Shame oozed from her pores and covered her in syrup that smelled like sex. No matter how much she washed, it just kept coming, so she sat. It had happened in the kitchen and Lela thanked whatever powers there may be that no one was home besides the cat.
But the cat was bad enough because he was the problem. She could normally control herself and suppress the urges, but Percy always brought out the worst from within her. If only Simon and Lovelle hadn’t taken the stray in.
“Why are you doing this to me?”
He didn’t even “meow,” just turned his head away from her as if he shared some measure of her humiliation, or perhaps it was merely disgust.
“Leave me alone.”
The cat stayed perched in the window, basking in early morning sunshine. Lela worked nights and was about to make a little breakfast before bed when it happened. Her clothes were strewn on the floor. The ooze tended to stick on and ruin anything she was wearing.Her shirt was a loss, but she’d managed to peel off everything else in time.
Lela had been twelve the first time it happened. His name was Eric and he was beautiful. She didn’t think she’d ever seen a boy as handsome, as graceful, as charming. He was running on the school’s track, practicing for a field competition. She kept looking at his legs and how his muscles flexed with each pumping stride.
She gasped as she felt the wetness on her back. It was a cold afternoon, so her jacket covered the stains. She almost destroyed the washing machine trying to clean her blouse and ended up having to throw it away.
At first, she thought it was sex that triggered the response, but she’d lost her virginity when she was seventeen and it didn’t happen then.
It didn’t happen when she had her second affair in college, but it did happen when her Christian friend Emily convinced her to read the Bible and pray. She was surprised to find Eric in church sitting four rows ahead of her during the service, but he didn’t see her. It had been years, and she decided not to try to talk to him. Besides, he wasn’t the reason she was in the sanctuary.
She was alone in her dorm room and pouring her heart out to God when she could feel the urges welling up inside her, and then horror and degradation overwhelmed her. This time, the slime and sludge ran down her back to her arms and legs. She almost couldn’t get her clothes off because of the stickiness. Lela never went back to church.
“Why the damn cat?”
The episode was beginning to subside. Soon, whatever it was her body produced would degrade enough to be able to be washed off her skin with soap and water. Too bad that never worked on her clothes.
The horrible feeling of chagrin was passing. Every time it happened, which thankfully wasn’t often, she felt as if she were nude in public, as if every passerby was intimately exploring her genitals with their eyes and their fingers. She was exposed and disgraced, an object of ignominy. What was happening to her? She just wanted it to stop.
Percy was sitting outside the shower an hour later as she finally turned the water off and got out. She ran the towel over her body, feeling tired and refreshed at the same time. Lela kept forgetting that once the event was over, she felt a sense of relief, not just that the indignity had passed, but the release of something evil or unwanted. It was a little like the afterglow of an orgasm.
“Oh, so now you meow to me. What do you want?”
She’d brought her clothes with her into the bathroom, planning to put the soiled shirt in the garbage. Percy sniffed at it and then started rolling in the half-dried muck.
The cat was in ecstasy, his purrs rumbling like a cement mixer.
Then he suddenly stopped, looked up, and ran out of the bathroom. The doorbell rang.
“Oh great.” She grabbed the robe she’d tossed over the edge of the tub and put it on. “Coming.”
She looked through the window and gasped, then Lela almost tripped over Percy when she went to open the door.
“It’s been a long time.”
“Eric. You remember me?”
“I came for my cat.”
She looked down to see Percy rubbing himself against Eric’s pant leg.
“Actually, I came for you, too.”
“I don’t understand.” She was suddenly conscious of being nude except for the worn terry cloth robe she’d hastily thrown around her.
“I didn’t understand it either, not at first. I think we were both too young.”
“What are you talking about?”
“You’re different, aren’t you?”
“What do you mean?”
“Aidan can smell it on me. I bet that’s why he’s attracted to you, too.”
“The ooze. I can see flakes of it in his fur. It just happened to you, didn’t it?”
She tried to slam the door but he forced it back with his arm. “I won’t hurt you, but I need to make you understand that we aren’t like the others.”
“Leave me alone.”
“It’s okay, Lela. It’s nothing bad. Aidan can sense us. He’s bringing us together.”
“Who’s us?” Tears were streaming down her face. She was scared but not of the young man standing on her porch.
“I don’t think we’re human. I think we’re something else.”
“And your stupid cat knows what we are?”
“If you’ll let me come in, I’ll try to explain.”
“I’m not dressed.” She felt strangely aroused and satiated at the same time.
“You can put some clothes on while I wait in the living room, but we have a lot to talk about.”
“I worked all night. I need to get some sleep.”
“You’ll live if you skip a few hours rest, Lela.”
She stepped back, not knowing why she trusted him. She shouldn’t. They hadn’t seen each other for ten years, except for that one time in church when she was an undergrad, and he hadn’t noticed her, or maybe he had.
“Thank you.” Eric walked in and closed the door behind him.
Instead of going to her bedroom to get dressed as she planned, she stood in the middle of the room. Her sense of arousal was intensifying which made her feel ashamed. He was practically a stranger.
“I think I know what’s about to happen, Lela. It will be easier if we do it on a tile floor, easier to clean up afterwards.”
He grabbed her arm. “The kitchen is the closest.”
“Stop. Wait.” She hadn’t washed out the sink yet. If he saw it, what would he think?
Then it was too late. It was happening again. It had never happened twice in a row. She felt him stripping the robe off as the ooze percolated from her skin. She crouched down low to the floor trying to cover herself. He was ripping at his clothes, trying to get free before they became soaked.
“It’s happening to you, too.” Her eyes were wide with astonishment.
“It think it’s how we mate.”
Their syrup splashed to the floor and each pool drifted into the other. She had never seen anyone so amazing in her life. Eric was the most beautiful man in the world. There was no shame anymore, only the desire to meld and become one. Now it wasn’t just on her skin. She felt her body soften and melt, just as his was doing. They were becoming the ooze and joining
The cat had brought two more together and now they were one, but his job was just beginning. There was the others and he had to find them.
I apologize if the content of my wee tale is offensive to some, but the image was strangely erotic, but also, for me at least, evoked a sense of shame. I had originally considered some sort of witchcraft theme given the presence of a black cat, but as I kept writing, it didn’t seem to work out that way. In fact, as I was writing, I felt like someone in a car on a freeway running out of gas and desperately seeking an off ramp.
I finally found it.