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Introduction:

If you just got here, go back to chapter (1) :).
Muse (6)

7:18

I stood in the hallway inside the door of me and Lisa’s apartment. I had parked in the lot behind the building and went in the back door, so though our balcony faced the street they hadn’t seen me come in. The glass doors to the balcony were swung wide and I could feel the breeze and hear Lisa and Aliona’s voices. I took a beer from the fridge and then put it back, pouring a glass of water from the jug instead. They were still talking and still didn’t know I was here.

“What I really want to do is write, “Aliona was saying, “I don’t even care what, as long as I’m writing.”

“When Mark was in high school he wanted to be a writer,” Lisa said, then continued with a laugh in her voice, “he wasn’t actually very good at it. All his stories had happy endings.”

“What’s wrong with happy endings?” Ali asked her jovially.

“He didn’t write them very well,” she went on, “he doesn’t think he has a frame of reference for ‘happy ending’. He’s kind of a moody guy.”

“Ya think?” Aliona asked, and they both started laughing. “So you’ve known him a long time, huh?”

“I first met him in grade 8, but we didn’t start hanging out together until the year after that. When I lost my leg he was the only person that stayed by me. All my other friends ditched me. I think they didn’t want a reminder of what could happen to them at any moment. They were the beer-and-drunk-driving-in-trucks-on-gravel-roads crowd.”

I drained the glass of water, poured another, and leaned against the edge of the wall between the kitchen and living room so I could see them. Lisa was wearing her black running shorts and white top, her short blonde hair pulled away from the sides of her face and tucked behind her ears. Aliona was wearing one of my black and gory t-shirts and a pair of camouflage shorts from my closet. It was a loose shirt, and the shorts came to just below my knees; I’m not a tall or barrel chested guy but on her they looked huge making her look even smaller than normal. She had had a shower and her hair was still half wet and hanging over her shoulders with her bangs just below her eyebrows. Leaned back in the deck chairs, they had their feet near to each other’s on the little table between them. Aliona was wiggling the toes on her bare feet and sipping on something tropical-looking from a large glass full of ice. Lisa had a half-full Corona, twirling the bottle lazily in her fingers.

“Is that how…” Aliona sounded sheepish as she pointed at Lisa’s prosthetic, the shoe removed so that only a round rubber peg sat next to her other perfect foot.

“Yuppers,” Lisa replied without any hesitation or shyness at all. She had long gotten over her lack of a leg, though people just meeting her often treated her delicately on the subject so as not to upset her, “I was driving home drunk from a keg party and swerved across the center line on the highway into an oncoming truck.”

“Holy shit,” Aliona said, the corners of her mouth turning down and her eyes popping open, putting one of her little hands over her mouth.

“It’s no big deal,” Lisa said easily, making it sound true.

Her understatement was massive. She always played it off like it was no big deal and most people had no idea the depth of this woman’s strength nor the guts she possessed to even be alive. It hadn’t just been ‘a truck’ as she put it. It was a large tanker truck, common on the highways near out home town, carrying a load of raw oil to a refinery. The driver of the truck had been thrown through his windshield and lay dying in the ditch; all alone on the side of the highway in the middle of the night, her leg mangled and tangled in the wreckage, she had had to wrench and tear herself free so she didn’t choke to death on the thick black smoke coming from the tanker as it lay on its side smoldering and burning. Even if the wreck of twisted metal and glass hadn’t slowly burned into a blackened skeleton before help arrived there wouldn’t have been enough of her leg left to save after she was done ripping herself free. Nothing had scared her since that day. She was the strongest person I knew. I let out a quiet laugh of disbelief still awed after all these years at what she had been able to do to free herself, shaking my head. They both turned and looked into the living room.

“Mark!” Aliona yelled, putting her drink down and rushing over to me.

She threw her arms around my waist and pressed her face into my chest. I put my water down on the mantle of our gas fireplace and put one hand on the small of her back and the other on the back of her still-wet head. I inhaled her freshly showered smell. She smelled like Lisa, who was looking at me with her eyes wide and her eyebrows up, a questioning look on her face. Her gaze passed from my face to my bandaged hand on Ali’s back and her expression turned down into a frown.

“What the fuck did you do to yourself, Mark!?” she asked, her voice rising in concern as she got up and stepped over the doorway into the living room.

“It’s nothing,” Aliona had pulled back and taken my bandaged hand in hers, I winced as she looked up at me in shock but she didn’t let go.

“Mark!” Ali said, concern twisting her face into a grimace. I took my hand out of hers, wincing again.

“There was an accident at the studio,” I said, looking down so as not to meet either of their gaze. No one meant more to me than these two girls, so why was I lying?

“Oh, an accident,” Lisa said condescendingly, “good thing I’m stupid, or I might think you’d been in a fight.”

“Who did this to you, Mark?” Aliona asked quietly, momentary anger coloring her worry as she looked up into my grey eyes with her emerald stare.

“Yeah Mark, who did you do that to?” Lisa asked with one hand on her curvy hip as she frowned at me.

“It’s not important,” I said, going back into the kitchen. I couldn’t look into either of their eyes.

“Cut the bullshit, Mark Fox,” Lisa snapped at me, her voice rising in anger. It was a tone she seldom used, “No more running; tell me what the fuck is going on. Right. Now.”

Aliona looked from Lisa, to me, then back to Lisa with her brow knitted in worry. Every time I’d seen her make a face like that it was because of me. I hated it. This day just kept getting better and I wished again that I’d killed Jarv.

“Maybe I should go…” Aliona started meekly.

“No, stay,” Lisa said firmly, cutting her off, “I want you to be here for whatever Mark’s about to tell us.”

They both just stared at me, Aliona’s green eyes filled with worry and Lisa’s blue and as sharp as the shards of glass they’d dug out of my hand, cutting into me as she ground her teeth and scowled. I winced and flexed my right hand a bit, feeling the stitches in my palm pull a bit. I let out a breath as I looked down from them and then back up at Lisa.

“I put some kid in the hospital,” I said plainly, “he had it coming.”

“What!? Oh for fuck’s sake Mark, why!?” Lisa yelled; Aliona flinched at her tone.

“That’s a long story,” I said simply, trying to keep my face emotionless as I felt the anger rising again.

“Good thing we don’t have anywhere to go. Spill it,” Lisa said, crossing her arms under her breasts.

We sat in the living room and I told them both what had happened. I started with the events of last night to fill Lisa in, and then recapped what had transpired at the studio. I left out gory detail, sticking to the basics. Retelling it to these two perfect and beautiful girls I was shocked at the vivid facts of what I had done. I realized that if no one had stopped me I really would have kept beating on Jarv until my hands were swollen, shattered lumps. I shuddered at the thought of it. When I was done, ending the retelling with being arrested, Lisa just sat there with her jaw clenched in anger shaking her head. Aliona looked up at me with tears forming on her bottom eyelids.

“You didn’t have to…um…I wish you hadn’t done that for me,” she said sadly.

“He didn’t, sweety,” Lisa said, disgust evident in her tone, “I get it now, Mark. You did it for her.”

“What?” Ali asked, looking from Lisa to me, “Who?”

I leaned forward and put my face in my hands. I didn’t think I could do this. Not now. There had been too much strong emotion in the last few days and it was catching up to me fast. Aliona was right; I didn’t have to do that to Jarv. Lisa was right; I run from this sort of thing at every turn. Cyan had been right; I always fuck this up. When it came right down to it my father had been right too; I wasn’t worth a damn. He had called it when I was still in junior high. If I could go back in time to just before the cancer started taking him I’d take the beer out of his hand, make him stop screaming and hitting us, and tell him he had had me pegged all along. I’d look him in the eye and tell him “It all makes sense now Dad, now that I’m seeing things your way.” And while he said “I told you so you worthless little shit” I’d punch him in the fucking mouth for not teaching me how to be a man. I could taste irony and self loathing in my mouth, and it made me feel sick.

“Tell her about the tattoo, Mark,” Lisa said with a bitter voice, “she asked me while you were off being a hooligan and getting arrested and I couldn’t tell her because you still haven’t told me. I get it now though, so you don’t have to worry about me. But tell her. You’re a real asshole.”

Lisa got up and grabbed her shoe from outside and snapped her metal ankle into it, looking at me with disgust the whole time and shaking her head ever so slightly side to side. She had had braces when she was in school, and the slightly puffed out ‘brace face’ cheeks had stayed with her after they were removed years ago. Normally it gave her cute and charming dimples when she smiled, which was almost always, but she wasn’t smiling now and so they only accented her scowl. She stalked to the door without looking back and left. I saw her through the open balcony as she stopped and leaned over to put her hands on her knees on the sidewalk outside, her back shaking a bit, before she stood up, wiped her eyes, and then jogged off down the block.

“Did I do something wrong?” Aliona asked me shyly.

“Oh man,” I said to myself, then looked at her, “no Ali, you didn’t do anything wrong.”

I told her about Cyan. It was hard. I’d never told the story out loud before. Those who knew already knew, and those that didn’t hadn’t ever pried at it very hard knowing that I’d recoil the other way into myself and lock up even tighter. I’d never seen the need to talk about it. Now though, with it all pouring out of me at once, I was overcome with grief. It was the hardest thing I’d ever done, but I did it. Aliona sat slightly apart from me on the couch, resisting the urge to reach out to me several times as I spoke and tried not to cry and spoke some more.

“So that’s why last night I…I…” I could see Aliona in my mind’s eye, twisted up and convulsing and turning grey in my arms in the back of my car, and the words wouldn’t come anymore. I’d used them all up.

“Shhhhhhh…” she said, coming to me then and putting her arms around me, holding my head against her little chest and letting me cry into my shirt she was wearing. When I pulled back from her to look into her eyes she was crying too, quietly; just tears and a sad little grimace, no sobs. She sniffled and wiped my tears from under my eyes with her tiny finger tips. She looked straight into me with her intense green eyes.

“Just don’t try to make me into her.” she said finally, her lower lip quivering a bit, “Promise, Mark.”

I nodded and she wiped her tears away; we looked into each other’s eyes for some time before she finally smiled, her face brightening.

“I’m going to go home now,” she said, “I called my aunt before you got here and she’s super pissed at me…and you need to talk to your friend.”

“Can I see you later?” I asked her as I walked her to the door.

“Tomorrow, okay?” she answered, “You reallyreally need to talk to your friend, Mark. She loves you.”

She left in my clothes. I went out onto the balcony and watched her go down the street, her head hung down somewhat; whether in contemplation or something else I couldn’t tell. I put my hat on and sat down on the bench by the door. Lisa had bought me new running shoes every year for the last five, but I almost never jogged with her. I was usually too hung over or racked out from not sleeping for three days. I changed into some shorts and a shirt that didn’t have blood on it and pulled the shoes on. They felt uncomfortable, never properly broken in, but I laced them up anyways and went outside. I looked in the direction Lisa had jogged off and started running.

9:04pm

It was hot out despite the hour and I was too out of shape for what I was doing. I was drenched in sweat, my head was pounding fiercely, and my vision was blurry. I didn’t stop running though, only slowing down from time to time, until I found Lisa. She was sitting with a bottle of water on the running path by the river, leaned back on the bench with a calm look on her face squinting at the clouds with her nose wrinkled. A frown ruined that when she saw me, and she crossed her arms.

“Fuck off,” she said as I approached, “I can’t stand to look at you right now.”

I sat down beside her anyway. She looked at me, to the path in front of her, then back at me.

“You’re an asshole,” she said.

“For real,” I replied, “I am.”

“I don’t forgive you,” she said bluntly.

“I didn’t ask you to,” I said, sharper than I meant.

“Fuck you, Mark Fox.”

“Keep going, I deserve this,” I nodded my head and braced for it.

“No!” she yelled, “for fuck’s sake, stand up for yourself! What’s wrong with you!?”

“I bet you could tell me,” I said, still calm and waiting for it.

“Jesus, Mark! You set yourself up for shit like this and then just sit there and take it!” tears of anger were coming to her eyes and her voice was getting rougher with emotion, “At least have the balls to kick your own ass and stop making the people that care about you do it for you!”

I grimaced and nodded, waiting for her to continue. “What!?” she yelled at me, “don’t just sit there being a dick! Say something for once!”

“All this shit keeps happening to me,” I said to Lisa, “and then I don’t do anything about it, I just run away. I get what you’re saying.”

“Fuck that passive bullshit!” she kept yelling, “Take some fucking ownership over your trainwreck of a life, you fucking pussy!”

I looked at her, confused, my heart breaking at how far away I had pushed her in the last years without even realizing it.

“Wipe that fucking puppy dog face off, stop thinking about yourself for a second, and talk to me!” she shouted before continuing, quieter and intense, “Can’t you just be present for once in your life?”

I didn’t say anything though my mouth opened and closed several times as I tried to finds words.

“Fuck, dude. You really do suck at this,” she said to me, moving closer and putting her arm around me, her anger fading. We sat like that, her with her arm over my shoulders and me with me hand on her leg, before she finally said, “You didn’t kill her.”

“I don’t want to…” I stopped midsentence when I saw the anger return to her eyes and she took her arm from around me. “Sorry.”

Her voice got thicker and sadder as she spoke. “So you can talk about it with whoever this little girl Aliona is, that you met a few days ago, but you can’t talk to me? We’re like brother and sister, man.”

“I’m sorry Lis. I’ve been a shitty friend.”

“Fuckin’ rights you have,” Lisa said to me intensely and slowly, “you have no idea what people go through for you but you think you’re all alone.”

“’What people go through for me?’ You mean ‘what I put people through’.”

“No one would do the shit they do for you if they didn’t want to do it,” she explained, “you just take it all for granted until something goes wrong and then you expect everyone to drop their shit and tend to poor fucking Mark Fox. That little girl almost died last night, and all she talked about while you were gone was how bad she felt that she wrecked your night. Your night, asshole.”

“Fuck,” was all I could think to say.

“Fuck? That’s it? Pull your head out of your ass and look around, buddy. Between the past and the future you’ve lost sight of where you are. What you’re doing. Who you’re doing it with. You have real friends and you fucking piss on them and expect them to smile and take it. Remember my birthday last month?”

I didn’t. For the first time since we had known each other I had forgotten Lisa’s birthday. “Ah crap,” I said, looking into her deep blue eyes, “I’m sorry Lis. We were going to go to…”

“…the opera, “she finished my sentence for me, “I’d never been to the opera and I wanted to wear a nice dress and drink champagne and go to the opera and you said you’d wear a suit and take me.”

“And now you still haven’t gone because of me,” I was an asshole, she was right, “I’ll make it up to you. Anytime you want. I’ll take you tonight if you want.”

“Oh, I went,” she said, tears coming to her eyes and into her voice again, “I put on my nice dress and I went alone.”

I started thinking about it. It wasn’t just Lisa. Jean had asked me more than once to come over and have a barbeque at his house, but I couldn’t bear to go back where Cyan had OD’d. Keith asked me all the time to go for a beer with him after sessions at the studio, and the only time I’d said yes was yesterday when I had nothing better to do. At every turn, when forced into being present and having to be myself I escaped into some transient world of bullshit where I could live vicariously through my own image. My perception of myself had become entirely based on how I perceived others perceiving me. I shared this thought with her and she listened patiently, waiting for me to finish before she said anything.

“This is going to sound selfish, Mark; but I’m going to say it anyways. I’ve never told anyone this before,” the hint of trepidation in her voice turned into raw emotion as she went on, “I ripped my own fucking leg off and all I was thinking about while I did it was how sad you would be if I died. And you ditched me on my fucking birthday so you could go be big important Mark Fucking Fox.”

Her tears came freely now and she put her face in her hands, her prosthetic clinking a bit as she shifted her feet in the gravel in front of the bench. I put my hand on her back and started to rub her shoulder but she shrugged my hand off. I’d gone out to an album release party for a band I didn’t even like so I could try to poach them for the studio and get the labels business for their next project. The label reps weren’t even there though, so I got drunk and ended up fucking the girl from the shooter bar on her living room floor at 5am. I’d laughed with some of my staff the next day about how we’d been startled when her preschool daughter came into the living room crying and asking “mommy, what’s wrong?”, no doubt worried and confused at the yells that had woken her. She kept pulling me into her with her hands on my ass and tried to tell the girl to “go to bed and mommy will come tuck you in soon”. When the girl didn’t leave, she had got up to put her back to bed and then finished me off with her mouth while she knelt in her entrance way, on her hands and knees on the dirty linoleum with my cock in her mouth amidst a bunch of shoes. I didn’t even know her name. I thought back now to how scared that little kid had looked, coming into the room terrified at what I might be doing to her mother. It wasn’t funny at all anymore. I could have been with Lisa.

“Lis, I can’t make that up to you. I know I can’t. I can’t apologize, it wouldn’t be good enough.” I said to Lisa while she cried. I tried to touch her again but she shrugged my hand away once more, “Just know that I really am sorry.”

“I want to be alone right now, Mark,” she said, her voice muffled by her hands, “please go away.”

I got up and started to walk down the gravel path. I wondered to myself if sometimes it really is just too fucking late? I heard Lisa shift on the bench behind me as I walked away and I looked back at her; stopping, hoping she would ask me to come back and sit down again. She was looking at me with her cheeks all read and blotchy from crying and tears still in her eyes and on her face.

“Nice shoes,” she said; her voice still heavy with emotion, but her nose wrinkling a bit as she tried for a smile.

“Thanks, this great girl I know bought them for me,” I made to take a step back towards her but she held out her hand, palm out towards me.

“I meant it, fuck off, seriously. I’ll see you later.” her smile grew more genuine though and as I walked away she called after me one last time so I turned again, “Mark! About what I said the other night. It’s not you I’m worried about after meeting her. I don’t know how, but I can tell she is good enough for you. It’s you I’m gonna kill if you break that girl’s heart. You’ve broken your share already.”

10:16am

A week after the incident with Jarv, Pat, the owner of the studio, had flown in for a meeting with me, Keith, and the label rep. They weren’t going to sue the studio; Keith had managed to prove to them that nobody could have stopped what happened so they were going to pursue it against him personally. Once you added up the cost of the studio time, labor, and the projected future worth of the recorded material (which they always exaggerated) it was a staggering sum. I had enough distance from the incident now to feel really good about that. Looking at the figure on the paper in front of me on my desk I had tried to imagine Jarv’s face when he heard it in court. Stupid little fucker; he’d lost his entire rep as a DJ and to get back at me he had fucked himself even harder in the ass than his little brain could even fathom.

The label had suspended recording, though, while looking for a new space to work in. They’d be damned if they were going to trust us any further after something like that. They were a major, but they weren’t the only one and life would go on. The story of what I had done to Jarv had circulated through the industry and even the label’s A&R shook my hand as he left the studio and told me “by the way…nice work”. It wasn’t uncommon for a record to end up in limbo like that; for every album that went to the stores there were four more that were never even finished as the business eclipsed the art and paper pushers determined the future of the band. Keith and his guys were contractually bound though and couldn’t move to another label, which left them all desperate and hungry as their advances dwindled away and no new money came in.

Pat was mad. There was no doubt about that. The repairs to Studio A had been expensive, but he wouldn’t let me pay out of pocket for it. I could afford it, business had been really good and I had been a workaholic in the booth since Cyan had passed away, but he wouldn’t have it. An employee had done it, the business would pay. It didn’t surprise me when he asked Keith to wait outside and closed my office door. Pat was a thick chested man, tall and imposing, and he loomed large as he walked back from the door. He had been in the recording business for long enough that nothing surprised him anymore. You could tell him unicorns had taken the booth to the moon and burned it and he’d just sit and nod and come up with a plan. I was worried though; he had a look on his face I’d never seen before. I’d been getting that a lot lately. I was pretty sure I was about to be fired.

“Alright Mark, sit down,” he said firmly. He sat behind my desk and I took one of the other chairs across from him, “we have to talk serious now.”

“Patty, I fucked up. I know,” I told him, leaning my elbows on the desk and meeting his eyes so he’d know I wasn’t trying to get off easy.

“Shut up Mark, you did what you had to. I’m too old to be angry for long. If someone had tried to kill my ex-wife, or for fuck’s sake one of my daughters, I’d have shot him in the head and plead guilty with a smile. That conversation is over. I’m trying to talk to you about something else.”

I nodded, waiting, relieved.

“I’m too old for this shit,” he went on, “I need out. You know me; I’m plain and straight to the point. Dicking around with too many words is for young guys like you. I need a partner and I want it to be you. Buy me half out so I can fuck off and bang little Latinas on a beach somewhere. I know how much you make. Do it.”

I was shocked. I sat there for a bit just staring at him.

“Close your mouth and quit looking at me like I just whipped my cock out. If you say no I have other people, but then you won’t be your own boss anymore. Yes or no? You can’t push faders and fight with bands forever.”

“Uh…okay.” I said, “Yes.”

12:34pm

Keith and I sat on the patio of the steakhouse and he drooled over the prime rib on the plate in front of him, sawing off huge bloody pieces and putting them in his mouth before finishing the previous bite. He’d ordered it rare and the blood had soaked into his stuffed potato. He almost seemed shocked when I’d asked him to go for lunch with me. We’d dropped Pat off at the airport and I had driven us downtown to one of my favorite restaurants.

“So what’s the shit, homey?” he asked around the food in his mouth, “You gonna propose to me now or something? I prefer white gold and I don’t like diamonds.”

As the band’s manager, I knew Keith had made sure he had an out or two in the fine print of their contract with the label. He could work on other projects, take other jobs, and generally do his own thing; unlike the rest of them who were stranded in ‘disc hell’ as it’s called. In addition to be a half-assed drummer and a stellar band manager, Keith had learned his way around a recording studio fairly well by hanging around even when they weren’t in session. He’d been in bands most of his life and the business side wasn’t foreign to him.

“Sort of, actually,” I said. He stopped chewing the meat in his mouth and looked at me suspiciously, “You told me last week I could call on you if I needed anything.”

“Yeah…” he said, waiting and still not going back to chewing.

“I need you to work for me Keith. I need a studio manager. You want the job?”

He choked a bit on his prime rib and reached for his pint to wash it down.

2:12pm

Things had been good between me and Lisa because I’d actually taken a stab at being present in my own life after our argument by the river. I was still making tracks, but instead of trying to imagine how they’d go off on the floor, I pictured instead what they’d do to Aliona. Sending them off to other DJs they were exploding on dance floors around the world. I received endless calls from promoters to travel and DJ but I turned them all down. I let my booking agent go, much to her chagrin and surprise. She’d tried to convince me that this was exactly the time to push harder but I couldn’t bring myself to step in front of the decks in front of a mass of flailing people again. The memories were all too fresh, both of Aliona but also of Cyan now that I had spoken about it out loud and released it from where I’d kept it clutched in a black inky knot inside of me for the last five years. I spent most of my time either at the studio during the day or doing things with Lisa or Aliona at night. I had been worried at first that it would be too little too late; but as I was learning, real friends don’t work like that. It’s never too late.

When I was with Aliona, the world stood still for us. We went for walks, we went for supper, we talked about nothing for hours, and sometimes we just sat and smiled in silence. I wasn’t very good at the talking at first, but she had a maniacal persistence now that I had started to open up to her. I learned about her as well. She was closemouthed at first, almost more so than me, but I was slowly learning about her. She had amazing talent as a writer and when she finally let me read some of her work I was blown away. Sitting in a park by the river she had bit her lip nervously and then taken a little coil bound book from the satchel she had had with her and just handed it to me wordlessly. As I flipped through page after page of beautifully handwritten stories and essays I was breathless.

“What I really like though is poetry, but there’s no money in it,” she had said as I neared the end of the notebook.

“You should write songs then,” I had told her, “ghost writers can make more than the bands they write for.”

She had seemed surprised at this, so I explained how it worked to her. Like with producing, there was no risk factor. If you were good at it you were paid for your work whether it sold well or not on the other end; and if it did sell then they kept paying you for it. You didn’t even need to go to school for it, and that part excited her. She didn’t like school and wasn’t looking forward to the end of summer when she had to go back, not knowing anyone in the city except me and Lisa. She had been to a lot of schools apparently, moving constantly as she grew up. I wanted to ask “what campus?” or even “what grade?” because I still hadn’t asked her how old she was. I cared less and less every day that I spent with her, so I didn’t bother.

There was something about her past she didn’t want to talk about, and I could tell it was tangled up with her family, moving all the time, and going to different schools. All I’d gotten out of her was that in the last town she’d lived in she’d earned the nickname ‘All-alone-a’ because of her distance from other people and lack of desire to make friends. I didn’t want to see her make the same mistake of closing off from the world that I had, but I also knew, from my own experiences, that when you push a person like that they move further away. I still hadn’t met her little sister Kate or her aunt Leslie and she didn’t seem in a hurry to introduce me so I didn’t press that either. She always got nervous and shy when I’d bring it up so I left it alone. She’d tell me when she was ready.

We kissed all the time, anywhere, passionately and without thought to how it might appear. We got strange looks from people, but that only made us laugh and do it more. Our touching and flirting continued as well, but there was a comfortable reserve now. She had spent the night with me once since the day she had almost died, but we only lay together in each other’s arms moving slowly against each other and took it no further. The sexual tension and energy between us was increasing, and going as far as we had in the first few days we had known each other made this new flirtatious game and the chase of it more exhilarating. Instead of what could have turned into a passionate but empty fling, we found ourselves in the grip of a serious courtship. I had never done this before; all my relationships had started with sex and became something more after the fact, both parties clutching at what they wanted the other person to be for them instead of actually being true. Obviously, I being the first guy she had even kissed, she had never had this before either and I felt her youthful energy rubbing off on me. I felt young again, living instead of dying, and everyone I knew was happy for me.

After Keith had accepted my job offer and we talked about some details I dropped him off at the studio where his car was. Driving towards home I called Aliona.

“Mark!” she exclaimed, her voice brimming with excitement, “I was just day dreaming about you!”

“Oh yeah? ”

“Yeah…I was dreaming about going swimming, and wearing a tiny little bikini, and then making you so horny that you couldn’t keep your hands off of me,” she explained, her voice getting breathy and provocative. “You grabbed me with those big hands of yours and touched me all over my little body, and put your finger in my tight little pussy while I squirmed and put my tongue in your mouth…”

“I’m driving here, you want me to crash?” I asked with a chuckle.

“...and then, when your cock was nice and hard, I wrapped my hand around it and put it in my mouth.”

“You’re feisty today,” I said eagerly, “don’t write checks you can’t cash, I’m having a great day and I’m feelin’ this.”

“Can’t cash? I gave you a deposit, Mark…remember?” a pleading tone had entered her breathy voice.

“I know where we can swim and no one will see us,” I told her suggestively.

“No one? I dare you to come and get me then, Mark. I’m going to put something tiny on and wait for you outside…meow,” and she hung up.

I don’t normally break speed limits, but there’s no pointing having a car like mine that can do what it does if you aren’t going to bend the rules from time to time. I covered the distance in record time and pulled up on the block with a screech as I braked.

Aliona saw me and leaned back sexily with her shoulders against a tree by the sidewalk up to her building with her hips pushed forward and her back arched, twirling her hair around one of her left fingers and biting the index finger of her other hand, wearing her white flip flops on her tiny feet. She had on a short, loose, and almost see though short sleeved pink shirt, unbuttoned but tied at the bottom to show her white bikini top underneath; as I stopped the car I could see it wasn’t a bikini top at all…it was a small bra with shallow cups that didn’t do much to cover her perfect but incredibly small breasts. A thin pink cotton skirt just barely covered her pelvis and was very tight around her narrow hips. If it was any smaller it would be a belt and so it was positioned just so, so that it went around the middle of her ass and across her pubic bone…nothing more. I could see the white strings of her thong pulled up over her hips, and the top half of the white triangle covering her pussy peeked above the front hem. She skipped over to the door, winking and grinning, and as she opened it she purposefully dropped her phone to the sidewalk, looked at me with feigned surprise, and licked her lips as she leaned down to pick it up. Stretching slowly down, bending only at the waist, she ran one of her tiny hands up her right thigh and cupped her ass cheek with it, stretching on finger out to tease under the string of her thong and run it down to her pussy. She rubbed it there for a second with her hair sliding slowly off her shoulders and into her face, and then removed it only after she had stood up straight again.

She slid smoothly into the seat beside me and closed the door, leaning over slowly and licking the back of my right earlobe with her pink, wet, little tongue. Her lips were glossed pink and I could smell her bubblegum; cotton candy. She looked up into my eyes, still leaned close to me with her breathing faster than normal and put her hand in my crotch and squeezed what she found there; she raised then lowered her eyebrows quickly before winking again. She sat back in the seat as I pulled away from the curb and turned her phone off, throwing over her shoulder carelessly and into the back seat.

“No one’s going to phone me, the only person that matters right now is right here,” she said coyly. She grabbed my phone from the console between the seats and turned it off as well, tossing it to join hers. “Or you…”

She blew a tiny pink bubble, popped it, and pulled the gum back in her mouth with her tongue.

2:45pm

She didn’t ask me where we were going, she just sat in the passenger seat looking at me hungrily, pursing or licking her lips now and again. When she saw we were heading away from downtown and not into it she looked curious but said nothing. I drove west out of the city, and as I freed us from the snarls of traffic she giggled to herself, making a mischievous face and turning the music on. She turned it up loud; not as loud as usual but enough to feel the bass in our chests. She was chewing a fresh piece of gum, stretching it from her clenched front teeth with the tip of one of her slender little fingers and using her tongue to coil it back into her soft, wet mouth. She leaned up to my face and breathed into my ear.

“Hold this for me?” and then stretched out her tongue to my mouth. I kissed her and she put the gum into my mouth as she slid her little tongue around over my teeth and lips.

Aliona undid her seatbelt and pulled her feet up under her petite bottom, leaving her flips flops on the floor, and faced towards me. She pulled her hair back over her shoulders and put her hands into my lap, undoing my belt. She leaned her little head down and I felt her pull the button open with her teeth. Her left hand was on my right thigh and her right undid my zipper. Using both little hands she reached into my pants and slowly took out my cock while I struggled to keep one eye and at least part of my mind on the road. I engaged the cruise control so I could move my feet a little wider and leaned the seat back a bit more; leaving one hand on the wheel, I moved the other to her little ass and pushing the thin string of her thing between her ass and her pussy opening to the side from behind her. As she put my head in her tiny mouth I slid one finger along her slit, feeling rather than hearing her moan. I continued to touch her bare pussy lips, moving my finger between them and spreading her wetness around. The heat coming from her was unreal, and she began shifting at the waist to intensify the contact. Her tongue moved around my tip in her mouth and I could feel her sucking gently with her lips, quivering and twitching, wetly wrapped around where my head and shaft joined. Her mouth was so warm and wet and I could feel some of her saliva running down my shaft; when it ran down onto her little fingers where she had both hands wrapped around me she started to move them up and down in time with her soft suckling. As I touched her pussy firmer and started inserting the tip of my finger into her tight opening I could feel her moaning more and she sucked harder, pulling her lips in to cover her teeth. Her head began to bob up and down slowly in time with the music.

As my finger went deeper into her she took more and more of me into her mouth so that by the time I had the palm of my hand clutched over her ass and my middle finger all the way inside her unbelievably tight pussy she was taking more than half of my length in and out as she sucked my cock while I drove. Her moaning was intensifying and I could feel it vibrating through me from her mouth. She started moving her head up and down faster and her hair was coming forward from her back and shoulders over into my lap and around my cock and her hands. I started moving my finger in circles deep inside of her instead of in and out and from time to time her body would flinch and I could hear her cry out slightly over the music. When she cried out she would pull her lips back with my cock deep inside of her mouth and bite very softly on my shaft with her teeth before going back to her increasingly wet up and down motion. The motions of her soft but strong muscles inside her wet pussy were becoming more frantic and she started jacking her head up and down on my cock, with her hands around it right where it entered her mouth. Her moaning was a constant sensation on me now, and her back and little ass was moving her pussy up and down on my finger in syncopation with her head. It was almost like we were in a race to see who could make the other cum hardest first.

I won. She pulled her face from around my cock and sat up rapidly, arching only at the small of her back, and looked up at me with her hair a tangled mess, some stuck to her wet face, some locks going into her wide open mouth. A look of blank abandonment was replaced with her devilish smile as she bit her bottom lip and the hair stuck there between her perfect white teeth and her eyes went wide. Her body convulsed up and down as she thrust her pussy down onto my finger, taking one of her hands from my throbbing cock and using her middle finger to rub her tiny clit. Her mouth spasmed open and closed and I heard her screaming as she leaned back further from the waist and her head lolled up and down, making her long hair dance against the leather seat under her.

“OH FUUUUUUUUUCK!” she screamed over the music, her eyes clenched shut and her face a grimace of pleasure. She screamed it again and I felt her pussy clamp around my finger as her whole body shuddered and she bit her lower lip even harder. Her wet juices flowed out passed my finger, down the back of my hand, and onto the seat beneath her. Eyes set determinedly and mouth wide, Aliona grabbed my cock in both hands and plunged her head back down onto it. I felt myself ram against the back of her mouth on the first stroke. She pulled up fast, half way, and rammed her head down again and I pushed passed the very back of her mouth and into the wet grip of her eager throat. I could feel her choke and gag but she lifted her head and did it one more time, half way again, forcing herself to learn how to open her throat to let me in all the way. One last time she raised her head only a quarter of the way up from where she was and shoved my cock into her face as far as it would go. I could feel her chin against the inside of my right thigh and her lips wrapped around the base of my cock. I yanked the car to the side of the road and put my left hand on the back of her head, holding her there, while my right finger still went in and out of her pussy; her throat swallowed and spasmed and choked as I came deep inside her neck. I could feel her body shaking as she struggled to stay there and I pulled my finger out of her so I could twine the fingers of both hands into her long, soft, brown hair. Over and over my cock jumped and throbbed and shot gob after gob of cum down her throat. As the surging stopped she swallowed around me several times and then slowly slid her mouth off of me. She leaned her ass back on her feet and sat up in the passenger seat, licking her lips while she panted and tried to breath. I could see her throat still making gagging motions and her face from the nose down was a mess of cum and her own spit. It flowed from her mouth over her lips and ran down her face and off her chin and dripped to her chest. Her hair was a tangled wreck, much of it stuck to her face or jumbled up at the sides and back of her head where I wrapped my hands in it. It was lurid and visceral and the hottest thing I had ever seen, and we stared at each other as if in shock.

She wiped at her face with her hand and licked it off her palm, still swallowing and panting heavily. She ripped off her pink shirt clumsily, struggling out of it with her whole body still rising and falling up and down on her feet as she struggled to breath and used it to roughly clean off her face. She slapped at the stereo with one hand, accidentally making it go louder suddenly and then down almost all the way. She spoke with effort, forcing a breath in between each word

“Holy…fuck…Mark…I don’t…I’m…oh…ohmygod…oh…fuck…”

She stayed there, sitting on her feet with her body moving up and down as her gasping and shivering subsided, looking into my eyes with her neck still spasming as she tried to make her throat and lungs work properly. I couldn’t feel my hands; they were all pins and needles and I was breathing almost as hard as she was. She sat slowly back into the seat, her hands pressed down into the leather beside her hips and her legs shaking as she stretched them out in front of her. Her chest still shook now and again. She looked over at me and her face changed from shock to a huge proud smile, open mouthed and toothy. She shook one more time before she opened her still wet and sloppy mouth.

“I did it.” she said shakily. She gained more composure, wiped her mouth with her hand one last time and grinned her grin and winked her wink and said much steadier and louder, “I did it.”

She looked out the window then looked quizzically at me, biting her lip. “When did we pull over?”

She moved her body in small little shifts like a proud preening cat to the barely audible music and all I could do was stare in complete and utter awe at her.

“I don’t know,” I said dumbly, my eyes still wide and my breath still ragged.

“C’mon,” she said coyly, gesturing through the windshield at the road and winking again “let’s go swimming.”
20 comments

anonymous readerReport

2013-01-23 11:25:37
James, Although the word Blaxploitation does not sound complimentary, at least it gave peolpe the opportunity to express themselves artistically and in turn provided the rest of us the opportunity to experience some great music and dress style leading to the 70s fashion that is still popular today. It was thanks to peolpe like Don Cornelius who created Soul Train that brought previously unknown music, and artists to the public who in turn appreciated them and made the music popular. Even today their music and the clothing from the 1970s is inspiring both modern day musicians and fashion designers alike.

anonymous readerReport

2013-01-13 19:47:26
A mliilon thanks for posting this information.

anonymous readerReport

2013-01-09 09:44:38
That bit about lisa getting dressed up and going to the opera alone really got me. I genuinely felt bad for the girl, and got rather choked up.

anonymous readerReport

2012-01-27 04:24:35
YMMD with that aswner! TX

anonymous readerReport

2011-09-14 02:44:05
I'm an avid reader of published romance books. I follow dozens of authors at a time. Published or not you're one of my top favs. I've read hundreds of stories here but have never bothered to comment. It says something to me and I hope to you that I took the time now.

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