My most recent release is on my mind so I’d like to share with you an excerpt from Bent Not Broken. This is a conversation between the two main characters demonstrating a number of things that I feel should happen between a Master and sub. After the excerpt I’ll come back and point out what I wanted to do.
“You’re welcome. Before you go, I’d like to follow up on something you said a couple of weeks ago.” He needed to stop avoiding sensation play. Many subs had been abused, and they didn’t find impact play abusive. Riku had to Master-up and figure it out.
Stefano’s eyes widened. “Go… oh, um, yeah. Of course. Sure, shoot.”
“You said a sub wants their pain acknowledged.”
Stefano shrugged and nodded.
Riku continued, “There’s a theory that when a Master prepares for a scene and focuses all their energy on the sub, it shows the sub they are thought of and someone is trying to address their needs.”
Stefano turned and sat cross-legged on the bed, facing Riku. “Yup, that sounds about right. I saw a demonstration once where the Mistress explained that she gives the sub pain. They suffer for her, but she sees the hurt and helps them get beyond it.”
“So it’s a way of validating your experience?” Riku wanted to understand Stefano better. He hated Dominants who simply assumed the rationale behind a sub’s needs.
The sheet slipped lower on Stefano’s torso. “Yeah, I guess you… someone witnessing my pain means it’s real.”
“And you think it may help some past pain as well?”
It was beyond the time that Riku should acknowledge the truth of their situation. “I realize we aren’t doing things how you might normally do them.”
Stefano confessed, “Most Mistresses were much stricter and gave me painful consequences for any misstep, but you can get me on the path to subspace with handwashing, so what do I know?”
Riku chuckled. “You delight me.”
His sub’s cheeks tinted a sweet pink, making him look younger than almost thirty. “For that I’m eternally grateful.”
“Brat.” Riku got serious. “I’ll be honest with you. I want to be careful in terms of reinforcing anything that’s negative with you—”
“Goddammit! I don’t need kid gloves.” Stefano slapped a hand over his mouth.
“It is necessary for me. Remember, I have nonnegotiables too. I don’t know enough about working with someone who has a history of abuse. You’ve placed your mental and physical well-being into my hands. I won’t do something that has unintended consequences for you.”
“I appreciate your faith in me, but the truth is, I have to feel your faith in me is justified.”
“I hate that.”
“Sorry, but remember this is one of my non-negotiables. As your Master, friend, and lover, I want to cause you no lasting harm. I wanted you to know I’m doing research and learning how I can get to that place.”
“Yes, Master. I guess it’s dumb to fight against what you think is best for me.”
But Riku knew it wouldn’t stop Stefano from doing just that if that’s what he needed to do.
I wanted to do several things with this scene:
- To show the Master and sub checking in with each other.
- I needed to highlight the fact that Masters aren’t perfect.
- Masters can have non-negotiables > things they will not and can’t compromise on.
- Highlighting the potential goals of BDSM can be: reinforcing that the sub is worth the energy the Master is exerting on their behalf, and a validation of someone seeing the subs pain and getting them to the other side.
- I wanted to reinforce that there are many ways to prepare the sub to begin a scene (could be dressing in leather, punishing missteps or in this case handwashing).
- Researching and understanding the sub is key… (again Masters are moving in unchartered territory so they better have as many facts and tools at their disposal)
- We can only expect 80% compliance from most people. It’s unrealistic to expect more from someone unless the goal is to hold them to account.
If you get a chance I hope you give Bent Not Broken a try.
Check out Bent Not Broken today!
Stefano Rossi longs for the mystical—and so far unattainable—peace of reaching subspace. But can he accept that the person who can take him there is a man?
Riku Tao has given up on finding a sub who complements him. He’ll stick with doing demonstrations at the BDSM club the Edge. He certainly doesn’t have time for a closeted Catholic guy with internalized biphobia… and yet he cannot help but want to protect Stefano and give him what he needs. A history of physical and sexual abuse makes it impossible for Stefano to come out of the closet, and Riku certainly isn’t going back in.
Perhaps an arrangement of six months to explore their desires will be enough to satisfy them both.
Or it might break their hearts.
To take hold of his future with the man he’s coming to love, Stefano will need to move beyond the pain of his past, and he won’t be able to do it alone.
Always seek your own truth.
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