The Art of M. J. Rennie



Below, an excerpt from Enter Michaelene:

   At 5:03 PM, they climbed into Patrick’s bug and drove out Rhody Drive to the Harbor Vista overlook. It was private but had a spectacular view of the ocean.

   Once they were parked, Michaelene extracted a vapor pen filled with marijuana from her purse and clicked it five times to activate the heating coil. Patrick had known she was going to do this and had agreed to share it with her. Michaelene inhaled, held it, and exhaled an aromatic blue-grey vapor.

   Patrick took the pen and did the same.

   They passed the pen back and forth several times while they talked about the job, the town, the clients, their co-workers, and the whole Newport beach scene.

   Patrick made jokes and did a number of excellent imitations. His mimicking of the moron Gary Oates was wickedly on mark and Michaelene laughed merrily.

   “Deny, deny, deny!” Patrick shrieked.

   Eventually, the talk got around to their respective love lives. Patrick told Michaelene that he tried hard to make his marriage work, but it just hadn’t panned out.

   “My ex-wife Edwinna claims that I am too easygoing and that I needed to be a more aggressive and more macho kind of guy,” he said, bitterly.

   “With all due deference to your ex-wife,” Michaelene said, “I think you are fine just the way you are. I like a man who is in touch with his feminine feelings and who isn’t all hung up on a lot of foolish macho illusions.”

   “I have few, if any, macho illusions,” Patrick said. He noticed that Michaelene’s eyes, although red-rimmed from the vapor, were an arresting blue, like lapis. Not only that, they were long-lashed and ultra-feminine. In short, they were about the most beautiful eyes he’d ever seen.

   “Really? Few, if any macho illusions? Tell me about it.”

   In some particularly eerie way, Patrick felt like he could say things to Michaelene that he never would have confessed to his ex-wife or even to his girlfriend, Myrtle.

   “You’re the first woman I’ve ever admitted this to,” Patrick said, “and I don’t know why I’m telling you, but my intention is to marry a dominant though loving woman. Someone who will take the initiative, especially regarding sex. I guess I’m saying this because I sense that you might understand.”

   “I do understand,” Michaelene answered, knowing exactly what he meant. Her faint smile slowly expanded. “And I think it’s a wonderful way for a man to be with a woman, if you don’t mind me saying so.”

   “Thanks. I don’t mind at all. Just let me add that I think you are a most fascinating woman, Michaelene, and I’m glad we’ve gotten to know each other during the past week. Your husband Todd is a lucky man.”

   Michaelene nodded, still smiling. From there, they went on to discuss their desired and actual sex lives in graphic detail. Soon Patrick was feeling the relief that comes to a man who is at last able to admit his submissive tendencies to an understanding and experienced woman.

   And that woman was not just any woman, but the exquisitely beautiful Michaelene.

   She in turn outlined what an ideal husband’s role in marriage ought to be, leaving no doubt as to what kind of marriage she presently had with Todd. This highly aroused Patrick.

   Despite the steamy nature of the conversation they conducted that fateful Friday, their parting two hours later concluded with a chaste handshake.