by Joey Delgado
A compliment is candy to the heartbroken, oxygen to a suffocating flame. The best hunter picks his prey carefully, selecting his line like an archer pulling an arrow from a quiver, quickly and efficiently, then flick! the line cuts through the air and immobilizes the target, leaving it at the mercy of the hunter.
“Has anyone told you that you're very statuesque?,” the hunter asked me. Those eight words patched up my broken heart— sure, patched it with spit and reconstituted Bazooka Joe—but Jesus it was patched, just like that, after all this time. The hunter saw in me something my boyfriend never saw, someone statuesque, maybe someone regal, Grecian, and now my boyfriend was gone because he couldn't see it, couldn't see me. But the hunter could, and did, and he was right in front of me.
He bought me drinks and we danced under pulsing strobes, grabbed at each other in the thin veil of fog pumped from beneath the DJ's booth. He asked me if I wanted to get out of there, and I said I did. You can picture it. Those same words have been said the same way since the first time strangers met each other in a public place and decided they wanted to have sex. It's always said with urgency, too. It's not: If we don't get out of here we can't fuck. It's: If we don't get out of here all these people are going to see us fuck. The fucking is imminent.
We parked beneath a flickering lamp outside a Denny's. It was three in the morning, but the diner was bustling, all the frenetic activity visible to us from the cab of his darkened pickup truck.
We kissed, aggressively, like we were giving each other life's breath, the air thick with the smell of sweat and cheap well alcohol. He pulled away and looked at me. “You have the most beautifully sad eyes I've ever seen.” I looked down, embarrassed and flattered.
Then the spell broke.
In his hand was his cock, semi-erect and almost comically u-shaped. A thatch of the longest pubic hairs I'd ever seen surrounded his penis. The whole thing looked like some Lovecraftian monster emerging from a dark, hellish netherworld. Out of a misplaced sense of duty I gave it a few half-hearted tugs, a few up-and-downs before he pushed my hand away and took over. Every now and then he'd say, “Watch this,” or “See that?”, or “Like that, just like that,” until it was over.
I was overtaken, simultaneously, with the urge to laugh and vomit.
I opened the door and did the latter.