We were making good time going back to the village, though our backpacks were now a lot heavier from many items we scavenged in the ruins. Most of the first day, J and I walked behind everyone. He kept holding my hand, and I kept smiling for no particular reason.
On the afternoon of the second day, J suggested to camp after lunch and continue forward on the third day. Some of the group went hunting, but J declined and said he had something else in mind.
“Come, Dora. There is something I want to show you,” he said, hiding his excitement by suppressing a smile.
“Okay. Should I take anything with me?”
“No, no, I’ve got everything.”
He called out to Peter and Frank, who were sitting in front of the place prepared for the fire. “We’re off for the falls, guys!”
Frank, cleaning and preparing some fish, answered without looking at us, “Don’t do anything I wouldn’t do.”
“I guess anything goes then,” J said with a grin as he slung a small backpack over his shoulder. “C’mon!”
We made our path through a dense part of the forest, watching our steps. Birds singing high up in the trees accompanied our hike. J didn’t talk. He was walking in front, bending hard branches and holding them for me to pass.
Despite his silence, I felt a strange excitement that I could not explain. My heart was pounding, and it wasn’t due to our strenuous walk. There was something else.
Is this only about the surprise he had prepared?
“Where are we going?”
“You’ll see!” He didn’t turn, but I could tell he was smiling.
We pressed on.
As the path turned uphill and some of the vegetation changed, I heard a rumble, first quiet and then louder and louder, though I couldn’t identify the sound.
“Do you know what that is?” he said, turning to face me.
“Good! Now, close your eyes.”
“Yes, again. Come!”
“Okay,” I said and closed my eyes, holding J’s hand a bit tighter.
We continued walking, my steps careful. The rumbling sound was getting so loud I could hardly hear anything else.
“Okay, slowly…” he shouted above the noise. “Step up. Now straight a bit more. Okay, now wait here.”
He let go of my hand. I had to use all my willpower not to open my eyes at that moment.
“Don’t peek!” he called from somewhere in front of me.
“I’m not!” I shouted back.
It was several passes before he returned. He took my hand and led me a few more steps forward.
“You can open your eyes now!”
And I did.
In front of me was the most amazing sight of a river falling down a several IPs high smooth black rock into a small circular lake. The sunshine found its way between the trees and refracted off the cloud of water drops from the falling river into an arch of six brightly colored stripes.
This was – magnificent!
I turned to him and smiled, because I could not voice my feelings. This was more than beautiful.
“You like it?” His smile was plastered from one cheek to the other. “There’s more. Follow me.”
We circled around the lake, my hand in J’s, until we came to the right side of the waterfall.
He turned to me and mouthed the words without a sound, as it was obvious I couldn’t have heard him even if he was shouting. We’ll walk behind the falls is what I thought he said, but this was so unbelievable, I grimaced a question with my eyes. He smiled and tugged my hand to follow him.
Behind the curtain of free-falling water, there was a small ledge wide enough for only one person to use at a time, so I walked behind him, holding his hand tightly, mindful of the slippery floor as water splashed our clothes with fine drops.
Ten IPs in, he stepped through a narrow opening in the rock wall and pulled me in behind him. We entered a small tunnel and I had to rely on him leading me because it was pitch-dark. The deafening sound of the waterfall got quieter, and I could hear our steps again. The passage gently curved to the right, and my impression was that we were walking slightly uphill.
The next moment, we stepped out of the tunnel and into a large cave. The roof of the cave was open to the sky and the orange light from the setting sun streamed in, transforming the rough walls of the cave into a mosaic of different hues. A soft mat was laid out on the flat sandy floor.
All of a sudden, I realized—this was my dream, my Vision of him in the cave. My adrenaline spiked, and my heart started racing.
I tried to steady my breathing but my heart pounded madly against my rib cage. I was afraid I would faint again.
“I found this place,” he said, “a few years back, just by accident. And I remember thinking… that it would be a nice place to bring someone special. Although at the time, I never thought I’d do that.” He looked at me. “But, then you came. And changed everything.” He stepped closer and took my hands in his. “Changed me.”
“Changed you?” I asked, somewhat breathlessly. “How?”
“When the crèches revived us, we all woke up, we started living again, but somehow, I was missing…” he pressed his lips together in a thought. “…life.”
“I do not understand you, J. You were alive.”
“No,” he said, slowly shaking his head. He raised one of my hands and pressed my open palm to the middle of his chest. “You see, I was living, but I wasn’t alive. I was missing—fire, here, within me.”
His eyes smiled as he looked at me, such a clear nonverbal communication I could not misunderstand it.
“Now, everything is different. The flowers smell better; the air is fresher; the days are brighter; people are nicer; food tastes finer; everything—everything!—is so much better with you here.” He released my hands and gently placed his palms on my cheeks, his fingers warm on my skin. “De-freezing made me start breathing, but only when you came into my life did my heart start beating.”
I was speechless, overwhelmed by his words, and—without any doubt—completely in love with him.
He bent down and kissed me, the touch soft and gentle. We stayed like this for a long time. It was perfect.
He was perfect.
He drew back and gazed down at my body. He inhaled, keeping the breath locked in for a few moments, but then said, “I know… I know about the interpersonal space and all those things you have in your Uni world, but…” He looked up into my eyes. “I so want to be near you.” He touched the back of neck and pulled me closer, whispering, “I want to hold you really, really close. I need you, Dora.” His body was now completely touching mine, his lips next to my ear.
My heart was drumming and I could hardly catch my breath. The need, the wish, the desire boiled deep inside me. I knew what he felt because—I felt it too.
“This,” I whispered, “this was the place I saw in my Visions. Before I came here.”
“Is… this when we kissed?” he asked in a low voice.
I nodded, not trusting my voice anymore, then looked up into his dark eyes, his irises indistinguishable from his pupils in the dim light. I could feel the warmth of his body; I could smell the scent of his skin.
His lips parted as he touched my face, gently stroking my lips with his thumb. All of his movements were slow, every motion a question.
But my desire was impatient. It burned fast, scorching and desperate. And it wanted him now.
I rose onto my toes and kissed him.
For a moment he was still. Startled. But the next second, he took me in his arms, opening his lips, his tongue finding mine. I wrapped my arms around his neck, the depth of his kiss electrifying the core of my being, pooling all my senses in an exquisite aching need.
The stillness of the moment before was replaced by frantic and wild movements of passion. I slid my hands over his neck, shoulders and arms, feeling his tight muscles through the wet shirt. I could not get enough of him.
But then he stopped and moved away, his lips only an inch from mine. “I want to make love to you,” he whispered softly. “But I need to be sure that you want that too.”
Oh, J, my body is on fire. You have to feel it. But my voice was gone, so I lifted on my toes again, accidentally sliding my breasts against his skin, and kissed him. He closed his eyes for an instant, looking unbalanced before he took another heavy breath.
“I want you too,” I managed to whisper.
There was a moment’s pause, and then he leaned in for a kiss, a passionate response to my words. His lips left mine and traced down my neck, a tickling sensation mingled with a very deep, very primal anticipation.
As he slid his hand underneath my shirt, I stopped breathing all together, waiting.
His lips next to my ear, he whispered, “Breathe, love…”
The moment his warm palms started sliding upward, I took a breath. His fingertips left trails on my skin wherever he touched it, and my whole body tensed when they slid across the soft crevice under my breasts.
I stopped breathing again.
He nipped my earlobe, his palm sliding upward, softly pressing the tight pebble between his fingers, the touch sending jolts through my body, pooling at my base, rousing it awake.
I lost tension in my knees, and I would have fallen if he hadn’t been holding me. The craving I felt for him, no, the craving my body felt for his, was nothing I had ever experienced before. I had IC sessions in my life, but how my body reacted to J now, caused my mind to spin, caused my body to shift out of control.
A random thought intruded: Why couldn’t Descendants experience these extreme, exquisite feelings? Why were these bodily responses suppressed?
But the thought was gone as fast as it came, as J lifted my shirt, the wet fabric sticking to my skin as he slid it up, my hair still wrapped in its folds. He gently pulled it over my head and dropped it on the ground, my damp hair falling on my back again, cooling my skin. Then he loosened the waist string of my dress and it sank to the ground too.
J took a step backward and holding the tips of my fingers he raised my arms slightly and gazed down the length of my body.
“Wow,” he whispered, his breaths heavy. “You look… beautiful.”
The hunger in his eyes was unmistakable, and for a fraction of a moment, his stare looked almost predatory. Then he took a step forward, cupped my face and kissed me so deeply, I felt its rousing power rippling in every part of my body.
Feeling his hot breaths on my skin and the cool touch of his tongue, I felt him biting my ear lobe, licking my neck and collarbone, then slowly sliding down my body. I closed my eyes, anticipating, trembling from within.
His kisses became more urgent, more desperate, as his lips explored my body. I moaned involuntarily, an invigorating anticipation gathering somewhere deep inside me, tightening my inner muscles.
The moment his lips touched the tip of my breast, the soft pressure between his tongue and teeth sent an intense sensation through my body that made me lose all control.
Engrossed in my own fireworks of sensations, I was barely aware that he’d slid off his clothes too, until he lifted my knee, wrapping my leg around his waist—and I felt it, his heated body next to mine, his arousal touching the slippery entrance.
My eyes locked onto his, arms and legs embraced, in the warm orange light of the setting sun, our heavy breaths echoed in the cave. Then J lifted me up and knelt on a mat. As my knees touched the floor, I lifted up slightly, adjusting the position, and then without a second thought, I finally indulged my inner craving: I slid onto him. The motion induced the sweetest agony of desire deep inside my belly.
J moaned as I pressed myself on him completely, arching backward, purposefully bringing my breasts close to his mouth. And then everything became a haze. The exquisite fullness I felt inside me, the burning feeling his kisses left on my skin, the thrusting movements he now began… It drove me insane.
I was unaware, crazy, breathless, as he moved my body in a rhythm that matched his breathing, lost in this new sensation that peaked a little bit every time our bodies connected.
My mind was spinning and I was barely aware of my surroundings, of the sounds, of anything else that wasn’t the increasing need I felt inside me.
Suddenly, he lifted me up and then pushed me back down, lifting his hips up at the same time. And in that moment, the pressure building up inside me exploded into a thousand pieces, my inner muscles contracting instinctively, releasing me to the most exhilarating and overpowering sensation of my life.
For the next few moments, everything was a blur. I thought I heard him calling my name, but I wasn’t certain. I was lost in this unique moment in my life, shivering from my head to my toes.
Tears rolled down my face as I looked up at the open sky. I couldn’t stop them. I was so immensely happy, my body ecstatic.
All of a sudden, J took my face in his hands. “Dora! Oh, my God, I’m sorry. Did I hurt you?”
He wiped away my tears, but new ones came tumbling down. I looked at him, his face blurry through tears collected on the rims of my eyes.
“No, no, no… no,” I said, shaking my head.
“Dora, why are you crying?” His voice was urgent.
I looked up again and then started laughing out loud. “What—was—that?” More tears spilled as I continued laughing.
“Oh, you mean the orgasm?” His voice relaxed.
“Ah, the orgasm! That’s what Tania was talking about! I understand. Finally.”
I laughed again.
The strongest driver of evolution. She is so right.
I looked at him and then hugged him tightly. “That was out of this world.”
He squeezed me back and rested his cheek on my chest. “Maybe out of your old world, but it’s definitely part of this one.”