nervous," the woman said.
The man betrayed an easy confidence, an easy attraction. They
waited for the elevator without touching.
fluorescent light of the lobby was unforgiving after the gentle
darkness of the bar. It was late; they’d said goodnight
to their colleagues.
she said. The elevator opened. Mirrors surrounded them as the
doors closed. They were alone.
touched a button. "Because?" he asked.
faced the door side by side, leaning against the elevator rail.
She knew exactly how much space separated them.
I really like you," she said. "Ever since we met last
year." She tried to pitch her voice towards a flirty nonchalance.
put his nose in her hair, whispered her name. Her fingers tightened
on the rail behind her.
like you, too," he said. "I’ve known you, I daresay.
Known you were intelligent, witty, and of course beautiful. You’ll
forgive me that last one." His voice was so warm, teasing.
she said. "Or I’ll hold it against you."
slipped her arm around his waist. It fit just right. He was thinner
than she’d expected, and it was both a shock and a relief.
Touching him now, he felt so real.
elevator dinged, and the doors opened. The man and woman separated
as if expecting to be caught. This sort of thing happened all
the time at conferences, but neither of them wanted gossip.
up for a cup of coffee?” he asked.
fell into step as they walked the empty hallway. There was a strong
current between them, electricity and magnetism. The air smelled
fresh, like ozone.
unlocked the door, held it open. A single lamp was on, its light
warm and yellow. There was his open suitcase, and his laptop on
the desk. Here was his room, and they were alone, really alone,
for the first time.
took a deep, almost fearful breath. Her eyes closed, and she raised
her hands, parted her lips, moving forward towards where she thought
took only a second to realize he’d turned away. His back
faced her; he was applying a coathanger to his jacket. "Sorry
for the mess," he said over his shoulder.
was actually going to make coffee? She let out her breath, feeling
embarrassed and a little perplexed.
turned to her, empty coathanger in hand. But she wore no jacket,
no wrap for him to hang up. She made a pretext of straightening
her dress. There was her stomach, her hips, her thighs.
please. I’ll make some coffee."
was the bed with its bleached-cotton smell, and she sat on it.
Her hands bit into the bedspread. They could already feel, already
taste the rich creamy cloth of his shirt, the peppery stubble
on his cheeks.
watched him walk away from her, carafe in hand.
silence lasted only a moment. Long enough. She wished she’d
had one more drink at the bar. That she was a little thinner or
funnier. That this didn’t mean as much as it did. She wanted
him still, wondered if she should make the first move. How delicate
this moment was, she thought. How easily the tenderness might
email exchange had been steady since they'd met: teasing, fun,
but also deep at times, also well-considered words on the mean
center of life. She had known him then.
tap ran. "Should I be nervous?" he asked from the sink.
of course you should be nervous." She spoke to his back as
he poured water into the machine, replaced the carafe to collect
it. She realized she didn’t know the color of his eyes.
There was so much about him she didn’t know.
stood to meet him.
tell you something then," he said. He took her hands in his,
kissing her fingers.
felt herself softening. She wanted this, the feeling of his mouth
on her skin.
course I’m nervous, but I mustn’t admit it,"
he said. "Lest you think less of me." His way of choosing
words was familiar. The pattern of his speech; the pattern of
stood very close now. His eyes were brown, she saw. He was very
is, I’m terrified," he said. He slipped her forefinger
into his mouth and bit, gently. She couldn’t decide whether
to laugh. She gasped, instead. It felt nice, in a way. Warm. After
a second, he released her. She began to understand what he might
want from her.
forget that I know you," she said, relaxing a little. "I
have high expectations." Her arms fit around him of their
leaned in as if for a kiss, then pulled away. Heat blossomed deep
in her belly.
you feel that?" she asked, testing him.
ran his hands down her arms. His cheek brushed hers, and he kissed
her neck. She tilted her head to expose the skin, arching her
back. There were his lips, right there, his smooth even teeth.
Her fingers threaded in his hair as he worked her from ear to
shoulder. His touch was nothing like she had imagined. She grew
warm all over, and pressed into him, no longer caring if he left
feel it, my dear," he said after a while. He spoke into her
neck, his breath in her hair. "You know I do."
smell of coffee wound through the room. They wouldn’t wake
up together, she knew. They wouldn’t breakfast together:
they each had meetings scheduled. Everything had to happen now.
kissed his mouth and nearly came. "I’ve thought of
doing this with you so many times," she said when she could
pushed him to the bed, wanting to feel his weight, his skin. Buttons
and straps caught her fingers, unfamiliar. They both smiled at
the awkwardness. He sat up to remove the shirt and undershirt.
Naked to the waist, he was pale and a little hairy. He smelled
of soap, light cologne, end-of-day sweat. She took it all in,
learning him with her hands. That took a while, and it was good.
guided her hand down, there to where she wanted to touch but was
still nervous. Oh. How hard it was, and the appreciative
noise he made. So trusting. She took down his trousers, his underwear.
Left them at his knees.
moved to pull them down, and she stopped him. “Stay there,”
she said, and he made a wonderful noise.
pubic hair was trim, as if manicured. Had he done this for her?
The dark short hair framed his penis. It was slightly curved,
smelled like skin and salt and musk. Bigger than the last guy
she’d been with.
looked up at him, approving. In her mouth it went. He was in her
gasped, gripped the bedclothes. "Oh, you dirty,
I never expected, oh sweetheart, please yes, God, already (or
maybe Almighty?) slow down, fucking just yes like that, like that."
never imagined he could talk like that. It was amazing. So she
did it like that, fast and then slow. Licked the shaft, the balls.
She did it until her eyes teared, both hands under his ass to
hold him still while she listened to the words he made.
God’s sake, yes, you whore, my dear, oh like that, oh, wait,
please, yes, wait, wait." His mouth was open, tongue touching
the back of his teeth.
pulled away, wiped her face on her arm, and stroked his penis
with one hand. It was quite a nice penis.
let me touch you," he said then, as if he’d just discovered
the ability to frame sentences. "Oh, fuck. Let me get you
off." His eyes had darkened, in shadow. His face was so frank,
open and beautiful. "Let me," he said, closing his eyes,
and she knew he meant *come*.
smiled. "In time. I want to watch your face, first,"
she said. She licked the tip of his cock, then the ridge that
was supposed to have all the nerves, like it said in the issue
of Cosmo she’d found on the plane. His hips rose,
his ass tightening against her hands.
there, then. His eyes squeezed shut, mouth moving from a grimace
to an O, chin dropping towards his chest. He came, thick and warm,
on the back of her throat. His eyes fluttered. It was a look just
held him there, milking the last of it with her hand. Then she
went to the bathroom, rinsed out her mouth. In the mirror her
hair was messy and her makeup smeared. She wore a goofy grin.
She didn’t try to fix any of it. This was what she looked
like to him. She mimed wiping the sweat off of her forehead in
the mirror, then went back to the bedroom.
poured herself a cup of coffee, sat on the edge of the bed. She
took a sip, so he wouldn’t have to taste himself. Then she
pulled off her dress, and got under the covers.
was amazing," he said, and she wished he wouldn’t try
to say anything. Not about love or God or dear or fuck. Words
weren’t enough. She took his hand, placed it on her breast.
She kissed him for a long time, then guided his face down, and
lives in Oakland, California. Her fiction is published or forthcoming
in Red Cedar Review, Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet, and Eyes
of Desire 2: A Deaf GLBT Reader.
© 2008 by Amelia Beamer