Here are relevant references from the Books where Beloved is mentioned.
I make no pronouncements on these matters, but report them as I find them.
Arrive at your own conclusions.
I wish you well,
Click a heading to jump down to that listing.
Beloved Core of Her Being
Beloved Friend of the Administrator
Beloved Kettle Market
Beloved Mighty Forces of Nature
Beloved of Agamemnon
Yet nothing but the sight of my beloved would have brought me more satisfaction than driving my sword into the heart of the Assassin.
On the other hand, from what I knew of Gnieus Lelius, whom I had met, I guessed he was an honest man. Indeed, in another time and place, it was my speculation that he might have served as an efficient, beloved administrator.
"Please remain, dear friend," said the shogun. "I am sure you will enjoy the spectacle, or, at least, find it amusing, or of some interest." He then turned to Lord Akio. "I am sensitive to your concern, beloved Akio," he said.
"It seems," said Drusus Andronicus, "the noble Albus is not as beloved by his men as you supposed. Few, I suspect, would gladly rush to die for him. No such leader is he. It is not Decius Albus they serve, but his gold."
"Certainly," said the Lady Bina, "I am a free woman. I am assuming, one, that the noble and beloved Decius Albus is not currently conscious -"
"The Cosians are our beloved allies," said a man. "They have disarmed us for our own safety."
"Friends," he called, "humans, astute and wise, skilled and loyal, beloved allies, you did note how I intervened to save the life of your lord, the great Decius Albus, how I, at great personal risk, thrust him aside, away from the line of a quarrel's flight, just as he was about, boldly, at risk to, his own life, to order you to attack enemies and traitors, the criminal Surtak, and others. Prepare now to do as he would have then had you do. Prepare now to do death to our common enemies!"
'Perhaps,' said Altheia, 'you have not yet been conquered by a man, have not yet been subdued, have not yet learned to beg for his final slightest touch, that you might, leaping in your chains, scream your irrevocable submission and surrender to the moons and stars of Gor?' 'Do not betray me,' I begged. 'You are wholly at my mercy, are you not?' she asked. 'Yes,' I said. 'As I was once at yours,' she said. 'Yes,' I said, 'friend Altheia, dear, beloved Altheia.' 'Squirm in your ropes,' she said. I pulled against the cords. 'You are well fastened,' she said. 'Yes, Mistress,' I whispered.
"You would have considered keeping the property of Cos?" asked the man.
"Not we, of course," said the older, hastily. "But some might have."
"Some less grateful to their beloved benefactors, some less loyal to the empire?" suggested the man.
"Crowds swarm, beloved benefactor," said Xenon. "You must remain here, lest you be recognized."
"That will not be necessary," said Xenon. "If my mentor, my benefactor, beloved Seremides, wishes to reach Ar, the least I can do is help him to do so."
I seized up the cone. "Wise, noble, beloved, long-suffering, muchly wronged citizens of Glorious Ar," I shouted into the cone, the words booming out, "I, Geoffrey of Harfax, your friend, the recipient of your thoughtful, generous reward for the capture and delivery of the despicable, perfidious Talena of Ar to the talons of your gentle justice, I, Geoffrey of Harfax, whom you have muchly honored, address you!"
"Yes, noble masters of the jury, yes, beloved fellow citizens of glorious, outraged Ar - Talena, Talena of Ar!"
"The next witness," announced Decius Albus, "is a hero of Ar, one beloved of all true citizens of our mighty city, he who singlehandedly, at great personal risk, against all odds, recovered the Home Stone of Ar, and dared to restore it to us despite knowing himself beneath false charges of sedition and corruption, the noble, astute, and courageous Seremides of Ar!"
Hemartius looked at me, wonderingly. Then he rose to his feet. He spoke in a loud, firm, clear voice, a voice that commanded attention. "Noble Ubar, noble jurors, noble officers of the court, revered colleagues of the prosecution, noble and beloved citizens of Ar, your friend and benefactor, Geoffrey of Harfax will address the court."
The sentence of death passed upon him by the usurping government of the Initiates was rescinded, but because his imperialistic ambition was feared, he was exiled from his beloved city.
The heralds at the corners of the platform cried into their amplifying cones, "Welcome to the noble Geoffrey of Harfax, doer of justice, friend of law, champion of right, benefactor of the state, beloved of the Home Stone of Ar!"
Who can recall without horror the long and terrible sufferings which then wracked noble Ar -"
Here there were cries of anger and rage from the stands.
"- until the return of Marlenus to free, with the stalwart aid of his noble friend, Decius Albus, his beloved city of Ar."
We need not even recognize that she was, as she obviously was, the most heinously guilty of all the traitors and strangers who degraded and looted our beloved Ar."
How distressed I was at what she had done to your beautiful, beloved Ar, a mighty city so understanding and kind to small Harfax! I have despised her, and her pride, dishonesty, and treachery, for years!"
"There you have it, noble citizens of Ar," I said. "Mere talk of irons, and tongs and pincers! Does not Talena's guilt far transcend such crude devices, fit perhaps for a mundane villain of little or no consequence, but surely less than suitable for one who betrayed not only her own Home Stone but an entire city, your beloved Ar!"
"Citizens of beloved Ar," I said, "I am told I am popular. Is it true?"
"Dear Lord Grendel, beloved commander," said Flavion, "believe me, I know nothing of this!"
Phyllis, radiant, opened her wrists, extending her hands to Ho-Sorl that he might now lift her to her feet as a free woman, to be his sworn and beloved companion. "I love you, Ho-Sorl," said she.
"Do not mind my purse," said the man, hoarsely, intensely, weakly, "save my companion, my beloved Pechia. They seized her." He then pointed in a direction. "That way!" he said.
"Let us bring him to the captain," I said.
This seemed to me the most likely way to save the boy's life. His youth would make little difference, I feared, to men who had been under the arrows from the rence, who had lived in terror, who had lost beloved comrades.
As Ellen had with the veiling of her features, so now it seemed that she struggled with her implicit, but unseen, assailants, to cling to the veil, held so tightly about her shoulders and body. Who could be tearing her veil away from her body? Could these be invisible assailants, of some powerful, but uncertain nature, or were they her own needs determined despite her conscious will to have their way with her, to reduce her brutishly, ruthlessly, to the denied, but beloved core of her being, or might they be the unseen hands of any there, of any within that crowded, silken enclosure, who were determined to see that she became a woman?
"I am Sarm," it said, "beloved of the Mother and First Born."
"There are still many Priest-Kings in the Nest," I said.
"No," he said, "there is only one Priest-King, the First Born, Sarm he who did not betray the Nest, he who was beloved of the Mother, he who kept and honored the ancient truths of his people."
"But he was a Priest-King," said Misk, and he touched the crushed, torn figure of Sarm gently with his antennae. "And he was First Born," said Misk. "And he was beloved of the Mother."
The body of Sarm, I learned, had been burned in the Chamber of the Mother, according to the custom of Priest-Kings, for he had been First Born and beloved of the Mother.
I felt sorrow for Mahpiyasapa. It must be a terrible thing for a father to realize that his beloved son has betrayed his codes.
"You will expedite the arrangements from my ransom," she said. "I will soon be ransomed by my beloved sisters. There should be no difficulties in the matter, as we are one of the richest houses in Venna."
"I will not be here long," she said. "My beloved sisters will ransom me, almost instantly!"
"I thought, beloved daughter," said Lord Yamada, "our guests would be pleased to see them so."
"You asked her a question, beloved daughter," said Lord Yamada. "She responded as best she could. Dismiss her. Permit her to continue serving."
"What occurred, beloved daughter?" inquired Lord Yamada, solicitously. "Did our guest not enjoy the garden?"
"Is it your intention to jeopardize our friendship, old comrade in arms?" inquired Miles of Argentum.
"That is no friendship, beloved Miles," said Drusus Rencius, "which can be jeopardized by truth."
"Mirus!" he cried. "Old friend! What are you doing here!"
"Hendow!" said Mirus, tears in his eyes. "Beloved friend!"
"Put the fangs of Borko to that slave," said Mirus, indicating me, "or, if you wish, slay her for me, with your sword."
"Beloved Mirus!" said Hendow.
Too, I did not want to touch it because it had been the sword of Hendow. Too, he had used it to save the life of his beloved friend, Mirus, though in doing the deed he must have understood, opening himself to the blade of his enemy as he had, that he had made his own life forfeit. How ironic then, how unthinkable, that I should use that same blade now to kill Mirus.
There were cries of rage. Swords were drawn.
"Sheath your swords, beloved friends," said Aemilianus.
"Beloved friends," said Aemilianus, "prepare yourselves to be received by our friends of Port Cos."
My life depends on my fidelity to the commission of your beloved friend and colleague, Lurius of Jad.
"I have word for you, dear Decius Albus, beloved friend," called Marlenus, up to the parapet, "word which may leave you less content."
He had then collapsed weeping on the pillar of sacrifice, for it was well known that he had been a beloved friend of the Administrator.
"We lost no time shortening the hair of our detestable traitresses," said a man, "to a length suitable to their new condition, that of slave. We would not want reconnoitering tarnsmen, flighted from Ar, to suspect that they might be refugees from the proscription lists, lest determined efforts be made to recover them."
I supposed the women had no objection to this, despite the shearing of their beloved tresses being in its way a badge of degradation and servitude.
Surely it was better to be shorn of those treasured tresses than be betrayed by them into the hands of vengeful citizens.
"For days you have been different," said Relia.
"What happened?" asked Janina.
"Nothing," I said, angrily.
"You will soon feel better," said Janina.
"It is not like you had been sold from a beloved household," said another.
"Do not fret, Laura," said Relia. "You need only the proper master, and a touch of his whip."
These are prize slaves, sought by the Curulean, but withheld, due to my popular propensities, for the district of Metellus, and our beloved Kettle Market.
I recalled Telima, who, prior to my departure for the north, had returned to her beloved marshes. I was angry.
I thought, too, of Telima. She, too, had made her decision.
Let her remain, if she wished, in her beloved marshes.
"Thank you," she cried, "beloved Master!"
He turned to go.
"Beloved Master," she whispered. She knelt. She put her head down. "If I were a bold free woman," she said, "and not a bond girl, I would ask that you bring with you on your return a bottle of wine for your pleasure, that you would enjoy me more."
I knew now that I truly loved Clitus Vitellius of Ar. Yet to my misery I had betrayed him. How I would if I could have undone that deed. How I would if I could have tried to pit my small strength against the heavy oar which he would now draw. I would if I could have changed places with him. Better that I, if I could, be chained to a bench, an oarsman slave, than he. I, a worthless slave girl, in her vanity and pettiness, had laid low not a warrior, but my own beloved. What mattered it that he cared naught for me, that I was but rude collar meat in his mighty hands? It mattered nothing. I loved him more deeply than I realized one could love. He had stirred such emotion, such rage, such hatred, in me that I would not have believed it possible. I had lived for my vengeance, dreaming of it, and, when I had attained it, I found it only misery and ashes, and unspeakable anguish, for it had cost me my very self, he whom I loved, Clitus Vitellius of the city of Ar.
The men in the tavern, and the girls, too, had been pleased that I had designated Clitus Vitellius. How excited and pleased all had been. "You did well," they assured me. I had been thrown a pastry. But, alone with myself, I wept with misery.
I had not known I could so love. I would have given all to undo that deed.
He had not treated me well, but it did not matter. All that mattered was that I loved him.
Yet I had betrayed him.
How small a thing it was that he had sported with me and then, in his simple cruelty, given me to a peasant. Did I not know I was a slave girl? What did I expect? To be treated as a free woman? How vast a thing, how vicious and disproportionate it was that I, a mere slave girl, for so small a fault, if fault it was, had sentenced him to the tortures of the galleys.
I had done well! I cried out in anguish. I loved him. I loved him!
I should have served him in the tavern, and then kissed him farewell, surrendering him to his glory and freedom, I remaining behind, forgotten, a girl whom once he had owned and discarded. I could then have known him free.
Would it not have been enough?
But I had betrayed him, he whom I loved.
"Sell us, beloved Master!" begged Ginger. "Please, Master," begged Evelyn, "we are only poor slaves. Take pity on us! Sell us to another!" "Make us pot girls!" begged Ginger. "Shackle us! Send us to the farms!" "We are only poor slaves," wept Evelyn. "Please, please, Master, sell us to another! We beg you, Beloved Master. Sell us to another!"
Her bondage was indeed the deepest bondage in which a human female could conceive of herself being placed, being only, strictly, the property of her beloved master.
"Do you want to know something?" she said.
Surely," I said.
"Love," she said, "puts any woman in bondage, and the more deeply she is in love, the more deeply she is plunged into bondage."
"Perhaps," I said.
"I think it is true," she said.
"Perhaps you are right," I said. "I do not know."
"But if this is true," she said, "it would seem to follow that no woman could be truly in love who is not a female slave."
"What follows, I think," I said, "is that any woman deeply and truly in love is, in effect, a female slave."
"Imagine, then," she breathed, "the love that might be felt by an actual female slave, a woman actually owned, for her master. How helplessly she would be his!"
"Bondage," I said, "with its ownership and domination of the woman, is a soil in which it is natural for love to blossom."
"I know that that is true," she said.
"And the bondage of chains is then, not unoften, succeeded by the bondage of love."
"And think how deep is the bondage of the female slave," said the girl, "whose bondage is the bondage of both chains and love."
"Yes," I said. Her bondage was indeed the deepest bondage in which a human female could conceive of herself being placed, being only, strictly, the property of her beloved master.
"Do you know something else?" she asked.
"What?" I asked.
"You are my friend," she said.
"Beware that you are not quirted, a hundred strokes," I said.
"You are my friend," she said. "I know that it is true."
I did not bother responding to her. How preposterous was the girl's conjecture. Did she not know she was naught but a female slave?
"Can masters and slaves be friends?" she asked.
"Yes," I said. "But the girl, of course, is always to be kept in the perfection of her slavery."
"Of course," she said. "Master," she said.
"Yes," I said.
"I love Canka," she said. "But I displeased him. What if he doesn't want me any longer? What if he sells me or gives me away?"
"I do not think he will do that," I said.
"How am I to act when I return to his lodge?" she asked. "What am I to do?"
"You are a slave," I said. "Be loving, obedient and pleasing, fully."
"I shall try," she said.
She was not in the position of the helplessly loving female slave at the feet of a beloved master who regarded her with indifference as merely another of his women, or was even cold to her, perhaps disdaining her as a trivial, meaningless possession.
To be sure, such a girl, particularly a love slave, occasionally desires to feel the stroke of the lash, wanting to feel pain at the hands of a beloved master, wanting to be whipped by him because she loves him, in this way symbolizing to herself her relationship to him, that of slave to master, her acceptance of that relationship, and her rejoicing in it.
More than once I had seen a begging, tearful slave torn from the arms of a beloved master, to be bound and led away on a Cosian leash.
"Master!" came from within the trunk. "Master, oh, beloved Master, help me. I beg of you to help me, Master! Please, Master, if you can hear me, help me! Help me!"
But I did not think she would wish to displease him. And, too, once she had felt the whip, once it had made it clear to her what she was, once it had confirmed her bondage upon her, once it had imprinted upon her an understanding of what could be done to her, I did not think it likely that she would be eager to feel it soon again, even lightly, even in the hands of a beloved master, one to whom she had surrendered everything, one to whom she belonged, totally.
"Please let me go to her, just for a moment, please, my beloved master!" but the leash restrained her. "Oh!" she wept, in misery, held, helpless to approach me. But then he advanced toward me, letting her hurry before him.
On this world she had become so aware of the stirrings in her own blood, confronted with his physicality, that she, in her own complementary, soft, vulnerable, beautiful physicality, longed to be taken in his arms, longed to yield to him as the property he owned, longed to be put ecstatically, in rapture, to the ruthless pleasures of her beloved master.
Oh, take me, beloved Master, she thought. I am yours! I am ready! Be merciless! Be ruthless! Take me! Take me!
Or perhaps it is a test which, once passed, is done with, and we may then enter the arms of our beloved master as no more than a surrendered slave, nothing held back, a slave now confessed as needful in general but, in the specific case, blissful within the arms of a beloved master.
There was then a soft, rapturous, prolonged, grateful, inarticulate cry from within the tent, partly muffled, for the master had perhaps placed his hand firmly over the mouth of the slave, that she might not disturb the camp. In a moment his hand must have been removed from her lips, for Ellen heard, "Thank you, thank you, beloved Master! I love you, Master! I love you, Master!"
Kind master, beloved master, thought Ellen.
"Thank you, beloved Master!" said Donna, joyfully.
Obviously she was furious at this humiliation, but she remained on her knees. How different she was from the impassioned, eager, tender, vulnerable loving slave who wants so much to be on her knees, and knows she belongs there, before her beloved master.
"You stood before me, you protected me," cried Paula. "You are my master, my beloved master!"
To be the single slave of a beloved Master is a common hope amongst kajirae.
"Do not fear, beloved mentor," said Xenon. "Geoffrey of Harfax is a man of honor."
"I trust, beloved mentor," said Xenon, "no one will recognize you."
"I do not understand, beloved mentor," said Xenon.
"Turn back, beloved mentor," said Xenon.
"Beloved mentor," said a voice.
"It is Xenon," said Seremides.
Oh, dark, mysterious, subtle, beloved mighty forces of nature! How the world has so casually shaped our species, with such bountiful, thoughtless beneficence, shaping with wise, terrible, tender hands both men and women, giving us as gifts to one another, that they as masters will not be denied their slaves, and that we as slaves will not be denied our masters!
"I, too, am an animal," said Peisistratus, "from the Kur view. And would it not be demeaning to you, beloved of Agamemnon, to be caged alone, and I left free?"
First, however, allow me to thank you, on behalf of our world, for your efforts, long ago, on behalf of our beloved officer, Zarendargar, efforts which obviously brought you into disrepute with your masters, the Priest-Kings of Gor."
"Do not mind my purse," said the man, hoarsely, intensely, weakly, "save my companion, my beloved Pechia. They seized her." He then pointed in a direction. "That way!" he said.
To my delight, even Torm, of the Caste of Scribes, appeared at the tables. I was honored that the little scribe had separated himself from his beloved scrolls long enough to share my happiness, only that of a warrior.
I longed for my city, and for my father, the magnificent Matthew Cabot, once Ubar, now Administrator of Ko-ro-ba, and for my friends, the proud Older Tarl, my master-at-arms, and Torm, the cheerful, grumbling little scribe who regarded even sleep and food as part of a conspiracy to separate him from the study of his beloved scrolls;
"Noble, glorious Ubara," he said, "hope of Ar, light of the world, most beautiful of all women, we are in great danger. Accompany me. Outside a cloak and hood are waiting. Surely you recognize me, Seremides, once first sword of the Taurentians, your beloved servant, always loyally at the foot of your throne. At my plea I have been commissioned by the Ubar of Cos, the noble Lurius of Jad, to bring you safely to Cos, our ally in the venture to save Ar from the tyranny of Marlenus."
"Then leave the plaza," he said. "Go home. It is dangerous here. Guardsmen of Ar and Taurentians have risen! They intend to betray and depose Marlenus! Decius Albus, beloved servitor of the Ubar, is trying to stop them!"
"It was regrettable," he said, "a sudden, thoughtless act, which, in the moment, I could not help an act expressing my horror, my indignation, my outrage, at the attempt on the life of my beloved shogun."
"Beloved Mira," cried Radish, looking at Mira, wildly, "what shall I do?"
Mira shrank back, startled. "I am only a slave," she said. "You are a free woman."
"My Milo, my Milo!" wept Appanius, looking down at the much-beaten slave. "The most beautiful slave in Ar! My beloved slave! My beloved Milo!"
He prodded her from him, angrily, with his foot. "Misery!" he said. "her very eyes are like those of my beloved slave!"
"My life is in your hands," wept Aynur. "Please, sweet, beloved Gail, my favorite, beloved sister in bondage, be kind, be merciful!"
Aynur did not now have her talmit, that symbol of authority. She did not now have her switch.
"I am sorry I was cruel to you!" said Aynur. "I am sorry! Am sorry!"
No longer was she first girl. She was now naught but another slave. And a rather pretty one. There was no special reason, I now saw, why she have been first girl, any more than several of the others.
"Please, beloved Gail," she wept.
It was a simple arousal tie, the sort of tie which well reminds a woman she is a slave. To be sure, it was perhaps a bit more severe, or cruel, than was necessary, and scarcely one in which one would be likely to place a beloved slave.
Lapses in slaves are seldom overlooked by Gorean masters. Discipline helps us keep well in mind that we are slaves, that our necks are locked in the collars of our masters. Even the most beloved of slaves is seldom permitted to forget she is a slave, and only a slave.
Never had I seen Eve so provoked, so wild, so bestial.
"Steady, steady, my sweet, my gentle, precious beloved!" said Lord Grendel, softly, soothingly.
I was far from the Sardar Mountains, far from the Priest-Kings of Gor. I had failed my city, my beloved Talena, my father, my friends.
It now seems to me that if I had simply returned to Gor, and to my city, my father, my friends and my beloved Talena, I might not have cared to enter the Sardar, that I would not have cared to relinquish the joys of life to inquire into the secrets of those dark mountains.
I have been unable to learn the fate of my father, my friends, my warrior companions, and my beloved Talena, she who was the daughter of Marlenus, who had once been Ubar of Ar my sweet, fierce, wild, gentle, savage, beautiful love, she who is my Free Companion, my Talena, forever the Ubara of my heart, she who burns forever in the sweet, lonely darkness of my dreams.
"Ar's Station," said a man, "has been well treated by Cos."
"Do not respond to that," I said to Marcus, and drew him back a bit from the public boards, to the edge of the crowd. The young warrior's face was flushed.
"Perhaps Seremides can save us," said a man.
"Or the intercessions of our beloved Talena," said another.
"Do not listen to her, beloved Talena!" called a man.
"You are an upstart," said Claudia. "You are a Cosian puppet!"
"I am your Ubara!" cried Talena.
"Do you give orders to she who is First in Tharna?" asked the Tatrix.
"No, Beloved Tatrix," said Dorna the Proud.
"Who, Serpent," asked the Tatrix, "supplied the gold? From whom came the letters of instruction?"
"I do not know, Beloved Tatrix," whined Ost. "The letters and the gold were delivered by a helmeted warrior."
"To the urt with him!" sneered Dorna the Proud.
Ost writhed, squealing for mercy. Thorn kicked him to silence him.
"What more do you know of this plot against the throne?" asked Lara of the sniveling Ost.
"Nothing, Beloved Tatrix," he whimpered.
But the hands of Lara were extended, palms up, and she lifted them slightly; it was a gracious gesture that spoke of mercy.
"Thank you, Beloved Tatrix," whimpered Ost, his eyes bursting with tears, "Thank you!"
"To the mines with him," she said.
"No, Beloved Tatrix, no!" cried Ost.
The woman in the silver mask approached. "Hail to our Beloved Tatrix!" she cried. It was Dorna the Proud.
"And you are excessively generous," I added.
The Tatrix squirmed in my arms.
"Less," said Dorna the Proud, "would insult our Beloved Tatrix."
The Tatrix walked across the pillar, regal in those tattered robes, and stood over me. She pointed across the plains, toward Tharna. "Warrior," said she, "if you were to remain long enough on this pillar you would see processions come to welcome me back to Tharna."
The voice of Dorna the Proud drifted across the pillar. "I think not, Beloved Tatrix," she said.
I had stopped many passersby, particularly in the larger streets, making inquiries. I had even stopped in some of the more respectable taverns, those in which free women, without difficulty, might enter. The people seemed enthusiastically appreciative of the governance of the Tatrix and made light of shortages. They discounted and belittled rumors of discontentment or unrest in Corcyrus. Things in Corcyrus, it seemed, were much as Ligurious had assured me. The people were supportive of the policies of the palace, loyal to the state and personally devoted to their beloved Tatrix.
"Of course," said Decius Albus. "We have no secrets from great Marlenus, our beloved Ubar.
Do you wish to attract the attention of every bounty hunter, thief, and rogue on Gor to the palace of our beloved and glorious Lurius, the wise, compassionate, and noble ruler of Cos?
"If I should see fit," said Seremides, "I can, on any day, at any Ahn, make contact with our glorious, beloved Lurius. In the meantime I think our precautions to conceal my presence are sufficient."
with his accent and rank, on so sensitive a mission? Do you wish to attract the attention of every bounty hunter, thief, and rogue on Gor to the palace of our beloved and glorious Lurius, the wise, compassionate, and noble ruler of Cos?
"Now," said Decius Albus, "we wait humbly upon the decision of our beloved Ubar, Marlenus, the voice of law in Ar, to adjourn the court until tomorrow at the Tenth Ahn."
Finally, let me congratulate our valued, skilled friend, yours and mine, and Ar's, the noble Decius Albus, a man with a marvelous legal mind, and the trade advisor to our beloved Ubar, Marlenus, for his brilliant work on behalf of the state. Few, if any, I am sure, could construct so weighty and compelling a case against a client, in this case, unfortunately, mine."
"Now that our beloved Ubar is present, may the Priest-Kings favor him, this court is once more in sober session. Noble jurors, have you, after considering with care, patiently, and at length, the indisputable facts in this case and the testimony of numerous reliable witnesses, reached a decision?"
"And in the couching laws of Marlenus, our beloved Ubar," said Hemartius, "the woman who so reduces herself as to couch with, or prepare to couch with, a male slave becomes herself a slave, and the slave of the male slave's master."
"I fear it is not clear at all, Deputy Counselor," said Decius Albus. "At the time of the restoration of our beloved Ubar, Marlenus, Talena disappeared from Ar.
"But later, clearly," said Decius Albus, "you were again enslaved, that in accordance with the couching laws of our beloved Ubar, Marlenus.
Then at last, our beloved Marlenus, after his long and tragic absence, returned to our beloved Ar.
"You opposed him, beloved Ubara!" cried a man. "You tried to warn us! You did what you could! We would not listen to you! It is we, the others, who are guilty, not you!"
This sort of cry was taken up elsewhere in the crowd, as well. There were numerous protests concerning Talena's apparent willingness to accept, and share, the guilt of Ar.
"No," cried Talena. "I should have acted. Rather than witness the shame of Ar I should have plunged a dagger into my own breast!"
"No! No!" cried men.
"It would have been a tiny, if futile, symbolic gesture," she cried, "but I did not do it. Thus I, too, am guilty!"
Roars of protest greeted this remark on the part of the Ubara. I saw several men weeping.
"You chose to live, to work for the salvation of Ar!" cried a man.
"We owe everything to you, beloved Ubara!" cried another.
"Beloved Vancius!" I heard.
"Who are you?" Vancius was asking.