UNCONSUMATED BED.

Catalina waits for Arturo to come, she has been prepared, told how to lay and what to expect (to a degree) and to wait and be ready. Her attendants have left after much fussing and tidying and words of advice. She lies on the four poster bed, the hard mattress beneath her, white overstuffed pillows, staring at her feet, wiggling her toes, scratching her nose. She hears voices, the door opens and he comes in followed by others, he looks at her shyly, looks away, his friends whisper, make suggestions, he laughs, they guffaw, then seeing it's time to go they make their farewells, and leave the room, closing the door behind them with a click. She looks at him, thin, tall, pale as moonlight, clean shaven with his mop of dark hair, standing there. He looks at her lying on the

waits. her slim fingers childlike in their smallness. her lips. his heels feeling the silk sheet. taps his hairless chest. he doesn’t hear. hair dressed just so. his buttocks supported. hopes. ringed. she opens to him like a flower. her other upon his narrow back. What to say? He coughs. her hands together as if about to pray. .bed. She smiles and taps the place beside her on the bed. his wedding ring on the finger next to another gold one of smaller size. the parted hair. He climbs into bed. He studies her eyes. he allows her to move him nearer. She gently pulls him to her. the thin brows. She mouths words. senses the hard base. she smiles. small breasts just visible. he hesitates. feels her hand upon his wrist. nightgown open at her soft neck. He settles uneasy between her thighs.

nothing stirs. She folds her legs together. he makes motion. unfucked. gazes at him sideways on. Then he ups and runs out the door which closes with a click. sees his eyes sponge like soak her in. her knees touching. his eyes shut tight. staring at her eyes. her hands at her sides. closes his eyes. She waits. coughs. pale. his breathing deepens. but he stiffens. No sex with him. her buttocks warm against the silk. his eyebrows rise. no consummation. no red rose plucked. moves off. the sparkle. no virgin bleed. she thinks. relax. her eyes stare. the marriage bed unfed. untoched. looks away. candle light bright there. his profile. She lays there. waiting.hands either side of her head. lies still stares at the curtains about the bed. She waits. his lips mouth sounds. the colour in the candle’s light. her small breasts soften. becomes arched. . her knees bent.

unused. Was that it? they whisper. coughs. was that the consummation? She lies silent. too soon? She sighs. splutters. unloved or was it just too much. gazing at the sky and coin like moon. none but whispers from behind the door. soft conversation.her ears sharp for sounds. .

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