Horizontal Lives

True Tales of the Infamous Courtesan: Persephone N. Hades and her Horizontal Life underground. How she got there, her mis-adventures and her struggle to re-surface.

Monday, January 24, 2005

What's the Phrase? Be Careful What You Wish For?


Big Trouble. Capital ‘T’. I was in big BIG Trouble.
In my heart-of-hearts, I knew we hadn’t done anything ‘bad’.
But I also knew that what we were doing was ‘verboten’.


It began when we were about 6 or 7, and continued until Katie got pubic hair (before me) at around age 10 or 11.


The routine we’d developed never varied and yet the thrill was always there.


With Katie as ‘look-out’ and I as ‘thief’ (or ‘temporary borrower’—as I preferred to think of it), I’d tip-toe into my parent’s room, quietly pry open my mother’s dresser drawer, snatch the first bra that met my fingers, and sneak into my bedroom, where Katie would silently close the door behind me.


I was the Doctor, she, the Patient.


After we had both completely disrobed, I would assist Katie into the bra and together we would stuff it to overflow. Usually meant emptying an entire box of Kleenex. Once accomplished, the game could begin.


Sitting on chairs opposite one another, Katie naked but for the bra, her legs crossed the way grown-ups do, and I naked but for the yellow legal pad in my lap and pen in my hand, the interview would begin.


"Where does it hurt?" I ask tapping the pen professionally on the paper, looking gravely concerned.


"Oh everywhere. Especially here." She says motioning to her bottom.


That was all we needed.


"I’ll need to examine you. Please lie down here in my examining room."


Obediently, Katie would lie on her stomach on the patch of carpeted floor between the door and the end of the twin bed.


(This was a well-thought out, strategic position. We felt that since my door was sans lock, that if anyone tried to enter, they would hit a body first, close the door and in that interim, we’d have time to scramble into our clothes. Or hide in the closet, where we stashed our clothes.
Looking back, it seems ridiculous, but in our young minds, it was a very good plan.)


From underneath my bed, I pull out various instruments of examination: a feather, powder, lotion, a comb. One by one I test them on her. On her butt, specifically.


Slowly, watching for reactions, I’d trace the feather in circles around her butt-cheeks, down the crack and back up again. Goosebumps rose, sometimes so many and so high I could see the blonde peach-fuzz hair stand straight up like little flags on a mountain.


"Does that hurt?" I inquire in my ‘Doctor’ voice.


"A little." She says.


"I’m going to have to try a few more tests."

Katie nods sadly, as if she is dying of a fatal illness. What must be done, must be done.


Next the lotion. Then the powder. Tracing designs with light fingertips, remaining safely on her cheeks only, never penetrating deeper, (we didn’t know there was anything ‘deeper’ to penetrate to), I create patterns on the surface of her skin.

Sometimes I close my eyes to see if I can just sense where my fingers should go next. Or if I could tell without looking, when the Goosebumps would arise.


I suppose it was, in a child’s way, sexual, although we never did anything that could be interpreted as such. We never touched genitals or even suspected we had any.


To Katie, it was pleasure. She came from an Irish Catholic household of many children, all girls, and parents who were not particularly physically affectionate. In fact, she was the first friend I knew who got punished with a belt.


For me, it was fascinating. I was amazed at what different touches did to her body. And I was in awe that my own fingers could create such a miracle.

As we progressed and practiced, I was stunned that I could pick up signals just with the tips of my fingers.


We loved our game. And although we never tired of it, we both felt the urge to try it on others. We needed newcomers. We needed fresh flesh.

That was the beginning of the end.
Together we recruited a few others from our Girl Scout Troop and after the 'newbie' went home, we’d giggle and compare notes on the reactions of her skin to our touch.


But then we went too far.


Both our parents were going out together for an evening at the movies. Angel, an older girl, maybe thirteen, who lived down the block, was to be the sitter for our combined families.

Once all the younger ones had gone to bed, Katie and I approached Angel.

She agreed.


Naked, she lay, face down, eyes closed, in the designated spot on the floor with Katie kneeling on one side of her and I on the other. We starred at her body. We starred at each other. We were horrified. What was all this black stuff? All this hair? Although she was on her tummy, we could see tufts of spider-like curly black hair creeping up from between her legs up into her crack.


In unison, we grit our teeth, raised our shoulders to our ears, squeezed our eyes shut and shivered. On her cheeks, instead of the soft, white fuzz of Katie, she had dark long hairs.

What could we do? We had to do something. We got this far.


Katie grabbed the feather, running it up and down her back. I dumped a hill of powder over her butt and spread it around so fast it flew up in a cloud, causing us to choke. Our coughs became laughter and soon Katie and I were sprawled giggling on the floor, unable to catch our breath.


Angel, thinking we had lured her into some embarrassing ploy, snatched her clothes, dressed and slammed the door behind herself.


The next day, I was summoned by my father. Gulp.
He stood.
I sat.
My mother sat to the side, in her usual mode when I did something bad, weeping and holding her chest, asking softly, but repeatedly if I hated her and wanted to kill her.
The confession was drawn out of me and I was ordered never to do such a thing again, then confined to my room to await further punishment.


Later that evening I heard my father outside my door, say to my mother, "Well, who knows. Maybe she’ll grow up to be a Doctor."


So it made sense, a month later, when my mother and I went on our yearly torture trip to the mall purchase clothes for me for the new school year, that my mother posed the question:


"What do you want to do when you grow up?" she asked, as we trudged, shopping-bag laden and tense from fighting over the appropriateness of the style of clothes I desired.


"I want to be naked as often as possible-clothed only by the hot sun, the wind & the salty breath of the sea; making love every time passions visceral or sensual pump my blood, sing with the rhythms of Nature—hear poetry spoken by the trees- and be very quiet and yet full of laughter—like the willow tree I knew when I was younger."


This is what I would have said in answer to the question, if I had the ability to comprehend all that my spirit told me I was.

But I didn’t. I was only twelve and I didn’t have the words yet. Only the feelings--the knowing--but no way to verbalize it.


Instead I said I wanted to go everywhere on the earth and meet every person who lived here on the planet at the same time I did.


It wasn’t the right answer.
She wanted to know what I wanted to BE.
And I didn’t know how to say it.

Or how, all that I felt, translated into something ‘To Be’.

But in fact, when I prayed to God at night and in my diaries to grant me ‘wings and a heart’ and the ability to really ‘know’ everyone in the whole world, much to my surprise, the Universe listened and gave me exactly what I asked for.


However, it didn’t occur in the way I could have imagined.

Because I know for certain I would not have answered, 'A Courtesan'. 'A Prostitute'.

(I can't imagine that being any little girl's dream.)

Never-the-less, I do spend my days and nights, not as a Doctor as my parents had hoped my ‘naughty’ actions had implied, but doing exactly what Katie and I had done way back when:
I touch, I feel, I delight in the reaction.
And the fascination never wanes.


Instead of saying "Be careful what you wish for."… I think the cliche should just say,

"Be specific!"


Be very, VERY specific.





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