The Mask

 

Wendi gave a nervous smile to her uncle, Jim Edward, as the limo slowed to a halt. Her uncle was her advocate for inclusion of the Prosper Society, a rare honour for a young woman. The men in the society met every full moon, while women were invited only four times during the year, coinciding with the change of seasons. This was the most important meeting of the year, when summer was to officially start.

Since she was sixteen she had accompanied her uncle to the meetings. Her parents, who were not high enough in social standings to attend themselves, felt fortunate her mother's brother took upon himself took bring her along.

This was a different meeting for Wendi. Ladies between the ages of twenty-one to twenty-five were given special treatment. Of the one hundred and fifty-seven guests at the meeting, there were twenty-four females that wore only a floor length heavy cloak and a mask.

Each mask was carefully made by the wearer. Wendi’s ceramic pink mask was decorated with brightly coloured feathers along the sides, obscuring the leather straps holding it around her head. Only her eyes and her red lipstick mouth were visible.

This was Wendi's third time wearing a cloak, and her first two visits resulted in her holding a whip card. There were slightly more cloaked women this year and she hoped her odds at obtaining a whip card held. She looked at the other masked women.

She waited in the car until a uniformed doorman opened the car door, and extended his arm to help her out. The cloak was fastened only at the collar and she used her free hand to keep the cloak closed at the centre. Her uncle immediately took her elbow and escorted into the mansion.

She climbed the steps slowly, hearing other guests move toward the massive oak doors. Men were dressed in formal wear, and most of the women wore exotic dresses and jewellery. She noticed another female dressed in a cloak and mask, seeing the same nervous look in her eyes.

Inside music played from a quartet, servants passed around trays of refreshment and food. Wendi was too anxious to eat, but quickly consumed two glasses of red wine.

"That is enough alcohol. You must face what may happen with courage and not with your senses dulled." Her uncle placed a hand on her wrist when she reached for a third glass from a tray.

She nodded, knowing she had to be brave. She felt his hand stroke her back, and slide down to her waist. It lingered there as he chatted with another couple. The man and wife were older and the woman looked relaxed and happy, knowing her time of being chosen was past. As the woman made a comment that Wendi must feel honored to participate in the ritual, her uncle's hand dropped lower, gently pressing her ass. She was not surprised. Over time he had tried to be more familiar with her and she had never had the courage, or the will, to stop him. She responded to the woman's compliment in a quiet voice, feeling his fingers squeeze her cheek. Then the hand moved away.

They approached a man with two women by his side. A rust colour beard made his middle-aged face look older. He introduced his wife, wearing a dark blue dress, and her sister, Mandy. The sister wore a cloak, but didn't act as if she was concerned about upcoming event later in the evening. She acted saucily, waving her hand around as she held a glass of wine. The cloak gave flashes of her body that Wendi found hard to ignore. Her mask was a midnight blue with a half moon on the left side. Wendi thought the mask made her look confident while acknowledging the special occasion.

"Aren't you the least bit concerned about what's about to happen?" Wendi asked.

"No, why should I be? Most likely I'll be one of the naked females that get to hold a whip. I've been seen naked before, and actually I like being looked at."

"But what happens if you get the other card?" Wendi's voice quivered.

A shrug. "Then life gets very interesting." She moved forward, pressing against Wendi. "Maybe I'll get do you."

Wendi gave a quiet gasp. She was shocked another woman would be so direct to her. Yet she held her place, feeling the body heat and the push of breasts on her own.

An unformed man walked about the room, gently shaking a small bell.

Jim announced. "It is time."