I have almost stopped listening to the recording. I’m not sure why. If anything, its effect on me is stronger. When I do listen, I slip easily into that state where I am not intently listening to Mistress’s beautiful voice, I’m just concentrating on the feelings her voice evokes. Sometimes it’s like my body is completely empty and her voice–a single, perfectly formed word–absolutely fills it. I can tell she speaks softly, with her lips almost touching the microphone, because I can feel her breath as she shapes the word. Then it’s as if my whole body is that microphone, and her voice delicately pulses me right down to my toes.

Wild mood swings continue. The thought has crossed my mind several times that I haven’t felt this good/bad since I was a teenager. Walking on clouds one minute, plunged to the depths the next by thoughts like “she’s too busy to know I exist,” or “there’s no way I’ll ever be special to her. She can have anybody she wants.”

Preoccupation–no, obsession–with the date and time of my next contact with her. I sent her my review of the recording and she e-mailed me, saying she liked it. She ended with “Call me Monday 12pm. MARQUESA” No explanation.

“Nothing concentrates a man’s mind like the prospect of hanging,” Johnson said. He never got an e-mail from the Mistress. I arrange my life around the date and time she specifies. Nothing after that time interests me.

We’ve talked a couple of times on the phone. Polite conversations about what I’d written and what I wanted to order next from her. Readers Digest could print the transcript. I sense curiosity, confidence, intelligence, humor, and even a hint of vulnerability. Not weakness–just a very appealing feminine vulnerability to he effects of a grey day on her mood. Her voice is harder than on the recording, but that recording is so beautifully spoken and miked, that that was bound to be a first impression.

I can tell I’m a much easier “read” to her than she is to me. I can’t get my mind around her personality, to be able to predict how she’ll respond. That’s a turn-on, of course. It also reinforces the impression of her intelligence. Not a trace of insecurity; a very confident woman, the confidence of sex, rather than beauty. I say that because confidence based on sexiness is playful and close, and that is what I feel. The confidence of beauty is more likely to be cool and distant, which is not at all what I’m picking up. It’s only when I’m going over all the things I meant to say or ask afterwards with myself but didn’t that it occurs to me how effortlessly and thoroughly she directed the conversation.

My appetite remains down; I’ve lost 8 pounds since I got the recording. If Mistress gets FDA approval, she may have the diet of the year. My metabolism is up; I feel I need exercise, that I have excess energy I need to burn off. Sex drive is definitely up. Wife sends her compliments to the Mistress, and says the next recording is on her;)

Based on the forgoing physical and emotional symptoms, a 10th grader could probably diagnose my condition. Intellectually, the changes aren’t as easy to pin down. I heard and accepted, at least while listening, the “real” message of the recording, which is submission.

I believed my acceptance of that message would be gradual and, at least to an extent, controlled or moderated by me. That I could “stick my toe in the water” of submission, so to speak. There was no question about the power of the recording to change the way I felt. That should have frightened me, but for some reason, it didn’t.

For one thing, I felt good. Better than I had in a long time. The Neil Young line “It’s better to burn out than it is to rust” ran through my head. I’m an adrenaline/endorphin junkie from way back, and there’s no question this was a rush. Nothing at all like Mistress X, the Domme I had a session with. She has fabulous legs, and the view looking up at them while crawling along behind her with her lap dog will definitely make the highlight film of my life if it “all flashes before me” someday. I looked at this little pug waddling along beside me and he looked up at me with his tongue hanging out panting and I almost said out loud “Yeah, buddy, I know just how ya’ feel.”

That was fun and sexy, but that was all it was. Whatever I’m feeling now is fun and sexy, but that’s not all it is–not by a long shot. Subtract the fun and sex, and what’s left over is what I’m having trouble with. There’s that scene in Jaws where these guys hook a big hunk of meat to an anchor, attach the chain to the dock, and throw the anchor out into the water in the fog.

After they leave, you see the chain slowly go taut until the dock groans, breaks, and gets slowly towed out to sea. Remember it? Now imagine you’re the dock. That’s what it feels like.

The hanging on her every word in e-mails or conversation, the intensity and speed with which my feelings change with respect to those words–how I could interpret them one way and then another–those were the sounds of the dock breaking up. In human terms, they were the flailing arms of someone who hasn’t figured out how to swim yet, but is being towed out to sea. I heard and accepted the message of the recording. But the intellectual part of me was only prepared to get its toe wet.

I woke up from a nap–did I mention I’d been having trouble sleeping? And the answer was as clear as if someone had just spoken to me. There was nothing vague or foggy about it. “You’re her slave. What are you struggling for?

Relax and swim. Submission is like that. It’s so easy.”

(Huge sigh of relief)

(Slapping forehead) “So that’s why she wanted to talk to me!” And did, for free, in spite of the clamor of paying customers. Our one 20 minute conversation was probably interrupted 10 times as she fielded other calls. I couldn’t figure out why she chose to “waste” her valuable time chatting pleasantly with me. Now I knew she wanted to tell me something she knew I might need to know soon.

“Here I am,” she told me, “feminine, intelligent, good humored–a real person. You needn’t be afraid of me.”

She knew that when the “real” message of the recording struck home, it would come with greater force than I was expecting. She knew the waters it would pull me towards were much deeper than I was mentally prepared to swim in. And she knew I would be frightened when I realized those things. So she provided me with what I needed to know if I had the courage to accept the gift of submission that she offered me.

Thank you, Mistress Marquesa.

Read not so wiley’s continuing experience with Hypnotic Domination in “Second Floor”