Tattoo of Love Ch. 08byvirgofemme©
*Thank you all for your continued support, and I hope you enjoy this chapter!*
Rolling over to glance at the clock on her bedside table, Julia groaned at the red letters which were displayed upon the screen. It was only two fifteen in the morning, yet judging from the sounds which came from the living room, Sage was engaging in a session of loud sex. As passionate moans and loud grunts floated through her door, Julia rolled her eyes and placed a pillow over her head.
That, however, did little good to drown out the sounds of her step-sister's carnal relations, so she reached her arm out and flipped the switch on top of the radio. As an oldies song floated from the speaker, she concentrated on the words and tried to direct her attention to more pleasant thoughts. Julia hoped that the sound of the music would drown out the unpleasant noise, but to her amazement it seemed as if the sounds of their erotic coupling grew even louder.
She couldn't believe that her step-sister was so brazen as to invite a strange man into the apartment, and the amount of noise she was making told Julia that Sage was completely unconcerned with her reaction to it.
Filled to the brim with irritation, she began fishing through her bedside drawer for a pair of headphones she kept there. After a few moments of fruitless searching, Julia suddenly remembered that she'd lent them to Sage a few days ago, and exhaled a sound of frustration at their unavailability.
Julia kept her head buried beneath the pillow for what seemed like an hour, but as the groans and lustful cries continued, she realized that they most likely had no plans of completing their sexual union anytime soon.
Bemoaning deeply beneath the pillow, Julia hoped they would finally grow tired and finish up their libidinous activities, but as the sounds continued on, she realized it was going to be a long night ahead of her.
* * * *
Julia awoke in the morning with tired, red eyes and a painfully stiff neck. Her head had been cocked in an odd position during sleep, and the sound of her step-sibling's coital activities had caused her to lose over three hours of much-needed rest. Sage's ear-piercing cries had continued until just before four a.m., and by that time Julia was left with little more than an hour before she had to wake up for work. Having been completely exhausted by the lack of sleep she'd gotten, Julia slept in half an hour past the time she usually woke up.
With the time now at half past five, Julia only had thirty minutes to spare before she was due at the bakery, which meant that she had to hurry up and get ready before she ended up being late. Throwing the covers off her, she rose up out of bed and headed for the bathroom. After washing her face and brushing her teeth, she slipped into a pair of jeans and a long sleeved v-neck top. Once she banded her hair into a ponytail and grabbed her purse, she exited the bedroom.
The rich smell of frying bacon infiltrated her nostrils as she entered the living area, and she noticed that the air was hazy with smoke. As she headed for the kitchen, Julia began to internally plan out what she was going to say.
Four days had now passed since Sage first arrived, and Julia was beginning to feel quite antsy about her step-sister still hanging around. It seemed that with each day that passed, she became more comfortable with living in Julia's apartment, and it was pretty apparent that she had no plans of leaving anytime soon.
She'd made several attempts to question Sage about when she was planning on vacating the apartment, but her polite nature made it difficult for her to convey her unhappiness with her unwelcome visitor. Sage's behavior last night, however, now gave her a perfectly solid reason to demand that Sage find another place to stay, because she wasn't going to put up with anymore unpleasant, awkward situations.
As she entered the kitchen, she was brought to an abrupt stop by the sight of a tall, nude man cooking at the stove. Clad in only a black fedora, his pale, flat buttocks were on display for her. As her eyes landed upon them, she spotted an oval shaped birthmark on the left cheek, and she dreadfully realized who he was.
With a spatula in one hand and a cigarette in the other, he was merrily humming a tune to himself. His back was to her so he was unaware that he was being watched, and as Julia observed him, she felt strong discontent rising within.
"What are *you* doing here?" she demanded.
As Digby turned to face her, his eyebrows rose in surprise and he said, "Oh hey there, Julia. So you live here too, huh?" The tone he used was casual, as if it was perfectly normal for him to be standing in her kitchen stark naked.
Her gaze roved over his pretty boy features and as his icy blue eyes fixed upon her, she became filled with the utmost annoyance. Averting her gaze from his nether regions, she shielded her eyes and irritatingly asked, "Can you please cover that thing up?"
Offering her a half smile he replied, "Sure thing." Grabbing an apron from off the oven door handle, he wrapped it around his waist and then tied it in place. "Better?"
Turning her gaze back upon him she asked, "Where is Sage?"
His eyebrow furrowed as he responded, "Sage? I thought her name was Cassandra." Some of the bacon grease dripped off of the spatula in his hand, landing on the linoleum floor.
Giving an exasperated sigh, Julia exited the kitchen and searched the living room for her step-sister. After seeing that the bed in the loft was empty, she walked back into the kitchen so that she could question Digby.
"Was she here when you woke up this morning?"
"We never really went to sleep," he hinted with a salacious grin upon his face.
Rolling her eyes she responded, "Just answer the question."
Realizing she was in no mood for jokes he replied, "She just stepped out for a bit to pick something up from the store."
"And she left you here *alone*?" Shaking her head in disappointment she uttered, "Unbelievable."
Having reached the peak of her aggravation, Julia stormed out into the living room and made a beeline for the window. She parted the curtains so she could study the street below, and then grabbed her cell phone from her purse. Her fingers were just plugging in Sage's number when she heard the sound of footsteps climbing the stairs to her apartment.
Slipping her mobile back into her purse, Julia crossed her arms in front of her chest and anxiously awaited her step-siblings arrival. Her eyes were planted firmly upon the entryway, waiting for the moment when Sage would first enter. As the door opened and her step-sister's face came into view, Sage offered her a look of surprise.
Ignoring her greeting, she immediately began to air her grievances.
"You've got a lot of nerve leaving that man here alone in my apartment."
"I didn't leave him alone. You were in your bedroom sleeping."
"Oh, right, so I guess that makes it okay, huh?"
"What's the big deal? It's not like he's an axe murderer or something."
"The point is that he's not welcome here. You know how I feel about him."
Furrowing her eyebrow, Sage replied, "What are you talking about? He's just some random guy I met in a bar."
Julia narrowed her eyes at her step-sister. "Oh come on, Sage. You knew that Digby was my ex-boyfriend."
"No, actually I didn't," she retorted.
"I've spoken to you about him over the phone, and I told you all about his band."
"Yeah, but how was I supposed to know that he was the one you had history with? I didn't even know what he looked like."
Ignoring her excuse Julia stated, "You *knew* who he was when you picked him up."
"I did *not*," Sage reaffirmed.
Shaking her head in disbelief she said, "I can't believe you actually had the nerve to pull a stunt like this. And the worst part of it is that you left him here while you went off to run your little errand. What the hell is the matter with you?"
Offering her a look which clearly conveyed her belief that her step-sibling was overreacting, Sage responded, "Look, I just went to the store to pick a few things up, okay? I'm sorry if I upset you, and I promise it won't happen again."
"You're damn straight it won't, because you're finding another place to crash."
"Oh come on, Julia. Don't kick me out."
"You disrespected my living space so you have to go," Julia firmly stated.
"I said I was sorry."
Walking past her step-sister so that she could go to the closet, Julia retrieved her jacket from a hanger and slipped into it, then began rummaging around in her purse.
Glancing up to address Sage, Julia said, "I was up half the night, and thanks to your little rendezvous, I only got a few hours of sleep."
"The only reason I brought him home was because I thought you'd be cool with it."
"Yeah, listening to someone have loud sex for hours on end is something i'd be totally okay with," she said in a voice which was dripping with sarcasm. With a look of disgust on her face she added, "You were screeching like a banshee."
An expression of annoyance crossed Sage's face. "Why are you being so uptight about this? You used to be so easy going and fun."
Julia lifted an eyebrow. "Uptight?" Releasing a scoff she continued, "You brought my ex-boyfriend home and had sex with him in my living room."
With a shrug of her shoulders she replied, "Just why does that matter so much to you? You're no longer with him, so what do you care?"
A look of absolute disbelief was plastered upon Julia's face. "It's a matter of decency, okay?"
"Look, i'm sorry about all of this, but I promise you that I didn't know who he was when I picked him up."
"Yeah, right," came her snappy reply.
"Come on, Julia. Please don't kick me out."
"You've been here for five days now. That's one day past the time that you said you were going to leave."
"But I don't have anywhere else to go."
"You can stay with mom and Dave," she flatly replied.
Expelling a sound of exasperation Sage responded, "I already told you, I don't want to stay with them. That whole scene they have going on at their house is really weird."
Pulling her shoulders into a shrug Julia replied, "Well that's not my problem, and it doesn't look like you have many other options right now."
Having finally located her keys, Julia pulled the door open and gestured towards outside. The look which was plastered upon her face silently conveyed that the time had come for her step-sister to leave.
Making a last ditch effort to smooth things over, Sage said, "Please don't kick me out. I'm going through a difficult time in my life right now, and I just need a bit of support, okay?"
With a serious expression upon her face Julia replied, "You have other places to stay. Whether or not you choose to go there is your decision."
Realizing that her step-sibling wouldn't relent, Sage said, "Fine, i'll leave." Heading towards her travel bags on the floor, she began to made a dramatic display of stuffing her belongings back in.
"Oh, and i'm going to need my keys back," said Julia.
Grabbing her purse from the coffee table, Sage reached into it and grabbed them, then tossed them in her step-sister's direction. They hit the floor with a loud jangle, and Julia bent down to retrieve them, then slipped them into the pocket of her jacket.
"You have no right to be mad at me, you know. You were the one who messed up," stated Julia.
"Yeah, whatever," Sage countered. "I make one little mistake and you throw me out. I was only asking to crash here a few more days, but you can't even allow me that."
In a sarcastic tone of voice she replied, "Yeah you're right, i'm completely overreacting. I guess it would be a good idea to allow you to continue staying here with me. That way you can have access to my boyfriend and try to screw his brains out too, right?"
Throwing daggers with her eyes Sage coldly replied, "You have no right to speak me to me that way. You are such a bitch!" Slipping a pair of designer sunglasses on, she grabbed her bags and headed for the door in a huff.
As she passed by her step-sibling, Sage icily uttered, "So long, sis. It's been *great* visiting you.
Having gotten dressed in a pair of pants and a t-shirt, Digby sauntered toward the door with a cigarette still in hand. As he offered Julia a nod goodbye, his lips creased into a pleased smile, as if he'd enjoyed the dramatic interaction between the two women. Then he crossed the threshold and followed Sage downstairs.
She watched from the front door as Sage threw her bags into the trunk, then walked around to the driver's side door. She was about to get inside when Digby grabbed her by the arm, causing her to pause and engage in conversation with him.
Julia didn't know what they were talking about, but Sage's stiff body language and wild hand gestures suggested that the words which he'd spoke had angered her. Placing her palm against his chest, she gave him a rough push backward, then got inside the car and slammed the door behind her.
As she pulled out of the driveway Digby gave her the finger and then stormed out of the driveway, heading on down the sidewalk. Turning her gaze back upon Sage's car, Julia watched as it backed out of the driveway and turned onto the street. Then it began to accelerate and continue along its path, racing towards an unknown destination.
As soon as it was completely out of sight, she felt a wonderful sense of freedom and relief come over her. She had no idea what all the drama between Sage and Digby had been about, but she wasn't about to let it occupy her mind. The apartment was solely hers to enjoy once again, and she no longer had to endure the annoying habits and unpredictability of her step-sister.
Glancing at her watch, Julia saw that she only had ten minutes to get to the bakery, so she closed the door and locked it behind her. Then she rushed down the stairs and headed for her car. Reaching her VW bug, she unlocked the door and got inside. As she drove towards the end of the driveway she glanced towards the direction which Sage had driven off in.
With her step-sister now gone, Julia felt a definite lift in her spirits. Yet she couldn't shake the nagging feeling that the situation between she and her step-sibling hadn't yet reached a definite end.
* * * *
As Nolan aimed the lens of his camera at her, Julia turned her head and hid her face, burying it in the pillow on the couch.
Lowering the camera so it was no longer facing her, he asked, "Why won't you let me take a picture of you?"
Placing her attention back upon him she responded, "Because I look terrible, that's why."
"Not to me, you don't."
"Come on Nolan, I was up half the night. I've had a trying day at the bakery, and i'm not in the mood right now. There's no way i'm going to allow you to take a photo of me when I look like this."
"But it's for my eyes only. Nobody else will ever have to see it."
"I still don't want you to take it."
Setting the camera down on the coffee table, he encircled his arm around her waist and pulled her in closer to him.
"Don't you know how beautiful I think you are?" His eyes gazed lovingly into her own.
"Yes," She softly replied.
"So let me photograph you."
"I'd rather you do it when I'm looking my best. I hardly have any makeup on right now."
"You don't need makeup."
"Well what about these bags under my eyes? They look horrible."
A little smile curved his lips as he said, "You're coming up with a lot of excuses for me to not take your picture. I could have snapped a few shots of you by now and already been done with it."
Placing her palm against his chest, she began to pick at a loose thread on the collar of his t-shirt. "I don't understand why you'd want to take my photograph when I look so tired and worn out."
"Do you think that all i'm seeing right now are your so-called flaws?" His eyebrows furrowed a bit as he questioned her.
"Well, yeah. It's pretty obvious that i'm not looking so great."
Stroking his fingers along her cheek he said, "The best photographs are often taken when one is unprepared. I'd much prefer photographing you like this, rather than all made up and perfectly put together."
"Why? I thought you liked it when I look nice for you."
"Well of course I do but when it comes down to it, I just really enjoy looking at you. I like studying your face."
Offering him a pleased smile she said, "I didn't know my face was interesting enough to study."
"Well now you do." The hand around her hip slid beneath the waistband of her jeans, sensually tracing the curve of her hipbone. "Of course I also take pleasure in giving my attention to this beautiful body of yours."
All it took was just the mere touch of his flesh upon her own and it instantly drove her crazy. As he leaned in to kiss her neck, she felt his warm breath ghost against her skin, and she offered a shiver of desire.
As his mouth parted from her flesh he asked, "So, how about letting me take that picture now?"
She remained quiet for a few moments as if mulling it over and then said, "I'd really rather you not."
Expelling a small chuckle he said, "You can be quite stubborn when you want to, can't you?"
Lying her head upon his chest she replied, "I suppose." Then she gave a yawn and snuggled in closer to him.
Tenderly stroking her hair he asked, "Sleepy?"
"Mmm, a little," she murmured. "Guess I should head home and get some rest."
Uttering a sound of discontent he said, "I don't want you to go. Why don't you spend the night with me?"
"I'd like to, but I kind of feel nervous about leaving my apartment unoccupied all night."
"Why? You said she left peacefully, right?"
"So what are you worried about? Are you afraid she'll come back and burn the place down, or something?"
Although there was a joking tone to his voice, Julia couldn't help but to contemplate his statement for a few moments. "No, I doubt she'd go that far. I just have this nagging feeling."
Offering a look of concern he asked, "Is she a vindictive type of person?"
"Not that I know of, but if she's mad at someone she can really hold a grudge for quiet a long time." She was quiet for a few moments and then continued speaking. "Still though, it's kind of weird that i'm feeling so nervous over this whole situation."
"Hmm, well try not to worry too much about it, okay? I'm sure that everything will be just fine."
Snuggling up closer to him she replied, "I sure hope so." They were both quiet for a few moments and then Julia spoke once again. "I'm so looking forward to having a peaceful night's sleep tonight. It was pretty difficult staying alert at work today."
"Yeah, I bet. Sorry you had to go through that terrible ordeal. They must have been really loud to have kept you up all night."
"You have no idea." Groaning at the memory of her step-sister's sexual rendezvous, she covered her eyes with her hands and said, "Oh great, now those horrible visuals are popping back into my head again."
"So you actually saw them going at it?" Nolan questioned in surprise.
Uncovering her eyes so she could look at him, she replied, "Oh heck no. I only heard them, but that was more than enough for me to unwillingly form pictures in my head."
Offering a little snicker he sympathetically responded, "You poor thing." His palm slid across the fabric of her top, then came to a rest upon the mound of her right breast. He gave it a light squeeze and then offered a seductive statement. "If you sleep over here tonight, I promise to make you forget all about yesterday evening."
As his finger bumped across her nipple, it instantly responded to his touch, creating a stiff peak beneath the fabric of her top.
"I'd love to stay over, but with you by my side I probably won't get much rest at all."