If you are new to the Mistress storyverse, welcome! Trinity and Graciela’s adventures began in Fire of Desire, a free Mira and Hana serial available on Governing Ana for a limited time only. You may remember Mira from Desire in Any Language or Mira’s Miracle, tales of a young woman discovering her sexuality and kink while studying abroad in Korea. She meets the Japanese diplomat, Hana Takahashi, who introduces her naughty love.
On their visit to a BDSM resort, Hana and Mira meet Nurse Trinity, who coddles and spanks Mira like the naughty girl she needs to be. After a rocky start, the three promise to keep in touch.
Unfortunately, things don’t go as well at their next meeting. Trinity seeks help from her former lover and Domme, Graciela. Graciela rules with an iron fist, and Trinity struggles with the changes in her life.
Trinity and Graciela’s adventures are available in the first two books, Mistress on Her Knees and Mistress, Please (coming soon!). Today, we begin the long-awaited Mistress’s Release, book three.
“Dah-lee. Dee-goot.” Rachel takes the pink mechanical pencil with its dangling strawberry attachment, and she draws an angular letter C on the paper in front of me. The columns of oversized boxes show dotted lines that I am supposed to trace, the way I taught my school-aged Littles to practice their letters. I, Nurse Trinity who used to command my dominion, obediently follow instructions.
“This is the letter d? Duh?” I accept the pencil and trace the letters in the six boxes, quickly and accurately. “Dah-lee is knee?” The tiny sketch of a leg shows an arrow pointing to the knee, but Rachel shakes her head.
“Dah-lee.” She pats her own knee. “Leg.”
It’s the Korean version of “C is for Cat,” but I’m confused. “Hip” in Koreanized English means “buttocks,” and I can’t understand why. Rachel uses American slang terms she’s heard on imported sitcoms, but she pronounces “hot” with the arched sound of the British.
It’s a funny land of contradictions, Korea.
“Dah-lee,” I repeat, copying the shapes. “Leg.” I’ll ask Graciela later why leg and knee seem to be interchangeable. I glance at the clock. “Isn’t it time for English yet?”
“Yay!” I stretch out my cramped thumb and forefinger and reach for the English newspaper I’ve brought with me, but Rachel pats the child’s notebook in front of me.
“Yes, it is not time for English. Three weeks you come to me, but you still don’t know hangul. Cha, we will do lee-ul. La-dee-oh. Lee-bon.”
Radio. Ribbon. The squared-off number two represents a sound in between the letters r and l, and I have to write them in the strange new alphabet. I’d rather ask Rachel to read out loud from today’s English paper, but she gets self-conscious. She takes out new supplies for me every time I visit, books and games and toys her children used years ago. In the six times I’ve visited her, I’ve only gotten to help her with English once. She always has a pressing reason why I must learn Korean.
It’s no wonder that Rachel’s daughter is at the top of her class and studying for entrance exams to a prestigious private high school. I’d think a mom that devoted wouldn’t have time for a stranger, but she breaks into a smile whenever she opens the door. Today, she turns the page and points for me to start on a new set of exercises. “Cha,” she repeats, an all-purpose word for instructions. She says a few more words in Korean that must mean “Do this” or “Work hard,” and I catch the word “kongboo” that means study. I should know that one, as she has said it to me often enough.
“I thought I’d get to teach you English,” I complain, but she waves away my protest.
“Kongboo!” She disappears into the kitchen, and soon the crackling of oil in a hot pan announces the preparation of a new treat. Rachel has expanded my repertoire of Korean food, and in exchange she asks for nothing.
I stretch my arms above my head, untucking my crossed legs. Graciela tells me it’s rude to sit with my feet sticking straight out, but I can’t sit on the floor as long as she does. While Rachel has a small table in her kitchen, she prefers for us to study while sitting on the living room floor. Thank goodness I can lean against their leather couch. Whenever she cooks, I stretch my legs underneath the little floor table we use instead of a desk.
Her head pops around the corner. “Why?”
It’s another oddity, “Why?” instead of “What?” when hearing her name. I didn’t mean to call her, though. “Rachel. That’s a lee-ul too, right? Lay-chul?” I imitate how she says her own name.
“So smart!” She comes to kneel beside the table, drying her hands on her red apron and taking the pen. She draws three patterns, speaking each one out loud. “Lay. Ee. Chul.” The “Ra” of Rachel, in her pronunciation, draws out over two syllables.
“Thanks,” I say, taking the pencil back. I want to copy her name, but she shakes her head.
“Tuh-leen-ee-tee.” The same boxy number two appears in a new set of drawings, only this time she nods toward me.
She nods, and I stare down at the paper. It’s me, in black and white. Maybe, just maybe, I do belong in this strange new country where no one can say my name.
She takes my hand as if I were a kindergartener, closing her delicate fingers around my knobby ones. She guides each stroke, saying the syllables out loud.
“Trinity,” I repeat, willing myself to remember. No matter where I’ve been, and no matter what problems I face, I’m still me. Trinity.