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Jasmine's Secrets
By Jay Tee

(Illustrated by the Author)

1. What Jasmine Really Needed

"I know we're flagrantly and ridiculously off schedule, Pete, but can we just try to include them in this issue, please?" Jasmine Stuart said. "It means a lot to me. Would you be my angel as usual? Please... I know this isn't right, but I assume responsibility."

Peter was the production department coordinator. He huffed soundlessly. Jasmine was right: he was going to be an angel once again. His eyes did his little usual tour across the long toned legs of the girl in the precise moment she was sticking her cellular a tiny little black piece of plastic - into her delicate ear. She sat at her booth, half of her perfect body outside the chair, as if she really hadn't the time to seat herself properly. "She's a sales warrior," Peter thought.

Jasmine worked for a prestigious top fashion magazine as a sales executive, with a client's list broad enough to leave open-mouthed any decent human being alive. Admiration and hatred ran throughout the company regarding the girl. Even some of her so-called friends had spread nasty rumors about her conquest techniques, but none of these innuendoes were correct. Jasmine Stuart made her way up using her sympathy and skills. Those attributes, combined with her model appearance, guaranteed her success.

But life is pragmatic in all its aspects and in this particular case was responsible for the only divergence in Jasmine's almost perfect life. She was trapped by the social duties of presenting herself as the queen of charm, when in fact she dreamed about an opposite and incompatible life. She was a weirdo by her own judgment, an ugly grease spot over a white dress to her very eyes.

Jasmine was, unable to find a better terminology to describe herself, a fat obsessive. She found herself particularly cracked for fat guys - well, not exactly crazy for their strong bear-likeness semblance but for the fatness itself. She was dizzily uncomfortable about her reaction toward fat women, too, letting her mind fancy possessing one of those bloated, waving, fleshy bodies herself. A weirdo, all right? That was what she thought of herself.

From time to time, her heart quivered in the late hours of night with an open chocolate box in her lap. She never ate all the contents. Before the fourth piece she always burst in tears. She didn't want to lose her slim figure, almost vital for her job, surrounded as she was by tons of superficiality and prejudice. And this inner conflict created in Jasmine a bitter sentiment of failure and despair, growing like a giant spider day by day in her heart - and day after day being swept under the carpet of her subconscious. The hump in the carpet was thick, and she knew this.

She used to think about consulting a professional, but she'd foreseen the answer before the question. A shrink would have told her the usual: "Stop this nonsense. Face it. You're not right." But she didn't want to stop being herself - or stop secretly adoring fatness. And both things were branches of the same tree.

She was living by herself, seeing this thin guy here in public or that fat guy in the "outlying-battlegrounds," as she used to call the veiled circuits she sunk in during the night. Keeping a double life. Her parents and folks were proud of her success. She was 26-years-old, in good health, a striking good-looking prospect. But above all that she felt like the strangest person in the world ever.

Lonely prairies in the darkness of her apartment when all lights have gone. A change of life, change of mind, change of everything: that was her silent prayer. Turbulent dreams in the night, dreams about excess, abundance and lack of control. Wet dreams, bathroom wet stops in the middle of the night, pleasure and guilt, more crying. Then came empty morning, always to remind her that it was time to put the mask on, sew her smile to her face and start all over again for the next seven or eight hours. Distractions from the real wish, bandages to keep the eyes out of the light.

Then I came along. I'm not one of those guys who endlessly enjoy talking about much about themselves, so I'll cut to the chase. I'm just an elusive entity gifted with boundless powers - from the human point of view. And that's it. My reason for being? Well, I'd like to include that within the personal facts I'm not comfortable talking about. Like I say, "that's it," means that's all you get.

Yes, you're right, certainly...what about the girl? I stumbled onto Jasmine quite recently from my point of view...I'm an old being, too. I'd been following her lifeline since she was 19, a promising girl full of youth and health. Oh, I'm sorry, call me Pip, if you like (but I'd prefer you not call me at all.) Returning to the topic of lifelines, I decided it was about time to give Jasmine what she really needed.

Chapter Two