“I love you too.” And I do. I love this man, who has not one stressed out bone in his body. He concerns himself with two things. Surfing, and keeping me happy. I love his outlook on life, a Bob Marley style philosophy. We f**k, we surf, and we love. There isn’t too much else to our life. To this half of my life.
“Waves are supposed to be strong this afternoon. Wanna ride some today?”
“I think I’ll hit the bookstore. Log in a few hours. You go out this morning?”
“Yeah. Got up about five. Maverick’s Invitational is in three weeks so I’ll hit it hard ‘til then.”
Paul doesn’t need to practice. He is god on a stick. His arms and legs work in perfect synchronization, his body gliding and bending at the perfect moment to stay balanced. Watching him surf makes my heart pound and my body clench. It is pure sex, the push and pull of muscles in a graceful movement that displays his athleticism. He’s consistently ranked in the top twenty surfers in the world, a ranking that means little when it comes to his finances. Every competition is a negative investment, unless he wins. If he wins, sponsors are happy and prize money covers a few months of rent. If he loses, he is out his travel expenses and we eat Ramen noodles until the next big event.
I close my eyes, twisting until my head is on his stomach, his hand automatically reaching for and running through my hair, pulling bits of blond and curling them around his finger. I close my eyes, the movement soothing and familiar. Outside, some music starts up, the strands of reggae floating through the air and over our space. To Ziggy Marley’s voice and against Paul’s sun-kissed abs, I close my eyes and fall asleep.
I hate society’s notion that there is something wrong with sex. Something wrong with a woman who loves sex. I’ve loved sex for as long as I can remember. I lost my virginity at fourteen, when Gus Blankenship showed me his penis behind the gym, and I got so hot and bothered that I let him put it in me. Right there, with hard gravel digging into my back, his excited acne-covered face above. It was the best forty-two seconds of my life thus far.
That was back in the day. When fourteen-year olds were still pure, and not the makeup covered, push-up bra tramps that they are today. Sixth grade sleepovers are now orgies where the girls fight over who’s gonna get to suck the barely-handsome dad off first.
It’s all wrong, the evolution of our innocent youth into cock-gobbling sluts. Which seems hypocritical coming from me, but its not. I f**k because I love it, because I want to, it brings me pleasure. They f**k because they think that they have to – for the guy, for the queen-bee girl, for the proverbial ‘fuck you’ to society that they think it creates.
They have it so backwards, so twistedly screwed. Sex should be about mutual enjoyment, connection, the borrowing from another’s fire at a moment when you want it most.
I pity them, with their glossy red lips and pierced belly buttons. Because, when it all comes to pass? When they ‘grow up’ and getting f**ked during halftime is no longer cool but suddenly slutty? They will feel dirty. Used. Ruined. Because they did it for the wrong reasons.
My phone rings, shrill and demanding. I sigh, the ringtone one reserved for only one individual.
“Would you like me to get that?” The soft voice of the masseuse matches the dim room, soothing sounds, and eucalyptus scent.
“Do you mind bringing it to me? I’ll put it on silent.” I push up, taking the cell and silencing the call, flipping the button on the side to mute any future interruptions. “Sorry about that.” I lay back down, holding out the phone, the woman taking it from me with a gracious smile.
My Mother. I will need to call her back, as soon as Kindi finishes melting every muscle off of my body. Paul needs this, to let this woman work her magic on his sore back and tight legs. But that will never happen. Kindi is a Stewart perk, her oiled hands rubbing me down in the second floor of Stewart’s skyscraper. That’d be combining my worlds, and as stupid as I am to have the two worlds, even I realize the danger in mixing their components.
I take a deep breath and exhale, intentionally relaxing my shoulders, her fingers digging and pushing, breaking up a bundle of nerves, the pain excruciatingly pleasurable. I push all thoughts of Paul out of my head and focus on her hands.
I grew up a charmed child of La Jolla. Nannies wiped my dirty ass, Christmas was spent in Aspen, and school uniforms shared closet space with miniature lines of Dior and Versace. I lived a privileged line between surfer chick and spoiled brat, sandy cheeks and wet bikinis chafing the leather seats of my ice blue BMW convertible. I smoked weed with friends in million dollar mansions with ocean views while our parents cruised the Black Sea. I f**ked preppy boys who wore Lacoste and Rolexes and played lacrosse. I was in a bubble of ridiculousness, and grew up thinking that life never said no, credit cards were never declined, and happiness was a given.
Then my father, a hedge fund manager with a minor addiction to cocaine, drove off the manicured edge of a Malibu cliff, to the polished astonishment of a restaurant full of Orange County’s upper society. The fact that his mistress, a surgically enhanced blonde three years older than me, was in the front seat, was hid from no one, and embraced by many of my mom’s arch enemies. They both died, drowned or killed by the cliffs. I didn’t ask for particulars and none were offered up.
Perfection, in that moment, became flawed and fragile. I never took anything for granted again.
Our money lasted another ten months, ‘til the fat mortgage, civil lawsuits and attorneys took it all. I spent my senior year in the public high school, my BMW repossessed, my school uniforms left in the closet of a home that the bank quickly seized. I was unceremoniously dumped into normality, courtesy of a mother fighting her own depression. If I had still had a cell phone at that moment in time, I can assure you that my lifelong ‘friends’ would not have answered my call.
Looking back, I see the turning point that occurred at that moment in time. I miss my father, despite his shortcomings and mistakes. I loved him, I have pieces of him throughout my personality. But the person that I was becoming? The type of individual that easy wealth and never-told-no parenting breeds? I was a bitch. A self-assured, my-way-or-the-highway, bitch. I didn’t appreciate what I had and demanded more at every turn. I am grateful that I got kicked in the ass. That I had a taste of reality before I traveled too far and that persona became permanent.
That happened to my mother. She was raised in those twenty-thousand square foot mansions, she was given everything she ever wanted, right up until the moment that it all disappeared. She drowned herself in top-shelf martinis we couldn’t afford, refusing to cook, clean, or pay bills – her breeding too great for such blue-collar work. I became the adult, she became the child, and we sank further and further in life until I moved out and she found a man. Now she is the wife and full-time dependent of Maurice Fulton, an old man who she can’t possibly love, one who keeps her groomed and outfitted in his big house and keeps her glass filled. I speak to her occasionally, when I get the sadistic urge to see what an society-bred alcoholic sounds like.