Monday, August 02, 2004

Rings like armor

She wore her rings like armor. Silver standing up between her knuckles, hardening her. The protection both coating her and lashing out from her. As much as they accentuated the slim gracefulness of her fingers those weren't digits you were allowed to touch. No gentle kisses could be pressed to the barbs that adorned them.

They made making love to her an even more valuable experience. This was not a woman to whom one gained entrance lightly. For him the tension was always palpable before they made love. Would she remove the rings? All of them? Because until the last one rested safely in the toe of her shoe the deal was unsealed.

One day they were the last thing she removed. For months afterwards he masturbated to the memory of her sitting nude and upright on the edge of the bed slowly removing each tiny cylinder.

More off-putting yet no less engrossing was the re-arming of her shields. One ring straightened her spine, another flattened her feet against the floor and those two, in concert, reorganized her face, making it fit again for public consumption.

When asked about her barriers in a coffee shop she simply smiled as though he were a darling but slightly presumptuous child. When asked in bed she turned to face him, folding her naked hands into tiny fists under her chin.

"I need them."

"You don't need them now."

"Now is different." She smiled.

And that made him feel special. So special that he stopped asking and kissed her bare knuckles.

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