He spoke again, without stopping his leather caresses. “Have you ever been beaten by a lover?”
She shook her head, and felt herself blush, though she didn’t understand why.
“Have you ever dreamed or fantasized about such a thing?”
“No,” she said, indignant. “Of course not.”
Gregory laughed. “Of course not? Indeed! Perhaps you don’t remember your dreams, Kate.”
He leaned close to her ear, whispering, “The first time I laid eyes on you, I sensed that you craved the whip. I saw it in your eyes, in the way you moved, in your fierce, almost defiant independence. I felt your yearning to be mastered, to be set free.”
She hung her head, silent. Was what he said true? Did she really know so little of herself?
“I want to whip you, Kate, whip you well, to open your mind and your senses to the possibilities within you.”
He lifted her chin with the end of the whip, so that her eyes met his.
“Will you do this for me? Do you dare to take this next step?”
His gaze was a spotlight, searching to the depths of her soul. Kate felt fear and desire, rebellion—I’ll show him what I dare!—and devotion—How could I not do whatever pleases him? She found herself fascinated by the leather implement of punishment that he wielded with such familiarity. She was curious, disgusted, and, as usual in Marshall’s presence, unbelievably aroused.
Finally she answered. “Yes,” she said softly. “I dare. For you.” Her cheeks burned at admitting her weakness.
“Good,” he said. “Once again, you do not disappoint me.” He circled around behind her. “Now, relax. And breathe.”
The first stroke caught her by surprise. Confused by her mixed emotions and muddled by her lust, she had not been thinking about the pain. Each leather strand was a red-hot wire, searing the flesh of her buttocks. She bit her lip, trying not to cry out.
A precise snap and a second stroke landed, a little lower, on the fullest part of her rump. “Ouch!” She could feel the individual traces left by the knots, a dozen separate bites all over those swelling cheeks.
“Does that hurt?” asked Gregory, with a little laugh. “But I have just begun.” He swung the whip three times in rapid succession, crisscrossing her behind with sharp leather kisses. Then there was another snapping sound, and the thongs raked across the sensitive skin on the backs of her thighs.
Kate whimpered. Each stroke built on the pain of the previous one. Her whole rear burned and stung, as the man behind her methodically applied the whip to her ass, her thighs, and her shoulders. She twisted and writhed, trying in vain to avoid the lashes. The bonds held her taut.
Gregory used an uneven rhythm, so that she could not anticipate the blows. There would be a pause of several breaths, then he would rain four or five quick strokes on her quivering flesh.
She could no longer feel the individual strands of the whip. All had blended into a hot haze of pain, streaking up and down her body. Tears pricked her eyes. She wished that she could see her tormentor. Perhaps that would give her courage.
Even as this thought came to her, he stopped. She felt his palms cupping her buttocks. Even against her inflamed skin, his touch was hot. Now she felt him sliding his fingers into her cunt, probing and massaging.
She knew that she was drenched with arousal, that the beating had left her sex more swollen and hungry than before. “Just testing,” said Gregory with his characteristic mocking tone. “I want to make sure that you are enjoying yourself.”
Kate was mortified. It was hard enough to admit to herself that the whipping had excited her—for him to know this was too much to bear.
“I am not finished yet, my little slave.” He came around to face her. He was flushed and breathing deeply, yet his voice was totally controlled. “I’m just getting a bit warm.” He stripped off the vest and shirt, as she watched in fascination. The sight of his lean, hard body made her weak with lust. She was glad for the ropes that held her upright.