Marlboro Country, Part 7: Katie

(by, 23 October 2003)

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"Won't your grandparents..."

"Shh.  They never come up to the attic."

Katie keeps quiet as Brian opens the front door.  "Nana, Gramps!  I'm
home." She hears a voice answer him as he opens the door wide and
gestures to the stairs off to the right.  She runs up them as quietly as
she can, as he goes down the hallway.

It's just like he said, at the top of the stairs she takes a left, then
climbs up another flight.  At the top of those stairs, she sees two
rooms, a large one filled with boxes and a ton of other things.  The
other room has a few things in the corners, quite a bit less clutter,
and a desk with a computer on it.

And a mattress, she notes.

She really wants a cigarette, but decides to wait for Brian.

Really, Katie asks herself, how do you get yourself into these things?


As far back as Katie could remember, she was fascinated by people who
smoked.  She would watch them, usually as she hid behind something, and
marvel at them.  She watched the thin white cigarettes in their hands,
smoke drifting up from it in delicate tendrils.  She would be rapt with
attention as they'd lift their hands to their mouths, and breathed it
in.  But, most of all, she loved to watch the different ways people
would breath it out.

Some would purse their lips and breathe out very thin columns, some
would produce huge billowing clouds, some milky gusts from their noses.

There was just something about the people who smoked that fascinated
>From as far back as she could remember, she wanted to smoke herself.
just had to know if it was as good as it looked.

But that was not going to be easy, not by a long shot.

Katie's mother was about as rabid an anti-smoker as there ever was.
Whenever she saw someone smoking, especially if they were in a public
place, she'd lay into them as if they'd just murdered someone in front
of her.  Katie knew, without question, that if her mother ever caught
her smoking, she would be dead before she hit the ground.

Still, part of her thought it would be worth it.


Katie has the pack of Marlboro Lights 100s out of her jacket pocket
already.  She opens the pack and eyes the full complement of cigarettes
before her.  Brian said his grandparents never come up here, surely it
woudn't be a big deal if she just had one.  Maybe if she opened the

She jumps as she hears a creak of wood..someone's coming up the stairs.
She moves behind the door, just in case.


Brian.  She steps out and smiles.  "All set?"

"Yeah.  I told them I had homework to do, and that I'd be up here a
while.  Everything's fine."

She takes out a cigarette hungrily puts it in her mouth.  She smiles as
she watches Brian watch her...he has a look in his eyes she knows very
well.  It's one she enjoys seeing.

Brian flicks the lighter as she leans in...


"You can get cigarettes?" Katie asked, her voice a whisper.

"Yeah," Lynne said, leaning in close.  "My brother started last summer.
My parents made a big deal about it at first, but then they found out my
sister started when she went away to college, so they gave up and both
of them have permission to smoke now."

"Really?"  Katie forced herself to swallow, her mouth was dry.  "Have
you ever tried it?"

"Yeah.  He's not supposed to, but he lets me have one sometimes."

"Do you have some, like, on you now?"

"No, but I can get some.  You wanna try one?"

"Um, yeah."

"I'll bring some in tomorrow."

That night, Katie could hardly sleep.  In her bed at night, hidden in
the dark, she held a pen between two fingers, dragging on it as if it
were a cigarette.  She tried to imagine what the smoke would taste like,
what it would feel like going down her throat.  She tried to imagine if
her mother would be able to tell she'd been smoking, just by looking at

She was shaking all the next day at school.  She saw Lynne in the
hallway early on and shot her a questioning look, and Lynne smiled and
nodded.  Katie barely paid attention to any of her classes that day.

After school, she and Lynne walked a few blocks to a wooded park and
slipped in to an unobserved area.  Then Lynne brought out The Pack.

It was a white pack of Marlboro Light 100s, with about four left.  Katie
took one and held it in between two fingers, just like she'd seen people
do.  She couldn't keep her eyes off of it.  As Lynne took the matches
and tried to light one, Katie slowly lifted her hand and put the
cigarette in her mouth.  She just stared at the thin tube in her mouth,
a faint gold line marking the filter.  She stared almost without
comprehending as Lynne held the lit match out to her.

The entire world seemed to go into slow motion as Katie leaned in, and
put her cigarette into the flame.  She slowly sucked in, as she'd seen
people do, and began to taste the smoke in her mouth.

It was sweet, almost; not what she'd expected.  She dragged it in as
much as she could, and then took it out of her mouth.  It seemed as if
the smoke were filling her entire body, she tingled as far down as her

Slowly, deliberately, she opened her mouth, and saw a faint wisp of
smoke come out.  Slowly, she blew out...and watched as, for the first
time, she breathed out smoke.  She even felt a little thrill as she
watched a small wisp come out of her nose.

Lynne was smiling.  "Like it?"

Katie's smile was broad and wide.  She put the cigarette back in her
mouth, and drew on it deliberately, watching the tip glow brighter as
she drew the smoke in.  She held her mouth closed for a second or two,
felt the tingle again, and then opened it quickly. A little pocket of
smoke appeared and then quickly disappeared.  She controlled the smoke
inside her mouth for a second or two, then blew it out, her lips pursed
tightly.  She blew a thin column into the air.  It was everything she
imagined it would be.

She was 12 years old, and she knew she was going to be a smoker.


Katie slowly brings the flame of her lighter up to her cigarette as
Brian clicks away with his digital camera.  She draws the smoke deep
down to her toes, concentrating on blowing out the smoke slowly,
directing it in a thin line into the air.  Brian had taken the lampshade
off a lamp behind her, and the backlighting really makes the smoke stand
out when he takes her picture.  She'd already gone through practically
half the pack.

She looks right at Brian's camera as she puts the cigarette again in her
lips, painted with bright red lipstick and draws the smoke in, the end
of her cigarette glowing.  Then she opens her mouth very quickly, making
a perfect snap inhale.  She allows just a little smoke to waft out her
thin nose, and then purses her lips to blow a long, thin column toward
the ceiling.

She lets Brian take a few shots of the freshly lit cigarette between her
slender fingers, fresh red nailpolish on the nails.  She slowly moves it
to her lips, and lets it dangle there for a minute, until she draws the
smoke in again...this time letting a thick cloud of smoke drift out of
her mouth and into her nose.  She then blows a couple of perfect smoke
rings, and finally a thin arrow of smoke in the middle, dissapating the
smoke.  Brian smiles as he reviews the digital pictures.

She can hardly wait to see them herself.


Katie originally thought that the hardest part of smoking would be
actually getting the cigarettes.  It would be a few years before she
could legally walk into any store and buy them, of course.  But, that
proved to be less of a problem than she thought, since Lynne was able to
get cigarettes from her brother, about a pack or two a month.  Since she
and Lynne could only sneak a couple each day, it worked out well enough.
The hard part actually proved to be the elaborate schemes she had to
come up with to hide her smoking from her mother.

The first step she took was to volunteer to do the laundry herself, so
she could get the smell of smoke out of her clothes before her mother
noticed.  She started popping lifesavers incessently, and had even taken
to bringing a change of clothes into school, so she wouldn't have to
come home with the smell of smoke on her.  Lynne offered to keep the
pack herself, her parents would probably have slightly less of a
reaction if she were caught, but Katie actually liked having a pack on
her, as risky as that might be.

She liked looking at the pack sometimes, even if she dared not take one
out and smoke it.  Sometimes, in the dark of her room late at night,
she'd take one out and pretend to smoke it, as she used to do with a
pen.  She could detect a faint taste of tobacco when she did.  A time or
two she wondered how risky it would be to open a window and smoke
anyway, but that would have been too much.

When her mother started working the night shift at times, Katie was
severely tempted to sneak out to the deck and have a cigarette, but the
last thing she needed was for her goody-goody sister to wake up and
catch her in the act!  Terri had gotten so stuck-up since she started
high school...

Then came the day Katie got the shock of her life.  Her mother came home
furious, with Terri in tow.  "Do you want to know what I just caught
your sister doing?" her mother asked.  "Right out in broad daylight, for
all to see.  Your sister was smoking a cigarette!"

Her mother was so mad at Terri, she never saw the smile break out on
Katie's face.


Katie is very pleased with the finished pictures, as she and Brian go
over them on the computer.  They look as sexy as she felt while doing
them, and Brian's pride both in his photography as well as in his
subject fills Katie with a different kind of tingle.

"I'll go down and get some food," Brian says at last, "you can change
and wash up in the bathroom downstairs."

As he heads down to the first floor, Katie feels a bit light headed as
she takes off her clothes.  She had smoked almost an entire pack of
cigarettes tonight!  She was going to take the change of clothes she'd
brought with her and sneak into the second-floor bathroom so she could
wash up and get the smell of smoke off of her.  She starts to think she
might have to wash her hair too, when she looks at the mirror Brian had
used for a few artsy shots.

She looks at the reflection of her slender, naked body.  It's been a
year or two since she started high school, and her body is really
filling out nicely.  She had been thin as a rail when she was younger,
but now she is definitely getting some nice curves. And her breasts are
really filling out now, boys are really beginning to notice her.  Brian
especially, she thinks, blushing at the thought.

She reaches once again for her pack of Marlboro Light 100s.  She lights
the cigarette and watches her body as she smokes.  Holding the lit
cigarette with her hands down, and watches the thin tendril of smoke
drift up her arms.  She lifts the cigarette to her lips and draws in
some smoke, watching as her body feels that oh so familiar tingle.

In her reflection, she sees Brian enter the room.  His eyes are held by
the image of her nakedness, cigarette in hand.  He looks up, and meets
her eyes.

And puts the food down.


Soon after Terri started smoking openly, Katie found herself easily
smoking close to a pack or two a week all by herself.  It was a lot
easier to hide the tell-tale signes of smoking when her sister already
smokes, just walking next to her on the way home from school provided a
good reason for a whiff of tobacco on her clothes.

Going out to the school's smoking area before and after school, and
during lunch, because a regular ritual.  She became friendly with many
of Terri's friends who also smoked.

The best part was that she no longer had to hide when she smoked, as she
and Lynne had.  Well, except from her mother, of course.  After a while,
the smoking area at school became her main place to socialize.  She had
her friends there, including Lynne...although, Katie realized that since
Lynne was no longer her main source of cigarettes, the bond was a little
less than it had been. They really didn't have much in common beyond

Most days, Katie wolfed down her lunch as quickly as possible, so she
could spend more time outside smoking.  One day, when the cafe was very
crowded, she found a spot next to a couple of her non-smoking friends.
As she quickly ate her sandwich, she noticed a boy watching her.  He
wasn't staring like some lunatic, but it was clear he was looking at
her.  What surprised her was that when she caught him and looked right
at him, he didn't look away.  She noticed a lot of boys staring at her
as she smoked, but all of them would look away when she caught their
eyes, as if embarrassed to be caught.  This one was not embarrassed.

"Take a picture," she said with just a hint of affected distain, "It
lasts longer."

"I just might."

She found herself liking his smile, almost despite herself.  She stuffed
the last of her sandwich in her mouth and stood up.  "Leaving so soon?"
he asked.

"Just going out for a smoke.  If you want to watch me some more, you'll
have to come along."

"Don't mind if I do," he said, and got up with her.

Outside, she put a cigarette in her mouth and took out her lighter.  He
took it from her and extended a flame for her.  She lit her cigarette
and breathed in, holding the smoke in as she regarded him.

Not bad looking at all, she thought.  Taller than her, but not by all
that much, with dark blond hair longish in front, but short in the back.
He had an easy-going face, and a very nice smile.  She blew smoke into
the air.

"Do you want one?" she asked, extending the pack.

"No thanks."

"You sure?  You're gonna stink of smoke anyway, may as well get
something out of it."

"Don't worry, I'm fine."

"Suit yourself," she said, taking another drag on her cigarette.

"I've noticed you around," he said, "you sure spend a lot of time out

She shrugged.  "You have a problem with that?"  The last thing she
needed was another anti-smoking nazi, like her mother.

"Not at all, quite the contrary.  I love watching women smoke, there's
just something very sexy about it."

"Ah, a smoking groupie, are you?"

He smiled that killer smile again.  "Kind of. But some women are just
better at it than others.  You, for example, really seem to enjoy
smoking.  I can see it in your face, and with your body language."

She felt herself blush.  To cover it up, she looked away to blow a thin
column of smoke into the air.

"My name's Brian," he said.  "Want to go out sometime?"


Brian approaches her deliberately.  He takes her face in his hands and
kisses her, hard and firm.  She is surprised, but also excited.  Katie
had never kissed a boy, certainly not like this.  She isn't afraid,
though.  She feels Brian slowly move her toward the mattress, and allows

Brian is kissing her neck, sending shivers up her spine.  She noticed
the cigarette still in her hand, and moves it toward the ashtray on the
floor, already filled with butts, white with a faint trace of her
lipstick.  Brian looks up and takes the cigarette from her and puts it
in his own mouth.

In all the time they had spent together, Katie had never seen Brian
smoke himself, he always just enjoyed watching her smoke.  Katie watches
now as Brian draws on the cigarette deeply, as deeply as she herself so
often does.  He takes it out of his mouth and keeps it closed as he
reaches over to stub it out.  He leans in toward her, and opens his
mouth to kiss her.

She tastes the smoke along with the taste of his kiss.  His tongue
gently caresses her lips as she parts them, allowing his tongue in.  She
can see faint wisps of smoke coming from the corners of their mouths.
Brian slowly pulls away and Katie watches as their breath is punctuated
with smoke.

His clothes feel harsh against her skin.  She reaches up and pulls off
his shirt, feeling the electric thrill of his bare chest against her
own.  He uses his free hand to take off his pants, and before Katie
realizes it, she and Brian lie intertwined, naked on the mattress.

Katie's body is electric, she feels a strong tingle with every gentle
caress Brian gives her.  She arches her back as Brian gently kisses her
all down her chest.  She feels her nipples harden as Brian gently
carresses her breasts.  She moves his head gently toward them and Brian
takes the hint and sucks on ner nipples.  Katie feels as if she's going
to explode.

Katie feels Brian become harder as his body caresses hers.  She feels
herself becoming moist.  Suddenly, Brian pulls away.  She almost cries
out until she sees him open a small, square foil package and put the
condom on.  Part of her thanks him, as she wasn't even thinking of that,
but she can't find the words at the moment.

Slowly and deliberately, Brian once again holds her body close and moves
in line with her.  An electric tingle creates a flash up and down her
body as she feels him penetrate her...and a slight pain as he breaks
through.  It's a pain she barely notices, though, as he wriggles in

Her body is awash with electricity.  She and Brian move as one as she
feels him inside of her.  She clenches to increase the feeling, and
hears Brian emit a faint moan of pleasure.

He takes her hands in his as he leans slightly upward.  Katie moves her
body in concert with his until she feels him throb beneath her.  Her
body quickly responds, and she feels a wash come over her, a tingle of
electricity, the most powerful yet.  Katie feels as if it will go on

As soon as it does end, she and Brian stare at each other, both faces
filled with wide grins.  He leans down and kisses her once more, this
time gentle and sweet, a lover's kiss.  "I love you," he says, his voice
a ragged whisper.

They pull apart.  Brian checks the condom to make sure all is well as
Katie reaches over and takes out a cigarette.  She'd always heard that
people craved a cigarette after sex, now she understands why.  She takes
her time lighting it, allowing the smoke to permeate her body deeply and
seem to come out of every pore.

She turns on her side slightly to face Brian, gently caressing his
chest.  Cigarette between her slender fingers, she gently traces his
thin wisp of chest hair, finding she likes it.  A little hair, but not
too much, she finds it very sexy.  She smiles as she draws on her
cigarette again, allowing the smoke to trail out slowly.  She can barely
exert enough energy to blow it out.

She takes the cigarette and moves it toward Brian's mouth.  He opens it
and draws on the cigarette himself.  She watches the tip glow, bathing
his face in a faint red light.  He blows upward as she watches his full
lips shape the smoke.

She takes a deep drag herself, and looks away to blow it as she asks
"Did you mean that?"  She fears looking at his face, not sure what
she'll see there.

But he knows what she means.  "Yes, I did.  I do.  I love you, Katie, my
little chain smoker."

She smiles and looks at him, giving him the cigarette.  She leans her
head on his chest and watches the cigarette in his strong hands, the
same hands that had caused electric sparks all up and down her body, a
gentle line of smoke travelling upward.

"I love you too," she whispers.

It's dark when she finally does leave Brian's house.  His grandparents
are watching TV with the sound turned up loud as Brian sneaks her out
the back door.  He kisses her at the door, lingering on the kiss.  She
doesn't want to leave either, but it's going to be hard enough to
explain her lateness to her mother.

As she feels the cool night air on her body, she longs for just one more
cigarette.  She knows better, though, and continues on home.  She wraps
her arms around herself, keeping the feelings she and Brian shared deep
inside herself.

She knows now what it was that had always drawn her to cigarettes.  She
remembers watching women smoke, and thinking that smoking would make her
feel like an adult, make her feel like a woman.  She remembers that very
first cigarette, with Lynne in the woods behind school, and thinks about
how much like an adult she felt with that very first cigarette in her
hand.  It was the first time she felt like a woman, instead of a little

Now she was a woman.  Time to act like it, she thought.  Time to take
control, to live as she wants to, withouth hiding who she was from her

She decided to risk her mother's anger.  She would declare herself a
woman tonight, and tell her mother that she smokes.  It's part of who I
am, she told herself, part of who I want to be.  She briefly ponders
telling her mother everything, but figures best to hold part of it back.
She doesn't want her mother to have a full fledged heart attack!

She stops to take out the pack of cigarettes hidden in her sock.  She
holds it in her hand as she enters her building.  She walks up the
stairs to her apartment door.  Standing before it, she decides to be as
up front about it as possible.  She takes out a cigarette and lights it,
defiantly.  She opens the door, lit cigarette in hand, ready to face
whatever reaction her mother has.

Story continues in Marlboro Country, Part 8:  Carrie

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