I used to be nonchalant about penises. Truth be told, I thought they were ugly. Misshapen. I had the same offhand relationship with them that I did with my period. A sort of oh. You again. I guess I can deal with you, assuming you aren’t too much of a pain. I’d dealt with seven penises before I heard about Easton North’s cock. The four-letter word had been so out of place at the long sorority house table that I’d choked on a crisp chunk of broccoli and had to chug a half-glass of iced tea just to wash it free.
“Chelsea,” I chided, glancing around the dining hall for our sharp-nosed house mother. She had an uncanny ability to sniff out foul language, smuggled alcohol, and the smell of weed—all violations that carried strict punishments and monetary fines. Chelsea was already on her shit list, a situation the short blonde had dismissed with one toss of her French-manicured hand.
“It’s true, Elle.” she insisted, oblivious to the way her sing-song voice carried. “I’m telling you, it was the prettiest thing I’ve ever seen.”
“Pretty?” Laura examined the piece of salmon draped over her salad with the intensity of a surgeon. “That’s an interesting word to use.”
I agreed, though to agree with Laura Pinn was paramount to social suicide. Agreement meant servitude, and once she sniffed out a potential flunky, she hunted and corralled them with the ruthlessness of a hyena.
“It was just…” Chelsea sank against the back of the linen-wrapped chair and sighed, her features settling into the blissful look of a woman who has just gorged on too many desserts. I watched her with interest. “Perfection.” She finished. “Thick, beautiful, perfection.”
I swallowed my own questions, certain that they would be covered by others. Sure enough, Ling perked up, lifting her attention off the thick calculus book before her and fixating on Chelsea. “I thought you were dating that soccer player.”
“I was,” Chelsea mused. “But that was before Easton. Before I met IT.”
IT seemed to be a reference to his cock. I shook a packet of Splenda into my tea and waited, curious to see where this conversation was going.
She groaned. “You guys know me. It’s not like I have a thing for cocks. It just something about his.” She lifted her gaze to the ceiling and smiled as if picturing it above her.
There was a long period of stunned silence where we digested the fact that Chelsea didn’t think she had a thing for dicks. The girl was our pledge class whore. She was the reason we scored the section 13 football block with Delt, the reason our house curfew had been changed to midnight, and the sole cause of a sorority-wide three-hour standards lecture on promiscuity. At one point poor Ling, who’d never been to second base, had blushed so deep that the speaker had stopped in alarm, certain she was choking.
“You don’t have a thing for cocks?” I repeat, lowering my voice on the final word. “So…” I didn’t want to say it. I didn’t want to blurt out the question hammering inside every one of our sophomoric heads. So… why do you sleep with every guy who crosses your path?
Chelsea straightened off the back of the chair and the overhead light glinted off a whitehead heavily coated in concealer. “I suppose you’ve been having sex with Jonah because you like his penis?” She said dryly.
It was a valid point and I snapped my lips together, dropping my gaze off her whitehead and back to my salad. I was having sex with Jonah because I liked Jonah, and sex seemed to be that eventual outcome of any college relationship that survived three weeks. Jonah’s penis, out of the seven I’d seen, was the smallest—an observation I’d made to Chelsea in the back of a filthy cab, at 2:30 in the morning, drunk on tequila. An observation I’d hope she had forgotten. She hadn’t.
“Why is his penis so pretty?” Ling tilted her head, peering at Chelsea as she speared a cucumber from her bowl without looking. “Color? Texture? Girth? Shape?”
Only Ling would ask about the texture of a penis, and Laura Pinn swooped on the opportunity, talons outstretched.
“Ling,” she sniffed. “Why don’t you take your studying into the den and let the big girls talk?” She gave a delicate and generous smile, the sort that the wolf flashed right before he ate Little Red Riding Hood.
I clamped a hand on Ling’s arm before she could move. “Fuck off, Laura.” I gave my own sweet smile. “Chelsea?” I raised my brows, urging her to answer the question before Laura Pinn blew a blood vessel.
Chelsea’s gaze darted between the three of us like a freshman jaw on its first hit of cocaine. I could tell she was torn between the potential carnage of an impending fight and the juiciness of her story. She let me hang for one painful second, then sighed, that starstruck look returning to her eyes. “Okay, so you know how some heads are, like, mushrooms on the top of a shaft?”
At Ling’s horrified look, she carried on, redirecting the next question to me.
“And how others are smaller than the shaft, like a pencil eraser?”
I nodded, though I had never examined my penises to this extent. Most of my interactions with them had been in the dark, my hand sweaty, contact minimal, the experiences short. Out of my seven, I could have potentially picked out three in a lineup, Jonah’s included. The head/shaft ratio of any of them… I had no idea.
“His is perfect, not too big, not too small.”
“Great,” Laura said dryly. “The Berenstain Bears of penises.”
“Not Berenstain Bears,” Ling interjected. “Three Little Pigs.”
“ANYWAY,” Chelsea continued. “It’s also rugged. Like, that seems like a weird word to describe a cock, but it’s so utterly masculine. He dropped his pants, and I swear to God, I wanted to just drop to my knees and worship it.”
Laura, whose bitchiness levels rivaled her devotion to Jesus, paled at the false Gods picture that Chelsea was painting. I chewed on a forkful of salad and theorized that Chelsea had probably already been on her knees at that point.
“And it’s big, obviously,” Chelsea carried on, unaware that conversations on both sides of our trio had stopped as the legend of Easton grew. Pun intended. She dropped her fork with a clink against the bowl and held out her palms, spreading them a sizable distance apart until even Laura hissed with approval.
“But honestly, “ Chelsea continued airily, dropping her hands and plucking a crouton out of her salad. “It wasn’t that it was big, or beautiful, that really mattered. What mattered…” she paused for effect.
The cliffhanger worked on all of us, including me. I eyed the clock at the end of the room, aware that I should have left three minutes ago. Stuffing another mouthful of salad into my mouth, I chewed faster and waited for Chelsea’s next words.
“What mattered,” she repeated, leaning forward as if she was about to deliver the Holy Grail of gossip. “Was how he used it.”
“Used his penis?” Ling asked stupidly, and for someone with the highest GPA in our pledge class, she was painfully dumb at times.
“Yes, Ling. His penis.” Laura puffed out her cheeks and made a big show of picking up her Louis Vuitton satchel and sliding it over one shoulder. “Well, this was fun. Chelsea slept with someone else. Whoop Dee Do. I’ll spread the word.”
I saw, in the brief moment when Chelsea’s eyebrows knitted together, the pain of the impact. The evidence cleared quickly and she laughed, meeting my eyes without responding to Laura.
“Prude,” I muttered as soon as the Lilly Pulitzer-clad brunette was out of earshot.
“Right?” Chelsea tucked the long part of her bangs behind her ear. “Anyways, it was amazing. Like, four orgasms amazing. I don’t know how I’ll find anyone to compare with it.”
“Maybe you won’t have to,” Ling suggested. “Maybe you will get married and have babies and screw like bunnies until you’re old and wrinkly.” She giggled at us over the edge of her thick calculus textbook and I really loved her in that moment, despite her naiveté. Because the rest of us knew that Easton wouldn’t marry Chelsea. In the rules of college life, the male slut never marries the female slut. The male slut finds a good girl, someone untainted and naive, and moves her to the suburbs where he gives her 2.5 orgasms, three times a week, along with the shopping list.
He would marry me, but Chelsea and Ling and bitchy Laura and I didn’t realize that yet. All we did know was that Easton North had a nice cock. And that simple fact was what, years later, got me into this mess.
On my knees, between two men. My husband’s hand on the back of my head.
Would you tell your husband everything?
Every torrid thought?
Every twisted fantasy?
The forbidden images that slink into your mind in your most vulnerable moments?
I shouldn't have. I hesitated to. But I did.
And my husband? He gave them all to me.
“You can tell me the truth, Elle. About what you want.”
I wanted to say the same thing to him, given that his dick was about to pierce a hole through the front of his jeans. Maybe the idea of me being with someone else did make him furious, but it also, most definitely, turned my husband on.