Bond of Union by MC Escher

I think our mom breast-fed my brother and me longer than normal. I asked her once. She got all red and changed the subject. I didn't remember clearly, which is why I asked, but I do have this scene in mind of watching her nurse Mikey. I must have been about five at the time—I was in preschool—which would have made him three already. He had bumped his head on the coffee table, or something, and was screaming like a siren, until she scooped him up and pressed his face to her chest. Morning, it must have been, because Mom had on her bathrobe. Dad was gone, probably off at work. So there they were on the davenport, Mikey still blubbering, Mom adjusting her robe, exposing her breast.

How I could see all this without being seen myself must have meant I was sitting half way up the stairs. We had a landing, in our old house, with thick bars and a banister that made for a perfect lookout. Anyway, Mikey calmed down, once his mouth latched on, while I imagined the taste. Mom seemed calm, too. In fact her dreamy appearance was what impressed me most. Instead of envying Mikey, I started to wonder what it would feel like to be sucked there. Obviously I have more curiosity now than I did back then, but even as a toddler I got odd sensations when anything touched my nipples—unpleasant ones usually. My skin reacted painfully to most fabric, for instance. Flannel felt okay, but wool was torture. So was anything knitted, unless it had really soft yarn. This "hypersensitivity," I guess you'd call it, grew up with me. I'm sixteen and a third, as of this writing, and I still can't stand stuff chafing my skin up top.

Getting back to the scene I was describing, nothing much happened for a while. Mikey's cheeks kept shifting from pudgy to hollow to pudgy. Mom had her eyes closed. Sunshine was slanting in through the living room window. It made a bright yellow stripe across Mom's lap, which is maybe why I noticed what I did. Her hand was there. And it was moving under the terrycloth. Not a lot, or really fast, like she was masturbating. But that's what she was doing, all right, in her own quite way. Again, I had no idea about this at the time. All I knew was that something very pleasant must be going on; Mom's face got the sweetest expression. It was like something hurt for a second; then all of a sudden her lips formed this goofy little grin. Like she was retarded. I don't mean that in a cruel way; she looked beautiful. But hers was truly a simpleminded smile.

I know enough about sex these days to interpret this scene with authority—not that I masturbate all the time; I don't. I don't really have to; those "odd sensations" I mentioned have gotten a whole lot stronger. Shortly after my first period, I believe it was, they shifted from being sort of all-over buzzy feelings to ones that zeroed in on a spot between my legs. How I discovered this was innocent enough. I wanted to join my high school's cross-country track team. The support bra I bought didn't prevent my jersey from rubbing across my breasts, which is not all that uncommon among us girls whose boobs bounce up and down no matter how tightly we strap them down. Anyway, to reduce the friction, I tried coating my nipples with Vaseline. That initial application caused such a wild reaction, I climaxed just from daubing it on and working it in. True I massaged myself longer than was necessary. But once that buzz began it was hard to stop. Besides, I was curious. All my friends talk incessantly about their sexual experiences, while I just listen in like the village dolt. They call me "VV," holding up both hands in double 'victory' gestures to signify "Vegan Virgin"—as if my being a vegetarian has something to do with my never having had sex. I haven't had sex because I'm not married. Of course I'd never tell them that. The fact that I'm "uninitiated," as they call it, makes me unpopular enough; to imply that they're immoral would wall me off for good. In my heart of hearts, however, I'm pretty sure I'm right. Sex is powerful stuff and should not be treated lightly.

I mean, think about it. A boy is going to put his penis inside your vagina. Even sheathed in latex that's a serious proposition. To begin with, it's going to hurt; everyone says so. The skin down there has to tear or the boy can't get in. To tell you the truth, this worries me. Maybe I'm abnormal, but my vagina is so tight my pinky won't even fit. I know it's only supposed to hurt once, but that's not the point. I want someone to care that I have to heal—you know, afterwards.

My other big worry—aside from disease and accidental pregnancy—is whether intercourse is really worth it. As I said earlier, with only the slightest stimulation I can get an orgasm (more than one if I do what my mother did). I can't imagine anything feeling any nicer. It's like my whole body turns from solid into this warm, gooey liquid, flowing, flowing, until I practically dissolve. It's kind of personal, though; I'm not so sure about sharing it. Even writing it down seems sort of… indiscreet. And when I think about boys, especially the ones at school… Yuk! There isn't a single one I'd want for a mate—and making-love is reserved for my future husband only.

Is that dumb, or what? I mean, everyone experiments. How decide 'whom' to marry, knowing zilch about sex?

Well, here's my theory. If 'coitus' is all it's cracked up to be, doing it must feel better than sex by yourself. Again, picturing Mom that day way back when, part of her pleasure had to be Mikey's sucking her. A big part. I'll bet if Dad had been doing it she wouldn't have needed her fingers. Just imagine getting all those lovely tingles while doing nothing whatsoever to yourself! And when you consider that boys get orgasms, too, sex together has got to be out of this world. Therefore, choosing the best possible partner only makes sense. I mean, whenever I've had a really wonderful time doing something—like learning to ride my skateboard or getting a sketch just right in after-school Art—I've associated the thrill with the people involved. Wouldn't it be great to associate sex with the first boy you fall in love with, and for him to be your sweetheart forever and a day?

I do not believe in divorce, obviously. Sure, people make mistakes, but some mistakes you simply have to accept. Like the time I burned my arm on the rack inside our oven. I still have the scar. I'll have it always. But I wouldn't trade my arm for a new one, even if that were possible. Instead, I've learned to live with a nasty patch of skin. When I get married it will be the same. Handsome, ugly, or any combination, I'll stick by my man "till death doth us part."

Jaime put down the felt-tip pen to reread her secret chronicle. As usual, she sat at her desk facing the bedroom window, its view monopolized lushly by the elm tree outside, a breeze arousing its summer leaves, stirring them like faces in a whispering crowd. Dense, intimate, sequestering, the foliage afforded fleeting glimpses of the nightgowned girl. Light, cast mutedly by a lamp near her elbow, lent both flesh and fabric a lunar-like glint. Not especially pretty (and a bit too smart academically to entice purely predatory types), Jamie maintained reclusiveness without widespread objection. Socially, hers was an orbit, eluding sister females no less than antithetic males. Which is not to say her attributes went overlooked.

Jim found Jaime "spectacular"—Jim (sobriquet "James" since entering University) was now a junior completing his second student-teaching assignment at Edison High. Technically speaking, Jaime was his student. Ethically speaking, teachers were not to lust after their pupils. James took this prohibition seriously. He also considered his attraction to a minor somewhat embarrassing. But Jamie Von Hagen, in Mr. Lars' fifth period English Literature class, was so bright, so unspoiled, and so pleasingly proportioned that James needed mental blinkers to keep himself from ogling. A breast-lover from infancy, he saw at a glance that Jaime's (for him) were ideal: high on the chest, uniformly round, nipples slightly pronounced and impertinently upturned.

Cold showers were no cure; "take a quick, cold shower, lad," was his father's advice whenever sensing Jim's agitation about school work, sports, or "the ladies." A widower, James Senior always spoke respectfully when referring to the opposite sex; "in consideration of your dearly departed Mum," he would explain, affecting the British term (for some obscure sentiment's sake). Despite their reputation as 'the neighborhood's most eligible bachelors,' James and James observed strict decorum where women were concerned. Perhaps their household, through lack of a feminine presence, bred an appreciation for all things fair. "Old-fashioned" was often ascribed to father and son alike.

The water ran icily. Having worked up a heavy sweat during his 10K Saturday evening round-the-park run, Jim's backbone arched involuntarily. His very pores shuddered. Goose flesh formed as the flush in his skin shed red... blanched... then redefined the tan lines bordering his Caucasian buttocks. Built well, albeit leanly—muscle mass offset by a lithesome grace—Jim had a trim physique (like his Dad's), made all the more compelling by its 'European' posture. Americans tended to slouch. Whereas Jim—with shoulders straight, haunches firm—always had the look of an 'upright young man.'

Turning off the sole spigot, he watched as rivulets trickled the length of his tapered torso. Like a massive oak whose roots grew thickest at its base, hair conducted each droplet to the young man's crotch… temptation therein stirring… flaccid tissue thawing then, perversely, growing stiff. Absurd, really, the way ones penis filled with blood then pointed… at no one in particular… at the shower stall tiles, in the present instance… its angle of arousal surmounting perpendicular… aimed, as it were, at some imperceptible object of Jim's desire… at Jaime Von Hagen, for example… positing twofold targets in the flesh above her ribs… plotting a trajectory for his post-pubescent gene pool… mesmerized by twin equidistant puckers that blushingly betrayed their being squeezed… manipulated… smeared with Vaseline… nightgown breached like the seam of an over-ripened peapod.

Ooooo, that's the spot!

Paralyzed by pleasure, Jaime barely squirmed against the tongue of rude elation scandalizing her pudenda… lapping tart secretions like a half-starved incubus… infiltrating folds that had never known a man. Like acupressure points inscrutably connected, clitoris and nipples jointly hummed… palpitated… turned feverish in the evening's snug humidity.

Why did she feel guilty, Jaime wondered? Why would she just die if her parents barged in? Not that either would. Firstly, people knocked before entering a person's bedroom. Secondly, she was sure she had locked the door. Was sex wrong then, or simply… private? Eating ice cream on a hot afternoon gave her as much satisfaction, almost. Why feel any different about fondling one's tits?

Correction: 'breasts.' Only boys and slutty girls used vulgar terms to describe anatomy. True, she herself said 'boobs,' from time to time, but that was for variety's sake. Words reflected attitudes. Dirty talk suggested a dirty mind. And sex—at least solitary sex—was not the least bit unsanitary. Not as Jaime practiced it. Seldom did she conjure up anything unclean. And never did she fantasize doing it with somebody else… until this very moment… when Mr. Lars' assistant leapt to mind… or, rather, formed a hazy picture on her eyelids' fluttering undersides… coming into focus like a self-developing Polaroid… naked as the day, she observed, he was born… although furrier… his chest replete with hair in the shape of a tree… its trunk a shaggy line that descended to his navel then branched out to surround what bobbed beneath… slick and shiny with baby oil from the bottle James kept handy… swollen like an eel about to burst its purplish hide... frightening in both animated pulse and uncouth dimensions.

Did Dad jack off in the shower, James suddenly pondered? His question served to delay, thereby prolong, the unruly urge… as if he had squashed his glans, which he did for good measure… the flow of blood reversed, momentarily, its ebb become an infusion that reinstated poise… then self-consciousness; this act was ignominious, in some vague way. No, Dad was more dignified. Dad had learned to curb his reproductive drive… fortified, no doubt, by loyalty to his spouse… to "Mommy," as Jim remembered her. His most enduring keepsake was how she had smelled. Like what? Like nothing he had smelled since. Certain aromas could remind him: freshly baked bread, for example; overturned earth, or dust when sprinkled with rain; vanilla extract. But none of these described her scent save symbolically.

Jaime, Jaime, Jaime. Almost limp, Jim's sex resumed its autocratic stand. Breasts were his obsession. What would it be like to have and to hold them? To paw their soft circumference? To suck their spongy pith?

And what would it be like to hold and to have them? To feel their twofold heftiness? To flex one's pectoral muscles and still stay supple?

Glancing down, the planes that James beheld transformed into mounds. Hairless, mammoth by comparison, they channeled beads of water to the valley in between, which swelled, shrank, swelled, and shrank in unison with his agitated breathing.

Shocked, and yet enthralled by this uncanny metamorphosis, James explored his bust with slender, trembling fingers, ravished by the rush their touch inspired—its force centrifugal, its axis further down where once had throbbed... Panic-stricken, he groped his modified crotch. Empty! No penis! No testicles, either! A groove had been supplanted, a slippery little slot, that—GOD!—must be the source of such outrageous excitation James forgot what he was missing to indulge what took its place.

How gross! I mean, it's rude the way this juts out like some prehistoric reptile, sleek and long and… Yuk, it's drooling! Feels like mucilage. Smells like bleach. And tastes like… seawater.

Jaime milked the shaft protruding through her nightgown to extract another sample from its contumacious tip. A kind of disembodied rapture seized the interloping organ—coaxing her to soothe, to pet, to stroke its swollen hood, and then to pause lest it erupt apace with…

… loins that clenched, imploding, nipples hardening like electrodes, sex their juice, Jim's hands like clamps that made the current flow throughout his body—shuddering, wracked by rapture—till he eased his pinch; the current stopped… yet pleasure did not cease, in fact it heightened once his fingers crept to unfamiliar tissue, probed its outer then its inner lips, encountered something pert, a fleshy button he could scarcely graze without its going haywire…

… like an independent spirit Jaime's phallus sprang erect, the merest tickle, just a touch had brought it back to full proportion, disproportion to the flabbergasted girl who feared its bent, who could not fathom what it must be like to house so huge an object. How could something so enormous enter something so petite? She made a fist. She tried to simulate the bounds of her vagina, introducing, then, the oil-slicked member, fingers spreading, breached. The organ infiltrated, snaked its way through flesh that seemed constricted yet permitted it to pass, to grease her palm, invade her grip, provoke an up and down massage that made for sheer exhilaration...

… that had played a dozen preludes in the thighs of him who quaked, who felt his body turn from flesh and bone to liquor, molten lava. Surging, James felt pores and privates ooze a flood of sweat and spim. A sense of floating buoyed his buxom figure…

… Jaime, fiercely fondling, spurred a climax so excessive spurting semen splashed her cheek—a creamy geyser of it, hot and dense and copious. She was startled. She was also overwhelmed by a superlative relief, at once ecstatic and deflating; what was pent-up now was pliant; what was eager to assail recoiled, determined to retreat, a fragile tortoise, head withdrawn inside its… reconfigured chamber; Jaime's lap resumed its female features.

James beheld his chest, its volume shrunken, hair obscuring skin once smooth and pale and bounteous, while the root beneath his fingers dangled limply, stout yet spent; his manhood docile now that dreams of Ms. Von Hagen seeped unstoppably—mixed with runoff from the shower— squandered sperm washed down the drain, his seed…

… her promise; Jaime's psyche bore the fruit of premonition. She withdrew both hands and closed the nightgown's flaps, regained composure, then pronounced out-loud her budding resolution:

"I'll choose him."

… no sooner spoken than her fianc�-to-be declared:

"I'll call her."

James and Jaime thus exchanged their first solemn vows.


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© r. muir