Julia appeared at Mr. Thompson’s office door and said, “Got a minute?”

“Come in,” he replied, and she entered and sat.

“You asked whether you needed to buy an inventory slave or a receptionist. Roberta can handle either position, so I think that you should buy a receptionist. Do you still want a secretarial assistant? And what about the warehouse slaves?”

“I agree, we’ll put a receptionist on our shopping list. I think we can use a secretarial assistant, so add that to the list too. We might as well put the warehouse slaves on the list too, starting with three. Hold off on them for a while. How is the slave quarters expansion going? I hear them banging and crashing.”

“The walls are in, the electrical is mostly in, and the plumbing is underway. They think it can be done in a week.”

“Good. Go ahead and look for the first two on the list.”

“I’ll do that. You also wanted to talk to me about my status?”

John rose and went to shut his office door. After resuming his seat, he said, “Yes. I still haven’t thought out all the details. However, you are the head slave. Anything slave-related goes to you. You are in charge of getting slaves brought in, trained, and working. You are in charge of discipline. You can delegate to other slaves, and you have authority over them. I trust that you will be benevolent. You should pass the inventory work to Roberta. If she has time left over, we may give her other things to do. You will need to be available for various jobs that need to be done as they come up. You have people skills and business skills, even though they may untrained; I value them. You’ve done a lot of good work for me here. I am increasing your stipend. If you want to live outside the building, I’m open to it. Any questions so far?”

Julia wondered a little about how much of a raise she was getting, but didn’t worry about it. The crucible of slavery and her decision to escape her previous slave position through the meat market had burned all greed from her, along with many other things. “No. Thank you for the vote of confidence.”

“Of course. You inspire confidence. On to other things. Do you have any plans to exercise your freedom option?”

Julia hadn’t thought about it in quite some time. She rolled it over in her head, and said, “Not now. I am interested in the other thing you mentioned, about the trust ownership, and so is Rebecca.”

“I remember. I have a meeting tomorrow with my lawyer; he will explain what he’s come up with for Delia. I’ll ask him about a similar thing for you and Rebecca. I mentioned it to him before, so I’m sure he will have thoughts on it.”

“Thank you. I do have a question. We are getting new slaves, like Roberta. Are they going to get the same options or trusts we do?”

“No, not right away. I didn’t pay for you first two. They get paid for with corporate funds, so corporate accounting rules apply. I think I’ll put something in about getting a limited option after five years, and a more full one in ten. You and Rebecca are actually considered my slaves, leased to the company in order to get corporate asset status. My lawyer came up with that one. It will make a trust transfer a lot easier.”

“I see. I think Rebecca and I should not tell the other slaves about our different status.”

“Maybe not. You can explain it as privileges of the senior slaves if it comes out.”

They discussed minor details of the renovation and other topics for a while. John finally said, “I have a meeting in a few minutes. I have one other thing to talk about. At some point I may want to relocate you and Rebecca to living in my house, if we can trust one of the newer slaves to act as night house mother. It won’t be for a while, perhaps over a year, but I’ve begun to think of you two as family, albeit fuckable family. What do you think of that?”

Julia was surprised, but happy. She said, “That would be great. What would your wife say?”

“She likes you too. She will expect first dibs on sex. I may need wheelbarrow loads of Viagra. By the way, she’s nude in the house most of the time. You should be nude in the house also.”

“Sounds good to me. Do we stay in cells in the basement?”

He made a show of deep thought. “I had thought the old kid’s rooms, but that’s a great idea. No, it would be too far to go for sex.”

Julia rose and left, with a growing dampness in her crotch. She hoped Rebecca was back today, or that John was up for fun at noon.