Being a tale of love, pain, sex, relationships, and boring government jobs
Three short stories of erotic science fiction with a BDSM edge. Terry Montiero and d’Schane Grey are techies whose relationship is fueled by their chess game–a power game. Originally published in 1992 as a chapbook, the stories have been unavailable for years until this eBook revival. Fans of m/m will enjoy these characters thoroughly.
On Wednesday Terry lost at chess.
He sat back in his chair and stared at the game board as it faded away. The program recorded his losing score. Terry didn’t lose often. His console prompted him with several unread mail messages, which he ignored. Removing the headset, Terry blinked as his eyes adjusted and stared about the office.
The C3A building, where Terry worked, was a modern, terraced office a bit smaller than a football field. The lowest and most central area held a fountain, grass, maple trees and a small bit of carefully reconstructed parkland. The walls were lined with the balconied offices of those important enough to merit privacy. High above, the polarized ceiling admitted the glare of the yellow, polluted, northern Virginia summer sky.
As Terry sat in his low-walled cubicle in the center of that glass cavern, he could never have known who was staring down from a curtained window, smiling in triumph, knowing something that Terry did not. The winner need not even be in the building, though the metachess server ran off a C3A machine. Access was easy to arrange from a remote site. Terry’s conqueror could have been at Caltech, for all he knew.
Terry was disturbed. Who on the Net was that good? Was it Daphne? Packing up his things for the day, Terry locked out the console and headed for the underground, deep in thought. Once out of the Classified area, Terry passed few people. On weekday nights the stores were nearly empty. Bored doormen lounged about the hotel entrances. A small pack of young punks clad in tight, old leather and bright new chains had spilled out of the Sense Arcade, daring the security guards to chase them away. One of them, vampire-pale and androgynous, turned and gestured a sexual come-on so blatant that Terry missed his step and walked into a potted plant. Stung by their laughter, and certain they could smell his confusion, Terry hurried down the mass transit entrance.
Metro had finally gotten climate control fixed in the subway. The station was cool and pleasant and smelled only slightly of sulphur. The aseptic walls and crisp advertisements were familiar and reassuring.
Terry’s train whisked out of the station and over the Potomac River. He looked back at the spidery mass of Crystal City, its hotels and DoD offices, restaurants built on expense account dining, and the hulking air-conditioned fortress of the Communication Authority. Terry wondered again about the metachess wizard who had beaten him. If it wasn’t Daphne, could it have been the same person who cracked the Gateway?
Daphne was already home, but scarcely lifted her head from her console when Terry came in.
“How was your day?” he asked.
Terry sighed and went to microwave dinner.
He knew why Daphne was so busy. Hers was the first class to graduate since the phone system disasters of ’12. The Government had been riding the new generation of computer geniuses hard, offering them unlimited loans if only they’d build the talent and discipline to keep the Net in one piece. After Daphne passed this last set of exams, she’d be bound to a civil service job for the next three years. How good a job depended on her GPA. Daphne was brilliant, first in her class, and likely to graduate with all honors.
Sometimes Terry wished she still had the time to love him.
At length Daphne logged out. She tipped her chair back against the wall and tapped her fingers against her knee. Her face was pale and her blonde hair greenish in the fluorescent light.
“I aced Queue Theory,” she said. “One more exam to go.”
“That’s good. I lost a game of metachess.”
She chewed the end of a stylus idly.
“I don’t know who to, either. They left no ID.”
Terry was watching Daphne. It could still be her. She had been known to lie.
“You ate?” he asked.
“Yeah. Ordered a pizza.”
Terry finished dinner and dumped the plate down the recycle bin.
“They’re bringing in the big guns on the Gateway security problem,” he offered. When she was silent, he continued hopefully. “They hired lots of outside consultants and are turning the whole Authority upside-down. All staff have been asked to submit to scan. My turn is tomorrow morning.”
She nodded as if to be polite.
And then, since words were useless, Terry went and knelt and pressed his head against her knee. She was quite still for a long time. He stole a glance upward at her face, and wasn’t sure what bothered him more, his sexual hunger or her indifference.
At last Daphne pushed him away and walked to the closet. Standing, she was taller than he, even in bare feet. Terry scarcely drew a breath as she dropped a handful of stuff on the couch.
“Come here and take your shirt off.”
Terry obeyed. Daphne clasped his wrists in a pair of handcuffs, then, pulling Terry down to his knees, padlocked them to the eye-bolt set in the bottom of the couch. Daphne dropped down to sit in front of him, her denim-clad legs spread wide, and pressed something unyielding against his lips. It was the rubber handle of her whip.
“Eat this,” she ordered.
Terry opened his mouth. Instantly Daphne shoved the whip handle against the back of his throat. He tilted his head and swallowed, feeling the tears drip down his face. He was never really sure what she got out of it, aside from the obvious dominance kick. Maybe that was enough. His own jeans were becoming unbearably tight.
Daphne fucked his mouth a few more times, then pulled the whip out, wiping the handle on Terry’s shirt. Then she stood up.
Terry rested his head against the edge of the couch. No matter how much he begged to be beaten with her three-tailed whip, the moment of terror before it struck was almost too much to bear. After she began, the rising adrenaline rush would wipe out his fear. Now he chewed his lips to keep from asking for mercy. One word and she’d release him, lose interest, and return to her console. And that wasn’t what he really wanted.
The first stroke of the whip bit into his back with the lazy deliberation of a cat at a scratching post. Terry cringed and closed his teeth on the couch. He could smell the oiled length of the whip as it cut the air, then his flesh. Blow followed blow, regular as clockwork. Daphne wasn’t strong, but her whip was nasty artillery. The fire in Terry’s skin consumed doubt and confusion like some live and hungry thing. Terry was getting hard, faster than the stoned feeling was emptying the thoughts out of his brain….
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