He stared down from horseback at the girl bent over the cotton bush, fingers poised to pluck a boll, looking up at him fearfully. Her face was a pale olive with sweat beaded on her forehead. Long, unkempt black hair fell over one shoulder. Her single shapeless garment, though dirty and torn, did not conceal the plenteous curve of buttocks.
“Are you one of Maisy’s daughters?” he asked gruffly.
“No, Massa. Her granddaughter.” The feminine voice was a throaty soprano.
“How old are you?”
“14, Massa James.”
“Who’s get are you?”
“Ma says your brother.”
“Does she!” He smiled slightly. “You’re dam is Dena?”
“Dena’s my ma.”
“Which makes you three-quarters white.”
She compressed her lips but said nothing.
“What’s your name?”
“Well, Fancy, are you tired of picking cotton?”
She hesitated and dropped her eyes, at last mumbling something.
“I didn’t hear that.”
“I said maybe.”
He huffed a chuckle. “You afraid I’ll put you to something worse?”
She rose to her feet and stood with head bowed.
“Looks like you have some real tits under that rag. Fancy, have you let a black boy between your legs yet?”
Her head rose and black eyes flashed. “No, Sah. Ma won’t let um.”
He studied her while the horse nibbled at the top of the bush. Her eyes fell.
“This afternoon will be a hot one. When you hear the lunch bell, tell Jensen I’ve sent you on an errand. Go to the main house, get a bite to eat then bring me my lunch at Sweetview.”
Her face went blank. She did not raise her eyes. “Is you making me, Massa?” she asked softly.
“I’m making you bring me lunch and getting you out of the hot field.”
“Is that all you a-making?”
He chuckled again. “You’re a sassy one! Must be that white blood.” His gaze grew stern. “Don’t make me go hungry!”
“Can I take a dip in the creek?”
“If you wish. Do it on the way to the big house.”
He turned the horse away. She watched him ride out of the field without looking back and licked her lips nervously.
* * *
“I’s here, Massa.”
At the soprano call he laid his book on the desk top and responded, “Come on in, Fancy.”
She pushed through the mosquito netting hanging inside the door and left it billowing in the breeze through the high-ceilinged room. She bore a tray of food: coffee and a covered plate, which she placed carefully on the table before him, using the edge of the tray to push his book aside. Her hair was stringy and damp but her garment, assuming she had donned it over her wet body, appeared to be dry, probably from sun and air during her walk from the house. Her forehead was dry and her odor, as she stood before him, was much fainter than it had been in the hot field.
He drew out his pocket watch. “I heard the dinner bell almost an hour ago. Did you enjoy your ‘dip?’”
Her head hung low and she mumbled, “Sorry, Massa. Hard to find a spot on the creek not covered in niggas.”
“I reckon so.”
He uncovered the plate, exposing ham steak, greens and a biscuit, took up the coffee cup, sipped from it and smacked his lips appreciatively. “Very good, Fancy. It has cooled just the right amount, and you’ve got the sugar right. Did you pour it?”
“How did you know?”
“Everybody in the house knows. I used to work there.”
“I was surprised to see you in the field. Don’t tell me you prefer the outdoors!”
“I prefers it to Old Kermit.”
“What does he do these days besides sit on the back porch?”
“Pinches all the gals.”
“Is that all?”
“He … he …”
The man’s eyebrows rose. “Why, Fancy, I believe you’re blushing!”
Her chin came up. “You gonna make me tell you?”
“Suppose I do?”
She shrugged. “Then I will. He sniffs me bleeding and sticks in his finger.”
“Up to his old tricks, is he? Thought you said you hadn’t let a black boy in there.”
“Didn’t let him.”
“His finger but not his cock?”
“I outruns that.”
“Didn’t tempt you at all, eh? Of course, you were bleeding?”
She turned her face away and mumbled something.
“Say that again.”
“I say, ‘Still is.’”
“Still what, bleeding?”
She nodded. “Yesterday was six. Today’s the last.”
Her eyes widened. She hesitated but finally bent and raised the un-hemmed garment above her pubic hair: kinky, black and plentiful. The hair of her head, unlike the lower set, was long and straight with no curl. When it fell over her face, she threw it back with a toss of her neck.
“Use your finger,” he directed.
She drew a pale forefinger between her legs and held it up a dingy red.
“So you’re not bluffing.” He nodded, took up a fork and began to eat, seemingly paying her no more attention. Eventually she let the garment drop and stood glumly watching.
Picking at the remaining food, he touched the napkin to his lips and said, “Didn’t you eat at the big house?”
He raised a small brown stick from the table drawer and held it out to her. “Here. Suck on that.”
She regarded it doubtfully. “What is it, Sah?”
It popped into her mouth. Her face lost its worried frown but regained it when he asked, “You like to suck?”
“I likes to suck candy.”
“But not cocks? Now about nice, big, juicy black cocks?”
She looked away. “I … I …”
“I know girls are curious, even the ones that see cocks all day. How many have you sucked?”
He chuckled. “If you think of them that way.”
“You means cocks.” She was blushing again, looking down at her bare toes. “I don’t know, Sah.”
“More than ten?”
“Oh, no, Sah!” Her voice was positive.
“In the edge of the woods, where the others couldn’t see you. How many, Fancy?”
Still blushing, she raised her chin and stared into his eyes. “You gonna send me to Jensen?”
“For a whipping? Why would I do that?”
“For sucking the boys.”
He sniffed. “My mother made that rule. I guess we didn’t tell you, but when she died, my brother and I stopped enforcing it. No one has been whipped for fucking since. Didn’t the darkies notice?”
“She ain’t dead a year.”
“Well, even if you sucked them while she was alive, you won’t be punished. How many times have black cocks been in your mouth, Fancy?”
“Um.” She took a deep breath. “Five times, Massa.”
“How many different cocks?”
“How many white ones?”
“None.” Her face lost all expression and she added in a near-whisper, “Until now.”
He laughed pleasantly. “You’re a smart one. Grab that cushion and sit at my feet.”
She rounded the desk, dropped the cushion beside him but looked doubtful. “You’s wearing boots.”
“I don’t want my toes sucked, Fancy. Kneel on the cushion.”
Her knees dropped to the pad and she waited stoically. He stood up, unbuttoned his fly and pushed the tight britches, along with the underclothing, down to bunch above his boots. She stared at the stiff organ, longer than the width of two hands, standing out toward her face. The purple knob had pushed part way through the foreskin. Her eyes crossed.
“As you see, Fancy, I’ve been anticipating your attention.”
Black eyes looked up at him. Otherwise she didn’t move.
“Come now, my dear. Is it so different from the other two — aside from color, of course?”
Eyeing him from the side, she said, “Jericho’s is longer.”
“Long enough to spend in your mouth?”
“Good. I was afraid you had done only juiceless pickaninnies.”
Her eyes rounded. “Oh.”
He grinned. “You didn’t count the little ones in your five, did you!”
“How many juiceless ones, Fancy?”
Her shoulders lifted in a shrug. “Most of the little boys. In past years.”
“Little darkies play that way, don’t they?”
“Do the little girls think cocks make nice toys?”
“I guess some of them does.”
“Why not, if they have nothing else?”
“They gots corn-shuck doll-babies.”
“But the boy-cocks taste better?”
“Very good. Now taste this one, even if it’s shorter than Jericho’s.”
She leaned forward, mouthed the head then backed away. “Can I wash it, Massa James?”
“If you want to do that, help me with my boots.” He sat down and raised one leg.
Turning her back, she straddled the boot, walked it off his foot and performed the same evolution upon his other leg. With the boots standing beside the desk, she turned again, cleared an area on the table, pulled off his wadded britches, straightened them and laid them neatly in the space.
She filled the washstand basin, tucked a handtowel under her elbow and set both before him where he stood waiting. Kneeling again, she laved his genitals in her wet hands, not neglecting the cock head after completely withdrawing the foreskin.
“Did you treat Jericho this well?” he asked with a sniff.
“No, Sah. When I works in the big house, I tends your pa.”
“Truly? He’s been dead three years.”
“Before my first blood.”
“And you washed his cock? Did you suck it?”
“Are you sure? Mother had one of you girls whipped for that.”
“That’s Oninnie. After Oninnie the missus watches us tend him.”
He laughed. “Yes, I’m sure! Poor father!”
“Oninnie was the first to get caught.”
“Implying that he … what?”
“The old gals says before Oninnie he puts his cock in all the black gals’ mouths, the blacker the most.”
“He liked the darkest ones, did he?”
“That’s what they says.”
James laughed. “That’s very interesting! I didn’t know Pop fancied black mouths so.”
“He tells them it’s the big thick lips.”
“He said that?”
“They says he says. But it ain’t just mouths.”
“Oh, Massa, for sure you know! He makes lots of us. Dena, my ma, is his get.”
“Mother must have insured his discretion. I’m impressed that his reputation for it stayed in the darky quarters.” He nodded. “But I’m not really surprised to hear about it. It’s the cheapest way to get new hands. Pop wanted the plantation to grow.”
He leaned forward enough for the head to touch her lips. She sighed, dried her hands and his genitals with the handtowel and opened her mouth wide. He glimpsed even, white teeth before her lips closed around him. Slowly her head came forward and admitted half the shaft. He felt her stroking tongue.
“That’s the way!” he declared with a smile.
Her neck flexed gently. Slurping noises arose as her cheeks indented with suction. His hands closed on her head and drew her with him as he sagged into the chair, where he released it to resume bobbing. He said, “Are you sure it was only five times with Jericho?”
Eyes seeking his was her only response. She hitched closer and settled back on her heels. Her hands rested on his knees. Her head bobbed faster, taking another inch of shaft.
Her eyes widened slightly at the initial dribble and rounded after his first strong spurt. Her bobbing slowed to a stop as he groaned and the emission ceased. He took a deep breath. Their eyes remained locked. She did not move, aside from flaring nostrils, holding half his organ quietly in her mouth, no longer sucking.
He chuckled slightly. “What are you waiting for?”
She backed away enough to free him, licked a last drop from the tip, swallowed and said finally, “For you to say what’s next.”
“Then take it back in.”
She blinked but leaned forward obediently.
“That’s right,” he said. “Suck it very gently. I like it in your mouth.”
She held the pose, working her tongue slowly.
He sighed. “I like it, but now I want you to talk. Tell me again how much you’ve sucked Jericho.”
She withdrew completely and finally lowered her eyes. “I’s been doing it just about every evening. Else he’d make me fuck.”
“Didn’t you want him to?”
She sighed. “Oh, yes, Massa! But I just frigs. Mama looks up me every time I comes in to bed.”
“When you suck, do you always swallow the juice?”
“No, Sah. Ain’t no place to spit in here. But old gals say swallowing don’t hurt.”
“They’re right about that. Always swallow mine.”
“How many other ones have you caught the juice from?”
“Just one. I didn’t lie about that. Only been two. Two black ones and now a white one.”
“Have you been sucking the other one every night too?”
“Not every night. Is you gonna make me do you a lot?”
“No, Fancy. I won’t make you. Do you know about ‘bedmates?’”
She hesitated. “I hears the word: for gals that lies in massas’ beds.”
“That’s right. They give help of a personal nature, from making sure his bed’s made, his nightjar is emptied, his clothes are clean — hell, making sure he’s clean by helping in his bath — to sucking and fucking whenever he needs it. And whoever he says, in case he has an important visitor. Bedmates live in the big house, usually sleep with the master, and do no other work. Mother didn’t allow that custom here, but she no longer makes the rules. I saw how my roommate lived at school. He had two bedmates and often shared with me. Maybe he’ll visit so I can return the favor.”
“‘Two bedmates,’” she said with a frown.
“Or more, but you’ll be first. You can help pick the others.”
She swallowed again. “You gonna make me your bedmate?”
“No, Fancy,” he declared impatiently. “Not make. I’m offering you the job.”
“I can say no?” Her eyes were very direct.
“You can. But you’re the prettiest girl on the place. I’d hate it if you did.”
“And send me to Jensen for a whipping?”
“I’d send you back to work in the cotton field.”
“You mean, if I’s a bedmate I don’t goes to the fields?”
“Never again. At least, not so long as you try to please me.”
“Does I …” Her eyes dropped. “Please you, Massa James?”
“You suck better than the whores in Atlanta. It helps to practice every night, doesn’t it? You definitely please me, Fancy.”
“Would I please your brother?”
He sniffed. “Probably not, but don’t worry. He’s off in London trying to spend last year’s cotton profit. God only knows when he’ll come home. Anyway, you’ll be my bedmate, not his. What’s your answer, Fancy?”
“It’s what Mama saves my poon for.”
She took a very deep breath. “I’s your bedmate, Sah.”
“Great! Now stand up and throw off that shift so I can measure you for better clothes.”
While she laid the garment over his folded britches, he retrieved a tape measure, pad and pencil from a desk drawer. Measuring breasts, waist, hips and shoulder height, he noted each result on the pad.
He smiled while squeezing a breast. “Very nice, my dear, and I like the responsive nipple. So will your babes.”
“My babies? You gonna put them in me, Massa?”
“I shall certainly try, Fancy.”
“Mama says I gonna catch easy. What will happen to them?”
“Your babes? Well, do you know our man, Robert, what he does for us?”
“The white man that bends over books?”
He chuckled. “Yes, but not quite white. He’s Pops’ get. If yours are as smart as I expect, they’ll go to school too. Like Robert, they can earn their freedom.”
Her eyes enlarged briefly and she licked her lips.
He shoved the shirt tails behind him and resumed his seat. The wet head of his drooping organ glittered in the window light.
He pointed to the floor. “Get back down there and suck me.”
“So soon?” But she obeyed willingly.
“You don’t have to work at it. Fold your legs and sit on the cushion.”
She obeyed further, leaned forward and remouthed him, studying his face to verify her correctness.
“Very good.” He smiled at her and picked up the book. “My roommate liked to have his gal suck him while he studied. I believe I may come to share his opinion.”
She released him long enough to ask, “How long is I gonna do this, Massa?”
“Why not all afternoon? I’d think a cock in your mouth here in this cool room beats a hoe in your hands out in the hot field. Don’t you agree?”
Her eyes smiled and she nodded fiercely with the sound of a slurp.