The envelope from UT Houston stayed hidden in Jesse’s file cabinet for a week before she even had the nerve to tell Asher it had arrived. The other rejection letters from Seattle Pacific University and Seattle University and University of Washington were thinner, only containing one page and a quick ‘thank you for your application,’ a band-aid ripped off clean and swift—but this one from UT was thick. That had to mean something, right? That was a good sign. Jesse wasn’t really even sure she wanted an MFA when she applied, but then when there was more than no chance at all hiding in her very own drawer, she is pretty sure she wants nothing else in the world more.
“Asher, call me back when you get this. Love you baby.” Jesse leaves a voice mail. Asher is probably still with clients, 6pm on a Tuesday, but it was worth a try before Jesse goes in for her shift at the store.
Would Asher go with her? Would she want to? What if they got married? Is that crazy? What if they broke up? How would sex ever be this good with anyone ever again?
Jesse’s mind raced with stress and change and all the options in the history of options that ever there was. She finally stripped her jeans and boxer briefs off and dropped them next to her bed, pulling her vibrator out from the box on the bookshelf that held her harness, Shilo packing and playing cock, and the nipple clamps that she’d brought from Asher’s house, and she pulled back the covers and slid between the sheets. The bed had a chill underneath the fabric, something that turning up the heat never seems to help, as if the bed had a secret draft that is always letting out warmth. Maybe that’s why they always stay at Asher’s house.
Jesse put a pillow over her forehead and eyes to block the light, wanting to only feel and let her mind think and wander. She turned on the vibrator and touched it to her cunt, using the broad side of it to work the wet out of her and ease her into wanting.
She thought about Asher, whose dresses and layers of skirts and fluff of fabrics make her mouth water and palms sweat. And that one shirt of Asher’s, thin as the skin of dried grass, the one she always wears with extra bright colored bras under so everyone knows it’s on purpose. Jesse thought of that time she’d crawled under the table, dug through the layers of crinoline in Asher’s princess-cut dress, and worked her mouth up Asher’s stockings until she reached the wet between her legs and lapped and lapped until Asher banged on the table and squeezed Jesse’s head with her thighs so hard that Jesse couldn’t hear anything. Jesse was so dizzy with lust and permission, so intoxicated by Asher’s bold shamelessness, so in love. Just the memory made her almost spill over the edge of orgasm, so it only took another minute for Jesse to put the vibrator in exactly the right spot, and come.
After Jesse got off, she fell asleep, dreaming that she was swimming out to an expansive horizon on a perfectly calm sea. Her swimming was easeful, as simple and known to her body as walking, as calm as laying in the grass under dappled sunlight through bright green leaves. She woke refreshed and clear, and put the envelope and looming decision out of her mind, holding instead to the expanse of blue as she squeezed back into her tightest and stretchiest skinny jeans, and headed to work.
Jesse knows she’s not supposed to want Asher to beg her to stay, but she hopes she does. She’s not supposed to want Asher to drop her whole life here and come with her, but she wants that too. Maybe she’s supposed to want to stay, but she doesn’t. She’s been in Seattle her whole life. It’s comfortable, easy, simple. But since Asher, and since the kind of sex she’s been having with Asher, Jesse’s world has been split open—like it was thrown off of something really tall. So why not reassemble it in a new configuration? She hates the dreary rain, hates that she can never quite get warm and always ends up shivering in the dark under clouds splashed orange with city streetlight glow. She wants tropical fruit and thunderstorms and a thriving metropolis. She wants to discover who she’ll be when she’s states away from her narcissistic step-mom who has never quite allowed Jesse to separate, and who still expects “this gay thing” to be a phase. What would happen then? What if Jesse could remake herself from scratch? The idea feels like a betrayal somehow, a secret she shouldn’t reveal for fear of being so shamed she’ll never share herself, even to herself.
“Got your message. Meetings ran late. Still coming over after work?” Asher texts Jesse after her shift starts, so she doesn’t reply until she’s off the floor for her break.
“Sure. Be there around 10, I’m closing.” Jesse texts.
“Bring your dick, I really wanna get fucked hard tonight,” Asher replies right away. Jesse hesitates. She doesn’t have it, will have to go home to pick it up. She isn’t sure she can get it up to fuck, but then again, Asher always seems to be able to inspire her, even after almost a year together. But sometimes it feels like it doesn’t matter that Jesse is the one fucking her, that as long as Asher gets fucked, that is the real desire.
When Jesse goes back to her apartment, past where the neighbors doors are always leaking pot smoke, up the stairway with the lamp out and around the dark dark corner where Jesse always holds her breath, slides her key into the lock that always sticks, she grabs the strap-on and the harness, the nipple clamps, and the thick envelope from its hiding place in her file cabinet, and pulling the hood of her sweatshirt up, she heads back out into the grey Seattle night.
Two hours later, Asher is worn out and giddy with endorphins and Jesse is sleepy but still wet and swollen. Asher works her mouth on Jesse’s clit, sprawled naked between Jesse’s open thighs, sheets and blankets long tossed onto the floor, tangled around the bed. Asher bends her own knees to lift her feet in the air, parting Jesse’s cunt gently with her fingers, and expertly uses the smooth inner parts of her own mouth to suck.
Jesse is having trouble letting go and relaxing, but coaxes herself through it gently in her own head. It’s okay. You’re safe and you can do it. Just focus on how good it feels. It feels so good. Give her direction if you want more or less of something. She’ll listen. It’s okay.
She doesn’t need to change what Asher does, once she can relax. Asher has done this before, not tons, but probably a dozen times in the last year, and enough to get a feel for what Jesse’s body craves and how she likes to be touched and tongued and held. Asher works her mouth, gently sucking, flicking her tongue over Jesse’s clit, tugging and parting and opening. It feels to Jesse like it is taking her a very long time to get off, and she tries not to let her brain yell at her for being so slow, so unresponsive. It’s okay to take a while. This isn’t a race. Nobody’s in a hurry, Asher’s not in a hurry, she tells herself.
When Jesse finally comes, Asher’s arms are underneath Jesse’s thighs, Jesse is pushing her cunt hard into Asher’s mouth, her hands on Asher’s head and tangled in her hair. Asher is sucking and flicking with her tongue and pulling with her fingers. Jesse feels all that tension well up and up and up in her, until her pelvis feels so full of pressure from all sides, inside and outside and all around, until something gives way and it pours open, her whole body shuddering, crying out, gasping, moaning Asher’s name.
Asher softens her touches and rests her head on Jesse’s thigh for a minute, then wipes some of the wet from her mouth and slides up next to Jesse, tucking her head onto Jesse’s shoulder. Jesse kisses her, tasting her own musky sweetness and just some hints of Asher’s orange and cream lip gloss.
“Was that … okay?” Asher asks finally, in a small voice.
“So good,” Jesse moans out the words, limbs still liquidy and soft. “I love how you use your mouth. I love how you hold me so well. Thank you. That was … just right.”
Asher snuggles closer. “Good. I want to do it how you like it.”
“I know,” Jesse yawns, body spent, wrung out, tired from her retail shift and from staying up late last night finishing an essay. She wants to bring up the envelope, the future, what they’re going to do. She wants to ask Asher what she thinks, what she wants, what kind of life she could possibly envision them having together, what her next tattoo is going to be. She wants to hear Asher brainstorm about places they could live or adventures they could take, elaborate meals they would make together for brunch on the weekends, what kind of TV shows they would watch while they were winding down from their jobs and lives and stresses of being queer in the world. She wants to brainstorm herself about poems she’ll write, essays she’ll submit to online magazines that will go viral and say important things, teachers she’ll work with, kinky conferences they could attend together. She wants to do all these things. With Asher. Asher, the girl who lit a fire inside her pelvis and told her exactly where it belonged. Asher, who instigates and entices, with a flip of the hair or the way she turns her knee in or how she spreads her legs. Asher, who isn’t shy, and isn’t afraid of looking at the truth.
“Goodnight,” Asher whispers, and puts out the light, kissing Jesse on the cheek and settling back in. Asher’s thick blanket has magically been pulled up over them both.
Jesse can’t get her mouth to open and her eyes to wake enough to form words, let alone to say them aloud, but she is ready to talk to Asher in the morning. Jesse starts drifting to sleep even as she’s imagining what she’ll do: She’ll get the envelope out, she’ll tell Asher it arrived, they’ll open it. And they’ll figure out what will happen next. Together.
Featured image from Crash Pad Series Episode 89: Hilt & Rusty Nails.