As I was saying, I thought the man who was talking to me was one of the soft ones. I felt brave with him; like I had nothing to fear from him because although in theory he could say or do what he wants while at the Retreat I thought I knew he wouldn’t do anything much. There was something about the way he talked, his voice and his accent that made me think he wouldn’t be tough.
I got it very wrong.
I even asked him directly if he was nice or horrible! He started to explain to me about being both and I barely listened; I was more interested in the feel of the rug on my skin as I sat there and played with it with my fingers. I wasn’t interested in hearing anything he had to say about being fair when he punished girls and only punishing them when they really needed it etc. etc.
I had just started to get a little annoyed and began to explain to this man that women didn’t necessarily need punishing and in any case why was it his right to do so, when Mr. Negulesco arrived with his sweetheart, Spirit. I remember freezing and lowering my voice, hoping they wouldn’t see me there but unfortunately they came over and sat on the other sofa, right opposite the man I was talking to (or rather who was talking to me). They greeted each other by name so I guess they had all met before and I learned that the man’s name was Hugo. Not that I cared. I still thought he was just an annoying conversation I was being forced to have and I was more concerned with avoiding Mr. Negulesco because it was the first time I’d seen him since the time I made a mistake and disobeyed him and I didn’t know if he was still angry with me or not. I was really glad Spirit was with him because I figured she’d keep him occupied and happy.
I’d just like to add a little something about Spirit before I go on with the events of last night. I have only seen her a couple of times before and I really don’t know her but she is stunning! Her skin is perfection and the clothes she wears must be tailor made to fit her incredible body. She’s so serene and beautiful and feminine. There’s always a sort of quiet aura around her and I don’t know how she manages to be so calm and contented and in control when she is just as enslaved here as I am. If it were possible to breed a swan with a lion, you would get a magnificent creature very like Spirit.
Hugo kept talking to me and then Mr. Negulesco said something about me – getting my name wrong again, of course – and Hugo replied as though I weren’t even there. The men then started to laugh at me and call me names and I tried to ask them politely to stop but that only seemed to make it worse. Then of course Hugo wanted me to take my top off and Mr. Negulesco got even more insulting and I was trying so very hard to keep calm and not get angry. It was as if they were doing it on purpose, saying things just to wind me up and get me more and more annoyed. They kept insulting me and saying that I liked being naked in front of them. Hugo doesn’t know me but Mr. Negulesco certainly does and he knows very well that I hate men looking at my breasts and I couldn’t believe he was telling this other man such horrible lies about me and laughing when he saw how hurt I was by them.
I can’t remember how it happened, but the anger and indignation just boiled up in me and I couldn’t control it despite trying my hardest. Then Hugo got my name wrong too! Suddenly I was standing up screaming at the men to stop it and I was shouting and yelling at the top of my lungs! I remember hearing my words and then it was as if I could see them looming in the air, thick and dangerous, right in front of me. I knew I should run but I also knew there was no where to run to. My muscles wouldn’t work and I just stood there staring at my words as they incriminated me.
I think Hugo said something like, “Wow, does she often do that?” Then Mr. Negulesco did something strange and, I don’t know if he was being kind or whether he just didn’t want to punish me then or whether he truly couldn’t believe my outburst but he asked me if I was repeating something I had read in a book or seen in a movie or suggested I was perhaps rehearsing for a play. I felt numb and weak and remember leaning on his words for support as I nodded and agreed that I had been doing just that.
All the strength I had felt had drained out of me and I stood in front of Hugo now and obediently unlaced my corset so it could slip off me and fall to the floor. Tears also fell. Why did they have to do this? Why couldn’t they get what they want by being nice? Wonderful men like Sir Jeff treat me kindly and I don’t even want to try and stop them when they try to touch me. But these beasts seem to want more than just my body; they seem to enjoy ripping out everything I am and all that I feel and then playing with it until they completely destroy it.
It wasn’t enough for Hugo that I would parade my half-naked body in front of him, of course. He had to touch too. But even that he did differently than other men. Some men here touch me gently and make my body warm and it feels good and I hate that I like it. Some men touch me so that it hurts and I am scared and I hate that fear they put into me. But Hugo did both. How? How did he do that? He reached out and touched my breast, he had his hands and fingers on my nipple and he spoke again about being fair but I couldn’t concentrate on what he was saying. This time it wasn’t that I didn’t care; it wasn’t that I wasn’t paying attention. It felt as though he had my mind between his finger and thumb and each time he squeezed or pinched it was my brain that felt the electric jolt as well as my body. And my body did feel it. Oh, I am horrified to admit that, despite hating how this man had spoken to me, had treated me and had touched me, my body was beginning to react to him. He hurt me but then he touched me softly and I suddenly realized I was feeling his hand between my legs even though he wasn’t touching me there …
I don’t know what else to say now, my poor diary. You have heard my story and you must think I’m crazy. I feel exhausted and broken again, just telling you all this. I don’t know what he did to me last night and even writing it down now I’m sure I’m not doing it justice because it affected me so deeply. I’m sure I’ll bounce back eventually. I hope. I have to. I will get the fire to burn again and I’ll be brave and…
I asked him what I should call him, in case he didn’t want me to refer to him as Hugo and he said I should call him Sir. I think I’ll have to refer to him as Sir Hugo to you my diary friend, because if I just call him Sir you may not know who I’m talking about.
He said he had to leave and that I could put the corset back on. I remember picking it up and holding it to my chest but I wasn’t able to lace it up properly. I watched him leave. I had been really, really wrong about him. That’s the first time that I had misjudged a man so badly. I’m usually pretty accurate with that.
Mr. Negulesco called me to him after Sir Hugo left and told me to clean him up. Yup. He had been playing with Spirit and now he wanted me to lick him clean. I couldn’t feel anything anywhere so I just did it and it was as if it wasn’t even really me. I was shocked to see images float through my mind as I worked of Sir Hugo and Mr. Negulesco and Sir Jeff. Remembering Sir Jeff made me start to cry again and my tears must have mingled with the other liquids I was lapping up but I didn’t taste a thing. All my senses had fused out.