“Yeah, that one,” he says as I browse eBay listings for leather motorcycle jackets.

I snort and look over the details of the listing. “It screams ‘butch lesbian’ to me. Are you sure?” The bidding also starts at $84.

“It wouldn’t be while I’m wearing it.”

Seth is a big guy; muscular, probably over six feet tall. I don’t know how much he weighs, but I know he wears black, and I know he wears leather motorcycle jackets, tight jeans, and combat boots. Or at least, that he wants to start wearing them.

We don’t have that dissimilar a taste in clothes, all things considered. Though I’d never wear the motorcycle jacket without him around, we both have a thing for boots, tight jeans, and getting things done. In fact, I count us lucky. There’s a lot we have in common, and a lot he doesn’t mind doing with a female body.

All in all we have a good relationship; it’s a lot better than it used to be. Before, he used to scare me. He’d take over for days at at time, run his mouth, drink his fill, and then when I could be run ragged no more, he’d disappear back into the ether, leaving me to clean up his mess. Then at 19 I went on medication that forced my body into something resembling menopause, and for a long time I didn’t hear from him.

About a month ago, he came knocking on the door again for the first time in 10 years.

I knew that knock. I knew the sound of his boots on the doormat, the timbre of his voice as he hummed something to himself.

I wasn’t scared this time, though. I was ready. I had language, and experience, and a little more wisdom than before. I had confidence and self-esteem. I’d had a hysterectomy and no longer hated my body.

“Well look at you,” he said quietly, genuinely pleased as I opened the door to let him in. There was no not letting him in. “You’ve certainly grown up since the last time we were together.”

“I’ve learned a lot.” He stepped in, and I watched him – his movements, his mannerisms. “And I had my surgery.”

Seth reached out to touch the tiny, dimpled scars on my hips. His fingers knew exactly where they were. “I know. And I think you know how happy that makes me.”

I smiled, and we sat down. We had a lot to catch up on.

That was last month.

He’s still here.

“You haven’t… disappeared like you used to.”

Seth shrugs, standing so close to me. He hasn’t left my side since I let him in. “We were both immature back then. Still kids.” He puts an arm around my shoulder, like a big brother might. “I’m really glad we spent the time apart. It gave us time to find out who we really were.”

My face twists up a little. “I still don’t know who we are, though. I thought I did, but…” I look down at the tattoo on my wrist: an alchemical symbol I once envisioned to be, what? My gender? At least it’s still the symbol for gold. A reminder that there is a kernel of something in me that never changes even if my pronouns might. “I don’t think I ever will,” I decide.

“Seems pretty obvious to me,” the big man shrugs. “But I was always the confident one.”

“I’m confident now, too.”

He flashes his whites and winks. “Good. I think we’ll finally be able to get along.”

And I think so too.

He’s looked over my wardrobe: hummed and hawwed over the vague unisex-ness of the t-shirts; keened over the punk, epaulet-ed “shit jacket”; had to hide his excitement at my still having a pair of men’s low-cut leather boots. “You were going to get rid of these?” he exclaimed. I shrugged. “I’d given up on you ever coming back.”

I put them on and he beamed with pride.

I have to set boundaries with him, though. He can be an irresponsible guest, though he’s matured over the years just as much as I have.

We’ve been having conversations about transition, or at least T. He presses the issue, and though I want to hear him out, I know that it’s a pipe-dream. I’m married to a straight man who I love dearly, and we have a life we want to live together. Seth has always had this way about him that could convince me of anything, but I think I know better. I don’t think he’s wired for that kind of total commitment. The both of us still need… the both of us.

He’s utilitarian, which helps, and he’s a little more vain than the rest of me is. If we can’t be the man he wants me to be inside and out, then he seems to be happy settling for making this the hottest body it can be, even if it still has tits and two holes. Him being gay and me being straight, we can at least both agree that being ogled by hot guys is one of life’s greatest pleasures.

Right now, we’re taking things one day at a time.

I bought some exercise equipment: a pull-up bar and a set of resistance bands so I can get us a good back, chest, and arms. I also forked over for some testosterone-boosting, gym rat herbal supplements because why not. If it helps this ectomorphic frame build muscle a little easier, then I’d say it was worth it.

He wants me to start packing when he’s around, too, and he wants me to save up for a Feeldoe – the Stout model, of course. The unspoken worry I have is that this might be something that actually makes masturbation more appealing to me… as in, not having a cock has always been my main barrier to entry for enjoying dat jerk lyfe. (Let’s just say that my libido has been higher than normal since he’s been around, but I haven’t had any desire to masturbate with the equipment that I’ve got. Even PIV sex with the BF was unsatisfying, despite the raging hormones. The anal, though, felt exceptionally ‘right’.) More uncomfortable questions, in that case. But that’s for later. For when I’ve got $130 to drop on a sex toy prosthetic.

Once again, though, I find myself in unknown territory. I’m thankful we’re on speaking terms, though. His unilateral dominance of yesteryear was difficult to deal with, and often left me scrambling to meet all of my girlself’s real-life obligations. I’m learning that he’s a straightforward guy, though, and that, if I hear him out and meet him in the middle sometimes, he’s pretty happy.

All we need to do is communicate effectively, treat him like the human being that he is, give him room to learn and explore what masculinity means to him, and… everything goes well. Who would have guessed?



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