On Monday night (May 31), Mischief returned from San Francisco and had dinner with the Once and Future King. The purpose of dinner was negotiating the terms of the marriage. In my mind’s eye, I like to picture it as 17th century Burghers negotiating a nuptial contract.

“Yes, zee bride vill perform oral sex upon rekvest. Her dowry, howefer, vill haf to be kompensated zignificantly!”

Allison would get marriage, but agreed to sacrifice the Mischiefettes. Metaphorically speaking, you understand. Unless you’re Abraham, there’s little point in having them just to sacrifice them. In exchange for little Zamboni and Peripatetica remaining theoretical ovum, Gríos would support Mischief (apparently, he has money… not, y’know, Money, but more than, say, any of us reading this) in a fairly lush style, send her back to school full-time to finish her Masters, and let her work on her book.

Gríos would agree to compromise on monogamy, working out a sort-of closed swinging contract that he and Mischief would only fool around together, and with both having veto authority over potential partners.

The first red flag went up for me when I learned that Gríos thought it would be a “great” idea for Mischief to keep me in her life, and even for us to continue exploring a D/s relationship (minus actual sex). I’ve encountered this kind of thing before, and it amounts to a man who isn’t interested in the work and effort needed to properly foster a BDSM dynamic farming it out to someone else. Like kinky globalization.

It’s one thing if you’re discussing a couple who’ve been together for ten years, and the wife just wants to eat at a fancy restaurant once in a while rather than cook at home. But making this play when you haven’t even, oh, say, figured out your vows? That’s pure disinterest.

Trying to convince herself that everything was working, Allison took Gríos to meet her parents, which threatened to be awkward since he was three when Neil Armstrong walked on the moon, and she was three when the Challenger exploded.

Everything went smoothly, and the first weekend (Mischief works a normal schedule, so weekends actually matter) as reunited soonlyweds loomed. Their first real time alone in months.

To mark the occasion, Gríos took her to a nice dinner, after which they spent the evening alone at home, getting reacquainted BDSM play party at a house in Hollywood. A really shitty party attended by drunken, unconcerned doms taking things too far with submissives too heavily altered or emotionally damaged to say “Red.” I’ve been to parties like this, and it’s bad juju. You feel like you need a shower afterwards.

Mischief started texting me, playfully at first, and then more distressed as the anxiety built. Finally she called, needing an ear to absorb her discomfort and growing frustration as she perceived that Gríos was testing her. Auditioning her to see how she would handle his fantasy world of the swing club he owns and the constant sport-fucking. Even if that were acceptable behavior, once you’ve signed the contract, you’ve agreed to the sale. What’s left to test?

They left the party, stopped at Mel’s Diner for food, and when dinner was over, so was the engagement. Mischief had once again stood her ground, which is how she ended up here. We stayed up into the wee small hours, just her, me and the left half of my face, and I did my best to give genuine, thoughtful responses rather than simple platitudes.

Mostly, I think she just needed someone to be a sounding board while she worked it out. And it was convenient to have a man who valued her and found her attractive doing it, even if that man was Quasimodo. It was still good for her ego.

Since then, she’s slept here every night except Tuesday. I think, in a way, the loft has come to represent a place of safety and security for her as it used to for me. A funhouse-mirror version of the life she’s walked away from, complete with the distorted reflection of a man.

Also, she’s poking and testing to see if it’s only her trust in Gríos that’s been shattered, or if it’s trust in general.  I have a slew of my own opinions about Gríos’ underlying motivations, but I wasn’t there and I don’t know the man, so I’ll leave my conjecture unspoken.

As for what we’re doing, we don’t know, and right now isn’t the time to try and work it out. She primarily needs someone to be constant, honest and capable of displaying affection. Whatever this is, though, it’s easy. Effortless, like we’ve known each other for years. If I were prone to rebounding, I’d think I were, but it isn’t that. I’ve already turned down advances from other girls I would have jumped at on the rebound.

It’s just… a really good synergy. Even with the offspring question kind of tabled, we’ve still got bridges to cross. And we will. But right now, we’re just kinda happy running around on this side of the river.

P.S. The face is now fine.

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