He lay gasping. The beating had stopped .. at last. Ka-Lan had no idea how many agonising strikes he’d had. His eyes ran with tears of pain .. his cheeks streaked with salty streams .. cold on his burning face. His head swam. But … at last .. it was over.
A dozen? More. Two dozen? Hit breath-takingly hard. Stinging like hell. The searing pains that had jolted through his backside .. viciously burning everything in their path .. they had taken his breath away. On fire. Stretched out over the wood. His heart pounded furiously into the pile under his heaving chest.
The hands holding down his arms had released him. But he hadn’t the strength to rise. Panting like a feverish dog. Burning up, running with sweat. The sweat of agony .. like his bare arse was sitting in burning oil.
Her voice. Harsh. “Change over.”
Snapped out. Ka-Lan’s fevered brain tried to compute what those words had meant.
“And lift the pig’s face. This time I want to enjoy his pain.”
This time? A hand gruffly twisted in his hair. His head yanked up. It was that burly slavemaster who had already thrashed the living daylights out of Ka-Lan’s bare arse. Who sadistically had him screaming out with each searing blow. Now, as ordered, he was holding up Ka-Lan’s face. For HER to see.
At the end of the log-pile, the twin-sister sneered back at him. Lording it over his pain. Dominating over his suffering. But Ka-Lan didn’t give a toss about the shame. His tears. His face burning. Nothing he could do to hold it back.
“Lashed so he can’t sit down for a week.”
That was what the brother had agreed to. The burning agonies in Ka-Lan’s backside would bruise. Inflame, swell up. Every step he took would bring tears to his eyes. Her brother had ordered that his sorry-arse stayed put. Remained in the house .. just in case ….. At whose cost?
“Whipped till he can’t walk.”
Ka-Lan shuddered to think how ungainly he’d clawed himself off this pile of wood. Painfully slow. Every twitch giving her the satisfaction. Every movement jarring through his muscled back .. searing pains juddering down his legs. Proof that she’d lost out to her brother. But won over her slave.
After a long triumphant look into his tortured face, Ka-Lan saw her glance beyond his head. Over the length of his muscled back, running with pains. Coated with fevered sweat. He felt her glance focus on someone else.
It was beginning again! The guards had swapped over. The other fucker stood at the other end. Fresh and strong. Eager to please. Out to show he could out-do his mate. While his buddy held up Ka-Lan’s face. For her to gloat. For that fucking sister to enjoy his pain.
It was starting all over again. Another round of will-breaking pain. Thrashed to crush his spirit. Punished because her fucking brother had thwarted her evil plans. Ka-Lan’s hide had been spared the mines. And got subjected to this.
He saw her snarl over the length of his sweat-drenched back. Growling at the other guard.
“And hold nothing back.”
He wouldn’t. He wouldn’t dare.