Masked Ball, the invitation said when it arrived by courier three days ago, remarkable in its stark, bone white envelope filled with pale rose petals, its silver embossed writing and heavy parchment smelling faintly of vanilla. It gave me a list of detailed instructions including how to do my hair, my makeup and the fact that my costume would be arriving soon.
It also gave me a date, a time and a location to be picked up from. But although it was addressed to Emma Frost there was no clue, no hint as to whom it was from. Only a small sigil in the corner, a white embossed crown, gave me any indication of who this was from. This intrigued me, after all nobody that I knew could possibly know that I was here, and none of my acquaintances here knew my real name.
Two days ago I received another white package, this one a large box. I had already decided to go to the ball, for how could I refuse such a mystery, such an opportunity for excitement and a chance to mingle with the class of people I belonged with. Within the box was my costume and mask, exactly my size. I wondered how my mystery admirer could have known my sizes.
It is the night of the ball. Looking at myself in the mirror I ask myself the same question again, looking at how perfectly the clothes fit. How could they have known my sizes so well? I spin slowly, admiring the view, although the brevity of the outfit has me slightly worried.
The boots are the first thing that people will notice, hard not to when they come up to the middle of my thigh. Skin tight, soft white leather that laces up the back with silver ribbon, they have taken me almost an hour to put on properly and lace up, and the 5-inch heels will probably take me another hour to get used to.
Coming almost down to the top of the boots, leaving an inch of pale bare skin, was the dress I have been provided with, a beautiful, floating white silk construction embroidered with silver Chinese dragons, intertwined with subtle crowns. The only fitted part is the bodice, which is corset style, and holds and displays my assets. It has the barest of straps to grace my shoulders and the neckline plunges almost to the top of my bra.
There is also a silk collar that fastens by four simple hooks at the back of my neck. It is snug, but not uncomfortable, and has the same intricate embroidery over it, and a delicate sickle-moon clip at the front. Wearing it makes me feel slightly nervous, as though somebody has claimed me, but it fits perfectly with my outfit, and I don’t feel it is right to question what my admirer wants.
My mystifying admirer, the one who has sent me the invitation, has even provided me with matching lingerie, and a white under-wired bra and silk thong nestle under the dress, swirling embroidery repeating endlessly over them.
To top of all of this is a pair of shoulder length white leather gloves, again, the dragons clawing over the seams, and the mask. It is a white half mask, with a silver dragon painted onto the right temple and a silver phoenix painted onto the left.
With minutes to spare I check my hair in its intricate updo, marvelling at the effect the pale blond has on the ensemble. I look like an ice queen. Hearing a honk outside I hurry out to meet the limousine that has been sent for me, glad that I don’t have to go far outside in this.
It takes half an hour for the limousine to get me to the ball, half an hour in which the driver never speaks to me once, and half an hour in which I have time to think of everything that could happen tonight. As the journey continues I am getting more and more nervous, not once sitting still, constantly checking my dress and hair.
We arrive, and the driver helps me out, motioning for me to put on my mask, which I have clutched in my hand, still not speaking a word to me. He is one of those people that are average in every way, shape and form, so average that I would be hard pressed to describe him. Average like a servant, a nobody.
Walking into the room, through the big double doors the first thing I notice is the smell of leather. It permeates the room, soaking into my very pores and making me light-headed. Almost simultaneously I notice that everybody else in the room is in black, that I am the only one in white.
The masks that surround me are demonic, gargoyles, mutilated figures with surprise and horror pained on like the false blood that adorns them. A few I take particular notice of, such as the one of a woman with her lips sewn shut, a cruel blank doll-like man and a smiling vampire. They are the highest quality masks that I can see, not to say that they aren’t all high quality.
Tearing my gaze away from the masks, I also see that the men and women are dressed identically in black leather tuxedos, the only way of telling the difference being what they are wearing under their jackets. The women are wearing black leather corsets, the men nothing at all, although some members of both sexes have collars on.
I find myself in the centre of a deep circle of these people, and once the circle is complete the music starts, deep and resonant, a surprising mutation of a classical waltz piece. As the other guests begin to dance I start to fell nervous, the fears I was dwelling on in the limousine coming back to me. They are closing in quickly and obviously know each other, while I know none of them. I am almost beginning to regret my decision to come here.
The music speeds up, and a sea of black surrounds me. People reach out to touch me, sliding hands over my shoulders, down my dress and up my legs. They pull me closer to them by my collar, which at once feels too tight. I move, try desperately to escape the reaching hands, try to protect myself, but they foil me at every turn, pulling me away and back again by the collar that I now deeply regret wearing. The hands are becoming more and more adventurous, brushing across tender areas and starting to pinch. I resist briefly against one such grasp, and find myself gripped from behind by an obviously aroused male body.
I push away from the inquisitive fingers that reach down the front of my dress, and I find my face buried in the chest of a heavy breasted woman. One of her hands goes to my collar, holding me still, while the other travels to my ass, and then between my legs. One long finger succeeds in working its way inside my thong, and probes deep into the surprising wetness it finds there, searching for a way inside me. Despite my slight arousal I begin to panic. I fight to remove the collar, but can’t reach around her hand.
As I struggle to find a way out of the circle of her arms, I get more and more scared and find myself wishing I could find my way out of this place. They stop suddenly, pulling back a few steps. The woman groping me pushes me away in her haste to withdraw and I find myself on my knees in the middle of a small, empty circle, chest heaving and in danger of falling out of my dress, my collar feeling as if it is about to strangle me, my hair dishevelled and my makeup undoubtedly smudged. Struggling to my feet ungracefully, nipples rock solid, dress ridding up uncomfortably high and revealing far more then I am happy about I look around to find the source of this sudden break.
Suddenly, out of the corner of my eye I see a flash of white, the only other colour in this place and I feel eyes on me, watching me. I spin around, trying to find the source of the white gleam. It flashes several times more before I can finally see who is stalking me.
She moves through the sea of bodies as if they aren’t even there and something in me begins to pulse at the sight of her, the raw power she exudes. As she moves her blonde hair swings around her, loose, long and magnificently glossy. She is hidden beneath a cloak of white velvet, but as she stops only inches away from me it drops to reveal her full glory. If I thought myself to be an ice queen, then she must be a goddess.
The skirt she wears, full-length white silk embroidered with silver tigers, is close fitting and yet allows her full freedom of movement, while obscuring her legs. All that I can see of her shoes is the pointed metal heels, and a slight outline that can’t be hidden. My eyes follow up her miles of legs to an elegant white leather corset that holds her much as my dress holds me. Her skirt is belted at the waist with a light, braided silk belt, fastened with a delicate silver clasp.
I realize, from being hauled around by my collar, that the belt is sure to be deceptively strong, and I fear for a moment that the full-moon clasp on it will be attached to my collar to become a leash. Thankfully, she makes no motion to do anything of the sort, and instead stands for a few moments and lets me regard her.
Her mask is Japanese in style but Celtic in its decoration, with tiny, intricate lines of silver knot work gracing its cheeks and lining its eyes, almost like wings.
She offers her hand to me and I take it, feeling uncomfortably safe with her nearby. I look into her mask and feel myself begin to drown in the bluest eyes that I have ever seen. We begin to dance and one thought fills my mind. I want her. I can’t explain it but I want her. Her power, her very proximity, makes me wet.
We continue to dance and I see that we are slowly moving through the main crowd towards a small door that I haven’t noticed before. I sense what is possibly to come, hopefully to come, and I follow her steps exactly, urging her through our eye contact to speed up.
And speed up we do, reaching the door in record time. As we move inside I find it to be a bedroom, tastefully decorated in whites and silvers, with a classical four-poster bed as its central feature. She hauls me along until I am standing in the centre of the room, and then pulls away to observe me.
“I’ve been waiting to see you like this since the first day I saw you,” when she speaks her voice is deep and husky, but ever so melodic. The slight upper class British accent and maddening authority in it make me weak at the knees, and wetter than I have ever been before. I find myself again wondering whether a goddess had kidnapped me.
“You are a truly beautiful woman,” she continues, the heated and lustful look in her eyes makes me blush beneath my mask. I watch her every movement and look on as she reaches behind her and draws a stiletto from a previously hidden sheath. The blade is shining silver, and close to six inches long but still I’m not afraid.
“Stand still,” she orders and I obey, realising that this is how she plans to get over the problem of the lacing on my boots. I feel her slide the knife up the back of them, and continue up over my dress, the knife brushing my skin seconds before air does. The blade is frighteningly sharp, and I know that if she were to use it on me, it would do amazing amounts of damage. She moves her hands up over my shoulders as I step out of the now loose boots. The dress falls to the ground with them, and leaves me stood almost naked in front of her. She makes no move to remove the collar, but instead looks at it before she comes in close to me again.
“I just couldn’t wait,” she whispers into my ear, before starting to kiss down my neck and along my shoulders. Her arms make trails along my stomach. She presses herself to me, the feel of her skin against mine making me burn inside, and I find the desire to pin her to the wall behind me very hard to resist. But resist it I do, the image of the stiletto hovering in the back of my mind.
“I want you,” I whisper back, my voice filled with need as a hundred tiny shocks spread from where she is touching me. “I want to see you,” I add, hoping that she hadn’t meant to keep the masks on. Although the thought of keeping the masks on arouses me, possibly more than it should, I desperately want to see her.
Laughing, she spins me around and removes her mask, kissing me before I have a chance to get a good look at her. As I finally get to look at her my breath is taken away. She is everything that I imagined and more, beautiful, powerful, elegant.
She leads me over to the bed, and sits me down, removing my mask for me, and starts on her own clothing. She carefully drops the belt somewhere she’ll be able to find it. I don’t bother to say anything, but bat her hands away and move to undress her myself. The look in her eyes says that she is only tolerating me being this wilful because of our combined desperation. I have the feeling that normally she would be in total control, and that no un-requested actions would be permitted. She is definitely used to being in control. I feel I am lucky not to receive a slap for my enthusiasm, and again, the thought of the stiletto invades my mind.
Every time I touch her, every time I brush my hands over her smooth, creamy skin she shivers, and I realise that she wants this as much as me. Slowly, carefully I peel the layers of clothing off of her, leaving her in nothing but white boots and the palest white lingerie, the rest of her clothing ending up in a pile on the floor, discarded and forgotten. She is breathing as heavily as I am, and I can see her nipples becoming harder even in the dimly lit room.
I have just begun to remove her strapless bra when she puts her hands out and pushes me away, causing me to fall onto the bed. “That’s enough for now,” and the tone in her voice is one to be obeyed. It makes me shiver and yet another wave of arousal sweeps over me. She motions for me to lie on the bed properly and I do so, intrigued and hopeful of what was to come.
Once I have settled she continues to strip, moving with such grace I swear she must be a trained dancer, for nobody else could move their body like that. As the last few inches of pale flesh are revealed I see that she is as aroused as me, and revel in the fact that I have that small control over her. She moves once again, climbs onto the bed and crawls along it to reach me, looking ever so much like a hunting cat advancing on its helpless prey.
All this time not a word has been spoken, and so it continues, the silence surprisingly comfortable between us. As she reaches up my legs she once again brings out the blade and begins to trail it over them lightly, never once drawing blood and leaving a pleasant, tingling trail on me. The metal is cold, and she deliberately brushes some of my more sensitive places, making me moan and try to avoid wriggling too much. She removes my underwear much as she had removed my other clothing, and at last we are skin on skin. I am tempted to mention the collar to her, but an instinct tells me she has left it on for a reason.
She runs her hands along my body, hands that are delicately boned and gracefully long, the nails practically short but beautifully manicured. Her caresses are causing me to shiver in much the same way as she had when I touched her. Her touch is teasing despite the desperation of our situation, and it elicits small mewling noises from me, begging her to fulfil the hot promise in her eyes.
Laughing, a sound so much like music I could have listened to it for hours, she massages my breasts, causing my breath to hitch in my throat, and leaves me gasping at the intense sensation. No longer laughing, but still grinning she lets one hand fall down and between my legs, fingers finding my wetness. As she flicks her fingers over my opening, and occasionally over my clit I arch my back towards her, begging for more, pleading with my eyes. “Beg me,” she whispers and I do, voice cracking and hitching as she gives me bit by bit what I beg for.
No longer slow, she plunges a finger into me and begins to move it, massaging my insides and causing a monumental build up of sensation. A second finger soon joins the first and she flexes and swirls within me, finding the best spot within seconds of starting. Each time she hits it I feel waves of painful pleasure surge within me, building up to an inevitable tidal wave.
With her free hand she massages my clit, and soon the combination of both stimuli send me over the edge into shuddering orgasm, a scream rips from my throat by the sheer power of it, blinding flashes of light erupting in my head as the collar bites into my neck, and the sensations cloud my mind to all thought.
I lay there, the aftershocks occasionally cause me to shudder again, and watch her as she watches me, fascinated by what she has done to me. As I start to come back to myself I notice that she is breathing heavily and guess that my reaction to her have succeeded in pushing her close to her own edge. Reaching up to her I pull her close and kiss her hungrily, my hand searching her body for the trigger to her orgasm.
My fingers rub down her stomach, across silk smooth skin, and quickly come to a spot that makes her shudder into the kiss. I slip my finger into her and begin to explore, marvelling at the warmth and texture of her insides. She comes almost immediately, having been pushed that close to the edge by everything that went before, and lies on top of me panting and shaking, as her arms no longer act to support her weight.
We lay like this for a while, her body acts as a blanket and keeps me warm despite the slight chill of the room and my lack of clothing. The collar is still too tight, but I am getting used to it again and it is no longer impeding my breathing. As we recover from the aftershocks of pleasure, all of the exertions and feelings of the night, the incredible orgasm, the panic and fear of earlier, catches up with me and I find myself dropping off into sleep.
When I wake up it is with a start, and I find myself back in my room, back in bed as if nothing had happened. I think for a moment that it had all been a dream, after all it had seemed so fantastical, so unbelievable. But as I look around and reacquaint myself with my surroundings I notice undeniable proof that it has been real.
There, hanging on the door to my wardrobe is the dress, the mask and the collar, which is now attached to the lead, a hint at what could have been. Pinned to the dress is a piece of white paper, the same colour as all of the packages and letters have been. Feeling a sense of expectation and at the same time fear I get out of bed and recover the note. It had only three words on it, Until Next Time, and the mark of a three pronged trident.
I look at the collar and lead again, and shiver, hugging the message to me. Getting back into bed, I pull the covers over my head and close my eyes. The next time was something I will be looking forward to with excitement, and a lingering sense of foreboding. “Until next time,” I whisper to myself, “Then I will be on top.”