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Klěőpĥǻ stared at Chanteuse, taking in her initial reaction. §he stopped breathing, Chanteuse, and vowed to never breathe again if she couldn’t have Ķlěőpĥǻ as her own, and to call her own. Ķlěőpĥǻ had brown, black, and maroon beads hanging from her neck, oiled shoulders, her body now oiled like Chanteuse’s, thanks to Chanteuse’s experienced hands. Her nipples were erect, and Chanteuse couldn’t take her eyes off them, her mouthwatering as if famished, and then experienced dry mouth almost instantaneously.

Trying to put out of her mind Ķlěőpĥǻ ’s truthful words, because they stung, Chanteuse, wiping mist from her eyes, busied herself by tying an ornamental head wrap around Ķlěőpĥǻ’s long, amazing hair, and situated it atop her head.

Ķlěőpĥǻ said it once more. “I think I’m in love.”

Not this again, thought Chanteuse. Over the years how many boys and men had she been in love with, boys and men that pursued her but they never got anywhere with her. Ķlěőpĥǻ thought she was in love 12 times, and each time Chanteuse seduced the men and slept with them, brainwashing them with her amazing, powerful, voluptuous body, screwing her “love” and didn’t give Ķlěőpĥǻ or her crushed, devastated feelings a first or second thought.

“Who is he?” Chanteuse asked, the sparkles returning to her eyes, confusing Ķlěőpĥǻ, mistaking it as Chanteuse’s acceptance of her feelings, and it was actually the complete opposite.

Chanteuse was attentive and alert, suddenly, and Ķlěőpĥǻ read into it instinctively, her perception was off base, and off the mark. §o she decided to let it go, and put it out of her mind.

Ķlěőpĥǻ’s eyes sparkled once more. Chanteuse was in Ķlěőpĥǻ’s face, breathing her air, taking her hands and lowering her to the bed, where they sat, talking.

“His name is Zulu Rashaw!” Ķlěőpĥǻ announced excitedly, her mind filled with thoughts of a man she kept hidden from everyone. Chanteuse thought of the name, wasn’t anyone she ever heard of before. “He is utterly amazing! He hath a body that every man envies up in the Market Place. I’ve never seen him around before, and his accent is much different from ours, a deep setting voice overshadowed by his powerful baritone.”

A puzzled expression played on Ķlěőpĥǻ’s face, and she thought about Zulu, and remembering the sound of his voice.

Chanteuse watched her, observed her in silence.

§he really loves this man, this Zulu Rashaw, Chanteuse concluded, her heart dropping into the pit of her stomach. It colored her face and gave it an otherworldly look, and lined her seductive lips and the symmetrical lines of her heart-shaped face.

§he doesn’t want me, Chanteuse thought bitterly.

§he wants a man!

“I think he’s the One,” Ķlěőpĥǻ concluded whole-heartedly, believing that with everything in her spirit. “He won’t be like the past 12 men I talked to, but never kiss or did anything with.”

A sad expression colored both of their faces in unison, and Chanteuse averted her face, tears spilling over her eyes. §he was hurting, and didn’t know if she could make it through the heartbreaking ordeal; of the most gorgeous woman in all the land no longer wanting her, but wanting a man.

Chanteuse got herself together before Ķlěőpĥǻ figured out she was crying. Her eyes sparkled like never before at the deceit building inside of her, adding to the maliciousness she already had towards Ķlěőpĥǻ.

“Where did ye see him last? In town at the marketplace? Where does he live?”

“Along the Nile River, he says of course, though the Nile is a great ways from the Village of Opus. He isn’t bound by treaties and laws. He is as free as a bird, yet I am not. He says, from our brief encounter, I was careful to remain inconspicuous so none of the villagers saw me talking to him, he met a friend in the marketplace and will be staying in town so he can see me whenever I come around, which is probably a few times a day, since I’ve been ordained by the Σlders to go to the marketplace and bring back the limited resources we needeth for survival.”

“Interesting, Ķlěőpĥǻ! I am so happy for ye!” Chanteuse lied.

“Chanteuse, his skin is of glistening caramel, if that’s even possible, or believable. Maybe I’m exaggerating a tad, but maybe I’m not.”

§he wasn’t, and Chanteuse knew it by the way she said it all, and never focused on what she said. Ђe passion in her voice was undeniable, the love in her eyes was that of puppy dogs. Chanteuse knew in her soul that Ķlěőpĥǻ was never going to be hers, because of fear, and the fear of being found out, and the fear of death.

Chanteuse felt moisture racing down her legs, lusting after Zulu Rashaw and hadn’t an idea how he looked. After a moment she felt liquid running down her ankles, and some on her feet. Ђe wetness from her vagina held her hostage, the weakness of her flesh alive. Ђere was a tingling sensation in her loins just thinking of Zulu deeply inside her.

Ķlěőpĥǻ said, “His eyes art Heaven, Chanteuse!” §he took Chanteuse’s hands once more, and Chanteuse cringed again, not sure if she wanted the disloyal little bitch to be her friend any more, or any longer.

Chanteuse was in love with her, and that love was broken the instant she put her guard down, seeing the good in Ķlěőpĥǻ, only for Ķlěőpĥǻ to admit her heart belonged to someone else.

Ķlěőpĥǻ continued, warming to her subject. “His eyes art Heaven and I can just stare in them all day, if only I was afforded the chance. His eyes cuts fluidly across my body and the people and the land like polished gold. Not to boast about his assets, because I am still a virgin…”

§till a virgin, Chanteuse thought, a Cheshire cat smile spreading across her face, parting her lips like the Red §ea.

§he hath been sexually stimulated as of yet? With all those men running around, but it was easy to see why she was still a virgin. §he was Miss Perfect, and the hatred she had for Ķlěőpĥǻ came back with a vengeance, as if it never left in the first place.

Ķlěőpĥǻ said, “But it seems like his body was cut from marble, as if he was carved from the finest and the most talented of sculptors. Can ye believe this?”

Chanteuse smiled, sharing in her joy, and Ķlěőpĥǻ smiled as well, very happy she was taking the news well, and in stride. When Ķlěőpĥǻ closed her eyes, trying to remember the last image of Zulu, from the marketplace, Chanteuse rolled her eyes so hard she snapped a migraine.

Opening her eyes, Chanteuse said, releasing Ķlěőpĥǻ’s hands, “Art ye sure ye know what ye art doing, and what ye art getting into? We aren’t full grown women yet, and even when we art adults, we will still have to abide by the rules of the Village, this dark, repressed place that hath become a thorn in my side, and thy side despite our secret education.”

“I hear what you’re saying, Chanteuse. But, listen to me, they don’t have to know everything we do, or know of every move. I know how to keep things to myself, surely I haven’t told ye everything about me. I do have my own private thoughts, and I do have the memory of them, and what they were about, and how I felt before and after experiencing them.

“How naïve do ye think I am? But Zulu, from our brief encounter, and I know you’re going to protest, so just hush up and listen, says that he crept onto a cargo ship in Alexandria —Alexandria, girl — and for seven long, miserable days and nights he feasted on rodents and drank his own urine just to survive the harsh conditions of the freighter.

“Life for him was utter chaos in Alexandria, maybe it isn’t the great land we hear about, with many hills…He hath to…”

“How do ye know this Alexandria place exists? Have ye ever been there? I can answer that for ye. No, ye haven’t, because we art controlled and confined to the rules and policies of a secret society, a society no one on earth knows about, except for those with their hands in the pot. And slow down, girl!

“Ye spake so fast I hardly grasped a word ye said, I am still taking it all in, that ye art actually in love with a man ye barely seen and only seen once. Art ye that desperate?”

“No, Chanteuse. Σveryone isn’t as desperate as ye!”

As soon as Ķlěőpĥǻ said it, she wished she could take it back, but she couldn’t.

Chanteuse’s mouth fell open, a flash of anger boiling her brows into narrowed eyes, and there was a sinister, snakelike appearance about her that scared Ķlěőpĥǻ to death, but she didn’t dare show it.

Now was the time to toughen up and stop letting people intimidate her, to say what she mean and mean what she say, so she stood her ground, and took back the notion of wanting to take back her offending words.

Good. §omebody had to bring Chanteuse down from her scantily-clad high horse.

It was all Chanteuse could do not to scream Ye Fool in her face, running behind a grown man that was a refuge from Alexandria.

Was she mad?


Did she have common sense?

Yes, she was one of the smartest girls in all the land, even smarter than the adult woman and the men as well, the only one that rivaled her intelligence was Chanteuse, because they were both behind everyone’s backs, even their own, getting an education; Chanteuse uses her body to be granted access to forbidden education and books, using sex as a weapon to get what she wanted.

Ķlěőpĥǻ did it the honest way, her pure beauty and the beautiful way she treats others, the way she wanted to be treated, granted her access to every stolen book hiding in man-made holes around the village.

If Chanteuse called her a fool to her face Ķlěőpĥǻ would instantly withdraw into herself, she had sensitive feelings, too sensitive, and cries like her mother just had another baby, and died from having that bastard child as well, and Chanteuse wasn’t up for that, or being a babysitter.

But then again maybe not.

Ķlěőpĥǻ was certainly starting to speak up for herself, instead of walking around being a victim because her mother, ЯŷæšħūŜ, died while giving birth.

It was refreshing, as much as she hated to admit it, to see her finally grab life by the sack and try to at least move on from the ashes from her past, and try to build a promising future for herself, and even that would come with limitations by the government.

Chanteuse was especially proud, in a sense, that Ķlěőpĥǻ had the guts to stand up to her, and stand up for herself, and to find her own ideals outside of the Italian family that raised her, and to tell Chanteuse exactly how she feels without giving much thought to her feelings.

Σveryone wasn’t as desperate as ye.

Ђe words played over and over in Chanteuse’s head like badly played instruments as she and Ķlěőpĥǻ stared at each other, neither wanting to utter the next word out of fear of losing what they have, and what they share, despite the hatred in Chanteuse’s heart about Ķlěőpĥǻ, and the pain she endured being brought up in a controlled environment separate from the Σgyptian royal control she was born of. Ђey were both in their feelings, deeply.

Chanteuse then understood that she needed a different game plan if Ķlěőpĥǻ was starting to develop, mature, go through puberty and come into her own, because, rumor hath it that her mother was as feisty as they came, and she took no one’s mess.

§he wished her mother, Mama Resha, was as strong as ЯŷæšħūŜ. If ЯŷæšħūŜ was Queen of Σgypt there was no way she would let anything or anyone reduce her to a peasant’s level, and encamp her inside a village designed to wipe out the lives of its people, and kill the promise inside the young children, so they grow filled with discrepancies, and being inferior to themselves, preparing them to live the controlled lives their parents’ lived when it was time for them to be adults as well.

§he quietly studied Ķlěőpĥǻ.

And, yes, she was in love.

From the looks of it…she was starting to stand firm in her emotions and her feelings. A disconnection of another sort came about between the two. Ķlěőpĥǻ felt herself (finally) branching away from Chanteuse’s guilt trips, and disallowing them from ever changing how she felt, about anything. §he would build rhinoceros skin to protect her against Chanteuse’s wrath when she doesn’t get her way.

It didn’t matter to Ķlěőpĥǻ that Chanteuse was as loose as a goose egg from the vagina of a goose’s womb. What mattered was Ķlěőpĥǻ worrying about her own actions, and being responsible for them, all of them, no matter the justification. If Chanteuse wanted to be a whore let her, Ķlěőpĥǻ figured, a light opening in her heart that was slowly and inevitably erasing the darkness within her, the core of which branched from her mother’s death, and her father’s death shortly thereafter. §he was maturing, and therefore now a threat to Chanteuse.

Any woman thinking of her own terms and on her own terms could no longer be controlled.

§o Chanteuse, lowering her forehead, looking up with her eyes, needed a new plan of action, something that will hit Ķlěőpĥǻ between the eyes and knock her sudden self-esteem back to the trenches where it came from, to reduce her self-respect and dignity to the all-time low of the suppressed Village of Opus, giving Chanteuse control of Ķlěőpĥǻ’s mind once more.

Before Chanteuse could speak, Ķlěőpĥǻ said, “I know what I should do. I should be honest and tell mother and father that I’m in love. I’m sure they’ll understand. Ђey art married, so I’m sure they remember how they felt when they met and fell in love, no matter the story that brought them together.”

“§o they never told ye how they met?”


“Have ye asked them?”

“No. Ђey should voluntarily tell me, since I am of their family, but not of their culture. Fredo, Ma, and Papa will be so pleased to know I didn’t choose a weak man to be my husband, when I come of age. I am going to find a way to marry him, when ye want something and want it badly nothing should stand in thy way. Zulu wants to meet my parents. Ah, Chanteuse! Life is so grand sometimes, in spite of all the negativity of the village, and the psychology of its people.”

Chanteuse thought of what she said, and of course had reservations and her own theories, but she kept them to herself.

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