Teaser 025: You’re Not Single and Available Anyway!

Serena's face was skeptical and unimpressed. “That doesn't have to be how it turns out! You can't predict it. It's just a story.”

“And you're not single and available anyway! You're married but the married part of this is good. What could I do since Serena's married and I feel for her the way I do? Hey! I got it!” I looked at the group. “I could hit up on her!” This brought much laughter. “Yeah, I could do that! Of course, she would have to be receptive to it, which is unlikely, but what if she is? Never know until you try! Oh, there's gotta be a song for it. 'If I can't have you, just a taste will do.' Maybe the Eagles. But a taste of Serena? Well, you know you're close to someone when you can taste them. You can see them, hear them, smell them, that's easy, even feel them. That's why I love to hug. I get to feel you. Note I did not feel you up, but I did feel you. And several times already today I have touched Serena and she has touched me. I've felt her hand touch a part of my body and it felt good. I like to be touched. I think most human beings do, as long as it's done with a genuine sincerity and respect. Taste is different, from all the other senses. When you taste someone you have to lick them. Can't get around it, because those sensory receptacles are on your tongue. I'll bet there isn't a culture in the world which doesn't have some taboo about taste. Human beings, in general I would imagine, frown on someone who goes around licking everyone. There might be an understanding in some cultures if you don't stop licking everyone, they'll cut your tongue out, and then you'll have no taste, which is an observation many have made about me. 'Yes, Gregory has no taste.' No argument here.” Another round of laughter. “No, you have to be close to someone to taste them, and should I ever get close enough to Serena, I'll bet she tastes good. Might even be less filling. Tastes good and is less filling. Am I a shill for light beer? Which reminds me...” I gulped another swallow from my bottle, noting the mania was in full swing. Let it fly. “So, I hit on Serena, because you don't know until you try, and, holy of holies, she's receptive. How do I know? Because instantly her tongue is trying to carve a wider path down my esophagus and to keep myself from choking to death, I'm forced to tongue wrestle as though my life depends on it, which in actual fact it does. But as the tongue wrestling match of the century begins, I discover a very important fact. I was right. She does taste good. As soon as it begins, though, we separate a bit and out of her mouth come the words, 'We need to find a bed.' I instantly perceive this as a signal, green light. You may proceed. At any time to this point, and at any time until we reach the expressway and there are no exits, the light can change to red, and should you proceed through the red light, you're a rapist.

“And this provides me the opportunity to introduce you to the highest truth about sex, from which all other truths descend. In any sex act, typically involving one or more genitalia, and involving only two human beings, once the sex act begins, in that very moment, if the sex act is not mutually consensual, and it is the duty of both to use a means of communication which leaves no confusion, if it is not mutually consensual, one of those human beings is being raped and the other is a rapist. I believe truer words have never been spoken. Does anyone have an argument?” I paused to glance at every human being in the room. The silence was deafening. “Good. In this story, Serena puts out green light after green light, we jump into the sack, we become sexually intimate. Because we took action, and every action which a human being performs has consequences, there are consequences to this action. What would those consequences be? We were discreet enough no one knew. We were clever enough later to hide the fact, to never let on, and no one knew, even suspected. Hey! We managed to avoid any consequences, right? Nobody knows. Nobody suspects. We banged away on each other and got away with it free and clear. Sure we did! Well, no we didn't. Because there are consequences and Serena knows it and so do I. She walked down the aisle to the wedding presider and listened to the words, 'Do you, Serena Dominguez, promise to honor your spouse, your husband, until death do you part?' So did the hundreds of witnesses. And she said, 'I do.' And the hundreds of witnesses heard her say it. That's a promise. That's a commitment, a full commitment. Marriage is a commitment, a full commitment. Jumping into the sack with me, or anyone else, is an act which breaks her word, shatters her promise, and she knows it. So do I. I know she broke her word. Do I have any consequences? Damn straight I do. I helped her break her word, shatter her promise, and this makes me just as guilty. Oh, no, I didn't promise her husband I would honor him. I don't even know him but I'm as guilty because I knew I was helping her break her word. It's like conspiracy to commit murder. You don't commit the act, but you're just as guilty.

“When you keep your word, when you make a promise and deliver, you create a bond, and from it grows a unique human concept, truly above most any other. We call it honor and it is unique, because it's a possession which no one can take away from you.” I glared at Serena. “They can take away your house, everything you own, take away your child, even your husband, they can take it all away. If there are enough human beings against you, organized properly, they can do it. You may think you're rough and tough, but you're not that strong to stand up to it. No one is. It wouldn't be fair, but no one said life is fair. They can take it all away, but they can't take away your honor. They can line up a bunch of people who personally know your honor and, under duress, make them lie and say 'Serena Dominguez is dishonorable. I know from experience.' And you can get those people in private, in a safe environment, confidential, and they'll admit they lied. They know Serena. She is honorable. 'What could I do?' they'll say. 'They threatened my life, the lives of my loved ones.' But all they did was try to convince those who don't know you. They created a fiction for those who don't know you, don't know from personal experience the honor you possess and keep. Fuck them! Those people don't know and those against you failed to take away your honor because they can't do it. They can drag your reputation through the mud but they can't remove your honor no matter how hard they try. It is a possession which belongs to you and should you keep it, you remain some one, someone of note, someone who is worthy, someone anyone can trust. Or you can throw it away, consider it inconvenient, and become no one, no one anyone wants to deal with, no one who is worthy, no one anyone can trust. Once you throw it away, honor is damned hard to regain, and for those who know you gave your word and didn't keep it, you'll never be honorable to them. For me to help you throw away your honor, and throw away mine also as a consequence, I will never hit up on you. This will never happen!

I had to take another beer gulp, but I wasn't finished. I was close. I only needed to add a little more. “But wait!” I grabbed everyone's attention, some by surprise. “There's more! What if Serena comes at me! I know! It's a shock! It's as likely as Jupiter spinning out of orbit to take out Earth, which, of course, won't happen, because as soon as it passes through the asteroid belt and narrowly misses Mars, all the rest of the planets will raise hell, and the Sun, being the final arbiter of all things related to the solar system, will command Jupiter to get back in its orbit and behave, and Jupiter will, a little sheepish and with egg on its face, probably thrown there by Pluto, which is still mad since it's been reduced to a non-planet with the rest of the planets' approvals, and which was delivered with the epithet, 'Take that, you big, obnoxious, gassy bag of wind.'” I couldn't help it. I started laughing, too. “See! I told you it was impossible to believe! Serena comes after me? Did you take your insulin shot? What's your blood sugar level now?” I kept on while most were still laughing uncontrollably. “So indulge me and imagine Serena comes after me. What am I gonna do? You know I want her and all which goes with it, including sexual intimacy, and she comes after me? I have to arm myself. My honor is at stake now. So I remind her of the consequences. 'Serena, there are consequences. Your honor is at stake.' And it stops her...for a nanosecond, which is no time at all and she's back at me. Shit! I need reinforcements and bring more ammunition! I appeal to her sense of reason, as in, 'don't do this, Serena. Think of what will happen.' And it stops her! Hooray! The townspeople all step out warily from rocks and crevices no one knew existed in the town square, ready for the hoe-down, until it passes after a microsecond. This was longer. I'm making progress but she's back at me again. Reinforcements are dwindling, ammo's running low, and the Alamo is about to be overtaken by a Mexican scourge never before witnessed in this millennium. I have one last stand. After this I got nothin'. I plead. 'Please, Serena, please do not do this!' It works. Hallelujah! She stops!...Until a second passes and she comes at me with an even more intense fury because she knows the Alamo's history now, reduced to nothing more than books on a dusty shelf. I can't resist her. I've thrown all I've got at her, and if it didn't stop her and she's that willing to throw away her honor to have me, hell, I'll throw away my honor too...But it will never happen, because Serena Dominguez does know what honor means, what it takes to keep it, so she'll never do it, with me or anyone else. And, as an extra added bonus, the Earth is never swallowed whole by a rampaging, ravaging, uncontrollable Jupiter and astronomers worldwide rejoice! 'Hooray! We're still employed!' And everyone all over the world unanimously elects Serena as World Dictator and for decades peace and cooperation and love reign over our tidy little planet...Well, maybe the Jupiter thing is far-fetched, and Serena as World Dictator seems a stretch, though I'd vote for her, but that's the end of the story.”

Will and Ken could not contain themselves. “Hooray!

- Just Desserts, Segment ThreeA Taste of Mexican Hospitality” by Gregory R. Schussele, © 2021

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