The mistress’ hair was the shade of dried blood.
She strutted around the dungeon in a latex jumpsuit and shiny black boots. Her slave was on all fours chained inside a cage, wearing a blindfold, a posture collar, spandex shorts, a halter top, and fish net stockings.
“Bark,” Mistress ordered.
“Arf. Arf.” Slave obeyed.
“And tomorrow you will mow my lawn dressed in Saran Wrap.” Mistress strummed the cage as if it was a cello. “Then you will worship my feet for an hour.”
“Yes, goddess,” Slave said.
`Mistress yanked Slave from the enclosure, tied her to a medieval rack, and whipped her. Slave screamed.
Charles, who was standing next to me in the dungeon, backed against the wall.
“I hope she doesn’t make us clean the floor with our tongues.” I flashed a worried look. “I hear she likes to do that.”
“This is a joke. Right?” he asked.
I was deadpan. Toad-gone-wrong and I were dating again.
The break up—and my ensuing tears—had been short-lived. The words “I can’t see you anymore” on Monday had turned into “do you want to get together again?” by Tuesday. In other words, Charles had called it quits for a full twenty-four hours. Now we were standing in the oddest of places: an eerie dark chamber on the seedy side of town. We were surrounded by numerous sadistic devices: a bondage table, a spanking bench, a full suspension-type mechanism, wall shackles, a Saint Andrew’s cross, and what looked like a bed of nails.
The Chateau Club on Fulton Avenue in North Hollywood was the only licensed BDSM or “bondage and discipline” facility in the country, according to the business’ front desk clerk. Customers could pay $70 to rent out a room for an hour, and they could pay extra for one or two girls. Customers, who had a thirst for a sado-masochistic fantasy experience, came there to play games with a “dominant” or “submissive” theme. There was no sex or erotic touching allowed. It was against company policy.
Neither Charles nor I had ever been exposed to this subculture. As a real estate agent, I had clients ranging from FHA buyers to wealthy celebrities, but I had never represented an obvious sadist or masochist. Of course, there is the industry-wide joke that “sellers are yellers,” indicating property owners inflict pain and humiliation on their agents. But I don’t believe it ever included spanking or whips and chains. No homeowner, to my knowledge, has ever hauled her Realtor into the front yard and put her in the stockades. Pillory-lined streets would hurt resale value.
“Buyers are liars” is another frequently-uttered catch-phrase. It is true that many purchasers are wishy-washy and seem tortured by the buying process, but I have never met one who wanted to be shackled to the walls and whipped with a riding crop.
I had told Charles, “My real estate client calls herself ‘Mistress,’ and she’s super weird. I need to get her to sign escrow papers, and I’m afraid to meet with her alone.”
Charles had agreed to accompany me to the windowless warehouse, the Chateau Club, which Mistress called her “office.” The receptionist had led us to a back area called the “dungeon” where we’d found “my client.”
“I’ll be with you shortly,” Mistress hollered at us, while continuing to abuse her slave.
We waited patiently near the door. I held a folder of papers against my chest as if it was a bulletproof vest.
“I won’t make you lick the floor this time.” Mistress eventually pranced over to us. She was clearly bored with her human toy.
“I will sign the papers on one condition.” She zeroed in on me. “You have to let me tie up your guy and beat him for awhile.”