Posted at 22:29 on 21 Oct 2011 by Pandora / Blake
A little while ago I got a message from Jacq. She said: "Did I tell you the realisation I had recently? I don't think I'm actually enjoying the being hit itself more than I used to, I think the thing that does it for me is the marks. I'm not certain that's what it is, but there is a reason I'm enjoying it more and I'm always sad when the marks fade, so..."
My first, irrational, reaction was dismay. She didn't enjoy the spankings themselves? I'm a feedback junkie: my pleasure as a sadist is directly fuelled by the enjoyment of my bottom. If Jacq wasn't into spankings per se, the idea of spanking her lost a lot of its thrill.
Then I read what she'd actually said: not that she didn't like being spanked, just that she didn't like the spanking itself more than she used to. I knew already that spanking wasn't her primary kink in the same way it is mine, but that it was a kink and she loved the power exchange. A third re-reading and it sunk in that - hey! She was enjoying it more than she used to! That's kind of awesome. So, right, clearly the thing to do was ensure that we gave her marks to remember next time we played.
Jacq and Tom spent last weekend here at D's place, and I luxuriated in having my three play partners together at once for the first time since my memorable birthday foursome. (I didn't blog about it because it didn't involve much spanking, but trust me, it was pretty memorable.) The fact that Jacq is getting involved with all three of us independently to one extent or another is one of the most magical things about my connection with her. This is how polyamory works best for me: when it's as joined-up as possible.
As well as chilling and just enjoying hanging out with the group, I wanted to take advantage of having everyone together to indulge in some play. We were pretty tired after a late night and neither of my men seemed about to initiate anything, but nonetheless I decided that someone was getting spanked this weekend, and enticed Jacq over my knee.
I bought this little governess paddle at the London Alternative Market to fill a gap in my toy collection, and because I liked the rich, old-world hue of the leather. I thought it would be a good warm-implement, atmospheric but not overly severe for shoots, and figured that while I was learning the knack of hand-spanking it would do no harm to have a hand-sized leather toy to fall back on.
I wanted to feel it as a bottom before using it as a top. When I played with Tom after getting back from the market, I brought it out and asked if he wanted to try it. He took one look, made dismissive "oh, it's one of those" noises, and told me that he had no need of such things and his hand would suffice. Yes, my Thomas can be a bit of a severity snob at times.
In the end, my friend Penny Docherty gave me a taste of it a few days later, confirming the impression that it was a useful warm-up implement with a reasonable range, but not scarily punishing. Reassured by the first-hand knowledge that I wasn't going to do more harm than I intended, I'd been looking forward to using it on Jacq.
It wasn't going to give her the marks she wanted, but that was okay; we could get to that later. Right now, I was spanking her because I wanted to, and because I hoped that it might inspire Tom and D to get involved. I started with my hand, relishing the sensation of skin on skin and enjoying how swiftly her bottom turned pink. She was lying over my knee on the sofa, so there wasn't any weight being put on my bad ankle, which was stretched out in front of me. Spanking her around my injury felt empowering and positive; reassurance that I didn't need to be physically perfect to be an effective top.
After checking that he wasn't intruding, Tom courteously offered advice as to my spanking technique, showing me a wrist flick which gave each smack more power without my elbow mashing into the back of the sofa. I really appreciated the respectful way he offered the advice as a co-top, rather than giving me instructions as when I'm submitting to him.
The simultaneous dynamic of topping Jacq while submitting to my doms is a strange and precious one. When I stop and think about it, the levels of subtlety are remarkable, but so far it's felt fairly intuitive to navigate.
After I introduced the new paddle, Jacq's natural stoicism started to let a few squeaks through. I continued at my own pace, safe in the knowledge that it wasn't more than she could take. When I took her knickers down, I enjoyed the line separating pink skin from white; but not as much as I enjoyed colouring the white half in.
As I'd hoped, after watching me and Jacq Tom was keen to get involved, and we were keen to let him. We moved through to the bedroom, and I asked D if he minded Tom using some of the toys he'd bought at LAM. (Full details of the new implements to come in a separate post, now I've been reminded of what they feel like!) D hadn't really been in the mood to play, but after sitting and watching awhile he soon got more involved. His interest might have been provoked by me and Jacq getting changed into more playful things: her in black cuban heel stockings with red seams, matching red lacy knickers and high heels, and me in white kneesocks with red tartan bows.
Jacq and I changed places on the bed as D showed Tom the new toys, and our bottoms gradually turned deeper shades of pink. Spanking Jacq and enjoying watching her get thrashed made me hungry for sensation, and somehow bolstered my courage and made me feel able to take more pain. The sadistic voyeur and the masochistic exhibitionist in me are strongly connected, and both have a powerful effect on my capacity for dominance and submission. I sat at the head of the bed with my legs stretched out in a V, resting my ankle, with Jacq between them with pillows under her hips and her head in my lap. I enjoyed the incongruity of the little-girl socks I was wearing as I cradled her and stroked her hair, eating up the sight of my beautiful men paint crimson stripes on her beautiful arse.
I stroked her back and her neck, held her still for them, cocooning her in my faith that she could take it, that she would enjoy taking it for us. If I didn't know that I could take the same - if I hadn't felt those same sensations myself so recently - my faith wouldn't have been as strong. But I knew that if I could take it, she could; if I'd enjoyed it, she would too.
I tried to make it easier for her; soothing her between strokes, telling her how brave she was. But I also devoured the sight of her whipping as hungrily and as empathically as if I was watching myself being whipped.
My own bottom was warmed up fairly thoroughly during the back-and-forth, although I admit the periods when I was watching are far clearer in my memory. At a certain point, Tom and D decided that it was time to step things up. I was the target of their attention, and when I saw that Tom meant to use the Big Black Stick (the largest cane in our collection - 12mm and about a metre long) I understood why. Just as watching Jacq had ignited my hunger for taking pain, Jacq needed to see me take this before being asked to do the same.
Tom passed D the next heaviest cane we own - the Master dragon cane with the carved wooden handle, denser than the BBS but not quite as thick or long. Tom was on my left, caning right handed, and D was on my right.
D can spank damn hard when he wants to, but he's not normally into severity for severity's sake. D thrives on reactions, regardless of the heaviness of the sensations that cause them; and he takes a sadistic pleasure in manipulating his sub so as to cause the most reaction with the least amount of impact. So when Tom laid on the first stroke and I realised that this double caning was going to be hard, I felt a moment of anxiety that D wasn't going to be into it.
Then D's stroke matched Tom's with surprising intensity, and the pain mingled my relief and pleasure that right now, D seemed to be just as interested in playing hard.
I was flying from the outset. I remember feeling very calm, counting off each stroke and taking a wild joy in being able to say "thankyou, sir" after each, addressing each of my doms in turn without changing my wording.
(I've just limped through to the next room to check my memory against D's. "I remember feeling calm. Did I seem calm?"
"Yeah," he nods, shrugging, "you seemed pretty chilled out about the whole thing. You squeaked when you were hit hard, but you weren't complaining or anything. Not like now, whinging all the time." The sarcastic bastard has a point. I'd take a high-impact double caning over a sprained ankle any day.)
At eighteen strokes, D dealt me a particularly hard, low one on the crease of my tender left thigh. I looked back at him, partly in disbelief, partly just wanting to check in with him and see how he was feeling. His face was inscrutable, and when he caught my eye he blew me a kiss, then looked away. The casual, dismissive affection of it was somehow deeply reassuring. He was doing his thing. I stopped worrying and dived back in to the sensations.
At twenty-four, I realised that I hadn't been given an end point. Luckily for me, I sneaked a peek at Tom at that moment and caught the hand signal he gave to D - twelve more. Perhaps I should have felt guilty for seeing when I shouldn't have, but I don't expect it escaped either of their notice. My doms are both perceptive chaps; they know their stuff. In the event, knowing these were the last twelve strokes erased any fear or panic that had started to build up, and allowed me to savour them. I immersed myself in the experience of being beaten as hard as they wanted to beat me; in the blissful harmony of being suspended between their two poles, drinking in the joy of being the center of both their attention at once.
Then it was Jacq's turn.
Glowing, sated, proud, I resumed my place at the head of the bed. I knew that given her relative inexperience with hard play they wouldn't give her the same number of strokes, and I think she knew it too; or else she trusts us, bless her. And again, having just taken the same myself I felt fully confident in guiding her through it. My own achievement bolstered my belief in her, and erased any anxiety I might have felt that she wouldn't be able to cope.
They gave her twelve, and they were every bit as hard as the ones I'd taken. She was incredibly brave. And when they'd finished, there was no doubt that she would have some marks to remember it by.
Afterwards there was cuddling, praise, fuss. I rubbed aloe into her bottom and admired the slabs of bruise rising on both her cheeks. And all four of us got distracted by other pursuits, of course. In fact, the rest of the weekend was one long loved-up, sexed-up party, with different couplings (and triplings, and...) dipping in and out of sex with a relaxation which I wish was a feature of society as a whole.
A micro-example: while Jacq and D went to the shop to buy mid-afternoon brunch ingredients the next day, Tom and I got up to no good (well, actually, it was very good) on the sofa. We heard the door open as I was over his knee; and hearing the distinctive smacking sounds, they discreetly retired to the bedroom and left us to it. Once we'd enjoyed each other, I went to retrieve my underwear from the bedroom - only to discover that they'd got distracted themselves. It was a deliciously permissive, open, intimate sort of vibe, and it lit me up for days.
(I apparently am re-gaining my tungsten bottom, so after the warmup my marks were nowhere near as impressive as Jacq's, even after that double caning. Still, photo evidence suggests that a fair few of those hard cane strokes landed on my thighs: )
But the highlight of the whole weekend, for me, was after Jacq's caning. I was still sitting at the head of the bed, cradling her in my arms. She was in a deeply submissive zone with bruises blooming on her bottom, not ready to engage with the real world yet but strongly connected to all three of us. D and Tom were to either side, reaching out protectively towards her and basking in toppy satisfaction.
D sat next to her on the bed, reached over and, one by one, carved each of our initials - his, Tom's and mine - in a diagonal on her back with his fingernail. The three of us looked at each other, at Jacq with mutual love, affection, and the pride of ownership. It was a breathtakingly beautiful moment, and one I will treasure for a long time to come.
Afterwards, Tom told me how proud he was of me - not only as a sub, but in how effortlessly I was able to switch between being their sub and the co-top dynamic, how intuitively I clicked into the power him and D were sharing. I hadn't really thought about it. But I was very, very glad to be able to share this experience with them, on so many levels. I'm glad neither of them are threatened or turned off by my switching; glad that each of them has so easily been able to go from including me in their conspiratorial toppy energy, to re-claiming the slight emotional distance they need to effectively dominate me. Looking back on it, it seems amazing that it was that straightforward. But not quite as amazing as the knowledge that the three of us share equal parts in our very own plaything.