Oyster Creek Ch. 11bySoebek110©
Daniel tucked into the English breakfast in front of him with something approaching ravenous hunger. It was early; at least, most people in the hotel clearly felt it was early. He was needed in the store by seven, and so at a quarter-past six he now found himself in the hotel restaurant, alone but for the cook who prepared the eggs. Others would start making their way down soon, he was sure, but for the moment blissful quiet surrounded him.
He was just shovelling another mouthful of hotel-cooked scrambled egg into his mouth when his phone rang. Digging into his pocket, he pulled out the small device and answered the call.
"Hello?" he said, swallowing the food clogging up his mouth.
"Am I disturbing your breakfast, Dan?" Jenny chirped from the other end of the line.
He laughed, sitting back in his chair. "You are, but I'll survive."
"Well, I'll make this quick then," she giggled. "I need you to go and see a sculptor today, if that's alright? I'm needed here to set up the store, so you'll have to do this on my behalf."
"Is this to arrange the selling of his wares?"
"Her wares, Dan. But yes, it is. I didn't get around to seeing her yesterday, but I've heard that she's quite good and it might be a mutually beneficial arrangement to get her craft in the store."
"Any particular rules or guidelines you want me to stick to?"
"Not really. I mean, try and let us make a profit, and if she really doesn't want to sell us her sculptures then don't press the issue. I don't want to make enemies."
Daniel nodded. "Sounds reasonable enough. You got the address?"
"I do indeed, Dan. I'll text it through to you in a minute. I gave her a call last night; she's expecting you at eight o'clock."
"Good thing I agreed to this, then!" he laughed.
"It is. But I'd have bullied you into going, no matter what," she responded with an amused lilt to her voice. "Anyway, I best get going. Need to head to the store and get started. See you this afternoon?"
"And hopefully I'll come bringing good news. See you then, Jenny."
Daniel climbed from the cab, tipping the driver, and watched the car drive off. He was getting sick of cabs; every day he seemed to travel in them. If nothing else, it cost a small fortune in tips and fares.
Still, there's nothing I can do about that now, he sighed to himself, and then turned to check the address he had been sent to.
The house was of a decent size, surrounded by a small lawn of neatly-trimmed grass, but beyond it lay thick woodland that obviously did not belong to the owner of the property. Out here on the edge of Oyster Creek the houses grew far more distant from one another, interspersed between trees and grassland that leant the air a much more rural feel.
Fresh white paint adorned the walls, and a path led to the front door, but it was to the small building that had been attached to the side that his attention was drawn. With a flat roof and large glass windows it gave every impression of being a studio, and Daniel's suspicions were proven correct as he stepped onto the property.
A sign stood in front of it, an arrow painted towards the door that led into that addition to the property, and he guessed that the sculptor did not want potential customers knocking on the front door of the house by accident.
Reaching the studio, he took a moment to read the sign: 'Jill Leung Studios - please knock if you have an appointment.'
But what of potential customers that don't have an appointment booked? Daniel guessed it was a polite way of telling them to fuck off. He chuckled to himself.
He reached the door and pressed the buzzer, and a few moments later it opened. A woman stood there, her white apron covered in grey plaster dust, and regarded him warmly.
"Daniel Porter-Michaels?" she asked, reaching out to shake his hand.
He glanced down to make sure her palm was free of plaster before returning the motion. "Yes. Jill Leung?"
"That's me," she grinned, and Daniel took a moment to look her over.
She was Asian, or at least of Asian descent - though he'd guessed as much by her name on the sign - and beautiful for it. He placed her in her late twenties, Her eyes were a resonant deep brown, and her brown hair was tied up in a ponytail. Whilst the apron hid her figure somewhat he could still tell that she was slender but not skinny, and her breasts were generously proportioned even if not quite "large". From her accent, he placed her as being from California, although he was the first to admit he couldn't quite place American voices just yet.
"Come in then," she said, stepping aside and waving him through.
Daniel moved into the studio, glancing around as he did so. The place practically glowed with light through the windows on the ceiling, which he guessed was perfect for an artist, and the floor was cluttered with myriad piles of mess. Like the other artists he'd known back home in England, clearly Jill was not obsessed with tidiness.
The place was clean, though, barring the odd spatter of plaster on the edge of a table or the slate floor, and he took note of the assorted crafting implements scattered about the place. It seemed from the way her tools were arranged around a particular lump of some sort of stone that Jill had been in the middle of something when he knocked.
"Did I interrupt you?" he said as she stepped past him to the sink.
"To a degree, but don't worry about it," she smiled in return, turning on the tap and scrubbing her hands clean. "I was expecting you, since your friend called last night."
Daniel nodded and waited for her to finish. After drying her hands, Jill reached for the knot on the back of her apron, and pulled the garment from her body. He watched as she did so, noticing the blue jeans and the simple white t-shirt that she wore underneath. She definitely had a lovely figure.
"Well, what is it I can do for you?" she said after hanging up the apron. "Are you here to look at some of my sculptures?"
Daniel smiled. "In a manner of speaking, yes."
She looked at him quizzically for a moment, then waved him to a table in the corner. He sat, and she brought over a jug of water and moved to sit opposite.
"I wonder if you've heard of the Oyster Creek General Store?" he said at last, after pouring himself a drink.
Jill nodded, reaching for her ponytail as she spoke. "I have. Although, I admit, I've never been inside. Doesn't really strike me as my sort of shop. Why?"
"Well, your misgivings about the place are entirely accurate. It was a dive." He smiled, then took a swig of water. "Until recently, that is."
The Asian-American beauty paused, her hands on the tie that held her hair in place. "Oh?"
"I'm part of a large European company, and we actually own the Oyster Creek General Store, although nobody around here knows that." And it's technically not true, either. "I was sent over here to make it... profitable again, so to speak. The idea that myself and the woman who runs it have settled on is to turn the shop into a sort of gallery for all the talented local craftspeople to display their wares."
"A gallery, huh? So you want to know if you can sell my sculptures, I guess?" She shook her hair free of the ponytail, letting it cascade around her shoulders, before placing the hair tie on the table.
Daniel nodded. "That's the plan. I was hoping we might be able to come to some sort of arrangement that suits us both."
Jill chewed the side of her cheek as she looked around, thought written on her lovely face. After a moment, she turned back to Daniel. "Tell me more about the arrangement. What have you agreed with the other craftspeople from around here?"
Daniel spread his palms. "I'm going to be honest, I wasn't the one responsible for agreeing those deals, so I'm not entirely sure what they entail. I can assume that they're based on solid business acumen and the desire for a fruitful partnership, however, so I'll do the same here."
"And?" she grinned. "You won't impress me with superfluous business talk, Mr. Porter-Michaels."
Daniel laughed. "Fair enough. Well, how much do you charge for your sculptures? I can see they're of a high standard."
"If business-talk fails, try flattery," she winked, although from her amused expression it was clear she was only teasing. Then she motioned around the gallery. "My pieces range from $500 to $3,000, depending on how long I spend on them. Some can take days, even weeks, to get right."
"Then I'll make this suggestion, Jill: if you sell us the sculptures at slightly below cost, we'll put a markup on them of, say, 20%?"
"Below cost? So, for less money than I make now?" she replied, her brow furrowing slightly.
Daniel nodded. "Yes, for slightly less money. If we bought them from you at the price you were selling now there'd be nothing in it for us; customers would simply come to your gallery. A partnership has to be beneficial to both parties."
"I already sell them as cheaply as I can, Mr. Porter-Michaels. I can't afford to go any cheaper."
"Please, call me Dan. Listen, I'm not here to browbeat or bully you or generally be a dick. I'm here because I genuinely believe in the store I am helping to create, and that your sculptures will fit into it perfectly. Tell me, Jill, how long do you spend entertaining customers?"
She paused a moment, working it out in her head. "Probably three or four times a week."
"And how long does it take per customer?"
"Probably an hour or so when they're actually here, but I have to prepare the place for their arrival, too."
"And do they always buy a sculpture?"
Jill sighed. "Not always, no. Often they leave without purchasing any of my work."
"Then that's how we can help, Jill. You won't have to deal with clients anymore. You can simply get on with doing what you love, and we will take care of selling them. And on top of saving you time, displaying them in a store in the centre of town will generate much more interest, too."
She seemed to consider that a moment. "You make a good point, Dan."
"Thank you," he said. "But really, it's an obvious one. Look, think it over if you like. The store's opening is tomorrow, but your sculptures don't have to be there if you need more time to think it through."
"It's opening tomorrow?" she said, surprised. "You've left this visit late."
Daniel laughed. "I wasn't the one who arranged the opening date, although I admit I rather forced my partner's hand on the issue."
Jill smiled pleasantly back at him, then went silent. After a few moments, she nodded. "Alright, let's give this a trial run."
"A trial run?"
"Yeh, you can take a few of my sculptures and see how it goes. I assume I get paid when you get paid?"
Daniel nodded. "That's the plan. When the item gets sold we take our cut and then give you the rest. We can't afford to buy all the stock outright, and in a market like art it's not practical, either."
"Shall we see what you want then?" the Asian-American beauty grinned, standing up. She seemed to have grown rather fond of the idea in the past few minutes.
Daniel followed her as she showed him around the gallery. Her work took on many different forms, from some more abstract sculptures that he couldn't quite work out, to some very detailed pieces that even he could plainly understand. She was clearly an exceptionally talented woman.
As it was, he didn't have the greatest eye for art, but he was aware of that and allowed Jill to select the pieces. Whilst ostensibly he was supposed to be picking out the best sculptures for the store, Jill was the one doing the selecting.
"I like this one particularly," she said, lifting a sculpture made of some smooth, white stone. "I'm almost sad to see it go."
Daniel stepped closer to inspect it. The piece depicted the naked torso of a well-toned man reclining. The detail was exquisite, and he could certainly see a market. Even in stone, the man was good-looking.
"I can see why," he laughed. "Though couldn't you just make another?"
Jill smiled mischievously. "I based this one on an old flame. He modelled the pose for me, and without someone doing the same it would be almost impossible to replicate."
"You use models then?" he asked, somewhat surprised.
"I do. Though not for my more abstract works, as I'm sure you can tell. But for pieces like this, I either need a model or a very vivid recollection to do my vision justice. Tell me, Dan, have you ever modelled before?"
He looked at her with a mixture of surprise and flattery. "Me? No. I've never even considered it."
"You should," she said, eyeing him up and down. "You're attractive. You seem to have a nice body. There are plenty of artists who would love to have someone like you model for them."
"I might be attractive but I'm not a fashion model," he laughed in response.
She wagged her finger teasingly. "You don't need to be. Besides, fashion models look great wearing fancy clothes on a catwalk... not quite so good when you transfer their likeness to stone. No, someone with your looks would be perfect." She paused a moment before laughing sweetly. "Perhaps I should make it a condition of selling my sculptures in your store."
Daniel wasn't sure if she was serious or not. If she was, he supposed he'd do it. He wasn't embarrassed about the way he looked, and if that was a requirement of securing her talents for the Oyster Creek General Store then he'd go ahead with it, but at the same time the incessant teasing from Jenny that such an agreement would likely provoke make him wince.
"Really?" was all he could say.
Jill laughed. "I'm considering it! But no, not really. If you're embarrassed by such an idea I won't insist upon it. It'd be no fun at all, then." The last sentence was said with a sparkle in her brown eyes.
"Well, tell me what isn't fun about seeing a hot man taking his clothes off for you?" she grinned. "Sculpting his likeness gives me an excuse to ogle him for hours at a time."
Daniel chuckled. "I suppose I can see the appeal of that. Well, if you want to, I'll do it. I don't mind, really. It might be fun."
"Good," she said, a mischievous smile on her face. "And I guarantee it'll be fun."
Daniel let those words sink in a moment, allowing him to revel in their undercurrent. Then he spoke again.
"So, do you have any more sculptures to show me?" he said, glancing around. They'd covered most of pieces in the section of the studio set aside as a gallery.
"Not really, no," she said, although she sounded slightly hesitant. She glanced towards a curtained area at the back that Daniel had largely ignored - presuming it led back into her house - and his curiosity was piqued.
He cocked his head. "Not really?"
She looked at him a moment, narrowing her eyes as if she was making a decision, and then a wicked smile grew on her face. "Well, I do have some more, but you must promise to keep them to yourself. They're not for the store. Not in a million years."
"Not for the store?" He followed her as she moved towards the curtain. What the hell could she be hiding back here?
"They're my... erotic collection."
Daniel paused as she reached for the curtain. He raised an eyebrow. "Your erotic collection?"
The grin that spread across her face set filthy thoughts racing through Daniel's mind, and he suddenly couldn't wait to see what lay behind the curtain. Still wearing that mischievous smile, Jill pulled open the curtain and waved him through. He stepped past her.
Daniel looked round the small room, and his breath caught. The sculptures were not so much erotic as... explicit. He scanned the walls, taking in the sheer numbers of sculptures, and was impressed.
Dozens of pieces sat on shelves, depicting men and women, women and women, men and men. All sorts of combinations and positions seemed to have been explored, and each figure had been sculpted down to the very last detail. In front of him he could see a woman being pleasured by two toned men; on the other side of the room a couple were fucking doggystyle.
"Very nice..." he murmured, still taking in the sight.
He heard Jill giggle beside him, and realised she had moved to stand at his side. "I'm glad you like them."
"Would you consider selling them?"
"I already do. But in your store? No. I mean, no offence, but these are very personal. I sell them anonymously over the internet so people can't trace them back to me. There's only a handful of people who know I make these, and now you're one of them."
She laughed. "And so you should be."
Pausing to scan the room in awe another time, Daniel blew out his cheeks. "There's so much... variety. I'm impressed at your imagination, Jill."
The sculptor shrugged with a slightly embarrassed smile. "I get the ideas from fantasies I have." She paused a moment before speaking again. "Although I admit, sometimes I like to use my memories instead."
"Memories?" he said, turning back to her.
Her smile grew mischievous once more as she stared at him. "Have you further considered my offer to model, by any chance?"
"What is it you're implying, Jill?"
She stepped closer to him then, a glimmer seeming to cross her brown eyes. Daniel's cock twitched as he gazed at the Asian-American beauty.
"Well, there's a particular idea I've had for a while, but I just can't seem to get it right. I think I might need to... put it into practice."
His breathing quickened as she spoke, his body growing hot as the sexual undercurrent of their conversation ramped up. "And what is this idea?"
"A woman and a man fucking, Dan," she murmured. "She would be riding him, her legs kneeling at his sides. One of his hands would be on the back of her head, pulling her in for a kiss, whilst the other would be cupping a breast."
"That does sound very hot."
"It does. But it's very hard to get right from imagination alone."
"Perhaps we could do something about that," he said, stepping towards her so that their bodies almost touched.
Her mouth parted slightly, and she exhaled shakily. Clearly this talk was getting her worked up, too. "Perhaps we could," she said softly.
He leaned down slowly, and she did not pull away, their eye contact never breaking. And as his lips touched hers, she pressed herself against him with a sharp intake of breath, returning his kiss with sudden intensity. The kiss quickly grew hungry and insistent, and Jill moaned into his mouth as his arms encircled her waist. Crushing the beautiful woman against him, Daniel enjoyed the passion of the moment.
One of Jill's hands moved to press against his chest, and the other slipped to his sides, stroking round to his back then down to his ass. There she grasped the solid muscle, giggling as he groaned into their kiss, before a finger hooked underneath the waistband of his jeans.
She broke the kiss, her brown eyes shimmering as a mischievous smile twisted the corner of her lips, and suddenly both her hands were on his belt, unbuckling the leather and pulling it loose. Daniel took the opportunity to explore his new lover's body, too, his own fingers slipping beneath her white top and feeling her trim stomach beneath his touch.
Soon, Jill had unclasped his belt, tugging it free and undoing the top button of his pants. There, her fingers found his fly, and she slid his jeans down as she slowly sank to her knees.
Daniel groaned as the Asian-American beauty pressed her palm against his rapidly-hardening cock through his underwear, then caught his breath as she hooked that underwear over his length. A satisfied grin seemed to cross her face at the sight of his member standing proud in front of her, and she parted her lips with a contented sigh.
"Yes, this will certainly help... fuel my artwork." Her voice was low and sultry, and Daniel looked on with anticipation.