Flames by Damien Jeremiah

Thought Habitat Flash Fiction Contest 2020 comes to an end. We saved the best for the last and the best is Flames by Damien Jeremiah.

All doubts sank to the recesses of her mind as the heat between them intensified, and a need she had never known before exploded into raw hunger. Until that moment, she had never realized how much she had feared for him. How much she had needed him. Her legs trembled as his tongue touched her lips, then slipped inside her mouth. A wave of new sensation rushed through her. Yet she did nothing to discourage the intimate way he explored her. Instead, she found herself responding to his every touch.

Somehow, with what was left of her wits, she realized she was clinging to him, as if her life were forfeit. She heard the small, throaty sound she was making. Moan. She felt his entire body shaking and she felt the hard, vital evidence of his manhood pressed against her; she knew where it was leading. And she wanted it.

Her alarm blared. She pulled her pillows over her head.

“I didn’t need you to wake me,” she whispered. Her mind was on the dream. She liked it but it’s bad. That’s how spiritual spouse start. God forbid! She went on her knees and prayed sincerely to God about it. Reynolds’ alarm was normally an hour early than hers. She knew he would be outside. She brushed her teeth and walked out, her skirt swishing on well formed hips.

“Grandpa,” she voiced, “Maybe you should shave,”

“I’m thinking of growing a beard,” he rubs his chin.

“Maybe you should shave,”

“Trees keep you up?” he asked.

“No, it’s the alarm,”

“Lot of clearing in the spring,” he bends slightly to spray water on the hibiscus flowers in the nursery. “I’m worried about the roof with all this heavy snow and ice. The pitch is too shallow in the front. I should have done the roof. I hate roofing,”

“I will get a carpenter,”

“Leave it to Jack of all trade,” he voiced in a jocular tone.

“I will help you,” she said. The idea of being able to climb onto the roof and survey everything was an exciting one.

“But, I do get vertigo, I’ll try,” he said.

“You are not doing it, I’ll get a carpenter,” Jennings said.

“I’ll like some coffee,” Reynolds voiced.

At work, Charlie engaged her with talks, he knows fully well that if he doesn’t act quickly and take advantage of her singleness now, Barry her love may come back and apologize or probably any admirer.

“Will you continue being extremely formal with me?”

“I don’t know what you are talking about,” Jennings pretended not to. Off course, she knows Charlie is nice and had been trying. But it’s too early for them to start anything.

“I was thinking about we spending this free weekend together,”

“Is that what you want?”

“Yeah, it would be fantabulous,”

“Well, none of that will work,” Jennings said. Jennings is normally not a rude person but she knows the best way to say no to some people is to attach some rudeness.

“Why won’t it, there’s no Barry,”

“Charlie, I wish we don’t talk about Barry,”

“I very much don’t want to talk about him either,”

“Thank you,” Jennings voiced.

“Is that a yes too?”

“I wasn’t implying that,”

“Honestly, you have to move on. He has already. A wise man said, ‘we should not bother about who left us…’

“Thanks for reminding me. Excuse me,”

Charlie understands that she needed space and any more word will further infuriate her. He don’t want to kill his plan in a day. Afterall, she will be his someday.

At home, she and Reynolds discussed about presents to buy. They normally go to London to see the rest of their family a week before Christmas. A ritual. And will stay two weeks. Her girlfriends and herself were to hang out that Friday. Reynolds took his van out to get their generator whose engine knocked.

So, as of that time she was alone when she heard a gentle knock on the front door. She knew it couldn’t be grandpa because she could have heard his roaring van’s engine.

She opened the door, and her smile abruptly faded. Barry was standing on the porch, his dark hair tousled as if he had been running his hands through it- or, more likely, some eager woman had rumpled his hair. Judging by the grim expression on his face, the lady’s attention must have been unsatisfactory. Injecting as much ice into her voice as she could, Jennings said scornfully, “what?”

His brows snapped together as she finished her tirade.

“I came to apologize for everything,” he said sounding remorseful.

“Fine,” Jennings said coldly. “You have done it,” she started to shove the door, but he blocked it with his foot.

“Now what?” she demanded.

“The approach wasn’t proper, but I have to please,” before she could react, he caught her shoulders and pulled her towards him.

“Get your hands off me-” she stormed. Then hid mouth swooped down and captured hers in a hard kiss that was easy to resist- until it softened. Shock and anger and an awful twinge of pleasure made her pulse race, but she stayed perfectly still, refusing to give him the satisfaction of struggling or cooperating.

As soon as he released her, Jennings stepped back, her right hand groping for the doorknob. “Is assault a turn on for those bimbos you date?” she demanded, and before he could reply, Jennings gave the door a mighty shove that sent it slamming in his face.

Paralyzed, Jennings stayed where she was until she heard his footsteps fading. Then she slowly turned and leaned limply against the front door. She stared at the carefully chosen accessories she had bought for her living room- a beautiful porcelain vase, and a leather foot stool.

Soon the wind stopped; there was no pinging against the windows, no whooshing against the glass. The world was completely still, as if resting after it’s long battle the night before. She hopped on bare feet to the window because the floor was cold.

She put on her slippers and her bathrobe and opened her bedroom door. From the kitchen she could hear the sound of the refrigerator closing. Reynolds must be back.

“I am making French toast,” he said. “Would you want some coffee?”

“No,” Jennings said. “Didn’t you had dinner before going?” she asked amused.

“You don’t expect dinner to still be in this stomach after the drive,” he joked.

“Let me join. I would want some,”

Two plates and silver ware have been placed on the counter near the gas cylinder. Jennings covered one of the plates with two pieces of the toast. “I don’t know if you will like syrup or not,” she said.

“I wouldn’t mind,” Reynolds said.

The golden tinged toast swims in melted butter. She poured a glass of juice and carried both trays to the dinning room. After a couple of minutes Reynolds followed her after putting off the necessary.

They sat on the chairs. Familial positions. She holds her hair back with one hand as she bends over her plate. She cuts her toast with her fork in a frantic motion, scraping the plate.

“How’s the generator?”

“It’s good now,”

“Charlie wants to take advantage of the fact that Barry and I aren’t together,”

Unconditionally, Reynolds knows everything about her personal life. He was an understanding person sent from heaven.

“Who wouldn’t want to seize the opportunity… After all when one door closes, another opens,”

She laughed aloud.

“No one is seizing me, I just want to have good time with my friends before Christmas,”

“Your choice is my choice,” he said in between bites.

“What do you want for dessert?”

“Chocolates… No, fruits will do,” Reynolds voiced. She gracefully walked over to the refrigerator and took out a small bowl of fruit salad, for Reynolds and chocolate for herself. When she returned, she placed a goodnight kiss on Reynolds’ forehead.

“I will leave you here. I have some writings to do plus I delayed your wake up time with two hours. Please don’t readjust it,” she said with pure concern.

“Oh! Well, goodnight,”

As she walked away she thought of how lucky Charlie was not to find Reynolds at home. No one drags with her in his presence.

Her morning was filled with washing dishes, folding clothes and mopping the floor. They both had cornish hens over rice pilaf, with a side of mixed vegetables and assorted rolls. They were on their way to the stadium. They settled on watching a live basketball match.

“Maybe I should just face facts, suck it up and tell my grandpa I’m resigning,” Jennings uttered aloud to her girlfriends as Tina drove sixty five miles per hour in a residential zone, trying to hurry them there.

“Your grandpa, I guess would hear none of that,” Maya chipped in.

“That’s just it but I seriously can’t handle Charlie at work,”

“Girl, you will find a date,” Stella stated with a positive voice.

Jennings replied in a hesitant tone, “I don’t know. For me, there is not even a prospect,”

“Well, you are not the only one that’s having date problems,” Tina voiced.

“What did Gregor do again?” Maya asked.

Tina answered quickly, “basically, I caught his butt in some lies!”

“What? No girl! Keep talking and get to the juicy stuff,” Stella interjected.

“Stella,” Jennings said as she popped her on the head, “you know that’s messed up!”

“Ouch, that hurts Jennings! Stella replied. “I am just saying what you and Maya are thinking. What’s up with her and Gregor”

“Like I said, before being rudely interrupted, he got caught lying. I don’t have proof, but I think he is messing around on me again. Listen to this, you all. Last night after the game, I wanted him to come over to my house. Mind you, I was all alone and he knew this! Gregor turned me down. Said he had to hang out with the fellas at choppin’s,” Tina said, obviously getting frustrated.

Stella cut in and said, “but you and I was ay choppin’s last night,”

“Yeah,” Tina stated, “that’s my point. Did you see Gregor anywhere?”

“No, but… You never told me to look for him or that he was supposed to be there.”

“Yeah, that’s because I was embarrassed,” Tina blurted out. “When I talked to him this morning, I never mentioned that I was at choppin’s and do you know that chump went on and on about how much fun he had there all night,”

“Men,” Jennings uttered.

Maya said, “you mean boys,”

“I know that’s right,” Tina laughed.

“You know Jennings, I’m glad you didn’t give in to Barry sexually. Let me tell you from my experience, if he left you because he wanted some, then believe me chances are when he would have gotten some, he would have left anyway. And one thing I regret was that my virginity is gone. Having sex with a guy doesn’t make things easier or really better. Trust me, stuffs just get more complicated,” Maya expressed as she chuckled.

“Well, Barry is a past tense,” Jennings vioced.

“That’s harsh,” Tina added and they all laughed. The game was great! Well, except  that she didn’t see the guy her eyes were on. Same person her girlfriends wanted to get for her. Not that she was looking for him or anything.

Yeah right, finally, when she didn’t spot him, she realized that he was probably sitting in the recruiting section again. He regrettably, missed all the action. He was not there. At first she was disappointed, then she realized that fate was not on their side. How would it ever work? She can’t give her whole heart away, if it’s still mending.

Oddly enough, right before the speaker gave her message, he found his way to Jennings. Her friends immediately looked pleased. Maybe they planned it. She didn’t mean to be rude, but it was the only way she knew to ward off her emotion from getting all riled up again.

“Hello ladies, I’m Tyson,” he kindly said them. He seemed a bit nervous. Part of Jennings thought it was cute. Then with confidence, he looked directly at Jennings and asked for her phone number.

“I am sorry, Tyson, but I think it’s better that we not be friends. Casual acquaintances is fine. Therefore, my phone number won’t be necessary,”

At that point, she got kicked on both shins. One by Stella on her left. The other kick was given by Tina on her right.

“Oh, please forgive me,” he conceded reluctantly, ” for being too forward,”

Before Tyson could walk away, Maya stood up with a piece of paper in her hand and insisted, “she was just joking. Here’s her digits. So, feel free to use it… Soon!”

They had a cool last time for that week and year. Happy foursome. They wouldn’t be hanging out till the next year. Everyone will be travelling. News got to Jennings from Stella that Barry was no longer in town. Unfortunately she was still battling with her feelings. On her bad days, he had always find a way to make them bright. She depended on his strength. Maybe that’s why healing seemed hard. If it had not been him that hurted her, she would have been headed straight to him for healing. She have come to the conclusion, though that a part of her will always love him. However, she just accepted the fact that it was what it was and pressed on.

Deep inside her, she didn’t want to rush into another relationship but if Tyson could wait and still press on after she returns from London, she may agree.

Their flight to London was the longest she ever experienced. Extreme anxiousness. Everyone over there was happy to have them. She heard her cousins would arrive the next day. After dinner, her only sibling, Sasha who should be thirteen years or so asked her;

“How is Ukraine like?”

“It’s lovely, grandpa could tell. That’s all I could say. Experiencing it yourself would be better. I had always wanted you to come over…” Jennings voiced.

“Yeah, yeah… I will be right back,”

Sasha knew her dad was softer, so she headed to his bedroom.

“Dad, dad…” she called out and when he answered she said, “Jennings wants me to go with her after everything”

“When is that?” Dion asked

“The day after new year,”

“Have you said yes definitely?”

“What’s wrong? Can’t I go?”

“You are not done with high school yet,”

“So I can’t go?” she asked, her tone immediately challenging. She can go from zero to all out rage in less than five seconds.

“No, you can go,” he said, “you should have asked first is what I’m saying. I might have had other plans. We might have been going somewhere,”

“Dad,” she said, her voice notched up to incredulity, “we never go anywhere,”

The next day. Christmas day. They were having breakfast after morning mass when they heard a knock. Sasha grudgingly walked over to answer whoever was at the door.

“Hi, good morning,” Barry greeted dressed in suit.

“Good morning, you are…”

“I’m Barry, is Jennings in there?”

“Yea, come in,”

The last person Jennings had expected to track her down to London was Barry, even Reynolds was stunned. She dropped her fork and knife down recklessly. Pushed her chair back and stood up.

“Barry, what do you want?” she asked.

“Oh! Well, I’m sorry for walking in here uninvitedly. I’m sorry for hurting you… Would- would you marry me?” he proposed as he dropped on one knee.

Who does that? In her family house. Would that be called confidence or insanity. Everyone was greatly surprised. Surprised Jennings turned over to Reynolds as if he would be the one to answer. Reynolds gave her the affirmative nod she needed. Here was her run away man asking her out. Her dream man. The loving part of her heart was stronger than the unforgiving part.

She accepted him.

Even though they were wedded, Jennings still claimed she didn’t know him with which he laughed. They were in hot passion. Kissing.

Abruptly his mouth opened over hers and he deepened the kiss. It took him less than fifteen seconds to bring Jennings memory into sharp focus, and all her defenses began to crumble. As if her hands had a will of their own, they slipped inside his jacket and slid over his hard chest, curving over his shoulders and around his neck. He lifted his mouth a fraction from hers, his eyes smoldering, his voice thick with desire. “Now do you remember me?”

Jennings realized it was already too late to turn back. He was waiting for an answer, and Jennings nodded, her voice reduced to a soft moan of surrender. YES leaving up on her toes, she crushed her mouth to his. She kissed him back with all the love and desperation in her heart, and his response was shattering.

His mouth became insistent and hungry, his arms wrapped highly around her, holding her against his rigid body, and his hands wandered possessively over her back and the sides of her breasts.

He shoved the door with his foot, and Jennings felt a thrill of nervous excitement, but instead of heightening the passionate exchange, he slowed it down. He kissed her until she was twisted with knots of desire- long, languorous kisses, followed by hard, demanding ones, while his hands explored and caressed her, matching the intensity of each kiss.

Jennings felt his finger at the zipper pf her gown just before he lifted his mouth from hers. He stepped back abruptly to pull of his tuxedo jacket, and the strapless gown slid to the floor at her feet. Automatically, she reached down to pick it up. She was still a virgin. Naivety!

“Don’t,” he said, his gaze lingering on her rosy breasts, his hands swiftly unfastening his shirt. He obviously had no inhibitions about undressing in front of her, but Jennings felt self conscious enough for both of them.

When she turned away to finish undressing, Barry realized simultaneously that she was embarrassed and that her nude body was a miracle of ripe curves, perfect limbs, and glowing skin. He unfastened the studs from his shirt cuffs while he watched her reach up to pull the pins out of her hair.

With her hands raised and her head slightly bent like that, she reminded him forcibly of a painting of a nude that was hanging in the louvre. When the last pin was out, she gave her head a good shake, and her hair tumbled onto her shoulders in a waterfall of reflecting diamond.

She was stunning. She was shy, he reminded himself.

He came up behind her and slid his arms around her, drawing her back against him “YOU ARE TAKING AWAY MY BREATH” she whispered. She shivered red. He turned her around and brought her down onto the bed; then he stretched out beside her and leaned up on his left arm, his hand resting beneath her nape.

Jennings waited with mounting anxiety while his gaze traveled over every curve and hollow of her body. When his gaze lifted to hers again, there was no mistaking the reckless glitter in those heavy- lidded gray eyes. His hand tightened, lifting her face and she braced instinctively for a quick assault. Instead, it was a soft stroking kiss, as feather light and relaxing as the slow stroking of his fingertips against her nape. A very reassuring kiss.

Reassured, Jennings turned into him and kissed him back, and as soon as she did, his right hand slid over shoulder to her breast, cupping it, his thumb slowly circling her nipple. It was a teasing touch, a tantalizing one.

Tantalised, Jennings spread her hand over the solid wall of his chest, sliding her fingers through the short, dark matting of hair. His skin felt like hot satin over steel, his nipple hard and small like small palm kernel as she slightly grazed it with her palm. His arm was bunched muscle, his throat a corded column. Beneath her exploring fingertips, his jaw was chiseled from granite, his cheek carved from bronze. He was magnificent, she realized achingly. And he was hers. The hair at his temple was smooth…

To Jennings those touches were a poignant discovery; to Barry they were caresses so delicate and unexpected that they were profoundly stirring. He lifted his mouth to hers, watching her in tender disbelief while she sent desire pounding through his entire body. Oblivious to the effect she was having on him, Jennings brushed her fingertips over his mouth. His lips were sculpted from a wondrous material that was firm and warm and mobile. His brows were thick and straight; his beautiful eyes were open.

Startled, she looked up at him. His face was hard and dark with passion, a muscle moving spasmodically in his throat. Intermittently. She understood what she saw; she didn’t care how she had caused it. Curving her hand around his nape, she closed her eyes arching against him, and felt the gasp of his breath against her mouth when she kissed him.

His mouth opened over hers, demanding and urgent, his tongue stroking intimately against hers while his hand slid down her body. His fingers tangled in the tiny, springy curls between her thighs and gently gained entry. Jennings writhed beneath the sensual onslaught of fingers stroking deep inside her and the intimate stroking of his tongue against her.

He tore his lips from hers and slid his mouth down her neck to her breasts and by the time he returned to her lips, Jennings was clutching his shoulders, her fingers biting into his back.

His hands cupped her buttocks and pulled her up against him, fitting her to his length, then he drove into her with enough force to make her body arch. Virginity gone! Each slow, demanding thrust pushed her closer to the edge; then without warning he wrapped his arms around her and rolled onto his back, carrying her with him. She stared at him in disbelief, seated on top of him, and Barry chuckled at the startling expression on her face. If she had been anyone else, he would have finished without doing that, but he wanted her to experience as much as hus body would allow before he lost control. At least he told himself himself that was why he was doing it, but some part of his passion- drugged brain, Barry knew his reason was somehow connected to her past.

Reaching up, he threaded his hands through the sides of her hair. “You are exquisite,” he whispered. His hands slid down to her breasts, then reluctantly released them and settled on her hips, helping her to start. She hasn’t been lying about her lack of experience, Barry realized a few minutes later as he suppressed a laughing groan. She had no idea how to guage the tempo for him; she slowed it when he wished she would go faster, changed it when he wanted her to sustain it. He couldn’t predict the next moment or depend on her next movement, and because he couldn’t, she now had him in a sustained state of excited suspense that was more arousing than it would have been if she had known what she was doing.

Just when he decided that, she began to watch his face and adjust to the pressure of his hips, and Barry’s amusement died. The passion he thought he had under control was surging through his loins with enough force to make him grasp her hips to stop her. Pulling her onto his chest, he struggled to stop the rampage, and when he couldn’t he rolled her gently onto her back. He shifted on top of her, his hips pinning her to the bed as he began to thrust deeply, fiercely inside of her. He dragged his mouth roughly across her cheek, longing to imprint himself on her mind as he was embedding himself in her body. “Open your eyes,” he said, his voice reduced to a raw whisper.

Her long russet lashes flickered open. Silently, her eyes begged for release, and silently, he promised it to her. His shoulders and arms rigid with the strain of holding back. He began to increase the force with each stroke.

Barry felt the pulsing beginning deep inside her. It quaked through until it finally exploded in a burst of extravagant pleasure that tore a low whimper from her throat. Barry drove into her one more time, his body shuddering with the same pleasure he had given her. His head fell forward, his breathing labored. Wrapping his arm around her hips, he moved into his side with her.

Jennings lay there, too shaken by what she had felt to think, glorying in the simple thrill of being held in his arms. As sanity slowly returned, however, it became obvious to her that the man who had just made love to her had perfected the act and art. Undoubtedly through a great deal of practice with a great many women. On the other hand, she didn’t think he had found her so completely inexperienced. His hand lazily rubbing the curve of her waist. As a precaution, she decided to say something to him “Barry?”


“I am a very quick learner,” she said earnestly.

Barry tipped his head down to see her beautiful face and his lips quirked in a tender smile. “I noticed that,” he whispered.

“What I mean is, I will get better with practice,”

The bed shook with his laughter as he snatched her into his arms, burying his face in her neck. “God help me,”

Barry’s laughter faded, but his lighthearted mood lingered as he held her against him. Normally an orgasm left him feeling relaxed and then energised.

It didn’t leave him feeling absurdly happy. He could not understand why the woman in his arms had such a profound effect on him in bed and out of it. She could make him hot with a glance, cheer him with a smile, melt him with a touch. She was without greed, vanity or guile. She was also without dinner, he realized. He turned his wrist and looked at his watch. He had wanted her aboard early to see the sunset and the evening was still delightfully young.

He smoothed her heavy hair off her smooth cheek, and she looked up at him. “The evenings entertainment includes dinner and a tour,” he teased.

She gave him a slumberous smile, her long fingers idly spreading on his chest.

“Was that included in the price of the ticket or it’s extra?”

“Don’t look at me like that or you will get something besides dinner and the tour.”

“Really?” she asked. “What?”


To avoid further temptation, he reached for the telephone and instructed that dinner be served in a half hour; then he reluctantly got out of bed.

Well, there it is guys. All participants did give their best and they all deserve a big round of applause. Flames by Damien Jeremiah is a wonderful masterpiece. In the meantime, as we come up with more such contests, please check out some of our other sections too.

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