Unraveled, p.18
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       Unraveled, p.18

         Part #3 of Woodlands series by Jen Frederick
Page 19


  But I didnt feel awkward with Gray as I’d imagined I would. It could have been because he was experienced, but I just think it was him and how I felt like I knew him. Gray knew what he was doing and his enthusiasm and watchful attention to my needs made it an incredible experience. “Has it been a long time for you?”

  Gray hemmed and hawed and then turned a bit pink around his ears. I laughed low. I was too replete and satisfied to even be upset at the thought that he’d been with other women. Besides, I was the one in the car with his big hand stroking every inch of my body. Not anyone else.

  "Why, Gray Phillips, are you a ho-bag?"

  "No," he exclaimed. He rubbed a hand against the back of his neck, throwing his muscles into relief and making the cords of his neck stand out. It was a very sexy look on him but he seemed too agitated for it to be an affected pose. Perhaps everything looked sexy about Gray right now, from his vulnerability to his muscular body. "I have a couple friends with benefits," he finally admitted.

  "A couple?" I raised an eyebrow.

  This made Grays flush travel from his ears down his neck. "Three," he mumbled.

  I shot bolt upright. "You sleep with three different girls!"

  "Not at the same time. " He covered his eyes. "When you have FWBs its all about the sex. I dont pick up girls at bars and take them home at night because, well, it’s dangerous. Pregnancy. STIs. So I just have sex with three girls who are just as careful as I am. "

  "And none of these girls have feelings for you?” I asked skeptically. I couldn’t imagine having sex with someone more than once and not having feelings for them but this was the world I was heading into. What a bleak future, I thought.

  "Hell no. One of them is a resident at San Diego General. She barely has time to shit and eat so we hook up only when she remembers she’s a sexual being, which is like once a month, if that. At most, Im a live action dildo for her. "

  "And the others?"

  "Why are we talking about this?"

  "Dunno. Im kind of intrigued. " I was. I should be more appalled but he was like an introductory course in modern mating and I was obviously in need of an education.

  He sighed heavily. "Okay, the one I see more regularly is an on-base nurse. She does all the blood tests. We got to talking one day and one thing led to another. She doesnt want to be tied down to a military guy but right now, were all that’s in her path. "

  "A nurse and a doctor. You going to want me to dress up in nursing costume?"

  There was a prolonged silence as Gray appeared to contemplate this for far too long. "Gray!" I pretended to be shocked.

  "Sorry, sorry," he finally said. "Not that Im asking, but would you?"

  I shook my head at him but didnt say no. The idea of dressing up in a costume to have sex with him wasn’t a turn off. Not at all.

  "So the other?" I prompted.

  "EMT," he muttered through his fingers.

  "What was that?"

  “EMT," he said more clearly.

  "You do have some kind of medical fetish,” I declared. "What are you doing with me? Im a knitter. Should I take you over to the osteopath school and find some nice student for you?"

  "Shush, you. ” Gray pulled me down. "I dont know why theyre all in the medical profession. Probably because they have the same hang-ups as I do about safety before sex. It doesnt matter. I dont have it all that often and its meaningless. "

  "I don’t think so. " I reached down and stroked his chin. The stubble on his chin that had appeared in the afternoon and grown into the evening was prickly against my palm. I actually loved the feel of it, so different than the smoothness of my own. The contrast made me shiver. The roughness of his stubble against my breasts and my neck had been thrilling. Just the remembrance was sending tendrils of excitement through my bloodstream.

  "Whys that?" he mumbled, sounding distracted. I drew my hand away slightly and his head followed me, seeking out my touch. I allowed myself a tiny private smile. We were connected.

  “It seems to me you do have relationships. They’re girls you have friendships with and then you have sex. Isn’t that some kind of attachment?”

  "No, because all we do is have sex. At times that are convenient to us. There are no preliminaries. I call her up or she calls me up, we meet, do the deed, and then go home. No sleepovers. No cuddling. "

  "That sounds really. . . Cold. " I wanted to say awful.

  "Its not," he replied curtly.

  "But how can the sex be any good?"

  "Its good if you know what youre doing. " The sides of his lips quirked up. "And I do. "

  "I know you do. " I traced a finger in and then out of the grooves on the sides of his mouth. The gold flecks in his eyes glowed. As if they were beckoning me, I leaned forward and placed my lips softly against the sides of his upturned lips. He didnt move but just allowed me to explore him. Bracing myself with my left arm, I ran my free hand over his chest, savoring each hard ridge. The curve of his shoulder flowed into a large muscled arm and lightly furred forearms. In contrast to the indolent ease of the rest of his body, his large hands were gripping the cushion. I was gratified by this show of both control and desire. I had no doubt that Gray could make my body feel good. It was the rest of me that I was worried about.

  "You have a beautiful body,” I told him, whispering soft kisses over the high cheekbones and the peak of his nose.

  "I think thats my line," he choked out.

  "Its not a line. ”

  Gray reached for my wandering hand and pulled me down gently over him, repositioning me so I lay between the V of his legs.

  "Maybe not. " He cupped my face in his hands and kissed me. His lips were both soft and firm, and at first, it was just a plush meeting of flesh. When he parted his mouth and I felt the wetness of his tongue against the seam of my lips, I couldnt stop my own answer. The touch of his tongue against mine made me shudder. Collapsing against him, I clutched at his shoulder and ate at his mouth with a fervor matched by his own hunger.

  He pushed his hips up, his groin pressing directly against my center. The sensation was so exquisite that I nearly came from just the pressure. This is so much better than touching myself.

  "My God," he whispered against my lips. "Say it again. "

  I hadnt realized I said it out loud. "This feels better than what Ive been doing at home. "

  "Tell me," he asked, rocking his hips against me. Reaching down, he pulled my legs over his, switching our positions so that my legs were outside of his. I could control the contact better and I ground down. I let out a moan of frustration.

  Gray was experienced enough to know what that sound meant. He reached between us, slipping his big hand down to cup me between my legs. "Tell me," he demanded again. "Ill get you off again. ” Rubbing the heel of one hand directly against my pubic bone, his other hand pulled at my hair so he could leave a trail of wet hot kisses along my throat. "You tell me what you think about when you touch yourself and I promise, I will bring you off, and it will be good. ”

  Idve promised anything to him at this point.

  "I think about being licked between my legs. " I bit my tongue and whimpered a little as Gray rubbed two fingers against me. My inner thighs felt damp and I squirmed at the thought of how wet I was, but Gray wouldnt let me move away, just kept up a relentless stroking rhythm. My toes curled as I felt a tightness seize body.

  "What else?" he growled in my ear. "When you touch yourself, do you get your fingers wet or do you just rub on top?"

  "Wet," I choked out. "I get wet. "

  "Im going to see just how wet. ” His fingers dipped inside me. “Very wet," he said and his approving tone made me feel sexy instead of uncomfortable. The touch of his rough fingers against my sensitive skin was delicious. Reaching down, I pressed my hand against his although I wasnt sure if I wanted him to stop or touch me harder. Then he started talking again and I was done for.

  "I cant wait until we’re
in a bed and the lights are on. I’ll be staring at your pussy. " He ran his tongue against my neck while his fingers were busy between my legs, stroking me with short, firm movements. "I bet youre pink and your honey will be dripping off of it. Ill prop your ass up on a couple of pillows and then Ill kneel between your legs. My first motion will be to lick you from right here," he curled both of his fingers close to my most sensitive area and then swept them forward, "to here. Ill suck your little clit into my mouth until it’s hard and while I’m doing that, I’ll slip my fingers inside you and pump you until your sweet come floods my hand. " While he talked, his fingers pinched my clit and then he slipped first one finger and then another inside me. And that was all it took. I came all over him, the words, the touching, all of it sending me out of my mind. My hips came off the seat, meeting the thrusts of his fingers eagerly.

  He stroked me all throughout my shudders and then when my body had quieted and my legs had collapsed, he withdrew his fingers and cupped me tenderly. His lips came down on mine again.

  "That was beautiful. Jesus. " He shook his head against my body. "Sam, I dont know whats going on between us, but this is too damn good not to explore, even temporarily. "

  Smoothing my hands over the planes of his shoulder blades and down his broad back, I reveled in the feel of his weight pressing me into me. "Yes. " It was the only word that mattered now.


  WHAT WE’D SHARED IN THE car changed something between Gray and me. And it wasn’t just sex. It was the connecting we did afterward. I wondered if he could hear how much he actually didn’t enjoy his random soulless hook ups—calling himself a live action dildo wasn’t much of a compliment. They weren’t even his friends, even if he liked to use the label “friends with benefits. ” Obviously his cheating ex had affected him badly, and he’d not gotten over it. But guys that went into the military didn’t like to admit that they were weak.

  Will had come home after basic training and I’d asked him why his feet looked like they had been tortured. Was it called boot camp because your feet took on the smell and look of a worn rubber boot?

  But he’d scoffed at my concern. His fucked-up feet were a sign of his achievements, I guess. I tried to get him to get a pedicure with me, but he’d said he wasn’t going to spend any minute of his leave having some chick paint his toenails. He’d never hear the end of it. I suspected Gray was just the same way. Admitting that a girl hurt his heart so much that he was afraid to get close again wasn’t in his DNA. But I recognized grief and loss and sorrow and pain. I’d lived with it for years. Those feelings were intimate friends of mine, and they dogged Gray too.

  I drove him back to Adam’s house. He invited me in, but I didn’t want to wake up in a house full of guys and neither of us were ready for him to go back to the condo. Heck, even I went back to my parents’ house. I told Gray I was too tired to drive anywhere but the truth was that I was scared to go back to my condo. Scared that Will would be there, looking at me with disapproval. He’d be able to smell Gray on me and see the lazy look of satisfaction in my eyes. Id just had an orgasm with someone other than Will, and I wasnt ready to bring that home. Instead, I climbed into my Will-free bed and dreamt of another man between my legs.

  When I woke up feeling guilty and turned on, I called Eve for some courage and advice.

  "You arent supposed to have feelings for the rebound guy, right?" I asked Eve the next morning.

  "Right!" she exclaimed. "Tell me you arent falling for soldier boy. "

  I didnt say anything.

  "Are you there?" Eve asked.

  "You told me not to tell you anything. "

  "Dammit, Sam. " The gusty sigh whistled over the telephone line.

  "I know but hes so vulnerable. " I told Eve about his friends with benefits.

  "So hes not over his ex?"

  "No, hes over her, but hes still suffering from the negative side effects. I get it. "

  "Hes not a widower. " Eve tried to depress my mounting excitement.

  "I know, but hes suffered. I feel, I dont know, like he’s a kindred spirit or something. "

  "I think youre reading too much into this. "

  "Im not," I protested. Wed even exchanged phone numbers before hed kissed me sweetly good night. The memory of last night made my body tingle all over. "Hes very sweet beneath his prickly exterior. He really longs for a special connection with someone but is too scared to reach for it. "

  Eve contemplated this for a moment. "That sounds like how you feel. "

  "Could be. Could be we both feel this way. "

  "Just be careful. " Eve sighed.

  "Thanks for the pep talk. " I smiled and hung up at her blowing me a raspberry over the phone.

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