Tag Archives: human

Sonder

Chidinma Igweonu

It’s funny how time still passes when something horrible is happening. It’s even funnier how people continue living their lives oblivious to the fact that someone somewhere is going through a lot of pain. This has made me to wish that could pause sometimes. People should stop sometimes and really look because there is a lot to see.
It was a lazy afternoon. All afternoons were lazy these days. My mom and I were chatting in the veranda. She had just asked me if she was getting old. I had laughed silently because I knew it was a trap. If I said yes, she would tease me and if I said no, she would scold me for lying. I wondered why she had even asked me in the first place when she already knew the answer. I was indecisive. I was still thinking about what to say when I heard his scream. A high-pitched one that could have broken the glasses around if we were in Hollywood.

He was in the next compound, the compound that belongs to mechanics. I think his name was Ezekiel. He would always smile politely at me when I greeted but would say nothing for it seemed like he was a man of few words. His shirt was on FIRE! He was on FIRE! I watched as the bright orange flames leaped up his body like acrobats at their very best. I watched as they licked at his skin with insatiable hunger. People were screaming but Ezekiel was still the lead screamer. I was petrified. I think I was screaming too but I couldn’t hear my own voice. My throat was dry. My head felt heavy. My body was hot. People were pouring water on him till the fire died. In its wake were red angry burns to avenge its death

Time hadn’t stilled or frozen; not even for a second. I walked back aimlessly into my house. I saw my baby brother lying on the sofa. He had slept through it all. He wore a peaceful smile on his face. In that moment, I understood that that was just how life was. People went about their own lives wearing peaceful smiles on their faces unaware of what others were going through. This oblivion is inevitable and it doesn’t make us cruel. It makes us human.

A Critical Essay on Condomnairing by Chiedozie Ude.

Condoms, however basic and insignificant they may appear, are highly important when it comes to avoiding pregnancy and other sexual-related infections. Buying and using condoms may be quite tricky due to several factors. It is not uncommon for many a guy who wants to buy condoms to whisper silently to the seller because the buyer does not want other customers in the shop to view him with reproach. Well, if you are scared of buying condoms or you do not know how to properly wear one, this essay is for you.

Firstly, if you are underaged or if you are well known for decency, you might not want to buy condoms from a vendor that is in your area in order not to spoil your reputation. You never know, words may reach your parents or pastor. Now, that will make a juicy scandal. So, the solution to the fear or shame of buying condoms can be solved if you buy it from a place where you are not known. Better still, buy it from an aboki (trust me, these abokis sell everything sellable — that is, they are the true definition of a Jack of all trades) because an aboki will sell to you without asking questions. Do not ask me how I know this.

Having bought the condoms (I used the plural form because I do not think anyone will buy one, and rightly so.), the next issue will be how to keep them away from the wrong eyes. The wrong eyes include: younger siblings (Trust me, your younger ones cannot keep a secret to save their lives.); your parents (especially your mother); and your nosy elderly female neighbours who serve as CCTV for your mother etc. Rest assured that you are safe if you can avoid the set of people mentioned. Being caught by your parents, guardian or mentor is not ideal. Imagine how they will squeeze their faces, expressing their disgust in no uncertain terms, forgetting that they were once teenagers or youth who embarked on a plethora of erotic adventures. Trust me, African parents do not understand the concept of safe sex because total abstinence is their style. Therefore, do not be deceived by thinking they will understand why you keep condoms because they will never even try to understand; so, below are the ways to avoid being caught with the wonderful rubber:
1. Hide the goods in one of the hidden pockets of a standard wallet and never you let your wallet enter the hands of any of those classified as the wrong eyes.
2. Place the goods in an empty Milo container “pangolo” and bury it while facing the west. To be certain that you do it properly, do it while the sun is about to sink into its vest (Permit my floweriness, I mean sunset.). The essence of doing this is because burying a condom is a sacred festival that must be done with a mountain of sacredness.
3. Simply buy the condoms whenever you are about to use them. No need to keep incriminating evidence of your fornicating habit for your beloved and righteous parents to find.

No matter the precautions one may take, one may still be exposed. Little wonder the Pidgin English proverb states thus: “When breeze blow, fowl nyash go open.” Should you ever be caught with the contraband, here is a list of what you should do:
1. Admit to your parents that you are a “fuckaholic” so that they can conduct deliverance service for you. However, if your mother is a Yoruba woman who possesses the immanent or God-given ability to shape destinies with her resounding slaps, you may not apply this method. Do not say I did not warn you.
2. This rule is a tried and tested rule because it works every time. Whenever you are caught, just act casually by saying in an offhand manner that you attended a seminar on sex education and you were given condoms as souvenirs. After you say this, shake your head and say: “Silly me, I forgot to throw that shit out.” Then, you whistle loudly as you go out to discard the material. To appear more real — that is, to make them know it was an honest mistake — take out the trash can and empty it because doing this will remind your parents of how responsible you are. Applying this will save you from answering a lot of questions.

The previous paragraphs have dealt with the issues of buying and hiding condoms, and also the issue of escaping a scolding or a righteous sermon when you are caught with the goods-you-should-not-possess. Having learnt these, the next step will be to guide you on how to properly wear a condom. This stage is the most critical because if it is not done properly, you may end up becoming a father in the next nine months. As a student, you would not want that or would you? So, below are the things that should be done in order to ensure you are not violating the sacrosanct rules of condomnairing:
1. Do not wear the condom on your joystick the way you force your skinny jeans into your yam legs. Doing this may get it broken. Remember, you have to treat a condom with utmost respect and care — the kind of care you will give to a fragile baby.
2. Blow little air into it, place it on your Iroko tree and gently roll it towards your sack of coconuts (Pardon my use of euphemisms, my righteousness does not give room for sexual explicitness.).
3. Rule three is very important because it is where legends stand out. You may know how to wear a condom but are you a condomnairing legend? Read on to find out. Always leave a paragraph at the beginning of your Jack hammer when you put on a condom. This paragraph is important because it is going to store whatever you bring out during copulation. Remember, what separates the best from the rest is simply paragraphing.

In conclusion, you now know where you stand as a guy or where your boyfriends stand for the girls. Some of them are condomnairing legends while the rest need to up their game. Finally, it is believed that the unconventional methods suggested in this article will go a long way in ensuring that boys become legends.

PERFECT SEDUCTION: HOW I SEDUCE MY ENGLISH TEACHER.| GBAMLOG.COM

I Seduced My High School English Teacher, It Was Totally Worth It

“Blood, sex, and death.” Those were the three things Mr. Fitzpatrick taught us were part of every gothic horror novel. He was the high school english teacher I hopelessly crushed on, and I couldn’t help but notice that his eyes lingered on me when he said the second word. Sex.

I was a senior then, about to graduate. Glued to my seat even in the late, late spring when my classmates were terminally zoned out, focused on graduation, the summer ahead of them, college. But I still had unfinished business here, and today he was wearing a black tie over a light blue button-up and jeans that were just snug enough to drive my imagination wild. When he perched on the edge of his desk reading from The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, I let my eyes wander up and down his body, imaging a new use for each part.

He was the new cute teacher this year, the one the girls whispered about between classes. Mr. Fitzpatrick is looking good today.I’d tried to pretend I wasn’t one of them before, it’s not interesting to have the same crush as everyone else. But his charm was undeniable, who else could make the classics so sexy? Every day when he taught his inflection would bounce up and down with passion as he taught us about Bram Stoker and Shirley Jackson.

When he taught Dracula he became brooding and obsessive, delving into each character. Even in the clinical, fluorescent-lit classroom it was sexual. I spend the 50 minute class period imagining his lips — his teeth — on my neck, finding me in secret, lusting after my “life force” as Stoker says. The week he spent on, The Haunting of Hill House, was one of the most oddly erotic of my life. The text was thrilling, I was in a constant state of suspense and I held myself to not reading ahead, and being completely present in class when he talked about the role adrenaline plays in our bodies physiological state as we read. I didn’t ask, but I was sure my increased interest in him was one of those byproducts he was talking about.

When graduation was only a few weeks away, I felt bolder. Surely I should make a move, if the consequences of being rebuffed were so low? What could they do? I was almost gone. And so I became consumed with the idea of hooking up with Mr. Fitzpatrick.

At first, I thought I could be subtle. Mr. Fitzpatrick certainly noticed when I wore something low-cut or a little more form-fitting. Once I entered his classroom in a dress that particularly accentuated my curves and I could have sworn I heard him groan. But understandably, he never did anything more than cast a lingering glance my way.

He’d get in too much trouble, I reasoned. I’m going to have to be the one to do something. So I put my mind into creating the perfect plan: I’d just have to present him with an opportunity he couldn’t say no to.

The senior end-of-year dance was coming up, and I inserted myself into the planning committee long enough to serve as an official liaison and ask Mr. Fitzpatrick if he would be a chaperone, apparently we were in desperate need of one (I didn’t ask anyone else). A light flickered in his eyes as I carefully enunciated the word desperate. Hopefully that was a look of comprehending my agenda. He agreed to the task.

I bought new lingerie, black and red and lacy. I wore it under a loose-fitting white sundress, pure and virginal like a gothic heroine, but dark and carnal underneath.

At the dance, I added a note to the clipboard waiting for him as a chaperone. It was the regular list of rules to enforce and emergency contacts. My note was underneath, it was a line from Draculaalong with his room number:

“No man knows till he experiences it, what it is like to feel his own life-blood drawn away into the woman he loves.” CLC 345.

I never went to the dance. Instead I made my way through the dark and empty corridors of the school until I let myself into his classroom. I brought with me one candle to break up the darkness without relying on the fluorescents. Lighting it and setting it on a desk in the front row I climbed into Mr. Fitzpatrick’s seat behind his desk, pulled the straps of my dress down so the top of my lacy bra was revealed, and crossed my legs with my heels resting on the edge of his desk, waiting.

It was a long wait. He didn’t find my note right away, but it became pleasurably agonizing, every tiny sound I heard in the hallway seemed like it could be him approaching. I got excited and then mellowed again when I realized it was my imagination. When he did come, I didn’t even hear him approach.

“Adrienne.”

It was a guess he made as he entered the classroom, it was too dim to see my face but I had made sure the glow illuminated my nearly bare legs. I was glad he was expecting it to be me.

“Mr. Fitzpatrick.” I acknowledged him and removed my legs from his desk, slowly crossing them in front of me.

“This note… what are you doing here? We shouldn’t be here.”

He was saying the words, but even to someone who wasn’t engaging in wishful thinking they sounded unconvincing. He didn’t want them to be true. I stood up and leaned against the edge of his desk, facing him, opening my legs a bit so he could imagine himself between them.

“Mr. Fitzpatrick, I’m sorry if you’re misunderstanding. I just wanted to discussDracula more.”

He moved closer, grinning.

When he was close enough that I could touch him, I grabbed his tie and pulled his body into mine. I could feel he was already hard as he pressed against the loose fabric separating us. The situation excited him as much as it excited me. “You’ve always been my favorite student, Adrienne, but I could get in a lot of trouble for being here right now.”

Pulling harder on his tie, my mouth found his neck. “I’ll just have to make it worth your while then.”

He groaned and his hands found the undersides of my thighs, pulling me closer to him and moving us both back so I was resting on his desk. I slide back farther and wrapped my legs around him.

“I just wanted to experience this before graduation,” I told him, “I’ve been trying not to make a move all year.”

Even in the low light, I could see the smile that spread across his face. He says he loves the way I look lying on his desk. I respond by feeling the bulge in his pants, attempting to grip him through the fabric and feeling him grow.

“We need to make this quick. They’ll look for me if I don’t come back.”

“Perfect.” With the suspense building as long as it had, I wouldn’t last long in his arms anyway.

I heard him unbuckle his belt and unzip his pants but I didn’t look away from his face. Even in the dark he looked handsome, brooding. I wanted him to tell me more about sex and blood and death but I also just wanted to experience it with him — all the parts of being human, all the things worth writing about.

I was happy there, to be a willing participant in a fantasy I was sure he had. Happy when he slid the lace panties I’d brought for the occasion off, happy when he didn’t bother to remove my bra but instead pulled my breasts free from it, and especially happy when his body met mine.

While forging a path with his mouth from my neck, down to my collarbone, and then landing on my breasts he pulled me closer to him and entered me. The speed with which he poured himself into me belied his eagerness. I knew he wanted me as much as I wanted him to. As much as I’d fantasized about him wanting me.

Lowering himself so his face was next to mine he whispered, “Adrienne, if you want to be a great student you’re going to have to finish me off with your mouth.”

Kneeling before him I skipped the niceties and began blowing him full on right away, working my hand around his shaft in tandem with my mouth. His hands worked their way through my hair, separating it into two ponytails he held firmly as he used them to guide my head onto his cock, increasing in rhythm until I felt him tense up, his hands clenching my hair. Pulling my head down on him, he held me there and emptied himself into the back of my mouth. I could taste the saltiness as I removed myself from him, licking my lips.

It was the perfect end to my senior

year.

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I Seduced My High School English Teacher, It Was Totally Worth It | GBAMLOG

I WISH TO LOVE YOU LONGER | GBAMLOG 

I WISH TO LOVE YOU LONGER

*phone call *
Boy: Hey, hun!
Girl: Hey.
Boy: I missed you at school today. Why weren’t you there?
Girl: Yeah, I had to go to the doctor.
Boy: Oh really? Why?
Girl: Oh, nothing. Just some annual shots, that’s all.
Boy: Oh.
Girl: So what did you guys do in Math today?
Boy: You didn’t miss anything that great, just a lot of notes.
Girl: Okay, good.
Boy: Yeah.
Girl: Hey, I have a question to ask.
Boy: Okay, ask away.
Girl: How much do you love me?
Boy: You know I love you more than anything in this world.
Girl: Yeah.
Boy: Why did you ask?
Girl: *silence*
Boy: Is something wrong?
Girl: No. Nothing at all. Um. How much do you care about me?
Boy: I would give you the world in a heartbeat if I could.
Girl: You would?
Boy: Yeah of course I would. *sounding worried* Is there something wrong?
Girl: No, everything’s fine.
Boy: Are you sure?
Girl: Yeah
Boy: Okay. I hope so.
Girl: Would you die for me?
Boy: I would take a bullet for you any day, hun.
Girl: Really?
Boy: Any day. Now, seriously, is there something wrong?
Girl: No, I’m fine. You’re fine. We’re fine. Everyone and everything is fine.
Boy: Okay.
Girl: Well, I have to go. I’ll see you tomorrow at school.
Boy: Alright, bye. I love you!
Girl: Yeah. I love you too. Bye.
THE NEXT DAY AT SCHOOL
Boy: Hey, have you seen my girlfriend today?
Friend: No.
Boy: Oh.
Friend: She wasn’t here yesterday, either.
Boy: I know. She was acting all weird on the phone last night.
Friend: Well, dude, you know how girls are sometimes.
Boy: Yeah, but not her.
Friend: I don’t know what else to say, man.
Boy: Okay, well I gotta get to English. I’ll see ya after school.
Friend: Yeah I gotta get to Science. Later.
THAT NIGHT
Girl: Hello?
Boy: Hey.
Girl: Oh, hey.
Boy: Why weren’t you at school today?
Girl: Uh, I had another appointment with the doctor.
Boy: Are you sick?
Girl: Um, I have to go. My mom’s calling on the other line.
Boy: I’ll wait.
Girl: It may take a while. I’ll call you later.
Boy: Alright. I love you.
-very long pause-
Girl: *with a tears in her eyes* Look, I think we should break up.
Boy: What?!
Girl: It’s the best thing for us right now.
Boy: Why?
Girl: I love you.
THE GIRL DOESN’T COME TO SCHOOL FOR 3 MORE WEEKS AND DOESNT ANSWER HER PHONE
Boy: Hey dude.
Friend: Hey.
Boy: What’s up?
Friend: Nothing. Hey, have you talked to your ex lately?
Boy: No.
Friend: So you didn’t hear?
Boy: Hear what?
Friend: Um, I don’t know if I should be the one to tell you…
Boy: Dude, just tell me!
Friend: Uh. Call this number, 433-555-3468.
Boy: Okay, thanks!
BOY CALLS THE NUMBER AFTER SCHOOL
Voice: Hello, Suppam County Hospital. This is Nurse Victoria.
Boy: Uh, I must have the wrong number. I’m looking for my friend.
Voice: What is their name, sir?
*boy gives info*
Voice: Yes, this is the right number. She’s one of our patients here.
Boy: Really? Why? What happened? How is she?
Voice: Her room number is 646 in building A, suite 3.
Boy: WHAT HAPPENED?!
Voice: Please come by, sir, and you can see her. Goodbye.
Boy: WAIT! NO!
THE BOY GOES TO HOSPITAL, AND TO ROOM 646, BUILDING A, SUITE 3. THE GIRL IS LYING IN THE HOSPITAL BED.
Boy: Oh my God, are you okay?
Girl: *silence*
Boy: Dear, talk to me!
Girl: I..
Boy: You what?
Girl: I have cancer and I’m on life support.
Boy: *breaks into tears*
Girl: They’re taking me off tonight.
Boy: Why?
Girl: I wanted to tell you, but I couldn’t .
Boy: Why didn’t you tell me?
Girl: I didn’t want to hurt you.
Boy: You could never hurt me.
Girl: I just wanted to see if you felt about me the same as I felt about you.
Boy: Huh?
Girl: I love you more than anything. I would give you the world in a heartbeat. I would die for you and take a bullet for you.
Boy: *crying*
Girl: Don’t be sad. I love you and I’ll always be there with you.
Boy: Then why did you break up with me?
Nurse: Young man, visiting hours are over.
The boy leaves and later that night the girl is taken off of life support and dies, but what the boy didn’t know is that the girl only asked him those questions so she could hear him say it one last time. She only broke up with him because she knew she only had 3 more weeks left to live and thought that it would cause him less pain and give him time to get over her before she died.
NEXT DAY
The boy is found dead with a gun in one hand and a note in the other.
THE NOTE SAID:
“I told her that I would take a bullet for her, just like she said she would die for me.”

SECRET SHARED : ROMANCE WITH MY PILOT

By L.M Adeline

We made it down the short aisle. Standing in front of the cockpit door, she gave three quick knocks. A second later, a sandy-haired young man with thick glasses and a space between his front teeth poked his head out.

Oh dear

. I hated to admit that my shallow Southern heart sank, though I politely pulled my grin a little wider, reminding myself what the

C

in S.E.C.R.E.T. stood for. If my fantasy man wasn’t…

compelling

, I didn’t have to go through with the fantasy.

“Is this our lovely visitor?” he asked with a lisp.

Oh dear

.

“Yes,” the flight attendant said. “Miss Dauphine Mason, this is our multitalented First Officer Friar. Miss Mason is keen to see what goes on in here. It might help her with her fear of flying.”

“Ah, yes. Dispel the mystery and the fear disperses. That’s Captain Nathan’s specialty. He can show you around while I stretch my legs. Three’s a crowd in here! Good luck!”

After mangling all those S’s, First Officer Friar made a beeline to the back of the plane. Out the window in front was a dark sky; below, nothing but black water. The high whine of the engines masked the screams in my own head as my legs now turned to cement. Eileen nudged me through the narrow doorway.

“I’ll be back in a little while,” she said, looking at her watch. “Enjoy your flying lesson.” She shut the door behind her.

The pilot sat silhouetted in the window. The only thing I could see above the seat was the back of his head. He wasn’t wearing a jacket, only his white shirt, the muscles on his arms apparent beneath his sleeves as he flicked a number of switches from left to right on a panel in front of him. Thankfully, the white noise drowned out my pounding heart.

“Be with you in a moment, Dauphine. I just want to make sure autopilot’s running smoothly. A robot takes over for most of the flight from now on. A very smart one.” There it was. That accent again. The man from Security! The man with the sexy British accent! The air left my chest and the pressure squeezed my lungs. Feeling tantalized and terrified at that same time had a bad effect on my stomach. I slapped both hands on the curved walls of the cockpit to steady myself as the plane rose and straightened. The pilot faced a wall of lights and levers that seemed to blink and shift on their own. Then he finally turned his chair around, aviators off, brown eyes on me. I gasped. “Don’t worry, we’re on automatic, but we’re not going to be alone in here for long, so I apologize ahead of time for the furtive nature of our interlude,” he said, loosening the top button of his uniform. “But I need to know, before we continue with our tutorial on the safety of flight: Do you accept the Step, Miss Mason?”

I couldn’t believe this was happening. “Here? Now?”

“Yes. Here and now. Trust me when I say I can help you with your fear of flying. And a few other things too, I suspect,” he said, leaning back into the plush leather of his pilot seat, taking me in from bottom to top.

“I’ve never been in an airplane before,” I muttered, stalling.

“I understand that,” he said, steepling his fingers. “But you are doing a fine job of your first time.”

Standing four feet from a complicated instrument panel that the pilot was

no longer

facing, I watched dark clouds whip by the nose of the plane through the high, narrow windows.

“Are we…safe in here?”

“Very safe,” he said. “Safer than driving. Safer than almost any other activity you can do at hundreds of miles an hour, high in the air.”

“What if there’s turbulence?” I asked, just as we hit a little bump. I yelped. My arms flew up to grasp the ceiling.

He took it as a cue to gesture me over to him.

Here we go

! I slowly, carefully, closed the gap between us, and over his shoulder got a better view of the world before me. It was dusk, but light poked through the clouds, illuminating little towns and villages nestled in the foot of a mountain range. They looked like a strand of jewels dropped from a great height. It was beautiful, but still I felt gut- punched and queasy. Levers and buttons continued to move in a ghostly way all around us.

“Turbulence is just air pockets. The plane will ride through it. And I’m right here if anything goes awry.”

I stood above him now, his head level with my breasts. “Do you accept the Step?” Handsome face, kind eyes, great smell, manly hands, but the clincher truly was his beautifully tailored shirt. Terribly shallow, I know.

“Yes, I accept.”

“Then may I help you off with your knickers?”

I almost laughed out loud at the old-fashioned British word for panties. I was wearing a pencil skirt and pumps, and a button-up pink angora sweater. The low ponytail completed my ’50s-housewife-on-an-errand look. It couldn’t be helped; planning my outfits always calmed me, and today I needed to be calm.

“Tell me more about how safe I am,” I begged, as his warm hands gently undid the back of my skirt, letting it drop to the floor.

“Well, Dauphine,” he said, inching my panties, or “knickers,” down, “takeoff is the hardest part. So much can go wrong. But we’re well past that now.”

Standing before him, I closed my eyes. I could feel his fingers unbuttoning my sweater, easing it off my shoulders.

Ohh

.

“Now the middle part of flight,” he said, leaning forward to nuzzle my soft line of pubic hair, kissing it. “That’s the easiest…sweetest part of the ride. But still, you never want to get complacent. Sometimes it’s deceptively easy. You still need to be careful, to watch for subtle signals.”

I stood over him, my legs trembling. He reached back to undo my pink satin bra, slid it forward, and dropped it. Standing there naked, for a second

I forgot the plane was flying on its own

! It was black through the window. I wasn’t sure if we were flying over mountains or water, but I closed my eyes. If I couldn’t see it, it didn’t matter. I placed my hands on the ceiling again, pressing my body forward into him. He was so at ease, so in command as he gently urged my legs farther apart, reaching up to pinch and circle my nipples, like I was an instrument panel he knew exactly how to operate.

“How does the autopilot know what it’s doing?” I asked, so deeply aroused by his thumbs now expertly parting my cleft, I thought my knees would give.

“It listens to me. I tell it what to do and it follows my instructions,” he said, leaning forward to kiss my clitoris, now centered between his thumbs.

“Mmm, you taste so good, my darling,” he murmured, his fingers now joining his mouth, slowly gliding in and out, agonizing me. I felt every knuckle against my most tender parts, prodding my clitoris forward, as his mouth fully encircled me. I grabbed his head as it moved beneath me. Then I felt that rush, fast and hot, and the mounting energy as his urgent tongue fluttered and flicked, his fingers darting in and out. All I could do was shut my eyes and arch back, dying and shuddering as I exploded with a new kind of pleasure, moaning into the ceiling, his tongue lapping relentlessly at me, my hand over my mouth to muffle my cries.

TALES OF OUR FIRST ANNIVERSARY 

By KrisEdu

When we put the top of our wedding cake in the freezer (to be enjoyed at our first anniversary) we had a vague idea of what married life would be like. We had no idea that our first anniversary would see me with serious health concerns, pregnant, and my husband without a job. The celebration of that day made us truly appreciate each other and our marriage.

Because of our strict budget, I had planned to spend our anniversary at home. I was going to surprise my husband with a romantic dinner and then we would going to watch our wedding video while we ate the top of our wedding cake. Determined to find the perfect gift, I hopped on to eBay to see what I could find. I quickly discovered that the traditional first anniversary gift is paper, and as it happened, Metallica (both mine and my husband’s favorite rock band) was going to be playing two days after our anniversary in a city nearby. I jumped into bidding for the tickets with extra money from a side bartending job in hand. The bidding stopped about $20 short of my budget. I had found my “paper” gift – Metallica tickets. It looked like my plans were going to come off perfectly…boy, was I wrong!

I was disappointed when I took the cake out of the freezer only to find it had mold spots growing on it (I didn’t know we were supposed to wrap it in plastic wrap AND put it in a Tupperware container!). I began to get anxious when we couldn’t find our wedding videos anywhere. I really started panicking when the paper coupon book I had made to go with the tickets got destroyed by the dog. When I found out I had to have a rather major medical procedure the day after our anniversary and wouldn’t be able to attend the concert with my husband, I began to suspect a conspiracy.

I took the spare $20 and a picture of our wedding cake to a talented friend of mine, and she agreed to recreate the top for me. The evening of our anniversary, everything went off without a hitch. The romantic, candlelit dinner was superb. The wedding cake top was so perfect, my husband didn’t even suspect that it wasn’t the original. I had even managed to track down our wedding video, and my Mom sent it to me with 2 days to spare. When the time for gift giving came, I pulled out my envelope and handed it to my husband. When he opened the card and the tickets fell out, the look on his face was worth all the effort I had gone through. I explained that I had gotten the tickets before my medical procedure was planned so I couldn’t go. I told him I had spoken with his best friend who had agreed to take him.

His mouth just hung open – gaping like a fish. I began to worry that maybe he didn’t like the gift as much as I had thought. After what seemed like an interminable period of silence I finally asked, “Don’t you want to go?” He suddenly looked at me and grinned. He handed me my present saying, “I guess all the struggles this year have brought us closer than we thought … We really do know each other well.” Curious, I opened the envelope he had handed me. When I opened the card, two tickets fell out. With some extra money he had scrounged up, he bought me tickets to see Metallica as well. Because of his procrastination, he had waited to get the tickets until after my medical procedure had been planned. His tickets were a week away near where we had family we could stay with.

When people ask me the most romantic thing my husband has ever done, I usually shock them by saying something about a Metallica concert. Until I relate the whole story, they don’t understand that our first anniversary truly demonstrated the love we had for one another.

REALITY: THE MOST TERRIFYING NIGHT OF MY LIFE

On August 3, 2000 one of my friends from high asked me to ride along with him to meet a girl who he found online. I’m always up for an adventure, so I agreed. I knew that it was quite a drive, about 10 hours, but I didn’t mind at all. We left in the evening and drove all night, got there in the morning, and left that evening. Neither one of us slept a wink. On the way back we were about 15 miles west of a small town when I was asleep. He was going well over the speed limit when he decided to pull over to switch driving. Right when we got onto the shoulder we went over the top of a small hill which was blocking sight to the road ahead. Right when we got over the top of the hill he saw a truck parked on the shoulder. He tried to get back on the interstate, but there was a semi there, so he instinctively jerked the wheel to get off of the road. We hit the end of the guardrail, that was when I woke up, took out 70 feet of it, and rolled onto the top. I looked at him and said “dude, that was f****** awesome,” we both laughed hysterically for a few minutes and unbuckled and fell on our heads. I found one shoe and the flashlight. I had to kick a window out to get out. I had no idea that the truck was there before us, so I started looking for the driver. When I looked into the driver’s window, I saw that the keys were still in the ignition. I knew that he was definitely somewhere around, so I kept looking. When I looked around the front of the truck I saw a blue rope that was tied around the tow hook and went over the top of a short wall. I assumed that he hit us and knocked something off of his truck and climbed down the rope to get it. When I looked over the wall, I got the shock of a lifetime. There was a dead body at the end of the rope, looking up at me. He looked like a demon. I’m not a person to freakout, but I definitely did. I jumped backwards into traffic. I almost got hit by a passing semi. He swerved around me, pulled over, jumped out, and asked me “what the f*** are you doing?” I was still in a panic and said “there’s a dead guy over there.” He said “f*** this, I’m out of here.” Then he jumped in his truck and left. We looked at each other and said, that sucks. He called 911 and told them that we needed help, then called his parents and told them where we were and that we needed help. Then I called my mom and said, mom were ok. Then the phone dropped the call and wouldn’t call back. We were really out in the middle of nowhere. We sat there for an hour and a half waiting for the cops when a security guard pulled up, got out, and very calmly asked if we were ok. I assumed that she knew what happened, so I said he’s over there and pointed to the front of the truck. She looked over the wall and had a bigger panic attack than I did. She ran back to her car, grabbed the radio, and yelled, “we need everyone out here now!” Fifteen minutes later when the first cop showed up he looked around and said “you guys are under arrest.” I was shocked and said “woah woah woah, wake up dumbass, if we would have killed him then why would his truck be upside down over there and these tire marks show that he intentionally jerked the truck off of the road to miss hitting that truck?” He thought for a second and said “huh, you make a good point, you guys are ok.” They flipped the truck back over and cut the guy down. Then he asked if we were ready to go. I said that we had to stay there because he told his parents that we were going to be there waiting for them. He said “ok, have it your way.” Then everyone left. I had nightmares about it for years.

Storystar, where short story writers are the stars!
https://www.storystar.com/story/12389/brandon/true-life/survival-success-2

Horror Classics : HOW TO GET BACK TO THE FOREST 

How to Get Back to the Forest

“You have to puke it up,” said Cee. “You have to get down there and puke it up. I mean down past where you can feel it, you know?”

She gestured earnestly at her chest. She had this old-fashioned cotton nightgown on, lace collar brilliant under the bathroom lights. Above the collar, her skin looked gray. Cee had bones like a bird. She was so beautiful. She was completely beautiful and fucked. I mean everybody at camp was sort of a mess, we were even supposed to be that way, at a difficult stage, but Cee took it to another level. Herding us into the bathroom at night and asking us to puke. “It’s right here,” she said, tapping the nightgown over her hollow chest. “Where you’ve got less nerves in your esophagus. It’s like wired into the side, into the muscle. You have to puke really hard to get it.”

“Did you ever get it out?” asked Max. She was sitting on one of the sinks. She’d believe anything.

Cee nodded, solemn as a counselor. “Two years ago. They caught me and gave me a new one. But it was beautiful while it was gone. I’m telling you it was the best.”

“Like how?” I said.

Cee stretched out her arms. “Like bliss. Like everything. Everything all at once. You’re raw, just a big raw nerve.”

“That doesn’t sound so great,” said Elle.

“I know,” said Cee, not annoyed but really agreeing, turning things around. That was one of her talents.

“It sounds stupid,” she nodded, “but that’s because it’s something we can’t imagine. We don’t have the tools. Our bodies don’t know how to calculate what we’re missing. You can’t know till you get there. And at the same time, it’s where you came from. It’s where you started.

She raised her toothbrush. “So. Who’s with me?”

• • •

Definitely not me. God, Cee. You were such an idiot.

• • •

Apparently, a girl named Puss had told her about the bug. And Cee, being Cee, was totally open to learning new things from a person who called herself Puss. Puss had puked out her own bug and was living on the streets. I guess she’d run away from camp, I don’t really know. She was six feet tall, Cee said, with long red hair. The hair was dyed, which was weird, because if you’re living on the streets, do you care about stuff like that? This kind of thing can keep me awake at night. I lie in bed, or rather I sit in the living room because Pete hates me tossing and turning, and I leave the room dark and open all the curtains, and I watch the lights of the city and think about this girl Puss getting red hair dye at the grocery store and doing her hair in the bathroom at the train station. Did she put newspapers down? And what if somebody came in and saw her?

Anyway, eventually Cee met Puss in the park, and Puss was clearly down-and-out and a hooker, but she looked cool and friendly, and Cee sat down beside her on the swings.

• • •

“You have to puke it up.”

• • •

We’d only been at camp for about six weeks. It seemed like a long time, long enough to know everybody. Everything felt stretched out at camp, the days and the nights, and yet in the end it was over so fast, as soon as you could blink. Camp was on its own calendar—a special time of life.That was Jodi’s phrase. She was our favorite counselor. She was greasy and enthusiastic, with a skinny little ponytail, only a year or two older than the seniors.Camp is so special! The thing with Jodi was, she believed every word she said. It made it really hard to make fun of her. That night, the night in the bathroom, she was asleep down the hall underneath her Mother Figure, which was a little stuffed dog withFlorida on its chest.

• • •

“Come on!” said Cee. And she stuck her toothbrush down her throat, just like that. I think Max screamed. Cee didn’t start puking right away. She had to give herself a few really good shoves with that toothbrush, while people said “Oh my God” and backed away and clutched one another and stared. Somebody said “Are you nuts?” Somebody else said something else, I might have said something, I don’t know, everything was so white and bright in that moment, mirrors and fluorescent lights and Cee in that goddamn Victorian nightgown jabbing away with her toothbrush and sort of gagging. Every time I looked up I could see all of us in the mirror. And then it came. A splatter of puke all over the sink. Cee leaned over and braced herself. Blam. Elle said, “Oh my God, that is disgusting.” Cee gasped. She was just getting started.

• • •

Elle was next. All of a sudden she spun around with her hands over her mouth and let go in the sink right next to Cee. Splat. I started laughing, but I already felt sort of dizzy and sick myself, and also scared, because I didn’t want to throw up. Cee looked up from her own sink and nodded at Elle, encouraging her. She looked completely bizarre, her wide cheekbones, her big crown of natural hair, sort of a retro supermodel with a glistening mouth, her eyes full of excitement. I think she even said “Good job, Elle!”

Then she went to it with the toothbrush again. “We have to stop her!” said Katie, taking charge. “Max, go get Jodi!” But Max didn’t make it. She jumped down from the third sink, but when she got halfway to the door she turned around and ran back to the sink and puked. Meanwhile Katie was dragging Cee away from the sink and trying to get the toothbrush, but also not wanting to touch it, and she kept going “Ew ew ew” and “Help me, you guys,” and it was all so hilarious I sank down on the floor, absolutely crying with laughter. Five or six other girls, too. We just sort of looked at each other and screamed. It was mayhem. Katie dragged Cee into one of the stalls, I don’t know why. Then Katie started groaning and let go of Cee and staggered into the stall beside her, and sploosh, there she went.

• • •

Bugs.

It’s such a camp rumor. Camp is full of stories like that. People say the ice cream makes you sterile, the bathrooms are full of hidden cameras, there’s fanged, flesh-eating kids in the lake, if you break into the office you can call your parents. Lots of kids break into the office. It’s the most common camp offense. I never tried it, because I’m not stupid—of course you can’t call your parents. How would you even get their number? And bugs—the idea of a bug planted under your skin, to track you or feed you drugs—that’s another dumb story.

Except it’s not, because I saw one.

The smell in the bathroom was terrible now—an animal smell, hot; it thrashed around and it had fur.

I knew I was going to be sick. I crawled to the closest place—the stall where Cee knelt—and grabbed hold of the toilet seat. Cee moved aside for me. Would you believe she was still hanging onto her toothbrush? I think we both threw up a couple of times. Then she made this awful sound, beyond anything, her whole body taut and straining, and something flew into the toilet with a splash.

I looked at her and there was blood all over her chin. I said, “Jesus, Cee.” I thought she was dying. She sat there coughing and shaking, her eyes full of tears and triumph. She was on top of the world. “Look!” she breathed. And I looked, and there in the bowl, half-hidden by puke and blood, lay an object made of metal.

It actually looked like a bug. Sharp blood-smeared legs.

“Shit!” I said. I flushed the toilet.

“Now you,” said Cee, wiping her mouth on the back of her wrist.

“I can’t.”

“Tisha. Come on.”

Cee, I couldn’t, I really couldn’t. I could be sick—in fact I felt sicker than ever—but I couldn’t do it that hard. I remember the look in your eyes; you were so disappointed. You leaned and spat some blood into the toilet.

I whispered: “Don’t tell anyone. Not even the other girls.”

“Why not? We should all—”

No. Just trust me.”

I was already scared, so scared. I couldn’t bear the idea of camp without you.

• • •

We barely slept that night. We had to take showers and clean the bathroom. Max cried the whole time, but for at least part of the night, I was laughing. Me and Katie flinging disinfectant powder everywhere. Katie was cool, always in sweatpants, didn’t give a shit about anything.

“You know your friend is a headcase, right?” she said.

It was the first time anybody’d called Cee my friend. We got out the mop and lathered up the floor. Everyone slipped and swore at us, coming out of the showers. Cee went skidding by in a towel. “Whee!” she shrieked.

• • •

You cannot feel your bug. I’ve pressed so hard on my chest. I know.

I could feel it,” said Cee. “After they put it back in.” It wasn’t exactly a physical thing. She couldn’t trace the shape of the bug inside her, but she could feel it working.

“Bug juice,” she said, making a sour face. She could feel bug juice seeping into her body. Every time she was going to be angry or afraid, there’d be this warmth in her chest, a feeling of calm spreading deep inside.

“I only noticed it after I’d had the bug out for a couple of weeks.”

“How did your parents know you needed a new one?”

“I didn’t need one.”

“How did they know it was gone?”

“Well, I kind of had this fit. I got mad at them and started throwing food.”

We were sitting on my bed, under my Mother Figure, a lamp with a blue shade. The blue light brought out the stains on Cee’s Victorian nightgown. We were both painting our toenails Cherry Pink, balancing the polish on my Life Skills textbook, taking turns with the brush.

“You should do it,” Cee said. “I feel better. I’m so much better.”

I thought how in a minute we’d have to study for our Life Skills quiz. I didn’t think there was bug juice in my body. I couldn’t feel anything.

“I’m so much better,” Cee said again. Her hand was shaking.

• • •

Oh, Cee.

• • •

The weird thing is, I started writing this after Max came to visit me, and I thought I was going to write about Max. But then I started writing in your book. Why? This book you left me, your Mother Figure. You practically threw it at me: “Take it!” It was the worst thing you could do, to take somebody else’s Parent Figure, especially the mom. Or maybe it was only us girls who cared so much about the moms. Maybe for the boys it was the dads. But anyway, taking one was the worst; you could basically expect the other kids to kill you. A kid got put in the hospital that way at a different camp—the one on the east side—but we all knew about it at our camp. They strung him up with electric wires. Whenever we told the story we ended by saying what we would have done to that kid, and it was always much worse.

But you threw this book at me, Cee, and what could I do? Jodi and Duncan were trying to grab your arms, and the ambulance was waiting for you downstairs. I caught the book clumsily, crumpling it. I looked at it later, and it was about half full of your writing. I think they’re poems.

dank smells underground want to get back

no pill for it

i need you

I don’t know, are they poems? If they are, I don’t think they’re very good. A nap could be a door an abandoned car. Does that even mean anything? Eat my teeth. I know them all by heart.

I picked up this book when Max left. I wrote: “You have to puke it up.” All of a sudden I was writing about you. Surprising myself. I just kept going. Remembering camp, the weird sort of humid excitement there, the cafeteria louder than the sea. The shops—remember the shops? Lulu’s was the best. We’d save up our allowance to go there. Down in the basement you could get used stuff for cheap. You got your leather jacket there. I got these red shoes with flowers on the toes. I loved those shoes so much! I wonder where they went? I wore them to every mixer, I was wearing them when I met Pete, probably with my white dress—another Lulu’s purchase I don’t have now.

It was summer, and the mixer had an island theme. The counselors had constructed this sort of deck overlooking the lake. God, they were so proud of it. They gave us green drinks with little umbrellas in them and played lazy, sighing music, and everyone danced, and Pete saw a shooting star, and we were holding hands, and you were gone forever and I forgot you.

• • •

I forgot you. Forgetting isn’t so wrong. It’s a Life Skill.

• • •

I don’t remember what my parents looked like. A Parent Figure cannot be a photograph. It has to be a more neutral object. It’s supposed to stand in for someone, but not too much. When we got to camp we were all supposed to bring our Parent Figures to dinner the first night. Everyone squeezed in at the cafeteria tables, trying to find space beside their dinner trays for their Figures, those calendars and catcher’s mitts and scarves. I felt so stupid because my Mother Figure was a lamp and there was no place to plug it in. My Father Figure is a plaque that saysAlways be yourself.

Jodi came by, as the counselors were all going around “meeting the Parents,” and she said, “Wow, Tisha, that’s a good one.”

• • •

I don’t even know if I picked it out.

• • •

“We want you to have a fabulous time at camp!” Jodi cried. She was standing at the front with the other counselors: Paige and Veronica and Duncan—who we’d later call “Hunky Duncan”—and Eric and Carla and the others.

Of course they’d chosen Jodi to speak. Jodi was so perky.

She told us that we were beginning a special relationship with our Parent Figures. It was very important not to fixate.We shouldn’t fixate on the Parent Figures, and we definitely shouldn’t fixate on the counselors.

My stupid lamp. It was so fucking blue. Why would you bring something blue? “The most important people in your life are the other campers!” Jodi burbled. “These are the people you’ll know for the rest of your life! Now, I want you to turn to the person next to you and say, Hi, Neighbor!

• • •

Hi, Neighbor! And later, in the forest, Cee sang to the sky: Fuck you, Neighbor!

• • •

Camp was special. We were told that it was special. At camp you connected with people and with nature. There was no personal tech. That freaked a lot of people out at first. We were told that later we’d all be able to get online again, but we’d be adults, and our relationships would be in place, and we would have learned our Life Skills, and we’d be ready. But now was special: Now was the time of friends and of the earth.

Cee raised her hand: “What about earthquakes?”

“What?” said Veronica, who taught The Natural World. Veronica was from an older group of counselors; she had gray hair and leathery skin from taking kids on nature hikes and she was always stretching to show that you could be flexible when you were old.

“What about earthquakes?” Cee asked. “What about fires? Those are natural. What about hurricanes?”

Veronica smiled at us with her awesome white teeth, because you could have awesome white teeth when you were old, it was all a matter of taking care of yourself with the right Life Skills.

“What an interesting question, Celia!”

We were told that all of our questions were interesting. There’s no such thing as a stupid question! The important thing was always toparticipate. We were told to participate in classes and hikes and shopping sprees and mixers. In History we learned that there used to be prejudice, but now there wasn’t: It didn’t matter where you came from or who you loved, just join in! That’s why even the queer girls had to go to the mixers; you could take your girlfriend, but you had to go. Katie used to go in a tie and Elle would wear flowers. They rolled their eyes but they went anyway and danced and it was fun. Camp was so fun.

Cee raised her hand: “Why is it a compliment to tell somebody it doesn’t matter who they are?”

We were told to find a hobby. There were a million choices and we tried them all: sports and crafts and art and music. There was so much to do. Every day there was some kind of program and then there were chores and then we had to study for class. No wonder we forgot stuff. We were told that forgetting was natural. Forgetting helped us survive, Jodi told us in Life Skills class, tears in her eyes. She cried as easily as Max. She was more like a kid sister than a counselor. Everybody wanted Jodi to be okay. “You’ll always be reminded,” she said in her hoarse, heroic voice. “You’ll always have your Parent Figures. It’s okay to be sad! But remember, you have each other now. It’s the most special bond in the world.”

Cee raised her hand: “What if we don’t want us?”

Cee raised her hand, but of course she raised her hand. She was Cee. She was Cee, she’d always been Cee, do you see what I mean? I mean she was like that right from the day we arrived; she was brash, messy Cee before the night in the bathroom, before she supposedly puked out her bug. I couldn’t see any difference. I could not see any difference. So of course I had second thoughts. I wished so bad I hadn’t flushed the toilet. What if there wasn’t anything in it? What if somebody’d dropped a piece of jewelry in there, some necklace or brooch and I thought it was a bug? That could have happened. Camp was so fun. Shaving my legs for the mixer. Wearing red shoes. We were all so lucky. Camp was the best thing ever. Every Child at Camp! That was the government slogan: ECAC. Cee used to make this gag face whenever she said it.ECAC. Ick. Sick.

• • •

She took me into the forest. It was a mixer. Everybody else was crowded around the picnic tables. The lake was flat and scummy and the sun was just going down, clouds of biting insects golden in the haze.

“Come on,” Cee said, “let’s get out of here.”

We walked over the sodden sand into the weeds. A couple of the counselors watched us go: I saw Hunky Duncan look at us with his binoculars, but because we were just two girls they didn’t care. It only mattered if you left the mixer with a boy. Then you had to stop at the Self-Care Stand for condoms and an injection, because becoming a parent is a serious decision! Duncan lowered his binoculars, and we stepped across the rocks and into the trees.

“This is cool!” Cee whispered.

I didn’t really think it was cool—it was weird and sticky in there, and sort of dark, and the weeds kept tickling my legs—but I went farther because of Cee. It’s hard to explain this thing she had: She was like an event just about to happen and you didn’t want to miss it. I didn’t want to, anyway. It was so dark we had to hold hands after a while. Cee walked in front of me, pushing branches out of the way, making loud crackling sounds, sometimes kicking to break through the bushes. Her laugh sounded close, like we were trapped in the basement at Lulu’s. That’s what it was like, like being trapped in this amazing place where everything was magically half-price. I was so excited and then horrified because suddenly I had to take a dump, there was no way I could hold it in.

“Wait a sec,” I told Cee, too embarrassed to even tell her to go away. I crouched down and went and wiped myself on the leaves, and I’m sure Cee knew what was up but she took my hand again right after I was done. She took my disgusting hand. I felt like I wanted to die, and at the same time, I was floating. We kept going until we stumbled into a clearing in the woods. Stars above us in a perfect circle.

Woo-hooooo!” Cee hollered. “Fuck you, Neighbor!”

She gave the stars the finger. The silhouette of her hand stood out against the bright. I gave the stars the finger, too. I was this shitty, disgusting kid with a lamp and a plaque for parents but I was there with Cee and the time was exactly now. It was like there was a beautiful starry place we’d never get into— didn’t deserve to get into—but at the same time we were better than any brightness. Two sick girls underneath the stars.

Fuck you, Neighbor! It felt so great. If I could go anywhere I’d want to go there.

• • •

The counselors came for us after a while. A circle of them with big flashlights, talking in handsets. Jodi told us they’d been looking everywhere for us. “We were pretty worried about you girls!”

For the first time I didn’t feel sorry for her; I felt like I wanted to kick her in the shins. Shit, I forgot about that until right now. I forget so much. I’m like a sieve. Sometimes I tell Pete I think I’m going senile. Like premature senile dementia. Last month I suggested we go to Clearview for our next vacation and he said, “Tish, you hate Clearview, don’t you remember?”

It’s true, I hated Clearview: The beach was okay, but at night there was nothing to do but drink. So we’re going to go to the Palace Suites instead. At least you can gamble there.

Cee, I wonder about you still, so much—I wonder what happened to you and where you are. I wonder if you’ve ever tried to find me. It wouldn’t be hard. If you linked to the register you’d know our graduating class ended up in Food Services. I’m in charge of inventory for a chain of grocery stores, Pete drives delivery, Katie stocks the shelves. The year before us, the graduates of our camp went into the army; the year after us they also went into the army; the year after that they went into communications technologies; the year after that I stopped paying attention. I stopped wondering what life would have been like if I’d graduated in a different year. We’re okay. Me and Pete—we make it work, you know? He’s sad because I don’t want to have kids, but he hasn’t brought it up for a couple of years. We do the usual stuff, hobbies and vacations. Work. Pete’s into gardening. Once a week we have dinner with some of the gang. We keep our Parent Figures on the hall table, like everyone else. Sometimes I think about how if you’d graduated with us, you’d be doing some kind of job in Food Services too. That’s weird, right?

• • •

But you didn’t graduate with us. I guess you never graduated at all.

• • •

I’ve looked for you on the buses and in the streets. Wondering if I’d suddenly see you. God, I’d jump off the bus so quick, I wouldn’t even wait for it to stop moving. I wouldn’t care if I fell in the gutter. I remember your tense face, your nervous look, when you found out that we were going to have a check-up.

“I can’t have a check-up,” you said.

“Why not?” I asked.

“Because,” you said, “because they’ll see my bug is gone.”

And I just—I don’t know. I felt sort of embarrassed for you. I’d convinced myself the whole bug thing was a mistake, a hallucination. I looked down at my book, and when I looked up you were standing in the same place, with an alert look on your face, as if you were listening.

You looked at me and said: “I have to run.”

It was the stupidest thing I’d ever heard. The whole camp was monitored practically up to the moon. There was no way to get outside.

But you tried. You left my room, and you went straight out your window and broke your ankle.

A week later, you were back. You were on crutches and you looked . . . wrecked. Destroyed. Somebody’d cut your hair, shaved it close to the scalp. Your eyes stood out, huge and shining.

“They put in a bug in me,” you whispered.

And I just knew. I knew what you were going to do.

• • •

Max came to see me a few days ago. I’ve felt sick ever since. Max is the same, hunched and timid; you’d know her if you saw her. She sat in my living room and I gave her coffee and lemon cookies and she took one bite of a cookie and started crying.

Cee, we miss you, we really do.

Max told me she’s pregnant. I said congratulations. I knew she and Evan have been wanting one for a while. She covered her eyes with her hands—she still bites her nails, one of them was bleeding—and she just cried.

“Hey, Max,” I said, “it’s okay.”

I figured she was extra-emotional from hormones or whatever, or maybe she was thinking what a short time she’d have with her kid, now that kids start camp at eight years old.

“It’s okay,” I told her, even though I’d never have kids—I couldn’t stand it.

They say it’s easier on the kids, going to camp earlier. We—me and you and Max—we were the tail end of Generation Teen. Max’s kid will belong to Generation Eight. It’s supposed to be a happier generation, but I’m guessing it will be sort of like us. Like us, the kids of Generation Eight will be told they’re sad, that they need their parents and that’s why they have Parent Figures, so that they can always be reminded of what they’ve lost, so that they can remember they need what they have now.

I sat across the coffee table from Max, and she was crying and I wasn’t hugging her because I don’t really hug people anymore, not even Pete really, I’m sort of mean that way, it’s just how I turned out, and Max said “Do you remember that night in the bathroom with Cee?”

Do I remember?

Her eyes were all swollen. She hiccupped. “I can’t stop thinking about it. I’m scared.” She said she had to send a report to her doctor every day on her phone. How was she feeling, had she vomited? Her morning sickness wasn’t too bad, but she’d thrown up twice, and both times she had to go in for a check-up.

“So?” I said.

“So—they always put you to sleep, you know . . .”

“Yeah.”

I just said “Yeah.” Just sat there in front of her and said “Yeah.” Like I was a rock. After a while I could tell she was feeling uncertain, and then she felt stupid. She picked up her stuff and blew her nose and went home. She left the tissues on the table, one of them spotted with blood from her bitten nail. I haven’t really been sleeping since she left. I mean, I’ve always had trouble sleeping, but now it’s a lot worse, especially since I started writing in your book. I just feel sick, Cee, I feel really sick. All those check-ups, so regular, everyone gets them, but you’re definitely supposed to go in if you’re feeling nauseous, if you’ve vomited, it might be a superflu! The world is full of viruses, good health is everybody’s business! And yeah, they put you to sleep every time. Yeah. “They put a bug in me,” you said. Camp was so fun. Jodi came to us, wringing her hands. “Cee has been having some problems, and it’s up to all of us to look after her, girls!Campers stick together!” But we didn’t stick together, did we? I woke up and you were shouting in the hall, and I ran out there and you were hopping on your good foot, your toothbrush in one hand, your Mother Figure notebook in the other, and I knew exactly what they’d caught you doing. How did they catch you? Were there really cameras in the bathroom? Jodi’d called Duncan, and that was how I knew how bad it was: Hunky Duncan in the girls’ hallway, just outside the bathroom, wearing white shorts and a seriously pissed-off expression. He and Jodi were grabbing you and you were fighting them off. “Tisha,” called Jodi, “it’s okay, Cee’s just sick, she’s going to the hospital.” You threw the notebook. “Take it!” you snarled. Those were your last words. Your last words to me. I never saw you again except in dreams. Yeah, I see you in dreams. I see you in your white lacy nightgown. Cee, I feel sick. At night I feel so sick, I walk around in circles. There’s waves of sickness and waves of something else, something that calms me, something that’s trying to make the sickness go away. Up and down it goes, and I’m just in it, just trying to stand it, and then I sleep again, and I dream you’re beside me, we’re leaning over the toilet, and down at the very bottom there’s something like a clump of trees and two tiny girls are standing there giving us the finger. It’s not where I came from, but it’s where I started. I think of how bright it was in the bathroom that night, how some kind of loss swept through all of us, electric, and you’d started it, you’d started it by yourself, and we were with you in that hilarious and total rage of loss. Let’s lose it. Let’s lose everything. Camp wasn’t fun. Camp was a fucking factory. I go out to the factory on Fridays to check my lists over coffee with Elle. The bus passes shattered buildings, stick people rooting around in the garbage. Three out of five graduating classes join the army. Give me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change! How did I even get here? I’d ask my mom if she wasn’t a fucking lamp. Cee, I feel sick. I should just grab my keys, get some money, and run to Max’s house, we should both be sick, everybody should lose it together. I shouldn’t have told you not to tell the others. We all should have gone together. My fault. I dream I find you and Puss in a bathroom in the train station. There’s blood everywhere, and you laugh and tell me it’s hair dye. Cee, it’s so bright it makes me sick. I have to go now. It’s got to come out.

How to Get Back to the Forest – Lightspeed Magazine
http://www.lightspeedmagazine.com/fiction/how-to-get-back-to-the-forest/

A STORY OF LOVE DESTINED TO BE: MIRACLE BY CHANCE

Miracle by Chance

by Jeannette Gardner
(Canada)

Our Wedding Day

Our Wedding Day

©Copyright – by Jeannette Gardner (December, 2007)

A Story of Love Destined to Be!

This is a ‘true story’ about how I met my boyfriend (now husband) on a dating site on the Internet. It’s the unbelievable story behind it that’s truly amazing of fate and destiny!

I used to hang out at a country bar called the Club Palomino. I loved listening to good bands there, and dancing to their country rock music. I used to drag my friend out to see my favourite band playing called Cheyenne, who were amazing and always packed the place. My friend and I used to get up and dance to their songs. I was interested in the rhythm guitar player in the band, to me, he was the best looking one, and I loved his voice along with his rhythm guitar sound. Yes, I had the ‘hots’ for him and would goggle eye him playing his guitar/singing while I was on the dance floor, or just standing at the bar listening and staring. I’ve always had this thing for bands as I play guitar too, and always wanted to play in a band. They played there for a long time and were the best band at the Club Palomino. I would go there as much as I could just to hear them play, and of course, always watching my favourite player. The sad part about it was I used to see him with a blonde girl, not knowing if she was his girlfriend or wife.

After seeing them playing there for a long time, the Club Palomino closed down. Yes, the club had been sold. Wouldn’t you know it, a huge townhouse sub-division was put up and the club was gone. So were all the bands and my favourite band, Cheyenne.

When I first found out about the club closing down, I wanted to approach Cheyenne; particularly the rhythm guitar player and ask where they would be playing in the future. But I didn’t have enough courage to do that. I guess things happen for a reason.

15 YEARS LATER……

As time went on I met someone and got married. That was a mistake. Eventually we got a divorce. I started going out to bars, again, got tired of it and not meeting anyone decent enough. I wasn’t crazy about the bands playing at other bars either. Later, a friend told me to join a particular dating site on the Internet, which I thought I would never do. But, I thought I would check it out for fun as I heard so much about it through people even meeting their soul mates from that site. Surprisingly enough, I had a few dates, meeting in public places, but just didn’t find the right one and thought I never would from a dating site. I sort of gave up on it until one night after getting home from a bar, which I hated, I went on my computer. For some reason I logged in that site again which I was really glad I did. I got an interesting email from a guy and liked his picture. I was also touched by his email and that he was also interested in my picture and profile.

From then on we started emailing each other quite a lot from that site. We seemed to have so much in common through our emails. We continued writing and eventually got on MSN, and chatted for quite some time. He was Bulgarian and I was Hungarian, how common was that! We discovered from our MSN chats that we had so much in common. It was really amazing. Our families even lived in the same town of all places. We chatted every night as often as we could.

And then, a miracle happened! We started chatting on our computers about music. Wow! We also liked all the same music and we both wrote songs. I told

him I liked country music and used to frequent a particular bar about 15 years ago, which had closed down. Of course he asked me the name of the bar back then. I told him the Club Palomino. He was really surprised and told me he used to play there. I wasn’t sure whether to believe him or not! He said he would send me a picture of his band that played there. I thought, ‘yeah right’ to myself as I waited patiently in front of my computer for the picture. Lo and behold, a huge picture came up on my screen: CHEYENNE, CLUB PALOMINO. I freaked! I couldn’t believe it! It was him in the picture with Cheyenne. The guy I was interested in who was the rhythm guitar player in my favourite band. I was so shocked that I went crazy seeing this picture! It was just unbelievable! Like a miracle happened suddenly! Like a fairy tale! We carried on chatting every moment we had for some time, and eventually he gave me his phone number. We started talking on the phone every night. It was just amazing all the things we had in common about everything! Yes, it was too good to be true!

After about three weeks of talking on the phone every night, chatting on the computer and exchanging pictures, we decided to meet. I was brave enough for him to pick me up at my mother’s place as I developed this trust in him, by his voice and his honesty. I met him downstairs in front of my mother’s apartment building. He got out of his car, and the first thing we did was look at each other and started laughing and laughing like crazy, and couldn’t stop laughing! He took me to the local Canadian Legion where we talked, had a drink together (still laughing) and we got more acquainted. Eventually we went into another room and sat down at a table. After a while, he asked me if I didn’t mind if he got up on stage to do a solo. Hey, a man singing with his guitar was like being in heaven. He got up on stage and started playing his guitar and singing in front of an audience. That did it for me. I was hooked! And the guy I admired 15 years ago was performing in front of my eyes, and, was my date! I was in heaven!

We dated for about two years and it was absolutely wonderful. Eventually we bought a condo. Then, the final surprise! After moving into our condo, we looked out the window and to our astonishment what did we see? The office building of the dating site we joined, of all things! What a coincidence that was! We have been together since 2003, playing music, and still laughing! We are just two peas in a pod!

He met my friend who I was with at the Club Palomino 15 years ago, and he also remembered seeing us dancing while his band Cheyenne played. He also remembered me standing at the bar at times. I used to watch him go to the bar for his coffee and I know our eyes met each other’s at that time. It sure is strange crossing one another’s paths some 15 years ago—and now, being together in a different time in the future, and remembering!

And by the way, that blonde girl he was with at the Club Palomino, was the girl he eventually married which lasted eight years. He went through a brutal divorce. He did tell me that when I first saw him at the Club Palomino 15 years ago, that I should have approached him and told him she was ‘bad news’. It’s funny how life is, it just wasn’t meant to be back then.

Fate brought us together. We met our ‘soul mates’! We got married on Nov. 21, 2009.

+18 ROMANCE : THE SIGHT OF HER LEGS | GBAMLOG 

The Sight of Her Legs

by IsaacTolkien

Copyright© 2019 by IsaacTolkien

He saw the brown-haired girl sitting at the front. She was the only girl in the room wearing shorts, and her legs were perfect. Her skin appeared so soft and smooth that he found himself unable to tear his eyes away from the long shining limbs of perfection. She had on a blue sweater above it, a sweater with a gold zipper drawing a beeline to her bright red lips. He wondered what it would be like to kiss those bright red lips, gaze into those shining blue eyes, stroke those legs, caress that delightfully slim waist.

She was the last in the circle of food bank volunteers, and it was her turn to introduce herself at the orientation meeting. “My name is Jen,” she said in a sweet, sincere voice, “and I’m a senior at Connolly High. I’m here ‘cause I want to help those less well off than me. Also my school has a community service requirement to graduate…”. He didn’t pay as much attention to her actual words, listening more to the sound of her voice, quivering with the nervousness that comes from addressing a group of two dozen strangers, but it charmed him with its cuteness. She was such a sweet little thing.

He himself had told his particulars to the group a few minutes before. His name was Mark, he was thirty-nine years old, unmarried, had volunteered at the food bank because he felt it was his civic duty. Actually, he was there because he couldn’t endure the empty silences in his apartment, but that didn’t seem like a good thing to tell everyone.

Jen finished and sat down. The group leader started to drone on, but Mark was no longer listening. He was thinking of the beautiful girl opposite him, her simple, yet tantalizing shape and demeanor. She looked so precious, and yet so luscious. He wanted to pinch her cheek. Or kiss her cheek. Or kiss her lips.

His mind began to wander. He imagined her lips melting against his, his tongue probing greedily into her mouth. He thought of her chest pressed against his, her breathing starting to quicken. He wondered what it would be like to lower the zipper of those jeans, to see her waist wiggle as it slid off.

I want her, Mark thought. I want to see what she looks like naked, lick my chops at her perfect pussy, stick my dick deep inside her and shoot off my load. She can’t be more than eighteen years old. Dammit! What could she see in a man like me, twice her age?

That night Mark couldn’t get Jen out of his mind. He lay in bed, thinking about those legs, those sinuous legs, those legs that seemed to be made from a material that transcended the world and took him somewhere far away. His cock hardened into erection, oozing precum, by the sheer power of the memory of her face, her body. The way she stood, the way her legs shone in the light as everyone had walked to the parking lot on the way out. He lay there, his cock jerking, until he could endure no more, and masturbated himself to climax, wishing all the while that it was her hand on his cock instead of his own.


“We’ll put you in teams of two; one for each set of boxes, ok? Taylor, you go with James. Steve; you’re with Penny. Jen … you’ll sort with Mark.”

“Jen, you’ll sort with Mark!” Mark nearly jumped out of his chair. For an entire afternoon he would be sorting donated food across the table from a girl whose image he had masturbated to every night for a week. He was actually trembling when he got to his spot, but Jen wasn’t there. Typical, she probably wants to hang with some handsome guy instead of me, he thought gloomily. With a sigh, he set about the work of sorting the huge pile of cans, jars, and boxes all by himself.

Then he felt a tap on his shoulder.

“Hi Mark!”

There she was, the bright red lips, the pretty blue eyes, the smooth long brown hair. She was smiling at him. She was quite short, several inches shorter than he, but he still felt very small in her sensuous presence. He could only gape, not just at her, but at her outfit. She had on a plain white top and a very short skirt. Connolly High School, it said in bright red letters. “Sorry I’m late,” he could hear her saying, “but I had to go to cheerleading practice after school.” He nodded, gesturing towards the cans, “R … right over there … you can do th … that side” he sputtered. She giggled and got to work.

Mark could feel his heart racing. Years before, when he had been in high school, his dreams had been filled with the image of cheerleaders with their warm smiles and flitting short skirts. He remembered how they would jump up, often showing their panties, at the victories of the football team. Mark had not been on the football team. He was captain of the debating team, and had won prizes at math contests, but cheerleaders never went to that kind of event. He had always longed for the touch of their soft nubile bodies…

“So tell me about yourself, Mark!”

She was talking to him! He stared back at her, never hard to do with a pretty teenager in a cheerleader’s uniform. He tried to look into her eyes as he answered, but some mystical force sent his eyes back down to her bare, smooth legs.

“I’m … I’m an eng-engineer.”

“An engineer? That’s so cool! You must be really smart!”

He blushed.

“So what kind of engineering do you do?”

“Um … I … um … well … I do dig … digital imaging. Scanners and graphics and stuff.” He had given entire presentations on this topic elsewhere, but with this little girl it was all he could do to blurt out a sentence. She grinned at him, almost as if to reassure.

“So you’re like, into photography and stuff like that?”

“Y-yes. I do a lot of that work … I have a portfolio, in fact.”

“You do? I’d love to see it sometime! I love photography!”

“Th-that’s great!”

“Do you think you could give me some tips?”

This … this sweet little delight was interested in him? Nonsense, he thought, you’re just a mentor figure to her. She’s probably thinking of you just like one of her teachers at school. At that thought, he couldn’t help looking at her shapely legs again, and wished with all his heart that he was a teacher, and could spend half his day looking at pretty girls.

She continued chatting with him as they sorted, and gradually he trembled less, relaxed, and grew more comfortable. She had such a sweet smile, and a delightful, almost angelic face. His eyes roved over her body constantly as they talked and sorted. Seeing that short little skirt, barely covering her underpants, he wondered at what delights lay underneath. What would it be like to lift that skirt up, to pull those panties down, to fondle the ass and pussy that lay hidden inside it?

On the way home after the work was done, Mark’s mind was filled with thoughts of that luscious teenage body. Have to get her out of my head, he thought, and pulled out his phone. His bookmark collection had all the right links. One web site was headlined by a brown-haired girl, with a caption brashly saying, “SPURT YOUR JISM IN MY MOUTH!” She looked a little like Jen, though not quite as pretty. He scrolled through the site. There were the usual pictures of naked women, women spreading their vagina lips wide, women’s mouths hovering over a cock, women’s lips touching another woman’s lips. He thought of Jen doing all those things, and the telltale bulge began to surge in his pants.

“Hi Mark!”

He looked down. It was Jen! He turned beet red, teeth chattering. She had caught him looking at porn! Surely she’ll think I’m a pervert now. He gingerly started to put the phone away, but she was all smiles. “You don’t have to put it away.”

“I’m sorry … I … what?”

“I love those sites! In fact, can I tell you a secret?”

“Okay.”

“Let me whisper it in your ear.”

He bent down and her lips grazed his ear. He felt a tingle run through him as he felt her breath, but that paled into comparison to what he felt next. “I want have my own site like that one day!”

Mark’s jaw dropped and he stared at her, no longer attempting to hide the lust in his eyes. She grinned impishly. “When you said you were into photography, I even hoped if you might take some pictures of me!”

His eyes widened. He could not seem to get any words out.

As if in a dream, he heard his mouth uttering the words. “I would be glad to … you must come to my studio sometime.”

“Okay.” She smiled. “Where is it?”

“Um … the corner of Gilmore and Anderson.”

“Okay,” she said. “Could we make it this Saturday?”

This Saturday. Five days! “S-sure. What, um, what time do you think?”

“How about three?”

“Three, three … yes, of course. Three’s fine.”

“So we’ll see you then!” She started to head out, but turned around and said, “Enjoy your sites!” licking her lips wickedly. Mark felt his face turning red, but he also felt his erection rising within him.

The next five days seemed to last forever. At night, lying in bed, Mark let his imagination run wild, dreaming of Jen’s seductive body, fantasizing about having her, drinking in her lush youthfulness. Every night the image of Jen drove his dick to throbbing ecstasy, and every night he exploded into his hands and sheets, wishing only that it was her soft flesh that was receiving his cum.

Three o’clock on Saturday came. Mark had already been there over two hours, straightening everything out, making everything as spotless and organized as it had ever been. I’m still trying to impress the girls, he thought, still, at my age. His thoughts were interrupted by a knock on the door. Jen! He rushed upstairs.

There she was in front of the door. She was wearing a white halter top and a white skirt, a very short skirt that seemed to cover very little. He gaped at her navel, round and inviting. He gawked at her curvaceous waist, which seemed almost designed to lock his eyes onto them like a homing beacon.

Wordless, he motioned her inside, and down the stairs to the studio. She playfully danced down them as he trudged behind her, almost like a priest following a goddess. She was such a pretty, cheerful girl!

He got out his camera, and they went to work. As a model, she was a photographer’s dream, eager to perform, thinking of the next pose almost as soon as the shutter clicked, hardly needing any prompting or correction.

Jen standing in front of one of his backgrounds, grinning. Snap. She puts her leg on a stool, giving the camera a straight view of her panties. Snap. Teasingly, she begins to lift her skirt up. Snap. She starts to slide out of her uniform. Snap.

And then she was standing there in her underwear, and Mark’s cock was as hard as a rock. He had never in his life seen a pretty teenage girl wearing so little. He stared at her, her delightfully curved waist, the luscious breasts under her bra, the inviting V-shape of her panties. She looked at the wet spot on his crotch and giggled. “You know what I think,” she said, “when you’ve got the asses, show the masses!” She turned around and bent over, flaunting her half-covered ass in his face.

He took a picture of that, and many other things. She lay down coyly, leering at the camera. She knelt on the floor, tugging at the underwear. She stood plainly, smiling, as her nearly nude image was recorded.

They had already filled up one micro-disk, but she said, “Now comes the fun part.”

“The – fun part?”

“Yep.” With a quick motion, she peeled off her underwear, and stood there, as naked as the day she was born. Mark’s eyes bulged. Her pubic hair was also dark brown, straight and smooth, as fine as a lion’s mane. He could see the small outline of her pussy lips, luring him into their delights.

“I want you to take pictures of me naked.”

He stared. “Naked?”

“Yup. I’m gonna sell them on the Net. Lots of guys visit my web site and want nude pictures of me, and I figure that now that I’m eighteen, I can give them what they want, and make some money doing it.”

Mark felt himself starting to shake. She knelt down and spread her legs wide, grinning at him. “Does this turn you on?” she asked. Embarrassed, he could only nod. “OK, then take pictures of me whenever you’re turned on. Then I know the pic you’re taking is really hot!”

Mark started to click more pictures. Jen on her knees, fingers pointing invitingly at her pussy. Jen playfully revealing her breasts, pulling up her shirt. Jen lying on her side, seductively, the curves of her body tantalizing Mark so much he found himself wiggling.

Seeing how uncomfortable he was, Jen said, “You know Mark, I know you have a big hard-on. Why don’t you unzip your pants so you can be more comfortable?” It felt like a dream. Mark’s dick sprang out his zipper opening, pointing straight at Jen, visibly wet on its end.

She looked at it, wonderingly. She found that looking at it to be a quick and simple way of gauging the effectiveness of her poses. She wanted to use the power of her body, wanted Mark and men like him to hunger for her, desire for her, long to ravish and take her nubile form.

For Mark, the evening seemed like a dream. It was a dream, a fantasy, a pretty nude teenage girl dancing and prancing around in the most provocative poses she could think of. Visions of her luscious breasts, her silken thighs, her glistening pubic hair, her shimmeringly curved body blurred his vision and fogged his brain, so much so that he could scarcely now tell the difference between fantasy and reality.

Was that really her? Jen, the teenage hottie, saying that he deserved a reward for his work? Was that her hand touching his cock, fumbling at his pants, letting in a rush of air on his now naked skin? No, surely this isn’t real, he thought, surely I’m not being pushed into my sofa, surely Jen is not kneeling before me, mouth moving towards my dick. But it was real. She was really there. She brought her mouth closer to the head of his cock and kissed it quickly on its head.

A tingle of electricity surged through his body. He found himself sprawled on the couch, his cock as hard as a ramrod. He gazed down at Jen’s angelic face. She looked up at him and smiled, a sweet, innocent smile that excited him so much that he squirmed, his dick slapping against her cheeks. Laughing, she opened her mouth wide, impossibly wide. He saw it envelop his cock, felt the wet moisture of her breath on him.

A beautiful eighteen-year-old is sucking my cock, seared the thought into his brain. He felt the softness of her tongue massage his underside. He felt her go down, licking over his balls, nibbling on his inner thighs, teasing his groin, then swirling her tongue around the head of his cock again. He was moaning loudly now, feeling his body teased almost to the breaking point.

He looked down again and nearly fainted. There she was, her lovely mouth taking his cock all the way inside. “I’m gonna cum,” he said, but in response she only quickened the pace of her sucking. He felt wild abandon as his orgasm pulsed, flooding her young mouth with his cum. “Oh god, oh god oh god oh god,” he nearly screamed. His entire body was spent, and he was heaving.

Jen rose to her feet, her eyes twinkling, her body naked as a jaybird. He looked again at her perfect breasts, her inviting pubic hair, the rhythmic curves of her nubile body. She looked at him straight in the face and ostentatiously swallowed. Mark’s eyes widened in their sockets. She grinned, then turned around, wiggling her butt invitingly at him as she walked over to the mattress.

She flopped down onto it and spread her legs wide. Mark got up, advancing towards her, wanting to take that young body, wanting to ravish it, possess it, luxuriate in its youth and splendor and beauty. He looked at her beautiful pussy, saw the moisture on it glistening in the light, and felt his heart race. He saw her clit strutting between her lips proudly, confident in itself, standing at attention in the wonder that was her nudity. Then she said the words he longed to hear.

“Take me.”

Mark didn’t need to be told twice. She was his, a naked teenage girl, to fuck and suck and lick as he pleased. He felt the fire within him stir at the sight of her legs, spread open invitingly, tantalizing him with her fruits. He jumped onto her body, hands grasping, groping, his lips tearing into her, his breath hard on hers, his cock stabbing into her body. “Give it to me! Give me your dick!” she screamed. He almost crushed her with his weight, feeling his own body writhe and squirm as the wild passion coursed through him.

He swung back his hips and rammed his cock inside her, thrusting, hard, like a maniac, filled with lust, consumed with desire for that juicy young teenage flesh. I’m going to have her, he thought, I’m really going to have her. He fucked her as hard as he could, jolting his body into hers with all the force he could muster. Her face was writhed in desire, her eyes were rolling, her voice was moaning. He could feel the wetness of her pussy juices on his loins, the pressure of her pussy squeezing his cock.

“Yes … YES…” she screamed out as he felt her body tighten, shake, and vibrate into orgasm. The pressure of her pussy lips on his ramrod made him explode in a shattering climax of his own. His juice flooded into her, creaming her insides, exhausting them both with the sheer force and verve of its impact.

There they lay on the floor together, their bodies tingling, their minds racing. Mark still could hardly believe this was happening, all the more so when he felt the touch of Jen’s lips on his. It was a sweet, slow, soft kiss, the kind of kiss that can put a perfect finishing touch to a day of sheerest magic. He held her tightly against him, feeling her breasts on his chest and her ass in his hand.

“You know, you’re a really cool guy,” Jen said softly. “I’ve thought of asking other guys to do my photos but I’ve never felt comfortable with anyone like I do with you.”

“I have never in my life met a girl like you before.”

“I’m gonna need lots of pictures for my site, videos too. I could come over every week after the food bank and we could take some more? Would that be ok?”

Mark’s eyes widened.

“I can’t pay you though … at least … not with money,” she said slyly. He looked again, up and down, at her shapely figure and sighed.

“I look forward to it.”

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