Strapped, pt. 1

Into the inky blackness that surrounded her, she radiated heat.  Sweat had begun to form over every inch of her naked body, starting first as a fine mist, then beading here and there.  An occasional breeze was a welcome respite sending a delicious chill throughout, and though she couldn't remember where she was, she felt as if somehow she was floating.  Opening her eyes, the orc looked down and regarded her nakedness.  The wetness that covered her seemed to make her moss-green skin glow in the single spot of light that radiated from somewhere high above.  She watched as a bead of sweat formed on her chest and rolled languidly down between her fulsome breasts and embarked further across the undulations of her muscular stomach, finally disappearing in the soft valley between her legs.  She could only feel it now, but the sensation made her entire considerable frame shiver with excitement.

From the darkness, strong hands emerged and grasped at her: her waist, her shoulder, her hip, her thigh, her breast.  Every grasp overpowered her, but each was as tender as a familiar lover.  The rough, work-hardened hands of an orc were unmistakeable, and emotion overwhelmed her as she felt the touch of another of her kind for the first time in years, heat prickling her eyes.  Those hands rippled across her abdomen and delved further between her legs.  Spreading them apart, a thick finger laid along the length of her lips and pressed into her.  Her nipples hardened, her spine tingled and passion wetted her.  Turning her head, she searched for her lover, but could find nothing but a shimmer of light and a trick of the eyes, so instead she gave in to this spectre and rested her head back against it's shoulder as she was spread further by those ghostly fingers.

Finally, she was entered.  First by one finger, then by another.  A tear spilled from her eye and ran down an angular cheek, mingling with her sweat, as she felt herself being filled, at last, by an orc accepting of her.  Her arm looped around where she thought a neck should be as her lips found a cheek and she crushed them fervently against it.  Her nose was there now and she inhaled deeply.  As those powerful fingers worked inside her, she could smell the forge, the earth and blood; those things from her youth and adolescence, from the time before she left.

She did not want to tempt fate—to make demands and dispel the magic of this moment—but the fingers stirring her loins gave her new boldness.  Whispering into where an ear should be, she said,
   "Hurry and take me."
In an instant, she could no longer feel anything.  The fingers withdrew, the hand caressing her chest and stomach disappeared and the shoulder cushioning her head was no more.  For a moment she panicked, but then she was presented by her lover in the flesh.  He emerged from the darkness and stood between her legs, a perfect specimen of orcish manliness.  He was tall and muscular, marked by war and battle across his ochre flesh, and long dark matted hair fell across his shoulders.  In his hand he held his sizeable member as if it were a weapon: like a true orc, he was prepared to fight as well as to breed.

Without thinking, she spread her legs further.  He moved closer and traced the line of her slit with the spear in his hand.  She looked at him pleadingly and he smirked back playfully before positioning himself ready for a single, long thrust.  Their eyes met again and in one movement, he inserted ...

***

The cock crowed and jolted First Sergeant of the City Guard Ur-Zal Orthakh awake from another restless slumber.  Without even opening her eyes, she realised she'd been dreaming and her heart sank as she buried her face into her pillow.  She could feel the tell-tale coolness of moisture around her hips and let out a sullen sigh.  Finally, she rolled onto her back, opened her eyes and regarded the tent in the sheets that her substantial erection produced.  She whipped away the sheets, exposing her naked body to the cool morning air, and sighed again as a hand dropped as if by reflex to the nearly eleven inches protruding from her.

How long had it been since she'd visited the bordello, she wondered?  Given her state and her restless sleep, she would have guessed at a few months, but she knew it couldn't have been more than a few weeks.  Her appetite was growing.  This was a concern to her, not because of cost—others of her pay-grade were more than able to support a healthy patronage of the late-night and late-late-night venues all while supporting a growing family—but because discretion became harder and harder with each visit.  While androgynes were by no means unheard of in polite society, they were certainly rare, and even then the ones that were known of were generally beyond reproach as they would end up occupying some prestigious seat in politics or religion.  The elves, with their reputation for theocratic zealotry, were the prime example of this.  The other races were less embracing of such anomalies.  Unsurprisingly, orcs were brutishly single-minded on such matters, at least her former tribe were, and this often led to being shunned, exiled or worse.  Humans were, for the most part, dismissive and that tended to be the worst that could be expected in the cities, especially here in the Capital.  Intermittent contact with elves and elven culture had lead to a certain broadening of horizons, even if it was purely for the sake of appearing progressive.  The provinces were a different matter, simple folk prefer simple notions after all, and although things rarely turned violent, Ur-Zal had heard enough rumours to know that secrecy was best.  That applied to the cities, too.  Cautiously accepting as the humans might be of such a thing, as a public servant, Ur-Zal had a reputation to consider, and just being an orc could make public relations difficult enough, even if her decision to file down her exposed fangs was noted and appreciated by many.

Ur-Zal made a resolve.  She needed release, it was that simple.  She had been able to keep herself busy and distracted until now, but even the thought of being found out was not enough to tame the effect her libido had on the still rock-hard shaft in her hand.  She would visit the girls that night, but before she could begin her day's work, she would need to take more temporary relief.  Just the idea that she would be indulging her urges was enough to make Ur-Zal stiffen further and she allowed what had been idle brushes of her cock to progress to a fulsome and lengthy stroke.  She pulled from base to tip in one long motion, her full length adequately lubricated by her nocturnal emissions, and squeezed the head gently.  She returned downward and allowed her grip to loosen as she brushed the tightening knot of her balls.

Again and again she stroked like this as she allowed her other hand free reign of the rest of her body.  She brushed her powerful thighs, taught stomach, her large and generous chest and pinched and pulled on her nipples as the heat in her other hand built.  She licked and sucked her fingers and returned her roaming hand into her lap and spread wetness on her balls.  She caressed and squeezed, then reaching beyond found, very quickly, the soaking slit of her female organs.  Keeping to the surface, she teased herself while she continued to stroke every inch of her huge and still hardening cock.  When she could take it no longer, she eased two fingers inside of herself and let out a stifled moan of ecstasy as her spine arched sky-ward.  The hand on her cock moved faster and faster as the hand inside stirred her into a frenzy.

Before long, she found herself on the brink, and in a deft and elegant movement, she threw her hips toward the ceiling and her legs over her head slipping the head of her cock between her parted and ready lips, her shaft sliding between her breasts.  Both hands still on their task, she now pumped her hips gently and revelled in the sensation of her own lips wrapped around her own cock, and her own cock pushing against the back of her own throat.  She gasped and moaned and whimpered as she stroked and sucked and fingered until at last she contracted hard around her fingers and her balls released a stream of hot white fluid into her mouth and throat.  She swallowed hard several times, but as was typical, the volume she emitted was too much and her mouth brimmed with her lust.  She held her position for a moment or two longer as her organs twitched and spasmed their last, her cheeks puffed out foolishly.  At last she removed herself from her mouth and pussy, and lowered herself down, careful not to spill.  A momentary loss of control as she descended resulted in a minor leak, but as she took one last almighty gulp, she savoured the feeling as it trickled down her throat, both inside and out.  She made no attempt to wipe it up.  She breathed deeply, measuredly, and for a moment, she was satisfied.

***

Ur-Zal afforded herself a few moments to wallow in bliss before setting herself about the business of her day.  Her morning diversions, while necessary, had delayed her and she could already hear the rest of the garrison stirring around her.

The remnants of a jug of water and a cloth took care of any tell-tale signs of the morning’s activities before she began the onerous task of strapping herself into her home-made chastity device.  A soft piece of leather that spanned the length of her now flaccid member was wrapped around it, and a series of buckles arranged at regular intervals were fastened.  The one that encircled the base of her cock was fastened particularly tightly causing the smooth metal stud that protruded from it to dull some of the sensation to the area, while another identical strap did the same behind her balls.  The assembly was then pulled back underneath her, so that it appeared to be cradling her balls, and the two remaining straps near the exposed head were tied in a bow knot above the base of her cock.  Inspecting the tidy package, she remembered some of her previous methods involving strapping herself to her thigh or tucking her full length inside of herself, but she found that both these methods, if anything, had the opposite effect and resulted in a number of close-calls, which she was barely able to get away with.

Pushing the fond memory of literally fucking herself out of her mind, she dressed and regarded herself in the mirror.  Almost everything Ur-Zal wore had been intended for a large man, and even then had to be altered in some way to accommodate her size and stature.  The leather-and-steel cuirass had to be formed of two other pieces: one of which was narrower in the waist and neck in order to sit properly, and one that was wider closer to the middle to accommodate her large chest and shoulders.  This was then combined with steel pauldrons affixed to the cuirass by a steel upper breastplate, the contrasting sizes of which again had required specialist attention.  The mail skirt had to be simultaneously taken in and lengthened to the thigh, and even her royal blue tunic, emblazoned in gold at the hem with the kings coat of arms, was without sleeves, simply because her superiors deemed it too troublesome to arrange for wider ones to be tailored on.  At the very least, Ur-Zal’s own domestic skill meant that her boots, bracers and pantaloons, as well as any undergarments, all fit comfortably.  This patchwork of a uniform, while technically up to standard, was certainly possessed of a distinctly ‘orcish’ look, as if the woman wearing it weren’t indication enough.

Ur-Zal shifted and adjusted and said a silent prayer of thanks to whomever had the idea that the guards’ uniform should be so layered from the waist down, thus further assisting in her own concealment.  Finally, she strapped on her belt and weapons, tidied her braided hair, took a deep breath and stepped out into the comparatively small annex of the city garrison intended for women.  She nodded curtly to a few female guards who were returning from a night shift as she made for the main garrison and the rest of her day.

***

   “Running late, this morning, first sergeant?” inquired Captain Dirginal Vilstedt, as Ur-Zal bustled into his office.
   “Yes, sir.  Apologies.  I was—”
   “No need to explain, Orthakh, women’s issues are none of my concern.”
Ur-Zal chose to bite her tongue rather than to correct the man.  He meant well and was always decent to her and the other female guards, but he was clearly still of the generation that couldn’t quite fathom the ‘mysteries of a woman’s mind’.  In any case, she couldn’t think of a decent excuse.
   “Here’s your inspection list for today,” he continued, holding a sheet of paper aloft and already busying himself with some other task.  “I’m glad you’ve dressed light: you’ll be running back and forth across the city today, but that’s just how it’s worked out, I’m afraid.”
   “Not a problem, sir.”
   “Just what I like to hear!”
Ur-Zal turned to leave.
   “One other thing, first sergeant.”  He passed a hand over his balding head as if forming his thoughts.  “Perhaps I shouldn’t say so, but your hard work since your promotion has not gone unnoticed, and I’ve been informed that certain high-positioned people have taken a keen interest in you.  So keep up the good work, won’t you?”
Ur-Zal beamed,
   “Yes, sir!  I shall, sir!”
   “There’s a good girl.  Off you pop.”

Ur-Zal stepped into the bright late-spring sunlight, and spurred on by the compliment, she delved amongst the city's peoples and began her inspections of the other guards' patrols.  Her good mood did not last, however.  Before long, she found herself distracted by many of the citizens she passed.  When it came to the men, she could only dream of a specimen that could possibly compare to the beast that visited her last night, but when it came to the women, she was spoilt for choice.  She disrobed them in her mind, peeling away skirt, bodice and petticoat until they presented themselves lewdly and brazenly to her.  The more elaborately-dressed and high-class they were, the better, as far as Ur-Zal was concerned.  Her mind wandered to thoughts of putting those she considered stuck-up or snooty in their place and crashing into them until they lost their composure entirely, and their perfectly made-up visages melted into vulgar expressions of lust.  Then again, it would not do to overlook those women of more modest means.  It could be argued, and Ur-Zal certainly did, that their humble backgrounds might actually make them quite grateful to be taken, and make for a much more proactive and enthusiastic lover.  Sometimes she wondered if there were a woman like her in the crowd: burdened with a secret that swung freely between her legs, concealed among the many layers of her skirt.  Big or small, it wouldn't matter to Ur-Zal, so long as she got to watch as it swayed in time with the rhythm of their bodies.  Ur-Zal found herself staring a little too long at times and chastised herself for the potential scare she might have given the people of each quarter as she moved from patrol to patrol.

Unsurprisingly, it was those that sold their flesh that roused her the most.  Whether it was the whore in rags, who traded in the alleys of the Pleasure Quarter and stroked herself idly as the drunks or guards passed; or the concubines who were almost indistinct from the well-to-do women with whom they shared their quarter, but for their lack of escort; all it took was a meaningful look and a little more exposed flesh than was generally considered decent before Ur-Zal found the leather straps keeping her in check straining against her urges.  At one point, in the late afternoon, when she was passing Madame Taurey's, the bordello in the Market Quarter that Ur-Zal frequented, she lingered a little longer than she would have liked and only realised after the fact that she had almost opened the door and walked in.  The rest of the day dragged like this, but even after her shift ended in the evening, Ur-Zal was still faced with a long wait before she could steal out in the middle of the night.

***

Ur-Zal filled her time as best she could.  Sadly, having dinner, taking a trip to the baths and picking out something to wear only takes so long.  She was happy to find some colleagues at a nearby tavern and hoped to keep herself distracted, but was soon reminded of what alcohol can do to humans when members of the opposite sex are present.  Guards of both sexes seemed to become distracted from the conversation as eyes darted about the room looking for the next natural progression to the evening, and when a target was acquired and the hunt was on, the smell of rutting human became pungent to the orc.  It was becoming too much for her, and when one of the female guards licked some foam from her lip, Ur-Zal’s head began to fill with thoughts of what else that tongue or those lips could do; how they might look wrapped around her thick cock, or plying themselves to her steaming cunt.  There was a trembling in her lap and Ur-Zal almost pounced.  She too needed to hunt—to bury something into the flesh of another.

Ur-Zal stood up abruptly, said her goodbyes and took her leave.  She walked briskly and aimlessly through the city seeking only to kill time until the streets were less busy and she could slip by undetected.  She was on edge, sensitive to the slightest stimuli and starting at the smallest provocation.  She felt like one of the many junkies that would no doubt be pulling in by the night shift this evening.  She had lived among non-orcs for years and, as with the more civilised of her kind, did a good job of controlling her more orcish tendencies.  However, unlike her own kind, she had precious little means of outlet and now that she seemed to have reached her limit, she was having trouble controlling those tendencies.  What was more, these episodes seemed to be worsening and becoming more frequent with age.  She couldn't be sure why, but she knew that right now every instinct in her being was telling her to fuck something, or fight something and then fuck it.

Some ambient noise swelled as a nearby tavern door swung open and several men and women spilled out into the warm evening.  A woman fell to the floor.  Not caring how she got there, Ur-Zal, the orc in heat, decided she was going to mount her.  As she walked closer, a man kicked the woman in the stomach and cursed at her.
   "You stupid fucking bitch!  You whore!  I hope that bastard dies in your womb and you die with it!"
Ur-Zal snapped out of her trance and fixed the man with a paralysing glare.  She kept moving, but this time it was toward the man.
   "What the fuck do you want, orc-bitch?  This is between me and my whore wife!  Keep your filthy orc nose out of it!"
It would have been foolish to fuck something now, but she was certainly going to fight something else.  Still, even in her current state she knew that she had to be reasonable: she couldn't visit violence upon anyone unless— The man drew knife from his belt and made for Ur-Zal.  Very well, maybe just a little violence.

***

It took every ounce of restraint in her to not crush the man's head against the cobblestones.  She knelt on his chest, her other foot on his knife-hand and the top half of his skull snugly in her palm.  She waited like this until the on-duty guards were brought back, the victim was seen to, and the perpetrator hauled away.  A few words of thanks or admiration from the guards and witnesses were lost to the wind as Ur-Zal slipped off once again.

Silently, she thanked the heavens that she'd arrived when she did, not only for the well-being of the woman, but also her own.  Her blood pounded in her ears, but she knew that the run-in had helped to stay her urges for a little longer.  She made it back to the garrison a little after midnight and made preparations for a further evening excursion.

She partially undressed and released her cock from its cage, sighing as it hung freely for a moment, and pulled her custom-made pantaloons up once again, lacing them firmly.  Removing her blouse, she took a broad length of leather and wrapped it across her chest, fastening it down tightly, donned a dark linen shirt and a leather jerkin, and tightened every buckle and strap she could.  Taking a look at herself in the mirror, she checked to see that there were no obvious bumps or swells, and ran her hands across her chest.  Cruelly strapped down as far as she could be, she was now by no means flat, but had done a decent job of reducing her silhouette and hoped that any wandering hands might simply mistake them for a well-muscled chest.  Acknowledging that she appeared suitably bizarre, she finally took a small satchel from a cupboard and made for Madame Taurey's in earnest, making sure to pass through at least one quiet alleyway where she added the contents of her satchel to her outfit: a long dark cloak, a thin scarf she pulled across her nose and mouth and a pair of gloves.  Making sure she'd not been seen, she hurried the rest of the journey pausing, doubling back, or adding a loop to her journey every now and then to make sure she was not being followed.

At last she made it to the bordello and she entered with an air of confidence that belied how anxious she really was.
   "Ah, Mr. Mystery!  Wonderful to have you back so soon!"
There was a chime of agreement and a few waves from some of the girls around the room as the conspicuous new guest glided across the room to the speaker, Madame Taurey herself, who was standing at the bar.  The madame was a short woman past middle age, with reddish hair, darkened since her youth, that was pulled into a tight bun.  Her face was lined by no small amount of hardship along with the happiness that a successful business brings.  The latter had also made her plumper than she had ever been.  She watched with some amusement as so-called Mr. Mystery weaved easily among the tables and chairs standing between the bar and the door.  On previous occasions, he had paused to let a waitress pass, or stepped deftly aside as another patron suddenly pushed out his chair to stand.  It was such a gift, in her eyes, to be so heavily disguised and still be able to see, that there was a time when she speculated that this person was already blind, or some kind of sorcerer, but a blind man would not be picking out her most beautiful girls and would be much easier to take advantage of, and a sorcerer, one assumes, would not need to pay for the services of her establishment.  Mystery indeed.

Madame Taurey beamed up at the dark shape where a face should be.
   "Same requirements as always, I assume?" her voice seemed to sing.
The hood nodded.
   "Is there anyone that has caught your eye?"
The hood turned from side to side.
   "Perhaps I can bring you some recommendations?"
The hood nodded and produced a bag of coins, which it placed into Madame Taurey's little hands.
   "That's very generous of you, sir, as always.  Please take a seat and I'll bring some of my loveliest girls out."
Ur-Zal turned slowly and moved deliberately toward an upholstered bench off to the side.  No sooner had she gotten comfortable, than did Madam Taurey reappear with half a dozen beautiful young women each primmed and perfumed in their own individual way.
   "My recommendations, sir."
One-by-one, Madame Taurey walked down the line and listed off each girl's vital statistics, talents and taboos as if she were selling off a horse.  Ur-Zal would have felt some moral objection to this were it not for the fact that the madame managed to make the process seem somehow wholesome and sincere, and the fact that some of the girls seemed genuinely excited to go to bed with the hooded guest.

Finally at the end of the line, Ur-Zal made her choice.  Raising a hand, she pointed to one girl, Lilia, that she recognised, but had never taken to bed.  She was an athletic-looking girl with gentle curves and long blonde hair that fell in ringlets around her face.  She wore a cream-coloured balcony-fronted dress detailed in blue, which was hemmed high at the front suggestively displaying the folds of her petticoat.  Her long slender legs were clad in sheer translucent stockings decorated with flowers at the hem and suspended by garters that disappeared tantalizingly into her dress.  Upon being picked, she giggled as the others around her, particularly the ones that Ur-Zal had slept with before, congratulated her and wished her luck.  She smiled broadly at the hooded figure and proffered her hand to lead it to the room.

As they walked through the bustle in the room and up the stairs, Ur-Zal began admiring the little creature before her.  The dress was backless, so while it's volume concealed the girl's bottom, Ur-Zal had a fine view of the girl's back.  She was not bulky, but the muscles in her back were well-defined and they flexed gently as her hips swayed beneath it.  The girl knew where her assets lay and could obviously feel the mystery client watching her, and so pulled her hair over her shoulder to give her admirer a better view.  Ur-Zal imagined what it would be like to watch those ripples shift and break with pleasure, how satisfying it would be to see that back curl into itself one inch for every inch that Ur-Zal buried into her, how delicious it would be to watch as her creamy seed ran down this girl's back, breaking into little rivulets as it followed those delectable contours.  She was ready to pounce at a moments notice, but knew she couldn't forget herself and lose control, for the sake of her disguise and for the wellbeing of the poor girl on the receiving end.

***

   "The other girls have told me lots about you—apparently, you're quite the package,” said the blonde as the door closed behind them.  “I must admit, I'm very excited!"
Underneath her mask, Ur-Zal smiled.  This wasn't the first time she'd been assured of her reputation.
   "Now, remind me again what these special requirements of yours are."
Ur-Zal produced a length of material from beneath her cloak and held it aloft.
   "Ah, the blindfold.  Of course."
Lilia turned and held up her hair.
   "Give a girl a hand?"
Ur-Zal obliged and expertly took away her sight before leading her to sit on the bed.  Finally, she could be a little more herself and removed her scarf, cloak and gloves.  Everything else she would keep on in the event a quick exit was required.  Keeping her belt on, she unlaced her pantaloons, which by her own design, started so far back that, when fully undone, she could hang freely and comfortably.  Naturally, Ur-Zal had modified her clothes to accommodate these night-time excursions, but she also found they seemed much more practical in day-to-day life, especially considering her size.  Everything in place, she could finally begin.  

Lilia felt a huge hand take hold of her by one of her narrow wrists and place her hand on the shaft of a growing erection.  The girl gasped,
   "Oh, my ... The girls said you were big, but this really is sizeable ..."  The girl paused, as if intimidated, then smiled sweetly and said, "Let's see what we can do with this."
Getting down on her knees, she took Ur-Zal's half-hard cock in both hands.  She started at the head and licked all the way up to the base of the thick member before her, pausing to bury her nose in it's owner's tight, muscular abdomen.  She breathed deeply as she took in the heady scent.  The odour prickled gently at her nostrils and filled her lungs, then seemed to permeate throughout her.  As the wave dispersed, Lilia felt a sudden rush of blood between her legs and to her breasts as a hardness of her own formed at her nipples and clitoris.  She exhaled raggedly, and Ur-Zal felt the girl's breath playing gently against her groin and thighs.  The anticipation was building and accelerated her excitement.  Hefting her lover's shaft above her now, Lilia ran her tongue from base to tip along the underside leaving a long, thick trail of saliva behind.  She did not take it into her mouth.  Not yet.  She returned to the root and released her grip before taking in both hands the heavy sacks suspended there.  She wrapped her wet tongue around each of them as best she could, considering their size, and drenched her partner's balls, all the while making sure to push the rest of her face into the still-growing main event.  She sucked gently here and there, never letting Ur-Zal's cock lose contact with the soft skin of her cheek or forehead, before attempting to take one fully into her mouth.  She felt its owner tense and gasp gently in a mixture of pleasure and pain.  She withdrew before smiling innocently at where she thought a face should be before doing the same with the other side.

Lilia knelt up quickly, determined to take as much of the growing beast in her mouth as she could.  She flicked her tongue around the head a little and brought both her hands up and down the shaft eking out the first few drops of clear liquid, which she lapped up gladly.  Pressing her lips against it, she let go with her hands and held her lover by the hips, pulling them into her.  Her lips parted and soon her mouth was opened wide.  Barely a few inches down and she felt it hit the back of her throat, still with the thickest part to go.  If it was possible, her nipples and clitoris hardened further and she was suddenly aware of how cool the night air had become against her naked sex.  Raising and lowering her head a few more times, and drawing her tongue in circles around the feat in front of her, she at last withdrew completely.
   "This won't do at all,” she said with mock frustration.  “I have a better idea."
Finding the bed behind her, the girl hopped up and lay on her back, her head dangling off the edge facing the orc.
   "Much better, don't you think?  Now, come and slide it in!"
Lilia opened wide and stuck her tongue out.  She began to laugh mischievously, but soon she felt the familiar object in her mouth.  Guiding it in, she lapped wildly and brazenly at the thing entering her, lubricating it as it came.  She felt it approach the back of her throat and her eyes prickled as moisture formed beneath the blindfold.  She willed every muscle in her throat to relax before reaching out to find her lover's hips again and draw her nearer still.

Ur-Zal, concerned for the girl's safety, took her lead nevertheless.  Though every fibre of her being wished to be consumed by this girl's mouth, she knew that it could be dangerous or even fatal, and so she inched closer by increments, each fraction of an inch more pleasurable than the last.  About half way down, the girl stopped her, but held her in place by gripping her tightly by the base of the shaft.  Gently, she pumped in and out taking Ur-Zal along for the ride.  They moved so slightly it was imperceptible, and again and again they gently nudged at this perilous boundary, moving barely at all, the heat between them building further still.  Suddenly, Lilia paused, summed up all her courage and swallowed hard.  Her throat tightened around the head of Ur-Zal's cock and the orc’s breath trembled as she mustered every ounce of self-control.  She felt Lilia push against her and Ur-Zal reluctantly withdrew, keen as she was to stay in that warm, wet place indefinitely.

Lilia drew breath raggedly and laughed at her accomplishment; saliva, sweat, tears and pre-come beginning to spread across her delicate features.
   "There's not many that I can't take, sir.  You really are everything the girls say!"
Ur-Zal, now on her knees, caressed the golden head in front of her.  She wanted to kiss those lips, to explore that pretty little mouth with her tongue and be penetrated alike in kind, but knew that what remained of her fangs could still give her away.  She settled instead for touching her forehead to hers.  The girl giggled, rolled onto her front and propped her head up onto her elbows,
   "You are a sweet one."  She knelt up on the bed.  "But don't stop, now: I'm sure that's not the hole you paid for."
She raised the hem of her dress and petticoat and exposed herself to her customer.  She ran a finger along her dripping wet slit and pressed it to her lips, adding to the sordid blend of fluids building on her face, then sucked her finger clean.
   "I don't care what it is, but come and put something in me quick!"
Ur-Zal didn't need to be told twice, but she did need deal with all that troublesome clothing in the way.

In the darkness, Lilia could hear movement.  The bed shifted and she felt those huge hands at her back.  They brushed her shoulders and neck and she took the hint once again and brushed her hair to one side.  She could feel the heat of breath; soft, wet lips; and a hot, greedy tongue.  The hands hoisted her up to her feet in one quick motion and her dress was unfastened and fell to the bed.  Stepping out of it obligingly, she could feel those lips again planting kisses upon her lower back, her buttocks and her legs, every now and then feeling something like a tooth or nail grazing up against her, sending shivers of excitement through her body.  A hand fell to her side and she gently stroked the head of her admirer, feeling the coarse braids against her delicate fingers.  She was brought back to her knees, but was stopped just short by something thick, hard and hot between her legs, blocking her path.  She moaned gently and felt herself moisten further.  The firm hands on her hips encouraged them to move back and forth and she found herself rubbing up and down the full length of the beast that she barely took half of earlier.  She didn't need much more encouragement, so leaning back into her patron and looping an arm around the neck that she found there, she began to grind herself eagerly against the girth she was presented with.  She turned her head and pressed her lips into whatever nook of flesh she could find as she soaked the entirety of that shaft with her secretions and took particular joy as the head flicked past her clitoris, sending pulses of sensation rolling through her.

Thus far, she had done well to remain so quiet, but now Ur-Zal began to breath deeply in her lover's ear as her desire began to outweigh her self-control.  Ur-Zal had learned from experience that the more her partner was able to accommodate her size, the greater her sexual fulfilment.  Most human women were incapable of taking her entirely, but the women of Madame Taurey's would be no slouch in that department.  Even so, they were only human and required 'warming up', so to speak.  The girl would have to be introduced to her girth gradually, the boundaries of her limit explored, before Ur-Zal could feel content that she could let loose even a little bit, and that she would be satisfied enough to not need another visit any time soon.

Kneeling down with her bottom on her heels, Ur-Zal pulled the girl’s hips toward her.  The head of her cock, now glistening and slick, touched the girl gently at the entrance to her smooth, wet opening.  Acting on her own, but encouraged by her lover's grip, Lilia lowered herself onto the orc, penetrating herself painfully slowly.  She sighed with lewd satisfaction and for the first few inches, the challenge wasn't the length, but the girth, which widened her far quicker than she had expected.  For the next few inches, she was spread further still, far surpassing any lover previous.  She bobbed gently on these familiar six inches of cock, easing herself wider each time and daring to plunge deeper still onto the cruel invader, and stroking it with her pussy like it were her fist.  Her face, unbeknownst to Ur-Zal, alternated between an expression of consternation when she encountered discomfort, and relaxed into one of unbridled joy as she found herself relaxing enough to accommodate the next section of the seemingly never-ending rod.  And though Ur-Zal could not see her lover's expression, she could certainly hear her and took great joy in the gasps and moans that dragged themselves from her throat.  Soon, the girl was beyond the widest point and what remained to be seen was how much of Ur-Zal’s length she could take.  Ur-Zal could feel some resistance, and growing concerned for her partner, placed her hands on the girls buttocks and made to push her away gently, indicating that she should not force herself.  The girl took the orc's hands in her own, and replaced them on her hips.
   "No ..." she rasped.  "Don't stop me.  I want it."
Spurred on by this brazen demand, Ur-Zal's fingers tightened on the girl and eased her closer.
   "Ah!  Yes!" was the pronouncement ripped from the girl's throat, and it was all the confirmation the orc needed to probe further as the resistance she felt began to give way and she pushed deeper.  The girl's bottom was tantalizingly close now.  Another few inches and she would be entirely engulfed by her, but this would be far too much to ask of anyone.  Soon, once the depth had been set, Ur-Zal would begin moving and she could not be sure that her passion would not overtake her.  The girl seemed diligent and keen to go deeper, but she couldn’t be prepared for what would come next.

Ignoring Lilia’s protests, her lover began pushing her away, and strength that was quite normal for a rutting orc took the human by surprise however, and for a brief moment Lilia forgot that she was experiencing one of the most intense pleasures of her life as she was slid effortlessly some eight inches into the air.  They never lost connection, though; she was never pulled clear.  And just as she felt the head of her lover’s member near the opening of her drooling cunt, she was pulled back down just as quickly.  The sensation was so intense, it almost knocked the air out of her, and she let out a cry of pleasure so loud that it drowned out her lover’s satisfied grunts.  Again she was pulled off and returned, pumped back and forth repeatedly and rhythmically.  She reached out for something to hold on to, but found only the muscular arms controlling her.  She attempted to coo and moan encouragingly, but found that the intensity of what she was feeling was so strong that all she could do was let the air in her lungs be pounded out of her.  Her earlier confidence stripped away, she knew knew exactly what she was, now.  She wasn’t a seductress, or a siren.  She was a sheath to her lover’s sword, a sleeve to this magnificent cock.  This was barely sex—this person was just masturbating with her body.  And how lucky she was to be chosen.

Allowing passion to creep in, Ur-Zal still knew where the limits were.  Though she pulled the girl into her and flexed her hips with each stroke, she withdrew at the slightest resistance.  And though she longed to be taken whole, she had to admit that two-thirds wasn’t bad at all, and each stroke of this human sex toy that gripped and tightened around her so deliciously caused a wave after wave of sensation to roll through her body and dissipate wildly in her head.  It was all she could do to keep her eyes open—after all, it would be a shame to waste this view.  She marvelled at that magnificent back, glistening with sweat in the lamplight.  She watched in awe as its muscles tightened and softened in time with each thrust, forming into gentle ridges here and there then settling back into a long sensual curve, shifting like sand dunes and causing her pert little rear to bounce and sway.

Lilia felt herself being pulled back toward the bed and found her naked back resting on the leather that clothed the broad chest of her partner.  She was held tightly as those rough, strong hands soothed and massaged her body from her thighs to her neck.  She felt them encircle each of her breasts gently, and although she was not as well-endowed as some of her colleagues, she was still amazed at how much of her they seemed to cover.  She felt the weight of her breasts shifting gently in time with the pair’s movement under the soft caress of those coarse, work-hardened hands, her stiffened nipples brushing slightly against them.  All the while, those hips underneath her never stopped thrusting, driving the pair through wave after wave of sensual pleasure.  Her throat, tired and raw could only let out a pathetic whimper now, as each thrust added to the ever increasing pressure inside her.  It suddenly struck her that she had never needed to climax more than she did in this moment and for the first time in her career let a hand drift between her legs.  Just as she was about to make contact, she was seized by the wrist, then the other, and forbidden the right to pleasure herself.  She let out a pleading moan,
“Please, sir.  Let me!  I need to come!”
If it were possible, she felt the shaft inside her thicken.  Her arms were pulled to her side and she felt an arm slide under her back, causing it to arch slightly, and she was pinned in place.
“How can you be so cruel?!” she whimpered again, somewhat for effect, but also as a genuine plea.  Overcome with emotion, she began to turn her face towards her tormentor and tilting her chin up, her lips slightly parted, she searched for purchase against something in kind.  Instead, her throat was encircled in flesh by a hand that she, by now, was confident had the power to crush her windpipe.  She both loved and feared those hands.  Never had she ever felt so vulnerable, so frightened and yet so protected.  Over the rhythmic pounding, she felt her extremities tingle at the thought.  Allowed only just enough air to breathe, her already muted whimpers now became hoarse and rasping, and restrained as she was, she could barely move.  Instead she could only feel the cock pressing into her again and again, probing deeper than anyone ever could.  Behind the blindfold, she could feel her eyes roll back in her head as the intensity of the anticipation mounted beyond anything that she could possibly withstand and all thoughts were excluded from her mind save for her need to come.

Ur-Zal took a certain amount of pleasure as she watched Lilia’s golden head come to rest on her shoulder.  Her mouth slightly agape, she could see that her tongue lolled gently to one side of her mouth, and although she was quite confident that the girl was conscious, she had gone eerily quiet.  Releasing her neck had little effect, but as her hips began to slow, she received confirmation that all was well.  The girls head turned towards her and made clear her demands:
   “Don’t fucking stop!” she hissed.  “Please don’t stop!”
Barely was the first word out of her mouth before Ur-Zal renewed her resolve and she spurred them both on to completion.  She released the girl’s arms from behind her and encircled her in her embrace, the girl responding in kind.  Her other hand dropped between the girl’s legs and pressed against the wettest, hardest point she could find.  The girl squeezed her cock tightly and she emitted a guttural moan.  Circling it gently and increasing the pressure gradually, still driving into her from behind, she welcomed the building, wailing whimper next to her ear, punctuated by her wholly unaltruistic encouragement:
   “Don’t stop!  Don’t stop!  Harder, damnit!”
Not one to disappoint, Ur-Zal complied gladly.  Withdrawing as much of herself as she could, she plunged quickly and deeply as she allowed herself, her hands rubbing mercilessly all the time, the girl shrieking loudly with each stroke.  It wasn’t long before the girl’s legs began to twitch, her pussy began to spasm and her arms began to flail wildly, almost comically.  Ur-Zal could hear no more words, just the engulfing sound of a woman utterly possessed by the pleasure she gave her.  Even as the cacophony subsided, every subsequent stroke of her cock made the girl tighten around her, a piteous moan emitting each time.

Ensuring they remained connected, Ur-Zal rolled the both of them over and straddled the girl from behind.  Pushing her flat to the bed, she continued massaging the girl’s insides in long, laboured stokes, relishing the sensation of being gripped tightly each time.  She picked up her speed once more, her captive still twitching and spasming beneath her.  The mixture of sensations was intoxicating and the familiar view of the girl’s finely muscled back was all it took before Ur-Zal was sent over the edge.  She pulled out quickly just as her pelvic floor tightened and a thick white stream of come emanated from her throbbing cock, lashing across her lovers buttocks and back.  Again and again, she spasmed as she came in thick ropes, dousing the barely moving girl beneath her.  She put a finger in her mouth and bit down hard, fighting every impulse to make a sound until she was done.  She breathed deeply and rocked back onto her heels, pearlescent liquid dribbling down her twitching shaft.

She wouldn't normally have said it, but there was something euphoric to being literally covered in this person’s come, feeling it run down her spine and tracing shapes across her back, waist and hips.  For that reason alone she was reluctant to move, never mind the cost of cleaning the sheets being docked from her pay, but she was surprised to feel a tongue applying itself to her body and lapping up each drop, leaving behind only tell-tale traces in its wake.  She smiled into the pillow, not wishing to give herself away, but the other girls were right: if this client were any more diligent, she’d have a serious candidate for marriage!  Her tongue-bath concluded, she rolled onto her back just as those hands, those wonderful hands, grabbed her by the hair and the jaw and opened her mouth.  Hot creamy fluid filled her mouth and she swallowed it up greedily.  She reached out for her lover and found the source of her infatuation, still hard and sensitive, slick and dripping with every combination of fluid she could conceive of.  She sat up, licking and sucking at it gently.  Looking up and hoping that this wonderful creature were looking back at her she said,
   “You’d not be getting your money’s worth if I didn’t clean you up a bit, too.”
A hand stroked her head delicately and she turned her face into it, taking it by the wrist, and bit playfully at the thumb.  It’s owner took the bait and the thumb found its way into her mouth as she continued to nibble, lick and suck.
   “You know,” she said between nibbles and swirls of her tongue.  “If I hadn’t just taken the biggest cock of my life, I might be fantasising about what this thumb could do right now.”  She gave Ur-Zal’s shaft a playful squeeze.  “But this fella doesn’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon, so I suppose I should do something about that first.”
The words were barely out of her mouth before she found herself being fed cock once again.  The girls had warned her that this customer had a fast turnaround, but nothing could have prepared her for this.  Then again, she certainly wasn’t complaining.

***

It was some time before Ur-Zal emerged from the room, Lilia’s cries of pleasure and her request to ask after her again still ringing in her ears.  Closing the door behind her, she made one final check that everything was in its place before she embarked on her journey home and walked down the hallway toward the stairs to the bar and the cool air of the early hours.

As she reached the bottom of the stairs, she heard raised voices, both male and female, and not of the sort to which Madame Taurey’s was accustomed.  These weren’t shrieks of joy or moans of pleasure, or even the festive cacophony of fully-clothed adults in high-spirits.  Instead, the voices she heard were full of consternation and anger.  Instinctively, the sergeant moved to ready her grip around her sword, but remembered that, being dressed as a civilian, she had come out unarmed.  Standing in the doorway to the bar, she surveyed the scene: a man in his thirties, clearly drunk, and unfamiliar to her, was involved in some kind of struggle with one of the girls.  It being quite late, the rest of the room was empty of patrons and most of the staff.  Some of the other girls were trying to separate them, as was Madam Taurey, who appeared to be the most active in attempting to mediate the situation.

She caught the dark stranger out of the corner of her eye and immediately rushed over.
   “Ah, Mr. Mystery, as you can see we’ve met a spot of bother,” she said as she pulled Ur-Zal toward the door.  “I’m sure we can get everything under control, but it’s probably best if you take your leave before the guards arrive.”
   “I’ll not be taken in by no bleeding guards!  You’re a thief!  The lot of you: thieves!  I gave you my money, now it’s time I take what I want!”
The situation was turning dire.  Madame Taurey regretted speaking quite so loudly, but she had no time for debate.  What was worse, one of her most lucrative customers might well get caught up in this scandal and have their anonymity compromised.

Ur-Zal, meanwhile, had her own conflict.  It would be much simpler to leave now, but this drunk was likely to turn violent at any moment and it would be the grossest negligence were she to abandon these people.  Now, just a few feet from the door, the decision was made for her as she heard a bottle smash on a table.  Turning, she could see the man now with his back to the wall, his woman of choice held tight against him and with shards of glass held to her slender neck.
   “Piss off, the lot of you!  I’m taking what I’m owed!”
   “You should go,” urged the madame.  “The guards will be here any moment.”
Ur-Zal took the woman by the shoulders and squeezed gently, pushing her to one side.  Walking slowly, she bore down on the assailant, straitening up as she approached.  The hunch she adopted to accommodate her cloak was intimidating enough, but now reared up to her full height, she was positively towering.  Were she armed and were there not a hostage in the way, she would be within optimal striking distance, but now that she was at a disadvantage, violence wouldn’t be an option and she would have to try a new approach: diplomacy, something that orcs are not generally famous for.

Ur-Zal slowly drew back her hood and removed her mask.  Still none the wiser for anything to say, she opened her mouth to speak anyway, but was cut short.
   “Orc-bitch!” spat the man, now holding the broken bottle out towards her.  “I should have known better than to come to the capital where scum and freaks like you are free to roam is if you belong here!”
Ur-Zal wore a pretty good poker-face, but hearing things like that never got any easier.  She clenched her fists and her jaw.
   “Nothing to say?  Too fucking thick?  Can you even understand me, you stupid, drooling freak?!”
Ur-Zal scrunched up her face, trying desperately not to let the slurs cloud her judgement.  Clearly, diplomacy was out of the window.  What she needed now was an opening.  A half-second window within which to act.  Without thinking, she took another step forward.
   “Fuck off, you stupid— Argh!”
And there it was.  The girl, finding her nerve now that there was no weapon to her throat, had bitten down on her assailants thumb, trod on his foot, and thrown her head back into his face in rapid succession and managed to wriggle free of his grasp.  The very next moment, Ur-Zal had him pinned against the wall by the neck and was squeezing down tightly on the hand wielding the broken bottle.  The glass squeaked and strained under the pressure, ready to pop into countless shards all destined for the man’s soft, fleshy palms.
   “I think that’ll do, first sergeant.”  Madame Taurey appeared by Ur-Zal’s side and eased the weapon from their combined grasp.  “Blood is such a pain to remove from the carpet.”

***

When the guards finally arrived with one of the girls, it was to quite an unexpected scene.  Instead of the tense stand-off they were lead to believe was happening, they found their sergeant calmly sipping from a tankard next to a roughed-up drunk who was bound at the wrists.  The pair were surrounded by a small number of the courtesans and the landlady all giggling like schoolchildren in a scene so bizarre, it was almost enough to distract from the sergeant’s unconventional mode of dress.
   “Uh … Everything in order there, sergeant?” said one of the guards, with a quizzical look on his face and doing his best not to look confused in front of all the pretty ladies.
“I should think so, Corporal Spade,” came the response.  Ur-Zal stood and dragged the offender by the arm toward the guards.  “This one needs a few nights in a cell, possibly more depending on what the magistrates say, and here’s my part of the paperwork.”
   “Great … Thanks, sergeant.  You … have a good night.”
   “And you.”
   “Ladies,” the younger of the two managed, tipping his helmet in their direction.
A sing-song chorus bid the two men, plus one, goodbye as the trio took their leave.
   “All right, ladies,” Madame Taurey ordered, in her most matronly tone.  “I think it’s time we call it a night.  Off to bed with you.”
The girls obeyed their madame, some coquettishly blowing kisses at Ur-Zal as she took up her cloak and satchel as if to leave.
   “First sergeant,” the older woman interjected.  “Do you think we could have a word before you disappear?”
Ur-Zal had been dreading this part.  She’d hoped against hope that the evening’s events would have been fraught with enough confusion that everyone would have forgotten that she’d arrived as a customer.
   “Yes, I suppose we should.”

The two retreated to a back room, which served as an office, and Madame Taurey poured them two glasses of port.  The two sat, and under the woman’s expectant gaze, despite her hulking size, Ur-Zal felt as though she were a child being admonished by her schoolmistress.
   “So, the secret’s out,” announced the madame, at last.
Staring into her glass, Ur-Zal could only nod, dumbly.  Her cover had been blown spectacularly and in front of some of the people whom she least wanted to know it.  Madame Taurey fixed her with a hard gaze in the silence.
   “Well, at least you can finally dispense with the silly disguise and the awful habit of fucking with your clothes on,” she said in a matter-of-fact tone.  “The girl’s like you too much to say it, but they begin to chafe awfully after round three, you know.”
   “You mean, you’ll not tell anyone?  You’ll keep my secret?  And the girls?”
   “As I say, the girls are far too fond of you to do anything to risk you not visiting us any more and I don’t think it would do to ‘out’ one of our more lucrative sources of income.  Of course, now that you’ll not be paying us not to ask questions, I can see we’d take a bit of a loss on your usual contribution.  Then again, given your reputation among the girls, one assumes we’ll see an increase in the frequency of your visits, so we’d recoup any losses that way.”
Ur-Zal smiled and took a sip of the fortified wine, breathing a sigh of relief as the cool liquid began to warm her.
   “Perhaps more to the point, of course,” continued Madame Taurey casually, “we’ve been keeping the business of who you are to ourselves for years.  I don’t see any reason to stop now!”
Ur-Zal almost choked on her wine.
   “You knew?”
   “Of course we bloody knew,” came the laughed response.  “Well, maybe the girls didn’t know right away, but you bed enough women and eventually they’ll start talking.  As for me … Well, nothing gets past me in my house, as you know.”
   “I had no idea …”
   “Then there was the fact that you turned up in town at the same time ‘Mr. Mystery’ started visiting us, and that not long after you received your promotion you managed to increase guard patrols in our end of town as well as that poor excuse for a Pleasure Quarter down the way.  Also you’re always stopping by to make sure the guards are doing their jobs and …”
   “Yes, all right.  I get it: I’m not as clever as I thought,” she retorted curtly.
   “Oh, I don’t know about that,” cooed the older woman maternally.  “We didn’t catch on right away.  And I just know that our other customers haven’t put the pieces together yet.  They’re too easily distracted by our attractions, as you can imagine.  And rightly so: if they ever did find out, the whole town would be uproar!”
Ur-Zal shuddered at the thought.
   “You don’t need to remind me.”
   “Right you are.  Well listen, love,” Madame Taurey drained the last of her port and got to her feet, heading for the door.  “You come and go as you like; no more sneaking around for you.  Your secret’s safe with us.  Anything else you need, you come let us know.  For a nominal fee, of course!”  This last point she punctuated with a comical wink and a nudge before she noticed that Ur-Zal hadn’t moved.
   “Why are you doing this?” implored the orc.  “And don’t say it’s because of the money.  I know what this place turns over with or without my help.”
Madame Taurey stood with hands on her hips, mock annoyance on her hardened features.
   “Well, if you must know,” she softened and let her hands drop to her sides.  “It’s because we like you, Uzzie.  Even the gentlest of gentlemen has a mean side, but you, with everything that you are and all that you’ve been through, I’m not sure you’ve an ounce of nasty in you.  Even if you do like it a bit rough!”  The woman cackled gleefully.  “But in all seriousness, you take care of our girls, both in their beds and in the streets: don’t think we’re not grateful for the extra guards in the evenings.  You’re a good egg, Ur-Zal Orthakh.  Your own lot might not have been able to see that, and maybe polite society around here’s not ready either, but we are.  And in our line of work, it’s just good sense to keep the good ones close by.”
   “Thank you,” was all the orc could manage as she felt her nose and eyes begin to prickle.
   “Oh, hush.  Off with you to bed.  It’s been a long evening for us all!”

Much as she loved being at Madame Taurey’s, the evening had been a tumultuous one, and although the outcome stood starkly in her favour, the cool night air felt cleansing as she stepped out into the night.  She breathed it in and savoured the moment.  Madame Taurey was right: the fact still remained that if she was ever discovered by the general populace, she could still run into significant problems, but for now all she could think about was the little piece of freedom she’d earned in so many years.  She floated home and slept more soundly than she had in a long time.

***

The next morning, Ur-Zal rose promptly, and despite having had only a few hours’ rest, she awoke feeling refreshed and alert.  The high she felt as she came home was still with her and she was determined to ride it for as long as it lasted.  Humming a merry tune to herself as she strapped herself in and dressed, she merrily bid her colleagues a good morning and talked easily with the guards about to go out on duty as they ate together.  As it turned out, her good mood would last only until she reported to the captain for her day’s orders.

   “Ah, First Sergeant Orthakh, just who I wanted to see,” announced the captain in his usual easy tone.
   “Captain,” she responded, by way of greeting.
   “Close the door, would you?  And do take a seat.  There was something I wanted to talk to you about.”
Suddenly, the smile Ur-Zal had been wearing felt forced as she began to dread walking the few feet to Captain Vilstedt’s desk.
   “Of course, sir.”
The pair sat quietly as the captain shuffled loose pages about on his desk.
   “Ah, here it is,” he said under his breath.  He scanned the page and his grey moustache twitched occasionally as he read.  At last he spoke,
   “So, it seems you’ve taken to prowling the city at night and coming to the aid of some of our more vulnerable, and I grant you more lovely, citizens.  A marital tiff in the streets and an incident at one of the brothels, and you happen to be first on the scene for both.  Would you care to elaborate?”
   “With respect, sir, I’m not sure what you’re asking.  All the relevant information is in the reports.”  Ur-Zal strained to maintain her composure.
   “And the reports are more than adequate: you’ll hear no complaints from me there.  What I’m concerned with is this new predilection for vigilantism the reports seem to convey.  Or is there something I’m missing?”  As the captain leant his chin on his fists, he fixed Ur-Zal with a look not unlike that which Madame Taurey had used the night before.  Under this paternal gaze, Ur-Zal felt as if she were squirming, even if he couldn’t see it, and she gripped the arms of the chair tightly.
   “To be honest, sir, I’ve been having trouble sleeping recently.  In the months since I’ve been promoted, I’ve felt that there’s been a lot of expectation on me, especially since you saw fit to promote me over the heads of some of my colleagues.  Going out at night, I find it relaxes me somewhat.  Sometimes, I can walk for hours and end up quite lost.”
   “So it was coincidence that you were there in time to stop both incidents before they escalated any further?” the captain wavered.
   “It was just poor fortune that I stumbled upon those incidents when I did.”  Ur-Zal couldn’t remember when she had last heard a finer sting of half-truths, and the fact that it was coming seemingly effortlessly from her own mouth was a thrill to her.  All the more so that she was half-lying to her superior officer, and one whom she respected deeply at that.
   “Well, I’m sure that the two women concerned consider it rather good fortune that you arrived when you did.  From what I hear, the pregnant woman’s child may yet live.”
Ur-Zal’s sense of satisfaction evaporated as she was rudely reminded of the circumstances of the first incident she encountered last night.
   “I’m glad,” was all she could manage.
Captain Vilstedt grunted in agreement and leaned back in his chair, his gaze wandering off to one side of the room.
   “To be quite frank, sergeant, I’m not sure I entirely believe your story.”  Ur-Zal held her breath.     “But I also don’t think you were up to anything you shouldn’t have been.  What you do on your own time is your business and none of mine.  Just make sure that it doesn’t effect your duties—you can hardly meet those ‘expectations’, as you put it, if you’re deprived of rest, can you?”
   “No, sir,” replied Ur-Zal, relieved.
   “And if this is about your little pet-project in the bordellos, then … well …”  The captain shifted uncomfortably and averted his gaze once again.  “I suppose that stands as a testament to your ethic,” he said with a wave of his hand.
   “Thank you,” Ur-Zal muttered, smiling privately.
The old man in him grunted once again.
   “Oh, speaking of which: the real reason I needed to speak to you,” he declared, perking up.  “The king has caught wind of your recent efforts to become crowned ‘patron saint of prostitutes’ and is suitably impressed by what you’ve accomplished.  I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that violent crime is down significantly in those areas and falling, and the girls— ah, women there have reportedly never felt safer.”
Ur-Zal stifled a laugh,
   “I’m glad the king approves, sir.”
   “Well, that’s not all,” the Captain continued, choosing to ignore the almost-outburst.  “He’s arranging a tour of the kingdom for his youngest—the girl, I forget her name—he wants her to take in the sights, sounds and smells of her father’s fine country.  Heaven only knows why, the brat has never seemed like the ruling type, but that aside, he has requested that you act as personal bodyguard on this little jaunt and lead a small protection detail for the rest of the caravan.”  The room seemed to fill with a stunned silence.  “I can assure you, dear girl, that this is quite the acclamation.”
   “Y-yes, of course.  Sorry, sir.  I’m just not quite sure what to say.”
   “Evidently.  In any case, it’s a simple enough posting, and one that I am sure will be well within your capacity: scare off a few bandits, make sure the stinking provincials don’t muss up the princess’ gown, that sort of thing.  And when you return, it will hold you in good standing with the king, which I don’t need to tell you is not something to be sniffed at.”
   “Certainly, not … No … Yes …” the orc mouthed absently.
The captain regarded the orc from beneath arched brows, and smiled,
   “Clearly, this all needs to settle in a bit, so that’ll be all for now.  Here’s your list for today.”
   “Yes, thank you, sir,” Ur-Zal said rising, the life beginning to return to her voice.
   “Not at all.”
She turned to leave and made it as far as the door before the captain spoke again.
   “Oh, and parade dress tomorrow, please,” he said, already seeing to his next order of business.     “We’ve an audience with the king, and I’m not sure he much cares for all the leather.”
And if orcs were capable of such sounds, Ur-Zal seemed to squeak:
   “Of course, sir.”

Finally on the other side of the door, Ur-Zal breathed deeply as she made for the exit and her duties.  Drifting through the sunlit morning, she felt the wind of change sweeping her up and carrying her forward.  It had been so many years since she had begun living and working among the humans and in the space of one day, so much had changed.  What remained to be seen however, was if this change was for the better and what else there was to come.

***

[Thanks for reading part one of ‘Strapped’!  The intention is to turn this into a short series, with updates as and when I have the time.  If you enjoyed this so far, want more and can spare a little cash, head over to my Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/imakesmut and throw a few pennies my way!  Thanks again and see you in the next instalment.]

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