Squire’s Isle Created by Geonn Cannon

Sex with the Ex

Summary: Molly is forced to visit Shane when a pre-ordered birthday gift arrives.

JULY 13

Molly Page raised her fist to knock, hesitated, took a step back from the door, then shook her head at her own foolishness. She knocked and then flattened her hand to smooth it over her hair. She hadn’t bothered to dress nice and her hair was pulled back into a ponytail to save the hassle of washing it, so she knew she had to look pretty ragged. Still they had seen each other at work that afternoon and Shane hadn’t been horrified at the sight of her. She couldn’t look that bad. Still, she wished she had–

Shane opened the door and Molly contorted her face into an alien’s approximation of human delight. She forced her eyes to be less wide, dialed back the width of the smile, and then nervously touched her hair again.

“Molly. Hey.”

“Hey. I hope I’m not interrupting anything…”

Shane shook her head. “No, just watching a movie. What’s up?”

“Uh, happy birthday.”

Shane grinned. “You said that at work.”

Molly nodded. “I did. I did, uh… but I didn’t give you your present.”

“Oh. Hey, you didn’t have to get me anything. We’re–”

“I know. But this is actually something I ordered back in February and I actually forgot all about it until it was delivered. So I’ve been going back and forth trying to decide if I should give it to you or just give it away or–” She pursed her lips and looked down at her shoes. “This went a lot better in my head. I was suave, I was smooth and cool…”

Shane chuckled. “Come on inside.”

“Um.” She took a moment to consider if it was a horrible idea or just a terrible one, then nodded. She figured Shane just didn’t want her to stand out on the landing to put on a show for all her neighbors. “Okay. Yeah, I can come in for a second.”

Shane stepped aside and closed the door behind her. The apartment felt exactly the same, but different. Molly hadn’t been there since the end of April when she packed up the last of her things and went to live in the apartment she was now leasing. She was glad to see Shane hadn’t completely changed everything, but at the same time it only made the absence of her stuff seem more pronounced.

“I was promised a present,” Shane said, jokingly nudging Molly’s arm.

Molly held up the hastily-wrapped gift and smiled. “You probably already got one for yourself. I mean, it’s been out for over a month, I think. But I thought maybe you wanted another one or… y-you could just donate this to Coffee Table Books if you already have it.”

Shane took the parcel and rolled her eyes. “Geez, you’re horrible at giving gifts. I’m sure I’ll love it. And it’s the thought that counts, right? Should I open it now?”

“Sure, if you want to…”

“I’ve always had a problem with delayed gratification.”

“I remember,” Molly said softly.

Shane worked her fingers under the flap of paper and worked it open, using her fingers to spread it open. “Gasp,” she said, “it’s a book. Let’s see…” She pinched it with two fingers and slid it out, like pulling a prize out of a box. She flipped it around to look at the cover and her eyes widened. “A new Neil Gaiman book? I didn’t even know he’d written a new one!”

“Really?”

“No!” She flipped it over to look at the back, beaming brightly as she scanned the picture there before looking at the cover again. “The Ocean at the End of the Lane. I love the title already. Thank you, Mols.”

“It’s, um…” She gestured. “It’s signed.”

“What?” She flipped open to the frontispiece and gasped. “Oh, my God. I don’t have any signed Gaimans.”

Molly shrugged. “He signed entire truckfuls of them. It’s not exactly rare, but–”

Shane stepped forward and put her free arm around Molly’s neck. “Thank you. This is so amazing. Thank you so much.”

“I’m glad you liked it.” As much as she enjoyed the hug, she wanted it to end as quickly as possible. Shane smelled too Shane-like, and it was making her nostalgic. But she put her hands on Shane’s waist – just a light touch, accepting the hug without assuming anything further – and turned her head to lightly kiss the shell of Shane’s ear. “I saw they had signed copies available for pre-order and I had to snatch it up. And even though we’re not together anymore, I still really wanted you to have it.”

“Thank you. It’s wonderful. I can’t wait to start reading it.”

“Well… happy birthday.” She leaned back out of the hug but left her hands on Shane’s hips. “I should probably get going…”

“You don’t have to. Unless… do you have someone waiting?”

Molly shook her head. “No.”

“Oh. I just thought… you know, a couple of weeks ago you and that woman you asked out…”

“Zoe? No. That didn’t go anywhere. She was great, but…” She wasn’t you was left unsaid, but it was obvious Shane had read between the lines. “Anyway. Uh, enjoy the book. It’s supposed to be really good, so.”

Shane rubbed Molly’s arm. “No, stay. I mean, if you don’t have other plans, I’m bored out of my mind here. I miss you.”

“You’re the one who told me to leave.”

Shane flinched. “Wow.”

“Yeah.” Molly furrowed her brow. “That was really bitchy. I’m so sorry.”

Shane stepped back. “It’s okay. It’s the truth, I guess. I only have myself to blame.” She ran her fingers over the book cover. “You can go if you want.”

“I don’t… want. I never wanted.” Shane looked up. Molly started to speak again, but Shane cut her off by stepping forward and kissing her.

Molly didn’t react at first, not by closing her eyes or even moving her hands. Soon, though, her body remembered the motions and she relaxed, tilting her head so that her lips slid across Shane’s and found a more comfortable arrangement. Their tongues became reacquainted, and Shane twisted and stretched to deposit the book on the counter. Once her hands were free she reached up and grabbed the back of Molly’s hoodie, and Molly straightened her arms so it could be removed more easily.

Once it hit the floor, Molly began undoing the buttons of Shane’s blouse from the bottom up, letting it hang off her like a cape when she pushed her hands inside. Her palms molded perfectly to the contours of Shane’s bra and she moaned into the kiss as Shane reached up and pulled Molly’s hair free from the tie. They struggled like fighters, Molly urging Shane back toward the couch as Shane got freed from her shirt and tossed it aside. Molly toed off her shoes and kicked them out of the way.

They tumbled onto the couch, with Shane scrambling backward so she could be propped up by the opposite arm as Molly knelt between her legs. Molly peeled her T-shirt off and Shane spread her fingers over her stomach before moving lower to the button of her jeans.

“This is a bad idea,” Shane said.

“Oh, hell yeah.”

“Just so we’re on the same page.” She yanked the jeans open, getting a grunt of protest from the zipper, then pulled Molly down on top of her. One of Shane’s feet was still on the floor, her other pressed against the back of the couch, and Molly held them apart as she settled her weight against the point where they came together. Shane rolled her eyes back in her head as Molly rocked forward.

Shane cupped the back of Molly’s head. “We should–” They kissed, and Shane arched her hips up to meet Molly’s thrusts. “–stop.”

“Stop?” Molly said, already pulling back.

“I didn’t mean…” Shane retrieved her and they kissed again, moaning as Shane wrapped her legs around Molly to keep her from leaving again. After the near-disastrous miscommunication they both decided to shut up for the time being, communicating in grunts and moans, guiding hands to where they needed to be until the floor between the couch and coffee table was littered with discarded clothing. Molly was still wearing her socks, but neither wanted to take the effort to peel them off.

Shane rolled onto her stomach, dug her knees into the cushions, and craned her neck back to meet Molly’s for another kiss. Molly reached her hand between Shane’s legs and pressed with two fingers, and Shane arched her back with a cry of pleasure. “Way too long,” she gasped, rolling her head forward and letting it hang as she pressed back against Molly’s hips. Molly’s toes curled as she buried her face in Shane’s hair, inhaling deeply the scent she’d spent the last few months trying to find on her pillow.

“You smell amazing…”

“You feel amazing.”

Molly smiled and closed her eyes, knowing that this was a gift to her; it was a memory made real, a chance to memorize all the things she was missing. They never had break-up sex, never took the opportunity for one last hurrah. Molly knew this was the chance, the only chance she would have to memorize the way Shane felt underneath her, the texture of her skin, the taste of her sweat. She listened for the “Ha-huh-huh” that Shane almost always did at some point during their lovemaking, watched for the fluttering eyelashes that revealed she was close. She used two fingers and Shane went rigid underneath her.

“Mols…”

Molly whispered Shane’s name in her ear, and Shane tilted her head back and cried out with a shudder.

“I l…” Molly literally bit the tip of her tongue to stop the rest of it from coming out, pressing her face into the curve of Shane’s neck before she said, “I lost control a little bit, I think.”

“I think we both did.” Shane was out of breath as she dropped flat onto the couch, twisting underneath Molly until they were facing each other again. She spread her legs and Molly sank onto her with the ease of long practice. Shane reached up and stroked Molly’s hair away from her face, smiling as she bit her bottom lip.

“Happy birthday to me.”

Molly grinned. “I didn’t come over here planning for this to happen.”

“I know. I saw the underwear you had on.” She let her hands fall to Molly’s shoulders and she gave them a squeeze. “Are you sorry it–”

“No! God, no. You have no idea how much I’ve missed you.”

Shane raised an eyebrow. “I think I got an inkling…”

Molly grinned and blushed.

“I’ve missed you too, Mols. In fact… get up.”

Molly pushed herself up and settled on her knees as Shane freed herself and slid onto the floor. She put her hands on Molly’s thighs and eased them apart as she wet her lips with sensual sweeps of her tongue.

“Shane, you don’t have to–”

“Hey! It’s my birthday. I should get dessert.”

Molly’s only argument was a weary groan, and she slid forward on the couch as Shane bent forward. She brought her legs up and hooked her toes on the edge of the coffee table just as she had the night she got so hot and bothered watching a Keira Knightley movie. Shane put her arms around Molly’s legs and bowed her head, and Molly closed her eyes. Shane started slow, almost as if she was trying to get used to the practice, but soon she was back in racing form. Molly was soon trembling with the effort to hold herself back, close to the edge as soon as Shane’s tongue touched her but eager for this moment to last as long as possible.

She dropped her hand to Shane’s head and began stroking her hair. “God yes. Oh, God, I missed this…”

Shane moaned and Molly nearly lost control as the vibrations passed through her tongue and into her clit. Shane changed her angle of approach, dragging her bottom lip down and utilizing the flattened surface of her tongue as she brought up one curled finger to rub against Molly’s folds. When she pushed one inside, Molly finally let herself go.

Afterward, when her reasoning returned and she realized what they had done, they were curled up naked on the couch with just Molly’s discarded hoodie draped over their waists.

“I don’t… think this means anything,” Molly said. “If you were worried. I’m taking it at face value and I’m not trying to pin anything on it.”

Shane stayed quiet for a moment, her finger toying with Molly’s navel. “Have you been seeing Zoe?”

“No. I mean, we went out a couple of times but we didn’t really click.” She neglected to say that the only thing they had in common was sex. They’d gone to bed together after their second date and it was fun. But it wasn’t the same as it was with Shane. “If you’re worried about this being unfaithful or–”

“No. I didn’t think that. You would never do that.”

Molly stroked Shane’s bare back. “I don’t know. If I had a chance to be with you, I might cheat on Angeline Jolie.”

Shane chuckled. “Hell, you hook Angie, we’ll have a threesome.”

Molly laughed. “So what were you getting at? Are you seeing someone?”

“No. Not since you.” She sniffed. “I haven’t even looked at another woman. And to be honest, when you told me about Zoe, I almost flipped out and told you to ignore her. But I told you to accept because it wasn’t fair.” She sniffed again, and this time she rubbed her hand under her nose. “I know why we broke up. I didn’t want you to dive into marriage before you were ready. I didn’t want you to get stuck with the first woman you slept with after coming out. But I’ve been looking for a really long time, Molly, and the truth is you’re the one I see myself ending up with. I just wish you were a little more… experienced.”

Molly dragged her fingers along Shane’s spine and made her shake. “What’s so important about experience?”

“I don’t know. But when you proposed to me, it was like… someone proposing to their high school girlfriend on graduation.”

“People get married to their high school crushes all the time.”

“And people get divorced all the time, and they get bored and stray. I don’t want that to happen to us.”

Molly pushed herself up and looked down at Shane. “Do you still love me?”

Shane brought Molly’s hand up to her lips and kissed her knuckles. “I never stopped loving you, Molly.”

“And I still love you. Even if I went out and got on a lesbian version of The Bachelorette and had twenty different women vying for me, I’d still want you. I don’t want something different, and I don’t want anyone else. You told me to look around, well I did. And everywhere I looked was Not You. I saw dozens of women whose only flaw was that they weren’t you. So maybe I’m not a lesbian, maybe I’m not straight, maybe I’m just designed so that I would fall for you. I’ve never worked with anyone as smoothly as I do with you. Even after the breakup, you and I kept on going like a machine. When we started dating it was just like everything falling into place. I can’t imagine finding someone I’m more comfortable with or that I trust more, so why waste time trying? I mean… are you happy?”

Shane looked away but Molly still saw the tears in her eyes. Finally, meekly, she said, “No. I’m fucking miserable.”

Molly put her hand on Shane’s cheek. “Then let me come back. I love you, Shane. I won’t talk about marriage anymore if it makes you uncomfortable, but I just want to be with you. And if you think I still need experience or to sew my oats, and if I find someone who intrigues me, maybe we can have… an arrangement or something.”

“What kind of an arrangement?”

“An open relationship. If I ever feel like the grass is greener somewhere else, we discuss it and I… explore. Or we explore. All I know is that I’m not willing to risk you for the possibility there’s some mythical ‘something better’ waiting out there. It’ll be like an insurance policy.”

Shane glanced toward the ceiling as she pondered it. “So we would be together…”

“With the option of maybe someday having a threesome with some fictional woman to be named later.”

“I let you go to be selfless, Molly. You need… you need to make sure you’re sure before you lock yourself down with someone.”

“I don’t. I really, really don’t. I know how I feel about you, and I know how it feels to live without you. I can’t imagine anyone else making me feel this way. Please. Take me back.” She had sworn this wouldn’t happen when she drove over, but now that she was in waist-deep she didn’t want to fight her way out.

Shane sighed wearily. “If I say yes, it’ll sound so selfish…”

“If you can’t be selfish on your birthday, when can you?”

Shane smiled and ran her hand over Molly’s hip. “This is the best I’ve felt in weeks. I didn’t even realize how hard it was to breathe until just now.”

Molly’s heart soared, but she had to hear the words. “So…”

“Stay the night.”

Molly grinned and kissed her, and Shane cupped Molly’s face in her hands. They kissed for a while, moving against each other until the hoodie trying to protect their nudity slumped to the floor in defeat. Shane pinned Molly to the cushions and pushed herself up, blowing gently to displace the curls that had fallen in Molly’s face.

“Just so you know, hon… this counts as my Christmas present, too.”

Molly grinned. “That’s the real reason I came over. To save myself some shopping.”

Shane bent down and kissed the corners of Molly’s mouth. “Will you read the Gaiman book to me?”

“Yes, I will.”

“Will you act out the sexy bits?”

Molly said, “I don’t think there are any sexy bits. But I’ll make some up and act those out for you.”

“Good enough.”

They eventually took the book into the bedroom. Though they ended up not reading a word of it, they did make up for the time they had lost.

They also, by Molly’s estimate, took care of birthdays and Christmases for the next three years.

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