14

Mind Games

Warning – Contains sexual content & nudity

My cell phone chirped as I was heading out the door. It was my new friend, Christopher Daley-Palakiko. After we chatted for a few minutes, Christopher said, “I’m at the theater, working on a soundtrack for a new romantic comedy, Jill, and I’d love to get your take on it. Are you busy this afternoon?”

“Well, I was going out for a run, but I’d much rather hear you play. I’ll just have to change first.”

“No need for that,” he chuckled. “Just come as you are. I’m wearing shorts, and besides, no one is around during the day. That’s why it’s the perfect time to compose music. No distractions.”

“All right then. I can be there in about 15 minutes. Does that work?”

“That’s perfect. I’ll meet you out front near the ticket booth.”

Screenshot-1

I let the kids know I was meeting a friend and wasn’t sure how long I’d be out. Kylie and Kendra assured me they had things under control. I grabbed my car keys and headed over to the Imagine That! Theater on Sonora Street. As I pulled into the parking lot, I saw Christopher smiling at me in front of the ticket booth.

Strolling toward Christopher, I returned his smile and waved. “Hi, Christopher!”

Screenshot-2

“Jill, it’s great to see you again. Thanks so much for coming on such short notice. I have to admit romantic comedies aren’t exactly my comfort zone,” he said sheepishly. “I’d feel more comfortable having a woman’s opinion and I immediately thought of you.”

Screenshot-3

“I’m honored. You’re at the top of your field, Christopher. I’m sure it’ll be brilliant.” Shrugging my shoulders, I said, “Honestly, I don’t know how much help I could possibly be.”

Screenshot-4

“Tell you what. I’ll give you a quick overview of the storyline. Then, I’ll play the score for you. Just listen and give me your honest opinion about the song and whether it seems to fit the movie premise. That’s all I ask.”

“OK. I can handle that. Let’s do it.”

Screenshot-5

Christopher unlocked the theater entrance and said, “After you.…” Once inside the door, Christopher put a hand on the small of my back and led me upstairs.

Screenshot-6

“Here we are,” he said as we walked into a room with an elegant, glossy black, baby grand piano standing proudly in the corner. “My home away from home. And, this is my baby.”

Suddenly, I felt the need to stop moving forward, but I didn’t know why. It was only for a moment, and then the feeling quickly faded away. I brushed it off, convinced I was imagining things.

Screenshot-7

Christopher told me a little about the upcoming movie and then sat down at the piano and began to play. The melody was upbeat, a little flirty and seemed to fit perfectly with the mood of the film he described. He played the piano with utmost ease, his long, nimble fingers gliding harmoniously over the keys. I was in awe.

Screenshot-8

When he finished, Christopher looked up at me with an adorable boyish expression, hands on his lap, and said, “So, what do you think?”

Before I could open my mouth to answer, Christopher stood up and put a finger over my lips to silence me and went behind me, wrapping his arms around my shoulders. He leaned his head toward mine and said quietly, “OK. I’m ready. Let me have it, and be brutally honest.”

I wrapped my hands around his right arm, enjoying the warm hug, and said, “It was perfect, Christopher. Absolutely perfect. You’re a brilliant composer, and you have very talented hands.”

Screenshot-9

Christopher came around to my left side, his arm still draped around my shoulder, and said humbly, “Thank you. I’m glad you like it.” Then he brushed his lips against mine in a tender kiss. “Jill, I have a confession to make. You know I’m not from around here, right?”

“Mm-hmm. Go on…”

“Well, I’m not from this planet at all, actually. I have certain … powers … that humans don’t have.”

“I assume there’s a point to what you’re trying to tell me. Just spit it out, Christopher. I’m a big girl. I can handle it.”

Screenshot-10

Christopher took a deep breath, and then exhaled and continued. “I can read people’s thoughts. I don’t do it often, but I read your mind when we walked into my studio today.” He must’ve seen the look of shock and horror on my face because he said, “Jill, please don’t be angry with me. I care for you a great deal, and I wanted to know whether I had a chance with you. Mind reading is a power that’s an integral part of my DNA and is as natural to me as breathing is to you. I have to consciously suppress the impulse.”

At first I was furious, but I didn’t lash out as I had expected. I tried to think about it logically, suspending emotion for the time being. I had gotten to see a side of Christopher today that I hadn’t before. He has been nothing but kind to me since I met him, and by the way he played the piano, he is clearly a passionate man. I decided I’d at least hear him out. “I don’t want you to get the impression I’m OK with this, because I’m not. I have to admit I’m curious about what you discovered, though.”

Christopher wrapped his arms around my waist and held me against his chest as he quietly conveyed what he’d learned from the depths of my psyche. It was as if he knew it would feel less intrusive to hear what he had to say without having to face him. “I understand now why you’re hesitant to get involved with someone. Your breakup with Charles was difficult on you, and you’re afraid to open your heart again so soon. I know all about your past and that you need a man who is willing to accept your circumstances. Jill, I know you value my friendship. I’d like us to be more than friends. I sensed your attraction to me, and I think I’ve made it pretty clear that I want you,” he said, letting his words sink in as he peppered kisses along my shoulder and up my neck. “How would you feel about raising an alien baby?”

Screenshot-10a

I could feel Christopher’s lopsided grin against the back of my neck, and I had to smile at that. “You know, I should be mad at you, but for some reason I’m not. Everything you’ve said is true. I’m not ready for a steady relationship, but raising an alien baby sounds like a lot of fun.”

“So … friends with benefits, then?” Christopher hugged me tighter as he continued kissing my neck.

A soft moan slipped out as I turned to look up at him. “That works for me.”

Christopher leaned down to kiss me, lightly at first, then taking possession of my mouth. I arched back and grasped the back of his head to deepen the kiss. Christopher’s long fingers caressed my exposed skin as he said, “I’m glad you didn’t change clothes. You look hot as hell in your running gear.” Following the curve of my waist, Christopher ran his hands down to my hips and dug his fingers in, groaning as he pressed his pelvis against my behind. “This … mmm … this is one fine ass,” he whispered in my ear.

Screenshot-11

Slipping his fingers along the inside of my waistband, he deftly lowered my pants until my butt was exposed. He inhaled sharply, eyes wide. “Whoever invented the thong was a damn genius.”

“Oh, Christopher….” I kicked off my sneakers and wriggled out of my pants, then slowly unbuttoned and unzipped Christopher’s shorts. He dropped them to the floor and kicked them aside, then toed off his boots and made quick work of his boxer briefs. My eyes widened at the sight.

“Come here, sweetheart. As tiny as that thong is, it still needs to go.” Christopher slipped it down to the floor and held it as I stepped out of it, tossing it on our growing pile of clothing. He ran his hands up the backs of my legs until he was standing upright again, squeezing my naked behind. He led me to his piano, closed the cover over the keys and turned me towards it. Positioning me behind the bench seat, Christopher pressed his hand gently on my back, coaxing me to bend forward and brace my hands on the keyboard cover. “So beautiful,” he muttered. I looked at him from over my shoulder and, with a wink, he said, “I’ll never look at this piano in quite the same way again.”

“This is a first for me, too,” I confessed.

“Then I’ll make sure it’s memorable.” And he certainly did.

Screenshot-12

Afterwards, we both got dressed. “I think we both learned a lot about each other today,” I said. Christopher held me loosely in his arms and said, “I think I understand you better now. And, what did you learn — that I’m an alien?”

“I already knew you weren’t human, though I wasn’t sure what species you were exactly. That’s not what I meant. I learned that you’re an ass man, silly.”

Christopher burst out laughing. “You know it, sweetheart.”

“I know you don’t want me to read your mind again, so I won’t. But I have to ask. Did you enjoy that as much as I did? Because I really, really did,” he smirked.

Screenshot-13

“Christopher, it was out of this world.”

“I was hoping you’d say that.” He smiled, then kissed me one more time before we made our way downstairs.

Screenshot-14

When we got outside, Christopher and I hugged goodbye. There were a few people hanging around outside the theater, and one guy in particular seemed to be looking for trouble, yelling at random people.

Screenshot-15

I turned away for a second, and suddenly Christopher and that guy are in a fistfight. I don’t even know who started it.

Screenshot-16

Within just a few minutes, the fight is over and Christopher is victorious.

Screenshot-17

The guy with the Mohawk has his hand on his back like he’s injured, and I’ve never seen Christopher look so angry.

Screenshot-18

The next thing I know, I hear maniacal laughter and see a pale man in a long black coat, pointing and laughing at Christopher and the Mohawk guy. If I’m not mistaken, Christopher looks a bit frightened.

Screenshot-19

So, while Christopher continues to stare down Mohawk guy, I take a better look at this pale stranger. I’m immediately drawn to him. Christopher says, “I’m heading out, Jill. See you soon?”

“Mm-hmm,” is all I’m able to respond as I stand transfixed on the handsome stranger.

Screenshot-20

I find myself walking towards him and gazing into his eyes. They’re mesmerizing. “Um, hi,” is all I can say.

Screenshot-21

In a deep baritone, he responds, “What’s your name, sweetness?”

“Jill.”

“You may call me Jasper,” he says as I’m inexplicably spellbound.

Screenshot-22

I couldn’t stop staring into his eyes … his beautiful, gray-blue eyes. I was like a love-struck teenager.

“I need to get out of the sun. Come home with me, Jill.”

I nodded and took his outstretched hand, as he led me out to the street and flagged down a taxi. It was a short drive to Jasper’s waterfront home. We rode in silence.

Screenshot-23

When we exited the taxi, Jasper put an arm around my waist and led me to his home, ushering me inside. I walked into the living room, towards a wall of windows overlooking the water. The decor was modern and decidedly masculine, with a chocolate brown leather sofa and matching chairs.

Jasper removed his coat, loosened his tie and drew it over his head. Then he shed his vest and began unbuttoning his shirt. “You don’t mind if I get more comfortable, do you, sweetness?”

“N-n-no,” I stuttered, “not at all.” I wanted him so badly I could barely remember my own name.

When Jasper turned around to toss his shirt out of the way, I noticed a large tattoo on his back and another on his left arm, above his bicep. He walked towards me like a panther stalking its prey. Wrapping his left arm around my waist, he leaned into me, stopping mere inches from my mouth, close enough that I could feel his warm breath on my lips. “Do you want me, Jill?” I nodded my head. “I need to hear you say the words, sweetness.”

“Yes. Yes, I want you … very much.”

Jasper’s full, sensuous lips met mine, and I surrendered myself to his hungry, possessive kiss. When his tongue surged between my lips, I responded eagerly. He smelled so good and tasted even better. I could drown in his kisses.

Screenshot-24

Jasper exuded authority and a raw sensuality, unlike any other man I’ve known. It was overwhelming. I was teeming with desire.

“I want to see you, sweetness. All of you. Let’s get you out of these clothes, shall we?”

“Yes. I want to see you, too, Jasper.”

“And so you shall, my dear.”

The next thing I knew I was standing in Jasper’s arms, without a stitch of clothing.

Screenshot-25

Jasper splayed his hand on my lower back and cradled my head, devouring my mouth in kisses that sent my head spinning and my body aching for him. I was his. There was no turning back now.

Screenshot-26

Jasper’s eyes darkened to a stormy gray as he lifted me into his arms, supporting me easily in midair. He was deceptively strong.

Screenshot-28

My hands gripped his shoulders and I wrapped my legs around his waist as he led me in an erotic dance. My thigh muscles flexed and Jasper’s hips bucked wildly, until our passion engulfed us.

Screenshot-27

Lowering me to the floor, Jasper enfolded me in his arms and gave me one searing kiss after another. I was enraptured.

Screenshot-29

“Sorry to interrupt, mate. I didn’t know you had company,” a male voice muttered. “Oh, it’s you, Jill,” he said, his voice an octave higher. “Well, I see you’ve met my roommate. Jasper, the lady is here of her own free will, is she not? Tell me you didn’t compel her.”

Screenshot-30

Hearing Jared’s voice snapped me out of my lusty haze. “Jared, is that you? What do you mean? Wait. We just … oh, my God. We just had sex. Jasper, what did you do to me?”

“Sweetness, it’s nothing, really. Just a simple compulsion that removes your inhibitions. You wouldn’t be here with me if you didn’t want to be.”

“You tricked me, Jasper.”

Screenshot-31

“You can’t say you didn’t enjoy our time together. I watched you come apart in my arms.”

Screenshot-32

“Oh, what have I done?”

Indignant, Jasper continued, “You would’ve given in to me eventually, even if I hadn’t compelled you. I merely pushed up the timetable by allowing you to give in to your desire, without guilt or shame. Nothing wrong with that.”

Screenshot-33

“Nothing wrong? I just had sex with two men today. I was a willing participant with the first man – with you, not so much.”

“Now wait just a minute. I asked you if you wanted me. You said, ‘Yes. Yes, I want you … very much,’ and that’s a direct quote. I didn’t put words in your mouth. That was your own free will talking.”

Screenshot-34

“I guess I’ll never really know, will I? You never gave me a chance to find out on my own.”

Screenshot-35

Jasper roared, “And, there it is … the guilt … the shame. I gave you a chance to enjoy yourself … truly give in to your base desires. And you had the best sex of your life. Don’t even try to deny it. Pesky human emotions … always getting in the way.”

Screenshot-36

Jared said quietly, “Jill, honey, I know you’re upset. But be careful with Jasper. You really don’t want to push him too far. I don’t want you to get hurt.”

Seeing Jasper’s fangs bared and his eyes wild with anger, I know good advice when I hear it, so I kept my response to myself, instead smiling awkwardly at Jasper and backing away towards my discarded clothes, getting dressed as quickly as I can.

Screenshot-37

“Mind your own business, Jared.”

“She’s a friend, Jasper.”

Screenshot-38

“OK, well, I’m gonna go now. You two have a nice chat.”

Before I could make it out the door, Jasper called out, “I’ll see you soon, Jill.”

Screenshot-39

As soon as I closed the front door, I made a mad dash down the dock, towards the street and waved down a taxi. As the taxi drove me back to the theater where my car was still parked, I thought about the day’s events and the two men who had taken liberties with my mind.

As much as I hated to admit it, Jasper had a point. I was drawn to him before he compelled me, a strong attraction that I would’ve suppressed because of the terrible timing. But had I not just been with Christopher moments before I met Jasper, would I have been just as easily seduced without the power of compulsion? Perhaps. With his movie star good looks and strong presence, Jasper is the epitome of an alpha male, not to mention a god in the sack. Not that I’d tell him that. He is trouble with a capital ‘T’ and something tells me I haven’t seen the last of him.