Fiction based upon a personal dream (4-15-2011); embellished to clarify dream jumps.
|The club was off any so-called beaten path, several miles into the farm lands of my uncle’s corn and soy crops and hidden from any accidental exposure to passer bys. Not a design of the club but a default, as it was built on the very land that my uncle farmed with his five sons for over 60 years. It’s unclear of how the building came to be but the evolution was a progression of many years of multi-uses and periods of vacancy, neglect and reoccupation that repeated itself numerously. As additions were made and removed, repairs or updates and the recalculation of needs meet, the footprint and profile of the building changed with each use and occupancy. The club itself, progressed very much in the same manner with only one difference, Dean never left. He sat in his office up high in the converted loft and monitored his computer, electronics and collected information on business and innovations in technology.
Dean loved that old building and he loved having the club, even during times that it was not operable for one reason or another. However, Dean did not find cleaning a priority on his list, not even when he decided to convert the old building into the club from the very beginning. Opening the club with the remnants and debris left from other uses and occupants expedited the opening and added to the original aura of the environment he was satisfied with in the beginning, be it awkward and difficult to traverse from one level to another. The most unique aspect of the club was an awkward, enclosed ramp to a high upper room that was reserved for the most loyal and yet, somewhat bazaar or absurd patrons. This narrow and steep incline was no more than a crawl space completely padded and upholstered in gold faux fur from a nineteen seventies styling. My first impression was one of impossible assent. I could see no way to scale the steep, fur lined slope of the entry to the special room, yet the allure of the room was too strong and demanded my attempt to explore.
The club had not been popular for many years and yet, Dean continued to sit at his desk in the upper loft-room minding his business and satisfying his curiosity with electronics and the internet. The evening I entered the club for the first time was during this business drought and only with a desire to check out the old building and explore its cavernous rooms and mysterious passageways. With a few other party place explorers with me, we made the trek out to the farm lands and parked outside the catawampus building. We walked the dirt incline to the entry, unblocked the entry by moving the plywood panel just enough to the right to access a way to crawl inside through the lower left side opening we created. The first room was quite large and vast with a very high ceiling yet extremely dark, dusty and cluttered. The entry opening was much higher than the floor below but entry was not denied due to the pile up of in descript debris that created a high platform, irregular and unsafe as it seemed. The room was dank and cloudy with dust in the air that made visibility nearly impossible. We could see an interior opening in the far wall that exposed a room that seemed much more inviting. That room instantly became our target gathering spot to map out our plans for farther exploring. Navigating our way across the piles of burlap bags, farming equipment and ill kept items, we managed our way to a doorway on the right wall just around the corner from the wall opening to the distant room we had aimed for. The room was most refreshing to enter and was upon first impression well kept. Albeit, in descript and nothing memorable, it did lead us to the doorway to the fur lined ramp that gave access for those joining the upper room activities.
Unknown to me at that time, my life was about to change forever. Within a moment the awe inspiring gold fur and intimidating ramp became a quest that lasted a major part of my lifetime. There was no way of denying it then or now as I reflect back upon that night of innocent adventure.
Several of us ventured up the ascending ramp and entered the room at the top as the hallway ramp turned to the right and landed us inside our destination. The room was instantly a gratifying reward to our efforts. Once before unimaginable became real and tangible. We gasped at the wonders found inside. An array of questionable entertainment options peaked and far exceeded our wildest imaginations. Themed on, around and throughout every sexual fantasy of man, the room was near impossible to take in and yet undeniably impossible to ignore. Evidence of prior guests and their fetishes emanated from every fixture, devise, and item on display. My, we had a wonderful time over the next several hours exploring, imagining and guessing what activities must have gone uninterrupted and without judgment in this space.
The club appeared different now, it transformed magically around our midst. There was more light now and faint music that created a feeling of joyous celebration all throughout this marvelously appointed entertainment world. The clutter now exposed, was compounded by extreme levels of confetti, streamers and deflated balloons all gathering dust. Layers and layers of dark, dank dirt and debris on the dancing platforms, stairways and stages that were now visible and strategically located throughout each of the main rooms of the club, now revealed years of club activities. Soon we found ourselves exploring the dilapidated liquor cabinets, breaching any obstacles and overindulging in libations. I questioned the club’s location and how being so remote had been successful in the past. Knowing how deteriorated the business was when we arrived, there was no more wonder. However, as I glanced out an upper level window, the surprising amount of vehicles, old, odd and new, assured me that success could be had. Cars, trucks, vans and wagons were parked bumper to bumper and finder to finder down each and every shoulder of the grass and dirt roadways that wined throughout the farmland. First we acknowledge that we must have generated interest from others and stimulated others to join us at the club. Only this newly developed crowd could we not seem to find anywhere, but we did not spend time or worry looking either. We continued to enjoy ourselves through the wee hours of the morning and found no boundaries to our newfound resources. We laughed, danced and drank more than our fair share of free liquor. Our party was not coming to an end anytime soon.
A blue-green light, shining from the darkness of the loft-room highly perched above all other rooms and platforms, beamed across the great entry room and exposed the dusty rafters above. Soon it revealed its source as a computer screen as well as a tower of yellow-gold router lights that ran up and down the computer components to the right of the screen. It had caught my attention through a small interior window of the room and highlighted the profile silhouette of a man sitting with his back to the window overlook while studying images and programs on the illuminated screen. Within an instant, I realized that our party was over. Dean was in his office the entire time during our escapades, silently, he had continued with his attraction to the computer, and ignored our overindulgences.
I was always fond of Dean. As the middle brother of five boys born to one of my mother’s younger sisters, he was my first cousin and a dear friend. I was embarrassed of our behavior in his club and of the resent invasions of the club’s secrets. I instantly gathered the revelers to organize a payback for our party. Not having knowledge of any route to the loft-room, I made the decision to continue my payback without Dean’s consent. He did not seem bothered and the condition of the club showed no prior interest in cleaning and clutter removal, so I took the lead and organized a total clean up and clear out.
The troops were quite responsive to the action plan. Their enthusiasm was unsurpassed and imperative to the monumental results of our efforts. The club will never be the same. I started right away gathering glassware, as others sorted through debris, table clutter and trash as to salvage what was of any future value. As each one of the group chose a task, they would shout out what they were doing so others would choose another. We were enthusiastic and motivated. We were not to be overwhelmed. Our activity below caught Dean’s attention for a moment; long enough for him to step to his overlook window, smile, nod approvingly at me and return to his seat. I stood silently and dumbfounded while holding glassware with my fingers clasped inside the rims for gripping several at once. Interpreting his nod as a license to continue, I instantly gained confidence in our task and cheered the group on. Seeing that our progress was contingent upon more drastic measures, I announced a few directions out to the group and started making immediate progress. We started at the upper most levels and knocked, pushed, and brushed everything of no value to the floors below. Aging cigarette butts, clumped in piles on the tables, counter tops and bars, now fell free to the floor to soon be swept away. Glassware, flatware, candle holders and objects of art were gathered and taken to a safe place for washing and storing. Confetti debris, once fell in celebration, now fell in defeat. Spider webs tore, dirt dabber nests crumbled and dust found no home. The transformation had begun.
A mysterious spell had come over us as time was immeasurably shortened to find us standing victoriously in the center of the club while it sparkled and shined from a never before cleaning. Splintered wooden surfaces were magically transformed into sleek metal, stone and glass. Paper print covered planked walls were now glass windows from floor to towering ceiling. Stairways that were once open wood risers with unsure spindles and shaky handrails were transformed into majestic stair cases with concrete platforms and piped handrails. The light was bright as the sun now showered the club with brilliant midmorning light. The colors reflected through the crystal prisms hanging from the oversized light fixtures, sparkled rainbows through the glass table tops throughout the club’s main bar room and danced on the sleek highly polished stone floors. The complicated accesses to the upper rooms were now clearly visible as the multi level design of the club became evident with several different routes and platforms with turnabouts. The curiosities of the club compounded as newly discoverable areas, lounges and rooms were now accessible. The building now stood proud and solid with modern, stone walls, glass windows and a secure flat roof which overhung the sidewalk that wrapped around the building on all four sides, just enough for shading while allowing the flattering light from the outside in.
Dean came down from his perch above the newly transformed club to meet with me and introduce himself to my friends. He was genuine and sincere as he stepped backwards from one foot to the other in a circle with his eyes dancing from one surface to another, one view to another and then to me. He immediately recognized the opportunity that had just opened up for the both of us. His invitation to stay around and help him with the club was my greatest compliment and achievement.
The foundation of my relationship with Dean was now more stable than ever before and much more conducive to a future of prosperity for the both of us. Dean was self employed with no business partners until the day dawned upon a clean, fresh and well appointed club that met the criteria for success. We had a wonderful future operating the club and shared great success.
From the very beginning, Dean and I started to grow fonder of each other. He would often sit on one of the contemporay, plush leather chairs or sofas in the club as I tended the business. He would have his cocktails and entertain the patrons and staff with his stories and yarns, both fact and fiction. I was supportive and quite satisfied with the arrangement. We shared a large owners’ quarters that we had connected to the club. Our private areas were reserved for our off time and shared only with each other. Any sexual escapades either of us ventured on were kept out of our sanctuary. He had a wonderful suite that was smartly appointed and designed like the club with many modern amenities and current contemporary styling. My area was just as nice but was homier and warmer in décor. Our shared area was high end and furnished with the most comfortable furnishings and up to date computer systems and electronics for our private use.
We grew closer than I had ever imagined being. We shared intimate secrets, emotional trials and helped each other with our private issues or concerns. We were notably found of each other and the staff and patrons all knew that we managed the club as one. We often kept each other’s company when in the club and out, sharing work stations or his holding court at my work station while I tended bar and kept his and the patrons’ glasses filled. Sometimes he would take a station at the day-bar after we added the patio and pavilion to the club property. I spent my afternoons sitting across from his station, monitoring his service and reminding him how many drinks he had. I kept a close eye on his cash till and made sure that he charged patrons properly and balanced to the standards we held the staff to. He was tolerant of my supervision and often joked about how broke he would be without me. I would remind him of how broke he was before me. These were always jokes with a little pun and an obvious truth.
Dean had a way with people. I was more business focused, although I was quite social when the mood was right. Dean was fun loving, high spirited and laughed a lot. He was spending less time on his computer and much more time in the club developing friendly relationships with nearly everyone who stopped in. He was a slick one with the ladies, too. Several young women fell for his sweet talk, charisma and dashing good looks. He had a reputation for getting to home plate with the ladies before they knew that they were in the game. He would go steady with someone, but never more than a few weeks. He kept himself open to the market and enjoyed the shopping. There were a few handsome guys that turned his head as well. I knew what to look for and pretty well pegged his type by the comments he made about the patrons or some of my friends. He was drunk one night at the old club when he found the need to ask me if I knew what bi-sexual meant. Being gay orientated, I eagerly fueled the conversation and helped him stay on his roll. Sure enough, he confessed that he was bi and enjoyed men more than women but had a problem being out and gay. Therefore, he felt safer saying that he was bi. He had several male friends and some were quite notably gay. Dean was cautious and used the term “cool” when speaking of other men who were like minded. He always kept a lady’s number handy though. Being with his lady friends assured him that he was truly not gay.
As the years progressed, the popularity of the club grew and supported an abundant life for those of us involved. Many of my friends who were significant contributors to the transformation of the club became long term, humble and loyal employees. Ever eager to participate, support and encourage ongoing progress, many of them continued to play integral parts in the ever growing popularity and continued evolution of the club. Their partnership in all of the club’s endeavors brought many new ideas in entertainment to the forefront of modern club amenities. There was no shortage of imagination or resources that enabled the fruition of our goals and dreams.
As the club grew stronger and livelier so did the fantasies and fetishes of the patrons. Many patrons of long term loyalty intermingled and supported the newer patrons, offering support without judgment. Soon the club’s family of patrons became pillars to the clubs success and evolution. The once bazaar activities of the upper room became common place throughout the club property and was acceptable behavior for many years until fetishes no longer needed a place to be exercised. It was one of Dean’s ideas to add the wooden speed tracks to the property. Starting with just a small track with only a couple of slopes, dips and high point trills, Dean began his creation of what he thought the new error of club entertainment would consist of.
The speed-slide track was similar to a wooden roller coaster track with no iron wheel rails. Instead, the track was a slick wooded ramp of polished planks with side rails on the higher curves and most dangerous areas but no guards or protection on the main ways. I likened it to a roller derby track, yet out in the open, with many levels, and the human body is the carriage. The thrill seeker starts the track by sliding down a velocity ramp that magnified his speed. With high velocity speed the slider entered the track and slid as far as his speed would allow. Sliding the length of the ramp, spinning, twisting and tumbling off any section of the body that he can control, the slider depended upon the dips to magnify his speed to prolong the slide and to overcome the highest peaks of the track. The slide was terminated upon the slider’s stop, natural or interrupted, or the loss of control that caused the slider to fall from the track.
Dangerous and sometimes, deadly, the speed-slide track was expected to start a revolution in the entertainment industry and Dean had to include it on the club property. The build site was just across from the back entry to the club’s original building and spanned the back of the property where corn and soy fields once grew. In the beginning the track was simple and sliders enjoyed a small thrill without much opportunity for extreme danger or injury. Most slides ended within a few seconds of spinning on one’s buttocks and spinning a few turns.
I could not dedicate my faith in the speed-slide phase and spent much less of my energy on the project than Dean did. He researched speed-slides across the country. He was obsessed with having the most up to date features added and soon the small track grew larger and larger before my very eyes.
It was upon my return from an extended time out from the club scene that my lack of support for the speed-track manifested into an all-out disagreement with Dean. There was nothing that I was concerned about because our relationship was founded on being straight forward and honest with our thoughts.
As I neared the property, I found Dean standing outside under a tree next to the gate to the back section. He was studying the new additions to the speed-slide and mapping out the footprint of the new, bigger, better, faster and more thrilling slide track. He was also standing next to a precocious wooden contraption that looked like a garden swing but had some other unidentifiable purpose. He was animated and excited about the new plans and the pending development of his entertainment complex. I was concerned then about the expense, focus and logistics of having additional speed-slides when their contribution to the entertainment industry was still questionable. Dean would not hear my concerns and quickly dismissed the topic. Then, the conversation turned. He seemed rehearsed and cold as he stared me in the eye, and began his speech. It was then obvious that he had not planned his decision but was being loyal to his cause. He told me that I was above reproach during the time we were building the club to its glory but my job was now complete and my obligations had been met. There would be no more need for me in the club or any of the future development of the club property. I, in fact, was dismissed and no longer a business partner. He asked me to leave but I had to digest this conversation and see my club family working back at the day bar.
I took my time going to the day bar at the club compound. I rested, gathered my thoughts and courage then headed out to the bar later in the afternoon. When I arrived, the staff was busy with several outside bar spaces filled and the interior area full. The girls were running cocktails and snacks to the patrons and enjoying back and forth banter that entertained everyone as normal. They had no knowledge of the prior conversation had with Dean. Dean was working the outside bar and had several patrons ready for addition libations as well as a few that wanted to tab out. The girls were busy with their patrons but seemed troubled to see that Dean was not reliable with his. I noticed their worry and quickly took over Dean’s station. I tabbed out the few patrons, freshened several drinks and stabilized the work load. Turning to the girls, I asked where Dean was. They had no answer but one of Dean’s patrons told me that he had served up several drinks and got a call to the inside are that he stepped away to check on.
Once everyone was satisfied and the reality of something gone awry, I told the girls and patrons that I must go check on Dean. I was encouraged to go and leave the bar tending to the girls who now had everything under control.
I went to the small casual bar inside to find everything going smoothly. Then I hastened into the main club which was closed during the day and checked the glass bar out first. No sign of Dean. I began to worry now, prior to now, I thought Dean was just on one of his escapades with a patron, or distracted back in his office where he is often found when he goes missing. As I checked behind the bars in the main club and went from storage area to office, I continued to grow anxious. Leaving the glass bar for the second time, I heard a noise from below. There were no rooms below this floor but I remembered that there were floor cavities between the sub floor and the newer frosted glass floor. Light housings, support framing and electrical wiring were routed below the floor panels during previous remodels and additions. The noise was obvious now so I took a hold of one of the floor panel corners and pulled up. To my surprise but not shock, Dean was there. Here Dean had been tied, bound, cuffed and shackled with his hands behind his back, feet up to his butt, naked and well ridden.
I lifted Dean from the floor pit and helped him to the owner’s chambers where we had both lived for years. Finding his bed a mess, sexually oriented toys around and hearing the shower running, I knew he had stepped away from the bar to satisfy a sexual need or curiosity. I found a large, well built African-American man strolling naked into Dean’s bath area. I asked the man who he was and what he was doing there. He continued to step into the shower, ignoring my questions.
Dean confirmed that the man in the shower was an experience that got a little more out of control than expected. Dean had no idea that the man would take bondage play out of the bedroom and was as shocked as I was to be found stuffed below the floor panels. Dean was extremely grateful for my heroism in banishing the man from the property after giving him some straight talk on bondage play. All being said and done, Dean showered, dressed and eagerly went back to the day bar with me.
There was an air of light hearted, high spirited admiration shared between Dean and myself after that incident. He never mentioned my dismissal from the club organization again. We continued our business relationship with him honoring my request to postpone any speed-slide additions to the property. We both agreed to refocus on what made us successful in the first place; a welcoming club environment for everyone, support for our comrades and loyalty to our customers.
With all beginnings there is an end, and so the end of the club’s error had started to be noticed by Dean and I as well as the staff. Patrons were moving to larger towns, the speed-slide phase died within months of its initiation and as successful as the club was we knew that we could not sustain it for much longer. The staff, mostly of less than a few months tenure, now was ever-changing since most of the originals had met partners, fell in love, married and moved. Some were still in the area and others had developed such skills in the entertainment industry that they offered tough competition in their new markets. The club was closed and the building allowed to rest until the next need for it called.
Dean and I separated our partnership and went our separate ways. He met a sweet young lady, got pregnant and settled down for good. I kept in touch with him for a spell but as his family grew; his attention and devotion to them satisfied his needs. I continued on my life journey and found new adventures to embark upon.