It doesn’t take me long to find my willingness. All i have to do is remember the night before. He had walked up behind me as i was playing on my computer.
“What are you doing?” he asks, his voice deceptively mild.
i shut the window. Quickly. Don’t want him to see that i’m on Facebook, so i shut the window real quick, like he wouldn’t notice. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
i sit really still, like maybe i’ll disappear myself if i don’t move. He’s silent too, for a long, long moment. Then i can’t stand it, and i say it, real fast, kind of mumbling, “Facebook,” i say. And i hang my head.
“I see.” His voice is calm, too calm. “And you closed it when I asked you what you were doing. Why is that?”
i can feel my face getting red, my heart is racing. “Um, i – um, i didn’t – didn’t – i didn’t want…” and my voice trails off.
“To tell me about it? Didn’t want me to know?” Cool, so cool, and i’m dying here, yes, that’s right, didn’t want you to know. Damn. So, lying too. Fuck me running. i’m in sooo much trouble. And i still can’t talk.
“You seem to be having a hard time. Go on to your room,” he says, “And follow the protocol for breaking the rules at level 2. Go quickly now, and I’ll come check on you later.”
He waits til i stand, and watches me scurry out of the room. i feel about two inches tall.
My room is my haven usually, i had free rein to design it just about any way i wanted to, and i love it. But tonight is different. Level 2. That’s a big deal.
i don’t pass anyone else on the way to my room. Safely behind the door, i quickly remove my clothes, my skirt and my shirt, even my shoes. No underwear to remove.
i shower quickly – when you’re being punished, you’re only allowed 5 minutes of warm water, and i don’t like cold showers. Rinsed clean, i dry quickly, rub lotion over my body as i’m required to do. i know that i won’t be wearing clothes again until the punishment is complete.
Putting on the simple collar and cuffs, a sob escapes me. So many times i’ve gotten ready for an event in some ritualistic way – showers and lotion and special clothing. Tonight is a sad travesty of those times.
i turn off the light before i place myself in the corner, only a night light glowing in the dark. i stand in the corner, the one farthest from the door, my face to the wall. i don’t know how long he’ll leave me here before he comes to check on me and give me my next directions. But i know what i’m supposed to be thinking about.
- What rule did you break?
- Why is that rule in place?
- What values or standards did you violate by breaking the rule?
- Did you confess or were you caught?
- Have you broken this rule before?
- What led you to break the rule?
- Are there extenuating circumstances?
- What will need to happen to keep you from breaking the rule again?
- How can you make amends and forgive yourself?
We memorized that in training, and recited it, practiced it, every time we broke a rule. Usually it was light-hearted – maybe a level 6 infraction, even a 4 or 5. But i’d never had to do it for a level 2.
Standing naked, alone in the dark, waiting to be told what will happen next, i want to cry. But i begin to work my way through the questions instead, practicing my responses. i don’t know how long i will be waiting. But when he comes, i’ll be ready with the answers.