Aida could never be this tough. Yet this girl could have been an Aida who Uri didn't rescue. Anna wondered if this is what Aida might have become if she would have had to live on the street alone.
“Who are you?” Anna asked.
Erich von Gotha (1924, English)
“No one you’d consort with, m’ lady,” the girl said with bravado. But Anna knew, behind her words, she was scared.
“What did she do?” Anna asked her guide, who was now stepping out of the way.
“Petty thief,” was the man’s answer. “But not to worry on her behalf; after her punishment she will be set free.” Then he whispered, “She’s popular, if you understand my meaning.”
“So, you’re popular,” Anna said to the girl. “Then it shouldn’t be a problem for you to lean on me.” The girl’s breathing was deep and long; Anna could tell she was preparing herself for the worst. “That’s right, put your head on my shoulders. Yes, rest your body against mine. I will hold your hands.” The girl complied as she let her body fall against hers. “I’ll be with you the whole time,” Anna added.
The girl did as she was told and put her head on Anna’s shoulder. Anna did the same for her. From where she stood, Anna would get a privileged view of the flogging. The flogging master wasn’t what she expected when he emerged from the parting crowd. She thought she’d see a hooded figure, executioner style, dour, and somber march up slowly. Instead, a colorful figure of a man with a harlequin-crossed shirt pranced into view.
The crowd, of course, cheered. He threw kisses in all directions and winked at the pretty girls. In each hand he had two bright floggers with red, orange, yellow, and blue tails. He twirled them around in the air over his head, tossing them high and catching them behind his back. Wild applause from the crowd.
The watching mob shouted in unison, “Flog her, flog her.”
The girl pulled herself closer to Anna.
“You’ll be okay,” Anna told her. “Just try to shut them out.”
“Shut up,” the girl whispered into Anna’s ear. That’s when Anna noticed the heat in the girl’s loins as their bodies pressed against each other.
As the harlequin man took his position behind the girl’s back, Anna wondered: how much is going to be for show and how much will be real punishment. Her question was answered a moment later, when he let the first stroke fly and splayed the girl’s back with the flogger’s tails. Each thong, there must have been thirty, found a mark on her tender skin. Anna felt the lash reverberate through the girl’s body. Anna also felt, rather than heard, the girl gasp. And she sensed the almost undetectable motion of the girl pressing her loins against Anna’s legs.
“Oh, yes,” Anna thought to herself, “I understand.”
The punisher made an impressive performance for the crowd. He used both floggers simultaneously on the girl's back and rump, throwing his blows in figure eights, one flogger crossing over and under the other, striking the girl from both sides in continuous and rapid succession. With his skill at the flogger, Anna couldn’t follow his hand motions, and wondered how the tails didn’t get hopelessly tangled. Every few minutes, he’d stop and toss his floggers into the air, twirl around, and catch them as they came down. He’d then continue his flogging without missing his tempo. The crowd cheered to his theatrics.
The entire scene didn’t last long. Fifteen to twenty minutes, from Anna’s estimate. But that could have been a lifetime for the flogged girl. When it was over, the jovial man with a balding head released the girl from her manacles. She collapsed into Anna’s arms. Anna could feel the heat in her body, but with a thousand people watching, there was nothing she could do to help her outl. The assistants gently pulled the girl’s dress up over her very red and welted back. Then they lead her away.
Erich von Gotha (1924, English)
Sweet Tears And Reflections
“Hey!” she shouted in the girl’s general direction, but by then she had hopelessly melded away into the mix.
“Did you enjoy yourself?” Anna heard Odin say from beside her.
“Did you see that? She took that —”
“Never mind that trinket,” he said. “At least she’ll be able to feed herself for a while.”
Before Anna could utter her protest she was transported yet again to a very foreign environment.
... to be continued ...
- even more stories,
- links to my published works,
- newbie help with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.