It was going to be a large fireworks display. Hundreds of people milled about buying drinks and food from the many stalls around the arena. At one side a railing marked the edge of the arena and beyond that lay a large open space. The far side of that space held some fireworks arranged ready to be set off and to one side a large pile of wood and bric-a-brac which formed what would be the bonfire.
Eventually a dark shape moved in the gloom and the bonfire sprang into life, a huge glowing and crackling pile of debris. It was too far away to feel the heat from it although it cast a beautiful light across the field.
Rowena took Matthew’s hand, “come with me”, she insisted.
The two of them walked away from the railing, and away from the arena towards the car park. Packed full of cars it was empty of people as everybody thronged the arena. From there they found the fence surrounding the site with trees growing in front of it along its length.
Rowena led her boy, her heart thumping, along the fence back towards the field. There was no one around as they squeezed past the fencing meant to mark the edge of the area where the public were allowed. Their clothes were dark and they were easily lost in the shadows. Skulking behind the trees they continued around the edge of the field towards the bonfire until it stood between them and the crowd. The heat from the fire was fiercely intense at this short distance.
“Strip”, Rowena ordered Matthew quickly.
He looked hesitant for a moment, but a look at his mistress’ eyes in the firelight convinced him that she was serious and he undressed quickly. Neatly he folded his clothes in a pile on the ground, ready to be put on quickly if necessary.
Rowena turned away drawing a pen knife from her pocket and cutting a switch from a low branch of the trees which they stood under. She laid it down on the ground for a moment.
Ordering Matthew to come and stand by the fence she drew some short lengths of rope from her pocket and bound his wrists to it, wrapping the rope around the posts. He shivered slightly, the roughness of the fence against his chest, and the fire’s heat against his back.
Rowena stepped back to admire the beauty of this man bound naked before her, then looking back at the fire, still shielding them from the view of the crowd.
She picked up the switch. It whistled through the air, and Mat gasped as it struck him. It left a neat red line across his buttocks, almost glowing in the orange light. The fire crackled noisily and the hum of the distant crowd could be heard behind it.
Rowena raised the switch again. Matthew struggled slightly, testing the rope around his wrists as the blows fell.
He became lost in the moment; the pain, the warmth of the fire, the rope holding him in place and the ceaseless crackle of the fire became his universe.
Suddenly his universe expanded; a new noise, a whizzing that filled the air followed by a huge bang, and a gasp from the remote crowd. Rowena glanced round, the fireworks had begun. She whipped him once again, watching his body twitch in response to both her blows and the fireworks’ explosions.
Then before the bonfire burned too low she turned away and tossed the switch onto the fire watching it crackle furiously as the flames licked at it. Turning back, she untied Matthew from the fence, and he quickly slipped back into his clothes. Together they hurried back under the trees to return to the arena.
As the fireworks continued to fill the sky with glorious patterns of light they stood among the crowd; arms around each other, heads back, looking into the sky. They had made their own kind of fireworks tonight.