Actions

Work Header

Come Crawling to Me

Chapter Text

Myka looked up from her desk when she heard the classroom door open, about ten minutes into her science mid-term. She adjusted her glasses and quickly looked back down when Helena Wells moved into the room. Not that she had anything against Helena... Helena just didn't seem to like her. Probably because she never had to study and she aced all of her tests, no matter which subject. It wasn't her fault that school came easy for her. She'd rather be in Helena's shoes any day... the brunette had no problem making friends, and that was something Myka had always struggled with.

Helena saw Myka look at her, and almost wriggled her eyebrows, but she didn't have time. She smoothed down her skirts as she sauntered to the front of the class and handed the teacher her excused late slip. She stopped next to her desk, her black velvet jacket slipped off and draped over the back of her chair before she sat. She could tell Myka was unnerved by her proximity, but the only empty desk was beside the cute brunette. When the teacher turned away to file her note, she leaned over toward Myka. "Can I cheat off you?" she hissed in a whisper.

Myka blushed, her eyes going wide as she looked at Helena long enough to notice how thick her eyeliner was and the way it curled slightly at the edges of her eyes, making her look a little like an Egyptian goddess. "No," she managed to hiss back before her looking could turn into staring.

Helena poked the tip of her tongue out through red painted lips and studied Myka's paper until the brunette girl deliberately put her arm in the way. "Aw come on, Myka," she said with a quiet laugh. She really didn't care if she failed the test, she just liked to push Myka's buttons. It was so fun to watch her get that sweet little flushed expression...

"No!" Myka hissed again, getting tired of Helena's pushing, despite the fact that the other girl's voice was a little captivating - but that was only because of her lilting English accent. "Shut up and let me finish my test!"

"Well you don't have to get bitchy," Helena replied, pouting those glossy lips. "If I were smarter than you, I'd let you cheat off me."

"Oh please," Myka snapped. "You could be smarter than anyone here if you tried."

That threw the pouting girl for a loop, enough to make her back off and stare down at her own test. What the hell was that supposed to mean?

Myka was grateful for the reprieve, and she finished her mid-term without further interruptions from Lolita.

However, Helena caught up to her in the hallway between classes and fell in to step beside her. "What did you mean by that exactly?"

Myka sighed, not really wanting to elaborate. She already felt awkward enough for having said it in the first place. "I just meant that if you studied, you wouldn't need to cheat off of me. You're certainly not stupid."

"There's this thing called having a social life. You should try it sometime. There's more to life than studying, Myka."

"I rarely study, thank you," Myka said, waving a hand at the other girl dismissively.

"Oh please!" Helena laughed. "I see you walking home from the library every time I'm working in my mum's shop."

"You don't know where I walk home from," Myka argued, hugging her books tighter to her chest as they walked.

"Oh, so you're not at the library every day? You're at the bar? Or is it the strip club? Or maybe--"

Myka interrupted her, blushing hotly. "It's the library," she rushed. "But I'm not studying, I do my homework there."

Helena scoffed and rolled her eyes. "Same thing!"

"Look, no offense, but... why are you talking to me?" Myka finally asked, starting to get a little too relaxed in the other girl's presence and not wanting to let her guard down.

Helena didn't miss a beat, though she did take minor offense at the question. "The president of my fan club is sick today so I have to find my own peons." She paused for a moment, then added sarcastically, "no offense."

"Well then you might want to stick to recruiting people that can't outscore you on every test."

"Ouch."

"What did you expect? You just indirectly called me a peon," Myka pointed out.

"Yes, that was a joke," Helena drolled, rolling her eyes. "Your statement, however, was not designed to be facetious."

"Is that a dictionary in your pocket or are you smarter than you pretend to be?" Myka asked, grinning at the other girl.

"Are you flirting with me, Miss Valedictorian?" Helena asked, raising one eyebrow.

Myka wanted to blush and hide her face, but she forced herself to smirk and say, "you wish."

"My boyfriend would kick your ass," Helena lied, to cover up the fact that she did indeed wish. Half the school wished Myka Bering would flirt with them... and Myka had no idea.

"I didn't realize you had a boyfriend," Myka said, feeling a little put-out at the revelation, and a little annoyed at herself for feeling that way, since she didn't even like Helena as a classmate, let alone as anything more.

"I don't," Helena admitted with a sassy smile to keep up her 'I don't care what you think of me' facade. "By the way, I'm coming to the library with you after school today."

Panic. "Assigned community service for all the times you cut class?" Myka snarked.

"How could you insinuate that I've ever been caught at that?" Helena pretended to be insulted.

"I'm not going to the library today." Now it was Myka's turn to lie.

"Liar!" Helena said with a laugh. Wow. This was the longest she'd ever talked to Myka without the brunette walking off in a huff.

"You forgot your jacket in class," Myka pointed out, relieved to have found a reason to change the subject. This conversation was not exactly in her comfort zone.

"Damn. Okay, you win... for now. See you at the library," Helena grinned, and spun around to go retrieve her jacket.

Myka made a face, but for some reason it felt different this time, and she wasn't dreading it as much as she should have been.

--

Despite the fact that she wasn't completely hating the thought of Helena joining her at the library, Myka still didn't wait around for her after school. In fact, she was already a few problems into her calculus homework before Helena caught up to her and slid into the chair across from her.

"Trying to ditch me?"

"Just trying to do my work," Myka said without looking up.

"Why don't you do your homework at home?" Helena asked curiously, laying her cheek on the table.

"Too many distractions." Or not enough. Her parents were never home and her house was too big and stark and lonely.

"A lot of brothers and sisters?"

"Yeah," Myka lied, not exactly sure why she was lying. She only had one brother and one sister.

"Not me. Just me and my mum," Helena said, sitting back up and stretching with a yawn. "So..."

Myka finally put her pencil down with a little noise of defeat and looked up. "You're not going to let me concentrate, are you?"

Helena smiled under the icy gaze. "I'm just being friendly. I like you."

Myka's eyes widened and she blinked, resigned to not being able to do homework for the afternoon. "Why in the hell do you like me?"

"Jesus, you sound like you're a criminal with no redeeming qualities," Helena laughed, amused by Myka's reaction.

"You know what I mean. We're completely antagonistic to each other every chance we get."

"This conversation is so boring I'm about to start drooling in my sleep," Helena complained, standing up and flipping Myka's textbook closed. "Come on. I'll walk you home."

Myka sighed, but honestly she wasn't all that put out. It was kind of nice to have someone seeking her attention in such a manner. It rarely, if ever, happened. So she shoved her books and pencils and notebook into her bag and stood up, matching Helena's pace out of the library.

"I have to stop here and make sure everything's cool," the raven-haired girl announced as they reached her mother's shop, and she took Myka's hand, dragging her inside. "Put your bag behind the counter; I'll give you a quick tour."

"What?" Myka asked, looking around suspiciously, narrowing her eyes at several of the implements hanging from the walls. But she left her bag with the counter girl, who smiled at her and gave her a claim ticket, which she pushed hastily into her pocket and followed her bubbly classmate.

Helena thought it would be fun to unnerve Myka a little, so with a cheeky grin, she stopped in front of a row of floggers and turned to the brunette. "These... are floggers," she said, picking one from its hook. "And they're used for--"

"I know how to use one, thank you," Myka said, unamused, one eyebrow lifted.

"Oh, you do?" Helena asked, grinning wickedly and thrusting the flogger toward Myka. "Use that."

Eyebrow remaining firmly raised, Myka took the flogger and stood waiting for Helena to turn around. "Well? Am I using it on your face, or are you going to turn around?" she finally asked with slight irritation. Patience was never her strong suit.

Helena smirked and spun around, moving her hair out of the way, dropping her head slightly forward and bracing her hands on the grid rack now in front of her.

Myka swung the flogger through the air a few times to get a feel for its weight and balance, then proceeded to beat the smirking girl with practiced ease, pulling her blows so they wouldn't hurt, but making it quite evident that she had the rhythm and the precision tucked neatly into her repertoire of skills.

Helena gasped softly, her fingers tightening around the cool metal rods, and when Myka had stopped, she turned around, surprise written all over her face, right down to her wide, dark eyes.

Myka was the one smirking now, and she handed the flogger back to Helena, gathered her bag from the friendly counter girl, and left.

Helena hurried out to the front, her face flushed as she addressed her mother's employee. "Lark!" she said in an urgent whisper. "Undo my dress and tell me if there's marks."

"Undo your dress? Do you want your mother to kill me? Or worse, fire me?" Lark teased, finding Helena's excitement adorable.

Glossy red lips moved into a pout, and Helena turned around. "Please? I can't reach it myself..."

Lark gave a long-suffering sigh and unbuttoned Helena's fancy dress to the waist. "I don't see any."

Helena's pout grew, and she rested her elbows on the counter, dropping her chin into her hands. "None at all?"

"Sorry kiddo. You're a little flushed, but no marks." She did up Helena's dress again, then had to go help a customer.

--

For once in her life, Helena was early to class. Science class, to be exact, which she shared with Myka. She slid into the desk beside the brunette girl's and leaned over, as close as she could without toppling out of her chair. "Where did you learn to do that?" she whispered.

"To read? I believe I learned that in my preschool classroom, why do you ask?" Myka answered, deliberately misunderstanding.

"No, to-- you learned to read in preschool?" Helena asked, her jaw dropping. "Weren't you like... four years old?"

"Three," Myka replied, without looking up from her textbook.

"Jesus," Helena muttered, shaking her head. "But you know what I meant."

"I do know what you meant," Myka agreed, still not looking up.

"Don't make me ask louder, in front of the whole class," Helena said, her voice rising slightly in pitch.

Myka slammed her book shut and finally picked up her head to look at Helena. "Nowhere you need to know about," she whispered. Their faces were quite close, what with how far Helena was leaning over in her chair.

"You didn't leave any marks," the raven-haired girl whispered secretively.

"I didn't mean to," Myka said with a shrug. "You sound disappointed."

"I am disappointed," Helena said, still whispering.

"If you wanted marks, you should have opened your dress. And you should have told me. I'm not just going to mark someone on a whim. That would be a compromise of ethics."

Helena had to sit back, because class started, but her neurons were firing rapidly, and she would corner Myka in the library again after school.

--

Myka pretended to be annoyed when a shadow fell over her homework. "What?"

Helena leaned over the table until she caught Myka's eyes. "Come with me again," she said, grinning. "Will you give me marks this time? I know you can."

"What I can do and what I will do are not always the same," Myka said, her brows furrowed. "I don't know that you can handle it."

Helena hated being told she couldn't do something. Or have something. She scrunched up her nose in distaste as she answered, "I didn't know you could handle a whip, and look how that turned out."

"You won't leave me alone until you get what you want, will you?" In truth, the idea made her stomach flutter excitedly. But Helena didn't need to know that.

Helena shook her head. "It's not my way."

With a begrudging sigh, Myka once again packed up her things and followed Helena out of the library. This time, Helena took her hand and dragged her through the store, behind the curtain in the back, and down a flight of stairs. "There's not some kind of secret sex club down here, is there?" Myka asked nervously.

"It's the backstock warehouse," Helena said, as if Myka were so stupid it hurt. She picked up a deerskin flogger and held it out. "Here."

Myka took the whip and ran her fingers through the falls. "I'll have to hit you fairly hard to leave marks with this."

Helena shrugged. "I prefer it to the latigo."

Myka shrugged as well and put down her bag. "Suit yourself."

Helena had worn a dress with front buttons purposely that day, and she turned away from Myka to undo them. When she had opened the last button, she peeled the dress from her shoulders, baring her back, and quickly clipped her hair atop her head to get it out of the way. Prepared, she stepped up to one of the crosses and raised her arms, wrapping her fingers around the wooden beams.

Myka moved closer, stopping a few feet behind Helena, and allowed her eyes to roam the expanse of smooth pale skin that had been exposed to her. She drew the deerskin falls through her hand one last time, and began the dance that would take them both flying.

Helena bit her lip, squeezed the beams tighter to keep her lazy moans to herself. Myka's aim and force were perfect, stinging her skin but never burning, never straying, not even one tip of one fall. She could have endured it forever.

Once Helena was properly warmed up, Myka flicked her wrist in a figure eight pattern, cutting the tips back and forth across the girl's reddening skin, leaving slightly darker red stripes in their wake.

Helena's muscles tensed, adjusting to the harsher blows, and she tempered her breathing accordingly. In on the drawback, out on the impact. It truly was like a dance, and Myka had perfect rhythm. By the time her classmate stopped, she was panting. It was unbelievable, the muted fire consuming her back and shoulders, and she wondered whether she could stand if she let go of the cross. No one had ever whipped her so well.

Myka slowly lowered the flogger after the last stroke, and hung it on the wall where Helena had taken it from. She had to be careful, now... she was in topspace, and nothing had been negotiated between herself and the pretty dark-haired girl. It would be so easy to walk over and command her, take her to the next level, utterly and completely use and debase her, but... she wouldn't. She turned away, focusing on her breathing, flooding herself with reminders that this was just a game, and that she had no claim to Helena Wells. And when her mind returned to the ground, she was glad she hadn't done anything untoward. It was difficult, in that moment of bliss, to take a step back and figure out if you really, genuinely wanted something, or if you simply wanted it because you were high and would regret it when the endorphins wore off.

Helena knew what Myka was doing without even having to look. She loved and hated her for it. And she took the time to come back to herself, back to the present plane of existence, both fancy shoes planted solidly on the ground.

"Shall I help you do your dress?" Myka finally spoke, after long, long minutes of silence.

"No," Helena answered. "I want to see. You can go if you like, just warn Lark I'll be coming up half naked."

Myka flushed, and picked up her bag, turning without another word to go up the stairs. She caught the counter girl's attention and passed along Helena's message, flushing darker at the raised eyebrow she received, and then hurried out the door.

Helena took a few more minutes to collect herself, and covered her breasts with her hands as she walked upstairs. "Look now," she told Lark, stopping in front of the counter and turning her back.

Lark's raised eyebrow turned into a dropped jaw, and she reached one finger out to trace the marks on Helena's back. "HG, they're beautiful," she said in awe. "I'm jealous."

"You're not just saying that?" Helena asked, turning her head to try and see.

"Nuh," Lark said articulately. "Go look in the mirror."

"I should have had her do my breasts instead... then I wouldn't need a mirror," Helena said a bit petulantly, but when she saw her back in the mirror, the petulance faded. Her stomach clenched, her panties getting wetter at the gorgeous, symmetrical marks criss-crossing her upper back. "Why couldn't she be unethical, Lark?" she asked, mostly to herself as she studied the mild welts, turning a few times to get a different angle.

"What? Honey, you know you don't really want someone unethical..."

"I know, I know. I just wish she'd've fucked me after, is all."

"Helena," came a disapproving voice descending the stairs from the office. "Not on the sales floor, dear. I've asked you a hundred times."

"Sorry, Mother," Helena sighed, pulling her dress back on and doing it up.

"Not the dress, dear, the language," Mrs. Wells said with a wave of her hand, moving to kiss her daughter's cheek. "Who made that lovely mess on your back?"

"Friend from school," Helena said, returning the kiss and reaching up to take her hair down.

"You found someone your age? Oh that's wonderful, dear," Mrs. W said with a smile. "I don't know how approving I should have been of those older boys."

"Oh Mother, please don't," Helena said, rolling her eyes. "We both know you f-- screwed them behind my back, and that's why you stopped being so 'approving'. Don't go all normal parent on me."

"Fine, fine," the older woman said dramatically with a shake of her head. "Love you."

"Love you too. Dinner will be ready by seven, will you be home?"

"No, I have a date. Don't wait up..."

Helena rolled her eyes again, but just once in awhile it would be nice if her mum came home at a decent hour.

--

After dinner, Helena cleaned up a bit and did the dishes, then sat and relaxed for a few minutes before stripping out of her clothes for a shower. She caught sight of her back as she stepped under the spray of warm water, and she groaned, letting her head fall forward, the water cascading across her sensitive skin. As her hand slipped between her thighs, she wondered what she'd say when she saw Myka at school.

--

Myka had gotten home to an empty house, big surprise there, and refused to contemplate the events of that afternoon. She had homework to finish, and she got right to it, only stopping to snack on something so she didn't starve. She did extra credit, things that hadn't even been assigned, and then, exhausted, she went to bed around midnight.

--

Helena spent several hours before school going back and forth over whether to show off her back or not. It lacked class, that was certain, but it would give her such a naughty thrill all day long. She decided to be trashy and do it.

None of her dresses would accomplish what she wanted, so she had to dig around in the back of her closet to find a pair of jeans and a halter top. They didn't look half bad, actually, though she definitely preferred dresses. She perfected her makeup and tied her hair on top of her head, feeling deliciously scandalous for the first time in months, and went to school.

--

Of all the strange things that had ever happened in the world, Helena's friends experienced the strangest. The raven-haired girl was wearing pants. PANTS. And boots, and a slutty halter top! "What. In the hell. Are you wearing?" Claudia asked, the first thing out of any of their mouths as they met in the hallway.

"Pants. And a shirt. And some shoes," Helena mocked her, tossing one hand up in the air and twirling around a la some ballet dancer she couldn't remember the name of. And, as expected, they all started fussing over her back.

"Oh my God," Belle gushed, grabbing Helena to stop her mid-twirl. "What happened? And why didn't you cover it up?"

"She wants to show it off, stupid," Claudia snapped, rolling her eyes. "And you know what happened. You know our best friend is a kinky bitch."

Helena laughed and wriggled her ass suggestively. "Let go of me, I have to go to class."

Unfortunately, at that moment, Myka happened to walk by, and see Helena, and start choking. What did the girl think she was doing, parading around school like that?!

"What's the matter, Bering?" Belle taunted. "Can't handle the fact that other people might be getting some?"

Helena bit her lip, trying so hard not to smirk. "Belle, shut up," she said, shaking her head.

Myka shot Belle a death glare. She'd never particularly liked that one, and the dislike flared to an even greater degree whenever the stupid, spoiled brat deigned to speak to her. "Yes, do shut up, please," she said with a sickly sweet smile.

"Just because YOU could never get someone to touch YOU doesn't mean the rest of us can't have some fun," Belle continued, undaunted.

Helena couldn't hold it in any longer and she burst into laughter. "Belle, you idiot," she exclaimed, drawing a hand across her face in exasperation and amusement. "You might want to try asking me who whipped me before you start jumping to conclusions."

Myka was in a bit of disbelief that Helena was actually going to admit it, right there in the hallway, to her uppity, judgmental friends. But her smugness at making Belle feel stupid outweighed the disbelief, and she smirked.

Belle and Claudia's faces both went stark. "What?" Claudia asked, the first to speak after everyone had gone silent, staring at each other.

"She's good with a whip," Helena said with a happy little grin. "The best I've had. So show her some respect."

Both of Helena's friends stared at Myka now, seeming to retake stock of her, and maybe look at her in a new light. Neither said anything to her, though. Not so much as a peep, and certainly not an apology or a show of respect.

Myka wasn't sure what in the hell to think. So she just turned and went to class, focusing on that.

--

The day dragged on for Helena, and it seemed like forever before science finally came around. She sat next to Myka, of course, and in what was fast becoming tradition, she leaned as far over as her chair would allow and whispered to the brunette. "It's been a long time since I couldn't sit properly..."

Myka raised an eyebrow, continuing to stare at her textbook. She didn't respond. She had a bad feeling that the whole situation was going to get out of hand.

Helena pouted as the teacher came in and slid down into her seat, throwing Myka a displeased glance. She got out a piece of paper and ripped off a corner, scrawling a note in her swirly feminine handwriting, then subtly passed it to her classmate.

I'll let you fuck me if you do it.

Myka read the note and started choking for the second time that day, pounding a fist on her chest, unable to get a full breath in for quite awhile. She crumpled the note tightly in one hand and shot Helena a fiercely disapproving look. "Don't do me any favors!" she hissed when the teacher's back was turned.

Helena blinked, not having expected that reaction, and realized how insensitive and... narcissistic she had sounded. "I didn't mean it like... shit," she cursed under her breath. "I'll explain after class."

"The president of your fan club must be absent again today," Myka whispered dryly. "And you're trying to recruit new members by offering yourself as a whore?"

"I said I'll explain after class!" Helena whined through clenched teeth.

Myka refused to pay attention to Helena for the rest of class, and even intended to rush off afterward, but the stubborn girl beat her to the door and took her hand, dragging her down the hall to an empty alcove.

"I didn't mean to be..."

"Patronizing? Selfish? Insulting? Presumtuous?" Myka supplied.

"Any of those things," Helena said earnestly. "Except maybe selfish, but I can't help that. I'm sorry, though! You're brilliant, and the last thing I want to do is insult you."

Myka stared hard at her, then sighed and moved around behind her. "I can't believe you're deliberately showing these off," she finally said. "But they look very nice."

Helena tossed a grin over her shoulder. "Thank you."

"The bell's going to ring in two minutes," Myka then said. "We've got to go."

"Meet me after school so I don't have to stalk the library?" Helena asked hopefully.

Resigned, and unwilling to show the part of her that was pleased, Myka rolled her eyes. "Fine."

Helena smirked, but not unkindly, and skipped off to class, her boots making a rather rhythmic tapping sound on the linoleum.

--

Myka checked her watch for the third time and was about to leave when a breathless Helena made her appearance.

"I was held after class!" she explained, starting the familiar walk, Myka trailing slightly behind.

"I almost left."

"It wasn't my fault."

"I still almost left."

"Give me your number, I'll text you next time."

Next time? What was she getting herself into? "I'll give it to you later," she hedged.

Helena frowned at that answer, but didn't push it. She'd pushed enough for one day. She already couldn't believe she'd gotten Myka to agree to beat her again. When they reached the shop, Helena greeted Lark with a kiss on the cheek, then moved to the far wall and picked up one of the heavier wooden paddles. "Do you know how to use this one?" she asked.

Myka blew out a slow breath and took it. "I know how to use every single thing in this store. You can stop asking." She started toward the stairs, then stopped and turned around, trading the paddle for a lighter one. "Oh, and..." she started, stepping closer and leaning in to Helena's personal space, "I'm the top. I pick the paddle. Now go downstairs."

Helena caught her breath, her face flushing as she turned and all but fled down the stairs.

Lark raised both pierced eyebrows, clearly impressed. "What the hell did you say to her?"

Myka exhaled a sigh of relief, and just shook her head at Lark, heading down the stairs after Helena. She'd taken a big chance there, with no idea how the other girl would react, and she was glad it turned out okay.

When she got to the bottom of the stairs, her heart gave a thud in her chest. Helena, for one split second, looked so incredibly submissive, standing in the center of the room with her head bowed and her hands behind her back. But the moment was brief and her head snapped up, her hands coming in front of her.

"Where do you want me?" Helena asked, getting straight to the point.

Myka glanced around the room, her eyes finally settling on a bondage table - the kind with a cage for a bottom and padded leather for a top. "Bent over that," she answered, inclining her head toward it.

Helena moved swiftly, confidently, though she was trembling with anticipation on the inside. She started to bend over the table when Myka stopped her by slapping the paddle down in front of her. "What--"

"Pick that up," Myka instructed.

Helena was slightly annoyed, but did as she was asked.

"How heavy do you think that is?"

"What? Like in ounces? I have no idea."

Myka was patient. "Heavy enough to use over a pair of jeans?" she asked, her voice low and meaningful.

Helena flushed for the second time in ten minutes and dropped the paddle. "No.." she answered, her throat dry.

"No," Myka agreed, and picked the implement up herself again.

Cheeks burning and her panties soaked, Helena undid her jeans and pushed them down to her knees, then tried again to bend over the table. This time Myka let her.

"How many do you think you can take?" Myka asked, running her palm up and down the surface of the wood.

"Will it matter what I say?" Helena asked, then held her breath.

Myka smirked. "No," she said, moving around behind her classmate. But she chuckled and shook her head. "Yes, of course it will. How many?"

Now Helena shook her head. "I really have no idea."

"Don't you do this all the time?"

"Not as often as I'd like," the girl pouted. "And I've never counted."

"I did hear that you were failing math..."

Helena shot her classmate a fierce look over one shoulder. "Maybe you should offer to tutor me instead of making fun of me."

"Lesson number one. How to count to fifty."

"I already know how to count to fifty."

"Then you should breeze right through it." Without waiting for any further baiting, Myka brought the paddle down with a swift CRACK.

Helena groaned, quickly burying her face in her arm, and started the count. "One." Another crack and she clenched her thighs. "Two." The paddle was a bit lighter than she'd have preferred, but that almost made it even better.

Myka would have grinned, but she was focused on her work. When she got to ten, she took a break to pull down Helena's underwear. They were lacy and black, and wet. Given that fact, she was surprised that Helena didn't try to stop her.

Helena bit her lip, hoping Myka would... be unethical for once. But other than a slight pause, there was no indication she'd even noticed. The paddling started up again as soon as her panties joined her jeans around her knees. "Eleven," she counted, closing her eyes.

Myka marveled at how easy it seemed for Helena to take the blows. Like it was the most natural thing in the world, to be bent over and paddled.

Three in a row caught her attention, and she squeezed her legs together, not sure if she could make it to fifty without grinding against the table. "Twelve, thirteen, fourteen."

On the twenty-fifth stroke, Myka watched Helena start to lose her restraint. One of the girl's hands moved from the table, and the subtle shifting of her hips let Myka know what she was doing. So she waited.

Helena had no idea how Myka would react, or even if the brunette would figure out what she was doing, but she couldn't help it. It felt too good, and she had no outlet. She loved the sting, loved the fact that she'd have invisible bruises that made it uncomfortable to sit. She had to come, or she was going to explode. And since Myka was obviously not going to abandon decorum and do it for her, she had to do it herself.

Helena brought herself off quickly, and her little cry of release made Myka shiver and think things she shouldn't, and once the little temptress had relaxed, she continued the paddling as if nothing had happened.

"Twenty-six."

--

They finally made it to fifty, and Helena was crying and squirming and moaning, but she kept her hands on the table, not wanting to lose control again. "Fifty," she groaned, her vision blurry with tears, fingers gripping the edge of the table hard enough to hurt her knuckles. And she was so wet. She didn't think she'd ever been so wet. It hurt so unbelievably fucking good. No one could ever beat her as well as Myka did, she decided then. She was fast becoming hooked.

Myka was amazed, and so impressed with Helena that she wasn't sure what to say now that it was done. She set the paddle down and very gently, very carefully pulled up the other girl's panties, settling them over her hips and making sure the elastic wasn't folded uncomfortably anywhere. Her finger beneath the waistband got quite a noise from Helena, and she hurried to complete her task, her face flushed. "Shall I help you up the stairs?" she asked, her voice low and hesitant.

"It's okay it's okay," Helena said in a rush. "I'm fine. You can go." That was the last thing she wanted, but she wasn't going to push it. If she went too far, Myka might not want to see her again.

Myka faltered, feeling a sense of responsibility to make sure Helena really was okay. "I'm aware that I can go," she finally said, straightening to her full height. "I don't need your permission to leave. I do, however, need your permission to help you up the stairs. If you'd please give it."

"Fine," Helena snapped, sniffling and wiping her eyes now that she was done crying. It was a little cathartic to cry, even though they weren't unhappy tears.

"Wonderful," Myka said dryly, and helped Helena get her pants back on properly. And without waiting for the girl to change her mind, she slid one arm under Helena's knees and one behind her shoulders, and lifted her easily. "Grab the paddle."

Helena hissed in surprise, and quickly grabbed the paddle as Myka started toward the stairs. She was about to complain, but why should she? She loved being pampered, and this was as pampered as it gets. She did blush though, at being fussed over, even though she secretly liked it. "You really don't have to--"

"Do this," Myka finished for her. "I know. You can stop pretending not to love it."

"Whatever, could you walk faster, please?"

"You're light, but you're not a feather," Myka said, hiding a grin behind an expression crafted to look like annoyance.

"I'm going to have bruises, right?" Helena changed the subject.

"Yes. Why?"

"No reason."

"People don't ask questions for no reason."

"Apparently they can."

"No, actually. Every action has a motivation behind it. Even the smallest gestures made without obvious purpose have motivation. Whether a muscle twitched that made your thighs clench, or you did it to ward off sexual frustration, there is always a reason."

"If you wouldn't mind leaving the geeky part of yourself at school, that'd be great."

"Oh really?" Myka raised an eyebrow. "What other part of me is there?"

"The girl without a chip on her shoulder... who can march into my mother's store and use any of the toys with such astounding skill and grace that she has me begging her to beat me. That part."

"Why do you like to be beaten?"

"Why do you like to beat me?"

"Being good at something and liking it are very different."

"Do you like to beat me?"

Myka paused as she reached the top of the stairs, and sighed, setting Helena on her feet. "I think so."

"How can you not know whether you like something?"

"I like it."

"Will you do it again tomorrow?"

"No. Your body needs time to rest."

"I think I know what my body n--"

"I won't do it tomorrow," Myka said, her voice gaining the subtlest hint of dominance. "When your welts and bruises are gone, I'll do it."

Helena wanted to argue, but in addition to the fact that Myka was right, she also didn't want to make her classmate mad. "I'm sorry," she said quietly. "It's been so long, it's hard to get enough. I don't mean to be so ungrateful. Thank you, for the spanking."

Myka softened, and gave the girl a nod. "See you at school," she said, and then grinned. "I'll enjoy watching you try to sit comfortably in science class."

"Don't forget to sign up for my fan club..."

"As soon as you beat me on a test."

--

"I want it so much, Mummy," Helena sighed, counting off the riding crops and marking down the inventory on her spreadsheet.

"Why do you only call me 'Mummy' when you're whining?" Mrs. Wells asked. "And what is it you want so much?"

"Everything," Helena said with a pout.

"Do try to be more specific, dear..."

"I want her to play with me every day. It's been an hour, Mother, and I'm already craving it."

"I see. You sound to me like you're willing to shred the safe part of safe, sane and consensual."

"Sometimes I feel like I am."

"That would be unacceptable, dear, and I'm glad that your friend knows boundaries, since you apparently do not. Haven't I taught you moderation?"

"You've taught me a lot of things, Mother. Moderation was never one of them. You don't practice it yourself, you do realize that? You haven't been home for dinner in months. Maybe even years. Why is it okay for you to go out with a different man every night, but it's not okay for me to want what I want?"

Mrs. Wells turned and peered at her daughter sternly. "For one, I have worlds of experience in this lifestyle that you do not. I understand that you've had your fair share of encounters, but really, Helena, the time you've spent under the lash pales in comparison to the length of time I've put in. So there are things you simply don't know. Things you couldn't know, because you've never experienced them. Do you think I want to come to work one day and find my daughter indisposed because she played too hard and didn't know her limits?"

"How dare you accuse me of--"

"I'm not finished, young lady," Mrs. W interrupted. "And I am still your mother, so you're going to listen."

Surprised, Helena slowly nodded her head. "Yes, Mother."

"Now, the other reason is that I'm not practicing SM every night, dear. I can have a date without beating him or being beaten myself, you know. So, you WILL practice the safe aspect of safe, sane and consensual, or you will not be allowed into this store, nor will you be permitted to see your friend, do I make myself clear?"

Helena was not used to having limits set by her mother, but if she was honest with herself, she'd admit that it was refreshing. She knew her mother cared about her, she just... often felt like she was raising herself. "Yes, Mother, you have made yourself perfectly clear."

"Good. I love you, dear. You know that, right?"

"Yes, Mother, and I love you," Helena said with a little smile, kissing her mother's cheek. "Will you be home for dinner?" But she already knew the answer.

--

It really was amusing to watch Helena slide carefully into her seat in science class the next day. Myka couldn't hide her smirk. The girl squirmed so much during class that she was surprised their teacher didn't comment. Her amusement faded, however, when the bell rang and Helena caught her arm before she left the room. She thought the girl was going to bat her perfect lashes and stare pleadingly with those pretty brown eyes and ask her to do something she'd already said she wouldn't do, but Helena surprised her.

Smoothing down the lapels of her black velvet jacket, Helena nervously leaned forward and spoke softly to avoid being overheard by the teacher. "I would like to show you my bruises."

"What?" Myka asked, her eyebrows raising, and she cleared her throat to mask her sudden flush of arousal. "Why?"

"Because you made them," Helena whispered. "You deserve to see them. To see your work."

Myka's flush turned to a smirk, and she gripped Helena's arm firmly, moving the girl into the hallway and away from the prying ears of their science teacher. "You really like to push, don't you?"

"What? I don't-- I wasn't-- what do you mean?" Helena asked, genuinely confused.

"I mean you sound like you want to be the one on top," Myka told her. "You want to call all the shots, yet you want me to wield the weapons. You can't have it both ways."

Now it was Helena's turn to flush, a rosy tint creeping over her pretty face. "I don't want it both ways," she said softly. "I don't know any other way than what I'm doing."

Myka opened her mouth to retort, realized Helena was being sincere, and closed it again to think of something nicer to say. "I'm sorry. I thought you were more experienced." Oh, that was so nice. She shook her head. "What I mean is... you need to stop trying so hard. Give me a chance to ask to see your bruises, instead of offering right away. Give me a chance to choose a paddle instead of handing me the paddle of your choice. Does that make sense?"

Helena's heart sped up, pounding in her chest, and she swallowed hard. But it made sense, and she nodded. "Yes, it does." She paused, wondering whether she should add to that, and finally forged ahead. "With my other... partners, I had to explain what to do. Every time. So it's hard to accept that you already know, and don't need me to run the show. I don't mean to try to control everything. It's just that old habits die hard, and--"

Myka interrupted with a gentle finger placed against Helena's glossy red lips, shh-ing her.

Helena froze, standing completely still, unmoving, with the exception of her eyelids sliding down over her eyes in what seemed like exaggerated slow motion to her. Her brain went a little fuzzy and she was barely able to tell her lips not to kiss Myka's finger.

"I'll see you tomorrow," the brunette whispered, backing off before she did something stupid in the hallway of the school.

Helena felt the absence immediately, and sighed, reluctantly turning to go to her next class. She didn't want to wait until tomorrow to see Myka again. Why did they only have one class together?

--

Myka went straight home after school, not wanting to chance running into Helena at the library. She knew the girl would ask her for something she'd already said no to, and she decided that avoiding the confrontation was the best thing to do.

Of course the house was empty, and she did have quite a bit of homework to do, so she made herself something to eat and sat down at the kitchen table to get to work. But fate would not have her complete her assignments uninterrupted. Her parents poured through the door, engaged in a heated argument. She quickly gathered her books and retreated to her room, shutting the door in an attempt to ward off as much of the noise as possible. She could still hear them yelling, but at least she couldn't make out what they were saying.

A few minutes later, a knock on her door made her stiffen. What could they possibly want?

"Myka?"

"Jordan?" It was her baby brother.

"Can I come in?"

She got up and scurried to the door, unlocking it to let him in. "What's wrong?"

Jordan sniffed and wiped his eyes, and just as Myka started to close the door, a crying Kaylen shuffled into the hallway as well.

"Babies?" Myka asked, ushering Kaylen inside and closing the door. "What's wrong? What happened?"

Jordan wasn't sure what to say - he just curled up on Myka's bed, the safest place in the whole house.

Kaylen was able to explain, being a bit older. Her voice was a little muffled by tears but Myka could understand her. "They're fighting about us again. Mom said things would be so much easier if I wasn't sick all the time, and then Dad said we'd be able to see more doctors for me if they hadn't ever had Jordan."

Myka was, mildly put, horrified. She could feel her blood starting to boil. "Kaylen, you're perfect just the way you are," she said calmly, kissing the top of her sister's head. "And Jordan, we wouldn't be a family without you, you got that?" She kissed him as well, then lifted Kaylen into the bed with him. "Stay here while I go talk to them, okay?"

Both kids nodded.

Myka steeled herself, and fairly stormed down the hall to the kitchen, where her parents were still arguing. She tried to get their attention with subtlety, but of course they didn't notice her. Finally she'd HAD it, and screamed. "SHUT UP!!!"

David and Ashley both stopped mid-sentence and turned on Myka. "How dare you," David began, and watched as Ashley slapped their eldest child.

Myka took the blow in stride, having expected it or something close, and started to say her piece. "You can slap me all you want, Mother," she growled, "but I am not going to let you ruin Jordan and Kaylen's childhoods like you ruined mine. Do you know they could hear what you said about them? Do you know that?"

David and Ashley turned to each other again, and both started talking at the same time, blaming each other.

"If you hadn't mentioned Kaylen being sick--"

"If you didn't talk so loud--"

"Stop it!" Myka shouted above them both. "Just stop it! It doesn't matter whose fault it is, what matters is that your children are in my room crying, and feeling unwanted, and they NEED you!"

That seemed to penetrate at least a little, and both parents turned to head down the hall.

Myka listened at the door for a minute to make sure the idiots were actually trying to fix the damage, and then she left. She needed some fresh air and some peace and quiet.

--

Helena set the table for two, even though she knew it was pointless. She served herself, waited for another five minutes, then started to eat.

When she was finished she washed the dishes and took a long, warm, relaxing shower, then got into her nightgown, brushed her teeth, and got in bed. It was early, but she was tired and had nothing else to do.

As her eyes drifted closed, her thoughts turned to Myka, and a blush warmed her cheeks, one hand sliding down to rub her bottom. It was still tender, and she imagined Myka's fingertips skating across the sensitive skin. She kept rubbing, kept imagining, until the front door slammed open and she heard two different timbres of laughter. Oh, great. Her mother had actually brought one of her boyfriends HOME. With a scowl, she got up and shut her bedroom door, locking it just to be safe. She was pretty sure her mother was responsible enough not to let a man stray into her teenage daughter's bedroom, but you could never be too careful. And now she had no desire to fantasize, so she just slept.

--

Myka had had a horrible night, and she needed something to make her smile. So she waited in the hall ten minutes before science class, and caught Helena's arm as the saucy little thing walked by.

Helena shrieked in surprise, but not very loud, and put a hand to her heart. "You scared me!"

"Sorry," Myka smirked. "I'd like to see now."

"To see what?" Helena asked, realizing as soon as the words left her mouth. "Ohhhh." She grinned, now. "Okay. Let's go to the-- I mean--" She stopped talking, trying not to control the situation. So she stood quietly and endured Myka's raised eyebrow in silence.

Myka waited, to see if Helena would continue, and smiled when she didn't. "Bathroom," she finished the two-minute-old sentence. When Helena still just stood there, a little shiver ran through her and she took the girl's hand, leading her to the closest bathroom.

They went into the largest stall together, and Helena locked the door, then reached behind herself to pull up her dress.

Myka stepped closer, curling her fingers into the top of very thin black nylons and white cotton underwear, and gently tugged them both down over Helena's bottom, resting them around the girl's thighs. "Oh," she exclaimed, getting another shiver. "Gorgeous."

Helena held her breath, her eyes rolling back, and she gripped the hem of her dress tighter. "It's okay to touch," she whispered.

"I'm aware," Myka whispered back. "Your body language tells me everything I need to know, and more."

Helena blushed and breathed. "Oh..."

"I'm not going to touch."

It was al HG could do to hold in a Wells tantrum. "Why not?" she managed to say curtly.

"Are you taking a tone with me?"

Helena's blush intensified, her jaw working silently to come up with an acceptable response to that. "I... I meant why not?" she asked, much more politely.

"The tone is better, but you're still questioning a decision I made as a top."

Now Helena did whine, and stamp her foot, the fancy heeled shoe making quite the sound as it hit the tiled floor.

"If you do that again, I'm not coming back to your mother's store for a week."

Helena's eyes went wide, and she corrected herself instantly, standing primly with her hands behind her back, holding her dress up like a perfect young lady.

Myka smirked, delicately pulling up the girl's underwear and nylons. "Much more appropriate, thank you," she said. "Your marks should be gone in a day or two."

"So... I have to wait to see you outside of school until then?"

Myka froze, clenching and unclenching her fists, trying to figure out exactly what Helena was asking. "What do you mean?"

"No, nothing," Helena muttered, blushing furiously, dropping her dress and forcing a big fake smile to cover her embarrassment. "See you in class?"

"Helena."

She stopped her retreat. She thought it was the first time Myka had ever used her name.

"Do I seem like the kind of person who wants a fake smile, wants you to pretend everything's okay when it's not?"

"I-- well no, but--"

"But nothing. I just didn't understand your question. In what other capacity did you want to see me, if not at school and not for a whipping?"

"I thought you might want to come to one of my fan club meetings," Helena snarked. "Or, you know, maybe help tutor me in math instead of using my ignorance against me when it comes up."

Myka chuckled softly and shook her head. "I don't think you'd want me for a math tutor. I'm strict. You have to do all your homework if you want a spanking," she said, lowering her voice at the last part. They were still in the bathroom of the school, after all, and could easily be overheard at a normal volume.

"I always do my homework," Helena whispered back.

"Then why are you almost failing your classes?"

Helena's hackles rose and she snapped at Myka. "Because I need a tutor!"

"At the library. I refuse to be alone with you because I know you'll pester me to beat you."

"The library's fine," Helena said, puffing out her chest as she stalked out of the stall and out of the bathroom.

"Ew, she didn't wash her hands," some girl said exaggeratedly.

Helena balled her hands into fists and stuck her head back through the door. "I wasn't going to the bathroom," she hissed. "I was talking to Myka." And she left again.

Myka couldn't help the snort of laughter as she moved out of the stall. She washed her hands, just to confuse the obnoxious pair primping in front of the mirror, and moved toward the door, hearing the girl ask her friend, "why did SHE wash her hands then?"

Myka paused at the door, debated saying something entirely inappropriate like 'I was masturbating', but ultimately decided it wasn't worth it, and just left.

--

"So, why can't your mother help you with your studies?" Myka asked as they settled down in a relatively abandoned corner of the library to work.

"She's never home," Helena said tersely. "Don't you think I would have asked her if I could have? Do you think I want to look stupid in front of you? No. But she's never there. I cook dinner for both of us every night, and eat by myself. Are you happy?"

Myka regarded her quietly for a moment, and shook her head. "Happy is not the word that comes to mind. I wasn't trying to offend you. And God knows, you're not stupid, Helena. Now get out your math book, please."

Embarrassed, but willing to power through it, Helena got her book out of her backpack and laid it on the table. "Can we start with ninth grade pre-algebra?" she asked, flushing slightly.

Myka did not comment that they were in the twelfth grade. She simply nodded and held up one finger to indicate Helena should wait, then left the table to find a suitable textbook in the reference section.

Helena squirmed in her seat, wishing her studies would come as easily to her as making friends.

Myka returned and took the chair next to Helena, opening the pre-algebra book to the page she wanted to start with. "Do you have paper and a pencil?"

Helena nodded, producing a notebook and a glittery black pencil, of course, from her backpack, and laid them out.

Myka eyed the pencil, then shook her head and got her own normal one. "I'll use this, thank you," she said with a wry smile, scribbling down a problem on the first blank sheet of paper in Helena's notebook. "Can you solve that?"

Helena looked at the paper. "Five plus x equals ten." She looked at Myka. "I... can't," she said, ashamed she couldn't do such an easy problem, but she didn't understand why there was a letter involved.

"Really?" Myka asked, raising an eyebrow, but at the wounded look on Helena's face she realized her classmate wasn't joking, and hurried to cover her tracks. "That's fine, that's fine," she assured her. "Now I'll know where to start. What is it that confuses you about this?"

"Why is there a letter?"

"The letter is called the variable. Pretend it's just a blank space. Five plus something equals ten. What do you add to five, if you want to reach ten?"

"Five," Helena answered, no problem.

"Exactly. So x equals five. If you switch out the x for a five, the problem becomes true. Do you see?"

Helena crossed out the x and put a five above it, then read the problem again. "Five plus five equals ten. Okay, I get that... that's easy enough. Why couldn't anyone else explain it like you just did?"

"Because they do not have my skill," Myka grinned. She wrote down a few more similar problems, and Helena was able to solve them all without help. "You're learning already," she praised, thinking of the time she helped Kaylen to study for a math test, and how bright her sister's eyes had gotten when she'd passed. "Now, let's try the same thing, but with subtraction. How about... forty-five minus x equals thirty-four. What is x?"

Helena thought briefly, doing the subtraction in her head, and bit her lip. "Eleven?"

"Yes," Myka said calmly, though the look on Helena's face made her want to clap, or cheer, or something. "Now, how is your multiplication?"

"Good, I think..."

"Okay, try this one then. Five times x equals twenty. What is x?"

Helena bit her lip, concentrating as hard as she could, closing her eyes to try to see the problem in her head. "Five times what equals twenty?" she asked herself, and she knew the answer. "Four." She opened her eyes. "Right? Four?"

"Yes. Four," Myka said, unable to hide her grin.

Helena gave a squeal, throwing her arms around Myka's neck. She wanted to just... kiss her! "Nobody's ever made math easy for me," she said, her excitement still simmering as she returned to her own personal space.

"You're doing wonderful," Myka said sincerely. "Let's try division, and then we'll move on to another topic."

"I'm not so great at division," Helena said, deflating a little and staring at her hands, which were now fumbling in her lap.

"That's okay, let's try anyway. Sixty divided by x is fifteen. What's x?"

Helena tried to figure it out, but she just couldn't wrap her mind around it. "I don't know," she admitted.

"Okay, well, that's where we'll start."

"What if I can't learn it?"

"Don't be ridiculous. I'm teaching you."

That made Helena laugh, and cheer up considerably. "Oh, I didn't realize that my learning curve had nothing to do with me."

--

An hour later, Helena was able to do any problem with one x variable in it, regardless of the other numbers involved, and Myka was quite satisfied with how the tutoring session had gone. "Good night," she said as they reached the library door.

"It's not even five," Helena laughed. "And not dark."

"All right, good evening, then," Myka amended, raising one perfect brow.

"Thank you, so much," Helena said, sobering. "For taking the time to help me. There aren't a lot of people who would do that. For anyone, let alone for a spoiled brat like me."

"You're welcome," Myka said, ignoring the self-deprecating behavior and focusing on the thank-you. "How often do you want lessons?"

"I'm three grades behind, so... I don't know... three times a week? If your social calendar isn't too full, of course..."

"Cheeky," Myka smirked, shaking her head. "Monday, Wednesday, and Friday then."

"I know I am, I can't help it," Helena said with a shrug. "But really, thank you. You're an amazing teacher, just like you're an amazing top. Is there anything you don't do well?"

Myka thought, and now it was her turn to shrug. "Bottom?"

Helena laughed again, and adjusted her backpack over her shoulder, wishing she could just invite Myka over for dinner or something. But she couldn't. Myka wouldn't want to have dinner with her, especially since she'd just given her time for teaching. "Well, good night. I mean, evening." She flushed and turned away, walking quickly down the sidewalk, planning out dinner in her head to avoid thinking about Myka.

--

Two days later, Helena's bruises were gone, and she could sit fine in class. She did her customary maneuver of leaning over her chair almost far enough to fall, and whispering to Myka. "My bruises are gone..."

Myka's lips twitched, pulling into a smirk no matter how she tried to conceal it. "How lovely."

"So, uh... maybe you could..." She let the rest of the sentence trail off, biting her lip nervously.

"Oh no. We have math in the library today."

"But I'd rather--"

"I know what you'd rather, but it's not going to happen. You asked me to tutor you, we decided on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Today, as you well know, is Friday. We are not skipping a lesson to indulge ourselves."

"But--"

"Don't ask again," Myka said, her tone impressively final.

Helena felt a whine coming on, and clamped down on it, keeping it at bay. She didn't even stomp her foot. She didn't agree, though, or nod enthusiastically, or even nod at all, but she didn't ask again, either.

--

After the math lesson, they went their separate ways. Helena to an empty house, and Myka hoping that hers would be.

No such luck. Her parents were home, but not her siblings. If she had to have someone home, she would've preferred it the other way around, most definitely. She cherished her baby brother and sister, and couldn't stand their moronic, ignorant parents.

As the inevitable arguing started up and gained volume, Myka slammed her bedroom door, trying to block it out. She thought of Helena, cooking dinner for two and eating alone, wishing her mother would join her, even just once. The arguing continued to escalate, and was impossible to block out any longer. She made a snap decision and changed out of her school clothes, into a pair of slacks and a nice blouse, and fished her prescriptionless glasses out of the back of her dresser and put them on.

She didn't feel like walking all the way to the shop, so she took a cab, and really hoped Lark would be working. She breathed a sigh of relief to see the counter girl, and hurried up to her, motioning the cab to wait.

"Oh, HG's not here," Lark said when she noticed Myka's approach.

"I know... I was hoping you might give me her address," Myka said, preferring to get right to the point and not patronize the girl with small talk.

"I wouldn't, if you were anyone else," Lark said, giving Myka a serious look, but scribbling the information on a post-it note and handing it over.

"I'm certain you wouldn't," Myka said by way of thanks, and got back into the cab.

Ten minutes later she was straightening her slacks and smoothing her hands across her blouse to remove any nonexistent wrinkles, and knocking on Helena's door.

Startled, Helena almost dropped her spoon, her head turning toward the living room and the sound of the knock. Who would be calling on her? Unless perhaps it was one of her mother's suitors. The thought soured her enough to make her consider not answering the door, but with a sigh she got up and answered it anyway. Her eyes went wide when she saw Myka standing on the other side. "Hi, what are you-- I mean-- come in, but why are you here?" She hoped she didn't sound as ungrateful as she thought she did, because that couldn't be further from the truth.

"I needed to get away from my family, and you need yours here with you. You'll settle for a compromise."

"I will?"

"You will." Myka stepped through the door, allowing Helena to close and lock it behind her. "Your mother is not here to have dinner with you, so I will take her place."

It was so matter-of-fact that Helena barely had the inclination to argue. She had no objection to Myka being there, none whatsoever, she just thought that maybe taking the place of her mother wasn't... what? It wasn't what? She had no idea what it wasn't. And by the time she realized that she was still standing staring at the door even after Myka had started moving, the brunette was already seated at the table with a bowl of soup in front of her.

As Helena hesitantly retook her seat, Myka looked at her through the plain, clear lenses of her glasses. "Tell me about your day."

"What?" Helena asked, too confused to eat. "You know about my day, you were there."

Myka tried again, adding a word to make her intent more clear. "Tell me about your day, dear."

Helena got the distinct feeling that she was missing something important, and when it hit her, it hit her. Right in the stomach, like a punch to the gut, and then... lower. Her palms were suddenly clammy and she had to wipe them on her dress. "I, I... went to school..." That was all she could get out, and even that came out sounding like a shadow of her usual voice.

"I see," Myka said with a nod, taking another bite of soup. "Did anything interesting happen at school?"

No, she would not be finishing her dinner. She'd throw it up. She slowly shook her head, grateful for the yes or no question.

"What did you do after school?"

Not a yes or no question there. "I..." Damnit, her voice was never this scratchy. "I had a maths lesson."

"Oh, how wonderful, dear. How did that go?"

Helena swallowed hard and nodded. "It went well."

"Do you have any homework?"

Helena wracked her brain. Did she? "No, I d-- wait, I think I have some english homework."

"You should write it down. How many times do I have to suggest that before you'll take my advice? This soup is delicious, dear. You're an excellent cook. I don't know how a daughter of mine became such an excellent cook, but I'll take it."

More clammy palms, and the back of her neck was starting to perspire as well. Her heart tried to pound its way out of her chest, and she had no idea what to say. Besides a thank-you. "Thank you," she said shakily.

"What's wrong, dear? Are you ill?" Myka rose from her chair and laid the back of her hand across Helena's forehead.

Helena's hands dropped violently to the edge of the table and gripped it, hard. How was it possible to feel so excited and terrified at the same time? You'd think one would overpower the other into submission, but no. And Myka's hand on her bare skin... feeling her for a fever that she knew was there, but not from an infectious source.

"You are quite warm. Fetch a thermometer for me."

Helena didn't think of arguing, mostly because getting a thermometer was a good excuse to escape and gather her wits. She locked herself in the bathroom, just trying to breathe. She felt like splashing cold water on her face, but that would have been obvious, and Myka might think she didn't want this. So she took as many calming breaths as she could, removed the thermometer and covers from the medicine cabinet, and returned to the table.

Myka put on one of the plastic covers and popped the thermometer into Helena's mouth, actually relieved when it beeped to reveal a normal internal temperature. Helena's skin WAS quite warm, and real mother or not, it had been of concern to Myka. "No fever," she announced, handing the instrument back to Helena and retaking her seat to finish her soup. "Finish your dinner before it gets cold, dear."

"I'm not really hungry."

Myka raised an eyebrow. "You've barely touched it. You can't go without dinner."

"Yes but I'm not hungry," Helena insisted, becoming a little annoyed.

"I had planned to watch some television after dinner, but I suppose we'll just sit here until you decide to finish your soup."

Some of her nerves started to fade in the face of growing irritation. "I don't want the damn soup," she said, raising her voice. It's what she would have said to Mrs. Wells in the same situation. If Myka wanted to-- wanted THIS, then she could work for it. She steeled herself for an outburst.

Myka realized what Helena expected, and delivered just the opposite. She scooted her chair closer to Helena's and reached one hand out to cover the girl's and squeeze. "The fact that you're not eating, and the fact your forehead was so warm, they worry me, love. Will you eat just a few bites, for me?" She brought her other hand up to Helena's face and stroked back and forth with her thumb. "Please?"

Helena felt awful, and confused, and safe, and like Myka would make a great mother. "I'm-- I'm sorry," she whispered, her cheeks flushed with shame.

"Just a few bites for me?" Myka asked again, leaning over to kiss Helena's forehead.

The touch of Myka's lips was almost too much for her to handle, and she lost herself in the feel of it. "Yes, Mummy." The words left her lips before she was even aware she was saying them.

Myka nearly fell out of the chair, a shiver running through her entire body. It was all she could do not to move her lips lower, capture Helena's own, and ruin the roles they were playing. She closed her eyes, breathing in through her nose until her lungs were fully inflated, and then letting the breath out just as slowly. "Thank you, dear. Five more bites, and then homework, and then if you want to, you may watch some television with me."

Helena wanted to protest both the food and the homework, but she could feel the thin ice under her skates, and nodded instead, picking up her spoon and starting to eat.

Once she'd had a few bites, she realized her appetite was still there, and she finished the bowl, then washed the dishes, and moved to her bedroom to write her english paper. When she'd finished, she inched her way uncertainly out to the living room, standing in the doorway until Myka noticed her.

"Come sit," Myka said, patting the sofa beside her.

"What are you watching?" Helena asked, peering at the tv as she walked over and sat next to Myka, keeping her weight forward, hesitant to really settle in.

"An old John Wayne movie," Myka told her, amused at the face she made. "What?"

"It's so barbaric," Helena complained.

"I think you mean old-fashioned," Myka replied with a laugh.

"I mean barbaric," Helena insisted.

"Well it's almost over," Myka said, pulling Helena against her. "Relax. You looked like you were about to get up and run a marathon."

Helena wasn't sure how comfortable she should get. It would be nice to be held, and snuggle, but how far was Myka willing to go to be a mother? She didn't want to cross any lines, even though Myka had initiated this.

"I said relax, dear," Myka repeated, snuggling Helena close and kissing the top of her head.

Helena couldn't resist the pull any longer, not after that sweet little kiss on her head, and she curled into Myka, draping one arm around the other girl's waist, and then after a few more seconds of hesitation, she laid her head on Myka's shoulder. She almost gasped when she felt a strong but gentle hand rubbing up and down her back. Why couldn't her mother do this once in awhile? Her mother was good to her, loved her, brought her up with good values, but this was missing. This had been missing for a long time. How did Myka know exactly what she needed? Did she know? Or was it just a lucky guess? "This... feels good," she whispered, her face flushing.

"Mhmm," Myka agreed casually, her eyes on the screen but her attention fully on Helena. She could tell how nervous and scared the girl was, but she could also feel the gratitude. She continued to rub Helena's back for a few more minutes, then kissed the top of her head again. "Why don't you go get into your pajamas and brush your teeth?"

Immediately, Helena's head turned to the clock. "It's only seven," she said, surprised. "And I don't have a bedtime." She wasn't trying to argue, just be informative. Or that's what she told herself, at the very least.

"I didn't say it was bedtime, did I? But if I had, it wouldn't be wise to argue with me, would it?"

Helena didn't have to think that one through. "No, I suppose it wouldn't."

"Now go do as I asked," Myka said, patting her shoulder and giving her a little nudge to stand up.

"Will you help me?" Helena asked before she had time to really think about it.

Myka wished. But she shook her head with a little smile, leaning forward to whisper into Helena's ear. "I think that would be... inappropriate."

Helena's knees threatened to buckle on her, and her eyelids fluttered. "Please, Mummy?" she breathed, closing her eyes.

It would have been so easy to give in. But she wouldn't. She turned Helena around and gave her a firm swat, making the girl jump, and bringing a gorgeous rosy tint to embarrassed cheeks. "March your bottom into your bedroom and put your pajamas on, young lady."

"Why won't you help me?" Helena pressed, reluctant to leave Myka's side for reasons she didn't even want to consider.

"I don't want to hear another word out of your mouth until you're in your pajamas," Myka said gently, but firmly.

"But I--"

"Helena," Myka scolded with a frown, taking the girl's arm and maneuvering her across her lap. She had the dress up and panties down within a few seconds, and her hand fell sharply onto Helena's bare bottom.

Tears welled instantly in Helena's wide eyes, and she found it hard to breathe. She didn't like this, at all. But why didn't she? She loved spankings. She could sometimes come just from a spanking, they turned her on so much. Now though, she didn't want it. She didn't want to be in trouble, that's what it was. Okay. At least that made sense. "I'm sorry... stop, I'm sorry Mummy, please," she begged, tears sliding down her cheeks. "I just wanted to stay close to you, I'll be a good girl, I promise..."

Myka had to admit she was a little shocked to hear all that, and she gave Helena one more swat before tugging her panties back into place and lowering her dress. "I'm not going to disappear while you're getting dressed," she promised. "You need to do as you're told, and then you may stay close to me for the rest of the evening. If you don't do as you're told, I'll put you to bed with a sore bottom."

"I'm sorry," Helena sniffled, a few fresh tears falling, and she wiped them away with the heel of her hand. "I'll do as I'm told, I will."

"All right, go on then," Myka said softly, letting Helena off her lap and watching the girl walk quickly to her bedroom.

After that, Helena was quiet and subdued while they watched another movie, and when it was over, she moved herself right into Myka's lap. "Don't go," she asked, her voice barely audible over the end credits. "I know it's late, and that probably means you'll go, but please don't."

"I'm sorry, I have to," Myka said, her heart aching for Helena, for how lonely the other girl obviously was.

Don't be needy, don't be needy, Helena told herself. And don't cry. Then she won't even be interested in you as a girlfriend, let alone be willing to be your mother again sometime. "It's okay, I understand. Thank you, for coming in the first place."

"See you on Monday?" Myka asked, trying to keep the mood light.

"If you're lucky," Helena snarked, jumping off the couch with a little cackle and running from Myka, just in case she decided to start smacking. She opened the front door for her... friend?... and waited for her to catch up.

"Goodnight," Myka said, shaking her head in exasperated amusement as she slipped out the open door.

"Goodnight," Helena echoed, and watched until Myka was out of sight before she closed and locked the door. She leaned her back against it for a few minutes, just breathing, and then went to her room. With a sheepish grin she took her vibrator from the top drawer of her bureau and slipped in to bed.

--

Saturday afternoon. Saturday afternoon, on a picnic in the park with her siblings, and when they went off to play, she thought of Helena. She closed her eyes to ward off the images, but naturally, that just made it worse. Helena bent over the bondage table with her pants down; Helena standing on the cross, the back of her dress open; Helena across her lap, bottom bare, squirming while she--

"Myka?"

She was startled out of her musings and opened her eyes like a shot, hoping Jordan and Kaylen wouldn't notice her flush. "Yes, babies?"

"Can we go home now?" Kaylen asked, glancing around nervously, her delicate fingers toying with the hem of her blouse.

"What? Why?"

"I just want to go home..."

Jordan crossed his arms over his chest and huffed. "THAT kid was making fun of her." He nodded toward one of the boys on the playground.

"Jordan!" Kaylen whined, tears in her eyes.

"I never promised not to tell," Jordan insisted. "Can I kick him, Myka?"

"Yes," Myka said, her eyes narrowing, and she watched as her little brother ran over and kicked the bigger boy right in the shin. Then she watched as the boy howled in pain and raised his arm, his hand balled into a fist, and she was between him and Jordan in a split second. "Don't you even think about it, young man. My sister may be sick, but she is a sweet, beautiful little girl, and you're just a bully. Leave my kids alone."

"Get bent, lady, you're a bitch," the kid said, somewhere between outraged and curious.

"Yes, and that means I have magical powers that you could only dream about," Myka said in a low, hissing voice. "Do you really want to piss off the bitch?"

His eyes went slightly wide, and when she yelled 'boo!' in his face, he took off running.

Kaylen was laughing by then, and Jordan was cheering on his biggest sister, but they both quieted when the boy's mother approached.

"What did you say to my son?" she demanded.

"Your son? The one who was making fun of my sister? Is that the son you mean?" Myka asked.

"He was... he was doing what?" the woman asked, looking stricken, and Myka could practically see the color start to drain from her face.

"Teasing my sister because she's sick," Myka repeated. "Not to mention calling me a bitch."

Obviously flustered, the woman looked over her shoulder at her son, then back to Myka. "His father is temporarily in a wheelchair with a broken leg and can't play baseball with him anymore, but I realize that's no excuse and I'm terribly sorry," she apologized, glancing at Kaylen. "And the bitch thing, I don't know where that came from, I didn't raise him like that... you don't seem like a bitch at all, just the opposite in fact, and if I wasn't married, I-- I'm walking away now, before I die of embarrassment."

Jaw twitching with amusement, Myka turned to her siblings and grinned. "You guys ready to go home now?"

"Did that lady just hit on you?" Jordan asked, taking Myka's hand as they crossed the parking lot.

"You're a little young to know that term," Myka said, raising an eyebrow. "But yes, yes she did."

--

After depositing Jordan and Kaylen with the morons, Myka couldn't get Helena off her mind, so she took a chance and caught the bus to Mrs. Wells's shop, hoping that Helena might be there. She found the dark-haired girl seated on the checkout counter, math book open in her lap. "Studying for Monday?" she asked, and grinned with satisfaction as Helena jumped and fell from the counter, stumbling into her.

"Myka, don't DO that!" Helena complained, picking her book up from the floor and dropping it on the counter, then smoothing down her dress.

"I didn't know you were so easily startled," Myka replied.

"Well I am. Especially when I didn't expect to see you today. If I'd known you were coming, I would have been looking out for you." She paused, and then added a bit haughtily, "and I would have made you some coffee, or hot chocolate, or something."

Myka's grin only widened at hearing that, and she stepped closer. "I'm in the mood to flex my muscles. Are you interested?"

Helena's entire body tingled and flushed, and she smoothed down her already-smooth sundress again. "I am always interested in such a thing, you know that."

Now Myka closed the distance between them, gently grabbing Helena by the upper arm, making sure she was paying attention. Her voice was low and she spoke close to the girl's ear. "I want to inflict a lot of pain today. Fetch me a cane and two pairs of steel cuffs."

Helena's knees nearly gave out and her skin burned where Myka gripped her arm. Her lashes fluttered, eyes sparkling as she quickly nodded in agreement and submission, waiting to be released. Once she was, she walked purposefully to the appropriate rack and chose a flawless rattan cane, then moved to the restraints and chose two pairs of Smith and Wessons. Her hands shook as she held the items out, her head bowed, and Myka took them.

"Go downstairs."

She swallowed hard against the words that wanted to come out, and lost the battle anyway. "Yes Ma'am," she whispered in a raspy voice, and hurried down the stairs.

Myka watched her go, one eyebrow slowly lifting, a subtle spark igniting somewhere in her body. She counted to fifty before following, and came to a stop roughly ten feet from Helena. "Take your dress off."

Helena's eyes went wide, but her hands immediately went to work getting the dress unzipped, and she let it fall from her shoulders, pooling on the floor at her feet. She didn't lift her head. She wasn't sure what she would do if she didn't see approval in Myka's eyes. She had never been this naked in front of the other girl, this exposed. What if her breasts weren't big enough, or what if they were too big? What if her stomach didn't have enough muscles, or wasn't flat enough, or her hips were--

"Do you not know how to stand properly, or are you simply choosing not to do so?"

Myka's sharp voice pulled her from her deprecating self-analysis, and she slowly straightened, lifting her head but keeping her eyes downcast, and clasping her hands behind her back. "Neither. I just didn't know you wanted me to stand properly," she said.

"I always want you to do your best. To do the most you know how to do," Myka informed her, starting to circle her like a predator.

She'd be lying if she said she wasn't nervous. She didn't want to mess this up. "Okay."

"Okay?" Myka echoed, the answer turned into a question. "Is that the best you know how to answer?"

Helena bit her lip, digging her fingernails into her palms behind her back. "No, Ma'am, it isn't."

"I didn't think so. Step out of your dress."

Breathing picking up speed, Helena obeyed, stepping carefully forward, extricating both feet from the pile of fabric. She stood now in a white lace bra with matching panties, sheer white stockings, and red patent-leather shoes that had matched her dress.

Myka closed the distance between them and ran a single fingertip down the front of Helena's chest, between her breasts, and stopped at her belly button, feeling the muscles quiver beneath her touch. "Do you know what I see?" she whispered.

Helena shook her head, fighting to keep her eyes open. "No, Ma'am."

Myka leaned in, lips brushing Helena's ear, and paused for a split second before she breathed, "perfection."

Helena held in her gasp, biting down hard on her lip to stay quiet. She wanted to ask if Myka was looking at her. How could she possibly be considered perfect?

"Helena," the brunette scolded, clicking her tongue and shaking her head. "I know what you're thinking, and I'll have you know it's not wise to question my judgment."

"No, Ma'am, of course not," Helena breathed.

Myka's fingers lifted and threaded tightly into waves of dark hair. "This... is perfect." She squeezed. Then slowly unwound her fingers, letting them glide across porcelain skin, her thumb brushing back and forth over Helena's glossy red lips. "These... perfect." She pushed her thumb briefly into Helena's mouth, then continued her exploration downward. She didn't even hesitate before covering the girl's breasts with her hands. "Perfect," she crooned, watching the play of emotions across Helena's face.

Helena couldn't stifle her gasp as she felt hands close over her breasts, and the gasp turned to a moan when the hands disappeared just as quickly.

"Your skin, your hips, your thighs," Myka continued, running the backs of her hands along each body part as she named it. "Perfect."

Helena shivered, Myka's touch exciting her and making her nerves tingle. She wanted to beg for more, but that would be untoward and unladylike, and it would also be misbehaving, because Myka had not asked her to speak.

Myka slid her hands around to Helena's backside and grabbed two handfuls, digging her fingertips in. "Perfect," she purred. "Your ass is perfect. And about to be striped and sore and welted. Have you ever been caned before?"

The ache between her legs only grew at the promise. "Once, Ma'am," she answered honestly.

"Was it done well?"

"Not as well as what I've felt from you, Ma'am." Again, honestly.

Myka smiled gently, bringing one hand to stroke Helena's hair. "I'm going to hurt you, Helena. Are you truly prepared for that?"

"Yes, Ma'am. Please." The longing in her voice was almost alarming, but she knew Myka wouldn't tease her. Wouldn't lead her on, make her want something, and then deny her. So it was okay to show her need.

"Bend over the table."

She walked to the bondage table, very aware of her level of nakedness, and bent over, shivering as the cold, smooth leather touched her bare stomach. She squirmed for a moment, until the initial chill subsided, and then settled, resting her cheek on folded hands.

Myka stood in front of Helena, slipping one cuff around a delicate wrist, then running the other through the bars, using the chain to anchor Helena's hands to the table. She still had about a six-inch range of motion once the second cuff was secured, but she couldn't stand up, and that's all Myka wanted.

The other pair of cuffs she used on Helena's ankles in the same fashion, so the girl wouldn't be able to inadvertently kick her in a fit of pain.

Helena performed the obligatory test of her bonds, and then lay still.

Myka covered Helena's body with her own, speaking softly into her ear. "Will I need to gag you?"

Helena wondered how quiet she could be, but in the end, decided she could do it. "No, Ma'am."

"I meant it when I said I'm going to hurt you," Myka continued. "And afterward, I'm going to take such good care of you that the pain won't matter."

Her entire body warming at the gentle promise, Helena nodded her head in understanding.

"I'm going to begin now." And as she stood up, she curled her fingers into Helena's panties and slid them down to bare her bottom.

Helena was already fading in and out of coherent thought, getting lost in the feel, the smell, the sound, the taste of everything. She had just enough give on her chains to fold her hands beneath her head, so she did. Her eyes closed when she felt the cane on her backside, rubbing gently over her skin, getting her used to its presence. She also knew Myka was making sure the rattan was smooth, with no nicks or uneven seams that would break her skin. It was surreal, really, how much she could trust that Myka knew what she was doing. She could relax and fully immerse herself in the experience, without having to worry about managing the technicalities herself.

When the cane lifted, she prepared herself, forcing her muscles slack when the instinct was to tense up. And when the first lash landed across the middle of her bottom, there was that split second of suspended reality, as if it weren't going to hurt at all, and then... searing pain, radiating outward from the point of impact, that made her clench her fists and her teeth. Her last partner had obviously been pulling punches.

Myka delivered another expert stroke, just below the first, then set the cane on the table and grabbed Helena's hips, squeezing firmly, giving her an anchor to rely on.

Helena cried out, tears welling in her eyes, her head thrown back, and then Myka's hands were on her, holding her down, putting pressure on her stomach to ground her, and the pain was easier to get through. It didn't hurt any less, but it was easier to get through.

Once the girl had calmed, Myka stroked her back once and then released her, picking up the cane again and moving back into position. Three strokes in a row striped perfect white thighs with angry purple welts, and she waited until Helena screamed before overlaying them with three more. She watched the girl struggle, pull at her bonds, try to stand up, and break into sobs. One hand on Helena's lower back let her know Myka was still there, wasn't going anywhere, but that it wasn't done.

Helena wasn't sure she could take more. She loved it, she loved it so much it scared her sometimes, but she had never felt pain like this. It was like her skin had been cut, then exposed to fire, everywhere the cane touched her. She was wet, she was so wet, but she hurt so badly she was clammy and sweating, and she wanted Myka to ground her again. Needed Myka to ground her again, but at the moment she didn't have the words or the ability to speak them.

Myka knew she was reaching Helena's pain threshhold. She stroked her fingers through the mess of dark hair at the base of Helena's neck, not surprised when they came away dripping with sweat. She had to be almost done, she couldn't draw this out any longer. So she pulled away slightly, just enough to deliver two last powerful strokes, striping the lower part of Helena's buttocks, and then discarded the cane, covering Helena's body with her own.

Helena was completely lost, gasping for breath and sobbing, her hands dotted with salty tears. She vaguely felt Myka's body atop her own, and took comfort in that, allowing herself to start to come back down.

Neither girl spoke for quite awhile; Myka a force to be reckoned with, remaining there for Helena as long as it took, and Helena, her own force of nature, slowly finding her way back to calm. "I'm sorry," she finally said, embarrassed by her reaction to the pain, now that she wasn't enveloped in it.

"No," Myka soothed her, bringing a hand up to stroke tears from her face. "You were perfect."

"What?" Helena managed to ask, her voice shaking along with her body.

"Perfect," Myka repeated. "I pushed you, and you pushed back perfectly. And even if you hadn't, I never want to hear an apology for an honest reaction."

Helena wasn't sure what to say to that, so she just whispered, "oh."

After a few more minutes just spent in silence, Myka slid down and unlocked the cuffs around Helena's ankles, then moved around to the other side of the table, keeping one hand on Helena as she did, never losing contact. "I'm going to unlock your wrists, but I don't want you to try to stand, okay?"

Helena nodded, and as her hands were released from the cuffs, she simply kept them where they were, folded beneath her cheek.

Myka slid back around and removed Helena's panties entirely, putting them into her pocket. "I don't think you want these on right now, do you?" she asked as an afterthought.

Helena shivered and shook her head slightly. No, she did not want to be wearing anything at the moment. "It's hot," she said, her voice dry and scratchy. "It's hot in here, isn't it?"

"It's your body's reaction to the pain," Myka explained, bending down to pick up Helena's dress, glad it wasn't one of her heavier, fancier ones - she wouldn't have been able to get the girl into it. It wasn't even black, to her surprise. It was a red and white sundress with spaghetti straps, and she slid it over Helena's head, carefully maneuvering the girl to get it on semi-properly. It wasn't perfect, but it covered what needed to be covered.

Helena lay still and did what she could to help Myka dress her, which wasn't much. She was still sweaty and shaky, and so thirsty. "What now?" she rasped.

"Now we go to your place and I take care of you."

As the adrenaline continued to wear off, Helena felt exhaustion trying to overtake her. "Okay," she murmured, and didn't even try to resist as Myka picked her up and headed for the stairs. In fact, she put her arms around Myka's neck, rested her head on the brunette's shoulder, and after a brief stop at the water cooler for a drink, she let herself fall asleep.

Myka got them up the stairs and looked around for Helena's backpack. She spied it behind the counter and looked hopefully at Lark, who snickered and picked it up, slinging it over her shoulder for her.

"Thanks," she mouthed, not wanting to wake Helena, and carried the sleeping girl out of the shop, beginning the short walk to her classmate's house.

--

After locating the house keys in Helena's backpack, Myka let them in and locked up behind them, then moved directly to Helena's room and laid the girl on her stomach on the bed.

Helena stirred, mumbling something and then whimpering in pain as she woke up, immediately looking around for Myka, who was right there, sitting on the bed beside her.

"I'm going to get you some water, you need to drink some more," Myka said, glad she didn't get a protest. She went to the kitchen and returned with a large glass of water, sitting back down. "Roll onto your side and prop up a little... good... now drink..." She held the cup to Helena's lips and tilted it, slowly increasing the angle until she could see the muscles working as Helena swallowed.

"It's still so hot," the girl whispered.

"I know. Let's get you undressed now." Myka set down the empty glass and worked Helena's dress up, smiling as the girl pushed onto her elbows to help, then put her arms above her head so Myka could slide it the rest of the way off. Her bra followed, then her fancy shoes and ruffled socks, and she was naked. "That better?"

"A little bit," Helena murmured, settling back down. "Could I have more water? Please?"

"Of course," Myka said, stroking her hair once and then moving to refill the water glass.

After she'd helped Helena drink the second glass, she went to the bathroom for a washcloth, then filled a bowl with cool water in the kitchen before returning to Helena's side. "How you doing?" she asked gently, dipping the washcloth into the water and wringing it out.

"Sweaty," Helena answered with a tiny smile. "Thank you, for being here..."

"I wouldn't play with you if I wasn't going to take care of you afterward," Myka smiled back, moving Helena's hair out of the way and drawing the wet cloth across the back of her neck.

Helena moaned in pleasure, the coolness felt so good on her overheated skin. And Myka was so tender with her, it made her tingle all over.

"I thought this might do the trick," Myka chuckled, repeating the process for the girl's back and shoulders. When she got to the angry purple-red welts, she simply laid the washcloth over them and let it rest for a moment to soothe the area, biting her lip at Helena's hiss of surprise, and likely a bit of pain.

When the cloth touched her backside, she couldn't help the sharp intake of breath, and squeezed her eyes shut, waiting for the searing pain, but it was only a little prick, then it felt nice and she relaxed.

Myka let the cloth sit for a minute or two, then gingerly picked it up and continued her process, on Helena's arms, legs, and then lastly her face.

"That felt SO good," Helena breathed after Myka had finished. "Amazing, really. You're amazing. Thank you for--"

"No more thanks," Myka said with a grin. "I have just as many for you. It's my turn." She put the cloth in the bowl and set it next to the empty water glass, then slid onto her side facing Helena, who was watching her intently. "Thank you for trusting me. Thank you for offering your body to me and allowing me to mark it. And thank you for standing up for me to your sil-- to your friends." She stopped short of calling them 'silly little friends', for several reasons, all of which would make her look bad.

"I wouldn't play with you if I wasn't willing to defend you to my silly friends," Helena whispered, her sentiment sincere but a smirk on her face.

Myka laughed and was struck with the urge to be close. She wasn't sure how far Helena wanted to go, though, so she settled for stroking the hair back from the girl's face. "I think we're evenly matched in the wit department," she finally said.

Helena leaned into the touch, rubbing her cheek against Myka's hand. "I like being with you," she said.

"You mean you like being beaten," Myka corrected her.

"The two aren't mutually exclusive," Helena said somberly, turning her face to kiss Myka's palm. "Yes, I do like being beaten. Especially by you, who knows what she's doing. But I also like THIS. What we're doing now. And I like battling wits with you."

Helena's words made Myka's stomach flutter... and that was not a common experience for the brunette. She did not get nervous, not for tests and certainly not for a girl. But then again, she'd never been in this situation with a girl before. "I like to battle wits with you too. You're the only one who poses a challenge at all."

"What happened to 'evenly matched'?"

Myka smiled and pulled her hand away from Helena's mouth, because every time the other girl spoke now, it sent little sparks straight through her palm and up her arm, tingling everywhere. "I can be arrogant sometimes," she answered Helena finally. "We ARE evenly matched."

"How long can you stay?" Helena suddenly asked. She was starting to get comfortable and wanted to prepare herself if Myka was leaving soon.

"All day and all night," Myka replied, deciding in the spur of the moment, and the look on Helena's face made it worth the snap decision.

That piece of knowledge was the world to Helena right then. Like knowing Myka would be there turned a knob that made her feel safe, and comfortable, and allowed her to acknowledge how sleepy she was. "So if I sleep, you'll be here when I wake up?" she asked with a yawn.

"Yes," Myka replied simply. "And I think you should. Sleep, that is."

Helena didn't argue. "Okay," she mumbled, closing her eyes and letting herself drift off.

Chapter Text

Chapter Two

Helena wasn't sure how long she'd slept, but when she woke up, Myka was right there, in bed beside her, propped up on some pillows reading a book. She wore reading glasses that Helena found absolutely tantalizing, and she intended to sit up and say so... but as soon as she started to push up onto her arms, her backside protested and she dropped back down with a hiss of pain.

Myka quickly set her book down and took off her glasses, facing Helena, a hand on her shoulder. "Are you all right?"

"I'm fine. May I have some water, please?"

"Of course," Myka nodded, picking up the girl's water glass and carefully holding it to her lips.

Helena drank thirstily, then wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. "The sweaty heat is finally gone," she said with a grin.

"I love your accent," Myka blurted out of nowhere.

Helena's grin widened and turned cheeky. "At least there's something about me worth loving," she said, intending for it to be a joke, but the look on Myka's face let her know it wasn't funny.

"Hey," Myka replied with a frown, reaching over to grasp Helena's jaw, gently but firmly. "If I hadn't just caned you, you'd be across my lap right now for that. I don't ever want to hear you say something like that about yourself ever again, do you understand me?"

Helena gave a sad sort of shrug and nodded.

"Helena Wells, do you understand me?" Myka asked more sternly, maintaining her grip on Helena's chin.

Helena gasped softly and nodded again, the best she could within Myka's grasp. "Yes, Ma'am," she whispered.

Myka's eyes nearly rolled back in her head, a surge of pure heat making its way through her arteries at that appellation. Well, that appellation coming from that girl, specifically. She did her best to hide the depth of her reaction, and released Helena's chin. "Good." She kissed the other girl's cheek, right on the bone beneath her left eye, trying not to notice how good Helena's skin tasted. Fresh and sweet and with a trace of salt from her earlier tears. She didn't let her lips linger, no matter how much she wanted to. She knew Helena only really wanted one thing from her, so she didn't want to get too invested, emotionally. Except that she already was.

Helena closed her eyes at the feel of Myka's silky lips on her cheek, and yet again she wished the other girl would deviate from her tightly-woven ethics, or standards, or whatever stringency she held herself to. It's like she was the most pious... dominatrix in the world. "You know you're the only person who's ever gotten that word out of me," she suddenly confessed.

"Since you can't possibly have never said yes to anyone, I assume you mean Ma'am?"

"Mhmm."

"Well I never asked it of you, so what makes me so lucky?" Myka couldn't help asking.

"You earned my respect, and you just -- I don't even know how to put you into words, Myka. You affect me so much. I think about you constantly, and not just about you spanking me, so don't think that's all it is. I think about everything about you. I want to be around you all the time. And in those times few and far between where you get really dominant with me, I want to please you and I think you deserve to hear that word from my mouth." After a minute of silence just spent looking curiously at each other, she asked almost shyly, "do you like it? Is it okay for me to call you that sometimes?"

Myka resisted the urge to kiss her. "I do like it," she said, understating just how much she liked it.

"Sometimes you're hard to read," Helena said, resting her head on her folded arms, facing Myka.

"Only sometimes? I'll have to work harder at it then," Myka said, obviously only pretending to be serious.

Helena laughed, then closed her eyes again. "I'm glad you like it," she then said quietly. "Bloody hell, my ass hurts."

Myka couldn't help the snort of laughter at the sudden subject change and crass exclamation. "I would apologize, but I'm not sorry..."

Now Helena laughed. "You bitch," she teased.

"Mmm, watch it. Your face is unmarked," Myka purred, reaching over to lightly pat Helena's cheek.

Emboldened at the threat, Helena grabbed Myka's wrist and turned her head to press her lips into Myka's palm. "Please," she murmured into the kiss.

"Please what, slap your face?" Myka asked, unsure what exactly was being requested of her, but the kiss sent shivers down her spine.

"No," Helena said softly, kissing Myka's palm again when it wasn't pulled away from her. "I mean, you're the top, you can slap my face if you like, but that's not what I was begging for..." She dropped her voice even lower at the word 'begging'.

"Before we started this dance we're doing, I never would have pictured you begging for anything," Myka replied, trying to decide whether she wanted to hear what Helena was begging for.

"Is that what we're doing? Dancing?" Helena asked, kissing Myka's palm yet again, not quite daring to move her lips toward the other girl's wrist.

"What would you call it? I'd like to think it's more serious than a game."

"It's not a game," Helena agreed quickly. "I suppose a dance fits." She kissed Myka's palm again and then boldly let her tongue out to draw a little circle.

"Fuck!" Myka hissed, digging her fingernails into the side of Helena's cheek. The girl was flirting with her and she couldn't blame it on subspace.

Helena would have apologized embarrassedly but for the fact that Myka had chosen to grab her face instead of pulling away. She viewed that as permission to continue and drew another circle.

Myka's thighs clenched and she pinned Helena with a hungry stare. "If you continue doing that, I won't be held responsible for my actions, do you understand?" Her words were slow and pointed.

"Finally," Helena answered cheekily, then gasped as Myka's fingernails lightly pierced the skin of her cheek.

"I'm dead serious," Myka scolded, loosening her grip when she saw little droplets of blood start to form.

"I'm sorry," Helena breathed, her eyelashes fluttering, heat coursing through her. "I understand. I just didn't think you wanted me that way, and... and I've wanted you for a while, and I just--"

"You didn't think I wanted you that way?" Myka finally pulled her hand out of Helena's grip, using her thumb to carefully dab away the blood on the other girl's cheek. "I haven't refrained out of a lack of desire, Helena. You honestly don't know the effect you have on me?"

Helena closed her eyes at the gentle fussing over the tiny wounds. "I think you're very good at hiding it," she observed.

"When I was paddling you over the table and you started touching yourself, I wanted my tongue in your cunt," Myka confessed, unmindful of her crass language.

"Bloody hell," Helena practically moaned, turning her face away from Myka to hide her blush. "I didn't get quite that lucky in my fantasy, but I wished you were touching me," she finally added. "Ever since that first day in my mum's shop, I think about you every time I touch myself."

"Every time?" Myka asked, a smirk making its way onto her lips.

"Yes," Helena replied.

"Look at me, Helena," the brunette commanded, a tender undercurrent sliding beneath the words.

Helena was still slightly embarrassed, but didn't want to find out the chastisement for disobeying a direct order. She turned her head and looked at the other girl.

"I've kept things strictly business out of a sense of decorum and propriety, and not knowing what exactly you wanted from me. I wasn't about to take advantage of you in a moment of heightened intensity. I wanted to, but I didn't. And I want to now, but I can't. When I fuck you for the first time, I want you to remember it forever, and not because it hurt your ass so badly you cried yourself to sleep. When I fuck you, I need to be able to do whatever I want without worrying about ruining the mood with too much pain. Understand?"

Helena groaned but knew she was right. If she even rolled onto her back, she'd start crying as soon as her ass touched the sheets. "I understand," she gave a vocal answer despite not wanting to agree.

"But just to be clear, I have your consent for future reference?"

"You have more than my consent," Helena whispered.

"Just your consent is enough for now," Myka said with a grin. "But I understand what you're saying and I appreciate that fact, I promise you."

Chapter Text

"How on Earth am I going to sit for classes on Monday?" Helena asked after they both sat for awhile in comfortable silence.

"Too bad you can't just kneel beside my desk," Myka teased.

Helena's face flushed and she closed her eyes, allowing herself that brief fantasy. "If only," she breathed.

Myka had been joking but Helena's response made her groan. "Don't even think about it. I'll get up and leave class."

"You?" Helena gasped. "Leave class before it's over? Never."

"I swear on my straight As that I'll fake sick and go to the nurse if you even look like you're about to kneel anywhere near me."

"That's no fun at all, and I've never heard anyone swear on their grades before in my life."

Myka shot out of her seat when she heard the front door open and scrambled to try to get the sheet out from under Helena to cover her.

"Don't bother, it's just my mum," Helena waved her hand dismissively. "I don't want anything touching my ass even more than I care if she sees it."

"But she'll kill me!" Myka gasped, horrified.

"You know it's her shop, right?" Helena asked, amused.

"Yes but you're her daughter and and and your ass is like--" Myka gestured wildly, not even sure how to describe the state of Helena's backside.

Mrs. Wells knocked on the door and opened it without waiting for an answer, her eyes going a bit wide at the state of her daughter and the wildly panicking girl standing beside the bed. "Oh," she said, trying to hide a smirk. "You must be the one who apparently caned my daughter?"

"I'm so sorry," Myka said in a rush. "I should get going..."

"Mum!" Helena protested. "Get out!"

"Do I at least get the name of this siren calling you into the depths?"

Blushing to the roots of her hair, Myka tried to stop pacing long enough to introduce herself. "Myka Bering," she miraculously managed to say.

"Seriously Mummy, please get out," Helena whined.

"Myka, it's lovely to meet you," Mrs. Wells said with a chuckle and mercifully backed out of the room, closing the door behind her.

"Bloody hell!" Helena screamed after her. "I hate you!"

"I should go," Myka said again, embarrassment seeping all the way into her bones.

That's what Helena had been afraid of, and she turned her head away, trying valiantly not to cry. "I understand."

Confused at Helena's reaction, Myka sat on the bed and laid a hand on her shoulder. "Do you not want me to go? I figured after that you'd be gunning for me to leave."

"I never want you to go," Helena whispered.

"Okay," Myka said softly. "I'll stay."

Helena sniffed and turned her head, a small smile breaking through. "Really?"

Myka was struck by the volumes of vulnerability radiating off of her classmate. "Really," she promised, moving her hand to rub Helena's back.

"Thank you," Helena said happily, her eyes drifting closed as she allowed herself to relax and appreciate the gentle comfort.

Myka settled down onto the bed and reached for her book and her glasses. "Would you like me to read to you?" she asked.

"Yes, please," Helena replied.

"You don't even want to know what I'm reading?"

"No," Helena said. "It doesn't matter what it is, I love listening to your voice."

"Even if I'm reading War and Peace?" Myka chuckled.

"Even so."

Myka couldn't help leaning over to kiss Helena's temple before she settled again and began to read.

--

Still beaming from the fact that Myka had spent the night in her bed on Saturday, even if the other girl had been under the sheet and her on top of it, and the fact that they had finally exchanged cell phone numbers, Helena could barely sit through classes while she waited for science to roll around. Partly because it was still quite uncomfortable to sit, though it was doable, but mostly because she couldn't wait to see Myka. She had never reacted so strongly to another person before, and she found the moments without her classmate hard to tolerate.

When the bell rung signaling the end of English, she practically jumped out of her seat, shrugged on her backpack and didn't bother stopping at her locker to drop off her English book. She went straight to science, but of course Myka was somehow still there before her. She skipped into the room and slid into the desk beside Myka's, as per usual, and leaned over as far as she could without falling.

Myka smirked to herself, not having to turn her head to know what avalanche that was. But she did turn her head, and snuck a quick kiss to Helena's cheek, then faced forward again and pretended she'd done nothing.

Helena gasped, a hand flying to her cheek as she blushed bright red and tried to think of something clever to say. "Hi," she finally said, thinking of nothing.

Myka pretended to just notice her. "Oh! Hi," she said cheekily.

"You-- you don't mind if anyone saw that?" Helena asked, trying to keep the hopefulness out of her voice and her expression.

"Do you think I would have done it if I minded?" Myka asked, turning towards her and raising an eyebrow.

Helena squirmed under the scrutiny and bit her lip. "I suppose not..."

Suddenly Myka was unsure. "Do you mind?" she asked, hoping she hadn't just royally fucked things up.

"No!" Helena said, too quickly, and shook her head. "No," she said again more calmly. "I don't mind." She leaned close again and lowered her voice so she wouldn't be overheard. "I wouldn't mind kneeling at your feet for the entire class period, remember?"

Myka groaned, catching the attention of the teacher.

"Miss Bering?"

"Sorry! I hit my knee on the desk," Myka lied smoothly.

"Are you all right?"

"I'm fine, thank you."

When the teacher went back to the lesson, Myka hissed quietly at Helena, "you're going to get it."

"I'm so frightened," Helena whispered, a shiver of not-fear running through her.

Myka chose not to respond.

--

When class was over, Helena tried to skirt trouble by rushing out the door, but Myka grabbed her by the elbow and dragged her into the hallway. "What would you do if I spanked you right here?" she asked into Helena's ear.

"Come in my panties," Helena gasped without missing a beat.

Myka groaned again. "Really? If I made you stand up against the lockers and bend over so I could flip up your skirt, and spanked you in front of all our classmates, you'd like that?"

"Yes... no... I don't know," Helena said, starting to get flustered by Myka's proximity and the things she was saying, and the firm hold on her elbow. "Maybe not our classmates, but if we were somewhere else, yes," she finally said on an exhale. "In front of strangers."

Myka was going to need some time to process that or her brain would explode, so she filed it away and focused on more pressing matters. "Well in that case, you'd better just go to class, Miss Wells."

"But--"

"You made me groan out loud in the middle of science," Myka said sharply. "Go to class."

Helena fluttered her eyelashes up at Myka and pouted, leaning up to quickly kiss her cheek and whisper in her ear, "yes Ma'am."

"Behave," Myka called after her retreating form, and received Helena's middle finger over the girl's shoulder for her trouble. She couldn't help laughing.

--

Their Monday tutoring session at the library went very well, and Myka found herself wanting to ask Helena out for a milkshake or something to celebrate, but the insecure part of her wouldn't let her take that risk. What if Helena said no? She didn't think that would be the case, but she had spent far too long by herself and now that she had something so real, she didn't want to risk messing it up. She thought Helena might like her for more than just what she was capable of, but on the offchance that the girl really did just want a strictly play-based relationship, she convinced herself she had to be careful. Sex was one thing, and Helena obviously wanted that, but milkshakes and movies were something else entirely.

She almost told her insecurities to go fuck themselves when she saw the way Helena was beaming at her accomplishments. "You did amazing," she said instead. "Really amazing."

"Thank you," Helena said, enjoying how it felt to be proud of herself. "You're an excellent teacher."

--

When she was about to turn off the light and get in bed later that night, Myka's cell phone rang. Her stomach did flips as she looked at the caller ID and saw Helena's name flashing on her screen. She hit the answer button before she got stuck just staring and risked missing the call. "Hey," she said casually, feeling anything but.

"Hello yourself," Helena said with a grin. "How are you doing this evening?"

"I was just about to get in bed."

"I hope to masturbate; it's not even nine o'clock, Myka!"

Myka spluttered and coughed and ran a hand over her face, then flopped onto her bed with a sigh. "It's not like I have a raging social calendar, as you so aptly put it the other day. And it's a Monday, it's not like I'm going to bed early on a Friday night or something."

"So I take it that means you were going to sleep, not to masturbate?"

"Helena Wells..."

"Yes, Miss Bering?"

"Behave."

"That's what you said earlier, and look what it got you."

"You're a handful, aren't you?"

"Are you complaining?"

"Of course not."

Helena was quiet for a minute, not sure if she was brave enough to forge ahead with the topic she wanted. "Myka?" she asked, her voice suddenly much smaller than before.

"Yes? Is everything okay?" Myka asked, sitting up, concern starting to wash over her. When there was no answer, she sat up straighter. "Helena?"

"I'm still here," Helena assured her.

"What's wrong?"

"Nothing's wrong, I just... I hate being apart from you, Myka," she finally confessed.

Myka's heart skipped a beat. "You miss my skills?" she forced herself to ask.

Helena knew that's what the other girl would think and that was part of the reason she didn't want to confess how she felt. "No, Myka, I miss you," she said softly.

Myka swallowed past the lump in her throat. "You miss the way I handle you?"

Helena wanted to get angry and shout, but she knew that was just Myka's insecurities bursting forth. "I miss the way you smile at me when you think I'm not looking," she whispered. "I miss the sound of your voice and the comfort of your touch. I miss you, Myka. When you kissed me in class today I thought maybe you liked me the way that I like you."

Tears welled in Myka's eyes, her pulse pounding in her ears. "What way is that?" she breathed, barely audible even to herself.

"You know what way that is," Helena insisted, not willing to be the only one vulnerable. "Was I wrong?"

Myka could do this. If she said yes, she would probably lose Helena, and she would be outright lying. "No," she said, her voice shaking.

"Thank fucking God," Helena said with an obvious sigh of relief, seeking to change the subject before they both drowned. "Now, on the subject of you wanting to spank me in front of people..."

Myka's tears turned to laughter and she was so grateful for Helena's wicked tongue at that moment. "If it's something you're interested in, maybe I can find us a party to go to."

Helena had always wanted to go but never been. "You'd take me?"

Myka grinned mischievously though Helena obviously couldn't see it through the phone. "Only if you wear my collar and leash."

There was a thud, then scrambling, and Myka realized with a snort of laughter that Helena had dropped the phone.

"I dropped the bloody phone," Helena said a moment later. "I was trying to breathe and my hands suddenly decided to stop bloody working."

"That's a lot of cursing, young lady," Myka teased. "Have you changed your mind about the party?"

Helena screwed up her courage and said confidently, "not a chance. If you think I'd blink about being bound to you by a collar and leash, think again, Miss Bering. The thought simply thrilled me to the point of incoherency."

"You might want to try accepting more graciously if you think I'm taking you anywhere," Myka scolded her.

Helena's breath caught and she moved onto her knees on the bed, wishing Myka were there with her. "I would be honored to wear your collar and leash, Ma'am," she said respectfully. "I'm on my knees on my bed to tell you so."

Myka's eyes threatened to roll back in her head, a sudden clenching low in her belly alerting her to dangerous territory. "Are you seriously?"

"I am."

"Fuck me," Myka swore, flopping backwards again, trying to get comfortable despite the now throbbing sensation between her legs.

"If only," Helena moaned softly. "I'd give anything."

"I like the thought of you on your knees for me," Myka confessed. "Even though I'm not there to see it."

Her phone beeped and she glanced at it, eyes going wide when she realized Helena had sent her a picture. Her classmate, on her knees on the bed, just like she'd said.

"Oh God."

"Do you like it?"

"Yes."

"Do you want another?"

Myka really shouldn't be going there. "Yes. On your hands and knees." Oh, she was fucked.

It was a little harder to get a good picture that way, but Helena did the best she could, and she didn't think Myka would mind if it wasn't perfect, because it did clearly show that she was on her hands and knees.

Myka groaned quietly when she saw the picture come through. "You're so beautiful," she whispered.

"I'm yours, Myka," Helena whispered back.

"Mine?" Myka breathed. "You're going to kill me."

"I wish you could come over right now," Helena sighed.

"Technically I can do whatever I want," Myka said before she thought better of it. "My parents don't give a shit."

"Does that mean you want to come over?"

"Yes, but I shouldn't."

"Why not?"

"Because I feel very out of control right now and I'm afraid I would break you."

Helena groaned, long and low, and laid on her back on the bed. "I'm unbreakable."

"If I put my hands on you right now, you'd shatter."

"A welcome fate if it means I get to feel you lose control."

"I have to go. I'll see you in science tomorrow, okay?"

Helena growled in frustration, holding in a Wells tantrum. "All right," she snapped.

Myka could practically see the pout through the phone. "Good night, Helena."

"Not exactly good, but it is a night," Helena pouted. "I'll see you tomorrow."

Myka hung up and lay breathing heavily for several long moments before she covered her face with her pillow to muffle her scream. There was no way she was going to sleep tonight.

She got up, got dressed, pulled her hair back and went for a run.

An hour later, after a hot shower, she was still no closer to sleep. She was much more in control of her emotions, but no closer to sleep.

With a sigh she got dressed again, brushed her teeth, and resigned herself to going to Helena's house.

--

Helena had cried a little and had a full-blown Wells tantrum after she hung up the phone, then flung herself on her bed with a notebook and started writing.

That was how Myka found her a little after midnight - she could see in Helena's bedroom window on her way to the front door. The girl looked amazing propped up on her elbows, knees bent, ankles crossed in the air.

When she got to the front door she texted Helena instead of knocking, in case her mother was home.

Helena was startled by the unexpected buzzing of her phone at... she squinted at the clock... twelve fourteen. She took it from her pocket and opened the message, heart leaping into her throat as she read the words.

I'm out front.

Heart beating rapidly, Helena checked her appearance in the mirror before padding out to the front door in her bare feet and pulling it open. "Hi," she said breathlessly.

"Hi," Myka said, shoving her hands in the pockets of her jeans to keep from grabbing the girl in the doorway.

"Come in," Helena allowed, moving out of the way, and closed and locked the door after Myka.

The first thing Myka noticed when they reached Helena's bedroom was what used to be a vase, in pieces on the floor against one wall. The flowers it had held lay listlessly a few feet away from the shattered porcelain. "What happened?"

Helena's sheepish expression would most likely answer the question.

Myka's jaw dropped. "You didn't get your way so you broke a vase?"

"To be fair, I didn't break it. I merely threw it and it happened to break."

"Get your ass to a broom and clean that up. It's dangerous to have lying around. Especially with you in bare feet."

Helena rolled her eyes and left the room, returning with a broom and dustpan. She dutifully swept up every piece, including the flowers, and left the room again.

When she returned, Myka stepped up to block her path and slid one hand around her ponytail to hold her still while she lightly slapped Helena's face with the other.

Helena gasped, stunned, and her demeanor went from cheeky to respectful in an instant.

Myka could feel the change, and it made her quiver with power. She kept tight control of that swell of power, however, and spoke in a quiet voice. "Do not roll your eyes at me, Helena Wells."

"I'm sorry," Helena said truthfully, reveling in the strong grip and the swift discipline she had received. "Myka, I'm sorry." She wanted nothing more than for Myka to soothe the sting of the well-deserved slap.

"It's incredibly disrespectful," Myka lectured, though she did flatten her palm against Helena's cheek and stroke the warm skin softly.

"I understand, I'm sorry," Helena said again, leaning into the touch.

Myka's hand loosened the grip on Helena's hair and combed through it instead. "Why did you say what you said on the phone?"

"I said many things on the phone," Helena said, not trying to be flip. "Which one are you asking about?"

"When I called you beautiful, you said you were mine. Why did you say that?"

"Don't you know why?" Helena asked, her own hands moving to rest on Myka's hips, seeking an anchor as she suddenly felt the need to be grounded.

"Maybe you like to fuck with my head," Myka offered with a shrug, her insecurities flaring hot.

Helena responded by dropping to her knees and placing her hands behind her back, eyes on the floor. "I said it because I feel it. Myka, please. Please. I'm yours."

Myka regarded her for several long seconds, and instead of answering she unbuttoned her jeans.

Helena's palms suddenly felt clammy, her blood thrumming through her veins. "God. Please," she begged, her voice breaking. She ached to grab Myka's pants and yank them down, but she kept her hands behind her back.

Myka waited another few minutes and lowered the zipper.

"Bloody fucking hell," Helena whispered.

"Watch your mouth," Myka reprimanded the kneeling girl.

"I'm sorry but are you really going to let me...?"

"Earn it," Myka hissed.

"How?" Helena asked desperately.

"Figure it out."

Helena avoided whining in favor of thinking. "Miss Bering," she finally said, looking up at Myka and biting her lip as if she were nervous. "Please let me show you how much I appreciate the extra help you've been giving me..."

Myka fisted the girl's ponytail, her nostrils flaring with the heat the girl's words sent through her. "We can't. You know I can't let you do that. Do you want me to get fired?"

Helena rubbed her hands up and down Myka's thighs. "I won't tell anyone, I swear it," she promised.

"I didn't help you so you'd trade sexual favors, you know. I helped you because your potential greatly outweighs your performance. So don't pretend you think you owe me this."

"You're right, Miss Bering," Helena said, blushing even though it was just a role she was playing. "It has nothing to do with the extra help. I just find you brilliant and gorgeous and so incredibly seductive that I can't help myself from wanting you. I want you so badly Miss Bering, please let me taste you..." Her hands gripped Myka's thighs now, fingertips digging in.

"No," Myka growled, taking a step back.

"Myka, please," Helena begged, dropping the role and shuffling forward on her knees, tears springing to her wide, dark eyes. "What do I have to do? I'll do anything."

"Get up," Myka demanded, her voice low and husky.

Helena got to her feet, a tear sliding down her cheek.

Myka leaned forward and caught the tear with her tongue, dragging the tip of it up Helena's cheek. She closed her eyes at the salty taste. "Your tears taste exquisite."

Helena gasped, her thighs quivering under the assault. She didn't know how to respond to what Myka said, so she kept quiet.

"Just so you know, I'm putting the teacher student roleplay into the 'things to do with Helena' category, but right now I want to be myself... and I want you to be yourself." She started to circle Helena as she spoke. "Your true self. And as always, I want you to be a good girl for me. The best you know how to be."

Helena breathed in slowly, straightening up and putting her hands behind her back. "Yes Ma'am."

Myka clenched her thighs against that staggering word and stopped in front of Helena to trail a finger from her throat to the v-neck of her pajama top.

"I wish I was wearing something sexier," Helena lamented, turning her eyes to the floor.

"Your pajamas are sexier than you know," Myka said, twisting the top button loose and lightly scratching the newly revealed inch of skin.

Helena was in a pair of pink flannel pajamas with long sleeves and pants. Her feet were bare and her hair was pulled into a ponytail - she'd been writing and had then planned to go to bed. A shiver ran through her at the gentle scratching.

Myka twisted another button free and repeated the same action, lightly scratching the skin she now had access to. She quickly darted her eyes lower to count how many buttons were left. Three. She did the same for each of them, feeling Helena trembling beneath her touch. "Do you remember when I told you you were perfect?"

Helena tried to breathe and nodded. "Yes Ma'am." Her voice came out like a wisp of its usual self.

Myka slid her hands under the parted material and nudged it off over Helena's shoulders, letting it fall to the floor at their feet. She watched Helena's eyes struggle not to follow its path.

Helena was having trouble focusing. Her entire being was concentrated on the burning left behind everywhere Myka touched her.

Myka ran one hand through Helena's ponytail. "This is perfect," she whispered, giving a soft tug. When Helena just moaned softly, she tugged harder. "Say thank you."

"Thank you," Helena forced out quickly, not used to being made to accept compliments.

Myka circled around behind her, palms sliding smoothly over her muscled shoulder blades and down her back. "This... is perfect."

Helena tried twice before she could swallow. "Thank you, Ma'am."

Coming back around in front of her, Myka let her hands crawl inward to cover Helena's breasts, noting the way the girl's nipples pressed firmly against her palms.

"Oh God Myka, please," Helena begged, arching into the touch, and Myka's hands were gone. She let out a startled whine.

"I told you to be a good girl," Myka said sharply. "You know that means you're to hold still until I ask you otherwise."

Helena moved instantly back into position, bowing her head. "Yes Ma'am, I'm sorry. I'll do better."

"You will?"

"Yes Myka, yes Ma'am, please, I'll be good, I promise."

"You won't move?"

Helena struggled to draw in a full breath. "No Ma'am."

"One chance," Myka said, holding up one finger, then covering Helena's breasts again, stroking with her palms and then her fingertips. "These are perfect."

"Thank you Ma'am," Helena whispered, her voice molten lava.

"Are these mine?" Myka asked, her body pulsing with pleasure, relishing the control Helena gave her. She didn't mean to ask the question, but she'd passed the point of no return so she went with it, giving Helena's nipples a light pinch.

"Yes, yes Ma'am, they are," Helena said, her thighs clenching to ward off the dripping wetness Myka's words and actions were causing. When the other girl pinched her nipples she couldn't help her vocal reaction, though she made sure not to move a muscle. "Jesus fucking Christ!"

Myka tried to suppress a smirk but failed, her lips quirking in amusement at the very strong reaction. She quickly slid her hand up to Helena's throat and squeezed, a slow, gentle pressure. "This is fucking perfect," she hissed, fingertips digging into the back of the girl's neck before she released her grip.

Helena's eyes slammed shut, a groan leaving her lips as her breathing was tempered, and when Myka released her her knees threatened to give out. "Thank you Ma'am," she said in a hoarse, scratchy voice.

Myka hooked one finger into the waistband of Helena's pajama pants and slowly started to tug them down.

Helena truly felt like she couldn't breathe, couldn't stand, couldn't see... but somehow she did all of those things, staring at Myka's finger as her pants were slowly stripped away.

"Step out of your pants."

Helena did.

"Look at me."

Helena did.

"I'm going to remove your underwear, Helena. Don't move."

"Yes Ma'am."

Helena trembled violently but stood still as Myka dragged her panties over her hips and thighs, then guided them to the floor.

Myka let the tips of her fingers curl around the tips of Helena's briefly as she stood back up. "You take my breath away," she whispered, heart thudding in her chest.

Helena's eyelids fluttered and her knees once again threatened to buckle. "Thank you Ma'am," she whispered back. "You take mine as well. And if I may be so bold as to say, you hold my heartbeat in the palm of your hand."

Myka was dangerously close to swooning for the first time in her life. "Step out of your panties," she said quietly, moving back a beat to make room for Helena to do so.

Helena stepped forward and stood naked before a fully-clothed Myka, feeling exposed and vulnerable and completely fucking wrecked for this girl.

Myka ran the backs of her fingers over Helena's cheek, then down across the side of her neck, over her shoulder, down her arm and across her belly. She stopped to turn her hand over. "Look at me."

Helena lifted her head, then forced herself to lift her eyes to Myka's. She knew she was shaking and that Myka would be able to feel that.

When Helena's eyes met hers, Myka dropped her hand lower, groaning when she found slick heat. "Helena..."

Helena's jaw worked in silence for a moment before she could make any sound come out. "Yes?"

"This... is this..." She couldn't make herself ask.

"Yes, it's yours, Myka," Helena swore, her knees finally giving way, and she was caught in strong arms.

"Jesus," Myka said softly, catching the girl and quickly lifting her up with an arm beneath her shoulders and one under her knees.

"That's what you've done to me from the moment you first laid the lash to my back, even over my dress. And every moment I spend with you or apart from you, thinking of you or remembering you, it gets worse until I think I'll die if you don't touch me."

"You won't die," Myka whispered, gazing at her in wonder as she carried her to the bed and laid her on it.

"I might," Helena argued, wrapping her arms around Myka's neck when she was laid on the bed, afraid the other girl was going to leave.

"Shhhh," Myka quieted her, ducking the hold and moving down the bed, using her hands to part Helena's thighs to make room for her head between them.

The first gentle lick had Helena's hips bucking so hard Myka's hands flew to hold her. "Slow," she commanded, waiting until the fight left the girl's movements before she lowered her head and held the girl down while she licked her again.

Helena's hips were no match for Myka's muscles, and though they tried to buck again, she barely managed a squirm.

"I said slow," Myka repeated sharply, starting to draw away.

"I'm sorry," Helena cried, tears streaming down her face out of need, frustration, happiness, disbelief... any combination of the tumult of emotions slashing through her, razing defenses to the ground everywhere they went.

Myka stayed where she was, stroking her thumbs softly back and forth over Helena's belly to calm her. "I'm not going anywhere," she promised. She had never been so slow and gentle with a lover before and she wanted to do something different with Helena, despite her comment the other day about needing to be able to do whatever she wanted and not risk too much pain. Right now she didn't want rough and frenzied, she wanted to make love, something she had never really experienced. "Relax, please, Helena... I want to show you how I feel."

Even through her haze of desperate arousal Helena could sense the importance of those words, and she did her best to calm herself. "You just got me so worked up ordering me about and claiming my body as your own..."

"I know," Myka soothed, still stroking Helena's belly. "Calm, love. I promise I'm not going anywhere."

Helena talked herself down by repeating Myka's words in her head and forcing herself to take slow, deep breaths. And the fact that Myka had called her 'love' might have had something to do with the way her hips stopped straining, her brows unfurrowed and a lazy smile touched her lips. "You called me 'love'," she whispered.

"I did," Myka said, chewing her bottom lip in an uncharacteristic display of uncertainty. "Is that all right?"

"More than," Helena nodded, reaching for Myka's hair to stroke it. And in a sudden burst of candor that she could no longer contain, Helena confessed in a hissing whisper, "I'm in love with you, Myka." And covered her face. This was the moment she'd been dreading, where Myka would get up and leave. But she couldn't not say it for another second.

Myka's eyes filled with startled tears and she crawled up Helena's body, resting her weight on her knees so she could force the girl's hands away from her face. "Helena," she said, her voice cracking. When Helena refused to open tightly shut eyes, she said it again. "Helena." Stilll no compliance. "Helena, I'm still not going anywhere," she finally breathed, unable to say what she really wanted to say, which was that she'd fallen just as hard.

"You don't feel the same, I know, but I had to be honest, it was tearing me apart," Helena said in a rush. "I promise I'll take whatever I can get from you and I won't be clingy or needy or--"

Well that kicked Myka squarely in the ass and she felt like a complete hypocrite for not saying it to begin with. "Helena," she interrupted her, and waited until she had quiet before she dropped her forehead onto the girl's shoulder. "I do, actually. I'm a chicken shit and I never wanted to admit it to you but I do feel the same."

Helena gasped, and whether she'd be spanked for it or not, she grabbed a fistful of Myka's hair and crushed their lips together for the first time.

Surprised, Myka's eyes widened, but she quickly melted into the kiss, relaxing against Helena and giving a quiet sound of approval. Helena's lips were impossibly soft and she tasted impossibly sweet. A taste Myka knew instantly that she would never get enough of.

Helena's eyes closed, her hand tightening in Myka's hair out of a desperate need to keep her close. She pulled back and opened her eyes to stare for a moment, committing everything to memory, and then leaned in again, opening her mouth when she felt the pressure of Myka's tongue.

They kissed, slow and unhurried, exploring each other's mouths much the way they had explored the power dynamic between them.

Helena was breathless when their lips broke apart. "Please tell me, Myka," she whispered.

Amazingly, Myka knew exactly what she was talking about. Her own breathing labored, she brought her hands to Helena's face and held her gaze as she whispered back, "I'm in love with you too, HG."

"Thank you," Helena practically moaned, relaxing her head into the pillow, dark hair fanned out beneath and around her. "And just so we're clear, it drives me wild when you use that nickname."

"Oh?" Myka questioned, climbing onto all fours above Helena, then sitting on the girl's hips so she could rake fingernails down her front.

"Ohhh," Helena groaned, arching into the touch.

"I don't think you understand what this fucking body does to me," Myka hissed quietly, sliding back to sit on Helena's thighs and gripping her hips with both hands.

Helena's entire body trembled at Myka's words and her touch. "Fuck." The curse slipped past parted lips to diffuse in the air between them.

"Fuck," Myka agreed. "I wanted to be slow but I don't think I can."

"It's all right," Helena rasped, her throat dry and scratchy. "Slow, fast, rough, gentle, I'll relish every moment."

Myka groaned, fingers digging harder into Helena's hips as she pushed the girl down harder into the mattress and moved heer knees apart to allow Helena's apart as well. "Spread your legs."

Helena complied instantly, rocking her hips into Myka's hands.

"You're gorgeous," Myka growled, dropping her head to bite and suck at one pale thigh.

"Unh!" Helena cried out, unable to believe she actually had Myka's mouth on her skin after all this time wanting. No fantasy could compare to the reality; the visceral feeling of it.

Myka took a moment to just breathe, and when she spoke her voice was rough and on edge. "I want to tie you up."

Helena shuddered, trying to think of anything she had lying around that Myka could make use of. "I don't know what I've got," she said, "but whatever I have is yours."

Myka didn't want to leave the precious gift before her, but she got off the bed with a kiss to Helena's hip bone and went to the closet.

"I may have some scarves," Helena offered, tilting her head to follow Myka's movements.

"Scarves tighten," Myka said, shaking her head.

"My mum has bondage rope downstairs," Helena said, biting her lip.

"Is she home?"

"No."

"Get up," Myka said, nodding toward the bedroom door. "Lead the way."

Shivering excitedly, Helena got out of bed and preceded Myka out of the bedroom, down the hall and through the kitchen to the basement door. The fact that she was walking around her house completely naked just gave her that much more of a thrill. She descended the stairs, listening to Myka's solid footsteps behind her, and opened up the cabinet with all the rope. She almost grabbed one but at the last second drew her hand back and stepped out of the way so Myka could choose.

Myka picked up a coil of pink rope and watched Helena try not to gag. With a grin she exchanged it for two black ones and grabbed her classmate by the hair. "I wouldn't torture you with pink rope," she said and kissed her.

"Christ," Helena pouted.

Myka raised an eyebrow and turned her by the elbow to land a stinging smack on her naked rear.

"I mean yes Ma'am," Helena amended with a blush.

Myka grabbed her around the waist with the hand still holding the rope and yanked her close, burying her face in the crook of Helena's neck and nuzzling with a soft bite. "Get upstairs."

"Yes Ma'am..." Helena laughed and started up the stairs after Myka released her.

When they were back in Helena's room with the door shut, Myka blinked. "Your door doesn't have a lock?"

"No, hence the reason my mother was able to walk in on us before," Helena sassed. "I thought you were a genius, Miss Bering..."

Myka took the chair from Helena's vanity and wedged it under the doorknob, then shoved Helena backwards onto the bed. "You'll pay for that. When I've got you tied up and begging, you'll pay for it."

Helena exhaled slowly. "I've no doubt."

Myka crawled over her and then raised up to her knees, uncoiling one of the ropes at a torturous pace, one inch at a time, watching Helena's eyes stay riveted to the task. She could almost feel the force of laser beams willing her to move faster, and she smirked.

Helena licked her lips and tried to be good. She was already in enough trouble for her sass.

Finally, the last coil undone, Myka slid the rope through her fingers, purring at the feel. "Put your hands above your head," she said quietly to her classmate.

Helena stared up at Myka as she complied with the directive, raising her hands above her head and resting them near the headboard.

Myka draped the rope across her thumb and forefinger, wrapping two loops around each and pulling through. Under Helena's watchful eyes, she made sure the head of the knot was aligned properly and fed the tails through. "Do you know what this knot is called?" she whispered, reaching for one of Helena's hands and slipping the cuff around her wrist, caressing the skin as she tightened it.

Helena's throat went dry, her stomach quivering as she heard the question and felt the rope around her wrist. She shook her head. She couldn't speak.

Myka trailed her fingers all the way down Helena's arm, then back up to her wrist. "It's called a Prusik Shackle," she told the girl, her voice quiet, almost reverent.

Helena nodded, eyes glued to the movement of Myka's hands.

Myka secured the rope around one of the slats in the headboard. "You can struggle all you like and it won't get tighter," she explained. "But I can get you out of it quickly if you need me to." She repeated the process with the other rope and Helena's other wrist, but before she tied it to the bed she stroked Helena's hair back from her face and breathed in her ear. "Do you have a safeword, Helena?"

Helena whimpered and shook her head. "Mum always told me to but... with me being in charge of my own scenes I never needed one."

"You need one now," Myka said, wrapping the rope around a slat in the headboard about two feet away from the first.

Helena's breathing picked up speed and her vision swam briefly in the wake of such a serious moment. "I-- I've no idea what to choose," she said honestly. "I know the idea, something that you'll remember but won't say naturally in the middle of anything. But I don't know what to choose."

"I have a lot of patience," Myka said gently, holding off on tying the rope until Helena decided. "I'll wait." She kept her hands on Helena's arm as she waited.

Helena tried to think but it was hard to process anything other than Myka, perfect Myka, being so patient and gentle and amazing. "Let's-- can we just use red?"

"We can use anything you like. Red is easy; it's a good choice." She tied off the end of the rope so that Helena had about two inches of give to struggle with, the same as her other hand. "The moment it leaves your lips, if it does, I will stop anything I'm doing and untie you. Understand?"

Helena swallowed past the excitement building up and nodded. "Yes Ma'am."

"And if you need me to slow down, say 'yellow'."

"Yes Ma'am."

Myka returned herself to where she'd been before they left the bedroom - kneeling astride Helena's thighs with her knees a good width apart, hands to Helena's hips, fingers digging in. "Spread your legs," she said again, since at the moment they had drifted closed.

Helena parted her thighs until her legs hit Myka's and she couldn't go any further. She tugged on her bindings and arched her back when she couldn't get free. It was so paradoxically liberating - bring it on, Freud.

"Tell me immediately if your hands start to tingle," Myka said quickly before dipping her head to run her tongue up her lover's right flank.

"Yes Ma'am!" Helena gasped with a start, shrinking from the sudden unexpected feeling of Myka's wet tongue on her side. She quickly settled and almost laughed at herself. Why should that have been unexpected?

"What are you going to tell me immediately?" Myka asked, picking her head up to look at Helena. It was important she make sure Helena had really been listening.

"If my hands start to tingle, Ma'am," Helena recited.

"Very good," Myka growled, taking a mouthful of Helena's breast and scraping her teeth over a pebbled nipple.

"Aah!" Helena cried, tugging on her bonds again, arching desperately into Myka's mouth. She almost couldn't take the pleasure of having Myka's mouth on her there for the first time. "Please..."

"You're already begging?" Myka released her nipple and raised an eyebrow. "Oh, HG, that doesn't bode well for you..."

"Who uses the word 'bode' in this decade?" Helena snapped in frustration.

Myka moved backwards until she could climb off of the bed and stand at the foot of it. She said nothing.

Helena knew it was a mistake the moment she'd said it, and when she lost Myka on top of her, she gave a mewling cry. "I'm sorry, Ma'am," she said.

Myka appreciated the fact that Helena was sorry. It didn't change the fact that she'd been snapped at. "I'm disappointed," she said with a sigh. "I really don't like to be disrespected and I don't deserve it either."

A crushing weight took residence on Helena's chest, the wind forced out of her lungs. "No," she whispered, tears in her eyes. "Myka, I'm sor--"

"What?" Myka said starkly.

"M-Ma'am," Helena corrected herself quickly. "Ma'am, please..." She jerked fiercely on her bonds, trying to free her hands, but the knots Myka had tied would not let her go. The rope just chafed her wrists. Unless she used her safeword she wasn't going anywhere.

Myka knew that Helena was new to the true power dynamic of dominance and submission even though she wasn't new to the scene in general. She climbed back over Helena on all fours and leaned down until their faces were a breath apart. She stared hard into Helena's eyes and spoke against her lips. "When we are doing this, and it is serious, which I think you know the difference, do not disrespect me, Helena. That is the quickest way to lose my touch and my respect for you as well. I know you don't understand how it feels to be in top space, but it is a very delicate balance between ego, desire and selflessness for me, and mouthing off when I'm in that head space just tips the scale too far. Do you understand?"

Helena held her breath the entire time Myka was speaking, and when the other girl had finished, she let it out shakily. A few tears escaped and trailed down her cheeks toward the bed, and she swallowed past the lump in her throat to answer. "Yes Ma'am, I understand." She fought to keep her eyes open - being on the receiving end of the intensity of Myka's gaze when she'd done something wrong was disquieting. "Thank you," she added.

Myka stayed where she was. "For what?"

"For taking the time to explain that to me, Ma'am," Helena whispered. "I understand and I'm very sorry. It won't happen again."

"Why did you say it?"

Myka still hadn't moved from her position so close. Close enough to kiss if she just lifted her head. But she wouldn't dare. "Because I want you so badly I was frustrated, Ma'am."

Myka couldn't help a small smile. "HG," she scolded, "letting me take control means letting me take control. Letting me tie you up doesn't give me control. Letting me spank you doesn't give me control. What gives me control is the decision you make to deal with your frustration if I don't touch you how or when you want. The decision to be respectful when you speak to me. The decision to wait patiently, all fucking night if you have to, until I am ready to give you what I want to give." She put her nose against Helena's cheek and breathed in deeply. "Do you understand?"

Helena really did. But whether she could behave properly was another story. "I do understand, Ma'am, and I promise you I'll do my absolute best."

Myka kissed her cheek, then lower, pulling the shell of Helena's ear between her teeth and flicking her tongue out over it. "Make me proud, Helena."

The combination of having her ear toyed with and Myka wanting to be proud of her hit Helena like a firestorm low in her belly. She clenched every muscle in her body and released, trying to ebb the tide. "Yes Ma'am," she finally said, flames licking her insides. She had never been so affected by anyone.

"Good girl," Myka whispered, dragging her tongue down the shell and over the lobe, down across the tensing cords in her throat, then dropping kisses from her collarbone to the last of her rib bones. Without warning she bit down hard on Helena's right flank, pulling the flesh into her mouth and sucking until she left a bright red mark that would soon mottle with purple.

Helena didn't know how much she wanted to hear that until she heard it. When Myka called her a good girl, she melted. When Myka bit her, she groaned. When she could tell there would be a mark left behind, she got wetter. When she tried to put her arms around Myka and they wouldn't move, and the ropes irritated her chafed skin, she whimpered.

"Good girl," Myka said again, trailing kisses over Helena's breasts before latching onto one nipple and suckling gently.

Helena had no control over the way she arched to reach Myka's mouth. She used the inches of slack she had to wrap her fingers around the ropes so she would have something to squeeze to ground her. She had never been played with, teased to frustration like this before. Her previous lovers had been almost frantic to give her whatever she wanted. This truly was an exercise in both self-control and giving it up. When Myka pinched the nipple she wasn't paying attention to, Helena cried out softly.

Myka pinched harder, reveling in Helena's answering whimper. She pinched harder, harder, harder, until Helena broke down and issued one of her safewords.

"Yellow! Yellow," Helena gasped as the pain started to get too much.

Myka instantly released her grip and palmed Helena's breast instead, gently squeezing and then rubbing out the pain in her nipple. Rather than say anything she showed Helena her appreciation for the communication by bringing their lips together. She kissed Helena soft, slow, sweet, and when she pulled back she asked, "are you all right, love?"

"Yes Ma'am," Helena said quickly, nodding. "Thank you."

"You're being so good... it's making me wet," Myka hissed, dropping a hand between Helena's legs. "Open."

Helena complied with a groan. "Yes Ma'am."

"Do you want something?"

"Yes Ma'am."

"What do you want?"

"I want to feel you inside me, Ma'am... but I know I'm not in charge, and I am grateful for every touch you g-- ah!" She jerked hard on the ropes as Myka interrupted by sliding two fingers smoothly inside her.

"Can you feel me inside you, Helena?" Myka whispered with a smug little grin.

"Yes Ma'am, fuck," Helena swore.

"You're so tight..." She wiggled her fingers and slid out halfway, then slid in again and pressed firmly.

Helena wasn't sure how much longer she could have a conversation. "I haven't done this very much, Ma'am," she confessed.

Myka groaned and dropped her forehead onto Helena's shoulder as she gentled her thrusts. "I find that hard to believe."

"There haven't been many people I've really given myself to, Ma'am," Helena explained. "I've messed around a lot, as you know, but only a few people have gotten past second base..."

Myka gave a snort of laughter at the baseball reference. "I thought Brits hated baseball," she said, amused, biting Helena's collarbone.

"How many people have you--"

"You can ask me that when I'm not knuckle-deep inside you," Myka cut her off, starting to move her fingers again.

"Yes Ma'am," Helena blushed, rocking her hips into the amazing sensations.

The feel of Helena hot and tight around her fingers was decadent and when she started pulling little cries and whimpers from the girl arousal slashed through her, quickening her pulse. She, in turn, quickened her pace.

Helena couldn't speak anymore and was reduced to noises of protest and pleasure, depending on what Myka was doing in that instant. She started to squeeze her thighs together, not sure whether she was trying to increase the pressure or escape it.

"What do you think you're doing?" Myka asked, still pumping her fingers as her free hand came down hard on Helena's thigh.

Helena's eyes flew wide and she let her legs fall back open with a moan. "I'm sorry Ma'am..."

Myka smacked her again in the same spot and pressed her thumb to Helena's clit, rubbing it back and forth and in firm, quick circles.

Helena gasped and arched and clutched the ropes as tightly as she could, and pulled on them, pulled, pulled, pulled, threw her head back and screamed when she came.

As she let Helena ride out her orgasm, she slowed her fingers and eventually slipped them free, wiping them quickly on the sheets and crawling forward to start the process of untying Helena. She kept one of her knees in contact with Helena's side as she reached for her right hand and uncurled the girl's fingers from around the rope. She had little rope burns on her fingers and it gave Myka's heart a shot full of affection. She slowly worked the rope until the cuff was big enough to slip Helena's hand out, and she held it in both of hers, massaging her forearm, wrist, palm and fingers. She took care with each part, then lowered Helena's arm to her side and moved to do the same to her left.

Helena lay still, staring up at Myka, watching in fascination as she took such care in untying and caressing her irritated skin. The edges of her vision were still blurry and she felt like she weighed a thousand pounds and nothing at all simultaneously.

When she finished laving Helena's left arm, hand, wrist and fingers with attention and lowered that arm as well, she slid her own arms underneath the girl and lifted her into an embrace. She sat like that, calming her racing heart, calming her raging emotions, time chipping away at the head space she'd entered and allowing her to come fully back to herself before she spoke. "How are you feeling?"

"Incredible," Helena whispered, her voice slightly hoarse. "Important. Cared for."

"You burned your fingers on the rope, love," Myka said quietly.

"I'm starting to realize that," Helena replied, flexing said fingers.

"I'm sorry," Myka whispered.

"For what? Being Earth shattering in bed?" Helena teased lightly. "Take it as a compliment, darling."

Myka laughed and stroked Helena's hair as she kissed her. "Does your mom have anything for rope burns?"

Helena snickered. "Most likely."

"It's almost two am. When do you think she'll be home?"

"You're going to ask her for it?" Helena's eyebrows lifted.

Myka choked. "Fuck no. I just don't know whether to leave you in here or bring you with me downstairs to find it."

"Oh. Well I've actually no idea, so perhaps you should leave me in here."

"All right," Myka said, laying Helena back down and rising from the bed, heading for the door. She moved the chair out of the way and closed the door behind her, then made her way to the basement and looked around until she found a cabinet with medicines. She couldn't help an eye roll at the Viagra even though she knew that for some it was perfectly legitimate. Her eyebrows raised when she spotted a jar of silver sulfadiazine cream. Well that was certainly a good option for burns. She'd expected A and D ointment or something. Helena's weren't bad burns and not likely to get infected, but the antibiotic element couldn't hurt.

She closed the cabinet and took the jar upstairs. When she entered Helena's room her breath caught in her throat. Her classmate hadn't moved from where she'd laid her down, and was currently looking at her with enough adoration to feed a narcissist's ego. Rare though it was, she blushed as she moved to sit next to Helena on the bed.

"Hold out your hands," she directed, opening the jar.

Helena reached out and turned her hands palm up.

Myka lamented the burns for a moment before dipping one fingertip into the jar and placing her other hand underneath Helena's to brace it as she gently spread the cream over each individual burn.

Helena bit her lip, reveling in being pampered over a few little rope burns.

Myka switched to Helena's other hand and gathered more cream, spreading it just as gently. When she was done she capped the jar and leaned over to put it on Helena's nightstand, then sat back up and just looked at her. "You are flawless," she breathed.

Helena's cheeks colored and she fought not to touch Myka. She didn't want to rub off the cream that had been so lovingly applied. "How long before I can use my hands?" she asked instead.

Myka shrugged and shook her head. "I don't know. Just let it absorb for a little while, I guess."

Helena nodded and studied Myka's features. "You are flawless yourself," she finally offered.

"Helena, I'm not," Myka scolded.

"But you think I am?" Helena scoffed. "Please, Myka."

"Watch yourself," Myka warned.

"Or what? You can say nice things about me but I can't about you? That's absurd."

Myka opened her mouth to retort, but shut it. "Fair point," she said instead.

Helena beamed.

"Oh shut up," Myka laughed.

Helena broke into laughter at that and rolled onto her side away from Myka. "Are you staying the night?"

Myka's palms started to sweat and she rubbed them on her pants. "My school stuff is at home," she started, figuring Helena had faced away from her purposely in case she said no.

"Of course," Helena said, trying not to sound stiff. She was actually impressed with herself for halfway succeeding.

"I can stay if I leave early enough to get home and get ready for school," she said hesitantly.

Helena rolled onto her back again and stared at Myka. "Seriously? You'll stay?"

Myka shrugged one shoulder. "If you want me to."

"Myka... you know I always want you to. How can you be so dominant and so insecure?"

"Oh let me tell you, little girl, they are not mutually exclusive."

"You're just so sure of yourself most of the time. It's hard to believe you don't know how much I want you to stay. I'm not particularly subtle, after all..."

Myka snickered. "No, you're not," she agreed, finally taking off her shoes and climbing into bed. "Are you tired?"

"Yes."

"Are you going to put on pajamas?"

"Not if you're sleeping over."

Myka got back out of bed. "Where do you keep your pajamas?" she asked.

"Third drawer."

She retrieved a pair of black silk shorts and a matching camisole and stood beside the side of the bed Helena had retreated to. "Sit up. Arms up," she said.

Helena sat up and raised her arms over her head, and Myka slipped the shirt on for her.

"I'm only doing this for you because of the sulfa cream," she told the grinning girl. "Stand up."

Helena got off of the bed and lifted one foot, then the other so Myka could get her into the shorts.

Myka dragged the shorts up and fitted them over Helena's hips, then kissed her forehead and lightly tapped her on the butt. "Now get in bed."

"Yes Mum," Helena teased, careful of the cream as she pulled the sheet back and slid under.

Myka rolled her eyes and got into bed on the other side. "Good night, Helena."

"Good night, Myka."

Chapter Text

Myka didn't sleep well - she never did outside of her own bed - so she was wide awake by the time she needed to leave to get home. Helena was still out cold. "Helena," she said, gently shaking her.

Helena groaned and rolled away from the voice trying to penetrate her happy sleep.

"Helena," Myka said louder, shaking her a bit more. She wasn't going to leave without waking her up.

"What?" Helena whined, finally rolling onto her back and opening her eyes. She blinked when she saw Myka. "Oh. Sorry. Hi," she said sheepishly.

"Hi," Myka replied, amused. "I have to go home and get ready, but I wondered if you wanted me to come back and pick you up and give you a ride to school?"

"Yes," Helena said. "Thank you." As if she would miss an opportunity like that.

"Good. I just got my car back yesterday from the shop so no more cabs."

Helena was already starting to fall back asleep but she forced herself awake when Myka crouched down in front of her.

"Helena?"

"Yes?"

Myka reached out and ran her fingers gently through her classmate's messy hair. "Why don't I help you get ready first, and then we'll go to my house together?"

Now she was awake. "Help me?"

Myka smiled coyly and trailed her fingers down the side of Helena's face. "Well... with your fingers injured..."

Helena's body came alive in an instant, her eyes going hooded. "Yes?" she asked, slowly licking her lips.

"I thought you might appreciate some help."

"Yes," she practically moaned.

"I assume you want to wear a dress?"

"Mhmm."

"I don't suppose you want a long-sleeved one to cover the chafing on your wrists?"

"Too hot," Helena said with a smirk.

"If any teachers see that they'll send you to the counselor or maybe call the cops," Myka pointed out, but with a sigh she grabbed a short-sleeved black dress from the closet and tossed it onto the foot of the bed.

"Underwear in the top drawer?"

"Underwear?"

Myka shot her a look. "You're wearing underwear, Helena."

Helena snickered and nodded. "Yes. Top drawer."

Myka found a pair and grabbed some socks, tossed them on the bed, and went back to the closet to search for shoes. "I like these," she said, emerging with a pair of shiny black mary janes hanging by the straps from one finger.

"Do you?" Helena asked, stretching her arms above her head with a yawn. "I could get used to this."

"I'm sure you could," Myka said dryly, setting the shoes down next to the bed. "Bras?"

"Second drawer."

Myka grabbed a black lace bra and the ensemble was complete. She returned to Helena and threw the sheet off the girl, then grabbed her shorts and tugged them down and off.

"Ooh, playing rough, I see," Helena drawled, grinning at Myka's heated look.

Myka worked the tank top up over Helena's breasts and over her head, no thanks to her classmate who didn't move to help at all. She grabbed the underwear and slid them on. "Lift your hips," she demanded when Helena didn't move to help that process at all either.

"Ugh." Helena rolled her eyes but lifted her hips as commanded.

"Oh my God, what did I say about eye rolling?" Myka asked incredulously, her palm catching Helena hard on one thigh.

"Ow!" Helena yelped. "Sorry."

"Behave yourself and help me get you dressed, all right? I don't want to be late."

"Sorry," Helena said, meaning it now, and she sat up, rubbing her thigh with the back of her hand.

Myka moved her hand out of the way and dropped a quick kiss to the reddening skin, then got Helena into her bra, clipping it behind her back once the straps were on, then adjusting it for her. "Up," she said, taking a step back to make room as she picked up the dress and maneuvered her hands down to the back hem.

Helena stood up and raised her arms once Myka lifted the dress above her head. She slid her hands through the sleeves and let Myka pull it down and adjust it for her. "Myka," she whispered, leaning her forehead on the other girl's shoulder, carefully bringing one hand to rest over the middle of Myka's chest.

Myka stopped reaching for the socks and stood with Helena, not sure what her classmate wanted.

Helena stood like that for a few seconds, just breathing everything in, and then sat on the bed so Myka could put on her socks and shoes.

One side of Myka's mouth quirked up in an affectionate smirk and she got Helena into her socks and shoes. "Okay, bathroom. Let's brush your teeth and your hair and get out of here."

"You're going to brush my teeth?"

Myka raised an eyebrow. "Do you object?"

"No, I just..." She wasn't sure how to finish that sentence.

"Then get moving."

Myka followed her into the en-suite bathroom and squeezed some toothpaste onto her toothbrush, then ran water over it and brought it to Helena's waiting mouth.

It was strange having someone else brush her teeth, but only really because of the different angle than she was used to. When Myka finished she spit in the sink, then accepted a sip of water when offered. "That was... interesting," she said.

Myka opened drawers until she found Helena's hairbrush and quickly but gently brushed her hair. "Ready?"

"Are you going to carry my schoolbooks for me, too?" Helena asked cheekily.

"No, you carry your bag over your shoulder, not with your hands," Myka returned the sass. She picked up Helena's bag from the floor next to the closet and slung the strap over her classmate's shoulder.

--

"I'll be five minutes," Myka said when she pulled up in front of her house. She was halfway to the door when she registered the look on Helena's face from thirty seconds prior and she stopped, jogging back to the car. "I hate my parents," she explained in a rush. "I don't want them to meet you because they don't deserve to know you. They'll be downstairs having coffee right now and I just--"

"It's okay," Helena interrupted her. "You can tell me later."

Myka nodded and jogged up to the house. She let herself in as quietly as possible and headed straight for the stairs, but luck was not with her this morning.

"Where the fuck have you been?" Ashley asked, moving from the kitchen proper into the doorway to the living room.

"What do you care?" Myka asked, continuing up the stairs.

"Don't talk to your mother like that!" David yelled from the kitchen. "She was worried about you!"

"Did I miss a morning chore or something?" Myka called back, walking faster. She slammed her bedroom door and locked it, then stripped off her clothes and changed into clean ones, brushed her teeth and fixed her hair, ignoring the pounding on her door. She debated climbing out the window and down the tree outside, but instead she forged ahead.

As soon as she opened the door her mother grabbed her by the elbow, but she shook off the hold, moving past Ashley and rushing down the stairs.

"Where were you, Myka?" Ashley insisted, following her at an alarming pace.

Myka needed to get out of the house before Ashley could catch up to her. She threw open the door and yanked it shut behind her, all but running toward the car.

Ashley followed her daughter out of the house, screaming. "Myka God damnit get back here right now and answer me!"

Helena's eyes widened and she sat up in alarm as Myka reached the car. "Are you all right?" she asked.

Myka couldn't believe Ashley had actually followed her outside. She got into the car and started the engine as her mother approached the passenger's side.

"Who the fuck is this?" Ashley sneered.

"None of your fucking business," Myka hissed back.

"I've told you not to talk to me like that and--" Ashley stopped talking when she caught sight of Helena's wrists and turned furious eyes on Myka. "Myka Ophelia, are you doing that shit again?" she shrieked.

"Get away from the car, Mother," Myka demanded through clenched teeth.

Helena was aghast. No wonder Myka hadn't wanted her to come in. She was no longer offended.

"You listen to me, you ungrateful little bitch! What did we tell you about that?" She turned toward the house. "DAVID!"

"We're going to be late for school, Mrs. Bering," Helena tried to get the woman to back up so they could leave. As it were, Myka would run over her feet.

"Don't you fucking talk to me," Ashley said, pointing a finger at Helena. "You let my daughter tie you up? Does she knock you around, too?"

"Only if I'm really good," Helena purred, no longer caring to be polite. "Please get the fuck away from the car, Mrs. Bering."

Myka spared a moment to be blindingly impressed, but it was short lived when her father came charging out of the house.

"David!" Ashley shrieked when he ran up beside her. "She's doing it again."

David immediately looked Helena up and down and when his eyes landed on her wrists he hit the roof. "Was the hospital not enough?" he screamed at Myka. "You need to go back?"

"I will run you both over if you don't fucking move," Myka said, her hands shaking, heart racing, blood surging so loudly in her ears that she could almost drown out everything else. She put the car in gear and as she started to drive, her parents both jumped back away from the car, both still screaming at her. She floored the gas pedal and tried to calm down, not wanting to crash the car, but it just kept getting harder to breathe.

Helena heard Myka start hyperventilating, and they were far enough away that it would be safe to stop. "Pull over, Myka," she said. "Myka, pull over, please, you're not okay to drive..."

Somewhere through the haze of panic she heard Helena telling her to pull over, and she veered off the road, bringing the car to a stop and shifting into park. Everything washed over her at once and she covered her face, sobbing into her hands. She never wanted Helena to see or hear any of this.

"Breathe, Myka, breathe," Helena said, unbuckling her seatbelt and kneeling on the console between the seats so she could lay a hand on Myka's back.

Myka jerked at the touch but didn't move away from it; a dim voice in the back of her mind told her it was Helena, and that if Helena was willing to comfort her after all of that, she could accept it.

Her lover's heartbroken sobs twisted her stomach in knots. She gently rubbed her back, letting Myka fall apart. "I'm here, love," she said softly. "I'm right here."

Myka cried until the world stopped spinning; until Helena's gentle rubbing on her back worked its way into her mind and started to calm her. It was longer before she could draw in a full breath, but finally the only telltale sign of her panic attack was her shaking hands. "I understand if you--"

"Don't even think it, let alone say it," Helena cut her off, inching forward until she was kneeling sideways in Myka's lap. There was barely room for her and the steering wheel dug into her side, but she didn't care. "I'm sorry to have to tell you this but your parents are utter fucking morons."

That made Myka snort with laughter. "Why are you so perfect?"

"Because you spoil me rotten?" Helena guessed.

"That's true, I really do," Myka agreed.

"You know I'll not let them carry out that threat. My mum's got lawyer friends." She snickered. "And pharmacist friends, and cop friends, and judge friends..."

"Pharmacist friends, that explains the sulfa cream."

"Yes it does. But honestly, Myka, I don't know what they've done to you before, but now that you've got me it'll never happen again. Bloody fucking bastards."

Myka put her arms around Helena. "I've got you, huh?"

"For as long as you'll have me."

"I like you kneeling in my lap."

"You know I am yours to command whenever you please," Helena murmured. "I hope you take nothing they say to heart."

"I try not to. I know they're just ignorant and don't understand."

"It's a healthy expression of sexuality," Helena continued. "People who don't understand can't help but judge. The shop gets hate mail sometimes."

"It's probably from my parents."

Helena laughed. "Likely!"

"Remember when we were first talking and I said I had a lot of brothers and sisters?"

"Yes."

"I don't know why I said that. I only have one brother and one sister."

Helena raised an eyebrow. "That is quite an intriguing lie to tell. One wonders the benefit."

"There wasn't any benefit, really. I think I was just flustered that you were talking to me."

"Aw, did I make you nervous?" Helena teased.

"Flustered, not nervous," Myka corrected. "Very different."

"Of course," Helena said, almost rolling her eyes but stopping herself at the last second. She draped her arms around Myka's neck and kissed her. "I won't let anyone hurt you, Myka. Ever," she whispered.

"You're so sweet," Myka whispered back. "They can't send me anywhere now that I'm eighteen, but you have no idea how much I appreciate you trying to protect me."

"Oh thank bloody fucking hell," Helena breathed. "I didn't know you were eighteen. I worried for ten minutes for nothing?"

Myka laughed and squeezed her. "And you? Are you of age?"

"As of last month," Helena said, grinning.

"Excellent, I'm not breaking the law," Myka smirked.

"Oh, eighteen and seventeen isn't breaking the law and you know it," Helena scoffed.

"Well I'm glad you're eighteen anyway."

"Me too. So are we skipping school today?"

Myka threw her head back and laughed. "You wish."

"Damn."

"Get back in your seat."

As Helena moved off of her, Myka grabbed her arm and leaned over her seat for another kiss. "Thank you, Helena. Really, thank you."

"Any time," Helena replied with a dreamy smile, buckling her seatbelt.

--

When science came around, Helena got in early and sat on Myka's desk with a pout.

Myka glanced at the gauze taped around Helena's wrists and bit her lip to stifle laughter.

"You were right. I got sent to the counselor," Helena whined.

Myka couldn't help it; she burst out laughing. "And she made you cover them up?"

"Yes, it's horrendous," Helena complained. "I want to rip this shit off and throw it in her face. This is censorship!"

Myka wheezed, trying to catch her breath, doubled over. The more Helena said the harder she laughed.

"Myka!" she shrieked.

"I'm sorry!" Myka howled, sure everyone was looking at them, but she couldn't help it. "It's not censorship, Helena, it's just not appropriate for school..."

Helena couldn't care less if anyone or everyone was looking at them. "Myka Bering!" She jumped off the desk and stomped her foot.

Myka forcibly wound down her laughter and looked apologetically up at Helena. "Sorry," she said again.

Helena's lip stuck out in an adorable pout.

"How can I make it up to you?" Myka asked, still rocked by the occasional chuckle.

"Kiss me," Helena said without missing a beat, the pout changing to a smirk.

Before she could talk herself out of it Myka stood up and kissed her classmate. Just a quick peck on the lips and she sat back down.

Stunned, Helena stood staring as Myka sat back down. Holy Christ, she had never expected Myka to do that. A blush coloring her cheeks, she slid into the desk in front of the other girl as the teacher came into the room.

Myka grinned to herself. Helena speechless was a sight to behold.

"Dude, did you see that?" Myka heard someone a few rows over presumably ask their friend. "Bering just kissed Wells. What the fuck is Wells doing just sitting there?"

"Oh my God," the friend hissed back. "You're such a fucking idiot. Like lesbians don't exist?"

Myka choked down a snort of laughter, not wanting to be caught eavesdropping.

"But she just kissed her in the midde of class," the first voice insisted. "Wells should be filing a harassment suit or something. As if she would go for anyone not on the football team."

"Yeah, and what's wrong with her wrists? Did she try to kill herself?" a third voice piped in.

Helena was listening as well and she'd had enough. She stood up and spun on the trio, eyes alight with anger as she ripped off the gauze covering her wrists and didn't care where it landed. "I'll have you know something... I am in love with Myka Bering, which is none of your business and is probably too advanced for your ignorant in-bred mind to comprehend since she's not my cousin. And no, I didn't try to kill myself, as you can see; I just had Earth-shattering sex." She upended her desk in their direction and left the classroom.

Everyone, including the teacher, turned their eyes to Myka.

Blushing ten ways from Tuesday, she motioned over her shoulder toward the door at the back of the classroom and stood up, picking up her bag. "I'm just gonna..." And she fled.

She took a moment to breathe with her back against the door, then went in search of Helena.

Helena was easy enough to find, crying in the girls' bathroom. "Hey," she said, knocking on the only occupied stall. "Why are you crying? I should be crying," she teased.

"Because I hate when you're mad at me."

"Who says I'm mad?"

The lock slid and the door peeked open. "I thought..."

"Open the door and come here," Myka said.

Wiping her eyes and sniffling, Helena emerged from the stall and stood in front of Myka, who for some insane and amazing reason gave her a hug.

"Don't cry, love," Myka said softly, kissing the top of Helena's head. "I hate to see you cry... from sadness..." She actually wasn't trying to be funny or witty. She just realized after she'd said it that it only applied to sadness.

Helena laughed a little bit anyway and sniffled again. "You're not mad?"

"No. I'm not happy, but I'm not mad."

"I'm sorry. I just have a hard time not shoving things in ignorant people's faces."

"The being in love part was great. You could've stopped there and I'd have been ecstatic," Myka chuckled. "The Earth-shattering sex part... Jesus Helena, even the teacher stared at me after you left."

"Like... in horror, or admiration?"

"Helena Wells..."

"It's a valid question!"

"No, it isn't." Myka squeezed her tight and breathed in the scent of her hair. "I think this is the first time that I'm going to have to really and truly punish you."

Helena's breath caught and her palms went clammy. "What?" she asked, her voice quiet and unsure. "I-- I thought you weren't mad."

"I wouldn't punish you if I was mad," Myka tried to explain. "Punishment isn't about vengeance in that way. If I were ever angry with you I would keep my distance until I wasn't."

"Oh," Helena whispered, tears in her eyes again. "I don't like this feeling, Myka."

"What feeling, love?"

"The feeling of being in trouble, I suppose. My stomach is twisted, but not in the pleasant way. My heart is racing, but not from excitement. I'm sweating, but not from the heat."

"Are you afraid?" Myka asked.

"Not per se," Helena replied. "I don't think it's fear, exactly. Perhaps it's knowing I've failed you enough to warrant a real punishment."

"You haven't failed me, HG," Myka said gently. "You just made a reckless decision in the heat of frustration without regard for how it might affect me."

"And how is that not failing you?"

"Because there's no straight line to success, is there? Nothing is mapped out for us. Success and failure are relative. There is no goal for you to achieve so you can't possibly have failed at anything. This is a relationship, not a checklist. Nothing you could ever do would fail me. Ever."

Helena relaxed slightly into the embrace though her stomach was still in knots. "What are you going to do?"

Myka sighed and stroked Helena's hair, trying to decide. "The first thing I'm doing isn't a punishment, but I'm making a rule. If it's possible to avoid showing something off at school, from now on you will avoid it."

Helena gave a long-suffering sigh. "Like wearing a long-sleeved dress today when you suggested it," she acknowledged her understanding.

"Yes," Myka nodded.

"And my punishment?" Helena asked quietly after a few moments of silence.

"You have to sit across the room from me in science for the rest of the week, and you are not to speak to me in that class for the rest of the week."

Helena's knees almost buckled as she gasped. "Myka, please, no, it's our only class together."

"And if you can't be appropriate during class then you can't interact with me. I'm missing the entire class today because of what you said and did, which means that I'll have to get notes from some idiot if I want to be able to do the homework."

Helena felt like a thousand pounds had just crushed her chest and she started to cry. "But I look forward to that class every day because of you," she said shakily.

"And I look forward to it because of you," Myka told her gently. "But for the rest of this week, you're punished. I understand it's hard for you, but that's the point of a punishment. To reflect and learn something. Please don't argue, I've made my decision and you're going to respect it, Helena."

Helena cried into her chest, holding her tightly. "I'm sorry," she whispered.

Myka took that as acceptance and kissed the top of her head again. "I know, love."

Chapter Text

"Am I still allowed to speak to you if I see you in the hallways or at lunch?" Helena asked after a few minutes of quiet.

"Yes," Myka told her with a nod. "And I still expect to meet you after school for your math lessons. The only time you are punished is during science class this week. Honestly I don't even know how I'm going to face the teacher after today."

"I'm really so very sorry," Helena whispered, swiping at her eyes. "Do you want me to go and say I was only joking to shock our classmates?"

"No, you don't need to lie on top of misbehaving," Myka said, raising an eyebrow. "I should pull up your dress and spank you right here for that."

Helena forgot her misery for a moment and gasped. "You wouldn't." But of course she hoped that Myka would.

Myka backed them into the handicapped stall and locked the door. "Dress up."

Helena took in a sharp breath and reached behind her to lift her dress. She bent forward a little so it wouldn't fall back down if she let go.

"Panties."

"Down or off?"

"Down, Helena," Myka said dryly. "You know better."

Helena pushed her panties down to her knees.

Myka wasted no time, bringing her hand down with a firm smack.

Helena bit her lip. Myka wasn't pulling punches. It stung so deliciously.

Myka spanked her again.

"Ow," Helena breathed, tapping the heel of her shoe on the tiled floor.

The bathroom door opened and Myka paused with her hand in mid air, reaching her other hand to clamp over Helena's mouth. "Shh," she warned.

Helena kissed Myka's palm, running her tongue over the other girl's fingers.

Myka was tempted to spank her despite someone entering the bathroom. She took her hand away and lightly smacked the back of Helena's head.

Helena bit her lip again, to keep from laughing, and held still like a good girl.

It seemed like forever before whoever it was finished washing their hands and left. When the bathroom door closed, Myka landed about ten smacks in a row, loving Helena's sharp intake of breath and the way she started to squirm.

"I can't believe you're spanking me at school," Helena said with a smirk.

Suddenly the loudspeaker blared to life. "Helena Wells and Myka Bering, please report to the principal's office. Helena Wells and Myka Bering, please report to the principal's office."

Myka's eyes went wide and she delivered one final smack, hard enough to make Helena yelp and her hand sting. "Get your panties in place and let's go," she snapped.

Heart racing, Helena pulled up her panties and stood, her dress dropping back down, and hurried out of the bathroom after Myka. "I wonder what took them so long to call us in," she said as they rounded the corner in the hallway and reached the office.

Mr. and Mrs. Bering as well as Mrs. Wells were already in the office waiting when they entered.

Myka's heart thudded against her ribcage, her stomach twisting as soon as she saw her parents.

"Mum?" Helena asked, raising her eyebrows.

"Hello dear," Mrs. Wells said, shaking her head disapprovingly at Helena's choice to flaunt her lifestyle.

"Let's go, Myka," Ashley growled, heading for the door.

"I'm not going anywhere with you," Myka said, raising an eyebrow. She turned to the principal. "I'm my own legal guardian. Why did you call them?"

The principal held up her hands placatingly. "I called your parents in the hope of all of us having a conversation. I'm very concerned about what happened today and--"

"It's disgusting and shameful and I won't have it!" Ashley shrieked, glaring down first the principal and then Myka.

Helena looked at her mother out of the corner of her eye.

"Excuse me?" Mrs. Wells asked, slowly rising from her chair. "What exactly is disgusting and shameful?"

Ashley waved her hand toward Helena's wrists. "The things they do! Her letting Myka tie her up and knock her around, it's disgusting! Our daughter has a mental problem; we tried to fix it but obviously we failed!"

Helena cringed for Ashley.

Mrs. Wells tried to cool the steam coming from her ears and clenched and unclenched her fists several times before speaking. "First of all, only the ignorant fear the unknown. Second of all, Myka does not 'knock her around'. Whether they engage in spanking or flogging or caning, they do so safely and consensually, and to consider it 'knocking her around' is both ignorant and narrow minded. Third of all, your daughter most certainly does not have a mental problem and the fact that you tried to 'fix' it shows your lack of education on the subject specifically and lack of intelligence in general. You are very clearly the problem in this equation, not Myka. Thank God she is her own legal guardian so you can't put her through whatever it is you've done to her before." She turned to Helena. "Let's go, dear."

Helena practically radiated pride as she listened to her mother defend her and Myka. She grinned and moved toward her mother.

Mrs. Wells looked at Myka. "You too, dear."

Myka beamed, blushing at both Mrs. Wells's words and the fact that she was being included in the escape. She had never had an adult stand up for her like that before and it felt amazing. She wanted to flip her parents off as she left but refrained in favor of maturity, simply following Helena and Mrs. Wells out the door.

"Will you ladies be attending the rest of your classes today?" Mrs. Wells asked once they were in the hallway.

Helena deferred to Myka, biting her lip and looking hopefully at her classmate.

Myka opened her mouth to say 'of course', but changed her mind at the adorable look on Helena's face. "You know what? No, we're not. I'm going to take my girl and her mother out for burgers and shakes and say fuck you to this school."

Helena squealed, delighted. "Myka!" she laughed, throwing her arms around her.

Myka laughed and hugged her back. "I take it that's a yes?"

Helena realized something and gasped, pulling back to look up at Myka. "You called me your girl."

Myka flushed. "Sorry, I just--"

"Don't say sorry!" Helena interrupted her.

Mrs. Wells smirked. "I do believe she's wanted to be your girl since the moment you made a beautiful mess of her back," she told Myka affectionately.

"Mum!" Helena whined.

Myka grinned, and not caring if anyone was in the halls, she gave Helena a slow, sweet kiss. "Who wants burgers and shakes?" she asked when she pulled back.

Helena and Mrs. Wells both raised their hands.

--

Helena sat as close as humanly possible to Myka without being in her lap as they ate burgers and fries and had shakes. Well, she and Myka did. Mrs. Wells had ordered a salad and a glass of water.

As Myka popped her last french fry into her mouth she regarded Mrs. Wells curiously. "Thank you for standing up for me," she said after she'd swallowed. She wasn't so rude as to talk with her mouth full, especially in front of her girl's mother.

"Mum's a crusader," Helena teased. "Fighting for the rights of kinky motherfuckers everywhere."

"Helena," Mrs. Wells scolded, brows furrowed in distaste. "You know I abhor crass language." She turned to Myka. "You're quite welcome, dear. I do hope you plan to move out of that house sooner rather than later."

Myka's mood descended from the peak it had reached and she used her straw to poke around what was left of her milkshake. "I don't want to leave my brother and sister alone with them. I mean... they treat the kids better than they ever treated me, but they're still idiots and do more harm than good."

"I understand, dear. That's very selfless of you."

"I'm afraid after today they're going to kick me out, though. Then I won't have a choice."

"I hope that doesn't happen, but you are always welcome in our home," Mrs. Wells said, reaching across the table to pat Myka's hand consolingly.

"Thanks," Myka murmured, staring at her empty plate. She smiled though when Helena hugged into her side. "Hey, love."

"Hey," Helena echoed, squeezing Myka tightly before letting go. "Are you going to feed me the rest of my fries?" She held up her hands, reminding Myka of the mild burns across her fingers.

"You managed to eat most of them just fine on your own," Myka drawled, but she plucked one from the plate and held it up to Helena's mouth.

Helena happily ate the offered fry and waited for the next.

"My daughter is a handful. You manage her well," Mrs. Wells spoke up after watching the exchange.

"I try not to let her get away with too much," Myka agreed, feeding her another fry. "I'm the one that made a fuss about the rope burns, that's why she's getting away with this."

Helena chuckled and ate the fry, looking deviously innocent.

"Did you use my rope?" Mrs. Wells suddenly asked.

Myka's jaw worked for a moment before she nodded sheepishly. "Sorry."

"It's fine, I was just curious since two black coils were missing this morning."

"She almost used pink, Mum," Helena spoke up, eyes wide.

Mrs. Wells couldn't hold in her laughter. "Oh, HG, you are too much. Pink rope wouldn't have killed you."

"Mum," Helena whined. "Every time I looked at it it would have brought me out of head space."

Mrs. Wells laughed harder. "Please, stop..."

Myka smirked and nudged her girl with an elbow, then fed her the last french fry.

Helena munched contentedly and batted her eyes at Myka. "Milkshake?"

Had they not been with Helena's mother, Myka would have made her ask properly. As it was she held the glass so Helena could drink from the straw.

--

After lunch Mrs. Wells dropped the girls back off at school so they could get Myka's car. "Thank you for treating," she called after Myka.

"You're welcome!" Myka called back over her shoulder.

"See you later, Mum!" Helena called, sliding into the passenger's seat of Myka's car.

Myka got into the driver's seat and started the engine. "Where to?"

"Do I really have to sit across the room from you in science?" Helena asked, having suddenly remembered that and continued to not like it.

Myka shut off the car. "Come here," she said, moving her chair back to make room.

Helena climbed over to straddle Myka's lap, staring down at her hands.

Myka put her arms around the girl and pulled her closer. "Yes, you really have to sit across the room from me in science, and I don't want to hear another word about it, Helena. You're being disrespectful by constantly questioning my decision."

"Shit," Helena said, bursting into tears, burying her face in Myka's neck.

Myka let her cry, but when the tears didn't stop and just seemed to escalate, to the point where Helena was shaking, she realized she needed to intervene. She started rubbing the girl's back and kissing the top of her head. "Shhhhhh, love," she murmured. "I've got you. Talk to me, baby."

"I've always been abandoned sooner or later," Helena said weakly after she got her sobs down to a manageable level.

Myka could have kicked hersef. Of course that's what this was about. Fear, not just trying to get her way. "Oh, Helena," she said, shaking her head. "That is not what's happening. You're being held accountable for your behavior, it's nothing more than that. I'm not abandoning you. I'll grab you in my arms as soon as we're out of class, I promise. I'm not going anywhere."

"You're still not going to change your mind?" Helena asked pitifully.

Myka didn't have the heart to scold her this time, she just stroked silky hair and shook her head. "No, I'm not. But I will show you every minute that isn't science class this week how much I'm not abandoning you."

Helena felt a surge of helpless anger swell up and she opened Myka's door, getting out of the car. "I'll walk," she said bitterly, slamming the door and heading toward home.

Myka blinked, quite frankly shocked as shit, and counted to three before she followed. "Get your ass back into that car. If you want to go home I'll take you, and if you want to behave like a spoiled little brat you can do it in the car. You're not walking home, it's way too far."

"I'm fine," Helena said stubbornly, trying to push past Myka, but the other girl grabbed her by the elbow and forced her to the car.

Myka marched her around to the passenger's side, opened the door, sat her down, put her seatbelt on, closed the door, and then to prevent the little twit getting out while she went back around, she just vaulted across into her own seat, thankful she had a convertible. As soon as her ass hit the leather, her hand was closed around Helena's elbow again. "I'm not going to have you assaulted on the way home because you're sulking."

Helena didn't put up a physical fight, but she stared out the window all the way home and didn't say goodbye or thank you when she got there, just grabbed her stuff and went inside.

Myka sat in front of the house for several minutes, playing the whole encounter back in her head, then angrily shifted into drive and revved down the street. She didn't want to go home, but she'd have to face the music sooner or later, so she sucked it up.

--

When she pulled up to her house, all her belongings were outside. Eyes wide, she got out of the car and stormed into the house, nearly shaking the door off its hinges with the force of her fury.

"If you break that door, Myka Ophelia, you're paying for it," Ashley snarled as Myka entered the kitchen to find her parents sitting at the table as if nothing was wrong in the world.

She pointed toward the yard. "Go get all my fucking shit and put it back in my room!" she screamed.

"It's not your room anymore," David said calmly. "You're your own legal guardian, remember? Now you can be your own physical guardian as well."

Myka grabbed the back of his chair and jerked it out from under him. "You're not kicking me out of this house, David," she told him in an eerily calm voice as he toppled to the floor.

Ashley moved to slap her but Myka was quicker and caught her wrist, then extended her other hand and shoved her mother backward so hard she ended up sprawled on the floor next to her father.

"If you think I knock Helena around, just wait and see what I do to the two of you if you don't get the FUCK outside and bring in all my FUCKING stuff!"

"I'm calling the police!" Ashley screamed, scrambling to her feet.

"And telling them what? That you tried to slap your daughter and she defended herself?" Myka raged. "You have to at least give me 30 days' notice like a landlord," she said, having forced herself calm at the mention of the police.

"I'm pretty sure we don't," David said, getting to his feet as well. "You physically assaulted me and you're an eighteen-year-old deviant. You could be a bad example for your siblilngs."

"No worse than you."

In the end it was Jordan and Kaylen in hysterics that forced the idiots to allow Myka to stay, but neither of them helped her bring her things back inside. She spent the entire evening lugging everything back up to her room, and of course Jordan carried what he could, which was like her t-shirts one at a time or a box of pens. She loved him all the more for it, though. Kaylen couldn't go up and down the stairs that many times so she stayed in Myka's room on the bed and helped organize things as they came in.

When it was done, Myka thanked them and hugged them both tight and then ushered them to their own rooms so she could take a shower.

Once she was under the hot spray, she let her thoughts drift to Helena and the girl's outlandish behavior. She understood Helena's fear of abandonment, but she had addressed it. If Helena wanted a D/s relationship she was going to have to damn well learn to take her punishments without throwing a fucking tantrum. And as if the situation with Helena wasn't bad enough, then she came home to her shit all over the front yard and her parents trying to kick her out of the house. She tried to let it all wash away and swirl down the drain.

By the time she was wonderfully clean and wrapped in a towel she had let most of the anger go. She blow dryed her hair and put it up in a ponytail, then got into silk shorts and camisole and flopped into bed. Only then did she check her phone.

She blinked when she saw that she had five messages from Helena.

4:45 I'm sorry.

5:02 I'm really sorry.

6:15 I'm so, so sorry Myka.

7:33 Myka please answer me.

8:50 Please Myka, please tell me I didn't fuck this up forever.

Normally Myka would have at least given her that reassurance, but after the day she'd had she just shut off her phone. Helena could live overnight with not being forgiven for how she'd acted.

--

Helena was beside herself by nine thirty. She had destroyed her room by ten o'clock. She had destroyed the rest of the house by midnight, and was sobbing on the couch when her mother came home sometime between one and two.

Her mother's date took one look at the house and gasped, pulling out his cell phone. "I'll call the police! Is she all right?"

Mrs. Wells put a hand on his to stop him. She knew what a Wells Tantrum looked like. "It seems my daughter's had a bad day," she told him. "Thank you so much for your concern and for the wonderful evening. I'll give you a ring tomorrow?"

He looked aghast that a teenage girl could do all that damage, but nodded and kissed her cheek, still thrown for a loop as he made his way back down the walk and to his car.

Mrs. Wells shut the door and locked it, then approached Helena and sat on the sofa by her head. "What happened, dear?"

"I've fucked things up with Myka beyond repair!" Helena said brokenly.

Mrs. W's first instinct was to say of course you didn't, but knowing Helena, it was actually possible, given her proclivity to dramatics... and the way she behaved when she didn't get her way. "What happened, dear?" she repeated.

"She gave me a punishment I didn't want and when she wouldn't change her mind I acted like a spoiled brat and tried to walk home, and she dragged me back to the car and I didn't fight her but I didn't speak to her the whole ride, and didn't say thank you or I love you or anything when we got here I just grabbed my stuff and slammed the car door and came inside!" she sobbed.

"Oh my," Mrs. Wells said, shaking her head. "Well that's quite rude, but it doesn't sound to me like it's something that would ruin an entire relationship beyond repair."

"I've been texting her all day and she won't answer!"

"Lord, Helena, she probably needs time to think! Let her be angry for awhile. Patience has never been your strong suit and you need to learn some. I think you've met your match in Myka."

"Mum, it hurts when she's mad with me! How am I supposed to be patient when it hurts?"

"Because you don't have a choice this time, my love," Mrs. Wells said, patting Helena's back and standing with a stretch. "Do you need something to help you sleep?"

"No," Helena sulked.

"I expect this mess cleaned up and the proper amount of money from your account to replace the broken pottery and artwork by tomorrow night," Mrs. Wells said, kissing the top of Helena's head. "Good night, dear."

Helena said nothing; just buried her face in the sofa. She may have been acting like a spoiled brat but it was only because she didn't know how to deal with her feelings. Right now she felt such an overwhelming sense of loss that she couldn't bear it. She literally cried herself to sleep on the sofa.

--

Around 3 am Myka still couldn't sleep because she knew Helena would be freaking out and thinking it was over between them, and the guilt at letting her think that even for a moment just because she'd had a shitty day was eating her from the inside out. She turned her phone back on and sighed when there were no more messages from HG. It just confirmed what Myka's guilt was telling her: Helena really did think she'd lost her.

With another sigh, because really it wasn't fair for Myka to feel guilty when Helena had been the one to be completely terrible, she sent a text to her girlfriend.

I told you if I was ever angry with you I'd keep my distance until I wasn't.

--

The beeping of her phone startled Helena awake not that long after she'd fallen asleep, and she snatched it and opened it before she had even fully opened her eyes. Her heart leapt into her chest when she saw a message from Myka, and when she read it, she dissolved into a puddle of relief, nearly hyperventilating.

--

Myka got a reply very quickly after she'd sent her message. Did that mean Helena was still awake because she was so upset? Or had she woken her up? She hoped the latter.

I understand. I'll probably gush more apologies the next time I see you. The way I behaved was inexcusable but just so you know, it's because I don't know how to deal with overwhelming feelings. I destroyed my house.

Myka's eyebrows shot up.

Destroyed your house?

Mum's making me pay for the damage.

We'll talk about that in person.

Of course.

For your behavior today you earned yourself an extra week of punishment during science class.

Her phone didn't buzz right away and Myka could picture Helena having a reaction. When it finally buzzed, the message sent a jolt straight to her core.

Yes ma'am.

And I want you to think about why you reacted the way you did today because I deserve an explanation better than not knowing how to deal with feelings.

Yes ma'am.

Myka shivered.

Good night, Helena. I'll pick you up for school in the morning.

Good night, Myka. And I'm sorry again. And I love you. It's okay if you don't say it back, I know you're upset and you have every right to be. But I love you.

Myka gave a lopsided grin and shook her head, typing out a quick reply and putting her phone on her nightstand.

I love you too, HG. You really pissed me off, but I love you.

--

Myka arrived early and Helena was already outside, sitting on the front steps looking adorable - on purpose, no doubt. She was in a cute little black and white plaid skirt and white polo top with those shiny black mary jane shoes, and her hair was tied back with a fucking black ribbon. A ribbon for God's sake! Her face was painted like an Egyptian goddess, just like the day this relationship had allllll started. Even from the car Myka could see the way the black pencil marks curled up from the edges of her eyelids and stretched across her temples. Oh, and let's not forget the knee-high white socks. Please, don't forget those.

Rolling her eyes, but really she liked having Helena go out of her way like that, she got out of the car and headed for the house, but Helena met her halfway up the walk.

"Ready to go?"

"You look adorable," Myka said, lightly kissing her lips. "But you wouldn't be trying to keep me out of your house right now, would you, HG?"

The beloved nickname made her shiver and she batted her eyelashes up at Myka. Saying nothing.

"I'll take that as a yes," Myka smirked. "March, young lady."

Helena's smile faltered and her innocent look faded away as she started backing toward the house. "Myka..."

Myka shook her head. "Do not attempt to get out of whatever trouble you're going to be in when I see the state of your house."

Helena surmised that it was going to be a rather large amount of trouble, but stopped her waylaying. "Yes ma'am," she said, dropping her eyes to the ground and turning around to lead her girlfriend inside.

Myka gasped and had to lean on the doorframe for support when she saw the house. It was utterly destroyed. Stuffing was pulled out of the recliner. The coffee table was on three legs, the fourth leg nowhere in sight. The wallpaper was scratched like some kind of wild beast had attacked it - probably the fourth leg of the table, by the looks of it. Very expensive paintings were ripped in half, the frames splintered. Vases were smashed, the television was hanging by the cord over the front of the entertainment center, all of the glass from the screen shattered on the floor beneath it. The electrical outlet covers were in pieces, leaving exposed wires. She glanced left and cringed when she saw every dish the Wells's owned making a mosaic across the kitchen floor. The kitchen window was cracked. In three places. The blades of the ceiling fan were ripped off and scattered around the room. The cords were torn out of all the small appliances, which were in various states of disassembly on the counters and floor.

She closed her eyes. She couldn't take any more. "Jesus fucking Christ, Helena."

"I've got enough money to pay for a remodel," Helena said quietly.

"You spoiled fucking brat," Myka said, turning an indignant glare on her girlfriend. "Guess what your punishment is going to be? You may not use a dime of the money you already have to pay for any of this. You're getting a job, and keeping it until this house is in perfect working order. You're going to open a brand new bank account and set up direct deposit, and you're going to live off of that money as well. Consider your current assets frozen."

Helena's knees gave out at the rush of terror Myka's decree invoked. "Not a chance," she said, shaking her head, her cheeks burning with embarrassment and anger.

Myka grabbed her by the chin and forced Helena to look at her. "Do you want a dominant or do you not? Because from the very first time we went out together you have made it abundantly clear that you want a dominant when it suits you and not otherwise. The problem with that, Helena, is that's not how it works. Not for me and not for any other dominant you'll meet. You want to be in charge but you want me to act like it. I won't. So you can decide right now. You can take the punishments you don't like along with the beatings you do, or you can take none of it. We can be girlfriends, vanilla girlfriends, and that's fine with me, but if you want me to top you then by God Helena you'd better start showing me a little more respect. The next time you say no to me will be the last time I give you an order, is that clear?"

The more Myka said the more Helena's chest constricted, and she slowly sank to sit on the stairs. When Myka finished speaking and wanted an answer, she held up one finger and managed to choke out "can I have a moment, please?"

"I would hope that you did need a moment. It's a serious question and your answer holds a lot of weight. I'll be in the car. Take as long as you need, it's still early." She leaned down and kissed the top of Helena's head, then retreated to the car and got in.

Helena sat there running everything Myka had said through her head, then running it through her head again. Myka was right, of course, as she usually was. Helena didn't want real punishments, she just wanted Myka to spank her and flog her and tie her up, and that was immature and selfish. She longed to be good but was she willing to go to the lengths required to actually learn from her mistakes? Myka had said they could be vanilla girlfriends, so it's not like she would leave, she just... wouldn't be Ma'am or Ms. Bering or Helena's mum or teacher or any of those other things anymore.

The painful throb her heart gave when she thought of losing that part of her relationship made her eyes tear up. There was nothing in the world she wanted less than to have her money taken away and have to support herself by having a job, but-- she stopped her train of thought there because the realization dawned that there was something she wanted less, and that was to disappoint or mistreat Myka or have Myka think she was a spoiled rich brat.

She walked primly over to the car but instead of getting in she went to Myka's side and opened her girfriend's door, getting onto her knees on the asphalt and resting her hands on Myka's thigh. "Will you take me around to get applications after school?" she whispered, eyes on her hands which fidgeted with the seam of Myka's jeans.

Myka held her breath when Helena got on her knees, then let it out slowly at the question and all of its implications. She didn't trust her voice not to sound choked up so she uttered a single word. "Yes."

"I've been selfish and childish," Helena continued. "You're right, I wanted a dominant when it suited me and not otherwise. You've made me see how unfair that is, and I am truly sorry for my abhorrent behavior. If you see fit to correct me in the future I will attempt much more grace. And I will not say no to you again. I understand now the difference between how I behaved and what is acceptable or right. I understand that I need to learn from my mistakes and that is the only way to avoid punishments I don't like; that I won't avoid them by whining or crying or begging or having a Wells Tantrum. I don't want to have a job, Myka. The thought is vile and humiliating because I've not any vocational skills to speak of, but I swear not to complain for a moment, because you've told me I must do it and so I shall. And I shall be good about it. I so want to be good for you. I've always been a good girl, if prone to fits of temper, but for you I wish to be extraordinary. To make you proud instead of disappointed. May I have a chance to do that, ma'am?"

Myka wound a hand in Helena's ponytail and tugged the girl up and into her lap. "You may," she answered, taking a deep breath of the scent of Helena's shampoo. She didn't have words to describe it other than fruity and sparkly. Which wasn't a smell but whatever. "Now that that's sorted... you look irresistible in that outfit. Would you like a spanking before school?"

"God, yes," Helena moaned. "I mean please, ma'am, yes."

"Is that why you wore a little schoolgirl outfit this morning?" Myka asked.

Helena's eyes snapped wide at the tone in Myka's voice. It was unmistakable. "Yes, Miss Bering," she said, suddenly breathless.

Myka helped Helena into her own seat and reached over to brush off the girl's knees. "What were you doing? Your knees are scraped up..."

Helena's fingers twisted around the hem of her skirt as she looked away. "I was kneeling, Miss Bering."

"Obviously," Myka said with a raised eyebrow. "Why were you kneeling?"

"I was... I had a very important apology to make," Helena blushed.

"I hope that's all it was," Myka said, smirking as she started to drive. "The old study hall isn't used for anything anymore, especially before school hours," she announced casually as she drove.

Helena's breath caught and she forced a swallow. "What are we going in there for, Miss Bering?" she asked. "Did I do something wrong?"

"We'll discuss it at school, HG," Myka said.

"Oh," Helena said quietly, letting her gaze drift out the window for the remainder of the short drive.

--

When they were inside the old study hall, Myka blocked the door with a chair, grateful it opened inward, and took a seat on the proctor's desk, gesturing to the row of desks in front of it. "Have a seat."

Myka was so good at the roleplay thing that Helena almost felt like she was actually in trouble with a teacher. Her heart raced as she crossed the room and slid into the desk chair. "Yes, Miss Bering?" she asked.

"There's been some concern with your decorum lately."

"My... decorum?" Helena asked, brows furrowing in confusion. She was always impeccably polite to her teachers.

"Mm," Myka nodded. "I've been getting reports of things I'd rather not be privy to about my students' lives."

Helena squirmed in her seat. "Oh?" she nearly squeaked. Now she really did feel like she was in trouble with a teacher. An incredibly young and sexy one that was her girlfriend, but still in trouble with a teacher.

"Oh," Myka repeated her question as an affirmative. "For example, the marks on your wrists? Would you care to tell me where those came from? And keep in mind I already know."

Helena flushed under the scrutiny. "I-I was with my girlfriend," she stuttered, blinking because she never stuttered. Her heart was still racing. Why was she nervous?

"Thank you, that explains everything," Myka said, rolling her eyes. "Please be more forthcoming."

Helena stared at the desk. "They're rope marks," she whispered, her cheeks on fire.

"Your girlfriend tied you up, you mean?" Myka asked sternly.

Helena tried to breathe. She nodded.

"Answer me with words, please. She tied you up?"

"Yes Miss Bering."

"And you just let her?"

Helena nodded again.

Myka slammed her palm on the desk she was sitting on. "Words!" she reminded Helena sharply.

Helena jumped, eyes snapping up to Myka only to return quickly to the desk. "Yes, I let her, Miss Bering."

"Why?"

Helena didn't know how to answer that. No, that wasn't true. She didn't know how to answer in a way her teacher would approve of without lying. Finally she said in a tiny voice, "because she wanted to, and I like it."

"And why didn't you cover up the marks before you got to school? Those kinds of things are inappropriate to share with your classmates and especially with your teachers. I was quite upset when I was informed."

Helena shrugged. "I don't think I have an answer for that. My girlfriend said I should cover them but I guess I liked the way it made me feel for everyone to know what she did to me."

"Your girlfriend sounds smart."

Helena looked up and smiled at that. "She is."

"I also was told you flipped over a desk in science class yesterday?"

Eyes back down. "Some of the other students were saying hurtful things."

"And that gives you the right to vandalize school property?"

"I didn't hurt it, I just fl--" She stopped talking and jumped when Myka slammed her hand on the desk again.

"Young lady, do not argue with me. What do you think gives you the right to vandalize school property?"

Helena shrank into herself a bit at the scolding and shook her head. "Nothing. I have no right," she said quietly.

"Correct; you don't," Myka agreed. "Which brings us to a crossroads. Do I assign you three weeks' detention to be spent scrubbing every desk in the school?" She stood and circled behind the desk, opening drawers until she found what she was looking for, picking up a lovely 12-inch wooden ruler. She closed the drawer audibly and slowly, making sure she had Helena's undivided attention, then lightly tapped the ruler against her palm. "Or do I bend you over and teach you a lesson myself?"

Helena watched her, enraptured, unable to take her eyes away from the way Myka stood, the way she held her head up just a little bit more than usual, the way she was tapping the ruler against her palm. "Miss Bering," she breathed. "Won't you get fired?"

"Are you going to tell anyone?" Myka asked archly, standing even taller and approaching Helena's desk.

"No Miss Bering," Helena gasped softly. "I wouldn't."

"And why wouldn't you?"

"Because you're a good teacher and I wouldn't want you to get fired," Helena said quickly, her face flushing at the half truth.

"Really?" Myka drawled, running one end of the ruler through Helena's ponytail and letting it split the strands. Helena's hair really was magnificent. "I'm threatening to spank you, Helena, and you won't tell because I'm a good teacher? Do you know what else I'm good at?"

Helena's pulse was now pounding in her ears. "No," she answered, biting her lip and shaking her head.

Myka leaned down and put her lips a breath away from Helena's ear. "Spanking little girls who turn over desks and lie to me."

Helena visibly shivered, clenching her hands into fists on the desk.Helena shuddered, clenching her fists and moving slightly away from her teacher's mouth. She filled her lungs with much needed oxygen and exhaled slowly. How was Myka so good at this? She felt much younger than eighteen. "I--I'm sorry," she choked out.

"Are you?"

Myka's arched eyebrow was going to kill her. She nodded slowly and licked her lips. "Yes Miss Bering."

"Sorry enough to take a big-girl punishment?" Myka asked, that eyebrow remaining arched as she tapped the ruler into her palm again.

Helena blushed to the roots of her hair but nodded again. "Yes Miss Bering."

"How very mature. Quite the opposite of strutting around school with rope burns on your wrists."

Well what was she supposed to say to that? It wasn't exactly a question. She chose to say nothing and just wait.

"You understand I expect you to act very grown up, don't you?" Myka asked.

"Yes Miss Bering."

"Stand up please, HG."

The moment of truth. Would her scraped knees hold her? She gripped the edge of the desk, tension running straight from her neck all the way to the tips of her fingers, and pushed to her feet, looking anywhere but at Myka. Her shoes proved to be the most captivating target and so she fixed her eyes on them.

"I'm going to have you bend over my desk," Myka directed. "Please do that now."

Helena shuffled to the big desk and closed her eyes as she bent forward. Somehow Myka had gotten a feeling of dread to settle in the pit of her stomach... as if she really were fifteen or sixteen and did not love spanking more than most other things on Earth. She would be sure to tell Myka the genuineness of her feelings at a later time. Right now her body trembled.

"You may do what you like with your hands as long as you keep them out of my way, but I suggest holding onto the other side of the desk. Can you reach?"

Helena stretched her arms in front of her and wrapped her fingers around the desk's edge. "Yes Miss Bering," she whispered. "Are you going to really hurt me?"

"I'm going to discipline you, Helena, as you deserve. I am certain it will hurt quite a bit, but again, as you deserve. I don't fully understand your question."

Helena wanted to curl into a little ball. Perhaps she shouldn't have upended that desk after all. "I don't know, Miss Bering. I've never been spanked by a teacher before. I just didn't know what-- nevermind," she said awkwardly, biting her lip.

"I'll enlighten you. You're what, fifteen? Sixteen?"

"Fifteen," Helena found herself answering immediately.

"So that's thirty whacks for the vandalism and thirty for lying to me. You will receive a total of sixty whacks from this ruler on your behind. Does that answer whatever question you weren't sure how to ask?"

Helena gasped, squirming over the desk, and it hadn't even started yet. "Sixty," she said breathlessly. "I-- yes Miss Bering." She didn't think she should argue. She was in enough trouble already.

Myka took hold of the hem of Helena's skirt and lifted it up, draping the fabric across her back, then tucked her fingers under the waist of her panties and tugged them down to her knees. Were she not playing teacher she would have undoubtedly stepped back and taken a moment to enjoy the amazing view. As it stood, she was all business and moved to the side, resting the ruler on Helena's naked rear.

Helena gasped again when her panties were pulled down and she shivered all over when the ruler touched her bare skin. "Miss Bering do you have to do this?" she asked, tensing her muscles.

Myka's response was to give her the first whack, right across the middle of her buttocks.

Helena sucked in a breath through clenched teeth and held it. It felt different. As if her skin was sensitized because of her emotional state of being and her body was trying to adapt to the roleplay. It was unpleasantly painful. The only other time in her life she had felt that way about a spanking was the one other time she had roleplayed with Myka.

Myka slapped the ruler across her butt a second time.

Helena hissed, resting her forehead on the cool wood of the desk between her outstretched arms. It stung far more than she remembered a ruler ever stinging, but again, her body seemed to be trying to match her mental state. It made her squirm uncomfortably and she knew beyond a doubt that unless she could get her mind to un-hijack her body, there was no way in hell she would be able to take sixty whacks.

She lasted until ten and couldn't keep her mouth shut anymore. "Miss Bering, please... I've learned my lesson." Tears swam in her eyes and she quickly wiped them away before they could fall. How embarrassing.

Myka could of course hear the tears in Helena's voice, and was brought back to the night she'd shown up unnanounced and proclaimed herself Mrs. Wells for the evening, and Helena had cried across her lap asking her to stop spanking. That was the only other time Helena had ever asked her to stop a physical 'punishment'. They hadn't talked about that night after it happened, but she realized now that she should have brought it up given Helena's out-of-character response. And now here again, an out-of-character response. She could tell that Helena wasn't faking it, though, which is what made it so interesting. "Have you?" she asked, her teacher tone still employed. She expected Helena felt like a student at the moment and she wouldn't break role first.

"Yes," Helena whispered. "I'll never vandalize school property again and I didn't mean to lie, I only told you half the reason because I was embarrassed of the other half. It-- it's not nice to tell your teacher about things like that."

"I appreciate that, but I told you sixty and you'll never take me seriously if I go back on my word. Why should you behave if I stop punishing you whenever you ask?"

"No, I don't-- I don't know," Helena said, a few tears finally streaming down her face. She didn't want her teacher mad at her anymore. "I'm sorry. I'm ready," she said, swiping the back of her hand across her cheeks and laying her head down again.

Myka knew that Helena wasn't going to make it to sixty, not in this state of mind, but her girl could take more than ten. She striped Helena's backside ten more times and stopped when she realized that Helena was silently crying. The subtle shaking of her shoulders alerted Myka first, and when she stopped spanking she heard a sniffle to confirm her suspicions. But if Helena didn't break role, she must somehow need this, so Myka didn't break it either, though at this point she was tempted. "Are you crying, HG?" she asked, keeping her voice concerned but neutral enough to be appropriate for the situation.

Helena didn't want to admit it but she wasn't about to lie. "Yes Miss Bering."

"Because it hurts?"

"Because I don't want you to be angry with me anymore Miss Bering," Helena sobbed, the floodgates breaking. She knew Myka wasn't angry with her but Miss Bering was, and right now that was enough to cause her extreme distress.

"HG," Myka said, laying a hand on her back. "I'm not angry with you."

"You are!" Helena insisted, burying her face in her hands. Why was she reacting so strongly? It was like if Miss Bering didn't forgive her right this second she would go crazy.

"HG," Myka said sharply, her teacher voice in full effect. "I am not angry with you. I am teaching you a lesson. Would I do that if I was angry or didn't care about you?"

Helena just cried, feeling broken.

Myka was at a loss and almost gathered her up in her arms but was willing to try one more tactic first to reach her. "Did you know you're one of my brightest students?"

Helena's heart skipped a beat. "What?" she asked, thrown for a loop enough to stop crying and listen.

"You actually have the best grade in the class, and your essays are always the most fascinating."

"But my behavior-- I thought you weren't going to like me anymore."

"Teachers don't stop liking their students over a little misbehavior, especially when their students are obviously very sorry for it and willing to do better."

"I am," Helena said earnestly. "I am sorry for it Miss Bering. Can I still be in your class?"

"Do you really think I would call you my brightest student and then kick you out of my class?" Myka laughed.

Helena managed a tiny smile. "I suppose not."

"All right, here's what's going to happen. I'm going to give you ten more, then fix your clothes and give you a giant hug, and then we're going to go to class. Okay?"

Helena puffed her cheeks and blew out a long breath, then breathed in again slowly and nodded. "Okay." She reached for the edge of the desk again and held on.

Myka laid a hand on her back to let her know she was going to start, and brought the ruler against her thighs sharply.

Helena jumped at the assault on the as yet untouched skin and did her best to hold still and ride out the sting.

Myka wanted to rub her back but that was not a teacherly thing to do, so she gave her verbal praise instead, hoping it would comfort. "Very good," she said in a clipped tone with just a hint of gentleness. She spanked Helena's thighs again.

Helena whimpered and bit her lip, using every piece of willpower she could to keep her legs still. It felt like fire.

Myka landed one more on her thighs, then two on her lower buttocks, and the last five quick but crisp across the middle of her behind.

Helena bit her arm to keep from yelling but no amount of willpower would let her hold still after those last five whacks and she squirmed over the desk, whining quietly into her arm.

Myka pulled up the girl's underwear and lowered her skirt after setting the ruler on the desk. "Very good," she said again. "Now come get that hug."

Helena practically threw herself into Myka's arms, squeezing the life out of her. "I'll be a model student, I swear," she promised, a few tears still shining in her eyes. "I won't make you punish me again."

Myka squeezed her back for a long time, resisting the urge to kiss her head. When any longer would have been awkward for the roles they were playing, she let go. "Okay kiddo. To class with you."

Helena blushed and picked up her backpack, moving the chair out from under the door handle and rushing out of the room. She would have all of English and Maths to collect herself before she saw Myka again.

--

Myka was usually early to science but given Helena's punishment during the class, she waited in the hallway. She wanted to at least hug her before class. Maybe talk for a second.

Helena had spent English fidgeting in her seat, not paying attention, her thoughts on Myka and spanking and roleplay and her overly strong reaction to it. She almost said 'yes Miss Bering' to her teacher. Myka would have KILLED her. Thank Christ for small favors like the teacher's last name starting with a 'B'.

She spent maths sitting a bit more still but her mind was just as preoccupied. Obviously the solution was just going to be talking about it with Myka. Myka was a genius and she always understood everything.

When she saw Myka waiting for her outside class she melted a little, because she knew once she stepped through the door she was on punishment.

Not caring who may be looking, she wrapped her arms around Myka's waist and laid her head on her girlfriend's shoulder. "Can I kiss you?" she whispered.

Myka shivered at the request, practically purring down at Helena. "Yes..."

Surprised, Helena lifted her head and pressed their lips together, hands tightening around Myka's back and pulling her closer. When she opened her mouth, Myka laughed and pulled away.

"Nuh uh," Myka told her, shaking her head. "No tongue in the school hallway."

Helena grinned mischievously, but her expression quickly settled into something more somber as she eyed the doorway. "I-- I'll talk to you after class?"

"I love you, Helena."

Helena melted all over again. "I love you too, Myka."

"And yes, we'll talk after class."

--

Helena looked so fucking sad every time Myka glanced her way that she started second guessing her decision, which what the fuck, wasn't fair. So she steeled herself and stopped looking. Thank God they weren't on a block schedule and class was only fifty minutes.

When the bell rang she rushed out of the room and when Helena emerged a few seconds later she dragged her away from the door and hugged her. "I think that was as hard for me as it was for you," she whispered into Helena's hair.

"I don't think so," Helena gushed, burying her face in Myka's neck. "I felt like my heart was breaking every time I wanted to say something to you and remembered I couldn't."

"Let's not talk about it," Myka said, feeling the sting of tears and not wanting at all to cry. "Do you want to go out for lunch?"

"That would be lovely."

--

They went to the same place as the day before and were shown to the booth next to the one they'd sat at yesterday. They tried to make their backpacks take up one whole bench so they wouldn't look like idiots sitting on the same side. They'd rather look like idiots than sit apart, but if they didn't have to look like idiots, all the better.

When they had both ordered and the waiter left back to the kitchen, Myka slid her arm around Helena's waist and turned slightly toward her. "When we roleplay... something happens for you, right?" she asked, trying to save Helena from having to introduce the subject. "Something different than usual?"

Helena loved her even more for noticing it. "Yes," she said with a sigh of relief. "I knew your genius would make me feel better about it."

"Both times you've asked me to stop were when we roleplayed and you were in trouble. Otherwise you'd never ask me to stop a spanking unlelss your life depended on it."

Helena snickered but nodded her agreement. "What I've come up with is that you're so good at the roleplay thing I can't help but be fully immersed in it, and I think my body tries to adapt to the way my mind is feeling. Which, by the way, is not wanting to be in trouble or disliked or... or abandoned I suppose," she said, the last part having just occurred to her. "I think perhaps I just hit the proverbial nail on the head. I'm afraid that if I'm in trouble then I'm just more trouble than I'm worth, and even though it's roleplay, it feels so real, and I just can't bear the thought of being abandoned, not by you, Myka. Not with everything I feel for you and everything we've shared."

"Helena, baby, I'm not going anywhere," Myka promised, looking her in the eyes. "We don't have to roleplay, ever, if you end up scared. Or we can only roleplay things that won't involve any trouble. But you could never be more trouble than you're worth; you're priceless, HG."

"I've never been so in love with anyone before," Helena confessed quietly. "Ever."

"That makes two of us," Myka said, blushing. Even though Helena said it first, it was always hard for Myka to admit her feelings like that. She didn't do vulnerable well.

"Really?" Helena gasped, pulling back from where she had started to lay her head down and gazing at Myka in wonder.

Myka blushed harder. "Why is that so surprising?" she mumbled.

"I just thought... maybe with whoever... you know, whoever introduced you to everything in my mum's shop," Helena said awkwardly. The look on Myka's face made her regret asking and tripled her curiosity all at once.

"That wasn't love," Myka said stiffly.

"Will you ever tell me about it?"

"It's not a pretty story."

"Just because a part of your life wasn't pretty doesn't mean I don't want to know all of it. All of you."

Myka tried to relax, and nodded. "Okay. I'll tell you. Maybe tonight after we go get job applications for you."

Helena wanted to scowl at the mention of it but she knew better by now.

--

Mrs. Wells had agreed to Myka's way of handling the situation but with one change. She would pay for things to be fixed and give Myka the total, and then Helena would work off that amount. She couldn't stand to have the house destroyed for however long it took Helena to work off the debt. So by the time they got to Helena's after getting applications, there was already new furniture and a new television in the living room, so they were now snuggled on the couch watching a movie. Helena had gotten applications at a couple of clothing stores in the mall, several restaurants and a tattoo shop that needed a receptionist/scheduler/greeter. She was actually hoping to get that last one. Working in a tattoo shop could actually be fun.

When the movie ended Helena got up and switched it off, and the tv. "To bed?"

"You go check out the scene and tell me if it's safe to go in your room. If it is, then yes, bed."

Flushing with shame at her unruly behavior, Helena all but fled to her room to survey the damage that had yet to be repaired. Thankfully there was a new bed frame for her mattress and all the debris had been swept away and the floor vacuumed. "It's safe!" she called.

"I'm not gonna step on any broken glass and slice my foot open?" Myka called back.

"No, they've swept and mopped," Helena rallied.

"You should've been the one sweeping and mopping," Myka mumbled as she joined her girlfriend in the bedroom.

They both got into pajamas and brushed their teeth and climbed in bed. Myka lay on her back; Helena on her side with one arm draped over Myka, hand on her chest, feeling her heartbeat.

Myka prepared herself for an unpleasant ride, but she'd said she would share, so she would. "I was fourteen. She was twenty-nine."

"Fourteen?" Helena asked, curling her fingers around the neckline of Myka's pajama top.

"Mhmm," Myka nodded, slipping one arm under Helena's neck to pull her gently closer.

Helena had no objection to that and pressed herself fully against Myka, head resting on her girlfriend's arm.

"She was Ashley's friend. That's my mother, I don't know if you know her name is Ashley, but it's my mother, if you count letting me live in her womb for nine months as being a mother," she said bitterly. "Anyway, she had this woman come over to I don't even know what, probably to bring the drugs they were all doing or something, but for whatever reason she was there, and I came downstairs right as she finished sniffing a line of meth, and she looked right at me. We stared at each other for a second and then she winked at me and motioned me over. I don't even remember what I was going downstairs for to begin with. I think I was just so surprised to have someone pay attention to me, it felt good, you know? So I walked over and asked if she needed a drink or something, because I figured she must want something if she was paying attention to me, as used to being invisible as I was, and she said that's not why she called me over but a drink would be nice. I asked what kind she wanted, she said a whiskey, the glass exactly three quarters full, with two cubes of ice. Me being the studious geek that I was asked if she wanted it three quarters full before or after I added the ice cubes. She laughed and said after. I went and poured her drink and figured it was about three quarters full after the ice cubes, and brought it back out to her. She took out a fucking measuring tape and measured the fucking thing. I was staring with my mouth open because I couldn't believe she would measure her drink, but obviously it wasn't exactly three quarters full and she excused herself from the group and ushered me into the kitchen, and put down the measuring tape and the glass on the counter. She turned to me and said, and I remember this word for word, 'When I asked you to fill my drink exactly three quarters full, and you asked me in return whether that was with or without ice cubes, I took it to mean you understood what I asked of you.' Something about the way she said it and the way she was looking at me made me shiver. She didn't even ask it as a question, but I could tell I was supposed to agree or disagree, so I nodded. I told her I thought it looked three quarters full. She said it disappointed her that I hadn't cared enough to measure it out exactly, and she pressed me lightly against the refrigerator and swatted me over my pajama bottoms. It didn't hurt and it was just one smack, but I swear, it kickstarted something and I told her I would do it right if she let me try again. Fourteen years old and I was so desperate for affection that I was begging a stranger to let me try to fulfill a fucking ridiculous request after she spanked my butt in my kitchen."

Helena was frowning, but said nothing.

"She asked me if I was sure I wanted another try, because if I tried again and it was even a millimeter off she would take me up to my bedroom and put me over her lap and give me a real spanking and make me cry."

Helena made an indignant noise, but she was on the edge of her seat wanting to know what happened.

"I said I was sure, and that I would do it right, and she wouldn't be disappointed again. She told me that that was a binding contract and she'd be waiting in the living room, and she took the measuring tape with her. Fucking cunt. But whatever, I was resourceful and I had plenty of measuring tools in my school supplies, so I made the stupid drink perfectly because it was the most important thing to me in the world at that moment and I wanted so badly to please someone, since no matter what I did I couldn't please my parents, you know how they are. So she smirked when I brought her the drink, but I could tell she knew I had figured out how to do it right, and she didn't even measure it, just took it from my hand and brushed her fingers along the backs of mine and told me to sit down. When I asked where she wanted me to sit since there were no empty chairs or spots on the sofa, she pointed at the floor next to her. I didn't want to sit on the floor when everyone else was in chairs or whatever, but the way she looked at me and not at anybody else made my decision and I sank down onto my knees and sat back on my heels on the floor next to her chair. She started petting my hair while she played poker with my parents and a few of their other friends, and she didn't talk to me but she never stopped petting my hair, not even once, and I remember wondering how she played poker effectively using only one hand, since the other one never left my hair. It felt so good, I didn't even care that no one talked to me, I was just happy to sit quietly and have my hair touched. So when the game was over she tugged lightly on my hair and stood up, and I figured that meant me too so I stood up, and she put her hand on my back and guided me toward the stairs and whispered in my ear to show her my bedroom. I wondered why she was taking an interest in me or my room or anything about me, but I nodded and showed her upstairs and into my room. I should have freaked out when she locked the door, but I didn't. I was excited to have an adult want my attention. She told me I had made the drink right and she wasn't disappointed but she wanted to spank me anyway, and she sat down on the edge of my bed and told me to pull down my pants and bend over her lap."

Helena's eyes were wide; she found the story as riveting as it was disturbing.

"I distinctly remember this nauseous, twisting sensation in my stomach and feeling uncomfortable between my legs but being so fascinated by her and excited that I walked over to stand next to her and my hands were shaking and the back of my neck was sweating as I pushed my pajama bottoms down and climbed on the bed and laid over her lap. I had never felt anyone's legs pressing into my belly before and I remember thinking it felt really nice until she started spanking me, and then I didn't think about how it felt at all because this intriguing, beautiful, older woman was spanking me. She started off slow but before too long it started to really hurt and she was spanking me really hard, over and over and over and I cried and cried and cried into my pillow but I never thought about even asking her to stop or telling her how much it hurt or wondering why she wanted to make me cry. I do remember thinking I wouldn't want to sit down for school the next day because I couldn't imagine letting anything touch my butt with the way it was burning and stinging and throbbing. She must have spanked me for half an hour that first time, I mean I obviously didn't keep track but it was a really long time and I was crying for most of it. My throat was scratchy and I was all congested and coughing by the time she finally stopped, and she let me lay over her lap for a few more minutes before she stood me up on shaking legs and kissed my forehead and stroked my cheek, and then she thanked me and told me to go to bed, and once I was in bed she shut the light off and left."

Helena had been holding her breath without even realizing it, and it all came rushing out at once. "She left?!"

"Yep. I figured I'd never see her again, and despite the fact that she'd spanked me to tears and it hurt so bad and she sent me to bed and left, I couldn't be upset because it was the most attention I'd gotten in one day from one person in my entire life. I cried myself to sleep because I hurt so much and I cried in the morning when I woke up because I wanted more. I wanted to see her again. I especially wanted to see that look she'd had on her face when she knew I'd done the drink right. Impressed, I think I'd call it now, but back then it was just an expression that meant someone was pleased with something I'd done. So, I saw her a couple weeks later in the quickie mart on the corner, you know the one right by the school, because I was getting breakfast before homeroom, and I dropped my package of donuts and thank God I wasn't holding a hot beverage or I would have worn it. I expected her to ignore me but when she saw me she smiled and came over and picked up the donuts and said 'Myka, how are you?' and I just about died. I hadn't even realized she knew my name, and I didn't know hers. I blushed furiously I'm sure, and stammered out some awkward response about being fine and how was she, and she asked if I wanted to skip school and go for a drive. I said yes but I couldn't because I'd get in trouble, but she told me she'd get an excuse to the school, so I let her call them, and she paid for my donuts and we went for a drive."

Helena raised an eyebrow.

Myka laughed and kissed the tip of her nose. "You're being adorable."

"This is the most interesting and inappropriate story I've ever heard. I don't know how to react," Helena admitted. "I'm glad it turns out I'm reacting adorably."

"You are," Myka said and kissed her nose again, then sighed. "She took me to the beach even though it wasn't all that warm out. Wasn't cold, but wasn't warm either, and she brought a blanket for us to sit on, or lay on mostly because she laid down and had me lay next to her and she started petting my hair again. We were both quiet and she just did that for hours, and I'm pretty sure I dozed off and on, and I think she might have at some point too, and when I figured it was lunch time because I was suddenly hungry, she tightened her hand in my hair just a little and said 'Myka?' And I looked at her and said 'yes?' And she said 'would you let me spank you again?' And my stomach did that nauseous excited twist again and before I could really think about how to answer I was nodding. She sat up and had me get on my knees so she could undo my jeans, and I blushed that she was going to spank me at the beach, but we were in a secluded area so no one was likely to pass by, we were in almost like an alcove thing, but still, it was the beach and she was going to pull down my pants and spank me, at the beach, and I was bright red and staring at the blanket under us. I asked her if it was going to be as hard as the last time and she said yes, and I sucked in a breath and tried to be brave, and pushed my jeans down and laid over her lap. Her fingers curled in the waist of my underwear and I tensed, and she told me that the one thing she regretted about last time was not being able to see my skin turn red and she wasn't going to make the same mistake twice, so I just laid there and let her pull my underwear down too, my face flaming hot with embarrassment. She spanked me so fucking hard that I was screaming and crying and I was afraid if there was anyone even remotely nearby that they would hear me but I couldn't help it. No matter how hard I tried to stop yelling I just couldn't, and despite the pain I didn't want anyone to come interrupt because I was getting attention, and she made me feel important even when she was hurting me. She didn't tell me to be quiet or hold still or anything like that, probably because she knew I couldn't. I thought it was never going to end and I had never cried so hard in my life, and I finally screamed that I was sorry, and she stopped abruptly and said 'what?' And I could barely hear her over my sobs, but I did hear her and I said again that I was sorry for whatever I did to make her want to spank me so hard, and I think it actually made her feel bad because she pulled up my underwear more gently than I thought she'd ever touch me or even had the capacity to touch me, and she started rubbing my butt over my underwear. She waited until I had stopped screaming so loud and she told me I hadn't done anything wrong, that she just liked hurting me because it's how she was, and that she was sorry for making me think I'd done something wrong because I was perfect and she didn't think I could do anything wrong to save my life. She told me I was beautiful, and smart, and sweet, and that if I was older she would show me just how beautiful she thought I was."

Helena's jaw dropped. "But she didn't, though, right? She didn't do that when you were fourteen, right?" Please Christ say no, Myka.

"No," Myka shook her head. "Not until sixteen. I wanted her to, though. I imagined it almost every night, especially the nights I went to bed with a blistered ass."

"So it became a regular thing, you guys meeting up?"

"After the beach she started picking me up after school once a week and taking me places, and sometimes she spanked me, sometimes she didn't, and then after a few months she asked me if I wanted to see her dungeon, and I would have done anything to see her smile because by that point I thought I was in love with this woman, and the idea of seeing her dungeon did make me undeniably curious, so I said yes please and she took me to her house. The dungeon was of course in the basement and it was fucking beautiful, with St. Andrew's crosses and cages and benches, and the floor was black polished marble in some spots and black plush carpet in others, and all four walls were loaded with implements of every kind you could imagine. I just stood there staring until she laughed and asked if I wanted to pick something for her to use on me, and I said fuck and she told me to watch my language because good girls like me didn't say words like that, and it made me blush. I asked her what a few of the things were that I thought looked interesting but had no idea about, like the floggers and canes, and then there were things that seemed pretty self explanatory like the restraints and razor straps and paddles, but I liked hearing her talk about how she used them so I asked about them all anyway, and then I awkwardly asked what her name was. She laughed and said I'd have to earn that info by being good and picking out an implement, so I picked a blood-red razor strap with a handcrafted black wooden handle. She told me to go get it and bring it to her and ask her to punish me with it. I know I was blushing again as I took it from the wall and shuffled back over to her, biting my lip as I held it out. 'Will you-- will you please punish me with this strap?' I asked, figuring she would probably laugh at my nervousness, but the look on her face was smoldering, not at all amused, and she took the strap and grabbed me by the hair and pressed her mouth against the top of my head. I could hear her suck in a deep breath, and she whispered into my hair, 'my name is Katya. You can call me Kat... or if you really want to make me happy you can call me ma'am.' Well I really wanted to make her happy but I was smart enough to pick my moments. So she spanked me with the strap and somehow it hurt less than when she used her hand, and I found myself liking the feeling a little too much because when I let out this like... totally indecent moan and my whole body shuddered, she dropped the strap. I turned my head to see her face flushed as she picked it up, and she shook her head at me, tossing it onto the nearest piece of furniture that we were't currently using. She told me I was not allowed to make noises like that and I asked her why not and told her how good it felt, and I asked her to touch me and she said no, not until I was sixteen, not like that, and so I turned on the charm and said 'please ma'am' and her eyes went wide and she clenched her jaw, sat down, put me across her lap and spanked me until I screamed and all traces of being turned on were completely obliterated. Then she took me home and said because I was manipulative she was going to take some space and not see me the next week. I understand now looking back that she was distancing herself because she was tempted to fuck me and I was too young, but at the time I just felt rejected and like I'd fucked up and made her angry and she'd never really come see me again, and my little heart was broken for the next two weeks."

"Oh, Myka," Helena whispered.

"It's okay, it was years ago, but thank you," Myka said, softly kissing her. "You're wonderful, Helena. I never want to make you feel like I felt for those two weeks... is that how you felt in science today?"

Helena wanted to say no, but part of her did feel like that even though most of her knew that Myka wasn't leaving her. "With the difference that I know you'll be there right after class and that you've not abandoned me, I suppose it is, somewhat," she said regretfully. "But it's okay. I deserve the punishment and I'm not fourteen," she said with a little smile.

Myka sighed and squeezed her tighter. "I love you, you know that right?"

"You show me every day," Helena nodded. "And I hope you know how much I love you."

"I do," Myka said, kissing her again, then launching back into her story. "I didn't expect to see her the next week either, like I said, but she was there waiting for me after school and my heart did flips. I got in the car and she realized I was surprised because she asked why. I explained that I thought I'd messed things up and she wasn't going to see me anymore, and she told me that she's a lot of things but not a coward or a liar and she would tell me the truth if she didn't want to see me anymore. The idea of someone treating me with that kind of respect was new to me, and I told her thank you and that I understood. So we saw each other once a week mostly for the next year and a half, but she didn't bring me to her dungeon again until my sixteenth birthday. She was the only one who remembered my birthday anyway, and as inappropriate as our relationship was, she was the only person in my life who ever made me feel good at that time, and I appreciated her for that on an entirely separate level from my other feelings for her. So anyway, my sixteenth birthday she brought me to the dungeon, and for the first time she ordered me to strip naked. For my birthday spanking, of course, which I had not been naked for when I turned fifteen. I was nervous because I had obviously never been naked in front of anyone like that before, but I took off my shoes and clothes and stood trembling in front of her, and she moved closer to me and I got my first kiss. Well my first if you don't count little pecks on the lips in elementary school by boys that chased me around the playground. Which I don't count, so my first kiss. And I loved it and I was hooked, and then she bent me over one of the benches and gave me sixteen whacks with the razor strap, and this time when I let out an indecent moan she put her hand between my legs and that was it, I was lost, relying completely on her to give me what I needed for the next year and a half. She wanted to see me every day and I didn't object in the least. I let her do whatever she wanted to me because it made her smile and it made me feel special that she spent every day with me. Most of the stuff I liked okay but some of it like being restrained, I should have said no. I kept my panic tightly wound up though so she wouldn't know, because as strange as it was, she did love me in her own twisted way and if I had said no she would have never asked again. The problem was just that I was so upside down entranced with her for paying attention to me that I never expressed any limits. And she never asked, which she should have done. And I know she didn't ask because she wanted me to speak up, but I was young and naive and inexperienced and I didn't know how and she knew that, so it was a sick mindfuck of a punishment, really. I never liked pain the way you do, baby, which amazes me by the way, and humbles me that I'm the one you want to inflict it."

Helena nuzzled her nose into Myka's neck and then dropped a sweet little kiss there. "I do like pain. Especially the way you inflict it."

"I would never inflict it if you didn't like it," Myka promised.

"I know that, love. You're the epitome of ethical and I love that about you. I thought I hated it at first when you never strayed from your ethics but I was just being impetuous."

"So the longer we were together the more possessive she got, and the harsher she punished me. It got to the point where she was just hurting me all the time and she'd tie me up without using proper knots and leave the room just to hear me scream and beg her to come back in because I couldn't get free." She shuddered at those memories and felt Helena press impossibly closer to her. "Finally one day I snapped and told her I felt like she was abusing me, and I have never seen someone with such a shutoff switch to this day. She became an entirely different person, no affect, no nothing and told me to get out and never come back."

Helena was crying, she couldn't help it.

"Story's almost over, baby," Myka said, kissing the top of her head. "I was completely beside myself when I got home to the point that even my parents noticed something was wrong, not to mention they could see the bruises on my face from where Katya had slapped me, which was what prompted the declaration that ended things, by the way, and David shook me until I told them everything. Katya went to jail and I went to a psych hospital. She's still in jail but I was only in the hospital for a week or so, because once I started talking to a counselor there he explained to me what the lifestyle I was involved in is supposed to be like, much to my parents' dismay of course who wanted them to call me a freak and 'fix' my 'crazy' urges. He told me I wasn't crazy, which I already knew but appreciated anyway, and that I just needed to make sure I was getting my needs met in a healthy way. After I was able to talk about Katya without bursting into hysterics the hospital released me and I pretended to the morons that they had set me straight about all the 'twisted shit'. But I had keys to Kat's place and I wanted to take my power back so I took the cash she had stashed in her freezer and hired a professional to teach me how to use every single thing in the dungeon until I had flawless rhythm, aim and force with everything. She taught me how to tie every type of knot you can think of, she told me about safewords since I had no idea how to respond when she asked what mine was, she taught me that you never, ever, EVER leave the room when you have someone tied up, and in fact you really shouldn't even stop touching them. She taught me about checking for circulation, all of the safety things that Katya was never concerned with. When she thought I was ready she brought over some of her submissives, each that liked different things, and let me practice on them. When they all gave me good reviews she had me do a scene with her, and I was so nervous I almost chickened out, but I did it and it was amazing, and I felt so powerful but at the same time responsible for her well being, and it made me feel important in a completely different way than Katya had. Lady Zara was so responsive to everything I did, which floored me because she was a professional and I didn't think I'd be able to affect her much at all, but afterward she told me that with every strike of a paddle or lash of a whip or whispered command into her ear she could tell my heart was in it and that made everything ten times more powerful. She said to call back if I ever wanted a job, but I definitely wasn't interested in it on a professional level. I was out of school for the last half of eleventh grade and made it up over the summer, and then when I came back to school this year, I decided to just keep to myself, and then you blindsided me with your British charm and the rest is history," she finished with a laugh.

Helena couldn't bring herself to laugh after hearing the things that had happened to the girl she loved. "Do you think she'll try to contact you when she gets out of jail?" she asked in a small voice.

"I have no idea," Myka said, and when she felt Helena stiffen slightly she ran her fingers through her girlfriend's dark silky hair and kissed her forehead. "You have nothiing to worry about. No matter who in the world does or does not contact me, I am yours, Helena."

Helena clung to her. "If she does contact you I might have to off her, and then I'll be in jail and you'll be left to fend for yourself," she said, only half joking.

"You'll do no such thing," Myka half laughed, half scolded. "If she contacts me I'll ask her not to. Simple as that."

"And if she doesn't listen?"

"Then you're still not offing her because I refuse to lose you over anything but especially over her. Are we clear on that, little miss?"

"Yes," Helena grumped, but she was in slightly better spirits than a few moments prior. "Thank you for sharing all that with me. I'm sure telling that story isn't easy."

"You're the first person I've told it to, besides the small part of it I told my parents was 'everything'." She bit her lip and shook her head though. "But you're right, no, it wasn't easy."

"I will never disrespect you like I did yesterday, Myka, ever again. I'm so sorry."

"Not to make you feel worse, but the reason I didn't answer your texts last night and at least tell you I wasn't breaking up with you was because when I got home all my shit was in the front yard and my parents tried to kick me out of the house."

"What? Those bloody fucking morons," Helena fumed, anger overtaking her shame for a moment before the shame came barreling back at everything Myka had had to deal with yesterday. Not only did she have to deal with Helena's horrific attitude and behavior, but then she also didn't have Helena's support to deal with her parents' horrific attitudes and behavior. She felt it like a punch to the gut and hid her face in Myka's neck. "Bollocks. But just so you know, no matter what I'm feeling or how I'm acting I will always be there for you. If you would have called me last night and told me what was going on, even before I was ready to apologize, I would have been there, no question."

"Thank you for that, but I was too angry to seek any kind of comfort. I just went to bed early. Or tried to anyway. I just laid there and couldn't sleep until after I talked to you."

"I cried myself to sleep on the sofa thinking I had lost the best thing that ever happened to me, but kept my phone on loud in case by some miracle you changed your mind."

"I'm sorry I didn't at least tell you we'd talk in the morning. That wasn't nice of me and it was passive aggressive."

"It's all right," Helena said softly. Then her expression took on a decidedly mischievous aire. "Although technically if you had texted me I wouldn't have destroyed my house, so perhaps you should get a--"

"Be very careful how you finish that sentence," Myka said, narrowing her eyes playfully at Helena and rolling over to push up on all fours over her.

"-- a lovely and wonderful kiss for being such a forgiving girlfriend," Helena veered the rest of her sentence onto another track.

Myka threw her head back and laughed. "Nicely done. I would love a kiss."

Since Myka was above her and Helena didn't feel like having a neckache, she smirked and said, "come and get it then."

"You're playing dirty," Myka whispered, dropping her head to kiss those smirking lips as she snaked a hand into Helena's pajama bottoms and gripped her thigh. "Do you know how hard it was for Miss Bering not to do this with you?" she panted lightly, sliding her hand up further and squeezing Helena through her underwear.

Helena groaned, hating to lose at her own game but she had very clearly lost this one, and quickly. "You're playing dirtier," she conceded.

Myka pulled the crotch of her panties out of the way and slipped two fingers smoothly inside her girl.

Helena arched and moaned and turned her head to the side.

"Being inside you is like a fucking drug," Myka murmured, sinking her fingers in further and curling them up against Helena's walls.

Helena gasped, clenching the sheets. "It-- feels that way on this end-- too," she said between breaths.

Myka put her other hand up Helena's camisole and scraped her fingernails lightly up and down her girlfriend's stomach. "You looked so fucking delicious in that outfit you wore today, by the way little girl," she said with a grin, kissing Helena again while her fingers worked magic between spread thighs. By the time she moved her thumb to tease at Helena's clit her girlfriend was already half gone, and the moment she pressed down firmly, Helena came with a cry.

"Jesus fucking Christ, how do you do that to me?" she asked once she regained motor function.

"I just had to move your panties out of the way and--"

"Gah! You know what I mean," Helena shoved her.

Myka snickered and settled down on her side, an arm and a leg draped protectively over Helena's still trembling body. "Good night."

Helena bit her lip. "Myka?"

"Yes love?"

"You haven't said anything specific about it but I've obviously noticed that after you touch me you sort of quickly move subjects before I can touch you. Is it-- I mean did-- oh bollocks I'll just ask why. Why?"

Myka knew it would come up sooner or later. She screwed up her courage and just went with the blatant truth. "I feel vulnerable when I'm being touched like that. It's not an easy feeling for me to cope with after everything with Kat. And also... oh fuck my life but you deserve total honesty... what if you don't like it? What if I'm too hard to please because I can't let go? I don't want you to have to waste your time on me. I--"

"Stop right there,:" Helena interrupted her. "Look at me."

Myka looked, tears shining in her eyes.

"Do not ever proclaim to be a waste of my time for any reason in any arena. You feel that way because your parents neglected you, not because you really are a waste of anyone's time. You are the most worthwhile person I have ever had the good fortune to meet, Myka Bering, and I intend to spend as long as you'll let me proving that to you. You are important. Not just as my dominant, not just as my girlfriend, but as my friend and as a person on this Earth. A good person at that. If you don't want to be touched because you're uncomfortable then that's one thing, but if you think you're not worth my time, I'm going to have to overrule your objection."

A few lonely tears dripped down the side of Myka's face and dropped to the sheets, and she looked away, ashamed. "There's one other thing."

"What is it, love? I'm right here and no matter what it is I'm not going anywhere and I shan't think any less of you."

Myka's voice shook as she spoke now. "Katya branded me. On my back. It's a-- it's a cursive capital letter K and there's nothing I can do about it." She was afraid this was the one thing that would send Helena running. Why would Helena tolerate her having someone else's brand permanently scarred into her skin?

Helena sensed that the weight of this moment and Myka's confession ran far deeper than any other fears her girlfriend had. "I'm sorry you have to bear that," she said softly, "but it changes nothing of how I feel about you. I'm not such a narcissist that anything besides an H will send me to the hills."

"I wish it was an H, or just gone," Myka breathed.

Helena got up and moved around behind her and started tugging her pajama top off.

Warning bells slammed around inside her head but Myka ignored them and helped Helena remove her top.

Helena frowned at the raised scar tissue in the shape of a K beneath Myka's left shoulder blade. She ran her fingers over it and Myka instinctively jerked away, then slowly settled again. Helena returned her fingers to it and traced the lines. As she scrutinized it she grinned. "It wouldn't be so hard to turn this into an H," she announced, leaning down to kiss it. "And I would gladly bear an M in solidarity." She leaned down to whisper in Myka's ear. "And because we both know I belong to you, body and soul."

Myka didn't think she could have asked for a better reaction from Helena. "I wouldn't ask that of you," she whispered, a few more tears escaping.

"Do you object to branding me or would you just not ask?"

"Those aren't the same?"

"You know they're not."

Myka sighed, wiping her eyes. "I don't object, I just would never ever ask it of you."

"But removing the asking, how would you feel about doing it?"
.
Myka exhaled slowly. "Exhilarated."

Helena grinned. "I thought maybe." She urged Myka onto her back and sat on her girlfriend's hips, staring down at her. "You're so beautiful. May I touch your breasts?"

Well that was a new approach to letting someone touch her. Myka decided quickly that she liked it. "I like that you asked, so yes you may," she granted the request.

Helena filed that information and laid her hands over Myka's breasts, the light silk of her bra doing nothing to hinder her touch. She pulled one cup out of the way and leaned over, taking Myka's nipple into her mouth.

Myka made a quiet noise of appreciation, her hand going lightly to the back of Helena's head. Her mouth was so warm and wet and amazing. The sensations were shooting straight from Myka's nipple to her groin and she shifted her hips beneath Helena's weight.

Helena switched to the other side, laving the same attention there, then swirled her tongue in circles over Myka's ribcage. "Why are you wearing a bra to bed?" she asked, kissing her way down to Myka's navel and back up to her ribs.

"Extra protection from the story I was telling you, I think," Myka answered, curling her fingers into Helena's hair, pressing her chest up into Helena's mouth.

"May I take it off now?"

Myka blushed, but nodded. "Yes."

Helena slid her hands beneath her girlfriend and undid the bra, gently removing it and setting it beside her, on top of Myka's pajama top, then sat up to admire the view. "I can't believe this is the first time I get to see you like this," she whispered.

"It's not like we've been together for five years," Myka defended herself, using humor to deflect her feelings of inadequacy and discomfort.

Helena recognized the statement for what it was and smiled down at her. "You're absolutely riveting," she purred. "You're flawless. I've never seen anyone more beautiful in all my life."

Myka's blush darkened and her eyes widened a bit. "Stop, you'll inflate my ego."

"It would be well-deserved inflation," Helena insisted. "You're breathtaking, Myka. I just want to stare all night."

"You'll burn your eyes," Myka said, rolling hers.

"Stop that," Helena said, settling herself down to lay on top of Myka.

"Or what?" Myka sassed. "What will you do about it, little girl?"

"Cry," Helena said, pouting her lips.

Myka burst out laughing and kissed her. "Brat."

Helena kissed her back and pushed up onto her knees again, sitting on Myka's hips. She let her fingertips trail over Myka's collarbone and down to circle her breasts, never quite touching until Myka arched her back and made this wanting, whimpering sound, and then she pressed her palms over them and squeezed.

Myka hadn't let anyone touch her like this since Katya. And with Helena it was so much more incredible she didn't even have words to describe the difference. Helena, who loved her. Helena, who gave her the gift of submission every day. Helena, who was precious and sweet and amazing. Helena, who she loved. She arched into Helena's hands, her hips squirming without her consent.

"This is the first time I'm touching you, maybe you should tell me things," Helena suggested, loving the way Myka was responding to her touch.

Myka debated it but ultimately decided against it and shook her head. "No, just do what you feel," she said, bucking into Helena's weight when her girlfriend lightly pinched her nipples. "Fuck..."

"Are you sure? I've only done this a handful of times and I want it to be good for you."

"I'm sure," Myka nodded, biting her lip and quickly freeing it with a groan when Helena's hands flattened over her ribs and slid downward. "All I want is to feel what you want to do," she added.

"I want to be inside you," Helena whispered, dragging Myka's pajama pants and underwear all the way down and off, tossing them over her shoulder.

Myka trembled, being naked in front of Helena for the first time, but she trusted her girlfriend and Helena was nothing like Katya and she forced herself to breathe. Helena wouldn't just take everything from her whether she wanted to give it or not. She knew that. It was just hard to get her brain's message all the way through her body, and so she trembled.

"Are you okay?" Helena asked, noticing the way Myka was trembling beneath her. "Are you cold? Or scared?"

"I'm scared," Myka admitted on a quiet exhale.

"Of me?" Helena asked, carefully laying herself next to Myka, half on top of her, head propped up on her hand, looking down into watery eyes.

"No," Myka said, biting her lip hard, trying to will the tears away, but a few broke free and slid down her face anyway.

Helena reached down and grabbed a blanket from the foot of the bed, covering them both with it and returning to her previous position. "What are you scared of, baby?"

"It's stupid," Myka said, turning her face away. "I'm sorry."

"Your feelings or fears are never stupid, Myka," Helena said gently. "Don't turn away. Please."

Myka let the tears fall more freely and turned her face back to stare at the ceiling. She wouldn't look away but she couldn't look directly at Helena either. "My head and my heart know you won't hurt me but my body's sense memory is overpowering them both."

"Oh, Myka," Helena breathed, hand reaching slowly to wipe Myka's tears. "I'm so sorry... I shouldn't have rushed you. You've been hurt so much, I should've thought--"

Myka brusquely shook her head. "No. It's not your fault. It's stupid, I'm just stupid about it, I--"

"Please stop saying that," Helena begged. "It's not stupid, and you're not stupid about it. It's a very valid reaction to being put in this situation and I refuse to allow you to insubstantiate your feelings. It's a big deal, Myka, being vulnerable to someone when the only other times you've done it you've been abused."

Properly cowed, Myka finally just nodded her head.

"I'm going to keep you covered with the blanket and just put my hand here," Helena said, placing her hand on Myka's thigh with a feather-light caress. She could feel the muscles tense beneath her fingertips. "When you're ready for me to touch between your legs, just loosen your muscles and let your thighs fall open, okay darling?"

"Okay," Myka agreed.

A few moments later Helena felt muscles relax and Myka's thighs parted for her. She sucked in a slow breath and inched her hand higher, using just one finger to stroke up and down through Myka's wet heat. "Oh," she moaned, pressing a kiss to Myka's shoulder which was just barely uncovered by the top edge of the blanket. "You feel exquisite."

Myka let herself enjoy the feel, and it was blissful. "So do you..."

"I'm just going to do this," Helena told her, continuing to stroke up and down with one finger. "I'm not going to go inside tonight. I just want you to feel nothing but good and comfortable."

"How did I get so lucky?" Myka asked.

"The world works in mysterious ways, but I'd say I'm the lucky one," Helena disagreed. She stroked Myka for a long time, reveling in the sounds of contentment and pleasure her girlfriend made every now and then. "I love you, Myka Bering."

That got a smile out of Myka and she leaned up to kiss her girl. "And I love you, Helena Wells."

Chapter Text

Neither of them wanted to go to school the next morning but of course Myka said no to cutting class, and they got ready and headed off.

At lunch, Myka helped Helena fill out the applications she'd collected the previous day, and after their Wednesday math tutoring session she drove her girlfriend around to drop them all off.

On Friday evening Helena got a call from the tattoo shop for an interview, and she scheduled it for Monday after school. When she hung up she bounced across her bed and into Myka's lap. "This is the one I was hoping to get if I had to get any at all," she said cheekily, pressing her lips to Myka's.

Myka laughed into the kiss and put down the book she'd been reading to wrap Helena up in her arms. "I hope you get it. Normally I would say look professional, but it's a tattoo shop and I've seen what they look like in there so we're gonna make you look smokin' hot instead."

Helena's face lit up. "Outstanding!"

"And you're gonna wear that red dress I've seen in the back of your closet, but if you let anyone get too close you'll be in big trouble."

"I don't want anyone but you, Myka," Helena reminded her with a roll of her eyes, then snapped her gaze to Myka's with a gasp. "Sorry..."

Myka raised an eyebrow, gripped a handful of Helena's hair and slapped her face, hard.

Helena gasped again, head turning to the side, her cheek stinging and throbbing instantly. She sat there for a minute trying to catch her breath, her chest heaving with the effort. A pulsing started low in her belly but she ignored it, placing her hands on Myka's chest and curling fingers around the neckline of her shirt. She squeezed until her knuckles were white, working her jaw until she felt words would come. She slowly turned her head back to face Myka and spoke in a low, raspy voice. "Thank you for the correction. I shan't forget again."

Myka's breath picked up speed at Helena's response, arousal rushing through her like waterfalls and she rubbed the glaring red handprint on her girlfriend's cheek.

Helena leaned forward, wanting to kiss Myka but not quite daring at the moment. She lingered a few centimeters away, nervously waiting to see if it would be allowed.

Myka thought Helena looked especially precious sitting there wanting a kiss but too nervous to take one, and she gave a lopsided smile, closing the distance and catching Helena's bottom lip between her teeth, sucking it hard into her mouth.

Helena groaned, every muscle in her body relaxing with relief and she whimpered into the kiss because Myka was about to draw blood from her lip and if Myka did that she was going to lose her shit and become a crazy feral animal because something about drawing blood with teeth drove her mad to the point she almost couldn't take the hotness of it. "Myka wait wait," she said, pulling back breathlessly.

"Yes?" Myka asked, that eyebrow raising again.

"You're about to draw blood and I feel I should give you fair warning," she panted.

"Fair warning?" Myka's eyebrow lifted even higher, if possible.

"Your sweet little girlfriend will be temporarily replaced by a wild beast with absolutely no couth or decorum until the activated bloodlust has been sated," she confessed.

Myka just stared at her.

"It's-- I'm not joking," Helena told her seriously.

"I realize this," Myka said amusedly. "I'm just trying to figure out when you ever had couth or decorum."

Helena growled at her and tackled her onto her back with a headbutt to the chest. "Bitch," she complained.

"Whore," Myka shot back.

"If only you paid me for sex. That could be my job and I'd charge you thousands per fuck and would have my debt repaid in a week."

Myka stared at her again, this time with her jaw slack. "Go downstairs right now and bring me up a tawse." She folded her arms over her chest. "A rubber one."

Helena's jaw mirrored Myka's and her body gave an involuntary shudder at the thought. "I don't know if Mum's got rubber here," she said, throat suddenly dry.

"You'd better hope she does," was Myka's only reply.

Helena squeaked and scrambled off the bed, hurrying out of the room and down the stairs to the basement. She scanned the array of straps and tawses and grimaced when none of them were rubber. Leather, leather, patent leather, more leather. Fuck, shit, bollocks and bloody hell. She went back upstairs empty handed because she thought that would be better than presumtuously choosing a replacement implement, and when she stepped back into the bedroom and shook her head, the look on Myka's face almost made her wet her pants (she was wearing jeans because Myka had picked her outfit that morning). She stood there shifting her weight back and forth from one foot to the other, having no idea what Myka was going to do next. It was nerve wracking and exhilarating at the same time.

"I guess we're taking a trip to the shop, then, aren't we?" Myka asked after regarding Helena in silence for several minutes, watching her squirm.

"Yes ma'am," Helena said, turning to head for the front door, body thrumming with excitement.

--

Strangely enough there was a free parking spot almost right in front of the shop. Usually the evenings were the busiest time. "Thought I was going to have to drag you two blocks," Myka teased as she took the spot, parallel parking with ease.

Helena had butterflies in her stomach, still not sure what to expect from this encounter, and got out of the car, waiting for Myka to lock it up and join her before she headed into the shop.

Lark looked up as they entered and laughed. "What'd you do, kiddo?" she asked Helena, nodding toward her still-red cheek.

Helena blushed. "I rolled my eyes at Myka."

Lark glanced at Myka. "That's quite a slap for an eye roll..."

Myka smirked. "It wasn't her first offense."

Helena blushed harder.

Lark laughed again and gave Myka an approving head nod.

"Tell her what you're in trouble for now, though," Myka said, nudging Helena with her hip.

Helena's jaw dropped and she stared at Myka. "You can't be serious..."

Myka just waited.

Lark's curiosity grew.

Helena whined and spun to face Lark, frowning. "She playfully called me a whore and I told her if only she paid me for sex, that could be my job, and that I'd charge her thousands per fuck and my debt would be repaid in a week."

Lark choked. When she recovered, she cleared her throat. "Well, you know where the canes are," she joked to Myka.

Myka laughed and kissed the top of Helena's pouting head. "That I do."

"Wait, what debt?" Lark asked suddenly.

"Oh, you haven't heard about this one either?" Myka cracked her knuckles. "This little angel had a temper tantrum and completely destroyed her house. And when I say destroyed, I mean it needs a remodel. I'm making her get a job to pay for everything and freezing her spoiled assets."

Helena wanted to sink into the floor.

Lark was thrilled. "Mrs. Wells's wallet will thank you," she said, trying to calm her amusement at the sour look on Helena's face.

Myka noticed the way Lark was looking at Helena and glanced down at her girlfriend, eyes widening. "Are you giving her dirty looks, young lady?"

Helena schooled her features quickly. "I-- well yes, I was, I--"

Myka grabbed her by the arm and landed a swat to the seat of her jeans. "Apologize. Now."

It was incredibly difficult to rein in her flaring temper, but Helena refused to allow herself to throw a fit because she had promised not to disrespect Myka. So with a tremendous amount of willpower she quashed the violent urge to stamp her foot and throw things, and instead stared at the floor and mumbled an apology.

When Myka spanked her again, she dug her heel forcefully into the floor to keep her feet planted and looked up at Lark. "Sorry," she said louder.

Myka pulled her a few feet away and spoke quietly to her. "March your ass downstairs and stand in the corner until I get down there."

Helena's hands flew to her face to hide her expression, and she breathed a few times before uncovering her face. "Yes Ma'am." She turned and walked slowly to the stairs, and when she was in the stock room she grabbed a ruler from a stack of them on one table and snapped it in half over her knee, then threw away the pieces in the downstairs bathroom trash and went to stand in the corner.

Myka watched her go, impressed at the way HG lassoed her temper. She could tell her girlfriend was pretty pissed off, but she had every right to feel however she felt. Myka was just glad she had kept her promise to be respectful. "I'll give her like five minutes to stew and then go down there," Myka told Lark.

"I've never seen HG so happy, by the way," Lark said, then had to help a customer for a minute. When she finished the sale she turned back to Myka. "Yeah, so I was saying, I've never seen her so happy."

"Which part seemed happy? The pouting or the dirty looks or the having to body check herself out of a tantrum going down the stairs?" Myka snickered. "Or snapping a ruler in half once she was down there?"

"All of the above," Lark snorted. "I mean it, Myka. Since she's been with you she's just been so much happier."

Myka found herself blushing since she couldn't edge her way out of the compliment. "Well... thank you," she finally said. "I'm gonna go beat her happy little ass now..." And she quickly retreated down the stairs. Thankfully Helena was in the corner. "Can you explain why I heard a ruler snap in half?" she asked.

Helena started to turn around but Myka's voice stopped her.

"I didn't say to turn around. Face the corner, little girl."

Helena snapped back to face the corner and tried to come up with something that wouldn't get her in worse trouble for breaking the ruler but that also wasn't dishonest. She finally slumped her shoulders in defeat. "I was angry and trying very hard not to throw a fit so I concentrated my anger into that one small act of frustration."

Myka didn't let her smile creep into her voice, though she was actually very okay with Helena's answer. "So since it was just one thing you broke, it's fine?"

"That's not what I said," Helena replied, her voice small and borderline vulnerable. "I know it's not fine, I--"

"Shh," Myka said, stepping up behind her and pressing herself against her girlfriend. "It is fine. I'm proud of you, HG."

Helena gasped, both at Myka's actions and her words. "You're proud?"

"I am. I saw how hard you tried to control yourself, and you did. You were respectful to me just like you promised even though you were angry. That means the world to me, baby. I am SO proud."

Helena melted against her. "It's hard to keep from what I'm used to doing but I never want to disrespect you, Myka," she murmured, loving the feeling she got from Myka pressing into her like that.

Myka moved her hair out of the way and pressed soft kisses to the back of her neck. "Come sit with me, I want to ask you about something." She backed them out of the corner and to the bench she had paddled and caned Helena over before. She lifted her girl onto it and stood between her legs, facing her.

Helena couldn't describe the feeling of being picked up and set on the bench, but for some reason it made her entire body pulse and her mind go temporarily blank. She quickly came back to herself and waited for Myka's question.

"Okay. So, how far have you gone with a guy? Have you had sex with a guy before?"

Out of all the questions Myka could have asked, that one hadn't even been on her radar. She blinked, trying to compute the randomness or seeming randomness of the question, then gave a little shake of her head. "No... The few boys I've messed around with I made them keep it in their pants. I was never really into boys, they were just a means to an end."

"Okay so you've mostly been with girls, then?"

Helena nodded.

Myka ran her hands up and down Helena's sides. "Did any of them use anything besides their hands and mouths on you?"

Helena made an undignified sound and shook her head. Myka wanted to...? Her mind was spinning. She squirmed on the bench, her jeans suddenly feeling very constricting.

"Have you ever used anything other than your hands on yourself?"

Another undignified sound; another head shake.

"Would you be ineterested, at all?" Myka asked.

Helena wasn't sure her voice would work at this point so she just nodded.

"Are you sure?"

Helena nodded again.

"I just want you to know that if there's ever something you don't want to try or you're not interested in, that's always okay and I will never be mad or disappointed, I promise you that," Myka said, her voice choking up.

Helena hurried to reassure her whether her voice was going to work or not. Thankfully it did. "I know that, Myka, love," she said, reaching up to caress Myka's face. "I always know that. Thank you. You're incredible. And there's nothing I wouldn't want to explore with you."

Myka moved her hands from Helena's sides to her arms, rubbing up and down. "I know you know, it's just I was never told that and I needed you to hear it, at least once," she said, a few tears squeezing their way out and falling down her cheeks.

Helena wiped her tears away and not for the first time wanted to strangle Katya for mistreating her amazing Myka. "Thank you," she whispered. "You can tell me as many times as you want to. I never get tired of hearing your voice unless you're telling me to get a job."

Myka let out a sharp bark of laughter and pulled Helena into a hug. "Whore," she teased.

"Bitch," Helena teased back. "Oh, wait, I've used a vibrator on myself before, but just on the surface, never inside," she suddenly thought of the few times she'd done that.

"Oh really?" Myka asked, hands rubbing up and down Helena's back over her shirt.

"Yes," Helena laughed. "Mostly after being spanked by you."

Myka squished her. "You're precious; do you have any idea of that?"

Helena oofed and squished her back. "I do now," she squeaked out.

"There's a party tomorrow night," Myka said as she loosened her grip. "Would you like to go?"

Helena froze, excitement pulsing through her. "Yes..."

"We need to discuss your limits in public," Myka said then.

"The same as my limits in private."

"Are you serious?"

"I-- yes, why? Is something wrong with that?"

"Wrong? No. I'm just... are you sure? Because if that's the case then I'm bringing a strap-on and some lube, restraints and a paddle. You're fine with all that in public?"

Helena squirmed on the table. She ran each scenario quickly through her head before she gave an answer. "Yes."

Myka nearly came in her pants. "Okay then. Duly noted." She moved her hands to Helena's face, then, and pulled their lips together. When she broke the kiss, she whispered, "I'm not going to spank you today because I'm going to cuff you to a cross and paddle you until you scream tomorrow night, then fuck you with the strap-on."

Helena's cheeks flamed with embarrassment at how incredibly wet that made her. "You won't need to bring lube," she whispered back.

Myka groaned, resting their foreheads together. "I'm bringing it just in case. Remind me again how I got to be the luckiest top in the world?"

Helena's jaw dropped at the compliment. "Myka," she breathed.

"It's true," Myka said, lightly kissing the tip of her nose. "I feel like I'm the luckiest top in the world. And it's not because you have virtually no limits, because that doesn't matter to me."

"Then what is it?" Helena asked a bit shyly.

"Unquantifiable," Myka responded. "Just a feeling I have that I can't pinpoint or explain."

"Beg your pardon?" Helena teased her. "Unquantifiable? Did you just say that outside the science lab?"

Myka laughed. "Shut it."

--

Helena had been sitting on the bed staring at Myka speechless for the last five minutes.

"Make sure you have your ID."

No response.

"Helena. Hello." Myka snapped in front of her face. "Make sure you have your ID."

"Yes, I-- I-- I--" She stopped trying to talk and just pulled her ID out of her jacket pocket, showed Myka, and tucked it back in her pocket, eyes never leaving her girlfriend.

Myka was in skin-tight black leather pants and she was wearing the strap-on underneath them. She had it tucked so there was barely a bulge but Helena knew it was there and couldn't take her eyes from it. And if that weren't bad enough she was in a dark purple tank top made entirely out of lace, with no bra. Her hair was in a tight, perfect bun without a strand out of place and she was wearing makeup Lady Gaga would have envied. Helena was absolutely fucking gobsmacked. She had already gotten slapped twice for not listening.

Myka gave a sigh and squatted down in front of her girlfriend, putting her face right in Helena's. "Do you want to go to this party or not?" she asked.

"Yes, I'm sorry, you just look so fucking incredible I'm distracted and soaking wet already," Helena gushed.

"You look fucking edible and I'm still managing to get ready," Myka smirked. She had dressed Helena in a black lace bra and panty set, white ankle socks and her favorite black patent leather mary jane shoes, cutoff jean shorts that barely covered her ass, no shirt, and a black leather jacket. Her hair was down but messy; her face painted sinfully.

"But I'm ready," Helena said breathlessly. "What else do I need to do?"

"Have you forgotten our phone call already?" Myka asked, raising an eyebrow. "Look in the bag and see if it jogs your memory."

Eyes wide, Helena wracked her brain for what she could have forgotten about their phone call, then gave up and just opened Myka's purse-bag-thing, staring into its depths. Her breathing came faster; shallower; she reached in and pulled out a beautiful black leather, silver-adorned collar. How the fuck had she forgotten that? She unbuckled it and held it up to Myka, her expression sheepish. "I'm not sure how I forgot that, to be honest."

"Are you still okay with wearing it?"

"Please, yes," she said, licking her suddenly dry lips and nodding.

The feeling when Myka buckled the collar around her neck was euphoric. It was just an object, yes, but to her it was a symbol of belonging and safety and importance, and she moaned softly as Myka finished putting it on her. "Thank you," she whispered.

"Does it feel okay?" Myka asked, stepping back to admire the way it looked. "It looks gorgeous."

"It feels perfect," Helena said, running her fingertips over the smooth front of it and hooking one into the O-ring in the middle, where Myka's leash would attach.

"And the leash? Are you still okay with that, too?"

"Yes," Helena answered, taking it out of the bag as well and holding it out to her girlfriend.

Myka took the leash and ran it through her fingers, then stepped forward and clipped it to Helena's collar, giving a light tug.

Helena was propelled forward slightly and grinned up at Myka. Then she remembered a question she had. "What do I do if someone speaks to me or tries to touch me?"

"If someone speaks to you, you ask me for permission to speak to them. Although really no one should speak to you without asking me first, but there's always one in the bunch. Same goes for touching, no one should even dare try it, but if they do, either knee them in the groin or alert me and I'll handle it."

Helena nodded, liking Myka's answers. "You won't give anyone permission to touch me, will you?"

"Oh, it seems we've approached a limit," Myka said, grinning down at her.

Helena kicked her lightly in the shin.

"Ow," Myka said exaggeratedly, then pulled Helena to her feet by the hair. "Even if you were okay with it, I wouldn't be. I won't give anyone permission to touch you."

"Thank you," Helena managed to say before she groaned at the continued grip in her hair.

Myka released her hair in favor of holding the leash, then shouldered her bag (which now only held padded wrist cuffs, a paddle and lube) and headed for the door.

Helena followed along at the tug on her leash, wondering how she was to be expected to function properly at this constant level of arousal.

Myka grabbed her own leather jacket on the way out, and once they were settled in the car she had Helena hold her bag while she put on the jacket and zipped it up. God forbid they get pulled over on the way and she be arrested for indecent exposure.

--

The party was actually at a private residence, one which Myka thought looked a lot like Tony Stark's mansion, actually, as she pulled into the drive. The valet was waiting in a starched tux, and Myka got out of the car, leaving it running, tipping him a twenty and opening Helena's door. She took hold of the leash again and reclaimed her bag from her girlfriend, and once Helena was on her feet, she led her to the front doors.

Helena was in awe of the house. She had expected them to be going to a public party at a dungeon, not a private party at Oprah's. "Bloody hell," she whispered as she followed along behind Myka, almost tripping because she was staring at the huge glass windows above and not watching where she was stepping.

Myka stopped them just before the doors and turned to Helena. "Give me your ID."

Helena took it from her pocket and handed it over.

Myka smiled at her and resumed their journey, pushing through the heavy double doors to where the bouncers (so to speak) would be waiting. Indeed they were, and quite formidable as expected - three men that looked like heavyweight champs. Myka showed their IDs and paid the covers and was waved through.

She zipped both hers and Helena's IDs into one of her jacket pockets for safe keeping and pushed through the curtains to the lobby.

Before Helena even had time to look around a scantily-clad hostess had approached them with a tray of drinks and snacks.

"Myka, vhat a surprise! Eet has been so long! And look at zis delicious young lady you have vith you..."

"Hands off, Anka," Myka said protectively, stepping between the hostess and her girlfriend.

"But ov course," Anka said with a slight bow of her head. "I vouldn't dream of touching your property. Vould you care for any soda or fruit?"

Myka turned to Helena. "Do you want something, baby?"

Helena swallowed hard and shook her head. "No thank you Ma'am," she managed to get out past the feeling of being overwhelmed. It was all so much. Myka knew people here; she hadn't expected that. And it was so swanky, it was amazing. She felt like a princess at a royal ball, kind of. A slutty, kinky royal ball, but still.

Myka turned back to the hostess. "We're fine, thanks."

"So polite, zis one," Anka said regarding Helena.

"She is," Myka agreed. "If you'll excuse us."

Without waiting for a response she tugged Helena's leash and led them away from the hostess, up the grand staircase and to an unoccupied bench against the wall outside the second floor bathrooms. She sat and pulled Helena down onto her lap.

Helena went gratefully, settling onto Myka's lap and leaning her head on her girlfriend's shoulder.

"Can I hear your thoughts?" Myka asked gently, stroking a fingernail up and down Helena's bare thigh.

"It's incredible, like something out of a kinky fairy tale," Helena told her. "I didn't realize we were going to someone's house... if you can call this palace a house... and I didn't realize you would know people here, but I guess I should have figured that."

"Does it bother you that I know people?"

"No, it just surprised me."

"I think it surprised Anka too," Myka snickered.

Helena laughed and agreed. "Yes, I think it did. So you've been here before?"

"Not to this house, no," Myka shook her head. "But I do know the couple that lives here. Jessica and Orin Grange. Hopefully we won't see them because it would be a little awkward for me, but if we do, I'll handle it."

"Why would it be awkward? Can I ask?"

"Because Katya used to let Jessica punish me while Orin watched, and let's just say they both really enjoyed themselves," Myka sighed.

Helena's face twisted into a mix of sorrow and anger. "Myka, we didn't have to co--"

"Shh, it's fine," Myka shushed her. "Tonight is about you and I, not about some assholes that happen to be hosting the party we're at. I'm not going to let them ruin tonight for either of us. Now... are you ready to get spanked and fucked, young lady?"

The sorrow and anger were whisked away by a sudden intense heat and Helena groaned, squirming on Myka's lap. "Yes Ma'am."

"Good, because I'm ready to spank you and fuck you," Myka purred, nudging Helena off her lap.

Helena groaned again, finding her footing and waiting for Myka to get up, then following along behind her.

The play space was on the third floor so Myka found another set of stairs, and as they stepped through the curtains at the top, Helena gasped from behind her.

It was huge, and elegant, and every piece of furniture was black. The expansive room was bathed in a light purple glow that cast dark shadows on the floor. People were doing everything you could imagine, from fucking to whipping to piercing to branding to just sitting with each other snuggling. There was a tv in one corner playing a raunchy porno that Helena had no taste for, but several people obviously did and were sprawled out in various states of debauchery on the rug or the sofa in front of it.

The room was so big that even with the amount of people using things, there were still plenty of empty spaces to use.

Myka tugged Helena close and walked her to one side of the room with a St. Andrew's cross, which was what she wanted to use and was pleased one was available. She snagged a spray bottle and sprayed it down, then wiped it with a paper towel, just in case the last people to use it hadn't cleaned it properly afterward.

Helena hated the acrid stench of rubbing alcohol but definitely preferred clean equipment, and appreciated Myka's thoroughness.

Formalities out of the way, Myka turned to Helena and wrapped her arms around her. "You look so amazing, HG," she whispered.

"Thank you Ma'am," Helena said with a shiver at the way Myka was looking at her and at what she knew they were about to do.

"I hope you realize we're going to have quite the audience because of how fucking hot you are..."

Helena flushed and leaned in closer. "I think you underestimate your own hotness, Ma'am."

"I can tell you right now, I already know how far into top space I'm going to get, so you need to use yellow and red if anything at all makes you uncomfortable, do you understand?"

Normally Helena would have said 'yes Ma'am' but she wanted Myka to know she was truly listening and truly understood what her girlfriend was saying. "I understand, Myka. I will say yellow if I need you to slow down or red if I need you to stop."

Myka smiled at her perfect little brat. "Thank you," she acknowledged. "All right, now take off your jacket and shorts, fold them and put them in the bag, please." She unclipped the leash from Helena's collar and draped it over the back of the folding chair she was about to sit on.

Helena beamed at the praise and then nodded, reverting to "yes Ma'am" again as she unzipped her jacket and slid it off, folding it carefully and placing it in the bag. She stood up and undid her shorts, pushing them down her legs and stepping out of them, folding them as well and placing them in the bag. When she stood up a second time she reveled in the way Myka's eyes were raking up and down her body.

"Jesus Christ," she heard someone say from somewhere behind her.

"Told you," Myka whispered into her ear, smirking. "I'm going to warm you up with my hand first." She sat in one of the many folding chairs scattered around the room and pulled Helena across her lap.

Helena squirmed to get comfortable, placing her hands on the floor and crossing her ankles. She was about to be spanked in public for the first time in her life, and it was exhilarating. When Myka's hand landed she shuddered, squeezing her thighs together.

The 'Jesus Christ' utterer tried to get a little closer but Myka gave him the look of death and he backed up to his original viewing position. There were a few other people watching now as well, and they all received the same look. She was confident no one would get out of line because they all seemed to shrink back from the look. She didn't mind watching, obviously - they were at a party for God's sake - but she minded leering or anyone thinking they were going to get up close and personal with her or her girl.

That handled, she let the crowd fall away and focused on Helena, warming her backside with crisp, firm smacks, loving the little sounds Helena made every so often. When she could see pink through the black lace, she stopped and gave the glowing cheeks some gentle attentiion, rubbing with the palm of her hand.

Helena groaned and shifted her legs to cross her ankles with the other one on top. She needn't have bothered because Myka stood her up a second later and directed her to the cross. She caught sight of several rapt admirers and blushed, quickly closing her eyes once she'd stepped up to the cross and raised her arms.

Myka fished the restraints from her bag and carefully affixed one to each of Helena's wrists, clipping them to the eyelet bolts on the cross. "I'm going to paddle you so hard, little girl," she whispered into Helena's ear.

Helena hissed in a breath and dropped her head forward, resting it in the cross's upper V. "Yes Ma'am, please," she begged. Her ass was midlly warm and it only stung a bit. She was eager to feel Myka's strength.

Myka kissed her between the shoulder blades and took the paddle out of her bag - she'd chosen a mid-weight wooden one, one of Helena's favorites. She walked around the cross and showed it to the girl, grinning when Helena made a strangled sound of longing. "I know," she whispered, tilting Helena's head up with a finger beneath her chin. "One of your favorites."

Helena looked into Myka's eyes and fell for her all over again, her heart giving a little surge at the electricity between them. "Thank you Ma'am," she breathed.

"You're welcome," Myka said, kissing her slow and sweet before moving back around and lowering Helena's panties to her knees.

Helena gasped, biting her lip, hands closing into fists. When the first crack of the paddle landed across the middle of her backside she couldn't help throwing her head back, a cry torn from her throat.

Myka watched her arch, the sight ratcheting up her own arousal and she grabbed a handful of Helena's hair as she swung the paddle again, another crack ringing out, another helpless cry from her girlfriend.

Helena tried to calm her racing pulse and rapid breathing, but she was too immersed in the feel of everything. As Myka continued to smack her, she rattled the metal on her cuffs, stamped her fancy shoes a few times and ground her teeth to keep somewhat quiet. The fire spreading across her ass and thighs was as familiar as being in public was foreign, and the rest of the world started to fall away for her the longer Myka spanked her. Soon she was gasping and pleading and dripping wet. "Please Ma'am," she begged, voice hoarse and scratchy, tears streaming down her face. "Please... please... please..."

Helena's delicious backside was bright blaring red and her thighs were close to matching. She landed a few more quick, brutal strikes there to even out the color and set the paddle on the folding chair as Helena screamed. She pressed herself fully against the crying girl, the slight buldge in her pants pressing into Helena's abused ass. "Please what, baby?" she murmured against the back of Helena's neck.

Helena jerked on her restraints trying to wrap her arms around Myka's neck and let out a mewling whine when she couldn't. "Please fuck me, Myka," she turned her head and whispered against Myka's cheek.

"Can you feel me against your ass?" Myka teased, moving her hips slightly.

"Yes Ma'am," Helena hissed, the movement as pleasurable as it was painful.

Myka unbuttoned her pants and unzipped her fly, letting the silicone touch Helena's skin for the first time. She snaked a hand between them and pushed two fingers into her girl from behind to see if she'd need the lube. She knocked her forehead against the back of Helena's head when she realized she wouldn't need it at all. She took her fingers out, much to Helena's dismay and vocal protest, but guided the head of her cock just inside instead.

Helena missed Myka's fingers instantly but when she felt the slightly large, cool phallus pressing into her she gasped, holding perfectly still.

Once she had the tip inside Myka's hands went to Helena's hips. To steady her; to guide her; to hold her. "Are you ready, love?"

"Yes Ma'am." Helena's voice was fast and wispy.

"You tell me if it hurts you too much," Myka instructed, then slowly started to inch the toy further in, paying attention to every twitch of every muscle; every sound Helena made or failed to make. Finally she had it all the way in, her own hips flush against Helena's punished cheeks.

Helena's entire body was shaking. It hurt, but not much at all. Mostly it felt incredible. It felt like Myka. Just deeper and she felt more full. "Christ, I wish I could make use of my hands," she lamented.

"What would you do with them?" Myka asked, lips on Helena's earlobe as she started to slowly pull out.

"Crush you even bloody closer to me," Helena swore.

Myka reached up and unbuckled the cuff holding Helena's right hand, then her left, grabbing Helena's hips again and sliding her cock back in.

Helena moaned and reached behind her, grabbing Myka's belt loops and using all the strength she had to keep them crushed together. "You feel so good, Ma'am," she panted, her fingers hurting with how tight she was squeezing her hands.

"Let go for a minute love and I'll feel even better..."

Helena relaxed her hold and wound her hands in her own hair instead when Myka pulled out and slammed back in, over and over and over until she was crying out and coming around the intrusive phallus, her muscles tightening and going slack, clenching and releasing, a sheen of sweat covering her entire body as she slumped against the cross, trembling.

Myka stayed buried inside her for a moment, pulling Helena to her and holding her tight, kissing the back of her head while she kept her girlfriend upright. She knew if she loosened her hold that Helena would fall forward, but she wouldn't let her fall.

After a few moments she gently pulled out, smirking at Helena's groan of protest, and urged her girl to turn around and drop to her knees.

Helena knew what Myka wanted and she knelt in front of her, opening her mouth.

It was Myka's turn to shudder and she gripped Helena's hair while a pair of red lips and a wet tongue cleaned off her cock.

When Helena finished, Myka tucked it back in her pants and zipped up, then let Helena do her button for her. She stared down into sparkling eyes and then in one smooth motion she bent down and picked Helena up, setting her on her feet and hugging the hell out of her.

Helena squealed delightedly and returned the hug, finally noticing that every single person in the room was staring at them. Everyone who had been playing had stopped to watch them, apparently. "Oh my God, Myka, everyone is looking at us, no one else is playing anymore," she whispered into Myka's ear, her face suddenly hot.

Myka blinked and surreptitiously glanced around, confirming that Helena was correct. She reached down and pulled her girlfriend's panties back into place, at least.

"Thanks for that," Helena said dryly.

Myka chuckled and squeezed her tighter, then released her. "Now do you want a snack? I thought I saw some cheese cubes."

"Yes, please," Helena agreed. "Do I get to put my shorts and jacket back on?"

"Do you want to?"

"I think so, yes."

"Then yes," Myka gave her permission.

Helena dressed as the other partygoers finally started their scenes back up. "Would you like me to clean the cross?" she asked Myka after their things were packed safely in Myka's bag.

"Sure, thank you, love," Myka said with a smile.

Helena sprayed it all over and tried to keep a decent face at the smell of the alcohol as she toweled it dry. By Myka's expression she didn't think she had entirely succeeded.

"Not a fan of the scent of rubbing alcohol?" she teased, picking up the leash from the back of the folding chair and clipping it to Helena's collar.

"Not in the least," Helena replied, staying even closer to Myka than the leash bound her. The collar and leash made her feel safe, yes, but what made her feel really safe was being close to Myka.

As they were about to descend the stairs a man and woman approached them and Helena pressed herself against Myka's side.

"We just wanted to tell you how incredible that was," the woman offered respectfully. "Thank you for sharing yourselves and the chemistry between you."

Myka raised an eyebrow. "Thank you, and you're welcome," she said with a nod.

The couple returned the nod and left them be.

"Well that was new," Myka whispered to Helena, both of them slightly beaming at the compliment.

"That felt rather nice," Helena decided.

"It did, didn't it?" Myka agreed, leading her down the stairs to the snack tables.

Anka approached them with a smirk, offering soda and fruit again. "I hear I missed quite ze show," she said, wiggling her eyebrows at Myka.

Myka was about to respond when a familiar voice rang out through the cavernous room.

"As I live and breathe. Myka Bering."

Helena felt Myka stiffen beside her. "Is that Jessica?" she whispered.

Myka gave a terse nod.

Helena eyed the woman as she came into view. A busty blonde with the tips of her hair dyed black, wearing a fancy silver ball gown and more jewelry than should be legal.

"How are you, lovely?" Jessica asked, leaning to kiss Myka's cheek, then the other. "It's been what, two years?"

"Almost," Myka said, voice like cut steel.

"I must admit I'd never expected to see you again, and certainly not with a little girl of your own."

Myka bristled. "She's eighteen, Jessica," she said, drawing out the woman's name since she had never been permitted to use it before, "unlike me when we last saw each other."

"Is that supposed to wound me, lovely?" Jessica asked, hand to her heart. "You well knew what you were doing."

"I was sixteen years old and would have done anything for the woman I thought I was in love with, and you fucked me so hard you made me bleed so your husband could get off watching," Myka hissed.

"And you came all over my hand, didn't you?" Jessica tutted.

Myka could feel Helena about to speak and grabbed her wrist, hard.

Helena wanted to throat punch this woman, but Myka made it very clear with the grip on her wrist that she was not to say anything, so she seethed in silence.

"Giving a little girl an orgasm doesn't negate statutory rape," Myka said loudly, her words finally having the intended effect - or if not the words then the volume at which they were spoken.

"Lower your voice!" Jessica snarled, eyes wide, color drained slightly from her face.

"The only reason you're not in jail alongside Katya is because my parents never knew you existed. And there's no statute of limitations on recovered memories, if you catch my drift."

"What do you want?" Jessica said through clenched teeth.

"Nothing, besides a little respect," Myka said with a shrug. "Just don't talk to me again, or about me to any of your friends. Do we have an understanding?"

Jessica's eyes narrowed but she nodded and spun to walk away.

"That was otherworldly," Helena breathed, impressed.

Myka smirked at her and kissed her on the nose. "Don't ever speak up for me at a party like this, especially when you're on my leash. I appreciate the fact that you wanted to defend me, but it would have completely undermined my authority and been really embarrassing for me."

Helena nodded. "I understood when you grabbed me."

"Good," Myka nodded as well, hugging her close. "Any other time, though, please feel free to say whatever you want."

"With pleasure." She followed Myka to the snacks table and watched her girlfriend fill a plate with grapes and cheese. "I more wanted to punch her in the throat, to be honest with you, than to say anything... but I assumed that was also to be avoided when you grabbed my wrist."

Myka choked before she had even eaten anything and burst out laughing. "You are too much," she finally said, holding a cheese cube to Helena's lips.

Helena ate it with a grin and then accepted a grape to wash it down. "Oh, those are very good," she commented.

Myka tried one and nodded her agreement. "Wow, yeah, they are."

"Myka?"

Another person her girlfriend knew. Wow. Helena was starting to dislike the interruptions.

Myka turned and actually smiled. "Rebecca..."

"Oh my God, Myka, you look... well you look all grown up."

Helena tensed as Myka hugged the woman.

"This is my girlfriend Helena," Myka said when she pulled back. "Helena, this is Rebecca, you can say hello."

The only reason Helena said anything was to avoid embarrassing Myka. She chose to make her proud instead, hopefully. "It's lovely to meet you, Rebecca," she said, offering a little bow of her head as she clung to Myka's arm.

"It's lovely to meet you as well," Rebecca said with a smile that seemed genuine. She turned to Myka again. "I'm just getting some fruit for myself and Jacey, and she's waiting so I've got to go, but it's really great to see you."

Myka let Helena cling to her arm as she leaned forward and kissed Rebecca's cheek, then the other side. "Great to see you too. Say hello to Jacey."

"I will. Bye..." She waved and took her plate and walked away.

"Thank you for being polite. I could feel the anger radiating off of you in waves," Myka said, amused, once Rebecca was out of earshot. "But believe me, if I hug someone, they're not a bastard, okay? Trust me?"

Helena sighed and nodded. Of course she should. "I'm just a bit on edge after meeting Jessica."

"And I love you for that," Myka said, giving her a slow, sweet kiss. "Rebecca, though, was always very nice to me and never inappropriate. She would just sit with me when I was crying, even though I wouldn't tell her why I was crying. And she and Jacey would sort of treat me like a little sister or niece or whatever. They made sure I got fed and got a ride home if Kat wasn't in the mood to leave and I had a curfew. And when I was punished unfairly they always found a way to let me know they thought it was unfair too. Something like that meant the world when I had no one but Katya and she was making me feel like I'd done something horrible when I hadn't."

"I really hate that woman," Helena said, frowning. "But I'm sorry I jumped to conclusions about Rebecca. She sounds wonderful and I'm glad you had her to try to look out for you."

It looked like Helena would get a second chance because Rebecca was making her way back to them with another woman, presumably Jacey, on her arm.

"Myka!" Jacey practically squealed, bouncing toward her and squeezing the life out of her.

Myka laughed and oofed and hugged her back, returning her arm to Helena when she broke the hug, because she found that her girlfriend was enjoying clinging to it.

It was those little things that Myka noticed that made Helena melt, and she wrapped her hands around Myka's arm, moving close again.

"And you're Myka's girfriend, Becs said? Helena? That's fucking wicked, I'm so happy for both of you!" She started to move toward Helena but stopped and looked to Myka.

"She's not accustomed to being touched by strangers, but I'm sure she appreciates the sentiment," Myka said smoothly.

"It's lovely to meet you," Helena blushed. She wouldn't have minded a hug from someone who looked out for Myka once upon a time, but she was touched that Myka kept her promise.

"Oh my Gawd, this is fuckin thrilling!" Jacey shrieked. "Did you guys play yet? Do you want to get out of here and go get something to eat and catch up? I can't believe how old you are, Mykes."

"Give me a second," Myka told her, then moved a little ways away with Helena. "It's up to you, baby. Do you want to stay? Or should we go get some midnight snack food?"

Helena melted yet again that the decision was being left up to her. "Let's go eat," she decided. She'd gotten to play with Myka already and it had been amazing. She didn't really see why they should stay unless they wanted to watch other people play, which she didn't. Her decision was reinforced by the way Myka's face lit up.

"Really? Are you sure?"

"Very," Helena nodded.

Myka picked her up and Helena yelped at hands on her bruised ass but wrapped her legs around Myka's waist and arms around Myka's neck to steady herself.

"I'll take the collar off when we get to the car, okay?"

Helena nodded. "Okay."

Myka carried her over and nodded at Jacey and Rebecca. "We'll go eat."

"Right on," Jacey high fived Rebecca and asked the group at large. "Where to?"

They all stood there in silence, looking stupid.

Helena whispered into Myka's ear, not sure if she was allowed to speak freely until Myka removed the collar. "What about the diner?"

"Ooh. Good idea," Myka said. "You guys know the diner on fifty-ninth?"

"The best burgers in the state," Jacey said. "Fuck yeah we know it."

"And their milkshakes are incredible too," Rebecca added. "Meet you guys there?"

"See you in a few," Myka said, and she carried Helena all the way down the grand staircase and out of the building, holding her while they waited for the valet.

When the car arrived she set Helena down in front of the passenger door and kissed her, deft fingers unbuckling the collar and carefully removing it, dropping it and the leash into her bag. She tossed the bag into the back seat and opened Helena's door for her.

Helena stole another kiss and slid into the seat, hissing as her ass hit the leather. "Fuck me, I forgot," she whined.

Myka cackled and vaulted over her into the driver's seat. "I fucking love you."

Chapter Text

"You're sure this is okay?" Myka asked again after she'd parked the car at the diner.

"Yes, love," Helena promised.

"And you would tell me if it wasn't?"

"Absolutely."

"Okay." Myka got out and went around to open Helena's door for her, then locked the car as they went inside.

Jacey and Rebecca had already gotten a booth and waved them over, and Myka was reminded of the fact that Rebecca always drove when they took her home because Jacey drove like a bat out of hell. That left no question as to who drove to the diner.

"Do you want the inside or the outside?" Myka asked as they reached the booth.

"Inside, please," Helena said, sliding into the booth carefully, remembering her well-paddled ass this time.

Myka slid in after her and put an arm around her.

"Right after we left with you guys I got a text and had to set some fools straight," Jacey told them with a grin. "This motherfucker thought we were taking you guys home and I was like asshole, that's my baby sis and her girl. Don't even go there."

Helena managed not to smirk, though it was difficult. Myka didn't bother trying not to.

"He apologized of course and then told me you," she pointed her phone at Helena, "got quite a paddling. How exactly are you sitting right now?"

Helena turned bright red and leaned into Myka. "High pain tolerance?" she said, but it sounded more like a question.

"You guys are too fucking cute," Jacey said, shaking her head. "We almost didn't go to the party, you know. We fucking hate Jessica and Orin."

"We're so glad we did," Rebecca added. "I couldn't believe it when I saw you. I thought maybe my eyes were playing tricks."

"We always wondered what happened to you and if you were okay, but we had no way of finding out after you moved."

"We drove by your house a couple times right after a certain person went away but we didn't see you, and then like Jacey said, you guys moved."

"I was in a psych hospital for a week or so right after everything hit the fan," Myka told them. "And my parents had been trying to sell the house and move for months before that, so the timing of the move was just coincidence."

"A psych hospital?" Jacey asked, eyes wide. "Were you okay?"

"My parents checked me in because they thought I was crazy for everything Kat and I did." She laughed and ran a hand over her face. "Idiots. Even the counselors in the hospital told me I wasn't crazy, and one of them just told me how a D/s relationship was supposed to work and that I needed to get my needs met in a healthier way."

"How did she end up getting arrested, anyway?" Jacey asked, and the waiter showed up to take their orders so Myka held off on her answer.

Once they had all ordered and the waiter left the table, she responded. "Well you guys know she wasn't always very nice with me," Myka said, understating the situation, "and one day she slapped me one too many times and I told her I felt like she was abusing me, and she just... totally shut off, told me to get out and never come back. I was in hysterics when I got home and the idiots actually seemed like they cared for five minutes and made me tell them everything. Then they shipped me off and had her arrested."

"I'm glad I never met them," Rebecca said, shaking her head.

"They're real charmers," Helena spoke up finally. "Myka's mum nearly had an aneurysm when she saw chafe marks on my wrists."

"Ha!" Jacey barked out a laugh. "I'd have paid to see that. Glad I never met the bitch either."

"It was a scene, that's for sure," Myka said, squeezing Helena against her. "My girl was awesome, though. She sassed Ashley to hell and back and then picked up the pieces after I fell apart."

Helena blushed again at the praise, but it felt amazing to have Myka brag about her to her friends.

"Awww," Rebecca and Jacey said at the same time.

"Then she got us called to the principal's office, though, because she insisted on wearing short sleeves to school that day. The counselor made her cover up the marks and some kids in third period were mouthing off about it, so Helena gets up and tells them she's in love with me, and rips off the gauze and says she obviously didn't try to kill herself, she just had Earth-shattering sex, and she fucking flips her desk over and leaves the classroom. And of course everyone looked at me, so I floored it out of there and I do not believe in cutting class," Myka said, giving Helena a look.

"I still have another week of punishment in third period," Helena said, pouting.

Jacey and Rebecca both burst out laughing. "Fuck my life, you guys are adorable," Jacey said.

"What's your punishment, if you don't mind me asking?" Rebecca asked, lifting her eyebrows.

"I'm not allowed to sit next to Myka or talk to her in that class for another week. And it's the only class we have together."

"Ouch," Rebecca said, looking at Myka.

"My punishment options are limited," Myka defended herself. "This one loves to be beaten. There's not an implement I could use that would punish her."

Jacey lost her shit, while Rebecca just smirked.

When she stopped laughing, Jacey addressed Myka. "Welcome to my world."

Their food came at that moment and everyone dug in except Rebecca, who was just pushing her fries around on her plate and not really eating. "Myka," she said, staring at her plate, "I'm sorry we didn't do more."

"Stop," Myka said. "Don't do that. You guys did so much for me... you'll never know how comforted you made me feel. If you had tried to intervene, I wouldn't have been ready. I had to get there on my own. You were both exactly who and what I needed, so please, don't do that."

"Okay," Rebecca agreed, though she was still pretty subdued. "Jacey did punch her once, though..."

"Oh yeah. Black eye, Halloween night," Jacey said triumphantly. "And I broke her fingers."

"That was you?" Myka asked, jaw dropping. "She wouldn't tell me what happened. Did you guys fight?"

Jacey's triumph faded to obvious discomfort at the question. Her eyes flicked to Helena and back to Myka. "You don't remember Halloween?" she asked awkwardly.

Myka's eyes instantly dropped to her lap. "I remember." And then her gaze shot up to Jacey's. "You did that over me?"

"Of course I did. We loved you, Mykes, and she did some fucked up shit to you."

Myka's eyes welled with tears. "Thank you," she said, then turned to Helena and pulled her closer, taking her hand and squeezing. "I'll tell you about it at home," she whispered.

Helena squeezed back. "Only if you want to, love," she murmured softly. She didn't want to make Myka relive painful memories just to tell her about them.

"Okay, onto better things, how did you guys get together?"

Helena couldn't help a soft moan as she thought about that first day in her mum's shop.

Myka went from teary to laughing in a split second. "Helena," she scolded playfully. "Oh my God."

Helena covered her face with her hands. "Sorry. Ughhh..."

Jacey and Rebecca both cackled a little at that. "Now I really have to hear this," Jacey said, rubbing her hands together. "Don't cover your face, come on, we're all friends."

Helena groaned and uncovered her face, but leaned her head on Myka's shoulder and closed her eyes.

"You tell it," Myka said. "I want to hear it from your point of view. Then I'll tell mine."

Jacey and Rebecca looked like they were settling in for a movie, sans popcorn.

"Bloody hell," Helena whined, but she sat up and sighed, then launched into the story. "So... basically everyone at school has a thing for Myka, and--"

"They do not!" Myka interrupted, eyes wide.

"My point of view!" Helena insisted. She turned back to their audience. "So maybe not everyone, but quite a few people. She has no idea how coveted she is at that school. I've actually seen guys run into things trying to walk and stare at her at the same time. But anyway, I always wished she would notice me, but every time we ever had cause to talk to each other I always ended up causing a row and she'd stalk off in a huff. So then one day I came late to science and she was already taking the test and I asked her to let me cheat off her, and of course she got pissed with me and said no. I told her if I was smarter than her I'd let her cheat off me, and she said I could be smarter than anyone in the school if I tried. Well I had no idea what to make of that, so I followed her after class and somehow the conversation turned to libraries and studying and boyfriends and flirting and whatever, and I followed her to the library after school and tortured her into letting me walk her home. My mum's shop is near the library so I dragged her in there and I thought I was so clever that I would unnerve her by giving her a tour and explaining what everything was used for."

Myka couldn't help smirking at that.

Helena nudged her and continued. "I was trying to explain what a flogger is used for and she interrupted me by saying 'I know how to use one, thank you'. So I handed her one and told her to use it, and much to my surprise she used it flawlessly and left me wanting. I pestered her all the time to beat me after that and the more time we spent together the more I fell for her, not just wanting to be around her because she was good at whipping my behind."

"Myka!" Rebecca scolded, laughing. "You flogged a girl you barely knew in the middle of a sex shop?"

Myka shrugged, looking sheepish. "She asked me to."

Jacey was still staring at Helena. "Nicely played, little one."

"I thought so," Helena agreed.

"Okay, that was fascinating, my turn," Myka said, kissing the top of Helena's head. "So no one in the school has a thing for me, by the way, let's just get that straight first off."

Helena rolled her eyes, then froze, then ducked under the table and ended up in Jacey's lap. "Fuck."

"Are you not allowed to roll your eyes?"

Myka's eyes popped wide open. "Is that what she did?"

Helena wriggled off of Jacey's lap and pulled her knees up to her chest, wrapping her arms around them. "I didn't mean to! I'm sorry!"

"What happened to not forgetting again?" Myka asked, sliding out of the booth. "Get out of the booth, Helena."

Helena was embarrassed to get into trouble in front of Myka's friends, but despite the dread in the pit of her stomach she ducked under the table again, crawled out to where Myka was waiting and stood up. "I'm sorry, truly," she whispered, tears in her eyes. "It's an instinct and I'm trying so hard to stop doing it."

"You have two choices. I can take you into the bathroom right now and spank you or you can wait until we get home and take three strokes of the cane."

Helena loved pain, they both knew it, but she couldn't imagine either scenario on top of her already bruised ass, and she hated for Myka to be upset with her. She burst into tears in the middle of the restaurant.

Eyes even wider, Myka quickly ushered her into the bathroom and pulled her into a hug. "Hey, hey," she said, stroking Helena's messy hair. "What's this?"

"I didn't mean to embarrass you in front of your friends," Helena cried.

"You didn't, baby," Myka said, frowning a little. "I've seen Rebecca in trouble before; it's no big deal. I'm not embarrassed at all."

"You're not?" Helena asked, not daring to hope. "But I did something I'm not supposed to do, and then I panicked and crawled to the other side of the booth like a baby."

Myka chuckled at that. "We've all done something like that, believe me. I ran from Katya once and locked myself in the bathroom at a party. I never did it again after that, dear God, but I'm not upset with you for panicking. And you came right to me when I asked you to."

"I don't want to mess this up," Helena admitted, the underlying fear coming out through her tears, which were finally starting to slow. The more Myka said the better she felt.

"You couldn't possibly," Myka promised. "Because I love you, HG."

"I love you too, Myka, so, so much," Helena sniffled, clinging to her.

"I'm going to swat you three times and then we're going to go back to the table and I'm going to finish my story uninterrupted," Myka then announced. "Okay? Turn around and bend forward."

"Yes Ma'am," Helena said, still not wanting to be swatted at all but feeling immensely better after everything Myka said. She turned around and leaned forward, bracing her hands on the tile wall.

Myka gave her three good swats over her shorts, then pulled her away from the wall by her hair and kissed the side of her face.

Helena yelped at every swat, grateful to only get three at the moment, and when Myka yanked her close and kissed her she sank into the affection. "Thank you for the correction, Ma'am," she whispered, closing her eyes.

Myka turned Helena to face her and waited for her to open her eyes. When she had Helena's gaze, she kissed her lips and smiled. "You're a good girl, Helena."

Helena's heart fluttered; she would never get tired of hearing Myka say that. "Thank you," she murmured.

"Are you ready to go back to the table?"

Helena took a slow, deep breath, let it out, and nodded. "Yes."

"Is everything okay?" Rebecca asked a little worriedly when Myka and Helena were back in the booth.

Myka let Helena answer.

When she realized Myka wasn't going to answer, Helena bit her lip and looked at her plate. "Yes, thank you. Myka is always very fair with me and I know better than to roll my eyes at her."

"I have to admit I was a little surprised when you were suddenly in my lap," Jacey offered with a snicker.

"Sorry about that," Helena blushed.

"I would really prefer you to only sit in my lap, to be honest," Myka teased her. "I know Jacey's hot and all, but you're mine."

"Myka," Helena complained, still blushing.

"So where was I? Everyone in school not having a thing for me, right. So Helena said she always wished I would notice her, which was funny for me to hear because I always noticed her. I didn't talk to her, but I always noticed her. I mean, Jesus, I'm a total geek and she's this popular goddess, why would I think she wanted anything to do with me? So I was wary and nervous when she struck up a conversation in the hallway, and even more nervous when she insisted on accompanying me to the library to do my homework after school. But she didn't let me do any homework and dragged me into her mother's shop instead, and as soon as she tried to unnerve me with all the spanking implements I was in my zone and obviously turned the tables. For a long time I thought all she wanted from me was to play, and I'm not quite sure when we crossed the line away from that, but somehow we did. And I have to tell you, she was the brave one who admitted it first, and I was a jackass and tried not to admit it back, but in the end I couldn't let her think I didn't feel anything for her so I told her I felt the same."

"You told me you were flustered, not nervous," Helena pointed out with a grin.

"Well maybe I was a little bit of both," Myka confessed, nudging her.

"We are both so happy for you, Myka," Rebecca said as she finished off her milkshake. "I honestly can't even express what a relief it is to see you doing well, and it's just an amazing bonus that you've found someone as wonderful and sweet as Helena."

"Can I ask how the two of you met?" Helena said hopefully.

Jacey laughed. "We met at a play party, actually. We were both there with other people, but not significant others, just play partners, thank God, because fuck if I didn't almost lose my shit the moment I saw her on the cross." She shivered at the memory. "So later in the evening I asked her Domme if I could play with her, and she said yes, so I took Becs into one of the play spaces and asked what her favorite kink was, and she said 'anything that hurts'. I think I said something like 'Lawd help you, child' and my knees went weak and I sat down on some random surface and she stripped naked and laid over my lap. I wasn't even sure what I had planned to start with, but the brazen little bitch said 'spank me, please, Miss J,' so I did. Then she asked oh-so-nicely for me to-- what was it you said, Becs?"

Rebecca whistled innocently and when Jacey smacked her leg she snickered. "I said 'please, Miss J, fuck me so hard I won't be able to walk tomorrow'."

"Right! That's it. So I did that too. We were both a little hooked on each other after that."

"That's awesome," Myka said. She hadn't heard the story before because she was too young in their eyes, even though she had been doing everything you could think of with Katya. Somehow the fact that at least two people wouldn't sexualize her had preserved a tiny part of her innocence back then and she was grateful for that. She fidgeted in her seat for a second and then said quietly, "I never got a chance to properly thank you guys for everything you always did for me. I remember you guys taking me home by curfew when Kat didn't want to leave parties, and always getting me whatever I wanted to eat on the way. And I am especially thankful for the times you let me know that you thought Kat was punishing me unfairly. I might have lost strength if you guys hadn't validated my feelings, you know. You were my saving graces, even though I didn't fully understand that at the time. From the bottom of my heart, thank you both."

Rebecca had teared up and Jacey was looking anywhere but at Myka, though they both nodded acceptance of her thanks.

Suddenly Helena went stiff against her side and Myka looked at her in alarm. "What's wrong?"

"Your mum and dad just walked in," Helena said, and then gasped. "Bloody fucking hell, that's not your dad..."

Myka's head snapped to the side so fast she almost fell out of the booth, and her jaw dropped as she quickly hid her face and blocked their view of Helena with her body. "Oh my God. I have to get pictures." She felt her pockets and panicked. "Fuck! My phone's in the car. Someone take pictures, please?"

Rebecca was on the outside of the booth and had the best angle, so she got her phone out of her pocket and surreptitiously snapped a dozen or so photos of the snuggling pair while they waited to be seated.

"Thank you," Myka hissed. "This will ensure she can never kick me out of the house. This is the best news ever, ohmyGod."

Helena grinned from ear to ear. "Blackmail. I love it."

"You would," Myka teased, kissing her.

Helena kissed her back and purred softly.

"Will you send those to me?" Myka asked Rebecca after breaking the kiss.

"Of course."

Myka gave Rebecca her number and finished off the last of her fries as Rebecca texted her the photos. After swallowing the last bite, she whispered to Helena, "is it okay if I give Jacey your number? I don't think I have the stomach to tell you about Halloween, but I want you to know..."

Helena turned sidways in her seat and put her arms around Myka, burying her face in Myka's neck. "Of course, love," she whispered back. "But you really don't have to tell me at all if you're uncomfortable."

"I know, and I appreciate you for that, but it's something you should probably know."

"Whatever you decide, Myka," Helena said with a nod, squeezing her tighter.

"I love you," Myka whispered.

"I love you too," Helena whispered back.

--

Myka gave Jacey Helena's number and asked her to text her the story, and they all hugged and said their goodbyes and they all decided to get together again, for a game night the next weekend.

Helena put her seatbelt on and maneuvered so she could lay down with her head in Myka's lap for the drive home. Myka kept one hand on the wheel and one hand stroking Helena's hair.

When she pulled in front of Helena's house, the lights were on. "Uh... your mom's home," she announced. "And there's a random car in the driveway."

"What time is it?"

Myka glanced at the clock. "One forty-five."

"Yeah, that sounds about right. Except she doesn't usually bring men over. Once in a blue moon, really."

After she turned off the engine, Myka's ears picked up the faint sound of music. "Do you hear that?"

Helena sat up and took her seatbelt off, straining to listen. "Christ, is that Iggy Azalea? What the bloody fuck is she doing in there?"

Myka didn't have time to suggest that they might not want to know before Helena was out of the car and through the front door. She hurried to catch up in case of flying objects. But Mrs. Wells was just in the living room dancing with a guy in a suit.

Helena blinked and shook her head. "What am I seeing?"

Mrs. Wells finally noticed them and shut off the stereo. "Hello, dears! This is Linus. I was going to introduce him to you the other day, Helena, but you were a bit indisposed, as was the house," she said pointedly.

Linus, to his credit, gave no outward indication of being shocked at the young ladies' attire, and simply nodded his head to them. "Pleased to meet you ladies."

Helena couldn't wrap her mind around the fact that her mother had gone out with the same man more than once, and just stood there staring.

Myka spoke for both of them. "Nice to meet you too, Linus. I'm Myka and this is Jacqueline's daughter Helena. Give us a minute to get changed, if you don't mind?"

"Of course," he said, nodding again.

Myka propelled Helena to her bedroom and to the closet. "Find something appropriate to wear," she told her girlfriend as she found something in her own pile of clothes for herself and changed, then went into Helena's bathroom and washed the makeup off her face. She took her hair out and combed her fingers through it roughly to make it presentable. When she came out of the bathroom Helena was still standing there staring at the door. "Helena! Do you need a smack?" she asked, taking her by the arm.

"No!" Helena said, scrambling to find something to wear. "I'm just... she's never gone out with the same guy twice. I'm like... unnerved. And she's never introduced anyone to me."

"It's okay, baby, just get dressed and wash your face. I'm right here."

Helena nodded and took a calming breath, then changed into flannel pajamas and washed her face.

Satisfied that they both looked like typical eighteen-year-olds and not clubgoing deviants (not that there was anything wrong with being clubgoing deviants, but when meeting a parental figure's potential boyfriend, she'd like to avoid it) she kissed Helena's forehead and took her hand and led her back out to the living room.

Mrs. Wells and Linus were in the kitchen having tea, so Myka directed them in there and the girls took a seat at the kitchen table. The new kitchen table. The new kitchen table that shouldn't have had to be new since there had been nothing wrong with the old one pre-destruction.

"Would you girls like some tea?" Jacqueline asked.

"Yes, please, thank you," Myka said, and Helena just nodded wordlessly.

Mrs. Wells served them each a mug and retook her seat.

"This is awkward," Helena finally said, dipping her tea bag in and out of her mug repeatedly.

Myka kicked her under the table. "So Linus, how long have you known Jacqueline?"

"A few months now," he said, obviously not sure what to make of Helena. "But we've only been seeing each other for a couple of weeks."

Helena choked on her tea. Go figure, she'd finally taken a sip and he says that. She spluttered and coughed and when Myka kicked her again under the table she scowled briefly and came up with an excuse for choking. "Mum, it's too hot!" she lied.

Myka scooted her chair right up next to Helena's under the pretense of checking on her. "Are you okay baby?" she asked, then whispered so only Helena could hear her, "you're acting like a child and are about to be sent to bed."

"I'm fine, I'm fine, I just didn't expect it to be so hot still," Helena said, coughing a few more times for show.

Myka patted her back and moved her chair back where it belonged. "Well congratulations," she then directed the conversation to where it had been before Helena's choking fit. "Did you meet through the shop, or just randomly, or somewhere else?" she asked.

"Through the shop," Jacqueline said, rather glad for Myka's manners. She would be sure to thank her later.

"Awesome," Myka said, grinning. "Don't worry, I won't ask what you bought."

Linus laughed, shaking his head. "I wouldn't tell you if you did."

"Great, you might be a total perv but at least you're not a pedophile," Helena muttered.

Mrs. Wells opened her mouth to speak but Myka beat her to it, getting to her feet and actually raising her voice to her girlfriend. "Helena, get your ass to bed. NOW!"

Helena barely kept herself from throwing the mug of tea at the wall, but she did stand up sharply enough to knock her chair over behind her and stalked haughtily off to her room.

"Excuse me for one second, and please leave the chair," Myka said, holding up a finger, not happy she had to do all of this in front of Helena's mother and boyfriend. She followed Helena to the bedroom, took her by the arm and spanked her until she cried, then turned her around. "You march your ass back out there, pick up that chair, push it in properly to the table and get yourself into bed. And I mean now."

Chest heaving with sobs, cheeks red from embarrassment, Helena hurried out and righted the chair, then returned to her bedroom and got in bed, crying into her pillow.

"It was not fair for you to make me do that in front of them," Myka said, and left the room, closing the door gently behind her. She felt like crying herself. Jesus, Helena's attitude sometimes was so left field. She understood being unnerved, but calling her mother's new boyfriend a pervert was just not okay no matter how you looked at it. She was embarrassed to return to the table, but she did. "I would say sorry, but that wouldn't begin to cover it," she told them both.

"I think you covered it just fine," Jacqueline said. "Better than I would have. You got her to pick up the chair."

"It's all right," Linus said. "I didn't expect quite that level of hostility but I didn't expect her to be excited, either."

"It takes her awhile to adjust to things sometimes," Mrs. Wells sighed. "I should have told her beforehand. I guess I had just hoped she was growing up."

"She is," Myka offered. "Just... not about everything at once."

"That's true, dear," Jacqueline agreed. "You're so very good with her. To her. I should say 'to her', especially if I don't want her acting like a child. You're very good to her. Thank you, Myka. You're a treasured addition to our family."

Myka felt emotions welling up in her chest and she didn't know what to say to that besides thank you, so she just said "thank you," and leaned over to hug Jacqueline. "If it's not rude, I think I'll head to bed, too," she said, picking up hers and Helena's tea mugs and taking them to the sink.

"Of course not, dear. Good night."

"Good night," Myka said. "It was nice to meet you, Linus. Helena will be infinitely more well behaved the next time you see her."

"Don't worry about it," he said, shaking his head. "Good night Myka."

She gave them both a lopsided grin and disappeared into Helena's bedroom, closing the door behind her.

Helena had stopped crying but Myka could tell she wasn't asleep both from the short amount of time she'd been out of the room and from Helena's rigid body language. Myka figured she probably expected to be yelled at some more or ignored, but she wasn't going to do either. She slid under the covers and pressed herself to Helena's back, draping an arm over Helena's stomach and pulling her close.

"Myka I--"

"Shh," Myka interrupted, kissing the shell of her ear. "Just listen." When she felt Helena relax, she continued. "I know it was weird for you. I know your feelings are hurt at the amount of time she spends with men, and to have it be with the same man more than once is even more hurtful. I know you want her to be more like a mom and less like a friend. And tomorrow you're going to sit down and tell her these things, because I know you never have. Am I right about that?"

Helena nodded.

"Okay. You're going to tell her how you feel, baby, and you're not going to mask your hurt with anger. For all her worldliness, your mother doesn't know how you feel. For some reason she can't see past your behavior to the reason behind it, so you need to be honest. If she blows you off then by all means, be angry. But not until you've tried. Agreed?"

Helena nodded again, feeling small and vulnerable without her anger to hide behind. "What if she doesn't care?"

And that, Myka knew, was the root of the problem. Helena didn't express herself because she was afraid Jacqueline wouldn't care, and that would hurt worse than bottling everything up and never expressing it to begin with. "I hope that's not the case, but if it is, I'll be right here, and I care."

Helena nodded yet again, and took a shaky breath. "Are you sure you want to be with me, Myka? I'm not too difficult to deal with? I embarrassed you, I know that, and it makes me feel sick inside."

"Your behavior was very embarrassing, that's true," Myka agreed. "But I don't think of you in terms of being difficult or not difficult to deal with. That doesn't cross my mind. I think of you as my girlfriend, who I love, who sometimes I have to discipline because we both need it. Never do I think you're too difficult; never would I not want to be with you. While we're at it, are you sure you want to be with me? My past is more fucked than your average person's and I can't even let you touch me for God's sake. You don't think that's too difficult to deal with?"

"No," Helena said, her voice pained. "Of course it isn't. I love you and I don't care how fucked your past is, I only care that I can help you heal from it. And I'll touch you when you're ready. I don't care about that. You're the most amazing person I've ever met. I want to be with you always."

"Okay then. So you understand we don't think of each other in terms of difficulty? That that goes both ways?"

"Yes, thank you," Helena said quietly. "Do you think he's still here for me to apologize?"

"Maybe, but I don't want you to apologize until after you talk to your mom tomorrow."

"Oh. Okay," Helena nodded. "I suppose that makes sense."

"I love you, you fucking little brat," Myka said fondly, breathing in the scent of Helena's hair.

"And I love you, you big meanie who spanked me on a bruised bottom and made me pick up a chair while I was crying."

Myka slid a hand into Helena's pajama bottoms and rubbed her backside tenderly.

"I don't deserve that," Helena whispered. "But thank you, Myka, it feels lovely."

"Hey... I get to decide what you deserve, don't I?" Myka asked, nuzzling the back of her neck and dropping a kiss there.

"You're right, of course," Helena purred. "Thank you for thinking I deserve it, and for always treating me right even when I'm awful."

"I will always treat you right, no matter what," Myka promised. She wound down the rubbing and pulled her hand out of Helena's pajamas, wrapping it around her again instead.

Helena was quiet for a minute and then said "Myka?"

"Yes, love?"

"I got some texts from Jacey but I didn't read them yet. I didn't want to read them while I was in trouble."

Myka's first instinct was to physically draw away, but she forced herself to stay where she was. "You can read them now," she said, doing her best to keep her voice casual, but it shook. "It's the night I got my brand," she added in a tiny whisper.

"Are you sure it's okay?" Helena asked one last time, rolling onto her back so she could see Myka's face.

Myka just nodded, but her hand tightened around Helena's hip as she did.

Helena took her phone from the nightstand and navigated into the texts from Jacey, then scrolled to the beginning.

Hey little one, it's Jacey here. Hope you have a strong stomach. Myka wants me to tell you the story about why I punched that fucking cunt in the face and broke her fingers, so here goes.

It was Halloween, obviously. Some rich fuck or another was throwing a party as usual and everything was fine until Kat insisted that Myka was flirting with some other girl, which was total bullshit by the way because Myka never flirted with anyone, ever. She wasn't that kind of girl. So Kat was screaming at her about it and Myka was crying and swearing she would never do that, and telling Kat she loved her and would never disrespect her like that, but Kat was having none of it and slapped her so hard she split Mykes's lip. As if that wasn't bad enough she took off

Helena stopped reading for a second to breathe in between messages.

Myka's shirt and bra and tied her to one of the crosses and told her who she belonged to and she would soon never be able to forget that. I was a little nervous but you don't just step in unless someone's in grave danger or they've used their safeword and their Dom/me isn't honoring it, but Becs and I stayed close by because neither of us trusted Katya. She left Mykes tied up while she disappeared for I don't know like ten minutes maybe? When she came back she was holding a red hot brand and she grabbed Myka by the hair and pressed it under her shoulder

blade. Mykes screamed bloody murder and kept saying she was sorry and that she'd never do anything wrong ever again, and Kat just told her to shut up and not speak for the rest of the night, and to stop screaming because it hurt her ears. God I wanted to do something. Becs was crying and begging me to intervene but there's rules, you know. Myka bit herself in the arm to stop screaming, but she was shaking and sweating and fucking Katya picked up a flogger and started beating her right over the blistering K on her back and Mykes begged her to stop

and after a few minutes she passed out. Kat wasn't about to stop and that was grave enough danger for me and I grabbed her wrist and told her that was enough. She told me to fuck off and I told her if she hit Myka one more time instead of taking care of her I would break her fucking hand. She tried to hit her again and I cold-cocked her in the face, jumped on her as she went down and slammed the hand with the flogger so hard against the floor I heard a cracking sound and she screamed, taking a swing at me with her good hand, and by then the DM came over and

broke it up, and Kat spit on the ground in front of me and said if I wanted Myka that bad I could take care of her myself, and she left. Becs and I carefully untied Mykes and took her home with us to treat the wound, but it got infected anyway and we had to pretend to be her mothers and take her to the hospital the next day. She got antibiotics and thank God she was okay but her heart was broken that Kat didn't come see her in the hospital and even texted her saying not to come over until she was better.

Helena wiped at her eyes, blinking back fresh tears as she read the last message.

I'm glad she has you, little one. I think you're already fixing what Kat broke.

"I'm sorry, Myka," she whispered. "I'm sorry that that kind of love was the most you'd ever gotten, and I can only hope that I show you how wonderful you are every single day; how much you really, truly mean to me and how important you are to me and to the world. There will never be a time when I don't see you, Myka. You're the best thing that's ever happened to me and I'll spend eternity trying to make you feel everything that she didn't. That she couldn't. Because she didn't know how. She was a broken person and that's why she couldn't love you the way you deserved... not because you were flawed, but because she was. Myka you mean so much to me, I can't even express it with words, I--" She stopped trying to talk and just wrapped her shaking girlfriend up in her arms and held her so tight they could hardly breathe. And then she added quickly, "and if you were ever in the hospital they would have to pry me out of your bed any time they needed to do something for you, do you hear me?"

Myka nodded, burying her face in Helena's neck and just letting herself be held. After a long, long time, probably upwards of a half hour, she said something. "Helena, you're the best thing that's ever happened to me, too."

Chapter Text

They both slept in, grumbling and rolling out of bed around noon and getting ready to head to the shop so Helena could talk to her mother.

They brushed their teeth and their hair, Myka got into jeans and a tank top and Helena of course got into a black dress, and they made out for a few minutes before locking up the house and leaving.

--

Myka left Helena talking to Lark and wandered up the stairs to the office. She knocked on the open door and peeked her head in, and Jacqueline smiled at her so she stepped inside. "Hey," she said, shoving her hands in the pockets of her jeans.

"Hey yourself."

"So Helena has something to talk to you about."

"I hope it's an apology for her behavior last night."

"She'll get to that, but there's something else first. And I just want you to know that she's completely terrified that you won't care about what she has to say, so please keep her fears in mind when she's talking, if you could?"

Intrigued, Jacqueline raised an eyebrow but nodded. "Very well," she said, just as Helena ascended the stairs and joined them.

Myka put a hand on her back for reassurance and closed the door, then sat with Helena on the loveseat across from Mrs. Wells's desk.

Helena started playing with the hem of her dress, staring at the floor, the butterflies in her stomach rampant and relentless.

Jacqueline took Myka's forewarning to heart and waited patiently for her daughter to start talking.

"Mum... it hurts my feelings that you've always spent more time with men than with me and then when I found out it was just one man for the last couple weeks it hurt even more," she finally said quickly. "And I'm afraid you won't take me seriously or you won't care enough about my feelings so I protect myself by getting angry and throwing a fit because it's easier," she continued in a rush, her eyes never leaving the floor.

Jacqueline was stunned, and now Myka's warning made sense. She got up from the desk and went to sit next to her daughter, on the side Myka wasn't occupying, obviously. "HG," she said, not even sure where to start. "I don't understand what made you think I wouldn't care about your feelings, but of course I care. I never want to hurt your feelings, my darling, and didn't know I was. You've always been very good at taking care of yourself and you've long since professed your independence. I mean I can't change overnight, but I'll work on it. I love you, Helena. I'm not perfect, Lord knows, but your feelings have always mattered... you just so rarely share them."

Helena felt like a thousand pound weight had been lifted off her shoulders and she sighed with relief, able to breathe normally again. "I'm sorry about last night. My behavior was atrocious and I'd like to apologize to Linus if he ever even wants to see me again... It wasn't his fault and I was a nasty little brat and I'm sorry."

"You were, but now I understand why," Jacqueline said, and Myka thought it was the first time she'd ever seen Mrs. Wells look defeated. "I'm sorry too, my darling. And I'm sure Linus will want to see you again." She kissed the top of Helena's head. "Why don't you girls stay a bit and help me out with inventory, would you?"

"Sure, Mum."

"Of course, Mrs. Wells."

"No no no," Jacqueline said, shaking her head. "No more Mrs. Wells. I told you, you're family. It's Mum or Jackie. Or Mom, as you Americans say."

"I'll probably go with Jackie," Myka blushed. "What section do you want us to inventory?"

"Whatever you like; nothing's done yet."

"Paddles," Helena said and high fived Myka.

"Score," Myka agreed.

Jacqueline rolled her eyes and shook her head.

"See where I get it?!" Helena nearly shrieked, grabbing Myka's arm.

Myka couldn't help laughing, and stage whispered to Jacqueline, "she's not allowed to do that. Please don't encourage such bad behavior."

"Is that so?" Jacqueline raised her eyebrows. "My daughter, not allowed to roll her eyes? That is quite an undertaking, Miss Myka."

"I know," Myka groaned.

"So does my face," Helena pouted. "And my ass."

"Language, dear..." Mrs. Wells said, standing and returning to sit at her desk.

"Really, Mum? Ass?"

"Yes, dear."

Myka laughed and propelled Helena out of the office and down the stairs with a firm grip on her hips.

They inventoried the spanking section until around dinnertime, then handed in their spreadsheets. They were almost out the door when Jacqueline's voice rang out from the office doorway. "Helena..."

Helena stopped and turned. "Yes Mum?"

Mrs. Wells descended the stairs and stood in front of her daughter with her hands on her hips. "It looks like you were about to leave without hugging me goodbye..."

Helena's jaw wanted to drop but she kept it shut and just hugged her mother gratefully. "Thanks," she said when they pulled apart.

"I love you, dear," Mrs. Wells said quietly. She wrangled Myka into a hug as well and then let the girls go.

--

They had to postpone their math lesson after school the next day so Helena could make her interview on time. Myka had fished the red dress she wanted her girl to wear out of the back of the closet, then spent fifteen minutes getting Helena's hair to look grunge. "Amazing," she said, pinching Helena's nipples through her dress and bra. "Oh, wear those red shoes you wore the day I caned you."

Helena squawked at the pinch, then spun to dig the shoes out of the inordinately large pile that she owned. She found them and put them on, then stood and twirled in a circle for Myka. "Do I have your approval?"

Myka grabbed her by the hips and crushed their lips together. "You definitely fucking do," she grinned. "Are you ready to go?"

"Mhmm."

"You know we're coming straight back here after the interview and factoring polynomials, right?"

To her credit, Helena didn't even groan or make a face. She was actually enjoying the maths lessons since Myka taught her in a way that made sense to her. "Can't wait," she said.

"I like your enthusiasm."

--

"How did it go?" Myka asked as soon as Helena got in the car.

"Really well I think," Helena beamed. "And I got three compliments on my shoes, so thank you for that. I also got an offer of a free tattoo but I told the guy he'd have to go through you first and he didn't seem to want to do that, so I think you're safe."

Myka raised an eyebrow. "Who was he?"

"Not the boss, don't worry," Helena grinned. "The boss is a very professional lady called Jolene."

"Did the boss compliment your shoes?"

"No. The boss just wanted to know my availability, my learning curve and how I would deal with problem clients. And before you ask, no I did not say I'd throw things at them."

Myka leaned over and kissed her. "Okay. Ready for polynomials?"

"Absolutely."

It was a short drive and they were sprawled out on Helena's bed with notebooks and textbook in under fifteen minutes.

"Okay. So. Remember the distributive property? This is the opposite of that. You're pulling numbers out instead of combining. So if you have 2x plus 4y plus 8, the only thing you're going to be able to pull out from every one of those is just 2. Because you only have one x and one y and one solo coefficient. So you pull the 2 out and it ends up looking like this." She wrote the factored problem in Helena's notebook.

2(x + 2y + 4)

"Multiply that out and see what you get."

Helena took the pencil and chewed the eraser for a second while she looked at the problem, then wrote.

2x + 4y + 8

"Yes, exactly. Does it make sense, pulling out the greatest common multiple?"

"Yes, because if you tried to pull out a 4 instead of a 2, you'd end up with a fraction."

"Exactly, and you don't want that. So the biggest number you can divide evenly out of all three of those numbers is 2."

"And I can't use 2x because then when I got to the 4y it would end up 4xy and that's not in the original problem."

"Correct. Okay I'll write out a few for you to try." She scribbled a few problems and handed Helena the notebook and pencil.

Helena chewed the eraser again until Myka batted it out of her mouth, then scowled and stared at the paper without chewing the eraser.

1. 5x + 10x + 30
5(x + 2x + 6)

2. 3y + 12xy + 6yz
3y(1 + 4x + 2z)

3. 7x + 10y + 13z

She stared at the last one, disgusted with it. "What the bloody hell do I do if nothing goes into all three?"

"Good question. The only thing you can factor out of that is a 1. So you can either write it out using a 1 as your factor or you can write unfactorable."

Pleased she hadn't missed something and gotten it wrong, Helena just wrote 'unfactorable' next to number three and handed the notebook to Myka.

Myka looked them over and grinned. "You got it baby. Good job!"

Helena was rather proud of herself.

"Okay, one more type of factoring and then we're done for today. Deal?"

"Yes," Helena nodded eagerly.

"This is harder, but I know you can do it. This time we're adding in squares, and when you factor, you separate the polynomial into two sets of parenthises." She wrote down an example because it was easier to explain visually.

4x2 - 16
(2x - 4)(2x + 4)

Helena looked at it and got nervous. "How the bloody hell did you get that from that?"

"What is the square root of 4?"

"Two."

"That's your first step. Put a 2 at the beginning of each set of parenthises." She had Helena write it out to learn it.

Helena scribbled two sets of parenthises and filled in the 2s.

(2 )(2 )

"Good. And the square root of x squared?"

"X." She filled it in.

(2x )(2x )

"Square root of 16?"

"Four." She filled it in.

(2x 4)(2x 4)

"Now the way you know whether you're going to use plus or minus just comes from practicing and getting comfortable with the process. For the moment I want you to use two pluses and see what you get when you multiply it out."

"All right."

(2x + 4)(2x + 4)

"First, inside, outside, last," she reminded herself, then multiplied.

4x2 + 8x +8x + 16 = 4x2 + 16x + 16

She frowned at it. "That's not right. We want minus 16 at the end, not plus 16. And that 16x in the middle came out of nowhere. That happened because we used two pluses, right? So there was no plus and minus to cancel each other out?"

"Yes!" Myka said excitedly. "I didn't even explain that yet and you figured it out!"

Helena squirmed with pride, trying to tamp down on it. "And if we had used two minuses we would end up with 4x squared minus 16x plus 16, so that doesn't work either. Using a plus and a minus gives you the minus 16 at the end and cancels out the two 8xs in the middle."

"Oh my God, you're getting it so perfectly," Myka said. "Not that I thought you couldn't, but it's still exciting for a tutor when their student does that. And speaking of perfect, problems like these are called perfect squares. We'll tackle non perfect squares on Wednesday."

"Okay let me just try one perfect square without your help, just to make sure I've got it?"

Myka nodded and wrote down a problem for her.

9x2 - 25

Helena studied it, keeping the eraser out of her mouth, then solved it.

(3x + 5)(3x - 5)
9x2 +15x -15x -25
9x2 +15x -15x -25
9x2 -25

"Yes!" She showed Myka and Myka tackled her to the bed, laying on top of her and kissing her.

"Yes indeed," Myka agreed.

Just as Myka's tongue pushed past her lips, her phone rang.

Myka sighed and rolled off of her so she could answer it.

"I think it's the tattoo place... do you think that's good news or bad?" Helena asked, eyes wide.

"I don't know. Answer it though!" Myka said, gesturing at it wildly.

"Hello?" Helena said after hitting 'accept'. "Yes, this is she. Yes. Absolutely. Wonderful. See you then, thank you!" She hung up.

"Didn't get it, huh?" Myka teased,

"I've got a job!" Helena shrieked, suddenly excited instead of dreading it. "I start next week. I'm actually looking forward to it!"

Myka hugged her and tackled her again, landing on the open textbook. "Ow." She shoved it out of the way and got comfortable. "Congratulations baby!"

"Thanks!" Helena said, but after a few seconds her jubilance faded and she looked at Myka seriously. "Before I start work I would like something we talked about before, if you're still willing to do it."

"Are you talking about what I think you are? You still want that after hearing about mine?"

Helena bit her lip and nodded.

"Baby are you afraid of people bothering you at work? Because honestly having my initial branded into your skin isn't going to stop that from happening, as much as I would wish it could."

"Well it's maybe a little of that but mostly it's just... I like the thought of people seeing it even if they don't know what it means, because I'll know what it means and I'll feel close to you even when you're not there. And I'm sure Freud would have a field day with me but I love the idea of being marked as yours; belonging to you."

Myka shivered. "Okay," she agreed. "If you figure out a way to turn my K into an H."

"That's easy, I've already done," Helena told her. "I just need something shaped like a really open C. The way the K is, if I add a little curvature it'll transform beautifully."

Myka smiled and snuggled up to her.

--

They were laying in bed in their pajamas and Helena was about to turn the light out when Myka facepalmed next to her.

"Oh my God," Myka said, groaning as she scrolled through her Twitter notifications.

Helena grabbed her phone when it beeped and looked down at the alert. "What the bloody hell is a covfefe? Why did you send me this?"

"Our idiot president just tweeted that."

"Do not say 'our'. I am British. I do not claim that oaf."

"You live here, he's yours too. And he just Tweeted the word 'covfefe'. And didn't delete it. Oh. My. God. Look at the replies. OhmyGOD. They're hilarious." She suddenly started laughing. And it escalated from there until she was literally rolling around on the bed in hysterics. "Looklooklook someone made a Wheel of Fortune puzzle out of Negative Press Covfefe. OhmyGod I can't breathe..."

Helena was close behind. "Say what you want about NATO or HILLARY or OBAMA but NOBODY TALKS SHIT ABOUT COVFEFE!!!"

They were so loud laughing and screaming over the funniest replies that Jacqueline came rushing into the room to see if they were all right. "Girls? What's wr--" She stopped when she saw them laughing. "Covfefe?"

"YES!" Myka shrieked, getting up and running into the bathroom before she peed her pants.

"The replies, Mum!" Helena wheezed. "Did you see the one about Sean Spicer will say it's a great word tomorrow, and the one about how to pronounce it?"

"Yes," Jacqueline groaned. "Good night, girls."

Myka came out of the bathroom and flopped on her stomach on the bed to read more replies. "It was very clear what he meant by covfefe."

"LEGALIZE COVFEFE!" Helena yelled after her mother.

"It's cool to see you get activated by your Russian implants in the middle of a tweet."

"I can't take it," Helena cried, shutting down her phone and putting it on the nightstand. "I can scarcely breathe."

Myka shut hers down as well or she would end up reading all 25,000 replies. She banished the entire situation from her mind, with some difficulty, and turned toward Helena. "Come here."

Helena rolled over and scooted closer. "Yes?"

"I'm proud of you. For the job thing."

For some reason having Myka say it like that, just say she was proud, made Helena shy. She ducked her head and hid it against Myka's neck. "Thank you," she mumbled.

"Are you being shy with me?" Myka asked, amused.

"A little..."

"Why, baby?"

"I don't know. The proud thing I guess. I like it, of course, but it makes me self-conscious. Not in a bad way."

"You could be in trouble instead if you want," Myka teased.

"Thanks but I think I'll manage with the pride," Helena said, forcibly closing her eyes to keep from rolling them.

"I saw what you did just then. Good strategy."

"Only three more days of punishment in science."

"And except for the brief whine to Jacey and Rebecca, you haven't complained about it at all. That makes me happy."

"Speaking of them, I like the nickname they have for you."

"Mykes? Jacey coined that the first time I met them."

"Yes, Mykes. I like it."

Myka knew what Helena wasn't saying. "You can call me that if you want, sometimes."

Helena beamed. "How do you always know what I'm thinking?"

Myka grinned and kissed her, long and sweet, soft and hard at the same time. "You're not the most subtle person ever."

"That's true!" Helena laughed at herself.

"And I like to think I kind of know you pretty well, too," Myka added.

Helena kissed her softly. "You do, love."

Myka put her arms around Helena and rubbed her back. "So this weekend, game night..." she began.

"Yes?"

"What do you want me to do if Jacey and Rebecca want it to be more like a play date?"

"Do they?"

"I don't know. I'm just planning ahead so I don't get put on the spot."

"So you're asking me if I'd play with you in front of them?"

"Mm." Myka nodded.

"Of course. If you're comfortable with it."

Myka nodded again. "And you still want me to refuse if Jacey's interested in playing with you, right?"

Helena thought about it and pressed herself closer to Myka. "How do you feel about it?"

The million dollar question. Myka didn't really want to be the one to answer first. "I need to hear your thoughts first."

"Well... I like her and based on everything you've told me about both of them, I trust her. I suppose if you wanted her to, I wouldn't say no. I do like to please you, after all..."

Myka grinned at that and squeezed her. "Yes, you do."

"Your turn. How do you feel about it?"

"If it was anyone else I'd absolutely refuse and possibly behead them for even asking. But with Jacey it could be a little hot to see her play with you. And I know she would never touch you sexually."

"A little hot!" Helena squealed, scandalized. "Myka Bering, you think me getting dominated by Jacey is hot?" She grinned, forcing Myka onto her back and cliimbing over her with a girlish giggle.

Myka blushed fiercely but to her credit she held Helena's amused gaze. "Maybe?"

"And what about you? Are you going to domme Rebecca?"

Myka's blush remained fixed. "I doubt that. It's weird. She's so much older. I'm sure she wouldn't even want me to."

"You're the best dominant on Earth, Myka," Helena said seriously. "Anyone would want you to. Age means nothing."

"Thank you," Myka said, finally looking away, thoroughly embarrassed. "How would you feel about it?"

"Same as you feel about me and Jacey, I think. It would be a little hot. As long as you don't fuck her."

"Helena! I'm not going to fuck anyone else, ever."

"How did I get so lucky?"

"How did I?"

"No, how did I?"

Myka laughed. "We're both lucky. Deal with it."

--

Helena was nervous on Friday night even though it was really just supposed to be a game night. They had no plans to do anything other than like cards, Monopoly, that sort of thing. But that didn't mean nothing would happen - they'd be four kinky bitches in the same house. "Are you sure I can't wear a dress?" she asked Myka, frowning at herself in the mirror.

"Yes. You look too delicious in those jeans and that top makes me want to rip it off. You're wearing what you're wearing."

Helena closed her eyes.

Myka grinned at her and stepped up behind her, arms sliding around her waist to pull her close. "Good girl."

Helena shivered. Myka's lips were so close to her ear she could feel her girlfriend's breath. "I really hope I don't embarrass you..."

"Just be yourself. I love you."

Helena beamed, leaning back into Myka's embrace. "I love you too. More than I ever thought I could love someone."

"See? I'm incredibly lucky. Are you ready to go?" She would have pulled Helena's hair, tempted as she always was to do so, but she didn't want to disturb the gorgeous mess her girlfriend had wrangled it into atop her head.

"I'm ready," Helena said dreamily.

--

Myka knocked on the door after double checking her phone one last time to make sure they had the right address, and a few seconds later Rebecca opened the door with a huge grin.

"Babies!" she said, ushering them inside and shutting the door behind them, then pulling them each into one arm for a three-way hug. "Jacey's out grabbing sodas, we just realized we had nothing to drink, so she'll be right back. Make yourselves at home."

Helena and Myka returned the hug and chuckled to themselves at being called babies. They wandered into the living room and glanced around before they sat next to each other on one of the sofas.

"Your home is very lovely," Helena complimented.

"Thank you," Rebecca said just as the door burst open and Jacey came in juggling two full brown grocery bags and two twelve-packs of soda. She hurried to take the soda from her girlfriend and carried it to the kitchen, making room in the fridge to slide them both in. "Mykes, Pepsi or Dr. Pepper?" she asked, getting out four glasses and filling them all halfway with ice.

"Dr. Pepper, thanks," Myka called back.

"Helena?" Rebecca asked.

"Same, thank you," Helena replied.

Jacey grinned at the girls and said hello before putting away the snacks she'd bought and kissing Rebecca's cheek, then carried two of the drinks out to the living room. "Which ones did I grab?" she asked when Rebecca joined her.

Rebecca snickered. "So impulsive. Good thing I was keeping track. You have their Dr. Peppers." She sat on the sofa across from the girls and leaned forward to spread out four coasters from the stack at one end of the coffee table.

Jacey set the girls' drinks on their coasters and hugged them each in turn. "Hey ladies, how've you been?" she asked as she sat next to Rebecca.

"Good. Helena got a job," Myka told them. "At a tattoo shop."

"Right on," Jacey said, holding her glass up toward Helena before taking a drink. "How about you, Mykes?"

"Nothing new with me. I'm good.

"When do you start your job?" Rebecca asked Helena.

"Monday after school, well after my maths tutoring which is after school. I've already caught up a grade since Myka's been tutoring me three days a week."

"I'm sure she's an excellent teacher and you seem to be a very dedicated pupil. Congratulations on catching up an entire grade, that's great."

Helena blushed under the praise. "Thank you," she mumbled.

--

They were only halfway through their first game of poker when Helena forgot her manners and had a small fit at losing three hands in a row. Not quite thinking about where she was petulantly throwing her cards, one of them hit Jacey in the hand, making the older woman jump in surprise and stare down at her hand in shock.

"Bloody hell," Helena whispered, aghast at herself for being so impulsive and embarrassed that she'd nicked Jacey with one of her cards. "I'm terribly sorry," she rushed to apologize.

Jacey just folded her arms over her chest and looked at Myka with a raised eyebrow.

Myka matched her pose and stared back at her. "Yes?"

"Are you going to do something about that? Your girl just threw something at me."

"I'm sure you're more than capable of handling it yourself," Myka responded with a tiny cackle.

Helena blushed to the roots of her hair. Jacey might not even want to deal with her. Why couldn't she think before she reacted sometimes?

"Is that so?" Jacey asked, trying to figure out if that was a joke or consent.

Myka nudged Helena, who got up and shuffled over to stand in front of Jacey.

"I'm sorry," she said again, staring down at her shoes.

Jacey glanced at Myka one last time, who nodded, and she tried to suppress a little thrill as she guided Helena across her lap.

Rebecca sat up straighter next to Jacey and scooted away a little to give her some more room.

Helena was absolutely mortified, but more at herself than at the situation. She reached beneath herself and undid her pants, hoping Jacey would take it as further apology.

Jacey let out a slow breath and tugged down Helena's jeans, leaving her backside covered by only a thin layer of lace. "How many do you think, Myka?"

"For throwing cards when she lost a hand of poker, which I've never seen anyone do in my life? Give her two hundred."

Rebecca choked on her drink. Helena gasped. Even Jacey's jaw dropped for a second before she realized and closed it.

Myka smirked. "Can you take two hundred, HG?"

Helena was not about to embarrass Myka further, and besides, she did know she could take it. "Yes Ma'am," she said quietly.

Jacey almost had to fan herself at that. "Okay then. Get ready, little one."

"Yes'm," Helena said, not sure what to call Jacey.

Jacey gave Myka one last look that said 'God damn, girl' and brought her hand down on Helena's lace-covered bottom.

Helena gasped, simply because it felt so different than when Myka spanked her, which was what she was used to now. She couldn't really say why exactly it felt different, just that it did.

After fifty Jacey checked in. "How you doing, little one? Are you okay?"

"Yes'm," Helena answered politely. "Thank you."

Myka beamed at Helena's impeccable manners.

Jacey gave Myka an approving grin, then continued the punishment.

By a hundred Helena's behind was quite sore and she imagined it was probably also quite pink. She did her best to hold still and stay quiet. But by one fifty she couldn't help it, Jacey landed a particularly hard swat and she squirmed with a whimper. "M'sorry," she immediately said.

"No need to apologize for reacting," Jacey assured her. "You take a pretty hard spanking exceptionally well."

"Thank you," Helena said quietly.

"Forty-six more to go. Can you handle that, little one?"

"Yes'm."

Jacey continued smacking her bottom, upping the ante with more strength for the last twenty-five.

By the time it was done, Helena's eyes were filled with tears, a few having broken free to slide down her cheeks. She had whimpered a few more times but managed to mostly hold still. She wanted to make Myka proud. Possibly holding in her reactions was what caused her to cry, because she wasn't upset. It was a very good, very hard spanking that had her entire backside blazing with heat and stinging like the devil.

"All right, you're done," Jacey told her, carefully pulling her jeans back into place.

Helena's eyes went wide as the rough material of her jeans slid over her inflamed behind. She glanced at Myka and when her girlfriend nodded she said to Jacey, "thank you for the correction."

"Oh, that's delightful!" Jacey said. "You're quite welcome. You may get up now, little one."

Helena nodded and went to Myka, kneeling on the floor in front of her girlfriend, laying her head in Myka's lap and putting her arms around Myka's waist. "I'm sorry," she whispered against her thighs.

"You were amazing, baby," Myka whispered back. "Such a good girl. I'm so proud of you."

Helena picked her head up, staring at Myka. "Really?"

"Really," Myka promised. "Ready for the next hand?"

"Might I sit this one out?" Helena asked, biting her lip.

"Sure, baby," Myka said, leaning down to kiss the top of her head.

"Are you okay, Helena?" Rebecca asked when she realized Helena was opting out of the next hand.

Helena looked over at her, not to be rude. "I'm quite good, thank you," she said with a blush.

"Okay. I've obviously felt Jacey's hand plenty of times so I know what it's like. And two hundred... well... I don't know how well I'd do with that many. I'd probably have kicked and cried like a baby," she admitted.

"I do very much enjoy having pain inflicted upon me," Helena assured her. "I appreciate being allowed the privilege of a spanking."

"You don't have to be that polite, HG," Myka whispered with a smirk.

"I am overcompensating for my dripping cunt," Helena raised up and hissed in her ear.

It was Myka's turn to choke, though she wasn't drinking at the moment. "Helena!" she scolded, dragging her girlfriend across her lap. "Get your pants undone. Being secretive is rude," she then said quietly.

Helena gasped, not having expected to be punished for what she said. "I didn't mean to be rude!" she hurried to say as she undid her pants. "I just didn't want to say that loudly..."

"Then you shouldn't have said it at all," Myka told her with a smirk, shaking her head. She yanked Helena's pants and panties down to her knees, revealing her bright red bottom. "Jacey, could I borrow a hairbrush, please?"

Rebecca winced.

Jacey got up and left the room, returning a few seconds later with a wood-backed brush. "Damn, Mykes, you're strict."

Myka took the brush and kissed the back of Helena's head. "She likes it that way. Don't you, HG?"

"Yes Ma'am," Helena groaned, relieved that Myka didn't seem geniunely upset with her.

"Keep your hands where I can see them."

Helena groaned again. She put her hands on the sofa cushion. "Yes Ma'am," she said, clearly pouting.

Jacey snickered to herself. Helena was a fiery little thing. She could see how much the girls loved each other and it made her so happy.

"Behave," Myka said, then started bringing the hairbrush down on Helena's naked backside.

Helena yelped, and squirmed, and kicked, and moaned, and cried when it started to sting so badly she could barely stand it. She needed Myka to either stop or to let her touch herself, and she knew the latter wasn't about to happen so she prayed for the former, doing her best to keep her hips from grinding down into Myka's thighs. Apparently she wasn't very successful because Myka wrapped an arm around her waist to keep her still and spanked her harder until all she could do was cry. Her body was so aroused that even that hurt. "I'll behave!" she found herself promising even as she squeezed her thighs together and pressed her hips down as far as she could while in Myka's vise grip.

Myka gave her a dozen more swats, then picked her up and carried her to the corner, standing her in it. "Hands on your head, love. Stand here until you're not dying to be fucked and then you can ask me to come back to the game. Do you understand my expectations?" Myka asked gently.

"Yes Ma'am," Helena cried, tears streaming down her face, her stomach twisted with unbearable arousal. She felt like if she even touched her thighs together she might come, so she spread her legs the slightest bit to avoid it. She didn't want to disobey Myka.

"Good girl," Myka said, kissing her cheek. "I love you." With that she returned to her seat on the sofa, starting to shuffle the cards until she noticed both Jacey and Rebecca just staring at her. "I-- what?" she asked self-consciously.

"You're magnificent," Rebecca breathed, one hand squeezing Jacey's forearm so hard Myka could see Jacey's skin turning whilte around her fingers.

"Have to agree," Jacey said, gently patting Rebecca's hand to let her know she was choking her arm.

Rebecca released her hold with a gasp, then rubbed the half-moon-shaped indents her fingernails had left behind. "Sorry, J."

"It's fine," Jacey chuckled.

"Helena is magnificent as well," Rebecca then said. "She's just a perfect little girl."

Helena blushed over in the corner.

"I agree with you on that," Myka said, grinning. "Now are we playing cards or what?"

Helena stood in the corner with her hands on her head, trying to calm the raging sexual energy coursing through her, but it was hard when she was standing there with her bare bottom on display, red and probably bruised, because even just doing that was a turn on. She focused on the sounds of the poker game, the cards being flipped, shuffled, dealt... She didn't even know how long she had stood there before she felt like she could be appropriate. "Myka?" she asked hesitantly, keeping her face to the wall.

"Yes, love?" Myka asked, pausing the game to get up and walk over to her girl.

"May I rejoin the game now, please?" Helena asked, biting her lip.

"You may," Myka said, pulling up Helena's panties and jeans for her, then reaching around in front of her to zip and button them. "I've been missing you. You've been standing here for half an hour."

"I didn't know how long it was... I've been missing you too," Helena said, turning around finally and curling against Myka.

Myka wrapped her in a tight hug and dropped little kisses all over the top of her head. "Are you okay?"

"Yes, thank you," Helena said with a nod. Her bottom still stung and throbbed something awful, but it felt amazing. She sat very gingerly when they reached the sofa, a tiny hiss escaping her even so.

"I vote we play spank poker," Jacey suddenly spoke up.

"Beg your pardon?" Helena asked, wondering if she was hearing things.

"Did you just say 'spank poker'?" Myka asked, staring.

"Do I even want to know what that is?" Rebecca joined in.

"I just made it up, naturally," Jacey explained. "Whoever wins the hand gets to spank someone."

Helena turned bright red. "I couldn't..."

"Perv!" Myka said, jaw dropped, continuing to stare at Jacey.

"How is that pervy after you just told me to give your girlfriend two hundred swats and then you spanked her with a hairbrush after that?"

"Um... it just is?" Myka said, laughing. "Okay. I'm in. It's ridiculous, but I'm in."

Helena hid behind Myka. "I don't want to spank anyone," she whispered.

"I know, love," Myka whispered back. Then she said so everyone could hear, "you can be on my team. That way you can still play, but you won't have to spank anyone. And you can take mine for me."

"Oh no," Jacey said, snorting with amusement. "Nice try, Bering. Nobody takes any for anyone else. She can be on your team but she can't take your place."

Myka reeled with laughter. "You just want to spank me, J."

"Maybe," Jacey said dismissively.

"Is that okay?" Myka asked Helena. "Are you comfortable with being on my team?"

"Very, thank you," Helena nodded, snuggling up to her. She didn't know how comfortable she was with the idea of seeing Myka get a spanking, though. The thought gave her butterflies in her stomach. But she knew Myka trusted both of these women implicitly so she wasn't completely freaking out.

"What are the rules of these spankings?" Myka asked.

"Good question," Jacey said, pointing at her. "It's supposed to be fun, so nothing too extreme. How about twenty-five whacks? Hand only."

Myka and Rebecca nodded. "Fair enough," Myka agreed. "Pants? Underwear?"

"Pants down, underwear on."

"I agree to your terms, General."

Jacey laughed at her. "You're too fuckin much, Mykes. General. Ha."

"I'm too fuckin much? You just invented a seventh-grade game," Myka laughed back at Jacey.

"Hahahaaaa," Jacey agreed. "Touche."

Myka won the first round and Helena breathed a sigh of relief.

"Come on, Becs," Myka said, patting her lap.

Surprised but pleased, Jacey watched her girlfriend get up and walk around the coffee table.

Helena wedged herself between Myka and the back of the sofa so she wouldn't have to move away from her.

Myka blinked but knew Helena was feeling somewhat out of her element so she let her sit like that without comment.

Rebecca undid her pants and laid across Myka's lap. "This is infinitely strange," she decided.

"It really is," Myka agreed. "Blame your girlfriend." She smirked and tugged Rebecca's pants down, then laid a hand on her back and gave her twenty-five crisp swats over her light blue panties. They were hard, but not punishing.

A little flushed, but only in the mildest of discomfort physically, Rebecca returned to her seat, fixing her pants as she went.

Rebecca won the next hand and as she looked back and forth between Myka and Jacey, her cheeks turned pink. "I thought I would be good with it but I can't spank either one of you. You're both just... yeah, I'm out."

"Aww, baby," Jacey said, giving her a kiss on the cheek. "What about HG?"

Rebecca blushed darker. "Maybe, but she's already been spanked pretty harshly..."

Myka turned her head so Helena could whisper into her ear.

"It's okay," Helena said. "She can."

"Tell her, then," Myka encouraged her adorably shy little girl.

Helena cleared her throat and came out from behind Myka. "Um, it's okay. You can," she told Rebecca, staring at a spot on the sofa beside the older woman.

"Are you sure?" Rebecca asked, trying to get eye contact. "You got a good thrashing."

Helena finally looked at her and nodded, lower lip worried between her teeth. "I'm sure. If you want to."

Rebecca nodded as well so Helena undid her pants and walked over, laying across her lap. She closed her eyes as her pants were lowered for the third time that night.

Rebecca took a slow breath and started spanking, feeling awkward since Helena was bruised and the girl yelped softly with each smack. She didn't hit hard, and after twenty-five she helped Helena get her pants back up. "Are you okay?" she asked, worried.

"Yes'm," Helena told her eagerly. "That was aces." She skipped back over to Myka, glowing, and wedged in behind her again.

Myka laughed at her girlfriend and turned her head to give her a quick kiss. She won, and beckoned Jacey over.

Jacey groaned, throwing her head back, honey brown braids flying over her shoulders as she got up and walked to Myka. She undid her pants and crawled over Myka's lap.

Myka wasn't a hundred percent sure what nationality Jacey was, but she thought Albanian. Whatever it was she pulled off corn rows perfectly. She pulled down J's pants and rested her hand on her backside.

"Keep in mind you're getting it as soon as I win," Jacey told her. "So think carefully about the way you spank me."

"Such a domme," Myka teased, giving her a good smack.

"I guess that's tru- ow!" Jacey complained. "Mykes, come on..."

Myka cackled and spanked her again.

"Ow! Myka!"

"How long has it been since you've been spanked?" Myka paused to ask.

"I don't know, like ten years? Eleven?"

"Because I'm not hitting you that hard. You're just not used to it."

Jacey grumbled and pressed her face into the sofa cushion. "Fine."

By fifteen whacks Jacey was trying to avoid Myka's hand so Myka held her in place while she finished the last ten.

Rebecca couldn't help laughing at the way Jacey squirmed and whined about twenty-five smacks.

Jacey narrowed her eyes but took the ribbing in stride, fixing her pants and pointing at her girlfriend. "You're gonna fuckin get it right after Mykes," she said as she retook her seat.

Myka won again and put Jacey back over, spanking her harder this time, pulling a whimper from the badass woman toward the end.

Rebecca didn't laugh again because she feared for her own ass, but she smirked to herself at Jacey's reaction to being spanked. It was actually rather endearing.

Jacey finally won and glared playfully at Myka. "Get your pants down, girl."

Helena clung tightly to Myka, worried about seeing her get spanked after everything she had been through with Katya. "Will you be okay?" she whispered, fists full of Myka's shirt.

Myka turned around to face her and gently kissed her. "I'll be fine, I promise, love. Thank you for worrying about me but I'll be fine."

Helena returned the kiss and slowly uncurled her fingers from Myka's shirt, reluctantly letting her go.

Myka undid her pants and shimmied them down her legs, then bent over Jacey's lap.

Jacey flexed her fingers, rested her left hand on Myka's back, then brought her right down with a stinging slap.

Myka jumped in surprise but then gave Helena a wink and said to Jacey, "One, thank you Miss J."

"OhmyGod stop that," Jacey said, eyes wide, smacking her again.

Myka snickered and sighed. "Fine..."

Helena watched as Jacey spanked Myka; watched Myka's bottom turn pink through the lace of her underwear; watched her girlfriend inhale sharply and exhale slowly; watched Myka's eyes close at the harder swats. She watched for any sign of distress, but Myka seemed fine.

After the twenty-fifth smack, Myka stood and fixed her pants, then made her way to Helena and wrapped her girl in her arms. "How about you, baby, are you okay?" she asked, knowing it was hard for Helena to watch that happen.

"If you're okay, I'm okay," Helena said, looking up at her. "Are you okay?"

"I'm good. It stings a little but that's never been a problem for me. It doesn't hurt too much. Thank you for being so protective."

"I love you, Myka," Helena said softly.

"I love you too, HG."

"I mean, like, really and truly love you, as in I would do anything in the world for you. I'd die for you," Helena whispered.

"I would never let you do that," Myka said, pulling her closer and kissing her, long and slow and deep.

Helena melted against her with a sigh. When Myka pulled back she laid her forehead on her girlfriend's shoulder.

"I love you more than I've ever loved anyone," Myka finally said, stroking Helena's hair. "I'd die for you too, I hope you know that."

"Well if you wouldn't let me do that I wouldn't let you either," Helena insisted.

Myka grinned and nodded. "I guess that's fair."

Rebecca won the next hand and Helena was delighted. When she was beckoned over she undid her pants and laid across Rebecca's lap.

"Spank her really hard, okay Becs?" Myka asked, knowing Helena would appreciate it.

Helena made a little groaning sound despite trying not to.

Rebecca grinned and shook her head at their antics, but she started spanking Helena sharply nonetheless.

Helena gasped and squirmed and bit herself in the arm to keep from pressing her hips down at the hardest spanks. When it was done she was flushed and breathing hard, her groin throbbing as she shakily made her way back to Myka after Rebecca pulled up her pants.

The look in Helena's eyes was incendiary. Myka stood and took her by the elbow, excusing the two of them and leading her girlfriend to the bathroom. Once inside and with the door locked behind them she slid her hand into Helena's underwear and rubbed the heel of it over Helena's clit.

Helena couldn't hold in a strangled moan and Myka clamped a hand over her mouth, moving around behind her and pulling her tight so their bodies pressed together, Helena's back to Myka's front.

Myka kept her hand over Helena's mouth as she rubbed her clit, every so often slipping her fingers lower to gather some wetness and spread it over the stimulated bundle of nerves.

Helena bucked her hips into Myka's hand, panting against the gag order. It felt amazing, especially after she'd been so worked up a while ago and Myka had forced her to calm down without any release. Now, though, she could feel release approaching rapidly and she squeezed her thighs together to further hasten its arrival. A few more seconds of Myka's furious rubbing and she came with a muffled cry, sagging against Myka's comforting hold.

Myka murmured encouragement into her ear and when Helena came, she held her tight, letting her ride it out and come down softly. Slowly. Wrapped in a loving embrace. The act was hot and fast but Myka would let her bask in the afterglow for as long as she wanted.

When the last tremors had rocked through her body, Helena slowly turned in Myka's arms. As Myka's hand fell away from her mouth she leaned up and kissed her girlfriend. "Thank you," she breathed. "Thank you so much."

"I knew you needed it, baby," Myka murmured, enjoying the kiss.

"What about you?"

"Getting spanked doesn't affect me like it does you. Seeing you get spanked is pretty fucking hot, but I can manage. Thank you for asking, though. I adore you."

Helena blushed and hid her face. "Same to you," she said into Myka's chest. "About the adoring, not about the seeing you get spanked thing," she added quickly.

Myka laughed and patted her back, then moved to the sink to wash her hands. "Fix your clothes, love."

Helena buttoned and zipped while Myka washed her hands, then they returned to the living room.

Rebecca was on her knees on the floor with her head in Jacey's lap while Jacey stroked her lavender curls. Jacey looked over when they came in. "Fuckin pervs," she teased.

Helena squeaked but Myka just flipped Jacey her middle finger and slumped down on the sofa, pulling Helena onto her lap. "All right, enough spank poker," she said with a snort. "I can't even believe we played it."

"Do you girls need to get going or are you up for a movie?" Rebecca asked, eyes closed as she enjoyed Jacey's gentle attention.

"Whatever you want," Helena whispered into Myka's ear.

"Stop whispering," Myka whispered back.

"Fine. Whatever you want," Helena said at a normal volume, frowning.

"There's actually something I need to ask you guys," Myka said, turning her attention to their hostesses.

"Yes?" Jacey asked.

"Helena wants an M branded on her, and I want mine changed from a K to an H, and Helena has an idea of how to make it happen, but I'm not comfortable doing that to her unless there's someone more experienced around in case something goes wrong or just to show me how to do it properly and make sure I know how to look after it and everything. So I was wondering if you guys would maybe just be there when we do it."

Rebecca's eyes filled with tears just at the mention of Myka's brand, but she was happy that Myka wanted to turn it into something of her own choosing.

Jacey tightened her hand in Rebecca's hair, knowing how they both felt about that night, and nodded to Myka. "We would be honored."

Myka smiled and breathed a sigh of relief. "Awesome, thank you. Do you have any time before Monday?"

"We're busy tomorrow but free on Sunday, would that work for you?"

Myka looked down at Helena. "Is Sunday okay, baby?"

Helena nodded dreamily, a low-key shiver running through her at the thought of actually getting to go through with being marked as Myka's. "Yes Ma'am," she breathed.

Myka kissed the top of her head and held her close. "What time Sunday?"

"The earlier the better so it has time to heal before you guys go to school on Monday," Rebecca suggested.

"How about tomorrow night?" Jacey said. "We're done with our previous engagement around eight or so. Why don't you ladies come by around ten, we'll do it then, and you can stay the night in the guest room so we're here if anything comes up? Then you'll have all day Sunday to heal as well."

They all agreed that sounded great. The only thing left to do was to find or make something metal in the shape of an M to use for Helena and an open C to use for Myka.

--

Myka ended up drawing out what she wanted the M to look like and she had Helena measure her existing brand and draw to scale exactly what she needed the C to look like, then she took both drawings to a welder and paid to have them made into metal. She was nervous as hell when it was time to do it. Helena wanted it on the underside of her wrist and Myka was sweating, holding the rod with its glowing red "M" in her own scrawled handwriting brought to life. "Do you want it facing you or facing out?" she asked, her voice shaking.

"Facing me," Helena answered quietly, then bit down on the padded piece of leather Myka had cleaned for her to muffle her screams if she wanted. She'd never done this and didn't know how loud she would scream, so she accepted the offer and put the leather in her mouth, clamping her teeth down hard.

"Are you ready?" Myka asked, turning the brand so it faced the way Helena wanted it.

Helena nodded, trying to convey with her eyes that she trusted Myka and she was more than ready.

Myka shot a silent prayer skyward that she wouldn't fuck it up, then firmly pressed the metal to Helena's wrist. She held it for a few seconds and removed it just as Helena's brain caught up with her skin and she started screaming. Myka quickly made sure it took, then dropped the rod into the bucket of water next to her, the sizzling sound barely reaching her ears over Helena's screams.

Helena had felt nothing for a split second and then the worst pain she'd ever felt bloomed over the tender skin of her wrist and she screamed, the leather falling out of her mouth and to the floor. Before she knew it she was wrapped in Myka's arms and she screamed into her girlfriend's shoulder until the pain settled enough to just be excruciating and not literally unbearable.

Myka couldn't help the tears streaming down her face as she held Helena tight, the screams twisting her stomach and making her chest ache. "I love you," she murmured, hoping Helena would still love her too. "I'm sorry..."

After a few short moments of screaming and then long moments of crying, Helena kissed the side of Myka's neck as she calmed down. "I love you too," she said quietly with a sniffle. "Don't be sorry... the pain will go away and I'll simply have the most beautiful mark in the world."

Myka stroked her hair and squeezed her. "Are you sure? You're sure you still want to be with me after that?"

"Myka Ophelia," Helena breathed. "Of course I do. I wanted this. And you'd damn well better still want to be with me after I do my part."

"I will," Myka promised, her tears finally slowing to a stop. "Do you want to see it?"

"Yes Ma'am," Helena answered.

Myka slowly pulled out of the embrace so Helena could look at her wrist.

When her eyes fell on the brand for the first time Helena gasped. "Bloody hell, it's magnificent," she murmured.

"Really?" Myka asked. "You're happy with it?"

"It's worth every ounce of agony," Helena said, transfixed by the beauty of Myka's cursive handwriting burned forever into her wrist. "It's so beautiful. It's perfect. Thank you, Myka," she said, hugging her carefully.

"Thank you, Helena," Myka said softly. "Are you ready to do mine?"

"Yes," Helena replied, moving to the fireplace and picking up the rod she had designed. She held it in the fire until it glowed red, as she'd been instructed, and then when Myka's shirt and bra were off she knelt behind her girlfriend. "Are you ready?"

"Yes," Myka said, squeezing her eyes shut.

Helena took a deep breath and lined up the metal piece with exact precision, then firmly pressed it to Myka's back, held it for a few seconds and took it away.

Myka shoved her arm in her mouth to keep from screaming. Sweat dripped down her forehead and her jaw ached from being clamped down so tight. She cried quietly but managed not to scream.

Helena, just as Myka had, made sure it looked right before dunking the rod into the water bucket beside them. She cringed at the sizzle and smoke, but appreciated that Myka now had an elegant, decorated H on her back instead of something she'd never asked for. "Are you okay?" she asked.

Myka nodded, teeth still locked around her arm, and finally she relaxed her jaw, turning to kiss Helena. "I'm okay. Are you okay?"

"It fucking hurts," Helena laughed. "But yes, I'm okay." She got out her cell phone with her good hand and opened the camera, snapping a pic of Myka's H to show her.

Myka looked at the picture and grinned, exhaling a sigh of relief. "I love it," she said. "You're not even going to be able to tell it was ever a K. Thank you, baby."

"You're welcome, love," Helena said, nuzzling Myka's cheek and dropping a kiss there. "Are you tired? I'm exhausted and very ready to fall into bed."

"God, yes," Myka agreed with a groan.

They stopped to thank Jacey and Rebecca on their way to the guest room, then got ready quickly and climbed into bed, Myka on her stomach and Helena with her wrist facing up, positioned slightly off the edge of the mattress.

--

After breakfast the next morning Jacey and Rebecca examined the brands and they were both satisfied with the way they had been done.

"They look great, girls," Jacey said. "You both did them exactly right. They should heal fine if you're careful with them."

"Thank you both so much for being here for us," Helena said, snuggling up to Myka.

"Any time," Rebecca said with a smile. "After all, we've played spank poker together. Our bond is now unbreakable."

Jacey and Myka snorted with laughter and Helena giggled.

"Spank poker," Myka then said, running a hand over her face. "What the fuck, J?"

"I don't know," Jacey shook her head. "You all agreed to it."

"Except HG, she's the smart one," Myka said, pulling her girl close and kissing the top of her head.

Helena blushed. "Perhaps I'll play properly next time," she said quietly. "Though I won't spank Myka, ever."

"You're so sweet," Myka murmured into her ear. "And, like I said, smart," she then teased.

Helena laughed and nodded. "I thought as much. But being in trouble afterward is not why I won't do it."

"I know, love."

Chapter Text

Chapter Nine

Helena's first day of work went really well, and she told Myka all about it as they snuggled on her bed after dinner and homework.

"I even got a few compliments on my brand, though it's hard to see what it is with all the healing. I think they were more like compliments on the fact that I was ballsy enough to have one."

Myka laughed.

"Oh and one lady asked what it was, and when I told her it was my girlfriend's initial she raised her eyebrow and asked why I would let my girlfriend do that to me, and I said 'because she is also my dominant'. Then one of the tattoo artists told me I didn't have to divulge details about my personal life no matter how hot it was, and I decided I should probably keep to myself a little more. I mean it's a tattoo shop, not a dungeon. I'm just naturally outgoing and the thought of not telling didn't cross my mind."

"You are so precious," Myka said, laughing harder and tugging Helena closer. When her phone buzzed she grabbed it from the nightstand and her laughter stopped abruptly, the phone falling from her fingers after she saw a text message notification on her lock screen. Her breathing picked up and she didn't even attempt to retrieve the phone. Her heart pounded in her chest which sent her pulse racing and throbbing in her ears, and she knew she was about to have a panic attack.

"Myka?" Helena's eyes went wide and she snatched up the phone, tapping in Myka's password to open it, and froze at the glaring black text on white background that indicated Myka had a message. There was no name so it wasn't anyone in Myka's contacts and Helena got a sinking feeling that it was possibly from Katya. Myka wouldn't have reacted that way otherwise.

She quickly opened up the message and read it.

Just got out of jail. Thanks for that, by the way. I want to see you. We need to talk. Meet me at my place in 10 minutes.

Helena had to force herself to put down the phone instead of smashing it to pieces. She reached out to Myka, who was breathing extremely hard now, just like she had in the car that morning she had a panic attack. "Myka, I'm here," she said, moving onto her knees beside her girlfriend. "It's HG, baby, I'm here... you're safe, I promise. We're in my bedroom."

When Helena's voice and soothing words filtered through the haze surrounding her thoughts, Myka slowed her breathing and the room came back into view. Moment of panic over, she burst into tears. "I'm sorry!" she cried, sitting up and throwing her arms around Helena.

"Sorry? For what on Earth?" Helena asked, immediately starting to stroke Myka's hair. "You've nothing to be sorry about, love."

"I'm sorry she texted. I'm sorry for panicking just from seeing her number. I'm sorry you have to deal with my stupid, ridiculous, fucked up baggage. I'm sorry for--"

"Stop," Helena insisted. "I love you. You don't need to apologize for any of that. I'm here and I've got you and we'll figure out what to do together. Should I get my mum?"

"She's out with Linus, remember? They're coming here after so you can apologize to him and stuff? Besides, she doesn't know about my past."

"Should I call Jacey?"

Myka shook her head. "You're all I need. And I have to be able to deal with this myself or she won't respect it."

"Okay," Helena agreed with a nod. "Just let me know what you need from me. I'll do literally anything for you, Myka."

"I know," Myka said, taking a deep breath and kissing Helena's shoulder as she picked her head up. "I love you more than anything."

"Same to you," Helena said as Myka extracted herself from the hug and picked up her phone.

As she wrapped her hand around the phone it buzzed again. This time there was no panic when she read the message, only anger.

Why the fuck aren't you here yet? I said 10 minutes. You know what happens when you're late. Get your little ass here. NOW.

Myka could feel the rage starting to swirl in her chest and spread outward as she typed a reply and sent it.

Not interested in seeing or talking to you. Ever. Don't text me again. And we moved so don't bother going by my house.

A second later she had a reply.

I'll see you after school, then. You owe me an explanation. And after you give me one I'm still going to beat your ass black and blue.

Myka growled. "Can you send me that picture you took of my new brand?" she asked Helena. "Someone's not getting the message."

Helena scrolled through her phone and quickly sent Myka the picture.

Myka sent it to Katya.

Like I said, not interested in seeing or talking to you. Show up at my school and I'll take out a TRO. You will never touch me again, Katya.

It was a few minutes before she got another reply. She had hoped not to get one.

Why would you do that? To hurt me?

Myka stared at her phone. Now Kat was going to play the guilt card? Of course she was.

I'm in love, Katya. I have a girlfriend and she's the most amazing, wonderful thing that's ever happened to me. I did it for her, and because you never gave me a choice. I never wanted to be marked and never gave consent for it. This, I wanted. I love her. If you ever cared about me at all, even a fraction of an ounce, just leave me alone.

A reply came quick this time.

Cared about you? Myka, I've always cared about you. I love you. I'm crazy in love with you and I have been since the day you came down the stairs and fixed me a drink.

Myka could feel tears starting again and she didn't want that.

I was a child!

She handed the phone to Helena. "If she says anything else would you please answer? You can say anything you want, no holds barred."

"Absolutely," Helena said without hesitation.

"And read what's already there, I'm not interested in hiding anything from you. Okay?"

"Sure," Helena said, scanning the texts. "Oh she's trying to make you feel guilty when she was the abuser? That's just uncouth."

Myka nodded. "I might go crazy if I have to keep talking in circles. Plus I want her to know that no matter what she says, she can't force me to engage. She can say whatever she wants to you and feel helpless knowing you have my phone and she has no way to reach me."

Helena nodded again and the phone buzzed.

You didn't act like a child. Don't give me that bullshit.

Helena sent a scathing reply.

This is Myka's girlfriend. She doesn't wish to speak with you and from now on whatever you say will only be seen by my eyes. I don't feel the need to pass your words on to her. You are a predator, not a loving, devoted partner. The things you put Myka through make me sick. You call yourself a dominant but you flouted the guidelines of safe, sane and consensual, instead doing whatever you pleased no matter how it affected Myka. But she's come through it and healed and you won't get your claws in her again. Now back the fuck off.

Give the phone back to Myka.

I won't.

Do it now.

No.

Please!

No, Katya. This is the end. If you persist we will file for a restraining order.

"She said please? What the fuck?" Myka asked, reading over Helena's shoulder.

"Would you like to respond?" Helena asked, holding the phone out. It was Myka's after all. She prayed her girlfriend would say no, though.

"No no, I'm just shocked and kind of amused."

They both sat staring at the phone and when fifteen minutes had passed with no reply Myka shut the phone off entirely and put it in the drawer of the nightstand.

"I need to just... I need to just--"

She was interrupted by the sound of the front door opening and laughter filtered into Helena's bedroom. Frankly she was glad for the interruption. She needed a distraction.

"Hey, Myka?" Helena asked as Myka stood from the bed and headed for the door.

"Yeah?"

"After Linus leaves can we tell my mum? Please? In case anything happens, then at least she'll know what's going on?"

Myka nodded and waited for Helena to join her before she opened the door.

--

After greeting Jacqueline and Linus but before everyone had a chance to start settling down, Helena asked for a moment alone with Linus, and Jacqueline and Myka settled in the kitchen, leaving the other two in the living room.

"First of all I'd like to say I'm very pleased to meet you; I'm Helena," HG said, extending her hand.

Linus smiled at her and shook her hand lightly. "Pleased as well," he nodded.

"Secondly I'd like to say... I'm so very sorry for how I treated you the other night. It was childish and unfair and had nothing to do with you. I was going through some feelings not easy for me to process and I took it out on you. I only hope you can forgive me and still might want to know me," she concluded, tears in her eyes.

He seemed to hesitate for a moment with whether it would be okay to hug her, and then went for it, giving her an affectionate but brief hug. "Of course I still want to know you. I didn't expect you to be my number one fan. I didn't expect to be called a pervert, either, but such is life," he teased. "Think nothing more of it, and thank you for your apology. You're a brave young lady, I think. It takes maturity and heart to apologize to someone and I appreciate it."

Helena sighed with relief at the hug and his words, and she nodded, then they both joined Jacqueline and Myka in the kitchen.

After tea was served they all fell into conversation.

"So what do you do for work?" Myka asked Linus.

"I'm a detective," he answered, sipping his tea.

Myka and Helena exchanged looks. "So if someone needed a restraining order, they could go to you?" Myka asked, trying to sound rhetorical, but the look on Jacqueline's face let her know how unsuccessful her endeavor was.

"Girls, what's going on?" Jacqueline asked, folding her arms across her chest.

Myka sort of sank down in her chair, blushing.

Helena leaned over to whisper to her. "Do you want me to tell them? We'd have to lay it all out at the police station anyhow, don't you think?"

Myka sighed and nodded.

"Well," Helena began, looking from her mum to Linus and back to her mum. "Someone who used to hurt Myka just got out of jail and contacted her," she said, trying to sum it up as vaguely as possible. "She's threatened to show up at school tomorrow even though Myka made it very clear she didn't want any further contact."

Linus's brows furrowed. "Do you have a record of Myka requesting no further contact?" he asked.

Helena nodded and reached for Myka's pocket.

"My phone's in the bedroom, I'll go get it," Myka said, still blushing as she went to retrieve it. She navigated to Kat's texts and handed the phone to Linus when she returned.

Linus scrolled through the messages and raised his eyebrows. "Not only has she disregarded your request but she has also expressly threatened you with great bodily harm. You should have no problem getting a protective order if she ever contacts you again." He handed her back the phone. "Especially if -- was she in jail for hurting you?"

"Thank you," Myka said, pocketing the phone and sliding back into her chair. "And yes, she was."

"All right, well I don't see that you'd have a problem, but if you do, ask for me."

"Thanks," Helena beamed.

"That's very kind of you, thank you," Myka said with a nod, still rather subdued.

Linus could sense Myka's discomfort and stretched with a yawn. "Well, it's late and I've got an early morning tomorrow... I'd better be off. It was nice to see you girls," he said, standing and giving Jacqueline a kiss on the cheek before heading for the door.

She got up and walked him out while Myka and Helena retreated to Helena's bedroom.

Myka climbed onto the bed and lay staring at the ceiling, thinking about everything. Why did this have to happen now? She was so happy with Helena. What if this drove HG away? The thought made her sick to her stomach and she started to cry.

Helena was next to her in an instant, laying down, pulling Myka into her arms. "I'm so sorry, love," she whispered, stroking Myka's hair. "It'll be okay, baby, it will. Linus will help if we need it..."

"I don't want to lose you," Myka cried.

"Oh, Myka, you could never," Helena breathed, squeezing her tighter. "Don't you realize that the only way you could lose me is if you left me?"

"I'd never leave you," Myka whispered back, melting into the embrace.

They had a few minutes to themselves before Jacqueline came in and sat next to them on the edge of the bed. "RIght then, full disclosure," she requested.

Myka wiped her eyes and took a few shaky breaths, then launched into the whole sordid story. Helena held her the entire time and she was grateful for that. When she was done she prepared for Mrs. Wells to throw her out, and held her breath, looking away.

"Myka, dear, your body language tells me you're ashamed of the story. Is that true?"

"Of course," Myka said, tears welling up all over again. "Now you're going to want nothing to do with me and you're going to forbid Helena from being with me."

"Oh, no dear," Jacqueline said, shaking her head. "First of all, nothing that happened to you as a child was your fault. You have nothing to be ashamed of. Secondly, you are the best thing that has ever happened to my daughter and nothing that surfaces from your past shall ever change that. Thirdly, have you seen me try to forbid Helena something? It tends to work out terribly."

The last was obviously a joke and Myka gave a little snort of laughter, wiping her eyes before the newly-welled tears could fall. "Are you sure, though?" she asked, not daring to believe it.

"Of every word," Jacqueline said seriously, laying a hand on Myka's knee and giving a squeeze. "I've said it before and I'll say it again: you are a treasured addition to this family."

Myka sat up and hugged her. "Thank you," she said quietly. "I've never had that."

"I know, and your parents are utter imbeciles for not appreciating the wonderful daughter they were given."

"Thank you," Myka said again, starting to feel not so hopeless.

"And this Katya bitch does not want to deal with me," Jacqueline announced suddenly after Myka had pulled back from the hug. "Linus might just make her arrest paperwork disappear and she won't get a bail hearing for a few days..."

Myka and Helena both stared at her.

Jacqueline winked and stood to leave. "Good night, dears."

"Night Mum."

"Good night, Jackie."

When the door closed behind her Myka breathed a huge sigh of relief that everything was out in the open and she wasn't banned from the Wells household. She rolled over and pulled Helena close.

"Mum must have been really pissed. I can't believe she said bitch," Helena noted.

"I need you," Myka said, squeezing Helena's arms. "Take off your clothes."

Helena wasn't going to argue with that request/demand. Her breathing was already starting to pick up as she sat and began unbuttoning the front of her dress, then shook her head at herself and just peeled it off over her head. She took off her socks and bra, then got out of her panties and knelt next to Myka, sitting back on her heels with her hands folded in her lap. The hungry, needy way Myka looked at her threatened to undo her before they'd even touched. How did Myka do that?

Myka just looked at her for a few minutes, appreciating every inch of Helena's gorgeous body, her beautiful, trusting face, her otherworldly, perfect hair. "Come up here," she said, tugging Helena toward her. "Put one leg over..." She helped Helena into the position she wanted - one knee on either side of her face - and gripped her girlfriend's hips, pulling Helena's glistening pussy down onto her waiting mouth.

Helena gasped, putting her hands behind her to keep her from falling. Oh God. Myka's tongue.

"No," Myka growled. "Sit forward. Grab the headboard for balance if you need to."

Helena instantly complied, pushing off with her hands to give her the leverage she needed to lean forward instead of back. She wrapped her fingers around the top of the headboard and squeezed.

Myka licked and sucked and nuzzled, then announced as she bit Helena's thigh, "I want you coming in my mouth in less than three minutes."

Helena groaned and didn't bother asking 'or what?' because she had no intention of disappointing Myka. Practically the first swipe of her girlfriend's tongue had her on the edge anyway; she was primed and ready. And Myka was so, so good with her mouth.

Myka gripped Helena's ass, hard, digging her fingers in while her mouth worked her girlfriend over, lips, tongue and teeth kissing, pushing, licking, nipping, and when she sucked Helena's clit into her mouth she could feel the shaking in Helena's thighs, the tension in Helena's stomach, the rasping of Helena's breath. She was surrounded by the sensations of her girl and she welcomed it, sucking harder on her girlfriend's clit and flicking it rapidly with her tongue until Helena cried out and came in her mouth.

Helena trembled and tensed, bliss ripping through her, pulse raging in her ears and shapeless light bursting across her vision, and when the feeling finally released her she slumped forward, head resting on the headboard as she gasped for breath. She was vaguely aware of Myka's gentle hands stroking the backs of her thighs. She was vaguely aware of anything, really, until Myka's voice reached her ears.

"Good girl," Myka purred, urging Helena off her to lay next to her, tighty tweaking a nipple until her girlfriend whimpered and she saw coherence return to those bright, dark eyes. "There you are," she said softly, releasing the captive nipple.

"I didn't go anywhere, the world just slipped away," Helena breathed.

Myka undid her jeans and guided Helena's hand inside them. "Please," she whispered.

Helena gasped at the action, the word and the heat under her fingertips. She fluttered a light touch over Myka's panties, heart skipping a beat when she found them wet.

"Please," Myka said again, arching into Helena's hand. "Helena, please," she begged, covering her face, rocking her hips, trying to get firmer contact.

"Yes, anything you want," Helena said, awestruck, pressing her fingertips harder and starting to rub.

"Inside," Myka keened. "I need you inside."

Helena nearly came again at that and pulled the crotch of Myka's panties aside to slide one finger through her slickness and gently push inside. She couldn't help the wanton moan that forced its way out at the feeling. It was incredible, getting to touch Myka like this finally. And Myka was so wet, which made it even better. "Anything you want, just tell me," she repeated, wiggling her finger before curling it against Myka's g-spot with a little pressure.

Myka gasped and bucked and reached above her head to grab the headboard. "More."

"Another finger?" Helena asked, hovering her middle finger at Myka's entrance, circling but not pressing inside.

"Yes, fuck, another finger," Myka groaned. "Helena, please. Fuck me. Stop asking and just fuck me. I need you."

Helena nearly fell over with the rush of pleasure Myka's words sent crashing against her, almost like a wave trying to drown her. She pushed her middle finger in to join the first and then slid both out, thrusting firmly back in. "You feel so good," she gasped, pulling out and pushing in again, meeting Myka's hips thrust for thrust. "I love you so fucking much, Myka..."

Myka couldn't form a coherent sentence but Helena's words soothed her and blanketed her in safety and allowed her to fully lose herself in the moment. Helena fucked her hard, but smooth, and she writhed and moaned and clenched her thighs to keep Helena's hand from getting too far away, and after her girlfriend's skilled application of prolonged pressure to her g-spot she felt everything collapse, then expand. She knew she screamed; she couldn't help it. It had been so long since she'd shared herself with anyone, and Helena played to all her strengths and weaknesses like the goddess she was, and it was perfect, and Myka felt so fucking good she almost couldn't stand it. Her cunt trembled in the aftermath and her legs shook, her hands slowly releasing the headboard to reach for Helena, who folded effortlessly into her embrace, kissing her cheeks, her nose, her forehead, her lips, and Myka held her tight, praying Helena would know how amazing it was and how fucking perfect she was and how good and safe and loved and fucking strung out on pleasure she made Myka feel. It was like a high. It was probably the best orgasm she'd ever had in her life.

After she thought she could finally speak without crumbling, Myka gave Helena a particularly tight squeeze and murmured "I love you too, baby. So much. And HG, just in case you couldn't tell, that was incredible."

Chapter Text

Chapter Ten

Myka was waiting for Helena after school and just got done sending her girlfriend a naughty text and smirking when a hand closed around her wrist. She automatically tried to jerk away and when she looked up into Katya's fiery, angry eyes she froze, the phone falling from her hand. Scream, she told herself. Hit her. Kick her. Run. But she couldn't breathe and the walls were closing in too fast, her vision blurring at the edges until she couldn't even see in front of her. She felt her feet moving but couldn't tell where she was going. It was all she could do to breathe in and out because even that seemed impossible. This was even worse than the day when her parents had yelled at her in front of Helena.

When she was aware of her surroundings again she was in a moving vehicle. Katya's of course, she knew without even looking at the driver's seat. She pretended to still be unaware, letting the situation unfold itself to her, taking stock of everything before she would make a move.

She listened. The only sounds were the humming of Katya's car, the tires on the road and the quiet rock music playing on the radio.

She tried to figure out how fast they were going because she'd need to know whether she could safely jump out of the car while it was moving. They were going too fast. So she'd just have to take a swing and hope Katya pulled over before they crashed.

But when she went to throw a punch her wrist jerked back and her shoulders ached and the sound of rattling metal reached her ears. Of course. She was cuffed. Why hadn't she noticed her hands were behind her back?

She saw Katya glance at her out of the corner of her eye. "Good. You're awake. Or alert, or whatever you call it when you come out of whatever you were in."

Myka didn't mention it was called a panic attack. "You're fucked, you realize that, don't you? You'll be back in jail before the day is over. Prison, probably, this time."

"It'll be worth it," Katya said with a sneer.

Myka tried not to show how much that sneer unsettled her. Or that comment.

They were at Kat's place in a few minutes and Myka was relieved. Helena would call Jacey, who knew where Kat lived. She would make no mention of any of that to Katya because she wasn't stupid or cocky and she wanted to keep her advantage.

Kat cuffed her ankles and gagged her before getting her out of the car. Unfortunately this was not a strange occurrence to the neighbors - they may not have seen it in a few years, but they were used to seeing it all the time back in the day so Myka held no hope of any of them calling the police. If her hands were cuffed in front of her she could have at least tried signing 'help' to Mrs. Baker, the sweet deaf lady across the street, but behind her back even that wasn't possible.

Katya dragged her inside and into the dungeon, bolting the heavy door behind them, and then shoved Myka up against her St. Andrew's Cross. She put a cuff on each wrist and attached each of them to the cross with a long chain and Myka had to give her points for being thorough. Obviously Kat knew she would put up a fight if she risked uncuffing her to re-cuff her to the cross.

She removed the original pair of cuffs and gave a yank on both chains, then clipped each cuff tightly to the eye bolts on the top of the X frame. Myka jerked and tried to get her hands out, but they were too tight. Kat had never been concerned with trivial things like fucking circulation anyway.

Kat repeated the process with Myka's ankles, and once again she tried to get free but it was no use. When Kat removed the gag, she growled. "You're dead, Katya. I'll slit your fucking throat."

"Don't talk to me like that," Katya snapped, pulling her head back so she could slap her face. "And someone will have to come rescue you first, which is highly unlikely given that I texted your dear little Helena that you had to run errands and you'd see her at her house later."

Myka tried not to smirk. Unlike Katya, Helena actually knew her and would see right through a text like that. Myka would never go off and do errands instead of being with her girl. Helena knew that. HG would have already tried to call her, and when she didn't answer, she'd know something was very, very wrong. Especially given Kat's threats the previous night. So, Myka would just grin and bear whatever Kat was about to do to her until someone showed up.

Katya cut the back of Myka's shirt up the middle and unsnapped her bra, then reached around and undid her pants, pushing them down along with her panties until Myka felt them around her knees. She gritted her teeth to keep from antagonizing the woman with some nasty comment.

When Kat's hand started to drift back up the inside of her thigh, though, she said one word in a very calm, controlled and clear voice. "No."

Kat snatched her hand away like she'd been burned and Myka let out a shaky breath of relief. The relief was short lived though when Kat's hand connected solidly with her bare ass. Not like she hadn't expected it, but it was still unpleasant. She was spanked again, and again, and again, over and over until her ass burned and stung like hell. It was quick - Kat probably knew she was on borrowed time despite what she said - and Myka was hurting within a few minutes. When she felt it stop, she worried. She tried to turn and see what Kat was doing but she couldn't turn far enough.

She heard a whoosh and when the bullwhip sliced across her back, she couldn't help crying out. She could feel blood dripping down from the lash and prayed Helena would get here soon. Or the police, or whoever.

--

Helena was beside herself when Myka wasn't out front of school, then when she got the text about errands she knew it wasn't right. Her fingers shook as she dialed Jacey, telling her what happened and asking if she knew Kat's address. Jacey spit fire and told Helena to stay where she was, and within ten minutes she and Rebecca were there. Helena got in the back seat, thanking her and Rebecca profusely, then asked them if she should call the police.

"Yes," Rebecca said instantly, knowing if the police weren't on the way as well then her lover would probably kill Katya.

Helena called and asked for Linus, told him the situation and the address, and he told her he was on his way as they spoke.

"She's gonna have the basement door locked. We need a way to get in," Jacey said.

"There's an electric screwdriver in the box of tools in the trunk. We'll just have to take the hinges off the door if we get there before the police."

--

Helena could hear Myka screaming as soon as they reached the front door, and without thinking she slammed her elbow through the glass and didn't care if she got cut reaching in to unlock the door. She jerked the door open and Jacey moved past her to lead the way, and they were standing in front of the basement door within seconds.

Jacey pounded on the steel. "Open this door you fucking lunatic cunt!" she screamed.

Rebecca was already working on the hinges while Helena was in heartbroken tears.

--

Katya froze for a split second, then sighed. "Fun's over. They'll probably be in here in less than five minutes." She spoke loudly to be heard over Myka's screams. "Shut up. You're lucky I didn't cut up your new brand." She reached down and undid the cuffs from Myka's ankles, then wrists and watched her slump to the ground and curl up into a ball on her side. "You're getting blood on my carpet you ungrateful little bitch," she snarled.

All Myka would let herself think about was that Helena came through. She'd known her girl would, but having it confirmed was more than enough to comfort her despite the horrendous pain tormenting her back, ass and thighs. Tears blurred her vision but she could hear the whir of the screwdriver they were using to unhinge the door. She forced herself to reach down and pull up her pants at least, even if she couldn't hide the mess on her back since her shirt was sliced in half.

--

To everyone's surprise it wasn't Jacey that went after Katya first, it was Helena. She grabbed a wooden paddle off of one wall and approached Katya.

Kat held up her hands in surrender, especially since they could all hear the police sirens getting closer. Helena almost put the paddle down and ran to Myka instead, but it would only take a second and the smug, malicious smirk on Katya's face made her so angry it was almost a blind rage, and she swung it like a baseball bat, so hard that when it connected with Katya's upper arm they all heard the bone snap before Katya screamed.

Then Helena was at Myka's side, crying and apoogizing for not getting there sooner and holding Myka's head in her lap, stroking her hair, and Jacey was on Katya, once again having the opportunity to break her fingers.

"Myka, my God, I'm so sorry I wasn't faster, I called Jacey as soon as I got your text, I--"

Myka's voice was scratchy but she interrupted her girlfriend anyway. "Baby, stop. You're here. That's all that matters. She didn't do anything that won't heal. I love you. You're my knight in shining armor, baby."

"I love you so much," Helena sobbed, and she was still in hysterics when the cops came swarming in, guns drawn.

One of the cops hauled Jacey off of Katya and cuffed her while another cuffed Katya, despite her screaming about her broken arm and fingers.

Linus came and squatted down beside Helena and Myka. "I've called for an ambulance already, they should be here any minute." He had a blanket from his car in his hands and held it out to Helena, who took it gratefully and covered Myka with it. "Which one is she?" he then asked.

"The blonde," Myka answered. "With the broken arm," she added with a smirk.

"How did she get a broken arm?"

"I hit her with one of her paddles," Helena growled, not even thinking of lying.

"So, injury from unknown source. Got it," Linus said with a serious nod.

"I would hug you if I could move without screaming," Myka told him.

"You just relax until the ambulance gets here," he said, even as the EMTs came into the room with a gurney. "They're here."

"You can't put her on her back!" Helena cried to the EMTs as soon as she saw the gurney. "Or strap her down! She's- she's- she's- her back is hurt!"

Linus moved out of the way so one of the EMTs could crouch down next to Myka instead. "Let that one go," he said to his officers, nodding toward Jacey.

"Your back is injured, Ma'am?" the EMT asked.

"And my ass, and thighs," Myka groaned. "I don't need a hospital, though, it's just--"

"Myka Bering!" Helena shrieked through her tears.

"I meant to say point me in the direction of the gurney, Sir," Myka amended with a smirk. "Can I lay on my side or my stomach on that thing?"

"Your side would be acceptable, if you can, Ma'am," the EMT said. "Can you stand or do you need assistance? I'll ask you all of the necessary questions on the way to the hospital."

"I can stand," Myka told him. But when she moved it hurt too much and she gritted her teeth against the pain, sweat breaking out over her forehead and the back of her neck, and she slumped back to the ground in frustrated tears.

"It's okay, Ma'am, we're here to help you, it's our job," the EMT said gently. "We'll be very careful. Okay?"

Myka nodded, unable to speak.

When the two EMTs took her under the arms and slowly lifted her up she cried harder, but wouldn't give Kat the satisfaction of screaming again.

She held her breath as they helped her onto the gurney, and released it once she was laying on her side.

"We're legally required to strap you in. Where can we put the straps?" the second EMT asked.

"Knees and head, I guess," Myka said shakily.

They were gentle about it and made sure she was okay once she was strapped in, then loaded the gurney into the ambulance. Helena jumped in after them and sat on the bench on the side Myka was facing, and reached out to hold her hand.

The female EMT started an IV while the male asked all of the background and insurance questions, then moved up front to drive.

"I'm going to give you something for the pain," the female said as they started moving, and Myka's eyes went wide.

"No! No, I don't want that," she protested. "I'm declining. It makes me sick and I want a clear head."

"Myka, are you sure?" Helena asked gently.

"What about just some ibuprofen?" the EMT suggested.

Myka closed her eyes and squeezed Helena's hand but again declined. "No, thank you. She's done worse and I never took pain meds before. I'm fine."

The EMT hesitated before responding, but forged ahead. "Ma'am, I can put you in contact with a domestic violence counselor," she said awkwardly but determindely.

"What?" Myka asked, then realized what the woman thought. "Oh, God, she's not my partner. Thank you for your concern, it's very appreciated, but this little trip to her place was non-consensual and her ass is going right back to jail. This one here is my partner." She squeezed Helena's hand again and gave her girlfriend a pained smile.

"Thank God," the woman said, rolling her eyes skyward in relief. "I try not to judge, but when women are in abusive relationships and don't want help, it's tough."

The ambulance hit a rough patch of road and Myka grimaced, tears leaking from the corners of her eyes. "We were together when I was younger. I didn't know BDSM was supposed to be any different than this. I know better now."

The EMT shifted uncomfortably but nodded. "Sure."

"You don't sound convinced," Myka said, unable to hold back a soft snort of amusement.

"It's none of my business," the EMT said, doing her best to hide a smirk.

Helena frowned. "Myka only spanks me when I deserve it," she said quietly.

The EMT choked.

"HG, you don't have to do that," Myka laughed. "And that's not true, anyway."

"Myka would never abuse me like this," Helena said, nodding toward her girlfriend. Apparently she was the only one not amused. "And when she does punish me she's always very fair and--"

"Helena, stop!" Myka interrupted, laughing harder. The movement hurt and she groaned.

Luckily the ambulance finally stopped and the EMT opened the heavy back doors. "Ladies," she said, giving them a wink as she hopped out and waited for the driver so they could get the gurney down.

--

The nurse asked Myka to undress once they were in a curtained area with a bed and monitors, and Helena helped her. Myka cried as the pants slid down over her broken skin, and again because part of her shirt was slightly stuck in one of the lashes on her lower back, but Helena was so gentle and fluttery and sweet and went at whatever pace Myka asked her to, and when she was naked she climbed onto the bed on her stomach. The nurse had flattened it so she wouldn't be arched up while laying that way.

Helena poked her head out to tell the nurse that Myka was undressed, and the woman nodded, holding up a finger. Helena nodded back her understanding and moved to sit in the chair next to the bed. Now that she could fully see the extent of the damage her own tears slid down her cheeks again. "I'm never letting you out of my sight for as long as I live," she cried.

"It's not your fault, love," Myka promised. "If I didn't have a stupid panic attack I would have decked the bitch. I tried to make myself do it but I could barely breathe and my vision went almost black... worse than that day we were in the car and it happened. It's so fucking stupid and frustrating," she said angrily.

"It's not your fault either," Helena said, shaking her head. "Let's just blame the actual fucking cunt responsible and call it a day."

"Okay, deal," Myka whispered, just as the nurse came through the curtain.

When she turned around she shrieked "Jesus fucking Christ!" and dropped her clipboard. She scrambled to pick it up, her face bright red. "Oh God, I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. I'll get you another nurse," she said, looking like she might cry. "It's my first week and I didn't expect-- I'll get you another nurse. I'm sorry."

"It's fine," Myka said. "Really, I appreciate your honesty. I don't need another nurse."

"Are you sure? I feel so stupid. I'm so unprofessional. I'll probably be fired before the month is up. Fuck my life."

Myka laughed, and even Helena giggled softly. "I'd rather have a human than a robot. It's fine," Myka assured her.

The nurse breathed a sigh of relief and set her clipboard down on the foot of the bed, then went through drawers and got out the things she was going to need to clean Myka up.

Helena watched her take out bottles of sterile water, syringes, forceps and a tube of some kind of ointment or cream and set them all on the rolling instrument tray. A sudden, bone-chiling thought struck her and she jumped out of her chair, eyes wild. "Myka, did she--"

"No," Myka interrupted quickly. "No, love, she didn't."

Helena sank back down in the chair, sobbing with relief. "Okay," she said. "Myka I'm so sorry..."

"Hey... we agreed to blame the fucking cunt responsible, remember?"

"Yes," Helena said, trying to calm down.

When the atmosphere had settled, the nurse spoke. "Okay, so... this is going to be really unpleasant and I'm sorry in advance. If you need to scream and cuss at someone, my name is Beyonce."

Helena blinked. "Your nametag says Linda."

The nurse snapped her fingers. "Damn... all right, my name is Linda."

Helena forgot her melancholy mood for a brief moment and laughed.

Linda washed her hands and put on a pair of gloves, then opened one of the water bottles and drew a syringe full. She let it dribble slowly over the lash highest up Myka's back, right below her neck, and Myka screamed into her pillow.

Helena's heart broke over and over again as Linda repeated the motion with all the wounds and Myka never stopped screaming into the pillow.

"Okay, I don't need the forceps because the water flushed everything out like I'd hoped," Linda said. "You're almost done, sweetie, you're doing great, okay?"

Myka just sobbed into her pillow and Helena wanted to reach into Katya's chest and tear her heart out, crushing it to dust.

Linda took her gloves off and tossed them in the biohazard bin, then washed her hands again and re-gloved up to put on the ointment. "This has a disinfectant component to it but the doctor will probably want to put her on oral antibiotics too," she said to Helena since Myka was in too much distress to expect her to remember that.

Helena nodded.

"I'm going to put ointment on your wounds and then you're done being touched," Linda then said loudly but kindly to Myka before squeezing some ointment onto her gloved finger and starting the laborious process of tenderly covering the bloody mess.

As soon as Linda touched her Myka squeezed Helena's hand, trying to focus on how amazing it was to have someone there with her who loved her like HG did.

When it was finally done, Myka had stopped crying and was just breathing hard, holding Helena's hand while Linda cleaned up the supplies and washed her hands again.

"Myka," the nurse said quietly. "I'm sorry I had to cause you more pain to start healing you."

"Beyonce," Myka said, her voice scratchy, when Linda had just reached the curtain.

"Hm?"

"If anyone tries to fire you, let us know."

The nurse smiled brightly at her and ducked out of the 'room'.

--

The doctor came in shortly after and introduced herself. "Hello Myka, I'm Dr. Jansen," she said, then turned to Helena and extended a hand. "And you are?"

Helena shook it while wiping tears with the back of her other hand. "I'm Helena Wells, Ma'am, I'm her girlfriend." She sniffled.

"It's nice to meet you both. I see Linda made sure your wounds got cleaned and coated with antibiotic ointment, but I'm going to prescribe you some oral antibiotics as well. I also see the EMTs say you refused any pain medication, even ibuprofen. Is that accurate?"

"I don't want it," Myka confirmed with a nod.

"Okay." The doctor sat on the edge of the bed, down at the foot of it, and Helena appreciated the gesture of humanity and relatability. "Now, given the fact that I can't perform a proper physical examination at the moment, I'm going to ask you to tell me what happened so I can decide whether to order an X-ray."

Myka sighed. "There's no need. This is all she did, apart from a spanking and a slap to my face. No blunt force or impacts."

"Okay," the doctor said, making notes as Myka talked. "Did you lose consciousness at all or hit your head?"

"No. I had a panic attack when I first saw her, which is technically a loss of mental consciousness, and that's how she got me into her car, but I didn't hit my head or pass out, no."

"Okay. And no twisted arms or wrists, ankles, anything?"

"No."

"All right. Thank you for talking with me, Myka, I imagine it's not easy to discuss. I'll get the prescription ordered for your antibiotics and we're going to keep you overnight, at least until the wounds close and you can wear clothing. Would you like a nonstick pad to rest on your skin so you can wear a sheet or a blanket?"

"Just for my lower half, thank you," Myka said.

The doctor opened a drawer and pulled out a pad, opening it up and resting it lightly over Myka's backside and thighs, then pulled the sheet up to her waist. "Take care, and I'll see you again in the morning and we'll decide whether you can go home."

"Thank you," Myka said, and Helena echoed the sentiment.

"Thank you, Dr. Jansen, everyone here has been lovely."

As the doctor exited, Linda poked her head in. "Myka, there's a detective here waiting to speak with you. Are you comfortable with that or should I ask him to come back later?"

"It's fine, he can come in," Myka said, figuring it was Linus.

"M'kay."

A few minutes later Linus came in followed by a scrawny forensic tech with a camera. "How are you doing, Myka?" he asked.

"I've been better," Myka deadpanned.

"I hate to impose but forensics needs pictures of your injuries. Would you like me to step outside the curtain until he's finished?"

"I just got my ass covered," Myka groaned, teasing Linus. "You can stay. I don't care. You saw everything already anyway. HG, can you be the one managing the sheets and everything, though?"

"Of course," Helena said, standing and leaning over to gently peel the sheet and the nonstick pad away from Myka's skin.

The tech snapped over a dozen photos from different angles and at different distances, then nodded to Linus and left.

Helena carefully recovered Myka how the doctor had done it, then sat back in her chair and held Myka's hand again.

"Thanks, love," Myka whispered.

"Anything for you, Myka," Helena replied.

"I know, and that means the world to me," Myka said, tears glistening in her eyes.

"Are you okay to answer some questions?" Linus asked when the girls had been quiet for a minute. He didn't want to interrupt.

"Yeah," Myka said. "Yeah. And thank you, for everything."

"I do want to be clear about one thing, first," Linus said, turning to Helena. "If you had broken someone's arm without a cause as big as this, I would not be covering for you," he said quietly. "I'm not that guy. But you had every right to do what you did and you were defending the person you love. Even if the threat of physical danger had passed by the time you acted, I understand what you did and would have done the same thing in your place. That is why I'm covering, not because you're Jacqueline's daughter."

Helena felt well and truly scolded, but not in a bad way, and nodded at his words. "Of course, Linus. Thank you. I assure you I don't go around assaulting people on a whim."

"No, just furniture," he said with a wry grin, and Myka burst out laughing while Helena managed to look affronted. "Do you know I was actually about to call the squad out to your house? I thought there'd been a break-in."

Helena turned bright red and covered her face with her hands. "Believe me, I'm still suffering over that incident and my lack of self-control," she groaned. "We needn't bring it up..."

"I'm just glad Myka has you in hand because we all know your mother doesn't have the heart or the fortitude to discipline you, young lady."

Helena thought she was going to sink into the floor and die. "Please, pleeeeease, can we not?"

Linus laughed good naturedly and turned back to Myka. "Okay, in all seriousness now, can you walk me through what happened and give as many details as you can remember?"

Myka walked him through everything she could think of, then prepared to answer specific questions.

"Did she have your seatbelt on you?"

Myka thought back. "Yes. I remember her having to take it off to get me out of the car."

"Did you notice anyone on your way in to the house that may have seen you?"

"No. They wouldn't think anything of it, though. She used to drag me inside gagged and cuffed all the time."

Linus nodded. "I mean basically she's screwed. Because of your history, her jail time, her texted threats to you, and your testimony as well as your injuries, she's screwed. But I like to iron out every detail possible because defense attorneys can be merciless pricks. If I think of any more questions I'll ask you later."

"Is Mum here?" Helena asked him.

"She is," Linus nodded. "Also Jacey, Rebecca, and Myka's mother."

Myka snapped her head around in shock and cried out at the pain, quickly flopping back to the bed. "My mother?"

"She arrived with Jacqueline. She's really unpleasant."

Myka laughed again. "That's a grossly negligent understatement. Why is she here?"

"I have no idea. Sorry," Linus shrugged.

"Well I'm staying the night so can you tell whoever wants to see me they can wait until I'm in a room?"

"Absolutely."

--

It was another hour before Myka got moved to a room, but it was worth the wait because she got her own room. Not that the amount of time and having her own room were related, but whatever.

She cried a little when she transfered from the ER bed to the room bed, and Helena was there to kiss her tears away and stroke her hair until she settled back down.

Helena's jaw dropped when her mum appeared in the doorway with Myka's mum literally by the ear. She squeaked when she saw Ashley rubbing her bum. What the bloody hell! "Mum!" she complained, getting to her feet. "Please tell me you did not cross that very illuminated boundary!"

Myka's eyes went wide and she turned her head away from Helena and toward the door.

"Don't be so dramatic, dear," Jacqueline said, waving a hand dimissively at her daughter. "Two or three swats on the rear for being an insufferable wretch and she's been good as gold, isn't that right Mrs. Bering?"

Helena didn't know whether to laugh or scream so she just stared.

Myka was amused as fuck, but also just stared. Her mother being dragged by the ear was priceless.

Jacqueline let Ashley go and walked over to hug Helena, while Ashley shuffled awkwardly to stand next to Myka's bed.

Myka looked at her mother, shocked when the bitch actually looked around and found a chair, then pulled it over and sat down. "Are you going to be okay?" Ashley asked, staring down at her hands which were plucking imaginary pieces of lint from her pants.

"Did Jacqueline give you a script?" Myka asked, though her voice was a little less acidic than she'd been going for.

"She may have suggested some things to say since I don't know how to talk to you," Ashley said with a shrug. "We had a long conversation about a lot of things."

"You can go. Your obligatory parental appearance has been fulfilled," Myka said, turning her face away.

"Do you know what it feels like for your daughter to be smarter than you by the time she's five years old?"

Myka's breath caught. Of all the things she could have imagined her mother would ever say, that wasn't even on the list.

"That woman has some strange ways of getting a person to be honest with herself."

Myka said nothing.

"Do you remember your fifth birthday party? When you said that your cake looked like an aggregate of Disney movies?"

The memory flooded into the forefront of her consciousness and she nodded, just barely. "Yes," she whispered.

"I had no idea what aggregate meant. And you only got exponentially smarter from there. But that was the day I started to hate you."

Myka gave a gasping sob.

Helena looked over but Jacqueline laid a hand on her arm and shook her head. "Let them talk."

"All your friends' parents were always saying what a delight you were and asking if I'd be enrolling you in gifted classes. They were jealous of your father and I because you were ours, and all I could think about was the blind rage pounding in my head that I felt like a stupid fucking idiot next to my five-year-old. I still do. I feel like a stupid fucking idiot every time we're in a room together. I've always known I wasn't the brightest, and I figured I'd have dumb kids and our family would never stand out. But then you broke the mold and I hated you for it."

Myka wiped her eyes and sniffled. "Anything else?" she asked tersely.

"I'm sorry she hurt you like this."

The irony stabbed at Myka's gut like a butcher knife and she blew out a long breath before trusting herself to speak. "You've hurt me ten thousand times more than the worst Katya ever did to me," she said, her voice shaky but resolute.

Ashley slowly stood. "I'll wait for Jacqueline in the waiting room." She started to walk away.

"Mom," Myka called out, her voice breaking.

Ashley stopped, closed her eyes, breathed and turned around, stepping back up to the bed. "Yes?"

"Touch my hand, okay? Just for a second. I don't want a hug or a kiss. I know you don't love me but just touch my hand."

Ashley's fingers trembled as she laid her hand on top of her daughter's, just for a fleeting second before she gasped out a choking sob and turned and fled the room.

Myka took a minute to compose herself and then painstakingly rolled on her side to face Helena and Jacqueline. "Thank you for trying."

To her surprise, Jacqueline laughed. "I'm not done," she said dismissively. "Work in progress."

Myka couldn't help her own laugh at that and reached out for Helena.

Helena went to her, taking her hand and kissing it. "Are you okay, love?"

"Yeah," Myka said. And then to Jacqueline or Linus, whichever wanted to answer. "Are Jacey and Rebecca still here?"

"They went for a drive because, and I quote, 'I don't need to break two bitches' fingers in one night'. End quote," Linus said. "Jacey would like Helena to text her when Ashley is gone."

"Gone from the room or gone from the hospital?" Myka snorted.

"From the hospital."

"I'll text her when you leave, then, Mum," Helena said.

"Very good,dear," Jacqueline said. "We should be going, actually. Myka, did she say anything nice?"

Myka stared at her mattress. "She said I've been smarter than her since I was five and that's why she's always hated me."

"For Christ's sake," Jacqueline hissed.

"Oh," Myka said, looking up. "She did say she was sorry that Kat hurt me like this."

Jacqueline wasn't impressed. "That's something, I suppose," she said, shaking her head. "Well, right then, we'd better be going." She leaned over and kissed Helena's head, then Myka's. "Call if you need anything at all."

"Like a cheeseburger?" Myka teased. She was not a fan of hospital food.

Jacqueline tapped her on the nose. "Be good, girls," she said, and left with Linus.

Helena texted Jacey that Ashley would be gone in five or ten minutes, then settled down in her chair, still holding Myka's hand.

"Is Jacey giving you a ride home?" Myka asked her.

"Have you gone mad? I'm going nowhere," Helena said, eyes wide. "They can bring in one of those cot contraptions or I can sleep in this chair."

"Baby, no," Myka said. "School tomorrow. You have to get a good night's sleep."

"I am not going to school tomorrow," Helena informed her. "I thought you told the doctor you'd not hit your head."

Myka afforded her a small smile. "You are going to school, HG."

Tears filled Helena's eyes. "Please don't make me," she whispered. "It's only one day, I'll get notes from our classmates and we can do our homework together here... please, Myka, I can't."

Myka could see that it was a geniune plea and not just Helena trying to get out of class, so she relented. "Okay, baby, okay. Don't cry."

"I can't take the thought of being away from you right now," Helena explained further, her voice catching.

"Okay, love. No school tomorrow. You'll be right here with me all day," Myka told her.

"Thank you," Helena said just as the new nurse came in.

"I'm Heather," she said, staring at Myka's back. "We should cover that or close your door."

Helena blinked, sitting up straighter.

"Why?" Myka asked.

"It looks like you crawled out of a horror movie. It's scary," Heather said.

"Heather!" a shrill voice rang out around the room and the blonde in scrubs was forcibly removed by a stern, middle-aged woman who then rushed back in apologizing. "I'm so sorry. She's not a nurse a'tall. I'm Belinda, I'm your nurse."

"Well who the fuck was that, then?" Helena asked, incensed.

"Helena," Myka warned, shaking her head.

Belinda was a bit taken aback but she rolled with it and answered the question. "One of the doctors' daughters."

"You should keep a shorter leash on your pets," Helena snapped.

"Helena Wells!" Myka said, eyes wide. "Go take a time out while I talk to the nurse."

Helena made a sour face but got up and strode from the room.

"I'm sorry," Myka said, rolling slowly to her stomach and then onto her other side so she could look at her nurse. "She's just really upset about everything."

"Rightfully so," Belinda said. "Don't be too hard on her," she added with a wink.

Myka grinned. "Is it that obvious?"

"You told her t' take a time out. She listened."

Myka grinned wider. "So can I ask why Heather is allowed to roam the halls bothering the patients? She wasn't very sensitive."

"She's got Asperger's, if you know what that is. And she's supposed t' stay in her father's office whenever she's here."

"I know what it is. She probably shouldn't wear scrubs, though, because whatever she says could make the hospital look really bad, Asperger's or not. And with HIPAA I can't imagine the backlash. I thought she was a nurse."

"I'll pass the message along t' the chief of staff," Belinda said. "Now, let's talk about you. Do y' need anything for the pain?"

"No."

"Tough one, are you then?"

"No, I just don't want anything."

"Aye. Let me know if you change your mind."

"I won't, but thanks."

"What's your pain number, one t' ten?"

"Laying still, probably a seven. If I move anything other than my head it's a ten."

Belinda gave her a disapproving look as she noted the information in the computer. "Stubborn lass."

"I don't like my senses dulled," Myka said with a frown.

"Young lady, ibuprofen does not a thing t' your senses and I'm sure a smart lass like yourself knows it."

"I don't want it," Myka insisted, irritated.

"I've gotten the message," Belinda said, tutting at her. "Give me a ring if you need anything. Supper's at six thirty. I'll bring you a menu 'round six."

Myka glanced at the clock. It was about 5:45. "Okay. Thanks," she said.

Belinda nodded and slipped out of the room, and Myka sighed. She was tired of telling people she didn't want anything for pain. She wished they would quit asking.

A few minutes later Helena returned, followed by Jacey and Rebecca who were both laughing at the fact that she'd gotten a time out. They both turned serious when they saw Myka, though.

"Hey Mykes," Jacey said, standing by her bed on the opposite side of where Helena sank down to sit. "How you holdin up?"

"As well as can be expected, Miss 'I don't need to break two bitches' fingers in one day'," Myka teased her.

"Cop man told you I said that, huh? What a narc."

Myka snickered. "Thank you both for coming to my rescue with my girl," she then said gratefully.

"Becs drove because I was seeing red," Jacey admitted. "But she drove like me. Faster, actually. I was damn impressed."

Belinda came back in with the dinner menu for Myka and put a hand to her heart. "Jesus me, we've purple hair and a head full of braids," she said, shaking her head as she handed Myka the menu.

She looked it over and groaned. She quickly marked off chicken, potatoes and apple juice and handed it back to Belinda. "If my friends bring me a cheeseburger, can I have that instead?"

"Most certainly not," Belinda shook her finger at Myka. "Hooligans, the lot of you," she teased with a wink as she left the room.

"Belinda!" Helena called out, jumping to her feet and hurrying to catch up before the nurse left.

"Aye?" Belinda asked, stopping in the doorway and turning to face the girl.

"You seem like a good nurse. I'm sorry I was rude."

"I understand, tis been a rough day for you and your lass." She patted Helena's shoulder.

"Even so, it wasn't fair of me to take it out on you," Helena insisted. "I'm sorry."

"I thank you for the apology, young lady. I hope she's not too hard on y'," she teased.

Helena flushed and glanced at Myka, who was animatedly talking to Jacey and Rebecca, then back to Belinda. "I'm pretty sure I only got a time out instead of a spanking because she's hurt," she said softly. "She's going to be okay, right, Belinda?" she then asked, looking up with tears in her eyes.

"Don't you worry your pretty little head," Belinda said with a firm nod. "She'll be fine."

"Thank you," Helena said, watching as she left, then collecting her emotions before making her way back to her chair.

Myka carefully maneuvered to her stomach and back to her other side so she could face Helena, and reached out a hand. "I didn't even ask you to apologize, love. Thank you for doing that."

"How do you know I wasn't tearing her another asshole?" Helena replied with a smirk.

Myka had enough range of motion to lightly slap her face and loved Helena's blush. "Snarky."

"Ow," Helena complained, though it hadn't really hurt. "I was apologizing, jeez."

"I love you to pieces, HG," Myka said suddenly.

Helena leaned down and kissed her. "I love you too."

--

Jacey and Rebecca had stayed for a little while, then gone home around seven o'clock, and Myka and Helena had watched some tv until ten when Belinda brought in a cot for Helena to sleep on.

"I'm sure if you had your way you'd be in her bed, but don't y' even think on it," the nurse said as she set up the cot and laid out a sheet, blankets and pillow.

"I wouldn't," Helena said. "I know I can't. I wouldn't risk hurting her."

Belinda gave her a wink and left them be.

--

Helena was asleep when Linda poked her head into the room a little after eleven. "Hey," she said quietly to Myka. "My shift is over and I wanted to check in on you before I leave. I feel like I bonded with you guys since I screamed Jesus fucking Christ and you didn't file a complaint."

Myka started laughing and covered her mouth so she wouldn't wake up Helena. "I'm doing fine," she said. "Thanks for checking."

"Hey, can I be further inappropriate and give you guys my cell number? I haven't met many people around yet. Is this area gay friendly, by the way? I really only moved here last week, since I moved for the job. And don't worry, I swear I'm not hitting on you, I can see that you two are together and I'm not that creepy, I just meant give you my number as in potential friends."

Myka listened to the tirade and then laughed again. "My cell phone's in the plastic bag on the chair over by the window. Can you bring it to me? I'll put your number in. And the area is very gay friendly."

"Awesome," Linda said, moving over to grab the phone and bringing it to Myka.

Myka took the phone and blinked when she had a text message alert from her mother, but didn't read it at the moment, she just navigated into her contacts and put in Linda's number as the nurse rattled it off. "I'll give you ours too," she said, and gave first her number and then Helena's.

"Cool. Get some sleep, it's late," Linda said, tipping an imaginary hat and sliding out of the room.

"Did you just give someone my phone number?" Helena mumbled, her face smooshed into her pillow.

By the time Myka opened her mouth to answer Helena was already back asleep. She grinned, but then remembered the text and frowned, finally opening it.

Myka. When you said I have hurt you ten thousand times more than Katya's worst, I should have said I'm sorry.

Myka's frown deepened as she sent a reply.

Did Jacqueline smack you a few more times to get you to say that?

She didn't expect an answer, at least not tonight, so when she was setting her phone down and it vibrated, she raised an eyebrow.

She smacked me several more times to get me to agree to go to a therapist, but not to apologize to you. Those are my words.

Tears filled her eyes and she swiped at them angrily.

Are you sorry? You didn't actually apologize, you only said that you should have.

I didn't realize how deeply I had hurt you. I still have to process that. But yes. I am.

Say it then, Mom.

I'm sorry.

Myka dissolved into tears at that, her fingers shaking as she replied.

I have to go.

Ashley didn't respond again so she put the phone away and curled up, not even sure at all how to feel.