Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Chapter 12: Sexist

The Leader knocks on the door to Titanium and Camo's room.

"Hello boys. Your teacher has brought it to my attention that you, Camo in particular, have requested some more forms of entertainment for the house. Is this true?"

"Well, yes, sir. I just thought there should be more things to do here if you really want us to stay away from the clubs and casinos."

"Camo, you should not be tempted by the clubs and casinos anyway. Your pure soul shouldn't even desire those things."

"Ok, fine, but I just want something else to do besides read."

"I have purchased a pool table for the house. It is in the indoor courtyard by the fountain. I hope you boys enjoy it."

"Wow, really?"

"Yes, go check it out now."

This was The Leader suppressing dissent again by giving you a little treat, wasn't it?

Yes. Camo and I had often discussed wanting something else to do for fun other than read, but he was the one brave enough to rock the boat. I was so numbed by everything in my life at that point, that any little spark of change was welcomed. No matter how minuscule the change was, it was always enough of a change to make me forget about the big picture.

The Leader smiles to himself after Titanium and Camo leave the room to go play pool. He goes into his room and starts getting ready for bed, but before he can sleep, he has a second thing to deal with, which is the situation between Barry and Zinfandel.


"Yes, Mr. Leader, sir?"

"Barry says he did nothing wrong. He said he did what he had to do to keep the intimacy session going because Zinfandel was the one who refused to cooperate."

"Zinfandel says that she asked politely for Barry to change positions, but he refused."

"Barry says he did as Zinfandel asked, but Zinfandel didn't respond. Has she been to the clinic?"

"Yes, she has and they gave her some pain relief."

"She will be fine, Petunia. That will be all."

The Leader puts his walkie talkie back in his pocket. Some of the first time girls could be so silly because they worried about things as trivial as sexual positions. The only thing that mattered to The Leader was that the act was successfully performed.

Do you think The Leader looked down upon women?

He definitely put everyone in a box by gender. If he did look down upon women, he hid it quite well in his daily mannerisms. Any time I saw him interacting with a woman, he was always kind and civil.

Titanium and Camo walk into a classroom, but their usual teacher isn't there, and neither is Zinfandel. Instead, there is an unfamiliar man standing by the marker board. Titanium turns to Camo and expresses his confusion, loud enough for the man to hear.

"Uh, is this the right class? Our clock beeped, so it's class time."

"Welcome, Titanium and Camo. I am your teacher. The Leader wanted to divide the boys and girls today for a special lesson."

Titanium and Camo take their seats and the teacher starts talking.

"As grown men in this house, you are strong. You should be protective of women, who are the weaker sex. Now, women are wonderful and make great friends, but it is no secret that they are weaker than men. Physically, women are smaller and proportionally carry less muscle mass in their bodies. If you see one of the female residents getting hurt by a Stranger, it is your duty to protect them. This can be scary at times, but you are a man, so you have the ability to use your strength to get the woman out of the bad situation. However, as you know, The Strangers are dangerous, so if you see a weapon, it would be wise for you to walk away."

Titanium thinks that he wouldn't know how to fight someone because he doesn't really like confrontation, so he raises his hand.

"What if I'm too weak to get the woman away?"

"You must never think that. You are strong, not only physically, but emotionally as well. Men don't cry as often as women do because women have a harder time managing their emotions. Another thing to remember as a man is that babies are a woman's responsibility. Some residents choose to work here in this house as volunteers when they grow up and that is fine, but it would be wise for a man to choose to work some place other than the nursery. Is that understood?"

Both Titanium and Camo nod in unison. Camo raises his hand for the first time in class. Usually he just blurts something out, but this teacher isn't getting under his skin like the other one does.

"Do we have a duty to help only the female residents in this house, or can we help female Strangers we see who are getting hurt?"

Camo is thinking about Verona, and imagining himself saving her from distress, after which she will fall into his arms and kiss him passionately.

"Great question, Camo. I would say because you are of a pure soul, you can help anyone in need. Remember, women are wonderful human beings, and if you see any woman in distress, you can definitely try to go help. We want to show The Strangers our kindness, and as men, we can do it using our strength. You must never use your strength to hurt a woman, is that understood?"

"Yes. Mister Teacher, can I have a weapon?"

The teacher laughs and Camo is surprised. The other teacher never laughs at anything he says, she just scowls at him and makes him feel stupid.

"Sorry, Camo. We don't encourage weapons in this house. Weapons may seem cool, but they are impure and can lead to your soul becoming lost just like The Strangers."

After class is over, Titanium and Camo go to work.

I watched Camo as he bent down to get a book off the bottom shelf of the cart. His muscles flex as he raises his arm to put the book on the bookcase. I like the tight t-shirt and jeans he wears everyday. His jeans make his butt look amazing. Mother would probably think his clothes were stupid because they weren't designed by Dolce & Gabbana. I got in another fight with her when I got back from work last night because I told her I did not make a date with Marcus. She of course did her usual, 'what the hell is wrong with you Verona' speech. I can't wait for Dad to come home from his movie. He talks to me like I'm a normal human being. I really want to talk to Camo. Maybe I should just give him a different task. I'm really torn because I like watching his arms when he puts books on the shelves.

"Hey, Camo? Would you mind coming over here for a second?"

Camo walks over to me, looking nervous. I hope it's because he likes me and not because he's scared of me.


"Do you want to go on break with me?"

Camo's eyes open wide and he shifts his weight.

"Uh... I- um, yeah, sure."

How adorable, he does like me. I tell Titanium that Camo and I are going on break. He smiles and nods at me, and I think he winked at Camo. I take Camo to Fettucini's, a pasta restaurant within walking distance. As we walk, I look at his hair blowing in the wind. It's sexy. We order our food and sit at a cozy table next to a window.

"These noodles are really good, Verona. Thank you for taking me here."

His voice is deep and sensual, and I feel quite turned on by it. I am impressed that he managed to say two complete sentences to me without any nervousness showing through. He seems really down to earth and appreciative of the small things in life. I smile at him and sip my soda.

"You're welcome, Camo. You know, I think you're cute."

Camo coughs and punches his chest gently to dislodge whatever small food particle he was choking on. His nervousness is back and as adorable as ever. I push his soda glass towards him. He drinks a large amount and smiles at me.

"That's cool. I think you're hot."

I laugh and smile. Perfect. A cute, down to earth guy who is completely blunt. I like him even more. 

Zinfandel is sitting with Abilene in the classroom for their special lesson.

"Welcome, ladies. Today we are going to have a day of girl talk without the boys."

Zinfandel raises her hand.

"Miss Teacher, I don't understand why boys are so mean sometimes. I'm still annoyed at Barry, for those reasons I told you about. I thought we were friends, and I know we both got punished, but he didn't have to be so mean to me."

"Zinfandel, The Leader told me that Barry did respond to your request, but that you were the one who didn't acknowledge him when he did. Do you think you may have misunderstood him because you were upset with him?"

Zinfandel sits back with a contemplative look on her face. The teacher has given her something to think about.

"As ladies, we have been naturally blessed with relational skills, also known as people skills. We are instrumental in nurturing and showing love for those Strangers who come here needing a place to stay. We are the ones who can talk to them about their problems and help them transition emotionally into living in this house and becoming part of this family."

Abilene raises her hand.

"Miss Teacher. I am wondering what other ways there are to make the newcomers comfortable. I've dealt with some newcomers who are very timid, and they act as if they are very terrified of me, even when I smile at them. After they shy away, I often have to turn my attention to another person because I don't know how to proceed."

"Very good, Abilene. The Leader has bought some coffee machines and appropriate entertainment for this purpose. When you are in the Comfort Room talking to these newcomers, sometimes offering them quiet is actually good for them. Sometimes they do not want to talk, and you are right, they are scared of you because they have been so severely wounded in the past. When talking doesn't work, Abilene, pop in a movie, make some coffee, and just sit and hang out with them. Once they see that you are not going to hurt them, they will be more willing to talk. Also, the coffee machine is capable of just creating hot water so hot cocoa, tea, and cider are also available for those who would prefer something other than coffee."

Titanium is looking out the window as he puts an item on the display table. Absolon catches his eye as he walks across the street with his guitar. He sets up his amplifier and starts playing in front of the bookstore again. Titanium wonders if Absolon knows he's there, just one story up, wishing they could get to know each other.

I come back from break with Camo and see that aqua haired boy again. I'm curious about him, so I tell Camo to go inside and that I will come in later.

"Hey. You're really good. I like your songs."

He puts his guitar away and turns to me.

"Oh, hi. Thank you."

"I was wondering if you would like to come inside and be the regular music for the coffee shop... I'd pay you, of course."

"Whoa, seriously? That's awesome. I'd love to."

"Yeah? Ok. You can come whenever you want and I'll pay you an hourly rate."

Titanium sees Verona talking to Absolon and feels slightly jealous. Absolon is standing there nodding at her. Titanium wishes he could talk to Absolon, but he probably ruined whatever friendship they could have had when he pissed Absolon off at the park.

Today's segment went really well. It's crazy to think of all the hardships of my past and how lucky I am to be where I am today. Absolon has a habit of changing his hairstyle all the time, as well as a knack for matching it to the memories we talk about in the documentary. I wonder if he does it on purpose to help me remember, or if it's just a coincidence. With all the shit that happened to me, it's a miracle I am able to feel this much. Absolon's my miracle. I love him.


  1. Awww.. So cute!(the ending) haha This was a really good update. As I was reading the differences you made between men and women, I don't think I could've wrote it better myself when it came to a storyline like this. I loved how you described how different they are from one another, but I don't like that they felt like they needed to switch up the teachers.. The female teacher could've easily taught them all of that information, but that's the Compound for you. *rolls eyes* Haha!
    Ooo and that Leader! I hate him!
    Verona's awesome, I love how curious she is about Camo and I still love Camo's bluntness, I was so surprised by his reply to her "I think you're hot" lol, so Camo.. But, they're perfect for one another.
    Can't wait for more! :)

    1. Thank you! Sadly, the whole splitting up of genders was based in truth. I often had to endure "women's night," in which I had to sit around and watch dumb romantic comedies, eat chocolate, and talk about flowers, marriage, and babies. *fake throw up* The only part I could tolerate was the chocolate eating. My favorite movie is The Dark Knight, if that says anything about the extreme contrast between me and the box I was put in. I heard that "men's night," was where the boys got together and played basketball or foosball or played Halo (at the time, Halo was the big xbox game). I found this ironic because I played on the basketball team in grade school, and kicked ass at foosball and Halo.
      This was the point where I became quite like Camo. His character is based off the point in time when I started thinking everything was stupid and took pleasure in making other members feel uncomfortable. I ran off to play xbox at one of the hang out times. I of course got in trouble and was told to come back upstairs with the women, to which I replied, "What is the matter with me liking video games?" I got told it was unnatural for me and that I might tempt the boys by being down there with them. Then I said, "So me shooting them in the face is tempting to them?" They ignored me because they couldn't answer my question and proceeded to talk about flower arrangements. I then replied, "Flowers are stupid." LOL.
      Verona's character is based off me now, doesn't beat around the bush, doesn't take shit from people, and knows what she wants.
      The Leader's just a dumbass, based off some dumbass who was in charge back in the day. LOL!
      Glad you liked it! :)

    2. You know, right now this makes me think of my grandmother... she told me a lot about gardening and cooking... and climbing trees and riding bikes, and, well, War. Thank you Granny for not being into stereotypes despite of being born in 1904! *lol*
      I guess a lot of people feel comfortable when put into the gender boxes, and safe. Well, chacun a son gout, but it makes me both angry and sad to see someone FORCED into a box >.<

    3. Aww, you granny sounds like a great lady! Yeah, I have no idea why in the hell people think that just because society says it "should be" that makes it right? Geez, people seriously need to think for themselves. LOL. The whole "feel safe" thing pisses me off too. I get being safe, and like, surviving, you know, not doing things that would kill me, but being safe by living in a hole because of fear is stupid. The boxes make me sooo uncomfortable! It may work for some, but definitely not for me. I love this quote from the movie Australia:

      "Just because it is, doesn't mean it should be."

  2. Ah, gender stupid, and so wrong. Andthe Compound really does like to draw a hard line between the sexes.

    I'd like to know more about Barry, actually. We've only gotten other people's interpretations of him. I'd feel differently about him if I thought he intentionally hurt Zin because he was made at her, or if he just didn't care he was hurting her. But, I don't feel like I know for a fact that it wasn't just cluelessness and inexperience on his part.

    I get so excited whenever it looks like Absolon and Titanium might finally get some time together. So it's nice you let us see them as they are in the present while there is still so much doubt in the past.
    Camo and Verona really are perfect for each other.

    1. Thank you! :) Ugh, gender stereotyping. One of the MOST annoying things in the universe. I will never understand how anyone expects everyone to fit neatly into a pre-made box.
      LOL, Camo and Verona are really fun to write because generally I'm not the romantic type. I find it fun to show affection in different ways other than being all mushy. People can be blunt and say what's on their mind and still know the other person loves them.

  3. Well, the ending was sweet. As for the beginning and middle... ugh. Sexist was a good title for this chapter. Sexist on both sides.
    Oh, and I liked Camo's 'date'. :)

    1. I know right? Sexism is so awesome... NOT. :) I liked his date too, I don't think all couples have the same way of showing love, some may seem less romantic than others, but they still love each other just as much.

  4. Wow, this was just...Disgusting. Yes, women are more nurturing but that doesn't mean they have to stay home 24/7 and look after their kids. *Rolls eyes*

    Barry should've suffered some kind of punishment. It doesn't matter if Zinfandel didn't respond, he still could've asked her if she was okay..That's just common sense and common courtesy, these people are ridiculous. "Oh yeah, I did what she asked but she didn't say anything so I just kept going" *Rolls eyes*

    Camo and Verona are so cute together. Absolon is finally going to make some money, I'm curious to see where he's living.

    As far as you and your whole video game situation...I understand! I love playing my ps3 and killing people on GTA and Black Ops and as soon as I get on mic some people curse me out because I'm a girl playing video games..It's funny though. I LOVE violent games. It's pretty cool that you were on the basketball in grade school...I would've never expected you to be into sports (no offense). I always loved doing boys vs girls basketball with my brother and his friends when I was younger and last year I met these guys on a basketball court and eventually I brought my girlfriends and we would do boys vs girls nearly everyday in the summer...There was alot of shit talking lol but it was fun...Goodtimes.

    1. I know right? Would you believe that some of the things I wrote here while they were in class were actually things they were teaching me? I never fit into the "girl box," because I didn't care if i got married, and I really don't like children. LOL.

      Well, as of now we don't know what happened to Barry, other than his and Zinfandel's intimacy session was unpleasant. Barry didn't care about Zinfandel's feelings, all Barry cares about is doing his duty to The Compound. But I'm not saying any more because more about that situation is revealed later on. :)

      Aww, thanks, LOL. Camo and Verona are my first attempt at writing a couple who falls in love. Heehee, Absolon's luck has changed for the better because Verona is a kind girl.

      LOL, isn't it funny that some people still think girls can't play video games well? XD Haha, it's okay about the basketball thing, no offense taken. I enjoyed it a lot, and I think it was good I did that when I was younger because now I can run pretty easily. All that running back and forth on the basketball court really does good for training me to run fast. LOL. It's only for short distances though, haha, I'm not the best at running long distance. XD

    2. OMG I THOUGHT I WAS THE ONLY ONE! LOL I have very little patience for people sometimes so, I don't really like kids and they're just annoying sometimes...but I hope that in the future I will learn to be more patient because I do have a desire for marriage and children when I'm much much older lol. In my church they say crazy stuff like "Ohh, back then it was normal for 13 year olds to have babies and women shouldn't have jobs today" I actually had a long conversation with them after they said all that...It was heated lol

      I was having a conversation about video games with some guy and his friend today and he was like "Ohh you don't look like the type to play video games" lol...They're weirdos...
      You probably would've been good at track too, I wish I could run fast...Hell, I wish I was athletic lol. It's good to be able to run from danger but I try not to live in fear.

    3. LOL, right back at you. :D I always get headaches when little kids are screaming and running around in restaurants, and I get really mad. LOL. The last thing I need or want is my own little kids running around and screaming in my home. So... LOL, I am married, but to me, marriage doesn't mean an automatic "have to expand your family" so I told my boyfriend at the time, now my husband, that I don't want kids. Ever. He's okay with it. If he wasn't I wouldn't have married him. ;)

      LOL yeah, medieval times and all that, like they used to just use girls to have babies. It's sad that people still think that applies in modern times. *rolls eyes*

      Haha, it amazes me that people always think there are "types" of people, like you have to dress a certain way to "look like" you play video games. LOL. I'm always thinking like what does that even mean? Jesus.

      Yeah, I always did decently on my track days when I was in grade school, and it was pretty fun. LOL. Aww, haha, it's never too late to start, I mean, I don't play sports anymore, but I do go jogging and I work out almost every day. I totally agree with not living in fear, I don't really fear much, but I think at the same time, it's good to have the skills needed in case danger comes around. I also think like if I'm ever in a movie where I have to pretend like I'm running for my life, I could do it easily if I keep practicing. LOL.


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