She met him at a party. She hadn’t really wanted to go but her parents had said that it was not optional. A show of their wealth and importance; what did she care for that? Idiots, all of these boys her mother found. Flowers and chocolates – she just wasn’t interested. She didn’t think she would ever meet anyone who would do the things that she wanted them to. She had tried to drag her flatmate, Catriona, along just to make the thing bearable but she was a student nurse and wouldn’t finish shift until much later. So alone she went.
She had been much happier since going off to university; there she could be who she wanted to be, away from the trappings and the idea of who she really was. She hadn’t been home in a while and was greeted with the usual feeling of dread as she approached. An evening of polite smiles as she tolerated her parents’ friends and acquaintances. She grabbed a glass as she entered the room; the party was already in full swing. Her mother engaged her before she really had time to look around, her arm grasping her around the waist. This was never a good sign. She switched off as her mum extolled the virtues of her latest match. She was used to it and would simply go through the motions as ever. Whoever he was she would probably dance, maybe more, but nothing that actually gave away anything of herself. Sometimes she wondered if that might be the better option, just let her truth be known and watch them all slip away as they struggled to make sense of her.
She had endured the party for a while when she felt him behind her. She was watching her father talk business over the other side of the room at the time; her mother, she noticed, had drunk too much again. She was suddenly fixed to the spot as an odd charge surged through her. His arm reached around and took the glass from her hand, setting it on the table. Then, with he other hand, he pulled her with him onto the dance floor. She thought she opened her mouth to speak but really she did not. She seemed to be moving by his will and she struggled to take control of herself. She looked at him. He was probably the most interesting looking man she had seen. Not classically handsome but certainly devastatingly attractive. There was just something. She couldn’t put her finger on it.
At last, coming to her senses, she spoke. “Perhaps I didn’t want to dance with you.” Now out of her mouth, the words sounded weak, not the feeling she had hoped to portray. “We both know that you did,” he replied, not with arrogance but with a simple statement of fact that she could not deny. They continued to dance. She felt drawn to this man almost against her will and although she could not make sense of it, she accepted it even in the very beginning. She knew that any fight she put up would be a pretence and somehow, she knew that he was aware of that too. Whatever the battle was, it was already fought and won and the rest was mere theatre.
“Come,” he said, offering his hand to her once again. She followed him out onto the terrace. He stopped in the shadows and pressed her up against the wall. “God, you are beautiful,” he said just before his mouth enveloped hers. His kiss was fierce but it expressed the words that he had not uttered. She felt herself being pulled into it, almost painful in its intensity. The weight of his body against hers, the cold granite against her back, the heat that seemed to be tearing through her; it all left her breathless. He moved off her and took her hands. His eyes met hers and they looked at each other, each seeing something there; something dark, something deep, something familiar. “I won’t apologise for my presumptions.” His voice was low in her ear. “But if I have misread the situation here then please set me straight and I will not bother you again.” A quiet, “No. You have not,” was her reply. “Good. Then I will bid you goodnight as I have to go.”
He put his arm through hers and walked her back to the entrance of the ballroom. There he took her hands in his again and faced her. He moved his hands pushing them together so that they were up-stretched in prayer motion, engulfing hers and then curled the fingers of each around them and let them drop, still joined together, to their sides. “Goodnight sweet girl. Let me know if you wish to meet again. After that I shall take the lead but I need to know that I am what you want.” And with that he was gone.
She stood alone for a while just thinking about what had just happened. Confused was not in it. But she could not shake the feeling that she had. She was drawn to the man, there was no doubt about it. In any other circumstance she may have found his behaviour rude not to say creepy, but something had passed there between them. She felt that he knew her, that he saw inside her and that he shared her dark desires. Aware of the music and her mother calling she slowly came to her senses. It was then that she noticed the card in her hand. It was black and in white writing it bore the words, ‘Sir Romeo’, and underneath, ‘Dominant.’ At the bottom of the card was a number and an email address. So what he had said was true; the ball really was in her court. She felt as if she had tasted her sin and knew that she must again. What was this? They had only kissed, although she knew that it was much more than that. She put the card in her purse and went to find her mother; she felt an overwhelming need to be away from this place now.