Image by the fabulous STuart F Taylor

This post is part of a series of emotional fucks – I asked people on Twitter to give me different atmospheres/types of fuck and then used each as the basis for some erotic fiction. I’ve done revenge fuck, spite fuck and principle fuck, this one’s about a grief fuck. Two people try to conjure the fun they had with a friend before he died.

This moping about and weeping isn’t what he would have wanted, both of us can agree on that. He was a friend, and a lover, and a kind and gentle man, but first and foremost he was the life and soul of the party. But no matter how much we talk about ‘celebrating a life’, it’s impossible to summon an atmosphere of celebration when someone you love has just been ripped away.

The gaping ache in my chest has genuine physical force – pulling me away from people, away from love, away from parties and happiness. All I want to do is sit here on the sofa, in a darkened room, with the only other person who feels that pull like I do.

We were three, and now we are two, and never has ‘one’ seemed like such a huge number. Just one. One whole person, who was here two weeks ago. I can still smell him in the air. Can still almost hear his ringing laugh. Yesterday, Abe was making toast in the kitchen and he burnt it, like Dan always used to. The peal of the smoke alarm sent my heart racing up to my throat. “He’s back!” I thought, ludicrously. As if he could be summoned with two rounds of burnt toast and a flapping tea towel.

Abe and I sit curled together on the sofa, taking it in turns to weep. Take turns to tell stories about him. Greedily hoarding the experiences that we had together, just the three of us. The ones we couldn’t say out loud to the people who offered their condolences.

The night he turned up at our house with a brand new strain of weed, and glow-in-the-dark stickers to put on the ceiling of the living room. We dragged a mattress onto the floor and lay in a big, warm pile of flesh staring up at constellations he invented just for us. The three-antlered deer, which began life as a unicorn. ‘The Plough’ for me, because I was proud I could remember the right shape of it. ‘Orion’s cock and balls’, because the boys wanted to mock me for taking it far too seriously. The word ‘FUCK’ because fuck it: we were stoned.

We talk about this night, and more. The evenings which had started as a ‘quick pint’ and ended with Dan helping us wriggle through a window to gatecrash someone’s house party. His obsession with cramming as much happiness into each moment. The way he’d hug you so fiercely if you told him you were sad, like he wanted to squeeze the misery out of your veins. How if you spent too long scrolling blankly through your phone screen, he’d tap you on the shoulder and bark ‘life’s happening! Last chance to get-the-fuck-ON-with-it!’ and drag you out into the sunshine.

We reminisce about the first time he kissed me, with Abe urging him on. The first time Abe kissed him – tentatively, as if worried he’d be pushed away and even more worried he’d be pulled in closer.

The night I took it in turns to use each of them. Abe stark naked and painted with lipstick, Dan in a collar, preening like a kitten and meowing every time my strokes got closer to his nipples. Ridiculous and sexy in exactly equal parts.

We had fun, the three of us. We had fun.

After parties, when he’d given his public energy to others, he’d visit us for the rest between raves. We were his home. He could rely on us – let his guard down. We were soft skin and four-handed massages and facial expressions he didn’t have to filter through a lens of ‘what looks cool?’ Companionship that didn’t need words, just strokes and love and smiling.

And both of our tongues on his cock.

No, Abe and I creating this miserable pity-pile is definitely not what he’d want. If he were here he’d tease us for being ‘glum fuckers.’ He’d yank open the curtains and turn on the lights, put trashy music on the stereo and point out ‘LIFE IS HAPPENING!’

Abe and I look at each other with red-rimmed eyes, knowing what the other one’s thinking, willing each other to make the first move. We want to give each other the kind of strength that Dan gave, but we’re not yet sure how to do it.

Abe moves first.

“Last chance!” he shouts, as he leaps off the sofa. “Last chance to get-the-fuck-ON with it!”

I leap up too.

“Life’s happening!” I tell him. Then after a pause: “And if fucking Dan can’t be bothered to join us, we’ll have to get started right now.”

I don’t expect him to laugh at this – it’s too soon, too raw – but he does.

“Fucking Dan,” he agrees, the way Dan would have wanted. “Fuck that guy.”

We bound up the stairs together and into Dan’s ‘room’ – not really his room as such, but the boarded-out attic where he used to drag us to smoke. It has one big Velux window that opens onto the night sky, and occasionally you can pick out a star or two through the choking smog of East London.

“Let’s see what that bastard’s left us, eh?” Abe says, and we both start ransacking the room.

We rifle through the pizza boxes and duvets and old condom wrappers for so long that I can feel this initial hit of levity wearing off. I claw desperately at the shit strewn around the floor, shaking and starting to panic as I worry what will happen if we can’t find what we want. I stumble on a cheap speaker, still plugged into the spaghetti of wires that made up Dan’s ‘desk’ which will do for now. I punch ‘on’ and jab ‘play’ on a track list we know well, flicking urgent glances at Abe as he continues the main treasure hunt.

The music kicks in, muted and yet jarring at the same time. It sounds wrong. Like the acoustics of the room are missing a third body to balance out the sound. My throat starts to close and I almost croak ‘stop’, because it’s coming now: the next wave of grief that I know for sure will sink me.

Then finally, just before it crashes, Abe comes up grinning.

“Success!” he declares, looking as relieved as I am.

In his hand is a small plastic pouch, half-filled with yellow-white crystals that will taste like nights spent with Dan. I reach for them greedily, practically choking with gratitude and hope and love and grief.

I crush them then pour generous heaps into the centre of two paper squares, pausing three times to stop and sniff – that sickly-sweet chemical smell that was the prelude to most of the love we shared between the three of us. Abe does the same, then licks my fingers – sucking the bitter residue off like there’s traces of Dan in each grain.

And then we fuck.

We don’t wait till we’re high – Dan never waited. Dan wanted everything now – more, better, harder, faster, now now now now now. I can sense him in this room, sitting in the corner tapping his hands on the wooden floor in time to the music that’s only just beginning to sound real.

“Come ON, guys. Get the fuck ON with it. LIFE’S HAPPENING.” Big grin. “Life. Is. Happening.”

Life is happening, now. Abe kisses me with teenage joy, then urgency, then lust. He holds my head in both hands, the way he used to do with Dan. He grips me by the hair and slowly stands up, dragging me with him to dance as I playfully feign reluctance.

I press myself against him and he changes – swells. Becomes bolder and taller and more graceful – all swishy hips and crotch grinding and hands that touch me everywhere. Sultry smiles and one raised eyebrow and grippy, grabby caresses. He whispers in my ear “come ON” and “fucker.”

He’s being Dan, for me, because Dan can’t be.

And it aches and aches and aches, but it’s happening.

I step back from Abe and try to lean nonchalantly on the bookshelf. I tap the wood with my fingertips and say “Cute, aren’t you?” I smile lopsidedly and blow him a kiss. “You know how much you want it, you glum fuck.”

From his eyes I can tell that he aches the same way I do. So he takes me the way he’d take Dan. All wrestling and deep kisses and bites that dip just through the surface of pleasure and into pain. He throws me to the floor onto the pile of quilts and grips my shoulders with his hands, rough and brutal, like Dan did. If I concentrate I can see us from the outside – rolling and fighting and fucking with a puppyish joy.

We take turns to be Dan for each other: first me taunting him at the bookshelf, then him rolling me over and over in the nest of Dan-scented cushions. Next: me. I slide down his body and look up at him with glittering eyes and ask “Want me to suck your cock, fucker? Is that what you want?”

And he laughs at me, at Dan, then nods. His cock is smooth and straight and beating with life.

I remember the first time Dan did this for him, and Abe came in his mouth in an almost instant rush – twitching and quick and ecstatic, then so swiftly awash with guilt and uncertainty. I remember the way that Dan ruffled his hair, crooned “cute, aren’t you?” through a mouthful of spunk, and then turned to me with a wet, sticky grin.

No time, you see. He had no time for self-pity or regret or melancholy or guilt. Especially guilt about pleasure because life was happening. Right now. And so we’d better all make ‘right now’ as fun as we could.

Once Abe had come in his mouth, while he was still uncertain how to feel, Dan turned to me and licked salty streaks onto my naked tits. He looked up into my face with dark, mischievous eyes and asked if I wanted to show them both how it was done. Then Abe held my hair back as I sucked Dan’s cock, and they kissed and made up while I swallowed him.

Four hands on my head, cradling and stroking me as I teased pleasure out of this man who was all about pleasure. The noise that he made in the back of his throat was more precious for it being his.

Back in this moment right here, I fuck Abe and he fucks me, and we sweat and swear and giggle and wrestle and lick each other’s nipples and smack flat palms against each other’s flesh. We moan and we grunt and we weep, but more often we laugh at each other, and the idiocy that thinks it can conjure Dan back with a bag of drugs and an old playlist and some truly terrible acting.

As we come together, the sparkling memories of Dan pop around us like bubbles in champagne. We don’t stop moving, even when we’re done: we grind and touch and kiss and lick sweat from each other’s necks. We throb in time to the music, and feel the pleasure tingling across the conductive, electric wetness of our fingertips.

We look into each other’s eyes, and the room flickers like a zoetrope. If I look closely I can see Dan flashing into certain frames. Here, smiling as he bites Abe’s neck. There, leaning nonchalantly against the bookcase. Reflected in Abe’s eyes and in the mirror and the window. Thumping through the music. Zipping across the surface of my skin.

He’s not here, and he never will be, but we rush towards euphoria anyway.

Because Dan is dead but life – life is happening.

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