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Professor Rey Niima could always tell when the fall season came before calendars.

There was a coolness on the air, redolent of yellowing leaves, pencil shavings and fresh paper that spelled work in her mind.

Because September always equalled work to her, the university’s floors freshly waxed, resinous and glossy, halls yet empty but that would soon fill up with the sound of clicking heels and chatter.

Hopes, dreams, students new and old eager to acquire knowledge.

She crosses the wide hall with familiar steps, still sandalled feet hardly making any noise on the granite tiles, meandering her way to the anthropology wing and her office on the third floor, right by the ancient library with its musty tomes.

Every step felt like homecoming, after an entire summer of living in a home that no longer felt like hers.

Her office is warm and familiar, with its antique desk and oxblood walls, wondering where she’d hang the mask she’d been gifted in Bali, where she’d just spent six weeks with her husband studying local lore.

Unwrapping it from its craft paper and bubble wrap cocoon with careful fingers, until a knock on the door disturbed her from her task. Lifting her head to see the chair of the department standing in the doorjamb.

“Hello professor, how was Bali?” he asks, warmly, letting himself in the office with assured steps, clutching a thick manila file underneath his left arm.

Poe Dameron is a handsome man in his early forties, greying curls at his temples, Savile Row suits, and definitely one of the better bosses she’s had in her teaching career.

“Professor Dameron! How nice to see you, Bali was amazing! The people were incredible, and I managed to get quite a bit done on my research. It was great.”

“I can tell from the tan that you had a few beach days too…” he remarks pointedly, pointing at the gold of her hands against his own lighter one, chuckling when she demurs, “Did the professor follow along?”

“You can’t really blame me can you? White beaches everywhere are hard to ignore…the husband stayed indoors though. Research is more important than fun, of course. You know how he is...”

She says it with an overlay of fondness that is too rehearsed to conceal her deception.

Her husband is a dour, serious man, a well respected professor in his field. He wasn’t always that way, not when he first sought her out, and for a while she thought that their decades-wide age difference wouldn’t be an issue.

It wasn’t, not really, but with each passing year she could feel the chasm between them widening, as he got older, much older, and she tried to cling to the youth she still possessed.

Coming to terms with the fact that her husband is a bitter old man who wanted a trophy to parade. 

Professor Dameron doesn’t pick up on her rehearsed cheerfulness, pulling out the armchair across from her desk instead. 

He neatly crosses his legs when he sits, folds his hands on his knee with a look of feigned nonchalance she knows all too well.

“Let me guess, you have a favour to ask.” she cuts to the chase before he can open his mouth and he lets out a half surprised, half indignant sound.

“Am I really that easy to read?”

She laughs, sitting on the edge of the desk, crossing arms underneath her chest.

“The easiest , I know you too well Poe. How many years have we known each other, eight? Besides, it's my job to observe people, no? Tell me, what can I help you with?”

He takes a deep breath, looking genuinely disgruntled.

“I need you to teach first cycle anthropology this semester on top of your regular curriculum.”

“No!”

The answer comes out instantly. There’s no way in hell she’s teaching a bunch of kids who just got old enough to drink. He sits straighter in the chair with a pleading look.

“Please indulge me Rey, I beg you. With Professor Tico on maternity leave I find myself in a tight spot…”

“But you had all summer to find a replacement! You knew I would say no don’t be silly…”

“All the profs I interviewed were…unsatisfactory. And that's right, I knew you would say no so let me make you a deal.” he starts, retrieving the file from where he’d put it down on the desk.

“I doubt there’s anything that you could give me that could make me want this…”

He flips open the manilla file and offers her a sheaf of stapled paper which she takes, a little half-heartedly.

Her heart stopping when she realizes that they’re renegotiating her contract, with a substantial pay raise.

A very substantial one.

“So, what do you think?” Poe asks, his demeanor transformed from panicked to smug at her baffled expression.

“That’s…” she starts, leafing through the stack, “That's a generous raise.”

“You definitely deserve it,” he concedes, “you’re becoming quite a big name in the field with your research on South Asian folklore and that brings a lot of prestige to the university. You’ve earned this, no doubt. And if you agree to this little favour I ask, there’s a handsome bonus in store for you…” he continues, handing her another sheet.

She reaches for it with trembling hands, overwhelmed at the possibilities.

“The university wants to fund my personal research? How in hell did you convince them…”

He shrugs, chuckling low.

“Let's say I pulled some strings with the board of directors…So, what do you say?”

She laughs, a little breathlessly, heart racing.

It's everything she’s ever wished for, ten years earlier than she’d expected it.

“You’re making offers that no sane person could refuse. I’d be crazy to say no.”

“Then don’t, say yes.”

She takes a deep breath, looking at the figures at the bottom of the contract again.

Definitely worth a year of teaching 20 year olds the basics.

She looks up to Professor Dameron, who waits expectantly with a smile.

“Alright Dameron, you win. Where do I sign?”


No matter the hefty raise and bonus, she resents that first cycle lectures have to be so damn early.

Cradling her coffee mug in cold hands as she makes her way to the first floor and its set of still empty lecture halls, still feeling the imprint of pillowcases on her cheek.

Too early.

She writes her name on the blackboard, neat little chalk marks, and starts transcribing from her syllabus when a knock on the door disturbs her focus. She turns to the door, and sees a young man standing in the entrance of the hall.

A beautiful man, so tall that he nearly has to bend forward to get inside the class. Silky black hair falling carelessly across long-lashed sloe eyes, brushing broad shoulders in lush waves. Aristocratic features, at once bold and boyish, plush lipped, with a smile that gets her mouth a little slack. There’s a bold confidence about him that is completely overwhelming.

“Good morning Professor, is this anthro 101?”

His voice is warm and lovely, a rumble of thunder, and she’s a little speechless for a half a second.

“Yes. Yes it is. Welcome to my class Mister?”

He grins, a hint of white, perfectly-imperfect teeth, and it's just as overwhelming as a bold smile.

“Solo, Ben Solo. Very nice meeting you Professor.”

He extends a hand that is warm and soft and completely engulfs hers when he shakes it gently.

“I’m a little early, I hope it's not a bother?”

She shakes her head, more flustered than she’d like to admit.

“No!” she answers, a little too vigorously, mentally cursing herself for her lack of composure, “Please, make yourself comfortable, class will start shortly…”

“Thanks Professor.”

The words are respectful, but his gaze feels oddly calculating as he sits at the first chair to the right, across from her desk. Looking at her as if trying to see through her.

It's as unsettling as it is exciting, and she wonders what it is in those dark eyes that makes her feel so odd.


Ben Solo is a first rate student.

Intelligent, well spoken, focused, passionate in all the ways a perfect scholar is. His essays are beautifully crafted and his questions insightful. 

Not to mention that he’s stylish, and naturally beautiful, with an easy way of being that charms and bewitches instantly. His bold, broadly muscular body is a thing of beauty, moving with an elegance most uncharacteristic of other people his size.

An ancient warrior from one of her greek vases made flesh.

And yet she sometimes wishes with all her heart that she didn’t have him in her class, because the way he looks at her makes her weak in the knees.

There’s a depth to his gaze that makes her lose her train of thought mid-sentence when her mind has always been pure clarity.

She has never cared more about appearances than she has in her whole career, wearing deliberately pretty dresses and high heels, secretly pleased when she notices that glint in his eye when she enters the classroom followed by the clinking of her boots.

There is something dark and carnal in his gaze that is miles away from the good boy image he seems to like to portray and to find herself the object of such attention makes her pulse soar.

Their relationship is all too long eye contact and stolen minutes after class, him asking questions just for the sake of asking and her supplying convoluted answers just to keep him in her universe longer.

Standing too close together in the empty lecture hall, close enough for her to smell his citrusy cologne and have to bend her head back to meet his eyes.

She has explicit fantasies of him ripping off her dress and bending her over her desk that make her want to die with exquisite shamefulness.

Yet it stays undefined for weeks, silent exchanges and carefully worded conversations after class and she starts to think that it's all in her head. And much better that way.

She reminds herself that she’s a married woman, that he’s her student. 

He’s older than the other students, in fact, he’s a little older than she is, from what she’s snooped in his file. Post graduate, on his second masters. He’s still her student, though, and for that very reason nothing could ever happen between them for more unethical reasons than she could list.

Just a handsome, intelligent man with overly expressive eyes, that's all.

It doesn’t stop her from touching herself in bed thinking about him while her husband sleeps like the dead beside her.

They haven’t had sex in months, years even. He’s impotent and too prideful to fix it, uncaring of her needs, her desires. 

She doesn’t miss it though, thinking of the object of her fiery desire. Sliding two fingers inside herself, so wet, and her thumb on the swollen bud of her clit making her thighs tremble.

She wonders if it's the forbiddenness of it all that makes her orgasms so delicious.


She’s hard at work on her research in a quiet cafe, Sunday morning in early December, when a familiar figure sits across from her, tearing away her eyes from the laptop screen to be met with Ben Solo’s smiling face.

“Hello professor. I didn’t think I’d see you here on a weekend, what a pleasant surprise…”

He sounds genuinely pleased, and a little predatory, like a fox would be pleased finding a breach in the chicken coop.

“Mister Solo,” she manages, feeling atrociously self-conscious of her messy bun and makeup-free face, her leggings and cozy rust sweater, “what brings you here today?”

He starts unwinding the grey scarf from his neck, inviting himself to her table without permission, knowing it’s granted already, smiling wide.

“I was coming to do a bit of research but I’d much rather talk to you all day. Call me Ben, we’re not in class…” he adds, playfully.

She didn’t think he could be any more charming, but he is.

He’s so beautiful and his cold-pinked cheeks and nose make him look deliciously boyish. It's too easy to fall for his charms.

Dangerously easy when he orders her another coffee and stops her hand from undoing her bun with his own, her breath catching in her throat.

“You’re very pretty like this.” he says, simply, genuine, and her face feels like it's burning.

He’s all sweet and boyish yet the depths of his eyes spell danger and she doesn’t want to read it. She wants this too much to make any concrete attempts to stop it.

He asks about her research, fascinated, and she finds that it's so easy talking to him about what she is truly passionate about. It feels like the easiest thing in the world because he engages, he listens, and his fresh take on things is insightful and by the end of the afternoon she is so wrapped around his little finger that she accepts his invitation for dinner without a second thought.

He takes her to a bistro down the street, a little unpretentious place with fresh pasta.

Dinner is easy. He orders for them both, little plates of delicate appetizers and a few pasta to share, reminding her of how alone she’s been in the last few years. Eating her meals alone in her big kitchen, in that townhouse big enough to get lost in, where there is nothing but the ghosts of her faded marriage. 

Sharing plates with the beautiful man sitting beside her in the small booth only makes her desire for companionship more poignant. 

Ben gets them red wine too, a ruby elixir that gets to her head after a glass, a delicious haze.

Ben is the easiest person to talk to, casual talker extraordinaire, as lively in mundane conversations as he is discussing anthropology.

“I can’t believe I’m having dinner and drinks with a student…” she mumbles in her after-dinner glass of wine and he laughs.

It's a clear, honest laugh that makes his eyes crinkle at the corners and she’s so deep underneath his spell that she hardly realizes how crazy this whole thing is.

How wrong, how unprofessional, how deeply unethical .

“I mean I’m hardly a student anymore, despite the first cycle anthro class. I’m taking it for fun, to pad out my doctorate application. Can’t say I expected to have as much fun as I do in your class though…” he purrs, and she feels like she’s about to lose her mind.

She hasn’t been courted since her own college days and his attention is intoxicating.

He’s gorgeous and smart and his knees touch hers underneath the table and his smile makes her want to kiss him.

It's the only thing she can think of.

Lush lips and tongue and teeth and forbidden desires and the skin between her thighs heats up at the possibilities.

“I’m glad you’re enjoying the class, and my company.” she replies, trying very hard not to sound coy and failing, toying with the edge of her soup spoon to keep from fidgeting.

“I’ve always wanted to take a smart woman like you on a date. A married woman…” he murmurs, eyeing the ring on her finger, her fidgeting hand stalling.

Thoughts of her husband do nothing to sober her madness.

“I don’t love him anymore.” she admits, unprompted and he seems a little surprised at her admission.

It's a strange relief to voice it.

She’s known it for a while, weeks, months, years even, but it's the first time she says it out loud, and it feels liberating.

Ben grabs her thigh underneath the table, his large hand hot through her leggings, bold, and she is shocked into silence.

There’s an intensity to his eyes that make it impossible to look away, and she realizes with excited embarrassment that she’s so wet it's seeping in the lace of her underwear.

“I want to make you forget him. I will make you forget him.”

It's the words that shatter the dream.

Make it explode in a thousand slivers.

She’s in a bistro with a student holding her thigh underneath the table where anyone could see and he’s just admitted that he wants her as much as she wants him and it's so ludicrous she can hardly believe it herself.

“I…I can’t do this.” she mutters, panicked, shifting to the side across the leather banquette and he holds on to her knee.

His dark eyes widen in surprise at her sudden panic.

“Wait, Rey. Stay, please…” he asks, but lets go when she stands, feverishly shrugging into her wool jacket, thoughts going a thousand miles a minute.

Anyone could see, anyone could know and everything would be over before it even started.

“I’m sorry…Ben…I’m…”

Words fail her. Fleeing is easier.

He doesn’t run after her, lets her walk alone in the cold to her car in which she sits half an hour without moving, breathing hard.

Trying to sober up but failing.

Imagining herself kissing Ben Solo. Imagining her hands raking down his broad back and his perfect mouth between her legs.

His gaze when she sees him in class the next morning is incendiary and she feels herself melting underneath it.

It's so overwhelming she ends the class early, holding her breath when he walks by her on his way out. So close, too close, and there’s a fleeting brush of his fingertips on her hip that makes her knees buckle.

She realizes this is only the beginning.


He leaves notes in her office mailbox.

Unsigned, but she knows his handwriting perfectly, neat, slanted lines. He has gorgeous penmanship, and it only makes the lewdness of his words more shocking, to see them couched in fine ink on quality paper. They only make her want him so much it borders on desperation.

I want to own your lips.

*

I think about kissing you in class. Sometimes it's all I can think about, shoving my tongue in your mouth, my hands underneath your skirt. Two fingers deep in your cunt. It's all I’ve ever wanted. You’re what I think about when I jerk off.

*

I want to put my mouth on your cunt. I want to eat you out until you beg me to let you come, and taste you for hours afterwards. Wouldn’t you love that?

*

I want you naked in my bed. I want to show you pleasures that you’ve only dreamed of, until you feel like you could never get enough of me. I want to feel you come when I’m inside you.

*

I want you. I want you so much I can’t think straight.

It's that last note that makes her bend. That single line.

She can’t think straight either. The tension is gonna do her in if she doesn’t do something about it and she feels a little insane stopping by his desk on her way inside the lecture hall, finding him early. As usual.

In early. Out late. Her delicious tormentor.

“I need to see you in my office after class.”

Ben looks up from his spread out notes, the right side of his mouth curling up. He looks absolutely stunning in the grey knit sweater that falls perfectly on his broad shoulders, his hair tousled up and away from his face.

It takes all of her self-control not to throw herself at him, in his arms, give him all he’s been wanting for all those months.

“You do?”

“I have a few things to discuss with you, if you have time of course.”

He smiles, gathers his notes in a neat pile.

“Ah, you do. I always have time for you, Professor.”

Her lecture is a blur. 

She couldn’t focus if her life depended on it, and when it finally ends her hands tremble when she gathers her notes, shoving them in her briefcase without sorting them. She feels like her skin is too tight, sweat running down her back and it's all a haze until Ben’s voice brings her back to reality.

“Is there another lecture after ours, Professor?”

He’s standing by the door and the hall is empty. He’s left his jacket and his notes on the table.

She shakes her head, trying to get her brain back to working order.

“No. There isn’t, why?”

He closes the door, sharp click, lock turned before she can make sense of it and he’s coming to her with that carnal determination in his eyes.

Taking her face in his big warm hands and she feels so small when he tilts her head back and kisses her. Kisses her without an ounce of reservation, furiously, plush lips forcing hers apart to slide his velvety tongue against hers, teasing flicks that make her moan low and cling to him with all she’s got.

He’s so overwhelmingly close, broad shoulders, muscled arms and that enticing citrus cologne that clings to his skin, his hair. Breathing in deep when his mouth traces the side of her neck, hot and wet and he sits her up on the desk, lifting her like she weighs nothing.

He backs off looking a little dishevelled himself, hair curling on his forehead and cheeks flushed but so confident.

So very confident when he pulls a chair to the desk, sits down between her thighs, hands raking up her skin underneath her dress.

Her head is swimming, breathing harder when he rolls her dress up her thighs.

He doesn’t bother finding the waistband of her sheer pantyhose, impatiently ripping a hole through the crotch instead, pulling a small sound from her throat.

“Ben...” she gasps and he smiles.

He smiles even more when he moves her underwear aside, bends low to kiss the inside of her thigh.

“You want it so badly…” he murmurs against her skin, pushing her thighs further apart with his shoulders, “You’re so beautiful…”

“Yes…Please yes…” she breathes, her head falling back, his kisses on her skin more insistent.

She lets out a gasping moan when he presses his mouth to her without warning, all heat, tongue flattening against her cunt, his fingers biting into her thighs.

He’s the best she’s had for as far as she can even remember, and it takes all she has not to orgasm too fast. 

He devours her like he can read her desires with the tip of his tongue, coaxing her down on the table and her thighs over his strong shoulders. Her hands in his thick hair while his own rake her body underneath her dress. Trace the curve of her hips and caress the flat slope of her belly and up, up underneath the wires of her bra to cup her small breasts.

It's delicious. It's madness. The lock on the door is flimsy and her cries are far too loud.

It's so good she doesn’t want it to ever stop, her entire body alive with shivery pleasure and he’s relentless.

Until she gets so close her thighs tremble and he knows, he knows and only goes deeper, harder, sucking on the apex of her cunt like he wants to eat her alive and she feels all of her nerve endings set off like fireworks.

She can’t breathe, her back arching up and spine locking, clawing at the table underneath her to keep her grip on reality but he’s holding her down. His fingers digging in her hips, pushing her against his mouth as he licks her through the orgasm, so perfectly determined.

She’s a little disoriented when he pulls away and she is dragged down in his lap, falling apart against him when she realizes he’s pulling her down on his erection freed from his jeans. Oversensitive flesh clenching around his as he pulls her down, settling her in his lap.

He’s big, much bigger than what she’s had in recent years but she is pliant and wet from her orgasm and she wants him so badly, her cunt sheathing his cock like it’s always belonged inside her.

“You feel so good… fuck ,” he curses, “I’ve been wanting to do that from the day I stepped into your class…” he murmurs against her neck, pressing her tight to him before gathering her long hair in his hands.

The sharp, backwards pull is a spike of sensation down her body through her scalp.

“That feels good doesn’t it…” he purrs, tugging back at her hair and she’s so overstimulated all she can do is moan helplessly, feeling him settle inside her with each sharp tug.

His eyes are so dark, like onyx pools, and she is so lost in them when he pulls her close for another kiss, fingers tightly fisted in her hair.

Musky sweet tongue and a roll of hips underneath her that shifts him inside her in the most delicious of ways.

“Ride me, be a good girl…” he breathes against her lips and that sharp tug on her nape sets her hips into motion.

Slow rolls that rub them both in all the right ways, sweat pearling on his upper lip when he bites the lower, white teeth on pink. Hands freeing her hair to grip her ass, coaxing her faster, harder, up and down, the chair creaking underneath them from the combined weight.

Heat roars through her body when his head falls back, breathing hard, thighs flexing underneath hers and his fingers bruising her hips.

He’s loud when he comes, deep moans and harsh breaths, dark eyes full of stars.

How he pulls her close afterwards is unexpected, burying his face in her neck, his arms like a vice around her waist as they sit chest to chest on the too small chair, trying to catch their breaths, still joined so intimately. His cheek sweaty-hot against her throat.

“You’re such a good girl…” he murmurs, so sweetly.

“I’m still your professor…” she replies, feeling the smile tugging at the corners of her lips, fingers combing through his silky hair.

She feels borderline giddy. It's an odd emotion she couldn’t place if ever asked to, but she loves it.

“You’re still a girl. You’re my girl…”

She doesn’t want to challenge him on that. Not even a little bit.

She’s in more trouble than she could ever explain herself out of but she can’t even make herself care.

No one has to know.


It starts in the lecture hall, but as the weeks pass, they realize old universities are full of secret rooms, deserted lecture halls and quiet library aisles. 

He loves her office most of all though. Perhaps it’s the deliciously wicked idea that there are other professors on each side of her walls, quietly grading papers in their respective offices. Meeting students about their term papers while he fucks her between two lectures. 

That afternoon he’d shown up with a coffee for her, and it sits cooling on her desk while he does unspeakable, delicious things to her. 

He has her pinned against the wall of her office, cheek pressed to the oxblood paint, arms behind her back. Tied neatly with the silk scarf she had worn in her hair that morning.

Two turns around each wrist and a neat little knot that only he has the secrets of.

Submitting to his exploration, his big hands underneath her clothes, so agile, worshipping all of her with soft palms when she can’t even return the favour, arms bound.

It's a glorious frustration, when his hands cup her hips, trace the roundness of her ass.

Thighs trembling when his hand dips down the back of her underwear, knowing fingers tracing down the cleft, down to pooling wetness where he shoves two fingers. So gently she whines in frustration.

He chuckles at her helpless sounds, grabs a handful of her hair at her nape and tugs gently, forcing her head back and her ear to his mouth.

“Patience, baby girl…patience is well rewarded…” he murmurs, so low it makes her entire body quiver.

She isn’t scared.

She isn’t scared when his hands work her underwear down her thighs, she stopped being scared months ago when they’d fucked in the lecture hall.

Now she’s only looking forward to more. And he delivers, he always gives more.

There’s a caress before the slap, always. A soft warm up.

Then it cracks across her skin, searing heat that diffuses through her flesh.

He leaves red imprints on her skin that she will treasure, later in her bathroom mirror, looking at the marks.

The outline of his big hand on her golden flesh. The sharpness of his teeth against the softness of her breast, those little red notches over her heart.

She treasures it all.

He spanks until her skin is scarlet, swollen, and he knows she can’t take any more and expect to sit down the next day. He’s cruel but only if she wants it, and it's the most delicious cruelty she could ever imagine.

Soothing her with soft caresses, a finger deep inside her, slow thrusts.

Her shoulders screaming at the strain of her bound arms, but she wants him more than she wants to be free.

“You’re so beautiful…” he murmurs against her shoulder, pulling her hair while he fits himself inside her from behind, crushing her against the wall.

Her hips push back against his own, and he leaves the imprint of his hip bones in the tender, bruised flesh of her rear and she loves him for it.

She loves him more than is wise or smart but she can’t stop it.

She couldn’t stop the tide, so she let herself be consumed by it completely.

She tells herself it's alright, as he slips a hand between her body and the wall, sliding it down at the junction of her thighs while he plunders her. Breathing hard and fast against the back of her neck, moaning and cursing. Hips like pistons and his fingers coaxing the orgasm out of her, leaving her moaning and pleading, knees buckling.

It's all alright, when he holds her tight in the aftermath, murmuring against the bare skin of her neck, his come dripping between her thighs.

“Baby…sweet baby girl…”

She tells herself it's alright when she realizes that falling in love with someone is as beautiful as it is terrifying.

No one has to know.


“You come home late these days.” her husband remarks, ambling into the kitchen for more tea as she pours herself a glass of wine.

She takes a long sip, the lengthy kisses with her lover in the parking lot before she left the university parching her mouth.

“The university pays me to research, I should put in the hours, no?” she replies, before taking another sip.

He makes a dismissive noise, doesn’t grace her with a real reply. He resents her for her success, thinks she should stand behind him where a proper wife should.

She notices all the little things that she once thought attractive in him melting away, the comparison with her lover so jarring.

He shuffles out of the kitchen without another word on slippered feet. She is not worthy of discussion, of attention.

It makes it easier to lie to him.

It makes it a thousand times easier to lay back on her office desk with Ben on top of her and not feel guilty when she comes home smelling of sex and citrus cologne, wearing that well-fucked smile and that glow to her cheeks.

She takes another sip of her glass.

No one has to know.


Ben’s apartment is very much like him.

Elegant, classic, but the furniture is antique and there’s more art on the walls than she’s seen in some museums.

His kitchen is a pretty shade of terracotta, and he messes up dinner because he’s too busy kissing her breathless against the marble counter.

He’s a little sheepish when she remarks that he knows the nearest pizza joint’s number by heart.

“I really like pizza! Is it a crime or something?”

His tone is happy, teasing.

She finally agreed to go to his place and he’s deliriously happy about it and it shows. He’s happier than she thought he would be and that fact does strange fluttery things to her heart.

They have pizza and wine, and there’s a pointless attempt at watching a movie that ends with her on her knees on the floor at his feet, her mouth between his strong thighs.

He’s beautiful when he’s naked, all corded muscle and ivory skin, with his dark, dark hair curling on his shoulders.

His hand fisted tight in her hair, pushing her mouth down on his cock until her breath gets laboured and stars explode in the darkness behind her eyelids.

His hips pulse when he comes, salty and bitter on her tongue and his eyes studying her underneath the thick fringe of his lashes are gorgeous.

His bed smells like his delicious skin, her body sinking into it like it belongs there when he climbs on top of her, shoves her thighs up his hips, mouth like fire on her eyelids.

“I love you…” he breathes against her forehead, fitting himself inside her like always does, slow, long strokes that have her spine arch desperately.

This joining doesn’t have the finesse of their usual trysts. It's harsher, rougher, more desperate.

His fingers bruise her throat when they wrap around it, tight, just enough to make it hard to draw breath but not enough to choke.

It hurts, beautifully.

In a way that makes her head spin and her skin ignite.

His kisses are dizzying and his hips merciless, unbearable friction between her thighs that builds up faster than she can control.

“Tell me…” he gasps against her mouth, fingers tightening around her throat, “Tell me you want to come…”

“Yes…please…”

He lets go of her throat and the hit of oxygen is the pure euphoria that undoes her completely. She comes so hard her vision hazes with white. 

His hips pounding the last few desperate strokes of his own orgasm before he collapses on top of her, seeking her lips, his hands snaking underneath her as if he’s afraid she’ll disappear.

“I love you… god , I love you…” he murmurs, breathless and she tucks his head underneath her chin, strokes his silky hair until he goes slack with sleep on top of her.

It's alright. No one has to know desperately she loves him too. Some trysts are better kept secret.

She thinks of her loveless marriage, and how it could destroy her career if anyone knew how she longs for Ben. How her body sings for his.

She takes a deep breath, counting the months until the end of the winter semester when this charade can stop, willing her heart to be patient.

Ben doesn’t have to know how much she loves him, but soon, he will, and there won’t be any more secrets to keep.