The furious sounds of a chained animal fighting her bindings started up as soon as I touched the doorknob. I opened the door, the chain links rattled, and the large wooden board with the three holes in it, one for her neck and one for each of her wrists, slammed repeatedly against the brick wall. But her efforts amounted to nothing except making sparks fly and tiny wood chips and specks of sawdust glue themselves to her sweat, born of frustration and anger.
Her eyes, her non-human eyes of fiery rage lit the room crimson. But when they saw me they were unable to suppress the joy she felt at my entrance, and blue flickers moved across them. Not because she had been standing upright with her neck and wrists caught in the unmerciful grip of the board for five hours, unable to sit, unable to eat or drink, but because she truly missed me. She would always tell me that I was cruel and hard, and loved me ever more dearly when I proved her right.
"Wolf!" she snarled, revealing her teeth. Where a human woman will have twin rows of evenly shaped ivory, she had incisors like needles, and long, sharp fangs that could easily rip out a jugular vein. "You evil swine! Release me! Now!"
I went over to my prisoner and looked down at her. I had had something to tell her, but the sight of her naked, struggling body forced it from my mind. She was a small, ferocious animal. Less than five feet tall she was a head and then some shorter than me. Her shoulders were slim and her neck delicate; she was a slender, petite woman. Her olive skin was sleek and perfect, and possessed an inner glow that also added to her strange attractiveness.
But it was not the skin that immediately drew a man's eye. Her breasts were that of a larger woman's, firm and full, and with tender nipples. But if a man saw her back instead of a front he would have seen a pair of hips and buttocks that rivaled her breasts, inviting him to put his hands on them and feel the soft touch of desire as they swayed seductively in front of his loins.
I shook my head and sought her lips instead. When she closed her mouth and hid her teeth they looked like that of a pouting courtesan. As our faces met I felt as if I was swept up into a raging sea, for so passionate was she when she kissed. Even when she was furious with me like now, she would never, could never, deny me her lips.
Her face was one that was hard to describe other than that of a Goddess of the strongest emotion. Expressive, dark eyebrows and the longest lashes I had ever seen, framed the fiery pools of flame. Her snub nose was cute but could, like now, flare dangerously. In the same fashion her dimples could both charm me utterly as well as redden as her temper rose marvelously, and it often did so.
I patted her hair lovingly. It was jet black, straight and with a sheen to it that made it look lustrous no matter its condition. When I had met her she had slashed it short with her strong and sharp nails, but now I refused her permission to cut it. And, like her teeth and claws, it grew far faster than that of a human. In the three months we had been together it had grown almost five inches, and now it fell nearly to her shoulders.
She was a hellcat, a vicious creature of the deep forest, and she had willingly accepted to surrender her body and soul to me. It is said that it is impossible to tame a hellcat, but I had decided to try. Not so much as for the challenge, which it was, or the desire for dominance and mastery, which I felt, but because it was necessary.
"Release me," she repeated, shaking her head and, by virtue of the wooden board, her entire upper body. "I need to visit the latrine, I am hungry, and I am beginning to get cramps!"
"It depends," I repeated, my hand once more finding the tresses of her hair. She could not deny me.
"On what, exactly? On what!?"
"If you have learned your lesson, Rainbow." It was her flickering eyes that had prompted me to give her that name.
"Damn you! Why do you care about that pig?"
"Ah, good. You remember, at least."
"Yes, yes," she rolled her eyes and gnashed her teeth. "I shall not take and eat animals that do not belong to me. Yes, yes."
"That is correct," I smiled. "But have you truly learned it?"
"Yes! I have learned that I am not allowed to hunt what I want! I want to hunt my own meat and I want my meat fresh! I have learned that I have to be stuck inside this damn tiny room with this useless kitchen where you burn meat and these idiotic table and chairs or what you choose to call them, and that repulsing mattress to sleep on, and a bloody, stinking latrine down the hall! And why? Because of my race! Because you big, useless humans fear me!"
I stopped and looked down. This was the true heart of the issue. Rainbow hated the city. She truly detested it. It broke my heart to have to punish her whenever she just followed her nature. But as long as we lived in Oganzar, I had to do it for her own safety. Hellcats were known to eat humans on occasion, and they had been demonized in all countries bordering the vast forests where they lived.
"Listen, Rainbow," I sighed, the fun of my little game vanished. Untying the string that bound the two pieces of wood that made up the board, I freed her. "I don't want to force you to adapt to the city. You can go back to the forest again, if you want. You can be free and wild again, and eat fresh meat. You can sleep under the open sky, and roam wherever fancy takes you. I would love to come with you, but I have a mission that forbids me. You know that."
She stared at me for a moment, massaging neck and wrists. Then, without a word, she put on the hooded, brown robe she had to wear whenever she went outside the room, and left. Five minutes later she came back, and threw the robe on the floor.
Her flaming red eyes found mine, and angry tears sizzled into oblivion. "You filthy scum, Wolf! Don't you even dare suggest such a thing! Leave? Me? After I have gone through three bloody months of misery!?"
Her hands clasped and unclasped in unconscious violence, and she continued: "I will stand by you on this mission! I will steal and murder for you! I will be trained in every way you choose fit! I will crawl to hell and back for you! And if you do not think that I will be true to my choice, that I wish it otherwise..."
She did not finish the sentence, but the light that flared in her eyes was so intense that I could hardly even see her face. All of the room was bathed in crimson light, and any who looked through the tiny window would surely have to wonder.
"I am sorry," I mumbled. "I just ... Well ... I don't want to keep happiness away from you."
"I will have to wait and work to find true happiness, it seems," she said, calming down a little. But her now protruding jaw still quivered with emotion at a point next to my nipples. "But I will find it with you. You understand that, you maggot!?"
"One day I will have to do something about your swearing," I smiled, feeling a small amount of consolation.
She arched one eyebrow.
"But not tonight!" I laughed and extended a hand.
She took it, and we kissed once more. Her dangerous body, wiry underneath its soft exterior, capable of stealth and athletic endeavors far beyond me, it melted against me, her lips upturned and her eyes closed in silent tenderness.
"What do we do tonight then?" she asked me gruffly when we parted. "Before you use that damn manhood of yours to pierce me into oblivion, I mean. Being caught in the board sure tickles me inside, and I have had four hours to work up a frustration that will take you at least four hours of hard work to release! You owe me!"
"Maybe I do," I smiled. I wouldn't mind releasing some of that frustration of hers right there and then, and my erect, needy member strained against my greenskin pants. But I had begun to get to know Rainbow by now, and knew from experience that she was aching to go outside, more badly than she would ever admit even to herself. It had not been foggy in Oganzar for a week, an unprecedented occurrence due to the dry weather we had experienced recently.
"Am I repaid," I grinned at her, having just remembered the news I had returned to tell her in the first place, "if I say that I may just have picked up a clue, a most interesting piece of information that can finally get us out of this miserable existence as no-good, self-righteous thieves?"
"You are not a thief!" she said, sitting down demonstratively on the floor as I coaxed our small stove into life with some wood chips and lighter-bark. "You are of the Order of Ulv, and you are fighting a war!"
"Call it what you like," I smiled at her willingness to come to my defense even against myself, as I put some logs into the stove. There was the pan, and there was the raw bacon of the small pig Rainbow had killed, slaughtered, and carved. She had saved the best parts for me. I deplored punishing her, but I knew that somewhere here in the city there was a family that had been feeding this pig, just like other poor folks would do. "Robbing henchmen of sorcerers that we suspect are associated with the Black Circle and Iron Hammer is not what I call fighting a war."
"The Iron Hammer destroyed your Order! You are the only one left!" Sitting cross-legged she waved the meaty bone she was gnawing agitatedly in the air. "They took your home town of Maurur and burnt it! I know, I was part of the invasion. And now we hear news of how they betrayed my people. I have a grudge against them as well!"
.... There is more of this story ...