Subject: Seasonal: Perchance to
Date: 29 Oct 1997 14:56:15 -0800
Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction dealing with adult subjects. If you are not of legal age stop reading now. Any resemblance between the characters in this story and persons living or dead is purely coincidental.
( A seasonal offering)
"So, how do you like our humble abode?" the woman asked, her wine glass poised halfway to her mouth.
They were everywhere, Alicia thought absently, partially mesmerized by glittering crystal pendants adorning the table lamps, as well as the chandelier and wall lamps. Myriad multicolor beams of light seemed to dance in her eyes, reflecting from elegant gold tableware and gleaming china. "Too much wine." She thought to herself, feeling the impending vertigo brought on by demons inherent in the heady vintage that filled her goblet. An elbow jostled her, bringing her back to reality.
"Mrs. Coburn asked you a question, dear." Her husband's voice prompted.
Her host's face swam into view, benign on the surface, but concealing an almost sinister quality that hid behind her eyes. It might have been the reflection of firelight, but something definitely danced behind those windows to Rachel Coburn's soul; danced in primitive, bacchanalian glee.
"I'm sorry." Alicia apologized, lifting her glass slightly. "I'm afraid I've had a wee bit too much of this excellent wine. What did you say?"
Greg Williams looked a trifle embarrassed, but Mrs. Coburn simply displayed a tolerant amusement, the lights in her eyes dancing more quickly as she repeated her earlier inquiry.
"I asked how you like our Inn, dear. Do you like Seacliff?"
Alicia looked around her before answering, noting how the flickering fire and lamplight made shadows move in the dark wood-paneled corners. That same darkness pervaded the Inn, held at bay by daylight, but stealing forth at dusk to gather in every nook and cranny. A deep red carpeted staircase seemed to vanish into nothingness as it ascended from the ground floor to the rooms above. "Like a bridge to nowhere." Alicia mused silently, knowing full well it only led to the second floor, where guest rooms waited patiently in muted Victorian elegance. Other stairs led upward from the guest floor to the third story, discreetly closed off by a velvet rope. Her eyes drifted to the huge and weirdly ornate fireplace mantle, with its carved gargoyle faces leering back at all who were in the room. Their stone-blind gaze appeared to follow an observer, but that was only an illusion, or was it? She wondered. "Strange," she thought, "my tongue feels fat."
"Ahem!" Greg's cough jogged her back again.
"Sorry." Alicia offered. "It's very charming." She said lamely, not wanting to admit to the nice old woman that the place gave her the creeps.
A patronizing smile was her reward for that less than stellar review. Mrs. Coburn dabbed at the corner of her mouth with her napkin, replacing it on her lap before turning to Greg.
"Did you have much trouble finding us?" she asked.
"Well, to be honest," he admitted, "the cliff road was a bit much. Alicia was white-knuckled all the way up."
Smiling again, Mrs. Coburn allowed,
"I know it's difficult, and it sometimes washes out, but it does keep the casually curious away."
"Are you sure you want to do this?" Greg asked, craning his neck to see more of the serpentine road that torturously wound its way up the cliff face. At the very top, facing out over the craggy seacoast was their destination, the forbidding Seacliff Inn. Alicia had found it in one of their magazines, and thought it would be a good place to vacation in complete privacy: something the Inn advertised as its major benefit.
"Mmmmm." His wife murmured, hugging his arm while she also craned her neck for a better look. Whispering in his ear, she teased him,
"Imagine giving me a good flogging in one of those creepy Victorian rooms, or maybe in the damp, dark basement."
Greg's temperature rose just thinking about the possibilities. He and Alicia had been synergistic from the beginning, with her assuming the role of not-so-innocent sub, and he as the less-than-demonic master. Their play was fairly conservative and gentle, limited to spankings with hand, hairbrush, paddle, strap, and every now and then a flogger or small martinet. Not needing a safeword, they were really in tune with one another, she trusting his judgment implicitly. Greg managed to thoroughly redden his pretty blonde wife's rear, stinging every square inch of creamy white into brilliant crimson and raising her temperature to a furnace-like radiance without doing any lasting damage. The steamy sexual encounters that invariably followed were so incredible that both of them had become addicted to the ritual.
"Yeah." He breathed, running his eyes over his wife's lovely figure as she sat cuddled against him. "I'll shackle you to the bed, and then.." his voice trailed off as he grinned at her. Alicia covered his mouth with hers, flicking her tongue against his, showing her arousal.
Breaking away after a few hot moments, Greg's breath came hard, and he jammed the car in gear.
"Here goes." He said hopefully, beginning the long drive up the cliff.
About a third of the way up, Alicia began to have second thoughts. It was bad enough being right up against the dark, wet stone of the cliff face when they were going in one direction, but being poised on the edge of the precipice with no guard rail and hundreds of feet down to the road or crashing surf below gave her the willys. Several times, she screamed as the car lurched over a pothole, clinging to Greg as if they were about to die. Her husband sweated visibly as he slowly worked the car up the cliff, breathing a deep sigh of relief as they emerged out of a screen of wind-sculpted Junipers onto the cliff top. Scrub Oak and windblown Juniper dotted an area surrounding the Inn, which was about a hundred yards from the road, sitting perilously close to the face of the cliff, which curved around a promontory that jutted out into the sea.
"Ahh!" Alicia gasped, putting a hand to her mouth, stricken by the severe, ominous appearance of the place. A steel-blue sky reigned overhead, shot with torn, ragged white clouds that were headed inland. Ceaseless gusts of wind sighed, producing a murmuring sound from the deformed trees and scrub. There were gulls in sight, but none nearby, and no droppings visible on the house, which was enormous. It was almost as if nature had decided that this place was not to be trifled with.
They drove in silence to the circled plaza that sat beside the mansion, greeted there by Mrs. Coburn, an agelessly beautiful woman with fading Auburn hair. A perpetual half-smile graced her lips, making her twinkling green eyes even more compelling. Victorian dress completed the picture, and despite the perceived difference in age, Greg was totally enthralled by her. Taking her hand, he found himself nearly speechless, an uncustomary affliction. Her eyes seemed to go right through him, seeing his deepest and darkest secret thoughts, and being amused by them. Blushing without knowing why, he released the warm fingers, turning to introduce Alicia, who was gazing upward at the roof-mounted gargoyles, and the ornate woodwork that was everywhere.
"Welcome, dear." The older woman said, taking Alicia's arm and turning to lead them inside, "I have a wonderful stay planned for you."
A comprehensive tour ended at the dark, but opulently furnished room that would be home for the next week. Their baggage had magically transported itself from their car to the room, and Greg wondered how, as he had seen no trace of anyone but Mrs. Coburn since their arrival.
"Dinner promptly at six." The woman said, making to leave. "I'll leave you to freshen up. Feel free to explore, but please stay out of the areas that have been roped off. Renovation, you know." She smiled, the light from their fireplace dancing in her eyes.
The huge panelled door closed discreetly behind her, leaving the couple alone in oppressive quiet, broken only by the crackling of a freshly built fire.
"Time for a spanking before dinner?" Alicia teased, tickling Greg as he tried to strip off his sweatshirt.
"Think we ought to?" he asked, glancing at the huge carved door.
"This place must be practically soundproof," she said impishly, "besides, that's why we came here, and I don't care whether they hear us or not."
"You wanton wench.." he muttered, grabbing her. "You really need a good spanking, and what comes afterward."
"Mmmmmm." She cooed, "Afterward. I like the sound of that."
As he pulled the shirt over his head, she grabbed it and dragged him over to the bed, pushing him down and sitting on him, laughing uproariously as he struggled to free himself. Alicia knew he would really wallop her if she teased him, so she made him earn his freedom. Getting free at last, he maneuvered the giggling girl across his lap, hauling up her woolen skirt and stripping down the wispy panties to reveal a bottom he'd been in love with since first glance. A hard smack of his palm was the first of many, each stinging swat drawing a yelp or squeal from Alicia and turning the creamy white skin a wonderful rosy pink. True to form, Greg took her to the edge, stopping at the perfect moment. They feverishly undressed each other, falling together on the marvelous huge feather bed, coupling with an intensity that would make a wooden Indian blush.
It was cold. Alicia squirmed, trying to find the blanket, to haul it across her naked body. Her arms didn't work. Attempting to roll over, she discovered that her legs apparently weren't functional either. Something lay across her face, smooth and slick, and part of it was in her mouth. Spitting, she shook her head, only to discover that whatever was in her mouth was fastened there. She tried to scream, but was prevented by the thing in her mouth, which tasted rubbery. For a moment, she thought she was blind, her eyes staring into stygian blackness, but after a time she perceived just the tiniest hint of light, falling on the glistening surface of gray stone, as if the source was a long way off. As her senses returned, she came to the realization that she was shackled face up on some kind of stone table, spread-eagled and naked.
"Greg!" she tried to yell, producing only a muffled "ggg!"
"If this is his idea of a joke," she fumed silently, "I'll fix his wagon."
She had no idea how long she lay there, her backside growing colder by the minute from the stone beneath. Every second increased her fear, knowing that Greg wouldn't do anything to frighten her this badly. But if not Greg, who? She wondered, shivering and beginning to cry. A grating sound, accompanied by a yellowish shaft of light, broke the silence. In the dim illumination, Alicia saw three hooded figures enter her chamber, which she could now see was large, made of carved stone, and designed for evil purposes. Dark wood and wrought-iron appliances lurked in the shadowy distance, infernal machines designed to push humans into the realm of painful insanity, and beyond. As they came toward her, their faces invisible, she tried to scream again, a soul- wrenching primal howl of fear that died stillborn behind the gag in her mouth. Eyes wide, she writhed from side to side as their large, rough hands roamed over her white body, in curious exploration. Unable to scream or to resist, she wept in humiliated frustration, shamed and debased. Taking positions at head and foot, two of the three grasped her wrists and ankles as the third unlocked her fetters. Expertly, they turned her over on her face, re-fastening her in place. Twisting her head from side to side, Alicia frantically tried to see what was happening, at last seeing one of the hooded three take a multi-thonged whip from the wall. Running it through his hands, he stepped to her side. As the strands cascaded through the bony fingers, the frightened blonde could see the braiding of the black, stringy laces. She watched, horrified as the apparition turned to a larger figure that had appeared behind him. With dark, wavy hair, mustache and goatee, he appeared satanic. Taking the proffered whip, he ran the strands thoughtfully down her back and over the sensuous curve of her bottom.
"Very nice." He commented. "Yes. We'll start with this side. There will be plenty of time to deal with the other side, later. Oh, yes, later. Much, much later."
The demonic entity swished the scourge, then quickly whipped it down on her bare bottom, twisting his wrist slightly to fan out the laces. Alicia yelled as two dozen hornets stung her simultaneously. The whip fell again, and again, burning like the fires of hell. Writhing under the lash, Alicia struggled to be heard, in vain. As the fiery whip consumed her, she screamed, and screamed, and screamed.
Someone was shaking her. The scream finally burst from her mouth, echoing in the firelit room. Greg was shaking her, sitting bolt upright beside her in the huge canopied bed. She pulled away, raising a now-free hand to strike at her assailant. Catching it easily, he imprisoned both wrists, shaking her again.
"Sweetheart!" he yelled in her face, finally getting recognition, "It's only a dream! It's me! Wake up!"
Breathing like a winded racehorse, Alicia took in her surroundings, the familiar carved wood of the antique bedroom furniture, the heavily patterned wallpaper, the fireplace, now just glowing embers in the pre- dawn darkness.
"Oh, God, Greg!" she panted, eyes wild in remembered fear, "It was so real!" They had me tied down, and, and...," dissolving in tears, she clung to him, sobbing as the memory faded.
Greg smoked a cigarette while Alicia snuggled next to him, finally going back to sleep. He watched the smoke rise nearly arrow-straight in the stuffy bedroom, disappearing in the curtained canopy overhead. Stubbing out the smoke, he nodded off, Alicia's beautiful blonde head still resting on his chest.
The white table linen seemed to swim in her sight, making her sway a bit. Putting a hand to her head, Alicia said,
"I - I don't feel too well. Probably the wine."
"Maybe we should call it a night.." Greg said solicitously, obviously disappointed. He and Mrs. Coburn were really hitting it off, despite the age differential.
"That's all right, honey." Alicia said, standing up. "You stay and enjoy yourself. I'll take some aspirin and lie down. Just don't stay up too late, okay?" she finished, giving him a peck on the cheek.
"`Kay." He said, kissing her hand before he let it go.
Mrs. Coburn watched Alicia climb the stairs, sipping at her wine before turning back to the young man before her.
"She's a lovely woman."
"Yeah," Greg agreed, "Thanks."
"Is she... obedient?" Mrs. Coburn asked, tilting her head slightly, the sparkle in her eyes more pronounced.
Greg's head came up more quickly than he intended, producing a small upward motion at the corner of Mrs. Coburn's mouth. Had the woman heard their spanking play, or possibly guessed?
"Umm, yeah, she's a good kid." Greg said easily, looking into those hypnotic green eyes.
Muriel Coburn waited a discreet minute, her eyes toying with him.
"How about you?" she asked pointedly, leaning forward just a bit, the firelight glittering on her diamond necklace,
"Are you ....tractable?"
Her hand reached out to cover his, a deliberate movement that gave him time to withdraw, but told him he didn't need to. He didn't, and was quite surprised at the warmth of Muriel's hand. It was softer than he expected, and also firmer than he imagined. The question still echoed in his ears, but she had taken him by surprise. A slight blush gave his innermost feelings away.
"Me?" he said, defensively. "I - uhh," his eyes broke away from hers as he looked down at their hands. Glancing up, he could hardly miss the satisfied look on her face.
The woman circled him curiously, glittering green eyes taking in every line and angle of his naked body. She was the kind of woman that makes a man's loins ache with desire; from the flowing mane of shining copper hair to spike-heeled laced knee-boots, each sensuous curve spoke of depraved delights. Full breasts strained at the top of a wasp-waisted leather corset, which ended just above an alluring bottom, free of any restraint. Garter clips held dusky stockings in place, those sheer appliances that so enhanced the natural pulse-quickening curves of well- sculpted legs. Bare arms, so very shapely from shoulder to nicely padded forearm ended in graceful hands with blood-red nails. Greg's eyes followed as the vision paced slowly alongside him. She was so beautiful that for a moment, he wasn't fully aware of his predicament. He was, in fact, tied securely bent over a wooden contraption of some kind, with waist, wrists, ankles and knees tightly fastened in place, so that the only thing that could move was his head. It was then he noticed that the vision of delight carried a nasty-looking leather quirt: a short, braided whip about three feet long. As she paced back and forth, her heels clicking ominously on the flagstone floor, she ran the quirt lightly through her hands, as if savoring the feel of it, and planning where and how it would be used. Greg could see that the room he was in was made of stone, a damp, gray stone. Flickering torches adorned the walls, making the woman's striking silhouette dance in the shadows.
"What are you going to do to me?" he asked, his voice croaking with tension.
"Silence!" she admonished, slapping the quirt against her boot.
"Who are you?" he demanded, more frightened now. He knew who she was, or more correctly, had been. The woman before him would probably have been a dead ringer for Muriel Coburn - thirty years earlier.
With a look that would have frozen red-hot lava, the woman stalked over to him, taking something from a shelf nearby. Pulling up his head by the hair, she forced a leather ball into his mouth, in spite of his struggles. After it was fastened, he found he couldn't speak, and it was, in fact, hard to breathe. Mumbling in protest, Greg's eyes opened wide as his pulse shot up. The woman had come to stand next to him; was raising the quirt. With a look of supreme satisfaction, she laid it across his bare hindquarters, hard.
He had always been on the delivering end of a spanking, and although he wondered now and then what it would be like, he had never experienced the receiving end. The first stroke brought complete astonishment. Feeling the braided leather bite deep into his bottom, he howled against the gag, disappointed in his inability to convey the pain he felt. Again and again the quirt struck, burning its way across his backside and legs. In mute misery, he begged and pleaded, tormented by those wicked emerald eyes that glinted with pleasure as she whipped him over and over again.
"NO! Please! Stop, please! Muriel! For God's sake, please!"
The words came barreling out of him as he sat up, jolting Alicia out of her slumber.
"Greg, what is it, honey?" she exclaimed, holding on to him, frightened herself by his panic.
"Oh, Christ, what a dream!" he moaned, shaking his head.
"You, too?" she said, remembering how vivid and scary her own had been.
"Yeah, a real dilly!" he panted, smiling wanly. Kissing her on the forehead, he hugged her to him.
"What do you say we get out of here, huh?" he suggested.
"We'll lose our payment...." Alicia reminded him.
"I don't care. Do you want another nightmare?" he countered.
"Stay for breakfast?" she asked.
"Unh - Unh." He mumbled, remembering the glittering green eyes of their hostess, and shivering in spite of himself.
"No spankings for a while, okay?" she suggested.
"You bet." He agreed, starting to get dressed.
Muriel Coburn watched from her third-floor bedroom as the car sped toward the cliff road. Mortals were so easy, she thought. Their dreams so easily invaded; a seed of an idea here, a suggestion there, and they tortured themselves. Smiling, she hung her well-worn leather quirt back in the armoire, and went to make a cup of tea.