Today’s short story is brought to you by our guest blogger Trevvor Riley. If you want to submit your work for consideration please email queendATpoolboymagazineDOTcom and check out our submissions page for more details.
Milk Protein & Honey
She’s naked. Except her socks are on.
I’m naked and my socks are off and I’m on top of her kissing her neck and her breasts. I’m licking her stomach and kissing it and taking her nipples into my mouth gently and kissing her neck and her breasts with very light kisses and her eyes are closed and she’s making tiny noises.
I look down at myself but there’s something wrong with myself. I’m thinking too much about the phone calls I keep getting from my ex-girlfriend and about how I should be working on something right now and about how I just read this article on how people keep killing one other.
She’s so goddamn beautiful, I’m thinking. What’s wrong with me? Her body is pale and smooth and fragile and she’s so god damn pretty she should be on display somewhere. What’s wrong with me?
I reach down and feel her with my fingers and she’s wet and I want her so badly I can’t stand it and I grab myself but I’m completely limp. I must be broken. Something’s wrong with me. I shouldn’t be this way. Maybe I should ask her to take me to the emergency room? We’ll go to the emergency room, we’ll sit and wait and the doctor will call me in and she’ll sit in the waiting room and drink the water from those tiny paper cups and the doctor will look at my face and he’ll say: “What in the hell’s wrong with you, kid?”
As I kiss her more I slowly put my finger in her and she breathes and moans a little and then pulls me down on top of her and I kiss her, kiss her, kiss her and she’s holding onto me really tight and her face is warm and I can feel her trembling. At least I think it’s her trembling. But, nothing’s happening. Nothing at all. And I collapse on her and say: “I’m sorry…sorry. I don’t know what’s wrong with me…”
My socks are still on but I don’t care because we’re both naked now.
He’s kissing me and I can hardly think. He kisses my neck and boobs. He keeps kissing my boobs a lot. Does he think they’re small? And then he licks my stomach a little. He licks it so lightly it tickles and then kisses it over and over in a pattern as if he’s drawing a map on me.I’m smiling but my lips aren’t and I can hear myself making sounds and he’s kissing me all over and these huge waves of nervousness are passing over me. My eyes are closed but I feel like I can see everything. Like literally everything around me. Everything in my room and him on top of me and everything. I can see his broad chest, it’s sculpted and the shape of his face, his high cheekbones and his scarred biceps.
His hands are on me now. They were the first thing I was attracted to. And then his fingertips are moving slowly down me and he’s touching me and I’m really wet. Am I too wet? Does he think that I’m too wet? One of his fingers goes in me and it feels like an earthquake inside me and I let out a sound I didn’t mean to make and I’m almost embarrassed but then I don’t care because I just want him to be in me and kissing me so badly that I pull him down on me and he kisses me and I can’t think of anything and I’m dizzy and he’s trembling and I can feel his heart and then I feel him and he’s not hard at all. It feels small on my thigh. It feels small and not hard and he’s letting himself down onto me like he’s exhausted and he’s saying he’s sorry and he doesn’t know what’s wrong with him. And I’m thinking I must’ve done something wrong or he thinks I’m ugly or I don’t know what.
“Can we have a drink?” I ask with my face in her pillow. “Do you still have some of that vodka and orange juice?”
“Yeah, I do.” She says.
I get up from the bed and put my jeans on. Then turn the light on.
“Can you turn the light off?” She says.
She gets off the bed and I watch her naked body move through the darkness of the room, almost glowing from the little bit of moonlight coming in through the window. She puts on a bra, a shirt, some pants and then the light comes on. I step near her to kiss her and she looks into the other room.
“I’ll go get it. Do you really want orange juice?”
“Yeah, that’s good.”
She leaves the room and I stand there. I look down at my body, feel stupid and then look for my iPhone. I find it under my shirt at the foot of the bed and look at it. Seventeen missed calls and two texts. The first text reads: ‘N’ the second: ‘O’ I see there’s a voicemail and I tap it and start to listen to it. She sounds drunk and like she’s been crying and says through her drunk, crying voice: “Why are you doing this? Why won’t you just answer?” The voicemail is like four minutes long but I stop there and I’m thinking about how bad I wish I didn’t listen to that much even and I pull the phone away from my ear.
I come back into the room and he’s pulling his phone away from him like he’s hiding something, like he was pretending he wasn’t on it and it makes me feel even more like shit. I’m thinking, Who is he talking to? And then I’m thinking that I’m not even in the mood to care anymore. I set the orange juice and vodka down on my desk by my computer and then two shot glasses and two other small glasses. He walks towards me and throws his phone down across the room onto my wicker chair and I’m just feeling like I don’t want him here anymore.
He takes the vodka up into his hand and looks at it and half-smiles and says something actually funny and I laugh and he pours the vodka into the shot glasses and picks up the orange juice.
“Do you want it shaken?” He asks. I say yes and he flips it into the air and almost drops it and tries to spin the top off and we both start laughing. He pours the orange juice and then he looks into my eyes and I want to look away but can’t and he takes me by my waist and pulls me to him and he kisses me and I let him and sort of kiss back but then push him away softly and he picks up our drinks.
“Wait. I want music.” I say holding the shot glass and the orange juice. “Play that song, there.”
He double clicks the song. It’s Daniel Johnston. Worried Shoes.
“Let’s do it.” I say. We raise our glasses. I haven’t done a shot in months and I’m nervous. “I haven’t done a shot in months.” I say. “I’m nervous.” He smiles and we do them but I can only do half and drink a lot of orange juice after.
“Wasn’t bad, right?” He asks.
“I didn’t drink it all.” I say.
He pours himself another shot and we do them again. And then he pours two more. This time he only pours me a half shot and that’s sort of sweet and then we do those shots and then I look over at my bookshelf and am feeling sort of drunk already. I notice a sketch book from when I was in school. The song is playing and it’s making things seem sad and making me nostalgic all of a sudden. I made a mistake and I never forgot. I hear the song say and he’s pouring us two more shots and I say, mainly to take my mind off of being sad, but inevitably feeling like saying it and doing it will make me sadder:
“Do you want to see my sketchbook from when I was in school?”
“Yes. Definitely. Yes.” He says, looking at the bookcase. I take the book down and hold it carefully and we do those other shots and I think I’m drunk. We sit down next to each other on my footstool that’s the shape of a dwarf-like camel and he pushes the Urban Outfitters catalogue away on the ground with his foot and I look at his feet and I’m thinking they seem small and then I open the sketchbook on our laps and he looks at it, excited like, like a little kid or something. His eyes darting around the page.
“This is bad. All of it. But, I don’t know.” I say.
“No, no. I like it already.”
It’s this drawing of a face and the face is this girl’s face but then becoming this guy’s face and I drew it when I was probably sixteen and I don’t know. I turn page after page and he stares at it intently. I think he looksinterested or at least he’s pretending good. I turn another page and he stops me.
“This. Tell me about it.” He says putting his hand on the book.
I don’t feel like telling him but I actually kind of do because I think I like him maybe and so I stare at it longer. It’s a drawing of me in a bathtub and there’s a huge grandfather clock near the bathtub and underground beneath the bathtub there’s like these eyes in the dark looking up at me like someone’s living under the tiles of the bathroom.
“When I was nine. Um, everytime I’d like look at the clock or something, it’d be the same time and it was always 9:11 or, or 11:11. Always, like every single time I’d look and so that’s the clock. But, then one time when my mom was gone from the house I was gonna take a bath so I filled it with water and I looked at the clock in the living room and it was like 11:02 and I felt like I was like older or something all of a sudden and so I went in the bath and tried to drown myself…But, I realized you can’t do that, so I just got out and went in my room and just laid there for a long time…”
She sits there quietly and stares at the page and then she turns the page still without saying anything and it’s this scrapbook type thing of these people with strings coming off of them and maps for faces and feathers for hair and I keep thinking about her story and looking at her smooth skin and her hands and I can smell her perfume and I’m thinking, Jesus Christ this stuff she’s made is better than anything I’ve ever seen or done and I’m thinking I think I’m in love with her already.
“I don’t know, that’s like the end. The rest are just unfinished or ruined.” She says. I take a drink of the orange juice.
“I love them all.” I say.
“Yeah, really, really. A lot.”
She stands up and goes to the desk and pours herself a shot and I ask her to pour me some of the vodka into the glass of orange juice I’m holding and she does it and then does a shot and then I hear my phone vibrating and I instantly feel bad again. I grab it from the chair and stuff it in my back pocket and with every tiny vibration I’m feeling worse and worse.
“I’m gonna go to the bathroom.” I say. And my shoes took me down a crooked path.
“Okay.” She half-smiles and sits down at the computer and opens up Facebook.
I step into the bathroom and close the door and turn on the light and then turn it off and then on again. I look at myself in the mirror and my face is not the way it used to look when I was young. Who is this person looking at me? I take out my phone and look at it. Suddenly, all of a sudden, it seems like the god damned gravity on Earth has increased and my throat is expanding making me feel suffocated and my vision is like a blur. There’s seventeen more missed calls and six texts and some pictures she sent. I am about to click on them but I don’t and I just erase everything. The missed calls and the pictures and the texts and I stand there and don’t feel regret or anything. I actually don’t feel much of anything. I just feel like going back out of the bathroom and so I wash my hands and then do that.
He comes back out and I turn around and I’ve just put on a song by The Cure and he has his phone in his hand but he sets it on my desk and it’s turned off and he leans down and kisses me right as the song starts in and he does this all in one long movement that seems completely natural and feels really like a movie or something, but I’ve never read the script so I just let him lead and he takes my hand and leads me to the bed and lays me down.
And then he’s kissing me again and I’m drunk and okay with that. I can feel all our skin touching and it feels like something’s different now and we’re kissing a lot, a lot and very hard and he’s breathing so deeply again and he’s nervous so deeply again and he’s trembling so deeply again and pulling off my clothing with just his fingertips, kissing me and my eyes closed and I see colors, not blackness and I open my eyes and his eyes are closed and his jeans are to his knees and we are breathing at the same time and he’s in me and holding me and it feels like we’re not even in anywhere, we’re like outside of everywhere…
I lay down next to her and we lay quietly like this for a long time. I think she’s asleep. I feel her asleep, I think. I think I won’t be able to sleep for a very long time tonight again. And when I finally do, I know I’ll have that same dream:
The one where I’m in the middle of this corral in this field. And I’m standing there and I can feel my bones starting to dissolve inside my body and it’s the worst pain I’ve ever felt but I’m not moving or doing anything about it, just letting it happen because I can’t stop staring at this tall beautiful tree covered in red and orange leaves and it’s growing these severed heads of infants out of its branches like apples and I’m standing there with my bones dissolving, staring at it, staring at it.
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