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The Song of Steel

Book One - Chapter 28

By W.R. Logan


Copyright 2004 W.R. Logan

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Queen Jillian


THE LOOK BRIE GAVE JILLIAN as she entered the bedchamber

was enough to confirm the Scepter’s

words. The girl bounced to her feet with a horrified

expression on her repugnant face.

Twitching like a rat caught in a trap, Jillian

thought. Brie’s hands shook uncontrollably under

the queen’s gaze.

“I’m so glad you’re back, my queen,” Brie managed

as she clasped her fingers together to stop the


“Really?” the queen asked. No, I am not going to

make this as humane as killing a rat. You will suffer little


“Yes, my queen,” Brie confirmed.

Guilt was written all over the girl. Her eyes

couldn’t come close to meeting Jillian’s, and the

smell of fear permeated the room, overshadowing

Brie’s natural stench. Jillian didn’t need to question

the girl. The Scepter told her all she needed to know

about the betrayal. This little whore turned on her

for the sake of a man. A baker, no less.

After all your lessons, Jillian thought, you are still

just as stupid as the day I took you home from the docks.

“You don’t look very happy to see me,” the

queen objected.

“I was just so shaken,” Brie defended. Tears began

to stream down her cheeks.

“Are those for me, kitten?” Jillian asked. Brie

wiped the tears, but didn’t answer the question. “No

need to shed those for me.”

Jillian walked over and placed an arm around

the girl. Brie’s shivering increased at her touch. She

tightened her grip and forced the girl to walk with

her. The queen would savor the fear before the pain.

This was the way of revenge.

“Your brother,” the queen started, “does he still

work in the stables?”

“Yes,” Brie answered with some hesitation.

“You,” the queen commanded one of her servants,

“Go fetch Karel.” The servant hurried away.

The girl’s face went white. Her tears spewed

from her eyes. The queen knew Brie would be terrified

by the move. The possibilities of all the things

she could be planning had to be churning in Brie’s

head. It was revenge at its sweetest.

“I can’t have your brother slaving away in some

stable,” she soothed.

“He likes the stables, my queen.”

“He deserves more respect than that,” Jillian argued.

“After all, you were my right hand in all of

this. Where would I be without your help?”

“I’m just a slave, m’lady, nothing more.”

“Ah, but I reward loyalty where I find it.” Jillian

placed a finger under Brie’s chin. “Just like I punish


The dismay on the girl’s face made letting the

Scepter have his pleasure all worth it. Jillian kissed

her on her right cheek and felt the girl pull ever so

slightly away from her. This girl who had been her

concubine, her lover, for years found her repulsive.

A flash of anger ran through the queen.

“Wash her,” the queen commanded her dressers.

“The smell is atrocious.”

The dressers took the girl to the bath. Jillian sat

by the bed, basking in the sobs of her victim. Brie

had just begun to pay for her sins. Before Jillian was

done, the chattel would learn to fear her betters.

“What would you have her wear?” a dresser


“Leave her undressed,” the queen answered.

Brie was dried thoroughly and left standing

nude. Her hands were crossed in front of her bottom

half, nervously twittering. The slave found the

strength to stop her crying. This was a strength

Jillian promised would be short-lived.

The queen looked beyond the gangly girl to the

beauty of the chambers. Her bed had long oak bedposts

reaching almost to the ceiling. The bed was

zyder-made and complimented the fine tapestries

covering the walls. A marble fireplace made from

stone cut in the Eastern Empire warmed the room. A

sitting room connected to her bedchamber as well as

one whole room just to keep her clothes. All of this

was almost lost because she trusted a slave.

Her servant returned with Karel, who was lucky

enough to keep the good looks his sister lost. His

strawberry-blond hair was trimmed neatly on the

sides and a little longer on top. Light-blue eyes set in

a fine chiseled face. Looking at him made Jillian

wonder why she ever sent the boy to the stables. He

still had two or three years before he grew too old

for the queen’s taste.

“Karel,” the queen greeted.

“My queen,” Karel replied with a bow. “I am

sorry for my appearance.”

“We can take care of that,” Jillian replied, turning

to her dressers. “Clean him up.”

They did as they were told. The boy was undressed

and helped into a tub of water. His stable

clothes were thrown into a bag and hurried from the

room. Karel was lathered from head to toe and then

rinsed. During the whole procedure, the queen noticed

the boy didn’t look to his sister once.

Jillian sent for some clothing for the boy. When

the chattel returned with the traditional all-white

clothing of a slave, she scolded him soundly.

“This is not the proper attire for a freeman,” she

said. Jillian sent the eunuch out to get the desired


The servant returned with a suit of fine purple

silk and a couple of lesser outfits. Jillian cast the others

away and pulled out the purple silks. She inspected

them closely.

“Yes, these will be fine,” she said. “Hurry and

dress him.”

Karel was soon clothed. Jillian looked over her

prize. The boy could pass for a noble dressed this

way. She had some boots brought to finish the look

before she revealed her plan.

“Karel, today you are free,” Jillian told him. “I

will have one of my guards see you to the gate.”

“My queen,” Brie cried, “Dressed like that without

armed guards, the peasants will tear him to


Jillian smiled at her. The queen knew the girl’s

words to be true. With the poor starving in the

streets, it was not safe for anyone of noble birth to

travel the street. Karel wouldn’t make it a mile from

the castle before he was mobbed.

“You are quite right,” the queen conceded.

“Take him to the armory first and let him chose a

sword of his liking.”

“Thank you, my queen,” Karel said. Jillian heard

no gratitude in the eunuch’s voice. She knew he lost

all desire for freedom when the king had him castrated.

Her guard took Karel by the arm and led him

from the room. Jillian’s smile grew larger as she saw

the water pressing at the girl’s eyes.

“With a sword and those clothes, Karel won’t

make it two feet from the gate,” Brie said.

“Then we will be able to watch from my window,”

Jillian replied. “Maybe he will take down a

few of the beggars before they kill him.”

Jillian picked up one of the pastries by her bed.

She nibbled at its edge. Then she took a full bite.

“Mmm,” she announced, “this is the best pastry

I have ever had. Who made these?”

“Shan,” one of her dressers told her.

“Well, then I must reward him,” Jillian said.

“I’m in a giving mood today.”

The queen looked for the tears on Brie’s face and

was more than a little disappointed when she found

none. The little slut is stronger than I gave her credit for,

Jillian thought. “What do you think I should give

our good baker, Brie?” Jillian queried.

“I don’t know, my queen,” Brie answered.

“I hear he is unwed,” Jillian commented.

“Maybe a bride then. After all, he is a grotesque looking

thing, not much chance of him finding a

woman by himself. What do you think, Brie?”

“I wouldn’t know, m’lady.”

“For someone who spends her whole day in the

kitchens, you sure don’t know much about anything.

Perhaps you would like to be Shan’s new


Brie’s face lit up at the comment. Jillian saw the

faint glint of hope flare in her eyes and took great

pleasure in crushing it.

“Of course, I will offer him options,” the queen

continued. “I can’t have him thinking I pawned off a

mutt on him.” Jillian smiled her sweetest smile as

she turned to her concubine. “Tarra, go get Maya

and send for Shan.”

As Tarra left the room, Jillian took Brie by the

arm and led her to the wall in front of the door.

When Tarra and Maya returned, she placed one on

each side of Brietana. The queen smiled at her crea-

tion, two of her most beautiful female slaves cornering

her most hideous.

A few minutes later, Shan waddled into the

room. Jillian never really noticed how ugly the man

was until that moment. As tasty as the pastry was,

the sight of the hands that made it wrecked its appeal.

Jillian placed the treat back on the plate, intent

on tossing the bundle after the man left.

“Shan, so good of you to join us,” Jillian greeted.

“My queen, have I displeased you?”

Despite his looks, this man knew his place. He

bowed low keeping his eyes to the floor and waited

for her answer. Jillian looked at Brie one last time

before answering the baker. Brie still attempted to

cover her secrets with her hands.

How many times has this baker had you? Jillian

thought, and you still try to hide yourself from him. “I

am rewarding you for your service.”

“Rewarding, m’queen?”

“You sound as though you have never heard of

the word,” the queen laughed. “Before you stand

three girls. Pick any of the three to be your wife.”

Shan looked at the three nervously. Brie shot

him a furious glance when he gazed too long on

Tarra. The baker lowered his head, appearing to fear

the girl’s wrath.

“Oh, you have an interest in my Tarra,” Jillian

said after watching the spectacle. She knew she’d

better take control of the situation before her plan

crumbled. “Show him your wares, my dear.”

Tarra slid out of the loose white robe, dropping

it to the floor. Brie’s misshapen body appeared even

more warped beside the perfection of her concubine.

Jillian walked over and stroked Tarra’s nipples until

they hardened.

“She is an excellent choice,” Jillian told him.

“Come feel the silk of her skin.” Shan resisted her

call. Finally, the queen took his arm and pulled him

close to Tarra. As soon as his hands embraced the

curve of her breast, all Brie’s efforts were crushed.

The man left with Tarra and didn’t look back.

Tears struggled at the edges of Brie’s eyes, but

didn’t fall. Jillian was mildly impressed with the

slave’s resistance; however, she was not yet finished

with her punishment.

“The baker took my concubine,” Jillian said. “I

guess you will have to take her place till a new one

can be found.” She took a finger and pushed Brie’s

hands away from her body to expose her secrets.

“Please, wash her again,” Jillian commanded her

dressers, “and use rosewater this time.” She walked

toward her sitting room. As she heard the sounds of

soft sobbing coming from her victim, she turned and

added, “Oh, and move the tub to the window. I

wouldn’t want her to miss her brother’s departure.”





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