It’s his idea, the first time. It’s a shortcut she takes every day on the way to and from the office, but usually she’s in low heels and a suit, always in a rush. It’s never occurred to her before what it might feel like to be made to kiss the bricks, to feel her bare knees graze against them. She’s never dreamt of stopping on a double yellow to fall to her knees and suck cock, never imagined what it might feel like to have water from the hanging baskets and semen mix on her upturned face. He – David – teaches her to want all those things.
Adam. Adam is the only one who uses a word for it she’s never heard before. Adam is not sure he’s up for fucking in a backstreet at all. Adam is not an exhibitionist – he prefers the feathery softness of the duvet, the soft glow of a bedside lamp. She convinces him by waking him early one morning, when the sky is awash with purple, the milk still icy cold on the doorsteps. Adam makes her come so hard that morning, lifted against the wall, legs around his waist (he’s a big guy, in more ways than one), that she swings from the lampposts as they make their way home.
Paul calls it a ginnel, and fucks her in it in broad daylight, his thrusts as harsh as the word sounds in his flat, mancunian accent. They duck into the doorways, listening for the sound of footsteps or voices approaching. It’s different in the sunshine – dirtier, somehow – and they go back there day after day, until this road, this dank, unfrequented backstreet, feels more like home to her than her neat, clean little flat. When Paul calls time on their relationship, she doesn’t cut through to work that way for three whole months.
She’s single now, and the shortcut has regained the bland, regionless name she gave it before them – alleyway. It’s always been part of the appeal of fucking men with regional accents, the fact she doesn’t have one. Three men have fucked her here, and each one had his own name for it. Those words – snicket, jitty, ginnel – they feel as intimate, as personal to her now as pussy or cunt, as unique to each man as the taste of his come, the shape of his cock. She’s single now, but from time to time, in the dead of night, she’s there, alone, kissing the brick. Remembering.