The Delilah Complex

Synopsis | Excerpt | Praise

Delilah, n. The name of the woman who betrayed Samson to the Philistines, used allusively to mean a temptress or treacherous paramour.

"And she made him sleep on her knees; and she called for a man,/and she caused him to shave off the seven locks of his head:/...and his strength went from him." (Judges 16:19)

complex, n. Psychol. A group of emotionally charged ideas or mental factors, unconsciously associated by the individual with a particular subject, arising from repressed instincts, fears, or desires and often resulting in mental abnormality; freq. with defining word prefixed, as inferiority complex, dipus complex, etc.; hence colloq., in vague use, a fixed mental tendency or obsession. Also attrib. and Comb.
The use of the term was established by C. G. Jung in 1907 (Ueber die Psychologie der Dementia Praecox), but it originated with Neisser in 1906 (Individualität und Psychose).

'Tis not in the high stars alone,
Nor in the cups of budding flowers,
Nor in the 'redbreast's mellow tone,
Nor in the bow that smiles in showers,
But in the mud and scum of things
There always, always something sings.


Warm, engulfing, darkness surrounded him. Flesh moved over him. Naked legs held him, vise-like, rocking him, rocking him, lulling him back into haze. Shoulders, neck, torso, blocking all light. Hot breath on his neck. Soft hair in his face, soaking up his tears.

He was crying?

One wrenching and embarrassing sob escaped in answer.

No. Take me back to the threshold of coming.

Let me loose in you.


The pleasure was too much pain. He wasn't taking, he was being taken. Sensations were being suctioned out of him. No control over the pulsing now.

He didn't know what time it was or how long he had been sleeping. Or even if he still was sleeping. He only knew that he had never been used like this and never cried like this before. Never cried before at all. Now he was reduced to weeping because--

He didn't know.

Why was he crying?

He could taste someone else on his lips. Smell someone else in his nostrils. A sour smell. A sweat smell. Not sweet. Everything stunk of stale sex. He wanted more.

Please, come back.

Nothing for a few more minutes. Or another hour? Ribbons of sleep. Weaving in and out of unconsciousness. Fighting through the interwoven dream web. Or had he awoken at all?

Must be in bed. His bed? He didn't know. Focusing, he forced his fingers to feel for smooth sheets but only felt skin. His own. Moist and frigid.He tried to move his hands away from his chest, to his sides, but he couldn't.

What was happening?

Remember something, he told himself. Try to catch something from last night. No memory.

So he had to be sleeping. All he had to do was wake himself up. Open his eyes. From there he'd sit up, stretch, feel the damn sheets, put his feet down on the carpeted floor and get to a shower where he would wash away this fog.

But he couldn't be home.

The body had not been his wife's.

Was it any lover he'd ever known?

He fought, ignoring the tears, to open his eyes. To push one more time through the last vestiges of the milky blue fog. Part of his brain, the small section that was functional and was informing the emotion that led to the weeping, knew that something was desperately wrong. This was just not about fucking. Hot streams of tears were sliding down his cheeks and dripping off the sides of his face. His rib cage hurt from the crying.

He gulped air, hoping that would help clear his head, and became aware that the air was icy.

Weak, helpless, spent, he lay there.

Why was he crying?



The hands stroked his hair. Cupped his skull. He felt himself stiffen again. Tears and erections. What was wrong with him? Fingers played with his curls. Where each hair follicle met his scalp, his blood singed, sending shivers of pleasure down his neck, his spine, to his solar plexus.

Please. Take me back inside of you.

He moved to reach up and brush the wetness off his face but his hand wouldn't lift. A metal bracelet dug its edge, hard and icy, into the flesh of his wrist.

Silver cuffs flashed in the darkened room.

When had he been chained?

He tried to lift his head and shoulders and felt another pressure holding him in place. A band across his chest prevented him from rising. Falling back, his head hit the thin pillow. Not the overstuffed down pillows on his own bed, but a poor excuse that offered only a few inches of padding between his head and the inflexible cot.

Was this more of the dream? It didn't matter, as long as the fingers kept playing so exquisitely with his hair. He tried to move his legs so that he could thrust up but the same pressure that striped across his chest also held his ankles. The same sound of metal against metal rang in his ears.

On his back, naked, shivering, he gave up wanting to understand.

The fingers were torture now. The rhythm of the stroking was making him harder. He opened his mouth, wanting to lick the skin he could smell.

His tongue wouldn't move. He tried to speak but his mouth was filled with a dry thickness that absorbed the sound. How could his tongue be swollen so big?

He worked at it for a few seconds, then tasted the cloth gag.

Suddenly the fingers stopped.

He saw a glimmer of silver. Bright in the room's darkness. Heard the murmur that razor-sharp metal makes as it cuts, exacting and fast.

The only thing he was capable of bringing forth from his body was more tears.

Weak. Like a woman, he cried.

Because he, Philip Maur, who was fearless, was scared.

Scared to death.

© M.J. Rose, 2006, Cannot be reprinted without Permission