Emma Ch. 09

bybradley_stoke©

IX

Every so often Charlotte was required to be on duty to meet the public: usually just to answer their rather technical questions on tax status. There was a policy that interviewees should state whether or not they would be embarrassed by being interviewed by someone unclothed, but it was generally only a small minority of rather elderly clients who preferred not to. Ironically, it was those who were least enthusiastic about being interviewed by a naked woman that Charlotte felt least reserved about being naked with. She had adopted the policy of wearing the white coat provided when interviewing men and it was only for women and fairly asexual men that she would remove it.

Charlotte adopted her usual policy for interviewing Miss J. Taylor by preparing her notes but not bothering with the white coat. Miss Taylor was an actress concerned about a rebate that she felt was due her after a period of three months in a high street clothes shop at a lower rate of pay than for the other nine months of the tax year. It was only when Charlotte entered the interview booth that she realised that Miss Taylor was the Josephine she’d only met the once at her flat. She was wearing a prim white blouse with a silk black scarf and her hair was kept it in place by an ornate hair-clip.

It was an embarrassed start to the interview, but Charlotte soon relaxed and, after giving Josephine the required forms and explaining the procedures to her, they were able to chat about more general matters. Josephine was auditioning for several television plays, and her agent was very optimistic about her chances in at least one of these. Most of her recent work had been in commercials: and she’d been in enough of those to no longer need to work in Maurice’s (Gentleman Outfitters)for a while. The commercials had been of a generally saucy nature, which seemed a little odd when the products were for such things as detergent, formica furniture and road safety.

The interview seemed so brief, but in fact when Josephine had left they’d been talking for nearly an hour and a half. Charlotte arranged to meet Josephine for a meal later that week, which Josephine would cook. “I just love cooking!” she said. At first Charlotte suggested certain clubs and wine bars that she’d been to with Clarissa. “Oh, I don’t like the sound of the Haworth!” Josephine exclaimed. “It’s a naturist singles bar, isn’t it?” Charlotte couldn’t really argue with the description, but she felt it strange that someone like Charlotte who had become accustomed to making love for the camera would be so prudish about taking her clothes off in a place like that. Josephine admitted that she’d enjoyed her visit to Charlotte’s flat, but she hadn’t felt like going again. “It was almost like going to an audition,” she remarked. “Even though Emma and Harriett are such marvellous company.”

Charlotte watched Josephine with a feeling of elevation, curiously happy with herself and the world. That Josephine seemed only interested in her as a friend was perhaps as elating as anything else. Emma was not the Emma that Charlotte used to love so deeply: however much she still craved for her.

When Charlotte went home on the underground she felt she was on a cloud. She had a brief drink with Clarissa at a small wine bar near the office (not a naturist one) and found it difficult to even pretend to be interested in Clarissa’s converation which, as always, concentrated on her sexual encounters and how her boyfriend, despite being so wonderful, didn’t really understand her. When she ascended to the open air and walked through the suburban streets to her flat she was propelled by thoughts that took her past her flat and forced her to retrace her steps.

When she entered the flat, took off her clothes and announced her arrival, she was surprised to see Emma run towards her rather solicitously. Emma grasped her round the shoulders and hugged her against her chest. “Can you forgive me?” she asked.

“Sorry?”

“After how snotty I was last night when I saw you with Penelope! I don’t know what got into me! I must have been deranged! It must be with Harriett away. I don’t know! I shouldn’t have been like that! Of course you should feel free to make love with Penelope and whoever else you like! I shouldn’t be so selfish and get in the way of what you want. How can you ever forgive me?”

“That’s alright! I’d almost forgotten ...”

Emma hurried Charlotte along with her into the living room, and Charlotte was very conscious of a very firm grip around her waist. “I’ve chatted with Penelope about it. She says I was just jealous. I think it’s worse than that. I just don’t think of your needs at all. While Harriett and I have been making love, I’ve just not thought of you (and a professed lesbian too!) having the same needs. But Penelope’s here.”

The two girls entered Emma’s bedroom and there indeed lying on her bed was Penelope who was, however, still dressed in the rather plain clothes she wore to her supermarket office. Penelope looked up shyly and, it seemed to Charlotte, with some embarrassment as well. What had Emma and Penelope been talking about?

“So,” announced Emma, emphasising her statement with a pause, “if the two of you would like to make love I’ll stay out of your way.” And with that Emma disappeared and left Charlotte with Penelope.

What followed was certainly not passion. More like duty performed for Emma’s benefit. After a short chat, where both Charlotte and Penelope skirted discreetly around any subject which could be construed about sex, Penelope shyly removed her clothes to reveal her pale boney frame. As the two girls entwined and went through the motions of what had been more successful the day before, Charlotte felt that perhaps their earlier conversation on the new robotic tills and the bar-codes on the new notes had, after all, been more satisfying. And this was only her second time of making love to a woman. What she’d always wanted! What, as a lesbian, should be the pinnacle of sexual activity!

Penelope must have felt much the same, because after only half an hour of groping, fumbling and rolling around together, they separated and, almost unconsciously, she started putting her clothes back on. She certainly wasn’t as hot after this as she’d been the previous night.

Emma was surprised to see Charlotte and Penelope emerge after such a short time. She was watching a film which was thankfully free of all the sex she’d had to watch the last few months, and she’d expected to be able to see that and perhaps another before the two lovers emerged. She was also slightly put off to see Penelope in her clothes again.

“Didn’t you make love?” she asked.

“Oh yes! We did!” said Penelope with a look of enthusiasm.

“And did you enjoy it?” addressing Charlotte quizzically.

“Yes. It was very nice,” said Charlotte in a way that left Emma more questions unanswered than she’d had before.

“Oh, that’s alright then,” said Emma conscious that further questioning was probably not in order. “Shall I wind back this film. It’s very good.”

“What is it?” asked Charlotte eagerly.

Emma looked at the video sleeve. “Mary Barton. It’s based on a book I believe. And it’s not a sex video. I promise you!”

It was a more relaxed Emma that Charlotte met in the kitchen before leaving for work. It was she, and not Charlotte, who had spent the night making love with Penelope, which, despite a certain element of envy, was actually a relief to Charlotte. Emma kissed Charlotte on the lips with Penelope’s arms around her waist and one of Penelope’s fingers lightly stroking her clitoris. Penelope then followed suit by giving Charlotte a somewhat more passionate kiss: her tongue skimming around Charlotte’s teeth and the roof of her mouth.

Charlotte left for work feeling more than a little anxious about her evening with Josephine. She’d not felt such an anxiety about having an evening out with someone since she’d first been invited out for a date as a school-girl. An anxiety that proved to be well-founded when all the boy seemed interested in was getting his hands inside her clothes and pulling her knickers down. She just didn’t care enough about him to even bother stopping him. Her day at work seemed to drag on. Perhaps it was just that all the most tedious end of the month accounting happened on the same day. Or perhaps it was the way that the clock was going so much slower than usual.

There was a temp on reception who took naturist license a little further than most by straying out of the office with no clothes and down to the building’s foyer. This was the only incident of an otherwise tedious day, and by no means the first occasion that a temp had misinterpreted departmental policy for sexual license or overt exhibitionism. When the day ended, Charlotte found herself sitting next to this temp by the bus-stop waiting for the bus which would go to Josephine’s flat in a seedy but bohemian part of town distinguished principally by having no underground stations. She was going in the same direction, so Charlotte found herself doomed to nearly an hour of chatter about her boyfriends, her holidays abroad in tourist traps like Croatia, Albania and Libya, and how much she thought of herself like a naturist like Charlotte. “It must be great not wearing clothes all day!” she exclaimed rather loudly.

Charlotte didn’t really like the thought of everyone on the 73 bus imagining her naked, so she was quite relieved when she left the bus and followed the directions attached to a piece of paper in her A-Z and could wander about fairly sure that no one was aware she was a naturist. She wore rather more clothes than usual for a warm day, sure that Josephine would disapprove if she’d turned up even topless, and felt rather virtuous for it as she passed others in the street showing rather more flesh than she. Men, she noticed, always got away with flaunting rather more flesh than women, as she passed cars being washed in the street and workmen sitting on a wall.

Josephine’s flat was a tiny affair in a large rambling building, in obvious need of renovation. The door was almost bare of paint and an upstairs window was covered with cardboard to replace the glass. It was Josephine, though, who Charlotte had come to see, and her heart visibly thundered as the door came ajar and Josephine appeared. “I’m so glad you could make it,” she said smiling broadly. “It’s almost ready - the ratatouille that is.”

The two girls went upstairs to Josephine’s flat which was full of the aroma of casserole and peppers. It was also full of cushions which covered most of the floor and most of a rather battered-looking sofa. The other thing it was full of were photographs and posters, all of a thespian nature, obscuring the rather dull and faded wallpaper. “You can take your clothes off now if you like,” announced Josephine kindly.

“Sorry, I’m ...” began Charlotte, who had been convinced that she’d be spending the evening in the clothes she was wearing. The experience would even be quite a novel one. She now associated clothes as the rather clumsy things she was obliged to wear to keep her modesty when travelling to work or being in the public eye. But the proposition of spending an evening naked with a fully clothed woman itself seemed as peculiar as not being naked.

“Don’t be silly!” smiled Josephine. “I know you’re a naturist, and it doesn’t embarrass me at all.” This was quite a different image than the one projected by her reserved selection of clothes, which even as a concession to the warm weather (being a pair of white shorts and blouse) seemed quite prim. However, Charlotte couldn’t help feeling that the subject having been broached it would be rude to decline the offer, so she stripped off and laid her clothes neatly in a pile in the tiny hallway.

The meal Josephine prepared was truly sumptuous. Not large in quantity, but certainly so in taste. She was a witty woman, which was assisted by her ability as an actress to entertain Charlotte in a way that soon had her gasping for breath between gales of laughter. Her life as an actress had certainly involved quite a few misadventures, and meeting some very interesting people. Charlotte was no expert on the theatre or cinema but she knew at least the names of many of the people mentioned in Josephine’s anecdotes. After the meal, the two girls sat together amongst the cushions and the odd fluffy toy while Josephine flicked through a photograph album of stills from plays, films and advertisements she’d been in.

The great majority of her performances had involved her in performing naked and often in full penetration sex. The photographs Josephine showed was almost like a sequence of black-and-white and colour pages from a pornographic magazine. There were shots of her being buggered, of having semen squirted onto her face, of penises either fully in her mouth or on the edge of it, of objects as well as penises up her vagina, and shots of her on stage with more long-distant versions of the same kind of activity. Even many of her stills for television commercials or magazine advertisements involved some quite explicit sexual act.

“How can you make love in front of the camera?” wondered Charlotte.

“It’s just a performance,” Josephine admitted, looking ludicrously modest in the flesh compared to her photographic record. “You learn your lines and perform to the best of your ability. And it’s not the camera I perform to. It’s the audience that may be looking through that camera. That takes significantly more skill!” She smiled warmly at Charlotte. “But it takes a little bit more than just play-acting to perform sex successfully. So, I was pretty grateful to the assistance that Emma and Harriett gave me to learn lesbian love. I was able to sail through the auditions ...”

“Auditions?”

“Well, they’ve got to be sure of how well you perform... I sailed through the auditions to get a part in the last film I was in where I had to make love to several women. Not just men, in this case. And here’s the proof!” She proudly showed a few photographs which showed her having very passionate sex with two women: one of whom was black and had a large pink dildo incongruously strapped round her waist. “That part got me more money than any part I’d played in a film before.”

As the evening progressed, and the two girls sipped the white wine that Charlotte had brought with her, it seemed natural for Charlotte to miss the last bus and stay semi-slumped on the cushions on Josephine’s floor. It also seemed natural when Josephine slipped off her clothes, in a practised and unembarrassed gesture that Charlotte for all her professed naturism was not really capable of. The two girls soon lapsed into a kind of contemplative silence, while a Compact Disc of a mid-twentieth century string quartet played in the background, their arms around each other, and Charlotte blissfully happy with the warmth of Josephine’s flesh against hers.

And it didn’t seem strange when the two girls drifted off to bed together and made the tender sort of love that Charlotte had always dreamed of making with Emma. No penetration. No toys. Not even an attempt at an orgasm. Just lying together exploring each other’s body with their eyes, hands and tongues. As Charlotte looked deep into Josephine’s beautiful large eyes her body and heart melted like ice-cream on a hot summer’s day. Her love for Josephine choked her, and the only thing she could do was allow a tear to gently loosen itself from her eye and onto her cheek. She could only hope that Josephine felt the same way. But she was sure. Oh so sure! That Josephine did.

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