The Katzman's Mate
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by Stormy Glenn
Description: Thirty years after his father, the High Ruler of Katzman, was murdered, Commander Chellak Rai has finally returned to reclaim his birthright. What he finds is more than he expected or could ever have hoped for. Demyan is a bruter, one of the rare and exotic people of the planet Elquone. He is also a slave. And according to his contract, if he does not have a master, he must be returned to the cruel hands of Vortigern Vedek, the man that killed Chellak's father and stole his throne. For Chellak, it is a double-edged sword. He knows the moment he meets Demyan that the sexy little man is his destined mate, but the laws of his planet state that he can not own a slave. To keep Demyan, he must defy his own laws and beliefs. But keeping Demyan is not as easy as winning his heart. [Alternative Futuristic Erotic Romance. Warning: contains graphic sexual content and adult language.]
eBook Publisher: Siren-BookStrand, Inc./Siren Classic, 2009 2009
eBookwise Release Date: September 2009
91 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [171 KB]
Reading time: 116-163 min.
5 STARS: "Chellak is your strong virile alpha that has come back to his home planet to revenge his father and overthrow the dictator who invaded thirty years ago. Demyan is the submissive bruter that becomes Chellak's slave with the removal of the old ruler. Unsure of what exactly a bruter is but strongly attracted to the man whom Chellak realizes is his mate causes some difficulty for Chellak. The emotional struggle these two go through because of past abuses, and the inability to understand each other, will pull at your heartstrings. The scene when they finally get together is one of the best while the scene where Chellak finds out what a bruter is will having you chuckling. The Katzman's Mate is another strong story by Stormy Glenn and one I highly recommend."--Lydia, Rainbow Reviews
5 CUPS: "I have two things to suggest about Katzman's Mate. Have a big box of tissues and plenty of time, as you are not going to want to put this book down. It is full to the brim with the amazing lives of these futuristic men in a mysterious foreign world. Ms. Glenn has written a magical tale that will have you smiling through your tears while you want to teach the big macho alpha a lesson in listening."--Hollie, Coffee Time Romance
4.5 BLUE RIBBONS: "Ms. Glenn has brought about something different with The Katzman's Mate. Not only has she given us a book with two worthy protagonists, but a solid plot that lends itself to future book. Ms. Glenn's The Katzman's Mate is a well thought out story, with surprises aplenty, characters that tear at your heart strings, and enough tension filled scenes that will have you thumbing the pages of this book for a long while after you read it. The Katzman's Mate contains all the aspects that I like in a book--and I will be looking forward to the next story that Ms. Glenn pens."--jhayboy, Romance Junkies
5 ANGELS: "Ms. Glenn has created an intricate and fascinating story in a futuristic world with unique and compelling characters. Demyan's story was intriguing to watch as it unfolded. There were many people and situations that lead to his present situation with people like Sorina who risked much to insure his safety. I loved how Chellak wanted nothing but to help Demyan start to trust him and even ask Ciprian's mate to teach him to read and write. Demyan's ability to read and write allowed him to communicate with others. The visual descriptions of each of the characters bring them alive for the reader. Thanks go to Ms. Glenn for another incredible story."--Teresa, Fallen Angel Reviews
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The invasion ended before it barely began. Without enough soldiers to fight off the invading forces of the Federation of Planets, the High Ruler Vortigern Vedek had surrendered. His son and heir, Viorel Vedek, having fled during the chaos, left his father to deal with the conquering warriors.
Commander Chellak Rai walked into the great hall liked he owned it. And, to an extent, he did. His family ruled the planet three decades ago. On the edge of the Federation borders, they were separated from most of the known universe.
When Vortigern Vedek and his associates had landed on the planet as part of a trade venture thirty years ago, they overthrew the peaceful government with their superior technology.
It had taken Chellak Rai and his brother, Ciprian, three decades to train and build their forces to reclaim their home world.
"Ciprian, report," Commander Chellak demanded as he glanced around the opulent room. Vortigern Vedek sure liked to live the high life. The throne room was much changed from the days of his father's rule.
It now boasted an opulent golden throne at the end of the room sitting on a high dais. Chairs lined the high walls from the dais down to the two large doors that went from floor to ceiling. A long red and gold carpet went from the two doors to the bottom of the dais. Many colorful tapestries hung from the high walls giving the room a medieval keep feel to it.
"Two ships got away. One believed to be carrying the Viorel Vedek. His father is still here, though. He's being escorted here as we speak."
"Casualties?" Chellak asked as he glanced around the room. Something in the room ... a scent maybe, made him edgy. He could just barely detect it. So slight, he could not pin point its direction.
"Just a few. The resistance was low once we landed. Most of the royal guards have either flown or given up. Those that are loose are being hunted down as we speak. The wounded are being attended in the temple."
"Good, let me know when Vedek gets here. I want a ship prepared for him. I want him and his associates off this planet as soon as possible. The sooner he is gone, the sooner we can begin to put this place back to the way it should be." Chellak shot Ciprian a worried look. "Has Yerik joined you yet? He is safe?"
"Yes, Yerik is tending the wounded. He will join us soon." Ciprian smiled, warmed by his brother's concern for his mate. "What do you want us to do with them?" He gestured towards the small group of scared and frail looking people off to one side of the large room. Some stood, others knelt. They all looked afraid.
Chellak glanced briefly at the small group, his lips twisting in a grimace at their sad condition. Just another reason to get rid of Vortigern Vedek. He treated his people very badly.
"Who are they?"
"Mostly servants, I think. I haven't really been able to figure it out. We found them huddled together in one of the rooms downstairs." Ciprian glanced sadly at the group. "Chellak, they were locked in, and the door was booby trapped. If a single one of them had attempted to open the door, they'd all be dead."
Chellak could feel the anger building inside of him at the conditions of the people that were his once again. He fisted his hands as he took several steps towards the group, stopping when he saw them start shaking with fear. Not one of them looked up at him. Chellak squatted down near an old woman.
"Tell me your name?" he asked in his softest voice.
"I am called Sorina, master," the old woman replied quietly.
"Who are you, Sorina? Do you work here in the palace?"
"I am Sorina, master. I belong to Master Vedek. We all do."
"You work for him, you mean? Are you servants then?" Chellak asked in confusion.
"No, master, we belong to Vedek. He is our master."
Chellak could see her glance up at him through her lashes before quickly looking back down at the floor.
"Do we belong to you now?" she asked quietly.
Before he could answer, the main doors flew open, banging against the wall, and Vortigern Vedek walked in as if he were still king of the castle. He frowned when he saw Chellak talking to Sorina. He could not hide the look of anger and distaste that crossed his face.
Chellak watched Sorina shrink back when Vedek glared at her. It made him even angrier. He couldn't stomach bullies who preyed on people weaker than them. As he stood to confront Vedek, he saw him eyeing the small group of people as if he were looking for someone specific. Chellak wondered who.
"Vedek," Chellak addressed him coolly, not even giving him the respect of addressing him by his title as high ruler. He stood straight and proud, his arms crossed over his chest, daring Vedek to step out of line. He would like nothing better than to have a reason to kill him.
"Commander, it would seem you have me at a disadvantage. Your ... forces have over run my capitol, seized my palace, and taken that which does not belong to you. I wonder what the Federation would think of this?"
"I have the full support of the Federation, Vedek. Maybe if you had agreed to a peace compact with them, they would not have been so ... put out. However, your reluctance to cooperate with them has been to my advantage. As the new High Ruler of Katzmann, I have already signed a peace compact with them."
Chellak smiled to himself as he watched Vedek's face turn red with rage. He had refused to sign a peace compact with the Federation of Planets. He hadn't wanted to give up any of his power or agree to the Federation's guidelines. Chellak had no such problem as he agreed with most of their guidelines anyway.
"As a gesture of good faith to the Federation, I have agreed to let you and your family leave this planet without hindrance. You are allowed to take only your personal possessions with you. You have one hour. A transport ship is being prepared for you departure as we speak. If you are not ready by then, you leave with what you have."
Vedek started to argue but the steely-eyed look Chellak gave him made him reconsider his words. "Very well. But mark my words. I will be back. This is my kingdom."
"No, it was never yours. You took if by force. I took it back. Now go. Remember, you only have one hour to gather your belongings and leave my kingdom."
Chellak felt a lot of satisfaction when Vedek turned to leave knowing that he had beat him and reclaimed his father's throne. He hoped that his father would be proud of him.
Vedek paused briefly at the door and looked over at the group of cowering servants. "Sorina!" he bellowed, "Come. I need my belongings prepared for departure."
The old woman stood quicker than Chellak thought possible for a woman of her age and began scuffling slowly towards Vedek. Once she reached him, Vedek leaned down and started quietly talking in her ear. Unknown to Vedek, Chellak had superior hearing and heard every word he said.
"Where is the brüter? Did it leave with my son?" Vedek asked.
"I do not know, master. Your son left so fast..." Sorina replied meekly.
"What do you mean you don't know? I told you myself to make sure the brüter got on that transport. You stupid woman!" Vedek yelled as he slapped the old woman across the face so hard that she fell to the floor. He took a threatening step towards the group of servants.
"Vedek!" Chellak yelled before storming over and leaning down to help the old woman to her feet. "My gesture of good will is wearing thin. You now have half of one hour to gather your personal possessions and leave Katzmann."
"But ... but ... I am only attempting to make sure that all of my personal possessions go with me, as you said. It would seem that something which belongs to me has been ... misplaced."
"And that would be?" He asked curious as to what the brüter was. He had never heard that particular word before.
"Uh ... the brüter. It is mine. I paid for it. Bought off world with my own money, and I have the ownership papers to prove it. It belongs to me."
Vedek seemed very possessive of this brüter. Chellak still didn't know what it was, but he knew he would have it, even if it was just to make Vedek pay for killing his father.
"Not anymore. I claim it in reparation for my father's life, which you took. The brüter now belongs to me. You will bring me the ownership papers before you leave and sign it over to me," Chellak demanded smugly as he crossed his arms over his chest again. He raised an eyebrow, begging Vedek to argue with him.
"Varl, you will ensure that Vedek returns with the ownership papers for the brüter before he leaves," he commanded of his friend and pridemate, Trajan Varl.
Chellak was proud of those he considered his pridemates. His pride was small, just a few men he considered his brothers, even if they had no blood relation, but he trusted each of them with his life.
Pridemates were like that. Katzmen were grouped together at an early age with others like themselves. They lived together, trained together, and fought together. They were a family, a pride.
Vedek sprouted a few choice words as Varl escorted him from the room to gather his possessions. He would be under guard until his transport ship lifted off and left their space. Chellak didn't trust him as far as he could throw him. Chellak stood watching Vedek leave, hearing his brother walk up behind him.
"What in the hell is a brüter?" Ciprian whispered in Chellak's ear.
"I have no idea. But Vedek seemed to want it real bad. That means he definitely doesn't need to have it. Whatever it is, it's mine now," Chellak replied before turning back to the old woman and softly holding her hand.
"Matriz," He respectfully addressed her as benefiting her age and status as an elder, "Can you tell me where this ... brüter ... is?"
The old woman braved looking into Chellak's questioning eyes, staring at him for several moments. She seemed to be considering him, measuring his worth. Chellak stood there under her perceptive eyes, giving her the time to make up her mind.
"Why do you want the brüter?"
"I need to know if it's something that Vedek can use against us to try and regain control of Katzmann. The more information I have to fight him, the better. Besides, if Vedek wants something that desperately, he shouldn't have it," Chellak answered honestly.
The old woman shook her head sadly at his words. "Then I am sorry, master, I can not give you the brüter. I will make sure he never has it, but I will not give it to you either," she said defiantly. "I can promise you that the brüter in no way a threat to you or to Katzmann."
"Can I ask why you won't give it to me? I understand that you do not trust me. Trust has to be earned. But am I not a better choice than Vedek for possession of this brüter?"
"Oh, I have no doubt that you would be a better choice than Vedek. Anyone would be a better choice than that snake. But the brüter is a precious treasure, more valuable than words can even express. As of yet, you have not earned the right to possess this gift."
Chellak thought this over for several moments before nodding his head. If the brüter was indeed just a treasure and not a weapon, he could wait awhile to have it. He had more pressing matters to deal with, like getting Vedek off world.
"Alright, Matriz. You keep your little brüter safe and sound until I have earned your trust. I leave this ... precious treasure ... in your hands. Do not let Vedek have it."
"I have spent many years keeping the brüter from Vedek and his vile son. Sometimes I didn't do a good job, but mostly the brüter has been safe. I will continue keep the brüter safe until the breath leaves my body, master."
Chellak had to wonder at the tenacity of her words. What made the brüter so special that this old woman would dedicate her life to keeping it safe? The more he heard about this brüter, the more intrigued he became. Maybe he would have to find out more about this brüter when he had the time.
"I understand your need to keep the brüter safe, but can you help me with a few other matters? You're been here a longtime, you know who is who, what is what. I need to know who I can trust and who is going to stab me in the back."
"You would ask me this?" the old woman asked in wonder. "Why, master?"
"Anyone that would argue so vehemently to keep something from Vedek can't be all that bad. Besides, as a servant working in the palace, you probably know more of what goes on here than anyone else. People tend to ... overlook servants."
"Especially little old ladies?" she cackled. "I have been a servant for Vedek and his family for nearly thirty years. I have heard and seen a lot more than they think."
"Exactly. Now, would you mind having a refreshment with me while we talk? I think we have a little time before Vedek comes back with the ownership papers. Tell me everything you know."
Chellak held out his arm and waited for Sorina to take it, then escorted her to a table in one of the side alcoves to talk. He had just a little time to learn as much as he could from the old woman before Vedek returned. The more he knew the better.
He held out a chair for the old woman before sitting down across from her. He poured them both a glass of danga juice from his pouch. Taking a small drink of the sweet tasting fruit juice, he set his glass down on the table and looked at the woman.
"So, what should I know?" he asked.
Sorina set her glass down on the table and looked at the lion man who had conquered her planet in the last few hours. He looked like a strong man, and a just man. Whether he really was, remained to be seen.
"I remember you from when you were a boy. You are Seanna's son."
"Yes, I am Seanna's son, but, I don't remember much about her. She died when I was very young."
"She was a good woman. She would have been proud of you for coming back and avenging your father, just as your father would have been. You can do a lot of good here, master."
"Please don't call me master. Call me Chellak or commander, if it makes you more comfortable."
"Are you not now my master?" she asked skeptically. It had been many years since she had addressed someone of Chellak's rank as anything other than master. It was the way of things now.
"No. I am the high ruler, true, but I am not your master."
"It is not acceptable to address you as anything other than master. As a slave, I know that well. If you are not our master, does that mean we still belong to Vedek?" This worried Sorina.
"Slave? Vedek had slaves?" Chellak nearly yelled his outrage at the thought. He knew that many out lying planets still had slavery, but the Federation had outlawed slavery many years ago. He supported that ideal. Slavery disgusted him.
"Of course, don't you own slaves?"
"No! That's one of the reasons I signed a peace compact with the Federation of Planets. They've outlawed slavery." Chellak ran a hand through his hair in agitation. Reclaiming this planet would be harder than he thought. Vedek apparently had implemented a lot of things that he was against. It would take time to undo it all.
"Ciprian, I need you to write something up about the rules against slavery as dictated by the Federation of Planets," Chellak said. "Better yet, draw up a list of all the new federation laws and have it posted through out the kingdom. I want any and all slaves freed immediately."
"Master ... uh ... Chellak, if you plan on making it against the law to have slaves, you need to be prepared for the number of displaced people you will have on your hands. There are many in the realm that own slaves. If it is against the law, they will just throw them out in the street. These people will have no where to go."
"Damn! You're right. I didn't think of that," Chellak said, wondering what else he hadn't thought of. No wonder his father often had a headache when he came home at night. This leadership stuff took a lot of work.
"I have an idea, if I may," Sorina interjected. At Chellak's look of interest she continued. "Since it is against the law, or at least it was before Vedek, and apparently is now again. Why don't you fine all those who have slaves? I'm not really sure that laws against slavery were ever really taken off the books. People just sort of started getting them when Vedek did, mostly his cronies and those that are very rich. If you fine them, that might help pay for these newly freed people to live."
"That's a great idea, Sorina. In fact, I'm putting you in charge of that. Decide what needs to be done, go over it with Ciprian, and do it."
To say she felt shocked that Chellak was giving her, a mere slave, such a responsibility and outlawing slavery, would have been an understatement. Maybe he was strong enough to keep the brüter safe after all.
Sorina jumped in surprise when the main doors flew open and Vedek walked in, his long purple robes flowing behind him. She quickly stood up from her seat and took a step towards Chellak for protection.
Vedek stomped up to the table and slapped an ownership disk down on the table. "Here! Is this what you wanted?"
Chellak picked up the disk and carefully went over the data. He handed it to Sorina for her consideration. "Is this everything I need for ownership of the brüter?"
Sorina read over the data as carefully as Chellak did before shaking her head as she handed the disk back to him. "No, while this is the correct data file, there is still the official certificate of ownership and the ring."
Vedek huffed and puffed. "How dare you, you insolent slave. You will be severely punished for this, Sorina."
Sorina stood up tall and proud as she could and she looked Vedek right in the face, defying his dictate of thirty years that said she couldn't and smiled. "You can't punish me, Vedek. I don't belong to you anymore."
"Oh, and you think your new master won't punish you? He will, mark my words, he will punish you," Vedek sneered.
"Oh, but that's where you're wrong, Vedek. Chellak's not my new master. He just freed me. I won't be punished by anyone, certainly not you." The astonished and outraged look on Vedek's face was almost worth the last thirty years ... almost. Taking the brüter from him would be the icing on the cake.
"Now, Vedek, I believe that Matriz Sorina said something about an official certificate and a ring of ownership? Please hand it over to her."
"To her? Why would I give it to her?"
"Because I am putting Matriz Sorina in charge of the brüter."
Vedek shot glares of hatred at Chellak and Sorina. He dug out the official certificate of ownership out of his robes, tossing it on the table. Pulling the ring off of his finger, he tossed it down as well.
As guards escorted Vedek from the room, Sorina smiled bigger than she had in years. She turned to Chellak to thank him only to be surprised when he handed her the data disk, ownership papers, and ring.
"When you believe I am ready, Matriz Sorina, when you feel you can trust me, please return these to me. Until then, I leave the brüter safely in your hands. If anyone gives you any problems about it, come to me and I will take care of it."
"I believe you're ready now, Chellan Rai," she stated as she handed everything back to him. She nodded to the small group of people on the other side of the room.
Chellak turned to the small group, surprised when their ranks divided to reveal a small figure in a white hooded cape. The small figure came forward several steps before stopping in front of Sorina.
"Chellak Rai, I give you the brüter, Demyan. Demyan, you're new master."
The small figure dropped to his knees before him and small delicate hands reached up to lower the hood, revealing the exquisite man beneath.
Chellak felt the world drop out from beneath his feet at the sight of the beauty before him. As one of the katzmen race, he immediately knew he looked at his future, his mate.
The brüter was small and delicate looking, his features fine boned, and nearly pearly white. He couldn't have been more than 5'4" and maybe 125 pounds. A soft white leather shirt stretched over his chest, white leather pant covered his legs. A long, white blond braid fell nearly to his knees.
Chellak felt the blood in his body begin to boil at the site of the young man. He had never seen anyone so perfect in his life. The smell of delicate moonflowers and summer rain filled his nostrils to overflowing. His cock thickened in his tight leather pants.
But the scent of fear overshadowed his pleasure and brought Chellak back to reality. The small man kneeling before him, head bowed, was terrified. His submissive behavior provoked Chellak's possessive instincts, while his vulnerability called forth his protectiveness.
He had an overwhelming need to take the fear from the small man, protect him from the world, and to possess him for himself. Chellak had never felt anything like it, ever. It was all he could do to not pull the delicate man into his arms and spirit him away.
The little man still would not raise his head to look at him. Chellak looked over at Sorian, confused by the man's presence. She had said that this beautiful man was the brüter. But how could that be?
"Sorina? I don't understand. He is the brüter? I thought it was a jewel or something. Not a man."
"In his own way, he is the most precious of jewels. And now you are his master. He belongs to you," she smiled indulgently as if she knew something he did not.
"Belongs to me? Sorina, I can't be his master," he said disgusted at the thought of owning another person, but unable to deny that joy filled him at the thought of having this beautiful creature to himself. "I'm trying to outlaw slavery, not encourage it. How can I possibly do this to him? Wouldn't it be easier if I just set him free?"
"You can't. He can never be set free. It is a condition set down by his original owner. He has to have a master. If you don't take him, Vedek can reclaim him. Why do you think he gave in so easily? He knows you agreed with the Federation to outlaw slavery. He's counting on that."
"What in the hell am I supposed to do with him?" He sighed deeply when he felt the small man trembling. Leaning down, he grabbed the young man's hand and pulled him to his feet, feeling a small tingle shoot through his hand at the touch of their hands.
He felt the little man flinch from him as he gently held his face and tilted it up to his. The brüter had to tilt his head all the way back just to look up at Chellak. His eyelashes were lowered submissively. Everything in Chellak screamed for him to protect this beautiful little man, to keep him safe.
"How do you feel about all of this, beautiful? Do you understand that I do not like slavery? I would rather set you free. Don't you want to be free? Make your own decisions? Have a life of your own? Be your own master?"
The brüter's only response was to lower his eyes back down to the floor and shake his head. But not before Chellak saw the panic and overwhelming fear in his eyes. He gently patted him on the back, afraid if he touched him any harder he would break the fragile looking man. "It's alright. We'll figure something out," he assured him.
"Does that mean you'll keep him then, Commander? You'll keep him safe and not let Vedek have him? Vedek would destroy him."
"Yeah, I'll keep him. I still do not support slavery. But I will not let Vedek have him," He replied reluctantly as he looked down at the little man before him. "Why does Vedek want him so bad? Why is he so special?"
"He is a brüter, commander."
"Brüter ... what is that? I don't think I have ever heard that term before."
"A brüter is a brüter. That is what he is."
"I still don't understand. What is a brüter? Is that his race? Where he's from? What?" Chellak looked back down at the brüter. "I have never encountered someone that looks like him, and I have met a lot of different races in my time. But never one as ... beautiful ... as he is," he said, his voice dropping off to nearly a whisper in the end as he gazed down at the lovely figure before him.
Chellak felt confused by the emotions swirling around inside of him. He abhorred slavery in every fashion. But this once, just this single time, part of him was grateful for the practice. It would give him the means to keep the little man for himself.
"His people are from the Quentara sector, the planet Elquone. They tend to keep to themselves and don't have much to do with off worlders. The brüter was raised there for several years until Viorel Vedek became aware of him during a trade mission. Viorel is easily ... distracted from his duties. Vortigern Vedek saw an opportunity to control his son by giving him the brüter, something to keep him occupied with instead of creating havoc around the realm."
Chellak didn't know what to think of that. Vortigern Vedek had bought the brüter to give to his son to keep him from being distracted? Distracted by what? He would have thought that the brüter would be a bigger distraction than anything else.
"Alright, so what do I do with him?" Chellak wondered out loud, not that he didn't have a few ideas as to what to do with the beautiful man. However, most of them involved the nearest flat surface and some privacy.
"He belongs to you. You can do anything you wish with him. He is yours now."
"Well, hell, okay, you'd better come with me then. And try to keep up," Chellak stated to the little man. "Do you have a name? I can't just keep calling you the brüter."
"His name is Demyan, Commander," Sorina replied for him as she reached over and carefully pulled the white hood back up to cover his head.
"Is there some reason you keep answering for him? Can't he speak for himself?" Chellak asked curiously.
"No, commander. Viorel damaged his vocal cords when Demyan ... denied him. Viorel tried to strangle him. He became very angry that time. I wasn't sure Demyan would survive. It took a lot to bring him back. He has not spoken a word since. That happened over three years ago."
"That time? There have been others?" Chellak asked horrified.
"Yes, Demyan has been punished many times by Viorel for his disobedience. Despite his training, Demyan is not an exemplar slave. However, I can not blame him. I would not want Viorel's hands on me either. Viorel has damaged more than one slave from his ... exuberance."
"Hmmm, yes, I can imagine what that must have been like." And he could. Chellak had met Viorel several times through out the years and he was an evil cruel man that delighted in the pain and misery of others.
Many brothels throughout the system refused to have Viorel as a patron because of the damage he did to their pleasure workers. Chellak hated to think of what kind of damage Viorel might have done to Demyan. Being so delicate and small, Viorel would have taken great pleasure out of mastering him.
The protective instincts bred into his kind for centuries rushed forward and Chellak decided there and then that Demyan would never be hurt by anyone again. He would protect him.
"Come on, beautiful, we have work to do to get this place back into shape. Stick close to me, okay? I don't want you leaving my side until I say so. Understand?"
He nodded his head and turned to stand a small step behind him. Chellak just shook his head wondering what he would do with Demyan. He wanted to claim him as his mate, but he would never force himself on someone, no matter how much he wanted him.
Demyan was terrified that the katzman would turn him over to Viorel if he didn't do exactly as ordered. He had been punished before, many times, for his disobedience. He didn't have any idea what sort of punishment the katzman would take out on him, but anything had to better than being given back to Viorel Vedek.
Sorina had often suffered punishment for hiding him from Viorel and he would forever be grateful to her for shielding him. But he also felt a great amount of guilt over the punishment she had received. It hadn't been right that someone else should suffer for his misdeeds.
Demyan had been very excited when the bombs had started to fall on the Capitol City and the invading forces had stormed the palace. Sorina had hidden him and told him not to come out until she called for him. Viorel had been looking for him and Demyan knew that if Viorel got him off world, he would not survive it. So, he had hid, even when the palace had been seized.
When he had first seen the large katzman when he had stormed into the great hall, the power and strength emanating from him had intrigued him. Demyan had been hiding amongst the other slaves, hoping to stay hidden. And he had watched the katzman, captivated by his self-assured presence.
The katzman was the biggest man he had ever seen, bigger than even Viorel. He had to be at least a foot taller than Demyan, if not more, and well over a hundred pounds heavier. But he carried it well, like a warrior.
Demyan had been intrigued with how well the katzman's tight black leather pants hugged his thick muscular legs. The vest covering his well-muscled chest only added to the large man's allure.
He had been confused by the deep desire he had to run his fingers through the man's long golden hair, pulling it from the tie that kept it back from his face. He had never felt that way before, but this man had captured his attention.
His features were neither man nor cat, but both. He had small pointed ears on the top of his head, a small protruding cat like nose, and what seemed like a fine misting of fuzzy hair all over his body.
His eyes were what fascinated Demyan the most, though. They were deep, black, and intense, as if the commander knew exactly what someone thought just by looking at them. So much so that Demyan had ducked behind the other slaves when the katzman began asking about their small group.
Then the high ruler had walked in escorted by armed guards on each side of him. Demyan had wanted to jump for joy when he had heard the katzman say that Vedek had to leave the planet, until he said that Vedek could take his personal property with him. Demyan knew he would be considered property because of his slave status. Did that mean he had to leave with Vedek?
When Vedek had been ordered to turn over ownership of the brüter to the katzman, Demyan didn't know whether to be happy about it or not. Almost anything had to be better than Viorel. The katzman was an unknown. Would he treat Demyan better or worse than Viorel?
Demyan had watched Sorina talking to the katzman, wishing he could hear what they discussed. He knew it had to be about him. Sorina kept gesturing to the papers that Vedek had returned to the katzman.
He nearly fell to his knees when Sorina gestured to him and the crowd parted for him to walk forward. He took a deep breath and walked towards the katzman, his legs shaking the entire way.
Kneeling in front of the large katzman, he held his breath again, hoping Sorina knew what she was doing by giving his ownership papers to the commander. What kind of master would he be? When the katzman had grabbed his hand and lifted him up, Demyan had been puzzled by the shock that had run through his hand at the touch.
Then he had heard the words that had sent terror shooting through his heart. The katzman didn't want him. Even Demyan had known what that had meant. Vedek could claim him if he didn't. He had not been able contain the trembling in his body.
He had watched the katzman from beneath his eyelashes as Chellak had considered him. His unwavering eyes were so very watchful. What did he see when he looked at Demyan? Would he see a slave, a possession to use as he saw fit like the Vedek's had? Or would he see a person, a living breathing person? Would he even care?
But now ... now the katzman had decided to keep him. Sorina seemed overjoyed with the prospect. Demyan would reserve judgment until he found out what kind of man he actually was.
For now, he would make sure he did everything the katzman ordered him to do. He still felt the aches and pains from the last time that Viorel had punished him. He didn't know if he could take any more right now.