Freedom 20

The command center was alive with sights and sounds, computers beeping, lights blinking. Computer consoles lined the room’s walls, following the curve of it as the walls formed a circular space around the floor. In the center of the room there stood a giant computer, situated on top of a raised platform. From his spies’ reports, Lotor knew this platform could go higher yet, revealing the chutes that led to a complex series of tunnels. These tunnels reached all around the planet, leading those who would risk going down them into the depths of the lions lairs.

Already his men had explored some of those lairs, traveling in small groups to the heart of them, taking pictures, collecting data. The gathered information was awaiting Lotor’s attention, the prince eager to know what they had learned. It would be a while before they returned the lions to the lairs, his technicians would be examining them thoroughly. Their secrets would be ferreted out, their inner workings revealed as Doom’s best scientists sought to recreate the machines Allura’s father had designed.

Smiling to himself, Lotor walked over to the main computer, placing both his hands palm down on the metal. It seemed to hum with power, warm to the touch as he scrutinized the buttons. Soon he would learn how to work this machine, Lotor looking forward to paying a personal visit to black lion’s lair. He had always been impressed by that lion’s strength and speed, and he smirked to think of learning to control such power with his own two hands.

He glanced up from the computer, looking around the room, satisfaction in his eyes as he took in the sight of his people manning the work stations. There was nothing but Drules in the room, all working diligently to learn everything they could about the castle. The building was another marvel of King Alfor’s, it could be converted into a giant space ship at a moment’s notice. Lotor could still remember how astounded he had been when the castle had taken off into the air to avoid his fleet’s attack. Now at last he would have the full knowledge of how such a thing had been accomplished.

He was like a little boy with new toys, giddy at the thought, eager to play with them all. He straightened, reaching into his jacket’s pocket, removing a velvet lined box. Inside it was the five keys to the lions, taken forcibly off the members of the Voltron Force. How he had laughed, victory at the heart of that sound when Commander Hashish handed him this prize.

Lotor spared a thought to the five space explorers, knowing one of his ships had ejected them into the emergency life pods. The five fools would be carried to Garrison’s front step, ready to face discipline for their attack on Doom. He almost wished he could attend the proceedings, sure they would prove entertaining. But he was a very busy man, he had far more pressing matters to attend to.

One last look at the box, Lotor then depositing it back into his jacket. He’d have to find a safe hiding place for the keys. Somewhere he could leave them without fear that they would be stolen. For now he would settle for carrying them on his person, Lotor confidant no one would be able to steal them away from him.

He sat down in the chair before the computer, his feet propped up on the keyboard. A soldier approached him, a low bow offered up to the prince as the man awaited acknowledgment. “What?” Lotor asked, sparing a side glance at the man.

“Prince Lotor sir, the ship with your harem has arrived.”

“They’re not my harem anymore.” Lotor corrected him with a sigh. “Though the Gods know I am very much in need of their services.” This last thing was muttered under his breath, the solider peering curiously at the prince.

“Sir?”

“Never mind.” Lotor grumbled. “See that a few of them are stationed at the castle. Let them learn to be maids and cooks.”

“And for the others?” The soldier wanted to know.

Lotor gave an uncaring shrug of his shoulder. “Distribute them among the men.” The soldier smiled, a lusty look in his eyes. “They can help make the first Arus born Drules. And it will keep the soldiers from chasing the skirts of the village women.”

“Yes sir….” The soldier hesitated. “Permission to speak freely?”

“You may.” Lotor said, and the soldier smiled relieved.

“The men are growing restless. The women can keep them distracted only for so long. They want action….” said the soldier.

“They’ll have to learn to go without.” Lotor told him. “The occupation of Planet Arus will be a peaceful mission.” The soldier looked displeased, Lotor flashing his fangs at him as he smiled. “Of course, any of my men who have a problem with peace can go back to Doom. They can explain to my father why they refused to do their duty.” He laughed at the frightened look on the man’s face, the soldier quick to shake his head no.

“Go now.” Lotor ordered, giving him a dismissive look. “Relay my words to the men. Let them decide what course they want to take.”

“Yes sir!” A salute, and then the soldier was hurrying away, Lotor realizing the other Drules in the room had been listening to their conversation.

“That goes for all of you.” Lotor said, leveling a sharp glance around the room.

“But what about the recent attacks by the Arusians?” A nervous looking technician spoke up, hands paused over his keyboard. The others in the room mumbled their agreement, voices speaking up.

“My best friend was killed in a riot.”

“These surface dwellers are getting violent.”

“They fight back more ferociously than they ever did when Voltron was around.”

“I say we fight back. It’s only fair.”

“Forget about fair! I say we round up a few, and kill them as examples to the Arusians!”

Cheers erupted at that last one, the Drules eager and agreeable to such an act. Lotor bit back a sigh, leaping to his feet, chair clattering as it tumbled backwards to the floor. “Silence!” He cast a furious look at his people, a hand on his hips, fingers touching the handle of his sword. The men noticed where his hand was, voices dying down as they stared wide eyed at their prince.

“We will honor the treaty. We will not strike back at the Arusians with deadly force. Am I making myself clear?” Lotor glared at them, seeing the reluctance in their eyes as they nodded their consent. “Good. Continue as you were.” Lotor said, leaping off the platform.

His back was to them when he heard a voice whisper near to him. “Boy….marriage sure has changed him.” Lotor’s sword was already unsheathed, the hum of lazon in the air as the man’s finished his snide comment. “And not for the better.”

Too late did he notice Lotor approaching him, deadly intent in his eyes. The other Drules backed away, wary of the prince’s mood. “Change have I? I’ll show you how changed I truly am!” His arm was swinging, his sword a light blue blur as it sliced neatly into the man’s neck. His face was one of stunned surprised, mouth open in a silent scream as his head was torn free of his neck.

The head hit the floor with a thump, rolling to a stop before Lotor’s booted foot. “Now….” The prince growled, sheathing his sword. “Anyone else want to object to how I run things around here?”

“No sir!”

“Nu uh!”

“Never had a problem with you sir!”

“I thought so.” A grim smile on his face, Lotor kicked the head away from him. “Someone clean this mess up.” He thought about ordering them to be quiet about what had happened, Lotor not wanting Allura to learn of this killing. But the benefits far outweighed the disadvantages. The men would talk, the story would be retold among them, the Drules learning that marriage had not made the prince any softer when it came to insubordination and back talk.

Still growling, Lotor strode out of the room, intent on returning to Allura’s side. As he walked, he thought about her planet, wondering how much trouble it would prove to be. Already there was signs of resistance, the people fighting back as well they could. They were weaponless, needing to rely on tools used for farming, pitchforks and their own fists. They couldn’t hope to stand up against blaster rifle, and yet they still persisted in causing disturbances.

Lotor knew the quickest way to put down a rebellion was to grab a few people, regardless of whether or not they were actual rebels, and summarily execute them in a public venue. But he knew Allura would never agree to that, his bride would be horrified to hear such a thing suggested. “Perhaps I can throw them all in jail for a while.” Lotor muttered to himself.

That would be a peaceful way to ends thing. But would it succeed in breaking up the rebel factions? Lotor simply did not know, realizing he would have to get his best men on it. They would just have to learn to think in new ways, discover less violent ways to deal with an unruly people.

But for now, he would put the thoughts of Arus behind him, Lotor wanting nothing more than to spend some time alone with Allura. He looked forward to seeing her in her natural environment, hoping the castle and it’s people would lift her spirits. She might even smile at him, if he was lucky, Lotor congratulating himself on how generous he was to allow her to visit with those two servants of hers.

He was grinning as he walked, ignoring the human servants who gasped and flattened themselves against the walls. Ordinarily he would be amused by their fear, but now he barely noticed, too eager to be back by his bride’s side.

He soon reached the grand hall, and hurried through it towards the adjoining hall. It was now cleared of almost all servants, the humans having returned to their duties after they greeted their princess. He walked past rows of doors, trying to remember which one Allura had gone into.

A sound was heard, gleeful feminine laughter, Lotor recognizing it as Allura’s. He followed the sound of her happiness, his sharp ears leading him to a door at the far end of the corridor. His fist closed around the knob, pulling the wood open, and the laughter drifted out into the hallway. He paused in the doorway, taking a moment to watch Allura.

Her hands were raised before her face, clasped together as she giggled at the creatures in front of her. Those mice of hers, doing acrobatics, handstands and back flips. A little show that had his princess expressing true joy. She was a dazzling sight to behold when she laughed, her blue eyes lively, her sweet lips curved into a smile.

Her joy however was short lived, that advisor of her issuing out a sharp warning.

“Princess!”

That nanny of hers was scowling, rising to stand and glare at Lotor. The mice screeched in terror, the biggest of them putting it’s little hands on its hips. Unlike the other three, it growled, a high pitch sound that was more comical than threatening. Allura turned her face towards him, and he was sad to watch the transformation in her, the smile dying as a more serious expression over took her.

“No need to stop on my account.” Lotor said, and Allura shook her head no.

“I hadn’t realized the hour was up yet.”

“It’s been more than an hour.” Lotor corrected her. “I got…detained.”

“Oh.” Lotor tried not to show he was affected by the fact she hadn’t noticed he was late, telling himself she was bound to be overcome with the reunion with her caregivers. But still it hurt that he could slip so easily from her thoughts.

“Come Allura…I want to get us settled in our quarters.” Lotor said, holding out his hand to her. She glanced at her nanny, as though asking for permission. The woman was shaking her head no, mouth looking small as she fought to keep her true feelings from showing. “Allura?” A hint of impatience in his tone, the princess sighing as she rose from her seat. The mice squealed, making protests but she ignored them, returning to Lotor’s side.

He smiled, taking hold of her arm, deigning to nod at her caregivers. “Good day advisor….nanny…” He was already leading Allura out of the room, not bothering to wait for a response.

Once out in the hall, Allura tried to take the lead, heading towards a stair case. He let her guide him up those stairs, and onto the second floor. But when she turned to head down a corridor, he stopped her amused. “And just where do you think we are going?”

“Uh….to my bedroom?”

“No….we are going to OUR bedroom. And it’s not located down that hall.” He began tugging her in the opposite direction, Allura following him, her feet stepping quicker as she frowned.

“But there’s nothing in that part of the castle except for…” Her face paled, and she shook her head, trying to stop him. “Oh no….you musn’t….you can’t mean to…”

“Mean to what Allura?” Lotor asked her.

“My parent’s chambers are that way.” Allura whispered. “You can’t mean to take over their rooms.”

“Why not?” Lotor asked. “They are the largest rooms in the castle, and my people have already seen to moving our belongings into the room.”

“Why didn’t you ask me before you did that?!” Allura demanded, being reluctantly dragged along behind him.

“I didn’t realize it would be such a problem.” Lotor answered.

“You can stay in those chambers if you like…” Allura began. “I will be returning to MY room.”

“Allura, no. We’ve spent enough time apart. It’s time we start acting like husband and wife. And the first step to doing that is to share a bedroom.” He explained patiently to her.

“I’m not comfortable doing that!” Allura said, Lotor reaching the double doors that led into the foyer of her parent’s chambers. He pushed open the unlocked doors, the oak carved with two guardians lions, and polished to a fine sheen. A quick glance around the room showed a white wicker love seat, Lotor leading Allura to it. He sat her down on the pale blue cushions, Lotor placing his hands on her shoulders.

“Allura…” He said, bending over her so that he was level with her face. “You may never grow comfortable with me if I don’t constantly test your boundaries. I’m not asking for much….I’m not asking you to have sex with me tonight. Just to sleep with me, like we did back on Doom. Remember? When you had that nightmare? I behaved myself then…I can do it now.”

She was still looking uncertain, shaking her head no. He couldn’t resist, his next words came out as a tease, Lotor’s eyes twinkling with mischief. “Or is it yourself that you do not trust? Are you afraid you won’t be able to keep your hands to yourself?”

She gave him an annoyed look, hardly amused by his words. “You are not as irresistible as you like to think you are.”

“Believe me I know. These past few days have been a real eye opener.” Lotor told her. “My ego has suffered enough bruises at your delicate hands.” He caught one now, lifting it up to his face, kissing across her knuckles. He maintained eye contact while his lips touched her skin, Allura flushing and looking away. He smiled, his free hand reaching to capture her chin, turning her back towards him.

“I love it when you blush.” He teased her. “It’s very fetching.”

“I don’t do it to look good.” She retorted, trying to ignore his thumb brushing her bottom lip.

“I think anything would look good so long as it was you doing it.” Lotor told her, watching with glee as her blush deepened. He let go of her, moving to sit next to her on the love seat. His arm slipped over her shoulders, drawing her against him, Allura placing a hand against his chest. Her rings twinkled in the light of the room, Lotor reaching to cover her hand with his own.

“Do you not ever get tired of flattering me?” She asked.

“No never.” Lotor responded, ducking his head towards her, sniffing at her hair. She tried to shift away, but his hand kept her pinned, Lotor nuzzling his face down the side of hers.

“Lotor…” She began, but he was intent on his prize, lips seeking out hers for a kiss. Whatever she had been about to say was lost to his mouth, Allura making a muffled sound in response to his kiss. Hesitant at first, he soon had her responding, lips moving against his in a pleasing motion. She parted her mouth without his asking, Lotor stifling a smirk at her willingness.

He chose to tease her by denying her his tongue’s caress, Lotor breaking the kiss, to chuckle against her jaw. His lips nibbled the sweet flesh along it’s line, Allura closing her eyes, actually leaning into his mouth’s movements. Her breathing was quickening, the flush of hers remaining on her cheeks as she held back her sounds.

In the midst of his seduction, the doors creaked open, that woman, that nanny of hers entering the room, feather duster in hand. Her eyes immediately sought the couple out on the love seat, her face flushing an angry red. But she said nothing, moving over to the dust the bureau in the corner. Lotor smirked, but otherwise ignored the woman, used to having servants around him at all times, even in the midst of love making.

Indeed the thought of that opinionated woman watching, seemed to spur him on, Lotor easing an unaware Allura down onto the cushions of the love seat. Allura looked up at him, opening her mouth to say something. Instead he kissed her, occupying her mouth with his tongue, his hands roaming over her body. The velvet of her dress was warm to the touch, soft and delightful, Lotor caressing the front of her belly several times.

When his hands moved towards her breasts, the girl began making protesting sounds, her hands pushing at his shoulders. “Lotor…” Allura managed to get out. “We can’t…especially not here!”

“Then where Allura?” He didn’t wait for an answer, reclaiming her mouth with his. His hands were cupping her breasts, causing them to rise up out of her dress. A loud moan escaped her as he ran his fingers over her nipples, finding them already protruding from just a simple touch. He rubbed circles into them, determined to set her on fire. His concentration was solely on Allura, he didn’t notice the widening of her eyes until too late.

Something hit him in the back of his head, shards of plaster falling all around him. He had that much time to identify the pieces as an expensive vase that had been in the corner of the room before he was falling. Lost to darkness, Lotor collapsed on top of Allura.


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