My Cousin, My Lover
submitted October 27, 1997
My cousin Jimmy and I fought a lot as kids. And often when we did, I'd go off and wouldn't speak to him again for days. I don't remember what it was we fought over, only that Jimmy always got the best of me and boasted about it to everyone around watching.
Later, as an 18 year old, and he a 19 year old (he'd been held back a grade in grammar school, we got into a terrible fight and I ended up going to the school's nurse. It was the first time I had really gotten hurt.
She made me lie down on a cot in her office and I fell asleep. When I woke up, Jimmy was seated next to me and he was crying.
"If we could get things back to the way they were, I promise I'll never hurt you again," he sobbed.
That was the first time I saw my cousin as someone who genuinely cared about me. When we finally sat down together to sort out our differences, it was hard for us to remember just what our differences were. That brought tears to Jimmy's eyes. And mine, too, when he felt the need to reach out and hug me.
That hug and my reaction to it fueled attraction while it closed the gap between us that we thought was unbridgeable. A great many more hugs followed. My reactions must have translated into a sexual language because the hugs lasted longer and his hands began to have a life of their own.
One night at his house, I lay across his lap enjoying our closeness when his parents came in through the front door. I left Jimmy and the sofa we were on like a shot and waited in the kitchen. Jimmy found me trembling. Grinning, he gripped the sides of my face to hold me and then kissed me full on the lips. As his arms moved around me, I felt suddenly lightheaded and tingly all over.
"Wait," I heard him breathe, and then there was the kitchen table at the small of my back. He pressed me backwards to lie upon it, his mouth against my throat now. His mouth had a life of its own. I squealed in delight.
"Shhh!" he shushed me. "You want to get us killed?"
He would go no further, he said, until it looked like we were "safe."
"When will that be?" I had to know.
"When we have our high school diplomas in our hot little hands," he said. "We won't have to be afraid anymore."
We had our high school diplomas, but we weren't safe just yet, he said. And then he started talking about us going to college together and sharing an apartment.
"Our business will be our own once we get our own place," he said.
Jimmy shaped my thoughts about college, our future together, even our lovemaking. He entered me and surged ahead. Every cell of me came alive and danced in rhythm with his thrusts. We more than made up for lost time, we made the concerns of the rest of the world seem unimportant.
I'll always remember the look of sweaty wonder he gave me just before he came. And the awe I felt watching him. I lost myself forever watching him.
The doorbell rang. Giggling, he took my feet back up to his shoulders.
"Never mind the doorbell," he whispered. "Nobody's going to stop us now."