Monday, January 31, 2011

Design notes for Vesta (Chastity Planet)

What follows isn’t erotica – it’s the design notes for my erotic world, Vesta. Feel free to use this world in your own stories, as long as you credit me, and don’t change any of the established “facts”.

If you want to add anything to Minerva or Femtopia, please clear it with me first.

(With thanks in particular to Anonymous and Night Owl.)


Updated July 2015 to support current series.

Erotic Purpose

“Vesta” is intended as a psychologically plausible SciFi world in which male chastity and disempowerment are givens, so that ostensibly vanilla people can have different flavors of Femdom adventures. Most visitors to the planet will have a fairly straightforward and vanilla experience. The erotic stories merely concentrate on the (un)fortunate people who do have “adventures”.

If you like, think of the place as one huge Milgram Experiment.

Design Specifications

Institutions, customs and laws are never about the boy
  • Vesta belongs to women. Any Femdom is a by-product of female practical and aesthetic desires and needs. Most women don’t go the extra mile to create fetish action – they don’t need to. Women come to Vesta for a variety of reasons, but rarely because they are Dommes.
  • This is vital in order to support the psychological realism.
Day-to-day life is like ours but with a twist
  • Too much technology or exoticism makes it hard to identify with the characters or situations.
  • The setting in the alien-administered Adult Zone ensures that technology is limited and inconsistent.
There are never any free penises on Vesta
  • For story reasons, male chastity is a given. The most you can hope for is that the tip of your cup opens, enabling you to masturbate. All cups are flesh toned to match the skin of the man, but have a sligth masculine bulge.
Pregancy, STD and physical safety are not an issue
  • This is fantasy after all. However, the technology ensures this.
Diversity
  • Vesta is home to many different cultures.
Longevity
  • This is the far future. Once they hit early middle age, people live a very long time.

Background to the setting: The Adult Zone

Vesta is orbits a star in the Adult Zone. This is a region of the galaxy on the fringe of a civilization of inscrutable Aliens. Perhaps as an experiment, perhaps as a buffer zone or an attempt at social engineering, the Aliens have invited humans to found civilizations on terra-formed worlds in the zone, with the proviso that there will be no children. (Hence the name).

Technology
Aliens place severe limits on technology within the zone, except in the areas of Law Enforcement, Medicine, Space Transport. There's slightly more leeway for Agriculture, Transport and Construction. So expect aircars, construction machines and harvesters with female operators.
Even so, the experience on any of the planets is primitive compared to the rest of the human galaxy.

Assigning land rights
The aliens control the apportion of land on these Adult Worlds, however anybody with enough people an resources can apply to set up a state as long as it fits the planet’s general theme. If approved, the Aliens provide technology to support the desired culture, e.g. cups and rings for Vesta.

Cultural place in the Galaxy
The Adult Zone acts as a sink for humanity’s misfits and idealists. The worlds range from the grim and murderous to the utopian, e.g. a gladiatorial world, several gay worlds, more primitivist worlds, ones set up to be explicitly BDSM and so on.
Vesta fits into the utopian/idealist end of the spectrum.

Minerva and Femtopia and other settlements

The state of Minerva was settled by utopian Femnists who thought if gender wasn’t a social construct, then it damn well should be. They decided to set up a civilization in which everybody could be penetrated, but in which nobody had a penis. To this end the Aliens supplied chastity cups and violence inhibitors, and provided rather good hi-tech feeldoes.

In order to bump up the male numbers, the rich philanthropists behind Minerva threw money at the Minverva State University, bought in the best female teachers, and offered cheap education to males in the hope that some of them would stay.

There are two male castes in Minerva:
  • Student - skin-toned permanently closed chastity cups with prostate inhibitor. Few civil rights.
  • Citizen - skin-toned permanently closed chastity cups with no prostate inhibitor. Equal rights with female citizens, but no vote.

The prostate inhibitor simply detects pain and applies an electrical shock to the penis. It's theoretically possible for penetration to still lead to ejaculation, but the process would be very painful and not something you'd do yourself.

In addition, the campus has strict rules banning all sex toys.

Initial Success

The University proved surprisingly popular with young men, not least because doing a tour on Vesta implied learning to be a good lover.

Initially, most of the residents were transient students, while most of the actual permanent citizens settled into Lesbian relationships. There are a small number of male gay relationships,  

Breakaway State: Femtopia
However, some women found it was hard to persuade the men they loved to stay. Some felt that the closed cup policy was too draconian and did not give them enough leverage, or didn’t like penetrating men. And others believed that women were naturally superior, and wanted a more stratified society. 

Together they formed an alliance and applied to set up the State of Femtopia just across the Straits of Juno on the next-door continent...

Femtopia (The Free Territories of the Feminist Sexual Utopia) is modelled on pre-modern patriarchal cultures, but reversed.

Caste System
Femtopia imposes a caste system on men, intended to nudge them into permanent relationships:
Summary of Femtopia Male Castes
Caste (rank)
Cup
Collar
Obeys
Job
Notes
Free Neuter (1)
Closed, Full
Smoked Glass
No
Yes
Intended for visitors and contractors, but also adopted by guest workers.
Thrall (2)
Opens, Full, Program-able
Gold
Yes
Yes
When a woman owns one bondsman, he becomes a thrall.
Analogue of 1950s housewife. Obeys any direct simple orders from the mistress. She can adjust the settings on his cup, e.g. close it for a set time, has a mute button. Post orgasmic, she can open the cup enough to expose the tip of the penis.
Bondsman (2)
Opens outside service hours, Full
Lipstick Red
During service hours
No
When a woman owns two or more thralls, they become bondsmen.
Owes 8 hours service to his owner. Has no money of his own and may not be employed except by owner. The intention is that he should find a Mistress who will buy him out. Any post orgasmic woman can open the tip of his cup.
Neuter (3)
Closed, Tight
Bronze Look
Yes
No
A slave. The tight cup forces the testicles to “tuck” and covers the pubic triangle, giving a hairless neutered look. Obeys any direct simple orders from the mistress. Reputed continued state of arousal puts them outside their mistress’ social sphere.
Mute (4)
Closed, Tight
Iron Look
Yes
No
As Neuter, except mute.
Caste Movement
A male can sub-vocalize a key word. 24 hours later, he responds to a confirmation message and the police come to pick him up and transfer him to named resident, or to the auction house. The ex-owner receives no compensation.
Neuter and Mute were originally intended as “rock bottom”. All cups are flesh toned.
Movement
Movement
Cost to slave
Mode
Limitations
Owner Compensated
Promotion
Resets current tour + original tour
To named female resident (not immediately previous owner), unless promoting to Free Neuter.
No waiting
No
Sideways
Resets tour
Compulsory sale via Auction, owner can’t bid.
3 months + 3 months wait for every previous Sideways Move.
Sale price –fee.
Demotion
None.
(But if you demote from Free Neuter, you can bank the money offworld)
To named female resident (not immediately previous owner).
1 month wait
No
Example: Peter signs up for a 1 year tour as a Free Neuter. However, he’s not quite good looking enough to find well paid work. After a month, he sells himself as a Bondsman to a coffee shop owner. He flirts with the customers, especially the beautiful Lydia and the slightly aggressive Freya. With 8 months to go,
Freya buys him as her thrall, (making the proprietor happy). However, Freya expects him to continue to work in the coffee shop for money, and to maintain a high-standard of housekeeping, and begins to mistreat him, withdrawing orgasm.
With 5 months to go, he has the following options:
  • Promote to Free Neuter - This will reset his tour, and add another year to it, meaning he will have 24 months to serve.
  • Move Sideways – This will reset his tour, giving him 12 months to serve.
  • Demote to Neuter – Only 5 months to go, but no chance of an orgasm.
He’s so desperate for an orgasm that he opts for sideways, which merely resets his tour.
However, he’s bought by a cleaning company. After 1 month, the hard work and constant beatings, and little chance to socialise and thus get off, make the role unbearable. Rather than wait 6 months before he can go for auction (since this will be his second move), he can either promote to Free Neuter and have 24 months to serve, or Demote to Neuter and have 11. He has little choice but give himself to a Lydia from his coffee shop days. She’s flattered but can’t afford to keep him. After a night of passion, she auctions him off.
A vengeful Freya happens to be at the auction, buys him and makes his life a living hell. Worse, she begins to force him to have anal sex. Since the possible consequences include both demotion and an extended time, he cannot afford to stick around. He demotes to Mute and opts to be auctioned – at least that way his new owner will be able to afford him.
Niki, a cabaret performer, buys him, and he looks forward to 10 months serving a fascinating woman. Unfortunately, befuddled by his pent up sexuality, he falls in love with her and promotes himself to her thrall.
From Mute to Neuter resets his tour, and adds the original time, taking him to 24 months. Neuter to Thrall adds the original time again, taking him to 36 months.
Niki is furious, and feels violated by his presumption and expression of love. She beats him and mistreats him. Thanks to his earlier compulsory sales, he still has a 6 month wait if he wants to move sideways. Unable to face any sort of slavery, he promotes again to Free Neuter – taking him to a 4 year tour – and begins a relationship with Lydia.
Unfortunately, after a year, Lydia’s career takes her off world. If he comes with her, his tour will be suspended, but the cup will remain closed. What’s more important to him? Love or the possibility of an orgasm…?
Meanwhile, the ring given to all women on Vesta enables them to assign demerits to men, with 5 demerits earning escalating public corporal punishment. Mistresses must pay a fine if their man has a public whipping, but can dodge this by administering the punishment themselves in one of the public whipping stations.
Consequences of Anal Sex
Though anal sex is encouraged in Minerva, in Femtopia it carries risks to the male. Several days after having an anally caused orgasm, there’s a 5% chance of Consequences. These are not fully known, and seem to change from time to time, but include: demerit; demotion and ownership or loss of ownership by the penetrator; significant time penalty; and bonding – only the penetrator can now pleasure the male anally. For Free Neuters, the Consequences are always initially bonding. Consequences can permanently change the status of visiting tourists.
Who comes to Femtopia
Of course, the parts of Femtopia nearest Minerva quickly came to resemble Girls Gone Wild on Spring Break. The tourism means that men are offered big bucks to do a tour as a Bondsman, and can also earn good money as a Free Neuter.
For more on Minerva and Femtopia, see below.
Other states
In time, Femtopia spawned other less well funded colonies which attract fewer males, these include:
  • Amazonia - Female supremacist. All men are closed-cup slaves with few social or legal rights, and a mute button. This gets a steady trickle of volunteers, but can’t really compete with the real Femdom worlds in the Adult Zone. Most “Amazons” are Lesbians, which is less fun than it sounds.
  • Neutralia - Apart from voting rights, men and women are equal. All resident men have cups that expose the very tip of their penises, essentially giving them a clitoris. Popular with gender benders. For everybody else, a very disorientating place to visit.
Other locations in the system
Other terraformed moons and worlds exist, most with Standard Gravity in the settled areas. All have the same basic conditions, but vary in theme, for example the neo-primitivist jungle world of Flesh.

Culture and Conditions
Fashion, gender relations and whether washrooms and showers are unisex tends to reflect the host culture and individual preferences.
Thanks to the limits on technology, day-to-day life is much like ours. However, most people are used to the high standards maintained by the AIs and droids back home, so initially find the place a bit shabby. Kept Men, Neuters and Mutes have to work very hard indeed to meet what their mistress regards as reasonable standards.

Immigration and Emigration

On arriving at the “Big O” orbital station, men are fitted with cup appropriate to their destination and caste, and women with a ring that enforces infertility and has various powers depending on the location.
Male tourists and visitors, e.g. spacers on shore leave, are always closed cup Free Neuters, but do not have a set tour. However, visas have a time limit. If you overstay, you automatically start a one year tour.
All men resident for more than a month must sign up for a tour, minimum of one year. A Free Neuter, and any other man with permission, has the option to leave at any time, but his cup remains active and closed. He must return and complete the tour before it can be removed. (Being alien technology, nobody even understands how the cups work.)
The rings deactivate on leaving Vesta.
Main vanilla reasons for male immigration are:
  • Cheap education
  • Money earned as Free Neuter, or by selling yourself into the Bondsman caste
  • Gigolo kudos (if you’ve done a tour on Vesta, girls assume you’re good in bed).
  • To accompany a female partner
Main reasons for female immigration:
  • Career – Vesta pays well.
  • Issues with sexuality
  • To have a break from men
  • Fun
Men coming to Vesta looking for “traditional” fetish-style Femdom are usually disappointed. The focus is rarely on them, and day to day life usually resolves around service, not sexuality.

Minerva and Femtopia – erotic tensions

Most of the Chastity Planet stories happen between Minerva and Femtopia.
Atmosphere
New Athens like the rest of Minverva, is a mostly sedate university town with stone and brick buildings and retro architecture. There are pubs and clubs, but they close at midnight, and reasonable decorum is enforced.
The part of Femtopia with the best beaches is within easy commute from New Athens, but is under the shuttle path to the Space Port, meaning the property prices are low. So, though most of this area is therefore a sprawling strip development of clubs and pleasure beaches, it also includes the residences of those who prefer to live in Femtopia and commute to Minerva for study or work.
The inland settlements of Femtopia have a bohemian feel. The stunning landscape draws artists and poets, and eco-tourists.
Commuters and internal tourists
Kept Men can travel to Minerva as long as they have their mistress’s permission, so it’s quite common for student couples to shack up here and commute back (the males are closed-cup when in Minerva but maintain the same collar colour).
Similarly, the less well paid staff, or poorer female students, may well prefer to rent a house in Femtopia rather than share an apartment in Minerva. This is especially true of artists and musicians, who need space.
The beach area, of course, is very much girls gone wild. Parties of students come over on the rampage every weekend, and every vacation. Not all the makes make it back to class…
Public Image
Minerva portrays itself as a sedate, safe place. Whenever the topic of Femtopia comes up, the response is to dismiss the place as a a bit of an embarrassment but not ultimately significant - like Sun City in apartheid South Africa, or Vegas in the US.
Consequently, Minerva is the destination of choice for lady students from very conservative worlds, some of whom arrive with their own chaperons. Of course, there's a certain amount of collusion and self deception on the part of the parents.
Femtopia is careful to present a "safe girls night out" image, and not to dwell on the readily available sex- think contemporary Jamaica or Ibitha. Even so, few people would want the place on their CV.
Various inland resorts exist that portray themselves as Minvervan-style enclaves. The food and wine gives ladies of a certain age a good excuse to visit.

Stories

Almost any kind of femdom or chastity story is possible, ranging from the sweet romance through to the full blown revenge tale of a psycho ex girlfriend who tracks the hero down to Vesta.

20 comments:

will said...

Leaving out dammed this time?
What about penalties for tampering with the cup?

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

Thanks for sharing the latest notes on Vesta (and its flattering to see that some of my suggestions made the cut). I do, however, have some more questions and comments:

1) How heavily industrialized is Vesta? I get the impression that the entire planet is a mix of “college town” and “resort destination”, with only light industry planetside - is that a fair assessment?

2) Does Vesta have any moons or sibling planets? Is there anything interesting on them?

3) What forms of transportation are available on Vesta? Flying bubble cars (a la “The Jetsons”)? Automobiles? Rickshaws? How about trains, planes, and/or suborbital shuttle flights?

4) How old does one have to be to visit Vesta? If the universities are a major draw, it seems like you’d need to allow people as young as 16-17 (to visit the schools).

5) Are cups and collars still capable of on-the-fly color/caste changes? Or do the males have to be reprocessed?

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

And my thoughts:

A) A growing colony always needs specialists, so its easy to see why a tour on Vesta would be a career boost. However, I think you might need an academic draw - something to draw professors, potential grad students, and the like (colonials tend to go back to the “mother country” for school, not vice versa).

My suggestion would be to use the cups, collars, and alien-provided manufacturing facilities (if any). The chance to understand alien tech would be a big draw, and a steady stream of (even minor) discoveries would insure a never-ending supply of intrigued academics.

B) Femtopia doesn’t come across as a full-fledged country (wouldn’t students living in Femtopia go to the Femtopia university instead?) - instead it feels more like the kind of frontier from which nations like Minerva, Neutralia, and Amazonia arise.

My suggestion would be to make Femtopia the territory unclaimed by other nations, organized under the original colonial charter. Its easy to see how something “the Free Territories of the Feminist Sexual Utopia” could quickly get contracted to “Femtopia”, and if the cup/collar system was inherent from the original colony days, it explains why all of the nations on Vesta would use it.

I think this works with what you’ve written about the settlement of New Athens. If you look at the British colonization of North America, territorial grants would be made to individuals or groups, who’d set the basic flavor and laws of the future colony (Virginia was a profit making enterprise, Maryland was a utopian effort at religious freedom, . . .). Then colonists would be recruited and sent, and they’d form the actual community, adding their own twists/laws (the Pilgrims shifting the focus of Plymouth/Massachusetts from resource extraction to religious commune)

So Femtopia would technically predate New Athens, even if no one was initially living just under the Femtopia rules. Then people leave New Athens for the inherent potential of social stratification & sexual control inherent in the free territories (but stay close enough to commute in), then other colonists come and settle. . .

This also would explain how Neutralia and Amazonia could arise out of Femtopia - enough women get together in an area of Femtopia, put together a stable society, and petition for official recognition (and the right to have their set of modifications to cup & collar be recognized, and available at the immigration port)

C) There is still an asymmetry between male & female sex in Neutralia - the possibility of vaginal penetration. It seems like you’d either need a way to keep the females from being vaginally penetrated, or somehow give the males an artificial vagina, to keep things “equal”

D) This is purely personal, but the name “Amazonia” just feels overdone. Keeping with the neo-Hellenic feel, may I suggest something like “Sappho” (the female Greek poet who gave us the adjective “sapphic”) or “Panthesilea” - leader of the Amazons who fought at Troy. Plus, “Amazon” is derived from an ancient Greek term for women without breasts - not necessarily a comparison the pro-female sexuality colonists of Vesta would welcome.

E) You might want to allow construction droids “in the background” - someone has to build all the structures, and forcing the early colonists to do so by themselves introduces wild cards into the evolution of the colony. And it allows for larger, more elaborate structures than would be otherwise practical

Giles English said...

@Will
*Leaving out dammed this time?*
Yes. It seemed too explicitly BDSM, and just too much of a threat.

*What about penalties for tampering with the cup?*
It's not possible to tamper with the cup. There probably is a theoretical penalty, but in the stories the cups are a given.

(Thanks for your input!)

Giles English said...

1) How heavily industrialized is Vesta?

Given the tech limits, I think as you say, the economy is mostly resort and education, and subsistance. However, there will be boutique food production, and arts and crafts.

2) Does Vesta have any moons or sibling planets? Is there anything interesting on them?

Yes. Terraformed moons. Possibly some sibling planets, again terraformed. More of the same, I suppose, but with different environmental emphasis, or different tech levels.

3) What forms of transportation are available on Vesta? Flying bubble cars (a la “The Jetsons”)? Automobiles? Rickshaws? How about trains, planes, and/or suborbital shuttle flights?

Good question. I think there's only one shuttle port. Practical transport is bubble cars with anti-g.


4) How old does one have to be to visit Vesta? If the universities are a major draw, it seems like you’d need to allow people as young as 16-17 (to visit the schools).

Ah, interesting question. In the UK, the age of consent is 16. However, most commercial erotica houses stipulate 18+ for all players. I would tend to want to stick with that to avoid the wrong emphasis.


5) Are cups and collars still capable of on-the-fly color/caste changes? Or do the males have to be reprocessed?

On the fly.

(Thanks for all this, by the way.)

Giles English said...

A) Re studying alien tech – good idea. However, I don't want the stories to be about the aliens. Possibly there's some intriguing archaeology.


B) Femtopia doesn’t come across as a full-fledged country (wouldn’t students living in Femtopia go to the Femtopia university instead?) - instead it feels more like the kind of frontier from which nations like Minerva, Neutralia, and Amazonia arise.


Hmm. I can see the logic. However, Minerva is much less extreme than the rest. The kind of thing people might contemplate while living in normal society. Femtopia and the others only seem sensible if you're already used to the odd arrangements of Minerva.

Also, remember the land is handed out in a measured and logical way by the aliens. The other citizens can't stop a group from seceding, and the other states can't prevent the aliens from handing out the land.

In story terms, this keeps things simple and stable, and avoids the whole thing being about politics.


I do like "The Free Territories of the Feminist Sexual Utopia” though and shall use it.

C) There is still an asymmetry between male & female sex in Neutralia - the possibility of vaginal penetration.

True, but there'll be some complex postmodern feminist explanation.


D) This is purely personal, but the name “Amazonia” just feels overdone.

Good point. It needs a name that doesn't require a classical education to understand, though. Any ideas?


E) You might want to allow construction droids “in the background”

Very good point. Thanks!

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

Hmm . . . I appear to have missed a key element - as of right now, how are the castes color coded?

Oh, and when males visit somewhere like New Athens - do their cups/collars retain their "home" caste color, or do they temporarily shift to the local color (or maybe a mix of the two)?

And this has been fun - thanks for including us in the shaping of your world

Giles English said...

*wouldn’t students living in Femtopia go to the Femtopia university instead?*

Most people wouldn't want that on their CV, and many of the girls at New Athens come from conservative cultures.

There are vinyards and artist's colonies inland, plus agriculture.

Giles English said...

Have made some updates.

Not sure about cup colours. Think they might all be flesh tone.

Giles English said...

Have made more updates. Will probably delete most of these comments in order to make room for more...

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

Interesting updates . . .

A) - Why are you letting men promote to thrall without permission of his mistress? Isn't that like letting a guy marry a woman without proposing first?

B - How are you envisioning the chastity cups? Like a traditional athletic cup? Banana cup? An orb that extends up and around the genitalia? Or something else?

C - How are you going to keep New Athens "normal", and not a mix of lesbians, gay men and would-be dommes?

Even if the males in New Athens only sign up for one year tours (and take a holiday off-world between contracts), a year without penile stimulation or much hope of orgasm is going to discourage most male immigrants, and quickly run most of the hardy few off - particularly with Femtopia right there. And if you're trying to sell New Athens to girls (and their parents) from conservative worlds . . .

Its one thing to expect the guys to perform oral sex on their girlfriends, but the idea that the girls might have to anally penetrate their boyfriend with a dildo (or that this is the only hope for the boys) is going to be a big issue. And it would seem to promote a social relationship that feels a lot more like Amazonia than the more "prudish" society you're hoping will lure immigrants in.

Off the top of my head, I see two possible solutions (to keep heterosexual guys in the mix).

1 - Ban men from living in Minerva. They can commute in and study/work in Minerva proper, but they officially have to live in Femtopia (the University of New Athens could keep their coed/male dorms there, for example) - and thus participate in the Femtopian caste system.

2 - Carve out some sort of special caste/status for Minervan males in Femtopia. Perhaps the Minervan collars are navy blue, and - in Femtopian territory - Minervan cups function like those of Femtopian bondsmen. You could throw in some kind of stipulation - maybe they're limited to X number of openings per year - to keep the Minervan "guests" distinct from the Femtopian bondsmen (or keep people from trying to game the system)

There are probably other solutions, but those are the two that leapt to mind. And I think both give you more potential story hooks - such as all of those predatory Femtopian females trolling for those innocent young college guys in their bright blue collars.

Giles English said...

First, thanks for helping to iron out the flaws. I want to use this setting for a long time to come, so it needs to be to work without any obvious holes.


"A) - Why are you letting men promote to thrall without permission of his mistress? Isn't that like letting a guy marry a woman without proposing first? "

If she doesn't want you, she can sell you on. The guy in the example, should have asked - except he was mute :). It introduces the possibility of giving yourself to a relative stranger, like in those old perfume adverts.


"B - How are you envisioning the chastity cups? Like a traditional athletic cup? Banana cup? An orb that extends up and around the genitalia? Or something else?"

The "loose" cups are very cup like, emphasizing the masculinity like with male ballet dancers. The "tight" ones give a very flat profile.

"C - How are you going to keep New Athens "normal", and not a mix of lesbians, gay men and would-be dommes?" and regarding issues around anal penetration and male abstinence…

There are better worlds for gays and dommes. Gay men can't penetrate, due to the anti-aggression collar.

*Should I add a "men can't touch each other" rule?*

Good points re the others.
Minverva isn't *about* sex, and the ideal is that men, through yoga etc will transcend their base natures. This is one of the selling points to a small % of a very big galaxy. There's also a school of thought that in a loving relationship, they'll achieve release through mystic union with their beloved etc etc.

In light of this, I'll have the dildos and prosthetics as imports from Femtopia.

I think, though, the student visa should be on a semester by semester basis so that the guys can get off planet and get laid, or at least get off.

Your solutions, though laden with narrative possibility, violate the required cultural denial regarding male sexuality.

I agree the idea of Minerva being attractive to some conservative cultures is a little unrealistic. However (1) The presence of the men is a selling point to some conservative cultures, because an all-female institutions have a reputation for Lesbianism, (2) Minerva has a very, very, good PR/Marketing department, and (3) this unrealism happens off-screen, off world so doesn't affect the psychological realism of the stories.


Re "blue collars"

Yes, I love the idea of Minervan males having blue collars to mark them out. If they do get penetrated by the predatory local women, they get held up at customs and prevented from leaving until the waiting period for the Consequences is up. Very embarrassing, even if they're subsequently OK.

Thanks again, and please continue to give me all this useful feedback.

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

Hmm . . .

1) - You've added involuntary demotions between "thrall" and "bondsmen", and (I think) the possibility of an involuntary promotion from "bondsman" to "thrall" (if a female buys the bondsmen's contract). Do the men still take a penalty, if they're subject to an involuntary change in status?

2) - I think I'm missing something about the setting. I get that - officially - Minerva denies male sexuality. However, it was my understanding that this is an attempt at social engineering, not dogma. Since all of the women of Minerva themselves immigrated at 18+, I don't understand how they can not know about the male sex drive. Unless they're from some all-female world, I don't see how they've avoided the "birds and the bees", or having boys ask them out.

So while the women of Minerva may think the guys should be able to do without traditional orgasm, wouldn't they be aware that most males won't? If nothing else, there's the matter that they keep losing males to Femtopia and other, more orgasm-friendly worlds - that's got to raise some questions.

And Femtopia definitely seems to be aware of the male sex drive. Weren't the founders of Femtopia seeking to use the male sex drive to manipulate men (either keeping them in a relationship, or prompting them to enslave themselves? It seems like that such a culture would develop customs/traditions/rituals to inflame the male sex drive, the better to manipulate them. For example, I could see Femtopia celebrating its founding by temporarily making all Free Neuters de facto bondsmen of the state for one day (8 hours of community service, and a taste of orgasm - if they can find a willing woman) - or mandatory bachelor auctions (where the auction winner is entitled to carnal favors)

3) - By the way, in practice, I suspect that the men would probably chose things like weightlifting to burn off their excess sexual energy - and I doubt whether the women would mind that the guys are spending a fair amount of time getting in shape.

4) - I don't know about a "no touching" rule for males (it would be problematic for things like first aid), but something like that could definitely keep the sexual focus on the women.

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

a) - On re-reading my last comment, I think I need to rephrase something:

"So while the women of Minerva may think that the male sex drive shouldn't be a factor in making decisions, and that men ought to make decisions without regard to their potential for orgasm, wouldn't they also be aware of the role it does (and can) play, and that most men do take sex into consideration?"

b) - There might some potential in having a plantation system somewhere - with each woman in charge of dozens/hundreds/thousands of male laborers. Perhaps its technically a penal colony, with convicts from other countries/planets offered a tour on Vesta instead of the usual punishment. Some nonviolent offenders, some political prisoners, maybe even some "back to the land"/neo-hippies who want to work with their hands. Or perhaps its a group deliberately reversing historical ethnic roles?

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

I really shouldn't try and post when I'm this tired - I keep missing things.

1) - How are serious grievances settled between the nations of Vesta? Do the women go to war? Death-duels between the leaders? Sex competitions? Tattling to the aliens?

2) - You might want to consider having asteroid mining, and automated manufacturing plants (either in orbit or on one of the moons) - it can be surprising just how much metal, plastic, etc. people go through (and who wants to spend their life making plastic forks for picnics?)

3) - The point I was trying to make earlier (I think - it is getting late, and I'm getting tired), is that it seems unrealistic for the women to automatically assume that the men who come to Vesta automatically lose their sex drive - or that they can/should ignore it. Just because they acknowledge the male sexual imperative (and/or take advantage of it), doesn't make Vesta all about men achieving sexual pleasure (just as eating cats in the Far East doesn't mean that the point of Earth is to devour feline life forms).

So, if the Minervan women honestly believe that the male sex drive is a problem, there's no reason they couldn't try to break their men of this "addiction". Most of the Minervan women should probably realize that coed showers (particularly if they're open -i.e. no curtain - showers) are going to fire up the libido of pretty much any straight guy in the cosmos. However, they consider it a form of therapy, intended to "fix" the guys and make them into better human beings, for the sake of all women. Its an intervention, not a statement of support - a way of showing men how they should live.

And if Femtopia wants to try and poach males from Minerva by offering them sexual privileges - what's to stop them? They're an independent nation. And they're doing it to recruit quasi-husband/sex slaves and laborers - and the poor male who thinks the Femtopians are more sympathetic than the Minervans is in for a rude awakening.

In other words, neither civilization is about the male orgasm - one denies its importance, and the other values it only insofar as it can be used to squeeze work & female orgasms out of the males.



If this doesn't make sense (or I'm missing something obvious), my apologies - as I said earlier, I'm half asleep at this point.

Giles English said...

Yes, your last post I think captures the idea.

There are plenty of real examples of sincere but unrealistic approaches to sexuality, ranging from the medieval monks, Shakers, through to modern evangelicals. The male chastity belt itself was a Victorian invention aimed at keeping young men in check... So, there's nothing unrealistic about Minerva's lack of realism, especially when you consider how in a massive galaxy, only a tiny percentage of people need to believe in order to stock the planet - and we don't have to see all that, only what happens when people believing what they do arrive.

I love the idea of co-ed showers as an intervention... :)

Femtopia can poach, of course, but the downside is the virtual slavery and demerit system. Most males would want to hang on until the end of the semester.

Not sure about a Femtopia Mardi Gras... will have to explore the culture a bit first.

Yes, basic manufacturing plants in the asteroid belt, I think.

Not sure about penal - har har - plantations - the Vestans regard male chastity as an improvement, not a punishment, and would not want it associated with criminality. However, there probably are back to-earth plantations dotted around the planet.

Remember, in Femtopia, if you feel bored or exploited, you always have the option to shift.

Which brings me to Thralls/Bondsmen. They have the same rank. The difference is defined by how many your owner has. So, yes, a pissed off girlfriend can sell her man to an a businesswoman to use as a worker. Conversely, the fat woman in accounts can buy you if she has the cash.

This also creates the possibility of a double-cross - she seduces him to relocate from Minerva to Femtopia to be her bondsman, but then sells him to pay her university fees...

As for conflict resolution... not really part of the stories. Probably a planetary council resolves everything. (There must be scary death-dueling amazon worlds in the Adult Zone, but this isn't it)

Anonymous said...

You have already brought this up, but one thing I think you should emphasize strongly in the Vesta materials is the idea that most of the ways to get a college education in this corner of the universe are extremely expensive. If it could otherwise take 25% of your income for 50 years to pay off your student loans subjecting yourself to a few years on Vesta starts to make a lot more sense. This really does do wonders for the plausibility of the whole thing.

Secondly, there is no particular reason for Vesta's advertising material on other planets to be more truthful than the woeful average for advertising generally. I can readily envisage ads that play up the pluses of free education, and half naked women, while mentioning the whole chastity thing in very small print. This would greatly increase both the number of male students and their level of internal conflict.

Let us assume that once you've affixed your thumb and retina print to a contract in orbit there is no such thing as changing your mind. There are all sorts of possibilities for some female bureaucrat to fall out of her chair laughing when our unfortunate male protagonists points out the unfairness of it all.

Kold_Kadavr_flatliner said...

Exactly. See ya soon.

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

Some more random questions:

1) Other than voting (and sexual) rights, are male residents considered the equals of females in Minerva? Is there anything to prevent a "male suffrage" movement, or "open our cup" protests?

2) What is the founding principal/culture block for Amazonia? Is it a lesbian culture that grudingly admits males (for a constitutional obligation, some sort of gender based health concern, etc) out of necessity? Are they outright female supremacists who keep males around to underscore their philosophy? Is it a colony of sexual abuse victims that uses the chastized males as therapy?

3) Does the position of males in Amazonia correspond to one of the Femtopian castes? Or is it a unique level?

4)Other than sexual fetish, is there any reason for males to go to Amazonia (either short term or as a long term resident)? If so, what is the attraction(s)?

5) How do heterosexual relationships work in Amazonia? Is there some semblance of dating/courtship, or does a woman just grab the guy off the street? Is a male allowed to ask a woman out in Amazonia? Is he allowed to refuse her request for sex?

6) Do Neutralia and Amazonia participate in the demerit system? Do they have their own color codes for the collars?

~For Amazonia, at least, it seems like you might want to have one collar for "free"/communally owned males, and another color for ones who currently have a mistress (lets the women know whether a male is fair game, or if someone's gonna complain).

7)What is the founding block/principal for Neutalia? Romantics desiring a "non-aggressive" sexuality (defining penetrative intercourse as aggressive)? Transvestites? Something else?

8)Does Neutralia use gender neutral clothing? Can people where the clothes of either gender? Can women go topless, or do both genders need to wear shirts? What about lingerie/swimwear?

9)How does the demotion from Free Neuter to Thrall work in Femtopia? Is there a wedding-style proposal? Do friends/family celebrate? Or is it just a matter of filing paperwork?

10)Are there any reasons to travel between the different colony-nations? Are cup sizes/access determined by the local rules, or by whatever the lowest/least applicable rule is? Do the colony-nations have to return males seeking to "defect" (or run from their mistresses)? Do the other colony-nations recognize individual female claims to particular males (such a Femtopian's bondsman)?

11)Are the chastity cups purely to restrict access (and mount dildos)? Or do they have other functions? For example, you've mentioned they might have "teasing" or "punishment" modes. Do they do other things, to?

12)Are there "leash laws" in some colony nations? Does a male's collar display his mistress's name?

13)Do bondsmen (etc.) have to be owned by individuals? Or can they be owned by legal entites - corporations, trusts, governments?

An Insomniac Night Owl said...

I've also been thinking about the thrall-bondsman distinction - and it still seems like they are two distinct castes. For example, a thrall can own money/property, and his work obligations (for better or worse) are nebulous. The bondsman, though, owes a specific amount of labor & owns nothing. That's a fairly substantial difference right there - a thrall who gets downgraded to bondsmen loses all of his money and now has to do forced labor for his mistress.

And its problematic for the mistress, too. A mandatory shift takes away a lot of her discretion in the relationship. A businesswoman, for example, probably owns a number of bondsmen for her business (such as the night club/licking booth establisment in your first Chastity Planet story). However, with a mandatory shift, she can't keep a private lover for herself - and its gotta be frustrating having women continually try to buy your "husband" off you. And what about the woman who wants both a "husband" and a semi-disposable sex toy (say the sterotypical "pool-boy") - surely she wouldn't want them both at the same rank.

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