The line between friend and sexual partner became blurred, and yet both were able to coexist in my mind. When I saw the person I fisted outside of our sex parties, I didn’t immediately reminisce about my hand having been in their vagina.
For the fourth of July, we read tarot around a fire and messed around in a tent. I strapped it on and fucked Amory Jane as she held a vibe to her clit. As I thrusted, enjoying the view of her body beneath mine, a voice from behind me inquired, “can I spank you?”
It was a close friend, and my “yes” was instantaneous. Their hand made contact with a confident smack — the slap of a pro. It was a new thrill, fucking someone while my ass tingled. I wondered why I hadn’t experienced it yet. Probably because I needed someone to lend a hand. But then again, isn’t that what friends are for?
We treated each other with tenderness, creating a sacred space in which vulnerability was treasured.
We always started with an opening circle: names, pronouns, wishes for the night. Some people dreamed of impact play, grinding, biting of thighs, pulling of hair, kissing of necks, or just a gentle, extended hug. It was not uncommon to hear someone say, “I’m going through a rough time right now. I’m not feeling up for much, but if anyone wants to give me a massage or compliments, I would love that.”
The sense that here, you can ask for what you truly want. You can be who you are. Most of all: you are safe.
We were falling in love with each other, falling in love with the ease of fucking our friends. There was an inherent trust, an understanding that saying “no” was as vital as saying “yes.” We could enjoy the exact type of sex we wanted at the time, and nobody would expect it of us in the future. Every night was a blank slate.
That’s how I found myself on a bed with Stella. She was dominating me, tossing me around, squeezing my skin in the most perfect places. I didn’t know I needed any of it until she gave it to me, and I surrendered to her without a thought.
Stella fingered me with the measured intensity of an experienced sex educator. Whenever I moaned or whimpered, she looked into my eyes and raised her voice an octave: “yeah?” She sounded pleased with herself — as she should’ve been. She was turning me into jelly.
It was the first time I ever used a safeword, instinctively crying “mercy” when she pressed her fingers into a tender spot on the bottom of my foot.
Near the end of the night, we fulfilled one of Rion’s desires: to try an array of dildos in order to decide which one to buy. Five of us grabbed harnesses, threaded various dildos through the O-rings, and laid down in a row, skin to skin, cocks erect, like a tasting flight of dicks.
As we caressed each others’ inner thighs, Rion mounted us in succession, verbally describing the sensations as they went. I watched them ride, rocking their hips, their long hair draping over their shoulders like a waterfall. Some folks were new to wearing strap-ons, so this was a learning experience for them. And it was a bonding moment for all of us.
It should’ve been surreal, but by this point, it really wasn’t.
At first we called them fisting parties. That was the original inspiration: to cultivate a safe space for curious fisting virgins to be paired with skillful tops who could slowly and properly ease them into the intensity of the fist. Some of us saw it as an educational experience, a mixture of titillating and informative. Others just wanted to get off.
But the framing evolved. It was obvious the parties were no longer centered around fisting, yet we weren’t about to stop throwing them. This little experiment had blossomed into so much more.
One day in the summer, the core group held a meeting. My partner saw it on my calendar and asked quizzically, “a meeting meeting?” Yes, I clarified. No hands inside of people this time.
We gathered in Rachel’s backyard, nine of us. Someone was hungover and passed saltines around as we drank gin and lemonade. Stella took notes on her laptop.
We defined our values and discussed our desires for future orgies: vetting people before inviting them, setting up cruising threads beforehand, and being cognizant of party size. We didn’t want to lose the intimacy of small parties or end up inviting a guest who didn’t respect our parameters.
So we wrote a mission statement.
The Coven is a radical group of babes who have forged a bond through friendship and sex. We believe in the power of holding space for others, supporting and celebrating each other in both sex and life, and practicing direct communication and problem-solving. Our get-togethers focus on relishing in sensual energy, eating delicious snacks, and usually, feminist fucking. We work to prioritize negotiation and consent, as well as cultivate a safe space for both sexual exploration as well as non-sexual support and kindness.
It felt exciting to finally define it. It felt like community. We’d been brought together by a common interest, and now we shared a history. Here we were, collaborating on our vision, forging friendships that most of society would never be able to comprehend. We had created a queer universe in which the bullshit norms of our culture were discarded, leaving only our desires. Leaving us freedom.
It was in a Google Doc, and therefore it was official: we were the Coven.
One play party was held way up in the boonies, off the same highway I used to take to Girl Scout camp. The house was massive, and the entire lower level served as a dungeon.
The owners gave us few rules: no wax on the carpet, and keep the needle play in the laundry room so as not to alarm anyone with the sight of blood. There was a gynecological table set up in there, for anyone who was interested.
The highlight of my night was when an experienced rope top, Hannah, offered to tie me up and suspend me — an offer I could not refuse. As people kissed and fucked around us, she threaded the rope across my skin, criss-crossing and tying, creating a sort of rope hammock around my waist so I could be suspended on my back. I relished being taken care of in this way. She tied my thighs together, then connected the rope to my shins, binding them as well.
When she lifted me up off the floor, my head and arms fell back as the rope tightened and pressed into my skin. It felt electric, but intense. My safeword exited my mouth quickly, much quicker than I’d hoped, and she gently lowered me back down.
As the clock struck midnight, we realized it was now Summer’s birthday. Accordingly, the room sung happy birthday to her while Amory Jane slapped her ass in time with the song’s rhythm.
I spent the night in a tent with a leak in it, restless, water dripping on me.
In the morning, the house was warm, smelled sweet, and someone was playing the piano in the living room. The dungeon was empty of people but exactly as we left it — puppy pads, sealed medical gloves, and sex toys strewn about. Nobody had touched my Magic Wand Rechargeable, perched quietly on a table in the corner.
I went straight for the coffee machine, desperately tired. While others chatted and lounged on the living room rug, I slowly realized a few people were making out and groping each other on a chair. I knew I hadn’t slept well because my first thought was, it’s too early for boobs.
Amory Jane was roaming around the room, holding a microphone up to people as they fucked. She was recording the evening for her podcast, bringing listeners into the action — literally. By now we were pros at this, unbothered by the concept of our moans and slaps being committed to tape.
“My first and foremost task tonight will be recording this epic moment in femme history,” Amory Jane explained during the opening circle. “But I’m also fine with recording that while holding somebody down, or punching someone or cracking their knuckles.”
Listen to the recording:
The sex commenced quickly after spin the lube bottle, as if we all agreed to get down to business. When Stella started fingering Rosie, I crawled over to join Rosie asked me to slap their boobs and play with their nipples, imploring several times, “harder. More.” I went further, pinching their nipples and tugging them hard. I sucked on them, bit them, rolled the silver piercings in my teeth.
Later I used the Pure Wand on Riley, whose nipples were too sensitive even for my mouth. They requested I suck around them, a sharp contrast to Rosie’s nipples of steel.
Riley sat back on a chair, opened a book, and attempted to read an e.e. cummings poem. Their voice wavered, punctuated by small gasps. “Since feeling is first… who pays any attention to the syntax of things… will never wholly kiss you…”
Visions of high school flooded my mind. As an aspiring outcast writer, I quoted that poem all the time: wrote it on my shoes, my notebooks, my online profiles. I had it nearly memorized. While I watched someone gingerly kiss down Riley’s body, daring them to break character, I thought about all the small town homophobes from my high school. How boring their lives must be in comparison to this.
“Lady I swear by all flowers…”
The night ended with Stella beating me up again, just as deftly as before. It was masterful, the way she was able to pinpoint my exact pain tolerance. At one point I wondered aloud if I was much fun for her, since she’s kinky and I’m kind of a wuss. “It’s not about the amount of pain I inflict,” she replied. “I just enjoy pushing people to their limits.”
Oh, I was being pushed. And I loved it. I had marks all down my back the next day.
I was told I narrated a lot during these parties; in fact I became known as the Coven commentator. But as talkative as I was, as comfortable as I felt, my body still guarded itself in some inexplicable way. I’d yet to have an orgasm.
I came very close, once. Riley was wearing the Shilo and fucking me, on that same vintage chair where they recited the poem. I was holding the Magic Wand Rechargeable tightly to my clit, turning it up, closing my eyes and escaping into the sensation. Then I felt a hand sliding up and around my throat. It was Rachel, somehow knowing exactly what I needed. I nodded yes, yes, and she gently squeezed. I could feel orgasm on the horizon, but didn’t quite make it there.
I wasn’t worried about it, though. I knew the Coven would conjure more opportunities. I thought, it’s only a matter of time.