“It’s John Anderson! IT’S JOHN BLEEDING ANDERSON!” my mind crowed while my stomach turned cart wheels. The mad woman was running round inside my head again and I prayed that she’d keep her damned voice down before he heard.
John’s arm was round my waist and his hand was resting lightly on my hip.
I glanced round the table in the social club that my school friends and I were sitting at and and breathed easier. Nobody was staring aghast at me so I guessed that my internal-idiot hadn’t given the game away after all. Well, not yet.
Sipping the vodka and Coke John had got me from the bar I tried to act casually by asking Sophie about her plans for next weekend. That was what she’d been talking about, wasn’t it? It was hard to concentrate when I was so acutely aware of the arm hooked round me.
A warm glow washed through me at the mere thought.
Until last week when he’d asked if I was going to tonight’s concert I didn’t think he really realised I existed and now I was sitting pressed against him and feeling awfully aroused. We had some classes together but never seemed to get passed exchanging hellos or the very briefest of small talk and now the guy I had fancied for the last three terms was gently squeezing my butt as he talked casually with his friends, who were sitting at the other end of the table.
The frantic pacing of that bloody woman in my cranium picked up once more as she started stalking around again, working herself back up into a lather. Treacherous bitch! This was John Anderson, so what the hell was she trying to do?
There were plenty of Jamies, Craigs and Davids at school but surnames were reserved for a select few and John was one of the group the rest of school held in high esteem. Anyone outside his circle of friends always seemed to use his surname when they talked about him and I liked to think it was in deference to his popularity and looks. My mind fought to comprehend the fact that he’d singled me out.
It wasn’t that I was unworthy of attention or unattractive but this was something that I was almost obstinately unaware of at 18. I was a tall slim girl of 5’6” with fine, shoulder length blonde hair, blue eyes and a runner’s physique. I’d a pretty face although I wasn’t close to being in the same league as the likes of Donna Simpson or Jessica Andrews. I found I could live with my breasts even if I did feel a little short changed at times and given how self-critical I was this amounted to high praise. My favourite feature was definitely my butt; I was pretty proud of it. If it hadn’t been for my painful lack of self confidence I would have been a happy girl.
Gradually I became aware of the pregnant pause in Sophie’s monologue and that she was looking expectantly at me. I re-ran what I could remember of the conversation and blurted, “Four o’clock at yours would be fine”, hoping it was the right response. Seemingly it was and Sophie continued to prattle away happily at me.
Katherine found me slouched at my desk in the little study room that adjoined the school library. My notepad lay open on my knee and my history books were neatly laid out on the desk around me but there was no danger of my looking at them today.
“What happened?” Katherine asked, not even through the door.
There was no need for any kind of preamble but I looked blankly at her, unwilling to reply. I’d liked John for so long and, despite my bleak outlook on life and my firm belief nobody really nice could ever like me, I’d allowed myself to believe that Friday evening had marked a turning point.
“Sam!” she insisted, “What happened? It was going so well.”
She was right, it had been and that’s what was so upsetting about the whole business. I’d really blown it.
Gripping my arm as she eased into the chair beside mine she implored, “Come on! Tell me what happened?”
The concern in her voice was touching and I knew I needed to talk.
“I fucked up”, I replied, my voice barely above a whisper.
“How?” she implored.
“I just did”, I answered petulantly.
I wanted her to have to work to get me to spill my guts. Since Friday I felt the world didn’t care and I wanted some kind of sign that there were exceptions to this. I was consciously aware that I was attempting to manipulate her and, if anything, that made me feel worse. Regardless of this I still wanted her to have to pump me for the detail.
“I just did”, I said whining, head down and sounding younger and more immature by the second.
On Friday Katherine had joined us in the social club at about half nine and by that point John and I had shrugged off enough of our teenage angst to be able to risk talking to each other. Until then we’d sat awkwardly together exchanging faltering small talk until he’d summoned the nerve to put his arm around me. That had made me rejoice, of course, and when Katherine sauntered in he was sitting there with his arm circled about me. Seeing this made her eyes twinkle and a smile briefly danced across her mouth. I, on the other hand, had had to force myself to fight down the broad grin that threatened to burst onto my face.
I’d only known Katherine for a few months and, despite this, counted her among my closest friends. As you may have gathered, I was a painfully shy eighteen year old but that was a big improvement on how I’d been when we’d first got to know each other.
She was pretty well the complete opposite of me being confident, gregarious and very popular. Almost everyone in our year group, and those on either side of ours, knew and liked Katherine. On top of this enviable package she was also gorgeous, which resulted in an almost comic line of boys trailing her through the school corridors.
When we started our final year we found we had study time together and had gotten to know each other very well over the ensuing weeks and months. She liked me but, to be fair, at first I think she’d seen me as a bit of a project. Despite finding this slightly shaming I’m glad she did because I gradually began to open up and realised how fun and liberating sharing could be. This was something I’d never done and before long I found myself talking to her about every subject under the sun and boys in particular.
Pure and simply- this freed me. I had all the usual thoughts and feelings anyone my age had but until then I’d kept my mouth firmly shut because I was terrified that all my trivial little secrets would slip out and I’d become a laughing stock.
“But you went outside with him!”
She was right and she’d also had a part to play in that. After getting a drink she’d come across to the table and sat down with Sophie and me. I was really pleased because this provided me with needed moral support.
We sat and talked for what seemed like an eternity because of my thrilling but slightly scary proximity to John. Katherine had also kept Sophie entertained, which I was thankful for because that allowed me to keep my contributions to the conversation to monosyllables without being clocked by Sophie- I didn’t want her to realise how pleasantly off-balance I was. I didn’t want her nervous excitement to make me worse.
When Sophie went to the bar Katherine flashed her eyes at me and peered meaningfully at my hand and then John’s knee. I knew exactly what she meant but my nervous excitement made me act all innocent and confused.
“Put - your - hand - on - his - knee!” she’d hissed at me all staccato , leaning close so nobody would hear, fun sparkling in her eyes.
I put up a pretty transparent show of reluctance before placing my trembling little hand on his leg. He’d been talking to his pals the whole time but at this he turned and glanced down at my hand. I’d blushed feeling I’d over-stepped a line. Being a naive eighteen year old I’d not realised how wide of the mark that assumption was!
My thoughts returning to the present I muttered, plaintively, “I know”, and again, “I knoooow!”
Katherine leaned in to me, reassuringly squeezing my shoulder. “Come on!”, she said, her voice barely above a whisper.
The dam broke and tears welled up in my eyes. A torrent of words and pent up feeling burst from me and, despite my sobs, I was relieved to be telling her and to be free of the emotion I’d choked back over the weekend.
John had indeed asked me to ‘go outside’ with him. I don’t know, if this was the same in your school but in ours it was a pretty direct invitation to go somewhere quiet to snog. I’d known it was coming but was still surprised by the way my body came alive- the way my heart beat faster, the blood rushed in my ears and the world seemed to have been cleansed as if the first layer had been removed from the surface of everything.
Sophie’s jaw hung open in mild bewilderment as John lead me by the hand from the table towards the door. I must have looked slightly stunned myself but despite being hugely self critical I was able to overlook this little lapse. It was only fair, wasn’t it? John Anderson was taking me outside and that woman’s celebrations in my head had already reached and passed fever pitch. In light of these facts it was a minor miracle that I managed to pull off ‘slightly surprised’.
“Sam...?” Katherine enquired gently, holding my hands in hers.
I must have stopped talking and was only now aware that I was vacantly staring into my lap, shoulders heaving as the last of my sobs subsided.
My red rimmed eyes looked up into Katherine’s steady sea-green ones. “We... we went outside to... to the car park”, I gasped between sniffles. I was such a drama queen! “He took me round the side by the river and we sat on the wall. He was so nice...”
It was uncanny how well Katherine knew me because she let me continue at my own pace knowing that now I’d started I was going to keep going.
“He told me he liked me... and kissed my cheek”, I said pointing in case she didn’t know what a cheek was. Pathetically I was unaware that I kept stroking the point where he kissed me as I went on.
“He was really nice and... I fucked it up”.
“Fucked it up?” she echoed when I let the words hang.
Massaging my palms, “You fucked it up,” she repeated. “How?”
Half blubbering, “I couldn’t kiss him! I said sorry and... and went back inside”
A look of confusion briefly washed over Katherine’s features and I knew she didn’t understand. She wouldn’t, how could she? While Katherine knew me this was way out of her frame of reference.
Continuing, “I didn’t know how to kiss him”.
This was met with a blank look of confusion and I realised I was going to have to spell it out to her.
“You know I’ve never kissed anyone, right?” The blank look was evidence that she didn’t know.
“No one.” As embarrassing as this was I enjoyed that I was having to explain something to her- it was usually the other way around and I took some satisfaction in even this little ‘victory’.
I’d shared a lot with her but never told her that I’d never kissed anyone before. She’d assumed that I was shy and hadn’t kissed many guys and I’d never set the record straight because I liked being able to share a common experience- it made me feel closer to her and what she represented to me.
Half smiling, “But nothing. I’ve never kissed anyone”. My confidence was growing and I was on a roll, “You kind of assumed I did but I haven’t. I just didn’t know what to do and I just wanted away from him! I didn’t want to...”, I paused momentarily collecting my thoughts, “I didn’t want him to know that and I sure as hell didn’t want to do something stupid”.
Her eyes smiled and nearly provoked a torrent of profanity before she explained, “I’ll show you.”
In spite of myself I nearly laughed but something in her tone stopped me and I didn’t know why.
“What are friends for?” she said, a quiet smile spreading across her face.
The next few days stretched into weeks and I gradually came to realise that the world didn’t revolve around me. Jilting John Anderson wasn’t the talk of the school after all and nobody seemed to realise why I’d bailed on him. At first I was relieved and then a little miffed that our almost-liaison hadn’t catapulted me into the school’s Hall of Fame. Today it makes me shake my head thinking back to what I was like then- I don’t like getting older but I feel I’ve come a long way since then.
Sophie had seen me when I came back into the social club followed a few moments later by John and had realised that something wasn’t right. I was almost eternally grateful that she didn’t ask me about it either then or when we were back at school. There were times I wished she could have been more like Katherine and talked to me about personal stuff but those couple of weeks weren’t one of them and I was thankful for her slightly prudish nature.
Katherine, on the other hand, had no such qualms and straight out asked me how I’d managed to get to 18 without having kissed anyone. My flimsy, and slightly cruel, attempt to divert her by pointing out that I wasn’t a slut didn’t have the desired affect and I eventually confessed it was just that I was really shy and didn’t think anyone would want to kiss me. Apparently this was hysterical and after recovering from fits of laughter she went on to enlighten me about the major part hormones played in the lives of teenaged boys. This was news to me and despite her making some pretty broad generalizations she displayed a level of understanding way beyond her years.
One dull Wednesday morning we found ourselves sitting in the study room with me trying to explain to her for the umpteenth time that the problem wasn’t, thanks to my recently acquired understanding of teenaged boys, a lack of willing candidates but that I was scared my kissing wouldn’t be up to scratch and I’d be this dreaded laughing stock. Katherine’s natural self confidence was preventing her from understanding me.
Half irritated and half joking I said, “I - don’t - know - how - to - kiss! I - don’t - know - how - to - do - it!” I prodded her arm with each word for emphasis.
Then it struck me.
Until now I hadn’t consciously thought about her offer to ‘show me’ how to kiss. Anyway, I’d never really known what she meant by that. I gave her more credit than my classless brother and his idiot friends, who ran kissing-drills on the circles they created with their thumbs and forefingers, but I still wasn’t sure what she meant and whether it was a serious offer.
The mad woman who had been loose the night John and I hadn’t kissed could change roles at the drop of a hat and when she wasn’t sabotaging me she was censoring me. But not today. This came out the blue and popped into my conscious mind before she had a chance to shut down the motors running my mouth. Before either of us knew it the question was out there.
“You... you said, you’d show me how to kiss”, I faltered. “Would you?”
As soon as it was passed my lips my darling censor followed it with a torrent of abuse that would have made any drill sergeant proud. The self-congratulatory pause in her tirade allowed me to forgo the normal rush of self-loathing and focus on the lurch I felt in my stomach as I asked myself what the hell I’d done.
The momentary lag before the self hatred kicked in allowed me to keep looking at Katherine rather than my usual want, which is to stare at the floor in shame.
I couldn’t really figure out what was happening.
I expected her to be embarrassed or laugh at me. Something was going to tell me her offer had been tongue-in-cheek. That wasn’t happening and my mind began to try and figure out what the more serious possibilities were.
Shit, this was going to be bad.
The rubber feet of Katherine’s chair squeaked on the tiled floor as she angled it towards me.
Neither the voice in my head nor I knew what to make of this. It looked- friendly? No, not ‘friendly’ but...
We waited with baited breath.
Whatever it was Katherine was now looking serious. It was a ‘good’ serious though. Maybe ‘intent’ would be a better word.
Then it dawned on me- I was about to get kissed.
Years later I was so glad it happened this way. By all accounts realizing you’re lesbian is a pretty tricky thing to go through- the soul searching, wondering who is and who isn’t and coming out to name but a few. Being as self conscious as I was I think it would have been a nightmarish experience for me and one I would have been spectacularly bad at but I didn’t even get time to think about it. I suppose I knew I thought some girls were pretty but I thought it was an academic kind of knowledge- most guys would know George Clooney is handsome, right? I’d never even felt attracted to girls.
Katherine slipped forward to sit on the edge of her chair, her hands came up and were on my face, in my hair, her head tilted to the side and as she leaned forward her lips parted ever so slightly.
Next second her lips were on mine. It was very soft, as if they barely touched. It was kind of like the little pecks you might give your family but the contact was way too long for that. Her eyes swam back into focus as she pulled her face away from mine and held my gaze, studying my reaction. She was pretty. I liked it.
Her face was still very close and, instinctively, I knew it was going to happen again.
I angled my head without thinking and our lips pursed as they met. After each gentle, little kiss she momentarily pulled back before coming in again to give me the loveliest of little pecks. I was acutely aware of the gentle swell of her bowed lips and the delicious way that they gave under the pressure from mine.
My heart was thundering in my chest now and I felt almost dizzy as the blood coursed through my veins. My breathing was labored and I realized that it was because I had been breathing very shallowly ever since I’d asked Katherine to show me how to kiss. At times I think I’d gone as far as to have held my breath in anticipation of what was to come.
I was sitting very still in my chair and it would have seemed stiff and formal to me, if I’d been self aware enough to have noticed. My hands lay uselessly, as if paralyzed, in my lap. All I knew was that I wanted this to happen and didn’t want her to stop.
Katherine moved in her chair and her knees made their way to either side of mine allowing her to move closer. One hand delicately pushed its way through my hair to the nape of my neck, drawing me lightly towards her. I was barely aware of her other hand dropping to my shoulder to tenderly squeeze and caress my arm.
Her movements seemed almost feline they were so seamless and natural- I never stopped to question the fact that I was kissing another girl. It was simply right.
Her jaw slanted upwards and her bottom lip touched mine. Her lips were parted but didn’t close. She did it again- stroking her lower lip along the sensitive skin beneath mine- sending delectable little shivers cascading down my back, exploring my face with her mouth.
She ran her lip up to mine again and this time her voluptuously soft lips closed over my lower one. Till now my eyes had been wide open to drink in as much of this experience as possible and now they closed without my bidding as she sandwiched my lip between hers, released and captured it again.
It was indescribably soft, sensual and highly erotic. Although barely conscious of it at the time it felt like there were metal bands underneath the skin of my arms and it was as if they were being gradually tightened as I became more and more aroused.
I could feel her soft, sweet breath in my mouth as we kissed again. All of a sudden I knew how to kiss and without realizing I found my lips parting and softly pulling and sucking her lips between mine. This was the first time that I’d felt the gorgeous moisture from another person in any form and I delighted at the feeling of her wet little mouth and lips.
After what could have been mere seconds or equally minutes Katherine leaned back, dropping her hands to my forearms, and looked at me. Wordlessly I looked back into what I would later learn were wide open, dilated, pupils. She was as aroused as I was but at the time I didn’t realise this, misguidedly, thinking that I was the only one turned on by the experience and falsely assuming that Katherine was taking the ‘lesson’ in her stride.
Evidently she was happy with what she saw and a strange little smile danced across the corners of her mouth and lit up her eyes. She leant back in to me and our mouths sought each other out, bumping, kissing and sucking.
As she turned her head to the side I became aware of a warm, soft sensation in the corner of my mouth. Katherine opened her mouth wider and at first I thought she meant to gently bite my lip but instead she snaked her tongue out again and beautifully, obscenely, licked her way along my upper lip from one corner of my mouth to the other.
The warm glow that had been present in my abdomen began spreading much more rapidly and I became conscious of the fact that the warmth building between my legs had become a wetness that was soaking my knickers.
At the unexpected sensations my eyes had remained open to delight and marvel at what Katherine was doing to me. She paused momentarily to search my face for my response and seeing the arousal etched across my features she angled her head again and ran her tongue across my bottom lip while gently probing inside to let it dart across the yet softer skin of my inner lips.
Until this point all of Katherine’s movements had been exquisitely slow and sensual before, all of a sudden, she seemed to be possessed of a different intent and her nose pushed firmly into my cheek, her mouth opened and locked with mine creating a thrilling seal.
My eyes closed of their own volition as Katherine’s tongue snaked between my lips and into my mouth and my tongue, without my bidding, was drawn towards hers. If I had thought the feeling of our lips moving and pressing together had been soft and sensual then I was to realise that I had experienced nothing yet.
The tip of her tongue found mine and wound itself in slow little circles around it while mine danced around hers as if trying to hook it. Unbeknownst to me my hands had come to life and were pulling me and my trembling body towards her. Katherine responded in turn by reaching her hands around my back and drawing me forward on my chair so that our shoulders and breasts were pressed together as we kissed.
We briefly broke for breath before our lips parted, our mouths opened and reformed their beautiful, sensual bond. A distant and detached part of my brain puzzled over words to describe the silky softness of Katherine’s tongue and mouth. The best it could manage under the conditions was ‘silk’ but that was so far away from adequately describing something so soft, wet, erotic and above all personal.
This was the most beautiful moment of my adult life and I found my emotions and senses were being overrun by the bewitching flood of experience.
All too soon I found Katherine relax her clasp and lean back. Her lips were wet with our saliva and her cheeks were flushed with excitement and arousal. An impish smile made its way onto her face as she said, “That’s what friends are for”.
I didn’t know it then but that was only the beginning.
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with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.
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