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Stefan Bonev


Then my name was Pierre and I was twenty years old. Otherwise my friends called me Pepito because they thought I looked like an Italian. I had nothing against that. They also claimed that I had an introverted character and that was probably true. At the time when I started that story I was studying medicine and I was in my sophomore year. There’s a curious detail I should certainly mention before I start my story. There was something weird about me. Since I was I child I have had the habit of concentrating on different objects until I start to feel like them. I could be a picture on the wall or the table in the kitchen. I could embody everything I wanted. I existed at two places simultaneously - in my own body and in the object I was contemplating.

At that time I lived in a small garret where I was taking dates from time to time. I could not stop my choice on any of them although I wanted to. I spent most of the nights with a cigarette in my hand sitting on the window banister. On the opposite side of the street there was another window behind which I often saw a face that agitated me all the time. I had learned her name- Emily. She was a student, too. I had tried many times to start a conversation at the bus stop but I had never been bold enough. The words tangled on my tongue and my cheeks blushed from the confusion. I felt unworthy for her. Sometimes, sitting by my window, I could see her body in the gap between the curtains. Then the lights would be turned off but I would peer into the darkness for hours with inflamed eyes before I could fall asleep with a craving for the impossible.

I spent many hours at the window expecting her to enter into her room, to turn on the light and finally to take off her pink shirt before she would go to bed. The pink shirt! While I was waiting sometimes I would see it hanged to dry on the balcony.

This happened that morning when I woke up with a head heavy from a late night. The shirt was hanging again on the wash line. It was just washed and water was trickling from it. I concentrated and tried to go through the threads of the fabric. It is surely nice to be embracing that young body, I started to feel how I was undulating at the wash line, I could feel the tickling of the running water, then I lost the possession over my own body. I had just thought that I had never concentrated on an object to that extent when the world spun around. I was at the opposite side and I was waving with the autumn wind. In front of me was my own window. I could see my face, my shoulders, and my arms leaning on the widow, the cigarette between my fingers. Then the image daubed in the distance, the cigarette loosened and fell off. When I rose my eyes, there was nobody sitting on the balcony.

On the next morning Emily came and took me into her room. I had already dried and I felt the warmth of her fingers. At last I was with her! I was excited the way only a pink shirt could be. Then she put me on. I felt her big and frolicsome breasts, the tickling of her sharp nipples. I would give anything to me a man again, to master that body. But I couldn’t. Pepito no longer existed.

Because of my new position I met her friends. I tried to embody into them but nothing happened. I could not cross the barriers of their bodies. The same was with Emily. But I had to go into her at any cost. That way I could be closer to my goal.

I had noticed that she was taking some sort of pills. Maybe antibiotics or something like that. She was taking them twice a day at strictly defined hours. For me it wasn’t a problem to embody into an inanimate object. I waited for the moment when she was taking the pill, and I concentrated on it.

I was swallowed. Then Emily looked long for her missing pink shirt in her wardrobe. And I dissolved into her blood cells, and penetrated all her body. I entangled into her ganglions, and settled in the fissures of her brain. I started to detect whisper-like fragmentary thoughts. I invaded her every single cell. I mingled my thoughts with hers. I took power over her muscles and senses. I could rule over that body as well as she could. I was then Pepito and Emily at the same time. Her motions were uncoordinated in the very beginning. She pulled down everything she touched. Then she would remain silent and preoccupied in front of the mirror. I felt guilty, and a nuisance. I wanted to go out, to embody into something else but I couldn’t. Her body was holding me firmly and I was rambling as a mouse trapped in a snare. It could not last forever like that.

I decided to disclose my existence to her. One morning while she was still laying half asleep in her bed I screwed up my courage and called her in her thoughts. She jumped out of bed and looked around frightened. I expected her to be angry and to protest against my interference. I was surprised when she told me that she was very glad. She had been so lonely and secretly wished to have an inward voice to share with and to ask for advice. We divided our functions. I remember her getting ready for exams. The time was never enough. While she was reading I slept and vice versa. We took all the exams with excellence.

Once Emily mentioned that’s she wanted to kiss me. I told her that I had been dreaming of holding her in my arms. At first our love was a true torment. But soon we came up with a way to do it. I was calling in her imagination my body and she- hers. It turned out to be something incredible from the very first time.We gave freedom to our fantasies and we were doing whatever we craved for. We started to live in our own world - imaginary and real at the same time, and we were happy. We were swimming in imaginary rivers and seas; we were soaring like birds between sky and cosmos.

I noticed that Emmy was concentrating on herself. She became introverted and taciturn. Even it was difficult for me to peer into her thoughts. She started to stand for long in front of the mirror. She became belligerent and nervous. When I asked her, she answered that even she didn’t know what was going on with her.

One morning she woke up and started to kiss my imaginary body and to cuddle with me. When I woke up, she pressed herself close to me tighter and told me that we were going to have a baby. Then she caressed het tummy, but not the imaginary one, the real one.



© Stefan Bonev
© Leda Zaharieva, translated
© E-magazine LiterNet, 04.01.2004, № 1 (50)