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Sin & The Prince

Category: Gay Male
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“Sin! Sinclair! Where the hell is that boy at?”

The Master’s younger son stood in the doorway with a scowl twisting his handsome face as he looked for the slave, but the beautiful young man wasn’t among the servants and slaves hard at work in the kitchen. Stepping into the room, he cut a path straight to the head cook, ignoring the scurrying men and women darting around him as they went about the frantic preparations for the evening meal—as lower servants and slaves, they were beneath his notice.

“Remy!” he bellowed, and the massive man dressed in stained apron and hat turned with a scowl—the scowl melting away at the sight of the Master’s son.

“Lord Julian! How may I be of service?” he asked, wiping his hands on the edge of his apron, forcing a smile. Julian’s expression darkened.

“Where is that boy?” he demanded, and the cook’s eyes darted away.

“Which boy might you be inquiring about, my lord?” he asked. Sweat stood out on his forehead. The young lord’s eye narrowed, and he took a step closer to the cook.

“You know who I’m talking about. Sinclair. Where is he? He’s not in the gardens, nor at the woodpile, and the stable hands haven’t seen him all day. That leaves the kitchen. And yet I don’t see him here either. So I want to know—where is he?” Julian asked, leaning forward till he was almost nose-to-nose with the other man.

Remy’s eyes darted from one side to the other, avoiding the young master’s gaze, and he licked his lips nervously.

“M-my lord, the boy—well, he spilled the cauldron. It made a fine mess…” he trailed off when the younger man’s eyes narrowed further.

“Where. Is. He? I won’t ask you again,” he said softly, a dangerous edge to his voice. The cook gulped and pointed a shaking finger at the door leading to the cold room, where meats and butter and milk were stored.

“I put him in there, my lord. He’s been in there for the past three hours.”

“You punished him yourself, Remy?” Julian asked quietly, and the man only hesitated for a brief second before nodding, his double chins wagging.

“I see. I will tell my father of this, and I’m sure he’ll want to have a little discussion with you on the subject,” the lord snapped, and whirled on one booted heel to stalk across the tiled floor to the cold room door.

He yanked the heavy portal open, and frigid air spilled into the overheated kitchen. He didn’t notice the cold, dressed as he was in warm hose and fur-lined tunic—winters in this part of the country were always damnably cold—but the naked young man bound to a meat hook certainly did.

His pale skin looked almost waxy in the dim light spilling into the room through the partially opened doorway, his lips tinted blue. He wasn’t shivering, having gone far past that point nearly an hour ago. Julian shook his head at the pitiful sight and strolled forward, circling the slave.

His back was crisscrossed with purple-blue wheals, stretching from shoulder almost to the knee, concentrated across the muscular globes of his ass. Julian stretched out one hand and prodded a particularly nasty welt, and the young man groaned, flinching away from his touch. A smile curved the Lordling’s mouth, his dark eyes taking on a cruel light as he strolled back around the slave.

“Did he use you as well?” he asked. Sin glowered at him, and his questioner sighed—then cracked him across the face with the back of his hand. “I asked you a question, boy, and I expect an answer,” he growled. The slave’s eyes narrowed—poison green irises framed by thick, silky lashes longer than a girl’s—and he nodded once, that finely shaped mouth pressing into a flat line.

“Just Remy?” Julian asked. The slave paused before nodding again, and the lord slapped him once more, grabbing a fistful of silky black curls, yanking Sin’s head back. “Don’t lie to me,” he hissed, jerking his head back further.

“No, not just Remy,” he answered, his voice low and hoarse. Julian released his hair and stepped back, eyeing him thoughtfully.

“I see. Well then, Father will discover who’s been naughty, and they’ll be punished appropriately. Right now I’ve need for you—when I’m finished you may return to the kitchen and help with the meal,” he finally said. Sin’s eyes narrowed, but he kept his mouth shut—and Julian was pleased. The gorgeous young man had a rapier tongue on him, and they’ve yet to beat it out of him. Maybe a few hours in the cold room had actually done him some good.

Briefly he debated—should he leave him hanging and take him, or did he want him on the floor or bent over the worktable? He sighed. Better take him down—the slave was three inches taller than his own 5’10” height, and standing on a box or crate to reach that firm little ass would be extremely undignified.

Pulling a knife from the belt at his waist, he reached up and began sawing through the thick rope holding Sin’s wrists to the hook, bracing himself as the rope parted and the slave’s body fell against him. While he was shorter, Julian outweighed the other man by a good thirty pounds, and was able to hold him easily until he could stand unassisted. And when the slave straightened, Julian was very pleased to note that those long green eyes were downcast, as a proper slave’s gaze should be in front of his master.

“Lean over the table and don’t move. I don’t want to hear a sound from those pretty lips—or I’ll gag you for a week. Do you understand me?” Julian demanded, and Sin nodded, turning and laying his chest on the aforementioned table, stretching his arms out to either side to hold onto the edges.

Julian fumbled at the tapes fastening his hose to his tunic, freeing himself, and reached out, spreading the whipped cheeks of the slave’s ass to expose the bud of his anus. It was reddened, and a probing finger discovered that the channel was still lubricated with semen. Jaw tightening in annoyance, he thrust his cock deep—and Sin’s chest came off the table, a groan forcing its way past his clenched teeth. A smug smile curved the lord’s mouth at the sound—he knew there was no way the slave could remain silent, he was a most vocal toy—and sheathed himself to the hilt. His cock twitched as he visualized the slave’s mouth stretched around a wide plug, and he withdrew slowly before slamming back inside, grinding himself as deeply as he could.

Sin wanted to rip the hateful device out of his mouth and throw it to the ground, but he knew if he did, the punishment would be severe. Although Julian was younger than he by two years, he was forced to obey. He had no choice. His father had owed the Master a great deal of money, and when he’d died, the Master had taken possession of everything—including Sin. He was forced to serve in the home he’d grown up in, working at whatever chore he was given, as well as serving the desires of the Master and his two spoiled sons. Punishment came often, and quite was severe no matter if it was the smallest of infractions—and he had no choice but to endure. If he ran away, he would be captured and turned back over to the Master—the Crown was most severe when it came to fulfillment of debt.

For five long years he’d been a slave, and had long since given up hope of ever repaying his father’s debt to the Master. The man could keep him for the rest of his life, and no one would intervene, or much care.

It had taken him a long time to come to grips with his new station in life, and the horrifying rush of arousal that flooded through him every time the Master or one of his sons used him or punished him, but he had learned how to cope with it, learned how to embrace his nature.

His father had died when he was 16, and up until then his sexual experiences had been pleasant dalliances with the young men and women of the district. When the Master had enslaved him and used him, it had been quite a shock to find himself almost craving his owner’s rough touch, craving the whip and the lash and the cane. He had accepted his body’s desires, but still wished for something else, something different. To the Master and his sons, he was merely a toy to be used carelessly and callously, forgotten when not in use. The dogs were treated better than he was.

Sin’s eyebrows slashed downward at the thought, and he would have ground his teeth if the hard rubber gag hadn’t been forcing his jaws apart. He shook his head—there was no point in thinking wistful thoughts of a different life. He would never escape the Master.

Dietrich, Julian’s older brother, checked the leather cuffs fastening Sin’s wrists to his ankles, making sure that he couldn’t get loose, no matter how much he struggled. Satisfied with his work, he picked up the thick dildo he had just purchased and pressed it against the slave’s well-used orifice, grinning to himself at the sound of the younger man’s muffled groan.

The black rubber was much larger than the slave was used to, and he’d carefully lubed it up so it stretched rather than tore its new home. Of course, he’d used the special oil that his father had found for him, and regretfully wished that he could stay to watch it take effect—but there was the Prince’s birthday ball to take into consideration, and only a few hours in which to prepare. The lovely Sin was just going have to suffer all alone until Dietrich came back to take care of him. Stepping back to admire his handiwork, he let his gaze travel over the stripped body of the slave. All that creamy ivory skin, marked black and blue and red from the cat—the sleek muscles in his back and thighs already beginning to tense as the oil began to work on his rectum. A knock sounded at the door, and he turned away to answer it, smiling brightly up at his father and younger brother standing in the hall. Julian’s dark eyes narrowed at the sight of that smile, and his father lifted one black eyebrow in amusement.

“Playing with your toys again, Dietrich?” the older man asked. His elder son stepped aside so his sire could see, and the amusement turned into an outright laugh at the sight of Sin bound helplessly on the bed. “Those stripes should last a good week. I trust they’re not all the kitchen staffs’ work, no?” he asked.

“Of course not, Papa,” his eldest son answered. The younger of the two brothers shot his sibling a filthy look.

“You’re not leaving him like this all night, are you?” Julian asked, entering behind his father to pace around the side of the bed. His fingers curled in the slave’s thick hair, pulling his head back to examine his face. Sin squeezed his eyes closed, but the younger man could still see the tracks of his tears on his face.

“No. He has chores to do. Maybe two hours at the most. After I dress I’ll take the dildo out—the oil should have worked its way deep inside by then. By the time we arrive home from the Prince’s ball he’ll be desperate for relief.”

His father nodded approvingly at this. He strolled around the bed, standing opposite Julian, and the youngster released his grip on the slave’s hair. The Master lifted his head, smiling down into his face, stroking calloused fingers down one lean cheek.

“Behave yourself tonight Sinclair, and maybe I’ll reward you, hmmm?” he murmured, tracing his distended lower lip. The slave squeezed his eyes closed again, his expression a study in suffering, and his Master released him, already moving back towards the door.

“Come, children, Anton waits to dress us,” the older man said, and his sons followed him out the door obediently.

Sin closed his eyes and clenched his asscheeks together, hoping for relief from that infernal oil Dietrich had used on him. Without the dildo spreading him, that itch deep within his rectum was almost maddening. By the time the Master and his two sons arrived back at the manor, he would be begging for relief—which is exactly what Dietrich had planned.

Steeling himself against it, he dug his pitchfork deep into the hay, forking it into the empty stall and spreading it around. He loved working in the stables, the scent of horses and linseed oil and leather all blending together in one heady scent. He remembered his father smelling like this, long ago before he’d gotten so deeply in debt, and he clung stubbornly to those childhood memories.

Bare to the waist, the sweat rolled down his body as he worked by lantern-light, his muscles rippling smoothly beneath his skin as he scooped and spread. He’d already chopped three cords of wood out back, and mucked out the four stalls and laid fresh hay—this was the fifth and the last—and as soon as he was done here he could relax for the rest of the night. Truth be told, he was mildly surprised that the Master hadn’t set him more chores to occupy him—but if he were to serve Dietrich tonight, he could use all the rest he could get.

The elder of the two brothers was devious and almost childlike in his cruelties. Julian’s tastes ran more towards buggery and whipping, while Dietrich was most inventive, taking more after his father. The Master had trained Sin at first—three hard years spent under his tutelage made the young man almost grateful for Julian’s simple pleasures. Dietrich had only recently taken a notice of the slave, and Sin privately thought his interest stemmed more from thwarting his brother than any true desire. The elder of the Master’s two sons usually went for the more heavily built men that worked the fields; Sin was tall and lean with an almost pretty face.

Lost in thought, he jumped at the sound of a scraping footstep, whirling with the pitchfork in hand—and stopped dead at the sight of the elegant dandy leaning against the open door leading outside.

A slim cheroot clamped between even white teeth, the intruder studied the young man with button-black eyes and a grin. His lean form was clad in the first stare of fashion—rich crimson silk doublet heavily embroidered with black and gold thread, silk hose of the same crimson color clinging to sleekly muscled legs, and black suede half-boots folded at the ankle. A large cavalier’s hat in matching red perched atop his jet-black curls, the black plume rising from one side swaying in the cool breeze.

Sin was so surprised he could only gape—grateful that the Master had ordered the hated gag to be removed from his mouth.

“Can I help you?” he asked, and the stranger’s smile widened even further in his darkly tanned face.

“I believe the question, my dear boy, is ‘Can I help you?'” he answered, taking his little cigar from his mouth with lean fingers. The young man frowned, and the stranger laughed, sweeping him a courtier’s bow—leg extended outward, his hat now in his hand. When he straightened he was still smiling faintly, an odd light dancing in his eyes. “Your fairy godfather, at your service,” he said.

Sin’s frown turned to a scowl. “Right. As if I believe that.”

He turned away and dug the sharp tines of the fork into the hay, grunting a little beneath the weight as he pitched the load into the stall.

A hand traced a welt on his back, and the young man jumped as if scalded, whirling once more, pitchfork raised. His strange visitor grabbed the wooden handle of the implement and wrenched it from Sin’s hands, tossing it across the aisle to clatter on the ground. He was still smiling, but those dark eyes were lit with an odd green light.

Sin was nobly born, but he had still been raised in the country, where tales of the fae folk abounded. His father had scoffed anytime he heard mention of the weird folk, but he had always been careful not to mock the taleteller. The dead man’s son abruptly realized that the man standing before him was not human, and goose bumps abruptly rose across his skin. The stranger’s head tilted to one side as he studied the human male, and he smiled again.

“Ah, good. You believe me now, yes?” He rubbed his hands together, then separated them—and a green glow surrounded his fingers. Sin backed up a step at the sight.

“What do you want?” he whispered fearfully, and that maddening itch inside him stopped.

“Like I said, I’m your fairy godfather. We needn’t get into details, but I’ve heard your wishes. You want away from these people, yes? Escape from your Master and his sons?” the creature asked, tilting his head to one side, much like an inquisitive bird. Sin nodded slowly, and was rewarded with a grin.

“Well then, that’s what I’m here for. The Prince’s birthday ball is tonight, and I’m sending you there to catch his interest.”

“W-what? How will that help me?” the slave asked, confused. The stranger’s smile only grew broader.

“The Prince is seeking a mate. And my brethren and I all agree that you’re that mate, of course. You’ll pique his interest, and he’ll come for you, freeing you from these people. Simple really.”

Sin backed up another step. “And how am I supposed to catch his interest? Or go to the ball period? I can’t simply go, not like this.” He swept his hand across his front, shaking his head. His fairy godfather shook his head.

“It’s a masked ball—you needn’t worry about your Master or his sons recognizing you. And your Prince’s tastes run to—well, we’ll just say he’s just like your Master, except kinder, and looking for a partner, not a toy. Now come, time’s a wasting, and we need to prepare you. Turn around,” he ordered, and Sin did as he was told, his head reeling in shock.

The creature kicked his legs apart, and pushed the young man down till he was bent at the waist.

“Sorry for this,” he murmured, and Sin was about to ask what he meant when he felt something cool and slick pressing against his anus.

The hand on his back firmed, even as the object was slipped deep inside him. A delicious feeling swirled up from his rectum, and Sin felt his cock harden, a low moan tearing from him at the stretch and fullness of the object distending him. And suddenly the fae creature’s hand was gone from his back, and he could stand.

He turned carefully, biting his lip as the object pressed against his insides, unaware that a flush burned high along his cheekbones. His eyes glittered brightly in their frame of lashes, and the creature smiled and nodded his approval.

“Beautiful. The Prince won’t be able to resist you,” he murmured, and waved his hands, his voice rising and falling in liquid syllables.

Sin blinked as he felt his skin dry, fine cloth form out of nothingness around him—and when he looked down, he was astonished to find himself garbed in silk and velvets. He looked back up, and his fairy godfather was smiling slightly, studying him appraisingly.

“Yes, quite nice. Here,” he said, holding out a half-mask, and Sin took it wordlessly, tying it around his face.

“How will I get there?” he asked, and the creature’s smile widened again.

“Why, you will ride of course.”

He pointed to a mouse scurrying across the floor and spoke in that liquid tongue once more—and the mouse shimmered, changed. Where the tiny creature had stood was now a richly caparisoned black horse. The beautiful creature shook its head, snorting, and the bells sewn to the bridle jingled merrily. Sin blinked in astonishment, hardly believing his eyes.

“You must be back by midnight, Sin. The clothes will disappear, and the horse will revert to its true form,” his godfather instructed, and the young man nodded, still staring at the horse. The saddle gleamed in the dim light of the lantern. He turned his head to thank his benefactor, but he was gone, vanished into the night. Shaking his head in wonder, Sin put a booted foot in a stirrup and pulled himself up into the saddle.

The Palace was brightly lit, and carriages lined the drive as far as the eye could see.

Sin dismounted from his horse and glanced up at the clock tower in the square—it was only nine. Three hours till his gift disappeared.

Crossing the courtyard, he mounted the stairs leading up to the ballroom, his stride confident and assured. The servant at the door stared at him in open-mouthed shock, forgetting to ask his name as the young man brushed past him and into the whirl of color below.

Sin was unaware of the vision he made as he plunged into the throng gathered at the edges of the ballroom.

His eyes gleamed behind the mask, color flushed high cheekbones, and his mouth was reddened from the ride. His gait was almost predatory as the dildo inside him shifted, pressing and rubbing in an almost maddening way. His lean body was clad all in black, emphasizing his sleek muscles as he strolled through the press of Lords and Ladies in search of his destiny.

Prince Charming—Chance to his friends and intimates—was bored. He’d danced with Ladies; he’d danced with Lords. And not a single one of his partners had attracted him in the slightest.

He was just about to give up when he spotted the slim young man moving through the crowd, the unrelieved black of his clothing making the bright colors around him look almost garish. The ring his fairy godfather had given him earlier warmed around the base of his cock, gripping him almost like a lover’s fingers might. This was the one. He knew it.

Moving away from the laughing courtiers that surrounded him, he glided through the crowd to his chosen one, catching the sleeve of the young man’s doublet as he passed.

Green eyes met warm honey, and it seemed as if their surroundings faded away.

“May I have this dance?” Chance asked, and the man nodded, licking his lips. Sweeping him into a waltz, they whirled out onto the floor.

Sin couldn’t look away from his partner’s smiling face—that lush mouth, those cat-like eyes. Amber colored hair spilled around that delicately boned face, over the top of the white half-mask he wore, and the young man’s fingers fairly itched to see if it was as soft as it looked.

The Prince held him close, his leanly muscled body in its white doublet and hose a perfect foil for Sin’s black clad form. They molded together as if they were one, and he allowed himself to be swept away.

Chance danced his prize to a half concealed door across the room, slipping out of the ballroom as the final note of the waltz sounded. The two men stepped apart, somewhat awkwardly, and his black-clad mate bowed.

“My Prince,” he began, his voice husky, strangely hoarse, and Chance pressed his fingers against those ripe, reddened lips.

“Shhh—Chance, my love. Call me Chance. Do you have a name?”

His partner nodded, licked his lips again. “Sin—Sinclair.”

“Ah, Sin. I like that. Take off your mask, please,” he ordered, and long ivory fingers fumbled at the velvet ties. Those elegant hands drew the embroidered fabric away from his face, and the Prince caught his breath at the masculine beauty that was revealed. He did away with his own face covering, and the two stared at each other in silence, both fascinated by the other’s perfection.

The Prince—Chance—moved first, unbuttoning Sin’s doublet, easing it off his broad shoulders gently. His long, slender fingers undid the tapes holding up his hose, and the slave allowed him to strip them down his legs, kicking off his boots and steeping from the form-fitting silk that had hugged his legs. He remembered the dildo buried inside him as it seemed to swell and pulse—just as it had when Chance’s hand had gripped his arm in the ballroom—and flushed. The Prince stilled, cradled his soon-to-be lover’s face in one hand.

“What is it? What’s wrong?” he asked gently, and Sin’s color deepened further. Instead of explaining—how did one explain this precisely?—he turned.

He heard the Prince’s swiftly indrawn breath and squeezed his eyes shut.

The touch, when it came, was infinitely gentle, tracing over the long weals covering his back, descending to the firm curve of his ass.

“You’ve been ill-used, my love,” the Prince murmured softly, and Sin’s muscles clenched as he touched a particularly nasty bruise. The pleasure as the dildo shifted nearly made his knees buckle, and Chance’s arms slipped around him, holding him up as he found the base of the object buried deep inside him.

A soft chuckled split the air and Sin found himself turned, held loosely against the Prince’s body.

Those soft lips pressed against his, and he moaned quietly as Chance’s tongue slipped into his mouth.

He found the other man’s hair was indeed as soft as it looked as he twined his fingers through it; his mouth hungry on the Prince’s, and a soft whimper escaped him as he was pushed away.

The Prince’s eyes were narrowed on his face, a smile curving that delicious mouth as he unfastened his clothes with shaking hands, revealing a body nearly identical to his own.

Smooth ivory skin only a shade darker than the slave’s sheathed rippling muscles, and Sin was astonished to see two bright gold ring piercing the Prince’s flat little nipples. He forced his gaze downward, traveling over the washboard muscles on the Prince’s stomach down lower to the amber curls surrounding the rigid thrust of his cock—and his eyes went wide at the sight of the ornate glass ring circling the base of that upstanding organ.

Chance grinned at the other man’s astonishment, wrapping one hand around his cock and stroking—and those gorgeous light green eyes followed the movement, his face flushing even more. He watched as his chosen mate wet his lips, lifted those absinthe-colored eyes back to his face—and the Prince grinned.

“Fairy godfathers have rather strange notions, don’t you think?”

And Sin’s eyes went even wider, his mouth dropping open. “Y-you too?” he managed to stammer, and Chance nodded slowly, stepping closer as he gripped the ring circling him, pulling it off.

His own godfather had put it on him, warning that it could only be removed in the presence of his mate, his true mate—and the Prince was glad that it had responded to this man. He was beautiful, and a bit shy—and absolutely perfect.

“Turn around Sin, and lean over that couch. I think you’ve had that in you quite long enough, yes?” he asked, and his gorgeous lover did as he was told, folding himself over the arm of the settee behind him. He spread his legs, and Chance took a moment to smooth his hand over that sleek striped skin, frowning at the thought of what had caused such extensive markings. The boy had a Master, that was for sure—but the Prince grinned as he realized that Sin was all his now. The only marks that would be left on that sleek ivory flesh would come from his whip, his paddle—and any other instrument he could think of. And he would never use him so roughly—that fine skin should be reddened, not bruised.

Shaking off his thoughts, he concentrated wholly on the here and now. He parted the sleek swell of his lover’s ass, gripped the base of the dildo and carefully pulled. Sin’s whole body shook as it eased out of his hole, and a low moan filled the air as he shuddered helplessly, glancing over his shoulder at the Prince, those beautiful eyes darkening, pleading.

Still holding the cock ring, Chance slipped his arm around his lover’s hips, slipped the smooth glass over the head of his heavy sex. He leaned forward, his body wrapping around the other man’s, his mouth on level with his ear.

“Mine, yes? As I am yours?” he whispered, and Sin turned his head, lips grazing the Prince’s.

“Yes,” he sighed, and the Prince slipped the ring down the long, thick shaft, his mouth opening over his lover’s, kissing him deeply.

Sin squirmed against him as desire flashed through him, a different kind of desire than that awful, sickening feeling that overcame him beneath Julian or Dietrich or the Master’s hands. This felt clean, and pure, and roused him like nothing else ever had—not even in the idyllic days before his father had died.

Chance let him up, only to tumble him back over the arm of the settee, their long bodies tangled together as their mouths sought and met. Their hands skimmed over each other’s bodies, touching and caressing and simply learning, and Sin strained to get closer to his lover.

And finally the Prince knelt up between his legs, Sin’s thighs draped over his, and guided the head of his heavy cock to the ring of muscle between his cheeks.

Their eyes met, locked, and the Prince pressed himself inside, Sin opening around him with a groan of pure bliss.

Chance caught his breath at the feel of his mate closing around him like a velvet glove—hot and tight and so damn perfect he almost lost it right then and there.

But he wanted to enjoy this first time, take it slow, and he did.

The Prince rode his lover slowly, his hands griping the other man’s hips tight to hold him down, rising and falling in his body with exquisite care.

Sin arched up off the couch, dragging Chance down to him, his mouth on his shoulder, his neck, his jaw before finally finding his lips, tongue surging inside as he ground himself down on his lover’s cock, and the Prince couldn’t hold back any longer. His grip tightened, and his thrusts sped up. Sin writhed on his cock, his breath coming in pants, wordless cries—and Chance felt his lover’s seed spurt between them as his own climax swept over him, spilling deep into his mate’s heat.

The clock in the square began to chime the hour, and Sin’s eyes went wide at the sound.

“Faster. Take me!” he begged, panting, not knowing how time could have passed so quickly.

He was on his hands and knees, his lover behind him driving into him harder and harder. His heart galloped in his chest, and his orgasm shattered through him—his ringed cock spurting as he felt Chance’s seed boiling up into his ass.

He bolted, grabbing his clothes and darting from the room, yanking on boots and doublet as he ran, stumbling towards an open door and the cold night waiting outside.

Dimly, through the thundering in his ears, he heard his lover shout his name—but he kept running.

The clock was chiming five as he found his horse and pulled himself up, wincing with pain as his bare flesh rubbed against leather. The groom holding the stallion’s head started, and he grabbed the reins, nudging his mouth into motion as the clock struck seven.

He leaned over the horse’s neck, riding hell for leather down the road leading away from the palace, his every thought in making it home before the horse changed back to a mouse and his finery back to homespun trousers.

Every beat of the horse’s hooves against the road sent a shock through him, his sore ass protesting such treatment, but he ignored it, urging his mouth to go faster.

He made it to the edge of the clearing before the stables of the Master’s house as the clock struck its twelfth note, and found himself tumbling to the ground as his fairy godfather’s magic ran out. The beautiful horse changed back to a mouse, scurrying off into the long grass. His doublet and boots turned back to rough cotton and worn leather.

Midnight had come and gone, and he was back where he belonged.

Picking himself off and dusting the dirt from his chest and legs, he stumbled up to the house, trying to ignore the tears pricking at his eyes.

Chance was frantic.

His lover was gone, run off, and all he had was a name.

There had been hundreds at the ball the night before, of all the best families, and even pouring over the invitation list had netted him no answers. There wasn’t a single Sinclair on that list.

He eyed the heavy glass dildo sitting on the velvet cushion before him, and traced a fingertip over one of the prominent veins, imaging he could feel the heat of his lover’s ass—and sighed. He had no choice now; he was going to have to visit every single family on that list in order to find his mate. Someone, surely, would have heard of him.

Sin closed his eyes and felt the tears streak down his face as the Master himself wielded the cane.

It slashed across his thighs, cracked against his ass, flicked over his still-ringed cock hard enough to make his entire body quake against his restraints.

The Master had been furious to find that the last stall in the stables had been unfinished, his slave dead asleep in the tiny room they allowed him at the back of the house.

The older man had stripped his trousers off and found the ring, still snug around the base of his cock, and tried to remove it, but it wouldn’t budge. His cruel fingers had delved between the tender ass cheeks and found him slick with cum. And his rage had ignited.

Julian and Dietrich had dragged him into the cold room and bound him to a hook. His legs had been spread and tied off to rings set in the floor. And the Master had begun his punishment.

First had been the cat o’nines, then a leather whip.

He paused every now and again to demand a name, but Sin stubbornly refused to talk. He wouldn’t sully his magical night with the Prince by sharing it with his owner.

Dietrich and Julian watched as their toy was beaten, and even Dietrich was amazed at his father’s cruelty. But neither said a word, too afraid of bringing the Master’s wrath down upon their own heads.

A commotion sounded in the kitchen, and the Master paused mid-stroke, cocking his head to one side and listening.

“Julian, find out what that is. And if it’s nothing, remind the kitchen staff that they can be next to taste my wrath,” he snapped. His younger son nodded and slipped out the door, only to appear a moment later.

His dark eyes were lit with excitement, his color high. “Father! The Prince is here! He wants to speak with you!”

The Master’s eyes narrowed thoughtfully. “Does he now? I wonder why. No matter. Boys, let’s go greet our Prince, shall we? This one can rest a moment.”

He dropped the cane to the floor, smacked Sin’s ass sharply to get his attention.

“Be quiet, or it will be far worse for you when I come back,” he growled. The boy nodded, let his head fall back to his chest as exhaustion overcame him. He was too lost inside himself to hear Julian’s news, only caring that the punishment had stopped, at least for now.

Chance looked Lord Evram up and down, then looked at the man’s two sons. Neither one was his mate, but the dairymaid he’d met in the lane had pointed him to this manse.

“My Prince, what a surprise! How may I serve?” Evram asked, sweeping his sovereign a low bow. The two young men flanking him followed suit, the younger of the two glancing up through his pale hair with shining eyes.

“I’m looking for a young man,” he began, and the younger one licked his lips, his eagerness almost comical. “A young man named Sin—Sinclair.”

Lord Evram eyes narrowed fractionally—if Chance hadn’t been watching him so closely, he might have missed it.

“There’s no one by that name here, my prince. Just my sons—Julian and Dietrich,” he said smoothly. One of the kitchen staff, clustered in a knot at the far end of the room, choked, and Chance’s gaze went to the man, his golden eyes narrowing. The fat man, wearing a cook’s apron and hat, flushed scarlet beneath the Prince’s scrutiny. Lord Evram ignored him, but a muscle in his cheek began ticking.

“Funny, I was directed here. A local lass told me that there was a green eyed, black-haired young man here by that name—in fact, she informed me that his father used to own this estate, until he died and you took it over in lieu of payment on debts owed you. And that the boy was now serving here as a common slave,” Chance said, fighting back the fury that threatened to overwhelm him yet again at the thought. His Sin, serving these bastards. He had questioned plenty of the locals, and they’d all told him tales of Evram’s cruelties towards the rightful heir. He’d heard how Evram and his sons beat him, and used him, and offered him to their friends. And how Sin had quietly accepted his fate, doing as he was ordered.

The Lord was shaking his head. “She lied,” he said flatly.

And Chance heard a noise coming from the closed door behind the three, his eyes going narrow. It sounded as if someone were crying.

“Guards, open that door,” he snapped, and the soldiers behind him swept forward to obey.

Sin thought he heard his lover’s voice, muffled and indistinct, coming from the kitchen, and began to sob.

Why the hell had he run from the palace? He’d left the man that was meant to be his, a man powerful enough to protect him, and had gone right back to the life he’d sought to escape in the first place.

The shame of being a debt-slave, of being nothing more than a toy for the Master and his sons, and a very real fear of seeing his Prince’s face twist in disgust when midnight struck and his godfather’s magic disappeared had driven him to run. And now it seemed that he had lost his mind as well.

Chance strode across the room, brushing past the Lord and his two sons to get to the door. His soldiers were staring inside, their expressions varying from shock to pity to disgust.

He came to the door and looked into the gloomy interior, and the fury he had been containing finally burst free at the sight of his battered lover hanging like so much meat form a hook, his beautiful body a mass of cuts and bruises and lacerations.

“Get him down, and arrest Lord Evram!” he snapped, aching to go to Sin, take him in his arms. But he was afraid to touch him, afraid to hurt him any further.

Soldiers closed in on the three nobles, taking their arms and binging them securely. Lord Evram’s expression was a study of astonishment.

“What? Why? My Prince, you cannot do this!” he sputtered. Chance smiled slowly, icily at the man.

“But I can. You harmed the Prince’s Consort, my lord, and that is akin to harming the Prince himself. Me, in other words.”

“Consort! How the hell can he be your Consort?” the younger son cried, and Chance looked at him slowly. The boy didn’t look quite so eager now. In fact, he looked downright scared.

“He became my Consort last night, at my birthday ball. He wears my ring,” he answered calmly. The older man’s expression darkened.

“He is my property!” he snarled, and the Prince shook his head.

“I’m afraid not. Not anymore.”

He stepped aside as the soldiers carried his lover’s limp body from the room, holding up a hand to stop them. He leaned over Sin, touched his face with gentle fingers, and those thick black eyelashes fluttered, lifted so that astonishingly green irises were visible. If he hadn’t been so angry, the expression on his mate’s face would have been comical.

“AM I dreaming?” he asked in that husky, slightly hoarse voice Chance had grown to love, and the Prince smiled, shook his head.

“No, love, I’m real. You’re safe now. In a weeks’ time you’ll be crowned my Consort. And you’ll spend the rest of your life with me. Mine, yes?” he said, and that swollen mouth twitched in the tiniest of smiles.

“Yours. As you’re mine,” he murmured, and Chance leaned down, pressed his lips against his mate’s.

“Forever,” he whispered, and straightened. “Take Lord Evram and his sons to the dungeons, and my mate to my carriage,” he said, and the soldiers grinned, nodding their heads.

The ones surrounding the Lord and his sons prodded the men forward, and the ones carrying Sin carried him gently out into the winter sunshine.

A slender man dressed in crimson leaned against a tree, watching the soldiers emerge form the house. Beside him stood a man dressed in leaf green, one arm slung low around his companion’s hips.

“And they lived Happily Ever After,” the Prince’s fairy godfather said softly, and his companion laughed, pulling him close.

“Aye, and they lived Happily Ever After,” he agreed, leaning down to kiss his lover. Both Sin and Chance’s godfathers faded slowly from view, their words shimmering in the cold winter morning’s air.

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