The arrangements were simple.
She loved her husband. She had an open relationship with him. But she had an itch that needed to be scratched. The itch was S&M. She spent hours at a time discussing her desires, her interests, in chat rooms, on messenger with strangers and with friends.
I was one of them. Just another bloke who sat in chat rooms and made no secret of what he likes. It was easier that way. Sit around and wait for people who'd read my profile and understood my tastes to happen along.
She came along. Simple as that. I was chatting to a woman who may have been a man pretending to be a woman who desired a Gorean relationship, and I was bored. I'd made my views clear, but it was a quiet afternoon and there was nothing else going on. So when the stranger PM'd me and asked if my profile was real, I had no reason not to sit and listen.
Don't let people k** you. Listening is at the heart of what I do. Listening for the signs that might suggest someone is genuine, or fake, or fantasizing, or unlikely to comprehend the meaning of their desires.
So over time I listened. We'd bump into each other in chat rooms or on messenger, and we'd talk about sex, about what we knew, and what we'd do, and we talked about what we'd done before.
There's always a subtext to online chat. Is it real? Not is it real as in 'Are we in the same room' but is it real as in 'Is she really turned on? Is he or she faking it?' Don't ask me to explain why people do it - they're all individuals, when all's said and done. And sometimes, in chat and cyber play, there are people who just want to prove they exist by turning someone else on. It's not something that troubles me deeply, but you do wonder, if someone's telling you online that you turn them on, whether you might meet one day.
Kay and I didn't discuss this. We didn't need to really. She was more than keen enough to let me watch her strip on cam, and she masturbated freely. Except we didn't use the m word. She was wanking, or showing off, or frigging herself. Or doing as she was told, which was a phrase she particularly liked.
So there was no doubt about whether she was for real or not. No doubt about whether she was turned on or not. No doubt, judging by her range of toys and the way she showed them off, that she wasn't shy.
So the next step had a certain inevitability about it. We would meet, and play. Not that play was really the word. She wanted to experience punishment. So we arranged the scene precisely. The meeting would be at a cheap hotel, one of a chain, next to the A1. Her husband would be in the pub next door, waiting for her. She would be naked for punishment, her hands cuffed in front of her. We'd agreed the number and type of punishment blows, and the tools to be used. Six belt strokes on both cheeks, and three crop strokes on each cheek. We'd agreed she would bend with a pillow under her face so she could muffle her cries, but still be able to use her safe word if she wished.
We'd discussed all that, and arranged it, before we met for a vanilla, face to face meet. That's the wrong way round, as far as I'm concerned. Meets like this one are the reason why. You don't have to like people to be dom to their sub. So long as you both know the rules, and the scenario, you can hate each other afterwards.
That didn't work this time. We met in an Italian restaurant for lunch, and I liked her. She was passionate, and clever, and committed to the things she believed in, and three dimensional in a way lots of people aren't. She wanted a dom in her life because her husband wasn't dom, but she also didn't want a 24/7 S&M relationship because there were so many other things that mattered to her that also made demands on her time.
So we sat across a table and ate pasta and drank cheap wine and discovered we liked each other, and the old demon of arousal raised its head. As a dom, I wanted to beat her because I like beating people who enjoy it. But as a man I wanted to fuck her as well. It was something about her manner, the way she was curious about so much, and so thoughtful. I suppose it's part of the paradox of my life, that all S&M is sex but not all sex is S&M. So some times I have to work out which is which.
We got to the end of the lunch having talked very little about sex, but within fifteen minutes of parting my phone pinged. It was her. The message said, simply, 'Next Saturday is on.'
So it was down to me. To book the hotel room, to buy a new, clean belt, to shop for a suitable crop. Would you want second hand toys being used on you? I made the hotel booking, and I waited. I added a few things to the bag. Wet wipes. Witch hazel. Rope. Tubigrip to go between the rope and any sensitive skin. A thick webbing ratchet tie down from a car. Bottled water was in the fridge until the last minute.
Then the drive to the hotel. She was there, waiting. Husband was in the pub, watching through a window. I kissed her cheek, took her hand, and we walked to the hotel. Check in took two minutes.
In the room I made my rules clear. She stripped, fussing over her clothes as she removed them and placed them on the chair. She folded and refolded her skirt, separated her tights from her panties, straightened her bra straps, twisted her wedding ring on her finger. I did nothing to ease her nerves. She was there, and she wanted this to happen, so the nervousness must be part of what she wanted.
Once she was naked she bent forward. knees against the edge of the bed, and I cuffed her wrists. In my head the care I took to avoid touching her mattered. Never mind if she flinched, or moved, or gave the impression she was waiting for a caress. She rested on her forearms while I looped the webbing under the bed, using the ratchet to pull it tight, looping the rope around the strap so that I could use it to tie her in place via the cuffs. She understood the arrangements, kneeling on the bed, resting on her forearms, knees together. I adjusted the pillow so that it wasn't jammed under her face, but so that she could scream into it, as planned.
I waited, paused, wrapped the belt round my hand so that the buckle was secure in my grip, and tested the weight in my hand. Just an ordinary belt, £8.99 from Asda, an inch and a quarter wide. The same size and shape as the one holding my trousers up. Familiarity gave me confidence. The first stroke landed as planned. Parallel to the floor, evenly distributing the impact across each cheek. A pause to wait for any adverse reaction, then a second stroke. A third stroke, lower towards the crease between buttocks and thighs. A pause to check that the sob was just that, a sob, a signal that the beating was progressing reasonably. Then three more strokes, moving up her buttocks, judging the impact over the softer, more shallow flesh up towards her coccyx.
She dragged in breath, waited, as I rolled the belt and put it back in my bag. I took the crop out, and took the cotton shoe bag off its end. I hefted it and felt the wait, taking care to stay out of her line of sight, making sure there was no noise she might recognise. Ready, prepared, I stepped back, avoiding her foot, noting that it had moved apart from its partner, then brought the crop down on her right buttock in a smooth, measured arc. Leaning forward to repeat the blow on her other arc was a simple movement, like reaching for a ball that has pitched slightly wider outside off stump than you might expect. The second stroke on each cheek worked in the same way. The third blow on each cheek was delayed by my consciousness of my hard on, and I worked hard to be sure that my hand was being guided by the plan, our agreement, and not a suddenly clear desire to fuck her. In my head the purpose of the third blow was to draw gasps from her, to take her to the edge of tears. It worked. The gasp after the last stroke was ragged, urgent, and frightened.
The words weren't the ones I expected though. She wanted her phone. Her mobile, out of her handbag. It was lying on the top of her handbag, as if she'd put it there ready. I asked if she wanted her hands undone - she didn't care, didn't mind if I had to flip the phone open - it was a gold Dolce and Gabbana Motorola, very retro - and find her husband's number. So I did, and pressed the button to put it on speakerphone.
'It's me. Yes...'
He wanted to know if she was OK. She didn't want to talk much.
'Not now. Later. I want to stay. He's done it, and I want to stay another hour.'
In my mind the penny was dropping, albeit slowly.
'For fuck's sake Brian, I am safe and happy and I want to stay for another hour, whatever he wants.'
I slipped a hand between her legs, savouring the gasp in response to my finding her wetness. Then as she told him she'd be free in an hour, I started to strip.