phantom canyon: part one (fiction)

This is the first part of two. A fiction piece I’ve been working on lately, but haven’t been able to finish. Maybe posting this part will help me stick the landing…


It’s a dense woods on the side of a mountain, blanketed in aspen, sloping down to a canyon below. A road runs through it, dirt packed into bumps and ripples, a public route, though only occasionally traveled.

Jameson drives us far along this canyon road, well up the mountain. At a pull-off he parks the truck. The road is some forty miles up one side and down the other. We aren’t yet at the crest, but near to it.

He leads me by my leash to a massive boulder with a flat-angled facing, which he has me lean against. He drops the leash, it clinks against the rock, and Jameson returns to the truck.

This forest is stunning, the white tree trunks rising up to heaven. The rustle of leaves seems a new kind of quiet, a soft noise that becomes a hush.

Jameson has fetched a camera and a tripod. He sets up the tripod about twenty feet from me, and mounts the camera.

I can’t help but laugh because he has confessed before that he doesn’t know much about cameras, maybe the one mechanical thing in the world he isn’t good at. I even doubt that the camera works, but for his purposes that doesn’t matter.

He hears my laugh, grins at me, and says, “You’ll pay for that.”

“I know.”

He walks to my side, and leans against the boulder. His arm comes around me in back, and his hand rises up behind to span my neck and collar. It seems symbolic of things between us, a gesture both protective and possessive at the same time.

He checks the solid hold of the spring clasp connecting my chain leash to my collar.

“Afraid I’ll get away?” I tease.

He chuckles, says nothing, and tinkers some more. It’s just what he does — he plays with hardware and the flesh of this girl, hard and soft together.

He’s up again, now rummaging through a steel tool chest in the back bed on the truck. I wish he would sit still, allow himself to breathe in the crisp mountain air, watch the sun filter through the aspen in slats and beams.

Returning, he produces a huge Yale lock the size of Montana. He hangs it off of my O-ring in front and locks it. I feel the weight of it tug my neck forward and feel like I have to fight its pull.

A car drives by, reminding that this place may be remote but it’s still public. The road itself makes it hard for a car to do more than thirty-five, and often you have to take it much slower. This car, a middle-age couple in an SUV, slows even more while passing us, looking at me, looking at Jameson’s camera and tripod. They drive on.

He reels in my leash and takes the other end as his eyes scan our landscape. He wants to attach me to something. I think he wishes there was a large eye bolt screwed into the side of the boulder, something he could chain me to.

“Take off your dress,” he says.

I figured it was coming to this, and it doesn’t surprise me. I look into his eyes as I reach for the top button of my shirt dress. For better or worse, it’s my nature to passively submit, but I know as well this is how he likes me — quietly obedient. And maybe it’s why he likes me. My hushed acquiescence without protest is peaceful to him, relaxes him. It occurs to me that while I find peace being in the calming nature of the wilderness, he finds peace in the calming nature of me.

My buttons are undone and I continue to look into his eyes as I pull the bodice open, and loop the dress over one shoulder then the other. I slide it over my breasts and to my waist.

Early on, when I knew I would be this way with him and it would be like this, he had me look into his eyes during such things. That way, he said, I would not be distracted by what or who was around me, focused not on my shame and only on my obedience. It was later that this became unnecessary — while I still felt the shame, I endured it, and in a way it no longer mattered. Yet I still looked into his eyes, as I do now, perhaps from habit, more likely to watch his glistening lust for me.

From ten feet away, he eyes my breasts, my orbs of pale flesh striped by shards of sunlight.

I push my dress over my hips and down my legs. I lean over to gather the dress before hit hits the ground, stepping out of it and draping it over my arm in one fluid motion, as if undressing in the forest was something I did every day.

Now I am wearing only my metal slave collar and my wedge sandals. I breathe in as Jameson absorbs my femininity — my naked teats and my soft folds below — now suddenly presented in a landscape of rough tree bark and hard boulders.

He has his visual moment with me, his eyes lingering, fucking me.

He takes my dress from my arm and lays it on the passenger seat of the truck, leaving the door open and my dress draping down, empty of me.

Jameson takes my leash and walks me to the edge of the pull-off where a wedge of forest begins again. He loops my leash around the trunk of an aspen, fastens it, chaining me there. The leash chain hangs from my collar to the tree in a “U” that doesn’t quite touch the ground.

All day he has been attaching me to things. It seems an obsession for him, something deep within him tinkering and playing.

Being leashed and chained, of course, often makes me feel like a dog, a pet cared for, yet kept tamed and chained. However, I often feel that my leashed identity is actually less animate, that I am more of a thing, an object, than a creature. My leash chain is a holder. My attachment is simply a place he stores me for a while.

I am important to him, but only when I am important to him. Like a set of car keys placed on the kitchen hook. Like a mechanic’s tool he won’t use till next time. At times he sets me aside. At times he attaches me to a tree.

Jameson leaves me, walking down the road. He rounds the bend, and I can no longer see him. I feel alone, set aside.

I hear a car approaching from the north, its tires crunching the gravelly road.

I stand naked and still, my pale flesh like the bark of an aspen sapling exposed at the edge of the woods. My hands are free, and if I wished, I could unhook my chain from the tree and hide. He doesn’t want me to do so, of course.

He has made like he’s gone for a hike, but I wonder if he’s circled around and is watching me from some stand in the deeper forest.

The car rolls through. It slows but passes. If it had come from the south, the driver would surely have seen me. But this forest edge is an alcove of sorts, an inset shielded from cars coming from the north, like this car. The driver could have spotted me through the rear-view mirror, perhaps why it slowed. Maybe.

In time, I hear Jameson’s heavy boots trudge up from the road. He says something about the creek below. He wants to walk me there.

He removes my leash, taking me by hand across the road through the aspen on the other side. Slender twigs hang down and slide across my naked breasts; crisp leaves on the forest bed crunch under my sandals and sometimes prickle the open tops of my feet. It is as if the forest is reaching out, touching me, trying to make sense of my presence, so soft and round and warm, in its crackly midst.

It isn’t far, the only challenge being a steep section from the forest edge down to the creek. He has me jump to him those few feet, and he catches me in his arms.

It is a narrow creek but with a strong flow of water, and it sings a melody of rushes and ripples. To the north, the creek widens and the trees fade back, allowing the sun to shine fully on my bare flesh, its rays warming my breasts and my thighs. Jameson walks along the creek bed, as if he is exploring, but I know better. Sure enough, he stops fifty yards upstream and turns to look back. I grant him his gaze, remaining still. It’s a full minute, maybe more, a moment for him to take in my feminine nature framed by mother nature.

I dare to step into the water, letting it cascade over my sandaled feet, but it’s freezing, and I shriek, jumping back, my breasts jiggling as I stumble a bit, but somehow I regain my footing. I laugh, exclaiming, “Oh my god!”

I hear Jameson laugh too, like an echo.

The point of all this, it eventually becomes clear to me, is that there is no point. Which is lovely.


More to come…

3 thoughts on “phantom canyon: part one (fiction)

  1. I was once in the Colorado mountains in September, saw aspen its color up the valley sides. It was beautiful. Now you have painted this picture, and I remember. Can’t wait for the sequel.

    Liked by 1 person

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