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The Reading Room

Kaitlin finds herself in a compromising position
In about an hour I'd be sipping a fruity merlot and watching a glorious sunset slip below the horizon. I'd been promising myself some time away for god knows how long. Sun, sea and secluded sandy beaches; exactly what I needed. I gazed out the car window, counting down the miles at each passing road sign. The chalet was only a few miles from the nearest village, but pretty secluded apparently. So much so, it wasn't even on our map. I wasn't too bothered, if it came to it, we could always ask a local for directions.

My driver and traveling companion for the trip, was my old friend Luke Francis. To be perfectly clear, there were absolutely no romantic ties between us. None what-so-ever, not even a passing fancy. Don't get me wrong, he was very presentable and had a nice fit body, 6' 1 tall, with a faint sun tan and dark wavy hair. I smiled and gave him a side-ways look. He'd make somebody a good husband some day. Once he got his life sorted that was. Commitment wasn't his forte. Between working as a journalist and the endless revelry of sports he pursued, there was little chance of finding love. Half the time, I reckon he didn't even notice the army of female admirers, who seemed to flock around him. He was like their own, personal God.

We'd hardly see much of one another anyway over the next day or so. I glanced behind me at the heap of surf equipment crammed into the back of the vehicle. I had my own plans anyway, the pile of books I'd brought with me, and a spot of photography would keep me more than busy. The chalet was a weekend escape that belonged to our friends Caley and Brent Hooper. It was always last minute with them depending on their timetable that week. So, it could end up just being me and Luke. Either way, I was excited about exploring some place new.

Pretty soon, Luke was manoeuvring the 4x4 along a dirt track. Stray branches from over hanging trees scuffed the roof as we moved at a crawling pace. A small animal darted out in front of us, but luckily the car was barely moving, and it disappeared, unscathed, into the bush camouflage beyond. The over-spilling grass verges at either side hampered any real progress. On-coming traffic at this point would have been disastrous. I tried to conceal my disquiet by staying silent. I just hoped we'd found the correct trail, and that we would in fact have a roof over our heads for the night. Darkness wasn't far off, and I really didn't fancy slumming it in the car. As the minutes ticked by, we ventured deeper, into uncharted territory.

All of a sudden, the forest came to an end as sunlight cascaded through the car wind-screen. We had arrived. The Hooper's chalet sat perched almost on a cliff's edge looking onto a spectacular sea-scape of translucent blue. There were some other chalets, dotted along the same trail, each one painted an eye-catching colour. There seemed to be no real signs of life. I got the impression no one had been there recently. The curtains were drawn and the exterior had a look of general neglect. I'd brought along a sleeping bag and a few other bits and bobs, but nothing else. I don't know what I'd expected really. Right now, I was just anxious to get inside.

Luke went to fetch our stuff, from the back of the 4x4, while I checked for a key. Caley said there was one beneath a flower pot right next to the front door. I lent down and shuffled the earthen-ware pot to one side. Sure enough, there it was. I turned the key in the lock and pushed open the rickety old door. Moments later I was stood in the lounge, it looked to be comfortable enough if a little basic. There were two bedrooms and a galley kitchen, just off the lounge, and a small w/c at the back.

“Whew, here's your bags... How long you staying for, did you say? asked Luke.

I turned to face him and laughed. “Just til Sunday, why? Did I bring too much stuff?”

He grimaced, before drawing back the curtains, “I should have known really, you never travel light.”

I shrugged and made for one of the bedrooms. It was stuffy, so I threw open a window, to let some air in. The entire place smelled musty, and reminded me of a past time. Everything seemed to be in miniature, dating back to the 1970s. A revamp wouldn't go amiss. A healthy budget and a little imagination was called for. It wasn't as if the Hooper's were cash strapped. I supposed it was a time thing. It served the purpose though; their retreat away from it all.

“So, does Madam require room service?” enquired Luke.

I chuckled wondering if he'd rung up for a take-away. Then I remembered there was no mobile signal here, or any land-line telephone for that matter.

“A bottle of your finest merlot, and a cheese toastie,” I said expectantly.

“Coming right up,” he said turning towards the kitchen.

We'd only brought enough supplies for a light supper and a simple breakfast. I guessed the light supper was on it's way.

A short time later......

The sky had turned a coppery amber, as we sat outside on the veranda, and the sun was just a hazy glow in the distance.

“Do you think Caley and Brent will turn up?” I said without looking away from the picturesque scene.

Luke glanced at his watch. “It's 9:00pm already, a bit late for them now, I reckon.”

At least they'd stocked up the cupboards, and hadn't forgotten the wine rack, which pleased me. I took a sip of the merlot and watched Luke drink his lager. There was one thing, in all the years we'd been friends he'd never tried to come onto me, not even once. Of course he'd kissed me on birthdays, and at Christmas, as a matter of ritual. I'd lost track of which woman he'd been seeing at the time though. I laughed, wasn't it strange, I'd never even been the least bit interested in his personal life. I was a shoulder to cry on when it all went tits up, as it very often did. He was hard to pin down was Luke.

As we sat there, the temperature was dropping, and the last of the evening sun faded into nothing. The glow of a lantern lit up the area around us. I sensed a kind of sadness hanging on Luke, it made me want to reach out and hug him. Under normal circumstanced I probably would have. I wished the Hooper's were here. Brent was so gregarious you couldn't help but laugh at his outrageous one-liners.

“Are you okay?” I eventually asked.

“Sure, I was probably just thinking too deeply,” he said. “Sorry if I'm not much company tonight.”

“That's okay, I don't feel like talking anyway,” I said with a wink.

The sea air was making me feel slightly drowsy. I was always the same when I visited the coast, and the wine wouldn't have helped any.

“Bed-time for you, I think,” he said, noting my heavy eye lids.

I nodded and rose from the chair. There would be another night to sit chatting, and to watch one more glorious sunset.

“I'm off for a quick shower, before turning in,” I said.

“Okay, see you in the morning.”

I leant down and pecked him on the cheek, “Yeah, see you in the morning.”

I returned to the room and dug out my wash bag. The chalet seemed to be well enough kept, everything was spotlessly clean. I wouldn't have expected anything less mind you, the Hooper's were a fussy pair.

Ten minutes later, my body reinvigorated, I felt more awake than I had done all day. I stepped from the wash closet, to find Luke sitting in the lounge sipping a glass of port and smoking one of Brent's cigars.

“Make yourself at home, why don't you?” I said with a scolding look.

“Sorry Mistress, did I need your permission?” he quipped, then blew a smoke ring.

I observed him for a moment, “Probably not, I'm sure Brent won't mind.”

“Good, I wouldn't want to get blacklisted... I love it when you're so damned bossy, by the way.”

I threw him a look and returned to the bedroom. I quickly pulled on a pair of pyjamas and delved into my bag, for a dressing gown.

“Why not come and join me for ten minutes?” Luke called from the lounge.

“Okay, give me a minute,” I said.

What harm could it do anyhow? The clock on the dresser said 10:10pm, it was still early. When I came back into the lounge, Luke had poured me a glass of port.

“Mmm, trying to get me drunk, Mister?” I said with a smirk.

“Er, no...” he said. “Just want to spend some time with my favourite dark angel.”

“Oh really, golden boy?” I said lifting the small glass from the coffee table.

He smiled and draped his arm across the back of the sofa. The tips of his fingers were just resting on my shoulder.

“So, what's on the box then?” I asked.

“Huh?”

“The telly, Friday night's usually pretty good, what about the...”

Before I could say anything else, he had planted his lips on mine. I closed my eyes and just went with it. Holy shit, I was frozen to the spot. After about a minute we finally broke free and drew breath.

“Fuck...” I said. “And there was me, I had you right up there, with Saint Peter.”

“You were asking for that,” he said, holding my gaze.

“How do you figure that out then?” I asked.

“If you walk about looking like a fucking clone of Ava Gardner, I'm powerless, sweetie,” he said.

I laughed. “Thanks, but I'm hardly on that scale.”

“Oh, you are to me,” he said, leaning closer.

I was then thinking, why fight the natural impulse? In all probability, by Monday, we'd be far too busy, or too wrapped up in life to even send a text message. And life would continue, as before.

The situation seemed completely surreal. I was outside myself, looking in, but was a much younger version of myself. He then stood up and stretched out his arm, beckoning me to follow him into the bedroom. I automatically drifted towards him without any thought of consequence.

“So, my dear KC, or would you prefer to be called Kaitlin?” he mused.

I shrugged. “Who cares, as long as you don't cast it up to me in the morning.”

“Oh my, I've waited this long, I'd never do a thing like that,” he said brushing his lips with mine.

I really wanted to scream at that point – 'WHY.'

I was angry, so very angry. Our kisses became more urgent, almost frenzied. I grabbed onto his shirt, pulling him into my body. All those years of playing the martyr had back-fired. Our mutual lust was fuelled by revenge and longing.

He slipped my robe off before grabbing my arm; throwing me onto the bed. His expression read of a man on a mission. He then stripped his shirt off, revealing a finely sculpted torso.

Anchoring my wrists to the bed he drew his mouth down one side of my neck, then moved to the other side.

“You're mine tonight, Kaitlin,” he whispered.

I couldn't speak, I swallowed hard and nodded.

“Such a sweet angel, but you're going to be very naughty for me,” he laughed.

His tongue then pushed into my mouth tasting and exploring. Letting go of my wrists, he started work on the little pearl buttons of my pyjama top, as he straddled me.

“You smell so good, I want to sample every part of you. You'd like that, wouldn't you?”

“Yes, I'd like that,” I managed to splutter.

“Good, 'cause so would I,” he said calmly.

I stared up at him, I didn't know this person. My heart thumped in my chest, as he uncovered my breasts, discarding the garment to the floor.

“Oh sweetie, this is going to be so painful for me,” he said, giving a wicked laugh.

I wasn't sure what he meant, it was pretty damn intoxicating from where I was laying. My mind was numb, yet my body tingled from top-to-toe.

“You bastard,” I said quietly.

“Aww... Been pining after me darling Kaitlin?” He said.

I didn't think I had been, but since we were both here, I supposed we should get it out of our system.

“The image of a perfect woman,” he said sweeping his hands over the curves of my breasts. “Look at me!” he said in a slightly raised voice.

Oh god, he'd startled me a little, but I held his eye. The need to have his prize was howling blue murder from his every pore.

I continued to watch, as he unbuckled his belt, his erection clearly visible as he undid his trousers, he then quickly kicked them off. Leaving his shorts on, he sat on the side of the bed.

“I want to see you completely naked, my beauty,” he said taking hold of the elastic waistband of my pyjama bottoms.

Drawing them down, his eyes never left my body, “Oh my, sweet heaven above!”

I couldn't trust myself to speak. My usual emotional state wasn't playing ball. All I wanted to do was scream, I could feel it slowly rising in my chest. Chances are no none would hear me. There was no escape unless I stole his 4x4. But I was determined he was going to fuck me, come hell or high water.

I lay there, now completely naked, apart from my lapis gemstone necklace, I seldom took it off. He smiled and sat there, stroking my hair.

“Do you know Kaitlin,” he started, “What I want most of all?”

“What?” I asked.

“I really want to see you at the height of ecstasy,” he said tenderly.

I turned to look at him, his eyes were pooled with pain, and perhaps love. I knew then he meant me no harm. But why now, I asked myself. He could have picked his moment at any time over the past decade. I'd never played hard to get. Although, we were hardly compatible as a couple. I'd most likely have ended up a notch on his bedpost just like the rest of the poor bitches he dated and ditched. Had I mistakenly assumed I'd meant more to him than that?

There was a definite undercurrent of reprisal. Were we just out to punish one another? I fixed my gaze on the ruby glow of the table lamp in the lounge, as Luke pulled me closer. I could smell cigar smoke mixed with alcohol on him, it wasn't unpleasant, in fact it was strangely provocative. His lips met mine, more gently this time.

My body responded, as his strong hands caressed and tantalized. I gave a long sigh. He moved slowly over my alabaster skin, attentively watching and listening to my demands for more. He was making me feel so nice, so good.

“Sorry for keeping you up,” he said, with a grin.

“It wasn't on the cards, but since you've started...”

I closed my eyes, feeling the heat of his body on mine. His hardness pressed against my inner thigh, gyrating so slowly. His warm mouth met my nipples, electricity pulsed through my whole being.

In the distance the sea crashed onto the cliffs. The flimsy curtains inadequate in their purpose; it was barely dark outside as moonlight flooded the sky. Our silhouettes entwined, coaxing and pleasuring one another, as we forgot the world outside.

Luke's touch became more impatient, my head swam, I was inebriated. If he'd asked me at that moment to swim in the sea with him, I would have.

“Oh this can't be true,” he whispered.

“I swear, you seduced me.”

“I'm as scared as hell,” he said with a half smile.

“Don't be,” I said.

His expression grew more peaceful, the torment in remission for the short term. I diverted my gaze from his, the fresco like effect in the bedroom soothed my racing mind. Artistic to a fault, the sweeping outlines of someone's handy work came alive. For the fist time perhaps.

“It's quite superb, isn't it?" he said.

“Tremendous, a bit like a Michael Angelo in minimal form.”

He turned back to me, “We have much catching up to do, my sweet.”

There was no perfect solution, all I could ask for that night was to be truly swept away in our fool's paradise. I was helpless, and ready to be taken.

He slipped the shorts down his legs, unleashing his throbbing member. My breathing felt strangled in my chest as he positioned himself on top of me. He took my buttocks in his hands, pulling me against him, deftly and precisely easing his shaft inside me. Soon we were moving in unison. I closed my eyes and gave a quiet moan. Our hips thrust back and forth, the gratifying pleasure forcing a series of gasps and groans that seemed to subside into a mere nothingness.

“You feel so good, my angel,” he said, in laboured breaths.

“So do you, quite something,” I said, in a haze of delirium.

Lost in the moment, we'd completely forgot about protection. I was sure Luke wouldn't put me in any danger. He did feel so natural, there was a very real difference. Trojans, rubbers, condoms, whatever you wanted to call them, they were a necessary evil. I couldn't remember the last time I'd seen one, my sex life wasn't at all risqué these days.

My chest heaved beneath him, sensing my need for release, he moved faster. Beads of perspiration coated his brow. His words had etched a picture in my mind. It did feel so good, the two of us together. From now on, we'd surely never be the same.

“Oh, oh... god, oh god, oh god...” I wailed.

Spurned on, Luke kept up the pace. I wondered what I must have looked like, as I came closer, my cheeks burned, as the electricity built between us.

“Let go, my angel,” he prompted.

I held on tight, my fingers digging into his bare flesh. My body shook as he slammed into me, again and again. I fought to keep control, but was quickly gravitating towards euphoria.

“Don't fight it,” he rasped.

As he held me, there were no boundaries and no limits. All I could hear was the waves lashing the cliffs outside. The fires raged in both of us as we played out our fantasy.

Luke was talking softly, I tried to make sense of his words as tears pricked my eyes. All of a sudden my breath caught in my throat, and my body locked-up in a mild spasmodic seizure. I fell silent, as a tide of rhapsody washed its way through me.

He smiled and kept moving against me, “Wow, beautiful, just beautiful...”

“You now, surfer boy,” I whispered.

I knew almost everything about him, and now, somehow nothing at all. When had it all changed I wonder?

“There's time enough, sweetheart,” he said laying back down beside me.

The weather had calmed outside, the distant rush of the coastal waters lulled my senses; his warm body pressed up against mine as we lay there entangled. Now it was over, I couldn't help but feel that the sex wasn't that important any more. Perhaps we weren't destined to become long term lovers. The thought of not having him as a friend made me want to cry. In reality, his silly jokes made me laugh like a hyena.

The following morning...

I was jolted awake, by a door bursting open and then voices. I sat up, glaring at the unfamiliar surroundings. Pulling my sleeping bag closer, I kept an eye on the open doorway. The lounge was still in partial darkness, the reading lamp casting a ruby glow into the bedroom. Caley and Brent walked past, gazing in as they went. I could only sit there, numbed, as Luke snored softly beside me. I didn't have the heart to rouse him. A few seconds later Caley doubled back, and stood there open mouthed, observing the two of us together.

“Morning,” I said, my gaze fixed on hers.

She gave a nervous laugh. “Good morning Kaitlin, didn't you get my message?”

“Message?” I said vacantly.

As she stood there with Brent two paces behind her, Luke woke from his deep slumber.

“Caley, Brent...” he said, in bewilderment.

“Don't any of the two of you check your cell phones?” Brent asked.

“No point, can't get a signal way out here,” Luke replied.

“Oh, but we have a brand new telecom mast and cable television system now,” Caley said with delight.

“Ah, I did wonder what all the sockets were for,” I said.

Caley gave a wry smile and eased the door shut. Meanwhile Luke searched for his phone, impatient to retrieve the archived messages.

“Right then... One missed call from Caley Hooper - Fri 20:00, message from Caley Hooper - Fri 20:05 - Delayed til Saturday, phone signal & cable T.V active. See you soon, enjoy!”

“Huh, if I didn't know any better, I'd say Caley and Brent planned this whole damn thing,” I said, furiously.

“It sure as hell looks like it, sweetheart,” Luke said, with a grin.

I knew all along I should have locked the door. But, we were both smiling. I'd probably hide behind a pair of dark sunglasses for the rest of the weekend now. I think I'd had enough excitement for the time being.

The End
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