The Last Emperors.
Chapter 11: Love you like a brother
By Jolie Adam
This chapter is dedicated to @jazzlady29 & @justabreez. These LT ladies had given up all things LT for Lent and showed true willpower even though they’re avid fans. Letter is courtesy of a poem by Dawn Coignet-Saulny called ‘Desire’.
Dawn unpacked the sundry items, toiletry and the few clothes and shoes she’d packed for her trip. Now that they’d be living in Tokyo for three months, a shopping trip was in order. But first, organizing. Larry was taking her out to a sushi bar that had a live DJ. He’d described it as a lounge with club music with a restaurant menu. All the while she’d been thinking how perfect her red and black butterfly dress would be for the outing. The encounters between them in the last week and a half, since they’d met, had been physical to say the least. She was conventional and he was a renegade. Not that Dawn was drawing up conclusions about their affairs. It was all over Japanese television and minor gossip channels, the thousands of die-hard Les Twins fans, the incessant adulation on blogs and dance websites. They were legends – and she’d be silly and blind to pretend the beautiful girls practically offering themselves on a constant basis hadn’t caught her eye. A part of her truly wanted to care, to resent and reject it, to sneer at it and mock his personal success yet her energy in that regard was diffident and impassive. Larry was good sex – great sex. Spontaneous, strong, sexually exhibited and dauntless, experienced, honest and at the very core, sweet and affectionate. During sex, he was every bit like a dog in heat but afterwards, he always tended to her privacy. The time in the park, he’d stood on lookout so she could get dressed and gather herself. Any other guy would’ve been too busy trying to come up with an excuse why he suddenly had to leave. There were little things, tiny even –blink-and-you’ll-miss-it – that he did here and there. Not deliberately but naturally. Opening the door, placing his hand behind her head so it wouldn’t hit the hard wood, wiping the lip stain on her chin and removing a leaf out of her hair. Dawn sighed as she took out her mask. Divergent interpretations of her lifestyle, her personality and her career were the foundation of this palpable chemistry. Just like embracing Luluxe every time she was on stage, she encompassed the Dawn Larry knew and swallowed the character whole. Match for match for his spontaneity and wild streak. The lies followed her all the way to the bedroom. Moaning like a seasoned pornstar, giving back every push with a pull. But when the mask and the hoodie and the makeup and the alter egos came off, it was just good ol’ Dawn who loved love and who knew no matter how far she went, how remote her location in the world was, love would find her.
In the crease between her thongs and cute boy shorts, she hid a recent letter from him. It wasn’t the most recent, dated over a year ago. The lettering aged from folding and unfolding and the paper had thinned from all the handling and hiding. She wanted it distant enough to forget but close enough to reach for in moments like this. She knew the words on the page by heart, often recited them in her head at night and let the beauty behind them carry her into mournful sleep. The fact that she’d brought it along on this trip tore her with annoy and comfort alike. But like a charm, the damn letter had brought her so much luck ever since she’d received it. The Last Emperors had gone from success to success, they’d became so known that they were getting invited to dance tournaments and camps and even on this trip, they’d hit the jackpot. A series of heavy sighs filled the room like a melancholic ballad as her hands drew near the edge of the imprinted page. She opened her mouth and without realizing, whispered the words to herself between short breaths.
Come to me, and in the very spot where our paths meet is where I want, and have to have you. No words to be spoken, no scenes to prepare. None of it is needed…just you. Romance is replaced by lust. Tenderness is replaced by animalistic desire and compulsion. No need to slowly unfasten buttons, having our clothing create a silhouette drawn by the candle light. Rip every item from me, as I do the same to you. Lift me, so that I may wrap myself around you, for lying isn’t a necessity. Let our moans become the background music as our heartbeats create the rhythm. Don’t whisper sweet, poetic words to me. Instead, make me feel every thought that you have from the beginning, to the climatic end …finally, crash into me, with our bodies intertwined as our breathing and our heartbeats slowly subside in unison, into heavenly bliss.
A blush tucked itself tightly on her high cheekbones. She allowed herself to sink in the bed, shoulders slumped forward, defenseless ego, harmless demeanour. Even after two years of absence, her heart still raced when she dared let thoughts of him intrude. And even after all this time had passed, she remembered his light eyes, the premature silver streak running through his ebony hair like a white fox in the dark, his creamy pale complexion that made him look like a burst of sunlight when he entered a room. It was so wrong what had happened between them – not once, not twice…more times than she could count. Yet when he opened himself to her and no one else, she couldn’t turn him down. They’d made love everywhere. His room, his art studio, his car, her room. One glance from him elicited the passion within her, dousing her with his sensual magnetism like petrol on flickers of fire. He would lament in her leave, orchestrating a lollapalooza of paintings heavy with melancholy and needy wanton fever. Those segment of his pieces always attracted curious minds before settling in ambitious bidding wars. She folded back the piece of paper as she’s done dozens of times since its receipt, purportedly putting away a part of her past. A part of her shame. A part of her secret. But in the darkest corners of her minds, scenes were rolling as clear as the horizon in her ceiling-to-floor length windows. Images of her and Jaiden. All the things he had done. All the things he had said. She closed her eyes and wept loudly.
Julia quietly lauded the interior of her studio apartment. Her bathroom alone was larger than her bedroom in their cosy cul-de-sac in Pantin. The tub would be part of her daily balneology escape. Bath times were always her favorite part of the day, besides lunch and dinner. She sat on the couch, well aware of her lack of productivity so far but content with the complacent and indulgent pace she was operating on this lazy day. The sky was fixed, like an HD picture photoshopped and reprinted on a postcard, with big, unmoving, fluffy clouds stagnant in the baby blue stretch of a background. The windows were large enough to see the highest buildings in Tokyo, all of downtown and its complex highways and superfluous traffic. She stuffed a Krispy Kreme glazed donut into her mouth and struggled to chew it in its entirety. Perhaps it was the sugar high of the unhealthy snack she’d just gorged, perhaps it was that so-called women’s intuition but she had a strong gut feeling that this was a new beginning. Living in Tokyo for the next couple of months was going to be great for them and monumental for their career. By the time the clouds finally began to shift eastbound, she was fast asleep.
The machine creaked as her feet beat down on the moving track. 17 minutes and 36 seconds had passed at a speed that would make Usain Bolt proud and she wasn’t about to stop now. Even though her legs were crying in agony, asking to be released, to not be used against their will. Today was the kind of day made for lounging, dining and dreaming and when Lorra found herself actually daydreaming about Laurent, she knew dire measures needed to be taken. It’d been over a year since she’d gone to a gym, let alone run on a treadmill. Dancing not only kept her lean and fit but made any other exercise seem redundant. Yet here she was going on 10km, sweating like an obese man restricted from severe diarrhea, panting and wheezing but continuing to push through nonetheless. Sex had a tendency to complicate things that would much rather benefit from being kept simple. But she had no time or energy to dedicate to hassle or anything for that matter that wasn’t pertaining to dance. Yet here he was in the forefront of her mind, a bushy-Afro lanky dancer parting her in ways she felt embarrassed to admit felt good. Really, really good. She was hoarding nascent emotions for him and that scared her more than losing, more than failure. Loss could be subdued but feelings were an incontrollable force.