Read The Sex Whisperer: Book 1 in the Whisperer Trilogy Online
Authors: Sadie Rabbit
“That’ll be the day,” Mike said.
Charlotte drew her head back sharply. “This is a huge night for your wife. Why don’t you go get another drink and loosen up?”
Why don’t you get a drink and mind your own business?” Mike said. “I can say whatever the hell I want when my wife’s taking trashy photos like this.”
Olivia clamped her teeth together. She felt like
someone had sucker-punched her. Part of her struggled to breath; the other part wanted to hurt Mike — kick him in the groin or stomp on one of his toes with her heel. Kenneth appeared out of nowhere. He had a firm grip on Mike’s arm, and he pulled him toward the bar. Kenneth, she knew, wouldn’t tolerate anyone talking badly to Charlotte — even one of his closest friends.
Charlotte grabbed Olivia’s arm and pulled her toward the
restrooms. “What an asshole,” she said. “I don’t want to you listen to a goddamn thing he says about your work again.”
Inside the bathroom, the lights flickered on slowly.
Charlotte pulled Olivia to her and gave her a firm hug. Olivia didn’t feel anything at first, but she couldn’t keep her emotions stamped down. She started to cry; not just a quiet cry, but deep, soul-wrenching sobs.
Her sense of time disappeared.
At one point, she realized she was sitting on the floor, the tile cold beneath her. It should have grossed her out, but she felt removed from it. And then Charlotte was pulling her to her feet stuffing tissues in her hand. Guests poured into the gallery now. They sounded like an invading army.
“Hush now,” Charlotte said. “You’ve got some adoring fans to greet. Thank God for these masks.”
Olivia took hers off and looked at herself in the mirror. She hardly recognized the reflection staring back at her. It was puffy, red and streaked with mascara.
I look like a gargoyle.
Charlotte rubbed at her mascara with a moist paper towel, then pulled out a makeup kit.
“We’ll talk about this later,” Charlotte said.
She touched up Olivia’s eyeliner, lipstick and base. “Right now, though, think of it as your coming out party. You work really is incredible, and I’m not just saying that because I know you. I think you’ve broken through some wall or something. You’re not just taking photos anymore; you’re making art. I can see that, and I’m a freaking communications major. Let’s just enjoy this moment, okay?”
Olivia couldn’t have found Mike in the gallery if she wanted to. People were everywhere, all with glasses of wine and flashlights in their hands. Beams of light streaked wildly across the floor, walls and windows. Olivia stood stock still, alone for a moment trying to drink it all in. She’d always wondered what it would be like to have a gallery full of people buzzing about her work.
She should have been overjoyed.
Instead, she was heavy with insecurities brought on by Mike.
If people don’t want to hang my art on their walls, is it really art? Are these people here because of the masks and free booze? Does anyone truly get what I’m saying with my photos?
Klaus understood her work
, she knew that much. Hope got it, and Charlotte, too.
Maybe Thomas would get it.
Olivia’s stomach flip-flopped at the thought of Thomas. She didn’t know anything about him
, and here she was fighting with her husband and thinking about a sex whisperer. Worse than that, she was imagining Thomas was one of the few people in the world who could understand her work.
“Olivia, is that you?” a young, masked woman asked.
She nodded yes, and watched the woman pull up her mask. In the dim light, Olivia could see it was Isabelle — her assistant from Wright State.
I should have recognized that gravelly voice!
Isabelle said. “Colin already called his parents to see if he could buy two prints. I’m buying one, and I think Aubrey is, too.”
“Wow,” Olivia said. “That’s four more prints than I’ve ever sold at a gallery.”
They both laughed.
“You’ve got to tell Klaus that I told him to give you a discount,” Olivia said. “Sixty percent, that’s my cut. You have him mark it down that much, ok
Isabelle could respond, someone else was tugging at Olivia’s arm, pulling her away, another female asking the same thing: “Olivia, is that you?”
Critics from the Dayton Daily and the City Paper cornered her halfway through the night. They asked for five minutes outside, and Olivia was happy for a break from the crush of people in the gallery.
Under the yellow haze of the streetlights, the three of the
m stood huddled, masks pushed up resting on the tops of their heads. It was muggy, and strands of Olivia’s hair stuck to her forehead. The reporters started with softballs.
How did she get the idea for the show? Where were the photos taken?
“What do you hope people take from the show?” the City Paper reporter asked.
“I hope they take home a photograph,” Olivia said, laughing. “I don’t want to describe my work for someone else because viewing any artwork is a unique experience. I
hope these photos force people to think about lies they may be telling themselves, though. I think we all deceive ourselves in some way, and most of the time that’s good for us. If there are things we’re working really hard to bury, though — things we’re trying to ignore and put off, those have a way of eating up our energy. I tried to take a lot of those things on in this show, and maybe it’ll help inspire other people to take on their own self-deceptions.”
The reporters scribbled away, their noses nearly
touching their notebooks. Olivia looked back toward the gallery and saw a flash of movement. Someone was watching them. Whoever it was slipped behind a semi-trailer.
It was a man,
Olivia thought, and she was sure he was wearing a white mask from the gallery.
It was Thomas
. Somehow, Olivia knew it in her bones.
“Excuse me,” she said. “I should get back to the show now.”
She handed both of them a card. “My cell number’s on the back if you have any follow-up questions.”
The reporters turned back to their notebooks, and Olivia headed toward the trailer. As she got closer, she could feel her heartbeat
quicken in her chest.
What am I doing?
I should be going the other direction if I think it’s Thomas. It must have been a stranger.
Perhaps. There was something odd about the way the man
was watching her, though. It was like he wanted to be seen, like he wanted to draw her to him.
took a deep breath. The air smelled heavy and damp, thick with the promise of rain. She rounded the corner of the trailer. When she did, she caught a glimpse of the man rounding the corner of another trailer. Olivia stepped onto the gravel to follow him.
, you’re really being stupid.
She forged ahead anyway. When she turned the second corner, she saw a masked man leaning casually against a trailer. He was waiting for her.
“Olivia,” he said.
She recognized his voice immediately. It was Thomas.
“You promised you’d stay away,” she said.
“I know,” he said. “But when I read about the masks, I thought you’d never know if I came. And then … just hear me out. I saw your work, and I saw you talking to the reporters and all the people here, and wow, Olivia. I just wanted to say congratulations. This is really amazing, and your work is really amazing. It’s got to be, right? I haven’t seen a gallery opening this big in Dayton since, well, I don’t think there’s ever been one this big. It’s not even Urban Nights or First Friday, and there’s got to be at least 200 people here.”
He sounded genuinely impressed.
“Thank you,” Olivia said, looking down at the gravel between them. Here was a man who was practically a stranger saying all the things her husband should have been saying. “Do you have to say all that with your mask on?”
Thomas smiled. He reached up slowly, paused, and then pulled off the mask and turned to look her directly in the eyes.
She drank in Thomas’s features. He was a work of art. Like an older and more weathered version of Colin. His features were delicate, his hair ruffled and his beard not much more than a five o’clock shadow. Mostly it was his eyes, though. They seemed to lap her up like water. Olivia felt like she could stand there forever, staring into those eyes.
“I’ve already taken up more of your time than I should have,” Thomas said. “Go on.”
He nodded his head in the direction of the gallery.
Olivia turned to look back toward the street. When she turned back to Thomas, he was already walking off. Part of her imagined running after him, grabbing his hand and l
eaving; two screwed up artists setting out to change the world. Instead, she turned back to the gallery and walked alone into the sea of masks. She felt better then; much better.
At midnight, the black lights flicked off and the fluorescents flickered on. The crowds thinned out slowly, a sea of red-faced men and women heading for the door, all of them happy courtesy of the free wine, the carnival of masks and the rather lascivious photographs they’d seen.
Klaus pulled Olivia past the curtain and into the private storage room.
“Two bits of news I have for you,” he said. “Both of them good, I think. Firstly, we sold more than 45 prints.”
, that’s incredible,” Olivia said.
“I think rather that’s an indication of the quality of your work,” he said. “You plumbed the depths, young lady, and you came back to the surface with proof of your journey.”
I love the way he talks.
Sometimes, Olivia thought she’d like to pay Klaus to come to her house and make up bedtime stories for her before she fell asleep.
“The number of sales are
unprecedented,” Klaus said. “Our landlord will be most pleased. I think you’ve helped us pay our rent for the next six months, God-willing. The other bit of news is just as good, maybe better. There was a representative here from the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center. She carried a red purse and had a boy half her age on her arm. I thought it was her son until I saw him squeeze her buttocks like a melon. That’s unimportant, though, forgive me. She said she’d like very much to show your work this winter.”
Olivia the woman’s card.
“She had some interesting ideas on extending your theme,” he said. “I think it would be a most excellent move, most excellent indeed, for you to call her quickly.”
“Tonight?” Olivia asked.
“No, no, no!” Klaus said, laughing. “Call her next week. She’ll help you open more doors than lowly old Klaus ever could.”
Olivia smiled. “Klaus helped me open the first door,” she said, “and that’s the most important door of all.”
She kissed the grizzly old Russian on the cheek,
and then looked down at the card. The woman from the Cincinnati Contemporary Arts Center was also named Olivia — and she has a penchant for younger men; men like Colin.
Maybe that’s why she liked my show so much,
Olivia thought, a faint smile blossoming on her lips.
It doesn’t matter, though. The CAC wants to show my work!
She was so happy she could squeal.
It was wonderful to stand in front of you last night, talking face-to-face. You looked exquisite in your photograph, b
ut it couldn’t have prepared me for how you look in person. Your work was incredible, too, and I’m sincerely flattered that you took inspiration from one of my whispers.
Speaking of whispers, I know you weren’t expecting another until your return from Hawaii. I couldn’t help myself, though. I’ve put one together that you’re welcome to listen to at your leisure. I think it says more than I ever could by email.
Your Faithful Servant,
I can’t help but think you left me a sign at the restaurant,
the recording begins. Thomas’s voice cascaded out of the speakers like water sluicing down a mountain stream.
After you left the table,
he went on, I snuck out from my hiding spot and saw you’d left a flier. It was for your upcoming gallery opening. I stuffed it in my pocket and left in a hurry.
The night of your opening, I press my nicest suit, starch the collar of an Oxford and don a
simple silver tie. I arrive early and watch you from across the gallery. You’re cordial with your husband, almost like it’s a duty that must be endured. I study your work in the frames on the wall. Something about them speaks to me. It’s as if they’re snapshots stolen from my subconscious.
After two glasses of wine, I’ve worked up the courage to approach. I want to shake your hand, to feel the touch of your skin. As I approach, though, you’re pulled away by two reporters.
I follow the three of you outside, trailing at a leisurely pace. I watch your shape moving gracefully in a tight black and white dress in front of me. In an instant, I’m remembering your taste, the way your body shakes and arches when you come. Just seeing your calves are enough to give me a hard-on, and indeed, I have to look away before one forms inside my pants.
I watch you from behind a trailer. In the back of my mind, I hope you’ll look in my direction, break away from the reporters and
come to me. I want you so badly. I’d take you here, hidden behind the wheels of a truck, naked against it, standing in the gravel. I’ve never felt true desire. But I have it with you. There’s something primal in me, urging me to seek you out, to hold you tightly, to finish inside you.
Finally, you glance in my direction. I can tell you’ve registered who I am — or at the very least, realized I’m not a stranger. My heart beats rapidly in my chest. I slip away behind a trailer and
start counting the seconds. I close my eyes and imagine holding you again — not under a table this time, but hugging your entire body to my chest, sinking myself deeply inside of you, all the way, as deep as I can possibly go. I
you to follow me, and somehow, magically, you appear.
I slip behind a second trailer, and I hear your footsteps coming after me. I stand between several trailers now. The lot is deserted and there’s no direct view of the street. No windows from the lofts can see us here. If you come to me, we’ll be in the very heart of the city, surrounded by thousands of people, cars, and voices, and yet, utterly alone in our desire for one another.
When you round the corner, I motion for you to be quiet. I grab your face with both of my hands, kiss you; first on the mouth, then the neck. I kiss your eyelids, your shoulder, the tops of your breasts. You grab my hair and pull my head up higher. Then, you’re kissing me back aggressively.
“I can’t quit thinking about kissing you at the restaurant,” I whisper. “I think about your legs, your thighs, your sex.”
“I never got to thank you for that,” you whisper. “Perhaps I should return the favor?”
You break away from kissing me
and crouch down in front of me. Your hands work quickly on my belt buckle and zipper as if you can’t wait to take me in your mouth. With my pants unzipped, you reach into the opening in my boxers and pull out my cock. Then, you reach back in and tug out my balls. It’s strange to see them under the streetlights.
I watch as you cup my cock in your hands and gently kiss the head. Then, you reach down and tug on my balls, pulling them closer to your mouth. You lick them while your other hand slowly massages the base of my cock. Streaks of pleasure shoot down my thighs and up into my stomach. I push my hips forward so that my balls are closer to your mouth.
I love looking down and seeing your hands on my cock. When you’re done with my balls, you stroke me with both hands. One hand grips the base of my cock, holding a thick fold of my scrotum skin, and the other is gripping further up my shaft, near the head. Then, you pull my cock downward, toward your mouth, and slip it inside. The breath catches in my throat, and my cock twitches violently as you suck. I can’t help but let out a deep, low moan. Seeing your lips stretched wide around the head of my cock makes me even harder. I can see veins sticking out in my shaft that I’ve never noticed before.
You’re stroking me faster and harder now, and I
want to touch you. I reach down into your blouse and press my hand inside your bra. I’m surprised again by the size of your breasts and how soft your nipples are. As I massage them, your nipples grow thicker, harder. And the feel of them in my hands make me want you more. I thrust my hips forward so my cock goes deeper into your mouth.
“Suck it,” I whisper down to you. “Suck my cock.” I don’t even know if you like when I talk dirty to you, but I can’t help it. “You love sucking
my cock, don’t you? You want me, you need me to come all over you.”
You let out a moan and
suck harder. You grip me harder with your hands. You’re squeezing so hard it feels like my circulation is getting cut off. Indeed, when I look down, I can see my shaft is turning a deep shade of purple. When the head of my cock pops out of your mouth, it’s glistening, pulsing quickly and almost imperceptibly with each beat of my heart.
“Keep sucking,” I say.
seem to like hearing me talk dirty to you, so I keep doing it.
“Suck it,” I say, “suck my big
, thick cock. Suck everything out of me. Suck out my come.”
Your hands are moving so fast now they look like a blur, and I thrust myself even further toward you, up onto the balls of my feet. You let go of my cock with one hand and reach behind me to squeeze my ass.
“I’m going to come,” I say, louder than I’d intended. “Oh God, I’m going to come.”
Hearing that, you stand up and turn me around so that my back is to you. You guide my hands onto the trailer door, and you reach around me to stroke me from behind with both hands.
“Come, baby,” you say into my ear. “I want you to come hard. I want you to come harder than you’ve ever come before. Imagine I’m on my hands and knees in front of you.”
I picture your ass in the air in front of me. I imagine squeezing your cheeks apart so that I can guide myself inside your sex. It’s too much for me. I reach down to put my hands on top of yours so I can help you squeeze my cock even harder.
“Pinch the head of my cock,” I say to you.
You free one hand use it to pinch my moist head hard between your finger and your thumb. The
sensation is overwhelming, and I have to hold my breath to keep from crying out. Just as I’m about to come, you stop.
I turn around and kiss you roughly. You break away after just a few moments.
“I’ve got to get back to the show,” you say. “I want you, though. I want to be naked with you, not hiding in some parking lot.”
“I was almost finished,” I say.
“You can’t leave me like this.”
t’ll give you a reason to think about me,” you say. “Call me. You have my number now.”
I watch you as you walk off smiling. I’m half-dazed
, needing you with an urgency I’ve never felt, my manhood throbbing between my legs.
I think to myself.
And I don’t ever want you to leave my side, even if you are a tease.