The room was dimly lit; the only bright light was the occasional strobe that flickered from the ceiling. The base from the speakers all over the room pumped in a slow rhythm. Anna, Tooth, Singh stood with arms crossed scowling. She did not like this at all. The music was fine, but the booths and tables that littered the floor would have to be moved. She turned to Sandy and made a request.

"They need to be moved. They're overlapping the circle." She noticed. The small blonde man clicked away on his phone as he nodded. She was right, of course. This event was one of the most looked forward to all year. It was the annual Sub Shop; a time where unattached, and virgin, subs could put themselves out there to be approached by willing doms. All subs in attendance had to wear collars to show they were looking; the only difference was in color between unattached and virgin.

Subs looking for a new master wore bright yellow collars; a single gold ring hung in the center. While the virgin subs, brand new to the scene, wore a pale blue one with a silver ring. The yellows were free to roam around the club, able to show their interest openly. They knew how the scene worked, how to respectfully decline an unwanted offer. The virgins would be standing in a large circle in the center of the room. They would be approached by interested men and women, but could refuse offers until they felt comfortable. Usually the virgins were accompanied by an unattached sub, for moral support.

Sandy grinned and showed Anna the new layout he quickly drew up. She smiled and nodded, quickly giving him a hug. She called over her husband, Nick, and began to direct. He moved everything; every booth, table and chair by himself. The large Russian man was built like a tank.

"This looks great! Thank you, sweetie." She gushed, placing a quick kiss to his bearded face.

"Anything for you, my dear." He smiled.

Tooth surveyed the large, converted ballroom with excitement. Everything was perfect. She couldn't wait to show their mutual friends. Aster was from Australia, and a very prominent Dom in their subculture, the same was true for Pitch- except for a different origin. Pitch was British. They both had authored numerous papers on the subject, trying to bring awareness to the lifestyle and dispel the many myths popular culture harbored. Aster was a much kinder master than Pitch, in Anna's opinion. He preferred a rewards system to Pitch's discipline. Thankfully both men had decided to base themselves in the states, making keeping in touch much easier.

Sandy pointed to his watch, noting the time. It was past two in the morning, and they still needed to be back by noon to finish touching up the place, prepping the staff, and generally making things perfect. The next night found the club packed to the brim. People stood in line for hours for the chance to get in. Yellow and light blue collars stood out brightly as young men and women waited patiently for their turn.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Amy turned to her new friend. "I can't believe we're here!" She hissed in excitement. She'd been waiting for this event to come around all year; finally getting up the nerve to sign a few consent forms, and purchase her pale blue 'virgin' collar from the owner, Anna. The girl behind her twittered an enthusiastic "I know!"

Inside, Tooth busied herself with her favorite employee: Jackson Overland-Frost. The young man had just turned twenty, and had been working here since he turned eighteen; one of her longest staying employees too. She watched him glide across the floor, delivering drinks with flourish and a disarming smile. He worked his way back to the bar and laid down his tray smirking at his boss.

"Good turnout, huh?" He asked.

"Better than the last three years," She nodded. "I can't believe how many showed up, this is so great!"

"I'm glad. I know how stressed you were this year. I guess those friends of yours brought in the money."

Tooth nodded and glance to her right. "Speaking of friends, here's one now. Pitch! Over here!"

A tall, pale man walked through the crowd. He was dressed in a simple black button down and black slacks. His hair was the same color as his clothes, and slicked back over his head. He flicked his grey eyes from Tooth to Jack as he sauntered up. "Anna, my dear. This is quite impressive." He offered.

"Thanks. We're really proud of it. Thank you for coming, by the way. This is Jack, one of our servers. I've kind of adopted him, so be nice." She warned.

Pitch held out a slender hand. His eyes raked over Jack's form, appraising him from the tips of his abnormally white hair, to his shoes. A slow smile made its way to his face. "It is a pleasure to meet you, Jack. I'm Kozmotis Pitchiner. You can call me Pitch."

"Nice to meet you too." Jack smiled politely as he grasped the offered hand and gave it a firm shake.

"I must say, Jack, you are quite eye catching." The older man purred, stepping close. Pitch reached an arm out to wrap around Jack's shoulders when a voice called out.

"He's not wearin' a collar, mate. Pretty sure Anna said workers were off limits."

Pitch sighed, and returned to his original distance. "How courteous of you to remind me, Aster."

Anna gasped and flung her arms around a tall man. "Bunny! I was wondering where you were. What kept you?"

Aster laughed and returned the hug. He wore a white tee under an open brown silk vest with plain blue jeans. His hair was shaggy, but not overly so, and Jack noticed strands of grey mixed with the deep brown. "Was minglin'. Seein' what's on the market." He said, looking around the club.

Anna spun around on her stool and motioned to Jack. "Aster, this is one of our servers, Jack."

"Oh, yer the one she's always yappin' about? Nice to have a face to put with the name." He gave a bright smile and offered a hand. Jack noticed the black lines of tattoos weaving up his arms. "E. Aster Bunnymund, at yer service."

"A pleasure, I'm sure." Jack smirked. Anna laughed at the perplexed look on Pitch's face as Jack picked up another tray full of drinks and trotted off into the fray. Aster turned to Tooth. "Quite a catch, sheila." He said, watching as the young man danced around the crowds, never once spilling a glass.

"He is, right? I just love that boy. And his teeth! Such a beautiful smile." She cooed dreamily.

"I'd love to see him bound and gagged." Pitch sneered. "Now that would be a beautiful sight."

"Not everyone is into slavery, Koz. Besides, since when are ya into men?" Aster quipped; he jerked as Anna barked a loud laugh.

"I'm not. I was merely stating the obvious. Something I'm sure you appreciated." Pitch snickered as Aster mumbled something about the kid not being gay.

"Oh no, Jack is as straight as a circle." Tooth giggled. The mere thought of her little boy being straight just tickled her funny bone.

"Well then it truly is a shame he's not wearing a collar, wouldn't you say old friend?" Pitch sighed in mock disappointment, sending a glance to Aster. Anna patted his arm.

A crashing of glasses brought the trio to their feet, anxiously looking in the direction of the noise. A young lady in a blue collar stood inside the 'virgin's circle, one arm in the grip of an angry looking older man. Jack stood between them holding the man's wrist with a furious look on his face. Anna gasped as Pitch tensed next to her. Aster was the only one to move. He quickly made his way to the circle, grabbing the back of the older man's shirt and tugging him backward. He released the girls arm and Jack cradled her to his chest as fearful tears ran down her face.

"What the fuck?!" The man yelled, taking a swing at Aster. He missed and fell to his knees.

"What happened here?" Aster looked to Jack. His voice had gone from carefree confidence to commanding and rigid, leaving no room for excuses. Jack told him the guy came up and made the girl an offer, she refused. He got mad and tried to jerk her out of the circle. Aster growled and rounded on the man, green eyes locking on to his form.

"You know the rules. Inside the circle there is no touching the subs. It's what keeps them safe from dung like you." He hissed. He jerked the man up by his jacket and brought his face close as he continued. "You're no longer welcome here if ya can't control yerself. Get out."

"Who the fuck do you think you are, man?"

"The name's Aster." Jack watched as multiple yellow collared people turned to stare. Tooth seemed to be right; looks like he was more popular than Jack thought. Aster's voice lowered. "My friend and I are co-hostin' this event. What we say goes. If you aren't gonna act respectfully, we'll put you in a collar and send you to the wolves. Mind your place before I make you." Aster snarled, keeping eye contact with the man after his threat, daring him to say something else. Jack watched as the stranger dropped his gaze, holding his hands up, palms out, as he backed away and left.

By then Anna and Pitch had rallied behind the Australian. Jack handed the girl off to his boss as Pitch patted his friend's shoulder.

"Well done, my friend."

Aster shook him off and stalked away. Jack looked after him, concerned.

"Don't worry, Jack. He just needs to calm down. That's one of the downsides of being a Dom, sometimes our tempers try to control us."

"But he didn't hit that guy."

"No, he didn't. Aster has more self-control than that. But it has been some time since I've seen him get that riled. He usually reserves it for the gym. It is not often that he threatens confinement. Even to his own subs."

Aster sat at the bar, his anger finally gone. He hated his temper. He'd spent years practicing tai chi to quell it. He rolled the shot glass against the table, looking up as a full one was set in front of him.

"Can I buy you a refill?" Came a voice behind him. He sighed, knitting his brows. "Not interested."

Jack climbed onto the stool next to him. "C'mon, Cottontail. Just one shot, to say thanks."

Aster offered a smile and nodded, glad to have the server's company and attention. It really is too bad he's not wearin' a collar, he thought.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Two weeks later Jack sat at the bar helping Tooth set up glasses. They still had two hours before the doors opened and he was fidgeting. He hadn't been able to get Aster off his mind. He'd been disappointed every time Pitch came in without the Australian.

"Whatcha thinkin' about, sweet-tooth?" Anna asked; methodically drying and placing glasses onto trays to stack.

"Still thinking about the Shop; it was more intense than I expected." He shrugged. Anna eyed him with a smirk.

"Are you sure it doesn't have anything to do with a tall, tan foreigner friend of mine?" She watched as her little boy's cheeks colored a dusty pink.

"So what if it does?"

"Well, then I would tell you that he's been asking about you." She sneered.

Jack glanced at her and quirked an eyebrow. "Oh yeah? What's he wanting to know?"

"Just the usual: were you single, would you be interested…" She paused and looked at Jack from the corner of her eye, "If you were into the lifestyle."

He paused, excitement momentarily waning. He'd forgotten Aster was into that. He'd never thought about getting into the subculture he worked with most nights. "What'd you tell him?" He asked.

"I told him the truth. You're single and definitely interested, but you've never done anything like that. Don't get me wrong, honey; if you want to get into this lifestyle you couldn't get a better Dom than Aster. But as nice as he is, he's still a Dom. Maybe you two could sit down and talk; maybe he could explain to you what he expects from his boys."

Jack nodded, grabbing a tray of lemons to begin cutting them up for garnishes. He offhandedly mentioned that if Aster inquired after him again, she had his permission to give out his number. Tooth just laughed at him.

That night Pitch showed up not long after the doors opened. Jack waved as he passed with an order of drinks.

"Hey, Pitch." Anna greeted as he slid into the booth opposite to her.

"Anna." He smiled.

Pitch was a people watcher, so being able to visit with a dear friend and practice his hobby was perfection in his book. He scanned the crowds, glaring slightly as his eyes rolled over the brutish man from the Shop event. Well, at least he wouldn't be any trouble anymore; Aster saw to that. He continued his watching, smiling at the bartender who was trying to fend off a group of barely legal college girls. A quiet 'Oh no' brought him back to his friend.

"What is it?" He asked. Anna nodded toward the stage. A thick, short man stood gesturing wildly with his arms. He was trying to command the attention of those around him. Most definitely a Dom, Pitch thought, but a sloppy one- established masters could command attention just by walking into a room; he and Aster had done so on numerous occasions. He could tell by the countenance of the man that he was only into the scene for the power play. This man took slaves, not subs.

"His name's Phil, but everyone calls him Hog. He's an absolute pig. I wonder if Jack knows he's here." She trailed off worriedly, glancing around for her boy. Pitch noticed a white mop of hair, and drew her attention to the bar. Anna made an apology, and hurriedly left.

Pitch watched as Anna and Jack spoke. The young man's stature changed; the boy tensed; no doubt at the mention of the oily rodent. He took out his phone and typed out a text. If Aster was so interested in that young man, he needed to step up his defense. Anna returned moments later with Jack in tow.

"Nice to see you again, Jackson." Pitch nodded as he moved to the side, letting the young man slide in to settle between himself and Tooth.

"You too." He murmured. Anna placed a gentle hand oh his arm.

"Jack's going to sit with us for a while." She stated, leaving no room for arguments.

The trio talked for a good hour. Pitch learned that Jackson had a younger sister, and that they lived together in an apartment next to the school about six blocks up. He was impressed at how intelligent Jack was. He was very well read, very polite. Jack explained why he and Anna hated Phil as much as they did. Turns out Pitch was right, he was a Dom. Hog had propositioned Jack multiple times, not taking no for an answer. He thought Jack was just playing hard to get, one time even threatening the boy for declining him. The brit fought down a snarl, he abhorred men like that. Horrible patrons aside, he found himself genuinely enjoying the conversation.

"Hey there, sweet cheeks." Came a snide, cocky voice. The Hog had arrived.

"Go away, Phil. I don't know how much clearer I can make myself: I'm. Not. Interested." Jack bit out through clenched teeth.

Phil waved away the statement, placing his forearms onto the table and leaning in. Pitch fought the urge to pinch his nose; the smell of hard boiled eggs seemed to permeate the man's very pores. "How do you know we wouldn't work? You won't even give me a chance." He purred.

"Look, Hog, he's not interested. I won't have you harassing my workers." Anna snapped at him. Her violet eyes narrowed to slits as she bared her teeth. Hog locked eyes with the angry woman with a confident smirk.

"What 'ave we here?"

Pitch let out a small breath in relief. He looked to Jack and smiled as the boy broke into a grin. Aster sauntered up behind the rodent and placed a firm hand on his shoulder, as much in greeting as in warning.

"Oh nothing serious, just trying to get a date out of this ice lolly, but he's givin' me the cold shoulder." Hog offered, shrugging off the taller man.

"You mean Jack? I doubt he'd be interested, mate."

Phil bristled and glared. "Oh yeah? Why's that?" He puffed out his chest trying, and failing, to look intimidating next to the Australian. It was a hard feat; Aster's six-one height, and kick boxer body saw to that.

"Because Aster and I were going to dinner this weekend to talk about a contract. Weren't we?" Jack surprised everyone by offering up a solution. What possessed him to blurt that out was a mystery, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. He was curious about the lifestyle the older man was into, he just added in a little white lie. He watched Aster's eyes darken from bright spring to deep forest and felt safe in the knowledge he wouldn't be rejected. He blushed as blown pupils raked over him.

"That we are, Snowflake." He offered a small smile to Jack then turned to Phil. "He's spoken for, mate."

The short man glanced at Jack, and back up to Aster. He looked to be sizing the taller Dom up but decided against making a move. He scoffed a 'til next time' to Jack and stalked off into the crowd.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Saturday found Jack seated at an upper end hotel bar, he nursed his water as he waited for Aster. He was nervous about the meeting; he'd been fidgeting since arriving. The encounter with Hog had set him on edge that night. Anna had told the bouncers to keep a keen eye open for any disturbance the greasy man might formulate, basically looking for any reason to kick him out. Pitch and Aster had kept him company. They bickered back and forth like teenagers; Jack thoroughly enjoyed it. The older man had eventually asked for his number, claiming to genuinely want to take him out. So here he sat.

Aster walked in and sat down across from him. "You're early." He said. Jack nodded and smiled.

"Yeah, sis is at a friend's for the weekend, so I figured why not?"

"Fair 'nough." The older man smiled, sipping his drink. "Tooth said ya had some questions."

Jack nervously shifted in his seat and nodded. "A few, yeah."

Aster waved his hand with a chuckle. "Ask away."

~*~*~Line~*~*~

An hour later Jack was leaned back in his chair. He stared at the older man in front of him with glazed eyes.

Aster had answered all of his questions with honesty and the in depth explanations had been very insightful. He'd be lying to himself if much of what he'd learned didn't sound arousing. The thought of Aster ordering him to get on his knees was shudder inducing.

"Any more questions, Jackie?" Aster asked as the conversation lulled.

"Not that I can think of…"

Aster offered another smile and reached into his pocket. He pulled out a small flash drive and slid it into Jack's hand. "Look into this when ya get home. It has pictures of what I use, the room I keep them in, and a copy of the contract my subs sign if they're interested."

"How many subs have turned you down?" Jack asked, looking up from the memory stick. He watched the Australian stand from his chair. He leaned to press a quick kiss to the crown of Jack's head. He felt lips smile into his hair.

"None. But I'm a picky bastard when it comes to that. I don't offer contracts to just anyone." Aster whispered. Stepping back, green eyes seemed to glow in triumph at the flush that crept up Jack's neck. "Gimme a call after ya take a look. If ya want we can talk about changes ya might want to make to the contract. I usually keep boys on for six to eight months, but the contract's got an open validity, so if ya want to give it a trial run we can put in a shorter duration. Just for ya to get a feel for it." Jack nodded and watched him leave.

Once back at home he quickly plugged the drive into his computer. It brought up an unnamed folder, which he clicked on. Inside were three subfolders. One was labeled 'Contract', the second- 'Gear', and the third- 'PlayRoom'. Curiosity thoroughly peaked; he clicked on the 'Gear' folder first.

Close to forty pictures filled his screen; most of younger men in various poses with collars, and various restraints littering their bodies. Some were blindfolded, other's had clamps on their nipples, and a few had ball gags in their mouths. Most had cuffs or nylon rope around their wrists and ankles and were bound to something. He noticed a few pictures where there was no subject, just a table lined with different toys. One had four dildos lined up by size, a ruler was placed in front of the smallest to give a comparison. The next was of three sets of what Jack knew as anal beads. He continued through the folder, taking note of everything he saw; cock rings, vibrators, etc. Thankfully none of them made him more than a little apprehensive.
Nothing he wouldn't consider trying at least once. He closed the folder and opened the next one.

In the 'PlayRoom' folder he saw a large futon mattress in the corner of a windowless room. The room itself was spotless, dark wood floors and light grey paint, except for one or two harnesses on the side walls, and one dangling from the ceiling. There was a sturdy table off to one side, fitted with leather cuffs at each corner, and a large locking cabinet on the other. A simple wooden chair sat next to the table. Jack sighed, almost expecting more from the room, but he wasn't going to complain. He would much rather wander into Aster's room than any other man's. Especially Pitch's.

The 'Contract' folder was the last. Inside were three different documents. The first was the one Aster used for his own, and the other two were examples of other contracts between Doms and Subs. The one Jack looked at first was Aster's. It was simple enough. Stating that:

I, [_/submissive], with a free mind and open heart; do request of [_/Dominant], that he accept the submission of my will unto him and take me into his care and guidance, that we may grow together in love, trust, and mutual respect. The satisfaction of his wants, desires, and whims are consistent with my desire as a submissive to be found pleasing to him. To that end, I offer him the use of my time, talents, and abilities.

Further, I ask, in sincere humility, that as my Master, he accept the keeping of my body, for the fulfillment and enhancement of our sexual, spiritual, emotional, and intellectual needs. To achieve this, he may have unfettered use of my body any time, any place, in front of anyone; to keep or give away as he will determine.

I ask that he guide in any sexual, sensual, or scene-related behavior, both together with, and separate from him, in such a way as to further my growth as a person.
In return, I agree:

* To obey his commands to the best of my ability

* To maintain honest and open communications with him

* To reveal my thoughts, feelings, and desires without hesitation or embarrassment

* To inform him of my wants and perceived needs, recognizing that he is the sole judge of whether the needs will be met, or how these shall be satisfied

* To strive toward maintenance of a positive self-image and development of realistic expectations and goals

My surrender as a submissive is done with the knowledge that nothing asked of me will demean me as a person, and in no way diminish my own responsibilities toward making use of my potential.

This I, [_/submissive] do entreat, with lucidity and the realization of what this means, both stated and implied, in the conviction that this offer will be understood in the spirit of faith, caring, esteem, and devotion in which it is given.

Should either of us find that our aspirations are not being well served by this agreement, find this commitment too burdensome, or for any other reason wish to cancel, either may do so by verbal notification to the other, in keeping with the consensual nature of the agreement.

We both understand that cancellation means a cessation of the control stated and implied within this agreement, not a termination of our relationship as friends and lovers. Upon cancellation, each of us agree to offer the other their reasons and assess our new needs and situation openly and lovingly.

This agreement shall serve as the basis for an extension of our relationship, committed to the spirit of loving and consensual Dominance and submission with the intention of furthering self-awareness and exploration, promoting health and happiness, and improving both our lives.

This contract has a life of _ (days/weeks/months/years). At its expiration a new contract may be created and signed.

I offer my consent of submission to [_/Dominant], under the terms stated above on this the _ day of _ in the year _.

(Signature of submissive)

I offer my acceptance of submission by (_/submissive), under the terms stated above on the _ day of _ in the year _.

(Signature of Dominant)

Jack huffed out a breath, he sat with his knees pulled up to his chin and stared wide eyed at his computer. He was just a kid trying to keep his stable little life afloat. Never had he thought about seriously considering entering into the lifestyle he worked alongside, but here he was- seriously considering signing this binding document. Effectively signing away his sexual freedom to a man he barely knew. Granted, the man was gorgeous, and they got along well; but still barely knew one another. He suddenly felt nervous. If he did this, would he have to make any big changes to his life? What if Aster ordered him to do something that would jeopardize his job? God, what if his sister found out? At least she was going to be off at the university in the next few months after she graduated.

Jack fumbled for his phone. It had beeped while he explored the flash drive. On his screen 'New Message' blinked at him. It was from Aster, the text was simple: If you have any question or concerns, please let me know. Well, he thought, might as well get used to sharing stuff with him if I'm gonna do this. He typed a reply, including everything he was nervous about; the reply was almost instant- Aster called.

"Do ya really think I'd do somethin' to mess up ya life? Not on yer nelly." He chuckled. Hearing him made Jack instantly feel better.

"I would hope not, but I needed to know."

"Look, Jackie. I'm not goin' to push ya out of yer comfort zone. If yer ever uncomfortable with somethin' we do, just tell me and we'll stop."

"I know that. You made it clear Saturday." Jack mumbled. He heard Aster sigh on the other end of the call. There was a brief silence before he started speaking.

"I'm not gonna lie, I have some kinks in my closet that some people would frown on. But why I do what I do isn't to control someone. I don't want a slave. What I… enjoy most about havin' a sub… is the exchange of trust that happens. In all honesty, Jack, Dom's don't hold the real power in a relationship like this, the subs do. They are the ones who go into this willingly; they choose to follow the orders that are placed on them. The sub places their complete trust in their Dom to keep them safe- mentally, and physically. It's a humbling experience."

Jack hung on every word as Aster spoke. He did understand where the Australian was coming from, but one thing nagged at him. "What about having to be trained? I've read that subs need to be trained…"

"Some do, yes." Aster said slowly. "Training isn't the best word to use, but it's good enough I guess; though I would use 'acclimating'. Training a sub is really just getting' them to be comfortable trusting their master. For example: If you decide to contract with me, ya aren't goin' to just jump when I tell ya to. Ya aren't goin' to let me bind ya up and take ya without knowin' you'd be safe. We'd have to build up to that. You'll have to trust me to take care of ya, to keep ya safe; and in turn I'll have to trust ya to do what I say; if you do good there'll be rewards, and if ya don't there will be punishments." He voice was low as he finished, obviously not liking to have to bring up the punishments.

"What would you do if I did mess up?" Jack's voice was small.

"It would depend on what ya did, honestly. If ya just won't listen, you'll be spanked. Hard. I'd bend ya over a table and make ya count them 'til I was satisfied you'd learned yer lesson. If you did somethin' severe… I've always thought orgasm denial was good way to prove a point."

Jack was silent as he listened. Aster talked about all this like it was normal. Well, he guessed, this was normal to him. He ran a hand over his face as he took a deep breath.

"Think on this for a tic. I don't want you to sign onto somethin' like this without havin' all the answers ya need. I'll stop by the club sometime next week, when I get back. Talk to Tooth, she'll be more than happy to help ya."

"'kay. Have a good night." Jack paused. "Thanks. For answering my questions. I really appreciate it."

Aster chuckled, a deep throaty sound that made Jack blush. "Anytime, Snowflake."

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Looking at the twitchy, nervous boy in front of her, Tooth smiled fondly. It was endearing to watch the usually so confident Jackson Overland-Frost become so demure. The poor boy was second guessing everything he and Aster had talked about. But, he admitted, he really did like the Australian; they enjoyed each other's company, and could easily talk for hours.

"Jack, you're thinking too much into this." Tooth tried to reason.

"But- " Her server started.

"No buts. Now, you listen here, Jackson." She playfully scolded him, placing soft hands on his shoulders. "Aster said you could choose how long you want this to be. He's already said that he wouldn't do anything you're uncomfortable with; he's going to keep his word, he wouldn't hurt you."

"I know he wouldn't." Jack murmured, "But I'm still worried. What if we start this and then can't have a normal relationship?"

Anna barked a loud laugh. As she went about flipping through bills, she explained that Aster had never pursued any romantic relationships with his boys. That being said though; the fact that he'd come to her, all worried and nervous, about messing up the romance part of it with Jack was something in itself. And she told him as much. That seemed to marginally lift Jack's outlook. His smile returned, as did is mindless chatter as they continued with the pre-opening checklist.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

The week passed excruciatingly slowly for Jack. He kept himself busy with work, got his sister moved into her new campus apartment, and spent his nights talking to Aster. The older man was incredibly interesting; Jack learned that the Australian used to be on a kick boxing team, before moving to the states, and every year he held an Easter benefit at a park a few blocks from his flat. Aster told him that Sandy, Anna and North helped.

"If you do this every year with my boss, why haven't I met you before?" Jack asked one night; he absently stirred his pot of mac and cheese. He smiled at the deep answering laugh, made slightly scratchy over the phone.

"You've only worked for Tooth for, what, two years? This Easter is still a few months away, but we ended up havin' to cancel last year's because of a freak blizzard. Bastard came outta nowhere."

Jack giggled in delight. "That thing was a blast! Did you read about the snowball fight that day? It was epic! Over a hundred people played. It was the best day of my life, to date!" Jack exclaimed.

Aster talked on about how much he disliked the snow. Jack figured he'd be more inclined to warmer weather due to his tropical upbringing. He asked about Aster's job and what it entailed, learning that he had quite a bit of money invested in bonds that had paid out quite nicely, and the conferences he and Kozmotis did paid well too. He felt comfortable with Aster, even on the phone, and was seriously considering signing his contract. When he brought it up to Aster, the man did a good job covering his excitement.

"You've really been thinkin' about it?" He asked, smile evident in his voice.

"Yeah. I mean, we can do a trial run, right? Nothing too long or binding at first, right?" Jack asked. Though he was extremely interested in Aster, some of what he'd seen in the photos was intimidating.

" 'course, Jack. I'd never push ya to do somethin' that'd make ya uncomfortable." Aster told him gently, there was a pause before he continued. "If ya wanted to, we could have one night as vanilla or kinky as ya wanted. Ya wouldn't be mah sub, just a partner for the evenin'. I could bring out a few beginners toys and we could try them out, let ya get a feel for 'em. If ya like it then we could talk about a contract in the mornin', and if ya don't then maybe we could talk about getting' to know each other a little better."

Jack felt the smile grow on his face before the other man even finished his last sentence. "Like going on a date?" He asked excitedly, chuckling more at the deep laugh he received.

"Yeah," Aster agreed, "Like a date."

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Two weeks to the day of their conversation found Aster standing in front of Jack's apartment door. He'd be lying if he said he wasn't excited. At first it was just wanting to get Jack into bed and into a contract; oh the fantasies he'd come up with for that boy drove him wild. It had been a long time since he'd wanted someone as bad as he wanted Jack. But then he began to get to know the boy. Jack was sweet, and funny. He was a hard worker and honest to a fault, which made Aster rethink how he would go about wooing the boy. He'd had one night stands, sure, but none were ever more than that. He was beginning to want more than a contract with Jack. He wanted the boy as a whole, body, mind and heart.

Jack opened the door and offered the older man a shy smile, completely betraying the nervous butterflies in his stomach. He'd tried to reason with his head all day- this was just dinner. With a guaranteed night of, quite possibly, the hottest sex he'd had up to this time in his life. He'd been mentally preparing himself for what might await him after dinner. He'd gone through and highlighted passages in multiple books, not to mention revisiting all the pictures the older man had sent to him. Jack had been beet red all morning, but he felt ready. At least he hoped he was.

The restaurant was a fancy affair, taking place at one of the hottest Asian fusion places in the city. Aster had called the night of their conversation and made reservations. The atmosphere was dim, and surprisingly quiet as they were led to their table; a small, round two seater with a crisp white cloth and matching napkins. It was nestled in the back of the large seating area, tucked into a corner.

Aster held Jack's chair out for him as he sat making the younger man blush before taking his own seat across from him. The waiter took their drink orders, filling two glass goblets with ice water before his departure.

"So, anything here good?" Jack asked, opening his menu and scanning over the contents. There were so many fancy sounding dishes that he was at a loss. Not to mention, out of all the descriptions, none of the meals had any prices next to them. The thought of how much the steak might cost made his stomach roll. He remembered that Aster had said the evening was on him, since it was a date, but Jack was already feeling guilty about how much the man was about to spend.

Aster smiled gently at him, seemingly picking up on his unease. "Everything here is amazin', but we aren't havin' supper here." Jack raised a brow in confusion. What were they doing here then? He voiced his question and Aster answered. "This is to help ya relax. Yer wound tighter than rubber band, Jackie. Relax. Nothin' that happens tonight will happen without yer complete consent." Aster told him, reaching his larger hand across the table to take Jack's smaller one. The younger man looked down at their joined hands; his was so pale compared to Aster's, and quite a bit smaller to boot.

"What do you see in me?" He asked, looking up into surprised green eyes.

Aster fixed a curiously calculating gaze at him as he thought. Jack was glad the other seemed to take his question seriously. Finally the Australian spoke, leaning forward onto the table. "I see… a devilishly handsome young man, who has the potential to become something great. I'm not gonna lie, Jack, I want ya as a sub, and I think you have great potential to be a great one; one that Doms would fight over, if ya found one that you felt completely at ease with. But, at the same time, yer smart. If ya chose to go back to school, I have no doubt ya could do somethin' amazin'."

Jack sat, stunned at the sincerity of the answer. He felt the warmth of a blush rise from his clavicle to the tips of his ears. Aster chuckled as the waiter returned and pointed to something on the menu, ordering them both drinks- a tea for himself and for Jack, a sugary, carbonated something.

"You blush beautifully." Aster remarked once the waiter left, sipping his water and smiling around the glass.

Jack, regardless of how adamantly he'd deny it later, giggled into his hand like a school girl. He filed the sound of Aster's laugh away in his memory so he'd never forget just as the waiter returned with the drinks and the appetizer his date had ordered. It was a platter filled with different items.

The two talked and laughed; learning and discovering little things that made them each the person they were today. Jack learned that Aster was the second oldest of six, and he'd moved to America by himself to go to school; he'd majored in the arts with a minor in psychology. Aster, in turn, learned that Jack worked full time for Tooth to put his sister through the private school she was living at, and that he was currently studying to become a bartender. "They get way better tips!" He complained.

The appetizers were quickly devoured, Jack complimenting everything he tried, and soon after the completion of the food, the check came. Aster swiped it up, amused at how determined Jack was at trying to see the price. He just smiled and tucked his bank card into the slot in the bill.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

The two sat quietly in the cab of Aster's sedan, Jack smiling as he watched the scenery. He smiled because Aster had taken his hand, and was currently rubbing little circles across his knuckles as he drove. The butterflies had returned with a vengeance as they got closer to the Australian's home. Jack was a bundle of nervous excitement… He knew what was going to happen when they reached the house. He knew he was going to get laid, and he was even relatively sure it was going to be the best sex he'd be able to remember. His mind began supplying him with all sorts of sordid ideas: Aster bending him over and spanking him; being tied to the headboard and blindfolded; being gagged and slowly prepared with a vibrating toy… all the while listening to the filthy whispers of his soon-to-be lover. Jack cursed and tried to discreetly hide his hard-on.

He never noticed Aster's confident smirk.

Not ten minutes later the couple arrived. The house was not what Jack was expecting. It seemed so normal, and even cozy. The updated cottage was a light blue and lush bushes lined the front of the house. He followed the older man, stepping through the door and marveling at the inside. Jack barely turned to compliment the room before Aster had him by the hair, crushing his mouth to the younger man's.

Jack groaned into the kiss, arms coming up to desperately grip Aster's biceps. He was backed against the door, yelping a bit as his head connected with the wood, giving the Australian the opening he'd been wanting. Aster plunged his tongue into Jack's mouth, lapping at the slick muscle with his own. His hands held tight to the young man's white hair, reveling in the tiny noises it pulled from him. Strong, tan hands roamed over Jack; along his sides, across his chest, over his ass. It was bliss. A hard squeeze to his rear surprised another moan from him and he tightly wrapped his arms around the Australian's neck, rising to the balls of his feet to push back against Aster's hard chest.

The second hand joined the first, both working together to lift Jack into the air so he could wrap his legs around Aster's waist. The older man began his careful maneuvering to the bedroom, which had Jack's stomach turning with anticipation and cock straining against his jeans.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Jack writhed under Aster. Their nakedness no longer awkward they ground against each other. Jack panted and moaned and grunted as he clung to his lover, perfectly content to let Aster run the show. The man was thrusting his hips, panting filthy things into Jack's ear.

"Ya feel so good, Jack. Yer so wet fer me." Aster growled as Jack raked his blunt nails down his back. "Tell me what ya want me to do to ya. Wanna hear ya say it."

Jack couldn't voice his thoughts, the haze of pleasure too thick to form a coherent sentence; thankfully he didn't have to worry- Aster continued.

"Wanna see ya tied- arms and legs to my bed. I'd blindfold ya… love ta see ya in a cock ring. So hard and leakin' fer me. Wanna hear ya beg me."

Suddenly Aster stopped, making Jack whine as he disentangled himself from his younger lover. He sat back on his knees and braced his hand on them. He fixed Jack with an apprehensive, yet calculating look. It made heat stir in Jack's belly.

"What do ya want?" Aster asked, his voice firm like his eyes.

Jack, panting, stared up at the older man. That sounded like an order. "I… I, uh…I want you to touch me.." He murmured shyly. Aster just smiled gently and wrapped a large, warm hand around the base of his cock making him hiss. The large, warm hand slowly stroked him, going up to palm his head and then back down. The rhythm stayed at that pace, nearly driving Jack mad from anticipation. He tried bucking his hips but Aster held them down with his free hand.

"None of that, now. If you want somethin', Jackie, ya need to tell me."

Jack flung his head to the side with a groan. He wanted so much more than what was currently happening. So many thoughts were running through his mind. He wondered if he would like being tied up, if he would like being punished…

"Aster…" Jack sighed as the older man moved to his neck. Aster nipped and sucked at his pale skin making goose bumps rise over his arms as he brought them up to tangle his fingers into his soon-to-be lover's hair. He gasped at particularly sharp nip and knew Aster was testing him. Well… he enjoyed it more than he thought, much more. "Harder." Jack whispered, and then outright moaned as Aster bit down on the side of his neck. Those straight, white, perfect teeth dug into the flesh of his neck as Jack squeezed his eyes shut. The mixture of the two feelings, pleasurable pain or painful pleasure, he couldn't decide, was euphoric.

Aster licked and kissed the blossoming mark, humming against his young partner's neck. He was pleased that his little experiment brought forth the results he'd hoped for; he had always been a biter, the primal feeling the action brought forth in him made him shiver. He let his hands slide down, over Jack's ribs and to his hips; pressing more firmly against the smaller body as Jack hiked a slender leg up onto his hip.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Aster knelt between trembling thighs as he stared at Jack. The young man's skin was flushed and a sheen of sweat glistened in the limited light and darkening marks littered his ale neck and upper chest. The lone bruise darkening Jack's hip was his personal favorite… the keening whine that the boy let out was euphoric. He'd agreed, albeit hesitantly, to let Aster tie his hands- on the promise that Jack keep them above his head. Glazed blue eyes were locked on his as Aster kissed and nipped from one of Jack's knees, to his inner thigh, stopping to ghost his hot breath over the younger man's straining erection. Jack shuddered and a pearly drop of precome beaded at his tip.

"Aster, please." Jack begged, arching his hips up as far as he could, practically begging for him.

"Keep yer hands above yer head fer me, Jack." Aster said, slowly taking the head of Jack's erection into his mouth. The salty sweet essence of the young man coated his tongue and brought a sigh from his nose as he lowered his head to take more, all the while never once looking away from Jack's face. The glacial blue eyes were glassy and glazed over with lust and his cheeks and chest glowed with arousal. Aster felt himself twitch as Jack took his bottom lip between his teeth, biting back a moan.

"None of that, now. I want to hear ya." Aster growled before taking all of the younger man's length into his mouth again. He smirked around Jack's girth at the strangled scream that filled his room. Jack convulsed- curling around Aster's head as he bobbed up about down. Pale hands fisted into his hair gripped tight.

Jack was in complete bliss, and then it stopped. He opened his eyes and shot a confused glare to the dom. "What-"

"Be quiet." Aster said, tone firm and words curt. The older man had drawn himself up onto his knees and fixed Jack with a disapproving look. "What did I tell ya?"

Jack swallowed thickly, throat dry from all of his vocalization. What did Aster tell him to do? He thought, fighting through the cloudy haze of arousal and excitement. Realization hit almost instantly.

His hands. Aster had told him to keep his hands above his head. And he didn't.

"Well?" Aster asked impatiently.

"I- I didn't keep my hands above my head, like you told me to." He answered quietly. Anxiety came creeping up in the back of his mind and while part of him wanted to know how deep the older man was steeped in this lifestyle, another part of him was nervous to see what Aster would do.

"That's right." He agreed lowly, then paused. His expression became fluid for a moment, switching between annoyance to excitement to nervousness and back again. Finally Aster breathed deep and focused on Jack. "Do you want to try out some light play, or would ya like to continue on like this?"

Jack swallowed again, adam's apple bobbing. This is what he wanted, right? He'd been curious to know what kind of punishments the older man would dole out. "Would we need a safe word?"

"No. Not for this and not outside the playroom. If it's somethin' yer willin' to try but find out ya don't like it just say stop and I'll stop."

Some of Jack's nerves eased at the sincerity of Aster's statement. He didn't believe Aster would hurt him, at least not intentionally. He could, though, no doubt about it. Aster was strong, which only added to his intimidating height and posture. But he'd been nothing but patient and gentle with him thus far.

"I'd like to try… if that's okay."

Aster had to close his eyes. This boy was going to be the death of him, he was sure of it now. Jack's willingness and open-mindedness was invigorating for someone so new to the lifestyle. For all intents and purposes, Jack was a virgin to this. He'd never done anything like this before, or so he'd told Aster. The way Jack had shyly agreed to try a bit of light play, all lowered eyes and quiet speech, had Aster swelling with pride for the boy. The sudden need to strap the boy down and blind fold him was almost painful, but he didn't think Jack would be at all comfortable with being tied to the wall blindfolded, with nipple clamps and gagged. Aster shuddered at the image his mind provided him. For now though, he'd make do with some spanking. He nodded.

"On yer hands and knees, then."

He smiled as Jack instantly obeyed, rolling from his back to his stomach and raising himself up. Aster maneuvered him how he wanted; shoulders to the bed, back arched, legs spread wide with his ass in the air. Aster sat on his knees beside him, running his hands over his back and thighs and ass. It was soothing to the point of drowsiness until Aster spoke again.

"You'll count until I tell ya to stop, understand?"

Jack nodded mutely, then gasped at the sharp tug to his hair.

"What do ya say, boy?"

"Yes, sir!" He rushed, "Sorry, sir."

Aster nodded and took a steadying breath.

The first slap was soft, almost exploratory. Jack barely flinched and was left wanting more. He figured Aster would go gentle with him, not wanting to scare him or turn him off the idea of punishments.

"It's okay. I can take harder than that. Treat me like you would your sub in this situation." Jack voiced, words slightly muffled by his position. He'd hoped to sound reassuring, to let Aster know he wasn't scared; nervous, yes, but not frightened. His tone seemed to do the trick, for the next slap stung, something fierce!

Jack cried out a 'Two!' and screwed his eyes shut. The burning handprint he could feel on his buttock felt like fire. He huffed out a harsh breath as Aster brought his hand down for number three, barely giving him a reprieve to compose himself. The burning intensified and Jack couldn't help trying to wrench away. Aster silently stopped him with a firm grip to the back of his neck, forcefully pushing him down into the mattress. Number four was a little harder, and on the other cheek. Fire rushed through Jack's skin, leaving unpleasant warmth to blossom. The pinpricks of pain raced along his nerves as he gasped out 'Five!' His thighs trembled as he clenched his jaw. Jack swore his backside glowed a vibrant pink, it had to be.

Aster smiled down at the boy; he was beaming with how well Jack had taken his spanking. The boy's cheeks were bright red, but despite the sting his cock was dripping onto his sheets. Aster brought his hand up and gently began to rub and massage the pain away. He kneaded one globe and then the other, leaning down to kiss and lick at each one. Aster shifted to crouch behind Jack as he continued is menstruations. Jack hummed in appreciation, tension leaving his muscles as he melted into the older man's touch. Aster was entranced by him; the boy was beautiful, and clearly was enjoying himself.

Bending down, he spread the boy's cheeks and swiped his tongue from the base of Jack's member up to his puckered pink hole. Jack's surprised yelp turned to deep moan as Aster teased with his tongue; slipping it in just past the ring of muscle and back out before plunging the slippery appendage all the way in. Jack had never felt anything like this before. He wasn't a virgin, his previous lover's only numbering four, but none of them had ever done this to him. He keened as Aster worked him open, pushing his hips back needing to feel more.

The younger man was rocking back against the Australian when Aster pulled back. Having already lubed up his fingers, Aster slid the first digit in- all the way up to the hilt. He kissed and nipped at the still pink cheeks of his young lover as the boy whined and ground his face into the bedding.

Aster was in heaven. This was the most fun he'd had in the past decade, and it only promised to be even more so as the night progressed. He glanced at the small black bag he'd hidden under his comforter and wondered if Jack would be open to it. He worked his finger in and out a handful of times more before pausing and quietly calling out to Jack.

"Jackie." He cooed, getting only a breathy 'yeah' in response. "I have a few things here if ya wanted to try somethin' a little different. Would ya be interested?"

Jack looked back over his shoulder, and pushed himself up off the bed to turn and face his lover. "What did you have in mind?" He asked, a slight pause gave away his nerves; but, Aster noted, he still looked curiously at him. Blue eyes followed him as he flipped back a corner of his comforter and slid the innocuous black bag out from under one of his pillows.

Inside laid three simple toys. One beginner's anal plug, one slender, vibrating dildo, and double latex cock ring.

Jack eyed the toys, flicking back and forth between the three. Aster held them out for him to take a closer look at, which he was grateful for.

The first was the vibrator. It was red in color, and was about as wide as one of those giant novelty pencils you see as fair prizes. The second item was the plug; it was black tapered to a blunt point while the bottom half flared generously before forming the handle. Idly, he wondered what it could be used for other than preparation. Finally he picked up the rings; they were smooth circles of firm rubber, connected together at the top.

The three wasn't anything he hadn't seen before, he thought, remembering his workplace, but they were nothing he'd ever tried before. Aster was looking at him apprehensively and, Jack noted, trying to hide the hopeful glint in his eyes. Well, he thought, they certainly don't look too unpleasant. Jack took up the plug again and handed it to his lover.

"What kind of fun can we have with this?" Jack asked; shy smile turning to a salacious smirk as he watched Aster's pupils blow wide.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Aster glanced over Jack a final time, just to make sure the boy was comfortable. On his bed, Jack was in much the same position as before: shoulders to the bed and ass in the air. Jack's newly bound hands stretched out in front of him. Aster had continued to prepare him, only to gently work in the anal plug after getting Jack's consent. He'd asked the boy what he wanted, and nearly moaned at his answer.

Jack wanted to be spanked again.

On the outside Aster was composed, just like any dom would be, but on the inside he was as giddy as a child who was tall enough to finally ride their first roller coaster. He leaned over Jack, pressing his chest to the boy's back, giving a light grind of his hips against Jack's ass.

"Remember to count, Jackie. How many do ya think ya can take this time?" Aster whispered huskily into a pale ear; the boy shuddered under him as he added a teasing lick to the shell.

"Um, let's start with five. Like last time." He breathed. Anticipation bubbled through his chest as Aster maneuvered to kneel on the bed at his side. One of his hands came to rest on the back of his neck, just like the first time.

"One!" Jack hissed, fire raced back through his ass and down his leg at the first smack, though it wasn't the only thing he felt. This time Aster had struck him directly over the plug, making it thrust slightly deeper into him. It felt amazing.

The second and third spanks were much the same, leaving him stinging and gasping and moaning. He loved this, so much so it was disconcerting. Jack pushed his hips out, bowing his back as much as could, but Aster wasn't getting the hint. And judging by the chuckle he let out, the bastard was doing it on purpose.

"What's wrong, Snowflake? Need somethin'?"

Jack groaned, why did he always want him to voice it? It was embarrassing.

"Jack, I need to hear ya say it." Aster told him firmly, bringing his hand down slightly harder than the first three times; Jack moaned out the number as the plug rubbed against his inner walls.

"Harder, Aster. Hit me harder."

The Dom sucked in a breath. Damn, this boy was going to be the death of him. He was doing so good, and even asking for more. Aster's cock was straining, wanting nothing more than to be balls deep in that rosy red ass in front of him. But tonight was all about Jack. He could get off later. Aster raised his hand once more, bringing it down against Jack's cheek with a resounding crack making the boy cry out the last number as he came all over the comforter.

~*~*~Line~*~*~

Jack woke on his stomach, snuggling into a plush pillow, and felt lethargic and drained and wonderful. His mind supplied his location, as he was not in his own bed, remembering the previous night's activities. Smiling, he stretched, instantly wincing and grunting at the pain that shot through the backs of his thighs, ass and lower back. He willed himself up onto his knees and carefully crawled out from under the covers and gingerly hobbled to the bathroom.

After filching the robe he found, Jack followed his nose to the kitchen. There, Aster stood over the stove stirring something in a pan. Jack smelled eggs and bacon and sausage.

"Morning." He croaked.

"Mornin', Snowflake. I hope ya like breakfast burritos."

On cue, Jack's stomach rumbled making the Australian chuckle as he poured the contents of the pan into a bowl before walking over to his house guest. Aster took Jack's hand and placed a kiss to his temple before leading him to a chair at the table. He'd even added a pillow to the seat.

"Figured ya might be a tic sore." He replied, not at all sheepishly, at Jack's raised eyebrow. "Have a seat, mate, and I'll bring brekkies."

They ate in silence, Jack more awkwardly than Aster. Was this normal? Was he supposed to ask for permission? He wanted to know what the older man was thinking, so focused on trying to figure it out he jumped at the addition of a glass being place in front of him.

"Just juice, Jack." Aster snickered.

"Thank you." He replied, then as an afterthought, "Sir."

Aster took his seat and leveled his green eyes to Jack's blue. "Ya don't have to call me that-"

"But I will if I sign the contract." He interrupted, slightly nervous.

"No, Jack. I don't make my boys call me that all the time. In the playroom, yes. And if ya accompany me to any functions, yes. But not like this." Aster told him sternly.

Jack lowered his gaze, playing with the edge of his tortilla. "Oh. Sorry."

"No need to apologize, Jackie." He smiled, taking Jack's hand and rubbing circles across his knuckles again, just like on the ride over. "Did ya have fun last night?" He smiled again.

Jack nodded shyly, smirking a bit as a soft blush rose across his nose. "It was… intense. In a really good way." He said looking up to meet Aster's gaze. "I think it was the hardest I've ever come before, and I didn't think I'd ever be into spanking… but it was amazing."

"I'm glad you enjoyed it." Aster smirked, confidence clearly apparent.

Jack hummed in agreement before furrowing his brows and smirking. "If I enjoy getting spanked how can you use that against me as a punishment?"