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In Episode 4.5 of The Turn On, we interview Rebel Miller, the author of "Awakening," about world building and sex scenes as character development.
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Kenrya: Come here, get off.
Kenrya: Today we're chatting with Rebel Miller, author of Awakening, the first book in the Realm series, which we read an excerpt from in the last episode. Rebel Miller is a fiction author who writes gripping romances about charismatic leaders who often turn social conventions on their heads. Rebel earned a graduate degree in communications and culture from Ryerson University and an undergraduate degree from the University of the West Indies. Rebel, plus hubby and sons, lives in the outskirts of Toronto, Canada, and enjoys overindulging in Pinot Grigio and caramel popcorn.
Kenrya: And binges on an eclectic mix of movies, music, and angst filled romance novels. Rebel, thanks so much for talking to us today.
Rebel Miller: Well, thanks for having me.
Kenrya: Yeah. We're excited that you're here and Erica is especially excited about this Pinot Grigio and caramel popcorn.
Rebel Miller: Whoa.
Erica: Oh, I read that and said we could totally spend a weekend together.
Rebel Miller: Oh, for sure. Are you kidding me? That my go to, my go to.
Kenrya: I don't like either one of those things.
Rebel Miller: What?
Kenrya: I feel like... I don't.
Rebel Miller: Okay. You don't know what good Pinot Grigio is. That's the problem.
Kenrya: I don't drink wine. I don't know how to live.
Rebel Miller: You don't drink wine.
Kenrya: I'm living wrong.
Rebel Miller: Okay.
Kenrya: I'm not a wine person. Yeah. And I don't like Carmel. I'm weird. It's fine. I'm okay with it.
Kenrya: Oh, before we get started, what are your preferred pronouns?
Rebel Miller: Preferred pronouns? Oh, she, her, that kind of thing.
Rebel Miller: Yep.
Kenrya: Exactly that. Okay. Erica and I are both she and her as well.
Rebel Miller: Excellent.
Erica: So, we read your bio and, again, me too on the Pinot Grigio and caramel popcorn. But I want to hear how you describe what you do. So, can you tell me in one sentence what is it that you do?
Rebel Miller: I guess... one sentence, I write romances that speak to today's romance reader, and that person is living in a world where diversity is pretty much the norm and kind of trying to talk about identity in a different way. Yeah.
Erica: That's great. Did you always want to be an author?
Rebel Miller: It's so funny. I've always been a writer. So, I've done public relations in my lifetime. I do like consulting in that type of realm. And then, it was really five years ago, so what is that, 2014, 2015 actually, that it just occurred to me, you know what? The time is now. I've thought about it when I was in my early twenties and writing and I just didn't feel that I was emotionally ready. I didn't know what I had to say, kind of what I could add to the various romances or just fiction in general.
Rebel Miller: And then, as I got older, I had the two kids and my husband. I had more life experience behind me. I started to feel like, you know what? I was like, you know what? I think I do have something to say. And, of course, I've been reading romances all my life. Right? Like I remember being like... what was I, under ten and hiding in my mother's closet with a romance.
Kenrya: Yo, same.
Rebel Miller: What can I say?
Kenrya: I've read through like all of Danielle's Steel's books.
Rebel Miller: Oh, yeah.
Kenrya: Starting in the second grade. I'm like, it's so highly inappropriate. But like second, third, and fourth grade I was consumed with Danielle Steel.
Rebel Miller: Really? Exactly.
Kenrya: So wrong.
Rebel Miller: But they're great. That's the thing about romance novels. I think a lot of people... it's changing now, I think, especially with E-reading. I think people are viewing romances a little different because they're kind of open more open to it and willing to read it.
Rebel Miller: I remember giving a seminar or a talk about my books and I said, people turn their nose up at romance every now and then, but then I'm like, when you go to Walmart, what are the books filling up those shelves?
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: Romance. I was like, who's reading them? So-
Erica: Yeah, that's right.
Rebel Miller: It's fulfilling the demand. Of course people love romance. You know?
Kenrya: What do you think changed? Why do you think it's like more out in the open now?
Rebel Miller: Well, I'm not sure. With the publishing industry and the Internet, there's been a lot of disruption, I'm sure you ladies know, in terms of a lot of writers being able to get their work out there.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: And what I noticed is, of course, you've got a lot more writers doing that. And then, because you're reading on your E-books or your mobile devices, not everybody knows that you're reading a romance. So, I think you can be on the train, or the subway, or the bus reading a romance now, whereas before I remember having to hide the book cover kind of.
Rebel Miller: I didn't want anybody to see. And now, it's not a problem. You can kind of get away with that indulgence. Like you download two books at once and you just kind of keep ripping through them. And so, I think there's just so many things in the industry changing, people changing. Look at diversity nowadays and people just thinking, I'm interested in learning more and being a little bit more free with kind of my thoughts, and my thinking, and love in general. Right?
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Kenrya: Yeah. That's what's up. I'm thinking, even kind of to that point about how so many more folks can really get out there and get their work out there, I think you are a really great example of that. And a quick look at your website even makes it clear that, beyond being a writer, you're a business woman. Like you can buy your books on your site, T-shirts, pillows, mugs, all kinds of branded stuff. I'm wondering what led you to start your own company and self-publish?
Rebel Miller: Yeah. So, for sure, I think any writer starting out thinks, well, do I go traditional, meaning with maybe the big publishers? Or do I do it myself? And, for me, I think I had a comfort level with my PR background already writing, understanding what goes into a production of a piece or a product that I could handle it on my own. And then, there was the whole idea of do I really want to go through years of rejection probably, or to get my voice heard? And the truth is, my novels are different. I mean, they are erotic romance, which is always great. Hot, sticky romance will always get you pretty far.
Rebel Miller: But they take a different turn in terms of the... I try to tackle social issues in a way that are a little bit different. These novels, for example, Awakening, the first and the trilogy, it's a futuristic trilogy. So, that's not something that I think the mainstream publisher would be ready to understand or willing to understand. And I think I made the right choice going self-publishing because you always find your tribe, right? Those people who are interested in... there's some group of people for everybody. So, in doing it on my own, I was able to find that group on my own. So, it worked out.
Kenrya: So, I mean, it's interesting that you mentioned, and I mean, to us, like the whole reason that we picked your book is because we're in awe of this like whole ass universe that you build with this series.
Rebel Miller: Oh, good.
Kenrya: Yeah. I mean, that type of world building usually is reserved for like dystopian YA novels, right? It's like The Hunger Games and all of those kinds of things. And it's really impressive how you created this entire, like I said, not just a world, but a universe that these folks and Kira and all of her ilk inhabit. Because we just read an excerpt for the show, of course, can you give us kind of a quick overview of the setting for the action in Awakening?
Rebel Miller: For sure. So, the world building was something that I decided on pretty deliberately early on in deciding whether or not I wanted to write a romance that was contemporary, historical, or futuristic. And I did futuristic specifically for that reason. I said, I don't really know many... at least I wasn't aware of it at the time, erotic novels or eromances that were diverse in this way and set in the future in this way.
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: And I really enjoyed the opportunity to develop my own culture and my own kind of society.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: So, for The Realm, it's a society that's made up of a number of worlds. And the worlds are grouped into dominions. So, there are five of them. And I guess the biggest part that makes it different, besides it being in the future, is the fact that society is based on a caste or social class system. And there are four in this particular series.
Rebel Miller: So, there's the lowest caste, which is the subordinate caste. And then, above that-
Kenrya: Right. That's where Kira is.
Rebel Miller: That's where Kira is. And then, you have the protectorate caste, which are, of course, the protectors, kind of what you would call our military. And that's where the other part of her love triangle ties.
Rebel Miller: It ties to that group. Above that would be the Senate. And those are the senators, and they're kind of like the government officials. And that's where Gannon is, the other part of that love triangle. And at the top, of course, is the elite. So, you've got these four different castes. And there is kind of a spoken/unspoken rule that you don't really have relationships between certain castes. So, the upper two castes, of course, they're free to do what they want. And the lower two are able to do the same. And it gets tricky with this love triangle because, of course, you've got Kira in love with men from different castes and one of them is considered forbidden.
Rebel Miller: So, it adds to the whole kind of tension to the book. And it also kind of talks about society in a different way. Because what I liked about setting it up in this way is that it wasn't so much about sexual orientation or race that people were discriminating against, it was more against the caste. So, you'll find a lot of fluidity in the characters in terms of who they love, how many people they love, because there's polyamory, which I call multiples in this case in the novel. But that's normal. That's okay. It's more about what role you've been predetermined to fill and that you should stay in that particular box. So, it takes you on a journey about her deciding, well, am I going to stay in the box or not? Can I just be free to love who I love or do I want to follow the rules?
Erica: Where did you start with writing this? You said you were deliberate about the decision to make it futuristic and map out, set a new environment. But where did you start? Was it character or location?
Rebel Miller: Yeah. So, I definitely started with character. As a writer, you ladies know, you always say is it character or plot? Right? Which one comes first? And, for me, I've discovered that I think it's more character. Of course, in a year from now, it might change to plot. But I see the characters. If you've got a great character, someone who someone can resonate with, they see themselves in, and kind of can root for, then you're so interested in seeing what they do next.
Rebel Miller: So, once I had the girl, the protagonist in mind, I was able to say, okay. Well, where do I want to put her? Right? And that's where I said, well, this is where I want to kind of take a challenge and put her in a different setting that I don't think anybody has ever seen before.
Erica: What was the most difficult part of creating the series?
Rebel Miller: That's a good question. Probably... I don't know. It's so hard. I don't know if I can say there was a difficult part of creating it. It was so much fun to write, that's the thing.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: The thing about writing, and I tell people all the time, you come up with an idea of how you want it to end up, and then it changes as you go.
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: I think that's great. It comes down to the character. And that's why I say the character bosses me around and says, no, I wouldn't do that. So, I really have to go, okay. Well, you pivot, and you pivot, and you pivot in the storyline. You say, well, how am I bringing that to a particular end that makes sense for the people and that honors kind of the readers and what their expectations are and what I've set up for it? So, I think it was just pivoting all the time. Just going, okay. Well, book two, this is not where we wanted to go, but this is how it's going to be interesting and how it's still to be proximate, and still really drive the story.
Kenrya: Wow. I mean, I think it comes through and especially that attention to who that character is. Like I very, very early, even when we met Kira when she was younger I was already in, or I was like, okay.
Rebel Miller: Oh, good.
Kenrya: I see who she is. I'm interested in learning more. Oh, she can't come? What's happening there? Like I want to know what's going on. And, as things unfold and things get scary sometimes, I was never really able to put it down because I was so totally drawn into her world, not just where she lived, but internally. Because she dealt with so many external and internal conflicts and you really care about where she lands in each one of those. So, I thought that was pretty dope. And, speaking of which, as we read in your bio, you said you're fond of creating characters who step outside of the expected. I'm wondering how that manifests for you in Awakening.
Rebel Miller: So, for me, it definitely was the whole relationship between her and the two men. So, I played with the idea of... I talked about polyamory being a normal... it's accepted now but in more of a mainstream accepted in this futuristic setting that that was never an issue. It was an option. So, for her, I wanted her to have multiple challenges and conflicts, as you say. It's, well I could be with one man, or I could be with both men, but can I be with that guy if that guy doesn't want me to be with that person.
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: And then there's the whole restricted caste thing. My parents aren't going to like this at all.
Kenrya: You know they got they own situation going on.
Rebel Miller: Then they have they own situation going on. And then, the hypocrisy there. I really enjoyed writing about the hypocrisy piece.
Erica: Yeah. I was like... like when her heart stopped.
Rebel Miller: That's a bad one.
Kenrya: I was like, you have got to be kidding. I mean, it's not like you didn't foreshadow it and we got to see her friend with her partners, but it was still really like, oh, okay. I felt that.
Rebel Miller: That's right. That's right. So, it was really manifesting in terms of her kind of stepping out of the box, turning tradition on its head because she's saying, I have all this choice. It's really up to me. It's now up to me in terms of what I do. And I think, when you look at today in the media or just in society with diversity and then Me Too and women's empowerment and how we're kind of coming into our own, I thought that was a really good message. Because I think there's an opportunity for people to say, okay. Yeah, we're getting empowered, we are empowered as women. And now, what do I do with all of it? Now it's all on me, right?, to decide how my life is going to live, who I'm going to love. So, I like doing it that way.
Erica: Cool. So, in the book it's very clear that Kira owns her own power, but she's also drawn to very powerful men. So, I kind of want to twist this question around to you. I know you're married, but what are you most attracted to in a potential sexual partner? We'll take this back to the pre-marriage Rebel. Or partner in general, I guess, right?
Rebel Miller: Yeah. So, I am a heterosexual woman. So, I guess, of course, I'd want a man. I think he'd have to be someone who... I guess I look at my husband and see what I ended up and I think that was the ideal person. He's strong, but he's able to be very compassionate, very passionate as well. Very much a person who is a family person. But, at the same time, when we talk about the romance and all that, he gets it. He's turned on by it. He thinks he is the inspiration for my novels.
Kenrya: He's like, I'll take that credit, thanks.
Erica: That's me. That's me. That's me.
Rebel Miller: [inaudible 00:17:07]. So, I like a guy who is able to see himself as a partner, a supporter of the woman that he's with. And I think, we talk about women being empowered and who they are, and the next book I'm writing really touches on... it's Ascendance, which will be the fourth book in the series, talks about the men being in a subordinate position and the woman being in the elite position and how he is still considered a man in supporting a woman who is in a higher, powerful position. So, that one is very interesting as I'm writing that one.
Kenrya: Is that going to be with Leanna?
Rebel Miller: And Kira's brother.
Kenrya: Oh. Get out. And see, I ain't get that far. Okay. That's exciting.
Rebel Miller: A little sneaky.
Kenrya: Okay. Y'all heard it here first.
Erica: So, Rebel, have you ever been torn between two people like Kira has?
Rebel Miller: Wow. Good question. You know what, no. I wish I had been.
Erica: Well, you wrote it very well.
Rebel Miller: This is my fantasy.
Rebel Miller: Well, this is it, it's my fantasy. I think that's what it's made into. You're inspired by the things that happen sometimes and things that maybe you wish could happen. Right?
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Kenrya: I'm trying to think, have I ever been...
Rebel Miller: Have you been in a love triangle?
Kenrya: I don't think I ever have, but I've always been like a super duper serial monogamist. So like I get blinders once I am like fully in with somebody. So, I guess, no.
Rebel Miller: Yeah. I know what you mean.
Erica: I mean, I have, but I don't know if it was really like true love or just me like being a hoe. But that wasn't really for me. I mean, but either way, it was fun.
Kenrya: I mean, that's the-
Rebel Miller: I want to add to that because I think we don't know... like we're not open to necessarily being with more than one on a regular basis.
Rebel Miller: You know what I mean? Like if we thought it was an option, maybe we would realize we were in love triangles more than we do.
Erica: And I might have been in a few and not known it. Well, you know what, for fact, I know I had some and didn't know until later, after the fact. Like, oh shit, you. Okay.
Kenrya: Yeah. Yeah. Now that you say that, I mean I was married to a whole ass cheating husband, so I guess I was. Well now, that's a new perspective. Damn. Okay. Oh, so another thing that we're interested in is, you said that in the very beginning you were trying to figure out was this going to be present day, historical, was it going to be futuristic. What draws you to like the speculative fiction? And also, part two of that, what draws you to writing about the erotic?
Rebel Miller: Oh, yeah. So, I've always read more of the erotic romances, unfortunately, that was yes, when I was under ten. That's when it started.
Rebel Miller: Don't tell my mother. I didn't know that. You know what it was, why I'm drawn to erotic romance? I have read those romances that are not erotic. And I always felt like I was missing part of the story. That when they faded to black, for example, and you don't get the love scene or if you got the love scene and they kind of glossed over it.
Kenrya: I mean, that's so annoying.
Rebel Miller: I felt like I was missing a big part of the story. So I, without a doubt, knew I was going to write an erotic romance because in my love scenes you're seeing it's not just, boom chicka boom chicka wow wow.
Rebel Miller: Now we just cut from the story and then get back to the story. It's really taking a person from the beginning of the love scene, in an explicit hot, passionate one, to another part of their emotion at the end of it.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative). Absolutely.
Rebel Miller: So, they can kind of go through a process of development throughout it. So, it's not just the sex, but it is the development of the characters and how they felt from the beginning to the end. So, I knew I wanted to keep that because I thought, sex is a really, really good thing. And it tells you so much. You speak. It's a language on its own that you can kind of can communicate with a partner. And, of course, as a reader you kind of understand more about them and how they interact and you just learn so much more about that way. It's a very intimate part of the whole story.
Rebel Miller: That I don't think...
Kenrya: And it's a time when people are vulnerable in a way that they usually aren't. Right?
Rebel Miller: Yeah. That's right. That's when you usually let down a lot of your guard and show who you really are.
Kenrya: It makes sense to me. And then, the other part of that question is, what drew you to this futuristic setting?
Rebel Miller: I wanted the chance to develop my own world. So, I wanted to be able to create languages, to create a system, a technology, kind of governance and law of cultural kind of references that people like myself who are avid readers can really get immersed into the story even farther. So, it's not just a romance, it's really you're part of something. That, if you're reading this book, you're kind of part of that. You know what the Realm series is about. You get those little quotes when somebody talks about Solomon or something like that, you know?
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Rebel Miller: Like that's what they use for time-lapse when they travel. It kind of brings you together as a community of readers around a particular storyline. So, I thought it was just a great way to immerse the readers in the book even more.
Kenrya: Yeah. It's effective, for sure. So, I'm interested in what you're reading outside of your own work right now.
Rebel Miller: Yeah. So, I read a lot of different things, not necessarily just romance, but like thrillers, you know James Rollins, Dan Brown, stuff like that. But in terms of romance, I was reading Sylvia Day quite a bit, and for more erotic romance, there was some Jane Ryland stuff. I read anything I can get my hands on really.
Rebel Miller: I find, when I'm writing though, it kind of gets slowed down because you're so focused on any time you have to actually get some thoughts on some quote unquote paper.
Kenrya: Yeah, I mean that's kind of the worst part about writing a book is that you don't get to read as much, unless it's something that provides reference for what you're writing.
Rebel Miller: That's so true. That is something that I was like, oh my gosh, now I'm part of the writing of the book. I'm not necessarily reading as many as I used. But, yeah.
Kenrya: Are you able to go back? Like besides all the edits and all of that kind of stuff, are you ever able to just go back and read them for pleasure, your own books?
Rebel Miller: No.
Rebel Miller: I don't. You know what it is? It's like done. I feel like, okay I'm done. Because you'll analyze it, won't you? You know what I mean?
Rebel Miller: And kind of get too picky. So, in preparing for this interview I was like, okay, I'm going to go back to that excerpt that you're referring to. I was like, oh yeah, I remember. That was a good piece.
Erica: I did damn good.
Rebel Miller: That was perfect. But it's just like an actor would say they don't watch their own movies sometimes. I just feel like, no. We're done with that chapter. I'm moving on.
Kenrya: Yeah. I deal with the same thing. I was doing a podcast interview about my latest book and somebody asked me what was the best part of the process. And I was like, I finished. Like it was over. It was fantastic doing it, but, once I was done with that, I was ready to move on to the next thing. And I could appreciate the accomplishment of having finished it. But I think, when you write, you're always eager to get onto the next thing because that's the fun part of it is the dreaming and the creating of the new thing.
Rebel Miller: It is. And when you're writing it, that's the thing... someone said, the hardest part of writing is writing because you've got the whole story in your head, and now you're trying to articulate it in a storyline. And it can kind of be like, oh my gosh, I can't wait to write the next one.
Rebel Miller: And, yeah. You just can't wait. So, I end up having to say, okay. What do I enjoy about it? Having to remind like, what am I enjoying about this scene? And then, it usually kind of helps me get back focused. But, yeah. I get it.
Erica: So, one of the things we do as we're wrapping up our interviews is ask a would you rather question. So-
Rebel Miller: Oh, no.
Erica: Prepare yourself. So, as I read your books... so I'm a huge Harry Potter fan. And so, this is far from Harry Potter but the worlds and the detail, I mean I could totally see myself at a theme park for the Realm. I could probably see myself at the Realm, going into the expo, all of that. So, I imagine this book as portrayed on the screen. So, would you rather have your book adapted into a movie by either Tyler Perry, so think Madea, loud characters, overacting, or the two white dudes that South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone. So, do you want a Madea style Realm or a South Park style Realm?
Rebel Miller: So good, this question. Oh my god. You know what? I'm going to say South Park.
Kenrya: Okay. Please explain.
Rebel Miller: Weird. Okay. So, I feel like South Park, I don't watch it often, but I know they've got like an off colored humor every now and then.
Kenrya: Oh, yeah.
Rebel Miller: I feel like they would get the nuances of this erotic romance in a way that... Tyler Perry is like over the top like big time.
Rebel Miller: I don't this movie... it's already a really dense, rich story. South Park would just add like a tongue in cheek to it that would take it over the edge, I think.
Kenrya: I see you.
Erica: I dig it. I dig it.
Rebel Miller: Oh my gosh. That's crazy.
Kenrya: Okay. So, that was awesome and that's a good place for us to end. We want to say thank you so much for joining us. And can you tell us where people can find you and your work?
Rebel Miller: Oh, for sure. You can go to my website, RebelMillerbooks.com. Or you can find me on Amazon, on iBooks, Barnes and Noble, wherever we they sell digital books. And you can also order print books through some of those online retailers too. But definitely check me out on my website. We just have all the information there and on my social media.
Kenrya: Awesome. And those are on Twitter, you're RebelMillerBoox, but it's B-O-O-X.
Rebel Miller: Sounds good.
Kenrya: And, on IG, it's RebelMillerBooks with an S at the end. Yes.
Rebel Miller: Thanks.
Kenrya: Awesome. That wraps up this episode of The Turn On. Thanks everyone for joining us.
Erica: Thank you so much for your time today.
Rebel Miller: Thank you. Thank you for having me. Loved it. I really had a good time.
Erica: All right.
Kenrya: Thanks, so did we.
Kenrya: This week's episode was produced by us, Kenrya and Erica, and edited by B'Lystic. The theme song is from Brazy. Please subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast app, follow us on Twitter at TheTurnOnPod, and Instagram at TheTurnOnPodcast, and find links to books, transcripts, guest info, and other fun stuff at TheTurnOnPodcast.com. Bye.
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In Episode 4 of The Turn On, we read an excerpt from "Awakening," the first book in Rebel Miller's Realm series, "forbidden" love and the times we've talked ourselves into trouble.
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Kenrya: Come here. Get off.
Erica: Welcome to this week's episode of the Turn On. We're reading Awakening by Rebel Miller. It was published in 2015. This story has a lot going on. We're going to read an excerpt from a larger book. The larger book is a part of a series. All of it has a lot going on. We'll get into that in a little bit. We don't want to give too much away in order to...
Kenrya: Leave you with surprise and wonder.
Erica: Leave you with something to wonder about and a reason to read the series. Nonetheless-
Kenrya: Yeah, it's a speculative fiction.
Erica: It's a speculative fiction piece, and we're about to get started. So sit back, relax, get your wine, your weed, your accoutrements, and enjoy.
Kenrya: Awakening by Rebel Miller.
Kenrya: "What do you want?"
Kenrya: "I want you."
I stared at him, mouth agape. He'd obviously lost his mind so I need to spell things out for him. "Gannon," I began cautiously, "senators don't have relationships with subordinates. They have affairs and liaisons, which are kept secret." Anger rose within me as I reminded him of the reality of our worlds. "I won't be used that way and it offends me that you would seriously suggest it."
"That's easy for you to say."
"Rules are made to be broken, Kira," he growled out.
I gave him a pitying look, "Gannon, please. The fact that you think I would use you..." Gannon turned on his heel, but abruptly stopped part way to face me once again.
"Is it only my status that's the problem?"
"What else would it be?"
"What about Tai?"
I glanced away. "Tai doesn't want me," I said with a shrug of feigned nonchalance. I love Tai, but he didn't love me so I would have to find a way to deal with that.
"I want you and I know you want me."
I threw my hands in the air, "We're going around in circles, Gannon. Okay, yes. I want you more than I want to admit. I'm so blasted desperate for you at times I can't even think straight and it confuses me, but we can't have anything more than this, whatever this is."
His eyes glittered in the dim light of the room as he approached me slowly, his head cocked. "You're desperate for me?"
I couldn't help but roll my eyes. "That's what you took away from what I said?"
He came to stand in front of me, his chest brushing against my breasts as his lips curved into a smirk. "Desperate I can work with." He suddenly appeared his usual self, powerful, arrogant, and in control, three characteristics that made me weak when it came to Gannon Consul. My heart lept, even as I started to turn my head away. He placed a head at the nape of my neck, stopping me. Watching me closely, he eased his hand into the back of my hair, kneading the small muscles of my scalp as he went.
I tried to muffle a sigh of pleasure and ended up groaning instead. I closed my eyes, pushing the back of my head against the steady pressure of his exploring fingers. "I shouldn't be allowing you to do this," I whispered as I opened my eyes.
A few moments later, Gannon moved his hands back to my neck, then around my shoulders, and massaged away the tension of the minsters meeting and the argument with Tai. His steady touch lulled me into a sense of security. I closed my eyes, startled when Gannon's hands curved around my back and he pulled me flush against him. He stared at me with a farrow and hungry expression. I tried to lean back, wanting to resist the way the warmth of his body drew me in, but he held me in a firm embrace.
"Tell me you want me."
I shook my head, biting down hard on my bottom lip. He narrowed his eyes as his heart pounded heavily just above my breasts. After a long moment considering me, he lowered his mouth. My body readied itself immediately for his kiss, softening and leaning into him. I sighed as I raised my mouth, and with a heavy dose of shame, flushed when he dipped his head to place a light kiss at my cheek instead. Halls, could I be an easier conquest?
He chuckled. "Are you still trying to deny what's between us?" He asked when he licked just below my jaw. "Tell me what you want."
I sighed. "I want you to kiss me." He nipped my neck with the edge of his teeth.
"No, you want more than that. Tell me," he demanded.
My body trembled at the steel in his voice. I started to pant, my lungs trying to stay ahead of my leaping pulse. Its pace only increased when he ran his tongue over my lips, giving me a taste of what I wanted but refused stubbornly to admit. All above, I wanted to be a stronger woman, but the man I had loved for years didn't want me. The one I couldn't stop thinking about was more than willing to have me. In that moment, I was tired of fighting him. Gannon understood the terms of our reality as well as I did, maybe even more. I would take what he was offering and enjoy it for what it was.
Leaning back, I held his gaze and took a deep breath. "I want you to fuck me." I barely got the words out before he captured my mouth with his. He moved both hands to the sides of my face, holding me in place. Instantly, I was lost to an overwhelming assault of his crisp and sharp taste. Gasping, I grabbed the front of his shirt to steady myself as he forced me to walk backward. At the same time, I ran my hands over the front of his chest to locate each of the buttons of his jacket. I blindly opened them and then groaned when I found a shirt underneath. "Too many clothes," I complained as his teeth grazed my lips.
He grunted and stopped our blind trek. We continued kissing, even as he removed the shirt swiftly, his moves as agitated as mine had been. I trailed trembling hands along his jaw and into the lushness of his hair. When he'd free himself from the clothing, he tackled the buttons running down the front of my dress. I had taken special care when getting dressed that morning, wanting to be sure that I looked as professional and capable as possible. My knee-length black dress was sleek and sophisticated, its only embellishment a woven belt that buckled to the side. I thought it looked smart and gave me a proficient air. Gannon couldn't have cared less.
I stood panting into the heat of his kisses while he tugged at the buttons, most surviving his onslaught while the rest made rapping sounds as they fell to the wood floors. Soon I took matters into my own hands and managed to remove my belt without it coming to any harm. Gannon leaned back, his eyes shown bright as they ran down the length of my body. Now that my dress had been wrangled open, I allowed it to fall from my shoulders and stood before him in my bra, panties, sheer black leggings, and high heel boots.
Nostrils flared, he swallowed hard before placing a hand against the floor to ceiling window behind me and pushing me harshly against it. I jolted upon impact, arching away from the coolness of the glass at my back. He surged forward, capturing my mouth once again.
"Did I hurt you?"
I shook my head, lowering my eyes to his chest and drinking in the sight of him with sputtering breaths. I'd known Gannon was fit, but I hadn't realized just how much his clothing hid from my imagination. I splayed my fingers, running them along the thick planes of muscle along his arms, shoulder, and chest. His breath hitched as I trailed a path across his nipples and down to a taut waist that looked to be carved out of stone. I circled his navel and ran my tongue along my bottom lip as I imagine licking him there.
Gannon's hold on my waist tightened sharply. I glanced up to find him staring at me with a hunger that sent a shiver up my spine. If he was intimidating before, watching the transformation that came over him when lust came to life between us was nothing short of heart-stopping. Face tense, he brought up his wrist to my eye level. "My health data is current. I can show you." I smiled when he showed me the information on his comm.
"Thank you," I said, suddenly shy. "I'm on birth control." I moved to show him my own record of health, but he stopped me by sliding a hand around my neck and running a thumb along my jaw.
"I trust you," he said. The flickering lights coming through the window reflected in his eyes, changing them from silver blue to sea blue and everything in between. The hand resting behind me lowered to unclasp my bra. I shifted to let it join my dress on the floor. Gannon parted his lips as he placed a hand under one of my breast, feeling its heavy weight and molding it as he thumbed the puckered nipple. I sighed at the intensity of the sensation that swept through me. My skin was on fire, kindling, burning for release.
No doubt Gannon could feel the scorching heat assailing my body. He closed his eyes briefly, and the look he gave me when he re-opened them was almost hostile. He kissed me then, taking my lips so harshly that they were sure to be bruised the next day. The thought of being marked by his passion sent unexpected thrill through me. Gannon forced his way past my lips and licked forcefully to gain entry. Still stroking my breast, he raised his other hand to my hair, his fingers curling into it tightly. I cringed at the bite of pain, but my heart sped when he soothed my scalp with a knowing touch soon after. I lapped after his tongue on my own, trying to taste every part of him.
Suddenly he shifted and placed his hands behind my thighs, lifting me off the ground. As he licked deeper into my mouth, our tongues danced around each other. Meanwhile, I clawed at his back, trying to get closer, even though we were already skin to skin. Gannon turned and carried me the short distance to his dimly-lit bedroom. I reveled in the pressure of his weight on me as he lowered us to the bed.
Now cradling him between my hips, I became desperate to feel him inside me and writhed against his heavy arousal, but Gannon's hand was suddenly at my hip, holding me still. "Don't move," he said tightly, giving me a desperate look that flooded my brain with a new wave of heat. Responding to the desire evident in his gaze, I ran my hands over his chest and down his waist. A thrill of anticipation blazed through me as I reached for the thickness of his cock.
I frowned when Gannon grabbed my hands and pressed them beside my head. "Don't move these either." He threw me a curious look before he leaned over me, pressing me deep into the bed. Gannon kissed and licked every inch of skin down by neck and across my chest. He lapped at my breasts, making me gasp when he nipped at their puckered buds. I lifted my head, wanting to watch him as he owned my body, but I couldn't see him through his disheveled hair.
Without thinking, I smoothed it back. I had only a moment to relish the cool locks between my fingers before Gannon landed a swift slap on my thigh. The stinging pain that bloomed made me cry out. He considered me carefully, "You moved," he said by way of explanation. I stared at him, not sure what to make of the slap, his nonchalance, or the way my body ignited in response to both.
Holding his gaze, I slowly lifted my hand, lifting it beside my head once again. I realized that he wanted me available to him at his mercy and waiting for his direction. Somewhere inside me, I thought I should have felt affronted, but who was I fooling? I wasn't a virgin. I have friends who desired a bit of pain and aggression with their sex. I just had never believed myself to be like them. It seemed Gannon had awakened a need inside me that had lain dormant, seeking the right circumstance or person to give it reason to rise.
Gannon grinned wickedly as he pushed up and off of me to stand beside the bed, dragging my legs and panties with him as he went. When he reached my boots, he unzipped them and tugged everything off. I only had to lift my hips to help him. He seemed more than capable in this area. My eyes narrowed as he started to unbuckle his pants. A man of Gannon's stature and looks probably has more than one of these liaisons going on at any one time. The thought had popped into my mind many times before, and I found comfort in it as I deflected his advances, but now as I lay before him naked in his private apartment, waiting for him to fuck me as I requested, no, as I had begged him to, it stung. "Grow up, Metallurgist." I knew what this was. I wouldn't let my heart get involved, and surely Gannon wouldn't.
I didn't have time to follow the unsettling turn of my thoughts further after Gannon finally stood completely naked before me. My mouth went dry. I clenched my hands, fighting off the urge to reach for him. The rest of him was even more imposingly beautiful than I'd anticipated. His cock was long, thick, and so hard it curved up to tap against his taut belly. Roughly, he ran a hand along the length of it, stroking it from root to tip, where a pearly gleam glistened and beckoned.
I pressed my lips together, anxious to get started, to feel deep inside me the power that radiated off him. I glanced up to find his eyes roving over my breasts and waist to land between my thighs where I enjoyed the heat of his gaze. He climbed back onto the bed, running a hand up my inner thigh as he approached.
"Dai, t'au falahra," he muttered, almost reverently. I only needed to know the meaning of falahra to know that he was admiring me, calling me beautiful. I flushed at the sound of the foreign language on his tongue. It was one of the sexiest things I'd ever heard. Desperate, I opened my thighs wider, seeking to entice him, since I couldn't touch him and bend him to my will. My body rejoiced the moment he took my mouth, igniting the very core of me.
The ache between my legs deepened agonizingly, making me so wet I was certain he could smell my arousal. When he dragged his blunt fingers through the slick folds of my sex, I couldn't stand it anymore. I thrust both my hands into his hair, pulling him down to me. For a few, exhilarating seconds, I sucked greedily at his lips, his tongue, and the skin around his mouth, trying to taste as much as I could.
Though he had promised it, I still cried out in surprise when he slapped me again, this time much harder and on the other thigh. I squeezed my eyes shut and panted through the pain and groaned as it faded into a dull heat. Gannon ran a palm over the tingling spot on my thigh.
"You okay?" I opened my eyes to find him watching me. From his careful expression, I knew he was wondering whether I was still with him, whether I could handle it. I licked my lips.
"You seem so much stronger than that."
Gannon's nostrils flared as deep satisfaction filled his face. He kissed me with a new sense of urgency and repositioned himself and ran his arms up mine and grabbed my wrist. Finally, I felt his cock nudge at my sex. With a quick shift in position, he thrust into me so hard I bounced up the bed. I cried out, clenching my fists as I tightened around every inch he buried inside me.
"Fuck," he growled out as I became more frantic in response to his thrust. He ran a hand along the side of my neck, his fingers stroking firmly against my pulse. My heart stuttered and I gasped. A second later, I calmed down enough for him to regain control of our pace.
"Gannon," I begged.
"I know, lahra," he said. I flushed when he used the endearing abbreviation of falahra. He thrust again, my body clenched around his cock so tightly I felt tears well into my eyes. Gannon's deep groan vibrated through the bed.
All of a sudden, an unwanted thought entered my mind. What if I couldn't reach orgasm? I would be mortified and inconsolable. I'd been close before during sex, never as close as this, but it was a possibility all the same. I squeezed my eyes shut, trying to drive away the idea.
"Look at me," Gannon said, his chest laboring. I dragged my lids open. "I want your eyes on me when you cum." He stared into my eyes as he forced himself deeper still on his next thrust. I nodded reflexively, wondering how to manage that feat. If he got me to orgasm, I would probably lose all control of my body's coordination. I was nearly incoherent with arousal as it was.
As soon as the thought entered my mind, I felt a flutter deep within me. I grasped at it desperately, knowing that I was almost there. Gannon must have sensed how near I was to the edge, his pace increased and strengthened. He was a piston, fucking in and out of my body so hard I thought I would combust for the sheer ferocity of his thrust.
Suddenly, I felt him stiffen and lengthen almost painfully inside me. "Kira," he whispered hoarsely. His movements became less coordinated above me, so I took advantage of his lack of control to slip my hand into his hair. I grabbed a fist full of it pulling his mouth back to mine. He groaned just as I felt my body tighten and splinter into the most achingly deep orgasm I had ever had.
I cried out his name as he pounded into me again and again. His body shook as he forced himself ever deeper inside me, the power of his orgasm visible in every vein standing in relief along his neck and shoulders. He collapsed on top of me. I threw my arms around him, holding him close as the wake of our orgasms rippled through our bodies.
Eventually, after an exquisitely long time, our breathing and pulses slowed. Gannon eased up and rested a cheek on one of his fists as he stared down at me. Using his other hand, he traced undefined shapes onto my shoulder. I smiled at him. Gods, he was so beautiful, a stunning sculpture come to life. His meandering gaze met my own, pinning me into the bed. The way he looked at me both confused and electrified me. This is just a temporary diversion. I repeated the phrase over and over in my head, holding onto it.
I fidgeted a bit under his weight, and he shifted his hips, dragging his cock out of me as he moved to rest at my side. He was still hard, which was only mildly surprising me. He was the most virile man I had ever had sex with. "You certainly know how to get your way, don't you?" I murmured, running a finger along the side of his face and up across his hairline.
He smiled them planted a loud kiss on my mouth. "Female citizens everywhere must have stories to tell, I added." His smile slipped a bit. "I guess when you can give orgasms like that, I shouldn't be surprised," I said, watching his hair fall through my fingers. "Thank you." I looked into his eyes to find his gaze had shuddered. I stayed my hand. "What?"
"Are you thanking me for fucking you?"
"That's not what I..."
"Then what did you mean?"
I hesitated. Telling him he'd finally given me the type of orgasm I'd been searching for didn't seem to be a remark he would approve of, and truthfully, it wasn't the reason I thanked him. I was trying to put distance between us to remind him and myself both that this was only temporary, for fun.
He pushed himself off me to sit at the edge of the bed. For a full minute, he sat in silence, looking away from me with his hands clenched. He seemed to be caught in a deep struggle with himself. I laid behind him, feeling the need to do something, but afraid to say anything. The tension in the room elevated with our every breath. Finally, he turned to me on a heavy breath as though he had come to some difficult decision.
"I guess that will have to be enough," he said before pressing his body on top of me and easing into me again.
Erica: Welcome back. That was Awakening by Rebel Miller this was a hot and steamy one. So the first thing that stood out to me was this... Well, you know what? Before we get into this scene, Kenrya, will you set the scene and just kind of give us a little bit of background on the story itself?
Kenrya: Sure. So as you mentioned at the top of the show, this book is part of a series, and it's the Realm series, and it's speculative fiction, so it's like fiction of a future world. The people in this world look all kinds of ways. So Kira is a Black woman. She's on the cover. It's clear when they describe her, she's Black. Her boss is blue and has blond hair. People look all kinds of ways, so race isn't necessarily a thing. They just describe how they look.
Kenrya: In the Realm, there's lots of different worlds, and that's why there's lots of different types of people, because they all come from different worlds and they mix. Kira is part of a caste that is thought of as being lower on the hierarchy within this world.
Erica: So within the Realm, there are castes.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Kenrya: So Kira is in a lower caste, and Gannon, whose last name is Consul, because that's the level that he sits at. It's like his family job. It's like back when people used to be-
Erica: So it's like a ruling class or something?
Kenrya: Kira's last name is Metallurgist, which you hear her refer to herself as at one point when she's telling herself to calm down. So that's her family work or whatever. It's like back in the day when if you were a blacksmith, that was your-
Erica: The Indian's caste system.
Kenrya: No, like in America where back in the day if you were a Blacksmith, that was your last name-
Kenrya: ... because that's what the fuck you did. Exactly. So she has this one person, Tai, who is a family friend who she is in love with. We hear her talking about that. He does actually love her, but he is reluctant to develop anything with her because of the family ties. Then you have Gannon, who she met at work, who clearly wants to have some type of relationship with her. You got to read the book to find out what kind of relationship. So she is struggling even in this scene, even as she is in the act of having sex with the way that she feels about both of these men.
Erica: So what stood out to me first was that this was a forbidden love or a forbidden tryst.
Kenrya: Yeah, in her mind, because they are not of the same caste.
Erica: Yeah. Yeah, and throughout the entire situation, even if she's enjoying it, she's talking herself out of it. She just can't get out of her head to just enjoy what the hell's going on.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Erica: Have you ever had a situation like that?
Kenrya: I think those are two different questions. All right. One of them is have I ever been in a situation that felt forbidden? No. I don't think I have. I have been in situations where I had to ask somebody permission about whether or not I could move forward. I'm a grownup, so I did.
Kenrya: Have I been in situations that I thought was bad for me? Is that the other part?
Erica: Well, not even that was bad for you, but just your... Well yeah, that you had to talk yourself out of, that you wanted to talk yourself out of, or you had to talk yourself through, not even out of, but just through the situation.
Kenrya: Sure, but it was in my 20s, so the talking didn't stick and I ended up going forward with some fuck shit.
Erica: Well, I was going... Before I even answered a question, I was going to put all your business out and say even like this relationship now that you're in, like when you're coming out of a bad or a toxic or dysfunctional relationship and you go onto something new, don't you find yourself even now with your current partner... I roll my eyes because she calls him her partner. That's some total Realm shit, like, "This is my partner. We sync bands."
Erica: But anyway.
Kenrya: No, it is some I don't really fuck with the patriarchy or gender roles or norms, and I don't like the idea of... And I'm grown, so saying I have a boyfriend is dumb.
Erica: Don't yuck my yum, bitch.
Kenrya: To me, sorry.
Erica: No, your little man friend.
Kenrya: As somebody's auntie would say.
Erica: Yeah, your little man friend. But like I think that good, bad, or indifferent, you talk yourself through, "Okay, calm down, self."
Kenrya: Right, "This is not a red flag actually. This is,"-
Erica: Or this is a red flag.
Kenrya: Or it is a red flag and-
Erica: Or this is something, put a note in it. We need to talk about this later to figure out what color flag this is.
Kenrya: Yes. A lot of it I think is me trying to make sure that I'm not falling into old habits and making sure that I am turning a clear eye to my current situation and not letting it be colored by past things, right? It's like when they're going to fuck up, let them fuck up on his own merits, not on somebody else's, right?
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Kenrya: So what works for me is not just talking to myself, which I do talk myself through it, but I also talk to you about it. I talk to my therapist about it, and probably just as importantly is I talk to him about it. So if there's something that makes me feel like, "Huh, okay."
Kenrya: Then I have a conversation with him about it and I ask questions. I don't assume, and I don't keep the conversation internal where shit can lead you to chasing your tail. You know? I ask questions and I try to get it out. So yes, I guess so. What about you?
Erica: I think that... Yeah. I talk to myself all the time, and I find myself quite interesting.
Erica: In the past, I found myself talking myself into or out of a situation, just like, "This ain't right. Don't do it. Don't do it," but post-divorce, particularly early on when I was first just getting my feet wet, well, just getting my pussy wet, well, it stayed wet, but y'all know what I'm talking about.
Kenrya: Whomp, whomp.
Erica: You find yourself in a first... I remember the first situation that I was kind of dealing with. It was a lot of, "Okay, what are you doing? Do you like this? Where are we going with this? How about we not trip about where we're going? How about we just enjoy the fact that he likes to do..."
Erica: So yeah, I found myself talking to myself. But in an act while we're doing the do, yeah, I talk to myself all the time.
Kenrya: Do you?
Erica: Well, no, let me not say that. I hit a point where I talk to myself, and then there's a point where I just shut that off, because it's just like, "Okay, girl, let's..." I think so much of sex and sexual experience is just about being in the moment.
Kenrya: Yeah, being present.
Erica: And enjoying it and being present and just, "How does this hand feel on this titty right now?" As opposed to being like, "The hand is coming to the titty. The hand is coming to the titty. It's coming!."
Kenrya: "Ah, it's here!" Yeah.
Erica: So yeah. Up and to a certain point, I'm talking to myself like, "Okay, girl," because we were talking about in the other episode about how you get to a point where you're having foreplay, doing whatever, it's fun. It's like, "Okay."
Kenrya: "Let's go. Let's go."
Erica: "Let's do it. Stick it in." So I think once I get to the, "Okay, this is fun. Let's,"-
Kenrya: You can shut it off, yeah.
Erica: Yeah, I shut it off and I'm like, "Bow chicka wow wow."
Kenrya: Are you now, just like that?
Erica: Well, it's more of a... Less of a slow and sultry, more of an uptempo kind of situation.
Kenrya: Yeah, little a ditty. So in that vein, I don't have conversations with myself about, "What is this? Where are we going?" Not the greater relationship kind of things. By the time I'm having sex, I'm not thinking about that.
Kenrya: But what trips me up was something that was happening with her. So earlier in the book at some point, she's having sex and she can't cum. So when she was thinking about it with him, that was really a call back to it, because she really has trouble getting there. So she was starting to worry about it in her head, which we know can keep you from actually coming. That is something that I have done to myself before where-
Erica: So fixated on, "Am I going to cum?" That you don't?
Kenrya: Yeah, because I have to focus in on it, right? For it to happen, but it has to really be focused in on, "Okay, this feels like this. Ooh, that feels like that." It can't be, "Ah, fuck, I've been up here doing this little move for 10 minutes. This is usually what makes me cum. This is my guaranteed, and I haven't cum yet. Fuck. Is it going to be another two minutes? Is he going to stay hard in this position? Because this is definitely more for me than it is for him. Do I need to do a little bit of fluffing?" You know what I mean?
Erica: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Kenrya: Then all of that is going through my head, and later, he... It's like my current partner can see it. He'll be like, "Stop. Focus. Focus. Focus."
Erica: Oh my gosh. Oh my gosh. oh my gosh.
Kenrya: Because I will literally be psyching myself out.
Erica: Analyzing that whole situation.
Kenrya: Yes, because I'm worried I'm not going to... What's crazy is I'm not actually that concerned with coming. I very much am the... Yeah, I know. She's looking at me crazy.
Erica: Oh my gosh.
Kenrya: Well no, because I know... Here's the thing. I know I'm always going to cum at some point in some way, right? That's going to happen. But I am okay, if it doesn't happen in the morning session, it'll happen in the evening session. I got a pretty good batting average. But every now and then if it just feels really elusive, I'll get kind of stuck on the treadmill of it all. Yeah.
Erica: Oh yeah.
Kenrya: Yeah, but in general, I am very much of the journey is important to me kind of girl.
Erica: Oh totally.
Kenrya: Yeah, so if I'm having a fucking fantastic journey but I don't fall off the cliff, I'm okay with that, because I'm going to fall off the cliff next time.
Erica: No. No, if I'm having a journey-
Kenrya: No? You need to go off the cliff every time.
Erica: ... and I don't fall off the cliff, once you fall off the cliff, I'm going to push myself off the cliff. I've had multiple times where I've been like, "Okay. I got to finish myself off."
Kenrya: Oh yeah.
Erica: And I did.
Kenrya: I've done that before.
Erica: Oh, I do.
Kenrya: But it's been a while.
Erica: Yeah. Now I'm like, "Look, we..." Well yeah. I try to... Because sex is for us, not just for you or not just for me.
Kenrya: That's right.
Erica: So we both got to finish. Sometimes it might have been sex... A lot of times, you don't... I do cum vaginally most of the time, because I know what to do and how to move you in order to make me cum vaginally, but a lot of times I've cum a couple times off of head before we even get to the in and out part of the situation. So I'm okay with that, if you've made me cum off of head. Then you can get yours. But I refuse to be in a situation where you get yours and I didn't get mine.
Kenrya: See, if I were in a... I'm not saying this is the situation you're in. But if I were in an, "I took this nigga home and we," like a one-off situation, then yes. You're not getting up.
Erica: You were here for a reason.
Erica: Oh, you thought I brought you here for sandwiches? No. No. Uh-uh.
Kenrya: No. No.
Erica: You came home for tacos.
Kenrya: Exactly. But if I'm in a situation where I'm getting it this afternoon, I'm going to get it tonight, I'm going to get it in the morning, I have been known to even forego the penetrative just because, you know what? As I've talked before about I like the control of making a man cum. So we will do the foreplay, and then I will refuse to stop the foreplay and finish the situation. They get to cum. They are also very upset a little bit, because I didn't, and they're a caring partner, but he's extra determined later on.
Erica: Make it happen.
Kenrya: I'm playing the long game.
Erica: You're playing a long game. Okay, okay, okay. I like it.
Kenrya: Yeah, and I like... Because then there's this added build up and anticipation for me for the rest of the day, because I know what's going to happen later on in the day.
Erica: You walk around like, "dink dink dink dink dink dink"
Erica: "He going to put it on me. dink dink dink."
Kenrya: Because he's just a little bit mad because I ignored him and kept going. Yeah. It works really well for me. But then there's also the fact that when I do cum, it's usually several times. So it's not... I ain't got no shortage of orgasms, okay? I am blessed.
Erica: Must be nice. Must be... No, I too. So-
Kenrya: Wait, but that to say, that's me now, and that's me probably for the last, I don't know, the last few years, but me when I was super young, early on in my sexual career, and didn't necessarily always know, like you were saying that you know what angle to put this part in what position, what angle, what's going to help you to get there, I think Kira in this story is very young. So she hasn't gotten... She don't know how her pussy work. She hasn't gotten to the point where she knows what works well for her and how to make that happen. So that is why she is in this situation where she's not cumming. It's because she doesn't really know how to yet.
Erica: Which is why I'd like to take a commercial break and discuss the importance of sex toys.
Kenrya: We were just talking to one of our friends about this.
Erica: I think it's so important for women to...
Kenrya: You got to spend time with yourself.
Erica: Yeah, you got to spend time with yourself. I don't say you have to have toys, but toys are really helpful, because you learn more about yourself and how to do and what to do in order to bring yourself to an orgasm. I think also, I probably, especially as a young woman, probably would have been less likely to jump into fucking some rando-
Kenrya: If you knew that you could get it on your own.
Erica: ... if I knew I could do it myself and how to make it happen. When I orgasmed with guys when I was a little young whipper-snapper, a young tenderoni, well, I wasn't a tenderoni, because I wasn't making myself come. You reach tenderoni status when you can cum at will.
Kenrya: Oh really?
Erica: Yeah. That's in the handbook.
Kenrya: Got you.
Erica: But when I was younger, I just wasn't sure. It would happen and be like, "Oh shit, hey."
Kenrya: Right, you just happened to hit the-
Erica: "Glad you came," you know?
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Erica: "Glad you showed up." But it wasn't like I knew how to make it happen. Then...
Kenrya: Now you get to the point, I know for me, I don't even really finish a song.
Erica: Right? I know how the pre-check-
Kenrya: The button to hit.
Erica: ... in the pre-check lane to Orgasmville.
Erica: I know how to get there immediately. I usually don't hack it unless I'm sleepy and just trying to get to bed, but I think it's so important for us to normalize sex toys and get little vibrator-
Kenrya: And self-pleasure.
Erica: ... or a rabbit or something so that you know, "Maybe I know I need to focus on my clit. Maybe I need to go deeper for the G-spot. This is where the G-spot is. This is the position that the dick has to hit in order to hit my G-spot. All of that. I think it's so important.
Kenrya: Absolutely. You know when you're... What was it? It was fourth grade in my school where they split us up, the boys, the assigned gender, and the folks who are assigned girls, and we're in separate rooms.
Erica: And all we learned about was fucking tampons and pads.
Kenrya: Yes. Yes.
Erica: Teach them about a clit.
Kenrya: Right. Then so fifth grade, we had sex ed and we were all together. We had a question box where you could anonymously ask questions or whatever, but we didn't know what to ask. I remember at one point, or maybe it was in one of those little books that they gave you that were really just shilling for feminine hygiene products, like to try to steer you toward a brand. But I remember they would always tell you, "Take a mirror and look so that you can know where everything is and where it's coming out of."
Erica: Ain't know point in knowing where it is if you don't know what it do.
Kenrya: If you don't know how to... Exactly. So my point is at that point, we should also be talking about pleasure, not just thinking about our vaginas as a source of, "Oh, you're going to have cramps and there's going to be blood."
Erica: Because you would have thought a clit just did not exist.
Kenrya: No, that wasn't part of that, no.
Erica: Do they even show clits in that?
Kenrya: No. They show you the urethra. They show you the vaginal opening, and they show you the anus. That's it, at least back when we learned that shit.
Erica: Yeah, and I'm like-
Kenrya: They just show you the openings, where things go in and come out.
Erica: ... "You missed the party."
Kenrya: Yeah, and the only focus on the fact that things come out of those spaces, right?
Kenrya: They talk about how you have your period. They talk about how babies come out, but they don't say shit about what it means to put things in them in a sex-positive way at all.
Kenrya: I feel like we have to normalize it from really young.
Erica: You'd be amazed the amount of women, grown-ass adult... Because my new thing is I buy young girls vibrators.
Erica: I have a friend whose daughter, shout out to you, I know you're listening.
Kenrya: I know who you're talking about. Hey, girl.
Erica: Who is about to leave for college. I'm like, "She's getting a vibrator from me," because I think it's important for young women to know themselves and know what's going on and feel things out. She was like, "Well, what about me?"
Kenrya: Her mama?
Erica: Yeah. I'm like, "You're a grown-ass woman with two kids. Not to shame you or woo-woo you,"-
Kenrya: I mean, I bought you a vibrator.
Erica: But it wasn't my first.
Kenrya: No. It was just because I thought you would like it. And did you break yours? Is that what happened?
Erica: I was literally going through divorce... What does our therapist call it? I was on a sex sabbatical, like no dating, no flirting, no-
Kenrya: I too was on that sabbatical.
Erica: ... fucking, nothing. I couldn't even flirt with anybody. It was bad. So all I had was my trusty, dusty vibrator. When I tell you that vibrator was dusty, because I went to go grab it, and that bitch was like, "Uh-uh, not today." So Kenrya was kind enough to gift me with a great vibrator.
Kenrya: I was.
Erica: But all that to say please get to know yourself. Get you a good vibrator. You can do a rabbit if you're just trying to do something small, get you a little bullet vibrator, put it to your clit, and I promise you you will see stars in the good way.
Kenrya: But even I think backing up on that as a mom of a girl, and as a mom of a boy too, I think it's really important that we create positive connections with our kids and their genitals. When my kid was born, and folks can take this how they want, but when I would change her diaper, I always had a smile on my face, even if she has shat up her back. Every-
Erica: FYI, godmama did not, but continue.
Kenrya: Even if I had to take off all her clothes because there was poop in her hair, and on my bed, these are all things that happen in real life, I always, even if it smelled awful, which is what happened when she finally started eating real food, I always had a smile on my face. I never wanted her, even from the very young age of one day old, to ever have a negative association with her personal parts. So it, to me, it started there. Then I think people are always surprised at how early kids start to touch themselves, but it starts very early.
Erica: Oh my gosh, and you're never prepared as a parent, but you got to... I remember the first time I found out about mine, and I freaked the fuck out internally.
Kenrya: Did you? Okay.
Erica: Internally. Inside, I was like running and said, "Ooh!"
Kenrya: Why do you think you freaked out?
Erica: Just because this is my baby, and it's like I want him to still be... You associate touching yourself and getting pleasure from your parts with adulthood. So it was one of those-
Kenrya: See, that's part of the shift that has to happen where we don't think of that as just being-
Erica: No, I completely agree, but instinctively as a mom, I was just like, "Oh my god. He's playing with himself. Next thing you know, I'm going to catch a little bitch in his room."
Kenrya: Oh god. Yeah, that's just what it was.
Erica: That's literally what it was. But externally, I was just like, "Hey, kid, take that to your room."
Erica: Because I don't want him to have these weird creepo, these weird associations with I can't pull out my... I don't need him pulling out his dick anywhere, but just you meet people, and they have some of the strangest things, hangups about their body. I don't want him-
Kenrya: Yeah, or a total disconnect from their body.
Erica: Yeah. You don't necessarily need to be the dude like butt naked, full frontal having a conversation about grilling this weekend with a guy in a locker room.
Kenrya: Right, right, his neighbors, right.
Erica: But at the same time, I don't want you being the kid that has to run and hide in the corner when it's time to change shirts in gym.
Kenrya: Change for gym.
Erica: Yeah. Internally, I was having a full meltdown just because I was like, "Ah!" But externally I was like, "Hey, bud, quick flicking it," because it was one of them... You know how they just-
Kenrya: Just touching it. That's-
Erica: Yeah, exactly.
Kenrya: Yeah. Then there's no outcome they're expecting. They're literally just touching it because its theirs and they realize it was there. "Oh, that feels like something."
Erica: Let's be honest, if I had a dick, I would totally... Not even a dick. Balls. I'd probably be late to work playing with them motherfuckers.
Kenrya: Oh my gosh.
Erica: They're just like... I don't know. But then I saw someone on Twitter. This goes completely uncredited. I cannot remember who said it, but someone was like, "If I want to play with balls, I'll just play with my elbows."
Kenrya: Wait. We're both touching our...
Kenrya: Oh shit.
Erica: So yeah.
Kenrya: Yeah. If I stretch it all the way out, it's-
Erica: Yeah, it gets a little doughy, yeah.
Kenrya: That's hilarious. So when I first realized that that was happening, I don't remember an internal... I was just like, "Oh okay, she's touching herself." So we had a conversation. I was like, "Oh, okay." I was like, "Well, that's yours." I was like, "You can touch it as much as you want." I was like, "But," because I think she was in the living room. I was like, "But, so you know how we talked about there are some parts of our body that are just for you and that are private and that nobody else should ever touch unless you give them permission?" I was like, "That really is just me and your doctor." I was like, "That's one of those parts. If you want to touch it, you got this amazing room." I was like, "You can go to your room. You can spend as much time in there as you want to with that." I was like, "It's fun. It's yours. Enjoy." So she went to her room. She was in there for a couple minutes. Then I was like, "Go wash your hands."
Erica: Right. Put some sanitizer on that.
Kenrya: Then she went on back about her business. I have definitely had to remind her over the years to go to her room. She's good about it now, but it works, and if she ever has any discomfort, anything around her vagina, because I was really positive in the way that I reacted to it, she ain't got no problem being like, "Mama, it hurt," or, "Mama," whatever. Then I'm like, "Okay, well maybe you need to give it a little... Have you been touching it?"
Erica: Give it a rest.
Kenrya: Give it a rest. I'm like, "Give it the night, and then in the morning, see how things are feeling." She's like, "Okay." Then she'd go to sleep.
Kenrya: I think it's because I've always been super intentional about making her feel comfortable with her body, all of its parts. So we need to normalize that, I think.
Erica: Yes, we do.
Erica: Something else that we need to normalize, well, I don't know how... Hopefully it's normalized, but this is some fancy, space age pimping going on in this story, particularly in this excerpt, but I like how they stopped to check status.
Kenrya: Yes, well-
Erica: No granted, we're not walking around with it on our iPhones, our iWatches.
Kenrya: Oh, I actually do have it on my phone.
Erica: Well, in your watch, you don't have to scan your watch.
Kenrya: Girl, I ain't got no fancy-
Erica: Exactly. You couldn't do that anyway, but all that to say, it's not like you can just run a stat, like run that information, but I thought it was really cool how this author wrote in something about that, because it's missing from a lot of-
Kenrya: Most of.
Erica: ... most of the stories.
Kenrya: Folks don't pull out condoms, folks don't talk about their status.
Erica: Even ask or something like that. So I think it was really great that she added that that was a part of this story.
Kenrya: Yeah. I just don't like that he was like, "I trust you."
Erica: But it happens.
Kenrya: It absolutely is realistic.
Erica: Yeah, let's not act like it don't happen, yeah.
Kenrya: Yeah, it's realistic as hell. It's just like based on what, my G? You can't-
Erica: So how do you ask? How do you do it?
Kenrya: Very directly, at this point. There was this time where I was getting flewed out to go see somebody who I'd been friends with for years. We had decided that we were going to have sex. I wanted the full compliment of services. So I had my tests. I hadn't had sex since the last time I got testing, and I do actually keep it on my phone, saved as a favorite. I texted it to him and was like, "I want to be able to do all the things. Here are my test results. I need you to get tested and send them to me, and then we can have fun." He said, "Bet, let me call and make an appointment."
Kenrya: Then once he was done, he sent it to me. My current relationship is basically how it usually goes. If I'm with somebody, I'd just be like, "Look," once I get to the point where I do want to be able to do all the things and I trust them and blah blah blah, I literally just say, "Look, I want us to be able to do all the things, but I can't do that unless I know that you're safe. That means that you have to get tested." So they do it. I need to see date stamps. I need all the things, and I am just as forthcoming with my own information. No one's ever asked me to take another test. They've always trusted that I was giving them-
Erica: Once we've done it, we're-
Kenrya: Well no, that I was giving them the most recent information. Oh yeah, no. No, I've never had them... But see, I get tested annually for everything anyway. I remember when I was living in New York, I was in my 20s, and I was going to the doctor. It was just my regular doctor's office. I would have them do blood tests for everything, including HIV. I remember one of the doctors was like, "Well, there are other ways to prevent HIV. You don't need to get tested every year." I was like, "Are you fucking stupid?"
Erica: Really you're supposed to get tested every six months.
Erica: If you're out there doing it like that.
Kenrya: Out there. I was in a committed relationship-
Erica: Not out there, but when you're doing it.
Kenrya: ... but to me, you can have all the... I know firsthand that you can have all the faith and trust in somebody who has committed to you and then find out that that aint' what's shaking. Then you don't know what you got, because you're not getting yourself tested all the time. That has been, since I started having sex, I have gotten tested at least annually for everything, because I just... Yeah. We can be in a committed whatever, and I can trust you, but who knows what the fuck you're doing with your dick when I'm not around? I'm not trying to fuck around and have something pop up that I can't get rid of or have long-term consequences like PID and infertility or any of these things because I decided that I want to completely take your word on the fact that nothing was going on.
Erica: All right.
Kenrya: What about you? How do you ask?
Erica: Yeah, I don't think I ask. I just like you, I just do. No, I don't. I guess I could access my test results through my phone, but I certainly don't keep it saved as a favorite.
Kenrya: It's just a screenshot of LabCorp.
Erica: Yeah, yeah. I guess I could. But yeah. I say, "Hey, I got tested recently," or I do testing every six months. I do annually with my doctor, and then usually-
Kenrya: Go to Planned Parenthood or something?
Erica: Yeah, usually Planned Parenthood. Well, not even Planned Parenthood. I go back to my doctor, because they're really good about just quick checks, or I hit up the Patient First.
Kenrya: Oh, I've never done that there. That's a good idea.
Erica: They do everything at Patient First urgent care.
Kenrya: That's so much faster than Planned Parenthood. Ooh, you're smart, bitch.
Erica: Yeah. So I say, "Hey, these are my recent test results. Let me see yours." Then we go from there. But it used to be difficult. It used to be not a sexy conversation, but now it's an even more... It's still not a sexy conversation, but when you're prepared, I'm like, "Oh, you're really about to get this pussy, because you know what you're doing. You take care of yourself."
Kenrya: Yeah, I that's a turn on. We grown. I don't feel like I should have to beat around a bush about whether or not you're healthy and I'm healthy and we can do this. I think part of it too is that I do usually frame it in the context of I want to be able to do all the things. That is exactly why it's important to me. Beyond the fact that of course we know that condoms don't protect from everything and whatnot, and even then, in some cases, there will still be times when we will use condoms, even though we have done the testing thing. It doesn't necessarily preclude from that, but it definitely makes me feel more at ease when it comes to oral sex and things like that.
Erica: Swapping juices.
Kenrya: Fluids. Exactly. I have to have that before I do it, because I'm not interested in taking nothing home.
Erica: Sitting in the doctor's office. Yeah.
Erica: Okay. So now down to the nitty-gritty of this, the actual sex. Honey, so I like a big guy. We know that, right?
Kenrya: Oh yeah.
Erica: It's very clear. I will entertain the smaller brethren.
Kenrya: Will you?
Erica: I have. I have.
Kenrya: Oh yeah, yeah, yeah.
Erica: I have.
Kenrya: I see a few in my head. I see a few in my head.
Erica: Yeah, but I like a big guy, primarily because I like to be manhandled. I like to be picked up and tossed around. When he picked her up, I was like, "Well, Murder, She Wrote, because you about to murder this pussy."
Kenrya: Yes. That was cool, and you know me, when she moved her hands after he told her not to and he slapped her thigh-
Erica: I was going to say, I have a note right here, knowing to give directions, so sexy.
Erica: Because it's one of those things, you have to feel it out. Not every woman is into pain or that element. So even bigger than the slapping her on the thigh, it was just like they were feeling it out, and he knew... Not even that he knew, but he was able to kind of test the waters and see how she responded.
Kenrya: Right, in a way that wasn't over the top or wouldn't freak her out.
Erica: And she's still young in this, so it's not like he slapped her on the thigh and threw a collar around her neck, but it was just enough restriction and rules to kind of surprise herself, but keep it going. Like woo.
Kenrya: Yeah, when she was surprised that it actually... Yeah, that it worked for her, that she liked it.
Erica: That's how I felt. I know you're a nipple gal, but that's how I felt the first time I had my nipples pinched hard. I was like-
Kenrya: "Oh, what?"
Erica: ... "Wait, whoa." It was like, "Wow, that happens? Ooh, that really does that?"
Kenrya: Yeah, for some people. Yeah.
Erica: Yeah. So I thought that was really cool, just how he was so good at kind of nudging her towards the direction.
Kenrya: Yeah. No, it was good, and she followed, which is not always easy to do, especially if that's not what you're used to doing.
Erica: If that's not your thing.
Kenrya: Yeah, and it pushed her over.
Erica: Yes, it did. So once she got over, they made it to the mountain top, they sitting, looking on the side of the rock at all the land that they've conquered, enjoying themselves.
Kenrya: Surveying their spoils.
Erica: Surveying what happened. Her ass start talking.
Kenrya: This bitch.
Erica: And fucked it up.
Kenrya: She said, "Thank you." But beyond that, she said, "Yeah, I'm sure there's folks all over the Realm that have experienced that."
Erica: Yeah, and I know that was her doing it... I think that was her talking out loud, talking herself down of, "This isn't what I think it is or what I want it to be."
Kenrya: Yes, "Calm down, bitch. It's fine. He doing this to everybody. You're not special. Don't treat him like he's special."
Erica: So have you had a situation where you've talked yourself out of seconds?
Kenrya: No. I'm greedy.
Erica: So you've never been and had a good time and then said something that completely killed the mood?
Kenrya: No. Not that I can think of.
Erica: Yeah. This bitch told me about how a fucking transformer blew up out her window last night and they kept fucking, so I don't think there's much that kills the mood.
Kenrya: Yeah. I mean I did get up, but then I got back down.
Erica: So has anyone said anything to you post sex that have talked about a-
Kenrya: Oh sorry, I'm seeing that whole scene last night. Ooh, that made me not want to do it again?
Erica: That was just like, "You know what? You was about to get some more head. Now your ass got to go home."
Kenrya: There was the guy who I talked about in another episode who complained about how wet it was to give me head.
Erica: He said that post sex, like you all laying there naked?
Kenrya: It was when we were switching positions from him giving me head.
Kenrya: He was like, "It's just so messy. We got to wipe up and all of this." I'm like-
Erica: You don't wipe up. You just keep going.
Kenrya: Hello? I was like, "So what, you don't want to do it?" He was like, "Nah, it's too messy." So I was like, "Bet, I'm not sucking your dick no more." I literally just said that. It was as we were transitioning.
Erica: Oh my god.
Kenrya: So he talked himself out of ever having head again from me, because I never did it again.
Erica: Yeah. Note to men. A lot of times you can get so much farther if you just shut up.
Kenrya: Shut the fuck up.
Erica: Just shut up. If you don't know what to say or if you're not sure if it's going to be corny-
Kenrya: Don't say nothing.
Erica: ... just don't say nothing, because she going to make up some shit that you're saying in your mind that's probably sexier than anything you could say.
Kenrya: She's giving you all kinds of grace.
Erica: Yeah, she probably said the most specific shit that you would have never thought of in a million years, but it hits her right in that button, and she's like a waterfall. So if you're unsure, just don't say shit.
Kenrya: Just don't say nothing.
Erica: Because it's easier to talk yourself out of some pussy than it is to talk yourself into some pussy.
Kenrya: Yeah. Has anyone ever done that to you or have you ever?
Erica: Oh, I'm queen of some weird shit to say after sex.
Kenrya: Ooh, like what?
Erica: Like you know me and, "Meep, moop, I am a robot dinosaur." Call back to episode one or whatever. Let me think. Yeah, I'm the nigga that could talk myself out of some dick. Well no, I couldn't. Men are-
Kenrya: Men are simple.
Erica: Men are simple.
Kenrya: "We love you though."
Erica: "We love you though." Bringing up old shit. I'm quick to be like, "Whew, you really murdered that pussy. Now who was that bitch you was in the store with?" "You mean my cousin?" No, I'd be like, "Who that dusty-ass ho you was in the store with?" He'd be like, "You mean my mama? You calling my mama a dusty ho?" "Ooh, my bad. Let me just go home." I've definitely probably done something equivalent to that. I can't think of specifics, but I know for a fact that I have killed a mood or two in my day.
Erica: With regard to someone saying something that would kill a mood or something being done? I can't... Oh shit, I haven't asked questions that-
Kenrya: You ain't got an answer to.
Erica: I haven't thought about answers for myself.
Kenrya: Well, hmm. Okay. I got one, kind of, while you think. I was having sex with this dude-
Erica: I can't think of this... Sorry. Keep going.
Kenrya: Bitch, multitask. It seemed to me, which is what I said out loud after, that he was trying to hurt me, but not in a good way. Like in a his shit was fucked up, and it's not like we had a conversation about boundaries or anything like that. But the position that he kept trying to put me in was like... It was the only position he wanted to have sex in. It was like if I scream, that was like getting him really... I said after, I was like, "You know, it really felt like you were trying to hurt me." He just kind of froze, which is how I knew I was fucking right. Then that dude ghosted me.
Kenrya: Yeah, like I think-
Erica: He's like, "I can't abuse her."
Kenrya: Yeah. Like I caught... You can be into BDSM and you can be a masochist and all of this stuff and have... You should be having conversations with the people that you're with and be honest about what you want and what gets you off, and if you have a consenting partner, that shit can work. But to me, it felt super dishonest.
Erica: He likes the unconsented part.
Erica: He likes the unconsented part. That's what gets him off.
Kenrya: That's what gets him off. Exactly. So I feel like it wasn't that I said anything wrong. I think that that was exactly what I should have said and was absolutely what I wanted to say, but I do believe that that's the reason that he disappeared, because I had called him on his shit.
Erica: Yeah, because let's be clear. I think if it's possible to say something and completely dead it, a lot of times, I'm not going to say all the time, but a lot of times you're like... If you're able to say something-
Kenrya: You got one foot in and one foot out anyway.
Erica: Yeah, if you're able to say something, if you're able to say one thing that can kill everything, it's like, "Y'all wasn't really right."
Kenrya: That wasn't shit anyway.
Erica: Because even if I say something out-of-pocket, if you're-
Kenrya: The right person is laughing at your dumb ass.
Erica: Yeah, like, "This dumb robot dinosaur-ass chick."
Erica: Yeah, but I can't think of any... Again, I've had a long and storied past. I'll let you all know if there was something that was said. I feel like there is, but I can't come to mind of anything where something was said to me that was like-
Erica: ... "Hey, bitch." I mean, yeah, because I get all those questions out of the way up front early on. I remember I was on a date with a guy, and I don't know why, but I got the feeling that he had someone.
Kenrya: Was just your spidey sense, your intuition was telling you, yeah.
Erica: My spidey senses. I was like, "Are you dating someone or do you have a girlfriend?" He was like, "No." I was like, "Well, is there someone that would be upset that,"-
Kenrya: "That you were here with me right now?"
Erica: ... "that you told me,"-
Kenrya: That's the way I ask that question, yeah.
Erica: ... "that you told me that you don't have someone?"
Erica: I said, "All right." Yeah, so thankfully I got that out of the way, because he definitely was going to get some pussy, but I got that out the way and got...
Kenrya: I ask that question, and I always say, "Is there somebody who would be upset that you're with me right now?" Because saying girlfriend or whatever the fuck, they lie. They're going to lie anyway, but I feel like that one, ooh, sometimes at least gets to the heart of the matter or they react in such a way, like in your situation, that you can tell.
Kenrya: Where they reveal all.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Erica: So in the bigger book, what's the lead? The protagonist?
Kenrya: Protagonist? Yes.
Erica: The lead actress. The protagonist, Kira, is caught in a love triangle of sorts. She's torn between two.
Erica: Uh-uh, (singing)
Kenrya: What are you singing? What are you singing?
Erica: "I'm In Love With Another Man", Jasmine Sullivan.
Kenrya: I don't know that song.
Erica: It is... Oh, bitch, I be in my car singing hard.
Erica: (singing) I'm sorry, you all. I'm so sorry, I got to listen to that. Ooh, I love me some Jasmine Sullivan. Anyway, so she's on some "I'm in Love With Another Man" shit. That's some juicy shit that I'd like when I tell you I'm running from that kind of drama, but have you ever been in a caught between two?
Kenrya: No. I have been in a, "I am firmly over here, but I am what-iffing the fuck out of this other situation," situation.
Kenrya: Bitch, you know this. Hunker down. I have definitely, yes, where I was firmly in a committed relationship, but there was a...
Erica: Oh yeah, now I got it. I got it. Uh-huh.
Kenrya: A past situation where it ended not on bad terms.
Erica: It just ended.
Kenrya: It ended because of logistics and whatever. So there was always kind of in the back of my head a "what if that had actually worked out?" Kind of a situation. But it definitely wasn't an, "I'm torn between." It was just like, "Okay, if I'm ever free, then I'll try it. If I'm not, then I'm not, because I'm right over here." So no, I've never felt torn between two people, because I'm very much like... I guess it still kind of holds true, although now it's much more intentional, but my cycle was always when I was younger, dating, I would date a whole bunch of people and then very quickly narrow it down to somebody and then keep it moving. It was always way too quickly, as my history will show.
Kenrya: Then once I came off of my man sabbatical, I was very intentionally dating at least three people at a time, very openly and honestly, so that I would give each one the correct amount of consideration as I was trying to figure out if I wanted to spend extended time with any of those people. But it always would narrow down or, honestly, more often than not, I would just talking to all of them, because none of them were really a good match for me. But no, I don't think I ever have, have you?
Erica: No. I'm the type of person when I decide to rock with you, then-
Kenrya: You with them.
Erica: ... just everything else cuts off.
Erica: Yeah. I used to think that shit was romantic and, "Ooh, you're caught between two people." Now I'm like, "That shit just sounds like a fucking headache."
Kenrya: That sounds like... Ugh, yeah. It really does.
Erica: I don't understand it. I don't want to have to... It's hard enough for me to care about one person, let alone multiple people, which is what we'll get into when we discuss polyamory, because honey, I'm trying to be considerate. It takes a lot-
Kenrya: It does. That's why I think-
Erica: ... for me to be considerate of one other person's emotions.
Kenrya: Yeah. We're obviously not talking about that now, but that's why I think the people how think, "Oh, it's for people who don't want to commit," I'm like, "No, it's quite the opposite of that, it seems to me."
Erica: No, it takes a next level commitment to care about two people.
Kenrya: Mm-hmm (affirmative), or more.
Erica: yeah. I feel like all our polyamorous listeners, you all have super evolved.
Kenrya: Right. Hats off, shit.
Erica: Yeah, because this wraps up this week's episode of the Turn On.
Erica: Once again, we did it.
Kenrya: We did.
Erica: We made it past the finish line.
Kenrya: It was fun.
Erica: We are on the top of the rock.
Kenrya: We went over the cliff.
Erica: Surveying all the damage that we've done.
Erica: All the goodness.
Erica: We're looking upon a sea of dildos and happy faces.
Kenrya: I like it.
Erica: So thank you for joining us again. These are your hosts, your lovely hosts Erica-
Kenrya: Erica and Kenrya.
Erica: We are two hoes making it clap.
Kenrya: Making it clap.
Erica: This week's episode was produced by us, Erica, Easy E, and Killer Ken, and edited by B'Lystic. The theme song is from Brazy. Please subscribe to this show on your favorite podcast app. Follow us on Twitter @theturnonpod and Instagram @theturnonpodcast and find links to books, transcripts, guest info, and other fun stuff at theturnonpodcast.com. Holla.
The Turn On
The Turn On is a podcast for Black people who want to get off. To open their mines. To learn. To be part of a community. To show that we love and fuck too, and it doesn't have to be political or scandalous or dirty. Unless we want it to be.