The plane had been late in landing – by over an hour in fact. But as soon as I hurried through into the Arrivals Lounge I could see her waiting for me. She was holding up a large card with my name written on it in large black felt tip, but not only did I recognise her instantly from the few small photographs she had primed me with, but she'd have stood out anyway amongst the rest of the placard-carriers, mostly cab drivers looking bored and relatives looking anxious.
"Welcome to Texas," she said – in a surprisingly un-Texas tone - once I was free of all the barriers. Stupidly, I marvelled at her voice: I had known from the start she was American but the accent still surprised me: stupid, as I say. If she was as flabbergasted by the English accent that emerged from my mouth then she gave no sign of it. But I knew already she was a woman in control, not given to bring thrown off her stride and not unpleasantly controlling.
We had warily got to know each other well in unusual circumstances and this was our first real meeting. This city was very much her territory, not mine, and as we sped in a cab to the large, impersonal hotel I had booked myself into I tried to get a sense of it. This was not easy as the cab windows were streaked with rain, and in addition I was trying to look at her as much as I could without seeming to stare.
She was as easy to look at as her photos had promised – absolutely unforgettable eyes set in an oval, unlined face. She sat with the same easy elegance in which she had dressed, her well cared for hands resting easily on her lap. Naturally she caught me staring but all she did by way of reaction was to flash me an amused smile, one that came all the way from the eyes.
We had agreed I would just dump my bag in my room at the hotel, quickly change and wash and then she would show me this seafood restaurant she liked. So I tore around the hotel room, showering the flight out of me and changing all my clothes and then rejoined her in the bar. Her coat was now off and she was sat on a bar-stool sipping I-didn't-know-what from a frosted glass, her pleasingly-shaped legs in what looked to my untrained male eyes like tailored slacks, worn with a cream blouse that looked like silk. She still seemed calm, and cautiously friendly in a guarded way.
"She hates me." I quietly moaned to myself, "Obviously she hates me and this has all been a colossal mistake!"
Whatever. We made it to the restaurant, which turned out to be as good as she promised it would. She was confident and totally at ease and I admired her enthusiasm for the dishes on the menu and her easy way with the waiters. Clearly they all adored her and could not understand what she was doing with the English ruffian sat opposite.
As the meal progressed we both relaxed a lot more. She gave me an edited and witty run-down of all the best and worst places to eat in her town – this place did great Italian but had a Ladies' Room with prehistoric fittings; that one was also great for fish (but not as good as this one) and had had its exteriors used in some movie or other.
I only half-listened frankly – I was so taken by the animation in her face and the obvious warmth she felt for where she lived. I tried to counter by telling her of all the amazing fish restaurants I had eaten in on my visits to Ireland – a place that had had a Great Famine when the potatoes were blighted even though surrounded by seas choking with every kind of fish and seafood.
I told her of my favourite place in Dingle, County Kerry, where the lady-owner cheerfully indulged my whim for salmon in both starter and main course (smoked with soda bread and lemon for the one, grilled with Hollandaise sauce and superb potatoes in the other), and also tactfully persuaded an elderly American couple to share a lobster rather than have one each, a thing they were touchingly grateful for when they saw the size of the monster finally manhandled to their table.
We were mellowing with one another by now....we were talking to each other as easily and intimately as we had done before this first, real meeting...And sometimes we allowed our conversation to be just easy silences.
Finally the meal was over, and she agreed to come back to my hotel for a last drink. In the cab we were strangely silent, despite out having been so relaxed and at ease before. But sitting in the large sofa in my hotel room, the curtains open to the City, a small glass of the Armagnac I had brought over with me in our hands, all seemed relaxed once again.
"You know," she said (that accent again which I was struggling to get used to), "I was very nervous about today. And tonight. I just could not stop worrying about what the reality might turn out to be."
I said, "I was thinking just the same on the plane all the way over – even though we have talked on lots of occasions and about many different things, and had seemed to reach an easy intimacy...it was still going to be a leap wasn't it?"
She looked thoughtful for a moment and flashed me that lovely smile. Then, putting her glass down on the low coffee table, she stood up and walked to the bathroom. "Won't be long," she said over her shoulder as she went.
I stood up and gazed out though the floor-to-ceiling window at the city beneath us. The room was on one of the higher floors and the view below was pretty breathtaking. Hanging in the now cloudless sky and facing the window was a seemingly enormous full moon. This was throwing shades of white and grey and black all over the room – we had had the room lighting on very low – and the overall effect would almost have been gloomy had it been any darker.
So, when I first heard her clearing her throat behind me I did not at first see her when I moved away from the window. Then I saw she had moved into the most moonlit part of the room, right by the bed near the window, and was standing very still looking at me. I in turn could not take my eyes from her: she had undressed completely and was standing, almost coquettishly, half facing me, her nearer leg bent a little so that her sex was all but still hidden by her hip. Her arms were crossed across her breasts, but leaving her nipples still visible.
She was gazing steadfastly at me, her eyes twinkling, her mouth almost but not quite smiling.
I was astonished by the effect of the moonlight on her glorious body: she was a study in monochrome beauty, worthy of a place in any erotica collection. I looked in her eyes again and this time the gleam told me what I should have suspected already – she had spotted the effect of the moonlight in the room herself beforehand and had not been able to resist...
I moved closer to her and brushed my fingertips across her forehead.....then I tilted her chin up with my hand and we both kissed suddenly and fervently. I do not know how long we would have been stood like that – our lips seemed just inextricably glued together – had she not broken off the kiss to sit on the bed beneath her and begun to unfasten my belt.
Foolishly I began to ask "Do you want us -?" – but she cut me off with a finger to her lips and I quickly unbuttoned and removed my shirt and the rest of my clothing. I pushed her back on the bed and sat at the foot regarding her.
She lay back on the pillow and said, rginning, "So...do you think this was worth the journey?!" Then she lifted her thighs apart, bent her legs at the knee and held both her hands in front of her sex, as if about to pleasure herself. She had shuffled down the bed a little so her upper body and head were totally flat and all I could through the gap above her hands were her nipples, now looking slightly erect.
Her face suddenly poked up over her breasts, "Well?!", she said, "DO you?!"
I smiled, and nodded – and then I reached over and lifted her hands on to the bed either side of her body. My own hands then moved to her upper, inner thighs and my palms pressed lightly on to the smooth white flesh. I brought my face right up to her labia and then allowed my tongue to flick out of my mouth and caress her lips in a confident up-and-down movement, savouring the taste of her moistness and the velvety texture of her now slightly-parted lips...
I continued to lick her here until I felt her moistening and opening a little more...and then I just touched her clitoris briefly with the tip of my tongue, coaxing it to wakefulness. I paused to raise my head to look at her face: her head was back, her mouth a little open and she breathed a little faster; her eyes were gazing straight back at me and she whispered, "Why have you stopped?!"
I dipped again and continued to explore and taste her....sometimes rhythmically licking her on the same area for minutes at a time....then changing the rate at which I licked her, or the precise part of her I licked, or exchanged licking for kissing or nuzzling or nibbling. My hands now had reached under her bottom to lift her up off the bed a little and hold her to my face.
I never neglected her clitoris for very long either...kissing and licking the tender area all around it, before sucking very gently, feeling it begin to swell a little. And as my tongue and lips attended to her clitoris, I would ease first one, later two fingers inside her, rotating them slowly, stretching her more and more open...and each time I did this I would make sure she saw me lick her juices from my fingertips.
After a while I raised my body up the bed to lie beside her, and kissed her softly on her mouth whilst my fingers still stroked the wet places between her legs... She turned to face me and took my penis in her fingers, stroking my hard shaft and then exploring my scrotum with her fingertips. I placed my thumb and forefinger at the top of her spine and then ran a fingernail slowly from her neck and down her spine and over the sweet curve of her arse.
Her response was to grip my helmet between her fingers and draw it to her parted, wet lips. I shifted position a little so that our bodies were now about as close as they could be short of being pressed together. She lifted up and bent her leg so that her pussy was now totally exposed and accessible to me and, pulling her calf on to my shoulder, I rolled a little further over and entered her, my penis sliding in quickly and smoothly between her wet and open lips.
And then we were both gripping one another's bodies desperately, as we rolled this way and that over the bed, my pelvis thrusting in and out towards her, my hard, eager cock pulsing in and out of her. I still had one hand clutching and gripping her bottom and pulling it hard against me, to allow me deeper penetration with each new thrust. She in turn was pulling mine to her, gasping something or other into my ear as our frantic coupling progressed.
One moment I was on top: the next she was. Either way, the feel and taste and fragrance of her body as it pressed to mine was totally intoxicating. I could feel her breasts crushed against my chest, her nipples hard as cashew nuts pressing into me. I murmured her name into her ear as we continued to rock against each other, feeling our bodies both tautening and approaching release...
Then without warning her fingers were caressing and gently squeezing my balls once again and I practically exploded deep inside her, and even as I did so I felt her own body judder and shake and heard little cries escaping from her lips. Her breasts beneath my eyes were suffused a light but bright shade of pink as I felt her climax beneath me....
An hour or so later we were still lying contentedly on the bed, her body snuggled up close to mine, my arm around her shoulder stroking her upper arm.
"I don't make a habit of this you know." she murmured in my ear.
"Nor me," I replied, "but it's a habit I could certainly get to like..."