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Copyright © 2016 by Claudia Vann
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The entire act lasted ten minutes. Kevin’s final thrust happened about 30 seconds before my own release, and while it wasn’t a surprise, the part of me still holding on to hope ached with disappointment. I loved Kevin, at least I was pretty sure I did, but over the past year our sex life had taken a drastic southern plunge. We were both busy, but rather than spend the time we had together tangled up in sweaty, twisting limbs, our relationship had switched gears and consisted of nights in front of the TV where, more often than not, we fell asleep.“That was great, babe.”
His conclusion was predictable and wrong, but I nodded anyway. “It was.”
The words were automatic and toneless, but Kevin gave no sign that he noticed. Then again, maybe he just didn’t care. We had been together for two years, and now that the initial intrigue was gone, I was beginning to suspect he was just as bored as I was. We got along fine most of the time, and we still managed to find a lot to laugh about, but at the ripe old age of 28, I was inclined to believe sexual chemistry was nothing more than a short-lived biological need sensationalized by Hollywood executives for obtaining maximum profit.
“I’m going to shower.” Kevin shifted his weight onto his side, and I pulled the sheet across my breasts. My skin was already missing the heat of his body, and my thighs twitched from his absence between them. “What time are you going in today?”
The muscles in his legs flexed as he stood, and I watched him make his way across the room toward the bathroom. “Later,” I replied.
“It must be nice to work for someone who doesn’t give a shit if their employees show up to work or not!” Kevin’s voice was muffled behind the door, but his disgust came through loud and clear. “Seriously, Amanda, that company isn’t going to last much longer if he keeps prioritizing his ego over his business. When are you going to smarten up and leave that place?”
I stuck my tongue out in the direction Kevin’s commentary. Since the beginning he hadn’t liked my working for Cartwright-Bridgewater Industries and cited a distrust of ‘rich kids playing at big business’ as the primary reason, but after the company’s partnership blew apart and Zachary Bridgewater left my current boss as sole owner, Kevin’s negative opinion became a permanent sore point in our relationship. At first I thought the circled Help Wanted ads next to my morning coffee cup were cute, but the longer I ignored them the harder he pushed, and my opinion changed. I flat-out refused to read any more of them, and after the third less-than-subtle resume request from a business on the 8th floor of his office building, I demanded he stop. I didn’t see any reason to leave where I was, and although I didn’t love my job, there were perks. I made a decent salary, had friends in the office, and there was the ever-valuable lack of supervision on Mr. Cartwright’s part. He left me alone, I got my work done, and we coexisted quite nicely that way. In fact, once I realized he never made an appearance before 10 a.m., I stopped participating in morning rush hour traffic in favor of working past the 5 p.m. stated in my contract. Boston’s traffic wasn’t worth the headache and elevated blood pressure when the only person I needed to impress wasn’t even in the building, and I suspected my choice to stay in bed pissed Kevin off more than anything else. Kevin, of course, excused his behavior by claiming I wouldn’t know good business sense if he wasn’t around to point it out to me, and I retaliated by accusing him of being chauvinistic and overbearing. We spent many nights arguing until it finally came to a head, and after hours of swearing and tears (which I have to admit led to some great make-up sex), he promised to stop pushing me to leave. It didn’t stop the comments from coming, but at least I could stop flinching every time I walked into the kitchen for coffee.
“It is,” I called back. “I’ll have to stay late though, so I won’t get to see you tonight.”
The water falling against ceramic tiles sounded like rainfall, and my shoulders relaxed against the mattress. I had about fifteen minutes before Kevin got out of the shower, and that gave me plenty of time to finish what he had started. I would be too distracted to work with the steady pulse of heat between my legs, so I had no choice but to extinguish it myself.
After one more glance at the closed bathroom door, I trailed my fingers across my stomach, over my hipbone, and down to the swollen folds below. The sensitive flesh was smooth to the touch, and the feel of it beneath my fingertips made my stomach clench. I shaved for the first time at Kevin’s request, and I did it despite hating the idea of putting a razor so close to my most sensitive area. After removing all the dark curls I was embarrassed by my reflection, but Kevin had responded by becoming hard the moment I revealed my handiwork. He took me right there against the bathroom wall, spinning me around and entering me from behind with one thrust. After only a few strokes of his cock I shook with an orgasm so strong it caused tears to fall from my eyes, and from that point on, I kept my pussy shaven. The sensations during sex were intense, and even when I slipped my own fingers inside my wet folds and circled my clit like I was doing now, the burst of arousal reached all the way to my toes.
A mental image of Kevin took shape in my mind. I loved the way his mouth dropped open when he climaxed, loved witnessing that moment of pure abandon, and I reveled in the knowledge his orgasms were in response to my body. Blood coursed through my veins, and I sucked my lower lip between my teeth before exhaling with a hiss. With my free hand I rubbed my left nipple, then rolled it between my fingers until the soft flesh rose into a peak. My back arched, and I rubbed the palm of my hand over the sensitive tip in time with my other finger.
“Ohhhhhh.” A groan escaped, and my head dropped to the side. The pillowcase was cool against my cheek, but the fire between my legs raged as my hands worked their magic against my swollen flesh. I wanted to stop my fingers from moving, wanted to prolong my release, but the pulsing heat in my stomach urged me to move faster, harder, rougher.
I reached down to slip a trembling finger inside myself. “Yes,” I whispered. I slid another finger in alongside the first and pushed the palm of my right hand against the throbbing bud of my clit. “Yessssssss.” My hand twitched and my hips rose off the bed again as flashes of white light sparked behind my eyelids. I strained against my hand and moved my palm from side to side, panting and pressing against my clit harder as the blood rushed through my veins.
It wasn’t enough. I wanted more.
A shirtless Benjamin Cartwright replaced Kevin’s place in my fantasy, and I increased the speed of my plunging fingers. While I had little use for a person who believed the earth rotated on its axis for their benefit alone in the real world, I couldn’t deny my boss had earned every single stare and breathless “oh my”s I had been witness to. The perfect combination of physical genes had come together during Benjamin Cartwright’s conception, and it didn’t hurt that he was filthy rich, so his appearance in my fantasies made sense. My hips jerked and thrust upward in time with the new rhythm, and I fucked myself while imagining him between my legs, first using his tongue and then his cock to make me cum. My hips swiveled and rocked forward, the change in position causing my fingers to sink even deeper, and the sensation switched from simple pleasure to something bordering on erotic. “Like that! Yes!” I tickled my clit with the fingers of my right hand, and delicious shocks ran through my thighs and around my calves. “Fuck!”
I concentrated on the sound of my fingers as they moved through the wetness of my cunt. I recalled one of my favorite fantasies, the one where my boss thrusts against me as his big cock slides in and out and his balls slap against my ass... I slipped a third finger inside myself. The fullness made me gasp, but I still teetered on the brink of what promised to be an amazing climax. “Fuck me. Please, fuck me!” I pushed my fingers deep and twisted them side to side until my thighs began to shake, and finally, with one last, desperate flick of my clit, I tumbled over the edge.
My hips jerked and pushed against my hands as they moved, and my legs trembled. Thousands of sparks exploded in my bloodstream, and my nerve endings sent electrical zaps down my shaking arms and across my skin as I stroked my clit. “Ahhhhh. Oh yes. Mmmmm….” I plunged my fingers inside one last time and then stilled, the waves of release making me shudder as they rolled over me.
“Mmmmmm…” My eyes slipped closed, and the pulsing around my fingers changed to a gentle throb as the waves of my orgasm softened into caressing ripples of content. A smile touched my lips, and I began to slip into that sexually satiated space that would turn into unconsciousness if I let it.
I rolled over, and somewhere in the midst of all the random thoughts sliding through my head, I realized the room was silent. My heart lurched, and I mentally prepared a handful of excuses for my bad behavior. The threat of being caught made sweat pop out along my hairline, but after scanning the room, it was obvious I had nothing to worry about. I was still alone. Thank God! Shaving body hair was one thing, but self-pleasing one’s self existed in a category I didn’t want to explore with Kevin or anyone else.
I exhaled, stretched, and sat up. Kevin and I may not have had the perfect sex life, but maybe that was okay. Heat between couples was bound to fizzle out over time, so as long as we loved and respected each other, I could handle the lackluster action in the bedroom. I had proven I could give myself great orgasms, so what would be the point of looking for something that probably didn’t exist anyway?
The elevator doors opened to reveal an empty hallway. I was later than usual, but as long as the Cartwright Industries employees continued the Friday tradition of deserting the office by 2 p.m., I would have a few hours of silence to finish my reports and still make it to happy hour. Kevin was in Washington until Monday, and I planned to honor his absence by having a drink or three. I hadn’t been out with my coworkers in weeks, and the opportunity to nurse a Saturday morning hangover without an accompanying long-winded lecture was too good to pass up.
I dropped my bag onto the floor by my desk and peeked over the cubicle’s partition. The walls were considered low, but since I had been late and grabbed flats instead of heels, I had to stand on my toes to get a clear view. The hems of my pants pooled around my feet in an annoying black puddle even with my calves stretched at far as they would go, and I cringed as the fabric brushed against the sensitive skin of my feet. There was no time for me to go home and change either, so I was going to be stuck looking like a kid playing dress up both at work and at the bar. As if I needed help looking younger than I did!
I scanned the room and caught sight of my best friend with our new male coworker. She had one curvy hip propped against his desk, and despite our three-cubicle-apart distance, I could see his Adam’s apple bob. He loosened his tie, and Sierra, always ready to pounce, chose that moment to drop her shoulders forward. It wasn’t an obvious change of position, but I knew what she was doing, and the poor guy’s cheeks reddened in response to the Double-Ds now at eye level. His eyes widened, and with a noise somewhere between a gasp and a laugh, he leaned back in his chair so far I thought he was going to topple over.
Sierra’s smile grew, and a small twinge of pity gripped my stomach. Everyone in the office was used to Sierra and her antics by now, but the new guy had no idea who he was up against. She was relentless, and he was doomed.
I picked up my desk phone to dial her extension, and after a seductive wink in Carl Murphy’s direction, Sierra slid from his cubicle to answer the call. “Sierra Burke. How may I help you?”
Her voice oozed through the phone like a seductive mistress, and I shook my head with a laugh. “You can’t help me, but you could help that poor man by stepping away and giving him a second to catch his breath.”
She responded with a giggle of her own. “He seemed to be breathing just fine, Amanda.” Her voice dropped, and I had to strain to hear her. “I’m not sure about this one, so I’m just playing with him for now.”
“Yeah, like a cat with a mouse. Why don’t you put him out of his misery, Sierra?” I tried to keep my tone light while still getting my message across, but I wasn’t successful.
“I don’t have to stop pursuing my options just because you’re out of the game. I’m still entitled to a little fun even if you’re happy at home with Mr. Wonderful.”
I received the veiled accusation of my abandonment loud and clear, and I hurried to start on damage control. “Of course you are,” I assured her, “I just want to be sure you’re having fun and not doing something because it’s, you know, expected.”
She groaned before answering. “I am having fun, and no, I’m not doing it to keep my Office Slut reputation alive. This guy is nice to me and I like him, so who knows? It might lead to something. I haven’t found my Mr. Right yet, so give me a break, okay? If I screw up tonight, you can lecture me on Monday.”
It was the perfect opportunity to change the direction of our conversation, and I jumped on it. “Now that you mention it, I thought I’d tag along tonight. I haven’t gone to happy hour in a long time, and I could use a drink after the past few weeks I’ve had.” I held my breath, and the heavy silence following my statement stretched so far past the point of comfortable, I looked down to make sure the red ‘in use’ light was still lit on my phone. “Sierra? Tonight? Happy hour?”
“You’re coming to happy hour? Tonight?” She paused. “What part of hell froze over?”
Neither her comment nor her incredulous tone surprised me. If the arguments I had with Kevin over Cartwright Industries were considered battles, the ones we had about my friendship with Sierra were the World Wars. He stopped coming along on our weekly Happy Hour excursions after our first few months of dating, but that hadn’t stopped him from criticizing my desire to go. He called me incessantly while I was out, and after losing countless weekend to endless questions about who had been there and what we had done, and attacks on Sierra’s behavior compounded by my exhaustive attempts to prove how wrong he was about her, I gave up Cartwright Industry’s Happy Hour for quieter, albeit much more mundane, weekends.
I was probably breaking all sorts of office protocol by tagging along after all this time, but I could handle a few hours of tense conversation if it meant hanging out with Sierra and the gang again. “I am, and before you ask, Kevin will not be with me. He’s out of town.”
“Ahhhh, well, of course. It makes sense now.”
I swallowed the snarky comeback on the tip of my tongue. “Yes, I decided to rise from the relationship grave and see if my ability to function around single people still exists. I think I can still do it.”
“It will be interesting,” she replied. “I’ve forgotten what you were like before Kevin.”
Ouch. That stung, and she knew it. “Okay, so, let’s do it. C’mon, Sierra. Where do the cool kids from Cartwright Industries hanging out on Friday nights?”
Her exhale was loud in my ear. “Well, we started going to Mystic Palace a few weeks ago. It can be a nice change from the usual bar, but it depends on the night. Sometimes there are too many uptight business-types to make it worthwhile, and if that’s the case, we head back to the old stand-by.”
“Mystic Palace, huh?” I twirled a strand of dark hair around my finger. “A bit more upscale than Charlie’s. You guys have moved up in the world.”
“Yeah, well, we’ve run into a few of the executives from our office, and that makes for an interesting evening. We’ll stay for a little while if one of them comes in, but if Mr. Cartwright shows up, we pay our tab and scram. It’s just too weird.”
My stomach dropped. Bumping into Mr. Cartwright after a few beers was not on my bucket list, and I was pretty sure it wasn’t on anyone else’s, either. “I’ll bet. No one wants to drink with the owner of the company.”
“Well, not ‘no one’, just us minions. The leggy brunette he was with last time didn’t seem to mind.”
Gross. I did not want to hear any more about Benjamin Cartwright, and I certainly didn’t want to discuss his latest bimbo. “Okay, Mystic Palace it is. I should be there early, but text me if you change locations before I get there.”
“No problem.” She cleared her throat, and I put the phone back to my ear. “Um, Amanda? I’m glad you’re coming with us. You have no idea how much I’ve missed our nights out.”
I smiled and hung up. She was wrong. I did have an idea, because I missed them too. I was the one responsible for breaking up our twosome of trouble, and while I didn’t regret my relationship with Kevin, he could never fill the Sierra-sized hole in my heart. He tried like hell, but it was hard pretending he had ever come close.