Unleashing. First thing in the morning. Reaching over the edge of the bed for my phone and sending the message, Good morning, Mistress. May I get up, please? Heart emoji. Sleepily trying to get into position before she comes in. Moving a cat off my leg. Sitting up, cross legged on the bed, the leash binding me to it across both of my upturned palms, resting on my upper thighs. The carabiner and shackle rattling against the bedframe a little. I collect my hair back out of the way, tangled from sleep, and make sure the o-ring of my collar is in the front, the leash clip there accessible, the large clip heavy and easy to get to that lowest point. Try to keep my back straight and not nod off. She unclips the leash for me with more good mornings and kisses, leaving it loose in my hands. I ask for permission to shower. She says yes.
Inspection. After I’m done with that shower, I present myself for her inspection as required. I set the towel I had wrapped around myself nearby and shiver without it in the air conditioning. Legs apart, arms boxed behind back, head/eyes straight, back straight. I try to keep still, even my gaze, unless she moves me, straightening my arms out at my sides or such. She checks my work of shaving, and there’s no need for the tweezers today, as usual. But, the threat is there. I’m dismissed to dress in my uniform and go about my other morning tasks.
Waiting. Brunch, served at 9:30 daily. I check my table setting one more time and send Mistress the message, Brunch is ready, Mistress. Another heart emoji. Now, waiting behind my usual chair, legs together, hands at the small of my back (clasped, right over left, thumbs crossed, also right over left), back straight, head and eyes down. Make sure that pulling my shoulders back doesn’t put my elbows out at an angle. When she comes downstairs, I don’t so much as look up until she acknowledges me somehow. Today, as usual, it’s, “You may sit.” I’m not to ask permission for the furniture anymore; she grants it herself or doesn’t. We eat brunch.
Presenting. It’s maintenance day, once a week after brunch. So, after brunch is cleaned up, it’s time for maintenance discipline. I take the maintenance wand—a short, thick cane—from the mantel. Many things have changed about maintenance since the start of our dynamic, but that remains. I go upstairs, alert her that I’m ready, and go to the bedroom. Undress. Kneel by the foot of the bed, facing the door. Knees spread apart, big toes crossed behind me, the wand across my palms on my thighs like the leash. Head/eyes down. Back straight. She comes in and I offer the wand with both hands, head still down. She sits on the bed. We do maintenance.
Kneeling. The day continues. I go about my usual service tasks, do some writing. I find myself in Mistress’ office with us chatting. So, I kneel in front of her. I try to do it gracefully, balanced, both legs at once and not using my hands. My knees are apart again, big toes crossed in back again, hands clasped at the small of my back (right over left, thumbs crossed, also right over left), elbows not at an angle, back straight. When we’ve been talking for a while, I get permission to shift into whatever position’s comfortable. I try to get up in the same balanced manner, no hands.
Curtsy. When I’ve been given permission to leave (after the required asking if there’s anything else I can do to be of service, and then for the permission), I offer the required curtsy, the only “moving” position: from just standing, lower my head, hold my skirt out (gripping with thumbs and forefingers, pinkies extended), place the ball of my right foot behind my left heel, bend at the knees, and return to standing. Then, I go.
Waiting. Dinner is served at six as always. One more table check. Another message. Dinner is ready, Mistress. Heart. The same position as for brunch. A kiss and, “You may sit.” Dinner.
Leashing. After all other tasks, the last message. Would you leash me to the bed at your convenience, please, Mistress? Yes. Thank you, Mistress. The same position as in the morning. The click of the leash getting clipped to my collar. A sturdy setup: the steel bedframe and heavy shackle bolted through it, suspension worthy carabiner, rope leash, Mistress’ work on it in the whipping twine that reinforces it together, the steel clip on the leash and o-ring and shackle on my collar, the claspless circle of rope around my neck she made. I’ve slept with it since Summer 2019. It will certainly handle any tossing and turning as I doze off.