Amsterdam · Guyrony · Short stories
And then I saw him.
He had just thrown his gym bag on the bench opposite me in the changing room, and I came to a sudden halt tying my shoes.
He was a God.
Not that I actually have an idea what a god actually looks like these days, and also my taste in guys seem to be an (n)ever changing bouquet of beef and beard, but for some reason the look of this particular guy made wonder how long one could keep staring in a particular direction before it would be regarded as either obvious stalking or some sort of meltdown.
Instead, I purposefully slowed down my shoe-tying and scouted around me for an excuse to not head up to gym area just yet. A couple of other guys were done changing and headed out, and the intensity of being alone with him pressed against my ribcage. And my crotch.
I tried to gain the courage to just say something, something cute, quirky, something interesting or just something polite, anything, anything at all… But instead I felt my cheeks burning (what the hell?) and my mouth just dried up as to point out this wasn’t happening.
Water. I hadn’t filled my bottle.
I grabbed it from my bag and aim to casually walked over to the sink, punched the button and as the water was gushing out, I peeked at the movements behind me in the mirror. The guy undressed, and for a moment I was’t sure if it was real or it was me doing it with my eyes. I felt an urge to sniff his hair, now roughed up because of the t-shirt he pulled on over his head and for a moment seemed like it was painted on to his body.
And what body.
A surge of guilty conscience flooded me, not because of my almost obvious staring, but because I was judging myself for indulging in what could be regarded as a stereotypical body ideal, the exact ideal that was poisoning my self image and pushed me, almost forced me, to this very place I now visit regularly. And yet, I quite literally couldn’t take my eyes of him.
Then my hands got wet. The bottle was flowing over. I fumbled the lid back on and went back to my bag, grabbed it, and finally stowed it away in one of the lockers.
What was this… obsession? First of all, I had no idea whether he was gay or not, and even if he were, would he then have any reason to find me as interesting as I found him? Maybe my obsession was more a fascination of the exact thing I wanted to achieve, externally as internally, and this deity somehow became a manifestation of all my longings and body issues in one subjectively perfect physique and energy.
Calm down, Dr. Phil.
My neck hairs rose as I could swear his shadow caressed my backside as he left the room behind me, and now ready to Taylor Swift my way out of this enchantment, I headed up to the gym.
Of course he had to do his muscle-twitching, sweat-generating, exertion-moaning exercises not even a body length away from me every step of the way, and an hour passed faster than my heartbeat, as I was mesmerised by every minuscule movement, and I caught my self wondering about things like how sensational his armpits would taste in the morning, or how his ginger-ish beard would rub my ass to the heavens.
And then it struck me, the disconnection of being completely taken by a person that might not even recognise your existence.
My make-believe lactic acid in my muscle told me that my workout had come to an end. I headed back down to undress at my bench, grabbed a towel and dragged myself to the showers; after unsuccessfully restraining myself from checking myself out in the mirror as I passed it on the way.
I let myself be absorbed by the lukewarm water and imagined how every single drop would bind itself to the sweat on my body as it were removing my thick excess thoughts, struggles and self doubts; washing them away and let them disappear forever down the drain. I sighed.
Worth a shot.
As I reached for my towel, he entered. Naked. I let the towel fall to my groin and paused for a moment, before slowly drying myself off while taking in everything I saw of him in the shower through my very extended peripheral sight.
Back on my bench, getting dressed with no particular haste, I felt his presence as he came back and caressed his skin with his towel before decorating his body with layers of clothing that somehow moulded to his inviting curves accordingly.
Soon after, we both left. First him. Then I.
He walked right in front of me, and I slowly followed; I could almost taste his scent of fresh, salty sweat; I somehow bathed myself in the heat still exuding from every single muscle he had worked; my whole body surging for some sort of touch, as he was slipping away, walking out into the morning, onto the buzzing, drowsy streets; and I was locked to the melting marble tiles underneath me, powerless to the ever growing canyon of distance that ripped open between us, as he turned the corner and disappeared forever, out of my sight, out of my life.
Or, at least until the next time I spotted him in the gym.
January 15, 2018