Second First Time
Catherine was on the bed, facing her right side. She was staring into the hypnotic lights of the highest buildings of the city. The suite of this hotel was like a glass cage on the top of the city. From the bed, she could see everything--the buildings, the starry sky-- but no one could see her and she felt like a goddess.
Thrilled, but somehow relaxed by the magic surroundings, Catherine waited for him… Above… far above all fears.
She felt Vincent before she heard his soft steps.
He waited for a moment, delighting his eyes in the magic view in front of him. Catherine’s body was covered by a thin blanket from hips to feet, surrounded by lights which illuminated her naked chest. Her back was to him, but it made her even more desirable because of what he could not see.
He knew her body - every pore, every scar; he had learned to cherish it with passion and care in two years of marriage. Despite that, this felt new… and he was willing to accept it as a gift. This time was meant to be different.
She was waiting for his touch, and it beat at her like an electric charge. His hands followed her shoulder, moving to her flank. His mouth was on her neck, caressing her skin with too-light kisses, making her close her eyes to the view, distracted by the even more enthralling dance of lights inside her. When he descended to touch her thighs, his chest hair casually touched her back, making her shiver violently. Without notice, she turned slightly to him.
When she opened her eyes, there were two new blue lights among those of the city, and she asked, “Why do I love you so much?”
Vincent’s eyes closed slightly, a smile on his lips, and he lowered his mouth to kiss hers. Their lips found the old ways to delight them both so easily. His furred nose caressed her cheek, looking for her ear.
“As much as I love thou?”
His eyes were back in front of her, his head dropped to one side. So many memories filled her. Vincent meant life and safety, a voice in the darkness saying: “You’re safe”. The sweet rising of a Nocturne.
Even after the ecstasy, his head was so close to her neck that he didn’t notice when their afterglow vanished, still feeling her unique essence from her hair.
“Thank you” she whispered.
His nose in her nape answered: You’re welcome.
The sunlight woke her at dawn. It filled the room with a soft pink light long before it had reached the rest of the world. It was so beautiful that, for a moment, she thought she was in heaven.
“Good morning, my love,” his voice said, quietly.
If something was omitted to make it perfect, it would be the mixing of thrill and awe she felt at the view of his naked body, painted golden by sunlight. She just stared at him, speechless.
“You look like an angel in paradise,” he said, and his eyes held just truth.
He moved slowly, their lips meeting in a sensuous, languorous, morning kiss. Then, his eyes, full of awe, parted from hers to absorb the beauty around them. Here and there were rainbows, everything touched by the morning's light.
“It seems heaven, surely. How did you get to know about it?”
It was guileless curiosity. She scanned his eyes and as he noticed her move, his muscles tightened, instinctively.
“Is there something wrong?”
“Not so…” she would tell him; he was over this entire male-pride thing, however. “There was my first time.”
He did not let his body flinch, or the growl vibrate through his chest. His brain rationalized the information quickly, making it less emotional, less hurting.
“It’s silly, but it has been bothering me that it was with the wrong person… so I came here and called you… and you came…”
Just then, she noticed his distancing. He wasn’t with her anymore, but deep inside himself… in that place where he went when he felt overwhelmed, for her not to suffer.
“Are you all right, Vincent?” She sound worried. “Oh, God, I mustn’t have said it…”
“No, it’s all right,” he quickly recovered from his stone-like coldness. “It is proof of your confidence in me,” although perhaps you overestimated my strength. It was difficult now not to see shadows of that other man on every corner; he just did not look.
“It was very selfish of me.”
“No,” perhaps a little naive, “it’s a wonderful place, as I have said. Did you… enjoy it the… first time…?”
“In fact… I… kind of chose to…”
He was almost back, his head dropping to one side.
“I decided it was time to lose my virginity… rather soon; actually, too soon to desire it really… so I chose the right guy, the right time…”
He frowned slightly, trying to understand. That was not the way “making love” happened in his world.
“Anyway, there was pain and awkwardness, and it happened too quickly. The best thing I remember about that night is this marvelous place, the feeling of being so far away from everything. In fact, I barely remember the man… as if my first time had been with the place itself… And I love it. I will always be grateful to him for showing me this place.”
He looked at her, and this time… this time there was nothing but sadness. It had never occurred to him to deepen in such a subject - her being with other men - that painful it was; but he must ask. To think that her first time had not been as beautiful as his had been… He let his body fall on the bed, heavily.
“Would you…?” He turned his gaze to her, amazed at her sudden shyness. “Could you forgive me?”
In a moment, his arms pressed her to his chest.
“What there is to forgive, my love?” Vincent asked.
She opened her mouth, then shook her head. He rubbed her back until she found the strength to try to explain herself.
“For everything: for… that man… for bringing you to this place…”
“You weren’t a vestal virgin, I knew that already… and you had no reason to wait for me.”
“If I had known…”
“You couldn’t. Let it be. Some way, it made part of you what you are… of the woman I love.”
When she looked up to him, he couldn’t but kiss her; she barely responded. Her eyes were full of awe, and there was a question in them.
“How can you be so forgiving, so easily?”
“I guess I just love you.”