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jax.jpg
Art by W. Jack Savage 2014

Jax

 

 

by D. Kirk

 

 

I held the phone away from my ear, listening as this bitch yammered on and on.

 

"First I had to wait like forever to get the bartender's attention and then I totally had to wait forever again for him to bring me my drink and then finally he says 'five bucks' and I was like, oh my god, it's gone!"

 

I stared at her driver's license again. Jacquelyn Harper, brown hair, green eyes, 5'4". Sorority girl for sure. Slumming it in The Brickhouse so she could tell her friends how alternative she was. Hoping Daddy never found out and cut off her trust fund. I could picture her tight ass running for the toilet to puke up bits of salad and light beer. That's probably how she ended up leaving her purse in the bathroom in the first place. What a twat.

 

"So then I was like, oh shit, I've lost my wallet."

 

"Ya, you said that." My head was pounding now. Jesus, how'd I even get home this morning? "Hey, so do you want this thing back or not?"

 

"Of course I do. Do you think you could bring it to me because I've got this paper due tomorrow and I really need to get on it."

 

"You're fuckin' kidding me right?"

 

"About what?"

 

"I'm doing you a favor by even calling you and now you want me to bring this stupid thing to you? No. Come and get it. Or don't and I'll keep the cash. It'll be in my mailbox. 9144 SE Alder. I plan to be asleep all day so don't fuckin' wake me up when you get here."

 

I hung up. Glad to not hear her voice again. My buddy was right last night, I'm an asshole.

 

"Dude, you look ridiculous with that purse, just take the cash and toss the rest."

 

"I don't know man, losing your wallet sucks. I lost mine last year and it took forever to replace everything. I couldn't get in a bar for three weeks without my ID."

 

"Don't be an asshole dude, come on, toss the purse. Those chicks at the bar are waiting for us. I get the blonde this time, k?"

 

He was right, I shoulda just chucked it. What do I care if it's a pain in the ass to get a new driver's license, right? If someone is stupid enough to leave their purse next to the toilet in a bar, then they probably deserve to spend half a day at the DMV getting a new license.

 

"Holy hellhole," I muttered when the intense morning sun hit my face at the front door. Why did I get up this early to begin with? Water, I had needed water. I stuffed the fabric purse filled with chapstick, a whistle, Altoids and a surprising pack of Djarum blacks into my mailbox with her wallet. Maybe I should keep the cloves as payment. No, I just needed water and some Tylenol, I thought, grabbing the Sunday paper on my way back in.

 

My bedroom was dark when I returned, but I could still see a white bra on the floor next to my favorite Ramone's shirt. Slipping under crumpled blankets, I pulled a brunette with tiny titties and a heart shaped ass closer, smelling hair spray and morning after. I racked my foggy brain for a name. I-rene? I-ndia? I remembered she tasted of mint gum and sour wine.

 

I woke later in the middle of a fucked up dream where I was being chased down the street by a tanning salon punch card. My bed now empty and white bra, gone. The front door of the apartment slammed, jarring me even more awake. Ah, the brunette had left. Now I could read my morning paper in peace. Sometimes when they slept over, they'd chew out loud and read the Life & Style section until they got bored and went home.

 

Taking a leak, I stared down at the toilet remembering the chick with the purple elephant purse. The kind of purse you buy at stores with "water pipes" and brass Buddhas on Haight Street in San Francisco. I could picture her now wearing a Chico State sweatshirt and a scrunchie with a bunch of others taking her picture in front of the methadone clinic. Then they'd head down to McDonald's for a diet coke and rollerblade through Golden Gate Park.

 

I headed to the kitchen for a hangover breakfast and coffee. Instead I found a note on the table next to my empty carton of eggs. Damnit.

 

Thanks for last night,

 

call me,

 

Isabelle

 

Hmm, her white cotton bra was more of an Amy. Last night, rolling on a condom with black painted nails, she was trying too hard to be an Izzy.

 

A perky knock at the door pulled me out of my thoughts. What are the chances brunette was back with groceries for breakfast? I'd guess slim to none.

 

"Oh hi, ugh, I'm sorry, yeah you said not to wake you. I'm Jax. You called me this morning about my purse?"

 

Standing at the door in front of me was definitely not tiny titty Izzy but instead a woman wearing a braless Dead Kennedy's shirt with low cut sweatpants.

 

"Yeah, I was awake," I said, pulling myself up taller and pushing my hair back. Jacquelyn Harper, 5'4" had really green eyes and a dangerous rack to be bouncing around with such a thin t-shirt.

 

She was also holding a take-out box in front of her.

 

"Um, you sounded pretty hung over this morning and I wanted to thank you for saving my purse from the garbage can, so I brought you brunch from Oy Vey. I work there during the week. I hope you eat eggs, cuz I got you a ham and cheese omelet. And here's a coffee and a little mimosa hair of the dog. It's my personal Jax breakfast, hangover cure guaranteed."

 

"Wow, yeah, cheers. I'm starving."

 

"Well, thanks again for taking the time to call me. I'm...I'm sorry I woke you after you told me not to. I'm a bit frazzled today. It was a rough night and I haven't slept yet."

 

She followed that with a knowing wink and something stirred in me. Why was this damn chick messing with my fuzzy head on a Sunday morning? My hands fumbled at the mailbox, pulling her purse out, trying not to stare at her killer smile again. Had I seen this girl before or had I just stared at her driver's license picture too long last night? Man, she's gorgeous.

 

"Thanks," she said politely, "that was really nice of you to go out of your way like that. Not many people at the Brickhouse would've done the same."

 

"Yeah, no prob." I stood there like a fuckin' idiot trying to think of a way to keep her talking. My mind kept spinning the same thing in my head over and over again. Jacquelyn Harper 16610 Schuyler Street, works at Oy Vey. Jacquelyn Harper 16610 Schuyler Street, works at Oy Vey.

 

With one last killer smile, she handed me the food, then turned to head back to her car with the purple elephants slung over her shoulder. That's when I saw the top of her red thong peeking out from low slung sweats. The skin around the red lace was flawless, not a tan line in sight, firm. She winked again while opening the car door. Yeah, her face was every bit a Jacquelyn with killer green eyes, but her ass, well her ass was hop on and I'll have a whiskey shot please.

 

Her ass was a Jax.







strainedperformance.jpg
Art by Steve Cartwright 2016

Strained Performance

 

by Diana Kirk

 

 

She had ordered the spicy fish soup heavy with paprika. He had ordered the lamb. Mrs.  Nicholaa agreed to meet for supper at the Pushkin cafe one week prior. She wore the green dress with red lace around the collar, as he’d requested. More garnet in candlelight. Rustier than blood. His fingers had itched to feel it’s delicate webbing warmed by her plumped scented skin.

 

After dinner was finished, after she had picked at every crumb on the linen tablecloth, they walked along the riverfront. The two had no need for conversation once matters of finances had been settled at dinner. A sexual contract agreed upon point by point. Coinage exchanged. Their walk merely a necessity en route to his windowless room at the top floor of 453 Marine.

 

Tonight on this warm Autumn evening it was bustling with fishermen hawking salmon and tuna. Mrs. Nicholaa mentioned nothing of her favorite recipe using ground nuts rolled inside fillets. The conversation would have been strained above the cacophony of circling seagulls. Animals begging for a taste of slaughtered sea fattened fish, a bit of roe perhaps dropping amongst planks on a dock, a gutted eye oozing over the edge.

 

“Swish swish,” he heard while she kept up with his pace, while he envisioned her thighs rubbing together naked under her silk skirts. Were they jellied or firm? Would they hide her folds? Did he need hands to pull them apart before he tasted of her excess?

 

When they entered his attic room she thought it might be sparse through financial necessity as it held only a single bed, a chair, a dresser, oil lamp and a corner table. A photo from President Lincoln’s inauguration hung on the wall, cut from the Astorian Times and beginning to yellow with age. Mrs. Nicholaa sat down comfortably on the edge of his white sheet-covered pallet while peeling her crimson kid skin gloves off her meaty fingers. Her eyes darted to movement in the corner of the room. Vermin perhaps. She heard more up above the ceiling scraping their way through the night.

 

"How long have you lived here,” she asked remembering a Mr. Hawkins who had also lived on the wharf.  She had seen a rat in his water closet when attempting to clean up the painful mess he had left behind on her back and thighs before returning to her home on Bond street with the white picket fence.

 

“It will be a year on the 28th of October,” he said while unbuttoning his shirt. She watched with practiced eyes, a swallow jiggling her neck folds when he was done. His slicked black hair glowed on the left side nearest the lamp. His parted mustache trimmed neat over his full upper lip. She hoped he smelled clean, like the rosemary soap she made at Christmas.

 

With an unscarred hand, she patted her chignon. Blond wisps framed her face in a sort of planned abandonment. Several pins she dropped into her purse with the coins she’d be earning this evening. Her long hair unraveled down her back in what she thought of as her signature move.

 

“Stand up. Turn and face the wall.”

 

She did as instructed.

 

“Take off your dress.”

 

There were twelve moss colored silk buttons on her chest. He had counted them at dinner while enjoying their strained performance over her bountiful bosom.

 

Mrs. Nicholaa’s dress fell to her ankles exposing full hips to glowing lamp light. Just as he’d hoped. Nothing at all under all those layers but a filthy fullness.

 

Mr. Twombly now dropped his pants and drawers. Easily dropping off his skeletal features. Peeled his stockings off until he felt the chill on his hardened genitals. His violin case leaned against his dresser. Two buckles held it together on worn leather straps. He opened it with shaking hands, onto the table for best light. His prized possessions laid in wait. Cleaned and ready.

 

 A frayed rope, the first in line.

 

“Climb onto the bed Mrs. Nicholaa. On your hands and knees.”

 

She complied with silence. Her head lifted to the shelf above his pillow. On it she saw a blue sapphire ribbon, a faded piece of lace, a gold hair pendant and three pearl buttons. Curious baubles she thought to herself as his rough hands snaked around her ankles with loops attached to his bed frame.

 

“Legs, farther apart,” he said through a strained breath, bending down to smell her most intimate region. Was it excitement or fear in her moist folds he wondered.

 

Faster than she expected, his fingers shoved deep inside her. No warning. No slow caress up her legs or down her back. No kind words or cupping of her breasts.

 

Three fingers bruising in their movements curled towards her pelvis. She took one deep breath and thought of her son with her mother as Mr. Twombly’s fingers pinched her nose with his free hand. She thought of her house on Bond street with the dahlias standing proud as he covered her mouth. His pace quickened in her cunt, drawing blood as she pictured fresh bread on her table, a handmade quilt on her bed. She could hear his breath grow heavier while she tightened her eyes shut and pictured the locks on her windows, the locks on her doors. She counted to ten, then again, then again.

 

Exactly on thirty, he released her mouth and she gulped for air. She had wood for the winter. New shoes for her Mother.

 

“I apologize Mrs. Nicholaa. I was so taken by the lovely view of your backside I could not withhold myself.”

 

Both breathing deeply, he leaned down to her green dress and fingered the red lace collar with his moist fingers. Yes, next he would bind her mouth with the leather bit waiting in his violin case. Buckle it tightly at the back of her head so her mouth would stay open.

 

Mrs. Nicholaa thought of tomorrow. When she would bake an apple pie in her newly painted blue kitchen. Yes, she’d let her son add cinnamon sugar and poke his fingers into the dough.

 

 

Diana Kirk hails from the Pacific Northwest but spends more time across borders requiring passports with her husband and three sons. She’s previously been published in Yellow Mama, Metro Fiction, Thought Catalog and Literary Kitchen.

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