Sunday, January 21, 2007

Aumgn - For Holger Czukay

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'Aumgn,' she said.

Not that that was what she actually said. Aumgn was just the sound she made. She couldn't form words properly with the gag in her mouth.

Whatever it was she meant, though, she was keen for me to understand.

'Aumgn,' she repeated, urging her chin forward. 'Aumgn.'

I stopped what I was doing and looked at the pile of books on her bedside table - I was sortof straddling her, at the time, my cock and balls resting on her taut little tummy, so the books appeared reduced, spied as if from a great height, the perspective awry. I started reading through the titles (I'll admit, the sound she made - Augmn - kind of wrongfooted me, she disturbed my stroke, I froze and the books arrested my attention, took me away, momentarily, from whatever it was that she wanted). There were seven books on the bedside table (I counted), all of them concerned, one way or another, with ornithology; more specifically, concerned with murmurations, the huge, sweeping, kaleidoscopic clouds conjured in the autumn sky by enormous flocks of birds preparing to migrate. She was studying again. Preparing herself for whatever it was that was brewing in her head. Her next painting, sculpture, installation. Murmurations was very much the thing of the moment.

'Augmn,' she said again, much more frantically, shaking her naked hips, bucking as much as the scarves tied at her wrists and ankles allowed. 'Augmn, augmn, au-g-mn.' Over and over, Augmn, Augmn, Augmn. So I took her nipple between my thumb and index finger and twisted, painfully, the way you'd twist a key in a lock - if the key wouldn't turn or the lock oblige. I twisted and I squeezed. I squeezed and I drove my recently bitten thumbnail into the delicate skin hard enough to draw blood. Adelle closed her eyes and turned her head, arching her back as she pushed into the pillow. It hurt. I could tell. It hurt like hell. But she liked it.

This was the thing with Adelle. Sex, no matter how good it was, wasn't enough. Adelle liked pain. She was a complicated girl. I'd been seeing her for maybe seven months and that period of time had recorded a gradual accretion of askings: she wondered if I'd... how did I feel about... next time, could we... She wanted tying up. She wanted me to bite her face so it left teethmarks. She wanted me to piss in her mouth. She wanted me to stub cigarettes out on her thighs. She wanted me to slap her, forehand, backhand, forehand, as we fucked. She wanted me to insert pieces of metal in her cunt, the sharper and potentially more dangerous the better, as I licked her out.

It was a source of no small dischord at first.

I remember, one afternoon, she said she was tired of the slapping, it wasn't enough, she wanted me to punch her, she wanted me to punch her hard in the face, hard enough to loosen a tooth - and I said no, I didn't want to do that - and she told me I was a pussy (she spat the word out, you fucking pussy, and then she spat, actually spat, spat like a punk priestess into my face, which was all she could do because once again she was tied to the bed - and I punched her, with bubbly spit dripping offof my chin onto her Barbie duvet cover, once, twice, three times - and she, get this, she closed her eyes and smiled, with blood filling her mouth, she smiled and she said, yessssss, like Kaa, the googly-eyed serpent from The Jungle Book).

A strange thing happened. As I lost interest in Adelle - or, to be blunt, in the interstices between our increasingly violent love-so-called-making - I grew more enamoured of the unpleasantness. It was as if Adelle has seen something in me I'd not even known about myself, had kicked open the door to some fetid room - and now the door was open there was no way it was ever going to close. What's more, the one encouraged the other: the more disinterested I grew, the further I was prepared to go - and Adelle wasn't daft, could sense what was happening, used it, drew on it, fed it the way wood feeds a fire.

Which brings us all the way back to: Augmn.

She opened her eyes and looked at me, made the sound again and gestured once more with her chin. I pointed at the books the way a child points at ice-cream. Adelle shook her head, brow-creased and tried to nod in the direction of the window. I clambered off of her and stood.

The window, I said.

Again, the shake of a head.

I looked down from the window. On the floor, alongside the radiator, perched welcoming on top of a pile of dirty t-shirts, was a screwdriver.

The screwdriver, I said.

Augmn, she said, nodding. Augmn.

She wanted me to use the screwdriver on her. She asked for it. She said Augmn. I can't be held responsible for my actions.

Now, can I?

Pete Wild

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