Thursday, 28 March 2013

Adrian gets airhead (excerpt from "Ich Will")

Photo by Cheeky Angels
One day, in grade ten, a girl came to my desk (which was in a corner at the back of the class) during a break. To my surprise, she started talking to me. She said she dug my style. She was short, with dark hair caught in a ponytail, white skin, a freckled tiny nose and lively hazel eyes. She had a cute, shy smile and small, white, perfectly ordered teeth. I honestly hadn’t noticed her before, although we had been in the same class for two years. Her name was Jessica Anderson. She said that she noticed I was interested in philosophy and was wondering what I thought about truth, real truth; was it inside us or outside of us? I immediately observed that she must have read this somewhere and rehearsed it. Those words seemed alien in her mouth, not covered in the placenta of her understanding. But I didn’t mind it. When I started to express my complicated views about truth, Jessica seemed to be hanging on my every word. It was as if magical, golden bubbles were floating out of my mouth. After school she walked with me to my apartment building and, before I went inside, she kissed me on the cheek, smiled, and blushed. Only later did I find out that the boy was supposed to walk the girl home. In our case, it was the other way around. She would walk me home every day. I enjoyed our conversations mainly because they were ways of talking to myself.

One Friday after school I asked her if she wanted ice-cream. She accepted with enthusiasm. It was a hot, sunny day in early June, with summer vacation right around the corner. I bought her a vanilla ice-cream cone and I had a chocolate one. Then we started walking down the main street checking out the shops and studying other couples. At one point she held my hand and I looked at her and smiled. I knew she thought we were boyfriend and girlfriend, but I didn’t feel like saying anything. I noticed her tiny, energetic tongue lick the vanilla-ice and then wet her cherry lips. We sat on a bench in front of a splashing fountain, right across from the town hall. I lit a cigarette. I was already committed to the Hollywood brand. Jessica kept talking about something—I guess maybe her plans for future studies and what most interested her—but I was busy trying to mentally undress the young women walking by in short shorts and revealing tops.

She stopped talking for a bit, looked deeply into my eyes and said “You’re such a good listener, Adrian.”

I nodded. Then I asked her if she fancied going to the cemetery and she accepted immediately. It seemed that she agreed even before understanding the content of the suggestion.

This girl would say yes to anything, I thought to myself.

In the cemetery we checked out many graves and marble crosses, laughing at the overdramatic epitaphs and the pictures people put on them. Near the cemetery was a long, green dyke and the Nelson River was flowing in the valley right behind it. There was a soft breeze in the air and the fresh smell of grass and wildflowers was overpowering. Jessica picked up a few dandelions and blew the puffy seeds in my face laughing and ran away towards the water. I closed my eyes and smiled, white seeds caressing my skin.

“Oh, I’ll get you for this!” I warned and began to chase her.

The stream was high and turbid, moving slowly like a lazy, green snake. It slithered through the plains and, eighty miles east it cut Edville in half. We walked up the dyke and ran down the river valley. We sat down on the grass by the river’s bank and started making out. I felt her icy, small tongue curiously probing my mouth and I grew hard. She began caressing me through my jeans. Next, she unzipped them and started stroking with delicate, nervous fingers. Instinctively, I pressed down on her shoulder. Understanding my desire, she went down on me, icy lips with small teeth wrapping me timidly. Her hands went to my hips.

“No hands,” I said. “Don’t touch me with your hands!”

She put her hands behind her back obediently and started bobbing her head up and down with no support. She was moving slowly but surely, determined to please me. Soon I started to feel strange, raped and humiliated, and I asked her to stop. I put my hand on her shoulder and stood up.

“Open your mouth and close your eyes!” I asked.
She did.

She sat on her knees, hands on her lap, her mouth round, waiting patiently. Her eyes were closed, moving in anticipation under her eyelids. After some time I released my dense, white jet into her mouth and she choked and smiled at me with teary, hazel eyes. White semen dripped down her chin.

“I think I swallowed some,” she said. “Ew, it’s so salty!”

I didn’t reply.

I just pulled up my pants in a hurry and walked away, leaving her there. She whispered my name weakly but I didn’t answer. I just wanted to go home and read something, probably something by Dostoyevsky. I felt empty and angry at myself. I was dirty and spiritually confused.

“Adrian!” she called after me again. But she knew it was in vain—she’d had it coming. The resignation strangled her voice. From now on Jessica would live outside my world, on the fringes of my narrative, always looking for an opening in the text, always pushed away by the typewriter’s keys, like a homeless person thrown into the streets by the doorman of a luxury hotel. Jessica would become just a picture in the cemetery of my memory, a picture of a girl waiting with her mouth wide open and her eyes shut.

What happened to her, you may rightly ask? I really don’t know. But maybe this is what happened: Jessica got pregnant on that day, but somehow she got pregnant in the head. She began wandering around the river bank and eating grass and hunting stray dogs. Her head started getting bigger and throbbing with new life. One day, while sitting in the shadow of a tree by the water, her head exploded. Blood sprayed on the green leaves and on the ground. A lizard then crawled out of her ruined skull and quickly climbed into the tree and walked on one of the branches. When it got close to the stream it stopped, strongly hugging the branch. The lizard stood still like that looking at the river with rigid eyes. After many days, round eyes without eyelids asked the water: “Are you my father? Are you my mother? Are you my parents?” The river murmured in reply: “No, we are neither your father nor mother nor your parents for you are no lizard but you are God and God has no parents.”

As you might have guessed, I never had any real friends. This is due mainly to the fact that I was healthy. The way I see it, the need for friends and company is a disease and terrible weakness. Of course, I’d call Nietzsche, Heidegger and Dostoyevsky my friends, in a sense. Sure, they were my favorite companions, and so were the girls in the Playboy magazines and the actresses playing in the pornos I devoured. But calling them friends was a stretch. I just disliked the presence of others in my own space—their faces, their voices, their gestures, clothes, and smells. I despised everything about them, but especially their eyes. What I saw in other people’s eyes made me sick, my stomach squeezed by the claws of disgust. That’s why I’d normally avoid eye contact. When talking to someone I’d either look up over their head, or down, studying the tops of my shoes. I’d focus on my train of thought and do my best to protect my wondering, untainted attention from their verbalizing.



"Ich Will" is available through Wolf on Water Print!

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