Slavery, 58

When You Work with Your Friends, You Can Have Fun Working

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“So are you just moving in, or…”

Ozzy smiled, meticulously laying out all the things he’d brought back with him. They were in a rarely used sitting room in the north wing of the house, the furniture pushed back except for the small table, which Ozzy was filling with jars and bowls and powders and tinctures. “I could. Theodore probably wouldn’t notice when he got back. Just one more boy in his house.”

“You’d have to stop wearing pants,” Daniel reminded him. Ozzy said it as a joke, but Daniel wondered.

Ozzy made a face, looking at Daniel’s legs. “Good point. It’s a good look for you, especially with the garters. But I’m not sure I can pull it off.”

Daniel smirked at him. “Have you tried?”

“Admittedly no.” Ozzy poured something from a canteen into two cups. He handed one to Daniel. “Drink?”

Daniel took it. “What are you going to do if I say no?”

“Be very sad because I squeezed this juice myself just for you because you’re my best friend and you deserve freshly squeezed juice.” Ozzy drank some of his.

Daniel rolled his eyes, drank half the cup. It really did taste just like juice. “Is that always how you poison people? By guilting them into it?”

Ozzy fixed Daniel with a glare. “You know, you take all the fun out of everything. I had a whole dramatic reveal set up for that. You could have kept your mouth shut and let me do my thing.”

“Sorry. How long do I have to live?”

Ozzy sighed. “You only drank half of it, so about an hour. Plenty of time to put together the antidote from all this. The poison is called White Soul. It’s tasteless, odourless, made from geni roots, twilight oak extract, mireberries and ferret liver.” Ozzy waved at the table. “If you’re not dead in an hour I’ll teach you how to make it, plus I’ll give you this super cool poison making set as a gift. Every assassin needs a poison making set. Pairs nicely with the knives, which, I repeat, is a great look for you. They’re properly sheathed, right? You’d better not have bare blades against vulnerable arteries.”

“I’m not dumb,” Daniel assured him, sitting in front of the table, trying to remember. If he was honest with himself, the part of his assessment where Ozzy had rapidly explained a lot of things about poisons to him was the one part that he was a bit fuzzy on. Which was probably why Ozzy had decided to test him by giving him something lethal. He wasn’t under any illusions that Ozzy had only pretended to poison him. He was probably confident that Daniel could do it.

There was a small bowl of thick leaves that Daniel pulled close to himself. Dove’s Wing leaves could be mashed and the liquid in them was the base of most antidotes, that he remembered for sure. Whatever the other ingredients were, this was one of them. Ozzy’s face gave no indication of whether Daniel was right. There were only enough leaves to make one batch of antidote, he noticed. “Only one chance, huh?”

“It’s not like you can make an antidote from beyond the grave anyway,” Ozzy said, picking at his nails. “Keep going.”

Daniel nodded, considering everything on the table. He recognized a good chunk of it and most of it was labelled, which was helpful. He mashed up the leaves while he took stock of what was on the table, hands even. “Theodore’s going to be mad at you if he comes home and finds me dead,” he commented while he worked.

“Well, I wasn’t going to leave your body here or anything. I’d take you and give you a proper burial.”

“That’s nice of you.” There was some black bat’s blood; that would counteract the mireberries. Daniel put a few drops of it into a separate bowl, pouring out the liquid he’d mashed from the leaves into the same bowl. “I’d kind of like to be cremated, though.”

“Too bad. How can I wail and moan over your corpse if it’s just some ashes in a box?”

“Good point.” Daniel shrugged. “I mean, I’m going to be dead, so I guess it doesn’t matter. Do whatever you want with the corpse. Is that tameln syrup or camel sap?” he asked, idly pointing at a small vial.

“No hints.”

“Even if I only need it because your handwriting sucks?”

“Maybe I’d be in a better mood to give hints if you hadn’t spoiled my surprise.”

Daniel rolled his eyes and took it—it was tameln syrup, he’d just been messing with Ozzy—and poured it into his antidote. Then he looked at the table, considering. “Hm,” he muttered, reaching for the cup with the poison in it.

“You’re not going to smell anything in there,” Ozzy warned. “That’s the whole point of White Soul.”

“I know, I just thirsty,” Daniel said, sipping. “I’m already poisoned anyway, right?”

“Whatever. You’re crazy.”

Daniel smiled. “I’m trying to decide between the snake powder and the archtree pollen.”

“No hints,” Ozzy repeated.

Nodding, Daniel held the cup to his lips. “Hey, Ozzy?”


Daniel emptied the cup into his mouth, then leaned forward, hand on Ozzy’s chin, and kissed him, pushing the juice into his mouth when Ozzy kissed back, keeping his mouth there until Ozzy swallowed. Daniel pulled back, smiling at Ozzy, whose eyes were closed. “You asshole,” Ozzy said after a second. “That was low. And gross.”

“Do I need the snake powder or the archtree pollen?”

“Maybe I don’t feel like telling you,” Ozzy said, crossing his arms and pouting a little. “Maybe I’m mad that you took advantage of my affection for you and used it to poison me, when, I will remind you, I am your best friend.”

“Maybe, but are you so mad you’re willing to die over it?” Daniel asked with a smile. “And give up your only chance to cry over my corpse?”

“I changed my mind, I’m feeding your corpse to dogs. Besides, you drank it ten full minutes before I did, so I’ll have time to finish the antidote after you die.”

“Are you sure? You’re younger and smaller than me. The poison will work faster on you.”

Ozzy sighed. “You are cheating.”

“Am I?” Daniel asked. “You must have known I didn’t know how to make an antidote to a poison I’ve never seen.”

Ozzy coloured a little. “It’s the snake powder.”

Daniel kissed him again. “Thanks.” And he measured some in, then mixed the antidote, lighting it on fire and letting most of it burn away, leaving just a smoking gel that Daniel scooped up onto a spoon. “Here,” he said, offering it to Ozzy with his left hand. His right hand gone numb.

Ozzy opened his mouth, let Daniel give him the antidote. Instead of taking half, he took all of it. Then he reached into his pants and pulled out a vial, which had a similar, if less lumpy, black substance inside it. “You were supposed to realize that I had the antidote on my person,” he muttered. “Preferably strip-searching me to find it.”

Daniel took the vial, drank back the contents. It tasted awful, but it beat dying. “Sorry. If you want I could strip-search you anyway, as an apology for ruining everything.”

Ozzy looked for a minute like he might say no, but then, “Okay, I guess I’ll forgive you if you do that.”

Snorting, Daniel leaned forward, kissing him again, pushing Ozzy back. He went slowly, mostly because he was waiting for feeling to come back to his arm. While he waited for that, he untucked Ozzy’s shirt with his other hand, pulling it up, touching the skin underneath.

Ozzy just lay there and let him do it, kissing back, touching Daniel’s arms. Once Daniel could move his right hand again, he started to pull the shirt off, getting it over Ozzy’s head with a little cooperation. He ran his hands all over Ozzy’s chest, unstrapping harnesses as he went until Ozzy was bare, then Daniel leaned up, smiling down at him. “Hm, nothing so far. Guess I’ll have to search elsewhere.”

Ozzy nodded, and Daniel unlaced his pants, sliding them down, snagging on Ozzy’s boots, which he had to take off first. He kissed Ozzy’s thighs while he pulled the pants off, then went up to slowly peel back his smallclothes. “Let’s see what’s hiding in here…”

Daniel kissed what was hiding in there and Ozzy gasped, and a moment later he was naked, wriggling underneath Daniel. Daniel kissed his way back up Ozzy, taking his erection in hand and stroking it gently. When he got back to Ozzy’s lips, he whispered. “Do you forgive me?”

Ozzy shook his head. “N-nope. Not yet.”

“Hmmm,” Daniel said, stroking harder, but keeping a firm grip on Ozzy. He went slow, the fingers on his other hand circling Ozzy’s nipple. “Don’t know what I’ll do with myself if you don’t forgive me.”

“G-go faster and I, I will…” Ozzy promised.

“Can’t,” Daniel told him with a sad shake of his head. “I’m just so preoccupied with the knowledge that my best friend is mad at me that I can barely concentrate on what I’m doing.”

“Daniel…” Ozzy was leaking into his hand. He really should have more stamina than this.

Daniel kissed him again, didn’t say anything for a good minute. “Do you forgive me now, Ozzy?”


“It would mean the world to me if you did, you know.”

Ozzy arched his back, trying to cum. Daniel squeezed him so he couldn’t. “Okay!” he said. “Okay, I forgive you.”

“Oh, good,” Daniel said, not letting up. “And what else?”


“I said, what else, Ozzy?”

“I…fuck…sorry for poisoning you!”

Daniel nodded. “And what else?”

“Daniel, stop sucking!”

“I’m not sucking, silly. Do you want me to?”

“I want to cum!”

“You should really get more self-control, Ozzy,” Daniel said. “What else?”

“I…I want to stay here until he comes back!”

Daniel gave Ozzy a few hard strokes, and Ozzy came onto his belly with a cry. Daniel kissed him again before moving back and sitting beside him, wiping his hand on Ozzy’s pants. “Okay. You can stay here as long as you promise not to poison anyone.”

Ozzy opened his eyes, smiling at Daniel. “I won’t poison anyone except you, how’s that?”

“Close enough.”

Ozzy nodded, then sighed. “You suck,” he said, reaching for his pants.

“Really? You seemed to be having fun.”

“No, I mean you suck at the search part of strip-searching.” He pulled a roll of paper from his pants and handed it to Daniel. “You should have found that.”

Daniel unrolled it and frowned. “Georg Shalestone,” he read. “And that’s…four days from now?” There was also a number at the bottom.

“Yeah.” Ozzy sat up. “No later than. You want to do it before then that’s fine, but since it’s your first time I think you should spend a few days scoping him out and planning. Oh, and the number down there is your pay.”

Daniel felt something strange run through him. “This is a job.”

Ozzy nodded, smiling. “You excited?”


“Don’t worry. I’ll be here to supervise. Make sure you don’t fuck it up.”

“You know,” Daniel bit his lip. “That makes me feel better, actually. This guy is one of Theodore’s friends.” Daniel remembered Georg, a calm westerner who owned a theatre. He’d seemed nice.

“That going to be a problem?”

Daniel shook his head. “You want to sleep with us or do you want your own room?”

“Course I’m going to sleep with you. What’s the point of a sleepover if I don’t sleep with you?”

“Okay. But you have to sleep naked. House rule.” When Ozzy made a face, Daniel clarified. “Our house rule, not his.”

“Oh, well,” Ozzy brightened. “I guess I can manage that. Now get naked, because I have to tell you how to make this poison and it’s weird if I’m the only one not dressed.”

Daniel didn’t think he’d ever had so much fun learning how to kill people.

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