Westward Bound: A Novel of Erotic Submission
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by Rod Harden
Category: Erotica/BDSM Erotica
Description: He Tied Her Hand and Foot Just Like His Cattle! When Clara Dove takes the stagecoach West to begin her new job as school teacher in a ranching town, she little realizes the fate that awaits her. First she meets Early Cummings, loner, cattleman, and secret dom, with a yen for tying women up, who kidnaps her, binds her and spirits Clare to his home to make her his slave. Clara thinks she hates Early for the things he makes her feel, as she responds to being shackled and made to do his bidding. But she begins to realize there are much worse men in the West when she is stolen from Early and trained to be a human puppet who responds to any demand men make. Now that it is too late, Clara knows she has come to love Early. And Early, who has learned the same, is searching for her. But the west is big and even the intrepid cowboy thinks the odds are hopeless.
eBook Publisher: Renaissance E Books/Sizzler Editions,
eBookwise Release Date: April 2008
31 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [369 KB]
Reading time: 241-338 min.
CHAPTER 1: CHEYENNE'S NEWEST RESIDENT
I hide myself within my flower,
That, fading from your vase,
You, unsuspecting, feel for me
Almost a loneliness.
By the time the stagecoach pulled into Cheyenne, Clara Dove had become almost accustomed to its incessant jarring motion. It was a far cry from the gentle sway of the train she had taken from Massachusetts to Denver.
Her entire journey was supposed to have been by rail, but a freak storm had damaged the track by Greeley, and rather than wait, she had decided to take the stage. Now she realized that may have been the wrong choice. The repairs hadn't taken as long as expected, and she was beginning to wonder if traveling the heavily rutted road by stage had damaged her brain.
Clara sat motionless for a moment as the dust raised by the stagecoach's arrival settled outside. She felt like she needed to let the internal rattling subside as well before she could move, but the driver was already at the door, holding it open for her.
"This is your stop, Miss."
"Oh yes, thank you." Clara managed to climb down, as the second driver handed her bags down to the first. Her belongings didn't amount to much, but she would still need help getting her things moved into her new accommodations.
She looked around as the driver guided the stage around for a change of horses before continuing on to Laramie. A Mr. O'Neil was supposed to meet her, assuming he received the telegraph she'd sent from Denver regarding her change of mode.
She didn't have to wait long before a thin, older gentleman with bushy grey sideburns approached her tentatively. He wore a bowler on his balding head and an open vest over a well worn shirt.
"You can't be Miss Dove, can you?" he asked skeptically.
"Yes, I am. Why do you sound so incredulous?"
"Incredu--What?" he said, grabbing his bowler as if the unfamiliar word might blow it off his head. Then, apparently remembering his manners, he took it off completely. "Pleased to make your acquaintance, Miss Dove. Robert O'Neil at your service. Now, I don't know what that word you just said means, but if you're wondering why I'm surprised, well, it's just that you ain't nothing like what I expected for our new schoolmarm."
"I see," she laughed modestly. "What did you expect, Mr. O'Neil?"
"Oh, you know, ma'am. A woman that's a little more ... Well, that is to say, not quite so ... Aw, shoot! Now, don't take this the wrong way, 'cause I'm a happily married man and all, but you're just too fine looking a young lady to be a schoolmarm, and that's a fact!"
Clara blushed and glanced downward for an awkward second. "Why thank you, Mr. O'Neil." Of course, she'd actually had a fair idea what had surprised him. He'd simply been told that she was single, and no doubt expected an old widow, or perhaps a homely younger woman.
Clara was neither. In fact, she was "fair beyond compare" as her father used to gush. He'd doted on his beautiful little girl all through her childhood. And as she blossomed into an equally beautiful young woman, he used to boast that she could have any man she wanted from any family from Boston to New York.
But Clara preferred not to think of her father now, and put the memories out of her mind. "I assume you have a carriage? Is there someone who can help with my bags?"
"Oh, I can get them, Miss Dove. I may not look like much, but what I got is pretty much all muscle."
Indeed, she had to agree with his self description, as he donned his bowler again and snatched up her luggage with hardly a thought. Nodding down the road, he led her to one of the buggies hitched nearby and hefted the bags into the back.
She climbed onto the passenger side of the bench up front and waited for him to join her.
"Now, Miss Dove," he scolded as he climbed onto the bench himself, "I didn't mean for you to climb into the carriage yourself. You should've waited for me to help you up!"
"It's all right, Mr. O'Neil. Like yourself, I'm not as fragile as I may look."
"Perhaps. But you're still a lady, and my daddy always taught me to help a lady into a buggy."
"Of course, I meant no offense. I'll remember to wait next time."
Soon the pair of horses was trotting down the main road of town. O'Neil pointed out the businesses as they went. There was a saloon, a bank, a hotel, another saloon, and his own general store.
"You'll be needing supplies, of course, and I got it all."
"Yes," she agreed, making note of where O'Neil's General Store was situated.
"The schoolhouse is just around this corner," he continued, steering the horses to the right. "And your apartment is in back. It ain't much, but it's all yours. Plus that dollar a week salary, of course."
"Yes, thank you, Mr. O'Neil. I think the arrangement is most generous."
He reined the horses to a stop in front of a small, unmarked structure. He glanced at Clara as if to say "don't move" and hopped down. Clara smiled and waited for him to circle around and extend his hand to help her down from the carriage.
"You can go right on in, ma'am, while I bring in your bags."
Clara did exactly that. The front room was unmistakably a classroom, with its rows of benches filling the bulk of the space and a single desk and pot belly stove at one end. That was it. No shelves or cupboards. Not even blackboard or chalk. In the middle of the far wall was a door, which she assumed led to her apartment.
By the time she took in the classroom and headed for the door, O'Neil was behind her with the bags. She led the way through the door. Like the schoolroom itself, her apartment was a single open space. It was furnished with a table and chair, a rough dresser and cabinet, a bed with a straw mattress, and another pot belly stove. A bed pan sat on the floor at the foot of the bed, and a water bowl and pitcher sat on the table. Along the opposite wall, another door led out the back of the house.
O'Neil set her bags down in the middle of the room and rubbed his shoulder. "That one bag's right heavy, Miss Dove. What've you got in it? An anvil?"
"No," she laughed, "just some books."
"Oh, you didn't need to bring no books. Most of the kids have their own Bibles to study from."
"Well, these are for my own use." She stooped down and opened the luggage. "See. Here's my volume of Shakespeare, my Bible, a copy of Homer..."
"What's that one there?"
"This?" she asked, indicated a small volume with rough-edged pages and hand-stitched binding. "It's a collection of poems."
"Pomes, huh? I ain't never seen no need for no pomes."
"Mr. O'Neil, I'm surprised at you!"
"Oh, sorry, Miss Dove. I mean, I ain't ever seen no need for no pomes."
The lilting sounds of Clara's renewed laughter brought a smile to the old man's naturally grim face. "I wasn't correcting your grammar, Mr. O'Neil. I simply meant you seemed like a man who would appreciate a good rhyme."
"Oh, I doubt that, ma'am."
She quickly flipped through the pages. "Well, let's find out. Here's one you might enjoy," she said, and then recited: "The pedigree of honey / Does not concern the bee; / A clover, any time, to him / Is aristocracy."
She closed the book and smiled at him.
"That's it?" he said. "That's the whole pome?"
"Yes! Isn't it clever?"
He shrugged. "I reckon it ain't as bad as I thought it would be. You wrote that?"
"Heavens no! It was written by a woman I used to know back in Amherst. Her name is Emily Dickinson."
"Oh, I just figured it was yours ... I mean, the book looks handmade and all."
"It is. In fact, I made it myself. I copied the poems by hand and stitched it all together on my own. These are all of Miss Dickinson's poems."
"Well, that's all well and good, Miss Dove. But I best be getting back to the store." He pointed out the back door. "The privy's over yonder. You share it with my store and Wilson's saloon. And the water pump is around front, between here and the store. Now, if you'll excuse me, ma'am, I'll let you settle in."
"Settling in" didn't take long. With her entire worldly possessions in two cases, she was soon sitting at the table, thumbing through her little book of verse. Though she treasured it more than anything, it always brought back such sad memories.
Her father had forbidden her from visiting the odd woman who kept to herself and wrote equally odd bits of verse. Yet she had persisted. Just as she had persisted in being, as he called it, "headstrong, willful, and rude of tongue" when it came to her relations with suitors.
Father's impatience with her had grown with each young man who gave up trying to woo his daughter. One by one, her chances of marrying into the best families faded. And as his impatience turned into anger, he blamed it all on "that crazy old Dickinson spinster."
Finally, unable to do anything about Dickinson, and unwilling to support his unmarriageable daughter any longer, he'd arranged this teaching position for her and sent her on her way.
But that was all in the past now and there was no going back. She set the book aside and headed for the door. If she was going to get settled, she needed to go to Mr. O'Neil's store and pick up some supplies.
O'Neil greeted her warmly when she entered, and motioned for her to come straight back to the counter. He reached into the till and retrieved a dollar piece. Handing it to her, he said, "This here's an advance on your salary, Miss Dove. And you can get as much as you need today on account."
"Why, thank you, sir! You're much too generous. But I didn't arrive penniless, and I will be more than happy to pay you in full for whatever I require today."
"Suit yourself, ma'am."
She did accept the dollar, however, and then turned and headed toward the back where the dry goods were kept. Just then, the door opened and a man stepped in. Clara glanced over to him. He stopped in mid stride and returned her gaze.
His face was hard as granite, yet his eyes were harder still. They lingered for a moment and she felt as if they were penetrating her skull. When he let his stare roam down her body, she realized she was holding her breath, yet couldn't seem to get her lungs to work.
She saw his eyes narrow as they traced her womanly shape all the way to where her long skirt brushed the floorboard. She felt a sudden warmth flood her very core and yet she shivered.
The man reached up and tipped his hat. "Ma'am," he muttered.
"H--Hello," she whispered. Her mouth and throat were bone dry.
The man turned to Mr. O'Neil and tossed some coins onto the counter. "I'm paying on my account," he said.
O'Neil nodded and scooped up the coins.
And then, just as quickly as he'd come in, the man was gone.
Clara clutched her throat and finally managed to start breathing again. "Who was that?" she croaked at Mr. O'Neil.
"Oh, that's just Early Cummings, ma'am."
"Early? Is that his real name?"
"Oh, no, ma'am. Real name's Eli, but everyone calls him Early. Don't rightly know why myself. Lives north of town a piece. A loner, but mostly harmless."
O'Neil chuckled. "Well, Miss Dove, ain't nobody completely harmless, now is there?"
"No," she said. "I suppose no one is completely harmless."