Well, the "evil empire of the publishing world" is up to their old tricks again. The latest Lizbeth Dusseau titles kicked off: Damsel:The Betrayal of Lady Roslyn and Stained Sheets
For more thoughts on censorship in the 21st century check out my blogpost from May. http://lizbethdusseau.blogspot.com/2013/05/banned-books-and-censorship.html
Thankfully, these books and other Pink Flamingo titles that have been censored can be purchased on our Pink Flamingo and Erotic Book Network websites, as well as MANY other more opened minded sites throughout the net. Other PF titles banned this week: Bound to be Bitten by Victoria Morris; Kingdom of Slaves by Paul Moore...this book had been listed at the "evil empire" for over ten years; Judge, Jury and Jailer and Nursing a Grievance by Lance Edwards, (femdom)
Featuring my banned titles as this week's excerpts. First: Damsel: The Betrayal of Lady Roslyn. This is an Old World tale, set sometime in the Middle Ages, the country undetermined.
On the day following their arrival at Dragon-Horn, Lady Roslyn and her maid Celia were summoned at midday by General Drago; they would greet him in his great hall, the old woman said before she tottered off, muttering something that Roslyn did not understand, although it was clear that the woman was quite disgruntled, shaking her head. One could almost see the fumes rising from her head.
“I wonder what he wants,” Celia said, her expressive eyes widening with undisguised interest.
“I wonder what you want,” Roslyn came back at her; she too seemed disgruntled.
The maid’s face went blank “Mistress? Did I say something wrong?”
“I would watch yourself. You act as if you’re hoping to be defiled now that you’ve had your way with me.”
The girl looked back at her in horror. “Oh, no, milady! I-uh…” Roslyn waited for an explanation. “I-I just find these things…well,” she was all flustered, her face reddening, “…fascinating. It’s better than being scared.”
“But you should be scared!” With that, Roslyn gathered her skirts and moved from the room, heading toward the staircase.
The two young women found General Drago in his great hall, as promised, although as they stood at the doorway, Drago stood with his back to them, staring pensively from a small window.
Roslyn entered the room, then stopped abruptly, finding herself a little afraid of the scene before her. Celia hung close behind her, nervous, yes, but excitement still bursting from her trembling body. For Roslyn, some evil feeling, compounded by the musty, earthy smell of the place seemed to climb right into her bones and settle there uncomfortably. For all her attempts, she could not shake the sense that the evils of this place would soon play out on her.
“I trust you slept well,” Drago said, on hearing them enter, though he’d still not turned around.
“As well as possible in a new place, in a strange bed,” Roslyn answered as graciously as she could, though she was not feeling particularly gracious. Still, he hadn’t turned to address her properly. What held his interest, she did not know, but he made her endure a long awkward silence before he finally turned around. In fact, she waited so long that she’d become annoyed by his rude behavior and was about to leave. But Drago, quick to sense her move off in a huff, whipped around and stopped her retreat.
“Did I grant you permission to leave?” he barked, causing her body to shiver all the way to her toes.
“I didn’t believe that permission was needed,” she managed to come back. Roslyn was determined not to let the man intimidate her, although he had already shattered her determination with a penetrating stare that seemed to strip her of all indignation—as well as her clothes. Never had she felt quite so naked in a man’s presence. Her only choice was to break his fixed stare by averting her eyes. This she did as she moved to the hearth where at least the glow from the fire was warming.
“I had hoped that our dealings would be more pleasant, Lady Roslyn. Perhaps you think that your disdain for me will somehow soften me?”
She looked up, taking a moment to inspect his face, the grim but civil expression, his shadowy but intriguing mien, although, she tried not to react in any visible way; that strange evil about him seemed difficult to shake. “I doubt that anything would soften you,” she said.
“Only the smile of a kind lady,” he returned.
Taken aback by that comment, she bit her lip and turned away again. The results of this meeting were not what she planned. She wanted Drago to find her strong, a forbidding adversary, not some girlish ninny with no backbone. Now, without knowing exactly how, she was teetering on the verge of a nervous faint, barely able to breathe.
While her lady and General Drago faced off, the maid Celia stood in the corner, her eyes wide and transfixed on the scene, moving from Roslyn to the general and back as they took turns speaking. When one of Drago’s soldiers suddenly stepped behind her, whispering in her ear, she shrieked.
Drago’s attention instantly diverted, his eyes riveted on the frightened girl.
“She is your personal maid?” he asked Roslyn.
He stared directly at the fair-haired Celia. “Come closer, girl.”
But Celia was frozen in place as if she were panic-struck.
“Come on,” Drago motioned her with his hand.
She could barely get her feet to move, making painstaking work of such a short distance, then when she simply could not move an inch more, she stopped and waited.
“Turn around,” Drago ordered her.
The girl visibly shuddered, then, taking small steps she turned until her backside faced the man’s awesome stare.
“All the way around,” he prompted when she stopped, and Celia continued with her head bowed like a sheepish child.
“Look at me,” Drago barked the command. He saw the fright play out across her delicate features. “You’re scared of me.”
She made no reply.
“You’re a comely girl,” he announced, “and soon you’ll find your match here and spread your legs in welcome.”
With that comment the poor girl was nearly overcome.
Roslyn observed much; her maid, though quaking miserably was curiously aroused. Was it Drago? Or the young fellow behind her that made her react this way? A strange smile appeared on Celia’s face, something fleeting and a bit flirtatious. Had Roslyn been right? Did Celia want the very thing she’d been warned about? Was that why the girl could smile now? Was she ready to be taken and used like a whore?
“Geoffrey, take her with you,” Drago ordered. “The girl will be staying with the others.”
“Yes, sir,” the young man answered.
As Celia turned about, her eyes took note of the handsome Geoffrey, first with surprise, then guarded interest. He was just a boy, but a very handsome one he was: his face was smoothly shaved—other than a square of his dark beard left on the cleft of his chin—and his long sleek hair was pulled back off his face and tied at his neck with a leather cord.
As Roslyn viewed the pair, she saw the girl’s eyes light in fascination. She could do worse, Roslyn thought, if this young man was to take her as a lover. Even so, this unexpected turn of events alarmed her.
“Where are you taking her?” she rushed toward Drago, sounding anxious for his answer. “What does it mean that she’ll stay with the others?”
“She’ll stay with the other maids.”
“No! She is to attend me,” Roslyn countered tersely.
“Not if I have other uses for her.”
“You intend to use her as a whore!”
“What makes you think so?”
“Is that not your reputation?”
“Reputation? Didn’t know I had one.” Drago was startled but amused by the exchange.
“Your name is known.”
“Is it now?” He raised his thick brows. “And what do my countrymen think of me?”
“You’re known as a brute, a barbarian, a defiler of women.”
“Am I? Well, seems that is a fine thing to be; gives me the right to do as I please, doesn’t it? How about I make a whore of you, hum?” he said with a cocky half smile. “You would probably like that, little vixen that you are! I’ll bet you’re ripe and ready between those thighs.”
“You are a shameless brute!” she seethed, a fact that only made him walk her way. She could do nothing but attempt to stand her ground and meet his firm gaze with hers. He moved in so close that she could smell his body, the rich perfume of earth; scents of smoke and leather lingering in his aura. They felt each other breathe, something hot passing between them.
As he had the night before, he lifted her hair in his hand and stared at the curious color, liking what he saw. He liked the whiteness of her neck, the pink blush, the youth; she was far younger than he expected.
“You do realize,” he started, “or perhaps you don’t… that your uncle has given you and your maid to me as gifts of appeasement.”
Roslyn stared at him, at first too stunned to reply, then she finally found her tongue, “He has what?”
“Given you to me.”
“No! That is a lie! He has no right! I am no man’s gift!”
“Oh, but you are, Lady Roslyn. Indeed you are.” She took one step back and her hair dropped from his hand. “I own you now, like I own my horse, my fortress, my ducks, my geese, my cattle, the ale I drink and the food that I consume.” He smiled wryly. “Oh, and I will consume you, fair lady.”
“You will not!” In that moment of temper, she attempted to slap his face. Her hand reared back about to strike, but Drago moved too fast, catching the tiny wrist in his large palm. He held it there above her head and stared down, his face blank of expression, any second either anger or mirth might register there. But the result was neither one. Instead, he kissed the pale underside of her wrist, then carefully lowered her hand to her side.
“You try that again, milady,” he said quietly, “and I’ll have you strung up in my court and beaten bloody.”
She stood immobilized for the moment, although her emotions raged; her eyes sparked and her chest heaved with passion.
He backed away. “I guessed right then. Your uncle failed to tell you the truth.”
“He told me nothing about such a gift. I have no knowledge of that, in fact, I would vow it is a lie.”
He raised his brows and then he seemed to snicker, making fun of her distress.
“Oh? A lie? Perhaps you should search your heart, for the truth is written there. The man’s a blackguard like the rest of us. Draydon is no gentleman, I assure you. The last true gentleman escaped this earthly life at the end of a sword.”
Roslyn gazed at him confused by what he meant, but Drago did not explain further.
Perhaps a minute of screaming silence passed before Roslyn steeled her will, making herself strong when all she wanted was to collapse like a sobbing child.
“I suggest that you face the truth, Lady Roslyn,” Drago spoke again. “Your life no longer belongs to you—as if it ever did. You are merely a pawn.”
“Pawn?” Anger rose in her eyes again.
“Do not condemn me for speaking the truth.”
“Truth? Is that what women are? Pawns and nothing more?”
“I did not create this life…I merely play my part.”
“As if you did not have the power to choose, as if being a villainous lecher were your only option.”
“I do what is expedient. What pleases me. And you, milady, please me.”
“I don’t know how that can be if I despise you. Try as you wish, you will not win my favor.”
He smiled. “But I need not win your favor to have you, not when I own your fair body, and it is mine to use.”
A dizzying wave of sensation passed through her as the tension between them mounted. “Is that all you have to tell me? That you will conquer me by force?”
“By force—or otherwise. Yes. That is all for now.”
“Then I will take my leave,” she said, starting toward the door. She could not say more, no words, not even an indignant thought passed through her mind.
“Leave you may, but not without my permission,” Drago interjected. “There is one other thing?”
He had stepped back toward a writing desk, where a rectangular wooden box sat squarely in the center. Roslyn turned and watched as Drago opened the lid and withdrew from inside a collar, a claiming collar made of soldered chain links, the kind used for lowly slaves and servants, the metal old and dull. She’d seen several about the throats of Drago’s servants, although the general was not the only commander or sovereign to use such devices to signify their property. She stared at the hammered metal piece in shock. “Oh, you will not reduce me to this!” she cried, stepping back.
“I don’t reduce you. Your mind does that. But now is the time for you to understand that you are indeed my property. With the collar you’ll become accustomed to the requirements of your status.”
“It will do no such thing!” Roslyn hastened toward the door, but Drago was too quick for her. Reaching out, he swiped her arm, jerking her back to him so she landed against his muscled chest, her breast heaving with distraught passion. Though she struggled to get away, he held her fast to him while he clamped the collar about her throat and set the lock. She had no choice but to breathe in the scent of him: his clothes, his breath, his body, and the dominant spirit that was as much a part of him as his eyes, his mouth and his hands. Quickly overcome by raw emotion, her anger exploded and she fought him off in a fitful rage, though her fight was no match for his impressive strength, as he contained her inside his unyielding arms. For just one brief instant, his lips were so close to hers that she thought he’d press a claiming kiss against her mouth. But then a second later, Drago’s eyes filled with merriment and he pushed her gently from him, seeing that she was effectively subdued.
The collar was rigidly set, loose enough not to cut, but tight enough for her to feel with every passing second the certainty of her subjugation. She could have wept, but she was still too angry for tears.
“You can take this horrible act any way you choose,” he mocked her. “Hate the thing as much as you want, but in time it’ll work like magic, Milady Roslyn. I know. I have seen it happen many times. Resign yourself, my little pawn.”
“Never!” she screamed.
Her scream was no meager scream; the sound reverberated through the room, echoing off the stone and carrying throughout the fortress like a mighty thunder. The intensity shocked even Roslyn and made Drago look at her admiringly. Afterwards, however, she was spent; there was no more ferocity in her tired bones.
When she’d recovered, when she caught her breath, she finally spoke:
“With your permission, may I please return to my room?”
The master of Dragon-Horn could see the acquiescence in the lady’s face, although he was by no means tricked into believing that she had been subdued. For the moment, at least, she was calm and that was enough for him.
“Yes, milady, you may go.” He nodded respectfully, then watched the indignant woman take her leave. The irony in the way he addressed her, however, calling her ‘milady’ still, did not escape either one. A fiendish pleasure for Drago, more fuel to further infuriate the humiliated noble lady.