The King's Harem

The King's Harem

Status: In Progress

Genre: Romance

Houses:

Details

Status: In Progress

Genre: Romance

Houses:

Summary

Set in an epic fantasy type world, this story focuses on the life of the King's concubines, in the nation of Rhiala. Adversity: a state or instance of serious or continued difficulty or misfortune. (courtesy of my Great-Great-Great Uncle Noah Webster's book) What is a story without adversity to overcome? In essence it ends up being the author just pontificating and stringing words together because they can. Descriptions, scenes, conversations - all without reason. Adversity is what captures our attention. Adversity is what keeps us coming back for more. Adversity is a bitch. In a story meant only for adults, one can be more free with the amount of violence shown. I've had to censor my novel on Booksie.com, taking out aspects of the story that I felt were integral to shaping the characters into the people they become. Toning down the violence, taking out scenes of sexual assault, and in general focusing more on what goes on in the protagonist's head were ways I chose to make the story more accessible for a wider audience. After all, an epic fantasy with a gay protagonist is something LGBT teenagers SHOULD be able to read - severe under-representation in media sucks. This book, however, is not toned down. Trigger warnings will not be given for individual chapters, so I'll just say it here: adversity is a bitch.

Summary

Set in an epic fantasy type world, this story focuses on the life of the King's concubines, in the nation of Rhiala.

Adversity: a state or instance of serious or continued difficulty or misfortune. (courtesy of my Great-Great-Great Uncle Noah Webster's book)

What is a story without adversity to overcome? In essence it ends up being the author just pontificating and stringing words together because they can. Descriptions, scenes, conversations - all without reason. Adversity is what captures our attention. Adversity is what keeps us coming back for more. Adversity is a bitch.

In a story meant only for adults, one can be more free with the amount of violence shown. I've had to censor my novel on Booksie.com, taking out aspects of the story that I felt were integral to shaping the characters into the people they become. Toning down the violence, taking out scenes of sexual assault, and in general focusing more on what goes on in the protagonist's head were ways I chose to make the story more accessible for a wider audience. After all, an epic fantasy with a gay protagonist is something LGBT teenagers SHOULD be able to read - severe under-representation in media sucks.

This book, however, is not toned down. Trigger warnings will not be given for individual chapters, so I'll just say it here: adversity is a bitch.

Chapter1 (v.1) - The Queen's Birthday

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: April 26, 2018

Reads: 2390

Comments: 2

A A A | A A A

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: April 26, 2018

A A A

A A A

Terrick brushed through the curtain that hung over the entrance to his sleeping alcove, and moved out into the hallway. He wore loose, blue silk pants with a reddish brown vest. He was barefoot, and wore no jewellery. He brushed his fine sandy blond hair out of his eyes, and tucked it back over his long elven ears as he moved down the curving hall. Archways opened occasionally into the larger lounging area, and he stopped in one of these.

He stood in the archway and gazed over the room. It was a large oval, draped with rich tapestries and lit by golden chandeliers and candelabra, descending in tiers to the high fountain that graced the center. Large plush stools and divans dotted the entire room, interspersed with flowering potted plants and ornate vases. Stacks of books littered the tables, Ana’s needlework basket was overflowing onto the floor as their cat chased the balls of thread around, and a small group of people sat near the fountain, enjoying the last of their breakfast.

The tinkling sound of the water tumbling in the fountain was almost lost in the strains of music drifting through the room. Marshona sat at the large court harp to his left, eyes closed, lost in her music. Their King never seemed to mind the callouses the harp strings left on her fingers, and would often call her to do nothing more than play for him. She was tall, with pale skin and reddish-gold hair that cascaded in ringlets without much need for curling irons. She wore a simple white dress, with long and flowing skirts that allowed her to spread her legs easily to accommodate the harp.

Terrick gazed around the room. He was the last to arrive for breakfast, and his friends noticed.

“Lazybones, I saved you a sweet roll, though Basha drank all the spiced wine.” Sella was much younger than him, but she always treated everyone as if she was their mother. “You’ll have to subsist on milk. Marshona still hasn’t eaten, but nobody would steal our dear harpist’s portion.”

Terrick kissed her cheek as he sat next to her, taking the silver goblet she handed him. It was chilly to the touch, and he drank deeply. The evening was warm, and the milk refreshing and sweet – the kitchen had added a touch of vanilla tonight. He brushed his hair back out of his eyes again as he reached for the proffered roll.

“Thank you, my dear, I don’t know how I’d survive without you!” Terrick took a bite, relishing the sweetness that flooded his mouth. He leaned back, resting his head against Sella’s shoulder as he chewed. Sella was small, with a cherubic face and dimples. She kept her hair short, in gentle raven waves to her shoulders that gave the impression that she was younger than she actually was. Though, her extremely low cut gown left nobody in doubt as to her maturity.

“You wouldn’t. If you keep sleeping in like that, you'll be called and still be half dressed!” Sella poured him another goblet full of milk and took a drink before passing it to him. “You’ll miss your breakfast entirely, then!”

“I’ll live,” Terrick waved a hand nonchalantly. “What’s one meal?”

“Oh trust me: that’ll be the time you’re kept til dawn, worked all night long.” Sella smiled indulgently at him, and then poked his shoulder, nudging him away from her. She stood, brushing down her skirts. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m not quite ready, so I should prepare.”

“Prepare? Prepare what?” Terrick was confused. “You’re absolutely gorgeous, what do you need to prepare?”

“Women’s secrets,” Sella winked as she spoke, blowing Terrick a kiss. “You wouldn’t understand, all you need to do is freshen your breath after waking and you’re ready. Me? The waxing alone...”

~~

It was several hours after breakfast, and full dark had fallen. Terrick was lounging indolently, listening to Maric and Basha argue over their card game as he scratched the ears of the grey striped cat stretched out on his chest. He reached and was barely able to catch the edge of his wine cup without disturbing the half-grown feline when a small golden bell by the door tolled once. The sound was deep, much deeper than one would expect from such a small bell, and it resonated throughout the room.

Everyone looked up. A small blue gemstone embedded in the wall next to the bell was glowing softly. Everyone glanced at Terrick, sending a smile or a wink his way.

There was a second set of gems on the left of the door, but those gems had not lit up for at least five years, since the last Queen. 

Terrick sat up as quickly as he could without disturbing his napping friend – he didn’t fancy showing up with claw marks on his chest. He set the cat on the pillow his head had recently vacated and reached for the goblet to finish his wine off quickly.  The bell rang again, and an orange gem in the wall lit up.

Sella sat up from where she had been reading nearby, closing her book. She arched an eyebrow at Terrick as she stood. “Two at once? That’s uncommon.”

Before Terrick could respond, the bell rang a third time. Everyone was silent now. Their King had never called for more than two at once, and they stared at the gems with bated breath, waiting. The yellow gem began to glow.

Everyone glanced at Marshona now, as she stood elegantly from her stool. She’d returned to her harp after grudgingly allowing herself to be dragged to breakfast, and she gave the instrument a loving caress as she descended the tiers. 

There were no more calls, and the group broke into murmured speculation. Were they to be loaned out to guests, or passed around at a private party? Their King had never done that to them, but his predecessor had. None of them had cared for the experience.

Maric darted over to Marshona with a small jar, into which Marshona dipped her fingers. She rubbed the soothing lotion into her callouses, touching a bit behind her ears to spread the light scent around as Maric plucked at her curls with a brush he'd produced from somewhere.

Sella was being attended to as well: Ana had rushed over, and a flurry of combs, bits of jewellery, and last minute applications of scent and makeup were offered as she walked through the room, though Sella accepted none of it. She was always perfectly ready for their King. Women’s secrets, apparently.

Terrick was not neglected, though he didn’t need nearly as much attention as the others always seemed to - Sella excluded. A comb was run hastily through his hair to remove any tangles, and Basha’s hands brusquely smoothed away cat hair.

All three of the summoned arrived at the doorway at the same time, and Basha held it open for them. He mockingly bowed them through as the other concubines returned to their various diversions, though, without the accompaniment of music.

The curving staircase leading up was well lit, with a sort of magical glowing fungus encased in glass bottles that hung from the ceiling. They never flickered or lost their brightness, and Terrick always wondered how long they’d been there, in the private passageway that led to their King’s bedchamber. Decades? Centuries? Even magical fungus must die sometime, right?

The girls were speaking in low tones behind him as they climbed the three flights to the doors leading into the royal bedchambers.

“His Majesty must have something special planned. Three of us?” Sella was speculating. She loved to speculate. “Perhaps we’re to put on a show?”

“Perhaps. It’s good then, that I was called.” Marshona was unfazed by the situation. She was always calm, never out of sorts. “I know just how to make you squeal.”

The girls giggled together, and Terrick smiled. He knew just how to make Sella squeal too. Perhaps they could both attend to her – working together, surely he and Marshona could make her scream.

They continued up the spiral staircase, to the landing before the bedchamber doors. Terrick straightened his vest and glanced over his shoulder to make sure the others were ready.  He then opened the door leading to the King’s chambers.

The bedchamber was as sparsely decorated as ever. Their King had simple tastes when it came to decor, though he never stinted himself. There were a few simple, elegant tapestries on the walls, small vases and busts on pedestals, and minimal carvings on the furniture. The large bed was draped with solid red velvet, no ornate thread of gold embroidery or elaborate brocades. The sheets were pure white satin, and the furniture all made from a tree with a dark reddish wood that had gone extinct centuries ago. Rich, but modest.

Plush rugs gave way underneath Terrick’s bare feet as he moved into the room. Sella and Marshona moved in behind him, stepping to either side, as the door swung silently closed. Their King was standing beside the bed, dressed only in sleeping pants.

He was tall and strong, muscled from sparring with his guards on a daily basis. His long brown hair was pulled back in braids at the temples, hanging down his tanned back in a chocolate colored wave. His eyes were blue as the sky, and his smile as he turned to welcome his concubines was sly and amused as if he’d just told a joke.

Terrick bowed at the waist as the women curtsied.

“Good evening, Your Majesty.”

“My King.”

“How may we serve our King?”

They remained bent, awaiting their King’s acknowledgement.

The King waited a moment before stepping forward. He moved to Sella first, raising her up and bending slightly to kiss her forehead. Stepping past Terrick, he pulled Marshona to her feet, brushing a lock of her lovely reddish-gold curls from her face. He then took Terrick by the hand, drawing him into an upright stance as well.

There was a movement from the bed, and Terrick’s eyes darted over as he straightened. The Queen sat forward, looking at them curiously. She had been hidden by the draperies as she reclined upon the pillows, and none of them had realized that she was there.

This was a surprise. The Queen knew about the Royal Harem, but she had never called upon them for their services. The Harem had never before been called to entertain the royal couple together – when the Queen graced her husband’s bed, she had always chosen to do so alone. 

“Your Grace,” Terrick twitched a hand at Sella to get her attention as he bowed towards the bed. The King was between him and Marshona, or he would have warned her too. Sella noticed the Queen then and quickly dropped into a curtsy.

“My Queen.”

“Your Majesty,” Marshona was quick to pay her respects as well, though she took it a step further. “We are honored.”

“Are they all like this, Alric?” The queen shifted on the bed, moving forward until she could see everyone clearly. She was dressed in a short silk nightdress, her bright red hair pulled back into a simple braid as if ready for sleep. “So perfectly deferential?”

“Only at first, my dear. Stand, all of you.” The King placed a hand on the small of Terrick’s back as Terrick straightened, and urged him forward. He was escorting Marshona by the arm, and pulled Sella along with a glance and a nod of the head towards the bed. “They love me, and love to show their respect.”

“Do they truly? Or do they only pander to you, feeding you lines to stoke your ego and better perform their role?” She looked at Terrick with a small smile. “I'm sorry, I don’t mean to seriously imply that any of you are dishonest. My husband and I were being coy with each other just before you arrived, and I’m still feeling facetious. I mean no offence.”

“Of course, none is taken, Your Grace.” Terrick gave another small bow, straightening to face the Queen. “And may I extend my congratulations to you? I believe it’s not yet midnight, and still your birthday.”

She laughed merrily, clapping her hands together as she tilted her head to regard him. The women hurriedly wished her well, curtsying again. “You may indeed. Thank you, all of you.”

The King had moved aside as they spoke to the Queen, and he returned with two wine glasses. He passed these to Marshona and Sella, before stepping back to the table and returning with one for Terrick. The Queen reached for her goblet on the nightstand, handing one to the King as he returned. They all drank, toasting the Queen.

“It is this occasion which prompted me to call for you,” The King’s hand was again on Terrick’s slender back, meandering up underneath his vest. Fingers brushed lightly across bare skin, sending gooseflesh down Terrick's arms and legs. Terrick took a slow, deep breath. “I have finally convinced my wife to avail herself of the services of the Royal Harem, yet she finds herself modestly refraining from a decision.”

The Queen shifted uncomfortably on the bed, cutting her eyes to the side as a slight blush rose to her cheeks.

“I asked her,” The King had set his goblet down and moved behind Terrick, the hand on his back snaking around Terrick’s side to graze across his abdomen. The other hand had risen to Terrick’s shoulder, brushing back stray locks of hair before settling gently around Terrick’s throat. He could feel the taller man's erection pressed firmly against his back. “What she would prefer for her first time. A man? A woman? Both? And yet she persisted in not making a choice.”

Sella had deftly removed the wineglass from Terrick’s hand as he was embraced, thriftily finishing it off before setting it on a nearby table. Marshona had moved around their King and Terrick, standing beside Sella with an arm around her waist.

The Queen was watching her husband intently, mouth slightly parted. She cut her eyes to the side, glancing at the women before looking back to her husband and the elven man he held before himself. She swallowed visibly.

“She eventually told me to decide for her, covering her face like a blushing schoolgirl,” The King teased as he pressed very gently on Terrick’s neck, urging the slender man to lay his head back on the King’s shoulder. The King dropped a gentle biting kiss on the throat thus presented to him, eliciting a gasp from Terrick. He glanced back up at his wife. “I asked myself: what has she never experienced? It is her birthday, so it should be something new to her. So I choose for her to be attended by Sella and Marshona tonight, while I entertain myself with Terrick.”

Terrick breathed out a ragged breath, pleased. He enjoyed the attentions of either man or woman, but couldn’t deny the effect that this man, specifically, had on him. He would do anything for his King – and his King knew it.


© Copyright 2019 JadeChey. All rights reserved.

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