Friday, July 11, 2008

My Turn

He sits at the edge of the bed, and I can’t help but want to touch him. I crawl toward him, and rub my cheek against the backs of his knuckles loving the feel of his quick response. The palm opened and caressed my cheek, traveled to cup the back of my head, and played with my hair.

In his arms a few moments later, and unable to resist the feel of his skin on my lips, the same hand finds its way between my thighs and he uses the fingertips to tap and scratch the tender, greedy, skin there. Having needed his touch for so long the orgasm that rips through my body as his fingers enter my eager pussy takes over me. It tosses my head back. It opens my mouth and changes my grateful whimpers to groans of whorish delight. It forces my hand across his body and leaves a bright red trail, like the signature of an animal, from the back of one thigh to the opposite nipple. I press back against him, and stifle my own cries with his erection. Trying desperately to communicate both my appreciation and my pleasure I play with the tension in my lips. I roll my tongue. I use my fingers and breath against his flesh to make his hips buck and watch his muscles tighten in his abdomen, and thighs. I feel him surge and indulge his instinct only for a moment before releasing the hold my lips have on him, having come to the conclusion that this time, it’s about me.

For the first time for me our touch is not about him playing with me to see what happens or me touching him to please him, it’s about getting what I need. Motivated by my own needs I mount him and using his erection against my G spot, come again. Gaining trust in my decision I dismount, wanting to feel more of him against me. I lay beside him side to back and right away his hand finds my neck and his nails bite as deep as he can make them, I roll my hips and scissor my legs with his, letting his cock press against my sex, loving the feel of it sliding in my wetness, the rim flicking my clit and with each passing bringing me closer to another orgasm. Unafraid now to direct I call out my needs and he obliges beautifully, tightening his grip on my throat and pressing his hips harder into mine. The animal inside takes over and in a simple movement I bring him inside me and tighten myself around him, bucking and gasping I rip trough myself and fill my own world with the pleasure I'm using him for.

When my body is satisfied, I empty myself of his erection. He is left without orgasm, and we both know that its ok. The encounter progresses to merely friendly touches and caresses and the night ends on a gentle note, with an appreciated hug and a smile for the memory.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Alice- The Queen's Ways

At first, I thought it was a dream, and then I looked around the room and wished it was a nightmare. The dark need of the, so appropriate, Moonlight Sonata bouncing off the red walls, the scarce but completely white furniture placed with such careful precision; it’s dim, the only light given by twin standing lamps, meant to highlight that sick display of devastation; all these things confirm in an instant that restless fear I’ve had for weeks. Turning my eyes to the windows I see her, at once from where I’m standing behind her and face to face from the icy reflection; this impossible view showing my place in the moment. She was startled to hear my voice, but covered it well; that tells me this wasn’t planned. Her surprise is good, she may be driving but she’s not really in control. I steady my nerve and speak again, “Fox in the henhouse I see.”

In the kind of leather boots I’ve only seen in porn she stands at the window, our body covered in shiny black liquid latex to the neck, our long brown hair tamed and hidden beneath that a-line red wig, making us look like both a wet dream and a walking nightmare. Our crimsoned lips twist into a slightly sinister grin as she speaks, “So good of you to join us, Layla.”

“Us?” I say as she spins on one four inch heel to face me, the world swirling into nonexistence as she does so, when she stops we’re not real anymore. The room looks similar to the one I found her in, same blood red walls with their macabre decorations, but now sliding to the right, circling us slowly; the movement playing with my senses. We’re sitting, now, opposite each other in a pair of her white linen seats, separated by the low round coffee table, where a nude girl spins and twists silently between us, her face constantly shifting from Alice’s to mine, and more briefly to that of someone I don’t recognize and so must assume is her own.

“We have another now,” She gestures to the dancing doll between us; “I haven’t given her a name; she’s just a doll, no mind of her own.” The pride in Alice’s voice is tenuous; I can tell there’s something disturbing her about this new girl, but she shrugs as she speaks feigning nonchalance, “She’s a decoy. I ignored too much of your sex, so now I need a dog-catcher. She suits her purpose.”

“So you’re completely given over to madness.” It’s a statement, not a question, and Alice treats it as such, dismissing it before she really digests the words. I continue, “Alice, do you ever wonder why you do these things? When we were young we studied, remember? Have you forgotten all those nights in the library, trying to figure out what we were? I remember how upset you were when we realized they’d call us sick, that they would put us away just because you existed in me. Remember how you swore they’d not do that to us, how you vowed to give them no reason to think we were less than sane?”

“Those were the promises of a twelve year old, Layla, a confused girl who thought she was meant to be like you.” He voice shakes slightly, tone of the last two words betray her, the emphasis showing her confusion, at once proving the distaste she has for me and the longing she has always felt toward what she calls ‘being real’.

“Sour grapes, then.” I say, knowing what it will create in her.

“Aren’t they though? Just as sour as that fox thought them to be. Don’t you live every day feeling ashamed of yourself, of what you are? I understand all humans to feel this way. I used to, too, but this is better. I may be the shadow Silvie always called me, but now it doesn’t have to hurt. I don’t hide, I stalk; keeping low showing myself when the time is right, that’s strength, and when I drive, my existence has purpose. I don’t have to try to act the way people would expect you to, just so they don’t know I’m here. When I come out now, they know who I am, what I am; they see me, my strength and they bask in that reality.” As her confidence rises the girl between us begins to echo Alice’s aggravation with her movements; twirling fiercely, her arms flailing expressing in gestures the conflict in Alice’s mind. I try not to focus on her, or those weirdly revolving walls; but my eyes keep sinking into the motion. “I’d much rather this, that to be some social meat puppet again.”

“Meat puppet?” I say, struggling to keep my head against the tide. “Is that what you think of me?”

“Isn’t that what you are? I see you out there, endlessly trying to pay, to make amends to society, apologizing for what you are, for what you’ve been.”

“I’m paying for you. Trying to put right what you destroyed.”

“Don’t lie, Layla,” She hisses, the dancing dolls face contorting to show her distaste, with ice on her voice to slice through my mind, “it doesn’t become you. You’re trying to end me; to trap me inside. I told you it wouldn’t work, but there you are everyday, trying anyway.”

“It’s cause and effect, Alice, every action needs a consequence. We both know I’ve always paid the price for both of us. I’m tired of paying for you; I thought if I devoted myself I could teach you to be good, too.”

“Your desperation is showing, L, you’re reaching, trying to find an excuse for what you’ve done.”

“No, A, I’m trying to explain.”

“Enough,” she says, “You’re boring me.” Rolling her eyes and blowing her bangs she dismisses my words with a wave of her hand, “There’s a way, Layla, that we can both be whole.” And there it is, the reason I was brought here, I knew there had to be one. We’ve never been face to face like this before, and I knew somehow, the powers that be had to have a motive. “I think my smiling Lord has proven that this cannot be stopped. I am an instrument meant to serve my God, you are meant to be a vehicle for that service. Come inside with me, Layla, join me. If you live this, you can have everything, you can have a life, the attention of men, and the freedom from your conscious you have always craved. We were meant for this, L, give yourself to it and stop fighting your truth. You don’t have to make the gifts, you only have to bring them to me.”

“What about her?” I say, gesturing to the girl before us, now stopped in her dance and crouched on the table and hugging her legs. Her still shifting face hidden behind her knees, and the table sliding ever left, against the walls that promise me sweet oblivion.

“She’s a shell. All empty inside. I can use her to move for me at the club, but I can’t hunt there much longer. I need a human to bring them to me. I need someone who can react like a person, someone who knows sex, and how to use words as well as movements.”

“But how does that help me?” I ask, the truth dawning on me even as the words spill across my lips and I relax, just a little, feeling a rush of warmth like the last kiss of sleep on a cold winter morning. And somehow out of reality and into this place my ears again find the Beethoven, that lonely piano urging me to listen.

“You know as well as I do that you can’t be anymore, not unless you want this hidden life of servitude and degradation for the rest of your days. Come inside with me, Layla, we’ll give you a new way. We will rename you; you will be reborn in a fresh mind. Take with you the memories and the tools you’ll need to do our work and leave the parts of you that conflict with this behind, here, in the mind you use now. When you give up those false morals and give in to what we are, you’ll have no more shame. It is so incredibly freeing to do the Lords work, to be what it is you were meant for. We can stop the pain, we can stop the shame. Come inside, Layla; let the Lord make us whole.”

I feel the way Eve must have, staring at that shiny apple, all God’s knowledge being offered with just a taste, and hearing the truth through it all in that rattle at the serpent’s back. There is a difference between Eve and me; her serpent was working against Eve’s God, the archangel in my ear works directly for hers. There is a truth in Alice’s words, I can feel it like the wind in my lungs, if I go inside with her, if I leave this self outside and willingly become something new, then all the pain that is Layla Murphy has to end. Everyone wants, at times, this chance to be more, to change into someone that’s ok with what they are. As much as it hurts me to lose, to admit defeat, I know the true victory is in finding a place for me.

I close my eyes, breathe deep, and let the tide take me. Washed through a deep hole inside me I stand and, with solemn tranquility, wander the aisles in a warehouse of my life; picking and pulling out the things I will need to do the Lord’s work. I keep the things closest to me, my schooling, my laughter, my music, I take Seth’s small platinum heart, but leave Silvie’s blue steel box with its pretty silver bow in place, there’s too much pain there for my new soul. I take a last look at the walls of my mind, now beginning to burn out all evidence of its own existence. One look, one breath, and I return to the place where Alice waits. I reach with one shaking hand to the girl between us, and pull her by the shoulder to me, I feel myself slipping in her embrace, sinking into her and becoming something new.


There is a rush of air around me as I watch the embrace, my heart tearing with the swell of joy and sacrifice, driven by the rush of a Chopin concerto. Layla was born, she was real, but she didn’t know what to do with it. She’s gone now, and I’m real and I’ll miss her. She was my sister, my twin, and she’s gone inside forever now; changing into something more. Hot salty tears streak my cheeks as I reach to hold to my breast the woman-child before me, a moment of maternal instinct for her, and then I place her cheeks in my hands and watch her eyes to see the spark that tells me Layla made it in. I watch a simple, frightened, shudder escape her before her mind builds a new soul that shines with talent, experience, and eager subordination.

“Clair.” She whispers, with a sly smile and an air of salutation, and we kiss. She melts into me and it feels like the world spins on the tips of our tongues. When it ends, we’re back to reality and I can see through her eyes and feel her mind beside mine, as we draw the curtain across the museum and change the music. In this state our body is like a second skin to me, I can feel her using it, but know the overall control is mine.

Our eyes fly to the clock, 11:45. My smiling Lord may not have thought to warn me of It’s intentions for this evening, but you have to give a God credit for timing. A glance to the chair on the right, the last place Layla ever was, and I’m biting my lower lip as I move to regain my place at the window. Not long into the second track of Pretty Hate Machine, Clair and I see lights of a small truck climbing the hill, and the Moon takes it’s rightful place in my thoughts. I settle into a lounge chair in my mind as Clair presses the buzzer to open the heavy steel gates that guard the factory grounds. She moves like a pro when she meets them at the lift and leads them, panting and tripping over their own cocks, down the hall to our door. I let her play first, so I can get a feel for the new talent, before I take over the game, and celebrate the complex pains and simple pleasures my Lord has shown me under the light of It’s ever grinning gaze.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Alice- Gazing At Mome Raths

612 Foccia Point stands at the end of the street and on top of the hill, this city was built in its shadow in more respects than one. The fact that the smaller dog seemed confused means they must be tourists, that’s good news for my Master, tourists are less likely to be missed quickly and a lot harder to track once they’ve gone. I checked with Marcie, those boys didn’t run a credit card at the club, more good news. It’s 11:00pm, expecting to see the bright splash of headlights I’m standing at the long wall of windows in a room that used to be one of The Weighs and Kneads test kitchens, watching the fog slip past cloaking the city’s secrets in its cold embrace, and waiting.

The windows shake slightly with the force of the speakers behind me and bring my focus from the fog outside to the images reflected from within. Layla destroyed most of my treasures from before, but I managed to save a few of the smaller bits and smuggle them here. My eyes find the twin shadow boxes, like bookends on the wall that frame gifts created for my grinning God. Staring closely at the box on the right, from here you can just barely make out the ear that used to belong to that old cur all those years ago, in the other sits Lucy Sumner’s pinky finger resting forever still, now mounted in its bed of cotton. The center of this display is given to much larger, fresher gifts; a trio of prizes for my Master set out on a low ebony table. I close my eyes breathe deep and feel myself settle inside, lids flying open on my exhale I take a moment to revel in the memory of each offering.

To the extreme left lies a souvenir of freedom. Recalling my first post-enclosure offering plays a smile across my lips, it was cheap and pretty; something meant for my own amusement, the way a real girl takes an afternoon to spend her husband’s money on a new dress and a manicure. Palms stitched together; frozen in an eternal, silent clap with wrist separated at an angle drawing a sharp capital ‘V’ that ends just before the absent elbow; rests a withered pair of forearms. I took them from an old bitch I found wandering in the fog one night, filling the air around her with random curse words and shaking her fist at the sky. Pretending I was her granddaughter, I used her dementia to bring her into one of the lesser buildings and fed her thick potato soup that, I must confess, was more than sufficient in its strychnine content. Playing “Shiny Happy People” I giggled wildly as I watched the miserable thing convulse on the cold concrete floor gagging on her own vomit, and fouling herself. It was the funniest damn thing I ever saw and the release I got from that celebration helped me to understand why humans laugh.

The empty face that hangs on the beautician’s bust to the far right used to belong to a girl I found in the campus library. Too pretty for her own good, and blissfully unaware of it she let me lead her here in the name of a study session I let her come run gratefully across my tongue before she felt the heavy shackles slam closed around her fragile wrists. Her strength surprised me; not much more than a puppy and that baby bitch lasted a week against the wall while I came, nearly nightly, to use her body against her mind. I took so much delight in that bitter little toy that her face was the only thing that could be saved. Even her shoulders had tasted sweet, slow roasted with onion and thyme I sliced them thin and, for a midnight picnic, had them on sourdough with bitter apple cider and fresh vanilla ice cream.

My eyes and mind travel, lost in the yesterday of my most treasured prize to date, a set of nearly limbless torsos I saved from a breeding pair of wandering dogs that tried to befriend me in the subway. Watching the waves slam the beach at Carter’s Cove with my Lord’s blessing shining down on us from a cloudless sky; he made dinner over a fire while she babbled mindlessly about free trade and how hemp could save the world; I woke that night before the moon faded, and smothered the dirty clueless bitch while she slept. Then in the pre-dawn silence I brought him out of his sleep and into the arms of my Master panting and moaning his way to orgasm; his eyes flying open as he walks that razors edge With his hips bucking between my thighs I leaned forward, letting my nipples drag against his squirming torso, watched closely as his eyes drift into emptiness as I slipped my blade into the hollow place where his collarbones meet, and savored the sweet gurgle of his trachea’s desperate search for air. I used their bodies to please myself, painting us all in his blood; before I relieved them of their heads and most of their arms, keeping their necks and a good portion of her hair as well as the tops of their thighs. Now they rest in a macabre sort of embrace; upright with bellies together, her breasts pressed tight to his chest; her sex open against his eternally greedy cock. I took special care when I attached the hinges to their backs and mounted the slender wire stands, I haven’t permanently joined them to each other yet, because they’re still fresh enough to use on the nights I need a little company.

“So this is what you’ve been up to.” Layla’s voice breaks into my reverie like a hammer through a sheet of glass. My eyes shift and refocus on the window before me and suddenly I’m starring at her reflection next to mine, as always she comes to me in that pure white nightie, her hair softly hugging her shoulders and looking for all the world like a child lost in her mother’s body.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Alice- The Jabberwalkie

Somehow the narrow hall from the stage to the dressing room collects all the air from the club. Everything from the stairs to the lobby, even the smell from the private showrooms gathers here. I leave the stage and move toward the hall, breaking the vortex of smoke, bravely spinning its silent witness to the desperate fantasies we sell, as I pass. Upstairs I pull my next outfit from my locker and make sure Layla’s mousy brown hair is still hidden beneath my wig while trying not to really see the mirror, sometimes you see too much when you look too hard, and sometimes someone else looks back.

Layla thinks she’ll win; Layla has always been a little blind. She gives every day to her little plan, she thinks she’ll kill me, or fix me, or something. Six days a week it’s high schools, shelters and old folks homes; servitude. Those hands the Mommy insisted were bred for holding tea cups and babies are getting rough and red from the scrubbing and scraping Layla fills her days with. I use strong lotion to fix the damage. Six days a week she pays. She pays for what she thinks are my sins and Silvie’s, she pays for her compliance. She keeps herself elbow deep in shit, and cries herself to sleep every night from loneliness. And she’ll keep paying, even though she knows there’s no one manning the till, as long as she thinks its working. She hates us that much.

Finished changing, wearing the blue dress now and having traded the black leather knee boots for clear sling back stilettos, I make my way back downstairs and into the lobby, different dress, different shoes; same animals drooling in the dark on cheap vinyl benches and lounge chairs. I missed last month’s moon, but tonight one of these dogs will bleed for me. Three nights a week I steal her sleep. Before she locked me in, I tried to tell her that it doesn’t matter what we want from this life; my God has a plan of its own, and true deities can’t be denied. She might have found a window, but I was given a key. My laughing Lord is proving its plan, paying back all those years with Layla’s band of jumping whores in green. And with the green It brings me choices, oh so many choices, all those dirty dogs and filthy bitches that need to be put down. It wants them all, but I discriminate, sometimes less is more.

Phoenix is up next. She’s a cute brunette with a tight ass and great moves, I hate this music, but I love this bit. She’s playing schoolgirl to Britney Spears, and sporting that classic catholic uniform, knee socks, glasses, pig tails, lollipop, the works. Its camp, but the spoons love it. With her back against the mirror, and her hands on her knees, she lowers herself, its one fluid movement that finds her squatting, knees open hands crossed, and lifting her skirt just enough to let the cat tease the dogs. Then she rolls forward and begins crawling, shoulders so low her pigtails drag against the stage, that crisp white top opening to give the spoons a peek at her artwork. At the edge of the stage she tucks her head and pulls a somersault, landing legs open, straddling the shoulders of the dog sitting at the foot of the stage. Pulling his head into her navel lands her another five spot, and with a nod and a wink she’s got him on the hook for a private show when she gets off stage. Anyone can use these moves, but Phoenix takes the time to use the music, to actually dance. Just for that she takes more tips off the stage than almost any other girl here. It’s with a slight edge when she tells me that she makes less money when I work; I tell her she needs to use the pole. We’re both only half serious, she’s got moves to spare up there, but when it comes to the pole, I fly.

After Phoenix is Candy; awkward as always with shoes as cheap as her name. Her song is short with heavy bass and lyrics that barely meet the rhythm, she moves like she’s never heard the music she chose; no commitment to the character. She looks like a girl trying to be sexy instead of one that just is. She doesn’t understand why she doesn’t make the kind of money we do, and often begs Phoenix and me to teach her. Phoenix might help, but I settle the girl with a dismissive glance, the last thing I need is another Silvie. I was watching from the window that day, I heard her trashing me to Layla when she should have been thanking me for sending her there instead of making a gift of her. That twisted fuck almost ruined everything with her ‘Legacy of Pain’; if I’d let her play her cards she would have gotten us both the hot needle. Layla couldn’t see it, but when you’re as close to your monster as I am, these things get easier to see.

Silvie wanted everyone to see her pain. I thought at first she cut herself because she was lost and hurting, but she needed the badge. She said ‘People won’t learn, Shadow, until the scars they make on the inside cut so deep they show on the outside too.’ After Lucy came the tattoos; smiley faces, each with some injury or defect, a scar, a bullet wound, one of them had a cancerous tumor bulging from its forehead. One smile for each of her ‘lessons’, she was eight deep by the time I had to stop her. The calling I’ve been given made it easy to understand most of Sadistic Silvie’s punishments, but when she wanted to take those two little boys for fighting in the park I knew I had indulged her too long. I nearly threw up when I saw those twin smiles on her hip; she had them clawing at each other’s eyes. Lucky for me, Silvie could barely maintain, when they came for her she broke quickly and began to rant so deeply they soon stopped paying attention to anything she said about me. It hurt to have to lose her, she was the only human that ever knew me, but I need to be free to serve my purpose, I have a higher calling.

There’s a pair of spoons in the corner, desperate dogs these two. The one on the left straightens when we make eye contact; it’s a done deal before I even reach the table and all I have to do is quote a price. Taking one grubby paw from each of them I lead them into a private room, using my hip I topple the first onto the bench seat and apply a little leverage to fling the second into the space beside him, I give Charlie the bouncer the nod and he draws the red velvet rope across the entry. I position them knee to knee, straddling the seat, and place myself on the smaller one’s lap with my back to him. I’m going on memory, now, using the movements and expressions I remember this body making when Layla let the boys play with our body. The big dog is almost a cliché, broad shouldered and slightly intimidating, dark shaggy hair, thick stubble across cheeks that feel like sandpaper, and eyes as dark as midnight; his partner is slight, at least a head shorter with long bright hair and a neat little goatee. As the music begins to climb I raise my arms and grab the ceiling rail, I use this to control my weight against their laps, making my movements more fluid. I present my bosom to the greedy eyes before me and rest my shoulders against the other one’s heaving chest. Using a combination of my memory and the music I slide my hips back and forth between them, the first and second beats of every measure belong to the darker one, the third and fourth to his companion. These dogs are well trained and although I can feel their appreciation clearly, they both keep their hands at their sides; I can tell the larger one is having a hard time being good, his big meaty paws clench and release in spasms and his breath begins to grow ragged against my nipples. The lesser one has better self control, and proves his nerve as I feel his lips against my ear; his hot breath delivers the question I’ve been waiting for, “So how’s a guy get a little more friendly with hot little piece like you?”

“612 Foccia Point, midnight, and its double for two so make sure you bring at least a thousand.”
“ Foccia? Like the bread?”
“Just like the bread.”
“A thousand sounds steep-"
“A thousand gets you both. Vanilla, you get me? You want more, you pay more. You want to pay less go find yourself a cheap whore and you’ll get what you pay for.” As I’m saying this I’ve turned to face him, I speak the words with my lips pressing against the creature’s smooth white belly, I feel it tremble and know I own him now.

When I turn my face up to him the world spins slightly and suddenly I feel like I’m using a mask; another face, another us, I’m pulling her strings like she’s some kind of sex puppet. I feel the heat growing in her thighs as I rub her ass against the silent partner’s chest, there’s something awake in her now; some deep need I can only vaguely feel. It’s not the same as sharing with Layla, there’s no person here, no other mind; there’s just a doll. But somehow the energy feeding from her sex is guiding me, helping me know what strings to pull; giving reason for my movements and lessoning my need to rely on the memory of those hot, sticky fumblings with high school boys that I found need to excuse myself from at the time. The smile my face shows is truly mine for a moment, another gift; another tool to serve my Master’s purpose.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Alice- Crossing the Chessboard

That horrible grin hangs foreboding in the sky tonight, as if mocking me and I feel that chill, that rush of need, and the pain that comes from its denial. I feel the restless thumping from the thing inside me, that part of me I must never again allow to escape. My shoes make a hollow sound that echoes off the alley walls, other than me, and the restless chronic coughing coming from inside the shelter, this night is perfectly still. The fog rolls in from everywhere, it’s December in the city, and fingers of ice try to grab me with every step. I reach the spigot and begin to clean the filthy buckets and brushes, used so often to clear the vomit and human waste from the floors inside. The freezing water turns my fingers an angry red as I work; the pain twists my lips into smile. The payment for today has begun. Once I ran from even the slightest pain, gratefully letting Alice take the wheel, now I make myself feel it, because not giving in means a small victory.

For years I thought that Alice was my better half. She was stronger than me, and quicker to know the answers, it took me a long time to realize that just because you have an answer quickly, doesn’t mean it’s the right one. I was weak, and needful, I thought that she knew how to make us strong; I didn’t listen when everything else inside me was screaming that we needed to be good as well. I let her drive for so long, and watched as she tore at the walls of our little world until they came crumbling down. I watched her destroy a transient in the park, because he tried to make a victim of us, I watched her tear apart one teen aged girl to help another feel a little more real, and then turn disloyal as a serpent, and betray her as well. She thought I couldn’t see from inside that place, she thought I had no idea what she was up to, but I found a window, and sometimes I peeked. I’ll never forget the look of panic and shame on my sweet Silvie’s face when she realized that Alice wasn’t human. I let her do these things because I thought I was not strong enough to stop her. These are my sins.

I have sought forgiveness the traditional ways; I begged a meeting with a priest. Unable to be completely honest with him, but wanting desperately to find hope in his words, I learned that as far as his God is concerned, I’m a lost cause. I guess it’s better anyway; you can’t pay penance something you’re sure is a lie. I’ve always kind of admired the type of people who can believe in things like Gods. It’s like getting to believe in magic forever. Even Alice had something to believe, her ‘Smiling Lord’, often guided her to things and acts that normal people would have no part of, but at least she has something to blame, something that will exonerate her.

I had to create my own means of salvation. First comes sacrifice, I must relieve myself of all pleasures; that means cold food, uncomfortable furniture, and I must never so much as make eye contact with a man. I must pay back the carnage she dealt with my hands, so I work at the shelters and at the high school, doing the most disgusting, most degrading, things I can find, and return my pay to these causes. Atonement means a lot of things. Tomorrow I’m scheduled for a visit with my darling Silvie, her doctors think it will be good for her, they gave her a pass. I think it’s a sweet irony that we’ll meet, nearly unsupervised, in a park. I must face her and accept all the things I’m sure she has to say.

“Just a reminder, gentlemen, it’s curfew in 15 minutes.” I say in a clear voice, without looking up, as I slip past the walking dead and through the back door, their cloud of nicotine swirling in my wake.

My thoughts unbroken I begin to strip the beds, the musty air from too often soiled mattresses creating a foul wind across my cheeks. I breathe deep, payment comes in many forms. After Silvie comes confession. I must find a way to be done with half truths and whole lies. I’m smarter than to go anywhere near a therapist. All those afternoons, bored with Dr. Ashton, trying to find something to say that sounded real and didn’t lead to Alice taught me therapists are either idiots, or not to be trusted. Alice had served her master twice before we met the good doctor and he never took his eyes off my tits long enough to see that we were lying.

There are guards around the palace; even as the commitment of speaking her most guarded truths sets its dark chill on my heart, I feel an absent twitch in my left hand, her hand. The movement is unnerving, it draws my suspicion that she will strengthen as she stews, but those horrible dreams filled with pain-ridden gore and moonlight celebration come less often now, something is working. That gives me hope that someday I will finally claim ownership of this body. Unbidden to the front of my mind come two images; the first is almost comforting in its familiarity, her face, not so different from mine with just subtle changes, she has green eyes and a more slender chin, high cheek bones and bright red hair, cut close to her head in the back and lengthening to points at her collar bones. She is a powerful beauty; one I am hoping very much to miss.

The second image cuts into my heart with the implication it brings, the thing I found in the nightstand drawer. So small I hoped it wasn’t real; I couldn’t even bring myself to touch it. The tiny white triangle not half the size of my pinky nail, the slender cone and point of the canine, a trophy from that opossum eighteen years ago in Grandma’s woods. A trophy I thought I had destroyed; she must have ripped this tooth out of its skull before I cleaned house.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Alice- Sitting for Tea

We’ve been juggling a lot. It’s more me driving than her now; Layla’s kind of stopped trusting herself. I was able to get us rid of Seth, she still doesn’t really know what happened, but I was able to convince her we’re better off without him. ‘Besides’, I told her, ‘it’s senior year and all those pretty bitches and their pom-poms need you.’ She hates it when I call them that, but she agrees with me, they need her now more than ever. I only care about the team because the training has proven useful to my smiling Lord.

Something happened to Lucy, she went missing from the mall. They made a really big deal out of it, it was all over the news ‘What happened to Lucy Sumner?’ her Daddy’s big leaky blue eyes, looking desperately into the camera, begging, “Anyone who knows anything, please …”

And there’s us, it’s Layla on the screen, but those are my words she’s whispering, “She said she was going to meet someone, a college boy, she was real excited about it, bought a new dress and everything, I asked her not to go…”and then she turns our face, looking a little more determined now, a little more sure, “Lucy, please, if you’re out there watching, please come home, at least call your folks?”

I even had her start a ‘Finding Lucy’ hotline, it worked like a charm. The cops did only a cursory line of questioning, and for weeks Layla had to endure all manner of people telling her it wasn’t her fault Lucy disappeared. It made it easy to talk her into letting me have a few more turns. She knows it’s me that has kept us safe, she can trust my decisions.

Silvie knows she doesn’t have to be afraid of us, now. Layla and I talked it over; she knows we need a friend. Silvie’s different, too, she’s not different the same way we are, but she has her own special strangeness. She’s got the market pinned on rage, it’s almost creepy to watch her when she really lets go.

It was an even bigger deal when they found Lucy. Words like ‘monster’ and ‘depraved’ flew around like pigeons in Trafalgar Square. I’ll agree, we got a little carried away, maybe had a little too much fun, it had to be a shock for them to find her like that, tied to that bicycle, with all those things Silvie left inside her, and all those pieces missing. Silvie serves her gods with a certain artistic grace; it was a celebration, a baptism, if you will. She laughed when we talked about it, “If they’d really known Lucy, they’d use words like ‘fitting’ and ‘punishment’.”

I know there was more than just Lucy in Silvie’s rage that day, but for Silvie, Lucy was the poster child for high school tormentors. I put Silvie on the team. Of course, those dumb whores took some time to accept her, but with a little grooming Silvie’s almost normal looking, and the one thing that makes Layla invincible is our gymnastics. No one can pull off the stunts we can, well with a little training, now Silvie’s got a few tricks up her sleeves, too.

It’s kind of nice to hear my name aloud, in a voice that isn’t Layla’s. Silvie understands about the moon, she sees the same smile I do, but it doesn’t own her. Anger and pain are her masters. I’m growing quite fond of this particular human; she’s the only one who hasn’t made my skin crawl at her touch. The three of us talk for hours in the park, naked in Silvie’s arms, under the fan of that old willow. This place is special to me, Silvie understands why, she can’t wait for her own temple to be ready, she knows it may be a while before they get the place cleaned up and stop watching it, though.

And, still, something needs to be done about Layla. With Seth out of our picture, she’s back to swinging our ass around and flirting with every boy she sees. Silvie and I going to Tainted Flesh on the weekend, she wants a tattoo to remind her of Lucy, I think it’s silly, but I have an idea that will keep Layla chaste. I can’t let her do something stupid again. It’s been months since my grinning God has given me orders, and I know that in a few days, I’ll be allowed to serve again. There’s no way I’m gonna let her screw it up for me.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Alice- In the Tolgey Wood

We’re in Gym class when it happens. Standing in line, dressed in that strange bright yellow uniform, and listening to Mz. Feinlin give elaborate instructions on how to properly execute a jumping jack, because we’re apparently all assholes who can’t get it right.

We’ve been a little crampy this morning, not enough to cause concern, but this is a sudden, deep searing, pain. It rips through our abdomen and causes me to double over, bringing visions to our mind of a giant, using his big meaty hands to squeeze our insides, sending me into a cold sweat, setting our whole world ablaze.

Alice…” Her name spills from my lips as the tears spill from my eyes; a Pavlovian response to the pain, Alice always takes the pain. But Alice isn’t coming; I can hear her laughter as I move, still crouching, toward the locker room. Mz. Fienlin is at my side, her big man-hands on my shoulders, worry thickening her deep german accent. With some confusion I understand that she wants me to lie down in her office, something about a cot there, and a cool towel.

As I enter the locker room she’s motioning to Silvie to go with me. Poor little Silvie Jacobs looks panic stricken; Mz. Feinlin doesn’t know that Silvie’s scared of me, Silvie doesn’t know that it’s Alice she’s really scared of. She also doesn’t know that she has no reason to fear Alice, Alice likes Silvie. There’s something about that untidy brown hair and too big glasses Alice finds endearing.

“Um… Layla?” Silvie’s voice is cracking; she looks lost in her clothes. They’re rumpled, like they’ve been jammed in the bottom of a back pack, and are so baggy they look like they were bought for someone else, all Silvie’s clothes look that way, it’s why Lucy Sumner and the rest of the cheerleaders won’t give the poor girl a second’s peace, Silvie thinks I’m one of them because I’m a cheerleader, too. It’s guilt by association, but who can blame her, really?

“Yeah?” Lips pursed and breathing heavy, little droplets of sweat flying from my mouth as I answer.

“Here.” She presses a cool towel into my hand; I push my face into it, welcoming the cold cloth against my fevered forehead. I’m trying my hardest to call to Alice in my mind, begging her to come and take the pain. Silvie half helps, half rolls me onto the cot, I have enough time to force a deep breath and a slight smile of thanks before that sadistic giant wraps his hands around my abs and rips my insides to bits.

Rolling back off of the cot and crawling, with shaking limbs, I barely make it to the bathroom and into the handicap stall before the blood lets loose across my thighs. With the site of it, comes that sweet release on my exhale, Alice has come, at last, to save me.


I let Layla take the first part of the pain because she needed it. I knew it was coming. My smiling Lord has made me stronger since that first beautiful night, a gift for pleasing its need. When I come to take the pain for Layla, I use this new gift, I send her completely away. I see her, in our mind crawling, between the walls in our old house, to that special place only we knew about; I make her hide there. The pain I let her feel makes her grateful to do it.

Layla’s internal giant begins to push its poison from our body; deep cramps force my breathing into shallow gasps the pain is coming in waves now. I pull myself up, hugging the toilet, reaching in to bring some of the cold water in the bowl to my skin. There is a deep pulling from within me as the thing inside finally breaks loose and finds its way out of my body. There is a soft, wet splash on the tile as it comes to rest between my knees.

Sweet Silvie is just outside the stall and hears the small thud made by the dead thing as it lands. I hear her gasp, telling me she’s peaked under the door, she knows what was happening, just like I’ve known for weeks now that it would.

I figured it out while I was in control, making plans to silence that cur in the park. The blood wasn’t coming when it was supposed to, and the calendar confirmed. For weeks, every night, while Layla slept, I worked the pressure points at the insides of our hips, first fingers of both hands pressing deep, trying to choke our ovaries, to end the thing inside us.

It lays there, now in its puddle of blood, that salty wine covering what would have been a face, if given time. A life that has never been is not the same as one that I have taken; this fleshy blob will not make a good gift for my grinning God, and therefore will not have a place with my other treasures.

Coming back together, using the locker room showers to clean my body and free my mind, I decide on the next step. Dressing, and telling Silvie to get back into street clothes, I take her hand, without another word, and lead her off campus, a few blocks from the school to a park nearby. Unlike the park by our house there are no willow trees here, just a few medium sized apple trees, and one old and gnarled oak.

This park stands near the center of town, and this tree has to have stood for nearly a hundred years. The roots are as thick as your arm and sticking up in places, crisscrossing on themselves, leaving you with the impression of knotted ropes. Up close to the trunk there is a place where the roots entangle; with a little imagination you can see the shape of a heart. Layla and I found it when we were little, and as far as we can tell, we’re the only ones who know that if you lift carefully from the center point of the heart and slide the roots to the left, there is a hollow in the trunk beneath it.

Silvie catches my eye as I reach for my bag, she’s confused by my silence, and moves her mouth as though to speak, I hold a finger to her lips and pull the package free. I’d long been keeping my pot stash in my gym locker, to keep the Mommy’s thieving hands off of it. Away from Silvie’s curious eyes, I’d emptied the blue aluminum box into my bag and placed the fetus, wrapped carefully in bandages from Mz. Feinlin’s first aide kit, inside. For close to three months this thing had tried to live inside me, the fleshy result of it’s attempt is not longer than three inches and the weight of the bandages swaddling it are more than that of the thing itself.

I hear Silvie gasp as I lean close and kiss the lid, before placing the box, carefully inside the tree. There is a new kind of pain in this action, something so much more real than any pain I’ve ever felt. As the tears spring from my eyes and make their salty tracks I realize the difference in this pain is that it comes from within. The wound that has caused it is not something one can dress, or suture, it is the pain of a human soul, and it is entirely new to me.