Tag: fantasy

Erotic Fiction: The Gift

Black and white photograph of vintage decadence at a black tie party for The Gift post by Malin James

Photograph by Marco Sanges (2014)

On the evening of her birthday, Sabine’s husband gave her the gift of a slave.

So kind, you might be thinking. So generous to give his wife another man to fuck. Sabine’s husband was, after all, several decades her senior, and the possessor of certain appetites that did not suit his foreign wife. The gift was surely a generous act, especially at that time, when flesh cost more than gold.

Generous, so generous….

Generous. But not kind.

Sabine’s husband trafficked in humans, a practice she abhorred. The gift, presented with torturous ceremony before a roomful of guests, was an insult—one so subtle that her husband would look like a king while delivering a barb she couldn’t ignore.

Unhappy but silent, Sabine watched a handler lead the blindfolded slave to the center of the room, trailed by a clutch of cilevore—sentient bonds that resembled the vines of a thick, tenacious plant. Another cilevore bound his wrists, making itself both the manacle and the leash by which he was led.

Sabine eyed the creatures, which brought to mind a cluster of eels with their slithering, muscled strength. Swallowing her disgust, she turned her attention to the slave, who was tall and blond, like the men of her faraway home.

They had brought him in naked, of course. A leather cord—the sign of his station—encircled his scrotum and cock. It was a pretty picture he made. Against her wishes, Sabine’s body quickened. The slave was beautiful and masculine—the most masculine thing she had seen since she’d come to her husband’s house. Her husband liked boys and soft, young girls. This slave, with his hard, uncompromising frame, would never have been bought if not for her.

“Well, my darling,” Sabine’s husband said, pitching his voice to the room, “care to try your new toy?”

The guests tittered. A slave such as this was only meant for one thing. Who wouldn’t want to watch?

Sabine lifted her head, winter pale and calm, as the handler sat the slave down in a carved wooden chair. Then he signaled to the cilevore, which slithered up over the slave, coiling around his ankles and wrists and binding him in place. Unable to see through the blindfold he wore, the slave flexed against his bonds. The cilevore tightened in response. Noticing the shift in the bonds, the handler slapped his cock. Once. Twice. The slave’s jaw tightened. Satisfied, the handler stepped back.

The slave’s breathing was deep and even; his face calm beneath the mask. But to the watchful, (and Sabine was watchful), the man was in distress.

The cilevore flexed, addressing the strain his body could not hide—pulse, heart rate, nerves…. He vibrated, clearly longing to rip the creatures off. And yet he continued to sit, unchallenging and calm. Disciplined, she thought. Or experienced. He was either very skilled or used to biding his time.

“Come, my dear,” her husband continued. “He is fresh from the auction block.”

“Disciplined, then,” she murmured, as her husband’s voice echoed, bluff, indulgent and utterly false. Still she did not move. Her husband’s face took on a look of gently wounded pride. He is losing patience, she thought.

“Well,” he said, as if he were coaxing a cat with cream, “I suppose if you don’t like it we’ll have to send it back.”

The handler stepped forward, unsheathing a knife.

“No,” Sabine said, surprising herself.

The guests went silent as they watched the awkward tableau. She could almost hear the slave’s pulse. It would be stressful. Very stressful. The knife was very near. One needn’t see to know. That, at least, she understood.

“I accept your gift,” she said, denying her husband the reaction he’d paid the flesh-price for.

His smile faltered but did not fail. Sabine approached the slave while the guests clapped politely, like the spectators they were. Sensing the change in the room, the slave’s fingers twitched though he did not challenge his bonds. The cilevore tightened regardless, rustling organically as Sabine came near. She ignored them. She wanted to see his face.

His white-gold hair curled softly, like feathers. Silky. Like her own. Suddenly, almost violently, she wanted the blindfold gone. Reaching out with a cool, steady hand, Sabine removed the mask, revealing an angular face with a scar along the jaw. Then the slave opened his eyes. No blinking. No panic. Just a pool of angry blue.

I am sorry, she wished to tell him. You were not meant for this.

The slave narrowed his eyes and nodded, as if he’d heard her thought. All the while, his cock rose thick above the leather thong.

To her shock, Sabine’s nipples peaked and she grew instantly wet. Without removing her gaze from his, Sabine acknowledged his nod. Then, lifting the heavy silk of her dress, she mounted him, gracefully, without revealing her arousal to anyone but the slave.

Sabine’s body flushed as she slid her swollen cunt along the length of his shaft. Her breath caught. His jaw tightened. She struggled for control as the scent of him went to her head. Then, thighs trembling, Sabine sank down, taking him into her body as her fingers knotted in his hair.

The slave’s body tensed and the cilevore shifted, sensing his impulse to touch her. She could feel his need to touch her vibrate through his skin.

“Release his arms,” she whispered.

She’d assumed the bonds would ignore her, but they dropped away, only to wrap around his waist. Wrists or no wrists, he would not be permitted to move.

Sabine grimaced. Even the manacles in her husband’s house were perfectly trained. But then slave’s hands gripped her through her dress and she fell into her body, light as snow. A sigh escaped her and gentle laughter filled the room—teasing laughter at her husband’s expense. Her thighs grew slicker at the sound.

Sabine began to move, slowly at first, then more quickly, working his shaft as she rose and fell, loosening her limbs and warming the body her marriage had turned cold.

Her focus narrowed. The room, the guests, the handler disappeared. Only her husband’s image remained sharp in her mind, and even that wavered when she looked at the slave. He was silent, watching her, hands just beneath her breasts as his thumbs rubbed her nipples through the bodice of her gown.

He is not a slave, she thought. That was not something that slaves did. Slaves followed instructions. They did what they were told. But this slave was watching—watching and responding. He did not need to be told.

Sabine rocked her hips, taking pleasure in her body as she took pleasure in him. And all the while he watched, muscles working in his jaw as his hands cupped her neck and steadied her waist. He was taking his pleasure in her. Her lips parted, lush and hungry, as her head tilted back. He was taking his pleasure in her.

Sabine moaned as he strained against his bonds, seeking her mouth with his. Had they left him his tongue, she wondered. Please, let him have his tongue. They muted slaves so often…she had not kissed him yet to know.

But she wanted his mouth. She wanted his kiss even though she feared the hollow she might find. It was defiance – of her husband and his culture and her own shameful fear – that drove her to his mouth. But all that fell away as he touched her tongue with his.

She lifted herself, rising up above his body until the tip of his cock rested at the opening of her sex. Her cunt clutched and ached, desperate for his girth, but she held herself suspended as the slave bared his teeth, squeezing her waist so hard she feared she would break.

He could crack her in two with those strong, scarred hands. He could snap her like a stick. Thoughts of her husband filled Sabine’s head. His cruel tastes. His lie of a smile. Her husband who trafficked in flesh. What might he do if confronted with such large, disciplined hands?

It was that thought, as much as the strength in his hands, that pushed her over the edge. Her legs buckled and Sabine sank back down. For the first time in her life, she gave her body free rein and she writhed like a whore, but Sabine was well beyond caring. She writhed and savored as the slave beneath her moaned. It was a sibilant sound, low and sweet—a sound for her alone. It shuddered over her skin.

Sabine arched her back and came, filling the room with a shriek so rich and obscene the slave’s handler flushed. It’s me, she thought. I am making that sound. Her cunt clutched harder and she came again, imagining herself soaked in his seed.

“Come,” she whispered into his ear. But the slave shook his head.

It was only then that she remembered he was not allowed release. She could fuck him all she liked, but he could never come. Slaves didn’t. Not male ones. It was taboo. She looked into his eyes, into his anger and need. Then she reached down between them and unknotted the thong that constricted the base of his cock.

“Come now,” she said. Her voice filled the room. “Come now for me.”

There were gasps of genuine shock. Ignoring the guests, Sabine began to move, splaying her body as he bucked and thrust against the cilevore at his waist.

Sabine’s husband said something. The handler shifted. They were running out of time.

Sensing the handler’s approach, the slave crushed Sabine to his chest, pressing her down and securing her with every single thrust. For a moment, all she heard the rush of her pulse. Then the slave’s breath hitched and he groaned as he soaked her with his cum.

Slowly, their breathing evened and their bodies calmed, and Sabine became aware of a buzzing, like wasps, in the room. No, not wasps. Nothing so dangerous. Just her husband’s guests.

Swallowing her apprehension, Sabine brought her mouth to the slave’s. She lingered a moment, drinking in the taste of ice and snow and home. Then she rose and straightened her skirts as the cilevore slivered back to his wrists.

“No,” she told the handler, who stood awkwardly near.

The handler looked to her husband, eyes weak and small as a pig’s. Her husband did not respond. Her husband, she thought with his grim, angry face, lined hard like the cracks in a bowl. Before either could respond, Sabine cut them both off.

“I will not have him bound.”

The cilevore receded, curling up on the floor as docilely as cats. The slave watched them settle and then looked at her. She nodded. He rose and crossed the room until he stood just behind Sabine.

Sabine thought of the slave’s deceptive calm and the crush of his hands on her waist. She’d have bruises the following day. A smile curved her lips. Gifts have power. By the rules of her husband’s culture, the giver cedes control of an object the moment it is given. The slave, one of her countrymen—was just such a gift, one that was part of a larger game. For the first time since marrying, Sabine felt that she might win.

“Thank you, dearest,” she said to her husband, who appeared to shrink and age. “Thank you for your generous gift.”

Guys & the Girls Who Want to Watch: On Homoeroticism

A black and white photograph of two men embracing for Two Guys and the Girl Who Wants to Watch: On Homoeroticism by Malin James

Erotic postcard by Jim French

Roughly two years ago, I wrote a post asking this question:

What is it about two men having sex that turns so many women on?

That post got a lot of generous responses from men and women all over the sexual spectrum, including Exhibit A (though I had no idea at the time it would begin much more than a correspondence). His response, in particular, stood out because it underscored something I’d been suspecting – that the appeal of homoeroticism is, perhaps, even more common (and complicated) than I’d originally assumed. So I set the question aside to think about it.

Two years later….

I’m finally writing the follow-up thanks, once again, to Exhibit A, who retweeted the original post last month. While I’m usually a bit sheepish about letting a topic drop, I’m glad of it in this case. After two years, my thoughts on this issue have matured in ways that I couldn’t have anticipated when I first posed the question.

The biggest adjustment in my thinking was my realization that, while m/m sex clearly appeals to a lot of women, it also appeals to a lot of men who identify as flexibly straight (as opposed to bi). This realization made me curious about how it appeals across gender divides and sexual identities. But first, I want to address the question I originally posted two years ago. Why do women think m/m sex is hot?

As with so many things, the appeal of homoeroticism is intensely subjective, so there is no one answer, but I was able to slot the responses I got into three general categories:

  • Homoeroticism appeals because I like good looking men, so the more the better. 
    • Pretty self-explanatory.
  • Homoeroticism appeals because it gives me access to something I otherwise don’t have access to.
    • Not surprising given our cultural attraction to voyeurism, taboo or potentially transgressive sex; and our obsession with the mutual incomprehensibility of the opposite sex.
  • Homoeroticism appeals because it subverts a dominant paradigm.
    • Also pretty self-explanatory, but worth breaking down a bit.

That third category refers to the fact that, in mainstream porn and media, the traditional understanding is that there’s a power imbalance between men and women when it comes to sex. While this paradigm is shifting thanks to shows like Jessica Jones, Masters if Sex and American Horror Story: Coven, it’s been a standard for so long that this power imbalance is a cultural assumption for a lot of people. This leads to the common perception that men are sexually dominant (ie: guarded or inaccessible) while women are open, emotional and vulnerable.

The m/m fantasy subverts this expectation thanks to a different cultural assumption—one that presumes that two guys will avoid this paradigm more naturally than a straight pairing. Of course, this is ridiculous because sexual dominance and submission are about interpersonal dynamics and not about gender, (which is why M/m pairings are so hot). Regardless, a lot of women admit to being turned on by m/m sex because they assume the men involved to be enjoying a level playing field – both actors are sexually assertive while remaining emotional vulnerability.

This idealization of male sexual agency tends to lead to romanticized readings of m/m dynamics. I’ve read more than one study in which women thought m/m sex was because the guys were “equal” “open” “real” and “vulnerable” in a way that they hadn’t witnessed before.

Of course, we’re talking about fiction in most of these cases—specifically porn. The popularity of m/m pairings in slash, porn and erotica reflects a certain kind of female fantasy—one that subverts dominant paradigms and gives the illusion of emotional access to men in sexual contexts. And it does all this by appropriating a somewhat romanticized version of what people imagine happening when two guys fuck.

Sidebar

This form of appropriation is important but it’s also complicated enough that it requires its own post, so I’m going to leave it there for now and come back to it later. (Hopefully in less than two years).

End Sidebar

While the fictional portrayal of m/m sexual dynamics appeals on one level, the reality of gay sex appeals on another. So, while some women (and men) fantasize about general aspects m/m sex, others engage it more specifically. In otherwords, some women want to watch their man fuck and / or get fucked by another guy; and some guys want the same thing.

I can only speak for myself when I say this, but my desire to watch my partner with another man has nothing to do with the romanticization of m/m sexual dynamics, and everything to do with our relationship and all of the complicated, nuanced reasons that make it something we both think is super hot.

Which brings me to the selective appeal of homoeroticism across genders.

Awhile ago, I wrote a story called “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen” about a woman who gives her boyfriend an m/m encounter for Christmas. It plays to a lot of my own kinks—voyeurism, dominance and, yes, homoeroticism—so I was really happy when women and men seemed to like it though they seemed to like it for different reasons.

Women liked it because the idea of watching their man with another guy is goddamn hot (because it is). Men seemed to like the wish-fulfillment aspect or it. The male protagonist wants to suck cock and get fucked, and his girlfriend makes it happen. It’s a portrait of the gray area between gay and straight, set against the backdrop of a loving, if unconventional, relationship.

That gray area is where homoeroticism appeals to me.

Don’t get me wrong – homoeroticism is hot for a lot of reasons, and it can subvert dominant paradigms. But that’s not why I love it. I love it because it breaks a barrier—one that often sits between a man and a woman, as well as between two men.

Unless you bury the needle at either 0 (exclusively straight) or 6 (exclusively gay) on the Kinsey scale, sexuality is more fluid than we tend to realize. The sexual behaviors sanctioned by mainstream society don’t always allow for safe experimentation within the gray areas. Homoeroticism, whether engaged as fantasy or more directly, is one way of experiencing a fuller range of sexual possibilities than might otherwise be available to strictly heterosexual pairings. What’s more, it makes those possibilities available in a relatively unthreatening way.

Homoeroticism is a way of romancing “the other”, whether “the other” is a partner of the same (or opposite) sex, or some unexplored facet of yourself. Ultimately, humans crave understanding and connection. We’re curious. We want to know and touch. A fascination with homoeroticism is one way we can taste things we don’t normally find on our plates.

Jade & Malin Talk 50 Shades

Jade & Malin, minutes from embarking on the FSoG experience.

Jade & Malin, minutes from embarking on the FSoG experience.

Hello everyone! I’ve got a bit of a departure for you today. Over the week-end my lovely partner in crime and platonic valentine, Jade A. Waters, and I saw The Movie. We got to talking about it over lunch, (of course), and decided that, in the face of so many proper reviews and opinions, we’d skip writing anything truly critical and record an off-the-cuff conversation instead. We meandered, we drifted, we laughed a lot, (we might have even snorted). Most of all, we had a lot of fun making this recording. A few notes before you press play:

1. We went into this with a particular context in mind – that FSoG is a formula romance, and the kink / BDSM elements were going to be geared for a primarily vanilla, mainstream audience. Also, R rating.

2. We tried to consider it through the lens of the audience it’s intended for, (rather than our own erotica writer / kinky person perspective)

3. The most pornographic moment in this film was the opening credits with Christian Grey’s wardrobe. See #1 on context and rating.

4. We get kind of loud at points so apologies if we laugh you out of your earbuds.

5. There are outtakes at the end! Listen on through if you can!

And now, without further ado, Jade and I talk 50 Shades. Thanks for joining us – we hope you enjoy the conversation at least half as much as we did.

xx.M

Pillow Talk Secrets: She’s a One Man Woman – But Does She Have to Be?

Hello everyone! It’s time another installment of Pillow Talk Secrets in which Jade A. Waters, Tamsin Flowers and I chat about erotica, writing and sex. This time around, Tamsin is our host for a discussion on why, in mainstream erotica, a heroine must often be justified in sleeping with multiple partners or risk be considered unsympathetic. It’s a knotty question, and it was a great deal of fun to tackle with these ladies. Here’s an excerpt of the conversation below. I hope you enjoy… xx.M

Pillow Talk Secrets

 

Tamsin: Hello, girls. Nice to see you!

Jade: You as well! How are you?

T: Great!

Malin: Hi ladies! I’m here!

T: Hello, gorgeous!

M: Ah, now this is how I want to start a day – chatting with the two of you. Nothing tops it.

J: So true! Now, who’s leading us today?

M: Our lovely, Tamsin, I believe! And I think she’s got something really interesting in mind.

J: Bring it, T!

T: Okay, I’m going to launch us straight in to today’s topic: Is it all right for the heroine of your book to sleep with more than one partner? This is a question that’s been batting around my brain for quite some time now. As you two know, I’ve just finished the first draft of my sexy spy thriller, Honeytrap, and my heroine certainly gets called upon to cosy up with the villains as well as the good guys. But I remembered reading somewhere that it’s a big no-no to readers if the heroine sleeps with multiple partners. How would you two handle this dilemma?

M: So, I have a couple of thoughts right off the top of my head. The first is that context is probably critical – how and why is she sleeping with multiple partners seems to make quite a difference in how readers respond… What do you think, Jade?

J: I agree. There are so many variations here – is she a free bird, is she cheating, is she in a negotiated polyamorous situation? Maybe we should focus on one at a time.

T: Ooh! Free bird is a new expression for me. I like that!

Why should she choose between them?

Why should she choose between them?

J: I just made that up. 🙂

M: I love it! Interestingly, I think the free bird scenario is the trickiest for writers. There’s still  surprising amount stigma attached to a female character who sleeps with multiple partners for no other reason than she wants to. Her own desire might be perfectly valid justification, but that doesn’t seem to settle well with readers in general. It’s a real shame, actually. There’s a lot in that restriction that doesn’t sit well with me.

J: I think that’s still, sadly, largely due to the real life cultural view on women having multiple partners – and it translates directly into people’s reading.

T: And this is where the question is interesting. Obviously, if someone buys a menage story, they’re expecting multiple partners. But there seems to be a real move in the market towards erotic romance rather than plain erotica at the moment – and with it comes a demand for the heroine to be, how shall I put it, better behaved or in lurve!

To read the rest, click here!

The KMQ: Bound / Unbound

KMQ Bound-Unbound I’ve been listening to The Kiss Me Quick’s erotica podcast for roughly five months, and in that time, I’ve heard Rose Caraway read everything from the dark and unsettling to the most joyfully pornographic smut you could ever hope to come across. It’s a wonderful podcast, both in content and execution, which is why I was honored when Ms. Caraway asked me if I wanted to write a piece for an episode. The answer was an immediate hell yes.

The piece I ended up writing, a dark bondage fantasy called Bound / Unbound surprised me. I’d been toying with the idea for about 9 years but it never went anywhere. I even had an extremely shitty, ancient first draft, but I gave it up shortly after writing it because I felt unequal to the task, (I was a newbie then and in desperate need of skill and confidence). Even as a concept, it was unruly and stubborn, but when the KMQ came up, something made me dig it out.

Writing a piece to be read is different than writing a piece to be performed – it has to be a little tighter, a little leaner. It has to have a certain efficiency and punch because the ear can only process so much at one time. These limitations ended up imposing an additional structure on the work – one based on practical concerns like pacing, (there’s kick-ass interstitial music), and tension. Those limitations, plus having a specific audience, (KMQ’s Lurid Listeners), were the key.

You can listen to Rose Caraway’s reading of Bound / Unbound here. There’s even a fabulous short, “The Massage” by Lady Cheeky” from The Big Book of Orgasms to sweeten the deal, so check it out.

And finally, on a personal note, I just want to say thank you to Rose Caraway and the KMQ. I would never have guessed that 9 years later, my first rough, unformed little bit of erotica would be performed as an episode of one of the classiest productions there is. And if you aren’t already heard the KMQ, get on over there and have a listen. You’ll be happy you did.

© 2017 Malin James

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