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Break Up To Make Up
Sunshine and warm waters had drained any and every ounce of saved energy in my body, while confrontation and cold shoulders had extracted all of my previously repressed emotions, each depressing my mood more than the last. Our break-up had been painful enough; the delayed repercussions were even worse. For the life of me, I could not wrap my head around how unfairly judgmental and critical his friends were being, especially given the fact that they had never even heard my side of the story. All they knew, and cared for, was to honor the infamous “Bro Code” which, no manner what Nate had done, would pin them against me. A guy’s friends would sooner go a year without sex than side with a woman over one of their buddies; it was simply against the “Bro Code”.
Alone in the guestroom for a third night, I became extra attentive to the sounds of the drizzling rain outside and the faint sounds of Amy and Miranda giggling in the neighboring room. Even though they had pleaded for me to join them, I couldn’t find the energy in me to do so, knowing full well that they would end up talking into the early hours of the morning; I would much rather miss out on one night’s worth of conversational bonding with them, than fall asleep in their company and risk facial disfiguration by way of sharpie markers and whipped cream. For the time being, my moisturizer and night cream would do just fine.
Just as I shifted in bed so as to lie on my left side, I heard a noise coming from somewhere behind me. Thinking that it was only Miranda going to the kitchen for some late night snacks, I took a deep breath and tried to calm my mind; the comments and events from the incident earlier in the day were still floating in my head, buttressed by memories that decided now was the optimum time to come rushing back.
“Come on, babe! It’s no big deal and there’s nobody around,” pleaded Nate, already unzipping his pants without waiting for my answer.
“Uh-uh. No! Someone’s bound to walk by and see us,” I countered. We were in the parking lot of the local mall, shielded by his tinted windows and the cement walls on two of the four sides of his 2003 Hyundai. I absolutely abhorred doing this with every ounce of my heart, and Nate was the only guy I had ever cared for enough to place his satisfaction and desires above mine. It never dawned on me, until after we had split, that if he loved me as much as he claimed he did, he never would have made me do something I despised… time after time after time.
“Please, baby. For me?” his eyes bore into mine as all of his mental thoughts flooded me. If I said no, he would be cold and standoff-ish for the rest of the day. If I said no, he wouldn’t kiss me and smile at me and hold my hand while we walked around the mall. If I said no, he would go to his friend’s house tonight, get high, and not text or call me until tomorrow night. If I said no, he would make me feel like I was being selfish and conceited, not doing enough to please and keep my man. “Only for a little bit. I promise next time will be all about you,” he smiled reassuringly as he said this, placing his hand on my head and steering it in the direction of his crotch. It was never about me. It was about giving him what he wanted. He had made this promise before, yet whenever it came time for it to be “all about me”, he had the same request, the same expectation of me, the same manipulative demeanor to ensure that I, once again, place his needs above mine, convinced that I was doing the right thing.
“I don’t want to,” I protested with a near whisper, my pleas reminding me of those of a helpless child. With his palm firmly planted on my head to avoid me escaping, as I had managed to do in the past, he ignored my comment, not bothering to even respond. As the space between my mouth and his member disappeared, my eyes closed, my mouth opened, and my heart sank for the umpteenth time.
“What’s wrong?” A voice jerked me out of my thoughts and onto the corner of my bed, as I gripped the sheets in rigid fear. I was so deeply frightened that I found it utterly impossible to even ask who the intruder was, even though I was already convinced it was a psychopathic serial killer who had chosen me as his next victim. “Kami, are you okay?” asked the psychopathic serial killer who sounded a lot like Renzo.
I found my voice again and snapped, “Renzo?! What the h*ll are you doing in here??” I got up in anger, ready to push him out of the room if I had to. For some reason, I felt like he had witnessed my flashback or felt it in a way that indubitably violated my privacy. It was like he knew… and this was not something that I wanted him, or anyone else, knowing.
“Oh,” he took on a more concerned and guilty tone, “I’m sorry. I just… I thought you heard me come in and, then, when you didn’t I didn’t really know how to make my entrance.” He chuckled and when my lack of amusement became apparent, he headed in my direction. Courtesy of the pitch-black darkness we were in, he couldn’t judge the space that existed between us and I couldn’t see how far he’d advanced in order to move out of his way. One minute I was standing by my bed, my hands crossed in front of me, and the next I was falling onto my bed, Renzo’s weight pinning me down.
I couldn’t move; that, as far as I was concerned, was an unwelcome fact due to my exhausted body and fatigue. Renzo’s built frame and thoroughly developed muscles didn’t help my case, either, as I struggled to slide from underneath only to realize that my mission was a lost cause.
“My bad,” apologized Renzo, his breath minty fresh and body emanating an alluring masculine scent from his recently applied aftershave. I placed my hands on his shoulders so as to push him off me, only to realize that he had only one piece of clothing on- his boxers. “Are you- Are you really trying to push me off? You know you’re delusional, right? If you think you can actually do it,” he chuckled.
I giggled, “I can feel you.”
“Um… Well, yeah, I’m kind of on top of you,” he admitted.
“No. Yeah.” I paused, for fear of confusing him beyond repair. “I mean, I can feel your voice in your whole body… when you laugh,” I revealed. For some reason, this discovery felt like the most intimate piece of knowledge I had of him. When he talked, and more so when he chuckled, his voice underwent a sensual transformation; it was no longer an auditory output but rather a physical sensation that flowed through his body and into mine.
It was impossible to see his reaction and the deafening rain pounding on the floor-to-ceiling windows a few feet away made touch the only sense I could depend on for a response. Oh, and then there was taste.
Before I could protest or even formulate a coherent thought, I felt his lips lightly graze my own as my eyes closed involuntarily and a wave of tingles flowed from where our lips had made contact to an area deep within my body. An instinctive moan escaped my lips, betraying my sheer serenity and uninhibited satisfaction. His embrace was unparalleled in its devoted preservation of my safety and well-being and euphoric attachment to my mind, body, and soul; Nate’s delirious desire had never been for me, but for what I had to offer. With Renzo, it was about our beings coming together as one, about the indestructible bond our hearts had fabricated, about us.
Feeling the buttons of the shirt he had lent me come undone beneath the weight of his chiseled chest, I momentarily came back to the conscious rationale which constantly ruled my mentality. I placed my hand on his, halting his fingers in mid-air. I couldn’t allow myself to experience the same betrayal and misery that Nate had caused me, especially when I was so emotionally attached to Renzo.
“I’m not him, Kami,” whispered Renzo, his breathe swirling on the skin of my lower neck. “If you want to stop, I understand, but don’t delude yourself by thinking I’m just like him. I’d give the world to be with you, Kamila. Let me heal your scars, and treat you right, and love you… in a way that only I can.” If his presence hadn’t been overwhelming, his words had dissipated any remaining fears I had of just how genuine his actions were.
He leaned down and kissed me for the first time, his hand caressing my cheek. I smiled and didn’t interrupt him, again.