There was an entire group still in the dungeon lining up to play when Shannon left. She didn’t feel like sitting through another night chatting and not participating. She was officially someone who chatted, and never played. She hated that.
There was no one Shannon was interested in playing with. She was approached, but she was looking for a connection. She’d seen couples with amazing power exchanges. They were palpable. She wanted a relationship with an invisible boundary that radiated, that people could feel.
She left early and headed to her car. The black asphalt had a tiny glow from an overhead light a few buildings down. Disappointment made Shannon’s stomach heavy. Her innocent footfalls disgusted her. She missed noodle legs.
She heard her name called out. She looked over the parking lot and saw one of the members of the group sprinting towards her. She couldn’t remember his name. She knew he did a lot of rope. Shannon never really got on the rope bandwagon.
He was her age. Shannon always thought he had a misplaced surfer look. Maybe it was his shaggy blonde hair. He always wore jeans and a t-shirt. Not bad looking, either.
“I can’t remember your name,” Shannon said.
“Justin. But I’m guessing …since you didn’t know my name, you probably won’t play with me and my rope.”
“Here?” I asked.
“Sure, why not?” he seemed to be confused about any alternate locations available.
“Probably, but let me think about it. I’ll let you know next week.”
“Cool,” he said. Nodding his head, smiling.
He stood there for a little too long before Shannon gave a half wave, opened the door, and slid into her car. She cranked up and left with hopes of playing and falling in love with the feel of rope. At least she wouldn’t be chattering.
Shannon pulled into her parking spot, grabbed her purse and stuck her phone in her back pocket. She locked her car, and headed for the porch. Her footsteps creaking against the same spaces in the wooden porch were a natural and welcoming sound. He skipped a step. His long legs forced the wood to make sounds under his weight which were odd and unfamiliar.
Shannon turned around to face Justin just as he’d cleared the last step. He no longer had such a lax demeanor. With a black bag over his shoulder and a nervous smile on his face, he attempted to hug Shannon. She stepped back and looked at him curiously. He shrugged it off, nervously.
“Justin, did you follow me here?” asked Shannon
Justin nodded his head and laughed jovially.
“Yeah! I’m stoked. I just want to show you how seriously great rope can be. And I’ve been watching you. I know you are really flexible. I took your coat off once. I saw your back. I made a model, well, kind of a model. I started playing around with what all we could do if…” Justin rambled.
Justin was getting to the gut of it all. His frenzy was growing. Shannon backed into the doorway of her house. Justin’s arm movements were like a car window’s warning: some objects may be closer than they appear.
“Why don’t you come inside, Justin?” Shannon asked, calmly.
Justin’s face lit up. He nodded his shaggy head. Shannon unlocked the door and let him walk past her. The lamps Shannon left on prior to leaving the house softly lit the room. She never liked coming home to a dark house. Justin bent to unzip his bag. He began pulling coils of rope out. He was jabbering, excited.
When he bent over, Shannon dropped her bag and let fly four cartridges that would fishhook neatly through Justin’s thin white t-shirt and into the flesh in his back. The electric charges would have him seizing until he drooled and pissed on her floor.
She let him have the full 20 seconds. The last ten were for following her home. Shannon tilted her head from left to right. She watched him, and smiled. She left him plugged into the gun, but set it aside and wiped her hands dramatically, sneaking a peek into his bag.
“Well, Justin. This changes things. You’re the rope expert, but I can do magic with duct tape.”
Shannon drug a chair over from the kitchen. She bent down at an odd angle to peer into Justin’s glazed-over eyes. She kissed her finger and pressed it to his lips.
“I’ll be right back. I’ve just got to get the plastic out of the shed.”