In the morning glow, the chilly dampness clung to Sylvie as she quietly walked from the balcony past the bed and into the warm bathroom. The mirrors were fogged with steam, the entire room an oasis now as she shut the door and dimmed the lights, Radiohead. Languid luxury in the week, a lover still in bed asleep, one rousing now, but lazy, as his message said. Yes, Jean-Paul wanted her, again. A surge of lust jolted her as she thought of him, thought of his urgent yet thorough attentions the day before. Sylvie let the jacket fall from her shoulders, and she stepped into the water.
Hot baths on cool mornings. Sylvie’s brief moment of guilt at the feigned illness she reported to her work faded from importance, the everyday tossed aside. In days past, it was Todd who had reached for her sleepily, pulling her back as the alarm continued to ring in the morning, kissing her for the full thirty seconds until it stopped at last. It was Todd who had wanted her. Mornings lingering in bed, then the discovery of days, wandering through woods, along water, the quiet, the passion. Desire seemed so far away as he now only turned from her, from his thief of sleep, and then pouted later at her waning interest in him. Sylvie reassured him at first, encouraged his kisses with her own, led him back to her. And yet, the willingness of his warmth had seemed to vanish, sleep and distractions offered as excuses–walls to their closeness, ever-growing.
Sylvie’s feet and ankles were red as she jumped back out of the water–too hot. She waited as the water ran and stepped in again to the deep tub, and lowered herself carefully, gasping as her skin tightened, then expanded. Lower, the heat aroused her tenderness, awakened her senses in the hinoki. Calm, calm, and then not.
Sylvie leaned back into the tub, her hair wet now on the bottom. She leaned back farther and let herself go underwater. Submerged, free, yearning to swim farther, to float, to wash away. Her hair flew, then stuck to her shoulders as she stood and reached for the towel, the warmth lulling her back toward bed as she dried.
Todd was still fast asleep when Sylvie crept back into the room. Her warm flesh swelled as she climbed back into bed. Todd grasped his pillow and murmured, then rolled closer to the side of the bed.
Sylvie reached for the phone, flipped it open and began to text.
Yes, 1pm. Yes, your room, #504. Yes.
She shut the phone, and lay back. Todd seemed to move farther away as she began to extend her hand toward him, her breathing slowed, desire mounting in anticipation of Jean-Paul. Todd, Todd, she insisted. She drew her hand back and spread her legs wide, letting her fingers trace the edges of her labia, now soaking as she thought of the night, wished for his tongue in place of her fingers. Her fingers were his tongue now, now teasing, now spreading her lips apart, sucking her clit until her legs shook, her juices now soaking her hair, her sheets, her back arched, her lust irresistible, insatiable, irrelevant to Todd.
Sylvie moaned gently.
Todd coughed, and she startled. Caught. Would he…?
Not caught. Todd pulled the pillow over his head, snored, stayed.
Sylvie felt her eyes glisten, but only a little now. Only a little, as she grabbed her phone and walked to the closet.
“Yes, this,” she said to herself, grabbing the red dress, the stockings, the box of lingerie scented with flower petals, the jewelry box.
Sylvie walked back into the bathroom, still warm, still steaming with the water she had forgotten to drain.
I can be there at 11am.
Sylvie finished drying her hair and carefully adjusted her elaborate ivory bra, the panty, the garter. She rolled each stocking carefully up each leg and fastened each of the six fasteners, one by one. Yes, these earrings, this perfume, this shade of lipstick. She looked in the mirror, then back into the bedroom. Todd had not moved.
Sylvie looked back at the mirror, then slid into the dress
and out the door.