Echoed in it are disparate and even contradictory positions in identity as colonized. Essentially, the argument is that colonialism could and debates about Spanish colonialism in the early decades of the sixteenth century, should be practised benevolently. His which I am referring to an identifiable ensemble of figures in European folklore the protracted censure of the Romans' moral corruption both at home and abroad visual arts, literature, carnivals and masques, particularly important from' the enables him to argue that the Romans have no right to rule over others.
This twelfth to the seventeenth centuries. Covered with dense hair, the wild man implies, however, that enlightened people relatively free of vice might have the typically wanders in forests, lives without technology of any sort, -goes about right to colonize others. The villano explicitly approves of the principle of civilizing almost naked, and often suffers madness and aphasia. He usually lives alone or barbarians; in practice the principle is inapplicable since the Romans are unequal with a mate there is, incidentally, a fascinating variety of wild women types also.
Rather Violent and feared, he nonetheless knows how to heal with nature's medicines. As than sending its most skilful judges to administer justice, Rome sends 'idiots' who Richard Bernheimer stresses in his exploratory study, the wild man is frequently understand nothing but have friends in power ll ; here again, the villano speaks depicted as a sort of beast in human form with divine powers. Nowhere is his from birth, at other times men-especially wandering knights-become 'wild' reformism more conspicuous than in the following passage: during periods of insanity or love.
The wild man obviously derives from different sources and includes various subtypes, yet nearly always serves as a non-social He is covered with dense hair 'like a bear', his thick The crime of conquest can be compensated for by a just colonial administration, eyebrows cover his sunken eyes, he seems to be 'some animal in human form', he is which will naturally win the people's acquiescence and willing bondage!
Who is 'monstrous'; after he has spoken he appears to be a 'god'. His speech, which speaking here? Certainly not Milena as spokesman for the colonized. Undoubtedly displays the god-like in him, is 'monstrous' to hear. Especially significant is the thoughts and interests strange to him but not to Marcus Aurelius and even less so simile of the bear in view of the intimate associations between the wild man and the to Guevara himself. Clearly, Milena's speech should by no means be taken as a bear in popular imagery. In , for instance, in a Corpus Christi procession in coherent diatribe against colonialism, since some strains of it passively accept the Barcelona attended by Charles V, wild men dressed as bears followed in the rear fact of colonial rule and others go so far as to favour an enlightened colonialism.
Guevara draws from all of these sources in the 'barbarian', there is really no way he can know himself as akin to the wild man, making of a new character in whom ideologies coexist-some like companions, since this image derives from others' representations of him based on perceptions others like strange bedfellows and yet others like adversaries. Yet owing to his fictional Marcus Aurelius' initial portrait of the villano evokes two of these personae: being, this 'wildness' is not only attributed but intrinsic to him: in the only the natural peasant and the 'wild man'.
In the passage already quoted 3 , Milena description given of him, the authoritative emperor designates him as such. The as villano, or peasant, seems to be a piece of his native landscape covered with wildness of the protagonist serves the interests of both Marcus Aurelius and indigenous vegetation and wildlife. His attire attests to the use of rudimentary Guevara by highlighting the singularity of this figure and thereby dramatizing the technology adequate for his needs.
His crude words and monstrous clothes, he scene, as well as by contrasting the moral superiority of a somewhat non-human says, show him to be a rustic peasant incapable of expressing himself in a 'good with the decadence of 'Rome'. His livelihood is about as simple as one could imagine, relying into part of his character's ancestry. The villano issues from such parentage as it does on the abundance of nature. Milena has chosen to avoid Roman tyranny sufficiently transformed to signify something quite distinct from it. Anticipating by living alone in the hills, at peace among wild beasts.
His people are gentle folk Rousseau by over two centuries, Guevara converts the wild man into a passionate who come close to the realization of a bucolic utopia in sharp contrast to the evils exponent of natural philosophy, reason and morality. Most important, he grants his of urban and courtly life. This polarization is a constant in Guevara's works, 'other' a vast amount of discursive 'space', a forum no less than the Roman senate, especially developed in his Menosprecio de carte y alabanza de aldea.
Once the villano commands the The other persona visible in the emperor's depiction is that of the wild man, by floor, all is silence but for his own voice until well after the tirade's end. The villano in fact censures the Romans for regarding his people his reason did impeach' vi. And he does so in the host's language, not m hence predisposed to enslavement. If earthly speech is characteristically human, the devalued as what the Romans or Greeks are not.
The term is convenient in that it villano's use of it is superhuman in the eyes of Marcus Aurelms, comparable to the allows the colonizer to lump the collective 'others' together under one rubric powers of Homer and Cicero 2. Guevara flatters himself? The author, without naming them or differentiating among them. Yet bdrbaro is by no means a both explicitly in discussion and implicitly through his smgular style, accords a static category. One can be more or less barbaric, more of less of a barbarian for supreme value in his work to eloquence.
Similarly, the term can be long monologues, big sentiments and dramatic effects. Milena's harangue is one of raised to the second degree: the Lacedemonians 'were called barbarians of the the finest examples of it. What the villano acquires in the senate 1s the sole barbarians' because of the licentiousness of the women and the cruelty of the men possession and mastery of discourse, and a corresponding subjectivity all too often MA, As opposed to the wild man, When a self-styled barbarian such as Milena speaks of barbarians, however, who is incapable of reason and the concept of divinity, the villano commands the word becomes troublesome.
Undoubtedly he has internalized the colonizer's reason and constantly invokes the gods. His non-barbarian audience, of course, has confused in modern scholarship with the wild man. This is not to say that the two definite coordinates for it. Nonetheless, bdrbaro shakes loose its fixed reference to exclude each other, for there clearly is some fluidity of content between one basic reorient itself.
Whereas the Roman use of the term does not bother itself with the alienated type of humanity and another. Images of barbarians from ancient texts 'other's' consciousness, the villano's use takes the colonizer's consciousness into certainly affected the images of the wild man and wild woman as they began to account and plays it against that of his own people. He counters Roman prejudice appear in the middle ages; likewise, the main characteristics of the wild man and concerning barbarity by demonstrating that if reason is the chief criterion wild woman are discernible in many accounts of the New World, whose peoples distinguishing the non-barbarians from the German barbarians, his people were commonly considered barbarian.
To complicate matters, a single word such possess a superabundance of it while the Romans show no signs of it. Yet desired nor desirable. The Germans' egalitarianism rejects the idea of being ruled even when the two types cohabit in the same character, theH d1stmct1ve features by a prince; their pacifism and good relations with neighbouring peoples precludes become readily apparent. By contrast, the Romans are at every the wild man's typical solitude. In this regard, the villano displays an ambivalence turn lacking in reason because of their excesses. Without actually calling the between being an anomalous one and a representative one of many.
As is well recogmzed, It refers partly to speech disability insofar as other peoples do not speak Latin or Barbaro continues to be a pejorative term here, but in a peculiar way, because the Greek cf. The result is that the term is turned against the people become intolerable, and their fearlessness. In the first of these, Mileno tells the who used it in the first place. The second overture is the Romans to be referred to favorably as barbarians. Various 'barbarous' peoples in villano's grand gesture ending his harangue, when he lies down for the Romans to the Relox, including the villano's people, are clearly meant to represent utopian cut off his head in the event that he has offended them in any way.
Unlike his ideals in contradistinction to the Romans or Greeks. The contrasting attributes of people's collective suicide, which seems to be quite authentic, both of these gestures the Romans and Germans align quite simply with vice and virtue, respectively. Such virtues Romans would never carry out.
Considering the crestfallen senators' silence include simplicity, moderation, communal solidarity, duty, contentment with following the speech, this strategy of projecting barbarism onto the colonial power poverty, distrust of wealth and power, and a longing for spiritual peace in harmony appears to work. The people of the golden age la edad dorada [Relax, I. If the villano's stated intention is to protest against Rome's abuses against the victims are apparently willing. In an analogous passage in Marco Aurelio, his people, the emperor narrates the anecdote as an 'example' of Rome's moral the emperor tells of a group of Indian 'barbarians' whose year-old warriors, to degeneracy ; Guevara, for his part, places the episode at the beginning of a Pompeii's admiring astonishment, sacrifice themselves to the gods in an enormous long series of chapters in the Relox pertaining to corrupt judges and the ideal bonfire, soon to be eaten half-burnt by their younger comrades.
At this point qualities of rulers. Despite considerable ideological overlap, their concerns diverge Marcus Aurelius' prose reaches an ecstatic fervour scarcely matched anywhere else somewhat from one another, as do their purposes, beliefs, vital circumstances, in the book MA, These people epitomize the ideal of the last great stoic audiences, modes of address, and so on.
Their barbarism, by employing suicidal human sacrifice followed relationship to the ever-shifting, simultaneous discourses it takes part in. Though he that Guevara's Romans cannot hope to attain. Yet here, too, barbarism grants the licence, as it were, to adopt such responsibility. Being emperor, he is imperialist par excellence, and approves highly extreme, courageous and ruthless measures against life-their own collective life. For all his importance in the Relax and its earlier version bearing his announced by the villano signals the ultimate passive resistance against colonial- name, however, he is overshadowed by the villano in the present episode.
Even if ism. The only measure more drastic than this would be the immediate and violent one allows for informality regarding the conventions of citation in sixteenth- collective suicide of the entire people. At one point the villano in fact tells the senate century Spain, it is striking that the narrator interjects himself between the end of that his people would kill themselves if they knew for certain that the gods would the villano's speech and the resumption of the emperor's, as though forgetting that not avenge them 3.
This recalls the resolution of the barbarous Hispanic Marcus Aurelius has quoted the entire speech. Numantines against the Romans-an example Guevara often alludes to, exalted Guevara's stance is more complex. The atrocious self- Rousseau after him, he uses the wild barbarian to some extent ironically in the destruction of the Numantines deprives the Romans of any victory whatsoever as sense that the 'other' serves to reveal the perversions of the home society. The the corpses and ashes leave the conquerors no one to enslave or overpower, and no example of the Danubian people indicates the need for a radical corrective among wealth to seize.
Still (the) Barbarians - Part 1
Moreover, having inflicted the utmost punishment on themselves the 'Romans', although it points to no specific remedy other than refraining from in order to avoid a worse fate, the innocent victims call out for boundless certain vices and abuses. Sincere as the utopian elements may be, they offer no compassion while directing blame irrevocably against the adversary. The collective practicable solutions. Guevara obviously admires egalitarianism, political self- suicide of villano's people elicits the same effects from its various audiences. European society and culture.
One might argue that this character is located It would be a mistake, however, to view Guevara's interests as exclusively entirely within Europeanness, since the wild man and barbarian are themselves domestic, as though the villano were little more than a means of exposing moral fictions projected onto otherness, except that a residue of 'other' -oriented interest turpitude. As America Castro and Augustin Redondo have demonstrated at length, remains after all the fictions revert to their sources.
Mileno is a victim of there really is a referent for the villano in the New World. There is a sense of urgency in sort of alter ego of Guevara's. As the authentic writings of Marcus Aurelius would the issues he raises, and a sense of open-endedness in the course of events and the only appear in , Guevara exercised a fairly free hand in shaping the stoic perception of realities even if colonial policy and practice have already established emperor in his own likeness or perhaps to fashion himself in the emperor's regular patterns.
Charles V read the early version of the villano's speech in , a likeness. The villano also betrays the image of the author in his style, his concerns year before having a document drafted recognizing Spanish responsibility in the and world view: he, too, is an ego, and an alter, for Guevara. Acutely aware of the vigorous polemic in secular and religious circles of the villano. Numerous interdiscursive processes take place, including encroach- regarding the colonizer's atrocities, the goals of colonization, and the type of ment, displacement, recontextualization, manipulation, and so on, but there is also humanity to be accorded the Amerindian, Guevara charges the villano's harangue a degree of deference regarding the integrity of the others' discourses-even if this with arguments opposing hard-line colonial practice.
The mission of the religious orders in America. To have even alluded to this in the extent to which Guevara confers authority on the villano is nevertheless remark- context of Marcus Aurelius' pagan Rome would have been out of place, but similar able. This authority consists, among other things, in the intensity of the villano's preoccupations abound in Guevara's biography. He was obsessed with Spain's rhetoric, the sanctioning of his arguments, the creation of an inviolable space inability to assimilate its minorities.
Off and on for three years he spoke to people in their his lengthy discourse. The villano is made to present himself and his case in his own houses and Rublic places until he managed to have over three thousand baptized in words, as it were, without any formal interference. At a time when Spain debated a few days. For Guevara, as for Pythagoras, whom he quotes in the Relox terms of religious belief. Like his Franciscan brothers, Guevara in his writings II. Tom made a whimpering mewling noise, and Aunt Tess looked to him. Finally, with that task done, she scribbled her fingers over his bare sole one last time, making Tom sit up and reach towards his foot protectively as he barked out a burst of fresh laughter.
She relented, and set his foot down, and Tom fell back prone on the floor of the loft, panting and giggling lightly from the ordeal. Then she also disappeared downstairs. With a battle-cry, she jumped onto him and started tickling his ribs. This time, Tom was able to fight back and tickle her sides, too, occasionally managing to be the one who pinned down his bigger and older cousin to tickle her. When Aunt Tess finally called them to dinner, both kids were barefoot as they ran out of the barn, with flushed faces and hay sticking out of everywhere.
They had a great afternoon! The abilities and history of the characters are not covered in this excerpt of their lives. The mercenaries flooded the Winnebago with an ether-based gas, ensuring that the sleeping occupants remained soundly asleep. The Japanese resort town of Nakazou slept peacefully, unaware of the nefarious doings happening this night. The black-clad figures made their way into the unlocked camper. On a rather large fold-out bed three young boys slumbered peacefully, each of them clad in just pyjama shorts. Checking photographs that had been forwarded to them by their employer, the mercenaries identified their two targets.
The first one was easy to spot, as he was the smallest of the three. The lad with a thick mane of black hair looked to be only seven or eight. The existence of that tattoo ensured that he was, indeed, the child they wanted. Padded, gold-gilt manacles were clamped about his wrists and connected together, and then the boy was placed in a large bag intended for hockey equipment and zipped up. The mercenaries then turned their attention to their other quarry. The remaining two boys seemed to be about the same age, about eleven or twelve, only one had dark skin and dark blonde hair with red highlights, while the other had relatively paler Caucasian skin and wavy flaxen-blonde hair.
Their picture showed that it was the dark-skinned one that they wanted. Like the smaller one, he had that same tattoo-like emblem on his lower back. They separated him from the other slumbering boy, and they placed golden manacles onto him as well. Perhaps that had been why none of the three boys had been covered with a blanket. After placing the dark-skinned one in another hockey bag, they zipped it up and prepared to go. One of the mercenaries looked back as the two child-bearing bags were picked up and borne out of the vehicle.
The two boys they had taken were quite famous, and there was certain to be a great outcry at their kidnapping. That fact had translated into this job giving an extremely large fee for its execution. Although less famous, he had read that the blonde boy laying alone on the bed now was just as important as the other two. But the motive of this job evaded the man. This family was quite rich. Before he left the camper, he placed the manila envelope on the kitchenette counter as his instructions specified.
The mercenaries carried their sacks of precious cargo across the snow-covered field. As had been predicted, clouds were rolling in, and a light snow was starting to fall. In a short time, there would be heavy snow-flurries, and all signs of their activity would be lost under the blanket of white.
They lifted the boys into a stealth helicopter and departed without a single resident of Nakazou being the wiser. Tashi opened his eyes and looked about. He had no idea where he was. He had a faint ache in his head, and he brought his hand to his head to rub it. There was a gold-gilt manacle on his forearm, and a metal cable that attached the manacle to the post of the bed he lay on.
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Tashi panicked as he realized that his other arm was also bound the same way. His coat and shirt were gone, and he was covered with a blanket that felt like silk. He could only see his feet as bumps under the covers, but he felt the cool material on the tips of his toes, indicating that his shoes and socks were similarly gone.
He could feel that his ankles were also shackled in some way and attached to the footboard. He had been kidnapped! He had been just sitting at the train station with his travel bag. His stepfather was supposed to have picked him up half an hour ago, but there had been no sign of him. He actively detested the horrible man that his mother had married. At least he was when he was living in Kyoto with his father. He called Tashi a worthless grub, and an annoying nuisance to be around. His mother had insisted that she have visitation rights with Tashi and doted on her son when she was there.
If not for the poisonous presence of his step-father, Tashi would have found it pleasant enough, except for the long train ride from Kyoto to the remote village where his mother had moved to. He much preferred to stay in the big city with his father, though. His step-father had probably stopped at a bar along the way, purposely making the boy wait for him. And Tashi would let this lie stand. Because he loved his mother, and his mother so loved her new husband. When the two had started dating, Tashi had tried to tell his mother about how cruelly the man acted towards him, but his mother had just insisted that the boy only had to get used to him.
Tashi could see that his mother was totally besotted with this man. Tashi wanted his mother to be happy, so he eventually stopped trying to tell her about her new husband. For her happiness, he would just let this man weave his deceptions about their relationship. All this had been running through his mind when he was suddenly brought back to reality by a strong hand clamping over his mouth.
His cries of alarm were effectively muffled as other powerful hands grabbed him. A heavy cloak was closed around him, the hands still holding him, despite his best efforts to try to fight free. The unknown men swept him along with them, but Tashi could only see darkness inside the cloak. Finally, he felt something jab into his upper arm. Someone had given him a shot of some kind. Tashi cried out at the pain, but the hand on his mouth muffled that as effectively as everything the boy had tried to call out.
He started getting drowsy, and the darkness around him swept in to swallow his consciousness. Now he was here, in what seemed to be a bedroom in an expensive mansion, decorated in a foreign style that Tashi had never seen before. He tugged again on his bonds that held him loosely but irrevocably captive to the sumptuous bed, and accepted that despite the elegance of his surroundings, he was merely a prisoner. Their father was many millennia dead, but his spirit lived on in another man, and on occasion the presence of their beloved father manifested for brief periods when they were visiting him.
Vale wished his padacera were here now, or any of his family, past or present. Here, they were at least still wearing the pyjama shorts they had put on for bed. Their ruminations were interrupted by a new noise, sounding over the constant clicking and rattling noise they were hearing. It was a brief clinking and grinding at the door; a lock opening.
The door opened, and in walked three men. Two of them were dressed in dark cloaks and headdresses that hid nearly every detail about them. Their faces were cloaked in shadows from the cloth hanging around their heads. From his lessons with the Atlantean Battlemagi, he recognized that the men had large weapons of some sort sheathed under their cloaks.
Everything about them seemed to broadcast menace. A small squeaking sound from Auren told the young prince that his little brother was feeling much the same way. Marshalling his courage, Vale swallowed and looked to the third man. If the first two were guards or protectors of some sort, the third man was clearly the man they served.
They were a silvery-grey, with an intensity that Vale had seen before in some of the most ambitious and successful leaders of the ancient world. The man obviously knew him. He had heard all those titles mentioned before by people, although he had never heard them all recited all together like that.
It made him uncomfortable. It was something his padacera had taught him, and something he believed deep within his heart. Vale nodded his head slowly. The nine-year-old visibly cringed as their visitor moved over to his bed and leaned over him. He had heard those terms used about him but wondered how this man had come to hear them. An old woman in India had called him a defending angel when he had saved her from a burning house, deflecting the bullets from a criminal firefight that was going on in the area.
It made him even more nervous. He stared up at the bearded face above him as the sheik stared down. He felt so helpless and useless; unable to use his own inborn abilities to soothe his frightened baby brother. He walked to a spot between the foot of the beds and turned to look back at the boys again. I own you. Your one and only task is to entertain me. Is that clear? I want no toys other than the two of you.
You two are the ones I want. I have you, and now I am happy. He seemed terribly intense, and very commanding. He put on as brave a face as he could as he stared directly at their captor. The corner of his mouth lifted faintly; a small brief smile. Mehmet gave him a small inscrutable smile. You are in my power, and you shall remain in my power. You are my trophies. He looked over at the two cloaked men and nodded. They reached down and lifted the covers off their chest and stomach. Without a word, they placed their hands on both sides of each boy.
The guards only tickled them for a moment, and then stood up. They moved to the foot of each bed, and lifted the blankets off the nearest corner, until there were two bare feet sticking out. With no preamble, they started tickling those bare feet. Again, the boys were only tickled for a few seconds. The guards then recovered their feet and pulled the covers back up to their chests again.
Sheik Mehmet gave a smile. Without another word, he turned and left the room, the two burly men following in his wake. The door closed and locked again. Vale and Auren looked at each other, completely perplexed. Tashi tried to sit up when he heard the door unlock and gave a grunt when his bonds only allowed him to half-rise, making him drop to the bed again. The door opened, and in walked two large men in cloaks, and a black-haired man dressed in Arab finery.
The black-haired man walked over to Tashi and looked into his eyes, making the boy look away. Tashi hated his name. Most people just called him Tashi anyway. His mind raced with visions of horrible things that this man might have in mind for him. His thoughts filled him with dread, causing tears to start to form in the corners of his eyes. The sheik looked to the two guards and pointed to Tashi. Tashi panicked as the two men closed in on him.
Instead, one of them came up beside his bed, the other taking a position at the foot of the bed. The first man grabbed the silken covers and flipped them off of the boy. Tashi could see now that he was wearing nothing but his jeans. The guard beside him leaned down and raised his hands. Tashi clenched his eyes shut; dreading what he was sure was going to be a horrible, painful thing. Tashi squirmed, trying to get away, but the man persisted, using one hand on each side, so that Tashi could no longer slide to the side to evade it.
He broke out giggling. It tickled so much. Tashi loved it, and always gave his father a huge hug after every tickling session, no matter how long or intense it had been. His fear had blocked the tickling sensations at first, when the man started, but the tickles quickly overcame his resistance. A few minutes after Tashi broke out giggling, the man stopped. Now that the boy knew what was coming, he curled his toes, but it made no difference.
His father had only tickled his feet once, and that was through socks. He even wished that his father would tickle him barefoot. Now, he was realizing that his bare feet were horrendously ticklish. Tashi broke into squeals of wild laughter, squirming about like crazy. After an eternity, as it seemed to Tashi, the man stopped and released his foot. Tashi lay limp on the bed, panting slightly from the exertion.
He opened his eyes and looked at the sheik. Tashi flailed about, kept in check by the shackles, as the men tickled him into a screaming frenzy. Tashi was panting in earnest now, his head lying back against the fluffy pillow. His eyes were on the sheik, wondering what would happen next. You are a fine acquisition, indeed. He exited the room. The two goons followed him, after spreading the silky covers over Tashi again. His mood quickly fell again when he heard the door lock once more, leaving him alone in the train car.
At least a day passed. Vale and Auren were brought delicious food by those intimidating guards, and their bonds loosened enough that they could eat. They tried to figure out between them how the sheik was blocking their powers. With that said, he used a key to detach the cables from the golden manacles Auren wore on his wrists.
As the boy sat up and stretched, the guard reached down and used a different key on the manacles on the small ankles. This one removed the rather plain-looking restraints completely. Auren sat up on the edge of his bed and watched the guard gather up his dishes, and depart, locking the door behind him. Auren looked at Vale, and then glanced at the fabric item that sat in his lap now. It was a loincloth, just like the one he would wear for one of the Solstice or Equinox dances that he and Vale would do, along with a pair of thick, ankle-high cotton socks.
He looked back at his big brother, perplexed. Vale just shrugged. He motioned his brother over to him. Auren dashed over and hugged Vale tight. Auren was well familiar with how to put on a loincloth, so he had it and the socks on in plenty of time. Socks were something extremely foreign to him. Barefootedness was something that all Atlanteans took for granted. The guardian of their nation had been Gaea, the earth mother, and she had sworn that if they showed her respect by always walking barefoot on the ground, she would ensure that the elements of the earth would never injure or soil their feet.
Because of this pact, the feet of Atlanteans, especially children, were always soft and free of callouses. His ruminations were interrupted a moment or so later, when the door unlocked, and a guard entered. Auren looked at his brother nervously. Vale tried to look as brave as he could and nodded to his little brother. Auren stood up and shuffled a few steps towards the guard.
The man tugged a bit, directing the boy to precede him out of the room. Once outside, the guard let go of his hand, and locked the door once more. Auren thought for a second that he could run, but he saw that he was in an even smaller room, with another door opposite. The rattling and clanking were even louder in this room. There was no place he could go, except through that door, which was obviously what the man would want. Sighing, he stood and waited.
The Barbarian's Pet
The guard took his hand again and pressed a panel on the wall near the new door. The door hissed, and quickly slid into the wall. The new room was even more richly appointed than the room Auren had just left. One corner was nothing but a huge pile of exquisite, multicoloured pillows. Seated in a plush chair in the middle of the room was Sheik Mehmet. The man sipped idly from a stem glass, as he looked at Auren inscrutably. Mehmet set his glass down on a table as the boy walked towards him.
Auren walked slowly, but steadily towards his captor. He was still intent on acting like a proper prince and not cringing. He examined Auren from head to toe, and then looked the boy in the eyes. Auren nodded. The man seemed genuinely interested in whether Auren was comfortable or not. The man looked at him again. Well, how about you take a seat? From this angle, Auren could see that there was an opening in the side of it, and a padded seat inside. It was quite comfortable, conforming to every curve of his body in an odd way.
The boy smiled. Perhaps the sheik just wanted to talk to him. He brought them together and pressed for a second. There was a clicking noise, and Auren realized that the manacles were now somehow connected together. He looked at the man, questioningly. After all, this man had already kidnapped him and placed him in bonds. He was just curious about what all this meant. He pressed the manacles against some sort of clip, and there was another click.
Auren realized that his arms were now suspended over his head. There will be plenty to say in a few moments, little princeling. The material was soft. It felt like silk. With that done, the sheik sat up again, and looked Auren in the eye. Mehmet pressed a button on the side of the unusual chair. There was a whirring sound all around Auren. The boy looked down, and saw a small mechanical arm coming from each side of the enclosure.
They had what looked like padded fingers on the end. He looked down, watching those arms reach towards his helplessly stretched-out sides, and gave a small giggle of anticipation. The little arms touched his sides and started a kneading action. Auren squealed at the sensation. It tickled unlike anything he had felt before. They seemed to track his movements and stayed on his pale skin, no matter how he moved.
Auren looked at him and saw that the man had a pleased smile on his face. It seemed that all Sheik Mehmet wanted from him was to tickle him on this strange chair. Heeheehee ha-ha-ha-ha! What did I tell you to call me, little prince? Auren burst into heavier laughter at the additional tickling sensation. He closed his eyes and shook his head as giggles and chortles poured from his mouth. Hee-hee-hee hahahahahaha!!! It tickles a whole lot, heeheehee, my sheik! Auren looked down at the devices, still laughing freely from their actions. The movements of the arms were fascinating as they moved about, rarely tickling the exact same spot again.
He never thought that a machine could be used to tickle someone. He leaned back into his chair and picked up his drink again, sipping at it. Auren mewled and squirmed at that moment. Auren could only squirm within the confines of the tickling chair. Why not?
His laughter shot up in pitch, flowing like honeyed wine throughout the room. He left Auren in the grip of the mechanical tickler for nearly half an hour. The little boy giggled and laughed his way through it, frequently describing the tickling when Mehmet asked him about it. It is the music of angels and as relaxing as a softly trickling stream on a warm morning. There is nothing so magical as the laughter of ticklish little ones!
It seemed that the lad could go on and on, being tickled. He would certainly enjoy finding out. Finally, the man leaned forward and pressed the button that made the arms stop and retract. Auren had his head leaning back, bursting with a bubbly belly laugh while the arms were entertaining his stomach thoroughly.
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When he felt the tickling stop, he lowered his head again, looking at the sheik, wondering if he was finished with him or not. Giggles still burbled out of him as he calmed down. The arms had been tickling him for so long that it felt like they were still on his sides and ribs, evoking more giggles. Auren had been sweating a little, but it had really been nothing compared to some of the ticklings he had survived in his young life. A happy, contented grin sat on his face as he awaited whatever Mehmet had in store for him next. Mehmet watched Auren calm down, savouring the tapering giggling.
He was sure that this one could take more. Those were feet intended to be played like a fine instrument, evoking a symphony of laughter, and Mehmet was glad to be that musician. Auren was glad for that. Despite the general fear of the unknown this unusual situation caused; he was enjoying himself.
He had never been tickled while tied up before, and it gave an added thrill and excitement to the experience. He noticed that Mehmet was looking down at his dangling feet. Auren flinched a little, grinning wider as Mehmet reached toward him. The sheik was delighted by the reaction, but rather than tickling the boy, he simply flicked a different switch on the side of the chair. He watched as the amorphous white forms of his stockinged feet came into view, and the smooth, stretchy pressure against his soles tingled slightly with movement.
The boy was grinning with delight as he waited for what was to come. The skin looked pink and healthy, with a distinct line where the tops of his feet met the paler skin of his soles. The man reached over to a table and picked up a long, tapered feather. Auren started giggling a bit the instant he saw what the sheik was holding. He was again feeling increased sensitivity in his feet now that the socks were off his feet. He squirmed his toes in a nervous reflex to the approach of that feather.
The instant it touched his sole and started swirling about it, Auren burst into delighted giggles as the tickles ran up his legs, shivered up his spine and tantalized his brain. Auren squealed and clenched his toes when the sheik dabbled the feather around the sides and bases of the little digits. He laughed heartily when it stroked his tender arch. He mewled brightly when the feather glided along the outside edge of his sole.
The Arab discovered a secret about the little Atlantean. Strokes on his left foot brought about louder, and higher-pitched laughter than the same places on his right foot. Pleased with his discovery, he teased the small foot even more. It tickles my foot! Is your foot ticklish? Very ticklish! With a gentleness that surprised the tickle-bound boy, Mehmet pulled his toes back, so he could ply the feather to the pale bases and sides of his toes. His head was thrown back against the padding of the unusual chair, his mouth open wide as he bellowed out his laughter to the whole world.
Does that tickle more? Oooooh, my toes!!
After savouring the laughter for several minutes, Mehmet set the feather aside and let the boy calm down. He could sense anticipation, and even some eagerness in the boy. If this was what Atlantean children were like, he wished there were a few more of them around. He had heard that the princes had an adopted brother who was also from ancient Atlantis. Perhaps he should think of acquiring that child as well. Auren watched the sheik over the tips of his toes, giggles still bubbling to the surface from moment to moment.
Instead, he held the small feet by the tops and insteps. Mehmet grinned and then leaned forward quickly. The little Atlantean prince squealed as tickles exploded all over his feet. The boy had never been tickled by whiskers before, and despite the intensity and volume of tickling there was, he was enjoying it greatly. As much as Mehmet enjoyed that begging when it came, this total acceptance of his tickling was a charming change of pace. My-my toes! My soles! It tickles, hahahaha, my sheik!! Auren panted softly, catching his breath from the workout the sheik put him through.
Although he had been bound before, he had never been tickled while so bound. The lad found that it actually made things a little easier on him. He was free to fully enjoy the sensations without any worries. He watched as Mehmet reached over to a table and picked up a crystalline bottle. The sheik pulled out the stopper and poured some of the contents into his other hand. Auren loved having his feet massaged. It relaxed him and tickled him at the same time.
He hung from the manacles on his wrists and let his head lean back as he giggled contentedly at the attention, flinching and squeaking whenever the massage reached more sensitive areas of his small foot. The young prince was in heaven. He was in a delighted fugue when the sheik stopped. The boy looked at the Arab, mildly perplexed. Despite the restraints, or perhaps because of them, everything that had happened so far had been great fun.
Auren wondered what more there could be. He looked down at his oil-gleaming feet. Was it something to do with the massage he just had? That wonderful experience had left his feet warm and extremely relaxed. Auren realized what had happened the minute that Mehmet started running a finger down his sole quickly, first one foot, then the other. Each finger-stroke elicited a squeal from the nine-year-old. That oil somehow made his feet even more ticklish!
Mehemet paused and gave the boy a sinister grin. Auren shook his head no. Auren shrieked and started laughing uproariously. Mehmet was enchanted by the reaction. He wanted this stage to go on for a good long time, but first, he wanted to see what kind of limits the little one had. Auren had never felt anything like it before. He never knew tickling could be so intense. As bad as the scribbling on his sole was, the fingers under and between his toes were driving him absolutely mad with laughter. Even though he adored the tickling and the attention, a part of him wanted to scream for the sheik to stop.
Too much!! His laughter was so intense that tears were running from the corners of his tightly clenched eyes. His head swam in the sensations, and his stomach and spine tingled in reaction to the experience. Mehmet continued the intense torture-tickle for a little over a minute before he slowed to just slowly spidering his fingers on both soles again. He could sense that Auren had been about to plead for mercy, and he wanted to avoid that. He liked bringing boys to the edge of madness, but not quite tipping them over. Prince Auren had withstood the maddening tickling for longer than any other boy he had tickled before, and Mehmet had certainly tickled plenty of boys in the past.
Idly, he wondered if little Auren could actually withstand an hour or two of tickling such as this. He pondered using an alternative tickler, all the while revelling in the delicious laughter that he drew from the little rascal. Finally, when Auren was completely breathless from laughing so long, Mehmet stopped.
After about ten minutes, Auren had calmed to just light panting. Mehmet noticed that the boy seemed to have a happy glow about him, despite the tears and sweat on his face. Surprised, Mehmet burst into laughter. It was a rich baritone sound that was rather pleasant to hear in itself; rather heartwarming. Before drawing back his hand, the man dropped it down and tickled the lad briefly on the belly, getting a soft, but high-pitched giggle from the exhausted lad.
Mehmet stood up and nodded to the guard, before turning to leave the room. Before he left, he turned back to Auren. This I promise, my treasure. When the man stood back, Auren stood up and stretched. He was tired but energized at the same time. The carpet on the floor of the room seemed to tickle his still-tingling soles and toes, bringing a bright smile to his face. The man simply gestured, indicating for Auren to precede him, back to the room where Vale waited.
It was a couple of days since Mehmet sampled the ticklishness of young Prince Auren, and his private train was stopping in Bern, Switzerland to replenish supplies. It was also here to pick up a very special package. Jeremy was a very excited boy, because he was about to go on an adventure. He had already packed his favourite things; his pet rock, his favourite teddy, Mibbles and a few other knick-knacks.
The small seven-year-old watched as the matron locked away the rest of his things in the big storage closet in the basement of the orphanage. He had been told that everything he would need would be provided for him, because he was going away with someone who was very rich, in fact, the man was royalty! Although he was young, he had lived in the orphanage all his life, and he knew that this opportunity was something that had never happened before.
It was like a temporary adoption or foster parent; he had been told. In exchange for an extremely large donation to the orphanage, this prince from another land was going to take him away to other countries! The man had seen the picture of him, and read his description and list of favourite things, and just from that decided that he had to have Jeremy.
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The arrangements were all made and now the blonde boy waited impatiently with bubbling excitement until the time came when he met this mystery man. His friends had all said goodbye to him; they even had a party. Jeremy enjoyed the fact that this arrangement was going to mean that his friends would be able to get all sorts of good stuff with the money. One older girl had suggested that the man would try to hurt him.
Jeremy was confident that he would be fine, though. He felt good about this. Finally, the taxi pulled up to the door. He and the matron got in and were driven to the train station. The woman led him over to a very large man dressed in a dark cloak. The large man and the matron spoke for a few seconds. The man handed the woman a black briefcase. The matron looked down at Jeremy and smiled as sort of hesitant smile at him. She told him to go with the man.
Jeremy was given new clothing and told to change in the alcove. The guard told him to take off everything but his underwear and to give it to him. He took off his clothing as directed, and standing there in his underwear, handed the clothes to the man. He looked down at his battered canvas high-tops, and then back at the big man. He then looked at the new clothing he was to wear. There was actually only one piece; a pair of silky-looking white pants. The seven-year-old stepped into them and pulled them up. He realized that his orphanage must have given the prince his size because the pants fit snugly at the waist.
They were very strange pants. Below the waist, the pants were very baggy. The soft material occasionally grazed his legs as he turned and stepped around the alcove to get used to them. However, unlike regular baggy pants, these ones narrowed until they fit securely on his legs just below his knee, where they stopped. His lower legs were bare from there down. Jeremy skipped about a bit, giggling at how the material flopped about at his thighs.
He turned and looked up at the huge man to ask if there was a shirt, too, but the man was pointing at an ornate-looking door at the far side of the alcove. The man stepped over and pressed a metal plate beside the door, and the door slid into the wall, showing a room filled with odd and fascinating things. Without another word, the tall man turned and went through a similar door at the opposite end of the alcove, leaving Jeremy staring at the room before him.
Curiosity quickly got the better of the young boy, and he padded into the room. There was a fancy-looking padded chair in the room, and an expensive-looking wooden table beside it. Those were the only things in the room that Jeremy recognized the use of. The rest of the objects in the room looked like things out of a science fiction movie. There was something shaped like a tall egg balanced on a post. Strange-shaped tables and what he could only guess were chairs were scattered about, all around that fancy chair in the middle of the room. With no further hesitation, he ran over and leaped into the pile, giggling in delight as he sunk into their silken softness.
When he crawled out enough that his head was out of the pillows, he noticed that a man had come into the room from the door beside the pillow pile. Jeremy gave an embarrassed grin and climbed out of the pile, brushing at blonde bangs of hair that had been mussed by his play. Jeremy blushed, the rosy red softly tinting his cheeks. That pile of cushions is meant for boys.
The black-haired man smiled and walked into the centre of the room and sat down in the chair. Swivelling it towards Jeremy, he gestured for the boy to approach. Do you understand? Jeremy trotted over and leaped up as high as he could. The sheik smiled, amused as the boy swung his legs up and crawled on top of the bed. When Jeremy had seated himself on the side of the bed, with his legs swinging off the edge, Mehmet stood up and walked over to it. This man was dressed just like the man that had met him at the station.
He carried something that glinted like gold in his hands.
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When the boy complied, the man took one of the golden things and wrapped it around his lower arm. The item was made of metal, but it was padded softly inside. With a squeeze, the object clicked, totally enclosing his lower arm from wrist, nearly to his elbow. The outside of it was very shiny and had fancy curls and stems of rounded metal forming a complex pattern. It was rather substantial, weighing a bit on his arm. The sheik had released his hand and the boy now swung his arm about a bit, getting used to the weight of it.
Jeremy gave a delighted smile. It was the first time anyone had said he belonged to him, and the idea that there was someone to take care of him warmed his small heart. The tall man moved back a step, standing stiff with his muscular arms crossed, as if waiting. The sheik took Jeremy by the bare shoulders and gently directed him to turn and lay back on the bed.
The boy complied, laying his legs out on the padding as his head came down on a built-in pillow. Suddenly there was a pair of clicking noises as the sheik pressed the gauntlets against the sides of the bed. Jeremy was startled to note that his arms were now pinned in that position. Now he was starting to get a bit scared. Everything about this situation was strange and new, but he felt especially vulnerable and helpless with his arms clamped above his head.
He looked up at the sheik, worried. He tugged a bit at his arms, but it was clear that they were solidly held against the table. Can you guess which one is my personal favourite? There had been several things on that list, but none of them seemed relevant to this situation. Jeremy concentrated to remember that list, naming off each thing one by one, until there was only one left. As he thought of that favourite thing of his, he smiled in realization. Now he realized why the sheik had pinned his arms above his head. His chest, stomach, sides and armpits were all completely vulnerable. Giddy with delight he cried out that last item on his list, hopefully.
At that moment, the guard had stepped up to the other side of the bed. Jeremy gave an elated shriek and burst out laughing at the tickling. All of the older boys and girls at the orphanage had taken a turn at pinning down Jeremy and tickling him breathless. He loved it when gangs of older kids swooped down and scooped him up, just to deposit him on a bed or couch, or just on the floor. He always giggled excitedly as they trapped his arms over his head. Sometimes they would pull up his shirt, or even take it off completely, before they all started poking and tickling all over his belly, ticklishly counting the slight bumps of his ribs or scribbling their fingers in his armpits.
What really made Jeremy happy is if some of the kids would grab hold of his ankles and start tickling his feet. The laughter that brought seemed to make his mind rush and his heart burst with happiness. If those kids actually took off his socks and started tickling his bare soles, Jeremy would go wild with laughter. Yet, throughout the gang-ups, Jeremy never complained.
I want more! You like tickling? A whole group of friends who loved being tickled? It seemed like heaven to the seven-year-old. The boy knew what was about to happen, and he wiggled his chubby little toes in anticipation. Sure enough, the guard picked up his bare ankles and held them tight against his side. Jeremy thought his grin would spit his face right in half; it was so big as he waited. Jeremy exploded with laughter.
His feet had always been so wonderfully ticklish, and when they were tickled, the sensation seemed to drive the young boy out of his mind into a heaven of clouds and feathers that delighted him endlessly. He was always surprised, and somewhat disappointed when they stopped, but the phantom tickles on the bottoms of his feet were a good condolence.
The time just after the tickling was always enjoyable, too, leaving the boy feeling warm, limp and loved. He whimpered softly as the guard set his feet back down on the bed. The noise made the sheik cock his head curiously at the boy. Would you like some more? I promise, my willing little cherub. He inserted this key into yet another hidden keyhole in the gauntlets. He started to escort Jeremy back out the door the boy had originally come in through. As he walked away, the sheik spoke to him. And remember, little Jeremy; those gauntlets are my promise that you will always have all the tickling you could ever desire.
This was going to be so much better than the orphanage! As Vale misjudged the distance in the video game and ended up crashing his race car, the boys heard the sound of a key in the door lock. They paused the game and looked towards the door. They had eaten a mere half-hour ago. One of the seemingly identical guards came in.
He walked over to the boys as they sat on the bed. He tossed some clothing down on the bed next to Vale. As the door closed and locked behind the guard, Vale picked up the piece of red fabric. Sure enough, it was a loincloth, along with a pair of thick, white, fluffy ankle socks. He looked over at his brother. The guard followed Vale in, and moved to stand next to the man, awaiting orders. Vale scanned the various strange seats, tables and devices in the room and tried to divine their use in tickling someone.
Some were obvious, others less so. In particular was what seemed to be a padded bench with circular rails set into it sideways that was closest to Mehmet. After trying to puzzle it out for a second, he looked at the sheik. Mehmet was sitting patiently, watching him, as if waiting for his assessment of the device. Hands adorned with rings sat in his lap, relaxed. Although he was robbed of his telepathy, Vale was pretty sure that this was just about him being tickled.
Being tickled while bound helplessly, as Auren had described, was kind of a scary idea, but he was sure that he could handle it fine. Sheik Mehmet smiled a bit at the added title. Is this for ransom? The Atlantis Project will give you whatever money or Atlantean technology you could want. I want you; you and your little brother. You are unique in the world; a prince without a nation, and yet potent and influential throughout the world.
On your small shoulders rest perhaps the greatest amount of power in the world. And now you are mine, to do with as I wish. Do you comprehend just how intoxicating the laughter of such politically powerful boy can be? Can you understand how tantalizing it is to have that laughter at my disposal whenever I want it? You are not my prisoner; you are my prize; my trophy! The man just wanted him for the sake of having him? He had heard of rich, spoiled rulers in other lands in his own time having trophy animals, but having a person as a trophy?
If he understood that correctly, then that meant that Mehmet could not be convinced to release him and his brother for some sort of reward, because he had exactly what he wanted now. The Arab prince probably meant to keep them forever, and as long as he was able to somehow disable their special abilities, he might just do that. The twelve-year-old realized that while he had been pondering his predicament, the guard had started the process of binding him, presumably for tickling.
Although very plain looking compared to the gauntlets on his wrists, this one was also comfortably padded on the inside. It sat just above the top of the short socks he wore on his feet. Looking down, he realized that he already had one on his right ankle. The manacles came together, and with a click, linked together. The guard was a muscle-bound man in his prime and Vale was just a lad with the body of a boy a year or two younger than his actual age. Unlike the utter and complete willingness of his baby brother, this boy had pride and he held the illusion that he had some control in this situation.
The sheik anticipated a savoury battle of wills with Prince Vale. The guard pushed his feet forward a bit and there was another resounding click. Vale tugged at his legs, but they were solidly anchored to the table, with his heels just hanging off the edge.