FOXWOOD--Bed & Breakfast

_by Van © 2008


To see the actresses I would cast in HHH:THE MOTION PICTURE,

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AUTHOR'S NOTE: Okay, this isn't really an EPILOGUE, but more like Chapter 13, with a dash of Preview of Coming Attractions.  So shoot me. 


"Band Camp", the joking name the family gave the rehearsal sessions of "The Foxwood Consort", was drawing to a close.  They were practicing Women of Ireland, with their leader, Sydney, on the harp guitar, Alice on the upright bass, Constance on the recorder, Cricket on the dulcimer, and Hannah on the bohdran.  In Sydney's arrangement, they each took turns carrying the haunting, sweet melody, with the others in support.  The two exceptions were Cricket, as she was just learning her instrument, and Hannah.  There was no solo for the Irish Drum.  Nonetheless, the part was very demanding.  For most of the numbers in the Foxwood repertoire, Hannah and her bohdran simply carried the rhythm.  Granted, this often required complex drumming, but Women of Ireland was different.  It called for a uniquely delicate touch, with long runs of quiet, rapid pattering meant to evoke distant thunder... if she did it right.  Done wrong, it sounded like a giant woodpecker was loose in the rafters.  Done right... it could raise the small hairs on the back of the neck.

They came to the final bars.  Connie's recorder carried the complete, melancholy theme, one last time... then the music faded with a low rumble of Hannah's drum.

There was a pause of several seconds.

"Adequate," Sydney said, finally.

"Adequate?" Alice scoffed.  "It was perfect!"

"Uh, I was a little off," Cricket objected, shaking her head.

"How do you get to Carnegie Hall?" Constance inquired.

Cricket smiled.  "Okay, I'll practice."

"We were perfect," Alice reiterated, "especially Hannah."

Hannah blushed, and gave Sydney a shy glance.

"She was adequate," Sydney huffed, but her eyes were smiling.  "You all need to practice."

"Let's do Go Lassie Go," Constance suggested.

"Yeah, I love that one," Alice agreed.

"No, we need a new arrangement," Sydney said, then focused on Cricket.  "I need to write you a part, and you do need to practice."

"Yes, ma'am," Cricket sighed. "I said I would."

Sydney grinned, and put her hand on Cricket's shoulder.  "I know you will, and you're doing fine."  She turned to the others.  "Now, that's enough for today."

Alice regarded her cousin with open astonishment.  "Look, everyone!  Sydney smiled, and her face didn't crack!"

Everyone laughed, including Sydney, and began casing their instruments and stowing them in the large closet behind the stage.

"You are getting good," Sydney whispered to Hannah when the others were out of earshot.

"It's like you said," Hannah whispered back, "the bohdran takes a lifetime to master."

"As does any instrument.  Now... Her Ladyship wants to talk to you atop the main tower."

"Right away," Hannah nodded.  She hung her encased drum in its customary place and closed the closet door.  The others were already dispersing to various activities.

Sydney put a restraining hand on Hannah's arm.  "But first, I need to prepare you."

"Prepare me?"

Sydney focused on Connie's disappearing back.  "Scholar!" she shouted.

Constance turned in the doorway.  "I know, the tower!" she shouted back.  "I need to find the files Jillian wants."

"Okay!"  Sydney turned back to Hannah.

"Prepare me?" Hannah repeated.

Sydney's lips curled in an evil smile.  "My place," she purred, and led Hannah towards the Residents' Wing.
--- Tales of the Foxwood B&B: HHH EPILOGUE
Sydney changed into her "medieval running togs".  This consisted of olive tights, trail runners camouflaged to look like slipper-boots, and a brown, sleeveless tunic.  The outfit was styled after the "arming clothes" medieval warriors wore under their armor.  Historically, it was masculine attire, but the costume couldn't possibly disguise Sydney's feminine curves.  Her long, red curls were combed back and plaited in a tight, single braid that trailed down her back.

Hannah had stripped, then watched her girlfriend change, with leering appreciation.

Finally ready to deal with the grinning blonde, Sydney unlocked and removed Hannah's thrall's collar, then locked her ankles in shackles, her waist in an iron belt, her neck in a new collar, and her wrists in manacles.

The shackles were joined by a hobbling chain and the manacles were locked closely together, behind Hannah's back.  A connecting chain linked the hobble, the back of the belt, the manacles, and the back of the collar.  This set of hardware was substantially thicker, wider, and heavier than "standard" Foxwood dungeon-wear, including the chains.  All of the edges were well-rounded and the interior surfaces polished smooth, but the collar was twice as thick and wide and three times the weight of a thrall's collar.  Hannah's arms were folded, as in a box-tie, but her wrists were raised nearly to the level of her shoulder blades.  It wasn't quite as stringent as a reverse prayer, but it was bad enough.  The belt dimpled the flesh of her waist.

Hannah's best guess was that her new ensemble weighted at least twenty pounds, and probably more.  "Where the hell did this stuff come from?" she demanded.

Sydney's lips curled in her all-too-familiar evil, gloating smile.  "What makes you think I haven't had it in the back of my closet, all along, waiting for the right opportunity?"

"The patina," Hannah responded, "or rather, the lack of patina.  This is all new.  Also..."  She nodded at the key dangling from a thong in Sydney's hand.  "That's different."

"That new manufacturer of replica locks that Cody found," Sydney confirmed, then dropped the thong over her head and the key down the front of her tunic.  "Jillian's seriously thinking about replacing at least some of our hardware.  It'll be a phased replacement, of course."

"Some of our locks are getting a little worn," Hannah agreed.  "Loose tumblers and tired springs."

"Anyway," Sydney continued, "I picked up this stuff at Cody's, during my last trip into town.  You like?"

"No, I don't like," Hannah huffed.  "It's heavy."

Sydney stepped behind her prisoner.  "You have to expect this sort of thing," she purred, "when you're the helpless prisoner of 'cruel Cymric bastards'."

"Just you wait 'til my father's war band storms the Keep and—M'mmpfh!"

Sydney had dropped a ball-gag over Hannah's head, thrust the ball between her teeth, and was buckling its broad, primary strap at the nape of her neck.  A pair of thinner, secondary straps dangling from either side of the ball, and Sydney crossed these under Hannah's chin, pulled them tight to either side of her throat, and buckled them together in the back.  "We're not worried about bands of smelly, blond barbarians volunteering for target practice," she chuckled, then returned to the front and smiled at her prisoner.  The gag's mouth-filling ball was rubber, but it was covered with thin chamois.  "Now, let's go visit Her Ladyship, shall we?"

Hannah rolled her eyes and glared in helpless defiance.  The foul-tasting ball was already causing her to drool.

Sydney tied a length of rope to the ring in the front of Hannah's new, much heavier collar.  She picked up Hannah's old collar, gave the rope leash a firm tug, and led her prisoner towards the bedroom door.  "We don't want to keep Jillian waiting," she purred.  "She'll think we've been down here channeling the Bobbsey Twins, boinking away like crazed ferrets in defiance of her summons, and might decide to do horrible things to both of us... as opposed to just you."

Another lazy Foxwood afternoon, Hannah mused, as she trudged after her irritatingly smug girlfriend in her heavy, clinking and clanking chains.

Tales of the Foxwood B&B: HHH EPILOGUE ---
The entire top level of Foxwood's tallest tower was an open, hardwood deck, surrounded on all sides by wooden railings.  A peaked roof, supported by posts and an elaborate system of timber-frame joists, provided protection from the sun and rain.  It afforded a spectacular view of the valley and surrounding hills, and several groupings of outdoor furniture were arranged to let the residents and guests take full advantage.

The Evil Baroness and her Saxon Captive climbed the final steps to the deck and found the Lady of the Keep seated at a table for four, reading a book and sipping coffee.  She was wearing a velvet gown of dark jade, and greeted her sister and Hannah with a warm smile.  "Please, join me," she suggested, indicating the remaining chairs with a sweeping gesture.

Hannah clinked and clanked to the table in Sydney's wake.

"Move it along, slowpoke," Sydney growled.  When they reached the table she pointed at the deck.  "Down!"

Hannah rolled her eyes and dropped to her knees.

"Okay, she's here," Sydney announced, unnecessarily.  She dropped the empty thrall's collar on the table, untied Hannah's leash, then coiled the rope and dropped it on the table as well.  "I'm going for a run," she said, then turned and walked away.

"Coffee before you go?" Jillian inquired, pointing to the coffee service on the table.

Sydney shook her head.  "A long run!" she called back over her shoulder.  "I'll see you at dinner!  Don't worry about the key to the thrall's new toys!  I'll try not to lose it!"  She disappeared down the stairs.

"The one and only key," Jillian sighed, smiling at Hannah.  She stood and pulled a chair away from the table, then helped Hannah to her feet.  "Not to worry.  I'm sure there's a spare around here somewhere, and if we can't find it, we can always ask Cody to make a house call."

Hannah favored her boss with an unamused stare.  She knew she was being teased.

Jillian released the twin buckles of Hannah's gag and pulled the ball from her mouth.  "Coffee?" she offered, as she resumed her seat.

"You'll have to serve me," Hannah said, stating the obvious, and settled back in the chair.  This required a little squirming and twisting, to shift the connecting chain to one side.  "Just out of curiosity, what infraction of your precious rules did I commit to deserve all this hardware?"

Jillian smiled, poured coffee into a mug, then held it to Hannah's lips so she could take a careful sip.  "Just another indoctrination test," Her Ladyship purred.

"Okay, that does it!" Hannah snapped.  "I demand to see what else is on your damn list."

"My 'damn list'?" Jillian inquired, sipping her coffee with an innocent smile.

"Your list of indoctrination tests, or trials, or tortures, or whatever the hell you call them."

"Oh, that list," Jillian chuckled, then lifted Hannah's mug, again, so the captive could take another sip.  "I'll tell you a secret," she confided.  "There is no list."


"We're making this up as we go along," Jillian explained.  "Whatever sounds like a good way to have a little fun at the Saxon's expense, we do it."

Hannah stared in disbelief.  "We?"

Jillian smiled, sweetly.  "Sydney, of course, although I have to do extensive editing of most of her suggestions, as I'm sure you understand.  Then, there's Kayley, the Scholar, the Princess... meaning the other Princess, the red-haired one, not the blond barbarian Princess. The only one who hasn't come up with anything so far is Cricket, but I'm sure when she does think of something, it'll be a doozy... probably with an Elven theme."

Hannah was struggling to maintain her expression of Righteous Outrage.

Just then, Constance bounded up the steps and hurried to the table.  She had a leather portfolio under her arm.  "Sorry," she gasped, then glared at Jillian.  "You need to do a better job of filing things," she chided, and set the portfolio on the table.

Jillian chuckled, and gestured at an empty chair.  "I'll get busy reorganizing my office right away.  You found the files?"

Constance was staring at Hannah.  "Wow!" she whispered, then she turned back to Jillian and continued in her normal voice.  "Uh, yes, they're both here... there... in the portfolio."  She pulled out the chair and sat, then her gaze returned to Hannah.  "That stuff looks heavy."

"No, ya think?" Hannah drawled.  "You'll find out exactly how heavy, the next time I help you 'meditate'."

Constance smiled.  "Don't you dare," she whispered, and a delicate shudder shook her diminutive form—then she gasped.  "Wait!  What about the cage?  You promised I could try the cage!"

Jillian raised an eyebrow in question, and Hannah explained.  "I'm making a little wooden platform for the bottom of Cody's coffin-cage, so we can use it with pipsqueak damsels—like the scholar, here—without them looking even more ridiculous than usual."

"Platform?" Jillian asked.

"Several wooden disks that will nest together and snap into the bottom," Hannah explained.  "We can vary the number of discs according to the height of the 'victim'."

"I see," Jillian smiled.  "That way the occupant's profile..."  She traced an hourglass shape with her index fingers.  "...will always be at the correct height to match the cage's profile.  Good idea."

"Tell her about the spikes!" Constance suggested.

"Spikes?" Jillian demanded.

Hannah smiled.  "The top disk will be covered with tiny little spikes.  Don't worry, they'll look terrible, but I'm talkin' about closely-spaced, very dull spikes.  It'll be like wearing a pair of those, uh, what do you call them... massage sandals?"

"They'll make the feet very sensitive," Constance added, shuddering again.

"I see," Jillian said.  Clearly, she was still dubious.

"There'll be the option of flipping the top disk over, so the spikes are down," Hannah explained.  "They'll nest into holes in the second disk."

Jillian nodded.  "That sounds better."

"Jillian!" Constance complained.  "The spikes'll be okay."

"We'll see how you feel after thirty or forty hours," Hannah purred.

Constance shuddered, again, and her eyes widened in horror.  "You wouldn't do that to me... would you?"

"Little flirt," Jillian laughed.  "Coffee?"  Constance shook her head.  "Okay, then," Jillian continued, "to business."

--- Tales of the Foxwood B&B: HHH EPILOGUE ---
"First of all..."  Jillian reached into a small purse dangling from her belt and produced a key and a small iron object.

Hannah recognized one of the screw-lock cylinders that secured the back of a standard Foxwood thrall's collar; however, this one was different.  There was no keyhole.

"Cody made this for you," Jillian explained, then picked up Hannah's thrall's collar, used the key to unlock its cylinder, then replaced it with the new, key-less version.  She smiled at Hannah.  "No more tan line around that pretty throat.  From now on, when you're skinny-dipping at the pond or running on the trails, I order you to remove your collar."  She demonstrated the new cylinder's operation by pressing the top and giving the staple-ring at the base a twist.  The cylinder slid free and the collar opened.  "I'll let Sydney keep the old cylinder, of course, so she can lock you in your collar, whenever you've been naughty."

"You mean whenever she feels like being naughty," Hannah huffed, "which is most of the time... but thank you."

"You'll look much prettier without the tan line," Constance added, then blushed.  "Uh, not that you aren't pretty with the tan line... I just think, I mean we think..."  Her voice trailed off as Jillian and Hannah laughed.

"Silly scholar," Hannah chuckled.  "Kiss me."

Still blushing, Constance leaned to the side, and planted a kiss on Hannah's lips.  "And I'm the one that's supposed to be a flirt," the little brunette whispered as she resumed her seat.

"Thank you," Hannah reiterated, smiling at Jillian.

"You can both kiss me later," Jillian purred.  "Now, in addition to your promotion to 'trustee thrall', you're also promoted to 'apprentice trouper' in 'The Foxwood Family Players', in the role of... Captured Saxon."

"Sounds like a stretch," Hannah said, with a wry smile.

Jillian laughed.  "The rack won't be involved... most of the time."

Constance giggled and Hannah rolled her eyes.

"New players have to prove themselves in supporting roles," Jillian continued.  She turned to Constance.  "Have you two ever discussed the 'big picture' with respect to Foxwood's fantasy geography?"

"Uh, not really," Constance answered.

Hannah frowned.  "This isn't Wales?  Fantasy Wales, I mean," she clarified, "or rather... 'The Cymric Kingdom of Jillian-Orange-Hair'?"

Constance giggled, and Jillian favored her thrall with an expression of amused tolerance.  "Constance," Her Ladyship drawled, "remind me to add a scold's bridle to our next order from Archer Metals.  Anyway, please give us the extra-short version of your 'Guide to Middle-Earth, Foxwood Edition'."

"The extra-short version," Constance repeated.  She stared into the distance for several seconds; then continued.  "Well... Foxwood Valley is situated in a sort of no-man's-land between cultures, at a juncture of several caravan routes.  There are Hyborian Savages to the north, Desert Warriors to the south, and various kingdoms to the east and west, including the Elves."

"The collection of ramshackle pig farms your Saxon father laughingly calls his 'kingdom' is a month's hard travel to the east," Jillian explained.

"Oh... you mean the hilltop city of my birth that looks a lot like Edoras?" Hannah inquired.

Jillian laughed.  "Whatever."  She noticed Connie's slightly peeved expression and composed herself.  "Pray continue, scholar."

"Well," Constance huffed, "let's just say we get a lot of interesting guests staying at the Inn."  She glared at Jillian.  "Extra-short enough?"

"Well done, scholar," Jillian chuckled.  "There's raiding across nearby frontiers," she explained to Hannah, "but Foxwood is respected as neutral territory by all parties."

"A useful arrangement," Hannah suggested.

"Exactly," Jillian agreed, "and it makes for some very entertaining scenarios."

"It's sort of modeled on Al-Andalus, during the First Taifa Period," Constance lectured, "when Iberia was divided into a patchwork of squabbling Christian and Moorish states.  There were intolerant fanatics on both sides, of course; but mainly..."  She noticed Jillian's expression.  "Uh, right... extra-short version."  She passed her thumb and forefinger across her lips.  "Zipping."

"I should get college credit for this stuff," Hannah muttered.

Jillian smiled.  "Anyway..."  She reached into the portfolio and pulled out a folder.  "The timing is still uncertain, but your first role as 'Saxon Captive' will be during the next visit of two of our regulars.  The first is..."  She pulled out an eight-by-ten photo and dropped it on the table.  "Ashley Carleton, wife of Mitchel Carleton, CEO of Gort."
Jacqueline Collen as "Ashley Carleton"
Hannah gazed at the photo.  It was a posed portrait of a very attractive brunette, about Hannah's age.  "Gort?" she asked.

"Gort is a security service for ISP's and corporations with large server farms," Constance explained.  "They do consulting, hardware and software, and active network security monitoring.  Very successful.  Very rich."

"Ashley's a sweetheart," Jillian said, smiling at the glossy image.  "And this photo doesn't do her justice.  Her hair is a really pretty shade of russet, her eyes have these tiny little flakes of gold, and her lips—"

"And she's a sweetheart like Sydney's a sweetheart," Constance interrupted.  She gazed at the photo with a pouting frown on her pixie face.

Jillian chuckled.  "Just because you had such an interesting time during her last visit, that's no reason to make disparaging remarks about one of our best-paying guests."

"What happened?" Hannah inquired.

"No gossiping about guest activities, remember?" Jillian chuckled, then focused on Constance.  "You like her.  Admit it."

"Okay," Constance sighed, then grinned at Hannah.  "She really is a lot of fun... like Sydney."

"I can see why you wanted me in chains to talk about this," Hannah muttered.

Jillian laughed, then placed a second photo beside the first.  "I will tell you that Ashley's favorite role-playing character is that of a mercenary for hire.""Ashley—Amazon

"That's redundant," Constance said.  "Mercenary means 'for hire'."

Jillian regarded the scholar with an even stare.  "Make that two scold's bridles for Cody's next order."

Hannah smiled.  The second photo was of Ashley Carleton in a white linen shirt with long, loose sleeves, and a brown leather jerkin with a generous décolletage.  Her legs were bare, but the shirt and jerkin were long enough to serve as a sort of mini-dress.  The Evil Baroness Sydney had similar costumes.  A wide corset-belt of brown leather was cinched and buckled around her waist and a broadsword was slung behind her back.  The brown-haired beauty was outdoors, lit from behind by a beam of sunlight, and was caught in a pose of confident, graceful motion.  "She's a looker." Hannah noted.

"Wait 'til you see her in the Bath," Constance sighed.  "She's got a perfect figure, and she's a natural athlete.  She's gorgeous... like..."  Connie focused on Hannah, and blushed.

"Like you, Saxon," Jillian laughed, reached out and patted the embarrassed scholar's hand, then smiled at Hannah.  "She's tall," she continued, "taller that Kayley, in fact, by about an inch.  I won't say more, other than to agree that Ashley Carleton is, indeed, a looker..."  She shifted her gaze to Constance.  "A gorgeous looker."

Constance was still blushing, but her lips curled in a wry smile.  "Which is also redundant," she observed.

"Make sure that second scold's bridle is size 'small', with a spiked tongue-piece," Jillian purred, then gathered the photos, returned them to their folder, and pulled a second folder from the portfolio.  "Ashley will be bringing a friend on her next visit, a close friend."  She pulled a photo from the second folder.

"Pilar," Constance sighed.

"Pilar de la Calva," Jillian amplified, "professional photographer, and—"

"They've never been here together," Constance interrupted, "but they're really good friends, and..."  She noticed Jillian's mildly irritated expression, and again passed her finger and thumb across her lips.  "Zipping," she said, with a contrite smile.

Cote de Pablo as "Pilar de la Calva"Hannah's eyes were on the photo.  Pilar had a very expensive camera in her hands, and she was stunningly beautiful, with a Latin complexion, gorgeous doe eyes, and long, straight, black hair pulled back in a tight ponytail.  "Pilar de la Calva," she whispered.

"Born in South America," Jillian said.  "Chile, I believe, but her parents immigrated and she's lived in the US since early childhood."

"She has the coolest accent," Constance sighed, "just a hint of an accent, really, but her English is perfect.  Anyway, her voice is really sexy."

"'Zipping'?" Jillian quoted.  "Words have meanings, you know."

Constance blushed, then stuck her tongue out at the Lady of the Keep.  "We all love Pilar," she said to Hannah.  "She's a ton of fun."

"Another mercenary?" Hannah asked, then lifted her eyes from the photo and smiled at Constance.  "Meaning a mercenary for hire that will fight for money?"

Constance stuck out her tongue again, this time at Hannah.  "I refuse to be baited," she huffed.

Jillian laughed and shook her head.  "Mercenary?  No.  One of her characters is a wandering Jungle-elf."

"A what?" Hannah demanded.

"Jungle-elf," Constance answered, then focused on Jillian.  "To be extra-short about it..."

Jillian nodded, with a tolerant smile.

"Jungle-elves are from the tropics," Constance continued, "the other side of the Great Desert."  She pointed to the south.  "They all wear hammered gold cuffs on their upper arms and other gold jewelry, properly understated, of course.  Also, skimpy silk loincloths and bandeaus with folded pleats in a sort of Egyptian or Mesopotamian style."

"'Folded pleats'," Jillian purred.  "Isn't that redundant?"

Constance gave her boss a pained look, then continued.  "They look like one of those nearly naked amazons or slave-girls from the Lost City in one of those old Tarzan movies, only with pointy ears.  Very sexy and hot, done right, and Pilar pulls it off perfectly!"
"Pilar the Dancer"

"However..."  Jillian pulled out a second photo.

"Oh, Desert Nomad Dancer!" Constance squealed.  "That's my favorite!  It's Cricket's, too," she told Hannah.  "Pilar's taught her a lot of really cool moves."

"Belly dancing is one of Pilar's hobbies," Jillian explained, "and it's very good exercise."

"I'll say," Hannah sighed.  The photo showed Pilar in a skimpy, Middle Eastern costume, performing what was no doubt a very healthy and entertaining belly dance.  She had a lithe, well-toned figure, and while her breasts weren't particularly large, she was very hot.

"Pilar will, indeed, be playing a Desert Nomad Dancer during this visit," Jillian confirmed.

"I'm still working on the scenario," Constance said, then frowned at Jillian, "and nobody bothered to tell me that Pilar had decided to use her Dancer persona.  After all, I'm only the writer.  Now I'll have to do some re-writing."

Jillian smiled.  "You know very well that all concerned could improvise this entire thing on the fly."

Hannah smiled.  "Improvise on the fly?  Isn't that redundant?""

Jillian smiled.  "Did it ever occur to you two that I might like being repetitively redundant?"

Constance groaned and rolled her eyes.  "Enough, already," she muttered.  "I'm sorry I started this game.  Anyway, I spend hours thinking up critical dialog and little pieces of business for the lead characters."

Jillian smiled at Hannah.  "Connie does a masterful job, always.  However, the details she's talking about are for the benefit of her fellow players, not our guests.  They have a general idea of what's expected of them as things begin, then it's all improvisation... for them."  Jillian's smile turned rather sinister.  "Don't worry about your part in this, your first actual scenario with paying guests.  It will require a minimum of improvisation, and your lines will all be limited to variations on the phrase 'M'mmpfh'."

"That's what I was afraid of," Hannah sighed.

Jillian laughed as she returned the photos to the folder, then slid it back into the portfolio and handed it to Constance.  "Thank you scholar, and we have weeks, if not months, for you to work on your rewrites."

"Uh, you want me to..."  Constance gestured towards the stairs and Jillian nodded.  The little scholar stood, then placed a hand on Hannah's shoulder.  "Can I take Hannah with me, so she can finish working on the platform for the cage?"

"I'm afraid I have other tasks for my Resident Artisan," Jillian said, locking eyes with Hannah.

The scholar heaved a piteous sigh.

Jillian chuckled and shook her head.  "Oh, hand me the portfolio," she ordered, and Constance did so.  Jillian opened a large flap on the cover, revealing a set of pockets containing several small sheets of parchment-like paper, a pair of quills, a small bronze cylinder, and a short candle of red wax.

Hannah watched as Jillian used one of the quills—it was actually a ballpoint pen with a stiff feather mounted in its base—to scratch out a short note.  She then folded in the corners of the parchment and used what appeared to be a small propane lighter in the cylinder to light the candle.  She dribbled wax where the corners of the parchment met, then stamped the wax with the base of the cylinder, leaving the impression of a leaping fox.  She penned an elegant "K" on the reverse side, returned everything to the appropriate pockets and secured the flap, then handed the portfolio and the note to the scholar.

"The note's for Kay-bear?" Constance inquired, and Jillian nodded.  "Uh... what does it say?"

"You'll find out," Jillian answered, with an enigmatic smile.

Constance sighed, then favored Hannah with a Brave Smile.  "Well... Saxon... if we never meet again in this life... remember me fondly."

"Oh, I will," Hannah responded, with mock gravity.

 Constance sighed again, then executed a slow, graceful curtsy.  "You Ladyship," she said, took a step back, then turned and walked away, with head bowed.

"Drama queen!" Jillian admonished as Constance disappeared down the stairs.

The sound of muffled giggling echoed up the stairway, then the scholar was gone.

Hannah smiled at Jillian.  "What now?"

"What now, indeed," Jillian purred.
--- Tales of the Foxwood B&B: HHH EPILOGUE ---
Jillian gazed at Hannah for several seconds, a wry smile curling her lips.  "It occurs to me that in all the time since you've joined us at Foxwood, we've never had a chance to play."

Hannah blinked in surprise.  "Uh, I'd say that's probably the most spectacular and inaccurate understatement in the history of spectacular and inaccurate understatements," she said.

Jillian laughed.  "I mean really play," she continued.  "Every now and then... not very often, mind you... I allow my 'inner demoness' out of her cage.  Even Sydney is afraid of my inner demoness."

Hannah realized her pulse was pounding and her sex was tingling.

"Oh," Jillian whispered, "is that a fight-or-flight response?  But you can't do either, can you Hannah?"

Hannah swallowed, nervously. 
"Uh, Jillian," she said, "there's something I've been meaning to ask."

Jillian lifted an eyebrow in amused surprise.  "And now seems like a good time?"

Hannah's lips quivered in a nervous smile.  "Our guests eat all their meals in the Common Room—breakfast, lunch, and dinner—unless they want to go for a hike and Kayley packs them a lunch.  This place is a hotel, or a destination resort."

Jillian nodded.

"So, why do we call it a 'B&B'?"

Jillian laughed.  "Funny how the mind works... especially in times of stress.  Sometimes, trivial things can suddenly become important.  I think it's a kind of avoidance mechanism.  Anyway, to answer your question... you think 'B&B' is short for 'Bed and Breakfast'?"

Hannah nodded.

"No," Jillian continued, "try 'Bondage and Boinking'."

"That's terrible," Hannah groaned, "and it can't be true."

"We started out calling ourselves a Bed and Breakfast before we had Connie to police our use of the language," Jillian purred, "and I'm not going to change all the signs and paperwork.  Now, if you want to see 'terrible', keep up the attitude."  A chillingly sinister smile curling her lips, Jillian rose and walked to Hannah's chair.  She leaned close from behind, and began gently kneaded her breasts.

Hannah closed her eyes and purred in contentment
—then her eyes popped wide and she gasped as Jillian's hands tightened into claws.  "Jillian!" she complained.  "That hurts!"

Her Ladyship laughed.  "Quiet, thrall!" she growled.  "If I want to hear about your feelings, I'll torture it out of you."  She released her grip, used one hand to take a firm hold on the back of Hannah's collar, and let the other slide to the captive's crotch.

Hannah watched the white handprints on her breasts fade as the blood flowed back into the sensitive flesh, then she gasped, again, as Jillian thrust her fingers between her labia.

"Only a little wet," Jillian purred, her lips less than an inch from Hannah's right ear, "but with what I have planned... that will change."

Hannah tugged on her bonds.  This was a new Jillian, a different Jillian.  Gone was the protective, nurturing Lady of the Keep, who liked to tease and please.  In her place was a deliciously evil Jillian.  "Wh-what are you going to do to me?" she stammered.

Jillian laughed, slid her hand from Hannah's sex, then took a firm grip on her braids and pulled her head back.  "To start, it's what you are going to do to me," she whispered, then crushed Hannah's lips in a savage kiss.  After several seconds, she pulled back.  "I know what you've been up to," she purred.

"Wh-what?" Hannah gasped.

"You've been discussing open rebellion with Sydney and Kayley," Jillian responded.  "Imagine, a Saxon thrall thinking she could recruit my sister and my seneschal into a scheme of treacherous mutiny... that they would conspire with you, a blond barbarian captive, to render me helpless... that they would help you make me your thrall."

"As a game!" Hannah explained.  "Just as a game!  We all play at this stuff, but you never get to play."

Jillian laughed.  "Except as Mistress of the Keep."

"I... I mean... the other way," Hannah whispered.

Jillian laughed again, in a deliciously evil manner that sent shivers through Hannah's sex and up her spine.

"Saxon," Jillian whispered, "not even when Lady Lydia comes to visit does Jillian Foxwood play the other way."

"Lady Lydia comes here?"

Jillian smiled,  "And cums, and cums, and cums.  That's 'cum' with a 'U', of course."  She kissed Hannah again, then continued.  "In ropes, in chains, hideously restrained in every way imaginable...  I'm looking forward to her next visit, as is she.  You can't imagine how difficult it was for Lydia to keep her hands to herself when she had you naked and helpless in her dungeon.  Sometime, I'll let you read her e-mails on the subject."

"Really?" Hannah whispered.

Jillian released Hannah's braids and took a step back.  She then lifted the hem of her gown and reached under the dark jade, velvet folds.  There were a few seconds of fumbling, then she produced her loincloth.  She tossed the white linen cloth on the table, then turned and strolled to the far side of the deck.  She settled into a comfortable lounge chair, then smiled at Hannah.  "What are you waiting for, Saxon?" she inquired, with an exasperated sigh.  "Get on your knees and drag yourself over here.  Do I have to tell you everything?"

Hannah suppressed a smile.  A game, she thought, a rough game, but a game.  She blushed.  Of course it's a game.  I knew that.  She slid off the chair and onto her knees, then started shuffling towards Jillian.  The deck was hard and her chains restrictive and heavy, but the effort was more humiliating than punishing, the teasing sort of humiliation Hannah had come to expect during a Foxwood game.

"When you get halfway," Jillian purred, "flop onto your stomach and crawl the rest of the way."

Hannah sighed, and followed her orders.  At the midpoint, she dropped to the deck and began dragging herself forward.

"Poor, helpless Saxon Princess," Jillian teased.  "Her chains are so heavy and tight, and she's many, many miles from the borders of her father's kingdom, at the complete mercy of her enemies."

When Hannah finally arrived at Jillian's chair, she was slightly out of breath and a little sweaty.  Hannah might be in good shape, but she wasn't used to crawling like an inchworm while encumbered by many pounds of cold iron.

Jillian eased back in the chair's soft cushions, spread her legs, and lifted the front hem of her gown until her skirts were bunched across her waist.  Underneath, she was wearing brown knee boots and white linen stockings.  "It's going to be a long afternoon," she said, "and an even longer night.  We'll be eating dinner alone, in my room, and afterwards... I'm going to whip you."

Hannah caught her breath.  "Why?"

"Another broadening of your horizons," Jillian explained.  "Don't worry.  I won't draw blood, and I'll try my very best not to seriously mark all that glorious tan flesh... but you're not going to enjoy it."

Hannah swallowed, nervously.  Her pulse was pounding, again.  She didn't trust herself to say anything in response.  Her voice might break.
  This was taking things to a new level, again!  Was Jillian daring her to say no?  Was this a test of her ability to submit?  She knew Jillian didn't care for pushovers, that she wanted her to show some spirit.  Will I lose her respect if I submit to her whip?  Will I become just another sniveling subie in her eyes?

"I'll make it up to you," Jillian continued, still smiling the same wicked smile, "but only if you're a diligent thrall and perform whatever tasks are set before you."

Hannah stared at her Mistress's pale thighs, the pink, glistening folds of her sex, and the crimson curls of her pubic bush.  On the other hand, can I even say no?  Hannah tugged on her chains.  She wasn't exactly in a position of power.  Well... she decided, nothing ventured...

Hannah swallowed, again
, lifted herself up onto her knees, wet her lips, and leaned forward.

Jillian dropped her skirt over Hannah's head and shoulders, then gasped as Hannah thrust her tongue between the folds of her labia and gave her sex a slow lick.

Hannah took a deep breath, savoring the humid, musky air trapped under Jillian's skirts.  "Bondage and Boinking my ass," she muttered.

"That's the wrong kind of tongue wagging," Jillian warned... then shivered in delight.  "Oh, that's much better!" she growled, as Hannah began licking and probing in earnest.

"Keep that up," Her Ladyship sighed, "and you'll get a whipping and a raise."

Tales of the Foxwood B&B:
...& HELPFUL HARDWARE HANNAH... The Story, Entire.

Chapter 12
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