An Artful Kiss
Debbie flew out of the women’s bathroom and clipped across the marble floor in the Impressionist wing, which sat adjacent to the executive offices. The light of the emergency exit cast a faint glow over the darkened room.
She jerked open the heavy wooden door to the back hall, and a man fell through the threshold, knocking her to the ground.
He landed on top of her but grabbed her head and was able to save it from hitting the floor. Unfortunately, the spill brought their lips together in an awkward kiss. A jolt of static electricity coursed through her at the point of contact. Deb shoved the gangly body off her chest and coughed, slapping at the man and trying to regain her breath.
Surprised brown-eyes rounded behind thick black-rimmed glasses. Sam. Debbie threw her head back, drew in a deep breath, and sighed.
“Oh Deb, I’m so sorry. I— I didn’t see you. And y— you opened the door right when I was walking through it.”
He seemed apologetic but made no move to let her up. Sam was the geeky assistant curator who’d asked her out his first day on the job two years ago and at least once a week since then, never taking ‘no’ for an answer.
“Can I get up?”
He rolled off of her, and she scrambled to her feet. “What are you doing here this late?”
He blushed and diverted his gaze.
Shit. Was he trying to stalk her again? Though Deb considered him more of a nuisance than a threat, it really annoyed her that he always seemed to pop up.
“W—Well, Debbie, I could ask you the same thing. Why are you here so late? I thought you were off for a couple of days?”
“Are you keeping tabs on me again, Sam?” The frustration in her voice must’ve come through, because he smiled.
He loved to agitate her. It was so juvenile. Like the first grade boy who pulls the pigtails of the girl he secretly likes. Only Sam’s attraction for her was no secret. Everyone in the museum knew of it.
He grinned. “One of these days, Debbie, you’re going to really see who I am, and then you’ll agree to go out with me. When that happens, I just hope I still want to go out with you.” He stood and brushed the dust from his fully buttoned white oxford shirt.
“Right, Sam. I’ll let know on that one.”
“Didn’t you feel the chemistry between us when our lips met?”
Deb rolled her eyes and pushed past him. She heard him chuckle as the door slammed behind her.
Standing before the Curator’s Office, she nervously pressed the wrinkles from her clothes and straightened her hair. With a light rap on the door, she entered Olivier’s lair.
Her heartbeat shot to the vaulted ceiling as she stepped into the sleek modern office. She’d only been there twice before and never alone.
A linear chrome and glass desk sat away from the far wall. The workspace had no drawers and hardly a paper cluttered the top. A high-backed white leather chair was perched behind the desk and against the side wall rested a skillfully decorated bookshelf filled with various artifacts and reference books. How did the man get anything accomplished in such a pristine environment? Not a pencil was out of place.
To the left and near the windows a clean-lined white leather sectional sat in front of a rolling caddy. A bottle of champagne, two flickering tapered candles, and two fluted glasses rested near a plate of fresh strawberries on the portable bar.
Elegantly smattered about the room were various sculptures and works of art Olivier had procured over the years, some of them famous and worth millions.
The light glowed under the door of his private bath, and the sound of running water indicated he was freshening himself. Likely trying to remove the red wine stain from his suit.
Deb strolled to the sofa and tried to sit in a flattering position. That was a joke. She fidgeted with her watch, her earrings, and the hem of her blue cotton top. From the glass tray she took a strawberry and leaned back against the plush throw pillows, bouncing her knees up and down.
Olivier opened the door and strode out of the restroom, wiping his hands on a dark gray towel with red stripes. When he saw her he smiled and tossed the towel back in the bath. His rich velvet French/Dutch accent rolled off his tongue like sweet nectar. “Ah, Deborah. I’m glad you came.”
His crisp white shirt was unbuttoned at the neck, and the sleeves were rolled up to his elbows. He pinned her with his gaze as his graceful gait carried him across the room in three strides. His finesse and refinement sent a sexy chill down her spine.
“Thank you for inviting me.”
The precision with which he filled the crystal flutes with champagne and slid next to her caused her chest tighten.
Maybe this was a mistake. “I shouldn’t stay long. I—”
His fingers reached out to shush her mouth, and he handed her a glass. “Nonsense. There will be plenty of time for work.” Tingles shot through her lips at his touch.
God almighty, his onyx eyes sparkled. The subtle scent of sandalwood emanated from his freshly shaven face. Deb took a big swig of champagne and tried to remember to breathe. Everything about this man subtly suggested luxury. There was nothing second-class about him.
“I am glad you are here to celebrate this night with me, Deborah.”
He slid closer to her.
Her voice squeaked. “Sure.” And a rush of warmth flushed her face.
The candlelight flickered off the silver of his sideburns as he reclined next to her. “How old are you?”
“Huh? Oh, uhh…twenty-five.”
Sexy mischief danced over his features. “And how do you feel about older men, Deborah?”
Oh shit! “Whaddaya mean?”
He cupped the back of her neck, drawing her face close to his. His cool fingers cause goose bumps to rise over her arms, and the protrusion of her taut nipples strained her shirt.
His whispered words tickled across her cheek as he leaned toward her. “What do I mean? I mean to kiss you long and deep like I have wanted to for the last five years.”
“Ohh—” Her answer was lost as his mouth engulfed hers. Smooth and soft his lips caressed and teased her in exquisitely slow graceful movements. She parted her lips for his gentle tongue that stole in to explore her. The essence of strawberries and champagne filled her senses.
Her arm wrapped around his lean back, and she pulled closer. Olivier sighed at her touch and deepened his kiss. In languid motions, he expertly danced his tongue and lips in a harmony around hers that lit a fire in her core. Liquid desire pooled between her legs. This man, at twice her age, was the most accomplished kisser she’d ever known – and she’d known a few.
He leaned her back into the pillows, and his hand drifted like a summer breeze under her shirt to caress her breast. Her eyes fluttered back in her head. His cool silky fingers slid behind her back and with one flick released the hooks on her bra. Deb gasped. It was the sexiest thing she’d ever experienced. The moment couldn’t have been choreographed more deftly by Ang Lee.
As his palm stroked her exposed nipple –
A blood curdling scream rang out and echoed from down the hall.
Come back next week to find out what happens….the prompt for next week is ‘marching band’. Won’t it be interesting to see how I get from here to there? Thanks so much for stopping by, please leave me a comment. You can find more great Free reads HERE at the Tuesday’s Tales Blog.