tagNovels and NovellasThe Harem Ch. 01

The Harem Ch. 01


This is an introduction to characters and surrondings--no sex. Stay tuned for that in the next chapters.

The first sun rose slowly, glowing fiercely red against the ghostly white sky. The second sun followed it quickly, a pale yellow orb stopping halfway between the horizon and the first sun. The combined light shone gently on the green and blue landscape, waking the flowers and wildlife from their sleep.

The beams of light continued across the horizon, blending together as they reached the high wall surrounding the compound. Twenty feet tall and nearly as thick, it stretched as far as the eye could see to the east and the west, its rounded edges disappearing into the distance. The entrance door as thick, reinforced throughout with titanium, requiring more than three dozen men to open. Escape or entry through it was impossible.

Inside, the long road wound through the village with its neat and tidy houses. Side paths branched off into smaller communities, each devoted to a special purpose. The bakers and their helpers had been up for hours, preparing the daily bread used by every person in the compound from the smallest child to the High Lord himself. The merchants would wake soon and open their doors, the blacksmiths would continue their repair work on the weapons used by the army during their last bout with the intergalactic foreigners. The only community that would not rise with the rest was the pleasure community, whose work was just ending.

Between the village and the High Lord's manor, the grounds opened again, bursting with trees and flowers. Those native to the land grew alongside those brought back by the scientific group that accompanied the army whenever it went off-planet. Black faded to gray then to white, pastel blue blending into pale lavender before shifting dramatically to tangerine. Willows provided shady spots, while poplars flanked the road like sentries. At the end of the path lay the High Lord's manor.

Its rooms too numerous to count, it rose from the flat land like a white vision, five stories of timber and brick. Inside, halls opened into libraries and parlors, ballrooms and formal dining rooms, conservatories and stillrooms. Its attics were warrens of treasures, each with its own caretaker. It was the third floor though that held the High Lord's true treasures, and was guarded as fiercely as the kingdom as a whole.

The third floor contained the High Lord's harem.

At the moment, the harem housed only a handful of women, less than a dozen. The oldest were more mentors to the younger women than companions of the High Lord, being older than him and past childbearing age. In truth, the High Lord considered them aunts and respected them as such, deferring to their judgment in matters of the harem. Cyrenia and Kallisana ruled the others in his stead, enforcing what rules he did have and providing advice when necessary.

The remaining three ranged in age from twenty seven to thirty five, and had all been in the High Lord's harem for at least four years. During that time, none had conceived a child, and as the years passed all grew fearful that they would end up as Cyrenia and Kallisana had. It was a comfortable life, but none would deny that they wanted a more substantial existence.

On this morning, Helenia arose before the others, stretching her pale arms over her head. Her pale red hair tangled around her lithe body, and glowed against the pale blue sheets. Her lashes fluttered open over eyes that matched the sheets, and she purred low in her throat. The High Lord had graced her bed last night, and as always had left her satisfied. Her muscles ached pleasantly, and she smiled to herself.

Across the hall, Analyndia whimpered in her sleep and rolled over on her stomach. Her short gold hair blended with her gold skin, glowing against the jet black sheets. Her boyish figure sprawled across the bed, twisting a few times before settling into sleep again.

Tansazia groaned even as she opened her eyes, the green iris identical in color to the grass that rippled over the land. Honey colored curls swirled over her rose tinged shoulders, flirting with the pale pink nipples that stood erect in the cool air. Pulling the rose colored sheets tighter around her slight figure, she grumbled into the pillow, determined to sleep for just a while longer.

When the high pitched scream rang through the halls, she only groaned again and pulled the pillow over her head.

Cyrenia rolled from her bed, nipping a robe from the foot of her bed. There was no reason for such a racket at so early an hour. If the High Lord heard of it, or Bewethria forbid, heard it, there would be the Ancients to pay. Outside her door, she saw Kallisana hurrying towards her, and together they made their way to the large room that served as the harem's parlor.

The screams continued, joined by fits of cursing that caused Cyrenia to raise her eyebrows in mild surprise. She hadn't heard such vulgarities in more years than she could remember, nor had she heard the language they where being screamed in. Whoever was making such noise was from one of the Explorer stations, so called because when the Earth had self destructed some two hundred years before, the handful of survivors had scattered across the galaxy, setting up stations in the hopes of finding another stable planet. In the last two hundred years, the inhabitants of such stations had dwindled to a few handfuls.

The army must have brought her back when they returned two days ago. What possible reason could they have for bringing her here? As the screams continued and rose in volume, Cyrenia wrinkled her brow. And why hasn't Ikthyer come to see what the noise is?

As they entered the room already flooded with early morning sunlight, both women froze and gaped. Whatever they had been expecting, it wasn't what they were faced with.

She was short, as all of the remaining pure blood humans were, a mere five and a half feet. Her hair was as black as night, and flowed like rain down to her hips, which were full and lush. Even through the dirty smock she wore, it was evident that she had breasts to match her hips. Her face was a marvel of genetics--wide violet eyes with thick lashes, a tiny upturned nose, full lips.

It was very obvious why she had been sent to the High Lord's harem.

Stepping forward, Cyrenia slapped the girl--she couldn't have been more than eighteen--across the face once, then twice. The shock caused the girl to cease screaming, and Cyrenia spoke quickly in the girl's language. "You have no reason to be afraid. No one here will hurt you."

The girl opened her mouth, gasping in a breath, then burst into tears. The guards let go of her quickly, and Cyrenia and Kallisana led her to a low cushion, murmuring soothingly. They were not too old to remember the fear of being taken from home and being delivered to a strange land. The guards exited the room silently, shutting the heavy oak door behind them.

"Are you calm enough to tell us your name now, child?" Kallisana stroked the girl's hair gently, while Cyrenia fluttered around her, draping light blankets, and fluffing pillows. Years ago, Cyrenia had taught the language she called English to her, and now when they desired private communication it was the language they used.

"Magdalyn." The girl gasped in another breath, letting it shudder out. Grasping Cyrenia's hand, she whispered, "Please. Why am I here? What is going to happen to me?"

Cyrenia smiled gently. "You have nothing to worry about. You are in the household of the High Lord of Lasnandia. You are now a member of his harem."

Both women said quick prayers to Bewethria as Magdalyn's eyes widened and she let out another piercing scream.

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