“You’re not how I pictured you.”
“Uh oh. That bad?” She asked.
“Not bad. It’s just that online you’re a little…”
“Much is not the world I’d use. You’re different. You’ve blushed thrice today. Online you never seems like you’d blush at anything.”
She smiled. “Oh. That. Yeah well… there’s a difference between sitting behind a computer and typing and standing in front of a crowd.”
“I’m not a crowd and you can barely look into my eyes.”
She laughed and looked away.
“Four times. It’s actually a little cute.”
“It’s not! You just have those… weird sort of eyes.”
He clutched at his chest in a mock heart attack sort of way.
“ I won’t lie. That will take years to heal.”
“I don’t mean it like that. Your eyes are pierce-y. Like you are reading me.” She turned to look at him “Are you reading me right now?”
“I am actually. You’re thinking ‘I’m going to turn this on him so he can change the subject’”.
“Is it working?”
He smiled and leaned forward, reaching for her hand.
“No, but at least you’re looking at me right now.”
She willed herself not to look away. He was trying to prove a point and she wasn’t going to let him win. Even if it meant having her eyes burned by his, she would not look away. She was doing great so far. I mean, sure she was starting to get a bit teary-eyed but she was still looking at him. This wasn’t too bad after… what was he doing?! Why was he biting his lower lip? This was cheating considering she had pictured those lips kissing bits of her on numerous occasions. Ah, dammit! Just look at his eyes. Look at his eyes! But they had changed. Like they had sensed where her mind had wandered off to and were now judging her. So dark and searching. So sensual…
“Okay, that’s enough of that.” She said, freeing her hand from his.
“Oh wow! A whole 7 seconds without looking away. I’d say that’s a new world record, Ma’am.”
“Oh, shut up!”
He was quiet for a while before saying, “I hope it’s not me, though. I’m not boring and you’re not being nice and not letting me know.”
“I’m not nice enough to meet you for what… the 5th time now? You’re just… I don’t know. I’m not comfortable around you.”
“That came out wrong but I don’t know how else to say it. I don’t know how to be myself around you. Not that any of this is pretending. But I’m also holding back parts of me.”
She laughed. “Thanks but it’s not something that’s fixed with a ‘don’t’. I can be myself with other people but I hesitate when it’s around someone that I… you know.”
They looked at each other.
“I like you, too. Nothing you do will have me running for the hills. I think.”
“Ha! That’s very reassuring.”
“Tell me how I can make you comfortable. Do we go dancing? Would that work?”
It was cute seeing him excited for this.
“Oh god no. I’m an awkward dancer.”
He thought for a minute before an idea came to him.
“I have a camera.”
“Uh huh. I’ve seen your photos. If this doesn’t get you to loosen up I don’t know what else will. Grab your bag.”
• • •
She didn’t know how to tell him it wasn’t going to happen how he thought it would. I mean sure, cameras did something to her but this was him! Camera or no camera, she wasn’t going to bring out her freaky side in front of him.
“You’re doing great,” he said, clicking away. “Hold that pose and turn your head a little to your left. That’s it. Love it.”
They had been at it for about 10 minutes and though she wouldn’t admit it, she was kind of getting the hang of it. It was awkward as hell when they started but now she could stand there without looking like an idiot. This was actually fun.
“I can get creative, can’t I?”
“Honey, it’s your world now. Do as you please.”
And so she did. She unzipped her jacket and let one arm hang loose. This was fun.
• • •
“Oh wow! Umm…”
“Is it too much? Shouldn’t I have?”
He swallowed. “I’m just surprised is all.”
She felt her feet get cold.
“I’m so sorry. I don’t know what I was thinking. I’ll take it off.”
“No, don’t! I just thought when you said you’d be changing it would be into another dress not… that.”
“This is the only other thing I had in here.”
“You always carry it around?”
“No. I bought it today.” She pointed to the discarded wrapping on the floor. “Are you sure you are okay with this?”
“I’m sure I’m not because you look so… good in it but I’ll live. So where do you wanna take these. On the bed?”
They started with her just sitting. The uncomfortable feeling had returned and she didn’t know what to do. But a few clicks and she was back to her normal self. She got on the bed and did a couple of poses kneeling. The lingerie made it difficult to be too free so she planned every pose ahead. And with each one he said she was doing great. Maybe it was his words. Maybe it was the camera. Or perhaps how sensual she felt wearing lace. Or maybe it was a combination of everything. It didn’t matter what made her take off the coverup, all she knew was that she had to get it off. And she did. He peeped from behind the camera.
“You’re being very unfair,” he said.
“My world, remember?”
Click, he went. She was no longer afraid. He took shots of her from every angle and with every one she could feel the freak screaming to be freed. She let a strap hang loose. Then another. Slowly she let her hand slide in and cup one of her breast and let the fabric fall off. A few clicks later and she was doing the same with the other. Why was this such a turn on?
“Can I lie on the bed?”
He came from behind the camera with the most ridiculous-looking expression she had ever seen.
“Seriously, the girl with only hands covering her boobs is being polite now?”
She bit her lip to stifle a laugh.
“I’ll take that as a yes.”
And with that she lowered herself on it.
“Okay, now I can barely see you from back here. Don’t move, I’ll come to you.”
He got on top of the bed, kneeling, her legs between his.
“Much better. Look at the lens, Baby. Yeah, with that finger in your mouth like that. That’s it.”
It was like foreplay to her and she hoped he wouldn’t feel her squirming.
“Keep still, Wildling.”
“I’m trying to get closeup shots of your hair covering your face like that. I’ll frame these.”
Frame? He wanted her face on a frame? She smiled. Definitely The One now. And once the thought was in her head she couldn’t be bothered to act right. Slowly she let the hand covering her breasts fall to her side. Slowly he lowered the camera. Their eyes met. Slowly she reached out and pulled him to her, legs locking him in place.
“Why don’t we put that little toy away. I know another game we could play.”