Zander woke up with a start, one hand lifting to swipe at his face and it came away wet. Cold sweat. Then he realized that his arms were free and he sat up and gazed about his room. He was alone. But the memory of what Alcazar had done to him was fresh in Zander's mind. The pain of the burn was an instant reminder and Zander pushed down the sheet. Someone had taped a gauze pad over it and Zander peeled it off. He felt sick as he studied the initials branded into his thigh. It was crystal clear to Zander that Alcazar considered him his property, and that there was nothing he could do to be free of him. Nowhere he could run, nowhere he could hide.
Cursing, Zander slid out of bed and headed into the bathroom. Ignoring the throbbing pain of the burn, Zander showered. He practically scoured his skin raw before stepping out to dry off. He didn't bother with a towel as he headed out of the bathroom to get dressed, but cursed at himself when he found Alcazar waiting for him. Zander withstood the man's heated gaze roving over him. Alcazar had seen it all before anyway.
"How is the burn?" Luis asked, moving closer to Zander.
"Fine." Zander took a step back and waited for a reaction. Nothing was forthcoming from Alcazar but a smile. "I need to get dressed," Zander stated. He knew he was pushing his luck but he felt as if he had nothing more to lose.
Luis took Zander by the arm and drew him over to the bed. "Lie down," he ordered. "You need ointment on the burn and for it be bandaged. Otherwise you risk infection."
It crossed Zander's mind to disobey Alcazar, but he was too tired to deal with the repercussions. So he stretched out on the bed, naked to Alcazar in every way, and closed his eyes. Zander didn't want to see the desire that burned in Alcazar's eyes. Not when he didn't understand why it was there. Why the man wanted him. It made no sense. Nothing that had happened in the past few months made sense to Zander anymore. When had he become a whore? Alcazar's whore.
"It's healing nicely," Luis said as he studied the burn. He spread ointment on it then taped a gauze pad over it. "How do you feel, Zander?"
"Fine." Nothing more. Zander had nothing more to give. Then he felt it, Alcazar's fingers curling around his cock. He burned with shame as his body responded to the caresses. He really was a whore.
Luis licked the tip of Zander's cock. He made short work of making Zander come, then he took pleasure in getting a damp wash cloth and a towel to clean him. Then he pulled a syringe from his pocket and uncapped it.
Zander had remained mostly unresponsive since his orgasm. He felt almost as if he were outside of himself, watching all of this happen to someone else. Wishing that it were someone else. But when he saw the syringe he shook his head. "Whatever that is, I don't want it."
"You need it." Luis' smile was cold. "I thought you had learned by now that I know what you need, Zander." He reached for the boy's arm. "You're angry at me."
"I'm angry at myself," Zander whispered. He felt the pinprick and closed his eyes.
Luis rubbed over the spot with a fingertip. "This is to help the pain."
Zander nodded. "Can I get dressed now?"
"Of course." Luis rose from the bed. "I picked out something for you to wear. When you're ready, come down to breakfast."
"Fine." Zander got up and watched Alcazar leave. He found the clothes laid out for him and clutched them in his fists for a moment. But in the end he simply put them on. Resistance was futile. Zander caught his reflection in the full-length mirror as he turned to leave. Black jeans that fit him snuggly and an emerald green pullover that was like a second skin. Brenda had called them Henley's. Zander realized that Alcazar was showing him off. And why not? He was his property now. In every way.
* * * * *
Zander was pleased to see Brenda at the table. She smiled at him and he managed to smile back sincerely. And when Alcazar told them to spend the day together, Zander felt a sense of relief. He even managed to choke down enough food to satisfy Alcazar, who soon excused himself to take care of business.
"What do you want to do today, Zander?" Brenda asked.
"It is nice out?" At her nod Zander said," Want to go riding?"
Brenda smiled. "That would be great. I've missed riding with you. Give me a minute to change into jeans. I'll meet you at the stables."
Zander nodded and took the time to finish his coffee. They chatted as the horses were saddled, then took off. And Zander took note that this time there were two guards riding with them, instead of the usual one. Which meant that he had a guard now too. Keeping that in mind, Zander steered Brenda clear of any talk that seemed too personal, instead focusing on her and the music and trivial things.
They rode for several hours, returning in time to freshen up for lunch. Zander checked on the burn. Riding had aggravated it but it hadn't bled through the gauze. And because of the shot Alcazar had given him, he hadn't really felt the pain until now. A part of Zander had hoped he could some how rub away the brand. And another part of him welcomed the pain. It seemed just punishment for what he had become.
When he entered the dining room it was to discover that Alcazar was joining them. Lunch was surprisingly pleasant and when it was over, Alcazar asked Zander if he could do some research for him on a new corporation. Zander felt himself tense up but nodded. To his surprise the rest of the day was spent working. Alcazar never touched him. Dinner was somewhat enjoyable for Zander as well and afterwards he played Chess with Brenda while Alcazar read a book. Zander begged off to bed early, pleading a headache, which was genuine and Brenda and Alcazar merely wished him goodnight.
Once in his room, Zander decided to shower relax him. He found some plain old aspirin in the medicine cabinet and took them. Then he pulled on sweats and a tee shirt and crawled into bed. He closed his eyes and drifted easily into sleep.
Morning came and Zander woke up with a start. And with the realization that Alcazar had left him alone. It should have made Zander happy, but he couldn't shake the feeling that something bad was going to happen. That Alcazar was simply biding his time.
* * * * *
Four days passed along much the same vein. For two days Zander spent the mornings with Brenda and the afternoons at work with Alcazar. Not once during that time did Alcazar touch Zander in any way. It was strictly business between them. That should have made Zander relax, but instead it set off warning bells inside him. Then Alcazar left for business and was gone for two days. Zander ran things in his absence, talking to Alcazar on the phone occasionally. On the fifth night Alcazar came home.
Zander was playing pool by himself when Alcazar entered. He was surprised to see him and missed a shot because of it. "Welcome home, Mr. Alcazar," Zander offered in greeting.
Luis smiled at him. "Thank you, Zander. I have something for you." He held out a box.
"What's this for?" Zander eyed the box with suspicion.
"A thank you for a job well done. It's nice being able to go out of town and know that you will take care of things for me." Luis tapped the box. "Open it."
Zander was reluctant, but did as he was told. Inside was a heavy link, gold chain. Zander didn't have to be a jeweler to know that it was expensive. "It's beautiful."
Luis nodded. "Yes...it is. Put it on."
"Uh...I don't really wear jewelry."
"You do now." Luis took the chain from the box and moved to stand behind Zander. He undid the clasp, looped the chain around Zander's neck, then redid it. "Turn around."
Zander obeyed. The chain felt heavy against his neck. Just one more symbol of ownership for Alcazar. "You do enough for me, Mr. Alcazar," Zander stated. "I don't need gifts." In essence, everything that Zander had was a gift from Alcazar and he realized that he had become totally dependent on the man before him, in every way. It scared him on every level.
Luis chuckled softly and reached out to finger the chain. "I enjoy buying things for you, Zander." He gripped the chain and tugged, pulling Zander into him and claiming a kiss. He threaded his fingers through Zander's hair and kissed him deeply for a long moment, then he let him pull away, but his fingers still combed through the dark hair. "It's getting long."
"Too long," Zander dared to comment. It was longer than he had ever worn it before and he was tired of it hanging in his eyes. In fact, he could pull most of it back into a short ponytail.
"I like it long," Luis purred, then he moved away from Zander to pour himself a drink. "How is the burn?"
Zander flinched. "It's fine. It's healed."
Luis took a swallow of scotch then nodded. "I want to see it."
"Of course." Zander thought about protesting, but from the look in Alcazar's eyes he could guess that disobedience would land him in the locked room. He couldn't handle that right now. It was bad enough already, waiting for something bad to happen. Knowing that it would but not knowing what, or when. He undid his belt, unfastened his jeans and slid them down far enough to reveal the brand. Zander didn't react as Alcazar moved to him, going down on one knee to study the mark. And when the fingers stroking the brand slid inside his boxer briefs to stroke him, he did nothing but close his eyes.
"Did you miss me?" Alcazar asked, as he curled his fingers around Zander's cock. But before he could get a reply, his cell phone rang. Alcazar cursed, releasing Zander and rising to his feet to answer it.
Zander took the moment to pull his jeans back up and fasten them. He even went so far as to try to leave the room, but Alcazar blocked his way. His phone conversation was brief. Zander didn't like the look in Alcazar's eyes, but he risked the other man's fury. "I'm tired. I'd like to go to bed now."
Luis nodded. "In a moment. I almost forgot to tell you that I'm having a dinner party here tomorrow night. Four couples. Very rich and very powerful. Mob affiliated, of course."
"Of course," Zander echoed.
"A tailor is coming over in the morning to fit you for a tux." Luis let his eyes rove over Zander and smiled. "You and Brenda will both be in attendance."
Zander felt a sense of relief that Brenda would be there. That meant this was business with maybe a side of schmoozing for Alcazar. "Whatever you say, Mr. Alcazar," Zander replied. "May I go now?"
Luis kissed Zander gently then whispered, "Sweet dreams."
Zander left the room and it wasn't until he reached his own room that he realized he was shaking.
© Shelly 2004