Saturday, April 18, 2009

window shopping - part 2

The store was starting to get busy with the
morning rush as I sauntered out of the
warehouse in surprisingly high spirits. I
looked in on the main freezer to check on my
stock and rounded up my day staff to give out
instructions. Glancing across towards the
checkouts as I spoke, I could see Pam down the
other end of the shop, talking to someone I
didn't recognise. I headed up to the canteen
and saw that she wasn't far behind.
"Morning, mate, how're you doing?" she
asked, as if nothing had happened between us
barely an hour ago.
"Fine, yourself?", I replied, equally
nonchalantly. Two can play at that game, I
thought. Pam nodded and continued walking
towards the canteen. When we reached the
doors, however, she stopped suddenly, causing
me to almost collide with her.
"I just got a message about Denise, seems
she's running late today so I'll be a bit short
of supervisors. Any chance you could fill in
around lunchtime?"
I used to work on that department quite a few
years ago, and I still knew the ropes.
"Shouldn't be a problem, I've just got
some ordering to do then I think I can leave
Darren to take care of things. Around noon,
Pam replied in the affirmative and we parted to
sit at different tables with our respective
Lunchtime came, and I was back in the
canteen, trying to squeeze gossip out of anyone
and everyone.
"So, Mary, what's up with Denise today?"
I asked as I slurped my carrot and coriander
soup. Mary, the canteen supervisor, shook her
head slowly.
"Heard it's some family stuff, she's not
ill, I'm sure. Apparently," she leaned forward
confidentially, "her brother has moved in with
her now."
My stomach did a flip-flop. It was bad enough
knowing that Jamie was her brother, without
hearing that they now lived in the same house!
I kept my voice neutral as I spoke.
"Why's that then? He's only, what,
"Eighteen, actually," said another voice,
Deborah, who used to work on the checkouts but
now has transferred to the bakery. "Parents
split up, Dad dies, hey presto, sister looking
after brother whilst mother drinks herself
silly every night. Welcome to Denise Barker."
Deborah leaned back in her chair, and her
smugness at knowing all the facts annoyed me
immensely. However, her insensitivity about
the situation that Denise was in annoyed me
even more so, and before I knew what I was
doing, my left fist shot out and caught her on
the side of her jaw. Without a word, I stood
up and left the room, walked downstairs, got in
my car and drove home.

I knew I would be sacked. Hitting another
member of staff, for whatever reason, was
usually enough to wrap things up, not to
mention walking out in the middle of a shift.
I was just glad that it happened whilst I was
sticking up for a friend.

The phone call came when I was half way through
my bottle of Glenmorangie. It was Jo, the
Personnel Manager.
"Hello, I wondered if you could come in
to talk to me?"
I waited.
"Hello? I think we should try to resolve
things here, don't you?"
I kept my silence.
"Listen, from what I've heard, although
you were wrong to do what you did, you were
pretty well justified in doing so. Please come
in and see me." I gave in.
"I'll be in tomorrow morning. I want Pam
and Denise there."
"Well, Pam is in, but I'm not sure
whether Denise will be in, you know, she's had
"Never mind," I cut her off. "I'm going
to see her now. Thanks, Jo." I hung up and
went out to my car, thought better of it and
walked to the bus stop. It was only 2 o'clock

The stone-built building looked singularly
uninviting to the unfamiliar visitor. I
walked, or rather staggered, to the front door
and rang the bell. I then ran away and hid
behind a bush in the garden, until the door
banged open and a male voice spoke.
"I can see you, you know, behind that
I recognised Jamie's tones, and sheepishly
sidled up to the door. What was I doing there?
What did I want? I couldn't even remember,
such was the clouding effect of the whisky.
"Jamie? Is that you? What's up, mate?" I
asked, desperately trying to regain some sense
of normality. As I glanced up at him, he shook
his head thoughtfully.
"Sorry, chuck, you're on your own here.
Unless you came to see me?" His hopeful tone
made me feel even worse. He knew what I
wanted, but was going to make me suffer for it.
"Jamie, is Denise in now? I--I need to
talk to her."
He nodded his head, then contradicted himself
at the same time.
"No, she's out. Maybe you and me could
go somewhere, though, have a night out?"
I felt the heat rising, and kept my temper in
check with a great deal of effort.
"Jamie, I know your sister is around, now
let me in and tell her I am here, before I get
angry, ok?"
He stepped aside with a flourish and
disappeared, leaving me standing alone in the
hallway wishing I had followed my first
instinct and gone to a pub. I walked in, the
wooden floor creaking under my feet. `I bet
it's haunted,' I thought with a giggle. My
feet gave way under me and I had to lean
against the wall for support.
"Here, let me help."
Jamie reappeared carrying a bottle and glasses,
took my arm and led me into what appeared to be
the sitting room, with a huge stone fireplace
and a couple of impressive-looking rugs
covering the bare stone floor.
"Want a drink?" he asked, already pouring
whisky into the two small tumblers. I nodded
and took one from him gratefully.
"So," he started, leaning back in a chair
and inviting me to do the same, "why do you
want to see my sister?"
His tone was genuine, and when our eyes met I
could sense his sincerity. Despite his young
age, Jamie seemed a caring, sensitive chap. I
lowered my head.
"It was a really shite day today." I
whispered, on the verge of tears. I cradled my
glass and closed my eyes.
I heard movement, then felt a warm hand on my
arm. Jamie spoke again.
"Tell me what happened. I'll listen, but
just be honest with me, no messing. Deal?"
I smiled. "Deal," I said with feeling, taking
a slurp of whisky. Jamie leaned back, his arm
around my shoulders, and I found myself
studying him again. He really did look like
Denise, his build, face, hair, eyes. Tears
rolled down my cheeks and I didn't understand
why -- I had been in far worse situations in the
past and lived through it. I explained what
had happened with Pam, and how I had argued
with Deborah in the canteen, but couldn't tell
this handsome young lad that the reason behind
the argument was that I was in love with his
big sister. The end result was that it all
sounded rather false, and Jamie pointed this
out whilst pouring the second round of drinks.
I skirted around this, and finally he backed
"I'm just off to the loo -- will you be
ok?" he asked, placing his glass down in front
of him. I nodded.
The second he was gone, I reached down and
unfastened my trousers. I had been feeling
turned on, horny, excited, however you want to
describe it, since I walked through the front
door, and desperately felt the need to touch
myself. I stretched out my fingers and slipped
my hand underneath my boxers, which I found
infinitely preferable to women's underwear. My
fingers brushed over my clitoris and I
stretched out further, sprawling in the chair
as close to horizontal as I could get. I had
been wet for a while and the shorts were
soaked. I tipped my head backwards and slowly
drew circles with my fingers, every slight
movement causing a throb of pleasure, the way
it does when a woman is extremely turned on.
The heat from the open fire wafted up and
caressed my thighs, and I opened my knees as
wide as my trousers, pulled down to my ankles,
would allow. I slipped a finger inside me,
curling it upwards every few seconds and
shuddering with the pleasure it brought as my
other hand continued to massage my swollen
clitoris. Gasping, my body shuddered as I
reached orgasm within a few minutes, and I let
out an involuntary moan. A few more seconds
and I relaxed, my hand still between my legs.
Sitting quietly, I remembered where I was. I
wasn't sure how long I had been at it, but I
had sat up straight and put my clothing in
order before I heard a noise outside the room.
It was Jamie, being blatantly obvious about
entering the room. I knew immediately that
he had seen, or heard, what I had been doing.
I decided to get the first word in.
"Did you enjoy that, love?" I asked in a
playful manner. Might as well make light of
the situation.
He grinned and pointed to the bulge in his
"Yeah, I did. Sorry, I should have left
you to it but you're quite irresistible, you
know." I grinned at him and we both picked up
our drinks. He shifted again and sat close to
me, and I backed off instinctively.
"Are we, or aren't we?" he asked, looking
me in the eye. Part of me screamed `No, I want
Denise!', whilst part whispered quietly `Go on,
why not?'. I stuck with my first instincts,
fastened my trousers, pulled my shirt into
place and moved to a roomy chair next to the
blazing fire. My watch told me it was almost
6pm. I glanced at his youthful face, flushed
and round, and cursed myself for what I was
doing to the young man sitting opposite me.
"Jamie, I don't want to hurt you." I
stated as sincerely as I could, knowing that
that was exactly what I was doing. He shrugged
his broad shoulders as if he didn't care.
"I knew you wanted Denise," he said in a
low voice. "I was just hoping you'd change
your mind." I felt like I was the most
insensitive user on the face of the Earth, and
I could barely bring myself to speak.
"Jamie, please, don't hate me for this. I
know we don't know each other well, but we are
both here with all the facts."
He had told me that he was seeing a girlfriend,
which made me feel slightly better about
"Look, I've got to go out. She'll be
back soon," Jamie told me as he hurriedly
grabbed his coat from the stand. He
disappeared, leaving me in a strange house
wondering what the hell was going on.
7pm arrived, and I had dozed off by the
fire. Keys turned in the door and I awoke with
a start. I was still pretty pissed, but sat up
"Hello, Jamie?" I asked, standing up and
brandishing a handy dessert spoon. A light
turned on in the hallway and I relaxed. A
burglar would in no way be able to find that
switch, as it was behind a bookcase. As I
waved my spoon about, the figure took shape.
"Hi, what are you doing here?" Denise
asked, pulling off her coat and draping it over
the stand. I stood mutely, trying to think of
an excuse. In the end, I said nothing, and
Denise walked on into the lounge. I settled
back in my chair and waited.
Denise is about five feet six inches
tall, blonde hair, medium build. The main
thing people remember her for is her
personality -- she is patient, caring and funny,
kind-hearted and intelligent.
"Well, this is my house, so I get to ask
the questions!", she said, smiling. I waited
again. Denise lounged out on the chair that
Jamie had occupied a few hours ago. Finally, I
thought I had better speak.
"Good day? I hear Jo's been on the
warpath again." She nodded and stretched out,
reaching her legs towards the fire. She was
still wearing her work clothes but had
unfastened the top couple of buttons of the
blue shirt she wore and rolled up the sleeves,
despite the cold outside.
"She's ok, she's got a tough job, keeping
the likes of us in check," replied Denise. She
looked at me with an amused expression.
"Want to tell me what happened earlier,
or do I have to guess."
I shifted uncomfortably and looked away.
"Oh, nothing really. Deborah just
annoyed me, that's all."
Denise raised her eyebrows questioningly and
leaned forward in her chair.
"I don't think you'd punch someone just
for `annoying you'. Was it to do with Pam?"
"No, it wasn't. Just forget it, I'll
deal with it tomorrow, and find out if I've
still got a job."
Denise laughed and stood up, walked over to me
and placed her hands on my shoulders.
"It'll be fine, they won't sack you. A
while ago, Paul out of the warehouse knocked
out Darren, some argument about a girl, and Jo
just gave him a ticking off." She squeezed my
shoulders reassuringly and ruffled my hair, her
fingers seeming to linger ever so slightly
before she let go and walked silently over to a
large, stone-framed window seat where she
perched, facing outwards away from me. I
watched her every move in reflective silence.
Her whole demeanour and posture did not look
right somehow, even the way she spoke was
different, and it was not the usual happy,
confident Denise I had come to know.
As she sat, frame silhouetted against the
brightness of the outdoor security lights, her
head and shoulders leaned against the window,
each breath causing mist to spread over the
cold glass panes. She looked a picture of
misery, and it was affecting me. If what that
loathsome witch Deborah said was true, I knew
the simple explanation behind Denise's
feelings, but I didn't know what I could do to
help. A little voice upstairs said `Anything
is better than nothing,' and I rose before I
thought better of it. Moving to stand behind
my friend, I realised that tears streaked her
fair cheeks, with some rolling down the window
and making tracks in the condensation.
With a deep breath I placed both hands on
the tops of Denise's arms and squeezed gently.
Neither hearing nor feeling any objection, I
slid one, then the other down her back and
around her waist, sitting behind her on the
stone seat. It was freezing, and I had to bite
back an "Oh, Jesus!" that hovered on the tip of
my tongue. Both arms around her, I leaned
forward and rested my chin on her shoulder. She
leaned backwards in response and turned so that
her head nestled against my chest. Holding her
warm body tightly, I gently kissed the top of
her head. Her hair smelled wonderful, fruity
and fresh, and I breathed in deeply. She
snuggled closer to me and I could still feel
her shaking silently as she wrestled with
whatever was causing her sadness. Stroking her
hair and side of her face, I noticed every
detail, the silky blond locks falling over her
ears, the softness of her cheeks, ears red from
the cold.
We sat that way for ages, or so it
seemed, sharing our warmth and drawing strength
from each other. There is nothing on this
earth more comforting than the caring touch of
another human being, and I had not felt so
relaxed for a long time. Finally, Denise
lifted her head and looked at me curiously.
Her eyes were red but she wore a slight smile.
I grinned back and hugged her again. She
responded by reaching her arms around my neck
and gently kissing me on the lips, with no
sense of urgency or dramatics. I responded
warmly, moving my hands to her thighs and
stroking them, inviting a reaction.
Our tongues met, and though the kiss
moved from friendly to become passionate,
loving even, there was nothing hurried about
it. Her legs parted and I allowed my hand to
travel further up the inside of her thigh on
top of her trousers, ever so slightly brushing
the seam at the top with my thumb before
continuing down the other leg. I heard a
little gasp and our lips parted, and Denise
leaned against my chest again, murmuring "Carry
on, mate," softly into my shirt collar.
I dragged my fingers up more slowly this
time, pausing to run my thumb up the seam at
the top of her trousers to the bottom of the
zip. The gasp of pleasure was more audible
this time, and I decided it was time to stop
teasing. I tugged down the zip of her trousers
and undid the button, causing them to part just
enough. It was dark now, the lights outside
having switched off and the fire behind us died
down to embers. Sliding my hand inside her
underwear, I ran my fingers through her soft
patch of hair and parted the folds covering her
womanhood. She was already fairly wet and I
was able to easily slide my thumb up and down
in very slight movements, first down one side
then the other of her swollen clit, slowly and
I was rewarded with a moan and Denise
stiffened, jerking and shifting as I continued
my relentless assault on her pleasure centre
with practised strokes. I quickly thrust my
middle finger inside and curled it several
times before returning to the tiny thumbstrokes
I knew could bring a woman to orgasm. She was
very close to that now, and I quickened my
pace, tilting my head to kiss the top of her
ear and forehead. I had to hold her waist
tightly with my other hand now as she writhed
in my grip, moaning louder as she reached a
climax. I switched to circular movements of my
thumb, around and over the very tip of her
clitoris, my hand covered in her juices,
panting myself now with the effort of holding
my friend still in the throes of orgasm.
Finally her bucking subsided and I returned to
gentle stroking, feeling Denise relax heavily
against me once again. I withdrew my hand and
slipped it around her waist underneath her
shirt, enjoying the feel of her soft, warm
skin. I let my head rest against the window
frame, breathing softly into her hair, and
closed my eyes.
We didn't talk again, words just didn't
seem to fit the situation, though I knew we
would have to at some point. After a while,
Denise freed herself from my embrace, kissed my
cheek sleepily and left the room. She did not
return, and, putting on my coat and gloves, I
headed out into the night.

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