“You’re drunk,” he insisted, hoping that saying so would somehow negate the impact of what she had just said. He stepped closer to her, looking hard into her eyes. “You don’t know what you’re saying.”
She took a drag of her cigarette and exhaled away from him.
“He told me he didn’t ever want kids. And that I…” she paused for a moment and looked away from him. “That I wasn’t the maternal type.”
He wondered for a moment if she might cry, might step forward and lean her head against him, softening against his chest, allowing him to wrap his arms around her, comfort her, care for her. Instead she dropped what remained of her cigarette to the ground, turned, and began walking briskly away.
He caught up to her quickly, but she remained quiet as he fell in beside her and rounded the corner onto his street.
“So what did you do?” he asked.
“I had an abortion,” she said, her voice steady and firm. “It was what he wanted.”
She stopped again, looking across the street. He could see his apartment building, could see his living room window on the second floor. He was eager to get her inside, to shut the door behind them and lock out the rest of the world. She was open and exposed out here on the sidewalk, under the expanse of the sky, where anything could swoop in and snatch her away from him. He needed her contained.
“Hey, isn’t there a park over across the way?” she asked.
“Yeah, a little playground-“
“With a slide?” Her eyes were bright and she moved in close, looking up at him with a sly smile. “Let’s fuck on the slide,” she whispered.
“I don’t think-“
“Don’t think!” she laughed and in a flash she was running away from him, darting into the quiet street, unsteady with drunkenness as she turned to look over her shoulder at him.
“Come on!” she called. He was too drunk to run smoothly, so he stuck his hands in his pockets and strode across the street.
Contained. He needed her contained, but she was so damn fluid, so utterly uncontainable.
She was walking backwards, looking at him, making sure he was following her. She passed beneath the glow of a street light at the park’s entrance and disappeared into the darkness behind it. It had engulfed her completely; he could no longer see her. His heart was suddenly pounding, his palms sweaty.
“Where are you?” he called.
She stepped out, laughing, from behind a small field house to his right.
“Kyla, let’s go. My apartment is right there.”
But she did not respond, instead pulling off her top and tossing it aside. She was walking away from him again, heading past the swings and toward the slide at the back of the fenced in playground. He followed, his pulse quickening as she reached around, unhooked her bra, and let it slide down her arms and to the ground. He had always found her bare back beautiful, long and smooth until it widened out at her hips. God, he wanted her.
She was already naked when he reached the slide.
The taste of alcohol was heavy on her tongue as she wrapped an arm around his neck and pulled him in for a kiss. He was overwhelmed by the cocktail of cool night air, whiskey, and her skin, unsure of where to touch her first. He wanted to touch her everywhere at once, wanted his hands in her hair, on her face, on her hips, on her back, on her breasts, sliding between her legs. He was dizzy with wanting her.
Her hands were at his waist, fumbling with his belt buckle. He looked quickly around the park. The back fence was lined with trees and the streetlight at the entrance was far enough away that they would be protected by the darkness.
She was breathing rapidly, her chest rising and falling urgently as she pushed his pants down. He normally loved the feel of her hands on him, longed for her to touch him more, but tonight he did not care that she was barely touching him. She had grabbed his wrist and was climbing onto the slide.
“Hurry,” she said breathlessly as she laid down. Maneuvering on the slide was not easy, but it only took him a moment to get his footing.
He felt the weight of the night fall off of him the instant he slid inside of her. She grabbed at his back, digging her nails into him as she pulled him deeper. He felt a rush of excitement that went beyond anything sexual; he would erase the night with every thrust inside of her. There was no abortion, no Facebook status, no ex, no fiancé. He would erase it all until he felt sure none of it had actually happened.
“Wait,” she said. “Condom.”
“No,” he said and moved faster inside of her.
“Get a condom,” she repeated, her words slightly slurred.
He ignored her, instead taking her wrists in his hands and pinning them up over her head. She arched her back and moaned. Her breathing was fast, her eyes shut, her legs wrapped tightly around his waist.
“Look at me,” he told her. He wanted to see her need for him in her eyes.
She opened her eyes but quickly turned her head away.
“Harder,” she half moaned, half whispered. He obliged, but as he looked down at her face turned to the side, he saw her cheek was wet.
“Are you crying?” he asked.
“No,” she said quickly. “Now don’t stop, keep going.”
But even as she insisted that she was not crying, a fresh tear slid down her face, disappearing into her hair.
“You are,” he said. He let go of her wrists but did not move off of her. Her legs remained tight around him.
“It’s fine,” she said, wiping the tears away as new ones fell. “Just keep going.”
He touched her face tenderly. Finally, she was soft and small beneath him. Finally, she was crying before him.
“What’s wrong?” he asked softly.
She kept her head turned to the side, looking, it seemed to him, at some distant, invisible spot in the trees.
“He said he didn’t want kids,” she said, her voice so quiet he could barely hear her. “But she’s having his baby. And he’s going to marry her.”
Adam Greene. All of her fucking, her wanting, her urgency, it had all been about Adam Greene. He felt a wave of heat and adrenaline wash over him, a rush of fiery anger like he had never known before.
His hands were around her head in a flash, without thought, lifting it and slamming it repeatedly against the slide, 1-2-3-4, with as much force as her betrayal warranted. She grunted, a stunned look on her face, but before she could make another sound he had released her head and clenched his hands around her throat.
Her throat. Her sweet, delicate throat that he loved to run his tongue along, loved to kiss, loved to smell, felt small in the fierce grip of his hands. She was panicked beneath him, her eyes wild as she clawed franticly at his arms. This was just like Kyla, to be so full of fight. His sudden anger had caused him to go limp, but he felt himself grow hard again as she struggled, the crushing of her windpipe within his hands leaving him in awe of his own strength. He squeezed tighter as her eyes rolled back in her head and she slipped from consciousness, but he did not let go, not until her chest had stopped rising and her throat was no longer pulsating beneath his fingers. Only then did he release her, stepping back from her body to catch his breath.
She was more beautiful than he had ever seen her, lying there naked and exposed, one leg draped over the side of the slide, the inside of her pale thigh still shiny with fluid from their sex. Her neck had turned a brilliant shade of purple and he was glad for it. It was a tangible sign that she was his now, that he had finally, at last, contained her. Her head was resting at an unnatural angle against the rail of the slide.
He wanted pictures. He wanted to be able to remember this, to look upon the photos whenever he was feeling low or insecure. His phone was in his pants which, with his shoes, were next to the slide. He hadn’t bothered to remove his shirt.
He no longer felt intoxicated, he noticed, as he was easily able to balance as he stepped into his pants. It wasn’t until he had pulled up the zipper and buttoned them that he realized his belt was no longer strewn within his pant loops. He peered around the area surrounding the slide but could not see it. He tried to recall Kyla taking it off him, but it seemed her hands had gone from struggling to taking his pants off in an instant. She had most likely pulled it out of the loops and tossed it aside, he rationalized. No matter, he had others. And he wanted to get pictures of her body while it was warm.
He began photographing her from afar in order to capture the hard sloping line of the slide in contrast to the soft curve of her leg dangling over the side. As he moved closer to take pictures of her face and neck, he scowled with the realization that he hadn’t had the release of an orgasm. He briefly considered masturbating right there, next to her body, but ultimately decided against it, as it was beneath him to do something so lewd in a public place. No, he would go home, take his time viewing her pictures, and let his excitement rise and fall until he could no longer contain himself.
The pictures were stunning. He felt confident that he had successfully captured every angle of her that he would ever desire. Satisfied, he made his way back to the park entrance. He was eager to get home and as he crossed the street toward his apartment, he found that he felt happier than he had in months. For once, hue felt a sense of pride in himself as a man. He had asserted control in an out-of-control situation. He had contained the uncontainable. He was the master of his own universe, he thought as he strode up the stairs of his building and let himself into his apartment. All was right in his world. He would sleep soundly tonight, of that he was sure.
It was the call of approaching sirens that woke him the next morning.