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Shop 'til You Drop

I couldn't help but jump as Aric's cold hand landed on my knee.

"Sorry," he said, seeing my reaction, "I didn't mean to startle you. You just looked sad."

"I'm fine," she sighed, wiping the tear off her pale cheek.

"You know,"Aric replied, removing his hand, "you're a terrible liar."

"I'm sorry," Liberty sniffed, looking at him, "I was thinking about my mom. She's spent the last few days worrying about me. I was just wishing there was a way to tell her."

"When we get to town," he said, taking his eyes away from he road quickly to look at her, "I will arrange for you to send her word that you are safe if you like."

"Really?" I asked, knowing my face lit up.

"Yes," he replied with a nod, returning his gaze to the road, "but first, we really need to get you out of that suit."

I laughed, my heart suddenly lighter than it had been in days.

Leaving the forest behind, we drove past the fields of wheat and barley that surrounded the city.

Looking out as the ocean's of silver raced by I couldn't help but think of what I'd tell my mom. Would I tell her that I was the pet of the reigning vampire lord of Spokane? Or would I just tell her that I was safe for now and leave it at that?

Soon the fields gave way to the dim lights shining through curtained windows, behind which I knew human families sat trying to make the best of their lots in life.

Some had it better, some had it worse, but at least they were all free.

Aric pulled his car into the parking lot of a brightly lit store, parking in the first available slot.

"Ready?" he asked taking the keys out of the ignition.

"Ready to get out of this?" I laughed, pulling on the gaudy sweatsuit, "yes please."

Entering the store, I was absolutely overawed at the array of items the store held.

There were human sized cat trees of all shapes and sizes, two-level all the way to five-level.

After this was an aisle of all types of collars, leather, silk, satin, even painful looking hemp. I couldn't help but start trembling when Aric turned down this aisle.

Running his fingers over several different styles, he picked out a soft, padded brown one with a matching leash.

After that, he took me towards the back of the store where there was an array of hideous looking outfits that I prayed he would never make me wear. They were terrible.

Paying for the collar and leash, Aric quickly replaced the leather collar I was wearing that was already rubbing a raw spot onto my neck.

"This should feel better," he said, tossing the leather one to the clerk.

"What about clothes?" I asked, wishing almost immediately I had kept my mouth shut when I saw the look of shock on the clerks face.

Aric turned suddenly, slapping me lightly across the face.

"Do not speak unless I tell you to," he hissed, jerking me to him by my new collar.

"New pet," Aric said, turning to the clerk.

Without another word he pulled me out of the store.

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