The New York Times
Fertile Heir to Iero Empire to Marry Howard Protégée
“Oh, Frankie, it’s gorgeous. You are a lucky, lucky bastard. I wish my mother would find me a match that would buy me rock that huge!”
Frank beams down at his ring, the huge diamond glinting in the low light of the bar him and his best friend Jamia are currently sat in. Every tiny movement he makes with his left hand sends shards of light dancing over Jamia’s delicate features and her envious eyes. Unused to the weight on his hand, he lifts his martini glass to his lips, and revels in the envy of the fertiles scattered around the bar.
He is a lucky, lucky boy, and he knows it. He smiles up at Jamia, and sighs happily.
“I know – I’m so excited! Father says the wedding is going to be huge, and that the papers will just eat it up – ”
“Which they’d do anyway, Frankie, your family is one of the largest in fucking New York, and you’re their only child and you’re late getting married” Jamia interrupts matter-of-factly, waving her hand towards the bartender once. He leaps forward, and hurries to refill their glasses; a martini for Frank, and a long island iced tea for Jamia.
Frank smiles at Jamia’s statement, knowing the truth behind her words. His family is one of the largest, and most powerful, families in New York City. The political clout of his father coupled with the socialite upbringing of his mother makes their entire family a regular staple in the papers, and with that comes the luxury of huge diamond rings from suitors and the constant attention of barmen at extravagant bars.
There’s a sudden flurry of people at the entrance of the bar, accompanied with the flash of camera bulbs that highlights the arrival of Frank and Jamia’s peers. Dubbed the “Fertile Pack” in the papers, the gaggle of fertiles’ that swarm the bar are the fertile children of New York’s richest; spoiled brats that think the city is their playground.
When they catch sight of Frank at the bar, they rush over, and start to grab at his hand and exclaim excitedly.
“Let’s see the ring!”
“You’ve got to have me as a packmaid at your wedding!”
Frank lights up at the topic of his upcoming wedding, his cheeks flushing as his friends continue to exclaim over his ring and fiancé. Questions ring in his ears, until one from a delicate fertile from the Stumph family, Patrick, asks the all-important one.
“So, how did he propose?”
All at once, every one of the fertiles’ clustered by the bar turn once again to Frank. Their eyes are lit up, waiting for what they are sure will be a deeply romantic and extravagant story. Frank looks down at his ring and smiles to himself. On seeing his expression, Patrick, Jamia and the rest of the fertiles begin to jab him for the details.
“Okay, okay!” Frank finally gives in to his friends teasing taunts, “I’ll tell you, Jesus!”
He leans back in his seat, running the index finger of his left hand around the rim of his empty martini glass, treating all of his expectant friends to another flash of his magnificent ring.
“Frankie, I swear to fucking god, if you don’t tell us the story this second, you won’t have a ring finger to wear that rock on!”
At the frankly threatening look in Jamia’s eyes, Frank swallows and glances around his friends – who all look as impatient as Jamia. He grins up at them all.
“Right, okay. So, my father had called me into his office last week, and told me that a match had been made for me, but that I of course had the option to turn this suitor down,” he started.
“Like you’ve turned down every last dom who has tried to wed and bed you” interjected Hayley, another member of the Pack, the only child of the William’s family.
“Yes, thanks Hayley. Do you want to hear the story or not?!” Jamia hissed. Frank waited for them to be finished before he tilted his head to the side and smiled smugly up at Hayley.
“Yeah, Hayley, do you want to hear the story or not?” At this, the rest of the Pack glares at Hayley, before tripping over their words to beg Frank to continue with his story. Basking in the attention, Frank waits until they sound desperate enough before he opens his mouth again, relishing the way that his friends fall silent at the sight.
“Before I was so rudely interrupted… I was told I had the option to turn his suitor down, but I was also told that they were really running out of options for me to be – how did you put it, Hayley? – ah, yes, wed and bed. So, I agreed to take this suitor as my new dom, and mother and father were most pleased.”
Frank pauses for effect, looking at the softly lit faces of his friends.
“I met him for the first time in Central Park, where I had been accompanied by my mother, and he had a wonderful horse and carriage waiting for me and a rider dressed in his house colours. He helped me up onto the carriage and kissed me on the cheek before taking me on a tour of Central Park. After a while of this, where we conversed about the most important thing – me – he took me to his home.”
“And?” Jamia demanded impatiently.
“And there, he had rose petals strewn about the floor, there was a concert violinist serenading me and champagne in a glass with diamonds at the bottom. And he led me through the foyer, handing me the champagne as he did so, and we went into his back garden.”
Frank smiles to himself at the memory.
“And there, under a huge canopy of flowers, he took my hand and looked right into my eyes. He got down on one knee, and… asked me the question.”
“Like he thought you were going to say no after you’d told your parents you’d take him on as your suitor!”
Frank’s smile dissolves from his face as he scans the faces in the gaggle surrounding him, trying to find who ruined his story with that barbed comment. Unable to pinpoint which of his posse it was, he let it go, and picks up his sadly empty glass and waves it at the bartender.
Frank lets himself settle back into his good mood as he downs another martini. He’s overrun with compliments, lighting up at the continued attention of his friends, how his parents are planning the wedding as they speak, how excited he is for the wedding and all the attention it’ll bring to their families, how glorious it is that he’ll soon be mated and wed and bred. The light-hearted chatter lingers on the topic of Frank’s wedding for a good half hour, as it’s the most current news any of the Pack has to talk about. The bartender is called over more and more frequently to the lavish group, as demands for more cocktails; champagne and wine become louder and more slurred.
Eventually, a fertile by the name of Andy suggests that they continue their celebrations back at his family’s suite at the nearby Pavilion Hotel, and not in full sight of the inhabitants of the bar and the lingering paparazzi.
Frank wakes up the next morning on a plush sofa. His head is pounding beyond belief and he feels woozy. He struggles to push himself into a sitting position, cursing his weakened limbs. He finally heaves himself up and sits properly on the sofa and glances around the room.
There’s bottles everywhere, half of them still full and tipped on their sides, dripping liquor onto the wool carpet. There’s fertiles everywhere, passed out on the floor, on the bed, on the sideboards.
Frank notes, not without relief, that there are no doms present.
He doesn’t need the scandal, to be honest. If there were doms at the impromptu party they’d had here last night, Frank’s upcoming marriage might be smeared in the papers. They could have branded Frank a slut, a cock hungry hussy that had no respect for his brand new fiancé, or his family. Doms in a room full of unbred and unaccompanied fertiles just spelt trouble. As far as the doms were concerned, fertiles were prey. Unaccompanied fertiles could, worse case scenario, raped by a dom and then end up married to them to avoid scandal of an unwedded fertile bearing children.
Frank shudders at the thought. He’s deeply glad that, no matter how drunk they got, they somehow had enough common sense in their drunken brains to not invite doms.
Movement out of the corner of his eye catches Frank’s attention, and he looks over to see Jamia begin to stir from her position slumped on the carpet.
“Jam. Jam!” he hisses at her, watching her sleepily lift her head towards the noise. She begins to droop again though, and Frank carefully gets up onto his feet. He picks his way across the room to his best friend, and pokes her gently in the side with his shoe. She bats impatiently at him, and tries to roll away.
Frank rolls his eyes, and pokes at her again. When she still refuses to respond, he crouches down next to her and begins to exclaim in her ear. After a while, she’s unable to ignore him any longer. She wakes up properly and lifts her head.
Upon realising where she is, Jamia scrambles up off of the floor, and clutches onto Frank’s arm. She hoists him up with her, and she stares at him with absolute fright in her eyes.
“Frankie, there isn’t any –”
“No, there isn’t any doms here. We’re safe Jam, calm down.” Upon hearing this, Jamia sags in relief. Frank smiles down at her, and begins to steer them and their hangovers out of the room.
They end up at Frank’s apartment, drinking espresso from tiny cups and gingerly attempting to eat the vegetarian breakfast that Frank’s chef, Peter, has made them. The papers are delivered to the building and both Frank and Jamia pore over them as they pour themselves more coffee.
There’s been a recent flare up in the gang activity in the Bronx, where doms fight each other – rather needlessly, as far as Frank and Jamia are concerned – over territory and wealth and access to fertiles. The most interesting part of the papers for the two fertiles surrounded by wealth and comfort is the society pages, where families of a similar echelon to the Iero’s and the Nestor’s fight for column inches. In their minds, this was a much more worthy fight.
This morning, the Iero’s have the most, as the engagement was announced only yesterday. Frank’s parents planned this expertly, knowing there were no upcoming events in the socialite’s diary for another couple of days, making sure that the engagement remained the focal point of conversation in the media. The next event that all the families were expected to attend was the Governor’s Ball in a few days time, and this meant that Jepha could show Frank off on his arm, giving the Iero’s even more space in the papers.
After finishing their breakfast, Jamia and Frank wander into the opulent living room. They plop themselves down on the luxurious brown leather sofa, Jamia immediately curling up and laying her head on the armrest, whilst Frank wriggled around until he was comfortable.
“Turn the TV on for me, Frankie,” Jamia said around her huge yawn.
“You do it, I don’t want to move ever again,”
Both fertiles stare at each other, either end of the huge sofa, before shifting their gaze to the television remote that was sitting on the coffee table – out of either of their reach. Jamia begins to jab at Frank with her fucking pointy toes, and Frank bats his hands at her every time she comes near him. Soon, the both of them are engaging in the laziest fight; Jamia trying to kick at Frank as he tries to fend of her sleepy attacks with swatting motions. After a few minutes of this, Frank grabs a hold of both of Jamia’s feet and ending the ridiculous fight.
“Fucking fine, you loser, I’ll put the TV on” Frank pouts as Jamia cackles. He grabs the remote and the TV lights up. Images of preparation for the Governor’s Ball flicker across the screen, with the blonde newscaster blandly intoning over the upcoming event.
Both Jamia and Frank fall asleep to the sound.
Frank adores having suits tailored for him. For an event as prominent as the Governor’s Ball and with the spotlight currently shining on his engagement, Frank’s mother insisted on having a brand new suit made for him. After all, it would be social suicide to appear in something that the press had seen before.
He winces as the tailor nicks him with a pin, before rolling his eyes as his mother reprimands the tailor for doing so. The suit, it’s been decided, is going to be a deep green – “all the better to bring out your eyes, dear” – with a black waistcoat underneath and a white shirt. As is the current fashion with fertiles, he won’t be wearing any kind of necktie and the top buttons of the shirt will be undone so that everyone can see his purity in the form of his unmarked neck.
Frank’s equal parts excited and nervous for the ball. All his friends and various acquaintances will be there, but it’ll also be the first time he’ll spend any actual time with his betrothed. The proposal was over in a couple of hours – horse carriage ride and all – and the fertile hopes that the dom he’s going to marry won’t be dull, self absorbed or rude. Like all fertiles, all Frank wants is to be swept off his feet and be loved and cherished by his dom forever. But he also knows the reputation of the doms in his kind of social circle.
They’re all obsessed with their businesses, and their money. But if he wants to carry on living as luxuriously as he’s used to, Frank knows that marrying a dom as powerful as Jeph is the only way to go.
And yet. There’s another side to doms with that much money and power, and Frank knows it can be dark.
He’s seen the bruises that wrap around the throat of other fertiles married to highly prolific doms, the way they flinch whenever their dom is nearby. He’s heard ghost stories of fertiles wed and bed simply for the heirs, whilst the dom carries out affair after affair and leaves the fertile to languish alone in their homes.
He knows there are downsides to waiting so long to marry, and that is that his father has less time and less inclination to observe each dom that came forward with a proposal to ensure that they would look after his fertile child.
The tailor clearing his throat brings him abruptly out of his thoughts.
“All done! If you’d like to return in approximately 2 days, I’ll have the suit ready and we’ll have a final fitting before the ball itself! If that’s alright with you, madam?”
Frank’s mother inclines her head graciously.
“Come, Frank, we have lots to arrange over the next couple of days”.
Frank slips the dark green jacket over his toned shoulders, and examines himself in the mirror. His eye’s trip over his dark messy hair, his large hazel eyes, colourful tattoo’s and pale skin. He knows that he’s the epitome of fertile beauty; small, slight, with large eyes and pale skin – perfect for marking. The suit he’s wearing enhances all of this and Frank knows the photographers will absolutely lap up his appearance.
A large exhale of air from the doorway behind him tells him that his fiancé agrees. Frank turns indulgently towards his betrothed; revelling in the lustful gaze the dom lavishes him with.
“My god, Frank” Jepha breathes, “you’re gorgeous. How on earth are you mine?”
Frank tilts his head back, considering the dom, letting a smirk curl at the corners of his mouth at the same time.
“Not yours just yet, darling.”
“Technicalities” Jepha says, growling. The dom steps into the room, and reaches his hand out to caress Frank’s smooth cheek. He loves the feel of his fertile’s soft flesh. He runs his thumb over Frank’s lips and shudders when Frank darts his tongue out and sucks the tip of Jepha’s thumb into his mouth.
Frank is pushed up against the large mirror that he had previously been admiring himself in, and then Jepha’s kissing him, not asking, just taking, and Frank feels a thrill run through him as his dom’s hands slide purposely down his sides and settle at his waist. His own arms come up to cup Jepha’s shoulders and clutch the dark suit jacket he’s wearing. Jepha growls in approval, pushing his thigh between Frank’s legs as he does so.
Frank only pushes him away when Jepha begins to nose down his throat, and comes dangerously close to biting him.
Jepha pushes back into the hollow of Frank’s throat, causing Frank to shove him.
“I said no!”
“Frank, babe, come on. We’re going to be married in a few weeks, and everyone knows you’re already mine. Biting you just makes it official,”
“I don’t know whether you remember or not, but we are going to be in front of thousands of cameras in just a couple of hours! I’m not having my reputation marred by anyone, future husband or not – do you know what society thinks of fertiles that wear bite marks on their throats before they’re married?!”
Jepha is quietly whining under his breath but Frank pushes on.
Jepha looks up, sighing.
“No, babe, I don’t. What does society think of fertiles that wear bite marks on their throats before they’re married?”
Frank narrows his eyes at the sarcasm in his dom’s response. “They think they’re sluts and whores and that they’re not worth a fucking damn, that’s what. And the backlash is even worse if the fertile is commonly in the fucking papers, like I am, Jeph! Betrothed or fucking not, you are not fucking going anywhere near my fucking neck until the night of our fucking wedding!” Frank’s voice is escalating, becoming near hysterical.
Jepha’s demeanour changes. His voice becomes soothing and he gently puts a hand on his fertile’s arm, which Frank bats away with barely restrained violence.
Frank continues to bat Jepha’s attempts to soothe him away; glaring out of the window with tears in his eyes.
“Frank. Frankie, babe, I’m sorry. Alright? I didn’t know it meant that much to you.”
“Well, you should have fucking asked” Frank says in retort. “Before you went for my neck,”
A knock on the mahogany doors to Frank’s suite interrupts the argument.
“Sirs? Mr and Mrs Frank Iero the Second request your presence downstairs in exactly five minutes” the fertile at the doors bows to Jepha first, then Frank.
“Thank you” Jepha replies, and the fertile is dismissed. He takes a handkerchief out of his pocket and offers it to Frank, who snatches it up and dabs at his eyes with it.
“Does this mean I’m forgiven?”
Frank sniffles into the hanky for a moment. The he straightens up, stiffly hands the handkerchief back, and tosses his hair.
“No. But we don’t have the time to fight about it now, and I refuse to have red eyes in front of the paparazzi. Let’s go.”
With that, Frank sweeps out of the room, leaving Jepha to lock the suite behind him.