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Checkerboard Combat

Shelly Rae Rich

I don't remember if it was the day it rained bricks or the day it hailed bullets. What I do recall is that it was coming down hard and hurt like hell, so I pulled out my armory of daggers and spears and dodged inside a hotel. A girl in the lobby took my hand (her name was Amanda or Agatha); again, I can't quite remember but she warmed me and we showered together. She was a stick figure with balloon boobs, all of her body fat distributed in those squeaky orbs. I tell you every time I looked at her she was doing something else to spawn yet another erection; she puckered, she purred, she laughed. What a mouth she had, stiff sticky lips - a real go-getter. It cleared outside and I unwittingly ventured into full-scale combat; it was the first day of my adulterous life, and the origin of my home front war.

Don't get me wrong; I'm glad I married Immy, that's short for Imogene, and we've always been pretty good together. Just until - what? When? I don't know, though I think it has something to do with bricks and bullets. Anyway, I thought it would be ok to reveal my arsenal - something expected in an honest relationship - to tell her about me groining Amanda - and the waitress at the dog track, and June the dog-walker. And her best friend's daughter. Revealing that was my big mistake.

A bullet nicked my shoulder. "How could you possibly?" she started. She really looked sweet, with a half-pout like a child whining over stolen candy.

"Nothing to it hun; it's not just me, all men react when their peckers are toyed with." I smacked my gum knowing she hated it. "Face it; you haven't been toying lately." A brick grazed my ear.

"Why can't you just get some big boy toys? A car, a boat, go to the gym," she wondered aloud. I say we don't have the money; it's not like I'm paying for my hobby, I don't even feed 'em. I started pulling the knife from her thigh, the wound was jagged.

"I would never have imagined you to be the type." The type of what? Guy who wants more than a rubber doll? Man who wants affection? But I didn't say these things out loud. The next throw could've been spot-on.

Maybe this really started when Immy went retro last year and completely began ignoring the fact I was alive. Women have a different way of showing out when they hit their mid-life thing. She began a rigid Yoga regimen, turned vegan and started a home business selling home businesses. I don't know what that means; it's a scam if you ask me, but whatever the thing is, it kept her entertained enough that she forgot about bricks or bullets. Most of the time.

She also started redecorating the house, covered the whole thing in checker-fucking-board patterns. Black and white in the den, bright pink and lime combo in the kitchen? "Fuchsia dear," she corrected. The bathrooms in amoeba patches, she referred to as paisley, and maroon - big and miniature squares of colors and prints. And our bedroom? Red polka-dots on white with vertical navy stripes. No kidding. Walking through the house is like having a flashback, but I was never in a war - well, until now - and didn't drop acid either.

Last year she quit wanting intimacy when the heavy rains started; she began throwing bricks and shooting bullets inside, so I was forced to retreat outside until I was completely drenched. I'd sit in a lawn chair and hang there all limp and soggy, until she'd open the sliding glass door, lift her skirt and let me back in. She didn't like looking at me anymore, so she bent over solids - the kitchen table, the back of the sofa, the banister - and I didn't really even know what her face looked like anymore. I so craved the look in her eyes when she came and the soft pliability of her frontside. Her backside is fine - a nice plump tush - but the perfunctory nature of the position made me feel like an unappreciated studhorse.

As ammunition goes, I prefer bricks over bullets; they can be used for building, turned into something constructive. Bullets, well they're just worthless suppositories of malice. But we don't have to worry about it for the moment; Immy and me, we're now in full armistice. She's agreed to participate in sex with vigor - her word - and has promised to look at me during our sessions, whenever it rains, and absolutely whenever I have the urge, as long as I keep my hands out of other cookie jars. Plus she's agreed to drop the vegan obsession. My next course of attack will occur on the matter of our living quarters, and when the time comes I'll use whatever weapons it takes. Big screen televisions come to mind.

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