tagErotic CouplingsRomancing John Cly

Romancing John Cly


Valentine's Day. Chick's holiday. Another excuse for women to show off for their friends, like weddings and anniversaries. Hey, look at me, my boyfriend bought me… what… more jewelry? Expensive flowers that are going to die in a day? Chocolates in a heart shaped box—I don't know why women like getting them so much, they won't eat them anyway because it might make them fat.

And what do I get out of it? A card with little construction paper hearts pasted on it, painstakingly assembled Elmer's glue so that the hearts fall off in a day or two, and God help Me if I throw them away. Then it's a teary-eyed question of whether I liked the card in the first place or if I appreciate anything she does for me.

And yet, this morning Sydney has that twinkle in her sweet blue country eyes, the twinkle that says, Thank God have a man on Valentine's Day. This entire day will be about posturing, posturing for Sydney and her girlfriends. They can all sit around laughing and giggling like schoolgirls, but their eyes will all be saying, My boyfriend is better than yours. And I'll have to play along, sit back with that smug look pasted on my grill that says to the other guys, Yeah, I'm better than you. Why? For The Sake Of My Woman.

Primitive man was allowed to club his woman and drag her back to the cave as a sign of possession. I have to buy mine diamonds. I might as well club myself and fall to her feet; it might be better than spending a thousand dollars on a bracelet. The diamonds are set in white gold, whatever the hell that means, but chicks seem to like it.

The Big Book of John Clay says, page one, chapter one, verse one: Fuck Valentine's Day.

Don't get me wrong, Sydney, my little blonde bombshell, is absolutely adorable. Raised in the depths of South Carolina. On a farm. A real farm with assorted farm-dwelling animals and livestock and whatnot. Christian upbringing. Not Bible-thumping, but Christian enough. Christ, we haven't even slept together. It's been six months, and some days I feel like I'm going to pop. Thank God for beer and porno.

But Sydney, oh Sydney, that little minx, she's so damn cute, and so damn sweet, and that little southern drawl of hers makes me want to scream sometimes. Johnny Clay, she often tells me, I'm gonna mold you yet, in that way Southerners seem to be able to cut up their sentences into three thousand extra syllables. It's one of her own little jokes; I don't think it's very funny, and I'm not sure what it means, but it's cute the way she says it.

And that's why I stay with Sydney. She's cute, she's sweet, she makes me want to scream. Isn't that why all men stay with women? Yeah, I know you guys are thinking, You bought her a thousand-dollar bracelet for Valentine's Day, and she won't even put out? Well, she gives a hell of a blowjob, even though she won't swallow.

The Big Book of John Clay says, page two, chapter two (yeah, okay, it's a short book), verse one: Never turn down free head.

Oh, Sydney's in rare form today. Her blue eyes absolutely sparkle as she shows off her new thousand-dollar bracelet to her friends. We're all sitting around a table in one of those restaurants where the waiters' uniforms are covered with buttons and they sing to you on your birthday. To be fair, Sydney only shows the bracelet off once, but the sleeves of her cashmere sweater are just a tad too short, and she gestures grandly as she speaks, the bracelet that broke my wallet glistening brilliantly in the light. Her friends, while trying not to look at it directly, can't keep their eyes off it. It's like a set of cats watching you dangle a toy in front of them, their heads all moving at the same time in the same direction.

And their men, oh how they hate me because when they go home tonight whatever they bought for their women just won't be good enough next to that bracelet. They're all giving me that little smile… all of them except for that Sneaky Shit Derek Wills. That Smug Little Bastard is just as calm as can be, and I'd love to know what he's up to. He bought his girlfriend a fucking set of kitchen knives; who buys their girlfriend a set of kitchen knives for Valentine's day? And Casey, that poor girl, is gazing at Sydney's bracelet with an even more powerful look of longing than the other girls.

"Nice job," that Sneaky Shit Derek says to me quietly across the table.

"Thanks," I answer the Sneaky Shit. The Smug Little Bastard leans over to his woman and whispers something in her ear. She's distracted, she says, "What?" So he repeats himself, a little louder this time, and I can hear, "I have something else for you outside."

They head to the exit, though the rest of the group is hardly distracted from the glittering prize on Sydney's wrist and the glib conversation that accompanies it. Already knowing how great I am, I turn my attention to Derek and Casey. I can't see them outside, but after a few moments, I hear a muffled female cry. Maybe finally, finally Derek decided to man up and drag his woman back to the cave.

But no, they return a few moments later, and I can see by the glow around Casey's entire being and the conceited look on that Sneaky Shit's face that the worst has happened.

The next moments are a flurry of female activity. There's a fat rock sitting on Casey's ring finger, the kind of rock that glows like the sun, the kind of rock that you actually have to finance and take out a second mortgage on your home and talk to the bank, like buying a new car without that wonderful new car smell and the convenience of transportation.

Even worse is what comes with the ring. A proposal. Proposal. The word that's used both in marriage and in business. What a coincidence.

The Big Book of John Clay says, page three, chapter three, verse one: Never marry.

Derek, that Smug Little Bastard, obviously never read that part. But, God Almighty, he proposed, on Valentine's Day. He won it all, the whole smash. Even Sydney's thousand-dollar bracelet has lost its luster. Sydney looks over at me, a tiny smile on her lips. I glance at the bracelet, then shrug.

A look of disgust flashes over her face for a split second, then she returns back to sweet little Sydney.

Now what the hell did that mean?


After lunch, we all break up and go our separate ways, the happy, newly-engaged couple floating away on a cloud. Mr. and Mrs. Sneaky Shit. The entire afternoon has been all about the fucking wedding, when, where, what the dresses will look like. It's been a bubbly, giggling nightmare, and I've been trapped in the middle of it, my thousand-dollar investment slowly turning into a thousand dollars worth of horse shit.

And Sydney's barely spoken to me since. God damn it, I hate it when I'm right.

When the rest of the group has departed, I turn to Sydney, who can barely look at me.

"Dinner tonight?" I ask.


"I'll meet you at Chez Louis? Eight o'clock?"


The Big Book of John Clay says, page four, chapter four, verse one: The word 'fine' coming from a woman is evil.

"Sydney, what the hell is wrong with you?"

"I said I'm fine."

"That's not what you said," I assert, "you said 'fine' not 'I am fine', it means something entirely different. 'I am fine' means you're fine. 'Fine' means you're pissed off, and I just want to know why."

"You know something, John? You are the single most shallow asshole I've ever met. I know what you're thinking, you're thinking this is all about a ring or a bracelet or a marriage proposal—"

"—some proposal, we all know Derek won't go through with it. What a great way to get a woman's attention on Valentine's Day, though—"

"—and that's what this is about, isn't it? You haven't learned a damn thing about women, have you?"

I look at her, the fiery little Southern Belle. I know all kinds of things about women, thus The Big Book of John Clay.

"Happy Valentine's Day, John Clay," she says abruptly. In a second, all I see is the flash of blonde hair, and then Sydney's exquisite ass moving away from me.

"Eight o'clock, Sydney," I call after her.

I refer back to The Big Book of John Clay, page one, chapter one, verse two: Valentine's Day sucks.


It takes me half an hour sitting in a seat at a reserved table at Chez Louis before I realize Sydney isn't coming.

I glance around the room; maybe she sat down at the wrong table. The place is filled to capacity with happy couples, jewelry sparkling, volumes of sappy cards being passed back and forth. There's one still sealed in an envelope with "Sydney" on it. There's a picture of a rose on the card, and inside it reads:

Roses are red

Violets are blue

This Valentine's Day

I'm thinking of you

It made me sick when I read it in the store, so I knew Sydney would like it. But Sydney isn't here.


When I arrive at Sydney's apartment building, I look up to the fifth floor. Her light isn't on. If she's not home, I don't have a clue as to where she could be. I hit the button on the intercom.

"Sydney, it's me. Are you home?"

Nothing but static.

"Come on, Sydney, let me up. Where were you tonight?"


"Sydney, buzz me in, we have to talk. I can't believe you forgot, I had a quiet Valentine's dinner planned for us, something special because I know you love this stupid—"

The buzzer interrupts me, and I hear the lock on the front door click. Finally the woman listens to reason. Much quicker than I expected, as a matter of fact. I guarantee, it'll take me less than fifteen minutes to talk her out of this little funk, and then we'll be back on her sofa making out as usual.

I step into the lobby, and before I make my way up the stairs, my attention is captured by a colorful bit of paper on top of the mailboxes. And it has my name on it. As I walk closer to it, I realize what it is: a piece of red construction paper with little hearts pasted all over it. Can I call it or can I call it? The Big Book of John Clay never lies.

I pick up the handmade card. Inside is a short note, reading simply: John, now is the time for you to learn something about women.

I look down at my feet. There's a little pile of tiny construction paper hearts on the floor. Jesus, they're falling off already. I bend down to pick them up, then I notice a trail of them leading to the stairs. The trail continues up the stairs. This is just too cute, even for Sydney. I'm going to have to have a talk with her about this.


The trail, of course, leads directly to Sydney's door. Covering the door, more construction paper hearts. Women really are predictable. This is really, really too much. Why do women torture themselves like this on a silly holiday? Men don't need drama or pageantry; I would have accepted a simple I'm-sorry-I-was-so-cranky-today-I-was-on-my-period phone call. But who knows how long it took her to do all this. Just for me.

I knock on the door and wait for an answer. From inside, I hear a husky Southern voice I barely recognize say, "Come in."

I open the door slowly, half expecting to be showered with balloons or confetti or some such girly thing. Nothing but darkness inside. I shut the door behind me and squint my eyes in the darkness.


There are no balloons waiting for me, no confetti, only darkness. I peer around the room, and I can just barely make out Sydney standing by the window, her petite figure outlined by the glow of a streetlight outside.

"Syd, what are you doing?"

"Johnny Clay," it's Sydney's voice speaking, I recognize the drawl, but it's not a tone I recognize coming from her. Her voice is dark, low. "You think you're so god damn cool, don't you?"

"What? Syd, I—"

"Shut up! Don't answer me unless I tell you." Her statement is as sharp as a knife fresh off the stone. "You won't speak unless I tell you to, do you understand?"

An amused chuckle escapes my lips. What is this girl trying to do, intimidate me? "Sydney, I know you're just trying to have fun, but—" I stop as she approaches me aggressively, and without warning, I feel the sharp sting of her palm across my cheek.

"Tell me you understand!"

"Ow, Jesus Christ, Sydney, what are you—" another slap lands on my face, and I'm starting to see stars in my line of vision. I had no idea she could hit so damn hard. If my father hadn't taught me not to hit women, by God, I'd—

"Answer me, you fucking swine!" I feel her fingers suddenly wrap around my wrist, her nails biting into my skin.

"Shit, Sydney, okay, okay, I understand." I have no choice but to do what she says. For one thing, I have no way to fight back against this, and for another thing, I'm suddenly aware, despite the fact that she looks like my girlfriend, I have no idea who this woman is.

"Hold out your hands," Sydney says sternly.

"Why, what's—" I can barely get another sound out of my mouth before I feel the shattering sting of her hand across my face for the third time. I shut my mouth; it seems like the best thing to do at this time. I'll no doubt add it to The Big Book of John Clay later.

"Do you believe I'm dangerous, John Clay? Answer me."

Her nails dig into my skin again, and I realize it's only a matter of time before she draws blood.

"Yes, yes, shit, yes. Ow, fuck."

"Then hold out your hands." I do as she says, and in a flash, she's wrapping something around my wrists, pretty tightly. I think its rope. Where the hell did she get rope?

When she's done, I test out her work. It's tight, but not cutting off my circulation. Still, I can feel that the rope isn't moving, and my hands aren't going anywhere. I'm impressed; even Boyscouts can't tie knots like this. But… what exactly the hell is she doing to me?

"Sydney, I'll ask you one more time, what the hell are you doing?"

"Get on your knees."


An irritated sigh escapes her lips. "I said, get on your goddamn knees, NOW!"

Once again, I do as she says. Never argue with a little southern girl who has you tied up. Another one for the book.

In the darkness, I can see her circling me like a predator. "I have some rules for you to follow, John. If you follow them exactly as I tell you, I won't hurt you. If you insist on being a disrespectful little swine, I promise you… " as if to complete her thought, she runs her cool palm gently over my stinking cheek.

The rules? She has to be kidding. This whole thing has to be some kind of joke. In just a minute, she'll turn on the lights, and her apartment will be decorated with more insufferable hearts and a hand painted 'Happy Valentine's Day' banner. We'll kiss and make up, and this ridiculous charade will be over.

"You'll speak only when I tell you," Sydney continued, "for that matter, you won't do a thing unless I tell you. You never, ever touch me unless I ask. And you call me… hmm, what should you call me?" There's a long pause as she circles around to stand behind me. "You'll call me 'Mistress' at all times—"


I can feel Sydney lean over my shoulder, her breath quick and hot against my ear, her voice menacing, but sultry at the same time. "Yes, that sounds nice. I'm your Mistress now, John Clay," her hand reaches into my hair, her fingers entwining, then clamping, then jerking back, "the sweet little Southern girl isn't here, and I'm the mistress you'll take when she's not. I'm your Mistress of the night, I'm here to lead you through the darkness of your ridiculous little mind."

My ridiculous little mind is spinning wildly. There's not a single verse in The Big Book of John Clay to help me through this, and I'll finally admit, I'm completely lost. Handling this little Southern girl should have been easy, and for the last six months, it has been. Be charming and flattering, win her heart. Flash her the sexy smile, she'll melt. Buy her flowers for no reason, she'll love you. Buy her jewelry for Valentine's Day, she turns into a raging beast, a force to be reckoned with, a figure out of the darkness that right now is scaring even the unshakable John Clay.

Ah, finally I remember page five, chapter five, verse one of The Big Book of John Clay: Never be afraid of women.

But the passage has now been crossed out, with a scrawling handwritten note in the margin that says, Fuck that. Be afraid.

My neck hurts, having been held at an odd angle by Sydney's strong hand for who knows how long while I've been collecting my thoughts. I glance up into Sydney's blazing blue eyes, and the most frightening thought of all occurs to me: she's loving every minute of this. I've never seen that look in her eyes, that look of pure and total… Christ, I don't even know what.

"Do you trust me," she asks softly, that lilting Southern voice finally recognizable to me. But no, the answer is no, I don't trust her, how can I trust someone I barely even know? I don't dare tell her that, not now.

"Yeah, of course I trust you, Syd," I answer, hoping to God she can't hear the apprehension in my voice. I know she heard something, however, as she jerks back harder on my hair.

"What did you call me," she hisses.

Oh shit, what did I call her? Damn it, man, your stupid brain is so cluttered with completely useless knowledge, half of it you made up yourself, now you can't even remember the simple rules. "Uh, oh, Mistress, of course I trust you… Mistress."

"How did you get so fucking stupid, John, you disgust me." And by the tone in her voice, I know she means it. Regardless, she finally lets go of the handful of hair and stands up straight again. I glance behind me and see light glinting off the bracelet I bought her. At least she's wearing it, I guess that's a good sign. She glances at the bracelet as well, then back at me with a scornful look in her eye. "Yes, my little swine," she coos at me, "we'll discuss this later. For now, I have a chore for you. Stand up."

A chore, great. Now she makes me clean her apartment or some damn thing like that to make me understand how hard women have it. She didn't have to hit me; I would have done it if she had asked nicely. I'm a sensitive guy.

Rising slowly to my feet, I turn to Sydney. For the first time, I have a good look at her, and I'm completely taken aback. In the dim light I can see flashes of perfect, pale flesh, clad in leather, lace, so perfectly packed, her petite body seems intent on pouring out of the outfit. I'm suddenly aware of an uncontrollable tingling in my loins. She has no intention of making me clean her apartment.

"Do you like what you see," Sydney says with a smile.

"Goddamn right," I answer dumbly.

She reaches out and takes hold of the ropes around my wrists, yanking me forward violently with surprising strength. "Don't you dare speak to me like that, fucking swine."

I've had enough, I'm through listening to this shit coming out of her sweet little mouth. "Okay, Syd, enough of this bullshit, untie me and we'll talk—"

Without warning, Sydney reaches up with her free hand and takes hold of my hair again. With amazing speed, she whips me around facing away from her, and now I'm in a precarious and highly uncomfortable position. Somehow, she still manages to keep me on my feet. In a moment, I feel her breath on my cheek again, and a slight tingle run down my spine as she runs her warm tongue along my earlobe. Between the pain in my spine the pleasant sensation of her tongue against my ear, my brain is firing in all different directions.

"We won't be talking about anything," she whispers sensually in my ear, "and you're not going anywhere except to the bedroom. I'm going to make you eat my pussy."

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