Below is an excerpt from Fifty Writers on Fifty Shades of Grey, reprinted with permission from the authors. Part one can be found here, what follows is part two, in which the contributors delineate a scene.
By ChrisMarks and Lia Leto
Chris: One of our favorite scenes begins with my tying or chaining Lia to a St. Andrews cross in preparation for a flogging. It may begin with her wearing some clothing, but frequently I will tell her to strip. Sometimes I will undress her. I use the former strategy to build tension and uncertainty, which of course also builds Lia’s excitement. If my goal is to increase our romantic connection, I will undress Lia myself while gazing at her and caressing her body.
Once Lia is secured facing the cross, I check to see that she is relatively comfortable and, most of all, safe, making sure she does not have any restrictions that could end the scene prematurely. It will be my intention to hurt her but not to harm her. When I am feeling more romantic, I may begin with some kisses to her shoulders, whispering tender words, or sensuously caressing and teasing her. If I have begun the scene in a more brutish manner, I may be rough with Lia but will give her one or two loving touches to reassure her that I am caring for her.
I begin Lia’s flogging by draping my matched set of floggers over her shoulders and letting the tips rest on her breasts. I watch as she leans her face into the leather to inhale their sweet, musky scent. I drag the floggers slowly toward me and trail them down her back. I caress her body softly several times with each flogger. This warm introduction often brings goose bumps to Lia’s skin and even the occasional shudder. The sensuous dance of leather on skin begins. Starting slowly, I bring the floggers down on her body. I am focused on two things: where I land each blow and how she reacts to the impact. I watch to see if she flinches or tenses, stretches into the sensations or shies away from them. I can vary the blows, the timing between them, and the locations, changing the quality of the impacts by increasing the intensity, the rhythm, and the duration with which the floggers land on her skin. I render sharp stings by grazing Lia’s body with just the tips of the flogger. Laying on more length of the leather results in heavy thud impacts. My ritual of flogging follows a pattern that is fairly traditional, with milder blows leading to heavier ones followed by a pause during which I reconnect with my lover before I begin again. With each pause I will do something soft and tender; I might trickle a feather-touch of my fingers from the nape of her neck down her spine, or offer an encouraging word or a kiss. In that moment I gauge Lia’s breathing and ascertain how well she is experiencing the scene thus far. Each series of impacts brings forth a biochemical response in Lia’s body, especially endorphins, which are her body’s natural painkillers. By playing with the timing of each series of blows, I am able to effectively give Lia a natural high, which not only feels good to her but also makes it possible for her to accept more severe sensations with increasing pleasure. After twenty to forty minutes I will often switch to using either my long singletail whip or two of my Dragon’s Tongue whips. I begin as gently as the whips allow. The sensations are sharp and sting Lia even when I am stroking her softly.
Watching Lia is a pleasure; she is my lovely goddess. I thrill to see her body respond to my floggers and whips. And then there are her sounds. Her whimpers make me smile as they remind me of the sounds she makes when we make love. Our dance, the dance of the Dominant and submissive, continues for an hour or more. I have never timed one of our scenes, as I am so focused on throwing my floggers and whips on Lia, on how she looks and reacts, and the wonderful sounds she makes. I lose all sense of time; I am deep in a state of flow; my intention and attention on Lia is palpable, my energy is loving and challenging and deeply committed to bringing her all manner of sensation and pleasure. In our scene, I am the conductor of the orchestra, the leading man, and the choreographer of a spontaneous ballet that builds to a glorious crescendo for us both.
Lia: The beginning of a scene sets the tone for our activities to come, and all my senses are on high alert. Chris will usually speak softly but firmly to me as he secures my body to a cross, table, or other equipment. With my arms and legs in ropes or chains, I realize that escape is futile and begin my dreamy descent into “sub-space,” a state of mental and physical being wherein my mind and body experience waves of release by way of a vast spectrum of hard and soft sensations.
Chris usually starts our scenes by flogging me. The gentle brushes of the long, leather strips against my back and shoulders at first feel like a soothing massage. I relax and sway to the rhythm of his strokes. He frequently stops to caress me, to kiss my face and my neck, and I feel his love in this attention. He continues the flogging, combining both hard and gentle impact on my back, buttocks and legs, and I sense the heat rising in my skin. My muscles pulse with energy and I find myself craving equally the heavy thudding of Chris’ floggers and the pillow softness of his kisses. When he steps away from me, I miss his breath on my back and gird myself in anticipation of the next round of blows.
Suddenly I writhe at the first crack of a sweet new pain as he uses one of his whips. And then another. Back and forth the blows rein, and I writhe uncontrollably beneath two whips. The pain slices and flares reliably, then dissipates, echoing throughout my body. From excruciation to relaxation, tides of intensity wash over me again and again. I can hear my blood pounding as it courses through my veins. My cries and whimpers erupt in counterpoint to the cracks of the whips and I am an instrument in the symphony of sounds around me.
Throughout it all, I feel Chris’ laser-sharp focus on me. Once he has turned me around to face him, I suffer his lashing on my breasts, belly, and thighs. My eyes are riveted on him and I marvel at his artistry, in awe of the swirling arcs he creates with his whips. I want to please him; to outlast the pain of the stings, to make him proud of me. The intensity of the lashes rises and falls with my breath. Seconds could be minutes or hours, as I’ve lost all sense of time and place. When finally my legs quiver beneath me and my knees give way, Chris comes to me and embraces me. He kisses my face and my neck. He is smiling at me as he quickly frees me from my bonds and wraps me in his strong arms.
Our post-scene process of reconnecting is very important to us. In the afterglow of our shared delight, we admire the resulting marks on Lia’s skin, both of us pleased that the crimson evidence of our play will remain on her for several days. Reveling in a natural high that will last for hours, we snuggle and share our feelings about the scene and our love for each other.
We are grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the national conversation sparked by the trilogy. The current mainstreaming of BDSM sexuality encourages us that the general public’s curiosity will lead to greater acceptance of alternative styles of loving. While Fifty Shades is arguably not great literature or even great BDSM, it does feature several aspects of BDSM that are important: consent, negotiation, and BDSM as components of a caring and loving relationship.
We feel blessed to have found in each other a partner that honors and nurtures all the aspects of our lives: the professional, the mundane, and the intimate. We hope that those who enjoyed reading Fifty Shades are equally blessed and inspired to find fun and creative ways to live and love.