chapter: #15 - A Move Toward Madness
It took Marshall hours to find a blacksmith who could execute
his requirements, and only the awe that `The Savior' evoked
in the Daemona made him consent to what he obviously thought
was a demented request. In an hour, the job was completed. Marshall
waited for Silvera to appear at his door, as he was certain
she would. He hoped Lilly trusted him enough to wait for him
to come to her -- and to open the door to him when he did. Although
he was grateful that the demands of Silvera had forced Lilly
to reverse her position on their relationship, he knew it was
predicated on a very tenuous premise ... and he could see that
Lucifer and Sterling were going to do their best to pressure
him into an alliance with the princess...
It was nearly midnight when the door swung open, and a female
figure stood outlined in the moonlight from the window. She
was clad in what appeared to be a nearly transparent robe of
gossamer; it reminded Marshall of the gowns her mother, Princess
Ariel, had worn when she was young. But Princess Ariel would
never have displayed her charms so brazenly. She moved into
the room, surveying him uncertainly.
"Close the door." Marshall's voice held no emotion.
She turned back and did so. Then, as she neared the bed, she
said, "I had thought you would come to me."
Marshall closed the book and tossed it onto the carpet, which
appeared to be spun from fluffy silk. His eyes met hers, coldly.
"Why would you think that? Surely, if I went to anyone
it would be Lilly."
Silvera's fists clenched at her sides. "Why won't you understand?
You were brought here to be my consort! You will be! You will!"
Marshall thought she would throw herself onto the floor and
drum her heels like a child. Quickly, before she knew he had
left the bed, he was at her side. "Will I, do you think?"
He grasped her wrists and dragged her towards him. "Perhaps
you won't want me to, when you know me a little better."
She stared at him in disbelief. "What ... what do you mean?"
"Come ... I have something to show you." Not waiting
for her response, he dragged her behind him, into the adjoining
"Yes, all right. Lord Marshall -- you are hurting me!"
"You have displeased me, and you must suffer the consequences.
I am your Master, princess ... you'll learn that tonight."
Marshall pulled Silvera towards the far wall, where the mirror
had been removed to leave the surface bare. In the wall had
been set black-iron chains, and from the chains hung gyves of
the same iron, padded with layers of leather on the inside.
The princess didn't know this, but Marshall had no intention
of hurting her -- he didn't even want the gyves to chafe her
wrists. But he was determined to be rid of her attentions, and
he had no intention of being the `Savior' of the Daemona yet
again -- by mating with their princess. He hoped he could scare
her into casting him off -- he'd deal with Lucifer and Sterling
when that happened, no matter how angry they were.
"What ... what are those? I've never seen the like. Whatever
can they be for?"
Marshall smiled grimly down at her. "Let me show you."
Pulling her towards the wall, he enclosed one of her wrists
in the cuff and snapped it closed. Before she knew exactly what
he was doing, he had her against the wall and had imprisoned
her other wrist. She was immobile.
"Lord Marshall -- release me! Is this some kind of game
from your world? I don't like it." Silvera attempted to
use her usual imperious tone of voice, but she was obviously
"These are one of the milder `toys' used in a game known
as Bondage and Discipline in my world. As I said, you have displeased
me greatly by your behavior to my friends. I will release you
when I am ready -- not before. And you, my dear, will have to
be patient until then."
"I shall scream! My father and grandfather will hear me,
and come to my rescue. Then they will deal with you -- and my
grandfather will be very angry that you have done this to me!"
Marshall seemed unmoved by her threat. "Yes, I'm certain
he would be. But you're not going to tell him, and you're not
going to scream." He leaned nonchalantly against one of
the wardrobes. "If you do, you'll never have me. Is that
what you want, Silvera?"
"I ... I ... want you to release me!" She was close
"And so I will. When I have impressed upon you the necessity
of obeying me. Because if you do not, I have worse punishments
I can inflict on you. Much worse than this, little Princess.
And you won't scream for help, because if you do, then you know
you'll never have what you want of me." He pushed himself
away from the wall and came to take her in his arms, and pull
her body against his. "A child to rule this world -- a
child born of a Daemona princes and the Savior -- oh, yes, little
Princess ... I know what you want."
He lowered his head to kiss her, and when he felt her respond,
he pushed her back against the wall. Then he walked to the door
and left without looking back. Once he got outside his chambers
and into the corridor, he sagged against the wall, his legs
nearly collapsing under him. He thought he was going to vomit,
and wished he hadn't eaten dinner or drunk several tankards
of ale. If he had known how difficult it would be -- how truly
repulsive -- he would have done better with an empty stomach.
Now he must find Lilly, and he only had an hour. That was all
he could bear to leave the princess chained to the wall. And
he had no idea where they had put Lilly -- as far from his chambers
as possible, if Silvera had anything to do with it. He hoped
she was near Evan and Valaura. He didn't want her to be alone
in this place. In Marshall's mind the Land of the Cup was proving
to be ten times worse than the Land of the Wand had ever been.
He finally located a servant who could lead him to Lilly's chambers,
but by the time he reached them, a half-hour had elapsed. He
would only have a few minutes to talk to Lilly, and then he
would have to run back to his chambers if he was to be there
is time for his self-imposed deadline.
He knocked on the outer door, and was relieved when it was Lilly
who opened it. Over her shoulder he could see that she had nothing
more than a bedroom. The chamber didn't even appear to have
a private bath. He frowned. "Lilly, I have to talk to you,
but I only have a few minutes. May I come in?"
She stood aside and let him pass into the chamber. As she closed
the door behind him she said, "I suppose you have to get
back to the Princess." Her voice was bleak.
"Yes, I do. And if your idiot friend Evan hadn't brought
us here on one of his stupid whims, there wouldn't be any Princess
for me to deal with!" Marshall realized his voice was going
up in volume, and attempted to keep it under control. "Sorry,
Lillikins, but if you think you hate my having to be with Princess
Silvera, you can't even imagine how I feel." He threw himself
on her bed. "Or how she feels at this moment!" He
started to giggle uncontrollably, and Lilly stood in the middle
of the carpet, staring at him uncertainly.
"Uh -- how does she feel?"
"How would you feel if you were chained to the wall of
my dressing room?" His laughter was out of control, and
Lilly sat on the edge of the bed gingerly, watching him in horrified
"Like killing whoever put me there. Oh, Marsh! You didn't
... did you?"
"Yes, love." He stopped laughing, and sat up to meet
her eyes. "I had to do something to discourage her, didn't
Lilly thought about tis for a moment. "Did you hurt her?"
"Of course not!" Marshall was indignant. "And
I can't stay here very long. I have to go back and let her go."
"You know, love, I don't think it's going to work."
"Why not? Would you want a lover who chained you to the
"No, but Silvera wants you; and she has more than one reason
for doing so. Marshall, I have to know something. When you made
love to the Princess -- were you the first?"
"Yes. How did you know?"
"I suspected it from the fuss that Lucifer and Sterling
have been making. They seem to have a different standard for
princesses than the do for ordinary folk. Or maybe it's just
that Silvera has to bond with a male before she can take other
lovers. But my point is that if she's never had a lover before
you, how can she possibly know what to expect? For all she knows,
all the men from our world chain their women to the wall."
"Surely not! Not after seeing you and Valaura."
"She has no idea what we do in our bedchambers. That's
why this may not work, love. She has no standard for comparison.
If she's going to realize that what you're doing constitutes
unusual behavior, to say the least, then someone is going to
have to tell her."
"You tell her."
"What! You don't seriously think she'd believe me, do you?
You're not thinking very clearly, Savior of the Daemona."
Marshall groaned and put his head down into his hands. "Then
what are we going to do?"
"I'll think of something while you're gone on this hunting
trip. Trust me, sweetheart, and bring me a baby Frost Monster
for a pet."
"OK. What is a Frost Monster?"
I have no idea. Marsh, did you use dialogue out of one of those
bondage movies? `You Are My Slave, I Am Your Master' -- that
kind of thing?"
"Exactly! How did you guess?"
"You wouldn't have known what to say, otherwise!"
They both collapsed in laughter again.
* * *
By the time Marshall had arrived back at his chambers, closer
to two hours had passed. He felt horrible about that, but when
he was with Lilly he had forgotten the time. When he entered
the dressing room Silvera seemed composed, but he could see
the marks of tears on her cheeks. He wondered just how close
she had come to summoning her father and grandfather to her
"I see you have followed my orders, Princess. I am pleased."
"Well, I am not!" She fairly screamed at him. "I
order you to release me this instant!"
Marshall shook his head, smiling slightly. "You really
are a very slow learner, my dear. God forbid you're intellectually
inferior ... that would be very sad in a Princess of the Daemona."
"I certainly am not! I'm simply not accustomed to being
treated in this manner." Her voice lowered, and became
plaintive. "You are going to release me, aren't you?"
"Of course I am. And what shall I do with you then? Why
did you come to me, I wonder? For this?" He stepped toward
her and leaned down to kiss her gently. He felt her body soften
slightly against his. She'd spent only on night with him, but
Marshall had known instinctively, when he began to make love
to her, that Silvera was a virgin. He had made her first experience
in physical love as pleasurable as possible, and softened the
pain where he could. This heightened her confusion at his present
behavior, and he knew it. "Or for this?" Stepping
back slightly, he took hold of the edge of her gown and tore
it away from her, letting it settle into a shimmering pool on
Silvera gasped and drew away, pressing herself against the wall.
"Marshall -- not here! Please, my Lord!"
"No, little Princess -- not here." He reached for
one of the manacles and released the catch on the side. There
was no key, because Marshall had wanted anyone who found the
princess to release her. Well, that little ploy hadn't worked
... she sagged against him slightly, as if in relief. Putting
one arm around her, he lead her to the nearest wardrobe. Flinging
open the door, he snatched up a cloak and wrapped it around
her with a feeling of irritation. She shouldn't have been walking
the corridors of the palace in that sheer gown, even if her
chambers were near to his.
Hoisting her into his arms, he turned and walked into the bedroom.
He kept going, out into the corridor and down to the chased
silver doors that heralded the entrance to Silvera's extensive
apartments. She was shaking slightly in his arms, and he knew
he wouldn't be able to leave her that night. He cursed her,
himself, and particularly Evan for the entire situation. He
was definitely going to get Evan for this, and that was a promise.
* * *
It was early the following morning when Lucifer appeared in
Marshall's bedroom on a beam of dewy sunshine. He turned eagerly
toward the bed, exclaiming, "A-ha! I've got you now, my
Lord!" His face fell ludicrously when he realized the bed
was empty. "Damn the girl -- she's taken him into her chambers
again, where I can't beam in!"
Angrily he dashed into the dressing room, hoping that Marshall
would be there alone. It too was empty. It was the shimmering
heap of Silvera's gown that caught his eye, and he crossed the
room to pick it up, recognizing it as belonging to his granddaughter,
The rent down the front was his first clue, and his eyes slowly
moved upward to rest on the iron manacles and their chains.
Dropping the gown, he picked up one of the manacles and studied
it with some puzzlement. Suddenly, with a flash of understanding,
he snapped it around his wrist. His gaze went to the other manacle,
and with a roar of rage he disappeared into his beam of light,
the empty manacle clanging against the marble wall.