Chapter One: Mission Ritual
The only sound in the dimming summer evening light inside the airplane hangar was his grunting and her moans and sighing. She was perched on her ass on the worn wooden desk off to the side of the two P-47 Thunderbolt fighter-bombers taking up most of the room in the hangar. A lightbulb hanging on a chain above the desk swayed back and forth in the breeze coming from the open hangar doors, the arc of the sway seemingly matching the rhythm of his thrusts inside her, as if he was gauging the coordination of the rhythm. And perhaps he unconsciously was, as his mind was only half there. She was the one who had wanted this. She had come to the hangar while he was waiting for something else entirely and had initiated the fuck.
Her full skirt and petticoats billowed around her waist. Her knees rested on his hips. Her hands clutched his bare buttocks, pulling him inside her with each jarring thrust. Her white cotton panties were on the concrete floor of the hangar, resting on top of his trousers and briefs, which were puddled around his ankles. Her calves were covered with rough, white cotton knee socks. He'd bought her sheerer stockings but she hadn't dared wear them anyplace yet. Her husband took her nowhere but the local pub and she hadn't come up with an excuse for owning them. They certainly weren't something that her husband could have given her. She put them on occasionally now and again while her husband was in his fields and she wanted to feel rich and decadent.
He held her in place on the edge of the desk with a hand on the small of her back. His other hand cupped a pendulous breast and thumbed the brown nipple couched in a nickel-sized aureole. He'd already pinched and prodded the other nipple as she was giving out little yipping sounds and while he was moving his bulb into position. He'd rubbed his cock head through her folds and over her clit until, through her heavy breathing, she'd reached down, put him in position, and pleaded, "Now. Now. Take me now," through clenched teeth.
He'd almost laughed at her adoption of the accent of some American actress or the other she had seen at the local cinema. This was all a movie drama for her, giving herself to the handsome, ill-fated American aviator on the eve of flying his last mission out over the English channel.
She'd arched her back, given a little cry, opened her eyes wide when he entered her—thick and hard. She doubled her panting and murmured, "Alex, Alex, Alex," as he held barely inches inside her, for her to take his measure and blossom open for him. He knew this was when he should utter her name too, but he suddenly couldn't remember what it was. Eleanor? Emily? Ellen?
Instead, he muttered, "Beautiful. You're so fine." This must have satisfied her, as he could sense the tension draining out of her and feel her go soft inside, spreading open for the shaft throbbing inside her. He reared back, thrust forward, giving her all of it. She screamed; dug her nails into his buttocks; flung her body about within the confines of his strong embrace; cried out, "Mercy, give me mercy," until, riding her hard and fast, she settled down to the rhythm, murmuring, "Yes, yes, yes. Oh, Alex, yes."
Five, maybe six minutes, and he had released his seed, pulled from her, smoothed the front of her skirt down, and rolled to the side to perch on the desk on his rump next to her. His nice-sized cock was still half hard, jutting out. He was young, healthy, and virile. He'd be able to go again within twenty minutes. Perhaps she knew that, as she reached over and wrapped a hand around the shaft. Before, this was when she would go down on her knees before him and take it into her mouth until he'd given her an after ejaculation and it had started to go flaccid.
But not this evening. After he'd offered her a Lucky Strike cigarette, she said, with a bit of regret, "I can't stay. There's a to do at the pub and Harvey will expect me to meet up with him there." She took the cigarette and lowered her head to the flame he produced from a lighter he retrieved from the desktop—another gesture she'd learned in an American movie, he knew. Lucky Strike cigarettes were American military ration and the designated cigarette of the fighter-bomber squadron that had named itself the Luckies.
Harvey was her somewhat dim husband, who worked a bit with the plane mechanics at the aerodrome and on his ancestors' small farm on the outskirts of Duxford the rest of the time. He was a good fifteen years older than she was, dull as a rock, and nothing close to being able to handle or satisfy her. She worked in the scheduling office at the aerodrome. Once she'd gotten off the farm, the future was sealed for her. If Alex hadn't succumbed to her needs and advances, it would be some other American flyer fucking her. After he was gone, it would be some other American aviator fucking her. It was like they had made it a club. They died their hair blonde and went to see American patriotic movies on Saturday night with their girlfriends and they suddenly were in a pool of women who opened their legs for the American aviators.
At least that's how he reasoned the situation. Not that he hadn't fucked another man's wife before—or, for that matter, some wife's husband. Alex was a modern man, and he was an American fighter-bomber pilot in the later stages of the Second World War. The first world war, originally termed the Great World War, had been fought to end all wars. They all knew better now—and they knew this war they now were in wouldn't be the last one either. He was painfully aware of the mortality rate in his chosen field. He wasn't one to pass up a fuck no matter what the origin—female or male. He just took on different roles, depending on who his sex partner was.
"That's a pity," he said, blowing a stream of smoke out. It was the best he could think of doing. He was still trying to work out her name. And she had just appeared this evening. He'd had other things to do, not the least being checking over Lucky Linda for tomorrow's bombing raid over Belgium. Lucky Linda was the name of his P-47, which he loved dearly—the fighter-bomber, not the namesake Linda, who had sent him a Dear John letter more than a year before. He'd been good up to that time—fighting for home and hearth and the honey left behind. She too had died her hair blonde as soon as war had been declared. Since his world had fallen apart, he'd been sewing his oats like there was no tomorrow—because maybe there wasn't. And that's when the young woman revealed the reason for her visit.
"You go up again tomorrow, don't you?"
"Yes," he answered.
"I hate this," she said. "We never know if they are going to come back. I can usually tell by the sound of you boys taking off when you'll be back—and I find myself outside, looking to the sky, counting the planes. There always are more going out than there are coming back."
"Yes," he said and took a puff on his Lucky Strike. This wasn't what he wanted to hear the night before a mission. Mentally, he was retreating from this. This wasn't what he wanted to think about; this wasn't what he wanted to be doing. She needed to shut up about it. He needed to fuck her quiet.
He covered the hand she had wrapped around his cock and used it to set them both in a stroking motion. His cock instantly came to life. He wanted her on her knees, in front of him, moving her mouth over the shaft. He wanted to experience la petite mort—the little death of orgasm—again, so he didn't have to think of the other form of death.
But he didn't want to force her to suck him off. He knew she'd do it if he pushed her to her knees. He knew why she was here now. She was here in case he didn't come back tomorrow. It was a "thing" with these English girls. Young women who never would have done this in other circumstances were giving themselves to the American airmen as some sort of connection to—service to—the war effort. Giving them a night-before fuck in case they didn't come back the next day. Gaining grieving status with their girlfriends if one of their boys didn't make it back. Suddenly given the regard that their girlfriends accorded to Ingrid Bergman on the big screen, which would last until an aviator some other woman was fucking didn't make it home. The longevity of grieving sympathy didn't go much more than a week in this phase of the war.
He hadn't had to force anyone—or seduce them—since he'd arrived here. They buzzed around him and the other American aviators like bees. They always came to him, begging for it. Well, nearly everyone.
"Where is it tomorrow?"
"Where is what?" he asked.
"Where do the planes fly?"
He was on his guard. Was there another motive here. She worked in the scheduling department. She probably knew as well as he did. But there was a "loose lips sink ships" security drive going on now. Was she here to give him a royal sendoff or to check on his discretion?
"I have no idea," he said. "They won't tell us until the mission meeting just before we take off." He wouldn't even tell her when the meeting was or when they were scheduled to lift off. God, he hated this war and its games.
She sighed and switched gears. "I can't face the thought of—"
"Elizabeth! Let's not think of that now. Let's just think of pleasure." With a shock that he'd thrown out a name and that she hadn't rejected it, he grabbed his cigarette out of his mouth and then hers, and dropped them, smoldering to the top of the wooden desk, it's surface already scared by hundreds of cigarettes before it. Then, rising from the desk and kneeing her thighs apart and pushing her skirt up to her waist, he embraced her, set his legs, and thrust inside her again.
She cried out, "Yes, yes, like there's no tomorrow!" and raised her ankles to his shoulders.
He plastered his lips to hers, more to stifle more of what he didn't want to hear from her, or anyone else, and sliced into her again and again and again—deeper and then deeper yet—to the cadence, once he'd gotten her mind off death and released her lips, of her cries of "Yes. Yes. Yes! God you're big!" He was big, and he knew it. It's one reason he had to flick them off like flies.
"Fuck me! You're a fucking god!" He was a fucking god, and he knew it. It was another reason he was a honey pot to the bees.
He was good and he knew it. He was a star, and he knew it. He might be dead tomorrow at this time—and he knew it.
She was Ingrid Bergman, desperate to give him one last fuck, turning her cow eyes on him, her lower lip trembling, and he gave her several inches of what she wanted to feel that her sacrifice to the war effort was noble and had meaning.
* * * *
Alex sat at the desk in the hangar under the swaying, dim light of a single fluorescent tube. Elizabeth, if that's what her name was, had left more than an hour before, puffed up and all aglow from having made what possibly was his last night on earth memorable. He wondered if she thought he'd be thinking of her as his plane nosedived into the English Channel. Well, she did have memorable tits, he thought. Those possibly were as good as anything else to think about when he knew he was going into the drink. But why fool himself? He knew he'd be thinking of someone else.
She wasn't what he'd been waiting for. She wasn't why he was spending the evening here in the hangar rather than at the flight club, chugging with the other aviators—well, the ones not being given farewell presents by the local girls. They weren't supposed to drink the night before a mission. They were supposed to be bright eyed and bushy tailed on mission day. That, at least, was him tonight. He was bright eyed as he hadn't touched a drop and Elizabeth, or whatever her name was, had bushed up his tail.
He stood up from the desk and walked over to his P-47 Thunderbolt, Lucky Linda. As he did every night or morning before he went up, he went through the ritual of running his hands over every square inch of his plane's fuselage. If he had a loving relationship with anything, it was this plane, Lucky Linda. When he got to the other side, he looked over at the other plane in the hangar. It was Pete's plane. Make Your Own Luck was painted on its side. All of the planes in the squadron had some form of "luck" in their title. Any who came into the squadron and refused to rename their plane to the squadron standard had gone down on their first mission out of Duxford, so it wasn't hard to enforce that custom anymore.
They were all captains, except for Major Flint, the squadron commander, but here, as about everywhere else in the world, there was a hierarchy. Peter Porter wasn't the longest-serving pilot in the squadron, but he unquestionably was the leader and, as the name he'd given his Thunderbolt hinted, the most cocky. He also was dominant, self-confident, and so "tall, dark, and handsome" that he was the honeyest of the honey pots.
Alex considered himself blest to have his plane in the same hangar as Pete's. They were as close in relationship as their planes were. Alex had been naïve and reticent. Pete, in full command, had sensed the vulnerability and need of this new, young flyer in the squadron. These all were factors that had paired the two of them up within the squadron—the dark and sultry, boisterous, flashy, and bossy Peter, scion of a leading textile manufacturing dynasty in Boston, and the blond, all-American Alex, son of a single-mom seamstress in Richmond. Alex had been the wettest of wet behind the ears when he'd reached England. Pete had brought him along and formed him into a gentleman to the point that the locals couldn't tell which was prince and which pauper.
Alex heard them before he saw them as he had finished the "hands-on" ritual with Lucky Linda and was strolling back to the desk. The "chug-song" drunken singing drifted in from afar and grew louder until the field ambulance—probably the stolen field ambulance—with young aviators hanging all over it pulled to a stop outside the hanger. The passenger door opened, and a dark hunk, half in and half out his Air Force uniform, his trousers on, but his shirt unbuttoned down to the navel, showing a dark-haired hirsute chest with bulging pecs and a flat belly, stumbled out, holding a champagne bottle.
Pete had arrived at the hangar. He turned and waved the ambulance away and then turned again and walked toward Alex. As he walked, he lost any awkwardness of a stumble. He may have been drunk while he was riding in the ambulance, if only to hold his position as the life of the party, but he was stone-cold sober as he walked toward the desk, his eyes boring into the figure of Alex, who had perched on the edge of the desk where he had been fucking the English woman earlier. Alex gave a little shudder as he watched Pete approach.
Pete turned when he reached Alex and sat, perched on the edge of the desk, beside Alex. They were sitting so close to each other that their thighs and biceps pressed together. Pete held the champagne bottle out to Alex.
"Here, drink," he commanded. His voice was soft, but Alex knew it wasn't a request. This was as much a ritual as the rubdown of Lucky Linda. This was Pete asserting dominance and Alex accepting submission. Alex hadn't allowed a drop of spirits pass his lips before he'd joined the squadron and come under the sway of Pete. Pete had made sure that Alex became a drinker as a mark of Alex's submission to him.
Alex took the bottle and drank deeply from it. After two swigs—he would have put the bottle down after the first wallow if Pete hadn't given him a "take another pull of it" look—Alex carefully set the bottle on the desk on the other side from where Pete was sitting. As he'd taken his drinks, Pete had taken out a package of Lucky Strikes and lit up two. He handed one to Alex and placed the other at a precarious angle between his lips.
"Where did you go this evening?" Alex asked. He tried to keep a note of desperation out of his voice, but they both knew that Pete had said that they would meet here hours earlier. It was yet another of Pete's techniques in control to have kept Alex waiting.
"Cambridge. The pubs in Duxford are boring—except for the ones we've been thrown out of." Cambridge was nine miles to the north of the aerodrome.
Pete's hand brushed against the two half-smoked cigarettes from Alex's encounter with the English woman that lay on the surface of the desk. They both would still be worn; one of them had lipstick marks on it. Pete gave Alex a questioning look.
"I think her name was Elizabeth," Alex responded to the unspoken question.
"The redhead in scheduling?" Pete asked.
"She's a good lay. Flaming red all the way down. I like a red muff."
"Yes. And nice tits too," Alex said.
"We should do her together. Take turns in the cunt and ass. Maybe do them together."
"I think she'd like that. Maybe tomorrow night." This too was a ritual—mentioning something they'd do in the future. Something they'd do after the next mission was over.
"But I guess I can't tomorrow," Pete said. "There's a party on I've been invited to—that American couple's place. Stanford Hall, toward Cambridge. The actor and his writer wife who were stranded here while he was making a film."
"The Taylors, yes," Alex answered. "Curt and Angela. I've been invited too. A garden party, I've heard. In the evening."
"Ah, you've been invited. The fabulous flyboys are we. I suppose we're the entertainment for the party. Have you had either one of them yet?"
"Curt or Angela? No, have you?" Alex answered.
"No, not yet, but there's always tomorrow. I think they're both in heat for it. They made that quite clear at the cricket club last week. They had sexual innuendo to throw your way too. Curt asked if you were a player and I said you were an American aviator, which seemed to settle that."
"Seems they are important enough that they can command that it not rain tomorrow," Alex said.
"Won't rain all day," Pete said. "That means the mission is definitely on."
"Yes," Alex said, but he looked away from Pete so that his friend and squadron buddy couldn't see the concern in his eyes. Alex had a feeling about tomorrow's mission. He didn't like it when he had a feeling like this before a mission. He became aware of the heat of Pete's body—his thigh and biceps—against his own, and he gave a little shudder.
Pete couldn't help but feel the trembling of the other man. He reached up and took the cigarette out of Alex's mouth and flicked it out into the shadows that had deepened between the desk and the fuselage of Lucky Linda. The P-47's wing tip almost reached them, giving an illusion of shelter and aloneness even though the hangar door to the summer night air in eastern England was still open. He flicked his own cigarette out in a perfect arc, and it landed on top of Alex's smoke.
The two men watched what was now a shared glow of ash produced by the cigarettes, one laying on top of the other, burning together, the flame brighter together than the two of them would have been separately—one covering the other. Alex felt the fingers of Pete's strong left hand run up into the blond curls at the back of his head, taking control of his head. Peter turned Alex's face toward his, leaned over, and took Alex's mouth in a brutal, fully possessing kiss.
Alex returned the kiss hungrily and placed his right hand on Pete's right bicep, running his hand into the opening of the other aviator's shirt so that he could feel flesh on flesh. He heard his belt buckle being undone and his trousers unbuttoned, and he raised his hips off the desk so that Pete could push his trousers down to the concrete. Alex kicked out of them as he listened to Pete's belt being unbuckled and his fly unbuttoned. Pete teased Alex's thighs open. The blond groaned as Pete entered him with a finger—and then another—spreading them to open Alex up and vibrating them to cause Alex to start moving his pelvis against them with a deep moan. There would be no more foreplay than this. Pete was thick and long, but he wanted to find resistance to his invasion, to sense the slow opening of surrender to him, the groaning whimper of his partner.