Seeing Stars

Seeing Stars by Vanessa Grant Read Free Book Online

Book: Seeing Stars by Vanessa Grant Read Free Book Online
Authors: Vanessa Grant
Tags: Fiction, Short Stories
blind so she could see the parking lot.
    Two minutes later, a motorcycle purred down the slope and turned into the parking lot. A motorcycle...
    She'd asked him for a motorcycle ride, wanted to speed along the highway clinging to him, the way Lydia once had.
    She'd been insane last night!
    She shoved her purse strap high on her shoulder and stepped out the door. Maybe he'd get the message from her clothes. She'd worn jeans, a T-shirt, and the battered denim jacket she always took hiking in the summer. She'd braided her hair in a thick braid down her back, too, and she'd deliberately refused to put on any makeup, not even lipstick.
    "Good morning, Blake:"
    He hadn't dismounted from the bike. He sat astride with his feet on the ground, his arms and shoulders covered by a black leather jacket, his face obscured by his helmet. He reached back for something, then held a helmet out to her.
    "Hop on, but get that helmet on first."
    "Blake, I want to say something."
    A woman came out of the unit next door, dressed in bathing suit and towel. She smiled hello and crossed the pavement toward the swimming pool.
    What could Claire say, here, standing in the parking lot with his motorcycle purring? She'd have to wait, or else demand he dismount, take off that helmet and listen to her while she made a fool of herself for the second time this weekend.
    She jerked on her helmet.
    "The strap," he said.
    Maybe he was smiling, but she couldn't tell through his visor. He reached toward her chin and she stepped back, snapping the strap into place herself.
    "Hop on, Claire."
    She took a deep breath and approached the bike. She'd never been on one before, but from her memories of the way he'd raced through Port Townsend in their high school days, she could be taking her life in her hands getting on this one now.
    His driving had been sane enough in the truck last night, but maybe a big motorcycle did something to a man's testosterone levels. This was certainly a big bike, massive compared to the one he'd had back in high school.
    She swung her leg over and found herself sitting on a plush seat behind and a little below Blake, between a small metal rail and Blake's leather-clad back. She thought of the intimate way Lydia had clung to Blake's back as they sped away from the school.
    She'd hang onto that rail instead.
    "Put your feet on the pegs and slide your purse strap over your head."
    She adjusted her purse and felt with her feet until she found the pegs. Putting her feet on them aligned her thighs under Blake's. She angled her body back a bit and grasped the rails behind her with both hands, leaving a good four inches between her breasts and his leather-covered back.
    "If you drop me off at Manresa Castle, I can get my car."
    She didn't know if he'd heard her or not, but suddenly the bike's engine roared to life and she grabbed hard to the rail, fighting to maintain her balance as they swung up the hill and around the corner onto the road.
    "Blake, I don't... Blake!"
    He stopped at the stop sign and she felt his legs shift as he braced the bike. Then he turned his head and she saw only the dark shading of his visor. "Don't try to balance the bike. Hang onto me, and let me do the balancing."
    When she felt his legs shift and the bike surged into motion, she grabbed, clutching at his back, her arms curling around his chest. They were hurtling along far too quickly on the narrow road, and when he finally slowed again, she realized they were about to turn onto the highway.
    "Blake—"
    "It's OK, Claire. Just relax."
    At least that's what she thought he said.
    Then they were on the highway, the engine throbbing between her legs, her arms clutching his chest. They'd tilted, almost gone right over on that corner, and she'd plastered her body to his back and turned her head so she could see the houses whipping by, but not the road ahead. She closed her eyes now, tightly, and calculated how long it would take them to get to Port Townsend.
    Eight miles? Or

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