Sunday, December 1, 2013

Eye of the Beholder - PART ONE

Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance of characters to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental. The author holds exclusive rights to this work. Unauthorized duplication is prohibited.

Warning: Explicit sex. Anal Sex. Rimming. Domination. Abuse. Hand Job. Blow Job.

Thespiae, Greece            

             “Ajanthis, your hounds are shit!” Narcissus smirked over his shoulder at the stalking youth beside him. It had been Ajanthis’ suggestion to try his hounds out on today’s stag hunt and just as Narcissus had feared, they were not up to the task. Already now, the hounds had managed to flush two hares and allow three does to skitter right past them. Well-bred, they definitely were, from Narcissus’ uncle’s kennel, but Ajanthis’ reliance on those Northern slaves to train his Greek hounds was laughable. Now, had Ajanthis gone ahead and bought some of those shaggy, leggy, Northern hounds the trainers offered to bring along with them and train… well, Narcissus would have loved to see those hounds up against his. It was rumored they could bring down the biggest game, yet still catch hares on speed alone. Narcissus dared not believe the rumors until he had seen it himself in person. Oh, Ajanthis…
            “Fine, then. Go release your hounds…” Ajanthis muttered and swung around to tell his aide to pass the message along to the trainers. Later, no doubt, he would have to go down to the kennel and strike them. He was not accustomed to such embarassment in front of his friend. Perhaps, he might even take one of the trainers to the stables and force him to take his cock. That would be fit punishment for this failure. Not to mention a definite release. Despite Narcissus’ stinging words, Ajanthis could still feel his cock twitch and harden at the sound of his deep baritone voice. It always struck Ajanthis how masculine Narcissus’ voice was compared to the graceful, lithe, and sleek muscular of his toned body; almost feminine in its beauty. He was a strikingly handsome youth, his hair alone rivaled the divine locks of Apollo and Dionysis and his skin so delicate, still, after so much time in the sun. There was no doubt for Ajanthis as to whether the rumor of his mother’s origin – a naiad – was true. Only an immortal could create such attractiveness within her womb. His cock swelled a bit more and he felt his balls tighten in need as these thoughts passed through his mind. Dropping his hand to subtly readjust himself beneath a tunic which barely hid a thing, Narcissus caught the movement and narrowed his eyes.
            “Lord, here are your hounds,” Narcissus’ own head trainer said as he stepped forward beside the young men. Narcissus looked down on his hounds. They were sleek, long-bodied and keen. It was pure luck he had chanced upon this pair. A passing peddler, one of the many new peddlers from the far south where the grass gave way to sand, had them, pups still, in a cage in the back of his cart. He wasn’t eager to sell them and it had taken quite a bit of bartering to get the man to see reason. Narcissus had almost wept at the time, fearing the loss of such extraordinary creatures. He had been raised alongside the hunting hounds of his mother’s sisters’ family since infancy. And, though those hounds had been coarser than his now, with hanging ears, lumbering paces, and a good nose, he knew good breeding when he saw it. In the end, he ended up giving the peddler more than most of the huntsman would have ever considered fair for just a dog, but he was pleased. He ran a hand alongside the tawny jaw of one, then across the slope of the other’s ebony forehead. Lightning and Coal, what a sight! They had grown into fine males, both. And, from them, Narcissus had received some fine pups. His first match had been between two of the best bitches from his uncle’s kennel. The combination of his smooth and fleet males and his uncle’s fearless and bristly females had given birth to a unique hound in this region. Though still untested, being trained by the best, the pups he had kept were already as fleet as their fathers, more courageous than their mothers, and with thicker hides yet smoother coats than Narcissus had expected. By next fall, he could hardly wait to put them up against the dangerous bears which lived on the hillsides around the village. It would indeed, cause quite a stir, if his hounds could best a bear. Narcissus again looked down to admire his dogs. A truly prized pair, well-suited as the studs of his flourishing kennel.
            “They are gorgeous, aren’t they?” The words were hardly more than whispered, a caress born of pure affection. Murmurs of agreement caused Narcissus to smile. Even Ajanthis nodded his approval, though no one noticed his gaze, alone, never took in the dogs. In fact, he never looked away from Narcissus.
            “Yes, gorgeous…” Ajanthis breathed to himself.
            The trainer stepped forward then and ran his hands down the length of leather to each dog’s collar. The dogs, themselves, seemed to understand the game, for as the trainer’s fingers inched closer, their taut muscles bunched and quivered. Their mouths opened, tongues lolled free, and spittle dripped to the mossy floor of the forest. Their ears perked and twitched, searching the woods for their prey. Narcissus beamed. He could feel all the attendants regard for him grow as it became apparent just how beautiful the pair of hounds were. Normally, Narcissus would not have brought them out on such a simple hunt, his uncle’s hounds were usually sufficient. But, since Ajanthis begged to allow his hounds the turn to run, Narcissus couldn’t bring himself to leave his dogs home. Between them, competition was always a part of the context. What a way to show up Ajanthis this time!
With a skilled and practiced gesture of his hand, the trainer released one hound, then the other. They wasted no effort, sprinting into the woodland. With a curse directed at his staff, the trainer issued a brief command and they all took off in pursuit of the  hounds. Narcissus watched in amusement. His heart swelled with the thought of his hounds in action. It never ceased to amaze him at their speed and zeal. He only wished he could run with them, see them in their element.
            “Ajanthis, you know, if you only asked, I would offer you my trainer for a cost. Perhaps he could teach your own how to handle such hounds.”
            Ajanthis’ snort was unattractive, to say the least, but still made Narcissus beam. “If I asked…”
            “Though your hounds may never be as fast as mine, they still could make quite a showing. My uncle’s hounds have done very well in the contests each season. I might even consider adding that one bitch of yours to my line. She has nice lines, good strong bone, boldness, and what an eye!”
            “Fleet, indeed, is a lovely bitch. I would be pleased to loan her to you.”
            “Train her and we’ll discuss it more,” Narcissus announced, the final word, his interest in the conversation already beginning to wane. He heard the brush to his left flutter and crunch. Something large was moving in the woods nearby. Turning his attention to a whistle off in the distance, Narcissus cast a glance at Ajanthis. He knew it! He heaved his bow and checked the strap on his sheath of arrows. Together the young friends hurried off to track the trainer’s whistle. The dogs had found a stag. Now, it was up to them to lay it low.

*   *   *

            Ajanthis returned home sweaty and tired, his hounds and their trainers sent ahead, to find them eating heartily after the day’s hunt. Dismissing his aide to prepare his own dinner and perhaps a warm bath, Ajanthis stalked into the kennel. He immediately recoiled at the smell. Dogs may be Narcissus’ thing, but they never really interested him in the same way. Visiting the kennel was not a regular occurrence. How Narcissus could stand the odor and noise, he would never understand. He only endulged in the hounds to get close to Narcissus. However, after today’s debacle, Ajanthis needed to find something to do with his anger and though he would never harm one of the dogs, the trainers were fair game.
            “Tomo, on your feet.”
            Tomo, the youngest of the trainers, stumbled to his feet, already stammering apologies. His bowl of slop, some unappealing mixture of meat and grain, fell to the floor in his haste. Another of the trainers moved to clean up the mess, but with a scowl from Ajanthis, stopped and drew back.
            “Don’t bother offering excuses. I was promised the hounds were ready for today’s hunt. Did I not make it clear to you, the dogs are supposed to hunt stag? Rabbits, they ran after the damned rabbits!”
            “Sir, we…” Tomo dropped his eyes. He knew it was useless. As youngest, he often received the brunt of Ajanthis’ accusations. Though, usually, one of the older trainers stepped in to save the youth. This time, there were no volunteers.
            “Follow me, Tomo.” Ajanthis turned on his heel and walked away toward the stables. He didn’t bother to make sure Tomo was behind him. If the slave was that stupid to disobey, he would just kill him out right. Entering the stable beside the kennel, thankfully more pleasing in smell, Ajanthis automatically reached for the whip which hung from the rack of the closet stall. The stall, itself, was empty. He heard Tomo’s scared breath and nearly silenced whimper when it became clear to him how angry Ajanthis was. Ajanthis kept his head up and marched into the stall, though, he couldn’t help but feel the rush of power and desire rip through him at the sound. Fear was a surprising aphrodisaic.
            Stopping in the middle of the straw-cushioned stall, then slowly pivoting to face Tomo, Ajanthis whispered, “Turn around and lift your tunic.”
            Tomo’s face flashed panic, then fear, before he complied.
            No doubting dreading the whip across his rod, Ajanthis snickered. Not tonight. “Kneel.” Tomo obeyed. “On your hands, Tomo. Spread your knees.”
            Tomo kept his head down the whole time, but Ajanthis could see his body tremble with hushed tears. The boy was scared. Good. He would take his revenge for today out on him willingly. Ajanthis’ hand fell to his cock and he fisted himself as he studied Tomo. The boy could not have been any older than him, probably even a few years younger. His body was toned, rough, and dark even though he hailed originally from far north. The hard labor of servitude suited him well. Gripping tightly, he began to tug his swollen and throbbing flesh. His eyes closed and he imagined Narcissus now, not Tomo, in front of him, spread open, red-rimmed, puckered, and eager for his cock. Narcissus’ brow would be furrowed, as it usually was, when he caught a whiff of Ajanthis’ passion. His skin would be glowing, pale, yet sun-kissed on his shoulders and his arms. The complete antithesis to Tomo actually on his hands and knees before him. Ajanthis could visualize Narcissus’ hair, dropping low over his forehead and falling in caressing waves over his neck. Could almost feel the soft and springy texture beneath the tips of his fingers as he drove his hands into Narcissus’ tresses. Ajanthis’ fist pumped faster. His imagination caused his fingertips and palm to tickle. His other hand reached down and grabbed his own balls. He caressed them for only a moment, the sensation overwhelming. His thumb traced pre-cum as his fist slid up.
            “Open your cheeks.” A silent plea which Tomo wisely took as command.
            Ajanthis shifted forward as Tomo submitted. He fell to his own knees behind the slave. Still seeing Narcissus in his mind, he leaned over and used his tongue to lick around Tomo’s bud, bathing and preparing him. The taste wasn’t unpleasant, in fact, its salty and bitter flavor was too good. Ajanthis smiled against the bud. Tomo flinched, but smartly, said nothing. His tongue darted once inside, then Ajanthis pulled back.
            “Oh my gods,” he moaned, the words nearly ripped from his throat, as he pushed his cock slowly, inch by inch, into Tomo’s ass. So tight. So heavenly. Tomo, unable to control himself, groaned and panted in response. Whether from pain or esctasy, Ajanthis didn’t care in the slightest. Ajanthis slid deeper. His hand, the same which had been stroking his own cock, slipped under Tomo and grasped his cock. He was hard, slender, and surprisingly long. Just as Ajanthis had imagined Narcissus’ cock to feel like. A feminine cock, not thick and heavy like his own. Not brutish, but enchanting. A cock craving savoring. Dropping kisses along Tomo’s spine, shoving Tomo’s tunic higher as he went, Ajanthis’ hips forged forward, retreated, and thrust again. The cock in his hand spasmed and heated. Ajanthis teased it with feather-like strokes. He wished to lick it, to taste it, to suck it deep into the cavern of his mouth. His mouth watered with the suggestions. What would it feel like to take Narcissus between his lips, look up adoringly into his eyes, watch his friend’s pupils dilate with barely concealed lust? Would he come eagerly and let Ajanthis swallow or would he beg Ajanthis to release him and let him come all over his face? Ajanthis was lost in the thoughts.
            “Say my name.”
            “Ajanthis,” Tomo sighed. “Lord. Master.”   
            Urged on, his cock plunged deep and his balls constricted. His thighs tensed and his pace quickened. His breath caught in his throat and he felt his heart sieze. When he erupted, tears fell from his eyes unbidden. “Narcissus…” His head fell to Tomo’s back.
            Tomo’s knees, at last, gave out. He sprawled beneath Ajanthis.
            Ajanthis stirred, blinked his wet eyes and looked about him. He was shocked to find himself, still embedded in his slave, in a dirty stable. The last vestiges of a fictional moment, Narcissus coming under Ajanthis’ ministrations, both caressed in silk sheets, in his bed, in the light of single oil lamp, wrenched at his attention. He yanked free of Tomo, used the boy to push himself back up, and straightened his tunic. The discarded whip lay in the straw. Ajanthis lifted it.
            The strikes were muffled by the wooden walls of the stall, however, Tomo’s screams easily reached the other trainers’ ears. As did Ajanthis’ threat, spoken with the authority of a master, unsatisfied with his slave.
            “I expect a better performance. The first time.”
            Unsatisfied, true, but definitely not in the way anyone, least of all Ajanthis, completely understood.

Link to prologue.

Review for Hephaestus Lays Down the Law

Next up, Tilly Greene's Hephaestus Lays Down the Law from Amazon for $1.99.

So, I must be truthful. I actually purchased her other short story, Double Punch, and got this one instead. I'm not sure what to do about it, but I am disappointed, as I really wanted to read her take on Castor and Pollux. From what I read of this story, it promises to be good.

Onto this story about Hephaestus and Aphrodite. I am impressed. Ms. Greene seems to be well-read in the mythology of her characters. She fully grasped both deities extremely well, also Zeus and Hermes who had smaller parts. I enjoyed her sex scenes, finding them creative and hot. She definitely made the sex seem right and fitting to the characters' personalities.

It was a short story and I am pretty sure part of a series. Even with that said, I feel like Ms. Greene could have spent some more time on her character development. I would have enjoyed more of the conversation between Zeus and Hephaestus. I would have loved a preview of Aphrodite's sexual escapade with her boy-lover. I really wanted more about the Cyclops brothers and their maenead, Cyra. Also, I feel the conversation between Heph and Phria at the end could have been more in-depth, more conversational, and better written. She seemed to hurry through their "talk" to get to the sex quicker. It would have been divine to feel everything as they come to their separate realizations.

Finally, a note on Ms. Greene's style. There is an old adage about "painting the picture" versus "giving the facts." I feel this story could have been better had Ms. Greene taken the time to paint us the picture of her main characters, instead of just telling us what she wanted us to know. What a beautiful story it could have been!

Worth the price, though left wanting more.