“Jesus Christ, Beth, you left it wide open!”
“That doesn’t mean you have to stare!”
Danny stood at the top of the stairs, eyes frozen on the banana. Three of them shared the top floor apartment. Karen, their other house-mate, had already left for spring break.
“Danny, please close the door?”
She had rolled away to the far side of the bed. Half turned; she looked back over her shoulder. Thick black curls fell down across her back; above her hip, a small tattoo.
“It stands for power,” she said, following his gaze, “Now please shut the door.”
“I can’t,” Danny said, “you’re … you’re too beautiful.”
“God, this isn’t happening,” Beth groaned.
Danny couldn’t move. He watched as she looked around for some covers but the blankets and sheet had fallen to the floor. He could tell by the way she still held her hand the banana hadn’t moved either. He’d never seen a banana that big.
“I … I didn’t know. I mean, you always wear those baggy clothes …”
She moved and adjusted herself in a way that made him all light and butterflies.
“I mean, even what you were doing was …”
Her hand moved again, like she was putting it down on the bed beside her and then, to his utter amazement, she rolled toward him, arm at her side, blue painted nails resting on her hip, all that hair falling over her breasts and one knee crossing the other, the curve at her waist… the curve at her waist, nipples as he’d always imagined, she had even shaved a perfect triangle.
He stood there, staring, when suddenly her eyes went wide. Looking down, he saw an erection poking out from the leg of his gym shorts.
“Oh shit!” he said, and ran down the hall. In less than three steps he came, he couldn’t help it; his knees went soft and useless, a slow glide as if stepping down an elongated stair to the hard wood floor where he finally collapsed. He’d only ever kissed one girl his entire life; he’d always tried his best not to masturbate. “Oh God,” he groaned, feeling the last of it leaking out onto his leg, “Oh God.”
“Are you alright?” he heard Beth call from inside the room.
“Yeah,” he said quickly, a bit too loud, “I’m fine.”
Semen had splattered everywhere, milky white and wet on the mahogany boards. Hearing the bed creak he shot to his feet and ran to his own room off the kitchen. A t-shirt and jeans lay on the chair by the window. Grabbing the shirt, he scurried back out to the hall to wipe things down.
Beth had shut her door.
After, he lay on his bed and tried to read. Words floated off the page. He kept switching authors – first Milton, then St. Augustine, and finally, a last resort, Pynchon. “Damn it,” he said, swiping the pile onto the floor. He got up and walked back out to the hall.
“Beth, I’m heading over to the student center, you want anything?” He knocked on her door. “Beth?”
Trying the latch, it opened a crack. “Beth?” he said again, then pushed the door wide. The bed had been made, pillows placed neatly along the windows. Inside the wicker trash basket lay the long yellow peel, split among some torn papers. He didn’t see the banana.
published 18 June 2013