This is part 2 of a story that I am posting in 3 parts. For part 1, look here: https://imasillypirate.wordpress.com/2017/03/20/downpour-part-1
Soft lips brushed his ear and Flynn caught his breath, his eyes flitting open. For a moment he was confused as to where he was. The fire had burned down low but was still big enough to throw dynamic, dancing shadows across the entire room. He looked around for the owner of the lips, expecting to find Emily, and he looked for clues to his whereabouts: he only found the later which informed him that the former must have been a vivid dream. He was in his underpants, burritoed in a blanket on the couch in the rented cabin, with a book open on his chest. The windows were dark now, but he could still hear the roar of the sky falling outside. It had been light when he sat down with the book on Slavic mythological creatures to do some research for that damn, stubborn novel. As far as he could recall, he had made it less than a page through the section on the Rusalka, then he was waking up. His clothes still hung near the fire and he forced himself to his feet, knowing that the clothing had probably been hanging there too long and needed to be rotated. Though his body responded and he went through the motions of feeling the clothing, turning the damp parts toward the flame, then stoking up the fire, his mind still lingered on the couch.
That kiss had felt so real… but he DID have a habit of tricking himself into feeling what he wanted to feel. He dropped the blanket on the couch and made his way to the stove, slipping the tea kettle onto the burner and cranking up the heat.
Staring at the gas flames licking at the bottom of the kettle, his skin prickled in the cold air of the cabin. Exposed in his boxers, Flynn lingered on the edge of shivering; his muscles were tight and ready to start the shivering process, but they weren’t doing so yet. Any small change in temperature would tip him from the razor’s edge into fits of shaking from the cold, or relax his muscles. He looked forward to climbing back under the blanket on the couch with a cup of tea. Then, once warm, he would probably start packing up. He’d be leaving the following morning.
The knocking at the door was faint at first. He wasn’t even sure he’d heard it, but while left wondering if it was possible between the faint first knocks and the later, louder knocks, his body turned a whole new kind of cold. This one was the chill of apprehension. He didn’t know exactly what time it was, but it was late. It was pouring rain and he was in his boxers in the middle of nowhere. Despite the myriad reasons Flynn knew he shouldn’t answer the door, he didn’t see an alternative. There was no peephole in the door or he would have used it. Another set of three knocks came from the door as he reached it. Not urgent, demanding knocks, but solid and straight to business; there was no misinterpreting what it was or what its creator wanted.
Taking a deep breath, he opened the door a few inches, leaving his mostly naked body hidden behind the door and peering through, “Hello?” he said. His voice had all the confidence of an orphan in a Dickens novel.
The fear for his own safety melted away immediately when his eyes landed on the woman standing at the door, replaced by a fear for her. She was drenched from head to shoeless feet. Her red hair was plastered to her down-turned face and slumped shoulders and her white dress clung to her thin body, obscuring only as much from view as a thick fog might.
“You look like you’re freezing, where did you come from?” he asked, opening the door a little more. Noticing as soon as he said it that she wasn’t shaking from the cold either, but in her case that this was probably due to the onset of hypothermia, rather than just not being cold enough. She looked up then, revealing a face that mirrored Emily’s, and he caught his breath. His mind never lingered on the idea that it might be her. There were differences for sure — this woman was a few years younger than Emily, her hair was longer, she was a little shorter, her skin less tan — but they could have been sisters.
She moved towards the door, and he stepped aside pulling the door the rest of the way open, saying, “Let’s get you warm.”
She moved slowly into the room, leaving a spreading trail of water around her naked feet, her eyes not leaving his. In the light of the room, he noticed another difference in her from Emily, her eyes were an almost unnaturally bright green. “Come on,” he said, closing the door and walking toward the fire, “come stand next to the fire.”
The fire stoked up easily and, by the time she made it to stand next to him, he had it built up to a decently sized roar. Flynn could feel her bright eyes burning into his back, the whole time he worked, and when he turned, sure enough, he found her staring at him. The eyes no longer burned into his, however, the walked slowly up and down his body and he was suddenly reminded of his nakedness.
“Here,” he said, moving quickly to the couch and grabbing the blanket, “wrap yourself in this,” but she only shook her head. Her eyes had found his again and locked there. Her expression betrayed nothing of what was happening inside her mind, as if her face were a soft, beautiful mask. She just watched him. He was trying to come up with an excuse to go into the other room and cover himself, but it felt weird to take care of himself before making sure that she was on her way to warming up. Then the tea kettle broke the silence and he bound over to the stove, saying “Oh yeah, I was just making some tea. Would you like some?”
After he pulled the kettle off the burner and turned the stove off, he looked back to her. She nodded, those bright green eyes fixed on him. She was already moving toward the stove.
“Stay by the fire, I’ll bring you the tea,” he said, looking uncomfortably away from her and busying himself with looking through the mugs in the cupboard. He had been using the same mug his entire stay. Some of the others were dusty. He settled on one and rinsed it.
“Black okay?” he asked, “It’s a little late, and black tea is pretty caffeinated, but it’s what I have.”
He looked up to find that she was still making that slow, deliberate walk toward him. Each step paused for a moment above the floor, water dripping off of it before it touched down, a small puddle spreading around each foot.
“You need to stay by the fire to get warm,” he repeated.
She shook her head slowly, her head moving, but her eyes remaining fixed on his. Her face had started to betray a smile. He dropped a single bag of black tea in each cup.
Her next step was faster than its predecessors and she put her foot down without the strange, calculated pause. The foot had only just touched the ground, though, when she made the first sound he had heard from her. She hissed and jerked her forward foot back from the floor and quickly replaced it in the small puddle left by her previous step.
“Oh no, did you pick up a splinter?” he asked, setting the kettle down and crouching in front of her. Uncomfortable with how badly he suddenly wanted to be near her. “Let me see.”
He reached for the foot, but stopped when she started to move. She slipped the dress off her shoulders and began peeling it away from her skin, down her body, exposing her breasts.
“Good idea,” Flynn said, standing and turning away, suddenly burning with embarrassment that he had taken the moment to glance at her body before turning, “get the wet clothes off. I’ll grab you a-” but he stopped when he felt her cold hand on his shoulder from behind. It slithered a little down onto his arm and he allowed himself to be turned to face her. His eyes went to the dress, now in a spreading puddle around her feet. He looked back up to her face, passing by the tight, thin body with little droplets of water clinging to the fine hairs covering her smooth skin, “we should get you into some dry-” but then he stopped, she was no longer looking at his eyes. Her view had found its way to his crotch, which he was embarrassed to find hardening.
“I-I, I’m sorry, I… um…” he stammered, trying to turn around again, but she held his arm with surprising strength and looked him in the eyes, a knowing grin now painted across her face. Her other hand clutched his side and drew him to toward her. He didn’t protest now, letting himself be drawn in close to her. He stopped just in front of her, her perky breasts almost touching his chest, their faces less than eight inches apart, his feet wet now in her puddle. He took a deep, unsteady breath, as her hand slithered from his side up his chest, to the side of his face. She smelled like a forest stream. Asked previously to describe the specific scent of a forest stream, Flynn would have been at a loss, or even claimed that they didn’t have a common smell, but in that instant he knew exactly what the smell was. It was refreshing, and coaxing, like a stream might be during a long hike on a hot day. She was his stream in the hike he’d been taking since Emily left and he wanted to rest on her banks, sip from her waters, and bathe in her refreshing pools. Her lips parted and she pulled him in deeper. Her body was cold, and wet against his, but her lips were warm. Her kiss was hungry, and his was the same, his arms now around her feeling her lean, muscular body against his.
Their kissing increasing in frequency, she led him back toward the fire, their shuffling steps sloshing through the shallow puddle on the floor. Then she pulled away from him with a gasp.
“I’m sorry, did I-” he started, letting go, but stopped when he saw that she wore a playful smile as she took another step backward. Not knowing what to do, Flynn waited, watching. Needing her body to be against his own, but exercising restraint because he didn’t understand what was happening. All at once, she bound to the door. She moved in a fast, fluid, motion, without a noise, faster than he had seen her move so far. Then the door was open and she was standing in the doorway, one hand raised toward him, her index finger waving in the international sign for “come to me.”
Immediately he began toward her, but when he reached the door, she was in the driveway, still looking back at him, the cabin’s light glinting off her eyes. Worry that she should get warm was gone; Flynn was no longer thinking as he rushed out into the rain, immediately becoming soaked as he watched her turn and run off into the trees. He followed.