"The tide is coming in. Dragons couldn't stop it now." -- Menolly, in Anne McCaffery's Dragonsong
This entry may set a new high water mark in "violently personal." There is nothing in it I do not wish to remember; there is nothing in it that is not mine. There will be quite a bit of detail. The squeamish are invited to move along to the next, safer entry.
elflet and I went to Folsom Street Fair yesterday. Imagine a four-block-long street party with thousands of queers, perverts, leathermen and -women, dykes, fairies with black leather wings, drag of all kinds, street theater. Completely nude men wandering around, no one giving them a second look. Mostly nude women with electrical tape covering their nipples. (Who says it's just the Taliban who is afraid of the power of women? But I digress.) Vendors of every conceivable form of sex toy, SM equipment, costume. Charity flogging areas. Only in San Francisco. I love this town.
Background. All background.
I hardly ever dress up. I hardly ever want to dress up. But this was a special occasion, and so I dragged out the leather vest which I had custom made at Stormy Leather so long ago, and damn if it didn't fit. Lacing it up was a job, but -- it worked. I was in a very pleasant state of shock. Leather cock ring on my left wrist, of course. Brass rat on my right hand. (It was nice looking at my hands. This is how they are supposed to look.) Formerly black pants. Black riding boots, just because I like the way I walk in them (even though the Tevas are more practical for a long-walking day).
Kawaii dressed up too. I'd brought him a choice of collars and leashes (ever heard a grown man purr?), and I requested he wear his PVC jeans, because he looks hot in them. (He is hot in them, he says, and it was blistering in the Mission yesterday, but he wore them for me anyway. This is the beginning of a theme. Pay attention.) Finally, he chose to wear a purple silk shirt that has been dedicated to feed Splendor at some future date (the flirt), and a collar and lead improvised out of bits of Petit Point's lovely black bridle.
Hey. I had all the eye candy I needed right there. We almost didn't make it out of the house.
Folsom, says Kawaii (and I agree with him) is for checking out the vendors, admiring the scenery, and hanging out with people you know. So that's what we did. We prearranged an emergency ripcord, in case we ran into his ex and he wanted to be removed from the situation (as it happens, it wasn't needed, but it was a good thing to talk about.) We checked out vendors (deliberately, in some cases, to spread rumors :-). We hung around the Odyssey area for a while, hugging and talking with friends, where I found myself asking a gorgeous butch acquaintance (and friend of Kawaii's) to tutor me in Japanese rope bondage, using a certain elf as canvas. (Yum. Oh, was that the outside voice?) I got vastly and deeply sucked in at the Heartwood booth, by a wholly seductive little black-and-purple number in buffalo hide (18" tails). It came home with me and is now named "Distraction."
Look, she said parenthetically, if you started out as a horse-crazy kid who could -- and still can -- lose hours in tack shops, and has very pleasant associations with the smell of leather -- and then you discovered sex and figured out you could combine the two -- you'd do it too. Or at least think about it hard. *wink*
"I tell you three times, and what I tell you three times is true."
We were by the Odyssey booth still when I teased him a little about the 'M' word (no, not "marriage:" "mine"). After that last blistering scene, I have been very careful about using that word to him, about him, for reasons good and sufficient that I don't need to record to remember. But I'd joke about refusing to use it. So when he put his arms around my neck and whispered, "You may," I felt like I'd been flattened by a playful blue-eyed ocean wave. *crash* Planets dance in their orbits with less intensity and no more majesty than this man radiates when he says what he means. A slow revelatory burn began to wash over me. I didn't know everything immediately, but I did know that I was saving this word for a ritual context, the only way I could adequately respond to the gift of another's heart.
We came, we went, we walked the length of the show in the blistering air and the blessed shade. Dancing through a mob scene like that, tied together by a leash was a remarkable experience. With Sable, of course, if she hits the end of the leash, she hits it; it doesn't hurt her (especially on the ordinary buckle collar) and it means she's made a mistake; there's a certain justice to it. But I've never even attempted to work her in a crowd that thick. With Kawaii, in contrast, I only want the leash to tighten under my full and conscious control. And in general I am impatient with crowds and prefer to slide through them (although sometimes I just crank up the "presence" knob a few notches and bull my way through.) I had to trust that any hole I created, he could follow me through. (Once or twice, I passed the leash around an immovable obstacle, which made him giggle.) When the crowds thinned out, I'd grope him as we went. He'd gasp. Shameless. (It's a good thing.)
"Sushi-flavored kisses are better than vitamin-flavored kisses."
Tired and hungry and achy around the edges, we retreated to the car, swapped out of the more awkward bits of costume, and retreated to the Metreon for one of the more delicious sashimi dinners I have ever experienced. Food and talk. Pleasure and attention. Power flowing between equals.
We nixed a movie (9:30 appointment at Watercourse Way; mustn't be late), wandered around the mall a bit, returned to fetch the car. In the full elevator, I doubt anyone noticed my hand in his hair, pulling him back across my shoulder, my other hand whispering promises for later to his nipples.
(I'd spotted a T-shirt earlier: "You're just pissed because my lifestyle looks cooler than your lifestyle.")
Driving to Watercourse Way, we talked about things difficult and easy. I asked about that moment in the street, hours before. ("Did something change, or did you just notice the bud had opened?" He responded immediately, "I just noticed the bud was open.") He talked about his hopes, about the wishes that were being fulfilled, even the ones he hadn't admitted to anyone but himself. I talked about the things I had feared, about not being the kind of dominant he needed, and we explored that. We talked about how our play styles mesh, even though if you went down a static checklist of key words, we don't really have a lot of overlap. We talked about how much of the pleasure is planning the scene, opening up things you can't usually admit, exploring the new and unfamiliar. (Back to the equine metaphor: when you're a horse-crazy kid, you don't much care if you're learning dressage or reining or hunt seat or saddle seat. You're just ecstatic because you get to spend time with a horse. Similarly, I don't particularly care whether the medium we use for our exchange is corsetry or predicament bondage or flogging or perverted uses for simple gym exercises. I care that I can make him fly, and that power is my turn-on.)
We made it to Palo Alto early enough that we went shopping at Whole Foods, a block away. I fed him bits of pears, of white peaches. We chose an avocado and some of the peaches, consulted via cellphone with his wife about anything she needed, shared the scent of organic raspberries, bought scones for his family for breakfast. (I am beginning to believe that mjr has a point when he insists that good food is better than good sex.)
We proceeded to get soggy. But that's a tale for later.