These are relevant references from the Books where Jail is mentioned.
I make no pronouncements on these matters, but report them as I find them.
Arrive at your own conclusions.
I wish you well,
The chained shape did not move. Samos took a stick from beside the door, with which the jailer thrust the pan of water or food toward the shape.
The cell had been cleaned, straw and wastes removed, rinsed down; most of the blood had been scrubbed from the stones; behind remained, here and there, only some stubborn, darkish stains; new straw had been spread; the kort rinds had been taken. Little remained to give evidence of the conflict which had earlier transpired in the chamber. Even the barred window had been repaired. The scrubbing, and cleaning, to my interest, had been done by jailers.
"Do not keep me in this place!" screamed Tafa. "Please! Please!" But they did not unlock the collar. An urt scampered across the stones, disappearing between two blocks of stone in the wall. Tafa screamed and threw herself to the feet of one of the jailers, holding his legs, kissing at him. With his left and right hand he checked the collar at her throat, holding it with his left hand and, with his right, jerking the chain twice against the ring, then threw her from him, to the straw.
"Who are our jailers?" I asked Arlene.
"I have seen only men," she said.
"There are others," said Constance, shuddering. "I have seen them, large but agile beasts."
I supposed the secret slave knew well that her jailer was the blond-haired girl. But I did not think the blond-haired girl realized, or fully realized, that she herself was the slave she so cruelly suppressed.
Then again I knelt before her, precisely as she had commanded, obeying her. Frightened, I lifted my eyes to those of my sturdy jailer. Her eyes frightened me. They were cruelly hard, uncompromising, dominating. Never in my life had I seen such inflexible will manifested in the eyes of a woman. I put down my head. I realized that her will was stronger than mine. I feared she would be strict with me. I trembled. I was afraid of her.
I felt the whip under my chin, lifting my head. Again I looked at her. "Do not be afraid," she said, soothingly, "Slave."
"I am not a slave," I said.
She stepped back, and laughed. She went to my left. The wall there had the shape of a large, conical arch. The area which would have been open, however, was closed by heavy bars, reinforced every six inches or so by sturdy, lateral crosspieces. In this wall of bars, itself also formed of bars and crosspieces, was a heavy gate. Beyond the bars and crosspieces I could see a corridor, some eight feet wide. On the other side of the corridor I could see another cell. As nearly as I could tell, it was empty. My jailer stood very straight and proudly, whip in hand, by the heavy gate. Her flesh seemed very white. I saw the keys and the coiled chain which hung at her belt and, toward the back, on the right side, in their snap strap, the steel manacles she carried. "Prodicus," she called. "Gron!"
The woman in the black leather, she whom I had taken as my jailer, gave a signal.
"Kneel," said the fair-skinned, leather-clad woman, my jailer.
I knelt, terrified. I could hear the animals tearing apart the meat below.
"Speaking of jokes," I said, "what a splendid jest have we two tonight played upon our jailers."
"Keep moving," caned the pirate. Again the whip cracked. As I made my way about the windlass, treading the slatted, circular platform, with my fellow prisoners, thrusting against the metal pole, I saw, chained to the wall, and at one side, behind the water trough cut in the stone, their necks still fastened to their own poles, two other sets of prisoners. There are thus, in reserve, additional chained crews for the work of the windlass. Too, as was clear, no one at the windlass was indispensable. This comprehension doubtless played its role in keeping order amongst us. We knew that any one of us could be cut from his chains at the merest whim of our jailer.
She then stood and faced us, and put her head in her hands, bent over, and then straightened her body, her head and hair thrown back. "I?" she seemed to ask, looking out, as though some rude jailer might have come to the gate of her pen.
It then seems, as she shrinks back, lifting herself to the palms of her hands, frightened, that the gate to her pen has been opened. She kneels swiftly in the position of the pleasure slave. Obviously she fears her rude jailers.
The representative of the urt people and I complied. It was time to be fed.
The first day in this captivity I had lurked near the bars, hoping to be able to get my hands on the jailer. I had, in consequence of this, not been fed that day. I obeyed promptly enough the next day. I wanted the food. The evening of my second day in this captivity, which was the fourth following my capture, the representative of the urt people had been thrust in with me. I did not much welcome his company. He was, however, familiar with the routines of the prison.
The jailer looked into the cell. "The table has been moved," he said. He could tell this, I assumed, from the markings in the dust on the floor. It had not occurred to me that there might be any objection to this. If I had thought there would have been, I would have posted the representative of the urt people near the bars and, presumably warned by him in time of any approach on the part of a jailer, replaced the table carefully in its original position. I hoped this new offense, if offense it was, would not result in the withholding of food. I wanted it, what there was of it.
The jailer put the two trays on the floor outside the bars, and, with his foot, thrust them through the low, flat opening, like a flat rectangle, at the base of the latticework of bars. He had not yet left. We could not yet approach the food. "Bosk of Port Kar," he laughed, "kneeling and waiting for food!"
I did not respond to him. I wanted the food. I was pleased that he had not objected to the movement of the table. Then it occurred to me that it was interesting, too, that the table was in the cell. Gorean keepers are not always that considerate of their charges. Why had we not been chained close to the wall, and forced to fight with insects and rodents for our food? Gorean prisoners are seldom pampered, either of the male or female variety. I wondered if the table was in the room for a purpose, perhaps to have permitted me to see what had occurred outside in the courtyard.
The jailer then left.
He had been netted, put in a sack and brought here. That had been more than six months ago. I had learned these things from the jailer when he had thrust the creature in with me.
"Strip, enter the cubicle of the bathing cisterns," had said our jailer, five of his fellows, armed, behind him, before dawn. "Wash your stinking bodies, then emerge."
Our chains, in this area below the prison, had been removed.
"Why?" I asked.
"Obey," he had said.
I was puzzled about this. The luxury of baths is seldom permitted to Gorean prisoners, whether they are of the male or female sort. To be sure, a girl will usually be scrubbed up and made presentable before she is brought up for sale.
Perhaps they had something special in mind for us.
I saw the menacing movement of weapons.
"Leave your clothing here," said the jailer. "Enter the cubicle of the bathing cisterns."
"Kneel, Bosk of Port Kar," said Flaminius. I knelt. With Flaminius were the jailer, and his other fellows. Several had set crossbows trained on me. More importantly, one held the leashes of three snarling sleen.
"He looks well, naked and on his knees, Bosk of Port Kar, before men of Brundisium," said the jailer.
"Are you of Brundisium?" I asked Flaminius.
"I am in the fee of Brundisium," he said. "But I am of Ar." I did not understand the sort of triumph which seemed to characterize the voice of the jailer. The alliances of Brundisium were with Ar, not Tyros or Cos. I measured the distance between myself and the jailer. I wondered how long it would take to break his neck. I did not think I could reach him before the quarrels of crossbows would lodge themselves in my body. I was not a female, joyfully, rightfully, on her knees before men. The accent of Flaminius, now that I thought of it, did have traces within it which suggested Ar. To be sure, these things are sometimes difficult to determine with accuracy. It was certainly not obviously an accent of Ar. If he was of Ar, he had probably been out of the city for years.
To be sure, but a moment later, I again castigated myself, as having neglected this opportunity of inquiry or protest. Indeed, shortly after the steps had passed, I scrambled to my knees! I must be angry! I must pound upon the door! I must call out! I must insist upon attention! I must demand to see someone! I must demand release! I must bluster and threaten! I must attempt to confuse my jailers, and terrify them into compliance with my will! If necessary, I must appeal to undoubted legalities!
I had, accordingly, as yet, seen nothing of my jailers.
Then I looked back, and trembled. The jailer was there, and the fearsome beast, held on its leash. Behind the jailer and the beast I could see the ledge trail going back around the mountain.
To my right I saw the panel box, locked now, within which must lie the locking mechanism to the cell. The panel box itself, not to mention the mechanism within, could not be reached from within the cell. Other than this there was only the steepness, the side of the mountain, there on the right, rising up, and, on the left, below the ledge, the drop, forty or fifty feet, to the ledge and trail below. The rock ledge felt very hard, and granular, beneath my bare feet. It
I supposed, however, if I proved capable of sustaining a more rapid pace, that that would be expected of me. I cast a glace back over my shoulder at the jailer. He gestured ahead, and held the beast back, by the leash and collar.
I wept, hurrying up the trail, the beast at my heels, the jailer at its side.
There was suddenly, to my left, out from the ledge, a piercing scream, a great smiting sound, and, on my right, the cliff, as though flung there, twisting, a vast moving, wheeling shadow. A torrent of air threw me against the side of the cliff. I saw the fur on the beast blown as if by hurricanelike winds to its right, and the jailer, too, must brace himself not to be hurled to the side. I held the tunic in my mouth with both hands, crouching down. Then the gigantic bird had turned abruptly, wheeling about, and was making its way, it seemed to the very heights, the very pinnacles, lofty and cloud-obscured, of the citadel itself. The rider, now in the distance, moving swiftly, looking back, lifting his arm to the jailer, and the jailer, grinning, raised his whip in salute. Such men, it seemed, must have their jokes.
The jailer looked at me, and I leaped up, and continued my journey up the trail.
"The great voice of Agamemnon then rang out," said a Kur. "'Kill them, kill them all!'"
"'Fire!'" called out Lucullus, high captain to Agamemnon, who stood near Arcesilaus, amongst his many guards and jailers. "'Fire!'" cried Crassus, as well, high lieutenant to Agamemnon.
By now I was sure the investing forces of General Yamada were beginning to feel the straits of hunger. It is not only the prisoners of a siege confined in a holding, who may suffer such an ugly durance, but also their jailers, if no food is brought to them.
The food was of the finest in the holding, from the tables of the masters themselves. There was even a white ka-la-na. I was not permitted to sample the food and drink myself, and I refrained from doing so, even when Florian, or another, was not looking. It was not so much that Dorna might have called this act to the attention of her jailer, whoever he might be, as that I found satisfaction in my obedience. I wanted to obey. I was a slave. It pleased me, and fulfilled me, to obey.
"I have examined the bars," he said. "They could hold a dozen raging beasts."
"Are the jailers or warders human?" I asked.
"Unfortunately not," he said.
I had hoped that the Kurii might have humans about to attend to servile tasks, in particular, female slaves. Such, as I recalled, lovely pets, served Kurii in various lowly ways on the steel world I had visited, in particular, in grooming their masters, biting parasites from their fur, and such.
"Do jailers or wardens enter the cage?" I asked.
"Seldom," he said. "Food is thrust in narrow trays between the bars. Water is available in that depression in the floor to the right.
To the free woman, tutored in prescriptions and jailed by convention, the joys of submission are alien.