One Time Only

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On the slow train up to the mountain town, Helen had the usual stirrings of anxiety and expectation. Almost the same curiosity and hope she might have felt as a theatre curtain rose, but with added uncertainties.

She had made many journeys to unknown places, but she knew this place, loved its languid stillness, the majesty of the peaks, some of which rose like pointed phalluses. These images heightened the vague cravings inside her that she never could quite identify. Someday her travels might resolve that..

Had she been challenged about what she was seeking, she might have compromised by saying ‘peace and tranquillity’. More honestly, to her close friend, Janice, her response was, “The perfect man.”

Janice had scolded her, “They don’t exist. God, you must know by now. Men will always disappoint you.”

Helen had to admit that, at thirty six years old, her six encounters had been somewhat unfulfilling.

Painfully deflowered at sixteen by the irksome Pete Bradley, followed, when she was eighteen, by Charlie Flynn, who was all wham-bam, with very little thanks. Three years later Jeffrey Tunney had come into her life, ten years her senior, and already a successful property developer when they married.

Eleven years of relatively comfortable marriage followed. Jeffrey was always gentle and considerate in bed, if never lifting her to any of the heights that books and hearsay suggested were her right. Over the years, business became his total obsession, and she received less and less attention. A sudden heart attack took him from her and left her saddened, but with a comfortable inheritance to sustain her for the rest of her life.

The three men since that time were best forgotten. Conrad Bascombe, she quickly labelled Conrad Fastcum’. Sometimes it happened before he’d even entered her, splashing his cream into her thick tawny bush, or sending it shooting in long white strands across her belly. Next came Jason, who turned out to be bisexual, with little real interest in physical contact. Finally, just over a year ago, there had been Archie, who was only interested in her giving him oral gratification, which was a privilege she would have preferred to bestow from feelings she had, not as a sign of male superiority.

“You certainly know how to pick them,” Janice had affirmed. “Stop seeking that someone special.” Although admitting the partial truth in what her friend said, Helen held on to the belief that somewhere there was that ‘someone’. Someone who would elevate her, make her feel exalted and fulfilled. Every time a door opened, every party she attended, every time she entered a cafe or theatre. That could have been the moment they met.

Several men were in her carriage as the train trailed upwards. Some were with family, one or two just looked dull, a few were too portly, or too elderly. None triggered the fervour she knew she would feel when it was ‘the someone’.

She had vowed there would be no more of the desperate clutching at straws she had indulged in since Jeffrey’s passing. Even if that meant a sense of despondency at the end of each venture.

Coming out of the station into the Spring sunlight that was melting the snow from the mountains, Helen took a taxi to the small hotel where she had stayed before. A two storey, glass fronted building, with friendly staff, excellent food, and a foyer and upper landing that gave a panoramic view of green hills sweeping up to towering snow capped peaks.

After unpacking and changing into blouse and slacks with a jersey over her shoulder, she set out for an afternoon walk.

Taking the lower trails, she relished the caressing of the clear air, the aroma of pine, the sheer freedom and silence, after the raucous life of cities.

After an hour and a half she returned to her room, showered, and changed into a simple dress, which she knew, accentuated her figure. Refreshed, and taking her book with her, she went to sit in the foyer to await the evening meal.

Sitting in that cosy atmosphere she didn’t bother with the book. There were enough people passing to hold her interest. Families, a couple hand in hand, two youthful men who might have been straight out of university, nothing to excite her.

After about twenty minutes she noticed the tall figure standing with his back to her, apparently absorbed in the classic view. Even as she watched he turned and their eyes locked for the briefest of moments, yet time enough for her to absorb the intensity of flinty eyes, bold and authoritative As heat suffused her skin, and he moved away, he gave her an easy, innocent smile, that aroused feelings she could not clarify. Made uneasy, she looked away.

After a moment she allowed herself to look across the foyer. He was standing at the foot of the staircase, near where a small piano stood. He was in close conversation with a smart young woman, who wore a peach blouse, with a beige skirt. Helen felt an unexpected aggravation.

Her meal over, she passed through the bar lounge of anadolu yakası escort the hotel and was surprised to see the young woman being given the avid attention of the two young university types. Why should that give her a sense of satisfaction?

The next morning she was coming back down from a pleasant walk when the tall man appeared, walking up the trail alone, heading for the peak behind the hotel. He walked briskly, giving her a gentle smile and a firm, “Good morning”, as he passed. He had taken off his shirt to catch more of the sun on an already golden torso that had the magnificence of a toned athlete. There was a youthful lightness in his face but his hair was greying at the temples.

But it was the eyes again that bored into her, a penetration that churned something inside her. She could have been almost angered by the boldness of his glance, but the easiness of his smile dissolved any antipathy she may have felt. How old would he be? Early forties, she guessed. Could this be her time? Fearing disappointment, she forcefully pushed him out of her mind.

After a light lunch she decided to lie down for a short rest, and was surprised when she woke up over an hour later. Believing that she would be doing no more walking, she showered, and donned a light flowered dress.

Coming out of her room, feeling rather lethargic, she heard the piano being played in the foyer. That was unusual. She had never heard it played, but recognised the theme from ‘The Godfather’ but given a slight Latin beat.

The music lifted her mood and she felt an urge to dance. Stopping on the upper landing, and admiring the stunning view, she found herself being wound up like a music box lady. No one was watching, so she swayed and whirled, not stopping even when the playing stopped suddenly.

“Ah, there are real people in this hotel.” The deep brown voice startled her, and was followed by a warm laugh.

She whirled round, her face blazing warm, to see the tall stranger two steps down, leaning lightly against the banister. “Don’t let me stop your performance,” he went on. He was dressed informally in shirt and trousers, and his eyes drilled into her, increasing her uncertainty. It was like being eyed by a hungry tiger.

“The piano has stopped,” she said flatly.

“I was fascinated seeing your feet twirling from down there. So I left it to see who could be so rhythmic.”

“It was you playing?”

He shrugged modestly and said, “This place is dead. Would you care to walk?”

Still uncertain about the suddenness of this chance, she gestured at her dress, “I’m not —“

“You look fine. We’ll stick to the lower paths. And the sun is shining a welcome to you.” The flint eyes regarded her quizzically as he added with a gentle smile, “I’m harmless.”

Helen wasn’t sure, given the pounding rising inside her, that she wanted him to be harmless. The trembling excitement she was feeling deep inside told her that she could be on the verge of what she had been craving.

She followed him down the stairs, and felt herself kissed by the rays of the sun, yet soothed by that a gentle mountain breeze.

“You always turn back early from your walks,” he observed casually. “Perhaps you should be more audacious, and take time to adore your surroundings.”

“I do adore nature, and travel,” she replied without rancour.

“Is it your work?”

“Nothing fixed. I write occasional articles for a magazine.”

“Another writer. How boring.” And he laughed. His eyes remained on her the whole time they talked. A core burned inside her like the heart of a volcano.

“You write—–fiction?”

“No, mostly natural stuff—oceans, rivers, grasslands. But right now I’m doing a book on mountains. I’ve just come from the Rockies—now the Alps”

“Mountains fascinate you?”

“Mountains are forever. Grasslands can be built on or cultivated—changed anyway. Rivers can be dammed or diverted. Only the sea rivals the longevity of the mountains.”

“Mountains can be climbed.”

His grey tinted head shook, “Headlines tell you that so-and-so conquered Everest. There was no conquest. The mountain permitted him access. The mountain removed obstructions. Good climbers watch for its signs—the dropping of the mists, the lowering of the winds.” His eyes regarded her more deeply, “Like the way a man will watch a woman for such signs—the dropping of a robe, the heaviness of a sigh—“

“I’ve always thought of mountains as masculine,” Helen said, and surprising herself at her bravado, she indicated two of the narrower phallic peaks, capped suggestively with snow.

“White haired old men,” he said, but she could see the twinkle in his eyes, that told her he knew very well the allusion she was making.

They had stopped walking, and faced each other. Helen was sure that this man, with his probing eyes could read the very troubled thoughts that were invading her. She stood rooted to the spot, a playful ataşehir escort breeze flicked through her hair, and lifted her skirt as though she wore fifty petticoats underneath. What was she expecting from this encounter? What did she want? The turmoil inside her was her strongest hint. She felt his strength could keep her rooted there for eternity.

Yet they walked on for an hour and a half, during which she discovered that the young lady in the peach blouse was his secretary. “Bit of a fun girl, but efficient.”

Eventually they flopped down side by side on a grassy knoll. His closeness did not bother her in the way she might have expected. Their eyes locked, and he smiled again, “You know what you are?” he asked.

Why was her breath quickening? “What am I?”

He moved imperceptibly closer,” You’re the woman who is never there. The most haunting women are those who can’t be found in a crowded café, who are lost in a party crowd. Never there–needing to be hunted out.”

“Have you been hunting?” Did he see her as haunting? How could his thoughts be so close to her own.

“No—I don’t hunt—-I wait—knowing, hoping she will appear.”

“I think I understand the feeling,” she said quietly. And did.

He sat up and looked at his watch, “Dinner is going to be over by the time we get back”

They started walking. Neither spoke for a while. Helen was locked in a myriad of conflicting emotions, promoted by physical sensations. Heated skin, stirrings in her lower abdomen demanded frequent glances at the tall, athletic man striding beside her.

Halfway back, he asked quietly, “When we get back would you have dinner with me in my room?”

Helen did not answer. Just walked on, heart thudding. The smile on her face would tell him.

Back in the hotel foyer, she watched as he strode to the reception desk, and gave his order. His decisive actions in small acts made her wonder would he be so determined with his greater desires.

She watched his every movement. A feeling of exaltation was rising inside her, heading to a pinnacle that could barely express her needs. Could she abandon herself to a stranger? She didn’t even know his name.

When he returned to tell her that the meal would be delivered to his room in about forty five minutes, his eyes on her were like a penetration.

On the way up the stairs she was trembling. Should this be happening? A first meeting and into bed? That only happened in fiction, didn’t it? Everything about this encounter had been disturbing, unreal, yet exhilarating.

Inside his room with its ornately carved bed, she moved towards the balcony. The view from here was breathtaking. Few foothills, only towering peaks that loomed in towards them.

He followed her and she expected him to become possessive. What happened surprised her.

This man whose air of authority had so attracted her, suddenly seemed unsure, almost uneasy. He gave her his disarming smile, but there was a tinge of nervousness in his eyes as he said, “I must tell you that this is not my normal way. Meet and straight to the bedroom.”

She needed him to know, “It’s not my experience either.”

He went on, his voice low, his words enthralling her, “No woman has so imbedded herself in my psyche. A woman I could love. I have something you must know.”

Helen felt that a ball of lead was ready to fall inside her. What was he about to tell her? Was there a wife? Was this why he seemed so uncertain? They were standing so close she had the sense of sparks transferring between them.

He bit his lip before saying, “I move on tomorrow. The Pyrenees. And then it’s the Andes next week. I feel guilty about this. I’ve almost forced you here. I need to know that you still want to be here.”

Mixed emotions were quickly replaced by a sense of being immensely moved by his honesty, his resulting timidity, and his tenderness. She was completely engulfed by his manner. And it came to that moment when it was she who moved into him and offered her mouth.

When he kissed her, his lips were warm. She felt his teeth, then quickly, his tongue. His hands were on her breasts and the tumult started within her, intense, full of wanton desire. His kisses moved to her neck and down her throat, where her blood pumped wildly. She swayed with the need to be taken, invaded, penetrated.

As they kissed and tongues entwined, he undressed her. Clothes fell at her feet while her spirits soared above her. Still kissing her neck, her hair, her throat he lifted her easily, and carried her to the bed.

His touch was indefinable, sometimes light and melting, other times fierce, the caress of a wild animal. His hands spread possessively over each part of her body; breasts, belly, labia and buttocks.

Lying there, her eyes closed, it seemed like he had twenty hands, stroking, adoring, fingers exploring her every part. And many mouths that travelled everywhere, nibbling, sucking, licking. His teeth, wolflike, ümraniye escort seemed to sink into her fleshier parts. She wanted it. Wanted to be devoured. Her body trembled as she found that, somehow, he was naked and his erect penis pressed against her thigh.

As she began to reach for it he moved completely over her, on top of her, welded together from mouth to toe. Shivers ran through her body. He whispered lovely ideas into her ear as he raised her legs and entered her.

Her whole body was a secret passage and this enormous, immense, hot intruder was so welcome.

Rolling, he had them lying side by side, huge inside her, but very still. Not moving. Simply savouring their intimacy.

Enjoying this joining of their bodies, Helen had a sudden impulse, a devilish extension of it being her special time, her time for choices, for commitments, and she drew back so that his penis slipped from her. Sitting up she looked down, hair over her face, eyes misted with passion. He lay on his back. She moved down until her lips touched his erect moist penis, catching the aroma of herself. Kissing all around it made him gasp, and his penis flickered.

Sitting back she saw his eyes open and look at her, a different look, a pleading look and she felt his hand on the back of her head, pressing. Obediently, yet eagerly she lowered her mouth to engulf his penis, her tongue agitated over it, tasting her own juices.

As she slid her mouth up and down, occasionally raking with her teeth, he grunted, and a faint salty taste overlaid her own tartness. She raised her head, and looked down at him. “Over?” she asked.

A weak smile crossed his lips as he shook his head, ” Just a prelude.”

Given the demands flaring inside her, the volcano she’d felt earlier demanding to erupt, she could not believe how they could now lie, just touching, feeling each other with a tenderness that belied the intensity that raged inside both of them.

She touched him everywhere. He was all muscle and erectile tissue. She raised her body to rub against him, lifting her pubes to his mouth, allowing his tongue to probe her most sensitive parts only briefly, knowing it could drive her way over the edge.

As she moved back, his mouth suckled and licked at her breast, teeth threatening to consume, yet delighting her.

His fingers plunged deep into the honey that seemed to be oozing from her vagina, which she felt was opening like a mouth desperate for food. Then his penis was there, and she was desperate for it, hungry to claim its fire.

He moved her so that she lay on him, her legs straddling his, and as he entered her she knew that this way he could see himself disappearing inside her. For herself, she could look away from his face and see the action she had craved, his entrance into her so willing body.

Their bodies undulated together seeking the ultimate. Helen felt him filling her but she did not quicken her movements.

Another change and she was lying on her back, her legs spread and raised. Now he was able to plunge more deeply into her, with greater force, reaching her very womb, she was sure. Her head shook from side to side at the friction of his massive penis, a tree trunk of an implement scouring the walls of her vagina.

So intense was the feeling that she felt that her very womb was throwing out tiny hands to savour him, to draw him further, and her whole body was latched into the frantic motion. This was what she had craved for so long. This intensity, this fire. With each stroke of his penis she was finding new layers of extreme pleasure to which she was happy to respond. It had never happened this way.

Their mouths meshed together, tongues absorbing the pleasures that were emanating from below, and moving in a similar rhythm. Helen’s body, her very soul, now clamoured for the ultimate. She moved quicker, demanding a climax, and he recognised this and his tempo increased.

The climax was spreading between them, between their mouths and their sexual fusion. Helen would never be able to explain that moment as the movements launched them away somewhere beyond sensibility, yet the fires were intensely locked inside them, spreading, flaring, searching every nerve end, until the pleasure had her crying out in what was half sob, half laughter.

They lay for some time, licking at each others perspiration, chuckling, touching like innocent children.

After the meal, they did it all again and again, confident, like they had been together for years. And she knew she had found her ‘someone.’

The next day she saw him with his suitcase. Despair rocked her newly found heart. Their eyes met and he came to her, apologetically. Then he handed her his card, ” My flat is in Paris. But I’m hardly ever there.”

Without looking at the card she hastily found paper and pen at the desk and scribbled her name, address and telephone number. She handed it to him.

He looked, “Helen.” he said, and his smile bathed her.

She glanced at the card for the first time, ” Christopher,” she whispered.

“I like the way you say that.”

She saw him stop at the taxi door, fold her piece of paper and place it carefully in his wallet. He placed his wallet back in his inside pocket near to his heart, looked up at her as he tapped the spot. Then he was gone.

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