Red Cells

I got out of my car and started across the parking lot, making my way towards the hospital entrance. I had an appointment with my psychiatrist.

I saw a large woman walking in front of me, and I glanced at my reflection in the shiny black paint of an SUV beside me. I’d once been as large as that woman. I still wasn’t thin, but I prided myself on having lost as much weight as I had. And, though I was slightly ashamed to admit it (even if it was only to myself), I was proud that I looked better than the woman who was walking in front of me.

I went into the hospital and boarded the elevator, riding up to the third floor. I checked in with the secretary at Dr. Moreno’s office, offering my new insurance card. I smiled at the secretary. I’d always liked her.

The small waiting area was full, so I went out to wait in the corridor. After a short while, the people in the waiting area left, and I went to sit down. I turned on my Kindle to read, only to find that the battery was dead. Damn. I’d thought I’d charged it.

I shut off the Kindle and sighed, folding my hands in my lap. I’d always been good at sitting silently. I didn’t really even get bored. My mind turned in slow circles, perhaps pondering the events of recent days, or even incidents ten years passed.

A little more than twenty minutes went by in this way, and then I heard Dr. Moreno’s voice – tinged with a strong Latin accent – calling out my initials. I rose from my seat and went down the corridor, smiling at Dr. Moreno as she ushered me into her office.

“Hello,” Dr. Moreno said, crossing the room to sit down in her chair in front of her computer. “How are you?”

“I’m well, and yourself?” I replied.

“Very good, thank you. How have you been feeling overall?”

“Nothing to complain about, really,” I answered. “There’s just one thing, though. Last time I was in, we discussed discontinuing the Topiramate, but I’ve decided to stay on it.”

“Well, whatever works for you, of course,” Dr. Moreno said. “That particular drug has many benefits, including anxiety and craving reduction. It can help with lowering your alcohol intake, too, which I know is an issue for you.”

I said nothing. Dr. Moreno was aware that I was an alcoholic, but we didn’t always talk about it. She accepted state insurance, which meant that she had a ton of patients, and probably had a lot of difficulty remembering everything about them. I liked her, though. She was a good person.

“Let’s have a look at your most recent bloodwork,” she said, pulling up the file. It was the same bloodwork she’d looked at during my last two visits, but I didn’t want to be rude.

“Everything’s normal,” she said, “except your red blood cells.”

She turned the computer monitor towards me. “You see this number here? It’s a little high, which means your red cell count is a little more than it should be. If you keep drinking heavily, they’ll continue to increase – and we both know that the vessels they pass through can’t get any bigger. That’s what causes strokes and heart attacks.”

“I see,” I said politely. She’d never explained it so concisely before, and though I was mildly concerned, I wasn’t exactly terrified.

“I can help you with your drinking problem, if you’re ready to take that step,” she offered.

“I’m not,” I said simply.

“Can you explain why?” she asked. “What’s your reason for drinking? Do you have anxiety? Problems sleeping? Is it a form of self-medication?”

I smiled thinly. “I just drink,” I replied.

She nodded without comprehension. “And you’re not willing to seek treatment?”

“No,” I returned. “I’m not willing.”

She nodded again. “All right, then.”

“But thank you,” I added. “I appreciate you taking the time to ask.”

“Of course,” she said. “Now – have you had any thoughts of harming yourself or others? Any voices or visions?”

She asked this question every time. My answer was always “no.”

“All right,” she repeated. “I’ll see you in three months.”

“Thank you for your time, Dr. Moreno,” I said.

She smiled, and I got up to leave. I booked an appointment for January with the secretary, then walked out of the office.

I checked my watch. Nearly three o’clock. I had a few errands to run before I went home, and it was supposed to rain. But I had no umbrella.

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Road Rage

She sat by the window with a cup of coffee, watching the rain swirl over the glass in inexplicable patterns. She couldn’t decide if she wanted to listen to music or not. She loved music, but sometimes it grated against the edges of her nerves. On quiet mornings she liked a little light classical, or maybe a film score, but sometimes she preferred the silence.

The apartment was empty. The apartment was always empty. She’d lived alone since she left home a few years ago. She didn’t even have any friends, really. The old man in the apartment next door was fond of her, and she chatted with people online, but all day, she sat alone in this room. At night, she slept alone in her bed. The thick darkness of her bedroom suffocated her. Her isolation mocked her. But she was comfortable with it.

She’d lost her temper yesterday while she was driving. She had to slow down for someone pulling into a parking lot, and a young man behind her threw up his hands in anger, shouting and swerving around her, only to pull right in front of her and veer into a restaurant lot.

Sometimes, things like that happened, and she didn’t even bat an eye. But this struck a chord. She laid on her horn and shouted obscenities the guy couldn’t even hear. She knew he heard the horn, but she also knew he didn’t care. He was probably amused that he’d irked her. People like that get a rush from irking you.

Even now, sitting in the stillness and the silence, watching the rain making its strange journey on the windowpane, she was mildly irritated. Mostly because she’d allowed herself to lose her temper. She was the type of person who had very little control over their outbursts (or lack thereof). She was aware of this, but usually it didn’t bother her. Today it did.

She took a sip of her coffee, trying to think of something to put on the stereo. With a sigh of resignation, she rose from her chair. She’d decided on the score from Fifty Shades of Grey.

TV Time

Shuffle, shuffle, shuffle

Run, run, run

Hurry, hurry, hurry

As fast as you can

So many things to do

So many things left undone

By the dip of the sun.

Night settles

For the thousandth time

And as you sit

With your drink

Eyes on the

TV screen

Wondering where

The day went

Your mind slows

Peace for now

Until the morrow.

Cyberspace

Electronic beats drop a line

Steady hum and drum on low, back of my mind

Words set out in a row

Black font on a grey background.

Birds singing in the trees outside

Nature mingling with technology.

Social media notifications fall like an IV drip

Click the tab to see what’s going on

Lost in the unreal world of the Internet

Brain disconnected from the body.

Post Malone: Stoney

A couple of months ago, I listened to “Beerbongs and Bentleys” by Post Malone, and was incredibly impressed with the whole album. It was the best I’d heard in a long time. Just a few days ago, though, I listened to Post’s “Stoney” for the first time, which came out before “Beerbongs.” And really, I think I like “Stoney” even better. It’s more real, raw, and a little less commercial.

My favorite tracks off the album are “Broken Whiskey Glass,” “Cold,” and “I Fall Apart.” But really, I just love the whole thing. In the way all solid albums are, it’s completely fluid and cohesive. The four collabos are all very well done. I really like “Feel” with Kehlani.

There are a lot of things that draw me to Post as an artist. His substance addiction is made inherently obvious in his music, and he seems like a downtrodden romantic at heart. My kind of guy.

This is perfect chill music. Great for writing, great for kicking back with a drink. You can’t go wrong with Post. A review of “Beerbongs” will be coming soon.

Stoney (Explicit): View on Amazon

Stoney (Clean): View on Amazon

Stoney (Explicit) [Deluxe]: View on Amazon

Stoney (Clean) [Deluxe]: View on Amazon

That Night

A 1,500-word short story recounting a forbidden encounter between two women. Contains explicit material; intended for mature audiences only.

***

She came to me when he was asleep. She loved him, and she would never intentionally hurt him.

But I was enamored of her. Her art; her words; her spirit and her kindness. They sated something in me like nothing had done in so long.

The rain was pouring as if God were angry. Perhaps He was. Perhaps He was angry with me. In any case, I opened the door for her and ushered her inside, relishing the way her coat dripped against my skin as she entered.

I closed the door softly. Lightning illuminated the window beside the door; then thunder shook the house. We stood there staring at each other, no more than two feet separating us.

“Thank you for coming,” I said quietly.

“I shouldn’t have,” she replied, her voice even softer than mine. “But I wanted to.”

“You did?” I inquired. In a way, I knew it was true, but at the same time I was surprised.

“You know I did,” she answered, scolding me a little with her tone.

“Can I – can I take your coat?” I asked, my voice breaking.

“Yes.”

She shrugged out of the wet coat and handed it over to me. I carried it to one of the pegs by the door, trying to resist the urge to bring it to my nose and inhale its scent. I had never smelled her before. I wanted to smell her.

I walked back to her, fighting the temptation to reach out and twirl my finger through her damp red locks. Her pale throat was shining with rainwater. I wanted nothing more than to kiss it gently.

“What have you come for?” I asked, almost afraid to hear her reply.

“You know the answer to that, too.”

“Are you sure?”

My voice was barely audible.

“I’ve thought about it,” she added. “I’m sure.”

“Come into the living room,” I said, reaching out for her hand. I didn’t know if she would take it – but she put her fingers through mine without hesitation.

I’d had a recurring fantasy lately that involved having her while she was seated on my sofa. It she was down for it – and it seemed like she was – I was going to make that fantasy a reality. Right now.

I led her by the hand towards the sofa, stopping just in front of it and turning to face her. “Can I take off your clothes?” I inquired. The fear and anxiety were suddenly leaving me. A feeling of control was slowly seeping through my veins. I’d been cold before she arrived, but now my skin was flushed and hot.

“Yes,” she breathed.

She was wearing a sleeveless black dress that contrasted perfectly with her red hair and white skin. It halted halfway down her calves, exposing her shapely legs and her bright red stilettos.

I stepped up to her, circling my arms around her back. That simple motion felt so good, I breathed a sigh of relief against her mouth. I pulled her close, pressing our breasts together, searching for the zipper of her dress. I found it quickly, then brought it down, moving away from her a little to let the dress fall to the floor.

I immediately brought her back to me, reaching around for the fastening of her bra. I unhooked it, pulled it away from her breasts, and dropped it down on top of the dress.

I looked into her eyes for a long moment, working my fingers through the wet hair at the back of her neck, her warm breath against my lips. I leaned in to kiss her, feeling the slickness escaping from between my legs. I reached down with my right hand to cup her breast, smiling through the kiss as she moaned into my mouth.

She was still wearing her stilettos, but that didn’t matter. I guided her firmly to the sofa, lowering her down to sit against the cushions. I hooked my thumbs under the waistband of her panties, looking directly into her eyes. She gazed at me unblinkingly.

Without taking my eyes away from hers, I began to pull her panties down. I brought them to her knees, then let them fall on top of her bright red shoes.

She was completely exposed to me. It was time to live my fantasy.

I kissed her right knee, reveling in the tiny shivers caused by the pressure of my lips. Then I kissed my way slowly up the inside of her soft, pale thigh. I listened to the changes in her breathing. It was getting faster, sharper.

I laid my hands on her hips, pulling her towards my face. I licked her thigh, then bit it gently. Her fingers were twined in my hair.

I paused in front of her pussy lips, closing my eyes and inhaling her scent. I’d been longing for this moment. I touched the tip of my nose to her slit, breathing deep. Every woman smelled so different, and it was always impossible to describe. Always some subtle combination of sweetness and spice.

Her combination was perfect. I just knelt there in front of her for a few moments, her fingers massaging my head, my eyes shut tight. Then I leaned forward and kissed her moist lips.

The taste was even better than the smell.

I ran my tongue slowly along her slit, making her shudder as if with a bitter wind. I hadn’t even separated her lips yet, and her juices were already leaking into my mouth.

She was enjoying this as much as I was.

I ran my tongue in two more lines: top to bottom, then bottom to top. I opened her lips with my thumbs, taking one long lick, tasting everything at once. It almost sent me into sensory overload. I gripped her hips and pulled her against my face, shoving my tongue inside her, desperate to please her. She pulled my hair and I grinned.

I slid my tongue in and out, drinking her nectar, making her shake. Then I lapped at her, slowly, quickly, slowly again, ending at her clit with each lick, pressing it firmly with the tip of my tongue.

She was dripping down onto the sofa, oozing onto my face, grinding violently against my mouth. She was losing herself to me in this saturated, empty moment.

I fastened my lips around her hot, swollen bud, sucking it fiercely, sliding three fingers inside her and pumping with vigor. She pressed her back against the cushions, pushing herself down on my face, flowing quickly into my mouth. The muscles of her thighs were beginning to clench and spasm. I sucked harder, pumped faster.

Then – she came. So hard. It was like a tidal wave. It was like the thunder that was still shaking the house. She clutched my head with her thighs, locking it in place, making sure I couldn’t get away. Not that I would have wanted to.

I withdrew my fingers from her opening, but I kept licking her while she rode the steep waves of her orgasm, up and down, until she finally crested the last swell and ended up at the bottom. Her thighs released my head, and I unearthed my face from her hot, soaking pussy, laying my cheek wearily against her soft thigh.

When she recovered a little, she rubbed my back, then massaged my head. “Let’s go to your bed,” she said.

“Do you have time?” I asked quietly, not really wanting to move away from the pillow of her smooth leg.

“I do,” she replied. “And, since this will be the only time – I want to make sure you get what you need.”

She took my hands in hers, pulling me off the floor. I crawled up her body and sat on her lap, laying my head against her chest. I could feel her heartbeat.

She rocked me for a few minutes, running her fingers through my hair. Then she tilted my face to kiss my wet lips, sliding her warm tongue into my mouth. She breathed into me, and my heart expanded.

“Bring me to your bed,” she whispered, kissing my forehead, my cheeks, the tip of my nose.

I nodded silently, then climbed off her lap. I reached down for her hand, pulled her up beside me, then led her back towards the dark corridors which enveloped the small bedroom where I would spend the remaining hours of our last – and only – night together.

Lightning flashed; thunder cracked.

I wondered what God was saying.

 

***

 

Thanks for reading . . .

C.M.