The bus rumbled down the street, its tires grumbling at the poor upkeep. Construction crews drifted by behind Ryan’s head, large blocky yellow shapes and men in heavy jackets. The stench of tar and smoke went straight through the closed windows: Ryan reflexively tugged his collar up over his mouth, though even he knew this would do nothing about the vapors.
They drove out of the construction, crawling through rush-hour traffic. Everyone lurched forward—in the elderly/handicapped seats, Ryan lurched to the left—as the bus stopped at a corner. There was an explosive hiss as the hydrolics lowered the front of the bus closer to the curb, a needed assistance to the elderly woman who got on.
Ryan watched her pay her fare and smiled at her as she approached. “Hey Julene,” he called over the whine of the bus’ engine. “How was your day?”
Julene settled two seats away from him and grinned all the way up to her eyes. “Hi, Ryan! Oh, it was just another busy day.” She rolled her eyes exaggeratedly and sighed. “We’re still covering the other department. I’m doubling up at the front desk, and I swear I took 20 calls today.” Her voice was bright, loud, squawky like a goose.
Julene was Ryan’s “bus buddy,” someone he’d seen frequently on his commute and decided to befriend. He could easily have just read a book for the hour-long commute to his office, listened to music or podcasts. But their stretch of the bus route was largely unpopulated and frequently they were the only two people aboard. It was just awkward to see someone nearly every day for a month and not acknowledge them.
To show that he was paying attention to her, he’d recall certain points she brought up and ask her about them a week later. “Your supervisor still giving you a hard time?” he asked, for example. “You mentioned that she was feeling kinda threatened in her position and was looking for things to blame on you. That still going on?”
Warmth and mild surprise always washed over Julene’s face. “I’m surprised you remembered that,” she always said, and her eyes always twinkled at him. “In fact, she had a big meeting with the department head and it must’ve put some of her fears to rest, because we’re back to being best friends again.” She rolled her eyes and laughed, almost braying, reaching out to touch his arm but holding back at the last second. They never made contact, never sat too close. He wondered if this was her upbringing or if that’s what polite society did in her day.
Ryan watched her face work as she talked about the politics in her clinic. Her eyes would look up and her badly mascara’ed lashes would flutter before she launched into a dramatic point in her narrative. Her head would turn slightly as though she were urgently tattling on someone, and her nose would waggle. It had become slightly bulbous with age, but it looked sweet or kindly on her, and her nostrils were large and round when she was excited. Her jowls would shake when she gaped in theatrical shock at the misbehavior of a coworker, and her jaw would drop as she gasped for breath in shock: Ryan could see all of her fillings, the insides of her cheeks glistening and rosy, the flex and contraction of the back of her throat, and the soft, smooth, pink bed of her tongue.
A flawless tongue. No nodes along the edges, no pale scars from decades of accidental bites or burns, no deep cleft or milky discoloration. It was a perfect, pretty tongue, but the fact that Ryan thought of it in this way unnerved him. He wondered about himself, how he’d stare unblinking at her, nearly on the edge of his seat as she babbled on about her workaday woes, waiting to glimpse the interior of this older woman’s mouth. How old was she, he wondered. Ryan was in his early 30s and she could easily have been twice his age, based on the lines in her face, the quality of her skin, and some of the stories she told.
So why was he so fixated on her mouth?
And then, before he knew it, the hour had flown by and she hustled out the door, wishing him a good evening. For the next seven blocks until his stop he would sit there in a dull, warm glow, alone but for the driver, wondering what the hell was wrong with him if he thought this way about an older woman.
* * *
“I haven’t seen you for two weeks!” Julene said, perching two seats away from Ryan. “What happened? Were you in an accident?” Her gray eyes were bright and sharp, and her lips parted and pushed out. Her lower lip trembled slightly, either with the bus ride or some unconscious nerves. Her lips were surprisingly expressive, he noted, perhaps sagging a little with the years but still very animated, very much in her control…
He shook his head violently. What the fuck was wrong with him?
He had been in an accident, a fender-bender. Insurance required him to get x-rays, and though he hadn’t injured himself, they discovered dark masses in his belly fat. “Nothing conclusive,” he said before breaking into jerky sobs.
Julene gripped his shoulder. “Shush, now, just breathe.” Her voice was softer and huskier than he’d ever heard it before. It was relaxing, louder, more resonant. His shirt felt lighter… no, looser. His belt no longer constricted around his waist. His toes wriggled freely in the cool bus air. “There you go, Ryan, that’s it. Just breathe.” Julene’s soft, hot fingers spread over his back, over his chest, around his entire body. He curled up in soft skin, in a grip that felt kindly and protective, and his body responded to it eagerly.
“Now… look up, Ryan.”
Her voice vibrated all around him. The grip loosened and light shone upon his naked body. Wiping the tears away with his forearm, he glanced around. He was sprawled upon a wide bed of flesh, fine lines like fingerprints running everywhere in sharp detail. Behind him, four huge fingers curved upward like a cage; before him, Julene’s face rose and spread like a poster covering a building, a large building.
All her features were tremendous: he could see the caked and clotting mascara in her lashes, all the pale, stiff hairs that quilted her aging, tender cheeks. The round nose arched not far above him, and Julene’s nostrils were huge, round, and dark. Ryan stared up into them, fascinated: as huge as she was, seeing this intimate, awkward shot from this angle made her seem vulnerable, somehow.
Julene smiled at him. Her hips stretched very far to either side, wrinkled and tender lips pasted with cheap lipstick. He could see her skin stretch and wrinkle with the tension of the broad smile, and he crawled up to her to touch it. His tiny, thin fingers slipped between the nearly transparent hairs of her old-woman mustache, and her skin was as soft and fragile as crepe. “So interesting,” he whispered, stroking her upper lip.
Her breath gusted into and around him, a humid wave of citrus candy on top of the very earthy exhaust from her lungs. Light from the bus windows streaked over her teeth, huge teeth, flawed teeth he knelt to study. Her incisors had hairline fractures, and one was missing a small wedge of enamel. They were stained yellow and brown, in places, with decades of coffee and plaque. These busy designs and colors hinted at a longer story, and Ryan laughed quietly as he placed his palms upon his friend’s warm, glossy teeth.
Behind the incisors, her perfect tongue rolled and twitched. Julene’s lips peeled back and bared gums and teeth, and her head canted back slightly, and the thick mattress of her tongue oozed onto her palm. The tip of her tongue nudged against Ryan’s bare knees, his bare thighs, and in touching, it didn’t back off. It filled in the spaces between and around his legs, waiting.
Ryan had the idea that he should have been freaked out by this. It was impossible, he hadn’t heard of anything like this, yet it all felt right. It felt welcoming, inviting. And so he placed his hands upon dozens of taste buds and carefully crawled upon Julene’s tongue. Her warm breath flowed over him, and cooler air blew upon his bare butt when she inhaled. He watched her throat flexing again, larger this time, leading into an inky cavern, a pit that slid down into the very core of this kindly woman. “Right inside you,” he murmured, “into the heart of you. The center of Julene.”
There was no response. Her breath quietly roared around his entire, naked body.
Ryan spread his arms and legs and lay face-down upon Julene’s broad tongue. His face nuzzled into the rear of her tongue, right before the chasm. His fingertips ran over her molars, marveling at their smoothness, and his feet dangled just over her bottom lip. Why did it feel so good to be here, to lie down in her mouth? Why was he so comfortable being naked? He realized one of his hands had snaked under his body. He was reflexively playing with himself. It felt right to do so, like her tongue wanted this. How could he know what a tongue wanted? Nonetheless, he began to stroke his cock into her taste buds.
The light in his friend’s mouth dimmed, and he glanced over his shoulder. Outside two rows of well-used teeth was a movie of a woman’s lips and teeth, with a tiny man inside her mouth as well. Ryan shuddered and realized Julene was taking a video of him in her mouth. That little man was him, and he saw the surprise on his own face as he rolled to his side, cock in fist, reclining on the vast bed of picture-perfect female tongue.
He watched a smile slowly emerge in his expression, and he watched his fist pick up speed. Ryan rolled to his back, writhing pleasantly upon Julene’s tongue. He spread his legs for her smartphone’s camera and took his time gratifying himself. Her breath rasped in his ears. Her saliva left him nice and slick. His own voice echoed down her throat as he climaxed and seized in a powerful orgasm. When he rolled to his front and cleaned himself off on her tongue, his entire body vibrated with the delighted moan that erupted from her huge, plunging throat. There he rested, wearied, emotionally worn-out, but warm and happy and sleepy…
The bus lurched and Ryan caught himself from collapsing from his seat. His brain was jarred into alertness and his eyes darted left and right.
“You’re awake, now?” Julene’s voice was quieter, less resounding, and off to his right.
He was fully clothed, sitting in his usual seat, and Julene was rising to get off at her stop. “You looked like you needed some rest, so I just left you to it,” she said cheerily. “Get yourself a nice nap once you get home, okay?” She winked at him, her dusty rose lips smirking. “And have a great evening.”
His heart pounded as the bus pulled away from the curb. There was a little damp spot in his shorts, he noted. It was a dream, it had to have been, but… He swore quietly, looking at where she’d sat, then out the window for the rest of the ride.
Right before he went to bed, however, an unidentified number texted him with a video file attached. Ryan watched it and cried out in shock.
Then he went to bed, played it again with headphones on and jacked off to it.