Allura ran, using the river to lead her back to the castle. Not that she thought she’d make it back to the castle in time. She wouldn’t be able to scale the cliffs without any gear, and would have to make her way up through the forest instead. There was no chance of reaching home before the robeast…and even if she did, being inside her castle would not guarantee her safety. As long as the robeast continued to interfere with their equipment, they could not fly the lions, or use the turret lasers…
The only comfort the castle wall’s could offer her was the knowledge she wouldn’t have to deal with Lotor…not immediately anyway…For a while she could hide, deny the feelings he stirred up in her. She almost wish he’d drop the nice guy act, she was sure it was only a mask he wore to seduce her…better he revert to the grabby, sex obsessed facade. Be, and do what everyone always said he’d do if he ever caught her all alone. At least then she’d be able to hate him.
As she ran, Allura’s eyes darted about, scanning the area…for what…Lotor’s return? Or maybe Keiths…The Black Lion’s pilot’s appearance would be an immense relief to the confused princess. At least then she wouldn’t have to deal with a man on a sexual level. No, the good looking captain of the Voltron force, had never shown any interest in her…any interest in ANY woman. Instead, he preferred to focus on war strategies, and practice runs in his lion. She sometimes wondered if he was gay, or just really took his job too serious…He was definitely the type to be married to his work. It was because of these actions, and her doubts about him, that Allura had quickly dismissed Keith as a prospect for love. Not that he even noticed love, or it seemed, any other emotions. No, Keith was all too content in the over protective, big brother role he had adopted in his dealings with her. If he was here now, he’d leap to her defense, drag–take her away from Lotor. Maybe hold her hand in a purely platonic fashion, if he felt she was shaken over the encounter. He’d lead her back to the castle, where her daily routines waited for her, never changing, never allowing her a moment to herself to think outside the box. It might be boring and predictable but it sure spared her a lot of heart ache.
“Allura!” She sighed, not knowing if she should be angry at Lotor for following her, or relieved he still cared enough to make the attempt. “Lotor…” She turned, gun still in hand. “I thought I told you to–mph!” He was on her lightning fast, the gun knocked out her grip, landing somewhere, where, she did not know. She had become too distracted by him kissing her, grabbing at her, fondling her body. He definitely seemed intent on not wasting any more time, disregarding finesse for speed. She didn’t like it…didn’t like how he assumed she was just here for his pleasure. “STOP IT!!” Allura cried, trying to push him off of her.
“Allura…” He growled, ripping her shirt open.
She gasped, appalled. “What is wrong with you!” She pressed her hands against his chest, trying to move him away.
“I need you now…desperately…” He murmured, taking no notice of her distress. “I desire you like a man lost in the desert craves a drink of water…” He nipped her neck, breaking the skin as he gave her a love bite.
“Well, keep on thirsting…” She managed to wiggle partly away from him. “Cause the bar is closed.”
“There’s always time for last call!” He informed her, shifting his grip to her legs. He really did seem desperate to do this with her…what had changed…why had he abandoned his charade of seducing her into it…unless this wasn’t the Lotor she had just left in the cave…maybe it was the other Lotor…but then, hadn’t he too been attempting to put her in a favorable frame of mind…what had changed…unless…he knew the other Lotor was hot on his heels, and he was desperate to be with her, before they were interrupted. Well, this was one princess who wasn’t about to be man handled into something against her will! Perhaps knowing that the other Lotor would be along soon, made her braver, and she lashed out, slashing her fingernails across his face.
The Lotor grabbing at her, howled but it was not of pain, but of anger. He took one hand off of her, to finger at the three deep welts over his right cheek, that ended just beneath his eye. He looked at the blood on his fingers, then glared at her, unable to believe she had injured him. That she had dared to do him damage. The look he flashed her, chilled her to the bone, and she suddenly thought of what the outcome could be, if the other Lotor wasn’t running to her rescue…
“You will pay…” He hissed, bringing his hand around to slap her.
“Ah!” Allura twisted in his grip, and his leg struck out, sweeping the ground from her feet. She fell backwards, hitting the ground hard enough to knock the air out of her lungs. She blinked, stunned and seeing stars, conscious of rocks digging into her skin. Sneering at her, he plopped down, putting all his weight on her, as he straddled her small frame.
“And now…” He was leaning forward, a monstrous leer on his face, as his hands roughly explored her body.
“Get your hands off of her!!” Allura swooned, almost losing consciousness, so relieved HE had come after all.
“You again?!” hissed the scar faced Lotor. “I thought I told you not to interfere with me!”
“You should know by now, I don’t take orders very well.” retorted Lotor. “I give them!”
“Hmph.” The clone sat back on his heels, Allura forgotten for the moment. “Last time I let you live…”
“Oh, YOU let me?!” demanded Lotor, recalling with amusement how Allura had been the one to back off the clone. Out of the corner of his eye, he noted her, lying on the ground, breathing slowly, her face seeming incredibly pale, her eyes looking fear stricken. His fist clenched. His clone would PAY. For every cry he caused Allura to scream, every plea she had issued that he had ignored, any nightmares the clone may have caused her, Lotor would exact vengeance for each and every offense. For his beloved’s behalf, and for HIS.
“Last time, I left you alive…” repeated the clone. “Now, I shall rectify that mistake!” He stood up, flexing his hands.
“Funny, exactly what I was thinking!” hissed Lotor. “You should never have been created!”
“Hmph! And you…you should been destroyed the moment I stepped out of that tube!” The clone had moved away from Lotor, slowly stalking towards Lotor. “You’re obsolete! A wasted excuse of a life form! I am your better. I can, and I WILL accomplish everything you have failed!”
“I don’t see a lot of doing on your part.” Lotor too began circling the clone. “Just a lot of mindless chatter.” He mocked the clone, by play acting a yawn of boredom.
“Why you…” hissed the clone. Together they walked around the other, always facing each other, looking very much like a man posing in front of the mirror…except one’s face was perfect, the other scarred. They continued stalking each other, and Allura slowly sat up, crossing her arms over her chest, just watching as they occasionally broke through to a feint of attack. Neither went through with the move, instead just testing to see if the other had let down his guard, had any sign of a weakness.
They could have danced this deadly tango for hours, if not for the clone losing all form of patience. Being only a few days old, the clone was eager to get on with life, and experience all it had to offer. He felt he did not have time to waste fooling around with Lotor, not when he was confident in what the final outcome would be. It wasn’t enough to strike Lotor, he had to sound his victory with a cry. “The first to strike will always win the battle!”
“That’s what you think eh?” Lotor dodged his fist, feeling the rustle of a sleeve brush against his face. “Where exactly…” His hands came up, moving to deflect the clone’s punches. “Did you hear that?” He didn’t just block the punches, he threw out his own. “Certainly not from me.” The two Lotor’s hands were a flurry of super fast movements, Lotor’s right arm would come up, blocking the clone’s punch, then right back down as the left came up to attempt a blow of his own. It failed, the right one would be right there, trying to connect, even as it went down, the left arm was coming up to block a punch from the clone. The clone’s arm were doing similar movements, just the exact mirror opposite. Allura watched this, not being able to tell who if any was landing any hits, not knowing how much time had gone by, when suddenly Lotor’s hand got past the clone’s defense, connecting with his eye.
The clone hissed, backing away, and Lotor went to press the advantage…only to have the clone catch Lotor’s wrist in his hand. “Enough!” Lotor’s left hand was captured as well. The clone smirked, and was displeased to see Lotor also shared that expression with him. As for the prince, he could not help laughing out loud, at the clone’s obvious annoyance. “What do you find so funny?” demanded the clone.
“Oh…just this…” Lotor slammed his knee into the clone’s stomach. With a gasp, the clone hunched forward, though he did not let go of Lotor’s wrists. Lotor then performed a back flip, his legs going up into the air, clocking the clone feet first in the face. When he landed, he was now twisted so that his back was to the clone, and the clone’s arms were crossed over his chest, still attempting to hold on to him. Lotor flashed a confident smile at the watching Allura, and then reversed flipped, this time his feet hitting the clone on top of the head, before touching the ground. Then Lotor kicked him, and this time the clone released his grip. Lotor quickly followed up with another kick, pulling his knee as close against his chest as possible, before snapping the leg straight out, in the precise manner and motion used to break down doors.
The clone was launched backwards, and he stumbled about, almost falling to the ground. But somehow, he managed to stay upright, and with a growl, “Now I’m really mad!” came at Lotor again.
“Oh…” Lotor said mockingly. “What’s the matter?” The clone didn’t seem to be able to adapt as quickly as him, coming at him with the same exact attack he had tried before. “Can’t take a little competition?”
“Just wondering how you improved so quickly.” The clone said through gritted teeth, as their fists flew.
“I improved eh?” Lotor smiled. “Are you referring to that earlier scuffle where you CHEATED?!” It was true, he was doing better having not had dirt flung into his eyes, but that was not the only reason. This time he was battling with a clear head. Before, it had been quite a shock to see Allura embracing the clone. Hagger had prepared him with the news that the clone was chasing after her, but nothing had prepared for the sight of Allura enjoying it! This time, he entered preparing to see Allura with another man, and had steeled his emotions to not react with jealously. Only to see this time she was scared, and fighting him off. He felt anger at the clone, and fear that the clone’s actions may have ruined any chance he and Allura had at a future together. He channeled that into aggression, keeping his mind clear as he faced his opponent.
“I cheated? I think not!” scoffed the clone. “A superior being such as myself, does not need to cheat.”
“Fact is, you did cheat when you tried to blind me…so either you have a skewed view of events, or maybe you’re not so superior after all!” retorted Lotor.
“Try and comfort yourself with all the lies you need Prince Lotor.” The clone suddenly seemed to remember he had a sword on his belt. “It will change nothing.” He unsheathed his sword, activating the lazon.
“I have a sword too.” Lotor pointed out, activating his own sword.
“So you do…” The sword’s met, clanging against each other, soothing off sparks. Lotor’s sword slashed open the front of his uniform, scarring open the skin. Hissing in pain, the clone leapt away from Lotor, and considered the prince. He knew he was stronger and faster than him, but apparently there was something to be said about having actual battle experience, compared to just memories of it. It would take more than just brute force to beat Lotor, it would take some skill and maneuvering.
“Well?” Arching his eyebrow, Lotor gestured at him with his sword. “Your move.”
“…” The clone deactivated his sword. “I have decided.” He announced. “I will let you live a little bit longer.” He began backing away from Lotor. “It will be so much more delicious to let you think you still have a chance at surviving our final encounter…to steal that hope from you, when the light dies out of your eyes…that will be highly satisfying.”
“You’re bluffing.” Lotor told him. “You’re scared of failure and running away.” The clone didn’t respond. Instead he turned, and ran towards the river. “Oh no you don’t!” Lotor hurried after him. “You don’t get off so easily!”
The clone reached the river, and without pausing, dove into it’s wet embrace.
“DAMN!!” Lotor paused at the river bank, the water pooling around his ankles.
“Adieu Lotor!” The clone shouted. “Enjoy the woman while you can!” And his head submerged under water, taking off for parts unknown.
As for Prince Lotor, he stood there cursing, torn between going after him, and seeing to Allura. He didn’t debate long, choosing to return to the side of the woman he loved do dearly.
“Allura…” He said awkwardly. She probably hated him for what the clone had tried to do. “Allura…let me explain…”
“Kyaa! Don’t look at me!” She snapped, blushing as she turned her body from him.
“Ahhh! I’m sorry!” He turned too, feeling embarrassed. He hadn’t even realized her breasts were exposed! Her breasts…how tempted he was to turn around, and get a nice long view…but after what had almost happened, he knew he shouldn’t even try to cross that line. “Um…here…” He pulled off his uniform’s top, and handed to her.
“Thanks…” Allura said, surprised by this move. She quickly put it on, though it seemed ten sizes to big for her. She was practically swimming in it, the hem going down past her knee, the sleeves five inches past her fingertips. “You…you can turn around now…”
He turned, and burst out laughing. “You look ridiculous!”
“Hmph..thanks…” She said sourly. “And you…” Her eyes widened as she took in the sight of him topless. “Are breath taking!” She quickly blushed, ready to die from embarrassment from saying that aloud. She was also grateful that for once he didn’t jump on that line, and start in with his merciless teasing.
“Let’s see if we can’t fix this up a bit…” He said instead, taking hold of one of her arms. She wordlessly watched him, as he ripped part of the material off. What was left, he rolled back, making it into cuffs. He took hold of her left arm, and repeated the process.
“Er thanks…” Allura said, when he released her arm.
“You’re welcome.” Lotor studied her. “Now..if only we had something to keep that from being so baggy…it’ll snag on everything as we walk.”
“Um…I still have my belt…I could cinch it around here…won’t do much, but it’ll be an improvement.”
“Then do it.” Lotor said, already turning so he wouldn’t accidentally see anything when she pulled up the shirt to get at her belt. As for Allura, she was very surprised by how chivalrous he was being! She quickly undid her belt, letting the shirt fall back down, then fitting the belt around her waist, cinching it tight. “Well, that’s better.” She said, and he turned, nodding.
He sighed. He wasn’t entirely sure what to do either. “I guess…I guess I should start with the truth.”
“About the…the other Lotor.”
“I was wondering about that.” Allura said, stating the obvious. “Is he like some evil identical twin of yours?”
“In a way.” nodded Lotor. “He’s…he’s my clone.”
“A clone!” Allura exclaimed, shocked. “I thought they were outlawed!”
“In most of the Galaxy, yes.” Lotor shrugged. “We Drules tend to not follow other people’s rules. But we have not actually had much use for clones…they don’t make good enough slaves, since without magic, they are like newborns.”
“That clone of yours definitely did not act like a baby!” Allura pointed out. “Maybe a bit childish when it comes to, “see it, want it, take it” but then again…” She trailed off blushing, not wanting to say out loud that that’s how Lotor normally acted!
Lotor smiled, as though he could guess what she was thinking. “No, he was augmented by Hagger’s magic.”
“But, why?” Allura asked. “Why would you need a clone?”
Lotor hesitated. How could he tell her, his father wanted to replace him, cause Zarkon thought he was a useless coward?! “My father…”
“Ye-es?” She prodded him when he fell silent.
He sighed deeply. “My father wanted to replace me with more competent help.”
“Replace you?” Allura exclaimed, aghast at the thought.
Lotor nodded. “At least when it comes to battles.” He decided not to trouble her with his concerns that his father was probably planning to replace him with the clone permanently.
“But why!” exclaimed Allura. “You’re an excellent fighter…and a very good tactician. You’ve certainly given Arus a run for our freedom. We’ve been very lucky to hold out for so long.”
“I thank you for that vote of confidence.” He flashed her a brief smile. “I just wish my father felt the same way.” He sighed, sounding so depressed, that Allura reached out to him, laying her hand on his shoulder. He closed his eyes, drawing strength from that show of support. “I want you to know…” One hand reached up to quickly touch hers. “I’m nothing like him.”
“Him too.” agreed Lotor. “But also the clone…that is not me.”
“Isn’t he? He’s your clone Lotor!” She pointed out.
“Yes, the DNA strand is the same, but the personality…it’s different…warped, dangerous…Hagger said she made him to be void of any compassion or kindness…to be absolutely ruthless…Allura! You have to believe me!” He took her hand in both of his, clasping it almost reverently. “I would never force myself on a woman like that! I’ve never had to!”
“Well…” She contemplated his words, taking in his smooth, chiseled features, the exotic eyes…how his luxurious hair trailed down his back. She knew if she were to touch it, it would feel like silk. His face was handsome, years of war not forcing hard lines into his face, his expression still able to show joy. Her eyes glanced down, marveling over his chest, the muscles there, and the tight abdomen having a clearly defined six pack. It was very easy for Allura to believe that no, the Drule Prince did not have to do a lot of coercing to get a woman in bed. Why, he probably had thousands of women throwing themselves at him! And even with the one woman who had turned him down, time and time again, he had never gotten rough with her. He might have coped a feel here, and there, but he had never gone as far as his clone had tried to go.
She was about to answer him, that she did see the difference between him and his clone, but he misread her contemplation of his body as silence. Perhaps fearing she was about to bolt, and be forever out of his life, he began speaking, quick and nervous like. “Allura, I’ll do anything to prove myself to you. Even…” He had to pause, his breath coming out in shaky gasps. He could hardly dare to believe what he was about to say to her. “Take you back to your castle, and stop the robeast’s attack. And then…I’ll leave you alone…forever…”
She was too surprised to respond, and when he began leading her by the hand towards the direction of her home, she followed, almost sightlessly. She had a lot to think about, before they reached the castle.
“His highness returns!” One of the crewmen exclaimed excitedly.
“Well facilitate boarding procedures then!” ordered Hagger. She was excited to learn what had happened in his encounter with the clone. Had he been successful? Was the clone dead…what about the princess? They hadn’t said anything about him returning with a hostage…
“I need a drink.” Lotor’s familiar voice barked out angrily.
“Lotor! You’re finally back!” Hagger exclaimed, watching in amusement as men tripped over each other, rushing to fulfill his request. “How did it go…” Her eyes widened as she got a clear view of his face. “What happened to you?!”
“What do you think?!” He demanded with a snarl. “The clone proved too much for me!”
“Well, I did tell you to not rush out there, half cocked.” She tysked, conjuring bandages for his cheek. “You should let the men deal with him.”
“Hmm yes…the men…” He snatched the wine bottle out of the guard’s hand. “They might prove useful after all…what say we send…oh half a dozen of our best foot soldiers out to hunt him down?”
“An excellent idea sire!” Hagger said, coming near him to clean the wounds on his face. She frowned, noting the left eye was bruised. Apparently the clone had really done a number on the prince’s once perfect face. “But Lotor…what about the princess?”
“Princess?” He looked confused.
“Allura.” She reminded him.
“Oh. HER.” He sounded disgusted.
“Yes her, the love of your life.” Hagger said. “What should the men do if they run across the princess? Bring her back here?”
“No.” He said, shocking her. “Just leave her be…or…kill her on sight” He smiled, liking this idea better. “Either way, it does not matter to me, what her fate is.”
“Yes sire!” Hagger said, trying not to laugh joyfully. It seemed at long last her young liege was finally free of the spell that Arusian Slut had placed upon him. But just in case he changed his mind…she hurried off to pick out the men, and issue the orders to kill the clone and Princess Allura. And so, she missed hearing Lotor murmur, “After all, it’s her own fault…she brought this upon herself when she rebuffed me.”