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2001-11-28 12:38:26 (UTC)

Natalie CHAPTER 1

It was already dark and Natalie was still lost. She
shivered. It was cold and she had nothing but her thin
shawl to shield her from the cold. Her skirt got caught in
a thorny bush. She stopped and tugged. The thorns refused
to let go. She looked up, her cheeks the contrasting with
the rest of her blanched face. Her long raven hair whipping
around her, her blue eyes looking around her. She clutched
her shawl even tighter around her till her knuckles were
white.

A movement through the trees. Natalie glanced in its
direction. Nothing. Fear was beginning to overcome her. She
looked down at her bleeding feet. Blood. She took her shawl
and began wiping the blood off her feet. Who knows what it
could attract. Her best gown was torn in several places.
She let out a cry of anguish and looked at her dress.

She had been visiting her relative’s house. Her uncle had
died. On her way home, she had tumbled down a hill and had
then lost all direction. She could not climb up the steep
hill for fear of spoiling her best dress. She smiled at the
irony. If only she had climbed up…but now it was too late.
She walked on.

She looked at the ground, littered with dead leaves, damp
from the rain. It was pouring and she laughed bitterly at
the thought of dying just as her uncle had. She stopped and
sought refuge from the rain under a tree. It barely helped.
It’s bare limbs towered over Natalie, stretching out
endlessly towards the sky. She closed here eyes and hugged
her knees. She was thoroughly shaking now.

She opened her eyes slowly and stifled a scream. A great
black dog was leering down at her. His teeth gleamed in the
moonlight. Then, both amazed and scared stiff, she watched
as he transformed into a man. The man was crouched in front
of her, looking at her with red-black eyes. “Come with me.”
He whispered to her. His whisper was heard over the heavy
rain. The silk in his voice ran over her and sent shivers
up and down her spine. He stood and handed out a hand to
her. She took his hand, without hesitation. His voice was
still echoing in her head and his eyes – she could not look
away from them.

He looked at her the whole time. She felt as if snapped out
of a trance when he looked away. “Here.” He said. She
longed to hear him speak. She felt like she could listen to
his voice forever. She didn’t bother looking around her.
But if she did, she would have found that they were in a
room gallantly furnished. He offered her a seat, but she
refused. Shaking her head. “You must be tired. Sit.” He
said once again. “I cannot my lord. I might spoil your
furniture.” She whispered. He laughed. His laugh washed
over her soul. She felt as if she lived to make him laugh.
To obey him. To please him. He saw her shivered. “Cold, my
dear?” he asked, stepping closer to her. She could not
answer him. He took her small hand and led her to a
room. “There are clothes in that cupboard. You may bathe if
you wish. I shall have dinner ready for both of us-” “My
lord,” She interrupted. “You are too kind...I couldn’t
possibly-” He put a finger gently on her lips. “Go.” He
said.

The room she had entered was smaller than the one she had
just been to. She stripped and stepped into the warm bath.
She lay down in the bath and closed her eyes. The water
around her swelled. It caressed her aching limbs. She
moaned as it gently massaged her breasts. Soon, the water
disappeared. She stood and walked over to a sliding door.
She opened it and saw some silk shifts folded neatly at the
bottom and velvet gowns hanging up from hooks. She wore a
silk shift and the plainest dress she could find.

He sat in a chair, which faced the door she had entered.
She peeped out the door then stepped out. He smiled at her.
She felt a stronger feeling coarse through her. By
instinct, she sat at his feet, and stared up at him. He
chuckled. “You are hungry.” It wasn’t a question. He fed
her, deriving pleasure from feeling her sweet lips around
his fingers as he gave her tarts, fruits and other foods.
She licked his fingers and turned away, blushing. He
chuckled once again, and she lay her head against in his
lap. “You must be tired. Follow me.” He whispered.

He led her to a grand room with a large bed. “Good night.”
He said, as he left the room. “You’re going?” She asked,
putting a hand to his arm. “You want me to stay?” He
asked. “Stay. Yes. Please stay.”


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