Tall and terribly good-looking, Jud Carlsen grabbed Danni’s wrist as the green-eyed beauty, just short of a model’s height, came near him in the hallway of his two-storey penthouse on the subzero evening of February 14. He pulled her through the door of his first-floor bedroom. Near the French doors that led to the balcony and gave a view of the moon and stars, he took her into his muscular arms and kissed her. He said, “I can’t wait till we’re alone for the night.” He laid a hand on her breast and felt the nipple harden.
Danni felt the warmth of his hand through the thin silk of her dress. She ran her fingers through his muddy brown hair as she kissed his full, well-cut lips and then said, “There are still hours to go, Darling.” She turned to look at the high heap of winter coats on the bed and grinned as she said, “We can’t just send everyone home.”
“Thanks for giving me this party, Danni, but you’re all I want for my birthday.” Jud kissed her again and felt the heat of passion on her mouth. With a whisper of his deep, warm voice, he said, “I guess we’d better go back now. If another moment passes, I won’t be in decent condition for society.”
Danni put a hand on the nape of Jud’s neck and pulled Jud closer as she leaned up to kiss him. As she looked into his charcoal gray eyes, she said, “The evening will pass quickly.” She released him and stepped back as she looked at his broad shoulders stretching at the black fitted shirt, its collar open at his throat. Her stare traveled down his length and then rested on the muscled thighs shaping the slim black trousers. She wanted to touch him intimately but refrained from doing so. Hoping that the pleasurable erotic sensations of her body did not reflect in her facial expression, she felt lucky that as a woman, she had nothing more than that to hide when aroused. She moved toward the door and exited into the small corridor leading to the living room.
As Jud followed Danni, his eyes settled on her sexy figure, sheathed in gold, the color of her hair. Once in the living room, under the ambient crystal downlights, recessed in the ceiling like stars in the sky, he watched her pause as she surveyed the guests whose needs and whims she had catered to since their arrival an hour ago. Their voices mingled with classic rock music. Jud moved close behind Danni and put his arms around her shoulders. With his lips near her hair, he breathed in her exotic fragrance of woods and wildflowers on a rainy day as it mingled with the air currents, circulated by a cooling system and permeated by the aroma of roses and pinewood emanating from the urns flanking the flaming fireplace.
Danni put her hands on Jud’s forearms and smiled. She noticed his pre-teen daughter snipping a few of the ribbons that confined bunches of heart-shaped helium balloons in reds and pinks to corners of the room by linking them to weights on the floor. As the newly freed foil symbols of love begin to drift about the room, she caught Diana’s eye. And Diana’s grin.
As some of the thirty-plus guests began to stare at them, Jud released Danni. As she turned around to face him, he said, “I’ll return to mingling-after taking a break.”
Danni smiled at Jud. She glanced at her watch and said, “Dinner will be served in half an hour.”
“I won’t be long, Darling.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
After leaving Danni’s side, Jud swiftly walked through the clusters of guests before they could catch his attention for more than a smile; with their eyes on his back, he passed from the living room into his private museum, its walls supporting paintings and photographs that he had collected during the last ten years. All had been done by unrecognized living artists until three of them, including a photographer who was also a friend, had become famous.
Jud thought about the upcoming Alin Dobre exhibit at the Glasheim Museum and the Dobre painting-or Dobro, as it was signed-that he could not display because no one was supposed to know of its existence. He had recently learned that Alin was ill. And he wondered if the time were nigh to take the Dobro painting to Hungary and thus fulfill his promise to Alin-made as a boy unaware of the penal ramifications that could accompany such a deed. After all, smuggling priceless art was a crime.
At the sound of a knock, Jud said, “Come in.”
Holding a gift-wrapped package, Danni’s mother, Dr. Susan Thames, entered and said, “I have something for you.” As she handed her potential son-in-law the gift, she looked his brawny yet slender physique up and down. He was too sexy for his own good.
Jud said, “Thanks, Susan.” As he tore at the wrapping, he felt her eyes on his face. He dropped the wrapping to the floor and stared at the title of her newest book, Monogamy in the Free World: Its Past Disintegration and Current Re-birth Due to the Expansion of Christianity.
As Jud raised his glance, Susan looked into his eyes, shadowed by too many black lashes. She tried to read them but couldn’t. With underlying anger regarding his lack of faithfulness to her daughter, she said, “I know you won’t peruse this book but you were my motivation for writing it.”
Jud pressed his lips together and wryly said, “Thanks. That’s a distinction I had never hoped to have. Are you publicizing it that way?”
“Of course not, Jud. I want the attention on my book-not on you.”
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Jud’s birthday party had ended. The guests had gone home and the encroaching minutes were whittling away the third hour of the morning. Danni carried the last party tray into the kitchen, suffused with amber light from suspended crystal geo-matrix lights. She placed it next to the sink. The caterers had cleaned up after the dinner but post-dinner snacks had yielded another array of dirty dishware.
Danni opened up the industrial dishwasher and began to empty out the clean glassware. She knew Jud would come looking for her. Yet, as she straightened up, she was surprised when she felt his arms go around her shoulders and his hands lightly touch her breasts. She guessed from his silent approach that he was barefoot. She put her hands on his forearms and felt his bare chest against her back-exposed by a deep vee down to her waistline. She turned around and slid off his unbuttoned shirt. She put her hands on his lean, firm waist and then ran a hand down the front of his trousers. He was as ready for lovemaking as she had been all evening.
Without a thought of the birthday present she had hidden away from him in a dark secret place, she wound her arms around his neck. That he was heading for trouble again and that her gift might save him remained in the recesses of her mind as the erotic sensations spiraling through her body drew her full attention.
Jud swept Danni up into his arms and carried her the distance to his bedroom. She kissed him as they reached the threshold. He stepped over. Steel and crystal wall sconces cast ambient light onto a bed that was now clear of the guests’ winter coats. The light played on the vases of roses and heart-shaped boxes of chocolates that had arrived throughout the day and filled all furniture surfaces. When Jud let Danni down, she stood in his arms; she tilted her face and let him ravish her lips. By the smoothness of his face, she knew he had just shaved.
Jud whispered, “You taste sweet, my beautiful woman.” He pulled down the straps of Danni’s dress and lowered the bodice down to her waist; he cupped her round, full breasts in his hands. Then, he leaned down to kiss them as he moved his hands down her torso and rested them on her hips. As Danni pulled his hair and wound her fingers in it, she shoved her body against his and then arched back as he kissed her throat. Jud held her dress and slid it down her hips. As Danni stepped out of her dress, she felt his hands and the tightness of her lacy undergarments against her erogenous zones.
Jud lifted Danni over his shoulder and then laid her on the bed, pinning her body with his and pressing hot kisses on her lips. She returned every kiss and then pushed at his hips with her hands. He got onto his hands and knees, leaning over her. She undid his belt, slid it off, and tossed it to the floor. With care, she unbuttoned and unzipped his trousers. He pulled them down and kicked them off. He leaned on his elbows above her, his body pressed against hers. She felt his fingers like silk move along her thighs. He and she exchanged French kisses, smooth, hot, and deep. He played with her tight skimpy bra and panties. Then, he slid them off her.
With their arms wrapped around each other, the lovers rolled over. Danni lay on top of Jud. He let her hold his wrists against the pillow. Face to face, they kissed again and then she felt his hard thrust. He pulled her warm firm body against his hot lean one. She embraced him. She and he began to ravish each other.
For ‘Top Ten Valentine Roses’, click here; for ‘How Many Roses to Give’, click here.
All Rights Reserved 2008 by RM. No part of this book excerpt may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping, or by any information storage retrieval system without the written consent of the author.