The conference wave was over. It was the same wave that took me to the beautiful coastal city almost 3 months ago, one that I was gladly to ride on since it also meant a break from the job at this office, the dense air in this city and every corners that reminded me of how things used to be. Therefore, it coming right after the Taiwan trip sustained the height I was in for a little while longer. On the other hand, the drop was also steeper.
The delegation was overall happy but there were some moments where I did feel my job could have been done better. Work aside, in contrary to the previous trip, there was no sex this time. I had a hand job and a bj in the restroom, on 2 separate occasions, but none was finished. The first one even rushed out of the room before I did, leaving a major blow to my confidence. I knew why he behaved like that (I took a leak right before that so there was some piss left, not all of them are into water sports aren’t they?). The second one ceased out of fear of getting caught. But it didn’t matter though. The faces I saw did much more.
The first face I recognized and looked forward to in the crowd was the lady (let’s call her the conference girl) who months ago proposed the idea of an arranged marriage. She was fond of me at first, then I told her about my sexuality, and we were in good terms. The wedding idea was then put to rest since I tried to avoid it, plus her on-off bf showed progress in dealing with the family.
During the previous trip, she slept with her designated driver, which I protested. This time, neither of us did anything. But her pressure was still there, with yet another delayed date, this time for infinity, of the big day, of the post she couldn’t take (which reminded me of the cruelty of this business). Sometimes I had to admit that she was a bit dramatic and selfish but upon seeing the scar on her arms, where she used to cut herself, I felt like giving her the protection as a friend, and as a male.
The second face was a bit unexpected. It was her, the wedding girl. She was there to report the whole event, which was also her new job, dealing with the media. I’m sure, with her charm and intelligent nature, she would be doing well in such environment. Maybe we could put things behind, or to be more exact, I could put things behind.
But I wasn’t. I was expecting to have some personal talks, at least, especially after all these times she was trying to get my attention on social media by posting old memories, to which I never responded. But the only times we got to talk, she asked me to help her with the work, with this and that contact to the person she wanted to interview, and to even help out a friend of her. It was the past all over again, she asking me for a favor regardless of my work, of how I felt and of how it would make me look. I decided long ago that I couldn’t be the one she ran to, as just a friend, whenever the husband caused troubles.
On the side note, maybe I shouldn’t call her the wedding girl anymore. She chose to throw in the fact that she was no longer married and had moved out in the middle of nowhere. That was the only personal moment we ever had, during which, I felt like I finally saw that one saved my soul 5 years ago, with that summer, after I first broke up with my boyfriend.
The third face was a bit strange. He was the diplomat guy at the embassy, not the pale embassy guy I used to mention, but another one. This time for sure, I knew he was gay. He had been there all along but I wasn’t aware, until I saw him on Grindr not long ago. He was around the age between a child and a well-matured man. He had a slightly bit of double chin, but still looked adorable in that suit. He didn’t act flamboyant at all, like lots of (supposedly) gays among the attendees, but there was a modest touch of “gayness” in his manner I spotted out while he was talking to my colleague. All I wanted was a moment, for our eyes to meet, then it would usually go my way.
But it didn’t. That moment didn’t come, despite frequent occasions during which our way crossed. Then I realized it wasn’t that our eyes didn’t meet. It was him trying to avoid my eyes. Maybe he knew as well, and I wasn’t his type, which was another critical hit to the self-confidence. Anyway, I managed to keep it just as a small crush. But I would be seeing him for the next one for sure, until the end of this year.
The drop was steep. I spent the next day after the business ended, just to lie in bed, unnoticed, like those days I was feeling sick. I just ate, and sleep, and ate again. I jerked off, three times even.
Damian texted me, saying he needed a hug, needed attention and ideally a romance, but he couldn’t think of someone specifically. I didn’t tell him that I was feeling exactly the same. Our off-seasons somehow synchronized. You can call it being not independent, being so desperate that your happiness has to rely on others but actually it’s quite true to me as well, not just him.
Before I knew what love was and embracing my identity fully, in times like these, childhood memories served as a strong backbone. The other day, I had a dream where my whole family was being chased down by a psycho and killed off one by one while I had the phone and couldn’t even dial the police. Days before that, I had sex with one of the Taiwanese advisers, who actually hosted one of the meeting, in my sleep. What troubled me even more was that was a woman.
The conference girl asked me when the last time I had a date was. I told her since September.
“But you have a lot of one-night stands in between,” she said, somehow referring to her sex life as a dry desert. I told her I wouldn’t regard them as “one-night” since there was no night spent. When she asked about my most recent night spent, I couldn’t even think of the Taiwanese ones but skipped right back to Joe. Somehow, that moment, when we had sex that night with the moon casting light on the beach right outside our window, and I came inside him, or in anybody, for the first time, was still playing in my mind like an old movie.
I just finished Never Let Me Go, the novel, during my day off on purpose without notice. I remember watching the film a long time ago, when I was still with Beurre. He had always proven to be the more mature one, asking questions that didn’t come across my mind at that time. I remember his text saying what if he was like Ruth.
Still, at the turn of the final page, I couldn’t hold back the tears. I didn’t know why I cry. Probably because I just didn’t for a long time. But there was this one particular moment, when the Kathy drove aimlessly and found a field rounded by barbwire, with rubbish getting stuck on it despite, or thanks to, the movement of the wind. She wondered if those were what she had lost, on the other side of the barrier, getting piled up somewhere and at the far end, saw the vision of Tommy walking towards her. I’m afraid that I would be in the position but see no one in particular.