Sam’s fingernails trailed lightly down my spine and I smiled and tried to keep still. I could feel her, lying next to me, her hot breath on my shoulder. She smelled like honey blossom and… Sam. I couldn’t distinguish every scent that made her up, but I loved every single one of them.
“What are you thinking about?” She murmured, kissing my shoulder gently. I closed my eyes and smiled, biting my lip before turning my head on the pillow to face her.
“How much I love you.”
She blushed and grinned, embarrassed.
“Oh yes?” She snaked her arm over me and pulled me to her, biting her lip at my giggling. “And how much exactly is that?”
I smiled and shook my head then leaned in to kiss her gently. She stroked my face and sighed contentedly. It made me chuckle softly, and I rested my head on her chest, trailing my fingers against her skin.
“What did you get up to while I was working hard for a living?” Sam asked after a few precious moments like this.
“Oh yes, flirting with artists to get them to give you there work is hard work…” I teased.
“Hey…” She complained and I threw her a cheeky grin. “I’ll have you know some of them require an intense amount of flirting.”
“Just how much flirting are we talking about?” I raised an eyebrow, a bubbling jealousy rising in my throat.
“Oh, one of them I actually had to seduce. I mean we’re talking at least ten minutes on how much I liked his tie…” She replied and I laughed, all anxiety gone.
“Sounds like gruelling stuff.”
“It was.” She chuckled. “So come on, tell me. Have you been doing any flirting while you were here, all on your own?”
“Oh yeah, of course. How do you think we landed the audition?” I joked.
“Ah of course. The lovely Lady Lush.”
“Yes.” I smiled. “And, let’s see… I spent a lot of time trapped by Myra in her studio.”
“Ah the famous photographs. You know she’s emailing them to me so I can get a preview?”
“I hope she thought I did good.”
“Apparently she’s never had a model sit so still.”
“I was thinking.” I defended myself.
“Well I’m glad that I have a positive effect on you.”
“Generally, yes.” I smiled and sat up, looking back at her.
“And where are you going?”
“I thought breakfast might be in order.”
“Mmm, breakfast. I have to say, I missed your cooking while I was away.”
“Well a bacon sandwich is about all I can make you at the moment.”
“That’ll do just fine. You going to put some clothes on or…?” She grinned, looking at my bare skin like she looks at her art work. It made my stomach heat automatically, and I bit my lip.
“Why? You want a show?” I joked.
“Maybe.” She teased, sitting up and grabbing my hand to pull me back to her. I almost fell in to her, but she held me up until I supported myself. “But I think for now, I’ll just settle for another taste of you.”
I giggled and she bit her lip, stroking her fingers through my hair before she reached in and kissed me softly. I grinned against her lips, feeling her thumb trail over my ear. Her teeth caught my bottom lip gently and I smiled as she gently laid me down, clambering over me. She played over my neck for a long time, kissing it and running her tongue lightly over sensitive areas.
“Sam…” I groaned. She began to move over my chest to my breasts and then back to my collar bone. My breathing had switched to a more erratic pattern as I tried to keep calm when most of me was exploding in fire. She moved down my arm to my fingertips and gently kissed the pads of each finger. Then she began making her way back up my-
“What are these?” She asked and I was torn from my warmth as she pointed to the slight bruising that still existed from my blood test.
“Ok, they’re from a blood test. Don’t stop.”
“A blood test for what?” She asked. I groaned, my mood shattered, and a deeper, darker part of me realised that I would have to lie to her now.
“Just to check on some stuff. Anna thought I was ill, turns out it was nothing.”
“Why would she think you were ill?”
“I lost my appetite and was going to the toilet a lot, plus there was the cramping and stuff. So she made me go.”
“I told you. Nothing. Just because of my change in the amount of exercise, and diet etc. Boring stuff.”
“Ok. If you’re sure.”
“I’m sure.” I lied completing the giant lie that was hurting me so much, and would hurt her when she found out too.
“Alright then.” She smiled and leaned forward to kiss me. I pulled away and clambered out of her grasp and off the bed. She sat up, surprised, as I grabbed a t-shirt and some pants and pulled them on. “Where are you going?”
“Breakfast, remember?” I said, rolling my eyes. I left the bedroom and went to the kitchen, getting the ingredients out of the fridge and turning the hob on. I heard Sam emerge after a while and sit down at the island behind me.
“What’s up with you?” She asked after what seemed an eternity of silence and spitting oil.
“You ruined the mood.” I replied, turning the bacon.
“I was concerned.”
“Yeah, well, all I could think of was the needle when you mentioned it.”
“Yeah well…” I sighed and shook my head. I hated lying to her. More than anything I wanted to tell her, to cry in to her shoulder about it. But I wanted her birthday to be worry free, and she’d only just returned to me. “It doesn’t matter. We’ll eat and then maybe Myra’s pictures will have come through.”
“I hope so.” She replied, having obviously decided to drop the needle subject. “I’ve heard you look amazing. But then I told her you always do.” I threw her a smile and continued focussing on the bacon. “So any more news you want to tell me?”
“Anna’s going to America with Megan.” I remembered and told her.
“That should be a nice holiday. Getting serious aren’t they? What’s it been? A month?”
“And a half. And it’s not for a holiday. Anna’s been offered a year study abroad. Although goodness why a psychology student needs that.” I added as an afterthought that was more of a mutter to myself.
“…Wow. So they’re going out for a year, and they’ve only been together… well I bet it’ll be a good experience for the pair of them. How are you coping with it?”
“What are you, my therapist?” I asked, although mercifully it came out jokingly instead of harshly. “I don’t know,” I sighed. “I guess I’m surprised. I mean, I didn’t realise it was even an option. And it’s so last minute. I’m going to miss her a lot, especially since we just started being proper friends again, but it’s an amazing opportunity and she’d be stupid not to take it…” I trailed off because I was crying. Sam’s arms wrapped around my waist and I started; I hadn’t even heard her come up behind me. I dropped the turner and turned in to her arms, bawling my eyes out.
“Oh Cara…” She stroked my hair and kissed my head. “If your friendship survived everything you two have already been through, it’ll survive a year away. It’s only a year, it’ll fly by.”
I just continued to cry in to her until she had to sit me down and see to the bacon. She made up our sandwiches and plated them up, then kissed me softly and murmured reassurances to me until I stopped crying and managed to eat.
“You can throw her a big going away party.” Sam suggested. “And give her a photo album of all your favourite memories.”
“That’s a good idea.” I sniffed.
“Knew there was a reason you kept me around.” She winked and I laughed.
“I think it’s a little more than that.”