We had survived the holiday season, She and I, getting through Christmas at Her loudmouth sister's, survived the early morning phone call from the Wicked Witch of The West sister, who spent our precious time gushing about her wonderful Christmas Eve, and excoriating Her about everything else, knowing full well that She would be on her best behavior (as the middle child, the appeaser, the gratifier, the go-between) and would be sure to not rock the boat...they were all daughters of the same parents after all, all ACOA, each assuming the specified role long ago proscribed by years of family misadventures.
We lay at opposite ends of the long couch, our legs intertwined, each of us occasionally shifting from one hip to the other, squirming to find a more comfortable position, each of us struggling to catch up on newspapers and magazines that had fallen by the wayside during the Christmas season, the unread events and editorials of the past ten days on the floor before us, each of us with a mug of coffee close at hand. We were smug in the knowledge that we had survived another holiday season, the onslaught of retail adventures and wholesale giftgiving put behind us. We had escaped again together.
Or so I thought.
We had been together for more than ten years at the time, and had long ago stopped talking about sex during sex, both of us feeling that there was some element of traffic directing in specific instructions, and so we had taken to discussing whatever happened in bed at some time the next day, or the day after, sort of like a post game show if we had been playing some sport. The comments often came out of nowhere, no preamble, out of the clear blue, and the listener often had to take a moment to shift gears, the wheels spinning before gaining traction.
"It's not enough for me," she said, and I struggled to understand what she meant, as my heart dropped in my chest. "It's nice, but it's not enough. I'm not lost in it, I'm not abandoning myself to the sex, I'm not disappearing into it. I'm watching as though I were a third person in the room, apart from the two of us, watching the mechanics of it from another place in the bedroom."
I was dumbstruck, unable to say a word, shamed and embarrassed by the knowledge that I was doing my job but not completing her. I had no response, knowing by the way she phrased her words that there was no chance or opportunity for me to find a solution and fix the problem. She was presenting everything as a fait accompli.
"There's passion and intimacy, but there's no lust. I miss the lust. I truly ache for it. I lust for the lust," she said, flashing me an smile that conveyed both sadness and desire at the same time, her eyes narrowing with determination and blatant horniness.
"I want to take a lover."