She’d decided not to go out on Friday night. She’d only asked him out as she thought that was the type of place that a man like that would want to go. She didn’t like bars. She didn’t like going out at all. She liked being at home, in a comfortable, warm and empty bed.
She was on the train when the text notification sound chirped from her bag. She dug around and pulled the phone out thinking it was work.
Hi Belinda, sorry, it’s been a crazy week. Can I take you on a picnic in the park tomorrow? Josh.
Nice! Central Park? I’m going to be at work in town until midday, so we could meet? Bee
She was so surprised that he’d actually texted that she’d replied without thinking. Nice?? What was she thinking? And she’d used the nickname that her Father called her by.
Aren’t you out, at that Bar? I’m sorry that I couldn’t join you.
He was sorry that he’d said no to her invitation? That made her heart leap in her chest.
No, didn’t go. On train heading home, warm bed calling me. She sent the text and wondered if that made her sound to homey and not sexy.
She looked at his text. Was he saying that he was sorry that he wasn’t joining her in her warm bed. She felt her cheeks blush.
Sorry that I’m not spending time with you. Text cut off while typing. Josh.
She laughed, a nervous laugh of relief or regret, she wasn’t sure which. Even though he wasn’t wanting to join her tonight, he still wanted to spend time with her. This made her feel warm all over. They shared a couple more texts settling on the place and the time before he signed off. She felt her sixteen-year-old inner self raise its head and want to text him just once more to keep the conversation going but she contained herself. She would see him tomorrow.
When she finally got home she had a quick dinner, worked for a couple of hours then went to bed. She usually spent the whole day on Saturday in the office. There was much to do to prove her worth to the company. She needed to make sure she would have enough done before she skipped out to meet him. She closed her eyes to sleep but instead she saw him and all the things she wanted him to do to her.
The night had been long, and she was tired. It was 4am when she gave up trying to get him out of her head and sleep. She pulled on a work outfit, left home in the dark and caught the 5:06am train. Then walked into the office just before 7am. She set an alarm on her phone and started on the report she was working on. Without the alarm she knew that there was a good chance she would work through and stand him up. There was no way she wanted to do that, so she took the precaution.
He was there early. He wore jeans, a loose sweat shirt, a sports coat and a cap. He kept his eyes downward making sure the peak of the cap shielded him from view. He had a backpack with the picnic he’d brought and a rug. He’d scouted out the place he wanted to take her and now he just had to wait for her. She was late. Five minutes late. Maybe she didn’t recognise him? Maybe she’d gone to the wrong gate? Maybe she wasn’t coming.
“Josh?” she was running in the same shoes she’d worn to the party.
She was wearing a suit, navy pencil skirt that came down to her knees, collared cotton shirt, business jacket and the black wool coat he recognised. She took her breath away as she ran towards him. She was just as beautiful as he remembered her. She wore next to no makeup, her cheeks were naturally blushed from running, and her hair glinted its caramel colour in the sunlight. He wanted to strip off that masculine stuffy tailored suit and drape her in soft fabric again, preferably his sheets.
“I’m sorry I was late,” she breathed as she reached him, “I got a call just as I was about to leave.”
“Fine,” his harsh voice wasn’t co-operating.
“Oh,” her eyes widened as she took in his jeans and casual coat, “I’m dressed inappropriately for a picnic. I didn’t even think.”
He wanted to reassure her but that wasn’t going to happen. He’d done his vocal exercises this morning, but it wasn’t behaving. He had a show tonight so the less he used his voice, the better. That, and there were too many people milling. He needed to disappear.
He linked his hand with hers, looked her in the eyes and jutted his head towards the greenery. She was still looking disappointed or unsure, but she took his hand and followed him. He avoided the main avenues and took the less popular paths. It was just as well she didn’t wear stilettos as they wouldn’t have coped where he was taking her.
He stopped on the grassy bank. It was away from everything with big deciduous trees which were trying hard to block out the city with their naked branches. The day was sunny, cold but clear blue skies, so he pulled the rug from his pack and spread it out. Then he pulled out his pad of paper and pen.
Is this OK? You look great. I’m happy you made it. He scribbled the words.
“It’s beautiful,” she was looking up into the trees. “It’s hard to believe somewhere so beautiful can exist here, in the middle of the city.”
It’s better in Spring, with flowers and leaves on the trees.
He sat down on the rug and then wondered if this was a good idea. He’d been focused on the food and didn’t think about the rug and how that would work. He should have picked a place which had tables and chairs. Next time, he’d take her to a restaurant. Next time?
“When you said that your voice was gone?” she was looking at him.
Yes, gone, stuffed. he watched her carefully waiting for her to find a way to leave.
Bar fight, crushed larynx, he cringed, it wasn’t a good memory. Now hard to talk. Some days better than others.
“That must make things difficult,” she said as she sat. She folded her ankles and leaned back looking upwards into the sky with her arms straight out behind her. Her hair fell away from her face cascading down to the rug.
He felt his face crease. She wasn’t reacting like most women. There was no fake sympathy or assurances there. It was just a statement of fact.
“Have you always lived here?” she asked as she turned her head towards him and changed the topic of conversation.
He watched her confused but curious. She wasn’t reacting normally. There were still no questions, no need to explain the details. He was left wondering, again, who she was?
No, live in L.A. only here when I need to be.
“Los Angeles?” she’d sat up to read his response.
Her hair was now dangling obscuring her eyes and he had to fight the need to sweep it up and tuck it behind her ears. He had promised himself that he wouldn’t touch her today. No kisses. No holding her close to him. And no, damn, no hand holding. He’d already messed that one up.
“I’ve always wanted to go to L.A.” she smiled, “Is that were you were brought up?”
You could visit me? He answered avoiding the question she asked.
“You’re leaving? When do you leave?” her forehead creased.
Not sure, he frowned. After this weekend, he only had another two weeks left here. Technically in fifteen days he’d be on a plane flying home.
“You’re here for work?” she watched him nod then asked the dreaded question, “What do you do?”
Before, he tapped his throat as he watched her, was Actor.
“Oh, that sucks,” she frowned, “Not many jobs for,” she stopped, “That was insensitive, I’m sorry.”
True, though, he laughed his silent chuckle at her bluntness.
“I’m sorry,” she covered her face with a hand, “I’m not good at this.”
He reached up and gently removed her hand from her face as he watched her curiously.
Not good? At what?
“This,” she waved her hand at them both, “Give me a room full of professionals and a bunch of spreadsheets, and I’m fine. But this, this is hard.”
For me too.
When she didn’t say anything, he pulled the food out of the bag and offered her some. She accepted eagerly. He was surprised how she ate. She didn’t pick at the food like the other women he’d been with, she ate with appreciation. She tried everything.
“That was great,” she fell backwards onto the rug when the food was all gone, “I’m so full. It was delicious. You have to show me where that Deli is.”
He carefully packed away the picnic then stretched himself out next to her but lying on this stomach with the pad and pen in front of him. She had her eyes closed and was lying in silence for long enough to have him wondering if she’d fallen to sleep.
He reached over and swept a loose hair away as he watched her. He’d touched her, again. This wasn’t working.
She opened her eyes and turned her head to look at him. They lay there in silence watching each other while the world turned around them.
“Why are you here?” She finally asked.
He frowned. Was she asking why he was in New York?
“I mean,” she sighed, “I’m an accountant. I’m not a model and I will never be.”
“Come on Josh,” she shook her head, “You’re gorgeous. I bet you date stunning women. I’m not your type.”
He was flattered that she thought he was gorgeous, but he was confused by what she thought his type was. Did she know about the dancing? Did she know who he was? Is that why she had decided that he had a type of woman?
“Why are you here, with me?” she grimaced, “I’m not beautiful.”
That surprised him. How could she think that? Had she not seen herself in a mirror? She was more than beautiful. He loved the fact that she didn’t use much makeup. Her natural beauty shone from her. Her long limbs were graceful, and her body was delicate and fine. Her breasts were well rounded and full and made him wanted to bury himself in them. He knew fake breasts, in his industry there were plenty of examples of fake, but hers weren’t. They moved like the real thing.
His mouth opened but he knew that he couldn’t say the words, not today. He picked up the pen but as he looked at the scribbles on the paper he realized he had no idea what he was going to write. Everything sounded stupid. In the time it would take him to write it down, it would look insincere and she wouldn’t believe it was from his heart. All short word combinations were cliché and weak. How could he convey to her how she made him feel without speaking to her?
He turned to her and as he looked into her insecure but trusting eyes, he edged forward and forgot about the pen and paper. He forgot about all the promises he’d made and broken. She was lying next to him looking at him and he wanted her more than he’d wanted anything in his life.
He leaned across and brushed his lips to hers. His lips glided over hers repeating their first kiss. Then he inched back, hovering close enough to see her eyes and feel her breath on him but not touching. He had been too rough with her in the car. He wanted to kiss her thoroughly, but he didn’t want to take it. He didn’t want to be overpowering or demanding. He wanted her to want him. He wanted Belinda to kiss him. His breathing was shallow as he watched her watching him.
She leaned in but then stopped, they hovered millimeters apart.
Lying on his side he ran his hands inside her jacket and then skimmed his fingers over the cotton shirt as he waited for her to make the move. She rolled to him, but he maintained the gap between their lips. They were now facing each other lying on their sides on the rug.
She moved to nervously touch her lips to his. His fingers paused where they were as he waited for the kiss. Her body became rigid and she grimaced. Then she pulled away. There was a blush on her cheeks as she dropped her eyes from him.
“I don’t know,” she stuttered, “I don’t think I can do this.”
He lifted her face to his with his finger under her chin. With his eyes searching he looked to see why? Had he done something wrong? Was she rejecting him?
“I’m not,” she started to say.
He lost patience. He swung in and kissed her. He knew she was going to say that she wasn’t beautiful, and he wasn’t about to let her say it or believe it. He had to convince her otherwise and this was the only way he could think to do it.
He caught her lips and wrapped his arms around her so that her body was molded to his. He kissed her with slow deliberate kisses, their lips moving together in luscious unhurried caresses. He didn’t deepen the kiss even though he wanted to penetrate her mouth and claim it as thoroughly as he wanted to claim her. But not now. He wanted his mouth to show her how beautiful he thought she was and that didn’t involve eating her. He wanted the kisses to be romantic not lustful.
There was another reason he was taking this slowly. Prior to meeting her at that awful party, he hadn’t kissed a woman in years. Now that he had her in his arms he wanted to do this gently and savior every taste, touch and sound that she had to offer. He wanted her to know how special these kisses were. He couldn’t tell her this and he couldn’t explain why. All he could do was kiss her like she was the only woman in the world and hope that she felt his meaning.
“Please,” she groaned, her hands pulling his body to hers as she tried to entice him into her mouth.
Her mumbled plea set a fire in him. He didn’t expect her to be so responsive. She had kissed him in the car, but he’d put that down to the champagne. Today he couldn’t taste any alcohol and yet she was as eager for him as he was for her. This quiet girl with the big eyes and soft blushing cheeks wanted his kisses.
Only then did his tongue dart forward. She met him, their tongues danced together. He kept it slow and gentle as he employed every tactic he knew to maintain control over himself and his need to make her moan again. He wanted her, but he wanted her to want him, Josh not Goliath. Josh would take this slowly and be a gentleman, Goliath was the beast.
Belinda wasn’t clued into his plans though. She pushed through his hold on her, slamming her body against his, rubbing her breasts against his clothed chest, and urgently demanding more from him. He felt his control slipping. The whole world disappeared and all that was left was the women in his arms and his need to satisfy her.
Her hands came up and the cap was gone, his hair was free and the fingers of one hand were amongst it, secured within it as she held him and kissed him. Her other hand was inside his shirts and was running up his skin leaving a trail of fire behind those deft fingers.
It was his turn to groan and deep rough sound. He wanted nothing more than to roll on top of her and pin her body under his. Then he would work that tight skirt up to her waist and introduce her to the hard length that was throbbing in his pants. He wanted her to know that part of him in intimate detail and know it was hers to command.
No, he tightened the muscles in his abdomen. He wasn’t that man. He was Josh not JJ and not Goliath. He needed to slow this down. He needed to be more than the erotic dancer with the oversized equipment. If he behaved like that guy she’d never see him as anything more than that. She wouldn’t see him as Josh the man, but as Goliath the sex symbol. He needed more from her. He had kissed her, he wanted her for more than a quick affair. This woman was special. He wanted to hold on to her.
“Josh,” she breathed his name.
“Belinda,” her name was raspy as he kissed her down her neck.
“My phone’s ringing,” she wriggled.
Her body changed against him. The sensual and eager woman was gone. He released her from his arms and rolled to a seated position folded over with his arms on his knees hiding the evidence of his folly. What was he doing? They were in the park. He was supposed to be treating her like a lady but here he was kissing her in a public park? He’d rubbed himself against her and mauled her like a sex starved beast. She was something delicate and precious and he’d treated her like she didn’t matter. He didn’t want her to think this was just sex. He wanted her to know that he thought she meant more than that to him. What a stupid idiot.
She was up on her feet pacing as she spoke on the phone. He was at a loss what to do. Did he pack up and give up all hope? Did he sit here and wait?
“Oh, Josh,” she was smoothing the hair off her flushed face as she hung up from the call, “I’m sorry, something has come up at work. I have to go.”
He nodded without looking at her. He stood up, returning the cap to his head and shoving the rug roughly into the pack.
“Sorry,” he huffed.
“About this? About kissing me?” She looked hurt.
“No,” he barked, then he yanked the paper and pen out, I was out of line. Too much.
“I’m not, sorry that is. It was good,” she blushed, “I’ve got to go but can we do this again? Well, you know?”
He smiled as relief flooded through him. She wasn’t running. She wanted to see him again. He would get another chance at making her see how he felt about her. He nodded with a silly smile on his face.
He dropped his face and cringed at his foolish expression, when she stepped forward, nudged his face up to meet hers and kissed him with a soft brush of her lips. His hands disobeyed him and swept down her back and pulled her against him so that their hips were flush. His body wanted her and wasn’t listening to reason. He wasn’t ready to let her go yet and his arousal wasn’t hiding that fact.
“I wish I didn’t have to go,” she whispered as she moved with just a subtle gentle movement.
Her pelvis rotated just enough to press him against him in exactly the right way. His hands were on her tight little ass as he held her in place. He inhaled a quick breath as he met her surprised wide eyes as he looked at her with a hungry expression. They were standing facing each other breathing together.
The phone in her hand starting ringing again. She very slowly dragged her attention from his face and looked at the offending piece of technology. Cringing, he admitted defeat, and let her go, his hands falling to his side. She stumbled backwards as she answered the persistent phone, bringing it up to her ear. While talking she brought her eyes back to him. The look on her face told him how sorry she was.
“Go,” his words were stained, “I’ll text.”
He stood there, picked up the backpack and held in front of his groin area, and watched her run off in the direction of her office. He couldn’t move. She was gone, and he was hard enough to know that he wouldn’t be going anywhere for a while. He closed his eyes and tried to ignore the throbbing. He was going to be walking like a cowboy all the way back to the apartment.
She ran. The tight yearning was still there but she couldn’t think about that now. She couldn’t think about how he’d kissed her and how willing she’d been to have him, all of him. How did he do it? How did his kisses turn her into this?
Her boss had needed this information immediately. That was the only thing that brought her back to reality. The lust she felt was like a fire, hot and consuming everything. She’d behaved like a wanton woman. She’d kissed him without thinking about any consequences. And then, right there at the end, she’d rubbed herself against him. She knew he was enjoying the kiss, but the extent of that enjoyment took her by surprise. She was mortified by her boldness and embarrassed by the consequences of the kissing. This wasn’t her. She wasn’t the type of woman who did that to a man.
It might not be her, but he was impressive. He was built like the stallion down there. If that was all him, if that thing in his jeans could be believed, then she was entering new territory. The man was more than just well endowed. Her past lovers were nothing compared to that bulk.
Blushing, she thought about what sex would be like with something that big. She entered the building and glanced at the toilets as she waited for the elevator. She was wound tighter than a jack-in-the-box. How was she going to handle an afternoon of spreadsheet analysis when she was so pent up? She wanted to dive into a cubicle, close her eyes and imagine he was in there with her. Anything to bring herself some relief, but that wasn’t going to happen. He boss was up there waiting for her. He wasn’t the man she wanted, and he wasn’t interested in her aching loins. She pushed Josh’s face and body out of her mind as she did her best to focus her attention.
It was late when she finished the report. She looked at her watch and wondered where Josh was. Should she ring him? Offer to come over to his place and help him with that thing in his pants?
What was happening to her? This wasn’t her! She didn’t even know this guy. She’d met him twice and both times she’d been reduced to putty in his hands. She was pathetic. What about her career? How was this going to work?
He lived in L.A. He was going back there. Long distance relationships didn’t work. This wasn’t going to work long term. She’d used Robert for sex, but this was different. It was easy to say goodbye to Robert. He didn’t affect her concentration.
Josh was something else. If she did this, if she slept with him would she be able to walk away? Would she be able to cope when he walked away? She could tell herself that it was just sex until she was blue in the face, but what if it wasn’t? Somehow, she knew deep inside that if she gave herself over to him, if she gave him her body and her love, the Belinda Compton she got back wouldn’t be the same. The career, the house, the plans, everything would change. If she fell into his bed she would fall hard.
She caught the train home, her phone in her bag. She had a lot to think about. Her body was going in one direction, her head in the other. She didn’t know what she was doing. She wanted him in a basic primal way. She wanted to throw herself at him, drown in him, and let the world disappear. The question was, what then? What would happen to her when the inevitable happened? He would leave. He would return home to LA or just get bored of her. Either way she would end up alone and in tears.
And then there was her job to think about. Her concentration was already slipping. If she saw more of the man, what then? Would she be able to maintain her career while being with him? Would she have to sacrifice her focus, lose the promotion, in order to satisfy this lust?
If she gave in and gave up on her ambition, who would she be? Her career was more than everything to her, it defined her, and she couldn’t imagine what she would do without it. She had worked so hard to get here and sacrificed so much. She lived and breathed her job. In ten-years’ time, would she be looking back at this moment in time and hate herself for the decision she made? No matter what decision it was, career or Josh, would she regret it?
She laughed softly to herself. She was getting ahead of herself. She hardly knew him. She didn’t know his full name, where he works or where he was from. He was still a mystery man. She was in lust with the looks, with the rough charm he exuded, and with his gentle hands. And let’s not even start with his kiss, his long kisses drove her nuts. She wasn’t in love.
She was over thinking this. He wasn’t committing to her. Why would someone that hot commit to her? He just wanted her for a fling. That was all.
Was that what she wanted? If she turned away now she wouldn’t be risking anything. She would get over him, maybe after enduring a couple of nights of self-pity. There would be no impact on her work. Nothing would change. And she could always buy a huge vibrator. She laughed softly at the thought. Then she took a deep breath and closed her eyes. Even though it sounded logical, it wasn’t what she wanted. She didn’t understand why, but she wanted him.
The train noises were familiar and soothing to her after two years of traveling this line. After her behavior today, he probably wouldn’t ring. He probably thought she was a floozy.