Chapter 1

Caution: This Romantic Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Consensual, Heterosexual, Mystery, Safe Sex, Oral Sex, Slow, .

Desc: Romantic Sex Story: Chapter 1 - Keith is a research chemist. He turns to Jenna for help in his company's research library. When she overhears him referring to her as "nerdy" she takes offense, but his sincere apology wins her heart and they become first friends and then lovers. Jenna begins to experience a series of odd medical crises. Keith uses his skills as a chemist to uncover a sinister scheme directed toward the woman he now loves

"Don -- you wanted to see me?" Keith asked as he stepped into his boss's office.

Don handed him a memo. "We had a customer reject ten tank cars full of specialty product. Management wants to know what went wrong."

"Do we have samples?"

"They're on the way, along with samples of raw materials."

"I'll need to understand how the stuff is made," Keith replied.

"I have a reference." Don handed him a Post-it.

"I'll start looking this up."

Keith returned to his lab. He sat at his desk and began searching for the reference Don had given him.

"What's the panic?" came a voice from behind. Keith turned and regarded his lab partner, an olive-skinned young woman with raven hair. "Here, Paola -- read it and weep." He handed her the memo.

She let out a whistle. "We have to eat ten tank cars' worth of product. They're not going to be happy about this in the head office."

"Indeed they are not. Samples of finished product and precursors are on their way. In the meantime we need to familiarize ourselves with the process. Don gave me a reference which I am attempting to locate." He scanned his screen. "We have a copy in the Research Library. I'm going to head downstairs and check it out."

Keith waited for the elevator to carry him from the sixth floor of the Research Center down to the second. Referring to the note he scanned the stacks and located the one holding the book. Peering at the spine tags he located it and carried it to a table.

"Are you finding what you need?" Keith turned and saw a young woman. He regarded her -- she was tall and slender. She wore a mid-calf length floral print skirt, long sleeved blouse and a yellow vest sweater. Her face was oblong with a long nose, prominent jaw and medium lips. She had blue eyes behind thick-lensed glasses and wore her mid-back length, light brown hair tied in a ponytail.

"I think so," Keith replied. "Is there a copier I can use?"

"In the work room. If you need anything else, don't hesitate to ask."

Keith carried the book to the work room and copied the pages. Then he returned to the table and reviewed the material. He spotted the young woman sitting at a desk in an office. Walking to it he rapped on the door. "Excuse me..."

"Yes?"

"There's a reference in the bibliography to an article in the Helvetica Chimica Acta, 1960. Does the library have this journal?" He opened the book to the bibliography and pointed to the reference.

"I believe so." She grabbed a slip of paper and jotted the citation on it.

Keith returned to the library table and set book down. His cell phone rang. He slipped it from his pocket and answered.

"Hello?"

Keith -- it's Paola. The samples arrived.

"How do they look?"

Nasty. How goes the hunt?

"I'm getting close. I found Don's book. The material is pretty thin, but there's a primary source in the bibliography. There's a nerdy-looking librarian getting it for me..." He heard the slam of a stack of paper hitting the floor behind him. Keith jumped up and turned around.

"For the record -- I am not a nerdy-looking librarian. I am a nerdy-looking information scientist!" She turned and stalked away.

"Paola -- gotta run." He cancelled the call and headed after her, following her to her office. She had removed her glasses and was wiping tears from her face. "I apologize," he said. "I'm sorry -- it was a wiseass remark and I regret it."

"Go away."

"I mean ... I didn't intend it in a mean way. I ... I like nerdy girls."

She drew in a breath and clenched her jaw. "I think you should quit while you're still ahead."

"Right -- thanks for the help. I am sorry..."

He picked up the journal she had thrown onto the floor, found the citation and made copies. The journal and the book he placed in a return basket and headed back upstairs.

He set the copies on his desk. "Paola," he called, "how's your German?"

"Kind of rusty." She picked up the paper and scanned it. "Okay I think I see what they're going for." She regarded him. "You look kinda glum."

"I feel like an absolute asshole," he replied. "When I made that nerdy librarian comment, she overheard me."

"She?"

"Yes. Female." Paola winced. "I'm afraid my deportment was less than professional and I feel rotten."

"Did you make her cry?"

He sighed. "Yes I made her cry."

"Ooh -- worse yet. What are you going to do about it?"

"What can you do when you offend a co-worker? Especially one who was trying to be helpful?"

She shrugged. "What are the chances you'll cross paths with her again?"

"Well ... I have used that library a few times in my career here; and I have seen her in the building. As a woman, Paola -- if you overheard someone calling you nerdy-looking, what would it take to put it right?"

"Do you think I'm nerdy-looking?"

"Not in the least."

"I don't think it would bother me."

"It hit a nerve with her." He regarded his lab partner. "Let's make it a little more personal. Suppose you overheard someone calling you a Hispanic-looking researcher -- with derogatory overtones."

Her eyes widened. "THAT would bother me."

"What would it take to fix it?"

"I don't know ... A sincere apology ... chocolates or flowers." She smiled. "When my husband upsets me, it takes jewelry. Real estate is a very sincere form of apology."

"If it were a complete stranger? Would sincere contrition and a peace offering suffice?"

"If it were me, I would have to think about it. Keith -- we have to get going on this problem. Don's called about it already -- twice."


Keith pushed his shopping cart, looking for inspiration for dinner. He paused by a display of Asian entrees and selected a pack of soba noodles and a mix for miso soup. He headed toward the seafood counter for some shrimp and toward the refrigerator case for some tofu. Along the way he spotted some chrysanthemums. He grabbed a bunch and an inexpensive glass vase.

Arriving at home he trimmed the stems, filled the vase with water and set them in it. He boiled water for the noodles and soup mix, adding the shrimp and blocks of tofu. After pouring the finished soup and noodles into a bowl he sat with chopsticks and ate his dinner.

His alarm roused him after an unsatisfying night. He showered and dressed. Then, he removed the flowers from the vase, wrapped their stems in a damp paper towel and dumped out the water. He carried them to his car and drove to the Research Center.

Once inside he refilled the vase from a drinking fountain and slipped the stems back into it. He rode the elevator to the second floor. The research library was locked and dark.

He stepped back onto the elevator and carried the vase to his desk. Paola stepped into the lab, took her lab coat from a hook and slipped into it. "Where did those come from?" she asked, nodding toward the vase. "Some secret admirer?"

"I got these as a peace offering for that girl in the library," he replied. "I stopped there on my way in but the place wasn't open."


Keith finished assembling an apparatus on the lab bench. It was a miniature version of the plant that manufactured the rejected product. "We'll start adding reagent after lunch," he remarked to Paola. "We'll start with pure raw material and make sure the process is working."

Paola slipped off her lab coat. Keith picked up the vase and together they headed for the elevator. He pressed the buttons for the first and second floors. "Don't wait for me," he said. "I'm making a side trip to the library."

The elevator stopped at the second floor. Keith headed for the library and found her office. Through the window on her door he could see it was empty. On the door was a nameplate reading Jenna Cole.

Keith tested the knob and found it unlocked. He let himself into her office and set the vase on her desk. Sitting in her chair he found a pad of paper. Taking a pen from his pocket he began to write. Jenna --

"What are you doing here?" He looked up and saw her standing in her doorway.

Keith stood up. "I..." He gestured toward the vase. "Peace offering. I felt rotten all day yesterday over what I said. I hate seeing girls cry and I especially hate making girls cry. I didn't sleep well and I wanted you to know that I did feel badly about offending you. This has been a real learning experience for me."

She picked up the vase and sniffed the blooms. "I love chrysanthemums," she said. "You really felt badly all night?"

"I really did."

She smiled. "I had gotten over it. This was a sweet gesture. I accept your apology..."

"Keith ... Keith Lipson."

She extended her hand. "Jenna Cole. Consider it forgotten, Keith."

"Good. Thank you, Jenna. I wouldn't have blamed you if you hadn't."

"Don't beat yourself up too much. I've let things slip I wish I could take back."

"Thanks for being understanding. I really appreciate the help you gave me. It would've taken me forever to find that citation."

"That's why I'm here."

"Well ... I had better be..." His eye caught a stack of DVDs sitting on a bookcase. Above it was a calendar with photographs from China. "Jenna -- do you like Asian film?"

"Oh, I love it." She picked up the stack. "I borrowed these from the university library's media collection."

"Have you watched them all?"

"Yes. I was going to return them today. Do you like Asian film?"

"I love everything Asian. Have you ever traveled there?"

She shook her head. "No. I've had to do my traveling vicariously. Have you?"

"I spent some time in Japan."

"You're so lucky!"

"I had a Japanese girlfriend for a time."

"Really? Was she nerdy-looking?"

Keith chuckled. "No. She was uber-nerdy-looking. She was an exchange student when I was a senior in high school. After graduation she went back to Japan. A little later I got an invitation to go visit her. The trip cost me a small fortune."

"How did it go?" she asked.

"It was a disaster. She had taught me some of the language, but I was hopeless with it once I got there. The kids learn English, but not many of them learn it from a native speaker. Communication was miserable, and I'm afraid I made as big a fool of myself with her family as I did with you, yesterday."

Jenna smiled. "Was that the end of the relationship?"

"Indeed it was. I think we export more of our culture to them than we import of theirs. She mixed much more easily here than I did there. But -- I still love the culture."

Jenna sat on her desk, crossed her legs and hugged her knee. "I think the appeal is how exotic it seems to us."

"I think that's a big part of it."

"I like watching films that evoke that sense of the exotic," she said. "I like films done by Ozu. They're quite evocative."

"I don't think I've seen any of those," he replied. "I like Kurosawa's work."

She shook her head. "I'm not so fond of those. I think they're clich├ęd samurai flicks."

"Not at all," he replied. "Ran is his re-telling of King Lear. It's quite textured. And, Madadayo isn't like any of his other films -- not a single sword-fight in it."

She shrugged "I'll take your word for it." Jenna picked up her purse. "If you'll excuse me, I was on my way to lunch."

"Would you mind if I walked with you?"

"Not at all."

Keith escorted her toward the corridor and they headed for the elevator. "I need to duck in here," she said, gesturing toward the ladies' room. "I'll just be a minute."

Keith paced outside the restroom door. "Okay, I'm ready," Jenna said and they rode the elevator to the ground floor. He took a tray and selected a bowl of chili and some tortilla chips. Jenna picked up a ham sandwich and a diet soda.

He carried his tray to the cash register and handed the teller a five dollar bill. He found an empty table and waved to catch Jenna's attention.

"You said you got those discs from the university library," he said. "Are you a student? An intern here?"

"No. I've worked here full-time for three years now."

"I thought I saw you around here a few times. I don't get to the second floor very often."

"Where do you work?" she asked.

"Up on sixth. I'm one of the research chemists."

"I guess I don't have much call to be up on sixth, either." She took a bite from her sandwich. "I'm taking some night classes at the university. I have a Masters in information science and I'm working toward an MBA."

"Is the company paying the tuition?"

"Yes they are. It's a good deal."

Keith scooped the last of his chili from the bowl. He picked up his tray. "Ready?"

Jenna stood and followed him to return his tray and dump his refuse. He pressed the call button on the elevator. The doors opened and he punched the buttons for the second and the sixth floor.

The elevator stopped on the second floor. Jenna stepped out, turned and gave him a little wave.

Keith returned to his lab. "Was that your nerdy librarian you were sitting with?" Paola asked.

"Her name is Jenna," he replied, "and she is an information scientist, not a librarian."

"I can understand how you'd make the mistake, Keith. She does look like a nerdy librarian."


Keith sat at his desk in the corner of the lab. An email message appeared from his boss.

Where do we stand?

He sent a reply.

We're closing in on it

Soon he saw a reply to his reply

Sorry to be a pest but I keep getting calls from above. You and Paola keep up the good work.

He reviewed notes he had taken of some experimental runs. His phone rang.

"Keith Lipson," he answered.

Keith -- it's Jenna. From the library.

"Oh. Hi, Jenna. I didn't expect to hear from you."

We were talking about Kurosawa's films...

"I remember."

The Asian Film Society at the university is showing The Sea is Watching tonight.

"I don't recognize that title," he said. "Is it by Kurosawa?"

It's an unproduced screenplay that he wrote. Another director filmed it, posthumously.

"What's the Asian Film Society?"

It's a student organization for the appreciation of Asian cinema. They use one of the big lecture halls and show an Asian film every Friday night. I can get in for free with my student ID. I think for outsiders the admission is five bucks.

"It sounds like a cheap enough date," he replied. "I'd like to see it. Maybe I could pick you up after work and we could have some dinner."

Oh, Keith ... I appreciate the offer. My mother is expecting me for dinner.

"What time is the showing?"

Eight.

"Where does your mother live?"

In the Larson Park section. I can email you the address and directions.

"Can I pick you up at seven thirty and still have time to get to the screening?"

Yes, I think that will work. I'll see you tonight, Keith.

He hung up the phone, locked his fingers behind his head and leaned back.

"Who was that?" Paola asked.

"That was Jenna."

"The nerdy information scientist?"

"Yes, the same. She called to ask me on a date."

"She called to ask you out? I guess you did get things patched up with her."

"Yeah, I guess..."

"Francisco and I saw a film a while back. I can't remember the title, but it featured a French film director who believed the stronger the introduction, the more durable the relationship."

"Are you saying that reducing a girl to tears is the way into her heart?"

"You managed to get her attention."

"I guess I did," he replied.

"Do you like her?" she asked.

"I like her ... I like nerdy girls."

"Good thing for you ... and for her."

"I think Jenna has a pretty smile." He pushed back in his chair and stood. "We'd better get back to our little problem here."


Keith scanned house numbers as he cruised the Larson Park section of the city. Jenna had emailed the address and he had transferred the messaged to his phone. He drove past a brick house with a well-groomed yard and realized that was the address. Putting the car in reverse he backed up to the driveway and pulled in.

He rang the bell. A tall, lanky woman in late middle age answered the door. He recognized Jenna's features in her face. "Who are you?" she demanded.

"I'm Keith Lipson," he replied. "Jenna is expecting me."

"Jenna," she called.

"Coming, Mom." Jenna approached the door. "Hi, Keith."

"You didn't tell me you had a date," her mother said.

"I told you I was going to see a film at the school."

"I remember. You didn't tell me you had a date."

"Well -- I invited Keith to come, too."

"Remember -- back by eleven."

Jenna walked with Keith to his car. He opened the passenger door for her and then sat behind the wheel. "Home by eleven? Do you have a curfew?"

"I live here," she replied. "My mom says, if I'm living at home I follow the house rules. Mom will wait up for me and she hates staying up late."

"You should find a place of your own," he replied.

"This is the only way I can afford to repay my loans for college."

"Then, once they're paid off, maybe."

"Maybe."

"Are you an only child?"

"Yes ... well, I had a brother who died in infancy. After that, Mom became over-protective of me."

"You have to cut the ties sooner or later." Keith turned onto a boulevard leading toward the campus.

"Tell me," Jenna said, "what were looking for when you came to the library?"

"Oh -- details on a prep. We manufactured ten tank cars of a specialty product for an industrial customer ... it goes into the production of furniture foam. The customer ran an assay and found it was out of spec so they rejected all ten tank cars."

"Ouch," she replied. "That sounds like an expensive problem."

"Right. I'm working on figuring out why it's out of spec and how it happened."

"Have you figured it out?"

"We're stumped -- but don't tell my boss that. About all we know is, one of the raw materials got contaminated somehow. If we can prove it was at the supplier's plant, then we could fob the loss back onto our supplier -- though it probably will mean litigation and I probably would be called as a witness. At least my job on it will be done by then." He approached the campus. "Where is this film being shown?"

"In Sloacum Hall."

"Where's that?"

"Turn right here."

"Now ... Where to park..."

"I should've driven," she said. "I have a student parking sticker."

"Not a problem..." He craned his neck to look up and down the street. "Look -- vacant meter. That looks like it'll do nicely." Keith maneuvered into the spot. He read the legend on the meter. "Two hour metered parking eight to six daily. It's after six, so I guess we're okay."

"You must have good karma," Jenna remarked. "I never have luck finding parking spots like this."

"Good car karma," he added.

Jenna led him into the building. Outside a lecture hall some students had set up a card table. On one end a pair of coeds were checking IDs and collecting admission. At the other end was a tub filled with ice and sodas and some boxes of candy.

Keith found two seats near the center of the hall. He retracted the desk panel and sat back in the seat. Jenna retracted the desk on hers and sat clutching her bag.

"These seats aren't quite as comfortable as a theatre's," he remarked.

"Probably not."

"I do think films were meant to be seen in an auditorium, on a big screen -- not on a dinky television."

"I think it adds to the experience," she agreed. "I also think films are best enjoyed with a friend."

The film started, projected on the hall's screen from a ceiling-mounted video projector. Keith glanced at Jenna. Her long, pointed nose and solid chin gave her a strong profile. Full face, though, he thought, Jenna was almost pretty.

Halfway through the film she leaned toward him. "I'm going to see if the concessions are still available," she whispered. "Do you want anything?"

"Oh ... A Snickers if they have one." He began to reach into his pocket.

"Don't worry -- I'll get it. We can settle up later."

Jenna worked her way toward the aisle and headed out the door. Shortly she returned, empty-handed. "They had taken it all away," she whispered.

The film concluded and Keith escorted Jenna to his car. He started his motor and pulled out of the parking space.

"We have plenty of time to get you home before your curfew." he remarked. "What did you think of the film?"

"I liked it."

"So did I. I do find it a bit disconcerting that Kurosawa -- the great, man's man Kurosawa had a script for a chick flick featuring a hooker with a heart of gold tucked under his hat."

"I didn't think it was a chick flick," she replied. He drove a short distance. "Keith -- I need something to eat."

"Something to eat?"

"I'm feeling a bit poorly and I think having something in my stomach would help."

"Can you wait 'til we get you home?"

"I don't think so."

"There's a Webster's up ahead. They're open twenty-four hours. Want to duck in there?"

"Okay..."

Keith helped her from the car and held the door for her. "Two?" asked the hostess. "You can sit anywhere."

He sat in a booth and Jenna sat across from him. A waitress came and set two glasses of water and menus before them. "Shall I give you a moment?" she asked.

Jenna scanned the menu. "I'll have a bowl of the macaroni and cheese."

"Coffee for me."

"Thank you." She turned and left.

"I hope they hurry," Jenna said.

Keith checked his watch. He checked it again. Ten minutes elapsed, then fifteen. Twenty.

"What is taking so long?" Jenna asked.

"I'll go find out."

He arose from the booth and located the hostess. "Our order seems to be taking a long time," he said.

"Let me check on it."

He returned to their table. Jenna was supporting herself on her elbows and clutching her forearms. Color had drained from her face, her lips were white and she was trembling.

Keith knelt beside her. "Jenna -- are you diabetic?"

"Uh-huh," she replied, nodding.

"Are you having an insulin crisis?"

She nodded again.

Keith located the hostess. "I'm sorry," she said. "Your waitress forgot to submit the order. We'll have it for you as soon as possible."

"We need something right now," he replied. "Some orange juice or soda, right away."

"What sort of soda?"

"Anything -- Coke, Pepsi, ginger ale -- so long as it's full of sugar. Nothing diet."

"I'll bring it right out."

Keith returned to her and knelt beside her. He took her hand, held it and patted the back of it. She felt cold and clammy. "Hang in -- she's bringing something."

Their waitress brought a glass of Coke and set it on the table. "Oh, my God -- is she all right? Does she need an ambulance?"

"Drink this down," Keith said, slipping the straw between Jenna's lips. She began sucking and swallowing the fluid. "She's having a diabetic crisis," he said, addressing the waitress. "I think once we get some sugar into her she'll snap out of it."

Jenna drained the glass. Keith continued patting her hand. "Come on ... soak up those sugars."

Color began to return to her face and warmth to her hand. Her trembling subsided. "I'm feeling better. Thanks."

"Do you still want your macaroni?" Keith asked.

"I think I should."

"We'll bring that right out," the waitress said. "I'm very sorry for the delay."

Keith returned to his bench across from her. "Jenna -- you ought to wear a bracelet or something."

She tugged at a silver chain around her neck and from under her blouse withdrew a small Medic Alert pendant. She turned it over and he saw it read, Jenna Cole, diabetic. "I meant something more obvious."

"I don't want people to know," she replied.

"It's nothing to be ashamed of."

"Already everyone thinks I'm a nerd. I don't need them thinking I'm a sickly nerd." She looked up at him. "How did you know what was wrong with me?"

"My mother is diabetic. I've seen my share of insulin reactions."

"You knew what to do. Thanks. If I had been out on my own I'd have been in big trouble."

"Is that why your mom waits up for you?"

"Yeah ... She worries about me."

The waitress set down a bowl before Jenna and coffee for Keith. He watched Jenna consume her macaroni with enthusiasm.

She pressed her hand against her stomach. "I'm feeling much better, now."

"Then we had better get you home."

Keith drove back to the brick house and parked in the driveway. He escorted her to the porch. "I had a good time," he said.

"So did I -- except at the very end."

"It wasn't your fault."

"Unless you've experienced it, you can't know how uncomfortable..."

The door opened and Jenna's mother regarded her sternly. "You're late."

"Jenna had an insulin reaction," Keith explained. "We had to stop and get some carbs into her."

"How did you let that happen?" her mother asked. "What -- did you misread a finger poke or something?"

"I don't know."

"You have to be more careful, Jenna. If something like that should happen while you were behind the wheel..."

The front door closed and Keith stood, staring at it. "And good night to you, too," he said and headed for his car.

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Story tagged with:
Ma/Fa / Consensual / Heterosexual / Mystery / Safe Sex / Oral Sex / Slow /