"He's an absolute asshole Aunt Bridget," were the first words I heard when I barged into the kitchen after I'd got home from football practice.
"Hi mom," I said with a big smile as I reached to grab a couple of cookies from the pan that had just been pulled from the oven. It was their aroma that had drawn me unerringly to the room. After giving mom a quick kiss on the cheek I turned to Rosie and asked with a twinkle in my voice, "Got a kiss for your favorite cousin beautiful?"
"No!" Rosie said emphatically.
"Charlie!" mom wailed, "Not before dinner."
"I'm starving... and you're such a good mom... and beautiful too," I answered as I popped one of the still warm chocolate chip cookies into my mouth and then took mom in my arms and danced her around the kitchen table.
"Your crazy," my smiling mom said happily.
"They think they're so smart," Rose complained, then added, "and I mean you and your kind Charles Andrew Lyte."
"My kind?" I asked.
"All of us?" I asked laughing as I moved from mom and grabbed Rosie's hands.
"Yes, and don't do that," she ordered as she struggled to escape me.
"Bad day?" I asked as I spun her around. "Nice hair by the way," I added as I looked admiringly at the thick bright red strands of hair that had somehow appeared among her long, almost waist length mane of dark, thick lustrous black hair since I'd last seen her at breakfast.
"You like it?" she couldn't help asking.
"Gorgeous cuz, simply gorgeous," I enthused as I gently touched one of the red strands that were bouncing down and over her breasts. "Hot Chicago artist babe, sooooo sexy," I said then gave her a wolf whistle.
"Well, most men are assholes," Rosie amended.
"Honey, language," mom chided.
"So what happened today to put you in such a wonderful mood Miss Rosie?" I asked with a pronounced southern drawl.
"My art apparently isn't 'representational' enough for our brilliant instructor Mr. Crandall," Rose said in her most sarcastic tone.
"But I thought that was the point," I interjected bravely, knowing one wrong word might bring down her wrath on my head. Rose saw Mom and I as 'artistic philistines' who couldn't possibly appreciate the subtlety of modern art. Having spent the last twelve years in the foothills of Tennessee it was inconceivable that we could be anything but ignorant of 'abstract or other non-representational' art. Even though mom had spent most of her youth in Chicago and had studied art history at college!
"He's incompetent... a second rate has been who's never had a show outside of redneck country," she raged, totally ignoring my words.
"Maybe they feel you need to master the human form dear," mom offered, "before you..."
"Naked tits," she interrupted, but then quickly amended it to "naked breasts" when she saw mom's frown. "Men Aunt Bridget, they just want everyone to draw naked women."
We heard a non stop lecture on art for an hour as we ate dinner but we made no complaint. Rosie Williams, the daughter of moms elder sister, who'd come to live with us in September, simply by her presence among us had made our lives more fun. I really didn't give two hoots about conceptual or abstract art, but I could listen to her talk about it for hours. Quite simply she was interesting. Her energy, her passion simply forced you to be more interesting, more involved.
And after knowing her all my life, of having spent at least a couple of weeks every summer at the family cottage with her, it was just since she'd come to live with us that I'd belatedly discovered just how hot she was. Like as in sexy hot. At a horny eighteen years of age I'd suddenly found myself living in the next room to a twenty-one year old, free wheeling artsy type who all my friends found exotic and alluring.
She stormed off to her 'studio' after dinner, the loft in the old barn she'd converted into a working space, her 'atelier' as she called it.
"Go and talk to her Charlie," mom instructed as we washed and dried the dishes side by side.
"Maybe you better go mom," I said, not sure if I wanted an evening of my tempestuous cousin.
"I've got the quarterly Library Board meeting tonight sweetie," she answered as she draped the drying cloth over my shoulder.
Thirty minutes later, after mom had left for her meeting and I'd showered, I wandered out to Rosie's hay loft 'atelier' where, after climbing the ladder, I found her standing hunched over her easel, a frown on her normally smiling face. She also seemed to be mumbling under her breath.
This could be a mistake I thought to myself as I watched her hands fly angrily across the sheet of drawing paper that seemed ready to take flight from its precarious position on her stand.
"That doesn't look very representational cuz," I ventured carefully.
"Who asked you?" she snapped angrily back without raising her eyes from her drawing.
"It's very good though," I added, this time with a cheeky teasing tone in my voice, as I moved to stand at her shoulder where I stood pensively looking at the black blob she had created.
"Shut up you," she ordered as she grabbed the drawing and threw it to the floor where it joined five or six previous efforts.
"Is this one a man or a woman," I teased again as I picked one of her rejected efforts from the floor and peered at it dubiously.
"Ha, ha Charlie. Backwoods, redneck boy all of a sudden becomes the fucking New York Times art critic," she complained but we both were smiling now. "It's male," she finally added after she'd given me a few seconds to study her drawing. "And it's upside down Mr. Expert," she said as she turned it in my hand.
"Of what species?"
"Oh that's a good one Charlie," she answered, her voice dripping with sarcasm.
"Maybe you need a model to inspire you... you could try to capture my magnificent physique," I offered as I gave her my best Charles Atlas pose.
"Sure Arnold," she scoffed.
I quickly peeled off my t-shirt and comically went into a weightlifters posing routine. "God Rosie, what artist wouldn't want to paint this body? C'mon, try to get your hand around these biceps," I challenged as I flexed.
Laughing and shaking her head she poked me in the chest with her paint brush, splattering my left nipple with black paint.
"Hey!" I protested as I jumped back out of her reach.
"So you think you could be a model do you?" she asked and then after seeing my nod added, "Well, take of your pants then and stand over there." Then she turned and headed back to her easel.
"Nooooo way," I said to my cousins back. And yet, the truth was, the second she'd said the words I'd wanted to. I'd wanted my older cousin to see me naked... to see IT.
"Mr. Shy," she said derisively as she set a new piece of paper on her stand and then turned and faced me.
"It has nothing to do with shyness dear cousin," I answered as I hopped from foot to foot in front of her, my excitement obvious.
"If you're worried about... you know... size..." she started slowly, a new raw huskiness in her voice, drawing out the words provocatively. "I can always make it biggggger," she finally added with a sexy laugh, the challenge clear.
"It's big enough," I shot back as I felt the red blush spread across my cheeks.
"Is that what sweet Ellie May, your pretty little southern belle says," Rosie asked in a syrupy southern accent.
"What?" I stammered, knowing my face was as red as a beet.
"You know, that pretty cheerleader that follows you around everywhere. The one with the bouncy blond hair and the large, bouncy..." Rosie stopped in mid sentence as she cupped her own breasts to demonstrate her meaning. "I mean she has seen it, hasn't she?" she asked, still using the Southern drawl.
Finally regaining a little of my composure I answered, "Southern men don't talk about things like that... we're gentlemen. I know that someone from Chicago may not have encountered one before..."
"Yeah right Charlie... like all those gentlemen we saw in the infield at Talladega," Rose countered in a tough Chicago accent, evoking the memory of the weekend just a month ago when she, mom and I had spent an afternoon watching a car race among a couple of hundred thousand drunken race car fans. It had been Rosie's suggestion to go of course, her desire to imbue herself in 'Southern Culture' as she mockingly described it so that her paintings would reflect the 'redneck milieu' she now found herself in.
"They were drunk... NASCAR fans... that's different," I protested.
"Remember those six gentlemen who unzipped themselves in front of your mom and poor innocent cousin and fifty other women and started peeing..."
"OK. OK... I'll do it," I capitulated, knowing there was no point in trying to win any argument with my crazy cousin. I knew we'd still probably be arguing at midnight if I didn't take off my pants. Besides I wanted to see her reaction. My cock was filling!
"Besides Charlie, you're not a Southerner," Rose added, wanting to get the last word in.
"I've lived here most of my life," I answered as I turned away from my cousins prying eyes as I unzipped and then pushed down my jeans.
"Yeah but you were born in Chicago," she said, but then quickly asked as my pants pooled around my ankles, "Why aren't you wearing any underwear?"
"What?" I asked as I turned and faced her.
"Ohhhhhh!" escaped from her lips as her eyes opened wide in surprise.
.... There is more of this story ...