Disclaimer: Methos, Kronos, the four horsemen, the bronze age and immortality belong to Widen/Rysher/Panzer/Davis. They own the whole world, right? <g> No profit, no harm, no character assassination intended.

Rated: NC-17

SERIOUS WARNING: nasty, ugly stuff ahead. Nothing extremely graphic, i think this one falls under the category "psychologically disturbing". Was for me, anyway, and i wrote it.

Dedication: This one is for Suze, who encourages our more violent tendencies. Also for Kevin Jesus Allin 8/29/56-5/28/93

Dead Or Alive

by Zen&nancy

There is nothing more terrifying than his laughter. I am face-first in the sand. There is no one and nothing around us for miles and miles, but I wasn't afraid until I heard his laughter. It's not madness, no, he only pretends to be mad to throw off prospective prey. I know better. I hear pure, unadulterated sadism in that laughter. Most would say evil. He is evil, but I don't allow myself to make such judgments. There is nothing but damage in his eyes. I can hear his consumption of my pain. He lives off it. Someday, when I am very sure that he is fatally addicted to it, I will take it away from him. Far, far away, someplace where there is no sun.

"Kneel!" He screams, dragging at the rope leash around my neck.

I make the slightest attempt to raise myself up on my hands, and let the rope pull me up the rest of the way. I can't count how many times I've died today. I don't know anymore. This will go on for as long as the hunger for my pain burns in his blood. It doesn't matter what I do, if I submit or fight. I will suffer, I will die, and if I slip up, and make the wrong judgment at the wrong time, he will take my head.

It's a very complicated, backwards sort of power play that defines this relationship. He gives me the choice, kill or be killed, daily, and every day I make the choice, and prove it to him again. That I have the strength to kill and the hatred enough to like it. That I have what he needs to consume. He's such a refined animal. Terrified mobs to burn and murder and whores to rape aren't nearly enough for him. Oh no, he needs so much more than blind terror and screams for mercy and repentance give him. They're his bread and water, his sustenance, but I am his banquet, his ambrosia.

I need to know this, to think of nothing else. My body has stopped healing, it can't keep up with him anymore, even if my will can. I control him, to an extent. I plot his raids and his battles, manage his slaves and his women, assassinate his rivals and count his booty. I sell or slay his prisoners, and hold court for his followers to settle disputes in the camp. I am not his slave, I am not his anything, but he would take my head if I tried to leave him. I have tried, three times. On the last, when I had been gone over a moon's cycle before he found me, he forced the women to dig deep holes in a ring around the camp. Every night, for seven days, he buried me alive and sat smiling on the ground, waiting for me to claw my way back to the surface. Many, many times, I suffocated before I made it back up to the cold night air.

He cannot tolerate my will to escape him, but it is not my submission he craves. If I ever broke before him, if I begged for mercy, if I told him once that I couldn't stand any more, he would take my head, and my quickening, and it would be done. I don't want to be inside him for all eternity. It's the only fear I have left, it's the only thing keeping me alive. I have fed him all the others, a little bit at a time.

I scream when my arms are broken. I wasn't expecting that. That's not good, it's dangerous to let him get ahead of me in a mood like this. My arms dangle limply behind me. I can't feel the rope that binds my elbows at the small of my back, or anything else but this new, vicious pain. Agony makes everything so much more real. Riding across the desert beside him at the head of the horsemen's train, I never understand him as well as I do being dragged in the dust behind his horse. I know more about how his mind works when he's hurting me than I could ever discover watching him fight. This is how I gain his trust, this is how I will survive, how I will escape. Pain is the only catalyst in his world. It's his currency, the only thing he understands.

This trial will end soon, the sun is sinking slowly on the desert horizon, turning the sand to layered shades of crimson and gold. This day won't last forever. Sooner or later, he'll get hungry, and drag me back to camp to spend the night under the furs in his tent, where a slave will bring me food. I have found the strength I need to survive this, the vindication and the vengeance I need to continue. I looked into his eyes.

Today he has cut me, and burnt me with hot iron, he has sodomized me and beaten me until I cannot speak, but he will not gain my surrender. He treasures me, and if I survive this day, tonight he will sleep with his head cradled against my chest, dreaming that we have conquered the world. It is no mean thing to be the object of Baal's desire.

Dead or alive

Fallin´ in love is one free ride

Spending my time getting high

Never know what to expect from me

The worst you get is the best you see

I´m going crazy am I really alive

If everyone follows us do we really survive

I sometimes wonder if I'll get up

Dead or alive

Used to be a spaceman

Too far out to neverland

Enjoy it like it's nothing knew

But this is heaven and hell and we're fallin' to

Used to be too blind to see

Destroyed everything in front of me

People stare and ask me why

Will I get up alive or will I die

I'm gonna get out

Dead or alive

Lyrics borrowed without permission from G.G. Allin

(thank you Monster)

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