- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
Chapter One: Rebirth
Most widows, when they end their mourning, return the proverbial black dress to the closet. Me? I did just the opposite. I walked into mine and pulled one out.
It was a Richard Tyler leather-and-lace number--skin tight and serious. I hadn't worn it in ages, but the smell of leather still provoked a predictable response from me; it melted me into sporting a knowing, determined smile. And I smiled, not just because its luring scent beckoned me, but because it was the dress of an off-duty domina--daring and seductive, with a hint of the aloof and unattainable. What it really said was, "I'm hot. Take notice. But please, worship from afar."
To my way of thinking, the dress was the upper class cousin to the lowlifes of vinyl, latex, and PVC. It was an outfit that I could wear to an elite gathering and proclaim my presence without having to acknowledge a damn thing. Especially the fact that I loved to slum it. The trailer-trash cousins had, in actuality, taken up squatters' rights in the back of my closet.
So, Italian makeup in place and delicate under-thingies either protecting or promoting various womanly cleavages, my body awaited the dress. Peering into the dresser mirror, I knew how it would work. My long red hair would pour over its straight bodice with Godiva-like mystery, and a natural sadistic and sexual brilliance would flash in my blue eyes, set off against my pale, near-porcelain skin. It never failed to happen.
All that remained was finding a man to appreciate it. A man who would not just fall to his knees in admiration, but would do so, quaking and instinctively ready--a man who would shiver and moan if I so much as extended myfingertips and raked his skin with my light touch. And if he could melt at the touch of said fingertip, then I could only imagine how he'd react when I commanded him to open his mouth and await the insertion of a stylish, stiletto heel.
I smiled at the thought of it as the luxurious, decadent drive of a woman wanting to reclaim her power filled me.
Not that I hadn't tasted power before. After all, the leather number hung in my closet for a reason. My husband, the dear pet--wait, my dearly departed, deeply missed pet--had been a surgeon exhausted by the life-or-death decisions of his profession. When Paul came home from his professional torment, the last thing he wanted to taste was control. I know it's a cliché, and a bad one at that, but all he wanted was a sip of brandy and a gulp of absolution. And I had been more than happy to oblige him. After all, he had catered to my every need and desire, whether it was a luxury car of my own or working his tongue until it was numb to satiate my baser needs. He had even had enough submissive fortitude to endure an enforced chastity during those early, dark days of doctor's life when his practice consumed his soul more than I could. He had given all for my happiness.
Until he died.
But because he had devoted himself to my every happiness, I had tasted my own strength and embraced it. What had started as courtship games to lighten the responsibility of intimacy soon grew to touch something wild and innate within me. So I took to slipping my feet into mean stiletto heels, to enshrine my legs and torso in leather, to hide my beauty (at times, mind you) behind a mask.
I was more than delighted to seize Paul's sexual expression. When I took the burden of sex from him and allowed him to grovel at my feet, I was, in fact, exercising a great ability that I had discovered within myself. Every time I extended my heeled foot for his adoration, every time I made him beg his way up my leg to worship my womanly essence, every time I rebuffed him and made him start over, I was, in fact, saying, "I understand, I accept, and I want it too."
The marriage, if you must know, was ideal.
But now I stood before my dress, inspecting it. Its pitch-black leather and moody lace proclaimed the very image I wanted to project, but the erotic shudders of my submissive husband, now removed from both my happiness and my power, were all I could think of. Tears welled up and threatened my make-up.
It hadn't been easy, as you can guess. The chaos and agony of his sudden death, the numbing ritual of his funeral, and the barrage of people wanting to help had been whirlwind enough, but then my stoicism collapsed into an endless crying jag, just as the law descended to ante up the assets and liabilities via the rubber-stamp rodeo of probate court. No, none of it had been easy.
Still, it had been easier to cope with that than with the silence that had followed. The muted presence of Paul's prized Jag, our first luxury item, in the garage. The echoing loneliness of my footfalls in our massive, old, colonial home. The deep, still quiet of the nights--nights alone in our spindle bed. It was all too much.
Months upon months have passed. Now, at least, I can laugh a little when I think of the bed. Paul's bondage cuffs remain chained in place, the way another dead man's wardrobe might hang in a closet. I haven't yet considered packing away that part of our life together.
I smiled, haunted and haughty. That's what made our marriage so good; we understood each other. Paul had instinctively grasped a sense of my dominance even before I was aware of it, and I had sensed his acquiescence, even before I knew I could exploit it. In the chaos of courtship during residency, we had explored our deepest fantasies and discovered that we were made for each other.
Missing Paul, however, would not restore my life. This, I finally knew. It was time to live again, I told myself as I blinked back my tears and regained my composure.
I threw off my bathrobe and slipped into the dress. It gathered around me perfectly, clinging to my breasts, hugging my waist and my hips. Its spaghetti straps accented my slender neck and my long, slender arms. What length it had would attract anyone with a thing for legs.
Time to live again, I reiterated. I couldn't deny myself any longer. If Paul had given me one gift that rose above all others, it was the knowledge that once I had tasted and savored my own sexual powers, I could never again turn back. I could never imagine myself satisfied by sex without power.
And I had lived without Paul, without love and devotion, without sex, and without power for far, far too long a time.