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Restraining Order

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Lean, firm curves dimpled by old scars: certain marks distinguished a Djose Knight even when out of uniform.

Elma flinched. Hands entangled in her bridle's reins jerked taut.

The riding crop had already painted a pink lattice on blooming skin. The last stripe welled with blood.

Lucil smiled, lips firm and tight. "I brought potions. Continue?"

Nodding, Elma's cheeks reddened as much as those being flogged.

The crop struck with precise, hard slaps, quickening to a gallop.

They rode until both forgot who was driver, who driven. Lucil's voice broke, sobbed.

A heavy silence. Then: "Unbind me, Elma."

"Ma'am!"

Order restored.