Monday, February 18, 2008

Men In Chains

By Deanna Ashford

I have a confession to make, I love musical theatre. There is nothing better than going to a great show with brilliant songs and coming out afterwards in an ebullient mood humming these songs to yourself. I say humming because I can’t sing, I never have been able to sing and anything over and above humming, according to my family, would be considered a mortal sin.

Now you all ask, why on earth would my love of musical theatre have anything to do with Lustbites, and erotic writing let alone the title of my post Men In Chains. Amazingly enough it has because it was musical theatre that first made me realise how much of a turn on a seeing a semi-naked chained man was. I have consequently discovered it is not just a turn on for me but for many other members of the female population. And I suppose some of the male population depending in which direction their desires lie.

It all started one evening when I was sitting in the theatre watching of all things the new West End production of Joseph. Now here I must explain to the uninitiated among you that Joseph is sold into slavery by his brothers, because they are jealous of him. Once he arrives as a slave in Egypt, he appears on stage wearing nothing but a loin cloth.

Even if you didn’t watch the reality TV programme Any Dream Will Do, I’m sure that many of you will know that the guy playing Joseph is the well deserved winner of that programme, Lee. Not only is he a good looking guy with a great voice, he has a very tasty physique as well and the producers of the show have clearly taken advantage of this by dressing him in a very scanty loincloth that shows off his nicely developed pecs and muscular legs to perfection.

During the first half of the show I’d been hearing the lady sitting next to me uttering soft sighs every time Lee appear on stage. It was at this point that she must have overheard a comment I made to the friends who accompanied me and she gathered, quite correctly, that we had all seen the show before. (It is the first time I’ve gone to see a musical more than once, honest – and it wasn’t just to watch the show that I’d gone again, I hasten to add – I was also prompted by somewhat seamier thoughts!!)

At this point the lady next to me turned to me and said ‘Isn’t he gorgeous?’ Then she added lustfully, ‘Does he wear that small loincloth in the second half?’

‘Yes,’ I replied, and then added, ‘and he’s chained.’ At which point the poor woman sighed very loudly and almost literally dissolved into her seat.

I know it isn’t often you get to see a tasty looking semi-naked chained guy in the flesh with the opportunity to gaze on his fine body for a fair length of time. In fact if I’m honest I can’t think of any previous occasions when such an opportunity has arisen, more's the pity. This got me wondering and I spoke to a number of my female friends. The majority of them, it appears, have similar fantasies of a scantily clad, chained man. The general concensus was that the guy has got to be good looking, and very scantily dressed, if not nude and he most definitely has to be chained or at least restrained in a similar fashion. Ropes do it for some, chains for others.

Here I should hasten to add that he can’t look at all cowed or pathetic: he’s got to look strong, resentful and maybe angry – dangerous if he were released. So we have this powerful guy chained and we can do to him what we wish, or alternatively force him to do what we wish to us.

One of Maecenus’s servants cautiously approached the slave on the block and unfastened the ties of his tunic. It fell to the floor, leaving Taranis wearing just a short, full, Greek style skirt of white linen draped around his narrow waist. There was a gasp of admiration from those present. He was the epitome of male perfection that Roman’s admired so much. The thin strip of white contrasted perfectly with the slave’s tanned skin, which had been heavily oiled so that it had a slick sheen, putting even more emphasis on the well-developed muscles of his wide chest, strong arms and near perfect legs. He was a magnificent looking creature, and the bids began to come in hard and fast; twenty, forty, then eighty thousand denarii.

When an obviously very excited Gaius Cuspius bid a hundred thousand denarii, Maecenus held up his hand. ‘As some of you know already, the best is yet to come. In my estimation the true bidding is only just about to begin!’

He turned to look at Taranis and the slave stiffened anxiously, an entreating expression crossing his face for the briefest of moments before he regained full control of himself.

Aulus said softly, ‘now you are about to see what I saw last night. I am sure you will be impressed by the sight, as I was, dear Julia.’

She held her breath as Maecenus stepped forward and pulled off the brief linen skirt to reveal the slave in all his naked glory. It was as if someone had just got out a paint box and smeared red across the slave’s high cheekbone as they turned suddenly scarlet. Clearly he was ashamed because his sexual organ was in an obvious state of arousal. ‘He is magnificent, is he not?’ Aulus added chillingly. ‘I wager that even Poppaea would have trouble in accommodating a cock of that auspicious size.’

Women have always been considered the weaker sex but now that equality has gone a long way to redressing that problem, we are no longer going to be carried off by some handsome knight and imprisoned in a romantic castle. Nevertheless, deep down I think there are many romantic fantasies we still find stimulating. For some it might well be some guy abducting them and forcing his desires upon them, but for us liberated ladies it is the other way around. We want to be in charge and bend our captive male to our evil will.

Looking into the psychological aspects of the fantasy, it clearly has something to do with power over men, but not to the point where they become subdued in any way. A chained, powerful guy can still look dangerous, yet we can do what we like to them and they can do nothing to stop us, which equates to me as the perfect position for a female to find herself in. In a situation like this even the weakest of women becomes the powerful one, but deep in the back of one's mind is the titillating thought that if he escaped he could turn the tables on her and she would be dominated by this dangerous creature.

It was at this point I re-examined the books I’ve written and I realised that in all but one I played out my fantasy in the story. I’ve figured out that is why I like to write historicals or fantasy. It is usually much easier to set up a complex plot in which my strong sexy hero can be imperilled in some way and end up in chains. Usually, may I add, in the control of some seductive female or another who can use him to slake all her sensual desires. Although I have on some occasions left them in somewhat more perilous situations than that. So not only do I enjoy writing my books I find that I can play out my fantasies as well and hopefully entertain at the same time.

The lights were bright in the centre of the room, blinding him a little and making it difficult to see the individual faces of the audience. His chains were clipped into rings set in the marble floor and he was forced to stand there naked and exposed while Sarin proudly announced that this was his new slave – the traitor, Tarn the former prince of Kabra.

‘Ensure he behaves,’ Sarin said to one of the naked Nubians.

The Nubian stepped behind Tarn, and took hold of the short chain leading from his gold slave collar. He stood so close that Tarn could perceive the heat emanating from his oiled flesh, smell his cinnamon scented breath and feel the man’s cock pressing against the small of his back.

The Nubian’s erection felt impossibly huge. Tarn hoped Sarin didn’t allow this man to take him as he felt the slave’s hand stoke his chest and stomach. He stood there fearing the worst as other slaves, both make and female joined him. Many gentle hands began to stroke his legs, arms and chest. A woman crawled forward on her hands and knees to kiss his feet. He felt naked breasts being pressed against his body, while the Nubian ran his cock slowly down the crease of Tarn’s buttocks. Lovingly it rimmed the tight opening but never ventured inside.

Tarn closed his eyes as more hands and lips began to tantalisingly touch his naked flesh. It felt as if every portion of his skin was being teased by fingers, lips or moist tongues. His arousal increased. He gave a soft moan as a searching finger slid inside his nether mouth. Lips fastened around his penis, sucking on the head of his cock, while other lips brushed the ever-stiffening shaft. Hands and fingers cupped his balls and stroked the paper fine skin of his perineum. Then a wet tongue followed the same erotic path.

He no longer knew who was touching him, whether the slave was male or female, as his pleasure increased. He just relaxed and allowed the myriad of sensations to overwhelm his senses.


Janine Ashbless said...

Oh yes! Tie 'em up!

But they can't be broken or cowed - you're perfectly correct. They have to be suffering defiantly to the end.

I put my hero Veraine in chains/ropes in both Divine Torment and Burning Bright so I could do evil things to him. Bad bad Janine.

Of course the really evil thing I wanted to do to him in Burning Bright got censored. Grr.

Deanna Ashford said...

I know what you mean Janine I have the same problems.
How can we make the stories hotter when we are not allowed to write what we really want.

Madelynne Ellis said...

Hm, I chained Blaze up in Broken Angel and locked him in a cage for good measure. Oh, and then I did the unmentionable thing that we not supposed to write about to him too grin .

Hey, Janine, you could always post the censored bit here for us.

Amanda said...

a very sexy idea indeed. great post. of course, even those women among us who enjoy being chained & restrained or who imagine ourselves as such can't be classified as unliberated... in fact it's the opposite, n'est-ce pas? i'm sure the sexy men in chains feel very liberated too. being in chains is a liberating experience. and as someone who enjoys it, i can appreciate seeing men in chains from that point of view, empathetically.

Portia Da Costa said...

Wow, hot stuff, Deanna! And great excerpts!

Erastes said...

*Erastes gives herself lines*

I must NOT read Lust Bites at work
I must NOT read Lust Bites at work
I must NOT read Lust Bites at work
I must NOT read Lust Bites at work

*melts into pile of GOO*

t'Sade said...


What? What?

Uh, sorry got distracted by chained men...

... yummy. :)

Olivia Knight said...

I don't think I've chained any of my heroes up - I'm more likely to enslave them with a curse or imprison them on an island. My heroines suffer more than my heroes; lately I've been putting them through their paces with near-sadist fervour...

My men-in-chains epiphany, though, was an episode of Dr Who when Captain Jack Harkness appeared in chains. At the time I was more of a doctor-fancier, but that made my loyalties teeter. I think it made Mathilde's universe implode, though, if I remember correctly...

Anonymous said...

Well, let me see, novel called The Silver Cage, novella called The Silver Chains...

But, aw, you know, I like broken. Depends what breaks them.

In The Silver Crown Alfie is stoic through all the torture - but when they bring out Leon...

Works for me.

Anonymous said...

And, actually, O, what made my universe implode in that particular episode of Who was The Master, in handcuffs.

*whispers* Not really a Barrowman fan. Gulp.

Deanna Ashford said...

I agree I enjoyed that moment too. I am a JB fan.

littlelamblst said...

*furiously fanning self*

What a delicious way to start my morning...

Kate Pearce said...

Yup-love a man in chains, have chained up a few males (um actually almost all of them) in some way or another in my books.

One of my personal favorites is Maximus chained up in Gladiator-drool...

great post!

angell said...



Men in chains...yep yep yep. Always makes my blood boil. But I agree with what you're saying. If they're cowering and whimpering, then what's the point right?

And as for musical theatre - our Toronto production of We Will Rock You has the most DELICIOUS young man playing the lead (no chains but I can definately imagine him in them), and I've been to see it three times. Will be heading back for four, five and six before it leaves.

Deanna Ashford said...

Angell I hope he at least partially strips off during the performance.

TeresaNoelleRoberts said...

Not really so much on men in chains in general, but my gods, some of those pictures were delicious--and I enjoyed the explanation of why you do enjoy the suffering-but-defiant man.

(I think I don't enjoy the thought more because I get all jealous and pouty--I want to be the tormented one!)

Janine Ashbless said...

Gladiator in chains...

Kate Pearce said...

Thank you, Janine :)

Madeline Moore said...

Hmm, I don't think I ever really thought about this before but I'm definitely thinking about it now.
Gorgeous stuff, Deanna!

kristina lloyd said...

Dearie me! Pretty pics, Deannna, but I must take issue with the notion that dominating men is an activity for ‘liberated ladies’ whereas wanting him to dominate is something only less enlightened, unliberated women get off on. Purrrlease!

I love being dominated, forced, tied up etc. I find it very hot indeed. (Sorry. I know this confession must be a shock to you all.) It’s liberating in two ways – one, on the personal level, much as Amanda has explained it: being restricted is, paradoxically, an incredibly freeing experience. But secondly, on the broader socio-political level, it’s liberating and empowering for women to explore and express their sexuality – whatever the hell that sexuality is! If I enjoy being subjugated in the bedroom (or down a grotty back alley), it doesn’t follow that I believe society should operate along similar lines with men calling the shots, or that I’m indifferent to power imbalances in the big wide world. It just means I find it hot! And equality is surely about my right to enjoy my version of hotness.

Power to you, Deanna, and to your lust for sexy men in bondage. But please don't imply that women whose kink is the reverse of yours belong to some dark, pre-feminist era, and that your take on it is somehow superior. That's just silly and simplistic!


Sweet Samantha said...

Props to you Kristina!

I've always perfered reading about men tying up their women.

I always felt it more freeing in that you're no longer responsilbe for whatever happens. That all falls on the shoulder of your man. If anything, I think that everyone needs a break from carrying the world on their back. My view is that if any woman benefitted from being tied up it would be the most "liberated".

Some think being tied up makes us weak. And that I have to say is the point. I don't WANT to be the strong one in this. I want to be able to let go completely and know that my partner will be there to take care of me.

Besides, as they say: it's the submissive who really holds all the power. Or at least most of it.

I wouldn't mind tying up a guy and ordering him to cater to my body every once in a while though :)

And in addition men DO look sexy as hell in chains!

(please note: I'm sexually inexperienced. I only turned 18 last April, sooo take everything I just said with a grain of salt. I know why I like reading about woman being tied up. So I'm pretty sure what I feel for this lifestyle still holds even if I've never actually done it? Cause I've sure as heck fantasized about it <3)

t'Sade said...


I suspect that those writers who write about werewolves straining at the chains, begging for some release probably haven't experienced it either. Ditto for the gladiators manacled on the sands of some arena, eyes burning as they refuse to ask for forgiveness.

Hell, I know that I haven't done it and it turns me the hell on. :) Actually, I've only done a small fraction of the things I've written about, just enough reality to go "oh! if it was like this... oh, yummy!"

Writing is a fantasy, it is exploring what you like and don't like, seeing the things that would be the hottest in a perfect world. I wrote about pony play LONG before I saw a pony show, still turned on about it. Wrote about transsexuals years before I finally got my hands on one, yep, turned me on.

Remarkably, for all the bondage I *do* write about, it is one of those things that doesn't show up in my life very often. Ditto on pierced nipples, not a single lover in my life had anything more than a pierced ear, but... that's one of those things that I always write about. Never done it, turns me the hell on.

Threesomes, well, I lived that before I wrote about it. :P

Sweet Samantha said...

I get what you're saying, but I think there's a difference between writing convincingly and outright stating to a group that THIS is THAT.

I mean, I've read novels where the hero rips his woman's underwear right off. And I loved it lol. But in reality (and thanks to a gf who's borfriend actually did this) it isn't that great (it took forever for him to do, she had a rash that burned for 2 days and lasted for a week, and she lost a pair of good pantys).

So as appealing as it may sound, those who've experienced it have more ground to say whether it's a fun thing or not than say me. Who would've said it would be absolutely amazing having her man rip her pantys off.