I wonder … how many people put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard to record for … prosperity, their coming out? I would imagine that the number is quite high, even if they do not make this writing public.
I cannot remember, in all honesty whether or not I have composed a piece of this nature or not and … if I haven’t, if I ever will. However, when faced with the prospect of making public the “other” side of myself, the side that I had to hide for years from a partner who could not understand, who would not try to comprehend, who saw it as perversion, I chance facing more ridicule.
Ridicule may not be the appropriate choice of words to use here. Feigned shock from those who never gave it a thought, hidden satisfaction from those who may have assumed but never knew for certain, nervous teasing from those who may also be hiding a “side” or “facet” of themselves, even arrogant taunting from those who now see themselves as “better than”.
Am I ready to put myself out there? To be seen by everyone as a complete person who is comfortable with who hy is? Am I nervous, anxious, afraid? Only time will tell if I am ready, however if one is observant they may have already picked up subtle hints. I am not however nervous or afraid, a little anxious though, maybe. Will I be raked over coals, lose face among my friends and equals? Perhaps, but then again, the path less traveled is not paved for comfort, it is one enveloped in darkness with ominous thorns that pierce the flesh with each small, measured step taken.
I remember when Angelika and I first met … my profile stating for “personality identification”, my gender (female), my sexuality (lesbian butch), my position in the alternative lifestyle (Top) but no mention of the boi side of me. Hindsight being 20-20, Angelika’s “I know nothinkkkk” meant she knew a lot more than she was admitting to and as days melted into weeks, that became all too apparent.
One day, whilst I was “doing the DJ thing”, my lack of sleep caught up with me and SAM the broadcasting program which was set to “auto-pilot” began to play Christmas carols. Realizing that something was out of sorts … Christmas carols in March … Angelika phoned. I must have sounded terrible when I picked up the tiny mobile and hoarsely uttered a hello which was greeted with “You have GOT to be kidding me”. In one fell swoop I was slammed into boi space. Not an intentional move on Angelika’s part, I might add.
We were spending the better part of our day/night talking on voice with each other. Angelika knew I was Old Guard and also that I considered myself, quite rightly, a novice. Never had I met anyone who could mentally “put me on my knees”. I didn’t enter the virtual world of SecondLife to explore D/s or BDSM. I entered the massive “community” to heal and to face through my chosen avatar, how I look in real life due to breast cancer. But here I was wanting, no, needing to do just that. Not through menus and clicks but with someone who had such a vast amount of knowledge.
It isn’t really out of the norm for an Old Guard Top to wish to serve hys partner if she is part of the same “lifestyle”. In fact, tradition dictates that once a year, a Syr/Master/Ma’am return to their roots to remember where they came from. To me, the need to return to my roots was strong. Learning more about myself and the alternative lifestyle through Angelika, I believe, is a very good thing. You see, Angelika is a Victorian Femdom. This style complements Old Guard nicely and Angelika has Old Guard friends.
I had a second avatar within SL that I had created for the charity work that I do. This avatar created a profile denoting the “boi side” and under the guiding hand of Madam A, Angelika’s Femdom avatar, I began to discover the freedom of total completeness. I petitioned her for the privilege of wearing her collar and on April 1st 2008 was granted this honour. This collar is both a SecondLife and a “real life” one.
I have always kept the “boi side” secreted away from my workmates and vanilla (non-alternative lifestyle) friends and acquaintances. That is until after lengthy discussions and many loggings in and out of SL done in order to swap avatars, it was decided to do away with the “others” and “combine alts”. I spoke to Angelika about convening a “circle of close friends” and letting them know that Heart, my other avatar, and Aryon were the same person. It was like a weight was hoisted off my shoulders.
Then, a few weeks ago, a mutual friend and owner of a highly successful Femdom sim asked if I would write an article for FEMDOM Magazine about the two facets of me. I spoke to my cherished partner, my precious and gentle lover, meine Herrin and my muse. With her blessings, I wrote. To educate, to inspire and to free myself. Now I soar higher, if that is possible, for I am completely free.
I am devoted on all levels to her. I love as I have never loved before. I serve and seek to honour her and I write, inspired by her entirety. I owe her everything. I give her my total existence.
There are many I need to thank who have played a part in my growing. Brook “Zillba” Bennett, who showed me honour and introduced me to the two words that changed my life …. Old Guard. Mickey, my first Syr who guided me further along the path and with whom I earned my leathers. Angelika, who showed me that I could love again. Evangeline Eames, for being a dear friend, a Lady and for giving me the opportunity to write the article. I thank you all.
The following is the article I wrote. It can be found here on page 46. The title I chose to give it was, “A Lesbian Old Guard Butch Talks About D/s”. FEMDOM Magazine usually runs two articles, ‘A View from the Top’ and ‘subtext’. In issue 5, the two were combined.
A View from the Top & subtext
I was a late bloomer compared to many. My delving into the styles of life known as D/s and BDSM, came at a time when a desire was slowly germinating into a need.
I met a person who built dungeon furniture and because of long discussions that kindled the fire, I began my search for the fuel to keep it burning. I found an online community that fed me with knowledge. I gleaned what I deigned useful from the husks of nonsense and began a journey that continues to this day.
After spending many weeks conversing with both dominants and submissives, not knowing where within their “rankings” I belonged, I was introduced to a Ma’am and her boy, who was also a Top in his own right and tasted what was to become my chosen life style for the first time. I was curious as to how one could dominate one person and be submissive to another, but then, I knew nothing of Old Guard yet. I was soon to learn and the thirst for knowledge, the uncontrollable hunger, still exists.
I was taught basics, encouraged to talk to others and discuss these conversations openly with my mentors and to write about my thoughts and feelings. It was during one such conversation that I met an Old Guard Syr, the spelling denoting that “she” was a masculine female, a lesbian butch like myself.
Old Guard, founded by veterans of World War II, is a hierarchical style of life based heavily on rituals, protocols and discipline. Originally followed by some of the gay males, it also, in more recent times, began to attract the interest of some of the lesbian community as well.
Through this Syr, I met others and after much thought, long questioning discussions and more than a few confessions on my part, I was given the “ranking” of boi, which does not denote submissive or slave, but more so defines one’s standing in the community and/or subsequent Household within Old Guard.
Eventually I was gifted the opportunity to earn my leathers. A ritualistic trial held by superiors that tests one’s mental, physical and emotional stamina … one’s true grit. If one withstands the combined “ordeals”, the leathers, traditionally chaps and a vest/waistcoat, are given. The option to “Top out” accompanies this, a graduation of sorts, and I elected to do so. This however comes with the vow that one will “return to their roots”, in my case, a boi, once a year to remember where one came from, to remind us, as Tops that we worked our way up from the lower ranks.
Many consider me a switch, a term used for one who tops and bottoms, or in a more definitive statement, is both a Domme/Dom and a submissive. This could not be further from the truth. I am a Top, 24/7. Living by the creed of Old Guard, my Knight’s Code. Honesty, responsibility, integrity, common sense, humour, good manners, personal grooming, generosity and a willingness to share in the work of keeping the lore, the rituals, protocols and all that is Old Guard in existence. I do this, I hope, through leading by example, by educating, step by small step, those who, whether they participate in D/s or BDSM or not, do not or cannot understand why I am who I am.
I, like many others, am involved in a relationship and while that relationship is not based on D/s, it does embrace it. My partner, both in SecondLife and real life, Angelika Courtois (MadamA), is a Victorian style Femdom. With over 20 years experience, who better to learn from. When we first met, I did not even know she was involved in D/s, but with every day that passed, I felt more at ease, more comfortable. Not only with her, but within myself. I was growing and loving every minute of it. I still am and do.
Over a period of a few months, I realized, as many Tops in Old Guard do, that she complemented the boi within me. That through her very nature she compelled me to want to better myself. I petitioned for her collar and she graciously accepted. But contrary to popular D/s belief, that does not classify me as a switch. I am her’s, I serve only her, though at her request, I serve others in a way that I hope shows honour and respect, not only for my Ma’am, but for those who watch and wittingly or not, learn by my words and actions.
By my own definition: if one is “in service” they may or may not be collared, since a collar is not necessary to be “owned”. To me, it is a visual indication, but “a collared heart is the most precious gift that can be given. Its measure and value is visible only to the giver and the receiver”. However, one can be delegated by their top to serve for a period of time “in service” to another top, for whatever the reason, training, organizational skills, or some other purpose. Service on the other hand is the act of serving, whether one is owned, collared or not.
I mentioned earlier that I have written about my thoughts and feelings and I felt compelled to include some excerpts for you, in hopes that you will not only learn about me, but perhaps about yourself as you read:
“A dominant cannot take on the responsibility of a submissive if they do not know and understand themselves. This cannot and does not happen overnight. We do not suddenly decide that we want to be a dominant. A lot of what makes us this way is innate. Even more HAS to be learned. A person with a dominant personality in everyday life … work, family, etc. may very well be submissive in a D/s BDSM environment and vice versa.
The question remains unanswered … where is the true dominance? Is it physically evident? To that I say no … not in the way muscles are seen rippling or the shine of one’s hair or the colour of one’s skin is evident. A person need not be dressed in red, white and blue and wear a huge “D” on their chest proclaiming themselves to be Superdomme.
Is true dominance something that can be felt? Most certainly yes, it is, but not as a flogger or a singletail is felt. I believe it is felt through the bearing, the demeanor of a person. The way they walk into a room and without saying a word capture the eye.
Well, can true dominance be heard? Definitely … in the softest compelling whisper. The tonal inflections of a voice and in the very words that voice utters. Knowing what to say and when is an ability we all hope we have. Anyone can tell someone to do something but to do so in a way that instills confidence or even with the softest voice lets someone know they have done something wrong, I believe this is something to strive for.
Just over two years ago I wrote these words … “It has always been my belief, that it does not take an “iron fist” or a “cold heart” to control someone. The same outcome can be reached through the use of a “kid glove” and a “warm heart” if used correctly. Merely the correct tone of voice can reduce a submissive who is feeling particularly bold to a quivering, whimpering, bowl of jello.” Do I still feel that way? Without a shadow of a doubt.
A dominant is entrusted with one of the most precious gifts ever. That gift is the mind, body and soul of a submissive. A submissive who sees something in this dominant that screams out to them. That says without words … I am here, you are safe. In that way a dominant is very much like a parent of a small child.
As much as submission is a mindset, a feeling within one’s heart that makes them feel comfortable and warm, so it is that dominance can also be seen to be a mindset. Not only that but it is also the will, the inner love and compassion that a person feels towards another. The ability to earn respect, trust and the love of another person can sometimes be a difficult thing. Through open (and to this point I add) even to the point of being painfully so, honest communication this is achieved … we hope.
True dominance is an innate mindset, it is the desire to teach, the desire to give physical and mental safety and security. It is the thing that enables us to take hold of someone’s mind and heart and compel them to do better, to strive to do things that perhaps in their past they have been afraid to do and still allow them to be themselves.
Can true dominance be learned? I think not … one can improve ones “skills” but the basic entity of dominance is something we are either born with or not and then throughout our lives we hone and glean knowledge that makes us better. Much like a General studies the battle strategies of his predecessors in order to win his own battles, a dominant learns from their more experienced peers. Generals like dominants are born not made but through the trials and errors of those before them, those around them, and those they make themselves, for inevitably they will … they become better.
So where, you ask me is true dominance? I think it has its home in the heart but shows itself through the words, the actions, the unspoken yet somehow felt thoughts of a person. It can be seen in the softest of smiles or in the twinkle of an eye. It can be felt in the sting of a disciplinary slap or the softest caress. It is shown in every day existence by doing the same as any great leader would do and that is by leading from the front, by setting a good enough example that others will not only want to follow but WILL follow. It is the ability to be yourself as opposed to putting on airs and graces in a vain attempt to impress.” (‘Where is the True Dominance’ – penned, 9 Sept. 2005)
“When I received your message this morning, I was in the company of several people, one knows me, the other knows “of” me but not of my path that I follow. I excused myself and messaged you back. The person who knows me asked me afterward if the message was from someone who meant something to me. I smiled and asked why, the words that were spoken sums it all up … ‘You simply smiled and looked as if an angel had touched your heart’.
What I didn’t say was that an angel doesn’t just touch it, she owns it, completely.
Being owned … complex yet simple at the utmost.
The agreed amount of control, be it total or partial that one has over another. Boundaries that restrict and limits that cease to be your own and become someone else’s while at the same time, your own may be taken into consideration, that is not the owned one’s choice.
Safety, security, and the knowing without a shadow of a doubt that should you need a shoulder it will be there, maybe not at that moment, but it will be.
A bond that exists between two people through mutual trust and respect, needing no external mark purely because the burning desire to serve in whatever way is deemed by one’s owner is mark enough.
Wanting and needing to suffer for one special person because it excites and pleases them and at the same time accepting that if it does not fulfill your needs, that it is still perfect.
The knowledge that facing your fears for one’s owner is a good thing, since it makes you a better person, stronger because you have faced them, safe within the knowledge that your owner is watching you closely, listening, absorbing and that no safe word is required. That difficult interactions that involve fears will be discussed afterward. Perhaps not within the hours after but a day or two later and that refacing fears again and again will make those fears dissipate.
Obedience, without hesitation or doubt, unquestioning of any requests or tasks assigned. But knowing that afterward, should the need to ask about a task be there, that you can and if one’s owner feels an explanation is needed, one will be given.
The intense burning desire to improve, to better one’s self, to know that every word, every action reflects not only upon one’s self but upon one’s owner. The utter despair that chokes you and makes you nauseous when you do not succeed is as bitter as the depth of personal pleasure when one’s owner smiles and lets you know that you’ve done good.
If I have left out something about being owned, I beg forgiveness. In my heart and soul, I know that I am owned, every inch of my body is mine to look after for you, my owner, since it too is yours. The ecstatic feeling of waking up each morning knowing I am yours and yours alone fills me with boundless emotion.” (‘On Being Owned’ – penned, 19 Feb. 2009)
I know and comfortably embrace who I am. Should you choose to label me, that is your choice. And should you wonder, just how two Tops interact, let me tell you … like two porcupines … very, VERY carefully.