My month in New York was passing quickly and was mostly uneventful. I did not fuck a soul while in the city. About a week or two into my experimental New York life, I ran into Number Nine. Since we were in similar fields of work, this was not too surprising, it was however, undesirable. It was a very quick hi and bye, he had to be somewhere, and I had to be anywhere else.
About ten minutes after seeing me, he texts me, apologizing for the quick departure. At that point, I simply did not care, I did not really want to force a conversation. Our communication was strictly a physical one. I told him that I was staying in Astoria for the month, noting the convenience if we did want to fuck. His reply was that he couldn’t because he was “kind of seeing someone.” To which I had a great laugh, and reminded him that that very thing had not stopped him from fucking me over the summer. He conceded the point, but said that he was “trying to be better.” Naturally I did not believe him. I also disliked the idea that monogamy is somehow “better” and the people that adhere to it are somehow “better.”
Nonetheless, we continued to text throughout the month, sending filthy messages with even filthier pictures. That was harmless. Sending pictures and sexting were in no way cheating, so he was, laughably, “better.” Nothing would come of the communication other than mild emotional distress on my part. I would not see him again for almost a year.
Still, my heart would still race whenever he would text me. He had his own text tone. I chose the most sinister sounding one, since it would make me laugh, and I wanted to laugh before reading anything he wrote. The tone is ‘suspense’ on iPhones, if you’d care to listen. That tone at that time was to be just for him. But then, the men with the same physical response from me just kept adding up, so now all former lovers have the ‘suspense’ tone… If their number is not outright blocked.
The most significant moment of the first month of that new and wonderful year was almost forgotten. I have not thought about it in quite some time. I haven’t wanted to dwell on it, I never saw a need to do so. Though, despite the lack of thought, it is an important occurrence that has since been repeated by more than one man. Really, I have repeated and perpetuated it. It is of my doing.
Before moving to the city, I had already planned a trip to Asheville, North Carolina. The trip was designed for me to find further employment within the arts. Number Ten had asked if I wanted company. Usually my mother accompanied me on these sorts of trips, and, in retrospect, I wish she had on this one. But I agreed to travel with Number Ten. I did want to fuck, it had been a few weeks since I had. The sex was secondary to the primary purpose of the trip. I was there to find work. For Number Ten, who had not seen me in three weeks, it was for pleasure, primarily his pleasure.
The drive down from the north was a long one. It started out fine, but as the hours pressed on, our tempers began to rise. We began to argue about little things. He kept needing and wanting to stop. I like to press on when I travel, making minimal stops. At one of the stops, he bought beef jerky, a smell I despise. As we got closer to our destination, I noted how hungry I was, but also a need to scope out tomorrow’s location. He wanted to find food, ignoring my need to be slightly more comfortable with my forthcoming stressful day. We must have gone into three or four different restaurants, all of which were unacceptable to him or me. Hunger and anger began to mix, and we became very short and pointed with each other.
Once we got to the hotel room, it all exploded. He was mad, I was mad that he was mad. I did not want to have to take his feelings and needs into account during MY trip. Looking back, it probably stemmed from his (rightful) insecurity within the relationship. He wanted attention and affection that I did not give him. He stormed out of the room, slamming the door behind him. I was furious, and wildly upset, the perfect time to call my mother. I told her that I was regretful of my choice in travel companion, and wished that she was there. I knew if she were there, we would have been watching a murder mystery on television with our takeout dinners in our beds. Instead I had an emotional man to deal with. I nether wanted nor needed the distraction. I needed to focus on the following day, not quelling the wild feelings of Number Ten.
We found one another in the lobby and had to confront the problem. Luckily, the hotel had a restaurant, which is where we ate. That put out a lot of the fire. After eating, we retired to our room, where I assume we had sex. I don’t remember, but he undoubtedly needed the physical reassurance.
He was very difficult when it came to planning the following day. There was one car, and he wanted to use it, making it difficult for me to get anywhere to get food or rest during the day. Despite the unnecessary stress, the day went well. It was certainly very long, but ultimately successful with several job offers.
Since Number Ten had my car, I had to wait for him to pick me up at the end of my day. It was late, and I was exhausted, wanting nothing more than to eat and lay in bed. Tired and hungry seemed to be the theme of the entire trip. As I paced outside waiting for the arrival of my lover, I received a text from Number Nine, telling me of a new job he was just offered. A job that I had tried, unsuccessfully, to get. This infuriated me, but did not surprise me. Number Nine would (and still does on occasion) tell me of his personal and professional successes, a rather annoying trait. Granted, I at one time, feigned interest, and he probably still thought I cared and would be delighted by the news.
Since I was still waiting for my ride, I called my mother again. I told her everything, about Number Ten making the trip miserable, Number Nine describing his achievements, and about my otherwise successful day. She always knows the right thing to say, and said it until Number Ten showed up.
Once in the car, I told him that I needed a lot of food as fast as possible. He was insistent on this one particular restaurant his mother had told him about, located in the center of Asheville. Reluctantly, I agreed. So to the center of town we went, and on a Saturday night, it was packed. It took an eternity to park at a distance from our destination. We walk into an hour-long wait for a table. He wanted to eat there so badly, and I was too tired to argue or move. So we wait. My anger rising at the situation, but I am too tired to act on it.
After a long wait, I sat across from him at the table, hating him. I had already chosen what I thought would be my meal. Unfortunately, it was one of those vegetarian, vegan, healthy, earth-friendly hippie places. These places use flax in abundance, a food to which I am highly allergic. It was the very thing that ruined our nice dinner the month before. It was in everything in that place. So, I ordered soup.
When one is tired and hungry, soup satisfies nothing. He ate his meal as I slowly, and begrudgingly sipped my broth. I was crashing fast, and we left. I was still starving. Upon our return to the hotel, I finally got to order substantial food.
All I wanted was to crawl into bed, by myself, and go to sleep. I was so mad at Number Ten, and he was frustrated with me. The trip was not as focused on him and ‘us’ as he had wanted. But there were we in the hotel room with two single beds. He gets into bed with me. I wanted to make my disinterest known. I was still not able to voice my opinions to my lovers, and hoped he would pick up the physical cues. He didn’t. So he kissed and touched me. It did not occur to me that saying no was an option. I had never said no, save the supposed drunken protest the night of my deflowering.
Soon enough, he was inside me. I laid there, staring up, thinking about how much I did not want him., how I was repulsed by him. I continued to stare at the ceiling, wanting it to stop, wanting to cry. He suggests that I turn onto my stomach, a position he knows I like, feeling how dry I was and hoping that position change would amend it. While on my stomach, he thrust himself into me, causing pain to radiate outward from my vagina. This is what made me cry. On my stomach, crying into a pillow, he continued to try and force himself into my dry cunt. Still, I did not say no or tell him to stop. I did not think that I had it in me to say anything. I cared, but not strongly enough to voice it.
Eventually he stops, not coming close to ejaculation. He could now feel my lack of desire and enjoyment. Luckily he did not see me crying. After a few minutes and a few apologies from me for being so dry and unable to fuck he says to me, “I feel like I raped you.” My first thought was, “kind of an accurate feeling, never do that again.” But I assured him that he had not. He hadn’t. I did not say no, I did not stop it. He would not have known to think otherwise. I am always ready and willing to have sex, why would this time be different?
I find that this apathy in bed still plagues me. Even if I do not want to fuck, I allow it to happen. If he wants it, I must want it. I do not care enough for myself to say anything. Then I find myself drifting to that same place where I stare at the ceiling or cry into a pillow, wanting it to stop, but feeling unable to do so. I have this self-inflicted obligation to fuck. I am too apathetic to think that my opinions in bed matter. It’s just sex. And after all, who am I to say no to it?
Luckily, I am starting to remove this apathetic response from my bedroom trysts. “No” has entered my vocabulary on occasion. That’s not to say that I would ever fuck out of a feeling of obligation again, but the frequency will certainly decline. I hope.
But back in Asheville, North Carolina in January of 2013, Number Ten remained in my bed for a little bit after the failed attempt at fornication. Eventually, to my delight, he moved to the other bed, leaving me to sleep in peace. It is difficult to sleep next to someone at anytime, let alone in a single bed with someone who had just tried to fuck your unwilling pussy. By myself, I slept soundly.
The next day, we left mid-morning to go back north. The ensuing nine hour drive was the most silent road trip I have ever taken. Less than ten words must have been uttered between us. I was mad, I didn’t have anything to say, neither did he. So for nine hours, I stared at the road ahead, and he stared out the passenger window. Near the end of our trip, defenses lowered and partial communication began. We stopped at a Cracker Barrel for dinner, casually chatting as if the previous hours of tense silence had not happened. But things did not go back to “normal” again. I was resentful of the trip, and he was resentful of my lack of feeling and devotion.
I happily left for New York the following day. I needed a city full of strangers, not a small town and resentful lover. Number Ten and I would fuck again, but not before I fucked Numbers Twelve and Thirteen first.