This story is written strictly for the free enjoyment of fans of the "Beauty and the Beast" television series. No copyright infringement is intended.)

The Rose Buffet


Our drink shall be prepared gold and amber;
Which we will take, until my roof whirl around
With the vertigo: and my dwarf shall dance.

- Ben Johnson

Catherine feasted her eyes on the man stretched out beside her, basking in the morning sun coming in the skylight Ė and purring. She could feel the vibration in the mattress. An unexpected advantage of a rattan frame. It also seemed to transmit the shake of the underground trains and occasionally heavy trucks going by on the street outside the brownstone. She loved the sensation. But Vincentís was unique, of course. It seemed to seep into her bones, like an electric massager.

He was a sight to see. One pane of the skylight had a pair of stained glass roses Ė a red and a white, of course. They were colouring that part of his anatomy she considered entirely hers. Did he know this? She suspected he did.

Vincent was a gourmetís delight, she decided. Every part of him was fascinating, loveable. He was a sensual buffet. In combination, he was a meal that rivaled anything anyone could imagine. She could not conceive of beginning a day without him.

She loved the tastes, smells and feel of him. He was gentle, as if a big stuffed toy had come to life. He was cuddly and warm, but firm in all the right places. He was tactile, beautifully so, and loved to be touched, stroked, kissed, massaged, and sucked. He responded in ways she had never thought possible in anyone. He shook with delight, quivered with passion - and his skin heated furnace-like. He made her skin tingle, her head roar - and lit a fire in her core that seemed to consume her. And she loved him with total abandon, as he did her.

She was feeling that warmth building again, and watched as his manhood awakened to what he sensed through their bond. The roses seemed to be growing as she watched.

It was very tempting, but no, she decided that today she wanted to explore him as a gourmand.

She moved to lay on her side against him. His purr buzzed against her and sent a shiver down her length. His purr deepened and he turned to look at her.

"I can sense mischief," he whispered. "What are you thinking."

"Iím thinking what a gourmetís delight you are. And Iím thinking I want to explore you in great detail."

"Oh, is that all? Be my guest," he rasped, the tension in his voice belying the casual words.

She was not fooled, but chose not to say so. Instead she spent a few moments trying to decide where to start. Top to bottom? But then she would have to bypass the middle to continue. She knew herself incapable of that. Begin at the top, switch to the bottom and then work upwards so she could give the delightful main dish the attention it deserved? That seemed awkward. Then she had a brainstorm. Why not just sample choice dishes at random until she could no longer ignore the pull of the main course? Yes, that made sense. Those she missed could be sampled another time.

She knew her capacity for indulgence was not infinite. She would have to sample carefully or she would fill to bursting and get distracted. Nothing too rich at first. She must be discriminating.

There was even the possibility that the piece de resistance might not await her pleasure. She would have to pace herself very carefully and monitor the state of the centrepiece. Yes, that should work. Catherine smiled.

Vincent saw that smile and knew it meant she was going to test his staying power severely. He wondered how he could prevent himself from combusting. Perhaps if he recited the times tables. On the other hand, he didnít want to be so distracted that heíd miss something Ė he just didnít want to "misfire". Well, nothing said he couldnít engage in some diversions of his own.

Catherine was already enjoying the feel of his hips against her thigh and decided to begin her repast with something close to hand. Her own hands, she decided, should stay quiet for now.

Vincent had his arms angled beside his head, so she nuzzled under his arm. His hair was fairly short and very fine there, but abundant. It was like burrowing into an angora sweater Ė soft and sweet. There was the slight scent of herbal soap and a slight dampness. He was not as unaffected as he pretended. She nosed around this concave platter, exploring it thoroughly.

Vincent decided to hold his retribution in reserve, until he could no longer resist. He closed his eyes as Catherine began her exploration of his right armpit. As she pushed her nose around, she seemed to leave a trail of heat behind. If that werenít enough, her breasts, their nipples hard, were pressed against his ribs. Unfair, he moaned to himself.

Vincent thought furiously. Maybe the times tables were a good idea after all. 1 times 1 is 1, 1 times 2 is 2, 1 times 3 is 3. Or should he have started with 0 times 1?

Catherine must have sensed his sudden distraction, because she suddenly sucked hard and he lost his train of thought completely. He groaned. Maybe he would have to take remedial action. He considered and opened an eye to look down the length of her body. Well, that round hip rising above his waist looked very inviting. He moved his other arm across himself and began to stroke it. He felt a shudder and smiled to himself. Ha! She was not so engaged that she couldnít be distracted. He knew she had caught that minor frisson of triumph.

Round one, Catherine decided, had gone to Vincent. He had managed to counter her quite effectively. The feel of his warm hand on her hip almost made her want to concede defeat - but she had barely started. She was made of stronger stuff and had to get a grip on herself. She considered her next move. Well, perhaps it was time to take aim at something a little more sensitive.

She walked her lips across his ribs to a nipple hiding in his dense chest fur and began a soft teasing. She put her arm across his chest and let it rest there. She was delighted when the nipple began to harden and rise a little. Then she began a slow massage around it, every so often stopping to give the nipple a lick and then blowing on it. She felt him shiver under her. Aha, he was not so sanguine anymore!

Vincentís nipples were one of his most sensitive areas - and Catherine knew it. He put his head back and let himself drown in the sensation of her lips on it. Then when she licked it and then blew on it, he couldnít prevent a shiver down his length. He felt her satisfaction through the bond.

Meanwhile, her own nipples were pressed into his chest and her arm lay across it. Again, the unfairness of it assaulted him even as he gloried in the sensation. His purr became a bit erratic and did not seem to affect her much. He moved his hand to slide down a little to her hip and then up to her ribs, but knew that would not be enough to distract her either. He couldnít reach her breasts. She began to suck his nipple hard Ė and he became disconnected again. Ripples of arousal flowed down to his groin. His manhood was now almost at attention. He groaned.

Well, she had won that round, Catherine thought. She peeked under her arm and saw the clear evidence of her success. And she had heard him groan. His mouth was open, exposing his canines, and his breath was rasping. Yes, his purr had changed to something almost spastic and his chest was tensing a little under her. But he was not yet fully aroused.

However, his warm hand on her ribs was a distraction she would have to overcome for her next buffet dish. How many more could she handle?

She decided it was time to enjoy her second favourite repast - Vincentís face. She could only reach it when they were in bed, and she thought of it now as a platter of petit-fours. So many different flavours and textures, all delightful.

She moved herself so she was laying on Vincentís chest, as high as she could get, her legs straddling him so they would not touch what would surely distract her. She put her hands to work cupping his ears and stroking them, felt him shiver, and smiled. Then she began her exploration.

His eyebrows were of coarser hair and swooped from his unique nose like the wings of a seagull. She nuzzled them lightly and then ran her nose along each arc in turn, then against the growth. Then she smoothed them straight with her tongue. When she paused, Vincentís eyes opened and looked in hers. They were dark with passion, but there was a glint in them. She knew she was in for trouble. He closed them again and she moved onto the next delight, closing her eyes and let her lips explore.

She slid her lips over his cheeks, loving the softness of the skin under his eyes, his high cheekbones. His skin was warm from the sun. She found the rise where his facial hair began and followed it up to where it joined his nose, then went over it to his other cheek. This fur was soft, like a babyís hairbrush, not unlike that in another very precious place, she thought, and felt herself heat up. Resolutely, she dragged her mind back to the treat under her lips.

Next had to be his nose. She moved her lips down its furry length, tasting it lightly with her tongue. When she got to tip she paused. The area around his nostrils was very smooth and moistly warm. She kissed it, then licked it slowly. Wonderful! Then there was his cleft, which had a name Ė what was it called? It popped into her mind. Philtrum. She ran her tongue down it, nuzzled the fur on either side of the cleft. It was lovely and soft. She felt him tense under her, knew that this was one of his erogenous zones, decided to sample it a little longer and ran her tongue down it again.

Abruptly she was distracted from an unexpected quarter and had to pause. Something was tickling her crotch. Well, she knew what it was of course, and the folly of her position was made plain to her. He was now fully-extended, without a doubt. And eager.

Well, she wasnít quite ready to concede defeat yet. She moved her mouth to his and began to massage it. He responded with a passion that left them both gasping for air and their tongues reaching for each other. She felt as if she were drowning, felt Vincentís disconnect as well, as if they were sinking together. She reflected that her oh-so-clever move had resulted in a draw.

She gave herself up to sensation, left Vincentís ears to stroke what was worrying the hot moistness between her legs, reached a little further down to try and find his furry balls. But the position was too awkward. She sighed and felt his heat radiating through her.

Well, enough of hors díoevres. Time for the main course. She slid herself down until she was resting on that wonderful work of art. Her legs were inside his and now she could cup those finely-furred globes and did so, massaging them gently. She heard him gasp

She was just thinking that she had countered that well when she felt a long-nailed finger stroke her labia from behind. She groaned in arousal and gave up. She put her chin on his chest to look up him and found him regarding her with a love and passion that ran like fire along their bond in both directions.

Vincent then put his hands under her pelvis and lifted her slowly onto his column. They both sighed in absolute delight as he slid inside and swelled to fill her. He put his arms around her and hugged her close, moving his lips over her hair and finding an ear to nuzzle. He had succeeded in sidetracking her completely. She hugged his broad chest, strokes his ribs - and let herself sink into sensation.

Vincent put his hands on Catherineís hip bones and lifted her a little, then arched his own to meet her, lifted his knees to keep her from sliding down. He wrapped his legs around hers, then began a sinuous motion which made her arch her back and grasp his arms for support.

Catherine looked up and was captured by his half-closed azure eyes, which immediately locked on her own. His mouth was open slightly, his tongue half out in concentration. She had never seen him do that before and found the sight of his tongue quite erotic.

She felt her heat build up to sun-like intensity and suddenly they both exploded in passion, their orgasm soaring, carrying them on its warm waves to a far horizon Ė Xanadu perhaps, she thought.

Catherine let herself slump onto his chest and felt his legs clamp her close. His arms surrounded her and his purr reverberated with new energy along their length. She shuddered in a minor release and felt him pulse inside her in response.

That was definitely a draw. They were the perfect match. Together, they made a full meal, an elegant sufficiency. Nothing more was needed or wanted. It was perfect.

Her last thought was that this buffet had been all she had hoped for. But then this particular gourmet delight had never disappointed her. She felt Vincentís complete contentment.

Catherine drifted into a nap and felt Vincent do the same. The roses moved up her back unnoticed, their beauty no less for gracing a different buffet now.