My thoughts are crabbed and sallow, My tears like vinegar, Or the bitter blinking yellow Of an acetic star. Tonight the caustic wind, love, Gossips late and soon, And I wear the wry-faced pucker of The sour lemon moon. While like an early summer plum, Puny, green, and tart, Droops upon its wizened stem My lean, unripened heart.
Victorian rigidities were such that ladies were not even allowed to blow out candles in mixed company, as that required them to pucker their lips suggestively. They could not say that they were going "to bed"-that planted too stimulating an image-but merely that they were "retiring." It became effectively impossible to discuss clothing in even a clinical sense without resort to euphemisms. Trousers became "nether integuments" or simply "inexpressibles" and underwear was "linen." Women could refer among themselves to petticoats or, in hushed tones, stockings, but could mention almost nothing else that brushed bare flesh.
I've been called promiscuous. Not a pretty word, is it? Makes you think of the gloop that comes out of your nose or what comes up your throat when you're gagging, if you're trying to swallow down something you didn't necessarily mean to swallow. Promiscuous: your face has to pucker when you say it. I prefer to think of myself as an adventurer. Charting the souls of so many of god's creatures, and of the floaty beings that populate the land of notions. It's a job. It's a calling. It takes strong thigh muscles, intelligence, cunning, a good pair of boots. It takes heart, in fact. The heart to stay on. To not be defeated.
Oh, Draven, " Simon said in a falsetto as he clasped his hands together and held them to his shoulder. He gave Draven a worshipful look. "You're my hero too!" Simon sniffed as if he were holding back tears and threw his arms about Draven's shoulders. "If not for you, that mean old boar would have eaten me alive." Draven pushed Simon away from him. "Get off me, you nimble-pated gelding." "But Draven, " Simon said again in his falsetto, "you're my hero. Give me a kiss." Draven ducked Simon's embrace and stepped behind Emily. "What are you? Moonstruck?" "Fine then, " Simon snapped. "Here, Emily, you kiss him for me." And before either one knew what Simon was about, she found herself tossed into Draven's arms. Their bodies collided. Draven's arms encircled her, and for a moment she couldn't breathe as she stared up into those startled blue eyes. Heat sizzled between them, skipping along both their bodies. Stealing their breath and setting fire to their blood. When Draven made no move to kiss her, Simon tasked. "Fine then, " Simon said, pulling her out of Draven's embrace and into his own. "Let me show you how a kiss is given." Simon dipped his lips to hers, but before he could make contact, Draven caught his chin in one hand and pulled his face away from hers. "If your lips so much as pucker near hers, I will geld you, brother." -Simon and Draven