It was their second “real” date, if you didn’t count the many shared coffees and scones at Biddle’s across from the office. He didn’t. Those were encounters, conversations, quips and exchanges, each one pleasant as a warm autumn sunset but each a water bug, just skimming the surface. You could have these brushes forever and never peel away the top layer of what might be a relationship let alone approach any intimacy.
That, in his mind, could only be done at night-away from thoughts about work, the co-worker interruptions that-even if they didn’t happen were just beyond the door. For him it meant wine and small plates across town. Seemed like that worked for her too.
She was swirling her Gris and dipping a tiny wedge of toasted sourdough into a swirl of fresh hummus and green olive tapenade.
“Wine OK?” he asked.
“Think so”, she said nibbling the toast. “It’s a little too cold”.
“Just hold it in your hand. You’re hot enough to warm it in no time.”
She laughed hard for a moment, leaning back in the chair, her bright brown eyes dancing. She was beautiful, he thought just then. He had her firmly in the cute column-eyes, button nose with a spatter of freckles, loose chestnut hair framing her face-but she was beyond cute a step or too.
“Didn’t figure you to go for cheesy.”
“You never know what a girl’s going to like”, she said.
He smiled at that and looked down into his own glass-a bold, earthy Cab Franc. Indeed, he thought. It was about now, somewhere between the second and third dates, that he would begin to feel like a fraud. He knew he was never straight with women-at least not in the beginning. Which is why he figured his relationships never lasted very long. They were great for what they were-good conversations, some nice dinners, usually fair to good sex but nothing too deep or lasting. Maybe he was the water bug.
When he looked back up she was smiling at him.
“Welcome back.” she said. “Where did you go?”
“Oh, sorry”, He said. “Just thinking.”
“Uh huh…” she said, drawing it out.
He had the sensation of standing at the top of a ski slope. That moment when the lift was gone and your tips were headed down and there was no going back. The only way off the mountain was down. He opted to push off.
“I was thinking how I’d love to dress you in corduroy.”
“Corduroy?” she laughed pleasantly. “That’s a new one. I could imagine silk maybe-a man could want to dress me in the finest silks”-she gave a leering voice impression. “Or leather if you’re of that mind. I’d love to see you in leather”, she mugged sounding sibilant and fey rather than the threatening she was probably going for.
“Would they be brown?” she asked dragging the joke further. “I had a professor who would wear the same brown cords every day. Unless he had a closet full of them. And I don’t know which would be worse.”
“Definitely not brown”, he said. “And maybe a little different than what you are thinking.”
“Tell me then….”
“What I see, what I’d like to do, is take you home and actually undress you.”
“Really”, she said leaning in smiling.
“Really. Get you naked and lie you face down on my bed. Then I have these canes which I would like to use on you. They are long and whippy and leave beautiful welts.”
The smile faded a little and twisted. “That sounds like it would hurt.”
“It would, I guess. It stings, I’ll give you that. Burns in spots. When applied correctly a stroke could even feel like a shock-a hot buzz. What’s key though is that I cover your whole bottom top to…well bottom, so that when you reach back and run your fingertips over them, it would feel like…”
“Corduroy” she answered.
“Exactly”, he said. That was it! He had finished the run and pulled up at the bottom of the slope.
“And this is what I could expect if we went back to your apartment?” she asked slowly.
“That’s one of the things that could happen, sure. Remember, I said I’d love to dress you in corduroy. Not that I definitely would. Or not that I HAD to. Or not that I would tonight…necessarily. But I’d be thinking about it.”
She shifted in her seat and kept his eyes.
“I think I would love that feel on you though. Thinking about it now. After I laid these ridges across your bum I’d rub them for sure. Some oil or cream to cool them down but mostly so I could feel them with my own fingers. Or tongue.”
“Oh”, she said in a small voice.
“I’d play them like piano keys, like the frets on my old Gibson…”
“Holy shit Warren. This never came up over scones!”
His turn to smile. “Not exactly coffee talk”.
Her laugh was a quick little bark that she, embarrassed, stifled quickly.
“But see, there is something else. I’d have to make the ridges high enough-without marking you really-so that I could feel them when I entered you from behind. When you’re oiled and creamed I’d want to spread your legs and crawl up between them and slip inside so that I could feel the welts on your hot little bottom rubbing against me.”
Her cheeks flushed a pretty, soft pink. Could have been the wine. But wasn’t.
She leaned closer and lowered her voice. “I have to ask. When you are in me. From behind? What is your point of entry? Exactly.”
His chest fluttered. “Does it matter?”
“I cum better one way than the other.”
“You would tell me which, right? I wouldn’t have to guess.”
That twisted smile again. “I’d tell you.”
He noticed that she was swirling an empty glass. “Another?”
“Why not tonight?”
“You said it wouldn’t happen tonight.”
“Not necessarily tonight.”
“But it could…”
He caught the waitress’ eye and asked for the check.