The other weekend I visited Tom for what I expected would be a couple of days of cathartic play. I’d had the week from hell and had spent most of it in desperate need of some domination and soul-cleansing.
The way it worked out, I had a shoot all day on the Saturday, then I jumped on a train and Tom and I went straight out to a gig. With that sort of schedule I was either going to crash or stay hyper, and it turned out to be the latter. The music was outstanding, we had an amazing, high-energy night, and collapsed straight into bed. The next day I was eager to spend some time enjoying the sunshine I’d been missing all week (this was that blinding first UK week of summer; hopefully not our last!) so we headed to the park. A few hours dozing in the sun, reading and listening to Tom play guitar was the perfect antidote to my stressful week. I unwound, uncoiled.
Home, and we both wanted to play; but I discovered an contentedness where my tense need had been. The sunbeam had done its work, leaving me catlike and purring. I thought I might be able to chase sensations for their own sake, but when I asked Tom to spank me I just found myself gritting my teeth through it. I could take it, but I wasn’t having fun. I insisted we try again, thinking that I didn’t have to enjoy it at the time to enjoy the stress relief benefits, but the weekend and Tom’s company had already done their work; I wasn’t in need of stress relief any more.
In the end Tom overrode my stubborn insistence for what I thought I needed, and gave me what I actually needed instead: some straightforward, pleasure-seeking loving. As I purred over his body, satiated with the joy of giving him good sensations, I reflected that he’d been right to stop spanking me.
But stress relief isn’t the only reason we play. It’s a huge part of our connection and our sexualities, something we both miss when we’re apart. I felt it would be a shame to let time together pass by without indulging that side of ourselves. After a good night’s sleep and a quiet morning working on computers, I felt recharged and ready to try again, from a different angle this time. With two failed attempts already behind us I was a little nervous, so I framed my request obliquely: “I want to ask if there’s time for a caning before my train, but I’m worried that it won’t work again and I’ll have to leave on a disappointment.” Tom replied that he’d be very happy to cane me, but that it was up to me to decide. Would I react well this time? Was it worth the risk?
All I knew was that I’d be ridiculously disappointed to go home without it. Perhaps I no longer needed direct catharsis, perhaps I wasn’t craving the exact pain sensations, but I needed the satisfaction and fulfilment of having endured. I warned him I might yelp a bit, but that I’d try to be brave. He said that was all that mattered … and then he got out the heaviest 12mm dragon cane, and I felt a little faint. It was understood without needing to be said that this was going to be a cold caning, from which I’d assumed that he’d go for one of the medium-sized ones. But no.
Actually, he does know me rather well, and I’ve always found heavier, thicker canes easier to take than ultra-whippy ones. He gave me a dozen, initially. Bottom lifted over pillows and bared with my knickers around my thighs, I stretched out my arms and gripped the edge of the mattress. I concentrated on my breathing, and was relieved when I took the first stroke without an unseemly screech. I let out my breath in a controlled exhale, counted and thanked him as usual. Together, we moved through to twelve. The last few made me twist and hiss through my teeth, but for the most part I stayed on top of it and managed not to yelp.
It’s weird. Sometimes screeching and yelping is exactly what I need. And sometimes I need the reassurance of knowing I can control my reactions. The meditative focus on breath is very grounding, and the satisfaction of working through the pain and drama of a caning without losing control always enlarges me, makes me feel aware of my strength.
After twelve measured strokes, I felt that I could take more. And it wasn’t just the challenge, now; I wanted more. So I asked again, knowing as I did that Tom would step up the intensity. He didn’t disappoint.
The second dozen were harder, sharper, biting deep into the meat of my bottom. Several times, I involuntarily let go of my grip on the head of the bed. A couple of strokes made me rear up out of position, bracing myself with my arms, eyes screwed shut as I processed the intensity of sensation before I could even start to breathe again. (Later, I found out that he’d been aiming several in a row at the same spot, trying to fill in a gap in the tramlines). But each time, I exhaled, and inhaled, and delivered my count.
The last stroke is always the hardest, and by then, if a caning has been given right, a strange alchemy of emotion has transformed my pride to a different sort of security. I’ve groaned, and hissed, and shouted “ow” despite my best efforts. I’ve broken position and I’ve breathed hard through my nose like a horse after a race. Stroke by stroke, he has undone my resistance, and I’ve accepted him. There’s no need to pretend that it doesn’t hurt any more. At the same time, I know I’ve done well. His praise and my own judgement combine to affirm that I am strong enough to not only endure this, but to take it into myself, feed upon it and grow stronger. By the last stroke, neither of us is holding back. He imprints a carefully calibrated stripe of fire across my buttocks, and I let myself react without constraint.
Afterwards we were fizzing, connected, chatty. He walked me to the train station and I swivelled in my seat, smiling at my secret knowledge of the perfect set of stripes I was taking home.