I was standing in the middle of a highway next to a dead body in the rain. I was pretty sure it was my car that killed it. Killed him. I think. The head was a mess, but the body wore men’s trousers, button up shirt and tie, and a black, long overcoat. But enough about the corpse. It’s not about the corpse.
It’s about her. Cause this is the story of how I met her, and how she saved my life, and made it a lot more fun over a short period of time.
You know what I’m talking about.
A car was coming fast towards us. I had stopped in the middle of the road when I felt that sickening bump, and the awful thump the body made as my tires gave it the once over.
The headlights blinded me, and I instinctively put my hand up in front of my face even though it did fuck all to help. The rain made everything worse. I could see the car stopped. I heard a car door slam.
And then there she was. Just her outline as she stood in front of her headlights. I couldn’t see any detail, but the detail I saw was enough to make me forget the rain, the blinding light, and the corpse bleeding all over my shoes.
Then, just to make it all the more interesting and improbable, there was a flash of lightning and thunder. I saw a flicker of a face, but it’s the full lips I noticed.
“What happened?!” She had to shout it over the rain.
“I think I killed him!”
She only nodded. “You want a lift to a phone to call the police?”
It took me a minute to swallow that she didn’t seem concerned at all that a man got crushed to death.
In her car, which was a sweet little roadster, I asked her name. She said, “Rosemary” with an emphasis on the R, and weighting the S into a Z, which made my palms sweat.
I forgot my name.
I figured out later why she wasn’t so concerned about it. After all, the dead man wasn’t going to get any worse. She drove me to her house to use the phone.
The one in her bedroom.
The phone in Rosemary’s bedroom was on a table next to her bed. The entire room had a rose theme. The furniture a white wood, with carved vines running up the legs. The bedspread was also covered with bright red roses with giant thorns.
I sat on the edge and picked up the phone to all the police. It was white, and one of those models from the twenties where you had hold the ear piece to your ear and speak into the base.
The line was dead.
That wasn’t much of a surprise. The storm was going harder than before. Lightening and thunder came in quick succession.
I guess the corpse on the highway, the man I hit with my car, would have to wait out the storm. I doubted he had anything better to do.
Suddenly, there was a drink in my face being held by a hand with long tapered fingers. It was the left hand and on the ring finger was a ring throwing a giant party and invited every expensive jewel in the world.
“You like rocks?” I said, taking the drink. Our fingers brushed on the glass. Mine were still wet from the rain. She didn’t seem to mind.
“I’m a passionate collector,” she said with a wide smile.
“Rocks, flowers, butterflies,” Rosemary said, and sat in a large, plush chairs across from me. It was one of those really comfortable chairs that one puts in one’s bedroom and never sits in. Maybe this was why it was there: to sit in when one entertained a stranger who just killed a man, and the phone went dead before the police could be called, and there was a drink in one’s hand, and a moment of hesitation: do we go into the living room, or do we stay in the bedroom and see how this scene plays out?
I guess Rosemary wanted to play this out. When she crossed her legs, the white material of her dress cascaded and tumbled around her legs and I felt the bottom drop out of me.
I took a long drink of whatever she gave me. It was very sweet, but very good.
“What is this?”
“Ambrosia. Nectar of the gods. Cheers.” She took a drink.
“No, seriously. You haven’t poisoned me, have you?”
Rosemary laughed, and recrossed her legs as if giving me another chance to see what I might have missed before. I didn’t. And the second showing gave me a bit more to see.
“It’s ice wine. Very rare, very expensive, and very special.”
“Is this a special occasion?”
“Well, one doesn’t kill a man in the street every day.”
“That’s not actually funny,” I said.
“You didn’t kill that man.”
I blinked at her. What was she talking about? My car ran over him. I felt and heard thumping and sickening cracking.
Then she smiled widely and refilled our glasses, explaining as she did so, “From what I examined of the body, you ran over his legs. His head had already been crushed in. He was dead long before you got there.”
This was a tremendous relief. “Are you absolutely sure?”
Her hair was long, curled at the ends, swayed about her sweet face like billowing curtains. I wanted to reach up, but I managed to behave myself.
Then, Rosemary decided to misbehave and tucked a lock of my wet hair behind my ear. Then she said something that changed the mood. “I ran him down long before you go there.”
Cue the lightning and thunder combination and me shivering. I finished what was in my glass, gulping the sweet, expensive nectar of the gods.
“It was my husband,” she said as answering my question. Maybe I asked one. I don’t remember. She refilled my glass. “I kind of need you to take the fall for this, though. Don’t worry,” she said, sitting next to me on the bed, her lips brushing my ear. “I’ll make it worth your while.”
I had no doubt.
I wandered in the forest that went behind the world
Miserable and wicked
Clutching my hair cut hands
An escaped enchantress
A miserable and wicked woman
Fallen from the window
Fallen from the bride
In the forest that went behind the world
I looked for the the descending door of despair
I am old
I dared love charming braids
But the climb
Was my dearest joy
My open window
Write a poem using the words in the cloud. If you need additional ones, that's cool. Then post it in the comments.
Something great went yawning
Just in time for the tea party
I’ll interrupt the mad tea-things in the garden
With something personal,
Some daring yawning
It went well around the little table
I pinched every reply
The Treacle went murdering
The Hare shook the table
The Hatter spoke of wine and butter
It is dreadfully a beginning
And a grand uncomfortable remark.
It was the latest thing: skin and muscle removal, complete exposure of bones, including the head. (Plastic surgery, even in the 23rd century, still marches on).
They met at a wedding. In those days, weddings could get rather risqué. Some were as sanctified as a mass, and others requiring, at the reception, consummation and turn-taking with the bride. These two met at the latter.
The reception hadn’t yet achieved the “bride and groom’s first dance” portion of the evening. They met at the buffet. It’s astounding how much easier it is to flirt and be honest when one doesn’t have a face. It’s less than a mask and more of an extreme statement of naked truth. No need to worry about blushing or bad skin or splotchy complexions.
He owned a brothel and she designed and manufactured prostitutes. In fact, he his company preferred her prostitutes to others because of their human warmth and animated facial expressions.
These two didn’t bang at the reception as everyone else did. They took the taboo option of sneaking away and getting breakfast at Denny’s for their 4am Pancakes and Porn special (all the pancakes you can eat with porn on every TV). To the sounds of people fucking loudly and with fake enthusiasm in the background, and smushing their pancakes into a pools of syrup, they honestly told one another about every terrible thing they’ve ever done.
To their relief, they discovered they weren’t terrible after all, as the other didn’t storm out offended.
Did they eventually bang? Did they become friends? Did they dismantle any other parts of their body?
All that is important, really, is that they never kissed. They couldn’t without lips. But that was fine because kissing had always presaged danger and misery. And these two managed to avoid that.
This some impressive acting talent. His very expressive face tells us everything we need to know about Pete Dunne. He says he likes to hurt people. We don't doubt him. Even when he says it calmly, we believe it even more. He isn't out of control; he isn't a beast. He's a high functioning psychopath, and that's the most frightening person he could be.
Dunne carries all his belts like animals he's killed with his bare hands. He even carries them in his mouth, again, like an animal with a trophy.
Even his outfit constructs his character. He was a very basic wrestling outfit, and a sleeveless vest that looks like he stitched it together with animal skins. When he makes occasional appearances on NXT in normal dress, he wears well tailored outfits, suits or vests with ties. He looks civilized and sexy in a primitive way. He's like a thug from a 1940s film noir who would slap around his mistress for giving him sass. And though I find abuse of women nauseating, there's something hot about this fantasy.
His attitude is never snotty; he simply doesn't give a fuck what anyone thinks or does. He never screams about being disrespected because, well, everyone respects him. He insists upon it.
Dunne doesn't need to say or do much to convey all of this: watch him in the ring, watch him walk down the entrance way, watch him look someone up and down. This kind of talent is extremely difficult to have. Having such a fully developed character such as Pete Dunne has, and at such a young age, is impressive.
And, of course, he's amazing in the ring. He's young and has more talent and charisma than wrestlers who have been doing this ten years longer than him (and he's been doing this since he was 12). In ten years, he could be running the wrestling world.
I first experienced him, truly experienced him in full character mode, during the WWE UK Classic. The WWE classics are all great wrestling, but the UK Classic is tight, well structured, and the wrestlers are fun as fuck. And of course you get Pete Dunne. Below is the final match in the classic between Dunne and Tyler Bate, who in his own right is dazzling.
The best match of the WWE UK Classic: Pete Dunne vs Tyler Bate
Sometimes, the entrances are the best part.
One of the greatest pleasures I have watching wrestling are the entrances. In Wrestlemania, the entrances are bigger, grander, full of pyrotechnics and costumes that are beyond the scope of every day episodes of RAW or Smackdown. In New Japan Pro Wrestling, the G1 Climax or Wrestlekingdom are the great events which inspire the best, most gorgeous outfits and regal entrances. As for Lucha Underground, it seems as if every day is a day for pagentry, as the lucha style of wrestling is full of color and high drama. And all of it is delicious.
Below is a brief collection of my favorite wrestlers and their gorgeous pageantry. There are many more I could have added, such as Sasha Banks, Bailey, The New Day, Shinsuke Nakamura, Bobby Roode, and Becky Lynch. The list does go on and on. These few are the ones I especially love.
Finn Balor, WWE
I mention Balor first not because of his 0% body fat physique, but because of the body paint. I've worked with body paint in theater productions, and it is extremely time consuming and always on the verge of being rubbed or sweated off. What Balor and his artist achieve is continually stunning. Yes, most of the paint gets rubbed off on wrestlers, but it works with the character. Balor enters as the demon, a force that he taps into like a superpower. At the end of the match, the demon has been exorcised, almost washed clean away, and once again he's Finn Balor.
Listen to me recite the first 18 lines of the Prologue to the Canterbury Tales in the Original Middle English
The Prologue to the Canterbury Tales
Geoffrey Chaucer (1340(?)–1400)
WHAN that Aprille with his shoures soote 1
The droghte 2 of Marche hath perced to the roote,
And bathed every veyne in swich 3 licour,
Of which vertu engendred is the flour;
Whan Zephirus eek with his swete breeth 5
Inspired hath in every holt 4 and heeth
The tendre croppes, 5 and the yonge sonne
Hath in the Ram his halfe cours y-ronne, 6
And smale fowles maken melodye,
That slepen al the night with open ye, 10
(So priketh hem nature in hir corages: 7
Than longen folk to goon on pilgrimages,
And palmers for to seken straunge strondes, 8
To ferne halwes, 9 couthe 10 in sondry londes;
And specially, from every shires ende 15
Of Engelond, to Caunterbury they wende,
The holy blisful martir for to seke,
That hem hath holpen, whan that they were seke. 11
Why do I know this?
The Canterbury Tales are a collection of stories told by a group of people making a pilgrimage to Canterbury, England. Each night, one person in the group tells a story. Some of the stories are very, very dirty. These opening lines, however, are not.
When I was in high school, my English teacher had us memorize the first eighteen lines. She didn't bother to wait until we asked why we needed to memorize and recite Middle English: she told us.
She said, "It will make you fascinating at cocktail parties."
Look at all the potential sexy characters for my action figure erotica. At the top of my list: Stephen Hawking, of course.
I listen to this song daily as I work. The music is by Zach Hemsey, who is extraordinary in his own right. Usually when I listen to a song from YouTube, I don't watch the video, but this one is an exception.
The video is cobbled together from scenes from the second or third 300 movie (it doesn't really matter which). It has the comic book aesthetic that makes the movie seem more like animation than live action. There's no voiced dialogue, but I get the main idea of what the movie is about and who Artemisia is. And she is an absurdity.
I'm Lady Ristretto, writing under a pseudonym. My pseudonym has a pseudonym.