Shape

Best Friend Reunion

It’s been 15 years since I’ve last seen Danielle. When I moved away from our hometown in Grand Rapids, Michigan, to take a job all the way across the country in Sacramento, California, I didn’t think I’d ever see Danielle again. We were fresh out of college, and though we’d been best friends since high school and we’d fooled around maybe a half-dozen or so times as college freshman, we managed to fall out of touch not long after I’d moved. I was too busy with the new job, the miles between us were too vast, and soon Danielle became no more than a receding memory from a distant life.

 

So when I get an email from Danielle, saying she’s going to be in Sacramento over the weekend on a work conference and would I like to meet up, I have to admit I’m apprehensive. I mean, 15 years is a long time. People can change a lot in 15 years. I know I have. I’m no longer the wide-eyed and impressionable little girl I’d been back then, but a high-powered political assistant at the State Capitol. I report directly to the governor’s office. My Rolodex would embarrass you. I don’t have enough time for a vacation, let alone guests. It can be lonely at times, sure, but when some man—probably one of the boys who used to kick my seat in grade school—nervously knocks on my office door, clutches a binder to his chest, and says, “Miss Thayer, umm, here’s the report you requested,” I’m reminded that it’s all worth it.

 

Danielle’s email doesn’t offer anything about her work conference or what kind of work she does, but she signs off with “God bless,” which definitely catches my eye. To be honest, I assume it’s some kind of joke. Neither of us had been religious in school. I even recall a moment, during our freshman year, when Danielle and I were still occasionally hooking up. I was going down on her in her dorm room, and as she was about to orgasm, she shouted out such profane and blasphemous words I was worried that her neighbors in her hall would report us as Satanists.

 

Nevertheless, I write her back the following morning, suggesting we meet for lunch at my favorite deli downtown. She emails back right away: “Great!” she writes. “So excited to see you, Chrissy!!!”

 

Getting ready to go and meet Danielle, I dress in what I call my “closing” outfit: black heels, knee-length skirt, and dark blazer over a white button-up shirt. It’s what I wear when I’m meeting with officials or corporate executives and I want to close a deal. I don’t know why I choose this for my meeting with Danielle. Maybe I only want to show off.

 

But when I get to the deli and see Danielle already seated at an outdoor table, I immediately regret my wardrobe choice. She’s dressed casually in a gauzy yellow dress and simple flip flops. Her auburn hair, which she’d always kept short, is now well past her shoulders. My heart swells unexpectedly when our eyes meet.

 

“Chrissy!” Danielle shouts, standing and spreading her arms wide.

 

“Danielle,” I say, hugging her. She’s just as skinny as ever, and her hair, though longer, still smells like the tangerine shampoo she’s always used. “How are you, dear?”

 

“I’m super,” she says. “I’m so happy to see you. How are you, Chrissy?”

 

“I’m swell,” I say. “Let’s have a seat. Are you hungry? Have you already ordered? Would you like a drink? Did you find the place all right?”

 

I’m surprised to find myself babbling like this. I’m usually much more composed, but seeing Danielle now, smelling her tangerine hair, brings me instantly back to our cramped dorm rooms, our messy bedsheets, our sweaty bodies pressed against each other. I remember the taste of her on my lips, the guttural sounds she made when she came, like she was speaking in tongues. I remember my legs wrapped around her head, begging her maniacally to shove her entire face inside my pussy.

 

I shift in my chair. Get it together, Christine.

 

“So anyway,” I say. “What brings you to Sacramento?”

 

“Oh, just a boring work conference,” Danielle says. “Not that interesting. But tell me about yourself. You look phenomenal, by the way. You look like somebody’s boss.”

 

A server comes to our table and asks us what we’d like. I order a glass of expensive rosé. Danielle skims the drink menu for a conspicuously long time before settling on a glass of sparkling water.

 

“Oh, no you don’t,” I say. “Bring her a glass of rosé also. I’m treating.”

 

The server says thank you and walks away. Danielle laughs. “I knew it,” she says. “You’re somebody’s boss, aren’t you?”

 

“Danielle, dear,” I say, grinning. “I’m my own boss.”

 

I tell Danielle about my job—the closed-door meetings, the disputes with political opponents, the secret meetings, the governor’s secret transgressions, the backbiting and name-calling that is Sacramento politics. Danielle nods politely as I talk, and I realize I’m still trying to impress her. This is my oldest best friend. Why am I trying so hard? More important, why is my heart beating so hard?

 

Our server mercifully returns with our wine. I hold my glass up. “Cheers,” I say. “To old friends.”

 

“To old friends, reunited at last!” Danielle says. We clink glasses and drink deeply.

 

“So anyway,” I say. “Now that I’ve bored you to death with my job, I’ll hand it over to you. Out with it, dear. Tell me. What’s this conference all about? What exactly do you do for work?”

 

Danielle blushes and looks away. “Well OK,” she says. “If you must know. I’m a minister in the Episcopal Church.”

 

I almost spit out my rosé. “You’re a what now?”

 

“I know, crazy, right?” Danielle says. “Long story short, I was feeling lost after finishing college. I drifted around town, drinking too much, having loads of casual and meaningless sex, and then one Sunday morning, as I was making my usual walk-of-shame home, something guided me into the Episcopal church for service. I ended up returning every Sunday. And eventually I felt called to the ministry. I studied, attended seminary, so on and so forth, and after about three years of training, I was finally ordained to the priesthood! I’ve served as minister of the church for five years, praise to God!”

 

The long silence that follows is only broken by our server returning, asking if we’d like to order anything else.

 

“Another glass of rosé,” I say. “Actually, you can just go ahead and bring the whole bottle, please.”

 

“Good idea,” Danielle says and laughs.

 

“Oh wait,” I say. “But are you, like, allowed to drink?”

 

Danielle laughs again. “Of course I can, silly. Episcopalians aren’t Puritans. Besides, it’s nice to have a drink and catch up with my old best friend.”

 

Our server returns with the bottle and fills our glasses. Now Danielle lifts her glass up. “Anyway,” she says and winks. “I’m off the clock.”

 

We click glasses again and drink even more deeply.

 

We’re at the diner for over two hours, catching up on old gossip, laughing at old stories, reminiscing about the old days. Dusk is coming on. We’re on our second bottle of rosé. It feels like the past 15 years have fallen away and Danielle and I are kids again, getting drunk together on a school night. I’ve forgotten all my work responsibilities, all the office bullshit. It’s just Danielle and I in this moment, giggling together like we used to.

 

I’d noticed earlier that Danielle isn’t wearing a wedding ring. I’d also noticed that she, after all these years, still doesn’t wear a bra, and now, feeling the effects of the wine, I’m finding it difficult to keep my eyes from drifting down to her chest. I’m having trouble not thinking back to those nights I’d cup her small breasts in my hands and bite down on her nipples, hearing her moan with pain and pleasure.

 

Shit. She’s a goddamn priest now, Christine. Keep it together. Or what? Or I’ll go to hell?

 

“Tell me, dear,” I say, feeling a little brash and more than a little tipsy. “You must be married to some handsome young Episcopalian stud, yeah?”

 

Danielle blushes again. “I don’t know what you’ve heard about Episcopalians,” she says, “but we’re a bit lacking in the stud department. Unfortunately for me! No, I mean, I do love being in the ministry. Honestly I do. There’s no greater gift one could receive than being called to do God’s work on Earth. But between you and me, Chrissy? Can you keep a secret?”

 

“Sure,” I say. “Of course I can.”

 

“Well, sometimes,” she says, looking away. “I get to thinking about, you know, freshman year? With you and me? You know what I mean?”

 

“Sure,” I say again, trying to keep my voice steady. “That was—well, we were so young, Dani. We were, you know, experimenting?”

 

“Experimenting?” Danielle says and laughs. “You make it sound like we were wearing white lab coats and pouring baking soda into glass beakers. No, we weren’t experimenting, Chrissy. We knew what we were doing. And, anyway, well—no, I shouldn’t be saying this.”

 

“Saying what, Dani? Tell me.”

 

“I don’t know,” she says, turning now to look into my eyes. “Sometimes I just think about you.”

 

My heart plummets straight down into my gut, like a stone dropped into a well. I shift in my seat again.

 

For fuck’s sake, Christine, get it together. You’ve had men beg you just for the opportunity to carry your briefcase. You’ve reduced hapless interns to tears for sport. You’re your own goddamn boss, goddamn it.

 

“Oh?” I finally manage to say. “What do you—um, think about?”

 

Danielle takes a breath, looks at me, then brings her wine glass to her lips and swallows the rest of her rosé. “Do you live close to here?” she says.

 

We take an Uber to my flat in Natomas Park. I fumble with my keys for a moment, then unlock my front door and push it open. I close the door behind us, then slide my heels off before walking into the living room and clicking on a lamp. Danielle slips off her sandals and paces the floor, taking survey of my home.

 

“My my,” she says, nodding her head. “God surely has blessed you.”

 

“No offense to God,” I say. “But this is the result of years of hard work and determination.”

 

“Look, Chrissy,” Danielle says. “I don’t mean to be that annoying Christian that needs to talk about God all the time, but have you ever given any thought to a Higher Power? Something greater than yourself? Haven’t you ever felt scared or, you know, lost? Haven’t you ever called out to God?”

 

I let out a laugh, but right away I feel bad for laughing. “I’m sorry, Danielle. That was rude of me. But no, I’ve never, as you say, ‘called out to God.’ I don’t have time. I have more than enough calls during the week, thank you very much. Business calls, conference calls, courtesy calls, reservations, FaceTime. I’m sorry, but 70-hour work weeks don’t leave a lot of time for spiritual contemplation.”

 

Danielle looks at me for a long time. “Poor Chrissy,” she says. “You must be so stressed.”

 

She steps toward me, until we’re standing less than a foot away from each other. “Is there anything I can do to help you relax?”

 

“Danielle,” I say, but before I can say anything else her mouth is against mine—our lips are sucking and pulling on each other’s, our tongues twisting and seeking each other, our breath becoming one long, shared sigh. Without pausing, I yank my blazer off and let it drop to the floor. I feverishly unbutton the top button of my dress shirt, then the second button, the third button, but before I reach the fourth, Danielle seizes my shirt in her hands and pulls it up over my head and tosses it. Danielle raises her arms up to the ceiling, so I can pull off her dress, which I then toss onto the floor. Her body is so slender, and her breasts are exactly how I’d remembered them: small, with dark nipples, like Hershey’s kisses.

 

Danielle reaches around my back to undo my bra, but it’s a 400-dollar La Perla, famously known for providing a lifetime of support and elegance, as well as being a bitch to unfasten, and Danielle is fumbling around back there like a teenage boy. I’m so fucking excited I can’t wait any longer, so I just grab the front and tear the fucker off, breaking all its fancy clasps and clips, and toss it onto the heap with everything else. Danielle takes my breasts in her hands and gives them a light squeeze, as though appreciating their ripeness, then bends forward and guides my breasts in her mouth, one at a time, lightly playing her tongue against my nipples.

 

I almost lose my balance as a long moan escapes me. “Should we, um,” I say. “Should we move to the bedroom?”

 

Danielle stands up and smiles. “Your call,” she says. “You’re the boss.”

 

I take her wrist and lead her to my room. Once inside, I throw her onto my bed and fall on top of her, kissing her lips, her neck, her ears. I feel her heart beating against my chest. I feel her fingernails dig into my back, her breath sighing into my ear.

 

“Oh Chrissy,” she moans. “Chrissy, I’ve missed you.”

 

Her hand slips inside the back of my panties. I lift my ass and let her tug my panties down, then I sit up and slide hers down her legs. I fall back on top of her and shove my tongue in her mouth. I feel her hand reach for my pussy, and when she slides her finger inside, I feel like a dam about to burst or a levee about to breach.

 

“Dani,” I say. “Oh Dani, I’ve missed you too.”

 

I shift down a little and place Danielle’s breasts in my mouth and suck on her nipples. I wonder if she still likes her nipples bitten. I take one between my teeth and give an exploratory bite.

 

“Yes…yes,” she says, by way of an answer. “That’s it, Chrissy.”

 

I bite her nipple harder, then move to the other. Danielle is twisting and writhing underneath me, and I know exactly what that means: I can’t keep her waiting any longer.

 

I shift further down, kissing her stomach, then her navel. Her legs open like butterfly wings. I lick the inside of her thighs and taste her sweat. I pause for a second to gaze at Danielle’s pussy, and I’m happy to see she still lets her hair grow naturally. I open my mouth and dive in.

 

“Oh, Chrissy,” she moans. “Oh, how I’ve missed you.”

 

I move my tongue in slow circles, and then I press my lips firmly against her clit and suck. I hear her let out a deep moan. I look up and see Danielle pinching her nipples between her fingers.

 

I go back for more, licking her pussy up and down, up and down, greedily lapping up her wetness. One of Danielle’s legs begins to shake. I go back to sucking on her clit, and when I look up again Danielle’s eyes have rolled back, and her tongue is darting in and out of her mouth.

 

“Ha la la la la,” she’s saying. “Ohhh ha ma ma la la la la…”

 

This had been one of Danielle’s oddball things, but it was honestly one of the things I’d always loved about her. She went into another place when she was orgasming, a place beyond words and comprehension. She’d lose herself completely. I’d always teased her about it, but now, after learning she’s become a priest, I guess it makes sense? Or maybe not. Admittedly, I don’t know much about Episcopalians, but I don’t think they speak in tongues much. But I suppose once you’ve got your best friend’s face buried deep in your pussy, anything goes.

 

Danielle’s leg is bouncing more wildly now, and a stream of unintelligible sounds flow from her mouth as I suck harder and harder on her clit. Soon she lets out a shout and a shudder and I can feel her cum dripping down my chin. I lift my face and smile up at her.

 

“I missed your taste,” I say.

 

“I missed your mouth,” she says.

 

I pull myself up and kiss her on her lips, then she deftly flips me around onto my back. She flicks her tongue against my nipples. She brushes her hand against my pussy, feels how wet I am, and slides one, then two, fingers inside. She sucks on my nipples while fingering me, and when I grab her head and run my fingers through her hair I catch a scent of tangerine.

 

Danielle moves down between my legs. She kisses my thighs up and down, on every inch surrounding my wet and aching pussy.

 

“You’re driving me crazy, Dani,” I say.

 

“Good, Chrissy,” she says. “I want to drive you fucking crazy.”

 

I can’t help myself from laughing. “Wow, Dani. I didn’t know ministers could have such filthy mouths!”

 

“Well then,” she says, “let me show you just how filthy my mouth can be.”

 

She takes my pussy in her mouth and I let out a long, long moan. She works her tongue all over me, eating me the way I’d always loved her to, and then she does something completely new: I feel the tip of her tongue play against my asshole, which makes my body tremble all over.

 

“Oh!” I say.

 

“Do you like that, Chrissy?”

 

“I do. I like it a lot.”

 

Danielle slips two fingers inside me and fucks me with her fingers while continuing to tease my asshole with her tongue.

 

“Oh fuck,” I say. “Don’t stop, Dani. Fuck, don’t stop.”

 

“You’re so fucking naughty,” Danielle says.

 

I feel my cum dripping down to my ass. Danielle licks it up slowly, pushing her tongue deeper between my ass cheeks, and then she lifts her head and dives on my clit and begins to suck.

 

“Oh fuck,” I say. “Oh god, oh god, oh god.”

 

The dam finally bursts and I cum so long and hard that I’m worried I’m going to drown Danielle, but she continues sucking on me, and almost immediately I orgasm again.

 

“Oh god!” I shout. Oh my god!”

 

Finally Danielle climbs back up, kisses me on my lips, and smiles. She burrows into my arms, rests her head on my chest, and smiles.

 

“I knew it,” she says.

 

“Knew what?” I ask.

 

“I knew I could make you call out to God,” she says.