Punching the Collector in His Eye (Part III)

When he finished his work, he considerately asked if I wanted to put on a little makeup, because he knows that I don’t like to leave the house with at least some mascara and cover-up for any skin imperfections.  Without it I feel ugly and exposed.  Contrary to what most men seem to think, makeup is a mask.

“What about the puzzle?” I asked.  It is challenging, but I’d figured out one of the borders.  I’d hate to dump it back into the box.

“Leave it there.  You can work on it tomorrow,” he said.

I went to my bathroom to put on the 5-minute version of my face and asked him what I ought to change into, clothes-wise.

“You look perfect as you are.”

“Collector, it’s cold outside, and anyway I can’t wear this–” I gestured at my blue cotton gingham dress with a bow, reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland–“out in public.”

He went to the coat closet and took out his long quilted parka.  Everyone in the Tri-State area has a puffy coat for the hard winter weather.  It’s basically a sleeping bag with arms.

“Put on socks and your boots and wear this.  Nobody will see.”

So I bundled up and put my boots on.  While I was doing it, I noticed that my arrows were gone from underneath my bed, where I store them.  My bow was there, but the arrows were gone.

I didn’t say anything about that.

We took the elevator down and walked through the lobby and out onto the street.  The parka kept me warm, though I’d get a cold draft from underneath up my bare legs.  I still felt exposed, like everyone had Superman’s x-ray vision.

We got a cab and went to the zoo in Central Park, specifically the Tisch Children’s Zoo, which is a petting zoo full of nubian goats and sheep.  It even has an alpaca!

Who wouldn’t want to pet cute goats…?  You can touch their horns and weird feet!  I love goats!  I wish I could have goats!

He knew it would make me happy.  He knows how much I love animals.

He gave me quarters to buy food from the dispensers to feed the animals.  I didn’t have my purse, so I didn’t have any money.  In fact, he told me “don’t worry about your handbag” because he would “take care of everything” before we left the house.

He took a bunch of photos of me with his cell phone.

There were all of these little children running around the petting zoo and it made me happy, but it also hurt my heart.   Because I don’t get that, and the older I get, the more unlikely it is that it will ever happen.  How is it possible to be happy and sad at the same time?

Then we walked to The Strand bookstore, and he told me that I could pick out whatever I wanted.

He’s an avid bookworm (we all love the Kindle, but let’s be frank: nothing compares to a physical book), but he didn’t leave me alone so that he could browse by himself.  He was with me the entire time.  What did he think I would do…?  Run for it?

I feel so much pressure whenever he asks me to pick something for myself because he has such a demanding sense of aesthetics. I feel like I’m being judged on my taste.

I picked out a charming Berlitz “German for Travelers” phrase book from 1954 (when “Mein Herr” was still the default polite way to address a strange man) and a Tim O’Brien fiction book, In The Lake Of The Woods.  O’Brien can turn a phrase.  I also picked a hardbound book about pirates.

Then the Collector took me to the children’s section and said, “Pick out a book for your future daughter.”

And what, o what, am I to make of that…?

Before we went home, we stopped in a Duane Reade close to his place.  He went to the makeup section where all the nail polishes are.

“Are all of these the same?  Or is one brand better superior to the other?” he asked me.

“I dunno.  I guess Essie and OPI are the best,” I said.

He picked out a sky blue one, because it matched my dress.  No man has ever bought a cosmetic for me before.

An hour later, he was painting my toenails.  No man has ever done that for me, either. Not even a client.

“Margo,” he said, bent over my feet while I laid on the sofa with my legs in his lap, “I want you to allow me at least the opportunity to make you happy.  Didn’t we have fun today?”

What could I say to that?

12 thoughts on “Punching the Collector in His Eye (Part III)”

  1. It’s nice to see that he has a submissive, or at least a gentler side that has not been apparent in previous postings.

    And it looks as if he had the emotional intelligence to use this to defuse an explosive situation.

    Hopefully he will help you to be happy.

    Interestingly, the tapestry of the Unicorn in Captivity is highly symbolic of masculine submission which is a well-worn theme in courtly romance. Perhaps that was the reason for the jigsaw puzzle.

    1. He was trying to placate me and keep me in my place. The GREAT SLAVE UPRISING OF 2017 was effectively neutralized. Why do you think he took my arrows?

      Thank you for commenting. I read all comments very carefully.

      1. He could afford to be magnanimous because he’d already won. It also keeps you off balance mentally which he seems to quite enjoy.

      2. What I am trying to wrap my mind around is why you are still with The Collector. There is obviously more to the relationship that we, the readers, do not see on a daily basis but the stories that you post have us all concerned. My question is why do you allow him to treat you like this? Why can’t you leave him? Why can’t you see what we all see? You are such a strong person Margo, you deserve better.

        1. Well, it’s complicated.

          On paper, he’s the perfect man for me: extremely well-read, loves art, has a great job and a strong work ethic, and I love the way he looks. We have a lot of sexual chemistry, which, I admit, is somewhat problematical because I’m very easy to manipulate with sex, and I recognize that. Most importantly, he knows the worst thing about me, which is that I do sex work (it’s how we met) and he doesn’t judge me about it at all. Sometimes I feel like no man will ever love me if he knows the entire truth about my past, and that’s why I keep it such a secret from everyone except my blog readers. I know that’s pathetic, but that’s the way I feel, and I can tell you for a fact I’m not the only sex worker who worries about that.

          I’m also getting older, and beauty is ephemeral. I do my best to maintain mine, but it does fade, and my biological clock is ticking and over the last year it’s absolutely been driving me crazy and I get so scared that I’ll never have a family.

          What am I going to do? Get back on OK Cupid and have dates with “normal” men and just lie my ass off about my sexual needs and the fact that I still prodomme to pay the bills?

          He does care about me. He’s obsessed with me, in fact. Maybe it’s the best I can do…?

          1. Have you ever thought about returning back to graduate school? Maybe, if you finish your degree you could find a good job. I know you have tried to work a 9-5 desk job in the past but perhaps with your degree you could find something better? Not sure, just a thought.

            I don’t even know what to tell you about how to find a man that would even come close to your needs. The Collector seems to come close but I am just worried that he manipulates you and puts you down. I can tell that you are an educated person and you challenge him, I am just not so sure that he challenges you. You might outgrow him.

            As for children I can’t imagine the type of father he will be, he seems to have a loving and gentle side but also impulsive and short tempered. Children can also change a relationship.

          2. Hiya Miss Margo, me again. It’s hard to stay away. There’s a part of me that this is a continuation of the fiction/fantasies you were writing for Professor T. Rex, only a million times more disturbing.

            Legit question though based on this comment: are you really okay with giving The Collector a baby?

          3. Hi Random Canuck! Sorry for the late response. Busy week.

            “It’s hard to stay away from rubber-necking this slow motion train wreck of a relationship!” I hear ya. Try living it!

            You know, I’ve never really thought of it as giving him a baby. I must admit that my feelings in this have been very self-centered–I think of giving myself a baby. I guess I need to think about that.

            I don’t know. I feel very conflicted about it. The Collector is very late in his life to have another child, but guys do it all the time (especially rich guys), usually when they trade in their wife for a younger model. He’s the picture of health, so barring freak cancer or getting hit by a bus, he’d be around at least until she graduates college. She’d have two high-IQ parents and every material advantage in the world; the very best education, like his sons have. I could take very good care of her.

            On the other hand, given that I am acutely cognizant of the way my father used me to torture my mother, I am very concerned that giving him a baby would be giving him a hostage.

            And look at all that stuff he said to me when we had a fight! Can you imagine? If we got a divorce, is that what he’d tell the judge in a custody battle?! “She’s an unstable BDSM prostitute and I can prove it! She’s an unfit mother!”

            I dunno. His sons are a mixed bag, but I guess we all are.

            And then, there is the issue of whether or not you can have a BDSM relationship in a household with children. Most of the couples I know who do this and have kids have to really tone it down or quit doing it entirely unless they go on private weekend vacations a few times a year. The Collector does not like to be inconvenienced, and parenthood is a huge inconvenience (among other things).

            Finally, let’s face it: the guy is sort of nuts.

            I wish I had a better answer. Sorry.

  2. This type of manipulation is even scarier than to me the type mentioned in the previous stories. He’s tricking you and seems very obsessed with infantilizing and controlling your every move. It’s disturbing. Hes clearly a bad person you should get away from. I find myself very attracted to problematic men but now I don’t enter relationships with them, I just masturbate. Saved me a lot of grief just saying.

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