Beth makes her round through the now slowly dispersing crowd, telling everyone who has had any special requests when and where they can set up shop. When I see her angling towards us, I press a quick kiss onto Bella's cheek and nudge her towards the exit.

"I need to talk to Beth, wait for me outside. And don't get into any trouble."

Bella nods and walks into the other room, her ass swaying way too suggestively for my own good. Beth looks after her for a moment before she turns to me.

"I scheduled you for after Patty and Angelo are done, is that okay with you?

He promised it wouldn't take him more than forty-five minutes tops. I hope you can take that long?"

"Actually that's perfect," I reply, although I feel my cock and blue balls protesting loudly. Beth raises a knowing eyebrow and I grin at her until she shrugs.

"Guess something always sticks, eh?"

I briefly incline my head, then catch her gaze once more.

"Actually, do you have time to lend me a hand? Only if you can spare a few minutes of course."

She's considering my offer, then shrugs.

"We'll see. I saw you ask around earlier, so I guess you won't miss me if I can't make it?"

"I always miss you," I assure her, and it's not entirely a joke. Beth answers my smile with a rueful one of her own, then nods her head towards the front room. "Had to cut you free, smart-ass, you were getting too bossy for your own good. Now go look after your girl before she sneaks off somewhere and decides that calling the worst down on herself for taking things into her own hands is a definitely worth it. And keep your hands to yourself, I'm watching you, Edward."

I nod, making her laugh at my fake attempt at demureness, then heed her words and track Bella down. I find her near the drinks, sipping on a cup of water with a second one in her other hand. When she sees me she smiles at me and starts making her way over to me, but before she gets there Raven is suddenly right in front of me.

At the door I've done a good job not actually looking at her, but here with the better lighting I cannot not glance at her outfit. Tall and willowy, the short, black dress she's wearing is accentuating her figure nicely, emphasizing her ass and long legs. I'm surprised she actually dared to shed her usual gothy attire except for the dramatic makeup and hairdo, and for just a moment I contemplate whether she really wants to give things a try. But then she opens her mouth and what she says annoys me too much to give a shit anymore.

"Mas-, ah, Edward, I was actually looking for you. I was hoping that you'd maybe have a little time for me?"

I regard her levelly, hoping that my unfriendly look conveys my answer before I have to open my mouth, but she is clearly immune to the hint.

"Raven, which part of me being here with my sub did you not get?"

She shrugs, then her eyes flicker to where Bella appears at my elbow, her face well composed but her eyes livid. I take the offered cup from her with a thankful smile, then turn back to Raven.

"Why don't you go look for someone else? I'm sure there are a lot of people here who are looking into hooking up with someone, or ask Beth if she knows if anyone's interested in playing with a novice."

My rebuke seems to be too subtle as she's still sticking around.

"I'm not a novice," she smiles, then actually has the gall to look down her nose at Bella. "If you're looking to do something more challenging, I'm certainly up for it."

I seriously doubt that, but before I can answer, Bella interrupts me.

"We'll get back to you should the need ever arise, thank you for your offer."

Unlike anything I've ever said Bella's words cut right through Raven's simpering, and she narrows her eyes at the smaller woman at my side.

"Who asked you for your opinion?"

"I figured you were as you were so blatantly trying to whore yourself out to my man?"

While her tone is still light I don't miss the steel lacing Bella's voice, and for a moment the mental image of both of them wrestling - oddly enough inside a kiddie pool filled with pudding - comes up in my mind. I have no doubt who would win, though.

Raven looks from her to me, then back to Bella, clearly at a loss for words.

"And there I thought you were at least pretending to be submissive. Guess there's not much more to it than your slutty getup."

Bella is about to lose it, but then calms down all of a sudden, her level stare remaining on Raven.

"I'm not here to impress you. It was nice talking to you."

Her dismissal is more final than anything I could have offered, judging from the way Raven glares at first Bella, then me, before she turns around and stalks off. I don't know whether to shake my head in wonder or laugh, but when I look back to Bella I barely catch the hurt look in her eyes before she averts them, her face resuming a rather unfamiliar mask of meekness. I'm a little at a loss for what to say, unaccustomed of having anyone squabble over me, but Bella quickly tides over the stretching moment of silence.

"Shall I fetch you something to eat, Master?"

Suddenly the appellation grates along my spine but I don't know how to respond so I just nod, actually glad she scurries off. Thankfully Raven doesn't use the chance to track back, and I have a merciful two minutes to myself to come up with something to say before Bella returns.

The way she's squaring her shoulders when she hands me a tuna sandwich on a napkin I can tell she's still upset, but I have no idea if it's about Raven alone, or my apparent inability to make that woman see reason. The last thing I want for today is to emotionally upset Bella so I choose to wait until she speaks up. Even though she appears to be in the mood to be less outspoken than usual, I know she will eventually tell me if it really bothers her.

Five minutes later she does.

"Sorry I'm bumbling through this so much, but can we, I don't know, take a quick time-out so you don't have to flay me alive for what I really need to say right now?"

I nod, then gently take her arm and nudge her along until we're no longer in the midst of the people idling around to lend us a minimum of privacy.

"Sure. And if you don't want to play after that I understand -"

"Hell, no! I'm so not gonna let that skinny bitch ruin this for me today! For us, I mean."

Bella actually grins sheepishly up at me, and I have to staunch the relieved sigh that wants to wrench itself from my lungs.

"So, speak up then so we can move on with this, okay?"

She inclines her head, then exhales forcefully.

"Why can't you just tell her no, you won't play with her?"

"I've tried before, but she seems to be immune to me -"

"No, Edward, she's immune to half-assed comments that leave enough room for interpretation. Just say no. Tell her you already have all the tits and cunt you could ask for and leave it at that."She makes it seem so easy, and I have to admit, it probably is."Okay, yes, you're right, I should have said that from the start. And I will if she tries again. Promise."I want to add that I hope she's not mad at me now but Bella doesn't seem to be in the mood to let this conversation go on, because when she turns to me she does that delectable lip biting thing that she knows is driving me wild."But, you know, maybe she did have a point, although I'm sure she didn't mean it.""Come again?"Her eyes narrow at me as she studies my face."Do me a favor, please?""Everything you want.""Whatever you've planned for today - double it."I raise my brows at that, and Bella shrugs."I just don't want to feel like you're treating me with kid gloves. I'm a big girl, I can take it, as long as it's not too much more than stuff we've done before.""Trust me, I didn't plan to go easy on you in the first place.""Then don't. Please. Okay?"I wonder for a moment if she's really serious, then inwardly smack myself for hesitating. Who in their right mind would pass up a chance like that? If she wants to serve herself on a platter, I'm more than happy to oblige her.Some of the devious glee rising up in me must have shown on my face because Bella pales a little, but her smile is sincere when she leans closer and brushes her lips again mine."So we have a deal?""We do." I let her kiss me for a moment, then wrap her long hair around my hand and wrench her head backwards away from me while I smirk down at her. The way her pupils dilate and her breath catches noisily in her throat I can tell that she's getting all hot and bothered again, just the way I need her to be."Now lets get back inside, shall we? I might need to get a little inspired if you really want me to go all mean on your cute ass."Ignoring that last straw to weasel out of the trap she laid out herself, Bella smiles up at me, then nods even though the motion must be pulling hard on her roots."I'd love to, Master."And off we go back into the playroom, my cock already hard all over again, while Bella looks positively radiant with excitement. Can't wait to test one of my theories why I think she has been so ready to agree to coming her in the first place, very soon.Chapter 16Nothing like the scent of leather, sweat, and lube to get me hard, add a sprinkle of the sounds of flesh meeting flesh and a few high pitched moans and I'm in heaven. The only thing better than that is actually being the one to cause all those sensory assaults, on my lovely Bella no less.And in a few minutes I'll finally get the chance.Mingling with the crowd that makes up the audience for the first few scenes of the party taking place is fun, though, more so than I remember as watching Bella react to what's going on is fast becoming my new favorite pastime. Being a woman, and naturally polite, she's not one to openly react too obviously to anything even if it's a huge turn-on for her, but I know her well enough to read the signs. And the way she keeps rubbing her thighs together and her rock hard nipples straining against the sheer fabric of her top are a dead giveaway, too.I'm more than happy that she's obviously responding well to the scene taking place on the center stage where she'll soon be finding herself. I have to admit, the way Angelo has his sub Patty tied to the St. Andrew's Cross is most appealing, leaving her arms and legs spread wide, her ass rubbing against the wood whenever he hits her with the single tail. I know Bella is still a bit apprehensive about whips in general, which is probably my own fault, but I feel like her unease is slowly ebbing away. At least if the way she's licking her lips whenever Patty moans loudly is any indication.There is one other couple and a group of a Domme with her two subs, one of them clearly still in training and mostly kneeling at the side, eagerly waiting to be included, who have set up their scenes at the other side of the room, leaving enough space for everyone to move between the scene spaces without actually intruding. As usual the crowd is as diverse as it gets, both in gender, degree of dedication to portray their kinks, and what they intend to actually participate in today. I know Beth has set up Patty and Angelo as the first to occupy the larger space because their scene pretty much sets a good baseline example - some nice, not too heavy whipping that will, if I still know them well enough, end with him making her come on his hand but no intercourse.Their scene will hopefully inspire everyone to actually have fun without feeling like they have to outdo each other, or like they have to fuck like porn stars on E. I know that most people don't have sex on a play party, at least not to the extent they do in their own playrooms. I still intend to be the exception, as usual, as fucking my partner, or being fucked by them, is simply part of the game. Nothing wrong with that, but not everyone sees it this way.A few minutes later their scene ends just as I have guessed, and after Angelo is done with some preliminary aftercare the usual friendly banter and comments ensue. Bella seems a little intimidated by that but I quickly assure her that no one is going to judge what's going on, but like with any passionate hobby people just love to gossip. Once the crowd slowly disperses to give the now happy and spent couple some reprieve and privacy I leave Bella waiting to the side while I help Angelo clean up and together we heave the spanking bench up onto the dais. Bella watches us curiously while she's talking to Patty, who has wrapped herself in a blanket to keep from freezing. Whatever she says to Bella makes her blush furiously but also crack up with laughter, and Angelo wishes me lots of fun before he joins his sub to in turn watch us play.A small audience is quickly re-forming while I rub down the bench with disinfectant and bring my bag over to the side of the stage. Slipping off my shoes and socks I quickly get rid of my shirt, instantly feeling a little more like I belong here in my usual 'work clothes' - my leather pants. I can tell that Bella is a little uncomfortable being left standing alone up there but she doesn't seem too worried. She's definitely still excited when I'm finally done and beckon her to come to me, turning her around so that her back is to the room and she has only me to focus on."You know your safewords?"She nods, and at my raised eyebrow adds a quick "Yes, Master.""You won't hesitate to use them if you need them?""No, Master.""Good. Now let's get started, shall we?"I still take the time for a last long kiss before I bend down to fetch the padded leather cuffs, a move that I know will irk some of the people present in the audience - but quite frankly, my scene, my right to kiss my sub as long and as much as I want to. I understand why some people feel the need to exclude any kind of romantic feelings from their scenes, or from their BDSM life entirely, but as we're a couple in all aspects, I'm not afraid to show it.I send Bella scurrying towards the bench with a quick slap on her ass, and she climbs onto the thickly padded piece of furniture. It's basically like a saw horse with a wide top part about 12 x 20 inches of size with two lower, smaller platforms for the sub to put their knees on, leaving their ass high and very available. Her skirt rides up and leaves her ass cheeks fully exposed once she is kneeling on the bench, and I set to buckling the cuffs around her wrists. There are several places I could secure her arms to but I decide to leave her kneeling there with her lower arms supporting her upper body instead of making her lie down fully. A short length of rope and the cuffs are attached to the front of the bench, leaving me with my victim waiting for me a little more helpless than before.Her eyes are wide and she's trembling slightly, I'm sure because she knows everyone is watching her. I trust her that she will back out of this if she can't take it anymore so I try to disregard the natural urge to make sure again. I know myself that nothing is more pesky for a nervous sub than an overtly protective Dom, so I walk up to her hindquarters and let my hand roam boldly over her ass, pushing the skirt up all the way before I undo the tie and remove it completely. Her ass flares nicely below where the corset is cinching her waist, and if I hadn't decided before, the sight is enough to make me swear to only fuck her from behind when she's wearing a corset from now on.The two light swats I direct at her ass turn her occasional shudder more violent but at the same time she seems to calm down as her mind lets her slip deeper into her role. I don't even have to look, I know she's dripping wet by the faint scent hanging in the air, but I still slide two fingers downwards and between her swollen labia. She groans softly when I brush her clit, while the six hard slaps that follow make her arch her back for a moment.I step away from her again and briefly cast a glance into the audience, then dismiss them entirely. To me it's the same if I'm here alone or with twenty people watching, years of scening with an audience have dulled my sensibilities, and I guess I didn't care that much to start with. Bella needs my attention right then, and I can see how much being watched still affects her. Normally she would have relaxed by now but it seems that won't happen here today.Probably because she keeps glancing back at them, even though I've positioned her in a way that she has to crane her neck to see most of the onlookers."Eyes straight forward, I haven't allowed you to look around," I command, and my words make her jump. For a moment I wonder if this is really a bad idea and I should stop now, but then she calms and keeps her head slightly lowered and unmoving, so I decide to go on. Maybe I just need to distract her more.Rubbing her barely reddening skin I admire her ass for a while, letting my caress comfort her, before I reach towards my bag again. I select the light riding crop I've brought, then trail the small paddle at the end of it over her thigh before I tap it a little harder against her pussy. That never fails to do the trick, and after about a minute or so the first moan leaves her, making me grin, which she if course can't see as she's still keeping her eyes forward only.I change my tactics a little then, using the length of the toy to crop her ass, painting light, red lines all over her butt and thighs. They fade before I can hit her again and don't really hurt her, but the steady rhythm should help her along. That, and I simply love swatting away at her behind without having to care much about the consequences.A few minutes later I tire of this, and when I stop and don't move I see Bella tense up - and we're back to where we've started off. I've had nervous subs before but I didn't care so much about what I put them through as I do with Bella now - simply because I want this to be as much fun for her as it is for me.I switch tactics and instead of distracting her with light pain I go for more intense pleasure. She gasps when I slip two fingers into her pussy, and I'm surprised just how tight she is, her body about ready to seize up - and not in the way I want her to. A little finger fucking and rubbing her clit later she's still all wound up, but by now her thighs are sticky with her own juices, and I don't think she would appreciate me offering her to stop. So I decide to step it up a little more.Rummaging around in my bag I find a thin rope - actually a piece of climbing rope - and use it to gather Bella's hair into a messy ponytail, tying it securely enough to make sure it can't slip. Leaving the rope there for now, I reach into the bag again and get out something Bella hasn't seen nor experience yet - a stainless steel anal hook. The curved, smooth metal is barely thicker than my little finger, and the rope attachment ring at the non-business end is exactly what I need now.I thoroughly lube up the hook and without further ado start pushing the sleek, edge-less toy into her. Bella squeaks when she feels the cold hard something intrude and goes completely still, giving me ample opportunity to tug her head back by the rope which I tie securely to the hook. This way she has to keep her head held high but unmoving to keep the pressure of the unyielding metal in her rectum to a minimum, her back now curved downwards to minimize the distance between her ass and head.