Catch and Release Ch. 05bywilderness©
Tim poured charcoal briquettes into a battered, three-legged grill.
"I remember when my dad bought this relic ten years ago. We came up here to get the place in shape for hunting season, and he decided to barbecue the deer we never shot."
While squirting on a liberal amount of lighter fluid, he added, "I just turned 18. Dad gave me my first beer that night and then, out of the blue, like commenting on the weather, he told me he was divorcing mom."
Eve watched his activity with her usual concentrated interest.
Tim threw on a match and the grill erupted in a whump of fire.
Frightened, she jumped back.
In a Neanderthal voice, Tim explained, "Fire, friend. Good."
When the flames died down, she edged closer, reaching out to feel the heat on her palm.
"How do they cook in outer space? Microwave? Or do they just squeeze gray nutritional paste out of a tube? I bet you ate some wild stuff from other planets. We have Mars bars here, and Milky Ways, too. I should pick some up. Give you a taste of home. Did you have Tang? I know you had some good putang up there. Yours tasted great. The ultimate energy drink." He stirred the coals around a little. "I guess this is home now, huh?"
"Ootang," said Eve.
"Jeeze, I'm a bad influence."
Once the coals were arranged to his liking, Tim said, "Let's eat on the porch."
Together, they carried out the kitchen table and two chairs. The plates and silverware were positioned across from each other and ninety degrees to the lake so they both could enjoy the view.
"You want a beer? This is a great place to drink your first beer, but I guess everything here is a first for you, isn't it."
"Yeah, bare is good, too. Bare and beer go really good together."
After placing a pot of water on the stove, he brought two beers outside and sat on the porch steps. Eve sat beside him.
"Here you go." He unscrewed the top so Eve could see and follow his example.
"Let's have a toast." Tim clinked his bottle against hers, and said, "Here's to first beers, fun, and no bad news."
"Yes, I am." He put an arm around her shoulders. "Your words are already slurred. How will I know if you're drunk?"
Eve watched him take a swallow. She sipped from her bottle and then wrinkled her nose.
"It's an acquired taste, like coffee," said Tim, bringing the bottle to his lips. This time, taking a long swig.
She took another pull.
He grinned. "Drinking on an empty stomach. This'll be fun to watch."
They shared quiet minutes, staring at the lake.
"Time to put on the steaks." After dropping potatoes and corn into the pot of boiling water on the stove, Tim returned from the kitchen and laid the steaks on the grill.
Eve finished her beer and had to grab the handrail for balance when she stood.
"What's the matter, Blondie?"
She wobbled over and gripped his arm for balance to watch the barbecuing procedure.
Tim kissed her forehead and she giggled. "Now you're acting like a true blond."
He sipped from his second beer. She grabbed it away and took a hit.
"Not too much. I don't want you passing out before we eat."
Eve put her head on his shoulder and an arm around his waist.
"These are the best of times, and the worst of minds." He fondled her ass, while flipping meat.
She giggled and rubbed a sweaty cheek against him. The arm around Tim's waist dropped down and she copied his groping hand.
A few minutes later, Eve stepped away, pulled off her shirt and threw it on the porch.
"Good thing for you, my barbecue doesn't have a dress code."
Topless, Eve began a meandering tour of the grounds. On her hands and knees, she made a close up inspection of the neat row of flowers along the base of the front porch. Gingerly, she touched a yellow bloom and looked at Tim.
"It's a flower."
"My dad's second wife planted them. She tried to add a woman's touch to the place. Dad didn't like it, said she was invading his personal space. That marriage only lasted two years. Good thing, because I was tired of fucking her too."
Tim walked to the shore, filled his empty beer bottle with water, and then returned to the flowerbed. He picked two blossoms, stuck the stems into the bottle, and placed it in the center of the table. "There, now we have a romantic atmosphere."
"You like, yes?"
"Well, how about one for you?" He returned to the garden, picked another, and placed it behind Eve's ear. "There. Now I have two pairs of flowers to enjoy at dinner."
Eve's irises wedged into the corners of her eye sockets, trying to see the bloom. Stiffly, like she was walking with a Ming vase on her head, Eve shuffled into the cabin and disappeared.
Satisfied the meat was done, Tim slid the steaks to the edge of the grill and then went inside to get the rest of the food. He found Eve standing at the bathroom mirror, staring at the daffodil.
"Excuse me, Blossom. I have to pee." On the way by, he fondled her breast and kissed her shoulder.
After he flushed, Eve took a turn on the toilet.
"Beer does that." Drying his hands, he said, "It's time to eat," and then left for the stove.
The potatoes and corn were in bowls by the time Eve entered the kitchen.
Turning to go outside, Tim said, "I've got this. You get two more..." The sight of Eve completely nude, except for the daffodil, caused a momentary loss of concentration, "beers."
"Bares." She gave him a knowing smile, swayed to the refrigerator, and extracted two more beers. Without meeting his gaze, she turned and headed for the porch.
More than a little enchanted, Tim followed.
Once at the table, he portioned out the food and then held Eve's chair for her. "Please be seated, Miss Hottest Hottie."
Before sitting, Eve kissed his cheek.
"Let me show you how to use a steak knife," he said, leaning over her shoulder and placing a knife and fork in her hands.
"First, you stab it." He nuzzled her neck, and added, "Then, you saw off a bite sized chunk," while guiding her knife hand back and forth.
She placed the morsel between her lips and groaned.
"Don't talk with your mouth full." Tim sat down in his chair and buttered his potatoes. "You need to put some butter on those."
Eve followed his lead. She brought a drenched forkful to her mouth and a golden drop landed between her breasts.
"Don't worry about that. I'll lick it off later," he said, dabbing his greasy lips with a paper napkin.
Seeing his cleanliness, Eve picked up a napkin and wiped her chin and chest.
"Hey! Don't spoil my fun."
With corn stuck between her teeth, she smiled and said, "Fun and no bah newzzz," then clinked her beer against his.
He laughed and lifted his bottle in salute. "Okay, here's to fun and no bad news."
They continued to eat quietly, Tim alternately taking in the natural beauty of the lake and the natural beauty of the naked woman.
Most of the time, Eve kept her gaze fixed on Tim -- following his example, learning from his actions. Periodically, she would touch the daffodil tucked behind her ear, to make sure it was still there. When Tim looked away, her eyes would follow in the same direction to see what caught his interest, but invariably they returned to study him.
"I don't think I like being under a microscope." Finished with his meal, Tim put down his fork. The setting sun gave Eve's skin a golden glow. His eyes wandered down to her chest. "But, it does have its perks."
"Perks." Eve touched her left breast, to show she understood the insinuation.
"Don't stop eating on my account."
Rolling his eyes, he picked up his plate. "Let's do the dishes, and then we'll make smores."
Together, they cleared the table.
Tim filled the kitchen sink with soapy water and handed Eve a dishtowel. "I'll wash. You dry."
"No, you dry."
Her brow furrowed. "Oo dry?"
After a few seconds of watching him scrub, Eve disappeared from view and began rubbing his back.
"That feels nice."
"Nice," she whispered in agreement. Pressing her torso against his skin, her fingers slipped around to tickle his chest.
"I'll just put this stuff in the dish rack. We'll let them air dry."
Their skin became slick where it touched and Eve glided her breasts over Tim's firm contour, teasing them both. She kissed along his shoulder ridge, until she reached his neck. Nuzzling his ear, one hand wandered down to check his arousal indicator. Her hips pressed forward, pinning him to the counter.
Rinsing the last plate, Tim said, "You certainly have my attention." He dried his hands. "You wanna fork?"
"Fork?" Eve clung to him all the way to the silverware drawer.
"Fondue forks are perfect for roasting marshmallows over the grill."
Her attention was drawn to the long, thin tool he held up for appraisal. Eve took the handle and felt the pointy end against her fingertip.
"Here, you carry the bag of marshmallows and I'll carry the rest."
Squishing the bag under her arm, Eve went to the refrigerator and pulled out two more bottles of beer.
"If you insist, but the flavors are going to clash."
They paraded back to the porch and set everything on the table. Tim laid out the graham crackers and chocolate bars, and then rolled the grill closer to the steps. "Okay, everything's ready. But first," he picked up Eve's discarded shirt, "let's protect your lovely boobs."
She frowned, as he slipped it over her head.
"I know you're a nudist, but safety first. Besides, I really like a little mystery. You're just as sexy almost dressed." Taking her in his arms, he kissed her softly. "Foreplay, remember it, savor it," he added, rubbing the cotton-covered buns.
The word 'foreplay' hit a nerve, or maybe it was his hands. In any case, Eve closed her eyes and smiled. "Mmm, fo-play."
Clearing his throat, Tim said, "Let's get started," and picked up a fondue fork. He impaled a marshmallow, while stepping down to the grill.
Eve followed close behind, forked marshmallow in hand.
After removing the grate with a stick and banking the hot coals close to the side, Tim rotated his marshmallow in the wavy thermals. "I like mine cooked to a nice golden brown, but if you really want it to melt the chocolate it has to be really hot."
Tentatively, Eve stood with one hand on Tim's back and extended her white cylinder over the glowing embers.
"You'd better turn it, or --"
Too late. Eve's marshmallow burst into flames. Her shriek echoed across the dark lake. She waved it frantically, and in the twilight it reminded Tim of a meteorite.
Grabbing her wrist, he pulled the molten sugar close and blew it out. "Quick, to the porch!" he said, guiding her up the stairs by the arm.
He explained while doing, "Put it on the cracker, add the chocolate, then the top cracker, and then press down and pull out the fork. There, perfect. Well, a little burnt for my taste, but a good first effort."
Unsure of what happened next, Eve glanced from the smore to Tim.
He made the 'eat' sign. "Go ahead. Try it."
Timidly, she brought the treat to her lips and nibbled. The sweet flavor invited a larger sample. "Mmm." Her eyes grew round with yet another revealed delight.
"Want some more, yes?"
"Mmm, sumooore. Yes," she mumbled, cheek puffed out.
Grinning, he said, "Don't talk with your mouth full."
A fifth treat and a bottle of beer later, the eastern horizon had become dark and the sky overhead star studded. A cooling breeze had caressed Eve's nipples awake beneath the tee shirt. Tim enjoyed the view, as she sucked goo from her fingers.
"You look delicious."
Her smile was broad and chocolate framed. "Deeleeshush."
"You're irresistible," he said, moving close.
Encouraged by his advance, Eve closed the gap between them and looked up with expectant eyes.
"I think I like showing you the world, according to Tim." He wiped chocolate from her cheek and then sucked it off his finger. "Sloppiness becomes you. Let me get the rest." Holding her head between his palms, Tim bent to kiss away the sticky residue, while Eve's body melted against him. When the last bit was gone, his lips covered hers and received a passionate reward.
Touching foreheads, Tim whispered, "I don't think I want any smore of you. I think I want all of you." He removed the wilted flower from her hair.
Seeing its condition, Eve groaned with sadness. Gingerly, she reached out to pet it.
"I know. But another one will be back next spring. The root is still alive." Eve's sentimental reaction touched his heart, and gave him a twinge of compassion he'd only felt for her. "Let's clean up."
Once again, the sink was filled with hot, soapy water and a couple of dishes.
"Eve, it's you're turn to wash." He took her hands and helped get her started. After she was on her way, he stepped behind and massaged her shoulders.
She groaned and stopped working.
"Keep going. This is foreplay."
"Foreplay, yes," she whispered.
Pressing himself against her back, he brushed aside the mane of gold and teased her salty neck with his lips. Lifting the hem of her shirt, his hands snaked beneath and up her belly until they cradled the soft weight of her breasts. His fingertips orbited the nipples, toying with the sensitive launch buttons. Pushing his palms up to her clavicles, the bunched shirt popped over her breasts, and exposed them to his view as he kissed her cheek.
He hugged her tight, and whispered in her ear, "Eve, you are a beautiful woman. You've had the stars. I want to give you the world."
Time slowed. Seconds became minutes. Frequently, Eve would moan and lean back with a loss of self-control.
Whenever she stopped washing, he would stop caressing.
She tried another tactic, and splashed unproductively, in order to keep his delightful hands active.
"You can't trick me, Eve," he said, while his index fingers rested on her points of interest.
Wantonly, she wiggled her chest for friction, and demanded, "Fore...play!"
She did, but slowed further and seemed reluctant to finish.
"I see what you're up to. You think the foreplay will stop when you're done. Well, in that case," Tim picked up the towel and began to dry a plate, "I'll stop now."
"You're almost done. Then more foreplay, yes?"
Her frown disappeared. "Foreplay, yes." The tee shirt stayed bunched high on her chest, as she washed the two remaining fondue forks. When they were dropped into the rack, she pulled the drain plug and pulled the towel from Tim's hand.
"Wait, I'm not finished."
Appearing angry, she wiped her hands and stepped toward Tim.
Mechanically, he stepped back. "What?"
Throwing the towel on the counter, she gripped her tee shirt and yanked it off. Her eyes became slits of aggression.
Tim laughed and ran for his life. The patter of dainty feet followed close behind. He didn't dare look. Once he made it to the porch, directional indecision gave Eve time to catch up. She barreled into his back and almost knocked him onto the smoldering grill. Kisses rained down on his shoulders. His arms were pinned to his sides by her embrace.
"You're a crazy woman!" he declared, dragging her clinging weight down the stairs. "I think we need to cool off."
With Eve trying to take him down like a lioness -- all maw and paws -- reaching the lake was harder than he would've imagined. By the time they stood by the shore, she had his shorts down to mid-thigh and her fist around his cock.
Holding his palm in front of her face, he yelled, "Timeout!"
Reluctantly, she let go, but the smoldering look and heavy breathing told him it was but a temporary reprieve.
Dropping his shorts and stepping out, Tim said, "Let's rinse off some of the sweat, before I let you have your way with me." He took her by the hand and led her into the chilly water until they were waist deep. Then he hugged her, enjoying the hot and cold combination.
She laid her cheek on his shoulder and relaxed. Her hands moved gently over his back.
Inhaling with his nose buried in her hair, Tim wanted a lifetime of summers like this. He scooped handfuls of water and laved her back.
A groan of pleasure tickled his neck.
"Like that, yes?"
"Yes," said Eve, soft and dreamy. Mimicking him, she rinsed his back.
They cuddled for a few refreshing minutes. This was a moment to cherish, a capsule of time when everything else faded away. Earth was a beautiful and loving place for a change.
Tim separated from her, cupped two handfuls of water, and let the coldness dribble down the valley of Eve's chest. After the hands were empty, his palms leisurely bathed each breast.
In the twilight, Eve swayed with eyes closed, wearing a contented grin. Goose flesh dimpled her torso. When Tim finished, she reciprocated with a shy tenderness. Tears ran down her cheek.
"Eve, are you okay?" He dipped his fingers into the lake and traced the damp line from her cheek to jaw. His touch cooled her brow and cradled her face. "What's the matter?"
Unable to express her emotions verbally, she hugged him with a fierceness that felt like desperation. Her body quivered.
"Eve. Honey. It's okay." Tim petted her hair. "I know. All these changes. Coming back must be so hard for you, everything is strange and no one to turn to. I can understand why you'd be scared." Lifting her chin until she met his gaze, he promised, "I'm here. I'll take care of you."
Her cold hands tangled in his hair, sending a chill down his spine. Forcefully, she pulled his lips to hers. They clung to one another in a passionate exchange of physical encouragement.
It was Eve who finally broke away and anxiously led him by the hand to shore.
Tim stopped her at the porch steps for a brief reprieve. "I think I know what you want. Are you sure?"
As if she understood, Eve climbed the three stairs and faced him. Her fingers haltingly slipped over her breasts, down her stomach and circled between her legs. She pointed at his penis and back to her feminine counterpart. Breathily, she said, "Yes," and then disappeared inside the cabin.
Tim stared at the screen door, his feet held fast by gravity. Not the gravity exerted by the Earth's mass, but the gravity of the situation. Eve's affection and attractiveness, her celestial innocence, exerted an almost irresistible pull on him. For the first time in his life, he was reluctant to bed a woman, because he cared. The consequences might be disastrous. Without knowing what Eve thought all this meant to them as a couple, a misunderstanding might lead to her emotional meltdown. How drunk was she?
To give himself time to think, Tim moved the grill down to the shore and dumped the coals into the water. The hiss and steam reminded him of hell.
A swim would be nice, but instead, he sat on the porch for a few minutes to take some cleansing breaths and meditate on his options. Moonlight cast long shadows and sparkled on the lake's surface. It was a perfect evening, and it would be a privilege to share it with Eve. She was giving herself willingly, enthusiastically. What man in his right mind would refuse?
This was the longest that Eve had left his side and he began to wonder, 'Where is she?' Tim went inside to find out what she was doing. No lights were on, but moonbeams slanted through the windows to provide dim images in gray scale.
She appeared in the bedroom door as a shapely silhouette. "Tim?" Her hand rose up and showed him the translucent circle of a condom.
His heart jumped and a lump caught in his throat. "I'll be right back. I need to clean up."
Determined to make Eve's first time a satisfying experience, Tim washed and brushed his teeth. The beer still dulled his senses, but that was a good thing. He would be able to hold off a little longer, make their coupling last.