Derwisch left in the morning, just as the sun came up. It was a peculiar farewell, soft and silent. If Rose has any doubts as to whether their relationship would continue, they end as the door clicks closed. She begins to cry big, salty crocodile tears for a dream that isn't a worth pursing. She cries because she supposes a man like Derwisch will have no trouble finding another woman, to replace her.
What follows is a day spent wandering aimlessly in an unfamiliar city. Eventually, Rose stops at a pub. She orders a gin and tonic and a bowl of cashews. Rose eats cashews delicately, one by one. She pulls Roman's white business card from her pink handbag. What would it mean to contact him? What could she tell him?
Sipping on her second gin, Rose is aware someone watches. There is a man in an old-fashioned booth by the window. His mouth is strong and full. On the table, an iPhone lies forgotten, adjacent to his beer. A dark tan hides inked artwork that snakes around his bicep. Close-cropped, short dark hair frames his face.
The man smiles, an open, genuine action that splinters the severity of his otherwise handsome face. Rose finds herself returning the gesture. She shrinks from grinning too broadly and turns away to sip her drink. The barman raises an eyebrow. Rose concentrates on pressing and trapping salt crystals at the bottom of her plastic cashew bowl. She licks them from her digit one by one, savouring the contrast. She traces the ink on Roman's stiff business card. Perhaps if she called him it would pass the time?
The stranger from the window brushes her wrist with his fingertips. Rose jumps, her thoughts stolen away.
Rose forgets about the business card. His brown eyes sweep her face. Rose swallows, aware her throat is suddenly dry.
“Can I buy you a drink?”
His accent is local. He's built like a tree house, all muscle and tanned flesh. Rose quivers.
“Gin and tonic please.”
He clips his vowels and swallows them with a comic-seductive, New Zealand twang.
“What's your name?”
A big upturned palm extends towards her.
Rose slots his hand into hers briefly, takes a long sip of her slightly bitter beverage.
“That's kind of cool.”
“You're one of the most beautiful women I have ever seen in my life.”
“Thank you.” She manages, cheeks aflame.
Rose puts her drink down.
“You're not so bad yourself.” Seconds pass. She claims her fresh glass.
“Do you drink here regularly?”
“I have a studio around the corner. You're welcome to come and have a see?”
Rose glances at her acquaintance, noting with surprise that his hazel eyes burn with curiosity.
“We could get some take aways and I could take you to the warehouse I share. It's alright, there will be other artists.”
Rose's smile dissolves. Her lips purse around the straw. She takes a quick sip. Levi laughs. It rumbles between them like an invitation.
“Ah. C'mon, y'only live once. Eh?”
It takes very little convincing to pry her from the bar stool. They stop off at the bottle shop and soon after, Levi calls their expedition to a halt outside a derelict building. Rose looks at her escort critically.
“I've had a bitch of a weekend. If you try to screw with me or if you're not what you seem, I will scratch and bite, you know. I warn you.”
Levi looks down at his petite companion. Her blue eyes flash fire and he doesn't doubt her threats. Spurred on by the pounding of his heart and the fading afternoon sunlight, Levi leans down and kisses her; brief, hot, reassuring.
“I wouldn't dream of it, Lady. You are a fire sprite. I get it. I just want to show you some art.”
Rose's hand flies to up to touch her mouth, left branded by his kiss. He turns away to open the old, steel door.
“You're very brave.” She says it softly, following him into the gloom.
“No Rose. I am just honest.”
He leads them through the concrete and rubble, up a flight of stairs to an open, light-filled space.
“Do you work here?”
“I do. And before you say anything, I've had a few exhibitions and sold my stuff. I don't merely look at my navel and wonder why the world isn't flat.”
Thrown from her comfort zone, Rose sees the potential in the fading afternoon.
“I've got a few finished works here and the rest is stored. Do you want to see?”
A man dressed entirely in black walks past them. His pointy black shoes click on the concrete as he goes. Levi takes Rose's hand. His stuff is tucked away in a back corner.
“My studio” Levi gestures.
His canvases are stacked, facing the wall so the wooden frames are visible. There is a bookshelf to Rose's right, against the wall, jammed full of newsprint, magazines and books. Archive boxes and paper holders are amongst the debris. To Rose, the air is luxuriant, thick with the tang of oils and turpentine. Briefly she thinks of the crisp, white card she must have left on the bar.
Today feels like the wrong day to plead with an intoxicating stranger about returning to a pub she can barely recall, for a piece of tiny paper.
“You like it?”
“It's a lovely space.”
Rose glances sharply at him. He stands with his hands plunged deep into the pockets of his dark blue jeans, a singlet clings to every curve of his well-honed body.
A smile curls one quarter of Levi's lip. Little pieces of her confused heart start to melt.
“I think that I would love to see some of your stuff. You can get to know me afterwards.”
He looks at her.
“Eh?” She cajoles.
Levi' eyes watch her lips.
“I'll just look. If you want, I won't say anything.”
He straightens his shoulders. Smouldering hazel eyes take in the pretty contours of her jaw and luscious lips. Levi's eyes settle hungrily on her silk shirt, worn almost indecently unbuttoned. The air crackles. Tension froths like boiling oil in Rose's belly, flooding her senses with promise. She takes his hand, urging him into action.
Levi grins and the grown-up frisson dissipates. He flicks a switch and removes dust covers. Small, light boxes come to life. In them, tiny painted cut-outs create intricate shadows and miniature worlds. Their beauty makes Rose breathless. Levi grins. He turns from the delicate art and pulls Rose into his big arms.
“I'm glad you like them.” Softly, into her ear.
Rose closes her eyes. He smells of sandalwood, sea salt and paint. She doesn't say any more. The sensations swallow her up. His cheek brushes hers.
“Kiss me.” Rose whispers, alive with longing.
Levi kisses the corner of her mouth. Warmth from the touch of his lips sends a shiver through. Hazel eyes burn with lust.
“You don't muck about” (A kiwi twang to his words).
“No.” says Rose, resisting the urge to shake her head. “I don't.”
One large hand cups the back of her neck. His lips descend on hers. Rose shifts her hips as full-lipped kisses strum a relenting rhythm on her muddled senses. She sneaks the tip of her tongue into his unfamiliar mouth. The warehouse fades. Levi's long body is a wall of muscle, pressed to hers. This man is not Derwisch, he is a primal force. Levi runs an appreciative palm from Rose's hip to her breast. She trembles. Liquid heat pools in her pussy.
“You're gorgeous.” His eyes are dancing.
Rose clears her throat.
“You're ah... You're good at this.”
Levi chuckles, drops a kiss on her mouth.
“I can do better.” His voice is very, very low.
Levi rakes his palms up her thighs, rolling and bunching the un-giving fabric of her skirt. He caresses the flesh of her inner thigh, dragging hesitant fingers ever-so-softly towards her cunt. His eyes are veiled by thick, dark lashes but he sees her shaking.
“Do you like that?”
The words come out on a sigh. He kneads her flesh, greedy for a response. Her pussy swells under his touch. It's like golden syrup and holidays. Rose goes weak at the knees, she licks her lips and plies at his singlet, sliding her hands underneath the material, reaching for Levi's smooth, hard torso. He tickles her clitoris through the fabric of her knickers.
Possessively, Levi reclaims her lips until their kisses are messy with lust. He withdraws, Rose plants her bottom on a table and he drops to his knees. The heat of his tongue traces her slit through her knickers. Rose squirms.
“Take them off.”
Levi shakes his head. Hot breath drives her to distraction. Rose encourages his head further into her pussy, pushing him with her hands.
It feels like an hour before he drags the material aside, one broad finger tracing a path to her slit.
“Please” She begs.
Levi pushes her legs wide and presses one finger into her softness, then two. Rose unbuttons her blouse with shaking fingers, trying to push him away.
“Undress me.” Rose wriggles off the bench and stands.
“No. Touch my cock.”
Rose extends her palm and moulds her slender, pale hand to the outline of his substantial cock through his jeans. 'I want you' he says with his eyes. Rose undresses herself. Levi follows. He kicks off his shoes and pulls his singlet over his head. Rose stands naked, save for her boots; winning.
“I'll do that.” She offers.
Rose steps over her clothes and Levi drops his hands to his sides. His jeans are semi-buttoned. Rose's heart thumps in her chest. Raw need races between them. She plunges her hand down the front of his jeans, tracing his naked thickness with her delicate fingers, tickling him with her touch. His eyes watch her lips, fixated on sensation. Rose bites her bottom lip, listening appreciatively to Levi's ragged intake of breath. His cock thickens. His hands roam, thumbing her nipples. She gasps.
“Do you think we should fuck?”
“More than life.” His voice cracks as he speaks.
He ducks his head and takes her nipple for a moist joyride.
Rose fumbles and exposes his hard cock. Her own hand disappears into her sweetness. She throbs, needing to be filled.
Levi looks like a mythical Maori; half man - half god; darkly handsome against the chaos of his studio. Thick, muscular arms reach for her. She moves, fingers still buried deep. Rose leans over onto the table top, facing away from him. Levi doesn't hesitate. He lowers his aching pole to the entrance of her pussy.
“Oh please?” says Rose.
"Say you want me."
"I want to feel you"
Levi slides home with relief. He grunts, buried deep on his first stroke.
“Oh” says Rose loudly, losing her grip.“Fuck Me” she says carelessly, tossing her pretty head.
Levi grips her hips. She is warm and pliable. He slams into her; extends his arms and they slide apart.
“Fuck me.” Rose mutters. “Hard.”
Levi sets a steady rhythm. Rose wriggles and sighs, on tip toes, rolling her hips to add to the pleasure. Coated with her pussy juice, Levi's cock makes slick, soppy noises as he enters and retreats. Sweat glows on Rose's back.
“Ah” she says happily, singing in time to his thrusts.
She spreads her legs wider, wanting more of him, taking his rod like a gift.
Gently, he slows his pace.
“Turn around so I can see you?”
Levi lifts and plants her arse on the table once again. She wriggles and her hips shift from side to side, enjoying the feel of him, smooth, taut and pressing on her pussy. Levi, belatedly, remembers her clit.
Rose wraps her hand around his shaft to guide him. Levi uses his thumb and rubs lightly on her clit. Her muscles tense under his exquisite touch, contracting just as he penetrates. It's deliciously slow and insanely tight. Levi closes his eyes. He traces irregular circles on her nub. Rose squirms. She cums, succinctly, compounding the waves of pleasure gripping his pole.
“Fuck!” Rose bites out, heaving herself into ecstasy.
Levi's face is close, his breath warms her face. He buries himself to his balls and then withdraws almost all the way. As he strokes, Levi shudders and swells. Rose has honey in her veins. She accepts the thudding weight of him, gripping his back with her hands.
It's about the ride, the sloshing feeling of flesh on flesh; tension in his rigid body mounts, Levi grunts, watching Rose. He cups her breast and her skin tingles.
Rose cums. A second orgasm leaves her legs rubbery. She shudders and bites his shoulder. It's the final straw. With a grunt and a rush of warmth he splits into fragments, pushing cum into her hot, tight pussy.
Moments stand still, they stack upon one another. He leans into her, exhausted.
Rose wipes hair from her eyes. She touches his tanned face, admiring her new lover. Levi plants a kiss on her swollen lips and traces their shape with his thumb.
Rose agrees with relief, her light fingers caress his chest.
“Thank you.” She whispers, propped up by his warm body.
His grin is slow and tired.
“I need just a minute or two.”