CHAPTER 15: GHOSTED


One thing was for certain, I couldn’t take her to my place. One look at the comfortable bachelor filth of the Cursèd Place and I’d be blue-balling it for sure. And with Lolla in town, the chances of finding a vacant hotel room were vanishingly small. We spilled out of the Hilton onto the rain-washed sidewalks of the South Loop and made our way to where the GTO was parked beneath the L tracks. The worst of the storm was past, and the night was settling in clear and cool. All the lights of the neighborhood had halos around them. Melody did too.

I reached into my pocket for my key ring and Quetzalez’s key caught my eye.

No sex, no drugs, no rock n roll.

Better to ask for forgiveness, I decided.

The GTO’s roar echoed up the canyon of the skyscrapers as we charged down Roosevelt Avenue toward Pilsen. Melody rolled down her window to let in the wild wind and crowed with delight. I risked a glance at her out of the corner of my eye. Her hair rippled in dark waves, and I caught a whiff of her perfume: dark and powerful. Not sweet. We crossed the river and hooked a left to head south on Damen Avenue.

“We’re on Damen!” Melody shouted gripping the dashboard as we took the corner on two wheels.

“Yeah.”

“Your name is Damen.”

“I was named after the street,” I said. “I was born on an L train and right after I came out it pulled into the station and the voice said ‘This is Damen’ so that’s what my Mom named me.”

Melody threw her head back and laughed and my heart leaped at the sound. I struggled to concentrate on the road. The intersections were numbered now instead of named. I crossed 18th and wondered if I’d gone too far. I could never remember the name of Quetzalez’s street, but the flashing blue light of a police camera told me where to turn. I slowed to a crawl, the GTO’s pre-catalytic engine chugging through the thick August air as I cruised for a parking spot and wondered if I had the wits to parallel park.

I found a spot down the block from Quetzalez’s place and eased the GTO in, managing to bumper-kiss the car in front, the car in back, and a discarded bicycle chained to the telephone pole on the passenger side. The latter shrieked and gouged a deep scar in the paint. Edward was going to hate that.

Melody didn’t wait for me to turn the engine off—she pounced across the seat and pressed her lips to mine. I fumbled with the keys, silencing the engine and the radio and then wrapped my arms around her waist and pulled her onto my lap. She pressed against me and devoured my mouth like she wanted to eat me alive. I had to pull away to breathe. My heart raced faster and harder than I’d ever felt it go. I wondered if I was having a heart attack.

 “Let’s go.” Melody levered open the driver’s side door and climbed out over me, leaving me to struggle with the keys and seatbelt. I made my clumsy escape and gestured up the street.

“This way.” My voice was loud in the quiet street. Quetzalez’s place was a two-story bungalow built sometime during the 1940s in a row of other, identical bungalows. The vinyl siding had once been white but was now flaked with blue paint and the front yard was verging on overgrown around a series of flaking plaster Madonnas and faded Halloween decorations. I tried the gate, but it was locked. The lock was new and I didn’t have the key. The chain-link fence was only about chest height, so I hauled myself over it and opened the gate for Melody.

“This isn’t your house, is it?”

“It’s a friend’s place.” I held up my key ring. “It’s okay, I have a key.”

I led her down the narrow sidewalk between Quetzalez’s house and his neighbor’s. The backyard consisted of a concrete slab where Quetzalez’s Toyota was parked beside the house’s single car garage where he kept the Town car. A short series of steps lead down to a garden-level door for a mother-in-law apartment below the main house. A motion sensor light burst on at full flood, sending a cascade of bright shards across my vision.

I unlocked the door and together we staggered into the darkened apartment. I flipped on a light in time to trip over a heavy 1970’s end table and crash to the floor. Melody laughed and I rolled on my back and pulled her down on top of me.

I couldn’t wait any longer. I tore at her dress, desperate to get it over her head. She wasn’t wearing a bra, just a wisp of lace around her hips for panties. Her breasts were heavy and hot in my hands. Her nipples grew hard at my touch. Her skin was golden, and I could see a flush of color spread from her cheeks to her neck and chest.

With equal urgency, Melody clawed at my t-shirt. I helped her pull it over my head and pitched it away while she undid my belt. She tugged on the waistband. I raised my hips and pushed them down. Melody climbed off me long enough to shed her panties leaving her fully, gloriously nude, haloed by the yellow glass of a knock-off Tiffany lamp. Kneeling beside me, she freed my cock and bent forward to take it in her mouth.

“Oh, God…” I saw stars. I was dead. Surely, I was dead. Please let this be heaven. I raised a hand to stroke her back but hesitated.

No hands!

Melody seemed to sense my hesitation and raised her head.

“I want you now,” she said, her voice thick.

I lay her down beside me on the carpet and kissed my way down her neck, her collarbone, the plain of her chest, lingering on her breasts then across the smooth hollow of her belly to the mound of her sex. I glanced up at her to see if she was watching. She was. She propped herself up on her elbows as I slowly sank below her horizon.

I heard her gasp when my lips made the first contact with her pussy. I flicked at her with my tongue, just a taste, then I plunged deeper inside her, feeling her body go taut, hearing her moan in a low, wild sound. Her fingers traced through my hair, gripping the back of my head.

I pulled away and propped myself up on my knees. Melody lay back on the carpet, legs splayed, her glistening sex fully exposed. With shaking hands, I reached over to the end table—the same one I’d tripped over—and searched the drawer for a condom. Quetzalez kept a stash of them there—forever hopeful. I fished one out but couldn’t tear it open. My hands were clumsy and slippery with sweat.

“Fuck! Shit!” The more I struggled the more frustrated I got and the more frustrated I got the more I struggled.

“Gimme.” Melody took the packet from me and tore it open with her teeth. She sat up and rolled it on me herself. Her touch sent shudders of electricity through my body—up my spine, down my legs—little sparks of it rattled around the inside of my skull. I let out a groan and shoved her back down to the floor and climbed on top of her.

Melody drew her legs up and wrapped them around my back, and suddenly I was inside her. I began to thrust into her with my hips—her own hips rushing to meet mine. The sharp points of her fingernails dug into my back and scratched down across my shoulder. She pressed her mouth to mine. Her tongue invaded my mouth, and her teeth dug into my lips around the deep, rich animal sounds she made in her throat.

“Cum for me,” she growled. “Do it now.”

And I did. Her words pushed me over the edge. I came so hard I blacked out; I didn’t pass out exactly, but I was suddenly plunged into darkness and silence. I could feel my body shuddering and the tremors of pleasure running through Melody’s magnificent form still pressed beneath me, but all I could hear was music—beautiful and complex—clear, ringing notes like no instrument I’d ever heard before.

Gradually, my vision cleared, and I found I was now on my back with Melody on top of me, riding hard, teeth bared and ferocious, eyes wild and dark. The dense cloud of her dark hair billowed with each thrust until she threw her head back, her hands and arms spasming in ecstasy. She arched so far back that all I could see was the crest of her breasts pointed toward the ceiling. Her hair brushed my knees. I put my hands on her hips to steady her while she rode it out. It was like fucking someone possessed. I felt her pussy clench around me. Hard. It should have hurt. Maybe it did.

My body felt like it was glowing. My hearing came filtering back a little bit at a time until I could hear the sounds of the room, the sound of my breathing. Melody was making a choking sound. I was gripped by a sudden fear that she was having some kind of seizure.

“Melody?” I sat up suddenly—heart pounding. I put an arm around her waist and the other behind her head to see her face. Her eyes were closed to slits. All I could see were the whites. Her mouth was open wide, a slack, gasping O. I shook her gently.

“Melody! Say something! Tell me you’re okay.”

Suddenly she gasped deeply, and her eyelids fluttered open and she let out a low noise of deep satisfaction before raising her head. I cautiously allowed myself to breathe again. Melody looked at me through heavy-lidded eyes. A half-smile played across her lips. Deep inside, her muscles gave a final spasm and she slumped forward against my chest to rest her head against my shoulder.

“Are you okay?”

“Ummmhmmm,” she mumbled against my neck and nodded.

A laugh escaped me, or maybe a sob. I hugged her against my chest, weak with relief, and lay back down on the floor with Melody on top of me. My whole body felt numb, empty. My feet tingled and so did my fingers. I was warm and floating even in the cool air of the basement. My chest and stomach—anywhere that our skin touched—was slippery with sweat, but neither of us wanted to move so we just lay together in silence.

I was drifting, half asleep when I felt myself slip out of her. Melody stirred, reluctant to move, but she rolled off me. She climbed to her feet and peeled off the condom.

“Bathroom?” she mumbled. I pointed to a doorway between a grandissimo Mexican flag and a faded Sex Pistols poster. She headed toward it on wobbly legs and flipped on the light.

With extreme difficulty I hauled myself onto the couch and laid my head on the armrest. It was a ratty old hide-a-bed upholstered in a thick tweedy plaid that was threadbare at the seams. It was probably older than I was. Now that I’d blown my load, I could feel exhaustion setting in. The nervous, unspent sexual energy was gone. My jeans were still bunched around my ankles—it was too hot to pull them up and my boots were laced too tight for me to take them off. Why did I even bother with boots? It was fucking August. I resolved to buy flip-flops.

It was all I could do to keep my eyelids open while I waited for Melody to come back. I heard her pee and the sound of water running. I was drifting again. I realized that I’d fallen asleep only when I jerked awake at the sound of the bathroom light clicking off. Melody emerged and picked up my dangling feet by the bootlaces to lift them onto the couch. Then she stretched out on my chest with her legs entwined with mine.

I took a deep breath of the smell of her hair and before I let it out, I was asleep.

*          *          *          *

When I opened my eyes again, Quetzalez stood over me in a terrycloth bathrobe staring at me through squinted eyes. He had a mug of coffee in one hand and a squirming white rat in the other. My heart lurched with adrenaline. The only thing keeping me from leaping to my feet was Melody’s naked body; asleep face down on my chest.

“’Zalez…”

“Don’t get up, man,” Quetzalez said in a low voice. “I haven’t had my coffee yet and I don’t need to see… whatever this is.”

“I can explain…” I began, but I couldn’t. My pants were bunched around the tops of my boots. I tried to pretend this was no big deal.

“Don’t bother. Imma go in the kitchen now. Wake her up. Get her dressed. Take her to breakfast. Don’t bring her back.” He shuffled toward the stairs, pausing long enough to raise the lid on a large terrarium housing a sleeping ball python. He dropped the rat inside and let the lid slam shut then stumped into the kitchen muttering swears. I prodded Melody’s shoulder.

“Hey,” I whispered. “Hey—wake up, sweetheart. We gotta go.”

Melody smeared her face across my chest and lifted her head. Her eye makeup from the night before was smudged and her lips were swollen with sleep. Her expression suggested I should go to hell. I felt my heart in my throat again, trying to not get turned on.

“…time is it?” she yawned.

“Early.”

“’S too early.” She nuzzled my neck. Her hair smelled like sweet corn. It was a smell I thought I could get to like. With a little sigh she rolled her head to face me. Her eyes were still closed but her lips pressed against my shoulder and reached down between us to wrap her fingers around my brand-new raging hard-on.

“No, no, sweetheart—” I whispered, fighting for control. It was taking every ounce of my self-restraint to not roll on top of her and fuck her like I was never going to see her again. I reminded myself Quetzalez was just upstairs. “We can’t—we gotta go.”

“’S okay…”

Melody began to stroke. Her grip was firm. I thought about baseball.

“No, it’s…we can’t stay here.”

She rolled on a condom while I tried to picture the Supreme Court justices. Anthony Kennedy. Ruth Bader Ginsberg. Clarence Thomas. My self-restraint drained away by the second. Melody arched her hips forward and slid onto me. Any control I’d had broke.

“Fuck.”

I was going to hell. Quetzalez was going to kill me. He was going to peel my skin off and wear it around the house like a jumpsuit. I stifled a groan against her breasts as she started to move against me in lazy, sleepy strokes. It only took me a few minutes to cum. Anxiety and shame exploded in my head. I was a shitty lover. She’d probably never want to see me again.

But Melody was in her own world of ecstasy. Her body pulsed around me and I felt the warm wind of her breath as she sighed in my ear before raising her head to kiss me.

That’s how you wake a girl up,” she mumbled against my face.

“We gotta go,” I gasped, winded like I’d just run a mile. “C’mon—we’ll go get breakfast.”

Melody made no move to get up, so I snagged my t-shirt from the floor and pulled it over her head. She was so small it covered her like a dress. Reluctantly, she dismounted and retrieved her panties from the floor nearby. I swung my legs over the side of the couch and pulled up my shorts and jeans before snagging a t-shirt from Quetzalez’s laundry pile. Melody was pulling on the short, jersey skirt that I vaguely recognized from the night before. She slid on her sandals without buckling them.

“Where’re we going?” She moved forward to stand chest to chest with me. The disheveled morning-after look made me stop and stare. She was so fucking hot. Her breasts made twin peaks beneath my t-shirt punctuated by the sharp points of her nipples.

“Umm, I dunno, IHOP or something. Whaddya want?”

She rose up on her tiptoes to kiss me.

“I want coffee. And a smoke. And something with chocolate in it.”

I would’ve given her my liver if she’d asked for it.

Game. Set. Match.

Worth it.

*          *          *          *

We went to a Greek restaurant that served breakfast all day. Melody had coffee, sweet. And eggs, runny. And steak, rare. And something chocolate. I wasn’t sure what I ate—or if I ate anything at all.

“You smoke?” she asked.

“When I’m on fire.”

“Come with me.”

We abandoned our plates and stood outside in the warm bathwater of an August morning. Melody rolled a cigarette with no filter and held it out to me to light it for her. I put it between my lips and got it started before handing it back to her.

“You were good last night,” she said.

“Thanks.”

“On stage, I mean,” she clarified. “In bed too, but I meant on stage.”

“I’m glad you came,” I said and I meant it. “To the show, I mean. In the sack too, but I meant to the show.” Melody smiled as I twisted her words back to her. She was still wearing my shirt from the night before. I resigned myself to the fact it wasn’t my shirt anymore with no regrets. It made her look hot as hell. I tugged at the hem of it to pull her close to me. “Can I see you again?” I asked.

“You can see me at the club.”

“No, I mean—” I wasn’t sure what I meant.

“I don’t got time to date every lovesick loser who gets a crush on me,” she said matter-of-factly. I wondered sickly how manyother lovesick losers she’d left dangling before me.

“Fine. Whatever. Nevermind.” I shoved my hands in my pockets trying to hold back my crushing sense of disappointment. Melody sized me up and seemed to soften. She put her arms around my waist and looked up at me through her eyelashes.

“C’mon, don’ be like that. I just…gotta keep it casual, y’know? I do like you.”

My laugh came out more bitter than I meant it to. “Well, that makes one of us.”

“When’s your next show?” she asked.

“I don’t know, why?”

“Get me a pass and I’ll come to your next show,” she said. “I promise.”

A beater of a Cadillac pulled up to the curb and honked its horn at her. I couldn’t see the driver. She glanced at her phone for the time.

“That’s my ride.”

“I could’ve given you a ride.”

“You’re sweet.”

“I’ll save you a dance.” She stuck the cigarette between my lips and kissed my cheek. My cheek I noticed, and went around the car and climbed in the passenger door.

“Hey, what’s your name, sweetheart?” I called after her.

“Melody.”

 “No, I mean your real name.”

“Melody,” she said again and blew me a smoky kiss. “See you around.”

And she was gone.

New chapters released every week. Come back and read the next chapter absolutely FREE!!

CHAPTER 16: THE EVIL SISTER will go live Monday, October 11th , 2021

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