This is a slow story, so if that's not your jam check out now. Part two is being written, but this is my first story so it's a god damn struggle.
Please enjoy, and yes, it's got a shit ton of grammatical/editing errors.
Carl sat frustrated in late afternoon traffic on the 405. There didn’t seem to be a time when the highway wasn’t teeming with cars, there was peak traffic, rush hour, and regular, everyday, barely moving traffic. At least this year he had functioning air conditioning in his new, at least to him, 2014 Honda Civic. Last year in May he was driving the same shitbox Chevy Cavalier he’d driven out to LA from Milwaukee in. Nothing on his car had worked a decade back on the drive out, back in 2006, let alone 2017. Carl sighed as he finally started moving, albeit slowly, forward, away from work and towards home where a cold drink and no other worries waited.
It was Thursday around 7 when he finally got home, the sun still lighting up the west coast night sky. He worked as a personal assistant to Veronica Vasquez, insurance broker to the stars, at least that was her sales pitch. And god damn could she sell, she was clearing over 750k a year at this point, for a 36 year old from the poor side of town that was pretty impressive. Organizing her work, and the rest of her life, was not her strong suit however, which is where Carl came in. He’d gotten hired right out of USC’s Philosophy program at 22, originally he told himself, until he could save up enough for grad school. At 29, those dreams were starting to fade away, worn down by the constant tide of life. Carl had been an excellent high school student, good enough to get half of his tuition paid for through scholarships, and with dreams of the good life, he’d left his parents and sister in Milwaukee for LA. His upbringing had been mostly normal, his father worked as a mechanic and his mother on disability for as long as he could remember. He’d grown up taking care of his mother as well as he could as a boy, as his older sister had been in and out of mental institutions all her life and his father drunk as soon as he got home.
That isn’t to say that he didn’t enjoy his childhood, he had good friends in high school, a few girlfriends, and excellent marks, having learned very early on how to budget his time effectively having to take care of his parents. He wasn’t brilliant, but he worked hard and was smarter than your average bear, but where he was far outside the norm of his perfectly normal middle class suburban neighbourhood, was his dreams. He wanted to travel the world, make his mark on the world big and loud. That didn’t quite work out, but what his parents saw as him abandoning them meant he had no one to go back to. They were eeking out a miserable existence still, and he knew it, but they wouldn’t even talk to him. He had vowed on his long drive to the west coast, a fresh faced 18 year old, that he would never let himself become that....stuck.
And yet, at 29 he was. He liked his job, and he was great at it, but at the end of the day he was helping someone else make their mark on the world, and Ronnie’s mark was flashing neon and gold. He had never understood how his parents had gotten so stuck, but now he understood, it is very difficult to change the status quo, especially when you’re in it. He poured himself a vodka soda and stuck some leftover stirfry in the microwave, putting on the news to mindlessly watch. Normally, his days were a lot longer than this, and he was paid well for it, Ronnie was a generous boss, but for the next 5 days she was off the Spain to briefly meet a client, and then spend the time partying and enjoying the Mediterranean sun. That meant Carl didn’t have to actually go into the office tomorrow, and could work from home. He still had a few of her errands to run, but those could wait. For tonight, he was going to have a few more drinks, watch a bad action movie and pass out.
Carl woke up to his alarm, his phone blaring PSY’s Gangnam Style, at quarter to 9. He never liked the song, and now he hated it, but it was loud and annoying enough to get him to drag himself out of bed and across the room to turn it off. Normally, he had to be in the office in 15 minutes, but today he had time, so he made himself a decent breakfast, bacon and eggs, after a quick 30 minute work out in his apartment complex’s gym. He hated working out, but Veronica rode him about making sure he was “presentable”, which to her meant fit and preferably attractive. He was showering after breakfast when he heard his phone ring, time to start his day, he thought to himself.
“Good morning, this is Carl Winters,” he said with his phone on speaker as he toweled himself off. He half paid attention to the inevitable conclusion of the overly peppy temp on the phone, telling her that Veronica was unreachable for the next few days and that her boss would have to set up an appointment for next week. He looked at himself in the mirror, he was a pretty average looking guy, at least for a city as neurotic as LA. He was fit, lightly tanned and had near flawless teeth. Those were all things you could control, and if he had learned anything from his degree it was that controlling what you can is vital, as the world is full of maybes and unknowns. Sandy brown hair cut short with just enough on top to style it, although running his hands through his hair with a bit of styling putty was about as complicated as he got, a flat stomach, although no defined abs, and the hint of muscles in his arms and legs.
“As I said, she’s unreachable, how about next Wednesday at 10AM she gives Mr. White a call? Perfect,” he finally said, tiring of the temp’s prattling about the urgency of her bosses issues. He shaved after he hung up, keeping his face smooth was a recent development, but it made him look younger and that was beneficial to him usually, plus it made him feel less like his life was tick-tocking away into oblivion. During college he had grown a full beard and had long hair, fully embracing the philosophy major stereotype of absent minded and disinterested in the going-ons around him. Even if he was as lost in the clouds now as he was then, it put clients more at ease to see a young professional rather than a hippy when they walked into the office.
He answered and made a few more calls lounging around his apartment before he had to go and pick up a dress Veronica was having tailored for a fundraiser later in the month, and he needed to pick up a gift for her father, from her of course. He was thinking a fountain pen and some expensive tequila, she’d most likely forgotten it was her father’s birthday next week. She bought both of her parents cars last Christmas, well she’d paid for them, but Carl had picked them out. He sighed as he got into his car, knowing the traffic that invariably awaited him as he drove towards downtown, he was a bystander to the kind of life he had always dreamed of. What pissed him off most wasn’t the money, but the lack of purpose he had in his life. He got out of bed everyday because he had nothing better to do, not because he was excited start the day. Not that 100% all the time was attainable, or even ideal, but at least sometimes he wished he had that...fire in him.
He had a key to Veronica’s house in Venice, but dropped the dress off at the office, both because it meant less driving, and she was far more likely to head to the event from the office rather than home. He arrived at the office around 3PM, the office building that they resided in was still busy. Carl was Veronica’s only full time employee, she was part of Starlight Insurance, but they liked to “franchise” out their top earners, which meant that Carl had only one co-worker, which was fine by him. Office politics was far from how he wanted to spend his days, but it would sometimes be nice to have someone to talk to when he was meandering around the office on slow days. He munched on some celery sticks and put some jazz on as he fiddled with her calendar for the next month, trying to kill time to avoid hitting rush hour traffic on a Friday night. He’d been invited out for a club night by some old college buddies, but he was not super committed to jaeger bombs and tales of their sexual conquests tonight.
The door dinged while Carl was in Veronica’s office laying out papers for her to sign when she got back, and the wrapped gifts for her father along with a card. The glass surrounding her office was frosted, so he couldn’t see who it was and yelled that he’d be right out. When he opened the door into the main office space he was surprised, he did not find someone in business attire, but instead a 5 foot 4 girl wearing black skinny jeans and a leather jacket, with a shoulder bag slung across her body. She had sharp features, a defined jaw and long curly black hair that would have hide her facial features were they not so striking. Her vibrant green eyes relayed that she was just as surprised to see him, as he was to see her.
“Can I help you?”, Carl said, no idea if this woman was lost, a friend of his boss or a client, given it being LA, the wealthy dressed in all different ways, from ripped jeans to thousand dollar suits.
“You’re Carl, right? I’m just a friend of Veronica’s dropping something off for her,” she said with ease, the kind of confidence you only got from being very clever or too stupid to know better, again not a big help considering Veronica surrounded herself with equal amounts of both camps. Carl was usually pretty good at sizing people up, hell it was the better half of his job and he spent 4 years learning about why people thought the way they did.
“I can put it in her office, she’s not back until early next week.”
“I know... Alright here, put it in her safe would ya?”, she said, seeming unsure, but fairly resigned. She reached into her bag and pulled out a zip-lock baggy full of white powder.
“Oh, you’re her coke dealer, why didn’t you just say so? I’m assuming she’s already paid in advance?”, Veronica was a hard worker, and nearly equally as hard a partier, they’d never had explicit discussions about her drug use, but Carl assumed she was a more than occasional user. Knowing her, balancing just on the edge of addiction was probably half the thrill, although considering where she’d come from, Carl doubted she’d ever let herself fall off that cliff, it was a long way to fall. The woman standing in front of him nodded, and tossed him the baggy. He turned around back into his bosses office and unlocked and re-locked the safe after stowing the drugs. He finished organizing the papers, assuming that she had left, only to open the door to have her staring him down with a half smirk.
“You don’t seem like her type, you look far too clean cut for Ronnie to chill with, the kinda guy she makes fun of,” his bosses drug dealer said, a sparkle of mischief in her eyes.
“You’d be right, I’m not. I work for her, maybe she likes seeing someone she hates do her bidding,” Carl responded, doing his best to sound uninterested, sliding back into his desk, eyes barely flicking to her. She closed the distance and hopped up on the desk, her back to him, legs dangling over the edge, staying silent. Carl leaned back in his chair, deciding finally that it was cleverness that gave her the abundance of confidence this girl possessed, her posture near perfect, her nails neatly manicured with a solid black coat on, he understood why his boss and her got along so well, both, essentially, successful saleswomen, one was just a lot less legal, although many would argue both morally devoid.
“Maybe,” she said before turning her head towards him and leaning in, so she was inches away and eye level with Carl, “or maybe she just wants some dumb eye candy around to look at,” she said with a wink before hopping his desk with a surprising amount of grace. “C’mon, let’s get a drink.”
It wasn’t a question, and while a small part of him wanted to ignore her, he as far too captivated to consider it for more than an instant. He didn’t HAVE to be at the office anyway, and getting to know what his boss was like outside of work seemed like a good idea, despite the time they spent together they had always kept it entirely professional. He slipped his tan trench coat on as he followed her out of the building after locking up the office. She was silent and fell in step beside him despite their considerable height difference, she kept up. As they got out side she took a sharp left and crossed the street, Carl waited for a second before following. He was a step behind her by the time they’d finished crossing the street and she stopped suddenly, he nearly ran right into her. She turned sharply and opened the door to a bar called Luna’s, a fairly upscale bar that probably ended up with a dance floor by later in the night, but for now had tables everywhere, with some 90s hip-hop playing quiet enough you could still comfortably hold a conversation.
She walked all the way to the back and slid into a booth that wrapped around the table, Carl grabbed a seat across from her after hanging up his jacket on the hook beside the table. He slid his iPhone out of his back pocket and laid it face down on the table and looked up to see her bright green eyes fixed on him, a slight smile touching her captivating lips.
“What, you didn’t wanna sit next to me,” she said leaning forward with both forearms on the table, with her jacket now undone revealing a dark green V-Neck, her position pushing her breasts together pleasingly, “I promised Ronnie I wouldn’t hurt you, you’re safe with me.” Her half smirk never leaving her lips, every word dripping with sarcasm like she wanted to bait Carl into an argument. He doubted there was any way to get answer without coming across as confused as he felt, so instead, he opted to change the topic entirely.
“You seem to know everything about me, I don’t even know your name,” Carl said desperate to change the topic, he felt trapped under her gaze, like everything he said was going into a mental tally of his worthiness.
“I’m a little hurt Ronnie’s never mentioned me, here I thought you knew everything about her life,” she added a little pout at the end for effect before continuing in a more upbeat tone, “nice touch on the cars last Christmas for her parents, little hard to top that this year though.”
“I know everything about her professional life, and whatever she wishes to share with me about her personal, I’m her assistant not her confidant. From the sounds of it, that might be a title more attributed to you...” Carl trailed off intentionally, “I still haven’t caught your name.” Normally her behaviour would drive Carl to annoyance, but he couldn’t shake that penetrating green gaze and her general air of confidence that captivated him, he was doing his best not to sound or act like he was hanging off her every word and movement, he was sure he was failing. She cocked her hair to the side, her curly black hair flowing gracefully from behind her shoulder to in front, she looked about ready to speak before an overly peppy and attractive, but clearly aging, server interrupted listing off the drink and food specials for the day.
“Whisky sour for me annnnd... I bet he’d like a gin & tonic,” she replied, her gaze never leaving Carl, seemingly willing him to challenge her. He broke the impromptu staring contest and nodded silently at the server with a slight smile. After the server left, humming along to the music, Carl finally had the courage to speak up.
“Vodka soda would have been better, but close enough I guess,” he said, trying to sound as smooth and unworried as he could. He tried to remember the last time he had felt this...nervous around a girl, it must have been high school. Even in university he’d been smarter than most of his classmates and never nervous, and due to his dedication to his schooling he’d been pretty aloof as well, which some people mistook for calm and cool.
“It’s Alison,” she said, finally removing her gaze from him when the server, Jenny, Carl thought she’d said, to accept her drink with a polite smile, “and she doesn’t confide in me about very much, I just happen to pay attention to what people say, and when Ronnie parties she talks even more than usual,” she said with a dazzling smile. Her constant topic changes kept Carl off balance, but he was seeing more and more what inspired his boss to spend time with her drug dealer. She was disarming and at the same time dangerous, and she was clearly intelligent, and beautiful. It didn’t matter what your sexual orientation, spending time with pretty people was always a plus, regardless of gender. What was inspiring this girl, who presumably had no shortage of friends given both her personality and profession, to spend time with an aging office worker that just 24 hours ago was lamenting how close to depressed he was given his lack of forward progress in life, Carl didn’t know. And it was beginning to bother him how many things he didn’t know or understand in regards to Alison, and have no desire to find out, or at least not knowing wasn’t a deal breaker. After a couple of sips in silence, he couldn’t take her gaze any more, and he needed answers, he wasn’t used to being this in the dark about people.
“So what is you hope to accomplish?”
“What, in life? Or why am I sitting here getting a drink with you?”
“Both,” Carl said, starting to get used to her brashness and change of pace, “although mostly the latter, I don’t know you hardly well enough to ask what your aspirations are, or even if you have any.” For the first time Alison seemed a little shook by his response, but there was only a hint of uncertainty, and only for a second.
“Ronnie tends to keep good company, I mean she hangs out with me so clearly she’s got great taste,” she said with a soft laugh and a smile, “I had some time to kill and it’s always a good idea to expand one’s social circle, especially in my line of business. Plus, for how clean cut you look you were okay with my job, most people I meet like you don’t wanna know what I do, and those that aren’t are rarely as chill as Ronnie. There’s only so much time you can spend with addicts before you start to feel caught up in, I guess you’re just my breath of fresh air.”
“Um,” Carl was taken aback by the bluntness of her comments, and the amount of faith she had in him to be both decent and interesting, “I’m not sure I’m quite that impactful, I’m just a guy floating through a mediocre life without a real purpose,” she raised an eyebrow at him in surprise. “Sorry, bit of an over share, I’m not sure why I told you that, I don’t even think I’ve ever said that out loud before, let alone to a stranger.”
“I tend to have that effect on people, I’m just sooo trustworthy,” she said with a wink, and just like that diffusing the anxiety Carl felt, “besides, everyone feels like that sometimes. Well, almost everyone, your boss is probably the only one who at least seems like she knows who she is and what she wants all the time. That girl’s a fucking force of nature.”
“Yeah, tell me about it. You know, at one point I thought I’d have that sorta purpose in my life, probably too late for me now. What about you, you seem like you’ve got your life on a path, didn’t you ever want to do anything more...legal?”
“Of course, I think everyone that ends up having a career that’s laced with illegality, doesn’t start out looking to break the law, or at least that wasn’t the main draw for me... Maybe it was a bit, I was a bit of a rebel growing up, or at least I thought of myself as one,” she trailed off, taking a long drink of her Whisky sour. “I think what you said is right, I wanted a purpose, and when I was in my senior year I started partying with a lot of rich kids, trying to catch a taste of a life I didn’t have. Next thing I was buying drugs for them because it was....more convenient I guess, and then I started selling to them and it spiralled out from there. Even now I’m not really sure how I went from drug user to drug dealer, it just sorta happened I guess.” Alison looked down, pulling her drink around the table by moving the coaster, it struck Carl that despite all her confidence she was just as young and vulnerable as everyone else, what inspired her to share that bit of her mind with him was bothering him, he hadn’t felt this comfortable around someone in years, maybe ever.
She stopped fiddling with her drink and looked up at him, all trace of uncertainty wiped from her face, “But it’s not like I’m unhappy, I’m 24 and I’m my own boss, I make more money now that my parents ever did and barring any catastrophic misjudgment of character or mistake, my job doesn’t carry a significant amount of risk. Plus, besides the fact that I have no job history, or at least not one I can put on a resume, I can still have a normal boring life like you if I wanted,” she added a wink at the end, letting Carl know she wasn’t being serious. She downed the rest of her drink and waved the server over, “Another of mine, and a vodka soda for him, apparently I wasn’t quite right with my guess last time...” she rolled her eyes at the server eliciting a giggle from all three of them, “and how about 2 shots of tequila, it’s Friday after all.”
“Do days of the week even matter to you? You’re your own boss after all, can’t you set your own hours?”
“Yes and no, I could take the weekend off, but everyone else is partying so it’s the most lucrative time for me. During the week I have...regulars I guess you would call them, but on the weekends I have people that call me out of the blue every once in a while and want a hook up, and they’re not loyal, just looking for blow. So if I’m available, I’m more profitable, and I share at least one quality with your boss, I also don’t have much of a social life. It’s a little weird to hang out with clients most of the time because I always feel like I’m expected to...bring the party. Ya know, I picked up calling my customers clients from Ronnie, she said just because I was selling drugs didn’t mean I had to act like I was. She’s a big fan of calling it a ‘service’”, she said air quoting the word, “instead of thinking of myself as taking advantage of addicts, but instead that I’m just a conduit for people’s desires.”
“That sounds like something she’d say, it also makes you sound a little bit like a hooker,” Carl said, deciding to test the boundaries of their apparently comfort. Much to his relief, she laughed, accepting the fresh drink and shots from the server.
“To... breaking expectations,” she said as they cheers-ed their shots. They both downed them with a grin, Alison letting out a little “woo” as she finished hers. “Ya know I see why Ronnie keeps you around, you might look like an empty brained middle-classer, but you’ve still got some heart left in you. You’re not too old to, what was it you said, ‘find your purpose’,” air quoting the phrase he’d used earlier, momentarily letting Carl remember how young she actually was.
“Wait, how old do you think I am? Don’t tell me Ronnie is running around sharing my whole life story with everyone she gets drunk with,” Carl said in an exasperated tone.
“No, I don’t know THAT much about you,” she said with a small laugh, pausing to size him up, “I’d guess 27, you’re old enough to be tired, but young enough not to have given up.”
“29, pretty close, hopefully I don’t look toooo tired, I even got to sleep in today!”
“You’re almost 30? Shit, I thought you looked younger but acted older. Turns out you’re just oooooooold,” she said with a wink before she sucked back a good portion of her drink. Carl wasn’t sure if she was getting tipsy or just feeling more comfortable around him.
“I know, at this point my life is pretty much over, right?” he said with a laugh, pausing to take a sip of his vodka soda, “I say that jokingly, but sometimes it feels like it’s true, but then I look at Ronnie and she’s still always the life of the party and loves her work. I know she’s an...outlier but still, at least I know it’s not impossible.” Alison fixed him with those vibrant green eyes for a long moment, he felt like she was trying to gaze into his soul.
“Come to a party tomorrow afternoon, it’s a few blocks from here, it’ll be fun. Besides, then I’ll know there’s at least one other person there that isn’t just trying to use me for my blow.” She pulled out a business card and pen and scribbled an address on the back, “I’ve gotta go, this has been a really good time. I’m glad I decided to ignore Ronnie’s instructions to steer clear of you, she’s pretty protective you know? Come around 3pm, my numbers on the other side.”
“Um...” Carl was pretty hesitant, this was a great time and he was desperate to spend more time around Alison, but he wasn’t a huge fan of parties in general, and this one sounded like it was going to be full of people far too cool for him, “okay, I guess I can do that.” Finally deciding internally that if going to a party full of people he didn’t know was the cost to see Alison again, he was willing to pay, hell it might even be fun.
“Great,” she said flashing a dazzling smile, “oh and don’t worry about the drinks, you’re with me and I don’t have to pay here.” Carl gave her a questioning look, but decided what ever the answer to why not? was probably something he’d be safer, legally speaking, not knowing.
“I’ll see you tomorrow then,” he said, trying not to sound as hopeful as he felt, as she slid out of the booth, flicking her curly dark hair so that it all sat behind her shoulders. She gave him one last wink before turning on her heel and striding out of the bar with that same confidence he’d felt radiate off her when they met a little while ago. As he watched her go he admired her, she moved with the grace of a born athlete he decided, and her black jeans hugged her ass show casing it beautifully.
Carl shook his head, as if that would help clear the far-too-strong feelings he was having both emotionally and physically for this girl he’d barely met, and who would clearly have better options than someone like him. Hell, he didn’t even know if she had a boyfriend, she never mentioned it but that didn’t mean she didn’t. In her line of work he was sure she kept her personal life...personal.
He slid out of the bar, feeling a little unsure of just walking out without paying, but he saw his server and she smiled and wished him a good weekend, so whatever the arrangement Alison had with the bar she knew about it. He stepped out into the still shining sun, and began wandering back to where he had parked a few blocks away. He was doing his best not to stress about going to party that a drug dealer invited him to, he didn’t judge her for what she did, but the kind of people she hung out with could range from people as intelligent and in control as his boss, to the degenerate drug addicts eeking out a living trying to stay high enough to be happy. In college he’d experimented with drugs a bit, mostly hallucinogenics, being convinced at the time it was the path to higher understanding of the universe’s problems. While it wasn’t that, not by a long shot, it was fun and did bring up at least some interesting questions, and at least wasn’t a bad time. He’d done some acid with a college girlfriend and she’d ended up having a horrible trip, freaking out and spent several hours in a state of near catatonic panic.
He weaved through the, thankfully, bearable traffic towards his house, after picking up a burrito for dinner that was sitting on the seat warmer beside him. He was doing all that he could to distract himself from the unexpected stress of accepting an invite to Alison’s party. Well, actually it might not be her party, but he had invited him to it, so at least she knew the host well enough or didn’t care.
God damn it, why is this stressing me out so much? She’s just a girl, she’s barely older than I would have been leaving college, he thought to himself as he devoured the delicious burrito back in his apartment. Perhaps it was the speed that he felt comfortable around her is what, in hindsight, made him exceptionally uneasy. He’d shared his insecurities with some stranger, something he hadn’t done with anyone, hell he had barely admitted them to himself. His mind went round and round wondering, what she thought of him, what this party would be like, until he finally realized he’d been done eating for an hour and was sitting staring at an empty plate. He shook his head, trying, hoping, that would help to clear his head somehow, before he opened up his laptop to try and do some work, in an unsurprisingly futile attempt to distract himself. Ronnie was supposed to submit a summary of her growth plans and sales goals to the west coast head of operations. Last year she has just sent him a bottle of cheap rum with a note saying “fuck off, I’m doing fine,” needless to say that hadn’t gone over super well.
While there wasn’t actually anything he could do to his boss, as she was nearly entirely independent from the main company, and even if she wasn’t the numbers she brought in were exceptional. Still, she’d decided this year to be a little nicer, ‘no reason to make my job harder than it has to be’, she had said a month ago when the deadline was a week away. Carl had scoffed at that, he was pretty sure that ship had sailed, especially considering she put it off for so long the deadline was nearly a month past and she hadn’t even started the process. His job was to make her job easier, so here he was, writing up some bullshit about how she was “strengthening community ties” and “integrating business and social events to increase potential growth”. It was mostly true, it just was that she wasn’t going to make any drastic changes, she was already growing her business without any of that shit. As far as distractions went though, it wasn’t being very successful. An hour after he started he gave up, decided he’d try going for a run. 45 minutes later he was back, just as nervous about tomorrow, rethinking his drink with Alison just as much, but significantly sweatier. He had a cold shower and went to bed, putting on a House re-run marathon trying to numb his brain into sleep.
Around 3:20 the next day he parked about a block from the address Ronnie had given him yesterday, although he’d driven around aimlessly for the last 15 minutes before finally deciding he was late enough not to seem desperate. He chirped his car locked, leaving the sunroof cracked open in a vain attempt not to have it be sweltering when he returned, and walked towards the apartment building the address had lead him to. He was dressed in light blue, slim fit jeans and a loose fitting long black T, with a few (intentional) holes near the hem. He had been tempted to dress more...work-like out of comfort, but had decided against it at the last moment. He was already older than everyone attending this party, or so he assumed, no reason to dress like it too. He got to the lobby and wandered up to the doorman, looking a little lost.
“30th floor, I’m assuming?” the guy said, barely looking up from the issue of sports illustrated he was reading.
“Uh, probably, got invited to a party and-,”
“Yeah, 30th. You don’t need a key for the elevator,” the guy said, cutting him off. Clearly this was a conversation he had been having a lot today and was pretty over it.
“Thanks...” Carl said, wandering to where he thought the elevator would be. The 30th floor, it turned out, was not the roof, but it was a pool. He’d been to a few buildings set up like this when he had been looking for a new place to live a year back. They had this common pool area in the middle of the floor plan where it got some sun, but mostly served as a place to encourage residents to meet. There had been a big push in recent years to make the city feel less isolating, one of his professors at the time had gone on about it a lot. Apparently LA had a high suicide rate, and the concept of being alone in a big city was one that apparently now deserved the attention of serious academics, not just hippy love rings that spotted the city. In fact, he was pretty sure he had BEEN to this building, or one that looked identical to it, at some point, and nearly moved in. As he stepped out onto the open air pool, he was pretty shocked by how many people were here. There must have been at least 70 milling about, some floating in the pool, others lounging trying to catch sun and even a few especially intoxicated looking individuals dancing to the music playing from a DJ with a few small speakers.
Carl felt immediately out of place, he was certainly not cool enough to be a party with these people, and probably too old to even be trying to. He was social, sure, but he was a lot better in more intimate settings, his level of extroversion did not encompass this many new people all at once. The only thing holding him here was that he might have a chance at seeing Alison again, his desire to be near this girl was really starting to bother him. He’d been hoping the magic would have worn off with a good sleep, it did not. Something about the way she’d looked at him with such intensity he couldn’t quite shake.
He wandered towards the table where there was a bartender, far too bad at it for it to be his real job, he was probably just a tenant here getting paid a bit for doing it. But he poured a beer for Carl and chatted with him about the party, he was clearly stoked to be here. Apparently he was the one who MADE the beer, some shitty micro-brewery, well shitty by Carl’s standards anyway. It was serviceable cheap beer, on par with Budweiser or something of it’s like, but the guy was nice enough and really excited to get to talk about beer with Carl. As the guy yammered on about his process and ingredients, Carl scanned the party for Alison, spotting her sitting on a patio couch across the pool with some people. He’d looked over her the first few times, expecting her to be dressed similarly to yesterday for some reason, but today she was in a pastel green sun dress, with her long curly hair pulled into a bun, a few ringlets of it framing her face.
She looked a lot younger, and a lot less like a drug dealer, but equally as stunning. He made his excuses to the beer maker, who was now chattering about the weather, Carl now understood why the guy had been so excited someone wanted to talk to him, he seemed to love to hear himself talk. As he got closer to Alison, she spotted him, flashing a big smile and hopping to her feet, her apparent enthusiasm bringing a smile to Carl’s face.
“You came,” she said, linking arms with him unexpectedly, “I was pretty sure you were gunna bail. C’mon I need a smoke,” she leaned into him a bit and lowered her voice, “and a break from these bitches,” she said with a wink. She steered him towards the edge of the balcony, there was a little coffee tin with a bunch of cigarette butts in it sitting on a table. She leaned her back against the banister, pulling a pack of Parliament cigarettes and a zippo out of her black clutch. She tapped the box against the heel of her hand before sliding one out and offering the box to Carl. Normally, he would have passed, back in college he had been a heavy smoker, and then scaled it down to a social one and eventually quit in his senior year. Since then, he’d had a few, and enjoyed them, so he accepted and took the lighter after she’d lit hers, breathing deeply. They smoked in silence for about a minute, her looking over the party, and him looking out over the city, or at least what little view the terrace allowed, sneaking glaces up and down Alison, admiring her gorgeous figure and sharp features, today not hidden by her hair nearly as much.
“Why’d you come?” she asked suddenly, fixing Carl with her intense green eyes.
“You asked me to, I guess... should I not have?” taking a long drag, meeting her eyes as evenly as he could. He was really hoping she wanted him here, that she wanted him full stop more accurately.
“Ronnie said you were shy, she never invited you out with us so I figured you just hated parties I guess,” she trailed off, absently flicking some her ash into the coffee tin, “I’m glad you came though!” Carl was getting better at keeping up with changes of topic and mood, but he was still uneasy about her most of the time.
“Ronnie doesn’t know everything about me, in fact my personal life is pretty private. She doesn’t really ask either, why would she?” She looked at him with her head cocked a little while she took a long drag, finishing off her cigarette and exhaling forcefully.
“That girl I was sitting beside before, did you think she was cute?” Carl was in the middle of a drag and started coughing in surprise, illiciting a deep laugh from her.
“I wasn’t really paying attention,” he said once he’d recovered, “I honestly was just surprised to see you dressed so... I don’t know, normal.”
“Yeah, I know, most people that see me in my...work I guess you can call them, clothes tend to think that I always dress like a little rebel. I like feeling the sun on my skin though, and being able to shock people is always fun,” she said with a little twirl, her dress flaring out a little. She beamed a smile a struck a little pose, reminding Carl again how young she was, and his increasing desire to touch her, to feel her flawless skin and... he had to snap himself out of it with a little head shake, finishing the rest of his cigarette and disposing of the butt in the coffee tin.
“Stop hiding Allie, or at least hide me too. Why the hell did I let you talk me into coming here, these people fucking suck,” an attractive female voice behind Carl said, startling him a little. He turned to face the voice, and was greeted with a girl a few inches taller than Alison, with nearly white hair and nearly translucently pale skin. She was gorgeous, she looked like a model with pale blue eyes and perfect hair and make up, she put effort into her look, and had nearly as sharp features as Alison. She wore high-waisted jeans shorts and a white t-shirt, cropped at the front to display her flat stomach, but still covered her back and part of her sides. The way it sat on her about b-cup breasts showcased their perkiness pleasingly. “Hi, I’m Lara, really hope you’re not shit,” she said extending her delicate hand, her nails with a french coat on.
“I do my best to avoid it, no promises, I’m Carl,” he said, taking her hand. Her hand shake was firm, and her face was unsmiling, but not unkind, her hair just shorter than shoulder length, framing he already elegant face. She really did look like a model, the way she held herself oozed the kind of grace you get from years of practice.
“He’s Ronnie’s assistant, you see why she locks him away?” Alison said, wrapping her arm around Lara’s waist, and she put her arm around Alison’s shoulders, they were either quite close or quite drunk from the comfort they looked like they had with each other.
“Oh he’s gorgeous, I’d locked him up too if I had the chance,” Lara said with a soft smile, “and I see why you were hiding him away from everyone too, learn to share darling.” Carl was a little uncomfortable, nervously rubbing his hands together before putting them in his pockets, he wasn’t sure he was supposed to say something or not.
“Shit,” Alison said checking the watch on Lara’s arm that was still wrapped around her, “it is way later than I thought, I’ve got somewhere I gotta be.” She disentangled herself from her friend, pausing to smooth her dress, and then reaching into her clutch and grabbing a business card. “Here, text me tomorrow, we’ll go for brunch or some shit,” she said handing it to Carl, before turning to Lara and giving her a kiss on the cheek, and whispering something in her ear.
She waved to both of them as she hopped off, Carl standing there a little confused how this had happened, but at least he got Alison’s number, so even if Lara ended up being boring it wasn’t a total loss. He slipped her card into his wallet and looked back up at Lara to see her step towards him.
“Allie never invites people to parties except me. She’s not your dealer is she? You don’t look the type,” she was inches away from him at this point, she’d drifted closer without him noticing it to much. Carl had his back to the balcony still, and she seemed to know he had no way to go.
“No we uh...we just met yesterday,” he said sounding unsure, what was it with these girls he kept meeting that were so...terrifying. Maybe he was just out of place, not used to being older than the women he hit on.
“Wow, and she trusts you enough to let you meet her friends? You must be somethin’ special darling,” she said in an even tone, it was a little disconcerting that she seemed to always speak monotone. She rested a hand on his chest, and leaned into him, making his heart pound. He was less enthralled by Lara, compared to Alison, but there was no denying she was stunningly beautiful, and clearly interested, or at least very good at leading him on.
“She hasn’t found that out yet,” he said, pausing for effect before putting both hands firmly on her waist, “you could though.” He sounded a lot more confidant than he felt, he was only half sure she wasn’t going to try and push him over the balcony, her face unreadable and gaze steady. She hesitated for a bit before leaning into him further and kissing him lightly on the lips, tasting of strawberry. As they kissed it became more desperate quickly, Carl pulled her into until they were pressed together, their tongues dancing constantly, the arm she had on his chest had been wrapped around his neck, pulling him in. After about two minutes of making out, she pushed off him lightly, running her hand down his body until she reached his hands, now both sitting on her ass, pulling her closer. She slid her hand into his and turned around, pulling him with her back towards the entrance into the building, Carl followed wordlessly in a bit of a daze still. He wasn’t sure where this was leading, but he knew he wanted to taste her again and more, to break that monotone and make her scream.
They took the elevator two floors up, having to open the door again manually as they got caught up in each others mouths again. They reached a door and she pulled a key out of her front pocket, unlocking one of the apartments. She pushed the door open with her back, pulling Carl both into the room and into her arms as he kicked the door shut. They disentangled themselves as she moved back to the door to lock it, giving Carl a chance to check her out, admiring her fit ass, perfectly smooth and long legs... how he ended up this situation was still a mystery to him, he was only moderately attractive and not particularly charming, what had possessed this beautiful woman to decide this was how she wanted to spend her time? He was doing his best to ignore all the horribly negative thoughts bursting through his mind and enjoy the moment, as she had spun around and was pushing him lightly backwards until he tripped and fell onto the couch that was apparently behind him.
“Let’s find out if you really are that special darling,” she said, her gaze still unblinking and even, although the beginnings of a smile was touching those delicious lips. She straddled him, pulling his lips into hers, and grinding against his crotch eliciting an involuntary moan as he slipped his hands under her shirt and ran his hands up and down her smooth back. They kept making out, Carl was at this point rock hard and desperate to be inside her, but he was pretty sure he wasn’t in control of situation, thankfully it wasn’t too much longer before she slipped her hands downwards, and undid his belt and 5 button jeans. She stopped kissing him and slid backwards onto the floor, thankfully for her it was carpet, and pulled his pants and briefs down to his ankles, his 8 inch cock popping out, nearly hitting her in the face.
She giggled as he moaned and shivered when she suddenly took his dick in her mouth, the feeling surreal. She wasted no time doing her best to deep throat his girthy member, attacking his dick with constant pleasure, he was on cloud nine trying to hold back from coming. He looked down, her mouth constantly going up and down his dick in rhythm with her right hand, her left trailing down to her own crotch. She was lightly moaning, and while Carl couldn’t see, he guessed she was fingering herself. Her pace was constantly changing and he couldn’t resist the desire to run his hands through her soft hair, he’d had a girlfriend in college that told him girls hated it but he was feeling selfish, and she didn’t seem to mind as she maintained eye contact with those soft blue eyes.
He had been doing his best to not come instantly, but about 5 minutes into her oral assault he didn’t think he could handle much more, not that he was worried, he had discovered at an earlier age that he could cum and stay hard, much to the delight of his lovers.
“Fuck...fuck I’m gunna cum, I’m gunna...” he tried to give her as much warning as he could, but she just kept up sucking and stroking his dick, and kept staring into his eyes with her eyes, as if giving him permission. It didn’t take much long before he put his hand on the back of head and pushed gently as he stated exploding into her mouth, her response was to take his dick as deep as she could into her throat and hold it there while he came what felt like buckets. She took it all, slurping it all down, the swallowing motions she was making felt so good they hurt on his hyper sensitive dick. She had kept eye contact the whole time, and that wasn’t changing as she slowly moved her mouth up to the tip, before giggling on it when Carl couldn’t suppress a moan.
“You really are special, that’s one fantastic dick,” she said, her voice still monotone but she was smiling broadly, still holding his member stroking it slowly.
“Jesus fucking Christ,” Carl said when he could finally form words, “that was amazing...”
“I know, we’re finding out if you’re special, I already know I am,” she said with a wink, as she sped up her stroking, “ready?” Carl responded by pulling her to him, apparently at some point she’d removed her shorts and was naked from the waist down, so as she slid up his body to meet his lips with a kiss, her pussy ran over his cock, causing them both to shiver. He was desperate to make this girl moan, if she was even capable of it. She held his cock straight up and mounted it, slowly letting his throbbing member slide into her well lubricated pussy. She kept eye contact with him the whole way down, both of them moaning gently as his girth filled her up, it was a divine feeling for both of them. He was still sensitive from cuming so recently, but he knew that round two for him would last quite a bit longer, well he was reasonably confident, she had the tightest pussy he’d felt since high school.
He pulled her in for a kiss, desperate to distract himself from the constant squeezing of her pussy trying to milk his hard cock. He let her have control on how fast they were fucking, even inside of her he was pretty sure she was still in control, she had this captivating aura about her, he guessed from having nearly everyone she met fawn over her. She disentangled her tongue from him as she began to moan as she started sliding faster and faster up and down his cock, she locked her hands together behind his neck as she rolled her head back in ecstasy. Carl smiled, not that she could see it with her head back and eyes closed, he’d made her moan and she didn’t show any signs of slowing down. She had settled into a steady pace and he wasn’t sure if she sped up he’d be able to hold off cuming for too long, so he glanced around the apartment to distract his mind, but certainly not his cock. It was pretty messy, not dirty, just things lying around, and poorly decorated. Walmart art on the walls and cheap Ikea fixtures spotted the apartment, it was not really what he expected from a girl as well put together as Lara.
“Fuck me...oh god damn it fuck me harder,” Lara said between moans as she sped up her pace, Carl decided that was his queue to fuck her until he came. He grabbed her light frame and held her in place as he started to jackhammer his hips up and down, causing her light moaning to turn a little more frenzied. He kept it up for a few minutes before he decided he needed to move her if he really wanted to pound into her, and make her scream. He lifted her off his cock, causing her to giggle and ache for his girth to be back inside her, “oh baby don’t stop...please oh don’t....OH!” she exclaimed as he flipped her around so she was kneeling on the couch, her ass towards him as he stood, putting one foot on the couch he started to pound into her pussy.
She was soaking wet at this point, and he was getting very close to cumming a second time, at which point he realized that he had not thought ahead enough to wear a condom, and was quickly approaching the point where he would need one. He pounded into her, her ass shimmering every time their hips connected, she was moaning loudly and constantly at this point, calling out for him to fuck her, it was too much to take.
“I’m gunna cum again,” he said breathlessly between strokes, “where...where should I...” he said trying to form a sentence in the throes of passion.
“Oh god, uhhhhh, my mouth, fuck my mouth, fill me oh godddddddddd,” she said, as he finally slowed his pace, unable to stop himself from cumming much longer if he kept going at it. She flipped around with surprising grace and sat on the couch, leaning forward to swallow his cock whole. She skipped the slow build up she had used last time around, and instead just starting shoving his cock down her throat, fucking her face nearly as quickly as he had been fucking her pussy. Carl was so close, and he looked down to see her pale blue eyes staring up at him, willing him to cum as she continued her oral assault, it was all he could take.
He moaned loudly and let a huge load gush into eager mouth, grabbing her head and holding her steady to stop the continued, at this point, nearly painful, pleasure. She didn’t stop, allowing herself to be held steady but still licking her tongue around the head of his cock as she swallowed down as much as she could, only a little slipping out of the corner of her mouth. As he finished he could feel his legs beginning to give out, and pulled her off his dick as he spun around and collapsed onto the couch, breathing heavily. She giggled and hopped off the floor and hopped on top of him, straddling him, their juices mixing together on his stomach as she leaned down to kiss him on the cheek before straightening her arms and feeling up his chest, looking at him with a broad smile that extended all the way up into her soft eyes.
“Turns out you are special darling, I don’t think I’ve been fucked that good in years,” she said, her voice finally with some emotion in it. For a girl that came across as stoic as she did, she sure made some noise when she got going, Carl thought to himself with a smile.
“I live to please,” Carl said finally regaining the ability to form coherent words, “is this your place?”
“Nope, I lifted the key off Stevie, the host,” she said still sitting on top of Carl, “it’s fine, he won’t even notice that I came all over his sofa like 12 times, he’s an idiot, besides maybe he’ll end up drunk and forget if he had sex or not.”
“Uhhh...” Carl started, a little unsure of how to react to that information, “I figured that was the case, this doesn’t look very...you,” he said stoking her legs, “not that I really know you.”
“If you got to know me I doubt you’d have any interest in me, I’m pretty shitty,” she waved her hand to indicate the apartment, “example A. You’ve only known me for an hour and we’ve already preformed a B n’ E together, we’re off to a fantastic start!” Lara said giggling, before leaning down to kiss him lightly on the lips. “I guess we should probably head out, there’s a chance someone comes up here, I don’t know if he’s got another key. I think I can walk, besides I’ve got work in a few hours...”
Begrudgingly she slid off him, bending over to grab her panties and shorts, giving Carl a fantastic view. How the hell he ended up inside someone this devastatingly beautiful was beyond him, he felt a twinge of guilt over fucking the first friend Alison introduced him to. Doing his best to ignore that feeling and not ruin the moment, he joined her in their search for their clothing, taking their time, he enjoyed being in this girl’s space for every extra moment he could afford. In the space of a few days he’d met two women more interesting than in the last few years, although he was certain he was just a small distraction from their lives, he would take any chance to be around them.
“What is it you do for work anyway?” Carl asked as he slipped back into his jeans.
“A touch of everything, whatever pays the rent really. I tried a 9-5 right after college but I wanted to die, so I up and quit, my parents threw a fucking fit about that...,” she said looking a little sad, the first moment of real emotion he was pretty sure he’d seen from her, “Oh well they can’t stop loving me, I’m fantastic,” adding a wink at the end, pulling herself out of her moment of sadness and back to her playful, if stoic, self.
Finally redressed, Carl took one look around to make sure he hadn’t forgotten anything, and to assess the damage they had done to this apartment. He patted his pockets, and still had his stuff, the couch was effectively soaked and the room reeked of sex, he shrugged and followed Lara towards the door. He wasn’t sure if it was the post sex high, or if spending time around less law abiding people was starting to corrupt him a little, but he didn’t care about the fact they had just used some strangers apartment. They locked his door as they left, at least not wanting him to get robbed, small silver lining Carl thought, considering he probably needed to buy some new furniture.
Lara linked her arm through his as they stepped off the elevator and back towards the pool deck, not really the type of thing he thought she would do, given her general emotional unavailability, or at least that’s how she appeared. People stared, he wasn’t sure if they knew her well enough to think it odd, or if they reeked so much of sex it was obvious from across the pool, or that his companion was that eye catching. He was pretty sure it was the last one, she pulled a turquoise cigarette case out of her small shoulder purse, and pointed back towards where they had first met near the edge of the balcony. She pulled out smokes, put them both in her mouth and lit them with the Bic lighter she pulled from her bag, before handing him one of them.
“You don’t get a choice, I don’t like smoking alone,” she said, her arm still linked in his as they looked out over the party on the balcony, “sorry if I’ve been a bit...forceful, I wanted to see if Allie was right about you being fragile,” she paused the exhale. “Turns out she was wrong so far, although if you partied as hard as Allie did you’d probably break, we all do.”
“Um...she thinks I’m fragile? We hardly know each other?”
“She’s a better judge of character than most, but don’t take it personally, that girl’s a rock, honestly she wears me out sometimes. People say I’m selfish and power hungry, but Allie’s got a drive that blows almost everyone outta the water...” she trailed off and turned to look right at him, disentangling herself from his arm, much to his chagrin, “I don’t know why I’m telling you anything, I never do... Guess you really are special.”
“Hey, I didn’t ask you too? Don’t blame me, I’m just listening,” Carl said, trying to make it sound like he knew what the hell this girl was talking about. He’d barely met her, and so far she’d told him more than she normally did, according to her, they’d fucked and broke into someone’s apartment. He was just trying to keep up. He had learned in college that listening was far more important to understanding someone that his teenage boy-self though possible. Most people will fill the silence with some sort of conversation, and even just asking simple leading questions is usually a good enough way to get people to open up, even a little. Admittedly, it did take longer normally than it was with Lara, but she could have lied about everything she had said and he was pretty sure he wouldn’t be able to tell.
“If I gave you my number would you call? Or is this a one and done for you?” she asked slipping another cigarette between her lips and lighting it, she had regained her dispassionate tone and facial expression, making her again impossible to read.
“I would if you wanted me to, and while I wouldn’t like it, if you said you never wanted to see me again I’d get it too. I’m not gunna play games if that’s what you’re asking,” Carl replied accepting the cigarette case she offered him, joining her in chain smoking.
“All I know how to do is play games,” she said with a wink, “but yes, I’d want you to call me. I want you to call me,” she said locking his eyes with those haunting pale blue eyes, but it was hunger that filled her eyes, not dispassion this time.
“Here,” he said unlocking his phone and handing it to her, “put your number in.”
“Very trusting letting me have access to your phone,” she said, quickly tapping her number in, “I guess you’re probably not as paranoid as most of Allie’s...friends. I keep forgetting you don’t know her that well, don’t look so surprised, once you know her better you’ll understand.”
She handed his phone back to him and threw the butt of her smoke into the coffee tin that was serving as ashtray. She surveyed the party as she thumbed through her phone in silence, Carl didn’t have anything to add so he just enjoyed his third cigarette of the day, trying to decompress all the information he had gotten today. A guy a little older than Carl walked up to them, clearly a little drunk.
“Heyyyy Laurie, how you been baby?” he slurred, it was still comprehensible but it was quite clear he was loaded.
“It’s Lara, I’m not your baby. This is Carl, great party Steve,” she said without looking up from her phone, Carl was pretty sure he saw her roll her eyes.
“How’s it goin’ man, what a fucking weekend right? How you guys know each other?” The guy, apparently Steve, presumably the owner of the apartment they had used a little while earlier, slurred offering up his hand for handshake.
“Good to meet you, looks like it’ll be a good one I guess,” Carl wasn’t really sure he wanted to spend his time getting to know this guy, “we just met.”
“Oh man you just met, this chick is fucking cool you were missin’ out on life without ‘er, ain’t that right babe?” Steve slurred, from the look she shot at him, Carl was pretty sure she was half a second away from decapitating this guy. Instead, she schooled her expression and lit another cigarette, not saying anything and just staring him down.
“Uhhh...you live here?” Carl asked, trying to fill the awkward silence.
“Yeah man I got a sick pad a few floors up, you wanna tour sweetheart?” Steve said, clearly getting angry at being ignored by Lara.
“We’ve gotta go, goodbye Steve,” Lara said, tossing her nearly full cigarette into the coffee tin and linking her arm into Carl’s. Steve looked about ready to punch him, so Carl took Lara’s lead as she pulled him away and towards the elevator. “Told you he was a dick, fuck him,” she said leaning in and lowering her voice as they weaved through the crowded pool deck. “I do really have to go though... work or something close enough to it I guess...”
Carl wasn’t really sure at to say to that, and was pretty sure he didn’t want to know what it was exactly that qualified as “work i guess” to her, although he was betting it wasn’t strictly speaking legal. Lara and Alison has certainly changed his mind on what the stereotypical law-breaking citizen looked like. He was progressive, he knew there were lots of regular people working...well fairly regular jobs that happened to skirt the law. What took him back was the...vibrant personalities they had, it didn’t seem like they felt pressured at all by what they did, or stuck in a life they didn’t want, they seemed motivated and intelligent and....and everything he had dreamed of having. Yet it was him being shown this feeling of enjoying life like this for the first time, despite his education and stable job. He he wasn’t sure how to deal with it, and he was man enough to admit it.
They kissed a quick goodbye and said goodbye, as Lara jumped into and Uber and Carl wandered down the street towards his car, pretty unsure of how to feel about the days events, but certainly captivated by the two charming and probably quite dangerous women he’d just met.
congrats you made it do the end!! i'm writing part two but I'm bad at writing and I'm even worse at staying focused, so I can't promise you a time table for it. I hope you enjoyed it, and lemme know what you hated/liked the most!