This was Sarah's first date with Paul.
She had been giggling nervously the whole time she'd been getting ready, applying her mother's lipstick, slight rouge to her cheek. Mom had been smiling, Dad had joked about making sure he had his revolver cleaned and ready when "the boy" arrived. Ha, ha.
She wore a puffy crinoline under her pink skirt, and it made her feel special. Like a present.
He took her to the diner, first. He was wearing his letter jacket, with the school colors hanging across his broad shoulders, the football insignia entwined with the school mascot at the lapel. And blue jeans, tight around his...
Sarah blushed and stopped that train of thought. She wanted to get her usual, the Super Charlie Burger with Chili Fries, but she didn't want him to think she was a sow, so instead she got a chicken sandwich and a light salad.
Paul told her about the quarterback, and how much of a jerk he was, and how he had stolen Paul's last girlfriend, Penny, and how she'd been a nice girl, but he'd turned her into a whore.
She flinched at his strong language. Something in her twitched. It must be her tummy, as she watched him eat his Super Charlie Burger. She dove into her lettuce and tomatoes in response.
"I'm so glad you're not like that, Sarah. You're a good girl."
That same twitch again, and this time it was definitely lower than her tummy. Well, why not? She was a good girl, and proud of it! She happily devoured her chicken sandwich.
After dinner it was time for the movie. They got in his Chevy and went to the drive-in.
The ticket attendant took Paul's money, and waved them through to the huge field in front of the screen. Sarah liked to park near the front, so she could play on the swings during the intermission. Childish, she knew, but she was not yet an adult. Why not live life to the fullest, no matter your age? Paul parked near the back, however, to the point where she wondered how they were going to see the movie. They weren't even near the hot dog stand.
He did, however, make sure to ask her what she wanted for refreshments before he headed to the stand himself. She asked for popcorn and a bottle of Coca-Cola, and he left the car to retrieve them. Not before giving her a firm peck on the cheek, though. She blushed.
As she waited, Sarah looked around the interior of the car. Fuzzy dice hung from the rear-view mirror. She turned around to the back seat. Had he ever taken Penny back there? No, she had been a nice girl, he'd said. Not a whore.
Not yet. Her crinoline felt funny in her lap.
She stroked the steering wheel, where his hands had held it. It was stiff, and round, and leathery-smooth. She leaned over it, and smelled it, tasted the residue of his sweat.
What was she doing?
She sat up abruptly, hands in her lap, demurely. Legs uncrossed, though. The car was no place to have one's legs crossed. There was barely room for it, between the seat and the dashboard. No room for...
The side door snapped open, and Paul was back in the car. Slam. He bore two huge tubs of popcorn and two Coke bottles.
She smiled winningly at him. He leered back at her. She didn't like that so much. She looked away and ate popcorn absently.
Paul took it in stride, though. Not like the time Stephen Coolidge had gotten fresh, and she'd had to dump a bottle of soda pop on his trousers. And then the next day he'd told all the boys in school that he'd "gotten to third base" with her! She had never even paid attention to what all the "bases" were, but she felt certain she hadn't let that jerk go to any of them.
Especially third. She had standards.
Darn it, she shouldn't have worn the crinoline. It was making her lap feel funny again. And humid. She lightly scratched at her upper thighs, and somehow that made it feel better.
Paul was watching her as she did so, and seemed about to comment, when Sarah burst out, "Oh, look, the movie's about to start!"
That distracted him a bit. She needed to. For some reason, the walls of the car seemed to be closing in on her when he looked at her like that.
The film showed a scientist warning of the atomic monsters that were coming up from the Pacific Ocean to invade Southern California. The hero and his bespectacled female assistant listened closely as he proposed a radical solution involving a submarine and special radiation-suppressing ray.
Paul had draped his arm across the back of the seat, st some point, and she eyed his hand out of the corner of her eye as it slowly slid down to rest on her shoulder. She wasn't sure how she felt about that.
She scooted closer to him.
He was watching the movie, though, and not paying much attention to her. Just absently stroking her shoulder, now and then, affectionately, and maybe sometimes his breath would hitch as he cupped her breast with his hand. But maybe not, she thought deliriously, as her nipples tightened into tight little buds. Maybe not.
Sarah shook herself, then, realizing what she was doing ... was letting him do. She cleared her throat, to get his attention. Mouth half-full of popcorn, he looked a little ridiculous and, she thought, completely harmless. He chewed and swallowed, licking his lips to get the butter off. Her legs squirmed. She crossed them to keep them still.
"I'm sorry, Sarah. That was wrong of me. I know that you didn't want me to do that. You're a good girl, and good girls don't let boys do that to them."
That's right, Sarah thought.
"That's alright," Sarah said.