Posted on: August 15th, 2010 Invisible

by Lisa Martens

The men had on suits, and she couldn’t tell who had a nice body or not. She was a beautiful girl, except for slightly dented nipples, but she never took her top off during these group meetings.

She spread her legs and at that point became absolutely invisible, and the men put their camera phones down and their dicks away, and began to talk amongst themselves the way men talk when they don’t think there’s a woman around. They noticed a faint smell coming from her general direction, and deduced the location the way astronomers guess where two neutron stars are combusting to form bursts of gamma rays.

“Well, the rays travel from this point to that point,” say the astronomers. “So there must be a system of dead binary stars somewhere up . . . here. Or maybe there are aliens having an intergalactic battle. Either way.”

Such was the smell, a thing of guessing, but hardly of interest, and it could really be anything – old sushi, lesbian remnants, anything.

She stood up and became suddenly self-conscious, and took out her makeup mirror to try to look at herself down there. She’d convinced herself, when she was fifteen and saw her best friend naked in the shower, that there was something horribly wrong with her skin down there. She asked her mother to see a dermatologist, and he’d guaranteed that there wasn’t anything wrong with her, that women came in all sorts of colors and some lips were longer or darker than others, and he gave her a pamphlet and her mother had whined that it’d been a waste of a co-pay.

“You should have just showed me. I’ve got dark lips too, hon.”

She shrugged away the memory and took a cigarette out of her purse. First she tried to smoke with style, and pout her lips as she took a drag, and closed her eyes like she was receiving oral sex, and kept one leg bent and another straight for that model-leaning-against-a-wall look, and then relaxed when she remembered that no one was paying attention to her.

“Now I can smoke the way I normally do,” she said to herself. But she didn’t know exactly how that was. What was her natural way of smoking? She’d spent too much time calculating to know her own mannerisms. That’d actually been the whole point of smoking to begin with – to lose weight, to look sexy.

The men didn’t have erections anymore. They had quit their act of cat-calling and jeering and shouting different commands.

“Suck it!”

“No, take two at once!”

“No, no, take it in the ass!”

“One in the pussy and one in the ass, and suck it!”

They’d given each other high fives. They had to top one another, and suggest crazier and crazier things, because men were supposed to like the craziest absolute kinkiest sex possible. Kinky sex turned into sado-masochism turned into rape turned into strangulation and rape turned into rib-cracking machines and black trash bags and chains and being fucked with knives and dead dead dead.

“I’m glad she went away, you know, I thought things were going to get out of hand, and I wasn’t too keen on fucking her. I got a wife and all . . . and I wouldn’t want to give her a disease from some skank.”

Then the men started pulling out their wallets and comparing babies and saying how their sons were the strongest babies ever and their daughters were naturally dainty and how weird it was that nature just knew these things, and it quickly turned into another type of competition, a my baby is more stereotypical contest.

“My boy was thrashing and hitting and, I swear, trying to punch the doctor. I’m thinking he’s gonna be a boxer when he grows up.”

“Mine was kicking like all holy hell. Good thing my wife had a C-section, or she’d still be feeling it. Soccer player, I bet.”

“My baby girl cried and cried, even when my wife held her, and finally the doctor said that sometimes a male presence helps, because the baby feels more safe and secure and protected, and sure enough, the instant I held her, she got quiet . . . .”

And their stories continued in this way and got more and more ridiculous, like astronomers theorizing that a sudden flash of gamma rays killed the dinosaurs like the flash of a camera encapsulating the human race in ice.

Filed under: bad-ass, stories

5 Responses to “Invisible”

  1. Stories I didn’t like « J.S. Bangs Says:
    August 17th, 2010 at 7:57 am

    [...] at Brain Harvest we get Invisible by Lisa Marten, which attempts to make a banal political point by way of highly [...]

  2. Stories I didn’t like « J.S. Bangs Says:
    August 17th, 2010 at 7:57 am

    [...] at Brain Harvest we get Invisible by Lisa Marten, which attempts to make a banal political point by way of highly [...]

  3. Sandra M. Odell Says:
    August 23rd, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    What an incredible piece. Ms. Martens manages to encapsulate self worth, body imagery, sexism, and stereotypes in an envelope of strong sensory impressions. The mention of posture while smoking perfectly captured the “but I’m sexy” doubts many women have; I felt it and I don’t smoke. The line about “slightly dented nipples” turned a common enough physical feature into a thing of shame.

    Thank you for a great piece!

    Sandra Odell

  4. Sandra M. Odell Says:
    August 23rd, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    What an incredible piece. Ms. Martens manages to encapsulate self worth, body imagery, sexism, and stereotypes in an envelope of strong sensory impressions. The mention of posture while smoking perfectly captured the “but I’m sexy” doubts many women have; I felt it and I don’t smoke. The line about “slightly dented nipples” turned a common enough physical feature into a thing of shame.

    Thank you for a great piece!

    Sandra Odell

  5. Free Fiction for 8/14/10 - SF Signal – A Speculative Fiction Blog Says:
    January 7th, 2012 at 10:17 pm

    [...] “Invisible” by Lisa [...]