Riding on the Cusp of the Moon
I can not say that I've led an overall exciting life, but I can say it has been nothing less than interesting. Having been born on the slimmest cusp of the moon, I have learned that when you least expect it, things happen. Some pivotal point comes along and changes things for better or worse depending upon how the stars align at that precise moment. Never being one to tempt the Fates, I've learned from childhood on to tread lightly and choose wisely. It is now in looking back to a particular night in my life that I wonder as to whether I really had any choice at all.
Prior to relating my story to you perhaps it might be good for you to know a few things about me in general. I, Amber Lindsay Norton, was born to ordinary parents, on an ordinary day. Growing up female through the fifties was little more than a preplanned trip down the two-lane highway of middle class Americana. Namely, girls will become wives and mothers, while boys could be anything they wanted to be. It wasn't until the changing tides of the sixties and seventies with the Women's Liberation movement and the dawning of the Age of Aquarius that my life became a little less than predictable. Going to college had more options than studying Home Economics and finding a husband. I was liberated to make my own choices. The first of many being my course of education, career, and anything else my heart desired. The only problem was that I had no idea what I wanted to aspire to. That is, until one night in October when I tried to balance my life while riding on the cusp of the moon.
With one foot precariously place on the parapet of my dorm, I raised the antique spyglass to my eye. Carefully I worked the mechanism to gain the best possible vision. Ah, there it was. The images slowly came into focus, revealing a young woman's form draped with streams of sheer, green material about her headless body.
"Damn window shade," I muttered under my breath. Fine-tuning my eyepiece, I lingered wistfully over the expanse of skin that was briefly unveiled. Without warning, all movement stopped as tufts of blonde hair invaded the lower right area of my vision.
"God! Was that a nipple?" I gulped at the thought. My muscles froze and my eyes strained to answer the question. Little did I know that all reference to the subject would soon be removed from my sight, leaving my libido to flounder aimlessly. "What I wouldn't give to see that nipple again," I murmured before turning my focus to the heavens above. "Astronomy, Amber, that's what you're supposed to be studying up here." I let go a sigh and began my task, aiming my eyepiece skyward. No matter how hard I tried to make out the constellations, they all bore a remarkable resemblance to one spectacular, well-formed breast, complete with perky nipple. Tortured by an entire galaxy of puckering flesh, I lowered my glass and gave up.
"Maybe tomorrow night will be better." I tilted my head back to view the cusp of the moon with my naked eye. Slim, sleek, and silvery in perfection stood my life's guide amidst the black hole of my life.
Concentrating on the cusp again, the image of the nipple came to my mind and I became lost in the reverie of my dreams. Sigh. Perhaps someday my wish would come true. I don't know how long I had stood there with my spyglass still in my hand, but when I finally turned around to leave, the vision of a blonde with a scowl on her face stood waiting at the roof top door.
"There you are!" Blonde brows creased and her scowl turned even more dire as she flew out of the doorway, waving a bit of sheer, green material in her hand as she headed toward me. "If you think you can get the advantage for the first place costume award by spying on me from this rooftop..."
Me, a spy? I could feel my eyes grow bigger as my mind puzzled over the concept. Offering up the antique telescope as some sort of explanation, I stuttered out my rebuke. "I...I...I was j-just doing m-my assignment."
"Who's paying you?" She demanded, her small balled up fists showing all of her bravado as they rested menacingly on her hips.
"Paying me? No one's p-paying me. I'm a s-student. I'll be paying this university for the better part of my young life to be here for the years they demand of me."
"I wouldn't worry about it if I were you. I hear the CIA has quite a liberal benefits plan." Green eyes glared out from under blonde brows. She reached up with a delicate hand and brushed a wayward lock of hair from out of her face. "I've worked too long and way too hard on this costume to have someone steal my ideas. That first place prize money is just about in my hand so, if I were you," she leaned toward me in a somewhat menacing fashion, "I'd think twice about what you were up here doing." In an abrupt fashion, she turned and left.
My mouth agape, I stood there, lacking for anything to say. Could she have known of my mere glimpse of swollen bud? No! It was too brief an encounter. But oh! What an encounter it was.
"Costume?" I blinked, hearing my voice give sound to the question that floated on the breeze. What was she talking about? How could I find out? Post haste, I followed her through the rooftop's door, scampering down the stairs and out into the main hall of the third floor dorm. I searched the corridor but no blonde with sheer green material in hand could be found. Alas! The story of my young life, too little, too late. Shrouded in sorrow, I made my way back to my room.
* * * * *
I must have looked forlorn, sitting cross-legged with the side of my face pressed up against the pane of window glass when my roommate slipped into our room. Her usually chipper self became somber.
"What's up with you?" She edged closer to her bed than usual. "You sick or something?" She made a cross with two of her fingers as if to ward off any germs.
"Not sick," I croaked out, my eyes never blinking.
"Well, that's good." She sounded relieved as she plopped down on her bed.
"Judy, I think I'm in love."
"Oh, that's bad." Her voice sounded ominous. "Been there, done that. Not doing it again." Judy reached over and lifted a textbook off the pile next to the bed. "I thought of becoming a eunuch but decided instead to devote my life to science." The redheaded teen cracked open the book and delved into the meat of the text.
"It happened so fast. One second I was focusing my great, great, great grandfather's spyglass in preparation to study the heavens and the next thing I knew sheer, green material unveiled the most delicate nipple I've ever seen."
"That fast, huh?" Judy commented, not looking up from the tome in her hands. "Did you know the speed of light traveling in a vacuum is 299,792,458 meters per second?"
Upset by her trivial attitude toward my plight, I picked up a pillow and threw it at her.
"Hey!" Judy squawked, blocking my direct hit with an up thrust of her hand.
"That's what you get for spouting off with scientific facts all the time." I shot a wayward glance in her direction before settling my gaze back out the window. "That's the last time I confide in you," I muttered.
In an exasperated effort, Judy closed her textbook. "Okay, what can I do to help?" She sat up, dropping her legs over the edge of the bed. "Amber," Judy pleaded with her voice, "Look at me." She waited until my gaze met hers. "What's her name, this mystery woman of yours?"
"I don't know," I mumbled.
"Okay." Judy sounded relieved. "Where did you first see her?"
I felt a shit ass grin spread across my face. "Through my spyglass."
Judy stuck out her tongue. "That, my dear roommate, was a given."
"Sorry," I shrugged. "I couldn't help it."
"Seriously, Amber, how can I help you track down this mystery woman if you don't give me all the facts?"
"I guess she was across the quadrangle. I always stand on the front parapet wall and focus on one of the two dorms across the way before leveling my sight off on the water tower up in the hills."
"Well, that limits our search." Judy jumped up off the bed and headed for her desktop computer. "I'll just pull up the names of all the female occupants in each dorm."
"I don't think it will help. She didn't introduce herself."
"Right." Judy thought for a moment. "I don't suppose they'd have a listing of naked breasts by each woman's name."
"Hardly," I scoffed. I shifted my gaze to Judy and noticed a glimmer in her eye.
"What else can you tell me about her?"
I took in a breath and held it as I relived the moment of my brief encounter. "I-I remember her saying something about..."
Judy's head riveted in my direction and she interrupted my thought. "She talked to you? What did she say?"
"Oh, I forgot to tell you. She appeared out of nowhere on the roof top and scolded me for spying on her costume."
"Costumes, great! We have a lead. I'll just cross reference the names of all the women with their dedicated majors." Judy's fingers danced over the keys and soon a scrolling list of names rolled down the screen. "Shit!"
"What's wrong?" I jumped from my perch at the window and leered at the screen from over my roommate's shoulder.
"Both dorms are filled mostly with theater majors, fashion design students or political science majors."
"And knowing that is going to help me find her?" I watched as Judy nodded enthusiastically, her fingers again flying over the keys.
"Sure it will. Just watch." She leaned back and struck the enter key. "I've just asked Jeeves." A new screen popped up and Judy quickly read down the screen emphasizing what she felt was important. "Some costumes are worn for erotic purposes, or in the harmless form of fetishism."
"Great," I moaned. "With my luck this mystery woman will be a political science major with the quest of being the next Heidi Fleisch."
"You couldn't be so lucky," Judy quipped as she reached for the mouse.
"Hey, what are you doing?"
"I'm looking up what these words mean in reference to costumes. Eroticism, is an aesthetic focused on sexual desires, especially the feeling of anticipation of sexual activity."
I gulped and measured my internal feelings. Suddenly everything that Judy had read was hitting a little too close to home. My home to be exact. I turned as the screen started to change again, feigning any interest in what my roommate was reading.
"I always wondered what this meant. Fetishism," Judy spoke more clearly, "Is a natural object believed to have supernatural powers, or in particular an object created by people that has power over people." She mulled over that thought before continuing. "A fine example can be found here in 'An Adult Female Armpit Fetish Community'."
Curious, I stepped back to look over her shoulder as the web site popped up.
"Ew!" Judy pushed back from the desk, her hand scrambling with the mouse to eradicate the page from her sight.
"Gross!" I closed my eyes and vowed that if I were to do this task, it would have to be on my own.
* * * * *
Early the next morning I took up a position outside the two adjoining dorms.
How much easier could it be to find my love interest than to sit waiting outside
her residence? Let me tell you that my derriere did not take kindly to hours
seated on end. Flattened and sore, I left after a morning of eagerly watching
every Jane, Jill, and Johanna head-on out to their classes and assorted daily
activities. None of them resembled the woman of my dreams. Could I have missed
her? Was she an even earlier riser than I was? Carefully and methodically I filed
away all questions raised for future reference. With the sun just past it's zenith,
I finally gave up when my stomach protested far too loudly for me to stay on
my clandestine mission.
Over a meal as meager as my outlook, I set about narrowing the list of possible candidates. If I couldn't find the woman directly, perhaps with a little ingenuity, I could find a trail leading to her or possibly the reason for her costume.
I considered the idea of costumes in general. If she were making a costume she'd need material. Again my mind focused in on sheer green fabric, forcing my chewing action to slow to that of a brain-dulled hippo chewing its cud. How can such an intelligent being, a nerd of sorts, be reduced to an ill-mannered animal at the sight, even if only mentally, of a most perfect nipple?
The rough nudge of my chair by a passing student brought me back from my thoughts. Determined, I jotted down all that I knew about the mystery nipple...I mean woman. Sorry. It's just so hard to keep my mind on track. I decided that tomorrow I would search out all stores in the area that handled fabric, hoping to find some lead.
* * * * *
I felt out of place standing in line waiting to address the taunt looking, tight-lipped woman behind the counter. Her prim coiffure and spotless outfit put her in a class with my sixth grade French teacher. Suddenly I felt bad about wearing ragged jeans. Still, the quest to find my mystery woman egged me on. Slowly I crawled up the line until I stood before the epitome of June Cleaver.
The command startled me and I had to think about what it was I wanted to know.
"Next," she spoke more forcefully, her eyes boring into me.
"I-I..." I gulped stalling for time as a thousand things race through my mind.
"My friend," the light of animosity enlightened my path. "Yeah, my friend bought some sheer, green material the other day."
"And?" Her eyes softened. "She wants more?"
My spirit lifted in the hopes of recognition. "You know her? My friend."
"Sorry," she offered a weak smile. "I know the material of which you speak though. Everyone's buying it."
The breath blew out of me as though I was punched in the gut. How could I be so close and yet so far away? Crestfallen, my shoulders slumped and my gaze fell to the row of pattern packages placed just out of the way of a large work area in front of my tormentor. An idea struck me. "What?"
My head jerked up and my line of questioning changed. "Do you know what it's being used for? Why is everyone buying it?"
"What are you, some kind of reporter or something with all the questions?" She answered my inquiry with one of her own, then added another. "Are you new around here?"
"Why, yes I'm new." I jumped on the question, hoping it would lead me to more information. "I'm a freshman."
She held up a hand, halting my further explanation. "Say no more." The woman pointed to the flyer on the pole next to her and started to grumble. "You'd think the University would publicize their Halloween activities more."
I sidled over to the poster and read it uttering only the highlighted words. "Halloween...costume...cash prizes." I slammed the heel of my hand into my forehead. "What a dummy," I mumbled.
"Mummies. We can do that with muslin or gauze," the imitation of June Cleaver "You don't need green material for that."
"What would?" I turned abruptly and grabbed the woman by her shoulders, forcing her to look into my eyes. Desperation clutched my throat as if it were a hand from the grave. I pleaded my case. "Please, tell me. What kind of costume would that sheer, green material make?"
The shocked look on her face didn't hamper her words. "A lady in waiting, a harem girl, a dancer with seven veils," she named a few before taking a breath and continuing. "A ballerina..."
Augh! The thought of tights and tutus brought back bad memories of a first grade dance recital I'd rather forget. Thank the gods my dancing ability was limited and my sense of rhythm short lived. Shivers ran up and down my spine as I fought to leave the memories buried and long forgotten once again.
"Or a princess."
The last word she said stirred my emotions and the spark of an idea flitted through my mind. Fair skin, delicate features, along with an attitude of superiority led me to believe that princess would indeed be the choice of my fair maiden in her disguise. Energized, I flirted with disaster and dropped a kiss on sweet June's cheek.
"Thanks," I said and hastened my departure from the awkwardly stunned sales clerk.
"Crazy college kids." I heard June's voice call after me as I headed
out the door.
* * * * *
Being less than a visionary, I had no idea how to come up with a costume. All I knew was that I had to be something worthy enough to get into the competition only two short days away. Armed with little more than a hope and a prayer, I scrounged through the contents of my room. It wasn't long before I assembled my treasures: a few random pieces of clothing, one elbow protection pad for skateboarding, and an antique spyglass. They did little to stir my imagination. In haste I turned to the rest of my dorm. An hour later my impromptu scavenger hunt turned up everything from goalie kneepads to a slightly bent strainer from the dorm advisor's kitchen. Laden with more obscure treasures than I knew what to do with, I placed them into my room and sighed.
"What to do now." I muttered picking up my spyglass, then I set off to the roof to speculate my beleaguered costume choices. Out in the fresh air and under the night sky I always thought best precariously perched, lounging on the parapet wall. There I took up my position, using my trusty spyglass to focus my mind.
For the better part of the next two days I pondered my situation. Sleeping by day and stargazing by night left little time for my studies. I have to admit that even if I had tried to study it would not have been very beneficial. All that came to my mind was unrelated to any subject they taught at the university. I was a hopeless case and it was becoming very evident by my sullen mood and my brooding mumbling.
On the afternoon of my final day of consternation I woke from my mind-numbing haze to the sight of my roommate fusing with an old television complete with tubes. (Imagine that antique in this day and age of cable ready, high definition TV's!) My head was filled with a strange buzz that quickly turned into an ear-splitting noise.
"Damn it, Judy!"
"For somebody so caught up in science I can't believe you'd still fiddle with that thing." I pulled the pillow out from under my head and pressed it to my face. "Stop that noise or I'll kill myself."
"No you won't. Your will to survive won't let you," Judy stated rather matter of factly. "Besides, I never scoff at you and that old telescope of yours."
I came out from under the pillow fighting. "Lay off my spyglass or I'll rip those tin foiled antennas right out of your hands."
"Amber." Judy directed her startled gaze and the roll of aluminum foil in her hands directly at me. "You don't want to do that," she cautioned in her best bravado style.
As if it would stop me, I shuddered then laughed in the face of danger. "Judy, Judy, Judy." I drew out her name like some Carey Grant wannabe. "Make me," I rasped in a gravely voice and dove at her. With my hands on the aluminum foil I brought my roommate to her knees in the middle of her twin bed.
"Stop! Stop," Judy squawked, then started to laugh uproariously.
"What? What are you laughing at?" I pulled back to take her fully into my view. The laughter sounded even stranger to my ears now. There was nothing to laugh at. So why was she ridden with mirth? I grabbed Judy's chin and made her focus on me. Gritting my teeth, I forced the words through them. "What's so funny, Judy?"
"You and that pile of rubble," she chuckled out, casting her gaze to the mound of accumulated treasures in my corner of the room. "If that's a costume I guess your going as an intergalactic junk pile."
My gaze shifted to the assemblage. Judy was right. I had yet to come up with a costume and the hours were dwindling down.
"Augh!" I screamed in anguish and tossed the roll of tin foil onto the pile. In a haze I let my roommate up and sat back on her bed. "I'm never going to come up with a costume now. I may as well give up."
"Resilience," Judy sighed, then got up to retrieve her roll of aluminum foil. Starting over again, she ripped a small section of foil and placed it over the antenna. "You need a little resilience. Look at these old ears," she smiled tenderly at the less than straight antenna in her hand. "My grandmother used to tell me about all the shows her and grandpa used to watch on this set and all she had were these antennae to catch the signal. TV would never have transpired into what we have today if it wasn't for these old ears. That's why I like to keep it with me. Piece by piece the world changed."
"And where does that word 'resilience' come in?" I raised my eyebrow speculatively.
"Old is new again. You just have to see it for want it is." Judy's eyes seemed to sparkle. Done with the tin foil, Judy tossed it into my lap. "See for yourself what a little sugar coating will do."
Sugar coating? I thought about it for a moment before an idea came to me. Perhaps I could use the past to catapult me into the future. I surveyed the pile and started formulating my costume.
* * * * *
"Okay, how do I look?" Worry had to be shining through my eyes as I looked down on the spectacle I had made of myself. Somewhere under the three dimensional collage of sporting equipment, good luck charms of every conceivable kind, and useful bric-a-brac from nearly every room in the dorm stood a lovesick lesbian, full bloom with the first real crush of her adult life.
Judy easily turned me around with little more than the motion of her finger. When I came back to face her, she gave me her verdict. "You look like a cross between C3PO and the Tin Man. Are you sure you can move in that?" An anxious eye questioned my ability to even get out of the room, let alone make it to the costume party.
"Yes," I nodded with the limited movement the foiled kitchen strainer on my head allowed me. "I'm fine." I took a tiny step forward exhibiting my stiffness and gave a pint-sized wave at the wrist. "See?"
"Right," Judy snapped sarcastically. "You know, you're going to have to walk. I don't think those goalie pads are going to let you sit down for me to drive you anywhere."
"If it's going to get me anywhere near that nipple draped in sheer green material, I'll walk to the moon and back again."
"Yeah, like that would be possible."
Her dour face didn't turn my mood sour. I could tell Judy was skeptical that I could do any task let alone either in question. "Hey, I could moonwalk if I really wanted too." Unfortunately for me, I believed what I had said. As soon as I started my backward motion, all attempts at keeping my balance were lost. Before I knew it, I was falling.
"Whoa!" Judy scrambled to catch me but her outstretched fingers had little to grab onto. Aluminum foil may make everything old look shiny and new again but it did little in the way of giving one something to hold onto. I thank the gods or the Fates for the placement of our beds. Before I could offer up a single prayer for the safety of my mortal being, I felt the extreme softness of a down comforter and firm but pliable mattress springs beneath me.
"Oh shit!" The words rushed out of my mouth as I bounced upward into Judy's arms.
"You can say that again," Judy hung on to me for dear life.
There was little I could do to break our tenuous embrace. Like a statue I stood there wondering what to do next. It was the first time I'd been this close to the woman who shared my space. It was strange this level of intimacy we now shared. My skin tingled in a way that one could almost call electrifying. I wrote it off to the amount of tin foil I was covered in and the stray TV reception that was channeling through my body. Frightened and a little embarrassed, I looked up into Judy's eyes. I couldn't tell if it was terror or startled realization but I could tell that something scared her the same as it had me.
As if struck by lightning, we both jumped backwards and looked for something, anything other than what we'd sensed in the embrace to talk about.
"Imagine that!" Judy laughed nervously and pointed to her bed. "Just goes to prove you can't keep a good woman down."
"Well that ought to...huh?" I stopped, suddenly giving my roommate a sideward glance. Did she just call me a good woman? No! I heard her wrong. I attempted to shake the idea from my head.
Judy's gaze shifted nervously about the room until it settled on her watch. "Oh. Oh! Look at the time. You'd better get going if you're to make it to the Costume Party." She rummaged about the room, gathering up a bit of this and that before she headed back in my direction. "Here," she shoved some dollar bills and my college I.D. into the only place it could be concealed, a foiled oven mitt stapled onto a length of hose that hung around my neck. "Just in case they need proof that you're not a vagrant. I don't want to have to come bail you out later tonight."
I was speechless at Judy's thoughtfulness. There was a long moment of silence between us as my chest filled with pride. "Thanks," I choked out and headed for the door.
"Here's hoping you get to meet your mystery nipple," Judy called out after me a little more playfully than I had expected.
I didn't have the heart to answer her as a double round of both confusion and anticipation filled my being.
* * * * *
The room was crowded, packed way past its limit by the time I had arrived. If I was going to get any chance of finding my mystery lady I needed to get moving. One small step at a time I made my way around the perimeter of the room. The whole time my eyes focused not on the floor or the walls around me, but rather on the color green. Imprinted in my mind like the head on a coin, I knew if I found that same sheer green material, an exquisite nipple on a perky breast would lie just under it. For the next three hours I roamed around amidst wildly coiffured clowns, battle-scarred Native Americans, and an assortment of colorful ladies in waiting from all cultures of the world. Nowhere could I find any hint of sheer, green material except from the tip of their headdresses. Acting somewhat cavalier for the woman I am, I set out to strike up a conversation with one of the maids. If possible, perhaps she could enlighten me as to the whereabouts of my mystery woman.
I opened my mouth to speak when the sound of an antiquated loud speaker crackled out its announcement. "Judging for the best costumes have been completed."
Panic struck me like a ten pound stone tied around an albatross's neck. All hope of finding my goal rested on the next few minutes. I searched the crowd of would-be winners and noticed an anxious few gravitating toward the front of the room. Likewise, I too headed that way. Surely my mystery woman would be there. After all, hadn't she told me the prize money was practically in her hand?
Each labored step toward the front of the room drove my anticipation into high gear. I watched with eager eyes as those chosen as runners-up were pulled from the rabble of partygoers. We waited with bated breath as the emcee revved up the enthusiasm of the masses before announcing the ultimate winner.
"And the winner is..."
A hush fell over the room as the emcee turned to eye the costumes speculatively.
"The grand prize for the best use of everyday materials goes to the intergalactic cowboy," the emcee decreed. When no one readily stepped forward his outstretched arm pointed to my side of the room. "YOU! You're the winner."
As if by magic the crowd around me diminished and there I stood singled out.
"No!" Terror struck me as all eyes turned in my direction. "But I'm not...I-I'm just..."
"The winner fair and square," the emcee ended my sentence for me. "Step up and take your prize."
"Step up," I muttered. He might as well have asked me to conquer the world with a single swoop of my hand. I could barely raise my leg high enough to get up on a small elevation curb and he wanted me to climb up the stairs to the stage. There was no way it was going to happen.
"Here, let me help you." A small woman stepped up to my side. "I might as well get some recognition for all my hard work."
Frazzled by all the attention, I hadn't noticed the hint of sheer, green material showing out from under her bodice.
I made it as far as the bottom of the steps before I finally got the words out of my mouth. "I can't. I wasn't expecting to win." I reconsidered the thought. "Well, not this prize anyway."
"Oh, so are you saying you cheated?" The woman at my elbow whispered into my ear. "Are you finally feeling guilty for spying on me?"
"I never spied." I retorted before the circumstances fully warped around my brain. Then it hit me. I turned as fast as I could and eyed the young maid, looking for the telltale sign of sheer, green material. Sticking out from under her bodice the link to my mystery woman thumbed its nose at me like an ill-mannered child. "I-I," I stuttered as my brain assimilated all the facts.
"You won. Now come and collect your prize." The emcee waited on the stage.
"I can't." I pleaded and motioned to my limited movement, my foot raising only halfway up the step.
"Let me get it for you," the woman next to me said with a pseudo smile plastered across her face. She played to the emotions of the crowd, then leaned in closer to make her true feelings known. "You owe me, big time," she emphasized with a determined look in her eye.
My nerves struck a new level of alert. Something told me I'd pay and I was hoping beyond all doubts I knew what the price would be. It didn't take long for me to find out.
"Thank you for awarding my friend and I the grand prize. We've worked long and hard coming up with a unique and thought provoking costume."
She smiled sweetly at me and I could feel my knees start to buckle as the image of a perfect nipple once again entered my mind. Thank the gods for the goalie pads or I think I would have fallen right then and there to the floor.
"I'll..." She cleared her throat. "I mean, we'll put this money to good use." She took the check from the emcee's hand and eyed it appreciatively before grabbing the microphone. "Laura Cahill," she said proudly as she held up the check for all to see, "remember the name."
"Laura," I whispered under my breath as though I was in some post-hypnotic trance as Laura took a bow, then triumphantly threw kisses to the crowd. I struggled to regain my senses when she descended the stairs and stood in front of me.
"We?" I finally mustered enough of a voice to utter the question.
"You got a problem with that?" Laura challenged me.
"No. I-I just..."
"You just spied on me. Would you have rather I said that? Let everyone know what a peeping Tom-a-SEE-na," Laura emphasized the wrong syllable to her advantage, "You are?"
"Alright then." Laura took a closer look at the check. "Ah good! It's made out to cash so there won't be any problems." She stuffed the check down into her cleavage and smiled. "There, I've deposited it for safe keeping."
I swallowed hard wishing I were that check. "But you said we. What do I get?" My hopes were higher than a kite.
"What do you get?" Laura laughed sarcastically. "You get the privilege of having had your name associated with the next up and coming costume designer, Laura Cahill." She turned and started to walk away.
"Hey! You don't even know my name."
"Yes I do. It's Loser." With a wave of her hand Laura dismissed me and floated back into the mass of humanity that filled the room.
There I stood in the periphery of the limelight wondering whether to cry at the loss or thank my lucky stars for what had just happened. Needless to say, I left the party just as alone as when I had come.
* * * * *
It took me over an hour to traverse the four blocks from the party to my dorm. I had little need to hasten my pace since I had no one to go home to. In my mind I was truly a loser in every sense of the word.
Alone in my dorm room, I disrobed from my thin veil of the intergalactic cowboy and piled the assemblage into the corner to be returned to their rightful owners the next day. There was only one thing left for me to do. I grabbed my spyglass and retreated to the roof to wallow in self-pity.
Broken-hearted wasn't one of the things I'd set out to be in my life, but there I was lounging on the parapet and aching for a love I'd never know.
Longingly I turned my attention to the moon and hoped for a reprieve. I sat there for what seemed to be hours, looking through my trusty spyglass before a familiar voice beckoned me back to the earth.
"I was hoping I'd find you up here." Judy stood in the doorway, hesitant to invade my universe.
I steadied my nerves and gathered all of my strength. "Yeah, I'm here." I continued to look at the moon trying not to sound as depressed as I really was. "You back from your date already?"
"Yeah, I," Judy hesitated. "The date ended early."
"Not as hot as you thought, huh?" I tried to smile but it took more effort than I had.
"No, not hot at all. In fact, my date was pretty cold. I got to see their true colors." Judy tentatively stepped onto the roof and made her way toward me. "How about you?"
"I...won." I couldn't believe I said it. "Best costume," I smirked. "And to think it was nothing but a pile of junk."
"You gave it your best shot and took a chance." Judy rested her hand on my shoulder. "I knew you could do it."
At a loss for words, I looked up into Judy's eyes. In her gaze I saw confidence and so much more that it caused my heart to race. Confused, I searched for answers. How desperate for affection was I that I could read a roommate's praise and encouragement as something more? Why was I feeling more with Judy's touch than I did when my mystery woman had laid both her hands on me as she guided me toward my prize. Not only was my heart racing but so was my head. It was the same as earlier today when Judy caught me from falling flat on my face. Suddenly the light bulb turned on and I was left with a startling conclusion. Was this tingling, weird sensation I was feeling love? Unsure but none-the-less willing to make a fool of myself I did the only thing I could. I looked up into Judy's eyes and became more determined than ever to put an end to all the questions. I took in a breath, then lifted my face ever closer to hers. Seeing that Judy was not backing away, I did what any young lesbian would do. I kissed the girl.
Soft, yet firm lips met mine. I waited for any sign that my advance was not warranted. There was none. More confident, I pressed on, invoking all the powers of the moon above to guide me.
Slowly my lips parted and Judy's tongue slipped in to test the waters of my soul. I closed my eyes and melted into the kiss while I wrapped my arms around her waist. After all, now was not the time to fall off the parapet wall. I don't know how long we kissed, but when our lips finally parted and her fingers slowly withdrew from my hair, I wanted nothing more than to do it again and again.
"I guess my secret's out," Judy's gaze met mine.
"I'll say." I slowly surfaced from the sexual haze that fogged my mind. "I-I didn't think...I mean," fright struck my heart. "Say, you're not Bi, are you?"
Judy's lips turned up into a sly smile. "Would it matter?"
"Yes," I spoke before I could think, then rapidly changed my mind. "No." I scrubbed my face with my hands in indecision. "I don't know."
Her laughter stung my ears and my face showed my dismay.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean to laugh."
"Why did you?"
"No. Return my kiss."
"I just thought it was funny." She laughed again as I made a face. "I'm sorry," Judy reigned in her mirth and continued. "Here we are, roommates for the last two and a half months and we still don't know everything about the other one." Judy leaned down and placed a chaste kiss on my forehead.
"So I guess you want a new roommate now." My tone was less than enthusiastic.
Leery-eyed I took in the honesty written on her face. "You don't?"
"Nope! In fact, I'd like to get to know you better."
I felt my eyes open wider at her statement.
"A lot better."
The sincerity I saw in Judy's eyes blew me away.
"You might say in-ti-mate-ly."
With a wink of her eye she had captured my heart. The next thing I remember was Judy taking my hand in hers and helping me up from my perch on the parapet wall. Now, I'm not one to kiss and tell so I'll stop this part of the story right here.
In a way you might say that riding on the cusp of the moon has been the best thing for me. Oh, I hear you rumbling with questions. What ever happened to my mystery woman? How did things work out for Judy and me? What did I finally aspire to?
Let me answer them for you one question at a time.
First, let me clear something up about my mystery woman. That episode in my life turned out to be a case of mistaken identity. The naked nipple I'd seen underneath a veil of sheer, green material through my spyglass had not belonged to the up and coming costume designer, Laura Cahill. It was instead the nipple of her girlfriend at the time, one Judy Obberman. Now I know why that blonde knew exactly where to find me on the rooftop of my dorm that day. Laura Cahill, by the way did bring life to the world of stage and screen with her lovely costumes over the years. In fact, she won the Globe Award this past year. I take pride in saying that I gave Laura her first backing with the prize money she lifted from me that Halloween night.
Now as far as Judy and me, all I have to say is that from that first kiss forward we have been partners in life, love, and anything else that comes along. Our union has lasted almost thirty years and with the blessing of the Fates, it will stand true for lifetimes to come. How do I know this? Let's just say that I've consulted the higher powers.
Lastly, I know you're wondering as to what career path my life has taken. Whimsically some still call me a stargazer while in reality I'm nothing more than that questioning young adult with an old spyglass starring up at the moon. For the sake of my parents and the IRS I'll leave you with my more scholarly title of Astronomer.
Like the cusp of the moon, our lives and love are on an intersecting path. Being at the right place at the right time is all we have to do to bring it to a point. There is nothing supernatural about it. You only have to look, and I mean really look, into the night sky to understand.
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