Prelude to an Unavoidable Reckoning
I dreamed of a giant gnat choking me on its huge, human cock.
When I woke I was very hard and extremely confused, until I recalled inhaling a bug in the woods just before I’d stuck my dick down Puck’s willing throat.
My hand drifted to my erection and I teased myself, remembering the way his pretty lips had felt around me. The sensation of the steel ring had added to an all-around stellar experience. Even the humiliation of the cock-blocking insect-inhale didn’t matter in the long run.
And now…now, I was going to have a quick lunch and head to the grooming barn with my equipment, so I had an excuse—a very good one—to watch Puck and his two ponyboy shift-mates, buffed and caged and shined in preparation for their afternoon training sessions.
Watching the grooming procedures the previous day had been tantalizing. Watching the object of my intensifying obsession being carefully and tenderly prepared for training would be something else entirely.
I happened to pass Kamal on my way downstairs.
“Are you taking photos in the grooming barn this afternoon?” he asked.
“Yeah, I’m just getting something to eat. I’ll head over there soon.”
He smiled. “Good. Planning a special treat for you. I hope your camera battery is charged.”
Oh my fuck.
He chuckled as he went on his way.
I grabbed a sandwich in the cafeteria and ate it quickly, then washed my hands and headed upstairs for my equipment.
A short time later, I stepped into the grooming barn and closed the door behind me.
I had miscalculated and, even with eager anticipation for this session, I wasn’t early enough to see the ponyboys come around the partition. The three young men were already standing naked under hot water, their wrists bound above, cocks caged, gags placed, with the stable hands doing their work. I stopped dead, mouth going dry, gaze immediately captured by the slimmest ponyboy bound between the other two.
Puck was facing the other way, but I would recognize that sweet plum of an ass anywhere. My mouth pooled with saliva as I watched Liv rub the loofa aggressively over Puck’s back and buttocks as if she were a prison warden—rough and pragmatic. From his little grunts of pleasure, I could tell he was enjoying the procedure.
She noticed me and smiled. “Oliver. You’d better get your stuff out. We’ll be done soon.”
“Sure. Sorry, I’m late.”
I fumbled with my gear as my gaze kept returning to delicious Puck under the shower. Finally, I slotted the Canon into the holder on my tripod.
The very moment I looked at the viewer to make sure the camera was aimed properly, Puck turned his head and stared at me, his gaze pinning me with an energy I tried to decipher. It was the old Puck, the one who seemed angry at everything, gazing at me with his chin held high, his short hair plastered to his head, the ball gag spreading that beautiful mouth.
All the breath left my body as my dick jerked in my shorts and I recalled feeling those lips around me that very morning.
I lifted my gaze from the viewer and met Puck’s angry stare with a similar force. I wasn’t backing down. I knew this was either a way he responded instinctively to submission, or a personal quirk that made those moments of sweetness even more valuable.
As I watched, he turned his gaze away from me as Liv ran the loofah over the rest of his luscious body. Perhaps he was embarrassed to have me see him like this. But he knew I would have to photograph him in the grooming barn and the stables as part of the agreement I had made with Adam. Hopefully, it wouldn’t affect the affection growing between us. But I couldn’t worry about that. I had a job to do.
I focused on the other two ponyboys, although it was torture to ignore Puck, especially with water coursing over his pale skin and the way he looked while bound to the ceiling of the grooming barn by his slim wrists. I got close-ups of other bare arms and legs, caged cocks and wrists in bondage, all while my heart pounded and memories of my morning encounter with Puck cycled through my brain.
“All right, Puck darling, let’s get you outfitted,” Liv said.
I lifted my gaze from the viewer and watched as Liv released Puck’s captive arms and led him to stand by the table. She glanced at the whiteboard and did a double take, saying “Oh,” as if something surprised her.
I glanced at the board, found Puck’s name and drifted my gaze over Kamal’s written instructions.
Basic plus rope halter (red) and tail (black).
I blinked hard and felt my cock swell as I recalled Kamal’s words to me this morning.
Surprise! Holy fucking hell.
My suddenly clammy hands trembled as I prepared to photograph what was about to happen—hopefully without the camera sliding out of my excited grip.
I took a deep breath as Puck scanned the whiteboard. His eyes widened and he swivelled his head to look at me, cheeks flushing and muscles tensing. His gaze moved to Liv with something like panic in his expression.
“It’s okay, sweetheart. You’ve had the tail before and the halter’s not a big deal. It’s not a bridle so there isn’t a bit.”
She petted Puck gently on his shoulder and walked to the cabinet, opening a drawer and shuffling stuff around before retrieving a bundle of red rope that was knotted to steel rings to make headgear resembling a horse’s halter.
She held it up in front of Puck. “See? It’s nothing, really. Just makes you look like a pretty pony for Kamal. And…” she glanced my way. “Anyone else who might be looking.” She winked at me.
I stared self-consciously at the viewer, embarrassed, because I couldn’t fucking wait for Puck to seem even more pony-like.
He seemed to settle and finally nodded quietly.
“Good boy. First, let’s get the regular gear on you, okay?”
As she placed Puck’s leather harness and pelvic belt, fastening the buckles deftly and quickly, she continued to give him reassuring strokes and pats to make sure he was all right.
I had to give it to the Braided Crop Ranch. Their employees were consistently kind, efficient and perceptive—and so very professional, even in this kinky, boundary-pushing, kind of environment.
Once he had his regular gear on, Liv picked up the rope halter.
“Okay?” she asked. “It’s really not a big deal. I promise.”
Puck stared at the halter, his gaze sliding to me, then back to Liv. After a moment of hesitation, he nodded.
I didn’t take photos of this because I had promised not to identify any of the ponyboys in my images, and Puck wasn’t masked as he would be in the pony show. So I stood there, pretending to fiddle with my settings but watching as Liv placed the halter over Puck’s brown hair and rested the rope pieces over his forehead and behind his ears. Another red strap came up under his chin to connect to the ones in front of his ears on each side.
The soft red bondage rope used to form the halter looked incredible against Puck’s hair and pale skin. Kamal had been right to specify the color, although black would have looked good, too.
“How does that feel?” Liv had removed Puck’s ball gag in order to fit the harness. “You can speak.”
He frowned, but said, “Fine,” in a quiet, chastened voice. He was behaving himself like a good little ponyboy and I drank it up, because I knew once he was with Kamal his attitude might change.
I wonder if he’d be a good ponyboy for me?
The thought came from nowhere and took the breath out of me. I pushed it aside because if I focused on that, I wouldn’t have a hope of concentrating on photography or anything else.
Liv had Puck open his mouth so she could place the ball of the gag between his teeth. His gaze kept flitting to me and I couldn’t tell if me watching made him uneasy or excited. I glanced at his cock in its steel cage and it, at least, seemed on board—swelling and straining in its confines.
“All right. Bend over the table, now,” Liv directed, finding the pony tail designated for Puck in the drawer and holding it up for him.
Puck’s chest, framed by the leather straps of his harness, rose and fell rapidly, like he was panicking again.
“It’s okay. You’ve had your tail before. It’s going to look so pretty, you know.” She winked at me as she settled Puck once again with her kind words and matter-of-fact manner.
This time he didn’t look at me. He fixed his gaze on the table as his forehead creased and he obeyed Liv’s instructions.
I couldn’t help a tiny gasp escaping me as he folded himself fluidly over the edge of the large table, presenting his bare backside to Liv and the others in the room. Adrian, who had finished tacking Andrew and was working on Justin, glanced over and smiled.
“Oooh, that’s a perfect ass, Puck. Don’t worry about showing it off.”
I silently agreed, my gaze transfixed by Puck’s gorgeous globes as Liv gloved up and prepared the tail for insertion.
My breathing ramped up and pretended to be unaffected as she used the fingers of her free hand to part Puck’s cheeks and then pressed the tip of the plug against his sweet, pink hole.
“Open. I’ll be gentle and slow,” she murmured.
Puck had been facing away from me, but now twisted his head around and pinned me with a hooded stare as Liv gently eased the tip of the plug into his ass.
I met that gaze as my lips parted and a small noise left my throat, covered quickly with a pretence of throat clearing. I tore my gaze from his and watched the plug spread him, then flitted it back to see if he’d observed my reaction.
His pupils were blown and his steady gaze caused small explosions to go off inside me as I struggled to pay attention and not dissolve into a million lustful pieces.
“You should probably get some shots of this, Oliver,” Liv commented. “Why don’t you come closer?”
Oh fuck. “Yeah. Yes. Good idea.” I said, clearing my throat again and grabbing my handheld.
Focus, focus. This is your job. Treat it like one.
I moved in close to where Liv stood at Puck’s hip. The plug was halfway in and I lifted my camera and focused on that, forgetting about that hot gaze and the memories from this morning. I clicked images of the plug seating itself between Puck’s cheeks, Liv’s gloved fingers adjusting it and draping the horse hair over his thighs. I hoped my heavy breathing wasn’t too obvious.
“Stand up and face the showers.”
Puck obeyed, rising gracefully with his back to me so I could get photos of him in all his glory, with the harness and arm bands and collar, small glimpses of red rope harness and the buckle of the gag at the back of his head. He was barefoot at the moment and that made him seem even more vulnerable. I photographed his bare feet against the wood of the grooming barn floor.
Liv brought over his socks and boots. “Turn around and put on your trotters, Puck.”
Puck did so, his body swivelling in place with the fluidity of a dancer. Now I could see the soft red rope framing his face, the ball of the gag between his lips, the shiny slide of drool over his chin, and those expressive, desire-filled eyes that seemed to have a direct line to my soul and other, more base, places.
As he bent to put on the grey work socks, and then the Doc Marten boots, I took photo after photo. Close-ups of his fingers on the laces, his bent head, and full body shots of him while his face was hidden. When he stood before me again, now in all his ponyboy gear, I lowered the camera and just stared.
“My God. You are so beautiful.”
I’d said it without thinking, without caring for a moment who was witness to this declaration. It was my truth and my reality and why should I deny those feelings?
All eyes turned to me as I felt the blood heat my cheeks. Puck made a choking noise and coughed, but his gaze remained alert and intent. He looked away but came back to me, blushing but not shying away from my interest at all.
“I can’t argue with you, there,” Liv commented, taking pity on me and pretending this happened every day.
I regretted it now, because we were supposed to be keeping secrets. So I kept my damn mouth shut and simply watched as the last ponyboy was outfitted and the three men were led out of the grooming barn.
“You okay, Oliver?” Adrian asked, when we were alone.
“That Puck is an interesting fellow,” Adrian said, picking up a cloth that had fallen and placing it back on the table. “Pretty as a picture but nasty in the paddock. Or so I’ve heard.”
I licked my lips, playing it cool. “I’ve seen him with Kamal. It’s true.”
Adrian laughed. “Still. I like a spicy ponyboy.”
I narrowed my eyes and must have channelled some big keep-away-from-my-boy energy, because Adrain raised his hands and shook his head.
“Don’t worry. I’ve got a boyfriend. He’s all yours. If you can handle him.”
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to assume.” I ran my free hand through my hair and blew out a puff of air. “I’m not used to feeling this way about…about anyone. Especially about a kinky, gorgeous, oppositional kid with issues.”
“Puck has issues?”
“So says Adam.”
“Hmm. I suppose we all have issues, really. Maybe Puck’s issue is simply Kamal and Kamal’s brand of control.”
I started disassembling my tripod. When I was all packed up I bid Adrian goodbye and headed out to find Kamal and Puck. Kamal had put Puck into that gear specifically for me and I wasn’t going to miss watching him, at least for a little while.
At least until I couldn’t take it anymore.
Lorraine was training Justin, whose dark skin was already glistening with sweat, in the first corral. I gave her a wave before walking over to lean on the fence and watch Kamal and Puck in the second paddock from a distance. I was so overcome by all that had occurred today, I needed to get a grip on myself before I got any closer.
I wasn’t planning to stay long. I didn’t think my heart could take the sight of Puck prancing around the paddock with his flowing black tail and red halter, knowing that this very morning he had been on his knees for me in the woods only a handful of hours ago. I started to feel jealous of Kamal and proprietary over Puck, which was ridiculous, because Puck was here to serve Kamal, not me. For the duration of Puck’s time at the Braided Crop Ranch he was under Kamal’s experienced hand.
If he let me take control of him during his off time, well, then I was just lucky.
I watched them together, and I could already tell Puck was giving Kamal attitude. He didn’t like wearing the tail. Or, he did like it, but hated how much he liked it. Something told me it was the latter.
When Kamal noticed me, he waved. He gave Puck a slap on the rear to propel him on another circle of the paddock.
“Oliver,” Kamal said as he neared.
Kamal flourished an arm at where Puck trotted with some attempt at speed and grace along the edge of the enclosure. “So? What do you think? He looks pretty good kitted out like that, hmm?”
I raised my eyebrows. “Pretty good is an understatement.”
Kamal shrugged. “Maybe. I can see you appreciate the aesthetic.”
“Ah, fuck,” I swore. “I’m already gone for him. What the fuck am I gonna do, Kamal?”
Kamal gazed at me with affection and skepticism. “That didn’t take long. I hope you know what you’re getting into.”
“Probably not. But I can’t seem to help myself.”
Kamal gazed at his recalcitrant ponyboy, now slowing as he neared us and not putting as much effort into his form.
“Fair enough. Do you want me to set up any particular shots for you this afternoon? He may be itching to show off for you.”
Puck returned to Kamal, scowling as much as he could with a ball gag in his mouth, and stopped in front of us, breathing hard and drooling. His hair was already damp with sweat and the sheen on his skin glistened in the afternoon sun. I was pretty sure Puck had heard Kamal’s last remark.
I shook my head. “Nah. I got so many yesterday and in the grooming barn today, I’m a bit overwhelmed, to be honest. I need to spend some time with the images I already have for a few days, before I add any more.
“Don’t forget, the first pony show is on Saturday. You’ll probably want to get some then.”
Puck was regarding me relatively calmly and Kamal noticed. “Will you do me a favour before you go?”
“I want to impress upon young Puck here, that he is a pony at the moment, and thus not possessed of a free spirit. He needs to realize he is merely a pretty pet and nothing more.” Kamal grinned. “If you would come in here and examine him—“
My eyes widened and I started to decline but Kamal kept speaking. “—a cursory examination, Oliver. You won’t need gloves.”
Still, I wasn’t sure if that was a good idea. But Kamal seemed to think so. And Kamal was the boss in this paddock. I bowed to his authority, as a secret part of me thrilled to the prospect of getting my hands on the beautiful, captive, boy.
“Get in here, then,” Kamal said, whipping a leather lead from his pocket and attaching it to the ring on the chin strap of Puck’s rope halter.
I slipped through the fence and stood beside them. “What do you want me to–”
“Stand,” Kamal said to Puck, who widened his stance and lifted his chin, gaze moving off me to some object in the distance as he quivered with emotion. “Steady.”
Kamal reached out and took my hand, laying it on Puck’s bare shoulder. “Just touch him. However you like, but stay away from intimate areas, if you don’t mind. Baby steps. He needs to learn to tolerate others. Not just me.”
“Okay,” I said, my heart pounding and sweat gathering on my nape.
“Pretend you’re in the market for a strong, beautiful pony. You want to check its muscle tone, the smoothness of its coat, check for any problems.” Kamal paused for effect. “So you can make an appropriate offer. Hypothetical, of course.”
I cleared my throat. “Uh huh.”
I really hoped Puck wouldn’t hold this against me. I let my fingers trace over his leather harness and along his side as he continued to avoid my gaze. Mine followed my hand where it drifted over his skin and across the swell of his belly over the pelvic strap. Puck’s muscles tightened and his pores pebbled as I did so. His breath hitched and he seemed filled with tension.
I couldn’t deny the pleasure I received from being able to touch him at Kamal’s command and knowing this was all a part of what Puck had signed on for. The fact that he and I had begun a clandestine interaction outside of his role at the ranch only added to my excitement. I could only hope he felt the same. The last thing I wanted to do was ruin what delicate thing was happening between us. But it would take a stronger man than me to resist Kamal’s request and refusing it might have seemed suspicious.
I walked slowly around Puck, who stood still as a statue, the only movement in the tension of his jaw where it was held open by the gag. This entire situation was a study in submission and objectification, and I didn’t want to disappoint either of them.
My hand drifted over Puck’s hip and along the delicious curve of his ass to the delicate crease where it met his thigh. I felt him shudder.
“You can touch his tail if you like. Just not the plug.”
I nodded, unable to speak as I threaded my fingers through the long black hairs of the tail that cascaded over the backs of Puck’s thighs. He made a sound low in his throat.
“Easy. Good pony. Stay still,” Kamal encouraged. “You’re doing very well.”
I glanced at Kamal. “Is this what you want?”
Kamal laughed. “Well, you can be a little rougher. He might like it.”
My gaze jerked to Kamal’s.
“He’s an animal, Oliver. Touch him like one.”
Kamal placed one hand under Puck’s chin and raised it higher, exposing his long throat. He cupped his other hand around the ponyboy’s neck, keeping Puck’s head angled back and his gaze forced to the sky.
“Now, examine him. Don’t hurt him, obviously, but you don’t have to be so gentle. You’re trying to assess him, remember?”
I was breathing hard now, but I did as Kamal asked and cupped that beautiful ass in my hands, squeezing Puck’s firm glutes as he gasped and swallowed, pinned in Kamal’s grip and subject to my touch.
“Fuck,” I said again, moving my palms over his hips to glide up his belly and abdomen, so I could brush my fingers over his pebbled nipples and squeeze his pectoral muscles where they were framed by the harness. I was standing so close now I could smell the tang of his sweat and hear his quickened breathing.
“So? What do you think?”
“Incredible,” I breathed. “His muscle tone is…it’s perfect.”
I fought my own responses to this intimate examination and started to panic. I needed to get away from what this was doing to me. It was fucking with my body and my head. I was loving it and I didn’t know what that said about me, except that I wanted this boy with my heart and soul and I was starting to feel like I would die if I couldn’t get closer than this.
“All right, Oliver, that’s good. Thank you,” Kamal said, as if aware of my struggle.
I backed up and glanced at Puck’s face. His eyes were wide as he stared upward, cheeks flushed and jaw tight. He strained to be still in Kamal’s strict hold.
When Kamal removed his hand from Puck’s throat, the ponyboy’s head lowered into a more natural position and his gaze met mine with a raw desire that surprised me. He seemed desperate for more, which was exactly how I felt.
I needed to get him alone again. And soon.
I took my leave of them and walked back to the main house fighting a hard-on that didn’t want to go away and an ache in my gut that required more than physical intimacy to soothe it.