Fiction
28 May 2018


She’d spent the day strolling along the city streets, caressed by the sounds, smells and noises of its inhabitants and she’d felt the familiar draw, the primal need to be torn from this place to somewhere deeper, darker where she no longer had to think.
To ground her body and calm her breath a moment , she’d sat a while on a bench and from behind her dark shades she previewed the scene in front of her.
This part of the city felt like a melting pot of people.
All inhabitants of the same small space on a planet, but existing, not existing or simply surviving and nobody really listening.
It once again served her as an example of how different people can experience the same things, the same truth in so many different ways.

“Ive been waiting for a guide to come and take me” she never ever left home without her headphones and the cacophony of noise opposite her was too much and some familiar tunes served as a soundtrack.

The actors and actresses in this scene played their roles flawlessly and Polly smiled and lay back a little on her elbows in the sun to enjoy.
A collective of tourists, swarming anxiously in this new place to which they had been delivered pushed and shoved to be within earshot of their disinterested guide who held aloft an umbrella. On this unusually sunny day in the bustling city it seemed to serve as both a beacon of hope for the fresh meat and somewhat of a dinner bell to the cruising pick pockets who eyed the brightest and weakest amongst the collective to feed on. Their excited questions, brightly coloured clothes and waving of maps looked like a shoal of distressed fish to Polly and she could see the shadows behind them come alive with those only too will to welcome them to the city.
Fresh and clean clothes and all their pretty labels contrasted with bodies held upright by tired and well worn stares and jawbones wrapped in stained hoodies and denims. Their eyes lost in their alternative world startled by a shiny bag or a mumble from a fellow traveller pulling at their elbow for something or nothing. The local clinics and their clients provided much needed contrast and it was clear the old cities darker habits were alive and well.
Mixed between the extremes on stage were a hip collective of Smombies, mixed across the stage. ‘Smart phone Zombies’ are a relatively new phenomenon, but Polly enjoyed watching them dance perilously close to the edge of the tram platform. Smart work suits, hipster beards, chic boots … eyes never lifting, fingers never pausing, white ear phone cables and illuminated screens guarding them, protecting them.
“#boredwaiting” ? “#notarsed” ? or “#OBVS LOL” ? whatever they were typing to who ever they thought was listening ? they trusted implicitly for an environment to move around them as they wandered aimlessly between the others.

Polly hit pause on her headphones and removed them.
Leaving her eyes closed, she remained seated and carefully opened her eyes allowing them to naturally adjust to the strong evening sunshine.
She breathed deeply and then relaxed her body further and really opened her senses to what she was witnessing.
No distinguishable voices, just noise.
Below that noise she looked deeper. She could see the pigeons come and go now to the shelters root, of the top of the ticket machine, to the patches of pavement still free from the crowd.
She saw how the came to land together, picking at seeds or remnants of food left on the tracks below the stage.
She saw them bicker, jump and postulate to obtain a place in the pecking order when all around them was disorder.
The need to matter, the need to avoid being alone, the need to travel and consume, the need for escape …. all captured in a scene within the city in front of her.
Are people that scared of really knowing themselves. Not who their friends are, not what they work at, not where they’ve been or what they’ve seen or how many followers or likes they have.
Tirelessly seeking to escape the here and now and what and who they are ?
The scene of this play ended abruptly for Polly, as a low rumble and a contrasting tone announced the arrival of the tram. The stage emptied, faces of all tribes now emotionless walked in order into the carriages, filling them to the brim before they were all shuttled away. Forced to exist together for better or worse but all doing their very best to ignore everyone else.
Guessing that the following scene wouldn’t be much different, Polly stood and began walking again.

At a bar in any hotel, in any city in the world seems like a good place to buy a drink and perhaps read a book. As a single woman it was also a nice place to sit, rather than be surrounded or potentially trapped at a table or forced to engage socially when all she wanted to do was relax and enjoy a drink. She enjoyed her own company. She also enjoyed the company of people who challenged her, enjoyed her idiosyncrasies but also called her on her shit when it needed to be said. The feelings from before had been satiated from a long walk and being immersed in a city. She’d enjoyed a cooling shower to freshen and the feel of her own fingers deep within her during it. When she had time with Jean she rarely showered wanting to have Jeans scent, the smell of her juices on her hands, on her body all day. She craved it. Always. However, after last night she’d immediately showered. She even asked for the room to be turned over late last night to remove all traces of that experiences before falling asleep.
As she stood under the free flowing water she twitched, aching the touch of her lover.
Jean had always left her spent, soaking and exhausted each and every time and her body and mind would replay over and over again each orgasm for hours and days afterwards. Alone in this city, she leveraged her memory and creativity to allow her to feed on the essence of those experiences, sucking her fingers before lowering them onto and into her own body. The long and deep probing stokes that raised her on her toes, made her back arch and her mouth gasp and cry out in contrast to the deep moans of the faster, lighter strokes of her fingers. Her warm and wet juices running now and mixing with the shower water that fell.


As she sat, her legs crossed in her black leather jeans and black stilettos at the bar, she pulsed and enjoyed the remnants of those feelings in the shower moments before as she sipped on her cocktail and opened her book.
“And, as if by magic ….” she muttered to herself as she sensed someone approach her.
She looked up and saw two men standing beside her.

“We just wanted to come say hey, and wondered if you’d like to come and have a drink with us ?” the more coherent of the two men blurted.
It was immediately clear to Polly, that these two met had been in the bar a while based on their demeanour and the fact that the bar man knew their order.
The book she hadn’t begun well so Polly dismissed the immediate response of ‘No thank you’ and replaced it with ‘You may buy me a drink, if and only if you can tell me who you are’.
“What ? is that a yes ?”
Polly wondered when had wearing clothes too tight for you had become a mans fashion, when socks seemed to be considered superfluous with shoes …. and had the news been preoccupied when rolled up jeans on grown men had somehow been deemed hip.
She also wondered was she going to have to draw them a picture with crayons.

“Who are you ? if you tell me … then you may buy me a drink … if I find either of you interesting”
“Excuse me …. I … “
“Who are you ?” Polly persisted.
“Well, I work in finance …”
“I didn’t ask you what you work at or what master you serve. I specifically asked you who you are ?” Polly stated with not a veiled note of threat.
After a very long silence during which her eyes never left those she had addressed, ways were parted and she got back to her book.

“I am intrigued always, I am always learning and I am always hungry for the edges of reason and I’d enjoy it if I could buy us both a drink” said a voice that resonated with confidence and intent behind her.
As Polly’s eyes looked in the mirror opposite her she saw his green eyes intently on hers, his dark skin contrasting the white shirt he wore under the dark suit that shaped him perfectly.
She closed her book and placed it to one side, before beckoning to the stool beside her.


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