We started with dayo.
The three of us–sulenda, dayo, and I–arrived at Galleria Domain late in the evening. We started with dayo, with fingernails and knives and blindfolds and a very nasty little wooden paddle that’s about a foot long but only a quarter of an inch wide, and has a bite that belies its size. sulenda had brought an exquisitely lovely folding knife that made a most dlightful sound when it was unfolded, and each soft snick brought a delightful shudder from dayo.
And then, when she was a quivering happy mass, sulenda turned her attention to me.
Which is not, looking back on it now, something I was entirely prepared for.
Now, mind you, I know that she plays rough, and I know she likes inflicting pain. What I didn’t quite realize was the extent to which these things are true.
She also rather likes to win. Life lesson here: Victory goes not always to the strongest or the fastest, but rather to the person who’s willing to do whatever it takes to win. I’ve never played with anyone who plays quite as rough as she, and that made for quite an experience.
I’ve also never played before with anyone who is not a romantic partner or a potential romantic partner, and that too was an experience.
Now, all these things might sound like complaints, but they’re really not. Far from it. If I have any regret whatsoever, it’s that sulenda is leaving the country soon, and the odds are pretty good I may never see her again. That’s a pity; she’s thoroughly a delightful person, and I’ve vastly enjoyed being able to spend time with her. I also suspect I could potentially have a great deal to learn from her.
Like this thing she does with rope, for instance. At one point, she did this rather clever and tricksy thing where she tied a loop around the fingers of my right hand, put my right hand on my shoulder, ran the rope down my back, twisted my left arm up behind my back, ran the rope ’round my left wrist, then back up over my shoulder again and around my right elbow. The result: Just fine, if a bit awkward, as long as I didn’t move; instant punishment in the form of pain if I struggled.
Which, naturally, was the point, as the challenge was to escape.
And I did. After a great deal of struggling, accompanied by some rather colorful swearing and general thrashing around in pain. I apparently had an audience for that bit theater of pain, indeed. I’m told it was quite entertaining.
The strongest memory I have, though, is a vivid, almost visceral image of the look on her face while her nails (carefully filed to points, I might add) dug into my arm. “I’m a good person,” she said. Twist, dig, white-hot flash of pain. “Say it!”
And I did. And she is.
And I still have marks.
I neglected the next morning to ask her how to do that tricksy tie thing with the rope. It’s a skill I definitely wish to have.