I came back. It took nearly a week of suppressing my emotions and increasingly demanding physical urges, but I came back. Zim opened the door and nodded knowingly; a new battle was simply added to our usual routine. It was struggle for dominance not unlike our childhood skirmishes—an impassioned physical fight in which all of my body and mind were engaged. I knew at any moment he might try to kill me, and that made the experience all the more exhilarating. My mind struggled to maintain control of my body, but I was grossly disadvantaged. I was a human teenager, and Zim was an Irken. I was horny and easily exhausted, while Zim had no particular urge for sex (although he seemed to enjoy it on several occasions) and no need for sleep.

I never fell asleep at Zim's house. It would've been suicide.

No matter my tiredness, no matter the hour, I always dragged myself home. Gaz wasn't particularly interested in my whereabouts; my father was simply happy I had found a friend.

Zim certainly wasn't my friend—he might have been an enemy and a lover, but nothing in between. My father didn't need to know that, however. He would've been disgusted by what I had done. My affinity for the alien wasn't helping my self-esteem in the slightest. I felt like everyone knew the repulsive thing I'd been doing. Skool was miserable. I hated myself, and I hated the feelings that had begun to grow.

At the moment of each orgasm, I had to bite my tongue. I had to be silent. I was afraid of what I might say. I might cry out, 'I love you' when I in all honesty didn't mean it. What I felt for Zim wasn't love. It was somewhere in between love and hate, some undefined emotion closer to insanity. But I was at my weakest beneath him; I was at my most vulnerable. So I fought ruthlessly for my dominant position, and in most cases I succeeded. I was stronger than Zim, should he not implement the metal arms in his pak. I was safest this way, although not entirely invulnerable.

But about a month after our encounters had begun, something changed. I became disheartened, dispassionate, and disillusioned with the world around me. Zim was all I had left.

I collapsed onto the couch and let him touch me. I let me mind fall away from my body. Zim could have easily killed me; I would have been unoffended if he did. And that was all right.

It was a battle I no longer wanted to win.

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