A few years before I remarried, I dated a cute girl off and on for about six months, six contentious months. Named, Kiku, after the Chrysanthemum flower, she had been betrothed to a young doctor who was too busy with his residency to “attend” to her. Whenever he did manage to find the time to take the poor girl out, he would inevitably doze off. Kiku was so starved for affection and sex that a simple kiss would really get her juices flowing. I remember that I would lie on my back, let her crawl up on top of me, and she would go and go and go and go.[1]Every time she spent an afternoon at my place—she was from a “good” family, and almost never spent the night—it was like she was trying to make up for lost time, trying to squeeze out as many orgasms as she could from one session . . .

Is there a purpose to this story, Peadar?

There is. About a year after we broke up for the nth and last time, I caught sight of Kiku in town. Same story: I was waiting for a traffic signal to change when I saw her across the street. She was about seven or eight months pregnant and my first thought was . . . 

Dodged a bullet. 


And what was your first thought upon seeing Akané with a baby?

Confusion. Confusion tinged with sadness.

So, you start asking around about Akané.

This time I must admit that I did. I went straight to Off Broadway and asked Stanley if Akané had been by recently.



“Your girlfriend?”

“My ex-girlfriend,” I correct.

“Oh, yeah,” he says with an exaggerated roll of his eyes. “Get this: she’s screwing that Yomiuri Giants slugger, Martinez.”

I shrug.

“You know, Martinez, that lard-ass from the Dominican Republic. The guy’s gotta be seven times heavier than Akané, twice as tall.”

“Ah, right. Maru-chan.”[2]

“I’m tellin’ ya, those baseball players got a girl in every town and Akané’s the one he fucks whenever he’s in Fukuoka.”

“So, Akané hasn’t had a kid, then?”

“Akané with a kid? Get outta here! If there’s anything incubating in that twat of hers, it’s an STD.”

[1]It should be noted that when Japanese “come”, they “go”.

[2]Due to Martinez’s rotund figure, he was nicknamed “Maru-chan” by his fans. Marumeans “round, circle”.

The first installment/chapter of A Woman's Hand can be found here.

A Woman's Hand and other works are available in e-book form and paperback at Amazon.