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The Raven
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05-11-2019 05:45 pdt

Due to the sensitive nature of this entry, Admin speaks directly:

'I have been toying with the idea of publishing the manner in which this series has grown out of the past, and as of this writing I understand that some back story related to the last four years of writing may benefit some readers. Honestly, this subject matter does not sit well with me. The difficulty inherent in sharing such a personal, emotionally damaging, and detrimental part of my life nearly broke me. Here it is, and as a part of the journey already underway.

Once out there, if readers have any issue with the story, I will immediately pull the content from year zero of this small site. Feedback is not welcomed. One fucking comment and the result will be very unpleasant.'

There you have it. We go where steered, so publishing has taken place. Any flap will be met with quite the harsh backlash. We do apologize, however we do not own the space.


hexagram




Pressure

Part Five


"'You look so at ease.'
'I am.'

We are fifty miles passed below the wheels, and I can barely keep my head. Julia moves about the cab as if she lives there at speed. She doesn't even hold onto anything, similar to a fisherman after a lifetime spent aboard boats and rolling with the motion. She looks completely at ease while I feel quite the opposite. The pressure. The motion. The uncertainty. Julia looks at me from time to time with that relaxed expression and her eyes drive me nuts. Pressure. Just like in the city.

As the miles roll by, I begin to wonder what will happen to her at the close of this journey. Will she disappear? Will she remain with me but only in my mind? My dreams? She is a dream. Her attention and loving manner makes me feel as if nothing is a worry. All of my things will eventually be in line behind us and available for hiding away someplace safe. When her fingers glance my cheek, the world is ok. Everything is fine, in order, warm, comfortable. Julia said she is a part of me but I honestly do not know what not from where. She appeared out of nowhere and matched to me as quickly as Andrea. How is that even possible? I keep staring as she moves back toward the front, leaning backward and looking back at me as if I know what to do. Nope. I know what I wish to do, and that is to ravage her on the seat. Heh.

'Slow a bit, my dear. We are close.'
'Ok.'

What the fuck else can I say? Julia seems to know everything. Anything. I am at her beautiful mercy. I back off the big lever and peer through forward. No more staring at her legs for the moment. Twenty-five feels like we are crawling. Searching. The massive headlamp shows everything and nothing at the same time. Julia slides next to me with one arm wrapped to mine. Slower. A bungalow on the right means a switch soon. I thought we were further away.

'Stop.'

Now she is looking ahead with a very intense expression. What the fuck is there? I see no cars, no structures other than the little electrical hut, just rails and snow blowing. Signals? Wait. There should be at least one glowing signal before any switch, right? Do I ask her? Nope. Go with it. I trust her. Fingers on the inside of my shirt and upper arm. More pressure. Julia is driving me nuts but she must know. No more motion. Idle. I hear the cabin heat blowing and wonder why we are sitting there with nothing appearing in the windshield.

'I know, sweetheart. I really do.'
'Um... What?'
'Give it time.'



532



Now I believe we are waiting for something. She pulls me to the little side window as I hear the crack of a switch. Where? We passed it while I was gazing at Julia’s body. Nice. Way to pay attention, idiot. The train of my life and something with heavy bearing on my worrisome future, and there I am distracted completely by a woman. Big fucking surprise. Considering all of the occasions finding me running either toward or away from something due to that intimate comfort and satisfaction above all things, the idea of losing track of such an important situation is not so far fetched. I've done it for years. Julia holds tight in the warmth and maintains her gaze in the side mirror. Her stare stays locked as I peruse the facial features I have not enjoyed since the Raven. A sudden urge to slather her nose with my tongue. A glance toward her breasts and then down to her slender thighs. I am going out of my mind with desire but Julia is as a statue. Not a movement, not a peep. Nothing but soft breathing and the occasional, slow blink of those gorgeous lashes. Pressure again, this time against her. Without unlocking her stare, she tells me 'soon'. Oy. What does that mean? Being so close is making me crazy. I need her and she knows.

Rumbling. Light in motion.

Within seconds another train approaches from the rear on a line directly next to us that I could not see. More light, more sound. The deck vibrates beyond our own heavy idle. And more. Louder. And then it happens. An enormous bank of locomotives rolls by us at high speed and pulls my attention completely from the beauty and my issues. Ten engines. A storm of frightening sound like hell itself is about to descend upon our position on the track. Julia grabs tightly, smiles with wonder, and plants her lips to mine as if the world is ending. Andrea again. And the Raven with Her big, scared eyes looking at me like I can save Her. Car after car flies by and shakes our train as Julia’s passion unloads all over me. To the seat as she rips at my clothing. I am pushed to the big chair and Julia tosses her lovely top and pants wherever. Everything off and she climbs atop. More cars that feel only inches from the side mirror. Thunderous sound coming from everywhere. Julia takes me away from it all as her needs match mine. Animals. Insanity. Noise like nothing on earth. Bouncing, screaming out. Minutes pass as the other train seems to increase speed. Even more cars, now blurred from extreme speed the likes of which I have never seen. More time, more panting, until eventually I hear the squeal of the caboose roll by. Julia flops against me in a sweat, smiling, kissing, loving.

Unreal. Pressure gone. Quiet again.

'I did not see any switches.'
'You were staring at me, my love.'

I sat there, flabbergasted by the passion but feeling the beginnings of that nagging ache. As Julia moves herself to reach the throttle, she looks to me and expresses concern. I stare at the deck and say nothing. Motion. Rolling up on the throttle, she pushes us back to a preset speed and dons her clothes again. More concerned eyes upon me. Does she know? If the woman is a part of me, would that mean she knows everything?

'What is it?'
'Pain.'
'Tell me.' Ugh.
'You do not already know?'
'No, please share. I need to know.'
'Okay.'

Deep breath. And then I let it out as Julia holds my hands. A story I have told very few individuals.



533



'Nearly thirty-nine years ago, I was in a new middle school around others I did not know and in a location I had seen only when visiting relatives. We moved after I completed sixth grade. A thousand miles from everything I had ever known. School was difficult. Always. My personality kept me closed off for the most part. I was private, introverted, shy. The beginning of the scholastic year meant meeting a few students here and there, and being just shy of a teenager meant an interest in girls. Nothing crazy, but curiosity nonetheless. That goes along with the age. I met one boy who seemed to match me pretty well and we spent much time together walking to and from school and playing around. My older sister was at the high school and began to walk there with a neighbor. That girl was cute and her younger sister -- DeAnn -- was my age. I found her immediately adorable but my shyness disallowed anything aside from a greeting here and there. As the first weeks moved along, I saw DeAnn from time to time with her sister and found myself wishing to be closer. They lived just a block away, so weekends also meant spending time near them.

By the end of the first semester I had fallen into a routine of riding bikes with the neighbors and keeping mostly to myself in school. DeAnn liked me which meant walking home together on occasion. Others noticed our fondness while in school. Cut to the start of the second semester.

Two new teachers. One was math class. She called roll the first morning and asked if anyone went by a nickname as each person answered. My name was called, I raised my hand from the back of the room, and she innocently asked of two possible nicknames. Laughter with every pair of eyes turning to me. I mentally shrunk into my wooden seat and told her of the name to which I had answered my entire life. She moved on. I was not comfortable with the ridiculous laughter, however the teacher was merely asking. Her years showed me that the common nickname meant nothing to her. Older generation, vastly different standards. In the current time, though, the connotation was not good, and soon my life would be changed for the worse because of that simple question.

I had received a ten-speed bike for Christmas which meant goodbye to my little BMX cruiser and I rode the new one daily. Along the two-plus mile pathway was an irrigation canal and several drainage ditches. The path went atop one long levee with several little drops allowing access to the street below. Some were rideable while others were too steep. Nothing dramatic, but a few feet down. I rode that path as it was a straight line to and from school. Sometimes alone, other times with a friend, and once in a blue moon with DeAnn. She was in none of my classes which meant the nickname incident was unknown to her. I did not share.

One afternoon along that path I was stopped by a group of hoodlums (for lack of a better term) and I knew only one of them. I had seen the group at school, individually in some classes, and the apparent ringleader had been one of those laughing in math on that first day. Two of the others held my bike still while he informed me that I needed to stay away from DeAnn. Hmm. He liked her and felt that I was in the way. I do not remember the exact word exchange, however being the intelligent boy that I was, I managed to pull free, glide down one of the hills and ride for my life. I was scared to death of being hurt and would have had no chance against four other boys. Being smart meant I knew how to use the gearing to my advantage for maximum acceleration and quickly fled at high speed through a winding trailer park. They had zero chance of catching up despite their pedaling like crazy. I was gone in seconds and did not look back but once. They faded instantly and I hauled ass home. Gone. No one knew where I lived which meant I felt safe. Unfortunately, the following days at school would feel less than ideal. I feared for myself at every step. Hiding, sneaking, and trying to avoid any of them took its toll on me badly. I had never been so frightened of being caught and likely hurt.

Weeks passed without incident. And then the day that would ruin me for all time.



534



I rode to school like always, and that meant arriving in class mere seconds before the bell thanks to my geeky digital watch in perfect sync with the school’s timekeeping. After school let out I dashed to the rack, unlocked my bike, and took off in a hurry just like every other day. As I passed the end of the parking lot, I heard DeAnn call to me. Stop. She was not far behind and wished for me to walk her home. I could not resist the chance to see her cute face, so I agreed and we left together, me walking the bike.

I heard hushed voices as we reached the halfway point of the levee. Sure enough, there were the same four boys I had been trying to avoid for many weeks. Several steps had me calculating whether or not I should run for my life or stick with my walking partner. DeAnn must have sensed something wrong and took my hand in hers. That simple gesture did not sit well with her other admirer, so once again my bicycle was rendered immobile by the other three. Stuck. At that point DeAnn continued to walk without word one to me.

What follows are the most difficult words I have ever written.

He remarked snidely about my apparent ‘little date with DeAnn’ and further told me that due to me being called by the nickname, I was subject to being beaten. ‘D---’s are beaten’. I immediately tried to wrestle my bicycle free but they quickly overpowered my small frame. Upon seeing that I was trying to get away, coupled with the fact that they knew once free to pedal I could not be caught, the ringleader became infuriated. He grabbed the handlebars of the bike -- over which I was straddling the crossbar -- and proceeded to ram it up and down effectively bouncing the crossbar off my crotch over and over until I pushed myself sideways with everything that I had. The pain took me by surprise and was terrible enough to force me into lashing in any direction in order to cease the attack. My blinding push knocked two of them to the ground. Had I not been halfway to vomiting and completely incapacitated by what had taken place, the space was there to get away. Once hitting the soil I felt several kicks to my stomach, two more to my crotch, and one to my lower back. After I screamed out, vomited twice all over myself and urinated in my pants, the four boys took off. I do not know how long I laid there on the ground and in a puddle of my own fluids before being able to stand and find clear vision. Waves of nausea continued a long while and I found myself disoriented and in more pain than I had ever felt. My brain told me that the impacts were still happening as I tried to raise my bike. More nausea. After standing a few moments I realized something was very wrong. I would not know exactly why for some hours, but there was certainly something out of place. I limped slowly, leaned on my beloved escape vehicle for necessary support, and my stomach let go several more times before subsiding. Walking along that levee toward home was one of the most difficult things I could have imagined. My bliss over seeing DeAnn and my feeling of floating in heaven for being able to walk her home was destroyed that afternoon, and to this very second is the worst situation in which I have ever been thrown. Upon reaching home I relayed what had taken place to my parents. My father removed my pants, exclaimed that I needed to go to the hospital, and shortly thereafter my first of three surgeries took place in an attempt to both relieve the trauma and allow me to continue living as pain-free as possible. Three weeks passed before I was able to walk well enough to attend school. None of the boys involved looked toward me again. I suspect that they did not know the extent of the damage they had caused and were likely frightened by my little body coming apart the way it did.



535



That fateful day by the canal was the last time I would ever be able to conceive a child, and only if I had been developed enough by that early age to do so. Three months later I dashed out of that school for the last time. My parents had difficulty with their places of work, so we moved back to my hometown during summer. I never saw that levee again but am reminded of it daily.

Years went by with me in and out of receiving care due to complications as I grew into adulthood. I also learned that any sexual feelings caused a physical pressure within the place those boys so badly damaged. The pressure leads to pain, like an ache from being hit there, eventually leading me to struggle whenever in a situation in which I become physically aroused. After? The same. Sometimes a very short period while other times it lasts for days on end. There is no complete correction possible as I learned during the second surgery years after the first. And then more years went by and I experienced an ache which would not leave. I learned that due to the damage inflicted upon one side, severing the last link on both sides may help. One more surgery in my forties brought me as much relief as possible. From one day to the next I do not know if issues will arise again in the future, however the relationship between sex and pain has taken its toll after all this time. I always expect it, along with that pressure which has the ability to bring me to my knees. I am saddened almost constantly.

The correlation between my pain and that simple nickname which began the most horrible period of my life has jaded me so severely that just to hear it causes a mental retreat. Society dictates standards. I have no recourse other than to avoid others. The word is pervasive. A dysphemism. Bad. I cannot stand to hear it casually thrown around after a lifetime of suffering due to it being uttered innocently by a person unaware of the negative connotation. Innocently. The older generation treated the nickname as a name, nothing more. And the etymology is fuzzy at best. More than once I have contemplated suicide to be free of the piling difficulties.'

Julia is sitting there with wide, teary eyes, and appearing speechless. She takes my hand for a moment and then suddenly grabs me tightly as if I am about to fall into a chasm. I have been in that space for nearly four decades. She holds me a long while as our train rolls along unaware of the horrible tale I just poured to her. Righting myself afterward is very difficult.

'I'm so sorry. I hope I didn't make things worse.'
'Thank you my dear. I'm ok.'

Back to Julia’s arms around me and eyes to the windshield. The sadness over relaying my story out loud begins to give way to concern over the hoppers. She knows where we are going, if her sensing that long train rushing by is any indication. I still do not know. Pressure again, this time of a different type. What happens if I falter? The painful story of my childhood has placed a knot in my stomach, just as it has in the past. Pressure. Strain. Pain. Sadness. An opportunity taken from me in a violent manner. Julia holds me. Motion. Snow.

Just sadness."



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