Leticia, At The Center Of The Storm
Leticia, the Marquise’s daughter, arrives to the dungeons of the Holy Office with a chip on her shoulder. She was forced into the monastery by her mother. “I’m the gift from my mother to our most holy church” she tells Agustinus, her hands tied above her head, her back exposed to the whip that doesn’t take long to crack on her skin.
Every comment by the monk is underlined by the sound of the whip crashing on Leticia, every response by the rebellious young woman is met by more lashes, until Agustinus stops the whipping and sends her away.
“I will get out of here alive, maybe broken up in pieces, but alive” is Leticia’s response to Martina, who, as she applies soothing oils to the welted skin, comments that the only way they’ll get out of that place is dead.
Leticia joins the others in the dungeon to watch her friend Julia receive her punishment. She teases the woman tied to the cross, receiving the lash on her naked back from Barbara, showing her a rusty nail and jokingly telling her “we could nail you to your cross“.
Leticia is called to the side of the monk and when she kneels in front of him, Agustinus lowers her garment to expose her breasts. “What are you doing … father?” she reacts to his action.
While Barbara gets busy lashing Lucrecia, for keeping her secret from the Monk, Leticia fights off Agustinus advances. “I’m not a weak man, a slave of the flesh, but I can let myself be seduced by the beauty of your skin” he tells her as he tries to reach her lips with his.
When Leticia’s rejection of Agustinus lands her once again at the post of woes, her is confidence and self assurance is crushed as the skin of her back is broken by the whip. She’s held against the whipping post by a metal collar on her neck, a short chain keeps her on her toes, her wrists chained behind her back.
Barbara is in front of her, facing the other side of the post, attached to the crossbar that held Julia before. Martina whips Barbara, while Lucrecia strikes Leticia.
After a long lashing, Barbara is taken down from her cross to be dragged to the rack and Leticia is turned around to face Lucrecia and her whip. The young rebellious woman realizes that what was meant to be simply atonement from one’s transgressions to the most holy of churches, was turning into full fledge torture where death was probably preferable to the painful inquisition torments to come.