Tuesday, October 11, 2016

The Teacher

“Why can’t we just travel and have fun?”

That question always lingered in the back of my head since the day he asked it. Because that’s what I knew was next in my life; all of the traveling that I wouldn’t have gotten to do otherwise. And there he was, a person beside me to make all of those experiences even more exciting.

My response was simple and confident, “We totally could.”

So when the day finally came when it was time to actually take a trip with him, low and behold, I was nervous again. That excitement and anxiousness around him hadn’t faded yet. And I didn’t want it to because when I become too comfortable, I become bored and I never wanted to be bored again.

This time it was my car. There wasn’t a carseat or dolls thrown around in the back. I didn’t have my little pal singing along or dancing with me as we drove to and from my house and my parents’, instead I was given the freedom to figure out what was happening between me and the unlikeliest of partners. A weekend completely alone with someone that intrigued me more than anyone else I had ever met. But I was over the mystery of it, he was here and now it was time to crack some codes.

He stole my keys and went to start the car. I grabbed some bottles of water out of the fridge, locked up the front and strolled out to the passenger seat. The trunk was packed. And he was messing with the stereo. I opened the car door and slid in as he turned up the volume. When I recognized the song, Sittin’ At a Bar by Rehab, I gave him a quick side glance.

“Lose the attitude, we haven’t even pulled out of the driveway yet,” he demanded.

“Whatever.”

“Okay baby, let’s go,” he said with his signature smirk as he turned out onto the road.

I gave him another funny look. He never used pet names. It was rare. He knew what I was thinking, “Don’t get all giddy now that I called you baby. Keep your panties on.”

“Oh yeah, I just cannot contain myself right now,” I replied.

He was grabbing my thigh again and he turned to look at me, “It’s easy to get drunk off my words Grace.”

I laughed obnoxiously, “Leave the metaphors to me.”

“I get an A for that one, it was good."

“Maybe you get an A for effort but that’s about it,” I snapped back.

He was glaring at me, stalled on my road, “This isn’t new age curriculum. You don’t get an A just for effort.”

I was too quick for him though, “You do when I’m the teacher.”

He laughed a bit and I felt his hand traveling farther up my leg, “Stop, you’re turning me on.”

“Everything turns you on. Now drive.”

***

He would stop at the most random spots. And buy the most random bits to remember the moment. A seashell wind chime that cost too much and served zero purpose, a copy of his favorite Stephen King novel from a gas station in the middle of nowhere because it had cover art he'd never seen before and postcards for me after recalling a time when I told him about my saved collection. I loved this part of him.

I didn't know exactly where we were going. He kept it all a secret. I didn't care. It was enough to just be with him and soak in what that was like. His terrible taste in music and food, for example. But I was learning to ache for his hands, because he always found a way to touch me. Even when he was being a smart ass or giving me a hard time, reassurance came with a hand on my hip or a squeeze  of my arm. He consciously suppressed his affection or romantic parts but they'd surface in ways he didn't realize like in the way he handled me or in the intense way he would talk.

Check-in at the hotel came and went and we were back in bed again with a flashback to that first night. My things were everywhere; clothes hanging out of the suitcase, lotion on the counter and my computer charging in the corner. His things were neat and tidy on the chair as if they'd been untouched. But that's kind of a metaphor for the two of us. I'm a bit disheveled at all times and he's precise ... crisp even.

"Get in." Another demand from him.

"Yes sir," I nodded as I started to climb under the sheets.

He laughed, "Correct answer."

"Oh shove off," I joked and turned away from him.

He rolled over. He was close because I could feel his breath on my neck and his hands sliding up my leg. He was laughing again.

"That's really not how this is going to work. And don't for a second pretend like you want it to be any way other than what we've been going towards."

Sometimes he would get a little stubborn. Sometimes he would come off as grouchy and cold, when I would even "for a second" harden up a bit. He needed it though, even when it was a joke or something lighthearted like this. He needed to make just as much effort as I was.

I started giggling this time and turned over to face him. And he was staring at me, like he was always staring at me in both real life and in my dreams. He would stare with intent and with focus and it would knock the breath out of me, just like it did in this moment.

"Stop," I said calmly, "stop trying to be a hard ass all of the time. Because there's not one second that will go by when I would pretend to not be in this or make you feel stupid for it."

He was holding onto my side, those hands I love were going back and forth between the curve of my waist and slope of my hip. And he continued to stare. And then he did something else he always did, he put his forehead to mine.

"This isn't a time to argue or whatever the hell we're always doing."

"Then what is it a time for," I asked.

"Ha," he laughed, "you're the teacher remember? You tell me."
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