His spread palm pressed between my shoulder blades, once again pushing me back over the pillow that I clutched and released, like a kitten pawing for milk. The pillow I buried my face in until the heat and lack of air forced me to lift my head and suck in another breath, both dizzying and replenishing. The pillow that cradled me as I twisted, tensed then relaxed, each blow of the cane testing my tolerance in increments.
He knows exactly how to keep me on the knife edge of yellow, not enough yet to break me, but more than enough to prevent me from relaxing into it comfortably. This time wasn’t about allowing me to softly drift away. This was what was needed now, a raw, primal dance.
In spite of my craving, I knew I was fighting it; eyes screwed shut beneath the soft flocking of the eye mask, teeth gritted, body as taut as a bow string.
He watched me closely as his aim stayed true, noting my hitches in breath, the long inhales and exhales as I tried to control it, tried to sink into it, the increasing pauses that betrayed my breath holding, the twist of my hips, the slight buckle of my knees upon each impact, my toes screwing into the carpet searching for respite. The sheen of sweat that broke across my back. My face nuzzling the pillow as my long red hair slid from shoulder to shoulder. How he loves my hair, he tells me it was the first thing he noticed about me when we met so many years ago. Still long, like when I was a girl.
He knew I was waging a war with myself. Such was my way in life. A paradox. Showing one side whilst nursing another. I was needing but resisting, knowing where he was taking me. And he was going to take me there, because he knew what was needed today.
He paused as he slid one hand around my throat, aware of my collar across his palm, feeling me automatically relax into his grip. Trust. I tilted my head into him. My safe space. Home.
“Are you going to break for me?”
I whimpered now, a slight nod.
His other hand snaked through my hair, his grip on it pulling my head upwards and backwards.
“I can’t hear you.”
I paused. The conflict of shame and relief momentarily gagging me. Mistake.
He leant closer, his breath at my ear now. His voice low and slow.
My lips pressed together. Futile.
He wrapped his fist tighter in my hair.
“Yes Sir…I’ll break,” I croaked, his grip on my throat anchoring me, “for you.”
He twisted my head, his lips brushing mine, his teeth tugging my bottom lip, devouring my breath on the first sob. “Good girl”.
It was done. Requirement. Permission. Admittance.
The cane lit up my already bruised arse as my core cracked open. Hands gripping the damp twisted cotton beneath me. I broke.
As the blows rained down, so did my tears. Steady, regular, the drum beat of the strikes accompanied the rhythm of my release. Heat. Pleasure. Need. He watched my back as it shook with the force of my sobbing, the expand of my inhale, then more sobbing. He stroked my back with his free hand, protecting me from my storm whilst his cane urged me on.
Animalistic. I let it out. Hurt. Grief. Trauma. Worthlessness. Guilt. Anger. The ugly putrid darkness that claws at me. And in the background the heat, the beat, the pleasure, the pain. More. More. More. Don’t stop.
I was safe, I am loved, I am his.
The final blow brought me to my knees with a cry. Pooling on the floor between his feet. He dropped his cane and cradled my face between his hands as my tears ran down his thumbs. He gently cleared them away as I smiled, my skies clearing.
“Can you stand?” He bore my weight, easing me to my feet as he enveloped me with his warmth. Anchoring me to the ground as I wobbled. A giggle escaping as I sunk into him.
“Thank you” I whispered as I felt myself fly. Free. Calm. Clear. Renewed.
He carefully turned me and nudged me forward. “We’re not done.”
I winced as I lay down, his fingers kneading my welts, delicious pain transforming again to pleasure under his hands as he rebuilt me. Putting me back together piece by piece. A sculptor. Transforming. Healing. Nurturing. Loving.
In Japan, ‘kintsugi’ is the art of repairing broken pottery with lacquer mixed with gold, silver, or platinum. The philosophy recognises and respects the history of the object and visibly incorporates the repair into the new piece instead of hiding it, creating something more beautiful than the original unblemished piece. It gifts new life, healing and rebirth to damaged objects by celebrating their flaws and history, finding value in the missing pieces and flooding the scars and imperfections with care.
And as I smiled, I knew I glowed. For him. Because of him.