Saturday, October 30, 2010

Chapter 8

Is this how a surgeon feels? Andy wondered. She sat in a chair near the window, a selection of local magazines arranged on the low table next to her. A room service menu was open on the desk. Detach yourself emotionally and ignore the beating heart you hold in your hands?
____

Sidney was in the bathroom. That alone made him feel like a fool. I pay for her to come here and fuck me, and I can’t change in front of her? He fixed the collar on his suit, adjusted the cuffs of his jacket. Everyone said he was too nice. Maybe she appreciates it.

He was no sap. Sid fully intended to make good use of his night with the beautiful brunette in the blue party dress. He just didn’t see a reason to be an asshole about it, treat women the way some of his teammates did. Especially the ones you pay for, he thought with a touch of self-righteousness. They probably get treated like crap all the time. A final fix of his hair and he felt ready.

If she’s smart, she’s looking at the breakfast menu right now.
____

Andy stared out the window. Sidney Crosby. Holy hell. This was not just a booking, not just a client. This was a national security issue, a fucking international relations disaster waiting to happen. Sidney Crosby hires call girl in DC, Canada declares war on US.

He seemed nice. She was so keyed up that anyone less than the Jigsaw killer would probably have been a relief. Sidney had decided he was hungry, but asked her if she wanted to go out to eat. And he meant it. When she agreed, he took his suit – already picked out – into the bathroom to change. That is cute, she thought despite herself.

“Ready?” he asked. He helped Andy into her coat and led her down the hall.

He’s shorter than Mike, she thought. Wider too, and deeper. Sidney had a more solid stature, weighty and thick with nothing but muscle. Where Mike seemed skinner from having lost weight over the off season, Sidney seemed compact and coiled. His shoulders were wide and his waist narrow, he walked with easy confidence. He was definitely not the mess Mike had been on their first night.

Mike, she kept thinking. Mike, Mike, Mike. Sidney stood close to her in the elevator.

The hotel got them a cab and sent them to whatever restaurant they’d chosen when Sidney called the concierge desk. Andy wondered if they’d had to drop his name to get a table somewhere at 8:30 PM on a Friday night during election season. They pulled up and Andy knew they had: Maestro was considered one of DC’s premiere restaurant experiences.

“I have never been here,” Andy said, breaking the silence.

“Me neither. The hotel says it’s good.”

“Everyone says it’s good.”

Andy kept her eyes glued to the maitre-d’s back as he let them to their table. She did not want to see if anyone in the dining room recognized Sidney Crosby.

Yeah, this is perfect, he thought. He was a little uncomfortable hiring a girl, though he’d done it a few times before. It was just too dangerous for him to pick someone up in a bar and trying to actually date someone in Pittsburgh or Nova Scotia was a fucking circus. Sidney had tremendous willpower and drive, he could go without for a long time. When he felt the urge, he could certainly afford to pay for capability and discretion. On those occasions, he liked to at least take the girl out for a nice dinner. And this one was certainly his type – fit and healthy-looking, thick dark hair and not too much makeup. Almost like a real girl, the mean voice in his head said.

“So I hear you’re a big hockey fan,” he tried. The hockey hooker. That had been his first thought when the answering service had suggested someone named Andrea who was an avid follower of the game. Either it was a convenient lie or this girl was working a real niche market. At the rate his teammates and the other guys hired girls, she probably made more money than half the third-line players.

“I’m a big Capitals fan,” Andy said. She couldn’t help but tease a little. Sidney Crosby! Oh shut up, slut. She was trying to put her mask on, the let her mouth speak without her brain thinking. “I may have said a few choice things about you in the past.”

Sidney made a face. “Ouch. You hardly know me.” And now what you know is even worse, he thought. Maybe this hockey thing was a bad idea.

“I will reserve my judgment for now, I promise.” Andy drained her first glass of wine in one gulp. Sidney pretended not to notice.

As they talked, she relaxed a little. Several glasses of wine helped, but not as much as simply looking at him. Sidney Crosby. So familiar. He was gorgeous, almost intimidatingly so, with full, pink lips and a quick smile. That laugh – almost girlish, definitely a giggle, always surprising – made a few appearances. She was so used to looking at him that she felt like she knew him a little bit. His eyes were more brown than anything she’d ever seen, sometimes gold, sometimes hazel, sometimes almost black in their depth.

Focus, she told herself during lulls in the conversation. As long as they spoke she could keep her mind in check.

I’m laughing too much, Sidney thought. He sensed her reticence and tried to overcompensate for it, laughing at his own remarks. She seemed happy to let him carry the conversation. I’m talking too much about myself.

“Andrea, tell me about you.”

It was easier when he called her that. Easier to stay where she needed to be, behind a wall. She told Sidney about living in DC, visiting her friends in the Carolinas over Labor Day weekend, what food she liked. Without intention, she didn’t tell Sidney anything that she had told Mike. Still they had some things in common and when Andy got more comfortable she found it was nice to make him laugh.

“… so I’m running through the terminal with my suitcase, knocking pilots and old ladies out of the way, and I get to the flight of stairs. Under and around the back is my gate. The screen is flashing ‘final boarding’ and the gate agent is on the PA saying ‘Last call – passenger Brattle please report to gate 29.’ So I throw my hand up and yell, ‘That’s me!’ The entire waiting area looks up, a hundred people, just as the guy on the mic says, ‘Here comes the bride!’ I ran right past him at full tilt and made my flight!” Andy put her arms down, having told the story with her whole body.

Sidney laughed so hard he didn’t make any noise. He covered his face with a napkin, beet read and tears in his eyes. A few gasps and he managed to ask, “Whose wedding was it really?”

“My friend in St. Louis. I totally stole her identity - used her fianc├ęs name, her church, everything. I didn’t start out to lie, but it just snowballed and then it was too late.”

“That is an amazing story. But don’t tell me anymore or I’ll never get to eat.” Sidney giggled a few more time, chewing his steak. This was getting easier. Her smile was spectacular when she really meant it.

They passed on dessert. Sidney didn’t eat it and Andy’s nerves were creeping back as the clock ticked on. Sex, it’s just sex, she repeated in her head. Every time he’d firmly gripped his knife she’d gotten a flash of panic. While they waited for the bill, Sidney checked his phone. He made a little face.

“What?” Andy asked.

“The Caps just won.”

Just like that, she fell apart. She bit her lip and forced herself to keep her eyes open, knowing once they closed she would come up crying. Beneath the table her fingers twisted into the end of the white linen tablecloth. “What was the score?”

Sidney wasn’t sure what he’d seen. A flicker of something, a hint of a feeling. She’d covered it quickly and well. She would, she’s a professional. But still, that’s really worked up about some early-season hockey game.

“4-2, looks like Ovechkin got two. Backstrom scored, and Green.”

Kill me, please kill me now, she thought.

“Andy, you okay?” he asked.

“Yeah. Thank you, dinner was great.”
____

Mike hit the speed dial button again. Andy’s phone rang once then went to voicemail. Turned off, he knew. It’s only 10 PM. Still, he picked up a glove from the locker room floor and squeezed it as hard as he could to keep from throwing it.
____

Sidney slid close to her in the backseat of the cab. She asked the cab driver to take them past the mall and the monuments, sharing little known facts about the city’s famous landmarks. He admired her as much as the scenery – her perfume was something floral and feminine, her hair almost auburn in the dim light. When she put her hand down, he twined his fingers into hers. Andy’s hand lay open beneath his for a few seconds before she curled her fingers around too.

I’m going to throw up. I’m going to throw up a $200 dinner onto Sidney Crosby in the back of a taxi. He probably has another road game and needs to wear that suit.

He squeezed her hand in a way he hoped was reassuring. She was slipping away a little, the warmth he’d seen while laughing at dinner being replaced by a professional distance that frankly made him feel a little judged. Her skin was soft beneath the pad of his thumb, circling over the back of her hand. Come on back, he urged.

At the hotel, Andy again avoided any mirrors. She didn’t want to see herself with him, see how they looked together. She imagined they were a beautiful couple – he was stunning enough for both of them. His width and her slender frame, they’d be quite the complimentary pair.

She draped her jacket over a chair in the room. Sidney found it was impossible not to admire her – long legs in delicate high heels the same bright blue as her mid-thigh strapless dress. Her skin looked silky smooth as she ran the front of one foot down the back of her other calf.
____

Mike didn’t leave a message. It was nearly midnight. She is… busy. He looked out the window of the plane into the darkness below.
____

Just get this over with, she thought. It’s the anticipation that’s killing me. Remember before? Once we got started it all came around. She glanced toward Sidney, putting his suit coat on a hanger. He’s fucking hot. He’s nice. Probably a lamb in bed. It’s just sex.

Sidney closed the closet door. Andy heard the sound like a starter’s pistol firing. She didn’t think, just turned and in two steps, her mouth was on his.

He practically had to catch her she was moving so fast. All at once, every nerve ending in his body fired as her warm, soft lips insisted that he return her kiss. He grabbed, thumbs hooking into her sides and fingers meeting behind the small of her back, his hands easily spanning the width of her body. He slid them down over her ass and pulled in tight.

A little breath puffed out of her as their bodies fit together. His pillowy lips tasted like wine, dark with a hint of berries and chocolate. His tongue eagerly slipped into her mouth, though it was a moment too long before she reciprocated. It raised a tiny flag in his mind but he kept on kissing, deciding to believe her body instead. His hefty thigh was between hers, riding provocatively higher against the hem of her dress.

Andy’s body responded without permission. His shoulders were so wide, his chest hard against hers. Strong arms moved her wherever he wanted. Sidney’s legs were like tree trunks and it was impossible not to want to feel his sturdy form holding her up. She shifted her weight against his quad, sliding her own thigh dangerously close to his zipper.

He kissed her again, hard, and bought his hands to her legs. They slid up bare skin, sneaking beneath her dress and inching it up – each inch then quickly taken by his lower body until his massive, muscular thigh was ready to lift her off the ground.

If that doesn’t do it…. He kissed her again, his tongue sweeping hungrily between her lips. Again, it was an awkward moment before she gave into the kiss.

Shit, Sidney thought. He spent probably a whole minute standing there, grinding a leg against her panties with his hands feeling the lace stretched across her hips. His mouth was joined to hers, attempting to convince her that she wanted this. She wanted him. He was Sidney fucking Crosby and she was the hockey hooker – what more could there possibly be? Shit.

He tried again, moving his hands from beneath her dress and reaching into her hair. Soft and thick, it smelled like clean laundry on a sunny day. Palms slid down to hold her face. The tension in her neck was palpable beneath the heels of his hands. He almost flinched at the frozen muscles. Her lower body was stuck to his, but the rest of her was wound tight as a spring. She continued to kiss him without tongue, her hands on the flat of his back and not moving.

Shit. He wanted this. He’d made a purchase and was expecting delivery. More than that, he wanted release and he wanted it from this beautiful, delicious woman in his arms, in his room, whose mind was clearly elsewhere tonight. Shit.

“Andrea,” he whispered, pulling back from her soft mouth.

Her eyes were screwed shut, lines etched into her brow. She blinked them open slowly as if afraid of what she’d see. Those melted chocolate bottomless pools, a hundred colors swirling together, they looked worried.

“Who is he?” Sidney said.

An ice cold flash of adrenaline blasted through Andy’s body, like she’d been caught sneaking away from the scene of a crime carrying a bloody knife. She flinched hard.

“What? Shhh...” and she leaned back in for a kiss.

It took an incredible amount of willpower for Sidney to hold her still, keep her from reaching his swollen, kiss-stung lips that were so thirsty for more of her. He might even be impressed with himself someday. For now he just felt resolution – This is who I am. I can make a willing exchange with someone, but I cannot take from another person. Not this girl. Under different circumstances, I could be the one she’s thinking about.

“Who is he?” Sidney repeated. “Who are you so worried about?”

Andy’s mask cracked. She pinched her lips together between her teeth and tried to step away, but Sidney held her fast. They were still intimately connected from the waist down and he wasn’t letting go until he was sure he had to.

“Someone,” was the best she could do. Her shoulders dropped, rounding into his body. Instead of pushing her away, Sidney wrapped his arms around her back and stood them both up straight. His big hand, moments ago toying with her panties, stroked over her long wavy hair. They stood there for a few minutes, Sidney just holding her while she hardly breathed.

“You almost had me fooled,” he said, whispering into her ear. One thumb stroked the base of her neck, where it met her shoulder blade in painful, twisted knots.

“Sidney…”

It felt really good when she said his name. Too good. He lifted his head and looked into her eyes. They were gray, remarkable really and he remembered thinking earlier they were beautiful. Now they were troubled.

“… I’m sorry. I can still… if you want we can…”

Sidney smiled for absolutely no reason other than the debate was over. “Could you? Without hurting yourself, could you really?”

“No,” came a small voice.

“Andrea, stop. You don’t have to worry about me. I’m not going to take advantage of you.  If you don't want to, we won't.”

She looked so relieved that he was disgusted with himself for ever having thought he could have her for a price. Dinner and compliments? What the fuck is that compared to making up your own mind about who you take to bed? Part of him hoped to forget that realization or it would be a long dry spell for Sidney Crosby.

White knight, hero, she thought. He certainly looked the part, staring at her intently like he was trying to read her mind. A shameful, deceitful part of her still wanted him, just physically, but it was shouted down by her heart.

“I like hanging out with you,” she admitted. “You’re funnier than I expected. I thought you’d be a little boring, really.” She laughed softly.

“Tonight was certainly not boring,” he said. “Is he your boyfriend?” Andy bit her lip. It made Sid want to kiss her again, the plump pink flesh giving way beneath the gentle pressure of… Stop. Stop it. Down boy. At least I got some new material to jerk off to.

“Kind of.” The image of Mike that came to her mind was not sexual, not even in the heavily charged atmosphere of the room. It was Mike standing at her door, flowers in hand, suit all pressed and eye black from a fight. Smiling like he was shy.

Sidney led her to the bed and sat her on the edge, reaching for the bottle of water on the nightstand. She sipped as he spoke. “No offense Andrea, but any guy who lets you do this is not good enough for you. If you were mine, it would be over my dead fucking body that you ever wanted for anything. Forget something like this.”

“This is new. He’s new too. Everything happened all at once and he’s on the…”

It clicked in Sidney’s head like a safecracker hears the last pin drop into place, revealing a fortune when the door swings open. “Holy shit. He’s a Capital.” Andy put her hand across his mouth. Those voluptuous, sensual lips disappeared beneath her palm. She shook her head silently, he just raised his eyebrows.

“Now I know all your secrets.” He smiled against her skin.

“Please, Sidney…”

“I’m only kidding. You know my secret too. In fact, I’ll tell you another secret, so we’re square.” He reached back into her hair. “This is the first real exchange I’ve had with a beautiful woman in a long time, especially alone in a hotel room. You just became very special to me, Andrea.”

“Please, I hate that name. Call me Andy.”

“Andy,” he said, trying it out. “I like that better.”

Sidney fetched his phone from the desk and made a call. Andy stared at her hands: she had almost done something awful – a self-fulfilling prophecy when you’re an awful person. Maybe she’d looked the way Mike had that first night: desperate for someone to reach into the sea and pull out the drowning man. The phone snapped shut.

“New plan. Grab your coat.”

He wouldn’t tell her anything, just retraced their route though the hotel and into a taxi, gave an address and they were off. This time, she held his hand. The cab stopped in front of a nightclub, one smile at the doorman and they were in past the line waiting at the velvet rope. Hand in hand they threaded through the bodies and into a second cavernous room full of dancers. On the left, Sidney nodded his way past another bouncer.

“Sid!” ten voices all yelled at the same time. Buried beneath drinks and girls and a few more girls for good measure were guys that Andy recognized as members of the Pittsburgh Penguins. She stood behind Crosby’s shoulder, still holding his hand, suddenly feeling very overwhelmed.

“Who’s your date?” Jordan Staal untangled his lanky body from a chair and stood.

“This is Andy. She’s got a boyfriend, so be nice to her.”

“Booooooo!” Max Talbot shouted from beneath at least two blondes and maybe a third pair of legs. “You’re just my type!” She could see that smile got him out of a lot of trouble.

The other guys introduced themselves, Sidney got a round of drinks and Andy talked with Marc-Andre Fleury. He seemed excited to speak to someone else that wasn’t looking to hook up. If only she could understand his accent over the music. Sidney helped and they stood in a close circle, shouting conversation to each other and laughing. He made her tell the airport story again, which had Flower choking on his drink halfway through. Jordan asked her to dance, then she danced with Sidney to a few songs in a row, just standing close and holding onto each other. After a while, he looked at his watch, then Andy. She nodded slightly and slipped out through the crowd, onto the smoking patio, freezing in a little dress.

Mike’s phone was off.
____

An hour later, at last call, sober Sidney rounded his troops into cabs. Max howled when Andy climbed in too, having to sit on Sidney’s lap so the door would close. “After the party it’s the hotel lobby…,” Talbot sang. When they reached the hotel, Jordan and Max both openly propositioned Andy in front of Sidney who just laughed the whole time. Politely declining, Andy sent the boys to bed.

“It’s hard for me to keep up with them,” Sidney admitted when they were gone. “Being…”

“Being you,” Andy finished for him. She slid her hand into his and pressed a kiss to his cheek. “I’m really sorry, Sidney. You don’t seem like the type who does this for fun. You needed something tonight and I couldn’t help you.”

“Sabotaged by the Capitals,” he rolled his eyes. “I had a great time tonight, Andy. I actually had fun with a girl! And I totally felt you up before, so that was nice too.” She slapped him on the arm. “No, really. I had my hands up your dress.”

“Sidney!”

He laughed that high-pitched giggle, making her follow suit. “What color are your underwear? Just tell me that.”

“They’re leopard print.”

“Oh man! If I”d known that…” he pulled her into a hug, arms a safe distance above her underwear, and squeezed her in tight. Then he held her face and looked right into her eyes. “Seriously, Andy. Sort this out tomorrow. If whoever this guy is doesn’t step up, call me and I will. I mean it – whatever you need, I will make sure you get it. Promise.”

She nodded into his hands. “I promise.”

“I will call that number next time and you better not be available.”

“Or what?” she sassed.

“I will let you work it off. Like layaway. You can move to Pittsburgh and wear leopard print every day.” He pressed a long, solid kiss to her lips. “Bye Andy.” He was halfway to the door before the thought crossed his mind. “Uh, Andy?” he called. “See you Sunday?”

She gave him a sheepish look. “We’re not, uh… public. The team doesn’t know me.”

“Change that too, or I will.” He pushed open the door feeling better about the night.
_____

Friday, October 29, 2010

Chapter 7

Mike dropped Andy at her door with a kiss and a promise to play well so he’d get a lot of TV time. Andy went right upstairs and opened her laptop. She researched, made phone call, sent emails. By the afternoon, she’d found and applied for 17 completely normal, sex-free jobs.
____

At ten o’clock that night, Andy’s phone rang. She’d been wondering when he’d call.

“Mike Green Fan Club, how may I help you?”

He laughed right through the pounding of his heart, the worry that she would pick up in a noisy bar or restaurant, out on the town, out with a client. Or worse, that she wouldn’t answer at all.

“Yes, my membership has expired. I’d like to renew.”

“That will be $52, and you’ll have to get the re-initiation Mohawk. There’s a special if…”

He cut her off. “I miss you.” What an absolutely ludicrous thing to say to a call girl you have paid for sex three nights in a row.

“I miss you too, Mike. How’s Buffalo?”

They talked about nothing for a while, cementing Mike’s confidence that Andy was in fact home doing nothing but waiting for him to come back. She wanted to know all about life on the road, so he told her cleaned-up versions of some stories. Brooks came in while he was talking and made a “who is it?” motion. Mike waved him off.

“It’s curfew and my roommate needs his beauty sleep.”

“Well don’t cuddle with him or I’ll get really jealous,” Andy said. “Kick ass tomorrow, I’ll be watching.”

“Yes boss.”
____

Andy watched the game alone at home, concentrating on every move and every play. Mike was on the ice almost all the time. The Capitals played well again, and got a softball this time as the Buffalo defense had a terrible night. Only Ryan Miller kept it from being a blowout and the Caps won 4-1.

“We’re leaving for New York now, won’t get in till really late,” Mike said on the phone.

And you wanted to check up on me, Andy knew. But she was glad – if she couldn’t come right out and tell him that she didn’t work while the team was away, maybe he could figure it out.

“Nice game tonight. I might make a trade for you in my fantasy league.”

He put on a cheesy 70’s voice. “I’ll make all your dreams come true, baby.”

Andy snorted. “Wrong fantasy.”
____

Two more days passed the same way – Mike called at night, Andy answered at home. Their last game was against the Rangers and they would fly home right after the game. Andy wondered if Mike would call her when he got home or want to come over. He’d be so tired, and they had another game in two days. She considered the logistics of giving him a freebie if only so she could sleep next to him.

“Hey,” he said, still drowsy from his post-game nap.

“If you get the chance, and it won’t cost you two minutes, please punch Sean Avery in the face.”

Mike laughed. “Anything for you. We’re going right to the airport from the arena, but it’s always slow in New York. Probably won’t be home till 1 AM.”

“Yeah, I figured. And a big game Sunday.”

“Ugh,” Mike was tired thinking about it. It was a nationally televised game, the NHL making a big deal out of a rivalry and pushing for new fans. “I fucking hate those guys.”

“Well they hate you too, so you’d better get a lot of sleep. Call me tomorrow after you wake up?”

Mike lay in his hotel room, lonely in an empty bed, having thought of Andy very vigorously before falling asleep. Brooks was skipping his nap, getting some physio. “I really want to see you.” Ask me to come over, he willed. Ask me and I’ll come, who cares how tired I am? Tell me you can’t wait to see me.

“Me too, but you’ll have to wait. I would like another Capitals victory. And maybe a first star,” she said. It wasn’t easy, she really wanted him to come straight home to her. But they could only break so many rules without risking the game they were trying so hard to improve. “Go home, Mike. See me tomorrow.”

“Okay, I’ll try to make my car drive itself home.”
____

Andy was set up to watch the game against the Rangers – pajamas on, popcorn made, lemonade on ice. She was getting a blanket from the closet when her phone rang. Thinking it was awfully close to game time for Mike to be calling, she shoved the armload of linens back onto the shelf and ran for her purse.

“Hello?” she said without looking at the caller ID.

“Hello Andy, this is Susanna.”

Damn, was Andy’s first thought, disappointed not to hear Mike’s voice. “Hi Susanna, how are you?”

“I’m well dear. We have a booking for you for tonight.”

“What? Uhh, I’m sorry. I mean, the Caps are on the road. They’re in New York right now, they’re on TV.”

A ticking sounded in the background, like Susanna was paging through a computer or PDA. “This would be a player from the visiting team. Seems they must be in town early for the game on Sunday. I am very impressed with you so far, Andy, your immediate success here is very promising. This is another new client, I expect you can work your magic again. I trust this won’t be a problem?”

Andy barely heard herself say yes. She couldn’t hear anything over the blood rushing in her ears. Some words must have formed because Susanna kept talking.

“Excellent. I’ll text you the hotel information. I don’t have a name for him – that’s what I get for letting Henry speak to the answering service. But I expect as a fan you’ll know him better than I would anyway.”

“Okay,” Andy whispered, the shock wearing off and fear setting in.

“One more thing, dear. The rate for this one is higher. Again, no info whatsoever from my husband but this was booked out at an extra $500. That’s $300 more for you. Make it worth your while.”

Andy stuttered a goodbye and dropped the phone like it had been dipped in acid. She looked toward the TV just in time to see Mike was skate past the camera. Fuck.
____

It seemed cold in the hotel. Andy valet parked her car and zipped her long coat up to her throat. Bare legs were a bad idea in a cold snap, but there wasn’t really an option. It had been the most she could do to fix her hair and put on matching shoes. She’d had to redo her eyeliner three times, never able to stop her hand shaking long enough to make a straight line. The TV had gone off immediately and stayed that way – if she saw Mike’s face or heard his name, there was no telling what she would do. Crossing the lobby, she thought the chills might be her body going into shock.

The traitorous phone was clutched in her hand. She’d read the room number twenty times but couldn’t remember anything. At the elevator, she refused to look at herself in the mirror, afraid of what she’d see looking back. Mike, she thought over and over.

She knew this would kill him. They had never said as much but she was past thinking this was just a business arrangement. That had been a comforting delusion in getting her into his room, into his bed. Since then, everything had changed – except this. This deal with the devil. Andy had made her bed, literally, and now there was someone else in it.
____

Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck. Fuck fuck fuck. I knew this would happen. Was I really fooling myself? Hooker rescued by the first guy who calls her? Am I that stupid? Andy berated herself as she tossed underwear from her drawer, littering the floor like a Victoria’s Secret fire sale. How could I let this get away from me? But she didn’t know what “this” was. She’d let control get away, she’d let her imagination get away. And now, she was going to let Mike get away. Fuck.

She should have said no to Susanna. She should have invented an excuse – a cold, a broken leg, the immediate need to have a plate put in her head. She shouldn’t have answered the phone. Andy had changed the scenario a hundred times before her dress was zipped, undoing what she had just done.

I can’t do this. I have to do this. I am that girl, I’m a whore, a monster. I’m the most worthless thing that someone ever paid for.

In a moment of lucidity, Andy had called Vivian. “Is there any way out of a booking?”

Vivian sounded concerned, but Andy wasn’t sure how much was friendly and how much was worry about her job. “Not really, babe. Unless the guy has some history – violent, scary, deadbeat. Otherwise, once the agency takes the booking, they have to send a girl. Especially in your case – word gets around those locker rooms that Susanna can’t deliver, she won’t get calls. And you definitely will not get called again.”

Andy had figured as much.

“Andy, listen to me. You can do this. You did it a week ago when you didn’t know this other guy. And look how good you were! Everyone panics the first few times, it is perfectly normal. Just get there, put on your little show and I promise that you’ll feel better after a drink. You knew this would happen. Just take a deep breath and remember why you’re doing this. Remember it was okay last time, better than okay! You are going to be fine. Okay? Babe, you gonna be okay?”

“Yeah,” Andy lied.
____

She walked slowly down the hallway, the carpet pattern repeating endlessly like she was pacing a tunnel, darkened and narrow, going on forever. The room numbers climbed as she passed, finally reaching a suite at the far corner of the 25th floor.

Mike I am so sorry, she whispered to no one. Blinking cleared the start of tears from her eyes.

She hadn’t thought about who it might be. It didn’t really matter. She knew who all the guys were, their rivalry huge not only in terms of fan feeling but marketing efforts as well. The NHL went in for this matchup as often and as big as possible. In a few months, these teams would face off in one of the premiere events of the entire season. Andy knew that it didn’t matter who opened the door.

She reached up to knock, but the hand came back unbidden and ran fretfully through her hair. On the second time, she got it. Eyes closed.

Knock, knock, knock.

The noise of the lock being thrown thumped heavily through her stomach: the sound of her prison door closing.

“Hi,” he said, standing in the doorway. The same position, the same situation she’d been in just a few days before. It felt like the whole world had changed, but that wasn’t his fault. She felt a tiny, infinitesimal bit better when she saw him; a real person. Not the idea of a monster. She was her own worst enemy, not this man in the gray t-shirt and jeans, barefoot on the hotel carpet.

“Hi Sidney.”
____

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Chapter 6

Andy stood close to the wall and looked up and the niches holding bottles of wine. It was a small space but luxuriously done, akin to a display in the front of a fancy wine bar. Like the place they’d been earlier. She rolled a few of the bottles, reading labels though she didn’t know what most of them meant.

Mike was in the kitchen, two empty glasses on the table and a corkscrew in hand. He watched her as he cut the foil and turned the bottle. A drop of red splashed onto the granite countertop – he couldn’t look at her and pour the wine.

She put one shoulder against a cabinet and sipped. Mike leaned his back against the edge across from her. They just looked at each other for a long moment.

He did want to ruin this, didn’t want to shatter the illusion Andy created for him. But he couldn’t shake the look that had crossed her face when Alex leered at her in the restaurant, like she was his for the taking whenever and however he pleased, as long as he made the call. She had looked sick, but more than that angry and humiliated all at the same time. Andy covered it quickly and well – she was a pro. It was killing him, wondering if she’d made that face about him too.

“Andy, am I making you do something you don’t want to do?”

The question hung in the air like a guillotine, rope fraying as the blade gleamed deadly sharp. I have to know, no matter what, he told himself.

“No, Mike.”

He thought she would tell the obvious lie: you’re not making me do anything. But he was, and he knew it. When he held her, or she smiled, it was easy to forget that she had no choice in the matter. He didn’t want to forget that. He moved to her with authority. He couldn’t change their situation, not right now, but he could do something for her after all she’d done for him. “If you don’t want to stay, I’ll take you home. I won’t tell anyone.” His unspoken words were loud shouting: I’ll still pay you.

The look on her face was unreadable. “So I’m free to do whatever I want?”

A shiver of panic ripped down his spine. Damn this trying to be mature, learning to treat people well! But he managed a small nod.

“I’ll just be in your room then.” She took the wine glass with her.

She heard footsteps hurrying. He reached her at the open door, pressing her against it and kissing her deeply. I can’t believe he asked. Andy was stunned – she was scared to talk about it and obviously Mike was terrified, but he still asked. From someone else she would have begged for an out like that. From Mike she never wanted to leave, especially now that she knew what was out there waiting.

Andy began unbuttoning, repeating the ritual she’d performed the night before. The satin of her dress was quick beneath his hands, the zipper offering no resistance. It shushed to the ground in a little parachute of red fabric. He stepped to arm’s length and admired her red strapless bra and matching g-string underwear. She gave him a wink and did a little turn.

“Hmmmm,” he said, searching for a remark to make but coming up empty. “Gorgeous.”

“Capitals red,” Andy reached for him.

Well fuck, that does it, he thought. They tumbled onto the low platform bed before Mike’s clothes were off. Andy giggled as he barrel-rolled them into the center. Their mouths collided as his hands lifted her easily, moving her into position under him. He took his lips to her breast, Andy ran both hands strongly through his hair.

“Are you allowed to have sex before game nights?” Andy asked, figuring he must because who would pay just to have dinner with her? And there was no stopping now.

Mike released her skin from between his lips. “No, actually. It’s frowned upon by the coaches.” It wasn’t the sex Mike was paying for. Well, not just the sex. She shimmied, rubbing her thigh along his naked erection in a torturous little twist. The smile on her face was wicked.

“Don’t let me get you in trouble,” she taunted, twisting again. “Don’t spend all your energy on me.”

Mike shut her up with a kiss and took her breath away in two places as at once. Feeling her go tense in his arms, her sweet, soft core giving way beneath his pressure he got such a surge of blood to his cock he thought he might faint. So good, she is so good… Mike refused to let the thought finish. Andy held onto his shoulders and closed her eyes. It was warm in the room, warm beneath his body and hormones flooded blissfully through her body.

Fuck the money, fuck Ovechkin, fuck it all. Andy was right where she wanted to be.

“Mike,” she breathed. He got harder that the sound of her voice, the desire he heard and the weakness he felt for her. It was easy to lose himself with Andy – there was so much that he wanted. He forgot everything else and the world didn’t seem so heavy anymore.

They took their time with each other, exploring and learning what they’d caught of a glimpse of before. Andy told herself she was going easy because she didn’t want to tire him out. Really she was enjoying every second if it more than the last.

A song ran through Andy’s mind: Crash and burn girl. You don’t mind the fall until your face hits the ground.

She lay on top, perfectly aligned and moving her whole body up and down along his. On the way up, her breasts rubbed firmly into his chest. On the way down, her clit pressed against his pelvic bone and rang her body like a doorbell. Their kisses were deep and long, the slightest stubble on his chin rasping against her chin. As he stroked her hair and back, he thought what he’d have missed if he never made that phone call. She went under when he turned. His upper body was a sight to behold as he hovered, pushing on her shins to bend her knees. Catching them with his shoulders, he stroked into her. Mike watched as his cock disappeared inside her body, the friction and heat making his mind swim. He’d have given anything to keep watching her soaking core take him all the way in, but he needed to be near her. This has to be real, he repeated. He had never, ever felt like this.

She kissed him again, having missed his mouth as her body started to shoot tiny fireworks. I shouldn’t, I can’t… Andy’s body gave up before her mind could.

“Yesssss,” she moaned loudly, digging her nails into his ass and holding him deep as her body pulsed against his dick. “Oh my god,” her breath caught as her orgasm crashed.

Mike let go, all at once, of the control he’d been holding since she joked about the color of her underwear. He pounded into her three times and buried his face in her hair. A groan tore from his throat as he came, growling against the soft, fragrant skin of her neck.

“Andy, you are saving my life,” he panted

He said it without thinking. Instantly he wanted to take it back: Too much! He waited, breathless, for her reaction. When her cheek moved he knew she was smiling.

“I think you’re saving mine.”

Saving me from really becoming what I’ve agreed to be. From my situation. Saving me from myself.

“Will you come to the game tomorrow night?” He had been thinking about asking since the morning. The guys used anything they could think of to break a slump, searched desperately for a good luck charm. And the superstitions – maybe he needed a new one. He would play well with her there, he was sure. He felt better knowing she was near.

“Of course.” Her eyes lit up.

I love you, he wanted to say. What he meant was that he didn’t, not yet, but he was very sure that he would. Soon. And if his game turned around he would credit it all to her, like a man clinging to a raft in a storm. Distantly he knew it was not fair to put that on her but he was grasping at straws. She made things different.

Yes, let me help, Andy thought. She knew that last night, in the hotel, he’d just needed someone to be there for him. The connection between them was like a downed power line, shooting sparks and threatening to set fire to everything it touched. But even without that, he needed someone to lean on. Someone to give him a fresh start. Andy wanted to be that person.

“I will be really nervous though!” she admitted touching his bruised face for emphasis. He closed his eye under the gentle brush of her fingertip. “Promise me you’ll be careful.”

He kissed her hand. “I promise.”
____

The morning came quickly. Mike woke first and watched her sleeping, legs curled and hand tucked beneath her cheek. He poured himself an OJ and waited for Andy to wake up.

She rolled over in the empty bed, feeling around for Mike but coming up empty. A wicked smirk crossed her face.

“Morning,” Andy said from the kitchen doorway. She was wrapped in the dark blue sheet from his bed, something she’d always wanted to do. The juice glass nearly slipped from his hand, knocking clumsily to the counter before he fumbled it upright. Guess that worked, she smiled. The sheet trailed behind her, covering some thigh but leaving long legs visible. Her bare feet tapped quietly on the floor tiles as she crossed the room and took the last sip from his cup. “Making me breakfast?”

Mike nodded stupidly, unable to find his words. Holy hell was the only phrase that came to mind. Long, dark hair was tangled and tossed – perfect porn-star bed-head. Her eye makeup was mostly intact and her lips were moist with the hint of orange juice. Beneath his sweatpants, his body stirred awake.

He captured her mouth, tasting oranges. Annie smiled and let the sheet fall to the floor. She pressed her naked body to Mike’s sweats and was rewarded with a deep groan.

“Fuuuuuck Andy! I can’t… last night… oh God.”

She laughed and stepped away, only wanting to tease without torturing. “I intend to see your best effort on the ice tonight, Mr. Green. I will not be wearing you out before then.” With that, Andy turned and bent over slowly, gracefully right in the middle of the kitchen. She caught the sheet in her fingers and dragged it out of the room behind her swaying hips.

“You’re killing me!” Mike yelled after her.
____

“What does a hooker wear to a hockey game?” Andy asked the phone.

“A price list, baby,” Vivian laughed. “No, seriously. Susanna always says ‘cute and classy’ for casual events – you don’t want to look like those puckbunnies she was making fun of. You can wear something tight, but long sleeves, so skirts, that kind of thing. Just look like you fit in.”

“I usually wear a double-XL jersey and sneakers,” Andy flicked through hangers.

“Well, not that fitted in. I’m wearing a sweater and flats. Don’t think I’m their type anyway. But as long as you tell me which color to cheer for, I will learn quickly.”

“You’re my type, Viv.”
____

Vivian picked her up at 5:30 PM. True to her word she wore a gray knit sweater with a v-neck that hinted at a lot of available cleavage. The knit was so soft that Andy wanted to touch it – she assumed that was the idea. Jeans and metallic ballet slippers finished off the outfit. Andy wore dark jeans with high black riding boots, chosen because she thought heeled boots were too much for the arena. She didn’t want to fall to her death in the first intermission. On top she wore a long-sleeved, thin white sweater with her #52 t-shirt over it. The girls-cut shirts never fit perfectly, but she figured it was the thought that count.

Andy gave her name at will call and they took seats in the lower bowl, about ten rows back from the benches and ordered drinks from the section attendant. The arena was only half full and there were a lot of #52s walking around. At least half of them were girls and it seemed a disproportionate number of them were pretty. Very pretty.

She texted him, not knowing if he checked his phone before games. Awesome seats – thanks! I’m the 4,812th girl wearing #52.

He texted back minutes later: Come down by the glass, I want to see.

Andy: If I can get through the wall of screaming fans.

Mike: I thought you took kickboxing?

Andy: Quick hi, no distractions. Near blue line on bench side.

The crowd went crazy as the Caps took the ice. Vivian pressed in close, anxious to see Mike in person. Andy smiled at her enthusiasm – it was like they were watching a real friend. The team circled quickly, rushing past the glass, before setting up at center ice for a shooting drill. Mike saw her first, he skated over and backed into the glass right in front of them with a boom. His helmet was off but they couldn’t see his face.

“Woo!” Vivian shouted. Andy blushed and laughed. Mike took a turn in the drill, then came back smiling. He was fifteen feet inside the glass, facing a thousand fans, but there was no question he was looking at her. She gave him a little half-turn, so he could see the number on her back, looking over her shoulder.

It has never looked so good, he thought.

Brooks Laich slapped Mike on the calf with his stick. “Fuck Greenie, how come my fans never look like that?!” Then he waved at Andy, making her cover her face. She watched over her fingers as they went about their drill, shooting and skating. They took places for a quick-shot setup and Andy signaled she was going back to her seat and give Mike a cheesy thumbs-up. He tried not to laugh, just nodded.

Andy watched him take a shot, then stepped back to leave. Turning toward the bench, she locked eyes with the guy standing just inside the glass, looking at her from just a few feet away. He smiled too, gapped teeth and all: Alex Ovechkin.

She gave him a little wave. Susanna had said that a “very regular client” had referred Mike, so Alex must be a big spender when it came to the organization. Andy didn’t want to sleep with him, but she certainly didn’t want to ruin anything and get herself in trouble. A few rows up she let herself have a little shiver.
____

The game was tight and the Capitals played well. Really well. But so did the Stars. Mike was all over the ice, speeding up plays and launching slap shots. His teammates seemed on it too – a huge improvement over their last few games. In the second, Dallas got a goal and the Caps answered immediately with a wrist shot on the power play from Laich. Mike got a +1, and Andy and Vivian whooped and hollered along with everyone else. Late in the period, the Stars got one more and took a lead to the intermission. Andy was completely tense – the Capitals play had played well, but she wanted them to win. Needed them to win. She prayed they weren’t in the room losing momentum because they were down a goal. Her fears were relieved during the third, the game even faster than the first two periods. Attempting to stop a 2-1 rush, Mike took a tripping penalty and the Stars scored. Andy’s heart sank. If they have to loose, please please don’t let it be his fault. She sat on her hands to keep from biting her nails.

Pull it together, Mike told himself. It was just a penalty, just a goal. He was feeling good tonight and if he let the mistake go maybe he could help get it back.

He didn’t have to. Ovechkin lifted one over Lehtonin’s shoulder through a screen in front, tying the game. The crowd went crazy and Mike breathed a sigh of relief. As he hugged the big Russian he almost forgot about the way he’d looked at Andy.

With six minutes left in the period, tied 2-2, the Caps got a power play off a delay-of-game call. The Stars’ zone looked like a shooting gallery as Washington pitched shot after shot, catching their own rebounds and denying attempts to clear. The Verizon Center was at Defcon One, the fans feeling that one puck had to drop. Andy and Vivian were on the feet, along with everyone, jumping around like they could tilt the whole arena toward the Stars’ goal.

Backstrom cued one from the hash marks, tossing it into a pile of bodies at the net. Ovechkin swiped at it, right into the goalies blocker and it bounced back out on a long rebound. Mike was right in the lane – he wound up and fired a laser into the back of the net.

Andy was on her feet before the puck touched the twine, with 18,000 people right behind her. Mike was buried briefly under a pile of teammates, then skated the length of the bench giving everyone a fist bump. The girls screamed the entire time, and again when the announced called Mike’s name for the scoring sheet. Andy’s heart rate was dangerously high and she sank into her seat, laughing.

“I’m coming with you every time. This shit is tense!” Vivian yelled.

The Caps won 3-2 on Mike’s goal. In truth it was no different than 15 other goals he scored every year – maybe not game winners, but usually slap shots on the power play. But this one felt like he’d won something more than a game, like maybe he’d won back some of his confidence.
____

Alex stood near Mike’s stall in the locker room, as if waiting for him to come out of the shower. “You bring your friend to the game.”

Mike’s stomach dropped a little – he didn’t think Alex had seen Andy. “She’s a big fan.”

“Always she wears your number?”

Is that a question or a challenge? Mike thought.

“Yeah, she’s had that shirt for years.”
____

“I thought I was having a heart attack,” Vivian said, taking a sip from a cocktail glass. They were in a bar nearby. Mike was meeting them, after which Vivian would drive herself home. “After I meet him, obviously.”

Mike: Almost there. Andy watched the door.

When he did arrive, freshly showered and dressed in a gray suit with a blue shirt, she could have melted off her barstool into a puddle on the floor. He looked lighter. He was smiling, a full smile that he never showed on TV. The bruise around his eye was black as ever but for the first time since they’d met, he looked happy.

“Game over!” Andy threw her arms around his neck and squeezed all of her excess energy into him. He kissed her cheek, then her lips, then her lips again. He was warm and damp, he’d obviously hurried.

“I knew you were good luck.” He released her. “And you must be Vivian. I think I heard you screaming.”

She blushed. “Gotta put on a good show if I’m the only black girl in the whole place!”

They had a drink, peppering Mike with questions and reliving some of the moments. Andy laughed at the way they carried on like the Caps had just won a playoff series. Vivian reluctantly excused herself after half an hour, leaving Mike and Andy alone at their table.

“What happened to your shirt?” he rubbed the white cotton of her sweater between his fingers. He’d never seen her in anything but a dress and heels and wondered how someone could look so good in jeans. They hugged her legs like his hands wanted to do, wrapping her up rather tightly. He ran a hand up her thigh, the denim soft beneath his palm. “Not that I mind, of course.”

“I thought it would be a little much if I wore your number while waiting for you in a bar. Someone might report a stalker,” she bussed his cheek. “I’ll wear it later if you want.”

Later came sooner, as they finished another round and headed to Mike’s car. It was a black SUV, big and luxurious but definitely less flashy.

“No Lamborghini tonight?”

“No high heels, no Lambo,” he teased.

Andy hauled herself into the Escalade, only briefly computing how much it cost to own both of these cars. Then Mike was next to her and she didn’t care anymore. As he pulled out onto the road, Andy had the impression of riding in a tank.

“I feel like you’re Secret Service. Maybe I should ride in the back, like I’m the goods.”

“If you go back there, I’m coming after you,” he smiled without looking at her.
____

Andy sat on Mike’s couch, contemplating why there were two televisions. One was stuck to the front of the fireplace, the other was where a TV should be. He brought her a glass of water, sat down and lifted her legs into his lap. He pulled off her boots and rubbed both thumbs into one arch, making sigh with pleasure. He thought of how she’d massaged him, touched him and known just what he needed only two days ago.

“I feel so much better tonight,” he said. “Thank you, Andy.”

“You did tonight all by yourself. You guys looked great out there. I was freaking out, of course. Do you have to play 33 minutes a game? I might have irreversible damage to my nervous system.” She held her hand out, shaking exaggeratedly. “And you’re going to do it again on the road.”

Mike worked on the ball of her foot. “We leave in the morning, back in five days.”

Andy slid down till she was lying in the couch, sprawled out while Mike rubbed her feet. She knew that he wanted to ask the big question: will you see anyone while I’m gone? She hadn’t told him that she was only meant for NHL players. Now that she knew one, it sounded horrible for him to be aware that she would only be sleeping with his friends, enemies, teammates, people he saw all the time. He shouldn’t know that. Part of it was denial – she hadn’t done anything yet, and if she never said it out loud then it wouldn’t come true.

“Guess I’m on vacation, then,” she tried, giving him a smile meant to calm his fears.

Don’t ask questions you don’t want to know the answers to, he told himself. The Caps’ schedule had been set for months. Whoever handled the bookings might have filled Andy’s next five nights long ago. Honestly he was surprised someone like her had been free three nights in a row, someone who would clearly be in demand by any man in his right mind. Maybe her regular clients were on vacation. Regular clients. It made him want to throw up. But now he was a regular client too.

“Vacation?” he ventured. Not really a question.

She nodded. “Plenty of time to watch all your games.”

They lay around the living room for a while, both thinking about what they couldn’t say. It was hard for Andy to keep Mike in the dark, but she didn’t know enough about the system yet to foresee what might happen next. And she didn’t want to promise him something that would not come true. Mike thought about ways to get Andy out of her business, not really knowing how it worked, and figured that it was not easy. But he had a lot of money and those few years of flash had taught him that money could get away with almost anything.

His hand cheated up her leg and the rest of him followed until he was laying on top of her, taking up the entire couch. She pretended to struggle beneath him but she was trapped. The game ended when she slowly, lightly ran her tongue over the patch of skin just behind his earlobe. Then her tongue was in his mouth, her hands untucking the back of his dress shirt and reaching underneath. When she brushed bare skin, he broke away. He squatted next to the couch like he was going to scoop her up, but she skittered out of reach.

“Too heavy, can’t have you getting hurt!” She stood on the couch, spun him around and climbed onto his back. He pretended to bump into everything between the living room and the bed.

He dumped her on the mattress. She pulled her shirt off, breasts bouncing as she tossed it away and opened her jeans. He stood watching as she rolled them off her hips and kicked them down her legs. With impressive flexibility, she hooked fingers into each sock and removed those too. Andy lay there in matching pink lingerie with black trim and motioned for Mike to undress himself.

He went slowly through the buttons and draped his shirt over the back of a chair. His t-shirt came next, making sure to flex his abs and biceps as he drew it slowly over his head. The way her eyes lingered on his body made him hard. That is real desire, he told himself for the millionth time. Her eyes were heavy, admiring and there was no mistaking the lust in her gaze. As he reached for his belt, she slid a hand across her stomach.

Oh God, he thought. Her fingers passed her belly button, waistband and came to a stop right over her crotch, where they pressed into the lace of her panties. She flinched slightly at the first contact, showing him how keyed up she already was. Two fingers reached between her open legs, running over the fabric that barely covered her, before she rolled the tips down into her clit again, her whole body moving with it.

Mike could barely get his belt off he was so hard. He desperately unzipped without killing himself and had to stretch his shorts way out to get them over his hard-on. The whole pile got kicked away as he made for the bed. Andy kept watching him and touching herself.

“Such a rush,” she whispered as he put his hand over hers, between her legs. “I wanted to show you what I’m going to do on my vacation.”

When I’m completely desperate for you and you’re a thousand miles away, she didn’t say. Earth-shattering sex three nights in a row would be a tough act to follow, but Andy knew she'd miss more than that.

Mike propped himself up on one arm and sat close, watching her slender fingers trace over the thin material. She knew what she liked, and he tried to memorize every move. Before long, the center of the fabric right over her entrance was dark with dampness. He reached for her, but she pushed his hands away. Instead Andy lifted her ass and slid her panties off herself, making every hip movement count, until they were halfway down her thighs. Then she returned her fingers to the scene and swiped around her own juices.

In the back of his mind, Mike’s inner frat boy made a guest appearance. Fucking hottest thing ever! he shouted. New Mike was inclined to agree. Andy closed her eyes as she slid a single finger into the slick folds of her pussy. Mike was stroking himself absently, hard as a rock but unable to concentrate on anything but the show Andy was putting on. Her finger came out glistening with her juices. With a dirty smile, she reached up and ran it across Mike’s lower lip. His tongue came out in search. She tasted of heaven, of delirium and the weak spot he still felt between his heart and stomach.

He couldn’t stop himself, couldn’t even try. Mike rolled quickly down to her waist and pulled one of her legs over his head. His lips brushed her creamy inner thigh only barely before his mouth found her peach.

She giggled at the first swipe of his tongue. “Game over.”

He mumbled something into her, the vibration and warmth of his breath making her gasp.  Holy shit, Andy thought. She’d wanted to give him a little something extra before he left, so he’d know she was thinking about him while he was gone. And she’d been horny as a cat on a hot tin roof, ever since he took the ice at the arena. Hockey players had always turned her on, but she’d never come close to orgasm because one of them scored a goal. If not for Vivian, she would have mauled him at the bar. And in the car… his joke about the backseat had not gone unconsidered.

He moved his attention to her clit, making her twitch against the duvet. Then he slid a finger inside her, soaking his hand in the process. Another joined it. Andy grabbed at his hair, encouraging him to stay put. Mike was a quick learner. It only took a few minutes before his quick, strong licks and the insistent hardness of his fingers had her trembling inside and out. Somewhere deep inside her, that burn was getting out of control.

I have to have her, he thought. He had to make her come this way, he wanted to make her come every possible way so she’d never think about another man. Never look at one or let one touch her. He wanted to be the one so badly he was willing to work all night for it.

“Mike,” she moaned as it built. He went hard and soft, fast and slow, teasing her along. She bucked her hips, grinding onto his circling fingers. He tried every trick in the book – humming, warm and cold air, spelling out his name. Her pussy pulsed around his fingers, body pumping and he knew he was close.

“Oh god,” Andy whispered. It was right there, so close, it was coming on its own now. He waited as long as he dared, then crooked his fingers slightly forward and rubbed along her inside till he found that slightly raised spot, the hot button. And he pushed.

Andy’s back arch involuntarily, as if she were hit by lightning. Her eyes squeezed shut. A crash of heat slammed into her body, rippling outward through every finger and toe. Then it came again. Three, four times, she lost count. Stars burst inside her and rained little sparkles into every corner. When it finally broke, she went limp.

No one has ever done that before. No one. But she couldn’t tell him that because it sounded like exactly what a hooker would say. Instead, she whimpered weekly, turning her head to the side.

“Okay?” he asked with a smile, brushing hair from her neck.

“Don’t leeeeaaaaavvvvveeee,” she whined pitifully. He laughed and climbed on top of her.

“I won’t leave till I’m done with you.” He waited for Andy to open her eyes and smile, then he slipped the tip of his cock into the space sweet space he’d just devastated. “It probably won’t be very long.”

She laughed out loud at his honestly, a big, surprising laugh. Then she pulled him into a kiss. I love you, she thought, vaguely aware that she’d also lost her mind.

Mike couldn’t remember the last time he’d had sex with someone while laughing. Not drunk laughter or embarrassed, but that rare kind of sex where you enjoy someone’s company as much as you enjoy their body. Well, almost as much. He made it past a few minutes, but not much longer before the hot core of Andy’s body had him feeling pins and needles. She cried out softly as he drove into her, probing her sweet darkness with the only part of himself that seemed to know where it belonged anymore. When he came, he pressed his mouth to hers to keep from telling her the truth that had almost slipped out a few times now. I love you.
____

Monday, October 25, 2010

Chapter 5

“Well done, Andy. Not every girl gets a call back from her first client, and very few for the second night in a row. You seem to be handling this well,” Susanna said.

“He’s… really nice,” she was glad no one could see her blushing.

The smile was audible in Susanna’s voice. “I’m sure he is. Now, not to alarm you, but please be mindful that some clients get a little… possessive about their girls. We make exclusive arrangements only in very rare cases. This could be one, we’ll see how it plays out. But if you feel he is getting at all inappropriate….”

“I will tell you,” Andy cut her off, thinking she would never have to.
____

Mike’s mind drifted as he was suiting up – he held an elbow pad in one hand and just looked at it, not moving. He wanted to pick the perfect place for dinner, somewhere he would feel at ease with Andy and could show her that he wasn’t a broken down sad sack. A little help, he needed that. He’d gotten that. But he couldn’t have her thinking he was nothing else.

“You called,” Alex Ovechkin stated like it was a fact.

Mike knew he’d have to talk about it – Alex had given him the number, with a wink and a nudge. Lots of the guys hired girls at least occasionally, they were locker room banter and war stories. He didn’t think he was better than them. He just didn’t want to talk about Andy that way.

In the past, Mike had been a player. He’d been with more than his fair share of girls and treated plenty of them like shit. It never bothered him much – flashy with his money and easy with his company, like a young superstar millionaire athlete at the top of his game should be. Right? The only real female friends he had were at home, where he was better behaved during the off-season.

Then the season ended. Not just ended – it imploded, decomposed, combusted. One year had been a fluke, he’d recovered quickly. A second disgraceful playoff exit in a row had really hit home. Suddenly the top of his game seemed a million miles away. Then over the long, depressing summer, he’d seen one of his closest female friends put through the wringer and kicked to the curb by some guy who didn’t deserve her. Already in a terrible mood, it had registered. That’s me, he’d thought. With that realization and a whole summer to think about how he was handling his life, Mike had resolved that he would do some growing up.

Now, back in action, the guys were looking for the dirty details like they always used to get.

“Yeah man, thanks. Really helped,” Mike said.

“Was she hot?”

Mike slipped the shoulder pad on. “She was incredible,” he said honestly.

“Come on man, was she dirty? Fuck your brains out so you can get your head out of your ass?” Alex tapped his stick against Mike’s shin guards. “What her name? Maybe I already know her.”

Bile rose in the back of Mike’s throat. Totally irrational, he scolded himself, to think that this was his call girl, that she had never been with anyone else. But he really didn’t want to know. “Andy,” he said, hoping she would not at least have given her real name to someone like Alex.

Alex shook his head. “I know Amanda. And Anna. No Andy. Guess I’ll have to request special next time.” He left with a wink.

Fuck.
____

Vivian brought two cups to the coffee shop table. “Drinks on me for making me look good, girl! Two nights, first try – maybe they’ll give me a bonus for referring you.” Andy gave a cheers with her hot chocolate and licked at the whipped cream. She knew what was coming.

“So… how was it?”

“It was… crazy. It was amazing. And now I’m scared shitless that I’m going to fall in love with him and become a psycho call girl,” Andy admitted.

“Stop worrying. You will get settled with this job. At first, you can’t stop the feelings – not with the good clients. It’s what you’ve associated with great dates and sex your whole life. Takes time to undo that wiring. Once you get a grip on that, it becomes a little more… clinical. I think that’s why clients often try new girls, they’re looking for someone who still has that rush.”

Andy sipped her drink. She didn’t want to lose this and she didn’t want to lose him. Her stomach clenched at the thought of being with someone else, or him seeking solace with another girl. She doubled her resolve to help him as best she could.
____

At 6:59 PM, Andy’s doorbell rang. She ran a hand through her loose hair and straightened her strapless, knee-length red dress. Her heels clicked across the hallway floor.

“Hi,” Mike said, holding up a small bouquet of white roses. He smiled and resisted the urge to pull on his tie. He’d seen video of himself giving interviews and knew he moved his hands, tongue, mouth too much. Nerves. He kept on smiling.

She got the distinct impression he’d taken a long time getting ready – his hair was perfectly disheveled, his white shirt open at the throat with no tie under a dark suit. Before taking the flowers from his hand, Andy put her hands on the lapels of his suit jacket, leaned in and kissed his lips softly. He shrank an inch as his spine relaxed.

“Hi Mike.”

I probably shouldn’t have him into my house, Andy thought as she held the door open. This is not a date, this is not regular life. Too late.

He followed her into the kitchen. The apartment was small, the furniture mismatched but cozy. Her kitchen table was too big and she squeezed between it and the cabinets searching for a vase.

“Big table,” he said stupidly as she reached high overhead to bring down a glass carafe. The stretch defined every muscle in her back and lifted her perfect ass level with the counter. He wanted to lay her on it.

“I used to live in a bigger place,” she said, putting the roses in water. Please don’t ask. She didn’t want to lie, but would not tell the sob story that brought her to this point. Most people would look around at her perfectly adequate apartment and decent things and assume she was a call girl by choice, not necessity. Anyone who could afford brand name breakfast cereal must just be a whore. A young, rich athlete was the last person who would understand.

He tried to look quickly at everything in her apartment, to explore her life. On the wall in the living room, he moved close to a photo of her striking a pose in front of the Eiffel Tower. That trip to Europe was true, he thought with satisfaction. Not everything is a lie. He helped her into a coat and turned her around.

“You look stunning,” he said, body already responding to his words. Her long dark hair hung free, the dress was just shy of being too much and it hugged her body like a sports car on a windy road.

“Very handsome yourself, Mr. Green,” she smiled. “That black eye is the kicker – such a bad boy.” His hands drifted at her sides and his lips brushed her cheek. Outside, she stopped on the curb and laughed. She’d seen it in pictures and on TV, but there was Mike’s white Lamborghini Gallardo in all its low, sleek glory. He stood by the passenger side, holding the door.

“Wow,” she said. What she thought was the car was worth at least four times what she owed in loans. For about the trunk of that car, she wouldn’t be here at all. Her stomach sank, then again when she saw him smiling.

“Your chariot,” he swept his hand in a bow.

Oh Andy, her brain said.

She was dressed the part. Feeling like a Bond girl, Andy slid into the front seat in her sassy dress and fuck-me shoes and tried not to touch any of the shiny, complicated-looking instruments. Mike pulled carefully into the street, car so silent it felt like it wasn’t even turned on. Andy cooed appreciatively and felt she was in way over her head.

He took her to The Palm downtown. It was upscale without being too stuffy – he had thought about Maestro or something really exceptional, but those places made him nervous. He was already nervous enough. The Palms was a partner of the Capitals organization and always took good care of the guys. They were seated in a booth toward the back and Mike ordered a bottle of Syrah.

Andy smiled, “That’s my favorite.”

There was a half-empty bottle on your kitchen counter, he didn’t say.

He let her approve the wine. She ordered in good French, so he changed his choice at the last second to avoid stumbling over any words. The waiter eyed her rather greedily and Mike swore he was trying to look down her dress. When he left, Andy made a face that told him she had seen it too. Then she actually ate a roll from the bread basket. His brain mewed weakly.

Andy watched Mike watching her. The scowl on his face when the waiter flirted was adorably similar to the tough guy look he tried to pass off in his official Caps photo. Still not too confident, she thought as she reached for his hand across the table. He wrapped her fingers in his tightly.

They ate and talked, and eventually Mike brought up hockey. Tomorrow was a big game so Andy didn’t want to psych him out, but he seemed okay and even mentioned the team’s issues and a few things he wanted to improve on. For desert Andy ordered something chocolate: Mike had two bites, she ate the rest. When they were finished, the maitre-d brought her coat to the table. As he opened the door to the street, people were coming in.

“Mike!” Alex said, peeling his arm from around a very skinny blond to shake hands. The girl scowled.

Mike’s hackles rose, fight or flight coming to his mind. But Alex had already moved on. Ignoring the baleful stare of his date, he turned to Andy. “I am Alex,” he said generously, like he was the King introducing himself to a housekeeper. His huge hand lifted hers to his lips.

Andy smiled tightly. Ew gross, this is who could have called me. She reached for Mike with her free hand and he stepped in, holding tight. She forced herself to smile, not wanting to make a problem for Mike. “I’m Andy, nice to meet you.”

Alex raised his eyebrows. “Andy. I’ve heard a lot about you.” He gave Mike a meaningful, completely obvious look before letting his eyes roam slowly over Andy from head to toe. “Too bad you are leaving, but maybe we meet again soon.”

She nearly ran from the restaurant. In her haste, she failed to really look at his date – was she a working girl? Was she one of Susanna’s? Was Alex the client who recommended Mike? Get a grip! It wouldn’t do to have a panic attack at the valet stand. Mike stayed behind her, hand resting on her lower back. When his zillion-dollar car rolled to a stop, she felt a flood of disgust.

Goddamnshitfuck, Mike thought. Ever since coming back a little more mature from the summer, Mike’s opinion of Alex had changed. He was a great player, they were still friends, still hung out. But Mike had stopped looking at Alex as a role model, the big-man-on-campus he aspired to be. Now some of Alex’s antics seemed sloppy and offensive. Mike still wanted to be a star, but more because it helped the team succeed than so he could get laid and buy shiny toys. To have seen Alex now, with Andy… worst luck ever. Andy stood stock still until the parking attendant opened her door.

Mike drove around the corner and pulled over in a loading zone. “Andy, I’m sorry. What he said, that he’d heard a lot about you… it’s not how it sounds. I just….”

“He’s the one who recommended you,” Andy stated the obvious.

Mike nodded. “He asked your name today. I have to admit, I was really relieved he didn’t know you.”

“He wouldn’t,” she said, but didn’t stop long enough to elaborate. “I didn’t know that girl with him, I wonder if she’s….” She’s what? A whore? A working girl? Like me?

“She’s Russian. Someone from home, that’s why he didn’t introduce her – she doesn’t speak English.”

“So he doesn’t call anymore?”

The tiny note of hope in her voice made Mike want to punch something. But he couldn’t lie to her about this. “He still calls.”

They sat a moment in silence considering what would happen when Alex called and requested Andy. Because he obviously would. He’d all but asked her “how much?” with the look on his face in the restaurant. And he would be… different that Mike. They both knew that. Alex was competitive enough that he would have called for Andy even if he didn’t like her, just to fuck with Mike. But it didn’t seem liking her would be a problem.

Be cool, Andy. You knew something like this would eventually happen. Hell, it’s supposed to happen! According to Susanna’s math, the guys would recommend Andy to each other, to other players. Her client list would grow. That was the whole idea. Now it was happening and for the first time since she knocked on Mike’s hotel room door, she wanted to throw up.

“Well, he’s less scary off the ice,” Andy offered.

Mike hid his left hand between the door and steering wheel, hoping she couldn’t see where his knuckles were white from gripping so hard. “He’s not a bad guy. Just kind of an attention-whore.” He was trying to shake it off, to keep it from ruining the rest of the evening.

Andy gave him a deadpan stare. “Says the guy in the white Lamborghini.” Then she cracked a smile. Nervous breakdown some other time, she reminded herself she was still on the clock. Less than a day till Mike’s next game. She lifted her hand to the back of Mike’s neck so he would be sure she was only kidding.

He took a deep breath. He hadn’t planned on going out after dinner but just now it seemed too awkward to take her home. More time, that’s what they needed. Mike drove them to a wine bar a few miles away. The maitre-d recognized him and showed them to a small, cozy booth in the back.

“So popular,” Andy teased as she slid onto the bench. Mike made for the other side of the table, but she patted the space next to her. He just fit, broad shoulders taking up all the space she didn’t. She needed to be near him, physically. It felt like he would protect her.

He draped an arm behind her and read the menu over her shoulder. “I put a wine room in my condo, and the owner here helped me pick just about everything in it,” Mike explained. On cue the owner himself turned up to say hello and take their order.

“Okay, now you’re popular,” she turned toward him in the close confines of the booth. He smelled warm and expensive, which was her feeling of this night overall. Wined and dined, Susanna had said that was one of the perks of the job. Not a stranger to nice places, Andy hadn’t expected her financial trouble to make her see everything as a dollar sign. Everything except Mike.

Why do you do this? he wanted desperately to ask. He’d known her 24 hours and could easily see that she was worth more than whatever her price tag read. He kissed her cheek and earned a shy smile, dimples appearing. He kissed her again.

Andy let herself forget Ovechkin and money and everything else she was worried about. She could worry about those things after Mike’s game – for now, she just wanted to be here for him. His thick, solid body was warm against her side, no space between them. He was telling a story about the team’s last road trip; she was half-listening and watching the corners of his mouth twitch with a smile.

When he laughed at the end of the story, she did too without knowing why. Then she kissed him. Can’t help it, she thought, her lips firmly planted on his in the most chaste move she could manage.

Can’t stop, Mike knew as he fought to keep his mouth closed against her kiss.

Mike politely declined another round from the owner. Andy found herself happy to see his ostentatious car because it was taking them somewhere they could be alone. She assumed it was a hotel, and looked confused when he turned into a residential part of town.

“Do you mind if we go to my house?” he asked, suddenly unsure. Too soon? Too personal? Should be conducting our business in a neutral location?

“You just want to show me your wine room,” she smirked. Yes I want to go to your house, she thought. And no this is probably not a good idea.
____

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Chapter 4

Andy woke to the unfamiliar sensation of another body wrapped around her. She lay on her side, head resting on a rather large bicep. The matching arm reached around to her stomach, hand flat on her bare skin. Knees notched behind hers, bent at the same angle and their owner breathed slowly and evenly against the base of her neck.

Don’t panic, she thought. Staying still, it was easy to let her imagination run wild with the fantasy of reality – waking up tangled in him as truth. He exhaled warmly into her hair and shifted in his sleep, notching his arm more tightly around her middle as if dreaming possessively. Warm and snug, Andy pushed common sense from her mind and drifted back to sleep.

She rolled onto her back, waking him up. He wasn’t used to sleeping next to someone, his body mimicking her position naturally with the physical need to be close to her. She was soft and sultry in his arms, making him wonder how he ever stayed calm enough to fall asleep. Half a lucid thought and he hoped she wouldn’t wake up with his erection poking her in the thigh. He settled into her side, one leg over hers, and tried to slip back into a dream that looked pretty much exactly like his reality right now.

When he woke again she was still sleeping. Checkout from the hotel was in two hours, thought he would gladly have extended it to stay with her. Is this a second day? he wondered. Or is the morning after considered part of last night? He had the money, that didn’t matter at all. But was she… booked? Is she already spending tonight with someone else?

In the dark of the hotel room he contemplated a series of increasingly desperate scenarios: he would help her get a regular job; he would support her; he would marry her tomorrow and make sure she never had to do this again.

You’re an asshole, he told himself as he let go of her for the first time, rolling onto his back. She doesn’t want you. She clearly doesn’t need to be rescued by some pathetic fool who could barely hold it together long enough to have the sex he paid for. This girl… this girl. As the magic of the night drained away, the lie he’d willingly believed seemed hugely impossible. I shouldn’t have asked her to stay. If she’d gone, I could have at least kept my illusions. She stirred next to him, snuggling back into his body where he’d put space between them. He closed his eyes, steeling himself against the smooth heat of her body and the scent of her hair. Despite his deepening self-disgust, his penis twitched beneath the sheets as she pulled herself close. Fuck. He hated himself for being so weak.

“Hi,” she murmured sleepily, lifting her head. Long, silky hair tickled his arm and washed across his chest. She smiled drowsily. Her slightly smudged makeup looked even sexier than the night before, like she’d had a really good time.

Gray, he knew instantly. Her eyes are gray. And he was right back where he started.

Jesus was the first thought that came to Andy’s mind. His hair was flat from sleeping on his side. Those soft, full lips she’d tasted so many times were a little dry, like they waited for her kiss. She didn’t need to look beneath her arm or leg for proof that his body was as incredible as she remembered. So enthralled, she nearly missed the look of hesitation that flashed in his eyes.

No, please. Please don’t say I couldn’t help. Andy brought her hand to his face and once again touched the bruise beneath his eye – it was dark black and blue now, angry and heavy-looking. He closed his eye as she brushed the skin.

“Does it hurt?” she asked softly.

He shook his head no. “Is it ugly?”

Andy waited from him to look at her. “You could never be ugly.”

God, stop doing that, he wished. Stop being so good at your job. But he was already doing something else. He rolled into her, ignoring the part of his heart that said he was in danger. She latched onto him with arms and legs, no way for either of them to change their minds.

Give in to me, Andy thought. She kissed him, morning breath and all, and he instantly surrendered. His kiss was heated, passionate but something of last night’s fear had subsided. He ran his hands over her body, naked beneath the sheets, raising chills of anticipation across her skin. Lower down, his rising excitement pulsed persistently against her stomach.

It was easy this time, or at least easier, to quiet his inner warning system. Maybe she had given him a little confidence after all. He pressed her thighs apart with his knees and touched every part of her he could reach. She moved onto his hand, taking his fingers deeper inside as she whispered encouraging sounds. Then Andy turned her attention to him, stroking his hard-on with a firm hand until he trembled with desire. She slid the tip of his cock over the wetness he’d created.

Not okay, this is not okay, she thought as she reached for a condom. Andy knew it was wrong to wake up wanting him, but her body had not gotten the message. As he filled the space in her with his hot flesh, she moaned against his neck, “Oh God.”

Her words calmed his mind while his body rioted. She drew him in, pulled at him, her body practically begging for more. That cannot be fake, he wanted to believe. She can lie, she can sell, but she cannot make this happen by will alone. They moved together, steadily and without the anxious rush of the night before. Andy felt then he’d needed release, needed to control something just a little. This morning, it might be her turn.

He was surprised when she rolled on top. He was even more surprised when she smiled down at him, long twisted waves of hair draped over her shoulders, reaching her gorgeous, creamy breasts. She spread her long fingers across his flexed abs and shimmied herself around on his cock.

Andy moaned without even hearing herself. His stomach and thighs where taut beneath her hands and ass. She lifted and dropped, twisted and rolled, using him to pleasure herself. Their eyes stayed locked together, each watching to see if the other’s mask would crack. Judging by the look on his face, he was enjoying her too. She leaned in and swept her nipples over his chest, causing him to grab her sides and lift his hips, driving himself hard into her, lifting her with ease. She kissed him and tugged his bottom lip between hers. Then she moved his hand toward the middle and pressed his thumb into her clit.

No fucking way, he almost said out loud. She was gorgeous, delicious and everything she did screamed that she wanted him: she kissed him, she climbed on top, now she was going to let him watch as he got her off. When she smiled, dimples appearing, he got even harder.

This is totally selfish. He was spectacular to look at and even better to feel. He had needed her, been vulnerable before her, all but asked for her help. My help. And soon he would be gone, this incredible man she’d wanted from the sidelines for as long as she could remember. Before he left, Andy was going to get something to remember him by.

His strong fingers moved surely, circling and varying pressure. She complimented his motion by sliding herself up and down on his dick. It wasn’t long before her orgasm was bouncing like a ping-pong ball, coming so close only for him to lighten his touch and send it away. Then he brought it back. And again. The fifth or sixth time, she got so close she gasped.

“Stop playing with me!” she squealed.

“And miss this, are you kidding?” He smiled, wide and genuine, still rolling her clit with his thumb.

She gave him threatening look and bucked hard onto him. Two can play that game. She bit back a smile – he must feel a little better now. On her next stroke, she dropped her hips as far as they could go and froze, holding down so he stayed bottomed-out inside her.

“Fuck,” he rolled his head back, exposing his neck. She quickly leaned down and bit the soft flesh. In his mind it was more like Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuckyeeessssssssssss. She was laughing and smiling, she was playing with him and she wanted him to play back. She wanted his personality. He pushed her back to sitting and set to work on her body.

Andy’s breath caught as he stroked hard, no longer kidding around. He matched strokes with his hands and hips, pumping at her from both sides with increasing force. Every time the shudder produced by his fingers faded, another pulsed from his cock. There was nowhere for her to go and no time to get there. She was coming.

Make the noise. He remembered what she’d sounded like last night, the mouth-watering, dick-hardening sound of her losing control.

She gasped sharply, then her body gave out. He picked the high note and strummed her clit as she bounced herself around in his lap. A bolt of warmth struck her stomach and flooded through her lower body. Her mouth fell open as a moan sobbed from her lungs. Andy ground herself around, digging for everything her pleasure had to give as he held on and watched.

Thank God. She came hard, onto his hand, and his whole body felt electrocuted. When she made the sound he’d been craving, he came too. He pulled her shoulders down, bringing her into his chest and crushing her mouth with his. He came with her wrapped in his arms, pumping three or four times before the tension in his body broke.

They lay together, not an inch between any part of their bodies, catching their breath. Andy’s heart pounded against his chest, putting the finishing touch on his total satisfaction.

“Can I see you again?” he blurted out, his brain and mouth failing to communication. A strand of her hair stuck to his forehead with sweat.

She opened her eyes to find him looking nervous and hopeful. “I would love that.”

Whew, he almost said. “Do I just call….”

“Uh,” Andy paused, not actually knowing the answer. “I guess so. Yeah, call.” Then she caught herself. You idiot! Way to make it look like no one ever calls for you again!

He said a silent prayer. Don’t let this make me look crazy. The last thing he needed was everyone thinking he was stalking a call girl. But he didn’t want to wait, not if he didn’t absolutely have to. Just as much, he wanted to know. If she was with him, she couldn’t be with someone else. He lifted onto his elbow, leaning over her. “Are you free tonight?”

YES! she wanted to yell. She wanted repeat business, wanted to impress Susanna. She didn’t want to risk getting a call from another player. But most of all, she wanted him. There was no point in pretending, as she lay half underneath his perfect body, sharing every breath: she wanted him. Andy steadied herself in time. “Yes, tonight is great.”
____

They dressed in last night’s clothes, talking easily about nothing. Andy fixed her makeup in preparation for the walk of shame. But he held the hotel room door open for her, put his arm around her waist in the elevator, walked her to her car.

“Dinner? I could pick you up at 7.”

“Perfect,” she punched his number into her phone, assigned a name then called him.

He leaned in and kissed her, lightly, like they were finishing a first date. I guess we are, he thought. “See you tonight.”

Andy climbed into her car and waved to him through the window. She watched him get smaller as he headed for the valet circle, her body aching slightly at his absence. Tonight, she told herself.

Two blocks later, her phone buzzed. She knew who it was, knew what it would say. But she giggled anyway at the name on the tiny screen: Mike Green.
____

Author's Note:

Okay, I know you all REALLY wanted a Penguin. This was a Mike Green story from the very beginning, but once everyone started lobbying for a Pen I came thisclose to changing it. I removed some things that were clearly not Sid (tattoo, etc)... but I couldn't make it work in my mind. I'd already mentioned an NBA team, which Pitt doesn't have, but it was more about the attitude of the story. I guess I don't think Sid stumbles as hard as Mike does sometimes.  Plus, I couldn't figure out how to let Sid and Andy be seen together without having to make it a big deal in Pittsburgh. Drinks in the hotel bar and leaving with the same girl the next morning? That's a whole other Sid story. 

As for Max and Kris... Mer is currently having her way with them far more intensely than I ever could: Rolling Thunder and Razorblade Kisses.

I know that no one likes Mike Green except for me, but hopefully you're liking this story enough to keep reading! Plus I know you all hate other people way more than Mike (I'm looking at you, Ovechkin!) and I will do my best to bring you some drama. 

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Chapter 3

Andy carefully watched his internal debate. She had no doubt what the issue was and no idea what he wanted to do. For her own part, she was a little more ready and willing than she wanted to admit. Straddling him had seemed like a good idea before they were divided by just a tiny slip of lace. Wanting to tempt him without scaring him, she reached down for his hand – the same one she’d held in the bar. Using both of her hands she twined into his fingers and spread his palm wide, then ran her thumbs up the middle together and out over the top. She pressed the soft spot between each finger before tracing the groove up the center again. His hands were the strongest she’d ever felt. After a few more rounds, she brought his palm to her lips and gently kissed the center.

He couldn’t stop himself. He wanted to – even thought about it for a whole heartbeat. She’s not mine. His brain’s protest drowned in the heavy pull of desire. The hand she held cupped her cheek and drew her into a kiss.

Andy’s stomach fluttered, like the floor had just dropped away. His lips were soft; she tasted whiskey and longing in a kiss somehow both cautious and overwhelming. Her mind went blank in a spike of desire and she kissed him back.

Thank God. He wanted her so badly, wanted her to want him; he felt confused and grateful about how she seemed to care for him. It came as a surprise to feel so conflicted – he knew what he was doing when he made the phone call. But then everything about her was surprising.

“Andrea,” he said her name for the first time as his lips touched her neck. It sounded foreign to her, a persona she needed for protection, a secret identity. One foot slid down the length of his calf, curling around his sculpted muscle. If she closed her eyes and felt only through her body, she didn’t need that shield.

“Andy,” she said. “You can call me Andy.”

That suits, he thought. Andrea was the woman he’d expected tonight, Andy was the one who’d arrived: the one who touched his black eye and kissed him without pretense, the one who read science-fiction and made fun of his socks. Around Andy it was okay to be shy, be vulnerable and in pain. Andrea could come and go; it was Andy he was really after.

“Andy,” he whispered, closing over her mouth again.

Her body buzzed like a live wire. He was hot to the touch, searing her skin where they made contact. She drew herself in alongside him, her bare leg slipping over top and resting on his thigh. His hand snaked up her back, underneath his t-shirt.
____

Vivian giggled. Andy blushed like a schoolgirl as her friend forced her to spell out exactly what she wanted to know. “So how do you…,” she smiled in embarrassment and drained the end of the wine bottle into her glass. “How do you get started?”

Vivian sipped and smiled. “Honey, that part is easy. Maybe an awkward moment or two, but you can just bowl those over. Once you’re horizontal, the rest just happens. It’s not like it’s your first time.”

I know, Andy told herself. It’s just sex.

“Don’t worry about that part. Getting there – the talking and flirting and being coy – that’s harder because you have to read the person, gauge what they want when they might not even know themselves. You have to be a little bit psychic, but if you just go slow and observe you’ll do great.”

“And the rest…,” Andy was still unsure.

“Don’t expect it to rock your world. Though you may rock theirs.”
____

Now or never, she thought. Once they were past this point there was no way she could lose him. His kiss had gone from unsure to eager, like he was testing the waters and found them warm. He still lay mostly on his stomach, hiding the next step in this dance. As best she could Andy started to slide underneath him.

I can’t, he knew. He couldn’t stop, he couldn’t resist, he couldn’t even make a solid argument anymore for why he should not do this. There was no way to tell if she actually wanted him or just wanted to do her job. He would never know if there was anything about him she genuinely liked. He’d never get the chance to do this honestly, to do it right. She was here, now, but she was already gone. He gave in and met her halfway, bringing himself down gingerly. He was so hard it hurt and there was no keeping it secret as it pressed into her thigh. Andy’s leg fit between his and she slowly twisted her hips, just once, feeling him out.

Wow. Her hands moved over his sides and thighs, the places she hadn’t touched before. Thoughts got sloppy, the walls and fail-safes she’d built crumbled under the weight of his body. She nipped gently at his earlobe, catching it between her lips. He turned into her mouth, tongue exploring as she let him kiss her deeply and returned the favor. Somewhere in a distant corner of her brain an alarm wailed – man overboard! – but she was going down with this ship.

Andy lifted the hem of her top and he took the hint. The t-shirt felt different in his hands as he peeled it away – like it was something exotic or expensive, something worthy of wrapping such a gift. Slowly it revealed the body he’d seen in the bath; the smooth, taut skin of her stomach, the curve and swell of her chest. She helped pull it over her head and tossed it to the floor. His hands roamed the newly discovered land, fingers soft over the lines that defined her stomach and the round underside of her breast. His lips tasted her nipple, gently sucking and flicking the way she’d done to his ear. Judging by her hands on his neck, she enjoyed his efforts.

Wouldn’t she though? Wouldn’t she make me feel like I’m the only guy in the world?

Andy was lost in a delusion of delicious warmth and weight. He took his time, exploring every part of her by touch and taste. They still wore their underwear but it was not doing much to keep them apart. She dragged her hand up his thigh and slipped it between their bodies. He hissed softly, taking in a surprised breath.

Please, please, please, he begged of himself. Don’t go to soon. Don’t ruin this. It took all his willpower not to come at the touch of her hand, at the perfect pressure when she began rolls her fingers over his shorts. So distracted, he forgot to kiss her and when he did, she cheated beneath the waistband and down inside his boxer briefs.

A small moan escaped her lips as she stroked his shaft for the first time. The tension increased tenfold and Andy wondered if she could finish herself off before they even got started, just in case. Would that make him feel wanted? Or unnecessary? She felt that he wanted her to enjoy this, wanted to please her. How could he not when he wanted her so badly? Her body responded easily, writhing against him in time with the motion of her hand. He bit softly into the top of her shoulder. Forget finishing early, she expected he’d be able to take care of her the old-fashioned way.

He’d never been so far gone. His hand raced to her hip and followed the lace of her panties toward the cleft between her legs. She arched her back as he grazed her clit, grinding down onto his hand. In return, she squeezed his cock hard. The tip of one finger ran the length of her slit, coming away hot and wet. A tiny sigh of pleasure came from his throat, feeling her as ready as he was. Surely that could not be a lie. He rubbed harder, added another finger, hooked beneath the fabric and helped himself to the soft, slick folds of her sex. She moaned again.

Holy shit. Andy would have had trouble remembering her name, forget all the complicated reasons that led her to this place. She reached down to cup his balls, earning another small noise. She might come too soon through no effort of her own. With a flick of the wrist she started tugging off his shorts.

Finally. Fucking hell. It was going to take a lot of control he didn’t have to keep from coming the second he was inside her. Even the thought of being inside her was incredible, his fingers currently buried in the sweetest of spots. He shimmied out of his underwear and pushed them away, then for the first time he lifted his body up and away.

She lay haphazardly on the duvet, dark hair tossed around her. Fair, creamy skin glowed like she was an apparition, a mirage he dreamed up in desperation. Pink, pert nipples stood at attention, begging for his mouth. Her delicious lips curled into a sly smile as she watched him, watching her.

“You are incredible,” he said honestly, feeling immense relief just saying it out loud. He had to say something, to let her know he valued her, he cared about more than fucking her and sending her home with a purse full of cash. I bet everyone says that, he thought, but he had to do something.

Go on, she told herself. You really want to help, tell him the truth. “I’ve had a crush on you for years.”

He blushed hard in surprise and ducked his head. His heart sang and his erection pulsed angrily, afraid it was being forgotten. That has to be a line, right? That has to be part of what I’m paying for. But desire is a powerful drug, and he really wanted to believe.

Andy held her breath, unsure if she’d gone too far. They don’t pay to fuck fangirls, Susanna had said. They want something more; something better, smarter, hotter. Andy hoped she hadn’t just ruined what he had come here to find.

His palms flat on her hips rolled panties down and off her thighs. There was nothing more to be said – he didn’t want to hear anything that might force him to face the reality that he could only feel like this if he was willing to buy it. He reached back and dropped the last scrap of clothing that separated them.

The sight of him kneeling over her took that breath Andy had been holding, along with all the other air in her lungs. Chiseled and broad, beautiful beyond anything she’d ever seen and still with a small hint of darkness in his eyes, of despair lingering. The bruise on his face was already deeper. He reached for the nightstand, she took the packet from him and tore away the foil. She stroked him, hand very full, before unrolling the condom along his length.

He waited for it, like bracing for the impact of a big hit you can’t outrun, praying silently that he could get past the beginning, could make his happen. She watched his face; saw him bite his pouty lower lip, saw his eyelashes flutter as her fingers ran down the smooth, thick heft of his cock.

A string of expletives leapt to his mind. He wanted to cry, to faint, to fuck her hand until his brain exploded. When he felt the condom was all the way on, he took a deep breath and opened his eyes. Her beautiful face, that right dimple still making him want to stare at her for days, looked up at him with a knowing smile. Dear God, he thought as he allowed himself to believe she was looking at him, really him, not a job or a client or a stack of cash. With her hand on his throbbing hard-on and her body promising to fix everything in his world, he let himself go. He chose the lie.

Forbidden fruit, Andy thought. She had never wanted something so badly. Telling herself she shouldn’t want it only made it worse – she would have gone home with him from a bar, from a game, from the fucking supermarket – but it never would have been like this. The distance between them, filled with money and desperation, disappeared with a sonic boom.

Andy pulled his shoulders down, signaling GO!, and they got frantic. He prodded her slick entrance twice with the head of his penis, her heat luxurious even through the thin film he wore. That was all he could handle. With a low, fierce moan, he pressed his cock all the way up into her ripe pussy.

“Yes,” she breathed without thinking. He moved lightly, settling himself inside her, terrified his next move might be his last. It was like breaking open a freshly baked cookie, melted chocolate dripping deliciously: the first bite was always the most dangerous.

“Andy,” he said as he risked a stroke. She held on to his shoulders, muscles rock hard beneath her hands, and let him set the pace. He was extremely hard and extremely big – the dizzying combination rewiring Andy’s brain. Good thing she’d been wet for hours, since he first opened the door.

He tried to regain his senses. Being inside her was even better than he’d anticipated, somehow wetter, hotter, tighter than he’d allowed himself to imagine. The blood in his body beat like a drum, pulsing his dick where it was nestled deep into her. With a big breath, he pumped his hips and slowly began to move. She matched his motion as his hands slid under her ass and lifted her closer.

“Oh God,” she gasped, the angle pushing him down into her with force. She arched her back and ground herself onto him. The temperature in the room had risen a hundred degrees. Andy grabbed his neck and kissed him, hard and long, tongue deep in his mouth as it begged him to do the same to her body.


That is a real kiss, he thought triumphantly. It was too late to turn back now, but at least that part of what was happening was real. He felt victorious as he thrust harder. Andy squeaked in pleasure, the sound passing from her mouth to his. He strove for another gorgeous little noise and he got it. With an arm around her back, he lifted and leaned, until he was kneeling and Andy was sitting on his lap, legs around him. He tilted her back just enough to capture a nipple with his mouth and used his arms and legs to bounce her onto him.

Fucking hell. Andy’s head lolled back as she cupped her breasts and lifted them, offering up to his eager mouth. She pulled her legs in, fitting herself into his lap tightly and taking his strokes as deep as she could. The bicep pressed between her shoulder blades was huge and taut, holding her up easily with heavy confidence. Confidence, she knew. All he needed was a little confidence. Evidently he had found it. His other hand moved across her stomach, tickling her side before raking into the small patch of hair that rubbed against his body.

He flicked his thumb down and grazed her clit. She pinged like a harp string. He did it again and she gasped, he felt her get wetter as he began to massage the nub insistently. A wordless breath sobbed from her lungs.
Please, please, he begged silently. He wanted to satisfy her, to show her that he wasn’t some weak, pathetic sap. It was bad enough he’d gotten his ass kicked in a fight, called an escort service, almost cried when he asked if she had a boyfriend. He had to do something right for her. The idea of the succulent, incredible woman in his arms feeling sorry for him hurt more than anything that happened on the ice. If he’d been capable of swagger, he’d have wanted to amaze her, make her scream his name and see the face of God and be the best she’d ever had, but he didn’t have that bravado in him now. He just wanted her to make that noise again.

What am I doing here? she asked herself distantly. I am now officially a hooker and I’m about to come like a fucking supernova for someone I’ve fantasized about forever. Are you a whore after just one? Or does whore imply multiple guys? I honestly don’t care as long as he keeps touch… omigod.

Andy’s body was nearing a full boil. Her hands were in his hair, holding his face close. She gently kissed the black beneath his eye as he massaged her clit on a deep down-stroke. Her mouth fell open, her arousal peaked. “Harder,” she whispered. He listened, driving his rock-hard rod into her soaking pussy and struggling to hold his hand tight against her front. He didn’t have to wait long – five or six strokes later, Andy made another breathless, silent cry.

Fuck yes, he thought as her body rippled down the length of his dick like it was electrically charged. She writhed in his arms, clutching and pressing as an orgasm beat through her core and passed right to him. When he heard her breath tear away in a quivering shudder, he let go.

Andy felt his arms lock around her as he groaned in pleasure. Long, slow strokes milked her body as he came hard. He pressed them back, dumping her to the mattress and staying on top, snuggling his cock in as far as it could go and pumping himself dry deep within her. The tension released from his body like a dam breaking – he melted into a puddle of satisfaction and relief.

She traced her fingers along his hairline, behind his ear and over his neck. His breathing was even and easy for the first time all night. They stayed still so long she thought he might be sleeping, splayed out and still nestled inside her. I could sleep like this, she thought, settling her head back to do just that. She was drowsy in that shadowy, post-orgasm way that keeps anyone from thinking about what they’ve just done or who they’ve done it with. Andy didn’t want anything to happen, not just now, to ruin this.

He wasn’t asleep. He was inhaling the scent of her body, of her flowered perfume and the smell of her sex – darker, heavier, lusty. Now that she had done her job, he was afraid she’d be done with him. His body felt new, but his head and his heart kept right on stressing. If he didn’t move, didn’t speak, she couldn’t tell him goodbye. Right?

“Andy,” he mumbled. I said I wouldn’t do this…

“Mmm?” she purred into his ear.

“Will you stay the night with me?”

She moved her arm across his back, tying them closer together on the dark sea of the enormous bed. “I’m already sleeping.”
____