The flap of her trench coat flogging her hamstrings and the clicking of her high heels, interjected by the occasional car horn, orchestrated into a jazz song whose groove was leading me into an ever-darkening part of the city. I didn’t want to mess with the harmony and rhythm by asking too many questions. The suspense was killing me, and if my fears were true and she indeed was a serial killer of men, she’d probably have her way with me before submitting me to a slow, painful death. The clicking stopped. The darkness was such that I could only make out her pink coat floating like a ghost in the distance. As I walked closer to her, I realized that we had arrived at a large apartment complex, and she keyed in a code.

“When we get upstairs,” she said, “you’re going to do exactly as I say, whatever it is I say. Got that?”

“Yes,” I said, immediately remembering what I was supposed to call her. “I mean, Mistress. Yes, Mistress.”

She looked at me with the frustration of a doctor being called “mister” too many times.

“You know that once you step into this building and into my apartment, you waive all of your rights?” she said. “As a citizen of this country, as a person, as an animal.”

“Yes, Mistress,” I said, swallowing to buy myself a few seconds to process the binding verbal contract.

“Once you walk into my bedroom, I will hurt you in ways you’ve been hurt before and in ways you’ve never thought you could be hurt.”

“Yes, Mistress.”

“I will hurt you physically as well as psychologically and emotionally. The things I will do to you will not be easy to forget.”

“Hey, guys,” a man walked out of the building. The speech may have been broken, but I continued to feel my throat constricted by the coils of her hand. The venom punctured into me through her red lips’ sweetness and sultry voice was slowly working its wonderful malice into my mind.

Her eyes were full of my blood and this wiped the smile off the man’s face and scared him away.

“When we are finished, you will be in pain for many days after, but you will soon feel the need for more,” she said. “That’s when you’ll know that you’re mine.”

“Yes, Mistress,” I said as I saw the scared man run into the night.

The more she described the damage that my body would experience, the easier it became to answer her, as if reading Scripture antiphonally in church. She was the priestess and I the sacrificial lamb. I wasn’t afraid of the physical pain, but of the pain of losing out. Leaving her was still an option, but by doing so, so would my ability to forgive myself for allowing a woman of her sexual prowess to pass me by. The rush of anticipation, exploding in every fiber and tissue, could barely hold my body together. The bile coating the walls of my throat tasted sweeter the more I focused my mind on what she was asking of me.

She keyed in the code into the keypad once more and opened the door. She seemed nervous. When she noticed that I looked concerned, she placed her shades back on her nose covering her eyes, held the glass door open, and motioned with her head for me to get in.

“Well, what are you waiting for?” she asked.

I looked at her eyes—full or lust and desire—and remembered something she had mentioned to me on the bus.

“Just one question, Mistress,” I said. “Do I really remind you of a 15-year old girl?”

“No,” she said. “It was just a test to see how you’d react to a little bit of humiliation.”

“Oh, okay.”

“Besides, I was way stronger at 15 than you’ll ever be in your entire life.”

She walked into the building, releasing the door. I snuck my foot in before the door could close and ran inside as a child ready to receive a punishment he didn’t know why he was getting.


Sunday, September 29, 1985

8:34 p.m.

Roger Buckley was a friend of my aunt Greta, one who was an international business student at the University of San Diego, and boarding a room at her house. He took a special interest in me ever since we first locked eyes.

He was sitting quietly in the library, sipping bourbon from his glass, not once looking at me as Aunt Greta paraded me around the large house. For the few minutes that I stood in the library waiting for my aunt to resume her tour of the house, I couldn’t help but stare at the quiet, dark-haired man, seated in a cross-legged position, dressed in a charcoal grey, three-piece suit. I couldn’t see his eyes, but I never wanted to see anybody else’s as much as I wanted to see his. There was something about the way he was delicately holding the glass with his strong, veiny hands. The serenity with which he brought the lip of the glass up to his mouth, sipped, slightly bared his teeth from the tartness, swirled he large ice cube in the glass twice, and set it back down on the coaster next to him. The condensation gathering on the surface of the faceted whiskey glass mirrored the sweat beads forming on my back.

When he finally looked up in one sharp, fierce stare, I froze. He could have walked over, grabbed a fistful of my hair, and dragged me down to my knees. He could have made me his slave, do with me whatever he wanted, and I would have been perfectly fine with it. He looked younger than what I had imagined a college student would look like, but too old to be 17 like me. Is he angry that I’ve been staring at him this whole time? I wondered. Roger picked up his glass, sipped an indistinguishable amount of bourbon, winced a little, and swirled the ice cube twice— which was melting before my eyes as I was before his. He never once broke eye contact, and neither did I. It was as if I were staring directly at the sun, blinding myself in the process, but not wanting to look away from its incandescent beauty. As Roger placed his glass back on the coaster, he broke the ocular bondage that had kept me from breathing, from thinking.

“Ready to go to your room, sweetie?” Aunt Greta asked.

I snapped out of my daze as my bones jumped out of me.

“Are you okay, dear?” Aunt Greta said. “You seem feverish.”

I looked at Roger and noticed a grin on his lips, the first time the line of his lips had made any sort of movement that wasn’t horizontal. It wasn’t caused by the bourbon’s aftertaste, but by the one he had left on my body. On to which I would rub a pillow between my legs later that night. I looked away, upset at his smugness.

“Yes,” I said. “I’m fine.”

“Good,” Aunt Greta said. “Roger, will you be joining us for dinner tonight?”

I was looking forward to finally hearing the voice of the man who had dominated me with his mere eyes. I held my breath, and bit my bottom lip, expecting it to be low, deep, and sexy.

“What am I saying?” Aunt Greta barged in. “Of course you’re having dinner with us.”

I wanted to introduce myself, or at least have Aunt Greta do so for me, but she was too aloof. Mom had always complained about her sister’s withdrawnness, especially when it came to social cues. Besides, Roger had already seen my deepest, darkest self, all in a matter of minutes. I felt wet and naked even though I was wearing two coats, boots and a beanie.

“Come along, dear,” Aunt Greta said from down the hall. I was so focused on not looking stupid in front of him that I had lost track of my aunt. “Let’s get you settled in.”

When he realized that Aunt Greta had walked out, Roger’s eyes daggered up at me again and caught me in their trap. In the shock of the moment, I didn’t feel scared or alarmed, but strangely at peace. It was as though I could trust him with my life, with my body. As I started to retreat from the room to the door, barely able to move my tranquilized legs, neither the hallway walls nor the door between them could defuse the ardor building in my chest and throbbing clitoris. By the time I got to my room, my panties were soaking wet.

I took them off and lay on my bed. Before my hand slid past my belly button, I heard a knock on my door. A folded sheet of paper slid under the door. I picked it up and it read:

“What are you afraid of?”

“Not of you,” I said, as if the messenger was still on the other side of the door, as if the messenger were Roger himself.

“Then why do you tremble even as you read my writing?” Roger said.

A rush of adrenaline ran through me as I suddenly felt the urge to pee.

“Because I know what’s coming next?” I said, not really knowing what was coming next.

“What is coming?”

“You. You’re coming.”



For all installments from Blood Knot, click here.

Previous installments:

  1. Part 1