Louisiana in July is like an obscene phone call from nature. Everything about is it moist, sultry, and secretive. If feels like Mother N is exhaling steam on your face. Sometimes it even sounds like heavy breathing. Dripping water, bayou bouquets, magnolias, and the mystery smell of river-scented streets that amplify sleaze. It is both an aphrodisiac and repressive, tender and violent. ...like him.
The Bronx Goliath: They are in the weight room of the hotel. His church. Taped hands make a steady rhythm on the punching bag in the far corner. He pivots on unlaced boxing shoes, hair in his eyes.
wrong reverie: 'N she's on the small balcony along the second floor gym smoking like a vintage rebel, not a cause in sight save for one. "You're doing it wrong," she languidly says and pitches the smoke over the rail before sauntering in like she wrote the book on fisticuffs 'n fury. "Higher," she remarks with a faux deep voice and pushes his hands up. "Protect your face." Isn't that what they say in the movies? Maybe it's been one too many late nights in the Big Easy.
The Bronx Goliath: He laughs and takes another jab. "Darlin' I was boxing years before you were a glint in your daddy's eye." Still he likes her closeness and leans back into her. "I'm sweaty," he
wrong reverie: His smile is more of an invitation to rouse him. Moving behind the bag, she peeks left. She smiled and then he blinked when it fell. "Was never anything in his eye." Doesn't matter. She moves for the chin-up bar and reaches up, but just hangs there like it's a grand accomplishment. "I want to meet the studio people."
The Bronx Goliath: "So you shall...at 2pm." He made three sharp jabs to the bag, springing from his heels. At 57 he was still a very fit man. "House ain't quite ready. Well the studio part ain't, but we can move in anyway. Hell, we paid the rent."
wrong reverie: She realized that she liked watching him like that. Fierce. Masculine. Violent. And for another few rounds she simple admires him, studies him. "Wrote some lyrics. About you."
The Bronx Goliath: Snickers. "Naw, you didn't."
wrong reverie: "Did." She drops from the bar and wipes her hands off on her bum. "It's too hot for this. Christ, it's too hot for anything here. I need a pool or a cold shower."
The Bronx Goliath: He steadied the bag, leaning against it. "Got a pool here. Shower's been christened quite a bit." He perused her in the tight undershirt, nipples prominent. Prettiest thing he'd ever seen. Times like this three little words bubble to the surface but he choked them back down. No need to be silly, old man. Everyone that met her loved her. He was nothing unique. "Just let me do my weights. Twenty minutes, tops. Did you bring a bathing suit?"
wrong reverie: She went three-year old on the floor and laid out on her back. The heat was suffocating this time of day. "No, but I can improvise with my red bra or buy something." This was not at all how she envisioned her life unfolding in the states. It was hardly storybook, but something about bayou country puts a soul at ease. "Any word if we're going back?"
The Bronx Goliath: "Back where? New York? You miss New York already?" He moved to the bench press with a grunt.
wrong reverie: "Didn't say I missed it. I dunno. Maybe I like hiding better." She has a lot of things going on in her head. Quiet time makes her psyche a vulture on her mood.
The Bronx Goliath: "It's gonna be okay," but his mood was already on the barbell he lofted, muscles taut. He counted to himself, finally replacing it with a clank. "Just don't wander off. This place is
The Bronx Goliath: a maze. Streets are named, not numbered. Carry a map until you are used to that. Most of the day will be spent recording. That's what you want, ain't it?"
wrong reverie: Is it? Gonna be okay? She wondered sometimes, a lot of times, but didn't always share her worry with him. Rolling to her belly, she's pressed up on her elbows, the round of her bottom peeking from the boy shorts. "Yes, that's what I want. That's what I need." Creative souls must find a release or it bottles for explosion or self-destruction. "Are you tired of me yet?" She peered back over a shoulder.
The Bronx Goliath: The raspy laugh that escaped his barrel chest was loud and genuine. He wiped his neck with a towel, then snapped it against one creamy butt cheek. "Are you outa yer goddamn mind?"
wrong reverie: "Ow!" Reaching back she rubbed the reddened half of her cheek. "Payback is tenfold, ya know? When you least expect it," she added scampering up from the floor to save her behind. "Like in Paris," she randomly moved back to the names of the streets. "It's more romantic that way. Could almost be a song...You sweaty." She dodged him for the door.
The Bronx Goliath: Still sitting on the bench press, he caught her wrist, pulling her back between his legs. He turned her away, gingerly pushing up the hem of her little shorts, and pressed his lips to the red welt that was already fading. He dotted little kisses down her thigh. "Come upstairs so Papa can make it better."
wrong reverie: He'd feel the resistance when he tugged her in. Fear that he was gonna add another swat. Instead, the kiss put a bow in her spine, goosebumps raced over her hips. Hips pivoted in his hold, her exposed navel barely brushing his chin. "I'll show you were it hurts."
The Bronx Goliath: "Let me search for it. More fun." As he kissed up her flat belly the door opened and a younger and older man entered. Father and son, perhaps? The younger eyed Jade longingly, the elder frowned with barely concealed envy. Rafael collected his gym bag. "Let's go," he grunted, and led her to the elevators.