A Present To Myself

Man's naked chest.

I can’t stop myself from playing with them – not, I admit, that I’ve tried very hard.

It was a joke, the first time I suggested it. He had been browsing the internet in bed, choosing pictures of women for me to quietly ogle – I liked to see his tastes, liked to know what got him hard – and I was looking over his shoulder. One of them caught my eye, even before he sent it. I tapped the screen of his laptop gently, playfully, just at the girl’s nipple. ‘One day,’ I said, ‘I’m going to do that to you. And won’t you look pretty when I do?’

He hadn’t said anything after that, but that might have had more to do with the fact that I started gently nibbling at his neck, replacing any answer he might have given with moans and whimpers. He always did have a soft spot for having his neck teased.

But the idea seemed to take hold. The pictures continued, but now almost all the girls seemed to have pierced nipples: some bars, some rings; some simple steel and others more ornate. Just a coincidence, I was sure he’d say if I ever asked him about it – but I didn’t. What would be the point? After two years, I could read him like a book.

I made the appointment for him six weeks before my birthday. The way he blushed when I told him what I wanted from him made it clear to me that it was the right decision – that it wasn’t something forced or coerced, but something he wanted just as much as I did.

Poor boy, so ashamed to admit what he wanted – and why.

I gave him the option to tell me to cancel the appointment, but he never did. Some days I could tell that he came close – when the reality of it crashed up against the fantasy, when the thought of the momentary pain overwhelmed the promise of pleasure – but he kept his resolve. He knew what it meant for me. He knew what it meant for him.

Six weeks to heal, they had told me – not even him. Keep them clean. Use an antiseptic if need be. Keep his hands off them as far as possible.

It wasn’t easy to go without my favourite toy for so long, but I had timed it for a reason. When he was healed, when he was back to where I needed him to be, I’d have him just the way I wanted him. What better way to celebrate my birthday than that?

He got me other gifts, of course, even though I told him not to. Nothing big, nothing flashy – a book I’d been putting off buying, a small bottle of the perfume I had been wearing on our first date (so thoughtful…) – but he knew what my main present was. He had been teasing me without knowing it for weeks now. Every time he had slept in the nude, his firm torso pressed against my naked back as we spooned; every time I had seen him slip on a shirt before work… all of it, promising something that was tantalisingly close and yet just out of reach. I had found my mind drifting away during the day, distracted in the knowledge that he was out there somewhere, dressed in the immaculate suit and clean-pressed shirt that I had seen him wearing when he left – and that under that pristine, businesslike exterior, two small steel bars marked him out as mine. It was our little secret, safe in my imagination and the moans he no doubt had to suppress when the cotton rubbed against them.

Six weeks, I told myself. A birthday surprise. A treat for yourself. You can wait that long, surely?

I had surprised myself by finding that, in fact, I could – but now it was time to collect.

‘Hands up,’ I said. ‘Don’t move until I tell you to.’

He nodded, and did as he was told. It wasn’t a position he was unused to; his fingers wrapped around the metal loops and whorls of the headboard, finding that familiar, comfortable spot. He knew instinctively that he’d be there for a while; no need for ropes or cuffs when he was this eager to please.

I leaned down and kissed his neck, tracing a delicate pathway along his collarbone. I felt him shift beneath me, my tiny weight nowhere near enough to hold him down if he decided otherwise – but he never did. He wasn’t fighting against me. He was only fighting against his own desires. When I sat back up, he had his eyes closed, and his lips were trembling as though in some silent prayer.

‘Eyes open,’ I said. ‘I want you to look at me.’

I want your undivided attention – and I know just how to get it.

He kept his gaze on me as I lowered my head to his chest, planting soft little butterfly kisses along his skin. I flicked out a tongue and watched his body shiver with delight.

‘Sensitive?’ I said without stopping, without looking up.

‘Fuck.’ The word came out almost by itself: a long, slow drag on a cigarette. ‘Fuck.’

‘I’ll take that as a yes.’

He nodded. ‘Extremely.’

‘Good.’

He always did love having his chest played with. He had been embarrassed about that too, in the early days – how sensitive the small pink buds of his nipples could be, how easy it was to bring him to full hardness with nothing more than a gentle stroke, a teasing lick, a just-over-the-line-of-painful bite that would make him forget the rest of the world even exists.

I felt his cock stiffen beneath me as I straddled him, suddenly firm against my thigh.

All that, from one little lick…

‘You look beautiful like this, you know,’ I said, tracing a fingernail across the taught muscles of his chest; he worked out, and the work wasn’t in vain. ‘Decorated. All for me.’

The blush that crossed his face just made me want to eat him up.

‘And it is all for me, isn’t it? All because you want to be pretty for me.’

‘Y… yes,’ he stammered.

‘Say it.’

‘I want to be pretty for you.’ I could feel the catch in his breath, but there was no hesitation.

I smiled. ‘Good boy. Such a good boy. And good boys get rewarded.’

I brought my fingers in, achingly close to the bars, and then stopped. He must have known how desperate I was to touch him and feel him writhe beneath me, but it wouldn’t do to let him think that he had any sway – not today, of all days. Sometimes I craved the fight, the back-and-forth of a lovers’ duel, but not now. Now, that was the last thing I wanted.

I watched him lying there, perfectly still, his eyes never leaving mine. I watched him bite his lip as I stroked my finger gently across the top of his nipple, watched it give way into a low, soft whimper as I gripped and pulled – a whole new sensation for him, familiar and yet strange, everything ramped up to eleven.

‘You like that, don’t you?’

‘Y… yes.’

‘Do you want more?’

He nodded, an eager puppy. ‘Please. Always. Please.’

I had denied him long enough, denied myself even longer; the hardness at my thigh was more than I could stand. I lifted myself off his hips just for a moment, and then he was inside me.

‘Don’t move,’ I said. ‘Don’t you dare move. Not an inch, OK? You’re here for me. All mine.’ He nodded, and I gave him a playful tap on the cheek; not quite a slap, not quite a tease. ‘What did I just say? Not. An. Inch.’

He learned.

I enjoyed the sensation of fullness, the thickness of his cock as it twitched inside me. The way I could tell the difference between his reaction to the gentle tease and the painful pinch. I bit my lip as I watched him struggle to keep his calm.

I love you.

The way he whimpered and moaned as I rose him. The way he let me mark him as mine. The way, when we were done, I would rest my head in his chest and state at those fresh adornments and know absolutely that with every beat of his heart there was nowhere he’d rather be.

This beautiful boy.

This beautiful toy.

Marked, and mine.

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Reflecting

Innocent Girl

He held me in place on my knees, not facing towards him as usual but facing away from him, out into the room.

‘Watch,’ he said, directing my gaze forward.

The hands of the girl on her knees in front of me were behind her head, fingers intertwined; her lips were red with lipstick he had already smeared. I could see the look of desire on her face, even as she found it hard to meet my gaze. This is turning you on, I thought. Isn’t it?

Dirty little thing.

I could practically see her cunt dripping with excitement – and why shouldn’t it? He had been teasing her all day. He had been doing everything he could to make sure that when the moment finally came to play, she would be ready. He had promised her the world in soft kisses and stinging slaps, and she had agreed willingly, knowing there was nowhere she would rather be.

The girl’s body was marked for him, by him: a subtle pinkness on her skin that would blossom into a rich purple given the passage of time. A collar around her neck made it clear that she was owned and wanted, but those bruises were what kept my eye. His love for her was written on her body, a love delivered wordlessly and saved for enjoyment later, if she ever any doubt. She could

‘Don’t you think my little slut is pretty?’ he asked, a low growl in my ear.

I nodded, and I felt his fingers digging into my arm. ‘No,’ he said. ‘Say it.’

‘I think your little slut is pretty.’

He knew how hard that was for me to say, how resistant my body was to admitting that I agreed with him. How much time I spent running away from it, no matter how he pushed the issue.

‘Again, pet.’

‘I think your little slut is pretty.’

‘Again.

‘I think your little slut is pretty.’

‘Look up. Say it properly.’

I lifted my head – I hadn’t even realised I was looking at the floor; it was just easier that way – and the girl raised her gaze to greet mine.

‘I think your little slut is pretty.’

‘Again.’

‘I think your little slut is pretty.’

I could see the girl blushing, unfamiliar with the compliment – especially from me. Oh, he had told her a thousand times. He would never let her forget it, but hearing it from my lips, in my voice? That was something different entirely. That was almost more than she could stand, and he knew it.

‘Again.’

I felt the words catch in my throat, and watched her look away from me. ‘I…’

‘Say it, pet.’ His grip tightened; firm, not painful, keeping me in place.

‘I think your little slut is pretty.’ That satisfied him, and that satisfied me. He leaned forward and kissed me gently on the forehead. ‘Good girl,’ he said, and for the first time I was able to meet the gaze of my reflection proudly, without shame.

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First Taste

Two glasses of champagne.

The bubbles tickled at her nose as she tipped the thin flute upwards, the crystal so delicate that she thought for a moment that even the simple act of raising it the glass to her lips would be enough to shatter it into a million tiny, piercing shards. She snorted a little at the sensation – so embarrassing – then somehow managed to compose herself.

He was sitting across the table, smiling at her, watching for her reaction. His glass remained untouched. ‘First time?’ he asked.

For a lot of things, she thought. Instead she just nodded.

‘What did you think?’

‘It’s nice. I like it.’ In truth, she found it a little too dry, a little too sharp to be entirely pleasurable. She would have been happier with the taste of her usual bottle of wine, whatever was sweet and light and on sale at the local corner shop on a Friday night – but of course, the company was much better here. She wondered if, perhaps, champagne was a drink that people only pretended to like when they were trying to impress someone important to them, when they were trying to appear worldly, sophisticated, and utterly grown up.

Three dates in, and she hadn’t quite shaken that feeling. Twenty-five years old, and he made her feel like a teenager again. He was older, yes, but not that much older; twelve years, if you rounded down. So how was it that she made her feel like a dumb kid crushing on her teacher? Was it the slight peppering grey in his hair? The cut of his suit: stylish, confident? The way people seemed to listen when he talked, as if by instinct?

‘Well, that’s more than I could say the first time I tried it,’ he said. ‘I couldn’t stand it.’

‘How old were you, your first time?’

‘Eighteen.’

‘And when you tried champagne?’

He laughed at that, and she felt a thrill of pride; it felt good to know she could surprise him still. ‘Also eighteen,’ he said. ‘The same night, in fact. Apparently the two things go together a little better than I thought.’

He knew, of course. He hadn’t pushed her, hadn’t pressured her at all. He had wanted it to be special – hence the dinner in his apartment, the champagne chilled to perfection, the music playing lightly in the background – and it was. She couldn’t have pictured a more perfect moment.

He had joked once about her not wearing panties on a date with him, and she was shocked at how she had considered it. She had always wondered if she would be the kind of girl who’d lean into that if the opportunity ever arose; if, given a man with whom she felt safe enough, she’d sit through dinner or a movie, knowing that there was nothing but air between her pussy and her lover…

When the taxi arrived to pick her up, she had shimmied them down her legs and thrown them into the laundry basket, smoothing down her skirt. She felt daring, free. It would be a surprise for him later, she had thought. Well, later was here now.

Tonight’s the night. Twenty-five years of waiting, and here it was. Worth every second.

He could read her excitement at a distance; it was a different kind of nervousness than he was used to with her. She had started to grow used to him over the past few weeks, to settle into herself in his company, to sound out the first glorious syllables of what the future might hold. She had become… comfortable, and he felt pride in that. He liked that he could put her at ease.

He knelt in front of her, and she felt the touch of his fingers at her ankle – a tap, a gesture, an indication to uncross her legs. She did so.

He was looking up at her, imploringly. Say the word, he seemed to be saying. Say the word and this all stops. We can go back to chatting, to the champagne, to dessert. We can be as we were, for as long as it takes you to be comfortable. A day, a week, a lifetime if necessary. There’s no rush.

There was never a rush; not with him. Everything seemed to happen at just the right pace.

She said nothing. There was nothing to be said.

She parted her knees and, like a groom reveal his bride’s face from beneath a bridal gown, he lifted the hem of her dress.

It’s time.

His gaze was fixed on the smooth skin of her thighs as he pulled the fabric up, up, up, giving her every chance to stop him; he wanted it to be perfect. He paused only when he realised that there was nothing stopping him, no panties in the way to slow his inexorable progress, and she felt him take a deep breath of appreciation.

It was nice, to be looked at that way. To be admired. To be wanted.

He kissed her thigh, parting her legs gently with his hand, and she could feel a cool breeze at her cunt, her wetness impossible to ignore. She wanted nothing more than to be touched there, to be teased

to be fucked

– but he steadfastly took his time; she was his, brand new, and he was going to savour these first moments.

His kisses drew near, his breath warm against her skin – and then, unexpected, the electric first-touch of his tongue. She gripped at the table, worried for an instant that in her ecstasy her nails might carve deep grooves into the varnish, and then steadied herself. She gave a long, slow exhalation, willing her body back under control. Not now, she thought. Fuck, so close… but not now. Not yet. Not so soon. That comes later.

The champagne glass sat just inches from her hand. She watched a thin stream of bubbles rising from the edge, hurtling to the surface and disappearing forever. It felt apt: a momentary lifting, and then nothing.

She hoped there would be more than nothing waiting for her.

He kissed her, down there, and every kiss promised a thousand more; he alternated his kisses with soft, gentle licks that pushed her towards a sensation she had never shared with anyone. He was familiar with her, as experienced as she was innocent. What she suspected, he knew; his reverence was new and strange, but no less comforting for it. She was safe in the hands of an expert.

Fuck…

Her body tightened, and he looked up, concerned.

‘No… please,’ she said, surprised at how weak her voice sounded. ‘Don’t stop.’ Don’t ever stop.

And there was that smile again. ‘Relax,’ he said. ‘Have a drink. Enjoy it. It’s OK.’

Enjoy it. As if she were capable of anything but. And why shouldn’t she?

She let him guide her, his tongue carving out fresh, new pathways of pleasure that she had never considered before, had never been able to reach herself. She felt it rise up out of her, spreading out from his kisses up through her body, separate quanta of joy and lust and longing made just for her, teased out of her one by one…

When it came, it came in waves: no crashing tsunami but a steady, glorious lapping of pleasure that she felt could go on forever. She let out a moan – no embarrassment, not now – and felt her body shiver and shake; her hand reached down, not to pull him close or grasp at his hair but just to touch him, to feel his presence, to remind herself that this man – this beautiful, wonderful man – was the one making her feel this way.

He looked up at her, his brow dappled with exertive sweat, his perfect hair mussed. She leaned down to kiss him and detected the faintest trace of herself on his lips; another unfamiliar taste, but not unpleasant for it. ‘The bedroom?’ he asked.

‘The bedroom,’ she replied.

The drinks could wait.

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The Balcony

Couple embracing.

‘Shh,’ he whispered, his lips close to her ear. ‘Eyes forward.’

She hadn’t heard him come in, hadn’t heard the swipe of the hotel keycard she had left for him at the lobby or the click of the door as it latched closed behind him. She hadn’t heard his soft footsteps on the hardwood as his approached her, predator stalking prey. She hadn’t been aware of his presence until he slipped his hands around her, his fingers entwining with hers, holding her grip against the steel balcony railing. She began to turn quickly – in surprise at the interruption, in need for home – but he stopped her with just a touch.

‘Shh,’ he whispered, his breath warm against her skin. ‘Eyes forward.’

She stared out over the city. The sea of lights had been mesmerising just moments earlier, but now all she wanted was to turn her back to them, to trade the gleam of Paris at night for the kiss of her lover.

Six months. Too long.

Six minutes. Too long.

He tightened his grip, holding her hands in place. You’re here now, his touch seemed to say. Back with me, where you belong. And this time, you’re not going anywhere.

She smiled at that. As if there was anywhere she’d rather be.

She felt the scratch of his stubble at the back of her neck, just below her hairline, just above the fabric of the dress he had asked her to wear for him on their first meeting in what felt like forever. It was his favourite dress; she knew that well enough. She couldn’t count the number of times she had caught him staring at her lasciviously from across the room when she wore it, nor the times he had taken her back home afterwards, away from prying eyes in cities all over the globe. The dress had been left on countless hotel room floors, tossed over chairs, left scrunched up and neglected even as she was stretched out on the bed next to it.

Next to him.

‘Shh,’ he whispered, planting butterfly kisses at the nape of her neck. ‘Eyes forward.’

She felt him stand tall behind her, pressing her body against the balcony railing – a brief moment of panic as she imagined tumbling forward and down, down, down to the street below, losing herself in freefall as she did every time she felt his touch… but then the safety of knowing that he was there with her, that no harm could come to her. His grip on her was absolute. She was safe.

He loosed his fingers from hers, tracing a path gently up her bare arms. She shivered, despite the summer evening; his fingertips were warm, but the faint hairs on her arms rose up in a frisson of need, calling for him. They ran to her shoulders and he pulled her gently backwards, kissing that sacred dimple at her neck. She wondered if he could smell the perfume she had picked out – the light jasmine scent she had been wearing the first time they had made love, when he kissed her in that exact spot and she felt her world catch fire.

‘Shh,’ he whispered, feeling her tense up beneath his touch. ‘Eyes forward.’

She let her eyes fall closed and smiled in the darkness. She could hear the city beneath her, busy even in the small hours of the morning; the steady rumble of traffic was dwarfed by the sound of his breath quickening next to her. She knew that sound: the ragged desperation that made it clear that she wasn’t alone in her desire.

She turned to face him, eyes still pressed firmly shut, and this time he made no move to stop her. She felt his hand on her neck, drawing her near; the stubble of his cheek against the smoothness of her own – and the slow exhalation of six months’ wait finally, finally at a close.

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