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One Man Woman
I knew as soon as I saw John that I'd love him forever. I still do. Love him that is.
It's funny the things you'll remember in retrospect. Like going to see his mother. We'd pass the trannies in Soho and he'd scoff.
"Hypocrite," I'd call him.
"What?" he'd ask. "I know who I am."
"It's not a matter of knowing who you are."
"That you, Johnny?" his mom would ask.
"Well, it certainly isn't my father," John would say. What is it about gay men and their mothers? I stay the hell away from mine. Then again.
"Mom, you remember Andy."
"Oh, yes. You're nice friend," she'd smile. "Hello, Andy."
"Hi, Mrs. Wellington. How are you?"
"Just fine, just fine. Did you boys have a nice walk down?"
"Yeah," John would sigh. I'd shoot him a look. A don't mention the transvestites in front of your mother, please look. He'd stay quiet and mind his tongue. His mom would say that we simply must stay for dinner and to make ourselves at home. He really was a better person when he was around his mother. Like a little boy sometimes.
He was nothing like that when we met. At a club, of all places. Such a pretty boy. Cleanly shaven, not a hair out of place. Everything tailored to his physique. What girl could say no to that? We went home together that night. I laughed him out of his clothes. I, however, remained clad. From the waist down anyway. After he came, he passed out on my sofa. I slept alone in my room. When I woke, he was replaced by a slip of paper.
Thanks. - John 212-395-0375
I pushed him from my mind and went to work. Florist. Guilty by trade or genetics. You decide.
Upon returning home, I was brought to my knees. I could still smell him. I waited a terribly lengthy 37 seconds before fishing out his phone number and dialing.
"Christ, you sound like a woman over the phone," he told me.
"Yeah. I guess that makes me the bitch," I said.
"Guess so," he returned. We made plans for the following evening.
After two weeks, I met his mother for the first time.
After a month, I had a key to his apartment. It was more than I expected.
At the time, I was on a month-to-month with a guy who owned a bar off of Christopher Street. I only had one key and was expecting to be evicted at a moment's notice anyway. He was onto my "curious behavior," and I'm relatively sure my kind wasn't appreciated. A few girls started asking when they'd get to meet my new beau.
"I don't know." I said.
"You afraid one of us would steal him away?" Lena, my boss, asked.
"Certainly not. I just don't think he'd be too keen on the idea, that's all," I explained. "I'm about as girly as he gets." We al had a good, long laugh over that. Ha ha.
Sometimes I would sneak into his apartment while John was sleeping. Just to be there while he was that vulnerable. He wasn't a "stay the night" kind of guy. It's not that he didn't want to let me in. It was just in small increments. On his terms.
We had a dinner date planned for our six month and, unbeknownst to your truly, my better half stopped on the way home to pick up some flowers.
"Shit," I whispered. I told John I worked for my father. Obviously not true. "Lena, I have to go to the bathroom, could you watch the counter?"
"Uh, sure," she said.
I ducked into the walk in refrigerator. I heard his muffled voice. Lena came in to get some roses and said, "I thought you were in the bathroom."
"I was. I'm just checking for something in here." She stared at me. "What?"
"You're kind of standing right in front of what I need to get."
"Oh, sorry." I moved.
After John left, Lena returned and said, "Are you okay? You're acting oddly."
"Peachy keen," I said. "Listen, my shift is done in about ten minutes. Think I can knock off early?"
"Sure," she said. "Be my guest."
"You're a doll," I told her. "See you tomorrow."
I took back alleys and ran all the way home. I went up the back stairs through the bar and jumped in the bathroom for the quickest shower of my life. I towel dried my hair into adequately arranged bedhead and tossed on a shirt and some trousers. Just in time for his knock, knock, knock.
"Hello, dearest," I kissed him hello.
"Hey." He presented his offering.
"Oh! You shouldn't have."
"Yeah, I know," he smiled.
We had a splendid dinner and went back to his place. There was a fumbling of clothes. I grabbed his cock. He reached for mine.
"Ah-ah." I said. "Need I handcuff you?"
"C'mon," he whispered. "You're the biggest tease I know."
"I have no idea what you mean," I lied.
"Like hell. Not to contrast and compare, but I've slept with more men than you and I can count on both our hands. And you are the only one I would go through this shit for. It's been how long? Six months? Aren't I entitled to a small part of you?"
"I think you've had a rather large part of me already. About six inches deep."
"Not the same," he said.
"It's not my thing. I'm sorry," I apologized.
"Well, it is my thing." I was surprised. He'd never pushed the issue before. "Listen, I'm not going to force you."
"I think maybe we need a break," I said slowly.
"Yeah." he agreed. "Maybe."
And I left.
I felt awful about it. We didn't talk about it or anything else for that matter for a week. I felt like I would die of neglect. So, in the middle of the night, not wanting to be away from him for one minute longer, I let myself into the apartment. Asleep in his bed was a man who was not John.
I went home.
And I did what any other ex/stalker would do in my position. I moved into the apartment below his. I tortured myself by sitting by my open window and listening to them talk. I lit a cigarette and heard the beginnings of a savagely hard fuck. I couldn't move. I didn't move. Not until the cigarette had burned so much it singed my fingers. I cursed loudly and put it out on my hardwood floor.
I went out very little the days following. It wasn't until I had tired of Chinese food and realized my milk had become an unrecognizable life form that I left for any prolonged duration. I went to the delicatessen on the corner to get milk and fruit. I'm sure I looked haggard and wretched, so my heart fell when, on the way to my front door, John saw me.
"Andy?" he barely squeaked. I didn't even look up.
I unlocked my door and closed it behind me. I put my groceries away to his incessant banging.
"Andy! What the fuck? Open the door!" he bellowed.
Ten minutes of this. I leaned my face to the door frame and said loudly enough to sound meaningful, "Go away."
"Fuck you!" he said. "It's been over a week since I've seen you and you just move into my building without a word? What the hell's the matter with you? And now you're just going to sit in there and ignore me?"
"I can wait out here as long as you want. I don't care."
I didn't answer.
"Jesus Christ, Andy, open the fucking door!"
I knew he didn't want that. He thought he did, but he didn't. I wanted to open the door. But as soon as I did, I knew it would be over.
Tentative, I opened the door.
"Finally. Jesus Christ, Andy, you're such a." He looked me in the face. He looked at my clothes. "Is Andy. I mean, is he here?"
"No," I said. "She's not," and closed the door.
A few days ago, I tried the key. It didn't work. He changed the lock, I guess. Maybe he even moved, who knows? I didn't mean to lie. I knew who and what I was. What could I do? What do you do when the one person you love wants the person you can never be?
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