Just popping in to let you know that two of the best lesbian anthologies I’ve ever read are now available on Kindle Unlimited. Forbidden Fruit and First, both edited by Cheyenne Blue, offer the sort of erotic fiction that’s rather hard to find these days: stories that explore the nature and experience of desire, rather than just offering mindless sex scenes.
the interest of full disclosure, I’ll mention that Forbidden
Fruit includes my story “The First Stone”, about the
attraction between a hooker trying to go straight and a nun. Here’s
the start of that tale.
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“You're kinda pretty, for a nun.”
The voice was low and throaty, laced with echoes of the ghetto. It dragged me away from the columns of figures marching down the screen in front of me, out of the well-ordered realm of accounting and into the messiness of our inmates' lives. Our guests, I corrected myself. Nobody was forced to stay at Serenity House.
“Um — excuse me? Can I help you?”
My interlocutor grinned at me. Her plump, mauve-painted lips framed teeth that were a shocking white in her ebony face. She shook her head. Cheap, brassy earrings dangled from her fleshy lobes, swinging back and forth over her bare shoulders.
“Just wanted to say hi. Oh, an' to ask if I can stay out past curfew tonight. Heard you were in charge.” She extended a hand tipped with hot pink fingernails. “I'm Magnolia. Me and Moonbeam just got here yesterday.”
November in Boston, two weeks before Thanksgiving, but Magnolia's skin felt August-hot. The woman's breasts almost overflowed the sequined tube top that constrained them. Below, she wore baggy sweatpants with a Celtics logo that didn't hide her more than ample curves. Her feet were crammed into open-toed high heels of scuffed gold-toned plastic. She towered over me. I felt pretty sure that would be true even if I were standing.
“Moonbeam?” Confronted by this apparition, I couldn't seem to manage more than a couple of words.
“My kid.” Magnolia indicated a diminutive toddler with kinky pigtails, sprawled on the floor of the common room, surrounded by alphabet blocks. Hard to believe that delicate child was the offspring of this Amazon.
“Ah — um — well, you're very welcome here, Magnolia. We're glad to have you with us.” I struggled for the warm yet professional manner I'd learned to adopt with our guests. Rising from my chair, I gave her hand a firm squeeze before relinquishing it. My skin tingled in the aftermath. I'd been right; she stood half a head taller than my five feet six inches, and probably weighed nearly twice what I did. “Have a seat, please. I'm Sister Kathleen Patrick, the assistant director. But I guess you know that.”
She settled her bottom into the chair I'd indicated. “Yeah, the other gals told me. Pleased to meet you, Sister.” Her plucked eyebrows knotted into a frown. “That what I should call you? I ain't had much experience with nuns.”
Her obvious concern made me chuckle. “'Sister' would be fine. Or you can just call me Kathleen. We don't stand on ceremony here at Serenity House.”
“Not like at Baystate Rehab. You forget to call one of the nurses 'Miz' or 'Mister', you lose privs for twenty-four hours.” She swiped the back of her hand across her brown forehead, which was beaded with sweat. The woman must have a furnace inside.
There was something lush and tropical about Magnolia. Her name fit her. She seemed totally out of place in this shabby office lit by the unrelenting gray of the late autumn sky. I could imagine her wrapped in a rainbow-hued sarong, dancing barefoot on a beach beneath swaying palms. Or swimming naked through the waves under a golden moon...
I hauled my thoughts back to the present. “Is that where you've just come from?” Not all our guests had substance abuse problems, but it was pretty common.
“Escaped is more like it.” She giggled. “This place's like heaven after Bayhab. Six fucking weeks — oh, sorry, Sister — I mean, six long weeks in that hellhole! Away from my baby, too. 'Course, I deserved it. All the junk I pumped into my veins, not thinkin' about who'd care for her if something happened to me. Then the OD — I really fucked up. Oh, I'm sorry, Sister!”
“Never mind. So you've made yourself comfortable, then? You're happy with your room?” Yesterday had been my day off. Rachel must have done the intake. I reminded myself to check Magnolia's file after she'd left the office.
“It's great. I'm sharing with Lou-Ellen and her little boy. He's only a couple months older than Moonbeam. Food's good, too.” She flashed me another grin and glanced down at her generous body. “Not that I need it!”
Her laughter kindled mine. Our eyes met. Hers were espresso-brown, practically black, fringed with mascara-augmented lashes. They snagged me like magnets.
Something jolted through me — a lightning strike, a sudden storm, some personal earthquake. The floor dropped out from under my chair and I found myself suspended in space. My breath caught in my throat and perspiration soaked the armpits of my gray wool sweater. I'd been chilly before — we tried to stretch our donor's generosity as far as possible — but now I burned. I couldn't tear myself away from her gaze, though I knew I'd been staring far too long.
“Are you okay, Sister?” Her husky voice, barely louder than a whisper, wound its way into my stunned consciousness. Her hand hovered above mine, threatening a gesture of comfort.
Don't touch me, I pleaded silently. Don't. I pulled back, abruptly enough that I probably seemed impolite, and folded my hands in my lap, a safe distance from the smooth, dark glow of her skin. An almost forgotten ache woke in my belly. The tips of my breasts tingled under my shapeless garments.
“Ah — oh, um — sorry. I — um — just felt a bit faint. Most likely it's low blood sugar. I have problems with that sometimes.” I fumbled in my desk drawer and found a couple of lemon drops. “These help. Do you want one?”
“I shouldn't,” Magnolia replied. But she popped it into her mouth anyway, her lips pursed into a tight O around the candy.
I sucked hard on the sweet-sour nugget, glad for an excuse not to talk while I regained my composure. What in the name of Jesus was going on? Why was I reacting this way? She was a guest, a client. I had a responsibility to her and her child, a responsibility to protect and succor her. To nurture her fragile recovery and send her back into the world stronger, better able to handle the challenges I knew she'd face. To do that, I had to be friendly but a bit aloof. Our women needed the sense of authority that came with my status. They needed the discipline.
As for me — I was a nun, for heaven's sake, sworn to chastity and a pure life of service to others. Lust was a mortal sin.
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If you’re on Kindle Unlimited, you can read both of these great books for free. Do check them out!