Playing Games

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Amateur

This is my first story on Lit and also my first attempt at writing erotica. All comments, complimentary are highly appreciated!

*****

It was Friday night, and a beautiful one at that. Crisp as a night at the start of spring should be, and gorgeously starry, so most people had left the dorm. I cursed first my professor for making assignments due Fridays at 10pm and then myself for having procrastinated once again. It sucked working in the lounge as I watched all my friends leave to have fun, but at least if people were walking by me I’d know what they were up to so I could join. At 9, I had dressed for the evening already and was finishing up the work, looking forward to heading to Jamie’s place for movie night. It would be a fun time – hanging out with my ex in a larger group of friends, proving to ourselves that we could be normal again just a few months after breaking up.

“Hey, Ellie! Stats homework again?” I looked up to see Dan walking out of his hall and into the lounge in his pajamas, hair rumpled and eyes sleepy. He must have been napping. I love that being in college makes it appropriate to take random naps at age nineteen. We had gone for a run before dinner, and a warm shower afterward would have put me to sleep, too – so I showered in frigid water to get myself in the problem set mood.

“Yeah, just finishing up,” I said sheepishly. Clearly I complained about this more than I realized if he remembered. “What, did running a couple miles put you to sleep?”

“Nah, but eating a couple dinners afterward sure did!” he joked. He came and sat down by me as I clicked submit. “What’s the plan for tonight?”

“Most of the gang’s probably at Jamie’s by now. I think we were going to watch Love, Actually? Meg’s pick.” A good movie, of course, but I had already seen it enough times to have it memorized. We all took turns picking a movie for Friday movie night, hosted at Jamie’s because he lived in an apartment rather than the dorms so we could be as loud as we wanted. My last pick had been Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Dan’s, if I recalled correctly, had been Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights. Not the manliest, but hey, I thought it was good. Most of the guys, Jamie included, tended toward dystopia and action flicks. I’ll watch a good thriller any day but I’m not big on depressing futuristic stories.

Dan yawned as he sat down beside me. “Okay. You ready to go?” I nodded as I put my computer to sleep. “Okay” – yawn – “give me five minutes more to vegetate and I’ll go change so we can walk over together.” But he actually slumped down further. I groaned, realizing that it was going to be a chore getting him back up if he was in a lazy mood. He can tear up trails like anyone else when we’re running, but outside of that Dan’s the most laid back guy in our group of friends – so much so that he has watched a couple of the girls he liked get asked out by his friends while he waited around to make a move. It’s a shame, really, because he’s a great person.

I scrolled through emails and texts on my phone to kill some time and make sure plans hadn’t changed. A couple minutes later, my I-don’t-plan-to-think-about-work-for-the-next-24-hours high kicked in, so I stood up, faced him, and stuck my hands out to him. He took both my hands in his and I pulled. To my surprise instead of getting up he pulled back, and I toppled, landing half on him and half on the floor.

“Hey! Come on, it’s Friday night, dude, let’s go!” Dan sighed. He was still holding my hands and he hummed absentmindedly as he moved them in a semblance of a dance. I recognized the humming as the song from Dirty Dancing – “Time of My Life”. “Da-aaan,” I whined as I untangled my fingers from his. “If you don’t get up now, I will tickle you until you scream.”

He stopped humming and stared incredulously at me through messy, light brown locks. “Oh, yeah? Do it. I dare you.” And he dropped my hands, holding his arms out as if to expose himself as much as possible. Okay, not quite the reaction I had planned for. I lightly ticked his sides. No response. I tried his stomach and even armpits. Nothing, damnit. One of those unbelievable people who aren’t ticklish. I groaned.

He smirked a bit. “Now, what do I get to do in return?”

“Anything, as long as it results in you getting up and getting ready!”

“Anything, huh?”

“Sure…”

He stood up – finally! – and brought me up with him. Then he bent a bit, picked me up by my thighs and threw my torso over his shoulder. What! Manhandling me was not included in “anything!” He quickly crossed the lounge and tossed me down on the other couch, laughing. I wanted to be indignant about the whole thing, but his blue eyes were sparkling and seemed to be getting such a kick out of it that I started laughing, too.

As I started to sit up, he sat down on the couch with his thighs over my shins, making it impossible for me to stand. “Dude, let’s go!” He faced me, laughing now quieted to a wry smile.

“Nope. Your turn again, but I’ll give you a choice this time. Truth or dare?” There was mischief eryaman escort in his eyes.

Truth or dare, really? Were we in fourth grade? What had gotten into the guy? Well, dares hadn’t really worked out well for me so far, so I went with truth.

“Would you dance with me now?”

What an odd question. We’ve danced together before – we’re part of a group of tightly knit friends in which everyone has danced with everyone in various styles and stages of inebriation, and Dan’s probably the best of the guys. He moves well and has a lot of fun.

“Yeah, sure, I guess.” He fished his phone out of his pocket, put some music on and stood up, spinning around to give me his hand. Truth doesn’t really require one to follow through, but I figured why not. He was clearly in a really weird mood but I wasn’t too torn up about missing Love, Actually anyway.

Dan whisked me into a pleasant dance. I can follow a lead decently most of the time, but I don’t really know one style from another or what kind of music is required for what. This didn’t feel sultry like Latin, but it wasn’t stuck up like classic ballroom either – it was fast, something more like swing. I wondered as he spun me this way and that if people would think we were nuts if they walked by, but the chances of that happening at this time were low anyway.

As the song ended, I decided to play along with his game. We were both a bit winded, and had ended with him holding me close to him but facing away. I winced slightly as I realized that my hands in his were still a little cold, as always. “Truth or dare?” I asked, not turning to face him.

He hesitated a bit, as if he were surprised I was playing along. His lips were close to my ears when he spoke, still breathing just a little fast. “Well, since you didn’t exactly get to choose the last one… dare.” The last word was drawn out. It would have sounded like he was trying to be seductive, but given this is Dan, he was probably just playing.

I didn’t really have a good dare in mind. It’s hard to top bodily slamming someone on the sofa and swing dance with a half-naked guy in the middle of the dorm lounge. I thought for a couple seconds and came up empty. Dan was still holding me against him and our breathing had slowed to almost normal. His hands were on mine and his arms were draped around me as if he were my cape. I felt warm and safe in this embrace, and then I felt just a tad guilty for it. But hey, I was single and had been over two months, so why should I?

Completely uninspired and distracted trying to figure out what was really going on here, I decided to just follow the dancing theme. “Slow dance?”

I could almost feel Dan’s lips curve into a smile behind my head. He walked us both sideways to the table where his phone was, swiped this way and that for a few seconds, then moved us back to the middle of the room. He doesn’t want to let go either, I realized.

From the tiny phone speakers, I heard Elvis croon, “Ohhh, my love, my da-aa-rling”. Unchained Melody. A bit intense for two friends having a bit of fun before heading out to chill with the rest of the gang, but also one of my favorite songs. We moved slowly, in no definite pattern, and I allowed his lithe body (whose proximity and semi-nakedness had not gone unnoticed by my baser instincts) to guide mine around the room once again. Halfway through, he spun me slowly around to face him.

Though I liked the old-fashioned sweetness of having his hands at my waist and mine around his neck, there were two problems with the new arrangement. One, the solid warmth holding me was gone – he was keeping me a bit farther now than before. Two, I had to look at his face this way, and the intensity and earnestness in his dark blue eyes was disconcerting. As the song finished, I found myself with my back against the wall, his eyes staring questioningly into mine.

Maybe it was just the heat of the moment, but for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out what those pleading eyes were asking. I glanced away for just a second to compose my thoughts, and immediately the spell was broken. He dropped his hands from my waist and took a couple steps back. “Sorry, Ell. Got a bit carried away there. I’ll get dressed and be right back and we can head out.” He turned on his heel and quickly left the lounge, heading toward his room.

If I had missed his warmth when he turned me while dancing, this was like being drenched with an ice cold bucket. Maybe the metaphoric cold woke me up, because suddenly I knew what his eyes had been asking for – permission. To do what, I wasn’t sure. Hold me closer? Kiss me? Whatever it was, I felt like an idiot for pushing him away and not finding out for sure, even inadvertently. Of course he wouldn’t make a move without being really cautious. This was Dan, after all. He was Jamie’s friend and I was Jamie’s ex. Bro code and all that, even though I was fairly certain Jamie wouldn’t have cared – as I said, there weren’t really any hard feelings.

Even if Jamie wasn’t an impediment, though, is that what I wanted? We were the sincan escort easygoing group of friends where dating around the circle and even one-night stands were taken in stride. I knew for sure Meg had hooked up with Jamie before we started dating at the start of sophomore year. What I didn’t know if I could handle a one-time fling. I had never had one before. And if we were going to try for more than that, was I really looking for a relationship again? I shook my head to clear it, still rooted to the spot against the wall where Dan had left me. In an uncharacteristically resolute fashion, I decided I’d give him another shot – if that was even what this was and I wasn’t reading too far into him.

Dan poked his head around the lounge doorframe and cocked his head slightly when he saw that I hadn’t moved an inch since he left. As promised, he was back in just a few minutes, dressed this time in a plain t-shirt and linen pants in homage to the warming weather. Actually, just the pants were weather-related. In the 20ish months I had known him, I had rarely seen him wear anything but a plain t-shirt. “Shall we?” he asked lightly.

He was all business now. I had lost my chance. In an attempt to get the moment back, I offered, “Want a glass of water before we head out? I’m going to grab some.”

“Sure,” he said, in that way that made it obvious he didn’t care much one way or another. I grabbed my computer and headed toward my room, bringing back two glasses and shoving my feet into sneakers without tying them. In the communal kitchen next to the lounge I filled up the glasses, warm for me and cold for Dan. He was sitting on the couch looking at his phone.

I walked over and nudged his knee with mine. He looked up and put out his hand. This was my chance. I held his eye, and as I handed the glass to him, I made sure our fingertips brushed for a split second longer than necessary. Then I sat down next to him, closer than I really needed to, so I could just feel his loose pants brush my leggings.

I took a sip of the water, and confusion about Dan aside, I was glad I had. I needed the soothing warmth of it trickling down my throat after the laughing and dancing we had done. Was that really just ten minutes ago?

“My turn – truth,” I said, boring holes into his forehead just above his eyes. Please take the bait. Please.

He turned to me questioningly. “Don’t you want to go?”

I blanched a bit. He didn’t want to play anymore. I was jumping to conclusions. I tried to lighten things up a bit and arched one eyebrow. “Is that the question you’re asking me? Seems like a waste of a truth.”

“Well, no – but I guess you’ve given me the answer anyway.” He paused. “Which makes me hopeful maybe. Give me a couple seconds to work up the courage to ask the actual question.”

Courage?? What could he ask me that might need courage to ask? His face was taut. I couldn’t imagine what he was so worried about. He turned his face away from me and murmured something, his voice a couple notes lower than usual. I couldn’t make out a single word.

I leaned forward a bit and around him so I could see his face again. “Come again? You’re mumbling.”

He turned his face even further away, but this time he enunciated a bit better, and his question sent my thoughts into a tailspin. “When I left you to get dressed, did you wish I hadn’t?”

Was he trying to scope me out? Or was he as confused as I was? Hell, did he think I was initiating something? I thought for sure I was responding to his weird mood from earlier. Either way, I didn’t want to answer the back of his head, so I put my glass down, got up and walked around to his other side, sitting a little further away from him this time. He didn’t move his head, so I looked straight at him and told him the truth – “Yes.”

Some of the tension melted off his face and he regarded me closely as he confessed, “Me, too. Can we keep playing? I choose dare.”

I slowly drew in a breath. He wanted me to make the next move. We had both admitted we didn’t want to go out. Friends don’t choose to hang out separately from their other friends in pairs on Friday night except for very specific reasons. This game was clearly going down a particular road. Doubt filled me again. Did I want that? Was I ready for it? There was really no reason for guilt, but that didn’t mean there weren’t any butterflies in my stomach. I exhaled slowly and whispered, “Finish what you started. When we were against the wall, I mean.”

He jerked his head up an inch or two. His eyes flickered momentarily with panic, then with resolve and he stood. “Hard to do sitting,” he said, offering me his hand. Fleetingly, I wondered if I should pull him down as he had earlier. Dan smirked as if he read my thoughts. “Nope. I’m prepared.” It was a relief to see that grin, a small return to normalcy. I smiled back and put my hand in his.

He pulled me up, then immediately let go of me and looked away. He’s nervous, too, I thought. I stepped toward him, tipping my face up slightly. I’m fairly tall for batıkent escort a girl. Jamie still towered over me at 6’3″, but Dan’s not the tallest guy, so our mouths were just a couple inches apart. Slowly, as if his arms were weighted by lead, he brought his hands to my shoulders and his mouth softly to mine.

Once. Twice. By the third swipe of his lips against mine, I wanted more pressure so I cupped his face and deepened the kiss. He slid his hands slowly from my shoulders up the nape of my neck until he was cradling my head. The kiss became warmer, wetter, thoughts of breathing forgotten as I drank the hot sweetness dripping from his lips.

We took a step toward each other at the same time, bumped bodies, and immediately pulled apart. Had he felt the same rush I had when our chests touched? I opened my eyes as wide as saucers – when had I closed them anyway? – and stepped away, then flopped back to the couch. “Truth, please, I choose truth.”

I was being chicken, I knew, but I needed to get my wind back and couldn’t risk him getting too close as I did. Either he sensed my mini freak-out happening, or he needed some space to collect himself, too, because he sat down a couple feet away and faced me, looking serious. “Ellie, are you really okay with this?” A pause. “Yes, that’s the question for truth. I need to know I’m not pressuring you. We can still walk away from this, go watch a silly movie and it’ll be cool.”

I turned toward him. He was being perfectly sincere. And he’d waste a precious turn making sure that I was okay. That, more than anything, told me that we could be good. He clearly cared about me. I mean, of course he did, we were friends, I cared about him too, and we valued both our friendship and the group dynamic with our friends. But there was more there in his gaze, a depth that told me that maybe this wasn’t impromptu, that he knew when he walked out of his room that I’d be out in the lounge alone and maybe, just maybe, he was willing to risk trying for something other than friends. Something more complicated, sure, but as the kiss had evidenced, something infinitely sweet.

I took a few moments to sort my thoughts, then smiled so he wouldn’t think I was having second thoughts. “I’m really okay, Dan. I don’t know yet where this is going or where you want it to go or even where I want it to go. But I trust you and myself to say stop if it’s not working. Yes?”

He nodded. Good. Especially after I missed his earlier cue for the kiss, I needed him to know that his comfort mattered to me too. “Then I choose dare.”

I figured we could at least start by going back to where we had started. “I dare you to take your shirt back off.”

I half expected Dan to give me an incredulous look, but instead he just raised his eyebrows the tiniest bit. He looked straight at me and began to hike up his iconic solid, round-necked t-shirt. Tonight it was light blue, which suited him particularly well, reflecting his eyes. I felt my heartbeat quicken. It was silly – he was walking around shirtless not fifteen minutes ago and it didn’t affect me at all, at least initially. I’ve definitely seen him without a shirt on before as well, probably even seen him taking one off when we’ve gone swimming with our friends. But still, he wasn’t taking it off for me then, not at my… request? Command? Who knew anymore.

“Truth or dare?” His voice was quieter, maybe a little huskier than it had been last round. This was my last chance. I could choose Truth again and end this dangerous game right here. He’d understand and we’d head to Jamie’s, guaranteed to still be friends. Friends kissed sometimes and decided it wasn’t for them. I knew Dan would respect that. If I chose to continue past this point, there was no saying what would happen.

“Dare.”

He thought for a second, then smiled briefly, coming to a decision. “I dare you to touch me everywhere that you couldn’t see when I had my shirt on.” It was my turn to raise my eyebrows ever so slightly, but I appreciated his creativeness in not just asking me to reciprocate. Then again, me stripping in the lounge is a bit more risqué than him doing it.

I slid slowly toward him on the couch. I knew my fingers would be cold. I was nervous, and they were always cold anyway. It didn’t matter that the rest of my body seemed to be burning, probably heating up given how hard my heart was now pounding. Oh well, he asked for it.

I stared into him as he had just done, and decided to start off innocently, placing just the tips of my fingers on his shoulders. Nice and friendly. I ran them lightly down the underside of his arms to his elbows, then back up the other side. I paused again at his shoulders.

Hit by a flash of inspiration, I nudged his legs together with my knees and sat on his thighs facing toward him, taking care to stay away from his crotch and to keep my fingers lightly on his shoulders. Then I brought my hands through his armpits and to his back, never once losing contact with my fingers or my eyes. Reaching around him to his back this way forced me to lean forward until our fronts were almost touching, bare chest to dressed, face to face, lips just short of joined once more, all as planned. I explored his hard, smooth back lazily, trying my best to conceal how much I craved more contact.

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