The centurion fell to one knee. "My queen," he said, pressing his forehead to the marble floor, "We have routed out the rebel leader."
A sackcloth bag was removed, and when Jared did not look up the soldier wrenched his hair back.
Danneel sat atop an ornate throne, great Bengal tigers seated at either side of her. Except for her jewels, she was completely naked, red hair piled beneath a black ostrich headdress, dark eyes glittering in the torchlight. She snapped her fingers, and a harem boy appeared with more wine.
"General," she said, watching him over the rim of her goblet, "How many men has he killed?"
The centurion bowed his head. "Hundreds."
She regarded Jared with an imperious swing of the eyes. He must have been formidable in battle, for he was a head taller than every other man in the room, with a swordsman's shoulders and hands so large he could have circled them about her waist. He had escaped with only his boots and a scanty loincloth, sweat ribboning down his bare, gleaming thews.
"Surrender," she said, running a hand along the tiger at her feet, "Or it will go badly for you."
His lip curled. "I don't treat with sorceresses."
The court gasped as one, but the queen raised her hand and they hushed.
"General, I think the hight priests may have found their next sacrifice," she said, her eyes bright, "Throw him...into the volcano!"
After much jeering from the other soldiers, Jared was ushered into the seraglio, where a concubine was tasked with preparing him for the ritual. Bath water was drawn, and waving away the other servants, the boy shut the heavy brass doors and threw the bolt.
The concubine looked up, wary. "Jared?"
Jared's eyes narrowed, for the boy was concealed behind a filmy veil. "Do I know you?"
Jensen uncovered his face. There were few candles in the room, but even so his skin glowed with a burnished luster, his green eyes rimmed in kohl and thin gold armbands circling his biceps.
"No, but I have tracked your army from afar," he said, dropping his voice, "Your men have crippled the city, but should you be defeated there will no one to unite the rebel clans. There are certain circles here that would see the Queen removed, for she keeps the city hostage through human sacrifice and necromancy most foul, so if there's any way I can aid you..."
Jared held up his wrists. "Strike off these shackles."
Jensen pursed his lips. "Even if you climbed the palace walls, your face is known for fifty miles in every direction. You would not get far."
Jared stepped into the bath, steam pinking his cheeks. He looked out a window and his gaze followed the distant mountain set against the stars, a place he'd only heard about in fairy tales.
"Can she be killed?" he asked, "Is there a way to vanquish her magic?"
"You needn't go so far," said Jensen, pressing a hand to his chest, "For there is another way..."
And he told him, Jared's face alternating between horror and a curious fascination.
"No," Jared said finally, rising from the bath, "Where is the honor in that?"
"You must live."
Jared stared into his burning, upturned face. "Why do you care if I live or die?"
Tears sprang into Jensen's eyes, but he blinked them back and composed himself.
"Then make peace with your god," said Jensen, his voice trembling as he cupped Jared's face, "For no prisoner has ever survived...the journey to Fuck Mountain."
Hours later, the royal procession reached the summit and the high priests called for silence. Jared lay stretched across a stone altar, censors burning frankincise as he struggled against his bonds. A great brass gong went baw-waaw-waaw and Danneel strode before her subjects, rubies at her throat and her black mantle snapping in the wind like bat wings.
She lifted a jeweled dagger from the belt on her thigh, and raised it for all to see. "Let him burn!"
"Wait!" said Jared, as she stood poised to strike at his heart, "I am innocent!"
She threw back her head and laughed. "Insolent dog! Your fate is sealed!"
"Not so," he said, his voice carrying easily over the crowd, "I demand...Trial by Fuck!"
Her eyes flared, and she looked at her high priests for confirmation. But the old men bowed their heads. "It is law, Your Highness," they said soberly, "It is law."
She whipped back round to look at Jared. "Very well," she said, replacing the dagger on her thigh, "Bring me my swords!"
Danneel clapped her hands and a slavegirl rushed forth with an oaken chest, inside of which were several phalluses in brass scabbards. Grimcleaver. Widowpounder. Pink Fang. And her prize possession, Love-in-Idleness. As Jared was chained to an iron ring set in the altar, she plucked it out and girded her loins with a leather harness.
She stepped atop the altar, drawing herself to her full height. "Kneel before your queen." she said, one dainty foot on the back of his neck. Her supple form was outlined by the glow of hot lava, and as slavegirls came forward to oil him, Danneel twisted her fingers through his hair and bent low to whisper.
"You are not well used."
His cheeks flushed as she ran an expert thumb over his ass, smiling as he clenched around her fingertip.
"Pity," she said, as she pressed the tip against his quivering rose, "You would have made a fit courtesan."
And grabbing his hips, she leaned in slowly, watching him stretch over the first inch. He grit his teeth, the chain clinking against the hard stone. Nubian maidens formed a drum circle around the lip of the volcano and began a hypnotic song, a slow pulse that would quicken as the trial wore on. Danneel pushed forward again, the shaft swallowed up by it's new, glistening sheath until Jared's teeth sank into his lower lip.
"Submit while you still can, dog," she said, "Or you will not live to see your army again."
He twisted around to look at her. "Spare me your second chances, witch."
His face burned with humiliation, and a thought occurred to her. "Tales of your conquests have reached even my ears. Could it be that they were exaggerated? Could it be that you are, to use your word," she said, a wicked glitter in her eyes, "Innocent?"
At this, she pulled back and slammed into him, her pretty nails marking his skin as he cried out, and angling up slightly she began to pound into him.
An amused smile curved across her face. "You didn't take advantage of your time in the seraglio?" she said, "You made quite an impression on Green Eyes."
A sudden image of the concubine, head tilted back, lips parted, flooded his mind, and he felt his cock harden. Blood thrummed in his temples in time with the drums.
"He was a gift," she said breathily, "The youngest son of the Sultana over the sea. Barely eighteen."
Jared could not form words, the very breath fucked right out of his lungs as he ricocheted off her. He pictured himself kneeling before Jensen on silk sheets, his cock in the slave's fist, legs parted and begging to be impaled. He pushed this thought away, but he was right on the edge, his thick, dripping cock grinding against the altar.
"Cease your prattle, woman. You will not win with taunts."
"No," she said, "I win when you fuck back."
And it was true, the temptation to back into her, to offer up his ass like a bitch in heat, was growing stronger, and he would grow weary of resisting if he didn't come up with a plan of escape.
She placed her hand under his cock. "Do it," she said, "Finish it."
For a moment, he thought he might succumb, when his eyes flicked over the queen's retinue and alighted on a pair of green eyes. It might not have been his beloved, but he gained newfound strength, and stretching his arms over his head, the shackles tore like dry kindling and he let forth a lusty howl.
"That's...not possible!" she whispered, backing away from him.
Soldiers came forward, but the high priest threw up his hands. "Get back! The trial must go on, lest we anger our dread Fuck Lords!"
Slipping the jeweled dagger from her belt, Jared cut away the harness. Defeating her would be to extinguish her magic, and thus her hold on the barely contained volcano beneath them. "Rise," he said, still on his knees, "And suffer your destiny."
And grabbing her ass, he pulled her close and buried his face between her thighs. Her mouth fell open, her spine rigid as she struggled to maintain her power, the tenuous thread linking her to her whispering masters across the Void. But he was stronger, and soon her fingers slipped into his hair, tugging him closer as she rutted against his warm, sucking mouth.
"No..." she gasped, his tongue widening her as the ground split beneath her feet, "Stop it at once! Mercy!"
He looked up through his bangs, drawing on her harder, eyes narrowed in fury as he cupped her swollen breast.
"You will not...best me...fuck you're amazing..."
Her eyes rolled into the back of her skull, standing on tip-toe, her body limned in a purple nimbus as she radiated dark magic. Knowing his soul was at peril the longer he remained, he plunged two fingers deep inside her, closing his eyes until her voice morphed into Jensen's, became his thighs pressed against Jared's ears. Tomorrow he would be back in hill country, far from the palace where his heart truly lay...
Her climax rushed toward her in a wave of hot noise, and something in the air broke, as delicate as a spiderweb. She fell atop the altar, and a great rumbling was heard within Fuck Mountain.
"My queen!" shouted the centurion, running to her aid. He raised his sword to kill Jared, when suddenly his eyes went blank and he fell over with a knife buried in his back.
Jared gaped. "Jensen?"
Jensen rushed into his arms. "There's no time," he whispered, "Take his horse and claim the throne for yourself!"
"No, wait for me here," he said, crushing Jensen in his cruel embrace, "For I would take you with me, and leave this accursed place behind us."
And with a blade in each hand and the reins between his teeth, Jared rode down the mob until none dare approach him. But he spied more men marching up the main path, and feeling the heat of the lava against his back, he flung Jensen over his saddle and galloped down Fuck Mountain, the queen's curses floating in the night air.
When they passed the city gate Jensen looked over his shoulder, fire flickering on the mountain as the sky darkened with great plumes of black smoke. "You have lost the kingdom."
Jared took his chin between thumb and forefinger. "No," he said, pressing his mouth to his, "You have gained a king."