Amorous Games – Advice #7654321

Posted on August 23, 2010


Herman wheels her into the Woman Store. “I’m not sure I feel comfortable with this,” she manages to say.

“I know why you’re worried. You shouldn’t be embarrassed,” Herman assures her. “No one is going to notice your wheel chair. Not in a place like this. Not in this store.”

She doesn’t care about the wheel chair and she doesn’t give a damn about the store. Her concern is with creatures not yet named and the quiet noise of fluttering insects in her guts.

The Woman Store is full of shapely mannequins and their numerous parts. Customers are shopping wholesale, retail, and for red tag sales. The scene is a mad search for various pieces of woman to replace those parts that have been tragically borrowed, stolen, and otherwise lost.

She turns to face Herman to assess his posture for man signs. Is he perspiring? Do his brows furl into spirals? What are his eyes fixated on?

“Don’t worry,” he repeats. “It will be fine. Okay?”

Herman keeps his eyes low, as if to tell her that he doesn’t notice the pretty women inside the store. As if he doesn’t notice the gorgeous legs they wear. He pretends not to see her savagely vacant stumps and quietly pushes forward.

“Over there,” she says. “I want to see those ones. What do you think?”

She has locked her sights on a svelte blonde mannequin with strong looking legs.

Herman looks, but not too eagerly. He doesn’t want to give anything away, she thinks to herself. He wants her to think that this isn’t a big deal, because that is how one plays amorous games.

“They seem nice,” he says, not too enthusiastically but with a degree of unmistakable candor.

“Can we afford them?” she asks.

“Anything you want,” he says, this time with more enthusiasm. He flags down a salesman.

“You’re in luck,” the salesman says brief moments later. “We have one pair left that should fit you nicely.” He heads into the back and returns with the legs.

The fit is snug but the skin tone and size are nearly perfect. She wears a weak smile and looks at Herman with restraint.

“Go on,” he urges, perspiration on his furled brows. “Try them.”

She stands and the entire store pauses to watch. This moment is the first time she has stood in twelve years. Feelings assail her — disorientation, fright, and pleasure. Her nervousness grows tidal, and she watches Herman. He is smiling, but not in a way that makes her smile. The smile makes him look like a dumb animal — a dumb animal waiting for dinner, she thinks.

“Are they comfortable?” the salesman asks.

The legs are comfortable, but she is not. She sees the other mannequins and has to blink away the image of all the beauty in the Woman Store. She looks down at her new feet and wiggles her toes. For a moment she wants to run, far and away, but decides to take things slow.

“They are very, very nice,” she says to the salesman.

“We’ll take them. No need to wrap them up. The lady will wear them out,” Herman says with pleased authority.

She looks at Herman and something inside her is still not satisfied. He is still smiling like a dumb animal. A dumb, stupid animal, she thinks. She wants to say to him, get in the chair, Herman. Get in that chair you, bastard. She wants to put her hands on him and push him and take his legs and take his smile. But she doesn’t do any of those things. She thinks she still loves him and that is how one plays these games.

She makes a mental note to save the receipt. Just in case, she thinks to herself. Just in case.