Zugzwang

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Chapter 3

Lexie leaned against the doorframe as she waited for the rest of the groups to finish. She rubbed her shoulder but she had forced the pain to the back of her mind many minutes ago. She had watched while the humanoid drones rushed into the basement gym and take Eli’s vitals, she had left him barely breathing, she couldn’t say she was sorry. She watched as they rushed him out of the room, no one else noticed. She turned her attention back to the other fights. Don’t think about Eli now there would be plenty of time for that later.

Lexie watched Ari instead. Ari shifted from foot to foot as she openly studied her opponent, Lexie smirked. Ari always surveyed her opponents within the first few seconds; anything else was usually used to play on the opponents nerves. It was working. Ari’s opponent, Nat, had sweat beading on her forehead but she didn’t dare look away because Ari had a reputation for being shockingly fast. Lexie had found that out the hard way her first day in the school.

Lexie still remembered cowering in a dark corner hoping to wait out the killing ritual. Still remembered sweating with fright until Ari snuck up behind her, in a matter of seconds the two of them were tumbling about the room. Both trying to get the upper hand and neither succeeding. Finally Lexie was somehow able to pin Ari’s arms down then a shot rang out through the halls. Someone else had died so they wouldn’t have to. Ari had been fast and lethal, Lexie smirked.

Ari ran towards Nat in breathtaking speed, and sent a kick behind Nat’s neck. Nat sprawled on the floor, Ari would have finished her off but the bell rang. Ari smiled sweetly and helped Nat to her feet. “Nice job,” Lexie said when Ari bounced up to her a few moments later.

Ari shrugged, “I couldn’t get my hands on her. Would’ve been over quicker if that happened. How did yours go?”

“Eh,” Lexie motioned out the door, “He was rushed to the emergency wing.”

“Will he live?”

Lexie shrugged again, “Possibly. I thought I had smashed his windpipe, miscalculated.”

Ari laughed, “You don’t miscalculate, you wanted him to live didn’t you?”

“Fucker dislocated my shoulder.”

“Yeah, okay,” Ari laughed as she slipped behind her in line.

Lexie rolled her eyes. This was going to be a long day; she sighed and followed the students down the halls. “Just look on the bright side,” Ari whispered from behind her, “At least we have our free day tomorrow.”

Lexie stifled a groan, free days were supposed to be a reward. At the beginning Lexie used to look forward to them, it was an escape from the ‘horrors’ that happened in the halls of the school. Now she only saw them as a distraction, and not a welcome one at that. chuckled softly, “Don’t worry, Lex,” she murmured, “I’ll think of something to change your mind about tomorrow.”

Lexie didn’t even try to stop the sigh that sprang to her lips. “Fine,” Lexie breathed, “Just make sure to make it through the day to make fruition on that promise.”

Ari’s quite laughter reached only her ears as they continued down the hall.

Victor stared at the gaming board with narrow eyes, Alexander bit back his bubbling questions. He wasn’t sure he understood what all of the symbols on the board stood for but none of it could be anything pleasant. Of the dozen players that stood on the board, none of them had hardly moved in any significant direction except for the one player who had faded out and disappeared only moments before.

Anya motioned to one of the cushioned chairs, “Please, lad,” she smiled, “Make yourself comfortable. I’m afraid this game can take a while.”

Victor chuckled not looking up from the board, “It always does.”

Anya inclined her head, “the first game we ever played only took two days.”

“That would be because you sent the fear of God into your players and convinced them all my players were witches.”

Anya hid a smile behind her hand as she pretended to examine the board once again, “And the longest lasted almost a quarter of a century.”

Victor almost glared at her from over his players, “That’s because you convinced all the players that each one held deadly weapons that could destroy the population of the world if gone unchecked.”

Anya didn’t hide her amusement this time, “It was a beautiful game,” she mused.

Looking from one to the other Alexander couldn’t tell which one was worse, the Lord who held his goblet of blood tightly in his fist and didn’t hold back any of his attacks to try and win his battle. Or the Lady, who stared seductively over at her husband and seemed to know every move before it was even played. The one who apparently had won many of these games before. Alexander forced himself not to tremble and dropped into a chair. Don’t let them fratch you, Alexander thought to himself, Whatever happens don’t let them fratch you.

“The first day comes to a close,” Victor smiled over the table, “let the fun begin.”

Anya laughed heartily, “I thought it already had!”

They shuffled from class to class. After the basement gym came the weapon masters class, who barked orders and fired demonstrations at the brick wall to his right. Lexie always wondered when the wall would come tumbling down, but it hadn’t yet and she counted that as a wonder in itself. Then came the master of strategies. Maps lined the walls covered with pins and red thread; some of these maps were fairly self explanatory while others looked like a web of interweaving thread with no obvious connection. Lexie’s brain hurt by the end but at least it was an interesting topic.

The last few classes of the day ranged from survival skills to lethal chemical compounds to how to build a bomb. Moving from room to room had become a simple routine. Every master had different thoughts on different matters, somewhere quite masters that were there more for supervision, like the floor master, while others seemed to thrive on barking orders, like the weapons master. Those that refused to learn to learn were often the first to die. And Lexie was determined to stay alive as long as possible.

By four in the afternoon classes were over but then the real training began until the lights off bell rang again at nine in the evening. Students were assigned to different areas; some were moved around daily to different classrooms to focus in on certain areas. Students would crowd around the digital board by the entrance to the mess hall. They would wait for it to flicker on and show the glowing names. Lexie always was placed in the floor masters evening class. She loved stepping out of the basement everyday sore but knowing that she had made the master proud. She loved the nod that he always gave her when she sent yet another student flying towards the wall. But today was different, today her name wasn’t next to the floor masters class, today she was to go to the master of history’s class. Lexie felt her heart sink as she realized that she was the only person sent to that classroom.

She felt Ari’s hand on her shoulder as she gave her a reassuring squeeze before bouncing off toward the master of strategies. Lexie sighed as turned her heel in the other direction.

Alexander stared at the board in wonder, he wasn’t aware of having made a sound but he jumped when Anya smiled up at him. “Problem, lad?”

Alexander shook his head wildly, “No, my lady, I’m sorry. I was out of line.”

Victor chuckled to himself, “I think you are starting to loose your touch, my dear. That was a curious move indeed.”

Anya just smiled her secretive smile as she watched her piece on the gaming board move down the halls of her school. Alexander stared at her in wonder.

Lexie reached the classroom, the master of the class sat at her desk reading over a stack of papers. When Lexie entered the room the master looked up with the ever pleasant smile still plastered on her face. Lexie nodded respectfully, “Master,” she muttered standing with her hands clasped behind her back.

The master motioned towards one of the desks, “please.”

Lexie hurriedly took the seat and sat at attention, waiting for instructions. The master didn’t speak for a few moments while she finished reading. When she got up and made her way around her desk, Lexie tensed. What was the master doing? Was she going to strike her for speaking out of turn in class? But she hadn’t really spoken out of turn in the class, had she? The master had just asked her a question. The master leaned against her desk and looked down at Lexie. Lexie took a deep breath and waited.

The silence stretched on; Lexie waiting for the master and the master just looking down at her. Lexie’s reserve was slowly wearing down, she wasn’t sure how long she sat there but she knew it was a long time. She didn’t dare look at the clock, that was bolted to the wall just out of the reach of her peripheral vision. She didn’t dare look away from the master’s eyes. That was a sign of weakness.

Lexie wasn’t happy, but she broke, “Why am I here master?”

The master of classes cocked an eyebrow, “You were assigned to come to my class, and I’m here to answer questions.”

“The only time I haven’t been assigned to the floor masters class was the first few days of school.”

“Touché,” the master of class chuckled, “Alright, I requested you be assigned to my class today.”

“Why?”

“Because of your performance in class today,” the master mused as she shifted on her desk to get comfortable, “you know half the time I don’t really know if you’re paying attention. Then you open your mouth today and I don’t know what to think.”

“That doesn’t answer the question.”

The master shrugged, “I didn’t say I was going to answer the question. But I’m going to ask some of my own. How did you find out so much about the War and the deal?”

“I read.”

“Apparently. But what do you know about the Vampires?”

Lexie cocked an eyebrow, “Besides the fact that they are Vampires? Not much.”

“I didn’t think so. What is the difference between the first generation Vampires or young Vampires?”

“There’s a difference?”

“Yes.”

“Vampires are Vampires,” she said less uncertain then before.

The master shook her head; “No…they’re not,” the master’s smile slowly disappeared as she walked back behind her desk, “When do you think the first Vampire’s came into being?”

“I assume they evolved through a gene abnormality?”

“Wrong, they came into being around the thirteenth century, about the time around the War of Roses. They are reported to have changed over time due to some gene abnormalities but they were not created because of these abnormalities,” the master sat down and started to shift through some of the papers that littered her desk, “However, their creation was said to have been caused because of a mysterious series of events that the Vampires have been very vague in clearing up. It could be that some of the Vampires simply don’t know how they came to be. But, we can assume, the first generation Vampires would know what happened.”

“Why are you telling this to me?”

The master’s smile returned, “I had thought that you might be interested to know the difference between the generations of Vampires.”

Something in the master’s tone gave her pause. Lexie slowly nodded, “I guess that would be a good thing to know.”

“The first generation of Vampires are supposed to be inhumanly fast, emotionless, and cold which is strange because our understanding of Vampires is that they are all this way. Yet the records specifically state that the later generations are only interested in fulfilling their desires, such as the pleasure of blood or the pleasures of the flesh.”

“You’re loosing me, master.”

The master smiled wider, seeming to find what she was looking for, “well let’s see if I can explain it in more mundane terms,” slipping a large piece of parchment out of her stack of papers and holding it up for Lexie to see the master asked, “What do you see?”

Lexie stared at the parchment, on it was a group of five people sitting or standing in flowing robes of brilliant colors. None of them smiled but all of them had one thing in common. “Their eyes,” Lexie said still studying the parchment, “they’re all blue.”

The master nodded, “That is the one thing that can distinguish one generation from the next. The color of the eyes varies from generation to generation and blue is the first generation of Vampires as far as we can calculate.”

“Seriously? Something that simple can tell you want manner of skill you’re facing in a fight?”

The master shrugged, “I wouldn’t have stated it in so many words but yes, that’s exactly what they can tell you.”

“That’s what we’re training to think.”

The master’s smile slowly disappeared again, “Right,” she all but whispered, she looked down at her hands contemplating something that Lexie could only guess. Then the master snapped her head up again, “Have you ever thought about the past?”

Lexie couldn’t find a connection between the two, but she decided to answer anyway, “Not really…I mean besides what you talk about in class, that is.”

The master nodded, not seeming to really hear her answer, she sounded distant, as if she was talking to someone Lexie couldn’t see. “Have you ever thought about weapons?”

“Master,” where was this going? The master was talking in circles. Lexie tensed her muscles, ready to spring up no matter where the conversation turned.

The master sighed, coming back to herself, “Well, anything can be a weapon, right?”

Lexie shrugged, uneasily, “I guess, the weapons master-“

The master of the class shook her head, “No, I mean a simple spoon could be used as a weapon if given the right circumstances. In the past, a section of civilization, what was once called a country and this one called India, once used heated spoons to blind torture victims.”

Lexie’s mind started to breeze through the possibilities of such a piece of information, her eyes started to widen but she still didn’t understand how it related to the Vampires. “Even a wooden pencil,” the master continued as she picked up the object in question from her desk, “Could be used to make a victim scream if given the right…pressure.”

Lexie’s muscles tensed further, she didn’t take her eyes of the pencil. She simply waited. “I won’t do anything to you,” the master said in all seriousness, but Lexie found it hard to believe while she still clutched that pencil, “But I need you to understand…”

“Understand what exactly?” Lexie forced through stiff lips.

The master set the pencil down, Lexie allowed herself to relax a little, “Imagine this,” the master started again, “Imagine a time when people weren’t assigned people to marry. Imagine a time when you didn’t go to the sterilization building to further the population and the children you were given were actually yours made from love and desire.”

Lexie made a face, “I think you’ve been reading too many books, master,” Lexie laughed, but one look at the masters face told her she wasn’t kidding, “Seriously?”

The master laughed, “Most people didn’t mate with just anyone it was usually someone of great respect for either party involved.”

Lexie cocked an eyebrow, “you’re loosing me again, master,” she muttered, “What does this has to do with Vampires?”

“Well, picture this; if the human race lived in a world with such desire running the world then what do the Vampires gain from taking away said pleasure?”

Lexie shrugged, “a few horny people they can snap like twigs?”

“Sarcasm, but underlined with truth. By withholding pleasure they then can reward certain individuals with this foreign idea. For example, the Vampires tell an individual to do something, that individual does it and surpassed expectations, that same individual would then experience a certain…pleasure of the flesh under the good will of the Vampires.”

Lexie thought she was going to throw up, “And what exactly would this…pleasure be?”

“You’ve never been to the sterilization building?”

“I’m sixteen,” Lexie snapped, “Believe it or not they only let people in that are seventeen at the least…and that’s only in special cases.”

The master smiled, “Special cases, huh?”

Lexie felt her cheeks heat, “Oh…okay then why bring up the weapons?”

The master shrugged, “why give us weapons?”

“To protect ourselves.”

“From what?”

“From,” Lexie paused. She didn’t have an answer. She had never heard of humans going into full out war since the Vampire’s took over, so it wouldn’t be protection of each other. It couldn’t be for the Vampires, after all the Vampires are the ones that were supposed to be protecting them.

“Exactly,” the master said, normal smile returned to her face, “why give weapons to a possible threat?”

“You wouldn’t,” Lexie said without hesitation, not liking where this was headed, “you would only give weapons to someone… that you know would not turn against you.”

“Correct again. So since they gave the humans weapons…”

“That means we are so far under their thumbs we can no longer go against them,” Lexie finished for the master.

“Again, not the wording I would have used…but that works as well as any.”

“Why are you telling me this?”

The master shrugged, “Why indeed,” the bell rang.

She whipped her head around and stared at the clock on the wall. “I’ll see you in two days,” the master of classes smiled.

Lexie nodded and numbly got to her feet, shuffling to the door. Lexie walked to the girl’s beds as fast as her legs would take her. She stared off into the distance as what the master had said circulated around in her mind. Could the Vampires really have done all that? Did the human race really have a chance? Did anyone really have a chance?

Lexie sat down hard on her bed and numbly stared to slip into her bed clothes, discarding her jumpsuit on the floor. By the time the other girls had entered the room; Lexie had already changed and sat staring at the wall. “Holy hell,” Ari exclaimed as she bounced into the room and spotted Lexie, “The master of the class really gave you a good one!”

Lexie didn’t respond, she didn’t really hear her. Her mind was still buzzing with the new information she had been given. “Lexington!”

Lexie jumped, really hearing Ari for the first time, “What!”

Ari stood before her with her hands on her hips and completely changed from her jumpsuit to her bed clothes, “I’ve been yelling at you for the last ten minutes and you haven’t said a word! It’s no fun making fun of you if you don’t even scold me ya big fucker!”

Lexie gave Ari a weak smile, “Sorry.”

Ari shot Lexie a pouting look, “I told you I would make you forget about tomorrow,” she walked closer and straddled Lexie legs, “and I don’t like to break promises I make to my friends.”

The lights clicked off suddenly. Lexie smiled as she heard other girls scramble towards their beds, “Give it a moment,” Lexie murmured.

Ari nibbled on her ear, “I don’t know if I can wait.”

Lexie shivered but she held firm, “wait.”

They did. There was shuffling in the darkness, it could be one of two things in Lexie’s experiences. Either the girls were trying to get comfortable in their beds or…they were going to do other nocturnal activities. Then someone gave a moan in the darkness, it wasn’t loud but in the dark room it was as if that moan was a shot to start the race. The shuffling increased in variation and speed, “Now,” Lexie whispered into Ari’s ear as she stared to kiss her neck.

Ari giggled. Ari felt for her hands and slipped it under her bed pants, Lexie felt her become wet at her touch and Ari gasped in pleasure. Lexie smiled and grabbed Ari’s head with her other hand, meeting her mouth with her own. Ari’s own hands were fumbling with Lexie’s bed shirt, once it was off her hands pinched her nipples.

Lexie gasped, refusing to pull out of her kiss with Ari, who had suddenly begun rocking back and forth on her hand. The moans in the room had increased in volume. Ari pushed Lexie back onto her bed, Lexie giggled as her head hit her pillow. She thought she saw Ari smiling as she climbed on top of her in the dim light of the room. Lexie started to work on Ari’s pants as Ari straddled her again and began licking. Lexie got Ari’s pants down to her knees, but this time Lexie slowly slipped her hand into her undergarments Ari gasped as Lexie worked her hand back and forth gently.

Ari moved back to Lexie’s mouth, her tongue playing as her hands worked on Lexie’s bed pants slipping her hands under Lexie’s undergarments. Lexie moaned as Ari wrapped her legs around her hips. She started moving with Lexie’s hand, grunting as her pleasure increased. They no longer paid attention to the others in the room. Ari pulled back and started nibbling on Lexie’s hard nipples, she moaned, thrusting into Ari’s hand. Lexie’s other hand slipped under Ari’s shirt and worked her breast. Ari moaned and gasped with pleasure.

Everything rushed out of Lexie’s mind, everything the master of the classroom had said about pleasure flew away. All there was was Ari and desire. They both thrust harder, rolling Lexie forced herself on top of Ari. At first Ari gasped but then she giggled as she pulled Lexie’s mouth to hers. Ari’s tongue played with Lexie’s; it escaped her mouth and licked down Lexie’s neck back down to her breasts. Lexie shivered, the sensation rushed down her spine and though her legs. Lexie thrust harder and faster, Ari complied. Lexie could feel Ari start to cum, she teased her and Ari gasped. Ari threw her head back to the pillow, her eyes wide with wonder, as her breath came in pants. The overwhelming pleasure came upon her, her back arched and a single whine escaped her lips. Lexie smiled and stared to lick Ari’s breast, but was startled when Ari thrust her fingers into her hard and worked her fingers fast.

Lexie was flipped over by Ari. A moan of pleasure tried to escape her lips but it was blocked with Ari’s lips. A few moments of Ari working her back and forth Lexie gasped, eyes rolling back into her skull as blinding pleasure over came her. Ari continued to lick, bite, and play with her breast, “they’re just so fun to play with,” Ari murmured as her freehand rubbed one of Lexie’s breast, extending Lexie’s pleasure.

Lexie moaned as Ari worked her faster and faster, Lexie held her head board as she continued to thrust, her legs wrapping around Ari’s waist, “that’s right, babe,” Ari purred into Lexie’s ear as she nibbled, “give it all to me.”

And Lexie did. Lexie let out an overwhelming groan and panted for breath. She had stopped thrusting as an amazing feeling over came her but Ari’s fingers didn’t stop. And they wouldn’t stop.

Ari lay next to Lexie once they were finished; both were panting and shaking with pleasure. “I have to say,” Ari said kissing Lexie’s neck, “you haven’t lost your touch.”

Lexie smiled and caressed Ari’s womanhood gently with her knee and felt her become wet again, “I’ll never lose my touch,” and with that Lexie licked Ari’s hard nipple, she moaned with pleasure.

Alexander didn’t know what do to; he looked from one of the Lords to the other. Neither of them made the slightest move that they had seen anything wrong. He watched as children slipped under their covers and kissed and moaned and desired for most of the night. Alexander couldn’t pull his eyes away. The game proceeded; no one said anything.

Alexander suddenly wished, not for the first time, that he was back in the kitchens with Ole Sally gossiping in his ear.


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