A Stringed Instrument Ch. 02

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Chapter 2.

Note to readers: “Yaya” (??????) = Greek “grandma”.

Phoebe and I kissed good-night in the hallway, after looking both ways to make sure nobody was watching. I would’ve gladly followed her into her room — I enjoy sleeping with people, not just “sleeping with” them — but she stopped me at the doorway. “There’s no room. In the morning?” So I kissed her again and crawled into the guest bed next door. I lay there awake for a while, nerves still tingling blissfully, body very pleasantly relaxed, but I drifted off somewhere around the time the very last of the guests left.

The sunrise woke me, maybe five hours later. Most Saturdays I would’ve turned away from the window and gone back to sleep, but this time I found myself a robe and a towel and headed for the shower to wash off last night’s sweat. Even as an invited guest, I felt self-conscious in the boss’s house — last night’s bravado had evaporated with the daylight — and I was glad that nobody else was up and about.

The shower felt very good indeed. As the water splashed, I thought about last night. Well, wouldn’t you? I could hardly believe my luck, or my audacity. The way Phoebe had quivered when I took hold of her, the feel of her skin under my fingers…

I realised that my hand had drifted down between my thighs and I was halfway to orgasming on the memory of last night’s tryst. How long had I been in the shower? Too long, most likely. I rinsed off, dried myself and walked back up the hallway clad only in a fluffy robe.

Phoebe’s door was open, just a crack, but I hesitated. Was I pushing my luck? What if she’d had second thoughts?

Well, I had been invited. If and when she chose to rescind that invitation, I’d respect that. Until then, I’d just have to take her at her word.

I tapped on the door softly and waited, counting ten. Then I eased it open, slipped into Phoebe’s room and closed the door behind me discreetly.

The light was dimmer in here, coming in around the edge of her curtains, and I had to wait a moment for my eyes to adjust. It was the sort of room you see more often in movies than in real life: a teenager’s bedroom, preserved long after she’d grown up and flown the nest, kept against her occasional visits back home. (My own childhood bedroom had lasted about a month before my mother filled it with boxes of wool.) I stopped to get a better feel for this woman that I’d met barely twelve hours ago.

A desk, decorated with badly-worn stickers that must have been there twenty years. Textbooks: maths and chemistry, schoolgirl Greek and French. Several books of music theory and a child-sized cello stool draped with last night’s clothes (oh yes, I remembered those!). School pennants for music and hockey. A few family photos on the wall alongside some moderately good high-school artwork. A dusty Madonna-and-child icon in Orthodox style, redolent with gilt, hanging over the head of the bed. The bed that Phoebe was in.

She’d told me the truth last night; it was a narrow bed with barely enough room for one. That one now lay on her side on top of the covers — it had been one of those hot Melbourne nights — wearing only briefs and an oversized T-shirt, facing away from me, fast asleep.

I sat on the edge of the bed and looked at the curve of her back. She’d tied her curls back into a dishevelled pigtail before going to bed and I slipped my hand under that ponytail, ran my fingers through it. It’d been years since I’d been with a woman with long hair and I like to play.

As I soon discovered, Phoebe was still quite mussed from last night’s adventures. The last thing I wanted to do was wake her abruptly by yanking on a knot. So I made myself comfortable beside her, slipped the elastic out of her hair and started to unpick the tangles one by one. I could see it was going to take a while, but who counts the minutes when they’re alone with a gorgeous woman?

So I worked through her hair, knot by knot, enjoying the view, as magpies warbled outside. I may have entertained an impure thought or two somewhere along the way. But eventually I got to the very last of the tangles… and just as I pulled it loose, my eyes lit on a black bristly hairbrush on the floor beside the bed.

Well, just because I’d dealt with the knots didn’t mean I had to stop. I picked it up and started brushing canlı bahis her hair. Slow, languid strokes. Steady and soothing…

There’s a trick my old science teacher Mr. Jackson showed me, with two pendulums hanging from the same support. You set one swinging; soon enough, the other starts swinging too, picking up energy through the support that connects them. It only works if they’re made alike, on the same frequency, but when they are then the smallest connection is enough to conduct that energy.

It’s the same with people, I think. When you meet someone who fits you — in love, in lust, in friendship, whatever — there’s a sort of resonance that happens. What you’re feeling and thinking passes from you into them and it comes back redoubled. It just needs the right sort of contact. That could be something as physical as full-on sex, or as nebulous as a phone conversation.

Or even brushing somebody’s hair.

I don’t know you, Phoebe. Not well at all. Maybe when you wake we’ll have nothing in common. But right now, I feel connected to you by this simple act. Even if this is all that happens, I’m glad I’m here.

Phoebe murmured in her sleep and rolled over onto her front. That made my job awkward. Since she no longer had her back to me, I couldn’t easily reach her hair from my current position sitting on the edge of the bed, not without twisting around uncomfortably.

So I climbed onto the bed and knelt astride her waist. That put me in a good position to reach forward and brush down toward me. At first I brushed lightly, just picking up a few strands on each pass; gradually, as I satisfied myself that there were no knots left, I brushed harder, letting the bristles scrape her neck and (through the T-shirt) her back.

Although she didn’t wake, I could feel her relaxing, see her stretching out just a little, and I took that as permission to continue. I worked the brush through her curls again, one last time, before I gathered them into a bundle and pulled it to one side, out of the way. Then I set the brush down beside me and started using my fingernails, dragging parallel lines down her nape as lightly as I could manage.

That earned a sigh, so I did it again. This time I continued down, both hands fanned out and scratching down her back; when I got to the bottom, I slipped my hands under her shirt and then up to her shoulders, fingernails leaving ten tiny white trails on her skin.

Phoebe was starting to get restless; I didn’t want to wake her just yet, so I eased off, scratching very gently down her back and straightening her shirt. I leant forward to position my thumbs either side of her spine and began stroking her back and shoulders. Slowly, slowly does it; the best backrubs are unhurried.

After several minutes of this she’d settled a bit, but I could still feel a certain tension. Well, I knew something for that…

Using my left hand on her back for balance, I slipped my right hand up into her hair, burrowing into her curls. Slowly, thoroughly, I massaged her scalp, from side to side, from the nape of her neck to her brow, using fingertips and fingernails in turn.

I felt her melt under my touch and I continued, stroking and scritching her, watching her breathe. I couldn’t imagine wanting anything else on a Saturday morning when I could be doing this.

Time passed. The room grew warmer as the sun rose and my fingers still worked in her hair. Gradually I felt a slow subtle shift in the tempo of her breathing; she swallowed, paused, inhaled, still facing away from me.

“You’re a bad girl, Yvonne.” But she didn’t sound angry.

I paused what I was doing. “I’ll stop if you want me to.”

“I didn’t say stop.”

So I resumed. Now she was awake, I could scratch harder. Phoebe seemed to like that a lot. She was practically purring under my fingers and I brought my other hand up so I could use both of them in her hair. As I pleasured her, I could feel her gathering her words.

“Well, that was a pretty memorable first last night.”

“Oh? Never been to the Isle of Sappho before?”

“Ha. Yes, but —” She stalled as I scritched extra-hard, melting her brain for a moment, as deliberately as I might reboot my laptop. “Um. Yes, but only literally. You know, that’s very distracting.”

“Is it?” I did it again. “School trip?”

“No… bahis siteleri when I was eight, Dad and Yaya took me back to see the old country, meet the extended family. One of her brothers had a fishing business on Lesbos, so we spent a couple of days there.”

“Any good?” Now I was massaging her shoulders and her back, through the shirt.

“Hated it. I didn’t speak Greek well enough to understand what anybody was saying, didn’t want to see historical ruins, didn’t want to meet the extended family. Mmm, that feels good.” Once again I slipped my hands under her shirt for more direct contact with her skin, then continued the massage. “I just wanted to be home with my friends. Poor Dad, it was just after Mum walked out. He was trying to do something really special for me and I was an ungrateful little shit the whole time.”

“Dear me.” I wriggled back, straddling her hips, so I could work on the whole of her back. Leaning forward, putting my weight on my hands as I stroked up her back. Sitting upright again, hands pulling back down her body, fingernails scoring lines across her ribs. Pushing up again, thumbs ploughing furrows in her muscles.

“Uh!” She flinched as I reached a spot below her right shoulder; I eased off.

“Too hard?”

“No. You can go a bit harder, but slowly, please. I’m sore there.”

“I can tell, you’re really stiff. Cello muscles?”

“Yeah. Occupational — ahhhh — hazard.”

“Okay, let’s get the shirt out of the way and I’ll see what I can do.” Phoebe obliged, raising her torso just enough for me to shimmy the T-shirt up to her armpits, and I got to work on the problem spot. I’m no expert, but I know a few tricks. After a few minutes I had managed to loosen up the problem spot considerably and I returned to what I’d been doing before.

“Mmm. You’re very good at that.” She paused as I stroked, scratched, stroked. “But, yeah, I’m one hundred percent straight. Never so much as looked at a girl before.”

“Oh?” I sat back, drew back my hands, until just one fingertip was touching her, right at the base of her spine. Silence.

Then I rocked forward, trailing that one fingertip up her spine, coming to rest with my lips a hair’s-breadth from the nape of her neck.

“Well, you’re not looking at me now, either.”

I squeezed her hips between my knees; with the stance I’d been holding, my robe had started to come open at the bottom and I could feel the warmth of her body against the inside of my thighs.

I felt her about to say something, but it was lost in a shiver when I kissed the back of her neck. I brushed my fingers over her cheek, stroked her lips, felt her body yielding to my touch as I settled my weight on her.


I kissed her behind the ear — she shivered again — and I ran my left hand down her side, stroking down to her hip and the elastic of her briefs. “Hush.” Was I imagining it, or was she kissing my finger? I crooked it, caught her lower lip, felt her tongue-tip between her teeth.

My left hand intruded between us, sliding under her briefs to stroke her arse. She squirmed at my touch, but didn’t pull away, and I meandered further down, along the back of her thigh, inside and down…

As my fingers reached her labia, she arched her body against me. I bit her on the back of the neck and she gasped. But the position was cramped, with my wrist trapped between us and tangled in her briefs. My robe — by now falling open — was getting in the way.

“Off with this, I think.” I sat back, extricating my hand from her underwear, and shrugged off the robe. “And off with these, too.” I hooked my fingers into the elastic, on both sides of her, and tugged the briefs down as far as her ankles. Then I climbed on top of her and pulled her over onto her back.

She lay there, smiling up at me in a lazy sort of way. There was a hint of puzzlement on her face — still trying to figure out how she’d ended up in bed with me? — but I leant forward to kiss her and that occupied her attention for a while. As we kissed our legs intertwined and I stroked her face, crouching over her.

Her breasts were flattened against her chest, rising and falling with her breath. I slid down her body and kissed them, lips brushing over her curves, tongue-tip tracing little spiral trails that were always approaching bahis şirketleri her nipples but somehow never getting there, until she hissed with desire.

Then I relented a little, flicking one nipple ever so briefly, then the other, as my right hand slid down between us. Down her belly, dawdling in the tuft of hair below her navel, fingers poised just above her clitoris…

Her hips bucked against my hand, but I didn’t give her quite what she was after, not just yet. I circled, teasing her labia apart, sometimes brushing over the clit itself. But always too softly, not quite enough to get her anywhere but frustrated.


I circled her nipple with my tongue, pressed my lips around it, sucked it into my mouth. My fingers tickled at the inside of her thighs.


I rolled her nipple between my teeth. My fingers stroked her, harder, but not in quite the right spot.

“Oh please.”

I paused, lifted my head from her breast, looked up to see her looking plaintively back at me. I smiled, slid slowly up her body, my breasts pressed against hers, my face over hers.

“Hmm?” My fingers drifted slowly inwards, tantalising.


“I think something could be arranged.”

I placed my hands on either side of her face and kissed her on the forehead.

I kissed her on the nose.

I kissed her on the lips.

I kissed her on the chin.

I kissed her in the hollow of her throat.

I kissed her sternum, midway between her breasts.

I kissed her at the bottom of her ribcage, as her breathing shallowed.

I kissed her navel, with just a hint of tongue, as she kicked off her underpants.

I kissed her mons, light curls tickling my lips, and raked my fingers down her sides, down her thighs.

I kissed her labia, opening her with my fingertips. Her knees were bent, the soles of her feet flat against the bed.

I caressed her with my tongue and entered her with my fingers.

She exhaled, slowly emptying her lungs.

Last night I’d played rough, manhandling her (so to speak). This time I was gentle. I lapped at her slowly, softly, fingers stroking inside her and my thumb beside her clit as my tongue swirled.

In slow motion: Her left hand in my hair, rhythmically clutching and releasing, as my fingers plunged and corkscrewed and curled, as my tongue flickered and feinted.


Reaching upwards, under her knee, to find her right hand grasping the sheet, clenched almost into a fist. Stroking the back of it, until she opened her fingers again and I twined mine between them, our hands locked together and closing the circuit that my lips had begun.


Her taste and her heat, my flesh and desire, fusing together, dissolving…


A yelp from somewhere at the back of her throat, short and soft, and for a moment time stopped.

And another.

And another.

Then her knees went limp, and she pushed me gently away from her, too sensitive now to bear the slightest touch.

“Oh, Yvonne…”

And I moved up to lie alongside her. We lay there, holding one another in the afterglow. It was perfect.


The world never leaves you alone, not when you want it to, and we had to rise sooner than either of us would have liked. She had a lunch appointment with old school friends. Me, I had to brave the shops — on the last weekend before Christmas! — and find something for my parents, who were infuriatingly difficult to shop for. And before that, both of us needed to make ourselves presentable; I would have suggested we save water by sharing the shower, but that would have been awfully hard to explain if anybody had spotted us coming out of the bathroom.

Phoebe gave me a lift to the station. Before getting out of the car, I turned to her:

“I’d like to see you again.”

She blushed, lowered her eyes. “This week is hectic, it’s when I do Christmas stuff with all my family. But I should be able to swing something… are you free during the day?”

“Only tomorrow, I’m still working up to Christmas.”

“Tomorrow’s no good, I’m headed out to Ballarat to see Helen. My mother, that is. And I’m seeing my aunts after that. But maybe Wednesday? If you’re not too busy we can have a coffee at lunch and work something out from there?”

“Sounds good. How will we —” A horn sounded from up the line. “Shit, that’s my train.”

“Go. You’ve got my card, text me!”

And I ran for it, with butterflies in my stomach and a spring in my step.

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