The Desire to Restrain
Charles Bukowski once said, "there is enough treachery, hatred violence absurdity in the average human being to supply any given army on any given day." When I look into the world, that is all I can make out. I see people who hate the other for a happiness attained through the ones they loved. Perhaps they hate that individual because they are not brave enough to express themselves that way? Perhaps they hate the happy couple simply because it is easier for them to loathe the lives others live instead of take a look at their own? It is truly heartbreaking!
But regardless of their hate, I cannot hate them. I feel pity and confusion for their distaste towards me and many other out there. I feel pity because I know them. I can see into their lives, and I see a sadness and loneliness that echoes back at me through hatred and projection. why does it matter to you who I love? why do you hate who I am? Perhaps you can only hate other people because you hate yourself?
Within society is a desire to restrain; to silence, and to ignore. It is heartbreaking, for I see so many crying out to the world for peace, love, and empathy. I see children crying to the system because their parents reject them for simply trying to be forthcoming and expressive. I see couples crying to the world because they are hated upon, hurt, and even killed just because of the way they wish to live their own lives. I can feel myself crying deep down to the globe, begging the world the just listen. Stop restraining us, and jut listen.
Loved by Moon
Girl grew by Sun.
It was his rays by which she learned,
His light that warmed her.
Watched her as she played,
Heated her as only Sun could.
But Girl became Woman.
Sun saw her now with only desire.
His light begun to burn;
And rays once soft-
Branded his Name upon her.
Woman grew weary of Sun
And though he was watchful by day,
He lay to rest by night.
It was then that Woman found safety.
For, by night came Moon.
Rising when Sun lay down.
She carried not scorching brands -
But cool light and soft loving.
Woman fell for Moon.
How could she not?
Moon was beautifully made;
And She treasured Woman.
Moon, in care of Woman,
Took the brands from Sun
Calmed and washed them away.
Woman was loved by Moon.
Woman longed to be with Moon by day
To lay with Her in velvet night.
For in velvet night Woman was loved by Moon.
A love more pure than any Sun could give.
When Sun would rise, Woman lay hidden;
She feared his harsh light and burning desire.
But as she grew she forgot the ways of Sun,
And began to trust him once again.
Her forgetfulness was her downfall.
For Sun would never change;
He forced his light upon Woman,
And scorched her treasured soul.
Sun left woman to die
When Moon arose for Woman, She wept.
Her tears falling upon the velvet of night
She held Woman with Her pure light
And Woman, Her light diminished,
Pride is Constant
Suddenly the world seems a little less dark. The clouds seem content, people seem welcoming. I love pride month, it feels homely. But through years I’ve come to realize, it shouldn’t just be a month. It should be forever. I should be able to go out with a rainbow shirt everyday, and not feel like I’m advertising my sexuality. I’m not celebrating something that only lasts a month. My love is constant, never-ending, different. Too different to be normal, so we get a month to be considered “like the rest.” I want to be considered normal constantly, like my love for the same sex is constant. I never asked for a month, though I appreciate it. I just asked to not be so isolated. However, that doesn’t mean I won’t go to parades or celebrate. I love pride month, just wish I was treated with that respect and lovingness all year.
I've come out to my mother a couple of times. I began questioning my sexuality quite young, like many chronically online children born in the early 2000s, so throughout the years, I have used about 30 different labels for myself. First bisexual, then pansexual, then back to straight, then queer, I used he/him pronouns for about 2 hours in the 9th grade, but recently my identity had sort of plateaued. It had been a couple of years since I had come out to my mother, and last she or I had checked I was identifying as queer. Just queer. She was not aware that I used they/them pronouns because the idea of explaining nonbinary pronouns to my know-it-all white liberal mother seemed like some sort of fascinatingly unique form of torture, but she knew enough for me. Queer was easy. It didn't come with any sort of subtext or assumption like bisexual or pansexual. It required absolutely no explanation. But about a month ago I realized it was a lie. After using the word queer as a catch-all identifier to mean that I liked everyone regardless of gender, for 3 years, I realized something: I am a lesbian.
My mother, bless her heart, will swear all day and night that she supports gay people. She will tell you all about her son, my little brother, who is trans and bi, and how he is on hormones and how proud she is of him. and She would be telling the truth. When my brother came out I was genuinely shocked by how quickly both of my parents got on board, starting using his new name, and made the switch to he/him pronouns. But you would never have known how easy it was for my mother to support him from our relationship. When I came out to her the first time she told me she loved me but advised me to keep it quiet when it came to family events or gatherings, because "no one needs to know your personal business."
I thought this time would be different. I don't live with her anymore, it had been years since id updated her on my sexuality, I thought maybe lesbian would be easier for her to understand than queer because it was just one rule: no guys. So I called her. And I told her.
And the line was quiet for a moment, and then she said "why?"
There was something familiar about the reflection in the window. Jackson had stopped to admire the display of pearls in window of Soho’s Fine Jewelry. His breath frosted on the window, and he reached up to polish it away, when he spotted the face. The one he’d loved since he’d first noticed him across the gymnasium. The one he’d known was destined to be part of his life the second their eyes met.
It couldn’t be! Orin was dead. There was no way. He’d died in Istanbul. He had his ashes in an urn that sat on the mantel over the fireplace in his slick comfortable condo on fifth. He’d been searched out by the Turkish embassy. The ambassador himself had told him of Orin’s tragic heroic death. He’d saved a child from death in the middle of the oldest section of Istanbul. The child of a government official. He had traded his humble life as a travel reporter for that of a toddler who had run out in the path of a delivery truck.
Orin usually took him along on every adventure. Except those places where being gay was frowned upon. The middle east had been a problem for centuries. They’d had an argument that simmer for the week before Orin was to leave. He’d been so angry at him for going into a hot bed of homophobic hatred. What if someone discovered the truth about his orientation?
Jackson glanced up to the reflection, crystal clear over the shimmering orbs of diversely colored pearls. The creations were sensual. Long snakes of palest pink gleaming globes, scattered among strands of equally opalescent black, white, and champagne. Fat earrings, baroque rings, every color lived together in a harmonious display of elegance. Pearls had always been one of his favorite stones.
There it was again. Did he dare to turn around? He had to know, was this an illusion borne of his deep desperation to tell his love, the man who had completed him, I love you one more time? Or was it really Orin. It had been seven years. Years of regret, of loneliness, of recrimination. How had he let him go at the airport without telling him to stay safe? To come home. That he loved him beyond any silly little disagreement.
The face came closer. There was the mole, the little adorable mole at the juncture of nostril and cheek. Shivers ran down his neck, and goosebumps stood on his thighs and forearms. His heart raced and he couldn’t get his breath. He felt like his head was floating somewhere well above his shoulders.
He clenched the stone window ledge, his knuckles white with strain.
“Jackson? Don’t pass out.”
The sardonic tone had Jackson whirling. With a lightning feint he slapped Orin leaving a bright red imprint across his long narrow face. Individual finger imprints glowed crimson on his cheek between the edge of his goatee and his ear.
“Well, that’s a fine welcome,” Orin didn’t retaliate.
“How long have you been here? How dare you be in the city and not find me first! How dare you go and die on me. How are you even here! I have your ashes on my mantel” Jackson’s questions hissed out. Anger sizzled across the small span between them. Orin was only an inch or two taller than him, but his shoulders were muscular. His chest a dream to caress.
“You’ve gotten so thin you haven’t been taking care of yourself.” Shock radiated from Orin, as he reached out to clasp his lover’s hands. “I’m sorry.”
“The ambassador said you were a hero. You died saving a child the greatest gift a mother could ask. Yours never recovered she’s gone.” Jackson spewed his grief indiscriminately. Orin’s mother has been his own after his parents disowned him.
Orin cringed. “I’ve been to her grave. I’ve left her favorite pink tulips for her.”
“You could’ve called, you should have known.”
“I’m sorry, my love,” Orin stroked Jackson’s hollow cheek. He was so thin the flirtatious dimple he lived to see, was gone. His cheek bones stretched the skin on his face so taut, it was all but transparent. His skull and jawbones revealed as if he were already a skeleton.
Jackson leaned into Orin. “I’m so angry, and so in love. I’m sorry about our fight before you left.”
Orin put an arm around his shoulders. Deep in the artist’s mecca of New York City the pedestrians parted around them, like they were a boulder in the middle of a swift flowing stream. Everyone intent on their own lives, they could have been alone in the deepest woods of Canada.
“You changed your number, and you weren’t at our old apartment. I couldn’t find you when I arrived. I’ve been searching for you for two weeks since I got back, and you were gone without a trace. I found out my mother passed away from the family who bought her co-op. I was lucky to find the lawyer she used to draw up her will. He’s almost eighty now, but he still is part of his family’s practice.”
“Why weren’t you back sooner?” accusation riddled Jackson’s question.
“I didn’t start to remember who I was until I saw a display of pearls. The big amazing pearls that come from lagoons in the South Pacific. The ones you were talking about getting for the next jewelry collection you were designing. Remember? I was going to bring you some of the baroque pinks and blacks we’d found in a supplier’s catalog. I was going to combine buying with my travel log.”
“Then why was I left to grieve, why didn’t they come to find me?” Jackson twisted the gold and platinum ring he wore. Orin had started them walking toward the Starbucks at the corner.
“I had to change the listing on my passport. You were my emergency contact and not spouse, we were going to get married after I got back. It was the last trip to a country with such archaic beliefs.”
“We fought about it. We’d been living together for so long. You’ve been part of me for over twenty years. I couldn’t let you go.”
“Sit my love I’ll get us a couple of lattes.” Orin watched as he slid into the back booth where they spent so many intimate Sunday afternoons.
Jackson sat with his elbows on the table, his hands over his face. His shoulders slumped forward. He felt a bit like time had tilted and his world with it. His Orin was there, but the empty hole inside refused to close.
“You know how I found you?” Orin asked as he slid a peppermint latte in front of Jackson. He put his own chai tea down and said, “I’ll be right back.”
“Here’s some banana bread.” He dropped onto the bench and slid across until his hard thigh snuggled against Jackson’s. “Eat!”
One tear slipped over Jackson's right lower eyelid, slipping into the crevice beside his lips and hanging for an endless moment on his chin before it plopped onto the table.
“You haven’t forgotten.” Jackson whispered his heart tumbled into love and a tiny spark of hope lit there. Nothing had changed, and everything was changed. He might be able to design that pearl collection. He stared at the banana bread and picked it up in trembling fingers. It slipped through them and plopped back onto the grey white china.
Orin broke a piece off the corner of the moist slice and staring into Jackson eyes raised it to his mouth. “I’m back. I’m going to take care of you. I’m not leaving again.”
“I lost mom three years ago. She started fading the day they told her you’d been killed. Why did they do that?” his disbelief and the simmering anger reared themselves in his narrowed blue eyes even as his mouth watered. The first time he’d tasted his favorite treat in seven long years. The first time he’d been back to the Starbucks, rife with memories.
“Better to have knowledge of heroism, and a death of honor according to the doctor. I was taken to a hospital with a severe head injury and wasn’t expected to survive. When I finally came out of the coma, I had no memory of who I was. It took me years to relearn how to talk, to take care of myself. I had to have someone with me at all times because my memory was short term. Until the day they noticed I reached for the administrator’s pearls. She had a double strand of glorious champagne pearls. Big ones, almost a third of an inch in diameter.”
“They started taking me on short excursions. To the strip mall next to the government home where I was living. To the gemstone convention. Then there was an auction of antique jewelry collections, and they took me to look at the displays. There was a baroque black pearl, set in an intricate lace work gold filigree brooch. I said one word, Jackson.”
“Pearls brought you back to me?” wonder brought more tears swimming, threating to stream silently in witness to love reclaimed. Jackson savored the next piece of banana bread Orin fed him.
“Pearls. And that’s how I knew where I’d find you. I scoured the stores till I found out Soho Fine Jewelry was having a pearl extravaganza. I knew you’d be by. You could never resist studying them any chance you had. I knew I’d find you here.” Orin’s passionate declaration had heads turning.
“I almost didn’t come. It’s the last day before they’re selling the necklaces in a charity auction. I haven’t done anything in design since I lost you. I’ve been working as a repair specialist in midtown, not a block from where I live. I can’t look at pearls or mother of pearl without seeing your face. The only reason I let you go was because of the pearls you were going to bring back.” Bitter regret, and self loathing stiffened Jackson against Orin’s side.
“And now they’ve brought us together again. Forgive yourself. I’ve forgiven myself. I left you without a word too. I woke to my remembering knowing I’d left you with nothing but bitter regrets. I had to fight to come home. Thank the fates, it was a wealthy man’s child I saved. Her name was Pearl.”
I know this is a classic story, but I can’t help but tell it again. Because from my point of view, it wasn’t a story, or something to gawk at when a reporter decided it was newsworthy. I worked so hard for this, and the sacrifices were gargantuan. Good God that sounds so trite, over dramatized, and otherwise like I’m trying to make more of it than it was.
So, let me put you in my shoes. I always liked the girly things. Fashion dolls, oh boy, I loved my sister’s Barbie. Mom’s collection of eighteen inch fashion dolls, you know the ones, with their intricate clothes demonstrating what was popular from centuries past. Their gorgeous hats, and the gloves they wore. Undressing them all one afternoon, had me quietly fascinated for over three hours. But it wasn’t such fun when Mom came into the room where she displayed them and found I’d recombined their clothes to accent a 1920’s flapper with an overly flouncy hat from Victorian London.
I thought they were far more interesting the way I had them dressed. But mom, well that’s a whole other story. I couldn’t sit for a week.
“Why can’t you be a normal boy and play with your cars, and build things with the Lego blocks? Annie is pissed with you. Where are all the shoes for her Barbie? Leave her stuff alone!” Every word was punctuated with another smack of the wooden spoon she used equally on each of us. I can’t complain that I didn’t deserve it. Not because I was a boy playing with girl’s things, but because I didn’t respect their things. It took me a while to learn I couldn’t play with whatever I saw. Don’t touch, was my cue to find a way.
Never mind that though. The point was, when Annie started playing with makeup, I was more than happy to be the one she experimented on. I stole her training bra, stuffing it with face cloths, admiring myself in the three way mirror mom used for her clients. She did custom alterations and sewing for ladies all over the neighborhood.
And I salivated over the cute guy on the cover of mom’s romance novels. I dreamed of being the girl he was holding. I couldn’t understand why I was supposed to be interested in cars, rifles, playing cops and robbers with the other boys. Can you tell I grew up in a very traditional place? Of course, you need to understand I’m almost 60 now, and things are so much better for us confused types.
It took me years to understand I wasn’t gay. No, it was in the third round of therapy, when the doc I was seeing asked me, “When you think of sex, and fantasize are you male or female?” that someone finally clued into what was wrong.
“I’m always a girl. I’ve never had sex. It always felt wrong. I’ve tried to kiss a girl, and it turned me off so bad, I had to beg off as if feeling sick from something I ate,” I told him.
“Let’s explore this a little more,” his voice was completely neutral, there was no judgement there. He was a treasure, and when he passed away, I was so proud to stand in my black dress and high heels at the edge of his grave. To throw my rose on his coffin when his family buried him, and say a prayer, thanking God for this enlightened man, who was a triumph of all the compassion he’d shown me during our long association.
I ended up telling him about cross dressing as a teen. Halloween was my favorite day of the year. I had pictures from the time I was eight. Mom had them in my album. I was the best looking girl. I was the princess, the white witch, fairy queen, and in high school, the guys at the dance, didn’t figure out who I was until one of them tried to get too cozy, and found out the hooker wasn’t a girl.
The disturbing notion that I wasn’t in the right body, didn’t surface until head shrinker number three, started digging into my feelings and confusion in an in depth session of visits when I was in my thirties. That first question, about my fantasy life opened a torrent of misery.
Sex changes were in the very early stages of development. Did I want to try it, and did I want to go through hormone therapy to grow my own boobs, or get implants? Since I hated my gross beard, which I had to shave three times a day to keep the five o’clock shadow away, and I was hirsute enough to be very obviously male, hormones were the right choice. I loved the changes.
I grew breasts and lost the beard. I like to imagine what I went through was somewhat like puberty for a girl. Which looking back, I envied Annie to death for having the body I should have had. I love her to death, she never ever thought of me as weird even when she helped me with my makeup. She was the one who found size 13 high heels for me.
Don’t ask me what I went through trying to explain it to dad. “You have a cock and balls, get used to it, boy.” I can still hear the disgust. He never hugged me again, he wouldn’t even let me hold his hand when he was dying.
I moved to Europe. My psychiatrist put me in contact with a clinic that was working on developing a surgical procedure for transforming sexually misplaced psyches into the correct body. To put it bluntly, changing males to females on the exterior, to match what their brains have always known. It wasn’t smart to make it that obvious way back then.
I was part of so many firsts. I warn anyone one who is in the same boat as I was, make sure you have a true expert in the field if you want to go down this road. I swear some of the clinics out there are merely trying to mutilate us and say you got what you deserve. I’m sorry, what kind of attitude is that? I’m no less human than you are.
Why this confession? I’m going to my high school reunion. I wonder if anyone will recognize good old goof off, Graham Oakley as Gail Aniston? I always loved Jennifer Aniston’s looks, and believe it or not, I wrote to her, asking if she would be offended if I used her last name for my new one. I was curious about what she might think. That as I’ve said before, is a whole other story.
I’m a comfortably curvaceous woman now. You’d never tell me from dozens of other grandmothers. Forty pounds or so overweight, enough muffin top, that tight jeans are not a good idea, I’ll put on a loose fitting silk gown. I’ll wear the heels, and bring the perfectly accessorized costume jewelry, purse and yes, hat. I’ve always had a thing for the outlandish hat.
The color will match my eyes, my hair, now a thick fall of black with startling silver streaks, will be loose over my shoulders. It’s my best feature. Exactly curly enough to lay in waves and show off deep blue highlights from the reflections of the inevitable Disco Ball which would be in the center of the dance floor. Disco was all the rage when we were in school.
I am me now. A woman. I don’t care if I ever have a lover or get married. I could remain single now that I’m true to what I know. Thank you to all those who believe God doesn’t always get it right. Thank God is all I can say. Thank God I can say no to searching for ways to fit into the normal cage my father constructed for me.
You ask about mom? She admitted to me, the other day, she knew there was something wrong. But she never put a finger on it, and truly accepted it, until she saw me at my sister’s second wedding as her matron of honor. She said there was a rightness about it, she should have seen in all those pictures from Halloween’s past. She hugged me, and said, “Please change your middle name to my maiden name. I’d like to have some piece of me, in your new life.”
I am Gail Anne Smith Aniston. And if you have questions about my transformation, I’ll answer them. Blogging is part of my new way of life. Helping others who have been trying to find their way through the land mines of sex change is my mission.
Love you all.
Just to add a few more to the list:
Wiin: Ojibwe. He/she him/her.
Wiya: Cree. Broad 3rd person term that can refer to people of either gender, animals, or objects. I thought this was an interesting one because it is so different from the way we catergorize things.
Two-Spirit: Is the general aboriginal term for a person with both a masculine and feminine spirit. Called “winkt” in Lakota.
For My Spawn Points & Wombmates
- responsible adult ("RA" for short)
- meal planner
- diaper dealer
- DNA donor
- spawn point
- anklebiter (if younger)
- yardstick (if older)
- kind soul
- fellow stranger
- air sharer
- dear (works for everyone)
- love (works for everyone)
- young one
*Cheat: Steal them from other languages
Malay: orang, kawan
Bengali: সে (şé)
Telugu: -ది (-di)
Chechen: иза (iza)
Bashkir: ул (ul)
Kazakh: ол (ol)
Mongolian: тэр (ter)
Uyghur: ئۇ (u)
Tatar: ул (ul)
Georgian: ის (is)
Tibetan: ཁོང (khong)
Persian: او (u)
Cherokee: Ꭰ- (a-), Ꭴ- (u-)
Comanche: iʔ, maʔ, oʔ, uʔ
So English lacks the gender neutral options other languages have already. Just pick the ones you like and "borrow" them like the English do with everything else in the world.
- Use their name (and work on remembering it!)
- Use their nickname (with permission)
- Use their title/profession ("doctor" "professor" "student" "cadet")
pronoun (he/him/his/she/her/hers): ze/zim/zis
parent (mom/mother/dad/father): zether, zed (I recently found out from batmaninwuhan that a zether is a musical instrument, and I feel like that just makes the word that much cooler)
term of respect (ma'am/sir): sher/zar (at some point some kid used to call me "sher" and I decided that I liked it as a gender neutral term)
general title (Miss/Ms./Missus/Mrs./Mister/Mr.): This one I'm really not sure about. I kind of like "Master." That seems like something that can be used across all genders, and it's a word that already exists, which makes it easier to be adapted to nonbinary purposes.
I forgot to include this in the challenge, but if you want, you can do something for "guy" or "girl." Mine would be "no-bi." I sort of like the way it flows.
Let me know what you think!
the shortest distance between two points
is often unbearable
― Charles Bukowski
The door opens slowly, and I stare at her heavy expression, green sparks like small flames crackling somewhere on the edges, concern mixed with agitation. She gazes at me, noticing the tired face and the strain of my muscles, the vibrations that seem to almost sweat out through my skin and pores. You can pretty much taste the saltiness of the calm fierceness sticking to my veins.
“Ah, I see that Ramsey delivered my message. There was no reason to rush, though. I still have some left.”
She shakes her head slowly, eyes narrowing, making it quite clear that my surface answers don’t faze her much as she swiftly moves right past them, throwing away all the unwanted layers I cover myself with so well. Usually, that is. With her, it’s a bit harder. But maybe it’s another reason, why I gravitate towards her so much. It was a relief at times for someone to see past your elegantly sculptured deceit, covering all the filth and mayhem that you choose not to show for the public view. I valued and respected the way how her penetrating eyes challenged me. And on a few rare occasions, causing me to actually care about something other than reaching my goals and satisfying the delightful selfish needs.
“You didn’t take it again. Did you?”
I gaze at her, something in me crackling low like burning wood in the dead of winter. Flames licking the logs and consuming them slowly, for now just tasting and showing their playful tongues.
I both sign and mouth it to her in a thick, almost syrupy whisper, my energy all over the place. Mind a bit confused as to why my body seems to be on fire, and not from the harm inflicted on my hands but something deep within me that wants to get out. My hands - a dark smile covers my face as a tiny flicker of madness colors my blood in such a pleasing way - those I hardly felt, if anything, they were a motivation to keep going, to break whatever was damaged in my wiring. I watch her staring at me, eyebrows furrowed as her irritation seems to blend with my unstable energy. It’s a risk for her to even be here, and she knows it, yet it doesn’t stop her or make her back away. She steps closer to me, and I try not to move everything in me so heightened.
“You think I don’t know, but I feel you.”
Her energy both sinks into me and bounces off invisible walls as I answer with a calm that could make buildings collapse.
“This time, I was almost sure that I could beat it on my own. I was getting close.”
She sends me an intense stare that says I have glided over her words. Something breaks through my blazing mind and brings unexpected softness to my voice. Her presence alone seeming to soothe the things lingering under my skin. As if bursts of dark holes on the surface of the sun. Exploding every second, yet invisible to the mortal eye. Too far away to touch.
“Yes, I know that you feel me, as I sense you, deeply.”
“And still, you would risk my anger.”
She signs slowly, an intense, heavy stern feel to it. And still, her words almost painting themselves like a little masterpiece as her fingers dance before my eyes. Such elegant motions, even when her soul blazes with fierceness. My state softens some more as I smile and gaze at her delicate features. The long blond hair that resembles silk and lays like a curtain against her back, this time not twisted into a braid but instead hanging loosely and pinned at the sides so they won’t fall to her face. She’s wearing a pair of pale green pants that end above her ankles, and a creamy shirt without any sleeves, a strip of soft skin showing between the bottom of it and the line of her trousers, a pair of white simple ballerinas, hugging her feet softly. The entire outfit kept in the 1950s, girl next door kind of style, though I know that she doesn’t plan it that way, just everything about her seeming to belong to a different era. Everything on her seems old-fashioned, even the worn-out brown leather bag that hangs across the slender shoulder.
“Your anger, my dear?”
“Don’t be so amused, I had more than once stoked your fires.”
My eyes follow hers, feeling the intensity of her energy. Like a baby tiger roaring, its claws sharper than you could ever expect. Never underestimate the stripes on a beast, no matter how innocent they might seem. I think and my hand automatically reaches out and lays on the side of her waist as I pull her into me, breath tickling her skin as I lean in, whispering, my eyes on her.
That was a different kind of thrill.
My hands are busy, but I know that she can read the words from my lips, a smile spreading as I see her reaction. She blushes from the sudden closeness, yet is determined to make me listen first, a nearing lecture already written all over her face - a stubborn creature not fooled by my gentle distractions. Well, maybe not so gentle - I think as she frees herself from my hold, putting my hands sternly by my sides. She was the only one that I let do such a thing. If it had been anyone else, I would have pounced at her, finding many more pleasing ways to spend time with her than a conversation.
She points to the sofa, and I obey very slowly, as it wasn’t in my nature to do so. Yet, I made just a few rare exceptions. She was one of them. I sit down, observing as she busies herself in the kitchen, preparing everything needed for the brew. The smell of rich herbs soon filling the air as she brings me a tall glass that I usually use for coffee. She catches my stare as I take it from her and shrugs, lifting her hands impatiently.
“It doesn’t matter what it is in or how I serve it to you, just as long as you drink it.”
I nod gently, sipping the warm liquid.
She frees herself slowly from her leather bag and lets it slip to the ground while her eyes never leave mine, and then sits on the sofa, making herself comfortable. Lifting her legs and sitting crosslegged towards me, all the while watching me thoughtfully as our eyes fight some unspoken battle. Her stare is calm yet intense in a way, with beautiful orbs filled with a mixture of blue waters and emerald fields, as if some of her energy was always drifting out. I know that she has a lot of thoughts roaming around in her mind, but I’m also aware that she will only speak of some.
“Do you feel better now?”
“I thought you sensed me just fine on your own.”
She grabs my elbow firmly until a sigh leaves my lips. I finish drinking and put the glass down. We stare at each other for a moment until I release her hold from me and put that hand to my cheek. This does not faze her as she is familiar with this gesture. I have known her for years, and we have been through a lot together. My eyes follow her as I sign with assurance.
“Yes, I feel better. Thanks to you.”
She smiles gently but then lets out an unstable rustle of air, the expression on her face changing to sternness as she removes her hand from my cheek, a strange kind of longing appearing in me from the lack of that touch. I hurriedly shake it off just before she communicates.
“You have to take those herbs so you can be safe. I need you to be safe.”
“I am safe.”
She takes my slightly burned hand and lifts it, sending me a look.
You call that safe?
She mouths, and I shake my head, suddenly annoyed again.
“I can handle myself and have been doing it for years without any help, a few scratches and bruises won’t stop me or make any difference.”
Instantly, I can see that I have said the wrong thing as her stare becomes concerned, almost hearing her heart flutter in a pained way as she signs gently.
Very slowly, I inhale, trying to keep myself calm.
“It’s nothing. Just some of my energy bounced off the wall and decided to make me as
My hands freeze in midair, uncertain for a moment, but then I continue, too tired to beat around the bush.
“W h e r e ?”
Her stare becomes even more concerned as she tries to inspect my body, all the bare surface she can see. I’m wearing a pair of white, skinny jeans and a dark blue top that holds itself only on two thin double straps, a delicate cotton bra peeking out from under it, the color of it matching my jeans. She touches my forearms, shoulders, then checks my elbows, her stare slightly frantic. I wait until she looks up at me and shake my head, trying not to concentrate on how her fingers feel on my blazing skin, and lift my shirt slowly, exposing my right side. Her quiet, almost silent gasp seems to fill the entire room as she reaches out her hand, gently touching the dark, nearly black bruises mixed with a deep blue shade that matches my shirt - an inside joke that I amused myself with today after examining myself in the mirror this morning. I hiss through my teeth as her touch both causes me pain and unexplainable soft pleasure. She looks up at me carefully.
“I can help you heal.”
Once again she touches the skin against my ribs and side, eyes glowing delicately as green flashes around the center of her pupils. I stop her just before the energy begins to move out of her, putting my hand over hers firmly.
No. Don’t. It motivates me. I need that if I want to fight.
She nods slowly, knowing how my nature worked and that there was no point in fighting against it. Instead, she puts my hand down on her thigh and strokes the bruised skin with her thumb and fingertips. God, the feeling of that - my eyes close, senses both calmer and swimming in irregular flames, restrains gradually snapping one by one. My eyes flash with light that reflects in her surprised stare. No hesitation, just the dark matter I breathe you in with. My body shifts, taking the most desirable position to what I want to do with her. Grabbing her hips by the sides, I pull her into me, spreading her legs and wrapping them around my back, hearing her silent gasp.
This is not a good idea.
She mouths slowly, putting her hands, palms down on the sofa, leaning backward, and trying to find some balance in the sudden chaos that I was causing.
The question leaves my lips, and she trembles slightly, feeling the vibrations from my voice.
Because we put our past behind us.
No. We just silently moved on as my life and destination, were chosen for me.
And nothing has changed since then.
She puts her legs down without any sound and shifts back. I stay in place, even though every part of me is burning alive, raging for her. But I am strong in many ways and can be still even as the world stands in flames. My chest expands and moves inwards as I watch her. Even in my darkest hour, I would never do anything that she wouldn’t want to be done to her, even if I constantly yearn.
Some things have. Something in me, it calls for you again.
She gazes at me, not scared or put off by my actions or words, just carefully processing everything that’s going on, including my touch on her, a blend of energies moving inside of her. I can feel it. It’s this deep rich flavor, so pleasing in its base. She shifts even further to speak with me with her hands and gestures. To be louder, more in control as she wants to be understood with clarity, leaving a mark in other people’s minds. She wants to mark her voice in my thoughts.
“And I heard you, that’s why I’m here.”
I lean forward against her, inhaling the smell of her skin, my hair tickling her arms. And then gaze at her as her hands once again rest on the sofa.
To help me with the situation.
Her lungs start to move a bit faster just before she mouths to me.
But that’s not all.
Of course, it isn’t.
My hand glides past her thigh slowly, moving from her knee, blue light sipping through my fingertips, leaving soft electric currents playing with her skin, with a craving body. Her back arches slightly as my hand slides up, teasing her, sending new waves to penetrate her fibers, the other hand sinking into the sofa by her side, head leaning against her chest as I listen, waiting for a familiar sound. New sparks leave the fingers that slide excruciatingly slow to the inside lines of her curves. Hunger growing with each small fraction that I move forward, deeper into her structure. Just one more tender touch and suddenly, I hear it, a subtle noise erupting from the lungs, moving up and escaping her mouth... an eco of a moan. I feel the bottom of my spine start to tingle, shooting static to my aching core. Like multicolored fireworks. Mmm, she could not hear her own wails of pleasure, but she could definitely feel them as they stirred the air around us. My hand drifts from the inside of her thigh to the waist, sinking my thumb by her stomach. Slowly, moving my energy in circles around the skin. She starts to purr without even knowing it, the sounds coming from her throat and seeming to swell in her cells as I feel those low vibrations surrounding me. Jumping from my fingertips, catching every nerve in my system, and very lazily devouring my soul.
I lean down by her neck, tasting the pulse under my starving lips, hips itching forward as I take my time, fingertips touching her stomach again. Writing on its surface in cursive, one letter after another, separating each word with a small caress. “Tell me to stop.” Very slowly, I move back and gaze into those dazed eyes; her pupils dilated, green lights flickering like tiny pieces of glass put against the sun. This time I mouth the words, both challenging her and wanting to hear permission. And if she won’t let me... then I will just move away as if nothing ever happened, even if my whole body ached for her. In the sweetest, most torturous kind of way.
Tell me to stop.
I whisper the words so low and in with a strange kind of heavy softness, that even I’m not fully sure if they left my mouth. Carefully, she lifts trembling fingers up my wrists, elbows, and then with surprising strength that I would never accuse her of, she grabs my arms and pulls me on top of her, letting out an almost primal sound. It vibrates as if a growl but is much lower, powered not that much by her voice, but by all of her body. Her lips part slightly and form just one word.
She mouths as her eyes whisper to me; don’t ever stop. My skin erupts both in waves of flames, and burning cold matter as if the entire ice on the planet started to crack. To the sound of our bodies. Our raging souls. The last bit of my restrain fades away from me and I grab her by the thighs, nails digging into the material of her pants and then deeper into her flesh, my hands pulling her hips even closer to me, the need to feel her throbbing core against me, clouding everything else.
You’re mine now. And no one else’s.
I whisper into her mouth slowly, knowing that she feels every word, her body shaking with a need that I want to satisfy, no matter how many times she asks. Even if eternity catches us unannounced. For now, there was just this moment and no black feathers in my lungs, just her breath giving me life.
Back at the cafe. The same day.
Mel’s urgent whisper brings me back to reality, as I look to the side just in time to notice a teacup swirling gently in the air just above the table, a small metal spoon gliding in the air next to it as if swimming on the surface of the water. As if swimming in endless space. I think just as the whole meaning of the situation hits me, anxiety levels kicking in. Sudden panic suffocates me and sucks the air out of my lungs, eyes widening with horror as the cup drops down to the table with a loud, attention-grabbing sound, while the spoon bounces off the wooden surface and falls right next to a customer’s feet. An older lady with white, short, and perfectly made curls looks down surprised, her expression quickly turning to displeased as she notices me. She carefully dusts away some crumbs from the corners of her lips while at the same time boring a hole into my forehead with her narrowed eyes. I mouth out “sorry” and quickly pick up the little loss and wipe the table from the spilled tea, a scarlet color with the speed of light covering my cheeks, neck, and cleavage. It’s always been that way whenever I got nervous, and nothing has changed in the last 22 years since I’ve been here. Unfortunately.
I sigh and quickly take everything back to the kitchen, glad that at least the beautiful china didn’t break, somehow I had a sentiment to that particular set and the little forget-me-nots that painted the fragile porcelain, their soft blue, purple, and pink colors always lifting my mood. Plus, my wallet already hurt at the thought of having to repay Mel for the damages. I owed her tons of cash - even if she didn’t want to hear about it. Either way, she’s going to find incoming money in her cookie jar soon. If she likes it or not. I smile and fill the washing machine with a new load methodically and then straighten my back, feeling it pop in protest.
What was that little show by the table? And with Miss Grant as an eye witness, may I add.
I jump and then sigh again.
I didn’t mean that to happen, you know that.
My arms cross as if I was a scorned child, and Mel rolls her eyes to the ceiling.
Don’t give me that attitude, we are not playing house here.
I groan a bit but then my mood deflates just as fast as it appeared.
Ray, I know perfectly well that you don’t have much control over your new... abilities. But my question was actually about something else.
My stare turns half curious, half cautious.
Why then? What caused it?
I don’t know.
Think about it.
Her voice is soft, yet still, my hands start to tremble just before I throw them in the air, frustrated.
I don’t know. I just don’t know. Why won’t everybody just leave me alone?! I did not sign up for this.
I grab the sides of the counter, bending over it and trying to breathe in a way that wouldn’t make me look like I’m going through an asthma attack of some sort. After a moment I feel a warm hand on my back and turn around slowly, staring at Mel’s gentle eyes. And suddenly I calm down, peace filling my body as if someone just turned off the stress button. Just like that.
I’m sorry, again. I’m acting like some spoiled brat. I know, I overreacted big time, but you know I didn’t mean it. It’s just that...
A very stressful time for all of us, it’s alright, hon. I’m here and I’m not going anywhere, okay?
I nod with assurance and relax some more.
My eyes follow hers and I shake my head.
I’m not sure... everything was normal, nothing out of the ordinary, I was just clearing the tables like I always do.
Her stare encouraging me to continue and I smile a little, so happy that I have such a good person in my life, I don’t know what I would have done without her. Okay, actually I do know. Most likely, I would end up an even bigger mess than I already am. Isn’t life just great? I gaze up at Mel, feeling deflated again.
Well, like I said, normal stuff.
I see something sparkle in her eyes, like an unexpected flash of white light, and quickly shake my head, annoyed that on top of everything, my mind is playing tricks on me.
I struggle to answer but then close my eyes, trying to find whatever it was that made something in me shift at that moment, focusing on what I was doing then step by step, concentrating on each little detail. Which honestly, surprises me a lot, since I have always been a very distracted and clumsy creature, unless I was cooking, only then did I manage to find the tiniest spack of grace in my messed up system. The rest of the time I was just a risk to society, annoying people with my clumsy sorry ass. I smile at the thought but then focus again, trying to touch something that constantly slips from my hands like something wet, sticky, and very alive.
What do you see?
Her soft voice reaches me, even if it seems somehow so far away. My mind drifts to all the things I normally do without even thinking; cleaning the tables, refilling coffee for the customers, making sure everyone has napkins, sweeping the floor, gathering the dirty dishes... my brain freezes for a second. That was the time when something changed. Mmm, I felt warmth. I swallow and shift uncomfortably. Not just warmth; fires. Slow flames consuming the room. Excitement, joy, tension. I felt... I look up at her and of course, feel my skin heat up, the deep pink color covering my skin without any mercy - I felt turned on. I think and stare awkwardly at my hands.
It’s as if the room was on fire.
Her eyebrows furrow together and her gaze turns concerned.
Did you feel any pain or discomfort?
No, uhm... definitely not. Mmm, the opposite, actually.
She looks a bit confused at me.
Uhm, pleasure. A LOT of it.
Her eyebrows lift almost to the ceiling.
Well then. I did not expect that, that’s for sure.
She sits down and looks to the side, lost in thought for a while. I pick a dishcloth and hold onto it tight, moving it in different directions, trying not to get lost in that energy.
I didn’t realize what I was feeling back then, it just... took over me, completely.
How did it feel?
She asks, this time sounding curious, and I roll my eyes at that.
Oh, where do I start?? Mel, I was practically swimming in it. It crushed me to the point that I couldn’t even move. It was crazy, out of this world, mind exploding, a ball over the park kind of moment! I never felt anything like that! Ever!
Yes, I can tell.
Her eyes follow mine as her stare becomes more intense.
You couldn’t move at that moment, Ray. But your energy sure could. If you would have stayed in it...
Then a lot more stuff would be flowing around.
Yes, including Miss Grant.
And her heavy attitude.
We look at each other for a tense moment but then burst out laughing without any warming, bending, and holding our stomachs.
That’s not funny, Ray. These are serious matters of...
She doesn’t even finish, as she starts to laugh again.
There you go, Mel. We gotta chill sometimes or this or we might go insane one day. I mean you, I’m already one foot in crazy land.
She nods and tries to steady her breath.
You’re right, but still, we have to work on your focus when something like that happens. We are going to start slow and concentrate on some...
I try to hold back a smile, knowing that meditation, yoga, and the spiritual side of things was her thing.
Don’t mock, you know it works. Knowing how to handle your energy and chakras can make all the difference.
Does Ben know what a fruitloop you are, or do you just only show yourself to him in red lingerie so he doesn’t notice?
She throws a dry dishcloth at me and I grab it without effort, grinning at her.
Well, do you?
I just tell him only the “need to know” option, and then I put a lot of lace and silk on.
She winks at me mischievously and steps out of the kitchen with a much lighter walk than before, as I smile at the door that closes behind her. Yet, despite the joking mood, I grow serious. What was that back then? And how can I possibly feel it again? I bite my lower lip and inhale deeper, my breath catching a few times. The energy on that, god, that was some powerful stuff. I will take a dose of that any day, just tell me where to sign up. My hands twitch a bit, as if yearning to touch something, to grab it, something calling me with an intensity that I have a hard time grasping. What’s calling me in such an amazing way? I need to find out, no matter how long it’s going to take. I need to consume it. The thought hits me like an earthquake, eyelids blinking like crazy. It was as if it wasn’t even me saying that. But it was me. What the hell? Why did I...? I breath faster but then throw the feeling away, afraid to sink in it, like everything else I seem to drown in since I met her. The realization hits me over the head and I slip to the floor, sitting down with a low thud, feeling the world spin. Finally, after some time I look up and notice Mel’s concerned eyes on me as she stands over me. I quickly shake my head and give her a tired stare.
Nothing. Sometimes, I’m it’s all just a bit too much, you know? That’s all.
I stand up and dust off the back of my skirt and grab a tray, getting back to myself again.
Are you sure?
Yes, now let’s get back to the real world.
I square my shoulders and give her a proper smile.
Weird shit or not, bills won’t pay themselves, right?
She smiles back and lets me leave without any further questions, and I couldn’t be more grateful for her at that moment.
chapter 14. https://theprose.com/post/408550/those-blazing-threads
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