Sunday, April 15, 2018

Work Out

"Hey, we got a good thing.
Don't know if I'mma see you again.
But is that a good thing?
'Cause girl I can't be your man.
no, ma'am.
I know what's on your brain.
You probably hope it never would end.
Like is it the real thing
or is just a one-night stand?
Well, then...
Straight up. Now tell me do you really wanna love me forever—
Oh, oh, oh—
Or is it just a hit-and-run?
Well, hey.
Straight up. I tell you I just really wanna cut when we're together.
Oh, oh, oh.
Come here, girl, let's get it on.
Work out for me, work out for me." Work Out by J. Cole

Unlike the last time, Uriel and I wasted no time with talking as soon as we entered his apartment. He had a condom on him, so we didn't even make it into his bedroom. He took me right against the wall in his hallway, my legs wrapped around his waist as he thrust into me.

When we finished, he let me down on wobbly legs and went to the bathroom. I took a few moments to catch my breath before I found my purse, pulled out my phone and called an Uber. I know what I said about staying however long he wanted in the heat of the moment, but now the moment was over. I was straightening up my dress when Uriel returned from the bathroom in just black joggers. I couldn't help my appreciative stare of his upper body.

"You planning your great escape?" He walked into the darken kitchen to get himself a glass of water.

"No but I do need to get going." I said, following him into the kitchen.

"Ok, as long as you know you don't have to sneak out." He said as he drained his water.

 I shook my head and replied, "I didn't sneak out; I just left. Isn't that how one night stands work?"

"Two night stand now." He corrected me. "It works however you want it to work."

"This is just sex so it works best if I leave." I explained honestly.

He studied me for a moment before he nodded. "Works for me."

My phone beeped signaling my Uber had arrived. "Alright, I'm going to head out."

"Wait." He stopped me, walking out of the kitchen and to a hallway closet. He pulled out the purple hat I left the last time. He placed the hat on my head, stroking my hair and neck before pulling his hand away.

"You still have my number?"

I nodded.

"Call me if you're up for a third or fourth night stand."

I grinned. "Sure. I'll see you Uriel."

"Hopefully soon Lily." He called to me as I left.

When I got home I took a quick shower before I hopped into bed with Justine and passed out. My phone ringing woke me up late Sunday morning. I answered it when I saw it was Richard.

"I have donuts. Are you up?" He asked.

"I'm up. Come on over." I said simply.

I really wanted to roll over and go back to sleep, but I wanted answers about his disappearing act more. Yeah, I ended up going home with Uriel, but it still made me wonder what was going on with Richard. Before I confronted Jake or Bianca about what they knew, I was going to give Richard a chance to explain himself to me.


As I waited for Richard, I read through the texts I got from Amber and Staci. Amber got on to me for leaving early and Staci wanted to know if I really left with Richard. I replied to Amber telling her they abandoned me first and deflected Staci's question by asking if she left with her Tinder guy.

After I replied to my texts and missed calls, I checked my social media accounts. I cringed at some of the videos of me dirty dancing with Richard on his Snap story and liked most of the pictures I was tagged in on Instagram. Dr. Chapman commented on the picture I posted with Justine wearing a green four leaf clover headband.

Tyler: How did you get her to wear that and pose for a picture?

Me: It took about 30 minutes and 50 shots to get that one good picture!

Dr. Chapman messaged me right away.

Tyler: Definitely worth the effort! What are you doing on actual St. Patrick's Day?

Me: Working lol

Tyler: What time do you get off?

Before I could respond, the door bell rang. I put my phone down to answer it. Richard was waiting for me, coffee and donuts in hand. We went inside and got settled on the couch.

"I didn't know which donut said sorry the best, so I got one of everything." He started, opening up an assortment of Dunkin Donuts.

"Anything with chocolate but you don't have to apologize. What happened last night though? I thought we were going to hook up before you bailed." I said, reaching for a chocolate with sprinkles.

"Us hooking up is not a good idea."

"Jake told me the same thing. I wanna know why." I commented, munching on my donut.

His eyes widen. "Jake told you that? When?"

"Last night, and Bianca said the same thing when she was in town. Why would they say that?" I asked, looking him straight in the eye.

He shrugged, avoiding eye contact. "I don't know."

"I can always ask Jake or Bianca. I rather hear it from you. I thought we were friends-"

"We are friends." He cut in.

"The way friendships work is being honest with each other. It's pretty fucked up you won't be straight with me." We sat there, at an impasse. When I finished my donut, I was ready to throw in the towel until Richard place his head in his hands in defeated. 

"I was in a relationship..." He paused, moving his hands away to look up at me. "I recently broke up with him." He finished, studying me. I knew he was gauging my reaction so I remained calm. On the inside, I was flabbergasted.

"You're gay?" I asked, evenly.

"I'm attracted to both men and women." He confessed. "My last relationship was with a man."

"And you felt like you had to hide that from me?" I questioned, stunned. I tried to think back to anything I might have said to make him feel uncomfortable with telling me the truth. I couldn't think of anything.

"No. I was in a relationship with a closeted man for 6 years. I couldn't talk about my relationship without outing him." He explained. After he did, it all came together and started to make sense.

"Dominick... That's why he's moving out. You two broke up?" It was more of a statement than a question. When he nodded, I took a sharp breath. "I still don't want to out him; I'm trusting you to keep this between us." He continued.

"Of course." I promised him.

We sat in silence for a few moments before I picked up a blueberry donut to eat.

He raised a brow at me.

"What? Did you want blueberry?" I asked reaching out to give it to him.

He declined. "That's it? You don't have any other questions for me?"

I shook my head. "I'm kinda curious to how Bianca and Jake know."

Richard explained how for some reason Dominick told Bianca he was gay, but he had no idea how Jake knew. I told him Jake was really good at reading people. Whether it was his years in security or a third eye, he always picked up on things that others missed or tried to hide.

"Do you want me to talk to him? Makes sure he keeps it to himself." I asked.

"Obviously he hasn't told Dino what he suspects so Dominick's secret is safe with him. Dominick is- was- the only reason I wasn't open about it. There's never been a closet for me. Everyone important to me already knows." He explained.

I got up and embraced him in a hug. When he hugged me back, I sighed. "I'm glad you consider me important in your life." I said, pulling away. "But I gotta know: What  would have happened if I liked, jumped you last night?"

"I would have reminded you about your boyfriend." He gave me a half smile.

"I don't have a boyfriend. I'm dating. I can date multiple people. That wouldn't have stopped me." I pointed out.

"I've resisted you before: Remember your red boots and would you rather game?"

"Shut up. And they were ginger boots!" I pushed him away, laughing. He laughed too.
We hung out for awhile longer before he had to leave. After he left, I immediately called Bianca. I told her that I knew about Richard and Dominick.

"Did Dominick finally come out?" Bianca gasped.

"No. Richard told me after I tried to go home with him." I fudged the truth a little.

"What? I told you not to date him! And what happened with Christian?"

"I wasn't going to date him... Just fuck him a little bit. And you're the one that told me to date around!"

"Wow... So you took my advice about dating around but not about leaving Richard alone?"

"Shut up Bianca. That's not the point."

"You're right...How do you fuck someone a little bit? Is it just the tip in?"

"How did you know about Dominick and Richard?" I ignored her.

"Remember when I came from Paris and I was freaked out about me and Noelle?"

"I remember you being weird but not telling me anything."

"At that bar I got drunk and I told Dominick what happened. We talked and he knew exactly how I felt. I thought it was just the alcohol but after I spent the night on his couch at the apartment that he shared with Richard, I put two and two together."

"Ok... I kinda did the same thing when Richard told me he broke up with his boyfriend."

"They'll work it out. They have spats all the time."

"I think this spat was the last one. Dominick moved out."

Bianca sighed. "I warned him Richard wasn't going to put up with being his secret indefinitely. He's terrified his family won't accept him. My situation with my mom didn't help. "

"Did you told him how dysfunctional our family is?"

"I tried but he wasn't hearing me. Let me give him a call. We haven't been in touch as much lately. I wanna make sure he's ok."

"Alright B. Call me back!"

While I waited for her call back, I called Amber to see if she wanted to go shopping for Miami together. She told me she and Staci started shopping weeks ago and were already packed.

"Really? Y'all left me out even though I invited you?" I complained.

"Considering Christian buys you designer fits all the time, we figured he got you." Amber explained.

"That's alright... I got y'all." I threatened.

Amber laughed before we said goodbye. After I started washing a load of clothes, I got online and started browsing clothes for Miami.

When Bianca finally called me back, she told me Dominick didn't answer. I asked her advice about outfits I should take to Miami. She told me she would send me some options that would be good for day, night and in between. I gladly accepted her help, gratefully I would have options besides what I would pick out on my own.


When I got to work Monday, Adil and Dr. Clayton was working with Paul Bolen and an older gentleman I assumed was Dennison. I grit my teeth, but made my way over to greet them. I didn't want to, but I definitely wanted to appear to be bigger than the situation.

"Good afternoon. Dr. Fahri, Dr. Clayton. Paul, how are you?" I greeted them, waiting for an introduction to Dennison.

"Clyde, this is Lily Harris. The closing team lead." Dr. Clayton introduced us.

"Pleasure to meet you." He said in a loud, bolsters voice. "Now I see why you wanted the evening shift Paul." He laughed. Dr. Clayton had the decency to look embarrassed while Adil became occupied on his tablet.

"Just trying to get back on the court Clyde." Paul replied with an apologetic smile to me.

"And we'll get you there. In no time." Clyde responded, looking at me for a reaction. Knowing myself, I already schooled myself to remain unbothered.

"That's right. Go Mavs!" I said with a tight smile. "Excuse me, I need to get ready for my shift."

I went to the team lead office to check my email and go over the schedule when Adil joined me.

"Thank you for your team effort. I really appreciate you supporting the change in rehabilitation." Adil stated.

"Let me ask you something." I ignored his praise. "The change in rehabilitation: was that the best thing for the client or another reason?" I asked.

"I don't understand what you mean?"

"I mean, when you made your decision to accelerate his plan was it based off the best thing for our client or the easiest way out?" I clarified.

"You have no right to question my decision." He said, his ears turning red. "You can either get on board with my decision or find a new position off my team." He said firmly.

His veiled threat at me pissed me off even more, but I nodded my understanding before he left. I seethed the rest of the day. I talked to Christian that night and vented about how frustrated I was with the entire situation at work.

"You still sure about not coming to South by Southwest this weekend? I can help you get our mind off work." Christian said, suggestively.

"Yeah I'm sure." I sighed, unable to not think about who else would be in Austin. I changed the subject by asking what we were doing in Miami so I could pack properly. He told me it was the festival and a pool party that I would need a special outfit for but we could pick something out in Miami. I told him quickly that I had it covered. 

He asked about who was all coming, and I told him it was still just Staci and Amber. He once again reminded me I still had time to invite whoever I wanted and brought up the friends I hung out with for St. Patrick's day. I told him I did and the people I hung out with were mostly Amber's friend. When he asked about Richard, I seriously considered asking him to come. I knew after my breakup, getting away from the space I shared with Trevor helped me tremendously. I advised Christian I might ask him.

Wednesday morning, I woke up with a notification on my phone from Youtube. It was a new video on the Honey Bees page. It was a festive St. Patrick's drink filmed at a location I didn't recognize. I pushed back the little sting of rejection I felt that Sammy did that without even telling me and liked the video before I got ready for work. 

Right before I got ready to leave for work, I received a delivery from UPS. I opened the big box, and was pleasantly surprised by the contents in the box. On top of the matching designer separates, jumpers, dresses, sunglasses and accessories, there were 6 different swimsuits from Noelle's line. I grabbed my phone as I tore through the box.

"Ohmygod Ohmygod ohmygod!!!" I exclaimed after Bianca answered.

"I'm guessing you got the package." I heard the smile in her voice

"Yes! Thank you so much!" I squealed.

"Thank Noelle. I just picked them out, she got them for you."

"Thank her for me!" I said, pulling on a pair of designer shades and gold scarf.

"Thank her yourself. She's right here and you're on speaker."

"Oh..." I stammered, lost for words. "Thank you Noelle."

"You don't have to thank me. Designers send me their products all the time. You'll look fantastic in all of them." Noelle spoke up.

"Still, I was dreading having to shop, pack and dress for Miami now I can't wait! I might wear some of these this week."

Noelle and Bianca both laughed at me.

"Think nothing of it. Just make sure you save the swimsuits for Miami. Maybe pair the white monokini with the floral robe and silver accessories for the festival. Hair up, a stiletto heel..."

"Babe, she just needed clothes, not a stylist." Bianca cut her off.

"I'll take both B. Thank you Noelle. I really appreciate it!"

"Anytime."

When I got home that night, the first thing I tried on was the outfit Noelle suggested. The robe transformed the skimpy one piece into an elegant outfit that had me thinking maybe it was too much. I took a picture of myself and sent it to Christian with the question: What do you think?

Not even 5 minutes later,  Christian video called me.

"God damn, you look incredible" He complimented me, staring at my boobs. "Please tell me that's for my show."

"I don't know. Noelle suggested this for the festival but she also sent me a cute two piece I was thinking instead-"

His face twisted up in disdain. "Hold up. Did you say Noelle sent you that? As in, my ex Noelle?"

"Your ex who is dating my cousin." I added. "I asked Bianca for help and they both sent me some clothes-"

"I told you I could get some options for you. Why would you accept clothes from my ex?" He stopped me.

"Again, she's dating my cousin. Noelle is a stylist and she used to date you. She knows how to dress for things and I don't. It's not like she went out shopping for me. The swimsuits are from her line and she gets clothing sent to her all the time." I corrected him.

"That's a lie. She get sample sizes only. Size 0." Christian disagreed.

"Oh, and there is no way I could be a size 0?" I challenged him. I really wasn't upset, but if this dumb argument continued, I would be.

It worked as he quickly calmed down. "No bae. Everything about is you is a 10:  your face is a 10, body is a 10, hair's a 10, personality's 10."

"Good answer." I smiled weakly.

"I just don't understand how you get an attitude when I buy you gifts but she's trying to buy your approval and that's fine." Christian argued.

"The one time I got an attitude is because I was confused about what it meant and I explained that to you." I started, keeping myself calm instead of getting upset that he was bringing up past events I thought we worked through. "As far as Noelle goes, as long as she treats Bianca right she has my approval. As long as she's in Bianca's life, she's in mine too. I get if that's hard for you, considering what y'all went through, but that's something you need to consider if you wanna be a part of my life."

"I've considered and made my peace with it." He said, solemnly.

"Ok... if it truly bothers you, I won't wear her stuff."

"No. You're right. I'm wrong. Wear whatever you want Lily." He said, sincerely. 

"Ok."



On Thursday, Staci called me inviting me to a beer garden for St. Patrick's day. She sounded like she needed the company so I figured I would have a drink with her. She asked if I could pick her up on the way and I agreed.

I didn't bother to go home to change after work- I put on the joggers and t-shirt I had in my gym bag. When I picked Staci up, she gave my outfit the side eye, but didn't say anything as we headed to the restaurant. I gave Staci a major side eye when we arrived and I saw Ethan and Daniel with a group of people at a table Staci was leading us to. Daniel was standing, waving us over.

"What?" Staci said.

"I knew something was up when you had on that freak em dress. Are y'all dating or what?" I asked.

"No. He's not the dating type."

"I thought you wanted a relationship?"

"I do. Daniel is just fun while I'm actively looking for someone to settle down with." She explained as we approached the table.

"Hi!" She smiled giving Daniel a hug.

"Hey ladies." Daniel beamed at the both of us. "Where's your green Lily? I get the first pinch?" He asked me as he leaned to hug me too.

"Try it and you'll get the first punch." I smiled sweetly at him. Ethan shook his head as he pulled out a chair for me. I gave him a genuine smile before I gave him a one arm hug. "Hi Ethan."

"Hey, how are you doing?" He asked me, hugging me back.

"Considering work sucks, I'm doing peachy!" I said, sitting down.

Ethan sat down beside me and handed me a menu. "What can we order to make you feel better?"

I looked over the menu briefly before saying, "Beer and onion rings is a start."

As he flagged down the waiter, Daniel introduced us to everyone at the table. Once food was ordered and our drinks were served, we eventually got to the topic of my job.

"Remember how I told you about the athletic trainer who was being... What did you call him? Obstinate?" I explained to Ethan.

"Yes. You said he was being a dick."

"Ohmygosh, I didn't even know you used that type of language. How much have you had to drink?" I looked into his eyes, looking for signs of intoxication. I've never seen him drunk before.

"Key words: you said. I'm repeating what you said about him. I'm on my first and last drink. Continue."

"Right. Well, anyway, he went over my boss's head..." In between sips of my beer, I told Ethan what happened.

"You didn't ask him that." Ethan shook his head after I told him about my conversation with Adi.

"I did. I totally did. We both know the only reason he changed the plan was to pacify Dennison. It's bullshit. I have bigger balls then him. Really, all three of them. Combined!" I declared.

"Maybe you do, but it's not about who has the bigger balls. It's about playing the game."

"Oh, it's about balls. They just love pointing out how young and... female I am. You don't get it- they try to make me feel inferior to them." I complained.

"You know how many times I've heard affirmative action every time I succeeded?"
He questioned me.

I thought it over as the waitress delivered our food. I nibbled on a onion ring before I asked him, "Ok. How would you have handled it?"

"I would have asked your boss, preferable in writing, what factors he used in deciding one way versus the other-"

"That's what I did!"

"I can tell by the way you just told me you were confrontational about it. I would have buttered him up a bit-"

"Kiss ass." I interrupted. He continued like he didn't hear me.

"-told him I could have saw it either way and what led him to make the right choice. He would have either told me the truth or made something up. Then, once the opportunity presented for him to contradict himself, I'd nail him with it."

"Wait, what?" I said, my eyes widen, intrigued.

"That's what happens when people stop doing what's right and take the easy way out: it always catches up with them. Work it to your advantage, and best them at their own game." Ethan finished.

"Wow. I'm too impulsive to think that far ahead. That's fucking brilliant." I gushed, admiringly.

He nodded, taking a sip of his beer.  Some girl who worked with Anthony asked Ethan a question, so I turned to Staci. Daniel had his arm around her as they talked animatedly to each other. Not wanting to be a third wheel on their conversation, I told them, "I think I'm going to head out. Can you make sure Staci gets home Daniel?" I asked, pulling out my wallet from my purse.

"Absolutely! Put your money away. I got it. Good seeing you." Daniel smiled at me.

"Good seeing you too! Goodnight." I told everyone. Ethan paused his conversation to walk me to my car. I gave him a hug goodbye.

"I'm still waiting on Aladdin night with EJ. You think he'll wanna come over this weekend?" I asked, pulling back.

"It's Megan's weekend with him, but I'll ask." He said opening my door.

"Thank you. Good night." I said, getting in my car.

"Goodnight."

Friday morning, I had my appointment with Dr. Pereira. I spoke briefly about my situation at work but she agreed with my plan of being proactive instead of reactive when situations arise at work. We spent a bulk of my hour discussing the causal relationship I started with Uriel. 

I confessed my doubts of being able to keep things causal with sex involved and my concerns about what this said about Christian and my relationship. She stressed the importance of honesty and expectations with myself and everyone I was involved with. She told me as long as I maintained honesty and clear expectations, there was nothing to be concerned about. I felt good with the fact I already did with them both.

Megan got in touch with me Friday afternoon, asking if EJ and his friend J-Mike can spend the night on Friday. I quickly agreed, preparing for an Aladdin night with the three of us. As soon as our last client arrived, I worked on the huddle board so we could leave when the clients did. Getting off an hour sooner than normal, I called in my order to an Indian place close to my house. I had enough time time to stop home, straighten up and shower before the food would be ready.

When I got home, I rushed to the shower. I didn't even think about where Justine was until I was getting dressed and I noticed she wasn't in the room with me. I went into the kitchen looking for her when I noticed Richard in my backyard. I went outside, and sure enough Justine was with him.

"What are you doing here?" We asked each other at the same time.

"I live here." I responded smartly.

"Aren't you supposed to be at work still?" He asked.

"I got off early. What are you doing?"

"Eric has a deal on a pindo palm. Wanted me to see if you would have room." He replied.

"Weren't those like 1000?" I asked, remembering the beautiful, massive and pricey trees.

"He said he would do it as long as you refer him to your neighbors." Richard shrugged.

"Ok. Are you done?" I asked.

"Yep. I'll get out of your hair." He got up from the grassy area he was measuring. It was the part of the backyard I was keeping open for Justine.

"I didn't mean it like that. I meant do you wanna have dinner?"

"No, I should leave." He said, looking away. I frowned, hating that it was tense between us. I really thought we were cool after our talk and I still wanted to invite him to Miami.

"No stay. I'm having an Aladdin night with EJ. I might even have a belly dancer costume..." I tempted him.

"You know that's offensive right?" He deadpanned.

I looked at him. I couldn't tell if he was joking or serious. I did know that I didn't want things to be strained between us.

"Fine, no costume. Just the entire trilogy of Aladdin and a smorgasbord of Indian food on the way if you stay."

"I'll stay...You know your house is gonna smell for a week." He teased, finally smiling.

"I have air fresheners." I smiled back.

Megan and J-Mike's mom Candace dropped off the boys 10 minutes after the food arrived. They turned the movie night into an Indian food challenge, with me recording them on my phone. I gladly did it if it meant EJ would at least try everything. When EJ said the Samosas were salty, J-Mike ask him if they were as salty as he was when he beat him in NBA2k. Richard and I both burst out laughing when EJ through one at him.

Halfway through the second movie, the boys got bored and decided to go to bed. Before they went upstairs, I text Ethan to make sure it was ok for them to post the video. He called me and said it was fine, although he didn't know I was watching the boys. After they went upstairs, Richard and I turned off the movie and started to clean up.

"So I wanted to ask you if you wanna go to Miami next week." I asked him. When he narrowed his eyes at me, I explained.

"Christian is playing at the Ultra Music Festival and wants me to come with my friends. I know it's last minute, but I'll love for you to come. It's going to be fun! And it might be good to get a break from everything." I over explained as he watched me cautiously. The movie went so well. Why was it tense between us now?

"How's Christian feel about you inviting me?" Richard asked.

"He doesn't care. In fact, he asked if you wanted to come."

Richard scoffed, and I looked at him, confused.

He cleared his throat. "This stays between us, alright?"

"Ok..." I said, concerned.

"I get the feeling he thinks there's something going on between us. He only asked because he wanted to see what you would say about inviting me."

"What makes you think that?"

"He called me, wanting to surprise you with something for your backyard."

"What? When?"

"Thursday."

"What did he say to you?"

"Nothing really... It's just how he came off."

"How did he come off?"

"Like he was your man and I was the hired help." He clarified.

"Fuck. Richard. I'm so sorry."

"It's good. I'm overcharging the fuck outta him anyway." Richard smiled. "But what you told me last week about y'all just dating... I don't think he sees it the same way."

I frowned. "Yeah. Thanks for letting me know."

Once he left, I went upstairs to check on the boys. When I heard them laughing and talking, I left them alone and went to my room. I lay in bed, thinking about my conversation with Dr. Pereira. Even though I hadn't reached out to Uriel about hooking up again, I knew whatever I decided he was fine with our arrangement. Christian on the other hand, even though he said he was fine with us just dating, I wasn't sure if that included me dating other people. Maybe I needed to tell him I was. I shuddered at the thought of his reaction. Christian could be understanding, but he was also emotional and volatile at times...

I took a deep breath and turned off the lights. No need worrying about it now. I was honest about not wanting a relationship  and my expectation of us not being exclusive or committed to one another. He agreed and I was going to believe that he was telling me the truth. I wasn't going to stress out over it; My perception had to be that it would all work out. If it didn't, I would deal with it then. 


Sunday, January 21, 2018

Independent

"Independent do you know what that mean?
Independent do you know what that mean?
She got to her own house
She got her own car
Two jobs work hard you a bad broad
If you ain't on sit down
If you ain't on sit down
If you ain't on sit down
If you ain't on sit down" Independent by Webbie

The next morning, my sore body protest just the thought of my boxing class, so I skipped it. Instead, I stayed in bed and called Christian back. He left me messages and texts the night before that I ignored. I knew I needed to talk to him, but part of me hoped he was too busy to answer. He answered on the third ring.

"Hey. Good morning." I forced out cheerfully.

"Is it a good morning?" Christian question.

"So far so good. How bout you?"

"I don't know. You've been hard to reach lately. Is there a reason for that?"

I flushed thinking about Uriel and the night before...

"No. Just busier than usual." I answered, casually.

"It has nothing to do with the interview Sammy posted?"

"No. It doesn't matter what she posts."

"It matters to me because it makes it seems like there is something going on between me and Keosha and that I don't have time for a relationship. I'm sorry I didn't give you a heads up about it."

"Christian, we're not in a committed relationship. You have nothing to be sorry about. I get it." I said firmly. I really wasn't upset if he was seeing someone else, especially after last night.

"I don't think you do." He started.

"So explain it to me."

"The way I portray myself in the media is not real. Letting the public believe whatever I want is how I keep a somewhat private live. I don't want you to see a video or hear something online and believe it. I need you to trust that what I tell you is the truth." He explained.

"I'll trust what you tell me unless you give me a reason not to." I said truthfully.

"Fair enough and I never will." Christian stated. "There's nothing going on with Keosha. As far as me not having time for a relationship, you already know I'll make time for you."

"Ok."

"So you really weren't upset about the interview?"

"Not the interview itself like Sammy intended, but I was definitely annoyed with you and Sammy being petty." I admitted.

"I wasn't trying to be petty though. I don't understand how she can dislike me when she doesn't know me." Christian argued.

"Sammy made me promise not to date Trevor before we got together. It's how she is: stubborn, unreasonable and petty. That's why I told you to ignore her. She will out petty you."

"I'm not petty. I was trying to give her some shine. Get her to change her opinion on me."

"She's not the one getting to know you. I am. My opinion is the only one that matters." I told him.

"So what's your opinion on me so far?" Christian asked me.

"Hmmm... You're super talented and charming, and extremely generous and handsome... Those kinda balance out your petty side..." I trailed off.

Christian chuckled at me. "Yo, I'm not petty!"

"Yes you are!" I laughed at him.



After my talk with Christian, I got up to get ready for work. When I saw Adil waiting for me, I knew it was bad news. He informed me that not only were we going to accelerate Paul Bolen's treatment like Dennison wanted, but he would be having his rehabilitation in the morning with Dr. Clayton from now on.

I didn't say anything negative about Adil's decision, but he must have been able to read the disdain on my face. He pointed out how since the closing shift was understaffed, moving clients around was for the best. He told me our main goal was to get our clients healthy and while we might not always agree, we had to work as a team to accomplish our goal.

As much as Adil changing the rehab plan and schedule sucked, it was harder telling Fallon about it. When I informed her later that evening, I could see her deflate and the disappointment etched on her face. I told her to stick to her gut, and this is what happened. It made me feel awful that I didn't know what else I should tell her.

Wednesday morning, Richard and his crew were coming over to start the slate patio. When Richard arrived, I had donuts and coffee already sat out for them before I got ready to leave to make up the boxing class I missed.

"Hey, do you know your roommate's gym schedule? I haven't seen Dominic in weeks." I asked him

"Eh, he's not my roommate anymore so I have no idea." Richard answered.

"What? What happened?" I asked him.

"Nothing happen. It was just time... We  needed to move on, get our own space, ya know what I mean?" He shrugged.

"I know exactly what you mean. I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T, do you know what that means?" I sang and did a little dance.

"Please stop." He smiled.

"Never!" I proclaimed before I headed out.

At the gym, I was happy to see Dominic was back. I mentioned how hard moving was so I understood why he hadn't been around the gym. His face twisted up momentarily before he left to the men's locker room. He didn't work out in his father's class so that was the last time I saw him. His reaction was so abrupt, it made me question Richard flimsy reason to why Dominic moved out.

When I got back home, Richard and his crew already started to dig up the yard where the patio would be. I showered and got ready for work, giving them a wave before I left. I wanted to press a little more about why Dominic moved, but I left it alone. I figured if either one wanted to talk to me about it, they would have. It wasn't my business, so I stayed out.


After I came home from work, I went outside and saw that the slate patio was done. I took a video and pictures of their work before sitting in one of my patio chairs. I checked my social media, my stomach doing little flops when I saw Uriel tagged me in a post of Instagram.

With everything else going on, I hadn't thought of my great escape or how Uriel taken it. I looked at the picture to discover my name was tagged with a number of people on an ad for the St. Patrick's Day parade this weekend. St. Patrick's Day was the end of next week, but apparently the parade would be the weekend before.

Intrigued by the post, I called Monica to talk about it. I filled her in on what Adil decided before bringing up the parade.

"I saw a post about the St. Patty's Day Parade. Are you going?"

"Every year since Mark Cuban decide to sponsor it." She confirmed.

"Sounds fun..."

"It's fun, if you like standing around drinking in the heat, or rain, or both, while random floats drive by." Monica said, unenthusiastically.

"Tell me how you really feel Monica."

"It's the truth! Then we do a bar crawl on Greenville... after we spent the whole day drinking. It's kinda offensive if you think about it: drinking to celebrate a saint?"

"But he's Irish."

"That's even worse Lily!"

"I'm joking." I laughed.

"Are you coming?"

"I don't know. Are you going to try to set me up with Uriel again?" I brought him up, seeing if he asked about me. Maybe he tagged me because he wanted me to see it and go...

"Urgh. Never again. That back fired on me. He's bringing a Mavs dancer with him just to piss me off."

A small part of me was a little offended he moved on to the next so fast, but I pushed it aside, reminding myself it was a one night stand. Why would he want to see me again? He probably tagged everyone in his generic post.

"Next time you try to set someone up, ask their permission first. It might go smoother." I said, lightly.

"Yeah sure." She brushed me off. "So are you coming or not? We already rented out an apartment with a wraparound balcony. Always plenty of food and drinks. I'll let you know the address if you wanna stop by."

"Really? You were just complaining like you had to be outside in the heat." I exclaimed.

"The balcony is just as bad!" She whined.

"I'm hanging with my friends this weekend and I have no idea what they wanna do." I said, politely.

"Let me know. You all are welcome to stop by."

"Will do. Bye Monica."


Thursday, Amber was still trying to get everyone on the same page of what we were doing. Mia was under the assumption it was a girls only weekend, which Dino had a problem with because she wanted to spend time with Jake on one of her rare off days from school and work. Sammy had a gig Saturday night she had to at least set the girls up at, Rocky only wanted to go out to eat so no bars, clubs or lounges and Gigi didn't care as long as she didn't have to drive. 

Amber saw the post of the parade on Instagram that Uriel tagged me in and asked me about it. I told her everything Monica told me and she came up with a perfect plan: the parade during the day with just us girls, food at wherever Rocky wanted to go after, and the bar crawl in Greenville that everyone, including boyfriends, could come to. Amber sent the text to everyone, letting them know it was the plan.

By Friday, Richard and his crew had the pergola done too. It looked amazing- even without the plants it gave me serious tropical vacation vibes. I absolutely loved it. I took videos and pictures and invited them out for a drink on Saturday to celebrate their hard work. They agreed and I told Richard I would send him the information once I had it.

Saturday morning, I woke up and started to get ready for the parade. I looked casual but cute in white four leaf clover tank, ripped skinny jeans, a black jacket and olive Ugg boots. I straighten my hair and place it in two twin top knots. I applied a metallic green smokey eye with a nude lip on my fully made up face. Loving my look, I took a few selfies with Justine as I waited for Forrest to pick me up. He was driving Rocky and me to the dart rail station by the parade where we were all meeting up.

"Lily's got your folding chair. Remember to rest." Forrest told Rocky as he dropped us off. "Blake and I will be at the end of the parade route. If you're ready to leave at anytime let me know."

"Ok." Rocky nodded, leaning over to kiss him goodbye.

"Don't try to do too much." He continued.

"I won't." Rocky said, giving me a look to help her out.

"I told Monica I had a preggo with me that might need a bedroom in the apartment they rented. Monica already reserved it for her so that's where we'll be." I assured Forrest.

"I don't need a damn bedroom. Let me live!" Rocky snapped, as she wobbled out the car. She pulled her white and green stripped shirt over her hips, scowling underneath her four leaf clover newsboy hat.

"Let me live!" I mimicked her as I hopped out the car. Forrest gave me a little grin as I grabbed the folding chair he got for Rocky and slung it on my back.

"But for real, I'm not leaving her side so you can relax. I'll call you when we're settled." I promised.

"Ok. Have fun."

We found Sammy and Sofia already waiting for us in their car. Sammy looked chic in a dark green romper and heels while Sofia wore a green sweater dress. Sammy and I greeted each other cordially, but Rocky's meaningful glance let me know she could tell something was off between us. I ignored it in favor of having a good time. Staci, Amber, Gigi and Mia arrived next, looking like they were ready to get the party started in Silly St. Patrick's Day shirts, green bows and hat, and make-up and hair flawless. We all took pictures and chatted as we waited for Jordan and Dino. Jordan showed up next, but when we were 30 minutes past out meeting time, Amber called Dino.

"She slept late. She's going to meet us for lunch instead." Amber informed us.

Staci looked concerned while Mia just rolled her eyes and headed for the crowd. It was still technically morning, but music thumped from speakers, drinks were everywhere and people were dancing and playing games along the route of the parade even though it was another hour before it started.

The original plan was to head to the apartment, hang until the parade started and make our way back to the street, but the girls were having too much fun dancing and hanging out with people in the crowd. I was too until Rocky requested her folding chair.

"Here. Sit. I'm going to round up the girls so we can go to the apartment." I told her.

20 minutes later, I found everyone but only Jordan, Gigi and Rocky wanted to go to the apartment. The apartment was only a 15 minute walk and I called Monica once we made it. Trent came down to retrieve us, and I gave him a warm smile before we headed up.

The apartment was filled with around 15-20 people, some I recognized from their Christmas party. As tall as Uriel was, I spotted him right away, talking to a leggy red head I was sure was his dancer. I ignored him and introduced my friends to Monica. Rocky and Ace were the topic of conversation with all the women, so I let her fill them in on how far along she was while I grabbed her all the non-alcoholic drink options available.

"Thirsty?" A deep voice I instantly recognized asked from behind me.

"Nope. That's your date!" I quipped before turning to face Uriel. He was wearing a long sleeve Mavericks collar t-shirt and relaxed, worn jeans that looked tailored to his tall, lean frame...

Fuck. Stupid Midori shots had me checking him out instead of ignoring him.

"My date?" He asked, lifting an eyebrow at me.

"Nothing. Excuse me." I said, nodding away his offer of help as I side stepped him.

"Lilac." He called after me.

I whipped my head around, glaring at him. "LILY."

"Right. It's the purple hat again."

"I'm wearing all green."

"No. You left your purple hat at my place-" he started.

"Just trash it." I instructed him before walking off.

I delivered the food and drinks to Rocky who was sitting in a reclining chair.

"Who was that?" Jordan asked me, nodding in Uriel's direction who now had the redhead back by his side.

"Nobody. He just wanted to know where I got the sparkling water." I lied.

We ended up watching the parade from the balcony. It wasn't as lively as the crowd on the street, but it was still fun. We even called Blake and Forrest to join us. I could tell Uriel and Forrest recognized each other on the balcony. Forrest gave me a questioning look while Uriel hid a smile behind a beer bottle when he saw Forrest's arm around Rocky.

When the parade ended, I asked Monica where they were meeting for the bar crawl.

"Right here. A party bus is taking us down Greenville." She told me.

"That's not technically a crawl."

"I don't crawl in Saint Laurent Lily." Monica clucked at me.

I laughed. "Alright. Maybe I'll see you later. I'll be crawling in my knock offs. Thanks for having us!" I said before we left.

We met up with the other girls, but since we already ate, we didn't feel like going out to eat. Amber was disappointed we were separating again, but Rocky solved that by saying we could all get ready and pregame at her house. We all planned to take an Uber to Greenville anyway so that worked out. I dropped by my house to let Justine outside, refill her food and water bowl and grab my clothes for the night before heading to Rocky's house. Once we got there, Forrest and Rocky retired to the bedroom, Jordan and Blake to the guest/nursery room and I took the couch as we all took a nap.

I woke up with enough time to hit a liquor store. When I got back, everyone was up and I made us drinks while Rocky sipped a decaffeinated green tea latte I got her from Starbucks. I turned on some music and we danced and sang as we got ready. I was working on my hair when Amber, Gigi, Mia and Staci arrived. I went into the living room to finish while they took the guest room.

I pulled a small section of my hair in a top knot but left the rest down in a half up half down style.  My make-up was more subtle, natural colors with a peach colored lipstick. I wore a camouflage sweatshirt dress and tan knee high sock boots. I was debating jewelry when Rocky lent me a black and gold choker.

"Gold hoops?" I suggested.

Rocky nodded, stretching on the couch. "That dress is too cute Jordan."

I nodded my agreement at Jordan's mint green asymmetrical hem dress.

"Thank you. Blake picked it out." Jordan beamed.

I smiled, suppressing my eye roll. She talked about Blake all the time now. It was cute in the beginning, but I was waiting for the engagement buzz to fade off. I looked up to see Rocky lost in thought.

"What's wrong?" I asked, concerned.

"Going out, getting drunk, I'll never have that again." She lamented.

"What? Yes you will. As soon as you pop him out. That weekend. Pump some milk and we're gone."

She smiled but shook her head. "No. Even if I did, I'll be out, thinking about Ace, wondering if he's ok, if he needs me, who's watching him. That freedom is gone knowing I have someone dependent on me."

"True but think at what your gaining: all those first, cuddles, that new baby smell..." Jordan added. "I absolutely can't wait to have a kid with Blake."

"And besides, when you had the freedom, you didn't like getting sloppy or childish anyway." I reminded Rocky.

"You're right but at least I had the choice."

Mia and Amber emerged from the guest room, both in mini skirts and drunkenly dancing, looking for more Whiskey.

"They all have kids besides Gigi. You still have the choice." I said.

Rocky shook her head at them, giving them a disgusted look. "You know what? I'm over going out and being drunk and childish. You have fun."

I giggled at her before we all got ready to leave. Staci and I joined Jordan and Blake in his car. Blake was graciously being designated driver for the evening. Once Amber's Uber arrived, we took off. I text Richard the address on the drive.

We got dropped off outside of some club on Greenville that Reggie, Jasmine's on and off boyfriend was spinning at. Once we got inside, Dino, Jake, Brandon, Malik, Collin, Taylor, Omar, Jocelyn and another girl I didn't recognize were a table. We sat at the reserved table next to it.

"There you are!" Mia exclaimed over the music at Dino. "You were able to get off of his dick long enough to hang out with us?"

Dino sent her a withering stare. "Don't take it out on me that my bother doesn't want you on his anymore. I told you what would happen!!!" Dino said loudly.

I totally pretended like I didn't hear any of their back and forth as I took a seat across from them and pulled out my phone. Richard said he was on the way, which was music to my ears. I just wanted to dance and have fun. Normally I would with Staci, but she was meeting up with a guy she met on Tinder at the bar. Amber dragged Mia to the dance floor with Gigi to diffuse the tension. I could have joined them but Mia's energy always put me off on her. Jordan had Blake, and Sammy would arrive soon but things were so awkward with her I didn't want to deal with it. Everyone else was cool, but Brandon seemed uncomfortable with my presence that I didn't really interact with anyone else so I anxiously waited for Richard and his crew.

I ordered 4 Jamison and ginger ale and green beers while I waited. By the time the waitress brought them back, Richard sent a text asking where we were. I walked towards the entrance until I saw him with 2 of the guys that helped finished my backyard. I waved them over before grabbing Richard's arm and leading him to the table.

"We match!" I pointed to his camo military style jacket.

"I see that. You look great." Richard smiled.

"Thanks! So do you!" When we got to the table, I made him take a picture with me.

"First round on me!" I told all of them, pointing out their drinks. "Cheers!"

"To what?" Richard asked in my ear.

"My backyard!" I cheered.

"That's work we don't wanna cheer for work." Bill shook his head.

"Alright, to being I-N-D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-T..."

"Do you know what that means!" Richard sang along with me before I burst out laughing. We all drank to that.

"What's so funny over there?" Jake asked us.

"I don't even know." Richard chuckled at me.

"Independence! Freedom!" I cheered.

"You got the wrong holiday Lily." Malik grinned at me.

"Oh no. Everyday is a holiday when you're not bogged down by bullshit... Or when you drink about a bottle of Midori by yourself." I exaggerated.

"A bottle? Are you ok?" Richard asked, concerned.

"Yes. I'm great. I need to dance it off." I wiggled in my chair.

"C'mon then." Richard downed his drink. He took mine, downed it too before holding out his hand for me.

We found a spot on the dance floor and started to dance. I was definitely doing the most with my dance moves, rubbing my body against his and singing along flirtatiously. When Low Life came on, I declared it me and Richard's song considering we were "camo'd all out" like the Weenknd sang. Richard recorded us singing along to the lyric together. We danced and sang until we were exhausted, so we headed back to the table, needing a rest.

When we got back to the table, I saw Sammy and Corey arrived. I gave Corey a wave and a smile as Sammy continued to play on her phone. I was surprised to see Dominic with Mia. She was twerking and grinding all over his lap like there was nobody else in the room. She had absolutely no shame, especially when Dino made it sound like he dumped her.

"You wanna get outta here?" Richard asked me.

I was surprised. He never came on to me so blatantly before. I mean, yeah, he had, but not like he really meant it. I could tell by his eyes he really wanted to leave. I thought it over briefly. He was fun, we had a great time together, and I've always found him attractive. Yeah, Bianca told me not to date him, but it wouldn't be dating. More like friends with benefits. I could use one of those and if it didn't work out, we weren't super close. I could cut him off, no problem.

"Yeah." I nodded. "Let's get out of here." I agreed.

I told Jordan I was going and she and Blake were ready to go too. I hugged them both goodbye before I said goodbye to everyone else. Sammy finally acknowledged me, giving me a stunned look for leaving with Richard. I disregarded her. Richard led me out of the club and I followed until I felt a tug on my arm. I turned to see Jake.

"Let me talk to you before you leave." He said in my ear.

I gave him a weird look but I motioned to Richard that I'll met him outside. I followed Jake to a quiet hallway that lead to the bathroom.

"Don't go home with Richard." He told me sternly.

"What!" I blushed hard, embarrassed that he knew what we were doing and outraged he thought he had a say on whether it would happen. "Seriously, what's wrong with you? Go Christian Grey your girlfriend!"

"Lily, I can't get into this with you right now. You know me. You don't know him. I'm telling you you don't wanna go there with him. " Jake urged me.

"Whatever Jake. Goodnight." I said, leaving. 

I didn't have time to think about the audacity of his demand. I was too busy trying to find Richard. When he was nowhere to be found, I pulled out my phone. I had a few missed texts but I started with Richard's.

Richard: Sorry Lily. I headed out. I'll talk to you soon. Get home safe.

Get home safe? The fuck? And now I couldn't go back into the club because then Jake would feel like he stopped me. Fuck!!!
Thankfully, Monica sent me the location of the Party bus. I gave her a call to see where they were at.

"Same place. We just parked on Greenville and have a party on the bus."

"Ok. Look out for me because I'm heading your way."

It was a few blocks away, but I hurried over, pretending I was talking on my phone the whole time- that made me feel safer all alone late at night on a crowded street.
When I saw the massive bus, music blaring, I picked up my pace towards it. Monica was waiting for me by the door.

"Lil!!!" She screamed, clearly intoxicated.

"MonMon!!!" I screamed back the moniker the WAGS gave her: short for Money Monica as they thought she was bougie. I was starting to see why. 

"I hate that nickname!" She wrinkled her nose up at me as we made our way past the bodies on the bus. We reached a seat next to Trent and she let me sit by him while she got comfortable in his lap. I tried my hardest to ignore the awareness through my body when I spotted Uriel across from us. I turned my body and head towards Monica and Trent.

"What is Lily short for?" Monica continued to yell at me even though it was unnecessary.

"Lilac." Trent teased me.

"Lillian. No fucking Lilac." I said, refusing to look at the originator of that stupid name.

"I love Lilacs. They're pretty." Another voice added. I looked up to see the same fucking redhead smiling over at us. She was standing in front of Uriel, who I couldn't help looking at now. Dark khakis with a moss green Henley made him look even more incredible; which was not helpful at all considering I knew how incredible he was without his clothes.

"So are Lilies." I dismissed her, turning my attention away again.

Monica gave an obvious eye roll and she asked me where I've been. I told her the club we went to and the type of music they were playing while out the corner of my eye I watched Uriel. He pulled redhead to him. When I saw their faces get close, I looked up and gazed at them. I was shocked when I saw Uriel returning my stare. He was hugged up close to her, whispering sweet nothings in her ear, but his eyes were locked on mine. I should have been offended for her or disgusted by his leer, but it was having the complete opposite effect on me...

Redhead pulled away, and that's when I tore my eyes from Uriel's to notice she was glaring at me.

"I'm leaving!" She hissed at Uriel before she stalked off.

"Oh no! Wait happened?" Monica asked in mock concern. "Is it pass her curfew?!?"

She missed the entire interaction- she only looked up when redhead left. Trent, on the other hand, shook his head at Uriel and me.

"You should go after her." I told Uriel.

"I'm where I want to be." He told me, sending me a smoldering look that had my body clenching in arousal. "You want anything?" He asked, suggestively.

"I don't know. Let me see what you have." I said boldly.

"The bar's up front!" Monica told me.

I got up and followed him to the front. Instead of going toward the mini bar set up, he led me to the stairs out the bus. He grabbed my hand, helping me down each one. The second my feet were on solid ground outside, he pushed me up against the bus and leaned against me. 

Once I felt the heat from his body pour into mine from where we touched, I groaned out loud. I couldn't help myself; I threw my arms around his neck, stood up on my tip toes and pulled his head down for a hungry kiss.

He kissed me back, briefly before pulling away.

"You want to come home with me?" He asked gravelly, his hands caressing the only skin I had exposed- the small gap between the top of my boots and the bottom of my dress.

"Yes..." I panted, trying to bring his lips back to mine.

"Are you going to spend the night this time? No sneaking out?" He continued, working me into more of a frenzy as one hand slid up my dress to grip my ass.

"Yes." I murmured, kissing his chest, neck cheek... Anywhere my lips could touch.

"What was that?" He said, pressing me against him as he thrust forward so I could feel how hard he was.

"Yes! I'll stay as long as you want me to!" I swore, my breathing erratic as my desire for him grew.

Uriel gave me a devastatingly sexy grin before pulling away completely. He grabbed my hand and said as he pulled me away, "Let's start with a night and go from there."

Monday, January 15, 2018

Cake by the Ocean

Mini-post

"Waste time with a masterpiece,
don't waste time with a masterpiece
You should be rolling with me, you should be rolling with me
You're a real life fantasy, you're a real life fantasy
But you're moving so carefully; let's start living dangerously
Talk to me, baby
I'm going blind from this sweet, sweet craving, whoa
Let's lose our minds and go fucking crazy
Ah ya ya ya ya I keep on hoping we'll eat cake by the ocean" Cake by the Ocean by DNCE

"I have a confession to make." Uriel told me as he led us into his condo. He lived only 20 minutes away from me. He did not live in the same residential area as me but he wasn't that far from the Shops of Legacy where I celebrated my birthday.

"What is it?" I asked, my eyes quickly examining his darkened living room. I could make out a matching living room set, glass coffee table and a huge plasma before turning back to face him.

"I don't have any cake." He said, taking long strides to the kitchen. He opened the refrigerator and searched inside. "I'm not big on sweets but I have Greek yogurt, fresh fruit and sweet potatoes. I might have a breakfast bar."

"Do you really think I came over here for cake?" I asked, hiding my nerves behind a smile.

He gave me a knowing look. "I was hoping not. Do you want a drink?"

"No. I'm good."

"Come here and tell me what you came over for." He suggested leaning against the counter in the kitchen, watching as I still stood in the doorway.

I took a deep breath before making my way over to him. "Do I really need to say it?" I asked, with fake bravado as I stood in front of him.

"Yes..." He said, grabbing my hand to pull me even closer. "We need to be on the same page." He took my purse from my hand and set it on the counter. His fingertips then traced the back of my hand and up my arms, sending tingles all over my body.

When his fingers reached my shoulder, he removed my jacket. The tingles intensified when he lifted my hand to his lips and followed the same path as his fingers with his mouth. I closed my eyes, enjoying the feel of his kisses on the back of my hand, around my wrist and up my forearm.

"Tell me what you want." He demanded, sucking the crook of my elbow.

My knees weakened and I blurted out, "I wanna fuck you."

A snicker escaped his lips and he turned his mouth away in an attempt to hide it. Humiliated by my outburst and his response, my eyes snapped open and I began to pull away.

"No. Don't." One of his arms snaked around my waist to hold me in place.

I fidgeted in his embrace. "Stop. We're definitely not on the same page if you think I'm a joke."

"You're not a joke." He said, caressing my back, soothingly. When I relaxed, he moved his mouth back to my arm. "I didn't expect that from you.." He explained between kisses.

"What were you expecting?" I asked, trying to keep my defenses up as his kisses moved to my shoulder.

"For you to tease me like you did on your birthday..." He said as he kissed the strap of my tank top. "Play coy like you did at the Lexus event..." He paused as he nipped at my neck. I couldn't help the shiver that ran through my body. "Or bludgeoned me into submission like you did earlier tonight. I never expected you to be frank about what you wanted." He finished before his tongue swirled on my neck.

    I groaned, in pleasure but also in acknowledgement of the truth in his words.

    "My birthday... Was the first birthday I didn't hear from my ex. We were best friends for 9 years and it took less than a year of dating to destroy that." He pulled back slightly but I continued. "I've been all over the place trying to deal with that and figure out what I want."

    When I finished, I met his eyes, mentally preparing myself for him to run for the hills after that over share. He didn't; instead, he peppered kisses along my jaw and asked,

    "Do you know what you want now?"

     I nodded. "For the most part."

    "Tell me again." He nibbed on my ear.

    I shivered and shook my head away from his mouth. "No way. Not doing that again."

    "I'll go first." He started, softly in my ear. "I wanna fuck you." He imitated me.

    I laughed and it released the tension inside me. I turned my head to brushed my lips against his. "Shut up and do it then." I teased against his lips.

    He smiled cockily then picked me up like I weighed nothing at all, throwing me over his shoulder.

    "What are you doing?" I squealed, a little disoriented as I noticed my purple hat fall off my head and unto the floor.

    "Exactly what you told me to do." He said, slapping me on the ass as he carried me to his bedroom. I've never been manhandled like this, but I was really turned on by it.

    He carried me straight to his gigantic California king size bed and dumped me on it. I sat up, my legs dangling off the edge of the bed. I began to undress, starting with my shoes and socks before he stopped me.

     "Wait. We need to talk before we go any further."

    I looked up at him, confused. "What? Why?" I asked.

    "We need to share our std status. I have my results from November I can show you. I'm all clean." He pulled his phone of his belt clip.

    "Oh!" I said, realization hitting me. "I'm not due for another test until June. My last check was clean but I can get tested again."

    He nodded. "We'll stick to condom safe activities."

    "Ok." I agreed, nodding as he began to disrobe.

    My eyes were glued to him as he removed his undershirt to reveal broad shoulders, cut biceps, and rippling abs. My breath caught as his slacks came off next, revealing his black briefs and lean, long legs. His body was incredible; he had not an ounce of fat on him.

    He walked away giving me a view if his tight ass in his briefs. I got my fill of watching him as he went into his beside dresser and pulled out a string of condoms. He came back to the foot of the bed, removed my tank top and bra before pushing me back on the bed. He pulled off my leggings and panties with one tug before climbing on the bed too.

    He moved on top of me, settling himself between my legs. His head lowered to my chest, kissing around my breasts, before sucking one of my nipples in his mouth. His tongue circled my nipple while his finger mimicked the motion on the other. When I groaned and ran my fingers through his hair, holding his mouth against me, he shook his head free and switched nipples.

    While he lavished my breasts with affection, he rubbed his pelvis into me. When I felt his erection growing thicker and harder against me, I gasped and looked at him, in awe.

    He pulled his lips away from my skin, sharing my gaze. "Don't worry. I'll go slow."

    "Kinda too late to go slow." I breathed, stroking his hair.

    "Never too late to slow down." He said, moving up my body. I sat up slightly to press my lips against his.

    We kissed, softly at first, until I slipped my tongue in his mouth, deepening the kiss. As we made out, his hand worked between our bodies until he stopped between my legs. He moved between rubbing my clitoris and slipping his finger inside me, driving me crazy.

    "Uriel..." I groaned, arching up from the bed, needing more contact.

    "Yes?" He asked, as he stroked inside me, grazing my spot and driving me crazy.

    I responded by wrapping my legs around his narrow waist, pulling him closer to demonstrate what I wanted. He indulged me for a moment, rubbing harder against my clitoris before he moved away.

    "Tell me what you want." Uriel told me.

    "You know..." I whimpered at the lost of contact between us.

    "I want to hear you say it again. Tell me." He repeated, sliding his fingers inside me. He brought me to the edge again, before he stopped.

    "Urgh, Uriel, fuck me." I cried out, thrusting up into him.

    "What's the magic word?" He asked, maddeningly calm as he gripped my hips, stilling me.

    "Now!" I demanded.

    "Wrong." He said, moving his finger back to my clitoris. I cried out as stroked me in tight circles, bringing me closer to the edge. When I thought I was finally there, he pulled away again.

    "Please Uriel. Please fuck me!" I begged, desperately.

    He pulled away, finally grabbing a condom and putting it on. He slid his hands under my ass, lifting my hips up as he thrust himself all the way inside of me. I let out a loud wail as he pushed as deep as he could, grinding against me before pulling all the way out.

    "Please!" I gasped, longing for release.

    "I told you we were going slow." He puffed, repeating the same motion, over and over again

    "Please, please, please!" I pleaded, tighten my legs around his hips in effort to get him to move faster.

    He let out a low groan, but kept up the excruciatingly slow pace. I laid back, tilting my hips up to his, focusing on how good he made my body feel. I tensed up as I slowly built towards an orgasm again.

    "Are you about to cum?" He asked me, his eyes barely open.

    I nodded my head frantically, pleasure rendering me speechless. As soon as I did, he pulled out of me.

    My sob of desperation turned into a scream when he pistoned inside me, giving me quick, shallow thrusts. It didn't take me long to finally come, and I screamed out as my body spasmed. His continued thrusting prolonged my orgasm until he came a short time after me. He held me tight to him, shuddering as he released. My body was still spasming when he pulled away.

    "I'm going to use the guest's bathroom to clean up. This bathroom is all yours." He said as he stood up.

    "Yeah, ok. Thanks." I panted. He left and once I caught my breath, I began to search for my clothes. I crawled to the end of the bed, scooped up my leggings and underwear tangled up together on the floor. My panties were soaked and totally unwearable. I disregarded them and put on my leggings. On shaky legs, I found my bra and tank top on the right side of the bed and I put those on too. Last, were my socks and shoes.

    I took a deep breath, contemplating how the hell I got out of here. I didn't know what would be worst; him kicking me out or him being nice and making awkward small talk. I grimaced at the thought of either.  I wasn't familiar with how this worked, but the best option seemed to avoid them both and sneak out. The only other time I had an one night stand, I was at my place and he snuck out when he thought I was sleep. Since Uriel was awake, I had to get out while he was in the bathroom.

    I slowly opened the door, wincing as the door hinges creaked softly. I wasn't sure which door was the bathroom and I saw no light coming from any of them. I didn't ponder on it long as I made a mad dash to the front room. I quickly grabbed my jacket and purse and raced out the door. I didn't want to wait for the elevator and headed down the stairs 2 at a time. By the time I got down, I was winded and the front security guard was watching me curiously, but I gave a little wave before I left out the side door. I didn't catch my breath again until I was in my car.

    On my way home, second thoughts crept into my mind about what I was doing with Christian and now Uriel. I knew sex with Uriel was a one night thing. We were on the same page of not wanting a relationship: No feelings, no attachments, just sex. I enjoyed the freedom of meaninglessness sex as mush as I liked dating Christian.

    I had some feelings of guilt when I thought about Christian. I convinced myself sleeping with Uriel was only the rebound I should have had before starting anything up with Christian. I also reminded myself of how neither one of us were ready for a relationship so technically, I was free to do whatever I wanted.

    I was able to push my doubt aside by the time I got home. I took a hot shower and went to bed. I feel asleep quickly, and slept soundly for the entire night.