I wrote this story in 2000, long before I imagined it as the first in a series. It's a story of cannibalism, sex, consensual dismemberment, a nice man, some very mean men, a very sweet young woman whose plans get off the track, and love.

Home for the Holidays

by Cardaniel


Randy hadn't given a second thought to going down to the frat house kitchen in his boxers and undershirt. His experience had taught him to expect no one else there at 7 a.m., least of all a girl. He gasped and pulled up short at the entrance. She looked around at the sound of the gasp. "Oh, hi! What are you doing up? Pull an all-nighter?"

It was hard for her to look in his direction, but she flashed a sweet smile at him, mindless of the strain. She looked about 19, a slender girl with a very open, innocent face and smooth, darkly-tanned skin. She was lying naked on her back, on a wooden carving table, secured to it by thick padlocked chains around her neck and waist. There was a leather pad under the back of her head, the only concession to creature comforts, and her blonde hair spread out on either side of it. Her hands and feet were missing and presumably eaten. Her right arm was longer than the left, ending in a stump near where her wrist had been, while the left ended just below her elbow. She still had both knees as well, though the lengths of her shins were similarly mismatched. There were two tubes dangling in front of her mouth, for feeding -- one was clear, probably water, and one had a darker fluid. A waste-drainage hole was directly below her crotch.

She was still smiling at him. "What's your name? Bet you're a freshman, aren't you?"

He tried to smile back and conquer the paralysis that always hit him in the presence of a pretty girl. "Uhhh, I'm Randy. Mason. How... long have you been here?"

"A couple days. Guess I'll last about another few. I think I must be Thanksgiving dinner, if there's anything left to cook by then. Anyway, glad to meet you, Randy. I'd shake hands but..." She shrugged and giggled, waving her stump at him. "Anyway, I'm Kristi."

"You've been in here this whole time? In the kitchen, like... this?"

"Yeah, well, my walking-around days are over, aren't they? Whoever's on kitchen duty comes and turns me once a day. I guess I'll be in here till I'm roasted, or else boiled, they didn't say yet how they're going to do it. Not really my first choice of where I wanted to end up, but it could be worse, I guess."

"How did you end up here?" He was starting to forget he was talking to a girl. She had an openness that made her easy to talk to.

"Well, see, I got graded B in my draft physical. I'd really been hoping for an A, but they said I had too little body fat. Just missed it by half a percent. I'd wanted SO much to be a grade A roaster, and go out in a big feast. I don't want my head just chopped off and not even know who's gonna be eating me. I thought about it a long time, and finally got up the nerve to try a little free market. Came down to the campus, stripped naked and started walking around. I was looking for the Faculty Club. I heard they treat their girls like total princesses. You know, fatten you up with all kinds of sweets -- and you get lots of sex, and those older guys know how to do it! And then they roast you alive at this big banquet. It's so elegant!" She smiled ruefully. "I guess I thought it would be just that easy, they'd see me walking by the Club and take me in. I asked these two big football types where it was. One of them just clamped his arms around me and they dragged me in here."

"I don't think the Faculty Club takes free market girls, anyway. They just go buy them at the state butchery. They've got plenty of money."

"Oh, I know, I just had this dream, I'd walk up to the door and they'd welcome me in, they'd roll out the red carpet -- it's stupid, I know." Her eyes pleaded with him for a sign that it could have happened. "They must go free market sometimes, the old goats. Just because you're rich doesn't mean you turn down a freebie."

"Look, if you missed grade A roaster by half a percent, why can't you just fatten up for a week and go get graded again?"

"Yeah, I wish! Don't you know there's a three-year wait for regrades? It doesn't just take a second, they put you through the whole exam again, and they have a hard enough time keeping up with the new ones."

"But three years isn't much! You don't know you would have got drafted in that time. Lots of girls don't get drafted right away."

"Three years is a lot to me! And the older you get the harder it is to stay up with the standards. Just getting older makes your grade go down, you know. I didn't want to get drafted as a B. Go in, they chop off your head and hang you by the feet, let the blood drain out, and you go in the meat freezer till you're bought by God knows who. I just wanted to give this a try..." She rolled her eyes. "And see, this is just my luck. Your frat boys aren't too bad, but this isn't the Faculty Club."

He smiled. "No, I guess not."

"So why are you here so early anyway? Everybody else seems to stay up till about two or three and then crash."

He shrugged. "I'm a morning person. Another way I don't fit in here."

"You don't like it here?"

"It's not so much about liking it, I'm just... out of place. I'm on scholarship, you know... well, of course, you couldn't know that, but I am. Nobody in my family ever went to college before. We don't have much money... I don't know why the frat picked me. I guess they wanted somebody here who could tell them how to do their homework."

She smiled. "Oh, you're a brain, huh?"

"Well..." He grinned shyly and reddened. "Maybe." He looked at his watch. "Oh! And I've got to get to class, too."

She lifted her arm. "You want a little breakfast? The laser knife is right there, just cut an inch or so off the end and microwave it. It's okay, I don't mind."

He shook his head. "Thanks, but no. I'll just grab a candy bar out of the machine."

"You should eat better than that. You need protein."

"I'll be okay. I'll get some meat for dinner tonight. Not you, probably, If they're saving you for Thanksgiving."

"Hope I get there. Most guys who come in slice off a piece."

"Well, tomorrow, maybe. See you later, Kristi?"

"I'll be here." She waved her stump at him and rested back against the padding, smiling. She took a sip from the clear feeding tube, enjoying the sweet taste of sugar-water. She hoped she wouldn't get tired of it. She didn't have much choice.


He smiled as he reached the kitchen, his heart pounding. He had his jeans on this time. He stopped just short of the door, hearing a piddling sound, knowing it must be her letting go a stream of pee into the waste bucket below the hole in the carving table. When it stopped, he opened the door. She was on her stomach this time, still chained to the table at her neck and waist, the feeding tubes lowered to accomodate her position. Her head turned to look in in his direction as he came in. She smiled. "Hi, Randy!"

Looking her over, he saw her left arm no longer went to the elbow. At some point last night they had started in on the fleshier upper arm, and would probably finish it before going back to the other forearm. Her right knee was gone too.

"Hi, Kristi. How you feeling?"

She put out her left arm and examined it. "Not as much of me here, but I'm doing okay. Couple of energetic guys fucked me last night, so I'm a little sore, but I'll live. Awhile." She giggled. "Oh, got a book? What is it?"

He grinned, tried to hide it, realized it was too late. "Oh, it's... well, I like science fiction. Guys here think it's nerdy."

"What's the story? Good one?"

"Yeah, kind of interesting."

"Tell me what it's about."

"Well, it's not so much science, this one, but speculative... You know, one thing they do pretty often in sci-fi is imagine what if the world was different. In this one, it's trying to figure out what a world would be like with an equal number of men and women being born, if that could happen."

"I'll tell you one thing, they'd run out of women pretty quick."

He smiled. "Not if they don't eat them. See, that's a consequence. That's what they do, they try to start from a premise and figure out what the consequences would be."

"But... so what do they eat?"

"Well, anything else, fruits, vegetables, other animals, same kind of stuff we eat, just not any women."

"But those are all lower life forms! You can't eat just only lower forms. You don't get all the what-do-you-call-its you need to live!"

"Gynemones, you mean? Well, scientists think we might be able to get by on lower life forms exclusively. Nobody wants to try it really long-term. Except there was that religious sect..."

She snorted. "Yeah, those assholes. Saying women are evil and unclean and shouldn't be eaten. I hope they die of malnutrition."

"You didn't hear? Their compound burned down last week. They're all toast now."

"Doesn't surprise me. Government probably did it. That's the other thing in this story of yours -- how's the government supposed to survive, without selling women for food? Where do they get their money from?"

"The government just collects part of everybody's paycheck. Like you earn a hundred dollars, say, and your boss gives you ninety and sends ten to the government."

"And people just let them?? Why??"

"They kind of have to. They throw you in jail if you don't."

She shook her head. "That just seems lame, to me. How could a system get going where you have to force people to follow it? In the real world, it's a fair exchange. The government gets money and people get food. Nobody has a problem with it. Well, except a few nuts now and then, but that's not like the entire population getting screwed."

"Maybe, but think about it this way -- wouldn't you want to live in a world where you knew you could get married and raise a family, and grow old with somebody you love?"

She smiled. "You're a hopeless romantic, Randy. Life isn't like that. Things are the way they are, they can't be some other way. Raising a family isn't going to happen for me. When I die -- in just a few days, I guess -- I'll know my flesh helped other people survive. You're here today because women fed you, and all of your ancestors. Oh, some of these guys here," she waved her right wrist-stump to indicate the frat house, "Are jerks, but they're people, and it's neat that I get to see who I'm feeding -- even get to watch them eat me. Everybody has to eat women. It's a noble calling, kind of..." She stopped suddenly, looking embarrassed, and grinned at him. "Okay, you caught me. I'm a romantic too. In my own way."

"Okay, but if the world was different, and you didn't have to be eaten... imagine the things you could do with your life. What would you want to do?"

"I... I don't know, I just never even thought about it. I know a lot of women don't get drafted when they're young, and they can get married and have kids and stay out of the butchery until they hit 45 and have to go in, but that's no way to go. Nobody really wants you when you're 45, and you know the ones that turn themselves in at the end just end up as chunks in cans of stew. I just felt I could do something... you know, higher than that. I just always dreamed about being the main course at a big fancy dinner, with all these fancy people watching me roasting alive, and it's making them so hungry their stomachs are growling and they can't wait to taste me... It really threw me for a loop when I didn't make A. But so... if I didn't have to be eaten at all? In that world, where they didn't need me for that?... hmmm." She looked up towards him, her neck straining a little with the effort. "I just don't think I'd like that world. Like, what would be my purpose in life, then? What would I be there for? Oh, don't frown like that, Randy!" She grinned at him. "I'll think about it, okay? Maybe I'll come up with something."

He nodded and smiled. "Deal. Do you..." He stopped, hearing footsteps above him, knowing someone else was up... maybe just headed for the bathroom to puke up last night's beer, but if it was somebody on his way down for some breakfast Randy would lose his one-on-one with Kristi. "I'm gonna go get some homework done. Talk to you later, okay?"

She looked at him sternly. "You didn't eat anything!"

"It's okay, I'm not a big breakfast person."

"Randy, when's the last time you had some girl-meat?"

"Wednesday, at dinner. Really, I'm okay." He laughed. "You're like my mom."

"You need a mom here. I don't know if you're taking care of yourself."

"She sent you here, didn't she? She's sneaky like that." He laughed again. "I promise I'm okay, Kristi. I'll talk to you later."

"Okay. I don't have any plans." She waved her stump at him. "Take care of yourself."

"I will. You too." She laughed at that, and smiled at him as he backed out the door.


He listened at the door before entering, not wanting to catch her relieving herself. He opened the door slightly, peeked in, and caught his breath. Dead? No, he saw with relief her chest was rising and falling slowly. He pushed the door the rest of the way open. The stink of beer hit him flush in the face.

She was on her back today. He examined her extremities first and bit his lip. She'd lost so much in one day! Her left arm was totally gone now, nonexistent beyond her shoulder, and her right leg also, the laser having cut off the last bit of it flush with her hip, just missing her pussy. Her other arm and leg were shorter too, the left leg ending just below her knee, the right arm a couple of inches past the elbow. Her flowing blonde hair was disheveled. There was a thick glaze of what must have been semen around her pussy lips and her bush, and another ring of it around her mouth. She had a few light cuts and bruises on her face, stomach, and breasts.

Anger welled up inside him. How could they treat her like that? This is a delicate flower, guys, not a punching bag in the gym. He nudged her right shoulder softly, whispering her name. In a moment she flinched away from his touch, then opened her eyes and saw him. Her face lit up, tears forming at the corners of her eyes. "Oh, Randy... I'm sorry, I'm kind of a mess this morning."

"Kristi, what happened?"

"Well, I guess it must have been about midnight." She licked her lips, wrinkling her nose at the stale semen taste. "Bunch of guys and their dates came in from the basketball game. They had the munchies, and a couple of them were kind of horny, and... you know, like they say, one thing led to another."

"Are you okay? Does it hurt anywhere... Let me clean some of that." He went to the sink to wet a paper towel, as her giggle ended with a sharp intake of breath and a groan.

"Kind of hurts everywhere. Just sore, I don't think anything's broken. They just got over-exuberant. They all had to do me, of course, and then a couple of them had their dates lick me or sit on my face, and then they got excited and most of them did me again. All while they were slicing off parts and microwaving them. Big Kristi-and-beer party." She winced again as he started gently wiping the slick mess around her lips with the paper towel.

"Thank you. Do you... you know, have a girlfriend, Randy? Not that I'm applying for the job, I'll be dead by the end of the week. I just think you're a nice person, and some girl would be lucky."

Going to the sink for another paper towel, he shook his head. "No, I've never had a girlfriend. Oh, I mean I've had girls, of course, at parties and stuff like that. But not what you'd call a girlfriend. Do you want me to wipe between your legs?"

"See, that's what I mean. How many guys would ask? You're just naturally polite. And yes, please, I feel really messy in there." She closed her eyes and shivered as he carefully wiped off the residue of excessive male ardor. A lot of it was anchored in her pubic hair, and he made sure to get every trace he could see.

"Down a little lower too, okay? This diet they've got me on is making it all liquid, so there's no globs, but I haven't been able to wipe for four days, and it's well.... yeah, there, that feels nicer."

Randy dropped the now-brown towel down the waste hole. "Are you going to be okay? I was going over to the library to study, but I know you've had a long night, and I'll stay if you need me to."

"No, I'm fine, Randy. It was rough, but it's over now. Really, they've got to treat me right. I'm Thanksgiving dinner! They won't want me all bruised up. I don't think they can eat much more of me before then either. I'll be fine, you go."

"Okay." He smiled and brushed a stray hair back from her forehead. "I'll see you tomorrow, okay?"

"I'll check my calendar." She smiled at him. She could hear footsteps above, and knew their time alone was done in any case. "Take care. Get a lot of studying done!"

He grinned. "I will." Lowering the feeding tubes to her mouth, he backed out the door, still smiling.


She was on her stomach again. The sunlight streaming in the windows told her what time it was, and she was eagerly watching for him. She worried when he didn't show up right away, but refused to let it dent her mood. When the door opened at last, she called out gaily, "Randy! Guess what!"

There was still less of her left today: she was waving the stump of her right arm excitedly, trying to prop herself on it so she could face him a little more fully. It no longer had an elbow, and her left leg ended several inches above where her knee had been. He squatted next to the carving table so she could look at him without straining herself.

"The Faculty Club sent over a butler to claim you?"

"Almost as good. I really wasn't sure before, just hoping, but I know I'm gonna be Thanksgiving dinner!"

"They told you?"

"Well, not in so many words, no. But last night one guy wanted to cut off my breast, and the other guy with him says 'No, you can't, President's orders. Nothing but the arms and legs.' So I know they're saving me for something big, and what else could it be?"

"Yeah, I guess that's it. God knows they never tell me anything. So you really want to be the main course, huh?"

She looked at him in surprise. "Well yeah. A girl can't have a better ending. You know how it is at those big banquets... well, I know, you've never had a girl's point of view. It's just such an honor, you feel so wanted, so important. It's the ultimate show of respect for a woman's body. They do everything they can to make sure the girl is still alive when they start roasting her, and they do it in front of everybody, so you see the people who are going to be eating you, and their mouths are watering and... you just fill such a need. When I didn't make grade A I thought I'd lost all that. You'll be there, won't you? I want to see you there while I'm roasting." She saw his uncomfortable look. "Oh, Randy, you're kidding! You're not going to be there?"

"I'm... well... I'm going home for Thanksgiving. It's really important to my parents. I haven't been away from home before, and my mom's getting up there -- she's 40 -- so she knows she won't be around much longer. I ... you know, I really should be there." He seemed almost ready to start crying, which astonished Kristi -- a man crying in front of a woman.

"Hey, no, it's okay Randy, really, I understand. Don't worry about it. You know that's where you need to be. Me, I'll be here -- and I'll miss you, but it'll just be so great! I'll tell you all about it... well, no, I can't do that. But just be thinking about me, okay? I'll be thinking about you. When do you leave?"

"There's no classes Wednesday, so I'm leaving in the morning. I'll stop by and see you before I go, though."

Her face, which had darkened in the last minute, lit up again. "That'd be super. And tomorrow too?"

He grinned. "Of course, tomorrow."

"Hey, is it Monday? It is, isn't it."


"Aren't you supposed to be going to class? I don't want you to get behind."

He looked at his watch. "Oh! Right. But I'll see you later." Without thinking, he leaned over and kissed her. He had never done anything like that without thinking before, but it just seemed natural.

He put his hand down near her as he bent to kiss her, and she rubbed his forearm with her stump. Suddenly she felt wet between her legs. She looked up at him and said huskily, "You better get going."

As usual he backed out the door, looking a little flushed this time. "See you tomorrow." Her eyes stayed on the door long after he had gone.


He paused before opening the kitchen door. He knew he should just forget it, and go on to class. It was just common sense not to get involved with a girl who would be dead in two days. She won't miss me anyway, he thought. She talks to guys all day, most of them a lot better looking than I am.

Oh, hell. He pushed the door open.

He took in the entire scene in a frozen instant of time. She was struggling for breath, nearly strangling on the neck chain. The carving table was tilted forward about thirty degrees, and she was trying to walk herself back up the surface using her shoulder blades and buttocks -- her only means of locomotion now, as the last traces of her arms and legs were gone. She was just a living torso, naked, on her back. The sweat of hours of effort made the surface of the board slick, making it nearly impossible for her to inch back up along it and relieve the pressure on her neck. She was concentrating so hard she didn't see him.

He rushed over and kicked away the trash basket that had been used to prop up the back end of the carving board, holding the board so he could gently lower it back horizontal. "Kristi! What happened?"

She closed her eyes and dragged in breath after breath like a runner after a race, and started trying to talk to him between gasps.

"It was... another... basketball game ... a bunch... of them... came and... finished my... arm and... leg and... sat around talking... and laughing... and fucking me for awhile..."

He hadn't had time to notice the ring of semen around her mouth, a creamy circle with beads of sweat smearing it. "I get the idea. But why... why this? Why did they try to choke you?"

She was breathing a little easier now. "One of the guys... just thought it would be fun. They... propped up the table and... watched me struggle for awhile... while they were groping their dates... and they just started getting all involved with each other... and left."

He felt his fingernails digging into his palms. "Who did it? Could you describe any of them?"

"Oh Randy, please don't go looking for them! I don't want you to get hurt. And it doesn't really matter, does it? I'm okay now, and you know I'm just here to be dinner. And they'd all just think it seemed funny, you getting all upset about how they were treating their food. Please? Just stay with me a little while, okay?"

He took a deep breath and tried to cool down. He got a wetted paper towel from the sink and started cleaning her face. "You need some water? I bet this feeding tube won't get it to you fast enough."

"Oh GOD yes, please. I'm so thirsty!" He filled a glass and tilted her head up so she could drink, feeling the softness of her drenched blonde hair on his palm. Her skin smelled oddly sweet. He realized it came from days of drinking sugar-water.

"I'm just going to let you sip it, don't try to gulp. You'll get as much as you want, don't worry."

"Have you got your book, Randy?"


"That one you had a few days ago. You know, that other world. How do they treat women there?"

He smiled, brushing a few damp strands of hair back from her eyes. "Well, like I said, they don't eat them. I guess... well, the parts I've read, they sort of treat them like their lives meant something. Even if they aren't food. Or maybe because they aren't. They value them for other reasons."

"Do you have it with you?"

He looked toward his backpack. "It's here, yeah."

"Read me some of it, okay? Pick a nice part."


Last time, he thought. I won't see her after today. They'll be eating her tomorrow. She had gotten some of her high spirits back yesterday before he left, talking about what the banquet would probably be like, asking him how many he thought would be there, asking him if the weather had been nice enough that they might roast her outdoors. He had kissed her less self-consciously as he left, and they'd both giggled as she waved her tongue at him, the only parting gesture she could make without arms or legs.

He sighed heavily outside the kitchen door. Okay, Randy, just tell her you're leaving in a few hours, you've really enjoyed knowing her, you hope tomorrow will be everything she's dreamed, blah, blah. She's food, Randy. Stop thinking about her.

He sighed again and pushed the door open.

"Hey, Kristi. I --" His smile froze on his face.

"Who the hell are you? Where's Kristi?"

A pretty dark-haired girl was on the carving block. She was naked, secured the same way Kristi had been, and in full possession of every body part.

She smiled at him. "I'm tomorrow's dinner. Whadja think I was, the Homecoming Queen?"

"Where's Kristi?!"

"Look, it's not like I'd know anybody here, ya know? They just delivered me last night."

His stomach was churning. "So what happened to the girl that was here?"

She rolled her eyes. "What am I now, the Answer Lady?"

He came closer to her, his face tense. "Look, there was another girl here. She was supposed to be dinner. Why did they go get another one? Did they tell you anything about that? Did they say why they were getting another one at the last minute?"

"It wasn't exactly last minute, space-boy. They bought me two weeks ago. Picked me out of the A-cages and put down a deposit. I don't know what you're talking about with some other girl. Maybe you wet-dreamed her."

Oh, God. He'd known it and hadn't told himself. That nagging feeling at the back of his mind that something was funny. Why were they eating parts of her, so that a lot of her meat was already gone before Thanksgiving? How many people could she have fed on what was left of her? If they'd ever intended to cook her at a banquet, they would have wanted all of her. But they had never meant to have Kristi for Thanksgiving, that was what those little voices in his head had been trying to tell him. And it was true. They'd bought this girl long before Kristi had decided to try her luck finding the Faculty Club. They'd wanted Kristi for something else. But what? And where was she?

He bolted out the door, the girl calling after him, "Hey, if I see her I'll tell her you're looking for her." He passed through the big dining room, looking under tables and into supply closets for any sign of Kristi. He ran out onto the porch, as if some ghostly track of her departure might be marked on the still-dewy grass. Back inside then. As he neared the lounge he heard crying, and ran faster.

It was her, sobbing. He stopped short, seeing her. This was it. Here's what they wanted her for.

Kristi was in a rat-ring.

She was on her back, on a circular board about five feet across. It was ringed with rat cages -- if this was a standard model, there would be about twenty rats. Randy could hear them squeaking, rattling the grates of their cages, trying to get at her. They would be hungry, very hungry, by the time they were let go.

Randy had seen films of rat-rings used for the executions of members of that socially deviant cult of women who, unable to accept their ultimate role in life as food, had ingested chemicals that made their flesh unfit for human consumption. It had astonished Randy that any woman could feel that way -- why wouldn't a woman want to be eaten? Aside from those unique cases, it was a social taboo to feed the flesh of a woman to a lower animal. Randy hadn't known rat-rings were ever used purely for entertainment. He realized he probably didn't know a lot of things.

She must have heard his footsteps as he approached -- he could see her cringe. She opened her eyes then, and gasped, "Randy!"

She broke down in wails again. "Randy, don't let them, I can't, I don't want to die this way, please stop them, tell them to stop!"

In spite of the metal mesh dome covering the ring, to keep the rats from escaping the ring and making a meal of spectators, he could see her clearly -- of course the whole point was to see the victim clearly. The spectators would want a good show. And a long one: the wide leather collar she was wearing would protect her neck, and her jugular vein in particular, from immediate assault. She would probably live about twenty minutes after the start of the attack. Naked, without arms or legs... completely defenseless. They had planned this from the moment they took her, feeding her so much sugar water it came out in her sweat, her skin so sweet-smelling the rats would go nuts over her.

"Oh, Randy," she gasped out between sobs, "They're going to execute me like one of those nutcases, like I'm not fit for people to eat, and they'll all be laughing at me while I'm screaming, please, tell them they can't do this, don't let them feed me to rats, this is such a low way to die."

"Kristi, shhhh, when are they going to do it, did they say?"

"At noon!" She almost screamed it. "They put me here last night, and the rats are here, and they haven't fed them and they'll be so hungry! They've been squeaking all night, trying to get me, and I've been waiting for you to come, you have to stop them!"

"I'm getting you out of here. You're coming with me."

"Randy, you'll get in trouble, they'll kick you out, no don't, just tell them to stop!"

"Like they'd listen to me? Anyway, I'm not coming back here. I don't want any part of this place. Kristi, I'll be back in about ten minutes."

"Don't leave me! I don't want to stay in here!"

"Kristi, shhhh, listen. I can't just carry you out of the building. My valise is in my car, all packed. I'll dump the stuff into the back seat and carry you in that. You'll fit in it. You understand? I'll be right back. You just have to be quiet for me, okay? Don't get everybody awake."

Her lip quivering, sniffing to try to clear the snot out of her nose from crying, she nodded.

He trotted out to the parking lot, trying to look calm. A few minutes later he entered the building. He nearly walked into the lounge, but stopped suddenly as he heard voices inside. He looked through the space between the door and the frame.

A couple of frat brothers were moving chairs around, starting to assemble them in a circle around the rat-ring. He could hear Kristi pleading with them, until one of them reached down through the opening at the top of the wire-mesh dome and forced a ring-gag into her mouth, while the other laughed. "There you go, rat-bait. One of the smaller ones oughta be able to fit through that and eat your tongue out. We'll take it out if you stay real quiet while we work in here."

She quieted down immediately, though even from where he stood Randy could see her quivering. One of the two went out through a side door and brought in more chairs, as well as a large cardboard box from which he dumped a roomful of holiday decorations. Randy's heart sank. They'd be in here for a couple of hours, at least... and by that time there would be others. The odds of the room being empty any time before the big noontime show seemed remote.

Randy went up to his room and fretted. He was a champion fretter. It was amazing, he thought, how trivial all his life's previous frets seemed now. He looked at his watch. Eight o'clock. He looked again. 8:01. He suddenly got up and started pawing through his desk drawer, looking for that key.

*        *        *

The quaint old analog clock on the lounge wall read 11:45, and the room was filling up. Some of the frat brothers and their dates were in seats, some were standing around the rat-ring, exchanging stories about great football games and great televised executions they'd seen.

Kristi lay in the ring, the center of attention, conscious of the grins and stares, and the squeaking of the rats which seemed to pierce the increasing hubbub of the room. She looked frantically from the lounge door, where she prayed Randy might somehow appear, to the clock on the wall, to the young man in black pants and black T-shirt who obviously would play the role of the executioner, to rats within her field of vision, to the door, to the clock...

The man in black stepped around the side of a pair of curtains which had been erected, free-standing, behind the ring, to emerge through the curtains moments later with a black mask pulled down over his face. The room quieted.

"Brothers of Omega Tau, we have a solemn duty to perform." One of the pledges in the back row started to crack a joke and was immediately shushed by the older members.

"This former human, this thing whose name will be forgotten by history, has been convicted of trespassing on sacred Omega Tau property, and has been condemned to Lower Consumption. As tradition demands, the condemned shall have one final chance to plead for mercy. Prisoner, can you give the assembled witnesses a reason why you should be spared a shameful death, and why you should not be discarded by the human race, who are disgusted by your sub-human crimes?"

The question was pointless -- especially since they had never removed the gag. She could only whimper pitifully around the metal ring holding her mouth open. She lost control of her bladder and felt a warm stream of piss flowing down between her buttocks. Nudges, whispers, and stifled giggles told her everyone on that side of the room could see it. There seemed to be a sudden smoky smell in the room, supplanting the smell of urine.

"So be it. As the time has arrived, as representative of the House Council I will carry out the sentence." The smoky smell increased, and there were scattered coughs in the back of the room as the executioner's hand reached for the lever that controlled the doors of the rat cages. Someone pointed up at the dark cloud emerging from an overhead vent. The little metal clinking sounds of the cage doors beginning to open was overwhelmed by an ear-splitting alarm.

"SHIT! There's a fire upstairs!" In an instant everyone was on their feet, scrambling for the nearest of the room's three exits. The executioner bellowed "Don't push! There's time! Stop pushing, go out one at a time, there's time to get out!" The frantic scrimmage at the doors abated somewhat. The room emptied in less than sixty seconds -- with the exception of one forgotten, screaming occupant.

*        *        *

Once he reached the highway Randy put the accelerator to the floor, trying to put as much distance as quickly as he could between himself and the campus. Over the roar of the engine he heard Kristi's panicked screams from inside the valise. She had remained quiet as ordered until now, but the emotional weight of her near-death and escape had pulled her to the breaking point. He pulled off onto the shoulder and leaned over the back of the seat to open the snaps on the valise. Her eyes were wide with terror, the pupils black and enormous, and she made animal-like grunts from behind the ring-gag. He unbuckled the straps on the gag.

"Randy! Hold me, just hold me, hold me..."

Amazing himself at the unusual strength his muscles had suddenly acquired, he picked her up out of the valise and pulled her over the back of the seat in one motion, wrapping his arms around her tightly as she buried her head against his shoulder and cried. He stroked her hair and tried to make calming noises, rocking her from side to side slightly, unconsciously treating her as if she were a baby, as her wailing gradually subsided to tiny sobs and then sniffles.

A few motorists honked and waved as they passed, seeing only the commonplace sight of a young man holding a naked girl, not able to see during a quick pass-by that she had no arms or legs.

When she seemed calm enough, he said softly, "We better get going." He felt her nod her head, still pressed against his shoulder, and began to lay her down on the seat next to him.

Her voice still had a slight panicky edge. "Wait!"

"What's wrong?"

"Don't lay me down, okay? I've been laying down for a week. I'll be okay in awhile, I just... could you find a way I could sit up, somehow? I want to feel like I'm a... a passenger, not baggage. Okay?

He examined his seat belt/shoulder harness. "I think the harness would keep you from falling forward if we stopped. I don't know if it could stop you falling sideways, though."

"Let's try it, anyway. See what it feels like before we start moving."

He set her upright on the passenger seat and pulled the seatbelt across her waist. The harness came down across her abbreviated shoulder and between her breasts, joining the seat belt near her left hip. "Okay?"

"I think you're right, I'll fall sideways if we turn." Tears were forming again in her reddened eyes.

"Hold on." He unhooked the belt and harness. Reaching over the back of the seat, he retrieved a thick blanket he'd started taking along during a period when the car's heater had quit working. Folding it into a thick, soft pillow, he placed it in the gap between the front seats so that it bridged the gap. He lifted her up and set her down so her pussy rested on it, her buttocks supported by the seats on either side. "Will that be okay? Can you sit on that?"

"Yeah, it feels okay. But I'll still fall over."

He shook his head, smiling. As he started the engine and put the car in gear, he put his arm around her, near her breasts, and held her against him as he drove back onto the highway.

She leaned her head against him and they rode quietly for a few miles. She broke the silence.

"It got so confusing back there. I don't remember everything. The fire wasn't just a lucky break, was it? You set it."

"There's no fire. It was just a smoke bomb in the vent. I put it together in the chem lab this morning. One of the Chem professors got interested in stuff I was doing a few weeks ago and gave me a key to the lab so I could get in there on weekends."

"I heard you talking to somebody before we got to the car. They didn't suspect anything?"

"Well, you know, there were people milling around all the doors, I couldn't get through without somebody seeing me. One guy laughed and asked me why I'd wasted time saving all my stuff from the fire, how much could it all be worth, and I just told him I was already packed for going home for the weekend. Nobody paid a lot of attention, they were all trying to figure out where the fire was."

"They'll figure it out later, won't they? Somebody will remember you with the big suitcase."

"Maybe, but probably not. I dropped a Zeta Phi pin by the rat-ring. They're all going to think the Zetes set off the smoke bomb and stole you. They'll spend all day arguing with the Zetes about it, and if they ever do get convinced it wasn't them, by that time nobody's going to be thinking about me anymore."

She smiled at him and kissed his neck. "You're going back to school, aren't you? I don't want you to drop out just because of this."

"Yeah, I'll go back. Not to Omega Tau. I'll find a place, don't worry. Might live in my car awhile."

"Promise you'll take care of yourself. I mean it."

He gave her a squeeze. "Don't worry about me. Here's our turn."

He exited the highway onto a small, tree-lined road.

"You live out here?"

"Yeah. Small-town boy."

"It's really pretty... Oh! Is that a lake, over there, through the trees?"

"Yeah, we go fishing there sometimes."

"Do we have time to stop? It's so beautiful here! I want to see it better."

He smiled. "Sure, I didn't tell mom and dad when I'd get in. I wasn't sure."

He pulled off to the side, and the car crunched to a stop on fallen pine needles. He got as close to the trees as he could.

"Let's go over by the lake. See that one really big tree by the water? Carry me over there, I want to sit and look out over the lake. Oh, bring the blanket. It's so warm today! I can't believe it's almost December."

He carried her like a grocery bag -- a very important grocery bag, one he didn't dare drop. When they reached the tree he dropped the blanket and awkwardly tried to spread it with one foot while still holding her.

"That's okay like that. Set me down with my back against the tree so I can sit up."

He put her down and sat next to her, his knees pulled up and his arms wrapped around them. They were far enough from the main highway that traffic sounds were muted, not able to compete with the sigh of wind in the trees, the periodic splashes of fish breaking the surface.


He turned to see her looking at him, her eyes half-closed, her lips parted. Her voice was husky.

"Randy, just kiss me and don't stop. Don't stop for anything. Understand? Make love to me, but don't stop kiss--"

Her last word was cut off by his lips pressed against hers. He loved the soft feel of them. He held the kiss as he fumbled with the zipper on his jeans, eventually managing to shed them and kick them away while maintaining the kiss. He couldn't do anything about his shirt, so he left it on. He did all the touching, the caressing for both of them, gently sliding her down onto her back and laying on top of her. Some time later, hours it seemed, both their bodies shook with waves of orgasm. Still kissing.

*        *        *

He broke the kiss and rolled off her at last. The both laughed as he took his shirt off. "'Bout time," she giggled. He lay next to her, his arm under her shoulders. She turned her head to the side and nuzzled his shoulder for a few minutes before they both dozed off.

*        *        *

He woke first, and jiggled her shoulder gently. "Kristi? Getting late. Sun'll be down in another hour. We better get going."

She smiled at him sleepily. "Wait a minute, okay? Just lay back. I want to do something." She started rocking from side to side.

"What are you trying to do?" He sat up and started to lift her.

"No! Sorry, I didn't mean to yell, but I just want to do this myself. All week I've been under other people's control, and I had to be where they put me and let them do everything they wanted with me. Just lay back and let me do this, okay? You'll like it, I promise." She giggled. "I'm pretty good at it."

He grinned and followed orders, getting hard immediately.

It was all he could do to stop himself from giving her a gentle push to help her, but he understood how important it was to her. She rocked from side to side, trying to turn onto her stomach, pushing off with her buttocks and shoulderblades, grunting with effort, at last, with a gasp of satisfaction balancing on her side, teetering for a moment before continuing her roll, away from him, landing hard on her stomach, her upper hip hitting the ground with a force that made him wince. She rested a moment, then started writhing to get herself turned in his direction, looking a little like a landed fish except for an indefinable grace, an elemental part of her carriage that would never be lost with any number of body parts. She inched closer to his hip in a snake-like undulation that looked so sexy he could feel his erection growing still longer. At last she was able to dig her chin into his hip and use the leverage it gave her drag herself further onto him. She paused for a minute as his erection quivered in anticipation, trying to catch her breath. Then she put her tongue out and licked him gently.

She was right, she was good at it. Her tongue and lips brushed like butterfly wings along every inch of his shaft, bringing out a sparkle of pre-cum before she had reached the head. At last she took the head, just the head, into her mouth, then backed off and licked all around the top of it, bringing an involuntary moan out of him. She teased him with her tongue for a moment longer before finally taking his entire length into her mouth, her tongue flicking against his balls. Her neck muscles stood out with strain as she moved her head up and down, her tongue and lips working together to bring him quickly to the edge, then slowing to let him down slightly before starting again. His hands were in fists, his fingernails digging into his palm in response to the most intense arousal he had ever known. He exploded into her mouth, a jet of warm sticky cum splashing against the back of her throat as she rode his spasms and swallowed it all.

She waited until he seemed to be spent, and at last let his deflating erection fall out of her mouth. She lay her head on his hip, facing him, and smiled, her lips glistening with his cum. He tried to find words, but there weren't any that could describe how wonderful he felt, so he just stroked her hair and smiled back at her.

The sun was a red ball touching the horizon, and she shivered, suddenly, as a late afternoon breeze announced a cold night approaching. Still stroking her hair, he said, "We better get going. Mom still worries about me driving at night."

"Your parents sound very nice. They must be to raise somebody like you. I can't wait to meet them."

"We're only about five minutes away. Let's go." He stood and dressed, and then picked her up, holding her in front of him with both arms. They kissed as he carried her to the car.

*        *        *

He gave her a squeeze as he carried her onto the porch. Using both arms to steady her, he banged on the door with his elbow. "It's me! I can't get my key out, I've got my hands full!"

Warm light streamed out onto the porch as Randy's mother opened the door, her husband standing behind her. "Randy? What's this?"

He lifted her a few inches higher. "Mom? Dad? This is Thanksgiving dinner!" He smiled as he heard Kristi's tiny inhale of surprise.

His mother looked delighted. "Well, I just started the turkey defrosting, but I guess we could make a nice stew out of her."

Randy shook his head. "Forget the turkey, mom. We can save it for another time. She's a Grade A roaster, and she's going to be the main course -- after we roast her alive. She's going to get the full Grade A treatment."

His mother hesitated only a moment, hearing an authority in his voice that was unfamiliar but welcome. "Okay, let me get the turkey back in the freezer, and then you can tell me all about it."

His father said, "Looks like she's short enough, she'll fit over the barbecue. Let me get that spit out of the attic."

As his parents left the room, Kristi turned to Randy, her eyes shining with tears. In a whisper he could barely hear, she said "Thank you, so much. SO much!" She kissed him.

"We'll make it everything you imagined."

"While your dad's basting me, you can spray my head with water so my hair won't catch on fire. Okay? And stand in front of me as much as you can. I want the last thing I see to be you."

He returned her kiss. "Count on it."