Cindy's crying but it ain't no use,
She's got a habit and she can't get loose.
- Tom Paxton
There is inside the most innocent of us, a darkness that we are reluctant to admit to. Each of us is like a coin, double sided, or maybe like a jewel, where only certain parts catch the light and are visible, not only to others, but often to ourselves. The remainder hides in the dark.
I was brought up in what today seems to be a rather old fashioned way, in that from an early age it was drummed into me that boys did not hit girls, men did not hit women. Indeed, this was so often repeated to me in my childhood that even today it forms a major part of my psychological make up. I have never raised my hand to a woman in my life, and I don't believe that I ever could unless it was in extreme self defence and I was literally in fear of being killed or seriously injured. Likewise, I have nothing but contempt for those men who think that it's alright to slap a woman around, keep them in line, because to me these inadequate cowards are not real men, however well muscled they may be, they are just small schoolyard bullies hiding behind their fists with someone weaker than themselves. Women, to me, are there to be treated as ladies unless they demonstrate themselves to be something else. Unfortunately, an increasing number of modern women seem hell bent on proving themselves to be anything but ladies, with their foul mouths and beer swilling habits, their insistence on the right to tattoo their bodies and dress like hookers, but still be treated with respect. I blame feminism, but I digress here. This is not about women in general, but about one particular woman.
I said earlier that I had never hit a woman in my life. This is not strictly true, I have never used violence against a woman for the sake of it, or because of my own inadequacies, but there was one incident, one brief moment, when things slipped and I looked deep into the shadows.
I met Cindy at a party, one of those bring a bottle affairs in a somewhat upmarket part of town, where the hosts were not quite high enough up the social ladder to serve canapés and cocktails but not quite in the cheap wine and spin a bottle category either. They were a young couple climbing the social ladder, but with their feet still on one of the lower rungs, and this was a housewarming party after they had pooled their joint salaries to afford the best that they could, even though it would mean living on beans for a few years.
The party was pretty mediocre, as parties go. I knew few of the people there, and most of them bored me. It was while I was wandering rather aimlessly from room to room, looking for something to capture my attention, that I found myself chatting to Cindy. She'd arrived with a friend, but the friend had soon found an unattached man to flutter her eyelashes at, and, like myself, Cindy was left at something of a loose end.
She intrigued me from the start. She was probably in her mid twenties, but with a look in her eyes that said she was much older inside than out. She was attractive enough, with a mop of dark curly hair falling naturally over her shoulders, smartly but casually dressed in a well cut trouser suit that showed off her trim figure to perfection, and outwardly friendly. There was, however, an air about her, a feeling similar to the one that you get when looking through the bars at a caged animal. I was simultaneously attracted but also slightly repelled by her, and I couldn't quite put my finger on the source of my unease. In the end, the attraction won, for a while at least.
She was as bored with the party as I was, and eager for company, so we talked and laughed together for a while, then as the party broke up we exchanged phone numbers and agreed to meet up for a drink together sometime. I phoned her a few days later and we began seeing each other regularly, usually going to quiet bars or small cosy restaurants. I liked her a lot, but always I was aware of that brittle edge to her, that tautness in her manner that made me think before I spoke every time.
She shared an apartment with another girl, so if we wanted to be alone we went to my place. We didn't sleep together for a while, there was something about her that made me wary of even broaching the subject, but we enjoyed each other's company and she always kissed me passionately when she left to go home to her own place. It wasn't until we'd spent an evening on the couch together drinking wine and watching a movie that we began to get rather hot with each other, and I asked her if she'd like to take it further, to stay the night, or at least to go to bed with me.
She broke off from the clinch and looked at me, not in a shy way, or nervous, more a calculating look, as if she was seeing me for the first time and weighing me up.
"O.K." she said "If you're sure."
This was the kind of thing I usually said to the women, so I was a bit surprised. I mean guys are supposed to be up for it all the time, right? And here she was, treating me like I was a shy virgin or something. I didn't say anything, just kissed her and led her into the bedroom.
Now I am not one to brag, but I have had my fair share of fun between the sheets and I like to think that I know what I'm doing when it comes to pleasuring a woman. I know where to stroke, where to kiss, where to lick and nuzzle. I can be slow and gentle or fast and passionate; I know exactly how to push the right buttons to turn on the responses.
But nothing worked with Cindy. Absolutely nothing.
But I'm getting ahead of myself. First I have to tell you about the marks.
I started to gently undress her, but she pushed me away and stripped off her clothes herself in an almost bored way. When she was completely naked, she turned to face me, and then turned her back to me, and I sucked my breath in sharply.
She was gorgeous, absolutely gorgeous, the most perfect body that I have seen in the flesh.
She was also covered in marks, like old small scars, on her back, buttocks, thighs, legs, breasts. They were hardly noticeable unless you were really looking for them, but after you'd seen a few then more and more would become obvious.
"What the hell happened?" I asked "Were you in some sort of accident?"
"No, nothing like that," she replied quietly "I'll tell you about it some other time, OK? Meanwhile don't worry about it, just come to bed and enjoy me."
So we went to bed, but I can't say I really enjoyed it. Oh sure, we had sex, and I petted her, kissed and caressed her nipples, stroked her clitoris with my fingers then went down on her and tongued her wet slit as she lay back, and I entered her and rode her welcoming hips, thrusting my cock into her with long, slow strokes, gradually building to a passionate gallop and emptying my hot cum deep into her as she bucked and writhed under me.
But all the while I was aware that something was missing. For a start, she didn't cum herself, although she encouraged me to. She seemed to enjoy it, but in a detached way, and although she made all the right moves there seemed to be no passion in it, no fire. I was puzzled to hell. Usually the women I slept with gave far more of a response, and the ones who couldn't, or didn't, generally wouldn't go to bed with me anyhow.
Over the next couple of weeks we went to bed several more times, trying different positions, exploring each other, but still she didn't orgasm with me. I got a better look at her body too, and realised that the small marks were indeed old scars. I still had no idea what had made them though.
It was maybe two or three weeks after our first sexual session that she opened up to me, but that was after a more than usually successful encounter.
"John," she asked as we undressed "do you think you could be a bit...well...rougher?"
"How rough?" I asked. There had been one or two who liked me to fuck them hard and fast rather than have long slow foreplay followed by gentle love making. If that was what turned her on, I was OK with it.
"Could you spank me maybe?" she asked.
"Spank you? Well I'm not really into that but sure, if you want me to, I could give it a try."
"Great!" she answered, and making me sit naked on the bed, she bent herself over my knee, her plump bottom raised over my lap, ivory pink and inviting.
"Come on then! Spank me John." She said excitedly.
I raised my right hand and gave her a playful open palm slap on her right buttock.
"No!" she said, "Harder!"
I smacked her again, a little more power behind it.
"Harder! Really hard! Please!"
I looked at her naked back for a moment, wondering, then I thought "O.K, if that's what you want." And I brought my hand down hard, a stinging blow that cracked like a pistol shot on her bare ass.
She wriggled and hissed "Yes! Oh yes! More please!"
I smacked her again, then again, and she began to grunt to the blows, but still urging me to slap harder. I brought my palm down across her naked backside over and over, until my hand stung and her buttocks glowed red, and she became more and more excited as the spanking went on, her cries of pleasure becoming louder and louder, until suddenly she said "Enough! Quick, on the bed, quick!"
We climbed naked onto the bed, and she pushed me down and crouching over me, she bent and began to suck and tongue my already hard cock, thrusting it so deep down her throat she almost gagged, stimulating me to a steel hard erection, but before I came in her mouth she flung herself back and said "Now! Fuck me! Fuck me really hard!"
And so I did, thrusting into her hard and fast as she bucked and writhed under me, moaning and crying like an animal, until in what seemed like seconds I came in a massive orgasm, feeling my hot cum spurt into her and as it did she cried out and I knew that for the first time with me she had climaxed too, her nails digging deep into my back and her legs wrapped around me, pulling me deep into her as her sore bottom bounced on the mattress. I threw my head back and moaned with sheer pleasure as I emptied myself inside her.
Afterwards, as we lay side by side, she rolled to face me and said "You once asked me about these marks, still want to know? You might regret it if I tell you."
"Yes, I still want to know." I answered, thinking that nothing she could tell me would bother me that much.
The next thing she said took me by surprise, however.
"When was your first sexual experience John?" she asked me.
"What? My first? Well, depends how you mean it. First kiss? First petting session? First full sex?"
"Well, I guess I got interested in girls around 14 years old, had my first kiss at 15, first petting session about 16 and lost my virginity just turned 18. Why?"
"Hmmmm. Want to know how old I was?" she asked.
"Yes, if you want to tell me."
"What? How? Who?" I managed to choke out eventually.
"I lost my virginity to my father at eleven years old, he raped me." She answered, totally matter of fact, as if she was discussing the weather.
"Jesus Christ! Did you tell anyone? Did they lock the bastard up?"
"No. I never told anyone until now. I'll tell you how it happened. One day, he took me down into the basement, stripped me naked and chained me to the wall. Then he got a whip, and he flogged me until I was barely conscious, then he took my virginity. Afterwards he made me an ice cream sundae. He knew how much I loved them."
"Dear God! Why didn't you tell someone? Your mother? Anyone at all!"
"Oh my mother knew. She was there watching."
"She watched? Your own mother? She watched him do this to her child? What kind of people were they?"
"Oh they were good people. They still are. It's just how he is, it's his way. That was just the first time, after that it was pretty regular, whipping me and then having sex with me."
"Cindy!" I was yelling by now "He's a monster, a paedophile, a sadist, you have to go to the police! He has to be punished!"
"Of course some people would see him like that," she said "but he's a good man really, a wonderful father. Anyhow, all he did was introduce me to a kind of sex that I grew to love and need."
By this time my head was spinning, I was barely aware of having any logical thought left, it was as if she'd punched me hard to the jaw, I felt stunned and sick. Still she went on talking.
"This went on all through my childhood and teens. After a while he brought my brother into these sessions too. They would take turns to whip me and have sex with me, because that's the way it is with them, the men dominate and the women submit. It's best really. Men are stronger than women."
She paused for a moment, then went on.
"After I left home, I felt very lost for a while. I turned to drugs, slept rough, picked up guys in bars for sex, took them to motels and had them hit me, harder the better. It was the only way I could enjoy the kind of sex I craved all the time. It was dangerous, of course. I'm lucky I never got badly hurt or killed. I hit rock bottom, really ended up in the gutter. One day I looked at myself and realised if I didn't do something I wasn't going to see another year out. It took a hell of a lot of effort, but I got off drugs, cleaned myself up, found a job and a place to live, and here I am now, an outwardly respectable member of society. Ironic, really, don't you think?"
To be honest, by this point I didn't know what to think.
"Problem is," she went on "I still have the urges, still need the pain, it's like a drug I can't kick. That's why I need someone like you, John, somebody I can trust, somebody who will treat me the way I want even if he doesn't really enjoy it. Will you do that for me John? Help me? Give me what I need?"
"Cindy! I just don't know if I can. This is all totally horrendous to me! Your parents and brother are monsters!"
"No, they aren't," she said, "its just their way. They made me like I am, programmed me if you like, and they love me for it, and I love them. There's no harm done."
She looked me in the eyes, her fingers gently brushing the hair on my chest. She could see the look on my face and it seemed to amuse her if anything.
"You've never met anyone like me before, have you John?" she asked. "What are you thinking? Freak? Weirdo? Pervert? Oh yes, I'm all of those things and more. But I do nobody else any harm, it's my body, my pain, and I enjoy being what I am. All I'm asking you to do is to help me to be like this safely."
"So those marks," I said "they are from the abuse?"
"Oh John, don't think of it as abuse. But yes they are. My father tried very hard not to permanently mark me, he was very careful, but nobody is a machine, when you are whipped over and over for years then there will be the odd time when the lash bites just a bit too deeply, cuts the skin. Over time it mounts up. I don't mind. They remind me of how much he loves me."
I didn't say much more before she left that evening, I just muttered some half hearted agreement to try to do the kind of things that she craved for. I hoped that she wouldn't push it any further, I was still in a state of shock from what she'd told me, but a couple of days later she arrived at my place in the early evening carrying a hold all.
"I brought a few things for us to try." She said eagerly, and she emptied out a collection of straps, gags, handcuffs, and things that I didn't recognise but which made me shudder to look at.
"Of course we don't have to get into all this stuff straight away." She went on "I know you're new to this, so I thought we'd start out slowly, and work up to the real heavy stuff over time. We'll just go with this for tonight, if that's OK with you." And with that she picked up a riding crop, heavy brown leather with a plaited shaft about two feet long.
"You can just use this on me for now." She said, and vanished into the bedroom. I followed her with a heavy heart, wishing that this wasn't happening.
She piled a couple of pillows in the centre of the bed, then quickly stripping naked she draped herself over them, face down, the pillows under her hips so her buttocks stood up higher than the rest of her.
"OK John, take the whip and use it on me." She said "Once you've got the knack you'll probably be able to make me cum just with the pain alone, then I'll take care of you afterwards. Just hit me anywhere, space the blows, and try not to break the skin."
I picked up the crop, stood over her, but didn't raise it.
"Oh come on!" she said impatiently "You know it's what I want."
I hefted the whip in my hand, took reluctant aim, and brought it down sharply across her upper back. She wriggled and gasped.
"Not bad," she said "but harder than that please."
I lifted the crop again and struck her across her pert ass with a loud smack. She wriggled again.
"Better, but even harder John. I'll say if you go too far."
I slashed the crop down a third time, very hard across the twin mounds of her bottom, and immediately a bright red line blossomed across them. She drew her breath in sharply. Again I brought the whip down hard, and again, and again. Red wheals were now criss-crossing her buttocks and she began to moan, not in pain but with pleasure, like a woman being sensually stroked by a skilful lover. I whipped her again, seeing the ivory skin flush where the crop landed. Her moaning grew louder, and she began to wriggle her hips on the pillows. Suddenly I realised that this was exciting me. I could feel that I had an erection, that I was getting aroused by flogging her naked body. It brought me to my senses. With a shudder of self disgust, I threw the whip into the corner.
"I'm sorry Cindy," I said "but I can't do this. It's not me. I can't handle it."
She looked up at me with disappointment written across her face. Silently she got up and dressed, and gathering up her things, she made for the door. As she reached it she turned.
"I'm sorry too John. I shouldn't have put you through that. I still need this though, and if I can't get it from you, then I'll have to find it somewhere else."
And then she was gone. I never expected to see her again, but I did, just once, for a short time. It was about two weeks later. My phone rang, and when I picked it up I heard her familiar voice.
"Hi! It's your friendly neighbourhood pervert."
"Cindy! How are you? It's good to hear from you."
"Thanks John. Look, I need a favour, somewhere to stay for a few days. Can I crash at your place? I won't be any trouble, I promise."
"Of course you can," I heard myself saying, "but what's wrong with your own apartment?"
"I'll explain when I get there." She said. Half an hour later she turned up, carrying a small case of clothes. She looked ill, there were dark bags under her eyes and a fragile air about her, but she smiled brightly when I opened the door to her.
"Hi," she said, stepping inside "I've been out of town for a few days. I went to visit my family."
Warning bells began to ring in my head. "Oh yes!" I said "Did you enjoy it?"
"Oh wow yes. I'd almost forgotten how much we love each other. It was a great weekend. I had a wonderful time, we all did. Look, is it alright if I take a shower? I think I need one."
"Sure," I said "go ahead." and with that she stripped off in front of me. The word "shy" wasn't in Cindy's dictionary. As she pulled her clothes off, my heart lurched. Her body was covered in red lines, whip marks, from her shoulders to the backs of her thighs and some curling around her sides and onto her breasts and belly. The inside of each thigh was a mass of bruises.
"Dear God Cindy!" I cried.
"Now you know why I want to stay here for a while John. My room mate is a nice girl but she doesn't know about my......habits, shall we say....and she'd freak out if she saw this. Just let me stay until the marks fade, four or five days should be enough."
So of course I let her stay. We shared the same bed, but there was no sex, somehow the thought of making love to a girl who'd recently been flogged and penetrated by her father and brother wasn't very appealing. Instead I just held her tortured body close as she slept, wondering what the hell I'd got myself into.
A few days later she left to go back to her own place. As she was leaving, she put her hand up and gently stroked my cheek.
"Poor John," she said "poor sweet normal John. It was stupid of me to think that I could ever make you into someone like me. I'm stupid and selfish. Thanks for putting up with me." She gave me a swift kiss, and then she was gone. It was the last time that I ever saw her in the flesh. I heard through friends that she'd moved out of her shared apartment, after that she dropped off my radar completely, but it wasn't the last I ever heard about her.
A year went by,and then one day a face leaped out at me from the front of a newspaper. Cindy's face. She was dead. She'd been murdered. A cold fist reached into my heart and closed over it.
The police never revealed details about how she died, but I had a friend or two in the right places, and I had them find out for me. She'd last been seen leaving a bar with a man she'd met there. She was found a few hours later. It wasn't pleasant hearing. She'd been beaten to a pulp, there were cigarette burns to her breasts and genitals, she'd been raped and sodomised and finally her throat had been slashed open with a piece of broken glass. She'd bled to death on a piece of filthy waste ground surrounded by dog shit and condoms and used needles. The post mortem showed that she had alcohol and heroin in her blood.
They never got anyone for it. I doubt if they looked very hard. To the police, she was just another dead junkie; they had more important things to do. She'd picked up the wrong guy this time, one whose limits were far beyond her own, and she'd paid the price.
I didn't go to the funeral. It wasn't that I didn't want to, it was just that I knew that if I did I'd take a baseball bat and her father, or her brother, or both, would end up on life support and I'd be in jail, and what would be the point, it wouldn't bring Cindy back. She had gone on to a place where there was no more pain, where nobody would ever use or abuse her again. I hoped that she was at peace.
I'm not a religious man, but if there is a God, which I very much doubt, then I hope that he has a special place for people like her, the ones who have been twisted and distorted by others who were supposed to love them and care for them.
Cindy left me with a legacy. One that I would rather not have. For a few moments in time she shone a ray of light into a dark room inside me, and I didn't like what I saw writhing and crawling in there. She awoke something that won't go back to sleep. There are times when I see a pretty girl and before I can check myself I imagine her tied to a post, naked and screaming, lash marks crossing her body and the whip heavy in my hand.
We all have that dark side, it only need awakening. There are times when we look in a mirror and a stranger gazes back at us. We think that we know ourselves, that we are creatures of sanity and logic, but in reality we are full of smoke and dreams. Because we cannot see our demons does not mean that they don't stand behind our shoulder. I know that mine do. They cannot control me, make me give in to them, because as I said at the beginning, I was brought up to have an abhorrence for hurting a woman, yet even inside me the blackness lurks, awaiting it's chance.
Cindy would have understood this. She touched me, and that touch changed me forever. I pray for her soul to a God that I don't even believe in. May he answer for the sake of us all.