He was making that noise. The one he always tried not to make when he was close. Tonight, though, the wine had stuffed Kit’s head full of cotton. He couldn’t hear himself grunting and squeaking at the same time. Theresa was on top with her eyes closed. He didn’t know it, but every time she opened them, she would glance at the clock on the nightstand. He let out one final caribou call, and it was over.
Theresa hopped off Kit and headed for the walk-in closet, covering her small butt cheeks with her bony hands as she went. She grabbed her fluffy, mint robe off the back of the door and slid it on.
“Wow.” Kit said, “I mean, wow.”
Panting, he grabbed the sheet and wiped his brow, expectantly.
“I mean, wasn’t that… how was it for you?” He said as he slowly raised the pitch of his voice.
“What time will you be home from work tomorrow?” she said as she threw some clothes out of the closet, the slide of the hangers muffling her voice.
Kit looked down at his stiff penis, then his hairy chest, and answered, “Six.”
“Ok well I need you to take Zeek to practice after, and then on your way, I need you to grab some milk, and coffee, and diapers.”
Each item on the list accompanied by a white shirt or sock, flying out of the closet.
“And don’t forget to buy the Huggies, not Luvs, I know the Luvs are cheaper, but they always leak. Last time you forgot to buy the right kind, and then Bailey had a blow-out while I was at the Pinner’s conference. I had to throw away that cute dress my mom bought her for her birthday. I’m planning on meatloaf for dinner, but I need eggs for that, so you’ll need to buy them from the store. Get the brown ones, not the white ones, the brown one’s are better. I’ve gotta wash Zeek’s uniform. Make sure he wears the right socks. Ok?” As her words increased in speed, the clothes began to fly higher, tracing a rainbow over Kit’s lingering erection. He watched as the clothes continued to arch and land at the foot of the bed in a rhythmic beat which accompanied her stream of anxiety. Kit wondered if she had heard him, so he asked again, “Wasn’t that amazing? I was hoping you’d be a little more…relaxed.”
“The sex? Yeah, of course. Did you hear me?” She responded distantly from inside the closet. Yeah, the sex, he thought.
“What are you doing?” He said, raising his voice. He opened his mouth and tried to yawn to clear his ears.
“Are you even listening to me?” she said, popping her head out the closet for a brief moment and then popping back in. “You keep doing this, Kit. You keep not listening to me. I feel like I have to do everything.”
“I’m listening—” he said, “But what the hell are you doing?!” He stretched his jaw and wiggled it from side to side with a finger simultaneously shaking in his ear.
“Laundry. I’m separating the whites. What the hell did you think I’m doing?”
Kit reached underneath the covers and felt on his pubic bone. It was still hot.
“Nothing,” he said with a downward slope in his voice. “I just thought we could lay here a bit and just…”
“Kit,” Theresa snapped, “The diapers? Do you want me to write it down? I can’t lie down. I’ve gotta get this done by tomorrow. I have a Room Mother’s meeting at six, so I need you to remember all this.”
“No, I’ve got it,” he said, moving towards the pile of clothes. He picked up an undershirt from the pile and wiped her off his thighs. “Luvs.”
“You’re disgusting.” She commented, “At least I’m washing that. And no, Huggies, Kit, we need Huggies. Just think of it this way: You can always hug someone, you can’t always love them. Huggies, always.”
“Hugs without Luvs. Got it.” He said, searching for his pajama pants.
“I’ll write it down,” she condescended, coming out of the closet and scooping the whites in her thin arms.
She left the room and Kit stood pant-less, watching her drop socks on her way out. He went into the closet to find pants, but as fate would have it, his eyes caught the white dress she liked to wear on special occasions, the one with the lace back, the one she had worn on their anniversary. He took it off the hanger. He examined the label, Dry Clean Only, it said. He heard Theresa slam the dryer door open as it hit the wall. I’ve gotta move that over more, he thought.
His mind flooded with the stressful thoughts of tomorrow. The ever-growing list of things to get done, the diapers, and milk, and the something that he had to get from the store. He took the dress in both hands and twisted it like a towel waiting to be snapped. He held it taut. He held it with intention. He held it stiff and unappreciatively. And instinctively, Kit moved that pretty dress in a flossing motion between his legs, rubbing and wiping, letting it soak up all the evidence from five minutes before.
“Coffee.” He said aloud while he continued to floss.
“And something else…” He smiled.
His pantswere in the corner of the closet next to his shoe rack. Fuck it, he thought. And he slid the dress back on its hanger and slid his pants on. He made his way back to his side of the bed and waited there, watching the door, wondering why Theresa was taking so long. He turned off the light and rolled on his side, watching the clock, counting the seconds. He yawned and his ears popped, amplifying the sound of Theresa muttering “I do everything.” He listened to the washing machine rumble and Theresa’s footsteps up and down the stairs as she collected dropped socks from the floor.