Come visit for a weekend, she offered in her e-mail. It'll do you some good to get away for a bit. The way you've been working so hard for so long with so little time off, you definitely need to get away for a while.
I had been thinking of taking a day off, creating a three-day weekend so I could try to relax a little more. It would take some planning so I could shift some of my normal duties, but it was definitely worth trying. But what surprised me most about this was the person making the offer: my ex-girlfriend.
Fortunately, we did not have a bad break-up. More than anything else, once we left college, the distance between us caused the relationship to end. Kim and I were definitely still friends, and still relatively close despite the three years and seven hundred miles which separated us. The Internet certainly helped, as we both maintained online blogs and could follow each other's lives that way, plus we traded occasional e-mails and used Skype and Windows Live Messenger to talk or chat in real time. We still sent each other occasional trinkets, and gifts were always sent for a birthday or for the holidays.
But I knew that it would be hard to be around her again, that I would want to hold her close and kiss her forehead but probably not be able to do so because we no longer had a true relationship, only a good solid friendship. Still, the more I thought about it, the more I was convinced that the positives would greatly outweigh the negatives, and in the morning, I sent back a response which Kim would see when she awoke:
I'll be arriving next Friday night.
I left the office at Noon, swinging by Quiznos for lunch before heading to the airport. Two flights later, I was just heartbeats away from seeing Kim again.
There was a sizeable crowd at the exit of the Secure Area, so I was thankful that Kim had suggested meeting elsewhere. As I made my way toward the Ground Transportation area, I noted more than a few couples reuniting, embracing warmly, holding hands as they strolled through the terminal. It saddened me a little, for I was certain that I would not be able to do any of that with Kim, that I would not be able to show any affection for her even though she was still a very special person to me.
I turned my head toward the familiar voice and stopped in my tracks. Her smile was just as beautiful as always, her face radiant as she looked up at me with happiness in her eyes.
The hug was wonderful, yet it was also quite bittersweet, for I was certain that it would be the last time I would be able to truly touch her until our farewell hug on Monday.
Despite the crowded restaurant, the late dinner was wonderful and was made even better by the company. To actually see Kim again with my own eyes and not via a Webcam or an online photo made the trip more than worthwhile. The way we chattered, one would think that we were still in college together, still in a warm, loving relationship. Yet there was that hesitance between us, that sense that we were both holding something back. Even as we headed to her apartment, it was present, almost tangible, as if a brick wall had been erected between us as she drove.
I was quite impressed with her new apartment. The building was old, but the apartment itself had been renovated just before she had moved in several months earlier. While a few unopened boxes were still evident, she had certainly transformed the large wood-dominated space into her own home, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere where she could relax and unwind after a long day in the lab.
As the evening drew to a close, I stood and stretched, giving a deep sigh of resignation. "All I need is a blanket and a pillow," I said, "and the couch will work for the night."
Kim gave me a thoughtful look, as if appraising me for the first time. "Are you sure?" she asked.
"Well, I guess it's up to you."
"Well, I was hoping to share the bed with you again."
I purposely waited and tried to keep the elation out of my voice. "That'd be great."
Still, it was awkward as Kim slipped under the covers beside me. She still wore actual pajamas with the button-down shirt, the kind I had once enjoyed slowly unbuttoning in the morning or during the night to slowly reveal her body to me in the opening stages of our foreplay, and that thought saddened me, for I had been invited into her bed, but I still sensed that invisible wall between us.
"I'm glad you're here," she whispered in the darkness.
"So am I," I responded honestly, even though being so close to her was actually somewhat painful.
As usual, Kim fell asleep first, and I watched her in the dim light from the street lamp near the window. I listened to her regular, slow breathing, remembering the many times I had guarded her like this late at night, gently caressing her as she slept peacefully beside me. On this occasion, however, I cried, silent tears wetting the pillow.
I awoke Saturday morning to the wonderful feel of a very familiar body against me.
During the night, we had apparently closed the distance between us. In our sleep, we had embraced, and just as the daylight illuminated her bedroom, so had our proximity illuminated my hopes.
Kim could almost certainly sleep through an air raid, so I was not surprised that she still slumbered against me. I wondered what she was thinking, what she was dreaming. I wondered if she was even aware of my presence, of my arm draped over her, of my breath warming her face.
How many mornings had we awoken in such a position? How many mornings had we awoken in such a position with neither of us wearing any clothes?
At last, she began to stir, but not quite awaken. I knew that she would need coffee to truly become conscious, so I carefully disengaged from her and left her alone, gazing upon her sleeping form one last time before leaving the bedroom.
The French press had changed, but the selection had not: Starbucks whole bean coffee in various flavors stood at the ready. I picked a flavor at random, ground the beans, and made use of the boiling water tap. Four minutes later, the coffee was ready.
Right on cue, Kim appeared in the small kitchen, an appreciative smile on her face. Nothing was initially said as she savored the hot brew, and I watched her closely, wanting to reach out to her again to touch her, wanting to go stand behind her to massage her shoulders as the coffee worked its magic from within her.
"It's been a while since anyone made me coffee first thing in the morning," she commented slowly, her eyes opening a little more as the caffeine began to affect her.
"It's been a while since I've made coffee for anyone other than myself first thing in the morning," I noted, then instantly regretted having said it. But, to my relief, Kim's smile widened a bit as she took another sip of what she for years had affectionately referred to as "Liquid Life."
Saturday was spent in the city. We had brunch at a recently-opened restaurant one of her colleagues had suggested, then headed to a museum to see the new exhibit of Japanese woodcut prints from the 1800s. While neither us of knew much about art in general, virtually everything related to Japan fascinated us, and we both found the exhibit to be quite interesting.
As we left the main exhibit and began to tour the rest of the museum, something compelled me, and before I realized what I had done, I had taken Kim's hand in mine. She gave my hand a gentle squeeze, but she did not retract her hand. For a moment, our eyes met, and I recognized that she had a need as well, that she was slowly tearing down her side of the brick wall. I must have been subconsciously doing the same, or else I would never have reached for her hand, but in that moment, with a few strangers passing us headed into or out of the main exhibit, I felt incredibly close to my former girlfriend, almost in the same way as when she and I had been truly dating in college and in the short period afterward before the distance had brought our relationship to a premature end.
As we toured the rest of the museum, we occasionally held hands, and we sometimes briefly touched each other chastely. More and more often, our eyes met, and a warm smile was shared. The wall was definitely coming down; the only question was when the last of the rubble would be cleared out of the way.
After an early dinner and a movie, we headed back to Kim's apartment. Throughout the day, there had been a growing intimacy between us -- always chaste, but definitely growing. It was as if the first twenty-four hours together had constituted a "rediscovery" period, and as we entered her apartment once again, it somehow just felt different.
We were soon on the couch, with Kim in my lap as I held her close. It took a while, but eventually, the chaste caresses were not enough.
For the first time in several years, I kissed my ex-girlfriend.
It was as if the several years had never happened. It was as if our relationship had never ended. It was the perfect ending to the day, and while I hoped that something more might happen, I was perfectly content with simply kissing and touching if that was all Kim wanted to do.
That was indeed all she wanted to do, and we did it for a long, long time before it was finally time to retire to the bedroom for the night.
I was a little surprised when she stood beside the bed in the darkness, the dim light from the nearby street lamp allowing me to watch as my former girlfriend slowly unbuttoned her pajama shirt. "Massage me?" she requested softly as she bared her breasts to me.
I was definitely not about to refuse. As she lay on her stomach on the bed, I straddled her topless form, my hands working their magic on her once again. She had fallen asleep long before I finally ended the massage with my signature kiss to her upper spine, and as I settled beside her with an arm draped across her back, I realized that I was indeed more relaxed than I had been in months, that simply being in Kim's presence had been the relief I needed from the stresses and the rapid pace of my work life.
For the first time in at least several weeks, I drifted into slumber with an actual smile across my lips.
Sunday morning began differently than I had anticipated.
Kim was still topless, and I always slept without a shirt, so when I awoke to her settling upon me, I began to stir. When my mind realized that her bare chest was pressing against my bare chest, the last remnants of slumber dissipated rapidly as my arms encircled her.
Tucking her hair back behind her ear, my ex-girlfriend dipped her head to kiss me. Without a doubt, the brick wall no longer existed between us, and I responded to her gentle forwardness.
Almost the entire morning was spent in Kim's bed. There were times when we cuddled and chatted quietly, and there were times when we fell silent and slowly strengthened the renewed intimacy which was developing between us.
When hunger finally forced us from the bed, we both remained topless as Kim made coffee and heated small personal pepperoni pizzas for lunch. As we ate, I kept thinking of the many times in college, either in her apartment or in mine, when we would be topless or naked, sharing a meal after having shared ourselves.
"Just like old times," Kim commented with a smile.
"Yeah," I agreed. "It definitely is."
The afternoon was largely spent outdoors, strolling through one park or another. Much of the time, we held hands if we were walking, or had an arm around each other if we had stopped to admire the scenery around a lake or watch a squirrel passing by.
Dinner was light: a pair of gourmet salads from the grocery store a few blocks from Kim's apartment. She leaned into my chest and I held her close as we watched Pleasantville, and when the film ended, she used the remote to turn off the television and the DVD player before leaning back against my chest once more.
The growing intimacy of the weekend together had emboldened me, and soon my hands moved upward from there they had been resting against her stomach. Even before my hands had cupped and gently squeezed her breasts, I heard and felt Kim sigh contentedly, arching her back a little. Sitting between my legs, she rubbed my thighs, scratching gently with her painted fingernails.
Fondling her breasts for the first time in several years brought back many, many memories. I remembered the first time we had kissed, as we stood in my old dorm room, standing behind her, my hands gliding up to her chest, and when she had not instantly rebuffed me, kissing the top of her head, and soon kissing her lips as my hands balanced the gentle weight of each breast. I recalled being in the campus library together, suddenly backing her into one of the many stacks of books and briefly fondling her chest as I kissed her, just to say that I had done it. I thought of the many times I had used her breasts for leverage while making love to her from behind...
My arousal hardened as I fondled her chest once more, and I knew that she was becoming aroused as well from the subtle change in her breathing. The long separation and the many miles which had kept us apart for so long faded away as the familiarity of our intimacy reunited us. This was a moment I had thought about for a long, long time, and in a way, it was hard to believe that at last the moment was -- quite literally -- at hand.
When Kim unbuttoned her jeans and slipped a hand underneath the denim, that was when I knew that this was certainly something we both wanted. As she whimpered softly and writhed against me, I kissed her cheek and the side of her neck as my hands focused on her breasts, initially from outside her clothes and then from underneath her shirt.
"I'd love to hear you cum," I whispered into her ear.
Underneath the shirt, I continued to fondle my former girlfriend as she slipped off the jeans and the thong, and then she leaned heavily against me to spread her legs a bit wider, allowing better access for both hands. She was shameless in her masturbation, probing herself while simultaneously rubbing her clitoris. Her motions against me were wonderful, her gasps as her self-pleasure increased were melodic, and as she rocked faster and faster against her own hands, as I lifted each breast from her bra and rolled each nipple between my fingers, her sounds began to increase in volume.
"Cum for me, Kim. Cum for me again."
I kept encouraging her, pinching her nipples more firmly to give her a little erotic pain to help her toward the climax.
Her voice rang out in a long, high-pitched squeal which reminded me of the actresses in much of Japanese pornography. Then she fell silent for a moment, her body rigid yet trembling while I continued to fondle her breasts until at last she sagged against me, breathing fast and hard as if she had just finished running a full marathon. As she slowly recovered, I finally withdrew my hands from beneath her shirt and hugged her closely from behind, occasionally kissing her cheek and gently sucking the lobe of her ear.
The scent of Kim's passion was quite evident in the air, her musk just as intoxicating as the performance she had just completed. I remained quite aroused myself, part of me wanting to move her forward onto her hands and knees so that I could undress and plunge into her body once again, but I did not want to appear to be too eager to embed myself within her.
However, I did not have an opportunity to bend her forward and once again stake my claim to her body, for Kim extricated herself from my tender grasp and began to work at my belt. Her eyes were bright as she smiled at me, her hands undressing me with great familiarity. It clearly did not matter to her that she wore only shirt and bra and socks; she clearly had no shame in presenting herself like that to me as she rendered me to a similar state of semi-dress, freeing my throbbing, dripping manhood.
Kim had not lost her abilities. I knew that she had briefly dated three men (and a woman) during our time apart, so perhaps that was how she had kept "in practice" with her fellatio skills. Multiple times, she brought me to the brink of orgasm and then expertly backed off while continuing to suckle and stroke my lengthy anatomy. While typically I was as silent as a mouse during any sexual activity, I could not contain myself, groaning with lust and with need, biting my lower lip to keep from making too much noise and alerting any neighbors who might be home of the carnal activities taking place in Kim's apartment.
And then, I could no longer contain myself. My lust -- my love -- erupted into Kim's hungry mouth, each strong surge accompanied by a loud growl of primal need finally being sated.
She remained on her knees for some time, softly sucking, prolonging the pleasure. Our eyes met and locked as I tenderly ran my fingers through her hair, amazed at what had just taken place after all this time apart.
That night, it was my turn to fall asleep during a massage. I did not sleep for long initially, for I awoke momentarily as my topless former girlfriend settled onto me, her hands clenching around mine, her bare breasts pressing into my bare back, and I soon drifted back into slumber feeling truly complete for the first time since our relationship had ended.
During the night, I awoke to find that Kim was no longer sleeping on me. Beside me, she was watching me in the dim light of the street lamp, a hand gently caressing me with great fondness.
There was something in her eyes, something naughty and wicked which I had not expected, especially in the middle of the night.
That "something" declared that it was time: time to finally claim her as mine once again, time to burrow into her body and fuse with her once more.
I fully awakened as I kissed her, and her hand nudged me to my back before slipping into my sweatpants to ensure I was fully prepared to dip into her once again. No words were said -- no words were needed -- as she undressed me underneath the covers. The only communication was that of our hearts as I undressed her and rolled her to her back.
She gave herself to me -- fully, completely, with no reservations. She guided me inside her and kept me there for a long time, clinging to me as I tried to reach her soul, crying out softly into the night as the bed announced our lovemaking to the neighbors below us.
Of all the times we had made love, that night it was the most heartfelt, most soul-moving experience of my life.
Monday morning came far too early in my opinion. Kim and I were both still quite tired from making love in the middle of the night, but not so tired that we could sleep until midday. We lingered in her bed for a long time, embracing each other in our nudity, reliving the intimacy of our former relationship, before finally rising and preparing for my departure.
The drive to the airport was a sad one. Neither of us had any regrets about the weekend visit, but it had given our relationship-turned-friendship a new dimension which could never be ignored.
Kim cried into me as I held her at the airport. I lingered with her as long as I possibly could before I gave her one final kiss to her forehead.
"I still love you, you know," she confessed, the tears still streaming down her cheeks.
"I know, and I still love you. I'm willing to try again if you are. I'd love for this to work, even though we're living about seven hundred miles apart."
She smiled. "I'd like that."
With a final hug, I went to stand in line at Security, and as I headed toward the gate, I kept looking back, seeing a tearful girlfriend smiling with joy.