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Authors: Zuri Day

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BOOK: Body By Night
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When she awoke, it was a little after six, just enough time for her to eat, prepare her clothes for work and head over to Night’s house. Not relying on his promise to take care of everything where her look was concerned, she put on the new workout clothes she’d recently purchased, a pair of denim-look, cotton stretch pants paired with a baby-doll-styled T-shirt sporting blue and white stripes, the vertical kind that were supposed to make her look slimmer. She viewed herself in the mirror.
Yeah, whatever.
Forgoing a lot of makeup she settled for simple mascara and lip gloss, and put her shoulder-length curls back in a ponytail. Looking in the mirror once again, she fought the desire to disparage her appearance.
Sexy is inner confidence.
That’s what one of the women on
Monique’s Fat Chance
had said. She’d try and keep thinking that until she believed it. She looked in the mirror once more and smiled.

Self-pep talk over, she placed her uniform and other essentials for work in a garment bag and stowed her midnight munchies, a bag of fresh veggies—carrots, celery, radish, and red peppers—along with her Lean Cuisine, a bag of popcorn, and sparkling water in an insulated carrier. She took her cell phone off its charger, found her purse between the covers and was off.

 

 

D’Andra hesitantly rang the doorbell. Between her reservations about being anyone’s spokesperson and the images of Night in her erotic dream, she was a nervous wreck. Her face was flushed before the doorbell was answered.

When it opened, a kindly gentleman with graying hair and a humbled spirit greeted her.

“You must be D’Andra. Come in.”

Her relief that Night wasn’t the first person she faced was evident in her greeting.

“Hi,” she gushed, a little too breathy.

The man narrowed his eyes as he looked at her, and then spoke.

“My name is Frank. I’m the photographer. You’re a little early. Night just finished a workout session. He’s in the shower. Come on into the living room where we’re set up.

“My, my, my,” he continued, looking back at D’Andra as he walked. “Night was right, you’re a fine one. We’re going to get some nice pictures here, yes indeedy.”

D’Andra followed Frank into a nicely decorated and decidedly masculine living space bathed in hues of deep blues and browns. A suede navy blue sectional anchored the space on the room’s far wall, while two chocolate brown leather recliners framed a cocktail table made of ebony wood. These colors, along with brighter hues of rust, grays and tans were reflected in the rug and accent pillows placed strategically on furniture around the room. Stainless steel accessories, including lamps and picture frames, furthered the masculine concept as did the abstract black-and-white photos encased in those frames: the clean body lines of abdomens, arms, legs and backs. Frank’s camera equipment was set up in the corner across from the large picture window.

Frank’s sunny personality immediately put D’Andra at ease. As he fiddled with and readied his camera equipment, he kept up a lively monologue. She learned he was a semi-retired photographer who’d been a friend of Night’s family for decades. His photos had landed in several national magazines, including
Jet
,
Ebony
,
Black Enterprise
and
Life
. This job he loved had taken him to dozens of states, several countries in Europe and across the plains of Africa. By the time he was ready to shoot his first roll, D’Andra felt she’d known him a lifetime.

“Okay, doll, just place yourself over by that plant,” Frank said, “and act natural.”

So this is where Night gets that corny word
, she thought, even as she breathed a sigh of relief that the photo session was beginning without Night’s presence.

“Just relax, doll,” Frank said, “and show me those dimples.”

D’Andra walked over to where he had pointed and struck a pose as stiff as wood. She held it and waited.

“Smile for me now, and move those curves around.” Frank clicked a few frames.

D’Andra placed her weight on the other leg, placed a hand on her hip and one behind her head, trying to imitate the girls on
Fat Chance
. It wasn’t working.

“Wait a minute,” Frank said. “We need to get you in the mood.”

He walked over to Night’s entertainment center, which among other things held stereo equipment and a massive collection of CDs. After careful examination, he pulled one out.

“Oh, yes; we’re getting ready to see some sexy now. I want you to feel this music babydoll, and
move!

After a couple seconds of silence, a rock and roll legend blasted out of the stereo speakers.
Oh, Maybellene, why can’t you be true? You’ve started back doing the things you used to do.

Before D’Andra could react to the loud, obnoxious and unexpected blaring, Frank grabbed her hand and began twirling her around the room. Both were agile and light on their feet, surprised at each other’s skills. After one particularly dizzying spin, Frank released D’Andra, grabbed his camera and started barking instructions to the beat of the song.

“D’Andra!” He crooned, interchanging her name with Maybellene. “You are fabulous, you are the cat’s meow, you are the most beautiful woman in the room! Get it, girl. Show me what you’re workin’ with!”

D’Andra twirled and danced and laughed and posed. Frank’s joy was contagious, his words convincing. She was fabulous, beautiful, the cat’s meow. And datgummit, she would show him what she was working with, and then some!

Frank urged her on as the camera flashed. “You keep on like that, doll, and I’m gonna have to sop you up like a biscuit with molasses.”

A freshly-showered Night stood in the hallway, mesmerized, the heated conversation he’d just had with Jazz about dissolving their business partnership forgotten. Who was this confident kitten stirring it up in his living room? Gone was the uncertain, self-deprecating wannabe. In her place danced a poised, self-assured woman who was sexy as hell! He watched as her body, large and in charge, swirled to the sounds as the CD went from
Maybellene
to
Johnny B. Goode
and found himself reacting physically to her low, throaty laugh and coy expressions. No one was more surprised than he. D’Andra’s happiness was contagious, her beauty tangible. Her attractiveness didn’t fit society’s narrow standards, but came from an attribute that could not be bought in a clothing store or at a makeup counter.

D’Andra tossed her head back and laughed, uninhibited and free. The sexy heels she wore with the tight denim pants and baby doll top emphasized her curves in all the right places as well as her well-formed calves. The top dipped to show ample cleavage and when she turned around, baby had enough back to cause a heart attack—juicy and round, prime choice pound for pound. When she placed her hands on her hips and stood with head held high, legs firmly planted beneath her and a look of triumph on her glistening face, Night knew he had his shot.

He sauntered into the room as soon as the flashes stopped and Frank announced, “It’s a wrap.”

D’Andra fairly glowed as she ran over and hugged Frank. “I’ve never had so much fun in my life!” she exclaimed. “Who is that crazy man singing on the CD? He plays a mean guitar.”

Frank halted his actions as if he’d been shot. “Who is it?” He looked at Night. “Did baby doll just ask me who is playing on this here CD?”

“I believe she did,” Night solemnly answered.

D’Andra’s smart comment was swallowed as she noticed Night for the first time.
How long has he been standing there?
she thought.
Did he see me acting crazy?
D’Andra suddenly felt self-conscious and vulnerable. He looked like an African angel, his stark white drawstring pants flowed over his hips like water, tied just below that rock hard sculpted abdomen and inverted navel. He wore no shoes or shirt.

She tried with little success to pull her attention away from what she could have easily mistaken for a chocolate lollipop. How was she supposed to keep her mouth from watering when all she wanted to do was take a lick?

Frank helped her out of her dilemma. “Girl, stop eyeing that boy like he’s a rib slathered in barbeque sauce!”

“I wasn’t,” she said, licking her lips.

Frank chuckled, even as he noticed D’Andra’s discomfort. He took off his glasses and cleaned the lens with a handkerchief.

“Girl, I’d have handled it better if you’d cussed an old man out. To answer your previous question, that’s Chuck Berry, Mr. Rock and Roll himself!”

“Oh, right,” D’Andra mumbled, trying to regain her composure. She wanted nothing more than to glide her hands over the rock-hard chest of the man standing in front of her. Instead she refocused her attention on Frank.

“Thank you, Frank. I don’t like to take pictures, but you made it so much fun.”

“That’s my job, baby doll,” Frank answered. “It’s easy when I have a fine specimen like you in front of the camera.” With a wink, he turned and began placing his camera equipment back in its box.

Night’s eyes scanned D’Andra’s body. D’Andra warmed at his innocent perusal. “You were great,” he said, after a moment.

“You saw me?”

“Yes, I did.”

Their looks lingered on each other for only a moment, one that was charged with unreleased sexual tension that neither of them understood.

“Are you ready—”

“I should go—”

They both spoke at once, and shut up simultaneously.

“I should go,” D’Andra began again, her eyes downcast, her countenance demure. She looked at her watch. “I have to be at work soon and still need to get changed.” Actually, she didn’t have to be at work for two more hours but didn’t trust herself to be alone with Night once Frank left.
And he expects us to exercise one-on-one, with him touching me? D’Andra…what have you gotten yourself into?

Night couldn’t explain the dejection he felt at the thought of her leaving. He wasn’t at all comfortable with the feeling and worked to rid himself of it. “I thought we’d get a chance to work out but all right then. Go on to your job. I’ll see you Thursday, four o’clock sharp.”

D’Andra smiled and shook her head. “Are you always this bossy?”

“Yes,” both Night and Frank answered simultaneously.

“Don’t hold it against him, child,” Frank continued. “Been like this as far back as I can remember, and I’ve known him since he was knee-high to a grass-hopper.”

At D’Andra’s curious expression, Night interjected. “An old southern saying that means since I was young.”

“Oh.” D’Andra enjoyed the obvious camaraderie that existed between Night and Frank, and in an unexpected moment of emotion, she missed the father she never had.

“Well, I’d better go.”

Night walked her to the door. “Thursday, four o’clock, be ready to work out.”

 

 

When Thursday came, D’Andra was more than ready to work up a sweat. She’d been through the wringer on her job, where the employees continued to bare the brunt of higher-ups and their unwise administrative decisions. One of the head nurses had quit, along with a clerk, lab technician and nurse’s aide. D’Andra loved working at Heavenly Haven, but didn’t need the added stress. Fortunately, as a nurse, she could always get a job somewhere else. If things continued the way they were at the nursing home, that’s exactly what she planned to do.

Adding to the stress were the close quarters on the home front, compounded by Cassandra’s frequent male visitors. When home, her mother spent much of her time in her bedroom, and Cassandra entertained her guests upstairs. Unfortunately D’Andra’s “room” was the living room, the room one had to walk through to reach any of the others.

Less than ten minutes after Night answered the door, she was down in his home gym, sweating.

“Okay, you’re going to lie down, place your feet under the roller and then pull the roller up as close to your butt as you can. Like this.” Night pulled the leg weight up to demonstrate the controlled movement, deftly touched his butt with his feet and slowly brought the weight down. “Not like this.” He brought the weight up quickly, using gravitational force instead of muscle to lift the weight. “See the difference?”

D’Andra nodded, even though for her the difference was minimal. Whether his legs moved fast or slow, Night had one of the roundest, tightest, best-shaped pair of buttocks she’d ever seen. His legs were sculptured works of art, his back a dazzling display of sinewy, rippling muscles. She could have watched him work out all day. But Night had other plans.

“Okay, your turn.”

D’Andra was self-conscious as she lay face down on the bench of the leg curl machine. After ogling Night’s perfect physique she was more than a little self-conscious of sticking her large gluteus maximus in the air. She did it anyway, reasoning that she didn’t have time to be shy when it came to her personal trainer. She was with Night for one reason and one reason only, to lose weight. The more she stayed focused on this and the less she focused on his ass-ets, the better off they’d both be. Sure, Night often flirted. But D’Andra knew he viewed it as harmless fun.

“Are you going to lay there daydreaming all day, or are you going to try and work these leg muscles?” Night’s question was pointed but not said unkindly.

“I’m sorry,” D’Andra answered. She slowly curled her legs into the air and towards her butt.

Night studied D’Andra’s execution and her “apple” as well. For all of her excess weight, she could still make an outfit look good. Her body’s curves were in all the right places and he guessed that more men than she knew had appreciated the view as she walked past. Night was experiencing this same appreciation as D’Andra raised and lowered the cushioned bar slowly, mimicking Night’s movements and, as he’d instructed, keeping a tight hold on the hand grips.

“Stay focused,” Night said, even as he tried to stay focused on D’Andra’s leg movements and not the large, luscious booty that tightened with each lift. “You’re almost finished, just one more set of ten. Then we’ll turn over and work on your quads.”

BOOK: Body By Night
2.77Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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