It is warm today. I can feel the slow crawl of the beads of sweat as they roll down my skin. Sir has decided against the house collar. I wear only my day collar; its slight weight a reminder of Sir’s care for me.

I kneel in my spot, on a mat to save my knees, waiting. Our agreement is hurt, but do not injure.

I do not know what I am waiting for. I hear noises from Sir as he works downstairs. A rumbly-mumble as he talks out a problem to himself occasionally floats up. Banging and power tools are punctuated by silence.

His footsteps come up the stairs. Mentally, I run through my checklist of our protocols to make sure I am hitting them.

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