Before my shocked eyes, the woman I accepted as my Mother, or at least the Mother of the body I was in right now, was dragged down the stairway by two women. She was stripped by those around her, her blousing falling down and exposing her naked upper half.
I was instantly enraged, but a small part of me reasoned that this was simply the way this world was. Women made up the majority, so stripping a woman in public wasn’t as shocking as it might have been in my old world. A servant pushed out a block and then Mother was shoved down across it. It was when the whip was brought out that I finally snapped out of my stunned silence and stepped forward.
“What is going on here?” I demanded.
“My son…” Mother smiled sadly. “Do not get involved. This is merely politics.”
I instantly ignored her words, the answer not satisfying for me in the slightest. I turned to the group of men standing to the side and watching my mother pressed down while a woman walked out with a whip in her hand. She looked like an entertainer, not an executioner or some kind of punisher, but in some ways that made it feel worse.
“What are her crimes?” I demanded.
“Caleb!” Mother responded sharply, even with her head down. “Give respects to your father and grandfather.”
There were nine men total that looked to be part of the council, and I didn’t know which was my father or my grandfather. However, there was a pair that looked to be related, an older man and his younger. Following their age back, I sort of looked like the younger man. It was my best guess that they were my father and grandfather.
I lowered my head, not making eye contact with anyone specifically. “Please, father. I wouldn’t be able to have peace if I did not understand the council’s actions.”
“Arrogant…” A man to the side mumbled, but the one I suspected was Caleb’s father stepped forward and lifted an arm, silencing him.
“I, for one, wanted you to sit in on this council meeting, but some here felt it would be a conflict of interest.” The man said.
H was a tall, thin man with a beard and dark black hair. He might have been considered handsome, but when his eyes fell over me or Mother, there wasn’t the slightest hint of affection within them. It was clear that this man didn’t care much for the woman who had his son. As for me, it felt a bit like I was a tool that he could use. At least, that was the impression I was getting from him.
When he spoke of a conflict of interest, the one who had called me arrogant sniffed and lifted his chin. I could tell that they were likely rivals in the group. They stood apart from each other on either side of the group and did not even look at each other as they spoke.
“I said the boy has an unhealthy attachment to his mother, and he would cause conflict without decisions.” The opposition spoke tightly. “And, it appears my beliefs were completely founded.
The man who would be my father ignored him, taking a step towards me. “Caleb, my son, you will be on the council soon. Once a male child is born, I look forward to the days I can teach you everything I know, just as my father taught me. Of anyone present, you alone have the right to demand an answer from the council.”
There was some mumbling, even among a few council members on the opposition’s side. It was clear his announcement was a bit unpopular. While he said I was close, it could easily be fifteen years before I finally have a male child and get on the board. Furthermore, a lot could happen in that time. Everyone could see the tipping point of power here. If I got on the board, 3/10th of it would be composed of a single-family. Due to noble traditions, we’d have a great deal of control in the council, and thus the entirety of Matahari. It was a tough pill to swallow for anyone on the opposition’s side.
“Grandson…” The older man standing next to him had a greyer beard and a sharper disposition that didn’t even have the kindness that Father showed. “We can discuss your mother’s crimes in private. This is not the appropriate place.”
“After she’s been punished?” I grimaced. “Doesn’t that negate any point in hearing her crimes?”
“Enough of this!” The guy on the opposing side stepped forward, “You may be on the council one day, but that depends on your producing any children. Since you’ve turned 12, there has been no child produced from the noble line!
“Davont!” The father turned to the other man for the first time. “You’re out of line! My son has fathered various children!”
“Hehe… that’s right, starting at age five. Don’t act like they are truly his children. It’s well known how the royal family likes to embellish the legitimacy of children…”
That’s enough!” Father took a step toward the opposition but was stopped by his grandfather’s hand.
“Do not allow yourself to be baited so easily.” The grandfather sighed. “He only speaks the worries that many of them have. Your son has been without a child in nearly five years since he’s officially come of age. Furthermore, he seems to have an unnatural attachment with his mother. Perhaps it is time that we take a heavier hand in his involvement.”
Although he was agreeing with Davont, the man wasn’t smiling. Anything that their side agreed to was probably not something that did him any good. He wanted to throw mud on our faces, but the current arrangement was probably the most favorable for Davont. As soon as I produced an heir, his power in the council would diminish. It was in his best interest that I remained the way I currently am.
“What does Father have in mind?” My father lowered his head immediately indifference.
My Grandfather stepped forward. He was an older man with more wrinkles. He was shorter than father and had no kindness about him whatsoever. When his eyes fell on me, they were incredibly cold and emotionless. This was a man who calculated everything. Looking at him, I could see how Caleb ended up as the uncaring monster he came to be.
“Woman, give him the whip.” His eyes fell on the woman who was holding the whip nearby.
She reached out and dropped the whip in my hands. I let out a noise and shot the ten upfront a shocked look.
“What is this?”
“Your mother, the queen, has control of the palace. Her responsibilities include being a liaison to the public and raising you. Had you been producing female offspring regularly, perhaps some of her transgressions could be overlooked,” Grandfather explained. “However, she also allowed an assassination attempt on you a few months ago and was unable to locate you for several weeks when you took off. Your safety should be her primary concerned, but she failed to maintain that safety at various points.”
“My safety… I’m an adult! I take care of my own safety.” I growled back.
“Your mother also set a deal to allow mining rights under the city. As we know, this directly led to the tragic disaster when the mine suddenly collapsed.”
“To save me!” I exclaimed. “That deal was to save me… If anyone, I should be…”
The words stuck on my tongue. I didn’t want to be whipped either. This wasn’t a normal practice in my old world anymore. This was brutal and scarring. I didn’t want anyone to be whipped.
“This is why you are going to be one delivering it. It is time that you understand how this world works.” Grandfather said.
“Caleb!” Father interrupted. “Do not argue any further. You have your reasons. Now, do as father commanded. Ten lashings. If we find them to be unsatisfactory, then she shall be whipped again for another ten, so do not think you can light arm her. If my son is not able to do it, then I will do the next ten myself, and I will use my full strength to do it!”
“C-caleb…” Mother said quietly, “Please… I’m sorry for having failed you… please, do this for me.”
My eyes shot around the entire party. Everyone was watching, but I didn’t see a single ounce of pity on anyone’s faces. There wasn’t a person at this party who didn’t accept this completely, including the woman who it was being done to. I gritted my teeth and grabbed the handle of the whip. I allowed the rest of the long whip to fall to the ground. It was about eight feet long in all. Would it hurt more or less if I kept my distance? I didn’t know.
At that moment, the face of the woman I had just met on the balcony entered my mind. She spoke of a revolution that planned to end my family line. That would mean that this regime would end. This council of detached men who casually ordered women to be whipped would be gone. That would mean Talitha herself would be danger too. However, part of me felt good at the thought that these people would be stopped.
I lifted my whip and brought it down. Interestingly enough, it didn’t feel much more difficult than it did in the bedroom. Talitha had a whip in the bedroom, and I had even used it on her once. Plus, I had used one on Rose too, but that had never been as hard. With a smack, a red welt appeared on her back.
“One…” I said flatly.
Mother managed to keep her mouth shut. I continued to deliver my smacks, each one causing a vibration to shoot through my arm. Mother only let out a cry on the 5th one. She sounded in pain, but as her lover, I also heard just a hint of lust in her voice. That was right, even here, my mother was turned on.
I struck her again and again, each time creating a crack of the whip and a pained noise form her. However, the sound from her seemed less rough and more sensual. I found my hand being stopped as I raised the whip one more time. I looked to the side to see the woman.
“That was ten.” She said helplessly.
“Ah…” I blushed.
I had gotten into it like when Mother and I were in the bedroom. In reality, the welts on her back weren’t much worse than the ones I often left on her bottom. Upon reflected, her screaming was about the same level too. I had put up a big stink about it, but in reality, I had forgotten one very important thing. Mother was a complete masochist! Well, at least when it came to me. As a result, I hadn’t gone easy on her a single bit.
When the lady pulled the whip from my hand, I went down to check on mother. As I helped her up and covered her chest, she whimpered in my ear.
“Baby… that was amazing… I want you so bad right now.” Mother purred in my ear, even while keeping her facial features a perfect look of chagrin and haggardness.
It wasn’t said with any sense of anger. It was instead incredible erotic and sensible. On that note, I could smell her too. It was clear mother had cum during her whipping. Someone who didn’t know he probably wouldn’t notice, but I had grown familiar with the scent of this woman and I knew when she had… finished. As I fought to keep from blushing, I shot a look at the ten men, hoping our act had been sufficient. The ten men had already turned around and were walking back into the back den without another word.
They didn’t seem to care at all. Other people came to take my mother away and heal her. Some patted me on the shoulder or gave condolences. Of course, I wasn’t going to tell people it was all okay and that my mom liked getting whipped like this, it only made me feel more embarrassed. I found myself getting swamped with women again who were looking to catch my eye or join my harem. I spent another fifteen minutes carousing with them, even remembering to take down a few names to ask my mother about when she returned.
However, when an hour passed, I made an excuse and left. The strange woman on the balcony had told me to meet them, and I had to find out more about this revolution. Had Prince Caleb really been living a double life? Was he not simply a terrible Prince who abused women, but a traitor who desired to see his own family fall? Given how twisted of a personality he had, that was very possible. In fact, didn’t I just have a similar thought when they were asking me to beat my mother?
Even my Mother was a woman who stepped on others. She had okayed that mine, worked with demons, and went to extreme methods. She only cared about me. That left me feeling extremely complicated. On the one hand, it was nice to be loved. On the other hand, she was capable of extreme evil. She had ordered people dead just for looking at me wrong. She had facilitated my former selves extremely evil treatment of women. This administration really did feel corrupt and perhaps deserving of their fate.
While having such thoughts, I made my way to the greenhouse. It was a large room in the back filled with greenery. It was called a greenhouse, but it more closely resembled a conservatory, filled to the brim with carefully constructed biome. It was a very beautiful place with a long winding path which offered a lot of places to hide. No wonder she wanted to meet here.
Was it even smart to meet this woman? Could I just tell the council what happened? That could potentially implicate me though. I didn’t know what Caleb had done up until this point, so I didn’t know what kind of trouble I was in for all of this. I had to find the answers out of my own, and it was as simple as that.
Most of the plants in this greenhouse were familiar to the ones I had seen in my old life. So far, there didn’t appear to be anything magical or monstrous. It was just a typical greenhouse. Someone grabbed me suddenly and pulled me into the bushed. I didn’t struggle as I was dragged into a small hidden clearing. I had expected to be grabbed like this. Looking around, I saw the girl who I had spoken with on the balcony, and three other women, including the one who had grabbed me.
As soon as I was in the clearing and they were certain I wasn’t going to yell out, they released their grip on me. All four women were beautiful, but two of them looked a bit stronger and fitter, sort of like Brooke. The third was a foreign girl, although not white. Finally, there was the woman I had seen at the party, who seemed to be the leader of this group.
“You had a job to do… why haven’t you completed it?” The woman in charge demanded, crossing her arms.
I decided to continue to play like I understood what the hell they were talking about. “If you hadn’t heard, I was poisoned. An assassination that put me into a prolonged coma. You can’t say that I haven’t been preoccupied lately.”
The four women looked at each other and then the leader lowered her head. “So, it was true. I actually thought you had been compromised. Had you not approached me tonight or brought anyone else here, I would have assumed you’d been broken. If it wasn’t for Talitha’s strange obsession with you, I would have been certain they had killed you when you disappeared months ago. Do they know who did it?”
“Mother blamed my sister Kemala, but I don’t believe that to be the case. We’re still not 100% sure, but a servant did try to smother me to death.”
The four women looked at each other with a strange look. Had I said something wrong. I wore a smile on my face but I felt completely out of my element here. I wasn’t confident I could lie my way through this at all.
“Are you okay, Caleb?” The woman asked.
I put a smile on my face, “Of course, I am fine.”
“It’s just… you have never called that woman your mother in private like that. You know that they’re not your real family.”
“Of course, they’re not my real family.” I put on a bitter expression on my face.
I was able to fake it so well because deep down, I had a family back in Amaryllis. However, what did these people mean by Caleb not being my real family? I was certain they were!
“She is… truly deplorable woman. You haven’t forgotten what has done, right?” I asked, testing the waters.
The woman nodded. “That woman… when she found out she was pregnant with me and not a boy, she faked that I was a boy. Then she stole you from your family and raised you as her own instead. Never forget what that woman did… to both of us.”
“I won’t.” Holy shit!
Of all the things I would have expected her to say, I never expected to find this out. So, no wonder there was no familiar love. I wasn’t even really a Prince! In fact, the woman in front of me was the closest thing that this nation had to a Prince at the moment. I thought I looked like my mother and my father. I mean, she could have picked someone who would like her family. I didn’t know. This was big though; this was something that truly would shake the nation.
“Forget about your other plans. We have an opportunity coming up soon. I’d like you to take it.”
“What is that?” I asked, swallowing my shock and doing my best to keep my face straight.
“A few weeks ago, we heard plans that the council was invited on a trip to an unstable country that appears to have a strong group of man-hating women.”
“It’s a world peace accord meeting. They plan to discuss the plights affecting the male population and trying to come up with solutions to increase fertility and maintain the world population. There are over 100 nations that have been invited to this thing. Matahari is just one of them.”
“Is an unstable nation really the right place to have this kind of thing?”
“Well, it’s a small country that has the room and means of supporting this kind of event. We suspect they will send at least 4 members of the council.”
“Okay… I guess… what does this have to do with me?”
“You must do two things. First, you must get me into your harem. Mother does not recognize me. She abandoned me seventeen years ago. Secondly, you must convince the council to allow you to come on this journey.”
“And bring a harem member along?” I asked, raising an eyebrow.
She nodded. “I will be your plus one on this trip.”
“What is the plan, then?”
“We’re going to assassinate the council.” She said, her eyes flickering. “I want them dead!”
I lowered my head, fearing that she was going to say that from the beginning. Now that I knew the plot, I really wish I hadn’t come down here. Now I was in the thick of something. Losing almost half the council will sure be a blow. Whenever this revolution happens, it will finish the rest of it. This woman wanted to completely overthrow the government. Whether it was because Mother threw her away or some other, deeper meaning, I couldn’t even guess. I realized I was way over my head here, even more so than I could have predicted.
However, I also couldn’t tell them no. I don’t know my old self, but she had put a lot of trust in him. Now that she told me her plans, I could either betray or help. There was no middle-ground. That was when one of the things she had sit struck my mind. She had mentioned the location of this peace talk.
“This talk, what country will it be in?“ I asked, but dreading that I already knew the answer.
“The talk will occur in a small country called Amaryllis.” The girl responded.
Of course, it was.