A Sexual Haunting


"So why not turn it around a bit? Now, our doctor isn't unwilling. Far from it. He just doesn't have any experience at all. Which makes the first bedroom scene more than a little hilarious."

"But what happens with the doctor's fiance?"

"Ah," Mark smiled. "Well, she was a cold one to start out with, anyway. Which accounts for a lot of our doctor's inexperience. Not her fault, really. We follow her, as well. Turns out she is a lesbian and ends up falling in love with her maid. So everyone can live happily ever after."

She laughed out loud, startling several birds from the path. They flew up into the trees, their shrill voices scolding her. "Oh, that's outrageous! You're going to make some people's heads blow up when they hear about it."

"Oh, I'm sure they will," he said cheerfully, sounding not at all worried about the prospect. "In fact, I..." he trailed off, slowing down. "Look,he said suddenly, his voice dropping to a whisper. "Look there." His hand gripped her shoulder gently, bringing her to a halt.

Following his gaze, she peered into the underbrush. For a moment she didn't see it, so well did the dappled coat blend into the sun-speckled bushes. But then she caught a glimpse of dark, liquid eyes. She blinked, and the fawn came into focus. A light brownish-tan, dotted with white spots, it looked back at her curiously from less than twenty feet away.

"Oh," she breathed. "It's beautiful." She wanted to walk over to it, to feel the bristly fur under her fingers.

Pattering footsteps sounded behind them, and Bree turned in time to see a little girl, no more than three years old, pounding up the path. Her flustered parents were in hot pursuit. Mark bent and picked her up, ignoring the churning legs. Before she could protest, he was speaking quietly to her, pointing out the deer. Brianna watched with a smile as the girl's eyes grew round in wonder.

"Ooh," she said. Pretty!" Her chubby arms stretched out. "I want to see!"

"No, sweetheart," Mark said gently. "The fawn's mommy won't like that. And she'll smash you flatter than a bug." He tweaked her nose, making her laugh. "Look, there she is. See her?" He pointed out the larger deer which had joined her child. For a moment, both animals stared at them. Then with a pair of leaping bounds, they vanished into the forest.

"Emily, you naughty girl," said the exasperated mother, who had finally caught up to them. "I told you to stay with me and your daddy. Thank you," she said, as Mark transferred the squirming child to her arms. "I'm glad you caught her. I wish I had half the energy she does. What were you pointing out to her?"

"A doe and her fawn," he said. "Right over there, less than ten yards away."

"Really?" she said. She turned to her child. "Did you see the fawn and her mommy, Emily?" The girl nodded, her head bouncing excitedly. "All right. Now, let's wait for Daddy, okay?"


After leaving the relieved parents and the chattering Emily behind, they continued on the path. As they reached a break in the trees, Brianna reached out and took Mark's hand, guiding him to a stone bench as they neared a scenic overlook. From the top of a small cliff, they could see down to the lake, or look north across it to the low rolling hills of southern Ontario. In the distance, they could see the beach, and a swarming mass of people running into and out of the water, their faint shouts barely audible at this distance.

She sighed and stretched her legs out on the wood chips which covered the ground, inhaling the deep, resinous scent. "This is so nice," she said, feeling deeply content. She leaned against Mark, frowning when he flinched away. "What's wrong?"

"Well," he said, "It's hot and I'm sweating and probably starting to stink a bit. And I don't want to act like..." he trailed off, his face growing redder than the warm day would seem to call for.

"You don't want to act like you're trying to take advantage of me?" she asked. "Don't be a dope, Mark. I was the one who was trying to get close to you. Not the other way round. Just because I'm a virgin doesn't mean I don't like to be touched and held. Or kissed," she said, hoping her invitation was plain enough to drill through his thick head.

"Well," he said, "In that case..." he leaned toward her, lowering his head as she raised hers to meet him. His lips touched hers tentatively, withdrew, then came back. Warm and firm, they caressed her mouth. Eager, but not demanding, he accepted what she chose to offer.

Oh, she smiled to herself. He's good. Unlike too many of her former boyfriends, he didn't try to force himself on her. There was no frenzied groping, no sad pleas for her to take off her shirt, to give him a hand-job, to do this, do that, until she thought she'd scream in frustration. She opened her mouth, the invitation plain, and sighed happily as his tongue came in to explore. She met it with her own, and they gently tangled for a time.

She scooted closer to him, wanting to feel his warm skin, the strong muscles of his arms. The angle was awkward, until Mark solved the impasse by simply picking her up and setting her in his lap.

"Oh," she purred, batting her eyelashes at him winsomely. "I do so love a big, strong man." She let her voice deepen seductively. His hands were at her waist, and she moved them higher, under the hem of her shirt, until he could caress her ribcage. She shivered as his fingers softly stroked her skin. As she shifted in his lap, she feel the evidence of his arousal, and the thought pleased her. Never one to hide her light under a bushel, she was proud she could make him want her. She threaded her fingers through his black hair, kissing him again. Inside the confines of her sports bra, her breasts were growing hot and flushed, and a slow ache began in her nipples. She knew they had contracted, the dark areolae growing hard and erect.

"Well," an unwelcome voice brayed, causing her to jerk away from Mark. "Look who we have here. Sweet little Brianna, the original cock-tease herself. Don't get too excited, my man," the tall young man sneered as he swaggered towards them. 'She'll leave you with a case of blue balls and dump you when you ask for more."

She leaped to her feet, her face flaming with impotent fury, as Lance Barksdale stopped a few feet away. His vacuously handsome face was twisted in a spiteful smirk. At his shoulder stood a girl she vaguely remembered from high school, dressed in yoga pants and a crop-top. Brandi? Mandi? Sandi? She couldn't recall anything about her other than the fact she dotted her name with little pink hearts.

Before she could launch into a blistering retort, Mark reached out and set his hand on her wrist. Startled, she looked down. He seemed completely relaxed, but one eyelid twitched with the merest hint of a wink.

He turned his head to Lance. "Hi,he said calmly. "I'm Mark Watford. You are..."

"Lance. Lance Barksdale. Let me give you some advice," he spat, casting a venomous look at Brianna. "You're wasting your time with her. She'll lead you on by your balls, but as soon as you ask for a little bit more, her legs close tighter than a vise. Nothing but a goddamn cock-tease, and that's the truth of it."

"Wow," Mark said. "Thanks. I appreciate it. The only reason I came up with her today was that I was hoping she would strip off her clothes and spread her legs right in the middle of the park, so we could screw like a couple of horny monkeys. But you've opened my eyes." As he continued, his voice became ever more sarcastic, until it was all but openly mocking. "Why, Lord?" he said, standing and raising his voice until he was shouting at the heavens, his eyes filled with a mad hilarity. "Why do you torment me so? I don't want to spend time with a lovely, intelligent woman. I just want something I can shove my dick into."

He lowered his face until he was staring at Lance with open contempt. "You were dating her? And you dumped her because she wouldn't have sex with you?" When Lance nodded confusedly, he shook his head. "And I bet you were super patient with her. Gave her all the time she needed to make a decision before you stormed off in a huff.

"You're an idiot." With one hand he gripped Brianna's. The other opened in front of him, the fingers curled as if he held something precious. "You held her heart in the palm of your hand. And threw it in the mud like it was trash. Go away."

Lance's face flushed an ugly red, and he clenched his fists. "You can't just sit there and insult me like this!"

"No, no." Mark held up his hands placatingly. "There must be a mistake. I wasn't insulting you. I was describing you. Huge difference. I apologize for the confusion." His face grew concerned. "Or do you have a learning disability? If you like, I could write down some of the bigger words so you can look them up later."

"You stupid little cocksucker. I'm going to kick your ass."

Mark shrugged, unconcerned. "You can try. I am sure your girlfriend here will be hella impressed." He glanced over at the girl, who had been watching the exchange with her mouth open. "I'm sorry. We haven't been introduced. I'm Mark." He smiled winningly. She smiled back, momentarily transforming her vacantly pretty face into a beautiful one. At her side, Lance fumed but didn't interrupt.

"I'm Candace. But people call me Candi. Because I'm so sweet," she giggled.

He nodded. "I'm sure you are." His voice was gentle. He sounded, Brianna realized, just like he had when he was talking to the little girl earlier. "So, is Lance making a good impression on you? Insulting an old girlfriend, picking fights? Is that what you look for in a man?"

She wrinkled her brow in thought, something Brianna was fairly sure she was unused to.

"Well, Lance usually treats me nice. He buys me stuff."

"And do you think he would keep that up if you decided to not have sex with him? Maybe he would start treating you like he is treating Brianna here."

Candi opened her mouth and closed it. Looking, Brianna thought with more than a touch of spite, like a landed fish. She looked back and forth between Lance and Mark. "Well..."

"Come on, baby," Lance said. He put his hand on her shoulder, steering her away. "Let's not spend any time with these losers. Let's go to the concession stand. I'll buy you a snow-cone." He gave them both a hate-filled glance, then walked away, Candi drifting along in his wake.

When they had passed a curve and were out of sight, Mark sank back onto the bench. Brianna was surprised to see his hands were shaking, whether from fear or anger she could not tell. She sat down beside him.

"Hey," she said softly. "Are you okay?"

"Yeah," he said woodenly. "I'm just fine. Some jerk comes up and insults a woman I care about and all I can do is beat him up with words." The tendons in his wrists stood out as he clenched his fists in impotent anger.

Brianna's heart warmed as the import of his words sank in, suddenly seeing deep into what made Mark the way he was. She leaned over and kissed his cheek.

"That's for not being a dumb, testosterone-fueled moron," she said. "If you had gotten into a fight with that jerk over me, I would have walked off and let the two of you pound each other into paste."

"What?" Mark's lips quirked in a ghost of a smile. "You wouldn't have swooned into my arms, overcome with passion by my virile masculinity?"

"No." She straddled his waist, leaning down to kiss him again, then got off the bench. "Come on. Time's a-wastin', and if we stay here much longer I might just give you a case of those blue balls Lance warned you about."

Hand in hand, they slowly walked off down the path, the sunlight gilding their bodies in a golden sheen.


Over the next few weeks, Brianna found herself sliding slowly, helplessly in love with Mark. Her thoughts turned toward him when she was at work, and when she arrived home, her feet seemed to inevitably walk her up to the old farmhouse.

Which would have been troubling, were it not for the fact Mark was always transparently happy to see her as well. Occasionally he dropped by her mother's place, but he seemed content to spend time with her when she arrived, talking or watching movies or taking long walks around the countryside. Sometimes he read to her from his book; valuing, he said, a viewpoint which was not his own or his editor's. He always insisted she give him her honest opinion, and listened seriously to her critiques. He didn't always take her advice, but he was always careful to explain why he thought her ideas wouldn't work.

The only irritation was Mark's futile battle against the electrical system in the house. His TV and entertainment system seemed to cut out at the drop of a hat, especially when they were in the family room together, watching something romantic. Light bulbs, even expensive LEDs, burned out at an alarming rate. As his landlady, her mother had already had electricians out twice to check, to no avail, and Mark had started to mutter darkly about replacing the entire wiring system if the advance sales for "Aching Loins" continued to pile up. Taking her advice, however, he had stockpiled a supply of candles, and had even gone so far as to buy and test a pair of old kerosene lanterns.

One Friday evening, a chance remark by her about the story made him wrinkle his brow, open up his laptop, and start writing. Bree had been complimented at first. But as Mark's fingers continued to tap against the keys of the computer, she grew bored, then angry, then flat-out furious. Finally she grabbed a can of soda out of the fridge and sat down on the front porch to watch the sunset, inwardly seething.

It was nearly an hour later when Mark finally came out, shamefaced.

"I'm sorry," he said, sitting down beside her. He could barely meet her eyes.

She had been prepared to ream him for the way he had ignored her, but his honest contrition dulled her anger. She took a deep breath of clean night air, watching the fireflies dance over the lawn. She tried to calm herself. "Want to talk about it?" she asked instead, staring out into the darkness.

"Writers..." he trailed off, then started over. "When I get an idea, when something becomes clear, I have to get it down right away. I can actually hear the dialogue in my head, and I know if I don't write it out I'll regret it. It won't be as good if I try to recapture the magic later. I've written in bed, jumped out of the shower, gotten up in the middle of the night to scribble down ideas. I have to do it, Bree. I'm a writer. It's what I do. And when I'm writing, it's as if the entire world goes away. Someone could let off a shotgun blast in my ear and I'd probably just grunt and try to come up with a way to describe a woman's breasts that I hadn't already used three times in the last two chapters.

"It doesn't make me care for you any less. But if you're going to be involved with me, it's something you're going to have to be prepared for. Some days I'm just going to disappear into a story, and not come out until I'm happy with what I've written. I hope you understand."

Brianna sighed, slightly mollified. "Well, I suppose I can learn to deal with it. You've been pretty damn decent about the...thing."

"What thing?"

"Shut up," she said, blushing. As if they were joined, they rose to their feet together. She stepped into his embrace, laying her head against his chest and wrapping her arms around him. "Going to be around tomorrow night?" she asked.

"Should be," he said. "What would you like to do?"

She made an irritated sound. "You know, Mark, it's okay if we do what you want to do every once in a while. Otherwise I might start to think you've got no spine at all."

"All right," he said, his voice challenging. "Nine o'clock. Bring a blanket. And a pillow, maybe."

She leaned back, looking into his face. "Mark, if you're trying to seduce me, you're totally doing it wrong."

She felt his chest shake as he softly laughed. "No, not that. Wait and see. It's a surprise."


That night, Brianna dreamed of making love to Mark.

They were standing in a grassy field, under a sky so dark and deep it seemed to be the softest, blackest velvet, dotted with stars like chips of diamond. A full moon drifted overhead, casting a pearlescent glow over them, gilding their bodies with silver.

They were naked, and unashamed. Mark kissed her, the faint rasp of stubble at his chin scratching her cheeks as he thoroughly explored her mouth. In turn, her hands drifted from his back to his rear to his thighs, then cradled his erect shaft. She smiled as she heard his breath catch, and she slowly pumped him, proud of her power over this wonderful man.

With a wordless growl he caught her around the knees and shoulders, lifting her, then laying her down on the grass, as soft as the eiderdown quilt in her bedroom. Lying on their sides, they kissed unhurriedly, confident in their love and affection. Brianna snuggled closer, her breasts flattening where they pressed against Mark's chest, and threw one leg over his hip. He hissed as the act caused his erection to press against her cleft, the soft head nestled into her folds, jerking spasmodically in time with his heartbeat.

She smiled into his eyes. "I'm ready now, Mark."

"No," he said. His voice was low and hoarse, and he had to clear his throat before he continued. "You're not. But," he continued, his hand slipping between them, "When I'm done with you, you will be."

Expertly, he parted her nether lips, as if he had done it a thousand times before. With unerring skill, his thumb rested on her clit, while two fingers ran up and down her opening, gathering moisture. When they had completed their sweet task, they transferred her slickness to his thumb, while they went wandering again. Slowly, then with increasing speed, his thumb ran back and forth over her throbbing nodule. At the same time, his stiffened fingers slowly thrust into her hot, aching passage.

She squirmed under his loving touch, wanting more, needing more. She hooked an arm around his neck, drawing him close. With a heave, she had him on top of her, the stiff length of his cock burning the inside of her thigh. She wriggled instinctively, her legs spreading wide, wanting nothing more than to feel him enter her.

His shadowed face loomed over her. "Brianna? Are you sure?"

She reached her hands up to smooth away the worry-lines in his forehead, then drew him down for a kiss. As they embraced, their bodies shifted, bringing them into perfect alignment.

I was wise to have waited, she thought, even as the tip of his cock breached her gates.

"Yes, my love," she whispered. "I'm sure. She raised her head, letting her lips touch his in the tenderest of kisses. As her tongue flickered out, she felt him surge forward...

...And woke in her bed, hot and panting and alone. The long t-shirt she wore on warm summer nights was rucked up over her hips. One of her hands was rhythmically squeezing her breast. The other was between her legs, her thumb strumming her button. She threw her free hand over her mouth to stifle a scream as her orgasm crested and broke over her in a surging wave. Her hips rose and fell, her hungry channel swallowing her fingers as the muscles of her vagina clutched and released, over and over again.

Panting, she fell back onto the mattress, her hair sticking to her forehead in sweaty spikes. Out of the corner of her eye, she thought she saw a shadow shift in the dark, and she bolted upright, her heart hammering in terror. She snapped on her bedside lamp with one fumbling hand, squinting against the sudden glare.

Nothing. Her frantic glances around the room revealed no hidden intruder.

She snorted to herself. Better learn to relax, Bree. If you start jumping at shadows every time you have a good orgasm, you should probably break up with Mark.

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