He enjoyed hanging out with his students during the summer sessions; they were his own age or slightly younger, and it was easy to relax. Most would never write more than a grocery list. Only one, Vanessa, had any true talent. He noticed she wasn’t lounging with the rest of them. Vanessa reminded him of a tiger, beautiful and regal to look at, but dangerous to get too close to.
One of the others, her eyes flirting, asked, “Who would you have sex with from this class if you could?”
He moved away from her. Why did women think that being vulgar was a mark of sexual confidence?
“It would be extremely inappropriate to be intimate with one of my students.”
He reclined on his elbows, letting the sun hit his face.
"But if you could,” she insisted, stalking him, “who would you pick?”
He ignored her and listened to the chattering of the others.
A voice said, “Well, if I had a choice, I’d pick Vanessa.”
He smiled at the thought.
“I think making love to Vanessa would be a terrifying experience, like a praying mantis being devoured by its mate” he said to no one in particular.
He was enjoying the sun when he realized it was suddenly quiet. He felt a body behind his.
An arm wrapped itself around his shoulders as a voice asked quietly, “What makes you think you’re worthy enough to be invited into my bed?”
He opened his eyes; Vanessa was kneeling behind him; if he leaned further back his head would be in her lap. All he could think was, Don’t move, don’t startle her.
He looked into her eyes.
“I’m not,” he said, resting against her thighs, “That’s why it’s terrifying.”
He closed his eyes again, her laughter at his honesty shaking his body.
©2010 VL Sheridan