The Institution of Free Companionship
As many tend to believe Free Companionship is not celebrated only for political and financial interests, but it is rather associated with true love.
"There is no marriage, as we know it, on Gor, but there is the institute of the Free Companionship, which is its nearest correspondent. Surprisingly enough, a woman who is bought from her parents, for tarns or gold, is regarded as a Free Companion, even though she may not have been consulted in the transaction. More commendably, a free woman may herself, of her own free will, agree to be such a companion. And it is not unusual for a master to free one of his slave girls in order that she may share the full privileges of a Free Companionship. One may have, at a given time, an indefinite number of slaves, but only one Free Companion. Such relationships are not entered into lightly, and they are normally sundered only by death. Occasionally the Gorean, like his brothers in our world, perhaps even more frequently, learns the meaning of love."
"Outlaw of Gor" page 22
"Perhaps Lara understood, as I did not, that women such as silver masks must be taught love, and can learn it only from a master. It was not her intention to condemn her sisters of Tharna into interminable and miserable bondage but to force them to take this strange first step on the road she herself has travelled, one of the unusual roads that may lead to love. When I had questioned her, Lara had said to me that only when true love is learned is the Free Companionship possible, and that some women can learn love only in chains. I wondered at her words."
"Outlaw of Gor" page 115
"Do Masters ever love their slaves?" she asked. "Often," I said. Indeed, a female slave is the easiest of all women to love; too, of course, she is the most natural of all women to love; these things have to do with the equations of nature, in particular, those of dominance and submission. To a man a female slave is a dream come true. A free woman, understandably, cannot begin to compete with the female slave for a man's love. That is perhaps another reason why free women so hate their vulnerable, in bonded sisters. If a free woman would assure herself her man's love she could not do better than, in effect, become his slave. She can beg of him, if she senses in herself the true bondage of love, an enslavement ceremony, in which she proclaims herself, and becomes, his slave. In their most secret and intimate relations thereafter she lives and loves as his slave."
"Blood Brothers of Gor" page 101
"Gently he lowered his head and kissed her. She cried out, pressing her head to his shoulder.
He removed from her throat the slave collar.
"No," she said. "Please, no!" She looked at him, suddenly afraid. "No!" she cried. "Keep me! Keep me!"
“Would you consent,” asked Relius, “to be the companion of a Warrior?” “Companion?” she asked. Relius nodded his head. He held her very gently. She looked at him, unable to comprehend his words. “It is the hope of Relius, “ said he, “that the free woman, Virginia, might care for a simple Warrior, one who much loves her, and accept him as her companion.” She could not speak. There were tears bright in her eyes. She began to cry, to laugh. “Drink with me the cup of the Free Companionship,” said Relius, rather sternly.
"Yes, Master," said Virginia, "yes!"
"Relius," said he.
"I love you!" she cried. "I love you, Relius!"
"Bring the wine of Free Companionship!" decreed Marlenus.
The wine was brought and Relius and Virginia, lost in one another's eyes, arms interlocked, drank together.
He carried her from the court of the Ubar, she lying against him, weeping with happiness."
"Assassin of Gor" page 401
"Talena looked into my eyes. "What will you do with me?" she asked. "I will take you to Ko-ro-ba," I said, "to my city" "As your slave?" she smiled. "If you will have me," I said, "as my Free Companion." "I accept, Tarl of Ko-ro-ba by," said Talena with love in her eyes. "I accept you as my Free Companion." "If you did not." I laughed, "I would throw you across my saddle and carry you to Ko-ro-ba by force."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 213
"My business," said Imnak, "concerns Poalu, the daughter of Kadluk."
"Your business is more serious than mine," I said. "Mine pertains only to the saving of the world." I well remembered Poalu, the coppery spitfire whose kicked leather ball I had unwisely permitted to strike me.
"I do not understand," said Imnak.
"It does not matter," I said. "What of Poalu?"
"I love her," said Imnak.
"That is unfortunate," I said.
"Do you love her, too?" he asked.
"No," I said. "I thought that it was unfortunate for you."
"Oh," he said. Then he said, "That is not unlikely, but it is difficult to help matters of that sort."
"True," I said.
"And Poalu loves me, too," he said.
"Are you sure?" I asked.
"Yes," he said, "once when I took feasting clothes to her father's house she threw the urine pot at me."
"That is a hopeful sign," I said.
"Another time," he said, cheerfully, "she beat me with a stick, calling me a good-for-nothing."
"It is clear she is very interested in you," I said.
"It is strange that so beautiful a girl has so few suitors," he said.
"Yes, it is quite strange," I admitted.
"Akko, who is my friend," said Imnak, "says that to take such a woman would be to leap naked into a pit of starving snow sleen. Do you think so?"
"I think so," I said. Actually I thought Akko's appraisal of the potentialities of the situation was overly hopeful, it being colored by his native good humor and optimism, vices endemic among red hunters.
"But I am shy," he said.
"I find that hard to believe," I said. "You seem to me a bold fellow."
"Not with women," he said.
"You are certainly fierce enough with Thimble and Thistle," I said. "They live in terror of displeasing you in the least."
"They are not women," he said.
"Oh?' I asked.
"Oh, they are women of a sort," he said, "but they are not of the People. They are nothing, only pretty, white-skinned slave beasts. They do not count."
"That is true," I said. They did not count. They were only slaves.
"Poalu is different," he said.
"That is for certain," I granted him.
"I will have Poalu!" he said, suddenly. He climbed to his feet. "Yes!" he said. "I will have Poalul"
The tabuk trotted away.
"The tabuk have gone," I said.
"But I am shy," he said. "You must help me."
"The tabuk have gone." I said.
"You must help me," he said.
"Very well," I said. 'The tabuk have gone," I added.
"I knew I could count on you," he said.
"The tabuk have gone," I said.
"Yes, I know," he said.
"What do you want me to do?" I asked.
"I am too shy to do it," he said.
"You are too shy to do what?" I asked.
"I am too shy to carry her off," he said.
"You want me to carry her off?" I asked.
"Of course," he said. "Do not worry. No one will mind."
"What about Poalu?" I asked.
He frowned. "Well, I do not know about Poalu," he admitted. "Sometimes she is moody."
"Perhaps you should carry her off yourself," I suggested.
"I am too shy to do this," he said, miserably.
"I suppose it might be done," I mused, "under the cover of darkness."
"But then you could not well see what you are doing," said Imnak. "Besides it will not be dark for several weeks."
"I know," I said. "We could wait."
"No, no, no, no, no," said Imnak.
"You want her carried off in full daylight?" I asked.
"Of course," he said. "That is the time for carrying girls off."
"Beasts of Gor" page 207/9
"What if Kadluk does not approve of my carrying off his daughter?" I asked.
"Why should he disapprove?" asked Imnak.
"Oh, I do not know," I said. "It was just a thought."
"Do not fear," said Imnak, reassuringly. "All the arrangements have been made."
"Arrangements?" I asked.
"Yes," he said.
"Kadluk, then, knows that I am to carry off his daughter?"
"Of course," said Imnak. "Surely one would not wish to carry off Kadluk's daughter without his permission.
"No," I said, "from what I have heard of Kadluk, I think not."
"That would not be polite," said Imnak.
"True," I granted him. Also I did not want a harpoon in my head. The thought of the steely-eyed Kadluk drawing a bead on me with his harpoon was unnerving. I could not get the sea sleen out of my mind.
"Does Poalu know she is supposed to be carried off?" I asked.
"Of course," said Imnak. "how else could she be ready on time?"
"I just was not thinking," I said.
"That is all right," said Imnak, generously.
"Well," I said, "let us return to the tent. The tabuk are gone and I am soaked and freezing. I will well relish a hot cup of Bazi tea."
"Ah, my friend," said Imnak, sadly, "I am sorry there is no Bazi tea."
"Recently," I said, "there was a great deal of it."
"True," said Imnak, "but now there is not."
"You used the tea to buy Poalu?" I asked.
Imnak looked at me, horrified. "I made a gift to Kadluk," he said.
"Oh," I said.
"Also," said Imnak, "there is no sugar left, and few furs."
"What of the gold pieces you took for trading?" I asked.
"I gave them to Kadluk, too," said Imnak. "and most of the wood."
"At least we have the tabuk slices from the kills we made earlier," I said, glumly.
"Kadluk likes tabuk," said Imnak.
"Oh," I said.
We trudged back, wet and miserable, to the encampments of the People."
"Beasts of Gor" page 209
"Greetings, Kadluk," I called.
A coppery face poked itself outside the tent. It was a very broad face, with high cheekbones, and very dark, bright eyes, a face framed in cut, blue-black hair, with bangs across the forehead.
"Ah," beamed Kadluk. "You must be the young man who has come to carry off my daughter."
"Yes," I said. He seemed in a good mood. He had, perhaps, waited years for this moment.
"She is not yet ready," said Kadluk, shrugging apologetically. "You know how girls are."
"Yes," I said. I looked back a few yards to where Imnak stood, lending me moral support. He smiled and waved encouragingly. Reassured I stood waiting outside the tent.
I waited for several minutes.
Another figure emerged from the tent, a woman, Tatkut, or Wick-Trimmer, the woman of Kadluk, the mother of Poalu. She smiled up at me and bowed slightly, and handed me a cup of tea.
"Thank you," I said, and drank the tea.
After a time she returned and I handed her back the cup. "Thank you again," I said.
She smiled, and nodded, and returned to the tent.
Imnak sidled up to me. He was looking worried. "It should not take this long to carry a girl off," he whispered. I nodded.
"It should not take this long to carry a girl off," I called. Imnak backed away, expectantly.
Inside the tent then we heard an argument in course. There was much expostulation. I could make out Poalu's voice, and that of Kadluk and Tatkut. They spoke in their own tongue and I could pick up but few of the words. I did hear the expression for Bazi tea a few times. I gathered that Kadluk had little intention, or desire at any rate, to return Imnak's quantities of Bazi tea, or other gifts, to him.
After a time Kadluk's head reappeared. "She does not want to be carried off," he said.
"Well, that is that," I shrugged. I turned to Imnak. "She does not want to be carried off," I said. "Let us return to our tent."
"No, no!" cried Imnak. "You must now rush into the tent and carry her off by force."
"Is Kadluk armed?" I asked.
"What possible difference could that make?" asked Imnak.
"I thought it might make a difference," I said. I still remembered the harpoon and the sleen.
"No," said Imnak. "Kadluk!" he called.
Kadluk came outside the tent.
"It seems your daughter must be carried away by force," said Imnak.
"Yes," agreed Kadluk. This reassured me.
"Go ahead," said Imnak. "Go in and get her."
"Very well," I said.
"She has a knife," said Kadluk.
"Go ahead," urged Imnak.
"We need not make haste in this matter," I observed. "Are you sure you really want to have Poalu in your tent? Perhaps you should subject the matter to further consideration."
"But we love one another," said Imnak.
"Why do you not go in and get her yourself?" I asked.
"I am too shy," said Imnak, hanging his head.
"Perhaps she will listen to reason," I said, hopefully.
Kadluk turned about, holding his sides. In a moment he was rolling on the ground. Red hunters are often demonstrative in the matter of their emotions. In a few moments ho had regained his composure, wiping the tears from his eyes."
"Beasts of Gor" page 211/3
"I lifted aside the tent flap, cautiously, Inside was Poalu. She was dressed in feasting clothes. Near her was her mother, Tatkut, beaming her pride in her daughter.
I dodged as the knife sailed past my head, narrowly missing Imnak outside.
"You will never carry me off by force!" she cried.
"I grant you the likelihood of that," I said.
She seized a heavy iron pan, of the sort used out of doors across stones for cooking.
It would not be pleasant to have that utensil beating on my head.
"Look," I said, "I am supposed to carry you off."
"Don't touch me," she said.
"The arrangements have all been made," I pointed out.
"I did not make them," she said.
That seemed to me a good point. "She says she did not make the arrangements," I called out to Imnak.
"That does not matter," called Imnak in to me.
"That does not matter," I told her.
"It does matter," she said.
"It does matter, she says," I relayed to Imnak, outside.
"No, it does not matter," he 'said.
"It does not matter," I relayed to Poalu, from Imnak outside.
"She is only a woman," pointed out Imnak.
"You are only a woman," I told her, relaying Imnak's point. It seemed to me a good one.
She then rushed forward, striking down at me with the heavy, flat pan. I removed it from her. I did this that I not be killed.
She then fled to the back of the tent. She looked about, but found nothing else which seemed suitable as a weapon. Kadluk, I then understood, had wisely removed his gear, such as knives and arrows, from the tent before Imnak and. I had arrived.
His daughter was as well known to him as others, of course.
"Would you please hand me the blubber hammer behind you," asked Poalu.
Obligingly I handed her the hammer. I thought I could probably avoid or fend its blows. The object, wooden-handled, with a stone head, is used for pounding blubber to loosen the oil in the blubber, which is used in the flat, oval lamps.
"Thank you," said Poalu.
"You're welcome," I said.
She then faced me, holding the hammer.
"If you do not wish to be carried off," I said, "why are you wearing your feasting clothes?"
"Isn't she pretty?" asked Tatkut, smiling.
"Yes," I admitted.
Poalu looked at me, shrewdly. "I am not your ordinary girl," she said, "whom you may simply carry off."
"That seems certain," I granted her.
"Where is Imnak?" she asked.
Surely she knew he was just outside the tent. "He is just outside the tent," I said.
"Why does he not carry me off?" she asked.
"I wish that he would," I said. "He is shy."
"Well," she said, "I am not going."
"She says she is not going," I called out to Imnak.
There was a pause. Then I heard Imnak say, "That is all right with me."
Poalu seemed startled. I was relieved. I turned about to take my departure.
"Wait," she said. "Aren't you going to carry me off?"
"I would be content," I said, "if it were up to me, to leave you in your father's tent forever."
I heard Imnak outside. "Yes," he said, "it is all right with me if she does not come."
"I will give you back your gifts, Imnak," said Kadluk, rather more loudly than was necessary.
"You may keep them," said Imnak, expansively.
"No, I could not do that," said Kadluk. I found myself hoping that he would indeed return Imnak's gifts. We in Imnak's tent could use that Bazi tea, those furs and the tabuk steaks.
"It will be amusing to hear the songs they will sing in the feasting house about Poalu," said Imnak, loudly, "how no one wants her."
"How can you carry me off?" called Poalu. "You have no sled."
"There is no snow," I said to her.
"There is a proper way and an improper way to do things," said Poalu to me.
"Oh, look," said Imnak, "here is a sled."
Poalu, still clutching the blubber hammer, poked her head outside.
There was indeed a sled there, that which Imnak had built at the wall, and which the girls had drawn, that sled by means of which his supplies and gear had been transported across Ax Glacier.
Harnessed to the sled, in their full furs, were Thimble, Thistle and Arlene.
"Ho! Ho!" called Poalu, derisively. "You would expect to carry a girl off in a sled drawn by white-skinned slave beasts! What a scoundrel you are! How insulting!"
"I will borrow a snow sleen," said Imnak. "Will that be sufficient?"
I thought a snow sleen, one of those long, vicious animals, would surely be puzzled to find itself attached to a sled where there was no snow.
"Perhaps," called Poalu.
Imnak unhitched Thimble, Thistle and Arlene. They stood about, puzzled. He then turned and left the vicinity of the tent. "Would you like more tea?" asked Tatkut.
"Yes, thank you," I said. I was at least getting some of the tea back which Imnak had given to Kadluk.
In a few minutes Imnak returned with a snow sleen on a stout leash. Soon it was hitched to the sled. It was Akko's animal, and he, in the fashion of the red hunters, had cheerfully volunteered its services.
"Someone has a snow sleen hitched to a sled outside of the tent of someone," called Imnak.
"It is a poor beast," said Poalu. "Find a better."
"Someone has not even looked at it," said Imnak.
Poalu stuck her head out the tent. "It is a poor beast." said Poalu. "Find a better."
Imnak, for no reason that was clear to me, scouted about and located another snow sleen.
"That is worse than the other," said Poalu.
Imnak angrily unhitched the second animal, and rehitched the first one, that which belonged to Akko.
"Surely you do not expect me to ride behind so poor a beast?" inquired Poalu.
"Of course not," said Imnak. He made ready to leave.
"What are you doing?" asked Poalu.
"I am going away," said Imnak. "I am going to my tent."
"I suppose it will have to do," said Poalu.
"You could strike her heavily along the side of the head." said Kadluk to me. "That is what I did with Tatkut." Tatkut nodded, beaming.
"It is a thought," I said.
"Will no one protect a girl from being carried off!" cried Poalu.
She still carried the blubber hammer. If struck properly with it one might be brained.
"Is there no one who will save me?" wailed Poalu.
Kadluk looked about, anxious should anyone interfere. There were by now several bystanders about.
"Naartok," cried Poalu, "will you not save me?"
A heavy fellow nearby shook his head vigorously. He still carried his right arm high and close to his body, his shoulder hunched somewhat. I recalled that Poalu had in the past driven her blade into his body somewherer in that vicinity. Imnak had warned me that Naartok, his rival, might try to kill me, to prevent my carrying Poalu off. Naartok, however, seemed competely willing that I should undertake that task. It was clear that I had his best wishes for success in this endeavor. Naartok, like many of the red hunters, was not a fellow to be bitter about such things.
"Come along," I said to Poalu. "It will soon be dark." That was true. In a few weeks the Arctic night would descend.
She hurled the blubber hammer at my head and I slipped to the side. It sped past me and struck Naartok a cruel blow on the forehead.
She fled back into the tent and I nimbly pursued her. In the tent I scooped her up and threw her over my shoulder. Her small fists beat rapidly on my back.
"Will you stop that?" I asked.
"I do not want to go," she said.
"Oh," I said.
I put her to her feet and turned about, leaving the tent. "She says she does not want to go," I told Imnak.
"Go back," urged Imnak.
"Nonsense," I said. "Look, Imnak," I said, "I value your friendship but I have really had enough of this. I frankly do not think Poalu wants to be carried off by me."
Imnak looked at me, miserable.
"That is my considered opinion," I told him, confirming his fears.
"You will just have to carry her off yourself," I said.
"I am too shy," he wailed.
"Well, let us go home then," I said, "for I have drunk enough tea at the tent of Kadluk and evaded enough missiles to last me for several years."
"It is true," said Imnak, glumly. "You have endured more than one could rightfully ask of a friend."
"Beasts of Gor" page 213/7
"Where are you lazy men going?" asked Poalu.
"Home," said Imnak.
We began to trudge back toward Imnak's tent. It was some two hundred yards away. Imnak led the snow sleen, drawing the sled on the tundra, and I walked beside him. Thimble, Thistle and Arlene walked beside the sled.
"Imnak is a lazy fellow!" called Poalu. "Imnak cannot sing in the feasting house! Imnak cannot paddle a kayak! Imnak is a poor hunter!"
"I am getting angry," said Imnak to me.
"Red hunters do not get angry," I told him.
"Sometimes red hunters get angry," said Imnak.
"I did not know that," I said.
"Yes," said Imnak.
"Imnak is a lazy fellow! Imnak is a terrible hunter! I am fortunate not to be Imnak's woman. Pity the poor woman who goes to Imnak's tent! I am pleased that I am not going to his tent! I would not go to his tent for anything!"
"I have had enough," said Imnak suddenly.
"A man does have his pride," I said.
"It is unfortunate that I am so shy," said Imnak between gritted teeth.
"Yes," I said, "that is unfortunate."
Suddenly Imnak threw back his head and howled at the sky. He made a wild animal noise and, wheeling about, in his fur boots, sped rapidly back toward the tent of Kadluk.
"Let us continue on," I said to the girls. We continued on, toward Imnak's tent, not looking back. The snow sleen padded along behind us, drawing the sled over the trodden turf.
Behind us we heard cheering.
We did not look back until we came to the threshold of Imnak's tent.
A large crowd was approaching, yet in such a way as to give Imnak room. Leading the crowd, but seeming half in the midst of it, came Imnak. He was pulling a bent over, stumbling, screaming, fighting figure behind him, his hand in her hair. She wore feasting clothes.
At the opening to his tent he threw her over his shoulder. Her feet were then off the ground, and she was helpless. She could be carried wherever he chose, and placed wherever he chose to place her. He carried her inside the tent, and threw her to the furs at his feet.
She looked up at him in fury. She tried to get up, but he pushed her back down.
"You are wearing feasting clothes," he said. "Do you think you are going to a feast?"
She looked up at him.
"No," he said, "you are not going to a feast. You do not need to wear feasting clothes."
"Imnak," she said.
"Take them off, everything!" he said.
"Imnak," she cried.
"Now!" he said.
Frightened, she stripped herself, and crouched on the fur in his tent. Nudity is not unusual among the red hunters. But even for them it is a treat to see a girl as pretty as Poalu stripped naked. I suspected that we would have numerous guests in the house of Imnak.
Imnak then bound her wrists together before her body and pulled her to her feet. "Imnak!" she cried. He pulled her from the tent, stumbling, to the pole behind the tent, that from which tabuk meat was sometimes hung to dry. A few days ago Arlene had been tied to the pole. Imnak fastened Poalu's hands over her head and to the pole.
"Imnak!" she cried. "What are you going to do?"
Imnak, who had returned to the tent after fastening her in place, returned to the pole. He carried a sleen whip.
"Imnak," she cried, "what are you going to do?"
"Only one can be first," cried Imnak.
"Imnak!" she cried, struck.
The hunters and the women gathered about cheered Imnak on. He put the leather to her well.
Then she cried out, "It is Imnak who is first in his tent!" She shuddered in the straps that bound her. Then she was struck again. "Imnak is first!" she cried. "Imnak! Imnak!"
He thrust the whip in his belt.
He went before her, where she could see him. "You are first, Imnak," she wept. "I am your woman. Your woman will obey you. Your woman will do what you tell her."
"No, Imnak!" she cried.
"Aiii," cried a man in the crowd.
He tied bondage strings on her throat.
The men and women in the crowd roared their approval. They stomped on the turf. Some began to sing.
None, I think, had thought to see so rare and delicious a sight as bondage strings on the throat of the arrogant, fiery Poalu.
Her temper and sharp tongue, I think, had made many enemies among the red hunters and their women. There were few there I think who did not relish seeing her in bondage strings. She might now be beaten with impunity, and must obey free men and women.
"Now," said Kadluk, her father, "you will not come running home to the tent."
He rubbed his nose affectionately on the side of her face, patted her on the head and turned away.
"Father!" she cried.
"Do I hear the wind?" he asked, his back to her.
"Father!" she cried.
"Yes," he said, "I hear the wind." Then he left.
Indeed, she could not now go running home to the tent of her father. Imnak, if he wished, could slay her for such an act. She wore bondage strings.
The crowd began to dissipate, leaving Imnak and Poalu much alone.
"Why have you done this to me, Imnak?" asked Poalu.
"I wanted to own you," he said.
"I did not know a man could want a woman so much that he would want to own her," said Poalu.
"Yes," said Imnak.
"I did not know you would be strong enough to own me," she said.
"I am strong enough to own you," he said.
"Yes," she said, "it is true. I see in your eyes that it is true."
He said nothing.
"And you will own me?" she asked.
"Yes," he said.
"It is a strange feeling, being owned," she said. Imnak shrugged.
"I have loved you since we were children, Imnak," she whispered. "I have thought for years that I would someday be your woman. But I did not think, ever, that I would be your beast." She looked at him. "Will you truly make me obey you, Imnak?" she asked.
"Yes," he said.
She smiled. "Your beast is not discontent," she said.
He touched her softly with his nose about the cheek and throat. It is a thing red hunters do. It is a very gentle thing, like smelling and nuzzling.
Then his hands were hard on her waist.
She looked up at him. 'The lamp must be lit," she said, "and the water heated, that I may boil meat for supper."
"Supper may wait," he said.
He began to caress her, with tender, powerful caresses, gentle yet strong, possessive, commanding, as one may touch something which one owns and loves.
She began to breathe more swiftly. "Imnak," she whispered, "you may do what you want with a beast, and a beast must do, fully, what you want."
"That is known to me," he said.
"Oh, Imnak!" she cried. "Please! Please!"
Then her hands were untied from the pole, and freed, and she knelt at his feet. At his gesture, she, frightened, pressed her lips to his boots, and then looked up at him, waiting to be commanded.
He indicated that she should crawl to the tent. She did so, and he walked behind her, the whip now loose in his hand. I saw him thrust it, crossways, between her teeth and throw her back to the furs. She looked up at him, the whip clenched, in her teeth. This is a device which helps to keep a slave girl quiet in her ecstasies. She can then do little more than gasp and squirm.
Imnak looked about, and drew shut the flaps of the tent."
"Beasts of Gor" page 217/221
"She laughed as I swept her from her feet and lifted her to the saddle of my giant tarn. In the saddle, her arms were around my neck, her lips on mine. "Are you a true warrior?" she asked, her eyes bright with mischief, testing me, her voice breathless. "We shall see," I laughed. Then, in accord with the rude bridal customs of Gor, as she furiously but playfully struggled, as she squirmed and protested and pretended to resist, I bound her bodily across the saddle of the tarn. Her wrists and ankles were secured, and she lay before me, arched over the saddle, helpless, a captive, but of love and her own free will. The warriors laughed, Marlenus the loudest. "It seems I belong to you, bold Tarnsman," she said. "What are you going to do with me?" In answer, I hauled on the one-strap, and the great bird rose into the air, higher and higher, even into the clouds, and she cried to me, "Let it be now, Tarl," and even before we had passed the outermost ramparts of Ar, I had untied her ankles and flung her single garment to the streets below, to show her people what had been the fate of the daughter of their Ubar."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 213
"I have my reasons for freeing you."
"My father," she said, "and my brothers will reward you."
"No," I said.
"If you wish, they are bound in honor to grant me to you, without bride price.
"The ride to Thentis will be long." I said.
She replied proudly, "My bride price would be a hundred tarns."
I whistled softly to myself--my ex-slave would have come high. On a Warrior's allowance I would not have been able to afford her."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 71
"Then I thought to myself, a hundred tarns indeed! Forty perhaps, because she was a beauty. For a hundred tarns one might have the daughter of an Administrator, for a thousand perhaps even the daughter of the Ubar of Ar! A thousand tarns would make a formidable addition to the cavalry forces of a Gorean warlord. Sana, collar or no, had the infuriating, endearing vanity of the young and beautiful of her sex."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 72
"I have never seen my father except on the days of public festivals. High Caste daughters in Ar are raised in the Walled Gardens, like flowers, until some highborn suitor, preferably a Ubar or Administrator, will pay the bride price set by their fathers."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 106
“When,” I asked, “High Lady, will you drink the wine of the Free Companionship with Lurius, noble Ubar of Cos?” “I shall return first to Tyros,” she said, “where I shall be made ready. Then, with treasure ships, we shall return in festive voyage to the harbour of Telnus, where I shall take the arm of Lurius and with him drink the cup of the Free Companionship.” “May I wish you, Lady,” said I, “a safe and pleasant voyage, and much future happiness.” She nodded her head, and smiled. “You spoke of treasure ships,” I said. “Of course,” said she. “It seems then,” said I, “that your body alone is not enough for noble Lurius.” “Tarsk!” she said.
"Raiders of Gor" Page 180
"Cos and Port Kar, of course, are enemies, but, if the Companion Price offered Lurius were sufficient, I would not expect him to hesitate in giving me the girl. The alliance, of course, would be understood, on all sides, as not altering the political conditions obtaining between the cities. It was up to Lurius to dispose of his daughter as he saw fit. She might not desire to come to Port Kar, but the feelings of the girl are not considered in such matters. Some high-born women are less free than the most abject of slave girls."
"Hunters of Gor" page 174
"Ah, my friend," said Imnak, sadly, "I am sorry there is no Bazi tea." "Recently," I said, "there was a great deal of it." "True," said Imnak, "but now there is not." "You used the tea to buy Poalu?" I asked. Imnak looked at me, horrified. "I made a gift to Kadluk," he said. "Oh," I said. "Also," said Imnak, "there is no sugar left, and few furs." "What of the gold pieces you took for trading?" I asked. "I gave them to Kadluk, too," said Imnak. "and most of the wood." "At least we have the tabuk slices from the kills we made earlier," I said, glumly. "Kadluk likes tabuk," said Imnak.
"Beasts of Gor" page 209/210
"It seemed not unlikely that the match would ultimately prove profitable and politically expedient for both Fortress of Saphronicus and the Salerian Confederation. In the match, there was much to gain by both parties. The Companion Contract, thus, had been duly negotiated, with the attention of scribes of the law from both Fortress of Saphronicus and the Confederation of Saleria."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 111
"Some Goreans think of the Free Companionship as being a form of contract slavery; this is not, of course, precisely correct; on the other hand, if more women took that definition seriously, I have little doubt but what free companionships would be far more rewarding than they now are, for many couples. They might then, under that interpretation, and held contractually enforceable on the woman, be that next best thing to her actual slavery."
"Blood Brothers of Gor" Page 246
"Your slave needs, he said, made you a thousand times more desirable. What man does not want a slave? She looked at him startled. It was thus my intention to take you into honourable companionship, he said, but in the privacy of our quarters, away from the sight of the world, to put you in a collar, and keep you as a slave, even to the whip."
"Guardsman of Gor" page 257
The Companion Journey
"The Companion Journey, then, when the auspices had been favourable, as they promptly were, these determined by the inspection of the condition and nature of the liver of a sacrificial verr, examined by members of the caste of Initiates, had begun. The journey itself, overland and afoot from Fortress of Saphronicus to Ti, would take several days, but it was ceremonially prolonged in order that the four tributary villages of Fortress of Saphronicus might be visited."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 111
"The Betrothal or Companion Journey, ceremonially, included the circuit of the four villages, in each of which a feast was held, and from each of which a wagon of produce was procured, to be added to the dowry riches to be presented to Ebullius Gaius Cassius, father of Thandar of Ti, to be included in the treasury of Ti."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 112
"In certain cities, in connection with the free companionship, the betrothed or pledged beauty may wear eight veils, several of which are ritualistically removed during various phases of the ceremony of companionship; the final veils, and robes, of course, are removed in private by the male who, following their removal, arms interlocked with the girl, drinks with her the wine of the companionship, after which he completes the ceremony. This sort, of thing, however, varies considerably from city to city. In some cities the girl is unveiled, though not disrobed, of course, during the public ceremony. The friends of the male may then express their pleasure and joy in her beauty, and their celebration of the good fortunes of their friend. The veil, it might be noted, is not legally imperative for a free woman; it is rather a matter of modesty and custom."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 106
"When I returned to Ko-ro-ba with Talena, a great feast was held and we celebrated our Free Companionship. A holiday was declared, and the city was ablaze with light and song. Shimmering strings of bells pealed in the wind, and festive lanterns of a thousand colours swung from the innumerable flower-strewn bridges. There was shouting and laughter, and the glorious colours of the castes of Gor mingled equally in the cylinders. Gone for the night was even the distinction of master and slave, and many a wretch in bondage would see the dawn as a free man. To my delight, even Torm , of the Caste of Scribes, appeared at the tables. I was honoured that the little scribe had separated himself from his beloved scrolls long enough to share my happiness, only that of a warrior. He was wearing a new robe and sandals, perhaps for the first time in m years. He clasped my hands, and, to my wonder, the little scribe was crying. And then in his joy, he turned to Talena and in gracious salute lifted the symbolic cup of Ka-la-na wine to her beauty."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 349
"Talena and I swore to honour that day as long as either of us lived. I have tried to keep that promise, and I know that she has done so as well. That night, that glorious night, was a night of flowers, torches, and Ka-la-na wine, and late, after sweet hours of love, we fell asleep in each other's arms."
"Tarnsman of Gor" page 349
"For years Talena, the magnificent Talena, had been in my heart’s deepest dreams, my first love, my never forgotten love. She had burned in my memory, unforgettably. I recalled her from the fields near the Swamp Forest south of Ar, in the caravan of Mintar, at the great camp of Pa-Kur'’ horde, as she had been upon Ar'’ lofty cylinder of justice, as she had been in lamp-lit Ko-ro-ba, when, with interlocking arms, we had drunk the wines of Free Companionship."
"Hunters of Gor" page 5
"Bring the wine of Free Companionship,” decreed Marlenus. The wine was brought and Relius and Virginia, lost in one another’s eyes, arms interlocked, drank together. He carried her from the court of the Ubar, she lying against him, weeping with happiness. There were cheers in the court of the Ubar."
"Assassin of Gor" page 402
"In the distance, perhaps some forty pasangs away, I saw a set of ridges, lofty and steep, rearing out of a broad, yellow meadow of talenders, a delicate, yellow-petaled flower, often woven into garlands by Gorean maidens. In their own quarters, unveiled Gorean women, with their family or lovers, might fix talenders in their hair. A crown of talender was often worn by the girl at the feast celebrating her Free Companionship."
"Outlaw of Gor" page 59
"The talender is a flower which, in the Gorean mind, is associated with beauty and passion. Free Companions, on the Feast of their Free Companionship, commonly wear a garland of talenders."
"Raiders of Gor" Page 216/217
Status of the Woman
"A Gorean free woman does not change her name in the ceremony of the Free Companionship. She remains who she was. In such a ceremony two free individuals have elected to become companions. The Earth woman, as a consequence of certain mating ceremonials, may change her last name. The first and other names, however, tend to remain constant. From the Gorean point of view the wife of Earth occupies a status which is higher than that of the slave but lower than that of the Free Companion."
"Explorers of Gor" Page 365
"Daughters, unlike sons, are seldom economic assets to the family. Indeed they cannot even pass on the gens name. They can retain it in companionship, if they wish, if suitable contractual arrangements are secured, but they cannot pass it on. The survival of the name and the continuance of the patriarchal line are important to many Goreans."
"Mercenaries of Gor" page 303
"In taking companionship with one of the Warriors she would raise caste, for the Warriors on Gor are among the High Castes." "Slave Girl of Gor" page 113
"Normally mating takes place among caste members, but if the mating is of mixed caste, the woman may elect to retain caste, which is commonly done, or be received into the caste of the male companion. Caste membership of the children born into such a union is a function of the caste of the father. Similar considerations, in certain cities, hold of citizenship."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 113
Privileges of the Woman
"That a male of Earth may not even know what clothing his wife owns, or what she buys, would be unthinkable to most Goreans, even those who stand in free companionship."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 76
"At this I swept her from her feet and carried her to the broad stone couch in the room, where I placed her on the piles of furs that bedecked it. "I have heard," she said, smiling up at me, "that it is only a Free Companion who is accorded the dignities of the couch" "True," I cried."
"Assassin of Gor" page 56
"She is a slave," I said to him, "not a free companion, who may not be touched, to whom nothing may be done, even if she turns your life into a torture, even if she drives you mad, even if she intends to destroy you, hort by hort."
"Magicians of Gor" page 467
"In a man's own hut," said he, "he must be master, even though he has selected out for himself a companion. It is the part of his companion to befriend and aid him, not to insult and drive him."
"Slave Girl of Gor" page 241
"Port Kar does not recognize the Free Companionship, but there are free women in the city, who are known simply as the women of their men. "Are you my woman?"- I asked. "Yes," she said. "Then," I said, "obey me."
"Raiders of Gor" page 295
"This harsh treatment, incidentally, when she is thought to deserve it, may even be inflicted on a Free Companion, in spite of the fact that she is free and usually much loved.
According to the Gorean way of looking at things a taste of the slave ring is thought to be occasionally beneficial to all women, even the exalted Free Companions.
Thus when she has been irritable or otherwise troublesome even a Free Companion may find herself at the foot of the couch looking forward to a pleasant night on the stones, stripped, with neither mat nor blanket, chained to a slave ring precisely as though she were a lowly slave girl. It is the Gorean way of reminding her, should she need to be reminded, that she, too, is a woman, and thus to be dominated, to be subject to men. Should she be tempted to forget this basic fact of Gorean life the slave ring set in the bottom of each Gorean couch is there to refresh her memory. Gor is a man’s world."
"Priest Kings of Gor" page 52
"He had apparently now gone to the heart of the matter. If she were still his free companion, it seemed she would now be kept in the modality of bondage, but perhaps she was now only his former free companion, and had been reduced to actual bondage, now being subject to purchase by anyone. I recalled how she had bent in terror to kiss his feet. There was no doubt that she would now take her relationship to him seriously. It is difficult not to do so when one is owned, and subject to the whip. The woman would now discover that her companion, or former companion, a fellow perhaps hitherto taken somewhat too lightly, one perhaps hitherto accorded insufficient attention and respect, one perhaps hitherto neglected and ignored, even despised and scorned, was indeed a man, and one who now would see to it that she served him well, one who would now own and command her, one who would summon forth the woman in her, and claim from her, and receive from her, the total entitlements of the master."
"Renegades of Gor" pages 144
Dissolving the Free Companionship
“It is long since you have been the Free Companion of Talena, daughter of Marlenus,” said Samos. “The Companionship, not renewed annually, is at an end. And you were once enslaved.”
"Hunters of Gor" Page 9
"It was true that the Companionship, not renewed, had been dissolved in the eyes of Gorean law. It was further true that, had it not been so, the Companionship would have been terminated abruptly when one or the other of the pledged companions fell slave."
Hunters of Gor" page 9
"I was kept in great honour in Ko-ro-ba,” she said, “respected and free, for I had been your companion, even after the year of the companionship had gone, and it had not been renewed.” At that point, in Gorean law, the companionship had been dissolved. The companionship had not been renewed by the twentieth hour, the Gorean Midnight, of its anniversary.
"Maurauders of Gor" page 11
"The next to appear before Bila Huruma were two members of the nobility, a man and his companion. He complained of her that she had been unwilling to please him. By one word and a stroke of his hand between them Bila Huruma dissolved their companionship. He then ordered that the man be put in the dress of a woman and beaten from the court with sticks. This was done. He then ordered that the woman be stripped and a vine leash be put on her neck. She was then sentenced to a barrack of askaris for a year, that she might learn how to please men."
"Explorers of Gor" page 231