The First Story of Love

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Gay and Lesbian  |  House: Booksie Classic
John who is in relationship with Bea tells her a story that hints his own identity. What is his true identity? And what is the story? How does Bea react to the truth?

Submitted: October 01, 2015

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Submitted: October 01, 2015

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One crisp Saturday afternoon, two college students date in the Corner Cafe where is the most ideal place for couples and dates. The location of Corner Cafe, as its name, is secret, without windows on the streets. The pedestrians can barely see them. And the price and the quality of the food in Corner Cafe is affordable and high. The cafe has five different menus for each day except Sunday, which is the day off. Most people will come by on Tuesdays or Wednesdays because they can have free coffees and cupcakes that day. People jostle into the cafe without effort because the door is unusually high and wide----designed for the giant owner of the cafe who is 7 feet high and 200 kg. He does not come to the cafe very often partly because of people’s impolite stares. Nobody knows his name. Even the workers. The chairs and tables are comfy enough to sit for three or four hours; the background music is classicals, very soft but melodious; from the ceiling hang the pendant lamps of star-shape, lighting up this lonely “lantern”. People call this place “lantern” due to its deficiency of light. Great place for making up, some couples might think.

Bea listened to John attentively, resting her chin on her right hand. The smell of strong coffee flutters into her nose with charm of hypnosis. John has a soft voice and a tough face. He tells the story with tears. Bea empathizes with him. She constantly rubs her eyes with a handkerchief, careful not to touch the eye makeup.

“Her name was Jenny Muller. She used to work here when she was still a college student. I guess that would be 8 or 7 years ago. Anyway, it’s been a long time, long enough to be a history. Muller was smart, a very smart girl. She observed people all the time, like a wary cat. However, people like her because she tells them what they wanted to hear. And this---” He sipped the coffee, “you know it through observation. And on the same day, Saturday, the same time, the afternoon, right here, where we sit, sat a girl named Jenny Sten. And she was another college girl.”

“What happened to Jenny Sten?” Bea asked.

“Nothing bad had happened to her. I mean Sten. She was quiet and a bit weird. People usually come here in pairs, not an exception at that time. Nevertheless, Sten, Jenny Sten, always came alone. And she left when the coffee was cold. She didn’t seem to like the coffee at all! All she did was sit at the table and ponder and then leave. Muller was first confused and then a little bit annoyed. People praise her coffee all the time: they say she makes the best coffee.”

“Then I wonder why Sten never drinks it.”

“I don’t know. Jenny Muller doesn’t know, either. She tried to figure out why. One day when Sten comes, Muller decides to talk to her.”

“Good move.”

“Muller found out Sten couldn’t taste. She lost her sense of taste when she was five. But she loves coffee. The loss of taste gives her an extraordinary sense of smell. She loves the smell of coffee gushing and filling her nose, her brain and then her heart. Muller is surprised.”

“Wow. That’s amazing.”

“What part?”

“When Muller found out the reason. I mean, Sten! She is so sad. How can a person live

without sense of taste? Everything will be so boring. Everything will be nasty. Nothing wonderful.” Bea told him with a sad expression.

“Yeah. That sucks.” John nods his head, “After that conversation, they met again, in human history class. Sten sits beside Muller. The funny thing is they both answer when professor calls “Jenny”. Muller says, “Gosh, why is Jenny so common?”. Sten shrugs her shoulder and says, “You can be Jenny if you want. I would rather prefer people call me “Sten”. It suits me better.” “Then I will be Muller.” This whole conversation is stupid. Anyway, they became friends afterward. From then on, they are alway together: doing homework together, eating lunch together, sitting in class together, listening to music together, using the same cup. They are alway together. One is another’s shadow. They are like a two-head snake.”

“What is two-head snake like?” Bea asked.

“A snake with two heads.” John quickly said.

Bea imagined a snake with two heads in her head. They might share the same neck, the same body, the same tail; but they don’t share heads, eyes, noses, tongues, hearts, mouths, ears. As the image of two-head snake became more vivid, Bea replaced them with two girls’ faces. Although she never meets Jenny Muller and Jenny Sten before, she still is able to picture them: one is blonde, the other is black. Bea likes the contrast of two objects. The picture must be funny, Bea chuckled.

“What are they like, John?” Bea wondered.

“One is blonde, the other is black.” John said directly. Bea wowed, and clapped her hands. “I thought so! Which one is blonde?”

“Jenny Muller.”

“Is she beautiful?”

“No. She is not. Jenny Sten is prettier. She has the most stunning eyes.” John told her, “but Jenny Muller is more outgoing.”

Bea smiled. “Is Jenny Sten more beautiful than me?” Bea asked with expectancy. John hesitates. He can’t tell Bea the truth for he loves her sparkling green eyes and brown hair and cherry lips. But Jenny Sten’s eyes are brighter and deeper, like a black crystal shining at the bottom of the ocean. Nevertheless, he doesn’t want to upset her too much. What’s the point of comparing one with another? They are all beautiful anyway. So he decides to lie.

“No. She’s not.” John lies without flush, “I think your hair is prettier.” As a result, Bea gives him a heavy kiss almost suffocating him.

“Oh, John, you are so nice. I love you.” Bea said afterward.

“Thank you.” John flushed, breathing hard, “I love you too.” Bea beams at him and then checks her watch.  She gasped.

“I gotta go. My piano lesson is at 7. I only have 10 minutes. Here--” She leaned forward and kisses him, “It’s very nice to talk to you. Have a good night! See you.” Then she got up and grabbed her coat and handbag.

“Don’t forget the next time we meet!” He yelled.

“Never!” She shouted back and disappeared into the darkness.

2

John stooped walked on the misty street. He often bumps into someone by accident. It feels like no one on the street because of the fat and obscure mist. However, you can sometime hear footsteps and whispers; sometimes you extend you hand and touch the concrete walls, or somebody’s shoulders, or some girls’ boobs. You never know. He sticks his hands both in his pockets and strolls over to the Corner Cafe. As usual he orders a cup of chocolate mocca. Then he finds an empty seat in the crook. But he doesn’t notice the seat first, he notices the picture above the seat on the ancient brick wall. Afar, it seems to be a picture of two girls holding hands together and smiling at each other. He get closer to examine it: it is exactly what he thinks. A black girl and a white girl. Tilting his head, he suddenly feels happy and relieved like a warm spring running through his frozen heart. Right, smile like that, always, look how simple it is.

John brings a book with him. It will before a long while when Bea gets here----she has a busy schedule. But never mind. He can exploit this opportunity to finish this book for his English class. The book’s cover has a big title “The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter” by Carson McCuller. He briefly leafs through the pages. Several words catch his attention. “distress, loneliness, misunderstanding.” It must be depressing. John chooses to read this book later because it seems long and tedious and depressing. “Why would professor choose this kind of book to read in class?” He wonders, “there are plenty of other good happy books.” People usually get the impression of English class that it is supposed to sit still and read some real serious sad books about humanity and----John searches for the right word----money. Maybe. Maybe not. He is not so sure. Guess that’s what he learns from literature. Ambiguity. He remembers what Mr. Darcy (his english teacher) once says that everything has everything else. He doesn’t fully understand what Mr. Darcy tried to teach him---it’s too ambiguous. In the other hand, Mr. Darcy does not understand what that goddam piece of shit means either. But he says it, he says it anyway.

The clock goes on. The tick-tock of a clock reminds Bea where she is now and where she needs to go next. It is true that her schedule is overwhelmed by her avarice. She doesn’t care. She never misses a thing or messes up. There are too many things Bea wants. Especially when you have a list you just want to take them all, Bea thinks. She wants to be business woman, wearing suits and high heels, drumming on the floor fast but steady. Of course she will have a secretary who will coordinates her agenda. She will be even busier, too. Lots and plenty of people would want to meet her; they would worship her as a god. Not a goddess. She is a feminist. And a feminist hates every word implying sex discrimination. I will be so powerful. Bea holds her hand on her chest and laughs maniacally.

She must not tell anyone about this. The clock goes on. Tick-tock of a clock reminds Bea of her date with John. She changes her messy sports clothes quickly and carries her handbag and then hurries down the hallway.

“Sorry, I am late.” Bea pulls out the chair and installs her butt on it. “No rush.” John smiles. Bea glances at him with surprise, then says, “You are not mad at me?”

“No at all.”

Bea exhales. “That’s weird.”

“Do you expect me to be mad just because you are late for an hour? Oh, come on. I am very patient and difficult to be annoyed. You better try harder next time.” John sips his coffee.

“Impressive.”

“Do you want any coffee?”

“No, thanks. I can barely taste anything today.” Bea complains.

“What happened?”

“I don’t know.”

“That’s weird.”

“Maybe a cup of strong coffee might wake my taste nerves up.”

“What would you like?”

“American Coffee. The most bitter one.”

“Gotcha.”

He came back with a cup of coffee. The vapor soars up high and floats over Bea’s head. They both can smell the fragrant of the coffee.

“It smells so good that I now will be content without actually drinking it.” Bea closes her smoky eyes and raises her face and smiles. John places the coffee on the table and then sits down. Bea sips her coffee.

“How do you feel?” John inquires.

“Um….better.”

“Good.”

“Did you remember the story I told you last time?”

“Yes. Um, ooh this is hot.” Bea fans her hand hard, looking at John then adds, “and bitter too.”

“No. I am not. Do you want me to finish it?”

“Go ahead.”

“Where are we?”

“beauty, which one is..”

“Beauty? Beauty... “

“I said things about snakes.”

“Ah. I remember now. Okay. So they are together like two-head snake. They are always together. People have rumors about them. They think they are in love.”

“Like gay love?” Bea hesitates.

“Lesbian.” John continues, “At first, Muller and Sten don’t give a shit about those gossip. But all of Muller’s friends try to persuade her to leave Sten. They personally believe it is Sten who forces Muller to be friend with her. However it is. Sten leaves Muller in the end due to the pressure.”

“That is the end?”

“After five years later, I mean after their graduation, they have not been contacted. It is queer to me how Sten finds out Muller’s home address and sends the invitation of her wedding. Five years. Muller goes to that wedding and finds out it is a lie.”

“That’s so mean!”

“No.No. No. Sten plans her wedding not with another man or woman, but with Muller. Sten proposes to Muller that day.”

Bea frowned.

“Did she accept it?”

“No. But she asks for an apology from Sten.”

“So-”

“Sten didn’t apologize to her.But she explained why she left Muller. It is not because she doesn’t love her anymore. It is because she loves her too much and she couldn’t stand just love her as a woman. She wants to be a man. She had sex operation.”

“Wow! But why: why can’t she love as a woman?”

“She wants sex.”

“But there isn’t only one form of sex!” Bea looks excited.

“Hold on. I know. But everyone is different. Maybe having sex like man and woman makes her feel more natural and better.”

“You are kidding me!” Her face turns red.

Suddenly, John chuckles. “Are you still a virgin?”

“Of course not!” She is furious.

“Then why are you--”

“Shut up, will you.”

“Okay, okay.” But still, he covers up his mouth and chortles. Feeling humiliated, She threatens him that if he continues to be a jerk, she will leave him, forever. She thinks he might stop because she knows he has strong affection for her and they haven’t had any sex yet----man wants sex. He wouldn’t---

“Okay.”

What?

“Don’t be so surprised. You know, hahaha, you know, come over here.” He leans forward, “Tell you a secret. I was a woman. Hahaha. And I like Sex.” Leaving her gasped, John gets up and pushes the door and disappears into the darkness.

 


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