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The Best of 2012
by Elliot DeLocke
By Cherry Black
Never Leave Me Alone
By JT Langdon
By Jean Roberta
My Indentured ...
Sword And ...
A Stiff Neck
By Robert Buckley
The Magic Lesbian
By Teresa Lamai
By William Dean
Note to Self
by Geneva King
Girls' Night Out
by Giulia Cosentino
by J.T. Benjamin
by J.Z. Sharpe
by Nicholas M.
by Remittance Girl
The Problem of Leather
by Roxy Katt
Taste of Jessica
by TD Fallon
My Dark and Empty Sky
by Teresa Wymore
by Tulsa Brown
by Kathleen Bradean
The Magic Lesbian
Callie Sauer slammed her hand down on the dark, polished wood hard enough to topple an empty beer bottle.
"I want the damned bar, Joe. Name your price."
"The bar's not for sale, Callie." I said, absently wiping a shot glass as I scanned the room. It was Thursday, always a good night. The mood was mellow and the ladies were enjoying themselves, which meant they were buying lots of liquor.
"It ain't fucking right; you know it," Callie half-hissed and half-growled through clenched teeth.
Marigold put her two cents in where it wasn't wanted. "Hey, Sour-Puss, are you fucking deaf, or what part of 'It isn't for sale' didn't you understand?"
Callie shifted her bulk like a sumo wrestler. Before she answered, she eyed Marigold up and down, pretty much the way I do every night. Mari likes to look tough, with her leather pants and leather tank top revealing the dagger tattoo across her belly button and the outside curves of her outsized tits. Long dark, curly hair framed an angel's face with killer brown eyes. At 5 feet 3 inches, she was lean as a whip. Callie outweighed her by at least 150 pounds.
Callie licked her lips and smirked, "Watch it, Honey. Point that finger at me one more time and I'll shove it so far up your snatch you'll be able to pick your nose with it."
"All right," I snapped, "I don't need any of this shit." I stepped in front of Mari and put one palm against her ample chest. Looking over my shoulder to Callie I said, "Look, Ms. Sauer, I don't tolerate anyone threatening anyone in my bar, especially one of my bartenders."
Callie just grinned. Mari pleaded with me, "Come on, Joe. Let me paste her. Just one. I'll hit her so fucking hard her chins will giggle for a week."
"I heard that, you little cunt!" Callie boomed.
"That's it," I warned. "Everyone cut the shit!"
I spun Mari around. "Get your ass down the end of the bar. You got customers needing refills. And while you're there slap Ginger on the ass and remind her there are other people in this room needing to drink besides her girlfriend."
Mari made a face and stalked away. Callie looked longingly after her with a twisted grin. "I'll pay you three times what this dump's worth if you throw that little alley cat into the deal," she said in her tinny, nasal voice.
"You make your own deal with Marigold," I snickered. "But the bar - now read my lips - ain't for sale."
"What the fuck is a straight guy running a fucking dyke bar? Your Aunt Judy would've wanted someone like me to have it."
"No, Callie. She left it to me just so you wouldn't have it." I looked her level in the eye when I said it. I wanted to drive that point home. "Anyway, you own every lesbian bar in town and the burbs. How many was it last I checked, close to five? What the hell do you want this one for?"
"Just because I don't own it, and because you do, and that pisses me off."
"Well, watch your blood pressure, cause you're going to have to live without it."
"You'll be hearing from me again, Joe," she said. Then raising herself off the stool like a hot air balloon she seemed to levitate to the exit.
Maybe I ought to take her money, I thought. Hit the road and put this town behind me. I never succeeded at anything I really wanted to do here. I never had any kind of ambition to run a tavern, much less one called The Magic Lesbian. But, so far, it's the only thing I've managed to do well.
Aunt Judy. Damn, I loved that woman. She loved me like her own. I guess it made it easier for her to keep the connection with her sister, my mother. But they never did reconcile, never put it behind them. When Judy died, Mom went to her funeral. She was the only one besides me from the family who did. Even so, Mom was as crazy as a cat trying to cover shit on a marble floor having to sit through the service with hundreds of bawling dykes.
So Aunt Judy left me the bar, and the goodwill of her loyal customers who cut me some slack just so The Magic Lesbian wouldn't fall into Callie Sauer's clutches.
Three years later I'm still pouring them drinks, then pouring myself into my sheets cause I don't stand a snowball's chance in hell with any of them for obvious reasons. All that fondlesome female flesh, not just off limits, but off the menu entirely.
It happens that I've developed some close relationships with a lot of the girls. That cliché about people telling their bartender things they wouldn't tell their wife, husband, shrink, whatever ... it's true. Sometimes I listen to these ladies and I think I should be wearing a stole and a Roman collar.
I don't know. Straight women tell their gay guy hairdressers everything. So, maybe a lesbian confiding in a straight guy bartender is just the other side of the coin.
"Hi, Joe, how's it going tonight?"
I turned to see Jessica's sweetly forlorn face. She could break your heart with that lost puppy dog expression. She had been crying. I knew before she asked what the problem was.
"Have you seen Krista tonight?" she nearly whimpered.
"No, Jess. Haven't seen the K in more than a week."
Jessica turned her head as if that would keep me from noticing her chin tremble.
"Jessie," I said, leaning over the bar toward her, "let me buy you a drink."
She nodded, "Okay, a whisky sour?"
"You got it." I mixed her sour and poured it into a glass, dropping in a handful of cherries. That got her to smile, if only slightly.
"I love cherries," she said, wiping her eyes before delicately plucking the maraschinos from the glass and lifting them to her mouth. The faded red of cherry juice and liquor coated her lips. Slowly, sensuously, she popped each off its stem with tongue and lips, sighing each time before she swallowed. I could spend the rest of my life just watching Jessica eat cherries.
I gestured toward the stainless steel trough holding the cocktail fruit. "There're plenty more, Jess. Help yourself."
Her smile was worth a million bucks. She took a long swallow from her drink and reached for more cherries.
"Feeling better?" I asked.
"Yeah, a little bit. Thanks, Joe."
"Jessie, it ain't none of my business, but you've got to know that Krista isn't a stay-at-home girl. You're just letting yourself get hurt."
"Don't you think I know that? Why does she always do this to me? I thought she was going to stay put this time. I mean, she did. We were together a whole month straight. Then one morning I wake up all alone. She doesn't even leave a note, or call. She just vanishes. She's been gone two weeks now."
"Yeah, but it's not the first time, Jess. You know what Krista's like. She feels pinned down to one spot she takes to the road. She'll be back, but she won't change."
Jessica gulped another swallow from her drink. "I don't get it," she said, shaking her red-blonde curls. "I don't understand her. God, she breaks my heart."
She must have caught my smile. "What?" she said.
"Nothing, Jess." I replied at first. "Well, I guess I've always heard straight girls complain about how they don't understand guys. I talk to girls like you and they complain they don't understand girls. You know, I don't think anyone understands anybody. So you just pay to dance and take your chances."
"Yeah," she smiled. "Damn it, though. It hurts like hell."
"Jessie, you just have to understand about Krista, or you're going to keep getting hurt. She's a great girl, but she's a loner."
"I know, Joe. You're right. You're always right. But what the fuck am I going to do? I love her."
"Yeah. Well, I can treat that ailment, but I can't cure it. How about a refill?"
She nodded and reached for her purse.
"Put that away," I ordered. "It's on the house - the Broken Heart special."
"Damn, the way my life's been going, I'll be able to drink free forever."
"Uh-huh. So you better get happy before I go broke."
She laughed then, a full-blown laugh. It sounded good.
My attention was diverted to the other end of the bar. Marigold was having words with a customer, a squat butch I knew as Bobbie. I topped off Jessica's drink and stepped toward the commotion. As I drew nearer I heard Mari declare, "I wouldn't fuck you with your father's dick."
"Whoa," I said, "What's going on?"
"I just asked your prissy bitch for a date, that's all," Bobbie sneered. "I guess I don't meet her standards. What, you don't think you smell like cunt?"
"How would you like your head shoved up your cunt," Marigold snarled back. "Then you could smell yourself."
"Okay, cut it out," I ordered.
"I will when this bull-fuck leaves me alone," Mari demanded.
I turned to Bobbie. "Hey, Bobbie, let me buy you another beer, okay? But, you gotta understand, no means no. Mari's not interested. There are plenty of other ladies here tonight."
"Uh-uh," Bobbie said, pointing each hand like a pair of pistols at Mari's chest. "I want those."
"They're not available," I said.
"Damn fucking straight, they're not available - to you!" Mari hissed.
Bobbie looked at me. "She giving it up to you then? That why you run a dyke bar? You got some fantasy that you can 'turn 'em'?"
"Bobbie," I said, leaning into her. "Don't come into my place with a chip on your shoulder, cause I'll toss you out on your trucker's wallet. You want to act nice, that offer for a free beer still holds. Otherwise, take yourself outside."
Bobbie glared at me with cold, flat eyes.
"What are you doing here anyway?" I pressed. "Isn't The Thorn more your kinda hangout?"
Bobbie slid back off the stool, glared at Mari and yanked at her crotch. She spun around and left.
"Fuckin' toad," Mari said.
"I think we just got a subtle message from Callie Sauer," I said. "Keep an eye out for any strangers, especially any who look like they're out for trouble."
"No sweat, boss. Just let me kick their fucking asses, they won't come around no ..."
"Mari, for crissakes. You spot them, you let me know. I don't want to start a brawl, that's just what Callie wants."
I turned to walk back to Jessica, but she was gone. Scanning the room I spotted why. She and Krista were together in a booth. Jess was doing all the talking while Krista just sat expressionless.
Krista got up and walked to the bar. Her short brown hair was just a bit scruffier than usual and her leather vest opened like a pair of saloon doors around her t-shirt that strained to contain her breasts. Her hips rolled in a nonchalant sway. Her eyes were flat brown, but her lips formed a demure pout that hinted at a take-no-prisoners sexuality.
"Hey, K, where you been?"
"Aw, just taking care of ... my ... business," she replied, never changing her poker expression. "Give me a Heineken, and a ..."
"Yeah. And toss in ..."
A little smile screwed its way onto Krista's face. "So, you two been talking about me?"
"A bit. Jessie was kinda hurting when she came in."
"Yeah, well, that's they way it goes."
"I told her not to expect you to change, K."
"You did, huh? Shit, I ain't going to either, so I guess I'm just gonna keep on hurting her."
"Ever think about just ending it?" I said, handing her the drink and the beer.
Krista took a deep breath. "Yeah, I think about it all the time. I should. I wish I didn't love her."
I caught just a glimmer of tear welling in Krista's eye before she said, "Thanks," and walked back to Jessica.
I looked back down the bar. Mari was having another animated conversation with a girl I didn't recognize. She was cute. Dark hair. She was holding a large brown envelope.
I moseyed toward them. This time, though, it was Mari making the move, but the customer wasn't interested. In fact, she was a fish out of water.
"Look," the girl said. "I'm just here to see Mr. Conarski. I don't want a drink, I don't want a date. I just want to get outta here."
Mari was tapping her finger on the bar and about to unleash some oath when I sidled her out of the way.
"Hi, I'm Joe Canarski. Are you from Flynn's?"
"Yeah, Candy Toretelli. I've got some papers for you. Just dropping them off is all."
"That's okay, Candy. Can I get you a drink? First one's on the house."
Candy looked to her left, her right, then straight at Mari. "No thanks, gotta run."
She jumped off the stool and made tracks toward the door. I turned to Mari and laughed, "Scared straight."
Mari stuck her tongue out at me.
I was about to bring the envelope to the office when I spotted them slow dancing. The brunette I recognized, Misty McNeil. But I didn't know the blonde. She was tall, long shining hair reached almost to her hips, which rolled like they were set on ball bearings. Her sleek, white-sequined cocktail dress was slit high up one side giving ample view of a wonderfully long leg. Misty was nearly as tall and sinuous and together they coiled around each other like mating pythons. I couldn't keep my eyes off them, and neither could the rest of the room. They danced to Peggy Lee's "Is that All There Is."
They breathed into each other's necks, lightly kissing and licking the small hollows along their collarbones. Every so often they would seal their mouths with tongue-teasing kisses. My dick was beginning to leak like an old faucet.
Misty slid her hands down the blonde's open back and her partner shivered slightly. Then her hand slid around the blonde's apple buns and began their slow return journey. The blonde reciprocated. Mari's incessant tapping of her nails on the bar interrupted my reverie, but she too was entranced.
The song ended and the pair kissed passionately to the applause of the entire room.
I practically limped back to the office with the raging hard-on I now had. I closed the door behind me and was about to tear open my pants and administer myself some relief. Instead I looked at the picture of Aunt Judy on the wall. She seemed to be smiling wryly.
"Damn it, Aunt Judy," I prayed. "I don't think I can take much more of this."
I took some deep breaths, then laid the envelope on my desk. Flynn told me the contents would keep Callie Sauer at bay. I guess The Magic Lesbian and I were in it for the long haul.
© 2001 by R.E. Buckley Not to be reproduced without permission of the author.
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