She was nice. I liked the way she fit against me. Her hands pressed my fingers away from my palm as she gazed down. "You have a strong life line ..." She smiled. Her body warmth was seeping into me through our clothes.

"You've ... been following me?" She was pretty; sexy too. I wondered what had attracted her to me.

"I know you're not dating anyone."
"Yes, I am ..." I laughed softly, cupping her face and kissing her..." You are?" She was hesitant for the first time ...

"Yes .... if you'd like ..."

She let her breath out and kissed me back ... the warmth became warmer between us. I tasted her smile once more and then she broke away. "Look, I have to go...I didn't mean for us to meet like this."
I nodded. It was all happening pretty fast. "I liked it." She could read my feelings on my face. I wasn't lying. "Ok, then. Well, I'll see you.", and she was off. I called her name but she didn't look back.

It was time for my next class. It went faster than usual, my thoughts turning back to the strange moment we'd shared. I went on automatic, explaining Elizabethan Literature to the class who was on automatic as well, several students taking copious notes to keep themselves awake while the others traded sighs.

She wasn't there when I left the classroom. I half suspected she would be. I could feel her though, her eyes on my back. I restrained myself from peering around me. She'd come back when she was ready. And she did.

"I'm not sure I want to hear about this ... bragging about your exploits should have left you in your teenage years." He swirled the rest of his beer around inside his mug and appraised me again with his eyes before taking another sip.

I waited until he put the mug back down and looked him back in the eye.
 "This is something you should know before you make any strong commitments with her. I know it's hard to see beyond her right now. How I know! I'm probably the only past you'll learn about her, if she's like she was with me." I saw the light of uneasy comprehension dawn on him and settled back in my seat to finish the story. It was his hand this time that shivered as he took another drink.

"All right, get on with it. I don't have to believe a word you say, you know, but your right about not knowing much about her."

I couldn't resist. "For starters, she's not Jennifer Warren. She uses that name because she likes it. When she didn't show up for days, I checked the student records, even the faculty and family records just in case. There's no one by that name at the university. That's something you can check for yourself if you want to."

I didn't like what I saw in his eyes just then. I knew I was throwing too much at him, but I only had this one moment to share it all. I reached out and grasped his hand to steady him.

It did the job. He jerked his arm away angrily and called for another beer. "If you're lying, you know I'll kill you..." He said simply. I nodded. I'd felt the same way.

I'd left the bedroom window open to let in the night air. I'd finally settled back into my routine, teaching the familiar classes and doing my writing and reading on the side. She had become a pleasant fantasy for when I grew tired and needed to take a break, but nothing more, I thought. The days had turned into a week.

It was the same as the day before. I had come back a few times to the same bench under the tree, but she'd failed to show up. The feeling that she was watching me had faded slowly, too. She was either very, very good ... or ... I didn't know exactly what .... there was little or no explanation in my mind for what had happened.
There didn't need to be. I wasn't a scientist, and knew better than to believe there was a solid reason for everything, especially in things of the spirit or emotions.

It wasn't until I was seated in the library, pouring through some of those dusty research tombs that occupy the fourth floor when I felt, more than saw, someone slip into a seat one table away in front of me.
It was she. The chill that went through me was so strong that I felt goose bumps on my arms as I stared at the sight of her. It was as if she hadn't recognized it was me, sitting so close to her. It felt like she wanted to be left alone.

Her body language soon told me otherwise. She stretched and woman curves caressed my vision as they rode beneath her sweater and skirt. Her eyes looked past me, but there was a small smile upon her lips that told me volumes more than the research books beneath my fingertips.

She had sought me out again. I slid down into my chair and lifted up one of the hard bound books, my eyes trailing over her as she flirted silently with me for the next few hours ... until even the sound of other footsteps on the library floor walked away into silence.
The teasing ways of her suddenly grew more bold and intense, her lips pouting as her fingers played with long strands of her hair ... sliding down her throat and ... but I don't need to tell you what she can do, do I?

With minutes to spare, before the libary closed, she rose from her chair and before I could muster my courage, walked away into the night. When I finally got to my front door, she was sitting there beneath my porch light, waiting.

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Revised: March 6, 1999
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