Author: calligraphied PM
A first-time prostitute encounters the great Meyer Lansky. Follows the events of 'The Emerald City', Meyer/OC.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama - Meyer L. - Chapters: 3 - Words: 6,518 - Reviews: 8 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 3 - Updated: 08-31-12 - Published: 01-31-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7792104
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
(I was thinking of turning this into a story of some kind, but I'm not really sure so...for now this stays as a one shot. Enjoy!)
Warning: Sexual content.
I'm sitting at my vanity, lip rouge and perfume lying scattered before me, when the thought hits me.
What am I doing here…
The tone of it, ringing clear in my head, is startling in the middle of such peaceful silence – anxious, fearful, uncertain even. But far worse is the question it proposes. What am I doing here? I'm no artful seductress, no siren who lures her victims in with the sound of the sweetest, softest song. Like any young, restless girl, I've had my share of encounters with boys, but this – this is different.
With my old life still holding fast, the ashes of it still fluttering around inside me, I must make room for the new. A life made of painted doll faces and shuttered dark windows, little whispers of regret in the night (tucked away in our rouge-stained pillows). I must adapt to it, all of it.
At first, Madame allowed me to rest soon after she took me in. Long days, even longer weeks passed, and she at last sauntered in this morning with a thick haze of smoke trailing in behind her. With the sour burn of cigarettes and sickly sweet perfume in the air, she announced that today I would begin to earn my keep. If I am to stay here, as we have agreed, I will work. The look on my face must have told it all; she'd turned back on her heel, on her way out the door, and she told me, trust me dollface you'll get used to it soon enough.
I look outside the window, finding that the fading hours have brought with them the star-dusted twilight. Night soon falls over the boardwalk. Clusters of people, most of them dressed in ill-fitting, shabby clothes, ghost gently down the path. These are the lost causes and embittered souls. Here and there, a few dressed in finery with furs dangled over silk waistcoats and low-waisted dresses travel down the length of the boardwalk, but they are small in number, coming and going as they please. Pearls swing and twinkling gold chains (and watches hidden behind embroidered pockets) rustle with the movement of fast feet. All shades of colors dance with the fiery shards of sunset, still clinging to the last faltering embers of day. Those dreary blacks and vibrant pastels all melt together into a diverse spectrum of people. How different those two worlds are, how far away they seem from one another. And yet here they are – walking down the boardwalk, passing each other by.
A knock at the door. Madame pokes her head in, her face puckered under white powder and deep scarlet rouge. "Hurry up girl. You ain't makin' me any money sittin' there gawking at yourself. Get goin'."
"Yes, madame," I tell her. She leaves.
I return to the mirror, hands blindly searching for lip rouge. The small tube finds them instead and rolls in between my trembling fingers. It really won't be so bad. One girl, Vera, told me to shut my eyes and imagine I'm somewhere else, in the arms of a faithful lover or lying back in a warm sunlit field of wildflowers. As she spoke, I'd watched the numbness of surrender dim her sharp blue eyes, the broken pieces of her glinting in the background like painted glass. It made me think maybe she's distanced herself for far too long. I know she'd been trying to help me, make things better, but in the end it only made the fear sink in deeper (I don't want to end up like her).
I shakily apply the rouge, pushing all thoughts from my head. The silky chemise slips down over my knees as I lean forward to reach for the powder. One dab over the nose, another over my forehead and chin. Twice I pinch my cheeks to give them a little color.
Motionless, I watch my reflection. There, I see a girl with a painted doll face and coiled hair draped along the curve of her neck. I close my eyes and breathe in deeply, once, through my nose. It spreads a thin veil of calmness over me, stilling the rushing blood and pounding heart.
In the corner of my eye, I see something scuttle across the corner of the vanity. The little mouse I've been sharing my room with moves his little legs so quickly I can barely see them against the mellow gold glow of the light. He climbs up the frame of the mirror.
"Wish me luck, Mr. Legs," I whisper to him. He seems to stop and move his small pink nose side to side, as if puzzled, then hurries onward.
In the hall, I pass one or two girls leading clients to their rooms by the hand. Here and there, one will drift by, completely unaware of the world in her drunken stupor. Then there's the giggles and the film of smoke and perfume which curls around this place, making it feel as if you were walking through a dream. At the foot of the stairs, I turn right and push my way through the crowds of shrieking girls and men shaking with laughter to find the bar.
Joe, the tender, watches for a minute while I situate myself on a stool. The chemise rustles loudly even over the clamor of the rest of the room.
"First night workin'?"
I throw him a withering look. "How'd you know?"
"I was mostly guessin'," he says, setting a shot glass down in front of me. "But the deer in the headlights look sorta gave you away."
My forehead sinks into the palm of my hand. "Just give me something hard that will make it disappear."
"Don't fret too much about it," he assures me, offering a crooked smile and a shot of whiskey. "The dames around here don't seem so bad off."
I reply with a nod and knock back the shot. As soon as I put the glass down with a hard smack I hear my name being called.
I turn my head in the direction of the voice, seeing Madame waving me over desperately with her eyes nearly popping out of her skull. With a sigh I slip off the barstool, compose myself, and make my way through the crowd once again with relative ease.
When I reach Madame, she pulls me close to her – so close I can smell her overpowering perfume.
"There you are. You got customers waiting, have been for the last ten fuckin' minutes! Now listen here," she says, her drawl somehow more pronounced. "I got you a boy out there, little guy. Never had a girl in his life. You show him a good time and he'll tip you real nice."
"What's his name?"
"Didn't say, didn't ask," she says, pushing me in the direction of the foyer. "Go on now girl he'll tell it to you if he feel like it. And remember it ain't your job to be coy."
I'm about to walk in the direction of the foyer when my feet suddenly fail me. They stop, dead, in the middle of the hall.
I face Madame one last time. "How will I know it's him?"
She's lighting up another cigarette, her eyes downcast. "I told you. Little guy. Big puppy dog eyes. Don't look any older than a choir boy."
And without another word she heads into the saloon – leaving me alone in the shadowed corridor.
Not wanting to leave a good paying customer waiting, I straighten my shoulders and head into the foyer. Usually it's not so crowded – it's the saloon and rooms upstairs where all the business is handled. The foyer, for the most part, is where the waiting happens. Waiting for Madame, waiting for a certain girl, waiting for a cab to leave. They come and go like a breath of restless wind, filling us up and leaving us empty, like tawdry playthings which so quickly lose their charm.
Sure enough, at the foot of the stairs, a pair of men stand close together. They seem to be discussing something quite heatedly from the way the smaller one stands on the tip of his toes and the other, towering over his friend, pulls his mouth into a taut, stubborn line.
"No need to fight, boys," I scold them, and their eyes fall on me. "There's more than enough of me to go around – if that's what you like."
"Thanks but no thanks, doll," says the taller one in a deep New York drawl. I can't place where, but he's certainly from somewhere upstate. "Just my boy here. Can you believe it? Never had a fuckin' girl before in his life."
"Charlie…" The shorter one pleads. He really is young. I hadn't noticed much of him at first, my attention on Tall, Dark and Handsome, but now that I see him I can hardly believe Madame allowed him in. He couldn't be any older than eighteen, holding maybe four inches over me in height. The suit makes him look important, like a real somebody, with the silhouette tailored to fit his slender form. But if I didn't know any better I'd say he was just a lost kid wearing his daddy's Sunday best.
"Forgive my friend, miss…he doesn't know how to talk to a lady."
Charlie snaps brusquely, "quit beatin' your gums and get upstairs. She ain't gonna fuck herself."
He gives the little guy a hard push in my direction. Awkwardly, he stumbles forward, catching himself before he can fall into me. It's obvious the poor thing hasn't been with a girl before. His cheeks are flushed, his shoulders slumped slightly forward, and he can't seem to look me in the eye for more than a moment. Without a word, I reach for him, letting the callus of his hands brush against my palms. He must've had to work hard for that smart looking suit of his.
"Come on, baby." I glance at the man he calls Charlie, whose arrogant little smirk is getting wider by the minute.
"Give it to her real good, Lansky."
I lead him upstairs, away from all the commotion and especially his friend (who, if I'm not mistaken, might be slightly inebriated). We have to dodge a few couples in the halls, but as soon as we're at my door and I steer him inside I lock everything up nice and tight behind me.
I turn, leaning my back up against the wall. His focus has turned to the room itself, shuffling around and taking everything in with a genuine, almost child-like curiosity. He stands at my vanity, back facing me, and one hand reaches out to touch the perfume bottle – the only object that sits off to the side by itself, not jumbled in a heap like the rest of my belongings.
Then he catches a glimpse of the book. I'd been reading it throughout the day to distract me from the anxious roving thoughts in my head (my nerves had made it a little hard to concentrate, but it was nice to have something to do). He runs his fingers over the title – The Scarlet Pimpernel.
He picks it up, showing it to me. "Do you enjoy reading?"
"What, is it so strange for a whore to like books?"
"Of course not, miss, it was not my intent to insult you," he replies genially, setting it back down. "I was only asking if you enjoyed the pastime."
I can't help but wonder at this question. "Have you come here to interview me about my taste in literature?"
"I came here because my friend insisted."
"Why don't we get down to business then?"
I cross the room, floorboards creaking underneath my feet, and sit down on the edge of the bed. I figure, considering how nervous the poor boy is, I should approach him slowly, let him move at his own pace.
Over by the vanity, he hasn't budged. "Mr. Lansky?"
There's a long pause. "You ah – you have a mouse here on your vanity, miss," he says, now slowly inching down as if to grab his shoe.
"Don't!" I rush over to save my little friend, scooping him up into my hands. Mr. Lansky gives me a strange look.
"He's harmless," I explain. "He wouldn't hurt a flea."
"I apologize." He replies, still taken aback by my fervent reaction to his polite offer. I release Legs from my grasp and he dashes behind my perfume bottle, frightened by the shouting.
In my haste to reach the vanity, the strap of my chemise had fallen, baring a considerable amount of flesh to the balmy brine-soaked air. His eyes catch on my pale skin, tracing the curve of my shoulder so slowly downward it's as if he's doing it with his fingers.
I step forward, taking his tie into my hands to loosen it. "No kissing on the mouth."
His voice is a low, glorious rumble in my ear. "Why, if I might ask?"
"House rules," I tell him, removing the tie from his neck. Pulling him closer, I place little butterfly kisses on his pulse point, tracing the edge of his jaw line with my nose. He smells of cologne, the expensive kind, and some sort of sweet – almost like the warm taste of caramel. Beneath these lighter notes that toe that fine line between manhood and boyhood, there's a scent that belongs purely to him. Soft, gentle, almost too shy to poke its head out from beneath the sultry cologne.
As I run my hands over his slight shoulders and his jacket falls in a crumpled heap on the floor, I realize he's watching my every move. His dark eyes are wide and unblinking with nervousness – as if he doesn't trust me.
"If I could request one thing," he says faintly, so hushed that I almost can't hear him.
"Anything you want…"
He blinks at last, eyes stuck on the floor as he swallows anxiously. "Call me Meyer."
It takes me a long time to undress him. First his collar, then the vest and the shirt and the trousers. It was like unwrapping saltwater taffy, the kind you got down on the boardwalk. Shedding each layer of the wrapper until all that's left is the sweet itself. He sits completely still as I peel each piece of clothing off, throwing them on the floor, and tries to breathe carefully in and out of his nose. His hands are at his sides, politely refusing to touch me until he's told.
I push him down onto the bed, his unclothed back against the mussed sheets. Running my hands along his chest (like baby's skin, time not yet etched into the smooth surface), I lean over him, leaving kisses behind.
"Aren't you going to touch me, Meyer?"
I force back his head with a playful nudge, nibbling on the bare skin there. He sighs, the first sound of life I've heard out of him since I loosened his tie, and his warm hands slip up underneath my chemise. I stop to let him pull it over my head, the sound of silk grazing skin falling over us. He rolls me over, his every movement aware of mine, and presses a kiss to my cheek, to my forehead, a brush of his lips lingering over my nose. He hovers over my mouth, dark eyes hooded, while his hands toy with the hem of my knickers. They fall to the floor in a matter of minutes – along with the rest of his clothes.
With a long, aching moan he pushes himself inside me. He buries his head in my neck, hot breath against my skin, fingertips lightly grazing one curved breast. Oh god…I've almost forgotten what this felt like. The feeling of having another body tangled up in mine, lips and heat and fragile moans pressed into my skin. I fasten my legs around his middle, my nails lightly dragging across his back; even the slightest repositioning of my limbs makes him whimper, so close, too close. He shudders, the hard trembles resonating in my bones. It's his first time; he's never known anything like this: what the inside of a woman feels like, how warm and supple and inviting she is.
Before long, the trembling stops and he raises his head. The look in his eyes is half-wild, black and glittering. Tenderly, he nips at my chin, trailing up and down my jawline with lips like breathing satin. Then, with a faltering cry, he pulls out, pushing slowly in again. The curve of his belly skims against my ribcage, the silken flesh soft and warm. He's lowered his head again, cradling his parted mouth against my neck.
I can feel his hands move down, grasping my thighs desperately. His every little cry and moan and whimper stirs the growing heat deep in the pit of my stomach. My legs twitch almost violently, begging him to go faster, harder.
My right hand still clinging to his arched back, I slide my left up the length of his neck, feeling the thick brown waves rustle beneath my fingers. With every thrust of his hips I pull gently on his hair, rousing a thick, throaty groan from deep within him. Harder, faster,I can feel him tensing, his body coiling up from the inside out as if to strike. My head pounding, heart racing in endless circles with his. So close. Standing at the brink. Oh god just a little faster….just a little harder.
I trace the shell of his ear with the tip of my nose. He hits a particularly delicious spot, and I barely manage to keep from screaming.
He let's go with a long, guttural moan. It pulses through him, and I can feel his body tighten over mine (every muscle like a spring). I bite down on his shoulder, resisting the urge to moan.
He winds down, muscles loosening, his body turning soft and yielding again. Shivers run up and down his spine. Unable to move, he holds onto me until the world returns to some semblance of equilibrium. I let him stay where he is and lightly stroke his hair until he seems to gather himself, rolling over onto his back. He's still fighting for breath, but his eyes are weary, almost glassy with pleasure.
I'm thinking of reaching for a cigarette from the carton lying on my vanity when I hear him next to me. "When can I see you again?"
"Whenever you want, darlin'," I tell him automatically, rolling over on my side to look at him.
He does the same, watching me again, eyes taking me in much like he had before with the vanity. This time there's no nervousness in his demeanor. Simple curiosity, interest.
"The female form is certainly a beautiful thing to behold…" He says this mostly to himself, outstretching his finger to drag it along my side until he reaches the pinnacle of my hip, where he turns and starts to outline every dip and curve of my belly up to my breast. The way he does it, so tenderly as he would touch a faithful lover, makes my insides squirm with a strange, unrecognizable feeling.
He lifts his hand to my cheek, cupping it into the arch of his palm. I touch his wrist with my lips and he seems to smile a little before taking it away.
I get up, plucking the robe off the bedpost and slipping it on. He lays back, exhausted, and murmurs, "where are you going sweetheart?"
"I'll be back, don't you worry," I tell him.
I'm only gone long enough to splash some water over my face, ridding it of the powder and rouge. When I return, the robe sliding off one shoulder, I find him asleep, one hand on his chest and the other hanging off the bed. Smiling at the sweet little scene, I tiptoe over to the side of the bed and kneel down, folding my arms over the frame. Half of his body is still trapped and tangled within the snare of the sheets, only his boyish hips poking out from underneath them. For a long time, I watch his chest rise and fall with each calm breath, his eyelids fluttering as he chases a dream. It still strikes me how much he looks like a small boy in a big man's suit.
A knock at the door reminds me where I am. Madame is behind it, informing me that I have another customer waiting.
I lower my head, remembering. I'm only a whore. The little boy in the bed is a grown man, who came in wearing a silk cravat and a wad of cash in his pocket. Soon, he will wake, he will leave this place and I will never hear from him again.
But I let him sleep for a little longer while I dress for the next man.