Lady Castilla came home late from a tiring night at the office to find her assistant Geordi still on the phones.
She waited patiently until he hung up the call, taking the time to strip off her business-wear and slide into a robe and her favorite slippers. Only when she heard the click of the phone did she click the leash onto the back of Geordi’s collar.
“How long have you been on the phone today?”
He may have been property by law, but he was her most valuable assistant. There was no groveling in his voice when he answered her. “Twelve hours.”
“Don’t you think it’s time for a break?”
Now, he hesitated. “There’s still the calls for the Mansfield problem to deal with…”
“It’s time for a time-out, Geordi.” Lady Castilla tugged on the leash, pulling him back in his chair. “Clothes. Off.”
“I’ve really got to get this paperwork done…” He was not so pampered or valuable as to directly disobey; he was already unbuttoning his shirt.
“The paperwork will be there when we’re done. You’ve been overworking yourself.” She gave him enough slack on the leash to work, but not enough that he forgot it was there.
“There’s always more work.” He draped his shirt over his chair and moved on to his pants.
“Then I’ll buy you an assistant.”
“They’ll just mis-file everything, like the last one.” He dropped his pants and knelt to finish with socks and shoes. “The work has to get done.”
“Later.” He was already on all fours; she gave the leash another tug. “Come on.”
“But the paperwork…”
“No more words, Geordi.” The closet was well-appointed, the cage inside it even more so. “Your mistress is telling you it’s time for time-out.”
“But the Mansfield problem…” He tugged back against the leash, as futile as that was.
“Later.” She put her slippered foot on his bare butt and gave him a firm shove into the padded cage. The leash, she threaded through the bars and hooked above his head, leaving him just enough slack to curl up comfortably. “Rest.”
She padlocked the cage door and stepped back, watching. He looked at the lock, and back at her. “But…” The tension left his shoulders. “Yes, Mistress. Thank you.”
“No more words now, Geordi. I mean it.” She passed a sippy-cup of Merlot through the bars. “Rest.”
She closed the closet door on the cage, leaving him relaxing wordlessly with his wine.
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