The Book of Zara is Book Six in the Heretics in Occupied Eden series and follows the extraordinary life of Cloud and Terp Morgan’s eldest child. Zara has a genius IQ, is able to talk to animals, and can float out of her body. Due to a quirk in her DNA, she may very well be the mother of an emerging species likely to replace the degenerating Homo sapiens. In this exclusive excerpt, we witness Zara’s coming out to her parents as bisexual.
When I was twenty, in my junior year in college, I asked for time alone with my parents to tell them something important about me. My motivation for this was that I was neck deep in trying to manage a ménage a troi, and was feeling so much stress that I thought it would show in my general comportment. Also, I wanted it out in order to reduce the emotional burden I was carrying.
They sat on a couch and I sat facing them in a rocking chair. I was not nervous about coming out to them, but there must have been a sense of melodrama surrounding the scene, because they looked tense and serious and remained silent until I spoke.
I said, “Relax, Mom and Dad. I simply want to let you know that I am bisexual. I think you have a right to know this about your elder daughter.”
The atmosphere lightened immediately.
Mom said with a twinkle in her voice, “I am so relieved. I thought you were going to say you’ve become a Republican.”
We all laughed heartily at that. Then I said, “Would you still love me if I were a Republican?”
Dad said, “Certainly, but we know you so intimately that the news of such a conversion would lead us to question your sanity. We’d want a second opinion.”
Mom said, “Yes dear, we would continue to love you the entire time that you were locked up in a psychiatric ward.”
I said, “I knew you wouldn’t have any issue with my being homosexual, but I wondered if the bi part would cause you even a tweak of concern.”
Then Mom said, “Zara dear, we’ve known about or at least strongly suspected your sexual orientation for a long time. Years, actually. But it’s good that it’s now in the open so we can converse appropriately about it if the subject arises.”
“How did you know? What specifically tipped you off?” I asked.
“Your eyes,” Dad said. “We saw your eyes dilate in response to faces you found appealing, and I noticed years ago that your eyes reacted equally to images of attractive males and females.”
“That phenomenon occurs in artists, regardless of their sexual orientation,” I said.
“True,” said Dad. “But we also noticed your behavior in settings where sexual tension was evident, and your face and gestures revealed positive attractions to both males and females.”
Then I said, “Only faces? What about attraction to bodies?”
“Yes,” said Mom. “Bodies too. But faces are more compelling. It was Helen of Troy’s face that launched a thousand ships, not her breasts or legs.”
Dad added, “No matter how beautiful, physically fit, well-proportioned, or appealing a person’s body may be, you won’t develop a healthy intimacy unless you find that person’s face appealing in some way. Faces don’t need to be classically beautiful to be attractive. They can be quite plain, but in most cases some feature or another, lips, eyes, cheeks, smile, will attract interest.”
Mom said, “Focusing on facial features is not superficial, as some would argue, nor is it sexist, unless done to the exclusion of personality and intellect. A face reveals much about a person’s life history and health and even more about one’s soul. You have a particularly compelling physiognomy, Zara, and I’ve seen many people gaze at you.”
I blushed in acknowledgment of her last remark and then said, “Yes, and I gravitate to interesting faces. As Dad noted, I’ve done my share of gazing. Some faces that society judges ugly I find fascinatingly beautiful. But none of this discloses my bisexuality.”
“It manifests the artist in you,” said Mom. “Nevertheless, your bisexuality does not surprise us.”
More About The Book of Zara:
“You well may be the Eve of a new hominid species,” Chief Librarian Key told Zara. She was on the cusp of receiving a PhD from Stanford when her mentor brought news that because of mutations in her DNA, it was critically important she bear children. This revelation from the Chief Librarian not only reinforced an already deep sense of isolation but brought unwelcome complications, the first of which was finding a suitable partner.
Zara considered herself a woman apart, a bisexual naturist with a genius IQ and the ability to converse with a wide range of mammals. In The Book of Zara, explore her significantly long life as it unfolds in extraordinary, boundary-shattering ways.
Read other exclusive excerpts from Heretics in Occupied Eden:
Book One – The Floating Boy – Discovering Metaphysics
Book Two – The Strange Angels – Establishing Gender Studies
Book Three – The Dancing Church – Discovering a Connection
Book Four – The Mansion of Our Undressing – Literature and Protest
Book Five – Chaucer Dickinson and the Timberscape of Memory – The Beatles on Ed Sullivan
Book Seven – Emma Round & the Holy Rowlings – Harry Potter Trivia Night