Grazie, ma non chiamarmi “Signora”! Mi fai sentire vecchia :(
Devo ammettere di essere rimasto particolarmente colpito, in modo positivo, dal commento della Signora Janeygerton e anche dalla sua risposta in un perfetto italiano alla mia domanda. Mi ha scaldato il cuore, e non lo dico solo per essere gentile. Ho deciso di scrivere in italiano credendo, stupidamente, che nessuno mi avrebbe seguito, che a nessuno sarebbe interessato ciò che dicevo, ma mi sbagliavo. Una persona che stimo molto, anche se non la conosco di persona e non ho avuto molti contatti, ma che mi lascia spesso senza fiato per i suoi post e la sua storia. Qui su Tumblr si trova tutto, e se si cerca latex o guanti (di cui io sono un feticista parziale, nel senso che mi piacciono quelli lucidi, lunghi e stretti, ma non mi fermo al solo latex) si trova davvero tanto, ma tanto e troppo porno o foto che non dicono nulla. Non le sue.
Mi ricordo di aver avuto il primo contatto con la Signora Janeygerton forse un anno fa o più, avendo trovato sul suo blog delle foto (Qui) che avevo fatto purtroppo troppi anni fa e che avevo perso, insieme a molte altre e a un video, quando il mio hard disk ha deciso di abbandonarmi da un giorno con l’altro.
Ne riporto una in particolare, una delle prime che avevo fatto con questa ragazza, che all’epoca aveva appena compiuto 18 anni (anche se aveva iniziato a usare i guanti di latex già da un paio di anni, ma essendo minorenne non le avevo fatto foto):
Non avevo lucidato i guanti, non usavamo il polish, per cui sembravano una sorta di pelle molto lucida e sottile, e anche in giro per grandi o piccole città (noi abitavamo in una piccola città che contava non più di 15000 abitanti) a parte qualche sguardo o una seconda occhiata perché aveva le mani o le braccia nere, nessuno l’ha mai fermata o le ha mai detto nulla di offensivo o altro. E lei era contenta delle piccole attenzioni in più che riceveva, sopratutto in estate quando andava a volte in giro con una maglietta a maniche corte o senza maniche, i guanti lunghi e ovviamente gli immancabili anellini, braccialetti e orologio che fanno parte della bigiotteria di ogni ragazza di 16, 17 anni.
Ho vari episodi da raccontare, ma li lascio per dopo. Oggi volevo concentrarmi su uno in particolare, ovvero quello che l’ha vista indossare i guanti per quattro giorni continuati. Premetto che i guanti li avevo comprati io per lei, ovviamente non poteva entrare in un sexy shop alla sua età, e quindi li avevo pagati io e glieli “prestavo”, finché a fine luglio lei mi ha detto che sarebbe andata una settimana al mare con delle amiche in una casa di quelle che si affittano a giorni, e mi ha chiesto se potevo prestarle i guanti perché li avrebbe voluti mettere su la sera andando in discoteca. Io le ho risposto (da feticista carogna che sono) che glieli avrei prestati e anche regalati, quindi sarebbero diventati suoi a tutti gli effetti, se li avesse tenuti su tutta al durata della vacanza, ovvero quasi 7 giorni compreso il viaggio in treno. Lei non mi rispose subito, mi mandò un messaggio il giorno dopo dicendo che accettava, e che sarebbe venuta a prenderli con una sua amica. Venne il giorno stesso della partenza, e fui io stesso a infilarle i guanti fino alle spalle (un rituale che , chiunque abbia provato lo sa, ha un che di speciale e di vagamente erotico), e dicendole che mi sarei fidato di lei. Se mi avesse detto al ritorno che li aveva tenuti su, ci avrei creduto, ma la sua amica mi disse che avrei avuto la prova io stesso, e mi consegnò alcuni braccialetti di stoffa, quelli che ancora a desso i venditori ambulanti dicono portino fortuna e che devono essere tenuti su finché non si consumano e cadono da soli. Ne misi due o tre per polso, stringendo bene, ma senza farle male, così che l’unico modo che avrebbe avuto di togliersi i guanti era di tagliare i braccialetti, quindi me ne sarei accorto. Erano praticamente una versione non fetish di manette o di lucchetti per i polsi!
Alla fine li tolse dopo quattro giorni (avendoci fatto doccia, lavato i piatti, cucinato e andata al mare in bikini) perché al casinò di Sanremo dove andarono una sera si rifiutarono di farla entrare per via dei guanti… Non commento. Ah, per la cronaca alla fine i guanti glieli regalai lo stesso, e come potete vedere nelle foto del link sopra le comprai anche altro. Sfortunatamente ora non le indossa più e in parte si vergogna del periodo in cui li portava, visto i commenti del suo attuale fidanzato, che l’ha convinta che le persone normali non portano certe cose da troie.
O grazie, Querthe! Non me lo meritavo!
Pur essendo principalmente un feticista della gomma e dei materiali impermeabili e aderenti in generale, ormai è chiaro a chi mi ha letto in questo periodo che sono un amante anche dei guanti aderenti, strettissimi e possibilmente così lunghi da coprire tutto il braccio fino alla spalla.
Li trovo eleganti, sensuali e molto, molto femminili.
Allego qui sotto delle foto e dei disegni presi da Deviantart, con il link ai singoli autori, sperando che alcuni di essi siano di gradimento alla mia “amica” (metto le virgolette in quanto la conosco solo per alcuni post, ma spero che il mio sentimento sia reciproco) Janeygerton.
Dear all, thank you for voting. This is what you voted for:
Not very surprising, eh? But does that mean Lyra and Tori will live glovedly ever after and we are at the end of the story? Let’s mix things up a bit!
Dear Lyra, thank you for this wonderful night! I love you!
PS: I left a pair of satin gloves on your bedside table. Please wear them when you come to the kitchen. Now hurry up! Breakfast is ready.
If it wasn’t for the soiled latex gloves that I’m still wearing, I would think that the sex last night was just a dream. I have to admit that I don’t hate these gloves any more. I like their smell, and they look so beautiful on my hands, all shiny and slick. And though I have no further experience to compare, deep in my soul I feel that gloved sex must be better than ungloved sex. But what will happen now? Will I become like Tori? Do I want to have gloves glued to my arms all the time?
Getting my hands into the latex gloves was easy because she did the job for me, but getting them off turns out to be a lot more difficult than I thought it would be. I can’t just pull them by the fingers like wool gloves. She was right — latex gloves BECOME your skin. And grabbing the cuff and pulling like I’d do with rubber household gloves would tear them up, so I end up rolling the cuffs down my arm, bit by bit, and that reveals a pair of sweaty and exhausted arms with red pressure marks around the elbows.
Being free again feels so good that I barely remember what it felt like to have them on my hands while I inserted my fingers into Tori’s vagina. I know I liked it, but why would I want to do it again? My hands are naked now, and it feels good. There’s a reason why I’ve been resisting wearing gloves all this time. Yes, I confess that I’ve been tempted. Like that day Tori spilt jam over her gloves and I fetched a new pair for her. I looked at all those shiny satin gloves in her drawer and felt a faint impulse to try them on. But I resisted because the curiosity of the moment doesn’t change the fact that I don’t like to wear gloves. And here’s the proof. I’m holding in my hands gloves that have been explicitly made to provide pleasure, and I’m happy that I’m not wearing them!
I pull open the drawer of my bedside table and put in it my latex gloves and the satin gloves Tori’s left for me. Yesterday will have to remain an exception. And if she loves me, she will have to accept it.
After a quick shower, I put on a pair of jeans and a comfortable sleeveless shirt. I look at myself in the mirror and wonder whether the sex can be seen on my face. Like in films where they always know when a woman has had sex the night before (especially if it was her first time) because her face apparently casts the secret like radioactive glow. I don’t see any difference on me, but I feel it. It’s a new kind of happiness that I can’t recall having felt before. I may have found love for the first time in my life and that officially makes it a life worth living. I may have found a girl who loves me as I am. She doesn’t mind that I’m a country lass that grew up in a lost coastal town, or that I’m far from being as good-looking as she is, or… Will she love me when she discovers that yesterday hasn’t changed anything, that I’m still a gloveless girl? I wiggle my naked fingers and wonder what’s possibly wrong with them. They are feminine enough and my fingernails are
well-cared and clean. Why does she not like my naked hands? Why do I have to wear gloves for her to want to shag me?
I sit down on my bed like in trance. I’ll probably hate myself later for being weak, but I’m not going to risk it after all. I love her too much. I pull the drawer and extract the satin gloves. They seem to be new and unworn; I don’t find a single blemish on their soft and shiny surface. They are purple. I wonder whether she conscientiously chose the colour or whether it’s just a coincidence. Because their colour is perfect. Not too warm (as in sexy fiery red gloves) and not too cold (as in elegant blue gloves). It’s that shade of purple that’s pink enough to be feminine but not girly. Shut up, Lyra! How can anyone babble so much nonsense about something as irrelevant as the colour of satin gloves?
I take a deep breath and let my left hand slide into the glove. I pull the cuff over my elbow until it comes to rest well above the middle line between my elbow and my shoulder. Why does this glove have to be so long? Why do things that are supposed to be feminine and elegant always have to be of exaggerated length — high boots, cigarette holders, long gloves? Why does having this long glove cover my arm turn me on? I put on the second glove and smooth away the faint creases below the elbow and discover a feeling that surpasses my imagination. I’ve imagined many times what it would feel like to wear long satin gloves, but I had no idea that it would be so unreal. Imagine the two softest surfaces (my satin-covered left forearm and right palm) touching each other and there being nearly no friction. My right hand wanders down my forearm and engages with my left hand. They fold like in prayer and my satin fingers rub each other softly. My hands are touching, but at the same time
not touching! And I’m talking about my hands in third person because wearing gloves feels like they are not my hands at all and I’m officially going gaga!
“Lyra, are you coming down?” Tori shouts from the kitchen. “I know you’re awake. I heard you showering.”
“In a minute!” I shout back.
What shall I do? Stand up and go down! Meet my lover and give her a kiss and thank her for the most wonderful night of my life; be a good sport and show her my gratitude by wearing these satin gloves. This doesn’t mean that I will have to be gloved all the time. And even if yes, I’m liking it, aren’t I? No, don’t go there! I’m doing this only for her!
“Are you coming?” Tori opens my door. “Oh, my love, you look so beautiful!” She grabs my hand (she’s wearing a pair of red satin gloves), pulls me softly towards her and kisses me on the mouth. “Lyra, Lyra, I never want to see your naked hands again! You look so gorgeous, my darling! Now come with me. Breakfast is ready.”
We go to the kitchen, holding our gloved hands all the time, and are greeted by the aroma of freshly brewed tea, scrambled eggs with mushrooms and warm bread.
“Jam!” I exclaim. “I assume you’re expecting me to keep my gloves on while we eat, but I’m not very experienced.” My smile must be making me look devilish. “What if I spill jam on my gloves? It happens even to experienced glove wearers —”
“Don’t you dare!” She squints and points her gloved finger at my chest. “Don’t you dare soil your gloves on purpose!”
“Only if you confess that YOU did it on purpose.” I poke my gloved finger into her sternum.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about,” she says, hugging me.
“Oh no, you know very well! It was a ruse to get me to fetch you fresh gloves. You were betting on me trying on your gloves,” I say. “Feel free to grab a pair for yourself if you like,” I imitate her. “Very subtle, Miss Simmons!”
She gives me a soft kiss on the lips. “You’re crazy, Love.” She kisses me again and bites my lower lip tenderly. “Now sit down.”
She pushes me gently onto the chair, and I rest my gloved hands awkwardly on my lap. She takes her seat at the other side of the table. She rests her elbows on the table, props her face on her satin-covered hands and stares at me without saying a word, her eyes glistening like a teenager’s who’s fallen in love for the first time.
“What?” I ask.
Her lips bend up in a cheeky smile.
“What? You’re making me nervous.”
“You. Are. So. Beautiful,” she says. “And now you’re mine! I can’t believe it took a me a whole six months to get a pair of gloves to cover your hands, but I did it!”
“Wait, that’s…” I count back the months on my gloved fingers. “We met at the Bird and Baby six months ago. Does that mean you wanted to get me to wear gloves from Day One?”
She smiles and bats her eyelashes. “Do me a favour, Dear. Place your hands on the table. No need to hide them from me now that you’re wearing beautiful gloves.”
“Are they too ugly for you to look at them when I’m not wearing gloves?” I ask. She probably thinks what she just said is a compliment, but all I hear is: “Your hands are ugly.”
“Your hands are gorgeous, Darling. But wearing gloves multiplies their beauty a thousand times, and now that I’ve finally managed to turn you into a respectable glove-wearing woman, I want to see your hands gloved all the time. Show them to me, Love.”
“All right, then!” I hold my gloved hands up and wave them for her benefit. “Happy now?”
“That’s better. Now eat, Love. Before it turns cold.”
I take a mouthful of scrambled eggs. “This is delicious! Thank you.”
“So how does it feel?” she asks, her head still propped on her hands.
“Wonderful! I could get used to this sex thing.” I stick my tongue out and wink at her while mimicking clit licking. “Is there anything better than being in love? And waking up to discover that your girlfriend has prepared breakfast for you?”
“I mean how does it feel to have breakfast with gloves? Are you enjoying it?”
What the hell? Is that all she cares about?
“Isn’t it the most wonderful feeling?” she asks. “Aren’t you glad that you are a woman and that you can wear long gloves every day of your life, at home and in public, whenever you want? It’s a privilege!”
“Shut up, Victoria!” I slam my fork onto the table. “Tell me the truth, please. Do you love me? Did you want to have sex with me because you like me? Or was it just a game to get me to wear gloves?”
“Don’t be silly! I wouldn’t sell myself just so you wear gloves. I gave you my body because I love you.”
“Then, why don’t you tell me that you love me?” My voice becomes loud and shrill. “Why don’t you ask me what it feels like to have lost my virginity to you? Why don’t you tell me that YOU liked it? No! All you think about is gloves!”
“Well, forgive me for wanting my girlfriend to look beautiful. You’ve got the potential. All you have to do is don gloves, et voilà, you’re the most gorgeous girl I know. But no, that’s too much for Miss Lyra! She prefers to look like a tramp. Why should I settle for a tramp if I can have a princess? Now eat up before it turns cold.”
I’m too dumbfounded to say anything. I watch her and wait for her to yell “April Fool’s!”, but she doesn’t. Of course not, it’s bloody October! She knows that I’m watching her, waiting for her, but she takes her time. She eats a few mouthfuls of eggs, pours tea into her cup and drinks it slowly. After what feels like an eternity, she adds: “We had sex yesterday. You really think I’d do it if I didn’t love you? If you can’t understand that, that’s your problem, not mine.”
“That would be easier to believe if you told me that you love me,” I say.
“Haven’t I said it plenty of times, you dumb cow?”
“Of all the possible answers,” I say gravely, “you just chose the worst one. Congratulations, Victoria!” I stand up, grab my left glove by the cuff and pull it off my arm with disdain. The second glove comes off the same way and both land inside out on my plate (which is still untouched up to that first mouthful I took).
She jumps up and rescues my gloves. “Don’t! You have no respect for your gloves! Look, they’re dirty now.”
“I need to be alone for a while.”
She barely looks up as I leave the kitchen. She is too busy cleaning my glove with a napkin.
I go to my bedroom, throw a change of underwear into my rucksack, sling it over my shoulder and grab my keys and a cardigan. I hope Priya’s at home because I don’t feel like sleeping here tonight. I stamp my feet down the stairs, open the front door of the house and wait for a minute.
“Where are you going?” she shouts finally.
“I don’t know. Somewhere where I’m loved more than my gloves. And that’s clearly not here.”
I hear no answer. I wait for another minute, but she doesn’t come after me. Whatever she’s doing now is more important than I am. Damn! Stupid Lyra! How could I believe she loved me? All she wanted was to prove to herself that she can get me or anybody into her ridiculous gloves. That’s a sport for her, like hunting. And I just became her latest prey! I’m such an idiot!
I close the door quietly, jump onto my bicycle and ride away.
The wind dries the tears that run down my cheeks as I ride my bicycle towards the city centre. The one thing I dislike about myself is how easily I cry. Crying makes me feel weak and vulnerable and I hate that.
One evening of happiness, one evening! Am I the star of my own Truman Show? Who’s writing the script of my life? After so many years of loneliness, I finally fall in love for the first time, and I don’t even care that the object of my love is another woman. Other people would lose it — like Priya. She freaks out because I am a lesbian. She would go berserk if she was the lesbian! But I don’t care a bit because my love for Tori is strong. So strong that I let her take my virginity twice in one night — the sexual virginity of my body, and the glove virginity of my hands. All I expected in exchange was her love. I wanted to wake up next to her, look at her radiant face and hear her tell me that she loves me. Instead, I found an empty bed, a pair of gloves on my hands, and a pair on my bedside table. And bloody gloves was the only thing she wanted to talk about during breakfast! Is it my fault for expecting too much?
With all the commotion I didn’t get to eat anything except for a mouthful of scrambled eggs. I stop at the Cornish pasty shop on Cornmarket Street and buy a chicken-and-chorizo pasty. I usually avoid that flavour because hot and spicy food gives me a runny nose and makes me cry. But I welcome that today because that’s a better reason to cry than that stupid, self-centred girl.
I sit down on a bench and watch the shoppers on the street while I eat my pasty. They walk past me and have no idea what’s happened to me. They don’t know about my sadness, they don’t know that I wore shameful latex gloves for a woman who probably doesn’t love me. I wish I was one of those kids that hold Mummy’s hand and walk along without care or sorrow. Mummy is the biggest love of their young life, and they need so little to be happy. Why can’t my life be like that again?
I climb onto my bike and ride along the High Street. I accelerate after crossing Magdalen Bridge and ride as fast as I can. I want to feel the burn in my legs. Sometimes physical pain relieves emotional pain. I’m sweaty and breathless when I arrive at Priya’s house a few minutes later. I hope she’s at home because I have nowhere else to go and I don’t want to be alone now. I ring the doorbell several times, but she doesn’t open the door. Is she still sleeping? Damn, now that I need her! I call her mobile phone. No luck there either. Where can she be on a Saturday at ten?
Football training! When I was a new starter at the company she tried to convince me to join her football club. But I’m not much into sports so I said no every time. After a while she stopped asking. We don’t talk much about that part of her life.
If she’s at football training, where would that be? I wish I had paid attention when she told me. I ride to the South Park, as it is not very far from here. It’s a steep hill with a large expansion of perfectly kept grass and leafy trees around its perimeter. It’s unusually warm for mid-October and the park is full of young people running and jogging, families playing with their children or dogs, and students lazily lying in the sun; but nobody’s playing football. I wonder whether there’s a football pitch on top of the hill, behind the arboretum. No, probably not. I don’t want to walk uphill all the way to the arboretum and find out that Priya’s not there.
Where now? Didn’t she say something about Blackbird Leys once? I think I saw a sports ground the last time I was in that area. I’ll try that one, and if she’s not there I’ll go back to her house and wait until she turns up. I get onto my bike again and ride South along Cowley Road, then turn right towards Templars Square, and again left down Barns Road towards Blackbird Leys. When I finally arrive at the sports ground, I’m exhausted and sweaty. I see girls playing football on the third pitch at the far end. I get closer to the pitch and see Priya and a boy standing at the border of the football field and talking to each other, while two dozens of teenage girls are playing football.
“Priya!” I pant.
“Lyra?” She turns around and looks surprised. “What are you doing here?”
I let my bicycle fall behind me and throw my arms around her neck. “Tori is such an idiot!” I say, leaning my head on her shoulder and hugging her strongly.
“Marco, take care of the girls, will you?” she says to the boy. “You come with me.” She takes my hand, and we walk away from Marco and sit down on a wooden bench at the end of the green. Around the bench lies a water crate and a collection of tracksuits and rucksacks carelessly left on the grass. She picks up a bottle from the crate and gives it to me. “You look tired, girl! Did you have a good night?”
“I looked for you everywhere,” I pant. I sit down and she comes closer to me and softly strokes the back of my head. I lean my head against her hips and let her fondle my hair for a while. “Tori is such an idiot,” I say.
“I warned you,” says Priya. She takes my water bottle, unscrews the cap and gives it back to me. “Here, drink. What happened?”
“I don’t know how to tell you. I…” What was I thinking? How will she react to the news that I had sex with Tori? She’s been acting strange since I told her about the kiss. This could be too much for her. “Let’s not talk about that now.”
“Your call,” she says. She gets a water bottle for herself and drinks half the bottle in only a few gulps. “Aah! Unusually warm for mid-October, don’t you think?”
“I do.” I smile at her. “How old are these girls? Why aren’t you playing?”
“I do play, but not with them. I’m afraid I’m too old for that,” she says, sitting down. “They are our U16 team. Marco is their coach and I assist him.”
“You’ve never told me that.”
“I’ve told you many times,” she says, sounding resigned but not reproachful.
I feel ashamed as I realise that sometimes I behave towards her the same way Tori does with me — as though I was the more important half of this relationship. “I’m sorry, Pree. I promise I will try to take more notice of your life. I’m constantly talking about me, Me, ME.”
“Forget it.” She rests her hand on my knee.
Her hand remains on my knee longer than I expected, and I caress it. This touching feels strangely intimate. I look her in the eyes, but she doesn’t hold my gaze. Her hand starts shivering. I think she would like to pull her hand away, but she doesn’t. I guess doing so would be acknowledging the moment. It’s probably very awkward for her, and she resists to move away from me only to avoid insulting me. She’s so brave! I remember a French film I watched recently. When the protagonist’s schoolmates find out that she’s a lesbian, some of them feel threatened and are infuriated when they thing about the many times they have been in the locker room with her after PE class.
“So what happened with Tori and you?” Priya asks, still not looking at me.
I release her hand to uncap my water bottle, and her hand immediately slips away. I intentionally follow Marco and the girls with my eyes so that she doesn’t notice that I am aware of what just happened.
“Aren’t you going to tell me?” she insists.
How can I carefully tell her about my sex night? She won’t understand how much Tori’s behaviour hurt me this morning if I don’t tell her the premise, namely that I’ve fallen in love with her? I don’t just fancy Tori. I love her!
I’m saved by the bell. The girls have finished playing and are doing stretching exercises now; although some of them are just lying on the grass, their arms and legs spread like a snow angel’s. Marco comes to us.
“Y’awright, girls?” he asks.
“We are,” says Priya. “Lyra, meet Marco. Marco, this is my friend Lyra.”
Marco shakes my hand and fixates his muddy green eyes on me. “Glad to finally meet you, Lyra. I’ve heard a lot about you.”
“Hi. Sorry, but I haven’t heard about you before.” As usual, my mouth is ahead of my brain.
“Oh, how could you, Priyanka?” he asks, sighing deeply and rubbing the left side of his muscular chest, as if he was massaging his broken heart. “How could you not tell your best friend about me, your boyfriend? That hurts!”
Priya laughs loudly. “Don’t listen to him, Lyra. He’s not my boyfriend. He’s been hitting on me for ages, but he has no chance. And my name’s not Priyanka!”
“Oh!” Marco sticks out his lower lip and turns down the corners of his mouth. “So sad!”
“Go away!” Priya laughs.
He turns around and shouts at the girls. “Marie, stop lying around. Stretching! Come on, come on!” He claps his hands. “And you, too, Zoe and Anusha! Stand up and stretch.”
“But he’s a hunk!” I whisper into Priya’s ear.
“Lyra! I thought that was lost on you!” she says loudly and giggles.
“I’m a lesbian, not blind,” I say.
“Yeah, you’re right. He’s a hottie. But not my type,” she says.
“You two aware I can hear you talking ’bout my gorgeousness?” says Marco. “Really don’t know why Priya doesn’t want this piece-a good Italian meat.”
“You don’t sound Italian,” I say.
“Should-I speak-a like this-a, then-a?” he asks with a ridiculous accent.
“Sorry!” I blush.
“No worries! Just messing with you. My parents are Italian, but I was born here,” says Marco. “But really, why does your friend not want me?”
“Don’t listen to this pompous twit,” says Priya. “He thinks he’s the best man on Earth.”
He air-kisses her and laughs. Then he turns around and shouts at the girls again: “That’s enough, ladies. Get dressed and go home!” The girls come to retrieve their clothes, while Zoe, Marie and Anusha slowly get off the ground and plod over to the bench (they never stretched). “These three are my favourites,” says Marco, putting his arms around Zoe’s and Anusha’s necks. “That’s why they always do what they want. They’re not even lazy; just hate to stretch.”
“Oi, Coach! Wanna play a three-on-three?” asks Marie. “I’ll go with you and Priya, and your mate with these two.” She points at me, Zoe and Anusha. “Come on, Coach! Don’t be lazy! Sweat it a bit! Or you here only to flirt with Priya?” Marie speaks with a ridiculously fast London staccato, swallowing all her t’s and half the rest of her consonants.
Everybody looks at me.
“What, me? No, I don’t play football. And I’ve got no sports gear on me right now.”
“Come on!” Priya grabs my hand and pulls me off the bench. “Kick the ball with the girls for a while. Don’t be lazy.”
Marie grabs my other hand, and together they drag me onto the pitch. I hold out, but not for long. This could be fun and help me forget about Tori.
Priya and Marco are fast and skillful, but they mostly pass the ball to each other and make my teammates Zoe and Anusha exert themselves trying to get hold of the ball. But they allow me touch a ball or two even though I’m in the opposing team. That means they are good coaches — they want me to have fun. Not so Marie who is a killing machine. She plays like it’s a tournament, dribbling around the rest of us swiftly and shooting the ball like a barbarian. No mercy for poor Lyra! Zoe and Anusha are fast and strong as well, but not wild enough for Marie who scores one goal after another. I mostly run behind the ball all the time without hardly ever touching it. I let myself fall to the ground after twenty minutes.
“Enough, I can’t breath any more!” I pant.
Priya gives me her hand and tries to pull me up, but I pull her down and she lands next to me.
“Ouch, my elbow!” she complains as she hits the ground.
“Sorry, Pree!” I kiss and rub her elbow, chanting a healing rhyme I once heard on Spanish TV while on holiday. “Sana, sana, pedacito de manzana.” (“Heal, heal, small apple piece.” I know it’s silly, but as I said before, it takes so little to make children happy.) Then I hug Priya, and we giggle like children.
“So that’s why I got no chance, huh?” says Marco. “Get a room, you two!”
Priya’s face immediately turns dark. She stands up and goes to the bench without helping me up. “Get dressed and go home, girls. Go home, not to the shopping centre,” I hear her call.
“What was that?” Marco helps me up. “Why is she so angry?”
“Thanks.” I tap the blades of grass off my clothes and elbows. “I don’t know what’s wrong with her.”
She’s a bit homophobic, and you just called her a lesbian, I think, but I don’t say it out loud.
I go and sit down on the bench next to Priya while Marco walks around the pitch collecting footballs and plastic cones into plastic baskets. She regains her composure, puts her hand on my knee again and rubs my leg. It’s comforting.
When all the girls are gone, Marco comes and sits down next to us on the grass. He gets a packet of cigarettes out of his rucksack and lights up.
“You smoke?” I ask. “But you’re a professional coach!”
“Everybody needs something to take away the pain of living,” he says overly dramatically. “This is better than chocolate. Doesn’t make you fat.”
I like chocolate.
“Do you want one?” he asks Priya.
“No, thanks,” she says. Still, she places her hand on his, her middle and index fingers around the cigarette, and takes it from him.
“And you smoke, too?” I ask in shock.
“Not really,” she says, but she draws hard on the cigarette and expels the smoke through her nostrils. With smoke still coming out of her nose, she takes another cheek-hollowing drag and returns the cigarette to Marco. A few seconds later, furious jets of smoke leave her mouth and nostrils at the same time. She reminds me of a dragon.
“You look like you know quite well what you’re doing,” I say, shaking my head in disbelief. “For someone who doesn’t smoke.”
“I used to smoke when I was in uni. But I quit for good when I started working. That was three years ago. And then this fella comes along and makes me smoke with him after training. Blame him,” she says. “Are you disappointed in me? I thought you liked it. Remember the girl with the bowler hat? A couple of weeks ago on Cowley Road? I noticed how you eyed her when she lit up.”
“She was so bloody gorgeous! That’s why I looked at her and her girlfriend.”
“And her what?” Marco asks with a jolt.
“Don’t tell him. He’s such a pervert!” says Priya.
“Actually, you just looked super-sexy smoking,” I say. “But it doesn’t match the image I had of you. It’s like I’m getting to know a whole different Priya today.”
“Enough chit-chat!” says Marco, standing up. “You wanna have a pint somewhere?”
We go to The Original Swan, which is not too far from Templars Square, and have lunch along with our pints. After lunch Marco drives home in his car (he lives nearby), and Priya and I walk to her flat. Pushing my bicycle is not easy after the beef and ale pie I had. I shouldn’t have eaten so much, but I was famished after the football game.
“Marco seems to be a nice guy. Why don’t you give him a chance?” I ask.
“He’s not my type,” she says drily.
“But you’re going out with the wrong blokes all the time. He’s nice, you share a hobby, he looks good. The next time you complain about a bad date, I won’t take you seriously.”
“Sometimes it’s better to be alone than in bad company.”
“What are you talking about? You are comfortable around him. I observed you both at the pitch and at the pub. You could easily pass for a couple.”
“I’m coming to the conclusion that Mr. Right might not exist at all. Sometimes I feel I keep looking only because that’s what’s expected from me, but maybe I don’t need a man in my life.”
I don’t know how to interpret that so we walk in silence for a minute, with the rattling of my bicycle’s gears accentuating the silence.
“My sister’s having her engagement party in two weeks,” she says. “My whole family will be there — my grandmother, my aunts, my cousins. You’ve got an idea what that will be? ‘Oh, we’re so happy for our Divya, what a handsome fiancé, and he’s wealthy, too, and a proud Sikh, and what beautiful children they gonna have, and you, Bhanupriya, are any young men courting you? You’re not getting any younger…’ And it’s not like they’ll give it to me at the beginning of the party and then forget about it. No! One by one they’ll be coming, like the harpies, and nag at me all bloody afternoon. And what am I to tell them? That all the blokes I know are narcissistic children?”
“You think my mum doesn’t nag me about that? Why do you care? That’s anachronistic,” I say.
“First of all, don’t use words I don’t understand. You’re really sounding more and more like your girlfriend. Second, —”
“Anachronistic means out of the time,” I say.
“Whatever! My parents are Sikhs. For them, nothing’s more sacred than family. They were not happy when I said I wanted to become an engineer, but they let me. They were not happy when I said I wanted to live alone, but they let me. They love me and they are very liberal. But deep in their hearts they feel I’m a failure. I’m twenty six. I should be married to a good Indian man who takes care of me and my children, and I should have given them a couple of grandchildren by now. But I don’t want an Indian man just because they expect it. I want to be able to fall in love with whomever I like and not have to care where he’s from. But they won’t understand that —”
“Before you go on with your monologue,” I interrupt. “Can I stay with you tonight? I don’t want to go home and see Tori. I’m so mad with her.”
“Of course you can, Love!” she says. “You don’t need to ask.
“Huh? You’ve never called me ‘love’ before. Do you fancy me?” I joke.
Priya stops dead in her tracks and her face turns dark again. Like when Marco told us to get a room.
“Don’t look at me like that,” I laugh. “I’m just teasing you. For fun.”
“I’m not that desperate yet that I need to become a lesbian.”
“The ministry for homophobic clichés just called. Thank you for satisfying one more,” I say, patting her head as if she was a dumb child.
“I’m sorry! I wanted to joke back, but that came out wrong. I really didn’t want to…”
I don’t reply.
“Oh, come on. Please talk to me,” she pleads.
“Shut up, Priya!”
We walk in silence until we get to her flat on St. Mary’s Road. I’m not angry because she’s been putting up with my homosexuality rather well lately, but I let her think that I’m angry to teach her a lesson.
As soon as she opens the door to her flat, I sprawl myself onto the sofa. “I’m exhausted! You shower first. I need to rest,” I say, with my eyes already closed.
“Are you talking to me now?” she asks like a child asking her mum for forgiveness.
“Yes. Now let me sleep. Go away…”
Next thing I know, Priya’s shaking me awake, and not too gently.
“Wake up, Lyra. Don’t you want to have a shower?”
I come to slowly. “Just another five minutes…”
“You’ve slept half an hour already! You have to shower now. Come on!” She playfully pokes her finger into my ribcage many times. “Come on, sleepy head, shower!” Her hand crawls under my shirt and starts tickling my stomach.
“No, don’t!” I jump up. “No, stop that! What are you doing?” I slap her hand, but she doesn’t stop. “Stop it!” I say, tittering uncontrollably.
“Wake up, Lyra, wake up!” She giggles while she goes on tickling me.
“Stop it now,” I squeak. “Stop, or I’ll kiss you on the mouth!”
“Oh no, don’t you dare!” She doesn’t stop laughing, but her hands move away from my body instantaneously and she steps back. “Go have a shower now! You’re stinking,” she adds, demonstratively pressing the sides of her nose with her fingers.
I run into the bathroom and have a shower. I don’t remember when was the last time we had this much fun. This is the way Priya used to be before I told her about my bath with Tori. That day changed everything. Since then, she has been nice, but often distant and taciturn. But she’s different today. She’s not just happy again, but I feel she’s seeking intimacy with me in a way she hasn’t before. Perhaps she’s not aware of that herself. Perhaps I’m just imagining it.
I step off the shower and realise that I left my rucksack in the living room.
“Pree!” I shout. “I forgot my clean underwear in my rucksack. Get it for me, please.”
I hear her walking around the flat. “Here.” She knocks on the door.
I open the door slightly and stick my hand out to take my underwear. “Thank you!”
I don the clean underwear and my jeans, but I realise that my shirt is sweaty and covered in grass stains.
“Pree, can I borrow a shirt?” I open the bathroom door and step into the living room. “Mine’s dirty.”
“Sure!” she exclaims. Her eyes grow big and she bites her lower lip nervously. “I’ll be right back.” She walks backwards into her bedroom, never taking her eyes off me.
“Why are you so nervous? It’s not like you see me in my bra for the first time.”
“It’s nothing,” she says when she comes back with a clean T-shirt for me. “Well, actually… I found something in your backpack, and it surprised me.”
“What did you find? There was only my underwear.” I put her T-shirt on.
“If you call these underwear…” She bends down and picks up something off the floor. It’s two pairs of satin gloves. One pair is pink, the other one is black.
My jaw drops as if made of iron. “Is this a trick? Are you pranking me?”
“No! These were in your backpack when I took your underwear out. I swear.”
“Well, I haven’t seen those before, so you must be pranking me. Very funny!” I go to the kitchen and get a glass of water. “Listen how I laugh: ha, ha.”
“Can I try them on?” she asks.
“Suit yourself!” I go back to the living room and sit down on the sofa. “If you went through the trouble of buying them, you might as well enjoy them.”
“I’m telling you it wasn’t me.” She takes the pair of pink gloves out of their plastic bag and unfolds them. They’re opera-length. She throws one glove over her shoulder and sticks her left hand into the other one. In contrast to Tori, she does this unceremoniously, as if she was putting on socks or doing something mundane without any significance. Still, I feel a well-known excitement building up inside me as I witness how she puts on long gloves. There’s no remedy for me. I’m glove-damaged!
Her fingers are about to enter their sheaths when she stops. “Oops. There’s something in here.” She grabs the glove fingers with her other hand and pulls the glove off her hand, equally unceremoniously as before. “This must be for you, I guess.” She hands me a tiny envelope that was stuck in the glove.
I open the envelope, take a small card out and recognise Tori’s handwriting on it.
Dear Lyra, I knew you would go for the pink ones first!
Please accept this gift. As my girlfriend, you shall not wander the world without spare gloves in your bag.
Tori must have done this while I was sleeping. Sick bitch!
“What does it say?” asks Priya. She’s wearing both gloves now.
“It’s Tori’s.” I crumple up the card and the envelope and stuck them into my trouser’s back pocket. “It says they are a gift and no friend of hers should wander the world without spare gloves.”
“Thank her, please. I’ve never worn anything like this.” She runs her pink gloved hand over her own satin-covered forearm. “They feel so good on my skin!”
I understand very well what she’s feeling. I discovered it only this morning myself.
“How do I look?” she asks, looking at herself in the mirror and flirting with her image. “There’s something to plain clothes combined with fancy gloves, don’t you think?”
“You look gorgeous,” I say. And when she starts doing one of her Indian dances with lots of seductive finger movement, it’s my turn to bite my lower lip. The gloves make Priya more beautiful than ever. I could fancy her if it wasn’t for Tori. And if Priya wasn’t straight, of course. “Take them off. I’m returning them. Tori knows that I don’t wear gloves.”
“No, silly! She gave you these as a gift. Why would you give them back? Put the black ones on. You’ll see how amazing they feel!”
“No! I don’t want to know. Take yours off.”
She comes to me and sits down on the sofa. She takes my hand and caresses it with her gloved hands. I feel goosebumps form all over my body. “Come on! Try them on once. I will not make fun of you.” She opens the clear plastic bag containing the black gloves and extracts them. She unfolds them delicately and takes my hand. “Give me your hand. If you tell me you don’t like how that feels on your skin, I’ll stop bugging you. But you have to try first.”
I’m like in trance when she guides my hand into the black satin glove, but I react in time and draw my hand back before the cuff goes past my elbow. “No! I don’t want to feel it!” I pull the glove off my hand and throw it onto the floor. “You can keep yours on if you want, but I don’t want to wear gloves.”
“Why not?” She traps my hand in hers and caresses it again. “Feel this. Isn’t that the most amazing sensation? Don’t you want to feel it yourself? Only once! At least then you will know what you’re rejecting.”
“No!” My voice becomes louder. “I already know how it feels!”
“I do.” I hang my head and sigh. “Listen, Pree, I have to tell you something. I…”
She comes closer to me and continues caressing my hands again. It seems she can’t get enough of it. Will she ever take those stupid gloves off?
“You what?” she asks.
“I wore gloves for Tori. I… How do I put it? She forced me last night. She made me wear a pair of ridiculously long latex gloves. They covered my whole arms, up to the armpits! They felt like glued to my skin. And I wore them for her. I still had them on when I woke up this morning.”
Priya’s lips bend up into a huge smile and her honey-coloured eyes pop out in amazement.
“No, don’t smile. This morning she made me wear satin gloves for breakfast; like these,” I say, patting on Priya’s gloved hand. “That was so awkward, I barely ate anything! And all she could talk about during breakfast was gloves. And that’s why I’m so angry with her. I gave her my body! And all she cares about is gloves!”
Priya releases my hands and looks at me in utter horror. “You gave her your body?”
“We had sex last night. She started it, and I enjoyed it, and THAT was the most amazing thing I’ve ever experienced, but she stopped before I was finished. And she wouldn’t continue until I let her put those gloves on me.” I start crying. “And this morning I was so happy because I thought I had had my first time with someone who really loved me, but it turns out all she wanted was to make me wear gloves. I feel like raped,” I sob.
Priya closes her eyes for a second and when she opens them again with a huge sigh, I can see her broken soul behind a cloud of tears and pain.
“No, Pree! I didn’t want to scare you,” I say. I try to touch her gloved hand, but she pulls it away. “She didn’t rape me. I let her shag me because I really wanted to. But this morning all she cared about was whether I had liked wearing gloves, and that makes me so mad! I mean, how hard is it to say ‘I love you!’ to the girl you just deflowered?”
“You had sex?,” she asks slowly. “So she’s your girlfriend now, for real?”
“I love her and nothing would make me happier, but I fear she just used my love for her to get me to wear gloves. She can’t stand the idea that her housemate could not like gloves as much as she does.”
“Did you like it?”
“I’d have preferred to do it without gloves —”
“I don’t give a shit about the bloody gloves!” she shrieks. “Did you like to fuck with her? Did you like to be fucked by another woman?”
“I did,” I say, surprised by the intensity of her reaction.
She stands up, takes her gloves off and lays them on my lap. Her hands are shaking. “I need to go. I’ll be back later.”
“Wait! Where are you going?”
“I need to digest this. You had sex with another woman, and you liked it. I don’t quite know how to cope with it right now, so give me time, OK? You can stay here as long as you want.” She goes to her bedroom, comes back wearing a jumper and leaves me alone in her flat. Like I did with Tori this morning, but in contrast to me, Priya slams the door shut.
That leaves me so shocked that all I can do is stare at the door. I recline against the sofa. I would like to cry now, but I can’t. I don’t feel sadness or pain. It’s rather an incommensurable void deep in my chest. Less than twenty-four hours ago, I was the happiest woman on Earth. I had a girlfriend who took my virginity in the most beautiful way imaginable. Now, I don’t know if that woman is a girlfriend who wants to share with me her kink for gloves, or a selfish narcissist who would do anything just to prove she can achieve whatever she proposes herself. And the only friend I have in this town, the one on whose advise I was counting when I went off looking for her this morning, just left me alone instead of helping me. I close my eyes and let myself sink into the sofa cushions. I need to stop thinking for a while or I will lose my sanity.
It’s already dark when I wake up. I get off the sofa and drag my sorry arse into the kitchen. First, a long evening of passionate sex, then an all too short night followed by a manic bicycle ride looking for Priya, a football game with those wild hens, and now this uncomfortable nap on Priya’s sofa — this has been a long day, and my body’s aching.
How long has she been gone? Three hours. She told me to stay as long as I want, which means she was not planning to return any time soon. I’d better go home. There’s no point in me being here without her. I hope Tori has gone out. I don’t feel like facing her tonight. Tomorrow we have plenty of time to argue about bloody gloves.
That reminds me about the gloves Priya found in my rucksack. I decide to give them to her as a gift. After all, she clearly enjoyed wearing them. Tori’s probably not going to be happy about that, but they are my gloves. I can do with them what I want.
I write a note for Priya explaining her that she can keep the gloves. I pick up the gloves off the floor, fold them neatly, stick them into their plastic bags and place them on the living room table. But what if she goes directly to bed when she comes back and doesn’t notice them? I decide to leave them on her bed.
When I’m standing next to her bed, I change my mind again. I don’t know why, but I decide to leave the gloves in the drawer of her bedside table. A pang of disappointment hits me when I pull the drawer and find a tall silver packet of cigarettes. She lied to me! She does smoke regularly. But why haven’t I noticed before? I don’t remember having smelt smoke on her, and we spend a lot of time together. On the other hand, the packet is still wrapped in its original plastic foil. It could have been in this drawer for a long time. Maybe since she quit. After all, what bothers me is not so much the smoking as the fact the she obviously has secrets she doesn’t share with me.
I leave the gloves on her pillow and put her cigarettes back into the drawer. I’m about to shut the drawer when a book in it catches my attention. The cover shows two teenage girls holding each other’s hands and admiring the sparkling ring one of them is wearing. It looks like the other girl just gave the ring as a gift to her friend. Hooked by the suggestive image, I take the book and go back to the sofa. Three pages into the first chapter, the protagonist, Liza, tells how she met her friend Annie at a museum and how they pretended to be knights on horses battling each other with imaginary swords and lances.
That’s the story Priya told me about when we were at the Ashmolean! I haven’t forgotten about it because she said that Annie and Liza become good friends, but they get into trouble because they are from different backgrounds, and that she learnt that feelings don’t matter when social rules need to be accepted.
I make myself a cup of tea and continue reading. Two hours later I’ve read nearly a third of the book. The story is beautifully written and makes me empathise with Liza and Annie. Reading it feels like becoming Liza and experiencing firsthand how they get to know each other better and better, how their liking for each other becomes stronger naturally and casually.
My hands start trembling when I discover that Annie and Liza don’t just become good friends, like Priya told me, but lovers. I read for another half hour until I am sure that I’m interpreting it correctly. Yes, Annie and Liza are lesbians! They know that they are going to have a hard time, that they will have to fight for their love, but they don’t doubt that what they are feeling for each other is true love. They are frightened because they know that their love will hurt their families, but they do all they can to be together.
I close the book with a shriek. Priya lied to me again! She said Annie and Liza were just friends. I jump to the last page. The last sentence of the novel reads: “I love you, too, Liza. Oh, God, I love you, too!” And Priya said that the book taught her that feelings don’t matter!
I run back to her bedroom and replace the book in Priya’s drawer. I don’t want her to come back home and catch me reading it. There must be a reason why she’s been hiding it, and why she lied to me about it. But why did she mention it in the first place? I walk in circles around the flat, and I start chewing on my fingernail. Flipping! I haven’t done that for ages. Not again! My head starts spinning when the implications of what I’ve just read become clear to me.
Wow, what? We thought Lyra and Tori were at the end of their journey. We thought Lyra had secured Tori’s love. And Tori thought she had turned Lyra into a glove girl for good. But Priya also wants to have her say in this story! What will Priya do next? How will Lyra react?
Time to vote! (If you don’t have a tumblr account, go here: http://www.easypolls.net/poll.html?p=53c5dde1e4b0602ff83c4a48)
Dear followers and soon-to-be followers,
I’m proud to present my novel (not only) for glove lovers. It tells the story of young Lyra Walker, who leaves her parents’ home and goes to Oxford to discover her secrets and her destiny. In Oxford, Lyra meets Tori, a ravishing and dominant beauty who wants to share her love of gloves with her, and Priya, a good-hearted and loyal friend haunted by a secret of her own.
Chapter Five — read and vote now!
More chapters will follow.
Enjoy the read and don’t forget to vote! At the end of each chapter, you decide how Lyra and the other characters will react to the stones that life throws onto their paths.
And don’t forget to comment! All feedback is kindly appreciated.