The Fifth Ch. 07byOneWhoAdores©
This is the 7th part of a 12 part tale of a Lady and her stable of slaves
7. Slaves' Slave
Jared was 'deposited' and left without a word by Edward in the basement of the manor. He remained naked as his clothes had not been brought along, either through an oversight by Edward or as a deliberate display of pique. Or, Jared wondered, as possibly to more starkly emphasize his new circumstance and status. He was still dazed by all that had just occurred. That Deanna might not be pleased, and even be furious at his unexpected reappearance in her life was something he had accepted, and for which he had tried to be mentally prepared. He would have been devastated but not entirely surprised if she had immediately insisted that he get out and never come back. But she had not done that. She had made it a point that she would not tell him or force him to leave, even as she made it very clear that she did not want and would not have anything whatsoever to do with him. He would have to make that decision to go himself. But the conditions under which he would be allowed to stay, if he so decided, were something beyond his direst imaginings. He would be a slave, not to the only person to whom he would ever be willing or desire to be enslaved, but instead to four strangers, men who themselves all had the privilege of which Deanna had just vowed that HE would never again be granted ... to be HER slave.
This was definitely not something that Jared would ever have conceived of wanting. There was nothing remotely romantic, erotic or even caring about it. It was purely and solely enforced and unquestioning servitude and labor for people to whom he had no wish to be subject. She had said that he could end it at any time, even before it began, by simply leaving. But it was not so simple. To do so would forever sever any dreams he might have of being with her, and he just couldn't bring himself to do that. Not again. Not without trying. If this was the condition she set for him to have any place in her life, however minuscule and debased, he would grab it and try to prove himself to her. If he failed, and if she continued to want nothing more from him than to be out of her life for good, it would not be for the lack of his determined effort. And maybe, just maybe ...
Jared banished and walled off that last thought deep within him. It would not help his situation to have such thoughts so readily evident. He began to more seriously contemplate his lot. He could understand why Edward would be so angry, feeling both betrayed and played and himself now subject to his Lady's displeasure. That had never been Jared's intention. Indeed he had never truly planned for any such return and had honestly tried to resist when as a bolt out of the blue it had first been proposed. But he had been overcome by Edward's gentle persuasion and his own deeply buried but overwhelming yearnings and dreams.
He wondered as well about the other three 'slaves'. From Edward's blog he knew names, but whether these were their real names he couldn't be sure. Jared suspected though that Edward's description of them and their duties and life here were probably reasonably true. How would they all react to him? Would they hold him in contempt for what he had done to their Lady? And to Edward? Or even worse, would they view him as a threat and do everything they could to drive him away? He shuddered at the many possibilities even as he again resolved to try to see it all through.
To calm himself he began to survey his surroundings. In his blog Edward had described it as more of a playroom, and in truth it really wasn't the classic S&M dungeon. There were a few items that did reflect the manor's nature. In the center of the room there was a winch with several hanging chains, surrounded by a number of floor and ceiling hooks. In one far corner there was a four foot square steel kennel like cage, and in the other corner there was a pair of wooden stocks. What was conspicuous by their absence however was the lack of any evidence of whips, crops, paddles or canes. Thankfully, as Jared remembered, this had not been one of Deanna's particular interests. There was also a scarcity of places to sit. Except for one small wooden stool there was only one large leather easy chair that was on a small slightly raised platform against the near wall. There could be little doubt for whose use that chair was reserved. With no idea how long he would be waiting before someone came for him, Jared sat down on the wooden stool.
With increasing anxiety he sat in silence as one hour passed onto well over two. Finally he heard the door above open and he jumped off the chair and made his way to stand in the middle of the room as four men with Edward in the lead came down the steps. They paused at the bottom to regard him, and then led again by Edward they walked forward slowly, stopping several feet from him, the other three spreading out behind Edward to form a small semicircle. They continued to stare at him, their faces for the most part impassive. His ongoing nakedness was now so much more utterly humiliating under the stern scrutiny of these clothed unknown men than it had ever been before Deanna. He felt that they were looking at him as if he was some repulsive insect that had to be crushed. The silence stretched on for over a minute before Edward coldly spoke.
"It would be best for everyone involved of course if you decided right now to just take your things and go." He let that sentiment hang for a moment. "It is what everyone, most of all the Lady wants." he continued. As once again there was no response from Jared, he went on. "But the Lady has also made it explicitly clear that none of us are allowed or should do anything to physically force you to go, and of course ... we obey." Another long pause before he again proceeded. "But as she also declared to you, there are strict conditions that you must meet for as long as you persist in remaining. You can only stay here solely and simply as a slave, to be used as such by each and all of us in front of you. You will answer to any and all of us with unquestioning, immediate and total obedience, and the only reward you will ever be granted is to be allowed to proceed onto you next ordered task. Any actual or even perceived dereliction will result in necessary correction, which as none of us here wish to waste our time or energy in corporeal activities, will instead be meted out by having you spend the very little time that will be allotted to you for rest at night be spent in some of the ... accommodations ... you see down here." he added nodding toward the cage and then the stocks. He again waited another moment to let that be absorbed.
"Your life here will be one purely of work and drudgery." he continued. "There will be no attempt or desire by any of us to have you find any comfort or solace. While you undoubtedly will hear us call each other by our names, you will only refer to each of us as 'Sir' ... or in one particular case," he added nodding at Abel, "as 'Ma'am'. Unfortunately," he went on, "it may be unavoidable that your presence might from time to time cross the path of the Lady. You will make every effort to evade those possible times, but should they occur you will immediately cast your eyes down and away from her and try to make yourself as insignificant and invisible as possible. Under no circumstances should you ever attempt to address her. In her eyes you do not exist, and that is how you will act."
Edward took a deep breath and sighed. This had all been very distasteful to him and he wanted nothing more than for it all to be over. He would never be able to forgive himself for how he had failed his Lady. Still, he could only pray that this part of it could end now. "So these are the conditions that must be met for you to remain. If they are not then you will be punished. But of course you are free to leave ... forever ... at any time. Would you like to leave now?" he concluded hopefully.
Jared called on every bit of inner strength he had within him. There was really no choice for him to make, at least not yet.
"No Sir." he answered softly.
"I was afraid of that." Edward sighed. "Alright then we'll do it the hard way, although I strongly suspect it going to be much harder for you than for us. Follow me." With that Edward turned and started up the stairs. The others made no move, but Jared had been given an order, and he now had no choice but to immediately obey.
The Lady had indeed made it very clear to them, when they had been gathered to her, of what she wanted and expected of the 'new circumstances', even as it was not entirely clear yet to herself. She had declared that Jared was to be used but not physically abused, and she had meant that in more ways than one. He was to be worked however, and worked hard, and treated and regarded at all times as nothing more than a slave. Their slave. They were to make sure that she never had anything to do with him, and that she have as little contact with him as possible. She left the details and any extensive explanations for all of this, as far as he knew them, to Edward. She left little uncertainty for any of them though of how she desired it all to end. She wanted this new slave gone, but the decision to leave had to come from him.
Edward led Jared up to the first floor and to the back of the house to a small 8 by 8 foot room adjacent to the laundry area. Except for some storage of laundry supplies stacked in the corner, it had basically been unused. Now there was a small mattress on the floor with a pair of folded sheets and one blanket on top of it. The only other piece of furniture in the room was a small wooden stool, like the one in the basement, on top of which was a folded pair of gray trousers, a gray tee shirt, a pair of white socks, and a pair of white briefs. At the foot of the stool was a pair of old sneakers.
"This is where you'll stay at night for those few hours when you're not working." Edward informed him. "We were able to put together some old clothes for you to wear until we get you some others. As a slave you have nothing and you will only be allowed to use and wear what is provided to you. The clothes you came in will be given back to you only when you finally decide to leave ... hopefully sooner rather than later." He paused as if hoping that Jared might take him up on that offer right away. When he did not, Edward continued. "We all meet in the kitchen every morning at 6 o'clock. Be there before us. You'll get your work assignments then." Edward paused once again as if he wanted to say something more. "I would get as much rest as you can tonight. There won't be much of it for you from now on." With that he turned and left, closing the door behind him.
Jared stood numbly, alone and unmoving in the room for several minutes. He wasn't sure what to do. About any of it. He finally went over and put on the pair of briefs. It wouldn't do to try to sleep in the rest of the clothes, the only ones they had left him. He then put the sheets and the blanket on the mattress, noting the lack of a pillow. The only light in the room was a bare one in the ceiling. After a few more minutes he went and turned that out, plunging the small room into darkness. He made his way carefully over to the mattress and lay down, covering himself. Try as he might though, he was unable to fall asleep. Too many thoughts and fears roiled through his mind. How could he do this, and more importantly did he really want to? They were all making it abundantly clear that they would do everything to 'encourage' him to go. But he just had to stay, to do anything and everything that it took, until he was absolutely certain that there was no longer any hope.
He tossed and turned uncomfortably for how many hours he couldn't judge, finally catching a few snatches of sleep along the way. From one of these he snapped awake and bolted up to turn on the light. His wristwatch had been one of the items that had been forfeit with his clothing so he had no idea of the time. But he had been given his first order when Edward had left and he didn't want there to be any chance of failing it. He put on the rest of the clothes that had been left him, all a little big on him although the sneakers pinched, and he then ventured out into the still darkened hallway. He left the door open so that light could filter out, and started his way down the hall. About halfway along he came across a bathroom and went in to relieve himself. There was no telling when and if he would be allowed to do so later. He then made his way to the end of the hall which opened into the kitchen. He turned on the light there and was relieved to see a clock on the wall which read 5:15. He was on time.
About 15 minutes later one of the other slaves hurried into the room. It was the slim, youngest appearing on with the long blond hair. Jared estimated that he was probably in his twenties. The young man seemed startled and even somewhat embarrassed when he saw Jared, but said nothing and immediately set about his duties of making the morning meal, apparently first for the other slaves.
Jared stood in the middle of the room not knowing what to do, and an awkward silence continued. At times he had to step out of the way as the other man moved back and forth to get items for his meal. Finally, a bit exasperated, the young man spoke.
"You're just in my way here. Why don't you go stand over there until Edward comes."
"Yes Sir." Jared responded and moved over to stand in the corner that the young man had indicated. About 20 minutes later, almost precisely at 6, two other men entered the room, the large muscular one wearing work clothes, and another somewhat older one wearing a suit. A minute later Edward in his Butler uniform arrived and they all greeted each other quietly. Then, except for the young man, they all sat down at the long kitchen table along the side wall.
The young man brought over platters of scrambled eggs, bacon, and buttered toast that he had prepared, along with carafes of coffee. He then sat down to join them as they all ate.
"I've got a late meeting in the city this afternoon negotiating the movie rights to the Lady's second book, Abel," the man in the suit said, "so I probably won't get back until well after eight."
"I'll have some dinner saved and put aside for you, Michael." the young man replied.
"How are the negotiations going?" Edward inquired.
"Very well so far." Michael replied. "With the very nice box office success of the film of her first book I have little doubt that the Lady is going to reap quite the financial reward for the second."
"As she should." Edward concluded.
The four men continued to eat and converse quietly as Jared stood, completely ignored, in the corner. He himself had not eaten anything since breakfast the day before in his own apartment and his stomach now grumbled as he watched them eat, and he would have died for a cup of coffee. Finally, after about 30 minutes as some of them were making motions to get up and leave, Edward turned to him.
"You, come here." he ordered.
Jared made his way quickly over to stand before the still seated Edward. "Yes Sir?" he responded.
"You will work for Thomas this morning." Edward stated indicating the man in the work clothes. "And then this afternoon you will be under Belle's supervision." Jared knew from the blog that one of them, probably Abel, dressed up as a maid and did all of the housework in such attire. "After that," Edward continued, "I will inform you of what you night time duties will entail."
With that Edward stood up and turned his attention back to Abel. "The lady doesn't want to be woken until nine this morning, Abel." he said as he rose. "She had a rather tiring and irksome day yesterday" he continued, glancing pointedly at Jared, and then back to Abel. "So have her breakfast ready about 9:30 if you please."
"Of course, Edward." Abel replied. He then stepped forward carrying a plate with two pieces of buttered toast that had been left over on the table, along with a cup of black coffee. "Could you let him take a minute to eat and drink this, Edward?" He asked indicating Jared. "We don't want him passing out on us."
"No, that wouldn't do." Edward concurred dryly. Turning back to Jared. "Hurry up with that then. I'm sure that Thomas wants to get you to work."
Jared took the offered plate gratefully, and standing there rapidly consumed the two pieces of cold toast. He then quickly drank the lukewarm black coffee, which he always preferred with cream. Oh well, he sighed internally, beggars ... no, make that slaves ... can't be choosers. In less than a minute he was done.
'You come along then." the one called Thomas then said irritably, and turned and strode out of the room. Jared put the plate and cup down and hurried to follow.
They went outside and first to a shed where Thomas took out a shovel and handed it to Jared, and then led him to the back of the manor, much of which appeared to be set aside as a garden. Thomas indicated a six foot high, twenty foot long stone wall at the far side, with nothing in front of it but a few bushes.
"The lady wants a row of rose bushes along the entire length of that wall." Thomas informed him. "I want you to dig up those bushes and then dig a two foot wide, two foot deep trench along the entire length so that I can plant the new roses there." Thomas glared at him. "Do you understand?"
Thomas grunted, then "I'm going into town to buy the rose bushes and the necessary top soil and fertilizer. See that this is all done and ready when I get back." He turned and walked away without even acknowledging Jared's second "Yes Sir."
Jared took the shovel and set to work. A few moments later he saw Thomas driving away in a large pick up truck, and a minute after that Michael driving off in a sedan. Attacking the few bushes first he found that removing them was far more difficult than he would have thought as the roots were deeply embedded and entwined and he only had the shovel to try to cut through them. It took him over two hours to finally clear the three bushes. He then began digging the ordered trench. This also proved to be far more laborious than he had anticipated as there were more than a few large underground rocks encountered that had to be dug around and pulled out, all making the going much slower than he would have hoped.
Well past what he thought must be mid morning he saw Edward come out and drive away in the large Town Car that had brought him to the manor the day before. He rested for a moment and looked at his hands which were already blistered and raw. He had not been given any work gloves. He still had about half of the trench to dig and he was already tired and aching. But he couldn't give in this early and this easily. He set back to work, his muscles and back groaning and his hands burning.
About an hour and a half later Thomas returned in the pick up truck and came to inspect. Jared still had about three feet of trench to go to the end of the wall.
"I thought you'd be well done by now." Thomas complained. "You must have been slacking off quite a bit. Well, it's about a half an hour to noon so it looks like you're going to have to miss lunch while you finish this up. And when you're done with the trench, go get the bags of soil and fertilizer from the back of the truck and bring them here. And then bring the rose bushes over as well." Without another word Thomas then turned and went into the house.
Fortunately the last three feet of trench had no rocks and he was able to finish it in about 15 minutes. As he did so he saw Edward return and go into the house carrying two large shopping bags. Jared went around to the garage to the pick up truck and found the back cab filled with about a dozen individual rose bushes and bags of topsoil and fertilizer. There were at least twenty bags of both, each weighing forty pounds. He sighed and then began carrying them one at a time to the back, which took him close to an hour to finish. He then started bringing back the rose bushes, which while not as heavy were much more bulky, and he couldn't help but be pricked often by the thorns. He had only carried three of them back when Thomas returned.