Looking pretty in case her husband brought home his new business partners.
Mercédès’ schedule for today could be summarised by this. Being a beacon of beauty whilst striding otherwise pointlessly through the contemporary residence, or, like now, biding in the technocraticly styled conservatory. After all, her husband was known to be a connoisseur of decorative objects, a collector of everything pleasant to behold.
And wasn’t it her sacred duty as a wife to fulfil his standards?
With a bit too well-versed a move of the hand she picked up her glass. It was emptied in a single draught, though the vodka hadn’t come near the bottom by any means.
A touch on the tablet-like remote control had morphed the winter garden into a terrace. The large glass panels had silently disappeared thanks to a sophisticated mechanism, granting the pre-noon sun free entrance. Her husband was overly fond of the so-called summer lounge. One of the highlights of their 1000 square metres home.
Today Mercédès did not like the sun. She was tired of it. During this time of the year the south of France was obnoxiously sunny. She put the glass back on the small table, next to a stack of read-through Vogue, Cosmopolitan and Vanity Fair. A few years ago, when the first doubts about her marriage had solidified in her mind, she had flushed them away with a glass of Chardonnay at dinner. Ever since that time the hours of her consuming alcohol had become progressively earlier, the poison’s strength higher.
She hasn’t had to hide her questionable drinking habits. With a husband never around and a housekeeper nearly invisible, she could stroll through the vanguard villa in the buff all day, and nobody would notice.
Nonetheless she made her way to the house bar in a more decent attire, dressed in a tastily revealing white summer dress. Her husband had not chosen it as such. But he had very soon defined her closet’s cardinal points by employing a set of easy-to-understand standard phrases. Tonight/tomorrow/at Yamamoto-san’s dinner party he would like to see her in something “nice”/”classy”/”sporty”/”light”. Every last classy attire of hers, for instance, had come with an at least three digit price tag attached. Light would be much lighter than any summer dress.
In the words of the architects, the bar served as an “inter-areal environment”, a transition between the outside of the summer lounge and the insight of the residential area. The elements of satinised glass in the counter could be illuminated ice-blue – a design her husband once had discovered in a vodka bar in Helsinki. He’d seen it. He’d wanted it. He’d got it. Story of his life. She re-filled her glass from one of the countless bottles. She didn’t bother to read the label. They were all expensive. Worth being acquired and put on display.
Mercédès lived the comfortable yet empty life of a trophy wife. Blonde hair highlighted even blonder, long nails buffed to perfection, her sole purpose was embodied in these two words: looking pretty. How she had come to hate being a priced possession, wearing make-up and high heels at home, laughing about silly anecdotes from her husband’s business partners and pretending not to understand their innuendos.
There had been a noise coming from the master bedroom, hadn’t it?
In most likelihood in had been the housekeeper, to whom her husband kept referring as “maid” – despite the fact that the housekeeper was assisted by an actual part-time maid (“the other maid”). She never wanted a maid. She wasn’t so sure about having a housekeeper, either. It was another convenient, dulling element that disconnected her from normal life. Groceries and everyday commodities were delivered or brought by Cécile. The property was looked after not by one but two gardeners. This morning the local Mercedes-Benz dealer had sent a bloke to fetch her two-seater AMG for service.
That noise again. Drawers being pulled open? Hard to tell, also whether it really came from the bedroom. But it most certainly originated from the first floor. Cécile had a key, but would normally make her presence known before gliding into servile invisibility. Maybe she hadn’t bothered, assuming that nobody was home since both Mercédès’ runabout and her husband’s everyday car were gone.
The prospect of having somebody to talk to caused her to investigate further, even if the chat would strictly be one between employer and employee. In the circle in which Mercédès moved, she was bound to the conversationalist’s golden rule to never appear smarter than her mostly male betters. At least she could pride herself on the fact she was only playing the naïve damsel. Many an associate’s wife or business partner’s girlfriend with whom she had been pushed to socialise didn’t mind to be mere status symbols or failed to even comprehend their roles. Whilst enjoying their 12 € latte macchiato they would discuss the newest fashion at Bianchetti’s or how their new convertible’s leather seats matched their Yves Saint Laurent clutch. Not exactly intellectually challenging.
At the far back of the living room the stairs led up to the first floor. Single steps of dark wood, levitating between a glass wall and polished fair-faced concrete. Mercédès put her again near-empty vodka glass on one of them as she ascended, then picked it up again. Why bother? Past the sideboard with the obligatory array of Buddha heads and African masks she marched towards the master bedroom. It hadn’t got a door, but was separated by two huge interlacing glass segments which could change from clear to opaque. Like so much more in this house the function was controlled via the scattered tablet remotes. And like so much more in this house it served no other purpose than glorifying its owner.
The walls were transparent now, allowing a view on the monochrome-themed interior design – and on the door to her dressing room, which was standing open. Mercédès was positive she had closed it in the morning.
Upon entering the bedroom she again heard Cécile rummaging.
“Did you bring the―”
She froze in the door frame. So did the young man in front of the open drawers of her dresser. A slightly ridiculous display for any onlooker they were, starring at each other motionlessly, she holding her vodka glass in her hand, the boy with one of her silk tangas in his.
Mercédès broke her paralysis with the first thought that came to her mind:
“I know you…!”
Certainly not the smartest thing to say to an intruder and potential kidnapper, she realised at once. The boy, overcoming his scare as well, made a run for the door, with Mercédès still standing in it. Her own fight-or-flight response kicked in, yet became all tangled up. As he kept running towards her, she staggered back into the bedroom, proving that sixteen centimetres of heels and 200 grams of vodka were a challenging combination even for booze-hardened fashionistas. Unable to stop, even if he’d wanted to, the lad bumped into her, knocking the vodka glass from her hand. In an attempt to steady himself and spin her out of his escape route he grabbed Mercédès’ waist, sending both of them into an off-balance dance. The woman screeched and teetered, involuntary holding fast to her opponent – and without any intent she pulled her knee up.
The boy’s eyes grew wide, and suddenly be became very heavy. She let go of him as he glided down on her to the floor with a wheezing sound. For a moment Mercédès was stiff with shock again, then she couldn’t help but utter a single gasping laugh of both relief and disbelief. At her feet the adolescent intruder was still crippled by testicular agony. She must have got him really good, a perfect interaction of angle, inertia and blind luck.
None the less she was amazed by the outcome. Of what a girl could do to a boy.
“What are you doing here?!”
The youngster didn’t react, just kept moaning on the floor in a foetal position, both hands at his crotch.
“I’m talking to you!”
She nudged him with the toe of her Louboutin. Still no answer was forthcoming. Instead he tried weakly to prop himself up on one elbow. The boy’s face was pale, showing clear signs of nausea. The deep, gnawing pain was lingering in his abdomen.
Mercédès nudged him again, with more force and this time with taking aim. The tip of her white court shoe met his solar plexus, causing him to tilt on his back.
“Stop it!” he whined.
“You are the Bonnay’s kid, aren’t you? Rémy?”
He nodded in fresh pain, now clenching his chest. So she had been right. Her intruder was that good-for-nothing brat from further up the road – his rich parents’ son by trade and an obnoxious little punk by choice, he had yet to work his way up to a university dropout.
“So what are you doing in my house?”
“I though nobody was home,” Rémy coughed, signalling no doubts about the mitigating potential of his answer.
“And that gives you the bloody right to sniff through a lady’s boudoir?!”
“A what? Please, I―”
He tried to sit up, but Mercédès pressed her right foot against his torso.
“You stay down.”
Rémy grabbed her ankle and instep in an attempt to lessen the pressure the tip of her heel was exerting.
“Hands away! Don’t you dare touch me!”
She was surprised by the sternness in her voice, and more so by the boy’s instant compliance. Mercédès felt hot blood pulsing in her head, and not just there. The sudden rush of power was giving her euphoria. Alcohol was a downer. It numbed one’s senses. Took one away from the harsh, cold cliffs of reality. This now was rendering her sharp, alive. Cruel and beautiful. Her head was clear, and unlike after former stressing events she didn’t even feel the need for a drink. She was feeling the need for more of this, though. For almost five years she had tried to be a good wife. The honouring and obeying kind. When her husband had insisted for her to drive a car befitting her name, she’d smiled and chosen the colour. When he had told her to change her hair-do, an appointment with the most renowned coiffeur in Cannes for the very next day had soon been at hand. When he had wanted to fuck her up the arse, she had turned around and bent over.
Mercédès was hell-bent not to be a docile asset anymore.
“How did you get in?”
“Past the pool,” he confessed.
The pool area could be overlooked from the summer lounge, but both had their blind spots. She must have missed him by minutes in the house bar, though.
“Please, Madame! I’m not a burglar. It was just a spur-of-the-moment thing!”
Mercédès felt the fury rising within her. That little crétin was taking her for a fool!
“‘Spur-of-the-moment’, huh? You think I’m stupid?! Some dense bimbo? You were snooping about for some time, weren’t you?”
“You saw my husband’s car gone, then mine driving away. That’s how you deduced nobody was home.”
“No, it wasn’t like that!”
She took her foot off Rémy’s chest, only to put it firmly on his crotch. His trousers were of light cotton, granting no protection against the sharp heel.
“Oh, I bet it was. What did you want with my panties? Wank all over them?”
He groaned and shook his head, yet failed to provide a satisfying answer. Mercédès put more weight on her right foot, sending the boy into real distress. Beneath her heel she could feel trapped organic matter giving way.
“Arrgh! Stop it, please!”
Cold sweat appeared on his forehead as he tried in vain to wiggle away. Who would have thought that these ridiculously high heels would come to use some day?
“You stole them to do kinky shit, right?” she interrogated him further.
“It’s for a dare! A bet!”
“And I’m supposed to believe that?”
Rémy made another, far weaker attempt to push her foot off his body, and Mercédès stomped down with full force.
“I told you not to touch me!”
He could not hear her words. Even she herself had trouble hearing them. The boy doubled over in agony, pressing the content of his lungs out in an off-key howl. When he had run out of air, he slumped to the side, towards the bed. One hand clutched his tortured genitals, the other clawed into the duvet. He looked as though he was about to be sick or lose consciousness. Mercédès feared that she had seriously hurt the youngster. No, she hoped she had seriously hurt him. The idea of having all but skewered one of his bollocks brought a new wave of heat. Had consuming un-ladylike amounts of alcohol blanked out her existential frustration, going mediæval on a pathetic punk’s balls was blowing it away.
She tapped lightly against his thigh. Rémy whimpered between ragged breaths.
“We are not nearly done, boy.”
Her newfound sadism was like a new toy. And she would play with it all she wanted. A harder push rolled him back into a supine position. Mercédès stepped with one foot between his legs. The boy cringed across the hardwood until the back of his head bumped against the inner glass segment. Easily catching up with her wounded prey, she pressed her foot against his damaged privates, this time with the thick sole, using her heel as fulcrum.
“Please no, Madame! Please, I can’t take any more.”
“Two shots, and you are wimping out? Tell me a bit about that dare of yours.”
“There’s that clique. If you want to join it, you’ve got to nick a girl’s―”
Mercédès tilted her foot as a vice-like reminder for Rémy to mind his word choice.
“A lady! A lady’s knickers! It’s an inition rite.”
“Who are in that clique?”
“Some local boys.”
“I want names!”
Wow, that sounded evil! She pressed down harder, just for savouring the mental image of herself as an unpitying tormentress. Rémy’s sore gonads flattened noticeably underneath the hidden platform sole. So little effort it took her that she added a grinding motion. In quick succession and with a voice distorted by his suffering her prisoner uttered a couple of names. Mercédès recognised none of them but the one belonging to the ringleader. Fabien. He owned a certain reputation involving reckless driving, wild parties aboard his father’s yacht and a certain aptitude in obtaining female company. He had difficulties in understanding the meaning of “no”, though.
“Please, let me go, Madame. I’m really truly sorry I went into your room!”
“You are truly sorry I’ve made your couilles swell up to the size of oranges, that’s all. We still need a proper punishment for a panty thief. What do you reckon?”
Rémy fell into a hoarse sobbing which utterly failed to move Mercédès to lenity. Her aggressivity was reaching fever pitch.
“How about another dare? I dare you to spread those legs. Wide.”
The boy’s lips vibrated, forming fragments of silent pleas. But he complied. The all-consuming hurt in his testes, the Damoclean presence of her red-soled weapon didn’t allow any other reaction. Even if it meant even worse destruction. Then and there Mercédès witnessed the beauty of testicular discipline, the absolute power it granted to the female willing to seize it. Wide-eyed and trapped between the glass wall and his new nemesis, Rémy trembled in horrid anticipation. It was said that the prospect of pain was worse than the pain itself. Whoever stated this platitude has never had their balls busted.
Something came to her mind. Or had always been in storage there, in the same corner in which her other dirty, naughty or in other ways pleasurable thoughts had collected dust over the years. She set her right foot against his face
She felt herself flush at this. The mere concept of such a practice, let alone forcing this act of total submission out of another person in reality, had been beyond her mind-set until less than the quarter of an hour ago. Rémy wasn’t exactly bursting with romantic feelings as he planted his lips against the lacquered sole. Nonetheless, the symbolism was overwhelming.
Embracing the perverse intoxication, Mercédès pulled her foot back and delivered the punishment. Nameless pain exploded in Rémy as her volley kick slammed the shoe’s heavy front into his reproductive organs. The right testicle, tender from the initial kneeing yet spared from her attack with the heel, took the bulk of the impact. But a light turning of her ankle, be it involuntarily or not, made sure that target no. 2 received its fair share of blunt trauma, too.
Her victim jack-knifed at once. His hands were waving about comically, as if he couldn’t even comprehend where the actual source of his agony lay, as if his manhood had been crushed into transcendence. Cramps were racing through Rémy’s stomach, cramps so fierce he dry-heaved clear fluid onto the hardwood floor before tilting into the gathering puddle.
He did not. Could not. No worldly power was great enough to make him overcome the extremes of his suffering.
“I said, get up!”
Under immense strain he managed to look at her, his voice forming cracked words.
“Please… just let me go…”
“Then go. Get the fuck out of my house!”
Rémy didn’t get up for another minute. When he finally was able to keep himself on his own two legs, still ghastly pale, he began his long walk of pain down the stairs.
“Where do you think you are going?” Mercédès demanded as he hobbled towards the bar. “You go out through the front door.”
Everybody who happened to be on the coast road should and would know that his balls had just been finished off. Panting with exertion Rémy half waddled, half limped through the foyer with its meaningless obsidian steles to finally reach the door. Everybody would know.
The main entrance door was clad in brushed stainless steel, befitting the minimalistic, guarded design the house offered towards the road. It opened easily to her hand, though.
Rémy shuffled past her, avoiding eye contact. But a few steps out into the forecourt he turned around.
“Please don’t tell any―”
She slammed the door shut.
For long moments Mercédès stood still before she tottered across the entrance hall and slumped against one of the steles. She allowed herself to slide down its smooth cool surface. Sitting on the floor, she kicked her shoes off to grant her aching feet some relief.
What had she just done?! Her head swirled and her whole body quivered in the aftermaths of intense excitement and rage. Mercédès became aware of her rapid heartbeat as the adrenaline wore off. What she’d done? She’d just blown a wayward kid’s balls into the middle of next week! And it had felt great! Still doing; freeing to a degree she had never thought possible – let alone been able to find between fashion magazines and golf club cocktail parties. Mercédès knew she wanted this rush surging through her again, and soon.
Mercédès also knew where Fabien’s father’s yacht might be lying at anchor these days…