Tag Archives: wedding

Plaster of Paris; chapter ten, part one

“I’m going to see Paris,” I say defiantly, striding towards the room.  I positively itch for a confrontation, but this officer, yet a different one, lets me in as soon as I give her my name.  I sit down. “It’s a mess, Paris.  I’m no closer to finding out who did this to you, and worse yet, I quit my job today.  Sort of.”  I pour out everything, not wanting to bottle up my feelings.  As I’m talking a glimmer of something comes to my mind, but it’s gone.  I don’t try to push it because I know it’ll come to me sooner if I let it simmer.  I want more than anything for Paris to open his eyes, for him to smile at me, for him to come home.  “Oh, god,” I sob, my head dropping forward.  How much longer can I stand to see Paris like this?  I long to shake him by his shoulders until he awakes.

“Ma’am, it’s time.”  The officer carefully places her hand on my arm, her eyes showing sympathy.

“Mom, let’s get out of here for a bit,” I say to my mother in Taiwanese.  “Just you and me.”

“What about Lyle?”  My mother asks, casting a worried glance at Lyle who isn’t paying any attention to us.  “We can’t leave him here by himself.”

“That’s rude, you know,” Mr. Jenson says suddenly, interrupting our conversation.  “Talking in a foreign language in front of people who don’t speak it.  Besides, this is America.  Speak English.”

“There’s no mandate that says we have to speak English,” I say heatedly, a flush creeping up my neck.  We had been rude, but I am too edgy to apologize.

“Rayne and I are going to run back to her apartment for a bit,” my mother says evenly.  “Lyle, would you like to come with us?”

“I’ll stay here,” Lyle says, glaring at the Jensons.  Mrs. Jenson avoids his eyes, but Mr. Jenson glares right back.

“You sure, honey?”  Mom asks Lyle, squeezing his arm solicitously.  He nods, not taking his eyes off Mr. Jenson.  My mother and I reluctantly leave them.

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Rainbow Connection; chapter twelve, part one

The next morning, I awake with a start.  I impulsively call out to my mother before remembering that she had returned home the night before after delivering the edict that I was to call her if anything untoward happens.  I had retorted that everything in my life these days was untoward so I would be calling her continuously.  This morning, I awake with my heart pounding.  I had another one of those nightmares where I can’t remember anything that happened, but I can still feel the aftermath.  I stumble out of bed to get ready for work, feeling less enthusiastic about it than usual.  I start thinking about changing my job.  I’m almost thirty and have been a receptionist at one place or another since I graduated from college.  Now, it’s fine to be a receptionist at my age if in your spare time, you’re a struggling writer or painter or musician, but not if you’re just a lazy ass who has no direction in life.

I used to derive some satisfaction for a job well done, but no longer.  Each day is excruciatingly long, and my coworkers are really getting on my nerves.  I see the director of the agency sit on his fat ass all day long, doing nothing more important that decide where to go for lunch.  My immediate boss works hard, but she only puts in five to six hours a day.  Of course, Alicia, the wonder counselor strolls into work late and is among the first to leave.  It bothers me that I’m the hardest working person in the place.  I know that nobody is getting paid much money, but supposedly, we’re working for a greater cause.  Some of the counselors and teachers have been there for years doing the same thing year after year, sliding by.  In some ways, it’s a cushy job without much pressure to improve on performance.  There are no concrete objectives other than to graduate kids out of the program, which is subjectively decided, anyway.  If it weren’t for the kids, I’d find the job intolerable.

I sigh.  The idea of scouring the classifieds or surfing mega-job sites depresses me.  That’s one of the reasons I haven’t quit my job—inertia.  As frustrating as my current position is, it’s the poison I know.  There’s no guarantee that a new job will be free of the corrosive office politics found at my current place of employment.  Most days, this argument is enough to keep me, not happy, but complacent.  I trudge to work, hunkered inside my coat.  I hate San Francisco weather, though the Mission is better than the rest of the truly windy city.  Other people scurry by, grim looks on their faces.  San Francisco is more laid-back than NYC, but it’s slowly growing more uptight.  Another reason I like the Mission—it still retains some residual funk.  One such funkster holds his hand out to me, boldly staring in my eyes.

“You are truly a vision of beauty,” he beams, his dark brown eyes glowing.  His frame is gaunt with his walnut-colored skin stretched tightly over his bones, as if he hasn’t eaten in days.  I have a bagel in one hand, a cup of untouched coffee in the other.  I thrust both at him, and he doffs his hat at me before accepting.  “God will show mercy on your soul, beautiful lady,” he laughs, taking a bite out of the onion bagel smeared with cream cheese.  He closes his eyes in delight as he washes down the bite with a sip of coffee.  I hurry away, not wanting to be the target of his fulsome praise.  I make it to work with a minute to spare.

“Did you read this?”  Quinn asks, tossing the Chronicle on my desk.  She hasn’t darkened my foyer since her futile attempt to procure me as a present for her ‘roommate’ but appears determined to make up for lost time.  I glance at the front page, disconcerted to see Mariah’s face splashed across it.

“Second-generation Death,” the headline runs.  I frown.  They really need better headlines to grab people’s attention.  Although, the picture of a dead Mariah clutching a rosary is more than enough to turn my stomach.  I skim the beginning of the article which seems to be asking the question if death can run in a family, much like blue eyes or fat stomachs.  I wrinkle my nose in disgust.  There’s nothing new in the article, and it’s clear they are just capitalizing on the tragedy.  I’m about to toss the paper back at Quinn when something else catches my eye—a sidebar interviewing Carol.  She offers her condolences but takes pains to add that she thinks the latest death indicates there is absolutely no connection between the therapy group and the murders.  She goes on in this vein for some time before sliding in the obligatory mention of her book.  My mouth tightens.  I can’t believe she’s done it again.

“It’s that maid’s daughter,” Quinn explains, her eyes round.  I snap back to the present, pushing Carol’s comments to the back of my mind.  I make a note to myself to ask Carol about the article at the next meeting and not to let her off the hook.  Then I let it go.  “Remember I told you about my friend who was blackmailed by that maid!”  I vaguely remember the story.  I wonder if Quinn has any more useful information.

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Don’t Rayne On My Parade: chapter seven, part three

When I am through, I shut down my computer.  Ten o’clock.  Early to be going to bed, but it’s been a long day.  After getting ready for bed, I slip under the covers next to Paris.  I have a king-size bed because I like space as I sleep, but the bed feels small with Paris in it.  I am wearing a t-shirt and panties and still feel overdressed.  I turn on my side away from Paris so our butts are facing each other.  He turns over and snuggles up next to me.  We fit together well.  I listen to his even breathing as I drift along.  Just as I’m about to fall asleep, I feel his hand move from my waist down to my hip.  His fingers are curled over so they are brushing the crease that separates my thigh from my groin.  I don’t know if he’s doing it on purpose, but he’s crossing the danger zone.  I pick up his hand and put it back on his own hip.  A minute later, it’s back on my thigh.  I turn around to face him.

“Paris Frantz, you stop that.”  I am fierce with him, knowing it’s the only way to nip this in the bud.  I have miscalculated, however, since turning around puts my face inches away from his.  Even in the dark, I can feel him looking at me before I sense him moving forward.  His lips meet mine squarely, and his tongue separates my lips.  A moan slips out of my throat as he continues to kiss me.  I know I should put a stop to this, but it feels too good.  His hand is on my other thigh and rubbing in slow circles.

“Rayne, I need this,” he whispers after breaking off the kiss.  I can taste the alcohol and the toothpaste, and it’s a strange combination.  I feel his breath on my cheek as his hand moves up my thigh, over my waist, under my shirt and settles on my breast.  It’s as if I’ve been branded with an iron.  Jolts of electricity shoot through me.  Our lips meet.  Suddenly, I am angry that he is putting me in this position yet again.  He knows that I lust over him.  He knows that while we have always been very good at this, it’s inadvisable for us to have sex.  He knows all this, and yet, he doesn’t care.  Even as my body responds to his touch, my mind is quietly fuming.

“Paris, you have to stop,” I whisper back, my voice ragged.  Paris rolls me onto my back and props himself up over me.  My thighs part out of their own volition and the fingers of his left hand are sliding under my panties while his right hand is still occupied with my breast.

“Shh, darling, don’t say anything.”  Paris covers my mouth with his.  I know this is wrong.  I know we shouldn’t be doing this, but I am past the point of stopping.  I finally submit, deciding to deal with the consequences after it is over.  He moves his right hand to my arm and starts the slow, steady stroking that drives me so wild.  He is poised over me when I realize what he’s about to do.

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Don’t Rayne On My Parade; chapter six, part one

I pound on the door with my fist, demanding that Paris open the door.  Seven-thirty is never a happy time for me, especially when I hadn’t fallen asleep until one the night before.  I’m supposed to be there by eight-thirty which I’ll just make if Paris lets me in this minute.  Paris grumbles, the toilet flushes, then the door opens.  He bows with a flourish as he exits, allowing me full reign of the bathroom.  I sweep in and start the shower.  I brush my teeth and pee before hoping into the steaming water.  I like it as hot as possible without actually scalding my skin.  Paris, who prefers tepid water, shudders every time he sees the steam pouring out of the bathroom.  It’s one reason I like to shower with the door open—so I don’t seriously fog up the mirror.

After I finish my ablutions, I go to the kitchen to see what I can rustle up.  Paris is nowhere to be found or I’d coerce him into scrambling me some eggs.  I love scrambled eggs, but I’m horrible at making them.  They always turn out either overdone and rubbery or underdone and runny.  I don’t understand how I can systematically screw them up no matter how much attention I pay to them, because theoretically, scrambled eggs are a snap to make.  Not for me.  I even made them for Paris once for a special occasion.  I had to toss them into the trash and cook something completely different.  French toast, I think it was, which Paris had to tell me how to make.  Some present that was.  I open the fridge and frown.  I don’t feel like having cold cereal, damn it, I want eggs.  I can only hard-boil them with any semblance of success and that’s not what I have in mind, anyway.  I grab the carton of orange juice and pour myself a glass.  I pull out a whole-wheat bagel from the cupboard and toast it.  After it’s done, I spread some lite cream cheese on it.  This is my breakfast more often than I like to admit.  I am out the door by a quarter after eight and walk briskly to work.

“Hey, Rayne.”  Quinn greets me before I can even sip from the cup of coffee I have just poured.

“What’s up?”  I give her a perfunctory smile.  I am not wasting any charm on her until I’m sure that she’s interested.  I sit down at my desk and turn on my computer.  While I’m waiting, I keep my eyes firmly on the monitor so I don’t have to check out the perfectly luscious mini-skirt Quinn is wearing which falls to just above her knees.  It’s a deep purple, and her button-down shirt is white.  She looks good.

“Why so cold, girlfriend?”  Quinn places a hand on her hip, giving me major attitude.  Funny she needs to ask after her reaction to seeing Paris for the first time.  I practically had to hose her down, she was so hot to trot.  “I got dressed up especially for our date today.”  I say nothing, not wanting to admit that I put extra-care into what I am wearing as well.  Instead of jeans and a boring shirt, I am wearing black stretch pants with gently-flared hems and a emerald green blouse that can button up to the chin or show a little cleavage.  I plan on unbuttoning the top two buttons when we go have our drinks.

“I have a lot on my mind,” I manage to say as she stands there staring at me.  “I don’t mean to give you the brush-off.”  My computer has finally turned on, and I see that I have emails.  Several of them.  “I’m looking forward to having drinks with you after work.”  My tone is brusque, and it’s clear that I’m ending the conversation.

“Look, I know I made a fool of myself over your friend, but you have to admit he’s stunning-looking.  Don’t worry—I’m over it.”  She flashes a brilliant smile my way that does a great deal to melt my latent irritation.

“I guess it’s not your fault,” I say grudgingly.  “He is quite the looker.  I can’t take him anywhere.”  With that settled, Quinn flashes me a smile before bouncing upstairs.  I stare at her until she disappears before turning back to my computer.  I click on my inbox to see who’s giving me a shout-out.  Half of the emails are from Alicia, wanting one dumb-ass thing or the other.  I file them in my ‘to-do-much-later’ folder, then move on.  There’s an email from my mother informing me that my sister is getting married in six months and expects me to be there.

“Rainbow, don’t make this into an issue, ok?  I don’t understand why you and Liberty can’t get along.  Your father and I raised you better than that.  Peace.”  I click it over to my ‘moms’ files and have to laugh.  That’s my mother through and through.  However, I don’t know if I will be able to refrain from making my sister’s wedding an issue.  Case in point, her email to me.

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