He was tipping ash onto one of Mrs Jones’ ugly pink china saucers, and I was gazing at him, lovingly.
Improper though it may be, we lay next to one another on my bed. Mrs Jones was out. Mrs Jones wouldn’t have approved, even though we were engaged, with a June wedding date set. And smoking, the smoking was the cherry on top of the cake of depravity. She would never get over the shock.
I didn’t want to think of Mrs Jones. Instead I concentrated on the coral imprint of my lipstick, clinging to the white paper shell between his lips; thinking of ten minutes before when he’d gently put it to my mouth so I could take a drag. It was almost another form of kissing; an increased intimacy, here on this single bed no wider than a pillowcase. With only the ugly saucer between us.
“Isn’t it funny how shocking it would be if people knew we were lying here like this? Engaged to be married, and we can’t be left alone in a bedroom for fear we’ll behave inappropriately. And it’s worse for you. You have the eyes of the entire parish on you.”
He laughed and stubbed the end of his fag out, setting the saucer on the bedside cabinet behind him.
“What brought this on? You know I wasn’t a china doll when I proposed.”
“No, of course not.”
“Are you worried I’ll do something I shouldn’t? Please don’t, I want us to wait. I would wait until judgement day for you.”
He was making it worse. I was making it worse, the words all wrong and I felt as if I was judging him for the other girls he had been with before me, before he had taken orders. He hadn’t asked me about other boys; he hadn’t needed to, that information had been volunteered within days of our first tryst; as if I wanted to prove to him I was good and pure and deserving of him. Because in truth, I didn’t believe I was.
His hand was on my wrist, stroking where the blood showed blue beneath the skin, first back and forth, then circles.
“Round and round the garden, like a teddy bear…” he was smiling.
“One step. Two step. Tickly under there!”
Laughing, he reached up with both hands, digging them under my armpits, nuzzling his face into my neck with his chest against mine. I giggled in spite of myself, and when he turned to kiss me, I was more than willing for the embrace of his tongue. Only, when he pulled away, my mouth betrayed me.
“I… I touch myself.” The words came out in a rush and I looked down at my hands. My hands which I used to type letters, wash pots, cook dinners and pleasure myself to vivid dreams of my fiancé.
I couldn’t bear to look at him, and shifted away from him, onto my back. I could hear him laughing though, and his hand was on my belly.
“Is this what kept you quiet all afternoon?”
“It’s not as if we haven’t been… As if there haven’t been intimacies.” I still remembered the exact weight of his hand on my breast; how thrilling it was to feel my skin strain and pucker to something other than a winter chill. And his mouth on my neck, and the dances and picnics where we held one another closely and his body would shift and thicken against me and he’d blush, muttering that this was the effect I had on him. The kisses that lingered and lingered until I felt I might rise up off the floor and float away to the moon.
“Indeed not.” the hand slid further, into the dip where my waist flared outwards. The heaviness of his touch was delicious. But even so.
“It’s a sin.” I said in a small voice. “It’s a sin, even if you think of your priest fiancé when you do it.”
“Sinfulness isn’t simple. Do you believe what you do is as bad as lying? Or stealing? Or murder?”
“Does He? I know he believes in the purity and necessity of passion and love.”
Here was his mouth on my neck again. His sweet, saintly mouth.
“You remember the Song of Solomon.‘Draw me after you; let us run. The king has brought me into his chambers….’ ”
His voice, oh his voice was honey and whisky and my body seemed to ache from the want of him, less than an arm’s length away, but still too far, it seemed.
“Darling…. What can I say to comfort you?”
“I don’t know. I’m scared that I’m impure and not good enough for you. And that I won’t be good enough when you take me to bed on our wedding night. And that I want you so much it makes my head spin. I want to touch you. I want to feel your hands over every single inch of my body. And I hate myself for being unable to control-”
He placed his thumb over my mouth.
“Darling,” he repeated “My own, sweet babe.”
He kissed my cheek, my lips. His body was upon me again, powerful and gentle.
“Do not let your desire shame you. Or believe for one moment that I would ever think you weren’t worthy of my love, when each morning I wake astonished that such a kind, sweet, passionate girl is mine.”
“Oh…..” I whispered, lifting my mouth to his, my fingers to the buttons of his collar. I felt his hand beneath my skirt, exposing the flesh between my knickers and laddered stocking tops. His hands slid against the cheap satin of my knickers.
“Tell me what you want. Tell me.” He murmured into my ear, and my hands reached for his flies. The buttons seemed to come apart like magic. I raised my hips to meet him, and the hardening muscle behind those buttons.
“This. I want to feel you, like this.” And he sank against me, my skirt around my waist and his slacks gaping. Nothing but our underwear between us. He was kissing me again, and to feel him grow and stiffen against me felt odd and wonderful; the way he rocked into the well of my body with his own; in all its marvellous textures.
The silence was warm, thick with the scent of him, the smoke and acrid sweetness of Evening in Paris on my collarbone.
“Don’t stop. Keep going. Please.” The pressure as he ground his cock against the thin, wet material of my knickers touched the exact places I had done alone, each night. And the touch of him, the noise of his pleasure made it acute, urgent.
“I couldn’t even if I… Fuck….” He pressed harder; our kisses still sweet and passionate, our bodies boiling through all their layers of clothes and animalistic desire.
“Do it harder, please,” I whined, hooking my legs around his waist to pull him closer, allowing my stockinged heel to slide against his back.
“I’m not sure I’m going to last much longer.” His face looked pained.
“Are you hurting?”
“No, darling. The opposite. The exact opposite.”
“I feel like I’m going to explode into a shower of stars. I feel like nothing could be better than what is happening right now.”
He breathed heavily, laughing, and kissed my forehead.
My gaze grew wicked.
“But I know that when you fuck me it will be even better.”
“Oh Jesus,” he moaned as the words left my mouth. “Oh Molly,”
“I can’t wait for you to fuck me.”
“A chap could worry he won’t measure up.”
“You measure up, perfectly.” I moaned, reaching between us and placing my fingers firmly around his erection, drawing it up through his briefs. I only passed my hand across the shaft half a dozen times – with difficulty, and with it still held between his body and my own – before he began to moan louder, deeper.
I rubbed against him too, using his arousal to my own advantage. Over and over and over and I felt my thighs tense and my cunt begin to convulse only seconds before he gave a cry and I felt his cock jerking against me, and his own thick dampness soaking through his white cotton to my pink satin.
Overcome, I covered my face with my hands. I was weeping, at once consumed with shame.
“Hey, what’s this?” He gently moved my hands away and kissed the rivulets of tears.
“I’m sorry.” I whispered through sobs.
“Don’t be silly, Molly. Why on earth are you sorry?”
But I could not answer him, only weep, held securely in his arms and he, realising what had occurred, repeated his sermon of trust, passion and the glory of our love to me, knowing that one day I would believe him.