Alex and the Tiger
© 2002 by Jon Hold

Sex is somewhat incidental in this one. But then, sex is pretty incidental in most of our lives, isn't it.

Alex and the Tiger

Alex was bored. Naturally hyperactive and inquisitive. "Always into something" as his father was always saying. Raised by a protective mother until he hit puberty, and by his somewhat distant father since then, as was done in all the better Elven families, Alex was at a bit of a loss as how, exactly, he ought to be acting. His father was the cultural attache to the peace mission currently on Fugwar, the Tiger capitol world. And Alex didn't know what to do.

Elvish people were of pure Earthman descent but adapted to a planet with almost incessant rainfall, highly telempathic fauna, and a combination of heavy gravity and high spin rate that resulted in the average Elven height of a little over four feet and extremely powerful muscle tissue with so many z-bands that it almost never tired. Acute hearing and ears pointed to deflect the rain came as standard equipment with the majority of Alex's people.

The Tigers were an entirely different proposition. They had developed totally independently of Earth and it's "monkey's". They resembled nothing quite so much as a bipedal, fine fingered, 7+ foot Tiger with a short unicorn's horn in the middle of its forehead. Extremely territorial and belligerent, the Tiger's first response to meeting humans in space was to take care of the basic chemical and biological testing and then to have lunch --- with the humans providing the first, and only, course. It had taken years of battle and a rejoining together of all the branches of the human race to convince the Tigers that eating people was a No-no of the highest order and that peaceful co-existence was not only possible, but greatly to be desired.

The Tigers were not, as many humans thought, brutal and savage animals. True, their background was carnivorous rather than omnivorous, but they had a highly sophisticated culture with art forms and literature to be respected, if not admired, as Alex's father did. Personal adornment was one of the most sophisticated of the Tiger arts, indulged in by all Tigers, regardless of wealth, status or class.

Alex was vastly curious about the Tigers, but was confined to his fathers rooms at the Embassy by the Earthman who was the main Ambassador to the Tigers. Sitting on the ledge of a window, pouting, feeling misunderstood and abused, Alex watched the silent ground behind the Embassy that led to the forty-foot walls of the Imperial Palace. He had never seen anything larger than a moth moving in that "protected zone" since arriving. Alex suddenly froze. Nothing moved except the iris' of his extremely light-sensitive eyes. Protected zone it might be, but there was something down there now, and it was stealthy moving towards the palace. Wearing his normal attire which was the dark maroon hair on his head and the solid gold torque around his neck, Alex slipped out of the window and walked the power line to the compound wall. Easing his way silently through the strongly broad-limbed trees, Alex was soon above the movement he had spotted. His eyes widened as he finally recognized the full-grown male Tiger through it's camouflage. It was staring right at him.

Putting a single long needle-clawed finger to his lips in what was obviously a command to be silent, the Tiger pointed to the ground in front of him. Alex may have been young, and would freely admit that he did not have a tremendous amount of experience, but he wasn't brain dead and his momma didn't raise no fools. Everyone knew that for all they looked like cats, the Tiger's were entirely to heavy to be much good at climbing trees. Alex was about as likely to leave the safety of his tree as he was to fly to the moon by flapping his arms.

The Tiger suddenly ducked deeper under some bushes and Alex's ears swiveled forward and heard the unmistakable sound of one of the city's armed and armored roving patrols. But what were they doing in this forbidden area? Looking, perhaps, for a certain cat that was currently hiding less than 20 feet from Alex? Ah! But the game was now afoot, and Alex was no longer bored. Teasing the city police was an old game, one that Alex particularly excelled at, and reveled in. Looking down at the cat, Alex put HIS finger up to his lips and made a shooing motion with his other hand. The Tiger faded even further into the darkness under the bushes until all that Alex could see was the angry green glow of two focused eyes. Grinning, Alex waived and was off about his play.

Forty-five minutes later Alex returned to his roost. It was obvious that the Tiger had left. As much fun as leading the patrol astray had been, Alex had been looking forward to teasing the missing Tiger. Sighing in resignation of the nights fun being over, Alex looked up to see what time it was by the stars. There, on the limb above him, was the Tiger, needle sharp claws within easy reach of Alex's head.

Alex very nearly fell out of the tree in surprise. He was even more surprised when the Tiger softly growled in very clear English, "Do not fall out of your own tree, Little One. Why did you lead the Ta'fat from me?"

"The patrol?"

"Yes, the Ta'fat warriors who sought my blood."

"I didn't know they were that serious! But I was bored. And leading them in circles seemed like a good game."

Golden eyes stared fixedly at Alex. Unblinking, unchanging, unnerving. Alex grinned, tried to look both innocent and cute, and tried to laugh, but that came out sounding like he was about to have an epileptic fit. All that he could pick up with his rudimentary telempathic sense was intense curiosity. Curiosity so strong it felt like it was burning at that funny place inside of Alex's head.

"Come with me." ordered the big yellow cat as it dropped in one smooth movement to the ground and, without looking behind, padded silently off towards the Palace wall.

Alex stood silently on his tree limb, trying to imagine what was happening. Curiosity, ever the monkey's downfall, won --- and Alex followed the Tiger into his den.

Alex had to join the Tiger on the ground for the last hundred meters, that much ground having been cleared of every living thing except a short mat of some grass-like plant. Alex was wondering how they were going to climb the apparently perfectly smooth ogive curve of what appeared to be some sort of ombri green olivine-like material. There was a bare glow of light when the Tiger touched the wall with one wide-spread hand and, suddenly, there was a darkly threatening ogive arch leading into the wall. Reluctant, but afraid to show his fear, Alex followed the Tiger into the darkness which seemed to flow together behind them.

The cat's quarters were plosh. Very plosh. Finely woven and sensuously smooth fabrics covered everything. Greens and blues mixing with soft grays and subtle browns. The Tiger had no more than sealed the hole through the wall, leaving Alex wondering just how that was done when the room was suddenly filled with half-a-dozen Tiger females, who apparently did not approve of Alex or is presence, and let it be known with grumbles and hard, hissed words. Their Lord and Master grumbled a few words in cat and they quickly left.

Collapsing onto a pile of cushions and pillows, the Tiger stared at Alex, only to be stared at himself with equal intensity.

"What am I to do with you, Earthman?" the massive feline ponderously asked.

"I'm not an Earthman! I'm Elvish!" Alex demanded, realizing suddenly that he was, in fact, proud of his heritage and was unwilling to let this beast think otherwise.

"Yes," the Tiger said with a very human sounding chuckle. "The beautifully long and pointed ears and the distinct lack of clothing, other than the ostentatious gold you wear around your neck.

'Ostentatious!' Alex thought to himself, looking at the "Well dressed" Tiger in front of him. Each of two chest nipples was pierced by a golden ring, with their third piercing his left nostril. His three-and-a-half-inch left fang was emblazoned with three more golden rings, one at the base, one in the middle and a third nearly at the end of the sharply pointed dentition. The horn on the cat's forehead was similarly bound with three golden rings and additionally had two rings set vertically into the horn between each of the lower divisions that were joined by a small chain of nine links. Alex knew that the third vertical ring would not be added to the Tiger's horn until he had met an honorable death..

All in all, very imposing, except that Alex knew that the slightly flattened Torque around his neck was three solid kilograms of absolutely pure gold while the rings the Tiger wore were only a thin gold plating on aluminum tubing. The Tiger planets were very poor in heavy metals and Alex had heard that a major bone of contention at the peace talks was the cats reluctance to speak of their severe need for heavy metals, fuel metals as well as the gold to make the ornaments that were religiously, socially and politically so important in their culture. A kit could not become a man until he had somehow acquired the gold for the first three rings that were to be placed on his chest and through his nose. Through his nipples to prove his courage and ability to withstand pain stoically. Through his nose to prove his loyalty to his Lord. This cat was obviously an older cat, and quite successful, as he wore all twelve rings, even if the last was merely worn around a finger.

"Sit" the Tiger ordered, pointing to a place on the cushions near himself.

Alex stiffened his back at the order. "I don't take orders from a cat!" He said, knowing that he was insulting his "host". "And besides that, It's time I was getting home, so, if you'll let me out of here..."

Grinning with way too many teeth, the Tiger propped his head on one hand and looked this immature specimen of the enemy over with fresh eyes. He knew that the small patch of dark red-brown hair over the boys genitals meant that he was a mature male, but he also knew that this must be the son of the cultural attache, they being the only two Elvens on the planet. He also knew that the attache considered his son a child and most decidedly NOT a warrior to be casually slaughtered for insolence.

"Please... Sit," Ar'man~th said. "I would converse with you and learn more of your race and home. I am... well... a bit of a scholar, I suppose."

Alex grinned and flopped down on the cushions as only a teenager can. He then curled up and made himself every bit as comfortable as the cat obviously was. Alex was at that age where he was willing to experiment with almost anything. The more he laid there and watched his new friend the more entranced he became. Tall and powerful, Ar'man~th (a name that Alex surprised the cat with by pronouncing it well, as few humans could), was a vital, alive being with a vastly inquisitive mind. Willing to answer one of Alex's questions for every one he asked, and received an answer for, the strong, lithe, beautifully colored being was so purely masculine as to steal Alex's breath away.

Alex noticed, repeatedly, that in many ways Ar'man~th was very different than any Earth cat. The most noteworthy of those differences, to Alex, was the cats sex organs, which were much more like a dogs or a horses than a cats. A thick sheath, short coupled like a horses but closed at the end and fur covered like a dogs lay between the Tigers rear legs backed up by the largest set of nuts Alex had ever drooled over. The plush fur covering the cat did not thin over the genitals, but somehow managed to accentuate the organs instead of hiding them.

In their talk the cat openly exhibited an intense curiosity about human sexuality. Alex, being deeply involved in exploring his own recently discovered sexuality, was only to willing to talk at great length about something that he had read a great deal about, but had little personal experience of. Elven folk had little personal modesty and Alex was only too happy to show his new friend his body and how it worked. How, normally, his sex organs hung out in open display. How Elvish people had adapted and could pull penis and testicles inside the body cavity to protect them in trees or bush or when fighting. With a few strokes Alex even produced an erection for his friends edification and enlightenment

Ar'man~th was amazed at Alex's ability to stimulate himself to erection, and absolutely flabbergasted when Alex described, and demonstrated, masturbation. Ar'man~th explained that no Tiger could masturbate. The stimulation of another was required for erection to occur. And since Tiger females came into season only once a year, sex was restricted to one mass glut of sexual behavior once a year. This, Ar'man~th further explained, was one of the main problems that Tiger society had to deal with. The males were ready all year long, but the females were not and the class of beings who, in ancient times, had nurtured and cared for the breeding males had all been foolishly destroyed by a megalomanic trying to gain control of the entire race.

Alex was intrigued. "You mean. That is... Well, you can't get off unless some female is ready?"

Resignedly, sadly, Ar'man~th agreed.

"When you Tigers have sex, are you like Earth cats?" blushing, Alex continued, "I mean... do you make a lot of noise and bite and scratch and all like that?"

Ar'man~th looked at Alex, a strange look on his face. "No, cub! Not like that. No woman would have a mate who acted with such lack of propriety."

"So..." Alex said quietly, moving over closer to the Tiger to speak in a conspiratorial whisper, "you don't bite and scratch when you're having sex?"

"No!" Ar'man~th stated with aspersion.

"And how..." Alex continued in an even quieter, more intimate voice, "... do you feel about homosexuality?"

Puzzled, Ar'man~th asked, "What's that?"

Grinning, Alex cuddled up close to the cat so he could continue in a very intimate manner, "That's when two men, two males, have sex together."

Seemingly stunned, Ar'man~th sat there staring at Alex. Not in anger, Alex was sure, but in puzzlement. Ar'man~th was having to think hard to deal with something that was pretty obviously a new concept to him. Finally, thoughtfully, Ar'man~th shared. "A major problem in our society is the constant friction and challenging between males. We are driven to sequester as many females as possible so that when it is time to breed we will have adequate females. Males are therefore in constant turmoil, trying to gather in new females while protecting those they already have. The best of our youth dies every year trying to take females from older, wiser and more treacherous males, leaving weaker, less driven males to inherit and breed an ever weakened race. We are, very much our own worst enemies."

"So..." Alex went on thoughtfully, snuggling right up to Ar'man~th's side so he could speak confidentially into the big cat's ear, "...you don't mind having sex, it just isn't available to you?"

Nodding, the cat said, "You understand."

Rubbing up against the hardness of the cat's solid body, Alex grinned. "Have any of the other humans ever told you, or any Tiger, how beautiful we think you are."

"Beautiful?"

"Yes." Running his hands through the thick fur of his new friend, Alex buried his nose in the plush softness. "Mmmmmm. You smell good too!"

"UH. mmrrrrweeek." The somewhat flustered Ar'man~th squeaked out.

"Mummmmm. Yeah!" Alex purred with delight.

Ar'man~th showed admirable restraint in that he did not immediately kill Alex when the boy touched him. Except when mating or fighting, Tigers never touched. Never! Deceptively relaxed, Ar'man~th watched Alex as the human explored his body. No matter his personal control the primitive part of Ar'man~th's body was trembling with rage and looking for the tiniest sign of aggression so that it could drive Ar'man~th over the edge and slaughter this presumptuous pallid pantywaist. Ar'man~th's harsh training and, for his people, unbelievably strong self-control was all that stood between Alex and oblivion.

Largely unaware of the ragged edge Ar'man~th was walking, Alex none-the-less had a certain amount of tension himself. He had never actually initiated a sexual meeting before. Well, he'd done his reading, of course. And had paid attention during all of his sexuality and human interaction classes. But he'd never met anyone that aroused more than a passing, playful curiosity. Not until Ar'man~th that is. The cat had a sense of power about him that Alex found impossible to resist. Once Alex got past his reticence he was quickly swallowed up in his own sensuous reactions to the feel of Ar'man~th's lush pelt and the hard muscled body under its thick richness. The smell of the big cat, especially when Alex buried his face in the silken fur, was like the most powerful aphrodisiac Alex could imagine. Certainly more powerful than any of the methyl compounds Alex had been allowed to sniff and test in school.

When Alex finally touched Ar'man~th's fur-covered sheath Ar'man~th had to freeze solid to keep his reflexes from tearing Alex to shreds. Dark-red head fur was all Ar'man~th saw as Alex watched Ar'man~th's reaction to Alex's manipulations. When Alex cupped a soft warm hand around the cats truly impressive testicles, the small human offshoot looked up at his ever more intimate friend and smiled.

"This is so cool, Ar'man~th."

"Where did you learn to pronounce my language so well?" Ar'man~th queried, trying anything to get his mind off of the responses the human was causing.

Alex grinned, "I'm good at languages, and there hasn't been a lot else to do locked away in my father's rooms. Besides, your language isn't all that difficult. I just have to hiss a lot!"

A grin that would have terrified his enemies spread across the cats face as he put a hand on Alex's head. "You are presumptuous and impulsive. This is not wise among my people."

"Why not? Are your people so weak that they cannot trust each other. Not even to make love to each other? Or does your society punish men who love other men?"

Ar'man~th laughed. Quite a terrible laugh actually. One that obviously didn't get a lot of exercise. "Sex has nothing to do with it. For one Ta'a male to touch another is a challenge to battle."

"Then you are fools." Alex boldly pronounced.

Ar'man~th stared at him, and Alex froze, realizing that he had, perhaps, not been exactly diplomatic to call someone as large and naturally well-armed as Ar'man~th a fool. Alex gulped and awaited Ar'man~th's reaction.

A thoughtful nod. And then a slow, thoughtful, drawn out, "Yes... I can see what you are trying to say. Let me tell you a story about my people. It is said that in very ancient times my people were even more violent than they are now. But that there was a class of males who were subservient to the dominant males. These males met and attached themselves to the strongest male they could. If the dominant were strong enough and the submissive smart enough, they could rule the race. Competition was fierce and something happened. We know little of "The Troubles" today, but we do know that the matelote, the male wives of the powerful disappeared and have not returned to our society. I suspect that we lost a lot in that transition."

"Do you think the matelote made love with their masters?"

"That was the control they had. The sex drive in my people is powerful. Only by the matelote's releasing of the dominant males drive was it possible for the dominant males to coexist."

"Then," Alex quietly asked, looking down at the warm sheath he held in both hands, and then back up to the imposing Tiger, "...you don't mind...?"

Ar'man~th reached down and ran deadly sharp claws gently through Alex's thick hair, just barely stimulating his scalp as he did so. "If you are willing to be subservient to me... Then, no. I don't mind you touching me down there. Do you wish to be Matelote to me?"

Alex just grinned and pulled down on Ar'man~th's sheath, exposing the pink tip of what was hidden inside. Alex had experimented with some of his school chums so he pretty much knew what he was doing. Smiling happily, eager for a new experience, Alex pointed his tongue and dipped down inside the hairy opening and got his first taste of cat.

Ar'man~th rolled his belly and something like eight inches of cockhead and shaft slid out of the enclosing sheath. Alex grinned even wider and closely inspected the gift Ar'man~th was making him. Using his tongue to confirm shapes and sizes, Alex most carefully and minutely explored the center of his new playground.

Brightly pink and shining with juices from the sheath, Ar'man~th's penis was fascinating to Alex. Thicker, stouter than any he had seen or heard of before, the cat's hot organ was not unlike a humans, but not truly alike either. Where a humans glans tended to spread like an opened mushroom, Ar'man~th's glans was more like a morel mushroom with the cap elongate and fitting closely down the shaft although it was attached only near the end of the shaft. Alex ran his tongue up under the cap and was rewarded with a mouthful of thick, rich flavor. Licking his lips, Alex dug in for more with fervent enthusiasm.

Ar'man~th caught his breath and held it, trying to control himself instead of reacting like a cub just entering manhood. His attempt at control was a wasted effort and he grabbed the humans head and back to hold him in place as his body convulsed and his senses sharpened to pinpoints while his mind fogged with his race's age-old response to orgasm. Shaking and shuddering, neither human or feline noticed as the four long claws of the cat's right hand smoothly penetrated through the skin of Alex's back.

Alex did his best to hold his mouth over the end of the erupting organ. Swallowing as hard and as fast as possible Alex was still unable to keep up with the offering from his new playmate. Thick rich juice from Ar'man~th's great balls erupted from Alex's nose and he coughed, cat sperm spraying against cat fur. The cat cum was more acrid than the human sperm Alex had drunk in his youthful experimentations with his school chums, and yet, at the same time, it was sweeter and richer. More desirable. The flavor was definitely a plus as far as Alex was concerned and the obviously intense pleasure he was giving the cat pleased Alex no end.

While the big cat was laying back in his cushions, shuddering all over and trying to catch his breath. Alex carefully licked Ar'man~th's wonderful cock clean and guided it back into its sheath, the wonderfully smooth shape of the cockhead sliding neatly past the fur rimmed lips of the still distended sheath. Once the last of the cockhead disappeared into the furry warmth of its home, Alex most carefully licked all the excess cum off of Ar'man~th's belly, making sure that each and every hair was spotlessly clean.

The cat was in ecstasy. A powerfully self-controlled person, and breeding season barely three months gone, neither he nor his body had any expectation of sexual release for another seven of the forty-day months his people used. Finally coming to his senses, light gleaming fiercely in his tawny-gold eyes, Ar'man~th looked down at the human who was still lying naked between his legs.

Alex looked right back up at the big cat, realizing, for the first time, that to have access to the palace this way, he must be very highly placed in the royalty of the Ta'a. Respectfully, but with a gleam of mischief around his eyes and a barely hidden grin quivering around his lips that not even a member of another race could miss, Alex quietly asked, "Uh, you're not mad at me are you Lord Ar'man~th?"

The fierce Tiger, tall and powerful and very, very imposing, shocked Alex by winking at him. Alex didn't even know that Tigers knew how to make that all too human gesture.

Ar'man~th pulled a length of chain that hung from behind some ornamental work on the wall and he and Alex were quickly joined by a half-a-dozen women, several Tigers who were obviously on-duty guards and one grizzled old veteran with some of the most imposing scars Alex had ever seen. Ar'man~th spat and growled at them in pure High Ta'teth. Alex had studied hard with his memotrainer, but some of the language Ar'man~th was using he had never heard before. Most likely a shortcoming in the human knowledge of Ta'teth. From what Alex was picking up, he was apparently being declared a subject vassal of the High Lord Ar'man~th. 'High Lord', thought Alex. 'Oh, shit!'. Alex had, somehow, managed to impose upon, and impress one of perhaps twenty Tigers that ruled the entire Ta'a. Gulping, Alex strained to understand what was happening.

The old warrior looked disgusted, but obeyed his master. The young guards just looked at Alex as if he were some sort of vastly interesting, but noxious insect. The women quickly left and just as quickly returned with even more women bearing food and drink and sweet little candies that consisted for the most part of various caramelized small animals. Alex was cuddled against Lord Ar'man~th's side. The women made an effort to speak English, but were no where nearly as accomplished as their lord and master. Alex was pretty sure that the guards didn't understand a word of Universal English. He was just as sure that, even though he refused to utter even one word of the foreign language, the old warrior understood everything that was said. Alex was told everyone's name and rank within the family, the old warrior was the Lord's principle advisor and the first six women who had entered the room his principal wives.

One of Ar'man~th's wives wanted to know why Alex was wearing a huge fortune in gold around his neck instead of giving it to his lord who needed the wealth so desperately. Ar'man~th growled something brief in very low Ta'teth and the female stiffened and then immediately left the room. A short time later everyone else left, the females taking the last of the food and drink with them.

When the last door latched shut, Alex climbed over Ar'man~th until he was sitting astride the big cat's lap, leaning his head against the broad expanse of thickly muscled chest, Alex sighed and wiggled his way into the warm fur. "Did you tell them that I was your matelote?"

Ar'man~th looked quizzically at Alex. "Is there a problem with that?"

Alex sighed, pushed himself upright and looked the big Tiger right in the eye. "Your Universal is very good, but do you actually know what 'matelote' means?"

"Yesssss," Ar'man~th hissed, obviously not pleased with the direction this little talk was taking. "I do most certainly know. It is a sailor's wife. A very polite way of saying that you are the male mate of another male. But then..." and Ar'man~th glared at Alex as his broad tongue wrapped around one four inch fang and licked it clean, "...it also means 'Fish Stew'. Which definition do YOU prefer?" he asked with no intention of sounding frivolous. Alex was quite aware that the Tiger was on the edge of a rage that could easily lead to Alex's death.

Alex disengaged himself from the powerful cat and stood within easy swinging distance of him on the polished floor. "If you cannot listen to me without becoming angry. If you cannot allow me to ask a question, any question, without wanting to kill me. If you are willing to make decisions for both of us without even consulting me. Then I am no matelote to you. I am a whore and a slave, no better. AND I WILL NEVER BE A SLAVE. KILL ME NOW! OR ALLOW ME TO LEAVE IN SHAME AND NEVER RETURN!"

Alex was truly angry. His people were very flexible sexually, morally and socially. Highly adaptable to other people's life-styles. But no Elven person could be forced to do anything against his or her will. Their strength of character and powerful will allowed them to stop their own hearts and die rather than submit. Alex was perfectly willing to die. Angry, but fearless, he confronted the awesome war beast in front of him and defied the monster to abrogate his will.

A grin, a true smile spread across Ar'man~th's face for the first time in many years. Laughing deep in his chest, he put one hand under Alex's balls and dandled them on needlepoint claws. "Yes, my little one does have balls of his own. Well said, young one. Well said! And that was the final thing I needed to know. You do have a will of your own. A mind and opinion of your own. If we are to be partners, you must be the thinking half of our pairing. Always on the alert to warn me when I become thoughtless or too passionate. This you have done, and will learn to do even better.

"I ask you, formally, Alex, will you be my life partner. Share our wealth and honor between us as needed. Always honest with each other. Always with our mutual best interest at heart. Can you accept these terms?"

Alex thought. Then carefully replied, "You are asking me to make a commitment my people do not normally make until they are many years older than me. You are asking me to make a decision without consulting my father, who is still responsible for me. Is it your intent to beguile me into thinking I am more mature than I am so that I'll make a decision in your favor?"

Ar'man~th laughed, and then suddenly became very serious and leaned forward his broad nose and muzzle twitching. "No one, I think, will ever beguile you young Elven. I ask you to join me in partnership. We will learn and grow together. This is your decision. Not your fathers. If you are mature enough to make the decision, you will. If not, you are free to leave and I will deal with the minor loss of face with ease. But, it will not, I think, be in any way easy to live without you now that I know what you can do for me, and I for you."

Alex barely hesitated before crawling back up, straddling Ar'man~th's lap and burying his face back against the Tigers chest. "Yes. You will listen to me. But I shall listen to you as well, for I would bring you honor, and fight to the death at your side should the need be."

"Well said. Well said!" Ar'man~th said as he wrapped his arms around the slight boy.

"OK. Then I accept YOU as MY matelote!"

Ar'man~th burst out laughing. A thing that had not happened in many years. "Yes, it does work both ways, doesn't it!"

The guards burst into the room and Ar'man~th, still laughing, waived them out.

"Tell me something, Lord Ar'man~th." Alex said looking up at his newly acquired mate. Still chuckling, Ar'man~th just nodded his head, 'Yes'. "Do the Ta'a bite and scratch the way Earth cats do when breeding?"

Ar'man~th looked puzzled, and then replied, "No we do not bite or scratch at such a time. Breeding is not fighting. We bite and scratch when fighting. When breeding we lick and stroke each other to stimulate desire and to prepare our bodies for the greatest of pleasures."

"Good. Because I do not like getting bitten, and I'm horny as hell!"

"Horny?"

"Yeah. Horney!" Alex grinned and ground his bare butt down on Ar'man~th's sheath, causing the pink nose of the hidden organ to peep out and briefly kiss the little eye winking at it from between Alex's lean backside.

Ar'man~th grunted amorously and stroked Alex's back. "I do not think you are large enough back there for someone of my size."

Alex ground down against Ar'man~th again. "I'm no virgin, you know. And I've got a friend, a good friend, who says that really big ones feel the best."

"Yes. But your friend is not here and it is you who would have to take this thing, and I do not wish to destroy you."

"Then you are going to have to be very gentle, aren't you..."

For a long time Alex and Ar'man~th were silent except for low moans and groans and whimpering and the sound of a cat tongue and soft hand pads caressing bare skin.

Ar'man~th slowly erected and slid forth from his sheath. Alex sat on Ar'man~th's slowly emerging heat shuddered and twisted as his passage was opened. Ar'man~th soothing and slowing the human who was suddenly so important to him. If this human could truly take the place of the Matelote's of the past, and if there were others like him, then Ar'man~th could see a real chance for his race to fit into the wide-spread commercial and social structure they so envied --- and needed. Perhaps this boy, this eager, bright, active, thinking being was the answer his people had been searching for.

Lost in the euphoria of their joining, neither actually noticed when their union was completed. During the protracted sex act that followed, Alex noted that the smooth bud of the morel shaped cockhead had radically changed after insertion. The broad upper surface had tightened and hardened, pulling the entire rim of tissue up until it spread open like an umbrella, except that this umbrella was almost rock hard and had a fringe of stiff, but flexible, pointy little fingers sticking out that made Alex convulse with pleasure when Ar'man~th started to gently fuck him. Alex quickly discovered that playing with the cats horn was a major turn-on for the cat, and that licking his ears could drive the little pussy crazy! Laughing, Alex held onto Ar'man~th's fangs, which were longer than his handgrip, and pulled the Tigers head down so he could drive his pointy tongue into the highly mobile ear as he bounced up and down on the Tigers lap.

Ar'man~th was still cumming inside of the closely held Alex when he passed out.

It took a while, but Ar'man~th's cock finally deflated and, slowly, Alex was able to carefully inch it out of his ravaged, and now quite sore ass. Smiling to himself, he knew he was going to be back for more of this... over and over again. Never had he been so sore, or felt so good. He rolled off of Ar'man~th's cushions and pulled the chain on the wall.

Ar'man~th's main wife, Taez/but# by name (if you really want to pronounce this the "/" is a sliding "s" sound and the # is sort of a phpppth sound with a growl in it. Spit, choke and gargle at the same time and you've got it.) opened the door almost immediately, one of the guards looking over her shoulder. Holding a finger to his lips in the universal sign for silence, Alex slipped through the door. He dismissed the guard and, much to his surprise, the guard immediately obeyed. Taez/but# just looked at him appraisingly.

"I need to go to my home and get some things. Can you open the portal that Ar'man~th used earlier?"

"Yes. But why should I."

Considering carefully. Putting it all on the line, sink or swim, Alex looked the imposing female straight in the eye and said, "Because I order it."

Surprise flicked across Taez/but#'s face and then something else. Something Alex would have called 'hope' had he seen it on a human face. Bowing her head, Taez/but# simply said, "This way, Man Sire".

Taez/but# and Alex stood at the open portal. "I will be two hours going and coming." Alex said.

"In two hours, I will open the portal for two minutes. No more! It is very dangerous for others to know of this portal."

"In two hours then." Alex said with a nod as he disappeared into the darkness, silent even to the ears of the hunting cat who hopefully watched him disappear.

Two hours later, in the confusing light of imminent dawn, Taez/but# opened the portal and looked fearfully around for the enemy's the Elven human may have brought down on her house. A patch of grass first shimmered in the weak light and then flowed through the portal.

"Close the gate. They are searching for me out there."

Taez/but# quickly backed up and closed the portal, hurrying down the passage so that it could close as well and cloak the very existence of any such technology in the supposedly unbreachable wall surrounding the Imperial palace. "Come, small one. The council awaits."

Alex decided that he liked the way Taez/but# said, 'small one'. It gave him a warm, fuzzy feeling.

The council was, indeed, in session when Alex arrived. Perhaps twenty Tigers, including the old warrior from the night before and Taez/but# surrounded Ar'man~th. Sitting on cushions and discussing, almost arguing, great heat being generated at times as they discussed what to do at the great meeting later that day between all of the clan leaders and the humanoid delegation.

The consensus was that Bru/trum, clan leader of the Ta'fat clan, had been stirring much unrest and resentment, especially among the lesser clans and that it was quite possible that the peace talks might end up a blood bath, which would suit Bru/trum and the Ta'fat just fine.

As they were circling around to cover the same ground yet a third time, with no resolution in sight, when Alex cleared his throat and broke in, "May I speak?"

Immediate resentment flared. Not only was a human allowed into council, now he wanted to speak? Only the old warrior and Taez/but# kept silent.

Ar'man~th slapped clawed hand to rock-hard thigh. A burst of High Ta'teth burst from Ar'man~th's lips and then he continued more calmly in English, "This is, Alex. We are Tus#kupn`th, matelote as Alex's people would say. He obey's me, and you will obey him no less than I do, which is completely.

Stated that way Ar'man~th was making our relationship a point of honor. Alex knew that he would have to be very careful to not say anything in a way that sounded like a command to Ar'man~th unless he truly meant it to be a command, because he would obey it, no matter what.

Bowing to the old warrior, Alex spoke softly, "Excuse me honored warrior. But I am ignorant, and seek your council that I might serve our master."

Nodding in acknowledgment of the neat turn of phrase, the old warrior grinned, "Yes. Ask your questions, Pup. What do you need to understand."

"Let me see if I understand. Bru/trum and his clan stand against Ar'man~th. He wishes war for his own purposes? True?"

The old warrior simply nodded in the affirmative.

The other clans will go as their leaders tell them, but the minor clans especially are in great need of gold and will do what they must to get what they need?"

Looking at this small human, the old warrior reevaluated his feelings about his Lord's choice. This "child" was no child. No fool and certainly no coward. Again, he nodded in affirmation.

"Pride then, and fear of showing weakness before the humans, precludes asking for that which our people must have to survive?

All the males except the old warrior and Ar'man~th rose angrily to their feet. Even the old warrior's fur bristled.

Not backing up one inch, Alex confronted the angry Tigers. "Are my words so wrong then, or are you simply ashamed of me knowing your weakness. That you mush have gold to breed?"

Yowls of anger filled the room until a curt, "Silence" from Ar'man~th quieted the room. Ar'man~th stared at Alex. Pondering the depth of his partners understanding. Looking at 7is council members, he quietly said, "Answer his question. Is he a fool. Or are you shamed by necessity?"

Muttering quietly. Nervously licking their lips. Shooting hateful glances that boded no good for Alex, the councillors started back to their places.

"ANSWER HIM!" Ar'man~th roared.

One by one the councilors complied, admitting shame and anger that an outsider knew of the great problem their race faced. Many centuries in the past the Ta'a had been born and developed on a beautiful productive planet with abundant heavy metals. So abundant and easily available that the Ta'a managed to prove their strength by blowing their home into a radioactive wasteland leaving only the space bourn to survive. Most of the survivors died during the horrible passage to this, their new home. A home so poor in heavy metals that the Ta'a had to wear golden jewelry in order to absorb the trace amounts of gold their metabolisms needed to reproduce.

Alex nodded his head at the answers he received. "Humans are the same. There are minerals and vitamins that they must have to survive, much less breed. Many colonies used to die out because of diary deficiencies until our Health Corps started keeping a better watch on new colonies.

"So the small clans, Tigers of small wealth cannot afford the gold needed for them to breed and survive. You have grown large enough that the population exceeds the amount of gold you can disperse. So the solution to the problem is to acquire more gold, and until you do so, there will be war."

The old warrior nodded his head at the clear and succinct summation of this amazing young being. His agreement was quickly joined by the others.

"And this," Alex turned to Ar'man~th and pointed to the three pound gold torque around his neck, "could solve your current problems. Yet you refused to take it from me."

"It is yours to give, or not give, as you choose." Ar'man~th answered very solemnly.

"It is not." Alex answered. Growls and grumbles of dissatisfaction powdering the air. "This torque is my family's honor. It is mine to carry only until I pass in on to my son, who will pass it on to his. Even if I wanted to, I could not give it to you. Even to save your race."

Unhappy as they obviously were, the council understood duty. Understood honor. But they also understood that their race had to survive, and if that meant war, or the death of one small and insignificant human, well then, so be it."

Alex let the realization of life, as it truly was, penetrate... and for silence to return.

"But there is nothing that tells me what to do with what is mine --- except me."

With that, Alex swept the forest green cloak he was wearing back over his shoulders. His torque sat firmly in the golden gorget that surmounted sixty pounds of gold link mail that covered Alex in formal dress from shoulders to mid-arm and down in a skirt that reached to his knees. Around his waist was a belt woven of platinum and gold strands that supported a gilded scabbard, the open fretwork of which exposed the razor sharpness and beauty of the hand forged iridium blade to the lustfully acquisitive stares of all present. Grasping a grip of precious gems sunk into the gold and ivory of the handle of his sword, Alex drew it. Guards and warriors alike started forward to protect their Lord and master, only to be stopped by his gesture. Alex put the point of his sword to the polished stone floor, knelt and looked Ar'man~th straight in the face. "What is mine. Is yours." was all he said.

Laying the sword down at Ar'man~th's feet, Alex stood and began removing his armor. Taez/but# and one of her co-wives moved forward to assist Alex in removing the heavy armor.

Ar'man~th sat. Holding the shimmering gold cloth in one hand. Thoughtfully, he looked up from the possible salvation of his life and his people to Alex. "So this is mine."

"No." Alex answered. "It is mine. Is there a difference."

Ar'man~th sat there in profound silence.

The old warrior slapped Alex on the back, very nearly knocking him to the ground. "Well said, young master! Well said!"

Murmurs of agreement came from the council.

"Such a gift no Ta'a in memory has received."

"Each of your counselors and wives would have made you such a gift long ago, had it been possible."

Councilors and wives alike straightened, stood taller and prouder at that statement by this strange human. Ar'man~th realized that he had gotten much, much more than he had dared hope for in this wise young human.

An evil grin spreading across his face, Ar'man~th asked, "Are you going to stand there kissing my councilors asses and stroking my wives fur, or are you going to help me disassemble this into rings that I can distribute to those who prove themselves worthy by turning their backs on the Ta'fat?"

Protestations defending Alex came from the council and Taez/but#, who had been soothing her husband by gently rubbing his neck, sunk a sharp claw into his skin, reminding him that she too was noble born and not one to be teased lightly.

"Peace Woman," Ar'man~th growled as he called for artisans to deal with Alex's magnanimous gift, and his clan's sudden wealth.

Chapter 2

Ar'man~th's senior artesian, a Tiger so old that his fur had faded almost totally to white, almost "traveled to heaven" when confronted by the mass of gold and iridium and platinum. One of his most junior apprentices, a very comely and talented female, embarrassed herself by instinctively trying to mark the find as her own. Everyone politely ignored her quickly leaving the room to bathe and change clothes. Nothing was said when she returned, but she was very quiet even after Ar'man~th honored her by asking the master goldsmith to assign her to Alex's needs.

Alex was surprised when his nipples were quickly pierced by sharp claws and solid gold rings from his now hardly recognizable armor inserted and soldered into solid circles with the join so finely done that it could not be found. He bent his head to admire Til#anth's craftsmanship [NO! I REFUSE to use the word "craftswomanship"] and got his nostril pierced for his trouble. He was still bemoaning his fate while she polished the ring through the side of his nose into a perfect glowing circle. Much discussion about Alex's missing fangs and horn lead to him having his long, mobile, pointed and VERY, VERY sensitive ears pierced, three times down the back of each for golden rings and twice in the front of his right ear for two platinum rings joined by a platinum chain.

Then it was decided that Ar'man~th's rings looked brassy and cheap next to Alex's solid gold. In fact, the gold plating was wearing a bit thin and the underlying light metal was showing through. Ar'man~th stoically endured the removal of rings he had worn his entire adult life and the affixing of new rings made of solid gold, making Ar'man~th look all the more regal. The two vertical rings in his horn and the chain joining them were forged of platinum, to match Alex's.

Ar'man~th picked up a handful of the split open golden rings and looked Alex right in the eye. "With this wealth, I will buy peace for our people. All our people."

Alex nodded in agreement.

The End (It's a good stopping place)

or:

Alex entered the great meeting room of the Imperial Palace of the Ta'a with the rest of Ar'man~th's councilors. All the other clans, their leaders and councilors were also present, as were the diplomats of the humanoids. Everyone mixed together in the large room, talking and fencing verbally. Alex stood, uncomfortable in the sight of members of the human contingent who were, themselves, unsure of what to make of a human, elvin or not, who showed up at an important diplomatic event wearing nothing but a pair of scuffed low boots, a dark green cloak thrown over one shoulder and metal rings through various portions of his anatomy.

Rebuffed by the human delegation, Alex stood in lone pride as the humans tried to ignore him and the Tigers laughed at the presumption of one who made pretense of following their religion, but who hadn't even the necessary anatomy to make the gesture appropriate. Alex ignored all --- but watched and listened carefully to everything around him.

The High Chamberlain grounded his staff three times to signal attention. All present turned to face the dais and not until Ar'man~th and his retinue ascendended the dais and Ar'man~th actually sat on the throne did it dawn on Alex that Ar'man~th, his Ar'man~th. The cat he had been talking to, teasing and sharing body juices with was, in fact, Ta'a'Tanth, King-Emperor and High Priest of all Ta'a. The most powerful of all Tigers. Absolute ruler and, technically able to speak for all Ta'ath. he nominally commanded all nobles and all the military forces under their commands. Such was the theory in any case.

Ar'man~th sat and calmly waited while the crowd sorted itself out and settled it proper positions. Alex was standing, alone and ignored equally by all present, by one of the huge stone pillars that supported the lofty rooms graceful tracery of roof.

When quiet was finally complete, Ar'man~th rumbled in a quiet voice that, somehow, was clearly audible everywhere in the large audience chamber. "Alex. Come here!"

Startled, Alex was walking before he realized what was happening. An angry grumble started. It was coming from both groups. Alex held his head up and walked as calmly as if he were strolling in the park. As he started to climb the stairs it sounded as if some of the Ta'a behind him were having trouble constraining themselves. Alex wondered what he would do when one of them finally leapt on his back. When he reached the top of the dais Ar'man~th smiled at him and then glared around the room. Silencing all who understood the Ta'a and the absolute loyalty and obedience expected in their society.

Ar'man~th pushed on the left armrest of his throne and it folded down. His chief wife, Queen-Empress of the Ta'a#, the mighty Taez/but#, who commanded the absolute loyalty and devotion of the female half of the race. The Ta'a and the Ta'a# seldom joined in joint session, but when they did the course of the entire race was at stake.

Looking around the chamber, most especially at his prime councilors and the assembled Great Lord's of the Ta'a, Ar'man~th nodded his head to Alex and pushed on the right arm of his throne. With a creak of long neglect, the arm folded down, completing the triple throne. Completing the triumvirate that signaled to the faithful that for the first time in Century's their God was present in all of his three forms, nurturer/caregiver, warrior/protector, and priest/thinker.

A sound of silent dismay rolled back and forth through the Tigers building in force until Ha'th*kur*kt, grizzled leader of the Ta'fat and primary contender for the throne, stepped angrily forward.

"What is this naked human doing in the seat of Ta'a'tanth!" he demanded in a voice and tone that was nothing less than a challenge to the throne.

In a higher pitched tone than anyone expected, the formal words of challenge were spoken in clear and unequivocal Ta'teth, "And who are you traitor, to speak to your betters when you should be cleaning cesspits to atone for your crimes against the High Race?"

Shock stunned the room. The humans were not sure, or most of them were not sure, of what was actually happening. The Ta'a present knew that the entire existence of the race of Ta'a was suddenly at stake. The Ta'fat drew close to their leader, the continued existence of their clan suddenly in question. This challenge must be met, in one way or another, or they were all forfeit. The smell of desperation spread. Ha'th*kur*kt himself knew that Alex had been in listening range as he discussed the upcoming assassin with his strike leaders. It never crossed his mind that a naked child of the humans might not only understand Ta'teth, but speak it absolutely fluently, if with an odd accent. None-the-less, he had to have understood every treasonable word Ha'th*kur*kt had uttered.

Ha'a'hur*tath, one of the oldest and most respected of the Ta'a Lords quietly asked, "Ar'man~th. What IS the human doing on the triple throne?"

Asked in such a way, by someone as respected as old Ha'a'hur*tath, the question must be answered.

Ar'man~th rose from his throne, "He is whom I have accepted as my matelote."

Alex arose with Ar'man~th. "He is whom I have accepted as my Matelote."

Taez/but# languidly stretched and then flowed to a standing position. "They are my men. My protectors. The shields of my children and the guardians of my home. You who would challenge the security of the race, stand at ware, for you have met your match!"

"I CHALLENGE! ! !" roared Ha'th*kur*kt, unable to keep his ambition and lust for power in check any longer. "You are incompetent Ar'man~th. You brought us to speak peace with these animals who keep from us that which we might have. You have tried to settle a human catamite on the triple throne and only your death will blot out the dishonor to the Ta'a!"

"You are the only dishonor to here you half-bald cleaner of nursery droppings!"

The Humans, whether they understood what was being said or not, were shocked at the disruption of the peace talks and by one of the delegates children. Ta'a not directly involved in the challenge gave points on the exchange so far to Alex as the clear winner of the verbal phase of the challenge.

Ha'th*kur*kt went out of control at the slur cast upon him by the human. Had another Ta'a made such a statement in the course of a challenge, Ha'th*kur*kt would have known it for the attempt to throw him off balance it was. Such a slur coming from the small naked human was more than Ha'th*kur*kt could stand. With a roar of hatred he charged, the clan Ta'fat quickly following.

In one flowing motion the Elven boy shrugged his cloak off his shoulders and dove headfirst down the stairs leading to the throne. Alex hit the Tigers leg with all the force in his body and sunk his teeth deeply into the back of Ha'th*kur*kt's leg.

As Ha'th*kur*kt stumbled and reached down to rip the annoying man-child from his leg, another set of wickedly sharp and needle-pointed claws removed a four-inch wide section of his throat.

A somewhat battered and bruised Alex was carefully removed from Ha'th*kur*kt's bloody leg. Clan Ta'fat stood in shock. A naked human boy and the High Lord had killed their greatest warrior with little more effort than that needed to kill a small pest. They were now surrounded by the clan of Ar'man~th and all the loyal clans. The end of Clan Ta'fat was neigh.

Ar'man~th, blood still dripping from the right hand that had ripped the life from Ha'th*kur*kt's throat returned to his throat. Alex stood, and walked, on his own, up the stairs. Taez/but# met him at the top and checked him for dangerous injuries. Satisfied that he would be fine, she returned and sat beside her man.

Alex looked at Ar'man~th. They nodded to each other and Alex retook his seat at Ar'man~th's right. The two nodded their heads together and seemed to speak vehemently together. None could understand the words, but the intensity of what they were saying was apparent to everyone in the room, Ta'a and Human alike.

They finally both turned to Taez/but#. She just shrugged and shook her head, more in sadness than in denial.

"The Clan Ta'fat is no more!" Ar'man~th pronounced heavily. The dissolution of the clan was decided upon, and now clearly stated. The Ta'fat stiffened, awaiting the slaughter.

"The ways of anger and violence must be put to rest," bespoke Alex in a voice suddenly mature and decisive. The Clan is gone and shall never be spoken of again. It's shame forgotten. Those who are clannless still have a people. They ARE Ta'a! They may gather their women and kits and ask for admittance to existing clans. Clan leaders, how you treat those in need will have much to do with how you are treated when you are in need. And remember that each person in your clan, born to the clan or adopted into the clan, is part of the destiny of the clan. Those who remain clannless past a fortnight shall be declared rogue. They must leave their women and kits to be taken by one who has a clan to offer them. Then they must travel to the desolate mountains and live wild. If you survive ten cycles of the Sun you may return and reclaim your place in society, but if you are rejected a second time, you will be anathema, and may be killed by anyone without penalty. "Do you agree?"

In silent agreement, the clannless began to doff armor and weapons and to pry loose golden rings earned elsewhere and in a different time.

"Hold!" commanded Ar'man~th.

"Today is a new beginning. The throne of the Ta'a is once again fully seated. The evil that sought to disrupt is dead. There is, as of this moment, peace with all humans. This is the word!

"Keep your swords, keep your rings and your honor. Go to your new clans with pride and seek how you may better yourselves in this lifetime."

One of the hotheads from one of the less disciplined clans stepped forward angrily, "If they do not surrender their gold what are those of us in need to do. They were in the wrong. They were opposed to the throne. They brought this shame down upon us. Let them pay!"

"You would have the last ounce of blood from the g'lach?" Alex questioned, rising to his feet. "You do not listen! You do not think! That which must be had can, in peace, be traded for. By speaking clearly of your need, of the race's need, you give your enemy a chance to prove himself better than a cruel monster." Alex nodded to Ar'man~th, who held a finely woven bag up to him. Alex plunged his hand into the bag and cast forth on the floor before the termagant youngling many gold rings that landed leadenly, without the slightest ring of base metal. "So? Scrabble on the floor for what you desire if that is your choice. All others may wait and receive what is needed in an honorable manner, without this unseemly haste or fear."

The youngling shrank back into the crowd of his clan. The rings lay untouched on the floor like so many glittering steaks before a crowd of starving children.

"There is never a reason to be ashamed of a biological necessity!" Turning to the humans, Alex said what no Ta'a, not one of the fierce Tigers had been able to say.

"The Ta'a are the remnants of an ancient and honorable people. They have rebuilt their civilization in the face of great hardships. Not the least of these was that their biology was formed on a planet rich in heavy metals, while Sha*tru'ah, Second Home, this planet, has almost no heavy metals. The Ta'a physiology requires trace amounts of gold or they cannot produce children. Humans have such gold and the Ta'a sought it in the only way they understood. They never hated anyone. They needed gold for their races continued existence. Through whatever misunderstanding or misapprehension, they thought that humans were sequestering what they needed so desperately. This entire war was over a few pounds of gold that cost less than one spaceship... or one life!"

Sounds of amazement came from the clustered humans. Alex saw one grossly fat and self-centered human, a merchant that Alex knew to be greedy and conniving and willing to do evil things for minor gains. He stood near the outer edge of the human cluster, the other humans not wanting to associate with him. The fat old pervert saw the reality before any of the other humans. Grabbing one of his heavily gem encrusted gold rings, he worked it off of his finger and without a word stepped to the nearest Tiger and handed it to him. The ringless Tiger, youngest son of his clan leader and deeply beloved by his parents, saw the human holding out a fortune in gold to him and did not know what to do. The fat human put the ring in his hand. Pudgy smooth fingers bent and closed long, hair-covered fingers around the gift.

The other humans saw and quickly followed suit, stripping hoops from their ears; crosses, stars and disks from around their necks; golden watchchains, even wedding bands worn thin with age were removed and given to cats who stood in shock at the wealth that was being freely given. Alex saw his father and the High Ambassador picking up the golden rings from his dress armor suit from the floor and giving them to every Tiger who would take one.

Alex laughed and took the bag from Ar'man~th. Laughing, he started throwing handful after handful of golden rings into the mixed crowd of Humans and Ta'a. Not laughing, looking like two parents who, after years of watching their children grown under a death threat, see those children emerge strong and healthy and eager for life, Ar'man~th and Taez/but# opened bags of their own and joined Alex in pelting the crowd with handfuls of shimmering, twinkling, glowing gold.

The party developed naturally. And was long and hard played. Dancing was a pleasure enjoyed by both races and much fun was had teaching --- and learning--- new dances. Food appeared and was consumed with great gusto. A poetry contest was held and each poem deemed worthy earned it's author, Ta'a or Human, a golden shower, with real gold --- and much ribaldry when the Ta'a were told the meaning of "Golden Shower" in terms of human kinky behavior.

It soon became apparent to the Humans, who were largely unaccompanied by females on this diplomatic mission, that the sexual mores of the two races were somewhat different. A major difference was that the Ta'a saw nothing at all odd in public sex. The demonstration of sexual drive and function was a demonstration of the successfulness of the participants and a way for the demonstrators to garner even more social prestige if their performance warranted such. Social prestige and honor were the coin of achievement to the Ta'a.

Many chests had paps perfectly pierced permitting permanent placement post-puncturing of pellucidly pendulant pendent pendant's by patently protectively proud parents presenting presents perfectly prescribed for properly prostrated postulant products of parental propagation, preparation and posted performance. Bodies of younglings and the unmated began, for the first time in their lives, to absorb more than random amounts of gold into long languishing biological systems.

Parents, emboldened by thoughts of grandchildren and great-grandchildren and great-great-great-great-great-grandchildren in a line that no longer need die out as so many had from the lack of sufficient gold. When Taez/but# moved between her two men and pulled them close to her it was evident that a new sort of bond had been formed. The young Elven Human blushed brightly red as he quickly followed Ar'man~th into erection. Both males were quickly touching each other as Taez/but# first enticed them and then guided them into each others arms.

Ar'man~th and Taez/but# had informed Alex's father of his new status and what it meant in Ta'a society. He was informed that, in Ta'a eyes and law, Alex was a free man, with all the privileges that any Ta'a of his rank would have. It was agreed with Alex's father that the boy needed to finish his education and have a chance at "a real life". It was also agreed, very absolutely and one sidedly, that Alex was NOT leaving Ar'man~th for any reason and the schooling was going to have to come to the mountain because the mountain had no intention of moving, whatsoever!

Alex's father watched as his son, overshadowed by the three times larger cats, pushed the powerful Ar'man~th back into his cushions and began licking the powerful pink mass that jutted from the fuzzy Tigers loins. Sexual preference and choices were freely open in Elvish society, if not quite as public as here with these felinoids. His son had always been a beautiful boy and men had always, through the ages, sought beautiful boys. Apparently, the same was true for the Ta'a.

A grizzled old warrior explained to Alex's father the story of the matelote in Ta'a history. A male who could retain his own sense of self while not only submitting to the needs of the dominant male, but proving capable of both giving and receiving pleasure from being copulated with another male in need was not only rare, especially in modern Ta'ath history, but highly esteemed and honored. Far from the role most humans would assign to a homosexual, especially a submissive homosexual, the Ta'a placed the person on a level at least equal to the one he mated with and honored them for the wisdom, restraint and ability they brought to a relationship.

Alex, the grizzled oldster offered, was H'm'fla*. One of the Triumvirate. In Ta'ath law and protocol he now ranked equal with the other two rulers of the race. His word was, quite literally, law! While Alex's father sat dumbfounded, the oldster eagerly turned to watch as Ar'man~th mounted Alex and began to penetrate him.

Ar'man~th was careful, and Taez/but# held the smooth human in her arms for the first time. Alex blushed bright red every time he noticed the watching audience of Tigers --- and humans. None the never-the-less, he willingly, eagerly accepted all that Ar'man~th had to offer. A sigh of amazement and released tension rolled through the watching mass of mixed people when Ar'man~th first ground his groin hard against the perfectly curved smoothness of Alex's backside. The lack of a tail was no longer revolting, but an obvious necessity for Alex to perform his function properly.

Ar'man~th began to tremble and Alex could feel him holding himself back. Alex moved himself up on his fingertips and toes, his back hard against the heat of the furry belly, his ass hard aground against the muscular loins of his lover. His partner. His friend. Ar'man~th growled in need and Alex grinned in pleasure as he felt Ar'man~th erecting completely inside of him, the broad cockhead spreading its umbrella cap wide, opening Alex's guts to the pounding it was about to take. It was no longer scary as the flared plunger was set to scrapping clean the linings of Alex's guts by the actions of all three participants. Taez/but# helped hold Alex up and caressed both him and Ar'man~th. Ar'man~th arched himself powerfully over Alex and licked Taez/but#'s ears and neck as he strained to be gentle and not ever, ever, ever hurt this magnificent person as, at the same time, he helplessly strained to physically force even more of his already completely encased erection. Alex, for his part, was perfectly happy to go crazy from the pleasure he was receiving. He didn't care if Ark'man-th was worried about hurting him, he wanted more of the stimulation the cat was capable of creating, and he wanted it NOW! It was all both Ar'man~th and Taez/but# could do to keep hold of Alex as he twisted and turned and violently fucked himself on Ar'man~th's massive organ. Ar'man~th finally could take no more and began controlling Alex. Holding him down, biting into his neck while he took charge and began fucking with forcefulness, a wild abandon so close to losing control that he was reacting in ways he had not felt since early in his youth. Taez/but# was chortling at Alex's eagerness and her first husbands attempts to ride the flaming dragon he had first created and then incited.

Taez/but# watched as her husband eagerly copulated with his new friend. This human pup. Not yet fully grown and yet willing, eager to relieve the one she respected more than any other of the pressures that built so horribly when none of his wives were receptive to sexual advances. 'Perhaps this,' she thought, 'might, just might turn her people away from the biologically driven pressure and anger that ripped through their society for three-quarters of every year. Humans had no definite mating season. They were receptive all year long. Taez/but# wondered how she would feel if Alex were a human female. She thought of how wild she became during her own estrus and decided that she was glad Alex was male, and she wondered if there were any more like him among human kind.

Alex was in a glowing universe that sparkled with bursts of nova strength pleasure bedded in a syrupy gravy of tactile delight. The heat radiating from the cat on his back. The plush softness of belly fur on his naked back. The feeling of being held, of being controlled, under control, possessed, cared for and wanted. More than anything else, the great organ that was squishing all around in his guts, forever bringing more pleasure than anyone had a right to possess. With a silly grin on his face Alex watched Erin, one of the lisping nasty-minded faggot clerks that he particularly disliked, being drug off somewhere by a group of young, unmated males. Alex felt surprised when he found himself wishing that Erin would find the love and pleasure he was experiencing.

Alex reached back and touched Ar'man~th's belly. Ar'man~th immediately stopped and let Alex's neck and shoulder drop out of his mouth. "Have I hurt you!?" The panic-stricken and trembling Tiger almost caused Alex to start laughing as he noticed the cats fearfulness that Alex was going to call a halt to their sexplay. Alex suddenly realized the power he had. Physically, this highly developed feline could rip him to pieces any time he chose. Yet, a simple touch of Alex's hand had shown were the control truly existed. Alex could disengage and walk away and Ar'man~th would do NOTHING to stop him. For all his need, the cat was truly a gentle being. Willing to suffer rather than hurt the one he was trying to pleasure.

Alex grinned --- and truly fell in love, deep respect, and passionate need, all at the same time. Slowly... sensuously... teasingly... Alex rotated on the great plug stuffing his ass until he was on his back, looking up into the dense fur covering Ar'man~th's chest. Bringing his arms and legs up and wrapping them around his puzzled partner, Alex looked deep into the golden eyes that were watching him and trying to puzzle out what he was doing. Alex grinned at the great cat and said, "Now I'm going to have to hurt you!"

Silence spread throughout the massed Ta'a. Great shock and wonder. Puzzlement. Imagining if there were more humans like Alex --- and what it would take to entice them to join in intimate alliance with their clan, and them personally. Alex had no idea. But, as he raped the totally willing, totally out of control cat, he was forging the basis of a permanent peace with the species that was to become the true guardians of galactic peace. A piece for peace, as it were. The sounds of orgasm sealed the bargain as the Tiger and his matelote showed their people that coexistence was best.

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