At the base of the central mountains, right where the river meets the foothills, the tired traveler can find one of the most peaceful and soothing locations in all of Kinktasia – Healing Springs. Whether recovering from intense physical play or deep emotional catharsis, anyone across the land is welcomed here by the calming warmth of the springs and the gentle nurturing hands of the Clerics. Taking care of one another can manifest in many ways in Kinktasia, and not all of it is soft and easy, but Healing Springs is one place where the weary can always be assured of a comforting touch and an understanding reception. No matter which cities you have visited, when you are in need of peace and a willing ear, visit Healing Springs to bask in the accepting care of the Clerics who perform their services there.
The Fighter and the Toymaker were both traveling wearily toward Healing Springs, so they fell into step together. As they both neared the end of long traveling, they shared stories of their experiences. The Toymaker was covered in bruises that drew a proud smile to their face while telling the story of the play that had left them behind. The Fighter had played in dark waters, facing down the threatening specter of past traumas during her play. Both of them were anxious to reach the calming welcome of Healing Springs, where the gentle Clerics walked to and fro among the Springs, offering whatever the occupants needed, from gentle massage to healing creams and affirming words. As they entered the sacred caverns where the Springs flowed, they shed their armor gratefully and allowed the Clerics to usher them into the warm pools. The Fighter encountered a man who wept with unabashed abandon, releasing all of his tension into the water as his tears ran down his face. The Toymaker sank down next to a girl who asked anxious questions of the Clerics, needing to hear that her actions had been nothing deserving of shame. As time flowed past them all like the healing stream of water from deep under the earth, a quiet fell, and they all rested there in peace until the Clerics led them gently to plush, soft beds where they would sleep dreamlessly throughout the night, waking on the first beams of the morning sun, filled with energy and ready to begin a new day’s questing.
Healing Springs Quests
There are many high intensity, deeply pleasurable, sometimes painful joys to be had in the pursuit of kinky adventures. As the Clerics know, however, the quiet afterwards can be just as important, and just as fulfilling as the quest itself. While many of the quest lines in KinkQuest are about trying new things in specific ways, the real point of this game is to do things, whether they are new things or familiar favorites with intention. If pursuing the aftermath of kink, whether aftercare or the resolution of subspace or Domspace with thought and focus is of interest to you, you can claim this quest.
Every kinkster is unique in their preferences, the way they want to play, the way they communicate, and challenges they face. Just as everyone’s play is unique, so is everyone’s aftercare. The Clerics know that every adventurer who finds their way to the Springs needs something different and unique to them. Unfortunately, when we take care of each other after our play, we don’t have the preternatural senses of the Clerics, so understanding our partners needs will require intentional communication. One good way to start having the necessary conversation is to build an aftercare kit together. What might you need in the kit based on the specific ways that you intend to play together? (First aid supplies or bruise cream?) What might the partner who will bottom need in the kit based on their preferences and needs? (A favorite blanket? A special chocolate? A juice box?) What might the partner who will top need in the kit based on their preferences and needs? (A water bottle? An extra pair of safety scissors?) To claim this quest, determine the components of your aftercare kit, and assemble it.
It’s important to talk about what we know about our own reactions to various stimuli before we are actually experiencing those reactions. It’s especially important because during intense play, we will sometimes experience unexpected reactions, so at the very least, we should prepare our partners for the reactions we know we can anticipate. When play gets emotionally intense, what do you need afterwards? Some of us need to be left alone to process our reactions in peace so we can discuss things later, some of us need to quiet our thoughts and go immediately to sleep, and some of us need to talk about what happened right away. Some of us just need space to talk, others might need to be asked questions in order to help us say what we need to say. These are important conversations to have. If things get emotionally intense for you, what signs should your partner watch for? How should they expect you to behave afterwards and what, specifically do you imagine you might need from them? Even if you turn out to need something different from what you expected when the moment comes, having had the conversation beforehand can make it easier to have a different conversation now. To claim this quest, have a serious conversation specifically about your reactions to deep emotions during play, and whatever you know about what kind of aftercare that might entail. (This applies to D-types as well as s-types, as emotions happen on either side of the slash during play!) (If you could use some guidance having that conversation, check the Resources page in the forum for a worksheet that might be helpful.)
Just as we all react differently to emotional pressures during play, we also react to physical sensation differently. It’s easy to think that as long as a top ‘knows what they are doing,’ they will be able to predict your reactions and know what kind of aftercare you will need. While an experienced top should know to watch carefully to try to gauge your reactions, and while they might have some past experiences of aftercare that has worked for others in similar situations, you are unique and no one knows as well as you do how your body reacts to situations in play, and what kind of aftercare you might need after intense physical play. To claim this quest, have a serious conversation about reactions you expect you might have, what those reactions look like, and what kind of aftercare you might need. (If you could use some guidance having that conversation, check the Resources page in the forum for a worksheet that might be helpful.)
Playing with D/s can be very intense, and whether the play is physical or emotional, it’s important to understand the concept of subspace, both during play and afterwards. Subspace is a specific headspace that occurs in s-types, generally when they are overwhelmed by sensations and when they are feeling very submissive. Subspace can be wonderful, but it’s important that newer tops be aware of that altered state of mind when it happens as submissives deep in subspace might be less likely to communicate a problem, or might become subvocal and be unable to communicate at all. The importance of understanding subspace continues to impact the situation after play is over, as spending time in subspace often leads to another phenomenon called subdrop. Subspace and the resulting negative feelings of subdrop are chemical reactions in the body to intense emotions or sensations, but they can cause feelings of loneliness, depression, or other really negative outcomes. To claim this quest, settle in together to talk specifically about subspace and subdrop. When have you experienced them before? (This refers to both the bottom’s personal experience, and the top’s experience having seen those phenomena in other partners.) What might they look like? How might you handle them? This is kink, you have likely done research before, spend some time now researching subspace and subdrop together. (If you could use some guidance having that conversation, check the Resources page in the forum for a worksheet that might be helpful.)
Despite the focus only on subspace and subdrop in the previous quest, don’t worry D-types, we didn’t forget about you! Domspace, sometimes known as the flow state is real, and so is Domdrop, though it can manifest differently in different people, sometimes feeling very similar to subspace, or like an inability to access your Dominant mindset for a certain period of time, or sometimes feeling like guilt or shame about the sexy, kinky things that your partner may have enjoyed very much. If you’ve been reading this entire quest line, you won’t be surprised to hear what you should do about it – do some research together and talk about it! What has Domspace and Domdrop looked like in the past for you or your partners? How should you deal with it if it happens again? To claim this quest, settle in with your partner and have a nice long conversation about Domdrop. (If you could use some guidance having that conversation, check the Resources page in the forum for a worksheet that might be helpful.)
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