The Peril of Dating Celine

The Peril of Dating Celine was originally published by Weird Mask

I bought a pasta machine through an auction website. The seller used the screen-name PastaLover77. The advert mentioned the machine had seen little use and was virtually new. That didn’t seem right, given the seller was a self-proclaimed pasta lover, so I sent a message asking why it had not seen more service. After all, if the seller wasn’t using equipment that produced the thing they loved, maybe it had an inherent flaw. Their response was they’d been unable to use it due to an ongoing health condition.

When the pasta machine arrived, the box included a thank you note. It wished me well with my pasta making future and was signed ‘Celine’. Under her signature she’d drawn a smiley face and added her telephone number. There was something I liked about the mysterious Celine; I don’t know what, but her handwriting and her doodle had a certain attractiveness that made me feel good.

As I looked at the swoops and curves in her signature, my mind wandered. I imagined what Celine looked like, how she walked and talked, her likes and dislikes. I daydreamed about going on a date with her, imagining the smile she’d give when we clinked glasses at the bar, the dishes she’d order when we had dinner, the lingerie she’d wear when we made love between her silken sheets. Celine dominated my thoughts and I found myself gazing at the thank you note, fighting the urge to ring the telephone number.

The thought of calling a random woman to ask her on a date was preposterous; it was insane. I felt embarrassed that I’d even had the idea. All I knew about her was that she loved pasta and had an ongoing health condition.

The idea of making a random phone call was preposterous, but that’s what I did.

‘Hi, is that Celine?’

‘Speaking,’ she replied, friendly but a little wary. ‘Who is this?’

‘It’s Terry; Terry399. I bought your pasta machine.’

‘Oh yes, how are you?’ Her response was as if she knew me or was expecting me to call.

‘I’m fine thanks.’

‘There’s nothing wrong with the machine, is there?’ Her voice carried concern, as if she was honour-bound to accept responsibility for any hiccups in the road to my pasta-making success.

‘No; it’s great. Thanks for sending it so swiftly. I’m calling about something else, actually. This might sound a bit odd, and please feel free to say no, I won’t be offended, but would you like to go out to dinner one evening, maybe for some pasta?’ I threw in the pasta reference to make my proposal seem less tenuous.

There was a pause; she was thinking.

‘No, I can’t,’ she said, a degree of awkwardness in her response. At that moment I felt stupid for even asking.

‘Right; I see. No problem. Sorry to have intruded…’

‘Please, wait. It’s not that I don’t want to. I’d love to, but I don’t like going out in public. I have this … disfigurement … and it makes me feel uncomfortable and anxious. I haven’t been outside in a long time, not for many years. If you’re happy to come to my house, I can cook something, if that’s okay with you.’

‘Yes please,’ I said, trying not to sound too eager. ‘Shall I make some pasta and bring it along?’

She laughed, a harmonious and delicate sound that was both endearing and uplifting.

Later that night I tried to picture Celine in my mind. Her note had attracted me, and her voice had confirmed much of what I thought. She was special. Before I went to sleep, I masturbated, thinking about the image I had created for her.

She had mentioned her ongoing health condition and had referred to a disfigurement. Trying to guess its nature led to my mind being tied up in knots, so I put the thought to one side. I hoped it wouldn’t be anything significant.

A few evenings later I visited Celine. I took a bunch of flowers, an expensive one from a proper florist; Celine deserved more than petrol station blooms. On the way to her house I stopped to buy a box of chocolates and a bottle of wine. I also had a package of pasta I’d made with the machine.

Celine was beautiful and witty; we got on as if we’d known each other for years. We ate dinner, drank wine and laughed. It didn’t matter to me that instead of skin, her entire body – well, the parts I could see – was covered with bacon. If anything it lent to her a smoky aroma that was both endearing and sexually inflammatory.

Celine’s bacon-based disfigurement had left her depressed and paranoid; as a result, she shunned contact with the general public. Her family members and a few dedicated friends delivered food and other necessities. Aside from those interactions, she lived in isolation, with nothing but the television, radio and the internet for company.

I told her she was beautiful and had nothing to fear, but she wasn’t convinced. I explained things had changed in the modern world. People with disfigurements were accepted and treated with respect. No one mocked or stared or spat. The general public were enlightened to disabilities. Despite my reassurances, she was fearful, uncomfortable with the idea of venturing out, but after much encouragement she agreed to go outside if I was with her.

I suggested we visited a quiet pub I knew. Celine wanted to call a taxi, but the journey was so short I proposed we walk. Her eyes showed panic, an unwillingness to continue, so I explained that much of the journey was through a small park, away from the busy roads. She finally relented once I’d promised to get her straight back to the house if anything made her feel uncomfortable.

The first part of the journey was a brief walk on the street before we reached the park. As we strolled no one called her names or gawped or spat. People went about their business, barely paying attention to us. No one took notice of her bacon skin. One lady smiled with genuine warmth as she passed by. Celine relaxed a little.

Entering the park, she sighed. I turned, fearing the worst, but she was smiling. The sunlight illuminated her face, the gentle breeze teasing her hair. Her hand tightened on mine, an affectionate squeeze telling me she was happy.

As we strolled, a dog appeared and followed us, sniffing at Celine’s legs. I tried to shoo it away, but she giggled and told me to leave it be. Another quickly joined it, then another. Soon there were dozens of dogs, scampering between her feet, sniffing and licking her bacon legs. Every time I’d chase them off, they’d return, seemingly with more friends. Celine just laughed and said not to worry. By the time we reached the pub she was dripping with canine saliva from her thighs down to her toes. I apologised about the dogs’ interest in her, but she laughed it off. After a few drinks I called a taxi and took her home.

As I said goodbye, she pulled me to her and kissed me with passion.

‘Thank you so much,’ she said, her voice trembling with emotion. ‘You have freed me and I am forever in your debt.’

Throughout the next week I phoned Celine every day, but she didn’t answer my calls. I left voicemail messages but received no response. I e-mailed her with no reply. In the end I had no other choice but to go to her house. A light was on in a room at the back, the glow obvious through the gloomy hallway. She didn’t come to the door when I knocked, despite me giving the knocker a good hammering. I stood dejected, my head resting on the glass panel of the front door when I heard her laugh, the familiar sound which was both harmonious and delicate. She was in there.

In frustration I climbed over her garden gate and went to the window of the back room. The curtains were open, and inside I could see Celine sitting on the sofa, naked. Around her were a pack of dogs, licking her bacon legs and bacon arms and bacon belly and bacon breasts. Her eyes were closed, and she made a yapping sound as the dogs licked up all that bacony goodness.

I banged on the window and she opened her eyes, a look of confusion on her face until she spotted me. Rising, she gestured towards her back door and left the room. I heard the key turn and the door opened. She was still naked, her bacony body glistening with a coat of saliva.

‘Do you want to come in?’ she asked, as if the situation was normal. I nodded and followed her inside. We went into her sitting room and she slumped down on the sofa. I sat in an armchair and she waved a finger, signalling I shouldn’t be there.

‘Come her,’ she said, tapping her knees. I crossed the room and knelt in front of her. Placing her hands around my neck, she pulled my face down between her knees.

‘Go on,’ she said. ‘You can lick me if you want. It’s okay.’

I gently touched my tongue on her inner thigh. It was salty and smoky, a background hint of sweetness like treacle coming through. The aftertaste was peppery. She was delicious. I took a longer lick, savouring her skin. My tongue worked its way up her thigh, and as I got closer to her sex, the dogs growled, low and menacing, a warning snarl that I was too close to their territory.

I hesitated, but she whispered, ‘Don’t stop; please don’t stop.’

As I licked again at her thighs, something snapped at my face; curled black lips and yellowing canine teeth flashed past, a blast of fetid hot breath filling my nose. Orange eyes, bestial and dangerous, were fixed on me. Again, the dog snapped, and a burning sensation ran from my eye to my chin. I touched my face and looked down; my fingers were covered with blood.

Celine laughed, a disturbing and evil cackle. I reached out my hand to show her the blood and as I did another dog sank its teeth into my arm. I tried to pull free but its jaws were locked, the intensity of its bite increasing as it violently shook its head. I felt another set of teeth bite into my shoulder. Explosions of pain wracked my body as skin was torn by jagged teeth.

I screamed, the piercing sound filling the air. As if it were a signal, the pack of hounds pounced, teeth snapping, heads shaking in a frenzied attack as they mauled me. A mass of teeth and snarling faces and burning eyes descended. I tried to fight them off but there were too many.

Celine was still laughing.

‘Please help me,’ I sobbed.

‘My babies need to eat.’

The teeth were ripping at me, tearing my flesh like millions of tiny hot knives. Something locked onto my throat, shaking and biting as I struggled to suck in air. The attack was relentless, excruciating agonies torturing my body as the dogs intensified their frenzy, and through it all, the air was heavy with the smoky aroma of delicious crispy bacon.

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