Finally, Yours by Elizabeth SaFleur

 

Julianna fixed her eyes on a spot of light that bobbed up and down in the granite gray ocean. A buoy perhaps? The wind lifted her thin robe, and the fabric teased her legs. She’d been standing on her beach house deck for some time in an attempt to center herself.

In a few hours, she’d get to break the heinous solitude and finally feel the skin of a man she’d only met a few weeks ago.

To do so, she’d willingly put herself in self-quarantine for just under two weeks. Now she understood why solitary confinement was a punishment in prison. Sure, she and Gerard had been walking on the beach every evening, the six feet apart rule firmly in place. They got to know one another, sharing hopes, dreams, aspirations—and even fantasies. They talked on the phone—though the “talking” reduced to some salacious “doing” rather quickly. Take off your panties. Touch yourself. Spank yourself. Taste yourself.

The only thing they hadn’t done was touch each other, and that was tonight’s main agenda item.

Was she being stupid?

She was being stupid, wasn’t she?

Maybe not?

It’d been all fun and games during their phone sex so why should any “live and in-person” action be different? Except heat smeared every inch of her skin just thinking about their “conversations.” How would she react to the real deal?

This centering thing wasn’t working. She slipped back inside. A quick glance at the clock did nothing to tamp down her nerves because in fifteen minutes they’d be able to hug. After a two-week quarantine period, they’d give each other a warm, friendly embrace. It didn’t help her anxiety that Gerard stated his definition of such an innocent gesture was wide.

She fingered her phone for the hundredth time and decided not to call him. They said they’d meet on the beach at 9 p.m. sharp, and there was nothing to say anymore. There was only doing.

She turned to slip on the simple cotton sundress she’d chosen—waiting until the last minute to don it so it'd be as fresh as an ocean breeze—when her cell buzzed in her hand.

“Seven minutes, gorgeous.” His rumbly voice had the same effect it had these long fourteen days: tingles that could rival a shock with a live wire.

“Can’t wait.”

"Me, either. That’s why I’m down at the beach already. Care to join me to get your present?”

She swallowed. Her present? There went her imagination again. Was he offering that hug now? Or perhaps a romp in the sand? Oh, please don’t let it be that last thing because sand had a way of getting in all the places she didn’t want.

“I’ll be right down.” She killed the call, threw on her sundress so fast she nearly tore the arm hole, and scooted out of the house without shoes or even taking her keys—something she realized halfway down the planked walkway. Somehow she managed to get to the end without getting a splinter or worrying too much about home invaders. Hardly anyone stayed at the beach after Labor Day.

She jogged up and down the steps that bridged over the dunes only to stop short when she saw him. His dark hair lifted in the ocean breeze, his white shirt ruffled against his back and his tanned arms, which she swore got larger since she’d seen him, flexed. His bright smile greeted her as she strode toward him, the uneven sand making her gait clumsy.

“Hi. Oh, wow.” Her gaze drank in the sandcastle next to him.

“I thought one last castle before the weather turned too cold to come down. It is late September, after all.”

She moved to get closer and he held up his hands. “Ah, ah.” He tapped his watch. “Three minutes to go.”

Such a stickler for the rules. She turned to his sand creation. Seven turrets were connected by walls at least six inches tall making a seven-sided castle. Two hearts were carved in the courtyard area of the structure.

“If I had more time, I’d have done more.”

“More? It’s amazing.” It truly was. She pointed. “How did you make those hearts on the turrets?”

He waggled his fingers. “Magic.”

Little girl flutters filled her stomach. She wanted to know just how far his “magic” extended when it came to those hands.

They stood staring at one another for a few minutes. He glanced down at his watch every once in a while. The rush of the wind, fabric flapping in response, and the crash and fall of waves were the only sounds—except for her heartbeat which banged against her ribs so strongly she swore if she could rip her gaze from his face, she’d see it pulsing under her skin.

Three minutes—or however long was left in this isolation—could have been three years for all she knew.

“9 p.m.” His voice was so soft she only saw his lips form the words. He held out his hand. Little crinkles formed around his eyes as he grinned. “Now. About that hug.”

She swallowed and took his hand. Her eyes welled instantly at the skin contact. His hand was warm and a little rough and was the best thing she’d touched in far longer than two weeks. A stuttered breath filled her chest, and her heart calmed.

Oh, she was going to do more than hug this man. Of that, she was certain.

Julianna nearly wilted in relief.The man could kiss. She’d fantasized about what his lips could do, how they might taste, if he knew what to do with his tongue besides drive her crazy with little commands and orders. It was a fantasy no more.

They’d rushed up to his house and as soon as they were up the stairs and entered his living room, he’d embraced her.

His mouth fit beautifully over hers as his tongue explored and probed and, holy Jesus, within seconds she knew she’d let this man do anything to her tonight.

He finally released his kiss and he straightened her. My God, she’d slumped into his arms. “So that was a bit more than the chaste embrace I’d planned.”

“I want more.” Did she really just say that? “I mean…”

He chuckled, a low rumbly, warm sound that did nothing—nothing—to tamp down her rising lust for this guy. This British silver fox. This 100% manly… Get a hold of yourself, girl.

He arched an eyebrow. “What would be too much?” One side of his lips lifted in mischief.

“Nothing.”

“Oh, really? You and I are going to need to talk about limits, young lady.”

“Do I need them?” Her mouth was just acting on its own now.

“You most certainly do.” He eyed her. “But, tell you what, I start to do anything you don’t like, just say … hmmm … sandstorm.”

Well, didn’t that just sober herself right up from the lust cocktail she’d been drinking from. A tiny laugh burst from her throat. “Sandstorm?”

“Nasty things, sandstorms. It’s not something you ever want to get caught in.”

“I can only imagine. Okay, then. Sandstorm.”

He released her and the break from his skin sent a rousing chill through her limbs. She didn’t like being separated from him. A long, huffy breath left her throat.

He ran his thumb across her cheek. “Patience. Now, let me see you.” He backed up and plopped himself into the chair in the corner of his living room.

“Here I am.” She lifted her arms and let them drop to her side.

“That dress is beautiful.”

“Thank you.”

“It would look better on the floor. Take it off.” He settled his hands on the armrest and his eyes nearly pierced her skin with their intense glow.

She swallowed down a rising panic that this man wanted to see her nude. What had she expected, however? They’d dry hump like teenagers? Getting naked was part of the whole sex deal.

“Dress.” His voice grew steely.

Oh, my.She shimmied out of the garment and let it puddle at her feet. She refused to cross her arms. She shouldn’t be ashamed, even though that emotion was exactly what rose up. Her skin pinked up enough to match the fading sun outside.

He adjusted himself in his pants. “White lace. Nice.”

She’d hoped he’d have been pleased by her choice because it was her only choice when it came to anything sexy—a white bra with little scallops across the top of the bra and matching panties with lace adorning the sides. When did pleasing this man become so important? By the size of the bulge pressing against his khaki pants, it worked, however.

She’d wondered about his cock. Large? Thick? Circumcised? How would it feel inside her? From the size of his package, she wasn’t going to be disappointed no matter what.

“Now the bra and panties.”

Oh, God. Seriously? She hesitated. “Um…”

“Feel like a sandstorm is coming?”

“Could we get under the blankets first?”

He slowly shook his head, his smile firmly in place. “There is not a single thing I’m looking at right now that I don’t want to gaze at for hours. Trust me. You’re beautiful and you’re only going to get better looking—especially when I see your mouth drop open from your first orgasm.”

First? Did he say first? Why hadn’t she insisted they drink some wine first? This man was unabashed, so comfortable sitting there ordering her to take off clothes and get nude, and so sure he was going to be pleased…well, it made no sense.

Except it sort of did.

She’d once been on a diet where she wasn’t allowed to eat fruit for six months. Once released from that wholly disastrous attempt to shed a few pounds, the first thing she went for was a banana. She’d nearly orgasmed after the first bite. So, maybe that’s what this would be like. Neither of them had been with another human being for so long—another late-night confession they’d both made to one another—that any physical intimacy would be like Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt going at one another in that secret spy movie. Total, complete combustion…

“Julianna. You’re doing that thing again, love.”

She was letting her mind run roughshod over the whole encounter, as usual. “Overthinking is kind of what I do.”

His smile dropped and he steepled his hands. “Your choice. Always.” Then he … waited.

She shed her panties and bra and his smile returned. His gaze ran over her slowly, deliberately. “Now. Do you want to do this? I mean, we could build another sandcastle instead.”

She shook her head vigorously. “You promised me a wide definition of a hug.”

His head tipped back in a roar. He then rose from his chair, closed the distance between them, and had her up and in his arms so fast, her breath caught. His strength astounded her. An indescribable desire took over, and the thrumming between her legs rose to a fever pitch.

His bedroom was on the same floor as the living room and kitchen. Within seconds he laid her across his bed, the mattress so solid it barely moved. Her bare skin touched a soft comforter, nothing like the scratching fabric of bedspreads in most rentals. He most definitely lived here. She could tell from the few details she drank in since entering. Teak wood furniture, glass coffee table, leather chair where he’d ordered her to shed clothes.

He stood there, gazing down at her for another insufferable minute. Please some divine source make him get naked, too. New desperation crested inside her. She whimpered—an honest-to-God mewl—at the thought that he might not show as much of his body as she now offered.

The goddesses on high must have heard her because he went to work finally unbuttoning his shirt. He laid it over a chair. He toed off his shoes and dropped his pants. Each step took an interminable amount of time. Maybe she should have done a striptease like he was clearly doing for her.

Once his briefs had joined his pants on the floor, her eyes locked on his cock. Oh, my. She was not going to be disappointed at all.

He moved closer, his bobbing erection growing closer. When his knee dented the mattress as he mounted the bed, her brain shut down. Yep, gone blessedly blank, with the exception of one word—sandstorm, just in case. He attacked her mouth with his, and she lost all sense of herself thanks to his hands, his lips, his tongue.

With slow, deliberate caresses, he proceeded to drive her mad by touching every part of her body except where she wanted. Only until he was inside her would they close the distance that had lain between them for too long.

She grasped his shoulders, captured him with her legs and squirmed up and down over his cock. “Please.”

“Is this what you want?” He grasped her ass and yanked her closer so he pressed against her clit. He moved back and forth, which would have been a pure torment if it hadn’t felt so damned awesome.

She was on the verge of releasing when he pulled back, split her thighs further with his rough hands, rolled on a condom—where the heck did that come from?—and entered her, moaning softly in her ear. Her heart swelled at the sound. She wasn’t alone in her need. God, how she wanted him to slam himself into her over and over again. Instead, he stilled.

“Feel me,” he said. “Be sure.”

Sure? She’d never been so sure about anything, ever. Being with him was perfect.

She pitched her hips forward in answer—and he responded. Her head fell further backward and as he fucked her—slowly, quickly, hard, soft, and all the ways she’d imagined over the last two weeks. And, he’d been right. Her mouth did drop open, and way more than once.

Finally spent, he lifted himself off her body, rolling to his back and taking her with him. As they lay in the dark in total silence except for the whoosh of the air conditioning in the house, his hand ran lazy circles over his arms as she lay on his chest.

“Well,” he finally said. “I’m glad the weather co-operated.”

“What?”

“No sandstorms.”

She couldn’t imagine there ever would be one. She could stay here forever. At the rate of the pandemic that continued to rage outside, that could become fact. Her mind then flipped right back into automatic pilot mode.

What if Gerard was the last man she ever slept with? Ate dinner with? Built sandcastles with? Did she mind?

She twisted so she could see his eyes. “What if we can never leave? Never be able to go out and see people?”

He rolled to his side, sending her down to the mattress. They lay there for a long minute gazing into one another’s eyes.

He tucked a piece of hair behind her ear. “Do we care to see anyone else?”

No, she didn’t and she let herself dissolve into the magic of their evening once more. Sure, this time of just having just each other would likely be temporary but for once she didn’t mind not knowing when it would end.

Maybe it took a pandemic to find out what she wanted all along. A man who believed she was beautiful — in advance of shedding clothes.

“I don’t need to see anyone else,” she whispered.

“Well, then we’ve just gotten started.”

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