She told him time and time again: “Don’t turn around. Don’t look at me when I’m asleep at night.” Of course, she could never tell her new beau de la nuit why she was so vehement about this request, that she was, somewhere deep inside, still suffering from the trauma of having been Eurydice in another life. A life that still felt all too close to her. Inescapable even, as she could often feel the phantom (and fetid) breath of Satan breathing on her neck. It was an especially hot sort of breath, the kind that could only be had from, say, eating an entire jar of red chili peppers. But that was just the way of one’s mouth when he was the God of the Underworld.
And as that god, Hades had a healthy appetite not only for tampering with generally good people’s lives, but also for young girls (because no one loves a smooth, supple piece more than an aging and irrelevant god with a scepter dick–how do you think he got his wife, Persephone, after all?). Eurydice was such a piece once. Freshly married to a man she, like so many, was duped into believing had guts. Gumption. At least that was how he played his music. In the end, of course, Orpheus was but a liar who lied almost as well as he played the lyre, for he did not truly love Eurydice, just as Plato said (and as we know, whatever Plato says goes). If he did, he wouldn’t have been willing to go on living without her. Would have rather died in the instant he saw her face fading away back into the darkness. What’s more, had he loved her–and had faith in that love–he would have kept on walking just as he was told to do by Hades without turning around to make sure she was there. How could he believe she was not? That she wouldn’t follow him out of the depths of hell to save herself and their marriage after being killed before her time?
Oh how she hated Orpheus now. Stupid and untrusting Orpheus. She couldn’t fathom where he had gotten this paranoia from–he was the son of, Apollo and Calliope, a pair of deities lesser known for their smiting antics than others. Why couldn’t he simply give the unwavering credence in their love that she had? Or, once had. Before he ruined it all with his perfidious head-turning.
In her twenty-first century guise as “Uri” (a name she claimed was derived from Ursila to others), she couldn’t shake this contempt for seeing any lover of hers turn their head toward her. Least of all at night, in the intimate tableau of a bed. And it never failed, of course, every lover she collected seemed to end up wanting to turn toward the side she favored sleeping on so that the permutation looked like this:
As opposed to something more like this:
A position that would allow her the desired luxury of turning on the side she preferred without being seen by her beloved of the moment–in this case, a hairy man named Charles. “Charlie,” as she had taken to calling him in order to accrue greater intimacy in a short span of time. Because the illusion of closeness to men was the lifeblood that kept her looking as beautiful in the most painterly sense possible that she could. And even though Charlie was amenable to this kind of “just add water” intimacy, he had the nastiest habit of them all of wanting to turn toward her at night to “admire” her. She couldn’t blame him, naturally. For she was undeniably a sight to behold with her long brown locks cascading like a waterfall over her two perfectly shaped in their bulbousness tits. But still, she had asked Charlie to respect her fucking wishes, helmed from that unforgettable past life moment of PTSD, and she expected him to do just that.
Alas, he could only go on abiding her request for so long before he finally proved himself to be just like Orpheus. They were all just like Orpheus. Cads. Convictionless cads. This was precisely why her grand move at the inevitable end of every relationship was to, the moment she felt them looking at her in the night, let her glowing alabaster skin flicker, showing them her rapidly aging corpse and internal skeleton in concert like some sort of Doria Gray revealing her true self after so many centuries spent recovering from that terrible instant when Orpheus turned around to glance at her, appraise her presence.
At the sight of this inexplicable apparition, they would all predictably scream, jump out of bed and head for the hills, so to speak. But it served them all right, Uri felt. For so blatantly dishonoring her very simple and specific demand. Why couldn’t they just serve this one request? Was it so goddamned difficult for men to listen to women in this regard? To take anything they said in earnest as authoritative? In a sense, Uri had to admit that very little seemed to have changed in the landscape of the twenty-first century U.S. from the ancient “B.C.” times of Greece. She sensed a form of oppression and subjugation in men even more frightening than the one she had known in her initial lifetime. Its insidiousness more palpable because it was forced to be “suppressed” for the sake of offering the illusion of political correctness. Of a “caring” about women in a way that connoted the coveted label of “feminist.”
But they were none of them feminists. All, instead more like a synagogue of Satan filled with worshippers “who say they are feminists and are not,” men who promise they won’t turn around and look at you when you tell them not to, but then go right ahead and do it anyway. Well, Uri was done with this. Century, that is. Thus, she sought an “oracle” in the East Village who, for $300, assured her that she could banish her back to the black hole of 500-800 B.C. Anywhere in that timeframe would do, Uri told the woman wearing a turban with, incidentally, an Acropolis print on it. Lacking in credibility as the woman appeared, Uri would roll the dice at any price to once more become Eurydice. Even if it meant crawling into the dumpster her “oracle” insisted was a portal to another realm. All the woman asked was that Uri did not look behind her as she guided her into the alley at a deliberate five paces behind.