I didn’t exactly tell them… it was a spur of the moment thing… But I did review the club for the Herald.”

I see,” the way he looked at me gave me the distinct impression he would not be trusting me any time soon. Had I made another enemy? I felt my heart begin to sink…

Ashima thinks very highly of your professional abilities,” he told me. “And her mother is completely bewitched by you and your sisters. Jake as well, and I’ve never known Jake to be naïve. I may have to rethink that.”

They’ve all been very kind to me and to my family. And I really do enjoy working with Ashima. She’s very energetic. She keeps me on my toes.”

She is that, I’ll agree. Naïve, though. I’ve seen enough evidence of it to know it to be true. But she’s still very young. I’m supposing she’ll learn. If not, Jake will make sure she’s well protected from those who would abuse her trust. I have a vested interest, you know. I’m one of the primary investors in the magazine venture. We’re currently discussing opening a Playpen Resort in India on the coast somewhere. What do you think of that idea?”

I’d be cautious,” I said. “You’re sure to get opposition from the conservatives.”

Like Jakim Golguli?”

And others. He’s not the only opposition leader.”

Very well, I’ll keep that in mind. But I was actually asking for your personal opinion. Do you think it’s a good idea?”

I can’t have one, Mr. Tucker. I’ve never been to India so I have no idea what the people there are really like, or how they’ll react. Wouldn’t Mr. or Mrs. Khan offer you better insight?”

His expression screamed exasperation, as if I was somehow being dishonest with him.

I’m hoping to be a professional reporter, Mr. Tucker. My teachers are constantly reminding me that I should only deal with facts I know to be true, and not on supposition. I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful.”

He nodded. “That’s fair enough. I suppose that’s what makes you such a competent interviewer.”

Thank you,” I said, accepting the complement. The song ended and we applauded the band.

I enjoyed the dance, Miss Samantha.”

Thank you for rescuing me, sir,” I said as he escorted me off the dance floor.”

Did I?”

I smiled. “You did,” I said, and you know it, I almost added.

The pleasure was all mine.”

When I was alone again, I looked around and saw no one I knew. Then a couple moved from their position in front of the tables that had been set up where the wedding chairs had once been to reveal Kaitlyn sitting all by herself looking very mopey.

Hasn’t anyone asked you to dance?” I asked her.

No,” she said. “They’re all too big, I guess.”

Well, I’m short, so will you dance with me?”


I took her onto the floor and I lead. In my basic dance class, which was part of P.E. during middle school and my freshman class as well, every girl at Franklin gets to learn. We even got some of the boys, though they were so very reluctant, to attend the class. But as the ratio of boys to girls at that age is well over ten to one, we all had to learn to lead or we’d never have partners to practice with. I’m a complete novice when it comes to leading, maybe reasonably competent. Following I’m good if I have a competent partner, and someone like Mr. Tucker can actually make me look good. But Kaitlyn was completely unschooled. What she lacked in skill, she made up for in enthusiasm. By the third song, we were having a great deal of fun and receiving a lot of friendly looks and smiles from the other couples on the dance floor.

Of course, we were the only female only couple on the dance floor. At that time it was only acceptable because of Kaitlyn’s age. If we were closer in age, it occurred to me that I’d be identified as a bisexual… which I already knew I was, or worse, a lesbian. I was very much aware of this, and quite thankful that people were smiling at us. Even the Indians seemed to appreciate our company as we danced.

Tired after a set of five songs, we took a breather at the tables. Miriam appeared in her fancy maid’s outfit with a tray and two drinks. A Vanilla flavoured Doe Shake for me and for Kaitlyn, something else.

Drink it slowly,” Miriam said. “It’ll keep you from getting hungry, but only sip it! Alright, honey? And make sure you drink water after you’re done with it as well, okay? Samantha, will you make sure she keeps hydrated?”

It’s good!” Kaitlyn said, having sipped some. “Wanna try?”

I sipped the offered drink and found it tangy and sweet with a flavour I could not recognize. It was, however, very good and I did wonder what it was… hunger suppressant? Pain Inhibitor? I guessed the latter, as I saw no reason why they’d want to keep Kaitlyn from being hungry.

Young Miss!” a very handsome young Sikh in an expensive wool tuxedo bowed his bearded and turbaned head to us, a hand on the ornate knife at his belt. “Allow me to introduce myself. I am Ikam Attariwala, third cousin, twice removed of my kinsman Sanjay Khan. May I ask your name?”

I’m Samantha, and this is Kaitlyn,” I said, smiling.

Miss Samantha, Miss Kaitlyn, I am very pleased to make your acquaintance. This is my first time in America, and forgive me if I am unfamiliar with your customs. But I have gazed at your beauty from afar, and I can bear no more of it. I must know you. Would you honour me with a dance?” He offered his hand.

I turned to Kaitlyn, not wanting to leave her.

I promise not to step on your lovely feet,” Mr. Attariwala said.

You should go!” Kaitlyn said with her infectious enthusiasm. “He looks very nice.”

I was not exactly sure I wanted to go, but how does one refuse a girl like Kaitlyn? I could not. I took Mr. Attariwala’s offered hand and let him help me out of my chair.

He was perhaps the equal of Johnny DeSilva on the dance floor, but he made no elaborate moves on me.

Samantha, is it? From Samuel. It is a name someone might try to find in the ancient Jewish scripture, but it is not to be found there.”

Is that so?”

It is. It is, in fact, an American invention. From Samuel, of course, but with the appendage of Anthos, which means “Flower” in Greek. It is first known to have been used in America shortly before the American War of Independence. And a most lovely invention it is.”

You study names?”

I am a man of many interests, Miss Samantha. As of now, you are foremost among them.”

I smiled at him, feeling quite amused at his flowery speech. “And what can I do to help satisfy that interest?” Who did I think I was; Lizzy Bennett?

Perhaps, Miss Samantha, you might trust me enough to tell me if it is true that you are, in fact, one of the bed slaves of my cousin’s fair wife, Fatima.”

I’m quite sure my jaw dropped. No, this conversation you won’t find in a Jane Austen novel. I knew from reading some of Jakim Golguli’s texts what a “bed slave” was. She was a young woman, usually, or even a girl who’s sole function was to warm the bed of a wealthy man’s wife, to keep her happy, and if unhappy, from straying. Any failure was severely punished, and if the husband was cuckold, the bed slave would be culled with the wife.

Bed slaves would be illegal in this country, Mr. Attariwala,” I told him. “Sexual intimacy between women tends to end badly for both…”

Ah, of course. I had forgot that I read this. American custom forbids these things,” Mr. Attariwala said. “However, I am also aware that this custom is sometimes ignored in certain circles. Perhaps you are too young to have learned this, or perhaps you are merely being discreet to protect your mistress. Both are understandable. And, as I can see, and as can all others see, you do wear the brass ring.”

Brass ring?”

It is the mark of an honoured bed slave to wear a brass ring on her collar. To mark a woman with it means a wife prizes her slave’s company greatly. I have notices all of Fatima Khan’s attendants wore the brass ring. To have four such slaves makes a wife truly blessed.”

I opened my mouth to reply, but took a moment to absorb what he told me. I certainly would have to research this further as there seemed to be something of an etiquette to it I was completely ignorant of. Later I’d find out how right I was about my ignorance.

My mother and Mrs. Khan are very close friends,” I told Mr. Attariwala. “I hope that I am as well. As to our relationship… I’ll let Mrs. Khan tell you as much as she will.” I added the last to be diplomatic and hoped that Mrs. Khan did not have a streak of vanity that would cause her lie about such things. I was quite sure she did not.

This is very pleasing to my ears,” Mr. Attariwala said. “Then, I should approach both her and your father for their consent.”

Consent for what?”

It is my intention to as your family for your hand in marriage. I can think of nothing I want more than for you to be my wife.”

I felt blood draining out of my face, and I stammered something incoherent that… well, it was incoherent.

Sammie!” Gracie’s voice could not have been sweeter in my ears than at that moment. “I’m sorry to interrupt, but we kinda need you.”

Ah! Another of Fatima Khan’s attendants. May I know your name?”

Mr. Attariwala, this is my sister, Grace Wells. Grace, this is Ikam Attariwala. Are you from Punjab, Mr. Attariwala or from India?”

I divide my time between Amritsar in Punjab and Kolkata in Eastern India. I am pleased to meet you, Miss Grace. I must say, it is a blessing to find such beauty in a single family. Were the other young women in Mrs. Khan’s party also your sisters?”

One was my Mom,” Grace said. “The one that looks like Sam, or Sam looks like her. That’s her over there. Jessica is her name. Jenna… she’s… off over there somewhere. She’s our other sister.”

Beautiful. As are you, Miss Grace.” Mr. Attariwala said, causing Gracie blushed down her front to her navel. “I am very pleased to meet you, my future sister. But I see you have urgent business, and I will not keep you from it. I will await its completion, Miss Samantha.”

I smiled at him, feeling a mixture of awe, excitement, flattery and embarrassment. I took Gracie’s hand and hurried to make my escape.

What’s up?” I asked her.

Jenna and I were trying to talk with Joseph Nidal, Fatima’s brother, and, you know, get this Ali guy talking too… but he’s being very rude and won’t talk to us. We need your help!”

Let’s get Kaitlyn first,” I said.

Okay. Where does he get off calling me his future sister?”

Oh, he wants to marry me…”


We collected Kaitlyn, who had been watching my dance with Mr. Attariwala and wanted to hear all about the man. I told her “later, we’ve got an important fish to fry first…” I think I said it more assertively than I felt.

We found Jenna speaking with one of two men identically dressed in black tuxedoes and red cummerbunds. The same outfit Sanjay Khan wore. The one Jenna spoke with was a ruggedly handsome middle eastern man of perhaps forty years. His face was clean shaven and his hair buzzed short. The other stood with his arms crossed and was also middle eastern, but with a face that was too fleshy, his hair had too much Brylcreem in it and he had the dark shadow of a fuzzy moustache whose hair was too short to trim over his upper lip. I knew I wasn’t going to like him on sight, and that’s rare for me. Ali bin Ahmed al Medina’s body language screamed boredom and contempt. He was not happy to be here.

I slowed way down as we approached, and signalled Gracie to do likewise.

Hi!” I said to Ali bin Ahmed as I strolled past him with Kaitlyn’s hand in mine. We both smiled, and he eyed us, his eyes peered over his fleshy cheeks to ogle our bodies. “I’m Samantha Wells. This is my friend Kaitlyn. What’s your name?”

I am Ali bin Ahmed al Medina. That means I am Ali, son of Ahmed of Medina,” he said in a voice too high pitched to be male. His tone was as arrogant as it was unfriendly. “And I am very busy at this time. Far to busy to speak with you.”

You don’t look busy, Mr. Ali? Or do I call you Mr. al Medina?”

The proper term would be to call me not at all. But if you insist, you may address me as Mr. bin Ahmed, to honour my father.”

Are you from India, Mr. bin Ahmed?” Kaitlyn, bless her, asked.

I am not,” Mr. bin Ahmed said. “I am a citizen of Egypt, but my family is Arabian from the city of Medina.”

Really! Arabia’s mostly desert, isn’t it? I’d love to see it some day.”

They would not let such as you into Arabia. No infidel has defiled our holy land for over one hundred years! And none will for another thousand years.”

Maybe you could go to Egypt,” Kaitlyn said. “I know about Egypt. That’s where they have the sphinx! Have you seen the sphinx, sir?”

I assure you, I have. Now please leave me. I am far to busy to give my time to naked little girls who flaunt their bodies like wanton whores.”

What’s a hoor?” Kaitlyn asked me.

It is a dirty woman,” said Ali bin Ahmed. “A woman who entices men so as to defile them and give their souls to demons in adulterous perversion. The people of the book fall pray to them as a matter of course. Only the faithful to Allah are immune and exempt from their despicable ways!”

Kaitlyn looked up at me, confused. I smiled down at her, and Jenna and Joseph gave me an amused look. Something told me I’d like Joseph.

Truly, I tell you,” He addressed Kaitlyn. “All one must do is look at her! What is to stop me from groping her, putting my hands on her body and taking her for my own use! I could poses her now, as Allah command me to do if I wish. What is to stop me? Her sin is that she entices, and her punishment would be to submit to me! What could stop me?”

I would hope you’re piety would,” I said.

You are not of Allah! I may take you with my left hand and have you with my right. Only you are condemned to burn for it. You are a whore, as is your sister!”

And a virgin too!” I said, grabbing Gracie’s hand in my free one.

I do not believe you are a virgin!”

No, but Gracie is!”

Ikam Attariwala was now at our side and gave me a sad look.”

You are not a virgin?”

No, Mr. Attariwala. I’m sorry.”

Most unfortunate,” he said, then turned to the Muslim. “But I tell you, friend. This girl is no whore. Miss Samantha is a most gracious woman, and I believe she is pure of heart, though she is not a virgin.”

I see you, as all idolitors, are easily taken in by what is so obviously a demonic temptation. Have a care, my friend. Come to Allah and know the truth of his will. It will surely open your eyes.”

Jenna had slipped away with Joseph as the two men spoke, and were now on the Dance floor. There the two danced, poor Joseph, who was obviously unsure of himself, almost stepped on Jenna’s feet several times before Mr. and Mrs. Khan moved near, and they switch partners. Mr. Khan kept his back to us while Mrs. Khan took Joseph away out of sight.

Do you dance, Mr. Ali?” Gracie asked then.

I should not, of course,” Ali bin Ahmed said. “I am busy, you see. Where did he go?”

Oh, please,” Gracie took his attention back. “How can you learn to insult me better if you don’t know me well enough? Come on, let me teach you some better methods of cutting a girl down to size!”

The young man was flabbergasted by the look of him and I almost laughed out loud, but Gracie was towing him away and he was not so reluctantly following.

You are assisting my good cousin’s wife, I see,” Mr. Attariwala said. “Very good. This pleases me greatly.”

Thank you, Mr. Attariwala,” I said.

It is you I should thank. My fair cousin’s wife is most loved in our family. I shall make it my mission to see she remains in such high esteem upon my return. Her public nakedness shall certainly cause talk that I should not let affect her stature. And I shall also speak of this to my relatives back home. You must all be praised for your efforts and kindnesses.”

Don’t forget Kaitlyn.”

How could I forget such a lovely child. I shall not,” he said and Kaitlyn favoured him with her pretty front teeth.

I’m getting that about Mrs. Khan’s relatives. They seem a little angry with her.”

Aunt Keira is certainly not pleased. She is Hindu and married to a Brahman, and has ascended in stature from her original caste. Only a short two centuries ago this would have been unacceptable. It is also unacceptable for me to marry a woman who is not a virgin… is it true you are not?”

It is,” I said.

His face seemed to drop and lose all hope.

And this is known?”

Yes. Jake Tucker and Mrs. Khan both know. I think Ashima does as well.”

This is most unfortunate. I am so sorry, Miss Samantha. My family would disown me and I would never be able to support a wife, no matter how I loved her, if that happened. I am afraid I must withdraw my proposal to you, though it pains me deeply to do so.”

God I wanted to sigh with relief! But he was genuinely heart broken by the look on his face, and being that cruel is simply not in me. I put on my best disappointed look.

I’m so sorry, Mr. Attariwala,” I said. “But can we still be friends?”

It would be my deepest honour to call you my friend, Miss Samantha.”

I sighed with relief, finally, after he moved away to sulk. Poor thing. And poor Gracie! She endured five songs, some twenty five minutes of insults and the octopus arms of Ali bin Ahmed al Medina. The man couldn’t seem to keep his hands off Gracie’s boobs and butt.

I felt like a secret agent!” Gracie told me later that night.

You kinda were…” I said back.

Ali found Joseph chatting with Jenna at the bar, finally. He’d been frantically searching for Ali for ten minutes, looking as if his life was over as he’d lost the family fortune. That Mr. and Mrs. Khan had had the required private meeting with Joseph, he never knew.

What’s wrong, Kaitlyn?” I asked the girl when I saw her queezy look.

My tummy feels all squirmy and tingly…”

I put my hand over her belly and, though it was ever so slight, it did feel like there might be something moving in there under her skin. She put her hand over mine and pressed… There was relieve on her face.

"Does that make it feel any better, sweetheart?" I asked. Kaitlyn looked me straight in the eye and nodded, with just a hint of a smile as if trying to say she was going to be okay, but could not bring herself to do so. She kept the pressure on my hand, and I kept the pressure on her restless tummy.

"They're going to cook me today, aren't they," Kaitlyn said. It was not a question so much as a declaration of fact.

"How do you know?" I asked, feeling even more guilty for issuing any pretence of ignorance at this adorable thing. I was complicit. It was as if I had helped plan it from the beginning.

"June told me," Kaitlyn said. "She and Rosy don't think it's fair that they were going to be cooked and I was still being annoying… at least that's what they said. So I'm cooking too. It's true, isn't it?"

My eyes were wet as I tried to come up with a well worded answer, but in the end I could only nod.

"Are you being nice to me just because they're going to cook me?"

"Oh, Honey, God no! Sweetheart! I liked you much before I knew! When Mrs. Tucker told me… I like you! I like you a lot! I think I even love you!"

Kaitlyn threw her arms around my neck and covered my face in kisses as if I'd given her a pony.

"I love you too!" She wept. "I love you too! I knew you were different! I knew!"

I held her, her scent filled my senses as she clung to me. I would have kissed her then and there, God knows I wanted to give her the same kiss I gave Danny… I was very much aware of my sensitive breasts and nipples pressed against her bare skin, and I ached to. But everyone was watching us. I was afraid to. God help me, I was too afraid to.

"We should get you some water," her tears wetting my cheek reminded me of Miriam's instruction. "You should be thirsty by now, are you?"

"Kinda," Kaitlyn nodded against my cheek.

"Come on," I said, and I took her by the hand, and we made our way toward the bar.

As we crossed the distance to our destination, which stood at the left side of the Grand Terrace as one came out of the main house, I was very surprised to see Mom dancing with a woman! And hers was not the only female couple on the floor, there were three others. Her partner was Mrs. Foss and the two were chatting with animation and expressive reception as their breasts rubbed against each other. Mrs. Foss held Mom quite close, and I felt just a hint, not a lot, but a hint of jealousy. Of the other three couples, one was an American woman dancing with an Indian woman, and they were all quite conservatively dressed for the occasion.

I did notice Johnny DeSilva glaring back at us from the far side of the dance floor. His eyes followed as we made our way and he sipped whatever he was drinking.

At the Bar we found Mrs. Tucker speaking with two other women. One of them was tall, in a red dress with gold and silver chains around her neck, wrists and hanging from her earlobes. The other one was shorter, but still with a few inches on me, in a navy blue dress and pearls. Both wore salt and pepper hair, and their very attractive faces had more lines on them than I normally saw on women.

I turned to the woman at the bar and ordered two waters, which she promptly produced in tall, chilled glasses.

"… and Miriam did try to have Martin's shop cleaned," Mrs. Tucker was telling her companions. "But he went completely berserk over any such notion! I'd never seen him so angry. I do wish he would do something about that shop, however. The sawdust is surely a fire hazard! And he tracks it all over the house!"

"Men are so terribly absent minded when it comes to things involving tools, Claudia," said the woman in blue and pearls. "If my Chester had his way he'd be in Martin's shop right now trying out each and every one of Martin's tools to figure out what it does and how best to use it…"

"Oh! Samantha! Do come here, please! This is Samantha wells," Mrs. Tucker said to her friends. "I'm afraid our little Kaitlyn has put a claim on Samantha to be her very own. I hope you know you belong to Kaitlyn, Samantha."

"I'm happy to belong to her, Mrs. Tucker."

"How very gracious. Samantha is an aspiring reporter, you see. She has social skills, as a result, that most girls of fifteen have not even thought of yet. She even recently interviewed a very important Indian Politician named Jakim Golguli."

"Well! That's quite a coup," said the woman in red. "Jakim Golguli is more than just an important politician. Some believe he may be India's next president." I knew different, but I said nothing. "Say, are you the same girl that interviewed Congresswoman Sanchez about three weeks ago?"

"I did," I said. "It ran three weeks ago, about…"

"Interesting!" Mrs. Tucker. "I had no idea you were that same person. Perhaps I should not have characterized you as 'aspiring' at all. Oh, dear! How rude of me. Samantha, these are two of my very closest friends: Mrs. Georgia Monroe and Mrs. Elizabeth Finney. Both of them are from New Jersey, and both of them are lucky enough to have become grandmothers several times over. And yes, Miss Samantha. Both of them are over forty. But I hope you're aware it is impolite to ask."

I smiled, and hypothesized that they were into their fifties, probably fifteen or so years Claudia Tucker's senior.

"Pleased to meet you both," I said. "I guess you already know Kaitlyn?"

"We do," Mrs. Finney said, favouring Kaitlyn with a smile. "Young Miss Kaitlyn has managed to give us a run for our money in our bridge games since we've been here. She's quite good at it."

"I used to play cribbage with my Mom."

"Let us not forget that both of Kaitlyn's sisters are also quite competent," Mrs. Monroe said.

"So you're both from New Jersey?" I asked.

"How did you know?" asked Mrs. Monroe.

"It's one of two states that allow a woman to live past forty four," I repeated verbatim what Carmen Sanchez had told me last summer.

"How did you know we're not under forty four?" Mrs. Monroe asked suspiciously.

"Mrs. Tucker said you were both grandmothers several times over. I believe that precludes you're being under that age, and that would put you in New Jersey or Georgia."

"It's true, Dear," Said Mrs. Finney, who was one of those people that I instantly liked and somehow knew I could get along with. "We're both from Trenton."

"Mr. Finney is a financier in Trenton. He's heavily invested in Tucker-Kline stock," Mrs. Tucker said. "Mr. Monroe is a diplomat with the State Dept. Both of them are what I like to call 'Social Strategists' and they use the game of bridge to practice it."

"You make us sound so subversive, Claudia!" Mrs. Monroe complained.

"I count myself in that category, Georgia… never fear," Mrs. Tucker replied.

"Anyway," Mrs. Finney said. "Kaitlyn, we'll be parting company, and I want you to know I truly enjoyed yours."

"Thank you, Mrs. Finney!" Kaitlyn smiled and went to hug her. Mrs. Monroe offered no such affection for Kaitlyn, and I wondered why."

"It is a pity you won't make the annual tournament at the country club, Claudia," Mrs. Monroe said. "Somehow I think Martin might have planned it that way. He seems to hate New Jersey."

"Oh, he likes it well enough," Mrs. Tucker said. "What he hates is to leave his shop. It's as if it were a security blanket." Mrs. Monroe and Mrs. Tucker laughed at that private joke as Mrs. Finney was still saying her goodbye to Kaitlyn.

"Oh," Mrs. Tucker looked at her watch. "It is getting near that time, and I think an early start might be called for in the event of any… issues. Samantha, could you and Kaitlyn go find Miriam in the Kitchen and tell her it's time to put things in order for the banquet?"

I swallowed hard as a chill was going up my and down my spine and I started to tremble as if I'd had too much coffee. It was time…

"It was very nice to meet you both, Mrs. Monroe, Mrs. Finney," I said.

"Perhaps we shall meet again, Dear," Mrs. Finney said. "She's such a friendly girl! Very bright for one so young… She reminds me a bit of my daughter Martha, though Martha was a bit of a pill at fifteen…"

I led Kaitlyn awe with no idea where the kitchen was.

"You're going the wrong way," Kaitlyn said. "It's this way."

"Oh… okay!"

So I let her lead me by the hand through one of the many sets of French doors that line the Grand Terrace. Inside there was what looked like a small cafeteria, though it was far more ornate than any cafeteria I'd ever seen. The small four person tables and matching chairs were made of finely crafted mahogany, with matching chair rail on the walls over wood panelling with fine wall paper above. The overhead lighting was not florescent, but incandescent, which gave warmth. A serving window with suspended heat lamps above it revealed a kitchen beyond with what looked like an army of cooks bustling about hurriedly.

Kaitlyn led me through a side access into a wide hallway with several staircases and adjoining halls. As we reached the swinging door to the kitchen, I stopped her.

"What's wrong?" she asked.

I stared at the door. Beyond it, there was no going back. I couldn't let her go through it without showing her I loved her. I led her down the hall that grew progressively darker the further we went, and up a few steps of the last staircase that led up. There, I sat down, and drew her to me, and caressed her face.

"I don't want you to go," I whispered, then I hugged her.

"It's okay, Samantha. I'll see you again! Mommy says so! She's going to meet me in heaven and we'll make a place just for you if you want to come see us!"

I sobbed once at her last, then God help me, I sobbed again. I drew her away, and met her lips with my own. I kissed her tenderly, just as I kissed Danny. I drank in her sweet flavour as I poured as much love into her as I had to give. Then I held her for a time.

"I love you, Samantha," she said. "Please believe me!"

"I do," I said. "And I love you too…"

"It's time to go… Mrs. Tucker will be mad if we're too late…"

I nodded. She was right, of course. We composed ourselves and made our way back to the swinging doors, paused, then pushed our way in.

Inside there was even more bustle than I first noticed. Two bearded cooks and a dozen young female assistants hurried too and fro carrying such and such, stirring this, checking that. All had paper chef's hats on, and all wore thing length white smocks that had "Fleischer Catering" embroidered in red on the left breast.

The kitchen itself was massive. The counters and all the appliances were stainless steel with stark white cabinets and walls. The overhead lighting was harsh florescent tubes and the workers stood on a black rubber floor that covered the expansive floor space.

That space was taken up by five of Eric's cradles! They sat on gurneys and six foot stainless steel trays that were oval. At second glance, I noticed they were not trays at all. In them, they had burners and each gurney had a propane tank attached to it. One of those, I finally notice, was not six feet, but smaller. Small enough for veal. For Kaitlyn. The cradle that sat on it was identical to the others, only miniaturized, and looking as medieval as Antoine had said it looked, complete with rectal probe and vibrating vaginal probe.

"Oh!" I heard Miriam's voice. "There you are! Hello, Miss Samantha! Hello, Darling? How are you feeling?" She said as she knelt down to Kaitlyn's eye level.

"I'm okay," Kaitlyn said. "My tummy's a little funny… it's tingling a lot…"

"We're going to make that go away, okay?"

"It's okay, Miss Miriam. I know."

"You know?"

"Yes. You're going to cook me. I know, and it's okay."

Miriam met my eyes with her own, a look of guilt in them.

"We need to get you cleaned up, okay?"

Kaitlyn nodded, and Miriam unfastened the collar of her cloak, drawing it off, then did the same for her waist cape, and draped both over her left forearm. She led the now completely naked eleven year old girl to a six foot stainless steel preparation table that was very high for any table. The surface of it was above my naval.

"Hop up!" Miriam said, then turned to me. "Thank you, Miss Samantha, I'll take care of Kaitlyn from here."

"Nooo!" Kaitlyn protested. "Please stay, Samantha! Please!" She was pleading as one condemned pleads for her life. Miriam turned to me at Kaitlyn's words with a question on her face.

"I really don't what to leave her," I uttered pathetically, and Miriam nodded to me with a little smile.

"Alright," Miriam said, then to Kaitlyn. "Up on the table and onto your tummy. We need to get you washed up."

"Can Samantha wash me?" Kaitlyn asked.

"I will if it's okay," I said.

"I don't see why not," Miriam said. "Though I suggest you strip off your things, the sanitizer has very little bleach in it, but it is enough to ruin your outfit."

Kaitlyn jumped up with Miriam's hands on her hips to help her and planted her fleshy little bottom onto the table, then went to lay down face down."

"Wait a minute!" one of the bearded chefs called. "She's not one of the ones on the menu, is she?"

"No," Miriam said.

"If she's going to be naked in her, you have to give her an enema and a douche just like the does being culled. She's with the little girl, I take it?"

"Yes, Craig. This is Samantha. Samantha, this is Craig Fleischer."

Up close I could tell he was older than I thought. Possibly in his fifties. He had a ruddy complexion and deep set hazel eyes that were all business.

"Yeah," Craig said. "It's okay if she does this, but we have to follow the rules here, or I could lose my license, and I certainly can't afford that."

Kaitlyn lay on her tummy with my hand under it to keep pressure on while we waited for Miriam to fetch the enema machine… excuse me, Enema Master™ Portable. Ever since Enema Master™ became the sponsor of Jenna's Dish, she's a veritable Nazi about me using the trade mark.

I petted Kaitlyn's hair with my free hand, as Miriam arrived.

"Get undressed, then," Miriam said. I unfastened the pantaloons and dropped them to the floor, then unhooked the chocker collar from which my vest hung, and handed both to Miriam, who hung them up.

I leaned over the table to give Miriam access to my nethers while still keeping pressure on Kaitlyn's tummy. She had rolled onto her side and was holding onto me as Miriam slid the lubricated probe into me vaginally and felt the jets fill and wash my vagina with warm water, then suck it back out again. That was not so bad. It was actually quite pleasant. I felt clean inside suddenly as if I'd never felt clean inside before.

Miriam pressed the probe to my rosebud and I focussed, and relaxed and let it in. It filled me all by itself, but then it expanded to at least double it's original width! When the jets started working and the grinder that reduced all the solid mater to fine particles began working inside the probe, that was a bit different. It was like having a living thing inside me instead of an inanimate object. The action works like a pump, sending jets of water in, which you can absolutely feel, and then sucking the water, and what else, out through the hole that widens in the front. Inside that is the grinder, which makes the whole thing vibrate.

It worked for what seemed forever of incredible pressure inside me. Kaitlyn's strokes on my face and hair helped me through it. At the time I had no idea why someone would want to use one every day, but women that had them swore by them.

Miriam unlaced Kaitlyn's shoes, that were still on, and told me to go to the sink and fill one of the stainless steel bowls there with water just warm enough to not burn the underside of my forearm. When I returned, Miriam was just inserting the rectal probe into Kaitlyn.

"Relax, sweetie. Focus her," she pressed her thumb onto Kaitlyn's rosebud. When it slipped in she immediately replaced it with the probe.

Kaitlyn gasped as it slid inside her. Miriam pointed to the measuring cup on the table next to Kaitlyn's head and had me add it to the bowl of warm water. With a rag, I began washing the little girl's back as Miriam worked the probe for a few minutes to Kaitlyn's whimpers. Finally she pulled it out and emptied a tube of lubricant into Kaitlyn's rectum.

"Make sure you wash her thoroughly, Samantha. Everywhere. You'll even need to dip into her nethers a bit, if you know what I mean."

I nodded, and Miriam left us.

"Did it hurt?" I asked Kaitlyn.

"No," Kaitlyn said. "But it was very, very tense!"

"You mean intense?"

"Entense, yes!"

I smiled and used the rag and my free hand to explore Kaitlyn's little body. Her skin was as soft as a baby's, but then, she was very young. A part of me wished I could do this forever, and Kaitlyn moaned a bit as I massaged her back and legs and between her buns.

She rolled over for me as I was done and I began working on her front.

"You have pretty boobs," Kaitlyn said. "Can you give milk?"

"I've never had a baby, so no," I said.

"Mommy nursed me all the way up to the end. Her milk was so sweet! She'd only let me nurse before school and just before bed though, otherwise she pumped it out. I wish I could nurse now."

"You nursed all the way till now?"

"Yes. My sisters said it was weird, but I really loved it. Her boobies were so soft and her milk always made me feel good," she told me. "Hummmm…" She said as my fingers crossed over her cleft.

"Oh, Craig," I heard Mrs. Tucker arrive. "How are we doing?"

"We're actually ahead of schedule, Mrs. Tucker. You sent the girl in early. She'll be ready to baste pretty quick, then we'll mount her on the cradle and evacuate her organs. The two older sisters are next, right?"

"That's correct," Mrs. Tucker said. "As soon as the older girls are basted, bring the baster out so Elsa and I can baste each other. We plan on giving them quite a show." Mrs. Tucker was grinning. "As they cannot exactly punish us for it, I say, why not?"

Mr. Fleischer nodded. "I understand completely, Ma'am. I've had to look the other way more times than I can count on that type of thing, and I'm glad to do it. Damn government is all about control, and anything I can do to make my doe's end a little more pleasant, I'll do with pleasure. And that includes not seeing anything the authorities don't need to know about."

Mrs. Tucker smiled at him. "It makes me so happy you understand, Craig. Thank you again," she approached the table Kaitlyn and I occupied with Mr. Fleischer paying close attention to us. "This is so sweet of you to take such care of Kaitlyn, Samantha. I can't thank you enough."

I simply smiled, looked at Kaitlyn, caressed her pretty face, and looked back.

"How lovely. I was just telling Elsa that you and Kaitlyn had bonded so very well, I'd wished you'd come into our lives sooner. Will you be getting into the baster with Kaitlyn as well?"

"I can…"

"If you're going to do that, Miss Samantha," Mr. Fleischer said. "You'll have to get your skin sanitized the way you've done with Miss Kaitlyn. Miriam gave you a douche and an enema, correct?" I nodded. "Just need your skin cleaned and we're all good."

"I can do it!" Kaitlyn said. "Can I wash Samantha? Please?"

"You sure?" Mr. Fleischer looked askance.

"I will supervise, Craig."

"Alright; Just don't make me regret it, Mrs. Tucker. I only have the basting oil that's in the baster. I don't have time to run back to the shop and get more, and I don't want to have to change it anyway. It takes time."

I was doing Kaitlyn's legs at this point working toward her feet. The sanitizer had completely washed away the pink snap dragons on her skin, which I thought a shame… Miriam slipped a plastic shower cap over Kaitlyn’s hair and had come around with plastic booties for her feet, which I had finished.

I couldn’t help myself, I slowly ran my hands up Kaitlyn’s sides, over her tender skin. My thumbs passed over her nipples and Kaitlyn’ shivered a bit. Her chest was heaving again, and I remembered to press on her tummy, which, once again, gave her relief. I knelt down as her breathing eased and kissed her again. People watched. I didn’t care. My tongue explored her mouth less desperately than the first time, and Kaitlyn simply submitted to it, allowing me to take pleasure in it. Maybe it was selfish of me…

Not to be a jerk, Miss,” Craig Fleischer said. “But we don’t have all day. If you could hop up and get cleaned up, it would make me very happy.”

I nodded, and turned around, bracing myself against the high table, I was facing Mrs. Tucker and her friends Mrs. Finney and Mrs. Monroe. The two women in their modest but expensive red and blue dresses both had intense looks on their faces as they watched me, chests heaving and breathing through parted lips on their lovely oval faces.

I hopped and pushed up with my arms and landed on my bare bottom, the chill of the stainless steel almost stinging my flesh. Kaitlyn drew herself up to kneel as I replaced her body with my own, face down as she had been.

Rosy,” Mrs. Tucker said. “Could you fetch Elsa? Tell her it’s time to come in,” she was handing her lavender gray cloak to Miriam, and doffed her waist cape.

I almost kicked the bowl of sanitizer off the table as I nervously and awkwardly positioned myself. The table was warm only in the small area where Kaitlyn’s skin had made contact, the rest of it was icy cold on my skin. That it was completely wet more in the cold parts than in the warm parts made it doubly uncomfortable.

Come, Kaitlyn,” said Mrs. Tucker to the girl. “Let us get Miss Samantha cleaned up.”

Mrs. Tucker’s attention was methodical while Kaitlyn’s was exploratory. Mrs. Tucker had enough kindness to allow Kaitlyn to entertain her curiosity, which was focused largely on my bottom. It was not just pleasurable for her. I was relishing it. I was completely in love with her hands on my body. Mrs. Tucker gave Kaitlyn more access to me when she, rather brusquely, pried my ankles apart.

I moaned a little as Kaitlyn used her rag and her tiny fingers on my rosebud and my nethers… it was as sensual a thing as I’d ever felt, verging on sexual. Her delicate little hand explored me as if I were some prized doll she had asked Santa for months ago and now was Christmas.

Make sure you wash inside her, Kaitlyn,” I heard Mrs. Tucker say as she washed between my toes.

It’s such a shame those beautiful floral designs won’t survive the washing…” Mrs. Finney said.

Indeed,” Mrs. Tucker said.

Kaitlyn’s fingers did dip inside me, not deeply, but just enough to make me gasp. I was sure the job Kaitlyn did was not as thorough as Mr. Fleischer would have liked.

Roll over, dear,” Mrs. Tucker patted my bottom.

I rolled over moving as awkwardly as I had before. When I was laying face up, Kaitlyn moved up so that her knees were at my waist, and she very enthusiastically began washing my left arm and hand, running the rag up and down and watching the dye that had adorned it disappear. I gave her my other arm when she was done with the first and she leaned over me to do the chore. When she was done, she settled back, dipped her rag in the bowl of sanitizer, and gave me another glorious view of her happy front teeth. Then she drew her rag over my chest as Mrs. Tucker was moving up my legs. She was coming dangerously close to my nethers. Something about how she was touching me screamed; “remember Martha Carrington? But my attention was drawn back to Kaitlyn who had taken a very delighted interest in my breasts and nipples. The little girl had the strangest look on her face as she held each of them between both hands in turn, and teased my nipple as if testing it for… something…

I learned what that something was when she leaned down and put her lips to my left nipple, taking it into her mouth. It was the first time I ever understood what the sucking reflex does. Kaitlyn had never lost it. I gasped at the pain and the pleasure of it. I had no milk for her, but she sucked anyway as if my breast was her meal. I gasped again as Mrs. Tucker slipped her fingers inside me and pressed her thumb on my clitoris. My hands instinctively went to hers as my body convulsed. I think I orgasmed immediately and I have no idea how long this lasted, but it must between the two of them I knew nothing else for what must have been some time. As the violence of those sensations subsided, I experienced the glorious pleasure of a sensual kiss from Kaitlyn, and raised my head to meet her.

There was already a shower cap on my head and plastic booties on my feet by the time I knew the world again.

Are you okay?” Kaitlyn asked me after our lips parted.

Oh,” Mrs. Tucker said. “She’s very well, Kaitlyn. I say she’s very, very well indeed. It’s such a shame we did not give you any comfort juice, dear. It would be such a nice thing to have you and Kaitlyn join Elsa and I out there…” It did not dawn on me till that evening what Mrs. Tucker meant by that… I was still a bit disoriented and confused.

Craig Fleischer had Kaitlyn by her hips and lifted her as if she weighed nothing at all, setting her onto the ground standing up. He came for me immediately, his large hands gripping me around my hip bone and lifting me bodily like a rag doll. I managed to light upon my feet, almost flailing, but my hands met Kaitlyn’s shoulders and she helped me steady myself. I could barely stand. My legs were like Jello.

Kaylee,” Craig Fleischer said. “Get them into the baster while we get these others ready…”

Kaylee, who was perhaps a year older than me, thin and tall and auburn headed with a too freckled but pretty face let me lean on her as she took us to the baster. We walked passed wide eyed June, Rosy and Elsa who must have seen me in the throws of orgasm. I think I must have blushed as I staggered past, so humiliated I felt. The heavily breathing women from New Jersey had certainly witnessed it…

The baster was essentially an oval trough with low sides on wheels. About seven or eight inches of thick, oily, spiced sauce filled the bottom, and, I sat on its edge while Kaylee removed my booties, then almost fell in on my bottom… it was completely ungraceful. Kaitlyn landed on my lap.

Make sure she’s completely coated up to her neck,” Kaylee said. “And take care to massage it in. The baste works best when it is massaged in… it works by osmosis through the skin into the bloodstream, and flavours the meat. So massage brings blood to the skin’s surface, okay?”

I nodded, and began by cupping the baste in both hands and coating Kaitlyn’s back with it. It was clear, but brownish with a lot of whatever spice particles. Sort of like Italian dressing. Kaitlyn turned her head and looked up at me, smiling that amazing smile.

Can we do this in heaven?” she asked.

I could only grin. “Any time you want!” I said. “You really enjoy this?”

Yes! Oh, Yes!” She said. She turned in my arms and knelt straddling my outstretched legs. She put her oily hands on my neck, and left them there, holding herself up as my hands ran over her torso. Her breathing seemed laboured again, so I pressed on her tummy securing her with my other hand on the small of her back. I had no idea what was in that drink… Comfort Juice™, but its effect was more pronounced as time went on.

All too soon the two Misters Fleischer wheeled up the cradle that was a miniaturized copy of the one that had taken my virginity.

Shaking, I stood, drawing Kaitlyn up with me. Kaylee was there and she handed me a large cotton rag, to wipe off the baste, she said. As I began stripping off the oily stuff the two men took hold of Kaitlyn from each side of her. They each took a forearm and a thigh, lifted her up and carried her over the cradle, her bottom hung low as she hovered over the thing and they carefully positioned it over the menacing phallus that was the anal probe.

Kaitlyn let out a whimpering little gasp as the cold stainless steel obelisk touched her rosebud. Relax, little angel, Craig, the elder Fleischer cooed. Soon it seemed, the thing slipped into Kaitlyn as if she had invited it.

Ahhh! Ahhh!” Kaitlyn gasped at it went in, though somehow I could tell it was from the shock of the pressure more than from any pain. But she needed me, and I rushed to her side to offer what comfort I could. They lay her down onto the narrow, asbestos padded double rail that would support her body on just either side of her spine and small pads that were at her shoulders. The younger Mr. Fleischer secured Kaitlyn’s wrists as Craig Fleischer put a Velcro strap over her neck, then the two of them each secured one of Kaitlyn’s ankles. As I had been once before, Kaitlyn lay in a sitting position with her bottom low, and her head high as if she were sitting in a fancy lounge chair.

I came to her and caressed her cheeks and forehead. Her lips were trembling, and she turned her head into my palm, kissed it and closed her eyes as if trying to hide. I put my free hand on her tummy again and pressed.

The Fleischer men left us for parts unknown and the girl Kaylee had taken their place. She set to work adjusting the vaginal stabilizer’s height. It was a smaller than the one that had ruptured my hymen, and it appeared to have a rubber surface. Kaylee was lubricating it with the loving care she might have given the real thing.

Kaylee,” the younger Mr. Fleischer said as he passed by. “Get over there and get those two basted. They’re going to make us late!”

I looked back at the baster where June and Rosy sat hugging themselves and crying. Kaylee’s freckled face smirked and her eyes rolled, but she obeyed and left us. She began by brusquely pulling Rosy’s arm up and rubbing the spiced stuff all over it. Rosy sobbed pathetically as she received Kaylee’s unwelcome attention.

I’ll be back,” said Mr. Fleischer after he’d watched the overly dramatic scene with us for a moment.

Poor Rosy,” said Kaitlyn. “She never did like to be told what to do…”

Beyond the Baster, Mrs. Tucker and Elsa were in their own little world. They knelt facing each other on the tall, stainless steel table and were enjoying a long, continuous lip lock that was broken only by moans as they touched each other’s sex.

Young Mr. Fleischer returned to us, taking my attention back.

How are you feeling, Little Angel?”

I’m okay,” Kaitlyn said. “Samantha’s here, so I‘m okay.”

Good,” said the young man. I judged him to be in his late twenties, but at the time I was no good judge of age… “I’m going to put something inside you. You’ll feel pressure, and it might tingle. It’ll also be a little squirmy when I turn it on. So don’t be afraid, okay?” Kaitlyn’s eyes looked worried, but she nodded. “As soon as you feel better, and you will, we’re going to open up your tummy and clean you out. That’ll take away those annoying tingles that make it hard to breath… okay?” He turned to me. “As soon as she has an orgasm, turn off the probe. Then just keep her comfortable.”

Mr. Fleischer turned on the phallus and began sliding it into Kaitlyn. It was maybe an inch in diameter, making it about a third less wide than the one on the full sized cradles, but it loomed large going into Kaitlyn’s tender little body.

Kaitlyn’s reaction to it was quite the same as her reaction to the anal probe. Her lips formed an “O” and her eyes went wide. Mr. Fleischer’s long fingers landed on my hand at her tummy and pulled it down Kaitlyn’s body till my fingers parted her cleft.

Gently massage her here,” said the younger Mr. Fleischer with such an air of clinical business that made the sensation of Kaitlyn’s swollen little clitoris more surreal than it already was. I complied. My fingers rubbed her by their length sliding down the cleft they parted as I kept my face on her cheek, nuzzling it as if I were her mother. Her restrained body writhed with amazing animation as the rape continued. Finally she drew a very deep gasp, and seemed to want to draw more than her own lung capacity, her mouth agape, eyes wide, and I could feel her body convulse. I pressed on her clitoris as Mom had done for me when she tried to teach me to masturbate all those years ago. When I knew Kaitlyn was in complete agony, I hurried to switch off the phallus, and I caressed and kissed her face feeling the guilt of having let it torture her too long. Her eyes were closed, though, and her breath even… she was peacefully, even serenely, asleep.

Kaitlyn’s even breathing in my ear was drowned out by a mournful cry of fear. The two Fleischer men had hold of Rosy and were lifting her out of the baster as June sat there, still hugging herself, weeping quietly even as her sister protested loudly. As they had with Kaitlyn, the Fleischers walked the girl over to one of the cradles that awaited her. When she saw where she was headed, she let out another pleading cry.

Oooooh! Noooo! Pleaaase!” Rosy pleaded as her bottom hovered over the erect probe.

Relax your rosebud, Rosy,” said Craig Fleischer. “Or it will hurt!”

As her nethers touched the thing, the elder Fleischer once again warned her to relax, and the two men lowered hapless Rosy, impaling her to a scream of agony. I had Kaitlyn’s ears covered, thank goodness I had enough presence of mind for that.

Jesus Christ Almighty!” Complained the elder Mr. Fleischer as they secured Rosy down. “Tam, get the chloroform over here. Now!”

The girl, Tam, who was freckled like most if not all of the girls here, arrived with a bottle and a rag she wet with the bottle’s contents. Craig Fleischer snatched it up as soon as it was wet and smothered Rosy with it, silencing her and making the room suddenly bearable again.

Drama!” Miriam said at my side. “Those two were always about drama.” She watched with me as the two men had June now. But June chose to whimper quietly, and when they warned her to relax, she only expressed her agony silently rather than copy her sister’s example.

Samantha,” Miriam said. “When you’re ready, I placed your things and some toiletries in the shower down the hall. Mrs. Tucker had a gift for you as well, she wanted you to have. I won’t be available to you for a while, as I have to attend to Mrs. Tucker and Elsa. It’s the second door past the last staircase on your left. Do you think you can find it? Good… will you be alright?” I nodded again, quite dishonestly. “Thank you again for taking care of Kaitlyn. Mrs. Tucker… and I are very fond of her…”

She left me just as Mr. Fleischer the younger returned.

How’s our little angel?” he asked.

Asleep,” I said.

Good… Samantha… it is Samantha, right? Good. I’m Karl. Craig, over there, is my uncle. Okay… let’s get this precious little thing on her way…”

Out of the pocket of his chef’s smock he drew a knife. It was a vicious looking thing that resembled the beak of a very mean raptor. With the agility that spoke of years of experience, he placed his fingers at Kaitlyn’s sternum, and as soon as he found where her bone ended, brought the tip of the knife to her tender flesh, and carefully slid it in. Carefully, but not terribly slowly, he drew the knife down to her tummy to her pubic mound as I watched with morbid fascination.

There was surprisingly little blood, and what there was of it was thick and scarlet. Kaitlyn stirred only a little as he worked, the discomfort affecting whatever peaceful dream she’d been having.

Kaylee brought to Karl a stainless steel bowl that was a much larger version I’d used earlier to clean Kaitlyn’s skin. Into this, Karl deposited Kaitlyn’s organs. He dipped his hands into her abdomen with the knife and extracted each one quite carefully, barely affecting Kaitlyn at all. He brought out Kaitlyn’s stomach and both intestines as a single mass, having clamped both ends so as not to spill their contents. While this process took no more than ten minutes or so, the elder Craig had already finished Rosy and was halfway done with June by the time Karl was cleaning off the skin around Kaitlyn’s gaping wound. He nodded to Kaylee and she pushed a button on a remote, resulting in a whirring sound from above me.

I looked up to see that above Kaitlyn hung the other part of this cooking device. It was a large glass cover shaped like an egg split in half longways that had embedded in its spine were convection blowers. Cut out of lip over Kaitlyn’s neck was a cut-out that resembled a train tunnel carved into the side of a hill. It fit directly over Kaitlyn’s neck and would protect her head from the intense heat of the oven that now encased her tender, naked body. The spine was stainless, as I said, but the sides were double pained glass and fit snugly into the tray upon which the cradle sat.

If these work, you think Uncle Craig’ll spring for a set?” asked Kaylee.

Oh, they’ll work,” Karl said. “How well they work is the question. We’ll see. As for Uncle Craig, you know how he is about new fangled anything. Tucker said one hour to cook… we’ll see… that very well might impress him…”

Five hundred?” Kaylee asked.

Two fifty for fifteen minutes, then five hundred for forty five... you set the timer like… uhm… shoot… oh fiddle, how does this gosh durn thing go?... ah! Okay, like so…see?”

Got it.”

Karl turned to me, retrieved a squirt bottle and handed it to me. “If she wants water, give it to her… you are staying, right?”

Kaitlyn only opened her eyes once after that. She did ask for water, and I put the bottle to her lips and irrigated her parched mouth. When she’d drunk her fill she told me she wanted to sleep.

I love you…” she whispered, and her eyes closed. Only moments later she stopped breathing for the last time.

I felt suddenly alone… and so purposeless. I looked around, no one was paying any attention to me as they bustled and clanked about, rushing things out to the guests outside. I saw neither Karl, nor Craig, nor Kaylee among them, only Tam did I recognize.

And I was suddenly aware of the once slick, now sticky substance coating my nakedness… and I was immediately after more aware of that! I was coated and nude and gross and I wanted to hide. I looked back on Kaitlyn’s face that seemed only to be sleeping.

Goodbye, Kaitlyn,” I whispered, and slipped away as best I could hoping no one would notice. I made my way into the gloomy hallway and in the opposite direction of where the kitchen help was moving, down past the last staircase, the one Miriam mentioned and the same one where Kaitlyn and I shared our first kiss. Two doors down on the left, I found the bathroom.

My blue harem outfit was there, gold slippers included sitting atop a very plush, and very large bath towel that would have covered me neck to toes if I wrapped it around me. There was a makeup kit complete with lipstick, blush, eye shadow and liner pencil. There was a toothbrush and toothpaste. And Mrs. Tucker’s gift; A beautiful leather Gucci purse. Next to it was something else. It was white, plastic, about six inches long and an inch in diameter, and it ran on batteries. Upon it was taped a note: “A Gift, or two, from your friend, Claudia Tucker.” That I was not expecting. I took it into the shower with me and I used is as I wept for Kaitlyn. It helped cover up the pain and my tears, even to myself. Thankfully, no one interrupted me while I was in there.

At least I had the presence of mind not to take off the shower cap, it kept my fancy up do dry. Once my skin was dry, I re-applied my makeup, and maybe looked like I hadn’t been crying for the past half hour, I dressed and made my way out.

It was at the same staircase where Kaitlyn and I had shared our kiss that I heard some lip smacking and a moan. I looked up, and in the darkness saw two figures. One was wearing red, the other wore an blue dress which was open as was her bra with her panties were around her thighs. The two stopped and looked at me, wide eyed.

Please…” Mrs. Finney begged.

I would never,” I said. “I would never… you don’t have anything to be afraid of…” I left them. Something about that scene gave me a strange satisfaction that the intimacy Kaitlyn and I shared had somehow made at least two others happy.

Outside, the party was in full swing. Dancers danced, glasses chinked, laughers laughed, and the jokesters cracked lame jokes that people couldn’t help but roar and howl at. The alcohol flowed freely. Several couples were showing their stuff on the dance floor, their graceful violence as the men flipped the women about in spins and dips that held the attention of many.

Where have you been?” Jenna snorted at me suddenly. “Ashima’s been looking everywhere, and I think Daddy’s mad at you for something… he didn’t sound happy.”

Where is he?”

Jenna pointed across the floor where Daddy and Mom were just coming off. They’d been one of those couples! She stuck with me as I went to see them.

There you are!” Daddy said. “We need to talk!” he had that ‘You’re in so much trouble’ voice he’d used on Jenna just a few days ago.

What did I do?” I asked. Mom gave me a sympathetic look that told me I was in more trouble that she was comfortable with.

Jenna,” he said. “Take a hike.”

Later!” Jenna smirked.

So, I just met a very interesting man named Johnny DeSilva. He says he knows you…

Okay, so Daddy, apparently, had had a conversation with Johnny all about Friday night. I learned two things: one, I was to make time to tell him and Mom, and all my siblings about my little adventure and leave out no details at all. Two: I was going to get a spanking for not informing him or Mom before I went, which, he told me, he would have said yes! By the way. I’m not sure I bought that part. If I left anything out, he’d find out, and if I did, I’d get spanked again for it.

He kissed me, told me he loved me more than life itself, then took Mom back out onto the dance floor and proved he was as much of a dancer as any man out there. I know, I watched!

You missed the big event!” Ashima had found me, clinging to Jake’s arm.

What did I miss?” I asked, knowing whatever it was had been worth missing for what I had experienced.

My mother and my sister,” Jake said. “They put on some show for all of us… but you were with Kaitlyn, correct?”

I was.”

Mom was very fond of her,” Jake said. “She was almost crying when she told us how you were with her… so thank you!”

Kaitlyn was very sweet to me,” I said. “Very sweet.”

But enough melancholy!” Ashima said. “You must meet my friend Blythe!” She reached for my hand and kissed her husband’s cheek. “Do not stray too far, I shall return!”

Yeah, right! Famous last words! You’ll return when you’ve chatted up the neighbourhood sometime next week…”

Or later!” Ashima said. “Come, Samantha. You must help me. I believe I have convinced her almost to sign with Zenana Magazine!”

You mentioned that once before… I forget when,” I said. “Is that what you’ve decided to call the Magazine?”

Oh! Did I not tell you? My parents and I and Belinda Hawthorn and Bernard had a meeting on the phone a week ago Thursday. Zenana means Cloister or Harem in Hindi and we decided that we should use it as our moniker. Our Playmates will be Concubines of the Month and Year. I have high hopes we can get them the same status in India as American Playmates have. I do not know if our president will support us or not, but I have high hopes. And If I can get Blythe to support me, I think our chances improve. She currently works for the U.K. Guardian, and is a crime reporter there. She is somewhat known in India as the paper is published there as well. Many Anglophiles in India, you see. And she lived there for most of her first eleven years, though we never met till we went to school in London together.”

You’re trying to get her as a staff writer?”

And assistant editor, as well. It is something of a promotion for her and there will be more money if she agrees. But she has yet to agree. There she is! Blythe!!”

Is this her?” the woman, who was the tall blonde who served as Ashima’s maid of honour. Her perfect body was on display under the transparent powder blue Sari. She towered over Ashima and me.

Blythe Collier, this is Samantha Wells, my first assistant editor in training! Blythe was the one who protected me from the blues in school.”

You just need to know who’s nose to break,” Blythe said. “The rest don’t bother you after that.”

Blues?” I asked.

Blue Bloods,” Blythe said. “The little ladies, and Dinky Duchesses, daughters of the ruling class that think they are above us poor sows…”

I’m not at all familiar with British culture,” I said.

Oh!” Ashima said, exasperated. “I’m sure you will be very soon, I’m afraid. See that man over there? That is Lord Gregory. He is actually very nice. His wife, however, is exactly the type of woman that made my life hell for four years in boarding school!”

That’s Lord Gregory?” Blythe asked. “The Lord Gregory?”

The man Ashima had pointed out was a little taller than Daddy and seemingly a little leaner. He had jet black hair that was graying at the temples over a clean shaven and very handsome face. He might have been fifty. He held himself straight and conversed easily with the mixed group of Americans and Indians who were gathered round, which included Rachel Foss and Ashima’s Aunt Jyoti, who I knew to be very disapproving of the nudity in this wedding.

Is that his wife?” I asked of the attractive woman at his side.

No,” Ashima said. “That is Portia, his secretary and concubine. She should be his wife, they are so much in love, I think.”

You know him?” I asked Blythe.

Know him?” Blythe asked incredulously. “Everyone in the United Kingdom, including the British Congo knows him!”

Ah, here comes the grand romantic conspiracy theory…” Ashima was shaking her head.

It is not!” Blythe said. “It’s true!” Then she lowered her voice so only we three could hear. “He’s the one who deflowered and jilted none other than Princess Elizabeth herself when she was at the tender age of fifteen just before her father died and she became Queen Elizabeth III! He’s spent twenty four years in exile in the Congo because of it! The rumour is that Prince James, the Prince of Wales, is her son!”

But the official version, and the one most sane people believe, is that Elizabeth was artificially inseminated with sperm from an anonymous British donor,” Ashima said. “And there’s the fact that she gave birth ten months after she ascended to the throne.”

So they say! But who saw her in the last two months? Answer, nobody but her private staff! Was she actually nursing young James during that period? Hmmmm?”

Jenna would love this,” I said. She would too, being a secret Royal watcher. I was not much interested, it had nothing at all to do with anything that had to do with anything important.

She very much did,” Ashima said. “She seems rather taken with malicious gossip.”

I cringed at that. Jenna may irk me to no end. We may fight all the time. But she is my sister, and I do love her and I hate it when she embarrasses herself in front of others.

So,” Blythe finally said. “You’re Ashima’s little editor…”

I’ve done an interview…”

I will make it official this week,” Ashima said. “You’re an assistant editor of Zenana Magazine, Samantha. You have done the work and earned the title. Bess, she has charmed Jakim Golguli and you know how difficult that is! He was more candid with her than he has been with anyone!”

I wouldn’t go that far,” I said.

And I know how you love to embellish, Ashima,” Blythe said. “But we’ll see.”

It’s true! My father said it himself, that Samantha had done the impossible! He is very impressed and my father, as you know, is not easily impressed! The interview will be published in only two weeks in the very first issue of Zenana. It was approved by the Playpen board of directors! They even think it might be important enough for American readers to see it… so yes, you will see!”

But you’re trying to convince me to move back to India on hearsay, Ashima!”

No! I am not. You will see the material before you go! And you will only need to be there six months to gather your team from January to June! You may return to Southampton immediately in July and even do work for the Guardian after you return! As I said, Samantha, Blythe is one of the Guardian’s new Turks in their crime reporting!”

I’m told British Crime reporters are the bane and the brawn of Scotland Yard…” I had heard that from Miss Masters.

That is how Lord Mitchell put it some seventy five years ago,” Blythe said. “I think now we’re considered more the bane than anything. A means of their embarrassment over their incompetence.”

I think you will do well in India, Blythe. Be our trainer! You’ll have the pick of any you like to work for you!”

Next you’ll be asking me to get my kit off and pose for the cameras…”

If you like,” Ashima said and Blythe snorted. “But you may not be a Concubine of the Month, that is reserved for Indian women only.”

Silly me, I was only jesting. You could surely talk Her Majesty the Queen into posing nude if you set your mind to it…” Blythe said.

Don’t be ridiculous…”

You got Nita.”

Nita is my cousin!”

And who was completely against even coming here to this wedding because of the risqué attire. Anyway, I’m not agreeing, Ashima. Not yet. I love the offer, I do. But I have to see some proof before I make this terrible leap that could end my career. You watch, Samantha. Her other cousin, Kaaliya, she will pose next. You watch.”

I’m still speaking with her of it,” Ashima admitted.

I’m so very sure you are! Be careful, Samantha, you are next, I hope you know.”

Hah!” Ashima said. “I already know that Bernard Foss will have snatched her away from me for his magazine before I ever have the chance at her! She is all he speaks of!”

What with that bombshell, I was able to get not one more word out of Ashima on the matter. She acted as if she’d not ever said anything and seemed genuinely angry when I tried to ask her about it further.

The rest of the afternoon was a test of endurance for me. We were soon seated at those large round ten seat tables placed where the wedding audience had once sat. I was served soup while all others were served five slices of meat, one from each of the roasts. I was seated at the same table with Akam Attariwala, Ashima’s Aunt Jyoti and none other than Johnny DeSilva. While Akam Attariwala and Aunt Jyoti batted the idea of proper feminine behaviour back and forth, Johnny spoke jovially with all except me. Oh, he was very polite to me, to be sure. But he was looking at me out of the corner of his eye the whole time. Several tables away, so was Martin Tucker.

The party broke up about five, and my father drove us all home. Jimmy complained that my skin dye was gone and he wanted photos… he actually wanted me to pose for him. Jenna, Gracie and Mom had already agreed to do so…

Jenna was furiously trying to make sure she remembered every little titbit of gossip she’d heard, from ‘across the pond’ on the East Coast and out here locally. She was encouraged, quite out of character, by Gracie!

And Dr. Sharpe!” Gracie suddenly mentioned. “What a character he was!”

Yeah,” Jenna said. “He kept saying he should have made my boobs bigger! How the heck do we know him, Mom?”

He was my obstetrician when I was pregnant with you three,” Mom said. She looked at me, and her eyes held a sad expression…

How rude he was,” Jenna said. “Anyway, so Brian Baker wanted to be Mrs. Fordham but had to settle for concubine when her sister stepped in…”

It was easy for me to tune out… I was just lost in my own melancholy. Mom and Daddy might have thought it was over Daddy’s stated intentions. But even as frightening as that was, for me the evening was all about Kaitlyn… and Danny…