Bacon Pancakes Ch. 01

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She was a sweet little thing. Nature had dealt her an enviable hand—and feet, legs, and body to match. She possessed a woman’s curves, but a stature that puberty had somehow forgotten to augment. It was as though the hormones responsible for her growth spurt had simply decided to accentuate her curves instead. Consequently she was an object of desire to many, yet woefully under-equipped to ward off such desire.

He was a fearsome thing. Scarcely a man, yet he commanded the body of a warrior. Tall with thick skin marred by countless souvenirs of brash misadventures. Dark, inscrutable eyes deep enough to drown a wandering gaze. Unkempt tawny hair that reflected his wild side, the wolf within. He exuded a primal energy unbound by societal norms, in many respects a hunter of eclectic prey: outcasts, misfits, and mavericks of the world.

They met at the gym, of all places. He was on his back, his rough and sweaty hands tightly gripped on a barbell that was over-loaded with weights. But his wiry muscles could leverage more weight than appearances would suggest, and it was while putting them to use that her voice floated over to him.

“You’re awfully optimistic.”

He scowled as he focused on the bar. Taking a deep breath, he heaved the barbell off the rack and began lifting it up. One.

“Realistic, I’d say.” Two.

“Why use weights you can barely lift a few times? You’re not impressing anyone.”

“I’ll impress you if you insist on hanging around to criticise.” Four.

She grinned and leaned against the doorway, waiting for his bravado to fall flat. “We’ll see.”

“I’d like to see a little lady such as yourself do better.” Six.

She pretended to take offence, teasing him. “Careful, someone might think you’re a little sexist.”

“We’re all sexist. I’m just more honest.”

“That’s pretty bold. How am I sexist then?”

“You believe girls have the greater right to gawk at guys exercising.” Twelve.

“I-” she blushed, glad he couldn’t see her face. “How would you know?”

“Call it a hunch.”

Well, he was right. Emma had been on her way out when she spotted him exercising alone, shirtless and shining with sweat. He was hardly a specimen, but his quiet confidence had captivated her.

“What, no other scathing words of criticism?” Twenty.

“Oh, you haven’t heard scathing yet.”

Finishing his twenty-first bench press, he scowled and hung up the barbell. He looked across at her and immediately his scowl turned into a grin as he realised she’d been teasing him the whole time. Now he couldn’t help grinning as he saw his critic in the flesh. Emma smiled back. She seemed to have that effect on people.

“A fine twenty-one bench presses,” she remarked, curtsying in jest.

Oh, so as soon as my hands are free it’s all smiles and praise, he thought amusedly.

“Well, don’t you want to know the name of your fair judge?”

She really was rather fair. Her complexion was smooth and pale, presently illuminated by the playful smile she wore. A few strands of dark red hair swayed in front of her eyes, the rest held back in a neat ponytail.

“Ah, sure. What’s your name?”

“Emma,” she supplied, tilting her head as she waited for him to reciprocate.

“Hunter,” he said, extending his hand.

She stared at him for a moment. Then she laughed and turned to leave. Hunter stood there dumbly, then hastily retracted his hand and ran to catch up.

“Hey, that is my name, you know.”

She looked at him and raised an eyebrow. “Alright, Hunter,” she said, making little air quotes. She took the hand he’d proffered earlier and pulled him closer, her other hand going to his pocket. She pulled out his phone and deftly tapped her details into the contacts, then tucked it back into his pocket before he could say a word. “Just don’t expect me to be your next prey.”

And with that, she was gone, striding out into the sunlight.

***

The next day, Emma answered her phone and smiled when she heard Hunter’s distinctive tone.

“You. Me. Lunch. Keen?”

“Put another few words in there and I might be tempted.”

“Would you deign to accompany I, the great master of bench presses, to a mutually-agreeable locale for the consumption of a noonday meal?”

She giggled. “Certainly.”

“My meaning was clear without the extra fluff, wasn’t it?”

“I know. I just like to hear your voice.”

There was a moment of silence in which Emma imagined him silently punching the air in triumph.

“Botanic Gardens. Twelve. Oh- sorry. Do the Botanic Gardens sound like a good meeting place to you, at the entrance at say twelve o’clock?”

Emma glanced at her phone clock. Ten past eleven. It’d take her ten minutes to walk to the gardens, leaving just forty minutes to have a shower and dress up.

“That doesn’t leave me much time.”

“You’re a sprightly girl. You’ll manage.”

She rolled her eyes. “Fine. I’ll see you there.”

Emma tossed casino siteleri her phone onto the sofa and smiled to herself. It hadn’t been long since her last roll in the hay, but that familiar tingle betwixt her legs was making a compelling appeal for another date. After a moment of steamy reflection, she jumped up, stretched, and headed for the shower.

***

Midday. The city was bustling under the clear blue sky. Endless crowds surged through the streets, piling into cafés, restaurants, and pubs to satisfy their hunger and escape the sweaty mass of bodies outside.

The Botanic Gardens were situated right in the middle of that bustle. But with forty acres of sheltered vegetation it would be a trivial matter to find a secluded spot free from prying eyes. Hunter leaned against a pillar by the main entrance, scanning the crowds for his cheeky redhead. He was, as always, prepared to be stood up—in his experience it was all too common for a girl’s enthusiasm in one conversation to dissipate before the next.

But then there she was. Hair gleaming in the sunlight, head turned to watch for traffic as she crossed the road towards him. She’d looked pretty at the gym yesterday; now, with the benefit of a shower, a change of clothes, and a practised hand at makeup, she looked exquisite. Her hair hung loosely by her shoulders, straight at the top and curled at the tips. Her stocky legs were encased in black nylons that disappeared into a pleated miniskirt. An electric blue button-down blouse loosely hugged her torso, the top few buttons left undone to allow a light breeze or wandering gaze to roam across her cleavage. A wide, shiny black belt girded the narrowest part of her waist, accentuating her petite figure. Calf-length boots made a soft click-clack as she strolled across the road and turned to notice him.

“I do love a girl with good fashion sense,” Hunter said appreciatively as she reached him. “That would be you, by the way,” he added, grinning.

Emma rolled her eyes. “You don’t need to spell things out that clearly. Hello to you too.”

They were walking into the gardens now, his arm around her shoulders. Normally Emma would have objected to such presumed intimacy so early on a date, but Hunter was sweet and there was currently a vacancy for a shoulder-warmer in her life. She was also grateful he wasn’t deterred by how embarrassingly sticky she was in the heat. Well, he was a full head taller than her after all: maybe he couldn’t smell her musk from all the way up there.

“It’s beautiful, isn’t it?” said Emma as they passed a bed of vibrant roses.

“Yes, she is,” Hunter murmured, brushing her hair gently off her cheek.

“So what do you like?” he continued, before she could reply.

“For lunch?”

“Nah, in general.”

Was he being too vague? Some girls hated vague. Hunter felt her shoulder shrug after a moment. He was about to refine the question when she abruptly spoke.

“Sex,” she said pointedly.

Definitely not too vague. A question was never too vague if “sex” was the answer.

He turned to look at her. She blushed. Hunter laughed. Clearly it had been a close call between that reply and losing her nerve.

“I didn’t realise we were already on booty call terms with each other,” he teased.

“No, I didn’t mean that,” she said hastily. Well, maybe… “But you asked what I like. Everybody likes sex, don’t they?”

“Are you asking me now? Sure, I like sex,” said Hunter, no trace of embarrassment in his voice. “But that’s about as meaningful as saying I like meat. It’s how you eat the meat that makes it interesting. You know, you could have marinated chicken drumsticks, or a salted sirloin steak. Or you could go a bit more out there and have bacon and maple syrup on pancakes.”

“Um…” hesitated Emma, unsure if she should question the odd choice of metaphor, while at the same time trying not to think of herself as meat.

“I’m more of a bacon pancakes guy myself,” added Hunter dreamily.

“That’s… definitely one of the stranger ways of saying your sexual tastes are out there.”

They stopped moving and she looked around, breathing in the rich earthy air. They stood by a lone bench surrounded on three sides by thick brush. A dead end. Emma was abruptly aware of the complete absence of artificial sounds: no footsteps, no car engines, no tyres squealing. They were alone.

“Does that bother you?” he asked seriously, looking her in the eye.

“No!” she blurted out, suddenly wondering if it should. He really was quite intense… And still more or less a stranger… Instinct and years of parental guidance were screaming at her that this was not a place she wanted to be. It would be just her luck if the name Hunter proved to be prophetic.

Then she realised his question was probably about sexual tastes, not their sudden isolation.

“Not at all,” she continued, fighting to retain her composure. Now she wondered: was her heart beating faster from anxiety, canlı casino or arousal?

“I’m quite fond of bacon pancakes myself.”

“Look at us, surrounded by pretty flowers talking about sex and pancakes. I’m a terrible romantic. And also suddenly hungry.”

Emma rolled her eyes. “Well, you did ask me out to lunch. So what do you feel like?”

For a moment Hunter was stumped, paralysed by the age-old dilemma of where to take your date out to eat. Then he grinned.

“There’s a pancake joint a few blocks from here.”

Emma smiled. “Pancakes for lunch? Really?”

“Hey, we’re responsible adults, and that means we can choose what to eat and when,” he argued, steering them in the direction of the pancake parlour. Emma was almost disappointed nothing else had happened on the secluded bench.

Recalling his earlier metaphor, she blushed as an innuendo crept into her mind.

“Or who to eat and when,” she muttered. Hunter chuckled and hugged her closer.

“I wonder if they serve bacon there…” he murmured.

***

The pancake parlour did not serve bacon pancakes.

They did, however, offer just about every other sweet syrupy topping imaginable to accompany their fluffy pancakes. Hunter enjoyed munching on his banana strawberry pancake almost as much as he enjoyed watching Emma savour hers. She ate in that dainty fashion typical of a woman trying to avoid any embarrassing spills. Consequently she had only half eaten her pancake when Hunter had cleaned the plate of his, so he sat there smiling and enjoying the show.

But at the same time his mind was spinning with excitement. She was sexy, sultry, sassy, and smart, he thought, ticking off his mental checklist as he went. A girl with two of those qualities was a good lay. Four made her exceptional: girlfriend material, even. He’d play this one slow, for with Emma he envisioned more than just a one-night stand.

“Good pancake?” he prompted as she neared the last mouthful.

“Great,” she mumbled, shooting him a smile that carefully hid her messy teeth.

Hunter smiled back, breathing deeply as he relaxed.

“You smell lovely.”

“You smell like maple syrup.”

“Exactly,” he grinned. “You really don’t have to eat so primly. It’s not like you can get much stickier in this humidity.”

Emma blushed, embarrassed at the sweat-soaked patches of cotton cleaving to her form even though Hunter was no better off.

“Hey, it’s alright. I happen to like it when a girl glows a little.”

She smiled coyly. “I prefer when a guy makes me glow a lot.”

“And it’s supposed to be guys who get horny around food…” Hunter rolled his eyes in jest, prompting another blush.

Emma finished eating and they got up to pay, Hunter never removing his eyes from his companion. They made it outside into the stuffy afternoon air, a journey made surprisingly difficult by their intent focus on undressing each other in their heads. At least, that was where Hunter’s focus lay. But while fantasy-Emma pranced around half-naked for Hunter’s lustful imagination, real Emma was experiencing a stab of guilt. She liked Hunter, maybe even more than she liked his hunky body, but she knew how this would end. A brief fling as passions ran hot, then a prolonged, stagnating liaison following his induction into her roster of potential boy toys. It was probably wrong of her to lead him on, knowing it wouldn’t last, but she couldn’t help the way butterflies fluttered through her stomach whenever he whispered something sexy under his breath.

Surrendering to her desire, Emma steered them left as she said, “My apartment is just a few blocks away.”

***

It may not have been traditional for a girl to take a guy back to her place during the first date, but Emma was far from traditional. Au contraire, Emma would make a traditionalist wince. Chastity was a virtue she’d long forgotten, or at least long neglected to the point of indifference. It would be easy to label her a nymphomaniac and write off her promiscuity as an inflated sex drive, but the truth was she simply lacked willpower and consequently gave into her lust as frequently as it surfaced.

And guys seemed to love that: a girl who “embraced her sexuality” as they put it. Of course, embracing her sexuality meant more sex for those supportive studs, and lately Emma had been embracing her sexuality with a lot of men.

Indeed, Emma’s apartment was less hers and more theirs with each passing day. Sports jackets peeked out from various corners around the room, and the couches had that messy, recently-slept-on look about them. At this point it looked more like a fraternity house than the apartment of a co-ed. She hurried to fling some boxers out of sight as she entered ahead of Hunter, hoping he wouldn’t pay too much attention to the mess from previous male guests.

“Had a party here recently?” he enquired, Emma’s guilt returning for another stab.

“Err… Yeah, it was game night.” Not kaçak casino entirely untrue: her last visitor had certainly played games with her, though not the card kind.

Hunter nodded absently and continued to look around. Emma stood awkwardly, uncomfortable in her own home, each passing second increasing her shame until she began to regret letting him in. She couldn’t blame him for her guilty conscience, of course. A conscience that normally she paid no heed, but those blasted feelings she was developing for him wanted to cling onto her precarious reputation as an upstanding woman. How would he look at her if he knew how many guys had seen her naked in the past week alone?

His gaze returned to her reddened face, those dark eyes impassive as ever. What Emma didn’t know was that those inscrutable eyes had already seen everything she’d hoped he’d overlook—and Hunter was quickly putting all the pieces together. The evidence of frequent male company, not for a recent game night, but on many separate occasions. Her embarrassment, a fair indication of the sort of guests they’d been. This would probably be enough to discourage Hunter from becoming too invested in the girl, except there was more: she was nervous. She wanted to make a good impression. She liked him, then. The feeling was mutual.

The picture was coming together now. Emma, with her unwitting magnetism of the male gaze, was accustomed to drawing attention that she had not the strength nor heart to turn away. He’d been with her not three hours and could already tell her temperament was as sweet as her countenance. But she must be too easygoing for her own good, for it appeared her circle of friends was exclusively male and she’d no doubt earned a reputation as an easy lay. Sex had become as casual an affair as a night at the movies, and she seemed mostly satisfied with it that way. After all, she had no shortage of willing partners: it was an easy source of pleasure. She was a popular girl—guys clearly loved her company. What wasn’t to like?

But Hunter could tell there was a part of her that was left unsatisfied. With sex now routine, what was there to excite her? Yet by some stroke of luck, that’s what he’d achieved with mere words. That puzzled her, made her curious. He could work with that. And sex? Sex could wait. Hunter was well aware that intimacy was not merely physical. And she wasn’t missing out on anything she didn’t already have. It would be an uphill battle, fighting for her attentions, if Emma continued to sleep around… But if she were to be his prize, it was a battle worth fighting.

As if sensing his distant mind, Emma began to unbutton her blouse, snapping his attention back to her. Hunter stepped closer and took her hands, stopping her with her cleavage temptingly on display. By pure force of will, he raised his eyes up to hers, which stared wide back. She didn’t expect this. He had her attention.

“That’s not what I came for,” he said simply. Then, slipping a hand around the nape of her neck, he stepped forward and pulled her up into a passionate kiss.

At first Emma’s lips were stiff with surprise. Her feet left the ground as Hunter picked her up into a tight embrace. She breathed in his intoxicating musk. His stubble ground roughly against her chin. She felt his wiry body against hers, lean and powerful. Her own body hummed with feeling, her sweaty skin now flushed with arousal. She found herself responding to his affection, her lips interlocking with his as their tongues journeyed into foreign territory.

Damn, she’d forgotten how satisfying a good kiss could be.

She was returned to her feet too soon, her moist lips left slightly agape as she opened her eyes. Hunter continued to embrace her, guiding them to the nearest couch where they collapsed in a tangled mess.

With Hunter down at Emma’s level it was her turn to initiate the canoodling. She all but pounced on him, attacking his mouth with a ferocity that would put a tiger to shame. But true to his name, Hunter was no easy prey. Within moments he was on top of her, crushing her lips on his own terms.

Eventually they broke apart and sat up, chests heaving with every breath. Emma fumbled with her waist belt, loosening it to give herself more room to breathe.

“You’re one hell of a kisser,” sighed Hunter, stroking her tousled hair.

“Not a bad pair of lips yourself. Do you practice in the mirror?” Emma teased, resting her head on his shoulder.

Hunter chuckled but remained silent, cradling her head in his hands.

They spoke long into the afternoon, sharing histories, hobbies, hopes, and hickeys. They had enough common interests to make idle conversation entertaining, but not so many that they became critical of each other’s field of study. No clothes were shed, but they did talk about sex. A lot. It turned out her idea of “out there” was doing it doggy-style, though Hunter was surprised to discover she didn’t mind men using her back door. In fact, the longer they spoke, the more he got the impression she’d been broken in by so many guys that no sexual experience was exciting for her anymore. No vanilla sexual experience, anyway. Because Hunter had a rather different idea of “out there.”

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