Michael Brown

The Paradise Wars and Clark Ransom Thrillers

Flash: It Started with Reading Black Beauty

It was Ronald’s idea to have a Baroque wedding, although Cynthia thought its excess Rococo.

Black BeautyShe admitted that Paris was a lovely destination, especially when it was not a matter of a first marriage, when one wanted the flaunt before the hometown crowd.

Not a first marriage, but as yet unconsummated: at Roland’s quaint, and she might add, cute suggestion.

Finally here she stood at the top of the aisle. And Saint Chapelle? How had he managed? Now, only her march down the white silk runner before her remained.

Yet her ruby heels, a one-of-a-kind gift from Manolo — under the weight of the gown’s brocade with layers of gold thread woven through bouquets of hand stitched roses and fleurs-de-lys on crimson satin and dusky damask — sank deeply into the carpet.

In the choir loft, the conductor began to beat out the cadences of Vivaldi’s mass. The air seemed to move in a wave, a pressure, towards her as all heads turned, waiting. She leaned back, would have stepped back and out, if the sunken heels, the mass of the dress, hadn’t rooted her.

The conductor continued. He reached the measure that should have matched her procession down the aisle halfway, to a rose  pinned to a pew.  Yet, she had yet to begin.

Then, “Cynthia, for pity’s sake.”

It was Ronald from the altar, and then Ronald’s echo off the stone buttresses, the cold crystal of the ruby and sapphire glass.

Then the thunder of his hooves as he ran towards her.  His gallop stopped just short, leaving her startled, hands before her, as if she could wave off the musky odor that steamed from the gleaming haunches.

His tuxedoed torso leaned down and towards her. He whispered, “Cynthia, please! What is this?”

“I can’t move! Ronald, I can’t move!”

He straightened to his full height, his head now at least a good yard above hers. He twisted at the waist and looked back towards the altar, as if all along he had been prepared for this, all along he had had a Plan B.

Then he bent towards her again and with a yank tore the gown and her undergarments from breast to floor.

He then lifted her, with one hand, quite nude from her shell, heaved her on to his back. Her heels gripped his ribs. He stirred below.

Turning towards the altar, Ronald reared back on his hind legs and whinnied through his human throat before galloping full force towards the altar.

In that speed, Cynthia felt gold pins fly free from her hair and her tresses stream behind.  In moments a life’s anticipation, with a Black Beauty of her own, would be met.

Had Ronald — as he said he had — prepared her?

He lifted her from his back and laid her, feet forward and dangling, upon the altar.

He leaned down and kissed her gently. Then with a roar, that left the audience uneasy yet oddly titillated, he reared back, balancing his weight with his front hooves either side of her, as his hands caressed her hair, before driving forward.

In the loft Vivaldi was a glory, while below  the communicants giggled with a satisfied and over-the-top perversity.

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