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stargate, DanielJackson

LCI: Week 2: Title: Contractual Fallacy

Posted on 2014.10.06 at 22:16
Tags: ,

They should all be sleeping. Slaves only get four hours off a night. But they’re all too nervous. The slave contract laws were apparently supposed to make things better for slaves. Instead they just allow the masters to pat themselves on the back about how good and just they are and make themselves feel better while slaves spend this one weekend every six months scared out of their minds for what could come next. Gel has placed herself in a particularly precarious position, by asking for her contract to be given to a different master. It’s likely the request will be granted, but that doesn’t mean the next master won’t be even worse. She understood the risks, made her decision and wouldn’t change it now. But she can’t stop her mind spinning circles, thinking.

She tries to focus on the others to distract herself. Durrin is writing out lists of names, his expression pinched into one of perpetual concern, he takes the fledgling slaves under his wing and worries for them when they leave the nest. He doesn’t need to worry about his contract changing hands; he’s highly skilled and a good leader of the slaves under his command, but that doesn’t stop him worrying over everyone else, it’s almost painful to watch.

Lint is curled up biting his nails, Ceris is doodling her pencil right through the paper. Lodog stares impassively, feigning indifference, but he’s as scared as the others. None of them trust their respective masters.

Ero unlike the rest of them is entirely care-free, sitting on the counter with one leg curled under himself and the other dangling over the edge. He bites into a strawberry and offers the punnet to the others.

“Who the fuck gives a slave strawberries? Fresh strawberries,” Lodog spits.  

Durrin glares at Lodog and then sends a sympathetic expression Ero’s way, Derrin’s being his typical self- wanting to fix everything, talk to Ero about the troubles he doesn’t realise he has. Help him ‘heal’. Ero, noticing Durrin’s expression, rolls his eyes and sends a grin in Lodog’s direction.

“Oh, don’t. I can stop fucking Ulbo any time I want, but then I wouldn’t have these lovely strawberries!” There’s no bitterness in his tone and no darkness in his eyes. There should be. There really, really should be.

A master fucking a slave never ends well for them, there’s always a time when the slave says no and the master will either ignore it, or listen and take it out on the slave for the rest of their contract. Of course if a master initiates it there’s nothing any slave can do. But everyone knows it was the other way around with Ero. And thus everyone thinks Ero is an idiot. Mindlessly landing himself deeper and deeper into trouble. His teeth are gleaming in an idle happy smile on the surface; Gel sees the razor edges underneath. Where others see a silly boy seducing his master out of foolish arrogance and lust, she sees the cunning and intention, the planning, forethought, manipulation.

She thinks; he’s dangerous.

Ero levels a piercing look at her and it feels as though he knows her exact thoughts, she remembers that one of his powers were telepathy and idly wonders how good a lay a slave would have to be for a master to allow them access to their powers, even a passive one. She almost snorts at the notion of passivity of telepathy, as though knowing what’s coming next wouldn’t be one hell of an advantage in a fight, but well that’s its classification.



*



Gel’s informed that her request has been accepted and that they’ve already found a new master who wishes to take over her contract. It’s startling, happening much faster than usual. And then to only add to the oddity, a mere two hours later she’s standing before said new master. But it’s who he is which is the real surprise. It’s none other than Ulbo, Ero’s master.

She can’t believe she’s here, in front of him, she’s certain Ero had something to do with this, the only question is why. Her master is speaking of the rules of her new contract though and she knows it’s imperative that she listens carefully.

“You may use your powers to protect yourself if you find yourself in physical danger,” Ulbo declares.

Gel almost stops breathing at the words. Suspicion wars with delight. Ero definitely has something to do with this. But her mind can’t help but stray to the notion of being able to protect herself. Such a precious idea; she could be safe. There’s also a loophole she almost doesn’t dare think about, he hasn’t specified that she couldn’t protect herself against her master. And sure, she would only have one shot before he realises and changes it, but for this little while she’ll have a safety net, the knowledge that if a punishment gets too unbearable she has a way to stop it. It fills her with warmth she chastises herself for. It could always get worse.

She remembers falling, knees crashing hard onto cement. Arms yanked back, muscle strained, sinew tearing, hanging.

“Thinking about ways around the rules already, Ero was right, you are a smart one. Well do tell,” Ulbo asks.

Well that confirms one thing. She tries not to let her face fall as she answers, “You didn’t say I couldn’t protect myself from you.”

“You’re right, I didn’t,” Ulbo states, smirking, rescinding nothing.

She’s in trouble. A beautiful, disastrously hope-giving, relief-inducing trouble.



*



She says nothing to Ero for three weeks, just watches him, watches as the world melts around him. His fellow slaves fear him and hold disdain for him in equal measure. He ignores them while lounging with long slender legs, head tilted back, hair glistening. He seems innocent, innocuous, delectable.

She thinks, dangerous.

She goes to him one night, when he’s alone, and finally asks,
“Why me?”

Ero gives her that ever-penetrating gaze, mouth pursed serious for once, with words weighted down, he speaks,

“You see me. I would prefer to work with someone who sees me than someone who doesn’t.”

She sighs, wonders whether he’s lonely and wonders if it even matters to him, there’s an inevitability to all this, “So what’s the agenda?”

Ero smiles.
“Escape.”



*



It’s ridiculous. She’s the safest she’s ever been. He’s the safest he’s ever been. That’s why it works; no one would ever expect it. It’s beautiful in its simple audacity. It will be so much worse if they get caught; she’s running away with a ruthless man she barely knows. Then again, she’s always been a gambler. And laying bets on freedom seems as good a reason as any.

The first day they walk out in the open, on an errand, no one thinks otherwise, no slave would run from such a good household. They aren’t watched too closely and it won’t be until nightfall that they are found to be missing.

They traverse the streets easily, hiding in shadows, abandoned buildings, unused basements. Each day they are further from the city. Each day they are less likely to get caught. Anyone else would’ve been captured by now. There are reasons people don’t allow slaves access to their powers.

Their odds are improving, she still rolls the dice; leans into him, kisses those too-innocent lips, sweet lies spun into their curves and crevasses. He responds in kind, mouth opening, delving deep, passionate, all smooth lines and elegance.

She thinks, dangerous.



*



She trips. It’s bad timing, bad turning, ankle twisting, mis-angling, spraining. She collapses onto hard cement. And tries to not remember.

“They’re coming, closing in,” Ero says.

She knows he can hear their thoughts. She doesn’t loop an arm around his neck, knows better.

“I’m sorry,” he says, pressing a kiss to her lips and turning on his heal, as lithe as ever, and gliding away.

She thinks she would’ve told him to run, to leave her, if he’d given her the chance. But of course he didn’t.

As a baton strikes her head and all around fades to black one thought swims in the inky abyss, dangerous.


Comments:


Jemima Pauler
jem0000000 at 2014-10-08 23:31 (UTC) (Link)
Definitely dangerous. Poor woman.
swirlsofblue
swirlsofblue at 2014-10-09 15:01 (UTC) (Link)
Yep. Thank you :)
Jemima Pauler
jem0000000 at 2014-10-12 00:02 (UTC) (Link)
You're welcome.
n3m3sis43
n3m3sis43 at 2014-10-09 00:14 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, man. I knew this wasn't going to end well, even though I wanted to be wrong about Ero and what would happen to Gel. I really enjoyed the journey, regardless.

Edited at 2014-10-09 12:14 am (UTC)
swirlsofblue
swirlsofblue at 2014-10-09 15:00 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you enjoyed the journey :)
Kelly
kajel at 2014-10-09 01:37 (UTC) (Link)
And she was right. Great job.
swirlsofblue
swirlsofblue at 2014-10-09 15:01 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
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