Chapter 1

Just a note: There is minimal content about what may take place in a BDSM environment. SOL has many authors that will provide you content and a set of dialogues. In general, most BDSM arrangements are by consent, the levels range from mild to fetish. Those that involve children or are not by adult consent are vile and should never be considered even in faux. The few portions of this story that deal with some clubs, are ones that follow a show type model as was part of the description of the club in Spain.

The clubs are one of the few public, semi-public places that the rich and powerful may visit. Private social clubs, Casinos and Resorts are others. The setting of Middle Europe is used, France, Germany, Switzerland, Turkey and the Russias are the locations which most of the story will focus on, although Odessa is real and worldwide. Much of the things mentioned have appeared in public and military records. The story is fiction.

At some 'hide' in the countryside:

The hide had been provisioned with food (tasteless), water, limited ammo and some of the older .338 Lapua and .50 Barrett weapons. A few hides had begun to include the .416 but none here had those or any of the new thermal scopes.

Breathing air was cooled or heated within the vest before it was discharged to match the ambient temperature. This 'sanction' was to be about two miles and should not be considered possible because of the distance. Time was a slight problem but it was other things, which made this a difficult assignment. I knew at least two other assets would be there, but I hoped that the message that would be broadcast would make multiple kills un-necessary. A sanction is an assassination sponsored by some legitimate body.

It was not that it would be a hard climb, but that it would take a long time. The site had been prepared years ago. At a time that even the houses and compounds had not been built. In 2008 the average kill range was 1,000 - 1,500 meters. Most kills required two shots, or even more if armour or plate glass was in use.*

*(a kill is not the same as shooting at a range target; body armour and various armoured glass made all but a head shot not feasible at a distance. The target record is held by two Canadians for target shots only )

The hide site was within the mountain itself and had tunnels leading out six sides. Normally an ascent like this would be done under the cover of darkness, but now, in 2014, in the real world of a sanction, the use of drones, thermal imaging and comparative mapping from satellites made daytime the best time to advance. For some reason, more data gathering and comparison was being done in the day.

I had taken the Mark VIII thermal scope and a Bowden Eliminator chambered for a .416 round. These combined the range of the .50, and the variety of cartridges for the .338 Lapua. This .416 had computer controls, and three of the newer rounds could be configured while in flight. 'The Sabot', 'The Accelerator', and 'The Exploding' round could also be guided on target from remote aerial and/or satellite guidance.

Vehicle penetration and sheer energy did not match the .50 cal depleted uranium round, but the range and accuracy of the .416 made it an ideal choice against soft targets. The Sabot round would defeat all body armour and glass, while the other rounds, except the mercury-filled, would kill at a range of at least two miles away, however no one had the ability to shoot two or three times for such a kill.

Even until 2012, just over one mile was the best kill range the .416 could achieve. Thermal-free hood, gloves, boots, vest and pants were always worn under the white or camo outerwear. Heating and cooling sections were used to keep the user comfortable. Breath usually needed to be cooled, so doing this while heating the body required special gear. Weight was always the limiting factor. Hydro packs kept water cool or warm but food was more like that in a spacecraft, and only small amounts of ammo could be carried. The old maxim of 'one shot, one kill' was always in mind.

Getting up to the cave was to take several days. When the first ultimatum was given, the Premier had gone to the bunker along with his staff. The cat and mouse game continued for a while. One last comment was made in the message the premier received. It merely made an apology for what was to happen and indicated that no more requests to him would follow, to use this remaining time to ready himself and say goodbye to friends and family. His next actions would dictate the number of kills that would occur.

ur.

Once the order and failsafe were issued, nothing further would be broadcast or would be heard. This was both good and bad. Good because it meant things would soon be over, bad because without communications, if things changed many others may die, even one or more of us. Once in the cave we had ammo for ten to twenty targets, and food (more like paste) and water (worst desert case) for ninety days or more. We carried no IDs, used no uniforms or insignias and did not rely on our extraction from a client's resource, we would be on our own. We were paid up-front, and most casualties came from those hired by the client to eliminate 'us', the shooter(s), for security purposes I am certain. I say 'us, ' only because a few had been trained at the same places and been in teams during several previous conflicts. It was there where we learned the 'fallacy' of trusting the government or client.

Once un-leashed, completion of the assignment was normally due within seventy-two hours. Most clients were government or military, since a satellite broadcast was normally used to start the clock. Prices were between three and five million dollars; with a few as high as ten million(each), under special circumstances.

This was one of those specials. The target was well protected, and there was only a small window of opportunity. But there was an alternate target, if the primary could not be removed. There would be only one shot, and a kill was expected. The client had provided this mountain cave. Now my location was known and if I were to be terminated, well, just say there would be a small follow-up action.

It was an agreement a few of us had made with each other. If one of the four of us was given an assignment, then terminated, retribution from the others made that event a breach of our security, most clients found a need for this security very rare.

Even while waiting; Max was always on my mind. How that young girl could have gotten so badly to me, I'd never understand. I wanted to hate her. The ease of her actions and her obvious intelligence made that difficult.

"Game on, it's Showtime children" followed by the password, came though the headset.

I removed the frequency chip, and then placed it into a glass-lined vial of acid where it would soon dissolve.

I prepared for the kill. One of the two targets was on the way. Inside the compound was a large house with the primary target inside. He was well guarded and every window was Armolamex III glass*. The Sabot could penetrate that but if the target was wearing body armour and at this distance only a head shot would kill. I waited, knowing that the secondary would now be my target.

* Armoured glass is a clear security glass composed of several clear glass panes sandwiched with layers of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) and a layer of polycarbonate on the inside or centre. Armoured cars use Armolamex VI or better, that will stop an armour piercing .50(4-5 even) or a special sabot or chemical round (only 1 folks). The passenger cage is secured for 45-60 minutes except for a tank, howitzers, mini gun fire or greater fire power like a bomb or a laser or repeated chemical attacks to the same spot.(The driver goes on the first hit usually a RPG round or tank mine or both.)

In about an hour, three cars pulled into the courtyard. A tall man opened the rear door of the car and a little girl ran out. As she reached the door, it opened. She ran up and hugged her father just as my shot was released. I saw them both tumble down. The explosive round had reduced their heads to mere pieces.

Killing both seemed the kindest thing to do. The child would always blame herself if she had lived, so would the father if only she was killed. It was better this way. I began the long way home, wherever that was...

I had told Paulie that I would call him when I got back. I put off calling, and went on a holiday to Rio. The beach was like many others around the world, but looking up one could watch huge condors floating above on the thermal currents. After a week of this and turning away questionable ladies, it was time to return. I had pretty much decided to retire. I had saved a decent amount of money. This last job had pumped up my nest egg to over thirty-five million. One last call to Paulie, from a throwaway phone, and John Symthe would disappear forever.

I called Paulie. He asked me where I was. Not something he had ever done. He wanted to meet me. I knew he was not alone and seemed to need help. I told him I was headed out on another assignment and might see him at our usual place next month. Then I hung up, removed the SIM chip and disposed of the phone. We had no usual place and it was a signal that I would find him and try to help.

When I called, I had been outside his home. After our chat, I began to view the outside as well as many thermal views within the house. My own thermal signature was obscured by the clothes I had worn, and I decided night was my friend, here. There had been six others in the house with Paulie.

At about 0200 hours, I entered the house by quietly opening the second floor patio.

As soon as I entered, a voice spoke, "Hello, Ryan. Why did you leave me?"

I was caught. Me, who had to live by my wits for most of my life, now I was facing my worst enemy.

"Hi, Marcia, long time no see."

"You miserable dog, you! Do you know how many times I went looking for you? I thought we were a thing. Daddy thought so too, when I told him. Why did you run out on me?"

"Would you believe that I went to the store, was hit in the head; and had a sudden loss of memory?" She glared at me.

"Well then, maybe because you were in love with me but I was not with you. You were always smothering me. We never talked about us, it was always what you wanted, never what I thought about anything. I got tired of just being your date at yet another party. There was never anyone else for me, but you just seemed to want to drag me along as your pet or toy."

Marcia slightly nodded her head.

"Paulie works for Daddy, you know? I knew this was one way that you would come back. You can go to Paulie's funeral, now."

I lunged for her, grabbed her, ready to squeeze the very life out of her. She just placed her arms around my neck and kissed me.

"Kidding! The boys only took him out to a nice dinner. It did not take much to convince him to help. Even he thought we made a nice couple. When he told me about that Bimbo(Max) he had set you up to work for, I got this plan ready."

Now what I going to do? Marcia had been held for ransom five years ago when I had rescued her. Paulie had told me that her father was very appreciative and wanted to thank me in person. Paulie mentioned that it was the kind of invitation that I could not refuse.

Gino(Her Dad) was about twelve years older than I was. When I called to let Paulie know Marcia was safe, maybe. He had sent a car over for us. We were taken to, what I assumed was his estate. The three of us were served what, by my appetite, was one of the best meals I ever had. Later a drink was served and we made a toast. "To friends!" he said. "If you ever need anything, tell Paulie. It will be taken care of." He reached into a drawer near his chair and handed me something. I opened the box and inside was a ring. It was heavy gold with a design and a small stone set in the middle. I put it on, and it fit.

Gino said, "I won't insult you with more money, now, but you are a family friend, and are under our protection. It will be of great interest for you to know that if anyone does kill you, a vendetta will result," He laughed and added, "Then we shall dance and drink at your funeral."

I had been invited to several social events since then. At least once a year there was some family event where Gino would introduce me and hug and kiss me on both cheeks. I had watched Marcia grow up. When she was to graduate high school, I got a call from Paulie. 'There was a problem at Gino's, would I go there and do him a favour?'

What kind of a favour I wondered. Gino was by this time like my brother. There was nothing that we would not do for each other. By now even the guards knew me, my car, and Gino had given me the security codes to the house and grounds. I drove up to the door, went up to the door and the butler and two guards were before me. "You need to see Gino, right now, things are really bad," one of the guards, said. I knew him, his name was Sal and I knew he had been with Gino many years.

I followed him into the library. "Ryan," Gino said, tossing his hair with his hands. "It's Marcia, go talk to her, try to make her understand our point of view on this." Since I was not sure what our point of view was, I went up to see Marcia. I knocked on her door and heard her sobbing.

There was a soft "Yes?"

I look back to when I entered the room, as the beginning of my being her personal puppy dog. Ever since I had rescued her, and watched her grow up to be a young lady, I knew there was nothing she would ask me that I would not do for her. She was family. My family, and just as Gino had told me years before, family always took care of family.

"What's up, princess?" I said.

She ran up to me and put her arms around me.

"Oh, Ryan, Papa is so unfair. He insists that he must send bodyguards and drive me to my Prom. Any boy who ever tried to take me out was never good enough or was chased away by the guards if they even tried to hold my hand, let alone kiss me. Now no one will even take me to the Prom. It's just not fair."

"Let me talk to Gino, and see what I can do," I said.

Gino and I had a long talk. That meant he talked and I listened. After he finished, I asked him one question.

"Gino, if you are so afraid of Marcia being kidnapped again, why did you send her to a regular school? You certainly could afford a tutor and kept her in this castle."

We both knew that since the ransom, there was an unreasonable fear in Gino that it would happen again. I had made sure there was a clear message left on the dead bodies of the kidnappers, to never bother the family again. To make that cleat to anyone, in the weeks that followed, several other bodies were found with pieces missing.

Gino said, "Because I wanted her to have a normal life."

"Going to the Prom is a normal one-time thing, Gino," I said. "Every girl wants to go to hers, and without that, she will not have a normal life. Now what will you do to allow it, so she can attend?"

I knew that I was in deep trouble, when I saw the smile on Gino's face.

"Go ask Marcia to join us."

I went back up, knocked, then entered.

"I spoke with your dad, and he has something to say to you. Would you join us downstairs?"

As we entered, Gino said, "Please sit down, both of you."

Gino then went on how terrible it had been not to have been able to protect Marcia when she had been kidnapped. Actually three guards had been shot, the car bombed and gassed, and three of the kidnappers had been killed in the attack.

"I only wanted to protect you and yet let you have a normal life. Yes, you can go to the Prom."

Marcia got up and ran up to him, tears running from her eyes, she kissed him.

"Ryan will be your driver, date, and bodyguard."

She looked at me. I stared at her then saw the smirk again on Gino's face.

"Oh, Papa, thank you. Will he take me to dinner and can we stay out all night?"

"Of course, sweetheart. After all, I'm sure your date wants to make you happy."

I had my mouth open.

Marcia came up to me, closed my mouth, kissed me, and said, "I think you can make me very happy," as she skipped to her room, grinning like a Cheshire cat.

After that night of fighting off a sixteen-year-old attacker for twelve hours, I thought my torture was over. No such luck. Every social event after that, any dinner, family get-together or event saw me with Marcia. Pretty soon the sly winks and casual comments had us as a couple headed for the altar.

How had this happened? Marcia was no help, every time she saw me, or when we were together, she would run up to me with a hugs, some serious kisses and seemed to be attached to me physically. It was becoming a family joke for us to 'get a room'.

I found myself spending more and more time over at Gino's. I even had my own rooms there now, which really helped me to deny Marcia and I were not 'attached'. One day Gino asked me to join him for a walk. Sal and Vince followed us and both tried to hide smirks on their faces.

Gino and I were walking a bit then he stopped and asked me, "Ryan, just what is your intention regarding my daughter? You know she is in love with you, don't you?"

I gulped. A spinning and dizzy feeling came over me and I reached out to hold onto Gino. Sal and Vince were right there to hold me up.

When my head cleared, I said. "Gino, I have never even tried to be anything other than a friend to Marcia. I think of you as a brother, and I think of her as family. I would never, intentionally, do anything to hurt her."

"I know my friend. But, my daughter takes after some of us in the family. She thinks she knows what she wants, and she is used to getting it. It seems she thinks she wants you. So what now?"

I shook my head. If I really was honest with myself, I had to admit there were many dreams that I had involving Marcia. Since that night of the Prom, she had left me no doubts that she considered that we were meant to be together. Gino was now making me make a decision that I knew would affect the rest of my life.

"I have never thought about that, Gino." I said.

Like any man, I left, and started taking assignments as far away as possible.

I spoke with Paulie.

"Gino is really pissed off. You left him with a daughter who has made bringing you back the primary focus of the entire 'Cosa Nostra'. Gino knows you need a little time to think. He thinks it is funny in a way. He has never seen his daughter like this before. Every day she has a meeting with Sal and Vince. She is now giving them orders on how to find you.

She calls me each week to see if I have heard from you. People watch your house. Family interests check for any names you have used for credit cards, passports or a license. I would not want to be on her list. She is worse than her father. I think you would be better off to just marry her and keep her pregnant. If you don't, she will hound you till you do so."

"Man, Paulie, I don't know what to do. Help me. One minute I would do anything for her, another I just wish I had never met her. What should I do?'

He just laughed and said, "We have a few assignments for you. When you get back I have a very interesting one for you. It is an old friend of mine. The pay is out of this world, and one of the people you will eventually meet will give even Marcia a run for her money, so your problems will increase, I fear."

I took the first assignment. It was a solo mission. Some fanatical something or other wanted a new law passed. The Prime Minister had refused and an ultimatum issued. I hated these kinds of hits, if not the father, then kill the daughter. All this because some rich bitch wanted her way. I did the job. It would seem easy compared to a later one I would do to forget about someone else that I had fallen for and wish I had not gotten invoved.

When I returned, Paulie had set me up to find another kidnap victim, or rather, two. It was a mother and daughter. The husband, it seemed, disposed of Sally and Sheila. The grandfather wanted them back. He was willing to use any means at his disposal and money was no object. I had told Paulie that this was not a one-man job, but he insisted I try. I owed a lot to Paulie, and did as he asked.

I tried to tell the man that he was wasting his money. If I ever did find something that I would have to hand it over to the authorities.

Just as before he said, "Keep Looking!"

So guess what? I kept looking.

His daughter and granddaughter had been abducted. From everything that had been found out, the son-in-law had probably arranged the whole thing.

He was a greedy SOB, and did not want to wait for any 'estate' or 'heir' thing. He must have been a little surprised when the grandfather refused to pay the ransom. The greedy bastard died of heart failure. It was felt he either killed off his wife and daughter, or sold them into slavery. When the grandfather demanded proof of life, they were long gone.

That was one of the reasons I kept telling the man that he should let the cops handle it, as they were the professionals. Yeah, right: professional coffee and doughnut eaters. But, after all, I was not a kidnap rescue-er. My only good point was that the man trusted me. He had heard from a friend that when I took a mission, I never gave up. That was a while ago; but, yeah, it stuck with my rep.

I was used to having good people around me, helping me: a team effort. I called the man and asked if we could meet. I knew he lived in Paris, France. I told him I could be at Charles De Gaulle airport, the next day. He laughed and suggested he would have a ride waiting for me. He said to look for 'Mr. Smythe' on the sign in the baggage area.

I thought if I met him and told him in person that he was wasting his money, then he might listen. I had agreed to a month for $20,000 plus expenses. So far, he would get back nearly $4,300 from the $30,000 he had wired me. If I had not received the call from my former client, I would never have taken the job, or the man's money. This was going to be hard, costly and more than one man could do.

The body of the son-in-law was found in Spain, near Madrid. That was about twenty days ago. He'd asked my client to have me call him less than one day after he got the ransom demand. Hell, I was willing to return the twenty Gs, if he would just drop me from the mission, and get someone else instead.

That former client was into loaning money, and the doctor he loaned it to was easy to find: just look in the book, or in this case, the internet. He had owed nearly five $ mil. He thought he was untouchable. He was willing to pay, but not right then.

My client took a dim view of any contract that was not adhered to. He, like me, valued a man's word. So he had asked for a 'not so gentle' reminder to be delivered to the doctor. It would say that the doctor 'now' owed six mil. 'Now' meant in forty-eight hours, or the next time something much more personal would happen. As usual, my client left the method to me.

I had all these great, sick ideas I had always wanted to try. Then I remembered a movie I had seen, and another idea was formed.

'Hee, hee, hee! This is going to be fun, ' I thought.

No blood, gore, or cops; but he would get the message! It was simple enough. I bought a prop in town, paid cash, and then stopped at a greeting card shop. I bought two things. I mailed one of the cards to his house via a local document delivery service.

Late that night, I paid a visit to him. He was fast asleep and alone in bed. I went to his wardrobe, got his best suit (a Louis Roth, I think), and laid it out on the bed near him. I took the small gift and the card and put both on his clothes. The next morning he woke up later than usual, on his bed was a single lily and the unsigned card: "My Deepest Sympathy" it read.

Later that day, as he read the mail, he opened the card I had sent.

"Your Loss Will Not Be Forgotten" was followed by a date, forty-eight hours in the future. He made arrangements, and paid the six mil the next day. My client laughed so much that he was holding his ribs as he handed me a briefcase. I had been on this for less than a week; four days, in fact. The case was all leather, and was really nice.

I rose to shake his hand and leave. We had done business before, and I was not going to charge him for this.

"Don't you care what's in it, Ryan?"

I replied, "Nah, you have always been fair with me. This case is enough for me."

"You keep this up and you'll have to get a real job," he said. "Look inside the case."

Inside was two hundred fifty thousand dollars, in neat packages.

He said, "You made me some extra money with this one, plus he paid the regular interest. I figured you could use a vacation. Thanks."

You see the reason why I could not refuse to try to find the man's daughter? Paulie had always treated me fairly; so when he had called, how could I refuse his request? So with some regret at failing; I left for France, to let the man down gently. He should save his money. I did not find out until later, that the ransom of two hundred fifty million would not have been more than a few weeks worth of interest on his capital!

When I got to the airport, not one but four men and a very attractive woman were holding up signs with 'Mr. Smythe' on it.

The girl, woman, female, whatever; greeted me in the traditional European way. She kissed both cheeks, then gave me a light kiss on the lips.

"Why, Uncle Ryan, you do care for me!" she said as she brushed up against my groin. She started towards the door, saying, "Walk this way, please."

As she swayed her hips, I said, "If I walked that way, I'd be arrested."

The four men had not even smiled, but the girl was having fun. When we got to the exit, three black Mercedes 600 limos were waiting. One of the men opened the back door of the centre car. The girl got in, and let her short dress ride up near her waist. I, of course, followed. One man got in the front seat. The others went to the front and back cars.

The girl said, "I'm Max. I help the Baron when travel is required."

Then she motioned for the cars to proceed. If she'd been older, had lowered her skirt, and had not been so damn cute; I might not have kept staring at her with my mouth wide open. I did notice that the cars were armoured. By the feel of mine, it had been done by someone who knew what a tank mine could do. This car was ready to go into combat. The roof had flip down armour for over the windows and a shield that separated the front from the back cage.

If I had to guess, we would be protected for several hours from anything but a tank, a 105mm cannon or an A-10 with mini-guns; these were serious transports. Man, would I like to have one of these!

Max said, "Boys and their toys, can't you think about anything else to play with, except cars?"

Again I just stared at her with my mouth open. She had to be eighteen, but maybe not. She raised the seat area between us. Inside was a small arsenal.

"These are in case our trip should be interrupted; now, or later. Each car is identical."

"We will be using identical cars while we search for Sheila and Sally." She showed me the flat screens overhead. "Satellite, aerial and drone monitors will be available in the other cars, as well. There are eight more cars like this, and four large vans will join us in Spain. You will have room for up to ten more of your men, plus the twenty I already have waiting. Do you have any questions before we meet The Baron?" she asked, as she handed me a large case.

I just could not help myself. I kept staring at her with my mouth open.

She snapped her fingers under my nose and said, "Max to Ryan! Max to Ryan! Come in please!"

"Uhh!" was all I could say.

I had come to have this poor old man cancel the mission. I was going to tell him it was too big for any one man. So he gets a woman (no, a girl) with twenty men, ten million in armoured vehicles, and God know what kind of firepower ... yeah, my mouth was still open.

I guess it was a day for surprises. When I opened the case, I found two graphite Sig-Sauer .40 calibre semi-auto pistols, with silencers; two deadly sharp knives; and a hard case full of pre-filled syringes. The bottom was filled with cash and gold coins, plus a Swiss bank account statement showed a balance of thirty million. I looked at Max.

"Don't look at me! If you need more, talk to The Baron. I'm not giving you any of mine ... not of money, that is," she said, and then smiled.

She lowered another panel in the car. Twenty-four throwaway cellphones and a dozen pre-loaded debit cards were there.

"For emergency use," she continued. "I have a small team gathering intel for us in Madrid (Small? Sure! She had twenty operatives there!). We will be based in Costa del Sol, where the trail will begin. Can your people meet us there?" she asked.

She handed me a number, saying, "Have them call, and someone will met them when they arrive. We leave within forty-eight hours. A helicopter will take us from the chateau in two hours. The vehicles are already in Spain, so are other supplies and assets."

Whoever she was, she was good, damned good. I just shook my head in agreement. What else could I do? I wondered if she was ... Oh, well ... Nothing. She was something else!

I had said today was full of surprises. When the Chateau came into view; it was, like, still ten miles away! It was sitting on top of a mountain. Man, just like the song: one could see for miles and miles. I wonder who gets to cut the grass? Max, again, is a great source of information. "There are six villages around the estate. In all, over a thousand people maintain the estate, and keep guard on the roads and waterways.

"Satellites keep watch 24/7 also. In over nine hundred years, the castle has never been breached. Even during the war, the Germans could not seize it. The Panzers could not reach the walls, as pits and mines were laid out over twenty kilometers away. Even now, our approach is being monitored. If the code phase is not given, soon; even these cars will be destroyed from above. Yes, Ryan, we do have protection here. Our Russian friends have provided us with a number of surprises. Six 'Hinds' will take us to Spain, and stay to guard us on our mission."

Meeting The Baron was another surprise. He was dying; of cancer, he said.

He introduced a team of lawyers, and then said, "My daughter and granddaughter are my heirs. I will be dead, soon; but I have left instructions in my will, as well as with these men, that you and Max should have everything you need to find them. If, in eight years they cannot be found, or are pronounced dead; my estate goes to you and Max. It is my hope that even then, you will extract justice for them. The estate is worth more than eleven billion. I would give it all, to have them back! Find them! Please, find them!"

Max bent down and kissed him, tears ran down her cheeks.

"We will find them, grandfather," she said, as she held his hand.

Now I knew why she was so into this.

"Ryan, I have asked for your help, because Paulie said you were a man who could be trusted. I am asking you to keep my granddaughter safe, as well as find my daughter and other granddaughter. Max is an orphan. Her mother and father were killed and she will inherit this Chateau. If nothing else, should you find my daughter or granddaughter, you will receive one billion. Keep her safe, Ryan."

We heard the Hinds landing outside. One of the lawyers handed each of us a note.

"These two accounts should keep you going. Call the number, give the passwords, and more will be added as you need it. Destroy these papers after memorizing the data."

The old man was asleep. We left for the gunships. Max was still crying. I put an arm around her shoulders, and walked out to the Hinds with her.

"If anything happens to me, keep looking for them," she said as she continued to cry.

Man, I was tearing up too, now. I'd hate to be them when we find whoever took the girls! Death will only be something they could wish for!

As the helicopters flew towards Spain, I called and texted messages to some of the people I wanted. I said if they needed money now, to e-mail me their bank account data, or tell me which Western Union office to contact. If not, I would have cash for them in Spain. I gave them the number to call for pick up. I then memorized the info the lawyer had given me. Tearing the note into very small pieces, I slipped them out the chopper's window, across one hundred and fifty kilometers of French countryside.

No one seemed to be concerned about these armed gunships flying about. We made quite a sight: six Hinds, flying in formation. These were the huge new war birds, man. I would find out, later, that these had several special features: Apache 'map of the earth' guidance, with chain guns and sidewinder missiles.

I would take Max anywhere. I wondered if she knew how to dance, too?

We landed in Spain. The nice thing about helicopters is that they do not need an airport. While I was not expecting another chateau; where we landed, was ... well, it was more like an old and rundown farm. There was quite a bit of land, though, and eight to ten large barns scattered around. There was an old house, too, and what seemed to be an Old West bunkhouse for ranch hands.

Max saw my look, shook her head and said, "Everything we need is underground."

The doors on several of the larger barns opened up, and tow slugs came out. They started to take the Hinds away. We walked into one bunkhouse. It had seen better days. Behind a panel in one of the bedrooms was a lift. We entered, and some of the guards followed.

The guards got off at Level One, and we went down to Level Two. When we exited, there were long hallways to the right, left and centre. We went straight ahead. After passing several doors, we approached the end of the hall.

A door was on the right. Key code is 2316565SS2 then entered another code. "Say the code as you enter it in, the computer will recognize your voice for other things later on."

The room was just a room. There was subdued lighting that was blue, now, but had been green when we entered.

"Green means someone with the correct code is entering the room, blue is the normal colour. If it had been red, then all hell would have broken out, including some surprises in the hall. This complex was a military project house, and it was declared 'excess'. We bought it, and had it upgraded. It is functional, and serves as our base for Western Europe.

We have another that the Russians have provided in the Urals.)Like Kapustin Yar, but more modern) There we have only two of several Levels but a dozen more are in use by the Russians. They maintain several fleets of aircraft, and 18,000 Spetnaz personnel are there, too. It is very well protected. Should we need to go there, our areas are Level Three and Four. You will need to repeat the process to activate your codes. When we go to our room, it is on Level three in both places. Your access code is your passport code plus the current month, for example 011 for November. Guest access is the day and month, 0703 for today for example, will only allow access to the upper barns and supplies." Kapustin Yar is a Russian rocket launch and development site in Astrakhan Oblast, between Volgograd and Astrakhan. Known today as Znamensk it was established in the Soviet Union era on 13 May 1946 and in the beginning used technology, material and scientific support from defeated Germany. Numerous launches of new test rockets for the Russian military were carried out at the site, as well as satellite launches.

"The downtown Madrid Centre proper is very small. It is located within the Old City but allows for the agents we use to communicate in person. It is much more secure for such things than a public place. When your people get here we can begin the hunt, for it will truly be a hunt. Do you have any questions?"

"Yes, How old are you? Do you have a significant other? Would you like to go to dinner with me?"

"Men," she said, but with a smile. "You're all the same. We entertain you, and then you must have food. We will eat at 1900 hours. A chef here makes Sea Bass for almost every evening meal. There are several hundred people at this location, though not all of them are a part of this Mission. My grandfather has several, shall we say, 'special operations' underway.

"When Sally and Sheila were taken, he knew only one person could be responsible. That's why Uncle Rob killed himself; he knew Grandfather would make him wish for death. Why Uncle Rob did what he did, no one really knows. Money should never have been an issue. Grandfather would have given him anything he needed. Something or someone had to have put him up to do it.

"Grandfather was from an Old Russian family. Even before the fall of the Tsars, the Tsar's family envied our lands and wealth. When Stalin came into power, Grandfather saw in him a way for gaining greater power. Grandfather had captured several high-ranking German Officers at the end of the war in Bulgaria and Hungary. They agreed to an exchange of their release for vast amounts of loot, allowing them to escape. My grandfather asked Stalin, and the deal was made. Stalin never trusted people, especially Germans. When the treasure was located, Grandfather notified Stalin, and began to have it packed up to be sent to Moscow. The Germans met with sniper bullets.

"Stalin's orders were to see what Grandfather would do with this treasure. When Grandfather instructed the troops to take it to Stalin, with a listing of all that was being sent, a private came up to him and said, "Premier Stalin wishes you to keep this treasure safe, until the time is right to rebuild Rodina*. There are forces in Moscow that would take this, and install themselves as the new rulers. The Premier says that they shall be taken care of. He says that you are a true friend, and a trusted comrade."

* Rodina = Russia, Motherland, etc.

Max continued, "Stalin was a man who trusted very few, perhaps no one even. With Grandfather's willingness to limit his ambition to helping create the USSR, in Stalin he found support for such plans. Those plans were to be funded by Nazi loot. Gold, gems, and rare artwork, looted from all over Europe. That was the last time that part of the treasure has been seen. In today's market, if those things could be sold, the gold bars mostly, are worth seventy to eighty billion alone. The gems, coins, artwork and museum pieces are worth many times that. The greater value of the treasure, by far, is far above that in stocks, those are now worth $ Trillions. So, you can see why some may still look to seize this treasure.

"After the Cold War ended, Grandfather started to get his affairs in order. He knew a sickness had invaded his body, and decided that my adopted mother and my adopted sister would inherit his estate."

"When Uncle Rob married my Aunt, Grandfather made new wills and left the lands and chateau only to me. There must be something about that place that caused Uncle Rob to go crazy. The government tried to seize it, buy it, and even threatened war crimes against Grandfather. When Russia awarded him medals and proclaimed him a 'Defender of the Motherland', no one dared accuse him of being a Nazi."

"How much land is there, Max?" I asked.

She thought for a moment, then said, "I really don't know. There are maps, and Grandfather said something about a letter the lawyers would give me upon his death. Anyway, all that is important is that we find Sally and Sheila."

I now had a better idea of how I had been chosen. Before I was 'John Smith', I had been captured in Afghanistan. A Russian officer came into my cell, if you call a pigsty a cell, and asked me to follow him. Now since my capture, no one had ever asked me to do anything; let alone in clear, understandable English. I followed him into a hut.

"I am sorry for your harsh treatment. If you give me your word not to try to escape or to contact anyone, you will be free to remain in the village as my guest. We are not at war here with your country, and we will return to Russia soon. You will be free to join me there or to return to your old masters."

My first contact with a Russian not only was a pleasant surprise, but in the four months before the recall we learned much about each other.

It was strange. I was not a war prisoner, and had no duty to escape. I was not in uniform, nor was I really 'military', yet this Russian treated me with great respect. He had trusted me, and I had given him my word. It was all either of us needed. I was later to learn that Dimitri was related to the Baron, and had told him of the trust we shared in Afghanistan.

"Max, why are you doing all this?"

She looked at me with those puppy dog eyes and said, "I love my grandfather! I would go to the ends of the earth to do as he commands. He is my Master. I will always do as my Master commands."

She then asked me, "Why do you do this, is it just for the money?"

Now just how smart is she? Perhaps I should start calling her Dr. Max.

I thought for a few moments and said, "I really don't know. A client of mine asked me to help your grandfather. I trust this person, and started looking for Sally and Sheila. It was a bigger task than one man, or girl could accomplish. I returned to give up the assignment, and to return the money he had given me."

"My grandfather is not a man who would very easily entrust the lives of family to just anyone," Max said. "This is a blood feud, a Vendetta of sorts. You were selected, a long time ago, as a possible addition to our little endeavor."

"Why do you think you received the briefcase on your last assignment? Grandfather wanted you to choose between robbing him blind looking for his missing daughter, or having honour enough to look him in the eye and admit it was beyond the ability for one person to accomplish, alone."

Now I really was confused. This snip of a girl was calling her grandfather Master, yet she spoke like a Royal Princess. Things were not right.

"Who wants to harm your grandfather, or take his lands, and why?"

She made an 'Hrczh' sound.

"It has been going on a very long time ... centuries, perhaps. Several families have been warring with each other since the Swedes invaded our lands. Now, since the war, people in France and Germany want what they think is treasure taken by the Nazis. They think that it is in the Chateau or buried beneath the land."

"Why do you call your grandfather 'Master'? You are young, very beautiful, and seem to be smart beyond your years?"

She blushed, "Daddy was my Master. He collared me when I was four. He said no one could have me, and claimed me as his own to protect me. When he died, Grandfather became my new Master, just as you will when Grandfather dies. I am, and always have been, a slave. I am not dumb, stupid or un-educated; but I do not want to make decisions for myself. Men have always cared for me, looked out for me and decided what I was to do, wear, eat, sleep and when to have sex."

"Max, Max?" I sat down. "Max?"

I was at a loss for words.

"My Master has ordered me to look out for you, and to obey you as I would him. He also has instructed me to offer you my collar, now, even while he still lives."

She fell to the ground; spread her legs as she began to remove her clothes. She then handed me a collar as she leaned back and placed her hands behind her.

"If I please you, remove my old collar and offer me yours in its place. I will serve you in any way I can ... in any way. Remember; I am yours, soon, in the will."

As in some dream, I did what she asked. I was a man, and when some beautiful girls wants to be my slave, who am I to argue?

"What should I call you? And have you told me all the truth?"

She never moved as she said, "All I have told you is the truth, but perhaps I not have not told you all of the story. Even what I know is only a small portion of that. You may call me whatever name you wish, Master. We will need to start our search within the places where Masters and Slaves are found, for that is where Sally and Sheila would have first been taken. If Master wishes to punish me, I will try to do better. Being a slave is not new, but no one has ever used me, yet."

"Max. Who is in charge? You or I?"

"When we are performing on the mission, both you and I have a task to do. Everywhere else, I am yours to command. I will always try to make you happy, very happy, Master."

She led me to Level Three, and to our bedroom. She left her clothes and old collar on the floor, as I followed her swaying hips.

"Max, just how old are you, again?"

"I became a slave at four, I was Grandfather's when I was 12 ... or so."

Then she entered the code to our room. Our room, wow, there was only one bed, and she had said 'our room.' That meant, like, mmmm, that this was our room, hers and mine, and she was going to make me happy ... no, very happy. This had to be another test. She was too damn cute to be my slave. Or was she?

"Your bath is ready, Master," as she started to remove my clothes. After I was unclothed, she said, "Walk this way."

"I keep telling you if I walk that way ... Hell, coming dear."

To say I don't remember much is only partially true. I do remember soft hands, and her mouth moving up and down my body. Then her body joining mine in the soft, warm bed. When I awoke, we both had smiles on our faces, and I was nestled between her legs like we were hatched from the same egg.

It must have been a dream because I felt a warm wet mouth and a slurping sound coming from under the cover.

"Max, is that you?"

" ... at.o th.k, so ... k ... of bur ... g.t in?"

She came out from the covers, "Does Master wish his slave to do anything?"

She went: 'wink, wink.'

"Max, we need to talk. You are not really my slave? Are you?"

She smiled, "Master you put on my new collar, I am yours to do with as I ... errr ... as you want."

She slinked out of bed.

"If you want food, there should be some new clothes for us, here. Unless you wish to stay here a while, and I'll try to entertain you."

"Max, Max, how will we ever get anything done now?"

"Master, I think there are a few things you must decide. I'm not doing anything for protection, and unless you decide soon, you may become a daddy. Also, ahh, well ... Oh, never mind".

"What?" I said.

"You were my first man ... so, well ... I may not have done everything correctly."

"Max, you're going to kill me if you do those things when I can remember them. Did you ever tell me how old you are, and the other parts of the story?"

"No," she said, as she sauntered into the bathroom.

We reluctantly did dress and had some food on Level One. We went back to the command centre on Level Two, and I made more calls and e-mails to try to get people here, while Max seemed to be running every part of the operation.

"Max, we need to be alone."

"Right now, Master? Here?"

"Max, I meant so we can talk."

"Oh," she said in a sad voice.

"Max, I have been able to get only four more of my team started on their way here. We need a lot of information, just to get started. Can we set up a meeting and some training for tomorrow?"

"The team in Madrid has some starting points, already. We can have an update when your team arrives. I have a training class set up for this evening, for the initial operation."

Her ideas of a training class, and mine, were going to differ!

The Training Class

My team finally arrived. All four of them were a bit confused when they got to their quarters. The general comment was that the military BOQ had been somewhat nicer.

Max had her people show mine around, and then incorporated the daily workout to include them; saying not to worry, they would make the first few days easy. Little did she know! These four were battle-hardened veterans! Little did I know that they were so out of shape! They were not able to finish the "easy" workout, for several days!

"We have several days of training for us, also," she said as we entered a side room.

Inside were two of the largest men I had ever seen. They stood over seven feet tall, were three-fifty to four hundred pounds in weight, and I didn't see any fat! They were dressed in Middle Eastern garb and carried scimitars, which rested in their hands. Near them were three of the most attractive girls I had ever seen, plus Max. They too were dressed as if from some fable found within the Arabian Nights stories. One was blond, one red haired, and one had long brunette hair. They could have been sisters. They were well proportioned but were costumed in a sedate manner.

When Max introduced them, all removed their outer clothes, and shook their hair out; four young goddesses stood before me.

"We must teach you how to become a believable Master, if we are ever going to find Sally and Sheila. Meet Heather, Chris, and Joy. Each of us will be your slave, and each of us will respond to your instructions differently. I, as I said, have been a slave; but have never been used, or abused. Heather loves being spanked, Joy is in heaven when she is bound, and Chris is an actress and can pretend almost any act you may require of her. We all need to learn those things that will be expected. Amah and Ali will act as our Harem guards. Unlike many who pretend and that this way of life is a part-time game; we must make things appear that this is truly our full time way of life.

"The local clubs here will, or should, respect any strange behavior and your unwillingness to share us with other players. I have made certain that the story will be told that we are actually your real life slaves. We are touring the various scenes to learn and observe, not to play games.

"In two days, you must be ready to take us to one or two places and become accepted. Then we go to France and Amsterdam for show before a Grand Ball in Baden-Baden. By that time, if the serious players accept us, you will be invited to some private parties. What will need to be a subtle message on your part is how I came to be your slave, and what you intend to do with me.

A partial truth may be the best thing, here. You got me from my grandfather. He was dying and I was too much of a burden on him. You had these other slaves, recently purchased, and need to decide on training for us, or to sell us. No one yet has offered anywhere near what you would take for all four, since we are very well matched. I am known here because of my Master, his death and the condition of my new Master The Baron are common knowledge. Also, as I said, stories of my now being your slave are being spread."

"Amah and Ali come from Turkey, the Sultan there is an old family friend and will arrange your visit to Amsterdam in such a way that you will become the envy of the city. This will ensure that you not only are accepted but you also will be hounded to attend the most important parties.

"There are many ways that this scenario could be played. We have to decide how it will best be done. It must appear real. If at any time things appear to be out of control, you must punish one of us, severely. The lives of many people will be at stake and should you make any huge error, one of us will beg forgiveness. You or one of the guards must punish us, this does not mean the spankings and slaps which are quite common, but severe torture, both Ali and Amah know what will need to be done. Remember, they will do this for your cover. One of us would do this for you; but in all likelihood any of us would not survive, and death would be a gentler end. So, do not resort to this unless there is no other way.

"Our best information is that slavery was the end Sally and Sheila met. The 'with whom', 'where', and 'why' are yet unknown for certain. Remember, also, that there are many other reasons why they may have been taken. They were very beautiful, and the reason for Rob's actions may not even be related.

Come, time is short, we have much to learn and you will need to play your part well. We are your slaves, we will wear your collar, but remember, we are new, need training and are owned by a kind and protective master."

"The very first thing you must do is to name us. There are many types of slaves, because we are all very young, not having any skills will not be that unusual. You might be willing to sell us, if asked, it should be a very high price, and to one you must decide if it is agreeable to you."

"Kneel," I said. "Ali bring me collars for these new girls."

I was starting to have some fun in my new role. Four soft, varied coloured leather collars, with silver chains were presented to the girls. As each was accepted, I gave a name.

"Blue girl, Red Girl, Green Girl and Yellow Girl."

They all took their collars and responded, "Yes, Master."

Ali gave me an ever so slight smile as he walked away. I was really having fun with my girls.

After learning some very basic commands in German, French and Arabic the class was over, or so it seemed.

"Shall we have food?" I asked.

One of the huge guards led the way out the door. My girls were behind me, and the other guard was following. As we entered the dining hall, everyone seemed to stop. Maybe the huge guards, maybe the exotic dress or might it have been the four nearly naked teens now kneeling at my feet. I thought the lady asking me what food I wanted, was close to hysterics. She kept looking at me, the girls at my feet and the huge guards. At first I was going to ask what we had, then thought I would be more assertive.

"Fresh fruit. Shrimp, seafood and assorted vegetable platters, soups, salads, and bring enough for ten, as my two large friends look hungry this evening."

Everyone seemed quite pleased that I was acting more like a Master now. We ate like kings, as the food never stopped coming. I still am not sure if that was the reason people kept staring at us, or if it was another reason. Another reason was my girls refused to have anything to eat or drink unless I placed it in their mouth. I mean everything. I had some fleeting thought of what else I could also place in their mouths as Max leaned her head next to me and opened her mouth. Damn, they all were alike, like a dream.

It was early evening, I needed to read up on some books and stories about Master/Slave behavior, have a shower, and hit the sack. I saw my four men chatting with both male and female comrades; Russian I thought when I saw them or German, most were blonde. I waved to them, mouthing 'Tomorrow'.

I said to my harem, "0600 hours back here for breakfast and PT before classes."

I started to leave. Ali walked in front of me as I stopped, Amah walked ahead, the girls followed me and Ali brought up the rear. Amah lead us to a new place, it was on Level 3. As we entered, the place did look like it came out of some fable. It had a divan, several sunken pools and gauze areas around. The guards had left and the girls led me to the divan and six more naked girls came out and started removing my clothes.

"Whoa," I said. "Class is over, for today!"

"Master, we will wash you and prepare your slaves to present to you for this evening, would you wish them all at once to join you one at a time?"

I gulped and could not say anything. I cleared my throat and got out a barely audible word.

"Whatever."

I was like the cat on a hot tin roof, hands, bodies and mouths seemed to rub every part of me, I was dried, oiled and placed on a bed made of soft pillows, four visions quite naked, seemed to float and each kneeling all around me.

"We are yours to command, Master" they all said at once.

"Oh, c'mon, you guys, give me a break?"

"We are not 'guys', Master", Joy said, "and we can all rub any part of you and not break anything ... bend, maybe, but not break!"

Her hands started on her exploration of my body. I just lay back, closed my eyes and felt her every body part imaginable caress my aching body. It seemed like hours that these girls sent me to paradise. I awoke once or twice during the night, looked around and saw it was not a dream, each time a different girl was positioned on me with me partially hidden in some part of her body. That morning, Max was stroking me, with that puppy dog look on her face.

"Can I help Master with something this morning?" as her mouth closed on me.

"Oh, Max, Max! You're really bad. I may never want to leave here!"

I looked around as three other sets of eyes looked at us. Each seemed to move their lips like guppies at the surface. I lay back, closed my eyes and began to enjoy Max's daily treat.

We had our same small procession again that day. Because there were so many variables in a Master/Slave relationship, the appearance of buying and selling slaves was the most important effect we had to have on people. In a way, untrained girls who could bear the impact of any mistakes were a perfect cover for us. By acting as a wealthy trader, no specific action would be required.

What was important was to find Sally and Sheila, alive and bring them back. We really did not know where to look, it was not a question of raiding a camp or storming a compound, we also wanted to know why they were taken. We had handpicked twenty-four well-trained and loyal men. There were a large number of other guards, drivers and pilots as well as a dozen snipers available.

We got ready for our foray into a new world, at least for me. All of a sudden the fun, which seemed to stem from role-playing with these beautiful girls, took on a deadly, serious aspect. When I once again saw Ali and Amah wielding those scimitars I remembered the statement that Max had made, that these men would punish them so harshly, that death might be preferred. This no longer seemed a game.

We added a new car, up until now we had wonderful armoured German cars. Although Ali and Amah each entered one in the lead and rear, bodyguards I did not know entered two others, I and my girls were seated in what appeared to be an elongated Pope mobile, with surround glass panels four or five feet off the ground. When we would arrive, no one would mistake our Grand Entrance for a mistake.

Max had said that things were arranged here at the club and that she would be recognized. She did not bother to tell me what she exactly did. We all arrived, Ali and Amah, front and rear, of my girls and me. I really wondered what was going to happen when they tried to take those swords away or keep Ali and Amah out. Then I saw six of the bodyguards, suits, body armour and guns trailing our little group. As we got to the entrance, three men approached.

'Oh, no, ' I thought, 'this is not going to be good.'

One of the men, who introduced himself as Carlos, stuck a diamond-covered pin in my lapel and handed six small pocket badges to the bodyguards.

"Please follow me," he said, as we were all led in, taken to a glassed in office and three young girls asked us what we might like before the shows would start.

I leaned to Max and whispered, "What did you do?"

"You own this club, Master, I bought it for you."

"Do we make money on this, Max?"

I looked through the glass at the nearly full room.

"Oh, some, Master; but the others are more profitable than this one," then she smiled.

I began to better understand why these first excursions were not something to worry about. We could just about do anything and no one would dare be critical, especially with armed guards around.

The first show was soon to begin, Carlos came back and escorted us to a large group of tables in front of the glassed in area. Ali and Amah stood on either side of us, my girls and I seated with the six bodyguards standing against the glass. One held a radio up to his mouth. Above on the catwalks were four snipers, all dressed in black with night scopes on two and low-light versions on two others. These guys were prepared.

I was not prepared for what was now happening. Carlos appeared, and was illuminated by three spotlights.

"Welcome back to Club del Sol. As you no doubt can see, everything is new and we have expanded our facilities. I would like to thank our new owner, Mr. John Smythe, for his generous donations and also make several announcements.

"First, because we have been closed during remodeling, annual membership fees will be extended three months. Membership in our Club will also provide you access to our clubs in France, Monte Carlo and Amsterdam. Entrance fees, food and beverages charges will also be reduced for our members. It has been too long that those who partake of what we offer have not been entertained. Every Friday and Saturday evening there will be live entertainment."

"Each club will sponsor a unique talent. These contests will be rotated from club to club. Tonight is an example. There will be three shows. In imitation to several clubs in America, Club del Sol and its sister clubs will sponsor a free clinic for medical, social and emotional needs of members, their charges and any individual deemed to be in need. This service began today, and will operate from 0800 hours, until necessary, seven days a week. We wish we could do more, but we know that often-normal channels do not know or care that this life style is different, and the need for care often is neglected. The initial funding has been provided, and a percentage of your annual membership fees will be allocated to maintain it in the future.

"With the new ownership and expanded facilities, some additional allowances have been provided for long-term care and housing. I won't go into details, but as was stated by our new owners, nobody will be left behind. I happen to think it applies here. Your donations and contributions to this cause will be appreciated. Now, enjoy your first refreshment, on the house, and let's get the show on the road."

Act one had started. Max and the girls had tears in their eyes. Outside of a few places in America, no one cared for or provided services for those at a club unfortunate enough to be in need.

Carlos came up and said, "Thank you, we needed something like this."

"Carlos," I said, "what you said needs repeating, could you and the other club managers come up with standard rules and criteria for all the facilities? If you or the other managers feel it is the right thing to do and we do not have the room, you will have five million dollars extra to feed, house or care for those who need it. You just do it, the money will be in an account for you to use. You have brought tears to my ladies eyes, and we support you."

Now he walked away in tears. No one had really thought about this in Europe, except my girls. Four hands grasped mine and squeezed, we were all crying for a bit.

The show went on, the first was more like a Las Vegas or Monte Carlo act. The second was a world famous magician with a few young girls who magically lost their costumes and were forced to wear wet underwear most likely seen on a Victoria Secrets runway. There was a break, as the centre of the stage was set up. The club had made special arrangements with an Asian troupe of gymnasts.

Carlos had told us that what was special not only included the difficulty of the acts, but that all were young girls and would be in skin-tight costumes. China, Korea and Japan were requesting we open clubs, there. As an incentive, they would be providing such acts for several months for our clubs.

It was time to mix. My girls and I were taken by Carlos to each table and introduced. Ali, Amah and the bodyguards seemed to follow us everywhere. It was an interesting experience, there were various type pins, and Carlos indicated a few guards in the background wearing badges like my guards had been given. Some of those we met seemed to be decent people; but a few of the Masters, the girls and I took an instant dislike to.

One seemed to be out of control, and started yelling something, then started towards my girls, or me. Two of the bodyguards used a taser on him and he was hauled to the back room. Ali had stopped his swing when the man went down. Later, we found out one of the snipers had shot the man in the chest with a rubber bullet.

There was a celebration of sorts when all the bodyguards received a $5,000 bonus. Joy indicated that this was only a Friday, and Saturday evening would be more of a spectacle. The third act began and most people were again seated. I asked to see Carlos again.

"Carlos, what do you think of the idea of a fund raising fourth show one Saturday night a month; with all the proceeds going to your special programs?"

He thought about it, the agreed.

"Carlos, announce it tonight. We'll see if we get a good response."

"But, But there is no time to book something!"

"Don't worry, we'll have something."

I spoke with my girls, and asked Carlos if the person in charge of the third act might join us. As a girl came over, she said her name was Mei Li. I asked her to sit and told her I had a problem and asked for her help.

As I explained to her what I had done, my girls added some additional thoughts.

Li looked at me, then the girls, and smiled as she said, "Well I really should not do this but there is a very special act some of my girls could perform. Do you think you might be able to supply eight to ten of them with harem costumes? We also need some background and lighting done. I would also like to have some harem girls like your slaves, and those two beautiful, large boys join us? I will have a show for you no one here has ever seen."

I had four heads nodding, called Carlos again and asked him to try to get whatever Li needed for the donation show.

I was informed that we had plenty of harem clothes and a dozen more servants who would welcome the chance to dress up and play harem girls.

The idea of dress up was not more than in a collar, leash, and slippers; but then again, who am I to criticize? Hell, when word got around, more than twenty of the female blonde, blue-eyed German and Russian mercenaries decided to join in.

Since clothes were not needed, we ran out of collars and chains. Using silk scarves and prima cord solved this. If they only knew. On Saturday, cars were not an issue. We now the big armoured 600's plus the huge Pope-Mobile. I wanted to make a splash so we took all the cars, used them for Ali, Amah, the girls and myself and had two-dozen of the Russians rappel down ropes from the six Hind Warbirds hovering above.

Carlos had made a sign, announcing the special show. As we all marched in, this time to Russian folk songs, Li came up and took my arm. Ali and Amah just looked at her as she blew them both a kiss. My girls however were pissed and showed it ... just for a while, though, as Li turned back and blew them kisses too.

"I really have something special tonight. If you like it we can perform variations on it at the other clubs."

"Li, if it is as good as you say it will be, can we also do it at the new clubs in Asia?"

This would be so great an achievement for her to have done; anything she wanted in Asia would be hers. I had already decided she would do all the entertainment for the Asian clubs and at a nice salary. When she looked at me, threw her arms around me and kissed me till Max finally broke it up.

"He is our Master, you know. You cannot wear him out."

We had dropped in so to speak early. The Hinds still flew overhead and Russian music was playing. The harem girls, but not my four, were dancing with the mercs and some of them were acting like Cossacks with their unique dance. As the room was opened, things became more normal, but I noticed the harem girls (both mercs and servants) were being very friendly towards the Russian guards. Those harem girls were all naked, and that may have explained the need for more body heat ... sure, all the time.

Carlos, this time with his speech in both English and Spanish was very motivated in all his announcements. I had given him an account book with ten million. Max had contributed half, and told him to work with Li to open up clubs in Asia. She would do all the entertainment. Carlos should find a manager for here and be in charge of all the clubs. When he told me of his family here and why he could not move, I reminded him he need not move. He was to have access to all the planes for his travel, and to find good managers that were to work for and with him.

Li came up and told me she had called China, and they had given her the power to help Carlos with anything I asked for. I told her that she would also be working for me, on salary, and Carlos would need to rely on her for how best to open the Asian properties. I told her that no political games would be tolerated; and at the first roadblock, I would pull out. She indicated the governments had already agreed that whatever I asked for would be approved.

The same things that happened Friday night were repeated. After the second show we had our walk about. The people tonight were very ... well, different. There was no demented patron, but both my girls and I found many of the people we met, strange. We were uncomfortable with them. The third show seemed shorter this time, but with more young girls.

I remembered the special show Li was doing, and assumed some of the girls had been pulled from here. There was a short break to set up, as Li came for my girls and the two huge guards. Several small girls that had been in the third show had followed Li, and were now sitting around me. I asked them what they wanted to drink.

"Nothing. We will guard you until your people get back."

I smiled and thanked her. I laughed to myself, wondering how a little eight-year-old would protect me.

Carlos again was in the spotlight.

"This is a very special show, we are the first club to present it to you and the first time an all-girl version will be performed. Your donations will be used to support the new clinic and care programs that were mentioned earlier. Now we take you inside a harem compound, for an inside look at how slaves settle a disagreement."

The lights started to come up. Ali and Amah had spotlights showing their now oiled bodies, scimitars gleamed. Naked women and girls danced around them and suddenly stopped. A dozen girls emerged carrying a veiled girl, probably a princess. One of the girls carrying the litter fell, and the princess nearly fell down. She got out and slapped the girl that had fallen. She ordered her whipped and two of the girls ripped off her clothing while another prepared the whip.

In a few moments long knives and spear type pikes were produced, and fighting broke out between the girls. The princess, hands to her veil, ran and hid behind, Ali and Amah glancing from time to time to see the fights. By now glancing strikes had torn away most of the billowing clothing of the girls. Four were in a constant battle with each other; pikes locked and were moving up and down, always locked in place.

Several of the girls started jumping over the locked pikes; long knives slashing at each other, neatly striking but shredding any clothing they wore. Soon they wore nothing, and their jumps became higher and higher, now forcing them to leap over six feet high, the knives now slashed between their open legs, closer and closer to splitting their body in two.

Finally their jumps and knife slashes came towards the princess, she cowered behind Ali and Amah, scimitars drawn, as two girls began to attempt to leap over the giant pair, knives sparking off raised scimitars, again and again the two girls vaulted higher and higher.

On the last attempt one girl was caught in mid-air. While the other sailed over the giant Ali, the lights went dark as a female scream was heard. The knives certainly added to the realism, but the glistening bodies flying through the air, and the over seven foot leap needed to clear Ali had left those who saw it happen, awed. There were only two of the girls who might be able to do this, both were willing to try and both had been cut and injured in trying to perform this leap.

After several rounds of applause and cheers from the audience the last two girls came over to me with Li and my girls following.

"We are sorry it took so long, but your guards are very tall, even for us."

The poor girl was bleeding, exhausted, and near to passing out. Li looked at me and shook her head.

"Well, little one, you will just have to try harder, you will be going to several other clubs where you can practice before the performance back home. I think such a special act deserves a reward. Will you help Li make this a special show for all the clubs?"

Her eyes brightened as looked at Li and nodded her head. I thanked Li, and asked that her government provide everything these girls needed ... including men who were less than seven feet tall. We all laughed.

The important thing was that we survived this first weekend. France would not be as easy. After many hugs and kisses, I had one of the Hinds take us back, and told the rest to enjoy.

Ali and Amah and the girls had never flown in a helicopter, only Max and I had. It was funny to see the statue like looks around us. My girls had to bathe me that night, but I put up with it. We fell asleep, and I only woke up when the servant harem got back, walking very slowly.

I had nothing from which to judge, but it seemed that our first two nights out at the club had been a success. Max later informed me that I had been a horse's ass. The idea that such a club would help people was not very practical. I think she was still mad at me for my treatment of Li. I never thought what I did would make Max jealous, but it did.

That whole week, not only was Max cool to me, but also made it a point to let everyone know she was upset with me. Most of my people, that were going to show up, did. One morning, at breakfast, I told Max of my decision.

"Max, you don't seem to want me around. I have sent my four people back and I am leaving. I will give the Baron back everything remaining of the money. One of the cars will need to drive me back to the chateau. Good bye."

I turned and headed to the waiting car. This whole thing had just been too much, too quickly.

Everything we did were things Max had arranged. We had never talked about things, nor, I guess, would we discuss future actions.

We all know by now how the search for Sally and Sheila turned out. It was a bust. I ended up only meeting Max and the Baron.

I vaguely realized that Max and the Baron were carbon copies of Gino and Marcia, just different sides of the same coin. I had run away from Max the same way as I now would from Marcia.

It was not the age, but the idea of falling in love. I found both women to be everything one could want. The Baron and Gino could be family and both shared my bond for what they had endured. Why then, was I so afraid?

I needed time to think. The car ride would let me formulate what I would tell the Baron. Max may be upset, but this recent cold shoulder had shown me that it was to be her way or the highway. I had chosen the highway.

As we drew nearer to the chateau, I asked the driver to stop in the city so I could rent a car. He said he could drive me anywhere. I handed him an envelope, and asked him to give it to the Baron. Inside was a note explaining what had happened in Spain, the changes I had arranged with Carlos and Li, and the remaining funds. I told him I was resigning, due to personal issues.

The driver dropped me off to get a car and drove off. I made a call to Paulie, thanked him for the opportunity, and told him that it had not worked out. I told him I was taking another assignment, and would contact him in a few months to explain.

I was never a people person. My entire life was limited first to me, then later to a few associates. How Max had wormed her way into my life was, at first, heaven. Later, after the incident with Li, it turned into hell. No amount of money was worth what she was putting me through.

I really needed some time alone. My next assignment would certainly give me that. Hell, I could even pretend that the target was Max; I would then be rid of her memory. Back to real work, I thought.

A flashback about the treasure: With the bombing of Japan, and its ultimate surrender Rutger felt their dream of a thousand year world rule was over, without hope of ever being realized.

He went to what had become their treasure room. It was lined with paintings, sculptures, gems, gold, ivory, and more. Everything man could dream of was there. He went to a metal chest. Its value, he thought, exceeded the vast sum total of everything else in the room. In fact, it contained something that was the most precious thing in the world to some.

He turned several latches, and opened it to hear a series of pressure seals release. Inside were rows of sealed amber and blue vials. There were fifty of each colour, lined in several layers in the chest.

Each vial was then opened, and its contents poured into the open chest, 'till each vial was empty. If mankind were to start again, after this destruction, it would do so not with 'super races', but with ordinary souls.

Rutger's life had shown him that life was for everyone, not just a chosen few. Herr doctor would have to do without. It was later learned that there were many such cases. Some did reach their destination, some were never found.

Time passed. He never regretted his choice.

The treasure that so many sought from the Baron was really a misnomer, for there were many treasures. It was not just the hordes of loot taken from Europe, but the advanced biological, pharmaceutical and technical knowledge we had. However, the real treasure was the power and control the organizations which they founded possessed.

The Odessa treasure, while fabulous, was nothing compared to what lay in Switzerland, Korea, South America, The Vatican and Japan.

What would later be known, was just how family had been set up for the future. The things that had been given to the Pope, were themselves worth the ransom of many Kings; but along with the relics were stocks, bonds and the ownership of billions of Marks worth of German and Japanese corporations. In exchange for Palestine as a new homeland for the refugees, the Allies accepted the new rights to these Axis companies.

The chances for a one thousand year Reich had been renewed, this time under the auspices of an unexpected partner.

So now I was facing my worst nightmare, before Max that is. Marcia was now before me, and my mind was racing to come up with words to say.

"So, is your little bitch so much better than I could have been?"

"Marcia, there was no one else. I just left you because I could not give you what you wanted. You were the little girl I rescued, the daughter of my best friend, the sister I watched grow up. How could I make you my lover or wife? So I left.

I met Max by accident. I had worked for her grandfather. I don't know how, but when I went back to quit, she just took over my life. I ended up leaving her, too.

I still don't know what happened but after a bit, she became jealous and just shut me out. She could be your twin, only just the reverse. Both of you could just wrap me around your little fingers.

There I said it, both of you are everything a man could ask for, and both of you are impossible to be around. So, yes, I ran away."

"Come home. Papa wants to talk with you. Then you and I need to have a serious talk, too."

She took my arm and led me to a waiting limo. Sal was inside and shook his head.

"Just like her father," he said. "Always gets her man."

What is it with these girls; I never get my way around them? Now not only do I have to deal with Max but her again. By the way, she looked beautiful tonight. But I had to deal with Gino also. I must have been asleep. I was resting my head in her lap and she was stroking my face. Damn, damn, damn. Why did she have to be so cute?

When we got home, yes my rooms were still there for me. Sal took me to shower and change. He still had that look on his face that said, 'told you so, ' as he left me. It was nice to be back, but I wished it could have been under better circumstances. I stripped off my clothes and made my way to the shower. Gino sure knew what kind of a shower a man likes. It was large, low lighting, and had like eight heads.

This was something I had really missed. I soaped up and spread several large globs of shampoo on my head. I was rinsing it off with my eyes closed, when I suddenly felt hands. Four beautiful hands rubbing not only soap but also parts of my body that made think this was all a dream. When nipples and breasts began pushing into my back and sides, I had to turn around. Now, I'm not a religious person, but when I turned around, trying to focus my still soapy eyes, I saw two naked angels fondling me.

"Is this Heaven?" I asked to myself.

It was Marcia and Max. My, so-called escape was to be short-lived.

I stopped blinking to clear my eyes. I was having other physical problems popping up. When I saw two heads, one blond the other with black hair I not only knew I was in trouble, but thought what a way to go. I just knew it had to be Max and Marcia. But what was Max doing here. Well I knew what she was doing, but not how and why? Matter of fact why was Marcia also in my shower. I was going to be dead soon anyway.

Marcia purred, "we're alone in the house tonight. Papa went to see the opera. He won't be back from Italy for several days, and nights. In case you did not notice, Max is helping too. Your Asian sluts have been asking about you ever since you left poor Max alone. Max did not know where you went. We decided that we would share you before those teeny bobbers, got their paws on you, not to mention that bimbo Li.

I hope you did not think that Paulie would ever send you on a mission that Papa did not know of and approve. Max and I grew up together, although I forget if she is a year younger or older than me. She, by the way, mentioned that you and her had not consummated any relationship yet. I hope you can correct that situation with both of us this evening. You fool, we both love you but both are spoiled rich kids. We are sorry you have only seen our bad side. Tonight we will show you the rest, of our bodies she added."

I was never cleaner than that night. Max and Marcia caressed, rubbed, and licked every inch of my body. When we got to bed, I had to reciprocate. Oh the things us men have to do to keep our women happy. Yes, our women. By this time I knew I loved both girls. Wait a second, what was that they had said about those cute little performers and Li.

I never planned on this. I hope that babies were not part of the plan, because both girls were certain to have some if this was their time. Now that the deed was done, in a few days I would have to face Gino. Max was little easier, was she not my slave? Hey, if I had a few more, thinking of Li's girls it might make a perfect excuse for a harem. Maybe even, those blond Polish, Russian, and German mercs too. I would have to ask the girls.

When I jokingly asked them in the morning, they mentioned that I was not even able to keep the two of them happy, how could I pleasure those others. An old man like me should take what he is given and be happy with that. I rolled on my back as two warm, lean and now mean bodies climbed on me.

The day I dread finally came. I don't recall ever leaving the room those days, and nights we waited for Gino, but I was like a spooked animal. The girls were seated in the library with me as we waited. They casually were reading books or playing chess.

Gino walked in, Max ran up and gave him a hug and a kiss, followed by Marcia. He asked her. "Well, has he finally made you a wife, or a slave?" He looked at me, "I told you she was in love with you, I did not know back then if Max was too. Poor boy, they are sure to keep you busy. When you rest up some, then go find Sally and Sheila and bring them home."

In what was becoming custom here, I stood there with my mouth open. Max and Marcia both closed my mouth, each taking an arm and saying in unison, "c'mon, lets get a room".

How Gino ever expected me to get any, rest that is, was beyond me. Those two were like the perpetual motion machine. A guy can only do so much. These girls seemed to forget that. What was I thinking when I imagined a harem? The only thing that was said when we left for France was that it had been a very long time that the three of us had such smiles on our face. I was hugging both girls as hard as I could as we left for the airport.

I had several passports with me. I asked the girls which name today, since Marcia had caught me anyway. Max handed me new papers. It seems that Max and Marcia were now to be my nieces, I was Gino's brother and we were traveling on holiday. Well being with them was quite enjoyable.

We had a direct flight into France. When we arrived I had another surprise. My four Amigos that I had sent away met us at the exit. "Thanks for the vacation with pay boss, Max said we may even get a bonus for waiting." They took our bags and a car took us to another part of the airport where several of the Golden Hinds, as I now was calling them, took us to the chateau. When we arrived, several men and one woman greeted me. "I am sorry to have to inform you, but the Baron has died. If you would be so kind as to follow us, there are some papers for you to sign. When you decide you must also let us know if you will apply for French citizenship or marry the Baroness. I looked at Max, she giggled. Marcia stepped in front of her and cradled my arm. I just signed whatever papers they put in front of me. They were all in French and I would try to read them later. One of the men was a lawyer, another, a banker. The woman was an accountant and the other man from some business I now owned. Max now owned several hundreds km of French countryside and the huge Chateau. No one said how much money had been in the estate. From what Max had said, much greater amounts were hidden away.

If I understood Max correctly, the Baron had provided me several other gifts that were outside of France. Max, was now truly my slave. I wondered now about the remark Gino had made about Marcia.

There had been no public funeral. There was, however, a very old tradition, which would be followed. To honour the new Baron or Baroness, a gala event was to be held at the chateau. Since it was summer and with over 3,000 guests, arrangements were made for an event outdoors. The people from all the local villages were invited. Transportation was provided as well as relief for those who continued to guard the various approaches. When the Russians learned of our intention to include activities and a party in Spain, France, Monte Carlo, Amsterdam, Russia as well as Asia it did a lot to further cement the strong bond they had had with the Baron, and now his granddaughter. Miss Li and the French, Chinese, Korean (North and South) and Japanese ambassadors were also invited.

As with most Gala events, there were several un-invited guests. These mostly were the cast off nobility wanting to bed or wed the new, rich, baroness. There were also those who requested various sums of money that the late Baron was said to have owed. They were told to present any claim, with the proper documentation to the law firm. None did, since the Baron never owed anyone. Some un-invited guests tried to enter the Chateau, saying they had been sent to fetch this or that. The guards had all been alerted and made certain such errors were not repeated.

Much food and drink had been provided and it was time to hear a speech from the Baroness. Baroness Maxine Von Hoffenstein was introduced. Max started her greeting to the crowd in French, then German, Russian and English. She called for a few moments of silence for the late Baron, and then called for prayers for the safe return of Sally and Sheila. She then set the crowd into turmoil, calling me on stage; she held my arm and introduced me as her future husband. One could see the crestfallen faces of those who had been looking for a vulnerable, rich consort. I looked at Marcia, she merely nodded her head.

The party had begun to die down. Max had been to each of the village elders to tell them she wanted to speak to them the next day. They asked her when and they would ride a cart or a horse to her. She told them no, she could be there to visit them. That night, after the party I asked Max about when the wedding was to happen. "Oh you silly, that was for effect. Marcia and I both told you we would share. You really don't have to marry me, but if you want to... ?" That night I kept teasing Marcia that she should ask my future wife if she could play with me. I kept getting two jabs with each remark. God, where did I ever get such a lovely pair?

The meeting at each village went pretty much the same way. Nothing much would change except that each village would have a bus, which would go to the town and return each day. A small bank account was made there in each family's name. Medical, dental, food and farming supplies could also be procured as each village needed. During the day, the buses would go from village to village. If work or other things from the town were needed, they would be a part of the monthly review each village should have. Times were changing and the people in the villages would meet those changes at their own pace. Each could mix and match those things that they felt were needed.

In her own way, Max laid out a challenge to each village. If, in ten years, they could grow by 30 %, a building fund would be established in the village. Max did not tell them that the factories in town that she had referred them to apply for work were owned by her and would always find work for them. Over time, each village would gain some special skill or product, which was to spread through trade from village to village. Within a short time, the standard of living and longer life expectancy had stopped the exodus of young people and made village life a place to raise a family. In her own way, Max had extended the influence of the Chateau to several thousand more people. Three towns now considered the Chateau as the center of their life now and the people of the villages' part of them.

It had not cost much money. Just to get the ball rolling had been enough to do something that had been lacking for a long time. The people now had hope. Not only them but also their children saw a life now, and work beyond farming. Over time, machines were brought in. Grass cutting, snow plowing and an expansion of transportation brought everyone closer. Because thing were done when and only if a village wanted, resentment and the futility of the simple life never became an issue.

Max and Marcia now told me that it was time to see my operation in Paris. I was a bit concerned. A lot of time had passed since Sally and Sheila had gone missing. What was happening to them? Where they still alive? Were they being abused? I had a million questions. I now saw the frustration the Baron must have had. Before today, finding them had been a job. It was a portion of a like of power, decadence and luxury the Baron and Max had placed before me. I now thought of finding them as a quest, a holy crusade that would be the most important thing I would ever do. When I told Max and Marcia this, they began to cry and hug me, "We know," I heard.

Something had changed me. Maybe it was the home Gino had given me, or the hope the Baron had imparted, but I now thought of Sally and Sheila as missing family. They talk about the need for a burning desire to succeed. I had never had that for anything other than myself. To see Max and Marcia, loving, caring and helping not just them but also everyone who relied upon them brought me a different outlook on life. Gino too, he had taught me that great wealth brought responsibility, but one still needed to act like a man, not run away.

A new village had sprung up. Our Russian friends had decided some new equipment, troops and security around the Chateau was in order. They had spoken to Max when the Baron had died and wondered what was to happen to the agreements they had arranged with him. Max laughed and looked the FSB General in the eyes and said, "If you can trust a Prussian Baroness, I can trust a Commissar. Nothing will change. Keep sending us men and women like you have been and we will probably expand.

Grandfather was Russian my father was Prussian. I know of what you have been doing to make the lives of those who have suffered a little better. These same funds will continue. Similar efforts are being done by Odessa for German survivors. We should not forget those who gave so much in the past, be they Russian or German. I will still support your efforts for them, Tovarich.

We mounted up, and our little convoy headed for Paris. Above our honour guard of the Golden Hinds flew above. Six new Soviet BMPs provided security until we would reach the outskirts of Paris, where French police provided an escort through Paris traffic. One of the new toys the Russians had provided was satellite tracking. Even in the cars, images of the Chateau, the Clubs in Spain, France, and Amsterdam were shown in real time. We could even monitor much of the Russian complex and places in Turkey, but Max had not said much about them yet.

Soon the convoy stopped. Everything was still. A wall ahead seemed to open up. When it did, our convoy entered. It seemed we had our own, private entrance to the club. Max and Marcia just looked at me and stuck out their tongues, saying, "We hope your little sluts are not here tonight, all we hear is them asking when you will be here. I followed up with Li on opening up the Asian clubs, she wants to thank you, please don't fall in love with her too. Master"

We pulled up to a door and got out of the cars. "Show time," I yelled. I had a big smile on my face.

I began to think what else had been locked away in this so-called treasure.

Suddenly I felt the proverbial 'Light' come on.

I always had a feeling that the kidnapping of the two women could not justify all the expense and security that was in place. Now I knew why. There was not one treasure, there were many treasures. If there were many treasures; then, perhaps, there were many people after them.

Why the Russians were so involved, though, was still a mystery to me. Money could always be a motivator but the effort, the people, and the material that they had put expended was far greater than money alone could justify. It also seemed strange that so much was centered in France. I would have expected that Germany would be the place where Odessa would want to rebuild.

But, how and why could Russian and German, let alone, Japanese and Arab sources come together to renew a Third Reich, let alone include The Vatican?

If you looked at it, however, the Catholic Church was nearly two thousand years old; perhaps a thousand years more was not out of the realm of possibility.

Paris May Be The City Of Lights, but the new club there really is dark and dreary, almost like a dungeon!

"Girls, what is the name of the club?" Max had a simple answer, "The Dungeon! Of course!"

Leave it to a man to expect some French name of mystic, but no, just some obvious name for a slave club.

We entered through the back. I was not very impressed. To say the least, it was not my idea of a club, until I entered the glassed in office.

Down below, were what seemed to be hundreds of people. Some were dressed in costumes, and some were not dressed at all. We moved closer to the windows and there walked up the perfect vision of some horror classic. Her stage name was 'Madam Vlad', and she came from Bulgaria: Transylvania, to be specific.

How the girls got her I'll never know, but she seemed to brighten up the whole place.

It was only after a few moments that I noticed she was wearing a costume that was painted onto her. Silver lame, it looked like paint but may have been just silvery dust, rubbed all over.

"Hello, Dahl-ling," she rasped. Max just looked at me, and shrugged her shoulders. "Welcome to opening night! We should have used the other floor, too. If you think this is a good showing for an opening night, look out front. They are lined up for blocks to get in. Is it too late to ask for a larger salary? Only joking, boss!"

"Just have a seat and relax a bit. Ginny will bring you something to eat and drink. God, I think I'm going to love my new job. Let me tell you all about it. My Papa was a King. He was a very poor King, of a very poor country. My husband ... or rather, my former husband ... convinced him that he had a plan that would make us all very wealthy. His plan seemed very simple, and easy to understand. One of the things that we are rich in, is history. It is said that in the old days, 50,000 men died in a single week of fighting. Those that remained were impaled on stakes lining the road to the castle. That King got his name, 'Vlad The Impaler', from that war. Some say, he was the original Dracula who drank human blood, and ate the flesh of his enemies. Over the years, he is said to have piled the heads, or skull bones, of all he killed into mounds all over our country. This gave me the idea for a dungeon theme for the club."

"Nice," I said. "But what happened to your husband, and why did you agree to open this club?"

"Alex, that was his name, wanted to find some rich investor to open a theme-park near the old castle. He found out that there were many people that wanted to invest. He got greedy, and sold the same rights, over and over again."

"The last time, he sold it to the wrong people. When they found out, Alex never woke up one morning. He had been killed while he slept. That's when I found Gino. He told me how some Russian investors did not take kindly to being made fools of. He sent Marcia to console me. We went on a long cruise and I never looked back."

"I found out where some of the money went that Alex had swindled. I also found thousands of plastic skulls bones and dozens of lifelike bodies in an old warehouse. You might guess where those ended up. I sold them to you as used, and at a reduced price, too. When Marcia told me that you needed a private club, like the one you had in Spain, I thought, why another same old club. Marcia left it all in my hands. The unlimited checking account sort of helped, too. I may have gotten a bit carried away, as I leased several buildings on this block."

"The old warehouse in back was a perfect place for your cars to park, and the Russians made the whole place secure. We have two other places that could be attached to this one; and two more floors, here, for other things."

"Marcia mentioned that bedrooms might occupy one of the floors and a clinic the other. This building, when we get it all done, can have three unique themes. Both sections will, of course, be available only at an extra charge. One will be the Dream Room, where the appearance will change from week to week. It will only be open on Friday and Saturday evenings, the same as The Dungeon. The other room will be The Harem. The theme is obvious. It will be very exclusive, but will be open everyday from 11:30 until midnight. The Harem will be more like a private club. Meals, drinks and meeting rooms will be available. Members will pay $250,000 Euros annually on top of the regular club prices. Marcia said that you wanted a place where people would come, relax and perhaps reveal personal information. Every area can be videotaped. The staff will be hired and trained to ... how do you say ... to be very discrete and accommodating. For opening night we only have The Dungeon completed. It was by chance that everything that was needed, I had or knew where to get."

"This place is unique. We have been running background checks, security checks and reference checks on all who wanted to buy charter memberships. A charter Membership costs $75,000 Euros annually, and the fee will remain the same for five years. There were bidding wars for the 200 that went up for sale. We had nearly 1,000 applications and could have taken more. I thought I was crazy, but these people really are!"

"Did I mention that all the props are stage props? The flesh and bones are plastic, the blood is red wine, and those tied up for torture and whippings are all models. No one was ever meant to be hurt, here."

"Oh, yes, one more thing. What should we do about those lined up wanting to get in? Our opening night capacity is for 600. When the other two rooms are finished, we can hold over 950."

"What do I call you? I can't go around calling you Madam Vlad all the time?"

"Well, you could call me your highness, or Princess Monique, but my friends just call me Sparkle. Do you like my costume?"

This is where both Max and Marcia took me by the arm and whisked me into what looked like a private suite. It sure looked like the set of rooms Gino had given me in his house. They took me on a tour. We saw the bedroom, the huge shower, the kitchen, and the bedroom again and a combination hot tub, sauna and exercise area. Did I mention we saw the bedroom again?"

We sat on the bed ... well, sort of sat, if you can call being attacked by two naked girls 'sitting.' Ginny brought in food, and finger snacks, that looked like real fingers.

"We will be giving away these snacks and the blood wine, free, tonight. It's all catered, because our kitchen is not finished yet. We can't cook anything until we get our permits."

Ginny looked like a naked marble statue. Everything was white and I mean everything. Both girls poked me when I started to drool at Ginny.

"Let's get down to business, shall we", Marcia said. "What do we tell the people in-queue to get in?'

It was a question like this that Max seemed to be just perfect for solving.

"Why don't we use one of the buildings next door for another, more public, club? Those that are outside can apply, and make it whatever they want. It will be a more social club, though, without all the high-costs and nudity we have here."

So it began, our simple quest to find two kidnapped women was turning into more of a business opportunity, than a quest. Just like the villages at the Chateau, Max cared more about what brought joy and happiness to folks, than what it would cost or what the return might be. We never realized just what an impact this had on people. This kind of thing would pay back rich rewards we did not expect, in the future.

Ginny came back, saying we should come downstairs in about forty-five minutes. The girls started taking off our clothes.

They said, "Goody, time for a shower and some relaxation before work."

'Oh the things we men have to put up with for our girl(s), ' I thought.

We christened, the sauna, the shower, the hot tub, and the bed! Ginny came back an hour later with clothes for me. She handed the girls a small bag, as Sparkle came in. She also was handed a bag by Ginny. I now had four naked and very beautiful young, in the case of three of them, girls.

Each drew out a coloured, anodised collar and leash.

"Please collar us, Master," they all said at once.

Then they knelt down. Ginny just shook her head, and left us alone.

"You should have a name, a real ghoulish name for here," Max said.

As I offered each of them the collar, I also gave them names. Max was 'Charity', for the way she tried to help people. Marcia was 'Faith', since she had shown so much in me, even tracking me down until she found me. 'Hope' was the easy name. While on stage she was Madam Vlad, we all had to hope that what she was doing would give us clues to find Sheila and Sally. What was unexpected was that she, too, would submit to being my slave. I began to think these girls ... in the case of Sparkle: woman ... were plotting against me. Maybe Gino was right. Marcia was used to always getting whatever she wanted. Being a Mafia Princess had its good and bad points.

"Time to make our appearance Master", Sparkle said, as I got into my black shorts, cape and walking cane with a large silver Gargoyle.

"What about you three, what are you wearing?"

"Why Master, we are all ready to go as we are! Marcia said. Sparkle added, "I have to wear this costume as the club host."

Right, silver dust makes a mighty fine costume. We took the lift down and inside were my escorts. Six of the blond Russian, Polish, and German women from the Russian Spetnaz were inside the lift, waiting for us. One, called Helga, indicated that Inga, with six more Swedish, Russian, and Danish blondes were waiting at our table. Sniper guards were, as in Spain hiding in the ceiling with an assortment of weapons. If this was not my own private Harem, I didn't know what was.

As the doors opened, spotlights shown down as my guards emerged, followed by my three girls and then myself.

"Welcome to The Dungeon", Sparkle said through a microphone hidden in her collar.

To a round of applause we walked to our table. It was not a regular table, mind you. It was an oval ring, facing the stage, with a dozen more bodyguards behind the ring.

Inga shoved a handheld mike into my hands and whispered those famous words, "Break a leg, Master! Showtime!" Showtime now seemed an over-used phrase. Why was it that no one ever told me what was going to happen. Just meeting Sparkle was enough of a surprise for me. When Inga and all the other girls were around me, I did not know what to do? Well, not really, I knew what to do but, there was no way I would survive. If sheer fatigue did not kill me, Max and Maria, I was certain would.

There was a moment, when the mic was shoved into my hands that I froze. I did not know what to say. As an instinctive response I used my best Dracula accent and said, " I vant to bite, your neck. Just the girls though, I'm not into guys."

Surprisingly that got a huge laugh and a round of applause. "I want to welcome you all to the Dungeon. This is our opening night here. We do have other clubs and will be opening more very soon. Because of your wonderful support and a better than expected response, the Paris club is already being expanded. Several additional themes will be opening within the complex very shortly. Because you are the reason for all this, current members will be offered the opportunity to become members of these new clubs at special rates. Also, my little girls here, decided that a public club should be opened for those who were not able to join one of the private clubs. As Charter members here, guest passes will be made available to you to invite friend once the public club opens."

"When Sparkle, your co-host here told me the interest and support shown here, I made a decision. To many here, this may not seem important, but to others, it may. For the next 12 months, by asking Sparkle, guest passes to the other clubs will allow you to use any of the clubs in other countries, at no extra charge."

"Because this facility is still under construction and all permits have not yet been received, the selections are limited. They are also, free. So enjoy the fingers and blood. I hope to meet you all shortly. Sparkle really is from Transylvania and traces her family back to 'Vlad The Impaler', so don't go into dark places with her, unless ... well, you were warned."

"So on with the shows, and have a bloody good time."

Sparkle took over and started the show. Maria and Max came over to me, pulled me down and kissed me. "Very, very nice boss. Are you sure you have not done this before?" Sparkle came over with frown on her face, she asked, "Do I still have a job boss? You did great." As I hugged all three of them, there was a rush by the other girls around me. "Hey, one said, don't wear him out, we need him tonight."

Everyone was having such a good time. I wondered what Max and Maria were thinking. I began to fixate on what was happening to the kidnapped girls. Somehow, the idea of fun, of good times, of beautiful people just seemed all wrong. I wanted to kill, maim, torture those that had taken what the Baron most prized.

I felt a hand across my shoulder, then two heads resting on my chest. "We know Ryan, we know. There is not a moment that goes by when we don't think about them. About who took them and why. The only reason we can think of is if not for slave, then someone thinks they know about the treasure. Maybe you should know some of the story. I will begin to tell you some of it now, then more as you begin to understand why we must do as we do."

"I won't re-tell stories and rumors, only some facts. During WW II Germany had pretty much conquered Western Europe, Russia, Japan and Germany were poised to begin to rule the World. Stalin had tried, with no success to remove Hitler and rule in his place. The attempt failed and Hitler began the invasion of Russia. What many did not know was that huge trainloads of gold, gems, ivory, jade and tank cars filled with Mercury were being gathered from China, France, Italy, Hungary, Poland and even Russia to pay for the various world governments to join in creating the 1,000 year reign Hitler envisioned. This became only a small part of what was to become Trillions of dollars worth of priceless artifacts, painting, sculpture and fabulous wealth."

"Near the end of the War, plans for a New World Order became Plans how to start over. Several efforts were put in place. One, which the world knows about was Odessa. Another transferred science, technology and advanced weapons and plans to Korea to re-build the 'Wunder Weapons" that were being destroyed in Europe. Genetic research, clone technology and various serums were sent to South America and remote Islands. The Pope, in return for ancient scrolls, relics and many of the things which had seen the Templar's killed were returned to the Catholic Church. They in turn arranged for new lives for many Nazi refugees. Several hundred million dollars also saw to it that these efforts continued."

"What was not made known was that billions went to Allied force Commanders, even rulers of their countries to ease the burden Germany would have had in the event of a defeat. These monies, art, relics etc. were a drop in the bucket compared to what was collected. Much of the advanced research, commercial technology and chemical research went to form new companies in Swiss areas. Stalin wanted the rest found. It took nearly 9 months and a million men but one team finally found those who had protected it for so long. When the German and Russian Commanders met, something happened. Both made a pledge that with such wealth, that no one ruler should have it. It was to be used to help all those who suffered and died in the War. Allied, Axis, Christian or Jew, the things needed would still not require much of this great wealth. Only a dozen Germans still knew where the treasures had been hidden. Of these, 16 were written down and one German and one Russian entrusted with the locations. The other places were never recorded and, by all accounts lost to history. The rest of those who knew where any of the treasure was hidden, died or were killed. That is what some people are after."

Max was continuing the story, when Sparkle came up to take us to a table. Max looked at me, shook her head, kissed my cheek and whispered. "My life too is now in your hands, I know the whole story of the treasure."

Sparkle's arrival was good and bad. Bad, because it interrupted Max's story. Good, in that it gave me some time to try to better understand what was happening. Something was wrong. There was no doubt a fortune was involved. The fact that so little effort was being expended to find Sally and Sheila was not only suspicious, but downright immoral. Unless, Max and Maria were playing some elaborate and expensive game.

We followed Sparkle until we got to another large group. A man and two women rose. Both were very attractive, but that was quite common in this environment. Sparkle introduced Viscount Albert De Moray, his wife Claudette and their daughter Daphne. The Viscount bowed and extended his hand, the women went to their knees. Mr. Smith, we are most pleased to finally meet you. Our summer home is near yours, in fact we might say we are neighbors. We, however, do not own an entire mountain and so much land that one may think yours is another country. I envy you. My family has lived in our chateau for 250 years. We knew the Baron, but rarely saw him recently. We tried several times to visit, but were told, in no uncertain terms, that, perhaps that was not a good idea. Since I speak Russian, I also understood any overt attempts to proceed would be met with extreme prejudice.

When I heard about the club, I think we were your first members. As I mentioned, the Baron and I not only knew each other, but we shared many of the same interests. Daphne, like Max to him, was more family than a slave. We both did what we did to protect them from others. In my case, even a father's rights are not as great or as inviolate as that of a Master to his slave. No one would ignore such a bond, if they did, it would bring down the wrath and fury of every Master and Mistress within 500 km.

Enough though, please accept our invitation, as friend, to visit. We will not keep you this evening. My father was with the Baron during the last days. He also knew Max's family, for that, I leave you to draw your own conclusions. Suffice it to say, any help you should need is yours to command. He clicked his heels, raised an arm up in salute and smiled. Max looked at me, smiled and knelt down too. She took his hand and kissed it. "Thank you Uncle" she said. Maria followed, then Sparkle, and I knew that such a public display had been quite rare.

When we moved on, Maria spoke. "Now you will be accepted as not only a Master, but you will find there are those here with wealth and power who will do everything they can to aide and protect us. I, assume by the look on your face that you have questions? Max has shared only a small portion of the story with you. More, not all will follow. But first we have many people to meet. Some new, some old friends and some whom all of us will treat as the enemy."

Just a note: There is minimal content about what may take place in a BDSM environment. SOL has many authors that will provide you content and a set of dialogues. In general, most BDSM arrangements are by consent, the levels range from mild to fetish. Those that involve children or are not by adult consent are vile and should never be considered. The few portions of this story that deal with clubs follow a show type model and was part of the description of the club in Spain.

I never knew so many people would want to just sit and talk. We must have been the only newbie's in town, since it was near 02.00 the next morning before things were breaking up. I had asked the Viscount and his family, yes even Daphne, not just because she now just wore body paint, but because I was a nice guy. Maybe because she was beautiful too. I wanted to get the lay of the land, so to speak.

When we came to the private office, all three were there. Claudette and Daphne were kneeling. About all they had on was smudges of paint, glitter and nude skin. It was enough to stop me dead in my tracks. Max, never to be possessive, slapped me on the shoulder, she could not reach higher, and said "down boy."

"Ladies, if your Master allows, would you care to follow me to the showers and get something a bit more for display in front of horny old men?" She then danced around me, blowing kisses followed by all the girls. After starring at the line of naked flesh going off, I turned to the Viscount and said "This is perhaps earlier than you expected but I need to know more, and I feel I can learn from what you may say."

One of my blonde ladies in waiting started a chain of servants carrying in food and drink. They were veiled, wore harem clothes, if you could call an open vest and see through bloomers clothes. They then knelt around us as the rest of the girls returned. How anyone could call what they wore public clothes was beyond me. A gold chain, soft slippers, a four foot golden leash attached to a gold collar and a ribbon in their hair is all they wore. As they knelt down about us, both the Viscount and I had our mouths hanging open.

"Masters, Daphne's super sexy voice sounded, we may need help showering later, things still need to be rubbed clean." Gulps were heard.

We talked, just talked. Max said something to a guard, he nodded and she came over to me. "Since it has been a hard day Master, perhaps your guests would like to come with us to the chateau. The guards will bring their car and ours back. I have the helicopters standing by to land on the pads on this roof and take us back. I am sure we can find room for everyone to spend the night, or morning or whatever.

Miss minx strikes again, I almost said no until I looked into those pools of light Daphne called eyes, then at Max. Not only was I confused, but really was hazy when both Daphne and her mom took me by the arms and helped me up. "Oh how nice, we get to visit again, I'm sure we will all have a good time and many things to do."

Now, never in my dreams did I think I was in-charge. I thought Max or Maria called the shots. How was it then, these two, whom I had just met, were now taking over. Max, Maria and now all the other girls were leading the Viscount up the stairs. When did we, the so-called Masters, lose control, and the slaves take over. Oh well, if one had to be overthrown, there were worse ways to suffer.

I would later find out, the displays at the club, and the subsequent private sessions at the club and at the chateau were the bait that led to our first fish. While we frolicked in the pool and waited for everyone to join us for breakfast, Jorge, one of the house guards, brought in a message for me. I was an invitation to a party, for me and my guests. We had our fish hooked, now to play him.

There was a slight problem. Just who were my party and guests? Albert, Claudette and Daphne were new, but were the only outsiders associated with us. Us, what a phrase. A few weeks ago Maria and Max were the Enemy. My life had been turned upside down by these two. I tried with all my might just to escape them. Then something happened. I still don't know what it was, or how it happened, but now I could not imagine life without any of these girls. Even my so-called blonde harem now seemed more a part of the family than security guards. I wonder if I still had to pay them. I would have to ask Max, but I thought of several new tasks they could do if they were really my slaves now. Then again, I would not want to change things if they were just there for that night.

Max gave me a little smile when she asked where the new girls would be sleeping. "Did you mean Claudette and Daphne?" I asked. If looks could kill, I would be dead.

Maria came in. "The girls are in the pool relaxing before we all go to the party this evening. Claudette and Daphne are going as "loaners" with us. They are just on loan, so don't go getting any ideas. Albert made us promise to watch you; he wants them both back in the same condition they are in now, lover boy."

"Should we dress like last night?" Maria asked.

"Ahh, Sweetheart, what were y'all wearing last night?"

"Our collars, silly."

In my mind I tried to imagine the impact that 15 beautiful girls just wearing their birthday suits and collars, would have on a party. "Well, OK, as long as you don't feel over-dressed."

"Max, I think we will need a lot more support staff (guards) at the party. Is where we're going very far?"

"Yes and no. If we fly no, if we use the cars, yes. We have enough Hinds when you include the new ones for transport for support and air cover. Unless you intend to invade France, we can have 200 security with us, more if we use the cars or make two trips, any more than that and I'm not going. I had our host this evening checked out. No Interpol record, but his known associates do. If I were a betting girl, I'd say that we have our first real lead."

"See if our Russian friends can get any more assets there for this evening. Tell them it's on me if they can. If not, send our apologies. I'm not going without support."

"Are you sure, you would really pay whatever the costs?"

"Max, I would never risk my girls, on anything, for any price or cost. If we don't feel safe we don't go."

"Whew, when I asked for more support yesterday I was afraid I would be paying the bill. It may be overkill but we will have more security there than the whole population of the town. Serge said he may have to check a few beaches when we leave there."

Now I knew Max could read my mind. The Russians were not only sending men, but the no longer secret base on the estate had been put on alert and 250 Hind warships had been sent ahead. BMPs, artillery, and enough troops to simulate the D-day invasion had been sent out when Max asked for help. We later found out that our friends had been watching over us like mother hens. Moscow itself was watching from 2 remote satellite feeds. French troops were standing by and the local police had been replaced by French Army troops.

The invitation was seen as a trap. A trap to eliminate any competition and to increase the blonde merchandise with my dozen or more slaves. Girls like these, I learned were prime slaves, often bringing one to two million Euros each, more if young.

Lines of naked blonde girls were soon leaving the Chateau, boarding the Hinds, and taking off in the direction of the party. Meanwhile, my girls were sipping champagne. I had to find ways to console them for the trip being cancelled. Max suggested a fruit basket and Maria soon nixed any thought of a party here. Yes, I was certainly in-charge of my harem. I could do anything and everything I wanted; as long as Max or Maria said it was okay. Even Sparkle, Claudette and Daphne started making decisions. Ahh yes, a man in his castle. Right, now I remembered what I hated about this arrangement.

The Hinds over-flew the party, and then took the girls to the beach where their attire was very much appropriate. They brought ice cream back and I tried to lick the dribbles off of their bodies. I was soon informed that the ice cream was in the kitchen and none was dribbling. I tried.

To only repeat what the Russian General said to me, "It was like shooting pigeons in a box." We were invited to another party the next day. This time to the Russian base. Moscow, it seems, had as much interest in protecting it's young girls as we had to find ours. The party had netted more than 190 people. Twenty-three had not made it out alive. Sixteen names and three drop-off locations had been very quickly identified that evening from those captured. People criticize the Russian methods. They say they are too brutal and violate the rights of their captives. All I know is that by that morning, we had names, phone numbers, addresses and seventy foreign buyers of young, blue-eyed blonde girls, and Moscow had ordered those still alive to be sent to them for further questioning.

On our way out, to go back to the chateau, the Russian General shook my hands. I felt the note and thumb-drive he had slipped to me. He escorted us out and the only Russian actions we saw were salutes and stiff backs. When we got back I read the note and attacked the USB drive. It read: 'There are some things that cannot be said. Moscow is very thankful that this exercise has borne fruit. Watch the video, and then use the secure file on it to erase the drive.'

The gist was that some Russians were kidnapping and selling their own. Moscow, the FSB and the KGB before the had tried to end this. The Russian Mafia, rebels in Georgia and Russian Army Officers were behind billions of rubles in slave girls. It had been estimated that 5,000 girls per year had been sold overseas. For ten years nothing seemed to work. Moscow found out why. Their people own were in the pay of the kidnappers. Max and Maria's request for help made the final tip of the scale. Russian actions were swift and complete.

There would be no bill today.

I had heard that as many as 20,000 girls in a dozen countries suffered that fate every year. When you added prostitution, the porn industry and just plain sales of females that happened in many Asian countries, it was a staggering number. The Russians did something for us, totally un-expected. Russia, France, England, Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, The Czech Republic and Italy all decided that we, as civilians, should control the joint activities of a new anti-slavery task force. What they were really doing was saying that whatever we would do would be with their blessing. The Russians would be set loose and heaven help whoever was on the receiving end.

Amsterdam was not a participant. The Dutch it seemed were the largest supplier of blondes in the world. One had to wonder who was protecting this trafficking of slaves.

Our third club was soon to open, perhaps we would find out.

After France we would soon be going to the Netherlands. Club number 3 was getting ready to open, and preparations were being made.

Max, Maria and the Countess (Sparkle), the new hostess for The Dungeon,, as all of them always had seemed to be more than they appeared to be.

As our departure drew closer, Marcia and Max started acting like caged animals. They were not pacing back and forth, but the looks on their faces and the sharp tones in which they spoke, indicated something was wrong. Two days before our departure, Sparkle joined the act. I now had three girls who were winding themselves up so tight that they were all ready to explode.

They all asked me to join them outside, by the pool. When I did, no birthday suits, bikinis, thongs or any usual methods to cripple my mind were to be seen. Instead, they were all dressed as though we were invited to a party at Versailles. I stared. In the sunlight, shining rings, necklaces and tiaras blinded me. I immediately realized how Sparkle had gotten her nickname. I kidded them by asking if both the King and Queen were coming, since they all looked like Royalty. It did not have the joke value I thought it would as they all started crying.

I started to apologize when there were sounds outside that I had never heard before. In the sky overhead a dozen SU-27 fighter jets were swirling around. In the garden, several brigades of red capped guards, in dress uniforms and armed with AK-93 assault rifles made a red carpeted line up. As 6 Super Hinds hovered, what must have been the world's largest helicopter began to land.

"It's Tatiana!" Max said.

They hurried outside and I followed.

When it landed, the engines were not shut down but continued at idle. A dozen men ... all dressed in tailored black suits, mirrored sun glasses, and each carrying what looked like machine pistols ... emerged from the giant craft. Two more men came down followed by a woman, dressed like the Queen of England. She was holding the hands of two young girls; also dressed as though they were Royalty. Four more men followed.

Max, Marcia, and Sparkle were on their knees, not in a curtsy or bow, but lying prostrate at the feet of the three.

"I am Tatiana Romanoff. On my left is the Princess Ramona De Medici, my niece; and on my right is Princess Sophia Maria Costa, my daughter. Let us go inside, my people are getting concerned. You don't want them that way."

I bowed and slowly moved my arm to direct them inside. After she had passed the girls rose and followed them into the house.

"What have you told him?" asked Tatiana.

"Nothing yet, your highness." whispered Sparkle.

"He has met the Baron, and I have told him about the Odessa treasure; but nothing else," Max chimed in.

"My Father was always a lover of drama," she said. "I guess, the past has always been more pleasant for us than the present. Sit," she commanded.

During the next hour or so, another story was told, and with the telling sprang forth more treasures.

Shortly after the turn of the 19th century, 'White Russia' was in upheaval. Most of the nobility was in flight; a few of the Cossacks and Imperial guards were making whatever wealth, gems, and artwork they could more secure in new locations.

When the Tsar and his family were overthrown, some of the Imperial Guard was able to escape with yet one more treasure. Hundreds of the fabulous eggs of Karl Fabergé, and thousands of jeweled Icons were included. They were able to spirit away some Romanoff relatives as well.

No one knew then just what the future of Russia would be. One day, at the end of WW II, a small group of Russian and German military men made a pact. Both had wanted for their regimes to rule the world and both had wealth and the means to see that happen. It was, and had been, but a dream.

There had been few choices open to them, and one was chosen that combined two separate powers. Switzerland had been the birthplace of high finance, while the Vatican and the Catholic Church had ruled most of the world in religious matters for nearly 2,000 years.

This union resulted in new goals. Closed orders, and secret societies were formed within the Church. They were now a member of this 'New Order'. Billions of Marks funded these efforts. To make certain that the arrangements would endure, the former princesses were made to be wives, mistresses and concubines so that their children could inherit the world.

Now Tatiana, with the death of her father, controlled not only the wealth of 'White Russia' but also much of that which had been that of the Tzars. Several treasures under control of the Odessa had been cared for by the 'Baron', and now Max took his place.

Sally and Sheila had been taken to induce the present owners to 'sell' a multi-national corporation in Germany to some fanatical, Neo-Nazi combine. If the perpetrators had had any idea of what they had gotten into, they would have run away as fast and as far as possible.

Tatiana, it seemed, was somewhat of a legend. Although 'White Russia' was pretty much limited to the Ukraine now, the memory and wishes of many people had made her requests their commands. One other time, people had tried to kidnap and bargain with her. Not much had ever been heard about what had happened to them, but Monique (Sparkle) told me that in Moldavia, rumors still persist about the bodies of, men, women, and children, found impaled on long posts.

The guards Tatiana had brought began to close all the doors and draw most of the drapes in the room. They then left. Tatiana motioned for me to stand and approach her. I did so, not knowing what she might want of me.

Tatiana took up a box that had been placed at her seat by one of the guards. She clapped her hands and there were suddenly five naked girls at our feet, all had their hands behind their back and legs wide open in the posture of a slave.

Max, Marcia, Monique, Ramona, and Sophia all looked at the floor. Tatiana's orders were simple.

"Collar your slaves!" was all she said.

After five collars were received, I asked, "Why?"

Max said, "May I speak, Master?'

"Of course," I said.

"Her highness need never explain why she has something done. It is done, and none may question her." She giggled a little, then said, "We think it is because everyone is afraid of her. You and Gino may be the exceptions."

For the first time I heard a little laugh come from Tatiana.

"It is for their protection, and for yours. Should the guards see you even touch them otherwise, you would be dead. Now that they belong to you, those same guards will remove any who might do you harm. Also, even your Russian guards fear my Cossacks. They are not with me for money, but for honour ... they would all die for me."

I later learned that Ramona was the Daughter of the current Catholic Pope, in Rome and Sophia's Father was head of the Greek Orthodox Church.

As usual, the Russian planes landed and were serviced by the French, as though they were their own. The helicopters and ground troops returned to the 'Secret' base. All returned to normal except that the castle guard was now three hundred or so Cossacks.

We were scheduled to leave the next day, and after dinner, all six of us retired to 'our' bed.

One of the Cossack guards that came with Tatiana motioned me aside before dinner. He told me that the taking of Sally and Sheila had no bearing on anything. Honour and Tatiana's pride, though, would be irreparably damaged if left without the proper response. Amsterdam would see the perpetrators trying to bargain with me. He told me that action would be taken in three other countries, as soon as Sally and Sheila had been returned. He also told me to accept that what would be done was the only way things could be resolved. He gave a wicked smile, and left.

I noticed, then, that he wore an artificial hand.

Amsterdam was to be the turning point of this hunt. I knew I was not ready. I knew that as much as the girls would try to help me, that at some point when I turned to them, I would be seen as a fraud. Then I had an idea, but would it work? I would ask for advice.

It was fairly easy to find the one-armed Cossack. It was another to approach him. I wondered why. I asked one of the guards if I might have a moment with the old man. The guard laughed. He told me he would try, but to understand, that it would be difficult.

Nearly two hours later, the guard came to me, "Come, follow me. The Prince will see you for a moment."

Dressed in his white uniform, medals overflowing his chest and gold brocade, the man seemed much younger than he had a while before. I asked if he could give me advice. Another laugh. I tried to explain what and why I wanted to do something. I was greeted by a blank stare. I repeated myself in very bad Polish, then Russian.

The man looked at me and merely said, "I do understand you, Dear Man. I speak eight languages. I was just thinking as to why I had not thought of this myself? Yes, of course she will do it. Tatiana!" he called out.

The Princess entered and stood next to him.

"Our young friend has a good idea. Prepare and submit yourself."

The girls were summoned. As they appeared, now naked except for their collars, Princess Tatiana was removing her clothes. She knelt before me as an ivory box was presented to me by Max. Monique removed a diamond studded collar, and presented it to me. Now all six were in-posture before me.

I heard, "Collar your slave. All the guards had retreated, only the one-armed man, myself and the six females were in the room.

Tatiana looked up at me, a small smile on her face, then cast her eyes down. I could barely speak! No, whatever I said, I did not think any might even hear. Here was a woman who ruled thousands! She had to be much older than her body now showed.

"Yes, Master, collar your slave," she said.

The man next to me said that his name was Josef. The Baron had been his father. Tatiana was his sister and my idea had made him change his plan.

"Brilliant," he said. "Ahh, you might want to let the Princess put something on. Appearances you know, Old Man. I'll busy the guards a bit."

The opening of the Amsterdam club had gotten me both scared and excited. Scared because I hadn't the faintest idea of what to do. Excited because I hadn't the faintest idea of what I would do. This was one of the reasons why Tatiana had to become the Mistress.

The six were still on their backsides, legs spread wide and all seemed to have grown several inches on top, or was it me.

"Why are you waiting," I asked.

"Master, you have not ordered us to do anything, yet. You know we are very good little slaves, and will do anything you tell us to do."

The minxes, now Royal minxes made me shake my head as I said, "You may get dressed. I may change my mind this evening, however. Now go, you Royal minxes."

I heard a series of giggles and the rustle of clothes in the next room. I went out.

"I see that your little harem has some impact on you."

I looked down, saw what he meant, and turned red.

"Yes, a man must do many difficult things. Very difficult."

Josef told me he and Tatiana had been born in this Castle. Tatiana had married a King, and as her brother, he had become a Prince when the childless man had died. Tatiana was really a Queen, not just a Princess. Now as part of my harem, she was Mistress to five goddesses. I found out that the 'girls' were aged from fifteen to twenty-five ... no age for Tatiana, but she looked closer to fifteen than twenty-five. Damn! This was going to be very 'hard, ' in more ways than one. Another thing I noticed, was a great change in the attitude of the guards. What had been a reluctant acceptance of my presence before, was now a quick and bright reaction to my every request, even anticipation.

We finally did go to sleep that night, or should I say I fell asleep. Nine bodies, naked bodies, do not make for an easy and restful sleeping. I should have said, Nine beautiful, naked 'slaves' and one tired out pretend Master.

One thing I had learned, and it made all the difference, was that money had been the motivator for the kidnap: plain and simple money. But then why the elaborate ruses?

I finally woke up to an empty bed. Indeed, when I walked around, the entire house seemed empty. There was a note on the patio for me.

"Gone with Tatiana to pick up a few things. We all will meet you in Amsterdam for the party ... unless we get some really HOT offers on the way."

The Russians were back in charge. The Cossacks had gone. Six tall Nordic beauties were swishing into the patio with what looked like enough food for an army, a big army.

"Master!" a tall, buxom vision said. "We are to take care of you, 'till the party. So if there is anything we can do for you, anything at all; your wish is our command, MASTER."

Max, this was Max trying to drive me crazy!

"Is it getting warm out here?" I asked.

The big blonde clapped her hands and started pressing ice across my face then neck. She began to twist more and more on my lap. Then she 'accidentally' kept dropping ice. Since she was very dedicated to her task, her hands had to keep groping to find the fallen pieces. She wanted to do a really good job, I could tell.

She opened my thick robe and looked around for things she may have missed. She shook her head, long mane swishing side to side.

"Some melted, Master."

She got to her knees and began to lick everywhere that might be wet ... and I mean everywhere.

"I am really trying to do a good job Master. I may need to do this more, many more times. Mistress will inspect my work. You don't want me to get punished Master, or will you want to punish me too?"

By this time I did not care if the sky was falling, who won the Super Bowl, or if we were being invaded. These girls, no this girl, made me forget everything else. I was panting, I was burning up.

"Oh, my! Master needs to lay, I mean lie down. Ladies, please help me take care of him, in bed, I mean take him to bed! Oh, damn, whatever!"

I discovered how one man could literally be driven insane by these sirens that seemed to just go on and on. Brought to the gates of heaven, only to be left in the cold seemed to be the way things were to be, today. Whether it was a massage, bath, stoking various parts of me, nothing did or was going to happen. The girls were making certain I would appreciate my harem. I did not know where these blondes came from, but I was taking them with me! In fact, I was keeping them! I'd found them, and they were now all mine, mine, mine!

They did go with me to Amsterdam.

"Of course Master, we belong to you," Ingmar said as she had a pout on her face.

We were in a jet. While a dozen Spetnaz stood or sat outside the cabin/suite, these wonderful girls just 'relaxed' me almost to death.

I fell asleep. I was dreaming: they were all licking me, I was naked and being tortured by the sirens.

"We wanted to make sure you were clean master," one said. Then she added, "Time to go."

We had landed an hour ago, but my new girls wanted to make certain I was refreshed. How sweet. No one wore much in the way of clothing.

"All the clothes are at the office, or are on the boat," Dagmar said.

As usual, the Russians were already there. They had arranged for security and transportation; and, unlike number 1 in Spain, and number 2 near Paris, a house had also been procured. I say house, but it was actually a series of houseboats. Twelve large and luxurious houseboats were anchored at a dock near the club. Nearby were warehouses and two open fields.

I had expected to see a line of orange metros, we were in Dutch territory after all. The guards, who were met by more guards took us aboard the usual fleet of Russian Hind Helicopters. At least one could not see any guns or missile pods hanging (There were none; but six Tu-54 Vostok Condor Intruders flew unseen, overhead, for our entire trip. These flyers were loaded for bear.

During the Afghan thing, one had stayed on-station for over twenty-two hours. When it had landed there were more than 1,100 holes in it, yet none had penetrated its armoured shell. The eight engine beasts were slow, but deadly.).

I thought back to something that had been on my mind a long time. No matter where we went or which group were our guards, there had never been any issues: petrol, stores, arms, papers, clearances, who was in-charge, etc. Everything ran like a Swiss watch. Money could not buy this kind of efficiency and co-operation. Someone with an awful lot of power was making sure we'd get the VIP treatment.

Two of the Hinds landed, We saw nearly fifty, black garbed and hooded guards line the dock area. It was clear these were not 'rent-a-cops.' Each carried either a P-90, an MP-5-B or an AK-73.

Four positions each held three .50 HB machine guns mounted on turrets. 'Frogs' were in the water, and many small boats in the channel were stopping any movement into our area.

Between us and the Club, it looked like two or three small armies were just standing by. You have to love the Russians! If one or two will do, six or seven should be even better! I wondered just what else they may have ready. On a signal then chatter to the pilots, we began to descend. POTUS himself did not get into a warm, safe and very secure bunker any faster.

General Vasille Petrov and Mr. Serge Bronyetsky(Clearly a 'minder') introduced themselves.

They informed me that the other ladies had been safely escorted in, earlier(I learned later their escort was about five times bigger than mine, and they had flown in under a diplomatic flag. Damn, they were something else.)

The General was quite proud of the bunker. He said it was a 'Class A site, ' whatever that was, and that the only access there from the club was by underground rail or auto-tunnel or the three armies outside. Inside and within the tunnels were 900 Red Berets and 100 elite troops (read this to mean KGB/FSB controlled assassins.

Yep, the KGB still existed and was still in control. If we had wanted to start WW III, just the troops at our sites might have won.).

Those poor, new girls were so tired out from our exhausting trip, that we all just had to get into bed and rest. Right, there are some bridges up for sale, too. We were awakened by a loud buzzer ... a very annoying buzzer. In my dream, I had just about selected which three of these girls I wanted to live with for the rest of my life.

The door opened and the biggest, tallest, most chisel faced giant I had ever seen, appeared. He was not heavy or fat. Certainly he was lighter than those guys in Spain; but you could see in his over seven foot frame, that as the Borg in Star Trek had said: 'Resistance is futile.'

He was one mean looking man, and I then saw several more outside the door. "Whenever you are ready, we shall take you to the other ladies and to the Club."

No, I thought, POTUS should only wish for this kind of security. Tears filled my eyes as I wondered what was happening to the kidnapped girls. If even a hair on their head had been harmed, those 100 Elite troops could enjoy themselves. Hell, with all this had caused they could do that anyway.

We got up, had fun in the shower and got lightly dressed. I came out of the bedroom to find the girls, naked, asses to the ground, legs wide-spread and each holding not only collars but a leash too.

"Collar your slave, Master", I heard in unison.

Like any man in 'heat', I did as I was told. Capes were around our shoulders as a dozen of the giants took us to the other waiting girls. We were all wearing capes, we both had a dozen giants as escorts, and as Tatiana took my arm we marched to a tram like vehicle.

Each girl lined up in back of us and we were soon entering a lift up to the Club. The door opened into a large, one-way-glass enclosed office (I later learned it was nine inches of titanium coated Armalite VI. In testing, the glass had withstood six .50 calibre armour piercing rounds, one a sabot and one a new chemical round designed to take out a tank.

There were four safe rooms in the Club. Air, food, meds and weapons had all been provided, and snipers were positioned to assist for us to enter any of them. The first shot, normally, was a 'bean bag.' The others were kill (head) shots. A rest/refresh facility was within the main level of the club, for our exclusive use. Yes, it was always monitored, and guards were always outside, whether we were there or not. No suicide bombers allowed in here, folks.

The only rooms that were not visually monitored were the suite areas within the office. Even then audio recorded was everywhere there. Each of us was given a panic button. Once used, no questions would be asked. A special team, in this case twenty-four guards would do what was necessary to extract us. A safe house was to be our destination, and everyone else would be sedated, gassed or killed before interrogated. These boys were serious. It was then they informed me that this protection had been going on for a bit and that when the Cossacks came to town there had been some incidents. Damn, there still were incidents, since both Tatiana and Josef had their own systems. It had been a bit easier when she had been collared but they had to let her have the old device. She flashed a smile at me (They both kept the Cossack one, as well as the Russian one.).

Max clapped her hands, and all the girls skipped into the private suite in the office. I was left alone. I had no one except the giant guards. I wanted my girls back! They were mine, after-all.

Shortly (fifty-five minutes being 'short', for women) the girls returned. I had to sit down. If Greek statues of Goddesses could come to life, I was now looking at them. They wore nothing but short, purple capes. Diamonds, rubies and emeralds glittered on each. Tatiana, Max, Maria, Monique, Sophia, and Ramona had tiaras on their heads.

"What about me?" I asked. The other girls removed my black cape, pulled off my clothes and placed a purple cape over my shoulders and a walking stick in my hands. Ingmar walked up, raised her luscious body against me and whispered in my ear.

"We have a surprise for you."

The Giants had all changed clothes, too. They looked more like Praetorian guards of Rome, now. Twenty-four purple guards, in gold armour pieces and white tunics, lined up fore and aft as we entered another lift to make our entrance.

When the doors opened, a subdued light illuminated our movement.

We heard in English, but repeated in Dutch, French, German, Polish, and Russian the introduction. One of the most popular models in Europe, flanked by what must have been Marie Claire cover girls, stood naked and forming up on centre stage, mike in-hand.

"And now, 'The Cavern of Time'" (Our Club name, I guess) "welcomes our first one hundred members and their 'guests' this evening. As our welcome, there will be no charges or billing for anything you desire. This is a special night. I am pleased and honoured to now introduce our Host and entourage for this Grand Opening. I should warn you to only look, and not touch. The 'Boys' with them have not been fed today and, this is not an act, will brook nothing that might be considered 'hostile' (One could sense that eyes that had been on my girls before, now were scanning the ring of seven foot tall Giants surrounding us.).

"Now, our host, 'The Marquis De Chelan',"(Max had surprised even me, I had been granted a Title in France.) I nodded. "Yvette,"( I later found out she was seventeen. She had been a model over four years, and was the rave of Europe. I could see why.)

"The Marquis' 'girls': Queen Tatiana Romanoff of 'White Russia', Great niece to Tsar Nicholas and Queen Alexandria of All The Russias." I looked at Tatiana, tears filling my eyes, she looked at me and I saw a smile, a loving smile.

"Next: Queen Monique De Gaspre' of Moldova."

"Princess Maria Hapsburg, of Austria."

"Princess Maxine Von Hoffenstein, of Prussia."

"Princess Sophia Suleiman, of Turkey."

"Ms. Ramona De Medici, of Italy."

"And a dozen more of the most beautiful 'slaves' to ever grace a harem."

I had called them 'The Royal Minxes' when Tatiana had been collard. I hadn't known just how Royal they really had been. Although bearing no formal title, Ramona's ancient family had ruled much of Europe for hundreds of years. Her power in the Catholic Church today, was as great as her past ancestors ever exercised.

I could hardly stand let alone walk as Tatiana hooked my arm and slowly took us to the lounges, placed in the classic Roman style, front to back.

There was not a sound, no music, no voices or sounds of clapping, nothing. We were joined by the guards and they by the bevy of models surrounding us once more.

Yvette, said, "Thank you all! Please enjoy the evening. We have some unique things in store for you. I must remind you, these 'Boys' and the guards you will see milling about, are not for show. So please, look but do not touch. Here, they are the law, and they make the rules. We take you back to another time and place, now.'

She clapped her hands and all three stages began the entertainment.

She came up to me and assumed the position of a slave. It was then that I noticed all the models held collars in their hands.

"Collar me, Master," I heard in unison.

A dozen more clicks could be heard.

Yvette was now addressing Tatiana, "Mistress, may we serve you, too?"

Tatiana was an old hand at this, one could tell.

"Well," she said, with a serious face, "I shall try to 'squeeze' you all in, but I am not as demanding as I once was."

The girls started to blush.

I really don't know if people are just stupid, arrogant or think any announcement, does not apply to them. Two of the attending models had been 'detained' by one of the new members. They tried to return to the table. As the man raised his hand to slap or strike one, two beanbag shots hit him in the face and top of the head. They carried him out. We all pretty much knew he was dead. Why people don't seem to listen, OH Well.

The shows in the three rings mimicked Rome. An orgy scene, dancing girls playing as water nymphs, and a gladiator epic centre stage, captivated the audiences. When it ended, food, drink and hot towels were brought out by more naked girls.

This time a show by young girls who liked to show their bodies. Later, lights came up on centre stage and even younger girls descended down silken ropes, head first. All they wore were collars and body paint. They all looked like snakes. As they reached near the floor they raised their heads up and a boy and a girl walked hand in hand, each holding an apple.

Mei had done this 'The Garden Of Eden' act, and had the attention of a panting audience. There would be no touching of these girls either, as a dozen men lined the front of the centre stage. I felt arms around me and a soft kiss. I looked back and saw the smiling face of Mei.

One of the Giants lowered his head and whispered in my ear, "One has requested you visit him. Sally and Sheila appear to be slaves at his feet. By your leave, you will have some 'Special' things, nearby, should you need them, Master." He showed me his collar and said, "We serve you by command of the Princess," which made me wonder.

I told the girls I was going to 'visit' a table. They were to stay near the guards, and that Sally and Sheila may be here. Max, Maria, Monique, Ramona, and Sophia all stood.

"We know," they said.

They extended their hands to Tatiana.

She rose up and said, "Now it will be our turn, I do not think these fools realize who they have insulted, nor what their punishment will be. Come," she said.

She took my arm, the girls following.

"I think Princess Sophia has a surprise for them all."

When we got to the very large table, a man was sitting, a dozen men stood behind him. Two more were on either side of him. We had named one of the Giants, Igor, another Ivan. The giant who had come to my table was called something that I could not pronounce. It was an old Polish name for bear. The three men were behind us but at a look from Tatiana stayed back.

Sally and Sheila were naked, the gag now visible in their mouth. Around their neck, instead of a collar was DET cord and a cap. The seated man now showed a 'deadman' switch in his hand.

"A standoff, Mien Herr", he said.

Max and Maria ran up to Sally and Sheila, threw their arms around them, tears flowing from their eyes. Tatiana called them back.

"I will release them once all of our treasure, and the Castle has been transferred to us. Perhaps, after that, I shall keep them for awhile, they have both shown great promise as slaves," he said, then he laughed again.

Tatiana stepped forward a bit. Max, still sobbing, embraced her.

"Master, we know what must be done. Princess Sophia requests you allow her the honour," Tatiana said to me.

The seated man looked at Sophia, more closely this time, then a flash of recognition could be seen crossing his face.

"Do I see a different look on the face of a dog, now? Do I perhaps resemble my mother, or my father?"

Her mother had been captured then raped by this man. When she laughed at how small he was, he had her cut, then had made her a slave. She had later been killed. The Sultan never again allowed any family to travel alone and funded a massive effort to punish this man. His good friend, the sheik had done the same. Their ancestors went back a long way, these things seemed to follow them.

If fear might have been seen in his eyes, cold sweat and sheer panic swept over his face when Sophia motioned, and fifty or more Turkish guards entered. Led in chains were seven men and what appeared to be their wives, daughters and sons. All were stripped bare.

Princess Sophia clapped her hands, Sally and Sheila went to her, knelt at her feet and bowed. The three men came forward and removed their gags. Then they drew knives and cut the DET cord, and threw it at the seated man. He had furiously been trying to release the switch.

Max and Maria went over to him, spit out the two DET caps and said, "Blow your balls off if you want."

"Thank you, Mistress," the Sally and Sheila pair chorused.

They had been Sophia's slaves and pawns in this game. The torture, abuse and horrors they had suffered would be returned tenfold on the new captives.

He waved his men forward, but none moved. He looked up only to see one of the men holding his arm while the other injected him with something.

Sophia went up to the dazed man and kissed his cheek, while her guards led them all away. Those that he'd thought were his, had been in the service of Sophia. They would extract the maximum revenge.

Centre stage started, and the Dance of the Whirling Dervishes began. Any who saw what was happening would see this exodus as a part of the show as all the captives were led backstage. After all, their own guards had joined in.

"My father has dreamed of this day, and will make certain to give them an appropriate reception," Sophia said grimly.

Bear, as I now called him, bent down and said, "I told you that 'Special' help would be nearby."

I went with the girls, all of them, to Turkey. The Sultan thanked us and said anything we asked for would be freely provided. I asked for something. The girl who I had fallen in lust with, was named Kristina. She was not rich. She was not even more attractive than most of the other girls. But she had violet eyes, and had never been far from me, even in the presence of the Sultan or Sophia. I asked the Sultan to free her, and then asked her if she would go away with me, to discuss (sure, 'discuss') the future. If now or later she chose her own way, money and whatever papers were required, would be provided. She had until the ship arrived at our destination to make her choices.

She surprised me. No sum had been mentioned, but millions would be hers. I asked that the Sultan have Max and Maria to distribute what they thought fair from my funds, and use the rest as they thought fit. I made a special request for Bear.

One of Mei's girls was the object he'd always had his eyes on. He was seven feet tall, and she was barely four. They were both the same age, and she could possibly kick his ass, since she was one of Mei's bodyguards. I wanted them just to have a chance together.

Kristina came to me before it was time to leave. She started to lower herself to the submit position then stopped.

"I am a freewoman. Will you collar your new slave, Master?"

You had to love this girl!

"Well, I'm not sure. On our little upcoming trip you'll need to convince me. I may get more offers on the ship."(Riiiiiight)

We crossed the Black Sea. It was a small clay and straw dwelling, but it was on the water. It was very private, and supplies would be brought in each month, by boat.

I'd left a letter for Max and Maria telling them both I loved them, but I knew that neither of them needed me. They had done everything. I had done nothing. I could not live like some 'kept pet' and did not want to have to choose between them, either.

These last few months had taken my very soul to do. There was nothing left to give. I told them I had asked Kristina to join me, not because I loved her more than them, but I thought we truly needed each other. I wanted Gino and Paulie to know I loved them as the father and brother I never had, and was sorry that I could not say goodbye.

I also told Max and Maria that they had not done anything to cause this. I never knew how to respond to them, and still did not know. This needed to be resolved, alone; or in this case, with Kristina. It was ingrained in me; in my very nature, if you will.

Slaves, a harem, vast wealth, power and the playboy lifestyle that they loved so much, had the opposite effect on me. Life? My life needed to be simple. Kristina may or may not want to share it, but such is life's way, to be at peace.

I read the letters, showed her what I had written, and sent them with the boat crew, to take back. We both had tears in our eyes as she took my hand in hers. We left the ship with our meager supplies.

No one seemed to be happy for me, except me. When Max and Maria, Tatiana, Ramona, Monique and a dozen other girls came back from a night on the town, they were informed that I had left, and that notes had been left for them. Kristina had included some short notes to Max and Maria, as well. I/we had officially started my/our new life.

Now I knew these girls (I included Tatiana as one of them) were smart. They had tracked down and garnered revenge for Sophia, and that had taken more than two years. Maria had found me before. I had asked the Sultan to say something to the girls when they got back. He did.

"Ryan left for many reasons, none of which place blame or fault on you. He knows you could find him, so he asked me to tell you this story. There once was a wild wolf. One day a kindly old man and his daughters found the wolf in a trap, in the forest. The girls decided to take him home, heal his wounds, and love him for the rest of his life. So they put him in a cage, a cage made of gold. Within a short time, he not only did not get better, he died. The girls ran to their father, sobbing. Why had the wolf died?" the Sultan asked.

After no answer came from the girls, he said that he might know the reason, or at least one reason.

"In their thoughts only for themselves, and for what they wanted, they took away from that wolf the only thing he had: his freedom. Without his freedom, he no longer had a reason to live. He saw death as his only escape. It was a costly lesson (for the wolf), and was too late to undo. It was a reason that the girls later learned was very true," the Sultan said, leaving them weeping.

Ryan had learned what he felt was much about the treasures, the Castle, Sally and Sheila and about the rich and powerful forces that had been involved. One thing he never understood was how and why the girls ever came together like they had.

Another thing Ryan did not know, was that Kristina had never been a slave. She had always been free, free to do whatever she wanted. She wanted to be with this man.

It was weeks later that Kristina had decided to tell him some of the things he did not know about, and she went to Ryan.

"There are some things I need to tell you!" Kristina said.

"Master, we also have something you need to hear!"

I looked around, and from the looks on their faces, knew this was as hard for them as he anticipated it would be for him. Now they had found him again. He'd thought the story about the wolf would have torn their hearts out.

Then again, perhaps they had no hearts.

[{Author's Note Perhaps the most relevant thing they told Ryan, was who in the Sultan's family had been killed, and who else wanted revenge. Another, was why were young girls from so many countries tied together?

An old relationship of worldwide families was what had tied all the girls together. In one way or another, they were all related.

Why did this seem like Déjà Vu? Ah, because it was! Damn, would I never 'have a life, ' anymore?

"We are all so sorry!" Max said.

Everyone was there now, even Tatiana.

"What am I supposed to do? You always find me, you ignore my pleas for you to let me be; and now, you don't even listen to my stories! What am I supposed to do with you?"

"But, Master, we did not know if your intentions were honourable or not. We could not leave the princess alone with you, for too long, could we?"

"Princess? What? Who? How?"

Kristina just looked down. Finally she spoke.

"Master, I ... eh, I mean, my father ... ahh, he is a sort of King. I guess that does make me a Princess."

I now knew where the blonde, blue-eyed beauties came from.

"Sooooo, you are a 'sort of' Princess, too? Just 'sort of', eh?"

"Yes, Master. I ... I do not even think about that. I love you!"

"As do the rest of us, Master! I guess you will just need a bigger Harem. There is plenty room in the Castle for the babies, too," Max looked at Maria and smiled.

"Tatiana may need to go first, though, she is pretty old," Maria grinned.

"No such luck. I think we are going to have twins soon; you greedy wenches, you." Kristina was beaming.

I just slapped my palm to my forehead. What was a guy to do?

When we returned, the Sultan just smiled. He held out his arms to Kristina. The girls hovered around her, asking if any names had been selected yet? Tatiana gave a forced frown and pout, then hugged Kristina. That was one thing about these girls, it was like they were one big family.

When we got back to the Castle, Gino and Paulie were there waiting.

"You SOB! How could you run away, again?" Gino said. "You don't think there was only that 'little incident' in Amsterdam, that needed handling, did you?"

Now this was news to me. A pall soon filled the room. The old Cossack, escorted by a very formal honour guard, came into the room. Tatiana and all the girls entered from the open Terrace. The guards closed the doors, and then the Old Man motioned us all to be seated.

"For all of you, here; I thank you on behalf of the Princess Sophia, and the Sultan. You all are now made a part of a very old, and very secret, organization. Some, like Gino and Paulie, have always helped us without really knowing all the details. I am only getting old, old mind you, not dead. Ryan has felt that his job was over, after that incident in Amsterdam. That was only the start! We have many enemies across the world. We also have many friends. These ladies are unique. Anything and everything asked of them, has been done. What they do not have, I am sorry to say, is that 'killer instinct.'"

He looked at each of the girls. They, in-turn, nodded.

He went on, "When one of us is hurt, injured, or attacked; they know what to do. They re-act well. This is not enough! We need to be pro-active! That is: we must make any act against us so costly to the enemy; that they risk being destroyed, should anything be attempted against us."

"Our enemies have always been motivated by money. We, on the other-hand, have dedicated our hearts, our souls and our very lives to continue the work of this organization."

Tatiana was very vocal, and one could see a tear forming in her eyes.

What was this organization they were taking about?

Here was a Mafia Don and Princess, a Russian Princess, a Cossack General, an Arab Sheik (Remote Video today); plus a Turkish, a Swedish, an Italian, a German, and an Hungarian Princess. What organization could possibly span such a global alliance?

"I welcome our new members to 'La Grande Guerre.' Our wealth has never been greater. Our resources are, however, only 'as good as money can buy.' Our families consist of old men, and young, fertile women. Ryan. you have been chosen to help return the members of this organization to be family. Gino, you know the difference between someone who supports you for money, versus one who is family. Our girls must have children. For over one-hundred years we have barely survived the deceit, greed and incompetence of members who were not family," said the Sheik from the Vid screen.

"From the time of the Romans, more than two thousand years ago, a group of wealthy backers formed an organization to right the wrongs done by society. They formed and re-formed many times over the years. Finally, in 1354, large tracts of land and the bequests of large family fortunes, made for a stable foundation from which to grow."

"Membership became an issue of image, and prestige. Then a small group of families took control, and the organization grew quickly. It was not until the 'blood bath' (called 'WW II' by most), that male participation in the organization, became a problem. Like the 'War of Northern Aggression', sixty some years before that; brother often fought brother, father against son. The only difference was, that many countries all over the world were now involved, not just one. That loss of males, coupled with the birth, almost exclusively, of female heirs; has brought about the current situation. It is a situation which we need to rectify."

"Kristina, are you really having a baby?" I asked.

"No, Darling, we are having twins! I have a feeling that you will be very busy with my 'sisters, ' too. You are just lucky that I'm not jealous; at least, not too jealous."

"But ... but how did this happen, how..."

"Well, dear, a mommy and a daddy get together. If the daddy is very nice to the mommy, then in nine months there is a little surprise. Now here is a 'partner list' for your next twenty-six weeks. It would help if we all had twins, from this year, so that next year we can be flexible in our schedule. I think that several new girls will be ready to be included by next year, too. They are a little busy in school, right now, although a few want to 'practice' when they are free in the summer this year."

It would be nice and simple to think that everything had been done in an honest and kindly way, to bring an evil man to justice. But, upon reflection, it just was not so.

There was an old saying that 'money is power and power corrupts', or something like that.

These people were playing with people as though they were just pieces in a game of chess. In all honesty, to an outside observer, Satan was playing against Lucifer: 'winner takes all'.

I listened to what the old Cossack had said. I also saw the look on his face. Something was in his eyes that made me think he was either lying, or not telling the whole truth.

It was not something normal. Why would a lot of rich people ... Princesses, even, a Mafia Don and his daughter, Royals and an assortment of the rich and famous I had not yet met, be involved in all this? The only conclusions were either money and power; or just what he has said, to rid society of the unjust.

Although Max and Maria had really gotten to me, it was Kristina that I wanted to live my life with; damn, that was not true. I loved all these girls, even Tatiana who seemed to have lived a very interesting life. Maybe a harem was not such a bad idea. The idea of merely calling out "Slave, I want you, now!" was a nice dream. The idea that all of them might have children was a bit scary.

'I might get used to that however, ' I thought.

We all went back to the Castle. Several Hind helicopters took us from the airport to a clearing in the back of the castle keep. Russian guards met us, but the Castle itself again had mostly Cossack guards, now. I noticed several others waited inside. I saw Turks, Arabs, French Foreign Legion Kepis, and some Blue Berets standing out in the hall. I was waiting for the Swiss Guards to show up. When we turned the corner I saw the Swiss Guard, plus some men in dark serge suits in front of the doors to the Ballroom.

I guessed that the 'New UN' was being called to order.

As we approached the ballroom, another thought entered my mind; more a question actually.

'Why the girls?" What possible motive would such people have with them? Was it Sex? Where they their Masters now? Why were there so many secrets being kept from me?

Even more mysterious: Why was I now being invited to the party?

I actually just wanted to leave. There could be nothing good for me behind those doors! Yet the girls were quite calm, joyous, in fact. They marched, in lock step, ahead.

I had left my old life behind me. I had never asked for wealth or power. I did not even want it.

The doors opened.

The girls entered.

I stood almost frozen. To flee was my first choice. Kristina came back into view and motioned for me to come. I feared my girls would have become more slaves to whoever was inside. In many ways my heart would stop for I truly had loved them and did not wish to lose them, especially this way.

When I reached the doorway, I just stood and stared.

I could not understand why, what I saw, was happening.

As soon as I entered the Grand Ballroom I stopped and stared towards an open wall with stairs leading down. Below, one could see a great amount of activity going on. I got closer to Kristina and went with her to the open doorway. Several guards approached us. She showed her badge to one of the men. He left then returned to hand her another badge which she then clipped onto me.

The men stood aside and we proceeded down to the lower level.

"Just follow me for a while, we are going elsewhere and this area is merely a viewing room where staff can relax and still check various status screens. We have a long way to go then many of your questions should be answered, my love."

I was more in a daze than really paying, what I saw, much attention.

I should have though, but even with my lady next to me, things did not look right.

I had thought the ones known as Cossack only survived as memory. I know they were on again, off again tools of the Tsar and he, before the Revolution; had them hunted and killed like wild dogs; paying a bounty for each head. I guess that was why the Russians tolerated them, still, these were not just old men, the old ones had suffered from the Tsar.

The Ukraine was just now separate from the USSR, but in most Russian minds 'Rodina' was still in the hearts and minds of the older populace. Perhaps it was like that with the Cossack, 'White Russians' or Gypsy legends still might be told. I had to ask Tatiana more.

Kristina had been almost dragging me along. We came to a doorway, it was opened and she led me inside. My ladies were all kneeling, even Tatiana. They had tears running down their faces, dripping off from lowered heads. If anyone had hurt them, they would die or I would die trying to avenge them.

There was no longer any thought of fleeing. I did not even think of myself, but no one, nothing was so grand or powerful that my ladies should be made to suffer like this. I tried to push Kristina behind me and stepped towards the kneeling girls. Another door opened and in walked three men, the Cossack General, a man wearing what looked like an old WW II German uniform and the 'Dead' Baron.

"You 'Sons of a Bitch' was all I could say as I charged at them. 'Death to traitors', I yelled, as everything soon went dark for me. Waking up, I was not sure I was waking up. Everything sort of hurt. My body tingled, in some ways I was more attuned than I ever had been before, only this time I could only hear in my head, my heart pounding and the blood rushing threw my veins. I fell back asleep.

I did wake up, several times it seems, but I did not want to. If this was death I was willing to accept it, if it was not, then I knew I was in deep shit and was in no hurry for any 'questioning'. I know a real man does not show emotion or, worse 'cry' but I thought again of my ladies, of what might be happening to them. I knew to save them pain I might do anything I was asked.

We had been trained to be able to end our lives by a certain swallowing of our tongues or to stop up the airway. This could be done without use of our hands, feet or any devices. It would not save them directly but it would make them useless as pawns against me. In that way, they could escape being used. I did as we had been instructed. There was this quiet, and peaceful state you had to learn to go into. The human body tries to 'fix' or correct the mistakes we make. By going into this dream, given enough time, the body is unable to overcome the forced dying.

Peace finally came, the dream was in my mind and all seemed to be going well, until, those damn tubes were shoved down my throat. People in white coats were running around, Someone was injecting something into my chest and my head was spinning. Damn, damn, damn, why can't I do anything right? I thought. I fell back, asleep again.

The nice thing about a dream is you can be anything, go anywhere and do anything. The bad thing is you usually wake up. I liked this dream, I did not want to wake up.

Beautiful women were stroking my head, warm sunshine bathed my face and a gentle breeze told me maybe there was a 'Paradise' and I should make certain there were a proper number of 'Virgins' there to console me. Life was good but this 'death' was even better.

Then I risked everything and opened my eyes. I saw the face of an Angel, but an angry looking god stood above her. It was my Kristina and she was crying. "What the Hell!" I thought as I tried to lunge for the angry face but nothing happened. The face shook his head and I recognized him, the Baron was there, so this must be Hell and not Paradise after all.

"No, Don't try to get up!" came a voice. Not sure what tune was playing but there was this wonderful feeling, soft music freeing me like I was floating on a cloud.

I remembered that feeling from my interrogations. I had been injected with something and was feeling no pain.

When I woke up again, I quickly heard: "Don't try that again! In fact just lie there and listen! No one is or was trying to hurt you. It was to be a surprise! One to thank you!"

Well guess who got surprised.

"Your ladies have been like true Banshees, I have not had a moments peace for over two weeks. They are worse than my wolves, they look at me with eyes that throw daggers. Their nails like claws ready to tear me apart. If you would have died, I hate to think that even my guards would have been hard pressed to save me."

I saw a smile. All I could do was take a deep breath and try to sigh. "Ouch!" Even that felt bad.

"Someone will remove the tubes and oxygen. Just relax and I'll send your harem in, God knows I must send them all in at once or else. I am sorry that you did not understand what was going on. You did not react as we expected. We all are truly sorry for your pain."

I was going to start asking my 23,000 questions until Kristina, followed by my bevy of beauties charged in. I could only raise my hand, she took and kissed it, tears falling from her face. When the life support was removed, even the very weak "Hi!" I uttered brought a ton of crying females to my sides. Even Max, was crying. A rare sight.

There was no one, clearly understandable voice, but the gist of their sobbing was something like they thought I was dead or maybe dying.

Funny, that was the same fear I had about them. One thing I noticed was they were really, really attractive, even with tears. I could only guess how bad I looked.

I'm not certain that I ever got the entire rundown of everything that had happened. I do know that for the next three weeks no one even came near us.

In the order of nature, the female of the species is usually the more aggressive. Unless it is for mates or territory, the males just sort of lie around. Try to pick up a pup when the mother is around and you will see what I mean.

My ladies were 'on guard', they say Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, treble that and a Marine Battalion would be hard pressed to get near me. I think those Cossack guards would have even turned on the General, if needed to protect Tatiana and, by default, my ladies.

I no longer felt 'in danger' but Gino had provided a sort of security of his own for us. It was not anywhere the numbers the Cossack or Russians had, but what was significant, I found out later, was the comments my 'brother' had let slip out. Should there be any more surprises, each and every member of their little club, their families, friends, associates even the cats and dogs would eventually met an untimely end, whether we were alive or not. No one doubted the threat. Having Gino call me 'brother' unsettled some people.

Bear and the two 'smaller' men; Ivan and Igor from the club; seemed to always be nearby now. They were quite easy to spot, I think that was the idea, a reminder of what might be. What could not be seen, became a joist at windmills. Everything and everyone was becoming paranoid. Like I said, no one even came near us for three more weeks.

We had a sort of roll call one morning.

Max, Maria, Monique, Ramona, Monique, Tatiana, Kristina and Sophia all were kneeling in line. Igor, Ivan and Bear off to the side, watching.

"It is time to either leave or to join the living. Things cannot remain like this. I, myself do not really know if it was meant to kill me, capture you or was truly a surprise, but I just don't care. I have never liked the way these people are. Everything seems a game to them, like pieces on a chess board. Some of you may wish to stay, if so you have my blessing and are free to do so. Any who wish may join me. I am leaving, this time with any who still are foolish enough to join me. In the near term, we or I will be going to Gino's estate. From there I'm not sure. I love you all but there are things here I just do not understand, nor trust."

It was a mixed time for me. Kristina came to me, knelt at my feet with 'little' Bear walking behind her. No one else moved, not even Max or Maria. It was an unexpected and somber parting when we left that evening. Gino and Paulie took Bear, Kristina and me to his home.

I never was to find out why things had happened. Gino had known something though, hence the threat he had delivered. Of all the possible futures available to us, when our twin girls were born we elected to raise them first at Kristina's Palace, when they were 18 mos old, we moved to that little Island. Bear and Mei's little flyer came with us. The Sultan made certain things remained peaceful, just in case.

For the first time in my life I was really happy.

One day, off in the distance I heard above the wind, "Oh Ryan ... Guess Who?"

Edited By TeNderLoin and Sagaci

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