i let this come off my hands without really reading it over much again, or editing. it probably needs an edit since not all of it was written with an equal amount of care, but i preferred getting it off as is. it's shorter than intended and could've been lengthened.
When the answering machine took over, I was still lying on my stomach, forehead on pillow. The uncomfortableness meant nothing to me. My neck weighed too much to lift, was too strung up to let my head fall. The voice from the other end of the world stabbed at the air to alleviate it of the pressure, but the atmosphere was a sludge that melted back into place after every sharp note puckered at it uselessly. Its efforts were noted, however. Every word it let fall rung an echo in the back of my thoughts, but by the time it reached me I could make out only the faintest. But even the faintest grew and before long was growing in strength, taking advantage, shoving. Did it want in? I let out a groan and for the first time in hours felt life, though it left from my mouth. With the body off guard, my head shook free, broke its shackles, and suddenly my god everything was coming back to me how long was I asleep, or rather more importantly, very much more importantly, because hold on a second. That voice was rolling the erotic off of her tongue as if they were cigarettes. Neatly packed, rehearsed phone sex. What a treat, she had obviously been preparing this for an occasion.
Now somewhat sobered, earlier parts of the conversation pushed their way back into my thoughts without much resistance on my part: sundresses, the removal of them, I had definitely heard something about sundresses... I wasn't really thinking about any other details actually, my mind stopped there. I had a fondness for sundresses matched only by my fetish for female underwear. Accordingly. Ah. A certain vigor returned to me, one that took painstaking difficulty to rope in by my own hands and I thanked the sultry voice silently. Even so. Even so. This wasn't my bed and this wasn't my phone call, but I could not bring myself to feel guilty about overhearing. I sat up, on my knees, and took a look at the answering machine I had been ignoring until now. Only fifty seconds had passed according to the recording time, but somehow the caller had already made it to second base. Where was I before this? But I only need look at my reflection and serve up a glazed gaze to remember the events that had brought me here. 15-Love, you piece of shit. In the other room, my brother's shower was still where it had been hours ago when I had fallen down to hopefully just die. I had disappointed myself, but maybe he died instead. Part of me hoped so.
Taking advantage of his absence, I brought my attention back to his loose-lipped paramore. With no second thoughts to throw aside, my hand threw itself out and cupped the receiver, cherished gift it was. I brought it close to my face. "Wait, I'm here. Did I almost miss you?" There was a silence. A giggle.
"Hello A," her voice slowed when she heard my voice. I could feel her smile. I was not A. She did not realize. I tried to think of a response, but instead used the energy to merge my free palm into my sex. A preparatory act. I maintained silence for an overbearing length of time, hoping she would mercifully pick it up and cradle it in her arms. But nothing. I realized it was my turn. All I could muster was reiteration: "hello."
"Did you just get home? How much did you hear?"
"All of it." I half-lied.
She giggled again, bubbly and childishly. Silence followed. It was enough to make me regret becoming a participant. I did my best to act the part, "Where were we?" Here I go again, further shouldering the responsibility. Will I have to turn her on too? Is this how it works? Rolling the words off in a way I had grown used to by now (enchanted no longer), she queried what position her legs were in. Apart, one up, the other down, maybe one is-- wait, is she flexible enough in person to put one behind her head? Is this a joke to her? A fantasy? I had no interest in the fantastic and I wasn't in the mood for this. I grabbed onto my crotch instinctively, but I knew it had been shut down long before I had even woken up. Kicking the call out from under my own legs, I found my voice again and held on while it bit and hissed, "I'm sorry, but can this wait for later? I have to go. I really am sorry."
A giggle did not follow. Awkward. When she spoke again, she almost sounded hurt, "A, you were the one who-"
"We can continue in a bit. It's my dog, I'll be back in a second." I let down the phone into the receiver. My own expectations. I only even half-provided an excuse. I knew if I waited, I'd be trapped as a participant. For the first time since I heard her voice, I found myself starting to feel guilty. It would be another half hour until I remembered that my brother's apartment did not have a dog. It was sometime around then that my twin exited the bathroom, dressed. He sat down next to me. It was in an assuring way. Almost arrogant. He flipped over his palms and showed me his hands.
He looked thoughtfully to the side for a second before coming back to me. "Are you going to be staying long? I don't mean to pressure you."
"It's not good if I linger."
"I just mean, I miss you." I noted the depth of his voice in comparison to my own.
I had no response. Though I did. I felt an intense urge to grab his throat. To open my palms, place them around his neck, strengthen the grip, cut off his circulation. My imagination was draining, though, and the image I saw was almost lifeless. He wouldn't fight back. He would just stare, accepting, playing the role he had been cast in years ago. He would sit there and take it. He would only approve after all, these hands were ours. "Do you have a girlfriend?" It fell out.
He chuckled and his tongue slid itself over his teeth, "I don't know. I guess. I don't know. It sounds cold, but I don't even know if I care. Maybe it's selfish to care at all." It was then that he fell backwards on the bed. I turned to look at his face and he gave me a smile. I fell back too. All the same really. I couldn't bring myself to smile. But I couldn't remember why. I stared at the stucco ceiling and the amorphous shapes, masses blending into one another, truly they were my days and it was in this that I realized it was a poor metaphor. Nothing in there looks like me, or even feels as I do. So I stared into a Just-a-Ceiling. If they weren't there, though, where were my days? I tried to think back to how I arrived here, but my thoughts turned to sundresses.