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On The Beach By Andrew Miller

Here we are, thought Marci, first day of our vacation on an island twelve hundred miles south of ice-covered Detroit, and what does Harold order to drink? Iced tea, half sweet, half unsweet. The bartender, an Irish-looking guy with a pearl stud in his right ear, grabbed two plastic jugs from the refrigerator and started pouring. After setting the tea on the bar, he gave Marci that up-eyebrow look, the one reserved for single women after he asked them if they needed help in their room or wanted directions to the beach.

What, she wanted to know, is in the Bahama Mama?

The Bahama Mama contained coconut rum, gold rum, Nassau Royale liquor, a splash of grenadine, orange and pineapple juice. Plus, Angostura bitters, which turned out to be alcohol infused with gentian, herbs, and spices. Did she want the bitters? It was optional, considered by some to be an acquired taste.

Translation, most Americans don’t like it.

Harold was listening, iced tea in one hand, golf book in the other.

“Jesus, all that stuff in one drink. Might upset your stomach.”

Mr. Pearl Stud explained that Angostura bitters was a known remedy for upset stomach and hiccups.

There you have it, everything you could want in one drink.

We’re here to get the full experience, she thought as they traipsed down the path to the beach. And that doesn’t mean ordering the burger plate like that couple on the veranda. Poking fries into their mouths while tethered to their iPads, oblivious to purple-throated humming birds buzzing around the potted flowers, scattered palmettos and palm trees outside the fence, long stretches of white sand streaked with foamy surf.

And, just because the bartender wore a pearl in his right ear, didn’t make him gay.

Marci jammed the insulated tumbler of Bahama Mama into the sand. Harold was off to the right, closer to the beach. The only visual evidence of him was the tip of his golf book. She tilted her head back, held Bahama Mama slush in the back of her mouth until it melted, let the liquid glide down her throat. Sweet, tangy, spicy, cool and warm at the same time.

She spotted a tall figure at the water line, jogging their way.

“My God—look at that.”

He was over six feet tall, well-developed biceps and thighs, smooth, hairless skin, massive, blocky pecs and firm, russet red nipples. Bouncing along the water’s edge in his white thong. She craned her neck as he passed their palm grove. The view was even better from the rear; round, ripe melons flexing, undulating, beckoning her to follow.

She took a swig of her drink, wiped her lips with the back of her hand, then turned her head toward the other hammock.

“Need more ice?”

Harold was a slow drinker. His ice usually melted before he finished the beverage. Right after they were married she suggested that he order an extra glass just for ice. But he hadn’t done that today. Gotten distracted by Angostura bitters, pearl stud.

“Uh-huh,” he said.

“Is that, ‘Uh-huh: yes,’ or ‘Uh-huh: no,’ or ‘Uh-huh: Uh-huh’?”

Silence. What is it about guys and golf?

She settled back, took another drink. The hell with more ice. If she wanted another look at Mr. Pearl Stud, she’d get a refill.

“Are you up to five irons yet?”

More silence.

You’d think that the Scots would have figured out everything there was to know about golf years ago. Besides, there’s not much to it. Walk around a manicured lawn and slug it out with a little white ball. Carry a zillion different clubs, even though they all work the same. Handling a golf club is no different than swinging a bat, just aim lower. Once, during a pickup softball game in their back yard, her brother had rolled the ball to her. Thought he was being cute because she kept striking out. She had drilled that one good, ran the bases, sending her cousin and little sister to home plate in the process. After that he didn’t want her to play. No matter. She didn’t like playing ball with him.

My God, here he comes again.

She snatched off her glasses, shined the lenses, put them back on.

Ohhhh…our jogger is little turned on. Hmmm. Bulge in thong had grown.

“Is that a gun in your pocket or are you just glad to see me?”

Harold glanced at the beach, then back to his book.

“I wouldn’t worry about guns on this beach. These people are very strict about weapons—not like the States.”

“Right you are.”

Thong-man flew past their hammocks, feet scritch-skritching over wet sand. Buns seemed larger, more sharply defined.

“Would running around in a thong give a guy a boner?”

No answer. Understanding the five iron requires concentration.

She took another belt of the Bahama Mama, closed her eyes.

Hello there…

No, I didn’t realize you were a masseur.

Yes, yes, I would love a massage.

Here or back in the room?

The sun was doing a number on her belly and legs. That deep-down warm feeling had been building since she lay down. Her fire was stoked. She pointed her toes, rubbed her thighs together, shifted her butt.

She sat up. “Would you spread sun block on my legs? I’m getting all heated up. Don’t want to burn.”

He stretched out his arm, palm up.

“Squirt some on, step right up.”

Marci spread the towel over her thighs.

“Maybe later.”

Mr. Hard-On was out of sight.

Maybe he wasn’t turned on, that was just his regular, Sunday-go-to meeting, relaxed state.

She was on top of him, boobs pressing into his rock-hard chest, the top of her head touching the underside of his chin. A faint odor of sweat in her nostrils, she could hear his heart beating, blood throbbing in his neck, feel his chest rising and falling. His fingers made circles on the nape of her neck, detoured over her scalp, sampled her earlobes, then wandered down her spine. His palms gripped her butt, pressing her abdomen into his. She could tell that he was ready for her.

“Are you OK? Sounds like you were moaning.”

“I’m feeling great.”

“That drink didn’t disagree with you, did it? You gotta be careful with those strange herbs and spices. Remember what happened to Mother at Red Lobster.”

“Your Mom shouldn’t chug wine on an empty stomach. Nothing wrong with those shrimps.”

She lay back, studied the palm fronds.

“Just talking to myself. How’s the golf book?”

“I’m picking up lots of new techniques. The fellas back home will be impressed.”

‘That’s wonderful. What’s the latest on putting?”

“Grip is everything.”

“Read some of it to me.”

“Listen to this: ‘The big disadvantage to the overlap grip is a susceptibility of becoming too handsy and mis-timing the stroke’.”

Sounded like jerk-off instructions.

“I didn’t know golf could be so technical.”

“I need to work on my grip.”

She grabbed the Bahama Mama.

Where’s my jogger? Probably at the nudie beach.

The clothing optional beach was a couple hundred yards beyond the hotel, partially hidden behind mangroves. The woman in the gift shop had given directions, then added, “Them’s that should—don’t. Them’s that shouldn’t—do.”

Mr. Jogger should. Definitely.

“Hey, how’d you like to go down to the adult beach? It’s just past the mangroves.”

Must be on to the pitching wedges. That’s when golf really gets exciting.

No sign of jogger. She checked her watch.

“Are you hungry?”

He looked up.

“Yeah.”

She sat up, felt around for her sandals.

“Let’s grab a couple of Singapore Slings, an hors d’oeuvre plate, sit in our hot tub, have a party.”

“What’s on the hors d’oeuvre plate?

She had studied the to-go menu last night. She tossed down the last of her Bahama Mama.

“The super-duper plate is called The Deep-Sea Mariner.” She closed her eyes, spread her toes. “Oysters on the half shell, homemade crackers, grilled lobster tail, angels on horseback—that’s an oyster wrapped in bacon then grilled—an assortment of Danish cheeses, homemade French bread—plus lots of tropical fruits: papaya, three kinds of mango, pineapple, star fruit, kiwi. And, to top it off, a bunch of fresh fruit mini-tarts.”

“Sounds like a feast.” He closed the golf book, set it next to him on the hammock. “And what was that about the adult beach and wearing a thong?”

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Ankle Bracelet By Ty Vossler

It was an early October Friday afternoon in Puebla, Mexico—overcast as I recall. Lucia’s lover rested on his elbows above her, his fingers stroking the side of her face as they kissed.

She reached down and I read her lips, “Get inside.” He lifted my wife’s knees and I watched as he pressed down and in. Through the thin walls of the adjoining room, I heard their pleasure. On the laptop I saw how they looked into each other’s eyes, and kissed slowly as he began stroking back and forth.

Love is a quilt—covers what you don’t wish to see. Twelve years of marriage comfort, trust, and the resulting apathy had caused me to overlook obvious signs of cheating. Even now, with my heart in my throat and jealousy gnawing at my guts, I wanted her more than ever.

Her lover lifted her petite foot to suck on a red-polished big toe, and there it was, the ankle bracelet. It was jingling against his hand as he wetted his length in her pussy. The ankle bracelet should have been a dead giveaway. The spiky new hairstyle, the expensive Weight Watchers diet, her sexy new clothes, the twice-a-month, I’ll be late tonight, routine—bells and whistles, hammers over the head and all overlooked by yours truly.

The detective’s fees were reasonable. Lucia and her lover routinely rented a room at the same motel and it was a snap for him to install wireless micro-video cameras—one in the light above the bed, another on the television that faced it. A hundred bucks guaranteed that the clerk put them in that room. Another fifty got me the room next door.

There was no audio because of the danger with feedback noise. Yet, the paper-thin walls allowed me to perceive the bass and treble of their lovemaking. Tiny cameras saw everything and recorded it to my laptop—live streaming on two windows.

Lucia rolled on top and straddled him facing away. He spread her ass cheeks and her hands rested on his hips, mouth formed an O. He arched to synchronize with her dancing hips. She wet two fingers and found her tiny clitoris. He licked a middle finger and slowly insinuated it up her ass, which stirred Lucia into a sudden frenzy. She climaxed powerfully and he answered with a primitive growl, saturating my wife with spunk. I heard the ankle bracelet tinkling through the wall.

A throbbing hard-on accompanied the rock in my throat. Lucia leaned back on his chest as he twisted her dark brown nipples and played his fingers up and down her belly. I ignored the omens—high beams in my face, an air horn in my ear, fists drumming against my stubborn temples. The image of Lucia resting on top is transferred to the memory stick. It’s hard to imagine that, inches away, he has slipped out and now they are lying side-by-side. There is a sizable circle of moisture on the comforter. If I need DNA, there’s more than enough.

I could almost feel the heat of their bodies through the wall. They were talking—perhaps he was telling her how great she felt and she’s telling him what a mess he made. She excused herself to the bathroom, where she would push his seed out into the cold water of the toilet. He rested with his arms behind his neck until she returned. They snuggled again and she closed her eyes. Lucia likes to nap after sex.

He can’t sleep. He has my beautiful, naked wife lying next to him. He touched her lightly on the back with his fingertips—kissed her shoulder and neck until it was clear to Lucia the time had come for the obligatory follow-up. Lucia’s battery takes longer to recharge, yet she went along with it. He rolled on top and slipped in easily. She said something to him, probably something like, this is just for you. Her hips moved and he got his rocks off rather quickly.

It’s all on a memory stick. When they leave, the detective will remove his equipment, I’ll make a payment and his next job will be making contact with Lucia’s lover to show him still shots. The lover’s name is Alfonso. He is married with two children, a boy and a girl. His family has sizable holdings in real estate, a hardware store, and a Chevy dealership. In order to avoid a scandal, he will pay dearly.

They took a quick shower. Knowing that her cell phone was still turned off, I sent a text. After they had dressed, she sat on the bed and turned it on and saw, INBOX (1) how was it? She sat up straight and typed rapidly. He watched, running a leisurely finger down the crack of her ass. My phone vibrated. Her reply, INBOX (1): How was what?

I didn’t answer and watched her fidgeting. She’s having doubts, wondering if the jig is up. I have the answer on a stick. Soon the answer will be added to my personal bank account minus the detective’s twenty percent.

He says something and she shakes her head. He must have seen the look on her face. As they walked passed my room I heard him ask, “Do you want to grab a bite?”

“No, I really need to get home,” she answered.

The rest of the conversation trailed down the musty hallway.

I picked our daughter, Rita, up from daycare and we drove to the tiny local zoo. I texted Lucia where we were and she wrote, Ok, Mua!  Later she tried to call but I didn’t answer. I imagined her pacing, squiggling in a chair and staring out the window. I gave her plenty of time to ruminate and stew in the juices of guilt. Sometimes the best answer is none.

Rita and I stayed longest at the monkey habitat. They were swinging, chasing each other around and Rita was laughing. They groomed each other and she thought that was funny too. The stick was stowed in my shirt pocket.

# # #

A candlelight dinner was waiting when Rita and I returned. Lucia was wearing my favorite black dress.

“What’s the occasion?”

“I just wanted to surprise you,” she replied.

I’ve had enough of surprises, I thought. “You look nice,” I said.

“Are you okay?”

“Fine, a little tired.”

Dinner was perfect and Lucia was perfect. As we cleared the dishes, she spontaneously kissed me at the kitchen sink. The hours crept along. The stick was tucked away in my socks drawer. Rita was in bed by 8:00 probably dreaming of monkeys and Lucia was showering again.

I connected the stick to the flat screen, pressed play and watched Lucia walk into the room with her lover. They stopped at the edge of the bed for a kiss. Did she love this man I wondered? Is this the end of us? Now her lover was lifting her skirt, sliding down her panty—she sits on the bed and he buries his head between her thighs.

Lucia was still showering, probably standing beneath the water with her eyes closed. What will happen with Rita if we’re through? It isn’t fair that children suffer for their parent’s mistakes.

Alfonso is balanced on his elbows for a traditional start, fingers stroking the side of her face as they kiss. Then they entered a new world together—one I have visited many times with Lucia.

The shower is still running. Perhaps Lucia is weighing her involvement with this man, getting a grip on the implications. Why did she need this? How did she meet this clown, this Alfonso? The detective said that her lover taught economics class at the university.

The ankle bracelet was jingling against Alfonso’s hand as he fucks my wife. Her eyes are closed and her mouth is open. She hooks her ankles around his back. I watch the two windows, a Birdseye and at bed-level view.

The shower is turned off. I ejected the stick and hid it among my socks again. Then I slipped under the covers before Lucia came in. I watched her apply various creams and lotions—products designed to keep her looking young. She saw me gazing at her and interpreted it to mean that she had a wifely duty to perform.

“Do you want to make me dirty?” She is still wearing the ankle bracelet. We’ve never fucked with it on.

“Okay,” I replied.

“You’ll need jelly,” she advises, pulling down her pajama bottom, taking just one leg out and walking to the bed.

“All right,” I reached into the drawer of the nightstand for the tube and put a smidgen on the tip of my cock.

“This is just for you,” she advised.

As I lifted her legs by the ankles the bracelet jingled. She winced as I pushed inside, still tender from her afternoon. After a few minutes, I spurted heavily. There was always a roll of toilet paper on the lamp-stand and I handed her a wad.

She returned to the bathroom for a while and then rejoined me. When the lamp was clicked off it grew dark and silent.

“What did you mean today when you wrote, how was it?” She asked.

I allowed another pregnant pause. Silence is cruel, “I don’t remember.”

She gave me a dry-toast kiss, “Goodnight darling.”

I don’t know how this will pan out. I need time to process my feelings. The stick is my trump card and even before the hush money is transferred into my account, I will need to study it over and over before I decide.

Nightcap By Ty Spencer Vossler‏

Mexico City has just about anything you’re not looking for. Lucia had been many times— had lived in the ghetto of Colonia Guadalupe Chalma as a child. She didn’t care much for the broad-shouldered city—too fast and aggressive. Given her past it was a miracle that she added Doctor to the front of her name. Lucia specialized in Topology—a branch of algebra so intangible that few women dare to swim its abstract waters. Lucia was in Mexico City to sit on a Masters exam panel.

She spent leisurely hours in the hotel room, resting, reading, and channel surfing. Flipping through options she paused at an advertisement for a blues concert at the convention center across the street. She walked to the balcony window and saw the billboard: Smokey Harris—One Night Only. Lucia owned several of his CD’s. On the announcement Smokey Harris stood tall and handsome—posing with his signature hand-made guitar. She thought to check if tickets were still available, yet felt too lazy. She returned her attention to the television.  Smokey was singing a sad tune—eyes closed, swaying and lost in the music.

After a short nap Lucia showered and dressed in an embroidered gold and black Indian blouse, partnered with a pleated ankle-length skirt. As an afterthought she wore an ankle bracelet with semi-precious stones and tiny brass chimes that tinkled when she walked. She took an elevator down to the restaurant, sat in a dark corner, ordered a glass of white wine and a chef salad. With few other diners to distract she was soon covering a napkin with new Topology ideas. Shaking free for a moment, she reminded herself to call home.

Lucia was mother to a beautiful Four-year-old—married to an American writer she’d met by chance many years earlier. They’d lived in the States for nine years before moving to Mexico.

A lot of water under the bridge, she thought. Having Rita changed their lives. Her passion for Wyler was gradually replaced by her focus on Rita. They talked about how the fire was reduced to embers—yet Rita was worth any sacrifice.

# # #

Lucia’s focus changed when Smokey Harris and two others sat nearby. They didn’t appear to take notice of her—yet as he perused the menu, Smokey looked up, smiled and winked at her.

“Buenos tardes.”

Lucia returned his smile with a corrected, “Buenos noches.”

He glanced at his watch and nodded, “So it is, so it is.”

After a waiter took his order, Smokey whispered something and gave a nod in her direction. The other men at the table shook their heads. A few minutes later a bottle of Dom Perignon arrived to Lucia’s table.

“From the gentleman,” the waiter gestured.

Taking his cue, Smokey walked over. His friends stayed put—one said, “You too much, man.”

“I took a risk that you might like Champagne,” he began.

She smiled, “An expensive risk, Mr. Harris.”

“Blues fan?”

“And jazz too. I’ve heard you play both.”

“You know baby—jazz is just blues that’s tumbled down some stairs.”

Champagne traveled up her nose and she coughed as she laughed. Smokey patted her back and then rubbed the back of her neck.

“Thank you,” she said.

“You had me a little worried—thought I’d have to do some mouth-to-mouth.”

Lucia smiled and a swallowed some water.

“Coming to the show tomorrow night?”

She shook her head, “No—I don’t have a ticket.”

“Too late—all sold out,” he reached into his front shirt pocket, “but there’s ways around that.” He presented her with a ticket.

“Oh, that’s very nice of you, thank you.”

“That’ll put you front and center and get you backstage after the show. “

She touched a hand to her heart, “I don’t know what to say.”

“How ‘bout sharing some bubbly with ol’ Smokey?”

The waiter brought another flute without being asked.

“Here’s to beautiful Mexican women,” he raised his glass adding, “pretty lady, you got a million-watt smile.”

They touched glasses and sipped.

The getting-to-know-you chitchat ensued.  She was teaching in Acapulco and last year he’d played on a cruise ship that stopped there.

“I watched those cliff divers,” he said. “That’s some scary shit.”

He learned that she was married and had a daughter. She discovered that he was between relationships—father of two sons from previous marriage.

Lucia’s salad arrived and Smokey leered at it with one eye closed.

“That all you havin’?”

“I’m not very hungry.”

She nibbled her salad while he waited for his steak.

“How’d you get cozy with the blues pretty lady?”

“I don’t remember—college I think. I like the sadness and passion—how the songs tell stories.”

“That’s right they do, and you know what?”

“What?”

“You gonna leave me with some bitter blues if you don’t join me for a nightcap—might even play a song or two.”

“What is a nightcap?” She wasn’t familiar with the word.

“Last drink folks have before they call it a night.”

“Oh,” she nodded, “yes, and I’d like very much to hear you play.”

“Great.”

After dinner he signed for the tab and proffered Lucia the crook of his arm.

“Shall we?”  He paused briefly to introduce her to his friends, who stood.

“Dorsey,” the first man said, “it’s a pleasure to meet you.”

“Everett,” introduced the other, “you folks have yourself a nice evening. Don’t keep him out too late, young lady,” he wagged a finger.

“Later brothers,” the three men shared a special handshake. Smokey escorted Lucia to the elevator.

“Dorsey, Everett and me—we’ve been playing together since we were kids. Our first band was, The Smoking Lizards.”

# # #

He had rented an entire suite, replete with a lighted fountain in the living room. He flipped on the lights and rotated a knob to dim them down.

“My goodness,” she managed as she watched the fountain spring to life.

“There’s another one in the bedroom.” He kicked off his shoes, “Make yourself at home.”

Lucia lifted her legs to remove her sandals.

Smoky led her into the bedroom.

“This’s where I keep Baby Blue—my guitar.”

The bedroom fountain was a sculpted mermaid, emptying water from a giant shell into a waiting pond. A full bar took up space beneath a flat-screen television hanging on the wall.

“What can I get you?” He asked.

“Nothing for me, thank you—the champagne was enough.”

He gestured to the bedroom fountain, “Doubles as a Jacuzzi—feels real nice after a concert. I always get this room when I play here.”

The over-sized bed was covered with bright throw pillows and his acoustic guitar was leaned against a nightstand. He reached for it and motioned for Lucia to sit next to him on the bed.

“This song’s for a beautiful flower called Lucia,” and he began playing.

His fingers lifted, pressed and wiggled changing mere notes into his signature style of play. His song was about a woman he’d given his soul to—only to be left twisting. He played with eyes closed, peeking at Lucia now and again until the final note resonated, and faded.

“That was so beautiful,” she smiled.

“Let you in on a little secret,” he answered, “right this moment—nothing in this world’s as beautiful as you.”

Lucia didn’t resist when he touched her face, and kissed her. His lips were soft and she returned it with the tip of her tongue. The moist sound of subsequent kisses made her lightheaded. His lips journeyed to the bird’s nest of her throat—to her ear—delicate, slow kisses that made her wet. His strumming hand slipped up beneath her blouse to rub her smooth brown back. Then, with a deft twist of thumb and forefinger he released the catch and her tits sprang forward.

Lifting the front of her blouse he trapped a brown nipple with his front teeth. Lucia combed her fingers through his hair as he suckled.

“Beautiful,” he whispered easing her to her back. His tongue traveled to the softness of her belly. She lifted when his fingers hooked inside the waistband of her skirt and panties.

“Sweet Jesus,” he groaned as he peeled them down, “the Garden of Eden.”

Smokey knelt to spread her pussy lips with his thumbs—flicking his tongue over the hooded flesh of her tiny pearl. She responded with a melodious moan and thrust against him.

“Like honey,” he said, pausing to slipped out of his pants. Lucia gawked at his thick, attenuated cock pulsing like a separate animal. He returned, licking, sliding a long, tapered index finger inside and curling it upward.

“Ayyy, get inside,” she gasped, “Huh-huh-huh!”

Smokey scooted until his bulbous tip touched her outer pedals. Caressing up and down until it glistened—he slowly pushed inside. Lucia stiffened and then shivered with pleasure as her pussy sheathed his broad shaft.

“We’ll take it nice and easy, baby—that’s right—nice and slow.”

When his entire length was wetted, Lucia moaned, spread wider and squeezed his lower arms. He cupped his hands under her knees to lift them over his shoulders.

He saw that her pussy lips were stretched taut around his thickness. He gazed into Lucia’s almond-shaped eyes—glazed with passion—loved how she inhaled so deeply when he was slipping in, followed by a deep, satisfied groan when he was in all the way. She dug her heels into his shoulder blades as he moved. When he bent to suck a nipple she unhooked her legs and brought them around his back to set a counter-rhythm with her hips.

Her first orgasm surprised him with its intensity—rhythmic muscular contractions, desperate cries.

“That’s right baby,” he said as he pushed through each successive spasm.

“Oh-oh-oh—ayyy—ohhh, ayyy!” Her sea-gull cries filled the bedroom.

She twitched and squeezed around his cock as Smokey stroked relentlessly—kissing and suckling until another one took hold. She thrashed beneath him, lifting her ass, clasping his shoulders and rubbing her calves over his back.

She’s playing her song, he thought. Each woman he’d been with had her own distinct way. Lucia’s song was original and lovely to the ear.

Smoky plunged to the hilt, balls leaping.

“Jesus—awww,” he growled as he spurt, “awww—shit—aw-aw-awww!”

# # #

For a long while after he stayed inside—kissing her tenderly. The impressive size of his cock afforded the luxury of staying inside until he was ready to leave. When he finally did, the wet sounds of compressed air were followed by a splurge of semen.

His ebony cock was glazed and Lucia’s dark snatch was matted with leavings. Smokey hummed an appreciative, “Mm-mm-mm” and thought he’d never seen anything so wonderful in all his life.

Breathing slowed—the bluesman leisurely nibbled and left a mark on the skin around her nipple. Lucia felt so sensitive that she thought the slightest breeze would make her cum again. Her knees were still lifted and she rubbed a foot lazily over his hips. They smiled at the same time.

“That husband of yours is one lucky buck—waking up to a smile like that every morning.”

“You make love like you play guitar,” she answered.

Smokey kissed her.  She smelled like cinnamon and sex. He had cried out for Jesus when he spurted. Must be a reason for that, he thought. Almighty must know that the secret to heaven on Earth is written between the parentheses of a pussy.

A short time later Smoky was ready to play another song and this one lasted much longer.

# # #

The next night Lucia phoned home before she walked to the concert. Smokey sent her a large bouquet of roses.

After the concert he welcomed her backstage with open arms, yet she saw he was already hooked up with another fan. Undoubtedly she would soon enjoy a free concert. Lucia was okay with that. She’d come to Mexico City without expectations and been privy to Smokey’s most intimate song—oh-so-sweet. Her memories would travel away from this city along with a pressed rose.

As she turned to leave Dorsey caught her by the elbow.

“Hey Lucia—where you goin’ girl?  I was hopin’ you’d hang around, join me later for a little nightcap.”