This is the story of my life
(5 - In the end, it's love)
I woke up in an unknown dark room still dressed in my stinky clothes, lying on an old bed. Cardboards on the floor, shelves against the walls with old magazines, cds – where the fuck was I?
Then I turned my head and saw Keller standing at the door staring at me. Shit; I remembered. He’d come to my room and taken me here. What for?
“What the fuck do you want?” I said, trying to get up and failing miserably, “Money? sex?”
He smiled, his lips stretching in a disgusted grin.
“I’d rather fuck my 80 year old neighbour than you right now; you stink. I’m not crazy about the beard either.”
“Fuck you! Why am I here?”
He stopped smiling, leaned against the door; I saw a flickering of doubt in his eyes.
“Take me back home, then.”
“Home? Are you talking about that hovel I found you in? No way; I think it should be disinfected before anyone sets foot inside.”
I looked at him, sat up, closed my eyes as the room began spinning around me.
“Whose fault is it if I have to live there? Who shattered my life to pieces?”
“Maybe you did to me in the first place; fucking me over; causing thirteen people to die.”
Ah, Keller, don’t play with me.
“Like you give a damn about anyone else’s death! Find something else; you make a pathetic moralizer.”
He threw me a towel to me.
“Go take a shower. Shave. Then we’ll talk.”
He wouldn’t kill me then. I looked at him, trying to read his mind, get beyond the impassable barrier of his eyes; but Keller was good at hiding, he’d spent his whole life concealing emotions. I rose, leaning against the wall for balance.
“You’re such a Samaritan, Keller!”
But the shower felt good, warm water running down my tired body, and the soft lather over my face a forgotten bliss. I took my time washing, shaving, giving a look at the organized room… I walked out still wet, water trickling from my hair down my neck, dressed in loose jeans. Well, loose for me, skinny as I was; probably tight enough for Keller.
I stepped into what looked like a living room; a red leather couch, a big flat screened TV, chairs, but on the table I saw a travelling bag and a gun, a real one, not just the kind of mock weapon you use as a defence; this baby was meant to *kill*, something like an assault weapon; special ops had those in TV series.
Well, I thought, some things never change.
Keller was standing by the window; he heard me, turned and I saw it in his eyes as they roamed over me, I saw it in his smile and in the way he strolled over to me, made me step back until my ass hit the wall. Naked lust, his eyes roaming all over me raising goose bumps.
“I might have ulterior motives,” he said, stroking my cheek.
Something clenched inside me, I felt sick but I didn’t move, I let him press his palm against my crotch – when he tried to kiss me I just turned my head.
He didn’t step back; he was warm and solid and hard against me; if he wanted me he was strong enough to take, no matter how hard I’d fight. The last party… I remembered what the guys had done and closed my eyes
/ Please don’t. /
He took a step back.
“I’m not a rapist,” he said, “and I don’t hurt kids either.”
“How do I know which rules apply? I don’t even know you anymore. Maybe I never did.”
“Not kids, Toby. I wouldn’t do that. Never.”
Uh, uh; he sounded… Hurt? I had that power, I could make him feel bad? Hurt him? I’d keep it in mind.
“OK,” I said.
“And I won’t force myself on you. You’ll come to me willingly.”
“Keep on dreaming, Keller. This is never going to happen.”
“We’ll see about that, Chiquita.”
I slapped him hard, saw his puzzled gaze, the red marks on his cheeks.
“Don’t call me that; I’m not some chick you can use to get laid.”
He didn’t slap me back, just looked at me for much too long with a frown and in the end he smiled; cold insincere grin, then turned away from me. Shit. How do you deal with someone like Keller? I realized I was shaking.
Later he told me he’d been taken off guard; until then he’d always been the wild unpredictable untamed one in any relationship but then… He had to deal with a brand new situation. An exciting situation.
He gave me a key so I could lock my door, feel safe; I spent the first weeks locked inside, sleeping; waiting until he was gone to fix myself something to eat –sometimes he’d ordered for the both of us –or shower or watch TV. He lived as if he’d been alone, not giving me the slightest sign of attention. After a while I stopped sleeping, slouched in front of the TV, and ignored him too.
It was summer, he kept the blinds closed to keep the apartment cool. It was pure coincidence of course that he had to brush against me so often, walked around half naked, his luscious body offered up to my eyes. I couldn’t miss how perfect he was, strong muscles rolling beneath tanned skin, long fingers brushing through papers on the table, playing with his cell phone, caressing it from base to top in a slow obsessive motion.
Christ, he was hot.
And I couldn’t miss the red ugly scar under his ribs either.
Hey Keller, stop playing; it’s not like I *never* saw you naked before, I said and he turned an innocent gaze to me.
“Hey, I don’t see what you mean, Beecher .” Light amused voice.
“What about your kids?” He asked me one day as I was quietly falling asleep in front of the TV. “You seemed pretty worried about for them; don’t you see them anymore?”
I looked at him. “Since when do you care about my kids, Keller? You pretty much made sure I wouldn’t see them anymore.”
He shrugged. Keller’s rule of life; never talk about the past. It’s over anyway and who knows, talking about it could revive it.
“The judge seemed to think I wasn’t exactly the kind of father they needed.”
“Bullshit,” Keller said, “what does a fucking judge know about that? Kids need a father; I bet you’re as good at being one as most of the rich guys I happen to know. I’m surprised that you didn’t fight for them more than you did. Stupid bitch said you couldn’t see them anymore and you just walked away? That’s Real bullshit.”
I sat up and shut the TV off.
“Guess what? Gen couldn’t really get come over the hooker part; she still thinks I lied to her, shattered her trust, played her for a fool.”
Keller dragged a chair closer and straddled it, his hands crossed on the back of the chair.
“Shit, that was long ago, Toby; you’ve had time to change. I bet back then she didn’t have anything to blame you for. I bet you were a very good father. Come on, why don’t you try again?
I lowered my head.
“You know, coming from you this is pretty strange; maybe you should’ve thought about that in the first place.”
“Maybe. But I think you should fight; your kids will ask you someday why you gave up on them so easily. You’re still their father.”
Yeah, he was right of course; my parents had told me something similar on the phone; not understanding why I didn’t struggle more. I missed my children, though, missed my lovely babies. I missed them every day, every hour, every time I saw something on TV that would’ve made them laugh, or cry, every time I saw a blond kid holding his father’s hand in the street.
I didn’t sleep very well that night.
Eventually I filed a request for a new trial and this time the judge gave me a chance; allowed me to be with my children one week-end a month; Gen didn’t try to fight the decision; it turned out Keller had been right, Gary had asked for me and Holly wanted me to tell her bedtime stories.
I came back from the court house smiling and Keller was waiting for me, let me tell my story.
“See? You should trust me more often,” he said with an unbearably smug smile and even before I could tell him that he was the one responsible for the mess, he asked where I intended to see them. I looked around gave a look around; the white walls, huge TV, red leather couch and… the loaded guns he kept in an unlocked closet, the closed suitcase and their mysterious content –drugs, money, whatever; his laptop, his cell-phones. And him. Not an appropriate place for two innocent kids.
“My parents’ place; I still have a room there.”
He nodded. “Sounds fine. Next week-end, then?”
“Yes. My father asked me to resume working too; looks like they could use an extra lawyer. As long as I don’t show up in court…”
Strangely I didn’t talk about moving out of his apartment and he didn’t mention it either. The place was nice, huge, cosy; close to my father’s office. And Keller was easy to live with.
That night he asked me to fuck him. As much as I was scared of being fucked, scared to let go, as much as I resented him for what he’d done to me, the offer was… tempting.
“Come on,” he said, “Do I have to beg you?”
He was sitting on the couch with a smile I’d never seen before, was it… shy? Embarrassed? I laid my hands on his shoulders and he shivered.
“Just… Don’t tie me up; I don’t like to be tied up.”
Tied up? “I don’t tie people up, Keller; who do you think I am?”
“How do I know which rules apply? I don’t even know you anymore. You tried to kill me, Chiquita.”
“You’re a vicious bitch!”
“You love it!”
He leaned forward and kissed my lips; the same intoxicating kiss that he’d given me thirteen years ago and I was lost just the same. I fucked him as if he was some virgin; careful not to hurt, stroking this muscled abandoned body for a long time until he was begging to be fucked some more and even then I took it slow. It was a strange feeling, he seemed so eager to let go, to hand everything over to me, including himself; I think I never cared less for my own pleasure than that night and I fell asleep holding him tight in my arms.
Two days later I let Keller take me to his room, kiss me, strip me –fuck me. When I felt the tip of his cock against my ass I froze; laid my hand against his chest, holding him back and he stopped, breathless.
“Wait, please…” I said.
He kept absolutely still. “We can do something else if you want to,” he said but I shook my head. I wanted this; just… “Give me a second.”
He leant forward, resting his forehead against my shoulder, shivering, whispering words of comfort in my ear, that he wouldn’t hurt me, that he loved me, didn’t want to lose me, he was sorry about what had happened to me 13 years ago; his voice was soft and deep, curling up around me like soft silky ribbons and I began to relax; withdrew my hand, nodded, arching my body as he entered me slowly, carefully, telling me how tight and hot and good I was, kissing me, sweat rolling down his face with the effort he was doing to stay in control, my thighs trembling around his waist, his hands on my dick, my moans dying in his mouth. Nothing kinky, nothing rough, none of the tricks he used in the past; just the sweet rolling of his hips against mine and the obsessive slow rhythm of his thrusts inside me.
It wasn’t just fucking. When I couldn’t stand it anymore I gripped his shoulders and came. Seconds later he did too, burying his face in the crook of my neck, biting the skin but not hard enough to mark me.
God that was perfect; we staid like that for a while, and eventually fell asleep, too tired to even shower, woke up sore and sticky and wet with sweat.
But even then I remained distrustful and wild. It took a whole year to go beyond wary cohabitation and just settle down. Since he’s not here anymore to read this I can confess it wasn’t his fault. I kept running away from him every time he came too close; except when I wanted to fuck. I was some contrary bitch; he was patient.
Someday though I woke up and discovered I felt home, loved and that I loved him. That was the moment when we had to part.
Now he’s gone; it’s been almost a year. The apartment’s mine and I resumed working after the FBI gave up harassing me; but even two weeks in prison under imaginary charges couldn’t make me confess what I didn’t know and they had to release me. I’m still stalked by their agents, sometimes I see an unknown car above my apartment; my phone’s tapped, probably they read my mail. Good luck to them because I never talk or write about Keller to anyone.
For a while I really thought I wouldn’t hear about him again.
But one day I met an old friend, Katherine McClain, a woman I knew in Harvard. We had dinner twice and ended in bed together. Another mistake, we both realized it fast enough. But she talked me into doing some pro-bono work in a prison named Oz and I agreed. I’ve been in prison, although not this one and I know what kind of abuses go on inside. I drive there once a week, try to help, sometimes it works, I’m a good lawyer.
The other day I was about to leave when a man met me at the door of the prison psychologist’s office.
“You’re Keller’s bitch,” he said, looking me up and down, his lips pursed in a contemptuous grin. Pale blue scary eyes, bald skull, impeccable clothes.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Listen; don’t fucking waste my time, prag… I know who you are. I’m Vernon Schillinger; I run the Aryan Brotherhood.”
Just the name made me shiver, reminding me of dreadful moments –the name had been mentioned several times that dreadful night. I just hoped he didn’t know I was the one who’d stolen the drugs.
“Tobias Beecher,” I said holding out my hand. He watched it with the same absolute disdain and handed me a brown anonymous envelope. No name on it, nothing.
“Take this and beat it. Tell your boyfriend he’d better find another postman. Remind him I don’t owe him anymore.”
I probably mumbled something and looked stupid; he gave me an icy smile and swatted my hips lightly. “Nice ass… Keller always had good taste.”
I opened the envelope in the car; there was a sheet of paper inside and Chris’ disjointed writing all over it; I think I read it a hundred times, just for the pleasure of hearing Chris’ voice in my head. When I was done my face was wet with tears.
After that I did what I had to. The hardest part was to convince my father that our practice should gain an international size; that we needed to open new offices in other countries, new ly developed countries that would show high profits. Maybe he was really convinced; maybe he was just happy to see me so enthusiastic. When he asked me which countries I was thinking of the answer came naturally.
“OK. Do it,” he said.
I could’ve yelled with joy.
I live in N. Sometimes I take a ferry to cross Guanabara bay and reach Rio where I work; the trip takes about 20 minutes and I quite like it; it’s better and quieter than driving in the traffic.
Two weeks ago I noticed a man sitting on a bench near the pier in the sweet morning light. I think I noticed him because he looked… different. Different from any man I’ve ever met or seen.
He had dark cropped hair, a strong nose but a yummy mouth softened the dark expression on his face and the hardness of his features. He was wearing a black linen suit, a white shirt, no tie and wonderful sport shoes that didn’t quite fit the suit, sunglasses. Those are details only a woman would notice. When he took off the glasses I saw his eyes. Oh boy, tell me about a devastating gaze! I would’ve smiled to him but he was on the phone, talking to someone and I can tell it was a lover; there was a smile on his lips that looked like a lover’s smile.
He was there again three days later and again last week and yesterday –different suit, different shirt but same cell phone. He was talking in English with an American accent but he didn’t look like a tourist. I thought maybe he lived here. I thought his lover was still in the United States and maybe he missed her. Lucky woman being missed by such a man!
Yesterday evening I saw him again; I was having diner with my mom in my favourite restaurant, Leiteria Brazil ; I love the place, I come here as often as I can, it’s so cosy and nice, and the waiters they’re just old-fashioned sweeties. At the table nearby I saw the man again; in front of him was another guy, pale skin, upturned boyish cheeky nose, an open look, as blond as my mysterious stranger was dark; they looked as different as day and night but they were smiling to each other the kind of goofy smile you can’t miss and that says “lovers” better than anything. I saw their fingers join and entangle under the table. I saw that the blond’s knees were trapped between his lover’s legs.
I certainly hadn’t thought my stranger’s lover would turn out to be a man but now it seemed just right, they looked so completely lost in each other, barely noticing what they were eating (which is a shame, I tell you) and so far away from the place, the people. One of the waiters winked at me and shrugged, rolling his eyes, making me smile.
They left before us. I walked out before my mom who was busy talking with the man who runs the place and as I was looking around at the beautiful starlit night I saw them again, hidden under a porch, kissing like crazy, feeding their lust on each other’s lips, their fingers clutching at each other’s shoulders and waist.
They parted just a second, breathless, and rested their foreheads together.
I wanted to be a mouse and hear the words they were whispering in each other’s ear… The taller one laughed and said “Ah, Chiquita, you’ll never change.”
“You like that, uh? Shameless bastard.”
“Yeah. It’s because I love you, you know. In spite of all.”
“Yeah. I love you too.”
It moved me.
I would’ve stood there longer just to watch them kiss; there was so much devouring passion in it, something so strong and rough and tender, something I’d never seen before…
"Anda logo, Adriana, teu pai detesta quando nós nos atrasamos!"*
I sighed and turned to join my mother.
I wonder if they’ll still be in town tomorrow; I wonder if it has anything to do with this big American lawyer’s chambers settling here. Maybe it’s a coincidence.
I guess I can find out.
*« hurry up, Adriana, your father hates it when we’re late » (hope I got the « your father » right.)
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