Zaftig Society Ch. 01byJorisKHuysmans©
A jangle of keys, then the slight suction of the door opening, as the weatherstripping let the doorframe go with a rubbery smack. Doreen pushed the door wide with the shopping bag and set her purse down on the foyer table under the mirror, nudging the dried flowers slightly. Then the bag was set down with a thump on the floor.
The house was silent, not just the absence of activity but the absence of any reason for activity, like a shuttered business, an empty bank vault. At first, after Paul's death, the silence had unnerved her; two years on, it was simply how the world was, airless and still. The door closed behind her and the vault was sealed.
She hoisted the bag up again off the floor and carried it to the kitchen, swaying back and forth with each step, like a penguin. Part of that was being put off balance by the bag— too many jars, but there had been specials on single serving spaghetti sauces— but part of it was her weight. Once her hips had swayed around to make her butt wiggle; now they swayed to get around her thick thighs.
She put the bag on the counter, then sank into one of the barstools, its metal legs creaking under her. A droplet of sweat ran down her neck and into her considerable cleavage, presently the color of blush on a peach. She could see her dyed hair reflected in the stainless range hood; no one would mistake the red-brown for a natural color at her age, but it favored her all the same, she liked it. It gave the impression that there might be someone to find her attractive.
She would put the groceries away in a minute but first she wanted to check the mail, which she had pulled out of the box in a bundle and dropped in the bag. Advertising circulars, credit card and funeral pre-planning offers— as quickly as they were picked up, they were dropped into the trash can. But then there was a square envelope, like an invitation. She tried to think if anyone's children she could think of were getting married. She flipped it over and there was a simple sketch, hardly more than a few lines, of a shape—
—the shape of a woman? It was vague enough that you could read a number of things into it. But as soon as she saw a woman's body, she could see nothing else in those lines. You're imagining things out of desire, she laughed at herself. It couldn't be meant to be a woman, she thought. Because if it was a woman, it was a fat one, and who would have meant it to look like that.
She popped the seal on the envelope and pulled out a handwritten card. At the top was the same simple drawing and the words "Zaftig Society." Below that was written:
"It has been suggested by one of our members that you are an unattached woman of the sort that appeals to our club. You are invited to our meetings. We assure you of the utmost respect and discretion from our membership, male and female. Dress code: glAmorous."
Beneath that were listings of a few addresses and dates; the next one was this Friday.
What in God's name? she thought. A prank, a joke. What else could it be. She dropped it in the trash, too, and in a moment she had forgotten it.
* * *
But she hadn't. The next day at the travel agency she owned, that she and Paul had owned, the strange card came into her mind. At first she couldn't even think of the name of it— Zippy, Zazzy— but it came to her. She decided to ask Muriel, one of the agents. Muriel was older than she was by a couple of decades, but she was one of those leather-voiced old gals who you know had once been quite the wild dish, back in her day. Which was the one being celebrated on "Mad Men" these days, more or less.
"Muriel, have you ever heard of something called the Zaftig Society?"
Muriel's eyes widened and she let out a laugh that could have come from a seal and smelled of cigarettes stretching back to the Kennedy years. "Now where did you hear that name?"
Something told Doreen that she should distance herself quickly from too close an identification with this topic. "I-- I heard a client say it to someone in his office," she said.
Muriel narrowed her eyes. "Well, let's hope he was talking about you," she said.
"Why? What does it mean?" Doreen said. She could feel herself blushing.
"It was a club, back when I was younger," she said. "A... swinger's club. A very posh one."
"Oh my!" Doreen said. "I hope he wasn't referring to me!"
"Take compliments where you can get 'em, honey," Muriel said. "It was a club for married people who liked a little action, but they weren't like most of them that were always trying to get the cute young secretaries. Like me," she said, and sighed. "They seemed to go for a more mature type of female."
"So they're not around any more, I hope."
"Christ, if there's any of 'em still around they'd be a hunnerd years old," Muriel said. "It'd have to be somebody pretty old to even remember the name. Who was it, old man Ferguson or somebody? That old goat—"
"I shouldn't say," Doreen said. "Doesn't matter." She went back to work, and was quiet and efficient for the rest of the day.
* * *
Friday came. The fact of there being a meeting of that club— that's how she thought of it, that club, the club whose name she didn't even say in her head— crossed her mind several times that day. Astonishing, to think that such things are going on in her town. That a nice house in Belle Plaine— that was the part of town the address was in— should have such secrets behind its front. That people should just do such things, at a real place with an actual address, and not far away in some half-real distant land... astonishing. She made herself a little piece of fish and some canned corn, then watched one of those TV dancing contest shows. The overt sexuality of the dancing, doing such blatantly suggestive bump and grind on TV— that too suddenly astonished her, that people would go and do things like that in front of a few million. It was one thing for actors, who were playing someone other than themselves, but dancers were, well, themselves. Was everyone like that now? Was she the last person alive who kept her sexuality out of public view, like all respectable women once did?
She dressed in a white nightgown and climbed into bed, and read a mystery book for a few minutes. But her thoughts kept turning back to the idea that all that was happening right now... she was too distracted to read, so she set the book aside and turned out her light. A few minutes on her stomach and she was uncomfortable; she flopped onto her back, the bed bouncing a few times with her weight. Her hand rubbed lightly across her belly, brushing her breast.
Then it did it again, no accident this time. Her fingers circled her nipple and a tingle ran through her. Ran through her like the distant echo of a much greater storm some miles away. She let both her hands rub her fat, floppy breasts, thinking what it had once been like to have Paul rub them, much more roughly with his big hands.
Had she enjoyed sex with him? She enjoyed intimacy, yes, but not in the same hungry, carnal way that he seemed to. That was the difference between men and women, she supposed. Only she felt much less difference just at this moment, and she permitted herself to do what she had done only a very few times since Paul's death— she ran a hand down into her pajama bottoms, wrenched her fat thighs open and spread her labia apart, sliding a finger into the wetness between. She began to rub, up and down, and to push back against her finger with her hips.
She thought what it would be like to have a man on top of her again— plowing into her, forcing her walls apart with his flesh, driving her broad bottom into the mattress. They were doing that right now, she imagined. Well, of course, many people were all over the world, one supposed, but in particular— she knew exactly where they were doing it, at this very moment, something she had never known about anyone else's sex life before. A picture came into her head; she knew instantly it was nothing like what this Zaftig Society was really like but somewhere, out of movies or something (though she couldn't think of any time she had watched this kind of movie). She saw a dozen beds, arranged as if the hours on a clock, and a dozen women lying on them, and a dozen men rotating from one to the next, climbing aboard, and penetrating them, sliding in and out, pressing their hairy flesh down on them.
She rubbed more furiously at the thought. A dozen women being... being fucked by a dozen men not their husbands, no one to them at all. Random men, landing on them like the hands of the clock and pushing their... cocks into them. She slid her fingers rapidly over her clit, rubbery and slippery and warming with blood and friction; her fat ass wriggled more furiously against the sheets, her big flopped breasts jiggled up and down, the bed beneath her was becoming wet as she frigged her clitoris and the feeling of orgasm began to build in her.
Everything about how one chose a man to have sex with was abandoned here— it was just fucking, a cock and a pussy coming together heedless of who they belonged to. It was against everything she lived her life by, but right now she was imagining it, imagining it happening to her, and as the orgasm exploded in her, she clamped her heavy thighs around her fingers and felt her pussy throb rhythmically, contracting one after another, around a finger. A finger, which wasn't big enough to be what she needed to feel in her right then.