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Author's note: Picture, courtesy of `PARADISE DOLLS .COM
* BETH *
Flora (Florence) was of the Gainford MacDonalds. The money MacDonalds. Originally descended from Kings of Scotland. Now living in England with summer estates in the olde country. Cattle, shipping, heavily invested in this new fangled thing called rail.
If asked, and of course no one would be so obtuse as to mention the subject, Gainford would deny that he had a daughter.
Flora had soon learned not to mention her past. Not in the company she kept. She was not stupid, actually she was quite bright. Everyone makes mistakes. Flora's big mistake was frolicking with the stable hand in the hay loft, and getting caught. In more than one sense of the word.
The baby boy, of course, was dropped at an orphanage. Flora flounced out of the house in search of her child but had no idea how one found an orphanage let alone the right one.
She did however bump into her friend from the stable who of course had been let go from his employment. He, however, like herself, had been raised in a protective setting, had no idea how to exist on the street. It wasn't long before a more street wise hooligan replaced him as Flora's man of the hour.
For nearly two years Flora worked the streets and the shops. Guided by her mentor she became quite adept at picking pockets and shop lifting. However even the best become overconfident and sooner or later they get caught with their hand in the cookie jar.
In merry olde England the magistrates were not all that merry and Flora was found guilty of attempting to pilfer a half a bolt of gabardine from a haberdashers.
Before sentencing the filthy little bundle of rags to the gallows, for shop lifting was a hanging offense, the magistrate looked at his list and saw that a ship was leaving for the Americas within three days.
The magistrate felt that the crown could afford to feed the young trollop for two days and offered her a choice of, the gallows, or the galleon. His own private joke.
He was pleased when she chose the latter of the two options especially since he knew the captain of the ship would pay him coin for a warm body that could be sold into servitude in the colonies.
The captain of the ship was tired of his cabin boy and gladly paid the magistrate the few shillings extra that was asked for the half dozen head of human livestock that would otherwise grace the scaffold.
The stable boy, a certain master Joseph Bainbridge, of no great parentage, had never gotten over his first love. Though he had found it wiser to keep his distance from Flora, and her new mate, he did keep in touch with her whereabouts.
Learning of Flora's future he felt that he should accompany her and to this end set out to gain some supplies for the voyage. Normally just a petty thief he now turned to hard crime and at the point of a knife, within two evenings, collected several gentleman's purses and a sizable quantity of coin.
Not worried about leaving a trail he openly spent some of the spoils and with his purchases slipped aboard the busy ship the night before it sailed.
Totally new to the sea he was, surprisingly, able to find a hiding spot.
Needing only to venture forth for water, and bodily functions, as he had brought sufficient food for two people, he was able to stay undetected, for the entire voyage. However he was not able to see, let alone talk to, his beloved Flora. There were times when he wondered if perhaps he had gotten on the wrong ship.
Upon reaching the Americas, and the city of Charleston, South Carolina, Joseph slipped ashore and found a vantage point from where he could watch the ship. It wasn't long before he saw several gentlemen board the ship and shortly after they disappeared into the main cabin four of them reappeared and then disappeared below decks. Shortly after this, the last, and more disreputable, of the gentlemen reappeared from the cabin with Flora in tow.
Joseph almost lost the two of them when the gentleman hired a hansom, but then Joseph, not used to having coin or spending it extravagantly, remembered that he did have same and hired a cab to follow the other.
Late that night, in a seedy hotel room, Joseph committed his first and only act of barbarism. While gently trying to wake Flora, after having snuck into the room through an open window, Joseph accidentally woke the pimp who had purchased Flora to work in his stable.
Joseph had come prepared and the knife in his hand made a quick, deep, slash across the man's throat. Before Flora could scream Joseph awakened her rudely by placing the handle of the knife between her teeth and slapping her naked breast.
While Flora, after composing herself, tried to wipe the man's blood off her body, with the remnants of a sheet, Joseph, as if he had done this a hundred times, calmly searched the man's possessions and took anything that he could find that might be of value to them in the future, particularly the man's purse which contained a decent sum of coin.
Lying low was nothing new to Flora and Joseph. After ducking through the window, and down the fire escape, they found a hayloft in an abandoned stable. Rather than attract attention by running, the two stayed in the hay, making up for all their missed nights, and lived off the remains of the provisions Joseph had bought in Gravesend, England.
After two days, and their lovemaking had not been interrupted by searching policemen, they came to the conclusion that they had found a rather good hiding spot and decided to use it for a base of operations.
To avoid drawing attention to themselves they stayed away from their new found lodgings while working. Each evening after dark they would venture forth and travel to a part of town that was far from where they were living.
Choosing a different part of the city each night, often proved unproductive but it did give them a chance to get the lay of the land and to avoid being recognized.
Some nights they came home empty handed while other nights were more profitable. Though it is commonly believed that crime doesn't pay it is also know that some thieves never get caught.
By working a different part of town each evening, and sometimes afternoon or early morning, and wearing the appropriate apparel for the location, and the performance, the two stayed one step ahead of the law.
They tried everything from prostitution to entering homes. Everything outside of robbing a bank, until one night they tried that too.
Having accumulated more wealth than they cared to hide in the hay loft, fearful that someone might find it, or them, they had rented separate apartments and opened a bank account.
One evening, dressed in fine array, they were passing their bank, after closing time, and noticed a clerk working late. Pressing upon the clerk, who recognized them, the urgency of an imaginary situation, they persuaded him to open the door. Then, with the aid of a knife, they persuaded him to open the safe.
Leaving the clerk bound and gagged they returned to their apartments where they collected a minimum of clothing, a sufficient supply of food and water, and retired to their hay loft for a fortnight.
Never venturing forth for even one minute they waited until travelling was safe and then arranged for public transportation to leave town.
In Augusta, Georgia the two, separately, proceeded to open a bank account in every bank. Each account was under a different name and no two accounts were opened with the same amount of money. A week later they revisited all the banks and made another deposit.
After staying in a fine hotel for two weeks and becoming rather bored with living the legal life the two chose to make arrangements with one of the finest legal firms in the city.
The firm, with their permission, would draw upon an account in their name and provide for their two year old daughter who, though they loved her very much, had become a burden, and would be put in the finest of boarding homes with provision for her college education.
They further left, with the lawyers, a will listing all of the bank accounts and the names they were under. The will gave the legal firm power of attorney.
Flora and Joseph, after kissing their daughter farewell at the boarding lodge, purchased clothing designed for the wild west and were never seen, nor heard from, again, except for a letter received several years later.
The legal firm of James, Brown, Horvitz, and Spatz held, for many years, an enviable record of honesty and trustworthiness. However, any large company, that stays in business for a number of years, inevitably goes through a change of staff.
As employees are replaced due to firings, quittings, and promotions, accounts change hands. Other than for the odd time when a raise was demanded for Beth's upkeep, the account had lain in status with a lowly clerk issuing the monthly maintenance cheque.
A frumpy old shrew came bouncing into the office one morning demanding that arrangements be made for Beth to attend college. It took a bit of scurrying about to find that the account of one Elizabeth Penelope Bainbridge, descended from the MacDonalds, on her mother's side, was now under the care of one Robert Hammon.
It happened that Robert Hammon was, though only a junior partner, tied up in a law suit, but he did promise Mrs. Gerhardt that he would review the file and get back to her within a couple of days.
Staying late that night Robert read through the file and composed letters to most of the banks in town. Over the next few days he compiled the results of his inquiries.
Not waiting for the replies to his letters he visited Mrs. Gerhardt and her ward. Beth was a comely lass, just slightly younger than Robert's son Phillip.
Robert explained to the two ladies that due to the expenses encountered over the last few years there was not a lot of money left in the estate but there would be enough for two years of finishing school if Mrs. Gerhardt could find one that was not too expensive.
He failed to mention, however, the letters he had sent to the banks or the accounts they pertained to. He also failed to mention the letter that was in the file. A letter that told of a twenty acre plantation, called Fern Glen, on the shores of the Alabama River, that Joseph had won in a game of cards, while aboard a river boat. In the letter was the deed to the property.
Over the next two years Robert took good care of the Bainbridge estate. The bank queries had come back showing a healthy accumulation of interest over the past few years.
The sum total of all the accounts was an amount to make heads turn. For the most part he allowed them to stay as they were, making only small withdrawals to cover some necessary expenses, such as Elizabeth's schooling.
Robert's son was opinionated and lazy. Unable to keep a job, Phillip could usually be found lying about the house. Robert encouraged him to visit a haberdasher and begin courting one Elizabeth Bainbridge with the proviso that if he did a good job of it he would never have his father yelling at him again.
With things in Atlanta, seemingly, under control, Robert booked a trip to Alabama to visit Fern Glen. With visions of a palace royal Robert was struck dumb by the reality, a two room hovel which hadn't been maintained for many a year.
The general overseer, one Beauregard Steveston, was a shady sort who preferred to spend most of his time lying in the cool water of the creek that ran through the main yard. It had not taken a lot of conversation to gather that the man preferred to spend his afternoons in the water in the company of one or two young niggers of the female persuasion.
In fact it took little persuasion on Beauregard's behalf to get Robert to join him, and a couple of young nigger gals, of Robert's choosing, for an afternoon of relaxation in the water.
The next day's visit to the sawmill was not quite as pleasant. The mill was in bad shape as was the, drunken, overseer in charge.
On the other hand, however, a visit to the bank in Lower Peach Tree proved that the plantation, though not up to potential was more than paying for itself. One or two loads of lumber per week were produced by the sawmill which sold for enough to cover the expenses of the entire plantation. The small harvest of peanuts and cotton was pure profit.
Having kept the two overseers on a tight budget, for which the banker charged a nominal fee, had kept the little plantation in the black. The banker had also explained the potential of the place, if it was run properly.
Using his power of attorney, Robert used the money in the bank, to purchase all the land surrounding the little plantation, including another little plantation to the North upon which he decided to retire.
Putting Beauregard on a commission incentive as well as a base wage he asked the overseer to increase the cotton and peanut crop and expand into vegetables. Taking a leisurely route home, via Mobile and Charleston, Robert had never seen the ocean, he arranged for the purchase and delivery of more slaves, and newer equipment for the sawmill.
Six months later Robert repeated the trip and had Beauregard instruct the hands to enlarge the houses on both plantations as well as build a swimming pond near the second house. He also replaced the overseer of the sawmill with a man who knew something about logging.
With visions of retiring, surrounded by black skinned nymphs, Robert made two more expeditions to the South. Each time making small improvements to the economic viability of the plantation and on the way home, stopping in mobile to acquire a few more slaves.
When Elizabeth graduated and many of her class mates walked down the aisle, she joined them, on the arm of Phillip Hammon. There wedding presents included a honeymoon in Mobile via Charleston.
Robert would meet them in Alabama, after winding up affairs in Atlanta, and escort them to their new home in Lower Peach Tree.
With the wedding set Robert transferred the last of the moneys and all of the holdings in the estate to his son. Husbands automatically owned everything that came into a marriage and Elizabeth would never know that she hadn't married a wealthy land baron.
Elizabeth and Phillip spent the first night of their honeymoon at the Hotel Fairchild in Atlanta. Although the day had gone splendidly, the gift of a plantation, overwhelming, to both of them, and the prospects of an adventure, exciting, the wedding nuptials were a catastrophe.
As with most girls of her stature Elizabeth had had absolutely no experience with men before her wedding. She had, also, no experience with women. She didn't know that she was different.
Not a lot different, just a little. Just enough to cause her new husband, who had experienced one or two other girls and one or two prostitutes, to become upset.
Elizabeth was of average height and average looks, that is to say, she was not beautiful, nor was she ugly, handsome would probably be a good description. Her height was average, her weight was average. Her hair hung down past her shoulders and she walked well, holding her shoulders back and her chin high. She looked and acted like a lady.
However her breasts were large, abundant some might say. A fact that Phillip had tried to overlook for his father's sake. But worse than that she was deformed. Grotesquely so, in Phillip's eyes.
Long before she had begun ovulating Beth had learned about sex. Not from other children, but on her own. Her body, like that of a young boy's, demanded attention. Unlike most girls who's sex is hidden beneath folds of flesh, Beth's stood out. Like a boy's it would grow stiff at odd times and rub against her clothing. It was only natural that Beth would rub it back and, consequently, learned, at an early age, the art and enjoyment of masturbation.
It's not that she was a true hermaphrodite. There was no testicular development. It was just clitoral enlargement.
Similar in shape to a miniature penis but projecting towards her toes, instead of her nose, when it became engorged.
After several hours of normal foreplay and embarrassed undressing Phillip finally reached the point where he was about to enter his wife for the first time. As his hand went to assist his entry, it encountered the abnormality and after much coaching on his part Elizabeth finally allowed him to light a candle and examine her.
Phillip's inexperienced, and incorrect, conclusion was that Elizabeth was part man. As far as he was concerned the honeymoon, and the marriage, was over.
When he explained to his father why he was home, alone, on his wedding night, the abuse he had heaped upon his bride as he left the marital chamber was as nothing compared to the lecture he received from his father.
"I don't care if she has an entire penis. I don't care if she has testicles. I don't give a god damn if she is a man dressed as a woman. She has nearly a hundred acres of land, over a hundred slaves, and several thousand dollars. All of which become yours if you consummate the marriage."
"If you don't marry her you will be penniless for the rest of your life because I have sunk everything that I own into that plantation and I expect you to take care of me in my old age. Now you get back to that hotel and you stick your thing in her and make this marriage legal even if you have to stick her thing in you. Do you understand me you ungrateful little whelp?" he hollered as he shoved Phillip out the door.
Dutifully, Phillip returned to the hotel. After many hours of apologizing and with many false starts, the marriage was finally consummated, long after the sun had risen.
Having given notice to his employers, and sold his house, Robert finished off his two weeks, cleaned out his desk, and joyfully left the office to begin his journey. As he stepped off the sidewalk to hail a hansom he was struck down by a beer wagon.
The two newlyweds were still asleep in their bed when the manager of the hotel interrupted them to tell Phillip of the death of his father.
There was no will to read. Robert had combined his small fortune with that of Beth's and it was all Phillip's by right of marriage.
The law firm, going through Roberts files to find a will, realized what had happened and explained it all to Beth. Though she had been married for her money there was nothing they could do about it. Her husband now owned her fortune.
Devastated, Beth not only realized why her husband had returned to the marital bed, she also realized the reason for his entire courtship. She now knew all his words of devotion were false.
She rashly told him that though she may have to share her house with him she would never again share her bed with him. She would in time realize that this was not a punishment for him but for her.
All pretence of a happy marriage gone, and the funeral behind them, the unhappy couple changed their honeymoon plans. Instead of taking the scenic route via the Atlantic ocean they travelled directly overland to their new home.
Plans of living by herself in her home, while her husband lived in Robert's house on the Northern part of the plantation, were dashed, when they found that Robert's house had burned to the ground.
Still with visions of a grand Southern colonial home dancing through their minds they came to the main plantation. To say they were as shocked as Robert had been upon his first sighting would be an understatement. Beau had turned over the chore of enlarging the house to the overseer of the mill who said he would supply the materials and the men.
The materials, particularly the lumber were of top quality. The men were mill hands who had absolutely no idea how to build a corral let alone a house.
Where, when Robert had visited, there had been two livable rooms, the carpenters, had torn out walls to build onto. Now there was a conglomeration of wood that one could hardly call walls let alone rooms.
Her dreams were shattered. But not her life. Unlike her husband who had had a home all his life she had never had anything. Though legally this pile of timber belonged to Phillip, morally it belonged to her and it was the only thing she had ever owned in her life.
Resolutely, despite Phillip's protests and desires to return to town and stay in a hotel, Elizabeth Penelope Bainbridge, of the MacDonalds, alighted from the carriage and directed her servants to carry her luggage into her house.
"You may leave as you wish. As you know there are no accommodations in Lower Peach Tree. I for one have been in that confounded carriage for far too long. If you wish to return to Selma you are free to do so. This is my home and here I will stay."
Thoughts of the long carriage journey dissuaded Phillip and he stayed, for two nights. Unused to hardship of any kind he could no longer tolerate sleeping in the haymow any longer. Early on the third morning he readied the carriage, threatening to go to town and sell the estate.
"You may go to town. You may stay in town. You may go to China. I don't care. But if you ever mention selling my estate again I will hunt you to the ends of the earth and rip the manhood, of which you are so proud, off your body and feed it to one of those nigger gals that you were cavorting with, last night, in the haymow."
As the carriage pulled out of the yard Beth added, "And while you are in town I would greatly appreciate you finding some carpenters to come out here and build me a proper house."
Whether Phillip heard her or not she didn't know as he didn't reply. However several days later a white carpenter and five black helpers came traipsing across the field from the landing at the river.
Having spent most of her life in school Beth was a great believer in training and the first thing she did was have one of her niggers assigned to the carpenters, and each of his helpers, to learn the craft.
Although the hovel she was living in was rather draughty the roof did keep the rain out and the weather was warm. Beth decided the first task for the builders should be new quarters for the crew at the sawmill as their buildings were beyond repair. Beth, Beau, Adam, the new overseer at the sawmill, and the carpenter walked the forest, chose a site, laid out the plots and designed the cabins, stables, work sheds, and kitchen.
Leaving Beau to move back into the main house where he had been living before Beth arrived, she took up temporary quarters, along with the carpenters, at the sawmill site. Ostensibly this was done to save the long walk to and from the work site and the main plantation everyday. In actuality Beth did not care for Beau and did not feel comfortable around him and his paganistic ways with the nigger gals.
When Phillip returned a few weeks later he was perturbed that construction on the house had not even commenced. Beth pointed out to her perturbed husband that the success of the plantation depended on the workers and their housing must come first. When the sawmill employees were suitably housed then the cotton pickers needed new quarters.
She suggested that he might want to consider returning to Salem and hiring another carpenter to come and build the other quarters, as she had learned that the first carpenter who had arrived had no idea how to build a large building and that nigger shanties was about the best that he could do.
After some discussion the two of them decided that they should catch a boat downstream to Mobile where they could find a carpenter and a designer who actually knew something about structures bigger than a hen house.
Renting lodgings in separate hotels the two spent the winter on the Gulf of Mexico. There they met with an architect who designed them a small mansion and arranged for a work crew to take the necessary supplies up river and commence the work.
In Mobile, Beth learned the power of wealth. As word spread throughout the city that she was of some substance she was wined and dined and invited to balls.
Having led a sheltered life Beth had never met gigolos or tasted alcoholic beverages. Without her husband to chaperone her she easily succumbed to the attentions of a male who, mistakenly, thought that she was a young divorceež and ripe for the picking.
When Beth awoke the next morning, with her first hangover, and found a strange man pawing at her, she was aghast. When the man said that she had promised him money she was dumbstruck. She couldn't believe that she had said such a thing.
She told him that she didn't normally promise money without her husband's consent because he kept her on a very tight budget.
At the mention of the word husband the gigolo made his excuses and left her boudoir, but not her life. At social gatherings she would often run into her paramour who, if he couldn't find a wealthy target, would ply his affections on Beth. Although she knew the man was a gold digger she still found his attentions flattering, for after all he was rather dashing, and she was young and emotionally immature.
One night after a long evening of dancing she agreed to let him escort her home and, with trepidation, allowed him access to her chambers. The foreplay was enjoyable and the feelings were delightful but in the end she found that he wasn't really after her, but her deformity.
He had become enraptured with the idea of making love to her because she wasn't normal. She called him disgusting and perverted and chased him out of her rooms, and out of her life.
With the coming of the spring, and the slave ships from Africa, Beth and Phillip ventured forth to the auction block where they bought some new hands for their homestead and, hiring barges, took their possessions upstream.
Construction of their new home was well under way. They had both decided that a mansion at this time would be superfluous. A smaller home would do for now.
Beth's trip downstream had been a wondrous and worthwhile adventure. They had learned much about farming and logging and had met new buyers for their products.
On the other hand it had been a very frustrating experience for Beth. From her husband's reactions she had feared that all men would find her repulsive. From the attention paid to her at the balls she now knew that men did find her attractive, with her clothes on.
Walking the streets of Mobile she had seen lovers hand in hand everywhere. Such scenes only caused her to feel alone. She was not yet twenty years old but her future looked bleak.
Men would either reject her or pursue her for her grotesque growth. She would never be a mother.
On a street corner she saw a nigger calling for people to praise the Lord and recalled the Sundays spent in Church. Mrs. Gerhardt was not a devoutly religious person but she had felt that her wards required some knowledge of the Good Book and had made them attend church regularly.
Spying a church, Elizabeth went in and talked to the minister who just happen to know of a nigger who was well versed in the word. Didn't know how to read, no, no, but was well tutored and knew the scriptures by heart. Nearly word for word.
Beth bought the black nigger and called him her Black Preacher.
At Fern Glen the carpenters had finished their work at the sawmill and were working on the quarters for the field hands. Beth had them discontinue their labours there until they had constructed a church. She chose a spot at the top of a little rise between the new house and sawmill so that it would be equal walking distance for all. And all would attend every Sunday, including overseers and husband.
Slowly the new plantation was taking shape, construction was well under way, the new niggers were settling in. Production was increasing, profits would be up this year over last.
Yet Beth was far from happy. She would see niggers holding hands. She would see them kissing. She would see horses breeding. Sometimes she even saw niggers breeding.
At these times she would get strange feelings. Her womanhood would become engorged and rub against her skirts. Alone in her room she could relieve her physical tensions but her hand was not sufficient to relieve her emotional needs. She wanted a man.
She had only had a man once, well, twice, but the second man didn't count because she couldn't remember anything between the elevator and the morning after.
The only man she could remember was a farcical affair. He had tried many times and each time he started to enter he would lose his rigidity. It took many tries to consummate the act and then it wasn't a pleasant experience. The memories being even more unpleasant than the actuality now that she knew he had had to force himself to do it.
There were now three white carpenters, as well as two white overseers, on the plantation and Beth considered them all, but they were much too old. The youngest of them reminding her of Phillip's father.
There were times when she even considered one of the young niggers, especially when she was examining them to decide which ones were suitable for stud purposes.
It was while examining the female niggers that Elizabeth realized how different she was. She, like her husband, began to think of herself as grotesque.
Alone in her room, her nightly administrations were no longer enjoyable. Her manipulations a hated necessity. In frustration she would slap herself and pinch herself, finding relief in the pain.
In the fields she would take her frustrations out on the niggers. Chastising them when she saw them holding hands, even going so far as having Beau whip them if they were kissing, an act which she outlawed.
Time rolled on. The plantation grew. The unrest grew. Production dropped. Beatings and whippings became more frequent. Phillip spent more time in Selma and Mobile.
Each spring Beth made the trip to Mobile and flirted with the gentlemen at the balls then took her frustrations out on herself in the bridal suite that she would rent while in town.
Beau and Beth became inseparable, beating the niggers, physically abusing them while examining them, then Beth would leave while Beau had his time with the gals. There were now many half white youngsters running around the slave quarters.
Beth knew that Beau would have been only too happy to give her a child, but she feared, as perverted as she knew him to be, that he might be like the gigolo she had met in mobile and only want to continue their relationship because of her grotesqueness, so she ignored his veiled hints.
Beth enjoyed the trips to Mobile, not the trips themselves, which were long and arduous but the time spent in the city. Over the years she and Phillip had been accepted into the society. The city had come to know them as the wealthy plantation owners from up river, she was descended from the MacDonalds you know.
They made a handsome couple as they entered a room, Beth's long gloved hand resting on Phillip's arm. Her flounced skirt trailing across the parquet flooring. Her buttoned bodice cut lower than most women would dare. Phillip, sporting the latest silk top hat and suede boots made from one of their own cows.
She enjoyed the repartee with the other ladies and the attentions of the men. She would have danced all night if the music would have continued.
The days she spent shopping or inspecting the slaves at the auction barns. How the other ladies tittered when they heard that bit of gossip.
It was on one such foray that she discovered Tarka. At first she thought he was an overseer but the auctioneer set her straight, explaining that he was to be sold as a slave along with the niggers he had come in with. He told her that though Tarka claimed to be all Irish, he was in fact part nigger.
"You know how these high colours try to pass themselves off as white." He told her. "They a lying bunch a rascals them niggers."
Self consciously Beth passed Tarka by while she continued to inspect the black niggers.
Beth thought about Tarka all night. A white nigger. He would have to do whatever she told him. It wouldn't be like she was cavorting with an animal, he was mostly white, which meant that he was mostly human. With that red hair she could tell herself that he was white.
One of the boys at the boarding house where she had grown up had been Irish so she knew where Ireland was. Tarka did look a bit like Sean. Maybe he was all Irish. Then she wouldn't be cavorting with an animal.
On auction day, with mild hints from Beth, Phillip bought Tarka.
During the trip upriver Beth kept her eye on Tarka. She cringed when Beau whipped him but admired the way he took the punishment without whimpering.
In the hustle and bustle of unloading Beth lost track of Tarka and didn't realize that he had been sent to the sawmill.
Not wanting to arouse suspicion Beth refrained from asking where Tarka had gone and with other things on her mind he slowly moved to the back of her memory until one day one of the nigger gals gave birth to a near white baby.
Beau said the baby was from the red headed white nigger. The fantasies of Tarka reappeared in Beth's mind and she was consumed with jealousy. Taking the whip from Beau she struck Okoni, over and over, scarring the slave and killing her baby. Feeling like a fool she ran from Beaus' startled gaze.
In the days that followed, Beth, making her usual outings and rounds, kept an extra eye open for the elusive white nigger but, though she visited all four corners of the plantation, she saw no sign of him. Until the day her horse ran away with her.
He was there. After all her looking, he had found her. But she was frightened, and flustered, and then he was gone, again. She would have to find him, but now was not the time.
Giving Beau a dressing down for being so careless, with his whip, she began to walk back through the fields, leading her horse.
That night, while taking a stroll, she saw Beau cavorting in the pond. Thinking that no one would be about after dark he was having his way with a young filly. Feeling unfulfilled stirrings in her loins Beth sat in the dark and watched the antics.
When the two were through making waves, Beau slapped the gal on the butt, chasing her back to her crib. She went scooting past Beth without seeing her. Beau lay back in the pond to relax.
Holding her skirts so they wouldn't rustle or drag in the mud, Beth walked slowly forward and, placing her foot on the top of Beau's head, pushed him under the water.
Beau bounced back out of the water, sputtering and cursing.
"My what a foul mouth you have Mr. Steveston. And in the company of ladies."
Beau too dumbfounded to continue his tirade stood, open mouthed, water dripping from his privates.
"Excellent idea, Mr. Steveston. Wash your privates. I am sure that after the way you have been carousing they need cleaning."
"I swear, sir. The way you carry on with these black girls one would think your skin should be black. Perhaps you are more black then you let on. Maybe you are a white nigger like the one that saved me this morning."
"Speaking of white niggers, Beauregard. The one who saved me this morning. Where does he work? I never see him around."
Having regained his composure Beau had sunk back into the water to cover his nakedness. "That's Tarka. He works up to the sawmill."
"I believe he looks after the horses."
"He does seem to have a way with horses."
Pausing for thought she backed away from the water. Before turning to leave she said, "Don't stay in there too long. It may shrivel up and there will be nothing left for all those little nigger gals."
Casually, a couple of days later, meeting Beau in the stables, she again brought up the subject of Tarka.
"Basha seems to be overworked. I was wondering about that white nigger up to the mill. Perhaps he could work here, sort of a reward for saving me the other day. It would also ease the burden on pore Ol' Basha. Perhaps that old tack room on the end of the barn could be cleaned out and a bed put in."
Though it was said with a smile Beau got the hint that her request wasn't to be questioned. He knew he was still in rough waters from having set her horse to flight.
Beth stayed away from the stables for several days, requesting that Basha bring her horse to the house when she wanted to go riding.
Finally, with trepidation, and beating heart, Beth walked to the stables, one morning, to select a horse only to find that only Basha was present. Tarka and the head hostler were out on the road with the buggy, breaking in a new team.
When she returned from the fields, later in the day, and took her horse back to the stables, Tarka was there but he was in conversation with Phillip.
It seemed as if fate was against her. Every time Beth went near the stables, on one excuse or another, or near where Tarka should be, he was either not there or with someone else.
One warm summer evening, the humidity making sleep impossible, not even a breeze wafting through her open windows, Beth left the house looking for cooler air. At least that is what she told herself as she walked toward the pond. Without thinking, however, her feet seemed to take her towards the stable rather than towards the pond.
As she drew near the end of the barn she could hear Tarka's voice. Disappointed that he was with someone else she was going to leave but she couldn't hear the whispered reply so she stole closer to the barn.
Expecting to overhear Tarka cavorting with one of the nigger gals she became consumed with jealousy. Controlling her instinct to rush out in the open and confront the two she clung to the side of the barn and eased herself forward until she could hear both parties clearly.
Beth recognized the voice. The gal was Okoni who worked in the kitchen and Tarka was trying to remind her of an affection they had once shared. Okoni was rejecting his advances by reminding him that she was now living with another. Another who's child she was carrying.
Beth could tell that Tarka, like herself, did not find Okoni's words convincing and Tarka was pressing home his suit, overcoming Okoni's weak resistance.
Beth peeked around the corner and saw Tarka enfolding Okoni in his arms. Timidly, unsure of herself, Okoni succumbed to his advances. Slowly she allowed herself to become one with her former husband.
Tarka held Okoni tightly, their lips sealed together, until Beth stepped on a twig.
Beth stepped from behind the barn. Her taffeta gown brushing against the wooden wall had spooked Tarka. As she appeared Okoni, alone, turned to run but Beth stopped her in her tracks, "What are you doing out here girl?" Not giving Okoni time to reply her mistress asked again, "It's nearly midnight. Why aren't you in bed?"
Okoni, finally able to find her voice, replied, "I couldn't sleep, Mist' Hammon. It' just too warm."
"And a full moon too." Beth added. "A full moon will make animals do strange things. You know that house slaves are not allowed to mingle with the outside hands. Now you get back inside."
"Yasum, Mist' Hammon. I going in right now."
"And don't you ever let me catch you out here at night again."
"Yasum, I mean No Mam," Okoni said, already moving towards the big house.
"If I catch you out here again I will have your black hide whipped from your body." she said loudly to the disappearing slave.
Beth watched until she could no longer see or hear the departing Okoni.
Walking into the trees Beth stopped beside the tree which Tarka was hiding behind.
"You can come now, mister white nigger," she spoke softly, "I know you are behind that tree."
Apprehensively Tarka stepped into view. The moonlight filtering through the leaves of the Jasmine trees reflected off his work hardened muscles. For several moments Beth was unable to say anything. The moonlight reflected from the thin sheen of sweat on his body, reminding her of a statue of a Greek God she had seen on a trip to Mobile.
Her intention to chastise this white nigger died on her lips. Instead she told him to take off his trousers.
Tarka knew the penalty for a slave to be found naked with a white woman. "But Mist' Hammon," he started to protest.
"Are you arguing with me nigger?" Beth said sternly, "Do as yore told. Shuck out of those pants."
Slowly Tarka turned his back on his mistress and obeyed her command. The shadows cast by the leaves of the trees and the hollows of his muscles sent chills up Beth's spine. With held breath she requested, "Turn, very slowly, with your arms above your head."
Tarka complied, raising his arms and pirouetting like a ballerina while Beth gazed in awe at this Grecian God.
"Again," she commanded, when Tarka had completed a full circle. When he had turned partially, nearly facing her, she told him to stop. "Stand still."
For several long seconds that seemed to stretch into minutes Beth stared at her moon bathed statue. Slowly she walked across the few feet that separated them. Gingerly reaching out, as though she was afraid it was a dream and it would disappear, she ran the tips of her fingers along his arm, lightly touching his well formed biceps.
When the apparition didn't disappear, Beth became more bold and ran the flat of her hand over Tarka's pectorals. Running the tips of her fingers through the hairs on his chest. Pausing to play with his nipples she felt his manhood brush against her skirts as it became engorged with his warming blood. Boldly she lifted her skirts and sank to her knees.
As she took the weight of his testicles in the palm of her hand he started to step back. "Stand still," she ordered, "I never examined you before you were purchased. I think that it is time that I did."
With her thumb she stroked his scrotum while she stared in awe at his member. She thought it was the most perfectly shaped phallus in the world.
Holding Tarka brought a strange tingling, a desire to scratch her pubes. Brazenly she lifted her skirts and put one hand underneath to sooth the pressure between her legs. With her other hand she lifted Tarka to her lips and caressed his head with her tongue.
Still exploring and experimenting with this new phenomenon she was startled when she fully engulfed him with her mouth and he clamped her head between his hands and began to thrust furiously.
Unknowing, and therefore unprepared for, what was to come, Beth nearly choked when Tarka's movements resulted in the inevitable conclusion. Unable to move away because of Tarka's strong hands she finally managed to clear her mouth but not her mind.
Tarka knew that though he hadn't initiated what had just occurred he could be killed for having participated and it would not be a quick and painless death. Recovering his wits more quickly than Beth he grabbed his pants and ran off through the trees.
Beth sighed as she watched her God disappear amongst the trees. Now she needed him more than ever. Needed him completely and this time she knew where to find him. And find him she would, if she had to wait all night.
The interior of Tarka's room was dark but Beth knew every inch of the little room, having visited it many times, when she knew she wasn't being watched. She knew the smell of it and she sensed, as soon as she entered, that Tarka wasn't home. She thought about waiting but knew that he wouldn't be back.
Unerringly she chose the haymow as the next most likely place for Tarka to hide. As she slowly opened the door to the barn she saw two white orbs disappear behind the edge of the hay.
Though she had been in the barn many times she did not know her way around and, in the darkness, she blundered about before finding the ladder to the loft. Stumbling about in the hay, her long dress catching and impeding her, she was upon Tarka before she realized it.
As she fell, face down, she felt him roll over from under her feet. Fearing that she would lose him in the night, if he got away again, she ordered him to stay still.
"If you leave, I will go down the ladder, roll around in the manure, rip my dress, and yell, rape, so loud they will hear me in Selma."
Elizabeth was a young lady. She had never had a satisfying sexual experience with a male, yet she was surrounded by males. Only three of them were white, she could not order them to do anything, nor did she desire to do so.
There were many of the non whites that looked desirable but in her society it was unheard of for a white woman to frolic with a nigger. They were not humans, they were animals, and only men would be so base as to have sex with an animal.
Over the weeks and months of waiting, and fantasizing, Beth had convinced herself that Tarka was not a nigger and, in her minds eye, he would like her, despite, but not for, her abnormality.
In reality, the experience was greater than her imaginings. Turning around and crawling across the hay, shedding her clothing as she went, Beth, wiggling forward like a snake, found her heart's desire.
Sliding along Tarka's back she ordered him to roll over and, as she reached his head, his torso turned and their lips met.
Hungrily she consumed his lips and just as eagerly her kiss was returned. Like two starving animals the two tore at each other. Fingers pressing into flesh, trying to draw each other closer. Mouths hungrily trying to devour tongues.
They rolled over, with Beth on the bottom and Tarka placing his knee between her's. Beth, unresisting, spread her legs and reached between them with both hands, using one to guide him into her and the other to hold herself out of the way so there was no obstruction.
Beth didn't realize, that for Tarka, as well as herself, this was the first consummation of the love act, other than for masturbation, for several years.
Like a machine gone wild, he pounded her into the hay and, after only a few strokes, cried out his release.
Sensing the coming of his explosion, with her inner soul, she screamed out her joy of fulfilling a man's need which heightened her senses and her body was ripped by waves of shattered nerves as she, too, orgasmed.
Tarka stroked her hair, brushing it back from her lips, "Thank you," he whispered.
"Thank you," she panted in reply. As she felt him start to rise she put her arms around his shoulders and whispered, "Please. Just hold me for awhile."
Tarka settled back inside her and she wiggled her hips to settle him in, then froze as she felt herself rub against him. He didn't move away or seem to notice, his body continuing to cuddle against her, so she settled back and enjoyed the warmth of his arms.
Lying together, still joined, Tarka began to nibble at her ear. She felt the tip of his tongue slowly circle around the outside of her ear. Making ever smaller circles, it entered, and penetrated her ear as far as it would fit, which wasn't to the bottom but was far enough to reawaken her desires.
Rolling her white God onto his back she began to move against him. His manhood, partially deflated, quickly recovered, and his hips soon joined in rhythm with hers. Again she reached a peak that would have had her screaming her joy to the entire plantation if she hadn't bitten his shoulder.
Moaning, she collapsed on top of him, his arms going about her and holding her close to his heaving chest, his manhood still continuing to throb and jump within her. She could feel her little man doing likewise against his pubic hairs and wondered if he noticed but decided she didn't care whether he did or not. Tonight was her's and be damned with tomorrow.
However tomorrow was further away than Beth could have ever imagined. Tarka was as starved for love as she was and knowing that he could be killed for what had happened so far was determined to make the most of the situation.
When their two bodies had cooled Tarka began kissing her. Slowly wiggling out of her arms, and sliding out of her, and out from under her, he left a trail of kisses across her ear, through her hair, down her neck, and across her shoulders. By the time Tarka reached her feet and began nibbling at her toes she couldn't contain herself any longer.
Beth rolled over, curled about, and launched herself on top of him. Impaling herself on his stake of flesh she began bouncing wildly until he joined her rhythm. Stuffing his long red hair into her mouth she screamed her release into his ear as she felt him flood her with his passion.
After a short sleep, one of them moved, which woke the other, who's movement awoke the first, and the two, still joined, began again, after which they again fell asleep in each other's arms.
Just before dawn Beth awoke to the strangest of feelings. Wet, hot, kisses were being trailed up her inner thigh. She froze as she realized where the path would lead his lips. Frozen with fear that this night would end in terror she dared not breath.
Torn between the desire to run and hide, before he saw her deformity, and to stay and enjoy the passion that was building within her from his administrations, Beth waited too long and the decision was taken from her.
Tarka's tongue entered her womanhood and the feeling was like nothing she had ever imagined. If her husband had walked in now she couldn't have pushed Tarka away. What he would find if he continued upwards was no longer of consequence.
Beth was beyond control as she writhed beneath his snakelike tongue.
As his tongue moved higher his mouth opened, as if it had done this a thousand times and engulfed her oversized clitoris. With gentle lips he held it tight while his tongue encircled it, delving into, and exploring, all the little folds of flesh.
White flashes passed before her eyes. As he sensed her arousal, Tarka, using only his lips, and his tongue, began to masturbate her clitoris. His lips, tightly holding the flesh, moved the skin back and forth along her nerves and, as they were exposed on the end, his tongue would lick the sensitive tip.
Rolling her head sideways she stuffed handfuls of straw into her mouth to keep the world from sharing her pleasure. Then with both hands holding his head she began to buck against him until she literally passed out.
When Beth came to she realized that she was alone. At first she wasn't sure where she was and then memories came flooding back. Without even opening her eyes she knew it was daylight.
Slowly moving her arms and her legs she realized that she was fully dressed. Below her she could hear Basha and Tarka mucking out the stalls, the two of them talking together in Basha's native tongue.
For a moment Beth was jealous that Tarka was sharing the morning with Basha instead of awakening with her in his arms.
As she silently waited, impatiently, her bladder nearly bursting, for the two to go out of the barn, so she could descend, she realized, that there would be many nights like last night but there could never be a morning together.
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