Thursday, January 10, 2013

Eric and Michael meet...

“Hello,” he said, standing to the side, so I could get a better view of his crotch.
            “Hi,” I replied.
            “You are new here. You work for that crazy Czech bitch upstairs, don’t you?”
            “You are Michael, right?”
            “How do you know that? Have you been spying on me?” His eyes narrowed into slits and he edged behind his books, leaning lightly against the rear of the truck, teasing the wood, swaying on the tips of his toes from side to side.
            “I am a spy,” I said, “I have eyes everywhere. You had better watch out.” I whispered confidentially, lowering the Atlas I was carrying, glad I held a whole planet behind which my desires could hide.
            “If you are a spy, tell me who you work for?” He moved from behind the book truck.
            He had nothing to hide.
            “I am a freelancer. I sell my secrets to the highest bidder.”
            “Well, I’m pretty high so you had best pony up, Mr.,” he said, tossing his head and his hair back with a gotcha laugh, and slapping the top of his truck with such farcical force it caused one of the books he had been in the middle of shelving, something by Hemingway, I think, to slump to its face between us, leaving poor old Papa a defeated but delirious man, ass in the air, eyes closed, mouth open wide.
            “I’m Eric.”
            “I know who you are. I have spies, too. I know you live in Brooklyn. I know you have a boyfriend. I know everything about you,” he said, looking down, “even your dick size.” He brandished his copy of The Idiot, as if he would club me with it. “My spies are Russian. I asked them to find out who that guy was working for Misha. I might want to fuck him sometime.”
            I didn’t know what to say.
            I nearly dropped the world I was holding.
            “I caught you there. Didn’t I? Didn’t expect that. Listen, you are new to New York. You are from Boston. I will do all of the talking. I’m from Detroit. I have lived here for two years. Let’s get a beer first, after work. We can go to The Abbey.”
            Here, he paused.
            “It isn’t gay.”
            Another pause. His eyes narrowed again.
            “Are you gay?”
            “No. Are you?”
            Under the circumstances, without actually unzipping and taking each other’s pulse there and then, what else could we say?

            “Good. I go to The Abbey after work all of the time. The barmaids love me. Meet me at five o’clock at the main entrance outside.”
            With that, he carted himself, Dostoyevsky, my heart, and everything resembling Reason away.
            I turned around, leaned out the door and watched him go down the corridor. He bent, slightly,  steering the truck with one hand while he adjusted his cock with the other.
            He was right handed, too.
            I leaned the atlas against the wall and also fixed mine.
            I was glad nobody ever came to this section of the library.
            It was now ours.
            I shut off the lights and went over to the window and looked up at the sky.
            It was getting dark.
            It was snowing. A few light taps struck the windowpane. I expect the snow was general all over Long Island, including the borough of Brooklyn, where Nat lay in a fever, dozing under a warm green satin quilt of Nyquil all day.
            By now, my erection had subsided.
            I could go back to the office.
            I would see Michael in an hour, at five.

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