An elderly couple have written a book detailing their sex contract signed in the early 1980s in a real-life 50 Shades of Grey scenario.
He and She, the anonymous couple now aged 93 and 88 respectively who live on the west coast of the US, have written The Mistress Code, based on intimate conversations recorded during the early years of their affair.
Their sex contract came about after an educated woman, with a successful career and three children by her ex-husband, signed a document with her wealthy lover that set rules and regulations to their relationship.
The contract stipulated that he would provide her with a home and an income, while she would provide her services as a mistress, including "all sexual acts as requested, with suspension of historical, emotional, psychological disclaimers".
The couple found that they were happier than they had ever been in traditional relationships. The Mistress Contract features their discussions of why their arrangement led to such contentment - with recordings taken while at home, in restaurants and in bed.
Discussing the book and their contract, the couple said:
He: This goes back to a period where women, by being compliant with male wishes, received substantial rewards. They had a position, security. It was an even exchange.
She: This is still true, but the women now wish to eliminate from the exchange all assumption that their bodies are part of the trade. I understand this. They are bargaining from a weak position and would rather not.
He: Modern marriage, or modern living together, doesn't really offer much in the way of an exchange. What does a female get out of being sexually equal to a male. That's not what a sexual union is about. It just doesn't work.
She: Women may spend all their time making decisions and none, or not much, enjoying [them]. Still, the assumption is that this period will pass and men and women will, sometime in the future, have a more easeful lovemaking.
He: It hasn't with us. I have been with you for many years and have never entered your bed reluctantly.
He: Sometimes, when you are enraged, I have wanted to kill you or throw you over the balcony or lock you in the closet. But no matter how enraged you've been, you've always had the wit to compose your differences, and we've never failed to end up snuggled in one another's arms."
A number of reviews of the book have compared it to EL James' 50 Shades of Grey but publisher Hannah Westland, from Serpent's Tail, dismissed comparisons.
"The Mistress Contract is a book of real conversations between two people having a relationship with unusual rules," she told IBTimes UK.
"It isn't erotic fiction, and it isn't full of saucy sex scenes, but it is explicit - it's two clever, honest people discussing their sexual, intellectual, and emotional relationship with one another. For these reasons, I think it's much more thrilling than 50 Shades of Grey."