For fellow writer, FhantomPhann33. If you haven't read her works, then you don't know what you're missing! I had posted this once, but due to personal issues on my end, I'd taken it down. Now it's here to stay. I own nothing except Parisa.
Chapter one: Parisa
Raoul de Chagney held the shah's gaze as he set the papers down. He nodded his head. "This is indeed a profitable arrangement. I shall need some time to discuss this with my counsel."
Raoul bowed courteously. "I understand, several countries have had the same offer, but their rulers did not have your wisdom."
The queen laughed lightly. "Careful my Lord, he has a silver tongue. But he shall need a guide while he is here. May I suggest…Parisa."
"Indeed he does." He turned to a guard and barked something at the man in Persian. The man nodded and ran out of the room. The shah smiled. "I ask that you stay a week to see the conditions underway."
Raoul nodded. "I thank you for your generous offer. I should be delighted."
"Good." The shah's eyes lit up and he gestured behind Raoul. "She shall be of service to you."
Raoul turned to see a young woman was hustled in by the guard who had left. The woman immediately bowed low to the ground before she stood up. She then averted her gaze and looked down at her feet.
"And this," the shah said. "is Parisa."
"Parisa." He said it gently. He noted how her she seemed to tremble slightly when he'd spoken her name. "It's a lovely name. Tell me, what does it mean?"
"Angelic…or like a fairy. Whichever term you prefer to use." The shah's eyes narrowed as he snapped something at the girl that caused her to look up at him. "Are you pleased with her?"
Raoul looked at the girl and took the sight of her in at a glance. She had long, rich, dark, reddish, mahogany hair that was loosely curled around her waist. She was…the most perfectly formed woman he'd ever seen.
She was wearing a rich, emerald green top that dipped low in the front to reveal her breasts. She had a petite waist and very curvaceous hips. The gold belt hung low on her waist. Her skin was lighter than any other woman's he'd seen in the palace. Her skirt was long, glittery and semi-transparent and the length ended just above her ankles. But the slits on her skirt went up to her hips.
She shifted under his gaze and he cleared his throat. "Well, like all men, I appreciate the sight of a beautiful woman. But, as I am promised to another," he lied smoothly. "it wouldn't be honorable of me to say more than that."
"Wisely spoken," the queen purred. "for she is the courtesan to my husband's most feared assassin." Her eyes sparkled with a mischief that spoke of danger. However, he was sure he caught a note of bitterness in her tone. "If you but touch her, he would surely kill you."
Raoul laughed. "Then it's a good thing I've no interest in her."
"Pity." The queen said.
"It is of no matter, you are under our protection. He is also gone a mission and is not expect to return for days." The Shah cackled. "Now, Parisa, you are to show Raoul de Chagney around the palace and whatever places he desires." Parisa looked nervous as she nodded. "Now, show him to his chambers, the chamber on the East Side of the wall. The one nearest to your masters."
Parisa nodded and spoke to him in fluent French. "Please, follow me."
Raoul couldn't keep the surprise out of his voice as he blurted out. "You speak French?"
She nodded. "My master, his home language was French. I am fluent in English as well."
"See," the shah said. "it's perfect. She speaks your language well. Now, if there is anything you require, do not hesitate to ask for it."
Raoul nodded and bowed politely at the shah and then followed Parisa out of the room. He couldn't help but stare at her out of the corner of his eyes. She was a beautiful woman, her eyes, were the most exotic he'd ever seen. It took all of his will power not to reach out and touch her.
They walked in silence along the way. Raoul forced himself to admire the intricate paintings on the walls instead of her. He began wishing that he hadn't taken on this assignment as an ambassador to the shah of Persia for his father. His father had wished to purchase several items from the shah of Persia. His father would have made the trip himself, but he had come down with a fever that taken a terrible toll on his strength. Now, Raoul wished that he had let someone else go in his place.
Moments later, the woman pushed a door open and stood on the outside of the door. "These are your chambers." Raoul nodded and gestured for her to enter. She looked surprised. "Nay, master Chagney! It is not fitting for a slave to go before the master!"
Raoul sighed. "In my country, a man shows courtesy for a woman. It is my wish you enter before me."
She glanced around nervously before entering the room. Raoul followed behind her and glanced around the room. It was luxurious. The room's décor was cream, green and gold. There were palms in gold pots around the room and rich gold and green carpets on the floor. Raoul nodded approvingly, it was a very lovely room, he'd be sorry to leave it.
"Are you pleased master Chagney?"
"Yes I am," he turned to Parisa and walked towards her. "Parisa, would it be too much to ask that you call me Raoul, in private at least?"
She frowned. "Why?"
He chuckled at her innocent expression. "Because I do not like to be called master. In my country, France, there aren't any slaves."
She nodded. "I see."
"Tell me, how come you speak fluent French and English?"
She bit her lip before saying. "I was born in France."
"Really?" He nudged her towards the couch and sat down beside her. "What are you doing here?"
"My father came here years ago." She glanced around as if she was afraid of being heard. "I cannot talk of this."
"If I were discovered-"
"I won't tell anyone." He said. "Are you a prisoner?"
She shook her head. "I am a courtesan."
"I don't see much a difference."
"Please," she stood up. "I-I really should be here. It's…my master. He wouldn't like it."
"I see." He stood up. "Thank you for showing me to this room. It's really nice. I think I am going to like it here." He looked at her and his voice caught in his throat. "Very much."
She bowed. "I shall see that your belongings are moved here."
She paused and dipped her head. As she closed the door behind her, he sighed and sank into a chair. This was not going to go well. Here he was, practically falling over himself for someone's slave girl and he had a girl back in Paris! Well, he wasn't engaged to Christine Daae at all, he was in love with her, or so he'd thought until he'd laid eyes on Parisa. She had somehow managed to capture his attention with a single glance and he didn't understand what had happened between them in that short time.