They were to meet in a park for a real introduction. It was a favourite of hers, a pretty area surrounded by small forests on either side. An overcast day did not hinder the usual park fanfare of children playing, joggers and those out for a casual stroll. The one secret anomaly was her, waiting on a park bench near the playground just as she'd chosen, just as she'd wished. She sat calmly but with a tinge of apprehension in her posture. After all, this was not going to be conventional and it tested everything she knew little about. He was the one who may become the instrument in her learning of self, in her extension of will and trust. She didn't understand how it would occur or how she should feel but the unexpected nature of it all was enough to keep her sitting, pensively, waiting, even though parts of her wanted to flee.
He'd been watching her from nearby, from a place she couldn't see. He'd enjoyed watching her squirm in her subtleness. He'd watched her for her natural postures and detected the nuances of her anxiousness. She was lovely in this for he knew through her writing that she was of strong mind and yet, outside the confines of the written word, she clearly was not the picture of confidence she's always painted herself to be. He'd anticipated this for so much confidence surely had flaws and flaws were malleable in unearthing truths that she hadn't lived yet.
He'd moved through the park to position himself behind her bench. She sat, her arms crossed across her chest to calm the building fidgeting. She mulled over the possibility that he probably wasn't coming but it was in her nature to wait and be patient for just a little longer. After all, wants from her sensual side drove her in ways she didn't understand. He moved behind her and placed a hand on her shoulder. She jumped slightly and her head whipped around to see who had gripped her. His face caused instant recognition but it did not ease her nerves for when she smiled and tried to stand, she felt his hand tense to hold her still. He moved his hand to gently hold her neck and leaned down to her ear to whisper "I've been watching you. You're lovely. Everything you want from me, you can have. I need your trust right now but you must choose it". It was here that he paused to garner her reaction and the eagerness in her breathing urged him to continue. "I need you to close your eyes, count to 30 and once you've done so, I want you to get up and walk into the forest behind you. Walk until you spot a tree tied with a red ribbon. When you do, I want you to walk to the tree and wrap your arms around it, clasping your hands together and closing your eyes. Begin now". She went to speak, to protest and inquire about a million things in his strange instructions but she felt the grip on her neck change from caress to a slight pressure, silently telling her that she may not speak. The pressure didn't subside and this caused her to shed her overthinking, sinking into what he'd asked. All the while, she found his fingers to be both soft and demanding which sent a shiver through her both with excitement and with slight fear. She closed her eyes and she began to whisper the numbers. His touch turned soft and he was gone. She battled against wanting to peek, to see him, his direction, but she felt compelled to follow his wishes.
Every whispered number sent shards of fractured thought through her mind. Should she be worried? Was everyone in the park watching her now? What was he playing at? Could she trust him? She thought so but she was scared. But even as she went on, curiosity and intrigue rushed through her mingling with doubt. On 30, she opened her eyes, looking around. Nothing had changed and no one had seemed to notice her. She stood up, facing the forest behind her. Looking around, she hesitated. What was through there? If she was nervous before, it did not compare to what she felt now. Her mind grabbed onto the touch of his fingers around her neck....the request for her to trust but to choose the trust. She stepped forward through the tall grass, the smaller poplars giving way to larger spruce and elms. The light began to dim slightly in places where the denseness of the upper foliage shaded everything below. The sounds of the people in the park began to lessen too as her senses began to clue into her steps and the natural sounds of the forest: soft wind, rustling trees, a few birds, the odd scurrying of squirrels. Ahead, she spotted a slight clearing with a beautiful thick elm upon which was tied a satiny red ribbon. She immediately looked around her in all directions, scanning. She half expected to see him somewhere nearby but quickly realized that he likely would not let her see him.
This was something she was meant to do by herself.
Walking up to the tree, she stopped a few feet away. She wanted to survey the forest again but something willed her not to. Some small spring of confidence welled -- something in her asked her to trust and to complete the task. Slowly she placed herself against the large tree, hesitating, reaching slowly around. Her hands found each other, just, as if the tree was particularly her size. She gulped, glancing to her side with difficulty, pressed tightly to the tree, unsure of why she needed to undertake such an odd thing. Remembering his last instruction, she closed her eyes and waited...
Each second that passed was a fraction of torture. The sense of isolation echoed around her. Every sound caused her senses to run in overdrive so much that her breathing became heavier. Each new sound made her head twitch and she fought to keep her eyes closed and her hands tight. She heard a few slight snaps, perhaps twigs. She couldn't be sure. It scared her but she kept clutching the large tree as if it somehow made her safer. Suddenly, she felt something slide around her wrists...a softness that interwove itself around them. She concentrated all her attention on the sensation and listened for any sound that would give away what was occurring and why. And then the soft thing around her wrists tightened, at first gently and then much harder. It hurt and she couldn't help but wince slightly as what was certainly ribbon bound her to the tree without apology. She first felt the need to struggle against the pain and she twisted slightly, trying to ease it. And then his voice was there, a cautionary whisper in her ear imploring "Stop struggling and feel what you know you want".
His words stopped her cold. Her breathing was short as the panic subsided as she gave into the sensation of her situation. Yes, her wrists hurt slightly but his gentle voice and his suggestion found its way into her mind. She felt bound organically. Her isolation here had painted a new recognition of want. It was the want of being asked to surrender to something in a present moment rather than fight against what was past or what was ahead. Heat rushed though her in delicious little waves as her breath slowed. She felt him lift her hair from the back of her neck and he laid a warm kiss on her skin there. A shiver moved up her spine and as he noticed, he twined his fingers around her hair, pulling it back. She breathed deeply and he kissed her neck once more. She listened as he stepped around her, slowly. She ached to be touched again, to feel his warmth. Things were still quiet. Again, his voice appeared suddenly nearby, whispering in her ear, his voice more low and serious. "You know I could do what I want with you here, yes?" Her heart raced and her voice quavered but she answered quickly. "Yes". She felt his hand on her bare leg, tracing a line from her ankle up beneath her skirt to her inner thigh. A visible tremor coursed through her. He smiled, releasing his hand. He placed his hands on her hips moving them up beneath her shirt to find her skin. She breathed in. His fingers traced a gentle line up her back and when they stopped, he pressed his fingers hard into her flesh and moved them down again. She arched her back slightly at the sensation. Her mind couldn't even assign words to this situation and what she felt.
He stepped away again and walked around to the other side of the tree. She waited for what seemed like ages for silence and isolation dispels time. Her body ached for more; to be subjected to sensations that mingled with her mind's release. She felt his hands on her wrists, working at the ribbon that held her fast. She felt the ribbon give and the blood rushed back as her arms, aching, tense and sore, braced the tree for balance. "May I open my eyes?" she inquired quietly. He smiled. "Yes". She opened them, stepping back from the tree. Her eyes fought to readjust to the palpitations of light in the forest. She saw him, standing there, the red ribbon in his hands. He stared deeply into her eyes and she returned the gaze, waiting for him. He smiled knowingly and walked to her. She watched him silently as he lifted her shirt slightly, baring her skin, asking her to hold her shirt there. He took the ribbon that had bound her wrists and gently began to wrap it around her waist a few times until he could tie it into a bow around her front. She watched him the whole time, waiting to see his eyes with a new longing that was quietly understood.
He finally looked at her. "Like the tree, you are bound to something that gives you life. It's nurtured by the ground, the sky, the air. From it's situation, it grows strong, trusting its purpose and the environment that supports it. You have grown a little too. You chose to trust. You stepped outside yourself to relinquish control and you gave into your senses, if even a little, letting your mind be nothing more than a construct that can be silenced in favour of what your senses and wants can teach you. When you go home, I want you to cut this ribbon into whatever size you need and each day, until I see you again, you are to wear a piece of this ribbon on you somewhere. It is to remind you that you are bound to me as long as you are willing to trust and to allow yourself to choose the things that allow you to be you". She mulled over his words carefully, drinking them fully. She smiled a little. He motioned to his side, the path at which she'd walked here. With no hesitation, she began to walk and after several paces she turned to see that he was gone, leaving her to see her tree, bound in its red ribbon, strong.