Freedom 21

From the instant she had spotted Nanny standing behind Lotor, time had seemed to slow down to a crawl. Allura knew her eyes had widened, sure they reflected the danger she had seen. Lotor hadn’t seem to notice, too consumed with kissing her, his hands on her breasts, squeezing, kneading, making her nipples ache as they grew tight with need.
 

As the vase came crashing down, Allura had let out a cry, a warning that came too late. Lotor seemed to grunt against her, his lips ceasing their movements, his body growing heavy as he slumped forward on top of her. To be hit with the full weight of him was akin to having the wind knocked out of her, Allura crying out as she tried to push him off her.

Relief came in the form of her nanny, the woman’s hands reaching for the prince’s shoulders, hefting him up. Together, pushing and pulling, they got Lotor off Allura, the prince being deposited unceremoniously on the floor. Allura sat up staring, shock on her face as her Nanny tearfully cried out.

“Princess! Are you all right?!”

Allura did a slow blink of her eyes, turning to glance at her red faced Nanny. The woman was visibly upset, she vibrated with excited energy as her hands reached for Allura, yanking the bodice of her gown upwards to cover her exposed bosom. Allura blushed, embarrassed to have been seen in such a state. It was different from the times her nanny had helped her get dressed, more mortifying to have been seen being molested by her husband’s hands.

“Tch, you are in a state of shock.” Nanny tsked, going to sit down next to Allura. “I don’t blame you at all, poor child. Having that brute man handle you like that!” She went to draw Allura into her arms, intent on rocking her like a child.

That spurred Allura into action, the girl shoving away from her nanny’s embrace. “What have you done?!” Allura demanded, voice an angry whisper. Nanny opened her mouth to answer, but Allura was continuing. “How could you do that?! What were you thinking?!”

“I was thinking to save you from him!” Nanny exclaimed, Allura rising to stand. “He had his hands all over you! He wasn’t going to stop, I’m sure of it!”

“So…so you just attack him, is that it?” Allura asked, shaking her head. She stepped over to Lotor’s side, kneeling down next to him. Her hands touched his hair, knocking out the shards of the vase, feeling to make sure he wasn’t bleeding.

“What are you doing?” Nanny demanded, also standing up. Her hands were on her hips, and she frowned down at Allura. “Leave him!”

“I have to make sure he’s all right.” Allura said, gently trying to turn him on his back. “You could have really hurt him Nanny.”

“I was aiming to.” Nanny retorted. “Come princess, he’s still breathing. Leave him and let’s be gone from this place.” She stepped over Lotor’s body, skirts clutched in her hands. Allura glanced at her, but remained kneeling, her fingers pressed against the pulse point in Lotor’s neck. She sighed with relief to find it was still beating at a normal pace, Lotor rendered unconscious but otherwise unharmed. He’d most likely have a wretched headache upon awakening, and she knew his mood would suffer for it.

“Allura!” Nanny hissed, dropping the honorific in her agitation. “We don’t have much time. Stop fussing over him and come with me!” She appeared by Allura’s side, reaching down to grab hold of her arm. Allura let her drag her to her feet, but refused to budge when the woman tried to lead her out of the room. “Allura, every second we delay is a second we can’t afford. If we are going to leave the castle…”

“What? Leave the castle?” Allura stared at Nanny, shocked confusion dawning on her. “Oh no. We are not going to run away!”

“We have to!” Nanny said insistently, trying to bodily haul Allura along with her. Her weight was to her advantage, the slim girl being moved bit by bit by her nanny. “Oh….I didn’t have much time to plan…”

“Plan? Plan what?” Allura said, still struggling with the woman.

“It all happened so suddenly.” Nanny continued, muttering more to herself than Allura. She was coming off the high of adrenaline, starting to fret and worry as she realized what she had done. “If only the boys were here. One of them would slit his throat for us!”

“Nanny!” Allura exclaimed, horrified.

“It’s no less than he deserves!” Nanny retorted.

“Do you know what they would do to us if Lotor was to die?!” Allura demanded. She stifled a shudder at the thought of the torture that would await at the hands of Lotor’s men. And that would just be the beginning of it, before they were handed over to King Zarkon. “What would happen to our people, to the planet?”

“We’d hide..” Nanny said, and Allura shook her head no.

“They would tear apart the kingdoms searching for us! They would kill, torture and maim my people! Do you think I would allow that?”

“But…” Nanny began, and Allura gave a sharp jerk on her arm.

“But nothing!” Allura snapped. “Now cease this foolish prattle, stop these insane ideas and help me with my husband!”

“Stop being this way!” Nanny said, annoyance in her voice. “We can still make it to the secret passages. We can get out of here…”

“No.” Allura said firmly, and Nanny looked ready to shout. “You may leave if you’re that bothered by my husband and his…..affection towards me. But I am staying. In fact….” Allura sighed, sparing a glance towards Lotor. “It’s probably best if you do leave. Lotor won’t be pleased by what you have done.”

Nanny paled, but shook her head no. “I won’t leave you here alone with him.”

“Then you better help me think of a good reason why he should spare your life.” Allura said, seeing the woman close her eyes, her body shuddering at the thought. “I…I could bargain with him.” Allura began hesitantly, Nanny crying out in horror.

“Allura no! I will not have you giving him anything more than he has already taken from you.” Nanny said, voice heated. “I will not have you sacrifice your….your honor for me!”

“At this point, I have little else to bargain with.” Allura sighed, listening as Nanny let out a sob. “I know you thought to help me, but….”

“But I made the situation worse!” The woman said around sniffles, the back of her hand brushing at her wet eyes. “Oh child, I didn’t mean to force you into his arms! I am a failure as your guardian! What would your parents think of me now?!”

“Easy Nanny…you….well…” Allura hesitated, trying to think of the right words. “You meant well. It’s just you could have chosen a better way to react.”

“I cannot help it princess. When I…when I see him touching you, I lose all sense of reason!” Nanny confessed. “I just see red and act!”

“You’ll have to learn to control that.” Allura said, returning to Lotor’s side.

“I shouldn’t have to!” Nanny exclaimed. “This is all wrong….you were never meant to be this man’s wife. You should have been married to a good man, a kind man, someone who would be worthy of you.”

“We’ve all had to make do with what has happened.” Allura said, shifting Lotor so that his head was cushioned on her lap. “I can’t worry about should have beens. It’ll only serve to make me miserable. You would do well to follow my example.”

Nanny said nothing, pacing back and forth agitatedly in front of her. Allura sighed, glancing at Lotor’s face, her fingers going to rest in his hair. She began stroking them through it, knocking aside tiny bits of plaster as she petted him. Her eyes were intent on Lotor, she didn’t notice her nanny had stop to stare at them, until the woman was speaking.

“How can you stand to touch him?” The woman wanted to know, Allura glancing up to see her frowning at her. “After all that he’s done, all that’s he tried to do….?”

“He’s my husband.” Allura stated. “I would be in a terrible bind if I couldn’t tolerate his touch.”

“You look like you are doing a little more than tolerating touching him.” Nanny said, frown deepening.

“….Please get me a wet towel.” Allura said, her words a gentle order. Nanny hmphed, clearly annoyed at her changing the subject. The woman flounced into the bathroom, intent on retrieving the item Allura asked for. The princess sighed, and resumed stroking Lotor’s hair, thinking to herself this was the second time he had gotten hurt because one of her loved ones sought to protect her from him.

“Here…” The towel was thrust into Allura’s face, the princess nodding her thanks as she took it. Nanny watched with a sour expression on her face as Allura began dabbing the towel against Lotor’s skin. A packet of ice would have been preferable, but right now Allura settled for this, not wanting suspicions to be aroused at her nanny’s comings and goings.

“Hmmm….” Lotor’s lips parted, a moan issuing from him. He started to turn his head, and he flinched from apparent pain.

“Shh…” Allura said, one hand stroking his hair, the other holding the towel to the side of his head. “Don’t try to move….not yet.”

“Allura?” His eyes slowly blinked open, the golden glow slightly dull from pain. He ignored her words, trying to sit up immediately, and he growled out his pain.

“I told you not to move!” She said, pushing him back down, so his head lay on her lap. He sighed, and settled down, peering up at her curiously.

“What happened? Why do I feel like a robeast just plowed into me?”

“Well…” Allura glanced away from him, her eyes falling on Nanny. “It’s a….interesting story…”

“Do tell…” Lotor said, following her gaze towards Nanny. He gave a start of recognition, once again attempting to sit up. “YOU!!” He growled out, swaying uncertainly as he reached for his sword. Allura inwardly cursed, regretting not having removed the weapon from his side.

“Lotor, calm down!” Allura began, but he continued to snarl.

“It was you, wasn’t it?! You attacked me! I could have you killed for this!” Lotor said, fingers curling around the hilt of his sword. Nanny made a sound, eyes wide with fright, though she didn’t back down and cower for her life.

“Lotor no!” Allura cried out, wrapping her arms around him from behind. She pressed herself against his back, her face buried against his shoulder. “Please, it was a misunderstanding!”

“A misunderstanding?! Tell that to my throbbing head!” Lotor snapped, though he wasn’t attempting to fight her hold on him. Allura was grateful for that, knowing he could easily break free of her grip.

“Nanny just got carried away, didn’t you Nanny?” Allura asked, sending a sharp glance at the woman. She nodded, swallowing nervously.

“Yes. I…I overreacted. For that I am…I am sorry.” It pained the woman to apologize to Lotor, they could both see it on her face, the way she struggled to get out the words.

“And what if sorry is not good enough?” Lotor demanded.

“Lotor!” Allura exclaimed.

“Allura forgive me, but I can’t have word getting out that a servant was allowed to strike a member of the royal family without repercussions!” He retorted, and this time he did try to stand.

Allura helped him up, letting him put an arm across her shoulders for support. “Lotor please….she won’t talk. You have my word on that. And neither will I. No one need know what happened except for the three of us.” He was swaying a little as he stood, leaning heavily on her. She tried to urge him to sit down on the love seat, but he remained standing, lifting his sword to point it threateningly at Nanny.

“Lotor no!” Allura cried out, her hand reaching for his, trying to push it back down. “Nanny please….go get us a glass of water. I need a moment alone with my husband.”

“Yes princess…” Nanny hurried to the relative safety of the bathroom, the door closing behind her. Allura glanced at Lotor who was scowling in the direction the woman had fled, and this time she succeeded in getting him to sit down on the love seat.

“Lotor please…I know what she did was wrong…” Allura began, and he waved his hand dismissively at her.

“If you know, then you will allow me to do what I must to correct this insult!” Lotor said, and she shook her head.

“I can’t allow you to kill her!” Allura exclaimed. “Please Lotor….disicpline her if you must, demote her to a lower rank of servant, but do not take her life! For me….please…” He was saying nothing, his mouth set in a stubborn angle as he looked at her sullenly. “Lotor….” Allura kneeled before him, her body positioned between his spread legs. “What must I do to get you to drop this?”

He just looked at her, and she felt her eyes welling up with frustrated tears. Holding back a sob, she pressed against him, her face resting on his chest. Her hands gripped his jacket, material gripped tightly in her fists. “Lotor please….I….I’ll do anything….ANYTHING…” She said, heavily stressing the word. “To save her.”

His hands reached for her, Lotor guiding her face to look up at his. “She means that much to you that you would debase yourself like this?” Allura nodded. trying not to shiver as he caressed her cheek.

“Allura….” He sighed out her name, hands dropping to her shoulders. She watched him warily, waiting to see what he would do, the man’s hands sliding down to grasp hold of her upper arms. Wordlessly he urged her to stand, not quite smiling as he looked at her. She did so, waiting for him to say or do something, surprised when he wrapped his arms around her, sighing into her ear. His breath rustled her hair, his voice soft and weary. “I’ve never known such devotion to anyone….let alone a servant.”

He was pulling her to perch on his knee, still holding her in that awkward hug. “She’s more than a servant…” Allura said at last, Lotor pulling back to peer at her face. “She’s like a mother to me. She raised me from a small child…”

“I too was raised by servants….” Lotor admitted, Allura looking at him in surprise. “Somehow it was just a job to them. I was nothing more than a paycheck. But it’s different with you and your Nanny, yes?”

“Yes.” Allura said, hoping he truly understood. “So please Lotor…don’t hurt her…”

“All right…I won’t.” He said, and she was so relieved she would have fallen off his lap if not for his arms’ support. Instead she twisted about, returning his hug, almost shaking with relief. She felt his hands stroke down the back of her hair, that soft touch surely meant to soothe her.

“Thank you…..thank you…” Allura whispered over and over again, feeling a hint of tears on her cheeks. She felt Lotor’s arms tightening about her, his grip possessive and she didn’t fight him, clinging to him.

“You can come out now.” Lotor called out to Nanny, the bathroom door creaking open as the woman cautiously poked her head out into the room. From her position she couldn’t see Nanny’s face, but she heard the sharp intake of breath, the sound disapproving. “I’m going to allow you to live.” Lotor began, keeping Allura pressed against him. His voice was terse, dissatisfaction at the heart of it as he spoke. “I’ll even consider forgetting about what happened here today. You can thank my WIFE for this kind gesture.”

“I…”

“However you won’t get a second chance.” Lotor continued, speaking over Nanny. “Do remember that the next time the urge strikes you to hit me over the head with some expensive piece of furniture.”

“I will behave.” Nanny said at last, voice tight with tension.

“See that you do.” Lotor told her, hands still playing with Allura’s hair. “And be grateful you get to keep your job, albeit at a loss of status.”

“What?” Nanny’s voice was sharp as she questioned him. “Just what do you mean?”

“You are being demoted.” Lotor said. “You will no longer be the head of the household servants.”

“You cannot do this. Allura, stop him!”

“That’s princess Allura to you.” Lotor corrected her with a sneer. “Do not think to be so familiar with either one of us.”

“But…” Nanny began, Allura shifting in Lotor’s arms. “I have been the head maid for over fifteen years! Who will run things, who will see that the girls do their duties?”

“Someone other than you.” Lotor said, and laughed.

“Princess!”

“Nanny…” Allura said, feeling weary. “Just go…you…you forced this situation upon yourself with your actions this day.”

“Yes.” Lotor purred, Allura catching sight of his grin. “Leave us. I want to be alone with my wife.” Nanny made a sound, outrage at the heart of it. But her footsteps were heard, the woman leaving the room in a hurry. The door slammed shut behind her, and only then did Lotor allow Allura free of his embrace.

She stayed on his knee, looking at him uncertainly. He looked back at her, expression unreadable. “Thank you Lotor…” She finally spoke, her hands gong to his shoulders.

“You’re welcome Allura.” He said, watching her carefully as she drew herself close to him, the princess trembling with nervousness as tilted her face towards his. He stayed watching her, not moving and not speaking as she let her lips brush against his. He didn’t respond, leaving her to frown as she pushed her mouth more insistently against his, her fingers reaching to touch his hair.

Tentatively, she allowed her lips to part, nervous as her tongue traveled forward to lick across his lips. It was the first time she had tried to initiate so deep a kiss, Allura worrying at her inexperience. She knew she was clumsy as she worked to coax his mouth open, trying to mimic all the ways he had kissed her. She must have done something right, his hands ended up on her hips, fingers digging into her skin as he began to respond. His lips parted, his tongue came forth to push against hers, Allura allowing their tongues to entwine in a caress of wet velvet.

Her hands slid upwards, fingers still in his hair, and she brought them now to clutch as his head, trying to hold him in place as they kissed. They both made pleased sounds, Allura’s soft, Lotor more vocal as he moaned and growled into her mouth.

His hands were behaving themselves, still holding onto her torso, leaving Allura to wonder if he was going to make her lead this encounter. She trembled at the thought, not sure she could do more than kiss him, when unexpectedly, he pulled away from her lips. Her brow furrowed, she looked at him, not understanding.

“Allura….” Lotor sighed, bowing his head so that their foreheads touched. He stared into her eyes, a hand lifting to touch her cheek. His fingers brushed back her curls, his lips moving as he continued. “That’s enough….”

“Is it?” She asked, confused. “But I thought…”

“Yes, I know what you thought.” Lotor interrupted her, mouth not quite smiling. “You expected that I would make you have sex with me in return for your nanny’s life.”

“…..” Allura said nothing, fighting a frown.

“But I….I don’t want you this way.” Lotor explained. “Not if you view it as nothing more than a sacrifice. Another duty to your people.”

“Then…..why?” Allura asked, as he eased her off his knee. She stood before him, frowning, needing to understand his motives.

“Why did I let your nanny get away with it?” He asked, and she nodded. Lotor feel silent, thinking it over. “It was enough.” He said at last. “Enough that you were willing to offer such a gift to me.”

“A gift you’re turning down.” She noted.

“For now yes.” Lotor agreed, standing up. She watched him concerned, but he appeared steady on his feet now. “Calm yourself Allura. I won’t be making you do anything you are loathe to do on this day.”

“What about tomorrow?” Allura asked, turning to follow him as he walked past her. “Or the day after?”

“I’m not promising to keep my hands off you.” Lotor paused at the door. “And I want you to know. Your nanny will not suffer for any future refusals you give me.”

“I don’t understand you.” Allura said, frowning at him. “I’m willing to give you what you’ve wanted, what you’ve been after these past few days. Why do you turn me down now?”

“It is meaningless if you give yourself to me not because you want to, but because you fear for another.” Lotor said, and with that he was opening the doors. “You’ll come to me willingly, or not at all.”

“That may never happen…” Allura whispered as he strode through the doorway. But she felt a pang in her heart at her words, Allura frowning as she sank back down on the wicker seat. She buried her face in her hands, but she did not give into tears, mulling over this new emotion that ate away at her. She hated to admit it, even to herself, but there was some part of her heart that felt disappointed at the thought of never joining together with her husband.


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