I awoke to the sound of a loud knock at the door. Room service. He had ordered enough food for five people and for a moment, I wondered if he planned to return. But I knew he wouldn’t. He was giving me space to process.
After what I’d experienced the night before, I should have been starving, almost ravenous. But I wasn’t that hungry. I felt sated…in a strange sort of way. I noshed for a bit on the plates before me and then I ventured into the bathroom for a shower.
I stood there and looked in the mirror and outwardly, I didn’t really look any different. I felt different. I felt more aware. I was beginning to notice an outline of a small bruise on my neck when I noticed something on the counter by the sink. He had left me a note: “You will need to use ointment where you were punctured. After you shower, wipe down the areas with alcohol and use this Neosporin. Do it for today and all will be well by tomorrow.”
He’d left me some alcohol wipes and packets of Neosporin. I’d not even looked at my feet. I sat on the side of the tub and examined them closely. There were tiny scabs where the needles had been, but didn’t hurt when I touched them. I got into the shower and began reflecting on the evening. As I washed my body I was reminded of all that we did. We were together for 8 hours.
Looking back, I reflected on some of the other things we did that I didn’t share in the other post. He seemed to understand my need for fear, my need to feel vulnerable. Prior to moving to the bedroom, he’d outlined my form with a large hunting knife. He never broke the skin, but I could feel the point of the knife moving across my body…the cold steel again my warm flesh. I know this sounds strange to many people, but I loved the feel. It is not that I wanted to be cut, or hurt. I liked the sensation of being that vulnerable. I liked that we were doing something taboo and dangerous. I felt a level of arousal I’d never felt before.
I was lost in thought as shampoo began running in my eyes, snapping me back to reality. I finished up my shower and got dressed. Putting on my clothes, I remembered how his hands felt, how his body felt, how his breath felt in my ear, coaxing me, taunting me, reassuring me. I put my hand on my neck and I was reminded of the moments he held me by the throat and how I loved that feeling. Had I always been this way? Had this need for darkness been lying dormant in the recesses of my obsidian soul?
On the drive home I received a text from him, “Don’t forget. Text me when you get home. Be safe.” I didn’t know what to respond, or how to respond, or if I wanted to respond. I drove in silence. No radio. No distraction other than the flood of thoughts vying for attention in my head. When I pulled in to the garage, I instinctively texted him. “I am home.”
His reply, “Good. I want you to send me an email of your thoughts about what we experienced. You have until midnight to get it to me. Be transparent. ”
I was a bit put off by this request, but I decided to do it. Maybe writing it out will give me more perspective. So I wrote him a missive from my vantage point and sent it to him. He responded with his thoughts and a question, “when can I see you again?”
I didn’t answer. I went to bed that night, sore and pensive. I liked how I felt, but I was conflicted…it’s not “normal” to like pain. It’s not “normal” to play with knives and needles. It’s not “normal” to feel this way. So I got up and emailed him.
“I don’t know when. I don’t even know if. I am trying to figure out who I am in all of this.”
And I went to sleep. Early in the morning I heard my phone ding. I’d received an email…from him.
“You now know exactly who you are. For once in your life, you know yourself.” Initially I didn’t see it, but it was a new email, not a response.
The subject line consisted of one word, “Masochist”
I’d been revealed. He saw beneath the mask. He knew who I was.
And so did I.