Ranee finally passed out. Being naked and cold could no longer keep her awake. Sucat slept in his bed, mumbling about his plans for the following day, but Ranee did not here any of his plans.
When the sun shone into the bedchamber’s windows, Sucat woke, got out of bed and stood naked over his wife’s body. He began stroking himself again and ejaculated on her, waking her from her exhausted sleep when his semen hit her skin. She cried out involuntarily, trying to shield her face from him but unable to move. He laughed at her, overjoyed by the power he held over her.
He left her laying on the floor and called for Jyll to prepare a bath for him. He would look his best today, wearing his best cloths. He was lord of this manor and he would let everyone know by appearance and deed. While hot water was brought up to his bathing room next to his bedchamber he went and relieved himself. When he came back into his sleeping chamber he found Jyll pinching and poking at Ranee as if she were a bug.
Sucat slapped Jyll away from his wife. Only he would determine how Ranee was tortured and he would not allow Jyll to indulged herself without his say so.
“You are not to take it upon yourself to touch my wife,” said Sucat. “Never forget that she is my wife and well above you. You may only touch her by my permission. Get out and bring me my food that I may break my fast.”
Jyll scrambled out of his way as he try to slap her again. This was not working out they way she had planned and the way he had promised her. As she went down to the kitchens to get Sucat’s food, she mumbled to herself about the things she wanted to do to him to pay him back for all of these slights. If he thought he could get away with this behavior for long, he was sadly mistaken.
She gathered together roast meat and fresh bread with butter, stewed fruit and milk laced with honey. She put these things on a tray and took it upstairs to Sucat’s bedchamber. By the time she got back upstairs, she had calmed her appearance and made her plans. Sucat would show her respect when she was done with him.
She placed the tray on a table and went to check on his bath. The tub was almost full. Sucat sat at his table and ate the food Jyll had brought. He would need to do something about her soon. She was forgetting her place in the world and becoming dangerous. Knowing her she was plotting revenge even now. When Hyd and Eadward were dead by the end of this day, and he was sure he had Ranee subdued, he would kill Jyll. He thought he would strangle her while they were having sex. He liked the idea of killing the whore as she came, spilling his seed into her dead body.
Things were coming together for him. He looked at his wife. Her skin seemed to have a blue tinge to it. That could be from the many bruises she had or it could be because she was cold, He did not want her dying just yet so he called to Jyll to bring a blanket and cover Ranee up. Now that he had decided how to kill Jyll, he was amused by making her do things for Ranee. He would play with Jyll’s mind this day, keeping her off guard, alternately making her wait on Ranee and then allowing her to abuse his wife for his pleasure.
He finished eating and went in to his bath. As he walked by her, he saw that Ranee had her eyes closed, probably sleeping again now that she was warmer. He left her alone in his room knowing she was tied securely to his bed. He took a long bath. He had Jyll wait on him, having her wash his back and hair. She tried to entice him but her ignored her, knowing it would further throw her off balance and infuriate her more. This was a dangerous game he played with her but he knew she would not live to see another day so he could afford to live on the edge where she was concerned.
When he was clean, he stepped out of the tub, had Jyll dry him with soft cloths and put a long tunic over his body. Many times she tried rubbing herself on him and he was tempted to take her but he was saving himself for something else. He told Jyll to have his tub emptied and refilled with hot water for Ranee. He told her to make sure to put lavender and rose petals in the water. He wanted his wife to smelled good and he wanted to ease her aching body so she was ready for the rest of the day’s festivities. He also told Jyll to have more food brought up, this time for Ranee to eat.
He went into his bedchamber and gently woke Ranee up. He untied her feet and help her to stand. She was weak and she had to lean on him to walk. She tried not to touch him but she could not help herself. Sucat took her to his chair and sat her down. Her hands were still tied behind her back. He made sure the blanket was still wrapped around her. He put more wood on the fire himself, poking at it so the flames rose and warmed Ranee up. He wanted for her to get more comfortable and feel better so the things to come would cause her more pain. Jyll came into the room with the tray of food. He had her put it on the table and told her to leave and close the door behind her. She scowled at him but he did not notice. He only had eyes for Ranee. He brought another chair next to her and move the little table so it was near by.
He tried to feed her but she turned away. He wanted to force her or hit her but he controlled himself. He wanted her to give in to him right now.
“You must eat,” he said. “The food is good and I know you are hungry. I will not allow you to starve to death. Besides you are too healthy for that. Eat while you can. You will need your strength. Who knows, there may come an opportunity for you to escape my clutches. I doubt it but one never knows about these things.” He knew she would take his bait, hope always being there when one started to feel a little better.
She finally accepted the food and drink he gave her. He fed her choice bits of meat. The bread he gave her had lots of melting butter on it. He fed her slowly so she did not get sick. She could not eat much after going hungry for so long but she had some of everything and he would give her more later. He gave her ale to drink. She asked for water but the ale would make her slightly drunk and easier to handle.
By the time he was done feeding her, Jyll told him the bath was refilled. Sucat called up guards around the doors. He untied Ranee’s hands and took the noose from her neck. Her skin was in bad shaped all over her body and she had many bruises. He was tempted to stay and bathe her himself he was so excited by her injuries. But he kept a couple of women there to do the job gently. He made Jyll leave knowing she would never be able to resist hurting Ranee further. He made himself leave, too. And as hard as it was for him, he did not even touch Ranee before he left. He would save everything he had for her for later.
He made sure the guards understood the pain they would receive if they allowed Ranee to escape and then he went away to check on his other prisoners. He could let some of his pent up frustrations out on them.
The women Sucat had left to help Ranee bathe would not look at her or talk to her. They could not believe the way she looked and they did not want to embarrass her further by staring at her body. They went about the room with their heads bowed. They let her take care of herself.
Ranee dropped the dirty blanket on the floor. She could not look at herself either. If she saw her body and went had been done to it she thought she would begin crying and never stop. She needed to take every opportunity to regain what strength she could. Sucat was right and she needed to take what she could. She knew why he said it but he was right none the less.
She would take what she was given in an effort to escape or die trying. She would not continue to live as his slave. She was not her mother. She would fight to escape with whatever strength she had left. If she could not escape soon she would find and way to kill herself or have someone else do it for her.
She stepped into the tub. The water burned her open wounds. But when she got used to the water the herbs soothed her cuts and bruises. She sank down under the water getting all of her wet including her hair. When she came back up the women Sucat had left to tend her were there with soft. The lathered up her hair and gently cleaned it. Their hands were soft and their touch light. They tried to untangle her hair as the cleaned it. She sank under the water again to rinse out the soap. When she cam back up again one of the women handed her a soft cloth with lavender soap on it. She washed her body herself feeling where all of the cuts and bruises were. She was tired she wanted to give up but she could not bring herself to do it just yet. When she was done cleaning herself she stood and the women poured severally pitchers of warm clear water over her to rinse off the rest of the soap.
She stepped out of the tub and they toweled her off with large soft cloths. The room had a large fire burning in the hearth. They took her over to it and sat her on a stool. Each woman took up a comb and standing on each side of her, they began coming out her hair. By the time they were done combing her hair was almost dry. Then they stood her up and rubbed warm lavender and rose oil on her skin. When they were done, she felt much better and stronger. They took her back into Sucat’s bedchamber and left her alone. She ate the rest of the food that was left on the table and drank the rest of the ale. Now she was very tired. She waited for someone to come back into the room but she was left alone.
She searched the room for things she could use as weapons. She was sure Sucat had left her alone as another way to torture her. Not knowing what was happening or when he would come back, giving her the false hope of finding a way to escape and it was hard to fight the despair she felt but she could not pass up the opportunity. She might not get another.
She had kept one of the combs from the bathing room. She did not think it would be missed. It was made of bone, the teeth sharp and uneven. It also had a protruding end that was used to part the hair. She could hide it near her and use it as a knife. It was also possible that if someone saw it they might not think of it as a weapon although she doubted that.
She searched the room, memorizing where each thing was that she could use. She did not take any of them as she was sure Sucat knew where each thing was and he would notice right away if something was moved. She thought this because Sucat had left a knife in plan sight in the room. She did not think he was that stupid but she knew he thought her that dumb. So she just marked its position in her mind, along with the ceramic mug and pitcher she could use over someone’s head, the rope she could use to strangle someone and a few other items she thought would make good implements. All she needed now was to remain free to use them and that would be her biggest challenge of all.
She had the room’s layout memorized. Now she need some rest to get back some strength. She crawled into the bed, getting under the soft down blankets, her comb under her head and fell asleep.