Pairing: Liam Neeson/Orlando Bloom, minor Liam/Johnny Depp, plus a few other pair-ups among the supporting characters.
Rating: NC-17 overall
Summary: Slave Orlando's been taken and the kidnappers aren't interested in ransom. And of course Master Liam's thundering rage is only at the personal insult, that someone would disrespect him by daring to touch his property.
Disclaimer: I don't own anyone you recognize. I know nothing about their social lives or sexual activities, more's the pity. This is fiction, period. It is done as a labor of love and I make no money from it.
Notes: 1) Set in poisontaster's Kept Boy universe -- FAQ here. See Chapter 1 for more notes.
2) Finished! :D
Previous Chapters: One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten, Eleven, Twelve, Thirteen, Fourteen, Fifteen, Sixteen, Seventeen, Eighteen, Nineteen, Twenty, Twenty-One, Twenty-Two, Twenty-Three, Twenty-Four, Twenty-Five, Twenty-Six, Twenty-Seven, Twenty-Eight, Twenty-Nine, Thirty, Thirty-One, Thirty-Two, Thirty-Three
Liam filed away Thewlis's message on his computer and sat back to think. The rat was running, and the hole he was headed for was one where Liam didn't have any established contacts. He knew people in Germany, yes, but the chances of assassinating someone in an airport between gates, on less than a day's notice, were low to nil. And besides, Liam wanted to be there at the end.
He had to know someone whose reach extended into India. There weren't as many as there'd been in the past; when it became clear that the USNA's attempt to get India under its thumb by pressuring them to join the slave economy was going to fail, a lot of American businesses had pulled out of South Asia, fearing that the tension would boil over into war. Wars tended to cause hostile governments to seize enemy-owned assets within their territory, and that was never good for business. Liam's father had pulled out for just that reason, and had complained about the losses he'd taken in the process for years afterward.
Liam typed up a brief request for assistance with some business in Mumbai and sent it out to everyone on his list of theft victims. He didn't dare include any details over the net, but hopefully a glance at the TO: list would clue the recipients in as to what he needed help for. He turned his attention to other work while keeping an ear out for his e-mail signal, which came just over an hour later.
Lord Smith was similarly concise.
I can get that done. Send whatever you've got and I'll shoot it to my guy in Mumbai. What are we doing when we find him?
"Excellent," Liam muttered to himself.
Here's the info I got from Thewlis today, plus a photo only a few years old. Shouldn't be tough for a smart local to find a white man in an Indian city these days.
I want to know where he is. Once we've got him located, I'll be going over myself to wrap this up.
Works for me. Tell him hi from the rest of us, will you?
I see we still have thieves working the area. Cutting off the head's not going to slow them down.
I'll be sure to pass on everyone's greetings.
We cut off two heads, and once their inside contact has given me the last piece of info I need, I fully plan to convince him that continuing his activities would be inadvisable, so this particular group is likely dead in the water.
You're right, though, that it's still a problem. I'm sure there were others; this group preferred selling through "proper" channels and only went elsewhere as a last resort. There were enough items of interest in that one incident I mentioned at the meeting that there have to be other suppliers. I'd love to go after every one of them, but ending up there myself won't help anyone. All we can do, realistically, is be aware of the problem and take precautions with our assets.
Sucks, man. I've been keeping Tisha and the kids close to home, but they're getting restless. I definitely need to look into a bodyguard. I'm not going to keep my kids locked up whenever Jada and I don't have time to take them out ourselves.
If you're seriously looking for security, I recently met a man named Duncan down your way who's in that line. I checked him out and he has a solid reputation, and he seemed like a good man when we spoke. Here's his contact info if you're interested.
I'll check him out, thanks.
Thewlis turned over and stifled a moan. Even beaten, broken and drugged, he still had his instincts intact, and one was not to make any noise when he first woke up, especially in a strange place. He looked around, as much as he could without actually moving his head, and eventually he remembered where he was.
Some number of days ago, he'd dragged himself out of the burning wreck of Marty's garage and driven away through sheer force of will. He'd squinted into the night, trying to keep his concussion-fuzzy eyes on the dark road. The dizziness hadn't helped either, to say nothing of the headache, or the stabbing pain in his side where it'd turned out two ribs were broken. He'd known he couldn't be caught at the site of the explosion, though, nor anywhere near it, nor could his car be found there, so just crawling off into the bushes somewhere was out, even if he had any illusions that he wouldn't be found.
As it was, he'd been lucky as hell to get away and he still wasn't sure he'd gotten out clean. Marty's place was far enough from the nearest police station that no one had shown up to catch him; there mustn't have been any patrol cars nearby either. Not that Thewlis imagined that wide patch of road paid much in taxes, casinos or no; it wasn't exactly shocking that government services were iffy.
What was shocking was that his luck had held. Assuming it had.
He'd driven west on fifteen, expecting flashing lights behind him every mile of the way, and finally made Barstow, to a neighborhood where he'd heard one could contact a discreet doctor. The man wouldn't do anything illegal, but he'd respect a patient's need to be careful and to stay off the books.
Which was, of course, illegal in and of itself, but the good doctor wouldn't do anything else illegal.
Thewlis had parked in a dingy lot, then walked up the street and into a bar. Ordering a certain special got him escorted upstairs, then across a series of rooftops between flapping laundry and climbing vines and ramshackle shelters, then down another set of stairs to a windowless room where he was told to wait. He'd fallen asleep on the bare floor, propped in a corner.
Some time later, a reasonably gentle hand had shaken him awake, led him to a garage and helped him into a car. "We're going to a poker party," the driver had said in a low voice. "Try to look like you're heading for a good time when we get there."
He'd nodded and fallen asleep again.
When they got to the house with the poker party, which was also where the doctor lived, he'd gone in, managing a grimace and a wave. Another car that arrived at about the same time had four men in it, one of whom was leaning on another. "Drunk already!" one of the men called, and they'd all laughed. In the light of the entry way, though, once the front door was closed, the "drunk" man looked to be suffering from overindulgence in gunfire rather than alcohol.
Three other men were already there, and five of them sat down to play a noisy game of poker in the living room while Thewlis and the man who'd been shot were led down to the basement. The doctor, a thin, balding man with permanent stress lines in his face, had checked them both, then helped Thewlis into the work room first.
That'd been... Thewlis actually didn't know how many nights ago. He'd been drugged and sleeping ever since, with brief waking periods to eat, drink, and stagger to the toilet. The doctor, whose name Thewlis had never actually learned and probably never would, had told him he'd live. The man who'd been shot hadn't.
As near as he could figure, all those empty cardboard boxes had saved his life. Light and incredibly crushable, they'd absorbed enough of the blast that he hadn't ended up splattered across the lawn. Then the stark, panic terror he'd felt at the thought of being caught at the blast site or found on the road by the authorities had jolted him with enough adrenaline to keep moving; looked like the government was good for something after all.
Once he was more awake, he shifted slowly, tensing only the muscles absolutely required to roll over onto his side. Regular nursing care wasn't an option at that particular clinic, and he felt bed sores forming on his ass. They weren't quite as bad on his hips, so he propped himself up facing the room and tried to relax again.
Focusing his thoughts through the scattered, swooping fuzziness, to say nothing of the headache which still hung on despite whatever drugs he was on, took considerable concentration. He pushed the pain aside and ignored it in favor of sorting out his memories and trying to come up with some sort of useful analysis.
Depending on how thoroughly the house had burned, there might be more or less evidence of his presence. The police would know that someone had been there; he'd left the safe open and empty. They might change their mind about that interpretation once they found out that Marty'd skipped the country, but for a while, at least, it'd point to a burglary.
The scattered papers and things outside the bathroom window might be another clue to an intrusion. Again, it depended on how throughly the place had burned, along with how much of a mess the firefighters made when they stomped around. Fire hoses could blow small objects quite a distance.
Thewlis thought about that. The house was small enough that a hose aimed in from one side could probably blast something out the other side, if the walls collapsed, but it'd depend which angle or angles the firefighters approached from. He had no way of knowing that, so the things in the yard outside the bathroom might be considered another piece of evidence of his presence.
His footprints in the dust would be gone, and likewise any fibers which might've fallen off his clothes despite his precautions. Unless he'd tracked dirt from a California beach or forest, any evidence of that sort could also be attributed to the firefighters' boots. He'd been lurking around Marty's place long enough that anything on his shoes was probably local anyway.
Everything he'd done to avoid leaving evidence at the house would be pointless, though, along with the fire itself -- a stroke of fortune from that point of view, despite his slightly mangled body -- if the police were smart enough to look around and discover that he'd been watching Marty's house on and off for weeks now. He hadn't used his real name, of course, but there were locals who could describe him -- starting with that clerk he'd spun the photographer story to -- and his face probably showed up on hours of surveillance film, in stores and parking lots and traffic cameras.
He wondered whether they'd accuse him of setting the bomb.
Speaking of which, it was clear Marty'd set it himself. Thewlis wondered whether that meant he actually knew he was being watched, or whether he was just being thorough.
If he'd known he was being watched then the bomb had likely been set in hopes of catching the watcher. If he'd just meant to be thorough then the bomb had been meant to destroy evidence. It'd been on a timer, and there'd been a wire on the only box which hadn't been empty, so it'd been set to go off either way -- slow if left alone, or quick to catch a searcher.
Thewlis scowled and wondered what'd been there that he'd missed. He hadn't even gotten away with the contents of the banker's box -- even the contents of the safe, likely trash, was beyond his reach.
All he could hope was that some evidence of Marty's business had survived, and that the authorities found it. There was a slim hope that if they set off down that trail, they'd leave focus on Marty and leave anyone else -- like Thewlis himself -- alone. A completely unrealistic hope, mind, but it was all he had to hang on to at that point.
Within a week of beginning body-slave training, Orlando was wishing he had the drugged fuzziness back again.
He'd always known he was lucky in his owner. Master Liam was affectionate and protective, and Orlando'd been willing to take Johnny's word, on an intellectual level, that most slaves -- even body-slaves -- weren't as indulged as he was. As he'd been. Real body-slave training was rubbing his nose in just how spoiled he'd been, though. He wasn't ready for any of it.
Within that first week, he'd been fucked by more people than he'd known by name in all his life before being stolen. Now that it was part of their training, anyone who worked for Commerce was allowed to indulge whenever a slave wasn't actively in lessons, and most of their lessons were about being fucked too, with additional instruction in pleasing both genders by hand and orally. The only restriction to the guards and lower-level staff was a line drawn at injuries. Serious injuries, that was; bruises, scrapes and minor cuts didn't count.
The only people not allowed to use him however they liked were the other slaves. They were still off limits to one another, because, as a trainer had emphasized, their bodies didn't belong to them and weren't for their own use, whether alone or with another slave. Their duty was to keep ready at all times to serve their owner or anyone their owner bid them to serve.
The restriction against masturbating didn't make any sense for the female slaves, who could perform just as well right after an orgasm as before, but then making sense wasn't terribly high in Commerce's priorities.
But when they weren't in class, they were being used casually, and if that kept them up all night they were still expected to perform to the trainers' exacting standards. After all, their owner or his guests might need them all night some time, and that would be no excuse to laze around in bed all the next day.
By the end of the first week, Orlando was numb to mere fucking, and his mouth would automatically start sucking on anything pushed into it.
When they'd started on some of the more unusual kinks, one of the trainers had said nothing would ever be as bad as training, that they'd be able to properly appreciate their new owner, and do whatever was bid of them with a cheerful attitude because compared with their training, anything an owner was likely to want would seem tame. Orlando wasn't convinced that was true, either that the comparison would turn him into a cheerful little fuck-toy or that there weren't owners out there who could make life just as bad as a trainer. He didn't give it more than a passing moment's thought, though; most of the time his attention was focused on the now, on whatever stimulus he was aware of at that particular moment and whatever the proper response was that had been or was being conditioned into him.
Four more weeks. Orlando couldn't imagine getting through it, but he had to. Hell, they'd make him; he doubted very much that suicide was a viable option in this place, no matter how much he wished for it in the near future.
Next Chapter: Chapter Thirty-Five