He bites her neck, and she sighs because someone wants her, or her body, but, does it even matter? she wonders. She can’t be too loud because her roommates might hear her. None of them are even around, but they might come home while she’s, you know, in the middle of it. It. It? She doesn’t even know what it is. It is whatever everyone says it is. That’s all that matters, right? Wait, no, that “right” is supposed to be in a sentence alone. That’s all that matters. Right? That implies a sense of security in the first statement that doesn’t belong there, though. The whole thing should have a question mark attached to it, not just the “right.” But grammar never aided passion. Ani DiFranco’s playing. He doesn’t even like Ani DiFranco. Most men back away in fear of women like Ani DiFranco. Oh well, it’s not like she can push him off and go change the music now. She’s committed. To what? To this, so she might as well be in it. What’s he doing now? Taking off his shirt, so does he expect her to take hers off? Probably. He pauses at her small breasts, on his way down her tall, slender body. Well, maybe it’s not so slender. Everyone else seems to think so, but she can’t agree. I mean, look at those hips. Just one touch, and she can feel the fat on those love handles. But she loves her small breasts the breasts she used to jokingly call anthills in middle school, hoping they’d grow even though she knew they never would. When she puts on a tight tank top and stands in front of the mirror, when she steals away from everyone she knows and hides in her room, she feels more like a teenage boy than a girl, a feeling she guiltily enjoys. Just the other day she was telling her friend how she might be a lesbian, but now she’s in bed with this boy. This boy. This boy. This boy. If it were a girl, would it make a difference? She wouldn’t be able to do what she’s planning on doing tonight, but maybe that’s better. His hands. They slide lower, lower, lower. They find wetness, and she tries to identify with what she feels. She moans because that’s what she’s supposed to do, right? Why did she put her iTunes on shuffle. This could be embarrassing. The Spice Girls could come on. Aren’t they back together? Her friend was trying to get her to see their comeback concert. At least she had enough sense to refuse then. What about now? It’s different. She moans and something moves near her thigh. Is that what she’s planning on allowing inside? It felt so…weak. Shit. Why didn’t her best friend talk her out of this when she called her yesterday? “It’s your choice, ultimately,” she said. That’s the problem. That’s always been the problem. She doesn’t want to make the decision. Her best friend was molested when she was little, and now she fucks every guy she can. What’s the difference between that, being molested, and this, having sex? Consent. Somewhere in her, she decided to give consent, and now he’s devouring her as if she is his last meal on earth, and who’s to say she isn’t? She’s the bread and the wine. She’s the vinegar and the sponge. She’s the wood and the…but that’s enough of that. She made this decision days, months, years, lifetimes ago. There’s nothing she can do about it now. Her hands move to mirror his; she forgot to hang her favorite blue skirt up this morning, she remembers. As soon as this is over, she’ll walk over there and hang it up. Her closet door is open. That’s what’s been bothering her. Her skirt lies crumpled on the floor, and her closet door hangs open. She will clean her room as soon as this is over. If she’s lucky, he’ll go outside and smoke a cigarette. A Marlboro, just like her father used to smoke when she was 8 years old. Even then, she knew there was something wrong with his smoking. She used to kick and scream in her room, refusing to talk to anyone when he went outside to smoke. She would sneak in his closet and smell his shirts to see if he’d been smoking that day. Of course, he always had been. Eventually he replaced cigarettes with chewing tobacco. No smoke to make his shirts smell, but that circle the outline of the can made in his back pocket. That was the culprit. She always knew what to look for. She found it in his glove compartment when they were on the way to the mall one day; she dumped it out the window; his face twisted with anger, and he turned around in the Citgo station. She tries to remember when she stopped crying that night. Did he stop chewing after that? Probably not. He stopped eventually though, and nothing happened. No cancer. No nothing. Not that she wanted anything to happen to him. It’s just funny how some people can never smoke a cigarette in their life and die of lung cancer, while other chain smokers can live until they’re 90 years old and sound like a dying frog. Life is just. She bought detergent today and took the nice sheets off her bed. Such calculation for such an irrational decision. She could be sitting in her bed by herself on her good sheets reading Sylvia Plath, but one can’t live by reading Plath all day. That would be too easy. Life would make a lot more sense if she were a literary character of someone’s imagination. She wouldn’t be making her own decisions then; a narrator would be; an author would be; anyone but her would be. If someone else were writing her story, would she be lying in bed naked right now? But someone else is writing her story, and she is lying in bed naked right now. If someone else were writing her story, would she stop him before he entered, finally taking power of her situation and life, refusing to allow anyone else to tell her who she is or should be; or would she lie docile and let him do what he came here to do, freeing herself from all the limitations of conviction and morality she placed on herself at age 5, allowing herself to live without fear of anyone or anything? But someone else is writing her story, and I know just as much about what choice she’ll make as you do.
My name is Emily Calvin, a.k.a. Kairos Rae, or simply MLE. I am a 24-year-old cat lady, a wannabe mother, and an aspiring rapper, working on my masters in Creative Writing from Lesley University in Cambridge, Mass. I currently brood and write in a hermit crab's hole in Portland, Oregon with one foot on the East coast and another in California. My writing's been called experimental, fantastical, fabulistic, disjointed, inaccessible, and "interesting...". I am just grateful I have fingers to write, a brain to think, and people to read and reject or accept my submissions.