Lust Series (41)

Tease, he smiled. His hands trembled when he clutched her shoulders. His nose began to run and he pulled a handkerchief from his pocket. I knew from the first minute that you’ve been got to early. She’d never before seen a handkerchief in real life. When the interview ended she went to the refrigerator and picked from the lunch meat pack a slice of spiced ham. Poor people food, he pointed out. His housekeeper’s. He liked to watch girls eat. She spooned mayo straight from the jar into her mouth. But she wasn’t at all hungry and that frightened her. She hated to leave the avocado appliance. Air hung religiously around the ice maker. He pinched her bottom and elsewhere. Goodness what a morsel you are. The asinine bubbliness was in her head along with foam from the corner of the old accountant’s mouth, taste of cooked asparagus, which she disliked. She moved lazily over piled carpets ignoring gilded frames flashing gold at her from table tops. He escorted her into his study, then went out to change from his suit into a bathrobe. He showed her his left mannequin leg that he lifted gingerly onto the desktop. It did not match the pale right one threaded with occasional hair. He’d been run over in his driveway by his ex-wife. “Instead of braking, she hit the gas. I don’t believe it and neither do my lawyers.” Her eyes were riveted to the leg that wore a shoe, really quite masterful. She would sleep in that remarkable woman’s bed. The day, what she could see of it through purple drapes and Venetian blinds seemed perfectly still, an adverb afternoon.

Stephanie Dickinson has lived in Iowa, Wyoming, Texas, Louisiana and now in New York. Her work appears in Cream City Review, Green Mountain Review, Chelsea, Tiferet, African-American Review, Brooklyn Review, Fourteen Hills, among others. Her novel Half Girl, winner of the Hackney Award (Birmingham-Southern), is published by Spuyten Duyvil. She may be found at