by: Dottie Taylor
word count: 930
“Of course, the hottest day of the summer,” Rachel took a sip of her beer leaning back into Ben’s chest. Within the course of the conversation Rachel and Ben had become wrapped up within each other as she shifted from his leg to between his legs sharing the edge of the bar stool with him. Her back against his chest, his right arm on the bar and his left resting comfortably along her hip and waist. He hadn’t noticed until she turned to grab her cigarettes off the bar and the warmth that had encompassed him was gone and she was taking his hand pulling him off the stool.
Waving the pack of cigarettes playfully in front of him, she smiled and he followed her out to the parking lot.
“Fresh air…” she said twirling around in delight, she precariously lost her footing and he reached out catching her against him.
“Whoa, slow down, Ginger,” he said as she laughed against him.
“You,” she said pointing at him playfully, “haven’t changed.”
“And that is a bad thing,” he said with a smile handing her a lit cigarette.
“I didn’t say that,” she replied taking a drag shifting her weight to lean against the wall of the building.
“And you have?”
“I don’t know, what do you think?”
“I think we’ve all changed.”
“That is an easy excuse.”
“It’s not an excuse, it's reality.”
“Yeah well…reality sucks.”
“So what are we going to do about it then?”
Ben shook his head at her, she knew his feelings, they'd been here before. He'd only returned for the funeral, not for her. As much as he would like to be attracted to her, he didn't work that way. It was fun to play, but when it came down to nuts and bolts, he needed something different.
Still Rachel persisted. “Come on Ben, how do you know if you've never given it a try?”
He laughed at her presumptions. “It isn't necessary to eat a pepper to know it's hot.”
“Ah, but what if you'd never seen a pepper before?”
“Then, sweetheart, I'd have a different tale to tell.” He smiled indulgently at her.
“Come, lets have a few more drinks, I'm not nearly drunk enough yet.” She giggled as she grabbed his hand, leading him back to the bar.
“Maybe, it's just me, but I think you've imbibed enough already.” But, he let her guide him back inside to reclaim their shared barstool.
“Malcolm, we'll have some tequila I think.” She called as they returned.
“Tequila? Are you trying to get me drunk?” Ben inquired, eyebrows raised.
“Me? Would I do that?” She asked guilelessly.
“I refer you back to our previous conversation.”
The band entered and started to play some Emo-Screamo song, but with enough of a beat, that soon, Ben and Rachel were gyrating on the dance floor. The night grew warmer and drier. They danced and laughed, singing along when they could, twisting their bodies when they couldn't, getting drunker as the midnight came and went. When they were near to falling down, Malcolm called a cab, snuffing them inside with Rachel's address.
When they arrived at the given address, the cabbie poured them into her ground floor apartment, where they continued to laugh and sing, peeling off shoes, jeans, shirts to drop on the floor. A trail led to the bed where they landed with a thud.
Ben laid sideways on the bed, laughing as Rachel crawled over his body to the top of the bed, climbing inside the cool sheets. She crooked her finger, calling him to her.
He shook his head, but followed her finger to climb inside the crisp sheets too.
She ran her hand up and down the breath of his chest, teasing and touching as she brought her lips to caress his, her tongue tasting his mouth. He pulled away, “I'm sorry Rachel,” he said through the pounding of his heart, “I really wish I could....”
“Shhhh....” she replied bringing her lips once more to his, “it's okay. We're just playing,” she grinned, and he made to push her away. “What? Are you afraid?”
“Not afraid, but I don't want you to get the wrong idea.” He put a few inches between their bodies.
“Lets get some sleep, okay?” He smiled, brushing back the hair from his best friend's face.
She faked a yawn, “sure....” and she again closed the distance between them.
“Shhhh.... relax...” and she kissed him again, tongue probing and teasing.
Ben had never slept with a woman before, knew he shouldn't be doing it now. It wasn't how he was put together. His heart pounded, what the hell was he doing? He thought about Kyle, trying to stop her seeking lips.
“God, Rachel, I can't....” He closed his eyes. She kissed his lips once more, begging him with her eyes.
His face burned with shame as he thought of Kyle, alone, waiting for him. Now he was completely sober, the effects of the tequila long forgotten.
Ben pushed Rachel away. “I have to go.... we shouldn't have let it go this far....” suddenly, he felt ill. He groped around finding jeans and shirt, slipping into his clothing with hurried hands.
Rachel listened as the front door latch closed. What had she done? Tried to sleep with her best friend, just to say she could? What did that say about her? She wanted to call out after him, tell him she was sorry, say it was the tequila, it wouldn't happen again. Christ, what was she thinking?
Ben shivered as he walked back to the hotel. It was his fault, maybe he was questioning his sexuality? If there was one thing he did know, he felt unsatisfied, wished Kyle had come with him. He entered the suite to find a suitcase next to his
“Hey,” Kyle called, “I got a few days off, decided to join you after all.” He stepped from the bedroom, and smiled at Ben. “Hope you don't mind?”
Ben's eyes landed on Kyle, and he smiled. “No, this is just want I needed. I'm going to grab a shower, I'll join you in a minute.”
In the shower, Ben washed away the alcohol and Rachel's scent. This is what he wanted, he was more sure of it than ever before. He rushed from the shower, exhausted from the days events. Funerals were always hard, add Rachel into the mix, and his day had been torture.
Kyle leaned across, grazing his lips. “Long day?”
“I can't even begin to tell you.” Ben smiled, “lets get some sleep.”
Kyle reached over, brushing the length of Ben's body as he turned off the light. “Okay, it's been a long day for me too, the flight was hell.” But Ben's body responded instantly to Kyle's closeness. The night was going to grow longer, but they had tomorrow too.
Wellllll.... I've never written anything like this before.... hope it sounds okay.... lol, but this is where my thoughts led me when I saw the prompt....