You’re right, it varies greatly depending on the partner.
Our typical spanking list goes as follows:
Wear comfy things to keep warm if the room is cold —> Set up recording equipment —> Procrastinate until I actually have to get a spanking —> Be spanked —> Picture taking —> smoke a bowl/Eat a sammich/Cry about it/have sex/playSOMEMUTHAFUCKINVIDYAGAAAMES. Aftercare isn’t necessarily about curling up with your partner, you can kick his ass in Halo and still bond/care for each other just as much.
Advice- Don’t take after someone else’s protocol. Do it, want it, experience it the way that you would like to with your partner. Perhaps there is dress up or tie downs involved, perhaps sex first! Obviously the Dom is in charge to a degree, but the two of you must talk and adapt to both of yours play preferences so that you both of you really enjoy a scene.
Life is a like a box of chocolates, you can always eat a different one first and still wind up eating the whole damn box in two minutes flat like the next guy. I thought that metaphor was going places, but instead I just want chocolate.