Soldier and the Florist
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Author’s Note: A gift for a dear friend of mine. I hope you all enjoy as well.
The Soldier and the Florist
With a glance to the clock hanging on the wall, Kat let out a heavy sigh. Only mid afternoon, and as usual the shop was dead. It was easy to enjoy the scents, the colours of the flowers that lined the shelves, the beautiful bouquets arranged carefully in the windows, but she was still bored. She doubted today they’d see anyone until after four, and she let out another sigh, glancing down at her lunch bag beneath the counter.
Mitch was in the back, somewhere, doing whatever he was up to. But that left Kat, bored, alone, but at least with a beautiful array of plants.
Letting out another sigh, she reached into her lunch bag and pulled free a juice box. Mitch wouldn’t be happy if she was drinking it near the register, but first he’d have to come up here to find her doing it.
With a final glance to the back door to see if Mitch was going to emerge, Kat punched the straw into the juicebox. She had just gotten the straw to her mouth when the little bell above the door chimed. The word shit had just ran across her mind when she glanced upwards, and found herself staring.
The woman that walked in was tall, with long black hair let loose and bouncing around her shoulders. There were a few streaks of gray that stood out in the cascade of dark tresses, but this woman made it work, no shame, no concealment. Clad in khaki cargo pants and a dark grey t-shirt that displayed amazingly toned arms covered in tattoos, Kat could not stop staring.
The woman’s eyes glanced about the store for a moment, settling on Kat, still with a straw in her mouth. The florist fell her cheeks burning slightly as their eyes met, but she could not convince herself to put the juice box down. Instead she waved. The corner of the woman’s lips tugged upwards slightly in amusement as she returned the wave.
The woman turned to the shelves then, scanning potted flowers, and some of the bouquets kept on the top shelf. Her pants were hugging her hips, and the t-shirt didn’t hide the beautiful swell of her bust. Kat swore at herself internally as she began to slowly drink. What was happening here? She hardly ever let herself go ga-ga for girls.
Then the woman reached upwards, the heels of her runners didn’t even lift off the floor, but as her arms reached for one of the bouquets, the hem of her shirt rose. A band of pale skin revealed, as well as the ridged edge of a single perfect abdominal muscle.
Juice flooded Kat’s mouth as her cheeks burned brighter, her eyes widening. She only just managed not to spew it all over the counter and register, but still stood upright and staring as the woman pulled the plastic bound flowers down. She looked them over, before nodding to herself.
Looking down briefly, Kat noticed her fist clenched around the juice box, crumpling it into a narrow strip of cardboard. She hurriedly pulled the straw from her mouth and dropped the empty thing into the recycle bin beneath the counter. She looked up again, still feeling that burning in her cheeks, as she examined the bundle of flowers. Lot of white and red in that bundle. Roses, and carnations, and orchids.
Focusing now on the flowers, trying not to stare any longer at the woman, trying to ignore the burning in her face and the heat in her loins.
“Hey,” the woman said, pulling Kat’s attention back upwards, to her face. Sharp, a little hard, with a nasty looking scar across her left cheek. Her eyes, a bright green colour, were locked directly onto Kat’s, and she felt a slight weakness in her knees.
“Hi. Sorry about before,” Kat stumbled as the woman laid the flowers upon the counter.
“Everyone gets thirsty. Don’t worry,” she said with that slight pull at the corner of her lip.
“So uh, flowers for someone special?” Kat asked, a part of her mind just repeating ‘please say no’ again and again.
“No, for a funeral actually, back home,” the woman said.
“Oh my God, I’m so sorry,” Kat said, her mind instantly letting out a single ‘Well, fuck’.
“Oh. It’s alright. I didn’t actually know them. More of, they belonged to the same organization and I’m responsible for getting it done,” she said, her face passive as she spoke. Kat’s mind was swirling, panicking.
“So a company gig,” she said, looking back to the flowers now.
“Close, but more of a mess,” the woman said, that tugging smile back.
“I see, might I make some suggestions?” Kat asked, trying to pull herself away from the lurid thoughts already swirling through her mind. What would those lips taste like, for instance.
The woman cocked a single thin eyebrow, arching it high. Her tugging smile showed amusement as she regarded Kat. The look though, did not help the wanton desires swirling through Kat’s imagination.
“Such as?” the woman asked.
At this Kat took a breath. She was used to giving advice, used to helping customers get what they actually wanted, and wanted to convey. antalya escort But, her own damn libido was making this more awkward than it should have been.
“I can make a new bouquet, at the same price as this one, but I think it will be more fitting for what you want to say,” Kat said, pulling the woman’s selected bundle of flowers from the counter. She turned then to place it on the shelf behind her, and as soon as she did she was intensely aware of her yoga pants. She blushed, and turned back, to see the woman’s eyes sliding upwards.
That is not helping. At all.
The thought spilled through Kat’s mind, a little elation at being observed, at being checked out. The woman didn’t say anything, but her lips were still held in that little smile that was piercing into Kat’s lust.
“Just, uh… give me a minute,” Kat managed, blushing again, and the woman just nodded. Kat bit her lip a moment, then hurried about the store, flushed and embarrassed and almost panicking. Never mind turned on as she gathered small bunches of flowers from every point.
When she returned she started to carefully slide them into their clear plastic bundle. As she worked, she watched everything she did, aware of the woman’s eyes, but trying not to stare back. Letting out a small cough, she began to explain the various flowers she was putting into the bouquet.
“So these are calla lilies, meant to represent that the soul has achieved peace after their death. The yellow roses are for a close relationship and commitment, and for what you’re explaining, that commitment will be what you want. Uh, the white carnations are for strength and healing, for the family. And these few pink orchids are to add some variance in colour, but also a long lasting show of sympathy,” Kat said, carefully tying off the bouquet, purposely looking down.
“Thank you Kat, it’s perfect,” the woman said, and Kat’s head snapped up wondering how this stranger knew her name, before she remembered the metal tag pinned to her green apron. The woman was smiling again, and Kat blushed.
“You’re welcome… shall, shall I ring you up?” she asked, and the woman nodded, fishing into her pants for a wallet.
“Please,” the woman said, pulling out a small metal card holder. Kat glanced down at it as she punched in the price and told the woman, curiosity pulling her eyes to some of the cards as the woman flicked through them. The health card and driver’s liscence looked like Ontario, but she wasn’t sure what the white ID with the maple leaf in the Corner and Canada written on a grey bar was. It was gone before she could study the writing more, and a debit card was produced.
“Jackie, by the way,” the woman said, sliding her card into the chip reader.
Kat blinked, staring at a black and gray strand of hair hanging in front of the woman’s face as she punched in her pin.
“Excuse me?” Kat asked.
“My name. It’s Jackie,” she said, pulling her card free, looking back up to Kat, who was blushing furiously, and struggling to hold in a whimper. Instead she nodded, and smiled, something slightly forced.
“Well, I hope I was helpful,” Kat said as the woman took up her bundle of flowers and moved towards the door.
“Very. Have a good day,” she said, and gave a wink before slipping out the door.
Kat stared at it for a long moment, hands on the counter, wishing she would come back in. When Jackie didn’t come back, Kat sighed.
“You had nice hands, just come back and choke me,” she said, pushing off the counter.
“Inappropriate customer relations,” Mitch’s amused voice said.
“Gah! Fuck! How long have you been standing there?” Kat said, spinning around with wide eyes.
“Long enough to see you bi-panic. She was hot,” Mitch said, smirking as he watched Kat’s blush spread across her features.
“I was not… okay I was bi-panicing. But I’m not going to fuck a customer in here,” Kat said, stopping herself from stomping her foot as she stared Mitch down.
“I’m not sure you’d be fucking her, and not the other way around,” he said, and Kat frowned as she tried to follow his sentence.
“That is not helping.”
Mitch laughed, turning around and slipping into the back room again.
With a heavy sigh Kat leaned forward with her elbow on the counter, resting her chin in her palm. She glanced at the clock, disparaging to see it was just the mid afternoon. As much fun as she’d had the night before, fingers slipping between her thighs, this new day had been another boring one. And Mitch had squirreled himself in the back. Again.
She started humming to herself, one of her favourite Kpop songs. As she started to bob her head to the sounds she imagined, the front door opened with the ring of the bell, and poor Jimin vanished almost immediately.
Standing straight up, Kat watched as Jackie strode back in. Her khaki pants were the same, but today she was sporting a dark purple tank top, and Kat’s eyes couldn’t help but pick up the peaking black straps of her bra. Or the slight shadow of the hint of cleavage.
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This time Jackie didn’t bother searching the store, she moved to the front desk, and Kat couldn’t help but notice the black liner around her eyes, or the dark shading of her eyelids. She slowly blinked.
“Hi, welcome back. How can I help?” she suddenly wished she’d been sucking on a juice box this time.
“Just looking for a few flowers. Thought you might be able to help,” she said, pausing at the counter. She looked almost pleadingly at Kat, and the florist’s libido almost screamed out ‘help her you bitch’.
“Yeah. That is what we do here. What you looking for?” she asked.
“Well. There’s a girl. I want to tell her she’s pretty with some flowers. And, use them to help me make a move,” Jackie said, and Kat felt herself shrivelling inside. She pasted on a smile, and went looking.
Part of her was tempted to find something that gave the exact opposite of what Jackie wanted, but in the end, she couldn’t do it. Not to a woman that truthfully didn’t owe her anything. Still, she wasn’t happy about it. So she went and collected a few and brought them back to the counter.
“You okay?” Jackie asked, and Kat’s eyes flicked to her own, savouring the way she’d done her eye makeup. Damnit, why’d she have to go full panic on this one?
“Just a long night, don’t worry. But these, are White Dittany’s. They represent love, but more importantly for you, passion. And are said to be an aphrodisiac. Might not tell her she’s beautiful, but… certainly help make a move,” Kat said, putting on a fake smile.
“Good. I’ll take em,” Jackie said, pulling out that card holder again. This time Kat got a better look at the white ID, saw the dress uniform in the photo. Jackie was a soldier. She almost commented while they processed the transaction, but held her tongue.
“Thanks again. You’re a huge help,” Jackie said as she picked up the flowers, and Kat nodded.
“Hope she likes them,” she said, and Jackie held out the flowers to her. Kat blinked.
“These are for you,” Jackie said. Slowly Kat reached out and took the small little bundle and held them in her hands, staring at them for a few moments.
“I… should have seen this coming,” Kat said, still looking at the flowers. Flowers she’d picked out. Flowers she’d just said were good for a hook up. Her eyes widened again.
“Maybe. Little bit of cheese goes well with wine and sex,” Jackie said, and Kat almost felt the blush explode across her face as she clutched the flowers closer and look up at Jackie, who was now leaning against the counter. Bent at the waist, making her pants hug her hips tighter, deepening the view of her cleavage.
“You have pretty hands,” Kat almost just blurted out the rest of the words, and turned ever more red.
“Thank you. You have very pretty eyes,” Jackie shot back, before standing. She leaned in over the counter until Kat could smell the watermelon shampoo in her hair, and the almost pine scented body wash of her skin.
“So. Does she like them?” Jackie asked, and Kat almost blurted out an undignified ‘hunh’. Almost.
“Yes. Yes I do,” she managed, nodding her head.
“Good. So where’s a good place to go for a date around here?”
“Uh… Grand Sushi,” Kat said with a nod. She thought she noticed something pass across the other woman’s face, but the press of lips to her cheek soon flushed that thought away.
“Good. See you at eight. I’ll make the reservation, ask for me,” Jackie said, and turned towards the door.
“Eight works,” Kat managed to get out, receiving a thumbs up, and a wiggle of hips, before the woman was out the door. She stood there staring for a moment.
“Maybe I should have said you could fuck in the back room. I could eat the sexual tension here,” Mitch said.
“God Damnit,” Kat shouted, spinning around again, only to hear Mitch’s laugh vanishing again into the back room.
Showing up at the sushi restaurant, Kat sat in her car a few moments staring at the door, drumming her fingers along the steering wheel. Glancing down at the clock she, the white digital numbers told her it was quarter to eight. So she went back to drumming her fingers on the wheel, before pressing her forehead against it.
“What am I doing?” she mumbled to herself, before her libido told her that she was going to get laid. With a woman that had managed to press so many buttons just by walking into the damn store.
Another sigh, she pulled down the sun visor and opened the mirror to check her makeup and hair. Again. Stepping out of the car, she started walking towards the restaurant. She stopped just outside the door and wiped her palms across the thighs of her black jeans. Finally she stepped inside.
A young Japanese woman smiled at her, welcoming her to the restaurant with a trained and friendly customer service voice. Kat almost nodded in respect.
“Here to meet someone. Jackie,” Kat said, and the host smiled her perfectly trained and practiced side escort smile, and looked down at some list she had at her podium.
“Of course, just this way,” the host said, turning to walk deeper into the place. Kat followed, feeling her stomach doing enough flips and turns she wasn’t sure she’d be able to eat. Even if the place smelled amazing.
Then she saw her, sitting in a booth, one finger resting beneath her lower lip, the other hand holding the menu as she studied it. Feeling her heart skip a beat, Kat swallowed as she followed the hostess closer and closer. Her mind shut out the buzz of conversation, as her vision narrowed on Jackie.
Who looked up just then, some hair bouncing off her shoulder and over her chest. Kat felt her own eyes dipping down in the shadow of her cleavage, offered by the violet blouse she wore, the sleeves neatly rolled up to her elbows. She smiled, her lips painted a dark plum, and rose upwards. She seemed taller.
Kat’s eyes slithered downwards, over leather pants that clung enticingly to her hips, and the boots she wore sporting three inch heels.
“That’s just not fair,” Kat whispered, though it almost came out a whimper.
“Enjoy your evening, a server will be with you shortly,” the hostess said, and almost seemed to scurry away.
Jackie pulled Kat into a tight hug before she could react, and she felt the burning in her cheeks as lips pressed against them. When Jackie pulled away she gestured towards the seat on the other side of the booth.
“You look stunning,” Jackie said as both women sat themselves, now looking at the other from across the table.
Reaching out, Kat picked up the menu, but couldn’t even bring her eyes to it, as she watched Jackie instead. Watched Jackie watching her, chin resting on her knuckles. The eyeliner was just a bit bolder, the eyeshadow just a bit darker, and the green of her eyes was intense.
“On the off chance you didn’t know, you are a gorgeous creature,” Jackie said, only then dropping her hand to the laminated menu before her while Kat’s cheeks burned.
“How are you doing this to me?” Kat said, causing Jackie’s eyes to flick upwards to regard her. That little tugging smile of hers returning.
“Oh you know what, you succubus,” Kat said, and clamped a hand over her mouth. She really didn’t want to see a mirror right now, she must look like a tomato.
Luckily Jackie laughed, and gave a small wink.
“Careful, might take your soul tonight,” she said, and the implication slithered through Kat’s imagination like a serpent, and she found herself pressing her thighs together. This damn woman was playing her like a fine tuned guitar.
And she was loving it.
“Well. At least it’d be a pleasant end,” Kat managed before forcing her eyes down towards the menu, hearing the soft chuckle from Jackie’s lips. She scanned over the food, even though she already knew what she wanted.
It did not take long for a server to come by asking for drinks. Jackie asked for just water, and Kat was tempted to get something strong, but knew that as soon as she did she would seal exactly how this night was going to end.
Not that she didn’t want it to end that way but, this woman was still a stranger. This woman was hot, alluring, and there were gorgeous tattoos on her forearms, and did she just order chicken?
Kat blinked as she snapped back to the world, Jackie’s order registering in her mind. She’d taken her to a sushi place, and ordered chicken. The server smiled and turned to Kat, pen and notepad in hand.
“Um. I’ll take the number 3 platter please,” she said and the server wrote it down, nodding before slipping away.
“Chicken?” Kat said once the server was walking away. Jackie shrugged, her mouth pushing to the side slightly.
“I don’t like sushi,” she admitted and a bolt of panic flooded through Kat. A first date, and they’d gone to a place for food she hates.
“I’m so sorry. I didn’t think to ask,” Kat said her eyes wide, and Jackie just laughed, reached across the table and took one of Kat’s hands. She had to lean forward slightly, deepening Kat’s view down her shirt, enough to clearly make out the black lace of her bra cupping her breasts.
Slowly, she traced her fingertip across the back of Kat’s knuckles, and downwards, following the edges of the rose petals inked atop her forearm, ghosting just over them.
“It’s okay. You can find something to eat pretty much anywhere. Besides, I wanted to make you happy,” Jackie said, and Kat felt herself calming, though her heart rate wasn’t slowing. The gentle touch to her hand was getting her excited to see how the night would play out.
“So. Want to make me happy to get into my pants?” Kat said, feeling a little victory over this woman who was playing her like a fiddle when she raised an eyebrow.
“Oh. I’ve seen the way you’ve looked at me. That was happening either way. No, I just wanted to have a good time with sex, not get hate fucked on the first meeting.”
Kat was happy she wasn’t drinking when those words left Jackie’s mouth. Her cheeks she was sure were beet red. The woman was wearing a passive expression, and it just bled confidence to Kat’s eyes. She found herself crossing her legs, staring at those boldly lined green eyes, while Jackie toyed with her hand.
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