In the tub I examined my stubbly legs: Should I shave them? Nah.
I mean, what were the odds? Tonight I would have my second date with Brian, but I didn’t imagine we’d get up to much. Our first date had been marked by nothing so intimate as a hug.
I’d met Brian via the Nerve personals, and after a brief email exchange, we’d agreed to meet for a drink one Friday night. Brian’s photo made him look handsome and genial, and he seemed pleasant enough.
When we met I was disappointed (though not surprised) to note that he was quite a bit shorter than the men I usually date, and surprised and not at all disappointed to discover that I found him very easy to talk to. We’d swapped stories about our jobs and our secular Jewish backgrounds. I am also a little embarrassed to admit that I was impressed by his high-powered job: Brian is the second-in-command to a very powerful media mogul and clearly a high achiever. He oversees dozens of people and actually travels outside the country for work. Also rich, I assumed.
Anyway, our brief first date had ended with nary a kiss, and I’d been bemused to discover I’d like to see him again. Then I’d gone off to this party. When Brian contacted me and we made plans for a second date, I figured we would take things veeeerrrry sloooowly. So my legs remained unshaven.
This time we met at a bar downtown. I was early and waited for him to arrive before ordering a drink because I read somewhere that to do otherwise was rude, not to mention it might make you look like a lush. He was almost on time, and seemed pretty edgy. I mean “edgy” in the sense my father would use it; that is, on edge, jittery, and not particularly cheerful. (I think “edgy,” meaning cool or avant garde, is very poseur-y, personally).
I was sitting at a stool at the bar and he sat next to me, his body all clenched up (edgy, you see). I remembered something I had read: Mirroring other people’s body language puts them at ease. So I ducked my head forward and twisted one leg around the other, though I drew the line at hunching over my drink in such an uncomfortable-looking position.
Things got better when we started paying attention to the music – when I recognized The Velvet Underground and then Neil Diamond playing over the speakers, he seemed to relax a little. Ha, I thought. I can stun and disarm you with my knowledge of indie pop culture. Why yes, I can argue about Robert Altman’s The Long Goodbye. For a businessman, Brian sure knew a lot of obscure stuff – the kind of stuff I picked up as a teenager in my attempt to win over shy, discerning boys, come to think of it. Not that that worked.
Eventually we moved next door to the restaurant, where we were seated by a young waitress with henna-red hair in braids and a glazed, beatific smile. Beaming at us, she recited the specials. She seemed absolutely thrilled to be our server. When she had floated off, Brian and I looked at each other: “Is she on ecstasy?”
“Maybe she found Jesus?”
“Or maybe the food here’s really good!”
When I excused myself to go to the bathroom I stared glumly at my reflection in the mirror. Why did I suspect I was going to marry this guy? Was it because despite his height, I found him attractive, meaning that at last I had met someone I could put aside my shallowness for? Because he was Jewish? Obviously wealthy and successful? At any rate, the thought filled me with dread.
But in the amber candlelight everything looked better. Especially me, apparently. “I think you’re beautiful,” Brian said as we drank our wine. “I don’t know if that’s because I like you or if you really are beautiful. Do other people think so, too?”
“No, I’m not beautiful,” I said. “You might think that because I’m friendly, and talkative. I have a mobile face,” I added, as if in explanation. I do have an expressive face, though I can remain impassive if necessary. Still. He thought I was beautiful. Why was I arguing with him? What was wrong with me? “Thank you,” I added.
I didn’t eat much of my pasta, but we finished the bottle. When we were headed out the door, he leaned over and kissed me, briefly. Outside we didn’t take one another’s hands, but walked down the crowded street in polite silence.
Around the corner it was quieter, and Brian looked at me again, then backed me up against a shuttered metal grating. Our mouths opened up, our tongues mingling. Then he took my hand. “Do you want to come back to my place?” he asked. “I mean, just to make out on my sofa, not to have sex. I’m kind of a prude,” he explained as we climbed into a cab.
“I’m kind of a slut,” I muttered as the driver pulled into the street, but I don’t think he heard me. I slid across the seat until we were nestled together. Then I placed my lips close to his neck and listened to him breathe.
“Oh, it’s a mess,” Brian said when he opened the door to his apartment. I looked around curiously as I followed him into the living room. What it was, was bare – a few papers on the floor, but mostly just empty. It had a stale, old apartment smell.
We collapsed on the sofa and started kissing. He pulled off my top, and my bra, and unzipped my knee-high boots. As he started to tug off my tights I giggled: “I didn’t shave my legs!”
When we were down to our skivvies he picked me up and carried me down the hall into his bedroom, depositing me on the bed. But not before I had caught a glimpse of his lair: “How long have you lived here?” The bedroom was empty, too – there was a bed, an upturned cardboard box that served as a bedside table, and a suit jacket hanging over the door, that was about it.
“I know,” he said. Then he lay on top of me. Brian is small and solidly built—not my usual type. Try as I might, I couldn’t catch the scent of his neck, which I always find so important. We kissed, and he started to go down on me but I stopped him—I wasn’t ready. Instead I clasped his dick. As he tautened in my hand it occurred to me that I hadn’t really seen it yet—I didn’t know if he was big or small or thick or what; the room was dark (there was no lamp, either). As he got stiffer I leant down and gently licked him but he shifted on top so that he could eat me: “We’re both givers,” he said, and I could hear the smile in his voice.
At 4 AM we rolled towards one another. He climbed on top of me and whispered, “I’m really looking forward to having sex with you. You have a great little body.”
I swallowed. “Yeah. I want to feel you inside me,” I said.
We were pushing against one another, his cock stroking the scooped-out hollows my thighs create when I open my knees. His precum was slick on my skin. He held my arms above my head. Is he dominant? Does he realize it? I thought: I’m doomed. I’m going to marry this guy.
I kept thinking he was going to slip inside me, and it was kind of a tug-of-war between my pussy and the rest of me, because I was really wet. But he didn’t. Instead he moved between my legs and seemed to fumble. “Is this OK?”
“What are you doing?”
“Putting my fingers inside you.”
“Oh no, that’s fine!” I felt my muscles pull him in, and clench around his forefinger. I was really wet. He pulsed the pads of his fingers inside me, and dialed his fingertip against my skin. Then he leant down and licked my clit. I let out a groan, my head whipping back and forth on the mattress. His fingers and tongue kept up a steady pressure, and my legs started to shake.
His tongue tapped against my clit and I heard myself gasp. Because his mouth was full and I didn’t know how to tell him, I start talking to myself, silently, saying dirty things: You slut. You little whore, opening your legs to a stranger. You like that? I do, I do. My legs shook more, and I came with great relief. Brian’s tongue kept on at my clit, slow and steady, soothing me as my limbs returned to normal. “Thank you,” I choked when he came up for air. He chuckled.
Then it was my turn, so I slid down the mattress and squatted between his legs. I took the glass of water from the cardboard box-cum-nightstand, and then I wrapped my wet mouth, full of warm water, around his dick. I still hadn’t gotten a good look at his dick and as it was now in my mouth, I wasn’t going to anytime soon.
“Oh,” he said softly. “Oh.”
I licked the underside of his shaft as gently as I could, cause I loved that “Oh…. Oh…” It was not quite a groan, just a sigh. I loved the silky feel of his dick in my mouth, against the bruised flesh of the inside of my lower lip. “Oh,” he said again, “Oh.”
My head bobbed—now I could smell him, that damp, warm smell of boy groin. I licked his balls and the join that leads from his dick to his ass, then returned my mouth to his dick. Brian was breathing hard, and soon he said, “I’m going to come.”
I assumed this was so I could avoid having his come in my mouth, so I stopped sucking but continued to lick until he said, “Just…” and I understood. I placed my fingers around the base of his dick and breathed on his dick, and then he came. My hand was covered with a thin, slick streak of liquid.
Since we’d both orgasmed I felt this was a successful evening. I went to the bathroom and when I returned he asked, “Do you prefer this side?”
“I do,” I said gratefully. I like the left side of the bed, because I sleep on my right side and, if I spoon, must be the outside spoon. “That’s OK?”
“I don’t mind,” he shifted so that I could settle in. “I’m such a neurotic person, but I don’t care about that.” I laughed, and turned on my side. Again I tried to catch his scent, and again, it was impossible. He drifted off, and I thought, Abject terror, repeating the phrase to myself. I imagined our children, and how I could possibly adjust to living in a barren apartment with a bathroom that boasted the original 1950s fixtures. I turned onto my stomach and waited to fall asleep. You don’t have to marry him, I reminded myself, and the silliness of comforting myself about a possibility that didn't even exist made me see straight for a second. The notion that this personable, intelligent stranger was my future resolved itself into what it really was: an idea I’d used to frighten myself.
Because I am frightened. I’m ready for love, so ready that I’m afraid I’ll commit myself to the first eligible guy who crosses my path. I wish I could stop thinking, I thought (ironically). Is it a sign of my capacity for happiness or my emotional neediness that I can sleep contentedly in a stranger’s arms? Of course I wasn’t dreamily asleep in Brian’s arms, I was lying beside him, terrorizing myself with an imaginary marriage. How can I relax? I fretted as I shifted again, trying to find a comfortable position. I just decided to get married! To the strange man asleep next to me.