By Emillio Mesa
“Your punishment is that you have to spend the night with me”.
At the stroke of midnight, after three hours of bar hopping and grabbing the obligatory slice of pizza, in downtown NYC, my friends decided to ditch me. Some hooked up, while others had to get up early for work. I, on the other hand, was off the following day and still had my cocktail buzz and wanted to continue, and so I did-alone. I landed at a roof top bar in west Chelsea where I was surrounded by men without a shirt, in leather, or in a suit. I wore khaki shorts and a white t-shirt. As I made my way to the crowded bar, I couldn’t help but to recognize a local weatherman in a harness and an on-air journalist cruising for muscles. Waiting for my drink, I felt a tap on my shoulder.
“Are you runner?” said the man with the salt and pepper-ish hair, with the brightest-grayest eyes I’ve ever seen.
“I was in high school. Why?” I responded.
“Well, you are lucky. Your body has great memory and good genes from what I see” he said.
“Thanks, I guess” I responded.
“Why do you guess? It is” he said.
“Wait, where are you from? From which Spanish speaking country?” I asked.
“I am from ARR-Gen-TI-NaHhh” he said.
I told him I spoke Spanish too because I was born and partially raised in The Dominican Republic. His eyes widened while flashing his pearly-whites, from ear to ear.
“Papiiii, I love Dominicanos!” he said.
He proceeded to tell his favorite things, from foods to “platanos”, not the kind that grows on trees but in between men’s legs. I rolled my eyes and told him to relax. He told me he was nervous and asked me to forgive him if he offended me. His apology was genuine, so I accepted and thanked him for it-besides he wasn’t the first and it wouldn’t be the last time. We had a couple of light beers on a bench, while discussing life in NYC. He’s a stylist with a steady stable of Upper East Side ladies-who lunch. Before we knew it, it was almost 2 am. I had brunch plans in the morning and had to get going. We were both heading in the same direction, so we decided to share a cab. When we got to his destination he asked me to come up for a night cap. Not being a stranger to these types of situations, I knew what was coming next and I actually wanted it too. His intense gaze, mischievous smile, and the accent-paired with how he looked in his jeans, made it quite difficult for me to say no. Before entering the apartment, he asked not to make too much noise.
“OH My God. Here we go with the bullshit, NYC, roommate situation” I said to him.
“No. I’m hosting a seventeen years old model from Slovenia, in town shopping for an agency. I just don’t want to startle her” he said.
After taking the first sip of the vodka tonic, he leaned in and kissed me. We both put the drinks down and started to make out.
“Do you like poppers” he asked me.
“I usually don’t because they give me a headache, but what the hell?!” I said.
We both sniffed the poppers and felt the rush of warm sensations with dizziness-take over us. Immediately after- lights off, all clothes on the ground, and our sweating bodies fell on the bed. We laid head to toe and started to 69 each other. From the other side, I heard a familiar “rattling” sound. He was shaking the bottle of poppers, before sniffing. After screwing the cap back on the bottle, he flipped my leg so fast that before my foot landed on the bed, I heard him scream.
“AYyyyyy” he said. I got up to face him and saw blood splattered all over his white-goose feather comforter and my feet-as he shook his head back and forth and up and down.
“What happened” I said as the beads of sweat ran down my face.
“Your knee hit my face” he said.
With my heart pounding a mile a minute, I jumped out of the bed and escorted him to the bathroom. I turned on the cold water and opened up the medicine cabinet, looking for a first aid kit. I cleaned him up and took him back to the room, all the while trying to make as little noise as possible, so we wouldn’t scare the model across the hall.
“AYyyy, papi, you almost killed me. But I grew up on a farm, I’ll be o.k.” he said as he laughed.
In an attempt to clean up the scene of the crash, I took the comforter off the bed and replaced it with clean, dark blue sheets, then turned on the air conditioning. I put on my underwear and shorts, while he lay on the bed.
“NO! You are leaving me now?” he asked while getting up.
“I guess so. I thought maybe you’d want to be alone. Besides, it’s after 3 am and I have plans in the morning” I responded. I didn’t know what else to say, I was so embarrassed. I think he picked up on it too.
“Your punishment is that you have to spend the night with me” he said jokingly, while sitting naked on the corner of his bed-with smiling eyes and a slight frown. I couldn’t resist the wounded puppy look on his face, so I decided to stay. He took a Xanax for the black eye that started to settle in-and gave me one to calm my still throbbing heart. I placed his head on my chest and we fell asleep. Hours later we woke up and had safe sex, with no head on collisions. This time we were both paying attention and not completely lost in the “rush” of the moment. Soon after we climaxed, I noticed he started to bleed-again. I took him to a nearby emergency room, where he got two butterfly stitches above his right eyebrow.
“The nurse asked me how it happened” he said to me.
“What did you say?” I asked.
“That I reached for a bag of vegetables and a platano hit me in the face. I don’t think she believed me but she smiled. Will I see you again?” he said as he controlled his own laughter.
“Give me your number and I’ll check up on you later” I said while hailing a cab and laughing.
I kissed him on the forehead then put him in the car. The Argentinian and I became friends with benefits. He says he is proud of his “fashionable scar”.
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