The story of writing backwards (Royal Treatment)

So, many of you know that probably my most “iconic” story — and certainly the one that has been read by the most people over the past 18 years — is “Telepaths Don’t Need Safewords .”
One of the unusual things about the story and the characters of Arshan (the dom) and Mriah (the sub), is that the entire thing, title, characters, and backstory all leapt into my head more or less simultaneously. The characters sprang forth as fully realized people. Sometimes it takes me a while to learn the quirks of my characters, but not that time. The story of “Telepaths” takes place after they’ve already been in a relationship for at least ten years.
Most writers who get taken by storm by a character (or two) go on to write sequels about them.
In my case, I’ve done it backwards. I keep writing prequels.
The story of “Telepaths” actually tells maddeningly little about the background of the main characters. There’s passing mention of the planet they are on, but you don’t find out how the two central characters originally met, or how they evolved the dynamic they have in which the female character is not really “submissive” but is his slave and property in some very true sense, quite different from the role playing of the other people at the BDSM party they attend. How they got that way and why she rejects the advances of the “fake” doms she doesn’t respect is never explained.
I wrote a story a year or two later that has never been published, mostly because it didn’t have any smut in it, about the two of them returning to Mriah’s home for their first visit since he had taken her away from there years before. That story ended up in a drawer, but during the course of writing it, enough flashbacks were incorporated that I eventually clued in to the fact that the flashbacks, which told the story of how they met, made a story of its own.
So I eventually got off my duff (some ten years later), and wrote the story “Master Mind.” I wrote it from Arshan’s point of view (“Telepaths” is from Mriah’s), and finally answered the question of how they met and how their relationship dynamic began. That story is now available in the Edge Plays ebook.
What’s sort of funny is the story “Master Mind” opens with:
“I arrived on the island as summer faded and the days shrank,with scars on my back and my mind still reeling from what I had just been through. But this is not the story of the Emperor and his daughter and all the things that happened to me before. This is the story of what happened to me on the island of Lhysa.”
So it’s quite obvious there’s another tale in the offing, another step backward in time to what happened with the Emperor’s daughter and how he got the scars.
THAT story is finally available today in the new novella, entitled “ROYAL TREATMENT” which Torquere Press just published.
As the blurb on the Torquere site says:
“Arshan is a young noble on a world where dominance and submission are a way of life. In his travels he has taken full advantage of the carnal pleasures on offer, sowing wild oats across several planets and learning the joys of bondage and discipline from both sides of the whip in preparation for someday becoming a full-time master. He is summoned home, though, to join a group of candidates being convened so that the crown princess may choose a consort and a slave.
Arshan is not destined for slavery, not even at the feet of the future queen, and finds himself trapped in a world of castle intrigue and sexual competition for dominance. He is fresh meat, and everyone wants a piece of him. Can he find a way to survive without surrendering, to submit without being collared for life? ”
The Torquere page for the book features an enticing excerpt and they sell in several common ebook formats.

BDSM, bisexuality, power games, dubious consent, erotic jeopardy, knife play, D/s, explicit sex.
P. S. Anyone interested in reviewing Royal Treatment (and/or the oh-so-recently released Edge Plays and the new Telepaths Don’t Need Safewords ebook) please let me know. I have PDFs I can send.


  1. Hi, Cecilia,
    I’d love to review these stories, though I don’t have an official venue to publish said reviews. I write a kinky blog, though, that has a fair number of readers, if you’d be interested in getting the word out to those folks.
    (We know each other sort of tangentially in real life, but you know me by a different name; I’m a friend of Vinnie Tesla’s.)

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