Across the Junn-Junn Wastes ...by
by Van ©2011


To see the actresses the author would cast in a Junn-Junn Wastes movie,
follow the link below, and use your browser's "Back" feature to return.



The objects the brunette amazons were trundling into the room were padded wooden frameworks on spoked wheels.  One held a bound, gagged, blindfolded. and naked woman and the other a similarly restrained and exposed man.  Both looked to be in their early twenties, about George's age, but Bonnie couldn't be absolutely sure as their features were almost entirely covered.  Their gags were similar if not identical to Bonnie's own—tight leather muzzles covering their stuffed and bulging mouths and cupping their chins.  Their blindfolds were of similar leather and incorporated padded earmuffs.  Both captives were athletic and fit.  Of that Bonnie could be certain, and their toned, tanned bodies glistened as if they'd been slathered with oil.

The female was on her back with her arms raised and legs splayed with knees bent.  Leather cuffs and straps at her wrists, ankles, upper arms, waist, and thighs pinned her in place.  Needless to say, her private parts were on full display in a most indecent manner.

The male was held upright in his frame by similar straps, but in a different pose.  His arms were raised and legs extended and he was pressed against the padding in a back-arching stretch.  This meant his genitalia were also quite prominently exposed, of course.

The amazons heaved and strained, the frames' wheels slid onto guide-rails, and gears meshed.  Bonnie realized the frameworks were attachments to the machine, male and female modules, if you will.  She watched as the amazons lifted swing-arms attached to the main machine, slid couplings through matching fittings on the frames, and secured them with heavy cotter pins.  It was now quite clear why the green loin-clothed she-giants were in such good shape: they needed to be.  Their muscles strained as they heaved and held the various components and secured the frames.

The overall purpose of the machine was now quite clear.  Bonnie-the-engineer could grasp its entire operation in full detail.  As outrageous and scandalous as it might be—it was an intercourse facilitation device!  Truth be told, she'd realized this almost from the start, but the civilized Luropean in her—rebellious and unconventional as Bonnie Plantuckett might be—had dared hope she was mistaken.

But why?
Bonnie wondered.  Why not just... do what comes naturally?  Why the machine?

"Machine make all equal," the blonde explained, as if reading Bonnie's mind.  "Some chosen to mate no want be touched by man.  Some willing.  Some like jûb-jûb with men.  Old Women decide treat all same.  No muss, no fuss.  Machine make all equal."

Bonnie was unconvinced.  No muss, no fuss?  It seems like a lot of muss and fuss, to me—Ahh!  The blonde had reached between Bonnie's thighs with her right hand and was sliding the palm against her labia.  "Mrrrf!"  Box-tied with rope and strapped to the padded post, there was nothing Bonnie could do but squirm.

"Posts added so breeder-female's jûb-jûb jolly friend can take part," the blonde purred.  "Blindfolds and ear plugs for all, so they not know who father."  She continued her stimulatory massage of Bonnie's private parts.  "No blindfold for you, 'cause Old Women say you watch."

Meanwhile, one of the brunette she-giants was stroking the helpless male's member, sliding her hand along the glistening, oiled shaft until it was fully erect.  The other handler gently stroked the females flushed and glistening labia, apparently confirming her readiness, then pulled a chain.  There was a pause of a few seconds, then the main drive shaft began to turn.  The manipulation of the male's penis continued.  A lever was thrown and gears turned, drive belts snapped, chain drives rattled, and the entire machine came to life.

Slowly, the two "breeders" were drawn together.  Careful adjustments were made, both to the participants' anatomies and to various parts of the machine, setting the range of motion from full penetration to near withdrawal.  Then, with a hand on what was unmistakably a throttle control, the repetitive process, the... uh, pumping action began.  Gradually, over the course of minutes, the pace was increased.

The outrageous nature of the spectacle aside, Bonnie had to admit the sight of the two youthful, healthy bodies straining against their bonds as the machine pressed them together, eased them apart, then pressed them together, again, was... stimulating.  Of course, the massage of Bonnie's own private parts by the blond she-giant might have been a contributing factor.

"This one good stud," the blonde said, continuing her teasing strokes.  "Some spurt right away first time."  Her palm was keeping pace with the machine, and Bonnie couldn't help but thrust herself against the blonde's hand, to the extent the straps binding her against the padding allowed.  "We always try make she-breeder and jûb-jûb jolly friend cum together," the blonde continued.  Then, she withdrew her hand.  "But you just Luroper-girl, so who cares?"

Bonnie glared at the blonde and panted through her gag as the brunette handlers laughed.  She knew she should be relieved that she hadn't been forced to the point of... uh, relief, but the blonde was treating her with disrespect, and she didn't like it.

All eyes were on the mechanically coupled couple.  "Very soon," the blonde said.  Both captives of the machine were shining with sweat and oil and straining against their bonds.

"Very soon," one of the brunettes agreed, and the other nodded.

"There they go," the blonde sighed.  The young couple were convulsing in their bonds.  "They cum together.  That good luck.  Make strong baby."

The brunettes waited until the breeders had collapsed in their bonds.  Their bodies were limp against the straps as the machine continued to cycle.  Then, the blonde eased back on the throttle, slowing the pace.  One of the brunettes pulled a lever, and the breeding pair were separated.  The amazon pulled another lever and most of the machine ground to a halt.  The drive shaft and some of the gears continued to turn, but the main machine was idle.

"Good girl," a brunette cooed as she stroked the young woman's tummy and gently squeezed her left breast .  She threw a lever and the frame rocked back until the woman's hips were elevated several degrees.  The handler then gently inspected her privates.  "Strong girl."  She then wet a rag in a basin of water and gently cleaned the woman's thighs and labia.

"We let couple rest and give seed chance to take," the blonde explained, obviously for Bonnie's benefit.  "Then, do again, six more times before sunset."

"Good boy," the other brunette was saying as she cleaned the young man's genitalia and thighs with another rag and basin.  She then slid a leather sheath over his penis and strapped it to conveniently placed rings on either side of the frame.  It held the now flaccid member in a jutting, upright position.  Why, Bonnie had no idea.  It must be ritual, she decided.

What happened next was clearly ritual.  A green cloth was draped across the woman's stomach and between her thighs.  Embroidered on its surface with gold thread was the form of a naked, sleeping baby.  The brunettes smiled, leaned close, and each kissed one of the young woman's nipples.  They then turned and left the room.

The blonde remained, smiling at Bonnie.  "They rest," she announced.  "You rest, too.  No sleep for you while machine working.  Old Women say you watch, so you watch."  She reached out and gave Bonnie's breasts a gentle squeeze, then seized her nipples with her thumbs and forefingers and gave them a not-so-gentle tug.  "We make sure you watch."  With that, she turned and followed her fellow amazons out the door.

Bonnie glared after her, then sighed as the door closed with a solid thud.  The breeders remained as they were, of course, their skins still shining with sweat and oil.  Slowly, their breathing returned to normal.

The members of the Royal Geographical Society will never believe this, Bonnie mused.  Of course, she'd have to put what she was learning of Sand Amazon breeding habits in a confidential, "Members Only" codicil of her main report.  This could never be discussed in a public lecture.

Bonnie closed her eyes and tried to relax.  George will never believe this, either... assuming she isn't strapped to a post in the next room, watching another couple ride another machine.  Bonnie certainly hoped that wasn't the case.  George would have a fit.  Then she'd faint dead away.

Across the Junn-Junn Wastes

George was in the Old Women's Conference Room (or whatever they actually called it) sitting in the same chair she'd climbed up on the previous evening.  Queen Bondara was to her left and Mother Bindra to her right.  A dozen more Old Women were also present.  George was still nude, but for the iron fetters hobbling her ankles.  The Queen was in her usual costume of tasseled and beaded loincloth and top.  The Mothers were all dressed in simple linen shifts.  Like Bindra, they were all elderly, with gray or white hair.  Also like Bindra, they were all exceptionally fit for advanced age.

George and the Old Women had been talking for hours, with the Queen mostly listening.

George stared at the diagram of the "Breeding Machine" before her.  "Remarkable," she whispered under her breath.  A blush colored her cheeks, and she was very much afraid her cheeks might become permanently red if such revelations as the Sand Amazon practice of bound, gagged, and machine mediated procreation continued.

"In the past," Bindra explained, "the stud-male was bound to a simple framework, a 'pleasure rack' it was called.  The breeding female was assisted by her friends, bound, if necessary."

Bondara smiled at George.  "Pleasure racks still used.  I show you, later."

Now, George's cheeks felt like they might burst into flame.  "T-that's quite all right, Your Majesty, but thank you for the kind offer."

Bondara continued her somewhat predatory smile.

"Let's see, now," Bindra continued.  She was also smiling, but not in the same way, of course.  "We've discussed our mining and forge technologies and our irrigation system.  And thank you for your suggestions on improving our pump designs, by the way."

"You're most welcome, Mother Bindra," George responded, doing her best to ignore the Queen's continuing, leering gaze.

"For obvious reasons," Bindra continued, "the extent and capability of our military defenses will not be discussed.  Suffice it to say, we are prepared for any attack.  Is there anything you would like to discuss?"

"Yes, Mother Bindra," George answered.  "What can you tell me about the 'dragons' that attack our large airships whenever they attempt to cross the Junn-Junn?"

"Dragons?" Bondara asked dryly.

"I believe she is referring to the sky-god honkers," Bindra said.  "The best opinion of our naturalists is that 'dragons' are a genus endemic to the Junn-Junn of the suborder Pterodactyloidea, probably of the superfamily Ctenochasmatoidea."

"Possibly," one of the Old Women across the table muttered.

"Probably," another stated.

"The thing is, my dear," Bindra said, "our library is perpetually out of date, so it is difficult to remain abreast of current scientific consensus.  For example, I believe our copy of Huxley's A Taxonomy of Theropoda is—"  She glanced across the table.  "Third edition?"

One of the Old Women nodded.  "I believe fifth edition about to be published in London."

"Sneaking honker books past Iberian and Tyrrenian border patrols not high priority," Bondara stated, and the assembly chuckled, even the presumed naturalists who had disagreed about the dragons' classification.

"In any case," Bindra said, "what we call the sky-gods are fiercely territorial.  Why the very sight of a large airship triggers a hostile group frenzy is... problematic."

"May be shape," one of the Old Women posited.  "May be colors, scent, or noise.  Hard to test hypotheses."

"Just so," Bindra agreed.  "However, the Sand Amazon Nation probably couldn't exist without the protection of the sky-gods."

"Sand Amazons destroy any army sent into Junn-Junn," Bondara said.  "But army supported by airships with bombs?"

"The Grand Alliance would never bomb civilians," George huffed.  She believed this with her very soul.

Bondara smiled.  "There are no Sand Amazon 'civilians'."

"The Grand Alliance has no quarrel with the Sand Amazons," George countered.  "Good relations between our peoples would be mutually beneficial ."

"Which brings me to a proposal," Bindra said with a broad smile.  "In the material we've borrowed from your hoveryacht's wardroom were several newspapers, all of which contain positive, speculative articles about Luropean-Gondwanese trade.  I assure you the Sand Amazons will never allow such traffic to pass unmolested."  George's face fell.  "However," Bindra continued, "hover-freighters of a hypothetical Luropean—Sand Amazon—Gondwanese Trading Company would be most welcome."

George blinked in surprise, then, her smile returned.  "You... you want to be trading partners!"

Bondara nodded.  "Refueling, watering, and repair stations.  Amazons in charge in Junn-Junn."

George's mind was racing.  "I can't speak for my government, but this seems like an excellent proposal."

"Baby sky-gods sometimes attack amazons on ground," Bondara continued.  "That why we hide settlements.  We show you best routes to avoid hatcheries."

"Baby sky-gods?" George asked.

"Something like twice the size of your hoveryacht," Bindra explained.

George's eyes widened.  "I see."  She looked from the Queen to Mother Bindra.  "I apologize for bringing this up, again, but could I please see my partner, Bonnie?  She should take part in this discussion."

Bondara shook her head.  "SubQueen say your Bonnie warrior.  Sand Amazons not insult warrior by not testing her."

Bindra patted George's hand.  "You'll see her tonight, my dear."

"T-testing?" George asked.

Just then, the door opened and a young amazon about George's age entered.  She was carrying a chamois bundle tied with leather thongs.

"Excellent," Bindra smiled, and beckoned for the amazon to approach.

The amazon handed the bundle to Bindra, bowed to the Queen—who smiled and nodded in acknowledgment—then made her exit, easing the door closed behind her.

Bindra untied the bundle, spread back its folds, and arranged the contents for George's inspection.  They were a loincloth and bra-top, both of soft linen bleached a bone-white color, as well as a narrow, beaded belt of pale chamois.  The front and back of the loincloth were fringed with beaded tassels of white feathers and glass beads in different shades of blue, turquoise, and green.  Embroidered on the loincloth was the stylized image of a white fish, its fins, gills and scales traced with white thread and clear seed beads.  Its eyes, however, were ruby-red beads the size of the fringe beads.  The top was similarly decorated, with a fish on each breast cup.

"Oh my," George whispered under her breath.

"Art Guild do good job," Bondara stated.  "Quick job.  Very pretty."

"I understand they took the task as something of a challenge," Bindra chuckled.

"Still say no need for top," Bondara huffed.  "Little Trout boo-boobies too small.  Too pretty to hide."

"Your Majesty!" George gasped, blushing (yet again) and covering her breasts with her hands.  She turned to Bindra.  "T-this is for me?"

Bindra beamed.  "Yes, my dear.  Her Majesty insisted on the motif.  The result is more than adequate, don't you think?"

George gazed at the loincloth and top.  "They're beautiful," she gushed, then directed a shy smile at Bondara.  "Thank you."

It's possible a blush had touched the Royal cheeks, as well, but it may have just been the lighting.  "Bad politics for possible guest to be naked like captive," she muttered.

"Stand, my dear," Bindra said, rising from her chair.  "I'll assist you."

George stood.  "Please don't bother, Mother Bindra.  I can dress myself—Oh!"

Bondara had stood, as well, grabbed George's wrists and lifted them above her head, then turned her to face Bindra.  "Hold still, Little Trout.  No wiggle."

There was nothing for it.  George sighed and willed herself to stop blushing (with no success).

Bindra buckled the belt around George's waist, then slid the loincloth through the back of the belt, snugged the cloth between her legs, then passed it under the front and let it drape.  A few politely intimate adjustments followed, then Bindra smiled.  "Perfect."

Bondara placed George's hands atop her head, palms down.  "No move," she ordered, then reached for the top.

Fingers interlaced, George followed Her Majesty's orders as the bra cups pressed against her breasts.  Finally!  The costume might be scandalously minimal, but it was clothing... and was very pretty, as the Queen had said.

The top was held in place by a continuous, narrow, ribbon-like thong of pale chamois that yoked George's shoulders, crossed between and under her breasts, then stretched to either side.  Bondara secured it behind her pale back with a generous bow.  The tassels and beads at the ends of the thong brushed against George's spine.  The cups were something of a close fit, and the thong lifted and provided her modest breasts with a little support.  The red beads of the decorative fishes' eyes pressed against her nipples.

"Charming," Bindra sighed, and the assembled Old Women nodded and made similar affirmative remarks.

Bondara spun George around, placing her right hand atop George's hands and head to maintain her pose.  "The top does make Little Trout boo-boobies look bigger."

"Your Majesty," George complained, lowering her eyes.  Her gaze fell on her bare feet and fettered ankles.  She lifted her chin and forced what she hoped was a cajoling smile.  "Are my bonds to be removed?  I promise not to attempt to escape."

Bondara shook her head.  "After testing.  Boots probably not ready, yet."

George swallowed, nervously.  "And what, exactly, is the nature of this 'testing', if I might be so bold as to ask?"

Bondara smiled.  "Hunter's patience, Little Trout.  You have good seat, next to Queen."

Across the Junn-Junn Wastes

Bonnie spent the entire day naked, bound, gagged, and strapped to the padded post, a mute, helpless witness to the operation of the machine.  As promised by the blonde she-giant, there were a total of seven bouts of mechanically mediated intercourse.  Bonnie was greatly impressed by the stamina of the youthful "stud" and his amazon partner.  However bizarre the circumstances of their union, she wished them well.  Finally, the couple and their modules were decoupled from the machine and rolled out the door by the two brunettes.

The blonde dealt with Bonnie.  She used a hank of rope to bind her ankles together, then released all the leather straps, releasing Bonnie from the post.  Still box-tied, muzzle-gagged, and now ankle-tied, Bonnie was lifted onto the blonde's shoulder and carried away.  Feet to the front, head to the rear, and butt in the air, Bonnie could only see where they'd been, not where they were going.  In any case, there wasn't much to see other than the sandy floor and the stone walls, all lit by periodic torches or vertical light tunnels.  They passed the occasional side passage or timber portal, but for the most part it was yard upon bouncing, uncomfortable yard of tunnel.

Finally, the blonde stopped before a door of heavy timber and eased Bonnie off her shoulder.

Bonnie leaned against the wall, bracing herself with her box-tied arms and butt, and watched as the blonde slid back an iron bolt and opened the door.  Then, it was back on the blonde's shoulder and into the room beyond—which was a large dungeon cell.

There was no other way to describe it.  The walls and ceiling were rough, natural stone.  The only light was from an oil lamp just inside the door, suspended from the ceiling by an iron chain.  The floor was sand, but Bonnie was under no delusion that she would be able to burrow under the door and escape what she surmised would soon be her prison, even before the blonde lifted an iron collar from the straw piled against the far wall and locked it around her throat.  The collar and its attached chain were heavy, but not punishingly so.  Bonnie followed the chain with her eyes to a thick staple embedded in the wall.  She estimated the length of the chain to be such that she wouldn't be able to get closer than five feet to the door.

The blonde spun Bonnie around and began untying the box-tie.  Bonnie considered this more than a fair trade for the collar and chain, as she'd been bound since her capture, immediately after the "incident of the giggling T. rex."  That was assuming, of course, that she wasn't about to be stringently bound in some other fashion.  She turned her head and noticed a large tray off to the side, resting on the sand and straw.  It was covered with a cloth, but underneath were the shapes of a large jug and several bowls.

The blonde stopped her efforts when Bonnie was only about half-untied, then turned and walked to the door.  "Eat, drink, rest," she ordered as she pulled the door closed.

Bonnie listened to the bolt ramming home, then began squirming out of the remaining ropes.  The blonde hadn't made it easy, but she managed to grope her way to the last of the hitches and knots in a little more than a minute.  She then sat in the straw and untied her ankles.  The muzzle and its underlying elements were next.  She unbuckled the main strap and removed the hateful device, as well as the pad of cloth, the cleaving gag-strap, and the wad filling her mouth.

A full-body, glorious stretch followed—"Eyaaaaah!"—with Bonnie pointing her toes, extending her arms and fingers, and leaning back on her naked rump in the straw.  She held this pose for several seconds... her stomach growled, and she glanced at the tray.  But first, another bodily requirement asserted itself and she dragged her chain in the opposite direction to what was obviously a ceramic chamberpot with a close-fitting lid.  She squatted over the pot and emptied her bladder, then restored the lid and returned to the tray.

Under the cloth were two pitchers, as well as several covered bowls.  The larger of the pitchers contained water with a few floating slices of some sort of fruit, possibly citrus in nature.  The smaller pitcher contained dark, syrupy, concentrated wine.  Bonnie lifted the lids of the bowls and found sliced vegetables and beans, some cooked in thick, savory mixtures, and some sliced raw and arranged with small pots of yogurt or soft cheese.  There were also roasted meats in the form of sliced ribs, small wings and breasts (possibly fowl or some variety of small dinosaur) in various sauces.  Finally, a thick-walled vessel with a heavy lid held rounds of flat bread, still warm from the oven.

It was a feast!

Bonnie wasted no time.  She poured a dollop of wine into a stoneware cup and followed it with a splash of water, then used a wooden spoon to stir the mixture.  The result was delicious, and refreshing after hours of being tightly gagged.  She began sampling the various dishes.  Everything was delicious.

Bonnie had no idea why her captors were suddenly being so nice.  She knew interrogators often used the carrot and the stick as part of the process of breaking a prisoner's will, and possibly that was what was happening here.  No matter, she resolved.  I'll eat my fill and slake my thirst, but I won't get drunk.

Bonnie knew she had to be prepared for whatever would happen next.

Across the Junn-Junn Wastes

George needed her!

"Bonnie, help me!" George wailed as she ran from the pursuing raptors.  Her big brown eyes were wide with fear and her exquisite and fashionable (as always) satin ball gown was soiled and ripped.  The long, full train trailed in tatters and the pale skin of her bare shoulders and pixie face were smudged by repeated falls on the sandy floor of the tunnel.  She paused to remove the pitiful ruin of her remaining dancing slipper and chucked it at the pursuing dinosaurs, then started running, again.

The raptors were playing with her.  Their cruel, grinning mouths were lined with dagger-sharp teeth and their long, wet tongues (twice the length of the slurping appendages of the raptors that had given Bonnie a tongue bath) lolled and flicked, shedding dollops of drool as they licked their chops.  Their startlingly intelligent eyes seemed to savor the plight of their fleeing prey.  They were in no hurry, but were slowly gaining on George's desperate form.

"Please, Bonnie!" George begged.  "You promised you'd always save me!  Please!"

That was true, but Bonnie was busy.

She was kissing Trussa's smiling lips and running her hands over the tan, smooth skin of the amazon's naked body.  Her fingers combed Trussa's long, silky-soft, black hair.  Trussa was kissing her back, and stroking
her body and hair, as well.  Their breasts squeezed together, their lips slurped, and their tongues slid and probed as—
Bonnie sat bolt upright in the straw.  It was a dream, she realized.  The door was open and a dozen amazons had entered the cell.  Some had torches and some were carrying sloshing buckets, cloth-covered ceramic jars, or stacks of folded towels.

"W-what's going on?" Bonnie demanded, still half asleep.

Bonnie was pulled to her feet and held firmly by the wrists by amazons on her left and right.  "Quiet!" one of the torchbearers barked, "or we gag.  Hold still or we tie-up."

Bonnie stared straight ahead as her collar was removed and amazons wet cloths and began scrubbing her body.  They made a thorough job of it, about which Bonnie had mixed feelings.  She was glad to get clean, but it was humiliating to be treated like a dirty dog in need of a bath.  Her face, ears, and neck were scrubbed, then her hair was wet, oiled, and toweled until it was merely damp.  While the rest of Bonnie's body continued being scrubbed, her hair was combed back and plaited in a tight ponytail, the three strands entwined with narrow red ribbons.  The final six inches were tightly wrapped with the remaining ribbon and firmly knotted.  About a foot of the three red ribbons remained.  The ponytail hung down to the small of her back, like a brown and red, tapering rope with a red tassel at the end.

Once her body was clean and toweled dry, the jars were uncovered and clear, fragrant oil was rubbed on her skin.  Again, the amazons were meticulous, caressing every curve, nook, and cranny of Bonnie's form.  When they were done, her skin glistened from head to toe.

Abruptly, a knotted cloth was thrust in Bonnie's mouth, cinched tight until her cheeks bulged, then knotted at the nape of her neck, under the ponytail.  Her wrists were crossed behind her back and bound with a length of cord.  Then, a blindfold was tied over her eyes.  Finally, with an amazon holding each arm, she was marched from the cell.

An infuriatingly blind journey followed.  It was something like a quarter mile, or possibly more.  The amazons set a brisk pace.  There were occasional turns, but mostly they seemed to be traveling the more-or-less straight track of an underground highway.  On occasion, Bonnie heard distant water or machine noises, probably as they passed junctions or side tunnels.

They passed through a series of doors.  Then, Bonnie's blindfold and gag were removed and her wrists untied.  Bonnie blinked in the sudden light.  She was in an armory, surrounded by racks of shields and hand weapons.  The only firearms present were the revolvers holstered on the hips of the two amazons standing on either side of the closed door.  Two more amazons were present, one with a coiled whip and the other with a wooden staff.

The whip-wielder pointed towards the racks.  "Choose!  Shield and one weapon."

"Choose well," one of the other amazons added.

"For what?" Bonnie asked.

The amazon with the staff pointed to the shields.  "Choose!"

Bonnie went to the rack.  The shields varied from heavy infantry shields, like those carried by legionnaires of Roma in the ancient past, to bucklers the size of a small serving platter.  All were painted red on the side that would face the enemy and all had padded rims.  Those with bosses were without spikes, and the bosses were padded, as well.  She glanced at the weapons racks and saw that they all were all padded with red cloth, like the shields.

Practice weapons, Bonnie realized.

The weapons ranged from swords, to battleaxes, to maces, in almost every style with which Bonnie was familiar: sickle-swords, scimitars, short-swords, long-swords, clubs, war-hammers, and double and single bladed axes, large and small.  Only stabbing swords like rapiers and épées were missing.

Practice weapons for almost every style of close-in fighting, Bonnie amended her previous thought.  And I get to choose.

She hefted a few of the lighter shields, ignoring the bucklers and heavy shields.  She made a choice, then went to the rack of maces.  She found one that was very much like a traditional Iroquoian war club, about a yard long and with the weight at the business end pitched forward.  Sparring with shield and club had been part of her childhood education while summering with her Tuscaroran relatives.  Quite literally, it had been the "School of Hard Knocks."  The Tribes believed encouraging youngsters to whack each others with clubs built character.  Specifically, it engendered courage and taught indifference to pain, attributes highly valued among the Many Nations.

As a girl and visitor, Bonnie could have kept her participation to a polite minimum, but she'd waded in and impressed even her older, male cousins.  Thankfully, the bruises faded before she returned home to London and had to face Mother.

The heavy ball of this particular club was well-padded, but it had good balance and a good grip.  Bonnie slid her left arm through the shield's sling and grabbed its handle, then slipped the club's strap over her right wrist.  She turned and faced the amazons and gave the club a flip, letting it swing on its strap and deftly catching the handle.  She then tapped her shield—thud thud—and smiled.

"Maybe this one is warrior," one of the amazons said, and the others nodded.

They weren't mocking her.  Bonnie could tell.  "What now?" she muttered.

An amazon stepped to the far wall and pulled back a red curtain.  Behind was a door painted bright red.  She opened the door, revealing a long tunnel lit by a dozen or more widely spaced torches.  At the far end was another door, also painted red.

Bonnie frowned.  A low, rumbling noise, like crashing surf, echoed from the far end of the tunnel.  She knew the sound.  It was a large crowd.

"Fight well, warrior," the amazons said in unison.  Obviously, it was some sort of ritual.

Bonnie sighed, set her shoulders, and started down the tunnel.  The door closed behind her.  The crowd noise grew as she passed torch after torch.  As she approached the far door, it opened, as if on its own.  She crossed the threshold... and the noise became a bone-rattling ROAR!

Bonnie was in a large, circular cavern—an arena with a sand floor.

Bonnie's level was bordered by a ten foot wall.  A ring of hundreds of tall torches provided abundant light.  A waist-high wall of stone formed an inner ring.  Opposite Bonnie's red door was another door, this one painted blue.  The stone ceiling was far overhead, lost in the glare of the torches, and above the outer wall were tier upon tier of stone benches, all filled by shouting, clapping, stomping amazons—hundreds of amazons—no, thousands!  The noise was deafening.  It was also unlike any crowd Bonnie had ever heard.  Every voice was female, and enthusiastically uninhibited in a way frowned upon, even forbidden in Luropean society.

There was a momentary lull, and a soprano voice shouted, "Bonnie!"

Bonnie searched the crowd.  It was George, she was sure of it.


And there she was, wearing a white top and loincloth and seated next to the Queen, the amazon who had chatted with Trussa before Bonnie was delivered into the care of the she-giants and was forced to watch the workings of their machine.  George's hands were behind her back and Bonnie suspected she was bound.  Bonnie opened her mouth to shout George's name in return—and the crowd roared as never before!

Across the arena, the blue door was opening.


Across the Junn-Junn Wastes