Screw It Up
Lee Ann Powell
In South Korea, food is one of the highest forms of adjustments for Americans. You make it past the fetid fish smells, the fiery-sour kimchi, the relentless supply of rice and noodles. Fine, I expected this, you think. But then, when you've settled in, thinking you're nearly Asian, imagine the unbelievable disappointment: you see the most luscious of donuts, filled with what appears to be gooey pudding or a wispy froth of an icing ... only when you bite into it, your jaws are slowed as your teeth encounter the sludge of sickly yellow bean paste, the waxy non-taste of gelatinous gruel hiding in the seemingly innocent donut, the very donut you raced towards and shoved in your mouth with visions of Saturday mornings at home. No, you're denied this pleasure of reminiscence and are reminded once again that you're nowhere near home. The taste buds still cry out, but alas, there is not one Krispy Kreme on the continent.
Like the appearance of sweet confection, Michael and Erin began their journey full of hope and the promise of exotic horizons. What they discovered was a life that was decidedly more the mundane drudgery of bean curd rather than the frothy sugar filling they expected.
What did they know? Nothing. At least when they struck out to parts unknown. They had been the Peace Corp wannabes without the wish to starve. Hell, they were fresh out of grad school with student loans waiting to suck up their entire future with monthly payment slips to remind them of the silly English degrees they sought. Only answering ads that offered free airfare and housing, they found jobs together abroad.
Of course they didn't wind up in the most colorful destination. Taejon, South Korea wasn't what they expected. They got a bustling town of government and industry - long on concrete high rises and short on traditional color. Their life was soon taken over by squawking children who were only somewhat interested in learning English but highly interested in bouncing off the walls at any given moment. For enjoyment, they had a small ex-pat bar to go to on the weekends, satellite TV reruns of "Vegas" and "90210," and each other.
Teaching at the same school and living in the same apartment created a new world that revolved around each other, no matter what their designs might have been. In the hallways of the school, across the dinner table, waiting outside the bathroom door. It was togetherness in its most pure form. Erin used the situation and the new surroundings as an excuse to hover closer. However, she could sense that Michael was beginning to chafe from the proximity.
On one afternoon with few diversions, Erin came to Michael's room -- they at least had created this pretense of separateness-- to lure him into recreation of the most basic form. He didn't even look up from his computer as she entered. She sat on the bed and began telling him a totally fabricated story: her latest sex dream which involved making out with a Korean woman.
He looked up.
He didn't need to know that she made it up.
"Let me show you how she kissed." They never talked like this to each other. Erin was taking a risk, but who knew which risks were going to work out? He responded with more enthusiasm than she'd seen in a long time.
He began to add twists to the fantasy, putting himself in the voyeur position. This story inspired him to work himself more fully into the afternoon's events. He said, "Why don't you roll over?"
Erin tensed. "Roll over? I don't think that my girlfriend would ask me to do that." Not sure she was ready to venture into these uncharted waters.
"Well, she might want to show you that she's strong enough to give you what you need. Let me give you a little demonstration. Is there any Vaseline around?" he asked.
Hmm, this could be interesting or painful. "What do you have in mind?" she queried. He continued nuzzling her neck and sliding his hands up and down the inner curve of her thigh. "Let's just see what happens." He left and came back naked, lube in hand, obviously aroused. "Take off your clothes."
He was improvising, which she always appreciated, so she complied. After a generous slathering of slick goo all over her backside, he began to mount her.
"Oh, be careful!" Erin bleated. This seemed entirely too intrusive. She clenched up as he was trying to ease himself in. She squirmed and he continued to wedge himself a little deeper. This area might be a one-way street. "Hey, OK, oh, stop!"
Erin's initial excitement was replaced with muscle clenching fear and pain. She turned over quickly and tried to divert his attention face-to-face. She didn't want to lose the moment or discourage his adventurous side so opted to turn the tables.
She lay him down and coaxed back his interest. As she was doing this, she fondled her way back behind his testicles. He wriggled as if he wanted her to continue. Touching him and exploring inside, she ventured to where he just tried to enter her. Her finger felt inadequate for her; she wondered if he felt the same. She saw the Phillips screwdriver Michael had used to mount curtains on the wall earlier and thought, hmm, that's got a nice rounded, smooth tip.
She left him wanting just for a second, grabbed the screwdriver, put the tip of the plastic handle in the Vaseline jar. His eyes were still closed as she worked the screwdriver up into him. He moaned. She put the pressure back with her mouth, working with both hands. She was losing her grip on the thin metal of the end. He was saying her name, caught up in the moment. Erin loved this new control. She was fucking him like a man and it was a power surge. She rubbed against his thigh straddling him to give herself pleasure and pounding into him. All possible lights were lit- electrical charges coursing through their bodies. The simultaneous orgasm which had nearly eluded them thus far was finally happening. Her arms reached around his back to get leverage, to prolong the waves of excitement.
They looked at each other in shock, their eyes wide with the realization that this was so good, the best. They smiled and laughed with the pure high of physical pleasure.
Suddenly, he looked puzzled. "What was that you used? Why is it still there?"
"OK, hang on. I used the screwdriver. Did you like it?"
"Yeah, but not now! Get it out!" His voice was taking on a frantic edge.
Erin tried to get a hold of it, but it was still slick with the Vaseline. "Shit, I think it's stuck."
"What!" His face quickly changed from discomfort to complete terror.
"It's too slippery. This metal end is hard to hang on to."
"Wipe it down," he demanded. Erin grabbed the sheet, whatever, it was available; this was a sex crisis.
She bunched up the sheet and pulled.
"Ouch!" It was still wedged deep inside. Now humiliated and pissed, he tried to grab for it himself and suffered the same difficulties. "I'm going into the bathroom. You're not needed. What the fuck were you thinking?"
He yelled this as he backed away from her on the bed. She knew that if she saw his backside, she'd see a metal tail wagging its way along, sticking out from under the large mole where his cheeks meet. She started to giggle. Thankfully, the reverberation of the slamming bathroom door drowned out the sound of her laughter.
She didn't want to be anywhere near that door. She decided to go out and get some beer. He would need it after this experience. Then she was feeling guilty, which killed the afterglow of the electric orgasm. She bought all of his favorites: 6 big OB Lagers, shrimp snacks.
On the way home, Erin wondered if she'd done enough. Should she call out for pizza? Were flowers appropriate for a sore butt? She worried that they might never try anything new again. She worried what the price would be for her innovative, if not well thought-out, improvisation with home improvement tools.
When she got back, the apartment was dark. He was gone. Did he have to go to the emergency room? She was suddenly really worried about him. It didn't seem quite as funny. However, picturing him explaining his predicament to a Korean doctor did seem pretty amusing. How would he get there? He would have to take the bus. He couldn't sit down properly, could he? Could he get pants on over his new tail?
Erin peered into the bathroom - no screwdriver. She looked everywhere for it and found it in the bottom drawer of the kitchen cabinets, washed clean of any evidence. Well, she might as well have a beer and sit this one out. He might not make it home for awhile, nursing his wounds, so to speak.
She ended up watching TV, making some mac and cheese tuna surprise for dinner and reading in her room. She got restless and went into the living room to channel surf the three English options: "The Rockford Files" on Star satellite TV was her best bet. She stayed awake waiting for the return of her injured lover.
He came home, and she looked up, turned down the TV and smiled at him, "How are you feeling?"
"Let's not dredge that up."
"Dredge? It was only a few hours ago. Are you OK? Would you like a beer? I bought you some, I went out, but you weren't here when I got back. I was worried about you. I never wanted to hurt you," Erin was in placating mode, to which he caustically responded, "Jesus, let it go. Yeah, give me a beer."
"Where did you go?"
"I just went over to Colin's and then we went to Koong Dong for some beers."
Hmm. No opening. She really wanted to mend fences and make him feel better. She brought him the beer and sat down next to him. She started rubbing his back and kissed his cheek. "That was the best sex ever. You can make me feel like my whole body's on fire."
Nonplused, he shrugged her off. "Whatever."
Erin didn't know where to go with that, but she did feel like she had to make it up to him. "Baby, I'm sorry. I want to make you feel better, not worse."
"How's ripping me a new asshole going to brighten my day?"
"What're you so pissed about? You came like there was no tomorrow. Besides, it's a manly tool. It's not like you got an Epilady stuck up your butt."
That was more than Michael could take. He stomped off to his own room and slammed the door. Erin wanted to follow but was trying not to. She knocked lightly on the door. "Michael?" No response. "Hey, honey, I'm really sorry. I love you."
She knew that was all he could muster. She left it at that.
She spent the next two hours in front of the TV, not watching but analyzing the ramifications of this. Would that taint their relationship? Maybe. No, surely not. Would it be a wedge or could it be a step towards more experimentation? Probably not with household tools. Would he ever try anything new again? Did he see her as a sexual predator? Should she offer to massage the injured area? No, that would be too weird. He was anal enough already - would this make him more so?
She wondered if he told Colin about this incident. She couldn't imagine that "Man, my ass really hurts" would be a common utterance among straight men.
Erin knew that the only way to fix this rift was to offer up what was left undiscovered the night before. Her ass might have to be the sacrificial lamb that saved the relationship. She hoped not.
What looked like a donut turned out to be bean curd incident after all. Would they ever have another creme filled moment in the midst of Korea?
© Katie Crowder and Lee Ann Powell
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