Tuesday, February 23, 2010

BLOG - Aaaand.. They're gone...

Those amazing AFO braces I saw on eBay? SOLD! Someone must have done the 'Buy it Now' option - seemed like a good deal, coming with free crutches and all. Ah well - I couldn't have afforded them anyway. I guess I could hope and dream that Heather bought them for me in secret and will give them to me as a birthday present :)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Blog - I have never been so horny in my life...

I am so wet right now after seeing this Japanese video a friend sent me. A girl in a wheelchair, in public, and there's a dildo in the seat of the wheelchair that she's sitting on, as as she is wheeled around the dildo pumps up and down into her. I'm serious, I'm so hot right now I'm practically lightheaded.

Here's the Video

Sunday, February 21, 2010

I want braces!!!!

I found this pair of AFO braces on Ebay tonight - they are PERFECT! They're specifically for brace and bondage fetish, and they're very sexy! They've actually got d-rings on the back of the braces so you can use them for bondage - I just imagine Heather locking my legs to my wheelchair so I can't get out of it. That's so SEXY!! I really love them!

So, any devotee out there want to buy me a pair of braces? Pretty please :)

Sexy wonderful braces!!! (I think you have to log into Ebay to see them, they're under the 'adult' section...)

Friday, February 12, 2010

Blog - so I'm going to try it...

Thanks to the fairly overwhelming response to my 'would you buy my book' question, I'm going to do it. OK, I'm going to TRY to do it. I'm starting today on an anthology of short stories dealing with all aspectsof the devotee, wannabe, and pretender community. I'll probably throw some recreational casting in there as well. I'm excited to give this a shot - maybe all my work over the years has been moving towards this goal.

So my first story, which I'm about 3 pages into, is called 'Paradise Found' and it's a futuristic tale set in a world where society is rebuilding itself after a terrible tragedy, and women who volunteer to help 'repopulate' the planet are rendered quadriplegic and then impregnated and cared for by society. It's a cool conceptand I like the characters so far. I think I'm really going to outdo myself for this book! I hope people are as excited as I am for it!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Question - would you buy my book?

If I were to self publish a novel-sized work of fiction - either single long form story or book of short stories, how many people would buy it? What's best - one long narrative or a book of shorter stories?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

BLOG - New Story posted, but...

I published my newest story this morning, because I couldn't wait to share, but because I had actually written/finished it the other day and was just sitting on it, it's showing up earlier in the blog timeline, I'm not sure how to fix that. Anyway, my newest story, 'Close Encounters of the Devotee Kind' was just published, so I hope everyone likes it! It's a little different but I think it's fun.


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Blog - Another story ready to go

So I posted my newest story yesterday and then immediately started writing another crazy fun story which I just finished this morning. I think I'll wait a few days before posting it, though - don't want to flood the blog after the recent drought.

How do most people get my blog updates? How do you get other blog updates? Do you just check? Or maybe follow a twitter feed, or my yahoo profile? I'm just curious. Is there a way that would work better for people? Some kind of notification system? again, just curious.

I wanted to thank people for giving me ideas for stories - obviously it worked well :) Feel free to give me ideas any time, sometimes they really trigger my creative (and other ;) ) juices... so if you have ideas, if you have some fantasy or dream story, go ahead and drop me a line (Paracathy at hotmail) or comment here. Hope everyone enjoys what I've got coming up...

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Story - Close Encounters of the Devotee Kind

Close Encounters of the Devotee Kind

Sarah was having the most horrible dream, terrifying visions of leering, gray faces and violently spinning purple and orange lights. She felt pain, though she was pretty sure somewhere in the back of her mind that she shouldn't have been able to, then she felt a deep cold sensation down her right leg. The rest of her night was spent in restless, uncomfortable sleep, and when her alarm clock buzzed aggressively she felt like she hadn't slept at all. Then, as the turned off her alarm and pulled off the sheets, she screamed.

"Miss Jones, I'm afraid we simply don't have any explanation. It's... it's like nothing we've ever seen. Your right leg has been expertly amputated, as you can obviously see, and it's completely healed. By all accounts and by every means of examination we have, your leg was amputated mid thigh at least a decade ago." the doctor said, obviously deeply confused.

"But it was there YESTERDAY!" Sarah said exasperated, like someone who had been saying the same thing over and over all day. She was sitting on an exam table, her left leg dangling out of her hospital gown, her right leg - well, her right stump - pressing flat into the padded exam table top. "I had two legs went I went to bed, I've been over this a hundred times today!" she said, openly crying again. She had indeed woken to find her right leg completely gone, just a smooth, round stump in it's place. She could feel it, move it, it didn't hurt at all, but the fact remained that her leg was gone without a trace. She had vague recollections of bad dreams, but in all the panic of awaking as an amputee, she didn't put much thought into her nightmares.

"I understand your concern." said the new doctor unconvincingly. What was he, the eight? Ninth? She had lost count. Some time after lunch she realized they weren't diagnosing anything any more, they were just curious. Nothing like it had ever been seen, completely new phenomena, totally astonishing, blah blah blah - there was an air of sarcasm to all of it, though, an underlying incredulity that made Sarah uncomfortable. "But right now there is no indication that things will get worse. Other than the, um..., unusual situation, you are in perfect health, so..."

"So what? You're sending me home?" she said, looking defeated.

"There's nothing more we can do here, Sarah." the doctor said with a resigned sigh. "There is simply nothing medically wrong with you - at least nothing any part of medical science has ever encountered before. Go home, get some rest, and call this number in the morning - It's the number of a local rehab center with a good outpatient program to help you adjust."

"Adjust??" Sarah said, not fully understanding.

"Yes, adjust to your, um... situation." he said again, his bedside manner completely undone by the bizarre situation. "I believe you indicated earlier that you were familiar with the use of crutches?"

"So that's it? Give the one legged girl a pair of crutches and send her home?" Sarah was trying not to cry again, she was tired of it and didn't want to give this guy the satisfaction. The doctor handed her a pair of ordinary aluminum underarm crutches and she grabbed hold of them, angry and annoyed and a little afraid. With a little effort she stood on her one remaining leg and got her balance, taking a few tentative steps around the room. She was clumsy and the crutches hurt her shoulders, but at least she was walking and not being pushed in a wheelchair. She ushered the doctor out of the room and then slowly got dressed.

She crutched out of the room, the leg of her slacks folded crudely around her stump, and signed all the paperwork necessary for release, painfully aware of all the eyes tracking her every move. She was frightened and annoyed and tired and wanted nothing more than just getting back home. Thankfully the hospital provided a shuttle back to her condo and, after the most disturbing, frightening, and bizarre day of her whole life, she crutched into her living room and plopped heavily onto the couch, letting her crutches clatter to the floor. Her good leg ached, her shoulders ached, and she had no idea what she was going to do now that she was an amputee. She looked at the number to the outpatient rehab center and resolved to call it in the morning. She turned on the TV, watching something stupid that she couldn't pay attention to, and soon the stress of the day finally overcame her and she fell into a deep sleep.

The dreams again. The leering faces, the pain, the cool sensations, the flashing lights. She tossed and turned and finally cried out, waking herself and rolling off the couch, unbalanced because of her missing leg. She threw her hands out to catch herself and saw her right arm - or what remained of it, just another smooth, round stump that ended between her elbow and shoulder. She hit the floor with a thud and cried out, more from shock than actual pain.

"Sarah, we would like to formally apologize." said the very official looking man in the very expensive suit. Certainly not a doctor, possibly an administrator of some kind. Maybe a lawyer. "In short, we found your story yesterday so completely implausible that we honestly thought you were a psychiatric patient. The number you were given yesterday as you were discharged was to a psychiatric hotline, not a rehab center." the man looked very red, very nervous.

"So all that time yesterday, you never believed me? Not a single person?" she said angrily. She lay semi-reclined in bed, her arm stump waving animatedly as she shouted.

"Please, see it from our point of view, Sarah." the man said. "What has happened to you, well, it's simply not possible!"

"And yet here I am!" she said, staring at him and holding up her new stump.

"Please take my word, and the promise of the entire staff of this hospital, that we are doing everything we can to understand this situation and ensure that is doesn't happen again."

"Ha!" she shouted, her eyes puffy with tears. "You have no idea what's going on, how can you say you can stop it?"

"You will be staying here, in a private room in the hospital, and there are teams from the CDC and bio-toxins lab at your condo testing everything they can. We'll find the issue, and until you do, you should be safe here."

"I don't feel safe anywhere..." Sarah said, rubbing her arm stump with her slender left hand.

"Hi, I'm Olivia." said the young nurses' aid as she entered Sarah's room with a tray of food. Sarah had to admit it smelled great and she was starving after a day of the most extreme and intensive medical tests she had ever experienced.

"Hi Olivia." Sarah said quietly, trying to force a weak smile. "What's that?"

"Dinner - don't look at it that way, it's not hospital food. I went out and got a nice dinner from a place down the street - marinated grilled chicken, vegetables - it should be good." she smiled and set up Sarah's tray and raised her bed a little so Sarah was sitting up more.

"Thanks, Olivia." said Sarah and grabbed the fork from the tray. She looked down at the knife and the grilled chicken breasts and started to cry.

"It's OK Sarah, I can help." Olivia said, quickly grabbing the knife and fork and cutting Sarah's food into bite sized pieces. "Don't you worry about a thing, I can help you take care of whatever you need. You're my only patient tonight." she smiled warmly.

Sarah ate slowly, not really speaking. Halfway through dinner she looked up at Olivia. "I have to..." she said, a note of urgency in her voice.

"To what, Sarah?" Olivia asked, getting to her feet.

Sarah looked at her, a cross between panicked and embarrassed, and Olivia understood. "You want the bedpan or try for the toilet?" she asked.

"Toilet, I can make it." Sarah said, and Olivia helped her into a rolling attendant chair and pushed her into the bathroom, then helped her onto the toilet and looked away discretely as Sarah urinated, then helped her get cleaned up. to her credit, Sarah didn't cry when Olivia had to help her wipe.

Once Sarah was back in bed and had finished dinner, Olivia turned on the TV.

"Stay and watch with me?" Sarah asked, more fear and desperation in her voice than she expected.

"Sure." Olivia said cheerfully. "Like I said - you're my only patient tonight."

The two watched TV until close to midnight and Olivia finally fell asleep in the reclining chair by Sarah's bed. Sarah, too, finally succumbed to sleep, though she continued to fight it until after 1am according to the big round clock on the wall. She fell asleep, her left hand holding the stump of her right arm, and hoped that she wouldn't have those terrible bad dreams again.

The dreams came, though, and Sarah was terrified, she was confused. The same dreams, the insane leering faces, the bizarre sensations, the lights. There were voices in this one, too, something Sarah could barely make out. The sensations and sounds and fears all rolled and swirled together until Sarah finally awoke, gasping. In the half light of the private room she could see that Olivia was still sitting near the bed, tossing and thrashing and moaning in her sleep.

"Olivia!" she called out in little more than a whisper. She swallowed, then took a deep breath and called out more loudly. "Olivia! Wake up!" she said.

Olivia's eyes popped open with a start and she looked around the room as if she had momentarily forgotten where she was. "Oh, Sarah, I'm sorry, I must have dozed off. I had the most bizarre dream..." she said, still groggy and wiping sleep from her eyes.

"Olivia, look at me." Sarah said in the most calm voice she could manage. "I want you to stay calm, OK?"

Olivia looked at Sarah curiously, then froze, as if something was suddenly dawning on her. She looked down, following Sarah's gaze to her legs - or what had been her legs, anyway. Her long, athletic legs were now short, underdeveloped, lifeless, and totally numb.

"Sarah..." she said, her breath coming quickly, panic starting to set in. "Sarah, I can't feel my legs!" Olivia cried, staring down at her now crippled, paralyzed legs.

"Me either Olivia." Sarah said, pulling off her sheets. Both legs ended in round stumps between knee and hip, her left arm now her only remaining limb. "Maybe we can get matching wheelchairs...."

There was an insane rush around the hospital as soon as Sarah and Olivia's conditions were discovered. According to hallway surveillance both women had never left the room and nobody had gotten in, the door remained shut the whole time. There was no explanation for the situation and everyone in the hospital was completely baffled.

"How are you feeling?" Sarah asked Olivia as they wheeled her back into the room they now shared. Olivia's eyes were red from recent crying.

"I'm paralyzed completely from T2 down. And it looks as if..."

"As if you've been paralyzed for years." Sarah said, completely understanding.

"As if I've been paralyzed since birth..." Olivia corrected bitterly.

Sarah watched as Olivia struggled to transfer out of her hospital wheelchair onto the bed beside her, dragging her small, crippled legs with her. Her feet were curled and ankles turned in and her legs lacked all muscle tone. It really looked like she had been in a wheelchair all her life. Sarah could see the bulky hospital diaper under her hospital gown and her cheeks went pink, embarrassed.

"Don't be embarrassed." Olivia said with a sigh, seeing her reaction. "Last night I helped you use the toilet. Ironically, tonight I can't use it any more..." she said, patting the diaper. "But this isn't our fault, it's just something crazy, insane that happened..."

"That is happening." Sarah corrected.

"You think?" Olivia asked, looking at her wide-eyed.

"It's been three nights in a row for me, why wouldn't I?" she said. "Maybe you should sleep in a different room Olivia." Olivia shook her head.

"No, I figure we're in this together now. If they're coming back for you, chances are they'll want me too."

Sarah reached out her one remaining hand and Olivia took hold of it, grasping it firmly.

"Besides." Olivia continued, lifting one of her limp legs and shifting it on the bed. "We've got to try and stay awake all night and see what happens."

The two women sat in the hospital bed together, eating and watching TV and chatting as if they had known each other forever. They were both being monitored via a tangle of wires, and there was a closed circuit TV camera watching them both. Sarah needed a lot of help to get simple things done with only one arm and no legs, but even paralyzed Olivia was a big help. Sarah helped Olivia with a couple diaper changes as well, not feeling at all embarrassed by it any more. It was surprising and bizarre how quickly they both seemed to be adjusting to disabled life - though in the confines of a fully staffed hospital Sarah was certain things were not nearly as complicated as they would be back home.

One AM rolled around with the women still awake and chatting. Then 1:30, 1:45, 1:55 and both women were wide awake, watching television and talking animatedly. Olivia was giving Sara a stump massage that felt really wonderful, and both women were giggling about calling it a 'foot massage'. At 1:58am exactly, however, both women dropped to the bed and fell into a deep and immediate sleep.

The dreams were more terrifying than ever, and Sarah realized that in some way, she was actually awake and experiencing everything for real, not in a typical dream state. She felt the cold gripping sensation on her left arm and then knew immediately that her last remaining limb was gone. She looked around frantically and saw more swirling colors, bizarre otherworldly faces, but she couldn't make anything out clearly, it was like she was on some very strong hallucinogenic drug trip.

Sarah woke with a gasp and the lights were already coming on. It was still 1:58am according to the hospital clock, but it seemed like the dream 'attack' had taken hours. A doctor and two nurses rushed into the room and started checking things - a cold stethoscope was pressed to Sarah's breast. Olivia was still thrashing a bit and Sarah reached for her, but realized immediately that her left arm was, as she had experienced in the dream, amputated at the same level as her right arm. She was a quadruple amputee, helpless.

One of the nurses shook Olivia awake and she cried out. "Sarah!" she said, arms groping around. "Sarah, I can't see!" she said, panicked. "Where are you??"

"I'm here Olivia." Sarah said. "I'm right here, the doctor is here too."

"I can't find you Sarah, take my hand." she said, her voice still panicky.

"I can't Olivia, I don't have any arms now." Sarah said. "And it looks like your eyes are gone, sweety." she said, not wishing to belabor the point. Olivia's hands went to her eyes, then pulled away when they felt the hollow, empty eyelids.

The cameras caught nothing but three and a half seconds of static. The multiple vital signs monitors were level and flat until that static hit, then both women's vital signs jumped up as if they were terrified. That was all the evidence that was collected, aside from the fact that Sarah's left arm was amputated and Olivia's eyes were both surgically removed.

In their hospital room, they sat in wheelchairs, across from each other at a square table their breakfast was spread out on. Eggs, bacon, coffee, waffles. It all smelled great, but neither woman had much appetite. Sarah was dressed in a t-shirt and shorts someone had found for her, her stumps exposed. Olivia was in small sweatpants and fuzzy socks covering her crippled legs and feet, though her bulky diaper was obvious under it. she wore sunglasses, too - at her own insistence. Both women were being fed by orderlies who seemed more than a little uncomfortable being there - it was obvious everyone in the hospital knew what had happened, or had at least heard something bizarre. Olivia turned her head to where she imagined Sarah was sitting.

"So, what's next?" She said.

Sarah stared at her and started to reply...

STORY - Blind Girl's Bluff...

blind Girls' Bluff - By Paracathy

Lisa took a deep breath, sat on the edge of the bed, and blinked twice. Her hands were shaking. She stared at the unlabeled bottle of clear fluid that sat on her bedside table and reached out her hand to take it, then retracted it. She breathed in again and grabbed the bottle, squirting the clear fluid into both eyes, flooding them completely before she could rethink her decision. She dropped the bottle as the cool, stinging sensation hit both her eyes simultaneously, working from the front to the back, until it felt like the coolness was behind her eyes, just above her cheekbones and sinuses.
Lisa closed her eyes, lay down on the bed, and cried until she fell asleep.

Morning came via a chiming alarm clock as Lisa immediately realized the bright morning sun streaming through her bedroom window was a thing of the past. Her world was totally, utterly black. Beyond black, really, something impossible for Lisa to describe, even to herself. She had a dull, throbbing headache at her temples and felt dizzy, unsteady as she lay in her soft bed. She knew the headache was a side effect of the drugs, but the dizziness she wasn't sure about. She sat up carefully and was immediately disoriented, feeling almost nauseous as she sat upright. She lay back down, her breathing shallow, almost panicked. She thought she knew what to expect, thought she understood what being blind would be like, but this was very different from walking around the house with a blindfold on, very different from tapping around the living room wearing dark sunglasses and a broomstick handle cane.

It was the only way, it was all going to be worth it. That was Lisa's mantra, and she repeated it over and over again as she lay in bed and tried to become accustomed to the situation, tried to calm her mind and come to terms with...

Blindness. Not 'her situation' she told herself. Blindness. Complete, irreversible blindness, incurable after one hour of contact with the drugs. The alarm went off after seven hours, give or take. That meant that not only was she completely blind, but all traces of the drug would also be flushed from her system.

That thought led to another - Lisa had to pee, and she needed to do it soon. In her blind state, the other messages sent by her body were coming through loud and clear now. She felt her way to the edge of the bed and swung her feet off, slipping to the floor to stand. It felt for an instant like she was free-falling from some great height and she gasped, then her feet touched the floor and she steadied herself. How far to the bathroom? She stood, still feeling slightly dizzy, and held her hands out in front of her, waving them as if she were feeling her way across the room. After three steps she stubbed her toe hard against something and found herself disoriented, her big toe throbbing.

Her need to pee was becoming urgent and she realized that finding her way to her bathroom was going to be more difficult than she had imagined. Deciding that pride was the least of her needs now, Lisa crouched slowly, carefully to the ground and then began to feel her way across the floor of her room, finding the wall, then slowly making it to the door, then the hallway.

It took her ten minutes, but she made her way to the toilet and sat, feeling amazing relief as she urinated. She cleaned herself, groped blindly for the flush handle, then felt her way to the sink. She washed her hands and splashed water on her face - it felt amazing and incredibly refreshing, she noted - and then felt her way slowly, deliberately to the living room. She felt her way to the door, found the deadbolt, and un-locked it. She then crawled to the couch, sat, and picked up the phone.

"This is 911 what is the nature of your emergency?" the cool woman's voice said over the phone. Lisa tried to build up as much fear and panic as she could before she replied - she found it wasn't nearly as difficult as she had thought.

"I just woke up and, I'm not sure what's going on, but I can't see. I think I'm blind..." she said with a panting edge of terror.

"OK ma'am, try to stay calm. How old are you?" the voice asked, all business as she immediately understood the seriousness of the call.

"I'm 22." Lisa said. "Born August 11th."

"And what is your address, ma'am?" the 911 operator asked,

Lisa gave her address and stayed on the phone, switching between nervous chatter and quiet sobbing, until she heard a knock on the door.

"Paramedics, did someone call 911?" asked the deep bass voice from outside the apartment.

"In here." Lisa called and she heard the door open, heard heavy footsteps on the hardwood floors.

"Can you tell me what happened, Miss?" the deep bass voice said from somewhere very close. She had rehearsed this part very thoroughly, over and over again.

"I'm not sure." she said, unevenly. "I went to bed early last night with a headache, it was throbbing, but I figured it was just stress. I took a couple Tylenol and went to bed. I woke up to my alarm this morning and..." at this, she started to cry and started feeling around in front of her, slightly panicky. she felt a strong, warm hand take her.

"It's OK, let's just check a few things." the deep voice said. "I'm going to be touching you - it may feel disorienting, but I need to examine you. Please don't be afraid, OK?"

Lisa nodded, then felt the warm hands on her face, felt them open her right eye wide, then her left. Heard clicking and scratching noises she couldn't place. All the while, she heard and felt so much, but saw nothing. Not a flicker, not a shadow - the blindness was complete and total.

"Miss, to your knowledge have you been exposed to any type of cemical or gas?" he asked.

"I'm not sure what you mean?" Lisa said, trying to sound convincing. This was the key, if she got this right, it would all be worthwhile.

"Have you been exposed to anything unusual in the last seven days, like a cleaner or air freshener or other chemical?"

"Well, there was plan spraying at my office on Thursday, I think - yes, Thursday."

"Not just someone watering the plants?" the deep voice asked.

"No." Lisa shook her head. It made her feel dizzy. "We do all the watering ourselves. This was fertilizer or something. The guy had a green and yellow uniform, I remember that." she said, then suddenly started crying and sobbing loudly. "Oh god, I can barely remember what yellow and green look like... oh god what's happening to me?" she asked. She felt a comforting hand holding hers.

"Calm down miss, try to calm down. There's no indication this is permanent, it could be a simple allergic reaction."

Lisa knew he was lying - by this time her eyes had turned a milky white and it would have been obvious to anyone that the damage was irreversible, but Lisa played along.

"Really? It might... might not be permanent?" she asked, still sobbing quietly.

"We wont' know until we get you to the hospital, miss. We're going to help you onto a stretcher - it's just a precaution, OK?"

Lisa nodded and let two sets of strong, confident hands move her onto the stretcher and strap her down across her legs and chest, as an added precaution.

The ride to the hospital was a world of new sensations, from the feeling of the bumps in the road to the sounds of the radio chatter. the deep voiced paramedic, whose name was Rob, kept talking to her, trying to keep her calm, telling her not to think the worst. Lisa noticed that nobody else was talking, though.

Lisa had been in the emergency room, listening to a cacophony of sounds - beeping monitors, crying children, moaning patients, chattering nurses and doctors, but she was quickly moved to a private room. Nurses drew blood carefully, talking to Lisa all the time, making sure she knew what was happening the whole time, explaining each step they were taking. Lisa noted that they seemed almost rehearsed at the situation, as if people suddenly stricken blind happened often. That was good, that was very good.

"I'm Dr. Stafford." came a light, feminine voice. "I'm going to be examining you, OK?"

"Yes, I understand." Lisa said, turning her head in the direction of the voice. "Can you tell me what's happened? Why can't I see?" she said nervously, like someone who didn't want to hear the answer.

Lisa heard the woman's shoes squeak subtly across the floor and hear the distinct moan of a desk chair being sat in beside her.

"Lisa, I have to be honest with you. It looks like you have been exposed to a chemical agent that, in a small percentage of people, has been shown to cause blindness."

Lisa gasped as the doctor continued.

"The chemical is found in a brand of spray-able plant fertilizer. We have confirmed that it was the fertilizer that was being used in your office building up until Friday."

"Well..." Lisa stammered a bit. "What do we do now? Is there a pill or something?"

"Lisa." the doctor was very serious and clinical, yet Lisa could hear the compassion in her voice clearly. Lisa felt the woman take her hand and hold it between hers. "Lisa, I'm afraid that the damage is permanent. Irreversible."

Lisa was silent, her heart thumping fast - she hoped it came across as panic, not excitement. When she didn't say anything, the doctor continued.

"We will enroll you in an occupational rehab center tonight. IT's a very good program, and in a few months -"

"A few months?" Lisa said with genuine surprise. She hadn't counted on months of rehab.

"Yes Lisa, after a few months you'll be able to live on your own, get back to your life, things will get mostly back to normal."

"Mostly?" Lisa asked.

"Well, I won't lie to you Lisa - being blind is not something you're likely to just 'get used to'. Living with a disability can be a daily challenge, but you can still live a healthy and fulfilling life."

Lisa just sat, she could feel tears streaming down her face as she contemplated the rest of her life, blind, feeling her way around, fumbling and tripping over herself. Was it really worth it? It had to be, she told herself. It just had to be.

The rehab center was nice- well, it sounded nice, anyway, and it was warm. Lisa was led to an office where she recited a lot of her general information - allergies, next of kin, occupation. Lisa noticed with interest, however, that they never asked her about her insurance. Again, she thought to herself, this was a very good thing.

Next a nurse led her to a room, Lisa holding onto the woman's elbow and slowly putting one foot in front of the other, always feeling disoriented, like she was going to fall with each progressive step.

"I won't let you fall, honey." the nurse said warmly.

"Shouldn't I have a cane or something?" Lisa asked. She didn't know if it was rude or stupid, but it was the first thing that came to her mind.

"Maybe tomorrow or the next day - that will be your first lesson. Until you understand how to use it, though, you'd likely just hurt yourself or someone else, waving it around like you're looking for a pinata. Trust me - this is a good program. You'll be out on your own in no time."

"If you say so." Lisa said, following the woman's confident lead.

"so what are you in for?" Came a loud, high-pitched, feminine voice as they entered Lisa's new room. Lisa jumped.

"Rebecca, you know you have to keep your voice down." the nurse said. "Sorry Lisa, I didn't realize Becky would be home."

"Hi." Lisa said to nobody in particular. "I'm Lisa. And, as you can probably tell, I'm blind.."

"No way I could really know that, Lisa." Came Rebecca's voice, the volume greatly diminished. "As I think we're in the same club here. Woke up Friday completely blind. Plant spray, or so they tell me."

"Same here." said Lisa, allowing herself to be seated on a plush bed. "Got hit Thursday at work, apparently."

"Hey, Nurse Donna, how about you sit her over here so we're not yelling across the room at each other?"

"Would that be OK, Lisa?" the nurse asked.

"Sure, I think I'd appreciate the company." Lisa said truthfully. This was fast becoming overwhelming and Lisa needed whatever kind of connections she could make before she broke down again. The nurse helped her over to what felt like a sofa or loveseat and sat her next to Becky.

"Scary, huh?" Becky said as they both heard the nurse leave the room, her crepe soles making smaller and smaller squeaking noises as she walked down the hallway.

"Yeah." Lisa said truthfully. "You go to bed able to see and..."

"In your sleep, wow. That's got to be rough. Still - it happened to me at work, middle of the afternoon. Started with a bad headache, splashed some water on my face. Eyes were all red. That's the last thing I remember seeing - my red, bloodshot eyes. Twenty minutes later I was in an ambulance, screaming in panic I'm ashamed to say. Now, my eyes are milky white - or so they tell me. Yours too, I'd bet."

"I... I didn't..." Lisa said. She hadn't really thought about what had happened to her eyes. It didn't really matter, of course - but in a way it did.

"It's OK Lisa." said Becky, and Lisa felt Becky's warm hand rest on her thigh. It pulled back quickly. "Sorry." Becky said, a note of embarrassment in her voice.

"Don't be." said Lisa. "Seems touch is one of the few things we've got left."

"Yeah, I guess so." said Becky. "Hey, do you mind if..."

"What?" Lisa asked.

"If I looked at your face. I mean, with my hands..."

"Sure, I guess so." Lisa said, turning towards Becky's voice. She fely Becky's hands begin to touch her, feeling her arm, then her stomach, then up to her breasts, neck, until they found her face. She found the sensation oddly comforting, even exciting. Becky's hands touched her face gently, tracing the curve of her cheeks, the smooth line of her chin, her soft eyebrows, her closed eyelids, the gentle slope of her nose, her soft, moist lips.

"You're very pretty." Becky said. Her voice was closer than Lisa expected. Becky's hands were caressing, comforting... sensual....

Lisa felt her way up Becky's thigh, to her stomach, over the swell of her breasts. She felt Becky's erect nipple through her thin shirt. Felt her smooth neck, felt the muscles contract in a nervous swallow, then moved up to her face.

It felt narrow, slightly angular, with high, soft cheeks and wide eyes. Her lips seemed thin, soft, and Lisa could feel her cheeks contract upwards in a smile.

"Like what you see?" Becky said softly, and then without warning they were kissing, touching each others' faces, then lower, with growing urgency. Lisa felt Becky's warm tongue probing her mouth and she did the same, tasting this stranger that she would never actually see...

Becky pulled away suddenly, startling Lisa. "I'm sorry, I was..." Lisa started to stammer as she felt Becky get off the couch, heard soft footfalls across the room, heard the door squeak slowly shut, heard the click of the lock on the door. She felt Becky take her hand and she stood there, letting Becky's hands trace the lines of her body until, before long, her clothes had dropped to the floor. She felt Becky and willed her shaking hands to do the same, finding every clasp, button and buckle and undoing it until all she could feel of her roommate was warm, soft, bare skin. They felt there way to the plush bed and, without speaking, explored every inch of each others' naked bodies, taking in every sensation, 'seeing' with their fingertips, gasping, kissing, licking....

The nurses said nothing when they came in the next morning and found Becky and Lisa in the same bed, naked and covered with disheveled blankets. They helped the two women get dressed and led them to their rehab classes. The first half of the day was just listening to long, tedious discussions about what 'being blind' meant. Even though she obviously couldn't see her, Lisa knew Becky was there, sitting near her. There were others in the room too - three others. An older woman, a younger girl, high school student, and a man who had worked for a greenhouse - all had been exposed to the same chemical. Ironically, Lisa thought to herself, she was the only person in the room whose blindness wasn't caused by the plant food. Of course nobody could ever know that....

They began to relearn basic, simple tasks in the afternoon - identifying household objects, eating and drinking (much more difficult than Lisa ever imagined) and, finally, cane work. Lisa had imagined that once she held her white cane in her hands and began tapping around, it would magically make her condition more manageable. In reality, it just gave her one more thing to try and think about as she blindly walked around an unfamiliar space. She got constant encouragement from her coaches, and she heard Becky getting the same from a short distance away. Finally, after what seemed like a number of hours, they broke for dinner.

"OK gang, let's use what we learned at dinner. Everyone's place settings will be set up the same way we practiced, and the coaches will be around to help if needed, but you're encouraged to try it on your own." said one of the coaches - or possibly a nurse, Lisa wasn't sure. She followed the voices guiding the class out of the room and into the hallway, gently yet deliberately tapping her cane side to side until she found the edge where the wall met the floor. The tapping sounds in the hallway slowly became a gentle, sliding noise as all five blind students started following the wall as instructed.

"Becky?" Lisa said quietly, and Becky's reply came from just behind her.

"Right here Lisa." she said.

"Dinner?" Lisa asked, and she could almost hear the smile that came with her positive response.

"I'd love to." she said, and both women made their way to the caffeteria and sat at the same table. They ate in relative silence - focusing on where their food was and how to get it into their mouths took more concentration than Lisa had every expected, but they both wound up finishing their meals without needing help from the aides. Not everyone was so lucky, from the sound of it - in the middle of dinner someone, Lisa thought likely the high school girl - dropped something and then broke down, crying and sobbing. She was helped out of the room and dinner continued even more silently, if that was possible.

Half way back to their room, Lisa following Becky and looking forward to more 'training' once they were alone, Lisa heard her name being called.

"Lisa, you have a phone call dear." said one of the front desk women. Lisa followed her, allowing herself to be led by the arm more than using her cane, and took the phone as it was placed in her hand.

"Lisa? Lisa is that you?" came the panicked voice.

"Samantha, hi cousin, how's it going?" Lisa said, trying to sound nonchalant. She had expected this, of course, but it didn't make it any easier.

"That big case my boss is working on, that one I told you about on Thursday? Your name just popped up on it, along with a few others. What's going on??"

"Well, yeah, I guess... I guess that the company doing our plant spraying was using the same chemical. I guess they hadn't gotten the memo that it was dangerous." Lisa said, her voice cracking a little. "And you know all the plants in the lobby where I work... "

"So you're...." came Samantha's reply.

"As a bat." replied Lisa. She realized she was crying again. "So, how's that case going? got a court date yet?"

"No need." Samantha said quietly, realization dawning on her.

"How much?" Lisa asked, dropping all pretense.

"At least ten million." Samantha said.

"Each?" Lisa said. Her heart leapt.

"Each. At least." Samantha said.

"I'll buy you something nice." Lisa said. Samantha said something unintelligible and hung up.

Lisa tapped her way back to her room, asking one of the nurses' aides for help, and as soon as she got in she closed the door and locked it behind her.

"What's up babe? Everything OK?" Becky said. Lisa slipped off her shirt and bra and felt her way over to Becky.

"Yeah babe, everything is just fine." she said into Becky's ear. "We've got some celebrating to do tonight."

"What are we celebrating, the invention of braille?" Becky asked sarcastically, her hands caressing Lisa's breasts.

"No. We're celebrating my flunking out of law school two months ago..." Lisa said, smiling wide and running her sensitive fingers through Becky's hair.