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Red Valerian

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He lies in bed waiting for her to come out of the bathroom. It's a pleasurable torture as he hears the water running, and imagines her scrubbing her face, combing out her hair, brushing her teeth.

Finally, she walks across the room with her no-nonsense gait, wearing one of his old basketball t-shirts that nearly hangs down to her knees. Lacy lingerie is nice, but give me a tiny redhead in a ratty t-shirt and I'm set for life, he thinks with a smile.

Sliding across the bed, she flashes him a familiar look that never fails to set his nerves working overtime. What is it that this woman does to me, he muses. Is it the forbidden, that I am her superior? Is it her partner's obvious love for her? Is it the dreamy way she touches me
with her eyes closed?


She smiles to see him sitting up in bed, his reading glasses still on, a book in his lap. Another World War Two history, she notices. What is with men and their fascination with war? Still, he lived through a war, came out on the other side alive. He has the right to be fascinated.

His body, God, his body. She knows that she could live to be an old, old woman and never tire of his golden skin, the tight muscles of his arms, even the garish scar on his chest from being shot. It is part of him and she adores it. Her only regret tonight is that she was in the bathroom when he took off his clothes. There is something deeply erotic about the way he slides a crisp white shirt off his body and lays it on the chair.

There will never be enough of this man for her.

It all comes down to stolen moments for them. An hour here, a rare night there. They must necessarily live in the shadows.

If my partner were to know, she thinks, and files the thought away for later. It's not time to think about him. She moves across the bedspread to her man.


Shutting off the bedside light, he moves closer to her. He can smell her almond soap. It is the only thing of hers she keeps at his place, the only memento he has of hers when he is alone. Sometimes when she is not there, he stands under the running water of the shower and smells her soap, the scent of her warm skin filling his mind.

He touches her fine hair. Red Valerian, he thinks as his fingers move through the threads. Is Red Valerian a plant or a flower? He has no clue, but he knows that she is a flower. She opens and closes for him. Closed, professional, brisk in the confines of the office. Nary a stray glance from her as she sits across the desk from him next to her partner. Her younger, handsome partner, he thinks and is immediately ashamed for the thought. Who has this rare flower in his bed tonight?

Like a blind woman, she closes her eyes and gently touches his face with her fingertips. The rough stubble of his jaw line, the tender flesh of his eyelids. Her hands run over the smoothness of his scalp, satin under her fingers. He moans and captures her index finger in his mouth, drawing it in to her second joint. Oh, the heat of his mouth, the wetness.

Finally, she gives into the temptation and instinctively reaches for his mouth. Every time she kisses him it is a surprise, a new discovery. They melt into one another in the space of a single kiss. The barriers, the walls are shattered with their lips and tongues meeting.

Her mouth travels a slow journey down his torso and he shivers in the air-conditioned room. Grasping her head, he pulls her up to look at him. It's difficult to say and he can only manage the beginning. "Could you ever?" he asks in a quiet voice. He already knows that she won't say anything. She never does.

She knows what he is trying to ask, but she doesn't know the answer.

Instead of answering his question, she lowers her head again and continues her slow worship of his lean torso. Below his white jockey shorts she can see the bulge and strain of his erection and she smiles at what is waiting for her behind the cotton. "Is that mine?" she asks, her hand running across the fabric.

"It will always belong to you." He gasps and pushes himself into her waiting hand.

With care and precision, she peels the shorts from his body and smiles to see his arousal. It never fails to amaze her that he wants her so badly, that he wanted her all this time. A master of many disguises, he never let the slightest hint slip until one late night in a hotel in Arkansas and then it all came out at in one blazing instant.

"Touch me," he says in the dark. His voice is as low and thick as molasses, yet never as sticky sweet as the dark brown liquid. She loves that voice.

But does she love him?

She doesn't know.

What they have is enough for right now. It has to be enough.

Pleasure thrills up his spine as her lips surround him, bathing him with the wetness of her talented mouth. The street lamplight trickling in through the half-closed blinds allows him just enough illumination to see the copper of her hair as she crouches over him, moving.

Mine, mine, mine, he thinks as his arousal wraps around him in waves.

But they are living on borrowed time, he muses. It may be days, weeks, months, but this woman will leave him. He knows this like he knows his own name.

He's prepared. He'll live. And in time, he may love again. A secret optimist, he has to hope for that.

He knows all too well for whom she will leave him. She has been promised to another. But until then, she is here in his bed, her mouth stroking his cock, his hands on her silken shoulders, guiding her. Live in the moment, he reminds himself. Live for this night.


Pulling her mouth away from him, she tosses her head. "Your turn," she says, and licks her lips. She knows all too well what that does to him and what he'll do for her.

His fingers creep down her body until they find her soft thatch of hair. She can't help but groan as his fingers slowly circle her clitoris. Yes, that's it, she thinks. He knows her well after all these months, knows just how to ignite her.

She wonders if he realizes how difficult it is to sit in meetings with him, her partner by her side. Sometimes he'll stand up and take his jacket off and a low whining noise enters her mind. No, don't do that, she'll inwardly scream, the sight of his muscular arms in shirtsleeves making her instantly wet. She's had to make more than one trip to the ladies room for relief after one of those meetings. And then she has to go back to the office and try to not look at her partner. God, she detests having to lie by omission.

Destiny is a funny thing, she thinks, as his tongue traces her inner folds. This man is not her destiny, she realizes. She senses something else waiting for her, but she doesn't know what it is. She can't think clearly anymore as his mouth sends her spiraling to the brink of fruition. His long, thick fingers moving in and out of her, she comes with a strangled cry and arches her back.


This woman, his love, even tastes like a flower. Sweet and fragrant. He is almost disappointed her orgasm came so quickly and ended his silent worship of her body. Sometimes he just wants to barrel into her office and bury his head in her lap, part her legs and lose himself in the honeyed depths of her. But she is never alone. The other is always there.

She sighs with delight and reaches for his penis. "Don't make me beg." She laughs and he laughs with her, loving her lightness in bed. Their lives outside the bedroom are intense enough.

A small woman, he is always afraid he'll hurt her when he is on top, but his lover is a woman of hidden strength. Her legs reach around and grip his back and he grits his teeth as he enters her. It's so good he has to suppress the urge to cry out. He's not demonstrative like that but he is aware she knows how pleased he is.

He wants to devour her, to have his mouth on every part of her fragrant skin, but he is satisfied to taste her peppermint flavored mouth, to feel her tongue entering his mouth, to stroke her hardened nipples. Control, he thinks, keep yourself in control, but it's too late. The pace of his thrusting quickens and she seems to become deeper, tighter, wetter for him. With a low gasp he spills over and for a moment the ecstasy threatens to completely take over, he's afraid he may black out from such pleasure.


Their bodies reluctantly separate. Her legs hum with afterglow, and she can feel the blush spread on her cheeks and chest. She smiles as he traces her arm with his finger.

He loves her, she knows this.

She desperately wishes she could return the favor.

Let this be enough, she silently entreats him, gripping his hand in her own, her mouth moving against his damp chest. Just let this be enough.

Soon, he falls asleep.

After a while, so does she, wrapped in the heat and strength of his arms.


As the sun rises, he opens his eyes and watches his crumpled flower sleeping, her skin rosy in the morning light.

It isn't enough, he thinks. He wants everything, all at once.

Sighing, he rolls over and tries to go back to sleep.