Of Leopards and Their Spots

by: personalias | Complete Story | Last updated Jul 11, 2016

A Collaboration between Cute_Kitten and Personalias. It starts off as a trip to the zoo...and ends...well good or bad is a matter of point of view.

Chapter 1
Of Mini Coopers and Marijuana

“So why are we here, again?” I asked, sleepily, staring out of the front passenger window. We were in the zoo parking lot, the top of Skye’s mini cooper down so that Skye could recline back in the driver’s seat and stare up at the clouds.

“Because, Gavi-poo” Skye called me by one of her many pet names for me, “today’s a special day.” Her tightly braided blonde hair, with streaks of teal and pink dyed in, hung lazily over the headrest; they seemed to be relaxing as much as she was. Every part of her was just luxuriating in her current sloth. Typical Skye: All or nothing.

It was almost nine in the morning, which wouldn’t have been that bad if I had had more than three hours sleep. Today was a special day, alright. Skye had been planning this little date for the last month- at least as far back as spring break- which was more than a little unlike her.

Skye was a free spirit, alright. I almost didn’t think the word “plan” was in her vocabulary. When Skye wanted to do something, she did it: No questions asked, no repercussions considered, and no worries about the future. It’s not that she was super impulsive, exactly, but it was more like nothing in life could throw her a curveball.

In other words, she was nearly my exact opposite. Me, the good guy; the buddy who you could always depend on; the beautiful loser. Her wild, almost dreadlocked hair completely contrasted my own short trimmed dirty blonde-do.

On paper, we weren’t going to ever work out. Ever. She was a junior, her major still undecided. I was a lowly freshman, my major in political science already well declared pretty much since orientation.

I was the nervous wreck. The planner. The steady one. She was the adventurous one; the exciting one; the girl everyone wanted to be around. Oh yeah...and the stripper. What? Strippers can have boyfriends that aren’t giant ‘roid heads or douchebags with too much hair gel. That’s the stereotype, right?

Long story short, we met because one of my buddies was a dick and slipped my phone number into her thong at a club. I wasn’t even there, I swear. He figured it’d be a hilarious joke on one or both of us. For whatever reason, because Skye does what Skye’s gonna do, she actually called the number and started talking to me.

I told her “wrong number”, and she kept wanting to talk to me. I kept talking back, being too afraid to hang up on a pretty sounding girl. Then, after about an hour on the phone with me, she offered to take me on a date, and some dumb, stupid, impulsive, part of my brain made me say yes.

That’s partially why our relationship really worked. Being around Skye made me feel braver, and cooler, and more exciting, darn it! Even when I was at my worst or most self conscious, her own confidence was damn near infectious. I felt like a cooler, better version of myself; maybe not a stud, but at least I wasn’t a loser.

What did she get out of the deal? I don’t know. Or rather, I didn’t know. Really, who wants the safe guy? Maybe people who settle, but that wasn’t Skye. Skye got what she wanted, and for some reason, she wanted me right then, and that was enough for me.

What was so special about today- besides Skye having a predetermined destination in mind, I mean? For me, it was moving day. The Spring semester was over, and that meant it was time to move out of the dorms.

I would have paid for lodging over the Summer, but that Spring Break was when Skye had first suggested that I move in with her. I had never even been in Skye’s apartment, and she wanted me to move in. She wanted to take our relationship to the next level, and she knew she wanted that at least two months in advance. How could I say no?

So, we had been up all night, shoving all of my things into cardboard boxes for moving day in between bouts of...other things...intimate things And now, the plan, as Skye outlined it, was to spend the day at the zoo of all places, while a moving crew took all of my stuff out of my dorm room and moved it into her apartment.

No muss, no fuss, no additional stress on either of our part. And, because of the money she made, she could afford it.

“No,” I whined a little more than I had meant to, “I mean why are we at the zoo?”

“Because, honey,” she regarded me with her cool, blue eyes, “It’s a special day at the zoo, too.”

“Yeah?” I cocked an eyebrow. “Some kind of bargain or discount or something like that?”

“Something like that,” she winked at me. She was not going to tell me. No point in trying to find out more till she was ready. Skye was gonna do what Skye was gonna do. I was about to continue gazing out of the mini cooper’s window while we waited for the zoo to open, when I saw something by my feet.

I bent over and picked up the rainbow swirled glass object and turned it in my hand. I sniffed one end of it, picking up the pungent smell of burnt ashes and used up marijuana.

“Skye?” I asked, holding up the pot pipe.

“Yeah, Gavi?” Skye replied looking over to me holding the thing, accusingly, in my left hand.

“Why do you still have this?”

Skye looked over to me and took everything in, examining me cooly. Then she smiled lightly- smirked really- and took the pipe out of my hand.

“Hey,” she grinned. “I’ve been lookin’ for this. Thanks, honey boy.”

“Skye,” I protested, “I thought you told me you were giving this stuff up.”

“Well,” Skye shrugged, “I kinda did. I just stopped smoking it around you and didn’t tell you about it. That’s kind of the same thing, right?”

I felt my face get hot. “So are you still seeing other guys and just not telling me about it, too?!” I almost said. But the words choked in my throat.

Another long story short: When we were first dating, I was under the impression that we would only be seeing each other. She clearly had had different expectations. About a month and a half into our relationship, I found a lot of pictures and posts about her nightlife. There had been more than a few times when she had blown me off to go hang out with other guys.

So I confronted her about it in my dorm room one night, and started yelling at her. She just shrugged like it was no big deal. She didn’t even try to justify it one way or another. It was what it was. I had expected a shouting match and a breakup; but it devolved into me just telling her how hurt I was that she was going out with other guys but still referred to us as a couple, and ultimately breaking down into sobs like a toddler. I was just a lovesick little boy, and she was the more mature, world-wise, woman.

That’s when she held me, and shushed me, and said she was sorry and promised she wouldn’t hurt me again. She promised she’d stop seeing other guys as long as we were a couple. That was the first time she called me “Gavi-poo.”

“Seriously, Skye,” I prodded her, “that stuff bothers me. This isn’t Colorado you know. You could get arrested, or something.”

“Awww,” she cooed, “inn’t he cute, lookin’ out for me?” She reached past my lap and opened up the glove box of her car, taking out a little plastic bag filled with pot. She rolled some of the stuff between her fingers into a ball before stuffing it into the pipe.

Then she grabbed a lighter out of her pocket, lit the pipe and inhaled deeply.

“Skye,” I heard my voice shaking, uneasily. “Could you...I don’t know, at least put the top up? Somebody might see you and report you. People are starting to pull in.” It was true. Plenty of cars and vans were pulling into the parking lot, no doubt filled with families ready to go to the zoo.

“Oh, Gavi-” she smiled, puffing smoke into the air as she talked. “That’s not gonna happen, baby boy.”

“Why not?” I asked, beginning to fill with righteous indignation.

“Because,” she took another hit, and then let it out. “Nobody here cares.” She smiled, lackadaisically. “Everybody here at the zoo today is just gonna be going about their own business. They won’t care what we’re doing. But,” she added, “if it makes you happy,” she dumped the rest of the pipe out onto the pavement. I felt my throat unclench a little bit.

People were piling out of their cars and headed towards the front entrance of the zoo. Almost opening time. Not as many families as I imagined, actually. It was mostly young couples, like me and Skye; some a little older, some a little younger.

They went in pairs, holding hands towards the front entrance; two by two; like Noah’s Arc, or Mormons. Clearly, this was some kind of ladies’ day or something. Almost all of the women walked with a certain spring in their step, leading their boyfriends and husbands towards the front gates. Was it couples day at the zoo, or something? How odd.

“Whelp,” Skye stretched as she opened the driver’s side door. “Looks like this is our cue, Gavi-poo. Let’s go.”

I got out, and she offered me her hand. I took her palm and looked up at her: She was naturally an inch or two taller than me, but the difference was exaggerated when she wore her platform heels. My nose barely peaked over her shoulders when we were both standing next to each other.

“Aren’t you going to put the top up?” I motioned to the mini cooper. “Somebody might steal it.”

“Who’s going to steal a car from a zoo?” she asked, condescendingly. “This is a family place.”

“But what if it rains or something?” I pointed up towards the sky.

“Naw,” Skye corrected me. “Those little puffball clouds aren’t rain clouds, honey. But you are so cute when you worry about me.” she pinched my cheek, and I looked down at the ground in a vain attempt to hide my embarrassed, blushing, smile. Only Skye could make me feel good by calling me cute.

Feeling a little bit defeated, I let her lead the way and we joined the waiting throng of other couples headed to the zoo for some kind of “very special day”.



End Chapter 1

Of Leopards and Their Spots

by: personalias | Complete Story | Last updated Jul 11, 2016


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