I woke with a dull rhythmic pounding in my skull. My head wasn't sore though. It was the drums. Lifting myself up on my elbows, I looked around, stunned by the very different viewpoint I had of the cave.
The ritual was always held here, and I'd been involved a few times before, but then I'd been one of the naked children, cavorting on the outskirts of the main event, buzzing on the aromatic smoke, and grabbing at the boys around me.
Tonight, I was lying near the centre of the huge space, on a large flat rock covered with animal skins of various sorts. I was still naked, and nervous, all alone with everything happening around me.
Over near the cave entrance, I could see a group of the young adult men, naked of course, large drums slung over their shoulders on wide leather straps. They were creating the pounding bass that was sailing through my body. A complex series of practiced manoeuvres resulted in a simple beat, impractical to ignore, impossible to escape. The men were standing in a semi-circle with one of the ceremonial fires in front of them. The intoxicating smoke floated thick above them, drifting aimlessly in the largely windless cleft in the hills near our village.
Some of the young women were teasing the men, shaking their breasts in front of them, attempting to distract them from their drumming. It was fun, but a waste of time. The men wouldn't stop until this part of the ritual was over, and I wouldn't be lying here watching then. I wished I could be with them, teasing and giggling. It wouldn't be the first time.
Every year one girl had to go through this, and I was honoured to be chosen, but I wished it could be someone else today, and that I could go and flirt with the boys. Last time I was here I lost any trace of innocence. I groped almost anyone I could get near, high on the weed-smoke, aware that all the rules were put aside for the day. Most of my friends did things at a Ritual that they wouldn't talk about later. I was one of them. The boys talked about it more, and I was the subject of discussion for a while. I deserved it.
As I sat there feeling the pounding of the drums, and watching the early signs of the ensuing orgy, the tribeswomen noticed I was awake, and things started to happen.
After a whispered conference near the cave entrance, the drummers increased the tempo a little, their sweaty bodies swaying in the dim light, and the attendants threw a little more weed on the fires. The smoky taste in the air became stronger, and then the girls walked toward me, in single file, their hands carrying various items. As they approached, the talking stopped, and everyone, except for the drummers, stood or sat quietly, waiting and watching.
The Headwoman came up to me now, and spoke quietly. "Lie back Leear. Let us attend you tonight. And relax girl. You'll be alright."
"Greetings Headwoman," I replied, starting to recite the memorised lines. "I welcome your..."
"Yes, yes girl. I believe you learnt them. Quiet now."
"Now, Leear. Just lie quietly. Feel what is happening. You cannot think your way through this. You must live it."
The girls surrounded me then, chattering quietly amidst the smoke, and the beat. I looked at their faces, and saw their pin-like eyes. They were well under the influence already. A couple of my good friends were in the group, but they didn't return my gaze, looking instead at the bowls and jars they carried; embarrassed perhaps. The skin on their bodies was flushed, and their nipples were erect. They were excited. I was just terrified.
There were two paths to womanhood in the tribe. Most of the girls would become attendants for a ritual, and the next day they would be regarded as grown. But every year, one girl was chosen for a special honour. This year, I was that girl, and despite wanting this for my entire life, I would have swapped places with any of the others in an instant, right then. I'd never been this close to the anointing before either, and wasn't quite sure what was going to happen. I was about to find out.
Surrounding me quietly, and listening to the Headwoman intone a prayer, the girls all then scooped some white paste from bowls, spread it on their hands, and proceeded to touch me all over, the cold paste a shock at first, the small tender warm hands reassuring. They spread the gunk all over the parts of me that they could reach, before calling a couple of the boys over to turn me. These boys were familiar to me, but I'd never really seen them like this. The influence of the weed was obvious, their erections like small trees before them, large and hard, and I couldn't help comparing them. They moved me in a detached way though, lifting and turning me with minimum contact, and left again, the girls turning to coat their erections with the paste before they left, flirting and carrying on shamelessly. The Headwoman had to stop one of the girls who was industriously rubbing the cock in front of her, and thrusting shamelessly at it.
Lying on my front now, breasts pressed into the skins beneath me, I couldn't see so much, and started taking more notice of my feelings. The smoke was getting to me as well, and the touch of the hands was exciting, though normally I wasn't at all interested in being caressed by girls. So many soft hands were kneading my back, buttocks and legs. It was very nice. Better than nice. I could feel my thighs getting damp, my arousal rising gradually, with the weed adding a certainty to the feelings.
Suddenly the paste was all rubbed in, and they stopped. My skin was hot, and I desperately wanted the hands back. I didn't have to wait long for it to happen. An old woman walked around the group, collecting up the paste bowls, and departed with them. I knew from experience that others in the cave would take the containers and scoop out any remaining content, to rub it on themselves, their friends, or their spontaneous partners. The aphrodisiac was thoroughly reliable, especially in the presence of the weed-smoke, as I knew from experience.
The girls picked up the jugs then. I could only see those near me, but I felt it when the liquid in them started to fall on me, the precious juice dribbling slowly over my back, neck, legs and buttocks. I could feel the fluid ooze down between my buttocks, and further, mixing with my own moisture, exciting me further, caressing me somehow inside. Then the hands returned, wiping, spreading, and finally kneading the deep red plant extract deep into my skin. I could already feel the reaction between it and the white paste, and my skin fizzed with the overload as they dribbled a little more, and rubbed it in. Only in the ritual were the two aphrodisiacs mixed together. Inevitably, my terror had disappeared, replaced by a gentle but increasing arousal.
After a few minutes, or centuries, of this, the boys returned to turn me over again. I knew the rules, but tried to assist them, feeling enthusiastic, and was caught by the Headwoman. She made them put me down again, and do it properly. I reluctantly made myself appropriately limp, as required. This time, I could see a lot, and could tell how the boys anticipated this step, presenting their cocks to their preferred girl again, and allowing the girls to dribble a little of the redness on their solid poles, and rubbing it in themselves, before cupping their hands to the girl before each of them, and silently requesting additional supplies. The liquid was not placed on the penises however, but massaged into the breasts of the girls; nipples erect now, the girls smiling as they whispered to the boys. The young men and women drifted together, and hands wandered randomly, stroking cocks, caressing breasts. I could see one girl had a hand on a penis, and the other inside herself. I could understand why. I wanted to touch myself as well, but knew I was not permitted. My nipples were hard as stone, and I desperately wanted to relieve the tension. I was drenched now, between my legs, excited and willing. The nervousness was completely gone.
As another drum joined the relentless beat, the girls shooed the boys away. The boys left happily enough, knowing that they were now men, and looking forward to proving it as soon as the girls were finished with me. The girls returned to their task, dribbling the red liquid on my front now, delightfully cool over my breasts for a moment, and they caressed it into me, everywhere except my face, and between my thighs. I delighted in the rubbing even more now, relaxing to the feelings, losing myself in the attention, the massage.
As they continued turning my skin red, I could feel my level of arousal overcoming me, and as the Headwoman and her assistant gently kneaded my nipples, I was pushed gloriously past the point of no return, and I orgasmed spontaneously, my body shivering as though cold, my muscles clamping as a groan escaped my open mouth. The Headwoman looked down into my eyes. She smiled.
"Yes, Leear, nice isn't it? I told you there was nothing to worry about."
The girls stopped then, conversing quietly, deciding they had done enough. I could see the flush of their skins, and their erect nipples, haphazardly red. Their faces too, were flushed with excitement, as they turned one by one and kissed me, before walking off with the precious jars, arm in arm, looking for the recently promoted men.
Alone again in the middle of the cavern, my senses heightened by the attention, the potions, the weed, and the hands, I wasn't sated at all by the orgasm, and wanted desperately to get off the table and find a willing man. There were certainly enough of them around. I could see everyone flirting around me, at a reasonable distance, couples and groups of varying sizes and ages. Not all the girls were with boys either. Those who felt the urge, or the curiosity, were flirting with the other girls, or, strangely, choosing this gathering to take care of the urges in their own bodies, inhibitions largely disposed of for a little while. The males too, were flirting with each other in some cases. Nothing was forbidden during the Ritual, so long as the participants were willing.
I could see a young cousin of mine now, his hands all over one of my best friends. He normally wouldn't get anywhere near her, but she welcomed his attentions now, pulling him to her body, attaching her mouth to his, willing to take this as far as he wished, though not quite yet. I could see his hard cock and wanted it myself, wanted to watch them as well.
At a new change in the beat from the drums, another group of four boys came in to stand beside me. They carried a flat bowl with them, a dark heavy plate made of black stone. The plate was liberally sprinkled with a red powder; a dried version of the contents of the jugs. The boys walked around me slowly, their feet in time with the drums. Their erections were plainly obvious, as was the excitement on their faces. This, for them, was the equivalent of being chosen. I would have taken any one of them, on the spot, if I could. As they reached one side of my body, the group stopped for a moment, bowed to the audience, and turned to me. They carefully placed the heavy dish on my stomach, and two of the boys stood with their heads bowed, the audience silent again, and waiting. The other two boys walked around to the other side of the rock, and faced me. Now they surrounded the plate. They stood still, smiling, and waited.
The beat of the drums and the smell of the smoke took over. The groping and flirting stopped, and everyone in the cave stopped moving, except the drummers. At some unknown signal, the drums stopped for a moment. The boys each took their own cock in their preferred hand, and as the thump started again, they started to stroke. It didn't take long. The thunderous simple beat, and the narcotic drugs took hold, and as they stood there, hips thrusting, hands stroking, one by one, they ejaculated, spraying semen in the bowl, and all over my stomach. These boys were young, and strong, and they produced plenty of white fluid before they stopped, smiled at each other, gave me a quick kiss on the lips, and raced off. Under the influence of the weed, it wouldn't be long before they were hard again, and successfully completing this part of the ritual meant that they were men.
As the boys left, an old man stumbled up to the rock. The Headman was much older than his wife. His important position in the tribe had convinced his current wife to take up residency after his first wife had died. Most days, he looked as though the Headwoman were sucking the life out of him, but tonight he looked majestic, covered in a skin robe with everyone else naked. His part in the Ritual was largely ceremonial, and didn't take too long, which was just as well at his age. He said that the weed affected him just as much as the younger tribesmen, but everyone knew he was lying.
He approached the bowl carefully, and as he recited prayers quietly, he mixed the fresh semen with the powder, using the index fingers of both hands. His fingers became covered with the pink mixture, and he moved between my legs to begin the second anointing.