Later that evening
I pulled the last corner of the fitted sheet snugly over the mattress before shoving my face into the freshly laundered bedding. The overpowering floral scent of fabric softener was a welcome improvement over Simon’s stink. Tonight, I’d put my foot down about the bed and bathing situation, and to make my point, I set up an inflatable mattress on the floor near the television.
Being jobless had its benefits, and I got some grocery shopping done for Simon’s ‘better than sex’ baked ziti while also getting a head start on packing. Rent was coming due soon, and it wouldn’t be long before the eviction letters followed.
The locked door knob rattled moments before Simon rapped out a playful rhythm.
“Little piggy, let me in,” he called out, his voice strangely muffled.
“I swear to God, if he’s actually dressed as a rabbi, I’m calling the police,” I muttered under my breath as I twisted the lock and deadbolt. Simon greeted me from inside of an old mattress with holes cut out for his legs and arms and a tiny slit for the eyes. He hid his claws with a pair of mismatched flannel oven mitts and wore trash bags over his feet. As if this getup wasn’t confusing enough, a wrapped turban over a ball was attached to the top by what looked like industrial velcro. “God damn it!”
“What?” He turned sideways and hobbled by me through the door, and I looked both ways to see if he’d drawn any attention to himself before shutting it.
“What the hell is this supposed to be?”
“Ain’t it obvious?” he asked, letting the oven mitts fall to the floor before struggling to bend his arm enough to point upward. “I’m the Sultan of Serta.”
I bit my lower lip, trying not to laugh. “Get this disgusting thing out of my apartment.”
“It ain’t that bad.” Though I couldn’t see his face, I could hear him inhale through his nose. “Smells a little like when I was helping one of my friends shoot a porno. We had an old mattress like this on the floor.” He struggled a little, pulling both arms inside so he could unzip the bottom. He had obviously removed enough of the innards so he could fit while somehow keeping just enough for it to maintain its shape. Like a dog in an oversized E-collar, he struggled to slip out of the mattress, getting stuck halfway. “Uh… may need yer help.”
I grabbed the top, which was slightly damp and gave it a yank. “This is so fucking gross.” With one final pull, he slipped free.
“Ahh, much better,” he said, eying the earrings on the counter. “I can’t wait for you to wear ’em tomorrow. They suit you.”
“What the hell is that supposed to mean?” I asked, pointing to the back door that led to the balcony. “Put this thing out there. It smells worse than you, and that’s saying something.”
He let out a laugh before dragging the nasty, mostly empty mattress to the door, shoving it outside. He rubbed his hands together and walked toward the fridge to grab a bottle of beer.
“I think we should wait until next week. It’s not a good time right now,” I said, spraying some of my deodorant around the living room.
“I told you, my buddy said we gotta get them in before you start healing too fast.” The air mattress finally caught his eye. “You gonna start sleeping on that now?”
“No.” I glared at him and crossed my arms.
Simon groaned. “Aw, come on, Art!”
“You’re my roommate, not my boyfriend.” I grabbed a bottle of werewolf shampoo sitting on the counter. “You fucking stink.”
He snatched the bottle away and scowled at me. “You don’t deserve my baked ziti,” he growled before disappearing into the bathroom.
“Fine. I’ll make it myself.”
Simon popped his head out from around the corner, raising an eyebrow.
“It’s not like it’s that hard. Any idiot can read a recipe.”
He slowly backed out of the bathroom, looking a little worried. “You can’t even make a proper tuna sandwich.”
I opened the pantry, grabbing a box of penne pasta and a couple jars of tomato sauce before laying them out on the counter.
“What the hell is this? Is that Ragu? Did you seriously bring Ragu into this house?”
“What the hell does it matter? Italian food is all just tomato sauce with different shaped noodles anyway.”
Simon grabbed his chest and looked up at the ceiling. “Porca miseria,” he cried out in an overdramatic Italian accent.
He said nothing and walked into the bathroom before shutting the door.
I stared in amazement at a blackened red and brown mass that was somehow overcooked and undercooked at the same time. Squeaky shower handles silenced the running water in the bathroom. Simon had been in there for over an hour, and I’d hoped the residual smoke billowing around the fluorescent lighting would have dissipated by now.
My attempt at this dish was a complete disaster, and Simon would never let me hear the end of it.
The blow dryer clicked on which meant I had a little more time. Perhaps I could let the ziti bake at a lower temperature to finish cooking the middle. After setting the oven to three hundred, I slid the pan back onto the center rack and waited.
After fifteen minutes, the hair dryer cut off, and the bathroom door cracked open. Simon slithered out and sniffed the air, exaggerating a cough.
“Smells like you’ve sure got things under control.”
“Shut up,” I muttered, opening the oven door for a moment to peek inside. “It’s almost done.”
“I think it was done forty-five minutes ago from the smell of it,” he muttered before stepping into the living area. The werewolf eyed the air mattress with disdain before opting to sit on the beanbag chair to watch TV. “When we move, I should bring my games—and my couch.”
“You have actual stuff?”
He nodded. “Well, yeah. All of it’s in storage.”
We both went quiet as he flipped through the channels. I turned back to the oven and opened the door again as a puff of black smoke escaped. The smoke detector that I had taken off the wall earlier began to beep, so I threw it into a bottom cabinet until it stopped.
“Dinner must be ready,” Simon said, running up to the counter.
“It’s a little overdone, but I followed the instructions.”
Simon scrutinized the pan, his expression darkening. “You should be arrested for this.”
“This is the first time I’ve ever made baked ziti. It’s not that bad.”
“You can’t take a dump in a pan, sprinkle it with cheese and call it baked ziti.”
“Do you want to eat this or not?”
Simon scratched his head. “That’s probably the toughest question I’ve ever been asked.”
“You’re such an ass,” I said, grabbing a metal spatula from the drawer. I stabbed at the overcooked meal from the edge, but it was rather difficult to push it all the way through. This was going to require a knife and some elbow grease.
Simon stood patiently and watched.
“You smell good,” I said, grabbing a butcher’s knife.
“Does that mean I can sleep on the bed?”
“No.” I sliced the rest of the way into the hard pasta, working my way out to the softer section. I’d never had this dish before, and in the pictures, they were able to spoon it onto a plate. Still, it couldn’t be that bad, right? I placed a square of hard and soft penne pasta with cheese and sauce on the plate and handed it to Simon.
He gave it a sniff before picking at it with his fork. “I’m gonna call the ASPCA.”
“Just eat the damn shit!” I grabbed another plate and cut myself a piece of the hardened pasta. “It looks rough, but I’m sure it tastes fine.”
“Is this yer first time cooking anything?”
“Of course not! It’s just my first time ever using an oven.”
“Christ almighty,” he muttered, stabbing the pasta which had clumped together in a brown-colored mass instead of the usual red. He shoveled a forkful into his mouth and gagged. While leaning over the sink, he let the food fall out of his mouth and into the garbage disposal.
“Wow.” I stuck my fork into the ziti and held it to my mouth. “You didn’t even chew it.”
Simon heaved again, his ears pressing against the sides of his head.
“It’s not that bad. Stop being so extra.” I took a bite and immediately regretted it. How in the hell did I manage to completely change the flavor profile of pre-made tomato sauce? The more I chewed, the more my body rejected it. There was no way I’d be able to swallow this along with my pride.
I ran over to the sink and spat everything out as Simon did earlier before rinsing my mouth with water.
The werewolf opened the refrigerator to grab a bottle of beer, remaining oddly quiet.
“What? You’re not going to take a few more jabs? Kick me when I’m down?”
“I need a moment,” Simon said, calmly composing himself. “What you just did to Italian cuisine brought my grandma back to life and killed her all over again.”
I rolled my eyes. “And here we go.”
He took another sip of beer, swishing it around before swallowing. “I can’t get this taste out of my mouth.”
I grabbed a frozen pizza from the freezer, but Simon snatched it out of my hand.
“No! You already raped my dead grandma, and I’m not letting you desecrate Mama Celeste.” He pulled a pizza pan from the cabinet and frowned at the brick of ruined pasta sitting on top of the stove. “You were a victim of hubris,” he whispered, running his clawed fingers over burnt cheese.
I raised an eyebrow at that uncharacteristically articulate statement. “Are you done?”
“Yeah, I think you get the point. Yer not allowed to cook anymore.” Simon removed the pizza from the box and preheated the oven.
We ate in front of the television, him sitting on the air mattress and me on my beanbag chair, flipping through the channels to see if there was anything good. There hadn’t been enough time lately to just sit down and watch something, so I wasn’t even sure what basic cable had to offer anymore.
“Hold up,” Simon said with his mouth full. “Go back one.”
I pressed the down arrow on the remote and recognized the show from my childhood.
“I loved this show when I was younger.”
“It was one of the better ones,” Simon said, taking another bite. “They don’t make Star Trek like this anymore.”
“Didn’t expect you of all people to be a sci-fi fan.”
“Heh.” His tail swayed over the sheets as he shoved another slice of pizza into his mouth. His involuntary body language was easier to pick up on the longer I was around him. When his tail wagged from side-to-side and ears were up and forward, he was about to be a dick. When his ears fell and tail wagged slower like this, he was comfortable. Despite him annoying me, I couldn’t help but feel more comfortable around him as well.
He caught me staring, so I turned back toward the TV and yawned. “I should probably get to bed soon.”
“Wanna have some fun first?” His heavy tail pounded the mattress, and he shot me a jagged grin with a rope of drool hanging from an exposed canine. That body language needed no explanation.
“Not tonight. I haven’t been feeling all that good lately.”
Simon stood and stretched before plodding across the room. “Well, let’s get to bed.”
“Where do you think you’re going?”
His ears fell, and his watery eyes went wide as he stared at me.
“I’m immune now.” I pointed at the air mattress. “Go lay down.”
The puppy dog look faded quickly, replaced by a scowl. “Fine,” he said with a growl, lying back down on the inflatable bed, exaggerating his discomfort as he turned from side-to-side.
I hopped into my bed and shuffled under the covers while staring up at the shadows dancing from the glow of the television screen. My eyes got heavier before a pop followed by a rush of air caused them to snap open.
“Oops,” Simon said.
I threw the covers off and sat upright as Simon sunk to the ground, the bed deflating under him.
“It’s yer fault,” he said, rolling off of the ruined mattress. “You made a three-hundred-pound monster sleep on a flimsy inflatable bed. What the hell did you think was gonna happen?”
“You wish your fat ass was three hundred pounds. You did that on purpose.”
“Did not,” he said calmly while walking over to my bed.
“Sleep on the floor.”
Simon grinned before slipping under the covers. “Make me.”
I ground my teeth and laid back down, facing away from the infuriating werewolf.
“I’m not wearing those earrings.”
Simon shuffled uncomfortably before sitting up against the headboard. “You’re gonna have to learn to live with werewolves… and sleep with them.”
“I shouldn’t have to live with anyone if I don’t want to. I could just live on my own, put all my money away and buy a house once I’m fully turned.”
“Sounds like you’ve got it all figured out.” Simon let out a sigh before lying back down.
I didn’t respond, and he turned toward me before rubbing my head.
“You don’t have a clue what’s about to happen to you, but I’ve been there. The world’s not a friendly place to us, and yer not gonna want to be alone, Art. Trust me.”
It was around midnight that I woke up in a cold sweat before rushing to the bathroom.
The bed creaked in the other room as Simon stirred. “What’s going on? You okay?”
I didn’t respond; instead, I stared at the mirror while running my fingers through the thicker body hair covering my chest. My ears now tapered to a point, and the sclera around my orange irises was nearly coal black.
“Hey look at this handsome fella,” Simon said casually as he stepped behind me, his nostrils flaring while he smelled my neck. There was something off about his scent, something that was neither pleasant nor unpleasant, and I couldn’t stop smelling it.
“What’s wrong with my nose?” I inhaled deeply, and my brain was hit with what felt like a thousand volts of electricity. “Holy shit.”
Simon grabbed my arms and turned me around before lifting me onto the bathroom sink. He wasted no time pulling off my underwear, his warm tongue wrapping around my cock. I grabbed his mane with both hands, growling as he licked and sucked. He wasn’t even pacing himself, as if he were in a mad rush to get me off as quickly as possible.
One more stroke of his tongue sent me into fits, my hips pushing deeper into the wet warmth of Simon’s maw. I threw my head back and a pathetic howl left my throat while the rest of my body trembled.
Simon hummed to satisfaction as he swallowed me, his tongue prodding my half-hard dick for more.
“Fuuuuck,” I cried out. More of my cum mixed with his saliva before roping along the corners of his mouth. I’d never felt such an intense desire to be fucked before—not just fucked, ravaged without mercy. He ran his rough, slippery tongue along my shaft before working lower, soaking what I needed filled. I relented, not giving any resistance as the slender muscle punched its way into me. Simon’s wet snout brushed against my taint as he continued sniffing. It was as though every inch of me that gave off a smell was a drug he couldn’t get enough of.
An increasingly violent Simon dug his claws into my arms, letting out a roar as he pulled me into the shower like a doll. The werewolf’s gentle disposition shifted in the other direction, and my body responded in kind. With his hefty, muscular body against my smaller frame, he pressed me against the wall, while the tongue that had pleasured me moments ago traced along the crook of my neck.
This was everything I wanted. It was as though Simon knew exactly what to do, and I never had to open my mouth—as if I would have been able to say anything coherent.
He took all control away, and fending off someone three times my size was impossible. The feeling of complete domination made my heart race and stomach knot as though I’d jumped from an airplane with no parachute.
As he pushed forward, the head of his engorged cock sank into me. I thought since we’d done this a couple times and he got me prepared, that I could handle him easily. That wasn’t the case at all as white-hot agony pulsed from my abused hole. I screamed out, gritting my teeth while reaching back to stop him from going in deeper, but there was no slowing him down.
He gripped my shoulders tighter while pushing me down onto the enormous shaft, which was somehow thicker than I remembered it being. I tried pushing him out, clenching, anything, but all that did was allow him the freedom to delve deeper. Inch-by-painful-inch, he disappeared inside of me, and the slick squelching of the invader paired nicely with my moans as he began to thrust, stretching me to my limits.
Simon was much rougher than before. The way he snarled and clawed at my neck, giving little regard to my safety somehow made it even more incredible. I craved it; we both did. He was leaking so much precum into me that every time he pulled out a few inches, it would trickle down my inner thigh. The wet sounds and muffled thuds of his tennis ball-sized balls sent me into an almost trance-like state of ecstasy.
The tempo of his thrusting slowed, but the intensity increased. He would pull most of the way out before shoving himself back in with such aggression that my feet lifted from the tub. After a couple more gut-stretching minutes, he let out a moan so loud and deep it vibrated the tile walls. There wasn’t any more pain as he sped up again.
His hips jackhammered me faster than earlier, and I moaned out as his veiny girth rubbed against my prostate in a rhythm that made me come again without touching myself at all.
“Simon,” I moaned out, and he caught my neck with his hand, keeping me in place against the wall with my feet dangling several inches from the bottom of the tub. A familiar heat spread up into my bowels, my abdomen gurgling with every pulse.
“Feel better now?” he asked, gently biting my neck.
“Ye—” Before I could respond, his tongue met mine. Sex with him was different this time; it wasn’t just pleasure anymore. It was an urge, like my body would tear itself apart just to satisfy it. Simon understood what I couldn’t, and after our lips separated, a familiar shame beat me over the head again.
I felt dirty.
After finishing inside of me, Simon pulled away, his half-hard cock sliding out easily as a rush of thick spunk followed. As the passion cooled, an odd sensation covered my glans. I held my own cock in my hands, examining the foreskin that wasn’t there earlier.
“What the hell?”
“Oh yeah, I forgot about that,” Simon said, his mouth right next to my ear. “It grows back. You got a little more flavor now.”
I gently shoved him away. “I need a shower.”
“I’m goin’ back to bed.” Simon stepped out of the tub, wiping his cum-covered cock with the cloth shower curtain.
“There’s a towel right in front of you. God!”
“Habit,” he replied with his usual grin.
We left the apartment early that morning, making sure to stay out of sight of the other tenants. There may have already been suspicions that a werewolf was living with me, considering all the missed calls I received from the property manager. I didn’t bother answering or checking the voicemail because none of it would matter soon, and I didn’t want the added stress.
The barred entrance of a seedy-looking tattoo parlor with a neon ‘open’ sign in the window stood before us with graffiti covering most of the walls. I wouldn’t have called it graffiti considering how beautiful the artwork was. There was even some abstract painting near the roof that looked like a werewolf and a topless woman squarish tits holding hands along the beach.
“You okay?” Simon asked. There was actual concern in his tone which surprised me. I was kind of expecting him to be a little more relentless with his teasing.
“I’m fine. Let’s just get this over with.”
Simon grunted and pushed open the door.
“Well look at this ugly bastard,” a tall man at the counter said. He was older, perhaps in his late fifties with peppered black and gray hair and a body covered in tattoos—some tasteful, other… not so much. He wore a skimpy leather vest with nothing underneath, revealing a pacemaker scar that had been decorated with an anatomically correct heart in a cage. “Finally snagged yourself a half-turn, huh?”
Simon wrapped his arm playfully around my neck and pulled me close. “Art, meet Bart.” He chuckled to himself at the rhyme before nudging me forward. “Yer in good hands—well, if he’s sober.”
“He’d be in better hands had you gotten him here sooner,” Bart said, getting a closer look at my ears. “You got the kuu?”
Simon opened his hand. “Right here.”
He took the earrings and began walking to the back with us following close behind. “Alright, let’s get you pierced.”
The piercing process didn’t take quite as long as I thought it would, and it didn’t hurt that much either considering all the topical lidocaine he slathered on my earlobes. It was a good thing he did that, because he couldn’t pierce my ears using the normal method of guiding a needle with a stud attached to the end. Apparently half-turns heal so rapidly that the needle could get stuck halfway if it’s not done quickly enough. He ended up jamming it all the way before quickly guiding the earring through the hole before it closed. I thought he’d rip my earlobes off. As soon as it was in, it wasn’t going to come out easy later.
As I walked with Simon back to the apartment, the heaviness of the jewelry on my lobes was hard to get used to. Not only that, but I did feel something the moment both of them were secure, like a sudden surge of warmth that radiated through my body before disappearing. After that, the eerie glow of the gold dissipated and they looked like normal hoop earrings.
I looked up at the werewolf next to me as he smiled, his tail swaying in time with his cocky stride.
“Well, looks like you got what you wanted,” I said as we passed people along the walkway. It seemed like the whole world was staring at me now. There was no more blending into the background anymore; I was front and center, the side-show half-turn no one trusted.
“We got what we needed,” Simon corrected as we began our ascent up the steps toward my apartment. A red envelope lay taped to my front door.
Simon and I glanced at one another, and I grabbed it before stepping inside.
“I guess I can’t keep ignoring them.” I opened the envelope which contained several security camera stills of Simon’s idiotic costumes as well as Simon out of costume leaving my apartment. I began reading through the letter, and there wasn’t much to it, just some professionally-worded sentences with some legal jargon.
“How long are they gonna give you?”
I sighed and tossed the pictures and letter into the garbage. “Not long enough. I don’t even know where I’m going to live yet.”
“Tomorrow, we’ll put yer stuff into my storage unit. Lucky you ain’t got that much.”
“You like the beach?” he asked, stepping into the kitchen.
“I like having a roof over my head.”
“I got a buddy that lives in a shack by the beach. If we supply him with meat and beer, he’ll let us hang with him.”
“A shack… by the beach,” I muttered before sitting on my bed. “Can’t we just get a cheap motel near Ruskin Street?”
“You ain’t gonna find a room available. The whole reason I was on the streets was because I couldn’t find any werewolf-friendly motels that weren’t already full.”
“How do you even know this buddy of yours is going to say yes?”
“In all the years I’ve known him, Derrek’s had my back. I mean, the guy saves people for a living.”
I remembered something Rob mentioned last week. “Is Derrek the werewolf lifeguard at White Dunes?”
“Uh huh,” Simon said, popping open a bottle of beer. “He’s a big fucker, too. You heard of him?”
“Kind of. He’s one of my old boss’s friends.”
“Derrek’s everybody’s friend. Never met a nicer guy, but he fucks everything that moves.”
Simon let out a grunted laugh. “Okay I know what yer thinking, but Derrek’s legendary. I don’t know how he does it; he’s even gotten with straight humans guys. I wonder what he’s up to lately.”
“When’s the last time you talked to him?”
“Uh, hmm…” Simon scratched his head. “Three years ago?”
“Well, call him and see if this is okay. You can’t just drop in on someone unannounced like this.”
“He doesn’t have a phone.” He swallowed the last of his beer and tossed the bottle into the trash can. “How about after I move yer stuff into my storage unit, we pay him a visit? I haven’t been to the beach in years, and it’ll be good for you to get away.”
“How are you going to move my stuff?”
“Let me worry about that.”