It was 3 AM and my bed sheets were a messy lump under my back. I was tired. It had been a tiring day — get up early in the morning, make breakfast, work eight hours, go to movies with boyfriend, have a screaming fight with boyfriend outside of movie theatre, throw drink at boyfriend, cry after being dumped, rip up photos of us as a couple ... all very tiring work.
Like I said, I was tired. Exhausted even. So why couldn't I sleep?
I knew why, even if a part of me didn't want to admit it to myself. I needed that bastard. I wasn't used to sleeping alone, and to top it all off, I was horny. My body was used to the rhythm of the nightly fuck, and now longed for it badly. I had tried to masturbate earlier, but his image kept flashing into my mind, and I would just get angry instead of pleased.
Well, I certainly wasn't getting to sleep the current way. Maybe I would spend the night up watching Gilmore Girls on DVD, crying into a tub of ice cream. That would certainly be cliché enough, and it was my plan as I got out of bed and turned on the light. But as I flicked on my light and reached for a shirt to fend off the night's cold, a photo caught my eye. It was of me and my friend Carrie, arms around each other, smiling with surprising sincerity. Her girlfriend that week (I'm barely exaggerating when I'm saying that she had a different girlfriend every week, proving that lesbians can be just as sluttish as any straight girl — not that that's a bad thing) was a remnant on the edge of the photograph. Cropped out.
And I remembered an offer, made in painful earnestness, a few years ago when we were in college.
Listen Natasha, I know you're straight as a ruler and all that, but if you ever change your mind ... and I do mean any time ... give me a call.
She had confessed she loved me back then, barely holding back tears, and I felt as though I had an unsavoury task thrust on me. Carrie had been my friend since middle school, and I had to break her heart. But that offer, that promise, stuck in my mind, even now.
There were a million reasons not to, but I called her.
After four rings, Carrie answered, with a confused mumble I couldn't translate into words.
"Natalie?" she said, her words slowly beginning more distinct. "Can't this wait until morning?"
I took a deep breath, knowing I had reached my Rubicon. "I want you, Carrie. Now."
When you think these events ahead in your mind, it's like you're living in a movie, where the audience has just seen this promise half an hour earlier. But it took some time for Carrie to figure out what I was talking about, and I had to jog her memory a bit. When she did realize it, she fell silent.
"Jesus, Natalie," she said. "You're a hell of a woman, you know that? After all these years of me trying to get over you, all of a sudden you decide you're not so 100% straight after all?"
"Ty left me," I said. "And I just don't want to be alone right now. I want to hold somebody."
"And I'm your next best choice, huh?" Carrie snapped.
My head sunk. "I'm sorry," I whispered into the phone. "I shouldn't have called."
There was a long pause. I wondered if Carrie had hung up. Then she spoke. "You're lucky you're so damned cute. I'll be over in fifteen minutes. But promise me one thing, okay? Now that you've called me and said 'yes', I don't want to hear any more 'no's. If we're doing this, it has to be real, and it has to be complete."
I nodded quickly, and then realized that we were on the phone. "Yes, yes, of course. Thank you."
Carrie laughed. "I should be thanking you, Natalie. Get ready to be ravished."
It was fifteen minutes of anxious, sudden worry. I spent most of it staring out at the streets, empty except for drunks stumbling home. I wondered what it would be like. I worried that I would disappoint Carrie, break her heart again. I wondered whether I was really straight or gay or just desperate. Most of all, I wished Carrie would hurry up and get here.
Strangely enough, then, her arrival set off another panic in me. I welcomed Carrie in with a nervous standard greeting, trying to act like everything was normal. She was obviously wearing last night's clothes — a crinkled dark green blouse and black mini-skirt. Obviously someone had been out clubbing. Her dull red leather handbag swung from her forearm. She wore bangs under her eyes and a wry smile.
"Carrie the emergency dyke, reporting for duty," she joked.
I sighed, trying to settle my nerves. Did I find Carrie attractive? I scanned her body surreptitiously, trying to figure it out. Her orangeish-red hair was loose, hanging down to about her shoulders, a kind of unsettling median between short and long. Carrie had broad shoulders and a brawny body, with shapely tits that jutted out of her chest like daggers. Probably not the Playboy centerfold type. But that wasn't the question. Did I really want to have sex with this woman?
"Listen," I said. "This is probably a bad idea. If you don't want to—"
Carrie closed the distance between us in two steps, and kissed me. Her lips were still cool from the night wind but tasted fresh. Her eyes were closed and she threw herself into the kiss — not her tongue, but her head, pressing up against me, nose to nose, brow to brow, serenely closed eyelid to wide open eye. In Carrie's kiss were years of longing, with the dread of years more, all revealed to me. It was a kiss that hope rested upon.
She broke from me eventually, leaving me gasping for air, her hands holding onto my shoulders. "What did I tell you about saying no," said Carrie.
I stepped back into my bedroom, Carrie's long arms draped around me. The worries, the uncertainty was all there, but the nerves were gone. This wasn't a betrayal of me or a life-changing decision. It was just two bodies doing what bodies do best. And if those two bodies happened to be female, then so what?
Carrie dipped me like a dancer and softly laid me down on my bed, on top of those twisted and tormented sheets. She dropped her purse next to the bed and pulled her blouse over her head, dropping it next to the bed. Then her bra, skirt, and panties. The moonlight didn't reveal much, just flashes of skin — a bare shoulder blade, soft creamy skin, a blush-red nipple.
Then she climbed on top of me. I shivered as I felt the warmth of her skin and the poke of her hard nipples through my thin layer of clothing. Carrie leaned down and nibbled at my ear, alternately sucking the lobe and batting at it with her teeth.
"I've played this out in my head so many times," Carrie said. "Just lie back and enjoy, Natalie." And then she kissed my ear, and kissed my cheek softly, until she reached my mouth. Carrie turned sideways and captured my lips with hers, her tongue spearing into my mouth and exploring its contours and its wet, sensitive sister.
Slowly, I began to respond. My tongue flicked up against hers, retracing the French-kissing practise of my teenage years. I groped up her flank until I found one of those firm, fleshy breasts, and slowly caressed it like I did to mine when I masturbated. Carrie groaned charitably into my mouth as her body shifted and writhed against mine. I was starting to feel hot, claustrophobic in my clothes.
Carrie arched her back up and my hands latched onto her breasts, clumsily pawing. I felt like a teenage boy. Like an awkward virgin again.
I felt her hot breath on my face, and then she straddled my waist, sitting upright. The streetlight outside the window revealed her nude body in full for the first time. It was like a work of art. She reached down and pulled at the old shirt I had thrown on. I took the cue and stretched my arms up, allowing her to peel it off me. Carrie unclipped my bra and tossed it aside. My nipples were hard little peaks, my small breasts aching, and I couldn't blame it on the cold.
Carrie gave me a quick, promising peck on the cheek and then slid down my body. She wasn't wasting time with a trail of kisses; she had her two targets, red-ringed and everything. Carrie latched onto my right breast and sucked with a surprising force, tongue pressing against my rocky nipple. With her hands she sought my shorts and panties and made quick work of them, pulling them down to my ankles.
We were nude together, and there were a thousand stimuli flooding my body at once. Every inch of hot flesh pressed against hot flesh was a separate image, a separate pleasure, and I wished I could stop and take them all in one by one, but all I could do was stand and look at the big picture. A very, very nice picture. Carrie scooped me up with surprising strength and planted me down in a sitting position. I began to shiver. In the instant we separated, my nervousness has returned to me.
Carrie was on her hands and knees, looking at me expectantly. I waited for her to move, but she was stuck like a gargoyle, her breasts hanging down in the moonlight. We stood there for what could have only been a few seconds, but felt like much longer.
"Spread your legs, Natalie," she said.
.... There is more of this story ...