The Fetish. Flash fiction: prompt is curious & guilty pleasures.

They were words to freeze a girls heart.

“I have a fetish for tonight.” read Philip’s text.

Oh God, thought Stephanie. A fetish? Philip? Philip had a fetish?Philip?!?

He was the most normal bloke she’d ever met. He was ultra normal. She’d never seen a man who wore such practical clothing or who kept a torch in his bag ‘just in case’

“Just in case of what?” she’d asked that morning she’d discovered it.
“A power cut or if I get lost in the dark or if there’s a dark cupboard I need to find something in.”

Oh God the torch wasn’t part of whatever it was? Stephanie pressed her knees together.

She stared down at those few words on the screen, her fingers hovering above the touch pad.

What could it be? I mean she loved Philip, she loved him a lot.
He was kind and sweet, he held doors open for her, offered to pay the bill every time they went out for dinner. He was a nice guy.
But even for nice guys there were places Stephanie would not go.

She would not be peed on. That was a definite. Even if she could have a shower immediately afterwards. Because nobody wanted to be the someone that got weed on

It was undignified. What was the suitable expression to hold whilst someone weed on you? Bubbly delight? Aroused?

Stephanie was sure she couldn’t manage anything but a wrinkled nose disgust.

S&M? Did Philip want her to beat him with a cane? It seemed unlikely given all the fuss he’d made that time he banged his knees on her coffee table.

Oh God? Did he want to beat her? She blamed Fifty Shades if that was the case. There were millions of bemused husbands and partners who thought their wives needed blindfolds and handcuffs and all that Ann Summers rubbish.

What was wrong with a good, hard shag performed the standard way?
Her fingers hovered nearer to the keys.

Or maybe it wasn’t anything to do with her at all?

Maybe it was an object. Like shoes? Maybe Philip wanted to caress her shoes or sniff them. She’d be fine with that. Stephanie possessed many pairs of kick ass shoes whose inclusion in Philip’s pleasures might help justify the price she’d paid for them.

Or maybe he liked to dress up? In a g string and fishnets perhaps. Stephanie tried to picture Philip in such a guise. And failed.

He was just so ordinary, so Philip. He was the most unlikely man ever to possess a fetish.

She hit reply, typing ‘?’
Then sat back and waited for a reply.

It could be something good. Something fun. She shouldn’t be so closed mind about these things. Maybe trying something new would do wonders for their sex life. Not that there was anything unsatisfactory about it. Far from it. But still. If it was something Philip wanted to try, then there was no harm in that trying. And if she didn’t like it. Well they’d not try it again.

Her phone buzzed. Stephanie stared at the screen. It read.

“oh God. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry. Bloody autocorrect! I meant feta. I have a feta cheese for the salad tonight. What must you think of me.”

Let’s Talk About Sex (ba-by)

Sex features a lot in my books, a fact I only realised after Mr LJ helpfully totted up the number of ‘scenes of a sexual nature’ (as the announcers on the BBC say) in Palatine.

Err there was quite a lot.

So why so many?



No, I’m not sex obsessed. I have two small children, if anything I’m sleep obsessed. I positively drool at the thought of a solid 8 hours kip.

Roman society’s attitude to sex and sexuality are interesting to explore. This is a non Christian society, there are no Ten commandments, no sin. This doesn’t make it necessarily a more permissive society than our own modern one but it does mean that they have different rules and norms to us. And personally I find that fascinating.

Wandering round Pompeii you are well aware of this difference what with the lucky penis shapes carved into walls and the pavement, the explicit frescoes demonstrating a variety of sexual positions and acts, not to mention the err quite graphic graffiti.

“Theophilus, don’t perform oral sex on girls against the city wall like a dog”

“Weep, you girls. My penis has given you up. Now it penetrates men’s behinds. Goodbye, wondrous femininity!”

Being two such examples.

People talked about sex, they joked about sex, they scrawled their exploits onto walls.Or for the higher born like Catullus and Martial they wrote poetry about it.

“Stay at home, and get ready
for nine fucks, in succession, with me.
Truly, if you should want it, let me know now:
because lying here, fed, and indolently full,
I’m making a hole in my tunic and cloak”

“Lesbia swears she’s never been fucked for free.
True. When she wants to be fucked, she has to pay.”

And these are two of the tamer examples of their work.



Even imperial biographers such as Suetonius can’t resist listing ala the poets just who was doing what to who.
For the record
Augustus with Julius Caesar and virgins who’d been especially rounded up for him to deflower.
Tiberius with various slave boys and he was fond of cunninglingus
Caligula with everyone
Claudius only with women (a situation Suetonius thinks is worth stressing)
Nero with his freedmen both passive and active role and with his mother.

And that’s just the Julio Claudians
So I think my conclusion is that I’m not sex obsessed it’s all those Romans who are.