Chapter Fourteen: Wax Philosophical
Joyce pulled on my leash and brought me down to the carpet we had laid out on the creaky floorboards of our shack. She eased one of her feet- large for a woman's but small for a trans one- onto my back, then stepped down hard. My already shivering naked body was beset my wave upon wave of effortful pleasure. She brought her other foot up and stomped a bit. She was shorter than me, but heavier. I groaned and pressed my face into the carpet. Her feet stepped carefully but heavily lower and lower until one was on my waist and one was on my ass. By this time I was already shaking uncontrollably. With one expertly conducted foot she pressed hard into the lower cusp of my ass, right by my thigh. I bit into the carpet fibers as I came forcefully under her foot's direction.
I laid there shivering from the aftershocks of my orgasm. I didn't notice Joyce had left the room until she came back with a lighter and a red candle. She lit the candle wordlessly and began dripping hot wax on my back, causing my head to jolt back with every burning sting of heat. Soon she had formed tendrils of wax that spiraled from my shoulders to the crack of my ass. A few more drops on my thighs brought me to another orgasm. When she had finished pulling all the wax off, she fingered me and brought me to my third.
Her duties fulfilled, Joyce lay back on the bed, spreading her arms wide and letting me fall lightly into them. She had been administering pain nightly, in as many doses as I could ask for. She had seemed eager to, even happy at times. I hadn't seen her smile so much in years. But over the last week she had been distant, an attribute I found worrying despite the alluring quality it held over me. She had never been the distant one- that had been Michael. I found myself bothered by the possibilities and so when a different topic drifted into mind I was grateful and opened my mouth to share it at once.
"Did you talk to Zoe's doctor friend about the clinic?" I asked, "What did she say?"
I had been too busy fussing around with ink pens in the shack to come with Joyce to visit the former doctor. They had been a lucky find, from a desk in one of the bigger homes closer to the City, and I had been drawing some dicks with truly impeccable crosshatching. Walking to the City and back took a full day, and I had been only too happy to lean on Joyce once again for support. The unbalanced nature of our current relationship weighed on me at times, but it had become impossible for me to pay back all her favors. I hadn't even fucked her in weeks, which had once been my usual payment for dominance rendered.
"With the stuff she has at home and the stuff we found at the clinic, she said maybe she could do it. But she really doesn't want to attempt it alone- I mean she's never even performed SRS, Riese."
"There's books. She can learn!"
"How to perform a surgery she'll never even do again? The woman is sixty-nine, Riese. I don't see the point."
"Why do you think she'll never need to do it again?"
"We're the last of a dying breed, Riese," Joyce sighed, "Let's face it- when was the last time you heard of someone coming out as trans?"
"Cilantro did! A month ago!"
"You're missing the point. They're not getting surgery. Or taking hormones. Because the first one is impossible and the second involves a shit ton of scavenging."
"So? They'll learn how to synthesize hormones again some day! We still exist!"
"Kids these days are raised by gangs, Riese. Or unions. Groups with group mentalities and goals, that the kids share. They're not going to give up that safety for the kind of lives we've lived- foraging, missing doses all the time, feeling like shit. Nah. Well, maybe some will. Not many though. You remember when liberals used to call us 'brave'? Fuck that. Trans kids these days are fucking brave. It's like the Wild fucking Northwest out here."
I winced, sighed, and offered no rebuttal. We got up, took turns pissing, then moved to the couch. Joyce brought out a joint and gave me a hit. I stared at the smoke, then at her. It had been three months since she killed Stanley, and in all that time I had come no closer to deciphering the riddle he had posed in his last moments. He had claimed God's computer was nothing more than a statue, housing a tiny processor. That couldn't be true, because Joyce had been resurrected by the mighty processor that stony laptop must have housed. Every time I asked her she confirmed this. If there had been any logic to what Stanley had said, she would know. It had probably been a desperate lie. Yet I couldn't shake this weird feeling that in this last attempt at self-preservation Stanley had shielded himself behind at least a partial truth. I decided I was going to question Joyce yet again.
"Riese," she said, interrupting my thought.
"I... I'm seeing someone else."
We sat in silence for barely a minute. It felt like an hour. My emotions swelled up but got stuck in my throat. I swallowed them down and bit my lip. I couldn't manage to look at Joyce- her mere blurry presence in the corner of my vision was a fiery star that singed my retinas. It was too much to bare, so I got up and went outside.
I sat down in Bryan the Wise's old rocking chair. He had insisted we take it after Joyce and I returned his gun to him. Thankfully Stills and Young were unharmed and safe. Stanley had come shortly after I left, and hadn't appreciated Bryan's buckshot greeting with the same good humor I had. He had taken Bryan's gun from him but Cosby had managed to fight him off. They were lucky the shotgun took so long to reload and that Stanley wasn't a gun guy. So I rocked back and forth for a bit. Joyce came out and asked if I was okay. I managed a shaky yeah and we sat together a while.
"He lives pretty close," Joyce said, "In one of those McMansions they got a bit to the south. Only he totally gutted it. It's dope, I feel shitty about leaving you alone in the shack."
"The shack's okay. We fixed it together. How long?"
"A couple weeks."
"I honestly didn't know it was going to piss you off. We were never actually exclu-"
"Fuck that, Joyce! Michael and Stanley are dead! We're living alone together in a shack! Why do I have to ask you if we can be exclusive?"
"Uh, because we've never done that before? And I've definitely never done that with a girl before? Look, you're my best friend. We've been through some real shit. I like domming you. But this shit is messy as fuck. Thank you for bringing me back. I've got a whole new life now and I gotta figure it out."
"...I know. I wanted to help."
"Help yourself, first."
I cried a bit, and Joyce hugged me. Then she announced she was going to spend the night at her boyfriend's and walked off. The sunset kept me company after that. It grew more beautiful every year the atmosphere became clearer. Autumn had turned the leaves on the trees dotting the landscape to warm red embers of dying light. Soon the great fire on the horizon faded, but the night was warm and still and I stayed rocking. I felt my head grow heavy as I rocked myself to sleep.
Suddenly the night grew cold. Not just cold, but empty. I woke and everything in my vision was white. There was a wall of whiteness, growing, sucking the warm air away, leaving emptiness. I screamed, but the wall sucked that away too. I winced and braced off myself as my body was enveloped in the cold nothingness.