This is what may have happened after "Sunday in the Park". (An earlier story posted with Leviticus.)
I hope Suzi still has a bit of red ink for the next story – she consumed several liters on this one!
They walked along an asphalt path, through thin stands of beech. He did not look back, but the click of her sandal heels made her presence clear.
She felt more panicked than she had on the bench. Who was this man? Where was he leading her? And most of all, why in God's name was she continuing to follow him?
They came to a bar-terrace, with its twenty-odd tables mostly occupied. There were couples of all ages; some of the younger ones with children; a few singles. Many had finished lunch, and were chatting over coffee. For the first time, he turned to her, and gestured for her to sit. He moved away into the bar.
He returned with a beer and a mineral water. He put her glass in front of her, and sat opposite her.
He studied her for a long moment. She could feel his eyes moving over her, detailing her: her hair; the features of her face (long, long halt on her eyes, and again on her mouth); down her neck and the slopes of her shoulders to the tops of her breasts above her light summer dress.
Several times she raised her eyes to his. She was sure that he knew she was returning his gaze, but he ignored her, continuing to dissect her and indifferent to her reaction. It was that indifference that made it impossible to keep her eyes up.
"Why did he abandon you?"
first words took her from confusion to despair
She had known that David had left her, there at that park bench. She had even presumed that he had left her for good. Still, and despite mulling on David's act for the whole day, she had managed to elude the consequences.
"I asked you a question."
She raised her eyes to his, trying to focus on his voice. The emptiness filled her and overwhelmed her, preventing her from interpreting his words.
"It is very rare. I'm not sure I've ever seen such a thing. He could have sold you, or given you to someone. He had to be extraordinarily angry with you to abandon you like that."
He fell silent, still watching her. She did not cry, but her eyes brimmed with water and a distant look. Her head weaved very slightly and very slowly from side to side. She sniffled.
She drank her water.
Again she glanced at him, as though expecting him to continue. He remained impassive.
He finished his beer, and stood. "Good luck." He turned to leave.
"Wait! Please!" Her heart was racing. She was going to be alone.
He turned back to her. "David called this morning to be sure I'd received the key. He asked me to come by some time in the afternoon and release you. That's all. He did not actually say he was abandoning you, but from your reaction, I assume that you drew the same conclusion. I am curious as to why. You don't have to tell me, but then I don't have to stay here, either. Are you going to answer me?"
"Yes! Please don't leave me here."
He sat again. And again fell silent, waiting.
She licked her lips. Her hands were on the table, her fingers laced. One thumb rubbed back and forth on the other.
"I don't really know. He didn't say."
He did not react, waiting for more.
"He said he loved me, even while he was ... abandoning ... me. He ... ... I don't know."
"I'm not asking you what he said. I'm asking you for your own opinion. I will not accept 'I don't know.'"
She uncrossed and re-crossed her legs, unclasped and re-clasped her hands. She looked at his eyes. She exhaled loudly, and her head drooped.
"He wasn't strong enough. I ... ... He couldn't handle the situation, so he bailed out."
"I will give you one more chance. One. Listen to the question, and answer it, not a different one. Take a little time to collect your thoughts. My question is 'Why did David abandon you?'. The key word is 'abandon'. As opposed to 'sell' or 'give'. Why did he ABANDON you?"
Now a tear did roll down her cheek. "To hurt me. To get even with me. I hurt him. Bad, I guess. This is his revenge. I ... ... I can't live 'free'. I can't."
There was a smile at the edges of his mouth, but his eyes did not smile.
"You're being awfully shallow. It's your life we're talking about, you should think a little more seriously about it."
For the first time her look was a little askance.
"No," he continued, "you still haven't thought this through. You won't be 'free' for long. You can't live alone, as you've just said. So you'll belong to the first man who wants you. Whoever."
They sat in silence a moment. Her anxiety quickly gave way to fear.
"No, I hadn't thought. Oh, Christ! What if I run into a real jerk? A redneck cowboy, or something like that? Dammit, what has that son-of-a-bitch done to me?"
"Oh, there are all kinds of possibilities. How about a nasty guy who'll beat the hell out of you, then let you recover just enough to start over again? Or the opposite: a guy who doesn't understand what you are … who tries to treat you like any other woman?"
She did not answer.
"Or another David," he continued. "He was never made to be a dom. He tried to do it because he loved you. He was a lousy dom, he couldn't really handle you, and you both made a mess of things. There's a real good chance you'll do the same dance again."
Her head hung low. She raised her eyes to him. "Could I have something more to drink please? I haven't got any money."
"When I'm satisfied with you, you'll get another drink. Sing for your supper. You still haven't really told me why David is trashing you. He must be very angry."
"What do you want me to say? I don't understand it -- he still loves me, I'm sure of that. Maybe he didn't think it through either. Or maybe ... no, I really don't understand it."
She tried to sit up straight, but the effort only made her look all the more forlorn. "And practically speaking, what do I do now? I can't go back to David's apartment. The next time it won't be an out-of-the-way park bench, it'll be something in the middle of a shopping mall, something really embarrassing, to be sure there's no third time. No, I can't go back. ... I have no money, no ID, no place to go. Oh, Christ!"
He said nothing.
"Did David maybe tell you what he was going to do with my things?"
"Could you maybe give me a hand?"
"Why should I? Why should I not just let David's plans run their course? I'm not really inclined to give aid and assistance to a girl who's just admitted to ruining her lover's existence."
"You can't just leave me here!"
"Of course I can."
"Please? Please. I'll do whatever you want."
As soon as the words were said, her head jerked up. She looked to see if the words had registered on him as they had on her. He was smiling a wolf's smile at her.
"Are you asking me to take possession of you? ... Don't answer too quickly. Think about it ..."
But there was no reason for delay.