My offering features Cammy and Daddy from Gilded Cages. This is a prequel story set on Christmas Eve of their first Christmas together (approximately 4 years prior to GC). You do not need to have read GC first. Contains age play & daddy kink.
“It’s time to wake up, baby boy.”
I close my eyes even more tightly, trying not to let on that I’m already awake. I keep hoping that this is a dream, that I’ll wake up…
Somewhere. Somewhere that isn’t here, somewhere that isn’t home.
“I know you’re awake, Cammy.” His voice is soft, and I think he means for it to be soothing. All it does is cause my anxiety to rise all over again. “C’mon. Open your beautiful eyes for Daddy.”
He’s not my Daddy. I don’t have a Daddy, and I never have.
I have a father, and he doesn’t even like me very much. He never has, and now that I’ve run away…
I swallow hard around the lump in my throat.
I’ll be beyond salvation for sure now.
“Cammy, it’s okay. It’s really okay, baby boy. Today is a good day, remember? It’s Christmas Eve. We’re going to cheat a little and make cookies. But you have to get up. Only good boys get to have cookies.”
How could I have forgotten? The entire house is decorated, right down to a beautiful tree he had delivered, right when I was down the hall gagged and bound in a crib. They’d come and gone, and all I’d been able to do was cry.
Would I have screamed anyway? I’d come here because I’d wanted to. He’d invited me, and I…
I just hadn’t known what would happen.
“We’re starting small. All you have to do is open your eyes for me. That’s all. Can you do that for me?”
What’s the point of resisting? One way or another, I’ll end up opening my eyes. I do, and I stare into his.
He smiles. “There we go. It’s time to eat some lunch before we start making some sweets for my sweet boy.”
He’ll feed me baby food again, then he’ll give me another bottle. I haven’t had solid food since I was recovering from surgery, back when he still called me Camden — back when I wasn’t wearing diapers and didn’t sleep in a crib.
I close my eyes again, but it’s too late. He slides the side of the crib down, scoops me up into his strong arms, and carries me out of the room.
He sets me in the high chair, fussing over the straps that criss cross against my chest. I want to try to unfasten it, to try to slip from the chair and flee what should’ve been my rescuer. I like to think I would, too, if it wasn’t for the mittens keeping my hands balled up into fists.
I don’t know if I really would.
He slides the tray into place in front of me, and I’m left sitting helpless in an oversized high chair. I watch him as he moves around the kitchen now that I’m bound in place where he wants me.
Just like I expected, he gets two jars of baby food out, then scoops some powder into a bottle, adds milk to it, and shakes it. Vitamins, he told me the first time he prepared the bottle in front of me. I have to take his word for it, just like I have to take his word about so many things.
His hands are gentle as he unfastens the gag from around the back of my head, but I’m too afraid to spit the pacifier out of my mouth until he tells me I can. He smiles after a pause, his hand stroking my hair while he says, “Good boy. I’ll take your paci out for you, baby.” He carefully plucks it from my mouth, and I heave a sigh of relief.
I don’t speak, though.
“You’re being so good, Cammy,” he says warmly. “Just eat and drink well for Daddy, and you can be a big boy this afternoon. I got all sorts of cookie cutters and sprinkles and icing for my boy.”
I can’t remember ever making cookies with anyone, least of all using cookie cutters and making a mess with sprinkles. “What if I make a mess?” I blurt out.
He gives me a chastising look, but he answers while he opens the first jar of baby food, “Then Daddy will clean it up.”
“Just like that?”
The way I press must have him considering the questions more carefully, because this time, he doesn’t give me a look. “Little boys make messes, Cammy,” he says gently. “That’s what Daddies are for — to love their boys and to take care of them, which sometimes means cleaning up after them.”
There’s a horrible lump in my throat. Why couldn’t my father have ever felt that way about me? Why is it a man who seems determined to make a child of me the one who wants to reassure me?
He smooths his fingers through my hair. “I know it’s hard to accept, baby boy, but I want to give you everything you want.”
“I want to be an adult,” I say. My parents never let me have that sort of freedom, and now that I’ve run away, it seems like this man isn’t going to let me have it either.
“An adult,” he repeats, shaking his head. “Adults have all sorts of problems, Cammy. They have to deal with jobs and bills. Would you rather work paycheck to paycheck? Drown in student loans? You can have everything here, without any of the stress.”
“What if I want the stress?” I ask him, blinking back tears.
“If you’d ever dealt with it before, you’d know you don’t,” he chides me. “But that’s adult conversation, and that’s not the kind of conversation Daddy wants to have with his baby boy.”
He dips the spoon into the jar of baby food and holds it out to me.
I reach for the spoon without thinking about it, only to catch sight of the blue mittens holding my fingers closed. I exhale slowly, feeling his eyes on me, and I lower my hand back to my side.
“Open up for Daddy,” he coaxes me, lightly pressing the spoon against my lips and smearing some of the baby food on them.
Reluctantly, I open my mouth. The peaches aren’t bad. Really, none of the baby food has been bad. The first time, I expected it to taste awful, but I guess people don’t want to feed their babies slop.
Better for me that way, that’s for sure.
He feeds me then nudges the nipple of the bottle into my mouth. I don’t want to suck on it, but he’s giving me this calm, too patient look that tells me there’s no winning this battle. One way or another, I’m going to lose.
Fighting back a sob, I drink.
When the bottle’s finally empty, he clears the tray. “There we go. Now, I have the best sugar cookie recipe… Do you like sugar cookies, Cammy? I also got chocolate chips in case you prefer those.”
I stare at him. How can he go from feeding me from a bottle to asking what my cookie preference is?
“Well, we can always make both,” he says, unperturbed by my silence. “But Santa has to have his cookies, doesn’t he?”
“Santa isn’t real,” I mumble.
He arches a brow. “I’m going to pretend you didn’t just say that.”
“He isn’t!” I insist.
“You’re going to earn yourself a spanking if you keep telling lies, Cammy,” he warns me, but I’m having a hard time caring. This is ridiculous, all of it, and I want to break down. Does he really think baking cookies is going to bring me around? “And if you aren’t a good boy, Santa won’t bring you presents.”
What kind of presents does he have in mind? More onesies? More diapers? Stuffed animals?
That’s when I realize I don’t know what I’d ask for. My family has never been the type to tolerate wish lists. I got what I got, and I was grateful for it. The idea of being ungrateful for gifts doesn’t sit well with me, but at the same time, these aren’t gifts for me. They’re going to be gifts for who he wants me to be.
They’ll be gifts meant to turn me into what he wants me to be.
It’s a horrible realization.
“Now, let’s try this again,” he says, watching my expression. “What kind of cookies do you want to leave out for Santa, baby boy?”
I slump in the high chair. “Chocolate chip.”
“Good!” He lights up, his face flushed with pleasure like I just did something truly remarkable. “See? I knew you could do it.”
It was a simple choice, but he’s treating it like it was earth-shattering.
“We’re going to make cookies from scratch,” he says. He pulls out his phone, checking it before shoving it back into his pocket, and I freeze. I want to get my hands on it. I want to be able to call for help.
Just as quickly as the urge seizes me, I can’t help but make a sound that’s somewhere between a laugh and a sob. How would I call, given the mittens on my hands?
Who would I call?
He comes to me, touching my cheek. “It’s okay,” he tells me softly. “You’re thinking too much, Cammy. Just let yourself relax. You don’t have to make any big decisions, you don’t have any major responsibilities. Your biggest worry is whether you’re going to leave Santa chocolate chip or sugar cookies, and you’ve already decided. So you see? There’s nothing to worry about.”
If only it was that easy.
“Now, as much as I’d like to make these from scratch, I’m not a baker,” he admits. “So I got some cookie dough for us to roll out and shape.” He gets a basket from on top of the fridge, bringing it over to me. He rummages through and shows me a plastic cookie cutter of a gingerbread man, then holds up a bottle of sprinkles. “See? I told you I got you sprinkles.”
He returns to the table, setting it down.
“If you promise to be a very good boy and not try to scratch Daddy, I’ll take those mittens off for a little while,” he tells me.
It’s more freedom than I’ve had since he first diapered me, and I can’t help but crave it. I nod, and I feel like I’ve just set something in stone. I was taught not to lie, and I was taught not to go back on my word. I should be fine with doing either to this man, but it’s so deeply ingrained in me that I know I won’t.
“Good,” he says. He goes to the refrigerator and pulls out two rolls of dough, bringing them over and setting them next to the basket.
After he has everything arranged to his liking, he unties the mittens from around my wrists and pulls them off.
I breathe a sigh of relief as I stretch my fingers, staring at them like they’re entirely new. The ability to use my hands is something I’ve taken for granted, but not anymore. Never again.
“Do you want to sit at the table like a big boy?” he asks.
I nod again.
He shakes his head. “No. Tell me.”
“I want to sit at the table.”
“Tell me properly,” he prompts.
I close my eyes. I know what he wants, but I know every time I say it, it’ll drill it deeper into my subconscious. “Daddy,” I whisper. “Can I please sit at the table?”
His face lights up with his smile. It’s such a simple thing. He’s so easily pleased, but the flip side of that is that he gets stern just as easily. I don’t know how he can flip the switch the way he does, but it makes me uneasy.
“Yes, Cammy.” He pulls the tray back from the high chair and sets it aside, unstrapping me from the seat and helping me out. He settles me into a chair right in front of the cookie dough. “What do you think? Should we start with the sugar cookies?”
It doesn’t matter which ones we start with, but I nod.
He lays out a sheet of parchment paper and cuts a slice from the roll of sugar cookie dough, setting it in front of me. “Here we go,” he says. “Which cookie cutter do you want first?”
The whole situation is bizarre, but I pick the gingerbread man he’d shown he earlier. I cut out the cookie and set it on the nearby baking tray, and he smiles at me.
I make Santa hats and ornaments, elves and more gingerbread men, and by the time we’ve gone through all the dough, I’m smiling despite myself. I didn’t think it would be… fun, but it is.
As soon as I realize it, though, I frown again. There shouldn’t be anything enjoyable about this… but I can’t escape the fact that there is.
He doesn’t seem to notice my shift in moods. He gets up, putting the first tray of cookies into the oven. The timer chimes as he enters the time, then he comes back to me with a smile. “Now for the chocolate chip ones.”
I cut those out too, and by the time I’m done, the timer is beeping.
He trades them out. “There we go. Now we just have to wait for them to cool, and we can decorate them.”
“We?” I ask despite myself. I’ve been quiet while I’ve decorated, but that surprises me enough to ask about.
He studies me. “Is that all right? I thought we’d do this together, baby boy.”
I nod slowly, but I’m still surprised. He spends so much time with me, and I don’t know what to think of it. I keep expecting for him to turn this physical, and there’s a part of me that wonders how I’d respond if he tried to kiss me again.
Will he even try, considering he’s got me all dolled up this way? He keeps telling me that this has nothing to do with children, but he has me dressed like one. He hasn’t made a move, though, and I’ve started to think he’s going to keep his word.
It’s a dangerous slope to be on, because it means I’m starting to trust him. I don’t want to trust him.
He sets out the sprinkles and icing while we wait for the sugar cookies to finish cooling, having a one-sided conversation about how he thinks he’ll decorate his part. It’s soothing in a way, and by the time he brings back the cooled cookies on a plate, I’m relaxed.
“What does the gingerbread man put on his bed?” he asks me as he starts to carefully line his with icing.
I blink at him. “I don’t know.”
“A cookie sheet.” The answer startles a laugh out of me, and he smiles. “I have more of those,” he says.
In that moment, I feel closer to him than I have anyone in my life, and I don’t know why. The shared humor is just so new to me, and I don’t understand how, despite everything, I can still laugh.
“Cookie sheets or bad jokes?” I ask, shyly. I half-expect him to backhand me for the question, but he only chuckles.
“Both. I bought cookie sheets just for today. Just for you.”
I don’t know how I feel about that. The care he takes with me is still so foreign, and I’m not used to it.
“Why do you have to do this? Why can’t we just be… friends?” I ask.
He sighs. The mood instantly sobers, and I’m mentally kicking myself. “Cammy… Can you just accept this for one night and one day? Please? Can we get through Christmas without you doubting me? Just… accept it.”
“I don’t know,” I tell him.
“You were having so much fun with the cookies. Then you started overthinking. You don’t need to overthink, baby boy. Just let me take care of you.”
It feels like so much for him to ask, yet I know he doesn’t think it’s much at all.
“Let’s finish decorating,” he urges me. “Then we can watch some Christmas movies and cuddle on the couch. I’m not expecting anything from you, Cammy. Just for you to relax and enjoy yourself.”
Usually I’d be in church, on both Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. I wouldn’t be making cookies, preparing to watch movies — least of all cuddling. It’s like touch will pass on some horrible disease in my family, and it’s been one of those things that I’ve started to crave. I don’t want to admit it, and I’d never tell this man, but it’s something I need.
“All right,” I agree in a small voice.
We finish decorating the cookies, and by the end of it, I’m even smiling again.
“Pick two for Santa,” he says.
This time, I don’t argue. I choose a Santa face that I messily decorated despite my every effort to keep it clean and neat, then I pick out his pristine reindeer. He sets those two on a plate and covers it with plastic wrap, setting it aside before putting the rest of them in a tin.
He cleans the kitchen quickly and efficiently, and I watch him. He doesn’t seem concerned that I’m going to get up and try to run — and he’s right. Where would I go? When he picks me up, I lean against him, trying to take his advice and just let go.
I don’t know if I can.
But I think I’m willing to try.
The End… for now
Enjoyed this short? Please leave a comment below. If you haven’t read Gilded Cages, it follows the introduction of a “puppy” to their dynamic about 4 years later. Tarnished Cages, the sequel to GC, is expected to be out in mid-to-late January! Subscribe to my newsletter or join my Facebook group for more updates.
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