It’s been two days, no word. She can still feel him. His touch is still on her. Her cunt still aches. His stale body odour still clings to her. It’s been two days since she was ensnared in his embrace; naked, and crushed under his weight. Inside he came and her body got to work immediately, hormones destroying anything that could potentially make him a permanent part of her. Rejecting him.
Gone. Two days on. No word. The morning after her head spun. He’s not gone, still here, I can smell him. She placed one foot on the floor to support the weight of her hangover, clinging onto the pillow as if it was his torso, and opened her eyes. Not gone. Here inside me. Between her legs, was a pulsing pain. The weight of his love, it had been hard and fast. I love him. He didn’t stay. No, still here. I can still feel him. Her body heaved vomit into her cheeks, which she spat out into the toilet: reddish-yellow.
Two days earlier he called: “Have you eaten?” She hadn’t. “Is anyone at yours? I can bring food over.” She cleaned and got wine and ensured the music was good and playing for when he arrived. She wanted him to know, this is how she always is; orderly and rational and with good taste in music.
“Sorry, Aimee and I ate all the chicken last night, but it still has potatoes in it and stuff.” Ex-chicken curry. Last night’s meal. Seconds. No meat, half sustenance. Two days on, the plates remain an unwashed reddish-yellow.
She wrenched. Her eyes streamed, her nose ran, she squeezed her legs tightly together to prevent his fluid spilling. I will not let him leave me.”
As she hung over the toilet bowl her body continued to expel the food he had prepared. The food his hands had chosen and touched and cut and stirred and spiced. Out of her system, all gone but for the remains in the bowl. Her stomach muscles continued to heave but there was nothing left inside. She wrenched. Her eyes streamed, her nose ran, she squeezed her legs tightly together to prevent his fluid spilling. I will not let him leave me.
“Where’s Aimee tonight?” The question had been running through her mind all evening. Was he going to leave her and return home?
“She’s visiting her parents for the weekend.” No, he’ll stay. Then half-cut they became entangled. Once again. Always out of town. He will stay. One day he will.
Two days. No word. Aimee must be back by now. Something’s wrong. She clenches her phone expectantly and sniffs at her shoulder. His scent is fading, being covered by her own. Fearing her sweat will remove him from her she lies down, the cold bathroom floor against her naked back. She remains there hopeful that this time her fingernails left a mark; that she pulled them across his back firmly enough. She starts up. Then he’ll come back to me. She flushes the toilet and turns on the shower. She’ll need to be clean when he returns.
Mandi Goodier is a writer who has developed her practice through artists’ books, self-publishing, sound and performance. Her work is held in various collections including the CFPR Artists’ Book Collection, Bristol UWE, Goldsmiths University of London Special Collections and BABL Artists’ Book Library. She is currently working on her first novella.