YVAN IN THE DARKROOM: L’Étoile Cinema, Marseille

YVAN IN THE DARKROOM: L’Étoile Cinema, Marseille

from Recon News

11 September 2020

Yvan, also known as member QueerYvan, is a historian of sexuality. In an ongoing series, he shares some of his favourite fetish encounters (in a whole lot of detail), as well as occasionally fill us in on the history of kink.

I am a regular at the sex cinema in Marseille. I am fascinated by this place - a former dance hall in the 1960s, since 1975 it has been a porn cinema, the year that changes in pornographic laws regulated the industry and saw 900 porn cinemas open in France. Now there are only two left, this one, and The Vox in Grenoble - and other countries have seen the same decline. Sex has seeped into the floors for 60 years in one form or another, but now it feels like it could close at any time, as the city tries to gentrify, waiting for this inner-city location to become another prey for developers. Who knows what will happen to the place after covid passes?

Pornographic film used to be a socially interactive art form - not people hidden away in their bedrooms watching fervently on their own screens, waiting for sex to come to them from an app, scrolling through Twitter trying to chat to their favourite porn stars, but social spaces that needed to be negotiated in order to find pleasure. At L'Étoile there is no choice as to what to see, but there are people to meet who come to the same spaces to find sexual satisfaction of one sort or another. Stepping into L'Étoile is like visiting the history of sex. The films are always old, 1990s strips of pubic hair (or none at all); smooth twinks - now doubtlessly middle-aged - fucking on screen in the gay room downstairs; two large screens upstairs with various representations of heterosex, almost always with the focus on the woman being fucked by anonymous dicks, gangbangs and MMF, foot fetishes, mild BDSM dynamics, etc. No scripts, just moaning. I don't think anyone comes here for the movies, now that you can see more on your phone, but they are interesting enough to analyse until someone better comes along. I revel in the perversity of fucking another man while this kind of porn is on the screen. I am funny like that.

It is mostly cis men who come here, and several trans women, perhaps a part of the trans sex worker scene for which Marseille is justly renown? There are always some people hustling, some voyeurs watching other men wank. Gay guys looking to suck some cock, and straight ones who will focus on the screen while an anonymous mouth expertly engulfs them in ways that their wives probably won't. Straightish, I guess. There are darkrooms strewn with semen-soaked tissues, and squat toilets in which the light flicks out too soon. It couldn't be more seedy, really, which is a large part of the appeal to me. You can sit in the middle of the cinema, ignoring everyone, wanking, knowing that it is acceptable, and that at least some of the people gathered around you came here to see you do this rather than the screen. You can even smoke in the hallways. The air smells like spunk and hash and stale cigarettes. These are the scents of the history of sex.

* * *

Today, I am sitting in the middle of the largest hall. I have my jeans open, and my cock out, slowly making myself hard, keeping half an eye on the people walking around the room, circling like predators. I don't engage - I am waiting to see who wants to come close. Some people circle me, walking down the aisle in front of me, watching, then creeping down the row behind me. I feel like the bait before the fish strikes. One man takes the initiative, and sits beside me. I don't look at him. I want to make him work for it. He reaches out to touch me, but I gently move his hand away, and instead keep touching myself. He does the same, pulling his jeans down, and I watch him start to get himself hard. He has a nice dick. Thick. All the while, I am not acknowledging him, just wanking my viagra-hard cock, while he tries to catch my attention.

He changes position, bending over the seat behind him, offering me his arse. I don't move. He tells me I can fuck him, and I don't respond. People are gathering around, watching, but I rather enjoy the slight humiliation my inaction creates. I like the awkwardness. I am playing with him, giving him just enough attention to stop him giving up, giving him the sense that he will get what he wants eventually. When he sits back down, I smile, and reach over and start fondling his cock and big, heavy balls. He feels warm in my hand, and gets harder. I pull his foreskin up and down over the head of his cock until it starts to glisten with precum and I can smell him more than the man smoking two rows behind us. I nod towards my cock, letting him know that I want to be sucked, and then lie back as he starts to blow me. His mouth is soft, his throat deep. I hold the back of his head, and start pushing harder into him. I want him to work for any pleasure that he will receive, but he's good at it, and doesn't flinch when I treat him like this. Fuck knows what he thinks of me. He came here for cock, and I am giving it to him. It is that basic.

When I am throbbing hard, I stand up, holding his face in my hands and start fucking his mouth, pushing him a bit more until I can feel his drool running down my shaft. I can see several people watching me, particularly a timid, tall man in his thirties sitting a few seats away. He looks away when I look at him, but I know he wishes it was him in this man's place, making the same gurgling sounds as I pull my cock all the way out and push back down his saliva-filled gullet. I am enjoying the spectacle of it all, and the film casts a beautiful light on my back.

I tell the man to bend back over the seat while I pull on a condom: "donne-moi ton cul," . He's earned his pleasure now, and I am a generous top. I cover it in silicone lube, and rub my sticky fingers over his hole. He has a typical arse of a middle-aged bottom, easily opened by fingers, soft inside, with his anus thick and gaping like a carp's mouth. I find it hot to imagine how many cocks have forced their way into his accommodating hole. The sounds he makes when I finger him - the soft moans when I rub his prostate; the sloppy wet sounds of his hole splatting against my finger when I bang them in and out - all add to the ambience. I put two fingers of each hand in him and stretch him wide, pushing my cock in all the way before I pull them out, holding his waist, and start to thrust into him. I am deep. I withdraw most of the way, and slide right back in there, over and over, listening to him get more aroused as he gets used to my cock. It doesn't feel like I am the first person to fuck him since he has been here. The younger man near us is watching, still. He seems to have his hand down his jeans, but I can't be sure. I am getting off as much on him seeing us as the fuck itself, right in the middle of the cinema, pounding him hard and deep, enjoying his well-used arse exactly how I want, feeling his orgasms and fucking right through them.

When I come, I pull out, and let him take off my condom while I catch my breath. I am not sure, but I think he kept it. He cleans me up with his mouth, and says "merci" before I leave. I smile but say nothing. I go to clean up and have a smoke.

* * *

I am back in the gay cinema, downstairs. The blue curls of smoke smell like Marseille, like the Maghreb. The porn is not interesting. There is an old man watching it, and he seems a bit perturbed that I showed up, as I think he was wanking himself before I arrived. He is old and respectable-looking, not like my queer look, like I had washed up from Berghain, and landed in this pornotopia. I get my dick out again, and put on a cock ring, figuring that someone would come along and suck it soon enough. With my eyes closed, I listen to the sounds of twinks fucking on screen, getting myself hard, the veins in my cock thickening, ready…

It does not take long. The man who had been watching me upstairs is sitting in the dark near me. I let him watch me, waiting for him to get up the courage to be fucked. I knew he wanted it upstairs, so I keep watching him until he discards his jacket and comes forward. "Sur tes genoux," I say, and run my hand through his hair once he is on his knees. It smells like cock and lube, but isn't this what he was here for? He takes his time, touching my cock and balls like they were sacred, not wanting to forget a detail. I am very aroused, seeing him get what he had been imagining. He takes me in his mouth, both of us knowing how I like to be sucked because he had been staring at me before. He is not as experienced as the other man, and what he lacks in proficiency is compensated by wonder. He struggles with getting me all the way down his throat, but I am merciful and let him take breaks, let him work himself up to a decent blow job. Soon he is drooling and gagging and spluttering like anyone else would be, and I am enjoying messing him up, his eyes watering as he looks up at my immobile face.

I stand him up, undo his belt and pull his jeans down around his knees. He is skinny, pale, lanky - totally unimpressive. He bends forward to open his arse more. I push his head down to lean on the chair on which I was sitting, and take his hands and put them on his cheeks, pulling them apart as I say "Ouvrir". His head is on its side, so I can see him gasp as I press my cock into his hole. He is much tighter than the last guy; I don't think he is used to being fucked. And so I take my time, slowly at first, making it as pleasurable as possible for him. Lots of lube; long, slow movements, following his breath, stopping if it looks like it is too much. Any sign of pain that was on his face as I penetrated him have gone, and now I watch him lose himself in the sensation of getting fucked. Gradually, his arse stretches, and I increase my pace. Within minutes, I am holding him around the hips, fucking him deeply. I feel him tightening and orgasming, and each time I slow down to sense the spasms of his arse around my cock, feeling his bowel get slacker and his body softer, sometimes barely moving until I can see that he wants more. All of my pleasure is coming from seeing how much he is enjoying it, how far I can push him. Every time it looks like it is too much, I ease off until his body tells me he wants more. I fuck him like this relentlessly until I am smashing him hard and fast in his arse, now stretched and gaping. I pull right out and, holding my cock around the base, push deeply into him, hearing him grunt as I thrust the last inch hard into him. I fuck him like a slut, listening to his cries, now out of control, his voice shaky, sounds that perhaps do not come out of him often. I fuck him so much better than the guy whom he had been watching so intently earlier, pounding him until his hole is wrecked, lube dripping out making a mess on the floor. Finally, I pull out, chuck the condom on the ground, and take a rest. He is stunned. He is shaking. He does not know what to do at first, but gathers his wits about him and silently pulls up his jeans. I am sitting on one of the vinyl cinema seats, amazed at his shyness. He is too timid to look at me, too awkward to talk. I tell him not to forget his jacket is on the floor, which he takes as a dismissal and creeps off into the night through the clouds of cigarette smoke of the people who had been watching us. With the light of the movie illuminating me at the back of the hall, I wank myself off, not focusing on the film at all, nor on anyone else, coming on the floor. Orgasms that are hard work are best. I wipe my hand on a tissue and chuck it there as well. The well-dressed older man, who had given me such disparaging looks earlier, but who had been watching this whole performance, made some inaudible remark that sounded like disgust and left. I followed him soon afterwards.