It was one of those really hot days, when the air was so thick it was hard to breathe.  I lay in bed with a fan aimed at my face.  Every window and door was open, and I could see all the way to the front door.  There leaned with his back against the door jam, was Marco smoking a cigarette.  I hated it when he smoked; it made his mouth taste bad.  Sweat rolled down his tanned cheek from his hairline, dripping on the shirtless bronze chest of this Greek god of a figure.  When his hand came up to take the cigarette from his mouth, the muscles rippled in his bigger-than-my-head tattooed bicep.  His jeans hung slightly slanted at his hips; maybe it was the way he stood.  The jeans were so tight that you would be able to bounce a nickel off his ass, and he didn't have to be hard for you to know what else he was packin'.  No shoes, and I watched as his toes rolled a bottle cap on the concrete of the stairs, aimlessly.  He stared out into the bright sun, squinting a little, smoking.

Our life wasn't bad together, we didn't have a lot, but we had each other.  Marco did odd jobs, worked on people's cars, whatever he could find.  I did nails and hair for the neighborhood, I charged way less than the salons, it was enough to cover some supplies and still make a little money.   

 We would try to stay cool until the sun goes down.  Then after washing the soot of the city off of us, we would meet our friends in the street.  In the dark by the streetlight, we'd gather.  The boys would tell stories, real or imagined, as they kept an arm possessively around their girl.  Somehow, there was always money for beer, and the boys would get louder and more aggressive as the night wore on.  The fight was usually over something very stupid, and thankfully, it wasn't every time that someone was hurt.

It was when the night ended that I sometimes became afraid.  When Marco had too much to drink, he was mean.  He would imagine that I smiled at one of his friends, or whispered to them.  Those nights he would run his fingers into my hair and ball his fist.  He would lead me home by my hair, yanking his hand and swearing.  I had to be very careful to keep my eyes down when we were around the other boys.

On other nights, he couldn't keep his hands off me.  He would stop to kiss me several times on the way home and shove his big hands up my sides under my shirt.  I was embarrassed and saw people looking.  He told me that they were just jealous; I don't know maybe they were.  He was so drunk one night, and in a good mood, that he had sex with me on the stairs to our building.  He said nobody saw us.  He was quick that night so maybe he was right.

I have to be extra careful today and make sure he doesn't drink too much.  I need him to be in a good mood.  Not for the reason you think.  I have news for him.  He's going to be a father.


03/04/2013 3:35am

Neat tale, pared down and 'ripped'. Satisfying to read, but we're still ready for more.

03/04/2013 4:39am

Thanks Kevin! I extended it somewhat and it will be in a ezine this week.


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