Xi - Chapter 6 Cat-Box.com
Xi leaned back against the doorframe and brought her hands down to run them through Velouria's soft, dark hair. Velouria placed one last kiss on Xi's abdomen and then inserted the collar's disk into the slot on Xi's belt. Velouria removed the collar from around her neck. She shook her hair so it fell behind her smooth, clay-colored shoulders. Velouria looked up at Xi with big, brown eyes glowing - her lips full and supple. Xi closed her eyes, lost to the pleasure of light touches, until she realized Velouria was fiddling with the belt's locking device again.
"Hey! That's not fair," Xi said playfully.
"The collar is beautiful, my dear," Velouria replied, "but my clients may think I'm strange if I wear it all week regardless of whether we are at dinner or out for a morning walk." Velouria proceeded to shove the collar into her suitcase. "You know how much money this business deal could be for me. I want everything to be perfect."
"Yeah, but if you're not wearing the collar then I shouldn't have to wear the belt."
"My dear, I want you to think of me while I'm gone... and I want you longing for me to come back next week." Velouria finished zipping up her suitcase. She stood and pressed Xi against the doorframe. "I want you... hot... when I return." And she placed a kiss on Xi's lips.
"But, you know how distracted it makes me to be locked in the belt... I have a hard time concentrating on my work or... or anything... And, and what if you loose the collar?"
"Quiet! ...And no more pouting!" Velouria commanded, but she was smiling. "I would never loose such a beautiful treasure. I promise you I'll protect it with my life." She kissed Xi once more and then picked up her luggage and headed out the door. "I don't think I'll be able to call, so check your email..."
Xi's hands slowly dropped to the belt locked about her waist. "Damn!" She thought to herself.
The next day was Saturday and Xi had to work hard to find anything to keep her mind occupied. She spent most of her time checking email, waiting for a message from Velouria. Finally...
"Well, I made it. I've settled in. Looks like I will be real busy this week, but I think that my chances of making the big sale are really good. Wish me luck! Check the link below. If this site comes up you will know that I'm successful! And don't worry. Your treasure is safe. Do you miss me? V."
Xi clicked the link. "Error 404 Web Page not found" appeared in the browser window. She refreshed the link a few times but there was no change.
"Oh, well. Good luck selling your software," Xi thought to herself. Velouria owed rent.
The week passed slowly for Xi. Whenever she had any free time she would check for an email from Velouria or she would follow the link, which still revealed nothing. The link's name didn't even help much. It was just an IP address. She clicked the refresh button again and again.
Could she ever love Velouria as much as she had loved Anna? She tried to envision them together years in the future. She saw them shopping for groceries together on a rainy day in the fall. She saw them quietly eating dinner at some generic burger restaurant on a Friday night. She pictured Velouria kissing her good-bye in the morning with a brief case in her hand, her eyes lined with time and hair fading, leaving Xi alone with the laundry for another day, silently waiting, surrounded by the four walls, reaching down hoping to retouch her youth. But in her vision she can't. Instead there is only a need that screams with the urgency of a kettle on the burner too long slowly expending its vitality with each passing tick of the clock until it melts and folds in on itself...
During the nights Xi lay with the sheets pulled down, frustrated and unable to sleep - her fingertips and nails teasing the naked flesh of her abdomen and breasts until chills ripple through her body. She lay thinking of the collar somewhere far away - the key to her chastity belt, so sufficiently locked about her.
Finally, on Thursday afternoon when she clicked the link the 404 did not appear. Instead she was automatically forwarded to a second web site which then forwarded her again to a simple web page containing 3 nondescript links. Xi clicked the first.
"What the fuck!" Xi whispered. A vibrating hum of fear and anger filled her head and began to obstruct her perception. The link lead to a news article dated the past Monday describing how an ancient artifact had been discovered and was soon to be put up for auction. Experts thought the artifact would bring in record-breaking bids. It then described the artifact as a simple ring of smooth metal with a small disk attached to it by a short chain. There was a picture. It was the collar!
This had to be some kind of joke.
Xi hit the back button and investigated the second link. Once again it was a short Reuters wire describing how the artifact, now referred to as "Anna's Key", had been purchased by an anonymous bidder for $14.6M. Some fancy museum had won the right to display the artifact - a permanent loan.
Velouria would pay for this prank.
Xi, her hands shaking, clicked back and checked the third link. What she saw made her freeze in horror. The link led to a web cam focused on a display case containing, what was without a doubt, her collar. Xi sat and stared in disbelief at the image. Each minute or so the page updated and a new set of visitors could be seen looking in awe at the beautiful treasure before them. Her hand dropped to her imprisoned sex - grasping the impregnable barrier.
The mouse pointer changed momentarily to indicate that she had a new email message.
It was from Velouria. Xi hoped that this was the "just kidding!" email that would explain the elaborate details of Velouria's joke. Quickly, her hopes were dashed. How could she be so fucking stupid to let the collar out her grasp? Tears of frustration formed in her eyes as she read the message. The room became cloudy and she grasped the desk afraid that she might pass out and collapse to the floor. As she read, each word echoed in her head in Velouria's smooth Latin accent.
"Dear, Xi. My sales week has been better than even I imagined. Hopefully you've checked the links on the web site by now. Who would have thought that I would be able to get so much for the collar? Wow! I know that you will miss the key, but how could I pass up such an opportunity? I'm glad that the buyers were able to strike a deal with the museum. At least you can still see the collar via web cam from anywhere in the world!
"And guess what? This is exciting news! I told the buyers about your half of the treasure too. They said that the belt is certainly worth several times what I got for the collar. But I told them that it is totally up to you whether you want to sell or not. They are EXTREMELY interested. I showed them a picture of you and explained about how you are wearing the belt even now and how it is impossible to remove the belt without the collar. That fact alone increases the belt's value twofold. We agreed that under no circumstances should anyone ever, ever be allowed to do anything to compromise that value.
"They were disappointed that I refused to broker a deal for the belt (and you, of course). But they said that you are able to contact the buyers simply by inquiring at the museum.
"Xi, you wouldn't believe the security that they have surrounding the collar. It's sealed in a case behind six inches of bulletproof glass. The case is in a room with doors as thick as a bank vault. There are guards and alarms all over the place. The collar is as secure as the Crown Jewels. No one would ever be able to steal it.
"Hmmm... I wonder if they would put you in a little glass display case too...
"Well, I've got some traveling to do. I'll be thinking of you, Forevergreen, my old lover. On to somewhere near, and far in time!
"PS. I do have to admit to you though... they did offer me an extra $5M just to give them your address. I will decide whether or not to accept that offer within the hour. It would be a nice little bonus... I'm really so sorry. I'm sure you understand. It's only business."
"Mm!" Xi jerked awake from the nap she had been taking. Her naked body was covered in sweat. The afternoon breeze no longer blew through the window of her bedroom and the air had become heavy and stagnant.
"Another strange dream..." she thought.
Vibrations surged though her body with each squeeze of her beating heart. She arched her back in a stretch and slid her hands down her torso - driven there by her rising libido.
Xi eyed the wooden trunk half concealed by shadows in the corner of her bedroom. She thought of the belt and collar that lay inside. Anna's treasures. They were calling her again. She remembered the way that they felt upon her body - the pull and the tingle...
Something had awoken within Xi. She felt insatiable and was unsure if it was good or bad. Her dreams were characterized by strange, dark fantasies - frightening and intoxicating at the same time.
Xi had not locked the collar or belt upon her body ever since key experiment ended several weeks ago. Perhaps she was a little afraid of them. Was it the strange dreams that fueled her fear?
Maybe her fear arose from the fantasy stories that she had recently read on the Internet. Many stories could be found describing a hapless young woman who becomes ensnared in a cruel device of erotic torture because of some magical property of the object or because she did not understand its technology.
Xi did not believe that Anna's belt and collar were "magic" in any way, but they did contain evidence of a superior technology that she did not understand. For example, how could the metal faceplate wick moisture away from her body? Some ceramics had that property, she thought. But did they have the belt's strength?
The collar had somehow tightened its grip on the pole during the two weeks it was locked there. How did that happen and why?
How did the locking mechanism work? It did not seem to be a mechanical process. Was it electromagnetic? As a test Xi had placed the belt on top of the TV to see if it would distort the picture or affect the reception of local channels. No effect was apparent.
Was there something powering the belt and collar to switch between modes? If so, what was the power source? And, would that power source fail one day?
Xi had taken up the practice of locking and unlocking the belt and collar twenty times every morning. Perhaps every transition drained some kind of battery. She would be quite sad if the locking mechanism failed, but it's best to be cautious.
Xi had no idea when she would gain the confidence to once again wear the belt locked about her waist. Eventually...
She rolled over to her bedside table and grabbed her journal to record the afternoon's vivid dream.
Xi turned and looked up the aisle of the market, replacing the small, seedless watermelon on the heap. Red, the bartender from Diamonds, was walking towards her with a basket of groceries hanging from her overly braceleted forearm. Xi felt her face flush in embarrassment. She hoped her gritted teeth might pass as a smile, "Red."
"You!" Red's black eyes wide, her smile, growing and, Xi felt, decidedly wicked. "You are legendary!"
An "oh, god" scratched its way out between the teeth of Xi's clamped jaw.
"People talk about 'the night of the belt' like it was the Second Coming. People brag about being eyewitnesses. It's incredible."
"Oh, god... I'm so embarrassed... I think I had a bit too much to drink that night. I'm out of practice, I guess."
"No! Don't be! You've actually started a trend. One woman wore a chastity belt over a set of tights and another... Oh, my god... she just ripped off her clothes and danced all night in a belt and metal, sun-shaped nipple covers. The belt had this humongous padlock that just flopped around..."
Xi looked to see how many people might be overhearing their conversation, wishing Red wouldn't talk so loud.
"...I haven't seen anything as beautiful as yours though."
Red stopped, perhaps waiting for a reply, apparently oblivious to Xi's enthusiastic look of complete horror. When Xi said nothing, her teeth still clenched, Red went on. "I'm glad I ran in to you though. Someone left a message for you behind the bar. Actually, it was to 'the woman who wore the chastity belt while dancing on stage'. I'm pretty sure that meant you."
"Gentry, she works during the days... she said that a beautiful woman came in and left the message last week some time. I didn't see her, but Gentry kept saying that she was considering growing a penis after seeing the woman. That means a lot, because Gentry is typically SO not gay. We gave her such a hard time that her boyfriend says that we're sprinkling dyke dust in her drinks. Anyway, you should come by and pick up the message. Maybe she's from some modeling agency or something. She left a business card with a name and a company on it... What was the company? cats.com? No... It was cat something dot com..."
"cat-box.com?" Xi asked, suddenly interested, her embarrassment momentarily forgotten.
To be continued in Xi - Chapter 7 - Image