775 - That bad feeling is always right
I have no commitments. I can swim in ecstasy with my loves all day and not have to catch up on anything tomorrow, or disappoint anyone important, or cause a delay that makes the success of some plan of mine less likely. I am betraying no commitments because I have none.
I thought I had learned it on Haiu Menshir. I had got only the start there. Something so deeply ingrained, we learn in increments, learn down through the layers of ourselves, one by one.
This is another way to teach myself deeper, grave it on my soul, I thought, as I turned on my side and ran my eyes down Niku’s perfect body, brown and strong and scarred proudly with the marks of war and motherhood, flushed with joy, then trailed a finger down her hip, making her writhe in post-orgasm sensitivity, and the glow spreading to all of us that it had been Skorsas who’d put her there. Sex has power to go very deep. They were bonded as never before.
So all through it, all day, I spoke those words to myself, I have no commitments, to drive it fully home. I have no commitments my loves etched on my skin, on my manhood, all through my core, onto my heart, into my soul. “I have no commitments!” is not what everyone yells in the throes and then at the absolute peak of pleasure, but I did, then lay limp as a puddle as they rolled in laughter, Kall falling right off the bed.
I have no commitments, but to love those I love. And nibble them.
We did take breaks, to eat and drink, to walk to other parts of the house such as the water-room… they’d had it built something like the Lesser Baths, with a churning hot tub big enough for ten or so and a cool pool much bigger than that, but with more granite and cedar than marble. And a waterfall down one wall… we stayed there for a while, tongue-washing each other, bathing in the worship of fluids, floating in love that now had no broken link.
That night, Skorsas had another long cry, mostly in Niku’s arms, for knowing what Arkan women have had excised. “I will never not know that again,” he sobbed.
“But in time there will be no more purification,” I said. “And Arko will heal from it.” Only that cheered him.
I slept as well that night as anyone can on whom the world does not depend. The next morning, I saw my future stretched out before me, so beautiful it left me breathless. I’ll be able to do that with them whenever we all want, for the rest of my life.
Excerpt from the personal journal of Intharas Terren
Eight-day ending Anae 32, 52nd-to-last Y.P.A.
We are so fikked.
I’m so fikken shaking I can barely write. Maybe I’ll eat this after writing it. Or burn before eating. Or shen, I can barely think I’m trying to write so I can think because writing orders the thoughts.
It was just another typical day in the Fortress of the Truth Troops of Arko, fluffy’s boil, more delays to such and such Shefenkas-move, blah blah blah when Shemeias comes in and sits down at his desk without doing more than a grunt towards whoever’s straight in his path. Arm-waving wool-hairs, loudest people in the world, and it’s like his tongue’s been spiked to the bottom of his mouth. He’s hunched, too, and keeps looking around and over his shoulder as if he’s afraid someone’s going to stab him in the back.
I go over to him to express my concern. “What the fik is with you?” I gently cajole.
“Nothing,” he grunts, not even looking up.
“Don’t shen in my mouth, you scurvy wool-hair,” I empathize compassionately. “You’re acting as if the ghosts of the Mahid are chomping at your heels, and you want to convince me it’s nothing?”
“Fik you, Intharas,” he entreats. “I said kyashin nothing and that’s what I meant.”
“You mean you’d rather not fikken say.”
“Hire this one, elite Sereniteer detective department!”
“Well, you could have shennen said that at the start! Privacy is every man’s right.” I’ll get it out of him later, in private, if I have to get him drunk, or herbed, or whored… whatever it takes. Because I’m getting a bad feeling, and thirty years of being an adult, at least when I’m sober, has taught me that that bad feeling is always right.
All my inky denizens slither into the newsroom sluggishly, as they always do before sucking in the morning’s first life-giving cup of kaf and drag of katzerik. Except Foranas, who’s usually here so bright and early, and so perky like a rooster without even a sniff of kaf, that everyone else wants to strangle him and make him into stock.
A whole bead later and no Foranas, nor any message he’s sick or hung over or lying with a whore or anything. And he has a story due at third after noon. “Bretzas,” I say to the newest cub. “Get down to the lazy whoreson’s house and drag him out of bed. All the way here by the heels if you have to, that’s an order.”
It takes a tenth and a twentieth to get to Foranas’s apartment and back, so should be a fifth and a tenth to get there and back… longer with a little out-of-bed-dragging in between and of course if it’s by the heels that’ll slow them down some. But Bretz is back in two tenths, by himself, breathless but white where he should be red, his eyes looking like all the air-shrivelling demons of Hayel are after him at once and his body shaking like a leaf. “H-h-he’s not going to b-b-be coming in,” he stammers.
“Why the fik not, what by the kaina marugh miniren happened?”
“H-h-h-he’s d-d-dead,” he whispers.