Zara of the Jungle Story by L’Espion https://lespion1944.deviantart.com/ Chapter 4 Slave Bound hand and foot, Zara could only wriggle helplessly as Grafton carried her toward the tent. Her only hope was that the Black porters might help her. “Help me,” she shouted. “I do not wish to mate with him.” Grafton, of course had no idea what she was saying, but he must have guessed. He put her on her feet and clamped a hand over her mouth, muffling her cries. He waved his gun toward the porters. “Any of you pollywogs try anything and I’ll fill you full of lead.” The men backed away from him and he proceeded to carry and drag Zara into the tent. He tossed her down on the cot and proceeded to strip off his clothing. “Now, missy,” he said. “I’m gonna take what’s mine and I’m gonna take it nice and slow.” He straddled her and took out his sheath knife. It took only a few strategic strokes to cut away her crude covering. Grafton gazed down at her naked white flesh. “Damned if you ain’t the prettiest thing I’ve ever seen. This is gonna be mighty fine.” He reached down and began to run his hands over her body. He squeezed her breasts and tweaked her nipples and then moved his hands between her thighs. Zara could do nothing to stop him and she was fearfully aware of the fact that Grafton’s phallus was rapidly swelling. He returned to her breasts and gave her nipples a painful pinch. If he expected any reaction from Zara he was disappointed, as she did not even flinch. This and the fact that he was now fully erect spurred him on to the next stage. He had kept the knife close at hand and he used it to cut the ropes binding her ankles. Then using his hands he pried her legs apart. Zara once again fought him, trying to bring her knees up, but he grabbed her ankles and using his greater strength he spread her. “No,” Zara cried. “I do not wish to mate with you.” Grafton, of course did not understand her, and he would not have listened to her anyway. He pinned her with his weight and then forced himself inside her. Zara howled with rage and tried to bite him. Her efforts were rewarded with a blow to the head that half stunned her. “Damned hellcat,” Grafton cursed. He continued to thrust into her, ignoring the fact that Zara had gone completely limp. However, Zara’s resistance had achieved one thing; Grafton forgot about his plan to prolong the rape. Instead he finished in just a few minutes. “What the hell,” he muttered. “I can always fuck her again any time I want.” He bound Zara’s feet again and pulled on his clothes then he stepped outside the tent. “God dammit,” he said as he looked around the camp. “Where is everybody?” A quick look around the camp revealed that it was completely deserted. Not only that, but all of the other tents were gone, and all of the supplies as well. Not unexpectedly Thorndike was missing also. “God damn jigaboos,” Grafton raged. “They’ve taken everything.” Further exploration revealed that it was not quite everything. For some reason one canoe and a little bit of food had been left. “Bastards,” he muttered. “I’ll teach ‘em not to mess with Harry Grafton.” But not right away, unfortunately. He was stranded in the middle of Africa and his only weapon was his pistol. His only choice was to try and make it to the nearest white settlement and that meant backtracking down river as best he could. Stopping at any of the native settlements would be a waste of time. He didn’t speak the lingo and he had nothing to trade. Or did he? Grafton’s piggy eyes narrowed. Hadn’t they gone past a village with some sort of black slave-trader in it? He remembered Thorndike commenting unfavourably on that fact. He couldn’t remember the name of the village, but he remembered that it had been three villages before the last one. If he could manage to reach it he could trade the girl. She should fetch a good price. And then with the money or goods he could hire a few paddlers and get back to something resembling civilization. After that he’d file a complaint against Thorndike. The Brits might be a bunch of tight-asses, but they were sticklers for enforcing the law. He’d get his money back and start over. He returned to the tent and picked up the girl. She grunted a few fitful complaints as he carried to the riverbank and dumped her in the canoe. He packed the tent and the few possessions that had been in it and clambered in after her. He picked up a paddle and sent the canoe into the main flow of the river. Fortunately, the way he was going was downstream or he’d never have been able to handle the heavy canoe. He was sweating heavily in almost no time a fact that had him wondering how it was that the African paddlers had made the job look so easy. “Damned country,” he muttered. “Ain’t fit for a white man. Should just leave it to the damned jigaboos.” After that he saved his breath to concentrate on handling the canoe. For the most part he kept to the middle of the river so he faced few hazards. Nevertheless, he was utterly exhausted by the time he reached his intended destination. Because there was no one to set up or guard the camp he dared not go ashore and spent uncomfortable nights in the canoe. It was even more uncomfortable for his captive, of course, but he didn’t care about the damned “jungle bunny,” especially since he was far too tired at the end of each day to make use of her. Zara found the journey equally exhausting, but for different reasons. Bound hand and foot, and gagged for most of the day, she could barely move. She continually strained at her bonds, but could barely loosen them and making sure she stayed tied was one of Grafton’s strong points. He often let the canoe drift and when he did he would clamber down to her end of the canoe and check her ropes. If any were loose, he retied them. And so they both arrived, hot, tired, and dirty at the village where Grafton had seen the slaver. His arrival caused the usual kerfuffle as the villagers swarmed around him, but he angrily waved them away, drawing his revolver for emphasis as he dragged the girl from the canoe. By sheer good luck one of the Blacks happened to speak a little English. “Take me to slaver,” he demanded. The Black looked at him curiously and at the girl with even more curiosity. The other villagers were equally distracted by the spectacle of a White man leading a bound and gagged White girl, and it was with some difficulty that he finally made his way to the man he sought. Although Black, the slaver was unlike any other man in the village. First of all he occupied the only tent in the village, a fairly impressive affair of green and white canvas. In addition he did not wear the tradition African loincloth, but instead wore white silk pantaloons and a turban of the same material. He was seated outside the tent, puffing away on a hookah and he looked up with interest as Grafton and his captive approached. At a word from the slaver the other villagers dispersed and he motioned for Grafton to sit with him. “Come, sit with Ayanda.” He gave Grafton and Zara an appraising look.” I see that you have had something of an adventure since you were last here,” he said. “Where is your partner?” Surprised by Ayanda’s fluency, Grafton did not immediately answer the question. “You speak English pretty good,” he observed. “I learned English at a mission school not far from here,” Ayanda answered. He looked at Zara and raised his eyebrows. “Heh,” Grafton said, clearing his throat. “My bastard partner ran out on me. Left me with this wild jungle girl. She only speaks some sort of jigaboo so I can’t understand her. Gotta keep her tied up or she runs away.” “Why did you bring her here?” Ayanda asked. “Well, that should be obvious shouldn’t it?” Grafton answered. “I want to sell her and someone told me you’re in that line of business.” “Slave trading is against the law,” Ayanda said. “But I could take her off your hands in order to protect her. I would, of course, pay you for the trouble of bring her here.” “Now you’re talking,” Grafton said. “I need help getting back to civilization. Give me four boys for paddlers and grunt work along with one months’ supply of food and she’s yours.” Ayanda’s eyes narrowed in his puffy face, and then he nodded. “You will have that,” he said. “I will take the girl.” “Be careful with her. She’s a real hellion,” Grafton warned. “I think she will be fine with me,” Ayanda answered. He rose and barked out orders. Immediately two native women emerged from the tent. They each took one of Zara’s arms and led her away. “They will take care of her,” he said. “Now I will see about your paddlers and supplies.” He barked out more orders and several men came forward. Ayanda explained something in their language and then nodded to Grafton. “Go with them. They will take care of you.” Damn, that was easy, Grafton reflected as he walked away. Should have asked for more. Should’ve known a white woman would fetch a good price. He followed the men back to the canoe where one of the men motioned to him. “We take you,” he said in heavily accented English. “Wait a minute,” Grafton objected. “I don’t want to go today. I need food and rest.” “We take you,” the man repeated, pointing to the canoe. “What are you talking about?” Grafton snarled. “Where are the supplies? This is a double-cross.” He pulled out his revolver and pointed it at the man. It was then that he became aware of the fact that several other men had followed him to the canoe. They formed a semi-circle around him, raised spears in their hands, along with a couple of ancient, but possibly serviceable muskets. “Thieving jigaboos,” Grafton yelled, but he offered no resistance as his guide took the pistol from his hand and once again motioned to the canoe. “We take you.” “Bastards,” he whined, but he took his seat in the middle of the canoe. “What am I supposed to eat?” he continued, as the canoe pushed off. “You no need food,” the African answered. He placed his hands on Grafton’s shoulders and held him in the canoe. “What’re you doing?” Grafton yelled. “Get yer jigaboo hands off me.” In answer another of the tribesmen stepped up and took one of his arms. Both men were quite strongly built, and despite the fact that Grafton was no weakling, his downriver trip had left him in no condition to resist. But what happened next had him struggling furiously. “Let go,” he screamed. “You can’t do this to Harry Grafton.” By now the canoe had reached midstream. Heaving him to his feet the two men dragged him to the side of the canoe and despite his struggles forced him over the side. Grafton screamed and he had a chance to scream a few more times before the crocodiles reached him. Zara was aware of none of this. She only knew that the brutal White man who had captured and ravaged her was gone. She understood nothing of the conversation that had taken place between Grafton and Ayanda, but she guessed from the way that the latter had looked her over that her circumstances had not improved. This was verified as soon as she was taken into Ayanda’s tent. One of the women escorting her removed the gag and she immediately protested her situation. “Why have I not been untied?” she demanded. “This not the way to treat a stranger.” “You are Ayanda’s property now,” one of the women answered. “You have only the rights he gives you and he does not trust you not to run away.” “I am no one’s property,” Zara protested. “The evil White man brought me here. I should not be treated like this.” At that moment Ayanda entered the tent. He was carrying a set of iron shackles. “Put these on her,” he ordered, “and then cut her ropes.” “Let me go,” she said. “I have done nothing to you. You have no right to hold me prisoner.” “I will do what I want with you, girl,” Ayanda said. “Hold your tongue or you will be punished.” The two women closed in on her, one securing the shackle to her right ankle and the other cutting the ropes that bound her wrists. The other end of the chain was then attached to a ring set in a heavy stone, making escape impossible. “Clean her up and then bring her to me.” With escape impossible, Zara decided to save her strength. She was tired and hungry from her ordeal on the river and offered no resistance as the two women attendants washed and combed out the tangled mess that was her hair. “Ayanda will like this one,” one of the women commented. “He has never had a White woman.” He will never have me, Zara thought. But she wasn’t sure how she was going to get away. The heavy shackle on her ankle was beyond her experience and she had no idea how she was going to get it off. She was so tired that she actually fell asleep while the two women fussed over her. One of them took pity on her and went to tell Ayanda while the other finished her grooming. A short while later she returned. “Ayanda says to let her sleep, and to bring her food when she awakes. He will wait until evening to attend her.” The other woman nodded and together they left the tent. When Zara awoke it was dark in the tent and she was alone, but almost immediately one of the women entered holding a torch. “I heard your chain clink,” the woman explained. “I will bring you food.” The food supplied was similar to what she was used to and she was so hungry she would probably have eaten anything placed before her. She wolfed it down while the woman slave watched. As she finished the woman rose and left the tent. A few minutes later Ayanda entered and regarded her by the light of a flickering torch. “You are even more beautiful than I first thought,” he said. “I am tempted to keep you for myself, but I know of buyers who would give me a good price for you. However, there is nothing to stop me from enjoying you before I sell you on .” “You will get no enjoyment from me,” Zara replied. She had gotten to her feet when Ayanda entered and stood defiantly “I will fight you with all of my strength.” “I should whip you for that,” Ayanda snarled, “but I hesitate to damage that beautiful white skin. However, the idea of forcing you to my bed has a certain appeal.” As he spoke he moved toward her with the clear intent on laying his hands on her, but despite the chain around her ankle Zara easily dodged out of the way. She did this twice more before a frustrated Ayanda did what he should have done in the first place. He grabbed hold of the chain near the stone and simply reeled her in. However, if he expected an easy conquest he got an unpleasant surprise. He was met by a scratching, biting, punching, cheetah. He lurched back and roared for help. Several other men rushed into the tent along with the two women who had attended Zara. They quickly closed in on Zara and despite her continued resistance overwhelmed her. “Hold her,” Ayanda bellowed. “She will learn what happens to a slave who offends me.” Zara was dragged over to several cushions that served as Ayanda’s bed and forced down on them. Then she was held there while he forced her legs apart. “Now I will tame this White she-cat,” he said. Zara struggled to escape, but she was held too well. “No, stop,” she cried, and then she gasped in pain as Ayanda forced his way into her. The slaver was much larger than either Thorndike or Grafton and despite his anger he took his time, determined to prolong his pleasure and Zara’s humiliation. Zara grunted as he penetrated her, arching her back in an involuntary reaction as she was ravished. Held fast, she could offer no resistance as Ayanda enjoyed her. He thrust repeatedly into her taking her slowly and controlling his reaction until he was fully satisfied. Only then did he release into her. Grunting in satisfaction Ayanda heaved himself off her. “Tie her to the post,” he ordered. “She still needs another lesson.” A bewildered and exhausted Zara was pulled to her feet. The heavy shackle was removed from her ankle and her wrists were tied in front of her. Then she was led to the centre post of the tent and her arms were drawn over her head. From somewhere in the tent Ayanda produced a multi-thronged whip. “You will be punished for daring to attack me.” He drew back his arm and flailed the whip across Zara’s back and shoulders. Zara could hardly believe the brutality as the whip struck her naked back. It felt as if she was being stung by a dozen bees, but fortunately Ayanda had chosen a punishment whip for female slaves. It hurt immensely, but barely broke the skin. She had suffered much more pain when raiding a bees’ nest she had discovered in a hollow tree, so she simply clenched her teeth and endured the punishment. Her stoicism angered Ayanda. After giving her a few more blows he lay his whip aside. “Bring in Hyena,” he ordered. There was considerable commotion outside the tent including the sound of an animal noise Zara had never heard before. A few moments later a bucking snorting zebra-like animal was brought into the tent. He eyes widened in surprise. The creature was snow white and obviously untamed. It stamped its hooves and tried to break away from its handlers until Ayanda spoke a few words; then miraculously it quieted down. That did not last long, however, as the handlers backed away Ayanda seated himself, picked up his whip and flicked it in Zara’s direction. He added a few words in a language Zara did not understand and suddenly the animal reared up on its hind legs, screaming in anger. It came down on its front hooves, and then reared up again, this time much closer to Zara. She found the threat absolutely terrifying and tried to jerk away from the tent pole. This had a completely unexpected result. The ropes binding Zara’s wrists did not give way, but the tent pole did. Suddenly realizing her chance, Zara slid her hands to the bottom of the pole and pulled with all of her strength. The bottom of the pole slid sideways, and as she kept on pulling, collapsed the tent around her. The result was instant chaos as the heavy canvas came down, enveloping everyone. Even worse it contacted the numerous torches that had illuminated the tent and almost immediately it burst into flame. There were screams of terror from the people trapped in the tent and even louder screams from the strange animal as it heaved itself against the tent in a terrified attempt to escape. The fabric tore, releasing the animal into the night, and Zara was right behind it. Outside it was chaos, with everyone running this way and that. Some were trying to rescue the people still in the tent, but already the flames were so hot that few could get close to it. No one paid any attention to Zara and she dashed for the edge of the encampment. On the way she passed a zebra hide set out to dry and she snagged it along with a knife someone had dropped. Then she headed in among the trees. In a few seconds she was among the higher branches of a forest giant. There was enough light from the burning tent that she took a few minutes to modify the zebra so that it would fit her. Then she settled down to sleep.