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All That Glitters

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1.

Stacey dresses carefully for each date night, but even more so on her nights with Claudia. Mostly, she likes to look good for herself, but she loves the way her girlfriends’ eyes light up when they see her. With Claudia, though, she feels a delightful pressure to look like art in her own way, to match the living canvas that is her girl. It’s not just date night, but opening night for the new show at the art gallery, and Claudia pretty much ran this one. (Which unfortunately means none of her art is on display, but she got such pleasure from finding artists and working with them to pick the best pieces for the show, and then arranging all the displays, that Stacey can’t actually be disappointed.)

Finally, Stacey settles on a black pencil skirt with light gray pinstripes, a darker gray sleeveless shirt with a tiny bit of shimmer to the fabric, and blood red heels. Chunky silver jewelry (each piece made by Claudia) decorate her ears, throat, and wrists, and she curls her blonde hair and leaves it loose.

And, of course, she wears a treat just for Claudia; sexy bra and underwear in candy-bright colors, because she knows her girl. When they close down the gallery tonight, Claudia will be riding an adrenaline high. Sometimes, they have to settle for making out in the backseat of Stacey’s car, a gift from Dad and Samantha when she turned seventeen, but Stacey’s mom is out of town this weekend for work, and their house empty.

For once, she’ll get to lay Claudia down on her bed, see that dark hair spread across Stacey’s pillows, and when she slides lips and teeth and tongue along her skin, Claudia won’t have to bite back her voice as it rises and rises with each thrust of Stacey’s fingers.

Oh yes. Stacey dresses well for her dates, but she does so like it when the clothes come off.

2.

Mary Anne’s been best friends with Kristy basically her entire life, but she still doesn’t really understand softball, mostly because she could not care less about it. Kristy’s what she loves, not the sport.

But she shows up to every game, and cheers when Kristy’s at bat and when she catches the ball or throws someone out. That’s pretty much the extent of her knowledge of the sport, and that’s fine. Sometimes she knits while she watches. Sometimes she does homework. Sometimes she reads.

Always, always, always, she’s waiting at Kristy’s car (she inherited the Junk Bucket, and how it’s still running, no one really knows) after the game. (If it’s a home game, she’ll be there immediately, and Kristy will join her as soon as she’s done in the locker room. If it’s an away game, Mary Anne will drive back herself, drop of anyone who was free to come with her, and then go park next to the Junk Bucket and wait. She keeps extra books in the car just in case the team bus runs later than expected.)

After this particular home game, she’s sitting on the Junk Bucket’s hood, reading and drinking water when Kristy comes out of the high school building. It’s way too hot for spring in Stoneybrook, and she’s wearing a knee-length blue skirt (Stacey approved) and a light-weight white blouse with a ribbon at the throat and a tiny little keyhole cutout beneath it. Strappy sandals complete the look. (She thinks they’re Claudia’s, but isn’t sure. They’ve been living in her closet all winter. They might be Dawn’s. It’s weird how the three of them have the same shoe size, but also pretty fantastic.)

Kristy’s hair is still wet when she leaves the locker room in the middle of a pack of her teammates. Mary Anne glances up from the book she’s reading -- The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton -- long enough to smile, then goes back to it. There’s only a page or two left before she comes to a stopping place, and she knows she won’t have more time to read this evening.

By the time Kristy is done exchanging high fives and joking around with her teammates, Mary Anne is finished, and carefully marks her place with a thin gold bookmark Claudia made and gave to her last Christmas.

“We won,” Kristy says, beaming. It’s unnecessary, but adorable, and Mary Anne finds herself smiling.

“I saw. Good job.”

Kristy’s smile goes a little sly. “I like when you watch.”

Heat rushes through Mary Anne, and she knows she’s blushing, but she loops her arms around Kristy’s neck anyway and leans in for a kiss. Kristy’s hands settle on her knees; as they kiss, Mary Anne feels Kristy’s fingers tickle higher and higher, up the insides of her thighs, and though she wants, more than anything, to scoot forward until Kristy’s fingers settle right where she needs them, someone might see.

The threat of that makes her quiver, and she shifts her weight, pushing her hips toward Kristy.

“God, you’re sexy,” Kristy says, and begins laddering kisses along the side of her throat.

For a moment, Mary Anne sinks into the warmth of their closeness, then pushes Kristy back far enough she can slide off the hood. “Let’s get out of here,” she says. Kristy laughs and leans in for another kiss, but Mary Anne doesn’t need to be a jock to move quick, and she dodges. “Now. I want your mouth somewhere else.”

That drags a raw groan from Kristy, and she fumbles her keys as she hurries to get the passenger door open. Mary Anne sits and primly smooths her skirt while Kristy hurries around to the driver’s side and lets herself in.

“You’re dirty,” Kristy says, awe in her voice.

“Mmm.” Mary Anne lifts one shoulder in a casual shrug. “I’m not wearing anything beneath this.”

“God,” Kristy says again, and with a quick twist (and a grinding noise that would worry Mary Anne if she wasn’t so worked up), the Junk Bucket’s engine roars to life. “Where are we going?”

“Dad and Sharon are out on a date tonight,” Mary Anne says, and buckles her seat belt. Then, casual as anything, she carefully begins to slide her skirt up, baring a little more thigh with each passing breath.

There’s another groan, and for a long moment, Kristy can’t stop staring. Finally, she drags her eyes away and puts the car in gear. “I hate you,” she says, voice rough, and Mary Anne laughs.

3.
“I love The City,” Mary Anne says, and Stacey grins, because she can totally hear the capital letters in her voice. She’s dressed for the occasion in what Mary Anne calls New York City style, all black -- black (faux) leather trousers, black tank top with silver threads running through it, black flats -- except for the red snake bracelet winding up her left arm. Mary Anne wears an outfit she ran past Stacey before they left the apartment, tight skinny jeans in a dark blue wash, brown ankle boots, and a loose bohemian top in purples and blues.

Later, they’ll change into fancier clothes for the theater, but for now, they’re just walking around the city, stopping whenever something catches their eye. (Mostly whenever something catches Mary Anne’s eye, because no matter how much time she spends in the city, she still loves it so, and her enthusiasm makes Stacey happy.) They’ve had lunch at the hole-in-the-wall Indian place near her dad and Samantha’s apartment, sipped cucumber water (Stacey) and strawberry soda (Mary Anne) as they explored Bloomingdale’s, and now they’re holding hands in Central Park.

It is so nice to be somewhere they can hold hands, they can even stop and kiss, without being stared at. Stoneybrook is a pretty little town, but it is old money and conservative. New York isn’t perfect, but it’s better than that.

There’s so much to see in Central Park they could spend hours there, people watching and talking and doing nothing at all. It’s peaceful in a way Stacey’s life often isn’t; she’s busy with Mathletes and Quiz Bowl and her college math classes and helping out at her mom’s store and trying to fit in Dad Weekends when she can and dating is complicated enough when it’s one on one, much less when there are four of you involved. She basks in it, and squeezes Mary Anne’s hand.

That earns her a smile and a quick kiss, and then Mary Anne leads her off in another direction, pointing out something else that she’s seen. Her butt looks amazing in those jeans, and Stacey adds another hour to the time she’s allotted for them to get ready to go out tonight, because there’s no way she’ll be able to keep her hands off Mary Anne once they’re alone.

As if she knows Stacey’s thoughts, Mary Anne puts a swing in her step, hips swaying, and tugs Stacey along.

4.

Normally, Kristy washes the Junk Bucket herself in the driveway, but Claudia has this weird love of automatic car washes, and talks her into going through one. She tries to explain the artistic value in watching the soap swirl along the glass, but Kristy has a hard time focusing on abstract artistic concepts.

An even harder time because Claudia peels off her oversized men’s t-shirt (artfully shredded and collaged) and under it, she’s wearing a tiny little camisole with no bra. Her nipples are hard and the fabric so thin Kristy can practically see the light brown of them through the pale orange.

“There’s another reason I like these,” Claudia says, grin gone wicked, and leans in, pressing her breasts against Kristy’s arm as she does so. “It’d be better if you ever wore a skirt, but…”

(But her girlfriends have long since given up on getting Kristy into dresses and skirts and frilly, lacy things.)

Still, Claudia makes short work of unbuttoning and unzipping the shorts she wears, and as soapy water envelopes the car in a smear of pink and blue, Claudia’s hand cups Kristy, fingers pressed just right, and Kristy jerks and jerks, her breathy little moans lost beneath Claudia’s giggling, and then her oh so dirty, dirty words.

After, Claudia licks her hands clean while the big dryer blows hot air against the car, and Kristy slumps back, disheveled and deliciously worn out.

“I wonder if I could create an installation piece based around a dryer like that,” Claudia muses, sitting cross-legged on the bench seat next to her. “Sort of desert heat meets fashion. It’s basically a giant blow dryer, when you think about it.”

Kristy nods and tries to get her breathing under control as Claudia, with a sly grin, takes her hand.

5.

They’re “watching” a horror movie in Kristy’s room with the volume turned way, way up, and still Claudia has to bite down hard on her own fingers to keep from screaming as Kristy, Stacey, and Mary Anne work her over. Stacey’s between her thighs, tongue and fingers at work, and Kristy and Mary Anne share her breasts. (Mary Anne is trying to teach Kristy how hard to bite, gentle kisses followed by the bright sting of sharp nips. Kristy still hasn’t quite got it, she’s too soft, but it feels so good there’s no way Claudia will complain.)

They take turns doing this, one at a time the center of the world. Someday, they’ll have a place they won’t mind getting dirty, and Claudia plans to paint them, on them, each their own colors and designs, and then when they come together on a white drop cloth, the sex will be art in the most literal of ways.

Stacey adds another finger, and Claudia starts to come, body jerking hard. Kristy kisses her, swallowing her shout, and Mary Anne’s teeth are very sharp against the side of her breast. She’ll bear their marks for days, body as canvas, and it is a beautiful, beautiful thing.