Monday, September 2, 2013

Only One Story

By Lisabet Sarai

Sometimes I feel as though I'm writing the same story, over and over, about the same person. If you've been reading the Grip for a while, you'll know who I'm talking about – the man who introduced me to dominance and submission, more than thirty years ago, and left his fingerprints all over my soul.

We were a couple for less than two years. Then happenstance, plus our own insecurities and misconceptions, came between us, and we ended up first on opposite sides of a continent, now on opposite sides of the globe.

My first erotica was for him – private fantasies to amuse and arouse him. Or so I told myself. Maybe I was really writing them for myself, to relive the intensity and the joy, to explore all the territory we never had time to traverse together.

Then came Raw Silk. He was simultaneously appalled and flattered. Not that the events in the book are based on reality, but he certainly recognized the emotions, the dynamics. I even quoted a few of the wild, cheesy, breath-stopping letters he used in his epistolary seduction.

Anyone familiar with my backlist knows I don't always write BDSM. I've got stories in pretty much every genre, with every combination of genders. But when I do write tales of power exchange, I think readers sense my own deeper involvement with the topic at hand. And even when I write F/F power play, he's there in my head and in the scene, making comments.


He dangled the whip above her shoulder, the knots just touching, then brushed it lightly across her breasts. The leather was amazingly soft, but as he dragged it across her still-swollen nipples, she felt the echo of the clamps on her flesh.

Now he was delicately tracing an upward path, from her pubic fur across her belly, sending delicious tremors up her spine and down her bound arms. Thus far, he was using the cat o' nine tails as an instrument of pure pleasure.

He spoke again, without stopping his leather caresses. “Have you ever been beaten by a lover, Kate?”

Kate shook her head, and felt herself blush, though she did not understand why.

“Have you ever dreamed or fantasised about such a thing?” Gregory asked.

“No,” said Kate, indignant. “Of course not.”

Gregory laughed. “Of course not? Indeed! Perhaps you don’t remember your dreams, Kate.”

He leaned close to her ear, whispering. “The first time I laid eyes on you, Kate, I sensed that you craved the whip. I saw it in your eyes, in the way you moved, in your fierce, almost defiant independence. I felt your yearning to be mastered, to be set free.”

Kate hung her head, and said nothing. Was what he said true? Did she really know so little of herself?

“I want to whip you, Kate, whip you well, to open your mind and your senses to the possibilities within you.”

~ Raw Silk (1999)


"Being naughty again, Sarah?" He speaks softly, his rich, melodious voice seducing me as it always does. "Trying to tease me, my little slut?"

"Just trying to cheer you up." I arch my back slightly, silently suggesting that he explore my cleft more deeply. In typical exasperating fashion, he takes his hand away.

"Perfectly innocent, I'm sure," he mocks, but he's smiling now, TV forgotten, the power and challenge of his attention fully directed at me. I bask in his gaze, proud and humble simultaneously. "You know what happens when you tease me. I'm sure that you remember the other night."

Of course I do, and the memory leaves me wet and breathless: the binding, the beating, the final delicious buggering. My sex overflows. My thighs are slippery with my juices. I imagine he can hear the liquid squelch as I walk. His arm is around my shoulder now, guiding me along.

We pass a display of galvanized steel fittings. I stop, fascinated. Sturdy eye bolts and swivel bolts, hooks and pulleys, interlocking rings and brackets, all sensuously curved and shining a dull silver. I can't take my eyes away, imagining spread limbs and stretched muscles. Hardware stores always bring out my creative side.

He laughs at my intensity. "You know that we can't attach anything to the walls, Sarah. It's in the resident's agreement."

"Well... what about out on the deck?" Our top-floor condo has a lovely patio built out on the flat part of the roof. From there we have a fabulous view of the city, from Twin Peaks to the Golden Gate.

"You want me to bind you out in the open, where anyone uphill can see you?" He rolls his eyes heavenward, pretending annoyance. "And you say that I'm perverted!"

He steers me onward. Reluctantly, I leave the suggestive display of fittings, only to be transfixed by the rolls of self-service chain at the other end of the aisle.

"Chain is completely impractical," he reminds me with a grin.

"But it's so decorative, so evocative," I counter. "Whips and chains, you know."

"Whatever you want, dear," he says, bowing low. I make a choice and he cuts me a four foot length of the pretty, brass-finished stuff with half-inch links. He dumps it into our basket. It gives a satisfying clink whenever we move.

My nipples go taut at the sound. He notices, of course, and leans down to tweak one, hard. Another wave of lubrication gushes from my cunt. His nostrils flare as my scent fills the aisle.

"My turn," he says. "Let's go check out the dowels." His thumb and forefinger are still grasping my swollen tit. He leads me toward the back of the store.

~ Wednesday Night at Rocky's Ace Hardware (2002)


"Good. Now, then. Let's get rid of those clothes."

I began to unbutton my blouse.

"No, don't move. I’ll undress you, this time."

He undid the first three buttons and pulled the garment open to reveal my unglamorous cotton bra. He brushed his fingertips over my swollen nipples, clearly visible as they poked out the fabric. Pleasure shivered across my skin and down to my already-aching pussy.

"You have such lovely big nipples. So sensitive." He pinched the right one. I gasped. "I don't want you to wear a bra anymore. I want everyone to be able to see those luscious tits of yours."

"But, when I teach... It's not proper..."

"Did I say you could speak?" He frowned briefly. I wanted to drop through the floor.

"If you want to please me, you'll go braless. It's up to you."

I was silent. I craved his approval, more than anything.

He laid a cool palm against my cheek. "What other people think doesn't matter, Colette. You only need to worry about me."

All at once he leaned down and kissed me. I expected brashness, energy, power. Instead it was a gossamer kiss, delicate, the barest contact of his lips on mine.

It set me on fire. Tremors raced through my body. I felt his hands everywhere, exploring, exposing my raw need. I felt his mind, questing, tasting the flavors of my lust. Yet only his lips were touching me, and just barely.

I wanted more. I wanted his tongue, his fingers. I wanted his cock, which I knew was hard though I hadn't seen it. I was acutely aware of his lust, controlled and hidden as it was. I tried to press my body against him, but he pulled away.

"Not yet. Not until you're ready." He resumed the process of methodically removing my clothes. He did not touch me again. I could swear that he was trying to frustrate me. I promised myself that I wouldn't beg.

Finally, I was naked. He stepped back to look me over. "Very nice. Even nicer than I imagined. You have such fair skin, Colette. The blood is very close to the surface."

Blood? I remembered that I hardly knew this man. Somehow that was irrelevant.

"And you're so hairy, down here. I'm glad you're not shaved. Although that might heighten the sensations, I admit that I'm somewhat old-fashioned." He slipped a finger through the curly tangle of my pubic hair, unerringly finding my clit. Sparks shot through me. My body jerked uncontrollably.

He took his hand away. I prayed silently that he'd put it back.

"So very wet, too. That's excellent. It will raise the conductivity."

~ Body Electric (2008)


Three years since I last saw him, and now his plane is late. I perch on the edge of the chair across from the American Airlines desk where he told me to meet him, tension winding me tighter with every moment.

It’s always like this. My chest aches. It’s difficult to breathe. My nipples are as taut and swollen as if he already had them wrapped in elastic bands. I try not to be distracted by the stickiness between my bare thighs. I glance at the arrivals screen. His flight has just landed. Ten minutes, fifteen at most, before I can expect him. I fill my lungs deliberately and try to slow my racing pulse.

I hover between joy and terror. It has been so long, too long. What will he think of me, the strands of gray in my hair, the new wrinkles? What will he ask of me? Will I be able to give him what he needs? I remember other reunions, too few, too short. No time for more than a few kisses, a few playful swats on my bared butt. I remember lying on his lap in Golden Gate Park, my skirt flipped up around my waist. I can precisely recreate my shame and my excitement. I recall slouching down in the front seat of his car in a dark, sweltering parking garage, while he unbuttoned my blouse and dabbled his fingers in my cunt, naming me as his slut. A few hours every few years is all we manage, a country and my marriage separating us even as our history and our fantasies draws us together.

Today will be different. I’ve booked us a hotel room, in this city where neither of us live. We have the entire day. My husband waits for me at home, while I wait here in the airport for my master.

I don’t call him that to his face. He’d mock me, his voice bitter. “If I were your master, I’d simply order to you leave him and come to me, and you would.” He doesn’t give me that order, although I suspect that he’s tempted. He refrains, out of respect for me and my choices, or maybe in fear that his power over me is not as great as he would like to imagine. He spares us both, and I’m grateful, though now, waiting, burning to see him again, I almost wish that he’d put me to that ultimate test and take away the awful yearning that I feel when we’re apart.

Every one of my senses is on alert, yet he manages to surprise me. I’m looking toward the gates. He comes from the other direction and calls to me softly. “Sarah.”

I start and then laugh nervously. When I stand up, my bag tumbles off my lap to the floor, toys clattering inside. “You’re here!” I feel clumsy, silly, stupid, but when he bends to kiss me, everything but the joy disappears. I’m flooded with it, gasping, overwhelmed.

In his limbs I feel his pitiless strength. His lips, though, are gentle, questioning. Am I still his? I melt, open my mouth and my mind to him. Does he sense the answer? Sometimes I am certain that he reads my thoughts. He laughs ironically and calls me suggestible. I don’t know what to believe, which suits him perfectly. He wants me a bit off-balance.

I struggle to act normal, as if I were just meeting an old friend. “How was your flight? Did you have trouble with your connections? What about your baggage? Is that the only jacket you have? October here can be kind of chilly...”

“Hush,” he says, laying a blunt finger upon my lips. “Don’t chatter. Take me to the hotel.”

~ Reunion (2009)


It takes no more than sixty seconds. One dark look from him and I'm on my knees, his heavy, uncut cock brushing my lips. "Open," he says, and his silken voice wipes away every doubt and regret.

His cock is as silky as his voice but with a core of steel. He slides it into my suddenly eager mouth. I suck at the salty, slighty sour flesh, but only for an instant before he takes over.

He's very hard, very urgent. The hand tangled in my hair tells me he needs this as much as I apparently do. He drives his length down my throat. I take it all, like some porn star, desperate to please him. It hurts. The skin is soft but he uses his cock like a battering ram, determined to break down my walls.
They are down already. I stretch my jaws, crane my neck, and receive what he gives.

His cum erupts across my tongue. I choke and sputter, trying to swallow the bitter fluid. A few drops trickle down my chin onto my linen jacket. At that moment, I don't care. He strokes my curls back into some semblance of order and raises me to my feet. His eyes are black diamonds.

"I knew it," he says. Slow, thoughtful, he smears my lipstick even further with his thumb. I feel my lower lips gaping too, just as wet and swollen. "I could tell." My nipples peak under my jacket, screaming for his attention. He continues to gaze into my eyes. I can't hide.

The elevator dings. "My floor," he says, laughter rippling on the edge of his words for the first time. He takes my hand. A sharp rectangle of plastic cuts into my sweating palm. "Room 1263. Seven o'clock."

"But..." I begin. He silences me with a single look.

~ Never Too Late (2010)

He's the sadist in our relationship. But I'm the one who's more extreme.

He wanted to strap a butterfly vibe to my clit, to ramp up my arousal so I could better bear the pain. Does he really believe I could be more aroused than I already am?

I'm immobilized in one of our dinette chairs. Leather cuffs secure my wrists and ankles. Woven straps encircle my thighs, my upper arms, my waist and torso. The first rasp of separating Velcro liquefied me. No, that's not right. I've been soaked since I served him dinner and he informed me, ever so casually, that tonight was the night.

He putters around the kitchen, drawing out the preparations, making me wait. My Master possesses an instinctive sense of timing - an asset for any Dom. He plays every action for greatest effect. The goose necked lamp from my desk has already been plugged in, ready to dispel any shadows. Spreading a clean towel on the breakfast bar beside my chair, he lays out his materials and implements, one at a time: latex gloves, a cigarette lighter, rubbing alcohol, cotton balls, betadine, gauze, surgical tape, and finally, two gleaming, silvery scalpels. The steel flashes under the fluorescent lights, impossibly sharp.

A shudder ripples through my bound body, half terror, half lust. My juices pool under my bare ass.

He cups my chin in his palm and raise my face to his. His lips curve into a half smile. I know from his eager inhalation that he's caught my pussy scent. My cheeks burn, but he won't let me look away.

"Are you all right, Becca?" His voice makes me think of polished mahogany and warm honey, dark, rich and sweet beyond measure. He could order me to do anything in that voice and I'd rush to obey. "Still want to go ahead?"

Shame and desire battle inside me. No matter how many scenes we play, I'm always appalled by my own perversity. I swallow hard, unable to force the words out. How can I want this? How can I admit that I do?

~ Limits: A Love Story (2012)


See what I mean? I'd worry about this – obsession – but it has fueled what I know are my best, my truest, stories, so how can I wish it gone? In these tales, I can create the future together that we never had. I can imagine what it would be like if I'd been with him for the past three decades, instead of my (much beloved) husband. I can take my memories of the few, limited encounters we've had over the years and spin them into sweet, dark scenes without the bitter taste of regret.

In these stories, I take a heady journey into an alternate reality. And he is my constant companion.


  1. still so much of your body of work i haven't read yet. spicy excerpts. thanks for taking us to the initial spring of your work. mulling over what i'm going to write for this topic...

  2. Thanks, Amanda. When I reread these tales, I know that I'm lost.

  3. How lucky to have such an influence on this fork of your future path at such a young age, Lisabet. Obvious that you were a natural writer to begin with, but he has sent you in this direction much to our benefit. It's been a while since I read anything of yours, so thanks for the stirrin's in me loins this morning.

    1. I know I was lucky. Now I feel annoyed, though, by all the people writing BDSM who have zero experience. As someone on the ERWA Writers list commented recently, BDSM is the new vanilla. Back then, it felt so transgressive - and that aspect was one of the bonds between my master and me.

  4. Hi Lisabet!

    Have you ever imagined these days what it would be like if you actually met each other again after all these years? Would the electricity still there or would you have coffee and compare 401ks?


    1. Ah, Garce - we have seen each other, over the years. It's always frustrating, heart-breaking, tantalizing.

      The last time was six or seven years ago. We met, had lunch - I always have to keep tight control over the situation, stay aware of my commitment to my marriage. When what I really want to do is just let go...

      But the "electricity" was always more mental than physical. I mean, the physical derived from the psychological and emotional aspects, not the other way around.


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