By: Adam Nisivoccia
Gemini is the sign of the twins. It is the opposing forces of a single personality; the good and the bad, bipolar disorder and/or schizophrenia. It is represented as the Tarot cards Justice, the Lovers, and the Chariot.
The phoenix is a bird birthed from fire, only to die again and once again be reborn. It is the cycle of life, death, and resurrection. It is shown as the Wheel of Fortune, the Hanged Man, and Death in Tarot decks.
I feel betrayed by God. I was meant to be the one thing I'm not. It's like he wanted me to suffer by the curse he bestowed me with. I can only link how I feel to the Tarot cards The Empress, the Hermit, and the Devil…
I've always felt different. I just felt wrong… maybe incomplete? I don't know what I felt but, it wasn't settling within me.
I knew I was lying to everyone. I always known there was something unusual with me. I never knew exactly what to call it. It was this annoying presence in my life.
It was this hovering ambiguity. The ambiguity was this all present emotion of the lack of understanding a part of me. It was just this bothersome presence, like a ghost, haunting me all the time.
I started understanding it after I had turned thirteen. I finally started to get the ghost of myself, when things start to go crazy. That was when I knew, for sure, that I was suffering from this quasi-split personality disorder. But, I knew it wasn't schizophrenia.
I personally wanted to blame it on the new hormones blazing through my veins. It was the lighting strike of pubescent testosterone that pranced like some model on a catwalk. But an overhaul on testosterone wouldn't want someone to not be themselves, then again it's possible.
My parents had known what it was. They saw it in me when I was younger. They understood that I wasn't going to be the dream child they had pictured, when I was conceived. I wasn't going to give them everything they expected to receive from their child. I was their fallible being that messed up their plans… a lot.
Hell… It's not like I planned on wanting to be a girl though.
"Angel, what is theme of Thanatopsis?" my junior English teacher asked me.
Angel… a name perfect for me. Neither male nor female, just like the angels themselves; androgynous.
"The theme of Thanatopsis? Um… that Death is a part of life?" I answered.
Death is a part of life. The Wheel of Fortune. A part of you must die in order to be reborn. The Death card. Resurrection, the Hanged Man; the phoenix of the deck.
"Yes. You make a good point. That's what Bryant wants the reader to get. He wanted them to see that death is… well, not as bad as it's made out to be. The key to understanding the Light Romantics is that they think, 'You don't die alone.' They tend to believe that Life is lonely."
"Like in those commercials when they say a number of people die a day from whatever?" someone announced.
"Yes. Something along the lines of that."
"So, the Light Romantics saw things differently," I began, "Like they knew that higher powers have ulterior motives for humans? That the humans must seek faith to only understand themselves through self-discovery? That higher powers have given people beauty in nature and that humans should seek this ubiquitous beauty and not the mainstream image?"
"Yes! Angel! Exactly like that,"
I spaced out after answering, like I do in every class. I answer what I know and then let go. I give my two cents and take them back just as quick.
When I spaced out, I thought about what I want to look like. How my full girl version would be. Would she be similar to the person I am now, or a whole different entity?
I came to the theory that I'm like the Beast. You know the fairy tale with the Beauty and she becomes engaged to the creature in the abandoned castle. The creature that's colder than the winter the maiden is entrapped in the castle. The two protagonists are almost like twins in their opposing demeanors and appearances.
Twins… Gemini. Balancing forces. The Justice card. Harmony; the Lovers. Subconscious verses conscious, opposing energies… the Chariot.
When I'm in school, or anywhere without friend, I'm like Beast. I'm very mean. Speak only when spoken to. Very reserved. The best listener, I'll hear anyone out until their breath no longer exists…
That night I thought about it again. My mind was running over all of the conceived images. It raced at this perfection I had developed. Yet, I got flashes of all of those really obvious-looking transsexuals.
The big question now is… when will I become me? The girl? At this point, I just wanted the full blown surgery. I was on the hormones since I was thirteen. I had gotten all of the psychological tests. I'm ready for it. I just have to wait till I graduate from high school, which is in a few months.
But, I don't want to wait. I want to be the girl with the ambitions to be famous. I want to be the girl with the thoughts of kissing pretty boys and getting away with the benefits. I need to be the girl that just wants to be that, a girl and be happy, for once, in my body.
For now, she is left to feel caged. Her tendencies want to bask in the light of humanity yet, constricted by humanity as well. Her voice and thoughts are perceived as a burden.
My friend Marshal called shortly after and told me about the most perfect place. Many people dress up and parade around in corsets and such, very glam personas. Their lives were jumping from weekend to weekend. He said I'd love going to see The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
"Why would I like it?"
"You'd get to be you. The people there are like or into that."
"Really? I'd get to be the real Angel?"
This information intrigued me. It was a place where everyone has dressed like the opposing gender. The Rocky Horror Picture Show was a place that housed people similar to me but, not taking it as far as I do.
So, what did I do? I went. I went with Marshal to the random little theater to go see The Rocky Horror Picture Show. How I was not supposed to go?
At midnight, we went into the theater. People of all ages, ethnicities, and cliques filled the aisles. There were Goths and Punks and the Ghetto Fabulous and Preps all enclosed in a movie theater.
I went in not knowing what to expect. I held the goodie bag that I was given on my entrance. A bag of rice, a small roll of toilet paper, a small water gun and a bag of toast scraps were to be thrown about at the appropriate times.
Marshal drew an intricate V upon my head to proclaim my virginity of The Rocky Horror Picture Show experience. For the time being, we were bopping to some oldies that were being played. I was on a high.
"C'mon out all you virgins!" the guy Bob who ran the whole thing shouted.
I went onto the stage with at least twenty people in my wake. There I was with the lights acting as a tanning bed. I knew no one up there with me. I was in a row full of random people with V's written on their heads.
"Who's a coward? If you are step forward,"
I looked out and Marshal sent me this glare. So, I stepped forward with seven other people. We all looked at each other, and there was one face I recognized. We had no idea of what was going to happen to us.
Where did he come from?
"You lay down,"
I did as instructed. I lay down upon the dirty stage floor. I look up and there's the guy from school kneeling at my knees.
Next, this girl runs by us pouring conversation hearts on my pelvic region. The people alongside me look at each other. We have some idea of what's to come.
"Okay, enjoy the candy!"
The guy at me knees buried his face in my crotch. He's nibbling the candy off of me. To my surprise, I start laughing. It was actually quite funny if you think about it.
The candy girl returns and dumps the whole bag of conversation hearts upon me. The guy is eating all the candy with his mouth, following the other couples. His hands are behind his back.
This is so fucking sketchy, it isn't even funny.
"You guys know that you could've used your hands," Bob announced as my guy finished the candy, "Now… all of you get off the stage!"
I returned to my seat. Marshal laughed as I sat down. I couldn't believe he made me do such a thing. I wouldn't have minded if it was a stranger but, it was this really hot guy from school.
"Angel?" a voice behind me questioned.
"Yeah," I said nonchalantly, turning around.
The really hot guy, Jackal, was looking back at me. His black hair was in a faux hawk. His blue eyes locked with my baby blues. I would've never expected him to be looking, let alone talking to me, here out of all places.
"What are you doing after this?" Jackal asked.
"Nothing. I'm going home,"
"Well, after this, I'm going to the party at Josh Brook's. Wanna come along?"
"Sure," and then I looked at Marshal, "No wait, I can't. Marshal brought me here and I can't ditch him."
"No Angel, go. I'm going to be too tired after this. Go ahead," Marshal added.
"No I can't,"
"Yeah Angel, listen to Marshal. Come with me to the party," Jackal pleaded.
"Fine, I'll go with you,"
"Fine," Jackal said jumping over and into the seat next to mine.
After the movie, Jackal took my hand and led me downstairs to the lobby. I just went with his actions. This was the closest thing to a date, ever.
"Ready to go?" he asked.
"Yeah, just hold on."
I walked away from him. I had found Marshal chatting it up with some people. I said my goodbyes and left with Jackal.
We walked to his car. The night air had filled me with energy; despite it was three in the morning. I felt alive, like this was a taste of what my life will become once everything is done.
The car ride was very quiet. I had nothing to say. I was too nervous to bring myself to speak.
Yet, he was quiet too. In school, he always had something cocky to say. But, I guess without a crowd, he can't speak either.
The radio played some musical genre I never heard of. I couldn't even tell you the instruments used. It was something I'd normally not listen to either. But, I didn't want to offend Jackal in any way.
He pulled up in front of the house. I couldn't believe that people were still entering and exiting the party. I wasn't sure if I wanted to go any more.
We exited and headed towards the front door. Hand in hand, Jackal led me around partygoers. Next I knew we were standing in the kitchen, our empty hands holding those big cliché plastic red cups.
I brought the cup to my lips. The dark liquid was carbonated and funky tasting. It burned all the way down my parched esophagus.
"Don't drink it too fast, or else it'll all hit you at once," Jackal advised.
"Why? What is it?"
"It's a mixed drink."
"I think some JD, and some SoCo, and Coke."
"Is that good?"
"It's a classic Jack and Coke with a twist."
"This is you're first drink, isn't it?"
"No. Why?" I lied.
"It's okay if it is. Everyone has to have their first. Just don't drink too much. Also, if you move onto beer, don't go back and drink anything harder."
"I'll make a note of that."
We moved out of the kitchen and onto the patio. I looked up to one of the windows of the house. Some shadows moved in frantic ways. I returned to the cup in my hand.
"How you feelin'?" Jackal asked.
"Dandy. I like this. I want more."
"What do you want?"
"Anything. Everything. All of it!" I laughed.
"Whatever you want. Your wish is my command."
I stood outside, staring at the stars. I thought about that fairy tale again. I remembered how the Beauty found the house in the woods, her sanctuary from the night. And the Beast she had found inside. The Beast she feared to death.
"Here you go,"
"What is it?" I asked, while stacking my cups. I finished my first one, "Is it going to fuck me up?"
"It's a Cosmopolitan. A girl's drink. And no, it won't fuck you up."
"Whatever you say." I toasted myself.
What is it with the drinks and the burning? Each one was harsher than the last. The buzzing filled my head. The music and the night and Jackal made me want to live.
We returned to the house. A deep skunk scent filled my nose. A mass of red glass eyed kids crammed on a couch, tendrils of smoke leaking from their mouths.
"What are they doing?" I whispered.
"Getting high." He said so simply.
This is the double life of my peers. I can't see why people do that for fun. Then again, who am I to speak? I'm drinking.
We moved to the family room. Music pumped out of the audio system. I could see the speakers thumping due to the bass.
Some people were dancing. Some people were smoking cigarettes. Someone had even fallen asleep on one of the couches. The majority were making out. I had felt like an alien before, and this didn't make that feeling any better.
I started dancing, letting the music flood me. Jackal restricted himself to me. He stood in the distance talking to his friends. I noticed the way he indicated my presence many times.
After Jackal had unloaded a few drinks into himself, he came over to me. His body was like that of a scarecrow; long, lanky, falling over himself. Jackal had led me upstairs with him, into one of the many bedrooms. I thought he was going to trip and crack his skull.
"Shit Angel, why are you so fucking nice and shit?"
"I don't know."
"Why are you so nice to me?"
"Because… because, I am in your debt."
"What the fuck are you talking about? Being in my debt?"
"In eighth grade you stopped two guys that were picking on me in gym class."
"I did? Really?"
"And that's why you're in my debt?"
"Exactly. Ever since you stopped those guys, I've always thought of you as…"
"As a prince, kinda."
"Me? A prince?"
"Look, I know it's stupid. Please, don't tell any one!"
"Chill. I'm not gonna tell anyone anything," assured Jackal.
I relaxed, my body melting into the bed. The promised secrecy of one of my many secrets brought me great pleasure. Yet, it bothered me that Jackal knew.
My enjoyment was only heightened. My thoughts were interrupted by a sensation on my mouth. I followed the fingers that connected to the Adonis-like arm which linked to Jackal's body. I couldn't move.
"You know Angel, you're very pretty."
Pretty… such a feminine word. Wait? He called me pretty!
"Like when I first saw you, I got the biggest hard-on. I was like 'God if you love me, let me fuck her!' I want you so bad."
Here it was, 4:30 a.m. on a Sunday and I was at a party. The hottest guy I know is confessing to wanting me. What can I do in my very awe-inspiring situation? Give in, of course!
I straddled Jackal. My arms encircled his neck, pulling my head in. His hands were sliding up and down my thighs. His tongue lured me into Hell, enchanting my heart's demise.
I felt a tinge of guilt for using Jackal like that. But, it was great. The way he touched me, elevated my understanding of sexual emotions. I'm not going to deny myself of physical attention because my partner is drunk and willing.
"You've got really soft skin," Jackal said, his warm hands under my skirt.
I couldn't bring myself to speak. Everything coming out of my mouth was just sounds; moans and hums that made no sense. My body condemned to Hell with his lips creating fire-erupting kisses.
"Angel, can I…" Jackal whispered with wandering fingers, "Please Angel, just let me."
His hand swept up the remainder of my thigh. Fingers had intertwined with the waistband of my panties. Warm fingers were inching the black lace downward.
Oh my Goddess! What's he gonna do when he finds out! Holy fucking shit!
"Angel, what's wrong?"
"We can't do this!"
"There's nothing wrong about it."
"Yes! There's something wrong! There is there is there is!"
"Whoa, calm yourself.
"I'm not ready!" the lie rolled off my lips.
"Okay okay. It's okay. We'll take things slow."
Within nanoseconds, Jackal's lips were pressed onto mine. His tongue was praising me in a fanatic glory. His hand crept up my back.
I was reveling in his body. Warmth was crawling up my spine. Rough fingers grazed my spinal cord.
My body arched to his touch. The sensation of his skin on my skin was divine. Who would've thought that nerve endings were sensitive enough to react to someone else's touch?
His hand shifted, now resting on my stomach. His fingers were inching towards my chest. I was so enjoying the groping.
Thank Goddess, those are at least real.
I heard the unclasping of my bra. I slipped out of my upper layers, letting myself be topless in front of someone. It was weird, being half naked with an audience. I thought he might see a nonexistent scar from my surgery, and then this happiness would end.
"So beautiful, like a fucking goddess, beautiful."
So… this is how Hermaphrodites felt when she was born. This is how the Beauty felt everyday of her life.
I took off Jackal's shirt. His body was that of a normal boy; long lean cut. I pulled him into me. I kissed his neck, unleashing emotions so new to me.
My vision started to take a dreamy quality to it. The edges, my peripheral, clouded up. Everything seemed slow and shifty, borderline sketchy.
"Are you really sure you're not ready?" Jackal asked sounding so innocent compared to the brazen question.
"Well… um… You're… the way you are."
"I don't know. Just forget I asked."
We sat there for a minute, not knowing what to do. It was a weird situation. Hell, I wish I had some idea of what to do in my current predicament.
Jackal kneeled before me. He took my face into his hands. He kissed my forehead.
"Are you leaving me?" I asked.
He gave me a butterfly kiss.
Jackal nuzzled his nose against mine.
"Not for a while."
He pulled me up, so we were at an equal height. We kissed and fell back onto the bed. I was like a porcelain doll awakened by his lust.
Why do I want him so much? What is it about? There's something oddly magnetic about him, and I don't know what the fuck it is. But, I will find out.
We had stopped kissing. We just laid there on the bed. I couldn't pull myself away from him. I didn't want to be separated from him. I allowed myself to cling to Jackal's body.
I let myself enjoy the moment. Our eyes had locked in that moment. I felt, with that stare, that I had melted into him. I was like ice cubes thrown into fresh magma.
Jackal pulled me into him but, I playfully resisted. I got up, found my bra, put it on, and returned. I got cold and needed something, other than Jackal, to cover me.
When I crawled under the blankets, Jackal once again drew me into him. The warmth of the sheets lured me back into his arms. I was cocooned by body heat, bed coverings, and hormones.
"Where's this going to go?" I asked.
"What do you mean?"
"What's going to happen after tonight? Will this go anywhere? Tell me now."
I have to know. I need to know. I can't live knowing that I had gone through this and have it go nowhere. This was big for me!
"I don't know. I didn't think that far ahead."
"Well, do you want something serious?"
"I don't know."
"How do you not know? Don't you know how you feel?"
"I… just don't know."
"What do you think of me?"
"Just answer the question."
"I like you a lot. You're very hot."
"But… you don't know what you want from me?"
"Well… I guess that's what I feel."
"Then we should stop what we're doing, until you know what you want."
"Why should I entertain you? Huh? I'm wouldn't be getting anything out of this. I would only be your piece of ass!"
"I don't know. I really just don't know what I want!"
"Do you want something deep?"
"Do you want a one night stand?"
"You can't make a choice, can you?"
"Never was able to make a choice."
I closed my eyes and the Lovers card flashed in my mind. It spun around in circles. The depiction of Adam and Eve with the angel above them was a great image. But the distorted Garden of Eden with the tempting snake was not as friendly. The meaning of the card was blurring with each turn.
Love, hate, choice, no choice, love, hate, choice, no choice…
The Empress popped out at me. So beautiful she was upon her throne. The queen had her regal air and long hair. A strong symbol of femininity she was with her specter and bountiful garden.
Feminine energy, good fortune, success…
The Devil appeared last. The twisted image of the monstrous being that was perched like a bird. The shackled Adam and Eve stood at his feet with longing faces. He grinned at the downfall of humanity.
Sin, addiction, bonded freedom, sin…
I huffed and left the bed. I grabbed my shirt and yanked it on in my anger. I couldn't believe him. The whole conversation was surreal. The idea of what he had said made no sense whatsoever.
I looked at him hard. I gave Jackal what I thought was the "death stare". I wanted him to die within that moment in time. I really hoped that looks could be deadly, because I was glaring swords at his face.
Yet, his bare chest, that thin thing he called a body, still had a hold on me. Those bright eyes of his lured me back to the bed. Those lips I kissed, those hands that groped, that mouth that tasted like liquor had such power over me, that I had to leave.
"Angel," he said in the dreamy voice of his.
I knew I was weakening my shields, "Yeah?"
"Come back. We can discuss this later. Just have fun,"
Was I willing enough to fall back into the bed? Was I caught up in some teenage cliché fantasy, where I can get what I want? Could Jackal's charms be stronger than my personal barricades? Will I ever be the person I want to be?
"If you really wanted me, you'd wait till I'm ready," I retorted, as I opened the door.
I walked out of the room and back into the party. The hallway seemed different than before. I think it was the moaning coming out of the room next door.
At least someone's getting what they wanted.
I struggled down the stairs. My feet were not steady due to the drinks. I stopped and rubbed my eyes. The marijuana scent made my head whirl. Cigarette smoke cluing to my throat, actually making me cough.
I continued. My hands were cautiously groping the banister. Music bumped in a fanatical rhythm, the bass matching the pounding of my headache. My shaky view continued.
When I had reached the floor of the first level, I felt like people were staring at me. I wanted to question them as to why. I needed not to feel so odd.
I am the Beast that everyone fears. Nobody ever loves the Beast. It is the Beauty that they all want and love.
I walked into the kitchen feeling sick. I could just feel it all whirling in my stomach and throat. I was leaning against the island, trying to balance myself. I never felt so horrible in my entire life, and I thought my surgery was bad.
"Angel?" asked Roxana Mohammed.
"I don't want so sound bitchy or anything but…" she trailed off with leering, bloodshot eyes, "But, how do you get everything?"
"Excuse me?" I was confused by the whole randomness of this conversation.
"Like everyone knows you're one of the 'better off' families in the school. Why do you get what you want?"
"Believe me, I don't get everything."
"You always have the next trend clothing. Look at you, right now you're wearing who?"
I looked at my clothing. Did it really stand out that much? I was just wearing what I wanted; what I liked. I never really looked at the price tag of anything. Was I really that known for having business-operating parents?
"Um… I'm wearing a Heatherette top and a L.A.M.B. skirt. Why?"
"Wow. Only names you hear of in the media. No normal high school student would be wearing such couture names, Angel."
"What does it matter? Just because my parents worked their asses off to get their accounting firm started, means I have to get shit for being 'better off'? Roxana, I thought you were less materialistic than that."
"I am, Angel. Don't ever worry about me being materialistic. I was just wondering. Or are you going to throw a fit you Paris Hilton wannabe!"
I had no idea on how to react to her. I think my jaw went through the floor. No one has ever done something like this to me before. Awe isn't even the word I'd choose to describe what I was feeling.
I'm a Paris Hilton wannabe? Do I really come off as that?
I turned and walked away. I had no other choice. She was calling me back to question or degrade me more, I wasn't sure. I already had enough drama in my life, and none of which was the cliché high school stuff either.
There's a rumbling coming down the stairs. No one really seems to notice, or maybe they're not caring. I actually don't care either at the moment. There's too much attacking me at once. My newly-released sex drive, the jealousy and cattiness of others, and the alcohol in my body are exactly not the best combination to be working under.
"Angel," came the voice at the bottom of the staircase. It was slurred. It was cracking. It was an Emo mass lying on the floor. It was Jackal, acting like an idiot. He was looking like a scarecrow that had fallen off its post.
"Angel," he said in a drunken tones, "Why'd you leave me? Everything was good between us. Why did you leave?"
I kicked him in the leg. I was sick of him. He was acting like a child. I really wanted to kick him in the face. But, I kept most of my cool for the time being.
You're a horny prick. I want you to go die in a fire. I left you because you're so fucking selfish that I don't want to ever let you near me ever again. I don't even want you to touch me again.
I walked out of the house, past the still-partying kids. I was so tired. I just wanted to sleep. I just wanted to rid myself of this night.
I took out my cell phone and called information. I had then called a taxi to pick me up. So, then I just waited on the sidewalk. I sat there wondering what the Hell was wrong with me.
I am the Beast. I am the Beast that craves the Beauty. I am the Beast that hates humanity for the torment it's put through. I am the Beast that will never feel the normalcy of others.
The taxi pulled up to me. I told the driver my address. I was so tired, I was afraid I was going to pass out in the taxi. My head finally relaxing as the car pulled away from the party. The scent of curry and car freshener was good for my sense.
"Crazy party?" asked the driver with his Indian accent.
"Yeah. Def one of the craziest so far."
I had no idea of what else to say. I wasn't in the mood for any discussion. I was actually pretty much wordless. There was way too much that had happened to me on this night.
The driver pulled up to my front door. I paid him the fee and went inside my house. I walked up the stairs to my room.
I headed into my private bathroom and ran the water. I felt so disgusting that I just wanted to boil away the grossness I felt. I lit the incense and stripped. I looked at my body in the mirror.
I am both the Beauty and the Beast. I am the one everyone wants. I am the one everyone fears. The Beauty does love the Beast in the end, and vice versa.
I slid into the water and washed away everything I could. I scrubbed Jackal's perverted hand tricks that he so cleverly used on me. I scrubbed away Roxana's cattiness that she threw upon me. I scrubbed away the alcohol scent the permeated my pores. I wanted to be cleansed of that night.
After rinsing my problems away, I dressed and went to bed. I sunk into my queen size bed with the sea foam green, satin sheets. I let the night surround me as the sunrise clawed its way into my dreams.
The Beast never sleeps at night. The Beauty never sleeps during the day. But, at twilight they have each other's company. Like twins, like a Gemini, both halves are there for each other.