Read Vacant Online

Authors: Evelyn R. Baldwin

Vacant (page 6)

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I’m ashamed at my answer. “I drove. I didn’t really go anywhere. I was just running away, Emily.” I hang my head, embarrassed that I don’t even have a good reason for leaving her.

“I know it won’t make any difference now because you probably hate me, but I love you too, Emily. I have since…forever,and I’m sorry I waited so long to tell you.  I should have said it to you a week ago instead of running away like the coward I am. But, I can’t hold back any longer without you knowing how I feel about you. I’ve never been in love before, but I’m pretty sure this is what it feels like. I can’t think about anything else but you—how you laugh, the way you comb your hair, the way you smell right after the shower...God!”

Something stops my rambling, something soft, warm and moist. Emily’s lips are on mine and her arms are wrapped around my neck. She’s kissing me, and I don’t ever want her to stop.

Her mouth on mine is awesome!And I think about other things I want her to do with her mouth.

While there are a hundred synonyms for how kissing Emily feels, the only thing in my head the at the moment is “woo-hoo”. If I really think about what is actually happening, I’ll make her stop. This is wrong—not the kissing part, but the part where she’s willing to forgive all my sins and just take me back without a second thought.Now that I’m thinking about it…

Damn it!Now I’m mad. I pull away while her lips linger. “Emily,” I sigh, not really knowing where to start. “We have to talk about this,” I motion between us. She nods begrudgingly. It’s written all over her face; she thinks I’m going to reject her again.

“Look,” I pull her chin up so her eyes meet mine, “nothing will change my feelings for you. They haven’t changed in the last few years, and they won’t change in the next few, either. What I have to know, though, is howyouare feeling.”

She starts shaking her head, telling me not to worry, but that’s precisely the problem. Sheshouldbe angry with me.

“Emily, you should be upset with me. Yell, scream, hit—anything to let me know how you feel!” I’m almost shouting near the end of my declaration. I pull back and get myself in check before I completely lose it.

“Relieved.”

“What?” It’s a stupid question because I heard perfectly well what she said. It’s a stall tactic on my part.

“I’m relieved, Ethan.”

“Why aren’t you-”

“Do you know how many people there have been in my life who I cared about or who cared about me?”

I’m pretty sure I know the answer. I’m hoping it’s two, but know for sure it’s one—her mother—but I’m always careful not to bring up LouAnne. I just squeeze her hand, which I’m still holding onto like the piece of wood Leonardo DiCaprio was holding onto after his exit from the Titanic.

“Two, Ethan. Two.”

Now I’m relieved.

“And one of them can’t ever come back, but you did. You came back and I don’t care where you went or what you did. You are here now, safe.”

The tremble in her voice as she says, “what you did,” tells me she’s a little scared of what—or who—I might have done, so I hope I’m about to put her fears to rest.

“I just drove and slept in my car. I ate a few times, but honestly, Emily, the only thing I did was think about you and how much you mean to me. I was an asshole for leaving you. I didn’t take your safety or well-being into account and for that, I’m sorry. Youshouldbe upset with me.”

“I was scared, Ethan. At first, I thought maybe you were just blowing off some steam, off figuring out a way to tell me to leave, but when you didn’t come home that first night or the next morning, I started to get worried. Then Margie came by and said you hadn’t shown up for work.”

So, this is how Margie knows about Emily.

“I wasn’t really sure how much she knew, but I could tell she was surprised to find me here. She was so nice though. I told her how highly you speak of her and how much we appreciated the deal she and her husband gave on the car. Then I lost myself for a little bit and told her about you surprising me and taking me to graduation.” Emily pauses and smiles, then looks down as if she’s a little embarrassed.

“It was nice to have a woman to talk to again. It reminded me a little of my mom.”

Emily continues to tell me about Margie coming to the house. She said she cried for a little bit because she didn’t know what to do, that she’d been relying on me for so long. She didn’t know what she would do if I didn’t come home. She also tells me how Margie asked her about a job and what she liked to do. It seems they went to the public library and Emily applied for a position. She can work there part-time and still go to school. Apparently, she works until closing and that’s why she came home so late. Margie also got her a bus pass and rode with her the first time to make sure it was safe.

There isn’t a bouquet of flowers big enough for Margie right now.

~Home~

“Margie’s been coming by every night to make sure I have food or whatever. We would talk for a little while.” Emily stops and looks toward the door. “I’m guessing she hasn’t shown up tonight because she saw the car out front.”

I yawn, but not because I’m bored. I could listen to Emily talk forever about the six days I missed out on. I’m exhausted though and the days I went without restful sleep are showing.

“You are so tired, Ethan. We can do this tomorrow.” Her hand slides down my face as a warm smile takes over her features.

I stand to head toward the bedroom, and she turns to make her bed on the couch.

“Emily?” I question her. “I was hopingwecould go to bed.”  The, “well, duh,” look she gives me, and then returns to making her bed tells me she’s not understanding my meaning. “No, ummm…”

Why am I so nervous to say this?

I roll my eyes at myself.

“Like, together,” I say as I step to the doorway of the bedroom, “in here.”

Her eyes get huge, owl huge, and I realize my mistake.

“No! Not like that. I just….” I have messed up so much; I want to getsomethingright, so I pause and collect my thoughts.

“No more sleeping on the couch, Emily. We’re adults who love each other. I don’t want to be apart anymore. Come to bed with me and sleep. Nothing else.” I want her to understand that I’m not pushing. I want her close, but I don’t want her to be uncomfortable. This is a monumental step forward for us.

“You, me, pajamas, and sleeping…” I decide that perhaps a little lighthearted humor won’t hurt. “And maybe a little more of the kissing.”

~

I will behave.

I put on full length pajama pants—over my boxers—and t-shirt.

I get under the sheet, lie flat on my back and cross my hands over my stomach.

I wait.Patiently? No.

Emily enters the bedroom from the bathroom, and I can tell she's nervous. I'm not sure if her anxiety is because of the prospect ofsleepingwith me or that she is wearing a tank and panty set I'm pretty sure was intended for a toddler and not a full grown woman.

I can see her nipples.

And her…I'm definitely in trouble.

Do I tell her?

I have no idea what the protocol is for divulging sexual history to a prospective mate.

Mate?

I roll my eyes at myself again as images of Emily and me wrapped in fur coverings shoot through my mind. I’m running around with a spear shouting, “Me man, you woman.” It’s totally ridiculous that I’ve reverted to a prehistoric mindset. If I were a caveman, I’d have an easier time with the subject at hand. I’d just grab Emily and shove my penis in her vagina with nothing more than grunts. Being without conversational language skills has its advantages; there’s no way to explain everything.

My thoughts have veered off course, and I need to focus on the woman crawling up the bed like a cat hunting a mouse.

Even though I haven’t admitted it to myself, this is one of the reasons I’m so afraid of thisthingwith Emily. Sex and the topic of sex have always been off the table with her. We have never discussed previous experiences. I’d always assumed Emily was a virgin, but maybe it was just wishful thinking on my part since she came to me at a young age. I’m not naive enough to think that teenage girls aren’t having sex. I just didn’t want Emily to be one of them.

Being nervous about Emily’s sexual experience, or lack thereof, isn’t my only reason for pause. I don’t know whether or not I should divulgemyhistory. Part of me thinks it plays a huge part in things, while the other part of me says it doesn’t matter. I’m torn and don’t know which is right. I know honesty is the best policy, but will it do more harm than good in this case?

“Ethan?” I look up and see those expressive eyes. She needs my comfort and acceptance. Even though I made it clear we are only sleeping tonight, it seems like she is still trying to persuade me to do more. How else would you explain the tiny underwear and feline-like movements? If I don’t stop this dead in its tracks now, I know I won’t. Things will go too far too fast.

I open my arms in invitation, hoping she gets the message without hurt feelings. “Just lay down with me.”

~

Why is she giggling?

The haze from sleep is slowly lifting, and the morning sun shines through the window. I want to recap the events of last night before I open my eyes and look at the most important person in my life.

“Ethan?” Emily whispers.

“Hmmm,” I answer to let her know I’m awake. Her hand is on my stomach, under my shirt, where she strokes the hair just above my belly button.

“Can I touch it?” Emily breathes in a hushed tone.

My eyebrows furrow with my eyes still closed.

“Touch what?”

Another giggle.

Emily’s hand slides down a little further, and a finger dips inside the waist of my pajamas.

Whoa!

I grab her wrist to still her movement, but she tugs away. “I want this, Ethan. I want this with you. Please don’t make me beg you.”

The last thing I want is for Emily to connect negative feelings to sex with me, but I never came to a resolution last night. I am not sure how much to tell her, but I don’t think dwelling on it any longer will help me decide. I’m going to have to throw a bone and see her response.

“We need to talk, Emily.”

“Later.” It’s a bold statement on her part, but I can’t deny her as her hand moves under my waistband. I’m ashamed to say that I’ve denied her touch for too long, and I don’t want to wait for another second. Her lips move to mine, my mouth automatically opening. I want nothing more than to swallow her whole but settle for the caress of her tongue on mine.

Her fingers play under my pants, flirting with the idea of moving lower. My hands have been flat against the mattress until now, but I can’t stop their journey to her arms, then back. Knowing she is touching me intimately gives me the courage to do the same. My hand floats to the crest of her ass, gliding across her flesh. She moans, giving me the courage to extend my caress to her bare flesh beneath her panties. My touch is tentative because I want to get this right.

“Yes,” comes her strangled plea.

We continue kissing with nips and tugs of lips and teeth; my hand moves to the top of her thigh, then down to the dip where her ass meets her legs. She pushes toward me, her pussy opening to meet my waiting hand. I don’t have to search far before encountering slick skin, eager for my attention. Her breath stutters as my fingers begin to move, stroking her.

Her hand moves to touch me, her thumb rubbing my head, spreading the pre-cum. Her touch feels so good that I move my mouth away from hers, fearful I’ll bite her. Instead, my teeth graze her jaw then continue to move lower.  My mouth waters at the thought of tasting more of her. I’ve imagined what her nipples look like—taste like. I want to know that my fantasies don’t compare, even a small portion, to the reality. But this is not a fantasy. This is someone I care about, dream about, someone who matters and this has to be right.   

I pull her tank down, exposing her breasts. My mouth immediately latches on, suckling and lapping at the darkened peak. My fingers massage while my tongue caresses, and in only a few seconds, Emily is panting and writhing. Her head falls to my chest as she stiffens in my arms.  I’ve never felt so satisfied, despite not having my own release. But it doesn’t matter, because I know that this is only the beginning. This is the first of many gifts I hope to give her.  

~

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