It was in the tenth suite that the concubine was introduced as Salma. Suddenly, Henry remembered that this was the name he had seen
frequently on charge sheets where sailors had been caught with one or other of the concubines. It seemed she had a penchant for misbehaving
with sailors, and the Purser quickly confirmed that this was so.
“Would you like me to stop that?” asked Henry.
The Purser wondered what the Admiral’s punishment might be, so he said, “I would be most grateful, Admiral.”
Henry nodded and ordered Salma taken on deck and a whipping bench to be placed there, about six feet from the starboard rail. He also
ordered four other concubines who had been caught recently with sailors to be taken on deck and chained to the rail where they had a good
view of proceedings. A single eunuch was to escort them. Word of a public whipping of a concubine spread like wildfire through the ship
and there was a good crowd watching when the Admiral, the Purser and the Master-At-Arms came on deck.
Henry addressed the assembled crew, “This is a punishment ordered by me for repeatedly consorting with sailors. The sailors concerned
have all been flogged, and my purpose is to make it clear that the woman is at just as much risk as the man when she allows him into her
bed. A simple scream would alert the eunuch to prevent her rape; failing to scream means she was not raped, but a willing partner in this
crime. Accordingly Salma will now be flogged here, naked. Then she will be left here for twenty-four hours, to be used by any sailor who
wants her, in any way he pleases. Until sunset, the four concubines on the rail will watch her punishment, as a warning to them. Those
four will not be touched, and there is a guard eunuch to prevent it.”
He turned to the Master-At-Arms, “Three strokes multi-tailed, please. One on the shoulders, one on the arse and one on the legs. Wait
between the strokes so that she gets the full effect of all of them.”
“Master, she will pass out,” warned the whip expert.
“Then revive her after each stroke,” said Henry.
Salma was brought out and stripped of her abaya, then shackled in place on the whipping bench. She was nothing special, just a plump
little pleasant-looking woman with a light olive skin. Henry guessed her to be about thirty, and wondered how she had managed to reach the
service of the Emir. Later he learned that she had been selected by his predecessor after a spectacularly successful audition. She was
trembling with fear as she was stripped, and as she was shackled to the whipping bench she could not hold herself in, and urine trickled
down her legs, then sprayed out as she lost control.
“Hose her down,” ordered Henry.
Salma was duly hosed down and the urine washed away.
“Dry her,” he ordered and a large towel brushed away most of the water.
The woman lay there, still trembling with fear.
Sississis … CRACKACKACK.
The first stroke across the shoulders was not, Henry thought, particularly vicious. Evidently the eunuch doing the whipping was trying
not to harm her. Nevertheless the woman cried piteously at the pain, but he decided much of that was for show.
“Do it properly, or take her place,” he snapped.
Sississis … CRACKACKACK!
The second blow fell neatly across her plump little arse, all seven strands lying on the buttocks and no marks appearing on the back or
the legs. The woman screamed in genuine agony and her body convulsed for some seconds before she passed out.
“Revive her,” he ordered and a eunuch stepped forward with smelling salts and a bucket of cold water.
Some minutes later Salma had recovered far enough to suit him and he nodded to the Master-At-Arms.
Sississis … CRACKACKACK!
She passed out before she had time to scream and the eunuch again woke her with sal volatile. Just as he was going to pour water over
her, Henry stopped him.
“Use sea water,” he ordered, “It will help to clean the damaged areas.”
‘And it will sting like all hell,’ he thought.
When she had again been dried, the Admiral turned to the nearest watching sailor, an ugly-looking small man, and said, “She is yours,
and anyone else’s, for the next twenty-four hours.”
The sailor lost no time in thrusting into her arse, ignoring her screams as he parted her arse cheeks with his callused hands.
In the Emir’s bedroom, Janice was not behaving at all well.
“You might have asked me if I wanted to sleep with you,” she whined, “A girl likes to be wooed you know.”
The Emir stared at her, almost as astonished as the eunuch at this outburst from a mere woman.
“Why would I ask you?” he demanded, “Your master has lent you to me and that is all there is to it. It is your job to satisfy me by
doing whatever I want.”
“Rubbish,” she replied, recklessly deciding that she was doomed anyway, and sufficiently relaxed by the alcohol on an empty stomach not
to care, “I am not a possession; I am a human being.”
“Oh, that I grant you, the human bit,” replied the Emir, “and in England you would not be a possession, but here in Kobekistan you are
just exactly that. Do you realise it is not possible here to murder a woman? Only men can be murdered; killing a woman is regarded as
property damage. You see the laws of this land as laid down over the ages by countless Emirs do not, and never have, take any account of
religion. Therefore the law has no concept of soul, as distinct from body, and even the Emir is indistinguishable from the lowliest rat in
the desert, save only that a man can be the owner of things while he lives, which a rat cannot.”
“What about conscience?” she asked.
“Shakespeare defined conscience best, I think, when he said, ‘Conscience is but a word that cowards use, invented first to keep the
strong in awe’. He showed the worth of this saying by putting it in the mouth of a King.”
Janice knew some Shakespeare from her school days and took a deep breath, “The King concerned was a half-mad hunchback on the eve of
The Emir stared at her for a moment and then roared with delighted laughter.
“I’ll give you this,” he spluttered, “you’ve got spirit.”
When he had calmed a little he said, “Be that as it may, it is now time for you to disrobe and minister to my bodily needs and desires.
You may suck me until I reach my first climax, and then lick me back to erection. Then you may take me in to your vagina for a while,
until I am close to a second climax. You may induce that second climax in your anus. Finally you may clean my penis with your tongue.”
“Is that all?” she asked in a voice dripping with sarcasm.
“Well, you could amuse me by pleasuring one of the Princesses, but I had intended to leave that until tomorrow morning.”
“And if I refuse?”
“A flogging sometimes changes people’s minds, and sometimes doesn’t,” replied the Emir, “I doubt you’ve had a real beating in you life.
However, if I have you whipped enough to change your mind, you may not be in a fit state to do your duty. I think I might be able to use
that wonderful conscience of yours to some effect.”
A quick sentence of Arabic which Janice did not understand sent the eunuch scurrying out of the room. Some minutes later he returned
with one of the ships’ hostesses who abased herself before the Emir, evidently thinking that she had been chosen for his bed that night.
Before she was given a signal to rise, two eunuchs came in to the room carrying a wooden construct the like of which Janice had never
seen before. It consisted of a low platform, much like a large pallet, with an upright beam of wood set in the middle of one edge. This
was about two feet six high and at the top was a cross beam with two padded cuffs on it. The whole thing was placed on a tarpaulin,
presumably to protect the carpet.
Janice tried to work out how it could be used, as the cross beam would prove no great obstacle to anyone shackled by the wrists to
‘She would not be held so she couldn’t struggle and avoid the whip,’ she thought, then smiled ruefully at her own assumption that it
was for use on females only.
What she didn’t understand at all were the two long straps across the middle of the floor parallel to the side where the upright beam
The Emir told the hostess to rise and the woman noticed the wooden platform which had been brought into the room behind her. A look of
utter dread crossed her face and she threw herself at the Emir’s feet, issuing a long stream of entreaties in Arabic.
The Emir ignored her, and asked Janice, “Have you seen one of these before? Experienced it possibly?”
“No, Master,” she said, still totally unaware of what it was, but impressed by how frightened the Kobekistani girl seemed.
“Let me explain, the woman lies on the floor of the device and her torso is held in position by the two long straps. Her ankles are
then fastened to the cuffs you see, and she is beaten across the soles of her feet, usually with a rattan cane. It is reputed to be very
painful, and it does not take too many strokes to make her unable to walk for a while. A serious beating can leave her crippled for
“What has she done, that you want to use this on her?” asked Janice, not doubting for a moment his description; if she had any doubts
the woman’s behaviour would have dispelled them at once.
“Nothing,” said the Emir, “Nothing that I know of. I never saw her before in my life,” and he motioned to the eunuchs, who dragged the
woman to the frame and fastened her into it.
She screamed in fear as the Emir took a long cane from one of the eunuchs and swished it in the air experimentally. Then he raised
his arm and brought the cane down, pulling the stroke at the last moment and laying the cane gently across her feet. A smell pervaded the
“You see? It has frightened her so much that she has already soiled herself, and I have not even hit her yet.”
“Why are you doing this?” asked Janice, already knowing the answer.
“You are disobedient, but punishing you would make you useless. On the other hand you speak to me of conscience. It seems obvious,
therefore, that if I punish her for your failings, you will be just as chastened as if I punished you personally.”
The cane came down on the feet of the woman, who let out a wild scream and then turned blue as she fought for breath, so shocked was
she by the agony inflicted on her feet.
Janice stared at the Emir as he lifted his arm again.
“Stop, stop,” she cried, “If you want me that much I’ll do it. I’ll do anything if you let her go.”
“Anything?” the Emir asked with heavy emphasis.
“Anything, Master,” said Janice, dropping to the floor and pressing her forehead to the carpet in total submission.
“I’ll hold you to that,” he replied.