The crack in the door, a short story by Amalova. Date added: 2008-02-20. Times viewed: 7400.
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- Intro: Alex invites Cheryl round to his studio to sing on a track he's written for her. Both get more than they expected... Het, SoloM
- 'That was great!'
'I'd like to do it again.'
'No need at all, it was fine.'
'No, I'd really like to...'
'Honest! It's fine. Listen...'
A click and the track is cued-up; he presses 'play'. Cheryl listens intently as the music starts in her headphones. He adjusts a few levels, adds a little more reverb. She closes her eyes in concentration, biting her bottom lip in anticipation of the slightly flat notes she feels she sang. He watches her and smiles, knowing she was quite perfectly in tune, that the phrasing was spot-on. After a mild grimace, her tensed shoulders drop and she relaxes, finally accepting that his appraisal was an accurate one. They exchange a knowing glance, and their eyes maintain contact for a little longer than he feels comfortable with. He loves it, but knows he must break it.
Alex had asked her over ostensibly to sing on a track he'd written, knowing she would say yes like she always did. He wrote the song just so he could be near her. Nothing more than that: just wanted her to be here with him. He felt so alive when she was close to him; his skin tingled whenever they brushed against each other. She was very pretty, very intelligent, very sexy, had a beautiful voice, and he knew she liked him. It was an impossible, irresistible combination. He wanted to touch her, to kiss her and his heart ached for her. But there were complications. He had a partner, Sophie, who lived with him and though she was at work today, this was her house too.
Things had been a bit rough between him and Sophie lately: she'd had an affair not many years ago, and though getting through that had initially made them stronger, they were drifting apart again. Being in a band hadn't helped: he was always on the road and it was very late at night when he eventually came home. She worked 9 to 5 and had taken on so many pastimes to fill the empty evenings when he was away, that even when he was at home she was out. There's an old Be Bop Deluxe record that he really liked that went: 'Without love - we are like ships in the night'; a song that now suited their relationship perfectly. Still, he was 'a stayer' and was loyal; he believed in sticking to what he knew, understanding that all relationships go through cycles and that good times, with a little work, could be just around the corner. He also hated, and was afraid of, change. It was coming though; it had just left the station, was picking up momentum, and would soon be bearing down the line - towards the spot to which he was now chained - at bullet speed.
Today he would again be close to Cheryl, would watch her covertly as she worked and would try to make her laugh at every opportunity. She shone brightest when she laughed. Alex thought of his life as a huge, rambling house, the best room of which he saved for her. He filled it with her, piece by piece, flung open the window when she was near him so that her light and sound flooded in. In this room Cheryl lived for him, on his terms, within the parameters of his life. He saw that the door may be open to him, but he was afraid to attempt entry for several reasons - fear of rejection, his old fear of change, fear of causing upset. He chose to stay outside, preferring to watch through the crack in the door. It was all so secretive, almost 'creepy', though he would have scoffed at the suggestion. He took pieces of their conversations, snapshots of her body, and wove sensual stories, chance meetings, impossible happenings with them. He wrote songs so vague that no-one would see them both in the lyrics; songs he played over and over, creating his own reality from the clues they gave. Songs like the one they were working on now.
The track ends in her ears; another one about him and her, but today the references are so perfectly weighted that she should be left with the tiniest clue she was the inspiration behind it. Another part of the game.
'Cup of tea?' he ventures, slapping his palms down on his thighs.
'I'd love one!'
She closes her eyes as she speaks, and takes off the headphones, a satisfied smile on her face.
They leave the attic, home of his small recording studio, and start the twisting climb down the narrow, wooden steps. She goes first and he looks down lovingly onto the swaying blonde hair and slight, square shoulders. They are both barefoot. She loves the feel of the floor and the stimulation it gives her, whatever the surface; enjoys the direct interaction of the earth with the soles of her feet. This helps her to be aware of the forces of gravity acting on her and that is why she can stand so beautifully tall, elegant and mobile; it also heightens her awareness of the present, the moment she is in - or that's what he thinks she'd said. He'd removed his socks too to see if it worked but his feet were just cold - she'd laughed at him. Another of those laughs he loves so much; the discomfort was worth it.
He pauses by the first-floor bedroom door.
'Get the kettle on. I'll be down in a mo.'
Cheryl had sung for him several times before, often making the drinks, sometimes even a snack, and knows where nearly everything is in the kitchen. He goes into the bedroom and straightens the quilt, picks up the pants from the floor and aims to throw them in the wash basket. Just in case. He knows it won't happen, knows more than anything that he hasn't the nerve to do it in this bed, in their bed, but... well, you never know. But no. Still, he makes the way clear for it, makes the pathway deeper, wider, more likely to be trod; it makes the longing and the denying even more sweet. When she has gone he'll come running up the stairs and close the door and curtains. He'll take off his clothes, slowly, in front of the mirror - his hands will be hers - savouring every undone button, every shed layer, till he is naked. His fingers will tease like he imagines she would tease. He may take the cup she touched with her lips and kiss it, press it against himself - or even pull back his foreskin hard and squeeze rhythmically till he milks his sperm into where her lips have been. Or, even more daringly - the rattling of spoons in cups, the rumbling of the electric kettle, and her distant ringing voice all tell him she is occupied downstairs - he may even do it quickly now... He is certainly hard and ready enough.
The future is always an unpredictable thing. It is rarely in our power to choose what happens next to any degree of certainty; much like the way weather-forecasters are unable, even with loads of data at their fingertips, to say what tomorrow will bring. He has created a situation, based on the data to hand, where he is certain he is in control. He knows he's simply, harmlessly, teasing himself: he has her company, he has the time to savour it, he is happy. Today, just like those other times, she will soon go home and then, for him, release will come. But he feels more strongly, each time she sings and then simply leaves, that it is not enough to satisfy him. He needs a bigger thrill and is certain he has the time right now. But certainty is a fleeting condition.
His fingers venture into his pants but a creak on the stairs makes him stop. He slips the hand out, smoothes down the last ruffles in the quilt and keeps still, listening. Another sound, then another, then his name is called. He stays quiet; doesn't know why he can't speak. Two more steps and she'll be on the landing. She moves slowly, carefully, as though carrying something. He hears a faint chime, like the toll of a distant church clock, as the china mugs kiss each other.
'Alex?' she calls again.
This time he answers:
'In here, won't be a minute...' he starts to say, but the door in the corner is nudged open a little more and she is standing with two cups of steaming tea.
'You were a while... thought I'd bring them up,' she adds, looking appraisingly round the one room in the house she has never entered.
Sunlight beams in through the open curtains, spotlighting the cream quilt on the pine bed. The ceiling is high, the walls too are cream; her strongest impressions are of light, space and order, which somehow cause her to breathe in deeply through her nose. He turns and sits on the bed. Cheryl joins him tentatively, gauging the spring in the mattress, so as not to spill anything. She passes him a cup, then, wrapping both hands around hers, she takes the slightest sip, more air than liquid. She wouldn't be sitting there without the cup, he thinks - it gives her a reason for sitting and a shield too: to sit there next to him would be too obvious, too provocative without the tea; tea makes it acceptable, civilised.
Her eyes are different though, somehow softer, and he feels uncomfortable, yet very turned on. His cock is swollen, so much that he has to adjust his sitting position. She takes a more substantial sip, lowers the cup with one hand, and the free hand falls to her side, brushing his leg. She is looking at the floor, concentrating on one bit of fluff that he now focuses on too. He can hear her breathe. Then she turns to him suddenly and kisses his cheek. He freezes, closes his eyes. The moment he craved but dreaded is here. How to continue? He googles his conscience but for the moment it is offline.
Her breath is warm on his cheek, now coming in shallow, almost silent waves, and he feels her lips seeking out his. His head is pounding, heart beating hard. In unison they reach to the dressing table in front of them, and put down their cups on the two circular, black-slate, his-and-hers coasters that always sit there. Except for the desultory chirps of a bird perched on the telephone cable outside the window, there is silence, and they sit for a moment fearing to make the first move in case it is wrong, each anticipating what the other might do. The bird suddenly takes flight, its shadow moving across the quilt - too fleetingly for their eyes to consciously register, but the slight flicker across her pupil is enough to elicit an end to the equilibrium in the room. She makes a sudden, unexpected movement - her right hand touches his groin; lightly at first then firmer, slim fingers tracing the length of his stiffness through his jeans. She looks down disbelievingly at what she is doing, then almost timidly up into his face, again biting her lip as she did when in doubt in the studio, asking for his approval.
He tacitly gives it; instinctively he undoes the top button of his jeans to relieve the pressure he feels. Taking his cue, Cheryl slips off the bed and between his legs till her knees are on the floor, simultaneously tugging and pulling open his button flies. Freeing his cock from the confines of his pants she pulls back the foreskin and surrounds the hard tip with her lips. Holding him in her mouth like a fat, pink cigar, she pulls his jeans and pants to the floor, then yanks them off so he is naked from the waist down. She pushes him back on the bed and takes him fully, deeply in her mouth this time, tickling and caressing his balls. He opens his eyes, stares at the wooden ceiling that he and Sophie had spent an age fitting. They had been so close in the first few years after they moved in, working side by side in all their spare time, trying to get this old house into shape; now he is cheating on her, deceiving her, and he feels his erection start to fail. But the wall of guilt his memory creates is neither high enough nor strong enough to hold back what will follow; it is merely cosmetic, like the pine boards that hide the cracked and sagging ceiling above his head. He props himself up on his elbows and watches Cheryl's movements, strongly aware of where he is: momentarily appalled yet still thrilled by her hunger.
Their eyes meet one more time and her motions slow to a standstill, as if she feels his hesitancy transmitted along his shaft and is awaiting his instructions. Her lips, formed into a kiss, rest right on the tip; her tongue, barely moving, gently plays across the hole. In his head the silent hiatus is smashed by the deafening sounds of rending and splintering as one future is destroyed and ripped out to make way for a new one; after the longest pause, he brushes her cheek then gently pushes her head down with his right hand, encouraging her to continue to suck him. He pulls her T shirt over her head, forcing her to release her sucking grip, unclips and discards her bra and holds her firm breasts in his hands. He tweaks her nipples to hardness and closes his eyes, enjoying every sensation she gives his cock with her hands and tongue.
He's again in her mouth, she is fucking him with it, but her hands are undoing her jeans; he senses her pulling them down, feels the urgency of her need to be naked with him. He wonders if her knickers came off with her jeans, tries to imagine her, uncovered: is her pubic hair blonde too? Does she shave neatly or completely? He pulls his T-shirt off and he is also naked... not the masturbatory nakedness that he expected, but a real, sexual nakedness that he thought he would never know with her. She comes up from his cock, licking, sliding up his body. Her breasts stroke past his erection and soon her mouth is on his, her legs are astride him. She is naked - he longs to see her bare cunt, needs to taste her. He holds her buttocks and pulls her up towards his face; she's walking on her knees, higher, and higher, over his belly, up his chest, till she is astride his face. His tongue teases her clit, for what seems an eternity, then he pulls her to him, tongue plunging into her, penetrating her, licking her.
'Oh God! Ohhhh... Feel how smooth I am... I trimmed and waxed especially for today, praying that you'd do this. God! How long I've waited for you. Fuck me!' Then she whispers, 'Fuck me with your cock'. There's a hint of a threat in the tone now, which thrills him enormously.
She positions herself over his erect penis, till her lips meet and are parted by the tip of him. Their eyes are locked together and she searches his face for the slightest change that will guide her in bringing pleasure to him. Slowly she presses her wetness down onto him, forcing his foreskin back as he enters her. Just the tip, then out again.
'More?' she questions him.
'Oooh, more, please, oh... Cheryl!' He says her name and it thrills him almost to orgasm.
Again she pushes down, this time a little more then all the way out, till the deep-red glans is waving freely. Another push down, and again, increasing the depth of entry each time, and his cock is soon glistening full length and he is ready to explode. She pulls away slowly and he feels her muscles force him out of her. A single translucent thread of her juice is all that joins him to her and they both focus on that glistening bond, watching it sway and stretch. She pulls away till the thread breaks, then forces herself down on him again... but stops agonisingly half way. In his fantasies he always took control, but this is better than anything he'd ever imagined.
'God, you're good!'
He reaches up and pulls her tits to his mouth in turn, sucking and biting her nipples, feasting on her. He catches a glimpse of movement in the corner of his eye and realises he can just see them both reflected in the dressing-table mirror: her gorgeous arse moving up and down; sees the base of his cock and his balls as her oscillations alternately expose and sheath him; and the sudden reality of it all sends him close to the edge of orgasm once again. Cheryl reaches down and touches herself, gently at first, then more firmly. Her cunt tightens on his cock and she sits down on him, hard, with all her weight, forcing him deep inside her. Her muscles massage him and he knows he can't last long now... he knows she too is close - her eyes are closed and her fingers are moving quickly, urgently, on her clit.
'Oh... Cheryl... uh... me... too... Oh, God ...don't stop! Don't stop!'
All the pleasure in his body, all the universe, rushes to that one point, the tip of his cock, then spreads along the length of it, through his balls, groin, arse and stomach, rising up into his brain with a sweet, hot, delicious explosion that racks his whole body, till the pleasure fills the whole world. Wave after wave numbs him to his extremities. At the center of his being he feels his cum rising up, holds it back to the last moment, savouring the sheer joy of it, till he can restrain it no more and he pumps it into her with deep thrusts. She falls onto his chest, shaking, moaning. They hold each other tightly, her cunt wrapped around his stiffness, arms wrapped around him, mouths kissing, tongues playing. It was wrong, it was fantastic, it was inevitable.
The voice is very real, as if a singing and dancing Technicolor Cheryl just burst into an old black and white silent movie.
'Er... what? Sorry... just a...'
Now he is fully back in the present. Blood pumps noisily through his eardrums. He is still standing; his hand is in his pants, the end of his engorged cock is not. A scatter-pattern of creamy semen is splashed across the matching quilt cover, darkening as it soaks in; a psychologist would be asking what you saw in it. He whips his hand out, pushes his swollen tip painfully back in, quickly adjusts himself, and then turns away from the sweet source of the voice to hide the bulge. He pulls his T-shirt down over his open jeans to hide the dark patch of cum being painted inside his pants by the last escaping drops. Please don't come in. Bending over the bed he again smoothes down the quilt, tries to rub the remaining thick globules into the material.
'You don't take sugar any more, do you?' she says, somehow in the distance. She repeats the words, but this time it's more of a statement than a question. His mind is coming into focus again, racing heart slowing. She is standing in the doorway, tray of hot drinks and a selection of biscuits on a plate. Alex finds himself momentarily wondering where she found the chocolate digestives.
A dark grey, black and blue anticyclone spirals inside his head, depressing his senses, obliterating all coherent thought. He finds it hard to speak without giving away his present breathless condition; all he can do is look back down at the bed. With his right hand he smoothes down what is already smooth, suddenly realising he is holding a pair of bunched-up pants in the other. He awkwardly waves them in the air then flicks an invisible bit of fluff off the bed as if to explain what he's doing. She gives him a quizzical look.
'Er... no. No... sorry, I was just... sorting this... I was miles away. Take 'em on up and I'll be there in a moment. Not much more to do is there?' Still he daren't look at her.
'No, just a couple of lines I want to improve... I was thinking, I don't like these lyrics...er...' and she sings:
'He holds all the cards, dictates the game, knows no shame...
She just plays along, sings her song...'
'I want her to be stronger,' she continues, '... and he should feel some shame or he's not human... no-one would care about him, connect with him! Come on, let's get it done while it's fresh in my mind... then we can get on with some serious shagging!'
She's laughing, her cheeks a little red. He forces a smile. In his mind, the gap between the shagging and the laugh is perhaps just wide enough to let through the idea that maybe... he only has to ask... mmm...
At that instant the bullet train arrives without warning, hits him, cuts him to pieces and flings the fragments in slow motion through the rushing air to splatter on the bare canvas of the creamy walls.
How long had she been there? Was she outside, all the time he was... doing that? Spying on him through the crack in the door? She was watching! Oh God! The words screech and squeal through his brain like the sound of braking iron on iron.
Still the uncertainties tear at his scattered guts. Was the laugh to let him know that those words will now always only be a joke; and he will always only be a joke to her! His ego would never allow himself to think so, but he needs to think of something. Quickly! Surely, if she'd been spying she'd be running out of the house now, slamming the door behind her. He tries to remember exactly how she said that last line, but his head is still far from clear...
'Think man! Is the shagging reference just a bit of fun, a bit of harmless flirting like we sometimes do? Or did she emphasise serious because she's tired of playing my 'Come over and sing on my track' game, and now she really wants to get it on - maybe right after these few takes?' That must be it. He hopes his recently spent cock won't let him down.
Then the caboose, carrying the third unspeakable option, rumbles over his mangled remains as the train finally comes to a shuddering stop.
'Or was the stress on shagging... as opposed to wanking... meaning she did watch me, probably horrified... or - what's worse, what's fucking infinitely worse - amused! And I'll always just be a fucking wanker to her now. Oh, God... then she'll tell all her friends what she saw...' and he pictures them all: nudging; giggling; eyes wide with disbelief; then falling about laughing. Laughing at him!
He vaguely remembers he needs to speak.
'Oh, yes, good idea,' he nervously laughs back. 'Ha! Let's get on with it then... er, the recording I mean... ha!'
She shakes her head and smiles, then remembers something, 'Oh, I used the last of the milk.'
'I'll...' His head is still spinning and the banality of her last words throws him for a second. 'I'll nip down to the shop and get some. Fancy a walk, bit of fresh air?'
'Er... the tea!' and she holds the tray a little higher to get his attention.
'It'll be just right when we get back. I really need to clear my head... coming?' The last word conjours up the final passion-filled images from his fantasy and he winces inside, then colours a little more as his eyes fall on the dark patch on the quilt. She stands a moment, as lovely as ever, her quiet poise making his invasive, sordid act seem infinitely worse to him.
'No. I'll run through that dodgy bit again, try to come up with some words.' She laughs, 'I could be some time... not my strong suit, lyrics.'
'I'll only be ten minutes, so don't worry - I won't expect Shakespeare.'
She smiles an enigmatic smile before she leaves, giving him not a single clue as to what she saw. He hurriedly fastens up his jeans and adjusts his now shriveled cock in his wet pants to lessen its outline: in this at least he is successful. He sees her move across the slender vertical bar of space that separates the open door from the jamb, hears a creak and the light pads of her naked footfalls upwardly negotiating the tricky turns of the attic stairs. He holds his head in his hands.
'Oh my God; what a fucking wanker I truly am,' he whispers under his breath, before rubbing at the stains on the quilt with yesterday's underwear. He tosses them angrily into the wash-basket and goes across the landing to the bathroom to wash his hands. Now back on the landing he pauses; he can hear the faint spillage from the headphones she now wears. After checking his pockets for cash, he runs down the stairs, across the living room and opens the front door. It suddenly strikes him he should have asked if she wanted anything from the shop. He reaches the top of the two flights of stairs in seconds but hesitates, not sure if he can face her after the embarrassment of the last few minutes. He peers again through the crack in a door and can't believe what he sees.
She is sitting in his revolving office chair, head thrown back, headphones on, oblivious to her surroundings. Her right hand is between her legs, rubbing at the dark blue denim, eliciting tiny gasps of pleasure from her beautiful mouth. Her left hand roughly pulls and twists her nipples in turn. Did she see him masturbating and it turned her on? Has she no clue what he did but she is simply turned on just by being here? Couldn't she wait till she got home? Does it matter? She unbuttons her jeans and slips her slender hand down, down, into her panties and she moans loudly. The material between her legs bulges rhythmically as she finds her target. He moans too and his recently engorged cock aches uncomfortably as it starts to swell again. His first instinct is to rush in and join in, but, for once, good sense takes control. Remembering how he felt when he thought she had caught him at it, he tears his gaze away and reticently tiptoes back down the creaky stairs. The colours in his head swirl again, but this time they are light, bright and optimistic.
'She fancies me. She fucking fancies me!' His muddled, improvised life suddenly has form. For the first time ever he has a solid plan. 'Tonight I will talk to Sophie.'
He takes a mental step back and sees his life in perspective. Their relationship is tenuous to say the least and their lovemaking is cool and sporadic. It is time. It's the best for both of them. He imagines the reality of what he has just mooted, sees her sitting on the edge of their sofa, wringing her hands, tears flowing freely. Or will she nod her head, resignedly, tell him she's been considering it too? Either way he has to do it. He can't cheat on her, except in his head, yet he cannot resist the path that now beckons him.
He steps lightly from the old house into the quiet street. The stone terraces look fresh and different. Each detail is sharper as if washed by a sudden downpour, but it is his mind that is suddenly sparklingly clear. He affords a last glance up at his attic window and smiles at the thought of the sweet pleasures being secretly enacted behind the grimy glass, imagining that soon he will share them with her.
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