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SHORT STORY

The Invisible Boyfriend Wears a Leather Jacket

A Short Story By Sharon Dale Wexler

The invisible boyfriend is here to stay.

Here being in her ear telling her how to do things, telling her to wear cat eye makeup, messy hair and what clothes he can see her body better in.

She keeps the invisible boyfriend where he belongs. In her wallet. That's where she found him as a picture insert. She tried taking it out, but the cardboard stuck to the plastic.

When she ripped a corner, he said, "Don't do that!"

“Why not?” she asked.

“It hurts,” he said.

The invisible boyfriend made the cutest face when she hurt him. He scrunched up his nose, a slope and stuck out his tongue.

She did not have a boyfriend.  She bought the wallet and brought it to school. No one could see the invisible boyfriend, but when she walked home from school, she talked to him. It probably looked like she was talking to herself.

In the homeroom, she showed off her new hairdo. Nick the moody, rich boy wearing a leather jacket like he wanted to be loved, did not say anything. She had a crush on him since she moved there in November. He was shorter than most girls in their grade but because his father was the builder of cesspools they had a house with a built-in swimming pool. He was shy but had a minion speak for him. Did he really need someone to speak for him?

She said she didn't care, she did not have a boyfriend, but she cares. Nick is rich; his lips pouted, pointed and pursed. The minion asks her on a first date. She feels because of the invisible boyfriend she gets noticed. Even though no one could see him, they are seeing his effect on her. Nick sent her a message with the minion asking her out after school. They had never even spoken. Without the minion how would he have approached?

The rich boy carried a guitar in the school hallways although no one thought he could play.

He waited in his leather jacket at dismissal. They said nothing on the walk to his house. He had other ways of expressing himself with his body that was musical. He waved to a person in a car and said, "Neighbor." The leather jacket buckles, moaning to be touched.

Nick had the rarity of keys in his pocket. As soon as they let themselves into his house, she saw what all the hoopla was about. He didn't just have a bedroom; he had a suite with a bathroom and a kitchenette. He had a snack re-fridge, a bar and a bong layout on his desk.

He turned on the TV to cartoons, she said she usually watched soaps, she did not know anyone who watched The Popeye Hour and she didn't know where to sit, so she stood holding her purse and wearing her coat.

He sat down on the bedspread with bolsters. He told her to take off her jacket and put down her bag. She wanted to be popular although she didn't know what that would mean, so she followed his voice, which sounded like it was coming from speakers in the ceiling.

She didn’t know why she’d been invited. They had never talked. She might be beautiful one day, but the invisible boyfriend told her that date was still to be determined.

He asked whether she would lie down with him on the bed that looked like a couch.

She went to her purse and looked for her wallet.

“What are you doing,” he asked.

“I have a boyfriend,” she said. He might let her leave. He might ask her what she was doing with him if she had a boyfriend. He might even suggest himself as her boyfriend.

But all he did was pout, point and purse his lips and grab her arms and pull her down onto the bed.

“I have the same picture,” he said,” Come lay down. We can compare pictures after. He was getting prickly. His breath smelled, she told him. He popped a tic tack, purse lips opened. And hid her wallet. He worried about his breath still smelling. She felt a little betrayed. She never imagined the picture so far from someone real. The invisible boyfriend made the cutest face when she kissed him. He scrunched up his nose, a slope and stuck out his tongue.

She sucked his tongue so hard, always remember the kiss.

The invisible boyfriend was in her ear telling her suck harder. But no matter how hard she sucked, it would never be enough for Nick.

Everyone in school has a boyfriend

“Wow”, Nick said, “There’s a lot wrong with you but kissing ain’t one of them.”

After the experience, he released her and performed the ritual in reverse, handing over her wallet and catching a hair from the skin around her mouth. The invisible boyfriends says he thinks he hears her mother calling her home. He warns many girls had been traumatized after they had hoped to be Nick’s girlfriend. They had been pierced and pulled backwards.

“If I am not home by sundown, “ she said. And released herself from the kiss Nick hoped to catch at the door. She left Pop eye to catch the skull of something and rip them from their bodies.

The invisible boyfriend felt like a Holy Man, on the walk home, singing praises of her kisses. Telling her kisses are wasted on Nick.

She told the Invisible boyfriend, “Shut up.” for once. She had a sense that the real boyfriend could never live up to the invisible one.

She felt like a tree that was trimmed the next day at school. When she came up to him, Nick looked at the sun. The others that were always surrounding him, usually the hall walkers - they wanted something like weed or better grades or gossip. She said hello but Nick acted as if he did not know her.

After school, Nick waited with intense tingles in the middle of the sidewalk. He played with a pack of tic tacs.

She had already danced.



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