She scoots forward so Evan can slip into the tub behind her just as Phish comes on the speakers. As the song begins playing, Esme finds herself smiling as she feels Evan’s body warm behind her, his arms enfolding her. He nuzzles the back of her neck, still wet after she’d sunk her body down up to her chin just minutes earlier.
The song, Show of Life, is one of their favorites. Years ago, they’d left the kids with his parents for the weekend so they could see the band in concert. Esme remembers how the years faded from their faces then, replaced by smiles, giggles, and laughter that made them feel so young again. They’d made love till the sun came up, and she remembers how it felt just like that first night they spent in Atlantic City when he was her first — and her only. But it’s not like Esme thinks she’s missing anything, not even after hearing Marina’s stories of her exploits before marriage — and after. Esme’s known better than to tell them the truth, that she’s only been intimate with one man.
Then she wonders if he’ll always be the only one for her. Would she have someone else, and if she did, would that mean that Evan would had left her for someone else, the way her father had done to her mother? No explanations, no apologies. It is what it is, babe. I found someone else.
“Penny for your thoughts?” Evan asks her as she rests her head on his shoulder. He’s grabbed the sponge and is lathering her arm, his hand moving up to her shoulder and back down. Her other hand is stroking his thigh, feeling the muscles tense beneath her touch, his erection hard against her back.
“It’s been awhile,” she says, thinking it best just to get it out. “We’ve been so busy with work and the kids–” Esme stops herself, realizing that she’s brought up the very things that he’s made sure to get out of the way, even if it was just for part of the weekend. “Sorry–”
“Don’t apologize,” he murmurs. “It has been awhile. But tonight and tomorrow, it’s just going to be us. Will that be alright?”
“No talk of anything but us?” She asks, looking up at him. She loves the way his nose ends into a defined sharp angle along the tip, one that someone once said was the nose granted by the gods. He could have been a model, she thinks, but he’d chosen to become a father instead.
“Just us,” he whispers, setting the sponge aside and taking the shampoo from the side of the tub. “Why don’t you let me wash your hair?”
And with those words, Evan closes the world just to themselves, his hands spreading the shampoo onto her long dark hair that’s spent way too much time being tied into a bun, his fingers massaging her scalp. It gives her goosebumps the way he does it, that she finds herself sighing and almost purring like a cat, relaxing her head and neck so that he can maneuver her head gently forward and back, according to the movement of his fingers. She forgets that she’s gripping his thigh, her fingers digging into his skin as his fingers slide behind her ear, the nerve endings in a turmoil over the sensations that engulf them.
Evan rinses her hair slowly, still taking his time as her breathing turns shallower, faster. There’s something building inside her, one that starts from the pit of her belly, spreading upwards as if seeking release that only she can let loose. When his hand drifts lower to dip between her legs, Esme knows she’s lost.
I originally released Date Night as a short story in 2015 but later unpublished it and offered it only to subscribers. But of late, I’ve been wanting to release it again, this time with other exclusive short stories I’ve written featuring characters from my books. A revisiting, in a way, so Date Night, A Short Story Collection was born and re-published yesterday.
Besides Date Night which features a new couple, Esme and Evan, the fifth edition includes stories featuring Ashe and Riley (Private Lessons), Billie and Heath (The Things that Matter), His Present (Sam and Erik – ultra steamy!), and a first time exclusive, Harlow and Dax (Playing Hooky).
You can purchase the collection (22K words) on Amazon and Smashwords (epub). I’m currently still waiting for the book to go live on other platforms.