Vox: a novel - Part 6

Part 6

"G.o.d of mercy, I am so jealous!"

"Don't be," she said. "I think my offhand talk of yeast unnerved him, and his subservient streak unnerved me. Anyway, the point is, that story is connected to this very call between you and me, because when I was in the shower yesterday, and close to coming-"

"Thinking about the three painters."

"No, after the three painters, when I was very close to coming, I was thinking of that time with Lawrence, as I occasionally do, I imagine him handing me my bottles of shampoo with a serious expression, or some fragment of it, anyway yesterday I thought of the Bionic Mike Transmitter that he'd described, and I started to make these very theatrical moans, like *oh yeah, oh yeah baby, ooh yeah, pump it deep, pump it deep, oooh yeah' and I imagined that someone had left a Bionic Mike Transmitter in my bathroom and that random men on the expressway were driving by with their radios scanning the stations and suddenly they would pick me up, they'd hear me moaning exaggeratedly in the shower. I started to feel myself beginning to come, and I filled my mouth with water, and I thought of the men on the expressway hearing my mouth fill with water, and as I started to come I pushed the water from my mouth so that it poured from my chin over me, which is what I usually do, and I said, and this was not theatrical, this was heartfelt, I said, *Oh, shoot it, shoot it, you c.o.c.ksuckers!' I guess that in my ecstasy I was a trifle confused."

"Perfectly understandable. So then you called tonight ..."

"I called tonight I think out of the same impulse, the idea that five or six men would hear me come, as if my voice was this thing, this disembodied body, out there, and as they moaned they would be overlaying their moans onto it, and, in a way, coming onto it, and the idea appealed to me, but then, when I actually made the call, the reality of it was that the men were so irritating, either pa.s.sive, wanting me to entertain them, or full of what-are-your-measurements questions, and so I was silent for a while, and then I heard your voice and liked it."

"Thank you. Yours is nice, too, you know. Very smooth."

"Thanks. I just had it waxed yesterday. Shall we, do you think, should we perhaps come soon?"

"Yes. You're absolutely right. Are you naked?"

"Wait a sec. Yes, I am now officially naked, except for the bra."

"Are your legs apart?"

"My toes are holding on to the edge of the coffee table."

"Is your right hand touching your c.l.i.toris?"

"How impertinent! But yes, the answer is yes. My c.l.i.toris is in fact squeezed between my two index fingers, left and right, which are on either side of it."

"All right. You do whatever you want with those index fingers, and I'll tell you about a kind of sensing device that I own. What it does, it doesn't eavesdrop, it doesn't pick up sounds, it simply senses the presence nearby of any intelligent strumming woman. It looks like an antique pocket watch, it's gold, with a cover, but when you open it, instead of the dial, there is this mysterious fluid, this very special fluid in there that glows in several colors when the right conditions are met, for reasons that are not clear, except that of course a woman masturbating is so important an event in the physical universe that elemental relations in matter are affected as it occurs, and there are these sort of currents in the fluid that slowly move in a certain direction, like lines of force, which give you some sense of where the masturbation signals are coming from, although it takes years of practice, and of course a great deal of native skill as well, to learn how to read the fluid correctly. It's called the Bionic Mmmm-Detector, as you might suspect. Well, I'm driving down the expressway of an eastern city one evening around ten o'clock, in town on business, in my rented midsize car, my Ford Topaz, with the radio going, a cla.s.sics oldie station, playing *Ain't n.o.body,' and I'm just driving along, and as usual I have my Mmmm-Detector open on the seat beside me, but the fluid is dark, and then I start curving through this residential area, very close to the buildings on either side, and I glance down at the seat beside me, and my G.o.d, I'm getting a very strong signal, I'm getting wave patterns I've never seen before, from very near and to my right, and craning my neck I catch sight of a lighted window, and I know that behind it you are in process, you are beginning. My years of practice in reading the flux patterns in the watch tells me this is something very special, something I cannot pa.s.s by, and so I palm the steering wheel around suddenly and veer onto the off ramp and scoot back through the narrow streets, swearing at all the oneway signs, and when I come to the door where the Mmmm-forces are flowing from, I park in a place that is sure to get me a ticket, and I leave my flashers on, and I go into the foyer. There's a row of b.u.t.tons with names beside them: I hold the detector to each one until one, the third one down, makes the Mmmm-Detector glow with strange colors, and I hesitate, I know that I am interrupting you, and I don't want to do that, that's the last thing I want to do, but it seems so clear to me, reading the force waves, that there is a strong possibility that you would want me to interrupt you, if you knew me, and the conviction that this is true grows in me, and my finger trembles at your b.u.t.ton, and there is a huge interior war between reticence and attraction, between the fear that I will inspire fear and the certainty that I should not inspire fear and that we would like each other if I could simply push that b.u.t.ton, and I look down at the Mmmm-Detector and I see that you are going to come in less than four minutes if you keep on at that rate, you're really moving, the colors are increasingly intense, and I'm trembling, I'm shivering, but I'm compelled, and I push the b.u.t.ton, bzzzzt. You're on your bed, and you're wearing a blue long-sleeved pullover sort of shirt, and black pants and black sneakers, but your black pants are around your ankles, and you've got that tattered, disintegrating issue of Forum in your left hand, and you're reading about a job interview in which the woman interviewer is sucking the interviewee's c.o.c.k, and you're right in the middle of things, when bzzzzt, the doorbell. Who could that be?"

"So I do up my pants and I go to the speaker and I say, *h.e.l.lo?' "

"And I say, *Hi, this is Jim. I know it's late, but I wonder if I could use your phone. My car's engine has seized up, and all the oil lights on the dash are glowing, and I don't dare drive it any further, and the pay phone down the street isn't working.' "

"I say, *Why did you buzz my apartment?' "

"And I say, *The others don't answer. You're right to be hesitant, but this isn't a normal situation, this is urgent, I've got to get back to my hotel, I've got a whole day of appointments tomorrow, I just have to get seven and a half hours of sleep or I won't function, and I need to use your phone, and I a.s.sure you that I'm reasonably sane and peaceable, and I would not normally do this, invade your privacy, but I'm telling you nothing could be more important than this. Please.' And you hear the conviction in my voice, and you buzz me in."

"Well, no, first I hold the talk b.u.t.ton in and to my empty apartment I call out, *Jeff? Jeff? Enough with the weights! Do you and Mojo Cartilage-Popper mind if someone comes up to use the phone for a second?' Then I buzz you in downstairs, knowing that I can look at you through the peephole in my door, and call Bobby the super if you look strange."

"Exactly. I run up to the second floor, and I find your door, and before I stand right in front of it, I check the Mmmm-Sensor and find that your arousal has suffered some decline, you are now ten or more minutes away from an o.r.g.a.s.m, though the glow faintly persists. I knock, and I begin pacing back and forth in front of the door, distractedly, like a guy impatient to make a phone call. You look through the peephole and you see this guy, middle height, black hair, not bad-looking, somewhat frazzled, pacing back and forth in front of your door, checking a pocket watch. You let me in. And I introduce myself, I apologize for bothering you, I smile at you, and immediately I can sense the alertness and intelligence in your face, and I see that we understand each other, and I know my Mmmm-Sensor hasn't misled me. Ah, but I've lied my way into your apartment, which is a problem."

"It is, because if I knew!"

"Curtains. So you bring me the phone, and I sit on the edge of a dining-room chair, and I call my answering machine, and I start telling it about the oil lights on my dashboard, I really have to have someone take care of it, I need the number of a cab company, etcetera, and then all of a sudden I stop, in midsentence, and I click off the phone and I say, *Nah, I can't.' "

" *You can't what?' "

" *I can't do it. I can't pretend.' And I confess to you that I've lied, that my car is fine, that I was driving on the expressway, and I got this highly unusual, if not unique, reading on my Mmmm-Sensor, or Mmmm-Detector, whatever I'm calling it, and I pull it out of my pocket and open the finely scratched gold top and show it to you, and I explain, hesitantly, that it, um, picks up the flux currents from intelligent, um, masturbating women, and I show you how it glows, and I point out the wavy flow lines as they move in your direction, and I say, *They're somewhat fainter now, but they're definitely still there, and they really look great. Now, let's see what happens if I do this.' And I stand next to you, so you can see the Mmmm-Detector as I hold it a foot or so from your face, and then I lower it and slowly pa.s.s it a few inches in front of each breast, and the pattern makes these complicated shifts. And I say, *But as you may be able to see, I'm getting other readings, interference fringes,' and I hold the thing up and I walk slowly to the walls of your hall, where there is a faint rural pattern showing through the paint, and I say, *For instance, the walls, very curious,' and I shake my head in perplexity, and then I follow the flow lines to a drawer in the kitchen, filled with silverware-very odd-and I follow it into the bathroom, and you follow me in, and I lean into the shower and move the Mmmm-Detector past the fixtures, the drain, the shampoo bottles-beautiful color changes and convergences of flow waves-and I shake my head and I say, *Gosh, I've never seen anything as rich as this,' and I follow its lead into the bedroom, and you follow me, and I say, *Wow, very high flux levels in here,' and I pa.s.s it over your chenille bedspread and I say, *Your feet must have been here and here,' pointing to two places quite far apart on the bed, and I know that everything I'm doing is forward, is really inexcusable, but in a way you're curious, and I'm just relaying facts, and I sense your willingness to have this happen, and I push the Mmmm-Detector into the pillow and then reach under it and find your disintegrating copy of Forum, and I sit down on the bed and page through it slowly, holding the device to each page, until I reach a certain page, and I peer very closely at the sensor, and then I hold it close to the b.u.t.ton on your pants, and I inspect it again, and I look up smiling, and I hold the magazine out to you, pointing at something on the page, and I say, *You were reading this sentence, this phrase right here in this sentence, when I buzzed your apartment.' "

"And," she said, "I take the Forum and read what you're pointing at, and you're pretty close, it's not exactly the right phrase, but you've found the right paragraph, anyway. And I don't know quite what to do. I probably should be calling the cops, because you seem to know all this stuff about me, but on the other hand, there you are, and I am still feeling all puffy down below, and you have a certain amount of charm, and an intriguing pocket watch, and so I offer you a, a what? A dry Vermouth on the rocks. And you accept."

"I do, you're right," he said, "and now I'm sitting on an armchair when you come toward me with the drinks, a low sort of armchair, and I have my legs sprawled open in a fairly innocent way, and I just dust off the area of the armchair that's between my legs, indicating that if you want to, you could sit there with no problem and lean back against me, and you do turn and sit there, but you don't lean back, you're leaning forward, and so I have this warm back, covered in loose blue shirt material, in front of me, this miracle of a back, and I take a sip of the drink, and put it down on the table, on a napkin, so it won't leave a ring, and I reach up and click off the table lamp so it's a bit darker, and I close my eyes and find your shoulders with my hands and you ask where I found the Mmmm-Detector and I describe the table of junk I found it on in a flea market in Anaheim, a hundred and forty bucks, without any manual, and how I taught myself over several years what it was for and how to read it, and as I'm telling you this I'm moving my thumbs in two little arcs back and forth above your shoulder blades, which is as much of a back rub as I can handle, because the notion of something called a back rub tires my mind out instantly, and I can't do anything that has to do with that, even though your back and my hands are interested in each other. What interests me is your bra, quite honestly, and so I relax my left hand and let it slide down the middle of your back, just let the fingers slide very lightly down over the material of your shirt, until I come to the place where your bra is fastened, and with my eyes closed, and with your a.s.s warm between my legs, but still innocently there, I feel the three possible places for the hooks on the little fastener to hook, and that you've used the third setting, because of shrinkage probably, and I take my fingers and I follow the upward curving edge of the bra as it rises toward your shoulders, and I ride this curve up a little way over your shoulders and then back down your back and in to the middle again. It's like driving over the Bay Bridge. Then I follow the bottom edge horizontally around, under your arms, until I just reach the seam where a cup begins, and you feel all this somewhat dimly, because it's through your shirt and through the bra, but you are more aware now of the shape of the bra that you're wearing, and then I go back to the fastener and I make that time-honored pinching move and release the hooks through your shirt, and each side pulls away, and now I feel that I have this perfect central stretch with no interruption, and I press my left palm between your shoulder blades and slide slowly down, moving your shirt, feeling wrinkles in it form and pa.s.s, and I can feel some slight b.u.mps of your backbone-what a beautiful back, so warm. I want very much to feel your skin. So I put both hands on your hips and hook my two thumbs and index fingers under the bottom edge of your shirt, or no, I grab hold of it on either side and pull it, because it was tucked into your pants, and I pull it out, and then I hook my hands underneath, and I can feel your skin move slightly as my fingers first touch it, just above your hips, and I run my fingers back along the inside of your waistband, and I can feel the warmth of your a.s.s, and then I flatten my hands against your back and slide them up under your shirt, ah, all the way up so the fingers come out and go a little way along the nape of your neck into your hair before subsiding. It's a loose shirt, don't worry. Am I going too slow for you?"

"No no, keep going, that's fine."

"Oh, I love moving my hands over you under your loose shirt, I love that. I'd slide my hands around over your stomach, so that my fingertips met, and feel it pull in, and slide up slowly along your ribs, and when I got to where the curves of your b.r.e.a.s.t.s started, I would trace them around, out to the sides, back to the middle, and I would pa.s.s just my fingertips up between your b.r.e.a.s.t.s, up along your breastbone, pushing under the loose bra, and then one finger even higher, along your voice box, to where your chin starts, and you'd lean your head back and I would be able to smell your hair, and then I'd pull back down, deliberately avoiding your b.r.e.a.s.t.s."

"And I would stand up," she said, "and turn around so I'm facing you, with my shins touching the armchair, and I'd undo the b.u.t.ton of my pants."

"And I would reach out," he said, "and take hold of your zipper and push it slowly down, so that I'm pushing against your mound with it, not at your c.l.i.toris, but above it, and I'd slide my fingers under your waistband and guide your pants off over your hips and a.s.s, and when they fell to your knees I'd put my foot on the inside of the crotch so you could step out of them easily, and I'd smell how wet you are, and I'd slide my hands up your legs and slip my fingers under the waistband of your underpants, and pull them down a little, and then I'd roll them under my palms, so the fabric just rolled up, and they fell and you stepped easily out of them, too. And then ..."

"And then," she said, "you'd undo your belt and the top b.u.t.ton of your pants, and the clink of your belt buckle would be like the little bell signaling the start of something serious, and I would slowly move the zipper over the high lump of your erection, and you'd lift your hips and I'd pull your pants off, but not your underpants, and then I'd slide one knee on the cushion of the armchair, between your legs, against your b.a.l.l.s, and the other outside your legs, and I'd let my weight settle on your thigh, so we're close but facing each other."

"And first," he said, "my leg would feel the roughness of your pubic hair, I'd feel it scratching against itself, and then I'd feel you open and I'd feel this wet oval of heat on the muscle of my thigh, and I'd look down at your folded legs straddling my leg, and run my hands up them, and scoop up your shirt again, and this time I'd lift it with me as my hands moved up, and I'd watch them, I watch your shirt rising, the seam of your shirt is over my wrists, and then I reach your b.r.e.a.s.t.s and I lift your shirt and your loose bra up just a little more, and, ah, there they are your nipples, finally, and you see my hands reveal them, and I see your b.r.e.a.s.t.s moving slightly as you breathe, and I sit up and bend toward them, and then on second thought straighten and lick my lips and kiss you, and your tongue is very warm and very friendly."


"And I bend back down toward one of your b.r.e.a.s.t.s, and I open my mouth, which now finally remembers how to kiss from just kissing you, and I just breathe on your nipple, and the shirt starts to fall down over it, and I nudge it aside with my tongue and then hold it out of the way with my hand, and now I have your breast entirely surrounded with both my palms, and you feel your breast held this way, completely under my care, and I just touch the tip of my tongue once to the almost flat top of your nipple, which is hard, and then I open my mouth quite wide, and draw my tongue way back, and you arch your back slightly, and so my lips make contact with your breast, surrounding your nipple but not touching it, and I suck on it without touching it also, so that you feel the pulling as it's being drawn into my mouth, and even becoming soft, or losing its definition, from being drawn in that way, and wanting to be directly touched, and then you feel the tip of my tongue just touch the base of your nipple and then paint a warm vertical stripe up over it, and then back down, and then my whole tongue, much wider and fatter, pushes and moves against your nipple, and then I hold my mouth and tongue still and a little looser and with my hands I move your whole breast in circles and back and forth under them, so that you feel its whole size in my hands, ho, I'm sucking on your b.r.e.a.s.t.s ..."

"And I'd hold on to your head as you sucked my b.r.e.a.s.t.s, and feel your tongue doing all those nice things to me through your cheeks. I am so wet."

"Oh, and I'd tighten my thigh muscle where your p.u.s.s.y was pressing down on it and feel your wetness slide against me, and I'd look up at you and kiss you again, and slide my hands down to your hips and push down, so that there was more pressure still against your notch, and I'd feel your hips move slightly, adjusting themselves so that it felt best ..."

"And while we were kissing I'd reach down and catch my fingers under one leg hole of your underpants and pull it up and over your c.o.c.k and b.a.l.l.s and then I'd hold your b.a.l.l.s in my hand for a second and then I'd bring my hand up and squeeze the head of your c.o.c.k in my fist and kind of pull and push on it while I was squeezing it tightly."

"And you'd feel my lips making an oh shape while we were kissing, with the pleasure of your hand doing that, and, ho, I'd need to suck your c.l.i.t soon, because I'd feel the come in me starting to want to spurt out, and so we'd shift positions so that you were sitting on the armchair and I was kneeling on the floor, and you'd scoot your hips forward so that your a.s.s was just at the edge of the pillow, and when you glanced down you could see your own b.r.e.a.s.t.s, and your pubic hair, and your knees held together, with my hands on them, and you'd see the glossy wet place on my thigh, and then I'd encircle your legs with one arm, holding them together, and bend toward your bush and breathe on it, the little of it I can see, and I run my fingers just down the long place where the insides of your thighs touch, all the way to your knees, and then I'd let go of your legs, and they'd fall slightly apart, and as my hands started to move up inside them, with my fingers splayed wide, they'd move farther and farther apart, and then I'd lift your knees and hook them over the arms of the armchair, so that you were wide open for me, and in the darkness your bush would still be indistinct, and I'd look up at you, and I'd move on my knees so I'm closer, so I could slide my c.o.c.k in you if I wanted, and I touch your shoulders with my hands, and pa.s.s my fingertips all the way down over your b.r.e.a.s.t.s and over your stomach and just lightly over your bush, just to feel the hair, and then I say, *I'm going to lick you now,' and I lick both your nipples once very briefly goodbye, and I breathe my way down, and I pa.s.s over your bush this time with my mouth, and I see where the tan stops, and where the hair begins, and I keep going, and your legs are spread wide, and so I kiss inside one knee, and then across to the other, and up, back and forth, and at the end of each kiss I give a little upward lick with my tongue, up lick, lick, lick, back and forth, moving closer and closer to where your thighs meet. And then the last time I turn my head, there's nothing I can do, my mouth is just buried in your pubic hair, and I breathe through it, I fill it with warmth, and I open my mouth more, and I bring my tongue out, and I start low, and the underside of my tongue is touching my lower teeth, and I lick slowly upwards, until I reach the place where the skin is more folded, and I find that beautiful c.l.i.toris, and I move over it with my tongue, and then when I've found it I close my mouth and sort of burrow my way into you so that all your pubic hair is away from my mouth, and my mouth is entirely around your c.l.i.t, and I hold my hands very high on the insides of your thighs, feeling those stretched tendons, so you feel how wide apart you are, and I suck the skin around your c.l.i.toris into my mouth, like I did with your nipple, so that you feel it drawn into my mouth, and when you feel it drawn in I take my tongue, very high, right at the base of your c.l.i.toris, where I can feel that little ridge beginning, and I start to go back and forth over it, back and forth slowly over it, and you feel the tip of my tongue traveling down toward the part where it's hotter, and then I reach the very full part of your c.l.i.toris, and you pull your hips in slightly and readjust to that feeling, and I cup my hands under your a.s.s and lift you into my mouth and just suck on you, and I shake my whole head back and forth very fast, as if I'm saying, no, no, no, but I'm saying yes to your c.l.i.t with my tongue."

"Oh, I'm going to come soon. Put your c.o.c.k in me, I want to think about your c.o.c.k in me."

"Are your legs spread apart?"


"Oh, and you're stroking that c.l.i.t?"


"Okay, so I'd take one last long up-lick on your p.u.s.s.y and then I'd straighten up, and I'd still be cupping your a.s.s in my hands, and you'd be completely visible by now, wide open, sopping wet, and I'd take my c.o.c.k in one hand and kind of vibrate it over your c.l.i.t, and you'd slide your hands down and hold your lips apart with your fingers, and then I'd push my c.o.c.k down and I'd feel how hot you were and I'd have to slide myself slowly all the way in, and then I'd pull almost all the way out again and slide in, into that nice nasturtium, and each time I pulled out I'd be able to see your hand circling your c.l.i.t, and I'd slide in until my pubic bone thumped against you, and I'd watch your b.r.e.a.s.t.s move each time I reached this limit, and we would be f.u.c.king, sliding in and out ..."


"And your finger would be flying over your c.l.i.t, your hand would be lifted and your finger would be flying back and forth, and I'd have your a.s.scheeks cupped in both my hands, so you could feel a pulling on your a.s.shole, and I would be sliding with long strokes out, and in, and out, and in, and I'd see your t.i.ts moving each time ..."

"Oh! Oh!"

"Oh, I'm starting to come for you, my c.o.c.k is pumping inside you ..."

"Oh! Nnnnnnnn! Nnn! Nnn! Nnn! Nnn! Nnn! Nnn!"

"It's spurting out! I can't help it! Ah! Ah! Oooooo."

There was a pause.

"Oh man," she said. "Wow. You there?"

"I think so." He swallowed. "Let me catch my breath."

"That was-that was-man," she said. "I saw the great seal of the Commonwealth of Ma.s.sachusetts when I came."

"I heard you come and I came," he said.

"Whoo! How long have we been talking?"

"Hours and hours."

"Hours and hours and hours," she said. "My mouth is chapped. Too much making out."

"Is your voice sore?"

"It really is. Whoo! Gee, I'm going to have to call in sick again. I'll sleep all day, mm, sounds delightful. The hiss on the phone is very loud now, isn't it? That companionable hiss. It's always louder at the end of conversations."

"Oh, is it the end already?" he said. "Couldn't we just fade out somehow, talking and talking? I can't think of a better way to invest my life savings. Not that I'm much of a saver."

"You're quite a telephoner, though."

"You are too! I mean it! I think really this is one of the nicest conversations I've ever had."

"I liked it too," she said. "I don't know, though-do you think we talked enough about s.e.x?"

"Not nearly enough. I-"

"Yes?" she said.

"Do you think our ... wires will cross again?"

"I don't know. I don't know. What do you think?"

"I could give you my number," he said. "I mean if you still want it. I'll avoid a possibly awkward moment by not asking for yours. Or we could meet out here again, if you'd rather do that."

"Out here under the stars? I can't afford it. Where's a pencil? Ah, a nice blunt pencil. Tell me your number."

He told her. She read it back to him.

"Call me soon," he said. "In fact, call me in a few hours, after you've topped yourself off in the shower."

"You know me too well."

"I like you a lot."

"I wonder what you look like," she said.

"Surprisingly normal. Maybe someday you'll know."

"It's a possibility."

"We'd probably be a little nervous at first, if we met. But then ..."

"Then we'd start masturbating like ferrets," she said, "and that would quickly break the ice."

"That's right. I hope you will call. You remember I have this pair of cotton pointelle tights. Unopened."

"Size small?"

"Size small. In faun. Put Leona to work, get those legs waxed, I'm on my way. No. But call me soon. Soon soon soon. I hope you will."

"All right," she said. "Let me think about things. Let me absorb the strangeness."

"What's strange?"

"Nothing," she said. "I guess nothing. I think I should probably sign off now, though. I have to put a load of towels in the laundry."

"Certainly. Okay. Thank you for calling this number."

"Thank you. Bye Jim."

"Bye Abby. Bye."

They hung up.