Uncut: White Flame-9

Forbidden Love is Killing Her Softly

“Anne,” Audrie uttered her sister’s name desperately.

“She loves you. She still loves you very much,” she added insistently.

She was persuading herself at the same time. Sean had been drinking. She had been sipping beer since this afternoon.

They were both drunk. ‘Oh, God! Let me be stronger this time, please!’ she prayed silently.

“Anne is not mine anymore. I can feel it to my bones now.” Sean stopped in front of the chair where Audrie sat looking as frightened as a hunted deer.

She couldn’t move even when all her nerves were screaming at her to escape.

“Please, let me go home now,” she pleaded shakily. “Please, let me take a taxi –”

“No,” Sean said flatly. He had a determined look, as though his mind was made up on something — or someone.

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Her whole body shook as though electrocuted when his fingers grasped both her arms.

He plucked her off from the chair she was sitting on.

As the warmth of his palms seeped through the thick fabric of her jacket, her fingers clutching on the chair’s wooden seat instantly weakened and automatically let go.

She was swaying as he hauled her up. She couldn’t stand properly because her knees buckled.

“I want to kiss you again,” Sean stated matter-of-factly. “I want to know if last night’s kiss was just a figment of my imagination.”

“No!” Audrie tried to struggle but all her strength had escaped out of her limbs.

She was a willing captive of his embrace once again. Only through sheer determination that she was able to turn her head away from his invading mouth.

“Stop it, please,” she pleaded hoarsely. Her voice was shaking with mixed fear and anticipation.

“Shh, be quiet…” He planted a firm kiss on her neck, causing her to whimper. It was like getting marked by a smoldering iron.

“Don’t fight it.” His strong teeth nipped her earlobe gently before grazing the sensitive skin of her cheek while traveling towards her trembling lips.

“We are destined to kiss again. You made sure of that when you responded so hotly last night…”

His warm lips hovered over her mouth as he whispered the words that taunt and torment her sensibility.

He knew she was as weak as a sacrificial lamb while she was being held tightly in his arms.

Audrie tried to speak but only a strangled sound of protest emitted from her hurting throat.

His mouth swooped down to capture her lips. She moaned in surrender.

Fighting her need for him when her body’s next to him was just a losing battle.

She’s just a woman in love now. Why not savor these sweet moments while she could? her other self asked defiantly.

Audrie didn’t need much persuasion. She kissed him back with all the pent-up passion that she had for Sean.

The world seemed to stop moving as they kissed each other hungrily.

His hands roamed everywhere. He touched her cheek, hair, back, waist, hips, thighs…

His touch burned her skin, as though leaving his marks of ownership all over her body.

Her fingers clutched at the lapels of his blazer because she felt like falling into a very deep and very dark abyss where she could never return if she fell.

There seemed no turning back…

The shrill sound of a telephone ringing had suddenly broken into the thick silence of the blazing intimacy that Audrie and Sean were sharing.

The interruption didn’t register to her at once but Sean pushed her away almost at once.

It seemed like he was consciously waiting for the call even while he was kissing her.

Audrie dropped on the nearest couch feeling bewildered and disoriented.

‘Where am I?’ she asked herself, and then she saw Sean talking urgently on the telephone.

When she heard him uttering Anne’s name several times, her lost sanity returned abruptly.

She felt like a small airplane getting battered by a gusty wind before crushing on the hard ground below.

While Sean was distracted, Audrie forced herself to stand and walk towards the kitchen.

She wanted to get away from him fast.

She’d hide anywhere if she couldn’t get out of the house now.

But she was in luck because the back door could be opened easily.

Most of her strength had returned back to her limbs so she could move quickly again.

The well-oiled gate swung open without a squeak.

She stopped on her tracks momentarily when she saw her motorbike parked behind the black car.

Somehow, she knew the smirking policeman brought her vehicle here.

As her fingers automatically searched for the keys, she realized the rumpled state of her clothing.

The hems of both her undershirt and jacket were riding above the waistline.

Sean’s caressing hands also unbuttoned her jeans.

Her cold cheeks burned as she tried to tidy her disheveled clothes with trembling hands.

Using a large rubber band that she always wore like a bracelet, she tied up her long hair before putting on the helmet.

Her thoroughly ravaged lips tingled painfully against the cold night air.

She knew she couldn’t control the motorbike properly yet so she just walked while pushing it slowly and carefully.

She dared not drive recklessly here because only one small mistake could cost her to pay thousands, even millions, if she accidentally crashed against the luxury cars that were parked along the streets.

Her family is well-off but they still cannot afford to live in a place for wealthy residents.

Not wanting to face her parents right after a shameful indiscretion, Audrie decided to go to a cheap but reputable hotel.

The company she works for always uses the place for business conferences so she’s familiar with the pricing.

Her savings may be dented a bit but the money spent would be worth the space that she needed for herself.

Two encounters with Sean always left her drained and ravaged, especially when they happened within two consecutive nights.

She’d die with shame if she saw Sean again shortly after tonight.

She would be utterly devastated and she might lose all her cautiousness in the wind.

Sean’s kisses always left her senseless.

She couldn’t think anything.

She just — feel…

Is this really love? Or is it just an obsession?

Why does she feel deliriously happy and deeply depressed at the same time?

Because her love for Sean was forbidden…?

“Would you like me to take your luggage upstairs, ma’am?”

Audrie flinched when the young man in the reception area asked her.

“Pardon?” she asked in a confused tone.

“Sorry, ma’am. I just want to help you with the luggage.”

“Oh — I don’t have any luggage.” Audrie forced a smile on her stiff lips.

“Do — do you have a secluded place where I can park my bike?”

“Yes, ma’am. Would you like me to park it for you?” The porter/receptionist offered politely.

“Oh, yes, please. Thank you so much.” She gave him the keys without hesitation.

“And here’s the key to your room. The room number’s in the key chain.”

Audrie nodded as she thanked him again.

As she got inside the hotel room, the black telephone beckoned at her. She must call her parents now.

After taking several deep breaths, she picked up the receiver and dialed the numbers. Her Mom answered the phone.

“It’s Audrie, Mom.”

“Where are you? Sean called and told us that you slipped away from him.”

Audrie swallowed hard and forced herself to speak in a light tone. “I’m not a teenager, Mom.”

“Yes, that’s correct but you still act like one. So where are you now?”

“I’m in a friend’s house. Don’t worry. I’m safe here.”

“What time are you going home tomorrow?”

“I — I don’t know…” Audrie bit her lip hard because she couldn’t tell her mother about her plan to get away for a while.

“Do you have the house keys with you?”

“Yes –”

“Good. Aimee is not here, too. I and your Dad will be at the charity ball tomorrow night. We’ll be home very late.”

“I see…”

“Take care, Audrie. Good night.”

“Good night, Mom — and to Dad.”

“I’ll tell him. He’s on the phone, too. Talking to Sean.”

Audrie felt like a deflated balloon but she couldn’t just stand there and wait to die whenever she hears his name.


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