“Oh, that’s nice. Neal is home for summer break,” Mom says to me one day over breakfast as she’s scrolling through her Facebook feed. At the blank look I give her over my Special K she continues, “Tom and Kay’s son? You used to tutor him when you were high school.”
“Neal Barrister!” I say, the dots finally connecting as a hazy memory of a sweet, shy, chubby boy with acne and braces materializes in my head. “I remember now. He’s going to… USC right?”
“UCLA,” Mom corrects me. “He’s graduating next year and wants to go to law school.” She’s always disturbingly up-to-date with all the details of her friends’ kids’ lives.
“Wow, good for him,” I say with a warm smile, for some reason feeling proud of a kid I haven’t seen in six years. The last time I saw him he was fifteen and struggling with trigonometry and I was just about to leave for college.
I get up and rinse my bowl at the sink. “I’m going to Starbucks,” I say and give Mom a peck on the cheek as I grab my laptop bag. “I’ll see you later.”
“Mhm,” she hums distractedly and keeps liking posts on her feed.
Hot Starbucks Guy is sitting at his usual table when I walk in, a laptop and couple of books open in front of him. I first noticed him three days ago and every day since then, sitting at the same table. I very carefully don’t stare as I line up to order my usual iced dirty chai latte and only allow myself to glance casually in his general direction as I’m waiting for my receipt.
The way his shoulders fill out the plain navy blue henley he’s wearing should be illegal.
The place is unusually packed this morning—probably because it’s a Saturday—and I’m just about to give up on finding a seat and head for the city library when Hot Starbucks Guy catches my eye, smiles at me, then deliberately starts clearing some space at his table. I blink at him and quickly look over my shoulder to make sure he’s not making room for the Victoria’s Secret model that must be lurking just behind me—but nope, it really does seem like he’s inviting me to share his table.
Uh. Okay, then.
He looks distinctly amused when I hesitantly sit down on the chair opposite him, and I know I’m blushing as I say, “Thanks.”
“No problem,” he says, his voice a pleasing tenor, smiling in a way that crinkles the corners of his brown eyes. He kind of reminds me a little of Chris Evans back when he was the Human Torch instead of Captain America. Only with glasses and a better haircut.
I busy myself with pulling out my own laptop and opening it up to continue working on my thesis proposal. I’m trying to get a head start on it by doing some of my research over the summer.
“I’m grabbing another coffee, do you want anything?”
“Hm?” I look up to find HSG looking at me expectantly. I glance at my chai latte and just now notice that I’d already drank it all and the ice cubes have started to melt in the bottom of the plastic cup. I look at my phone: it’s been almost an hour since I sat down. “You don’t have to,” I say.
He only quirks a smile at me—and yeah, that’s definitely an “I am flirting with you” smile—and says, “I’d like to buy you a drink, if that’s okay.”
I blink at him. Wow, I don’t think a guy has ever come on to me this smoothly in my life.
“Oh, uh, um,” I stutter, because I am definitely not smooth and my brain is currently running around in circles like an overexcited chihuahua that a guy this hot is actually hitting on me. “That’s okay!” His face falls, and I hurry to clarify: “I mean, it’s okay for you to buy me a drink. That’s really, uh, nice. I’d like that. I was just, you know, surprised, because I can’t remember the last time a guy—So! Um, another iced chai latte. Dirty—I mean, with one shot of espresso.”
I am a human disaster.
Thankfully it seems that he doesn’t consider awkward, incoherent babbling an enormous turn off and that smile of his comes back wider and brighter. “Great, be right back.”
I stare at his—very nice—ass as he walks to the counter then I turn back to my laptop screen and mouth oh my god. I try to firmly tell myself to chill, relax, be cool, but as is the usual for me my level of nervousness is directly proportional to how attractive I think the guy I’m talking to is.
I am very nervous right now.
“What are you working on?” HSG asks when he comes back to wait for his order.
“My thesis proposal,” I answer. “What about you?”
He closes one of his open books and I see the words ‘LSAT Preptests’ on it. “Studying for the LSAT.”
“Cool,” I say, thankful now that I’m a little more coherent. “Where are you planning to go for law school?”
“The best place that will give me the most scholarship money,” he says with a self-deprecating laugh.
I smile, understanding the sentiment completely. “I hear you. I don’t even want to think about how much I’ll owe by the time I get my Master’s degree.” He asks about my degree and thesis and for the next few minutes the conversation is easy and comfortable as we talk about school and commiserate about how freaking expensive textbooks are.
I really have to find the right moment to ask for his name—somehow I didn’t want to break the conversation by bringing up the awkward fact that we actually have’t introduced ourselves yet—but then I realize I could just wait when the barista calls out, “Daniel!” and HSG doesn’t get up.
“I was planning to get some lunch,” he says, his eyes flicking to mine a bit uncertainly. “Would you…?”
“Sounds great,” I say with a grin, honest to god butterflies fluttering inside my stomach. “But lunch is on me, since you’re getting me coffee.”
He huffs out a breath with a smile. “Okay, but I pay for dessert. Deal?”
I laugh. “Deal.”
And then the harried barista yells, “Order for Neal! Venti dark roast and chai latte—” and tumbler locks are going click click click in my head as of course HSG gets up—
“Law school!” I yelp, and he looks back at me with a blank expression. “You’re Neal Barrister! Oh my god, I used to tutor you in Math!”
“So, tell me the truth: did you decide on becoming a lawyer because of your name?”
Neal grins and picks up another nacho chip loaded with melted cheese and jalapeños. “I always thought it was a waste that both my parents are accountants with a name like Barrister.”
The hole-in-the-wall place we ended up in is practically a legend in our small town: the most authentic Mexican food you’ll find in a hundred miles. Everything is exactly as I remember it eight years ago, from the great food to the worn out tile floors to the dent in the wall that Owen Tooley put in with his head when he was drunk out of his mind senior year of high school.
“Isn’t there a term for that? When you choose a career that fits your name—”
“Nominative determinism.” He shrugs. “I guess it’s a good thing I wasn’t born with a name like… Neal Beaver.” He quirks an eyebrow at me, and somehow I know exactly where he’s going with this.
“You’d be the most popular gynecologist in town.”
He laughs and I grin. Then he says, “I had the biggest crush on you, you know, six years ago.”
“I… kind of thought you did,” I admit. A memory floats up, of looking up from explaining a formula to find brown eyes quickly darting away from my face. At the time I thought it was cute and sweet, and didn’t have the heart to embarrass him by acknowledging it.
I had found it flattering, to be honest.
“I thought you were the perfect girl: smart and kind and beautiful,” he says.
Now I’m the one averting my eyes out of embarrassment. “I’m not perfect.”
“But you are smart and kind and beautiful,” he says, and even sitting at a dingy formica table under bad fluorescent lighting and listening to J Balvin through cheap iHome speakers doesn’t lessen the effect of that line with that face.
Seriously, who knew Neal freaking Barrister would grow up so fine?
I blow out a breath. “I can’t decide if you’re for real or a massive player.”
Neal smiles, slow and sexy. “Want to find out?”
“This,” I say very firmly while at the same time pretty much climbing Neal like a goddamn tree, hands scrabbling at the warm and delightfully muscled span of his back, “is probably not a good idea.”
He hums, lips against my neck, and the vibrations send shivers down my spine. He has me pinned against the inside of his bedroom door—parents conveniently away on a Mediterranean cruise—and my skin catches a little on the Fight Club poster on it.
“Yeah,” he agrees. “But this is also my greatest fantasy come to life, so,” and he breaks off to lift me off the floor completely, kissing me deep and messy. I whimper against his mouth—sometime in the last six years someone clearly taught the guy how to kiss, wow—and wrap my arms and legs around him as he brings me to his bed.
Greatest fantasy come to life. God, it’s hot how much he wants me. Me, who’s nobody special. My back hits the bed and then he’s on me, slotting his hips between mine, grinding his hard on against me, that delicious pressure making my clit throb and my pussy ache.
And yes, of course this isn’t going to last, isn’t going to become anything real: either he is a massive player or he’ll figure out that I’m not the “perfect” girl he made up and fantasized about ages ago. Meanwhile in a month I’ll be flying out of this town back to the real world—to my real life. Grad school and a career and beyond, another six years or more before I would see this place again, and Neal maybe never except in occasional social media posts or second hand gossip from my mother. This is just—a holiday, a fling, a summer vacation, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.
“Fuck me already,” I gasp.
“God, yeah,” Neal says, and produces a condom packet while I try to shimmy out of my pants and panties and at the same time strip his pants off. Christ, even his dick is gorgeous. Long and thick—but not too thick—and just by looking at it I know it’s going to fit so well inside me.
“I’m going to have to get my mouth on your dick sometime,” I say as I close my hand around him, rubbing the pad of my thumb under the head. Neal sucks in a breath and his dick twitches a little as his ab muscles flex. “But not right now—mmm.” I close my eyes and bite my lip as Neal kisses my collarbone and fingers my pussy gently, delicately rubbing the oh so sensitive nerve endings around my clit: a delicious tease.
He takes his hand away after I start to grind into it and palms my breast, my nipple peaking immediately—his hand is very wet. “Right now, you want to be fucked.”
“Yes, so why isn’t that happening yet?” I try for ‘bossy’ and ‘demanding’ but miss it by a mile, my voice going high and breathy, begging.
Neal puts his head on my shoulder and laughs.
When he finally puts it in me, I’m straddling his lap and he muffles my gasps with his mouth as I slowly lower myself onto him. We both take a good long moment when he’s all the way inside, and I savor the sensation of feeling filled up with something other than silicone. It’s been almost six months since I last had sex.
Our position means I have control and I start slow and shallow. Sweat beads on his forehead and his arms shake, just a little—from the effort of keeping himself in check, I imagine. I pick up the pace once I get used to him, and then we’re off. I fuck myself on his lap, bouncing and enjoying the stretch, the feeling of fullness and of his hands on my breasts before he wraps one strong arm around my waist and pushes me down on the bed, all the while staying snug and tight inside me. We both groan at the change in angle and suddenly he has my ankles above my head and is fucking me, nailing me within an inch of my life.
I twist his sheets in my fists, moaning ecstatically because damn this feels good, and hang on for the ride.
His mouth finds mine and the sensual slide of his tongue is a delicious counterpoint to the staccato rhythm he’s set. I can feel that familiar pressure building deep in my belly and run my nails down his back. He grunts—oh good, he likes that—and his next stroke in is just a little more, enough to make me gasp. “Almost?” He asks.
“Almost,” I confirm.
“Okay, let’s get you there, gorgeous,” he says, and then he tilts his hips, changing the angle just enough to make sparks dance up and down my spine. It’s like the man is reading my mind or something. He reaches between us, runs his thumb directly across my clit—and that’s it, that does it: I whine high in my throat as the orgasm crashes through me, waves of release making my legs quiver uncontrollably as I clench around Neal once, twice—
“Fuck,” he grits out, gripping my ass tight as his next stroke in stutters and holds.
I pull him in for a kiss, as dirty as I can make it, as we come down. “That was really fun,” I say, sweaty and grinning.
He laughs. “So, how long are you in town for?”
Oh yes, this is going to be the best summer vacation ever.