Childhood’s End: a First Kink Experience

The sun still hangs low in the warm summer sky, just providing enough light through the trees for me to see how nervous he is. My heart is thumping in my ears. We are going to get caught, the words like a buzzing cloud in my head, panicked bees crashing in to each other as they filled up my 11-year-old skull, someone will see, someone will know we did this.

“Do it,” he says so low I almost can’t hear him.

I take a deep breath, step forward and as hard as I can, I kick him square in the junk.

I can feel the adrenaline popping in front of my eyes as he sags forward, awkwardly tripping over his giant 12-year-old feet and landing on all fours, then picking up one hand to clutch his abdomen. He groans and breathes hard and for a moment I am sure I have killed him, that I have just done the worst thing I have ever done in my life, and I am in so much trouble I will never again see the light of day.

While I lost myself in my visions of being kicked out of camp and grounded for eternity, he has already gotten to his feet and the sound of his feeble “again,” snaps me to attention.

“Do it again,” he repeats between coughs.

“Are you su..”

“Again,” louder this time, no longer a breathy whisper, “I mean… please do it again.”

The “please” yanks me out of my shock like a hook, and I wind up and kick him in the balls again. This time he doesn’t drop, but again slumps forward in a hunch with his hands on his knees, groans and breathes hard and then stands up.

“Please do it again.” He said please.

In my mind this barely 15 minute episode is a sprawling hour of our panicked adolescent eyes darting around the woods, balling up my fists as if summoning some kind of power to release, kicking him again and again, swinging wildly between the panic that someone will hear him chased by the icy thrill of how little I suddenly care. The rush is pushing outward in to parts of my brain I hadn’t ever accessed before. By the end I am not sure I am even kicking him hard enough to do much, but he says please every time, please again please please please again.

He finally collapses butt first in to the dirt, sitting with his head down between his knees heaving and then flops on to his back. I cannot tell you to this day what possessed me to do what I did next. I had never seen anyone do it, never saw it on tv, never thought of it before that moment. I walked over and stood over his sweaty, prone frame. I then looked right in to his eyes and spit in to his face. My saliva splats somewhere near his cheek, and as it rolls down the side of his face he closes his eyes and lets out a heavy, soul-unburdening exhale.

He stayed laying on his back, eyes closed, and I found a spot on the ground in the crotch of a tree to sit and wait, watching his chest rise and fall with his slowing breath. After a while he rolled over to stand up, and I jumped to my feet, dropping a handful of the tiny sticks I had been breaking in to tiny folded triangles to pass the time. He brushed off what he could reach of the crunched up pieces of leaves, and asked me if I was ok. I shook my head yes wordlessly, both hands tightly clutching the edges of my oversized tiger t-shirt as I watched his hands flutter trying to reach for mine. I had never held a boy’s hand yet. If we did, could people tell what we had done?

He dropped his hands and smiled as best a lanky, dorky pre-teen could muster before we both turned and headed back to our bunks.

We didn’t speak to each other for the rest of the summer, but I would catch him staring at me in the dining hall, across the bonfire, out a car window when his parents came to pick him up. I am sure both of us thought that whatever this was that made us do what we did, it was something people could tell by looking at you, that they could tell what you were.

I didn’t know what it was, just that someone might catch me at it. Maybe, a small voice inside me said, if they did, they could tell me what it is and I could find more.