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Showing posts with label Short Stories. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Short Stories. Show all posts

"Break Glass if Broken"

I should have known better. I should have stayed home, remained alone. I should have known better.

Once you are an adult, every story begins in the middle. Mine is no different. The unpleasant details of what had come before do not need sharing, though they had brought me to New York where I could hide.

My job allowed me to disappear. A copy editor’s work is essential, yet never as important as that of the writer. This suited me.

In a gray, padded cubicle, reliable words and rules of usage occupied my monitor or filled the space on rectangular pages. Boxed in, I was invisible. Safe. Alone.

Weeknights, I rode the subway to a tiny square apartment with metal bars on the windows and sealed myself behind a door fitted with five deadbolts. I watched the world on television or read about it online. I ate my frozen meals from plastic or cardboard containers and owned no silverware or china, no knives to cut. No glass or china to break. I possessed nothing I did not consider disposable.

Weekends, I wandered museums where I could lose myself in the crowds. Walking beside handsome students, listening to docent lectures, I took notes as if I belonged in their cozy, boisterous groups. I fell into step beside family units, close enough to smell the baby-fresh scent of the shampoo mothers used on children’s hair. So close that, when the crowd swelled along with my need for contact, my hand could drift over a father’s fingers as he held his child’s hand upon an escalator or railing.

I reached for elevator buttons at the same time others did, on purpose, knowing my shrugged and smiled apology would be accepted. Knowing those I accosted would not suspect my longing for the touch of another’s hand on mine, however fleeting, or unwanted.

Listening to strangers’ conversations, I would pretend they spoke to me, composing witty replies no one ever heard.

“So, like, the thing about acting is that, like, you can be anyone, you know? Like, I could be a warrior princess, or like a vampire and shit. Clothes, makeup, and attitude are everything, you know? I took dance too, so my coach says I have a really good shot at getting a part real soon.”

“Does he say that when you’re sucking his dick, or after?” her friend replied, as I applauded, silently.

I could blame drama girl for what happened, but I would know it had been my idea, my fault. What if I acted, I had thought. What if instead of acting like one of these vapid young girls, or pretending to be a doctor on a television show, or a cat in a play, I acted as if I was normal? As if I was not damaged. As if I was not afraid.

Though at first, I comforted myself pretending I had carefully thought the scheme over for weeks, I actually began formulating plans even then, noting the shabby hooker-like clothing these girls sported, casting my gaze around with newfound interest in what others wore, how others acted.

Would I be a woman who wore crisp, black suits or one who wore dark-washed, pressed jeans? Did I wish to be no-nonsense in kick-ass leather boots, or flirty in sandals with sky-high heels? Was I the sort of woman who wore dresses with no panties, or one who never carried a purse? Would I be bright as sunshine, cool as spring rain or would I have a metallic tang, like a penny on the tongue?

“Excuse me?” I said, to a woman at my office soon after.

Only Botox, I suspected, kept her brow from furrowing at me for bothering her. “Yes? What?”

“I love that suit, and your shoes, and scarf and, well, just everything you have on.” My palms sweat.

It was the most I had said to anyone, anywhere, since suffering through the interview required to land my job. “Where do you shop?” I forged on, braver now that the words were out, though she stared at me as if I had lost my mind. Maybe I had.

“SoHo or the Lower East has the best boutiques for accessories. Fifth Avenue for serious clothes and shoes. I don’t remember where I bought everything, but the suit’s Ann Taylor.”

I watched her, and others like her, until I had a list. Until I knew just who I wanted to be.

Suit – gray, skirt just above the knee, slim fitted jacket, pants with no pleats, low on the hips, falling just so (tailoring a must for correct length with shoes)

Shoes – sling-back, heels (not too high or too short), leather, expensive, pointy

T-shirts – cut simply but made of really good cotton or silk, snug fitting, boat neck

Belt – wide or skinny (I still couldn’t figure that one out), expensive, metal clasp

Bag – red or another color, expensive

Simple, gold jewelry

Trench coat – black, good material, not too heavy

Scarves – the only patterns allowed. Nothing loud or flashy

Very sexy lingerie under it all (this I guessed), expensive

It was not easy or pleasurable, finding these items, but soon I had them all. I ate Top Ramen and hot dogs for a month, but now I owned something sharp. Heels.

At work, I continued to wear shapeless shift dresses and cardigans, pants that sagged at the knees and sensible flats. No one commented on the new blonde highlights in my hair, worn in my customary, messy bun; maybe no one noticed. Nor did anyone notice the injections that plumped my lips and smoothed my frown lines, or my skin, tinted self-tanner gold.

I remained invisible, or so I thought.

This was my first mistake, but mistakes are like lies; they always multiply. The first ones are easy and often go unnoticed.

“Hello, my name is Susan. Hello, my name is Frances. Hello, I’m Briana,” I practiced in front of my bathroom mirror. “Yes, I’d love a drink. No, I am waiting for someone. Why don’t you just fuck off? Fuck me.”

The more I practiced, the more I realized it was true; I could be anyone I wanted to be, anyone I wanted people to think I was.

“I’m a writer. I write erotica. I write romance novels. I am an editor, a doctor, a lawyer. I head up an investment firm in Paris. I live in Tribeca. I am from Milan, Japan, Italy, here on business. No, I don’t want to talk about it. I want you to fuck me.”

A woman who wants to get laid, and presents herself as someone without baggage, without strings attached, can find a man to do the deed just about anywhere.

I wasn’t stupid. I knew better than to go into singles bars or bad parts of town. I avoided places sure to attract the despondent, the alcoholic, motorcycle riders, or those with prison records, tattoos, or facial piercings. I was in the market for a very specific type of man. I needed a man too nice to come looking for me later, too nice to hurt me, too nice to say no. The sort of man who was clean and carried condoms with him.

The bar at The Ritz Carlton, near Wall Street, the Stock Exchange, and Battery Park was perfect. The restaurant made a nice cover. The setting meant I didn’t have to be from New York, yet many people who frequented the place lived in the up- and-coming neighborhood or were tourists themselves.

Drinking from a martini glass, I tipped the bartender generously. He knew, no matter what I ordered, to fill my glass with nothing more than water. A twist of lemon rind completed the illusion. All night, that first time, I sat and picked at a Blackberry, frowned at galley proofs, and fended off would-be suitors.

I tried all my stories, all my names, but told all the men (and a few women), “No,” until he walked in.

He was the Ken to my Barbie, the scratch to my itch. I knew it, and he knew it. Watching us, anyone would have thought we’d arranged to meet there, were husband and wife, lovers, friends. My knees parted slightly in welcome.

He slid into the spot I created for him as if he belonged. “Hello, pretty.”

“Hi, handsome,” I replied.

“Say you have a room.” He did not touch me with his hands, but his strong thighs eased my knees wider apart, and his eyes caressed the newly exposed expanse of my legs.

“I will, once you check in.”

“Perfect. I’ll be right back.” Before he left, he turned his shoulder to the room, slid his hand under my skirt, and cupped my cunt through soaked silk panties.

The bartender looked away.

My heart pounded. It was happening. He had touched me. I had been cool, calm, a woman of the world. I didn’t even know his name! He didn’t know mine. No stories had been required. We would fuck. I would leave. Perfect.

~****~

“You don’t have to do that, you know,” the friendly bartender said, many weeks later.

By now, I’d grown into my power, and my autonomy. I’d relaxed. My second mistake or maybe my third. I’m losing count.

Giving the bartender only the coolness of my gaze as a reply, I turned back to the room, and that’s when it happened. My make-believe world turned into a house of cards, and I knew I had made a terrible error.

“Vera,” my boss said, briskly, as if we had arranged to meet.

Alarm fluttered against my ribs, as violent as the wings of a dying bird trapped in a cage. “Mr. Blunt.”

Under his stern brows, steely blue eyes watched as I gathered my trappings of confidence and returned them to my bag. I chewed my bottom lip until his frown stopped me.

He tossed a large bill onto the bar top. Shame flooded my stomach until I realized it was meant for the bartender, not for what was to come. What I would do.

I followed him, swallowing my questions. What did it matter how he knew, how long he had known or why he’d come for me now? We both knew what I pretended to be was, at heart, no act. We both knew I wanted it.

In the elevator, he pushed me to my knees and let me nuzzle my cheek to his custom tailored, wool-suit-covered cock. Before my eyes closed, his wedding band winked at me.

Of course, no one else boarded the elevator, and the hallway was empty when we alighted.

“Crawl,” he said.

The carpet bit my nylon covered knees, and I felt the burn of scrapes as they formed. There would be blood. As there should be.

The spacious gold-and-green room behind the door he opened boasted a sweeping view of the water surrounding the Statue of Liberty. Harbor-view rooms came with their own telescopes. Handy for the voyeur and stargazer alike, I imaged the marketing copy boasting.

Though he did not pay me, I was his whore. Though he did not ask it of me, I gave him everything left of that girl in the bar. He kissed the tears I wept for her away and held my hands above my head as he grunted over me.

~****~

I should have known better, stayed home, and remained alone. I should have known better, and now, I do.

Every story should begin at the end; the unpleasant details of what came before do not need sharing. Mine had brought me to the mountains of Colorado, where I could hide.

Working from home, in an office with walls painted uncertain gray, reliable words and rules of usage occupy my monitor. Boxed in, I am invisible. Safe. Alone.

From Amaranthine Rain (a Short-Story Collection) 

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RIP, Richard Matheson

Zander Vyne fictionWriters from Anne Rice to Stephen King have said Richard Matheson inspired them to become writers, and he inspired me too. I discovered him when I was a kid, watching reruns of The Twlight Zone and hunting down a collection of his short stories after I realized the episodes I liked the best were all written by the same guy. Reading him, I learned to find strength in brevity, beauty in the ordinary and power in plain words. His work often featured ordinary people, facing extraordinary situations and scared me more than any horror I'd ever read (because Mr. Matheson made you see that the worst kind of horror is the one that lives down the street from you, the one your mother smiles at when you pass and who gives out full-sized candy bars at Halloween). Some of my favorites, and it's hard to pick just a few, include Button, Button a short story about choices, greed and tempation; The Nightstalker TV series, the speeches Rod Sterling gave at the beginning and end of The Twilight Zone, the movie Duel, and the Trilogy of Terror in the 70's (if you saw it, you remember it).  I hope he continues to inspire new generations of writers. We've lost a great man, but his work will ensure that his legacy never dies.



Mr. Matheson's short story The Likeness of Julie inspired my short story Souvenirs. Souvenirs will be included in the upcoming release of my new short story collection, but I'm sure the publisher won't mind sharing it with you in honor of Mr. Matheson. Thanks for the inspiration and RIP.

Readers, please note that this story is not for the faint of heart, or those who do not understand the difference between fiction and reality, and/or writers and their characters. This work is considered dark, literary erotica. If you are not a fan of horror, Richard Matheson, and dark erotica, please do not read this story. If you do read it, please take the time to comment.






The Quiet Car from La Petite Mort


Because I adore you, I'm sharing The Quiet Car a day early. It's a part of the Erotica Readers and Writers Association's Halloween collection, La Petite Mort, featuring wicked good tales sure to induce thrills along with chills.

READ THE QUIET CAR NOW ON ERWA
(Old link disabled. To read the story on my website, click HERE)

READ MY FAVORITE FROM LA PETITE MORT
Remittance Girl's Fixed in Amber (Old link disabled. To read the story on Remittance Girl's website, click HERE)


New Story - Break Glass if Broken

Break Glass if Broken is up on the November Story Gallery at ERWA's excellent website.  The Erotica Readers and Writers Association remains one of the best sources for quality erotica online, and it's free.  Updated monthly, the Gallery is always worth a visit and their treasury houses years of superb stories by many of the best writers around (including some of my stuff, written under other names).

I'm very pleased they asked to post this story about a very damaged woman trying to find a way to survive, and find a piece of happiness in her very lonely world.

Break Glass if Broken

I should have known better. I should have stayed home, remained alone. I should have known better.

Once you are an adult, every story begins in the middle. Mine is no different. The unpleasant details of what had come before do not need sharing, though they had brought me to New York where I could hide. My job allowed me to disappear. A copy editor's work is essential, yet never as important as that of the writer. This suited me.

In a gray, padded cubicle, reliable words and rules of usage occupied my monitor, or filled the space on rectangular pages. Boxed in, I was invisible. Safe. Alone.

Weeknights, I rode the subway to a tiny square apartment with metal bars on the windows, and sealed myself behind a door fitted with five deadbolts. I watched the world on television, or read about it online. I ate my frozen meals from plastic or cardboard containers and owned no silverware or china, no knives to cut. No glass or china to break. I possessed nothing I did not consider disposable.

Weekends, I wandered museums where I could lose myself in the crowds. Walking beside handsome students, listening to docent lectures, I took notes as if I belonged in their cozy, boisterous groups. I fell into step beside family units, close enough to smell the baby-fresh scent of the shampoo mothers used on children's hair. So close that, when the crowd swelled along with my need for contact, my hand could drift over a father's fingers as he held his child's hand upon an escalator or railing.

I reached for elevator buttons at the same time others did, on purpose, knowing my shrugged and smiled apology would be accepted. Knowing those I accosted would not suspect my longing for the touch of another's hand on mine, however fleeting or unwanted. Listening to strangers' conversations, I would pretend they spoke to me, composing witty replies no one ever heard.

Read more...

Smoke and Mirrors

When Christian, an American college student on summer break in New York City, meets Monique—a French-born coquette with a mermaid’s face and a siren’s allure—his life undergoes a gestalt-like shift, and he knows he will never be the same.

Through Christian’s intense, intimate flashbacks, Smoke And Mirrors paints a vivid, moving picture of obsession, first love, and sexual decadence.


Coming Soon - "Smoke and Mirrors"


I am excited to announce that my story, Smoke And Mirrors, will be available soon in E-Book format through Erotique Press.

When Christian, an American college student on summer break in New York City, meets Monique—a French-born coquette with a mermaid’s face and a siren’s allure—his life undergoes a gestalt-like shift, and he knows he will never be the same. Through Christian’s intense, intimate flashbacks, Smoke And Mirrors paints a vivid, moving picture of obsession, first love, and sexual decadence. 

I'll post release information as soon as I have it.  In the meantime, check out sizzling E-books by some of today's best erotica authors available at Erotique Press.

The Sex in The Library Challenge

For people who love books and reading, there’s just something sexy about bookstores and libraries.

When talented erotica writer and blogger Remittance Girl recently issued a challenge to write a story about an erotic library or bookstore experience for a mini-site she was putting together, I had to participate. 

Check out my story The Way of a Man With a Maid here (and don’t forget to leave comments) - The Sex in The Library Erotica Collection *Note - sadly, this collection has been removed, but you can still read the story in my short-story collection Amaranthine Rain. GET IT HERE