Goodwin Prescott

the Race ...

Prelude...

Rene Marchard regarded himself as the king of Palaku.

His pretension was no mere fantasy, for, in all but actual title, he was truly the inheritor of the ancient native rulers of the remote South Pacific island. His grandfather and father before him had served as the administrator for the french colonial government in far off Tahiti and the island was too unimportant to even warrant a military garrison. War among the tribal clans on the island had severely reduced the native population by the time the french came and european diseases quickly eliminated the few Palakans surviving the fratricidal strife. New inhabitants were brought from other islands to work the cane fields and banana plantations introduced to give the island an economic base.

Palaku was one of the more beautiful places on earth but also one of the most isolated. Only Pitcairn Island and Bermuda were inhabited sites further away from any other. Towering, jungle-girt cliffs rose high behind reef-sheltered inlets with sugary-sand beaches and palm groves. Inland lay the river valleys and flatlands for the cane fields and rolling foothills for the banana groves. There was but one real town, the processing center for the sugar production and shipping port.

Though the island was poor enough, the Marchand family, owners of the fields and plantations, grew wealthy over the years as they ruled their volcanic rock like feudal lords. They made the laws and so long as they caused no headaches for them, the french authorities were perfectly happy with the arrangement. A private army of guards employed by the liege ensured against any challange to Marchand authority from the mostly illiterate native workers laboring to keep the family coffers full.

The french might have been less pleased with their administrator if they had known of his newest source of clandestine income. A Japanese consortium rented the far west side of the island with their "plantation" heavily guarded and fenced off. Their research activities in genetic manipulation were banned in the home islands and elsewhere in the world, but Marchand turned a blind eye to their experimentations in return for "rent" payments that could have leased a big chunk of New York City.

Marchand raised his glass and toasted his guests, a mix of his senior aides and Japanese businessmen inspecting their investment on the island. They had enjoyed a spendid feast in the candle-lit dining hall of the mansion capping a promentory over the port. The estate lay on the reputed site of the ancient royal compound of the Palakan kings and reserved a tract of cliffs, jungle, field and coastline of some six square miles for the exclusive use of the administrator.

The salute was returned by Iki Atatojo on behalf of his comrades.

Only the most trusted echelons of the companies participating in the Palakan research station were even aware of its existence. Each company was allotted one representative on the five man supervision team that visited the site on a regular basis from Tokyo and noone else was permitted to even travel to the island. Each company had chosen its most fanatic, ambitious young executive for the team and these were hard, tough men seated around the dining table.

Such men enjoyed rough, violent sport for entertainment and Marchand always provided a full measure of it for them on their visits. They wondered what outrageous thrills he had in store for them tonight as they enjoyed their after-dinner cordials and cigars. Later they'd settle in for the all-night poker games and orgies with the young men and women provided to sate their sexual appetites.

At his bidding, they followed him into the vast expanse of the walled garden and found themselves surrounding a huge plexi-glass tank filled with water. There were two superbly muscled young westerners occupying the tank and nothing about their handsome bodies was left to the imagination. They were both naked and securely chained by their wrists to stout bolts in the bottom of the tank. Each was fitted with an oxygen tube running into a clear plastic breathing mask covering the bottom half of his face. Between them, but too far for either to reach, was a small iron stand upon which lay a single broad-bladed knife.

With rising anticipation, almost licking their lips, the formal clad audience crowded closer to the glass walls for a better view of the hunky pair of young studs. Both were big-hung between their muscular thighs. Philippe wore his blond hair in a thick, feathery crew-cut while Jean's light brown locks were longer, a silky mane that floated around his handsome face, waving slowly in the water with each slight movement of his head.

As cigars and liquors were dispensed by sevants, Marchand explained the game.

That brought a little ripple of chuckles. Very little of what went on on Palaku was ever reported to authorities in Paris or Tokyo. Otherwise there would be real hell to pay.

Now that got the attention of the guests!

It was so utterly decadent! Having life and death power over the young hunks in the tank was a power trip more intoxicating and heady than anything the group had experienced in a long time. The delight was clear on the beaming faces of every man there. One half-hopefully asked if it would be permissable to vote that both be put to death.

Marchand chuckled.

The vote was taken and Marchand retrieved the ballots and tallied them.

He frowned,

He turned to one of his loyal aides who was waiting with a small hand held radio transmitter.

The deed was done and every eye turned to the tank to see which of the young men was freed. There was a gasp of excitement as the irons around Philippe's wrists suddenly popped open and dropped away.

The relief on the crew-cut commando's face was palpable just as was the terror in the features of the remaining prisoner as Philippe quickly took possession of the knife. The condemned man thrashed about as wildly as his fetters allowed and the audience watched in rapt fascination to see how the killing would take place. Even armed, Philippe needed to be careful in his approach to his panicked victim. The victor used his head. Why engage in a risky battle even with Jean restrained? He simply used the knife to cut his opponent's air hose.

He then took a leisurely rise to the top of the tank to exit and receive his prize while nature took its course down below as Jean held his breath as long as he could before he began sucking in water and drowning.

He had magnificent lungs and it took nearly six minutes from the cutting of his air line before he was finally floating still and limp, eyes wide and glassy, the last vestige of air bubbles having long since exited his gaping mouth.

Marchand was pleased. He had expected a bloody but rather swift killing. Instead the more prolonged drama of the drowning had provided exquisite entertainment for a prolonged period. Drowning was such a dreadful form of execution that it made for splendid sport.

Marchand sipped from his cognac and smiled. That smile was as cold as the eyes of a cobra rising up to strike its prey.

He paused to take another sip of his drink.

There were gasps of surprise and delight all around.

And everyone agreed it was to be a remarkable spectacle and gave Marchand the enthusiastic acclaim that the French egotist so enjoyed.

the Race....

Rob eyed the other men as he went through warm-up exercises to condition his muscles for the harsh run about to be undertaken. Benji, the Dutch marathoner, and Fredrik, the Boer miler, looked to be his primary competition. The American ex-seal was himself a distance runner of some repute.

He was, however, impressed with the others as a group. All were remarkably sturdy, generally handsome young men, ranging in age from his own twenty-two down to the eighteen year old "baby" in the group, dark-haired Peter, the Ozzie surfer. He really hated seeing such a boy involved in this, though the kid looked tough and game enough. It was just so young to die a violent death and he disliked the thought of killing him if it came to that.

Still, two million was two million. You do what you must and the boy, like all of them, was here taking his risks voluntarily in the hope of the big score.

He wondered if any of the others were also gay. No way to tell and they had all stayed aloof and apart since arriving on the island. You don't want to form attachments or friendly relationships with guys you plan to kill. Best to view them just as blood enemies...so much expendable meat for the slaughter.

Not that Rob minded killing. It excited him deeply and he had enjoyed those occasions as a seal when it had been necessary to use gun, knife or garrotte on another strong young man. He cast his eyes around and decided that, apart maybe from the surfer boy, there wasn't a guy there whom he would dislike snuffing...in fact, it would be the sweetest of thrills to carry out the executions if he won. Killing was somehow such a really distinctly male thing to do...the ultimate, heady act of complete dominance.

And he fully intended to win. Self-confidence had always been his trademark and he had not come to the remote island with any thought of dying there.

He had already spotted an advantage he had. Just to toughen himself, he had long done his running barefooted and his soles were like steel-corded rubber. He doubted the feet of many of the others were conditioned like that and the race was to be run clad only in gym trunks.

Marchand and his blood-lusting guests assembled for a luncheon in the shade of a lanai on the brink of the cliff down which snaked the torturous trail to the beach below. As they enjoyed the creations of the frenchman's gourmet chef they would have the perfect vantage point to watch the progress of the eight men as they ran for their very lives.

At a signal from Marchand, the octad was off and tearing down the two mile long trail. At its end they had another mile along the beach to touch a huge boulder before starting the tougher return run. Some put on full effort initially to gain an early lead while others paced themselves on the downward slope figuring that greater reserves of energy on the uphill leg would enable them to overtake flagging opponents. It didn't matter who led at a given point; all that counted was being first over the line at the end.

Rob felt he could keep up a solid pace for the entire six mile course and that his hardened feet would enable him to open a particularly commanding lead. Thus he was one of those who put out a full effort from the starting signal. Surprisingly, right there with him was the Ozzie boy who proved deceptively swift and his feet were as conditioned as Rob's from years of being hardened on hot beach sand. They fairly quickly were several switchbacks ahead of the rest of the pack, some of whom were already favoring their sore feet.

Peter actually managed to take a slight lead over Rob halfway down the cliff , but then made a youthful blunder. Anxious to see how far ahead he was, he cast a swift backwards glance, broke his stride and suddenly slid violently on gravel at the base of the current switchback. He desperately fought to regain his balance as he teetered on the edge but lost the battle. His feet shot out from under him and he started the fatal plunge even as a powerful arm lashed out around his waist and jerked him back.

Rob and Peter slammed backwards against the safety of the stone face of the cliff backing the narrow trail, the boy's terror clear in his face and heaving, flexing muscles.

Rob hardly even realized he was still tightly gripping the hot, sweaty young body of the handsome, muscular surfer. It actually felt pretty nice. He released him and the moment Peter took a step, he grimaced.

Rob felt for the kid, but after just a moment's hesitation, did take off again at full speed just as the first of the trailing pack was almost upon them.

By the beach, he was again well in the lead and the run along the sand was a toot. He was hardly winded after touching the boulder marking the half-way point and retracing the oceanside route to the base of the cliff trail.

Only the South African and the Dutchman were still serious contenders at overtaking him. Poor Peter was far in the rear though gamely doing the best he could, determined to at least finish the course out of some meaningless sense of self-pride. He was clearly toast with just hours, at most, left before he would be executed by the winner.

The Dutchman lost his wind in the last round of the brutal switchbacks, but the young Boer was hot on Rob's heels as they reached the clifftop. Rob's lungs felt like they were on fire as he drew up every ounce of reserve enegy and endurance he could muster for the last fifty yard dash to the finish line. His nearly spent body rose to the need and he surged forward.

He crossed the line with barely ten paces separating him from Fredrik.

He had won! He virtually collapsed from the exhaustion, hardly able to catch his gasping breath, but inwardly his spirit was screaming in victory! He had fucking won!

Now, to the victor went the spoils.

The killing commenced almost immediately, starting with the tall, brawny, twenty-one year old bronze-haired Boer, Fredrik. The runner-up, who had come so tantalizingly close to a win, was bound in a kneeling stance, his shoulders roped to the cross-bar of a stout bamboo frame, rather like a small hitching post from an old western.

The prisoner was naked for his killing and Rob too had been stripped of his trunks to enhance the erotic nature of the barbaric spectacle for the onlookers. The victory bloodshed to come was hotly arousing to the American as demonstrated by his cock's steely hardness much to the delight of Marchand and his guests.

The Japanese, ever fond of beheadings, edged in close to watch in leering anticipation as Rob was handed a vicious-looking polynesian hand-ax. A flat hemisphere of volcanic flint was lodged securely in a heavy wooden handle. The curving business edge of the flint, honed to razor sharpness, glinted in the sunlight as Rob stood behind the hapless South African hunk taking practice swings to measure the balance and heft of the weapon. Finally ready, he steeled himself and cocked back his arm, taking careful aim.

To his credit, the condemned also-ran did not cry out in terror or beg for his life. He held perfectly still and even titled his head to fully expose the vertibrae in the back of his neck. Rob's arm came surging forward as he put his full strength into the stroke. Fredrik's head came cleanly off in a thick spurt of blood that partially sprayed back and splattered on Rob's skin.

On impulse he reached down and picked up the severed head by the hair to raise it high in a victory display for Marchand and the Japanese.

The executions were carried out in the order of finish by the runners. Thus the second to be presented to Rob was Benji, the twenty-two year old Dutch marathoner, a sailor with long, sandy hair. He was dangled by his wrists from a wooden gibbet with a pivotal arm that was swung out to suspend him over the edge of the two thousand foot sheer cliff. A field of volcanic boulders waited below like the teeth of a great dragon.

Armed with a machete, Rob lost little time in ending this second little drama. With a hard swipe, his body pivoting with the stroke, he slashed the rope and sent Benji hurtling downward to his death.

The wailing, undulating scream of the Dutch athlete echoed back up until he slammed into the rocks and was crushed to a bloody pulp, every bone in his body shattered. Henri Guillard, the beautifully buff twenty year old French-Canadian ski-boarder, sported a short-cropped mop of jet-black curls.

He lay on the ground with his shoulders bound to stakes, a wooden bar tied between his knees to keep his powerful thighs widely parted. Above his belly by a few feet, a massive round stone dangled from a stout rope, swaying slightly like a pendulum.

The Canuk jock stared silently up in rising horror as Rob used a small dagger to start parting the line holding the four hundred pound boulder. Fredrik had died virtually instantly as he was decapitated. Benji's fall had lasted just seconds. Henri's death, however, was not to be so swiftly merciful.

After the rock dropped and crushed his midsection like an ant on a sidewalk, he writhed and screamed in utter agony for several long minutes of excruciating suffering. Finally his system gave out and he lapsed into shock and lay still.

After the first three killings, a sort of intermission was conducted for Marchand's delighted guests to quench their thirst and compare excited notes on the sport so far. They fawned over Rob as fans the world over show admiration for their sporting heros.They eagerly congratulated him on his splendid run and the excellent, unhesitant manner in which he was carrying out the delicious killings of his former opponents. Some posed with the victor for pictures in front of Fredrik's corpse with Rob hefting the Boer's head up in one hand as a grisly trophy. Others posed with him standing on Henri's rock while they lifted up the dead Canadian's arms and legs to display him like a trophy buck.

Marchand made a great play of awarding Rob with the passbook for the Swiss account in which the first three million of his earnings had just been electronically deposited.

And the yank next proceded to dispose of Philippe, the winner of the little tank contest of the evening before. His luck had run out and the salivating Japanese were particularly eager to see the handsome crew-cut blond commando put to death. They were not disappointed at the graphic, violent manner in which Rob was assigned to kill this French stud.

Once again, all that was involved was the cutting of a rope.

A wooden bar across the small of his back was bound tightly to Philippe's arms at the elbows to secure his upper limbs. He was then made to stand on two wooden stumps and his big feet nailed down, producing loud gutteral cries and a grimace on the handsome gallic face. In that stance, he was perfectly positioned as a target for a punji-stake board a few feet to his front.

The curving surface of the board bristled with foot-long, needled bamboo spikes. It was mounted on a springy sapling drawn back in a taut, curving arch by a rope secured to a nearby tree.

When Rob cut the rope, the device catapaulted forward with tremendous force and slammed into Philippe's belly and crotch with a loud wet smacking noise. Blood splatters flew all around as more than forty bamboo spikes were hammered fully home into the stud's guts, his genitals chewed instantly into hamburger.

His demented shriek rent the air and every muscle in the hard body contracted in violent flexing agony, but he didn't die quickly. There was a lot of will to live in such a splendid young buck and he stayed fully concious for minute after minute to suffer the pangs of hell, screaming out his lungs while the delighted Japanese whooped and giggled in glee at the sight.

The next part of the show was special for Rob. Before the race, each of the contestants had been asked to describe how he would most enjoy conducting a killing. Now they all trooped down to a small sandy inlet on the beach where Rob's fantasy was to be acted out with Viktor Ordentsov, the wavy-haired Russian wrestler.

There was irony on hand that only Rob recognized. He had gotten the idea for the killing of the nineteen year old Slav fox from an incident in World War II on Guadalcanal. A squad of captured American marines were made to dig holes in the beach at low-tide and then buried in them up to their waists. The incoming tide then disposed of them in a slow, torturous drowning execution while the Japanese soldiers took bets on which of the pow's would take the longest to die. All these modern Japanese spectators knew was that they really enjoyed watching young Viktor excavate a hip-deep hole in the heavy, wet sand well out beyond the high water mark on the beach.

There was no love lost for their old Russian enemies and the arrogant Asian executives laughed at the boy and made taunting jibes when Rob shoved him into the little pit and personally filled it in around him. Viktor's wrists were manacled to a chain looped around his neck to hamper any attempt on his part to dig himself out. As it turned out, Marchand added his own touch to the scene, giving the boy a more ugent task than digging to occupy his time as he awaited his fatal saltwater bath.

While the tide slowly began to ebb back in, the frenchman had his guards bring several huge land crabs they had captured and release them around Viktor. The vicious predatory crustaceans, each the size of a dinner plate, were opportunistic scavangers who now sensed easy prey. They began to dart in and nip off little pinches of flesh from the Russian youth's belly and back, slowing eating him alive as he screamed and fought with them as best he could.

....

The voracious crabs were finally driven off by the sea as it began to swirl over and around their victim. Over and over, Viktor was engulfed to emerge choking from the receding deluge, only to be covered again by the next wave, each becoming a little deeper and lasting longer than the last.

Inexorably but with cruelly tormenting slowness the sea took the offering sacrified to it. The crabs retreated beyond the waterline and patiently stood by. They somehow knew that the water would eventually draw back and they could continue their feast, this time without the irritating interruptions caused by the boy's snarling, thrashing resistence to being eaten.

Norwegian Lars Nordhallen, another nineteen year old bull with a trim, wiry swimmer's build, may have died more swiftly than had Viktor, but his death was a particularly horrible one. The executions of the young men before Viktor were all reenactments of killing processes practiced on various islands throughout the Pacific. Beheading, flinging from a cliff, crushing and punji impalement of the gut came from Samoa, Hawaii, Fiji and New Zealand respectively. Lars, however, was subjected to Marchand's own wicked imagination.

The somewhat homely Viking pup with his feathery blond crewcut was suspended in the air by ropes on his knees and shoulders, arms bound behind his back. His legs were drawn obscenely apart to fully display both his big-hung crotch and his tight little asshole.

The genitals were dealt with first. Marchand offered Rob a knife with its blade heated red-hot.

Rob laughed as he accepted the glowing knife and stepped between the Norwegian jock's splayed thighs.

Fuck, he thought, this is sweet! Never thought I'd get to actually castrate another dude! It's a wet dream come true!

A moment later, Lars' demented shriek cut the air as his big man parts were slowly shorn from him, smoke rising from the wound as it was cautarized even as it was inflicted. Rob studied the severed organs briefly and then handed them to the Japanese to pass around and admire.

A frame-mounted hand-crank drill press was positioned between the emasculated norseman's legs and the sharp point of the thick steel bit carefully threaded into the little pucker of his sphincter. Realizing what was about to be done to him, the teen overcame the dreadful, searing agony of his castration and began to plead for Rob to spare him this further torment.

A little disgusted at the stupid show of weakness, Rob ignored his pleas and began to crank the handle of the drill. The dangling kid's whining plaint turned into fresh screams as the grooved bit started its slow rotating journey up inside his gut.

With studied slow cruelty, Rob reamed out the teen's innards grinding them to mush, until shock and internal damage finally prevailed. Rob estimated that the tip of the bit was all the way up into his victim's lungs by the time the ordeal was over. Pretty impressive, he thought. The young eunuch had lasted a really long time under the mind-bending torture.

It seemed that the worse the performance in the race, the more prolonged and agonizing the death dealt out to the losers. It was finally time to snuff the Ozzie surfer who had come in a distant last with his injured knee and he was not to die at all swiftly. Rob contemplated the cute youngster as he dangled by his wrists from another pivoting bar on a wooden gibbet. This one, however, would not project the teener over a cliff. It would swing him over a waiting bed of simmering coals.

Peter was to be slowly roasted to death, about as hideous and protracted a way to go as Rob could imagine.

The game kid looked down at Rob and shrugged.

And Rob swung the wooden arm out to suspend the surfer directly over the hot coals. The heat at once communicated itself to the boy who gasped and cringed, writhing around as he began to be mildly scorched on his naked feet and legs.


 

Fuck this, Rob decided. Deep inside he had known all along what he would do at this moment. He reached up and pulled the boy back from over the coals.

The disappointed Japs murmured among them­selves in disapproval, but March­and just shrugged.

Peter shook his head in dis­be­lief,

What the fuck, Rob smiled to himself as they cut the boy down and he took him in his arms. Six million dollars is a nice tidy prize for a six mile run and I bet Peter turns out to be a real tiger between the sheets. I'm so fucking heated up from the thrill of all the killings that I need to screw someone just awfully bad right now anyway. Plus I kinda like the funny way the Ozzies talk. Plus I always did want to learn to surf!

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