Soundtrack: I know we could both fall flat, let’s just fall and leave it at that. – Reckless Kelly, “Let’s Just Fall”
“I don’t want to leave yet,” Ginger whined like a little girl. Her arms and legs were wrapped around the armrest of the porch swing. Kris sat down next to her. Everything was packed and stowed, much of it back at Ginger’s parents’ house.
“We can come back next summer,” Kris put his chin on her shoulder. She stuck her lip out and shook her head, doing her best impression of a temper tantrum. Kris put him arm around her waist and let her stay put. “A week at Sid’s, two in Montreal, then we move.”
Ginger let him kiss her neck. “At least Sid has a lake.”
Ginger hit the ground running. It was unseasonably hot in Nova Scotia and she’d sweated all the way from Halifax even with the windows open. Sid’s house was right on the lake with a long dock extending out over the water. Sid was at the end, rod in hand and hook in the water – they were early. He looked over at the sound of pounding feet. Ginger pulled her top off and dropped it, leapt out of her shorts and hauled right on past him. SPLASH!
“Wooohooo!” she shouted as she surfaced. Max appeared on the porch, followed by Jordan. Kris was right behind her, still in his regular shorts, dropping his phone and wallet on Sid’s tackle box and launching into a cannonball.
“Hi Sid!” she waved from the water. Kris yanked her under, then they both bobbed to the surface.
“You scared away my fish,” he said drily.
Ginger smiled. “I brought you something better.” She pointed toward the house – Dani was leaning against the railing, waving. Sid dropped the fishing gear in an untidy heap.
“Are you wearing a swimsuit?” he called.
“Then you’d better run!” He accelerated from a jog as she dashed around the front of the house.
Marc-Andre came onto the porch and stood next to Jordan. Kris and Ginger were in the water, wrapped up together, kissing. “So that’s her?”
“She’s the one,” Jordan said.
“Jordan!” Ginger sat down, soaking wet, right in his lap. He held her in an iron grip and pressed a cold can to her skin till she shrieked. She managed to wriggle away, only to drop into Marc’s lap in the next chair.
“Hi!” she said. “I’m Ginger.”
Marc was already laughing. “You are exactly as I expected, Ginger. It is a pleasure to finally meet you.”
“Oh, if I’d known you were so nice I wouldn’t have dripped all over you!” She jerked her thumb toward Jordan. “I thought you’d be like the rest of these fools.” She got her own chair and drink and settled down in the sunlight. Her skin was dry in less than ten minutes.
“So you are moving to Pittsburgh?” Marc asked. “My girlfriend will be here later, she’ll love to meet you. And she’ll make sure you love Pittsburgh.”
Sid reappeared just before dinner time, his hair a mess and a huge smile on his face. Twenty minutes later, Dani emerged showered and dressed in fresh clothes. She gave Ginger a wide-eyed look and mouthed ‘WOW.’ Sid whistled his way into the fridge and out to the grill where Jordan and Max were already getting things started. The heat of the day had not broken, and Ginger fanned herself with a menu from the local Chinese place. Kris lifted her hair from her neck and blew in her ear.
“Having fun?” he asked.
She turned toward him and kissed his lips. “Not better than our lake house, but pretty damned good.”
The boys grilled up steaks and chicken kabobs, Dani made an avocado salad. They pushed two patio tables together and ate family-style. Once or twice, Dani almost lost an appendage by not moving quickly enough for a dish. Sidney took to serving her before himself. As they ate, Ginger felt this tight knit group of guys could be her new family. Of course Jordan had always been family, but she would need more people in Pittsburgh. And girls, she would need people who didn’t travel. Ginger didn’t pretend to understand the life she was signing up for and she’d be grateful to have someone to show her the ropes.
“Marc, when does your girlfriend get here?”
She finally arrived when they were clearing ice cream dishes from the table. Marc’s phone chirped as a car rolled to a stop and the sound of a door shutting echoed through the night. Two minutes later, a tall brunette with a warm smile emerged onto the porch. The guys all greeted her enthusiastically – no fake politeness for the sake of someone else’s date. Ginger liked her immediately.
“So you are Ginger,” she said, opening her arms for a hug. She said something in French to Kris that made him blush. Then she translated to Ginger. “Kris said you were beautiful but I think he was underestimating. I’m very happy you’re coming to Pittsburgh!”
Vero took Ginger on a walk down to the dock while Kris settled down to a beer at the newly clean table. Marc took the seat next to him, and spoke in French.
“Have you told her yet?”
Kris’ heart skipped a beat. He hadn’t said anything to Marc. “Told her what?”
“You obviously love her,” Marc said without taking his eyes of the silhouette of the two girls. “Have you told her?”
Kris admired the outline of their bodies against the dark night, moonlight flickering on the surface of the lake. “Not yet. I think it’s still too soon.”
Marc shook his head. “She’s already moving with you.”
Kris knew he loved her. He was pretty sure she felt the same. But he still felt fragile, like everything could come apart between now and then. He wouldn’t feel sure until she was in Pittsburgh, in their house, making a life for herself that included him. Not just a summer, a life.
“Soon, I’ll tell her soon.”
Vero didn’t need to be asked, she just spoke to all of Ginger’s questions. She was frank and open, even candid about her own relationship with Marc. She obviously felt a kinship with Ginger. When Vero explained how close Kris and Marc were, how alike in a lot of ways, Ginger realized she’d been harboring a fear of being lonely in Pittsburgh. Now she knew that wouldn’t be.
“Many of the guys, they cheat on their girlfriends,” Vero was saying. “I don’t think Kris is like this, I have never known him to cheat before. And the girls before… they were not like you. But many of the guys do, so you will always worry.” She paused, like she was debating, then continued. “Marc cheated once. He says it was the only time. And he told me himself, instead of letting me find out. It was his first year in the League and it was hard, because like you I moved there for him. But I forgave him and we are stronger now.”
Ginger gave her a small, tight smile. Her heart felt squeezed listening to someone tell such truth. She saw herself through a telescope, in Vero’s position.
“Do you remember, when you were young, what Jordan was like after a bad game?” Vero asked.
“Impossible,” Ginger admitted.
“They are all like that. You’ll learn his quirks. Some want to fight, others to fuck, some to be left alone to wallow. Sidney wallows. Kris, I think Kris will let you stay close until he gets through it himself. Marc gets very quiet, sometimes for a few days, but I just move around him until he’s ready to come back.” Vero stopped. “I feel like I’m telling you all the bad things! Mostly it’s wonderful. The wives and girlfriends do charity work, which you’ll be expected to help with. It’s fun, mostly, and will be more fun with you there. And you’ll have school, so you’ll have your own life.”
They moved to the side of the dock and sat down, swinging their legs over the water.
“You love him,” Vero said.
Ginger looked at her toes. “I do.”
Vero rocked against Ginger’s shoulder giving her a little bump. “You’re very lucky. And so is Kris.”
Everyone was beat from traveling and the heat. Ginger lay on top of the blankets in just her underwear, like a dog splayed out in front of a fan. Kris lay next to her, just breathing in sync. He reached for her fingers. Just like that, they fell asleep.
Dani was making breakfast in one of Sidney’s shirts when Ginger came into the kitchen. She handed down a coffee mug and passed it to her friend.
“Late night?” Ginger asked, not hiding her shit-eating grin.
“He’s like a puppy - if you don’t walk him every few hours, he’ll chew up the furniture and wreck the place.” She laughed, one hand on the counter to steady herself. “This is crazy, but it’s really fun. Thanks for bringing me, Ginger.”
Ginger put an arm around Dani’s neck. “Hey, he asked me to bring you. Seems like he got a taste of something he likes!” She swatted Dani’s butt and skipped out of the kitchen.
Jordan came through the living room in just shorts. It always gave Ginger a little twinge – he was really, truly beautiful. Sure, when he looked at him she saw twenty years of slap fights and sticking gum in each other’s hair. But she also saw her best friend and a really excellent guy.
“Jordan, I’m going to make it my mission in Pittsburgh to find you a girlfriend. Someone who deserves you.”
Jordan sat down and pulled her into a sleepy hug. “Are you getting all sappy? Do you have your period?” She slapped him, but he held tight. “Don’t worry, Ginger. I won’t replace you with some other girl if you promise not to forget about me when you’re all loved up with Tanger.”
Ginger hugged him back. “I won’t. You’ll always be welcome.”
“Can I come over every day? And you’ll make me peanut butter and jelly, no crust? I could use some help with my laundry too – how does my mom make it smell so good?”
Ginger rolled her eyes. “I’m almost scared to see how you live without us.”
The heat was unbearable. Even the lake water seemed warm. By 3 PM everyone was a zombie, all the ice cream was gone and Vero lay on the floor, holding an ice tray to her head. “Sidney, you make 10 million a year why don’t you have air conditioning?”
On the couch, Sid didn’t lift his head from Dani’s lap. “We never need it up here. Let’s go somewhere that has it. The movies?”
As they dragged themselves into a few cars, Ginger dawdled upstairs changing her clothes. When she finally came down, just Kris was waiting. They turned up the A/C in the Jeep and pulled onto the road. About a mile down, Ginger had previously spotted a small lane that veered off to the left. When they were almost there, she cranked the AC to full blast, unbuckled her seat belt and pulled off her shirt.
“What are you doing?” Kris was looking at her, not the road.
“Pull down there,” she said, unbuttoning her shorts. “We are not going to the movies.”
With a laugh, Kris wrenched the wheel in a dramatic turn and bounced Ginger around. By now, she was down to her bra and underwear. Kris went a few hundred yards, drove into a semi-clearing under some trees and was barely out of his seatbelt before he climbed right into the passenger on top of her. The gearshift got kneed, the glove box was stamped with a dirty shoeprint. Ginger reclined her seat and scooted out from underneath, into the backseat.
“Viens ici,” she crooked a finger at him.
Last night was the first night they’d spent together without having sex. Kris woke to the realization that he’d been holding her hand for nearly nine hours and he still felt satisfied. Sure she was sprawled out in her panties and he could think of a million things he wanted to do, but he didn’t need them. He only needed this.
Now she was naked in the backseat of his car and he couldn’t get there fast enough.
Kris tumbled over the headrest, his shirt partway off as he tried to do everything at once. One sandal obligingly fell by itself, the other he kicked away. Ginger already had his shorts open. He untangled his head from the fabric but not from his hair when she was already kissing him.
Ginger had also realized they’d gone the night just being together, without being together. She thought it was the kind of thing Vero had been talking about – “you’re lucky.” She was, and she knew it. But there would be plenty of lonely nights during the season and now she had a mind to stockpile some quality memories.
Before Kris was even out of his shorts, Ginger was inside them. His skin was hot to the touch and his erection grew in her hands. She spit into her palm and worked it over his hard-on, the slippery substance giving her the freedom to stroke his full length. He finally got his shorts off and put his mouth back on hers. They were half-sitting, half-kneeling in the back of the Jeep. Kris was hunched over and still his head brushed the ceiling. She glided her hand up, down and over the head of his penis. He moved his hips, pressing himself firmly into her grip as she spit in her other hand and added it to party. Kris’ hands kneaded at her breasts then he slid one up the inside of her thigh and spread his fingers into the lips of her pussy.
It’s only been 16 hours, maybe 20, Ginger thought as she wondered how it was possible to be so hot for someone all of the time. He might need road trips just to recover from me. She reached under his cock and cupped his balls, running her nails gently along where the sac met his body. He moaned encouragement.
Kris’ brain was blank. His entire sentient being was currently occupied by Ginger’s hands. He dragged one finger along her slit, felt her hot and wet and waiting, and knew he wouldn’t going to last long.
There wasn’t much room in the car. He pulled her up and bent her over the back of the seat she was kneeling on. Kris took a moment he really couldn’t spare to imprint the sight of her perfect bottom lifted into the air. He kissed the folds at the very top of the back of her thighs then ran his tongue once, slowly, along her glistening lips. She purred. He set the length of his erection against the crack of her ass and leaned forward to fondle her breasts. She arched her back, turning her face to his, and kissed him.
He tapped the head of his dick twice against her and then slid himself into her juicy core. Almost instantly she moaned. He held onto the seat and rocked deep into the heat of her body at a steady rhythm. Ginger bounced back against him until soon they were slamming themselves together. Kris moved his hands to the windows, the ceiling, but he couldn’t get the grip he wanted.
“Kris,” she panted, raising her head. Without thinking, he grabbed a handful of her thick, dark red hair and pulled himself in up to the hilt. She cried out, but it was the kind of pain that increased pleasure. By the second pull, she was begging for it. “Harder, Kris.”
His other hand traced the curve of her hip over the rise of her ass. She reached for it, pulled it under and pressed his fingers to her clit. She was so wet he could barely tweak it, so he settled the putting two fingers out straight and pushing down along her front. She shifted from side to side to do the rest.
Kris was rock hard, still with a handful of Ginger’s hair. She moved faster, like a pot of water coming to a boil. His hand from her lap circled around her stomach and pulled her back. He bent his knees under him, now kneeling with Ginger practically sitting in his lap. He didn’t need to push her against the seat. The weight of Ginger’s body dropped her down fully onto his cock. She sobbed out a breath as he reached as deep as she could take. With his arm at her waist, he held her down and ground his dick into her so she couldn’t catch her breath. Then he pumped his thighs and she bounced, bottoming out onto him again. The third time, she had tears in her eyes. He moved his hand from her hair and pressed two other fingers down over her clit.
Kris was all the way in, there was no more of Ginger to be had. As he bounced her like a rag doll on his cock, feeling her liquid coat him, her and probably the whole car seat, he massaged her hot button until she started to pant. Every muscle in her body grew taut, from her calves to her ass, and he knew she was very close. He needed her to be close.
Ginger tossed her head back onto Kris’ shoulder as he refused to let up his assault on her body. His fingers and dick were so deep in her they could almost touch each other. The edges of her vision were darkening and the pit of her stomach rippled like a pulse of light. She reached one arm over her shoulder, grabbed a hold of his hair, and pulled his face to her shoulder.
“Harder,” she barked, not even sure if she meant it.
He obliged, slamming up into her. She put her hands on the ceiling and held herself down into his lap. When she finally got enough traction to flick her hips, once was all it took.
Ginger moved suddenly, her body twisting and taking Kris’ throbbing erection with it. She swiveled, catching him by surprise, breaking his concentration. He came like a bomb detonating and cursed out loud. His body poured itself into Ginger’s hot little hole, pulsing hard a few times before he felt her go too, back arching, abs trembling, mouth open in a small, grateful noise. Ginger ground herself into him, riding out the last few pulses of her orgasm. Kris was holding her hair again.
“Wow,” her head flopped forward onto the seat.
Kris drew himself gently out, already feeling tender and sore. He laid his face against her back. “Oui. Better than a movie.”