tagRomanceThe Perfect Pieces Ch. 05

The Perfect Pieces Ch. 05


Author's note: Chapter 5 of 13. Thank you Tim413413 for selfless editing.

The Perfect Pieces - Chapter 05

"We'll start you with a suncatcher," I said excitedly. We were in my workshop and I had a willing apprentice. It didn't hurt that she was also gorgeous and liked the Grateful Dead. I went to the file cabinet where I stored patterns. I was way past using store-bought myself, but never threw them away. Sometimes they even offered ideas, things I hadn't thought of myself. I pulled out the simple ones, where the cuts weren't too complex and the project could be completed somewhat quickly. Nothing is worse than not getting that sense of completion on your first attempt.

"Okay," Amber agreed. She stood by my side as I spread out a bunch of patterns on the table. She picked a few to examine more closely. "I think I like this one," she said, holding up a flower pattern with five, almost heart-shaped, petals. Her smile told me she had cemented her decision.

"Now you need to choose your glass," I said.

"Already," she said surprised, "no lessons or anything."

"The best way to learn is to do it," I informed her as I moved to the boxes that held my glass. Some of the glass I had ideas for. Things I was going to make that would be difficult to part with. I looked at Amber's inquisitive face, those wonderful lips and I remembered how her eyes looked in the shower. Screw it, she was worth more than any idea. "Pick out the glass you want to use for the petals and the center," I said, waving my hand over all the boxes. The ideas fled for the moment. I could always find more. I pulled one box over on a whim. "There's a bunch of purplish glass in this one."

"For Lizzy," Amber said with a determined tone.

"For Lizzy," I agreed, nodding. Amber started going through the glass, pulling out and examining some of the sheets more closely before placing them carefully back in the box. I saw her eyes light up when she saw a foggy white sheet with smoky waves of purple meandering through. She had a good eye.

"Can I use this one?" she asked. Her smile already paid me for it. I had had visions of using it as the higher portion of a sunrise scene. Her smile was worth a hundred sunrises. I had never had something supersede my art before. It was a phenomenal change.

"It will be perfect," I answered. She was giddy when she kissed me. She wasn't feigning interest for my benefit. She was truly excited which, of course, increased my excitement.

"What do I do next," Amber prompted.

"You have to decide how get five petals out of it," I said, leading her over to one of the work tables where I usually cut my glass. I grabbed a piece of scrap glass on the way to give her something to experiment with first. "When you cut, you have to go from one edge to another and you can't make your curves too tight. It's not like using scissors," I instructed as I pulled out a cutter and uncapped a small well of oil. I dipped the cutter in the oil, placed the scrap on the table and scored the corner about an inch deep. "That crackly sound means you're doing it right. You don't have to push too hard, just listen for the sound." I grabbed some glass pliers and snapped off the corner easily, exactly where it was scored. I put the scrap back down on the table and handed Amber the cutter. "Your turn."

I was surprised when she dipped the cutter in the oil first. Usually, a new person would forget the simple things. She went a little slowly as she scored the glass, pushing harder than she needed to, but she did go from edge to edge. She looked up at me when she was finished.

"Snap it with the pliers," I said, pointing to the glass pliers. She carefully positioned the pliers and bent them until the glass snapped along her score line. It was like Christmas. Her face lit up as she examined the cut. "You're an expert," I exaggerated. She quickly tried a few more cuts to raise her confidence.

"What's next?" she asked impatiently. I couldn't believe how infectious her enthusiasm was. Glass had always been so private before and now I wanted nothing more than to share it with her.

"You have to cut out the pattern," I said, reaching for the copper foil shears. "We use these scissors and cut along the center of the lines. It creates a space for the copper foil that needs to go between the pieces of glass." I was getting so excited, I almost forgot pattern safety. "First, we need to make a copy in case something gets screwed up." I walked the pattern over to the desktop copier and ran off two copies - better safe than sorry. "When you work on something complicated, you actually have to label all the parts, but I don't think you can get lost with this since all the petals are the same." I handed the pattern back to her, and she began cutting. I watched as her mouth moved as she cut, almost as if she was chewing through the paper. Adorable.

"You're making me nervous," Amber said, smiling. I was standing too close, poised to jump in at the slightest error. I kissed her cheek and went to my own unfinished panel. I began setting up to finish covering the foil with solder. I plugged in my solder iron and retrieved the flux and a brush. I waited before starting, knowing she was almost done with cutting. It was a fairly simple pattern. A good one to start with.

"Now what?" Amber called when she finished. I hurried over with my knowledge.

"You glue the shapes on the glass," I said, as I reached for the glue stick. "Lay them out so you can liberate them from the glass separately. It will take many cuts to get the curves right, and you don't want the other pieces to interfere." I placed the unglued pieces down on the glass, shifting them so they could be easily separated by single cuts. "If you want certain color grains in the petals, now is the time to work that out." I watched as she shifted the petals around trying to maximize the purple in each petal while still leaving room for liberating cuts. She was a natural.

"Now glue them down," I continued when it looked like she was finished laying them out. "Make sure all the corners are glued down tightly." I reluctantly went back to my own work. Even a kindergartner knew how to glue so I resisted the temptation to help her with the first ones. I wanted to do all the work for her.

"Now I start cutting?" Amber asked. I almost went running over. I stilled my desire, knowing that the creation needed to be hers. She had to learn on her own.

"Yep," I replied, "first cut a petal free from the others, then begin to trim the excess, cut by cut. It doesn't have to be absolutely perfect - just close. The grinder will take care of the smoothness." I pointed to the grinder, a white boxy thing with a metal spindle poking out of the top. Amber nodded and moved the oil closer and grabbed the cutter. She remembered the oil. I let her work and learn on her own.

I walked over to my stereo system and plugged in my phone. I fired up the streaming, selecting Dido once again. The music started, Amber smiled at me and we went to work. There was something soothing about working with glass. It would be hard to explain it to someone who has never done it. The colors were wonderful and detail was implied, but never implemented. You never had to sweat the small things. A painter had to worry about every stroke. A sculptor, every cut of the blade. In glass, simplicity mattered. Errors were easily corrected and most problems could be avoided with adequate planning. The art lay in the choice of glass and how you laid the grain. Simple choices in my mind, more difficult for others.

I got lost in the work that some would find tedious. Tinning the copper foil with solder is not everyone's cup of tea. I found it soothing and the image of what I was creating always urging me forward. My brain would wonder and contemplate life. It also allowed me to forget that which should be forgotten. It was my meditation.

Her kiss on the back of my neck was a good sign I was lost in my work. It startled me, but I recovered quickly. I put the soldering iron in its cradle and turned my attention to Amber.

"I'm done," she said smiling, talking loudly over the music. I walked over to her work and examined the petals. Damn fine job for one's first cuts. I could tell by the scraps she had overdone the necessary number of cuts trying to achieve perfection, but experience would cure her of that. I walked over to the stereo and turned off the music.

"They're perfect," I said.

"I had trouble with the tops of the heart part," Amber explained, "I'm not sure it's right."

"Nature is not perfect and neither should your petals be," I responded, "it is what makes them yours." It is one of the reasons I liked glass. Perfection was unnecessary, only desire. I peeled off the glued pattern on one of the petals and handed it to Amber. "The edges have burrs and are slightly uneven." She examined the edges critically. "You have to grind them down smooth and at the same time you can fix some of shaping if you like." She nodded as I spoke, looking closely at the edges that she cut.

"I'll teach you to grind after lunch," I said, looking up at the clock. We had been working for over four hours. She laid the petal down and fell into my arms.

"I love this," Amber admitted, "working together, yet working alone. It gives me time to think without being lonely." I could not fathom how she understood everything so quickly. I only knew that she did. My ex hated my love of glass. I think she was jealous of the way I lost myself in it. She never understood my need to meditate, then again, I never trusted her enough to tell her why. She was too weak to know.

"Figure anything out?" I asked.

"No, but I feel better about it," she replied and followed with a kiss. One of her passionate kisses that made my blood boil.

"How about a picnic by the river?" I asked. I knew the answer, but I loved asking the question.

"That sounds wonderful," Amber smiled. I unplugged the soldering iron, capped the flux and we headed out to the kitchen.

Peanut butter and jelly. Not a fancy feast, but very nice if you go light on the jelly. I always felt about five years old when I ate it, but there is nothing wrong with that once in awhile. We brought out two folding chairs and used the small cooler we carried the sandwiches and a jug of iced tea in as a table. We ate and watched the water run by. Very soothing. I reached over and took Amber's hand in mine and leaned back in the chair.

"I'm in a lot of trouble, Mark," Amber said quietly. My ears perked up, but I tried not to show any visible signs of interest. I didn't want her to shy away. I just sat quietly and let her continue. "I have some people after me that don't play by the rules. Because of that, I also have people after me who set the rules." She sighed, "I don't want to bring this into your home, so I stay hidden. I dug my own grave for many years and now I'm running from it." She looked at me with concern. I looked back wishing her to continue.

"I'm still here," I said. It earned me a small smile. I squeezed her hand in support.

"When the trouble catches up, you'll go running," Amber said, "I'll want you to." She was still afraid to tell me what it was. I was once used to trouble. For her, I could get used to it again.

"Running is not something I do well, Amber," I admitted.

"These are bad people, Mark," Amber continued. I was once used to bad people. For her, I could get used to them again. I smiled inappropriately at my inner joke. "I'm serious. I don't want anyone hurt." I lost my smile for her sake. She was only aware of the hermit artist. She didn't know the rest of me. I let it go for now. We both weren't ready to exchange the full truth.

"No one is going to find you here," I offered. Hell, few people even knew how to find me. My phone rang as if to prove me wrong. I let go of Amber's hand and answered. It was the Andersons wondering about that status of their replacement window. I told them I would ship it out tomorrow. The interruption ended the conversation we were having. I wasn't sure if that was a good thing or not.

I taught Amber how to grind her glass that afternoon and I assembled my panel in a temporary frame and began soldering it together. We lost ourselves in the music and in our own heads. I wondered who the bad people were. I thought I might be able to help with bad guys. It's the legal stuff I would have trouble with. I decided to give it another day and then press for information. That is, if she would let me. I smiled, remembering the shower. She could easily talk me out of it. I took a deep breath and let it out slowly. I was going to make a mess of the panel if I kept thinking of the shower and those kisses and that smile and those breasts. I was mentally soldering myself to her. It's doubly hard to solder when you're smiling.

Dinner was a happy affair. I had finished enough of the panel that I had little doubt I would be able to keep my promise and send it off tomorrow. Amber had finished earlier than I had, her grinding had gone well. She started dinner while I finished up. Simple chicken breasts baked in some herb concoction she had dreamed up. We spent some time discussing the fun she had cutting and grinding. She explained what she had learned as if I needed the knowledge. I just liked hearing her talk, so I listened. I was getting really good at listening. Of course, it had never been so enjoyable before.

Instead of TV, we played Gin Rummy. Two 100 point games after we were done with the dishes. I can be pretty competitive sometimes, but I didn't mind losing to Amber. We split one game apiece. I thought we should play a tiebreaker. Amber smiled and removed her shirt. I had no idea when she had removed her bra. The idea of a tiebreaker faded away quickly as she ran to the bedroom. I guess she liked the idea of being even.

Amber was down to her panties by the time I caught up with her. I loved how her breasts hung down when she bent down to remove her last article of clothing. I was working on my pants as I stepped on the backs of my shoes, trying to save time. She rushed over to help, laughing in the same way she did that morning. Desire mixed with fun. Absolutely no guilt, just pleasure. When I finally kicked off my last sock, I lifted her, cradling her in my arms and carried her the three steps to the bed. I loved how she laughed at my manly domination. She kissed me all the harder for it. I had a strong desire to persist in my dominance. I wanted to give her joy and be the sole cause of it.

I laid her carefully on the bed, climbing over the top of her to force her to lie down. She was feisty, so much love to give. I settled her with a deep kiss, then began to descend. My lips kissing and nibbling all the skin I could find. My hands caressing and lovingly pressing her back when she tried to rise. When my attentions finished with her breasts and dropped down to her abdomen, I heard a gasp and the most lovely "oh." I glanced upward into her beautiful smile as she slowly opened her legs for me. There was so much desire in her eyes as my wet lips kept moving lower. I kissed her tummy, just above her soft down line. Then I dropped down and softly kissed the inside of her left thigh. A wonderfully musky scent greeted me as I crossed over to the right thigh, teasing it with little nibbles.

Amber gave me an exasperated groan as I continued slowly to her flower. Her scent invaded, an aphrodisiac of the most powerful kind. I couldn't hold back any longer. I buried my nose in her down and my tongue lightly traced her opening. I loved the tremors it sent though her. She was so warm and oily sweet. I retraced, this time deeper. Her fingers combed into my hair, caressing, but not controlling. Deeper and warmer I searched, my tongue finding and damply caressing her nether lips, inching higher. Her clitoris had left its little hood and greeted me proudly. I dragged the flat of my tongue across it lightly. You would have thought I electrocuted her. Her legs shook and her hips dug into the mattress. It was all the encouragement I needed.

I put two fingers in my mouth and wet them as best I could. I teased her cute little bud lightly with the tip of my tongue, I slowly inserted one, then two fingers into her. She was so hot inside. Her hands gripped my hair as I slowly increased the pressure with my tongue, teasing her bud as my fingers explored her. My erection was straining. I ignored it as I concentrated on her pleasure. Every one of her involuntary twitches increased my own need.

Amber started cooing as my fingers softly probed deeper. I had never felt a woman so wet before. Her hips began to rise and her legs stiffened. I curled my fingers upward and stroked the ceiling of my desire. My tongue danced with her bud and Amber cried out, this time forcing my head into her pelvis. It was her orgasm, but somehow it extruded power to me. My eyes strained to watch her back arch, tummy and breasts thrust upward. I never slowed, excited at what I was doing to her. Her moans were delicious music to my ears. Flashes of shattered glass in unknown colors ran through my mind. It was too beautiful to quantify in art.

Out of no where, Amber started laughing and struggling to push my head away from my treasure. "Stop," she struggled between breaths, "it's too ticklish." I lifted my face, leaving my fingers inside her. She relaxed with a sated smile.

"It doesn't tickle me," I said with as much smart-ass as I could muster. She laughed, but used her hand to protect her clitoris from further attack. I relented, but kept moving my fingers softly, enjoying the access she allowed me.

"Come here, you wonderful man," Amber ordered. I removed my fingers and crawled up her body. She twisted and forced me to my back. She straddled me and lowered herself onto my erection without a thought. We fit together so well. She settled down, then leaned in and kissed my face, not caring where it had been. I returned the kisses while my arousal grew. My loins were straining after watching her in the throes of pleasure.

"Baby," I said, without thinking, "I'm not going to last long - too damn sexy." My breath was coming in gasps as I held on. The smile on her face was delicious as she stopped her movement. Her fingers lightly scraping my chest were the only things moving. She was so hot, I didn't think movement was all that was necessary.

"We're going to need condoms," Amber said, "lots and lots of condoms."

"Oh god," I groaned as images formed in my head. Lots and lots of images. She saw the signs and quickly dismounted and her mouth lovingly closed around me. The sensation was incredible. I lost it while she caressed my hips, her mouth coaxing me forward. I emptied into her and she accepted it without hesitation. It took awhile for my body to slow. She came up laughing.

"That was so sexy," Amber said, "I can't believe you got so turned on."

"You have no idea," I chuckled, "stop being so gorgeous and I'll last longer." She slowly crawled up me, dragging her nipples along my skin purposely. She certainly knew how to play. Our lips met and I didn't care what she tasted like. We wrapped up into each other and found a marvelous sense of comfort. All the tension I usually stored up was gone. Only Amber remained. We slept sideways on the bed, naked and in each other's arms.


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