reassurance-painspell-masochism

“So, recap. You want reassurance about causing pain, I like painspells. You’re going to hit me with painspells and voice whatever insecurities you might want to, I’m going to enjoy myself and reassure you. Your safeword is cyan, in which case I should stop reassuring you and do something else. I use the same one if I need to stop reassuring for whatever reason. I’m otherwise not doing anything that requires a special safeword, so I say ‘not that much’ and such if I need to. Red and yellow remain as general emergency safewords. Does that sound right?”

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[I know I haven’t tended to post fiction here, but.

Very unfinished bit(s) of a piece; set in a kind of cross between a high-tech-fantasy world of mine and BDSM scene things.

Narrator is male in my head.] 

 

Honestly, this is what I get for airing my woes to Marcella. Unfamilar city, time, nothing to do…

“Well, what do you do at home?” She was packing while talking to me, off to one of her concerts.

“I go to the dungeon.” Like she didn’t know.

She glances at the camera from across the room.

“Well, it’s not that small a city, I’m sure they have one. Just look it up! Anyway, I really do have to run…”

Once the video closed, the search bar seemed to stare at me like it was going to follow me around the room next. Not that there was much in the room. Some nights, the data hook is about all I could want, but some nights it really isn’t.

So, a search and transit and an entrance later, here I was.


{some time, events, and meeting a person later (first line here is not the narrator’s)}


“So, recap. You want reassurance about causing pain, I like painspells. You’re going to hit me with painspells and voice whatever insecurities you might want to, I’m going to enjoy myself and reassure you. Your safeword is cyan, in which case I should stop reassuring you and do something else. I use the same one if I need to stop reassuring for whatever reason. I’m otherwise not doing anything that requires a special safeword, so I say ‘not that much’ and such if I need to. Red and yellow remain as general emergency safewords. Does that sound right?”

I nod, then feel like I should be saying it out loud. “Yeah – yeah, it does.”

“Excellent!” She sits down on the bench and swings her legs. “Shall we start?” Oh god. But this nervousness is part of the idea, in this case. I take a breath.

“Yeah. Let’s start.” She flashes a stronger smile than usual.

“5 4 3 2 1 go.”

I swallow, breathe again.

“I’m, um, not sure about this. What if I hurt you?”

“You’re not going to hurt me. You’re using a very straightforward painspell, it doesn’t go high enough that it could do damage. You just demonstrated in front of the DM that you could can cast and control it perfectly well, and we just checked to make sure there aren’t any adverse reactions with me. If it’s too much and you can’t fix it for some reason I can grab the analgesic again and I’ll be completely fine while we sort it out. If you turn out to be secretly evil the analgesic will still work and we have a DM team right there to put a stop to things. They know how to deploy shields, protecting and containing. And if something does go wrong we have a great medical response record here and we will deal with it.”

I nod my head, memories coming up with the words. That was actually reassuring. Like to a rhythm, she taps her fingers up and down the strap of the analgesic. Across her shoulder, holding it in place on her chest for hopefully easy and intuitive grabbing, if needed. I’d seen it in effect just minutes ago, holding my spell while she tightened her hand on it, the spell doing its work to no actual effect at all. Which was exactly what should have happened, but still – magic was seriously amazing sometimes.

“But I mean – any time you see it, in history like – bad people use painspells. It’s always terrible.” She’s stopped playing with the strap, put her hand down next to her.

“That’s because of how they’re using them. It’s not an inherent property of painspells any more than it’s an inherent property of canes” she nods sideways toward the trio at the table “moving things around” another nod “or sex for that matter.”


{somewhat later, one branch of the story. (first line here is the narrator’s)}


“Cyan.” She’d exhaled and started untensing back when I’d cut the spell. With barely a pause she swings her legs down, turns, looks at me.

“You OK? What’s wrong?” I clench my eyes shut.

“Cyan. I’m sorry.”

“There’s nothing to be sorry for.” I open my eyes and she’s there, standing and keeping distance. Maybe a minute passes. I don’t note it. “Touch?” I nod, prompted to reaction, and she leads me back toward the bench, sits down on it next to me, pausing to telegraph each move before making it. “If you want to talk it’s OK. If you don’t want to talk it’s OK.”

Some re negotiation thoughts sparked by a post

{this is a reblog of a post, and I thought WordPress would put the original post at the beginning, but apparently it puts it at the end. Not sure why, but, as such, scroll down to see original.}

[Not an essay or anything, just – some thoughts that showed up having seen this which I am trying to put into words and not doing very well.
Did not read linked article (the Creepy Dom one).]

I’m very much one of those ‘communication and negotiation and discussing and etc our kinks with my partner is something I value and really want to do not just for utilitarian use but as its own thing which I love’ people. Like, I’ve had literal communication fantasies and everything.

I often don’t and haven’t felt space for this. From domism, certainly and very much (not going to go further into this right now). But also in general. For talking, for having all the thoughts on myself and sharing them, for the other side of this. I don’t see it represented. I receive the idea that it’s not OK. I receive the idea that talking is a burden and a chore and no one actually wants to do it. I don’t see representations of a positive place for it. (And, to be clear – if someone *doesn’t* want to listen to mine, isn’t interested in/would not want doing that themselves or sharing, I wouldn’t want to do that with them or etc. This is something I’d *only* want to do with someone who also wanted it. But socially received ‘not OK’ for me feels like the idea that no one would want this and it’s bad/imposing/presumptuous for me to think someone would etc. Which is where this hurts me).

And, I definitely get this feeling when I see quotes like this. When things like this are just taken for granted etc. (I also get it when I run into ‘negotiation can be sexy!’ type things that again don’t leave space for wanting not-that. (Like seeing a lot of things going ‘it’s ok, bread can totally be made to taste like pastries’ when I like bread and and would like to have bread. (Which, to be clear, wanting your bread to taste like pastries is *also* a valid want and thing to want materials on.)))

I think there’s fairly clearly a typical mind fallacy thing going on here. I’ve read writings about how things work for them by people who write quotes like this, and this is very much a how-it-works and experience etc that exists and people have and etc, and it is valid to be/have. (Even as my experience also exists and I have it and this is valid). (Note, this is different from ‘negotiation is boring so let’s just do things and I don’t care if I hurt my partner’, which is not at all valid. Or ok. It’s valid for negotiation etc to *not be a thing people are in and of itself into and excited about*. Much like I don’t have to be excited by obeying safety traffic laws, but I very much have to abide by them. If I can find a way to make this fun for me, I can be happy about that, but if I can’t, then I need to either do it un-funly or not drive (general I, not specifically-I-I.))

And I wouldn’t want to do the typical mind fallacy thing in return – much like there are things other people like and are excited by and I don’t and am not, there are things I like and am excited by that other people don’t and am not. And I can and do want more representation and material and etc re how it is for me (the what-ifs of this post give me yes feelings!). But I don’t want to act like everyone is or should be like me in this.

Which makes me think, also, that this can be useful to conceptualize as one of those things where people for whom something is utilitarian have different needs in materials etc than people for whom it’s a/the thing-they’re-into. (Even as there’s the important difference caused by the fact that the ‘utilitarian’ purpose of negotiation is *trying to not hurt or violate your partner*). Just like people who are into bondage don’t have the same needs in materials as people who have found that they keep almost falling off a table when doing their actual target activity and would like to try restraints to solve this. But, for instance both groups need to know things about not cutting off circulation with restraints.

(I also very much want more material with negotiation, and really wish it was out there more and I could find it, because that’s not one of those things I just automatically knew or know how to do, and examples, aside from validating OK-ness, are also really major for that. (And I’ve gone looking before, and haven’t found nearly enough, so.))

The Ace Theist

author of A Field Guide to Creepy Dom*: It can be really hot, at first, because let’s face it– none of us fantasize about negotiations and limits.

me: First of all, speak for yourself, but second of all — what if we did, though?  What if we changed how we think about “negotiations” and “limits”?  What if we were no longer conceptualizing them as an un-fun technical obligation, a thing for getting over with?  What if we centered and celebrated and embraced communication about preferences as a treasured part of getting to know your partner and yourself?  What if that was something to look forward to?  What if that was part of the fantasy?  What if I wrote a flash fiction piece that was just about a couple discussing what they wanted?

*cw for rape and abuse narratives

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