tagIncest/TabooPortraits of Summer

Portraits of Summer

byholliday1960©

"What are you reading?" she asked as she peered down at me with one hand on her hip.

I looked up from my book and gave her a blank stare. I knew she was no more interested in what I was reading than I was at the moment. I sighed and closed the cover, displaying it for her satisfaction.

"Goldman? 'The Lion in Winter' is one of my favorite Broadway plays," she remarked.

She took a bite of the apple she palmed and the audible crunch caused me to wince. It was one of those annoying little habits she had. From the time we were kids, she always crunched something with those pearly white teeth; apples, pears, crackers, ices cubes, Summer was driven to crunch things with her teeth.

Some women obsessively file their nails, while others twirl their hair. Summer crunched. If you counted the number of things she crunched through the course of one day, you might find yourself asking how she managed to maintain such a fabulous figure.

I eyed her with doubtful admiration. She always turned heads, but at twenty-eight, Summer was the type of woman who could cause a twelve-car pileup and keep right on walking. Amazingly, she never seemed to notice her effect on men. I found it disturbing that I was constantly reminded of the affect she had on me.

Summer was my twin sister, but it's unlikely you would know it by comparing the two of us. We were fraternal twins, born in the heat of mid-July. Our parents named us Sonny and Summer, a rather unfortunate joke on me.

Summer's name fit her to a 'T'. She had deep blue eyes and a stunning head of naturally golden-blonde hair. It was smooth and silky, cut evenly below her shoulders. My gaze inadvertently trailed downward to where her pelvis formed a 'Y' at her crotch. Like an eager schoolboy, I made a conscious attempt to catch a fleeting glimpse of honey-gold in that area as well.

Summer didn't seem to notice when I reopened the book and positioned it face-down over my lap. I felt heat flush my cheeks as I attempted to conceal the level of my interest. She perched on the overstuffed arm of the chair where I sat and placed one bare foot against the denim covered flesh above my knee.

She concentrated on the apple again, studying it and rolling it over in her hand before she nonchalantly asked, "Did you talk to Dad today?"

I grunted in response and sullenly pressed my hand to my jaw. I studied the one slender ankle attached to the foot she propped on my leg. Her toes curled against my jeans as she kneaded me like a cat pitter-patting with its claws. Her purple toe-nails scratched against the rough fabric in an aggravating way.

"What did he say?" she asked as she munched another bite of apple; its skin seemed to accentuate the dark color of her thick lower lip.

She tossed her hair over her shoulder and granted me an unobstructed view of both full breasts beneath the thin cotton nightshirt she wore. I drew in a deep breath as I noted her nipples standing erect. Frowning, I grasped her ankle and subdued the nails clawing at the leg of my jeans.

"The usual rah-rah speech," I shrugged dejectedly. "The 'Keep trying, son; you'll get it right someday' speech."

"Well, he's right, you know," she frowned. "He has faith in you, Sonny. We all do."

I snorted at her attempt to humor my wounded pride.

At twenty, after two years of college, I joined the military in an effort to follow in our dad's footsteps. Our father, a successful officer in the Air Force, recently retired from a lifetime of service. Everyone, including our dad, expected me to do the same, but after four years, I declined Uncle Sam's invitation to reenlist.

Military life wasn't for me. As a kid, I hated bouncing from one place to another, and as an adult, I hated it even more. I detested the hours and following inane orders; I abhorred the disciplined style of life.

As long as I could remember, I wanted to be either a writer or an artist. Not a journalist, but a novelist, or perhaps a screenplay writer. Two years of college did nothing to enhance my skills in that department either. My resume was extensive and growing by the minute.

I'd landed quite a few jobs, but none of them lasted. When I was canned from my last official position as a weekly column writer for a small-town newspaper, my refusal to return in defeat to my parents' home landed me on Summer's doorstep in south Florida.

By contrast, Summer was a well-rounded success; it goes without saying, she was well-rounded in all the appropriate places.

She earned a Master's degree in English with a minor in Creative Writing. Not only was she the published author of a series of children's books, but she elbowed her way into the fashion industry as both a runway and a commercial-print model when she was still in college.

Despite her age, Summer maintained the look and the poise required for modeling. Miami had a market for women like Summer; they doted on tall, tanned, beautiful blondes.

"I think I need a drink," I grumbled as I lifted her foot from my lap and placed it firmly on the floor. I wandered to the bar and poured myself a stiff Johnny Walker on the rocks.

"Would you care for anything?" I offered dully.

Summer wrinkled her nose and shook her head.

"Not scotch. I'll make us a pitcher of Margaritas if you promise to help me drink it," she replied.

I downed the scotch and meandered through a set of French doors onto the deck. In the darkness, a cool ocean breeze rattled the palm fronds overhead, and Summer's passion, a row of wind-chimes suspended from the eaves, played a tinkling tune.

In the distance, the sound of rolling waves crashed against a sand beach with an accompanying rhythm. Summer called the combined chaos 'the angel's waltz'. Somehow, she found beauty in everything, even stormy days seemed brighter through Summer's eyes.

I half seated myself on the handrail, resting one buttock there as I looked towards the water and swirled the melting ice in my glass. I took a deep breath of fresh ocean air and sighed.

There was a faint scent of hibiscus on the salty breeze and something more. I closed my eyes and sniffed again. Citrus, I thought. Perhaps a few late blooming oranges from some nearby neighbor's yard.

Summer joined me on the deck, bearing a tray with two large frozen drink glasses.

"Here we go! Just like old times," she exclaimed as she gently clinked her glass against mine.

She also half-mounted the rail and faced me in the dark. She gave her hair a toss and took a deep breath.

"Isn't it marvelous out here at night? We should have dinner here. Lobster Thermidor and steamed snow crab," she suggested with enthusiasm.

I snorted at the idea. "Who's going to cook?"

Summer's skills didn't include cooking. She could barely manage to scramble an egg without scorching it. I pondered for a moment the irony that most unattached men were proficient in the kitchen, while single females remained dependent on microwavable cardboard cartons and take-out food.

"Don't be such an old grouch!" she admonished. "I'll talk Joachim into cooking for us one night. He'll do it. He owes me a couple of favors. Maybe you could invite someone, and we'll make it an intimate little dinner party for four."

In the two months since I arrived in south Florida, I managed to meet a few dozen people, most of whom were friends of Summer, and none of whom I had any real interest in knowing any better. The feeling appeared mutual, because the type of friends Summer collected showed little interest in an unsuccessful freelance writer, even if he was Summer's brother.

"That sounds positively peachy, Sis," I replied with sarcasm. "I'll just check my catalogue of romantic interests and see who's available."

"Oh, that reminds me! Do you think I could borrow you again this coming Saturday?" Summer asked as she suddenly bounded to her feet.

I was already frowning and I hadn't heard any details of her proposition yet.

"I have this thing...it's a late cocktail party," she began with enthusiasm. "A lot of the who's who are going to be there and I haven't managed to find a date yet."

"It will give me an opportunity to introduce you to my publisher," she added slyly.

Summer not finding a date was like a bee not being able to produce honey. For the past sixty days, and for all outward appearances, I had been dating my sister exclusively, acting as her official escort to every social event in town. At this point, it was downright embarrassing, but Summer couldn't quite seem to grasp the level of my personal humiliation. The dismal silence that ensued her request should have been hint enough.

"Come on, Sonny. Please say, 'yes'. It'll be fun. You'll see," she coaxed.

"We should light the tiki-torches," she mused as an afterthought. "Help me."

She reached for a box of wooden matches from the patio table and fumbled with an attempt to light the torches on her own. The wind promptly extinguished the flame and she gave me a look of exasperation. I couldn't help but grin at her ineptness. Summer was most appealing when she was helpless.

"Matches aren't going to work in this wind," I declared with a disparaging shake of my head. I rose to my feet and headed towards the kitchen.

"Hold on, I'll be right back."

By the time I returned, she'd abandoned her quest and sat sprawled in one wrought iron chair, while her feet rested on the seat of another. Her glass was nearly empty, as was mine, and I refilled them both from the pitcher I retrieved while in the kitchen. I set about lighting the torches around the deck while I gave some thought to her earlier request.

"What's so important about meeting your publisher?" I asked over my shoulder as I lit the last lantern.

"I don't have anything new written to show him, and all my old pieces have already been turned down by most of the notable publishing houses," I pointed out.

"He isn't a he; he's a she. And, I wasn't implying you should submit anything to her. I just thought you might like to meet her," she shrugged with an air of indifference. "In a way, she's your publisher, too, since you did the illustrations for me. I just thought you might like to meet the person who signs your royalty checks."

Facing her in the flickering firelight, my irritation returned. It was true. I had sketched the illustrations for her last two publications. Drawing was a hobby of mine, and when Summer began reading her children's stories to me, I absently made a few sketches based on her description of the characters. Summer and her editor liked them well enough they proposed I illustrate the remaining books in the series. I agreed because I enjoyed drawing and even I had to admit that my sketches were far better than her last illustrator's were.

As for the royalty checks, the amounts were dismal, barely enough to pay my portion of the living expenses. I managed on my savings, and the profits from a few wise investments in the stock market, but I had no steady income to call my own. Still, I was grateful for the royalties her books brought me. Without them, and without Summer to lean on, life could have been a hell of a lot worse. But, to the people Summer associated with, it must have looked as if I was a kept man.

"She's your publisher, not mine, and I'm sure she's been kicking herself in the ass for not meeting me before now," I quipped more sharply than I intended.

"Come on, Sonny. Just meet her, for Christ's sake! Mel's a nice lady and you just might find you like her," Summer argued.

"Mel?" I asked with a squint of suspicion. The image of Mel as an overweight, middle-aged, cigar-smoking grandmother sprang into my head.

"Her name is Melanie, but everyone just calls her 'Mel'. I think it's kind of cute," she sniffed indignantly.

"Well, what does Mel look like?" I dubiously inquired.

"If you're curious, you'll just have to come with me Saturday night and you can find out for yourself," Summer ventured tentatively.

She was treading lightly around the subject. So far, most of Summer's friends had been pure knock-outs, but I was highly skeptical about publishers named 'Mel'. At that point, I needed more incentive than Summer was giving me to even consider the idea; wading into the Everglades at night had just about as much appeal.

I gazed at Summer silhouetted in the flickering torchlight, her hair blowing in the summer breeze and I hatched a plan to counter her offensive maneuver.

"I'll make a deal with you, Sis. I'll go with you this weekend on one condition."

Summer tilted her head and narrowed her eyes at me. "What condition?" she asked suspiciously.

My gaze trailed along her silky-smooth legs. Her knees were slightly parted and it gave me a fleeting glimpse of the white crotch of her panties. A small thrill for a teenaged boy, perhaps, but there was no justification for the immediate spark it ignited in my imagination.

"Pose for me," I said firmly. I folded my arms across my chest and leaned against the railing with a strong stance. It wasn't the first time I'd made the request. We argued often over the years, but Summer always refused.

She lowered her feet from the opposite chair and scooted forward while shaking her head adamantly.

"Oh, no...uh-uh! Not me, Sonny. I haven't forgotten the last time I agreed to pose for you. We were fifteen and that sketch you did got us both grounded for the entire summer!" she protested.

I flashed her a devilish grin.

"To this day, Mom still doesn't believe I didn't pose nude for you!" she proclaimed with a half-hearted laugh.

"We're not going to dredge that history up again," she said while still flatly shaking her head in denial.

It was only a foolish childhood prank, and it should have been harmless enough, except our mother found the sketch in my room. Summer had been completely clothed when she agreed to pose for me. I simply used my skill and a little imagination to alter the drawing.

Mom convicted us both without the benefit of a fair trial, and Dad meted out the punishment; he pronounced a non-negotiable three months of restriction. I couldn't help but notice that Dad studied the sketch for quite a long time before he passed sentence.

Regrettably, our parents confiscated the drawing, one of the best I'd ever done, and it had never resurfaced. Presumably, our mother burned it. The punishment might have been worth it if I'd at least been allowed to keep the drawing.

"Well..." I sighed, "if that's your final word on it, I guess Mel will have to do without the pleasure of my company Saturday night." I tucked my chin to my chest and put on my best posture of dejection.

"Don't you dare try to guilt-trip me into agreeing to that, little brother!" Summer huffed in response. Summer was all of seven minutes older than I was, but it gave her some satisfaction to call me her 'little brother' whenever she felt I was trying to take advantage of her.

"Me? Try to guilt-trip you?" I asked innocently with my hands spread wide. "Do you really think I would try to do something like that after all you've done for me?" I asked, spreading it on thick.

"I wouldn't even have a place to stay if it weren't for you, Sis. Look at this place! I'm living in the lap of luxury because of you," I insisted. I turned my gaze to the deck beneath us.

"I'd probably be sleeping in some run-down tenement house, eating beanie-weenies from a can instead of Lobster Thermidor and Snow Crab. Maybe sipping a cheap bottle of Boone's Farm wine..." I said letting my voice trail pitifully away. I could sense she was wavering by her silence. "I probably wouldn't even have qualified for unemployment," I added for good measure.

"Oh, Sonny...it's not that bad. You'd have found another job eventually," she said with compassion.

She crossed the deck and hugged me close to her. I lay my forehead against her shoulder as if I was about to cry. She patted my back and gave my hair a few strokes. Summer was easily manipulated. I smothered my urge to chuckle against the crook of her neck and she must have assumed I was crying because she sighed heavily before asking, "Does it mean that much to you?" I nodded against her shoulder. "Well..." she began slowly.

My head instantly jerked up. "Then you'll do it?" I prodded with excitement.

"Goddamn it, Sonny! You're such an ass sometimes," she hissed as she swiped at me with both hands and shoved me away.

I grasped her wrists and placed them tightly against my chest. At six-foot-two, I could still look down at her, and I gave her an irresistible grin of satisfaction.

"You're never going to learn, are you?" I asked smugly.

She shoved me away, more insistently the second time, and made a low growl of discontent in her throat. She stalked towards the open French doors as I danced exuberant circles around her.

I waved my arms wildly and bounced about.

"This is going to be great, Sis! I promise, I won't get in your way at all! You won't even know I'm there," I insisted with pure joy. I flung myself down on the sofa and propped my heels on the edge of the coffee table. I threw my hands behind my head and laced them together.

"Imagine! A whole week of having my own private model," I heaved breathlessly.

"A week!" Summer hissed. "You didn't say anything about a week," she suddenly protested.

"Well, it's not quite a full week," I conceded with a shrug. "Just from now until Saturday, right?" I cautiously suggested.

"Sonny, I can't spend the whole week posing for you!" she insisted in exasperation.

"You can't?" I asked, my eyes wide with surprise. She shook her head emphatically.

"No, I certainly cannot!" she asserted with her hands on both hips.

I placed my palm to my forehead and groaned. "I think I'm gonna be sick...Saturday," I said in a near whisper. "I feel it now. By Saturday night, I won't even be able to get out of bed," I moaned and closed my eyes.

I felt a breeze stir as she flounced past me and a soft throw-pillow smacked me squarely in the face.

"I'm going to bed!" she snapped as she disappeared down the hall. I chuckled and hugged the pillow to my chest.

*****

Despite being unemployed, I was still in the habit of rising early. Summer kept odd hours because she was working fulltime, and I, because I wasn't working at all. When I wandered onto the deck with a mug of fresh, hot coffee, I wasn't surprised to find Summer already up and about.

The morning sun was above the eastern horizon and it made a glorious backdrop for the lithe figure of my sister who was jogging along the water's edge. I watched from a distance with a wide grin as her tits bounced with each small hopping-step she took. I made a large sweeping gesture with one arm through the air to gain her attention. I knew she saw me, but she ignored my waving and trotted on past as if she had no clue I was there.

Momentarily, I was rewarded with the rear view of her scantily clad backside as she made her way north along the shore. Summer looked fantastic in a white string-bikini. I could see why she was still in high demand for commercial print ads. I leisurely sipped my coffee and watched her disappear down the beach. I would have plenty of time to finish it before she returned.

Summer had a morning fitness routine she followed. She jogged for a mile or two every morning. She followed it with a strenuous swim which lasted a full half-hour before she sprawled out on a towel and sunned herself while she rested. This morning, I would be waiting with my sketchpad when she hit the sand.

I'm not certain why I wanted to sketch her so badly, but she'd been an obsession of mine since we were kids. Summer had a look about her that made her the perfect subject. Photographers fought for the opportunity to photograph her. I was no different; what they captured on film, I was determined to capture on paper and canvas. To me, she was like the Mona Lisa, an artist's dream come true.

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byholliday1960© 46 comments/ 72336 views/ 111 favorites

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