I woke before the alarm clock sounded and turned it off without disturbing Joan. I love lying in bed beside her on a Saturday morning, savoring sensations of warmth and comfort that never seem so intense at any other time of day. I could spend whole mornings with her in my arms, hitting the snooze bar over and over, staying on the threshold of sleep, reveling in her heat and fragrance, savoring the best part of my life in nine-minute gulps. She, however, insists on staying unconscious till ten.
She was lying on her side, her head half on my shoulder, half on the pillow. She was uncovered to the waist, having, as usual, thrown the covers off her and onto me. Carefully, I shifted the double thickness of blankets, covering her without disturbing her. I kissed her forehead as I reached around to tuck the comforter under her. She smiled in her sleep, murmured and wriggled tighter into me, then settled in. I hoped she was dreaming about us.
This time together was made even sweeter by our recent separation. A year ago I convinced myself that she was having an affair. She stonewalled my attempts to confront her. No explanations. No remorse. No reassurance. No attempts to sooth my feelings or counter my suspicions. Just, "If you loved me, you would trust me" and a defiant stare. I withdrew. My employer offered a transfer to another state and I jumped on it. Two months ago I realized I was only hurting myself by staying away.
I found my cock stirring as I looked down her lush body. I had arrived late the night before, even later than usual. Her car wasn't in the drive when I arrived, but then, with traffic, weather, and the uncertainty about when I can leave the jobsite, the timing of my weekend commute is hard to predict. She pulled in as I was gathering the second load of luggage to carry into the house, and waved a pizza carton at me. Three microwaved slices and two glasses of wine later, we crashed into bed, without the usual "welcome home" lovemaking.
Stray strands of her hair tickled my cheek. My fingertips smoothed it over her temple. There were small flecks of something in her hair, tiny clumps and knots. I began to comb it with my fingertips, straightening and untangling, and remembering.
She wears her hair short now, tinted silver gray. When I first noticed her, in the dorm cafeteria, it was chestnut brown, parted in the center with loose braids over her shoulders. She wore it that way only the one day, but that is my first memory of her. I loved her with long straight hair. We would spend hours then with her lying on me, just kissing. Her hair would fall around us in a warm curtain, isolating us, focusing our attention into each other's eyes. The gray hairs were appearing, even then. When she turned thirty, defying fashion, she took it all the way gray, and short.
I unbuttoned her sleep shirt and exposed her free breast. The pudgy nipple was still a bud, just beginning to stretch as I breathed on it. Her nipples are a rare treat. Occasionally she responds to full contact with lips and tongue, but generally her nipples are far too sensitive for extended play. This morning they looked red and puffy. I resolved to restrict my touch to the underside of her breasts and the upper slopes. I noticed more flecks of that gluey substance on her throat and sprinkled down into her cleavage. There was a small bruise on the inside of the breast. I kissed it tenderly.
There is a sharp edge between arousal and awakening. If the timing is right, the sleeper, like my Joan, will incorporate sensual stimulation into her dreams. If technique and timing are precise and correct, it can lead to penetration and orgasm. If not, a sharp elbow and a cold shoulder. Guided by twenty years of trial and error experimentation, I began a walk on that tightrope.
I started slowly. I formed a fist with my left hand, and began rolling it firmly against her spine where it met the very top of the cleft of her asscheeks. She murmured in her sleep, but her breathing stayed deep and regular. I massaged deeply, then slacked off. Firm, then gentle. When she shifted backward to maintain contact, I knew I had her.
Ever so slowly, I eased her knee up onto my hip, paused as she adjusted her dream, then added gentle pressure to her mound with my right palm.