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"EXPRESSION OF SILENCE"
By Madison A. Dante
CHAPTER TWO: DESIRE
It was morning and the sun was shining down reflecting it's light onto the snow. The house was cold and drafty so he curled up into a ball to try to keep the warmth in. He could feel Susanna's body laying at the far edge of the king size bed, her long red hair falling graceful over her slender nude body, but he couldn't find it in himself to reach over and pull her close to him. No, there was distance between them that went far greater that the few feet of the mattress. He could hear the muffled moans of sex being blasted from downstairs and he knew his roommate Charlie was up to his usual morning ritual of watching porn, jacking off and eating Captain Crunch cereal. He sighed as he pulled the rich burgundy covers off as his bare feet touched to cold wood of the floor and his nipples hardened with the chill.
He waited until he heard the moans end and BET come on before he went downstairs.
"Morn'n..." Charlie grumbled in his raspy as he walked past Michael and threw his used paper towel in the garbage. His short bone straight dark hair was covered by a baseball cap and he wore his usual attire of baggy sweats and dirty t-shirt that hung over his too thin frame loosely. Michael nodded in response and made a pot of coffee to wake up. He was never the morning person and didn't like to be up so early, but he had to because he was throwing an end of the school year barbeque to celebrate the ending of Kyle and Darnels senior year a semester earlier than Tommy`s. He heard the door open and an obnoxious laugh that Michael horned 'the drunken frat-boy laugh' that could only belong to Kyle flooded the kitchen.
"Sup man!" Charlie said to Kyle as he and Darnel walked in the kitchen and started going through the refrigerator. Michael looked over at the smiling Kyle and he hated what he saw. No, he didn't hate Kyle, no he was one of his best friends, but he hated the utter contentment that was on his face. That peaceful smile that incorporated into his dimples. His shaggy blonde hair thrown under a dingy gray wool hat against his bright glowing skin and glittering green Irish eyes. He was happy and Michael didn't like that. No, he was miserable inside so everybody else should be too, but that was selfish and deep down inside he didn`t meant that.
Kyle's cell phone began to ring and he grinned as he answered it. Michael watched as Kyle's short frame, barely over five foot four, walked out of the kitchen and into the hallway where he thought no one could hear him. He could hear Kyle using his deep voice that he only used when he was trying to pick up girls and Michael let a small smirk come across his face for reasons he didn't understand. Kyle told whatever `chick' he had on the phone that he loved them and would see them in a few hours before hanging up the phone and strolling back into the kitchen.
"Aye, Tommy's gonna be a couple hours late. His bullshit car is fucking up!" Kyle stated and Michael eyed him suspiciously. He had a lot of thoughts running throw his head, but it wasn't the right time to think about such unpleasantness . No, now was not the time because Susanna had just walked in with a bag of coal and he smiled as she greeted him with a kiss on his cheek.
He was alone again, up in his room which was the only place he could find solace. Susanna was off somewhere he didn't care to know, but he could hear Darnel and Charlie arguing about something a few feet away from his door and he hoped they wouldn't stop and come in because he didn't feel like talking to anyone. No, he wanted to close his eyes and stay under the warmth of the covers and think about his life and all the things that was wrong with it. Self pity is addictive, but he wasn't pitying himself. No, to pity yourself meant you had to feel bad for yourself and you can't feel anything when your emotions were as discontented as his. Lucky for him he could hear Darnel yelling that Charlie was a fucking scum bag and a few seconds later the down stairs door slammed shut only to be opened a second later then slammed shut again.
Good...he was finally alone again. His fingers started tingling again and he knew there was no way to fight it. No, he didn't even care about trying to fight it away anymore because he wanted to hurt...he loved the feeling. The door locked and Morrissey singing to the backdrop of The Smiths softly playing on the stereo "Asleep". He reached behind his dresser where he kept his stash of old and used razors. Most were dull now and would barley cut through paper, but he kept them anyway. Like a collection of sorrow's they were reminders of the one thing that bought him the sweetest pleasure and the purest pain, all at the same time. There were so many back there that it surprised him. He never really looked at them, he would just throw them back there when he was done. He wasn't worried about someone finding them because no one would have a reason to be looking behind his night stand. Fuck, Susanna was the one who always cleaned and if she hadn't found any in the three years they had been together, then no one would.
The sad piano music began to play and Michael closed his eyes longing for the sweet serenity of his blade. Lights off, he stripped and brought the razor to his upper thigh. He took in a deep breath and placed it down onto his pale alabaster skin...and pressed. He grunted slightly at the contact and dragged the blade upwards. It was almost beautiful the way the crimson slipped out and the slow leak that followed running down his thigh and unto his dark sheets. But, it wasn't enough. No, once was never enough so he looked for a fresh area to place his relief only there were none. No, his upper legs were completely scarred with the lines of his inner pain and his calves were the same, so he had to cut over one of his scars. That took a little more effort, but the pay off was the same.
His arms...they were fresh and clean; uncharted territory. He could do it there, but he was scared of what that would mean. No, he had been doing this for more than ten years and never had done his arms. No, that was for people with no self control and he had that. But, the sweet pure skin of his forearm was beckoning. The dark tattoo of a sword with a rose wrapped around it, a drunken mistake he had yet to regret, was the perfect place. He could cut inside there and the scar would be hidden by the dark inky shadows.
He breathed in deeply and could hear his heart thumping in his chest being echoed in his ears. Morrissey's deep crowning voice begging to be left asleep because he didn't want to wake up in this world anymore was exactly how Michael felt, so as he pressed the blade deeper into his flesh he wondered what it would feel like if he went a few inches further towards his wrist. Yeah, just a few inches to his wrist and he could be done with this. He could leave this awful world because as Morrissey sung, there must be a better world than the one he was living in. He wanted to be sung asleep because he was tired and wanted to go to bed and didn`t want to wake up again with the same feelings that made him want to go to sleep in the first place. He wanted someone to sing to him and then leave him alone so he could leave this awful place that was filled with so much pain and in the cell of his heart, he would be happy once he was gone.
He hadn't even realized that his hand had traveled to his wrist and the razor lay pressed at his pulse point. He suddenly became alert of that and only that as the sounds in his room were blocked out by the thumping of his heart beating to deadly beats in his chest. He should just do it he told himself. He could feel wetness on his face and was surprised that he was crying. No weak sounds of sorrow, just wet tears falling down unintentionally. That pissed him off for reasons he didn't understand fully. He hated to cry and so he pressed the blade on his wrist. He knew he had to pull upwards because that was the way to do it...to do it right anyway. You go up the road, not across the street.
He pressed and a drop of blood began to pour out so fast that it scared him. It usually took a few seconds for the blood to leak out on his legs, but at his wrist it was so quick and sudden that it shocked him to stop. He cursed as he jumped off his bed and began to pace around his room. Angry redden wet face, clothes off and naked. He could hear the downstairs door slam so he through his black sweat pants and sweat shirt back on just in case it was Susanna. He didn't want her to walk in on him naked because then she would see all of his scars up close. Yeah, he had been naked in front of her before and she never said anything about them, but he still wanted to be careful.
He looked in the mirror and tried to make himself look somewhat less frazzled. As he finger brushed his hair back he could see the small cut, no more than an inch, on his wrist was still dripping blood so he grabbed a sweat band cuff off his dresser and through it on. He could hear Tommy's deep voice call out, asking where the hell everyone was at. He took one final look at himself as he sprayed on cologne to try and cover up his smell. He was paranoid and thought that the scent of his sorrow could be smelled. Silly, yes, but he wasn't thinking clearly. It was as if as the day past, Michael was slowly losing touch with himself and the people around him, but he was so fucking good at acting that no one noticed.
"Tommy!" Michael stated as he walked to the refrigerator and took out lunch meat. Without fail, every time Tommy would come over the first thing he would grab was a sandwich. With the way that man ate, you would have thought him to way twice as much as his one hundred and fifty pound framed body. Michael was slightly thinner, but just as tall coming in at just under six feet. One could assume that Michael would have felt the need to apologize to him for how he acted the night before, but that's not how things worked with the group. Yeah, if you did something fucked up or really terrible, you said you were sorry that moment after it happened, but usually if whatever happened wasn't too bad, a night and a day would make things better and you just didn't talk about it again.
"Michael! Where the hell is everybody at?" Tommy asked as he walked next to him with two plates and two cups for them to pour there beer in. He had forgotten about the whole incident just like Michael knew he would. Fuck, that's just how things worked.
"I don't know? I think Darnel went to get his transcripts today."
"Okay. You know he'll start talking to some girl and forget about getting them again yet again." Tommy deadpanned and Michael actually looked over at him for the first time officially since he walked in. Michael always loved how Tommy looked with goatee short and trimmed; it showed off his face more. Tommy's cheeks were reddened from the cold afternoon January air, but that only made his brown eyes almond eyes appear warmer and the golden hue of his skin brighter. Michael found himself smiling for no reason, but when Tommy arched his eyebrow up at him inquisitively, he turned his attention back to putting the mayonnaise on the rolls.
"So, what did you do to your car this time?" He asked trying to steer the conversation in another direction. But, when Tommy didn't answer him he got worried and he turned to look at him, only Tommy's eyes weren't on him. No, they were looking down at the hand that Michael was using to spread the mayonnaise on the rolls with. He followed his gaze and saw that blood was dripping down from the black sweat band cuff he had put on. He dropped the knife and for a split second panicked and thought that he had been found out. But, then he remembered that no on knew...how could they, so he kept his face calm and actually threw on a smirk.
"What the fuck did you do to your arm?" Tommy asked and Michael smirked and before he could say `hurt it skating', his hand was inside of Tommy's and against his will he knew his skin was flushing with heat. Tommy had always had the affect on him. Well, Tommy and a few other guys, but with Tommy it was the most strong and Michael hated that. He thought he was a sick fuck for some of the thoughts he would have about Tommy. Yeah, jacking off while thinking about fucking someone who's one of your best friends was a pretty fucked thing to do in his opinion. Michael was uncomfortable with the way Tommy was holding his wrist up to his face attempting to examine the cut. He snatched his hand away before Tommy could take the sweat band cuff off.
"Skating bit my ass today!" Michael stated and Tommy looked at him like he was lying.
"Skating? You went skating today?"
"Yeah." Michael replied, not liking the disbelieving look on Tommy's face.
"Skating...in the snow?" Tommy deadpanned and Michael didn't like that look. No, that was the look he gave Charlie when he caught him lying about using drugs some years back. Michael thought quickly and the lies came out easy. When you spend most of your life lying and hiding yourself from people it becomes second nature.
"Fucker I know that! I was skating at the skate-park dip-shit!" Michael deadpanned and Tommy nodded understanding. Michael had dodged that bullet, but Tommy was still looking at him and Michael found himself grinning like an idiot for no reason. It was just Tommy was looking so cute in his black hooded sweatshirt over his head and loose light blue jeans tucked into brown work boots. Michael continued to apply the mayonnaise liberally on both sides of the bread as he looked sideways, smirk on his face mirrored by the smirking gleam of Tommy's eyes, and knew that he was falling for him all over again. There was this brief time some years ago while they were still in high school that Michael had began to fall for him, and fall hard he did.
He watched as Tommy's high school slut of girl-friend cheated and broke his heart in eleventh grade. That's when he and Tommy first started to get closer. They had all been friends since elementary school, he, Tommy, Darnel, Charlie and Kyle, but for some reason Tommy and Michael were never as close as they were with the others. But when Michael started to have feelings for him, weird feelings that made him ashamed and happy at the same time, he tried to get closer to Tommy and it worked. They went from hanging out in groups, to just with each other. The only problem with that was his feelings began to grow stronger and stronger for Tommy with each passing day and for a while, he thought that maybe Tommy was starting to feel the same way towards him. Foolish, yes, but Michael didn't think he was imagining the secret smiles that Tommy would give him or the lingering touches or prolonged laughs to jokes that really weren`t all that funny. But then right before their senior of high school Tommy started to date a new girl and actually looked happy with her. Michael let his feelings dimmer out a little, but they never completely went away. They lingered for years and years and as he watched Tommy take a sip from his beer filled cup and grin back at him with his rosy cheeks, he wondered if maybe Tommy knew how he felt.
"What?" Tommy laughed in that scratchy voice that let Michael know he was only a few hours away from being completely sick with the flu.
"Nothing man." Michael laughed back and Tommy shook his head grinning. Michael looked at him again and Tommy's laughter increased.
"WOULD YOU MAKE THE DAMN SANDWICHES!" Tommy screamed through his smile and Michael couldn't help thinking back to the time in high school when they accidentally got locked in a supply room closet. Michael smiled and handed Tommy a turkey sub and they walked to the table and stood as they began to eat. Occasionally Tommy would look over at him and smile which made Michael smile and ask `what?', but only receiving goofy grins for answers. It was a two way street as Tommy would ask `what?" every time Michael would get caught staring too. The door to the kitchen creaked opened flooding the room with the bright light of the early afternoon sun and Darnel and Kyle came strolling in. Like a force being pulled Tommy dropped his sandwich on the plate and went over to a grinning Kyle.
"Hey Tommy!" Kyle exclaimed.
"Kyle!" Tommy yelled back and the two of them walked off into the living room leaving Michael behind watching them. Darnel was trying to cut away the half of the sandwich that Tommy had left and was mumbling something about how they should clean out the driveway. But, Michael wasn't hearing any of that. No, his eyes were focused on the animated way that Tommy was talking to Kyle and how he had his arm reached over in front of him so his hand was resting on Kyle's smaller shoulder. Michael felt a tight knot form in his stomach as he saw the way Kyle grinned up at him and gave him a shy smile. No, that wasn't right he thought to himself. No, that was wrong and it should have been him standing were Kyle was...but it wasn't. No, the sad reality was Michael wasn't completely sure what he was seeing, but he knew what he wouldn't ever see. He wouldn't ever see himself with Tommy because that brought on way too many complications. Complications that he blamed his cousin Steve for. His fingers started to tingle again and he need relief...relief that he knew he could find behind his night stand. He didn't bother announcing that he would be right back. No, Darnel was on his cell phone and Tommy and Kyle were laughing about something that they weren't sharing. He passed Charlie on the stairs, but he ignored him as Charlie stared at him curiously. He went inside his bedroom, closed the door and took a deep breath as he reached behind his dresser for his box of bladed love. His legs were of no use anymore...no they had too many scars...but his arms...his arms were bare. He closed his eyes as he pressed down his comfort and sighed with the sweet crimson relief spilling down...
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(c) Madison Dante 2005
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