Come at Midnight

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New Year’s Eve 2006, about to be 2007. Night of revelry and forgetting. This is the night you fuck a stranger at midnight or, rather, in the hours after. Perhaps it will be a worthwhile person you will fuck again later, and perhaps it won’t, but at least it will be a new person.

"Six o’clock," Thomas told his ex, Sabina. Today, of all days, she insisted on Discussing Things in Person. "Absolutely no later than six." An argument with an ex that started late and dragged on too long could ruin his night. He was going to two parties.

"Fine," she said. "Six it is. Whiskey Lounge."

The streets were already teeming when he went outside. On Sixth Avenue, he was swept up by a river of chanting celebrants. As he tried to escape the crowd, he noticed that many faces seemed angry. Some people carried banners. "No blood for oil," they were chanting, "No blood for oil."

He’d just reached the subway when Sabina called his cellphone. It was 5:47. "I’m here!" she screamed. "Some hedge fund rented the whole place. It’s two hundred Harvard kids flashing their money. I can’t hear anything, and I’m getting groped! Meet me back at my place!"

Sabina’s apartment was on Forty-Eighth and Seventh, with a clear


view of Times Square if you leaned out the window. Forty minutes to fight his way ten blocks there. Crowds had already backed up past Fiftieth. He had to duck under police barricades to enter her building.

At the door she met him in a black silk slip and nothing else. He came in, and they looked at each other. Sabina had long dark hair and a figure as tall and appealing as wine being poured. Her eyes were almond-shaped; a few freckles stood out like spices on her cheekbones and nose.

"So," she said.


"You haven’t even called."

"Well, after the things we said last week…."

"So we said some things," Sabina said. Through the black slip,

"Get your clothes off," Sabina said, falling on the black leather.

her nipples appeared hard. "You just didn’t feel like calling? You can’t treat your girlfriend like that. All I wanted was to hear from you."

The roar of the crowd, twelve floors below, was audible. Everything was out there.

A faint blush rose under her freckles. "If I’m not your girlfriend anymore," she said, at last, acidly, "I’d like to be notified."

"It’s been a confusing year," Thomas said. "Sometimes things aren’t easy to define."

"Get a dictionary," she said. "Coward starts with C."

"Possessive starts with P," he said. "Bitch starts with B. I should go. I have plans."

"Fine," she said.

"Okay," he said.

When they kissed, the black slip slithered off her body like it had never been there. She was unbuckling his belt and freeing his cock, already hard, as he kissed and bit her neck, and as with one hand he gripped her small, perfect ass, lifting her almost off her feet so she had to stand on tiptoes while she massaged his cock with both hands. She pulled him to the sofa.

"Get your clothes off," Sabina said, falling on the black leather. To the dim mad noise of the revelers below, he did. She had tears in her eyes. "Get in me," she said. Thomas knelt and she guided his cock inside her. That perfect, familiar fit. That fevered, almost psychotic pleasure of leaving this world, sliding into a different one. "Fuck me," she said. "Kill me."

Her knees draped over his shoulders, forehead grinding into his collarbone. Her fingers clawing his ribs. Her sudden silence as she climaxed, face turning red, freckles disappearing. As soon as she had finished, he pulled out and came on her breasts and throat.

She lay panting on the sofa, fumbled for a box of tissues. Thomas went to the window, opened it, leaned out. The screams. It wasn’t even 8 p.m., and the crowd stretched from Times Square to the park. A hundred thousand, he thought. What was there to be so excited about?

Sabina joined him at the window.







The crowd chanted something that sounded like "TAAAAY-HA MING-GUK[clap clap]! TAAAAY-HA MING-GUK[clap clap]!"

"They’re saying ‘South Korea, South Korea,’" Sabina said. Her mother was Korean.

"Wow," Thomas said. "There can’t be that many Koreans. They must be very well organized." He looked up and down the street.

They watched until they got too cold.


"Madness out there," Sabina said, closing the window. Beautiful goose bumps.

"I should go," Thomas said.

She didn’t look at him.


"I have plans," he said.

"Go." Wordlessly he got dressed, left her standing naked and desultory at the fridge, eating grapes. Downstairs he emerged into an orgiastic tide of human beings, their garbage and warm breath and arbitrary nonsensical enthusiasm. All over the place, American flags: pins, buttons, stickers, miniature flags, big proud banners. Support Our Troops. Uniformed cops massed at barricades, trapping the horde on Seventh. There were cops on horses. People eating pizza with their mittens on. Everyone happy. Everyone screaming. Things flying from windows above. The crowd, overjoyed, shouting, "WOOOOOO!" and "TWO THOUSAND SEVEN!"

Okay, fuck this, Thomas thought.

"We should come together," she said, "right at midnight, when the ball drops. The countdown will be just for our orgasm."

He walked back into Sabina’s building, rode the elevator back up.

She opened the door in a scuffed blue bathrobe.

"It’s really chaotic out there," he said.


"Can I stay?"

She sighed. "You know your behavior is frequently outrageous, don’t you?" He nodded. She walked back inside, shaking her head. With great relief, he followed.

On the living-room carpet, she lay down on her back. Undid her robe, exposed the long paleness of her body. He knelt. He ran his tongue from the sole of her left foot up her calf to the underside of her knee and then along her inner thigh until it touched her vulva.

Sabina trembled. "I hate you," she said. "Keep going."

He did.

Time became meaningless when he went down on her. That was his favorite thing. How the world disappeared and in its place there was only the experience. Her wetness, her warmth. Her moans, steadily rising, turning staccato. Becoming gasps. Going sharply silent. She came like an attack, hips bucking up off the carpet, grinding against his face.

"Fuck," she whimpered after. "You can’t just make me forget everything like that, it’s not fair. I still hate you. Yes, kiss my pussy."

Getting tissues from her desk a few minutes later, Thomas noticed her laptop open to a grainy YouTube video. "What were you watching on YouTube?" he asked. "Funny cats? Mexicans brawling?"

"Saddam Hussein getting hanged," Sabina said. "I was about to watch, but I changed my mind."

"It’s on YouTube already?" he said, then clicked "play."

Elderly Saddam Hussein being walked to the high gallows in a dim, grimy chamber. Harsh voices chanting Arabic, a name, a prayer. Blurred shapes as the camera phone was jostled. The dictator starting to speak. A brutal clang as the trapdoor fell. An incredulous clamor. The dangling body, the broken neck.

“Fuck my ass,” she said. Only when stoned did she demand anal.

Thomas got up and went to the window. Sabina slipped free of her robe and joined him there. The crowd screamed.

"I’m tired," he said.

She led him to the sofa. They sat. "Be naked with me," she said. After he undressed, she arranged a goose-down comforter over them; as always, their mutual nudity felt sublimely intimate. He didn’t feel this way with other girls.

"They were yelling when he fell," Thomas said, "like it was a touchdown or something."

She put her hand on his leg. They smoked half a joint with the lights off and turned on the TV, which showed pop stars performing in Times Square before the huge crowd. Sabina went to the fridge, and he watched her beautiful slim body float away in flickering darkness, float back. They ate cold grapes from a bowl. He felt numb. On TV, the ebullient crowd counted down to eleven o’clock — practice for midnight. He and Sabina smoked more. They made out a little. Her hand crept to his cock under the comforter and she idly, gently jerked him off for a while, massaging the underside of the shaft and teasing his balls, but he didn’t come. Going to the window again, they looked down naked on the terrifying multitudes. They threw grapes at them.







It was 11:39. Thomas kissed her ear, nuzzled a hand into the cleft of her ass. Sabina made a pleased sound.

"We should come together," she said, "right at midnight, when the ball drops. The countdown will be just for our orgasm."

"Okay," he said.

At 11:44 she was on her hands and knees facing the TV as he penetrated her from behind. He liked this position best. The long slope of her back. The upside-down, petite heart-shape of her ass. Her head down, bobbing with each thrust. Beads of sweat on the back of her neck. Gasps. Damp velvet pussy. His thumb on her asshole, her breath sharply indrawn. Saddam. A hard slap. Red handprint on her left buttock. Moqtada. His head swimming, his cock aching, her hips rocking back to meet it. Moqtada Moqtada.

Thomas gasped, pulling out of her. It was 11:50.

"What are you doing?" she yelped, her body still rocking forward and back.

He got up, walked to the glowing laptop, shut it off, closed it, and put it in a drawer. Then he knelt behind Sabina again and slid his cock back inside her. "Sorry," he said. They began to fuck once more, working themselves up, finding the obscene rhythm again. Her ass was turning red where he’d slapped it; he slapped it again. 11:52.

"Fuck my ass," she said. Only when stoned did she demand anal. "I’m close. I’ll touch myself, I’ll come really hard if I touch myself while you fuck my ass."

Sliding out, he placed the head of his cock against her asshole. "How will it ever fit," she said. She always said that; she liked the sound of it. She was rubbing herself, waiting for him to push inside.

Downstairs, the crowd sustained a lung-bursting roar. Ten million flecks of saliva under the brutal


lights. His eyes flicked to the TV, the harshly glittering ball. "For this year," a newswoman said, "the crystal triangles on the ball feature three doves symbolizing ‘Hope for Peace.’" Behind her the million voices chanted. Overwhelming clamor. Prayers, incantations. Blurred faces glimpsed. In six minutes, the ball would drop suddenly, fall a jarring distance, and stop with a hard jolt.

Leaning away from Sabina, he grabbed the remote and turned the TV off. Now they were in darkness.

"I’m yours," he said. He licked his thumb and rubbed it on her asshole. She liked only minimal lubrication. He pressed his cock into her. The tense resistance at first. The sudden, reluctant, exquisite parting. She groaned through gritted teeth. "Hurts, Jesus, fucking hurts so bad," she groaned, her fingers working intensely. "Yeah, fuck it, fuck my ass…" He began to thrust cautiously.

From the way her body tightened rhythmically around his cock and the speed of her fingers, he knew she was already almost there. He was, too. A jubilant feeling came over him.When the voice outside — the single huge, inhuman voice — roared, "TEN…NINE…" it felt to Thomas like actually there was no crowd out there, that the voice was not roaring for countries or calendars but only for him and Sabina, for the timeless safety of orgasm.

"Fuck it," she was saying, forehead pressed to the carpet, fingers working. "Break my fucking ass."

"SIX…FIVE…" the great voice roared.

Outside, the screams filled the planet.

Her cries became snarls.

"FOUR…THREE…" the great voice roared.

She went absolutely silent, her back arching suddenly, her ass pressing back on his cock and clenching the head of it so hard he thought he might cry out.


He pulled out and ejaculated deliriously, endlessly, on her back. Outside, the screams filled the planet. She collapsed on the carpet. He lay down beside her.

12:06 a.m., January 1. The hour when the revelry goes quiet in your blood and you think about the person you ought to be and the world you want to live in.

"Fuck 2006," Thomas said, sitting up. "And fuck 2007."

"Hm?" Sabina touched his arm, gently, in the dark.

"Fuck the twenty-first century," he said. "Let’s put the blinds down, lock the doors and windows, never leave. I just want to stay here, right here, you and me, and fuck as much as humanly possible until we die of fucking."

"Okay," she said.

"Okay," he said.

Her hand — her slim, gentle hand — moved with exhausted ease from his arm to his cock, where it rested comfortably, like an old friend.  



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©2007 Nick Antosca and
Nick Antosca’s stories have appeared in The Barcelona Review, Identity Theory, The Antietam Review, Hustler, and others. His first novel, Fires, was published in January 2007 by Impetus Press. Visit his website here.