I keep most of my flash fiction on a Tumblr blog because I really like the format for posting pictures and keeping drafts…and some of the photos I find inspiring are NSFW. 😉
I’m sharing a two recent favourites here, though, because…well, I’m a writer. Says so up there under the header. Also, I have about three gaming posts lined up and there should be some balance on this blog.
Also, I just like sharing my stories.
I’ve seen him five times over the past month, but this is the closest. Even from across the quad I’d recognise the line of his shoulders, though. The tilt of his head. The way his shoulder blades poke at the back of his t-shirt, the length of his torso. His butt. His stance. He has that way of standing, you know? It’s a statement and a challenge. He’s coiled. He’s kinetic energy waiting to be set free. The memory of that, his skin, the vibration of life and expectancy, tickles the centre of my palms.
God, he’s so close—I could almost reach out. I imagine I can smell him. The big yellow brick of Dial he has to pry away from the soap dish every morning. His cheap shaving cream. That weird shit he puts in his hair. I dunno what it’s for. I never figured it out.
Is he here for me? Should I say something?
Maybe he’s lost. Maybe that’s why I keep seeing him around campus, always in the same pose. It’s as if he’s forgotten something and is about to turn around to retrieve it. I’d like to believe it’s me. That he’s come back for me. That the whole facing away thing is just him being coy. He has that down pat. Sly little smiles that mean so much more than the crook of his mouth. Invitations that have to be read in the line of his brows, or a subtle lift of his chin.
Does he know I’m here? Is he playing me?
I thought I’d be over him by now, but every time I see him, I realise I’m not. It hurts. Not just in my chest, dead center—where my heart isn’t. My throat aches, there’s a niggle behind my eyes, something like a burn, and—damn it—my whole being just feels strapped. I’m a bowstring. One snap and I’ll break. That’s how much I miss him. Still.
Because, you know, I’m standing here imagining I can smell his soap.
That’s all it is, though. My imagination. Truth is, I don’t know what he’s looking for or why he’s here. I’ve not the courage to ask, either. Not again. Not after the first time I reached out to tap his shoulder, fingers trembling, throat so tight I didn’t think I’d be able to talk. I don’t want that to be my last memory of him. I’d rather try to figure out what that shit was he put in his hair. And I kinda wish he’d stop appearing like this. I want to believe he doesn’t realise how much it hurts.
But even as I vow not to, I know I’m going to try again. Because even if my hand passes through him, catching nothing but a tickle that could have been stirred air, a breeze, it’d be worse knowing that I hadn’t tried—one last time—to tell his ghost I’m sorry.
“Stop smiling like that.”
My whisper is the very definition of furious. I’m trying so hard not to smile and there’s Michael, grinning, tucking his nose in against mine. He’s moving his lips, I know he is. Whispering things I can’t hear. He’s teasing me, riling me up. Intent on either making me laugh or swoon.
“I need a little more intensity from you, Alex.” The photographer doesn’t sound impatient, yet.
Intensity. Smiles aren’t intense. I’m supposed to be commanding—a touchy broody. Possessive? I own this man. The one now quirking his brows at me…well, just the one, on the side the photographer can’t see.
“Stop,” I hiss-whine.
The breath of his laughter tickles my lips and a new struggle begins. Keeping my shoulders still and my throat locked. I really want to laugh as well. The whole situation is torturous and ridiculous. Michael standing there in nothing but a collar and ink while I hold his chain. Leash…whatever. I’m sure in circles where people play these games there’s a word for this chain, and a way to hold it. A posture that commands—broodingly and intensely.
I bite the inside of my cheek. The flexion along my jaw will look good for the camera. Okay, I can’t do intense. What about possessive? How does one possess another? Oh…he’s naked. I can claim him with my eyes. All of him.
Which means looking down.
I’ve seen him naked a hundred times. He’s seen me naked a hundred and one. Because Michael has a knack for staying on top of things, which is why it’s so amusing he should be the one at the end of this leash. I’m going to call it a leash. If I lean in a little, feign a nose bump and just happened to catch the fine fabric of these pants against his dick, maybe I could tease a reaction out of him. I’d never know if it was friction or desire—but a reaction would be nice. To be the one pulling the chain.
Yeah, we’re going to call it a chain.
I tug it a little and our noses collide. He has that crease in his cheek, the one where a dimple would be if his smiles tended toward coy. Michael isn’t shy with his games, though. Nope. Not him—
“Perfect, Alex. Can you tug the chain again? Yeah, just like that.”
The whirring chitter of the camera forms a soothing counterpoint to the sudden tension snapping between us. Michael’s smile is changing and his other brow has joined the first.
“Damn, Michael, that expression is perfect. Can you hold it?” The photographer is practically panting over there.
And I can see why. The look Michael is giving me now? Oh. My. God.
Don’t look down, Alex. Do not look down.
He’s filling down there—I can feel him against my thigh—and that tension? That’s him contemplating the fact he’s hard and wondering if it’s the chain, the fabric of my pants or just me.
I tug the chain again and sneak my hand around behind his bare ass. “Not sure if you should be smiling quite so wide, Michael.”
I can smile now, though. With him leaning into me as if I own him? Definitely my turn to smile.
Both of these stories were written for the Monday Flash Fics group on Facebook and were originally posted on Tumblr. You can visit other interpretations of the pictures from the group site. You can read more of my fics on Tumblr or by visiting the Free Reads (under the books tab) in the menu above.