A Sizzling Summer by The Bay - Part Eight
Need To Catch Up...
A Sizzling Summer by The Bay - Part Eight
June 2016 – San Francisco, California
Just as the sun was peeking through the cracks in Iona’s apartment windows, Estelle slipped quietly from the bed, careful not to wake Iona.
They’d been up late, but her internal clock would not let her sleep longer than five o’clock in the morning. She padded quietly to the kitchenette area to make coffee and a slice of toast for herself.
She’d sit on the couch and read until Iona woke. She always carried an eReader with her in her purse. You never knew when you might have an opportunity to catch a few chapters of a good book!
They’d had a whirlwind Saturday that rushed by in alternating sessions of sex and binging on old movies. They’d stayed up late into the night pleasuring each other, drifting off to sleep, then waking again to an insatiable hunger for sex, that neither could seem to fulfill.
Estelle realized in those quiet moments in between, when she was relaxing into the warm afterglow of her release, that she’d never known uninhibited sexual indulgence like this. Her emotions flitted with tiny thoughts of worry that her and Iona might develop feelings for each other. She didn’t want that, and yet – did she want to overthink this? She’d had two serious relationships that were so clogged with the propriety of constructs, she now felt she could stretch those dormant wings she hadn’t even known existed.
Would it be so terrible if her and Iona did get into a relationship? She didn’t think it wise. However, she had to question the rationale. Was it because the general consensus of society mandated that jumping into a serious relationship, after just getting out of one, was foolish?
She was so tired. Tired of letting her life be dictated by constructs! So what! If her and Iona did develop feelings, she’d cross that bridge when she came to it.
These thoughts meandered around her mind, in between the paragraphs of the book she was attempting to read. After two hours, she could hear Iona stirring behind the rice-paper screen. She joined Estelle in the common area. Iona was wearing a beautiful sapphire-blue, silk robe.
“I love that! It’s gorgeous! Where did you get it?”
“Chinatown. Have you not been yet?”
Estelle shook her head as she sipped the last of her cold coffee. She set the empty cup down. “I’ve been meaning to go.”
“I love shopping and dining down there. It’s so fun,” Iona said as she pulled the pot off the coffee burner and poured herself a cup. “You want a refill?”
Estelle lifted her empty cup and stood up from the couch to join Iona in her kitchen. She let Iona refill her coffee then sat down at the dinette table.
“Thanks.” Estelle sipped the coffee. “So, what shall we do today? Maybe we should go shopping downtown.”
Iona smiled ruefully. “I still have to make sure I have my ducks in a row with the accounts. I was thinking I’d get it done this morning. I don’t know if you want to go home and shower and change, or you’re welcome to shower here, and I can loan you some jeans and a blouse. I think you’re the same size.”
“Thanks. I don’t mind staying and helping you finish up the account work. Then we can continue to enjoy the weekend.”
Iona joined Estelle at the table with her coffee and a banana. “You want to have breakfast here? Or we could go out and catch a bite at this little café a few blocks away.”
Estelle cracked a smile. “Like I said. I hate cooking, but if you’re cooking, I’m game to stay. Otherwise we can go out – my treat. Honestly, I’m surprised you’re up. I thought you sleep until noon.”
“I said I wasn’t a morning person. I never said I slept until noon. I don’t mind cooking. I think I can rustle up something edible.”
“I can’t lie, I’d like that. I have some things I wanted to talk about. Not sure it would be easy to discuss in public,” Estelle said.
“Oh?” Iona’s eyes rose in surprise. “Sounds serious. Are you breaking up with me already?”
Estelle cracked a wry smile. “Kinda hard to break up if we aren’t actually together.”
“Touché.” Iona grinned.
“Well, I’m curious. We were kinda just rolling with it yesterday, and it was amazing – don’t get me wrong. But, we didn’t really talk any further about the BDSM stuff. Are you still interested?”
“I am indeed,” Iona said. “I didn’t want to attempt anything with you until we talked about it first.”
“Ahh, I see.”
“We can talk now if you like? Do you have an idea where you’d like to start? What you’re interested in learning? Do you want to be a submissive, a Domme, a top or bottom?”
“Oh, um, I have to admit I don’t really know where to start at all. I shelfed the interest completely when Dayton shut down on it. Like I said, I didn’t want to torture myself if I didn’t have a partner to be involved with me.”
Iona grimaced and opened her mouth then closed it quickly. She seemed as though she were going to say something then thought better of it.
“What?” Estelle prodded.
“Well… I hate to tell you this.” Iona bit her lip.
“I don’t want to make you feel bad. Lesson number one. BDSM doesn’t have to be about sex. In fact, quite often it isn’t. There are many in The Lifestyle that have power exchange agreements, that don’t involve any sex whatsoever.”
Estelle’s brow furrowed as she processed this. “So, you’re saying I could have been involved in BDSM with other people outside of Dayton?”
“If you wanted to and Dayton had been okay with it. It really depends on what you are hoping to get out of it. It’s a huge misconception that The Lifestyle, equals kink, equals sex, but that isn’t true.”
“I know I got ragingly turned on when he spanked me though. A lot. More than I cared to admit to him because I was terribly embarrassed.”
“Then maybe you’re a person who does need the sexual involvement in your BDSM Lifestyle. There’s nothing wrong with that. You could also engage in Scene, get really turned on, and not engage in sex with those participating in the Scene.
Estelle nodded, listening quietly, sipping her coffee.
Iona continued. “So, when a Scene is conducted – or basically when two or more people engage in ‘BDSM playtime’ those individuals can negotiate what is going to occur, soft limits, hard limits, etcetera. Relationships might be exclusive, or open. Polyamory is pretty big in the community.”
“If Dayton had been open to it, I could have had an open relationship. That’s what you’re saying. And it could have been an outside relationship that may or may not have included sex?”
Estelle blew out a long breath. “Honestly, I just don’t know what he would have been okay with. His reaction caused me to just,” she sighed, “shutdown I guess you could say.” She paused thinking, then shook her head. “Is that why you’re okay with this ‘friends-with-benefits’ arrangement?”
“Pretty much. I’ve been in The Lifestyle since college, so the way of it, is very much ingrained into who I am now. The culture inside the BDSM community is very liberal. But don’t mistake liberal for loose. There are protocols, rules, boundaries. Everything, and I mean everything gets communicated because of those liberties. At least it should. In theory anyway.”
Estelle was quiet for a moment.
“Are you okay?” Iona asked. “Did I say something?”
“I’m okay,” Estelle said. She couldn’t hide the edge of sadness in her tone. “I’m not sure why I feel a little dejected hearing you explain this. I’m just going through a lot right now.” She blew out another breath and ran her fingers through her scalp.
Iona stood up, placed a comforting hand on Estelle’s shoulder and gave it an sympathetic squeeze. She then went to her kitchenette. “We can go at your pace, or not at all. The one thing about The Lifestyle – it should be consensual and on mutual terms. I know most of my limits and such, so this is about you taking your time. Whatever you need.”
“Thanks, I appreciate that. I do have an interest, but I have no idea where to start. I’m not even sure why I feel upset right now. I feel a bit like I’m wandering around in the dark with no direction, and I don’t dare ask you to help me figure out where the end of the tunnel is. We’ve just met, and I don’t want to dump that on you. Especially since I know you’re going through things right now too.”
“Well first of all, I don’t feel like you’ve dumped anything on me. I don’t believe you will, or I wouldn’t have gone this far. Secondly, I get it. I’m in that same boat. Again, the Universe saw fit to hook us up, girl, so roll with it.”
Iona smiled and Estelle had to match her.
“Thirdly have you ever read Girl on A Train?”
Estelle jerked her head back, slightly surprised by this. “Uh, no, I actually missed that one. It’s on my TBR list though.”
“Well, I thought it was an amazing read, but there’s this line in that book. Goes something like, ‘sometimes you grieve the loss of something you never had.’ Maybe that’s what’s going on with you right now. Just a thought.”
Iona cracked eggs into a bowl, and silence stretched between them. The only sound was the metal whisk scraping against the stainless steel bowl as Iona continued making breakfast.
Estelle chewed on these suggestions and tears glistened in her eyes. She wiped quickly at the creases when Iona turned her back to pour the eggs into a hot frying pan.
Yes, Iona was right. She felt she’d missed out on so much. Why had she let herself miss so much? Did it matter? Somehow it did. She needed to know why she’d allowed herself to fall into such… such… She couldn’t even place what it was. All she knew was that she was tired of the old her. The new her wanted to find herself and feel good about life.
“You okay?” Iona broke the silence of Estelle’s reverie.
“Yeah, I think you’re right. It just hit me kind of hard. I feel sad I’ve missed out on so much.”
“I know that I’m going through a mourning for lost time too. I figured you might be as well.”
Iona placed two plates of eggs and toast with orange slices on the table. She seemed to sense that Estelle needed to think so they ate in companionable silence.
“That was perfect. Thank you so much,” Estelle said as she was finishing the last bite of toast.
“You’re welcome. I don’t claim to be a gourmet chef, but I can get the job done.”
“Sometimes simple is better.”
Iona lifted her coffee in a gesture of salute then brought it to her lips.
“So, I want to get involved. Where do I start,” Estelle asserted.
“I’m going to assume you mean The Lifestyle?”
“Well I have some books I’d like you to read. They’re old school – regular old hard and paperback books. Is that okay?
“Of course.” Estelle laughed as if the suggestions were absurd.
“Well I saw you reading on the Kindle when I came out. Some people prefer exclusively digital books now.”
“Either is fine.”
“When you’re done reading them, let’s sit down and talk about where you think your interests are.”
Iona stood to clear the plates, and Estelle stood up and stretched her arms above her head. She helped Iona clean up the breakfast dishes.
“So, work then shopping trip to Chinatown?” Iona suggested.
“I think that sounds fun.”
They finished up the dishes. Had a quickie after their shower. Ended up taking another shower. They were surprised that the work on the two accounts had very little to tie up. They were out the door just after noon.
Estelle had a wonderful day exploring the shops with her colleague and new friend. Yet she found her mind continually drifting to the stack of books that Iona had handed her.
They’d stopped by her place to drop off the books and her other items before heading downtown. She placed the stack on her coffee table. She was surprised at how her mind kept coming back to those pages as they shopped. She was torn between wanting to spend time with Iona and also to get back home, crack them open, and start reading.
In the past few months since she’d moved up from LA, she’d felt this ever-nagging void expand within her. It had long been there, yet moving only made it worse, not better, and she had no idea how to fill it. She wasn’t even sure what it was.
She’d thumbed through them briefly as they were driving to her place, remarkably, she felt a surge of excitement. She was still unsure what her void was, but she hoped that this would help her get closer to discovering it, and dare she hope, even fill it?
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