That’s how it began.
As Simtober brought cooler weather, we spent long, lazy days together, entwined in each other’s arms. We started going running together in the mornings and sometimes in the evenings after Billy finished painting. The road was usually vacant around these times. It was just me, the road, a pair of running shoes and Billy.
If it was morning, we’d typically stumble back through the front door kissing passionately. Once we managed to detach, Billy would whip up whatever he could find for breakfast, usually hard-boiled eggs, single serving yogurt, half an orange, and buttered croissants. I particularly liked his strong Simtalian brew.
While Billy cooked, I took a hot shower. His water pressure was much better than our tiny trailer so I had taken to leaving little niceties for myself at his place. Soap. Shampoo. Toothbrush. Extra clothes.
Sometimes we’d eat breakfast on the deck of his houseboat and watch the sunrise. Sometimes we’d picnic in front of the television. Sometimes we’d eat breakfast on the bed.
If it was evening, we’d still stumble through the door, Billy’s hands intertwined in my hair and mine around his back as we locked lips.
Billy would make a pot of coffee, regardless of the temperature. He knew me well. Keep me in cinnamon and coffee and I was your girl.
Most nights we’d turn on the television and channel surf, watching whatever caught our attention. Most nights, we wouldn’t finish whatever we started watching because makeout sessions were inevitable. I just couldn’t get enough of his luscious lips.
Many nights I’d make it home well after midnight, usually one-thirty or two. Dad was usually asleep or working. I’d crawl into bed and text Billy for another fifteen or so minutes – little flirtatious things like I can’t stop thinking about you or I love your lips. He would send me flirty messages back like You’re in my dreams or Can’t wait to see you again.
Some nights I didn’t make it home at all. Billy and I would stay up all night laughing and teasing and talking… although come to think of it, we weren’t doing much talking. We were usually tousling around on whatever surface we could find –
even the floor.
I would sneak back into the trailer in the early morning and hope Dad wouldn’t notice.Usually I said I was sleeping over at Audrey’s. Audrey generally, though sometimes grudgingly, covered for me, not that Dad checked. He was pretty trusting of me, something Mamma wasn’t. I wasn’t sure how to tell Dad about my new boyfriend… if that’s what he was. We hadn’t really labeled ourselves yet. We were sorta-kinda lovers who hadn’t had sex yet. It didn’t mean it wasn’t on my mind.
I thought about him while I was brushing my teeth. I thought about him at work. I would space off while tutoring Ethan. I thought about him when I was cooking. I thought about him on my bike ride to his place or work or the store.
I thought about him when I was getting dressed. I tried to pick out flattering things since I knew he liked the color green. I thought about him in the shower. I couldn’t stop thinking about him. I was addicted. I wondered what happened to that scared, timid little girl only months before who was afraid of dating and relationships and kissing and sex. I couldn’t even say the word woohoo aloud. Wow… so much had changed. I wasn’t the same woman since I met Billy. He was so different from Davis. I think I was secretly thrilled about that. Davis and I had spent a lot of time together talking.
When Billy and I were together, we rarely talked. Come to think of it… I didn’t know much about his work. I didn’t know much about his family except his mother had once been a dancer in the Palms. I didn’t know much about his education – where he went to high school and college and what his degree was in. Did he major in art or something else? I didn’t know if he had siblings or who his friends were.The only thing I really knew was Billy was obsessed with one other thing beside me – art. When I came over and saw he was in his dark room, I would smile and carry my bags of groceries into the kitchen to fix us whatever I managed to pick up – most days it was sandwiches and milk.
If we were really lucky, I’d have enough money to buy enough shrimp for our ramen noodle soup to fill a giant bowl for us to share.
Billy also adored painting. He would spend hours getting his colors and his brushes just right. Sometimes I would read while he painted, but it was hard to focus on the words. So much for my wicked concentration Billy found so attractive! Now I honed my sights on him instead and I was beginning to see the appeal of watching someone do something they loved. He was so sexy when he concentrated.
Tonight, like many other nights, we cuddled on the bed after a long run in the rain. We had both showered, separately, Billy downstairs and I used the upstairs one. Billy threw on a robe over his boxer shorts but left the ties undone, baring his thick carpet of black chest hair. He brought up two cups of piping hot coffee with cream and two sugars. He still didn’t get my order right. I didn’t really care. It was the thought that counted.
“Your hair looks cute,” he remarked as we watched some nonsensical children’s cartoon.
“Cute?” I scrunched my nose.
He thumbed the edge of my hairline. “I like how it’s curling.”
“Oh,” I said. “I didn’t bring my straightener.”
“It looks nice wavy,” he complimented. “What about mine?”
I laughed. “Yours is… well…” I detached my fingers from his hand and brushed his own hair line. “You used too much gel.” I made a face.
“Well, how do you think I achieve such perfection!” Billy winked at me.
I smacked him with the pillow. “Cocky, aren’t we?”
“Oh you asked for it!” Billy leaped off the bed and picked up a pillow.
We whacked each other for almost ten minutes, chasing each other all over the room, landing shots, missing some. I tugged Billy’s robe off and he yanked my jacket off my shoulder. I ended up removing it while he landed a lucky shot on my head. A feather floated down my white tee, and I went to fetch it when Billy lifted me off the floor, and tugged my top and athletic pants off for me. I giggled as he laid me back on the bed onto a sea of feathers and began covering me with kisses.
“It tickles…” I gasped.
“What?” he grinned mischievously as he pulled back momentarily. “My lips?”
“No… the feathers…” I laughed.
“Well, I’ll fix that,” he proceeded to brush every feather off the bed before scooping me up in his arms again and kissing me properly on the lips.
After a minute, we resurfaced for air.
“Kass?” Billy said my name.
He rarely said my name. He usually called me Red or “my girl.” He was looking at me with a sudden and almost urgent sense of seriousness. I wondered if this was the moment, if this was the time. Would he ask me or would we just instinctively know? He was communicating intently with his eyes, and I knew he wanted me… all of me. I nervously bit my lip before I could stop myself. Am I ready? This was the defining moment. It never felt like this with Davis. I couldn’t believe I was about to do something I never thought I’d do. What would Audrey say? Ayesha? Andi? It felt like eternity. Then I heard the glass sliding door bang downstairs.
“Wait, what’s that?” I pulled back.
“Kass?” a voice called out.
“Oh leaping llamas!” I gasped. “That’s Ethan!”
“What the hell is he doing on my boat?” Billy grumbled.
“Kass, are you here?” Ethan called out, this time his voice closer to the stairs.
I panicked. “He can’t see me like this!” I whispered frantically as I heard steps on the stairs.
“Hide,” Billy mouthed and I half-tumbled, half-rolled over the far side of the teal-and-gold checkered bed.
I heard Ethan’s feet clunked up the stairs. The straw-colored carpet felt itchy but I didn’t dare flinch. I hoped they wouldn’t hear my wildly beating heart.
“You’re that Ethan, kid, aren’t you?” Billy grunted, thankfully stopping him once he reached the landing.
“Is Kass here?” Ethan asked.
Neither one of them were for polite greetings.
“Do you make a habit of barging into people’s homes and then just wandering around?” Billy asked, clearly annoyed.
“The door was unlocked.”
“I heard a noise.”
“Lots of people hear noises. Doesn’t mean they go poking their nose where it doesn’t belong.”
“I thought Kass might be here. I know…” Ethan paused. “You two are seeing each other?”
It sounded more like a statement than a question.
“What of it?” Billy replied gruffly.
“Is she here?”
“What do you want?”
“She’s missed three of our tutoring sessions. I just thought I’d check to see if she’s here or sick or something.”
“Yeah, well… you could’ve called her.”
“You don’t have to be rude about it.”
“Actually, I do. This is my home and you’re trespassing.”
I saw Billy grabbing Ethan’s arm as he walked him back downstairs despite the teen’s protests and within a moment, I heard the door shut and the lock click. Billy returned alone.
“Sorry about that,” he muttered.
I lifted myself off the floor and pulled my clothes back on. I wasn’t sure what to say but the mood was effectively killed.
“You hungry?” Billy asked me, turning off the television.
“Sure,” I shrugged, putting my jacket back on.
He pulled me into a hug. “Come on, I’ll order us a pizza.”