Today I have a special treat to share from Grace R. Duncan. She’s taking us inside the mind and heart of a Dom, including a peek into her new release Deception.
Thanks for visiting, Grace!
“Kink” is a very broad word. It’s often automatically associated with BDSM (or Bondage & Discipline, Domination & Submission, Sadism & Masochism), but really, kink involves anything that is non-vanilla sex. However, it is BDSM that I would like to discuss today as my kink month post. I have been involved myself, with many different aspects of BDSM. I love it, love most of the things involved with it (though there are plenty of kinks I won’t touch with a ten-foot pole). But one of the things I get into most is the Domination & submission part of it.
Last week, I talked on Shira Anthony’s blog, about the submissive mindset in a D/s relationship. I am submissive and it is an easy thing for me to understand. However, turning that around to understand the Dominant mindset is quite a bit more challenging. It’s almost like a different language.
But for Deception and, to a lesser extent, Choices, I needed to be able to understand that. In Choices, Bathasar was brand new to dealing with and controlling a pleasure slave. As he was learning, so was I, so it was a bit easier. However, Cyrus, a pleasure slave for years, had been exposed to it much longer and I needed to be able to understand that much better if I was going to write about it accurately.
The problem that comes with this, like any other aspect of BDSM is that being a Dominant (like being a submissive) is extremely individualized. What one Dom might tell me a different Dom might immediately contradict. For every Dominant out there, there is a different way of doing things. I wouldn’t be able to capture and write about a “standard” Dom since there really isn’t any such thing.
Still, there was one I was very close to that I could ask: my own Sir. So I sat him down and picked his brain about his side of the D/s relationship. One thing both sides agree on: there is no right way to “do” D/s. As such, there’s no “right” way to Dom.
And while there is no “right” way—because everyone has a different way—there is a wrong way. Avoiding safety, ignoring the single most important part of BDSM, which is the SSC credo: safe, sane and consensual. Some argue that SSC isn’t necessary in fiction. I disagree and I’ll leave it at that, as it’s beyond the scope of my post here. (Seriously, I could go on longer than Choices about all the aspects and facets of a BDSM relationship and kink play.)
Anyway, the first question I had to ask my Sir was, “why do you like to Dom?” Honestly, I already knew part of it, because this is the way he thinks–to do something for me that I want. That’s the easy part. But being a Dominant involves a lot more than that and I needed to dig deeper if I was going to write one. (I am also well aware that, for some people, it’s not a “like” issue. Some people just are dominant or submissive and would never be comfortable switching, which is fine. My Sir and I are like that.)
So, what did he say? Something that had already been brewing in my mind for Cyrus, anyway: to have something he can control.
In our normal, modern-day world, there are often things that happen beyond our control. When this happens, when they get crazy, a Scene can help my Sir feel like he’s actively controlling something. He plans, organizes and sets up the Scene and every aspect of it is up to him.
Cyrus, likewise, has very little in his life that he can control. He is a slave. In the end, what he does and with whom is not up to him. His body is not even his to control. And it drives him nuts. On top of that, his first sexual experiences, while consensual, were far from pleasant and those are always in the back of his mind.
One way he can find a bit of control in his otherwise out-of-control world, is to dominate whenever he can. Until Deception, that didn’t happen often. Usually, when he and Nadir were requested together, he could guide Nadir in the ways he wanted, but that was about it.
However, in Deception, he finds himself being given much more responsibility in dominating not only Nadir, but also, now, Teman.
Now, he is faced with doing much more than guiding and controlling the sex between himself and his lover, but taking care of Nadir’s and Teman’s submissive mindsets, dominating them completely and then even planning a full scene!
Needless to say, Cyrus… well, he was quite conflicted to find himself in a fully dominant position. It grows over the course of the book, but being the one both responsible for and in control of a full Scene is a lot more than anything he’d done before with them. And it simultaneously thrills him and makes him incredibly nervous.
But as he started thinking it through, he realized that, having helped their slave master, Salehi, train other slaves, he did have experience. He really did know what to do. He just needed to plan carefully and as he does, he realizes he can handle it.
Even knowing this, when the time comes to actually do it, he is, once more nervous.
CYRUS paced the length of the bathing room, trying to calm his nerves. He barely noticed the deep-blue silk tunic, pants, and slippers he was wearing. He’d finally started to get used to wearing clothes again, so it wasn’t nearly as uncomfortable as it once was. Instead of being miserable, he was just slightly uncomfortable, and he knew it would get better the more he wore them. The clothes were important; he needed to help establish his dominant position over both Teman and Nadir, and being dressed when they were naked was part of that.
His cock was out of its cage and hard, and that caused him more problems, much more than the clothes. But he’d requested this, not wanting to have to fight with the cage when the time came.
The biggest problem he was having was his nerves. He’d been trying to calm himself and get over his nervousness for more than a week, since before he’d been to see Salehi. But every time he’d calmed down, every time he thought he had it, his nerves would unreasonably kick in, and he’d worry he wouldn’t do it right, wouldn’t handle them right, or something.
And now it was here.
Teman and Nadir were in the main room, slowly edging themselves. They wore thick gold cock rings, thinner glans rings, and the jeweled plugs Cyrus liked. They’d been denied since his visit to Salehi, and both were more than ready for release. Nadir had nearly been glued to Cyrus for the last couple of days as his denial hit the point of desperation. Bathasar sat on a chair in front of them, watching them, waiting for the evening to begin.
And Cyrus needed to get over his nerves and just do it.
He could handle this. He knew it. But when he’d been doing it for Nadir, just the two of them alone, it had been different. Then, he knew what to do because he knew Nadir. He knew Teman too; that wasn’t a problem.
But now he wasn’t just doing something for them, he was also trying to show Bathasar there was a good and positive way to give pain. He knew there was an element of convincing he had to do with this. And any pain play Teman might want in the future was dependent on this evening.
While Cyrus has more riding on the success of this particular Scene than the care of his submissives, he is still very aware that the main thing he must care for is them. He understands that to give to them, he must give them the chance to please him. But ultimately, what he cares most about is making sure that they are cared for.
So, in the end, while he loves that he can finally control a small portion of his life, he’s well aware of how precious that bit is and how much he must balance to do it right. But he loves it and the challenge to reach that balance is a big part of what makes that dominance so attractive to him. Being able to keep that balance gives him the confidence to do and go after the things he needs when faced with the big choices.
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For more from Grace, check out her website here: http://www.grace-duncan.com
or on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/GraceRDuncan2
To check out the entire Golden Collar series, head over to the Dreamspinner Press page here: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/index.php?cPath=976
Be sure to check the Facebook page and visit my other blog stops in celebration of Deception’s release for more chances to win!
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Cyrus and Nadir first met as hungry orphans on Behekam’s streets at twelve years old. They became friends, then partners in the thievery that enabled them to survive, and as they passed their days together, they fell in love. When they are both taken as pleasure slaves in the opulent palace of the Malik of Neyem, love becomes more complicated.
Rumors of an attempt on Malik Bathasar’s life put Cyrus and Nadir’s relationship to the test—they must pose convincingly as intimate slaves to the young malik as part of a plan to lure the assassin into the open. Teman—Malik Bathasar’s real personal pleasure slave and true lover—was once trained by Cyrus for the same duties, and the attraction and care Cyrus developed for him then still remains. The Malik of Neyem proves an easy man to love and Nadir’s feelings for him grow while they’re pretending to love each other.
Cyrus and Nadir care deeply for each other but they’ve forgotten the first rule of love: communicate in honesty. Their love remains strong enough to weather the changes—if they have the courage not only to face the coming dangers, but to put aside deception and find their truth.
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One of the things I love best in m/m is the unpredictability of power dynamics, so to see a submissive be placed in a dominant role would be fun to read. And it raises the interesting point of whether or not it’s true dominance…
It’s those power dynamics that have drawn me into writing m/m stories. I think there’s a lot to be explored there because relationships between two people of the same gender have very different problems and conflicts than two people of opposite genders. Throw in a D/s relationship and everything gets complicated quickly.
There are submissives that are *so* submissive that they couldn’t conceive of being dominant. There are Dominants who are forced into a submission that isn’t truly submission. And then there are others that are somewhere in between. So it really depends on where they are, who they are, deep down, that would determine something like that.
Thanks for the reply!
Interesting. I know I could never dominate another. Of course, from the sound of it, Cyrus has knowledge in it, so doing it isn’t so hard as probably doing it with so much emotional weight put upon it. Because yes, there is definitely a way to do pain right. *grins*
I’ve never read your books. But after reading this snippet, definitely going to take a gander…
Thank you so much! I do hope you enjoy them.
I couldn’t dominate, either. I am very firmly submissive and am happy where I am. But yes, Cyrus has spent several years learning the right way to give pain, seeing the wrong things and *knowing* they’re wrong, so he’s got a lot to draw on. But I know (from my own Sir) that knowing these things, seeing them and even helping from a *helping* perspective is quite different than being responsible for the Scene. So, yeah he had a lot to work through with it, but Cyrus is a lot stronger than he gives himself credit for. 🙂
Thanks for stopping by and replying! 😀