Chapter 4 – The Liar

Last Edited – 4/14/19

315 AT
Four Years After the Fall of Ariadna

Even though both Tabharos and the village of Earna were coastal settlements, they couldn’t have been more different. Where Tabharos was a bustling, cosmopolitan town, and growing bigger every day now that it was the defacto religious capital for the entire dominion of fate, Earna was a tiny village. Tabharos was dirty and grim while Earna was lovely and clean. It seemed as if most violent sailors and most unscrupulous traders made Tabharos their home while in Earna there was only a peaceful, tight-knit community of fishermen.

Most different of all, Tabharos was dominated by the faith of Karn, and in Earna things were much more complicated. For ages both Karn’s and Ariadna’s temples existed in the village with both being much less impressive than the temple to Nlala, the Goddess of Tamed Waters. Still, it had been evident that from those two, Ariadna’s temple was much more popular than Karn. The reasons for this were simple – while fishermen always tried to get Nlala’s blessing before going fishing, none of them would say no to a bit of good luck. And while they were still people, influenced by their petty rivalries and jealousies, they knew all too well that bad luck at sea was a death sentence – and the community was much too small and too tight to wish for anyone among them to die.

The horror of the religious war had barely touched Earna, and for a good reason – here, the most powerful temple was Nlala’s, and she and her followers thought little enough of Karn’s temple and its war. The only change the fall of Ariadna had wrought here was that a new priest of Karn had come – doubling their numbers. The new priest – a crazy-eyed fanatic named Skyvus – kept encouraging people to move against the four priestesses from Ariadna’s temple but he didn’t have much luck with it. Still, even in Earna people began to notice that Ariadna’s blessing began to fail. Slowly at first, then in greater numbers, the fishermen began to rely on Karn’s temple for it’s blessing instead, asking the new apparent god of fate to ward off their bad luck.

Then a fifth priestess joined the ranks of Ariadna’s temple, and not long after everything changed.

Turan was an old, rough looking sailor who had seen almost everything on the sea and was said to have escaped even the clutches of the fearsome Kraken – but those adventures had been long ago for him. His sea legs weren’t what they used to be – these days, he mostly financed the ships, sold what they brought back into port. Life as a merchant wasn’t the most glamorous life, but it kept food on the table for his sons. Between his years on the sea and raising a pair of boys, Turan felt like he had seen everything – but he still jumped like a little boy when the door to Ariadna’s temple closed behind him – completely on its own! Even in the previous years, Ariadna’s priestesses didn’t show the power of their goddess in such a way! The man knew little of the events far away, of the fall of Ariadna’s grand temple – only the that the priests of Karn claimed that their god now ruled over the goddess’s domain as well. The weakness of Ariadna’s blessings had seemed to lend authority to their claim – but power like this Turan had never seen from any temple, not even Nlala’s. Was this the reason the blessings stopped working? Had Ariadna been gathering her strength, returning now stronger than ever?

He walked through a dark corridor, jumping again when a puff of green, luminescent smoke rose from one of the big bowls standing at the sides. When he turned, he saw a priestess in white robe facing him, her bright eyes peering from behind one of the featureless golden masks the priestesses wore.

“Come,” she said and moved into one of the rooms without waiting for Turan, expecting him to follow – and he did.

Inside, there was a second priestess, sitting upon the high chair of the temple’s leading priestess. Her face, like all of the others, was hidden behind her mask – but Turan knew well who the newest priestess of the temple was. In a village so small, how could he not recognize Nira, even through her mask, even if he hadn’t known the girl had joined the temple. Silently, Turan chided himself, but he could not help but think of her differently that any other priestess – he had known her too long, since when she had been a child in truth.

Nira, Priestess of Ariadna?

Nira was a child no longer. She was young, that was true – barely of age, and her lithe, petite frame made her seem even younger. Earna was too small for the priestesses to keep to themselves, and they didn’t hide their faces when not serving their goddess, so everyone had seen her many times. Even recently, Turan had more than once seen the girl in the market or walking down the dirt paths that played the role of streets of Earna. He knew well how beautiful of a young woman she had become. Nira was tall, almost as tall as Turan, slim and slender and as straight as a spear. Her black hair, barely touched by curls even in the humid air, fell a bit below her shoulders. More than once, Turan had heard many a sailor admiring her long legs and perfect ass, or the almost fey beauty of her regal face and piercing blue eyes.

Here, however, in this dark temple, Turan could no longer see the pretty girl – he saw a priestess.

Nira sat upon the chair of the priestess like she was born to it. She wore a white and blue robe that clung to her body, and she seemed to radiate wisdom, power, and strength so clear that Turan felt his knees grow weak, sinking down to them. “Rise, supplicant,” she said after a few seconds. Turan was no longer a young man and he struggled to his feet, but not once during his difficulty did his eyes leave the mask of the priestess. He could feel the divine more clearly when he looked at her than he ever had before. He almost didn’t realize it when she started to speak. “What is it Ariadna can do for you?”

“I…” he shook his head, willing the cobwebs of devotion to clear. It was hard to keep his head clear. The priestess was the source, but the green smoke had a strong smell and stung his eyes as a bit as well, and he had to fight not to blink. “I have a pair of ships going out tomorrow morning,” he managed at last. “After Mikael and Artan fell sick earlier this month, I really need them to be safe, and storms can come without warning this season.”

“The goddess helps those that help themselves,” Nira warned, her voice smooth as silk. Turan found it hypnotic. “You know as well as I that not even Nlala can promise you there won’t be a storm at this time of year. Are your ships in good repair? Are your men well prepared for the coming storm?”

Turan nodded enthusiastically. “They are, priestess – I swear they are. They are the finest sailors I’ve ever employed, and my ships might be nothing special to look at, but they are good ships – they’ll bring my sailors home without misfortune. My word of honor!”

The mask hid the priestess’s face, but he could still hear the smile in her voice. “Yes, I believe you.” She stepped forward off of her dais and right up to the older man, laying one of her gentle, warm hands on his shoulder. “You are a good man, Turan, and the goddess watches over men such as you.” Turan felt warmth flow through him as Nira touched him, and he shuddered. “You have the goddess’s blessing, and her protection,” she promised. “Of course, none but Nlala can promise what you will find in the sea. If it’s bounty you look for, she alone can grant it to you.”

Turan nodded enthusiastically, still feeling the holy warmth from the priestess’s hand. “I have asked her temple for their blessing already,” he said, nodding enthusiastically. “They have given me their promise of bounty and as much safety as they can give me.”

If Turan had not been quite so enamored of the obvious power and holiness of the priestess Nira, he might have noticed how her shoulders relaxed just so slightly at his words. Instead, he noticed nothing but the deep sincerity glowing in her blue eyes. “Then go with the blessing and the love of Ariadna upon you,” she said softly. “My sisters will look forward to buying some of your fish.”

The final statement changed the tone from one of supplication to friendship. Suddenly, effortlessly, Nira was no longer a distant priestess, filled with authority, but instead just another friendly villager. Turan couldn’t be sure how she could manage the transition so well, so effortlessly, but it made him smile happily at her. “You know I would never charge Ariadna’s faithful for a meal,” he said warmly. “Long as she protected me and mine. May your seas be calm,” he said with a nod of his head.

“And yours bountiful,” she responded, nodding in return before she turned and walked back to her chair, awaiting the next supplicant to seek her goddess’ blessing.

Turan might be an old man, but he still had to admit he loved watching her go. Holy priestess she might be, a young child of his village she might have been, but he was merely old and not yet dead – walking away was definitely the best angle to view the beautiful girl from. Silly, perverted old fool. Smiling wistfully at himself and wishing he were thirty years younger, he turned and left the temple, walking through the hallways which he noted had all been newly painted and the wooden floors cleaned and scrubbed.

Ittar, one of his sailors, waited outside. “Did you get it?” he asked.

Turan didn’t stop walking, and Ittar quickly fell into step behind him. “Yes. Ariadna has given her blessing,” he granted. “Your ship will be protected by two goddesses out there.” As they walked down the stone paths of the village, they were forced to move single file – the bushes around the path and the homes combining to make it too narrow to walk abreast.

“Why not a god as well?” Ittar asked quietly. Turan abruptly came to a stop at the words, listening to his sailor. “What if the priests of Karn speak true, sir? What if only they can offer us their blessing?”

“They can’t,” Turan said, absolute surety in his voice. “The priests are snakes. They’ve always been snakes, and the new face is just as prone to slither as ever. Their tongues speak only lies.”

Ittar objected. “But…”

“But nothing!” Turan said, a bit of heat his voice as he visualized the sincerity in Nira’s bright eyes. “I spoke with the priestess, and I am sure we are in good hands. I will not insult the goddess by begging another for what only she can deliver.” He began to walk again and did not stop. Ittar, knowing he was overruled, shrugged his shoulders and followed after.

In their wake, however, a man in black clothing in red trim stepped out from between two buildings they had passed, the priest of Karn’s eyes narrowed in thought as he considered their conversation – and the opportunity it posed.

The stench of sex and the sounds of retching and choking filled the basement of Karn’s temple in Earna. “Gluk Gluk Gluk Gluk!” gagged the pretty blonde as the thick cock of her master pummeled her throat, pushing the bound girl against the rotting wooden wall as he thrust himself against her face again and again, uncaring of that fact that he was too deep in the poor girl’s throat for her to breathe.

Skyvus, Priest of Karn

When Skyvus had been sent to Earna from Tabharos, he had gone, but he hadn’t come as alone as the villagers thought he had – He had brought his slut with him. Sera had, just three months ago, been a priestess of Ariadna – but that had been before the fall of her goddess and the ascension of Karn as the god of all Fate. She had been captured along with the rest of her heathen sisters – but she had been one of those wise enough to see the true path, to swear allegiance to Karn. Many of her sisters still weren’t that clever, even after years. Or perhaps they were just that deluded.

Skyvus didn’t really care which – didn’t care whether Sera here was a true convert to Karn or whether she was just trying to avoid the worst of her fate by abandoning her goddess and she had no principles left at all. Either way, she deserved to be punished for serving that whore of a goddess before coming to him, and he meant to make her suffer – and he would enjoy every last second of it.

The priest buried himself deep in his broken whore of a fucktoy and left himself there, sheathed all the way down her throat. It only took a few seconds before she started struggling, trying to wriggle back away enough to breathe, but with the back of her head pinned against the wall there was nowhere to go. Sera wasn’t a very exciting victim anymore – she wouldn’t dare resist him anymore, and while she was certainly pretty enough, she was just a common slave now, nothing special. Nothing like that new priestess.

Every since Skyvus had arrived in Earna he had been watching while he preached. Before now, this far away village had been of no real importance to Karn, so the old priest had been a weakling – a conniving old man, vicious enough but certainly not strong. He hadn’t been there to try to bring the flock to Karn but merely to live comfortably in his service, and that had been fine. No longer, though – Earna hadn’t grown any more important to Jaras, but the High Priest had decreed that the temple of Ariadna was to be wiped out wherever it still existed – and there was still a temple of the whore goddess here.

So he had sent Skyvus – but after several months of observing, he hadn’t made much progress. He had been watching – and if anything, the influence of the whore goddess’s temple had only grown since he’d been here. The thing is – he knew the truth. Ariadna was gone, and her priestess’s power with her. There was no blessing anymore – their power and influence was all a lie. But the villagers believed that lie, and it was all because of Nira – he was sure of that.

He had been stalking her through the town for a few days now, and by Karn’s sweaty balls she was gorgeous – easily among the most beautiful women he had ever seen. It wasn’t just her body, either – she was smart, and witty, and funny. People liked her – she had charisma in spades. She was using it to lie to them; he knew that, but they wouldn’t believe it – and until they did they would never abandon her. More than once, he’d considered simply grabbing her where she slept and dragging her down to join Sera in his tender care, but that would make a martyr of her here in Earna and Jaras wouldn’t be pleased. And that wasn’t even to mention the temple of Nlala and the local guards, who would take amiss to public action against the priestesses of Ariadna until he could prove that they weren’t their own temple anymore, but under the authority of his – and therefore subject to whatever discipline he chose for them, to do with as he pleased. No, he needed to expose her as a fraud – and now he knew the way.

Skyvus finally opened his eyes and looked down – and sighed. Sera has passed out on his dick again. She had barely struggled to get free, beyond the trivial wriggling. The former priestess was pathetic. He couldn’t wait to make Nira his new slut.

That night, after the sun was long down and everyone was asleep in their beds, Skyvus left the temple. He hadn’t bothered to tell Rapha his plan – the other priest would just fret and try to talk him out of it. Skyvus wasn’t in the mood to show restraint, however – he hated this town. It only barely counted as civilization, he was surrounded by idiots, and everything stank of rotting fish. It was enough to make him long for even a shithole like Tabharos – at least there the church was in charge, and there were plenty of women to distract from how miserable of a blight it was.

Skyvus stalked through the night, careful not to be seen, but he needn’t have bothered – there were less than ten guards on duty now, and most of them were either on the outskirts of town looking for bandits, or playing cards in the town hall. There was no one to see him even if he was carrying a torch down to the docks, much less simply walking in dark clothing. Still, the important thing was that he was on the rotten old docks now, using the light of the full moon to find the ship he was looking for.

A few subtle questions around town was all he had needed to learn that the Clamshell and the Albatross were the two boats belonging to Turan. After that, he only needed to find one of them – and the faded letters on the back that proclaimed the six-man boat the Clamshell caught his eye after only a few minutes. He jumped on board, looking left and right, making sure he wasn’t seen – he needn’t have bothered. The docks were silent save for the rocking of waves.

Skyvus knelt on the ship’s deck, thinking. It would have been a trivial thing to ask his god to curse their voyage, but that would leave a trail that Nlala’s priests could follow, and it wouldn’t do to confuse the outrage of the village when they learned that Nira and her priestesses didn’t have any power. No, he needed something more subtle, but he didn’t know shit about boats. There was nothing he knew enough about to sabotage technically that the sailors wouldn’t immediately realize and replace. The priest pulled the black vial off of his belt, uncorked it, and wrinkled his nose at the smell. Fortunately, the wisdom of the Fury that Karn had sent to him had shown another way.

Elmrot was generally used as a poison, but it had other uses. Walking up to the bow of the ship, Skyvus poured out the vial bit by bit, letting the wood absorb it. He might be imagining it, but he thought he could hear the soft cracking as the wood tightened. The elmrot would weaken the wood, make it brittle without damaging it. On soft seas, like they were now, it would be as good as always. During a storm, on the other hand – Skyvus smiled, dropping the black bottle over the side and letting it sink in the dark water.

Tomorrow, while the ship was at sea, he would find a way to burgle the temple of Ariadna. He was pretty sure he already knew how Nira was convincing people of the whore goddess’s power, and that he could find evidence of it, and by the end of the day after that, the entire town would be more than ready to hear what he had to say…

The dim light of a low fire glinted off the dozens of glass bottles scattered around the table, all of them empty – the alcohol that had been within provided very little comfort to Turan as he rested his head in his arms on the table.


One of his sons was dead now, lost with the Clamshell when it sank in the storm three nights ago. With the loss of the ship, his business interests were probably doomed as well – and soon his two living sons would be thrown out of the street, along with him, unless they accepted charity from their fellow villagers – a fate almost worse than death.

And all because of those lying cunts.

Turan banged his fist down the table, the same place he had banged it a dozen times already tonight. Two more empty bottles joined the five others that were already on their sides. As he understood it, the “priestesses” were all in prison now, arrested by the guards for theft, fraud, endangerment, and a half dozen other crimes. Someone had found evidence of their lies in the wake of the disastrous storm – the barrels full of illegal herbs that provoked euphoria when burned and inhaled; the tricks and confidence games they had used to convince him and others of their power. It didn’t matter – that wouldn’t bring back his son.

A knock came at the door, and Turan lurched to his feet, pushing against the table and knocking over every bottle still standing, sending many of them to the floor as he staggered over to the door, ripping it open with fury. The man on the other side he barely recognized, but after a few seconds, his drunken brain placed him – the new priest of Karn. “Wha…” he muttered.

“I heard about your loss,” Skyvus said gently. “My condolences – but if you’d let me bend your ear a moment, I have an offer for you that you might find intriguing…”

“I’m telling you, I don’t like it,” Maxis said, shaking his head. “Most irregular. We can’t simply release such prisoners into your care.”

The mayor of Earna sat across the table from a tall man, middle-aged but with a withered face and a sharp, angled chin. Rapha wasn’t a handsome man, nor an especially well-liked one by Maxis or the others in the village, but he was familiar – a face they had known for years. The man standing behind him was not. Maxis instinctively disliked the new priest, Skyvus – the man seemed like a snake, and he didn’t like how the priest had been able to provide so much evidence against the priestesses of Ariadna. The evidence was all good, and seemed incontrovertible – but still, his instincts warned him that something was not on the level, and he actively did not trust the other man.

But it might not matter. Maxis turned his attention to the fourth man in the room, a broad-shouldered young man with rich brown hair down to his mid-back. “Danar, is what he says true?”

Maxis was hoping for support from the man – but as the priest of Nlala looked up, his eyes troubled, Maxis suddenly knew he wasn’t going to get it. “I’ve prayed on the matter,” Danar said softly, “and Nlala sent one of her Selkies to counsel me. The priest’s words are true – Teilin has cast Ariadna from the heavens and gifted her church and her faith to Karn. His claims that Nira’s and other’s deception is a matter of internal discipline for Karn’s church seems accurate.

“And as we said,” Rapha cut in, “we will be pleased to pay reparations for their crimes, and a weregild to the families of those they have harmed. Such a thing has already been arranged…”

Beneath the table and out of sight, Maxis clenched his fists. He didn’t have anything like a good reason to deny Rapha and Karn custody of the five priestesses, and he knew it – but he hated it. The mayor wasn’t sure precisely why, but it felt wrong to him – and it galled him there was nothing he could do. Something was rotten here… but he was helpless to do anything about it. “What you do in your own temple is your business,” Maxis admitted, “but keep it inside your walls, or you and I are going to have problems.”

Behind Rapha, Skyvus the snake nodded enthusiastically. “Of course. We would never dream of doing anything wrong,” he said – and grinned.

Nira wanted to die. She was sitting in the dungeon – in reality just a locked, emptied wine-cellar – and tried in vain to find a way out of their situation. She saw none and that only increased the feeling of hopelessness she was feeling. Everything she worked on, all of her plans… turned into ash in her hands.

Always she prided herself of being able to make the best out of any terrible situation, of her resilience that forbade her from surrendering – ever. Now, she wanted only to wallow in self-pity. It wasn’t the fact that the temple was destroyed and she and her sisters locked. No, seeing the work of her life destroyed was terrible, but she was pretty sure it wasn’t the worst part of the situation either.

She couldn’t decide what the worst part was. Was it the fact that people died because of her lies? That Clamshell had sunk with so many souls on board? She had been so certain the ship would survive. Otherwise, she would never have given her – Ariadna’s – blessing. Sure, seas were often treacherous – but it shouldn’t have been that bad this late in the season. Besides, it was a hardy ship with skilled sailors, and blessed by Nlala besides. How could it go so wrong? For a moment, Nira suspected some foul play – but she discarded that idea. It was just a way for her mind to look for excuses that would lessen her guilt. The fact was that without her blessing those brave sailors would never have sailed to their doom.

What seemed almost as bad was that in a real way she was alone in this situation. Sure, she was locked up with other four priestesses, but that didn’t mean she wasn’t alone. She knew they blamed her of their current predicament… and rightly so. It was Nira’s idea to start running the confidence game, to use tricks to help the image of Ariadna recover… to give people something to believe in. She convinced other priestesses to join her, to follow her in her plan.

Not only had she made them guilty of the death of those people by association, but whatever happened to them now would be her fault. It was enough to make Nira shudder. From what she knew about Karn’s temple, it wouldn’t be anything good, and she would be the one responsible for it. She tried to assure them that all would be well, but her words felt hollow, and the priestesses didn’t even bother responding. Nira couldn’t blame them.

She could only wait. Even sleep didn’t provide any relief.

Finally, they came for them — Maxis, Rapha, and even Danar.

“It was decided that it is an internal matter of Karn’s temple,” Maxis said looking away. “You will be brought there to be disciplined, as Karn’s priesthood sees fit.”

“Ariadna, no…” someone whispered – Nira didn’t even notice who. It might have been her.

A couple of villagers came into the cellar and brought the women out – and when Nira saw angry, hateful faces of all the people in the village surrounding the square, she felt another jab at her heart. The sun beat down on them as they were roughly paraded through the city, but it couldn’t warm the ice running through Nira’s veins as she began to fear what would happen. She had heard stories – true, she hadn’t seen what had happened to Ariadna’s grand temple, or even spoken to someone who had, but she had heard the rumors… the terrible, dark rumors that even drunken sailors lowered their voices to whisper. It was easy to try to tell herself that they were exaggerated stories, like stories of monsters lurking in the dark behind curtains or tales of leviathans larger than the empire itself lurking beneath the waves, but Nira couldn’t bring herself to believe that. When she turned her head to look back and saw the priest Skyvus walking along just a few steps behind the priestesses, she could see the look in his eyes. The way he looked at them as they walked – she might be innocent in the ways of men and women, but she wasn’t a fool and knew well the way men looked at her sometimes. Skyvus was staring at her like one of the drunkest of sea dogs, and it was perfectly clear to Nira that he was all but seeing right through her clothing.

Suddenly someone slapped her across the face. The fallen priestess straightened in shock, rising and looking forward only to see that the crowd before her had grown further. Her face was wet, and reeked – and it was only when she was the bright red object sailing toward her from a new direction that she recognized what had hit her – rotten fruit.

“Murders!” Someone in the crowd roared, heaving back to throw his own bit of food, an apple core.

“Deceivers!” shouted another as Nira heard a cry from behind her as one of the other priestesses was struck in the face by an overripe tomato.

“Whores!” spat another furious voice, and the barrage of fruit and buckets of water and goddess knew what else intensified. She could see the crowd boiling around her. She saw men and women with outrage on their faces, men and women she recognized and strangers both. The baker she bought her bread from was throwing a bucket of water at her. The carpenter that had fixed their leaking roof just three days ago was snarling curses as he flung fruit after fruit directly at her, caking her with the sticky juice. A pretty blonde stranger in a traveling cloak shook her head sadly as she watched them go, uninterested in participating herself but unwilling or unable to intervene. Occasionally, they threw rocks instead – Nira collected several bruises from stones, and behind her, Aliana had stumbled and fallen to her knees before a villager roughly lifted her back to her feet and pushed her forward.

By the time Nira reached the temple, her clothing was practically skintight – it had been soaked so thoroughly that it clung to her skin, showing off every bump, every curve, every tiny nuance of her beauty that it left her feeling more exposed than she would have had she been naked. Horrible as it was, the humiliated priestess felt a moment of relief as she entered the temple of the hated Karn and out of the sight of the jeering crowd that had followed her.

Then she saw the racks waiting for them ahead, and she suddenly longed for the crowd, if only to delay what she was being marched towards a few seconds further.

“Well aren’t you a damned mess,” Skyvus hissed out in his serpentine voice, a bit of a chuckle beneath it as he leered at the all-but-naked priestesses. Five villagers had followed them in, one for each priestess, and they began pushing them towards the stockades that had been set up when the priest of Karn stopped them. “No boys, we don’t want to make a mess, do we?” He grinned. “Take those rags off of them.”

Nira wasn’t stupid; she knew that everything was leading to this, to them being raped. But still, hearing this, hearing this wretch tell these men to strip her – this made the whole coming ordeal all too real.

Her priestesses, the priestesses she wanted to protect, the priestesses she been trying to protect were aware of what was going to happen as well. “No – by Ariadna, no!” one of them, a petite blonde named Yra whispered.

“Ariadna was the one who forced us – and you – into this situation,” Rapha said. “She is not going to help you.”

“What are you waiting for?” Skyvus asked the villagers. “Feel free to remove those rags from them.”

For a moment, seeing the villagers look at each other with uncertainty, Nira felt hope rising in her. Maybe not all was lost, maybe Skyvus’ power and influence didn’t reach as far as he thought and hopes. Apparently, it was one thing to hurl insults or even rotten fruit at the condemned priestesses when within the anonymity of the crowd, and this was something else. It was a different thing to take part in humiliating the priestesses, but as angry as the villagers were, they were all decent men – and the kind of things the priests had in mind for the priestesses was beyond what was acceptable for them.

And then Turan approached the five priestesses. Looking into his eyes, Nira realized her mistake. Maybe if Turan weren’t here, the villagers wouldn’t go through with it. But his anger was too hot, too fresh. And the depth of his belief in Ariadna and her priestesses that he once had made him now even more furious and bitter.

Still, she had to try.

“Turan, please,” she said but wasn’t permitted to finish her plea. He slapped her. Hard. So hard that she staggered back and fell to the floor.

“That’s for my son, you bitch,” he hissed and spat into her face. Turan leaned forward, grabbed Nira’s robe, and pulled on it, lifting her to her feet. Then he pulled harder, and there was an audible tearing sound as the wet robe tore in the front, exposing one of Nira’s perfect, perky breasts.

Skyvus took a step forward. “For all the deaths these whores caused,” he began, talking to the villagers, “You are to treat them like whores. You can do whatever you want to them, as long as you don’t kill or permanently maim them – they are to serve the whole village of course.”

“Ariadna, no,” one of the priestesses whispered, but at this point, Skyvus didn’t even bother mocking her about her fallen goddess.

“If they get pregnant – the children they will bear will belong to you, as compensation for the deaths of your children on the ship,” he grinned evilly. “If you want to use them in a way that will prevent conception – well then, that is your right as well. Do you understand?”

“Oh, I do,” Turan said, his voice heavy with anger – and lust.

“So… we can strip them?” one villager asked. “Really?”

Turan’s actions were the only answer as wasting no time he pulled on Nira’s robe again – and soon the torn cloth fell to the ground, leaving the woman completely naked. Nira’s perfect body being exposed to the crowd was a signal – some kind of admission or sign that it was ok. They didn’t need much more encouragement. The mob surged forward, and Nira and the other four priestesses began to scream as dozens of hands raked over their bodies. With her clothing already ripped and laying on the floor, the hands could pull and pinch and grab at her vulnerable body. In twenty seconds, more men had grabbed and squeezed her perfect breasts than she had ever considered allowing to do so in a lifetime – and the first man ever had touched her between her legs, followed only moments later by a second such man.

Yet in some ways, she was the best off. The fact that she was already stripped meant that while she was subjected to more humiliation, she at least suffered less violence. As the other priestesses had their clothing ripped off of them by a furious mob, the bound beauties were battered back and forth between the lustful men like a paper boat on a stormy sea. All that she could hear was a wordless mess of male voices, the screams of the priestesses, and the ripping and tearing of clothing as the girls were tugged around the ring of men surrounding them.

Skyvus stood back, watching with a small grin on his face as the hated priestesses were battered around. “Enough,” he said at last. “Enough. I didn’t want to make a mess, so I had to strip them here – but let us bring them to the racks before you have your fun. Come now, come now – not much longer. Bring the whores inside.”

As the men reluctantly backed off of her fellow priestesses, Nira could see their bodies, already bruised and completely exposed. None of the scraps of fabric left behind littering the floor could have been readily identified as “clothing.”

The five priestesses were dragged into the middle of the room, and one by one they were pushed into the wooden constructs. One of the five was a bit separate from the others, facing towards them rather than being in a line, and Nira wasn’t surprised when she was dragged towards that one. They quickly locked her into it, bent over – her arms restrained behind her back, and her head locked in place where she had to watch her fellow priestesses being similarly restrained.

All the way to the right was Yra. The young priestess was small, probably no more than a hundred pounds and barely more than five feet tall, her pale blonde hair cut to just barely longer than shoulder length. Yra was just barely older than Nira herself, having been born barely two months before her and before Nira herself joined the temple of Ariadne, she had been the newest priestess.

Alongside her, still fighting ferociously despite the number of men holding her, was Kara. Whereas Yra and Nira were young for priestesses, Kara was the eldest of them, the one that should by all rights be the elder of the temple. Bold and fearless and every bit as ferocious as her scarlet hair implied, Kara had taken surprisingly little convincing to go along with Nira’s confidence game, the good intent clear to her from the start. In her mid-thirties, she barely looked a day over twenty – unfortunately for her, given the attention she was drawing from the men.

Next in line was the dark-haired Anna. She wasn’t even struggling, but instead, silent tears streamed down her face – when she looked anywhere but at Nira. When she did, the priestess tried to glare. This hasn’t been her idea, and she had been reluctant to go along with it – but she hadn’t wanted to abandon her sisters and flee instead. Nira could see that she was regretting it now, and she knew that it was her fault.

Finally, there was Lyn. Lyn’s hair was normally a golden bronze the color of the sunset and as waved as the ocean, but the barrage of filth and sludge had affected her waist length hair most of all – mostly it looked brown now, and it was slick to her back as she was forced onto the rack. Lyn was perhaps the most beautiful woman Nira had ever seen. Once, the twenty-six-year-old priestess had spent time as an ambassador for the church, traveling the nation in a group of equally beautiful priestesses whom the High Priestess felt inspired rapture with their mere appearance. Now, she was covered in filth and surrounded by men intending to do more than merely look at her.

Then she felt Skyvus set up behind her, and shuddered as she felt his hand slid over her bare pussy. And then he pressed something over it, something sticky. “The false Temple Elder owes special punishment to our Lord. This hole has its own duties later. The rest of them belong to you – show the cunt’s what they deserve!”

There was just a moment when Nira thought that maybe the men had their fun stripping and groping them – maybe they wouldn’t go as far as to rape them. But even as she thought it, she knew it wasn’t going to happen. Their holes wouldn’t be spared.

Before today, she would have said that despite their shortcomings, these were good men. Now, she wasn’t so sure. Was her deception and the deaths of those sailors and fishermen something that pushed them into Skyvus’ hands and made them into rapists? Or had it been always in them, just masked beneath a mask of decency and the latest events allowed them to take the mask off? It was purely an academic debate, but one she couldn’t stop pursuing, despite the situation.

Though truth be told, she wondered if these men even thought of it as rape? Did they really buy the whole ‘children they will bear are the weregild for the children lost?’ It was, after all, just a stupid excuse to rape them. But in the mind of the villagers, was this rape? If the priests of Karn assured them that it was alright and Nlala’s priests washed their hands – then was it truly immoral? Nira knew what she thought, but she doubted the other villagers would agree.

As before, it was Tarun who first took action. He approached Nira, smacking her ass as he walked around her, admiring the view of her naked body bound in the wooden contraption. She shivered at his gaze. Sure, she could understand the anger and disappointment from him – but he was well beyond that at this point. Turan obviously liked what he saw, and there was some cruelty in his look that was satisfied by seeing her so degraded.

He leaned forward so that his mouth was next to her ear. “You will be the one to bear my son,” he said. “And since for now, your whorish cunt is not to be used I’ll need to entertain myself differently – however hurts you most, bitch.” He straightened up, spitting at Nira’s face. Somehow this act, more than anything before, brought the young priestess to the verge of tears. She could feel his saliva sliding down her cheek even as he circled her again.

There was a momentary paused as she heard him fumble with his pants – and then she felt his cock touch the entrance to her ass.

Really, if anything said that the whole excuse about bearing children was just an excuse, it was this. Nira had no doubts whatsoever that even for the other four priestesses, their cunts wouldn’t be the only holes that those would fuck. No, mouths would be fucked, and so would be their asses. Hers would just be the first.

She wanted to plead with Tarun, but she was determined to remain strong until the bitter end. She owed that much to her priestesses, at least as long as she could. Nira wasn’t sure if she would manage to stop herself from screaming when the anal rape began.

“Be strong,” she said to the bound women.

Yra was crying, not looking strong at all, but Nira didn’t blame her. Kara locked eyes with her and managed a small, defiant smile. Anna looked away. Lyn… Lyn’s face was expressionless, and Nira couldn’t know if the girl was too terrified to show anything, or if she had found some inner source of strength.

And then Tarun pushed.

Nira cried out in response to the feel of the fisherman’s warm, hard cock clenched between her pert cheeks as he pushed his weight down on top of her, pinning her hips harder down against the table of the stockade. That didn’t keep Nira from squirming, trying to throw her off. She bucked wildly like a wild and untamed animal, throwing her weight back and forth, rocking as hard as she can manage. The beautiful priestess was petite and slender, but she was surprisingly strong in her desperation. Unfortunately, she was nowhere near strong enough. The only thing she succeeded in was making it a bit harder for him to stay atop her and she did cause him to sway with her motions, but she does not cause him to take his vile cock from between her cheeks as she hoped.

Then she watched the rape of her priestesses begin, and her temper snapped. “Get off me!” she hissed, even knowing it would make everything worse. “Leave them alone! Don’t touch us, you despicable monsters!” She practically spat out through her rage. These women were her responsibility – and they were starting to scream.

Tarun, however, didn’t pay her words any attention. With the intensity that made her cry out, he dug his fingers into her hips, gripping on so tightly she couldn’t help but wonder if he was actually trying to pierce her skin with his nails. It hurt, but her attention was drawn away from that pain, more focused on how that massive erection ground between her soft, spread cheeks. The horrible sensation was only compounded by tenfold when she felt the spongy tip of his cock pressuring in on that tight little untouched fuckhole. The sensation was horrible! Fear, revulsion, humiliation, shame – All of those and more washed over her at once. He hadn’t even penetrated her yet, and she already felt violated. It was disgusting! “Stop it! Stop it you monster!” She protested, struggling anew.

Struggling while bound in a stockade was as exhausting as it was ineffective. Nira was tiring herself out and getting nowhere – nothing she did seemed to bother Tarun in the least. In fact, as she began to struggle slower, more tiredly, only then did he release her ass with one hand to grab his cock, making it easier to aim at her vulnerable target as he leaned forward, pressing against Nira with all his weight – and slowly, painfully, the tight muscle began to spread around him. White hot blinding pain shot through the young priestess’ body as he sank one painful inch at a time into her. It hurt, it hurt, it hurt – she couldn’t stop herself any longer. Finally, Nira screamed. Her slender body was wracked with sobs as she gulped for air, tears streaming down her pale cheeks as her first rapist proceeded to push further into her.

“Now, whore…” Tarun growled low from behind her, barely heard over the grunts of rapists and the howls of her priestesses. “Now you are going to hurt like you hurt me.” As if just him pushing his thick cock into her wasn’t painful enough, the man started to thrust, fucking her in the ass – fucking the priestess for the first time ever. The motions pounded Nira against the stockade over and over, her lithe battered with each heavy thrust. The pain – it was so intense that she no longer needed to worry about screaming or crying – she was too busy gasping, choking, sucking in ragged breaths when she can. Never in Nira’s entire life had she thought that such agonizing pain was even possible, but each thrust felt like he was stabbing her in the gut – and it just got worse with each new violent thrust of his rape rod into her ravaged hole.

Her slender arms shook in the stocks, her fingers curling, grasping helplessly at the air, unable to grab onto anything. It was like she was trying to pull herself away, kick Tarun – anything at all. Eventually, though, Nira just stopped, losing herself to wallowing in her pain and misery. She was vaguely aware of the other priestesses being raped, the screams, the slapping of flesh, but it was like it was happening through a haze, or a blindfold – she couldn’t seem to see any details – or at least get them to matter to her. Gasping, whimpering, the occasional scream – she could barely remember how she meant not to scream.

She hoped that it would hurt less with time, that she might get used to it – but it just got worse, her ass growing more bruised and tender with the time he spent slamming into that tight little ass. Nira screamed and cried when she could get air, even going so far as begging Tarun to stop at times. But he never does – and her first rape goes on for what feels like an eternity. Before long, it came to a point where she couldn’t even scream anymore if she wanted to. Her poor throat was raw, swollen and red on the inside. It ached painfully, her voice was raw – But even still, no pain her body could suffer could distract her from the searing pain coming from her ruined ass. Eventually, she all but collapsed in the stock, brokenly laying there and taking it – for what else could she do? She continued to cry, though any screams or yelps came out hoarse and broken.

By the time Tarun started grunting loudly, ready to cum, the beautiful young priestess was too weak to move. She was dimly aware of his animal noises, and she could feel something different happening, feeling his body tense, his cock going rigid in her bloodied ass. Then she felt the pressure as he erupted inside of her. It caused her belly to roll, threatening to make her sick as she realized that he just came inside of her – filling up her poor, bruised little ass. The salty cum burned her wounded insides causing her to sob more as she lay there helplessly in the stocks.

As Turan slipped slowly out of her asshole, the woman he left behind was no longer the perfect, untouched beauty of a priestess she had been. The lovely young woman’s eyes were swollen, puffy and red. Her cheeks were flushed, and her face glistened with fresh tears. Her black hair was soaked to her hair by her sweat, shining in the dim light of the temple. And she felt like her ass was nothing but a ragged, bleeding hole – she could actually feel the air on it like ice in a few seconds before she felt hot cum start leaking out of her hole and down over her untouched pussy and whatever that damned priest had put on it.

Never in Nira’s young life had she felt so – violated, so disgusted. She wanted to vomit – but seeing what was happening to her priestesses as if for the first time made her feel like she didn’t have the right.

The last thing Nira wanted to do was to see what was happening to the other priestesses. Her ass burnt like the bowels of a volcano. She felt thoroughly miserable, violated and degraded as never before in her life. She hadn’t even realized that such agony – physical, mental and spiritual – was even possible. She wanted just to catch a breath, to rest for a moment, wallowing in her pain and focusing on her agony.

But she couldn’t. The other priestesses were suffering because of her. Nira couldn’t turn her eyes away from them. She OWED them that much. Not to mention that even if she closed her eyes, she had no way to cover her ears to stop hearing the screams – even if she wanted to.

With her reddened eyes, she looked at her sisters, as much as the stockade allowed her to turn her head. What she saw, made her soul sink even deeper into despair.

The majority of screams came from Yra. The woman was screaming practically endlessly as her ass was brutally savaged. Nira’s throat has already given up, and she couldn’t understand how Yra – despite her voice becoming more and more hoarse – could keep it up.

The man behind her obviously had some experience with anal sex – or maybe enough dark thoughts and desires in him that he didn’t hesitate for a moment before pounding the girl’s ass as hard and fast as he could. Even watching it Nira felt weak as she couldn’t believe that the girl’s ass with all its tightness would even allow for such a pounding.

Kara alone managed herself from screaming, having bit her lower lip in this act of defiance so hard that it was now completely swollen and inflamed. The man behind her kept digging his fingers into her hips much as Tarun had to Nira as he proceeded to fuck Kara in long, strong thrusts. Her ass, her clenching muscles, were apparently providing ample resistance as he grunted in an obvious effort – but didn’t seem to mind. He was pulling his cock just so the tip remained inside the priestess, and then shoved with all his strength, with each thrust burying it an inch deeper.

Finally, Kara’s resolve broke, and his brutal thrusts tore screams out of her mouth. She screamed and sobbed and choked at her tears as Nira’s heart crumbled to pieces.

Lyn’s expressionless face didn’t survive the anal rape either. The man behind her was pounding her hard, reaching forward to grab and squeeze her swaying tits, mauling them each time he pulled out. The priestesses’ face was all red and wet from tears, contorted in a mask of pain and her breaths were broken, ragged as if she was on the verge of hyperventilating.

Then Nira felt hands on her ass, and her thoughts returned to her own ordeal.

“Please…” she whispered through dry throat “No – more – I can’t – no more – I’m begging you…”

She was sincere. She didn’t know how she would take another anal rape. Her ass was already so sore, and another cock fucking the bloodied hole her ass turned into would only feel worse – a thousand times worse.

“Oh shut up, bitch,” the man said, slapping her ass, and then she felt his cock touching her entrance.

“No – please – please,” she kept whimpering, hating herself at how pathetic she sounded – but that didn’t stop him from pushing in.

“Aieeee!” Nira found that she could still scream – even if her screams were weak – as she was as she felt his cock, scraping at the wounds inside her ass as it was pushed inside.

“Wow – still tight…” the man said.

At least he was pushing in slowly, almost gently – but not from the goodness of his heart, Nira was certain of it. No, it was more as if he couldn’t believe he was really assfucking the gorgeous priestess, so he took his sweet time, probing her ass with his cock – but as he realized that it was indeed happening, his thrusts become harder, rougher…

If someone told Nira she was being fucked with a dagger, she would have believed because it was impossible for a cock to be hurting that much – but it was – she slowly felt herself growing more and more dizzy and wondered if blissful darkness was ready to take her – when a vicious slap brought her to reality.

It was Tarun. His cock, covered in blood and filth was already erect. The man that she once thought to be a good person got hard just by WATCHING her and her sisters get assraped. Somehow this made her despise him even more – but not as much as the fact that he pushed his soiled dick against her lips.

“Suck me, cunt!” he barked.

Nira turned her face away as he pushed his cock forward, disgusted, and the slimy, foul shaft drew of line foulness across her cheek. “No!” She proclaimed. “Anything you put in my mouth you’re losing, you bastard!”

Someone grabbed her hair viciously, twisting her head around until she was staring to Skyvus’s gray, lifeless eyes. “Oh, we can’t have that, whore priestess. No, we can’t.” He chuckled. “You’re a strong one, aren’t you? I can actually admire what you did here, after a fashion. It must have taken some real belief in Ariadna to pull it off – but she’s gone, and you’re mine now, and that strength will do nothing but cause you suffering until you learn to forsake it.” He grinned. “I don’t doubt you’d bite, and I think you’d laugh in the face of any threat that I could make…”

He paused. “To you.”

Then he released her hair, letting her head sag, but despite the pain in her ass, a flash of terror caused her to yank her head back up, to follow Skyvus as he walked over to Yra and lifting her sagging, screaming head by the blonde hair. “If you were to bite, well – I think I would have to take precautions. Maybe remove all of these sluts’ teeth. Can’t have them causing trouble during their penance, now can we?” He chuckled. “Of course, with no teeth to worry about, who could blame some of the men if they got carried away? You could stay buried in the throat of one of these whores forever. You could even forget…” He grabbed onto Yra’s throat and squeezed.

Watching the young priestesses eyes bulge as she was strangled made Nira instinctively thrash in her bonds, much to the delight of the man raping her from behind. “Leave her alone! Leave her alone you bastard!”

Skyvus stared at her for about ten seconds while she screamed before he released her neck and hair at the same time, letting her gasp in a trio of breaths before she started to scream again. “…that whores need air, too,” he finished as if nothing had happened. “So maybe you should think twice before threatening one of the cocks you exist to serve now – you never know what could happen.” He turned and backhanded Kara across the face to get her attention. “That goes for you too, cunt. I know your type. You wouldn’t ask me to piss on you if you were on fire, but you wouldn’t condemn your sister to die choking on a thick cock, either, would you?”

He strode back over to Nira, kneeling to look her right in the eyes. “And you killed the man’s son. I think the least you own him is a nice cock sucking. So open your fucking mouth, or I’ll start yanking teeth.”

Tears of frustration and helplessness rolling down Nira’s gorgeous face, she opened her mouth. Tarun wasted no time, thrust his filthy dick into her mouth, scraping himself clean on her lips and tongue. She could taste the cum, the blood, the sweat, and fouler things staining his cock, the first cock to have raped her, and it made her retch. Not that that stopped the man. He held her head in both hands, groaning with pleasure as he used her face to masturbate, grinding it along his cock, cleaning himself up with her. Soon, to her disgust, the taste became more bearable, and the knowledge that she had actually sucked the mess off of him made her stomach turn.

The whole thing was made harder by the man in her ass beginning to thrust harder and harder, the pain sharpening as he twisted his body to rape into her from new angles, stretching her further. Thudding slaps shook her body, making her tits jiggle as he slapped her ass with every other thrust, and each time he slammed into her she shifted forward, and Turan’s cock brushed against the back of her throat, making her gag. It was almost a relief when he came, disgusting as it was to feel the warmth spreading through her ravaged ass, but at least it meant a moment of relief.

Turan was starting to get more violent with her face, his cock growing stiffer in her mouth, and she braced for what she knew was coming. She had never done this, never taken a man in her mouth, never tasted cum. Once, when she was younger, before she had started down the road to becoming a priestess, she had played around with a boy she fancied. She had put her hand down his pants, stroked his length. It had made her feel powerful to make him grow hard in her hands, and eventually cum. She didn’t feel powerful now as a man old enough to be her father prepared to cum in her mouth.

But Skyvus stopped him. “Turan, wait,” he said, a malicious chime to his voice. “Pull out. Cum here – I think you’re going to like this.” The man did, groaning, and Nira was left confused. She couldn’t turn in the stock enough to see what Skyvus was talking about, but the idea that he was showing her any mercy was laughable – whatever he had in mind had to be worse still than letting her taste his cum.

Skyvus look out at the room, taking in the rapes and smiling. “Who wants to fuck this bitch next?”

Over and over, the rapes continued. One after the other, the four priestesses in the crowd were reduced to cum-covered husks of their former selves. Even Kara, feisty as she was, had long since dropped fighting and instead hung limply from her stockade, only moving when one of the men moved her – the fight literally fucked out of her. Cum poured out of their pussies and asses, covered their asses and backs, and painted their faces. All the men could see the cum filling their mouths, pooling under their slack tongues and in their cheeks, too exhausted to spit or swallow any longer.

On the raised platform, Nira could see all of this. She had been treated at least as brutally as the others. The paper sealing her cunt was hanging half off of her at this point, but she still hadn’t been fucked in that hole – she was still at least technically a virgin. Her ass, however, had been fucked half a hundred times by now, and her mouth put to nearly as severe of use. Turan had been up here to fuck her at least four times, that she noted. Her legs, her ass, everything was numb. She couldn’t have stood if her life depended on it – only the stockade kept her from lying on the dirty, cum-covered floor. But compared to the other girls, she was all but clean. Her face, her ass, her body, and her red, swollen asshole didn’t leak the fluids of the angry horde of villagers. She had stopped thinking about that hours ago, but the evidence was clear as day.

Time no longer held any meaning to Nira. Although she’d couldn’t have been in this nightmare for a full day yet, it felt as if she’d been being raped her entire life. She’d been forced to watch as her already broken friends were abused even further, breaking down – and knowing that this was her fault. Yra and Kara, for the most part, still seemed aware of what was going on, of what was being done to them, but they seemed numb to it, barely moving. Anna had been begging every time her mouth was free, perhaps trying to ingratiate herself to the villagers. It wasn’t working. She had stopped talking some hours before. Lyn, however – she was the worst. As Nira watched, it seemed like the kind-hearted, beautiful priestess’s mind shattered completely beneath the abuse. Her body reacted to what was being done to her – screaming and moaning when appropriate – but her eyes seemed hauntingly vacant to Nira.

Over the hours, the crowd had thinned. The girls were getting a bit disgusting for most of the men, and only the angriest or the most hateful stayed to continue abusing them. And then, Skyvus walked in front of her. “I think we’re about done here,” he said smiling. “Just one more thing.” And he pulled out her mask.

Nira stared blankly at it, unsure what she saw for several seconds. Then her eyes went wide as she realized what she was looking at. Ariadna’s priesthood wore masks to conceal their identities, part of the philosophy about fate being a higher power. The mask was a sign of their connection to their goddess – and Skyvus had filled it with cum. The men who hadn’t been cumming in her had instead been cumming into her mask. It was filled with the foul stuff, profaning it. She stared at it, horrified.

“Figured you’d want this back,” he said. Then he pressed the mask against Nira’s face. Cum poured down her face in a sheet, instantly blinding her, covering her mouth, nose, eyes. Plenty poured into her mouth. It was all she could taste, all she could smell, all that she could feel… and it felt disgusting. She was covered completely in the filth of her rapists. It would have been bad enough if it just was pouring down her face, but instead, the mask trapped most of it against her face, the holy proof of her priesthood now aiding in her desecration.

“And now, whore?” Skyvus sneered as hooked the mask in place, holding it to her face until someone took it off her. “Now your body belongs to Karn.” He walked around behind her, holding his prick as he lined himself up with her helpless snatch and drove forward. The paper covering her pussy depressed, then ripped, and then gave out altogether, and he pushed through it, and into her. Her virginity resisting him for a single instant before it broke just the way the paper seal had, leading to a bubbling cry of pain from Nira through the cum covering her mouth. The thickness of his cock stretched the tight walls of her pussy, and despite hours of being fucked, there was no wetness to her pussy at all, making it hurt even worse. His fingers dug into the soft flesh of her tits as he leaned forward and grabbed them, using them for leverage as he bucked his hips forward and buried a bit more of his hard cock into her.

Nira could barely see through her cum crusted eyes, but she knew she was crying. Her last hole. Her last single bit of purity – ripped away from her.

“Worthless fucking priestess of a whore goddess,” Skyvus snarled in her ear as he finished hilting his cock into her. He laughed as he fucked her, enjoying the feeling of her hot cunt clenching around him. Skyvus fucked her harder, squeezing her tits hard enough that they bulged between her fingers, drawing fresh cries of agony from her lips and making her cunt squeeze him even tighter. He drew back and slammed his cock forward again, forcing her body to accept him as he rammed in and out. This was great for him – but he wanted to make sure she remembered it all too.

“You’re mine now, Nira,” he snarled. “There aren’t enough of you fucking whores to go around – not enough to go through Tabharos and be shared around. But you – I caught you myself. I would get to pick any of you,” he mocked her as he raped her. “The gold-haired bitch over there is tempting – but I think you’re the prettiest one.”

Nira replied with only sobs and gasps as her bleeding pussy was fucked, and the priest continued. “The rest of these bitches can get knocked up to satisfy the village – but you? You’re mine.” She winced as Skyvus hammered into her harder, battering her body against the stockade with the force of his rape.

Eager to drop his first load into her, Skyvus dropped his hands down to Nira’s hips, gripping her firmly as he picked up his pace. If she thought he had been rough before, it was nothing compared to now – fucking her harder and harder, making her tits wobble and shake. With a heavy grunt, his body tensed and his cock twitched inside the tight grip of her cunt, blasting it with a hot load of his jizz. “Take it, cunt. You belong to me now!” By the time he finished draining his balls into her, Nira was completely limp in her bonds. He had fucked her into unconsciousness, finally pushing her over the line into the darkness.

Skyvus laughed. “That’ll do. You’ve had your fun, boys,” he told the remaining villagers. Turan was still there, staring at Nira with hatred and satisfaction on his face. “Everyone out. I let you all thoroughly sample our newest converts, and I hope you’re all satisfied. Starting tomorrow, if you want to come by, I’m sure these sluts would be pleased to give you their blessings on behalf of Karn – but there will be a fee. I think you’ll find it more than fair, given how sexy these whores are. But now? They need some rest.”

The men filling the temple seemed reluctant to leave, but eventually, they filed out. Turan left last of all, pausing to slap each priestess on their tits on the way out. Skyvus was left alone with the raped priestesses. The five girls hung from their stockades, bodies covered in drying spunk and sweat. He was certain even if he set them free, they wouldn’t be able to stand, much less escape – they would just collapse to the dirty ground to fall into the thick pool of jizz that had gathered beneath them throughout their gangrapes. He looked at each one after the other, unable to keep a proud grin off his face. Five captured priestesses, a damning blow to the reputation of Ariadna’s church, and a new whore for himself. Not bad for a few days of work. Not at all.

Skyvus whistled as he left to get some well-deserved sleep. He was so pleased – and satisfied – that he was even going to give Sera a break for the night. Now that he had Nira, he was looking forward to never needing to stick his dick in that used up bitch again.

“Wake up,” the voice said.

Nira groaned. Why couldn’t they just leave her alone? Why couldn’t they just let her sleep?

“Wake up, wake up!” The voice said again, insistent. It wasn’t a man’s voice – a woman? What woman would be here, after what had happened to her? Her eyes were crusted shut, she couldn’t see anything, but she was pretty sure the mask was off her face. Everything still hurt, and she could still feel the cum inside her, disgusting, squirming in her.

A wet cloth wiped over her eyes, scrubbing the cum off her face, letting her open her eyes. The five other priestesses were on the ground, sitting – to the side to avoid the disgusting floor. They were stretching – or at least Yra and Anna were. Kara and another girl were helping Lyn up to her feet, the poor, beautiful girl barely seeming to be awake even with her eyes open. Nira recognized the girl – she had caught glimpses of her. Her name was Sera, she thought – one of the slaves of the temple here. Another former priestess.

“Shhh,” the voice said again. “Don’t speak… don’t make a sound. The priests of Karn aren’t far. I’m untying you right now…” Nira felt the clasps around her hands loosed and then open entirely, and she almost fell to the ground. Strong arms caught her, holding her up. She whimpered as the pain of trying to stand on her sore legs and ravaged ass burned at her. “It’s ok. It’s ok,” the voice said. “Hush – it’s alright now…”

She turned her face and saw her rescuer. She recognized her. “You…” she whispered. “You were watching the parade…”

“Hush now,” the blonde traveler said.

She was mostly covered by her dark cloak, but Nira could see the beautiful face peeking out from the shadows beneath the hood. She stepped away, flicking over to the door, silent as a ghost, peering out. “Alright. The coast is clear. Can you walk?” she whispered.

Nira nodded. Everything hurt, but she was determined. There was a way to escape, and Nira was not going to stay here if there was the slightest hope of running.

The stranger nodded back. “Let’s go,” she whispered.

One by one, the stranger handed the girls black cloaks, just like her own – rough, dark traveling cloth, heavy to keep in the warmth, treated to keep off the rain. Together, the seven women sneaked through the darkness, out of the temple, and down an empty road. There was no moon in the sky – in the hours just before dawn, the night was black any darkness she had ever known. The lights in some of the houses were still on, or on early. Nira didn’t even look at them. Couldn’t look at them. After what they had done to her and her sisters, or been willing to let happen – this village could burn to the ground for all she cared.

Outside of town, a wagon awaited. Six packs waited inside of it, along with three barrels filled with produce heading to market. The farmer and his wife sat at the front of the wagon, nodding at the nearly naked girls with a sympathetic glance as the stranger helped them one by one into the wagon. “There’s some gold, some food, clothing in the bags,” she said. Now that they were out of the temple, and she didn’t need to whisper anymore, Nira could hear the almost musical beauty to her voice. “Sam and Molly here will take you as far as Polanthis. From there, you should be able to start new lives, or get passage to somewhere else.”

Nira looked through her bag and found what she promised. Food, waterskins, clothing… and a surprisingly heavy coin purse. She looked up, startled. “Who – who are you? Why are you doing this?”

“I just want to help,” she said. “It’s not fair what happened to you. You didn’t deserve any of this. I’m just setting things right.”

The two farmers swirled the reins, sending the horses into motion. Nira could scarcely believe how quickly life had changed. In two days, she had gone from trying to run a temple of a goddess she worshipped with the goddess already gone, to being exposed as a fraud, to becoming a slave of the temple of Karn – and now, abruptly, to being free, given money, and leaving the town she had lived in all her life. It was all changing so fast – she felt like her head was spinning. The stranger was disappearing in the distance. “You never told me your name!” she called back after her.

She turned back. “You can call me Ari,” the stranger answered, continuing to walk away.

A minute later, the road rounded a bend in the road, and she lost sign of the woman who had saved them.

4 thoughts on “Chapter 4 – The Liar

  1. I refer to these as reactions rather than reviews, because generally I’m just giving my feelings on the story and the characters and stuff like that, but for this chapter, this is kind of a review, in that I do have a criticism here. I’m going to put this right up front, because I didn’t dislike the chapter at all, and I don’t want to be like Turan and leave a bad taste in your mouth.

    When the priestesses are brought to the temple of Karn, they’re followed by a mob throwing rocks, rotten fruit and whatnot at them. When they reach the temple, the story says:

    Horrible as it was, the humiliated priestess felt a moment of relief as she entered the temple of the hated Karn and out of the sight of the jeering crowd that had followed her.

    Five villagers are mentioned following them in, one for each priestess. When the villagers hesitate…

    For a moment, seeing the villagers look at each other with uncertainty, Nira felt hope rising in her. Maybe not all was lost, maybe Skyvus’ power and influence didn’t reach as far as he thought and hopes. Apparently, it was one thing to hurl insults or even rotten fruit at the condemned priestesses when within the anonymity of the crowd, and this was something else.

    Again, this indicates that the crowd doesn’t follow them into the temple. However, when the rape scene begins…

    The mob surged forward, and Nira and the other four priestesses began to scream as dozens of hands raked over their bodies.

    So did the crowd follow them in after a few minutes, or is something else going on? I realize the definition of a mob is kind of vague, but the “dozens of hands” thing is harder to figure out. The term “angry horde of villagers” is used later as well, along with other language which seems to suggest far more people (“the men filling the temple”, etc.).

    There is also a thing that happens during Turan’s rape of Nira where the story shifts from its usual past tense to the present tense several times. Ok, done with anything remotely critical now. On with our usual show! 🙂

    Well it looks like those first three chapters formed sort of a story arc, and now we begin a new one. I thought at first that Nira was going to be something of an anti-heroine, a con woman who just happened to be using the priestess thing as her newest angle, but it turns out she’s completely devout and was just doing it to try and restore faith in Ariadna. Turan’s also given a more sympathetic development than your rapists generally are, with his anger being misguided and going way too far, but as a vengeful, grieving father, it’s understandable. Granted, he’s portrayed as pretty evil by the end, but it was a more nuanced start than these characters usually get.

    Actually, I did find Nira’s semi-academic question about the men of the village kind of amusing, as it’s something I’ve thought before while reading other stories (“Really? All of them are going to do this?”). It’s much easier to comprehend in a location like the Paradisium, which naturally attracts some pretty vile people, but this was just a random sampling of guys.

    Unless of course it wasn’t random, and Skyvus chose men he felt had the right stuff for the job. Or this has to do with Karn’s influence inside the temple (like the soldiers who raided Ariadna’s temple) or something. I suppose it could also have to do with the society in general, as rape may be far more normalized, but Nira’s thoughts seem to indicate that this isn’t the case.

    Skyvus keeps getting described as snakelike, and at first I was planning to make a joke about how all the upstanding, moral snakes of the world would object to that comparison (including my ball python, who is less than three feet from me as I write this), but then I realized that Karn’s servants are furies, which from what I remember seem to have been described as snake people, and that the furies are the empowered souls of Karn’s followers, likely including his priests, so for all I know Skyvus could be becoming more and more snakelike as he fits more and more into the mold of a future fury. Either way, he’s pretty instantly loathsome, especially given that he causes the death of Turan’s son and then redirects the anger toward Nira and the other four priestesses, and of course what he does during the rape scene. Do you have any idea how bad you have to be for me to go “among all the things happening during the mass rape scene, this guy stood out as especially bad”?

    “So… we can strip them?” one villager asked. “Really?”

    I’ll take “Questions That Never Lead Anywhere Good” for $400, Alex.

    I’ve mentioned mindbreak is really upsetting, so it won’t surprise you that I felt the worst for Lyn and how badly she seems to have been damaged. She’s a minor character and all (the story index page has no “this character is important” art for her like it has for Nira 😉 ), but I hope she gets better. She’s able to walk and get in the carriage at least.

    And, of course, when you mentioned her in the crowd, I figured the stranger would be Ariadna. I did chuckle a bit at the fact that her disguise name is just “Ari”, but I realize you needed the audience to know who that was, so the disguise name had to act as a clue.

    Something tells me we haven’t seen the last of Skyvus either, so I’ll keep an eye out for him in future chapters! 🙂


  2. Criticism is always welcome, especially when its well-intentioned. Even meanspirited criticism is useful, sometimes… and this certainly isn’t that type. I will look for times I slip into present tense here – I have largely broken myself of that habit, but it used to be a much better problem for me.

    Re: the mob

    The idea was that they sort of watched and then began crowding in once they realized it really was ok. They hung back, hesitant, but eventually got into the spirit of it.

    “I thought at first that Nira was going to be something of an anti-heroine, a con woman who just happened to be using the priestess thing as her newest angle, but it turns out she’s completely devout and was just doing it to try and restore faith in Ariadna.”

    I could have gone that way, but it wouldn’t make a ton of sense given her role in the rest of the story. Nira is one of the faithful, and she badly wants to keep that faith alive in others, give them something to believe in. If Ariadna can’t give a miracle at the moment, she will manufacture one for her.

    It doesn’t work, but her intention wasn’t monstrous.

    “Granted, he’s portrayed as pretty evil by the end, but it was a more nuanced start than these characters usually get.”
    “Actually, I did find Nira’s semi-academic question about the men of the village kind of amusing,”
    “Or this has to do with Karn’s influence inside the temple”

    There IS a metaphysics element to this that gets discussed a little bit later in the story, so I’ll leave this alone for now. Just know for now it has to do with the LitV setting and humanity’s role in it, and we can discuss it more after the story is done.

    For Turan, his backstory is meant to mark him as sympathetic to a point. He is obvious at an 11 where he should probably be at like an 8, but… that might not be ENTIRELY his fault. The rest of his bad decisions are rage and grief and lots and lots of alcohol.

    “Skyvus keeps getting described as snakelike”

    It’s less a matter of him ACTUALLY gaining more snake-features, as Furies being snakelike meaning that stereotypes and associations for his priests tend towards reptilian and snake-like. I personally have no issue with snakes, but priests of Ariadna tend to 🙂

    “I’ve mentioned mindbreak is really upsetting, so it won’t surprise you that I felt the worst for Lyn and how badly she seems to have been damaged. She’s a minor character and all (the story index page has no “this character is important” art for her like it has for Nira 😉 ), but I hope she gets better. She’s able to walk and get in the carriage at least.”

    Lyn is not really going to appear again except in a montage towards the end, but she is going to fine. Given a few weeks/months/years to recover in safety, she will be fine… and she is going to be safe inside Raegis soon, where the priests of Karn won’t dare come after her. And she lived happily ever after.

    “And, of course, when you mentioned her in the crowd, I figured the stranger would be Ariadna. I did chuckle a bit at the fact that her disguise name is just “Ari”, but I realize you needed the audience to know who that was, so the disguise name had to act as a clue.”

    Yeah, it is supposed to be exactly 0% of a secret to the reader, but no one expects that Ariadna is still alive so subtlety to people in the world isn’t all that important to her.


  3. “It’s less a matter of him ACTUALLY gaining more snake-features, as Furies being snakelike meaning that stereotypes and associations for his priests tend towards reptilian and snake-like. I personally have no issue with snakes, but priests of Ariadna tend to”

    Just to be clear I wasn’t really about to get offended on behalf of all snakes or anything. I like the animals, but I can guarantee I’ve used snake comparisons for villains before (just like I’ve written giant bug monsters in spite of liking bugs…or because of liking bugs). It was always going to be a joke, I just dropped it when I thought about how the magic might work. It is interesting to think of what you said there, though, that snakes may have a negative connotation and cultural associations because of Karn’s furies.

    Side note: “Karn and the Furies” would be a good name for a rock band.


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