It was a balmy June Saturday in Napa valley, California. The winery Heather’s cousin Rosalind had chosen for the wedding was beautifully placed amidst rolling
hills with row after row of carefully manicured vines. An old white Victorian
mansion crowned the property, filled with antiques, amidst rich ancient
hardwood floors; the ceremony and reception were held in the lush green lawn which
poured out against the hillside behind the house.
Heather always loved weddings, and this was no exception. Her spirit this day felt so light and airy, she imagined she might float away across the hillside if a strong breeze came along. She was so happy for her cousin Rosalind; she and her groom were positively giddy in love, doting on each other so attentively they never noticed how some of the guests blushed just to watch them. Her soon-to-be-husband was a striking figure of a young man, tall and thin – till you got to his chest and shoulders (the physique of his water-polo days), light brown hair, and gentle hazel eyes. His strong hands and broad shoulders seemed to caress and shelter Rosalind like a delicate flower might thrive in the shade of a mighty oak. His vintage-styled double-breasted tux with tails seemed the perfect accent for the occasion.
Heather had been unable to be a bridesmaid, only able to fly in at the last minute for the wedding from a swimsuit modeling job in
But she was here now after the long flight, sipping from a delicious glass of champagne
that someone had put in her hand; the long plane flight already forgotten. She
was wearing a pink-champagne colored hand-brocade dress with one inch shoulder
straps and covered in a pattern of small brocaded flowers. The soft pink hue
popped with the crown of Heather’s deep wine-red hair in luscious curls
spilling softly around her bare shoulders. The dress was gathered gently to the left
at the waist with a small mock sash and sequined pin, embracing all her
feminine curves in flattery, and fell to an elegant length three inches below
the knee, with a side slit to just above the knee. Capping the end of Heather’s
long legs with back-seamed stockings, were her favorite pair of tall pink leather peep-toe
pumps which flashed deep magenta undersoles as she walked. Her toe nails, finger nails, and lips were all painted blood red, which Heather thought complimented her
A fleeting moment of regret whisked through her happiness as she caught sight of the lovely bridesmaids. Oh … they were so delicately feminine and beautiful; dressed in gauzy cream-colored bridesmaid dresses with the look of ballet costumes, delicate thin spaghetti straps over the shoulder, a slight curved plunge at the neckline revealing the barest hint of cleavage, a gathered empire waist flowing down to a delicate ruffle of fabric at the hem of a loose skirt, about four inches above the knees, which floated delicately as they walked in white low heeled sandals (more practical shoes for a lawn wedding than Heather’s). Completing the feminine vision was a handmade, delicate wreath of spring wild-flowers perched atop each maid’s beautiful long hair, each head a different hair color, sun-bleached blonde, several shades of auburn, brown, and black, worn loose about their shoulders. The entire visual effect could only work for pretty young girls like Rosalind’s lovely seven bridesmaids.
The bride’s gown was a vision of what the dainty bridesmaids dresses would become, when they grew up and became women. Still the thin straps caressing her shoulders, but now layers of Austrian lace, a shower of tiny lace roses across the bodice, figure-flattering ruching below the bust and gathering at the waist, which yet had no work of figure-flattery to do, with Rosalind’s size four waist and five foot nine frame. The long full skirt and train was made of layer upon layer of gauze so sheer you could see through the first three layers, and her veil was of the same airy gauze with another shower of tiny lace roses. Under the veil was a bouquet of Rosalind’s auburn hair in loose curls fluttering softly about her shoulders; her grandmother’s diamond hair pin gathering some of her hair from the sides in a sweep up to the pin in back, exposing matching diamond chandelier ear rings which announced every gesture of the bride with brilliant sparkles. It was difficult to say which was prettier, the dress or the bride; both blended into a floating vision from which no male on the planet could easily avert his eyes (not to mention the many envious females who secretly wished to be her). The long train was so light it floated across the trail of rose petals in her path, hardly seeming to disturb their lay. She was a vision of elegant, innocent, womanhood “floating” through her wedding day.
The wedding ceremony went off perfectly, romantic passion-filled vows, beautifully selected music, every toast on cue, each requisite dance of parents, children, and grandchildren performed with grace and dignity. The photographer captured each moment for posterity while hardly calling attention to herself. The newly married couple laughed so hard when they smooshed wedding cake into each other’s mouths that they fell into an embrace just to keep from falling over, forgetting the guests in the kiss that followed. When they danced their first waltz as husband and wife, no prince and princess ever more dazzling appeared.
Soon a large white Bentley whisked the blessed bliss-filled couple off to their secret newlywed tryst, leaving the guests to bask in the romantic afterglow of the wonderful event. As the reception party wore on, the music grew quieter, the guests began to relax and talk. Old friendships were renewed, distant relatives remarked at how big all the children had become, Aunt Rose – showing a bit of the bubbly in her – entertained with marvelous stories of growing up in the Scottish Highlands where she met and courted her husband Ian, sharing more details of the affair than Ian could bear without blushing.
Heather didn’t know as many of the guests as she thought she might, but that was okay, it gave her more time to catch up with her old friend Katelyn who had been the third – and Heather thought – prettiest bridesmaid. Neither Heather nor Katelyn were seeing anyone at the time, so their time was entirely their own, and they gifted that time to each other for almost the whole reception, beginning with a long overdue hug as soon as Katelyn was done with her ceremonial maid’s duties.
Katelyn had been slogging through school, a challenging pre-med program, hoping to become a pediatrician. But she thought Heather’s modeling career terribly exciting. Heather reminded her that a career in medicine would last a lot longer than any modeling career. Heather and Katelyn had been best girlfriends in grammar school in
California until Heather’s family had moved to
up-state New York.
They had tried to keep in touch with letters and email, but they both lived
too-busy lives. Being together again was like picking right up from some
unfinished sixth-grade conspiracy. They whispered secrets, giggled, and laughed
so hard once their heads bumped each other a bit painfully, straightening up with
a start, looking at the surprise in each others faces, they fell into another basket
of giggles. They even danced wildly with each other, in a twirling embrace,
when all the good looking guys had wuss’d-out, sitting around drinking and
talking sports, or business, or cars. Heather and Katelyn both had to deal with
daily stress in their lives and this glorious romantic day together was a tonic
both had needed for a very long time.
After a wonderful meal and almost too many glasses of delicious ice wine – a sweet fruity dessert wine with just a hint of roses – it began to be time to go, but the girlfriends could not bear to part after such short time to catch up. Heather suddenly jumped out of her chair beaming “I know! It’s only Saturday, and you said finals are over, you don’t have anything that has to get done for days! I’m staying at the beach house of a friend in
Carmel. You’re coming
with me for the whole week and I won’t take ‘no’ for an answer!” Katelyn, ever the
responsible one, gazed in the distance, feigned a weak protest that she had
errands to do, realizing even as she spoke the words, she had not the will
power to decline; it was a delightful proposal, the errands would have to do
Katelyn smiled at Heather, blinked her eyes cat-like, and proceeded to collect her things, saying some hasty goodbye’s, and they both piled into Heather’s rental car. They never even thought to turn on the radio for the three hour drive to
they had rediscovered their old knack for carrying on one and a half
conversations at the same time, anticipating each other's words, answering before
the other had finished a sentence. They were each thrilling that they could
still be best girlfriends after all these years, and so much time apart.
The beachfront property in
Carmel was the home of a publishing executive
that Heather had become good friends with. She had to work in New
York, but came to Carmel
as often as she could, and rented the place out to a short list of good
friends, just enough that you had to request it several months in advance to be
sure you could get it. It was an older home built decades before, but it had
been completely updated and remodeled just two summers ago. It was all granite
counters, stainless kitchen, a huge stone wood-burning fireplace, a neat stack
of clean oak firewood set into the stonework, with an eclectic assortment of colorful
comfortable furniture as if they had been there for years, but each piece was
like new, carefully selected by the owner. On what seemed to be every wall in
the home, were stunningly beautiful photographs, some black and white, others
in lavish color, some of fashion models draped across scenes all over the
world, and some were just majestic landscapes or striking architecture. The
housekeeper (a local resident hired by the owner to look after the place when
she was not there), had thoughtfully provided a bowl full of fresh fruit, and
filled the fridge with just enough basics to make breakfasts, and a few simple
meals. There was a small assortment of wine on the racks of a glass-fronted
wine chiller, and fragrant fresh-cut flowers in three rooms.
At the back of the house was an enormous redwood deck that cascaded into steps down to the beach. There were cypress trees dotted all through the area swaying gracefully in the breeze, and the steady constant roar of the ocean, like an accompanying instrumental to the music that was this beautiful landscape.
Heather and Katelyn unpacked, took a quick tour to explore the house, changed into bathing suits and beach wraps they found in the massive bedroom, and went out to the deck, barely interrupting their conversation since they first hugged at the reception. Now they poured some nice Pinot Noir wine they found in the kitchen, and sat on the deck in the first silence they’d known in hours, except for the throbbing roar of the ocean which they were each now listening to, smiling, finally able to relax. After a long while, Katelyn looked at Heather with a tiny nod toward the beach, enough that Heather rose to her feet and they each walked off down the beach wine glasses in one hand, arms over each other’s shoulders, tiptoeing through the deep soft warm sand that scrunched between their toes, and massaged their feet as they walked. The sun was setting now and the sky was certainly not sky and clouds, but a lush watercolor by God himself.
They walked a while down the beach darting in and out of the surf, holding hands, prancing like two does, swinging their hands, hardly speaking a word now, in stark contrast to just an hour before. As they returned up the beach to the house, the evening air began to get cool, but they suddenly both decided to drop their wraps and now-empty wine glasses in the sand and sprint into the surf. Heather’s long legs leapt across the small wavelets like a gazelle till it was deep enough that she dove under a larger wave and popped up behind the wave curl, her mane of wet hair flinging an arc of water which was chased by her squeal of delight at the refreshing cool ocean. She looked over her shoulder to find Katelyn in a strong breast stroke a few yards away. In a few more moments they were in deep enough to catch a small curling wave and body-surfed back to the shallow frothy beached waves. Gathering their wine glasses and wraps, they dried each other’s hair a bit with the wraps, and pranced off for the warmth of the house.
They poured another small splash of wine each, got out of their wet things and into luxurious soft pink and purple terry robes they found. Heather found a DVD of “The Devil Wears Prada” and they cuddled up together in a glove-soft magenta leather couch to watch the movie in the home’s surround-sound living room theater. It had been the most perfect day either could remember, but now the girls realized how exhausted they were. After the movie, they put some soft blues guitar music on a timer, and got ready for bed. There was only one huge master bedroom in the house, with an enormous four-post feather bed and a gas fireplace, but it wouldn’t be the first time Heather and Katelyn had a slumber party together, though that seemed like – almost was – a lifetime ago. They snuggled under a huge handmade quilt on the bed which Heather noted had the kind of perfect hand-stitching most people would think to be machine-stitched. The girls talked a bit more, sharing intimate things about broken hearts, guys they’d been serious about, family and friends they missed, intimate details of their secret lives which they never told another living soul on earth. The talk finally ran out, and in another moment each lovely head drifted off to a deep, restful, dreaming slumber.
As the sun drifted in through a large skylight at about ten the next morning, the girls slowly began to awake. Katelyn’s eyes squinted open first, and a sleepy smile bloomed on her face as she saw Heather’s face, covered in a few beautiful curls of red hair, just inches from her face. Katelyn reached up and brushed the strands away from Heather’s face, softly, not wanting to wake her, but Heather’s piercing blue eyes opened, followed by a sweet smile to see her best friend still close to her the next morning. Heather reached over and caressed Katelyn’s smooth silky soft dark hair. They just looked at each other for a what seemed like minutes, but was probably only seconds, and finally each said “Good morning girlfriend!” Their other hands reached up and clasped fingers, and in the same moment each kissed the clasped hands a long slow soft kiss. They looked at each other with the special love neither had ever known for any other. It was the love of a deep shared bond of friendship, spanning years of their lives, and yet there was … something more now. When last they had been this close they were young girls just beginning puberty, now they were grown women of great passion, and suddenly they each became aware of a delicious warmth growing deep inside, their hearts beating louder as if to compete with the still roaring ocean. Four lovely arms and legs slowly entwined in embrace as they closed their eyes and drowned in a deep passionate kiss, which seemed not to end. There was no hurry, no goal, each moment was enough in itself. They kissed, gazed into each other’s eyes, and kissed again, even longer this time. Very slowly, Heather rolled Katelyn back on her back and slid a hand smoothly from Katelyn’s lips, down her chin, caressing her neck, three delicate slender fingers caressing right between Katelyn’s breasts, and slid her palm slowly all the way down, letting her fingers just curl around and cup the warm space while she began to kiss and gently suck at Katelyn’s nipples, causing a small deep moan from someone in the bed, Heather wasn’t sure who. Katelyn reached over and pulled Heather on top of her, now each pressed against the other with slow small writhing motions as they kissed again. They just lay like this for a long time, not quite motionless, holding each other tenderly. This friendship which had been born many years ago of perfect innocence, had now grown into a perfectly safe sanctuary of passionate pleasure. Each knew everything of the other, trusted each other more than themselves, and they loved each other now more deeply than they had ever imagined they could. They would have been frightened at this passion, but it felt much too safe in this embrace to feel fear.
Each took brief turns with tongue and lips to explore wet quivering musky private places, still salty from the previous evening’s swim, glistening with passion, accompanied by soft female sounds. But they found more pleasure face to face, holding each other, kissing, caressing soft plump breasts with eager nipples. Each girl used two fingers to stroke the sensitive private places of the other. They kissed and gazed at each other until slowly they began to see an ecstatic moment dawning in the eyes of the other, the pleasure in each other's eyes multiplying their own into ever greater passion. The girls were happy to make this last as long as they could, but mutual elation eventually got away from them and they suddenly each burst into squeals of agonizing ecstasy such that the ocean roar must have blushed at its weakness. They were still not finished, continuing to writhe in wave after wave of delight. It may have only lasted seconds, but when time stands still seconds can almost last forever. Finally they collapsed in each others arms, each caressing the other’s hair and shoulders, short soft kisses, moans of satisfaction, and recognition.
After a long while, they got out of bed, buck-naked, and tip-toed into the kitchen holding hands. They sat quietly on the kitchen bar stools, shared an orange and an apple, smiling so hard their smiles might break but for the occasional playful giggle. They started some coffee, embraced with one more deep soft kiss, and headed off to the shower together.
Each knew that the other was thinking about all the wonderful time they would have for the next whole week they would now spend together at the beach house. There was plenty of time, no goal, no rush, each moment was enough in itself. They would just bask in the pleasures of being with their best girlfriend again after so many years apart.
(Not the end, but the rest is left to the reader as an exercise in sensual fantasy)