When my father died and I inherited his estate and life insurance policy, I used the assets very practically. Everything basically went into real estate or high interest savings, following the advice of those I trusted, mostly Mistress, who let me make the estate managing choices at the time; later, we married and fully merged our finances.
My mother (my parents had divorced) was a good adviser, too, and—perhaps especially watching me flounder a little in the wake of the grief and trauma of discovering my father’s death, the shock of becoming a landlord, and the stress of handling probate court proceedings pro se—had another piece of advice: that (without going too crazy) I should use some of the inheritance to treat myself to something that was previously out of reach.
There was something I’d been thinking about, too, and I did some research, and moved money to a separate savings account, naming it “Pipe Dream”.
There were a lot of other logistics, though, and the dream wasn’t attainable yet.
I needed time to attend, not still wrapped in estate managing; there was still major work to do on my health to be fit for that kind of travel (most of them were programs of multiple weeks or months abroad); I couldn’t yet drive. The pandemic struck.
I was also very aware that I wasn’t the typical demographic, as an American woman in my early twenties, and so much else. I would need a vanilla cover story, for starters.
Still, I dreamt and worked on what I could. I put out fires and cleared space in my life; I improved my health. In the meantime, I wrote prolifically, I published my first book, I planned to start teaching kink education classes, I grew as a slave, taking up new skills and duties.
In January 2021, days after my twenty-third birthday and first kink education class as the presenter, I learned that the International Institute of Modern Butlers was now offering an online private residence butler school course. It was a four hundred hour, one on one, self paced correspondence course, with all of the same material as a traditional butler school. This eliminated a lot of difficult logistics.
Elated—and with Mistress’ blessing—I signed up the very same day.
But that’s enough explanation: the question I promised the answer to is why.
Because out there in the vanilla world, there are resumes and qualifications and certifications and degrees and standards. I don’t preach these as The Answers; I didn’t even finish high school, and if anything, feel better off for it. But in the kink world, there aren’t really those Standard Items you look for on a resume. While there are big names, there’s not really a I Went To Harvard of kink. You make sense of each individual’s experience via once off classes or intensives they’ve attended, personalized training or mentoring they’ve received, skills and experience they can prove, awards and plaudits they’ve been given, community service they’ve done and involvement they’ve had, so on. And there are a lot of pros to that.
But it left me at a bit of a loss on how to feel like I’d thoroughly learned the basics of service. More than that, I noticed that a lot of “vanilla” standards and education seemed to be missing in the kink scene. It seemed like the second you were doing something in a kink environment, it was somehow different. It seemed that if you did, say, the cooking, as an act of submission to someone else, suddenly it was service, and almost not cooking. There were classes on service: how to negotiate it, service philosophy and archetypes, what is service, incorporating protocols, a few specialty items like tea service or bootblacking… but to learn even relatively basic kitchen skills, like safety standards—and certainly more advanced skills—I had to turn back to “vanilla” resources. And some people didn’t seem to understand that it was still kink/service relevant education, or why they might themselves pursue those “vanilla” cooking skills beyond the very basic, if their interest was in service.
So I made it a bit of a mission to blend the worlds. As I blended those culinary, housekeeping, secretarial, so on, skills into my own service, I started teaching classes, presenting those skills and standards I’d had to use “vanilla” resources to learn as service skills, framed them in a kink friendly environment, included how to add the service touch, tried not to neglect the soft skills and psychology involved. I integrated that into my kink related educational and fiction writing.
I wanted to give Mistress the best (that I was capable of), not average hard skills prettily dressed up as service, and I wanted to help others be able to offer the same. And if I wanted to offer something unique, in my service and in my writing and teaching, I had to go outside the kink scene’s preexisting norms.
The answer remained right in front of me: a vanilla role prided for general high end service.
The traditional butler.
So, butler school it was.
More than anything else, I want to prove that the worlds aren’t so different after all. I feel like by taking the course, I can prove that professional, vanilla private service standards can be mirrored by “just” a kinky slave, and I’m probably far from the seemingly most qualified person in that category to do it, just someone with some determination, a dream, and a bit of luck.
Really, it is a role at its core very similar to mine in a lot of ways. Other than terminology changes (Mistress becomes my employer) and minor details (like disguising my somewhat untraditional daily uniform), my only lies in my vanilla cover story are of omission. In a lot of ways, I think my life is actually pretty accurately portrayed in my assignments. I tell real day to day anecdotes, base evaluations on my real, daily actions, service tasks, and routines.
I try to get the most out of the course that I can that might be truly applicable—and there’s plenty that is.
I’m currently on Module 8 of 22, and plan to really pick up the pace in the new year. But I do still have a lot going on, health to consider, and the course material is a refreshing challenge, but a challenge nonetheless.