by Catherine O. Virtue
Vincent came up behind her and slipped his arms
around her waist. Catherine smiled, then startled as his mouth
grazed her cheek, then pressed a scorching kiss against the column of
His laugh was a deep rumble in his chest, and she
could feel it as his arms pulled her back against him. He kissed
her neck again, his mouth moving deliberately over her skin while
“Vincent—not fair!” She put the last soapy
dish under the spray of the faucet and put it in the drainer, then
turned abruptly into his arms. His next kiss she met full-on, her
mouth opening under his, her wet hands sliding to cup his neck.
She felt gloriously unsteady, and anchoring herself to Vincent seemed
an imminently practical idea.
Vincent apparently agreed with this assessment, for
his hold on her grew from intimate to demanding, his warm hands sliding
to cup and hold what was his.
Catherine made a little moan against his mouth and
her body, which had been straining against his, suddenly
loosened. “Yes,” she whispered. “Please…yes.”
There had been a time when this was new, when each
new delight had been a miracle—perfect and complete within itself, but
that time was gone. This was not new. This was achingly
familiar, but it would never be old, and the miracle was still
complete, still perfect.
Catherine’s hands were tangled in his hair, holding
his mouth fast against hers, leaving Vincent the lion’s share of
work. Catherine’s sweater was no impediment, but it meant they
had to stop kissing, which proved problematic. Vincent’s first
attempts to pull away were met with furious resistance, and he
relented, his hands gentle on the smooth, warm skin over her
shoulderblades. The warmth of his hands eventually communicated
itself to Catherine’s pleasure-fogged senses, and it was the thought of
those warm hands in other places that convinced her to let him drag his
mouth away and lift the sweater over her head.
If Vincent had been worried that Catherine would be
chilly without her sweater, the heat rising off her skin would have
reassured him, but he had not been worried. He had, instead, been
entranced with the sight of Catherine worrying the lacings of his vest,
her slender hands working furiously to unknot the soft leather.
Vincent stilled her hands with a touch, then stepped
back and shucked the vest over his shoulders, letting it fall on the
kitchen tile. Initially reluctant to see him withdraw, no matter
how temporarily, Catherine nevertheless made good use of the
opportunity before her. Shucking his vest over his head has
caused his shirt to rise, revealing a golden expanse of torso that just
begged to be touched. Catherine’s hands on him, eager and
insistent, caused Vincent to gasp, and when his arms were free again,
he draped them possessively around her hips. This meant that
Catherine’s hands could roam unimpeded over his chest and abdomen, but
their hips were still pressed familiarly close. Catherine’s hands
stroked and teased, grazing his taut muscles with satisfaction.
Mine, she thought happily. All mine.
Strictly speaking, their bond communicated feelings,
not words, but some of her possessiveness—and her delight in that
possession—communicated itself effectively. Ruefully, Vincent
regarded her, reveling in her smugness. Feeling his gaze,
Catherine looked up, her eyes bright and feverish, her wide smile a
challenge and an invitation.
“Mine,” she said, and kissed him with that smiling mouth.
Chuckling, Vincent bent to her, taking her kiss and
demanding more. “Yes,” he murmured, his mouth against her throat,
and let his tongue flick across her fevered skin. She gasped and
arched against him, drawing his head down, and Vincent obliged,
pressing a trail of kisses across her collarbone, and only stopping
when he felt her hand inside the waistband of his dungarees, tugging
the hook open. It was not easy to do one-handed, but she managed
without complaint, because her other hand had reached to cup his firm
bum. That got more than a rise out of Vincent.
He groaned, his grasp on her hips tightening
convulsively, and bent to cover one straining breast with his
“Yes, yes,” Catherine panted, writhing as his mouth
sucked and licked and teased her nipple erect through the insubstantial
fabric of her bra. It was not—quite—what was wanted, and Vincent
pulled the fabric down with his teeth so that he could capture the rosy
nipple between his teeth. Catherine cried out as his tongue
flicked impudently across the sensitive tip, teasing her, and she gave
up her purchase on his backside to use both hands to wrench his zipper
It was Vincent’s turn to gasp and cry out, but
Catherine’s laugh was tonic. “Mine, too,” she said, and grasped
him firmly between her soft, strong hands.
Catherine’s drycleaner often wondered why her
expensive slacks so often needed the zippers replaced. Her slacks
joined his on the floor and then his hands were inside the edges of her
lacy panties, pushing them over the swell of her hips and to the
floor. Catherine was saved the necessity of stepping out of them
when Vincent’s warm hands cupped her bottom, lifting her onto the edge
of the sink. This was—almost—perfect, given their relative
Almost perfect became perfect as their bodies
joined, and Catherine relinquished the hold of her hands and replaced
it with the clasp of her body, loving the feel of him with her, inside
her, filling her to capacity.
“Catherine,” Vincent groaned, and fastened his mouth
over hers. Her arms were around his shoulders, and she wriggled
impatiently, wanting their bodies as close as humanly possible.
Her lover obliged, clutching her to him as they began to move.
Gently at first, because his control was so tenuous, Vincent’s body
worked with hers, his thrusts becoming more fervid, more insistent as
they caught the ancient rhythm and entered the timeless dance.
“Yes, oh, Vincent, like that, oh…yesss,” Catherine
gasped, but Vincent wanted those lips under his and he smothered her
cries of pleasure with his hard, hungry mouth. Catherine groaned,
her ankles tightening over his back. Vincent might have conquered
her lips, but her tongue warred with his for supremacy. When he
gasped, she tore her mouth away and bit him smartly on the neck.
He shivered and redoubled his efforts to drive her over the edge, his
body ramming into hers with abandon. He felt her body coil, felt
her back arch in sublime anticipation and he bent and ravaged her other
straining breast as her body began to buck.
“Yes, oh god, yes, oh, Vincent, oh—more! Yes, yes!”
More, thought Vincent dazedly. Oh
yes—everything! And his hold grew more possessive, each
thrust more deliberate, timed to her cries of pleasure and
need. Her hands clutched at him desperately, her body held
captive and set free in the same act, and she laughed for the joy of
it. “Yes, Vincent,” Catherine cried exultantly. “Oh,
Vincent, Vincent, Vincent….”
The sound of his name on her lips, the feel of her
hands in his hair, her body, offered willingly and without reservation
calmed the deep places in his soul and pushed him, finally, over the
edge where worlds blend and souls unite and bodies become one.
Catherine decided that taking off what remained
seemed easier than trying to reclaim what was gone, and Vincent more
than enjoyed the sight of Catherine running around the apartment with a
short robe and nothing else. The fact that she didn’t bother to
belt it was an added bonus, and Vincent watched her move about the
kitchen deftly. There was something oddly erotic about watching
Catherine make coffee—surely the most domestic of activities—in the
altogether, and he stood in the doorway and smiled at her. His
shirt had been a casualty of their lovemaking, but he had retrieved his
trousers. Catherine turned and smiled at him over her
shoulder. She liked the sight of him in her kitchen, leaning in
the doorway and watching her with hot, hungry eyes.
“You didn’t even let me serve dessert,” she complained.
Vincent made a sign that might have been protest, or
negation, or simply amusement, and she grinned impudently at him, not
at all abashed.
“Fine,” she said airily. “I can eat this whole chocolate marble cake by myself.”
Vincent laughed at last, loving her bravado after
the way her body had surrendered so completely, so wholly, to
his. “I’ll get the plates.”
After the coffee was done, and two enormous wedges
of cake rested on the dessert plates, they eschewed the table and went
to sit in the living room. Catherine perched on his lap in the
big overstuffed armchair and they had cake, and coffee and…finally—once