Amy stretched as she got off the couch in the break room. She had only been working for three hours, yet she had successfully soothed no less than twenty uptight soldiers. The last two young men had been easy. Less than ten minutes on each of their laps and they had been fully and completely relieved.
"I have no idea how the hell she does it," she heard one of the other girls grumble as they elbowed past her to take their own break.
Like it was her fault she had a knack for what she did. To be perfectly honest she had no idea how she did it, either. She just seemed to sense what they needed, and she gave it to them. The quicker they were relieved, the quicker she was done. In her mind it worked out beautifully for everyone. Plus, she impressed her supervisors, which might get her off the main floor faster. That meant fewer customers and more time to herself. Something everyone in this place longed for.
"Valknut assholes headed in with lust in their eyes and credits in their pockets!"
The voice that chirped over the PA was entirely too cheerful to be announcing the imminent arrival of the biggest, baddest, roughest and toughest Marines along the jungle border of Camerico.
All movement inside the Soothing Bar came to an immediate and abrupt halt. They were called Valknuts not only for the Ancient Viking symbols tattooed on the sides of their necks, but also for the fact they hunted in packs of three. They hunted outlaws who were trying to sneak across the southernmost border into the Badlands, and those unspeakable creatures that the last of the world wars had left with hideous deformities. Or so it was rumored. Amy had never seen a mutant herself, nor did she know anyone who had. She just knew they were rumored to attempt to kidnap any and every fully human woman and child and drag them back to wherever the hell they lived. Caves, thatched huts, who the hell knew? They were said to be primitive in the extreme and deadlier than some of the mutant creatures who inhabited the surrounding jungle.
That was the reason the government had biologically engineered warriors from ancient times using DNA from bone fragments, seeing as how there was no such thing as a pure blood anything anywhere in the world anymore. The world's population had dropped so dramatically, people were encouraged to mate with any and everyone fully human, resulting in a world of people with a little bit of everything in every shade under the sun.
Except the Warrior Class. They didn't really work for the Camerico government. They reported exclusively to the WCGA -- the World Council of Governmental Affairs. They made sure no one country was stronger than another, that no one had exclusive rights to precious resources or anything else that had led to so many wars. Warriors were never born; they were created in labs, purest of the pure of the world's most notorious fighters that had ever lived. It was rumored warriors were merciless, ruthless, completely without conscience when it came to their primary objective -- protect the borders of habitable countries, as few and far between as they were. They were a law unto themselves, secretive and elusive. The last line of defense for a vulnerable human population.
Then there were women like her. Pleasure girls, or Soothers as the government liked to call them. They were specifically selected to work the exclusive clubs on the borders, though they rarely saw real-life warriors -- mostly just regular Camerico troops who worked on the border bases as support for the country's true defenders. Amy had been at the Soothing Bar for a full three months, and she'd never seen hide nor hair of the mythical men. Judging by the flurry of activity the announcement had caused, it must be a very big deal indeed. Half the women shook in their stilettos, while the other half rushed about, madly primping and puffing out their chests in the dangerously low-cut costumes they were given.
Amy looked down at the costume she wore, low-cut on the top, stopping just below her very ample breasts, and a tiny scrap of a skirt with nothing but a G-string underneath. Her riotous red curls fell freely down her back to her waist. The nails on her fingers and toes were carefully painted the exact shade of her hair. She figured she looked well enough. Her lightly tanned skin glowed with health and vitality, something not all the women here could claim. She'd never had a problem getting customers, though gyrating on their laps was still a little weird to her. She wasn't advanced enough to do more than give soldiers a glorified lap dance. True Soothers could use their entire bodies to massage the tension from their customers.
Amy had once thought this job was nothing less than stripping -- glorified strippers for the military -- until she was actually on the job. Was it stripping? Sort of, but she had seen the worry and tension radiating from her clients, and she personally had eased them, soothed them, helped them forget for just a little while they lived right on the edge of complete chaos.
"Amy! Quick, get your ass on the green line and smile!"
The Floor Matron's terse command took her by complete surprise. Amy stood dumbfounded, blinking at the woman built like one of those rusty old tanks she'd seen in a museum once as a child. It took someone pushing her from behind to get her feet moving. The green line? That was where the available women lined up for Warriors to choose from. She always lined up on yellow, symbolizing she was a novice to be used for junior enlisted.
She could literally feel the disbelief, disdain and downright hatred of many of the women on the main floor. She'd never really made friends since she'd been here, and this pretty much guaranteed she wouldn't. Still, she felt a little thrill of excitement. Here was her chance to do something that would change her life for the better. Funny, she'd had that same feeling when she first received notice she would be coming here. The feeling had never really disappeared, and now it was intensified a thousand times.