Closer Than Cousins Ch. 01bySabledrake©
Author's Note: this story is a sequel to "The Neglected Son, Ch. 01-05," set eighteen years later. Feedback is always appreciated.
Swan luxuriated in the bath, chin deep in scented bubbles while the light strains of Vivaldi wafted through the air. Her long fawn-brown hair was pinned up in a bun and the only other part of her that could be seen, besides her head, was one foot resting on the edge of the deep, roomy tub.
It was a dancer's foot, a ballerina's foot, not really all that attractive unless it was encased in a pink satin slipper with little ribbons that tied in criss-crosses up to mid-calf. The toes were knotted, the bottoms bruised and callused.
Someone tapped on the door. "Swan? Are you in there?"
"Yes, Kit," she called back, dipping her foot back into the water. "Come in."
"Are you decent?"
She looked down at herself and saw not a bit of skin peeping out anywhere. "Yes."
The door opened and Kit's dark, tousled head stuck around the edge. His vivid turquoise eyes widened when he saw her. A scarlet blush climbed into his cheeks.
"You're in the tub!" he said.
"I'm covered. We used to take baths together all the time, when we were little."
"When we were like three." Kit, still red, looked everywhere but at her.
The bathroom, palatial with its double-sink vanity, separate shower stall, seating area with long white couch, and private curtained-off alcove for the toilet, gave him plenty to look at. It was all done in white marble, gilded chrome, and rich magenta. Roses covered the wallpaper and the oval rug on the white tile floor. The deep pink curtains were tied back from the frosted windows with hanks of gold braided cord.
It was one of Swan's favorite rooms in all of Pinewood. Only her bedroom, and the detached dance studio that used to be her mother's, gave her more pleasure.
"What's the matter?" she asked. "Goodness' sake, Kit ... we're cousins and we've lived together all our lives."
"I know," he said. "But we're not kids anymore, Swan. We're, you know, grown up."
She eyed him with impatience. "Come in or go out, but either way shut the door. You're letting in a draft."
He edged in. "Um, so, how was school?"
Swan reached for a loofah sponge on a long stick. "I'll be so glad when it's over. Only a few more weeks and then I'll be free. You're the lucky one."
"I don't know about lucky," Kit said as he sat on the far end of the couch. "It's no fun being sick all the time, missing out on everything, and having to put up with one tutor after another."
Uncle Chet said Kit had been born with a "weak constitution." Even now, at eighteen, he could still turn what would be a three-day cold to an ordinary person into six weeks' worth of walking pneumonia. Because he'd spent most of his life indoors, either coming down with something, sick with something, or recovering from something, he had a pale, lean sort of face.
Those eyes, though ... the color of tropical shallows off some exotic beach ... wow. Swan envied him those eyes. Hers were nice enough – large and limpid and as soulfully brown as those of a doe, fringed with sooty lashes – but his were really amazing.
He was smart, too. The tutors never lasted long. Uncle Chet always fired them as soon as he realized Kit knew more than they did. Even if he had been well enough to go to school, the other kids would have hated him for his good grades and picked on him for his lack of athletic ability.
Swan herself had almost been turned out of school more than once. The teachers said she didn't have the temperament or the attention span for hours of classroom lessons. She was a month and a half younger than Kit but she had learned to read almost a full year later, and never cared for spending so much time in Pinewood's library.
"Why would you want to go to school, anyway?" she asked, extending one leg to scrub it with the loofah. She might have been self-conscious about her feet, which bore the brunt of long effortful hours of ballet practice, but she was awfully pleased with her long, sculpted legs. Water and foam ran tickling down her thigh.
Kit, staring as if transfixed at her leg, didn't answer.
"You don't need to go to college, and you don't need to get a job," she added.
That much was certainly true. A host of family tragedies around the time they were born had left them with massive trust funds. Those same tragedies had also left them without a relative in the world except Uncle Chet and each other ... unless you counted Uncle Chet's mother. But she was strange, and had only visited twice that Swan could remember, so Swan didn't count her as part of the family.
"There's more to it than that," Kit said. "At least you've been able to get out and meet people."
"You mean obnoxious boys who only care about sports and cars? Or girls who are so spiteful and mean that you wouldn't believe it?" She switched legs.
He was bright red again, and shifting around on the couch like he was uncomfortable.
"If you need to pee, it's all right," Swan said.
"You're squirming. All flushed and shaky, too. You're not getting sick again, are you?"
"I don't need to pee and I'm not getting sick!" He wiped his hand over his brow. "Never mind. I should go and let you finish your bath."
She leaned forward, bubbles popping in soft crispy little kisses on her chest. Water sloshed back and forth, lapping at the sides of the tub. "Wash my back first?"
"Come on, Swan! I'm not even supposed to be in your room, let alone your bathroom. Mrs. Reilly would have a fit."
"Mrs. Reilly is an old frump," Swan said. "She's always telling me to put on more clothes." She mimicked the housekeeper's voice. "'Swan, a young lady your age should never go without a brassiere.' 'Swan, that skirt is much too short.' "
"She says it's not right, us spending so much time together. Especially now that we're not kids anymore. That it's ... inappropriate."
"She's not my mother, or yours. Now, are you going to wash my back, or not?"
"Okay." Kit got up and took the loofah-stick. He knelt at the edge of the bathtub and rubbed its soapy, scratchy surface against her back.
"Mm, that's nice," Swan said. "Harder. Anyway, was there something you wanted to talk to me about?"
"Yeah. Do you know Marianne Devereaux?" His voice sounded odd, almost strained.
"I do, but why?"
"Well ... Uncle Chet thinks I should ask her to the spring dance at the country club."
"What?" Swan sat up straight. The sudden movement knocked the loofah out of Kit's hand and it splashed into the water. She spun to face him, her rump squeaking on the tub's slick bottom. "Marianne? She's horrible. She's the most horrible girl I know."
Kit did not seem to have heard a word she'd said. His jaw hung slightly open and he looked like he was having trouble breathing. His wide-eyed gaze was fixed on her torso.
Swan glanced down at herself. She had reared up partway onto her knees at the shock of the very idea of Kit having anything to do with the likes of Marianne Devereaux, and was only sheathed in bubbles to the waist. The rest of her body, pert pink-tipped little breasts included, was out of the water and being revealed more and more each second as the foam coursed its way downward.
"Oh, man," Kit said.
"Stop it," Swan said, and threw a handful of bubbles at him. "You act like you've never seen a girl before."
"Not like this, I haven't. Not in real life. You're ..." He shook himself, and shame flooded his face. "Sorry. I'll go. I really better go." In getting to his feet, he stumbled on the bathmat and fell headlong into the tub.
There was a huge splash, and a tidal wave sluiced out onto the rose-patterned rug. Swan yelped in surprise and shied back from the splash. Kit thrashed his way upright, covered in bubbles and sputtering.
Swan burst into giggles. "Oh, poor Kit, look at you, you're soaked! I'll get you a towel."
She hopped out of the tub with a grace that made a mockery of what had just happened to her cousin. Kit pawed foam from his face. He stood up, grimacing and flinging drops from his fingertips. His shirt and pants were stuck to him in soggy, wrinkled folds.
"Oh," said Swan. "That's why you were squirming. You have a stiffy!"
Kit gaped at her. He sat down fast, sending up another tidal wave, and crossed his arms over his lap, hiding the prominent bulge that she had noticed. "Swan!"
"What? It's nothing to be ashamed of. I understand, now." She offered him a fluffy pink towel. "You saw me in the tub, and it turned you on."
"Don't be ... it isn't ... I didn't ..." He turned his face away. "Could you please put on a robe or something?"
"A robe?" She looked across at the full-length mirror mounted on the back of the door. Her nude body was shining-wet and rosy from the warm bath. Water and bubbles slowly ran down to form a puddle on the floor. More bubbles were caught and glimmering like jewels in her navel and on the sparse silkiness of her pubic hair.
"Please," he said, putting a hand over his eyes.
"There's nothing wrong with being naked," Swan protested. "I like to feel the air on my skin. And so you saw me and got excited, so what? You're an eighteen-year-old boy. It's a perfectly natural reaction."
"Would you please put something on?" he cried in a tone of real misery.
"All right, all right." She wrapped the towel snug around herself. "There. Better?"
Kit grimaced again, like it wasn't exactly an improvement to have her standing there in a towel, but he said, "Yeah. Thanks."
"You really should get dried off," Swan said, getting another towel for him. "If you catch another cold so soon after the last one, it'll be all my fault. Here, take those clothes off and give them to me."
"I'm not taking off my clothes," he said, still crouched in the tub. "Not with you here."
"Don't be silly. You saw me, didn't you?"
"Yeah, but ..."
"You can't go to your room like that. You'd leave a dripping trail all the way down the hall, and what if Mrs. Reilly saw you?"
"I can't go running down the hall in a towel, either."
"I do it all the time."
"Because of your stiffy?"
"Cripes, Swan!" he wailed. "Quit talking about it."
"I don't see why you're so embarrassed."
"Because you're here, and you're beautiful, and sexy, and naked!" Kit said in a sudden, startling outburst. "If that wasn't reason enough, I'm sitting in a full bathtub with all my clothes on. And if that wasn't enough, I've never been out with a girl in my whole life and I probably never will, because even if I do ask Marianne Devereaux to the dance, she wouldn't go with me. She'd laugh in my face and then tell everybody, and they'd all laugh at me and --"
He broke off in a coughing fit that turned him from red to an alarming shade of purple. Swan rushed to him, scared, and helped him out of the tub. She was sure he'd slip and she wouldn't be able to hold him, and he'd crack his head on the rim or break his neck, but seconds later he was standing on the bathmat, gasping for air and only batting feebly at her as she undid his shirt buttons.
"Hold still," she said. "Let me help."
She peeled the shirt off and threw it into the corner. It smacked to the tiles and lay in a sodden heap. He stood there shivering. His undershirt followed, but when she moved to undo his pants, Kit came back to life and pushed her hands away.
"Fine," she said, stepping back. "You do it."
"Can't you just go in the other room for a minute?"
"You've got to get over this ... this nakedophobia."
Despite his evident distress, he smiled. "That's not a real word."
"I don't care. You still have to get over it."
Kit ran his fingers through his wet hair. "Look, Swan, this is ... this is crazy. You're my cousin. I can't be undressing in your bathroom with you standing right here. I shouldn't have been in here in the first place while you were in the tub."
"I didn't mind."
"That's part of the problem."
"Swan, look," he said, wiping his face with the towel and then meeting her eyes with those amazing turquoise ones. "There's something you need to understand about ... well, about guys. If you let a guy come into your bathroom like this, he's going to get ... ideas. He's going to have thoughts. He can't help it. That's just the way guys are. And sometimes, if a girl is pretty enough, and he really likes her, then it doesn't matter if she's his cousin. If she's practically like his sister. He still has those thoughts and ideas, even though he knows it's wrong."
"You mean ideas about sex," Swan said. "That's why you had a stiffy."
"So you see what I mean? I wasn't thinking about you as my cousin. I was thinking about you as a girl."
"I am a girl."
"Damn it, Swan, don't you get it? I'm stuck in this house all the time with nobody around but Mrs. Reilly and the maids, and they're old and ugly. You're the only real girl I ever see. And now that we're not kids anymore, it's ... sometimes I wish you weren't my cousin at all!"
"Kit, you're making too big a deal out of this," Swan said. "And you are going to catch cold. I'll go in the other room if that's what you want. Or, here! I'll go to your room and bring you back some dry clothes. How's that? Then you won't have to panic that I might see your penis."
He choked. "Don't say that!"
"What would you rather I called it?"
"I'd rather you didn't talk about it at all."
"It isn't like I've never seen one before, you know. I've been to lots of museums, and we have a Greek statue right out there in the garden."
"Please just go get my clothes?" Kit begged.
Swan tossed him the other towel, picking it up from where she'd dropped it when she hurried to help him out of the tub. With the first one still wrapped around her, she went out into her bedroom. Like the bathroom, it was spacious and airy and done in shades of white, rose, and gold. An authentic Degas hung on one wall, and framed posters from famous international ballet companies hung on the others.
Hanging her towel on a chair, she got a pair of panties from her drawer. They were so sheer and wispy that it really was like wearing none at all, so she didn't see why it should make such a big deal to Mrs. Reilly whether she wore them or not.
She crossed to the closet, rummaged, and found a summery little sleeveless dress in a floral print. It had an elasticized bodice that hugged her small breasts and supported them without the necessity of one of those hateful, binding bras, and it had a breezy skirt that fluttered high around her thighs.
It occurred to her that she'd better ask Kit what he wanted her to bring, and she pushed the bathroom door open without bothering to knock.
An alarming sight met her eyes. He had removed his pants and underwear – they joined his other clothes in that sodden heap – but instead of swaddling himself in the towel and waiting for her to come back, Kit had fallen to his knees on the rug and was panting harshly through clenched teeth.
Her first thought was that he was sick after all. Then she saw what he was doing, what his hands were doing, and Swan blinked in astonishment. She could see his penis after all, and it most undoubtedly was a stiffy indeed.
One of his hands was pressed firmly to the base of his stomach, splayed with fingers around the root of his penis. The springy coils of dark pubic hair stuck up around his fingers. His other hand was curled around the rigid length and worked rapidly up and down.
Kit's eyes were squeezed shut, and his brow was furrowed, but Swan knew that these were not signs of pain or illness. She tipped her head to the side and watched him masturbate. She'd never seen anything like it before. It was certainly nothing like the modest marble endowment of the Greek statue in the garden. It was, in fact, quite large and interestingly shaped.
And it was ... nice, really. Watching him like that. A pleasant warmth tingled through her, centering in her breasts and between her legs. Her nipples pushed hard against the nubby elasticized fabric, the pressure and friction making her very aware of them.
Funny how she'd never much thought about this kind of thing before. There had been a few boys at school who'd asked her out, and she had even gone on dates with a few of them, but their pawing and their slobbery kisses had only annoyed her. They talked about passion and love, but passion and love were what she equated with dancing. That soaring, uplifting thrill as the music began ... that was passion.
Except, feeling her own pulse and breathing quicken as Kit's did, she realized that this was similar. This was almost the same as dancing.
Kit uttered a drawn-out groan, and pumped his hand harder and faster. His penis lurched and twitched, and thick jets of creamy fluid shot from the end of it. These jets splattered all over the damp towel she'd given him.
He fell forward, bracing himself on the hand that had been pressed to his belly, and hung his head, breathing heavily. His other hand continued to rub and squeeze in a slowing rhythm.
Swan was uncomfortably aware of how tight and binding her panties felt. Again, it was strange that such a little nothing piece of fabric could be so much in the way. Moving with supple stealth, she raised her skirt and slipped the panties down her legs, then kicked them away into her bedroom.
Without them, she was more conscious than she'd ever been of the naughtiness of being bare beneath her skirt. Her labia felt plump and tender, and when she moved her hips she felt a delicious sliding sensation as they rubbed against her clitoris.
She raised her skirt again, just enough to allow her fingertips to play gently over her pubic hair. Her flesh was the same, her own ... familiar ... and yet at the same time it was somehow new. As if she'd never experienced her body in quite this way before.
At that moment, Kit, his breathing still labored, raised his head and shook himself, as if unable to believe what he'd done. He grabbed for the towel, flipped an unstained part of it over the evidence, and shot a furtive glance at the door to make sure it was still closed.
But of course, it wasn't. Swan stood right there, nipples erect and skirt bunched up, her fingers only just in the process of sinking into her moist heat.
He froze, still on his knees, penis dangling spent between his thighs. She saw a succession of emotions flicker across his face. Disbelief, shame, lust, mortification, fear, desire.
Swan met his gaze and did not say a word. She stepped her legs a bit wider apart and rocked her hips toward him, so that he had a clear view of what her hand was doing. With the other, she tugged down the top of her dress and cupped a breast, gently teasing her nipple with thumb and forefinger.
Kit's throat and mouth worked. He licked his lips and tried again to speak. Before he could, Swan shook her head silently at him.
As she continued caressing herself, a sweetly melting tremble threatened to undo her balance. Still not taking her gaze from Kit, she sank to the floor in the doorway, a few yards from where he remained spellbound on the bathroom rug. She sat leaning against the jamb with her knees up and her thighs braced wide apart, so that he could see everything as her fingers stroked the soft pink folds of flesh.
And she could see him ... could see his penis rising again, lengthening, turning stiff and hard.
She made the first sound she had since peeking through the bathroom door, a breathy little cry, and Kit echoed it.
"Swan ..." he whispered.
"Oh, Kit ... Kit, it's so nice," she whispered back.
"We really shouldn't ..."
"Ssh," she hissed. "I'm about ... oh, there!"
Closing her eyes and biting her lip, she sank her first two fingers deep inside. There was no hymen to interfere; one of her ballet instructors had told her that most dancers lost that early on through the exertion and degree of their movements. The walls of her vagina clenched and clasped at her fingers.