Adam and his wife were both naked and they knew no shame
Simon cleared his throat and rose from his desk behind me. Class was nearly over.
“I don’t mean to be hard on you Miss Peterson, but are you saying that if the woman hadn’t been so greedy…”
The beta males began rocking in their chairs. I began my ritual rhythmic breathing.
“We would all be stark naked right now and proud?”.
In through my nose. Out through my mouth. Simon’s tribe of missing links began to laugh.
“Em, not exactly proud Simon, just not ashamed.”
The bell rang, chairs scraped. Miss Peterson’s chest flushed pink; she smoothed her skirt over her hips.
In through my nose. Out fast through my mouth.
Simon grabbed my shoulders, his grey blue hands cold through my shirt. He shouted over the class.
“No shame here Lily, did you hear the teacher? Get your kit off.”
The class erupted, I shook myself free.
Miss Peterson caught my eye and my breathing lost its timing. Blood pumped into my cheeks, my pulse thumped in my ears. His mocking voice too familiar. How much more?
“Simon, Simon, leave her alone …”
No one was listening to her. I coughed, threw my books into my bag and moved towards the door.
“Are you alright Lily?”
Her pale hand touched my arm, a diamond sparkling on her finger.
I nodded quickly, turned my heated face away and eased from her touch.
I left the room and walked alone down the east wing toward the next humiliation. From an equipment store a clammy hand slapped over my mouth. It pulled me inside, throwing me hard against shelves, a heavy door clicking shut. A halogen bulb lit Simon’s face, his pupils widening and his breathing laboured.
“Nothing to be ashamed of.”
He shed his blazer and adjusted his tie. He stank of stale sweat and libidinous lavatory habits. I braced myself against the wide shelves, searching for something to protect myself.
“You shall not surely die.”
He quoted the serpent’s seduction we’d read with Miss Peterson with slow relish. He always wanted us to know he was smart as well as strong. I grabbed at the equipment, a box of cricket balls clattered across the floor. He laughed, took a step towards me, fumbling at the buckle of his belt.
“Now I don’t want you to be greedy”
My fingers closed around a long rubber covered handle. He took another step.
“This will shut you …”
The cartilage in his throat crunched as the wooden bat chopped between his jaw and his honours tie. I dropped the bat, he dropped flat to the floor. Squirming on his belly, he grabbed for my ankle as I went for the door. I turned, stood over him and fixed my foot firmly on the back of his head,
In, I drew air through my nostrils. Out, I groaned; my voice freed,
In, he gasped dust into his lungs, tongue splaying on the floor. Out, his throat gave up its blood, spraying red onto the dirt.
[drawing is a rough sketch of a girl’s tattoo I saw one night]