The remembrance comes in waves.
It starts with her eyes opening on a room unfamiliar even in the darkness: the walls, shrouded by night, feel a little further away than she’s used to; the noises coming through the open window are different, sounds of the city, not of her quiet suburban street; the sheets that have ridden down to rest just below the stubbled hairs of her cunt are thicker, more expensive than the ones at home. As she shifts, they glide smoothly across her legs: a rare luxury.
Sleeping naked. She never sleeps naked.
Why now? Why here?
It continues with a sound at her side; not quite a snore, but an exhalation so deep and sudden that it feels for a moment as though someone is trying to get her attention. She freezes, waits to see if he stirs further, but no. He rests there, the man from the night before – the current night, even; dawn is only just starting to creep through the window off to her right, through the blinds closed in far too much of a hurry in their eagerness. She remembers him, although it takes her a minute; the fog of sleep hasn’t quite lifted, and in the darkness it’s hard to bring his face to mind.
And last but not least, there is the ache: a different sort of ache than she left the house with last night, but an ache nonetheless. She winces as she sits up in bed, feeling the fresh tenderness of her cunt with every movement. How long had it been since she was fucked like that? How long since she was fucked at all?
Too long. Far, far too long.
That had been the plan, of course – not hers, but that of her friends from out of town. Go on, they said. Live a little. Let your hair down. She had gone along with it, more out of politeness than anything else. A few drinks and an early taxi back home. No harm done. They had teased her gently for sitting on the sidelines as they danced and chatted, flirting with every man who caught their eye, always the centre of attention.
But not her. Not her style – and if it had been once (and it must have been once, she was sure of it), she was long since out of practice. It didn’t seem to have hurt.
They left. She stayed. The last time she had seen them, they had been winking at her from across the bar – lewdly, knowingly – as she urged them over his shoulder to leave the two of them alone. He kissed her shortly afterwards. She found that she enjoyed it.
And that was that.
She stands, stretches. The room is lighter now, or her eyes have adjusted, and she can make out the shape of him. The sheets are coiled down around at his feet, manoeuvred off in sleep to expose himself to as much of the summer air as possible, cooling him down after his early-morning exertion. Uncovered, he stretches out in the bed like the silhouette of a marble Adonis; his cock is half-hard, long and thick, heavy against his thigh. She wonders idly if there are still traces of her lipstick at the base, and smiles. She hopes so. It’s only fair he have something to remember her by.
She shifts uncomfortably, regretting her sudden urge to be upright. His cock was bigger than she was used to, the fuck rougher and more raw. He fucked like it was hunt: wild and animalistic, with survival on the line. She had found herself swept along by his intensity, by his need for her. The wine had helped, but there was more to it than that. There was a charm about him, a certain way that he had of putting her at ease. (The wine had helped with that too.) He had told her she was beautiful, and she had believed him. When he asked her up to his room, he had looked so earnest and sincere that the desire in his eyes had seemed complimentary rather than predatory.
Well, he had caught her, well and truly. Her swollen lips and the continued throbbing in her abdomen stand as a testament to that.
She heads over to the window and tilts the blinds to one side slightly, suddenly profoundly aware of her nakedness. The city below her is asleep, the lights blinking in the darkness but the roads empty. She must be, what, ten storeys up? Fifteen? It’s hard to judge. One-night stands in expensive hotels aren’t something she’s used to. Perhaps she has been missing out.
She takes a seat by the immense glass panel and looks out over the view of the city. A room like this must have cost a fortune – or had it? She thinks for a second, willing herself to remember through the haze of wine and lust. Had he mentioned something about that? A business trip? Out of town? Expenses? It sounded familiar, but only in the fleeting recollection way that an old Facebook acquaintance might – someone once known, and barely missed. A lot of the last night feels like that. She remembers parts, of course.
And in the bathroom, beforehand – staring at herself in the mirror, asking herself if she was really going to do this?
Why the hesitation? Drunkenness? No – well, a little – but more than that. Something nagging at her. Something she can’t quite place.
Surely not a lack of attraction; he is, even sprawled out in sleep, one of the most beautiful men she has ever seen in her life. She remembers the surprise that he seemed interested in her, the way it had race onward through to their first kiss, the stripping off of clothes and…
She shifts uncomfortably in her chair, a raw flare lighting up between her legs. It will be a long time before she can forget that. Not that she minds, of course; if anything, the reminder is welcome. So daring. So unlike her.
Except maybe not.
Maybe this is who she is now. Maybe this is what she is now: the kind of girl who will follow a man up to his hotel room, drop to her knees in front of him, bend over on rented sheets that he can split her wetness with a cock larger than any she has any she has seen before.
She stops herself, then stops her stopping. Why should she? What’s so wrong with a little sluttishness once in a while? What’s so wrong with giving in to your base desires, enjoying the feeling of fullness and liberation as an almost-perfect almost-stranger takes you, fucks you, uses you? What could be so wrong with that?
Yes, a slut – and what of it? She smiles to herself, seeing herself in the glass, superimposed over the city. It’s a brand new day. It’s a brand new her. The world, such as it is, looks different new. Richer. Deeper. If she’d only known, she might have done this years ago.
Maybe. Except for that nagging doubt.
He shifts in his sleep, and she sees it. She wishes she hadn’t, wishes she could take it back and retain the memory just for a moment longer, but it’s there when she turns to him: visible, garish, incontrovertible.
The flash of gold on the ring finger of his left hand reflects the first streaks of light through the blinds.
Oh, she thinks. That’s why.
Just in town for one night.
Are you really going to do this?
But it was so easy. Being with him was so fucking easy. That charm. Those eyes. The attention he offered her, after so very, very long… The fucking had just been the icing on the cake; the ache in her cunt a hangover for a night she hadn’t regretted, not at all, even though she knew he should.
Are you really going to do this?
Well, the question is answered. She chooses not to think of what that might mean.
She dresses hurriedly, silently, afraid to wake him until she can close the door gently behind her, feeling the one-way lock click irrevocably closed on an evening she barely remembers.
And that is that.
She beats the dawn down to the street, and has hailed a taxi before he has even had time to forget her name.