“And then sometimes, rarely, in the middle of the night, he’d be sweet. Pulling me into his lap, kissing me, caressing me. Letting me fly but anchoring me with his eyes. Speaking words he’d never dare say in the light of day.”
“That was the funny thing about smiles--if you flashed the right one, no one knew there was more going on inside.”
“His weakness was me. He wanted me and he hated that maybe as much as I hated him.”
“I don’t know, Reeve. Because you do a lot of talking, and all I hear are mixed messages.”
“I’m unmixing them now. Listen. This is the one I want you to hear.”
“Why can’t we worry about each other?”
“The only thing shittier than the way men treated a pretty woman was the way women did.”
“It was a kiss that took—took my desire, took my passion, took my will.”
“Even in my thoughts, he watched me.”
“A flood of inadequacy poured over me, a feeling of I-don’t-belong, but if not here, then where? The room began to close in around me, blanketing me with acute heaviness.”
“I can’t figure you out, Emily.” His words were tight yet even. “I don’t know if I like you or if I just want to fuck you.”
“I understood exactly what it was to want to change. To try to change. To find it impossible.”
“I’m an awful host,” he said eventually. “I should tell you to make yourself at home, but all I care about is making myself at home inside you.”
“He had so much control over me, so much power to have me this close to destruction so quickly. I was exposed. Raw and vulnerable. Caught off guard by how easily he annihilated me each and every time. It scared me.”
“Now the door was open. Now one of us just had to walk through it.”
“I’m trying. I’m going to keep trying with you.”
“He’s a rich, powerful man. Rich, powerful men get away with things all the time. It’s the law of capitalism. It’s especially an issue when those rich, powerful men have ties to men who are richer and more powerful.”
“No,” I told him. “You tell me what I want. That’s what I want.”
“I was here because this was who I was—a strong, independent woman with distinct wants and needs that were only met when I submitted to a man.”
“A glance at his crotch gave me the slightest smidgeon of satisfaction. He was unmistakably hard. He might be punishing me, but he was punishing himself too.”
“He was always rough. Always raw. He fucked me however he wanted.”
“all I hear are mixed messages.” “I’m unmixing them now. Listen. This is the one I want you to hear.”
“There were at least a couple thousand people in front of me—all of them trying to show that they weren’t ugly too. A flood of inadequacy poured over me, a feeling of I-don’t-belong, but if not here, then where?”
“I want you to fuck me!” The words tumbled out. “Hard.”
“Besides, I don’t think that’s something you’d want to hear from your lover.” “Lover?”
“On the bed?” “No. Against the window. From behind. I want you to strip me and press me hard to the glass. So it will feel like anyone can see. And anyone who does will know that I’m special because I’m the one you’re fucking.”
“They were here for the attention and material gain. They were shells waiting to be filled with a man’s desires, blank screens projecting someone else’s wants.”
“And what exactly was it he was saying? That he wanted to take me into his bed? That he wanted to scare me and possibly hurt me and I was supposed to be okay with that?”
“Having them finally touched, finally fondled and caressed, was more erotic than I’d imagined. More pleasurable than I wanted it to be. I decided I would die if he ever stopped. God, how I needed him to stop.”
“What do you want? How do you want it? I never felt like I had a good answer. For the first time, I realized why. Because what I wanted was to not be asked the question.”
“They loved believing they’d affected a woman so much that she was reduced to communicating through gasps and groans.”
“لا يهم اختلاف المكان الذي انطلقنا منه . . .إنما المهم حقا،هو الهدف الذي نسعى إليه”
“With old and young great sorrow is followed by a sleepless night, and with the old great joy is as disturbing; but you, I suppose, finds happiness more natural and its rest is not disturbed by it.”
“The mighty sturgeon has his pool; The stork upon the dam makes his habitation. Fish in scaly armour, Birds in serried plumes, find protection. In my distress I question that inscrutable expanse: O bowels of earth! O boundless sky! Will ye not hearken to my cry? Above, the twinkling Milky Way; The air cold, Slanting moonlight, The water-clock sunk past midnight. My restless heart grieves still;”
“Aren't there going to be any refreshments?" Tharamn interrupted. "I always think better with a little snack to keep me going."
"I'm with you there," said Grishmak. "Bring on the nibbles!"
"There aren't any!" Cressida snapped. "This is all far too important, and besides, once you lot start easting, it'll only turn into a party."
"Can't say I have a problem with that myself," said Tharaman. "What about you, Grishy?"
"None at all. Bit of food and fun helps the boring bits along, in my opinion. Let's call a chamberlain and order some grub."
"No!" Cressida insisted. "We all need to concentrate, and I for one find it difficult to think one you and Tharaman start cracking bones and spitting out gristle."
"I never spit out gristle!" said Tharaman in miffed tones. "A terrible wast of protein. It just needs a little extra chewing, that's all."
Thirrin had watched the exchange in silence, but now she sat forward in her chair. "Actually I wouldn't mind a sandwich myself."
Cressida looked at her thunderously.”
“Had I crossed the pass
Supported by a stick,
I would have spared myself
The fall from the horse.”
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