I had no idea when I woke up this morning that I would wind up in the hospital. Of course, I had been fighting this cold for a bit. It did seem to be a little worse than normal, but I went about my morning as usual despite the chills and nagging chest congestion and cough. The last thing I remember was walking in my front yard to cut some blooms from the perennial garden.
I so love fresh flowers all over the house. I thought I would cut a fresh bouquet to liven up the dining room table and then rest a bit. Apparently, my neighbor spotted me flat on my back on the lawn, shears still grasped in my hand and blossoms strewn about. He called 911, and here I am. I haven’t been able to keep my eyes open for long periods, nor taken in what anyone has actually told me yet.
“Ms. Simms? Can you hear me?” I give a slight nod. “I’m Akiyo, your nurse today. Do you understand where you are?” I nod again. “You’ve got a bacterial pneumonia which has caused pleurisy. So you’ve probably been having trouble coughing and clearing your lungs?”
“Yes.” It whispers out.
“This has caused your oxygen levels to drop. We’ve got you on an IV for dehydration, including some pretty intensive antibiotics because your blood tests have shown that you have an infection that is resistant to the usual antibiotics that we use to treat pneumonia.”
I am uninterested in the details of it all. There is only one thing I want to know. “How long do I have to stay here?”
Her sweet face shows a bit of apprehension. “I..I’m not quite sure. It all depends on if…I mean, how you respond to treatment.”
“In all my years, I didn’t see it coming like this,” I wheeze out as I rock my head a little in the pillow.
“What do you mean Ms. Simms?” Akiyo asks as she checks my IV.
I laugh weakly, then cough, “Taken out by a cold?”
“Don’t talk like that. Besides, it’s pneumonia, not a cold,” she softly scolds as she straightens the blankets and sticks an electric thermometer in my ear. “We don’t make light of bacterial pneumonia, nor the additional infections and complications that arise with it. We’re taking every measure possible to help you fight this.”
I think to myself slightly amused, ‘I notice you didn’t say that I was going to be fine.’ I close my eyes. It’s so difficult to breathe, even with the nasal cannula pumping in oxygen.
“Do you have anyone that you would like us to call to let them know that you’re here?”
I open my eyes to answer her, “No, dear, there’s no one.”
Sympathy flashes in her eyes for only a moment. “Okay,” she pats my leg through the covers, “I’ll be back in a little while. Just press the button if you need anything. Rest, Ms. Simms.”
I am so tired and just that small bit of conversation has taken its toll. It’s the next day before I wake again.
“How are you feeling today, Ms. Simms,” Akiyo questions during her first round with me on this new day.
“It’s Libby, dear,” A sly grin spreads across my face, “and I woke up, so I’d say pretty good. Besides, whatever you’re dripping into me doesn’t hurt either.”
Akiyo chuckles, “I see you’re going to be trouble, aren’t you?”
I wink at her, “How old are you, dear?”
“Twenty-five, Ms. Libby,” Akiyo answers.
“You are quite a beautiful lady, Akiyo,” and I truly mean that when I say it. The young woman is slight, delicate with porcelain skin. Her chocolate, almond shaped eyes are framed by long, thick lashes. Lush peach lips display perfect white teeth when she smiles. Her heart shaped face is framed by shining coffee brown bangs and fringe. The rest is pulled back into a perfectly groomed pony tail. Perhaps, it’s the fact that she is my caretaker at the moment, and giving me such glorious meds, but she looks so angelic.
My laugh is labored, followed by a cough. “You know, I wasn’t always this old gal that you see here. No, I was vibrant, even beautiful if I dare say so.” I stare at the blue veins protruding beneath the tissue thinness of the pale skin of my hands.
“I’m sure you were Ms. Libby,” Akiyo replies with a grin as she marks numbers on a board on the wall before coming back to listen to my chest with her stethoscope. “Deep breath in…again,” she continues the exam. “Since you’re unable to cough properly or to get up some of this fluid on your own, we’re going to have a respiratory therapist come in to administer some chest percussion and postural drainage angling.” Akiyo sees the uncertainty in my face. “Don’t worry. It’s just angling your body and a soft pounding with cupped hands that helps move the mucus up. Most patients really like the way it feels, almost like a massage. Plus, it will help alleviate some of the fluids in your lungs and make breathing a little easier.” She resumes her examination. She repositions my gown and covers me with blankets.
“Do you have a boyfriend, husband, Akiyo?”
She grins, “No I don’t.”
It occurs to me that maybe I should be more politically correct in my good natured prying, “Oh, girlfriend then?”
She gives the cutest giggle, “No, not one of those either. I’m very much single, Ms. Libby. This job keeps me busy, and I don’t get to socialize very much.”
“That’s a shame. You’re so young and pretty. You should be out enjoying yourself with a boyfriend, girlfriend, one of each even, not working yourself to death. There’s an expression: ‘youth is wasted on the young,’ don’t let that happen to you.”
She just smiles that angelic smile and shrugs before telling me that the therapist will be in soon and to buzz if I need anything.
I spend much of my time sleeping in a medicated haze. The super antibiotics not helping with the ill feelings. In truth, I don’t seem to be feeling much better. I believe I have slept through a day or perhaps two the next time I recognize that Akiyo is in the room.
As she injects another medication into my IV, Akiyo enquires, “May I ask you something, Ms. Libby?”
“Of course, and Akiyo, please just call me Libby.”
“I happened to notice that you have a small tattoo on your hip, and…”
I interrupt her with a slight chuckle, “Oh that? That’s a long story.”
“Well, I’m always here,” she laughs, “and it seems we’re going to be spending some time together.”
“True,” I think back to that moment of being marked with the ink, “and it is a good story,” I arch one brow at Akiyo.
“I knew you were a feisty one, Libby. Go ahead and rest, and we’ll talk when I come back. Just buzz if you need anything.”
The cocktail Akiyo administered takes hold, and once again I drift off.
It seems my times of true lucidity are few and far between this first week. It’s much like being in a fog, my brain addled at times to what’s really taking place and remembering where I’m at, struggling for air most of the time. There are moments that I wonder if I will even wake up. I recall moments of people in and out of the room. Automatically responding to requests, being just awake enough to help move myself when they need to examine or tend to me. However, when Akiyo enters, I respond to her. There is something about her that I’m drawn to. It has been a long time since I’ve had a friend to share confidences with. Maybe it’s because I never had children of my own, or even nieces or nephews. Maybe it’s because there is something about her that reminds me of myself when I was young and innocent, but there is a certain impish gleam beneath. I cannot pinpoint what it is exactly, but I want to share things with her, memories, milestones.
“Akiyo, I told you that I’d share with you the story of my tattoo, didn’t I?”
“Only if you feel comfortable doing so. I didn’t mean to pry.” However, there is no mistaking the curiosity and the twinkle in her eyes when she asks, “Libby, may I ask you something, and I hope I’m not being too forward? I happened to look up the symbol on your hip. I’ve found it is the ‘Nŭ’ symbol, and I asked a relative if I had read the kanji correctly. Female slave?” Akiyo whispers the last part as she is checking my incision sites.
“Yes, that’s true,” I respond wearily, “only for me it does not so much mean literal slave. You see, Akiyo, I am a submissive.” Her warm eyes open wide as her head pops to the side to meet my gaze. “I would say was, but I still consider myself one, though I have no Dom per se…who would be, in effect, my Master.”
Akiyo straightens and blurts out in a high pitched whisper, “Like, you like to be tied up and whipped?!”
A wheezy hoot escapes me, “At times, yes.” I’m sure my grin and eyes brandish a devilish glow, “But there’s much more to it than that.”
“Why?…how?” the poor girl looks thunderstruck, yet clearly fascinated. I can see the thoughts written on her face. I instinctively know that she’s envisioning all of those new-fangled novels that are such the rage right now. Oh, this gem of a girl uplifts my spirits in such a refreshing way. It amuses me, and fosters an urge to explain further my tale, my journey to her.
“It was most definitely a slow evolution to my realization of who I actually was. Now as for how I got the tattoo, that’s a long story as I said, and I believe for me to explain the marking and its meaning that I should start where all stories should, the very beginning.
For this tale, that would be 1967. I was nineteen and enamored with what I guess you would call my first love. He was twenty years old, tall, and handsome. Paul Osborne was his name. I was so young, so naïve, and just open for experiences and adventures, curious, and he was just the man to teach me. I had a naturally bohemian spirit, and of course, the sixties were the perfect time to test that.” Shutting my lids, I am transported back in time. I can see myself again, long tan hair, highlighted from hours spent outside in the sun. The straight fringe falling just below my brows. Large expressive eyes, pert nose, perfectly shaped lips, constantly smiling.
“I remember that one day perfectly. He picked wild flowers and placed them in my hair as we lay on a blanket under a tree listening to the radio, kissing, petting. It all seems so innocent when I think back on it now. It was broad daylight, but we felt we were hidden enough from anyone who may wander through that part of the park. In a way, I don’t think we cared. We were too far gone by this point. His hand was beneath my yellow mini dress, much as he had done many times before, slipping beneath my undergarments, teasing me, which I enjoyed very much,” I sigh a moment remembering.
“Then, though, he did something that shocked me. Now, you have to understand, it was a different time then. I had only just discovered the excitement of having a tongue enter the lips on my face. So when he delved between my legs to kiss those lips, I loudly objected and tried to stop him. I thought the act was something vile, you see, but he protested that it was a joy to him as he would prove it would be a joy to me,” I wink at Akiyo, and she instantly flushes. “Once his lips touched those,” I give a tilt of my head indicating downward, “I understood that he was indeed right. I had never experienced any sensation like that before. Even though I was still apprehensive of the act, as he continued the kiss, I begged him not to stop. His wicked tongue didn’t either not until I was screaming with my first ever climax.”
I notice Akiyo has stopped her duties and is leaning against the window listening intently.
“You see, I didn’t know at the time, but he was priming me for what was to come, which was so much more. When he climbed back up my body, I spurred his attempts to then kiss me as I was unsure that I wanted to taste the residue of my own arousal. So do you know what he did then?”
Akiyo shakes her head, “No, what?” Her tone is one of pure inquisitiveness.
“He dipped his finger back down, and brought it up to my face, shining with myself upon it. He pressed that finger to my lips and told me to lick it, and I did. He then, slipped it further in and onto my tongue and simply whispered, ‘Suck.’ Let me tell you, it was such a taboo task to even think of, much less act upon. There was a gentle sternness to his command which made me want to obey. Actually performing the task he asked reawakened the stirrings below. It was…erotic. Then when his mouth took mine, with my own taste still upon his, all I knew was that I wanted to feel everything all, all over again.”
Akiyo has her tablet covering her face from her nose down.
“Would you like me to stop, dear? Have I offended you? I’m terribly sorry if,” but I am interrupted.
Akiyo cuts in, “No, no, Libby. I’m sorry. I…No, you haven’t offended me. Please continue,” the poor girl’s neck and portion of her chest that is visible above the scrub top is fire engine red.
“As I mentioned, we had spent much time in innocent play with each other. I had, however, never actually seen or touched Paul, nor anyone before him. I fumbled with his jeans, the hard ridge of his erection straining against his zipper. He helped me in my struggle, pushing his jeans down and footing them off to the ground, and I was held in fascination of the sight of his stiff, thick cock presented before me. Apprehensively, I held my hand just an inch away from it, stroking the air, almost afraid to really touch him. When my fingers made contact with his skin, the thing twitched. I was startled when seeing the beast had a life of its own. I knew at that second, that I would be a slave to this entity that was attached to men. I can honestly say, thinking back over the years of the many that I have since seen, that Paul was in fact well endowed.”
I curl both of my hands and place them one on top of the other, pausing to spread where my fingers on each hand touch apart slightly. I nod toward my imaginary clasped shaft indicating what I remembered to be its size in length and girth, then smile. “Yes, I studied his member for a while, the thought crossing my mind about its size and how that thing would actually fit inside of me. Paul allowed me to stroke and trace his shaft and head, my face inches away from this rock hard rod. I was mesmerized by the velvety softness of his skin there and the heat of the flesh. Being emboldened by his slight groan from my touches, I cupped his, um, package below, enthralled by how they rolled about inside the skin. Hesitant, I gently pulled at them, squeezing softly at the same time. Then I went back to his entrancing shaft. There were thick veins protruding from the base to the tip of his organ, and I swear that I stared so intensely that I could see them pulsating. Hypnotized by that, I used the tip of my tongue to try and trace the lines.” I shrug. “I didn’t get very far. Paul actually growled, and grabbed me beneath the arms, dragging me up his body, flipping me on my back so that I was pinned beneath him.”
When I close my eyes, I am right there again. “I did want more. Oh, yes, he sensed it too, what I was yearning for. He knew exactly what he was doing, perfectly. Once again, he took my mouth. As the kiss became more passionate, his hand traveled back down working me into a frenzy, in and out.
Lost in those unfamiliar, yet unexplainably magnificent feelings, he took me, right there on that blanket in a swift, plunging stroke.” I open my eyes, thinking back before I speak. “You know, I don’t actually recall the pain that took place, but I know it happened because I remember him becoming very still and gently kissing my lips, cheeks, chin, and forehead. Now, well now, I only recall the exquisite pleasure when he began to move, rocking his hips against mine.” I bring my hand to my lips recalling the feeling of his lips against mine, his body pressing into mine. My smile is broad, and little butterflies tingle my stomach at the memory. “You see I have heard horror stories from ladies about their first time and how painful it was causing them to shy away from so much and not enjoy sex. Not me, he was a very considerate lover who made my first time,” sigh, “unforgettable. I discovered that I enjoyed making love very much, and he was equally willing to help me start exploring more than I thought was possible in the ways of carnal pleasure. I was an eager student. I am forever thankful to him, for he was the beginning of me seeing past what we called ‘hang ups’ back then on sexual taboos. Even though, one may find it silly now, just those simple acts surrounding his taking my virginity, were major stepping stones to finding what I would eventually seek out and enjoy, so far beyond the oral pleasures.”
“Now, remember the part when I told you about Paul asking me to suck his finger? There was something in his tone, his command when he told me to take his finger. It was so erotic to me, being told to perform, especially an act that was so forbidden. A part of me simply melted when he did that, and there was a feeling of indescribable pride knowing that I had pleased him when his finger was in my mouth watching the smile spread across his face. I wasn’t sure why I felt that way. I just knew it sparked a desire inside of me for more, however, I did not know what exactly that ‘more’ was. We ended a few months later as most young loves and lusts often do. It was the height of the sexual revolution anyway, so needless to say, a relationship was not really on my mind at the time. I will tell you that I was instinctively attracted to very strong men, not necessarily in the physical sense, mind you.” I put a finger to my lips in thought for a moment. “It is very hard to describe what they emanated exactly. The men that I was drawn to had a certain commanding presence about them, as if they were always in control, in charge of situations, themselves, and others.”
Akiyo is silent for what seems like forever. A round of wracking coughs begins causing pain in my chest. Akiyo is by my side with a cup of water and patting my back to help. When the series of hacking ceases, I sink into the pillow.
Akiyo asks, “Shall we continue later, Libby? You will become overly tired and completely drained if we don’t pace you.”
I hope things look up soon. I have been sleeping most of the time. A few days ago after another round of chest x-rays, the doctors discovered that an abscess in one of my lungs had developed which was causing me to worsen.
I have been kept somewhat comfortable on intravenous pain medications after the surgical procedure to rid the area of fluid. They tell me that I will have to stay even longer, as now my condition is graver than a standard ‘elderly patient with pneumonia.’ They will not give me a definitive prognosis of recovery either. They have added and changed my medications again. They tell me it is to try and fight the infections. I feel disheartened, despairing at times. I feel the need to talk, pass along my story since I have no legacy, no family to remember me.
As usual when Akiyo comes to attend to me, I become clear-headed for short periods. She always opens with the usual questions, which I am sure she asks all of her patients. Somehow though, I feel she is genuinely and especially concerned when she inquires about my state and pain. When she begins conversation, and asks more personal, intimate questions, I don’t hesitate to answer. I feel a connection with her. Even during this relatively short hospital stay, I am coming to view her as a true friend.
“Why is it that there are short times that I feel better and other times, as though I have one foot in the grave?”
“It’s completely normal. You seem to be having more moments where you feel up to talking, which is a better sign,” Akiyo fluffs my pillow and raises the bed some.
“Better?” I sigh a laugh, “If you say so.”
“Do you feel up for continuing our talk, Libby?” her voice is eager. Akiyo pulls a chair from the wall in the room and sits next to the bed.
“Well, you’ve never gotten comfortable before,” I am amused.
“You’re still awake, and my shift technically ended fifteen minutes ago. I thought I’d stay and visit for a while. That is if you don’t mind.”
“Oh, I’d love that!” She is always such a pleasure, to the point of becoming an addiction of sorts. Truth be told, I’ve been enjoying sharing my life story. I have never gotten to share it with anyone else before.
“As I recall, I was telling you about the men that I began dating, men of strong will and desire. However, I had not found what I was seeking until one gentleman I encountered could in point of fact sense it in me. He told me that there was a specialness to me that he would bring out. I had no clue what he meant. I just knew that I was inexplicably drawn to him. A moth to a flame, as they say. The tone of his voice when he spoke to me, instructed things of me, commanded me, I was putty in his hands. It gave me great pleasure to please him in the bedroom. There were small directives at first. I believe it began with him clasping my wrists above my head the first time we had sex. Then, he told me that I had to keep my hands clasped behind my back when he entered the bedroom. So, if I were in there and standing and he would walk in, I’d automatically clasp my hands behind my back until he told me to come to him.” I lift a shoulder, “As I said, seemingly simple things. Then, though, the first time he smacked my rear when we were having sex was such a shock,” I lean over a bit to face Akiyo, “and I loved it.” I notice Akiyo doesn’t blush nearly as much anymore. “It was all very subtle, but still at that time, I think it was around seventy or seventy-one, I had never heard of other people doing these things in the bedroom. Gradually, he instructed me on what he expected of me and how I was to conduct myself in his bedroom. There were rules that I had to follow. To this point, punishments were not given yet. He was easing me into my role as a submissive. I knew I wanted more though, more than what we had done.”
Akiyo interrupts, “I don’t quite understand. You enjoy being bossed around, controlled and told what to do?”
“It’s a bit hard to explain, but no, not in all things. I enjoyed having my free will and autonomy in all other aspects of my life. Except one. For me, it’s a turn on in the bedroom, so to speak. There is an innate desire in me to completely turn off my mind and let the other person take full control of the situation, and of me. It excites me to somewhat let them do what they will with me, never knowing what they have planned, whether it will be mental or physical play, orgasms caused from more than just the actual act of sexual intercourse, mixing pleasure with a bit of pain, the surprise of thinking it will just be an evening of normal fun sex or switching into Dominant/submissive mode.”
I can see Akiyo trying to comprehend and absorb what I have just said. When she nods her head, I decide to continue.
“One day, I was looking in one of the nightstands, for goodness knows what, when I came across a stack of girly magazines.”
Akiyo shrugs at me and jokingly says, “Some things never change, except now it would be his browser history.”
I laugh, “True enough. You would think it was no big deal, but these were not run-of-the-mill nudie girls. These were filled with fetish pictures, bondage photos, whipping photos. You may even be familiar with some.”
Akiyo’s eyes grow as wide as saucers, and she blushes.
I am smiling, “He had some old magazines containing pictures of Bettie Page, her bondage series. They’ve become so mainstream, perhaps you’ve seen them.”
“Oh, oh, yes, I know her, the pinup with the black hair? Some of my friends have her on T-shirts and what-not. Out of curiosity I looked and found photos of her with whips and things,” Akiyo relaxes.
“Yes, she had a series of photos and films that were underground back in the fifties. They’ve held up to time,” I laugh. “Anyway, this gentleman caught me looking at these pictures, and he asked me very gently what I thought of them…would I like to try any of it?
He sat on the bed with me as I flipped through pages of women in corsetry, bound, gagged, being spanked, paddled, eyes covered, strung up…I remember becoming very excited looking at these images. I told him that I did indeed want to do these things. As we sat together with me pointing out scenes that fascinated me, it was evident that he was aroused too.” I place my hand toward my lap and raise two fingers in the air, my brows lifting for emphasis. Akiyo giggles.
“We did not do anything unusually kinky that day. We did, however, discuss options and parameters because though I was excited to try these things, and highly aroused at the thought of being the woman in those scenes, I was a little apprehensive. I wasn’t sure if I was ready to go as far as some of the photos depicted. I explained my nervousness to him, and he assured me playfully that he would not string me up from the ceiling and give me fifty lashes with a whip,” I smile and wink, “the first time. He had a way of easing my worries. Then, I just waited, on edge of when anything would happen.”
It wasn’t until a week later that I had entered his apartment and did not see him in the living area. He had heard me enter though, and called me to him in the bedroom. When I walked through that door, I knew it was time. He was standing with his feet shoulder width apart, arms folded across his chest, eyes smoldering, and a stern expression that I’d never seen before. I immediately dropped my handbag to the floor and assumed the position he expected, and that we’d talked about.
He remained motionless, and calm, ‘Undress.’
I slipped off my floral printed maxi dress and let it fall to the floor. I stood there nude, slightly trembling, my hands behind my back waiting for further commands. He circled me like a predator about to pounce on its prey.” I feel the chills I experienced in that moment, so many years earlier. Reliving it in my mind evoking the same natural reaction from my body itself. “He then told me, ‘On the bed, lie down,’ and I did. He pulled out lengths of rope from under his bed and tied me spread eagle to the railings of his headboard and footboard! He stood at the foot of the bed staring at his handy work, me on display, open for his scrutiny. I had a slight moment of panic and humiliation, but only for a fleeting second. As he stood staring between my open legs, my skin began to heat. Goosebumps formed all over my skin. My nipples hardened as if reaching out toward him.
You see, he was not simply staring for the sake of my body, he was also checking for unmistakable signals that I was stimulated,” a chuckle comes forth, “and when my juices began to trickle, and my scent rose up, we both knew I most definitely was.”
I absentmindedly rub my wrists.
“The rope was soft but still abrasive. The sensation a strange mix of discomfort and bliss. He came to the side of me and from a drawer in his nightstand pulled out a wooden twelve inch ruler, which were very common items leftover from school days, and a large feather. He placed both items on my belly.
First he picked up the feather and lightly glided it up my sides, stopping at my breast to swirl and swirl it over my aching nipple.”
“That sounds hot,” Akiyo murmurs. Her arms are crossed and she is chewing on her lip.
“Yes, yes, it was hot. If goosebumps could grow on top of goosebumps, mine were. He worked the feather down the center of my body to where I was open wide, stopping just before that little hidden button, and placed the feather back on my stomach. The ruler was used in its place. The rough corner tracing my ribs, the curve beneath my breast, up and over the pointed tip. I remember closing my eyes and relishing the delicate touch of such an object. He took advantage of my distraction and struck my sensitive nipple with the flat side of the ruler. I screeched and tugged to protect my stinging skin, but the ropes held me captive. I breathed in heavy gasps, as the stinging subsided to a burn and pulsing ache. That hot ache made my insides tingle. I became calm and waited in anticipation for the next strike. This time when he smacked the other breast, I rode the wave of sensations up and down, enjoying the decadence of it. Of course, I still gasped whenever the thwack sounded and landed, but each time, the temperature between my legs rose, that heightened sensation of wanting to be touched, and aching for release.
He did not relent so easily though. He wielded that ruler on my thighs, back to my breasts, even against my unprotected womanhood. When he delivered the blow to my hidden jewel, well, I almost came right on the spot. I was moaning loudly, begging him, ‘Please, please, please.’ Not once did stop even fall from my lips, but he did and teased me with that feather again, caressing all of the spots that ruler had marked.
I was writhing, trapped, but not from the pain. You see, I was wanting so badly.” One corner of my mouth lifts, “Horny. He knew it too. He did not even remove his clothing, only undid his slacks. He pulled out his hard cock and thrust into me. It was not sweet and gentle. It was hard, primal. He fucked me, and claimed me.
I was his for a while before we drifted apart. I needed more than what he could give me. We had different desires at that point, yet I was still a bit heartbroken, in some ways. He was the first man who understood my necessities and cravings. But in the end, he wasn’t the right one, and we moved on.”
A shrill noise interrupts me. “I’m sorry, Libby. If they are buzzing for me it must mean that someone didn’t show up for a shift and they know I’m still here. Now do you see why I have no social life? If you’re still awake later, we’ll pick up right where we left off, okay?”
I wave with one hand for her to go. “I know the drill. I’ll buzz if I need anything,” I tease her. It is not very long after she disappears that the deep pharmaceutical slumber envelopes me once more.
My tests keep coming back with slight improvements. The doctors and nurses tell me that’s a good sign. If things keep improving, it’s possible that I could be discharged in the next two to three weeks. It’s the antibiotic resistant infection that still needs to be monitored, as the infection had previously also entered the blood stream. However, they say that I am responding to all treatments very well.
Akiyo’s day off, but she came to visit. She’s such a sweet girl. Today she has brought a bright bouquet of flowers. I think she feels a little badly that I have had no visitors.
Akiyo makes herself comfortable in the empty chair completely armed with a soda and bag of candy ready for more of my tale. “You know Libby, you are amazing. It’s like you’ve led this completely secret and separate life. I would have never guessed that you were this wild woman. I mean, you look so poised and classy. Who knew that underneath you were so sinful?” Akiyo giggles.
“Poised and classy? Is that your way of saying that you can never believe that this old lady used to be young and kinky?” I laugh along with her.
“No! and yes,” Akiyo is still laughing. “But Libby, you know, you’re still pretty. You are one of those ladies who hold that beauty even as they grow older.” I let a little ‘ha’ loose. “Libby, I look forward to hearing you every day because you are truly like no woman I have ever met. Your life, it’s like a fiction book or movie or something. So, tell me what happened next? I’m dying to know.”
“I spent the rest of the seventies, I suppose you can say, being trained. I moved within circles where the lifestyle was common, even being taken to homes or establishments to learn, watch, talk, mingle, being introduced and interviewed by potential Doms. You have to remember at that time there was no internet, no specialized websites for alternative lifestyles. BDSM was called SM and very much considered a perversion, so interactions had to be developed and found underground, of sorts. It was a chain of knowing people who knew people. Being invited to gatherings in homes or back rooms of clubs. You lived the lifestyle secretly.
With each man or woman…”
Akiyo cuts me off, “Woman?”
“Well, yes, Dominants come in both sexes, as do subs. A woman can be just as assertive and desire a relationship with a sub as much as any male Dom. I had experiences with both, and with each came a greater expanding of my knowledge, and desires, as every new one would push my limits a little further. But it seemed as though I never found my match.
At times, we just grew bored of each other. Some did not want to go further in my exploration. Some wanted to go drastically beyond what I imagined that I wanted or could want. Then, there were those that I enjoyed all of the sexual play with, but outside the bedroom we just did not enjoy each other’s company in normal circumstances.
You see, this type of relationship requires so much more than a normal connection. A bond between a Dom and his sub goes even further than just love. The sub gives more than romantic love of herself. She gives all of her being to her partner. She allows him to have her mind, body and even soul, and there is an absolute trust between them. There has to be.
It was the very end of the seventies when I began to notice Jimi. One could not ignore his presence. He was extremely attractive, movie star worthy. To me he looked like Warren Beatty, simply gorgeous.
I had heard whisperings of him, a very strict and demanding Master. He had never met any sub that he wanted to keep for very long. None withstood his tests over time. Needless to say, the unattainability of him made him even more desirable to me and other girls.
At the time, I was unclaimed. I was curious about him, began to wonder what exactly he required. I knew that he had women throwing themselves at him all the time, in the normal world and the subversive. I believe it turned out to be the fact that I did not flaunt myself, and availability, in front of him when he was around that was eventually what led him to me.
I would stay in the background, subtly observing at events. If by chance we made eye contact, I would lower my gaze. I was quiet, only speaking when I was spoken to by other Doms. I chose to begin sitting almost hidden in the corners, not only to avoid the attention of those seeking a girl, but to also learn about Jimi. I watched his gestures, his face, his body.
He was very much unlike anyone that I had met. He was very stoic and aloof. I found he did not smile. He was dismissive of those who would present themselves to him standing with a lowered head or even kneel before him. He was very hard to read indeed. I was not sure why I continued, or even that I would ever try to engage him. And so I sat, watching, waiting, for months.”
“For months? You hung out where he was without ever doing anything?”
I laugh a little, “Yes I did. Sounds silly doesn’t it? It wasn’t like I was out every night. On weekends, I would attend gatherings and hoped that he may make an appearance. It had become a pursuit of patience for me, and a challenge. A challenge to see if I could attract one of the most wanted Doms in town. I don’t think that I had thought much past that point really.
Then one evening, I was ready to admit defeat. I was walking to my car to go home when he stepped out in front of me and spoke two words, ‘Your name?’ I was stunned into silence momentarily and whispered, ‘Libby.’ He gave a curt nod, turned and walked away.”
“That’s it? Nothing else, he just left?” Akiyo is shocked. I nod, and grin as she continues to snack on a bag of candies.
“That was it. He progressed at a snail’s pace with anymore interaction. I didn’t know what to think. But eventually, about a year later, he said that he wished a trial period with me. I agreed.
He was unlike any other Dom that I had been with. There was very little if any personal conversation. To begin with we spent time just discussing my limits and boundaries. Thinking back, it was all very clinical, purely exchanges of information. Once he decided that we could move to the physical aspects, we never did spend the night together.
Most often, my phone would ring close to the same time every time. He would give me instructions. I would leave my door unlocked and wait for him however I was ordered. Afterwards, I was left alone. He was never an affectionate man. In my mind, I thought this was all another way to push my limits, become an even better submissive.
Then, he did something that he had never done. He began to take me to gatherings, on his arm. I was displayed as his. This was a big deal as he had never claimed a sub publically before. I have to admit, it gave me great pride.
In eighty-four, he presented me with a task that was different from any proposed to me before then. He wished to mark me.”
Akiyo’s eyes pop, and she claps her hands, “The tattoo?!”
I sigh, “Yes, the tattoo. Taboo. Besides the fact that women simply didn’t get tattooed, there were many areas that women were not even allowed in tattoo shops. That is why Jimi had an acquaintance do it, but not in the way that you think.” I have to shake my head and inwardly snicker. “I guess you’d call it a jailhouse tattoo because the man used a needle with thread wrapped around it and a little cup of India ink. He poked and poked with the needle, little dots making the lines. It was a painstaking process. One I actually didn’t mind.”
“Why’d you let him do it, Libby?”
“I wanted to continue to be a perfect submissive. This was another confirmation that I was true in my desires to serve. I suppose that I passed the test because he proposed to me that night.”
“We got engaged, yes, but our arrangement remained the same.”
“You said yes, but…why?”
“Well, I had never had a relationship quite like that one. I thought that I was being a good sub, besides, I had never steadily seen one person for such a long period, much less years. I believed it was the logical next step.”
“You say, logical, not love…You married him? Tell me, what happened?”
“Don’t jump the gun, Akiyo,” I cannot help but laugh. It’s somewhat like I am a one woman play, and Akiyo is the excited, interactive audience.
“As I said, our arrangement was still pretty close to as it had been, except we began venturing out in our play, so to say. He arranged what would be my first group scene. I had never actually been involved in a group adventure, been a spectator, yes, but to actually be part of one, no. I was terrified and eager.
There were to be six of us including a female Domme, her female sub, and two male Doms who were free. I was made aware of some of the rules ahead of time. I was allowed to service any of them, and I could be used by everyone however they chose, with the exception of my limits which all were given beforehand as well.
The location, well, it was a swanky nightclub. Though Studio 54 had closed years before, the spirit of excess and debauchery was still alive and well. We were in a private room with private, and discreet, staff to serve our needs. As does now, money talks in all situations. Besides, I don’t think they minded as they had a free show,” I giggle.
The other girl and I stood there nude in the corners of the smoky room. We each had our hands cuffed in black leather with a fine chain between the wrists. Our heads were directed down as our other two guests arrived, so I did not get a good look at them. The others talked, socialized as though it were any other intimate get together. Jimi approached me first and instructed me to go beside a black leather chair and get on all fours. The other girl was instructed to do the same near another chair. We were to be used as tables, footrests, whatever useful object that anyone required us to be.
In my periphery, I could see Jimi and the female Domme doing lines of cocaine from her own sub’s rear and lower back. Every now and then, the woman would place one of her heeled feet on to the girls back and grind down. I could tell by the way the girl swayed her back under the pressure of the point. The other two males were standing by the bar smoking and talking. It’s strange but being ignored or not used by anyone upset me.”
“What good was I if I was not serving a purpose, a Master, so to say? And maybe, just maybe, I was a little jealous, especially when one of the other Sirs moved over to her as well.” I place a finger to my lips in thought and look out the window at the blue skies. “I was there on my hands and knees staring at the carpet trying to ignore the scene that was happening right across from me. You see, they were progressing, the four of them. The man was sitting in the chair, the girl, um, servicing him as she was bent forward. Jimi was administering smacks to her bare bottom and thighs. The woman, Domme, was engaged with the man in the chair, passionately kissing as he tweaked her naked nipples. It excited me and wounded me simultaneously.”
“So, you had to sit there and watch? Not do anything? How could you stand it that your fiancé was doing that in front of you?” Akiyo seems appalled.
“It didn’t bother me as much as you think to see Jimi with them…It was the fact that I wasn’t needed or used. I felt inadequate at the moment, as though I had failed in my position. So, I remained in my stance trying to ignore the exhibition I was excluded from. I remember looking intently at the floor counting strands of brown carpet as a diversion until the tips of two shiny black shoes obstructed my chore. One leather toe tapped under my chin directing me to raise my head. That’s when I saw him for the first time. He tapped my cheek with the same foot, a clear signal to open my mouth. He then flicked the growing ash from his cigarette into my mouth. I did not flinch and kept my mouth agape until he tapped my cheek again. The ash was cool once it had hit my tongue, but the dirty, smoky taste,” I scrunch my face, “I could have done without.” I chuckle. Akiyo is speechless. “He sat in the chair beside me, pulling the fine chain between my wrists guiding me to crawl closer to the front of the chair. With a finger he tilted my chin to raise my face up, allowing me to look at him. That touch was electric. He was stunning, and in my opinion, far more handsome than Jimi. He had hair as black as ink. His features were chiseled, yet not a smooth beauty. How would I say? He is what I always pictured a man’s man to look like, the epitome of masculinity.” I sigh at the remembrance of him, his touch, chills still raising across my body at the thought of him. “He told me that his name was Rodney, and that he had arranged to have me as his toy for that evening. His voice was smooth, carnal, and had an unusual accent that I couldn’t place. I made a quiet comment about his accent, that I loved it. That’s when he told me that he was from Toronto, a Canadian. I had never heard such a sensual voice before, accent aside.”
Akiyo makes a soft, almost dreamy comment, “Oh, men with accents are so sexy.”
“Yes, they are,” my grin is involuntary. “As he spoke, I watched the end of his cigarette grow orange, gray, and opened my mouth to play his human ashtray. When his smoke was close to the end, he held it between two fingers, tipped it toward me and slanted his head in question. I nodded to which he placed the burning butt to my shoulder, not grinding or extinguishing it completely, just a quick poke.”
Akiyo cups her mouth to stifle a gasp.
“I won’t lie to you. It hurt, but I restrained my reaction, staring into his forest green eyes and only allowing myself to inhale sharply, audibly. Then again, it was that type of hurt that I so relished.” I absentmindedly rub the ghost spot on my shoulder.
“This seemed to please him greatly. I could see the ever so slight squint of a smile in his eyes, and it gave me goosebumps. Suddenly, everything else in that room disappeared. I was fixated purely on Rodney. He fingered a cube of ice from his glass and placed it on the sting, even though there was nothing really there. The gesture…tender, caring. My stomach twirled, and my heart leapt with sensations of volatile emotion.” I bite my lip, “Jimi was not the affectionate type, although I did not realize how hard-hearted until later. The consideration that Rodney showed that night was not lost on me.
But back to the story, I knew that I would be used hard that night. I was sure that Jimi clued everyone in that pain was not an issue for me. I rather enjoyed it, honestly.
Rodney lit another cigarette. The plume of gray swirling in the air around him. I thought that I would be nothing but a human receptacle for the rest of the evening. So, I once again opened my mouth to him. Instead of flicking his embers into my mouth, Rodney placed two fingers onto my tongue in the middle of my unlocked teeth. Taking that as an invitation, I drew them in, closing my lips around his digits, swirling my tongue around him to exhibit my oral talents, thinking that was what he may want.
He was not interested in that though. Instead, Rodney hooked those fingers into my cheek, lifting upward. I rose up onto my knees. Those hard leather shoes, tapped between my knees coaxing me to spread them wider, and I did. Now, remember he was still seated in that huge chair, and he leaned forward a bit placing the hand that was in my mouth between my legs.
I was unmistakably stimulated already, my arousal clearly visible on his fingers. He continued to leisurely puff on his smoke, continuing the same pace between my legs. I tried to remain aloof, however the slippery friction of his dexterous attentions caused me to sigh. He had me so ready for anything he wanted to do to me. When I my lids shut, I felt the nip of the orange ember right on my breast. I opened my eyes to lock into his emerald spheres, his fingers never ceasing their magic down below.
Our gaze never wavered though I could see him raise the white cylinder to his lips again, and the orange glow ignite once more. Again the tip bit another spot nearer my erect nipple. I began to moan and slightly squirm, not trying to escape, you see, but begging for him to continue. Between the quick jabs of red-hot tinges and the constant fondling of that little magic spot, well, I knew I was headed for an explosion of pleasure.” Evoking the memory, I can feel the singe, and my chest clamps as I think of the way I felt lost in his eyes and longed for his touch. Even now, I still tingle. “My quick, heavy gasps and sighs made Rodney lean close to my ear. ‘Little one, do you want to cum?’ I could barely whisper out a yes to him; I was so engrossed in the sensations. His lips were brushing the shell of my ear as he whispered more, ‘You will, but only if you take the fire on the very tip of those beautiful, hard, pink nipples while I still rub your hot, wet pussy. Can you do that?’ Until that point he had only danced around that sensitive area with the cigarette, never directly touching it. It never even crossed my mind to say no, but I sat a moment too soon thinking about what it may feel like because Rodney began to withdraw. I panicked as his hands were leaving and blurted, ‘Yes, please, Sir, please, do it!’ His fingers resumed their work in my slick folds, his tongue licked the area right below my earlobe, and I felt the first swift bite directly to my pointed nipple. I bit my lip to keep the whimper in. Then, another rapid snap to the other side. With that little assault, I clenched around his fingers and my body shuddered. Even as I quaked lost in this phenomenal orgasm, I felt him bathe each stinging nipple with his wet mouth, soothing, sucking them.
Still, he was not done with me after I came down from that high he had given me. Rodney grabbed my hair, which was pulled to a ponytail on top of my head, and twisted it around his hand. He used my hair to pull me to standing as he stood as well. With a jerk, he yanked me forward over the arm of the chair, my bottom now pointing toward the ceiling. When I heard the crack, I knew what was coming next.”
I answer Akiyo’s nonverbal but obvious inquiry. “Surely, you’ve heard someone take a belt, fold it in half and quickly pull? The cracking sound it makes?” She nods, “Well, from that noise alone, I understood that a whipping was about to occur. It’s funny. There is this anxiety of the first strike. One can almost psych themselves out from mulling over it too long, especially when the Master is snaking the leather down your backbone, under your cheeks, over the back of your thighs. Not knowing where or when or how hard the strike will be, it’s mentally more excruciating than the lick of the leather. Once that first lash hits, though, the scorching heat, rhythmic pulsing of skin, the dull ache once the bite subsides is simply,” I breathe, “glorious.” Even now, I sense stirrings down below from the memory of Rodney’s belt. “Rodney tested me that evening for sure. He switched between wallops with the folded leather and cracks from further away with the full length of the strap, the tip biting, burning.” I close my eyes, reliving the sensations. “My hisses inhaling on each thwack bit by bit altered to whimpers. While there was agony, that torment was mixed, no added, to the carnal cravings. The intensity of both feelings, pleasure and pain, heightened my sensitivity. I promise if he had even placed one finger near my cleft, I would have exploded immediately,” I titter. Akiyo grins, though she still seems dumbfounded.
“Interspersing the whipping, Rodney would yank my hair, contorting my body back to whisper in my ear, ‘You love this don’t you, you filthy, depraved whore?’ The words…you would think that they would make me want to push him away, fight him off, but they only made me want him more. Once I could barely moan or answer verbally to Rodney, he stopped. I was slumped still across the arm of the chair, my face in the cushion, spent, nonetheless still not released.
Yet, our time together was still not finished. Ice cubes. He ran the freezing squares across the burning flesh.” I shiver as though I can actually feel the ice even now. “His tongue lapped the droplets distracting me for the moment when he stuck the melting block right into my wanting hole. I jumped, and once again he tugged on my hair. Even as my hot little pocket melted the ice completely, my flesh became almost numb, and I believed at this point that I would surely be denied another orgasm since I was granted one that night as I stayed in my position, Rodney no longer touching me. I was wrong.
I felt the pressure of his stiff cock entering my pussy, his hands squeezing into my hips. When I felt his balls against me, he twisted my hair around his fist, pulling my head back. He nipped my ear saying ‘You’ve been flawless.’ My chest ballooned with happiness, and another emotion, perhaps love? I wanted him. I wanted him to want me, for more than just one session. Rodney was who I wanted as a Master, Dom.
As he began to ride me roughly, I came back to reality noticing Jimi and the others standing audience to our display. Jimi showed no emotion, except for the blaze in his eyes.
Even with all of those eyes watching over us, the only thing I felt was Rodney, slamming into me, jerking my hair, biting my neck, Rodney. I climaxed like I have never before in my life, never since, a detonation of my pussy from the trigger of his cock. He collapsed atop me, running his lips from the crook of my neck up to my ear, and the minute that Rodney whispered, ‘I want you for mine, Libby,’ I knew that if he really meant it I would run away with him right then. Then, he removed himself from me; I immediately missed his body connected to mine. I sank to my knees, back into position, only catching his eye one last time when he brushed my cheek with his fingertips to say, ‘Thank you, Sir.’
My focus once again was on the fibers of the carpet, but my head envisioning those emerald eyes, his voice, my inner turmoil. I imagined myself at Rodney’s feet, not Jimi’s. Though Rodney was harsh, there was also affection in his attentions. It sounds odd when you think about all of the things he had just done to me, but he had a tenderness that none had ever shown me before. It was a combination that I had always longed for. I began to fantasize about living with Rodney, not Jimi, sharing a life, a home…Once I had the courage to disobey by seeking him out with my gaze, his back was disappearing through the door, and Jimi was glaring at me in disapproval. At that moment, I did something that I never had. I prayed. I prayed that I would see Rodney again, and if I did, I would offer myself to him.”
“Did you, Libby? Did you wind up with Rodney?”
I feel my eyes glisten, “No, Akiyo. I hoped. I made excuses to wait to start planning the wedding. I pushed it off for as long as I could. Finally, I took it as a sign that Rodney was not going to come back into my life. He’s my one that got away.”
“Libby, you’re getting out soon, maybe even the end of this week. Would you like me to go to your home and get anything for you or do anything for you? Maybe I can get groceries or just go freshen up the place for you before you head back home once we find out your discharge date? You’ve been gone quite a while.” Akiyo has continued to visit me after her shifts end, no matter the time, and as I am always here.
“That is very kind of you, but you don’t have to do that, Akiyo.”
“I know that I don’t have to, but I would like to make sure that when you get home you are as comfortable as possible.”
“You are a godsend, Akiyo. I really don’t know what I’m going to do without seeing you every day,” I laugh, but I mean it. This young woman has become a confidant, and friend to me. It’s been fun having a girlfriend to chat with, even if she is young enough to be my daughter, for that matter.
“Now that you are allowed, would you like to take a walk? We can talk and maybe sit on the portico by the gardens. The flowers are blooming. Besides the fresh air will be a nice change, don’t you think?” She assists me in standing from the bed and helps me as I slip my arms through a second hospital gown backwards, wrapping the opening around my front to cover what would surely be my exposed bum otherwise. “See, Libby, I can at least go get you some things to wear, a robe or something, so you do not have to bear these anymore.”
“True enough,” I cave to her offered help. “Okay, I’ll give you the key, if you truly don’t mind.”
Akiyo loops one of my arms through hers, keeping me a little balanced as we begin our short trek to the outdoor seating area for staff, family, and patients who are well enough to enjoy it. “So tell me, Libby, did you ever marry Jimi? Did you go through with it?”
I pat her hand on my arm with my free hand. “Oh, yes, I did,” my voice has a tinge of sadness, however, I smile slightly as Akiyo helps me to one of the seats in the shade of the gardens. She then takes the seat next to me. “As I said, I pushed off the planning for quite a while after that night, giving excuses of being focused on work, then not being able to decide on a big wedding or small, colors…At first, Jimi seemed okay with the plans moving slowly. Then, he began to become more persistent. I never quite understood why especially because we never made the move to live together beforehand. Hell, we rarely spent a full night together, and never at his place. That should have been my second sign. The first was my hesitancy to even go through with the wedding.” I shake my head and focus on the orange, yellow, purple and pink mums and marigolds among the green. Sigh, “I was in denial, I guess. But yes, we did eventually marry. It was funny because we had a better honeymoon than I had anticipated. Then we came home, and outside the door of his house, he kissed me gently, sweetly. I thought that maybe all of my doubts were just needless worries, and we could be happy. I had finally come to live in his home, or domain. Yes, domain describes it better because it was not a home. When the honeymoon was over, everything changed. From the first day back, the moment my suitcases hit the floor inside of that door, he dictated over me in all matters.
You see, before then, he only asserted his rules when we were in scene. My outside life, my time with friends, my work, he never spoke a word of it. I lived just as normally as everyone else outside of our kink, until that moment. Any hope that I had of us being happy was quickly squashed.
I do not joke when I say that he handed me a list, an actual paper list of his rules.” I give a curt nod, when Akiyo jerks her head and opens her mouth flabbergasted. “Yes, he handed me this list and told me that he expected me to memorize it by the next day, and to begin undertaking all of the responsibilities that were now mine, and mine alone, including directives on my behavior in public with or without him. He then led me to the bedroom and opened one of the closet doors. He had taken it upon himself to buy me a wardrobe that he deemed suitable of the woman who was his wife.”
“What the hell?” Akiyo gasps.
Raising one shoulder, I answer, “I rationalized that due to his work, he wanted his wife to be seen in the quality of style that would only seem appropriate to a CEO of a rather well-known proprietary trading firm. There were many business dinners and events and galas where I was expected to be on his arm, quiet and pretty, as he schmoozed and played Mr. Bigshot. I deemed it to be an acceptable request since I had agreed to enter his world. In fact, I found it slightly humorous because of his secret and what most considered perverted inclinations.” I make light of it now, but I recall my heart cracking during this instant. “I just assumed that he needed me to look the part of a trophy wife. I went along with it, and thanked him as it was a magnificent wardrobe that before then, I would have never imagined owning.”
Akiyo’s stern face gives away that she believes that I accepted the situation without difficulty. She sees right through me, and I cannot face her. I turn back to watch a bee flit amongst the blooms. Folding my hands in my lap, I continue the tale.
“Along with the makeover, Jimi thought it best that I also improve my conversation skills. Though, my foul mouth was deemed perfectly fine during our times of play, anytime other than when deemed permissible by him, I was expected to speak with the utmost decorum.”
“Mmmhmm,” Akiyo hums out in a manner of understanding.
I acknowledge her, “Yes, you’re right. I did not always speak in this classy way. For goodness sake, I was a free love, free spirit, hippie,” a slip of a chortle skims from my lips. “But, at first, the demands seemed…sensible.” The reminiscences engross my whole self. I swear that I feel my stomach churn and the lump in my throat. “The first time,” I swallow audibly, “the first time that I did not live up to his standards at a client dinner, he reprimanded me in front of everyone. He did it in a way that was comical to those around, hinting at my idiocy, but under the table he poked into my outer thigh with a two pronged seafood fork. The gesture letting me know, obviously he was not pleased with my behavior. When we returned home, he banished me into the guest bedroom until he gave me permission to enter his again. He told me that he did not want to hear my shrill, disrespectful voice. He did not speak to me for three days, not one word, not one glance. He did leave a list adding to my responsibilities.” I rub my hands remembering the feel of rawness in those days. “The household chores were ever increasing. I had long stopped seeing my friends. Eventually, I was staying up most of the night trying to tackle my list to perfection after my days at the office. Jimi decided that in order for me to be a better wife that I should give up my job. Granted I did not have an affluent job as a secretary, but I enjoyed it. Believing that it would make Jimi happy, and perhaps a little less strict, I complied.”
Closing my eyes, I pinch the bridge of my nose, “Let’s suffice it to say that nothing made Jimi happy, at least with me.” I feel Akiyo squeeze my shoulder and lightly rub my back. Eyes still clasped shut, the rest comes out a little quiet and rushed. I hadn’t really thought about this in years, pushing all of the pain, feelings of inadequacies, and revulsion deep within to an inner vault, wrapped in dozens of chains in hopes that they would never emerge.
“Jimi wasn’t a real Dom. He was an aberration. He did not want someone to spend life with as partners, even if that someone was willing to submit everything to him. He wanted complete and utter power over someone. I spent far too long locked there.
It all clicked for me when we were at Jimi’s cousin Julia’s wedding at the River Walk in San Antonio. It was a small, but lovely affair held outdoors. I remember sitting among the blooming trees along the bank of the river. I watched Julia and her groom up there in front of all of us, glowing, and the way he looked down at her with such adoration. When they kissed, you could feel the mutual love they felt for each other.
All during the reception, I found myself studying this newly married couple, their obvious affection for each other, the closeness they shared. As the evening grew darker, so did my mood. Standing amongst Jimi’s family, I looked over at him. He caught me and stared back at me. His eyes were cold, hard, like two emotionless stones. I knew that we had been living a lie, no matter how much I lied to myself about it, and I could not stand it any longer. I turned to Jimi who had not spoken a word to me all evening. In that beautiful setting of candles, flowers, laughter, I snapped. I did not care that his parents were right next to us, nor the other guests scattered closely around. I tapped him on the shoulder to get his attention. I said to him, probably a little too loudly, ‘I can’t do it anymore. I’m done. I refuse to spend another second with you.’ Those around us gasped, and Jimi tried to grab me reaching for my arm, but I stepped back quickly saying, ‘Don’t even try it. It’s over, and you have no control over me anymore.’ Maybe, subconsciously, I knew that he would be less likely to make a scene in this setting. Whatever the case was, the River Walk was the turning point in my life for me. After eleven years, and Jimi no longer bothering to even try to hide his infidelities and his contempt of me, for I was nothing more than a servant at this time, I filed for divorce. That was in the year 2000.” One salty tear slides down to my lip. I lick it away, while shoving those memories back into the locked box where they belong.
“I’m sorry, Libby.” I haven’t even noticed that Akiyo has both of my hands clasped in hers.
“Don’t be,” I have a lopsided grin on my face. “Hey, let’s talk about my night with Rodney again. Heaven knows, I love to relive that one over and over and over.”
She shakes her dark curls and giggles, “And I don’t mind hearing it.”
The hot air and blinding sun actually caresses my skin. After so long bedridden, being able to walk outside is glorious, even if it is close to blazing hot. Today, I get to sleep in my own bed. Akiyo is taking me there now in her sporty little red coupe.
“So, Libby, I stocked the fridge with some easy things to prepare, made a few little dinners so that you don’t have to worry about it for a few days either. I straightened up and freshened up your linens so that you can take it easy.”
I guffaw, “Haven’t I been taking it easy for long enough? You really didn’t have to do all of that… but I sure appreciate it. My gosh, Akiyo, it’s going to be so different not chatting with you every day. Maybe now you can get that social life since you won’t be keeping my old bum company all the time.”
“I think that I need to reevaluate my social life now. You’ve got me all interested in things I never knew of,” she winks at me.
“Oh dear, will I have to take you out shopping for a good corset now?” I tease.
“Corset? Do I need one?” she is completely serious.
My eyes roll involuntarily, and I good naturedly pat her shoulder. “You don’t need anything, Akiyo. But, if you want to talk or have questions, you know how to find me.”
“I hope you know that I will be ringing your phone a lot, and maybe we can do lunch or dinner? Libby, you’ve become a great friend to me.” She is staring straight ahead.
“You too, Akiyo,” I decide to lighten the mood. “Are you sure you want to be seen out with an archaic kinkster?”
Her chuckle is a snort, “You’re crazy, Libby. Look at you. You are one classy chick,” she rummages with one hand in her bag retrieving a silver cylinder with a pink ribbon. “Little gift. Put on that red lipstick, celebrate being a hot momma, Libby.”
I pull down her visor to apply the red stain. Well, not too shabby, I laugh inwardly. Though my hair is white, it’s perfectly styled. The old skin has its color back and smooth enough with just a few laugh lines around my eyes. I suppose that I have held up pretty well.
There is a sense of contentment as we roll into my driveway. I open the car door, and straighten my black slacks and white top. I have no clue why Akiyo picked this outfit to bring me instead of some of my yoga pants. She has retrieved my little bag from the car and is slowly following me up the walk to the door. I turn the key in the lock opening the door. All the familiar smells float to me letting me know I am indeed free from the sterile hospital and home. I take two steps inside, waiting for Akiyo to follow. Instead, she just places my bag on the floor inside the door.
“Give me a call later, Libby.”
I am confused, “You’re not coming in? Akiyo, after all you’ve done, let me fix you something to eat or tea or…”
Akiyo’s smile is from ear to ear, all white teeth shining as she peers over my shoulder and shakes her head, “No, Libby, later!” And she turns and skips to her car before I can get another word out.
“Oh well,” I close the door and walk around the foyer immersed in the familiarity. I do not even feel as though I have been gone for well over a month. Entering the sitting room, I am stopped in my tracks.
Those forest green eyes, a ghost from the past, a ghost that I never thought I would see again. The years have been especially kind to him, as it is to many men. Though his hair is grayed, and his face a little more weathered, there is no denying him.
“How?” is almost imperceptible.
I am frozen, so he makes the trek to me. He nods to the door, “Your friend, Akiyo, she found me. These young people know all the ways to find anyone with the internet now it seems. You mentioning that you remembered that I was from Toronto, helped narrow the search, I guess, according to her. I’m glad she did find me,” he smiles, and his face is warm and shows an authentic happiness. “We had quite a few interesting conversations, Libby. You see, I thought there was no chance for me after that night. I approached Jimi, hoping the two of you were not seriously attached. I wanted to somehow steal you away from him. He made it clear that you were his. In fact, he told me that you were married to him, and that night was a special circumstance. He told me I was to never come near you again. If I had known that he was lying and you were not married yet, nothing could have stopped me from pursuing you, Libby.” Rodney raises a single perfect red rose between us. “Through all of these years, I have never stopped thinking about you and that night.” The velvet petals stroke my cheek as his words flow like warm water over my skin. “When, Akiyo expressed that you, perhaps felt the same and suggested that I come, I didn’t hesitate. I meant it when I told you were flawless, and I wanted you, Libby. I still do.”
My breathing is labored, short little airy gasps, and it has absolutely nothing to do with the condition that I have suffered through. His fingers hold the blood red rose to me in offering. Gently I steal it away and breathe in its heady fragrance.
“Libby?” his voice is stern.
“Yes,” I nod.
Rodney’s hands travel to his waist around the buckle of his black leather belt, beginning to loosen it. “I’d like to take up where we left off.”
Through the ages, I never thought I would be able to say this to him again, “Yes, Sir. Thank you.”