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Hyperlinks in the text are intended as supplemental material, discussing elements of the science behind the science fiction. They are not intended as required reading for the story. Hyperlinks will be provided at the point in the story where it comes up, but all the links will also be collected at the bottom of the post for easy reading.
Maldoror, Outer Reaches
5 years after the loss of the Midgar-6
Amara awoke from her nightmares with a jerk, breathing hard, and as always when she first woke she felt like the air was thick and she was suffocating. As the clarity of consciousness slowly settled down on her once again, that faded… but the terror and distress which had harrowed her nerves refused to leave.
She normally lay recumbent on a small cot in a private room that would have just barely counted as a tiny office or cubicle back on Earth, but she had rolled off at some point in the night and was now resting her head against the cornice which lined the bottom of all the walls within the Death of Hope. Her eyes stared upwards into the semi-darkness, beholding the vaguely hexagonal architecture of the roof that made it seem like she existed within some gigantic beehive. The former Captain of the Midgar-6 gritted her teeth so hard that it looked like she was suffering through some kind of spasm and was worried about biting her tongue, grimacing as if trying to squeeze the anxiety from out of her pores.
It wasn’t working. No matter what she did the tension refused to leave her. Tears slipped out of her eyes as she squeezed her arms around herself. This was the 8th time she had been woken by her nightmares in the last 10 days. This was bad… no, this was catastrophic. She had only barely managed to confine the panic and nightmares into the darkest parts of her innermost self for years, but now they were surfacing as harrowing night terrors. Not even physical exhaustion was enough to prevent her fears from emerging in the dead of night, where they could take her by surprise, where she could mount no defenses. The days were still survivable but for how long? Amara wondered if her mind was going. Was this the utmost that her mind and body could take? And what if they happened on a night she was in Sarcand’s bed?
It had been five years. Five years of misery and torment and humiliation at the hands of the Kthid conquerer who had destroyed her entire life. Huntmaster Sarcand had raped the spirit out of her and it felt like he wasn’t even particularly trying… she had spent months in isolation in this room where the only face she saw was him. Back then the door hadn’t opened… it was just a simple, almost featureless room with no windows, no openings of any kind save for a wall that could open into a door, and a toilet unit that seemed configured for humans. It didn’t take long to figure out that this must have been Miranda’s chambers… for why else would the Kthid have a ready bathroom for her?
She had a metal collar around her neck, fastened tightly, and she could find no way to remove it… whatever clasp existed to force must be internal. The collar, she’d quickly learned, could shock her whenever she spoke… but it didn’t work on just any noise. It worked on the sound of her voice – and on human speech. If it detected Amara’s voice forming coherent words, it would shock her. But screams – such as the ones she had made most times when she was shocked – were fine. It also didn’t work every time she spoke… only when she said certain things. It wasn’t training her to be silent – it was training her to forget how to speak without permission, to forget to speak things that displeased her master.
The only distinguishing feature of the room was the screens set firmly into every wall, each quite large. One of the screens always displayed the same thing – a picture of her and her sister, a comparison of their bodies and features… one that firmly pointed out Amara’s inadequacies. The rest of them showed her pornography… mostly videos of her crew or her colonists being raped and bred by oceans of Kthid warriors. The screens were pictured, Amara discovered, so that wherever she turned her eyes in the room, she was looking at a scene out of a nightmare. There was even a screen built into the floor, and two on the ceiling.
Here, in the darkness of space, she had had no idea how much time was passing. What she would later find out was weeks had stretched out into infinite eons. Once in a while, Sarcand would arrive to rape her, usually without speaking to her… enjoying how she was shocked whenever she asked questions or threatened him. Only her pathetic pleading and begging were permitted, but they did nothing to prevent the vicious fucking, and then the abandonment that came afterward.
Eventually, Amara would try to sleep, but when she did, the videos on the walls would change. Now they showed pictures of her and her command crew from the ship records… wearing clothes, smiling, working. Horrible, discordant sounds would fill the room, a cacophony of loud, horrifying noises. Amara would hear screams, metal clanging, and something that sounded like bulwarks tearing apart and heavy collisions… and it wasn’t going to stop. The sound would go on all night until Amara started to scream to herself, begging it to stop – and then resorting to incoherent noises when the collar shocked her after each identifiable word begging for mercy.
Occasionally the naked, raped women would reappear on the screens, and when they did the awful noises would stop. Each time, Amara would babble stupidly in gratitude… but soon they would be gone again, and the other, non-degrading images and abusive noise would return. By morning, Amara would be a mess. She hadn’t slept, crying all night. She only knew it was morning because the raped women came back, and they stayed.
Eventually, Sarcand had begun training her to say the things he wanted… only the things he wanted. “Humans exist to be raped,” she would say. “I wish every human could be Kthid fuckmeat. It is all we deserve. Maybe if other people had raped me and trained me to serve earlier, I would be better prepared for my master.” Then the things she said would be repeated back to her on the screens along with the horrible images. Sometimes, it was exactly what she had said. Sometimes it was a remixed version of the words, combining them to make something she had never admitted. “I wish my father had raped me. I wish I could have raped my sister for you.” Usually, he made her say things that were false. Sometimes he made her say things that were true. That was the worst part… when combined with the recordings of things she had said, things she had never said, and lies she had told, over time and lack of sleep she began to lose track of which was which.
At night, the noises came back, and Amara couldn’t sleep. She found herself making wordless screams at the colonists and her crew, wishing that she could watch them be raped on the video so that she wouldn’t have to suffer and could sleep. She tried to sleep during the “day”, of course, but the mere act of trying to sleep made the bad videos come back instead, and the noises resume. She was lucky if she got more than an hour or two of sleep in a night, more passing out than sleeping.
Amara didn’t know how long she’d lasted before she gave in. She had kept telling herself that she had to last a little bit longer, had to make it believable… but in the end, she took the drugs that Sarcand offered her. The noises didn’t stop… only the drugs he gave her allowed her to sleep. Amara took the pills, swallowed them, and finally had her first good night of sleep as she nodded off to the chorus of horrible noises, disappearing into blessed, desperately needed sleep.
Sarcand had kept Amara in the room for, as it turned out, three months. He only allowed her to sleep while drugged, learning that sleep was a gift to be enjoyed, not something she was allowed to do herself. In the end, even when the noise was taken away, she couldn’t help but be absurdly grateful each and every time he let her sleep… and over the next year, he did the same for food, for water, for comfort, and eventually even for his company… teaching her that the only thing worse than being raped by him was being alone. He taught her that this wasn’t her fault, that this was happening because humanity was destined for this… to join their conquerors and spend out their gene pool as a harem.
Amara wasn’t sure that, by the end of it, she could fully disagree.
Five years later, she held onto those lessons. As his Heitera, she always had to act obsequious and fawnish towards his torment. Every act of cruelty she had to take with a smile, being a loyal slave of the Kthid Imperium. All of that was bad enough… but it was not this which had caused her current critical crisis. Nor even the innumerable desecrations that she had seen befall the colonists that she’d sworn to protect, or her crew. It was something else entirely.
The red-haired human curved into the fetal position, hugging her legs for warmth, craving just something to support herself against. For right now she had her own chamber… the room that she had by the grace of her master Sarcand, to clean herself and beautify herself for his desires. Ironclad discipline told her that she needed to let go of this hold immediately. If Sarcand were to enter this room at present and see her pitiful position, or if he reviewed the cameras that no doubt watched her, then he would laugh and magnify her daily torment tenfold. A Heitera – as she was oftentimes reminded – only existed for the amusement of their Masters. Slip up once, lose an ounce of dignity, an iota of your feminine allure, a simple crack in your posture or a blemish upon your face, and you could be done for, doomed, and as good as dead. It was a constant struggle between outwardly appearance and the true condition of the heart, a losing cause that could only be stymied but never fully halted. She had seen it happen many times over the years. Sometimes the stalking doom seemed to be her only companion. Worst of all was that she knew she had an ace card that she could play, something about her that would regain his interest… and every day she feared she might use it. If Amara could scrub the secret of what she had done on the Mistrunner from her mind so she couldn’t speak of it, she would have… but instead it was only her will that restrained it, and that alone she would not let go of.
But just a brief glimmer had been enough to crack the walls she had erected to safeguard her sanity. Amidst all this darkness and hopeless gloom, there was only one thing that could reduce her to this pitiful wreck… a ghost that haunted the corridors of the ship. Which haunted her nightmares…
It had occurred about two weeks ago, on the day when Amara accompanied Sarcand back to what was left of the Midgar-6.
The Death of Hope was what the Kthid called an Eclipse-class battleship, and it was almost unthinkably large on the inside… but even so more than 800,000 colonists as prisoners would tax its abilities to keep them. For that reason, remnants of the former colony ship were still being towed along… the cryogenic decks and the recovery chambers for the hopeful colonists. In this state the vessel had traveled for years, bringing its valuable cargo of stolen wombs back to the Kthid’s homeworld of Maldoror. The majority of the captured Humans and Sethis still resided within this containment… Only the most exceptional of them had gotten the attention of one of the Kthid to be claimed for their exclusive use. These favored concubine slaves – called the Heitera – belonged only to that warrior, and would be allowed to accompany him back to the Death of Hope. However, that position was only available for a precious few, and it involved competition with not only the other colonists but all of the other alien women who existed within the Huntmaster’s domain to earn, and keep that position.
The competition was stiff.
As the shuttle landed and Amara stepped out into the cargo bay, the concentrated stench of sex, sweat, and raw Kthid aggression assaulted her nostrils. It was a malodorous stench that slavery had forced her to become accustomed to, but here it permeated the air with such thickness that even she could not shake it.
She stalked in Sarcand’s shadow as he headed deeper into the bowels of the ship, following meekly behind her master as a good slave ought. For clothing, she only wore the decorative piercings and chains that the Huntmaster preferred for ornamentation and was otherwise treading stark naked. The jewelry served perfectly to underscore the fact that she was merely a possession of his, some regalia to signify his status. Amara was not supposed to speak, to act, or to do anything at all: she was here mostly as a trophy to him. He only wanted her to see what he had done to those under her protection.
Even though the former Captain kept her eyes straight ahead, she still beheld sights that rocked her spirit. It had been a year since she had last visited but things were still depressingly the same, except where they were even worse. This technological marvel of humanity, the seed that was supposed to pollinate a virgin world, had become a hellhole for the HEF and a bacchanal for the Kthid – a hive of sadistic alien lusts and a menagerie for them to go gallivanting through. Returning to that godforsaken vessel brought her nothing but existential pain to think about… but she was made to experience it anyway.
After the initial ship-wide orgy to commemorate Sarcand’s triumph, the female colonists had been divided up among the Kthid soldiers as loot. Sex was not merely a desire for procreation or a promiscuous urge to them, but in Amara’s experience with the soldiers it was a drive nearly indistinguishable from a desire to inflict suffering. They treated their slaves like spectacles and sources of entertainment. For the warrior caste Kthid, cruelty seemed almost to be a competition… groups of them reinforced one another, seeking to out-perform the others as the ship cruised through space. In some ways – even after 5 years had passed – it seemed like that devil-inspired orgy had not fully ended but merely abated, grown less popular, a side-show rather than the full attraction.
As they passed halls and corridors, they found many adjoining rooms still housing brutal gangbangs. Shouts and brutal thudding noises emanated from within. Gangs of the green-hued xenos were defiling the Terran women, usually in groups as seemed to be their custom with those who were not Heitera. Plenty of bellicose orgies were still happening out in the open as well, the warriors not bothering to pull them into privacy. Some of these groups of cruel warriors, younger ones as far as Amara could tell, had set up gladiatorial rings where women had to fight for the privilege of not being the one whom would get gang-raped senseless the very moment these battles ended. Amara saw engineers, scientists, doctors and other people of high learning be reduced into punching, scratching, hair-pulling pugilists who frantically scrambled around naked on the floor in a battle for survival. Without exception, they seemed like haggard, mad-eyed creatures. Years of Kthid enslavement had whipped every semblance of dignity and humanity out of many of them. Upon her first few return trips to this hull, there had still been colonists who shot Amara daggers of hate for her inability to protect them while in cryo-stasis. Now, barely anyone even looked at her anymore. The countless rapes had broken most of them so badly that even blame was an emotion rendered foreign.
Amara knew many of them. Among these fight-pits, she even beheld two colonists whom she knew to be loving wives to one another engaged in a chaotic, furious, no-mercy duel. Thronging Kthid heckled the pair of lesbian women while watching the high pace battle. Once, these two had dreamily concocted plans of raising a family on a newly founded world. Now they would be raising a family of a very different sort and had been pitted together as rivals for survival. Even the deepest bonds of partnership had been undone by these demon-hearted lizards, all the fine sensibilities of mankind extinguished under the yoke of their oppression.
Sarcand walked past, and Amara followed. The Heitera was never told why Sarcand did very much of anything. His designs had to be intuited by her as she went along, listening and observing. The Kthid language was almost impossible to be spoken correctly by a human mouth, but it was possible to learn, and Amara had learned it well on her long voyage, listening to even those Kthid without their translating jewelry as they walked, following Sarcand on his path as he made observations.
The very first stop they made on the ship was so routine that it didn’t provide her with any real relevant information she could use to divine the purpose of this visit… The Huntmaster had elected to stop by what to the Kthid might be called a Maternity Ward, though to human eyes it would best be described as an unfurnished mess hall where heavily gravid women lay in bondage all throughout its interiors. Any female confirmed as pregnant who had not been claimed as a Heitera was thrown in here for the duration of her unholy parturition. There were so many of them… it looked like piles of women laying in great heaps, often resting back-to-back for lack of any other support. Wherever Amara’s eyes scanned, she beheld bellies bloated like hills, bigger even than being nine-months pregnant with a human child. Many held onto these gargantuan humps with grimacing faces, pained by the inhuman fetuses which clawed and kicked against their wombs from within. Thankfully, bearing young for their conquerors was quick, only about 90 days… they matured quickly, both in and out of the womb, and thank any god that Humanity had ever created for that. Nurturing a Kthid child could be hellish, even worse than the process of conception.
Amara would know. During her enslavement, she had already delivered two.
The Huntmaster took reports from the local overseer. They gave figures concerning fertility, numbers of children birthed and the survivability among the hosts. Nothing among these figures proved to be out of the ordinary. As the overseer talked, a pair of women were screaming from down the halls, going through the birthing pangs of Kthid labor. The newborns would only be kept on the Midgar-6 for a few days or weeks as they were looked after by the medical staff before they were put into the care of Sarrl, just like Amara’s own offspring had been. Lineage was traced through the male Kthid pedigree, but any conquered female not taken as Heitera seemed to be considered disposable vessels, as though it was completely unimportant which womb they had come from.
Amara, perhaps strangely, had encountered more than one mother that, despite their trauma, objected to this separation from their newborns. They would beg and plead for the child to be brought back to them… not all of them, certainly, but a notable minority. Amara wished that she could say she completely didn’t understand… but she was more than a little conflicted herself. On one hand, bearing her rapist’s children was abhorrent. On the other… they were hers. And illogical as that might be, it didn’t stop her from feeling pangs when she thought of them.
Still, though she overlooked a sea of pained and haggard faces, Amara knew a horrible truth – that this was the best any of them were likely to experience while in captivity. An alien woman was never more valuable to the Kthid than while she nested their developing spawns. During this phase, they would not be too harshly raped, tortured, or suffer any evil thought that was of their malefactors’ design. This was not merely a medicinal necessity – it was a reflection of the fact that the Kthid fetus was worth more than all of their lives combined. It was here where the armies of the Huntmaster regrew their numbers, and that was sacrosanct even to the hostile aliens. No respect was granted to them save for the new life germinating within their wombs, but that was still a marked improvement on their usual treatment. With all this in mind, it was no surprise that many of the enslaved colonists started looking forward to being impregnated, even accounting for the shame and suffering that it brought them.
“Good. Good,” Huntmaster Sarcand said to the veterinarian here. “Have this whole batch tossed into cryosleep after they’re done birthing,” he ordered the overseer.
Almost imperceptibly, Amara cocked an eyebrow. That was the closest to a new guideline concerning the humans she had ever heard the Huntmaster speak. Her curiosity was enough to overwhelm even the disgust that she always felt that the word for the Kthid doctors to tend to their captives was the same as they would use to tend to livestock… something was changing. The Warlord turned to leave the room, striding purposefully without looking back at Amara. “Your thoughts, slave?” he said as he exited. “These women were all supposed to bear your Terran young and further your species. You were oathbound to ensure it. Now they are ours, and birth only children who will spread beneath the light of the Dark Star.”
Amara swallowed her disgust, smirked, made a coy countenance, and swiped a few strands of hair from out of her face. “So you keep reminding me, Master. It is as you say. They are conquered. We are conquered, brought into your hands. I fought to prevent it but now I am but one of them,” she replied in a tone that she hoped would humor his vainglory.
Sarcand, however, snorted. “Pathetic,” he growled once. Then he walked on, leaving Amara struggling to catch up.
They proceeded further into the Midgar-6 and entered the main chamber where all of the hibernation pods were housed in amphitheater-like rings extending up the walls. Gazing upon row upon row of those egg-shaped tubes, one could see that every one of them sported portholes that unveiled their innards. If these portholes were black, then the tube was vacant and inactivated. However, if an icy-blue luster glowed from these circular windows, then one knew that its freeze was engaged and that a hibernated life rested thoughtlessly therein.
Entering, Amara was taken aback with surprise. She gazed upwards so that the back of her head craned against her shoulder blades, quick-counting those tiny blue dots even as they reached the topmost level. A great quantity of them were engaged. Far more then she had ever seen before. The Kthid sometimes threw their victims back into the cryo-sleep for various purposes… if only just to save on food and supplies. However, so many fertile souls presently resting could only be at a given command from her Master.
The Kthid were preparing for something… and Amara could only imagine one thing it could be. They were nearing Maldoror – the dreaded Kthid homeworld. Or home system… even after five years of listening and hearing what they said of it, she still remained unclear if it was the name of the planet or the star. They appeared to use them interchangeably. It didn’t matter. After five years of tracking through ghoulish stars and carrying their sordidly used cargo, they were finally near.
The terrifying unknowns of Maldoror had long lingered in the back of her skull. What was its relationship to the Dark Star which the Kthid professed to worship? Even after all this time spent in their presence, she still did not have a solid idea of its properties or how it was thought of. The Kthid seemed to have no organized worship, no theological doctrines. Sarcand himself seemed dismissive of arguments advisers made to him regarding the “will” of the Dark Star. It seemed like some of their number worshiped it, but there was no organized cult that she had witnessed, nor other functionaries who dealt in things sacred. To Sarcand, the Dark Star seemed to merely be an utterance, an object of awe and an icon to swear before… not something to beseech for aid or guidance, more like some ultra-mundane super predator whom all Kthid feared more than a God proper. He seemed to treat it the way humans would treat a dragon on a family crest.
It was real enough, though. From her time on the Mistrunner, she had learned of its veracity by listening to the recordings of the doomed explored Talia Icarus, her voyage to it, and the destruction of her ship and crew that had occurred in its shadow. The Dark Star actually was some phenomena of nature whose existence had been previously unknown to man. Without those haunting tellings delivered by that damnable madwoman, Amara would likely have believed it merely to be a myth.
Another Kthid overseer was present here, one that Amara knew well over the last five years. Vrakash was the ship’s primary engineer, a healer and scientist that dealt in things mechanical as opposed to the biological. Amara had gathered enough to know that he was the highest-ranked engineer on the ship, the equivalent of Huntmaster for their caste, and one of Sarcand’s brothers. From listening, it seemed that the Kthid engineer had apparently been ordered to inspect the functionality and number of the hibernation pods. Sarcand stepped forward to hear his report, listening as his brother told him of the findings.
Amara listened too. Sometimes cryo-sleep tubes broke. They actually were really designed for only two uses at the maximum, once for first hibernation, and a second one in case of an emergency where the dweller had to be prematurely revived. If used beyond that, then errors, malfunctions and even full-on catastrophic breakdowns might occur. Cryogenic slumber was quite tricky that way… The human body could only be entombed in life-preserving ice and then thawed for so many times. However, according to the Overseer’s report, the number of relatively risk-free hibernation tubes still exceeded the number of slaves who had survived the journey and had not been taken as Heitera.
The former Captain wanted to cry to hear it. It wasn’t too many killed… but souls had been perishing, most succumbing to brutal birthing pangs, others to overeager Kthid. As usual, there was nothing Amara Black could do to stop it.
Sarcand inquired for further details, and his brother answered, but while this was happening Amara heard feminine screams emanating from a nearby rape blaring above their voices. Amara had long been confounded by how effortlessly the Kthid seemed able to hold a conversation while such outcries of hurt dominated the vicinity… until she learned the trick herself. Now they were like natural ambiance. Unusually curious due to the discovery of these well-stocked hibernation pods, the ex-Captain turned her attention to the horror happening over there.
“NO! NO! NO!” the voice heedlessly begged. Amara recognized that voice. It was Martina Barzola, the would-be vice-governess of the world they were intending to settle. Though she knew that it was unwise, and she would regret it, this familiarity drew her eye.
The statuesque Hispanic beauty was in the process of being pushed into one of those wide-opened pods. She had recently been violated, which was evident on her many-contusioned, sperm-besmirched body, and the thudding orgy going on all around her. However, even though she was enfeebled by having just been pounded into by an athletic specimen, the human still pleaded with her Kthid dominator. “Please, I’ll suck your cock better next time! I’ll bear your children! Please! Please, I birth strong Kthid babies! Please make me your Heitera! I be-” she begged before the Kthid slapped her across the face, jerking her head to the side so violently that her brain must have crashed against her skull.
The Kthid clearly wasn’t having it. More than merely what she offered was required for one of the space demons to ever consider making a woman his Heitera. For all of her voluptuous beauty, it worked against her – Martina had been almost permanently pregnant since she had been pulled from her pod, and no warrior wanted to make a Heitera that was carrying another’s child. With the would-be governess thus beaten, he strong-armed her into the pod. Amazingly, she was still struggling as it happened, though feebly as if done by dazed instinct.
The woman acted as if being made the extraterrestrial’s permanent slave was preferable to being frozen again. What could cause such desperation? Was cryogenic sleep truly even worse than being made a Kthid’s rape-victim? Where did the missing detail in her understanding lie? It took a moment for Amara to understand… the anesthesia. The pods were only intended for two uses. The pain-numbing features… they were surely offline if the pods were in regular use. Being thawed with no drugs to dull your pain receptors must be a devastating experience. The higher functions of the brain were still largely inactive as the process occurred, but even though no conscious thought was possible, the sensations could still hit like a floodgate while the victim was in a purely emotive state, with no consideration to articulate or create meaning as to why she suffered. She would swim in pain blind, like an insentient animal… and it would seem to go on for a disconcertingly long time. All of those numb body parts would open themselves up for sensations again and all that they would be broadcasting was unbridled, excruciating pain. Not to mention, the very second after it ended, she would most likely find herself being ripped out from her hibernation pod to be raped by the Kthid again.
That was the pain-cycle of many of these colonists. Rape, pregnancy, cryosleep. Rape, pregnancy, cryosleep. Rape, pregnancy, cryosleep. All happening in a years-long journey across the sidereal stars… and none of this was to mention the other malefactions that could befall a woman as she was being untombed. Brain damage was usually only possible in rare cases, but she had to assume that the Kthid were not likely to be as careful as her own doctors had been. Clearly, with so many victims as their loot the Kthid didn’t care all that much about such issues like that as long as they were still able to give birth to their progeny.
As Amara thought this through, Martinez was forced into that egg-shaped device, her wailing ending with the closing of its frontal door. Just another scream ended by the callousness of the Kthid. There were still plenty of humans in the vicinity to rape, and as the pod began to freeze the fallen governess solid her assailant did just that. Whatever happened, it seemed like the spacefaring predators’ defilements never ceased being committed on a massive scale.
Sarcand finished his discussions with his brother and began walking again, and Amara was forced to follow, trekking in that monster’s dismal wake. It seemed to her that he was headed back towards the shuttle which had taken them here and Amara did not expect another diversion, but unexpectedly, Sarcand turned into another room. Amara heard the sickly sound of one of the stunning lashers impacting against flesh before she had even entered, her stomach clenching as she saw who suffered.
“I can’t believe you, worthless bitch!” Charnametros snarled as he flailed his arm forward again, swatting that multi-corded whip of sparking metal against Anna’s already reddened backside.
“Eeeyyia!” The colony ship’s chief medical officer screamed. The outcry seemed enervated, not strong enough to fully articulate the pain she was going through. Her master, the youngest warrior on the ship, didn’t seem concerned… he ferociously continued to beat her, even ignoring the redheaded human slave girl – doubtless another colonist plucked from their treasure horde for the occasion – kneeling before him and sucking on his cock while he worked. Every part of her body seemed to have been beaten, crimson with the effort, but there was scarcely a mark on the girl. This was one of Sarcand’s soldier’s favorite tools… metal leashes with something similar to vulcanized rubber coating them that unleashed a brutal, stunning electrical charge on hit. The Kthid could still put enough force behind them to break bones if they really tried, but they were flexible enough that they rarely caused injury otherwise, even so much as welted skin… keeping their slaves pretty.
The young Kthid warrior had evidently taken full advantage of that, battering his Heitera so thoroughly that her lungs could no longer produce the appropriate sounds to express her pain. The raven-haired doctor hung from a chain suspended from the ceiling, her toes dangling above the ground. Anna’s head was limp, craned downwards so that her locks partly obscured her visage. Her once short hair had grown out to fit her master’s tastes, as was common… The Kthid, as a rule, seemed to prefer long hair. Sarcand certainly did… Amara’s own had grown into a long even mane down to the small of her back. Amara watched as one of her best friends and fellow officers was beaten, trying to swallow the urge to do something to help her… the only such something she could do was… dangerous to even consider. Such scenes of punishment were not unusual onboard the Death of Hope, but this day Charnametros seemed especially furious.
“Weak slaves give weak children!” the veridian alien blared, repeating a Kthid mantra as he struck again. He barely seemed to notice the redheaded colonist choking as his cock jerked inside her… barely even aware of his own orgasm through his palpable outrage.
After her prompt scream, Anna made something that sounded like a noise of apology, but it was nowhere near enough to placate her Master. Other Kthid loitered nearby and cackled at the flogging. However, Amara noted that their grim, sordid amusement seemed only partly directed at the human – the rest seemed reserved for Charnametros. It was as if the young Warrior had just suffered some indignity that his peers were eager to rub in his face.
“I’ll flay the skin off your bac-” Charnametros snarled so that his fang-replete maws showed, right before spotting Sarcand and halting his blow mid-strike. The Huntmaster’s attentions were far more important than the disciplining of some slave. He saluted his Huntmaster – his great grandfather, as Amara understood it – and slapped the cum-soaked face of the red-haired colonist away from him. She sprawled to the ground, too bound to rise as she gasped for breath and tried to swallow the thick issue clogging her mouth. Charnametros paid her no more mind that he did Anna, walking over to his great grandfather and beginning to give a detailed report on the movement of supplies, foodstocks and other logistical issues.
Amara didn’t pay attention… she was trying too hard to keep her mask on even as a horrified tremble ran through her vitals at seeing what had become of the ex-Medical Officer. Standing straight-backed, chin high, and with arms clasped behind her back so to emphasize her own breasts, Amara’s eyes nevertheless clandestinely scanned her fellow slave. Anna was in no condition to do the same, and a part of Amara thought that that was for the better. Anna Constantos was the only one whose eyes still constantly blazed with guilt at their failure to protect the colonists. The emotion threatened to stimulate and awaken feelings within Amara that she preferred to remain buried.
You chose this.
Swallowing, the former Captain forced her mind away, dismally wondering if her old friend’s eyes would still glimmer after what Charnametros now had done to her. While Amara had been impregnated twice and forced to bear the Huntmaster’s vile children, Anna had been bred almost constantly with only a few months between to heal and recuperate. The libido and urge to reproduce was even more insistent among young Kthid. Sarcand, as she understood it, had lived long enough to have over 500 children, but nearly half of them were born in the first twenty-five years of his long life… he had had time to grow into what he preferred. For Charnametros, Anna was his very first breeder, and she was used as such.
The last time Amara had laid eyes on Anna she was in the early stages of another pregnancy. Now, her belly had re-flattened. That would make this her… eighth youngling? Why the acrimonious brutality though? A miscarriage? Amara could think of no other infraction which could warrant such hatred towards a defeated slave. Maybe grave disobedience? No… That was plainly unlikely. Anna kept dangling from the ceiling, looking more like a slab of hung-up cadaver than a human as her owner saluted Sarcand again and strode back over to the devastated colonist and doctor. The redhead he gripped firmly by her mane of scarlet hair, lifting her back up to her knees and plugging her throat once more before he resumed whipping the doctor… to Amara’s eyes, he had grown no softer in the meantime.
It was all too much to watch. Amara wished to leave this place. The sight of her friend suffering like this threatened to rouse too many dangerous feelings and there was nothing she could do to help her.
Her master could move with surprising stealth and swiftness for such a giant. She didn’t hear him approach before she felt his clawed fingers on her chin. The sudden domineering contact with that behemoth of hate sent a chill rippling through Amara, even as he forced her gaze more directly towards Dr. Anna Constantos, making her linger upon the sight of her brutalized frame. “Notice how the young Kthid beats his slave so,” Sarcand said.
“Yes Master,” Amara intoned emotionlessly, almost robotically.
“Do you know why?” he asked.
The thought raced through her mind like a scared mouse. Would he punish her if she answered incorrectly? Maybe admitting ignorance was the safest path to pursue? She swallowed. “No, Master,” Amara replied.
The Kthid in the back of the room chuckled at hearing these words. It was truly a baleful sound, like some insidious private joke that Amara would soon be a part of herself. Even after five years of imprisonment aboard the Death of Hope, there were still new facets to the Kthid’s cultural cruelty that were new to her.
“Tell her, Charnametros,” Sarcand ordered.
In ways subtle and minute, the young Kthid’s countenance tightened in several places. It was a great dishonor to have to explain himself to a slave, and she could see the way he grew angrier still. Amara’s ignorance had earned her friend further beatings… he now had fresh wrath to vent upon the strung-up human. “My firstborn failed his trials,” Charnametros succinctly informed her.
“And…?” Sarcand pressed.
“Is now one of the casteless,” the warrior concluded.
One of those Kthid in the back turned his snouted visage in their direction, grinning as if about to say something truly vile. Only the consequence of ferocious violence in the presence of the Huntmaster made him stay his serpentine tongue. Amara knew enough about the Kthid customs and mannerisms to intuit the insult. Every Kthid youngling was put through trials to determine their worth and aptitude, their temperament, and their will, to sort them into a caste that they would likely spend the rest of their lives in. Not everyone got a caste, however. The casteless were the unwashed masses of Kthid society, those who had failed to live up to the standards of their teachers, those who had been deemed unworthy. They were not persons, not warriors or engineers or scientists. They were merely useless hordes, cannon-fodder for the glory of the Dark Star. Once a Kthid was cast down in that ignominy, promotion was a practical impossibility. This was, as far as Amara could tell, the fate of nearly two-thirds of Kthid who matured into adulthood, but that did not lessen the shame of it all… especially not when a firstborn was considered unworthy.
The casteless lived without comfort or chance of glory, forbidden the vast majority of technology and likewise prohibited from breeding and passing on their unworthy line. Fertile slaves were reserved only for proper, Casted Kthid under normal circumstances. Only during great orgies could they ever hope to pass on their genes, as happened when the Midgar-6 was initially taken and the colonists thawed, competing with hundreds of their fellows for a chance at impregnating a single slave.
This was where the intended insult was supposed to go. It was considered especially embarrassing if your firstborn was not worthy… a sign that Charnametros’s genome wouldn’t be found worthy to live on. If all of his offspring would be casteless, then his line and DNA would die with him. “If I see him on the battlefield, I’ll slay him myself for getting in my way,” Charnametros concluded with a growl, his off-hand squeezing the redhead’s skull as he yanked her back and forth on his cock.
Anna suddenly jerked a bit in her bond, like a small sob. Amara couldn’t tell why such a statement would have gotten a rouse out of the beaten scientist… she guessed it to be a mere muscle spasm.
With a final sneer at the youngest Warrior-caste on the ship, Sarcand turned and left him to his mockery and Anna to her torment, heading back to the shuttle. The tug of abandoning her pained comrade stroked gossamer-light against Amara’s soul. Not revealing any sympathy, she turned and followed her Master, once again leaving the people she was sworn to protect behind.
This was when it happened.
Amara caught just a glimpse out from the corner of her eye… a face in the crowd, a visage briefly unveiled amidst a tumultuous mass of Kthid and Humans moving through the halls between orgies. As soon as it had appeared, the face vanished once again behind rutting green bodies. The countenance was haggard and pained, but Amara felt sure she knew what she had seen.
The sudden weight on her heart made it feel like Sarcand had balanced the entire starship on her chest. Amara had thought her sister dead for years. The last she saw of her was being swallowed by a chaotic sea of rutting Kthid, grabbed by over a dozen Casteless as Sarcand threw her out of his favor. No woman could have survived that.
Amara instantly doubted her own sanity. She craned her neck to try and spot who it was that she had beheld, feeling the urge to run over there and search for the person she had seen… but she couldn’t. In the direct presence of Sarcand, such a blatant disregard of his rule would certainly merit extreme punishment… and worse, it would betray that there was something she still cared about more than service. She needed him to continue to think of her as broken… revealing otherwise would entail a surefire suicide. The need for survival, for herself and for all Humanity, checked the desires of her heart, so she kept marching away from that face in the crowd. The anxiety rummaged through her nerves almost immediately. No. Miranda was dead. She was sure of it. The sight was a mere delusion of a pained and long-suffering mind.
Amara blinked in the darkness. The face seemed to hover above her like some imprint upon her retina, half-remembered, unfocused as if in deep shadow. Letting go of Miranda had been her most strenuous task. She had already mourned her, as she mourned her missing best friend, as she mourned the rest of her crew and colonists… and now the possibility that she might see one of them again was reopening the wounds. She couldn’t accept the possibility of the heroine surviving. The possibility would tear her apart, reveal the bandages on her emotions to be as flimsy as scraps of paper pressed to a gushing artery. She had to deny it…
But… it was too late. Amara had already allowed what she had seen, or thought she might have seen, to shake her. The question was now embedded in her psyche and wouldn’t let go. Her perpetual cool was broken, her mindful absence from the daily tortures and humiliations. Whatever she did, she couldn’t get Miranda out of her head. Was the woman still alive? The possibility that all of this was a hallucination only made the experience worse.
Amara gulped with slow-mounting trepidation. Would her very own sister be her downfall after all? To stay in Sarcand’s graces she needed to be perfect. The Kthid Warlord could inspect any weakness inside a woman’s soul and strike.
He would know that Amara was thinking about her.
Amara wasn’t sure how long she lay there, sleepless, before the battleship’s internal night-day cycle shifted and the room came alight. With ritualistic certainty, Amara rose onto her knees, sitting with legs doubled under her. Exactly a minute after the lights had activated, the wall opened near where she had been slumbering, and an alien woman stepped into the room.
The grey-skinned woman moved with incredible grace, and while her movements were more than a little timid it did nothing to make them look awkward. The Arane’s smooth skin glistened slightly in the reddish light as if oiled, and her six arms and six eyes worked in unison, carrying in several trays even as her eyes focused on the room’s occupant. Amara Black knew this woman, had seen her multiple times a day, every day for years. The ship had a large number of the Arane on it, but as far as Amara could tell none of them were slaves to a particular master… rather, they seemed to be servants of the ship in general, taking care of any task too complex for a drone to be instructed to do, or a task for anyone too important to use one. As the Heitera of someone important, like the Huntmaster, Amara and Sarcand’s other slaves had one of the multi-limbed slaves serving as their handmaiden, helping see to it that they were fed, dressed, made beautiful and kept in good health. Despite that, however, Amara had never heard the woman give a name, or been called by one. As far as she was aware, none of the Arane had names anymore.
Their existence was a grim reminder of the fate that awaited any that opposed the Kthid. The Arane had been enslaved sometime in the distant past, but like every other species, the Kthid had no use for the males. For most, that would mean extinction within a single generation… their wombs used entirely to produce new Kthid, and new Kthid only. The Arane, however, were able to reproduce asexually when in the absence of males, and that had been enough for their species to survive. The result, however, had been almost worse – they knew nothing about what their race had been anymore. To every Arane that lived, they had always been a race of sexual playthings for their Kthid masters, cultureless, nameless, and hopeless.
The nameless Arane brought Amara food on one tray and her piercings and chains on another, setting them down before her. “Good morning,” she said, her voice like the sound of two pieces of silk sliding together. She spoke with her people’s tongue… or rather, what passed for a tongue among her people now, since all of their languages had been wiped out with their culture. It was sort of a trader’s tongue, a mix of words in multiple unknown languages and what pieces of Kthid could be pronounced, but it had the benefit that anyone with a roughly human-shaped mouth could make the necessary sounds. It was the common language used by almost all the slaves on the ship… fairly easy to learn, and easy to teach. The Captain, however, didn’t answer, taking the food and beginning to eat in absolute silence. The nameless Arane had long since proven to be the most inconspicuous lifeform that she had encountered upon the ship. In her role as a bondservant for Sarcand’s harem, she must see much… and this was the kind of enviable position that any slave would try to hold on to. Amara suspected that Sarcand used her as his eyes and ears, and while the woman was fairly taciturn she was definitely not mute. Amara didn’t dare say much in her presence, lest she reveal secrets to her master she couldn’t risk him knowing. “Huntmaster Sarcand wishes your presence in his chamber in one hour.”
Amara nodded silently. There was fairly little security on the ship to keep her from going where she wished, but she didn’t mistake the absence of a leash for her not being in a cell. While she could go as she pleased and do as she pleased most days after Sarcand had decided she was ready to be let out of her room, she was under no illusion that failing to come when he called would end in any way but disaster. She might be a free-range slave, but she was still a slave.
It was strange. When she had left Earth, the number of sentient lifeforms that mankind knew to exist numbered only two. Now, onboard this battleship, the realm of sentience had been expanded to dozens of other species. Without exception, they were thralls to the Kthid, of course. She had encountered the intergalactic civilization, and it was a society of slaves.
“Is there anything else I can do for you this morning?” the nameless Arane asked, as she did every morning. She sounded so hopeful. So friendly. So willing to help.
Amara shook her head silently. “No,” she said, as ever. There was nothing she could trust the other woman with. Her secrets were too important to risk trusting one so unknown… one who would no doubt do anything to keep her more comfortable position. The former captain was truly alone.
Having consumed her rations, Amara donned her jewelry, hooking the chains onto her nipples and collar like a badge, just the way he preferred. Then she rose. It was time to present herself to her Master.
The higher-ranked the Kthid, the more Heitera he was permitted to have. Sarcand had five. Not all of them were equal, however. Two of his Heitera, the clone Alician girls, were largely kept as collectibles to be rented out rather than breeders for his harem… they were rarely included in any activity his collection of women were subjected to.
This was the case today. Amara, the aquatic Nys Lylyssa, and the insectoid Faliran Thia all knelt before him. It should have been comforting to be in numbers… but nothing could be less true. This was not a sisterhood of concubines in forlorn thrall to their Master, but fierce rivals, always pitted against one another for his favor and scant mercy. Based on the last 5 years, Amara doubted she could find much common ground with either of the alien women even in the best of circumstances. One was a fanatic, seemingly religiously devoted to the service of the Kthid, and the other seemed so detached and inhuman in her thinking that Amara could not understand the woman at all. Every interaction she had with them was zero-sum… they were as much a danger to her continued survival as Sarcand’s whims or an enraged Kthid could be.
Presented before Sarcand, they all bowed in synchronized unison. It was reasonably rare for all three of them to be attending him at once… it was much more common for his games to pit one against the other. Usually, one of them would be pregnant and so indisposed while the two others combated for his attention. Amara thought that she could guess what had changed now, though. Maldoror. Everything was changing as they approached that devil-haunted planet. Nearness to the end of their voyage was clearly shifting the Huntmaster’s mysterious priorities.
“Master, please let me be the first to serve you,” Lylyssa pleaded like a mouse, wiggling and crawling towards him like a worm. Initiative and willingness to please, that was always the Nys’s forte… The High Priestess of her people, the blue-skinned woman’s skin pulsed with bioluminescence in time with her heartbeat as she offered her body for her God’s arousal.
Sarcand, it seemed, was happy to accept this immediate offer. The morning’s activities began with Sarcand drilling Lylyssa from behind, a brutal and forceful affair despite her accentuating her blue ass towards the Warlord’s hips so to give his cock perfect leverage. Merely penetrating into that tight, violet-colored quim caused a disturbance that sounded like a sapling being broken in half. Lylyssa screamed and her face contorted, becoming gaunt as if drained of all water. Yet despite this, the aquatic woman did not try to pull herself away from him. It was a fanatical discipline that Amara wondered if even Miranda had been able to replicate.
With Sarcand slamming his hips against Lylyssa, grunting and snarling as he found the tight cunt contracting wondrously around his cock, Amara and Thia knew their place. They glued themselves to either of his legs and there they body-worshiped him, grinding their voluptuous figures against his thighs and licking the scales. Amara did this with a cadence that could be mistaken for being voluntary. Princess Thia, though, perpetually wore a leash attached to her collar, one which Sarcand could use if she experienced another one of her “outbursts.”
The Faliran race possessed a strange and truly alien psychology. As Amara understood it, they had some kind of hive mind. Every member of the species still sported intelligence and some level of individuality, but it seemed that their memories and awareness were a shared one. Every Faliran could touch it but Queens – of which Thia was the last one – served as the central hub through which all Falirans connected. This meant that Thia could effectively siphon off any mental trauma that happened to her by holding onto the experiences of other Faliran captives, collecting enough to stay sane. This came at a cost – she still experienced sensual pain and discomfort from what was done to her, and she also felt it for each and every other of the billions of Faliran slaves across the Kthid Imperium… but she could also blunt the traumatic impact of the pain. For her, the Faliran universal consciousness was a bank where she could store-away all of her individuality-killing trauma. This meant that Sarcand seemed to be unable to truly break her, supposedly… though from what Amara could observe, the years of insidious enslavement still ensured that she played along with Sarcand on most of his demands. It was this unique quality that endeared her enough to Sarcand for her to become a Heitera.
“Master! Master I can feel your cock so deep inside of me!” Lylyssa screamed as Amara and her Faliran competitor slavishly awaited their turns to be violated. “Please impregnate me again! Please! Knock me up! Please, you let Thia have the last one!”
While the Faliran Princess’s safeguard was her shared consciousness, Lylyssa’s was the fanaticism of religion. The Nys evidently had been a primitive species when encountered, and Sarcand and his followers had convinced them that they were their Gods come from on high to be worshiped. As their High Priestess, for Lylyssa this suffering bore some divine higher purpose. Such single-minded veneration had baffled Amara since the very first time she encountered it but after 5 years of torment, the Nys’s devotion had not abated. Every day she offered up her body as a sacrifice for the divine Kthid lusts. It seemed to her that every Nys she had ever seen thought this way, to some extent. It didn’t stop their terror, or their screams, but the level of religious fever that could only be characterized as madness seemed to ensure obedience from them. Amara wasn’t sure which species was the stranger, the Nys or the Faliran. Only such extremes of psychology had enabled the two exceptional women from either race to become Sarcand’s favorites.
And then there was Amara… the least of his slaves.
“Eeeehh! Eeeehhh! Ple-IIYYYAAAHHH!!!” the High-Priestess screamed as Sarcand mangled her reproductive organs. His enormous scaly cock was battering her womanhood, practically turning it inside out with each thrust. Lylyssa might worship but she still cried and whimpered like any woman would, even while believing that her torment was divinely sanctioned.
Sarcand dropped his hands off of holding the blue-skinned alien. Powerless in limb and body, Lylyssa tumbled to the floor, heaving at the too-thick air. Her nimble and inhumanly bendable body impacted against its hard surface and started fluttering like a fish out of water. She seemed delirious from pain, the pupils pointing in different directions entirely. However, even though her brain was as bludgeoned as her sexual organ, the Nys female still muttered holy recitations… Amara supposed that having spoken those supposedly sacred words concerning Kthid divinity for so long she now did it on instinct.
Sarcand hadn’t cum… his dick was still raging hard and throbbing, merely having used the amphibious alien’s pussy as an appetizer. Now it was time to move on to the main course. Gazing down towards his legs, he beheld Amara and Thia affixed to either one of them. Those fiendish diminutive eyes started hopping between the two of them, trying to decide which one to violate next. Within their reptilian coldness, there was no mercy to be had.
The brutality of the day was nothing in particular. In fact, it was custom. The only thing that was different was that now he had three lifeforms to play with as opposed to the usual two.
Amara was holding her breath but tried to hide it. Captivity made monsters of them all. She wished that he would go for Thia. With her alien, stoic mindset it seemed that his predations would cause no permanent damage to her anyhow, as opposed to Amara’s whose Human sanity was painfully finite. Her unuttered prayers found no deity who would answer them, however. The Kthid’s gigantic clawed hand clasped her skull like it was a prodigious fruit and then yanked her face towards his crotch, leaving absolutely no doubts at all what the tremendous behemoth wanted from her mouth.
The ex-Captain gaped her mouth open… any hesitation would likely result in her jaw being broken by accident, and she did not want to spend time in the care of one of the Vets again. Her tongue moved over him, tasting the abnormally sweet fluids from Lylyssa’s cunt as she did. With an opening established between her throat and his green-hued phallus, the draconic monster slammed her head up against his pelvis. Immediately, without hindrance, that enormous, slick manhood was rammed down her foodpipe. Amara’s ability to breathe was robbed from her in a second. She gulped and started making crass strangulation noises like a cat coughing up a hairball.
“What’s the matter, Amara?” Sarcand snarled while pumping her skull back-and-forth along his hard-on, using it as a mere masturbation tool. “You seem… tenser today. More contracted in the throat. I know this hole well. I’ve fitted it around my cock more times seemingly that my blade has known its sheath.”
A tremble ran through Amara’s vitals even as she was being face-fucked. Miranda. Even now the shadow of Miranda unnerved her. Was it truly her sister whom she had seen or a trick of the mind? Such considerations were quickly blasted out of her mind, however… the scrapping pain that Sarcand’s dick caused while being speared down her airway blazed supreme. He saw weakness, and like a shark scenting blood, he moved for the kill.
“Perhaps this slave has run its course?” he threatened with a sadistic smirk, pulling Amara off his dick long enough for her to respond. “You have so far failed to live up to my high hopes for you. I thought you’d be less… pathetic. Are you so ready to die?”
Even wide-eyed and overwhelmed, Amara didn’t miss it when Princess Thia’s eyes shot in her direction. That insectoid female was armored with a tough carapace, protecting her soft fleshy part just like her eusocial conscious protected her mind, but her expression was armored only by her own will and Alien inscrutability. “N-No Master!” Amara shouted, hoarse from the savage throat-fuck.
“The human lies, Master,” Thia injected. “Get rid of it.”
“N-NO!” Amara repeated, more spiritedly this time.
“She should be thrown away like her sister,” Thia said. “Humans cause such an endless mess, and one seems equally useless to the next.”
The utterance shocked Amara so badly that she almost jolted. The Faliran royal had always been coldhearted and antagonistic towards her ever since they met, but this felt like an escalation… the alien woman finding an opportunity to so bluntly and directly call for her doom. Amara didn’t know what she had done to deserve the enmity, but the insectile woman had never liked her, not since the beginning. Amara had always chalked the hatred up to another oddity of the Falrian’s uncanny mentality and their need to compete… but never had she tried to consign one of her fellow Heitera to an exile that amounted to death.
“The Human is no longer able to serve you,” Thia repeated with the graveness of a presiding judge. “She should be discarded, as your last Human was.”
Kthid expressions had taken time for Amara to learn, but she knew them well by now. Sarcand was smiling, clearly enjoying this mini-feud developing between his prized possessions. This was bad. This was extremely bad. Amara’s position as an Heitera rested on the indisputability that even as the newest and least important of the Huntmaster’s playthings she was among the foremost females onboard. If Princess Thia managed to undo that perception… then she could really end up being swallowed by an ocean of rampaging Kthid like her sister had been.
Amara swallowed and realized with dead-cold seriousness what she had to do… She had to prove it wasn’t true.
Amara, working delicately, moved her hands around the back of Sarcand… and with a sudden jolt, the ex-Captain of the Midgar-6 practically slammed herself towards the Kthid’s erect hard-on. She swallowed the shaft whole through the force of her lunge, taking the entirely of his thick member down to the root before she started sucking. It was a revolting sensation, not to mention painful to the sensitive spasming membrane which lined her gullet, but Amara knew she had to suck for her life. She had to prove to the Huntmaster that she would do anything to survive.
Sarcand cackled as he beheld the fervor with which Amara fellated his cock. “Such passion, such worship! It’s like you’ve grown gills and become one of the Nys!” he mocked.
Amara rammed her head backward and forwards, swallowing and re-swallowing his manhood. Were she not so expertly and intimately familiar with every dimension of this war-pole of ravishment then it would not have been possible. She quelled the hurt and humiliation which simmered within her to perform this monumental feat, and pressure mounted in her lungs from lack of oxygen. She could not spare the luxury of even gulping down a single breath… she kept going as quickly as she could.
“Soooo obedient…” Sarcand snickered, the voice sibilant to mark its sadism. He enjoyed watching her struggle for life. With one gigantic hand still placed possessively atop her dome, he allowed Amara to work that pole for all that it was worth. Amara knew that she had to draw the sperm from his alien balls or she would face assured doom.
“Master, may I?” Princess Thia said, rising onto both feet.
Another baleful snicker escaped Sarcand’s throat. “You may,” he responded to the unknown query. With her face oscillating rapidly against that cock, Amara had no way of knowing what the insectoid woman insinuated. It didn’t matter anyhow. All she needed was to-
“G-G-gggglllrrkkk!” she crassly sounded as pressure suddenly mounted against Amara’s throat. At first, she couldn’t understand what had happened. It felt as if she was being strangled! Then the human realized that that was exactly what was occurring. Thia had wrapped the leash leading to her collar around the red-haired woman’s neck and started squeezing, practically garroting a kneebound Amara as she sucked on that cock. This further constricted her windpipe so badly that the ex-Captain could no longer drag her mouth along the length of the shaft. She was not only being choked – she was being prevented from ingesting his cock properly.
“Let’s see which one among the two of you are the strongest,” Sarcand said and watched the perversity with gleaming interest.
Amara’s mind raced with the nearness of death. Behind her, Thia was pulling on the leash as if wanting to see Amara’s head pop straight off her body, or at the very least drag her back and off of Sarcand. The Faliran was by no means weak… despite her slender form and almost rail-thin body she had muscle aplenty in her tall form. Amara tightened the cords of her neck to try and counteract the squeeze, fighting back… She needed to keep sucking no matter what. With blood-vessels bulging upon her forehead as if about to burst, she sluggishly and strenuously maneuvered her mouth over her master’s dick, giving it a blowjob at micro speed.
“Just… give… up…!” Thia groaned while choking her, three-fingered hands holding the leash taut as her knee dug into the small of Amara’s back. Amara’s oxygen levels were hitting a dangerous low as she struggled. Damn that Faliran bitch… Why was she so set on seeing Amara cast into the void!? What rose up then wasn’t pride, but Amara felt she had none of that left. It wasn’t righteous hatred or desperation. It was sheer stubbornness, and Amara fought the asphyxiation while working her head like a piston.
The deleterious effects this effort had on her consciousness could not be ignored, though. Her mind was going, her thoughts faltered from the concrete to the abstract as conscious thought began to flee. Amara was almost out of it. Her last articulated thought which wasn’t racing fear or terror was that after all this, after all that she had survived, she might end her life being choked to death on Sarcand’s dick on a day which was not dissimilar from any other.
Ironically, and fortunate for her, the leash strangulation caused her throat to contract even tighter around Sarcand’s erogenous penis, providing him with an even greater amount of pleasure. The Kthid threw his head back and snarled at how savagely that phallus was getting compressed. The layer of scales surrounding his shaft compacted tightly as her throat squeezed him, a pressure delightful to the Kthid and inimical to Amara’s continued life. Her master’s orgasm vied with her death as to which would come first.
Sarcand’s pleasure arrived first. The swollen manhood reached the apex of his pleasure and blasted hot, gummy, yogurt-thick sperm down the lesbian Captain’s rape hole. Torrents of seed were sprayed down her neck and into her belly. The sensation of so much goo flooding down that diminutive tunnel was now a sensation that she was familiar with but could never grow accustomed to. Sarcand had experienced his infernal orgasm. The game of danger was passed. She had proven that she could satiate his monstrous sexual needs no matter what.
She didn’t hear the command, but thankfully Thia’s straining muscles relaxed next. Panting softly with the effort, she stopped pulling, loosening that throat-tautened leash and letting it fall off, revealing a ghastly crimson choke-contusion which now circled Amara’s delicate throat.
The final thing to go was Amara’s consciousness. The redhaired, statuesque human fell into void-like nothingness. Her pupils rolled into the back of their sockets, exposing the white of her eyes, before the body itself slumped backward just like Lylyssa’s had. She became splayed out beside the fallen Nys, her body in an even more undignified position, the arms and legs pointing outwards in the shape of an X as she collapsed into unconsciousness.
Neither Sarcand nor Thia seemed overly concerned by the fact that the Human Heitera had just fallen unconscious. She had fulfilled her purpose of coaxing spunk from the Warlord’s testicles, and that was what mattered. The Huntmaster went about his day as if nothing of import had just happened and the insectoid Heitera followed his every move, leaving Amara to awaken alone.
Amara awoke from a fresh batch of nightmares with a jerk, coughing up semen as her throat burned.
Her shock was so extreme that not even the intensity of her glottal pain could deaden its impact. Even now, while recovering on the floor after almost having been choked to death, the visions still haunted her. It was downright comedic. It was as if that face in the crowd meant more than death itself. Amara lay there in Sarcand’s chamber, sprawled on the floor, slowly curling up on herself. Did… Miranda’s face mean more to her then just the woman herself? Was it an apparition not just of her sister in the specific but all of her past in the abstract? Maybe she saw Miranda as a callback to all that had transpired, to what she had lost… and what she had caused to happen to those under her care. Amara almost thought of Ri’she’a but promptly stopped herself. The Sethis… she could not even dare to think of her. Not here. Not while she suffered these torments and indignities. It would be too much.
More than once, Amara wondered if she should kill herself. It might be the wisest course… she couldn’t give away the secrets she held onto in desperate to lighten her torment if she was dead. Maybe she was being selfish by even trying to cling to life. Still, though, she couldn’t do it. She had condemned all of these people to hell. She would not escape into death and leave them behind to suffer for her sins… she would just have to be strong. Strong today, strong tomorrow, strong forever.
Once, Amara had made a vow to herself that she would never give up. Never. She had bet her species existence on that vow. She would not fail.
With fists clenched, the ex-Captain of the Midgar-6 forced herself onto both feet. Her mind vaulted in many different directions. Chiefly, she felt a blazing desire to see Thia brought down before the insectoid woman killed her. She rose slowly to her feet, one of her hands still balled in anger as the other rubbed at her throat. What the fuck was Thia’s deal, anyhow? They all had to compete, but Thia made it so personal…
Amara took a deep breath and prepared to leave Sarcand’s chamber… but as she did she looked at one of the screens on the wall. So frazzled were her nerves and her mind that Amara didn’t realize that something was momentously off before she had almost left the room The roof of the Huntmaster’s chamber was high ceilinged and the corniced walls far apart, and the screen took up most of the entire wall… showing scan data from outside the ship.
For so long Amara hadn’t been thinking in terms of ships and their Captaining, so it took her long seconds to realize what had changed. The Death of Hope’s engines were disengaged. That meant that they were no longer decelerating from interstellar speeds… it meant that they had arrived. Maldoror was here! After such a long stellar voyage they had finally arrived at the Kthid homeworld. Not upon the planet itself for she did not see one, but in its solar system. The newness of this dread stunned her. Though five years had passed, this was still something she was unprepared for. Wordlessly she stared at the screen, eager to see the views, curious and simply having to know. What sort of world could have spawned a species as brutish and evil as the Kthid?
Amara looked upon what lay ahead… and saw something so shocking, so surprising, so contrary to everything she had been expecting. She had imagined a volcanic homeworld, a lava-spewing hellhole reminiscent of telluric hell. Only such an inhospitable space seemed fitting for these stellar-aged demons to have emerged from. But what she saw was even more unnerving than that. What she was staring at wasn’t a homeworld in the proper sense at all.
Hundreds of thousands of metallic flecks, many tiny by their distance but unbelievably massive, darkened the star. An artificial construct of rotating satellites that circled a blood-red star like tiny darkened flies around its balefully glowing luster. There was only one thing she could possibly be looking at. It was a… Dyson Swarm! These were Kthid-made platforms on which they lived and siphoned energy off the star itself. Planets had once revolved around this dreadful star but they… were long dead. One of them had been the Kthid homeworld, but no longer… it had long since been disassembled for the raw materials and converted into something vast in their technological ascension. Thousands of Mckendree cylinders, rotating around the star… Maldoror was now not a world but a myriad of worlds, each of them capable of housing billions and billions of Kthid and slaves.
Amara’s jaw hung ajar. This was worse than she could ever have imagined. The vastness of these implications harried her to a state of blind insentience. She thought that mankind was up against one world of Kthid, or several planets worth of an empire. Not something as out of reach as this. They were in an entirely different stage of galactic development than humanity… and had to outnumber the Terran population as much as a hundred to one.
All of the sudden, the secret she was protecting seemed pathetic and irrelevant. If the Kthid ever came for Humanity and the Earth… then the time she had bought the Federation by surrendering the colonists and ensuring the escape of the remainder of her crew would account for nothing. There was no way for mankind to prepare to fight this. The Kthid had industry, numbers, and power undreamed off.
Then she noticed something in the further distance.
A black spot upon the star-bestrewn sky. It might not have noticeable at all, save for the baleful violet light around it that warped as they drifted through space… a black hole whose circumference showed nothing but unknowable darkness. Far enough away to present no direct threat but close enough that the Kthid had grown up in the shadow of its baleful light, the Dark Star dominated the sky, mocking her efforts as irrelevant.
And Amara thought she had felt small a few moments ago.
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