Chapter 3 – Picture Book
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POV: Juliana Von Wickten

As Bartolt led me down the hallway, I heard the distinct purring of a catgirl, accompanied by the occasional mew. A warm feeling settled in my chest. It must have worked. After my last demihuman slave died, I decided it was time to acquire a more permanent companion. I asked many other noble ladies who had experience in keeping such pets.

I was advised to neglect them for a time with little, barring from them social interaction. This was so that when you ‘saved’ them from captivity, the beast would imprint themselves on their new owner. Due to the curse of darkness, it was safe to assume this particular demi had been shunned its whole life.

If I showed it any form of affection, it would instantly earn me its loyalty. I willing to keep it locked up for longer, but Bartolt’s report didn't indicate the need. If it showed sufficient obedience this meeting, I might just have to ‘reappropriate’ it from its cell.

My escort turns to his side and stands to attention, allowing me to peer into the dark room. Ah, she’s so cute… Laying on her back, her tail swaying slowly from side to side. Her docile position declaring the success of my plan. I attempt in vain to mask my joy, a silly grin spreads across my face.

I turn to the Bartolt, “What part of this slave appears threatening?” He looks down ashamed, the foolishness of his previous advice proven. Animated by my words, the kitten leaps to her feet. Mouth opening and closing, probably thinking about how to convince me to let her leave the cell. Looking at the demihuman, I introduce myself.

“I am Juliana von Wickten. Your new owner. I hope you do not disappoint~”. I see the cogs turning in her head. Probably excited at the possibility of being liberated from this cell.

“Miss Wickten,” the kitty bowed, “my name Kuro”. Kuro, huh. I was informed that she was nameless when browsing the slave market. The slaver said that she showed no indication of being able to communicate with humans.

Her time in confinement must have pushed her to reveal her cards then. From the few words she spoke, I could infer that she had little experience with Ortheanian. However, for a thing that supposedly lived in the wild for all its life, it was an unexpected bonus. This confirmed that it had some degree of intelligence. Its words may not have been any better than those of a clumsy two-year-old… but a pet could always be trained.

I call for the guard to undo its restraints, hearing the jingling of keys behind me. Bartolt opens the jail door and steps into the room. The demihuman looks between me and the guard several times rather comedically, disbelief etched on its face. That’s right my little pet, I am ‘rescuing’ you from this place. The shackles fall to the ground with a clatter and she rubs her bruised wrists, ears turned sideways confessing her anxiety.

“Tell the maidservants to make Kuro decent and then send her to my bedchamber. I will be in the library if you need me.” The guard bows, “I will be back in a moment, my lady.” He hesitates before marching off, heading to the west wing to assemble some maids, leaving me and Kuro alone together.

Ah, finally… My face flushes red and I begin to get excited. Ever since consummating my marriage, Lord Wickten rarely tended to my… needs. He was always busy playing with his other concubines, leaving me as the head wife with piles of work he abandoned. That man left me frustrated in more ways than one. My breathing got a bit heavier. I finally had something to relieve this unbearable burden of mine… Completely obedient… Completely mine. I wanted to defile Kuro right now… But not yet.

It will take time. She is in a new environment, though she completely trusts me, trust alone cannot teach her how to properly service a woman. Calming my breathing, readjusting my dress and regaining my dignity, I turn to Kuro who wore a complex expression. Noticing Bartolt returning with three maids in tow, I playfully wink at the demihuman before turning around. “See you tonight~”

As I walked away from the cell, I heard the triumphant rejoicing of Kuro from behind me. What a precious little thing.

 

POV: Kuro, Pet of Juliana Von Wickten

As Juliana left, I couldn’t help but burst into maniacal laughter. “Nyahahaha!” I cackled, the sound coming from my mouth too sweet for my liking... I hadn’t laughed since I got here. What an unexpected turn of events. My perseverance had paid off. My week of suffering and humiliation coming to a close. I inferred that the woman told them to shepherd me someplace else. Anywhere was better than this filthy room. I was optimistic they were going to treat me more graciously this time, indicated by the release of my restraints.

Three maids in Victorian-esque outfits came into view and gestured for me to follow them. Not seeing any reason to refuse, and somewhat curious at what they had in store, I compliantly followed. It seemed my introduction was acceptable, noticing Juliana using my name in a sentence directed at the guard. 

I decided it was best if I identified myself as Kuro, as I suspected ‘Kurosaki Kageyama’ would have been interpreted as babbling nonsense to a westerner’s ears. I was led down the hall, the opposite direction to where Juliana left. The horrid stench which should have been left behind still clung to my form. Not that the smell bothered me, but I saw the maids scrunch their noses as I got close. They led me into a small room, wooden tubs lining the walls on both sides.

“Trieve hent,” one spoke, gesturing to one of the baths. Despite the cold, I had no complaints. The urge to clean this filthy body prevailing over any opposition I had. Stripped of my clothes, I hopped in, eager to cleanse myself.

 

---- Later ----

Curiosity got the better of me, I really should have just drowned them when I had the chance. It was the perfect opportunity as well; the guard had disappeared somewhere. Instead, I let myself be captivated by the hypnotic scrubbing the maids provided. After indulging in the pampering, I snapped back to reality once again. I was wearing a fucking dress! Don’t get me wrong, it was leagues better than the tattered rags I wore before. But to my male sensibilities, I was nauseated by what I saw hugging my lithe body, and had half a mind to tear it off and just go fully nude. I Sighed.

I’ve already come this far to earn their trust. It wouldn’t do to trade-in just yet, I reminded myself. This was a long-term investment. Just hold out a little longer; my instincts told me the pieces would fall into place. Just like those ‘arrangements’ I devised for my adversaries, I had to remain patient here to see them to fruition. The pay-out would be huge.

Just a bit more information had to be gathered, and I would be ready to neutralise my captors without remise. I can’t help but think how much they have prepared though. The frilly white dress provided to me appeared to be bespoke. It came equipped with a hole sewn for my tail and was a snug fit for my body.

The maids led me through the complex again. Passing by my cell again, I recognised we were heading in the same direction that Juliana went. We exited the building and into what appeared to be the wilderness. A vast expanse of green stretched out in front of me with dark oak trees dotted around.

Upon closer inspection, the grass was trimmed, and the hedges seemed to be catered to. This was private property. The three led me down a cobbled path and into a forest, the trees growing dense as we continued our trip. After walking for a few minutes, I saw a clearing up ahead. Coming into view, I saw a huge mansion, much more substantial and extravagant than I could ever have hoped to acquire in Japan. Thankfully, this confirmed one of my suspicions.

Judging by the European-style architecture, it was safe to say I was far from home. We continued towards the mansion and entered a grand foyer, grand arching staircases fanning either side of the room, framing an incandescent chandelier. A smooth and polished marble floor beneath my feet showcasing the occupants’ incredible wealth.

Priceless ornaments and paintings neatly arranged, subtle enough not to look out of place, but just enough to catch your eye. The maids traversed the maze-like hallways with ease, and I soon came to a tasteful, gilded wooden door, embellished with expertly engraved spiral patterns. The maids knocked twice, and twisted the door handle with grace, ushering me in before leaving with a bow, noiselessly shutting the door behind me.

A decadent room greeted me, the centrepiece of the room being a sizable four-poster bed draped with transparent curtains. I examined the room with a keen eye, taken aback by its ludicrous size. This one room dwarfed the penthouse I owned in Tokyo. My eyes were drawn towards an ornate full-length mirror that rested against a wall. I haven’t gotten a proper look at myself since I got here. Tentatively walking over to the mirror, I gazed at my form and froze… this was not right. Not at all.

A face I did not recognise stared back at me. I had expected the mirror to show someone who bore some resemblance to me. Instead, I was greeted by a stranger. She looked to be just about reaching adulthood, nothing like my actual age. Her face was slender, bore delicate lips and had soft, shadowy eyes and long, flowing hair. From what little I’ve seen, these people lived in the past. Not a single LED lightbulb nor electrical appliance in sight. My captor's scientific capabilities were low. I highly doubted their ability to reverse ageing. I now inhabit an entirely new body. Shit. I really did die that day.

 

POV: Juliana Von Wickten

Notified that Kuro had safely made it to my room, I decided to finish up. Closing the book in my lap, I got off the couch, collecting a few more books from the shelves before leaving the library. I turned to the maid assigned to me for the day, “Prepare some salmon and deliver it to my bedroom. The cat will have it.” She bowed and headed to the kitchen. As I neared my room, my head was full of thoughts about Kuro. My breathing became uneven and my face flushed red.

Ah, control yourself, Julia. 

Breathe in… and out. This was a long-term investment. I couldn’t act recklessly and waste everything I’ve put in so far. Coddle her with affection and gain her trust. That was the current plan. It wouldn’t do to rush into things too quickly. Training Kuro was going to take effort on my part, but I am sure I will be able to groom her into a perfect companion for me, able to serve me in both the day… and night. I reached the door. Not wanting to spook the thing, I announced myself. “I am coming in…”

 

POV: Kuro

I was reincarnated into a different world. This was my conclusion. No sane person in the world with wealth this extravagant would live without the use of modern luxuries like electricity. This helped explain the discrepancies I’ve seen so far. They could not genetically modify humans, but rather, this world seems to be inhabited by other humanoid species, and I had transmigrated into the body of one. Although just a theory, I could attribute the low technological level to potential inter-species conflict. Innumerable wars of extermination waged upon each other would hinder the development of modern science. I can definitely see that happening.

If humans managed to struggle against themselves for all of recorded history in my world, the wars here would be infinitely more common. This world could very well be at constant war. I can assume my subspecies are on the losing side, judging from the blatant scorn and disdain I received. It seemed like subspecies like me don’t get the POW treatment, but slavery. I guess human rights can’t really be applied to cases like me, both because I fall outside this category, but mainly because human rights probably don’t exist just yet.

Luckily, they were now treating me with civility following the orders of Juliana. The question remained, what for? Acting obediently was no reason to transport me from the cells to this bedroom. Juliana wanted something, and I am afraid that the language barrier would become an issue very quickly.

My ears perk up once again, and I hear the soft footsteps of someone stopping outside the room. “Si elt myzmri hent.” I hear a woman's voice before the door swung open. The lady I met before walked in, several books in her hands catching my interest. I had seen no books along my way here, nor were there any stashed in this room. A book would be a great indicator of their technological advancement, even if I could not read it. The use of a printing press would indicate the current period to be post-middle ages, whereas a handwritten book hinting at the opposite. 

She placed the books down on a nearby nightstand and paced towards me with a slight smile on her face. Now that I had a good look at her, she was totally my type, outclassing Favourite #1 easily. If I still had my manhood, I would have tried to have my way with her right here and now. She has an otherworldly pair of sapphire blue eyes, her face framed by long, cascading platinum blonde hair. Her otherworldliness was only accentuated by her choice of clothes. She wore a suggestive black dressing gown which clung loosely to her body. She was what I could only describe as a fallen angel. Added to the fact that she released me, I was indebted to her. I had no play against her here. I was a subhuman species with nothing to my name. I was on her turf, and could probably be executed if she so wished.

This was completely in her favour, and I hated that feeling. Standing awkwardly facing each other, she attempted to initiate a conversation of some sort, but I had no clue what she was saying. I attempted to get the point across by gesturing to my fluffy ears and forming a cross with my arms. It seems this world’s conventions were too different to mine to communicate via sign language. She didn't understand me either.

 

POV: Juliana Von Wickten

Though she displayed some aptitude in speech, I had to make sure. Walking up to Kuro, I noticed that she gazed upon me rather reverently. She was too adorable. A wide grin threatened to spread across my face, one that I managed to tame into a friendly smile. Eager to begin, I asked if she could understand Ortheanian. Receiving a blank stare and some frantic hand movements as a reply, I could only sigh. We would be starting from zero then. Tutors out on the frontiers were hard to come by. Even rarer, tutors who would not mind schooling a demihuman, let alone one cursed by darkness.

I knew that I was going to have to teach her myself, but having to start from the basics will be a rather arduous task. I will have to set the other books aside for now, only one of the books I brought being a suited for this task. I hear a knocking at the door. It seemed Kuro’s treats had arrived. A maid walked in with a tray with a lonely, boiled salmon resting on it. I would never deign to eat such a sorry excuse for a meal, but to Kuro who had spent her entire life in the wild and in slavery, it should taste like heaven.

The nobles argued whether to use punishments or rewards to train their pets and they couldn’t agree on a consensus. Of course, I had seen the results of both extremes when visiting their domains. The ones that faced the whip never acted out of line, but the ones treated with rewards infrequently misbehaved but were generally more playful.From Kuro’s solitary history, any affection I provided would win her obedience, and the rewards would only encourage her growth.

“Thank you, just leave it next to the bed. You are dismissed.”

I grabbed the topmost book from the pile, walked over to the bed and perch myself on the edge, the picture book resting on my lap. Noticing Kuro standing fixed in place, tail swaying unconsciously behind her, I called her over. “Here,” I patted the spot on the bed next to me. Understanding my intent, she curiously makes her way over and sits next to me, attention divided between the book and the steaming fish next to me.

“Hehe, want the fish Kuro? You are going to have to work hard for it~” I turn to the first page. It was commissioned generations ago by the royalty and mass-produced by the magician's guild. Its sole purpose was to teach Ortheanian children the basic names of things. Each page had a large, colourful picture that dominated half the page, with one to two words underneath it in bold text. The magicians really did a good job on composing the images, all of them too seemingly ripped from reality and squashed onto the page. Even I learnt from this book when I was young.

The first page was of the Orthean Palace, with the bold word ‘PALACE’ written underneath it. Of course, commissioned by the royalty, it made sense that they had a say in what words were taught to children first.

“Palace”, I said, my finger tracing the word in sync with my speech. Noticing Kuro was distracted by the salmon, I tap her shoulder. She turns to me with pleading eyes, begging for the salmon. I shake my head. Kuro would only get the salmon if she learnt the words. “Palace”, I say once again, my finger tracing the word on the page.

“P-palis” she squeezes out.

Good enough.

I have heard that letting the pet eat directly out of your hands reinforces their reliance on you… but I admit I just wanted to do something lewd to Kuro. I go and cut a small chunk of salmon and pick it up with my fingers. Enthusiastically, Kuro leapt up to my hand and devoured the meagre portion, a face of ecstasy on full display as she chewed eagerly and swallowed just as fast. With the oil and fishy smell clinging to my fingers, I dangle them close to her face, hoping for Kuro to notice my intentions.

*Lick* She began by gently licking one like a popsicle, her tongue dexterously caressing it. I was enjoying the sensation before she surprised me by taking the entirety of my index finger into her mouth. Bobbing her head up and down, I felt her rough tongue coil around it, searching meticulously for any scrap of excess fish.

Up and down, her slimy, hot tongue travelled the length of my finger several times. Seemingly content with her thoroughness, she slowly pulled her head away from my finger, a string of saliva connecting my finger to her soft lips. Unsatisfied, she proceeded onto my next digit, hungry for more.

*Lick*

*Lick*

*Lick*

Ah, Kuro… you’ve made my panties wet. You really are a tease. Don’t worry. There is more salmon where that came from.

 

AN: Chapter 3 is complete! My longest chapter yet, over 3k words! Kuro finally learns about the truth of her situation, and Juliana just wants a companion to ease her burdens... Next chapter will timeskip, and I might try my hand at an R-18 chapter. If you have any suggestions or corrections please comment below! clear.png

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