Author: Jaydee Faire PM
In a down and dirty city where a good time is just a few dollars away, a dancer who's looking for life and a whore who's already given it up come to an arrangement with only one rule: No Love Allowed. Rated M for homosexual intercourse, graphic scenes.Rated: Fiction M - English - Romance - Chapters: 49 - Words: 124,156 - Reviews: 571 - Favs: 394 - Follows: 405 - Updated: 05-09-13 - Published: 11-15-07 - id: 2439032
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A man is looking at me.
Several men, actually. They're sitting at a table not far from where I am, drinking and watching me. A waiter approaches them and they're temporarily distracted, eyeing his painted body and flashy hair ornaments, but as soon as he refreshes their mixers and leaves, their eyes stray back to me.
I smile at them, moving my hips to one side, then the other. The angel inside me pulses twice; my body moves with it, shuddering, and I close my eyes for a moment as the feeling passes.
One of the men at the table gestures to his companion, leans over to whisper something in his ear. His friend is very drunk, eyes glassy and mouth slack. He nods sleepily, eyes drooping shut. The lights above us spin and flash, bathing the men first in purple, then red, then yellow light.
It's Friday, and the men are most likely from the business district a few blocks away, come to drink away the tensions of the day. And, of course, to watch me dance.
I'm standing in the middle of an iron cage, just wide enough to hold me. I'm naked except for a pair of thong underwear that barely does the job of covering me. My erection is pressing painfully against the front; one twist of the leg and it'll pop right out. It's happened to me before, but not for a few years, not since I was a novice on the floor.
All around me, appearing and disappearing in the strobing lights, there are other cages, holding other people, each with their own group of admirers. The place is packed tonight: more businessmen like my table, Frat boys from the university across town, a few groups of middle – aged women sipping martinis and giggling to each other.
I sneak a glance at the timer embedded in the top of the cage, out of the customers' sight. Five minutes until my shift is over. I look down just in time to see one of the men get up from the table and come towards me. I smile down at him. He's a tall man: the platform that my cage is on barely comes up to his chest. He grins back at me and beckons me closer. I shake my head and turn my back on him, swaying to the music and spreading my legs to give him a nice view of my ass.
"Come talk to me," the man is saying, voice raised to be heard over the music. "Come down here and say hello."
I shake my head again. It's against company policy for dancers to talk with customers; we're decoration and entertainment, not dinner companions. Besides, it would be next to impossible to carry on a normal conversation with the lights pulsing and the music pumping like it is.
I turn back to the man, putting on a little private show for him, lifting one leg and bracing it against the bars while I move. The angel pulses again, and my hips jerk involuntarily. I try to make it look natural, leaning backwards and thrusting my hips slowly. Other men have come over to watch. I walk my feet up the bars and turn all the way over, standing on my hands and spreading my legs wide. I can feel sweat dripping down my back. Isn't it time for me to go in yet? The motion of my hips, coupled with hanging upside down, is causing the front of the thong to rub against my erection. I'm short of breath.
The tall man reaches up to touch my leg. Usually I would shake him off and press the call button so security could give him a lecture, but I can't reach it from where I am. Besides, it's just a leg. I've had men—and women—try worse while I was in here.
Finally, I hear a click as the timer goes off. Relieved, I turn over to sit cross – legged on the floor of the cage, smiling at the men as the floor lowers me down to the dark, cool basement under the bar.
There are two people waiting for me: a replacement dancer, smoothing lotion onto his legs before stepping into my place in the cage, and Rick, one of the Keepers. Rick helps me up; as soon as I've stepped off the platform, the replacement is lifted up onto the bar level for his shift.
Rick tugs my thong down to my knees and taps me on the back to bend over. When I do, he shoves two fingers into my anus, fishes around for a moment, and retrieves a small, metallic device covered in lubricant. He tosses it into a bucket of sanitizer at his feet. "There, it's out," He says, patting me on the shoulder.
I straighten up. "I think that thing is malfunctioning," I say, rolling my shoulders. "The pulses were pretty damn random. Maybe it needs a new battery."
"I'll look at it," Rick says, in a tone that means he'll forget about it completely by the end of the next shift.
I kick off my thong and toss it into the laundry basket by the door, then walk naked into the brightly – lit hallway. There are more people there, mostly second – shifters spreading lotion or oil onto their bodies. There are a lot of young men like me, and some women, sitting on a long bench and spreading lipstick on their nipples to make them stand out more in the darkness of the bar.
I head past them to the showers, a huge, tiled, echoey place filled with steam and laughter and conversation. It's the end of the first shift, and the place is crowded with tired, sweaty dancers, lined up shoulder – to – shoulder under sprays of hot water.
I find a place between a young woman with long blonde hair and small, pointy breasts and a dark – skinned male dancer named Coker. He smirks at me as I step in beside him; the woman moves over to make more room. "Going anywhere special tonight?" Coker asks, jostling me with a soapy elbow.
"Home," I say tiredly, leaning forward to pump powdered soap from the dispenser on the wall. The stuff is cheap and makes my skin itch, but I'd rather not go home smelling like I do. "Maybe stop at that noodle place on the way."
"Oh come on," Coker says, punching me on the shoulder. "It's Fri – day! The night is young!" He rocks his hips from side to side. "I think I'm gonna go out dancing."
"That'd be a change," I say, rolling my eyes. "It's not like you dance for six hours straight five days of the week."
Coker is sluicing water through his thick hair. When it dries, it'll be silky and curly, disorderly in a way that's unbelievably sexy and makes him look like a latin pop star. I eye it jealously. "I'm gonna go out and find me some fine piece of ass to take home," Coker says, leaning back and closing his eyes. "They're ripe for the picking out there, I tell you."
"Male or female?" I ask boredly, scrubbing under my arms.
"Either," Coker shrugs. "Both." He flashes his white smile at me. "Wanna come?"
I shake my head. "I told you, I'm going home and going to sleep."
"You're boring, Kaz," Coker frowns, stepping out from under the shower and allowing another dancer to take his place. "I'm going to the Black – Leaf club first, if you change your mind. Meet me there."
I don't bother to watch him leave. "Yeah, okay."
It takes me a few more minutes to finish washing. When I'm done, I walk to the towel rack and find a wrap that doesn't look like it's been used too many times tonight, and rub the excess moisture off my skin. I go from there to my locker, one of many crowded in the hallway near the stairs to the main level. I dress hurriedly and retrieve my bag, then make my way upstairs.
The stairs come out just to the left of the theatre stage, in a dark little alcove that has a good view of the stage. To my right is a glowing EXIT sign, a door leading out onto the street, but I ignore it for the moment and watch the show going on in front of me.
There are two men on the stage, one behind the other. Scattered around them are little props that make the empty space resemble a bedroom: a nightstand and a lamp, a table with drinks scattered on it. One man, the smaller and paler of the two, is bent over a cot made up like a bed, with the other man thrusting his cock up his ass.
"Oh, yes. Oh, yes," the smaller man is gyrating his hips, licking his lips. The other man grunts with pleasure, leaning his head back. Just past them, beyond the glare of the stage lights, I can see the audience, mostly men in their forties, watching silently. I turn my gaze back to the couple on stage.
I know it's scripted, and I know they're both just acting, moving while thinking about their grocery list and wondering when their next break is, just like I do while dancing, but there's something about the acts performed on the stage that always turns me on. Maybe it's the openness of it, fucking in front of a hundred – fifty perfect strangers, everything exposed, nothing to hide behind but your own skin.
The man on top begins to stroke his partner's erection, and the tone of the pale man's moans changes, grows higher, almost a whimper, and he bucks his hips twice before coming into the man's hand, panting.
I can feel myself getting hard, and quickly let myself out into the cool air of the street. The door shuts behind me, taking all the sounds of the theatre with it, and my ears ring for a moment before they adjust to the night-sounds of the city. I check my watch; it's almost one in the morning. Plenty of time to grab something to eat on my way home before the shops out here close.
My apartment is only about a dozen blocks from the bar; less if I take a few shortcuts, but at this time of night—morning—I'd rather not risk it. I shrug my bag over my shoulder and start off down the street.
The noodle restaurant—China Bowl, I think it's called—is nearly empty, and the busboys are putting the chairs up, but the owner is used to seeing me come in around this time and greets me with a smile. I order my usual bowl of thick, greasy noodles and a beer, and sit down at a small table to eat.
It's nice here, quiet, but not silent: the owner is watching a novella in the kitchen, the busboys have finished with the chairs and are sweeping up, talking quietly amongst themselves. I exhale slowly through my nose and close my eyes, and the weariness of the day settles over me like a heavy coat.
I really can't understand how Coker can want to go out to a club after a shift as long and hard as ours. Maybe I'm old. Coker's a few years younger than me, seventeen or eighteen at most, but he'd only been working at the bar for a few months at most. I imagine him down at the Black – Leaf Club, dancing to the music, smiling at the girl next to him, taking hits off of the Club's famous Black – Leaf cigarettes and passing them to the next person, feeling the high lift him off his feet.
How long had it been since I'd done anything more exciting than buy a bottle of tequila after work?
I sigh heavily, poking at the dregs of noodles at the bottom of the bowl with my chopsticks. I don't know why I should be jealous of Coker. It isn't as if I want to go clubbing; I don't like the scene, don't like the kids that frequent them, hate the fruity drinks, the smoke, the pills that get passed around. That's what I tell myself, anyway, as I leave a tip on the table and continue on my way home.
It's past two now, by my watch. The streets are quiet, but not deserted at this time of night. Most people are on their second bar or club right now, if they haven't already staggered home for an early night. The crowds won't be back out until around three thirty, looking for a new place to go, or someone to go home with.
There are only a few people prowling around right now as I turn off the main street down towards the cluster of buildings my apartment is in. They stand in groups of twos and threes—not many people want to be on this street alone at night—and I don't make eye contact. Prostitutes stand in pools of yellow lamplight and glance at me as I walk by. I recognize a few of them, and I'm sure they know me: I've walked down this way for more years than I care to remember.. They know better than to bother with me.
You're boring, Kaz.
I grimace. Getting head—with some unpronounceable disease— from an unlicensed whore wouldn't make me exciting, I think irritably. It'd make me stupid.
There's a liquor store a block and a half from my place. That bottle of tequila's sounding better with every step. I pick up the pace, shrugging my bag closer.
This close to the red light district, the prostitutes still have a little variety: the girls standing in front of Mr. H's Liquor are dressed exotically, mimicking the order – girls at the Starlight Circus bordello just down the street from where I work. Short skirts, colorful tights, patent – leather boots and lots of costume jewelry. They watch me walking towards them and turn on me like a pack of hyenas.
"Hey, Mister, are you lookin' for fun?" A girl waves a wad of papers in my face; she's got bright pink hair and gold hoop earrings the size of my fist. "I'm licensed. Fresh off the press, mister, so clean you could eat off me." She winks.
I push past her. "No," I say simply, keeping a firm grasp on my bag. I spend a few minutes inside the store, pointing out the bottle I want for the owner, then shove the bottle in its brown paper bag inside my bag and head back out, head down.
"We can tell you're lonely." This girl's eyes and lips are painted blue, with blue and white scales on her cheeks. "What'cha doin', walking down here all alone?"
"No," I snap, shoving her away from me. "Push off. If you're really licensed, I can have you written up for harassing me."
She pouts her blue lips. "I weren't harassing you. Just asking a question, lonely boy."
I ignore her, hurrying off down the street. I can see my apartment building; the street light in front's gone out again. I dig my keys out of my pocket and grip them in my hand, to have them ready to unlock my door, or jam into the eye of anyone who gets too close to me in the dark.
There's a man standing outside my building, lingering just to the right of the driveway. I eye him suspiciously. He's half in shadow, the lit cigarette in his hand a bright, zig zagging light as he takes a drag then jerks the filter out of his mouth as if he thinks it's disgusting. He's skinny, leaning on one bony hip as he watches me pass.
He might be a prostitute. Male escorts aren't unusual, especially in this part of the city. In the red light district and to the West of it, where bars of all kinds line the streets, boy whores are called "Candy Canes": skinny, sweet in the mouth and gone before long.
But Candy Canes usually frequent gay bars, or move in groups for protection like the girls down at the liquor store. This guy is alone, in the middle of a block instead of at an intersection or near a business, and in jeans and a faded "Mr. Tassy's Happy Funtime" t-shirt, he certainly isn't dressed like a working boy. I expect him to call out to me, at least, to ask me to invite him in for some fun, but he doesn't do that, either. He just watches me, smoking jerkily and occasionally glancing down the street as if looking for someone else.
Maybe he's a dealer. I pick up the pace, eager to get away from him.
I start up the darkened stairs leading to my apartment, resolving for the hundredth time to make the landlord fix the overhead light. Halfway up the stairs, I take a last look at the man in the driveway: he's staring out at the street again, lighting another cigarette.
A few more steps takes me to the front door of my apartment. I jam the key in the lock, kick the bottom hinge, and shoulder the door open. It sticks for a moment, then gives suddenly, causing me to stumble over the threshold and step into the pile of mail that had been shoved over the door. Cursing and kicking envelopes, I shut the door and lock it.
There is a moment of silence, broken only by the faint humming of my refrigerator. I realize I've been holding my breath and exhale slowly, feeling my heartbeat slow. Then I wrinkle my nose and toss my bag on the couch, shaking my head. Come on, Kaz, you've faced worse than this. It was just some skinny little piece of shit, probably waiting on a ride. Not a drug dealer or a member of the mafia or a space alien come to abduct you. I stoop to pick up the mail and flip through it while I walk into the kitchen to see if that take – out is still any good. What reason have you got to be so paranoid? It's not like your life is a whirlwind of fun anyway. The only difference between alive and dead is that you get to sleep in more.
I push the thought away. Morbid. Half the mail I've gotten is junk, catalogues and letters in yellow envelopes swearing that I could win a million gold notes, provided I subscribe to a hundred magazines and back flip through miles of red tape. There's also a postcard from my mother, vacationing on the beach a thousand miles away. Dear Kazzie, I'm having a great time, met someone new, I think it's really serious. When are you going to come visit me again? Love, your Mommy.
I smile and toss the card onto the coffee table with a dozen others from various places. My mother's never been married but insists that I don't follow in her footsteps. "Find someone nice, settle down," she's always telling me, while straightening my hair and picking lint off of my shoulder. "When are you going to bring some grandchildren home to your poor old mother?" I always joke that if I did, there wouldn't be anyone there to see them: since retiring, she's been determined to travel around the world, only coming home for a few weeks at a time to sort through mail and water the plants. She sends me postcards from exotic places and pictures of her, tanned face grinning under a huge straw hat. She calls me her little Kazzie and always tells me how proud of me she is.
She doesn't know I'm a dancer in a fetish club, that I'm in a cage stripped to my skivvies with an electronic stimulator shoved up my ass, grinding and writhing for horny businessmen. She thinks I work at a bank.
I slump down on the couch and dig the remote out of the cushions, flipping on the TV. An infomercial for a new blender – chopper – fryer – cleaner comes on, bleaching away all the shadows in the room and filling my vision with pink, smiling faces. Once, there would have been someone waiting for me when I got home, warm arms and gentle purr of a voice, pulling me into bed. But not now. Not anymore. Not ever again.
I dig in my bag for the bottle of tequila, twist off the cap, and pour the liquid down my throat.