I do not scream when they bind my wrists
Although the cord cuts me
The men step back and I see the villagers
My mother covering her face
My father's leather apron scorched from his forge
My brothers, angry
My sisters, weeping
Zachary stands among them
He will not look at me
As they strip off my clothes
He keeps his eyes downcast
I want to accuse him, to blame him
Why did he not press me more?
Why did he let me refuse him?
One of the men grins at me
An unpleasant leer, too familiar
He by the lord's order was my guard
After the lottery, in the dungeon
Desperate, I pleaded with him
To free me, or failing that, to take me
Ravished, I would be no use to them
The bars cold iron against my body
My hands outreached, begging
Speaking words I'd never said
Crudity to make my soul blanch
Said nonetheless, groveling
Revealing myself to him
Until he came into my cell
Unhandsome, unshaven, unwashed,
Yet I embraced him as though
He were the most noble of princes
Rough hands upon me
Pushing me to my knees
The smell of stale beer on his breath
His laugh the shrill chuckle of a rat
He says he needs to be made ready
Shuddering, I do as he wishes
Hot pungent flesh filling my mouth
Loathing myself yet eager
Grateful to this horrid man
His hands in my hair, painful
Choking me, grunting his pleasure
He does not withdraw
I cannot pull back, I cannot breathe
He holds my head, thrusting faster
Until my mouth is flooded
I empty myself onto the floor
Sobbing, spitting to rid myself
Of the wretched taste of him
Looking down on me he laughs
Calls me a fool for thinking that he
Would risk his life for a tumble
Or disobey the lord's command
He leaves me alone in the dark
I claw at the walls but find nothing
No freedom, no light, no hope
Now I stand naked against the post
Arms high, wrists bound
Before the eyes of my family
My neighbors, my friends
Zachary still looks away
Does he remember, as I do,
The dances and fairs?
Does he remember, as I do,
The moonlight walks, the kisses
The talk of marriage?
Nell stands beside him
No virgin, she
Her smile is cold, her hand possessive
Upon his arm.
They strike the drums and sound the horn
And now I scream, it is all true
No blessed awakening from this nightmare
No sudden discovery of error
No knight bold and brave to rescue me
Only my brothers moving forward
Stopped at sword's point by the lord's men
My screams counterpoint the drums and horns
Calling you, heretofore unseen
Except as a shape against the moon
Or a gout of flame in the sky
Your signature left in the fields
In the charred, ravaged, half-eaten
Remains of our herds
The call sounded, they fall back
Hiding and leaving me to my fate
My wrists bleed from my struggles
The post abrading my skin
I recall a rabbit I saw once in a snare
Chewing off its own foot for freedom
I would do the same but my bonds are too high
Your winged shadow falls over me
My fear departs, again like a rabbit
Who, seeing the growing shadow of the hawk
Knows only relief that at last it is over
I hope that you will be swift
Will it be the fire?
Or will I feel your talons rend my flesh?
Your breath is hot though not burning
Your scent is leather and cinnamon
I raise my head and see your eyes
Golden as your hoard must be
Your scales as maroon as the blood
I expect to soon feel flowing
You regard me as a cat does a mouse
In legend your kind is immense
You must be young for a horse is larger
Despite your youth you are fierce
Sleek and deadly, of lethal beauty
I am struck by awe and dread
And anger! I want to cry out
Why? Why must you do this?
You would not answer if I spoke
You sniff me, curious, as if you do not know
What strange beast this is, that cannot flee
I cringe away from you to no avail
Your scales softer than kidskin
As you nuzzle my wounds
Smelling the virgin blood offered to you
Your tongue flicks out
Long and black, tasting
Sliding over my breasts
The forked ends teasing both nipples
Before diving over my belly
Lower still to my thighs
And the place between them
I am horrified at sudden desire
Stronger than that shared with Zachary
In hurried gropings behind the barn
Your tongue moves onward
I have no screams left to scream
And can only stare as my injuries
Heal beneath your inhuman kiss
With ivory fangs you bite
Severing the cords that hold me
Not touching my skin
Such delicacy is unexpected
I do not run, though I would not get far
You raise a taloned paw and bat at me
Again like a cat, playful
Playful but strong and purposeful
Knocking me to hands and knees
Before I can rise I feel your warmth
Moving over me and into me
Parting me painfully
And now I find a scream
To my shame it is of passion
Your wings enfold me like velvet
Your teeth nip lightly at the nape of my neck
I buck to meet your smooth thrusts
Like a mare to a stallion
I can hear your low growls
Echoed by my own cries
As I hopelessly yeild myself to you
Your forepaws lock around my waist
And still filling me, you leap skyward
The ground falls away beneath us
And I think to myself through my daze of desire
How glad I am to have stayed pure
How fortunate to have been selected
As offering to you, my love
The End

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