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Excerpt for New York by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

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New York

an adult short story

from the Warming Stories collections

by

Lindsay Debout



Copyright 2018 Lindsay Debout

This edition published by Smashwords



This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only.

If you paid for the book, it may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each reader. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please return to your favourite retailer and purchase your own copy.

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Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.



This story, and the characters within it are pure fiction. Any resemblance to real people or events is entirely coincidental.



All characters depicted in sexual acts in this work of fiction are 18 years of age or older.

The Big Apple. Noisy, smelly, hectic, overcrowded – and that at 1 a.m. on a Saturday morning. Does this city ever sleep? Apparently not around Times Square in the holiday season.

Bryony hugged a lamppost to avoid being swept away by the stream of tourists. It was probably its main purpose, since the wall-to-wall neon signs made the whole place bright as day. Wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling. If anyone worked out how to build a dome over the square, no prizes for guessing how it would be made to pay.

She let her gaze wander. So this is Times Square. Noisy. Gaudy. Flashy in every way. Lots of history. But so what? Lots of other places are just as noisy, gaudy, flashy and full of history, but they don’t get carpeted by tourists.

The power of advertising. And Hollywood. If I starred in films as often as Manhattan does, I’d get a lot of attention.

Was it worth all the time, effort and travelling to get here?

She watched one of the police horses patiently allowing the tourists to pet her. Children were being held up so they could stroke her nose. One child offered an apple but the horse’s rider leaned down and talked him out of it. When he sat back upright in the saddle, his head disappeared.

That was odd. Bryony looked again. The rider’s head was firmly attached and smiling genially.

Optical illusion. She looked around for more police horses. One was on the other side of the square, almost lost in the sea of traffic. Its rider was fine, but the horse itself was missing its head.

She looked up at the biggest neon sign. A chunk was missing from a top corner.

Oh, damn. Damn, damn, damn. She rummaged in her bag for her tablets. Damn! I left them in my room. She turned and started pushing her way through the press of people.

The blind spot was larger and fringed with flashing lights by the time her hotel was in view. It’s going to be a bad one, she thought grimly as she worked her way through the crowds. Desperation throttled her normal British reserve and she used elbows and heels when she had to. Pretend I’m looking for bargains at a jumble sale. American Football has nothing on four British grannies all fighting for the same second-hand jumper.

Thirty yards from the door of her hotel, she was stopped by a combination of crowds, cordons and a couple of behemoth-sized bodyguards. Being tall, Bryony looked down on most men – in the purely physical sense at least. Not these. “I have to get to the hotel!” she called up the cliff face that was one of the guards.

“Sorry, lady,” his voice boomed back from somewhere in the stratosphere. “We’re filming a scene. Should be all done in about an hour.”

The noise around her was beginning to echo as if in a dustbin. Oh, not good. So very not good. She tried to duck under the ropes but a hand the size of the same dustbin blocked her way.

Squeals from alongside her howled through her head. They also kicked her in the stomach. Most of her vision was filled with sparkling fairy dust and she had that horribly familiar approaching thunderstorm feeling.

The squealing got louder, with the shrill, piercing quality that only comes from overexcited young women. It added a few extra turns to the vice squeezing Bryony’s brain. Her eyes squeezed shut in sympathy.

“Hello! What’s your name? Do you have something for me to sign?” The voice was smooth, male, not young, not old. Not one Bryony recognised.

“Sorrrr…?” she slurred. Oh great, now my speech is getting scrambled.

“Would you like my autograph?” the voice enunciated carefully, causing much laughter.

Bryony shook her head. Explosions went off between her ears. “Migraine. Hotel. Medicine.”

Instantly the ropes were hauled up, her arm was grasped gently and she was pulled forward. Another explosion went off, but this one was behind her. Angry young women were making their outrage known. Bryony didn’t care. She was going in the right direction. The quicker the better, if her stomach had any say about it.

Yet more noise. Voices arguing, Mr Smooth’s loudest among them. They faded to a mumble. Bryony got the impression that she was surrounded by silent people walking with her and whoever held her arm. She didn’t care. They were in the hotel, which was all that mattered.

“Which room?” Mr Smooth’s voice fought its way through the acid fog roiling in her head. “Which room?” he repeated.

“One ta-tu-two wu-wu-one f-fa-four,” she forced out. Her dinner followed of its own accord, causing another explosion of noise.

Someone picked her up in their arms, which at least meant her head wasn’t being jarred by her footsteps. The elevator didn’t meet with her stomach’s approval and it made its feelings known. More noise.

At last they reached her room. Bryony tried to fumble in her bag but her coordination had gone as well. The bag was gently taken from her, the door opened and she was carried in. The room lights went on, sending lances of pain through her eyes.

“Turn them off,” a voice commanded, and it did command. Mr Smooth was obviously used to getting his own way. The lights went out and a much fainter reading light was put on instead.

Someone carefully undressed Bryony, washed her down and dried her off. Someone else handed over two of her tablets which she forced down with a glass of water, then she was put to bed.

*

Bryony kept her eyes closed while she worked out how she felt. Stomach empty, but otherwise okay. Head aching, but no worse than a normal headache. Eyes- She carefully opened them and blinked at the closed curtains. Sunlight seeped in around the edges, but it didn’t sparkle and it didn’t hurt. Eyes back to normal. Now to work out how much time I’ve lost.

Gingerly she pushed herself upright in bed. Her head throbbed, but tolerably. A woman was watching her from the desk opposite the bed. Years of experience kept Bryony’s nerves steady so they didn’t reboot her migraine.

“Who are you?”

The young woman smiled at her. “I’m Sarah, one of the production runners. Mr Cornell asked us to keep an eye on you.”

“What time is it?”

Sarah looked at her watch. “It’s around 9:15 a.m.”

Bryony grunted. “Eight hours. Not too bad. I’ve known worse.”

“Monday morning.”

Bryony gaped at her. “I’ve lost two whole days?

“Yep. You were out cold. We kept checking your pulse to make sure you weren’t dead.”

Bryony sorted through the questions queueing up. “Who’s we?

“Me, Rachel, Suzy and Kristy. We all work for the studio. We’ve been taking it in turns to sit with you. Suzy put you to bed. Kristy rinsed out your clothes and sent them to the laundry.”

Bryony looked down and realized she was naked. “Rinsed out my clothes?” A memory loomed. “Was I sick on them?”

The girl giggled. “Ooh, yes! All over Carl - Mr Cornell - as well. There was a huge row about that. He had to clean up, get into a spare costume and go back into makeup. It held up filming for hours.”

Bryony could feel herself blushing. “Yes, well, if the hotel hadn’t been blocked off in the first place I could have got to my tablets in plenty of time. Is he the person who got me past the guards?”

“Yes.” She looked awestruck. “No-one else would have dared. I mean, interrupting the whole shoot just to let a fan through?”

“I’m not a fan of- sorry, what was his name?”

“Carl Cornell. You must have heard of him!”

“I’m not into films much, sorry.” Carl Cornell… “The name sounds familiar. Is he famous?”

The young woman’s jaw dropped, then she smiled tightly. “He is quite well known, yes.”

“I need to thank him. What’s his number?” She reached for the bedside phone. It was off the hook. When she went to put it back, the girl interrupted her.

“That’s not a good idea, Miss Temple. It’ll ring as soon as you put it down.”

More questions joined the queue. “How do you know my name?”

“We had to look in your purse for your room key, remember?”

“Vaguely. All right then, why will the phone ring? Who wants to speak to me?”

“Er – everyone? The unknown fan escorted into a New York hotel by one of the hottest names in Hollywood? There are so many angles on that story, the press could live off it for months.”

Bryony stared at her. “All I did was have a migraine!”

The girl shrugged. “Welcome to Tinsel Town, Miss Temple.”



After washing and dressing, Bryony felt almost human. This time she made absolutely sure her tablets were in her bag before she allowed Sarah to open the door to the hallway.

A pair of American Footballers flanked her door. They had to be footballers - no-one else had shoulders as wide as they were tall. They probably had to walk sideways down the narrow corridor.

“Who are you?” Bryony asked for the second time that morning. “And what are you doing here?”

“The studio wanted to make sure you weren’t hassled by anyone, Miss Temple.” Hulk Number One’s voice was surprisingly soft and cultured. Bryony mentally kicked herself. Why should I be surprised? Mustn’t judge people on appearance.

“Thank you, but I don’t need bodyguards.”

“Take a look out of your window, Miss Temple,” advised Sarah from behind her. “Don’t be seen.”

Bewildered, Bryony went back into her bedroom and peered through the smallest gap possible in the curtains. The front of the hotel was surrounded by people. People with cameras. Some with TV cameras. Now her nerves started to jangle. This was not a situation she’d ever been in before.

On the way down in the lift, Sarah shook Bryony’s hand. “Nice to meet you, Miss Temple. Ricky and I’ll be going out the front door as decoys. The press will recognise us so we can keep them busy while Jermyn here sneaks you out through the service entrance.”

Bryony looked up – and up – at Hulk Number Two. ‘Sneak’ is not the term I’d have used for someone his size. “Can we go to the restaurant first for something to eat?”

“Not a good idea, Miss Temple. Not here, anyway. Jermyn will take you somewhere more private.”

“Fair enough. Thanks for everything you’ve done for me, Sarah. Thank your colleagues as well.”

*

‘Somewhere more private’ involved a chauffeur-driven limousine ride north through Manhattan and on into the countryside. “Are you kidnapping me, Jermyn?” Bryony said it with a smile, but she was only half joking.

Sat alongside and trying not to squash her, Man-mountain chuckled. “Not at all, Miss Temple. We’ll take you anywhere you like. You can go back to your hotel if you prefer.”

She shuddered at the thought of the press pack outside the hotel. “No, the mystery tour is fine. So long as we eat soon or I’ll be taking a chunk out of your arm.”



Fortunately for Jermyn’s forearm, they drew up at a diner only a few minutes later. Bryony stared out at the ramshackle building. “We’re eating here? It’s a bit public, isn’t it? What about the press?”

Jermyn went around the car and opened her door. “This is a sort of demilitarized zone. There was a big bust-up between the owners and some reporters a few years ago. The locals piled in as well. Now there’s a truce. Nothing here gets reported. It gives the press some downtime, and maybe some leads they wouldn’t get anywhere else. Everybody wins.”

Once inside the diner, it took a few moments for Bryony’s eyes to adjust to the gloom. In one booth she recognised Ricky, the morning’s Hulk Number One. In a corner booth behind him, someone waved at her. A man, tidily dressed. Vaguely familiar.

“Mr Cornell?” asked Bryony as she walked up to the booth. Behind her, Jermyn squeezed in with Ricky. No-one would get past those two without Carl’s say-so.

He stood up as she approached. “Call me Carl. Take a seat. What’ll you have?”

“Everything,” replied Bryony, sitting opposite him. “I’m Bryony, by the way.”

Orders given, they both leaned forwards. “I’m paying for this,” said Bryony, “to thank you for what you did for me.”

“No problem. My mother and older sister both get bad migraines, so I know the score.”

Bryony blushed. “And I’m so sorry for throwing up all over you.”

He laughed. “Not the first time that’s happened, either. The studio wasn’t happy, but I straightened it out. So, what are you doing in New York?”

“I’m on holiday for a week. Seeing the sights. I fly back on Friday.”

“You’re not going to see many sights in four days. New York’s a big place. Manhattan is just a small part of it, and even that’s far too big for one week.”

Their coffee arrived. Bryony stirred hers slowly. “I’m not really all that interested in doing the tourist bit. I’m here. That’s all that matters.”

He looked at her oddly. “It’s a long way to come just to say you’ve been here. This isn’t part of some bucket list, is it?”

Bryony stared into her cup. Eventually she sighed. “Yes, but not mine. Mum’s. She has- she had Multiple Sclerosis. I’d been looking after her for the last few years. She’d wanted to come to New York since she was a child. We were going to come while she could still get about, but she never got the chance. It got too bad too soon.” Her lips tightened. “She died a few weeks ago. I came anyway as a memorial to her. I dropped a wreath in the Hudson, near the Statue of Liberty.”

Her host reached across the table and squeezed her arm. “I’m very sorry to hear that. Still, at least you’re not tied down any more.”

Bryony’s hand connected with his face before her brain had a chance to catch up. The slap echoed around the diner. Conversation stopped and everyone turned to look.

Carl rubbed his cheek and sighed. “Every time I meet you, Miss Temple, something bad happens.”

Bryony’s face was already beet red. “Sorry,” she mumbled.

“No, I’m sorry. It was tactless. But you know what I mean. Your life’s been on hold for quite a while. It’s not on hold any more.”

Thanks for reminding me – not. That’s part of the reason I’m here. The holiday was already booked and paid for, so it was easier to come than to cancel. I didn’t have to make a decision. When the trip’s over I’ll have to think about what to do next. What to do with the rest of my life.

Their order arrived, which saved her the need to reply. Hungry as a Hobbit, Bryony was glad of the US portion sizes. Eating helped to ease the conversation along as well. By the time the waffles and ice cream were on their way, she could understand why Carl was hot Hollywood property. Smooth, charming, courteous, humorous. Handsome. Well groomed. Charismatic.

“Don’t you get fed up with all the publicity?” she asked, spoon poised over her dessert. “All the press intrusion? All the…” she waved her free hand “…hassle?”

He shrugged. “Hollywood needs the press to promote the films or the films don’t get made in the first place. If you mean, do I like the publicity? No, but I can’t have it both ways. Without the publicity I wouldn’t have a job.”

“You don’t have to work, surely? You must be rich enough by now?” Bryony realised how rude that sounded. “Sorry, none of my business.”

He smiled. “You mean, rich enough to retire? Yes, but I love my job. My job as an actor, that is. I’d still act even if I got paid peanuts, like I was in the early days.”

Bryony stared out of the window at some distant mountains. “It must be nice to have a vocation.”

“Don’t you have one?”

“I had a garden design business, but after Mum moved in with me I sold it so I’d have the time and money to look after her. You can’t run a business and be a carer. They’re both full-time jobs.”

“So start a new business. It sounds as if you don’t have a family of your own to take up your time.”

Bryony shook her head, still staring out of the window and into the past. “I was in a relationship, but my business got in the way. That was even before Mum got worse. Since then I’ve been too busy for that sort of thing.”

A cloud of melancholy settled on her shoulders. She couldn’t find the energy to shrug it off.

Carl’s voice filtered through. “I’ll be filming for most the next few days, then I’ll be going back to LA. Would you like to come with me?”

It took a while for his words to register, then Bryony gaped at him. “You’re asking me come with you to Hollywood? We only known each other an hour.”

“Why not? It’ll be a break for you. Maybe a leg up. I could take you round the sights, get you into the A-list parties, introduce you to the big players… That sort of thing.”

Bryony couldn’t hide the shudder. “Thank you, but that doesn’t interest me at all. Especially with the press following you around all the time. Besides, won’t your partner be upset about a strange woman tagging along behind you?”

Carl gaped back at her. “You really don’t go in for gossip, do you? I’ve just come out of a very messy divorce. No attachments, and no plans for more.” He turned up the charm. “I just thought you might like to put yourself first for a change. Spread your wings a little. Have some R&R.” He probably wasn’t aware of his eyes dropping to Bryony’s breasts as he said that, but she was.

I wonder what he has in mind? Yes, that was sarcasm. I suppose I should be flattered – a big Hollywood star taking an interest in little old me – but in reality he’s just another randy young, or in this case not-so-young man looking for a hump. Nothing wrong with that in itself, but am I looking for the same thing?

It’s been a while. I have no other commitments, as Carl so kindly pointed out. And I do owe him for what he did for me. Lunch doesn’t really cover it, so what else do I have to offer?

Bryony gazed at him thoughtfully. “Thanks, but no thanks. I just want to get home to England.” She steeled herself. “But a little… R&R does sound nice. Do you know of anywhere private near here?”

Surprised, his eyes widened, followed by his smile. “We’re close to one of the local wilderness parks. Lots of privacy there if you go well off the trails.”

Open air sex? I haven’t done that since I was at college. It’s okay so long as you avoid the bites, stings, thorns and voyeurs. What the Hell, no harm in a little déjà vu.



It was a beautiful little clearing in the forest, Bryony had to admit. She recognised the plants from her degree course but this was the first time she’d seen some of them au naturel. The ground was covered with dead leaves and pine needles, so once the Hulks had spread out the rugs from the limos, it was almost cosy. Not very erotic so far as she was concerned, but this wasn’t her party.

Once the bodyguards had retired to a decent distance, Carl put his arms around her waist and drew her into a kiss. Bryony was shocked twice over.

The first shock was that he was shorter than her, although that was the case with most men. His charm and charisma had made him seem taller.

Second was that for Hollywood’s current hottest heartthrob, he was a really awful kisser. Clearly it wasn’t part of the curriculum at his acting classes. If he’d practised on anything other than a mirror or his hand, the other party hadn’t tried to improve him. Bryony wasn’t inclined to take on the job.

Okay, it could be nicer but I’m not here to be swept off my feet. Not in the romantic sense, anyway.

On cue, Carl slid one hand up the front of her body to her breasts. He squeezed and kneaded them with all the tenderness and subtlety of an over-eager adolescent. Bryony squeaked when he pinched a nipple too hard. “Gently, please!”

“Sorry,” he muttered, then reached down and clumsily pulled her jumper off over her head. Her ears nearly came off with it.

Good Grief he’s either desperate, ignorant or just plain selfish. Or is he more used to women doing things to him instead of the other way around? Whatever - let’s get this over with.

Bryony wasn’t surprised that he couldn’t manage to unfasten her bra, so she did it for him. As soon as her breasts were bare he grabbed them again and closed his mouth around a nipple, sucking on it like a starving infant. He bit like one as well, but with more than milk teeth.

Bryony yelped and pushed him away. To divert him she unbuttoned his shirt and pushed it off his shoulders, then knelt down and started on his chinos. There was a bulge behind the scenes but when she finally worked down his underpants, it was no surprise to see he was built on the petite scale.

“Suck it. Suck it,” he moaned.

Bryony shook her head. “Sorry, I don’t do that.” She fought against a growing panic. Things weren’t turning out at all the way she’d intended, or expected.

Being charitable is one thing. Being insanely stupid is something else. This could turn very bad very fast. If the Hulks decide to pile in on his side, I’m in deep… trouble. Go with it, but on my terms.

She spat on the head of Carl’s erection for lubrication and squeezed her breasts around it. He took the hint right away and started to thrust vigorously between them. Under other circumstances Bryony might have enjoyed it, but right now she was too busy trying to think one step ahead.

I was expecting to let him have me. I pretty much told him outright that’s what was I was offering. I have to go through with it, but keep it under my control.

“Don’t come yet. Let me get a condom so we can do it for real.”

Thankfully he took that hint as well and shuffled back. Bryony rummaged in her bag and unearthed the battered box still sealed in its cellophane wrapping. It was due to expire in a few weeks. Doesn’t that say everything there is to say about my sex life to date? she thought sadly as she freed one of the condoms from its foil cocoon.

Gently she rolled the rubber over Carl’s erection, quickly stripped off the rest of her clothes and lay back on the rug.

“Do you do anal?” he panted as he knelt between her legs.

Oh, oh. This is definitely getting bad. The only good thing is that at least he asked. “Only when I’m fresh out of the shower,” she lied. Never have, never will, she thought it safest not to say out loud.

Her luck held. Carl simply stretched out on top of her, not even taking his weight on his elbows, found roughly the right spot – rough being exactly the right word – and started to thrust. Bryony was barely damp so the fact that he wasn’t built on a grand scale was a blessing.

The final blessing was that Carl came within seconds. “That was great!” he gasped as he rolled off.

You really thought that was great? You poor sod. Either you’ve had some truly terrible lovers, or they’ve all been too starstruck to set you straight. Well, I’m not going to get mixed up in that mess.

“It was wonderful. Thank you so much!” She sat up and started to gather her clothes together. “Time’s getting on. You have to get back to town before you hold up production even more.”

“True.” He started getting dressed as well. “Are you sure I can’t tempt you to Hollywood?”

Bryony gazed at him thoughtfully while she put on her bra. You’re a weird one. You interrupted a film shoot without thinking just to get a stranger to her medicine. And then you behaved like some sex-mad misogynist who has no idea how to make love to a woman properly. Is it because you’re an actor? You’ve played so many parts over the years, you’ve forgotten who you really are?

Or am simply I expecting too much? People are complicated. No-one is perfect all the way through.

Besides, two hours is nowhere near long enough to get to know anyone properly. Some people don’t manage that after a lifetime of marriage. Remember Carl’s kindness and forget the rest.

“I’m sure.”



Bryony smiled and waved as Carl drove off back to Manhattan with Ricky riding shotgun alongside the chauffeur. As soon as he’d gone out of sight, she sighed with relief and turned away.

“Sorry about that, Miss Temple,” said Jermyn quietly.

Flushing, she glanced up at him. “What do you mean? Sorry about what?”

“About you having to… you know. I mean, some women are keen, like they’re getting a special autograph all their own. I could tell you weren’t like that. You felt obliged to do it, didn’t you?”

She couldn’t look him in the eye. “In a way. Carl- Mr Cornell- didn’t force me or anything,” she added hurriedly. “And after all, he had done me a great favour, so I just felt I should… do him a favour in return. Anyway, how do you know what we did?”

He grimaced. “I’ve worked for the studio a few years. I see things, so it wasn’t difficult to work out. From the rumours I hear about Mr Cornell, you probably didn’t get much out of it.”

Bryony sighed again. “Nothing I’ll want to remember tomorrow, that’s for sure. Come on, let’s go.”

“Where to, Miss Temple?”

Startled, she stared at him. “I assumed you’d want to take me back to my hotel?”

Jermyn shrugged. “It’s up to you, Miss Temple. My job is to look after you. To keep the press away. Cedric-” he gestured to the chauffeur “-and I are at your disposal until you leave the US.”

“Oh, well, in that case… Can we just go for a drive for a while? Not back to Manhattan yet – I don’t like cities much. The countryside around here is so lovely, it’s hard to believe it’s still New York.”

“Suits me, Miss. I don’t get out into the sticks as much as I like. Cedric? The grand tour, please.”



Bryony watched the scenery slide by the car window.

I didn’t know there was so much more to New York. I assumed it was all streets and tenements and cars and gangs… I guess that’s all we ever get to hear about. Forests and lakes and mountains don’t make good headlines.

I suppose if I was a New Yorker going to England, I’d make the same mistake. Everyone knows about London. Who knows about the Downs or the Peak District or the Forest of Dean?

Should I have taken up Carl’s offer of a guided tour around LA? It doesn’t sound like the place for me, but then neither did New York. And it’s not as if I need to get back home in a hurry.

She pulled a face. I wish I hadn’t… sold myself to Carl. Okay, no actual money changed hands, but it was definitely a payment in kind situation. He’d been far more considerate to me Saturday night than anyone could have expected, but so what? I’d already said ‘thank you’ and bought him lunch. A true gentleman wouldn’t have expected more. A true gentleman wouldn’t have accepted more.

But why blame Carl? Being a Hollywood star doesn’t automatically make him an angel. It certainly doesn’t give him the chance to live a normal life among normal people learning normal life lessons.

Carl was a mistake. Learn from it and move on. You have your own life to lead now.

She eased around in her seat and checked her watch. She gasped when she realised she’d been staring out of the window in silence for nearly an hour. “Sorry,” she apologised to Jermyn. “I don’t mean to be rude.”

“A lot on your mind, Miss,” he rumbled. It was a statement, not a question. “I couldn’t help overhearing what you said in the diner. Sorry to hear about your Mom.”

She sighed. “Thank you. How about you, Jermyn? What do you do for a living when you’re not keeping naïve young women from being ravaged by the press pack?”

He chuckled. “Mostly I’m a personal bodyguard, these days. A bit of concierge work as well. Whatever the studio wants.”

In his eyes there was a hint of… sadness? Resignation? Regret? Bryony eyed him shrewdly. “What is it you want to do?”

It was his turn to sigh. “I used to be a professional footballer. Good at it, too. Earning good money. Then I got too many big hits. Too many concussions. Now I’m banned from playing professionally. That’s why I moved into the muscle market.”

“Don’t you get paid well by the studio?”

“Sure, but nothing like what a pro footballer makes. I was using that to help my family. Mom, Pop and eight kids. I’m the eldest. I was paying for a decent house, decent healthcare, a decent education for my brothers and sisters. I’ve had to cut back on all that.”

“No girlfriend?”

He shook his head ruefully. “No time.”

“Tell me about it. Did you go to university – I mean, college?”

“Sure did,” he said with pride. “It’s where I got into football, although my degree is in horticulture.”

Bryony’s ears pricked. “Is it, now? Not much call for it, I guess.”

“Not much,” Jermyn agreed. “Especially for someone who looks like a professional footballer.”

Bryony looked at him properly for the first time since they’d met. He must be getting on for seven feet tall. Massive shoulders. Solid muscle. If he doesn’t play sport any more, he must spend hours in the gym. And yet he doesn’t look out of proportion, like most bodybuilders I’ve seen. As for his face… fine, sensitive, intelligent, caring. Totally out of tune with his body.

And speaking as a woman, I should know better than to judge someone on their appearance.

“My first name is Bryony. Have you heard that name before?”

He smiled, knowing she was testing him. “Depends. White Bryony, Bryonia dioica, is a scrambling climber. Like a cucumber. Black Bryony now, Tamus communis, is a twining climber, like a yam. Which one are you?”

“Definitely a scrambler.” She studied him in silence for a few moments. “Let’s get back to town. I need to scrub myself clean and have some tea.”



Cedric the chauffeur dropped them off in a quiet side street a few blocks from Bryony’s hotel. At the final corner, they peered around it. A few members of the pack were still camped outside.

Bryony swore. “They can’t still want to talk to me, surely? They must know I’m not with Carl.”

“Maybe not now, Miss Temple, but you were. That’s what keeps them interested.”

An idea gently nudged her. “Unless we can persuade them that Carl isn’t of interest to me. Listen. We’re going to walk up to the front door of the hotel arm-in-arm. I’ll tell the press that all Carl did was to get me into the hotel. You are the person with whom I’m romantically involved.”

Jermyn the Giant actually backed away from her. His expression was a mix of horror and terror – almost enough to make Bryony laugh. “You can’t be serious, Miss! You can’t do that! You can’t let them think you’re hooked up with someone like me! You’ll get yourself into so much trouble!”

“Jermyn, so far as the US press is concerned I’m an eccentric Englishwoman. Not only can I do what the Hell I like, it’s almost expected of me. Supposedly I’ve got centuries of aristocratic breeding behind me. Actually my grandmother was a factory worker, but let’s not spoil a good story. Now let me take your arm. When I squeeze your hand, you kiss me. That’s an order.”



They recognised Jermyn first – not surprising, given his size. When the pack saw a woman holding onto his arm, it didn’t take them long to put two and two together. Bryony and Jermyn were soon surrounded by cameras, lights and too many people asking too many questions at once. She ignored the questions and made her own statement instead.

“I’m here as a tourist. I was in Times Square when I started to get a migraine. I’d left my tablets in my hotel room. The studio’s security guards wouldn’t let me past. When Mr Cornell found out, he got me through the cordon. I’m very grateful to him for that, especially because it meant I was introduced to Jermyn here. He’s a wonderful man and I’m enjoying every minute of his company.”

She squeezed Jermyn’s hand. He looked down at her with a frozen smile - luckily only she was close enough to see the fear in his eyes. She squeezed his hand harder, so he slowly bent down and gave her the briefest peck on the cheek.

Not good enough. Putting her free hand behind his head, Bryony hauled Jermyn into a full-on kiss. She could feel him trying to pull away, but she was holding him so tight he would have to hoist her off the ground.

Some seconds later – they probably felt like hours to Jermyn – she let him go and turned to smile at the press again. Their interest was already waning, so she nodded to them and walked serenely on into the hotel, dragging Jermyn with her.



With the door to her room locked behind them, Bryony and her public partner laughed themselves breathless. “Miss Temple, I’d rather run into a whole defensive line than tangle with you!”

“I’ll take that as a compliment.” Bryony hauled herself off her chair and staggered towards the bathroom. “I’m off for a shower or two. Order us some room service – anything you like. And call me Bryony. Miss Temple isn’t going to cut it anymore.”

Bryony had a thorough shower and cleaned her teeth, then went around a second time. She still didn’t feel clean, but it didn’t take a degree in psychology to know why. The memory will fade eventually. Maybe sooner, if I can replace it with a better one.

The hotel-issue bathrobe was short for someone of her height, so Bryony wasn’t surprised when Jermyn’s eyes bugged when she reappeared. “You’ve seen a woman’s legs before, surely?”

He swallowed and looked away. “Yes, but not on a client.”

“I’m not a client, Jermyn. I’m Bryony. Have you ordered room service?”

“Yes, Miss- Yes, Bryony. Should be here in about ten minutes.”

“Good. Plenty of time.” Jermyn was sat on the small settee in one corner of the room. Before he could react, Bryony clambered onto his lap, knees either side of his thighs, cupped his face in her hands and kissed him.

He jumped and tried to pull back, but Bryony wouldn’t be put off. She moved her head with his, tongue exploring his closed lips and worming between them. Finally he relaxed and his lips parted, sharing her kiss. Returning it. If he really hadn’t wanted to do this, he could have pushed me away with one finger. Instead his hands went around her back, holding her against him.

The short robe had ridden up to her waist. With nothing on underneath it, she could feel Jermyn becoming aroused. It felt… good. Flattering. Encouraging, not threatening like Carl’s modest erection. It also felt a lot bigger than Carl’s. Definitely in proportion to the rest of him.

Their kiss lasted until a knock on the door announced the arrival of their room service order. “I’ll deal with this,” said Bryony, getting off Jermyn’s lap. “You go have a shower to freshen up. It’s been a long day.” And it isn’t over yet.

She arranged the food on the worktable. Just as she finished, Jermyn poked his head around the bathroom door. “Is there another robe I can use?”

Bryony shook her head. “There was only this one. You can have it if you like but if it doesn’t fit me properly, it certainly won’t fit you. Don’t worry on my account.”

Jermyn vanished back into the bathroom. A few moments later he reappeared wearing only his striped undershorts. They looked ridiculous, but the rest of him took Bryony’s breath away. Magnificent. I mean really, really magnificent. Michelangelo would have thought he’d died and gone to Heaven if Jermyn had turned up to model for him.

“Since you’re going topless...” She shrugged off her bathrobe. Jermyn hurriedly sat opposite her and fixed his attention on the food.

Bryony managed to get a conversation going although she couldn’t get Jermyn to look up. In the end she gave up, got up and went over to the tea & coffee tray on the dressing table. “Which one?” she asked, holding up a mug in one hand and a cup in the other. He’ll have to look at me now.

He did, flickeringly, then looked down at his plate and cleared his throat. “Uh, a mug’ll be fine.”

Waiting for the kettle to boil gave Bryony time to brood. Why am I doing this? What do I want to happen? Well, that of course. But why? And why Jermyn? He obviously isn’t sure about it, so why am I persisting?

Because he’s the nicest man I’ve ever met. Kind. Polite. Gentle. Thoughtful. Considerate. Loyal. Puts family first. Puts others before himself. I want to give him a taste of the freedom I now have.

All very noble, but do I want to force him to do something that maybe he really doesn’t want to do?

“Jermyn, can I ask you a straight question? And will you give me a straight answer?”

His eyes flicked up at her and away again. “Uh, yeah, I guess so. Depends.”

“You know I’m trying to seduce you, don’t you?”

He smiled uneasily. “Uh, it sure looks that way to me!”

“Do you want me to carry on?”

There was a long silence while Jermyn fiddled with a fork. “I shouldn’t…”

“That wasn’t what I asked. Do you want me to?”

“You shouldn’t…” His glance caught her glare. “Sorry. I guess… I guess… yes.” The last word was whispered.

“Fine. In that case, strip while I make the coffee.” She busied herself with the mugs, trying to ignore Jermyn as he slowly stood up and took off his undershorts.

“Come and get it,” she said once the coffee was ready. Turning, she saw Jermyn naked for the first time. Her eyes widened and her mouth dried. He was fully erect and definitely built to scale. Magnificent didn’t cover it, in any sense.

He approached slowly, shyly. Bryony took his hand and led him to the bed, then gently pushed him back onto it. Even though it was King-size, his feet still stuck some way off the end.

She followed him onto the bed, kneeling astride his shins. Leaning forward, she studied his erection closely, then closed her eyes and took the head into her mouth.

I thought you didn’t do this?

I don’t, normally. This is more like… like… exploring a beautiful sculpture. He tastes… not much of anything right now. A touch of salt. A little spice. Mostly it’s the texture and the shape.

She tried to imagine how she would like a man to use his mouth on her, and did the same to Jermyn. From the way he moaned and moved, she must have been doing something right. He started to taste even more salty and spicy, and… something else. Tangy. At that moment he eased her head away.

“You better stop, Miss- Bryony, or I’ll come,” he murmured.

“Thanks for warning me.” A true gentleman. Carl wouldn’t have bothered. “Was I doing it right?”

“It was fantastic! It’s never been that good before.”

Bryony polished her fingernails on the lapel she wasn’t wearing. “Thanks! That’s just for starters. Now for the main course.” She retrieved the box of condoms from her bag. Back on the bed she rolled one down Jermyn’s erection then straddled his hips. Slowly, carefully, she impaled herself.

It felt as if she was trying to slide a rolling pin into her body. Lack of lubrication wasn’t the problem - that was trickling out of her. It was Jermyn’s sheer size. She bobbed slowly up and down, every time sliding further down his erection, until finally her hips were pressed hard against his and he was embedded inside her. She had never felt so stretched, so full, so… taken.

“You feel so good,” she breathed. “And so big! Hold still while I get used to it.” She pressed his massive hands to her breasts. “Play with these while we wait.” He squeezed, stroked and caressed her breasts and nipples far more sensuously than any man had before. Pleasure flowed from them to her groin, merging with the waves coming the other way.

Bryony couldn’t wait any longer. Rocking her hips slowly, gently, she began to ride him. Every movement of his erection inside her sent a mix of pleasure and pain pulsing through her. At last Jermyn couldn’t keep himself in check. His hips arched to meet hers. His thrusts became deeper, stronger, more powerful. Bryony wanted him to stop, wanted him never to stop. A huge climax crashed into her, shaking her helplessly while Jermyn carried on thrusting relentlessly.

Only when her orgasm ebbed away, leaving her bonelessly limp, did she realise that Jermyn was holding her full weight easily above him. He was using her almost as a sex toy. With no energy left to take an active role, she was relieved. If her body alone could please him, that was fine with her.

With a deep groan his climax gripped him. His final thrust went full depth inside her, then she felt him swelling and pulsing as he ejaculated. The discomfort was drowned in the sense of smug satisfaction that she was giving him the most intense pleasure any man could feel.

*

Sunlight seeping around the curtains woke her. The clock showed eight a.m. It took a few seconds for Bryony to work out where she was, then she smiled. At that moment a huge arm came around her from behind and pulled her back against an equally huge body. She wriggled against it happily.

How many years has it been since I woke up in bed with a man? Especially one like Jermyn? Not just a wonderful lover, but a wonderful person. A once-in-a-lifetime find. Wait until I tell…

Her smile faded but then came back. She’d have been thrilled. Her biggest worry was that she was stopping me finding the man of my dreams. Well, I never dreamed about anyone quite like Jermyn, and four days isn’t a lifetime, but it’s a start. A declaration of intent.

She rolled over, snuggled up against Jermyn again and gave him a long kiss. She felt his penis twitch against her thighs but they were both too worn out after yesterday evening’s… exercises.

Bryony broke the kiss. They stared into each other’s eyes contentedly, then she broke the silence as well. “We’re going to have to go out for more condoms. We used all the ones I had last night.”

Jermyn stopped smiling and leaned back. “Are you serious? I thought last night… I mean, wasn’t this a one-night stand?”

She shook her head. “I don’t do those. You’re a good man, Jermyn, and I don’t just mean a good lover. I’d like to spend more time with you. A lot more. Do you mind?”

He looked surprised. “Of course not. I just thought… you know. But if you really would like to spend time with me then I sure would like to spend time with you. You’re wonderful!”

Bryony kissed him again, rolled out of bed and stretched. “I’m off for a shower. Would you come with me, please? I want to run something by you.”

There wasn’t room in the shower for both of them so Jermyn sat on the floor of the bathroom. Bryony kept the shower screen open so she could talk. And so he could watch.

“I studied horticulture at university as well,” she started as she soaped herself. “How about you and I go into business together? I don’t have any ties in the UK anymore.”

His eyes slid up from her suds-covered body, and he gaped. “Are you serious?”

“Very. The fact that I’m English could work well for us. Non-UK gardeners love the English style. The thing is, we wouldn’t be earning much, at least in the beginning. What about your family?”

He thought about it. “I’ve got enough put by to get Jessy through college, then she can put Joel through college and so on down the line. All right, let’s do it. One question, though.”

Bryony wiped wet hair out of her eyes. “Which is?”

“Is this a just a business arrangement, or something more… personal?”

She picked up the sponge and lathered it up. “Swap places with me and let’s see, shall we?”

Ends

About the author



Lindsay lives in the English countryside with a loving spouse, two equally wonderful children and assorted pets who have their affectionate moments – usually when they’re hungry. Writing is an occasional pastime, the genre of choice being adult-themed short stories from the female perspective. The goal isn’t fabulous riches, but simply to entertain.



All the Warming Stories collections are available for free download from SmashWords:

Volume One www.smashwords.com/books/view/562011

Volume Two www.smashwords.com/books/view/582234

Volume Three www.smashwords.com/books/view/611521

and from major online eBook retailers such as Barnes & Noble, Kobo and Apple.



If you also like full-length romance novels, you should try www.christinahollis.com



This story, and the characters within it are pure fiction. Any resemblance to real people or events is entirely coincidental.

All characters depicted in sexual acts in this work of fiction are 18 years of age or older





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