Jul. 5th, 2006 10:49 am
birthrightgreen: (Baby)
If Kartane SaDiablo had his way, I never would have been born. It was his habit, you see, to break a young witch, no more than 12 or 13 at the most, and keep her until he seeded her. Then he either terrified her into spontaneously aborting or had one of the Healers under his mother's thumb take care of it. Once the child was gone, he tossed the girl into the street to return to her family in shame or to find work at a Red Moon House.

For centuries that was his game and none of them escaped. None until Titian.

She didn't go home, and I've never known why. Perhaps the Priestesses at the Gates back to Kaeleer could not be trusted? Perhaps she thought her family would not accept me, though they have done so with open arms since my coming here. Perhaps she was ashamed, though she never showed such shame to me. She didn't go to a Red Moon house where they would have been reluctant to take in a pregnant whore, and he could have found her.

No, she ran and she hid in the streets. She whored herself for a pittance to keep us both fed. She taught me what she could to keep me safe. And she screamed her last breath to keep me safe, pulsing energy in the walls to warn me from our home when Kartane sent an assassin to finish that which he hadn't been able to. There was no reason to kill her except that she ran, except that she bore me, and she knew that was the risk when she defied him.

I never understood any of it. Not why she didn't go home where she would be safe. Not why he wanted me dead so badly. And most of all why she didn't just abort me and make her way to safety and away from him, able to slide into the shadows and rebuild a life with as few reminders as possible.

None of the men who took me ever seeded me. I was lucky, I suppose, though I always wondered if it was damage from the first time. But I swore if they did, that I would get rid of their seed. That I would not carry the child of my rapist to term.

Only now do I begin to understand. I feel the tiny flutter of life inside me, the consciousness awakening though there is nothing physical yet that should give such a feeling, or so they tell me. This child was conceived in love. Wanted by both father and mother. Her life will be safe in a way I never knew. But what I have come to realize is that none of that matters where she and I are concerned. Not who her father is. Not how she will be raised. Not where she will live. Only that she is there inside of me. She is part of me and I cannot dream of harming her. Mine to protect. Mine to love. That I will share those moments and duties with a man I love means that I am blessed, and that she will know the wholeness I would wish for her, but it does not effect my love for her one way or the other.

To feel such a thing is to know, finally, why Titian did as she did. I would do anything for this child. The streets again. Separation from my family. Hiding forever. Whatever it took to raise her whole and healthy and safe in this world. I finally understand my mother, and I hope that wherever she is, she knows that.
birthrightgreen: (Corset by mirrorqueen)
My father? He had no right to such a name. She denied it, and I never called him so. But all right, sugar. If that's what you want. Let's talk about the man who sired me.

Women rule in Terreille, and the whole concept of Protocol has been perverted. It used to be a balance. District Queens served Province Queens who served Territory Queens--the strongest and the best, chosen by the dark Jeweled Blood of the Territory. Males served the Queen their heart led them to. The Blood looked after the landen, and the land flourished and it was good. Caste, social standing and Jewel rank worked together, a triumvirate of power and position that kept our people always in a dance of power and protocol and in balance. The strong protected the weak.

Or so I have been told. It is not so, now. Males, even privileged ones, are no more than slaves. Frightened, weak males strip any weaker female of all her power and frightened females ring strong males before they can become a threat. A strong Queen could challenge and change this, but males bed them too young and they rise from their Virgin Night broken and useless. No threat to the SaDiablo reign.

Kartane SaDiablo. Only son of Dorothea SaDiablo, Red-Jeweled High Priestess of the Black Widow Coven and ruler of Hayll. Most of Terreille has fallen into Hayll's shadow, into Dorothea's shadow. She perverts everything she touches, and her son is no exception. Weak-willed, cowardly bastard, he took his ire out on the weak, the helpless. Darkness forbid that a Queen could rise, strong enough to challenge Dorothea's rule. Any such she saw broken, and her son soon became one of her favorite instruments.

He was a pretty boy, I've heard tell. A broken man when I finally saw him, caught in the web that Jaenelle wove around Briarwood, but a pretty boy. His mother thought so as well. He was naught more than a child when she took him to her bed to pleasure her. They say that sort of thing can break a man. He couldn't stop her, so he took it out on those weaker. Servant girls speared so viciously they had to send him away because the other men complained they couldn't use the girls. He hated whores. The gossip in the houses was that he could only rise to the occasion if he caused pain, and only the lower houses allowed the games he wanted to play. He was banned from houses before he found ways to just dominate the young girls without marking the goods. But houses had rules, and he didn't have absolute power.

So he took to playing his mother's game. Find a witch, young, still a girl. Spear her, hard and vicious. Break her web of power and drive her beyond herself. He'd keep them sometimes. Make them play his game until he seeded them. Sometimes they aborted spontaneously. Sometimes he gave them a brew to drink. When the child was gone, he tossed them out to go back to their families or a Red Moon House or the gutter.

My mother escaped his depraved games. She'd worn the Green when he broke her past herself. She couldn't use more than basic Craft when he was done the first night. She escaped and she whored for her keep so Kartane couldn't find her and destroy the child she gave birth to. His child.


His mother's pawn found her while I was at school. Slit her throat. I ran, so they wouldn't find me.

And then I trained. I killed. Planned men's deaths carefully and cruelly and sent them to it.

Dress rehearsal, sugar. For the right place. The right time. For my meeting with my father.
birthrightgreen: (Deadly)
You don't become the most celebrated and sought after whore in a dozen Territories by mocking your clients aloud. I could set my own price for my services. Do you know the power that gave? In a world ruled by women, males were forced to kneel. Forced to serve. But they paid anything I asked for the chance to be with me. The females they served mocked and belittled them. Threatened their masculinity. But not me. No, I smiled. I stroked. I made them feel strong and powerful and they loved me for it. So many begged to take me away from all of this.

They never knew what I thought of them inside.

Don't get me wrong, sugar. I had clients I liked. Regulars that I got on with well, who cared for my pleasure as well as theirs, who made witty and charming conversation, who saw to it that I was taken to grand parties and shown off. But it was a game. They'd used me as a child and I used them as a woman. I played their game and I won and I laughed at them in my head and sometimes with Sadi, when we had chance to meet privately.

My family knows well how caustic I can be when I've no need of their approval to survive. Daemon says I'm snarly. I know I'm far too inclined to knife someone first, ask questions later. All those instincts I learned to hide when pleasing the men who bought my time. But even that is not mocking. Oh, it might be sarcasm, and it might be cutting sometimes, but it's not mocking. Not truly. It's just me.

My other clients? Those that I was paid to kill instead of bed? I went for the kill, sure and fast. I didn't take time to mock them before they died.

Except once. When Titian and I took Kartane. When we made him bleed and made him scream. Made him pay for her rape. Her murder. For what he did to the girls at Briarwood. For what he'd tried to do to me, his daughter. For what he did do, leaving me a motherless girl of twelve on the streets and the fate that awaited me there.

We made it slow for him. Took our time.

And I mocked him with each cut of my blade.
birthrightgreen: (tilted head - young)
It was decided. The man would make the house ready for us, and we would go in two days time. A home, warm and safe. School for me. I could read already. Mother had seen to that. But this Craft they spoke of...

Titian didn't talk about it. I know now, it's because she couldn't reach her own, and was too young to know what to do for me. Broken as she was, she couldn't teach me herself and she made barely enough money to see me fed. Tutors were an expense she couldn't dream of affording. But the man was going to pay for it, and he didn't ask her anything in return.

I practiced saying his name in my head as I lay in bed. Daemon. Sadi. Daemon Sadi. If I practiced other things in my head, that shall remain the foolishness of a ten year old girl that none of you need to know about.

All my practicing was interrupted by their voices in the other room.

"Who was her father?" Already that deadly purr told me to be wary.

"She has no father," my mother snarled back. It was her right. She could deny paternity. She'd never told me, that was for sure.

"Who sired her?" His voice hadn't changed tone.

Titian growled. That was never a good thing, and for a minute, I was scared for the man. I'd seen my mother kill. But then I remembered his eyes, and I knew that he couldn't be killed.

His voice was gentler. "Who did this to you? To her? Took you so young and then left you both like this."

"He doesn't know she exists. He can never know. Never." There was fear in my mother's voice and that scared me more than the rest.

I didn't know it then, but he could have just picked the information from her brain. For all I know, he already had. She knew that, too, of course. But for some reason he wanted her to say it.

Maybe he wanted me to know.

"Who was he?"

There was a long silence, and then finally, her voice again, defeated. Afraid. "Kartane SaDiablo."

Even I felt a thrill of fear at that. Dorothea's son. It was no wonder we were always so afraid. Hiding.

"I see." And he did. More than I did, then. All the reasons I had to be hidden. No one knew how strong I'd be, but if Dorothea knew she had a granddaughter who could grow to be as strong as I am now...I might not have been schooled in politics and Craft as I am now, but I knew that was bad.

That such a name would follow me. Haunt me. Her blood in mine. That taint. Hayll and then Terreille lives in fear of her, and we were no exception.

Only now I knew we had a reason.


birthrightgreen: (Default)

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