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Old 10-20-2013, 09:53 AM   #1
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Anything At All, chaper 9a

Hey everybody. Thanks to the people who have been so patient in waiting for this and thanks especially to my supportive and insightful readers Rhiannon64 and Xfinityy. This last chapter is so challenging for me that I decided to release the first half-- which has been done for quite a while-- on its own and continue work on the second part. As always, you can request the complete chapter here or via PM. If you're a new reader I'll be happy to send the PM portion of other chapters. And as ever, I adore feedback. Thanks, all.

Chapter 9a
Edge lay in Solveig's bed with the morning light streaming in over his head, listening to her quiet movement in the outer rooms. A shift of bare feet, clinking cutlery. A burst of running water, soft clunk of a cupboard door, the sound of glass things being moved. She was making coffee.

He had woken slightly when she left the bed. From the fastness of sleep he felt her stir. The blanket rose and a brief waft of air rushed in before it fell, enclosing him in the sweet warmth she left behind. He was cloudily aware of her coming around the bed to retrieve her clothes. She has stood near him for so long without moving that he looked up. She raised two fingers to her lips in a gesture part greeting, part shush. He obediently closed his eyes. A warm ghost of touch slid over his brow before he plunged back into dreamlessness.

He rolled over now and surveyed her room from the pillow. Everything was strangely still and separate, each a little record of her presence. Her boots still standing by the door and the oil lamp squatting innocently on the table. A few odd things sat on her dresser; a vase, some little statuary and-- he smiled-- a bra, neatly folded. The oil lamp squatting innocently on the table, and his own things scattered on the floor like evidence. On the bed table she had placed a jar of water and a fresh towel. He reached for the cigarettes in his jacket and lay for a long time, thinking. Outside in the main rooms she was quiet now. Maybe she was sitting in the sunshine reading a magazine, drinking her coffee.

It had to be midmorning at least. Their security detail would be in full panic mode by now unless Adam had made it home and remembered to tell someone where he was. He suddenly understood that the entire crew- that hundreds of people- knew exactly what he'd been up to. He heard imagined snatches of conversation among the roadies. “Girl... bar yesterday... little waitress.” He didn't know if he could walk back in with Adam's beautifully high handed swagger as though he had simply taken his due, as if this were simply another rock star discursion. He knew that this-- that Solvieg-- had been one of the most intensely private experiences of his life. The birth of his girls were surrounded by doctors, nurses, family and visitors. At his wedding of course there was a crowd. Even his first time had been rife with teasing and anticipation from friends, laughter as they went up the stairs and passing footsteps from outside the door. But this... he wanted to tuck it inside his shirt and wear it there safe from anyone else, ever. For not a single other being ever to see it, except one. At last he gathered his clothes and headed for the toilet standing empty through an open doorway.

There were two bottles of shampoo in the shower which he surveyed in the billowing steam. He sniffed the first cautiously: candy. That would be the flatmate. He opened the second and there she was; a leafy green smell and amber resin, faintly musty. He was readying it in his hands when he realized how it would be. In the bathroom of an empty room in another city he would let down his hair again and the sudden scent of her would rise up, disembodied in the damp heat. He would stand there alone, the scent of her hair enmeshed with his own but herself a million miles away. He rinsed his hands off and scoured his head with scalding water instead.

Opening the toilet door with his shirts tossed over his shoulder, he found her in the kitchen. She was busy with something on the worktop, bent in concentration with her back to him. After a minute she held the thing up-- a cocoanut that poured water into the sink. She stopped to tend something on the cooker, then picked up a heavy chef's knife. With the flat back side she gave the cocoanut a resounding series of thwacks, turning it around in her palm until it cracked neatly in half. She made a satisfied noise and began to pick the smooth flesh inside. At his chuckle she turned, her face breaking into a shy grin.

"Hey there."

"Hi," he said. They stood looking at each other.

"Did you sleep all right?" she asked presently.

"I did. And yourself?"

"I slept great. I do feel a little tired this morning, though." She gave him a roguish smile.

He grinned and cleared his throat, willing his blush to stay down. It was true. He felt almost irrepressibly well and just a little dazed, as if he had been swimming: light headed and lazy, tingling down to his fingers, sleepy and almost buoyant. She was wearing a another pair of jeans cuffed up over her ankles and a pale yellow t shirt a little too small, translucent in the slanted light. Her bare toes pressed sturdily on the wooden floor. She had had a shower too-- her hair was mostly dried, with a few dark streaks clinging to the crown.

He realized that he was staring and that a fragrant but darkening smell was coming from the pan on the cooker. "Eh, is that--?"

She jumped and hastily removed a pan from the flame. "Whoops! There, it's not quite burned. That was the last one anyway. Are you a breakfast eater, do you want one?"

"Not usually until a little later in the day, but is that coffee over there?"

She passed him a mug from the cupboard and went back to the cooker. Covertly he observed her as he poured. She took something out of the pan-- a thin little griddle cake just a few inches across. She spread butter and a thin drizzle of maple syrup, and then rolled the whole thing in a little tube and ate it with her fingers. She caught him looking but said nothing. They stood in companionable silence.

"Okay," he said finally, "I'll try one. That looks really good. Do you always cook for company?"

“Only if they come on a Sunday. These are my little weekend celebrations, the cocoanut and the ployes. Usually I have long days Thursday, Friday and Saturday and then Sunday I get to--." She stopped abruptly and looked away. He understood. She had all day to spend here, to read in the sun or watch movies in bed, but he was going.

In a moment she had brushed it off and handed him a griddle cake and began to prepare another for herself. He handled it gingerly, unsure of how to go about the business. His fingers were getting sticky fast. She looked back over her shoulder just as he caught a drip.

“Oh! You can't be polite about it or it goes everywhere. Go for a big bite, like half of it at once,” she advised.

Warm nutty cake, fragrant butter and the slight strange sweetness of maple. Her eyes crinkled as she watched him.


"You have a little something on your chin." She pointed to her own face and he followed the motion: drop of syrup on his beard. He wiped it away. She brushed her hair out of her face, leaving a white streak on her cheek.

"Uh oh. Now you have some. There's a spot of flour right there."

She wiped at it and missed.

“No,” he said. "Right there." He touched his finger to the dusty spot. Solveig grew very still for a moment, and then her lashes slipped down as she turned and kissed the heel of his hand. He didn't remember making a choice to take her in his arms. He found her there, bundled in his grasp with her chin turned up to his. He eased back against the worktop and pulled her with him, savoring the soft warmth of her body. Inside the flat was deep warm quiet. There was no limit to the number of ways he could kiss her, no touch that she didn't respond to, and for a time he gave himself over to it. Then outside somewhere a lorry began to beep. A clock was ticking steadily in another room. Edge took a long breath and gently released her.

"I need to go."

Solveig nodded and stepped away. The front of his body, suddenly cool, missed her with a fierce ache. Her lips were darkened with his kisses.

“Well.” She cleared her throat and straightened her dress. "It's... it's been nice. I'm glad you could come."

"Yeah," he said thickly.

Solvieg turned and began putting dishes into the sink Each one of them made a dry, final little sound. Mug, clank. Spoon, clank. Griddle, clank. Then she took a deep breath and faced him, awkward and very bright. "That was really fun, Edge. Thanks."

He hesitated. "I- I don't know what to say."

"You say thank you."

He held her eye for just a second and begin to pace. Nice, she said. Fun, she said. Was that what they had been doing, was having fun? He was aware of her eyes following him, of his accelerating heart, of something huge that was dying.

"I can't," Edge said, turning abruptly as he reached the end of the little kitchen. "Fun, nice--- Solvieg, are you mad?"

"What do you want me to call it? I had a great time."

"We had a great time,” he repeated. “Jesus. Listen, I can't do this. I've got-- things. People. I have stuff I need to do, I've to get out of here. I only had one night, okay? That's all I had to give."

"Of course it was only one night,” Solvieg said. “That’s all it was ever going to be-- we knew that from the beginning. That doesn't mean you can throw it in my face. It doesn't mean you can be a bastard about it."

Edge began to pace in an attempt to shake off his helpless growing rage. "I didn't know. I didn't know how it was going to be."

"What else could it be?" she said, her voice rising.

He clenched his hands to still the shaking. "Nothing, it never could have been anything. Christ what a mess. I knew I never should have--."

“Okay, that’s good right there," Solvieg interrupted. "You never should have. You can go now." Her eyes when he turned to face her were sharp and narrow.

“Wait, that’s not what I meant. I just--"

"I don't really care what you meant. Now would you please get the fuck out of my house?"

"Solvieg, stop. I can't do this." he said desperately. "Eighteen months, do you know how long that is? Anything could happen to you or to me. My work taking me all over the place, my children on another continent. It couldn't be fair--"

Her mug hit the worktop with a hard thump. "Why do you keep talking like I'm asking you for something? Arrogant fuck."

They were shouting over each other now; he could hardly hear her for the anger thundering in his ears, and it was making him afraid he might lose it completely “Just- stop! I-- This wasn't I what I wanted."

"Yeah. Well. I know that now, don't I?" She held out her hand in a pausing gesture and took a long breath, hands pressed to her face. Her fingers were shaking. "I think… I think this is all my fault. I should have guessed how it would be. I knew what you are when were started, and I'm sorry that I did that."

Edge gaped, stunned with rage. "You knew what I was," he said slowly. "Fuck. Fuck! Is that what you think of me? That this was all some grand fuck-and-run scheme I had-- that this is what I want? "

"I don't know, Edge!" she cried in frustration. "Why don't you tell me what you want, because I don't fucking know."

When he pushed her up against the refrigerator she hit with an audible thunk. He pinned her with his chest, teeth clenched and breathing hard.

"This," he said. "You. All of this. Your flat, your coffee, your sheets, your fucking magazines. I want it and God help me I can't."

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Old 10-20-2013, 10:18 AM   #2
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I so love the way you write, Jeevy. Everything is described so perfectly. Me, I tend to almost always write in the first person. I also write as I speak, lol. I think there tends to be mind games in my writing, maybe too much, lol.

I'm not much of a reader, never have been, preferring to write instead but I do like this, even though I'm a Bonowhore, lol.

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Old 10-24-2013, 08:45 PM   #3
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You have a gift, mama.
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Old 10-24-2013, 08:58 PM   #4
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Thanks, you.
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Old 10-26-2013, 02:56 PM   #5
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Awesome, you posted the chapter!

Jeevey, I love this story! Not only can I see the scene but I feel like I'm experiencing it along with the characters. I love the way you use multi sensory description in your writing. I can smell the shampoo, taste the almost burned griddle cake, hear the clock ticking, (I like the way the beep of the lorry reinforces the ticking of the clock that Edge has to leave soon). I can feel Solveig's anger and Edge's frustration.

This is a great private moment:
But this... he wanted to tuck it inside his shirt and wear it there safe from anyone else, ever. For not a single other being ever to see it, except one.
That is such a powerful line.

Another Fave:
"This," he said. "You. All of this. Your flat, your coffee, your sheets, your fucking magazines. I want it and God help me I can't."
I love this line. I'm so glad you kept it. This line, to me, sums up his feelings for her and the fact that he is openly admitting it. She has everything he wants and needs. The simplicities of life or the things that others may take for granted are the ones that matter the most. (Comforts of home). He really loves her but the circumstances of his life don't seem to allow for them to be together.

Well done!

Yes, please. PM.
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Old 10-30-2013, 07:58 AM   #6
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awww I loved the chapter!!

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Old 05-30-2015, 07:03 PM   #7
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Tragedy!! I honestly cannot locate the complete, PM version of this chapter anywhere in my files. Does anyone have it?
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:14 AM   #8
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uh! i would like to get that one PMd

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