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Threesomed 2

By:Elizabeth Black

Dreaming of the ogre's coming misfortune put a bounce in Muca's step. Ah, schadenfreude! The summer breeze blew blossoms in the air that floated around her head like dancers in a minuet. Birdsong floated in the trees along the lane. The sun played peek-a-boo behind gossamer clouds that dispersed in the afternoon sky like wisps of smoke, brushing her shoulders like a warm kiss.

As she strolled along, she wondered how her nefarious plan would play out with the villagers. She waved at a tall man whose skin burnished in the hot sun as he shielded his eyes from the brightness.

"Holå, cat!" He called. "Didn't we see you yesterday?"

"Yes you did. I was on my way to see the king. I went bearing gifts from the Marquis of Carabas."

"I heard of your Marquis of Carabas but I've never seen hide nor hair of him. How did the king like his gifts?"

"The rabbit was fat and the partridges were juicy. Perfect introductions for my Master!" Her grin was so broad she felt her muscles in her jaw tighten. Lying came so easy to her with her years of practice. Being a cat, subterfuge was her way of life, and her musings about the Marquis of Carabas were no different. Of course, there was no Marquis of Carabas. Her Master was a lowly and poor cobbler. With her help, she knew he was destined for great fortune. Her creation of the Marquis of Carabas would bring him the riches both of them needed to get by in this rough world.

"So tell me of your Marquis. Why haven't we met him?"

"He's new in these parts, and that's why I've come to you." Muca watched as young women in the field snipped tender leaves with their lips and dropped the leaves into baskets hanging around their necks. She had never seen such a means of harvesting, and the curiosity was killing her. "What on earth are they doing?"

"They are harvesting tea leaves for a special crop Derp the ogre wants to deliver to neighboring villages. He specially chose the women himself. They must be virgins with breasts at least the size of a C-cup. Derp insists the women have shapely curves to appease the gods. Their hands must never touch the leaves, only their lips. This tea is an elixir of the gods, and fairies originally harvested it. Now, only shapely virgins may harvest the tea with their lips in order to maintain the magical taste and effect."

I seriously doubt there's a virgin amongst them. Muca stared at the women who puttered about the field, bent over at the waist. Full breasts strained their bodices, and Muca felt a stirring in her core. Their cramped posture made her back hurt the longer she watched them. She shook her head in astonishment over the absurdity of the spectacle.

"That's the most asinine thing I've ever seen. Do you really believe what that ogre tells you?"

"No, but what can we do? He owns the land. We farm any way he demands, otherwise we'll be homeless."

"How would you like to farm for a new master? One who will take your needs into consideration and make your lives much more comfortable?"

"Who might that be?'

"The Marquis of Carabas, of course!" She reached into her knapsack and pulled out a few paper packets and several cuttings planted in soil. "Take these seeds and cuttings. Plant them now, in your best soil. The cuttings are of the most succulent Italian basil, grown in the most fruitful fields outside Tuscany. The seeds are the rare Budjo rosemary, native to the Orient. Plant them now. They will grow very quickly, and you may split the plants to make more. The flowers also bear seeds."

She held her jaw firm and tried not to blink too much, lest the farmer catch her lying. She held her breath until he accepted her offer. He didn't need to know she found the basil growing wild in her favorite meadow. Nor did she reveal the word "budjo" was Romany for "swindle". Not that she'd ever swindle these farmers. They were too important to her ultimate plan of establishing her Master, a poor cobbler, as a wealthy landowner in the village.

No, the rosemary was merely plain Italian rosemary grown from seeds found in her Master's home. The only one she intended to swindle was Derp the ogre. She had to get him out of the way to make room for her Master, soon to be known all over the village as the Marquis of Carabas.

"Why thank you, cat. Please feel free to stop by the village Inn before you leave town for our Harvest Festival. There will be dancing, drinking, and … " His grin hinted at untold delights Muca could only imagine. "… other fine activities."

"I shall take you up on your offer, kind sir. I have only one favor to ask of you."

"Name it."

"When the king drives by tomorrow and asks who owns these lands, tell him the Marquis of Carabas."

The farmer placed his hands on his hips, and grinned at Muca. "I have no idea what you're planning, my good friend, but if the end result is getting all of us out from under Derp's thumb, we will do what you say."

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