Loni had felt her presence for weeks. From the steps of the brownstone she had an unobstructed glimpse into her living space. She waited nightly for the crisp sound of the piano escaping the window.
Summer heat was starting to retreat into Fall. Loni would soon be forced back into her domain and away from the beauty of the music. She needed to introduce herself. That thought scared her more than anything she had done in years.
She listened to the chords of the next set and realized it was new. The music overwhelmed her with its serenity and calmness. It may be new to her ears but it seemed like it was a natural to the player.
The music stopped. She jerked her head toward the window where the sounds no longer poured out. A door opening broke the silence and footsteps could be heard crossing the street.
The footsteps approached. Loni got up from her perch and stood, awaiting the visitor. Loni heard her breath; felt the outstretched hand.
Loni smiled brightly. "Loni. And I certainly hope you don't mind the audience."
"Not a bit. I've been meaning to come meet you for a while, and I finally got up the courage. Believe me, having you sit there and listen to me nightly has been my pleasure. I even started writing a new piece yesterday. However, I needed a title and since it was written with you in mind, I decided the time had come."
Loni, a little taken back by the compliment, leaned against the metal rail. "Wow. That piece I just heard was so beautiful. The elegance of it captures the feeling of Fall coming."
"No, it actually captures your beauty sitting here solemnly day in and day out."
Loni gasped at the comment and swayed slightly. Michelle leaned in to steady her.
"I'm sorry if I was out of line. I'll retreat back to my apartment. Please feel free to listen as you like." Michelle released her and headed across the street.
"Stop. Please don't go."
Michelle turned and saw Loni standing there looking sad. Her short brown hair was a little mussed and her hazel eyes looked slightly out of focus. But her lip turned down with a sad expression was what made Michelle halt. To be near her after all this time, knowing she was sitting out here every night listening, made her stomach flip.
Loni listened to the silence and knew Michelle was contemplating her next move. "It's not that I was frightened, it's just...I wanted to meet you so badly, and than bam...all of a sudden you're standing in front of me." Smiling, she continued "Your music moves me. I wait for the time to come sit on this stoop and float away. It just speaks to me." Sighing, Loni stopped.
Michelle stepped forward and reached for Loni. She stopped dead in her tracks realizing what it was, Loni was blind. She then allowed herself to gaze at her freely.
Loni's body reacted with warmth as she felt Michelle gawking at her. Breaking the silence she asked, "Would you like to come in for a drink?"
"No, I don't think that would be a good idea. But please feel free to listen whenever you like. It's good to know someone enjoys it. I'm sure some of the neighbors might disagree with you." Michelle shuffled her feet. "Well, it's time for me to go. Good to meet you, Loni. Maybe we can have that drink another time?"
Loni nodded and said, "Sure." Dejectedly Loni climbed the stairs, tripping on the doorframe as she went in. Mad at her carelessness she let herself into her apartment and collapsed on the couch.
"Chalk that one up to another missed opportunity," she muttered to herself. She stopped her wallowing and pulled herself up to make a snack. While sitting at the table eating her usual popcorn and parmesan, she heard the buzzer. She walked over to the speaker and said, "Yes?"
"Uhm...I know it's late but would you still be interested in that drink?" Michelle continued nervously. "We can walk to Jasper's on the corner if you like?"
Loni considered for just a moment then buzzed Michelle in. "Apartment 106. Second door on the left."
She stood by the door and waited for the knock before opening it. Michelle stood in the doorway smiling at the view in front of her. Loni looked a little stunned. Bits of popcorn and cheese were scattered along her shirt. Michelle reached up to brush it off but with a lightning quick response Loni stepped back.
"Oh, sorry. I was gonna get the bits of popcorn off your shirt," Michelle stammered.
Loni chuckled while brushing the crumbs away. "Let me grab my shoes and we can head out."
Michelle watched in amazement as Loni easily moved across the floor to the bench, sat down and put on her shoes quickly. Loni looked up. "It's not that amazing. You get used to things. I've been in this apartment for over a year. Believe me, when I first got here, there were a lot of bruises." Smiling she got up and made her way toward Michelle. Grabbing her elbow, Loni said, "Shall we?"
Michelle grinned and headed out the door feeling light with pleasure.
The walk was brisk and easy. The women entered the quiet pub heading to a corner booth. Michelle steered Loni to one side and then slid into the other. After getting comfy and ordering drinks and some nachos, the silence encroached. Loni tapped her fingers on the table as Michelle watched her carefully.
"You have an advantage here you realize? You get to sit there without having to see the awkwardness I'm feeling."
Loni laughed. "Really? I never thought it of that way. I was thinking the opposite--how you get to sit there and watch me nervously tap on the table thinking what in the hell am I doing here?"
Reaching over and grabbing Loni's hands between her own, Michelle stated, "Living."
After a moment of contemplation, Loni said, "So tell me about yourself. Make me wonder less why I came here with my neighbor who moves me through her music."
Michelle smiled and went on to tell Loni useless tidbits about herself. Chips were ingested and drinks imbibed. Time passed and laughter was heard throughout the pub. Feelings of comfort and familiarity washed over them. The waiter returned with the bill. Michelle snatched it quickly.
"Hey, that's not fair. You're cheating a blind woman," Loni said.
Michelle laughed. "Yep. Much easier that way, thank you very much."
With the bill paid, the women left the pub and strolled arm and arm down the street toward their homes. Standing on the curb in front of Loni's apartment building, Michelle stammered, "Uh?come in and let me play for you. I'd like you to hear what you inspire. I really would like your opinion on the new piece. It would mean a lot to me."
Crossing the street and escorting Loni up the stairs, Michelle led them to her door and unlocked it. Opening the door she reached down quickly and grabbed the feline beast that was trying for an escape. "Not tonight, Fred." She directed Loni into a large overstuffed chair. When the door shut, she released the squirming cat, which tore down the hallway.
Loni snickered while listening to the rustling of Michelle getting set up. As she started settling herself in, Michelle came over and said, "Don't get too settled. You're gonna sit next to me at the piano. I need to get my notes and some water. You need anything?"
"Water would be great. Thanks." Loni realized her body temperature was rising at the thought of sitting next to the woman she had dreamed about for weeks. Feeling warm she stood and removed her cardigan.
Michelle returned and held the water out to her. "Here you go." Loni took the water and Michelle reached for Loni's elbow, moving her over to the bench.
After they were both seated, Michelle put her hand on Loni's thigh and turned and faced her. "Thank you for coming and listening. I can't describe how happy you've made me tonight. I can say without a doubt the last few weeks of being here and taking care of my sister's place have been a total treat. One I'll never forget."
Loni leaned in and kissed her gently. Michelle smiled and then placed her hands on the keyboard. Closing her eyes, she began, letting the sound take her away.
Loni listened intently. The melody began simply, evoking the feel of a Fall day, the sun's heat peeking through an overcast sky with rain falling gently. The mixture created perfection all at once. It felt so complete.
The music ended. Michelle turned on the bench. Watching Loni made her want. They reached for each other. Michelle pulled back. "I need to tell you something."
Loni replied as she reached for Michelle, "No, as you said earlier, live."
They kissed. Michelle helped them both up. "Are you sure about this?"
Loni leaned in and kissed her hard. She moved her hands down Michelle's neck slowly burning a path outside her shirt, over her breasts, down her midsection to her hips. She pulled Michelle in to continue the kiss, her mouth moved steadily kissing and biting her neck.
Breathing heavily, Michelle pulled away and led Loni toward the bedroom. She walked carefully down the long hallway holding Loni's hand while her other one reached for the lights. Flipping them on, she turned and looked into the hazel eyes that had a new look of lust in them. She slowly leaned in and kissed her, whispering, "I hope you know what you're doing."
Loni heard the uncertainty and tenderly placed her hand to Michelle's face while pushing her up against the door frame. "I'd like to think so. Life needs to be lived." Her hand continued to map Michelle's face slowly. "Shhhhh, let this be tonight, let it be the music."
Loni placed her hands on Michelle's stomach. She slid her hands up under her shirt. Hearing the low moan, she continued to pull Michelle's shirt up over her head. She removed each arm, letting the shirt fall to the floor. Then her hands returned to Michelle's body. She let her fingers and hands see Michelle's body completely, needing to feel each pattern and texture.
Her hands traveled across Michelle's stomach feeling the warm flesh all the way up her ribcage sliding along until her fingers reached the cotton bra. She moved slowly up under Michelle's bra feeling the warmth of her breasts and the hardness of her nipples. She tweaked them, causing shivers to race through Michelle's body.
Michelle leaned against the door wondering how she could be doing this. She soon came to terms with the fact that she was and reached out and placed her hand on Loni's face. She felt Loni's ears, neck, cheekbones, lips. Hearing and feeling the warmth from her breath made Michelle quiver. Emotions started to overwhelm her so she said, "Please Loni, the bed...please."
Michelle pulled them to the bed. She sat Loni down. Quickly stripping off the rest of her clothes, she reached for Loni. Loni quietly said, "No, watch me." Loni stood letting her hand roam the warmth of the woman standing next to her.
Letting her hand drop, she stepped back and slowly unbuttoned her shirt. She removed her shirt and bra, eliciting a slight gasp from Michelle. She unbuttoned the top button of her jeans then slid the zipper down. Pushing her underwear and jeans down her legs, she let them fall to the ground.
Carefully she stepped a little to one side and reached for Michelle who quickly grabbed her and moved her to the bed. Loni's body burned her hands as she roamed over the warm, soft flesh. She placed Loni on her back and slowly moved on top of her. Their bodies molded as one leaving Michelle gasping at the feelings that were overwhelming her.
Loni felt Michelle settle, then quickly flipped her over onto her back. She pushed her leg in between Michelle's and felt the wetness. She let her mind race, while her hands roamed across the smooth texture of Michelle's frame. She slowly started kissing and nibbling Michelle's body, while letting her fingers feel each contour of the sculpture beneath her.
"You're so beautiful. I can see you completely." She continued on her journey exploring each of the sections of Michelle. The heavy breathing and the small murmurs of yes were the only things she could decipher from the women underneath her. Her scent mixing with Loni's created a mixture of one.
Loni moved her body down Michelle's like a snake and upon reaching her midsection carefully pushed Michelle's legs apart to make more room. Then her mouth delved into the heat. Her tongue licked along the top of the clit hood while her fingers slid through the wetness. The moans and pleas came faster as Loni gently suckled her clit.
"Yes," pleaded Michelle as Loni continued to besiege her body.
Loni's free hand reached up to caress Michelle's stomach, making its way to her breast. She massaged her breast, then between thumb and forefinger put the nipple under a tight pressure. She kept a steady rhythm with three fingers while her mouth continued to pleasure Michelle. Loni could feel Michelle's orgasm starting. Silence fell as Michelle bucked and pushed up hard up against Loni.
After a few moments, Loni slowed her movements and pulled herself from Michelle. She moved up next to Michelle, stretching along the warm length of her. Loni trailed her hand slowly up Michelle's body, memorizing each contour. As she reached Michelle's cheek she caught the freshly fallen tear drop. "Are you okay?"
Michelle remained quiet for a while then turned her head to look at Loni. "Yes, but I've never...felt that and I want to make you feel that."
She rolled to her side and seeing the smile spread across Loni's face, she leaned up on one elbow and moved in for a kiss. She nudged Loni onto her back and moved her body on top. Feeling the warmth below her and Loni pressing up against her was intoxicating.
Michelle took her time exploring. Her mouth left marks across the tender skin. She made her way down Loni's body, lips and teeth teasing, nails tracing over the marked path. She pinched and massaged along the way, stopping every now and then to enjoy the taste of the flesh she was worshipping.
Loni's breathing became heavy with desire. Her hands encouraged Michelle to continue. She clutched Michelle's shoulders and pulled her body in tighter, pleading with her to keep going.
Michelle looked up and seeing Loni's writhing body and the rise and fall of her chest gave her the confidence she needed to continue on her journey. She felt Loni's thighs shiver as her mouth licked and bit into her depths.
Her tongue and mouth found the hardened clit as her hand caught up with her mouth. They worked closely together, moving along the wet path allowing her tongue to dip into Loni's wetness, thumb rubbing gently over her clit. Loni's moan was deep, her hand placed on the top of Michelle's head encouraging her to continue.
Michelle's mouth pleasured Loni, her fingers slid along teasing her and entering her and gradually feeling the body tense. Loni's body tightened around her fingers, the orgasm sending small tremors throughout the room. The silence was broken only by the sound of heavy breathing. Michelle felt a small tug on her hair. She moved up carefully leaving small kisses along the way.
"Damn," Loni whispered. She pulled Michelle tight on top of her. "Thank you."
"My pleasure." Michelle kissed her lightly.
As she lay calmly with Michelle in her arms, time seemed to slip away. But thoughts of reality soon intruded. "Okay," Loni said. She shifted in the bed, then rose up and started to get out of bed.
Michelle sat up quickly. "You should spend the night."
"No, early day tomorrow for me. My physical trainer will be here at 6. I don't want to be running across the street like a teenager sneaking home around 5:30. It would only make me laugh."
"But laughing looks so good on you," Michelle teased.
Smiling, Loni got dressed. "Well I could tell her I already worked out. But then I'd have to show her my moves and I'm not sure I want to do that."
Michelle threw on a t-shirt and sweatpants and followed Loni down the hall. Loni didn't notice the sleeping cat in the middle of the hall and tripped just as Michelle reached for her.
Upset, Loni reached for the cat. "Oh, Fred, I'm sorry."
"Pfft...I trip over that darn cat daily. He's used to it." Fred scooted by the women in the hall toward the back bedroom. "You're sure you won't spend the night? I really would like it if you stayed."
"No, I need to get home. But you know where I live, come on by whenever you like."
The women left the cozy apartment and walked to the front steps of Loni's building. Michelle wrapped her arms around Loni and gave her a solid kiss. "I won't forget that offer or you. Thank you for a wonderful evening."
Loni smiled and reached up to feel Michelle's face one last time. "My pleasure. Truly."
She slipped quietly into her brownstone while Michelle watched her go. Standing there, viewing the calmness as the street lights shadowed down onto the sidewalk, a feeling of melancholy washed over Michelle. The evening ticked away and she knew that time was coming to a close. She stepped down the stairs back into the light and across the street to join the shadows once more then she slipped into her own brownstone.
The morning came quickly it seemed to Loni, but she smiled through her usual workout. She went shopping with her mom and came home to make herself a early dinner to make certain she would be on the stoop at 6. While eating her rice, she reviewed the previous night and wondered.
Thoughts of future and past all played through her head. No future plans had been given or talked about, however one never knew where the paths would lead. Contemplating matters while pushing the rice around in the bowl, she smiled as memories of the previous night filled her mind and body. Life was full of hope, that she couldn't deny.
Promptly at 6, Loni adjourned to the stoop. The usual neighbors walking their dogs went by. Time moved slowly, she was unsure how long she sat there waiting. Finally realizing the night was taking hold she went back into her apartment. Sullen and cranky, she watched tv until the night slipped away.
Morning came and Loni headed out to grab a fresh bagel from the corner. As she was locking her door, she heard it. She carefully walked to the stairs and upon opening the outside door she instantly knew it was wrong. The music had changed. Living in her space for as long as she had, she knew the neighbors and this, sadly, was not Michelle's playing.
She stopped to accept the reality and took a deep breath. She looked up and remembered. What are we doing? Living life. Loni smiled and continued on her path, wondering where it was all going. She didn't have the answers that was true but she knew for sure a fresh bagel would be had soon. Passing the window of what would always be remembered as a wonderful evening, she let the music float down the street.