Henry twisted his neck back and forth trying to get some relief from the tightness of his collar and tie. Usually, he enjoyed cocktail parties, getting dressed up, mingling and carousing, but that evening he just wanted to be home in bed. It had been a horrible day and as much as he loved Joy and her friends, he just wasn’t in the mood to be charming.
The party was in a pretty and darkly lit bar. One of those speakeasy-type places that rented out its basement for intimate events. There was a piano and stand-up bass and singer, artfully filling the room with soft but interesting jazz. There were two handsome bartenders, shaking Martinis and Manhattans and all sorts of more unusual concoctions.
It should have been captivating, but that evening it all rang a bit flat, for Henry at least. He was planning his escape when he saw the woman with large hungry eyes in the corner. Tall, striking, pouting lips, a Roman nose, and those eyes, huge and demanding attention.
Henry wondered if it would be worth staying another few minutes just to introduce himself. As he contemplated, as if she read his thoughts, he saw that her gaze seemed to focus on him. The look in her eyes was somewhere between desperate and predatory. She was watching him, holding a full coupe of champagne and biting her bottom lip.
He looked her over once more. She was perhaps an inch shy of six feet tall, wide-hipped, and thick thighed. Her hair was straight and dark with neat bangs. Her aquiline nose made him think she might be Greek or Italian. Those eyes were pools of brown and thickly lined with black. She looked like an ancient statue. A beauty that was of another time. That look seemed to contrast with her nervous fidgeting posture.
As he watched her, she took a deep breath and seemed to make up her mind about something. She nodded and started walking towards him. Henry finished his Scotch and put the glass down on a nearby table. He stood up a little straighter and fixed his tie.
“You’re Henry,” she said when she got to him, and then she immediately seemed to regret what she said. For some reason he expected her to have an accent, but she seemed local or at least from somewhere on the East Coast.
“I am. I’m afraid you have me at a disadvantage,” he said with a smile. She sighed and gathered herself again.
“Right, yes, I’m sorry. I’m being incredibly rude. I’m Elena. I know you from, I mean, I had a friend who knew you. Victoria? Do you remember someone named Victoria? It was a while ago-” she started but she stopped talking when he smiled.
“Of course. How could I ever forget Victoria? It’s been years since I’ve heard from her. How is she?” he asked, motioning for a waiter to bring him another drink.
Elena sipped her champagne and considered the question. “She’s doing well, though we don’t talk much anymore. She moved to Chicago. She’s working for some advertising agency or something. She seems happy.”
Henry nodded. He had known Victoria for a short but intense time. It was a summer of abandon. He was younger then and wilder and Victoria was hungry for life. They met in a whirlwind and a date turned into a weekend together which turned into two weeks of sex and kink and passion the likes of which he had rarely ever seen before or since.
They tried to keep in touch after, but they seemed to only really have that one moment.
“She talked about you a lot. I mean, I was her roommate back then. I almost called the police when she didn’t come home that weekend. Then her text messages were so strange, so unlike her. Finally, when she came back she seemed changed somehow. It took days before the whole story spilled out of her,” Elena said in a rush, seeming embarrassed after she spoke as if she let out a secret.
Henry smiled, embarrassed more for her than himself. He was not a man who felt much shame about his own doings. The waiter handed him another Scotch and Henry inhaled the scent of the spirit. He closed his eyes and remembered Victoria, the taste of her, the madness of their time together. It was a flame that had never gone out and a memory he often came back to. He sipped his drink and smiled at Elena once more.
“Well, it’s lovely to meet you, Elena. Any friend of Victoria is a friend of mine. What brings you to Joy’s little get-together this evening?”
She eyed him and took a long sip of her drink. “I’ve been invited to a few of these things. We have more friends in common than just Victoria, it seems. Honestly, I came because I saw your name on the guest list. I remembered it from Victoria’s stories and I wanted to meet you.”
Her voice still wavered a little with nervousness, but it seemed to be getting more confident.
“Oh? Victoria’s stories left that much of an impression?” Henry said with a chuckle.
She didn’t laugh, she only nodded seriously. “Yes. I remember them very vividly. Now, just like then, I want that. I want to live her story. Tied down and used, praised and worshipped, then beaten and fucked. A cycle of violence and lust and tenderness. All the incredible details. I’ve fantasized about it. I’ve fantasized about you, even though we’ve never met. I swore if I was ever in the same room, I’d-” she stopped, looking scared to finish her sentence.
Henry leaned in, unsure of what to think about what he just heard. Remembering Victoria, the tiny thing, how they had fallen into such a potent dynamic from that first meeting. How she both submitted to him in so many ways and yet at the same time demanded his worship.
Elena, on the other hand, was perhaps four inches taller than Henry in her heels. She was thickly curved and powerfully built. An amazon. Like her body, her demeanor was completely different than the petite and bratty Victoria. Elena seemed constrained. She seemed to be forcing out the somewhat shocking words she was delivering to him.
“If you were ever in the same room as me, you’d what?”
She took a deep breath. “I don’t know, I guess, I’d offer myself to you. Is that a strange way of phrasing it?”
Henry remained relatively calm. It was his way. He was a bit unflappable and it was part of his charm. It was part of how he created an air of control, but it was difficult when faced with the vulnerability in her eyes and the weight of her words. His eyes moved to her plump lips, stained in dark red. He glanced down to her cleavage, a deep inviting line. Then her hips and thighs. A goddess offering herself up.
“It’s a remarkably tempting way to phrase it,” he said, after a moment of consideration. Then he sipped his Scotch once more. “What specifically drew you to Victoria’s story.”
“It was the look in her eyes when she told me about it. How when she talked about you her gaze went sort of far away. I remember how specific she was about what you did to her. How the whole time she felt worshipped, even when you were tying her up and spanking her and using her,” she said, moving closer as her voice went to a whisper.
Henry felt the warmth of her body and smelled some familiar perfume. It was intoxicating. That and the fact that he was a man who enjoyed hearing about himself.
“You wear the same perfume as she did, don’t you?” Elena’s eyes went wide and she nodded her head very slightly. “It smells different on you. That chemistry is very interesting. How a scent mixes with someone’s skin and pheromones and all of that.”
She seemed surprised and moved that he knew her perfume.
“My experiences with submission have always involved me being so ready to give myself to someone, but the other person ending up being impatient or ungrateful or just not particularly talented. And pain, well, I always want pain with my pleasure. I just don’t usually know how to ask for it. There is always the fear of giving someone too much power and them really hurting you. Body or heart.”
She moved even closer to him and he closed the distance until their legs touched and she was whispering into his ear.
“I don’t know. The way Victoria talked about you just made you sound ideal. And maybe even the fact that you both let it go after that brief affair. Like you both got exactly what you wanted and any more would just sour things. One perfect experience. I’ve thought about that over and over again.”
Henry nodded, his lip brushing against her cheek. She shivered against him. “You paint a vivid picture. Did Victoria know how her story affected you?”
The question seemed to surprise her. She looked down and considered it. “I don’t know. I mean, she always seemed more worldly than me. She always seemed to know what I was thinking, but she never really brought it up. She did tell me everything though, in such detail. We usually didn’t speak so intimately and frankly. And, well, she also showed me the marks. I think that’s what really burned it into my memory.”
“The marks?” he asked. He put his drink down on the nearby table and his hand rested on her hip. She leaned into his touch, sighing a little as if it was something she had desperately needed.
“The fingerprint bruises on her thighs and her breasts. The purple and blue on her ass, like a nebula. She said it was from your hand and your belt. It was the first time she really let me look at her body like that. I mean, we were roommates, but it was different, close up, almost touching.”
His hand tightened on her hip a little. “Was it only her experiences that you wanted or did you desire Victoria?”
Elena met his eyes and for the first time let out a little laugh. “Of course I wanted her. God, you remember what she was like. Everyone wanted to fuck Victoria.”
He laughed too and the break in the tension felt like a breath of fresh air. He let go of her hip and reached for his drink.
“You don’t have to stop touching me. I like your hands on me,” she whispered, with a surprising amount of longing in her voice.
Henry looked around. “Yes, but the crowd is thinning. I think we’ll have to go soon.” She met his gaze more boldly. “I could go home with you. I could be your pet for a while, the way she was.”
He studied her for a moment. The contrast of her boldness and her shyness. Her tall striking form, the swell of her hips, the directness of her offer.
“I think Victoria was a very particular pet. I might like to know exactly what kind of pet you would be, but alas, we just met. I’m afraid worship doesn’t come from a single conversation. I’m going to send you home to sleep on it. If you still think you would be interested in earning your own marks, you can give me a call. Then we can perhaps see,” he said, taking a crisp white business card out of the inside pocket of his jacket and handing it to her.
“I’ll call,” she said, biting her bottom lip again. Then she leaned forward and her red lips touched his ear. “I would like to earn your marks and your worship.”
As they parted, he smiled broadly. “That’s a good start.”