The story is told by Benjamin Bailey Bradford III the lowest person in the hierarchy.
For a while I was unsure if my life and marriage were in the toilet or if everything is unfolding as it should. My friends are sexually molesting my wife and it seems that’s ok with me. Everyone seems happy with the status quo and the new corporation that we formed looks like it’s about to succeed beyond our wildest expectations and the reason for everything that has happened seems to be a linear dominate hierarchy. But I am getting ahead of myself. To make sense of everything I need to start at the beginning, which includes an explanation of what a linear dominate hierarchy is.
A dominance hierarchy is the organization of individuals in a group that occurs when competition for resources leads to aggression.
Schjelderup-Ebbe, who studied the often-cited example of the pecking order in chickens, found that such social structures lead to more stable flocks with reduced aggression among individuals. In other words everyone knows his place and doesn’t buck the system.
Dominance hierarchies can be despotic or linear. In a despotic hierarchy, only one individual is dominant, while the others are all equally submissive. In a linear hierarchy, for example each individual dominates all individuals below him and not those above him.
Dominance hierarchies occur in most social animal species that normally live in groups, including primates.
I Benjamin Bailey Bradford the third have such a group of friends that collected or perhaps a better description would be coalesced due to proximity to each other. In other words we lived in the same neighborhood for the better part of the eighteen years that it took for us to grow from infant to high school graduate and for better or worse the six of us remained a group with the exception of a few short hiatuses where a member or two would pursue other avenues of interest, but would eventually return to the flock.
Our flock, which for the most part, was dominated by Eddie MacMillan. A dominance that was more like benevolent dictator than angry overlord and his dominance was rarely contested during elementary and middle school and never questioned among our group during high school. Eddie was and always has been the bigger and stronger of our ensemble. Perhaps it was because he was a year, almost two years older that the rest of us, but even without that advantage I think he would have been the alpha of our group simply because of his size. In seventh grade he was over six feet and weighed more than two hundred pounds.
If Eddie was the dominate male, I, in this gathering of eclectic individuals, was the submissive, the chicken at the bottom of the pecking order. And it’s true I got more than my share of nuggies, Indian burns, weggies and arm punches, but I was never grossly mistreated or teased or humiliated outside of the gathering of six and many times I was aggressively defended by Eddie and the others when malevolent individuals accosted or belittled me. It wasn’t often, but occasionally when someone who didn’t know that Eddie was my protector would accost me and it would get back to Eddie. At which time Eddie would explain to the individual, who’s feet would be dangling in the air, that he should re-think his position with regard to threatening the little geeky guy.
Once a large Neanderthal transfer student who was trying to assert his dominance, informed me that he was going to make me his bitch. I wasn’t sure what “being his bitch” entailed, but I didn’t like the sound of it and I made sure Eddie and the others heard about it. Eddie bested the ruffian, but not without sustaining substantial injuries of his own. I cannot tell you how grateful I was to have Eddie as my protector during that time of my life.
Right up until my first group shower in physical education class I was known as Bennie B. After that freshman shower I was known as BB. Not because of my initials, but because of my smallish male equipment. One classmate commented that my testacies were the size of BB’s.
I may be the lowest on the physical ladder of our hierarchy, but I was at the top from an intellectual stand point and as such I had an integral function that was valued among the six that made up for my lack of male prowess. Some of the six I assisted with homework, some I tutored, but for Eddie, I did his school work because he asked me to and I never felt inconvenienced or exploited by his or the others requests and I did not even resent the sexual demands that Eddie required of me. Indeed it was my contribution to our group that made me feel like an integral cog in the mechanism that held us together because we were all very different people. Differences that I will expound on later in my story, but for now let’s just say that we were a tight group until the September following graduating from high school when the six eventually went our separate ways.
Eddie stayed in Jasper Florida where we all grew up. Jasper is a small to medium sized city near the Georgia - Florida border of about 4500 people. Eddie worked for his father who owned a junk yard / auto repair shop. Clyde Wendell, Marcus Williams, and Bart Mason went to Jacksonville to trade schools located there. Chuck Sumar enrolled into the prestigious art collage in Sarasota Florida and I went to Florida State in Tallassee majoring in finance and minoring in business. From there I got my masters at Purdue University in Indiana.
It was at Purdue that I met my wife Lacy who, like me was a bit of a recluse. She more so than I. In fact she kept so much to herself it was hard to strike up a conversation with her. It wasn’t that she was stuck up or snobbish, no she was extremely shy and socially inept. She was from a small town in West Virginia that was no more than a stop light and a gas station. She was the first of her family to go to college. She completed her first year with a 3.5 GPA then had to drop out because of finances. She refused to go back to W. VA and got a job in West Lafayette hoping to earn enough to pay for another year.
I met her on the bus during first year because I didn’t need or even want a car. I was totally committed to getting my post graduate degree and wanted no distractions, But this waif of a girl huddled in the back of the bus peaked my curiosity and I promised myself the next time I saw her I would speak to her. A promise I broke four times before I got up the nerve to sit next to her. It would be an understatement to say I have never been comfortable with the ladies. At twenty three I was still a virgin.
So you may ask, how do you spend four years at a school like Florida State and not even accidently get laid. The answer would be simple I was too scared. Even when it was clear to me that the female pursuing me was not only willing, but eager to engage in sexual activity. The teasing I received in High School made me unwilling to expose myself to the potential ridicule and inevitable rejection that I knew I would receive if I exposed my perceived inadequacies. The reality was when erect I was just a quarter inch over the excepted male average of six inches and as smart as I am I could not allow the facts to interfere with myself delusion.
Too smart for my own good or not, even I could see this tiny person did not have the internal fortitude to attack another human being. She was even lower on the dominant hierarchy scale than I. She is mouse of a girl, a plain Jayne at best, with scraggily un-kept jet black hair that hid most of her unadorned and unpainted face. It was hard to tell what her body looked like because she seemed to prefer to wear oversized dark clothing that hung on her body like Spanish moss, hiding any figure that she might have. Even with the baggy clothing it was apparent that her breasts were small. What skin was exposed, which was very little, was milk white and when I got up the nerve to sit next to her she smelled fresh and clean with no perfumes or other odiferous compounds that we Americans use to enhance out scent.
It took me weeks to get around to asking her on a date, which she abruptly declined and it took two more weeks to get the courage to again sit next to her. I ask her to have a cup of coffee with me and when it looked as if she was going to reject me again I practically begged her to just to meet me somewhere other than the bus just to talk. She relented and that’s how our love affair began.
As it turns out she was not a virgin. A cousin had deflowered her at the age of fourteen and she had two other unsatisfactory sexual encounters before she withdrew her affections from the world.
I found that if I asked her to do things with me she was more reticent than if I told her what we were doing and not allow for a decision on her part.
The first time we made love was a disaster for me. My fear kept me from achieving an erection and after several tries we finally consummated our relationship. Since she had been raised in the backwoods environment of rural West Virginia there were several oddities that she didn’t share with the majority of the American female population. First and foremost was that she didn’t shave. She didn’t shave her legs, nor her underarms, nor her pubic region. She even had a cluster of fine dark hairs above her lip that looked more like a smudge than a colony if hairs.
Not that I cared about the pubic region, but the legs occasionally gave me concern when she would wear one of the few dresses she owned. Having black hair made it appeared from a distance that she had stockings on. From a distance was not a problem it was up close that gave me angsts when others, mostly women, would point and giggle.
Even though she was a twenty year old woman and except for the body hair, when naked she looked like a skinny twelve year old girl. Her breasts were “A” cup striving for “B”, her hips did flair at the waist and her behind was round and firm. From the waist down she was the perfect woman and since breasts were of no real concern to me I could search a long long time to find a woman better suited to me. Her skin was flawless and looked as though it had never seen the light of day. She never wore makeup and her eyebrows had almost grown together giving her that uni-brow look. Her nose was sharp and chiseled which enhanced the emaciated impression that I got when I first saw her.
I asked her once if she ever considered using makeup or shaving her legs. Her response was to ask if I wanted her too.
I told it was up to her and that I loved her the same either way. I guess she didn’t seem to see a need to make any changes in her make-up or shaving habits because none were forth coming.
After a while we grew closer and eventually she moved in with me, which helped her save more money and allowed our relationship to grow. The more comfortable we became with each other the more passionate and frequent our love making became. Soon it became clear to me that her libido was far more active than mine and I perceived that after each physical encounter, if I could have complied, she would have been anxious to continue. She rarely let these tiny disappointments show, but none the less I was aware that that she would like more from me but she would never push.
We talked about our childhood memories and the things we liked. She was a NASCAR fan. She had spent a lot of time in her uncle’s auto repair shop. She was much more proficient with tools than I was. She actually worked in her uncle’s garage as a paid mechanic to earn money for college. She liked old cars. She would often peruse auction sites on line checking out the classic cars.
Over time I realized what a wonderful, gentle, sensitive, caring woman that she was and fell deeper in love with her. So what if she wasn’t a beauty queen or even just kind of pretty. She would do anything for me and I for her.
As my graduation neared I asked her to marry me. She said yes immediately and her only concern was about completing school. I told her that when we got settled and put away a few bucks she could go back to school or we could start a family. The decision would be hers, which I later decided that was probably not the best way to phrase my answer. As I alluded to before, it was better to tell Lacy what you wanted from her than let her make the decision. When she did end up making a decision she rarely decided to do what I would have wanted and it took her forever to make the decision, where as if I told her what to do she did it quickly, efficiently, with no complaint.
We discussed where we would live after I graduated. I told her of Jasper and my friends who I grew up with. Of course I left out the levels of subjugation and duties that were required of me back then, but those days were over. The six had moved on and we were adults now.
Lacy told me of the poverty and hardships that she had to endure growing up in West Virginia. She made it clear that she had no desire to return to her roots. We considered moving to a larger city than Jasper like Atlanta or Jacksonville, but in the end we felt we were more suited to a less urban setting. Besides I had sent my resume to the only two CPA’s in Jasper and both expressed an interest regarding the possibility of my employment. What I didn’t know was when they received my resume they got together and conspired to offer to pay me next to nothing to work for them, thus keeping me under their thumb or driving me from Jasper so that I would not be their eventual competition.
No one in my family had ever met Lacy although I have been keeping them up to date so to speak with e-mails and photos. I had not told anyone back home of our marital plans leaving it as a surprise for when we arrived in Jasper.