I posted a new story-type thing on my Fictionpress today; it’s the result of a writing exercise from the wonderful writing book Room to Write by Bonni Goldberg, in which we were to write about sex appeal from a distance. I put it under a cut for easy access.
She’s sitting on a bench, reading. Engrossed in her book, she doesn’t see him standing there. He pauses, letting the image of her sink in. She crosses her legs, shifts in her seat. Her hair falls over her shoulder and she brushes it away. One hand absentmindedly reaches into the bag of cherries next to her. She politely spits the pits into her hand and drops them into the bag, fingers already reaching for another.
He could stand there for hours, just gazing at her in all her innocence. But he doesn’t, his lunch break is almost over and he still has five blocks to walk back to his office. Besides, he knows she’ll be waiting for him when he gets off work tonight.
She’s in his thoughts all afternoon. He gets of work early, and finds her in the kitchen cutting up mushrooms for the pasta. She’s humming along with the radio, and he catches the door before it slams so not to startle her. He savors the moment; his wife never looks as good to him as when she’s unaware of his presence and lost in her own world. It’s then he really loves her and knows he could never leave her. He drinks in her image, feasting on the curves of her hips and back, even enjoying the swell of her breasts that he can’t see. He’s memorized every inch of her body over the years. His wife still looks as pretty as she did ten years ago – an opinion his wife can’t completely bring herself to believe.
When he comes forward to kiss her, he doesn’t tell her he saw her in the park that afternoon. He keeps it to himself all evening, and when they get ready for bed he knows why. When he closes the door of the bathroom behinds him, she’s lying in bed waiting for him, in lingerie he hasn’t seen before. She’s so beautiful and sexy he pauses for a moment, before slipping into bed himself and reaching for her. Yet he knows he’ll close his eyes in a minute, letting the image of this afternoon do its work. To him, innocence beats a provocative look hands down.
At least, the first time around.