hidden

masquerade

He got mad at her last night and called her a liar and she felt it a little unfair, given the black lights with which she filled his bedroom for his homecoming. Given the masquerade mask and lingerie she donned, not to mention the knee socks with cute little bows, the stilettos.

Although he took his time with those first. Stalked in to find her in his club chair, drinking his bourbon, her breasts and snatch and eyes aglow in iridescent blues.

“Go to bed, insane woman,” he’d told her the night before, by phone, after hours of tolerating her capriciousness. “My flight arrives in at ten tomorrow night; I expect to find you in my home when I get there.”

And this made her happy. Or contributed, at least, to making her happy. Because there was nothing she loved more, almost, than giving over her time to making a project of herself.

She arrived at his house hours early, to set up the lighting, to bathe and, finally, to decorate her body in elaborate costume and become acquainted with the woman wearing it.

Her brilliance, her singularity, she felt, stemmed from giving her own self the oodles of attention she felt she deserved. Why stand by for someone else to deliver on that? So while waiting for his car lights to flood the room, she made proud and artsy little videos in the scene she’d created.

“An homage. To me,” she giggled.

Beside herself by the time he finally he arrived, she rose to greet him, to kiss his wily face, but he wouldn’t have it. Somehow, he was angry with her. Something about her range of characters, their potential duplicity, and a recent desire to know he was penetrating the real her.

“Sit down,” he barked. “Get back to that chair.”

She stood before him, a little uncertain, feet apart but knees turning in, face hidden.

He moved to his bed, in its relative darkness. Lay down on his back. Threw an arm behind his head.

“Perform for me,” he told her.

She smiled, happy again, as yet unaware that the performances themselves were becoming a point of conflict.

“Perform,” he said again.

So she did.

~

 

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