A few years ago ….
Today, in 2012, I avoid him as much as I can. But my friend (?) Richard used to joke (?) that I only called him when I broke up with my boyfriends. Kinda true, kinda false. Regardless — a few years ago — I don’t even call him this time, I just end up at his apartment for some small party.
He scents the pain in me, and suddenly we’re in a back room, alone. One of the reasons he’s so good at this is that he smells vulnerability like a shark smells blood. I don’t remember whether I ask him to hurt me, or he just grabs me. “Something’s close to the surface,” I tell him, while he leaves bite-shaped bruises on my upper arm. He knows me; he doesn’t leave bruises in places I can’t cover with a t-shirt.
“What is it?” he asks, and I choke on it. I’m already starting to cry. We’ve only been doing this for a moment.
“Red,” I say. The safeword. I’m sobbing. “Red.” Richard stops immediately. “Tears,” I say. “Tears were close to the surface.” Keep reading »