Could it Be Magic?

I’m thinking about sex magic yet again. I think about sex magic a lot, actually. I’m always struggling to get my head around why sex is magic, why human sexuality defies the nature programme /Animal Planet biological tagging that seems to work for other species that populate the planet. I don’t think I could write sex without magic, and even if I could I wouldn’t want to. I’m not talking about airy-fairy or woo-woo so much as the mystery that is sex. On a biological level we get it. We’ve gotten it for a long time. We know all about baby-making and the sharing of the genes and the next generation. It’s text book.

 

But it’s the ravenousness of the human animal that shocks us, surprises us, turns us on in ways that we didn’t see coming. It’s the nearly out of body experience we have when we are the deepest into our body we can possibly be. It’s the skin on skin intimacy with another human being in a world where more personal space is always in demand.

 

When we come together with another human being, for a brief moment, our worlds entwine in ways that defy description. We do it for the intimacy of it, the pleasure of it, the naughtiness of it, the dark animal possessiveness of it. Sex is the barely acceptable disturbance in the regimented scrubbed-up proper world of a species that has evolved to have sex for reasons other than procreation. Is that magical? It certainly seems impractical. And yet we can’t get enough.

 

We touch each other because it feels good. We slip inside each other because it’s an intimate act that scratches an itch nothing else can scratch. During sex, we are ensconced in the mindless present, by the driving force of our individual needs, needs that we could easily satisfy alone, but it wouldn’t be the same. Add love to the mix, add a little bit of romance, add a little bit of chemistry and the magic soup thickens and heats up and gets complicated. I don’t think it’s any surprise at all that sex is a prime ingredient in story. But at the same time, I don’t think it’s any surprise that it is also an ingredient much avoided in some story.

 

Sex is a power center of the human experience. It’s not stable. It’s not safe. It’s volatile. It’s complicated. It exposes people, makes them vulnerable, reduces them to their lowest common denominator even as it raises them to the level of the divine. Is it any wonder the gods co
vet flesh? The powerful fragility of human flesh is the ability to interact with the world around us, the ability to interact with each other, the ability to penetrate and be penetrated.

So as I mull through it, trying for the zillionth time to get my head around it, I conclude – at least for the moment – that the true magic of sex is that it takes place in the flesh, and it elevates the flesh to something even the gods lust after. It’s a total in-the-body, in-the-moment experience, a celebration of the carnal, the ultimate penetrative act of intimacy of the human animal. I don’t know if that gives you goose bumps, but it certainly does me.

 

Doing the Gingerbread Man

And now that you’ve had your sweet romantic Christmas tale in The Matchmaker, I though it was time for dessert with some seriously filthy holiday fiction.

First of all, let me say that I absolutely adore gingerbread! I love it any time of year, but I especially love it during the holidays. I wrote Doing the Gingerbread Man last year for Christmas when I hunted all over Guildford for some gingerbread, ginger cake, ginger anything, with no success. I even thought to bake my own gingerbread but alas, I couldn’t even find ground ginger in the grocery stores. That is how this filthy little holiday ditty came to be. Not one to be deterred, I decided to be a little more creative and make my gingerbread man fictional. I didn’t need ground ginger for that.

My gingerbread man turned out to be so deliciously filthy and decadent, that I decided to invite you over again to partake. The story is short, very sweet, and complete. It’s gluten free, dairy free, even calorie free, but oh so very naughty. Enjoy!

BTW, I did find some totally delicious ginger cake this year in the local farmers market.

 

 

Doing the Gingerbread Man

It might have been too much mulled wine, or perhaps a sugar high from eating damn near as much of my holiday baking as I … well as I baked. It might have been just a longing for a little bit of that holiday magic I remembered from my childhood. Whatever it was, on a whim, I decided to bake gingerbread men. I mean why should kids have all the fun. I was alone over the holiday and I had decided that I was going to make the best of it, that I was not going to feel sorry for myself. I was going to have a good time if it killed me, and that good time involved making, decorating, and eating gingerbread men.

The recipe I found online not only promised that my ginger bread men would be tasty, but that they would also be chewy. My mouth watered at the thought. I had all the ingredients, and in my cupboard I found red hots for buttons, dried cranberries for lips and slivered almonds for eyes, plus I had several tubes of icing in primary colors all ready and waiting to spiff up those men when I took them out of the oven.

The recipe was supposed to make sixteen gingerbread people – gender of your own choosing, but I never was great at following a recipe. I reckon they’re just guidelines anyway. Instead of the requisite sixteen biscuit boys, I opted for one giant, macho, gingerbread man, one that would fill the entire cookie sheet. By the time I had the dough mixed up, I’d switched from mulled wine to Prosecco. Truth be told, most ginger bread men were entirely too unmanly for my taste. I intended to create a testosterone charged, hunk of a gingerbread man, one that would seriously make my mouth water and give me something to wrap my lips around. I wanted my big GBM – something that size had to have a name — to have bulging biceps. I’m a commercial artist by trade because it pays the bills, but I’m artsy fartsy by nature, and well-shaped biceps and decent pecs and abs sculpted from liberally-sampled ginger cookie dough were not beyond my artistic abilities. Strangely enough the more Prosecco I sipped, the more creative I became. In no time at all I decided GBM didn’t need red hots for buttons because GBM wasn’t going to wear a shirt. I was having visions of Magic Mike by the time I got down to GBM’s trousers. I had plans for a little blue frosting thong with just enough pouch to cover GBM’s junk. But then I decided maybe I didn’t want said junk covered. After all this was a private performance for an audience of one. “It’ll be much easier for me to eat you and taste your yummy gingery goodness without frosting,” I said to my creation. “Besides who needs all those extra calories?” I could almost swear I heard a low throaty moan, but then more than likely it was my own. I raised my glass to my buffed biscuit boy feeling a bit like Dr. Frankenstein in her laboratory as I polished off the alcohol, rubbed my hands together and went to work on making sure GBM was … um…err … anatomically correct.

When a girl has her hands on a man’s cock, and she gets the feel for it, the shape of it, the way it responds to her touch, well how can she not get a little wet, a little squirmy, a little hot and bothered, and who would have thought that was true even with a gingerbread cock? I’ll admit I took time out from my efforts for a little browsing of the internet researching just exactly how I wanted GBM’s cock to look, making him wait on the table unformed and unfulfilled while I checked out schlongs online. I decided to go for heavy, somewhere in between flaccid and semi, resting languidly against GBM’s golden tan belly so as not to obscure the view of his weighty balls.

I remember as a little girl secretly pretending that my Barbie and Ken were fucking, even though poor Ken didn’t have the equipment for the job. I only ever did that when my rather conservative mother wasn’t home, and even then I felt guilty. Not tonight though! Tonight I felt empowered. Tonight was all about indulgence, all about my fucking pleasure, and here I was making it up to poor Ken by creating right proper, and proportionately substantial, bits for GBM, shaped to suit my very active fantasy life. For a long time now, my sex life had been solo, so my fantasies tended to be doozies. That meant I saw and heard sexual innuendo everywhere in everything, and eating a hot gingerbread man was just too delicious not to fantasize about.

When I finally got down to serious hands-on with GBM’s meat and two veg, my buzz was way more than alcoholic. I was the queen, I was the creator, the dominatrix, I was GBM’s goddess and he lay before me passive and obedient to my will. And then the true artist in me came out. In my imagination, the feel of a cock became almost tactile. I imagined a man asleep not yet aroused to my touch. I imagined sliding close to him, under the blankets, all naked and needing, needing the feel of maleness — of maleness needing me back. In my mind’s eye, I traced the silken smoothness of hard growing beneath soft. I cupped the weighty sac, slightly cooler to the touch, full and tight, resting in my hand. My mouth watered anticipating the taste of maleness, ginger and spice and everything nice, everything so fucking nice.

“Run, run, as fast as you can. You can’t catch me, I’m the gingerbread man.”

“Oh trust me, my little humunculous, you don’t want to run from me, not when I have your cock in my hand. Oh yes, I can see that smile on your face. You can’t fool me. I know what you want, and when I’ve made it so hot you can’t stand it, I’m going to eat you.”

I would have considered taking a break to tuck my set of shiny love balls up inside me, to jiggle and tease me while I worked on my creation, but I couldn’t leave him alone in such an unsatisfied state. Instead I stood at the counter hunched over his prone body, shifting from foot to foot, pressing my thighs together. The heady smell of ginger and heat flaring my nostrils and filling my mouth with saliva as I touched and fondled and formed the cock of my dreams. Lust heated the kitchen far more than the oven did. Sweat trickled down my spine, and thoughts of Pygmalion, in love with his own creation, thoughts of breathing life into grain and spice, leavening and oil connected me to an age old story of wanting, needing to create something to love, something that would love me back, something that I knew intimately because I had touched him as no one else had or ever would. Even in my state of arousal, my state of need, I found myself waxing all Biblical to GBM, with my slightly enebriated, more than a little bit self-centered version of Psalm 139.

 

For I created your inmost being;

I knit you together on my kitchen counter.

 You are fearfully and wonderfully made,

Even if I do say so myself

 

In the heat, I had shed my shirt and jeans, standing before my man in my red Christmas knickers and bra with a sprig of mistletoe in my damp hair, anticipating some serious mouth action when GBM was complete. At last, pleased with the shape of him, I got down on my knees and tuck him on his non-stick surface into the oven raising my arms to the heavens as I shut the oven door and steamed the glass all but shouting, “live, damn you! Live!”

Okay, now I know this sounds insane, but the second I did that, there was a flash of lightning and the electricity buzzed popped and crackled, and then went out, leaving me in the dark with GBM in his super-heated prison. But never fear, my oven is gas, and while I lay half naked curled on my side with my fingers in my panties, GBM got hotter and hotter and more and more ready, and I swear, his cock got bigger and bigger. Okay, yes, I know that’s the result of baking soda, but you gotta remember, I was in an altered state, I was just this side of Nirvana, I was having a religious experience.

Perhaps I passed out. Perhaps I really was temporarily traipsing around Nirvana. I had to be dreaming, though, because when the lights came back on the oven door burst open and wow! GBM crawled out all bronze and rippling and fully grown. Some parts of him were way more fully grown than others. And what do you think? The first words out of his mouth were, “I want to eat you, my lady, and then I’m going to fuck you.”

I always figured I’d be a beneficent creator, so I laid back in front of the oven and let GBM open my legs and run his hot, gingery, very talented tongue all over my juicy landscape. And just when I was writhing and grinding and guiding his ginger head closer to my itch, he pulled away, and I got my first look at that magnificent spicy, bronze cock, raised for the occasion.

The heat of him all but scorched me raw as he shoved his sizzling thickness up inside me and began to hump and thrust, filling the whole kitchen with the spicy, humid scent of sex and ginger – some of it his, but a good bit of it mine. He rode me until I knew I’d have bruises on my ass, and I didn’t care. I wrapped my legs around his floury ribs and met him thrust for thrust, slipping and sliding up and down his well-buttered torso. When I came, he pulled out and straddled me, holding his heavy staff up to my lips. “Eat me. Eat me now,” he said. I barely managed a few delicious licks and sucks down his gingery length before he came in buttery, spicy purts at the back of my throat. “I heard you love cream fillings,” he managed as he exploded again and again until butter and ginger and crème ran down my chin and onto my tits and I sucked and slurped and mewled like a kitten. How could anything taste so good?

“There. That’s better, isn’t it?”

I came to feeling a little singed around the edges and looking up into startling brown eyes. I blinked, not sure but what I was still dreaming, then I blinked again as I took in the total package, looking up into an outdoorsy tanned face with strong cheekbones and a slightly crooked nose that looked as though it might have been broken at one time. There was a full-lipped smile and a dimpled chin and the whole lot was topped off with bed-headed ginger-bronze hair and matching stubble.

“What happened?” I managed through a parched throat.

“You had me really worried there for a minute,” his voice was a toffee rich baritone I could have eaten with a spoon. “I think it was some sort of an electrical surge, or something. I heard it from outside and saw this bright flash of light. When your door was standing open, I feared the worst.”

“I was baking.” I did a quick glance at my oven, then did a double take only to find that the cookie sheet was empty and smoking heavily.

“Mm,” the man said, glancing first at the recipe for gingerbread men on my phone, which now lay on the floor next to me. Then he stood, grabbed a potholder and pulled the empty cookie sheet from the oven with a hearty chuckle. “What happened, did your gingerbread men run away?”

“I guess maybe he did,” I replied, looking around the room, as he offered me his hand and helped me to my feet. “I did threaten to eat him, after all.”

“Him?”

“There was just one. A big one.” It was then that I noticed my state of undress. “Oh god, I’m sorry. It was, well it was really hot in here, so I …”

“It is, hot.” He said, the smile twitching at the corner of his lips as he looked away to give me a little privacy. “Could have been all the heat that caused the electrical surge.”

“I’m sure that was it.” I replied.

“I’m Nick, By the way,” he said, still keeping his eyes averted. “I just moved in next door.”

“Janet,” I replied, zipping my jeans and turning to face him. “Welcome.”

He shot me a quick glance and when he saw that I was decent, he offered his hand. “I was just delivering a little Christmas cheer.” And then he gave me a flirty little grin that made me feel hot all over again. He nodded to the plate of gorgeously perfect gingerbread men setting on the table. “Perhaps these’ll make up for the one that got away.”

“Thank you. I had my mouth set for gingerbread men.” Then I added quickly, “sometimes my imagination runs away with me.” I looked around, half expecting GBM to be peeking out from behind the pantry door. “With the size of the one I made though, I imagine he’d still be gooey in the middle.”

“Gooey in the middle is all right as long as he’s hard where it counts. Oh God, I can’t believe I said that.” He ran a hand through mussed ginger curls.

“Well you can hardly be blamed under the circumstances,” I replied. “What with finding me in my underwear all sprawled on the kitchen floor in front of the oven.”

He looked around. “You don’t suppose he has something sinister in mind, this giant runaway gingerbread man of yours, do you?”

“I did feel a bit like Dr. Frankenstein when I was making him,” I said. “It’s possibly he’s now out on the street running amok.”
“If the villagers all turn up with torches and pitchforks later tonight, we’ll know why,” he said.

“Best be vigilant.” I put on the kettle and nodded him to sit at the flour dusted kitchen table, still wondering what had happened to GBM. “So what do you do for a living, Nick?” I asked.

“I just opened a bakery down the street. While I do seriously delicious cookies and cakes, my specialty is breads.”

“Oh my God,” I dropped into the chair next to him, feeling like I’d just stepped into the Twilight Zone. “You own The Ginger Bread Man?”

He raised his brown eyes to meet my gaze, and a smile split his face. “Yup, that would be me.” He pointed to his hair. “I am the ginger bread man.”

 

 

Matchmaker: FREE read Part 3

Happy Boxing Day to my British friends and family. As promised, here is the final episode of Matchmaker, a little romance of the feathery kind. If you missed the first two episodes, here are the links:

Part One

Part Two

 

Enjoy!

 

Matchmaker Final Episode:

She had left the back door open. How could she have been so careless? No telling what a neurotic African grey might do if left to his own devices. And even though it was warm out in the afternoon sun, the temperature was supposed to drop tonight with even a chance of snow. She had to find the bird now.

She searched the streets in the neighbourhood on foot, the pair of binoculars she’d bought two summers ago for whale watching near Capetown bouncing from side to side around her neck as she walked. She couldn’t lose Ezekiel. Yes, he was all she had left of her friend, but he was more than that. He was a big part of what had drawn her to Ellen in the first place. While it was true, Ellen was the nutty professor who talked to birds, it was Ezekiel who had been even more astounding. Ezekiel was the erudite bird who talked back, who in spite of Ellen’s best intentions, had picked up some rather colorful slang. He was affectionate, he was astute and Mary was convinced he had a wicked sense of humor. And now he was loose on the streets in hostile territory with snow predicted. She had to find him.

She questioned all of her neighbors and called everyone she knew. Unlike the gaudy ring-necked parakeets now populating Kensington Garden and spreading across South England, Ezekiel would not stand out in his dapper grey plumage. At least the ring around his leg would identify him as hers.

The sun was setting as she made a second broader sweep of the area in her car, with still no sign of the bird. He would be roosting soon. She could only hope he found a safe and warm place for the night. Inside the house, she sat on the sofa and stared at the empty cage, eyes blurring at the thought of poor Ezekiel lost and alone in Guildford.

She was thinking of making up “lost” posters when the phone rang.

“Hello?” A velvety male voice filtered into her ear. “Did you by any chance misplace an African grey parrot?”

“Oh, God yes!” She covered her phone and choked back a sob. “Is Ezekiel all right?”
Soft laughter. “Ezekiel, is he? Looks more like Casanova to me.”

“Pardon?”

The laugh again. “He’s flirting shamelessly with Cassandra… Oh, Cassandra’s my African grey.”

Mary’s knees buckled and she dropped heavily onto the sofa. “He’s flirting? Ezekiel is flirting? You have an African grey? Female?”

“That’s why I call her Cassandra. Look, my name’s Don, Don McKenna. Do you have a pen? I’ll give you my address. I’m not sure these two know each other well enough for a sleepover yet.”

Who’d have guessed? Don McKenna lived only a few streets from Mary. Obviously he didn’t frequent the personal ads. He was tall with longish sun bleached hair and a neatly trimmed beard. He wore faded jeans and a navy polo shirt stretched across broad shoulders. His warm smile matched the laugh she’d enjoyed on the telephone. He offered her a firm, slightly calloused handshake.

“Ezekiel and Cassie are in the conservatory.” He motioned her through the small but tidy house and out to the conservatory where the two birds perched next to each other in the flicker fairy lights and evergreen bunting. Ezekiel was preening Cassandra’s neck. It was easy to tell them apart. Ezekiel was a darker shade of grey. When they heard the humans approach, Ezekiel squawked and flew to perch on Mary’s shoulder in a flurry of soft feathers.

“You crazy bird.” She blinked back tears, hoping their host wouldn’t notice how soppy she was. “You didn’t need my help to find a friend, did you?”

He nipped her ear gently then flew back to Cassandra.

Over a cup of mulled wine, she told Don of her ordeal with the no-longer-mourning Ezekiel.

He laughed. “Let me get this right. You placed a personal ad and put up with crazy people and iguanas and pythons just to find a friend for Ezekiel?”

She blushed and nodded.

“Wow! What a matchmaker.”

“What a matchmaker, indeed.”

From the perch he shared with Cassandra, Ezekiel eyed Mary as she sat next to Don on his sofa, the reflection of the
Christmas tree lights now glistening brightly in the darkened windows of the conservatory. She didn’t know whether the bird’s vocabulary included “No need to thank me,” but she was pretty sure that’s what he was thinking.

Don sighed contentedly as the two birds got about a little mutual preening. “This may well be the best Christmas present Cassie’s ever had.” Then he turned his attention back to Mary and raised his wine. “Happy Christmas, Mary.” Then he nodded back to Ezekiel and Cassie. “I have a feeling the New Year’s going to be very exciting.”

 

Matchmaker: FREE Holiday Story Part 2

Merry Christmas to everyone who celebrates and to those who don’t Happy Holidays. As promised, here is the next instalment of Matchmaker, a fun little romantic romp of the feathery kind. It’s squeaky clean, which is not what you usually expect from me, but it is romantic to a fault, which you do expect from me.

If you missed the first episode of Matchmaker, just follow the link.

Whatever you celebrate, I wish you all the best. Enjoy.

 

Matchmaker Part 2

“No, I’m sorry. Yes, the parrot has to be a female. No, a female love bird won’t do.” Mary hung up and crossed another name off her list just as the doorbell rang, and her friend Tessa let herself in.

“Any luck?” Tessa set take-away Chinese and a bottle of chardonnay on the table.

Mary shook her head and began helping her friend unpack dinner. “Six males. The only female I could come up with was some kind of rare mutation. If I want to purchase her as a companion for Ezekiel, I’ll have to marry a billionaire fast. They’re so expensive, and not only that, but what if I find a female, mortgage my life and bring her back here, only to find Ezekiel doesn’t like her? Then I’m stuck with two miserable birds.”

“What about the personal ads?” Tessa spoke around a mouthful of spring roll.

“Ezekiel’s a parrot, in case you’ve forgotten.” Mary passed a grape to the unhappy bird, who had just squawked in her ear. He tossed it up into the air, let it drop, then squawked again.

“Not likely to forget that, am I? But what if you put in an ad for yourself, you know, and include Ezekiel in it?”

“You can’t be serious.”

“Why not? It’s easier than marrying a billionaire.” Tessa grabbed a pen and pad from the counter. “I’ll help you. We can put it out in all the local papers. It won’t cost much and it’ll have a wide area of coverage. Then there’s online dating. We could try there, couldn’t we?” Mary could see where this was leading. Tessa was always trying to fix her up, but even she had to admit, the idea was hare-brained enough that it just might work.

After much haggling and several glasses of wine, they came up with the ad:

 

Seeking companion – M/F. Must have female African grey parrot.

 

Tessa sighed. “Well I’m a bloke fan all the way, but I have to admit by making the ad M/F you’ll get twice the possibilities for Ezekiel, and who knows,” her smile turned wicked, “you and Ezekiel may both find a girl friend.”

“This is not about me, Tess. I’d sleep with the devil himself just for a squawk-free night’s rest. And I want Ezekiel to be happy.”

Much to Mary’s surprise, the responses flooded in. Colin from Reading was anxious to meet her and bring along his Sadie. Since she didn’t want to run the risk of nutters coming to her door, she had arranged to meet Colin at Stoke Park for their first interview. After a short wait, a middle aged man in a rumpled suit approached with a large pet carrier and sat down next to her. “Are you Mary?”

“Are you Colin?”

“I am.”

She shook his hand cautiously, eyes darting to the pet carrier. “Please tell me you didn’t bring Sadie in that?”

“Of course. She loves her walkies, don’t you, sweetheart? Who’s a good girl? Who’s daddy’s good girl?” He opened the carrier and pulled out a scary-arsed snake. “I thought someone who’s kinky enough to have a parrot fetish might just like a little variety. My girl is a ball python. She’s not quite full grown yet, are you sweetie?”

Plenty big enough to give her the shivers, Mary thought as Sadie poked her head out of the cage, that seemed to be way too full of snaky coils for Mary’s liking. “Sadie’s very affectionate,” he said, trying to coax her out. But Sadie was having none of it.

“It’s the middle of December. Are you crazy? It can’t be comfortable for her to be out here.”

“Oh she has a nice warm water bottle. Don’t worry.”

Sadie, however, had no intention of being friends with Mary, and no matter how delightful the young python might be, she was no companion for Ezekiel. Mary wished Colin and Sadie a happy Christmas and headed back home.

 

By the end of another sleepless week, Mary had learned more about the drawbacks of using personal ads to find partners for pets than she’d ever hoped to know, but she was still no closer to easing her feathered friend’s loneliness. Between her efforts to decorate her Christmas tree when she didn’t feel festive at all, she carried on a one-sided conversation with Ezekiel, offering peanuts in the shell, which he cracked open, but only let them drop uneaten to the floor. Then, with the same wood crushing beak, he affectionately preened the hair around her ear. What was she going to do? She’d been offered an iguana, a ball python, two boa constrictors, a budgie, a ferret and a cage full of zebra finches. The search through the normal channels had been no more successful.

It was clear Ezekiel was becoming more and more fond of her, and in time, she figured he’d get used to her and go on with his life. If she hadn’t gone to the pet psychologist that might have been enough, but the thought of Ezekiel never being able to speak in his own language and never being able to know the love of a good bird was fast becoming an obsession with her. She would find the parrot a companion if it was the last thing she did.

“Where’s Ellen?”

It was the first thing Ezekiel had said since he’d been with her.

Her throat tightened. “I’m sorry, Ellen’s gone, Sweetie.” She ran her index finger up the parrot’s breastbone, ruffling soft feathers. He arched his neck and gave her a gentle nip.

“I know what — let’s sit in the back garden, and I’ll read to you. It’s nice and warm and you’ll enjoy the sunshine. Later we’ll have a nice fruit salad and some nuts.”

Just as she opened the back door, the front door bell rang. It was Tessa.

“Just returning your Christmas DVDs.” Tessa glanced at her watch. “Love to hear more about Ezekiel’s personal life, but I’m having cocktails with some friends and then we’re off to Marcella’s Christmas party.” She nodded to Mary. “You should join us. Surely you could find someone to stay with Ezekiel for a few hours.”

“Have a good time,” was Mary’s only reply as she waved her friend off. She wasn’t about to leave the poor bird alone.

When she returned to the kitchen, Ezekiel was gone.

Matchmaker Part 3

 

Matchmaker: A FREE Holiday Story Part 1

I love to indulge in a little sappy silly, romantic fun this time of year, and that being the case starting today through Boxing Day, I will be sharing a little seasonal story with you called Matchmaker. While it’s squeaky clean as far as content goes, it’s fun and quirky and hopefully something you’ll all enjoy. I certainly enjoyed writing it. It’s main character happens to be a bird. Those of you who know my love for our feathered friends won’t be surprised at all. Happy Holidays, my Darlings! Enjoy the story!

 

Matchmaker Part 1

“What am I going to do?” Mary asked the vet. “Ezekiel’s inconsolable. He squawks all night, which means neither of us sleeps, and I have to work and leave him alone, and that only makes matters worse.”

The vet stroked his stethoscope, an act that seemed incongruent with the bright red Santa Clause cap sitting precariously on the top of his balding head. He looked the parrot up and down and, and then stated the obvious. “He’s mourning.”

“I know he’s mourning. What I don’t know is how to cheer him up.”

The vet shook his head. “Mourning has to run its course, with animals just like with humans.”

She rubbed gritty eyes. “What do I do in the meantime? How can I help him? Can you sedate him?”

“Wouldn’t advise it. I can recommend a pet psychologist, though.”

“Will it help?”

“Can’t hurt. Dr. Thompson is also a vet, so she won’t steer you wrong, none of this airy-fairy faffing about.”

 

It was full dark when Mary arrived in Woking. The fairy lights sparkled on the houses and in the shop windows, and the unseasonable warmth had not dampened the holiday spirit of the Christmas shoppers scurrying up and down High Street. Ezekiel was the last appointment of the day, and the waiting room was empty when Mary stepped inside with Ezekiel’s cage in tow. Christmas music that was a little less obnoxious and a little more subdued than what blared in the local shops played quietly over the sound system. Almost immediately, Mary and Ezekial were ushered in to Dr. Susan Thompson’s office.

“Oh, he is lovely,” the woman cooed in a nasal Welsh accent. “I’ve never treated an African grey before. I have counseled a couple of cockatoos, and a lovebird. What seems to be the problem?”

Mary heaved a sigh. “Two months ago my friend Ellen died.”

“I’m sorry for your loss.” Dr. Thompson nudged a box of tissues in Mary’s direction.

“Thank you. Ellen was a linguist who studied the rudiments of language in other species.”

The psychologist brightened. “Of course! I’ve heard about the research on African grey parrots. Even smarter than primates, I read.”

“Ellen worked with Ezekiel almost fifteen years. He has a huge vocabulary, and his comprehension is off the chart. Because parrots are long-lived, Ellen had made arrangements for him to live with me on the off chance that something should happen, if she should …” She swallowed around the growing tightness in her throat and took a deep breath. “Anyway, there was a car accident and …”

“Ezekiel came to live with you,” the doctor finished for her gently.

Mary nodded and blinked hard. “Since her death, Ezekiel refuses to talk. He just squawks. He won’t eat, and I’m afraid he’ll start pulling out his own feathers. Stressed birds sometimes do that. I can’t stand to see him suffer so. Ezekiel is, well, he’s special.”

“Ezekiel’s mourning the loss of his mate.”

“What?”

“You see,” Dr. Thompson scooted to the edge of her seat, “parrots are social animals. In their natural environment, you seldom see a lone parrot. When parrots are kept in captivity, they can only be taught to talk if they’re kept away from their own kind.”

“So when they have no one to speak to in their own language, they’re forced to learn ours?” The tightness in Mary’s throat returned with a vengeance.

“Ezekiel will probably bond with you in time. But you’re not a parrot, and even with his huge vocabulary, imagine what it would be like never to speak your own language again.”

This time no amount of blinking could hold back the tears, and Mary reached for the offered tissue box. She’d always been a soft touch, and Ezekiel’s sad story coupled with the recent loss of her friend was just too much. Dr. Thompson
offered quiet verbal support, and Mary was pretty sure that in most cases the pet psychologist found the animals less
neurotic than their humans. She blew her nose and forced a smile. “Well, I’ll just have to find him a mate then, won’t I?”

Easier said than done, Mary soon discovered.

Continue with Matchmaker part 2

 
© 2018 K D Grace
The Romance Reviews

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