Jennifer whispered in his ear, her lips caressing his face as she spoke. It was like being kissed by a shy little girl, one too young to know what effect she had. Michael turned, looked into her face and pulled her to his lips. It was one of those encounters so engaging that their teeth touched, their tongues intertwined by wishes of their own, a moment when he realized that kissing like this should also be considered sexual contact.
“I can’t wait for the wedding, Michael,” she beamed. “But you never told me about our honeymoon. I have to prepare clothes, you know. And there is the thing about a current passport.” She was trying once again to pull it out of him, and he felt himself weakening. After all, she had a right to know, and she was correct about the clothes. He had decided that Japan would be an exotic, romantic location for a honeymoon, partially because he had been stationed there in the Air Force for over a year and knew all the places she would like.
“You should allow me to surprise you, Jennifer. I won’t have anything left if you keep digging into my brain like that. Anyway, it isn’t fair to French kiss me and then pull away. It’s pure torture, and you know it.”
Jennifer laughed and stood up, turning to face him, her face all smiles but her eyes darting those looks of passion at him. She put her arms over her head and stretched, twisting at the waist as she did so, giving him a long look at her female curves, the ones he, as yet, had only imagined. Her head turned toward him as she relaxed, a teasing look coming over her while she puckered and mock kissed him.
“You little devil,” Michael hissed. “You set me on fire on purpose so many times that I can’t even remember how many. I’m already so hard from your kiss that I can’t stand without embarrassment, and now you show me the rest of you, and you know exactly what I want. Have you no pity?”
Jennifer giggled and pulled a strand of her shiny hair over her lips imitating a mustache. Her eyes danced with fire, then she dove into him, pushing between his legs with her body and sliding provocatively into his arms. “Tortured? Had enough?” she asked. Before he could say anything, she continued, “Now tell me what I asked about. Where?”
He gently put his hand on her buttock, ready to pull it away if she had any sign of refusal. She didn’t, but it was just another tease, because they both knew that going farther was off limits. Especially on the sofa of her parent’s screen porch, and most certainly not with them within shouting distance. “I give. The Orient…but that is as far as I go. You can torture me all you want, and that’s all I’ll say.”
“Wait, my precious intended, that’s not sufficient. Part of the Orient is tropical, part is cold. I have to know which.” She put her lips to his, but didn’t kiss him, just looked into his eyes, waiting on what she knew he would disclose.
Michael slapped her on the butt and pushed her away, something he really didn’t want to do, but the tumescence he was experiencing had to be eased, because any moment her mother might wander onto the porch wondering what they were up to. “Not a chance. You’d better prepare for both, just in case.”
Standing again, Jennifer pointed to his trouser front and said, “Omygod, you weren’t kidding!” She started to howl with laugher at his predicament.
“Something wrong, Jennifer?” came from the house. Her mother was listening, as usual. They could hear her footsteps coming closer. Michael looked around for some cover, some excuse, some method of disguise, even a pillow would do. Just as the screen door opened, Jennifer flung herself on his lap and put her arms around his neck, kissing him quickly on the forehead.
“My, my, children. I’m glad I came in when I did and not later. You know that it’s only three weeks until your wedding and then…well, just don’t let me see it,” Thelma said and placed a large plate of chocolate chip cookies on the table. Michael was used to the very strict principles of this house, and even though he felt otherwise, he strictly observed the rules, spoken and implied. The girl in his lap was worth any wait, any torment or turmoil. Jennifer was as pure as rainwater, a wholesome young woman whose deep passions were obviously present even though she mostly managed to control them, unlike himself. Michael kissed her on her forehead while her mother watched, then gave her a wink that her mother couldn’t see. Jennifer winked back.
With a frown, Thelma looked over her glasses at Jennifer, a bad sign. “Your father and I were wondering…” she paused, summoning up some unpleasant thought. Jennifer turned toward her, listening intently and letting go Michael’s neck. “Your degree. What are your plans? I mean, it’s such a waste. We had high…” She let the words she meant to say form in their brains, the intent clear.
“Nothing to worry about, Mother,” Jennifer said and stood up, her hand on Michael’s shoulder, as if to enlist his support, his voice, knowing that he felt the same. “I am finishing school, getting my degree, just as we planned. Michael and I decided on this long ago.”
“But, child, you are moving away. You can’t go to college like that.”
“Sure, Mother, sure I can. I’ll just change schools, that’s all.”
Thelma nodded unconvincingly, dropping the subject which concerned her most. Her daughter would be the first in the family with a law degree. The idea was so appealing that she had bragged to her friends and extended family. Jennifer’s marriage wasn’t as important in her eyes as a career. She could always get another man and with her looks, a more important man.
“I have to tell you something, Mother,” Michael said. “Hope you don’t mind me calling you mother…I think of you in that way, you should know. My point is to tell you that when we get back to my…our…hometown, the first thing I am going to do is to run for public office. I intend to run for Congress eventually, and we’ll live in Georgetown. That’s closer, don’t you see. And a woman with a law degree in Washington can always find work. We won’t let you down.”
Thelma paused to reflect before agreeing that such news was most persuasive. Yes, that is what she wanted to hear. Her daughter would be protected in that way, no matter what happened to their marriage. She gave them a big smile and, without another word, left the room, closing the door behind her as if an invitation to their privacy.