Sara and I were on dessert – a luscious chocolate-kahlua mousse that we were splitting, passing one spoon back and forth – before we realized we were dating the same man. That isn’t as far-fetched as it sounds. Our town is pretty small, less than 25,000 people, and those that date do tend to get around. Apparently Michael did, anyway.
It was my turn with the spoon, and I took my time licking every bit of chocolate from it, savoring the knowledge that it had just been in Sara’s mouth as much as the taste of the kalhua-kissed chocolate. Just think, I thought, this could be my tongue sliding into her mouth instead of over the slick, cool stainless steel.
I opened my eyes and found her watching me intently. I blushed and handed her the spoon.
“Was it your understanding that you and he were in a monogamous relationship?” I asked, negotiating my way carefully through a subject that could be loaded, and more importantly to me, could impact my more lascivious intentions downright negatively. I wanted Sara to want me – not want me dead. As for my stake in the equation, Michael and I had an open relationship, so it wasn’t surprising or distressing to me that he was dating Sara. In fact I was applauding his taste in women right at that moment. Sara is a vivacious, plump, spiky-haired redhead with impossibly blue eyes, curves I would die for and the kind of flawless white skin sprinkled with freckles you only read about in books. Next to me, a pale, tomboyish blonde, she was as vibrant and warm as a tropical sunset in the Arctic. Oh, yes, I could definitely see what Michael liked about her.
“No,” she said slowly, frowning. “I guess not. I mean, we never really discussed it much. I just assumed—” She broke off and took a deep breath that pushed her lovely full breasts against the fabric of her silk blouse in a way that had me thinking still more lascivious thoughts, which I probably shouldn’t have been, since it looked like the girl I was hoping to seduce might be too straight – and too monogamous. “I just can’t believe he would go behind my back like that,” she finally said, looking at her hands, sounding miserable.
I felt sorry for her. Consensual non-monogamy is supposed to be just that: consensual, and by definition it couldn’t be if one side doesn’t know the other is being non-monogamous.
In the next instant it was him I felt sorry for.
“The bastard!” she said, raising her head. The old cliché about a woman being beautiful when she’s angry didn’t begin to do her justice. She was spectacular, eyes blazing and spots of color in her cheeks. In that moment it crossed my mind that maybe I could use that passion to, well, further my own ends here. Revenge sex can be so good.
Just as quickly, I discarded that thought. I really liked this girl, liked her in a way I hadn’t liked anyone in a while. I didn’t want it to be a revenge fuck. Or at least not only that.
I took a swallow of my wine to give her time to calm herself. When I looked over at her again the anger had seemed to have gone out of her and she was watching me.
“You’re not upset about this, are you?” she asked. I took another sip of my drink, considering what to say. I wasn’t sure she’d made the connection between what he was doing – dating both of us – and what she and I were doing.
The first time I’d met Sara had been at the funeral of a mutual friend. Hardly an appropriate place to ask a girl on a date, but I’d noticed her, and thought I noticed her noticing me. The next time I saw her had been at a friend’s gallery opening in the Central West End. Apparently we had some of the same friends, besides Michael. That time I had asked her out, to the play we’d just attended. I’d felt we were hitting it off splendidly, although I’d been careful not to come on too strong. At the time I hadn’t been sure if she was straight, gay or bi, and although my interest in her was definitely more than friends, I also liked her enough not to want to scare her away as “just friends” material. Unfortunately, that was looking as if it may have been a good instinct on my part.
Then I thought about how her arm had brushed mine in the theater, how she’d let her thigh rest against mine seemingly by accident; how she’d leaned over me to look out the window on the Metro link on the way back to our cars, and all of a sudden I wasn’t so sure. I remembered the feel of her soft, heavy breasts against my arm, the scent of her hair and skin in my nose and the way her eyes had seemed to linger on my mouth as she turned her head to say something to me just before pulling away. I’d wanted to kiss her then, and couldn’t think now why I’d hesitated.
Damn, I wanted her. I’m not a saint. I wanted the fire her red hair hinted at, I wanted her anger; I wanted her pulling my hair and scratching me, even if it was just working out her rage at him. I wanted to turn that rage into another kind of heat, the kind that burned her from the inside out. I wanted to shove my fingers and my tongue and the sweet hard strap-on I had at home into her, to claim that fire and make it mine, to fuck her into insensibility, until she couldn’t think about Michael or anyone else.
“Allie?” she said, and I realized I had been silent too long.