The snapping became a joke between then and their conversation lightened over the next few days. A big storm was being predicted in their area in the coming days so regular plans changed to preparation and potential damage control. The storm hit on a Monday night. A hurricane combined with a nor’easter dumping excessive rain and damaging winds across the state. Widespread power outages were reported as well as major flooding and tree and debris damage. The store luckily did not lose power, and served as a haven for employees and customers. Jasper’s apartment was also spared. Emily, however, was without power for 4 days. There was also a major gas shortage in the area and on the second day of the outage, Emily did not think she was going to have enough gas to get home and back to work. She bought a few things at the store preparing to sleep in her car that night. “What do you need all that for?” Jasper asked. “I don’t have enough gas. I need to stay here.” Emily said quietly. He looked at her a moment “Come stay at my place.” He blurted quickly. He looked as surprised as she did at the offer. “No thank you. I will be fine” she said. “Emily, it’s okay. I had a couple of my friends over last night. I have heat and light and hot water.” She thought a minute, it had been a few days since she was able to take a hot shower. It was tempting. ” I appreciate it Mr. Marquez, but I will be ok.” She answered. “Ok, Kiddo.” He responded with the nickname he knew she hated.
Later that night after she closed the store, Emily got into her car and wrapped the blankets she had bought around her. About an hour went by and she was still too cold to sleep so she opened the foot Warmers she bought and slipped them into her socks. Shivering she tried to settle down to sleep, when she noticed headlights slowly coming towards her. I hope it’s not cops. She thought. She was too cold to unwrap herself completely so she started to fish for her ID as the figure moved towards her. The knock on the window caused her to open her door since she didn’t want to turn on the car battery. Standing there in a warm jacket and tight jeans was Jasper. With a hot cup of coffee. “Emily. It’s freezing. You gotta come with me. This isn’t negotiable. ” he said harshly and stared her right in the eye. She was shivering so bad she could hardly talk so she just nodded. She grabbed her bag and got into the passenger seat of his car. It was warm. She started getting feeling back into her toes and fingers on the short drive to his apartment. When they got there he grabbed her bag so she could keep the blankets around her and lead her to his door. When she entered she just stood there, unsure. This was a very awkward situation and she didn’t know what to do with herself. He put her bag down and told her to sit. He cranked the heat and gave her a towel and pair of sweats. ” Go shower and change into this. It’s warmer. Bathrooms at the end of the hall” taking his orders she went and changed. She wasn’t used to being told what to do but there was something about his tone. She wasn’t going to mess with him. When she came back into the living room he handed her some tea since she already finished the coffee he brought her. She was warming up quicker and the last bit of warm liquid down her throat to her belly did the trick. She finally spoke. ” thank you. I’m sorry.” ” don’t be” he said. ” it’s not a big deal.” He went on. This time quieter and eyes to the floor. ” you should get some sleep. Go sleep in the bedroom.” She looked up quickly surprised. “I’m sleeping here. ” he said touching the couch. ” oh. It’s ok I can sleep here. I’m already imposing I’m not taking your bed too.” She said chuckling. There was something that stirred in him when she said the words your bed. But he shrugged it off. ” Emily. Go to bed.” He said sternly. “Yes sir .” She saluted. Trying to make light of the situation. She got up from the couch and grabbed her bag. Her still damp hair tumbling down her back. He never noticed how long it was. She always wore it up. The back of the sweatpants sagged slightly and it gave him a glimpse of her black lace panties as she walked down the hall. ” good night.” She said before she closed the door. ” good night” he strained as he fought the stirring feeling in his belly once more. You perv he thought.
Emily was able to keep her cool until she closed the door behind her. Letting her back slump against it slightly she let out a breath. Why am I so nervous? She thought. He’s being nice. Generous. Kind. There’s nothing weird going on. She calmed and then felt a strange feeling of regret. Wouldn’t be the worst thing… She thought.
Emily put her bag down next to the bedside table. Resisted the urge to look into the drawer. She removed the sweat pants and entered his bed. She tucked the soft linen around herself and laid her head down on his pillow. It smelled of him. That masculine medley of soap, cologne, hair product and sweat. She felt the wetness beginning between her thighs and tried to ignore it. What was wrong with her? She’s laying in her boss’s bed alone. He is on the couch in the other room. The only reason this is happening is because he didn’t want her to freeze to death in her car. Prior to this night they had an estranged professional relationship at best. And beyond appreciating his physical appearance, no further thoughts had crossed her mind. Until now. She turned onto her side and the smell from his pillow clouded her nostrils, and her thoughts. The moist spot in her panties was becoming harder to ignore. She glanced at the door, slightly regretting that she didn’t lock it. But she couldn’t lock him out of his own room. She assumed she was in the clear, he wouldn’t dare come in while she was sleeping. She began to touch herself. She’d become a pro after years of unsatisfying encounters with Rick. All thoughts of Rick left her mind as she imagined Jasper touching her where her own fingers wandered. His eyes meeting hers as he would toy with her soft flesh, teasing her until he would-
Jasper laid on the couch in the dark. He rarely slept here. He knew his back would hate him in the morning. Damn I’m getting old. He thought. He closed his eyes, tried to block out the look in Emily’s eyes when he saw her in the parking lot. He couldn’t fall asleep knowing she was out there. He drove there half expecting her not to be there. When he arrived he saw her shivering. She listened to everything he said without a fight. So unlike her normal personality. Or at least how she was at the store. He felt this strange sense of obligation for get safety. He couldn’t shake it. Now as he laid alone in the dark, he couldn’t help but think it was all a big mistake. Seeing his tough, take no shit, assistant so helpless, needing him. Seeing her sit on his couch, in his clothes, wet and warm from a shower. It messed with him. He felt the stirring in his gut as he started to stiffen. Not now. He thought. He tried to will it away and was almost successful when he heard what he thought was a soft whimper from his bedroom. He froze and listened. He heard it again, slightly higher pitched this time. Was she crying? He thought. Suddenly alarmed, jasper got up and walked over to his bedroom door. He grabbed the handle but stopped himself. He decided to knock, quietly. There was no answer. The quiet whimpers continued. He was worried for her. His curiosity and fear propelled him to open the door. He stood in the doorway frozen like a statue. She wasn’t crying. Her eyes were closed. Her breathing slightly heavy. She was biting softy on her bottom lip. His gaze left her face and traveled down as he noticed movement under the sheets. The final realization of the situation he stumbled upon sent fire down his body. She was pleasuring herself, in his bed, and she didn’t even know he was there. Only seconds passed before her eyelids shot open and a look of pure horror and embarrassment covered her face. “I…um…I” she stammered unable to come up with a reasonable explanation. He just stood there. Her embarrassment quickly took the form of anger. ” why didn’t you knock?” She said accusingly. ” I did.” He whispered. “I guess you didn’t hear me. I thought you were crying. I’m sorry.” He started rambling then started to back away. He turned against the light and she noticed his outline straining against his flannel pants. His tank vacuumed to his well formed chest and stomach. His dark hair ruffled. She watched him walk into the hall and close the door behind him. She resisted the urge to get up after him and finish the job. She laid there trying to get her breathing back to normal. She waited a few minutes. She heard nothing from the other room. Even as worked up as she was, seeing his primal reaction to her in his bed was validation enough for her to calm and fall asleep.
But jasper didn’t not sleep a wink that night. Painfully ignoring the rock formation between his legs. Trying to forget how she looked in the throws of her self made ecstasy. This was a terrible idea. He thought. There was only 2 ways this night would end. He would storm back in his room and take her in ways they might both regret , or they can be awkward with each other and avoid eye contact in the coming weeks.
As the morning light crept throw his window jasper stirred. He must have finally dozed off. He heard the shower running and figured the coast was clear to enter his room and grab some clothes. She had made the bed. Something he may have done twice since he had lived there. The sweats he had lent her folded neatly at the edge of the bed. Her bag was open. As he walked closer he couldnt see the black lace he was looking for. He shook off the kindling in his groin and grabbed his clothes. He heard the water stop. He rushed to leave the room and almost bumped into her. Her wet hair messily up in a rubber band, the beads of wetness on her collarbone. “Sorry” she muttered. This time it was Emily who avoided eye contact and she clutched the towel close and moved past him into the room. She stood there with her back to him just long enough for him to watch a droplet of water leave one of her dark curls and start its journey down her spine. It made it to the edge of the towel and then disappeared to the valley beneath.
It was more than he could bear. He quickly went to the bathroom and turned on the water. Colder than usual but that’s what was called for. He realized he couldn’t deny himself twice in a day and finished himself off quickly all the while thinking of the image of her last night that would be forever etched in his memory.
Fuck. Emily thought. Now what? Besides going down as my most embarrassing moment of a lifetime. She got her things together and thought, what the hell, might as well go the whole nine. She took the black lace panties she was wearing the night before, spritzed them with her perfume and tucked them in the sheets. Honest mistake she thought deviously. She was surprised at herself. The actions of the past evening were so unlike her. Maybe it was PTSD. Who knows.
He was ready quickly and they left together. He wanted to make them some coffee but questioned the stability of his hands. He had to get her out of there. It was proving dangerous. They took the car ride in silence. When they arrived she got out and walked ahead using her own key to open the store.
For the rest of the day they avoided each other like the plague with the exception of a few stolen glances. Later that day the company secured gas for the employees which allowed Emily to go home that night happy to find her power back on.
Emily needed to get out of the apartment for a while. As if an answer to a prayer, Kim, from work texted her and asked if she wanted to grab a drink. Happy for the out Emily told her yes and they arranged a meeting. They caught up on trivial work stuff. Then Kim started digging. “So how are things with Marquez?”. “Fine” Emily responded too quickly. ” oh ” Kim said quietly. “Why? Is there something I should know?” Emily asked. She knew that Kim and jasper hung out time to time but never really asked what the nature was. Now she began to wonder if he had mentioned anything to her. “Is there something you want to know?” Kim baited. She could sense there was something up between them. They acted strange the last time she was at work. She had tried to ask jasper about it but all she got were vague one word answers. Something that was not like him. she nagged him some more and all he gave her was that he had a bad date with a girl. she asked how it was bas, and all he said was that it wasnt going to happen again. So she figured she’d grill Emily for info. “What are you getting at, Kim” emu asked, reading her young friend like a book. ” just curious. You guys were acting weird.” Kim answered. ” it’s nothing. We just had a mild altercation.” Emily lied. If Kim knew something she wasn’t letting on and Emily wasn’t going to be the one to do it. ” ok… But I do not believe you.” Kim said ” that’s fine. Why don’t you ask him?” Emily said defensively. ” I did.” Hearing that emily froze. “And?” Emily asked quietly. ” aha. What’s going on Emily? Look. You don’t wanna tell me? Fine. Don’t. But I wouldn’t pursue it. He’s really bizarre and I don’t think you should get mixed up with him.” Kim accused. ” I’m not mixed up with him. There’s nothing going on. ” Emily defended. ” and what do you mean by bizarre? Aren’t you guys friends?” Emily asked. ” yeah we are friends. I guess. He sends me weird messages all the time though. He’s really lonely. He serial dates and they never work out because he gets really clingy. He even asked me out enough times that I had to tell him to knock it off.” Kim explained. ” you guys wouldn’t work out. Trust me. He doesn’t go for girls like you” ” girls like me?” Emily asked angrily, “what does that mean?” ” you are not girly enough. You know that. He likes really girly girls. You put on makeup but you act like a guy. You are tough and intimidating . He doesn’t find that attractive.” Kim continued. ” he said that to you?” Emily asked. ” not verbatim. But he told me he had a bad date the other night. ” ” what does that have to do with me” “it was the night you didn’t go home. You stayed at his place that night didn’t you?” Emily was done with this conversation. She was insulted and had no interest on going further. She dropped some money and got up from the table. “Emily! What happened?”. Kim yelled as she got up. ” none of your damn business. Nothing. This conversation is over.” Emily said and then walked off.
Emily was still a little off from her fight with Kim the next day at work. She was especially irritable which alerted jasper. “You ok Em?” He asked. “Yep. Fine.” She replied quickly. He didn’t believe her. He also felt they had to have a conversation about what has happened at his apartment that prior week. He had been thinking about it and just couldn’t let it go. He could feel the tension between them and he couldn’t shake how much it bothered him. “Hey. Emily. Are you busy this afternoon?” He asked. “Not really, why? Need me to pick something up?” She inquired knowing these conversations usually end on an errand. “No. I was wondering if we could talk a minute after work.” “About what?” She responded quickly, when her gaze met his she could tell he wasn’t talking about work anymore and she froze. ” there’s nothing to talk about.” She followed. “I think there is.” Jasper argued. ” delirium from prehypothermia and bad decision making. There. We talked about it.” She said coldly. She needed to get out of there. She didn’t want some bullshit sugar coated reasoning. She started walking out of the office. She walked into the electrical room to catch her breath. Before she could exhale he came in behind her. He kicked the doorstop which meant the door was going to lock from the outside. ” fine. You don’t want to talk later. We will talk now.” He said stepping closer so he didn’t have to speak loudly. ” there’s nothing to talk about, Marquez. I made a bad decision. I should not have come to your place. It’s over.” She said coolly trying to keep her dignity, her eyes locked on his. He was a little insulted but didn’t believe her. He refused to believe the tension between them and his last few nights where he couldn’t sleep without thoughts of her clouding his brain was not a big deal. “Over, huh? Bullshit.” He tested. Before she could respond he grabbed her. His mouth found hers easily, hungrily. She was startled by it but she felt herself meeting his tongue with hers and she leaned into it. Feeling her submission sent him on a carnal high. He hoisted her up and slammed her against the wall as her legs wrapped around his waist. He was a full foot taller than her but he held her up at his level. He started kissing her neck and his fingers buried in her hair. Her smell was overwhelming his senses and he began to lose control. Feeling his lips on her neck caused her eyes to roll back and his obvious primal need for her sent her over the edge. He set her down on the ledge and his hands went for her shirt. She grabbed his hands before he could rip the buttons. He couldn’t wait for that so get just pulled the blouse over her head. His mouth traveled down to the space between her breasts as his hand grabbed one and squeezed . He found her nipple and toyed with it a minute before his mouth came to join. His tongue on her sensitive flesh sent a shot of fire down to her core. Her hands fumbled on his belt. She got it undone and dropped them to his ankles. He took that as a cue and went for hers. He slid her pants down her legs and moved aside enough to take one of her legs out. There was nothing between them now but a thin layer of cotton and lace. Seeing the black lace he had fantasized about was more than he could bear. His hand traveled quickly down her body and found her. Slick and warm. Shivers shocked her body as he found her clit with his thumb. He thrust two fingers into her depth and they both knew she was ready and waiting. Her hands traveled to his waist and lower. She grabbed him and pulled him closer to her. Her hands found him and guided him towards her tunnel. Just as his tip touched her entrance his eyes shot to hers. He stayed there a minute as her eyes pleaded with him to continue. He answered them with a swift thrust. All the while his eyes locked on hers. He hoisted her up again against the wall and he pushed into her deeper each time. Her fingers were wrapped in his hair as he buried his head in her neck. His breathing got even quicker with little moans in between. She could feel him getting close. It didn’t take long for the explosion in her center to detonate. Her back arched and feeling her tighten around him he grabbed her face once more. He looked her straight in the eye and she came around him instantly. He felt her warmth gush over him and he let go and emptied himself inside her. He held her there for a minute as their breathing slowed. He let her down to her feet and he buttoned himself. She stood in shock a minute and started dressing quickly in silence. When she was done he grabbed her chin and kissed her lips once more. Before she could melt into it he stopped. ” you were right. There is nothing to talk about ” and he turned and left running a hand through his hair.