The Story Left Untold

This posting drought needs to end.  I’ve really been distracted lately.

Okay, well in honor of Every Avenue’s new CD coming out today (thank you miss sunflowers for the reminder), I am playing The Story Left Untold, and catching up on an untold story of my own.

Some of you may recall my intermittent story entries, which have been on a two month hiatus, and some of you have gently nudged me to continue them.  So to catch everyone up to speed before I continue, I thought it would be nice to post all of my past entries together.  Here they are, beginning with the most recent.

—————————————

Meanwhile, her spurned companion stalked the coastline, tracking their hoove prints by moonlight.  His thighs ached from miles of walking.  The bottoms of his feet were caked with sand.  Nevertheless, he pressed on.

Agonizing thoughts raced through his mind.  The scenarios grew increasingly painful.

Where had he taken her?  Had she gone willingly?  No, that was not possible.  She must be terrified.  Oh God, I hope she is still alive.

At last he spotted the torch light, and the horse.  She could not be far!  Wind filled his lungs as he sprinted up the staircase, desperate to deliver her from danger.

—————————————

He led her to a spacious room filled with clothing and jewelry.  There they were greeted by a female attendant.  “Welcome to the costume room,” she said cheerfully.  “Please try on whatever you like.”

She had never seen such a rich variety of apparel.  Clothes of every color, style, and material lined the aisles.  Then there was the jewelry section, with the finest Tiffany’s creations displayed on velvet mats beneath glass casing.  A dizzying selection of shoes adorned the wall.  And beside them, a rack of vintage masks.

The stranger took a seat and watched in amusement as she tried on outfit after outfit, asking his opinion on each.  Before long, the dressing room looked like it had been hit by a tornado.  At last, her eyes fell upon the perfect dress.  It was blush pink, made of the softest silk her hands had ever felt.  A Tiffany’s pearl necklace made for an eye-catching melange.

The dressing room door swung open.  Out stepped an angelic figure; a slice of Heaven in high heels.

She floated on air towards him.  After making a full turn, her hands fell to her hips.

“So, what do you think?” she inquired.

He leaned forward to get a better look.  “I think it looks great on you,” he said.

“Really?” she purred, biting her lip just a little.  “Now it’s your turn.”

He quickly picked out a black tuxedo with a white tie and a pink corsage.  It matched her outfit. 

Finally, they each chose a mask.  He chose a wolf; hers was a fox.  Their costumes were now complete.

“Shall we proceed to the foyer?” he asked, extending his hand.  She slid her fingers across his palm.  They waved goodbye to the attendant, and off they went.

—————————————-

At the top of the staircase, a magnificent palace loomed above them.  Its white limestone walls dominated the picturesque landscape.  The windows glowed with light, and flickered with the shadows of those inside.  A steeple made for a stoic crest.  Perched atop the plateau, and the sea, it was an architectural wonder. 

The base of the palace featured a sprawling courtyard.  There lay a scene that would have made Dionysus marvel with delight.  Dozens of guests (all in costume) milled around picnic tables lit with torches, as waiters weaved through the crowd carrying food and refreshments.  A live band played from a stage. There were burlesque dancers, and jugglers.  Trapeze artists and tumblers.  A woman wearing a boa, and a man who breathed fire.  And a clown.

She gazed out in awe at this spectacle.  Feeling out of place, she clung to the stranger’s arm as he led her through the fray.  Soon they were at the steps of the palace.

“Good evening, sir!” said the man at the palace door.  He turned to her.  “I see you have brought a guest with you?”

“I have,” the stranger responded.

“Well then.  The more the merrier,” smiled the doorman.  He bowed and gestured inside.  “Please, come in, and make yourself comfortable.”

The palace was brightly lit, and filled with the most elegant decorations.  Statues and fine paintings adorned every room and hallway.  Many of the paintings were of the dead, but the palace was very much alive.  Everywhere she looked, costumed guests were loitering, walking, chatting, laughing. 

The stranger led her down a spacious marble hallway.  As they continued, she could hear the distinct sound of violin music.  It grew louder and more urgent with every step.

At last the hallway opened up into a foyer, girded with railing.  An enormous chandelier hung over a ballroom dancefloor on the story below.  Peering down from the railing, she saw rows of masked couples stepping to the rhythm of a heated violin.  It was a style of dancing she had never seen before.

Abruptly, the music stopped.  Applause erupted from the foyer.

“What type of dance was that?” she whispered to the stranger.

“It’s called the Paso Doble,” he answered quietly, staring out at the dancefloor.  “It is a French dance with the character of a Spanish bullfight.  Not for the faint of heart.” 

He turned to her.  “Would you like to go down there?”

She nodded. 

“Okay,” he said.  “But first, you’ll need to follow me.”

——————————————

The sea breeze gushed through her hair as she and the stranger rode for miles down the beach. 

As dusk fell, they approached a cliff that towered several stories over the oceanside.  Soon she detected the faint sound of music and laughter.

The man pulled the stallion to a trot as they neared the base of the cliff, and jumped down.  Amidst the dense vegetation, she could make out a granite staircase winding up to the top.  The stranger clapped his hands twice.  Suddenly, torch lamps came to life along the staircase.  The cliff glowed with a zig zag of scattered firelight.

After tying the horse one of the torch lamps, the man came over to help her down.

She lost her balance, and fell into his arms with a scream.  “Whoa there missy!” said the stranger with a hearty laugh, as he lowered her to the sand. 

Everything seemed so surreal.  She wondered if he was upset with her.  Oh well, it’s probably better to end it before he finds out, she thought.  She actually felt a bittersweet sense of relief.  Of course, it did not hurt that she now found herself alone with a handsome stranger.

“Where are we?” she asked.

“Follow me,” he said, as he led her up the staircase.

——————————————–

Waves sloshed across two pairs of feet as he chased her across an ocean sunset.  The faint sound of laughter resonated from the shore of the beach. 

She squealed as he caught up to her and pulled her down on top of him in the sand.  Her laughter was uncontrollable.  He grinned up at her, proud of his pursuit.

Catching her breath, her eyes fell upon his.  For a lingering moment, their gazes locked.  Then, their bodies followed suit.  As the sun descended, two intertwined silhouettes writhed passionately in the sand.

Suddenly, she looked up.   A hundred yards ahead, she could make out a man riding a horse down the beach.  The man looked to be in his late thirties, tan, and in visibly good shape.  He rode shirtless, and wore a dark brimmed stetson hat.  The stallion beneath him glowed with a ghostly shade of white.

“Good evening!” he called out, as he pulled his stallion to a trot.  It almost seemed as if he had been expecting them.

Somewhat embarrased, they climbed to their feet and dusted the sand off their clothes.  A brief introduction followed.

“Hey, I was just on my way to a party at friend’s place not far from here,” the rider said, gesturing with his hand.  “It’s a casual affair.  No invitation needed.  Would you care to join me?”

The man seemed nice enough.  He offered her his hand, and helped her onto the white stallion.  

The man gave her companion an apologetic look.  “Sorry buddy, there ain’t enough room on this horse for you.”  He jerked the reigns, and they took off down the beach.  She clung to the man’s waist for dear life.  She barely managed to hold on.

Meanwhile, he watched helplessly as they faded into the distance.  There was nothing he could do.

——————————————-

Tires squealed as they jumped in the car and made off like bandits.  Moments later they were back on the highway.  Relaxing into his seat, he eased his death grip on the wheel.  She breathed a sigh of relief.  The danger had passed.

She rolled down the window.  The wind thundered over her soaking wet hair, twisting and entangling, until long wisps danced around her headrest.  Her left arm rested on the sill; her eyes fixated on the countryside.  The tinge of guilt creeping over her was all too familiar.

At last, she mustered the courage to look over at him.  His hair, his face, his neck glistened from the lingering moisture.  Not to mention his drenched t-shirt, which gripped his upper body like a second skin.  “Where do you wanna go now?” he asked. 

With the sun sinking low in the evening sky, they veered into the fast lane and made for the beach.

———————————————-

They spent the afternoon cruising around the city, leaving an odiferous trail of perfume, cologne, and altoids.  Little did they know, the devil himself had come along for the ride.   Or so thought a golden-aged convenience store clerk, a man who had earned a reputation as a no-nonsense defender of traditional values.

The store clerk glanced up from his stool as they strolled in.  Their unadorned ring fingers told him all he needed to know.

The clerk took pride in keeping a close watch on sinners in his store.  He leaned forward and tilted his chin down, so that his thick reading glasses would not obstruct his view of the security camera monitor.  He watched closely as the devil’s minions shuffled about the store aimlessly, taking all too much pleasure in each other’s company.  Basking in their sin.  They would someday pay a price for their lust, he assured them silently.

Then, right before his very eyes, the gates of hell swung open.  The clerk stared in disbelief as the two love birds looked around to see if anyone was watching, and then disappeared into the one-person restroom at the back of the store.  The stool toppled to the floor.

Inside, she elevated herself onto the sink.  A mischievous smile crept across her face.   Her eyes coaxed him closer, until her legs surrounded his waist.  One hand caressed the back of his jaw.  The other lifted up his shirt, glided around his torso, and made its way ever so gently down the small of his back.  Her lips were not nearly as gentle.

“I can tell you like being in control,” he said in between gasps for air. 

“Oh yeah? What gave it away?” she replied, eyeing his lips like a queen gazing down upon kneeling servants.  The truth was she did like being in control.  Just not all the time.

Boom.  Boom.  Boom. 

“I know you’re in there!  Don’t make me break this thing down!” said a voice from outside. 

Startled, he looked up at the door.  “Crap, we’ve gotta go,” he told her.  The pounding grew louder.

“Just one more,” she whispered breathlessly.  Before he could protest, she seized him with such urgency that he nearly fell forward and pinned her against the mirror.  He grabbed ahold of the sink to brace himself. 

Suddenly the sink gave way.  Water spewed from the wall as they both fell to the floor.

“Shit!” he yelled, as he tried to shield his face from the water.  He stumbled to his feet and helped her up.  Leaning against the door, he turned and grabbed her by the shoulders.  

“When I open this door, I want you to follow right behind me and then run for the exit as fast you can.  Don’t wait up for me.  Are you ready?”  She nodded, water dripping from her matted hair.

The door flung open.  He charged head-first into the clerk, sending both men tumbling into a rack of merchandise.  Bags of chips and candy rained down on them.  From beneath the snack food avalanche, he felt two small hands grab his shoe and drag him into the aisle.  It was her. She helped him to his feet and together they made a mad dash for the door.  As they raced past bewildered customers, a fading voice behind them called out, “stop those hooligans!  Somebody call the police!”

Once outside, they didn’t even pause to catch their breath.  They just kept running.

——————————————-

Sitting beside him on the park bench, she tore off a little piece of bread and tossed it.  A dozen mallards feverishly raced to the floating meal.  The water rippled with the sound of quacks and splashing.

“Can I tell you something?”  he asked innocently. 

She looked around and waited for him to continue.

“You’re a much more aggressive kisser than I expected. At first I was a little taken aback, but then it got to be quite a turn on.”

She’d heard this critique before.  “Well now you know.  You might wanna brace yourself next time,” she advised.

“I’ll try to remember that!” he laughed.  “Your lips should come with a warning label.”  He gently brushed back her hair and planted a soft kiss on her neck, just below the ear. 

This time she couldn’t help but blush.  Her eyes closed as she savored the warmth of his tongue.  If only he knew.

——————————————–

The morning sun streamed into the upstairs bedroom.  On the coffee table sat a bottle of Patrón, still three-quarters full.  Keeping its company were eight bottles of Corona, each with an eighth of lime at the bottom; two empty bottles of Dos Equis, both containing Cuban cigar butts; and finally, a can of Tecate.  Una noche loca.

His bloodshot eyes squinted at the intruding light, as he surveyed the aftermath.  His eyes shifted to his stomach, where her head was resting.  She was still asleep.  Her body was positioned at a right angle to his, with her legs curled up by his side.  To his disappointment, they both were still fully clothed.

Downstairs, a scruffy man in his mid-twenties entered through the front door.  He strolled into the kitchen and poured himself a bowl of cheerios, which he proceeded to eat while leaning against the peninsula countertop that bisected the room.  Between bites, he hummed to music playing from his earphones, while pausing periodically to yell the more emphatic verses. 

Hmm-uh-duh-duh-hmm, sing it from the heart, sing it til you’re nuts, sing it out for the ones that’ll hate your guts!

The man used his sleeve to wipe away milk that had dribbled down his chin during his brief vocal performance.  He looked up to see his brother leading an unknown guest down the stairway.

“Yo yo yo, what’s up little bro!”  Little bro rolled his eyes.

“Looks like you finally got a girlfriend,” he teased.  “I was willing to bet money you were gay.”

“Look who’s talking,” he shot back.

“Hey, I am single by choice,” the older brother retorted.  “You should loosen up that string around his balls,” he said to the girl, “he’s not getting enough blood to his brain.”  She gave a quick smile and tried not to blush.

“By the way, I drank all your shit,” the younger brother confessed as they were walking out the door.

“I’m sure it took the whole fridge to get you laid!”  he yelled back, as the door closed.  The older brother laughed.  “Lucky motherfucker,” he muttered to himself, shaking his head.  He put his headphones back on and returned to his cereal.

Outside, the car crackled down the gravel drive and onto the backroad.  A blue-skied Saturday lay before them.  It held boundless opportunities for leisure.  And where one finds leisure, one often finds the ingredients for love.

He threw her a sheepish look.  “We drank quite a bit last night.  Are you hungover?” he asked.  “No, I feel fine,” she said.  “Well, if you start feeling bad, let me know and we’ll pull over,” he offered.  His concern was appreciated.

He paused for a moment, and then continued.  “Cause I just had this car cleaned, and I’ll be damned if I gotta clean it again this weekend.”  He laughed loudly.

How sweet, she thought.

————————————————

On the outskirts of town, two headlights carved gently through the night.  Soon gravel crackled underneath their tires.  The muffled sound of indie rock music announced their arrival as they glided up the narrow drive.

“Don’t worry, nobody’s home,” he assured.  Always the gentlemen, he hustled around the front of the car to get her door.  A gesture that never failed to impress her.  Just one more reason to feel guilty, she thought.

They walked around to the side door, where he pulled a key from a small crevice beneath the exterior faucet.  Once inside, they made their way up the staircase to the upstairs bedroom.  What lay inside was a bachelor’s paradise.   A lava lamp glowed from a desk below a poster featuring a voluptuous bikini model.  On the other side of the room was a love seat, positioned strategically between a stereo system, a flat screen, and a mini fridge.  A king-sized mattress covered by a neatly folded blanket was sprawled across the hardwood floor.  And, of course, a stripper pole.

“Go ahead and make yourself comfortable,” he invited, nodding at the couch.  He strolled over to the mini-fridge.  “Can I offer you a drink?”

————————————————-

But something wasn’t right.  They both glanced out the window.  Great, he thought to himself.  Who on earth could be walking their dog at this time of night?

“What’s wrong?” he asked with a look of concern, trying his best to seem oblivious.  He rested his hand on her thigh for comfort.  “Let’s go,” she said, unamused.

He slid back into his seat and cranked the engine.  Sometimes good things have to wait. 

“I’ve got another place in mind,” he offered.  He flashed a boyish grin.  “It’s not far.”

“Sure,” she replied casually.  She didn’t have the heart to tell him.  Not yet.  Besides, his heart was fluttering.  And so was hers.

————————————————–

“This is a first for both of us,” he said.  The digits on the dashboard clock stood still, as if frozen by their stares.  Finally, it blinked.

“We really shouldn’t . . .” she started to whisper, but his lips had already beat her to it.

2 thoughts on “The Story Left Untold

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