Peak of Desire Ch. 01

byvirgofemme©

"What'd you forget this time, Iggs? Your car keys?" A small chuckle passed her lips.

The hardwood floors creaked as the footsteps approached, and she suddenly realized that it couldn't be Iggy, because the footsteps were too heavy to be him. The person who had entered was wearing boots, she could tell by the sound of the steps they were taking.

Curious as to what the customer looked like, she glanced over her shoulder and was shocked to see that it was the window washer. As her eyes fell on his strikingly handsome face, and lean, muscular body, her pulse began to race.

"Oh, hi." She felt her heart give a little flutter.

"Hello. Thought I'd stop by and return something of yours."

"I wasn't aware that I'd left anything with you."

He help up a tube of lipstick, then handed it to her. "It must have rolled out of your purse when you fell."

A sheepish look crossed her face. "Thanks." She slipped it into the pocket of her jeans. Stunned by his presence, she took a few moments to admire his form. No longer in his uniform jumpsuit, he was clad in a pair of dark jeans and a black t-shirt. "So how did you know where I worked?"

"I watched you cross the street and come in here. Half an hour after you went inside, I saw you standing behind the cash register, so it wasn't too difficult to figure out that this was your place of employment." His lips curled into a little smile.

"Right. Well thanks for bringing it by."

"So how's your arm?"

For a moment she was unsure of why he was asking, and then she remembered that there was a band aid on her elbow. Bending her arm to glance down at it she embarrassingly said, "Oh, right. I'd forgotten all about it. It's fine, thanks for asking."

He glanced at the tall bookcases surrounding them, then casually strolled a little further down the aisle. "You have any books on Nepal?"

"Sure. They're in the Travel section. I can take you over there, if you'd like."

"I definitely would."

The deep timbre of his voice sent a rush of heat between her legs, and his flirtatious tone caused her to experience a little flutter in her stomach.

"Follow me."

She led him a few aisles over, and once they reached the section, she scanned the shelves for books written about the Himalayas. She spotted one at a higher level, but since she wasn't tall enough to reach it, she had to use the assistance of a ladder. She slid it along its track until it was positioned in front of her, and then stepped up onto the rungs.

She pulled three books off the shelf and held them in one arm, while using the free one to help her descend the ladder. The weight of the books proved to be a bit much for her, and as she continued her way downward, she became unstable, finding it difficult to keep balance with the heavy books in her arm.

Noticing that she was unsteady, he reached up and placed his palms against her hips, firmly cradling her in his hands until she reached the bottom rung. She nearly swooned from his touch, and a sliver of arousal coursed through her. Once her feet were back on the ground, she turned to face him and handed him the books.

"Take a look at those and pick out the one you like best."

She then left him to browse though the books in privacy. She really didn't want to leave him at all, but his presence was intoxicating, and she was beginning to feel lightheaded. She'd never felt such an attraction to any man before, and was certain that the way she felt inside was clearly displayed on her face for him to see. Surely he must know how drawn to him she was. Anyone with a presence that captivating, was no doubt fully aware of the strong effect they had on people.

While he was looking at the books she'd picked out, she kept herself busy by updating the rest of the signs. Once that was done, she ventured into the true crime section, and slid a book off the shelf to have a look at it. When fifteen minutes passed by, she thought about venturing over to the travel section to see if he was still there, but figured that if he needed any help, he'd just holler out to her. Five more minutes passed before he finally made an appearance, and as he made his way down the aisle toward where she was located, she felt her knees grow weak.

He walked with a confident saunter, and carried himself in a way that commanded attention. It was obvious he possessed a lot of self confidence, and yet he was nowhere near arrogant. She didn't know if it was pheromones or what, but as he came closer to her, she picked up on his energy, and realized it was completely irresistible.

"I couldn't decide on just one book, so I'm going to buy two." He held them up for her to see.

"Glad you found them useful. I'll ring you up." She closed the novel she was reading and put it back on the shelf.

As she turned back around, she found him standing directly in front of her. Taken off guard by the sudden close proximity of their bodies, she leaned her back against the bookcase and looked up at him. He lifted his arms so that his palms leaned against the shelf behind her, and offered her a look that caused her breathing to quicken.

"So are you gonna tell me your name, or do I have to guess what it is?"

"It's Erica." Her voice came out quieter than she'd expected, causing her to appear shy.

"That's a nice name. I like it."

"Thanks."

"I'm Cody."

"Nice to meet you."

"Likewise."

He broke their eye contact, allowing his gaze to drift upward. She guessed he was looking at a book behind her, but as he reached out and brushed a hand against the top top of her head, she instantly stiffened. It wasn't that she didn't like him touching her, because nothing could be further from that. It had just been so unexpected, and the slightest touch from him resulted in some very powerful feelings within her. He held his hand out for her to see, and as she glanced downward, she saw a tiny leaf sitting on his palm.

"It must have fallen in your hair when you were eating lunch."

"Yeah, I guess so." She nervously tucked a lock of hair behind her ear, wishing she could think of something better to say.

He allowed the leaf to fall to the ground, then ran his fingers through his dark, silky strands. The mere sight of it caused her heart to beat quicker, and she found herself wondering if he'd calculated that move just to see her reaction.

He looked at her for a few moments and then posed a question. "I don't scare you, do I?"

"No, of course not. Why would you?"

"You seem very nervous around me. Just a minute ago, when I pulled the leaf out of your hair, I noticed you shrink back a little. And your body visibly stiffened."

"I'm not scared at all. Maybe I am a little nervous, though."

"Why?"

She gave a little shrug.

His lips tugged into a faint smile. "There's no reason to be apprehensive around me. I'm a nice guy. Once you get to know me, you'll see that."

"I believe that. I get a nice vibe from you."

"Oh yeah?"

She nodded.

"I'm picking up good vibes from you as well. Energy is very important, you know. If you don't click instantly with someone, then it probably isn't worth your time."

"I agree."

As he shifted his weight, she caught the scent of his deodorant. Her gaze lowered, and as she noticed a loose thread on the neckline of his t-shirt, she felt the urge to reach up and snap it off. She didn't know what made her notice a small detail like that, but for some reason, her eyes had been drawn to it. With her gaze was planted in the vicinity of his neck, she caught a glance of the Native style choker he was wearing. The beautiful piece of jewelry seemed to enhance his already good looks, and she found herself tempted to reach out and touch the bone beads which made up the design.

But she didn't, instead allowing her eyes to admire the amazing craftsmanship. As she lifted her gaze, she noticed there was a small, crescent shaped scar next to his right eye. It was barely noticeable, and although it was an imperfection, it certainly didn't take away from his striking good looks. If anything, it actually made him even more appealing to her.

"What are you thinking?"

She was tempted to ask him about the scar, but figured it may seem a bit intrusive, so she decided against it. "What are *you* thinking?"

"I'm having a couple of different thoughts at the moment, but the main thing on my mind is when am I going to see you again?"

Her heart was hammering so quickly in her chest, she became certain that it would pop out at any moment. "Well that depends. Are you single?"

"Are you?"

"I asked the question first."

"I'm not currently in a relationship, but I am open to dating. I would very much like to have a girlfriend."

"Okay."

"So what about you? Are you dating anyone?"

"Nope."

"Well why not? You're a very attractive woman."

"I was in a relationship for a year, but the person I was seeing moved away. We tried the long distance thing for awhile, but it didn't work out, so we decided to just end things."

"Well whomever you were involved with is a fool for letting you go. It's good for me though, because it means I have a chance."

She cast her eyes downward and gave him a shy smile. Then she looked back up at him. "So are interested in serious or casual dating?"

"Well if I get to know a certain someone, and we build something special together, then I'd love for it to build up to a serious relationship. What about you?"

"I feel the same way. If I meet someone that I click with, then I'd like for things to gradually build up to something more serious."

"Sounds like we're pretty much on the same page."

"I guess we are."

Glancing at the clock on the wall, she saw there was only half an hour left before the bookstore closed, so she gently took the books from his hands and made her way to the cash register.

"There isn't much time before the store closes, so I'd better ring you up now."

She could feel him watching her as they walked toward the front of the store, and as they reached the counter, she set his books down and began to total up his purchases. As his receipt was printing, she heard a knock on the glass of the bookstore window, and turned her head to see two women excitedly waving. One was a brunette, and the other a redhead, who called out to him from beyond the glass.

"Hey, Cody." The darker haired woman's voice sounded muffled from beyond the barrier.

He offered a brief wave in return, then turned his attention back to Erica.

Her lips tugged into a little smile. "You seem to be a ladies man."

He chuckled lightly. "Do I?"

"Yep."

"Is that a bad thing?"

"It's not bad, but it's not exactly good, either."

"I love women, and I enjoy dating, but that doesn't mean I sleep around. I don't believe in sharing my body with just anyone."

"I see."

"You sound like you don't believe me. Just because I'm a man, doesn't mean that I'm not interested in having a well rounded relationship."

"I never said you weren't."

They maintained heavy eye contact for few moments, and then he leaned across the counter so that his face was a mere few inches from hers. "So if you think I'm a ladies man, then why don't you reform me?" His hair had fallen forward, creating a curtain around his face, and he gazed deep into her eyes with an intent look.

The scent of his shampoo wafted into her nostrils, and for a brief moment, she contemplated closing the gap between them, and pressing her lips to his in a kiss. "I'm not so sure I'd have the patience to do that."

"Well why not?"

"Trying to change somebody...it never works." She shook her head to emphasize her opinion.

He laughed lightly and grabbed the shopping bag from her. "I know you think I'm a player, but I'm actually the exact opposite. I'm a very loyal person, and once you get to know me, you'll see how I truly am."

She gave him a smile and followed him to the door so that she could lock it behind him. As he opened it, a warm summer breeze drifted by, carrying the scent of barbeque from a restaurant down the way.

"I'll be seeing you around. Enjoy the rest of your evening, Erica."

"You too. Take care." She watched him walk off into the night, and after locking the door, she headed back to the register and began to balance the till, a smile curving her lips as she did it.

****

Julia closed the back door of the bookshop and then locked it. Her shoes crunched against the gravel of the parking lot as she made her way to her red Toyota Corolla, and once she reached it, she unlocked the door and got inside. The scent of cherry car fragrance filled her nostrils, and after turning on the radio, she drove out of the lot and made her way towards home.

As she headed along the street, she found her thoughts drifting to Cody. He had a strong sexual magnetism, and there was something mysterious about him. And that hair-it was long and shiny and completely gorgeous. She could only imagine how pleasurable it would be to touch, allowing the silky strands to slip through her fingers.

Erica hadn't met many Native guys before, but she'd always been very attracted to them, and the fact that he was a window washer really intrigued her. It was one of those occupations that she knew existed, and yet she'd never met anyone who actually did it.

She was also curious as to what types of hobbies he had, because if he didn't mind dangling hundreds of feet above the ground on little more than a plank of wood and rope, she guessed that he must be involved in other types of fearless activities as well. She wondered how he'd gotten into that line of work, and how long he'd been doing it. There were a million things that she wished to know about him, and she hoped he would show up again at the bookstore.

She'd also been hoping that he'd ask her for her phone number, and was disappointed that he hadn't. He seemed to be the dominating, go-getter type, so she knew that he couldn't have been hesitant to ask her. As she pondered the reason why, she guessed that he could be waiting to ask her at a later date.

But why not ask for it up front, especially since they had such a strong connection? He obviously knew that she liked him, so maybe it was some sort of game he was playing. He probably wanted to build her anticipation, and make her wonder about it. He seemed like the type who might enjoy that type of thing.

She'd never been so curious about anyone before, and if she was this intrigued about him, she had to wonder just how many other woman out there felt the same way. Sure, he'd told her he was single, but that didn't mean he wasn't involved with any girls. A man that gorgeous couldn't possibly be spending all his time alone.

She thought back to the two women who had waved at him through the window, and began to wonder what his relationship with them was like. They were probably only one of many females who threw themselves at him on a daily basis, so what chance was there for her to have a stable, committed relationship with him?

Having arrived at her destination, she pulled her car into the RV park and drove along a short road until she reached her Airstream trailer. After putting the Toyota in park, she exited the car and made her way toward the door. It was an unconventional home, but she didn't mind it all. In fact, she loved living in an Airstream. She'd always been the adventurous type, and as a teenager she'd imagined herself traveling to all sorts of cool spots across the United States.

So when she'd spotted an ad in the newspaper for a renovated airstream, she'd taken the plunge and decided to try out RV living. Aside from her mother and a few of her cousins, most of her extended family found it weird that she'd chosen to reside in a silver aluminum tube, but she didn't care. She'd spent the past year and a half happily residing in the trailer, and didn't have plans to change her living situation anytime soon.

After unlocking the door, she climbed the steps and entered. She set her purse on the wrap around lounge seating, then slipped off her shoes and headed for the bathroom, enjoying the nice, cool feel of the bamboo flooring beneath the soles of her feet. Once she'd relieved herself, she headed for her sleeping quarters.

She parted the beaded curtain which partitioned off her bedroom, and opened the window behind her bed. With the temperature outside being in the low eighties, it didn't do much to ease her discomfort, but at least it would bring a bit of fresh air into the hot, stuffy RV. After stripping down to her underwear, she grabbed a paisley print sundress from out of her closet and slipped into it. Then she headed for the main living area so she could fix something to eat.

Feeling the need to get the air circulating, she switched on a small fan that sat next to the microwave. Then she bent down to open the fridge that was under the counter, and retrieved a plate of leftover breakfast food, as well as a can of root beer.

While it was warming in the microwave, she picked up a container of live crickets from off the counter and carried it over to a large aquarium tank. She bent down to look through the glass, and spotted her pet tarantula hanging out on a small rock.

"Hey Jimmy, how's it going?" Her breath ghosted against the glass of the tank as she spoke to her pet arachnid.

She carefully peeled the top off the container of crickets, then took one out with a miniature pair of tongs. After lifting the mesh top off the aquarium up, she dropped the cricket in. The insect hopped around for a few moments, wandering aimlessly around the tank, and then suddenly the tarantula rushed forward, incapacitating it in its grip.

Unable to stomach the sight of the spider eating it's prey, she turned away from the aquarium and plopped down on the L shaped couch, propping her feet up on the cushion. Having a pet tarantula was enjoyable, and she found them to be fascinating creatures, but she'd never liked having to feed them live crickets. She knew it was the necessary diet for her pet, but she still couldn't help feeling bad for the insects.

As she was waiting for her food to finish heating up, she kept herself entertained by reading a crime novel. It was a nice, thick book, something she could really sink her teeth into, and within a few short moments, she was fully engrossed in the murderous tale. A sudden knock on the door of Erica's trailer startled her out of her concentration, and as her shoulders jumped upward, she nearly dropped the book. Whipping her head around to see who it was, she recognized the visitor as Stevie, her mother.

"Hey pumpkin, I didn't scare you, did I?" Her tightly coiled, perfectly shaped ringlets bounced as she made her way up the stairs.

Erica's lips curled into a smile. "Just a little. But it's okay." She got up off the couch so she could offer a hug.

The scent of patchouli filled Erica's nostrils as they embraced, and she felt her mother's lips press to her cheek in a kiss.

"Something smells good. Whatcha cookin?" Her long, bohemian style dress floated behind her as she walked over to microwave, then bent down to see what was inside. "Looks like breakfast food."

"Yep. I made a tofu scramble earlier this morning, and had leftovers, so I figured it'd make a nice dinner."

The microwave beeped and Stevie took the food out, then opened the kitchen drawer to grab some silverware.

"So what's up with all these chopsticks? Do you have a ban against silverware, or something?"

"I read this article that using chopsticks forces you to eat slower, and since I inhale my food, I figured it might be a good idea to try it out for awhile."

"Yeah, I remember hearing about that. Never tried it myself, though. I'm terrible at holding those things." Finally locating a fork at the back of the drawer, she pulled it out for herself, then grabbed a pair of chopsticks for her daughter. She then joined Erica on the couch, and they contentedly munched on the tofu scramble.

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