It was only the second party since the gatherings (or, if you want to be technical about it, orgies) had started up again, but it all felt very familiar, walking down the block to Tilda’s building. When I’d first started attending Jefferson’s parties back in 2007, I’d been nervous. But now I was mostly just looking forward to seeing the people I considered friends. And, um, getting laid.
I’d meant to be fashionably late, but as it turned out I was early: the only people present were Tilda, Jefferson, the server boy — a new one this time — and Byron. We all said hello. I settled on the sofa next to Byron, where I calculated my chances of bedding him. He put an arm around my shoulder: pretty good, I estimated. I’d just had a very chaste date, courtesy of Nerve, and was feeling game. Or, you know, horny.
I ended up near the food, a strategic move on my part since Byron was hovering nearby. We exchanged pleasantries and ate extraordinarily large (biologically engineered, no doubt) strawberries. He leaned against the arm of the sofa, so we were at eye-level. I looked at him, and he grinned at me; we did that teenage-y thing where you sort of punch the other person on the arm to indicate interest. It was like an illustration from a book: Seduction for the Socially Awkward. After a bit of knocking one another on the shoulder, I finally managed some face contact.
I am much better at kissing than I am at the run-up to the kiss. My lips traveled the way stops to his mouth: his temples, the left cheek, the ears and that tender spot just below the ear, behind the jaw. Then I found his mouth and we kissed. This was interspersed with more eating of the mutant strawberries and sniggering at one another. Like I said, it was strangely reminiscent of junior high. Of course, in junior high I never kissed anyone; I was too terrified and inept to flirt. Instead I hung around the sidelines, pestering the DJ to play Depeche Mode, and pretending I was dating Andrew McCarthy.
I was flirting like the teenager I had never been, but the lights in the room were bright, and I feel a lower wattage promotes a more seductive atmosphere. Also, the room was filling up, and I may be a slut, but I like the pretense of privacy, at least.
“We could go into the other room,” I mumbled to Byron. While a few more people had turned up, none of them appeared to be getting undressed, and I felt a little flagrant, fooling around with Byron in front of the canapés.
Toby arrived with a female guest I hadn’t met; she wore a white fur cape and knee high red boots, giving her the look of a burlesque superhero. Her name was Marianne. We chatted for a few minutes, but when they’d moved off, Byron turned and pushed me against the wall: “I’m going to rip your clothes off,” he grinned, and really, the correct adjective here is “devilishly.”
But I was still channeling my inner eighth grader, so I pushed him away. We tussled. Finally, after he’d tried to pull up my shirt for the second time I smirked at him: “Listen, you can be an exhibitionist, or you can get laid.” Then, trying not to laugh, I swanned off to the bathroom.
I had high hopes for this more straightforward seduction technique, but when I got out of the bathroom, he wasn’t there. So I sat on the edge of the sofa, because something was Going On: Toby was flogging Marianne. She had taken off the cape, and was wearing just knickers and her leather boots. She was bent over, facing the corner of the room and Tilda’s bookshelves. This was the same position Lisa had been in last time. Tilda, in her black party dress, went over to them and crept underneath Marianne’s prone body. Her face spooled towards Marianne’s clit.
“Tilda!” Jefferson warned, ever etiquette-wise. “That’s Toby’s scene! Ask permission!”
Some murmured discussion followed, and soon Tilda was permitted to nuzzle Marianne’s breasts and clit, as Jefferson and I watched.
But wait — I wasn’t here to watch — I had a boy to fuck. I caught Byron’s eye, and we traipsed into the middle room, where Toby was hard at work, thwacking Marianne’s ass. I had my eye on the back room, for some privacy, but it was a railroad flat and required some travel.
“Want to try?” Toby asked Byron. He handed him the flogger.
The flogger is, as I’ve noted, a sort of crop with tassels attached. These were soft leather. Byron struck Marianne experimentally, and was rewarded with an “Ooooh.” Her face wasn’t visible, but her ass was turning pink.
Toby raised his brows at me. “Oh, I’m not—” I said. Byron handed me the flogger.
I held it in my hand—it was heavy. I stood as if I was going to swing a bat, my knees bent. I squinted, and snapped, and the flogger sailed through the air, hitting nothing at all about a foot from Marianne’s ass. I have never been very good at any sport requiring hand-eye coordination. Or any sport at all, really. “Sorry,” I said.
“That’s OK,” Marianne didn’t seem too concerned.
I held the flogger out to Toby — after all, Marianne should be enjoying herself, getting flogged by someone who knew what he or she was doing, not an amateur who was going to interrupt herself to apologize every time she screwed up.
“Have you ever held a tennis racket?” Toby took my hands and placed each in the proper position: one at the top, another at the bottom. “Go ahead.”
Well… This time the flogger swiped Marianne’s outer thigh, apparently a big no-no. “You don’t want to hit her there, you could injure her,” Jefferson explained. “Are you OK?” he asked Marianne.
“Here, try this,” Toby handed me another flogger. This one was lighter, and certainly felt easier to handle. To my surprise, when I flicked it, it met Marianne’s ass with a satisfying slap.
“Oooh!” she said.
I felt a surge of pride and looked a little more carefully at Marianne’s ass. Pink stripes were appearing in criss-crosses across her pale flesh, and I felt a strong urge to see evidence of my own efforts on her skin. I hit her again.
“Ahh!” she said.
Frowning, I changed position a little, to get a better aim. Thwack. Thwack. I hit her ass several times in rapid succession. One actually drew a squeal of real pleasure.
This is easy, I thought, as I aimed another slap at her pink ass. Nothing to it at all. I missed, slicing the air near her. Huh. I tried again, and was rewarded with my loudest slap yet.
I hit her again, thinking, This is no big deal. And that’s when I stopped. Not because I wasn’t enjoying it, but because I was enjoying it as a technical exercise, like when you practice taking shots with a pool cue. I could go on and on, perfecting my wrist flick and watching the pink stripes blossom.
That was disturbing, and not only because I’d thought I was submissive. I stopped, and handed the flogger back to Toby. “Your turn,” I said.
Then Byron and I went into the bedroom. I felt a little dazed. I sat in Tilda’s desk chair, which was hidden from the door: no one could see us unless someone tucked their head in to look. “That was kind of freaky,” I said.
“Yeah?” Byron had his hands on my knees. I nodded. I felt kid of freaked out, as I said, not because it had been such a big deal, but because I’d found it easy, and satisfying. And also because I’m a bit of a drama queen, and I wanted (or needed?) acknowledgement.
But soon Byron and I fell to kissing, and without much ado we stumbled towards the bed.
I like kissing Byron so much. And when he took off his shirt I almost swooned. I thought, These freckles. They just undo me. I liked the idea of being undone.
But the freckles — what’s up with that? This is not the first time I’ve seen Byron’s freckles but, as Laurie Colwin says, “its effect… was not dimmed by repetition.” But they are just a splay of marks, a testament to uncovered shoulders at the beach. But I find the sight of them weirdly moving.
What other body parts of the men I’ve slept with (“lovers” would be the shorter, and more accurate term, but I just never use that word) have made me feel all tender? I thought about this as I kissed Byron’s stomach.
Sweetheart Daniel — well, everything about him sort of made me swoon, cause I had an enormous crush on him. I guess I’d have to say the contrast of his very pale skin against his very dark, very abundant hair. He was always clean shaven (no five o’clock shadow there) so if I hadn’t seen him shirtless I never would have guessed at how hairy he was (even his back). I found that pale skin against the dark hair moving.
Jed — Well, I loved Jed’s long curls and how his hair would get all matted and sweaty when we fucked.
Dean — Dean had very little hair on his chest. But he did have a few long hairs sprouting from his nipples, and they were gray. Despite his seven-year advantage, in some ways (like you know, in terms of personal maturity) Dean was very young — he was the baby of the family; he had no financial responsibilities and had, let’s face it, an adolescent attitude towards his brother. He used “Just For Men” to cover his gray hair. I don’t think he was particularly vain, but he had trouble being an adult. Those gray hairs revealed just how hopeless his efforts to remain young were.
And Michael — Oh, Michael. He had a series of stretch marks running up his sides, the legacy of a sudden growth spurt at age 13. Those pale, accordion-like slivers of skin! Michael, through the year and a half of our relationship, had never felt about me as I had about him, but the stretch marks made him seem vulnerable to me. Perhaps that’s what makes me sick with longing? A physical symbol vulnerability that has nothing to do with weakness but everything to do with the way the past marks the body? Oh, I have no idea.
Where was I? Oh right, on my knees. I tugged off Byron’s gray briefs, and then I murmured, “I was at work today, wondering if I’d get the chance to do this.” It was true, I had done just that while sitting in a meeting.
I wrapped my mouth around his dick and sighed, tasting the sweet heat of him in my nose. “Uh huh.” I slid my mouth up and down. “I was hoping I’d get to have you in my mouth,” I murmured in between sucks.
“Oooh…” said Byron, “Ooooh, Oooooh.” I love how verbal he is, how expressive of excitement. I smiled into his groin.
My head bobbed back and forth while I licked his balls and the hairy base of his dick. When I started to suck him off again, I pulled him in as far as I could before gagging.
“Hey!” said Byron, sounding pleased, “You took a lot!” I hadn’t quite deep-throated him, but I’d wanted to. Maybe next time. But now he was removing my clothes.
We fell onto Tilda’s bed. I could smell the clean sheets, and felt a little guilty at the thought of sweating all over them. But not much. We were both naked and his skin felt very smooth and soft against mine. In the other room, I could hear people talking. “Hey, let’s turn out the lights,” I suggested. It just seemed more intimate that way. I had also taken off my watch. That, too, had struck me as the proper way to fuck. I wanted to give it due respect.
He switched off the bedside lamp and brought his face close to mine. I stretched up towards him but he scooted down between my legs where he very briefly licked me. I remembered how he’d gone down on me while I sucked Jed off that last time, how much I’d enjoyed his tongue on my lips, so was sort of disappointed when he didn’t linger there. Instead he loomed up over me.
He put a condom on and slid inside me, very easy, not at all unfamiliar territory. In the next room, I could hear voices: My Friend Jake and company had arrived. “Uuuhhhh,” said Byron.
I was breathing heavily, wishing I could block out everything else. “Get on top,” Byron urged.
I started riding him. He was dripping with sweat—another trait I find oddly endearing. His hair gets wet from the sweat, it’s like stroking the hair of someone who’s just been in the shower. “Ahh,” I said, clenching my pussy tight around his cock and then releasing. “Can you feel it when I do that?”
“Yes!” I rode him back and forth while he licked my nipples, I knew I wasn’t going to come. I don’t know if it was the awareness of people in the next room (that hadn’t stopped me on other occasions) or what, but even though my legs were stretched tight and twitching, it wasn’t going to happen. After a few minutes my muscles sort of juddered to a halt and I lay down next to him.
Then Byron fucked me and oh, I loved the weight of him and the solid thrumming tick of his dick inside me. I felt wound up again.
He groaned and twitched and buried his face in my neck, then stopped, and pulled out. We lay next to one another. “Don’t you want to come?” I asked, not very delicately.
“Nah,” he was breathing heavily. “I had a wank before the party, so I can keep going longer.” So English, wank. We both giggled a little. “I’ll come in the morning.”
This was one aspect of preparing for a sex party I hadn’t thought of. (Truthfully, mostly I just tried to remember to wear nice underwear — a matching set, if possible).
“Some other people arrived,” Byron said.
“I heard them come in.”
After a bit we got dressed and put on the lights and then, with matted sex-hair, we slithered back to the party.
Back in the main room was My Friend Jake and a number of people he’d brought. I knew most of them; I’d introduced Jake to Jefferson. I settled on the sofa next to Jefferson, who looked a little worse for wear. And as Byron disappeared into the back room with Tilda, and I chatted with a much younger man in a suit about the House of Representatives, I wasn’t sure what was missing. Other than someone being lashed to Jefferson’s bed. Well, Mmmark wasn’t there, but I hadn’t seen him in ages, anyway.
It wasn’t until I was in the cab on my way home that I realized what had been so unnerving: out of all the people at the party, I was the one who’d been attending the longest, after Jefferson. I was officially old school. I had been so used to being the newbie, and, as awkward a role as it is, it was comfortable for me: I thrive on being a geek. Only several years had passed since I first traipsed into Jefferson’s living room and gleefully sucked off two strangers, and as the circumstances and the guests and the location had changed, I wondered if it was time for me to change, too.