Soul Kiss: The Confessions of a Homoerotic Vampire
Click on image to enlarge.
by Alexander Renault
Category: Erotica/Erotic Fantasy
Description: Soul Kiss: The Confessions of a Homoerotic Vampire is the tale of Cuthbert, an immortal, gay, and sexually ravenous member of the undead. Historically accurate, Soul Kiss tells an enthralling story set against backdrops of differing cultures from ancient Egypt to the Greco-Roman era, from medieval Cornwall to Civil War Philadelphia, as Cuthbert searches for identity through erotic pleasure. From musings on existential questioning to the value of immortality itself, Alexander Renault, author of Queerer than You Think!, guides his reader through a gripping maze of passion, lust, and sexual obsession. The tale of Cuthbert's journey ends in modern America at a dwelling on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean. After a series of emotionally empty sexual encounters, Cuthbert must face the truth of what he has for so long been searching--who he is and what it means to be both gay and immortal. The renowned contemporary poet Antler says Alexander Renault's work shows a "heightened eros awareness." We think you'll agree.
eBook Publisher: Renaissance E Books/Sizzler, 2004
eBookwise Release Date: January 2005
21 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [129 KB]
Reading time: 82-115 min.
The reflection of the sun off the aluminum rowboat was blinding. I snapped the thick chain between two fingers, a quick twist of my wrist and it broke, falling to the sand. An immortal preparing for death, I shifted so that once again the reflection of the sun met my eyes. A strange meditation. I am not sure how long I stood there, thoughts of my Mawgan flowing in and out of my consciousness like dreams during a childhood fever-even after thousands of years I still recall a fever from childhood and the euphoria with the aches in my body and euphoric feeling of floating in my head. The back of my mother's worried hand on my forehead.
Forever is longer than you could imagine. It can only be grasped, even slightly, after several thousand years. The constant change of the world, your constant need to keep up with the fluctuations, the tiredness that sets in. Certainly not a physical pain but we grow so weary in our minds. In my case at least. I never had anyone else to ask.
Such a beautiful day but I have to go. Alas, after all this, the end reaches us all.
* * * *
Perhaps oblivion is the only peace we can know. I walked beneath the hunter's moon tonight, the full moon of October. It is quieter now that the air has cooled and the beachcombers have given up for another year. I walked along the edge in bare feet, the water rushing over them. It burns. I cannot stand it for more than a minute or two.
Tonight a memory stirred but slipped away again. Serves me right for all the times I have disappeared on people, things being as illusive as they are. I listened to the ocean waves and found comfort in their rhythm, the old song of the earth, the repetition of eternity. I felt cradled in its rhythm and thought of my mother, Uta, for the first time in millennia. I miss her. Even the calloused hands, her smile, her laughter. I do miss her so much.
Perhaps this record is a way for me to understand how I ended up here, near a shoreline that can kill. Like a snake that never sheds, I have always feared forgetting Mawgan. Funny to think I could fear anything, especially the loss of such a memory.
* * * *
Chapter One. The Temple of My Father's Pleasure
My name is Cuthbert. Oh, you may laugh at the sound of my name as many have done in your century. This does not discourage me in the least. I have been known by many names but most were chosen to help me blend into the background of my temporary era. You see, I hate to draw attention to myself.
A chosen name should never be taken lightly. It may designate how you will be remembered by friends, lovers, or enemies, and how you leave your mark. Your signature.
Everyone is given a name at birth, the first reflecting your originality, the middle name being perhaps your alias, the last name a mark of your lineage. My kind are more mercurial and our egos are not so fragile. We often grow tired of the same moniker over the centuries and prefer to adapt more to what you would consider modern times.
Alas, I contradict myself so soon. I found an exception--a name I have kept for a long time. I have kept the name since the thirteenth-century. Whether it is to help me recall or forget a moment in my special history I will not yet disclose. Self-punishment becomes self-perpetuation if given enough practice.
Curious? Well, it remindsw me of someone I knew long ago in Cornwall.
Many languages have passed over my tongue and my fingers have documented a moment here or there in papyrus, stone, quill and ink, typewriters and electronic keyboards. Some might imagine my head bursting with information from over the ages and I do entertain an incredibly vast fund of knowledge. However, as anyone who has lived in a foreign country for any length of time will attest, you quickly adopt a culture's words and intonations, verbal idiosyncrasies, those flutters of the lips and tongue. The grand morphemics and allomorphs, syncopation and subtle rhythms of our mouths and the air rushing through our nasal cavities. The Irish brogue, the glottal skip of the English, the melody of spoken French, the guttural friction emanating from the throat of a Russian.
We adapt. Otherwise, how could we ever live unnoticed?
* * * *
Before I tell you of my origins, allow me to make a proclamation: I abhor violence. Human beings, of which I had once been, those people who believe that they are awake and that we are mere shadows (fools, all), are of the most violent breed even in comparison to the lowest animal realm. I may on occasion have to take a life to survive but I can also grant immortality at will (though this is extremely rare). I will stop a human heart from beating but it is never over a silly jealousy, pocket change to feed my brain poppies, or to assert my authority. There is no sadistic need in me. I take my sustenance like a cat takes a bird, or a serpent steals an egg. It simply must be. Human violence is vulgar and offends any semblance of good sense and taste.
Not that I yearn for your approval--perish the thought! I learned centuries ago that explanations for "what is" are terrifically lacking. Humans demand answers to everything while hearing little. To explain oneself is to seek praise. I need no approval. But yet I ramble on.
My old friend Walt once said to me, "Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself."
* * * *
The chair I now sit upon is old, at least in your frame of reference. The blowing breeze sings through my course hair. Although I do not age, it has taken some gray since ... well, since Cornwall.
I can smell the sea right now, that lovely odor of brine and decay. My kind do not prefer sea water. Sea salt invades and burns our bodies because they do not function like yours with the ability to repel all unwanted particles. When you house a tiny piece of wood, a "sliver," the human body will eventually expel the foreign substance over a period of time because that is how an organism remains healthy. Our bodies do not expel particles of wood nor glass. We must be painstakingly observant of our skin lest we begin to look diseased, calling more attention to ourselves. Our skins heal quickly when marked ("wounded" would be a misleading word) so we manage via vigilance.
We do not sweat, and even if we did you would never taste salt upon our flesh. And yet some of us, the Old Ones, are inexplicably drawn to human salt. A curious prognostication on my part, is it not? Of course you would not understand much of this. Not yet.
Salt and moisture keep us alive although too much of either could potentially be to our utter ruin. Salt is our opium. Just a taste and we want more. This can proceed until it completely consumes us if we are not careful. But of course we are careful. Only the careful survive.
* * * *
The most powerful woman in the world disappeared after I was born during the time of the New Kingdom. This was when the land began to drastically change. The Temple of Karnak had already been constructed several hundred years before my birth, well past the age of the succession of kings, but I was fortunate enough to be alive during the great reign of Queen Nefertiti.
King Akhenaten was a religious revisonist but it was his wife who spearheaded political rule in our great land that was destined to become a superpower in the world. Akhenaten and Nefertiti renounced all gods and dedicated themselves, and thus the entire land and all its people, to a single entity. It was Aten the sun god. In doing so they drove a wave of fear through the hierarchy of priests who enjoyed their power as much as anyone. With their lost power came a great carnal wave over the land like locusts let lose among the fields.
Queen Nefertiti was a brilliant political player. Modern history knows nothing of her origins but I am telling you she was the daughter of a politician who taught his daughter to wield her female power like a blazing sword. All her life hummed with her search for power and after wedding King Akhenaten in the city of Amarna she blessed the world with six daughters. You will sometimes see paintings and busts of Queen Nefertiti, her beautiful and gallant face sturdy and proud. She had an occasional facial tic but to my knowledge no one has ever seen a statue twitch.
Some of these artworks are false. Yes, she was a superior leader but in ancient art her left eye is not seen. The incredible reach of her power was symbolized in the all-seeing clearness of half her vision. Unfortunately, one day Queen Nefertiti disappeared. No one has ever found record of her fate--nothing written, no tombs, no stories passed down through generations. There are some things even I shall never know.
In 800 BC. Egypt cracked in two. Before long our nation was invaded and ruled by Persians, Assyrians, and Libyans. It would never be reunited under a wondrous One. I do not recall what happened next.
* * * *
I only faintly recall details of my childhood. It was in the Age of Dust, after the waters consumed the previous tenants, or so I was led to believe. They were said to have been ingenious, those people before us, but they took most of their secrets with them, submerged forever beneath the waves. Such a terrible fate to be washed from the face of the earth, all the lost knowledge. Maybe those who know too much cannot live and are wiped clean of the Wheel. Perhaps it is the sweet odor of their decay still emanating from the sea.
My mother's name was Uta. That is how I recall it. Funny, to have forgotten the name of one's mother. I do recall her hands were rough and calloused and yet she had the softest touch. My father's name was Myet. He was the most handsome of all our men. After all this time, and with so much memory of my origins faded, I can recall as clear as a starlit sky the face, body, and voice of my father.
He did well in the ranks because of his physical strength but especially his voice. Although he generally emitted a kind, almost purr with wife and child, it could quickly come booming, signaling that all would be wise to pay heed. Although he did not have a bad temperament, he could affect enough anger to protect his position and make sure his people did their work well and in a timely manner befitting those builders of royal chambers. My father's voice could unsettle dust from farther away than you might believe possible.
He always taught me to not be afraid. But if fear did creep into your thoughts, the hair on your body coming alive, sweat dripping from your back, he taught that you should never allow your fear to show. If you felt a vibration in your throat brought on from anxiety, which might bring even a single note of apprehension or quiver to your voice, then you do not speak. Not until your breathing returns to normal and you can act exactly as you wish and never react out of fear. Funny, the lessons of hunting for food rival those of a hunt for sex. Timing will tell your fate.
My father never knew while I was growing up that I would one day use his lessons to become a notoriously unbridled temple whore. I learned that desire not only breeds impulsiveness but boils fear to the surface of its recipient. Control, and not fear, makes an exquisite whore, even when that control is manifested by the illusion of giving it up completely. Although it would appear that a leather rope around a man's neck is held by a loose handle, the carnal leash remains as strongly attached at both ends.
I recall my father's overpowering torso, the muscles of his back and legs, all covered in brown, curly hair. Not an unattractive pelt--the lines of his hair were sharp as the edge of a knife. The fur of his flat stomach held a beautiful pattern that spread over the huge muscles of his chest in beautifully painted circles, brushing the outer edge of each large nipple. He would flex his chest for me and I would giggle and laugh as he bounced them for me, alternating left and right.
I do not believe I have ever encountered more powerful legs than my father's. Oh, men of this century might harass their bodies with weights and pulleys, and drugs to increase thickness and weight, but they could never compare to a body that works all day in the sun building temples. The people worship the gods of the temples but I have yet to see a god who compares with the bodies of those men who build such structures. My father was the strongest of all the slave leaders and I worshipped him.
He did injure his back once, a strain sustained when a slave slipped and dropped a large stone they were carrying up a small incline. My father had to rest for several days before returning to his duties. What I recall most from that time is his inability to lift his arm, and thus he needed help in the bath from me and my mother. I scrubbed the grime and sweat from his back. Soon my hands began trembling. My mother saw this and quietly, permanently, dismissed me from the bathing chamber.
My mother grew uneasy as I grew older. She saw how I loved to run my hands all over my father's neck, stomach, and chest. She knew me all along. But as I reached my older days I quickly learned not to touch men too much, or for too long, lest you draw undesired attention to oneself or, worse yet, one's family.
The work of a slave is hard and my father's body seemed to grow stronger as the years passed when other men grew weary. It seemed as though his voice grew lower and coarse and later he had no time for me. Being a temple boy was an important religious vocation but he would have preferred that I be a guard, possibly work in the personal entourage of our messiah du jour. My only regret was that I never got to see my father grow old.
As my voice began to change others looked at me in stares lasting just a few moments longer than I had been used to. Men and women glanced in my direction and particularly when we had the season of intense heat and I wore little clothing.