The collar, p.4
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       The Collar, p.4

         Part #6 of Submissive series by Tara Sue Me
 

  preferred. Out of habit, she shifted her gaze to the floor.

  “Look at me, Dena.” He spoke softly and waited until she lifted her head. “I can’t speak for other Dominants in the group, but I want your eyes on me when we talk unless I tell you differently.”

  “Thank you, Sir,” she replied. Something about the gruffness of his voice made her hyperaware of how long it’d been since she’d played with anyone. She wondered if his touch would match the roughness of his voice.

  He nodded. “The group safe word is ‘red.’ Say it and the scene stops immediately. You’ll probably also have a few members come by to make sure you’re okay. Dungeon monitors have a yellow armband on. If you have questions or need anything, see one of them. As you’ve already noticed, no one is allowed inside who hasn’t been approved. But if someone comes up to you and you have any questions about their character or intent before you play, feel free to ask me.”

  She wondered if he was at the party with anyone. He was extremely good-looking in a rough and rustic kind of way. She’d always been attracted to his type, probably because it was so different from her father.

  Stop thinking about your father!

  “The two rooms upstairs are for demos,” Master Parks continued. “Basement is free space to play—just make sure everything’s clean before you leave. Most Dominants bring their own toys, since we’re rather attached to our favorites. Kitchen is neutral; no play allowed. Only certain members are allowed to play with doors closed. Again, if you have any questions, ask a DM or me.”

  She nodded.

  “I think that’s all. Do you have any questions?”

  “Just one, Sir.”

  His forehead wrinkled as if he were trying to decide what he left out. “Yes?”

  “What’s your favorite?”

  “Favorite what?”

  “Toy.” Her mind swam with images of him holding a flogger, smacking her backside with a crop, blindfolding her. “You said most Dominants had a favorite. I was wondering if you did.”

  His eyes darkened and his lips parted just a tiny bit. He had really full, kissable lips. She bet he had nice teeth, too. Probably amazing what he could do with those lips and teeth.

  “Actually,” he said, taking a step closer to her. There was very little space between them now; her belly tightened at how close he was. “I’m more of a bondage guy.” He captured her wrist, and his hands were warm and strong. Softly, he whispered in her ear, “How about you, Dena? What’s your favorite?”

  She licked her lips. When had her mouth gotten so dry? And could he see how hard she was breathing? Probably, she decided. But instead of feeling shame at how much he turned her on, she squared her shoulders and answered, “All of it, Sir. I like all of it.”

  Jeff Parks had taken one look at the beautiful blonde while she stood in the foyer and had known immediately she was out of his league. As a man who’d been raised in the lower middle class, it didn’t take much for him to recognize the look of someone with a completely different upbringing. Everything about her screamed upper class, from her perfect makeup and meticulously styled hair right down to the neatly painted red toenails peeking out of her ridiculously high heels.

  She reminded him of an angel, she was so perfectly put together. And though she was at a BDSM play party, he knew he wasn’t anywhere near angelic enough to be in her world. He’d faltered briefly when she’d said she had four years’ experience and then again when she’d asked what his favorite toy was, all the while looking at him with the bluest eyes he’d ever seen.

  Even now, standing in the kitchen, watching her move around the house, he wondered if he’d made a huge mistake in not asking if she wanted to play. If he closed his eyes, he could still smell the faint scent of jasmine that he’d first noticed when he’d taken her wrist.

  “You plan on asking her to play, or are you going to sit here and stare at her all night?”

  He turned at the sound of Daniel’s voice. “I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

  “Don’t even deny it.” Daniel nodded toward Dena. “The new blonde. I was thinking of asking her, but from the looks of it, you’ll pound anyone who approaches her into the ground.”

  Jeff’s body tensed as a relatively new Dom walked up to her. She turned and smiled at the guy but peeked toward Jeff out of the corner of her eye. The tension left him when she sweetly shook her head.

  “Looks like someone’s waiting for you,” Daniel said as the guy walked off.

  “Shut the fuck up.”

  “Or maybe she was looking at me.” Daniel pushed off from the counter. “Wonder if she looks as good with that corset off? Only one way to find out.”

  Damned if he was going to let Daniel have her. Though he probably should. They were both so much alike: blond good looks, wealthy, full of life.

  “Sit down,” he said to his friend, surprised at how rough his voice sounded.

  Daniel smiled in victory and sat on a nearby barstool. “About damn time.”

  Jeff pretended not to hear him as he walked toward Dena.

  She sat in the living room, a plate of cheese balanced on her knees and an open bottle of water on the floor by her feet.

  “Mind if I sit down?” he asked.

  “Master Parks,” she said, shifting the plate to one hand and attempting to stand up. “Please, have a seat.”

  He motioned for her to sit back down and took a seat beside her.

  “How’s your evening going?” he asked.

  She glanced at the floor briefly, but he was pleased to note she looked up and met his eyes without being told. “Very nice, Sir. Everyone’s so friendly.”

  “And yet you’re sitting here by yourself.”

  “Not anymore,” she said with a seductive grin.

  His cock hardened at her words, and he recalled what Daniel had said. Had she been waiting for him?

  “You’re an attractive woman,” he said. “I’m sure you could play with just about any Dominant you wanted.”

  She was a woman who knew exactly how desirable she was. She didn’t blush or brush off his compliment. Instead, she simply tipped her head in agreement. “I’ve never been one to play with just any Dominant, Sir.”

  He decided to see if Daniel had been right after all. They were in the living room, where light play was allowed. “Take your shoes off and tell me how long you’ve lived in Wilmington.”

  If she had no interest in him or playing, he knew she’d refuse. He braced himself for that possibility.

  Ever so smoothly, she put her plate aside and unbuckled her heels, slid her feet out of them. “I moved into the area four weeks ago. I just took a new job.”

  “Are you wearing anything under the skirt?”

  Her eyes darkened. “Yes, Sir.”

  “Good, because I didn’t ask why you moved here. Stand up and take the skirt off.”

  She didn’t hesitate at all. Moving quickly, she stood up, slid the skirt over her hips and down her legs, stepped out of it, and handed it to him. “I’m sorry for not following directions, Sir.”

  Fuck, he wanted her. She was gorgeous and an experienced submissive. She moved with the self-confidence of a person unafraid to admit her needs and wants. And, quite possibly, she wanted him, too.

  Still, he wasn’t one to jump into a scene without knowing a bit more about his partner. He fisted his hands against his thighs, forcing himself to take it slow and easy.

  “Tell me about your worst experience as a submissive,” he continued.

  For just a second, he thought she wouldn’t do it. He’d asked her something she wasn’t prepared for, and it unsettled her. She had a poker face a lot of the time, but every so often he could see hints of the woman underneath. A desire to seduce that woman and claim the submissive inside was growing within him quickly.

  “My worst experience,” she said, “was the day I left my old Master. It was more than knowing I’d disappointed him. I actually felt his disappointment. It was like it bu
rned me and weighted me down and picked me apart all at the same time. He was my Master, had been for almost a year. I’d lived to serve and please him. To knowingly do something he didn’t agree with? It killed a part of me.”

  There was something more to the story, he could tell. Even if he couldn’t sense it from her expression, what he knew of her in the little time they’d spoken told she wouldn’t have left her Dominant without cause.

  He had a feeling she’d tell him what it was if he asked, but he decided to leave that conversation for another day.

  “Thank you for sharing that with me. I know it wasn’t easy,” he said. “Now tell me about your best experience as a submissive.”

  She gave him a seductive smile. “My best experience was the day I left my old Master.”

  He covered his shock, or at least, he hoped he did. “How so?”

  “I was new in the lifestyle when I agreed to wear his collar. I didn’t know my own limits and, more important, my worth. He was never physically abusive, but mentally, he wore me down. After a time, I discovered he didn’t respect me, didn’t value what I brought to the relationship.” She shrugged. “I’m a submissive, not a doormat. I deserved more, and I left him so I could find it.”

  With every word she spoke, she impressed him more and more. He required honesty from anyone he played with, and she obviously understood its importance.

  She crossed her legs and swung her foot. Once again, he was struck by her beauty. The outward aspects of it were obvious, but he had a feeling her inner beauty was even more stunning.

  He realized she hadn’t taken a bite of anything since he’d sat down. He wouldn’t think she’d be waiting for him to give her permission to eat, but he should probably make sure. “Don’t let me keep you from eating.”

  She took a block of cheddar from the plate and popped it in her mouth. His gaze was drawn to her red lips, and he watched as she chewed and swallowed. It was damn near the most erotic thing he’d ever seen in his life.

  There was no use denying it: he wanted her. Badly.

  But interestingly enough, he wanted to get to know her better just as much. He shouldn’t, though. He wasn’t meant for her kind. She was too beautiful, too wealthy, too much.

  He didn’t care.

  He scooted closer to her. “I see this going one of two ways. One, I take you down to the basement and put my ropes to good use. Or two, we call it a night, I take you to dinner tomorrow, and we see where we go from there.”

  She leaned in to him. “Honestly, Sir, I’m a greedy submissive and I want them both.”

  His cock stirred. Oh, yes, she was going to be a delight to master. He traced her lips. “But think of how much better it’ll be when I finally take you after you’ve been thinking about it all night.”

  She kissed his finger. “Very well, Sir. Tomorrow night it is.”

  “And just to make sure you stay in the right frame of mind, no playing with yourself or coming until I grant permission.” He leaned even closer and whispered in her ear, “And believe me when I say, you don’t want to disobey me. My punishments are a bitch.”

  Jeff picked her up at her apartment the next evening at five. The elegant building was surrounded by pristine landscape and expensive cars, the whole scene just confirming his suspicion about her being a wealthy woman. He felt out of place pulling through the gated entrance to the apartment complex in his truck.

  Fuck it, he told himself. It’s just dinner.

  She opened the door at his knock and smiled. “Hello, Sir.”

  She looked different than she had the night before. Her makeup was softer, more natural, and her long hair flowed freely around her shoulders. She wore a simple blue dress and looked just as stunning in it as she had in the corset.

  “You can call me Jeff.”

  She closed the door behind her and locked it. “Thanks, but if you don’t mind, I prefer Sir.”

  She wanted to keep the lines clear, and while he understood that, part of him rebelled. “Sir is fine,” he said instead.

  They walked in silence to the truck, and he opened the passenger-side door for her.

  “Italian okay with you?” he asked once he’d pulled out of the apartment complex.

  “It’s one of my favorites.”

  Her words from the previous evening came back to him, and he smiled. “Is that so?”

  Her eyebrows crinkled in concentration. “Italian? Yes.”

  He dropped his voice. “I thought you said you didn’t have a favorite. That you liked all of it.”

  Her laugh was soft and seductive. “How very remiss of me to forget. I did say that, didn’t I?”

  “You did. I hope you didn’t forget what else we discussed.”

  “No, Sir.” Her breathing had changed, becoming ragged.

  He’d given a lot of thought to how he wanted the evening to go. They’d have dinner, get to know each other a little better; then, depending on how things went, he’d see if she wanted to play together. They could exchange checklists and get together in a few days.

  He had a simple playroom at his home, but he wouldn’t assume she’d be willing to go to an almost perfect stranger’s house. The submissives he knew had safety calls set up, and while he could appreciate that, he wanted anyone he played with to feel secure even without a safety call.

  Still, even though nothing would happen tonight, they could have fun.

  “Remind me what my command was,” he ordered.

  “I’m not allowed to play with myself or come until you give permission.”

  “Did you play with yourself or come?”

  “No, Sir.”

  He believed her, but still asked, “And why should I take you at your word?”

  “Because I want our first experience together to be pleasurable. Because I want to please you. And because you said your punishments were a bitch.”

  He glanced at her. Her hands were fisted on her knees. “That’s a lot of becauses,” he said.

  “I had to keep coming up with them.”

  “Why?”

  “Because I really wanted to come last night.”

  She didn’t have to say more. He knew exactly what she meant. In fact, he understood so well, he almost changed his mind about not playing after dinner.

  “I found your paperwork,” he said, changing the subject. “It was misplaced. I’m sorry for the confusion.”

  He’d found it tucked away in a stack of uncompleted forms, and to say he’d read through it would be an understatement. He’d pored over it, committing to memory every scrap of information about her. She’d even had the foresight to include a checklist, and he’d gone to bed with images that kept him awake long into the night.

  The restaurant he’d picked was a small, locally owned place he went to often. Part of him knew he was introducing her to his world by taking her to one of his favorite places. Subtly showing her the differences between the two of them. What he wasn’t sure about was whether he was pointing out those differences so she could accept them or so she would leave.

  The hostess greeted them warmly and led them to a secluded booth in the back corner of the restaurant. As they walked, Jeff kept his hand on the small of Dena’s back, subtly guiding her and noting how she responded to his touch. She swayed her hips slightly, playing into his hand.

  Once they were seated, she sipped her water and handed him the menu. “I’ll have whatever you suggest.”

  He looked at her warily. “You should know I’m not interested in a Master/slave relationship. I’d much rather you order for yourself.”

  “Trust me. This isn’t something I do on a regular basis. And I have my reasons.”

  So she was testing him? Interesting. But in light of the little he knew about her previous relationship, maybe it made sense.

  “And if I order you bread and water?” he asked.

  “Then I know everything I need to know.”

  “Any food allergies or anything you absolutely hate?”

 
“No.”

  “Anything you particularly love?”

  Joy and possibly relief flooded her expression. He tilted his head.

  Did you expect anything less? he silently asked.

  She upturned her palm on the table. “I love tomatoes.”

 
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