I know this sounds cliché. I've been keeping it to myself for a very long time because I don't think anyone would believe me. See, everyone knows about Spring flings and Summer hook ups. There's nothing new or novel about it and it's almost become a rite of passage – if you haven't had at least one drunken spring break fuck you're missing out. But this was so much more than a drunken hook up. Sandy introduced me to passion like I've never known before ... or since.
I didn't think it would be exciting. I was 19 and home from my freshman year of college. My parents had decided that this year we'd visit a new beach in South Carolina – semi-private and only a few minutes' drive from the house of one of my mother's college friends, Anne. She had invited us down for two glorious weeks of sun, white sand and exploring a couple of famous landmarks. I had some interest in the history but expected that the beach would bore me. Even as we pulled into Anne's driveway and my younger brother cupped his hands to his ears to listen for the crashing of the nearby ocean, I was unimpressed.
It was humid; sticky in the worst kind of way – the way that makes sweat bead between your shoulder blades and stick your shirt to your skin as soon as you step into it. The relentless July sun was held at bay by a few lazy fleece clouds which drifted above the palmettos. I was glad to step into Anne's air-conditioned home and find a tray in her modern, white living room with fresh, cold meats and fruit, but even more glad when she showed us the two guest rooms where we would be staying, with a shared bathroom decorated in the typical beach theme. A glass block wall separated the shower stall from the rest of the bathroom, screening it from the view of the doors leading to our bedrooms – something I was thrilled by, since I expected I wouldn't get much "alone time" anywhere else in the house. I didn't mind sharing a room with my brother; although I'd long since been moved to my own room at home, it was only for a week. Still, I was used to masturbating whenever the urge took me, and that just wouldn't be possible here. At least I had the shower.
After lunch we left to explore the beach while my mother caught up with Anne and traded stories. My brother was quick to spot a couple of girls his age a little way down the beach and sauntered over to chat them up while I dug my toes into the warm white sand, staring down the sea as though it would tell me what to do. I wasn't that comfortable on the beach. My swimsuit wasn't eye-catching and I didn't care about fashion; my tan was more from bicycling around town than from sitting at the pool. I didn't see the point to it all ... and then she walked by.
I was transfixed, rooted in the sand, dizzy with the motion of the waves and her hips. Oh, I wanted to touch those round hips, kiss the delicious sliver of pale skin that showed between her boy-short swimsuit bottom and tank top, stay on the beach forever watching her move. She made eye contact, murmured a quick 'hi' and flicked strawberry-blond ringlets out of her eyes as she strolled away. I don't think I even returned her greeting, but my eyes followed her down the beach. When she was gone I stood senseless until the sun beating down on my bare shoulders was too much. I was sick with longing and splashed quickly into the surf, soaking myself and hiding the flushed cheeks that spoke of more than the day's heat.
By the time we got back to the house I desperately needed a shower. Anne said she'd planned a late supper for us, so I had plenty of time and excused myself quickly, claiming a desire to get the sea water out of my hair. In the safety of the shower I unhooked my bikini top with trembling hands and tried to wash the memory of her down the drain with the sand. I didn't even know her name. Worse, there was no one I could tell. My parents still thought I had a boyfriend back at school and although my friends sometimes poked fun at my virginity, I didn't think anyone knew the full truth. I hadn't even been sure myself, until that hot summer day.
The water was warm but it felt cool against the burning in my cheeks as I remembered her smile and shuddered with longing. As I mechanically went about lathering my body with soap my thoughts wandered over hers. She had been shorter than me, and I imagined bending close to her, her scent (in my mind, it was the scent of the sweet saltwater taffy sold by the beach) heady and delicious. Her lips, soft and full, meeting mine. I dropped the shower puff and sat back against the shower wall, letting the water run while my fingers went straight for my clit. It didn't take long, but I was just standing up to rinse the rest of the soap away when my mother knocked. I jumped guiltily and hurried out of the shower, praying no one noticed my not-so-innocent blush.
I shouldn't have worried. No one so much as said a word about my preoccupation for the next few days. My mother was thrilled to be spending time with her old friend again and my father had gotten it into his head that the best place for him to be was at the local golf course. My little brother, having been turned down by most of the local girls, spent his days mooning around the house proclaiming loudly that he didn't need girls anyway, and playing video games in Anne's well-appointed "rec room". Despite not having children of her own, Anne seemed to play host to many of the neighborhood families and had set up the room accordingly. My brother was in heaven.
I wasn't. I lost sleep and picked at my food and masturbated furiously in the shower. I went to the beach every day but didn't see my mystery girl. Finally the first Saturday came and I decided I couldn't take waiting on the hot sand for one more hour. In a futile attempt at distracting myself I headed to the city's small cultural district and spent my afternoon wandering around chunks of modern art on the sidewalks. I was contemplating a particularly curvy piece of metal and imaging the soft curve of the mystery girl's breasts under her tank top when a ringlet brushed my shoulder and a voice full of laughter spoke into my ear.
"Makes you hot, doesn't it?"
I jumped and stared open-mouthed at her – there she stood in all her tomboyish glory. Short ringlets framed a soft, almost cherubic face but for the wide, smiling mouth and sharp green eyes that spoke of mischief. She wore a pair of tattered denim shorts and a plain pink t-shirt which clung to her chest in the hot summer air and drew my eyes before I could regain control. Was she really talking to me?
She giggled and held out her hand. "I'm Sandy." Her voice had a hint of that soft southern drawl that I so often found annoying but in her it was almost sexy.
I stuttered and tore my eyes away from her perfect little breasts long enough to take her hand and shake it weakly. "Amy."
"You're not from here." It was a statement, not a question, and I nodded dumbly. Sandy. I hoped she couldn't see what I was thinking.
"No. We're visiting. My mom's college friend lives here. Are you? ... from around here, I mean."
"Yep! Mah whole life in this place ... can you imagine?" she giggled again and gestured grandly at the street, full of shoppers and families.
"Summer ends; they all go home. Gets boring 'round here come September. So I try to have fun while I got people to have fun with. Want to?" She winked at me and grinned, showing perfect white teeth against her coral lips.
" ... to what?" My heart skipped several beats. She didn't mean...
"To have fun, silly! C'mon. I'll buy you a drink. There might even be something new at the theater."
There wasn't, but Sandy bought me a cold beer anyway, without even asking my age, and we sat at an outdoor table at the bar watching the people pass. She was 21, she said, and loved summer because of the people – there for a week, sometimes a month – who she would befriend and keep in touch with all winter. She said it kept her from going mad. She wanted to do something big with her life – being a doctor maybe, and she didn't want to do it here. Still, she didn't hate the place. She knew many of the city's more notorious residents, and had a funny story about everyone. I didn't remember the time passing as I sat enchanted by her voice and her stories but we somehow worked our way through several beers and as many breadsticks as the waiter would give us. I was pretty lightheaded and I knew she had to be feeling the effects too. All I could think the entire time was how she would feel in my arms, and I swore she knew what I was thinking.
It was almost dark and the theater across the street was spitting out another loud, laughing group of teens when Sandy stood up, leaving her empty beer bottle on the table and grabbing my hand. I stared, startled, with half of my beer left. She snatched it out of my grip and plunked it onto the table soundly, proclaiming: "Whoops! Talked too long. Big mouth o' mine always gets in the way!"
She dropped a few dollars on the table, laughed at my startled expression, and yanked me out into the night. It was cooler now and the sunset was picturesque behind the buildings. Sandy pulled me firmly behind her until I tripped over my sandal and nearly fell; she caught me and we both burst into giggles.
"Where'r we goin'?" I slurred, and she stuck out the red tip of her tongue in response. A blush rose in my cheeks unbidden as the image of that tongue on my nipples shot through my alcohol-induced stupor. She didn't seem to notice.
"The beach! I want to swim!" she cried. "Last one there's a rotten egg!" She darted off, blond ringlets flying around her ears.
Despite my usual reservations about the beach, there was nowhere else I would rather be if Sandy was there, and I followed her sun-haloed crown of ringlets as she dodged between pedestrians and ducked under low-hanging bougainvillea draped over a garden wall, their brilliantly colored blossoms echoing the colors of the sky. The scene felt surreal and when the sidewalk ended in a sandy parking lot with the sound of the ocean beyond we sprinted up the dunes together, breathless and grinning. I couldn't stop myself at the top, and I didn't care. This time I was the one to grab Sandy's arm, and pulled her down into the fine white sand, rolling in a tangle of arms and legs that ended in her pressed against my body with her head on my breasts.
I stopped breathing for a few endless seconds, my heart pounding in my chest as I realized what I'd just done. Sandy didn't ask to be pulled into the sand. I was drunk and I had taken a chance. She wasn't into me like that. Was she? I couldn't recall her ever mentioning a boyfriend but that didn't mean she didn't have any interest in boys ... Was this worth it, if things were awkward between us now? Would it be worth it if I never saw her again after tonight? I closed my eyes and waited for her to get up; waited for the reprimand that I was sure was coming.
Instead, I thought I felt her nuzzle my breasts. I bit my lip but she heard the sharp intake of breath her motion caused, and she lifted her head and slid upward so that we were nose-to-nose. Everything in me was screaming danger and desire and I almost panicked, almost apologized and struggled out from under her hot, soft weight ... and then she kissed me.
I will remember that kiss forever. It set every nerve on fire. Her lips were firm and reassuring. She wasn't asking; wasn't experimenting. She knew, and when I knew that she knew, my body gave up all pretenses and responded by soaking my bikini bottom while she explored my lips and tongue with hers in ways that left no doubt in my mind: I wanted her so badly it hurt.
When she finally pulled back a few inches I saw the glitter in her green eyes and would have let her take me there on the sand but for the people. There were still swimmers scattered along the beach – thankfully, none seemed to have taken much interest in our little show, but my desire cooled slightly in the presence of others and I pushed Sandy to the side gently, sitting up and brushing the fine white grains from my ponytail. She saw the source of my concern with a quick glance around us, and smiled reassuringly.
"Let's go swimming." she whispered conspiratorially, and winked again. Stripping the pink cotton shirt over her head in one smooth motion, she revealed a simple bronze swimsuit which, despite being a single piece, showed off her lithe body in amazing ways. As she wiggled out of her shorts suggestively I followed her lead and dropped my own clothing into an awkward pile in the sand. My own teal bikini, so boring just last week when no one was looking, made me self-conscious now. She didn't seem to care – in fact, she seemed to like how it looked. She took my hand as we waded through the foamy shallows and into the dark water beyond. The sun was quickly disappearing, but the heat of the day lingered, as did the heat of our bodies as we pressed them together in the water. I shivered with anticipation, tasting salt on my lips and wanting to taste her.
Chest-deep, Sandy stopped moving and pulled me close. She wrapped her arms around my neck and tugged slowly at the bow that held my top, freeing my breasts from the wet, clinging fabric and allowing the top to float held only by the lower string. My nipples stiffened under her gaze and I trembled but her hand was steady as she ran fingers down my neck and chest, circling the sensitive points of my nipples expertly, teasing.
I pushed my hips against her thigh, rubbing slowly, enjoying the water lapping at my breasts and her fingers, pinching and circling and stroking my nipples into alertness, then dragging slowly, breathlessly down my stomach. She brushed against my bikini bottom and every nerve tingled. These new sensations left me gasping for breath and frightened me. I might have broken it off right there, run and never looked back, except that I wanted more. She seemed to realize this, and she stopped teasing long enough to tie my top back around my neck and do a lazy backstroke away from me in the direction of the shore.
"Water's not a very good lubricant." she observed matter-of-factly, and splashed me playfully with one foot.
I recovered some poise and dove after her, grinning, and tugged her under so that she came up spitting salt water at me and splashing.
"Fine," I said, and did a few lazy strokes of my own in circles around Sandy. "Let's get out of the water." There was no going back now. She had put the idea in my head, and I knew I'd never forgive myself if I didn't take her up on her unspoken offer.
"Your place, or mine?" she retorted, splashing me again. She turned and kicked off before I had time to reply, doing a strong breaststroke toward the now dark beach. A few lone couples strolled aimlessly near the tide line as we dragged ourselves out of the water.