“I’m happy for you,” Leo whispered against my skin, trailing a line of kisses across my clavicle. It was Saturday night and we were in my bed.
“Hm?” I asked. “Why’s that?”
It was late; I was just teetering on the precipice of sleep, a little drunk and otherwise exhausted. Oh top of having a long week, my apartment was packed: Pup’s and my roommate’s boyfriend hanging around and planning to sleep over, Leo was spending the night. Prior, he and I had taken a long hike and had a really nice dinner together, all accompanied by one of those vast, all-day kinds of conversations I love. We’d returned to my place to join Pup, our roommate, her boyfriend and another friend of ours for a silly night of boardgames and beers. He’s met my friends a few times before – and he and Pup get along famously – so the entire evening was an absolute blast. We’d all had a bit too much to drink, so Pup opted for the pullout couch (honestly, a poly lifesaver and one of our best investments, it’s more comfortable than our actual bed) and Leo and I took the bedroom.
“Your news. I’ve been thinking about it tonight,” he explained. “I’m happy for you, but I’ve decided I’m allowed to be sad.”
I’d been saving up the news that I am moving to a new city with Pup in six months for when I saw him in person. Though I’ve been slowly but enthusiastically getting around to sharing the news with people close to me, I noticed that this was the first time I actually felt a little twinge of melancholy in relating it. It was bittersweet. I’ve been a bit too busy to update you all on my life, but things have been going really, really well for us.
“I feel the same way about myself,” I admitted. “If that makes any sense.”
That night, I’d looked around my tiny kitchen and saw, packed in around our little table, a cohort of some of the most important people to me. And I realized that, four years ago, I didn’t know any of them.
In one of my favorite songs of his, David Bowie sings: “My brain hurt like a warehouse, it had no room to spare/I had to cram so many things to store everything in there.” It’s a sentiment I’ve felt a lot lately, in taking into account the four years I’ve spent in this city. For as excited I am to move onto this new phase and the opportunities it holds, I have often become overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of the little life I’ve created for myself here. So much of my life here is no longer comprised of the things I brought with me when I first moved to this city.
“I never knew I’d need so many people,” Bowie laments a few lines later, and I absolutely get it. Because, fuck, I am going to really miss all of this.
Me: Do you have lunch plans?
Coworker Friend Aware of My Lifestyle: Meeting up with some old friends. You should come join us.
Me: I wouldn’t want to step in on your plans.
Coworker Friend: Nah, it’s just going to be us and a ton of dudes. Totally your thing.
So okay Pup’s spending the night at his other partner’s tonight but that means I get to share the bed with his dog so as far as I’m concerned I’m really getting the better end of this deal.
That night, we all went back to my place and fell asleep in my bed. By we all, I mean Pup, Saltine and I.
In the morning, we sort of ended up lazily touching each other, which turned into us all kissing and, well.
When I contacted Sir and checked that it was okay if I fucked Saltine, he replied with “sure but I thought you thought they were obnoxious.”
Which yes but SORRY sometimes I can’t help myself. So we fucked around until we got hungry, and I walked into my kitchen to make breakfast. I could see through the doorway Pup still fucking Saltine in my bed, and it tapped into some weird mix of compersion and my mild mild mild cucking fantasy that made the encounter both sweet and hot.
Afterwards, I ended up back in bed with them, Pup fucking me while Saltine watched. “I’m jealous,” Saltine said, and I thought they meant of me until they added, “I want to fuck her like that, Daddy.” (Yeah, Saltine and Pup had a tiny bit of a Daddy/little dynamic.)
I felt myself blushing as Pup pushed my face into my pillow. “You want them to fuck you?”
“M…maybe one day,” I stammered out. But I realized after Pup punished me for sassing him by pulling out and slapping my pussy, and Saltine got mean and told him he should do it again that yeah, okay, maybe I wanted to fuck this person sometime.
While I was coming down, I realized that the girl with the cute butt getting tied up and spanked was the friend I came with. Yeah, the friend who almost didn’t come and said she was just going to watch. I was insanely proud.
When she was finished, we went and sat down on the couches to talk about it. And though I was trying to be attentive and supportive, I couldn’t help but keep glancing over to watch Pup and Saltine. Particularly, Saltine.
Like I’ve said, I’d never been interested in Saltine before. Saltine was, in my opinion, too young – yes, nineteen is too young for me – and I found them a little naive and, yeah, kind of obnoxious. But I don’t know. They were gorgeous. They had a cute, fit body. And the qualities about them that previously annoyed me or made me jealous were suddenly becoming really attractive.
As I’ve said before, Saltine was eighteen years old when I met them. And as I’ve said before, I don’t like to date people that young.
I had genuinely no problem with Pup going out with them, but I had zero intentions of getting involved. I found Saltine pretty childish in the few interactions I had with them, in the way that I was when I was their age. Precocious but still young, too smart for their own good. So, on the one hand, I could relate, but on the other I was like ok mama has no time to get mixed up with this child.
After Pup and Saltine hooked up, I ran into Saltine at a munch. I had been perfectly prepared to be cordial. I was happy Pup was getting out there since his breakup, and I was glad things were going well.
But Saltine came on super strong, in a way that was so blunt it was alarming. When they’d walked away, my friend said kiddo needed to chill out. I had to agree.
However, Saltine most definitely did not chill out. And Pup, kind of new to the practice of dating two individuals and calling neither one of them a primary, was not yet accustomed to setting boundaries. So the night I came over to meet Pup’s good friend, guess who was already at his house and on his couch: Saltine.
I shouldn’t have felt entitled to anything, but I did. I’d seen Pup through a pretty big breakup. We’d been seeing each other for almost five months at that point. And then there was just this person traipsing in for what my traditional little brain had categorized as a pretty big milestone: meeting the best friend.
So I was annoyed, but I thought if I vocalized that I’d come across as thewet blanket or selfish. Especially with Saltine being so down for stuff. They’d been interested in hooking up with me, and I had not returned that interest. They were clearly easier to deal with on paper: down for threesomes, down with hanging out all together like this. I needed time. I needed fair warning. If I was going to show up somewhere and Saltine was going to be there, I needed to know ahead of time. Saltine proably didn’t need that.
And so intestead of taking care of myself and asking Pup to talk in the next room, I decided to turn on way too much shade and basically ignore Saltine. I just spoke directly to Pup’s friend, and after his friend had left, I whipped out a book from my bag and started reading it on the couch rather than attempting to engage Saltine in any kind of conversation.
To make matters only worse, there was a play party coming up. I lived a convenient distance from the venue, and so Saltine asked if we could all go to my place after and just sleep over. I also had, as it turned out, the biggest bed.
Dumbfounded and not wanting to be the partypooper, I agreed. But internally I was kicking myself like mother of fuck what did I just agree to.
Eventually, and I honestly do not know how it happened, but Pup and Saltine wound up on the couch with my while I started reading. And then Saltine ended up taking Pup’s cock out or maybe Pup just took his cock out? I genuinely do not remember. But basically the two of them were pretty hot and bothered and bursting with new relationship energy and I was like
Bottom line, I should have been assertive. But I wasn’t. And instead of even just asking them to stop or going home, I told them to keep going and that I didn’t want to ruin their fun. Which was totally stupid on my part, but I was pretty insecure abut the whole thing. Saltine was young and hot and exciting, down for just about anything. I didn’t want to be the boring one. It’s hard not to feel like everything is going to be a comparison.
So I literally gave the okay to them having sex while I was there. And it was so weird. Because I was essentially this dog:
It wasn’t until the next day until all the feelings came flooding to the surface and I found words for them. And I ended up texting Pup novel after novel of upset and anger and outrage. Saltine was not sleeping at my house, I said. And if Saltine was at his place when I was coming over, he’d better tell me. How dare the two of them impose upon me like that and make me feel as if I were the eternal partypooper if I didn’t go along with every ridiculous plan or impulse, I’d said. Pup apologized and promised he’d establish better boundaries, though I conceded that I should have articulated my discomfort better.
After that, all that was left was to talk to Saltine. We made a plan for coffee later that week. Naturally, I was freaked out. But more on that later.