Wonderland Wednesday! Chapter Nineteen: Down the Rabbit Hole – Alice in Shifterland (18+)
It’s been a long time since I’ve hosted a Wonderland Wednesday, but I haven’t forgotten about all the characters I love from Down the Rabbit Hole so please enjoy chapter nineteen. As always, this story is for adults only, so if you aren’t at least eighteen (18) years old, get outta here!
Alice craned her neck to peer out the curtain of the carriage she and Hat had been ushered into after they’d disembarked the ship. Wit and royal guard followed behind on horseback. Most of Davidson’s crew had never sat atop a horse so a rider went ahead to Rouge Palace and wound soon be headed back with a wagon for them and the considerable amount of gear they’d brought with them. Alice soft of wished they’d have been able to drive a tank through the rabbit hole. The closer they got to the castle the more her stomach turned. She still couldn’t believe she was going to be expected to subdue a chicken-footed, bucked-toothed freak show of a monster. At least Davidson was nearby. He’d refused to let her out of earshot so a slight breach of etiquette had been allowed so he could ride next to the carriage driver.
Though her current ride was an improvement over her time at sea, the bobbling and jarring did nothing to help her nausea. She could still smell the sea air and the fish from the merchant booths set up near the docks.
Hat tilted his head as he studied her face. “Are you sure you shouldn’t see a doctor. You look unwell.”
She frowned. “If you’d thrown up everything you ate for the past few days, you’d look like shit too.”
He sighed. “I didn’t mean it like that.”
“I just need a couple of hours on dry land and maybe some ginger tea.”
“I’m sure they’ll be accommodating but don’t say too much. We don’t know who we can trust. They’ll be looking to use you however they can.”
“Hmm.” She let his words sink in as she peeked out the window again. They’d traded the main square for a route that seemed remarkably woodsy. “Rural kingdom?”
“Somewhat. A large number of the population is deer shifters, including the Royals.”
She admired the greenery. Both sides of the path were surrounded by tall dense rows of trees of which she’d never seen the like. They bore small pink and white flowers and a purple fruit about the size of a plum but shaped like a starfruit. As she breathed in their sweet fragrance calm tranquility settled her nerves. “What are those?”
“Gogo trees,” she replied absently.
“No, the trees are Mullers. They grow well in this area. The gogos and the wine they make with them are the Red Kingdom’s largest exports.”
As the horses clomped along, Hat filled her in on the names and particulars of some of the royals she’d be meeting. Most of them seemed far tamer than the people she’d met in the Kingdom of Hearts. At the very least, she didn’t fear her head would be chopped off.
Until the castle came into view, Wit kept an eye on the tree line and his revolver ready to draw if bandits approached. Once the street widened, people in tattered clothing began to line the road, waving and cheering as if they were in a parade. People dived toward the silver coins Hat and Alice tossed from the carriage. Some boys on their knees shoved a few coins into their pockets while a woman tightly held a couple in her fist. They didn’t have the lithe frames common among deer shifters. The two boys, in particular, were broad shouldered and had noses that pushed downward like cats. These are Alice’s people…refugees.
Soon their horses crossed over the dirt path onto pavement stones as they closed in of Castle Rouge. The carriage stopped in front of an open gate long enough for two soldiers to question the driver and direct him. As the progression resumed, Wit broke formation and approached a soldier wearing a red uniform jacket and black pants. His pointy-tipped, red hat made him look like a butt plug. “We have additional personnel and equipment waiting at the docks. I need to double check and make sure transportation has been sent.”
The man stared at him through glassy, almost wet-looking brown eyes before lifting his square jaw and nodding. “Very well.” He pointed Wit in the direction of the stables and gave him the name of a groom who could help him.
After offering his a thank you, Wit veered off in the opposite direction of the carriage.
Alice smoothed her dress as Hat waited for one of the King’s servants to open the door before exiting the carriage. He stood to the side and waited for Alice to emerge; taking her hand once she stepped out onto the pavement stones. A welcoming party consisting of six people waited to receive them. Based on their red dress uniform jackets and regalia, two men flanking the rest of the group were clearly soldiers. They wore crisp black pants and shoes shined to mirrors. Their white caps were pulled down over their foreheads, the bills partially obstructing Alice’s view of their faces. The other two men present wore more ornate outfits and jewelry that reminded Alice of things she’d seen Henry Cavil and Jonathan Rhys Meyers wear in scenes from the Tudors—lavish fabrics, puffy sleeves, feathered hats and gemstones as large as pecans though the older of the two wore a simple, thin, gold crown over his well-coiffed, chin-lengthen gray hair. Alice assumed he was the King.
As she stepped forward, she noticed his majesty’s eyes widened before his gaze swept down over her curves, settling for some time on the undergarment she had proudly turned into a top before traveling down to leer at her exposed knees, calves and ankles. His cheeks flushed as the light blue of his eyes darkened, dilating, but he did his best to cover his lust, offering a low courtly bow. “Queen Alice, I presume. I am King Burgundy, and I am most pleased to make your acquaintance.”
“Likewise, I’m sure.” Alice copied the curtsy Wit had taught her earlier before the King turned to the other Aristocratic male.
“My eldest son, Prince Buck—I hope the two of you will get along well.”
“Your Majesty.” As the Prince bowed, she returned a curtsy. Alice couldn’t say she wasn’t affected by his good looks. Light brown curls with silver highlights crowned his head, accenting his sapphire blue eyes and warm skin tones. His body language dripped with confidence right down to his toothy, million-dollar smile, but still, something about the glitter of his eyes when he glanced at Hat—it happened for only a split second, but that was all it took to make her wary of this man.
After a long pause, Alice nodded toward the other members of the party. “And these two lovely ladies?”
The King barely spared either of the girls a glance. “Hmm, yes. I understand you came unaccompanied so these maidens, Gretel and Gerda, will be serving you.” Both girls smiled but were careful not to make eye contact as they made low curtsies. Their Victorian style dresses covered them from their dainty necks down to their ankles and had sleeves long enough to hide their wrists as well. Their hair had been braided and pinned up behind their heads, and they looked enough alike, she felt sure they were related, perhaps sisters or at least cousins. Alice started to return the gesture, but Hat put his hand on her arm and tugged slightly. “Nice to see you again, Burgundy.”
“Oh, likewise, my boy. Likewise. Shall we get out of the elements and get some refreshments?”
“That would be most appreciated.” As expected, Hat locked his arm through Alice’s but she repressed a gasp as Prince Buck followed suit, taking her other arm. The heat coming from his body made her want to gnaw the limb off and run away.
Alice observed everything she could as they walked through the courtyard to a small banquet area set up for them to refresh themselves. Tables with fine clothes had been set up under colorful tents with platters filled with a variety of cheeses, fruits, and other hors d’oeuvres. Perhaps the King was being considerate by allowing the group to fuel up in private, but Alice had a niggling feeling he had designed the affair with an ulterior motive of pushing her and Buck together, especially considering the way he kept distracting Hat.
She looked around. “I can’t imagine what’s keeping Wit and the others.”
Buck frowned the minute she mentioned the rabbit-shifter’s name but quickly covered by bringing his glass to his lips. His throat moved as he swallowed his wine. “A separate area for soldiers and other help was set up near the kitchen.”
A bitter taste lingered in her mouth as she chewed on his words, picturing Wit, Davidson and his men being served bowls of gruel. “I see…” She choked back her anger. Calm down…we need these assholes. “How kind.”
The smile curving across Buck’s lips didn’t reach his eyes as he dipped his head. He leaned in closer, his hot breath on her face. “Of course, Your Majesty. Later tonight, there shall be a feast to celebrate your arrival. I hope you would do me the honor of several dances and perhaps even a walk around the gardens.”
“Of course.” She pushed back her chair. “But for now, I am quite tired. Would it be possible for Gerda to see me to my room?” She nodded to the beauty that had been stationed nearby ready to pour her more drink or fetch anything she required.
Buck’s gaze never moved in the young woman’s direction as he addressed her. “Ensure the Queen has every comfort.” His tone was neither harsh nor kind.
“Right away, your Highness.” The poor girl’s lithe frame could barely keep time with her the urgency of her movements. As soon as they were out of view of the others, Alice could almost see the stress draining from Gerda’s body as she breathed easier.
Alice paused and turned to face the servant. “How long have you been serving in the castle, Gerda?”
She looked away shyly, gazing at the floor. “For as long as I can remember at least since my brother was born.”
She nodded. “Prince Buck.”
Alice’s eyes widened and her jaw dropped. “Are you kidding me? You’re Princess Gerda?”
“Yes, your Majesty.” She bowed her head.
At a loss for words, Alice turned and began walking again, finally slowing to allow the girl to lead the away again once she realized she had no idea where she was going. After a long bout of silence, they reached a set of ornate double doors, but Alice couldn’t concentrate well enough to appreciate them. “So you’re actually older than him?”
“Yes, your, Majesty.” She opened the door and began to present the room, showing Alice the particulars.
“Gretel as well? She’s your sister?”
“Yes, your Majesty.”
“Don’t call me your Majesty anymore. Just Alice is fine.”
Gerda blushed. “I couldn’t possibly.”
“At least when we’re alone.”
“Yes, your…yes.” She bowed her head slightly before slipping out of the room, closing the door behind her. Alice’s head spun around like a whirlwind. She yanked back the bed’s posh comforter and crawled beneath the sheets of the grand, wooded poster bed, losing consciousness as soon as her head hit the pillow.
The sound of three loud knocks against the door stirred Alice from the nightmare she’d been having. The food she’d eaten earlier sat on her stomach like a rock as she sat up and then turned to the side leaving her feet dangling over the edge of the mattress. She looked down at her chest and straightened her clothing, ensuring she was decent. “Come in.” The door creaked as it slowly opened, finally revealing Hat standing in the doorway.
“How are you?” He closed the door behind him.
She frowned. “I hate it here. Where is Wit? Where is Davidson?”
He pinched the bridge of his nose. “Guess.”
She jumped off the high bed onto her feet, nearly tripping. “Servants’ quarters!”
He nodded. “That’s right.” He chuckled. “Come on, Alice. Did Davidson take his meals with you and sleep in the master bedroom or did he have an area set aside for him?”
She plopped her fanny on a bench in front of the foot of the bed, frowning at being called out on her hypocrisy. “I would have been happy for him to eat with me but most of the time he wouldn’t even when I asked.”
“No, because it would have been uncomfortable for him too. The division is there for a reason. It ensures people do the job they are paid to do. Wit and I blurred the lines because he’s been serving me since we were children.”
“Well, they still suck around here. Do you know those two girls they have serving me are Princesses?”
He shrugged. “It’s not unusual to have young women from noble houses serve the royal family as ladies in waiting, cupbearers, squires.”
“But they are the royal family, and they’re made to wait on their crappy brother.” She folded her arms across her chest as he knelt down in front of her, his eyes glimmering with lust as his lips brushed across her knee.
“I see. My love doesn’t like Prince Buck.” His fingers strummed down her leg as his kisses moved up her thigh.
“Nope, you won’t distract me this way.” She attempted to push her legs together put he held both of her knees. Even as the juncture between her legs throbbed, she squirmed, placing her hand on the crown of his head and pushing him away. “No. I’m going to wallow in my hatred.”
Sitting up, he sighed. “Very mature.
“I think he was hitting on me.”
Hat laughed through his nose as he rolled his eyes. “Yes, of course, you’re a beautiful queen with a bordering kingdom they’ve stewarded for a very long time. Frankly, I’m surprised they haven’t already made any marriage demands—if not for the pesky prophesy, Jabberwocky and the fact that you’re already fucking…I mean allied with a prince from a richer, more powerful kingdom, I’m sure they would be applying a little more heat. Trust me…it’s coming.”
Alice grimaced. “No way in hell. I want revenge.”
“For what?” He threw up his hands.
“For their shitty inheritance rules, their women’s fashions, the way they talk to girls. Let’s spike all the desserts for tonight with your cupcake formula.”
He squinted, rubbing his temples. “So your idea of revenge is to have an orgy with these people?”
She tossed a pillow at his head hard enough to knock his hat flying backward. “Dummy! We won’t eat any of the desserts. We’ll just move it around on our plates as if we’re eating it.”
He looked behind him staring at his hat before shooting her an angry glare. “You almost hit my handsome mug. He ran his palm over his rugged jaw.
She rolled her eyes. “It’s a pillow, not a paperweight. I don’t foresee any permanent damage. Those pricks will eat a bunch of sweets and make asses of themselves.”
He lifted his chin, eyeing her as if she’d lost her mind. “Since they don’t value women and treat their highborn girls like slaves, what do you think a bunch of horny old nobles hopped up on my cupcakes will do to the female servants?”
Her eyes widened and she hung her head. “Shit. Scratch that plan.” A light knock on the door drew their attention. “Wit?”
The rabbit-shifter strolled in before shutting the door and locking it behind him. He pointed at Hat’s position on the floor and then over to Alice. “What’s all this with the door left unsecured? We’re in uptight, stick-up-the-ass-land. There are laws.”
Hat stood. “Doesn’t matter. The Queen is acting like a spoiled child.”
Wit lifted an eyebrow. “Seriously?”
She huffed, crossing her arms over her chest. “I’ve…I’ve been.” Her whiney voice betrayed how close to crying she was. “Stuck on a boat…and now.” A single tear ran down her cheek. “I don’t even know where my cat is!” She poked out her bottom lip.”
The prince rolled his eyes. “That trouble maker can take care of himself.” Hat turned his attention to Wit and shook his head. “I have no idea what to do about this.”
Wit chuckled. “Of course you do.” A slow, sexy smile spread across his face as he lifted and dropped his eyebrows. “What would you do if it was me?”
Hat’s eyes widened as he tented his hands. “But you’re you and she’s a queen—I thought we discussed…”
“This isn’t you venting your anger. It’s what she needs.” Wit walked over to Alice and took her by the arm, harshly yanking her up off the bench as Hat removed his jacket.
“Wha—“ Wit dropped his index finger on her lips. “No talking. Stay quiet or I’ll gag you.” She gulped, her heart rate accelerating as her pussy tingled. Remaining silent, she watched as Hat unbuttoned the right cuff of his shirt sleeve.
She trembled as Wit stripped her naked, his every day gentle touch forgot as he tugged and yanked, making short work of the task and leaving her exposed to the cool air. She rubbed her arms as the tiny hairs on them stood upright. Hat finished rolling his sleeve up to his elbow before he directed her over his lap.
Wit helped her into position, ensuring her palms rested flat against the stately room’s floor. Her bottom rested directly over Hat’s knee, but Wit brought the pillow she’d tossed at the prince, moving her so he could push it beneath her hips. Her head hung down by her hands, giving her an excellent view of her feet as they dangled on the other side.
As Hat’s large palm slid down her back and over her bottom, Alice closed her eyes, concentrating on the heat and weight of his touch. When he lifted his hand, she held her breath. A clapping noise heralded the first blow. “Agghh,” The air in her lungs whooshed out as she lifted her head. He hit the same spot again, intensifying the sting. Alice squealed, kicking her legs.
“What did I say?” Wit didn’t wait for an answer as he stuffed her panties into her mouth. Alice’s eyes widened, struggling against the dry and uncomfortable sensation pushing against her tongue and catching close to her throat.
Hat struck her a third time, still concentrating his efforts on one area, burning the pain into her flesh. The next two smacks came in rapid succession. He paused and she panted as he ran his hand over the offended area. She tightened her abdominal muscles in an effort to push upward, but he placed his free hand on her back, applying enough pressure to hold her in place. He slid his palm between her legs and chuckled. “Wet.”
Her cheeks burned as she imagined the two of them exchanging a smug look. He tugged at his pants’ leg, but without warning, her punishment resumed, a heavy wallop covering the previously spanked spot. She kicked her legs, her tears flowing freely as the throbbing set in over her right cheek. She screamed muffled curses, tensing her body. Thwack! The sound of his hand hitting her flesh resounded just before another explosion of pain.
Alice reached behind her, covering her bottom with her hand. Hat’s laughter mocked her. “Wit.”
Her gorgeous lover stooped in front of her before reaching up and grabbing her hand. He took the other one as well, holding both of them in front of her. “You’re doing well. Not much longer now.” She lifted her head, peeking through the veil of blond hair covering her face long enough to lock her gaze on his beautiful eyes and white hair.
Hat struck her three more times, hard, fast and intense blows that took her breath away while sending electrical impulses buzzing across her cunt. “One more.”
She clenched her cheeks as she wept. As the final blow pounded against her ass, a muffled shriek burst from her lips. Hat trailed his fingertips along her spine, gently caressing while encouraging her to let everything go. Ragged breaths pushed out of her mouth as her chest heaved and she rested limply over the prince’s lap. He rubbed her ass while Wit stroked her hair, whispering more sweet words to her. She blubbered, her face hot and damp as the waterworks continued. She cried and sniffled and whimpered until she had no more tears, no more self-pity and a new resolve for all she had to accomplish.
Her head swam and the right side of her butt ached as Wit helped her to her feet. Hat tilted his head toward the bed. “Get up on all fours.” Alice’s heart sank as the realization her punishment wasn’t over hit her. Hesitantly, she crawled on top of the bed, sniveling but unable to cry. “Good.” Hat had dropped the harshness his voice held when he played the disciplinarian and returned to his smooth, sexy timbre. “Head down, ass way up, legs far apart.”
Hopeful, she stayed silent, closing her eyes as she waited for the next command. Wit hopped up on the bed next to her before reaching two fingers into her mouth and pulling out the gag. “Sorry.” He grabbed her neck, pulling her into a kiss. Hungrily, she opened her mouth, lapping at his upper lip just before he broke the kiss and jumped down. Alice turned her head, peaking over her shoulder. Both men stood directly behind her.
“Do you know why you were punished?” Hat’s voice, sexy and smooth like dark chocolate and decadent like the finest red wine, made her want to come.
“Because I was being a brat.”
Wit spoke up. “You were out of sorts—angry, sad, lots of emotions and no clarity to think. Now they’re all purged.”
“You’re going to be favoring one side of your ass when you sit down for quite some time.” Hat laughed and Alice joined him.
“That cheek’s very red and swollen.”
“I’ll bet.” A shiver ran up her spine as Wit leaned in and blew against the offended area before rubbing it down with lotion. She moaned as he roamed her skin, his calloused fingertips stirring her longing.
“Your pussy is pink and swollen and your juices are running down your thighs.” Wit’s soft lips brushed against her hip.
“Make love to me?” She needed them now.
“Yep.” Wit shed his clothing and crawled into the bed. Hat took more time, slowly working on his buttons. Once the prince stood naked, his huge cock swaying, Wit held out his hand and helped him climb aboard. The three settled beneath the sheets, warm skin colliding, as they kissed, caressed and shared their bodies in multiple combinations until full satisfaction had been achieved. Skin slick with perspiration and the sounds of ragged breathing resonating in the air, the three lied next to each other, limbs overlapping or entwined as they struggled to regain their senses.
“I want to leave tonight right after the feast.” Alice trailed a finger down Hat’s arm.
“Huh?” Wit turned his head, eyeing her.
“Just me and Davidson, under the cover of night to prevent any attempts to stall us.”
Hat had barely caught his breath. “Ab…solutely not!”
“Where’s this coming from?” Alice found Wit’s response was far more diplomatic and less bossy and chauvinistic.
“I have a bad feeling these Red Kingdom Royalty are going to be a millstone around our necks. If Davidson and I make our way to the portal, you can feign ignorance, ride out to search and meet us.”
Hat sighed. “Prince Buck is going with his. His personal guard—there are six of them—will accompany him.”
“What the fuck?” Alice shifted her weight, turning her head to glare at Hat.
Wit sat upright. “I concur. What the fuck?”
The prince sat up pushing his sweat-drenched hair away from his face. “I’m sorry. I hadn’t mentioned it yet because I didn’t realize it would aggravate Alice so much and because…”
“You knew how I’d feel about it.” Wit’s nostrils flared.
“Yeah…what could I do? We needed the use of the portal. I had to negotiate. Considering what Buck’s always believed…there was no way he’d let us go without him.”
Alice looked from Wit to Hat and back to Wit, her heart wrenching as she noted the rabbit-shifter’s pained expression. She pinched Hat.
“Ow.” He shot her a dirty look. “Why?”
“What did you do to him?” She pointed at Wit.
“Nothing.” Wit’s face lost all expression before he rolled out of bed and began to put his clothes on.”
“Wit?” Alice started to follow him but Hat gripped her wrist.
“I have some work to do to prepare for tomorrow. I think it’s best if all of us leave at first light as planned.” Once he was dressed, he leaned over and kissed Alice and then Hat. “See you at the feast tonight. Apparently, even a few commoners received invites.”
Alice glared at Hat as Wit bolted out the door. “What the hell!”
“It’s a long-standing feud, considering we’ve known each other all of our lives. Buck doesn’t approve of my relationship with Wit—he feels he’s beneath me…beneath him as well.”
“Why is it any of his damn business?”
“Buck thinks he’s the silver-tipped buck of prophecy, after all, his parents named him after it.”
Alice grimaced. “Ugh.”
Her stomach roiled as her heart slowly crept up into her throat. “Could he be?” She choked the question out in a whisper.
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