June 18, 2008

Etched in Stone v.2

Posted in stories tagged at 10:27 pm by littlesubmissions

Note: I wrote two versions of this, with different protagonists.  The other version is below.

She had hoped it would rain tonight, or at least stay cloudy. Not that it was necessary, but it would have lent the whole scene an appropriate sense of melodrama.

Even grief can become pretentious, given the right circumstances.

But the clouds had evaporated and she was standing under merrily blinking stars while music wrapped around the tombstones and wandered through the trees. The college dorms were a few blocks away, and the goth kids were out tonight. She heard their voices over the mournful tune. The rain would have kept them inside.

Or would it?

Did they even call themselves “goth” anymore?

Or were they “emo” now?

What was “emo” anyway?

She looked over, towards the sound of the music, and one of them was walking towards her. He looked dismembered, black clothes blending into the night and soft pale skin pierced with silver studs shining, a happily dissected cadaver bouncing across the grass, his torso left on the operating table.

“Oh, hey. I thought you were someone else.” He stopped when he saw her face, cocked his head and looked at her.

She shrugged casually, and smiled at him. “No problem.” She saw him start to turn, then his eyes caught the shape of the flogger she had held against her arm.

He paused, licked his lips, shifted his weight from one clunky Army surplus boot to the other. “I like your coat. Is it real leather?”

“I’m not sure. Probably not.” She looked away.

She heard the click of a lighter a few seconds before the acrid smell of smoke hit. He followed it over to stand at her side, a few feet away. She could see him reading the inscription on the tombstone in the starlight. His eyes glanced across her face, took in the wisps of gray in her hair, guessed her age, dropped again to the flogger when she thought he wasn’t looking. “Your husband?”

She nodded. “Yeah.” It was still a harsh croak, something she didn’t want to admit even after all the years that had passed.

“Sorry.”

“Me too.” Another shrug.

“So you didn’t get to finish beating him before they put him in the ground?”

Her eyes went wide and she stood, open mouthed, looking at him looking at her. Finally she laughed, shocked at the suggestion and shook her head. “No, we…” She saw his piercings and the tattoos peeking out from under his sleeves, and wondered again at how worldly young people seemed nowadays. “We were kind of kinky. I bring some of our things and come out on our anniversary. Kind of a tribute I guess.”

“Cool. Sorry if that was a little rude.”

“No. Well, yes. But it was the kind of joke he would have made.” She caught his eye and smiled. “It’s fine.”

His head rocked back and forth, first in agreement and then keeping time with another song from the stereo. The silence stretched. “So what else?”

“Huh?”

“What else do you have with you? You said, ‘some things.'” He exhaled smoke away from her, and turned back in time to see her flush. “Plural.”

She looked him over, wondered where he thought this was going. Looked from his face to the
silent granite block, trying to put her thoughts together. “Handcuffs.”

“Really?” He smiled, a lazy, lopsided grin. He took a last drag on the cigarette and stood on one leg to put it out on his boot heel. She noticed pale flesh appear as his clothes shifted, vanished again as he stood straight and slid the butt into a pocket. “Plain police issue or the kinky kind with the lining? Let me see.”

She pulled the handcuffs out of her pocket, handed them to him and watched with lazy disinterest. He held them up to see them better, then ratcheted the cuff clear through. The clicking sound sound she knew so well, but now without context or meaning.

He passed them back, leaving his hand outstretched as she picked up the restraint with her off hand. Her eyes locked with his as she put the open cuff around his wrist, until he blinked and looked away. A single click followed, and his eyes stayed on the ground. Another click and then another, and the metal cinched down on his flesh. He slowly held out his other hand.

She ignored his hand, put the other cuff around her own wrist, locked their hands together, and dropped the flogger. Then she slapped him across the face. “Pick it up.”

He knelt down, and she could see his cheek turning splotchy already. He picked up the flogger, offered it back to her, stayed on his knees.

She leaned down and slapped him again, a backhand across the other cheek. “With your mouth.”

He winced and dropped the flogger, leaned down to put his mouth on the ground.

She held her arm up, making him twist and contort his body to reach down with his mouth. She pulled his shoulder tight, made him stretch until the metal cut into both of them, and he could scoop the handle up with his teeth.

He got back up on his knees, and she looked down at him.

Cheeks red, eyes shut, tiny pools of drool forming at the corners of his mouth.

She remembered how this used to feel. Passionate, her heart racing, she should be shoving his head back down, telling him to lick her boots while she ground her other foot into his back and grew wetter with each gasp of pain.

She just felt tired, and bored, and lonely.

She took the flogger, stuck it in her hip pocket. Found her car keys and flipped through until she found the handcuff key.

His eyes opened when he felt her pulling the cuff loose, and he looked up when she stepped away. She didn’t wait for him to ask, just looked away and spoke in monotone. “I’m sorry, this just isn’t going to work. Please leave.”

He stood up. “Cool, that’s fine I mean.” He rubbed one cheek, started to turn and go then stopped. “I don’t think he would have wanted this for you though. I mean, I didn’t know him or anything, but I think he would have wanted you to be happy.”

She nodded with slow, tiny, jerking movements of her head. “You’re probably right.” Her voice was flat, monotone.

The silence stretched between them, and even the music faded away as the CD ended. She thought it was almost as good as the rain she’d wished for earlier.

“Well, take it easy. We’ve got some beer over there, and a thermos of coffee. If you want to wander over.” She didn’t say anything, and he walked away.

She waited, until he was gone. The hollow feeling was still there, but easier to ignore. She wanted to turn and go, leave and get a bottle of wine on the way home and continue her interrupted torture alone. Drunk and full of self-pity she’d loathe herself for in the morning.

Instead she walked forward, wrapped her arms around the cold stone. Slid the handcuffs back in her pocket and traced her fingers down the granite, pulled her body tight against cold marker. Felt the solid geometry of the rock, it’s eternal, uncaring hardness. She cried as she rubbed her cheek against the sharp, indented letters of his name, tracing each character until her flesh warmed them, and then moved on while they grew cold again.

Copyright Jerry Jones. Unauthorized use is prohibited.

8 Comments »

  1. Anonymous said,

    Dear Jerry,

    I found this blog while surfing the Internet (not for entirely innocent reasons). I just want to tell you that your stories are both beautiful and hot. Please keep up the good work.

    Signed,
    some random woman

  2. littlesubmissions said,

    Dear Random Woman,

    Thank you for your kind words. I see you everywhere, but we never stopped and said “Hello before.” Thank you for doing so.

    Signed,
    Jerry Jones / Vague

  3. Garden Fence said,

    I love this version of this one. It feels more graceful than the other, I think, and the loss is so powerful from the woman’s perspective, at the end. I don’t think it’s less sexy for the lack of explicit contact, either. Incredible restraint and beauty. Wonderful!

  4. littlesubmissions said,

    I’m glad you like it, I actually wrote the other version first, and just automatically defaulted to the submissive point of view (not sure why, maybe just force of habit). Then I realized that wasn’t entirely fair to the dominants and wrote this version, but I’d already written the other one and digital ink was free so I threw them both up.

    I think it’s more powerful just because we’re so used to the idea of dominants being in control and submissives not being in control (especially in slash fiction). When the submissive is the point of view, he’s still not in control, so no real change. When the dominant is the central character, she’s used to being in control, but now there’s something she absolutely cannot control, so she’s lost the whole kit and caboodle.

    That’s just from a writing standpoint anyway. So thanks again for reading, and commenting.

  5. Elizabeth said,

    Wow.

    I lost the first husband when he was 28, which you may or may not know from my blog. I refer to him ever occasionally. So there’s *my* perspective coming into reading these stories.

    Well done, you got it. Either end, either story. It’s a gifted writer who can write what he hasn’t gone through (exactly) himself, this well.

    hugs, E

  6. Vague said,

    I knew you had a first husband, but didn’t know how you came to be separate. I’ve never actually done a lot of the things I write about, and this is one I hope to never have to experience.

    I’m sorry for your loss.

  7. Elizabeth said,

    Thanks for saying that. It’s been 11 1/2 years, but being a widow is for a lifetime, no matter that I quickly and smartly picked up all my pieces and began again. (Children leave you no choice, my opinion, you *must*).

    This might be the only post where I’ve touched the subject, Baggage Claim.

    Writing things you’ve not experienced is possible with an empathetic gift, which you seem to have. 🙂

    hugs,E

  8. Vague said,

    I’m glad you found someone, part of what I really want to do with these stories is show characters that aren’t immune to human traits just because they’re into an acronym relationship. Sometimes those are good traits (laughing, being concerned for a partner’s well being), sometimes negative (refusing to move on and getting stuck in the past, not being honest about how unhappy you are and what you really want).

    This was one of the unfortunate ones, and I always feel a little bad for posting them (to paraphrase from your own very well written post, there’s no crying in porno), but they are a lot more fun to write.


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