Author: rahleeyah PM
When Brenda meets Sharon Raydor, she finds herself remembering another woman she once knew, one who changed her life forever. Brenda/Sharon, Brenda/OFCRated: Fiction M - English - Brenda L.J. & S. Raydor - Chapters: 7 - Words: 32,080 - Reviews: 42 - Favs: 23 - Follows: 10 - Updated: 02-27-12 - Published: 01-18-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7752758
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
That summer wind was all around me
Nothing between us but the night
When I told her that I'd never
She softly whispered that's alright
And then I watched her hands of leather
Turn to velvet in a touch
There's never been another summer
When I have ever learned so much.
-"That Summer", Garth Brooks
Brenda woke late the next morning, feeling more drained after a few fitful hours' sleep than she had before she lay down. Her mind was abuzz, memories of the night before and Anna Grace's kiss making her almost dizzy. Had that really happened? She'd thought about it before, about what the older woman's lips might feel like pressed against her own, how comforting it might be to reach out and twine her slender fingers with Anna Grace's work-calloused ones. That such a thing might actually happen had seemed too much to hope for, but then it had, and Brenda found herself utterly lost, a ship without a rudder.
Her mind kept going back to the look on Anna Grace's face. Anna rarely let her emotions show so plainly, but for the briefest of instants Brenda had seen horror there. Was she really so awful? Could Anna really be so disgusted with what they'd done? It had been Anna who initiated the kiss, after all. Brenda had only meant to hug her, to thank her for the record and all the other gifts that had come before it, for the salvation Anna Grace had offered her and the safe haven of Tobacco Road. And then Anna Grace had leaned across the space between them and burned up Brenda's whole word with the wildfire of her kiss.
Brenda rose finally, dressing carefully in the full morning light. Darlene had already left, for three glorious days. Before the kiss, those three days had held the promise of freedom, of time to spend with Anna Grace and no one else. Now they loomed before her, three days to spend wondering and worrying about what she'd done without even the bitter complaining of her aunt to distract her.
Blue jeans and tank top on, her bandana (a gift from Jimmy) firmly lodged in her back pocket, Brenda set off for Tobacco Toad with apprehension in her heart.
When Brenda arrived, the party was just getting started. Long tables had been set up in front of the house, loaded down with food, and a small plastic pool had been blown up, a leaking hose filling it slowly as a horde of small children eagerly waited for the chance to jump in. The boys were gathering chairs, pulling them out of the beds of pickup trucks and the building Anna Grace used for storage. Watermelons were being cut and music was coming from somewhere, but Brenda couldn't have cared less. She longed to see Anna Grace, but the woman was nowhere in sight.
Jimmy hailed her with a friendly wave and a shout of her name. She ran to him, her heart in her throat.
"Where's Anna?" She demanded, immediately feeling guilty for how short she was with him as he stared back at her.
"She's gone," he answered with a shrug. Brenda's heart sank.
"Gone?" she echoed faintly, and he nodded.
"She called me last night, said she was going and she needed me to look after the place."
"Well, where did she go?" Brenda was trying her best not to cry.
"I don't know."
"When is she coming back?"
Jimmy was staring at her, clearly confused by her distress. "I don't know, Brenda Leigh. She's just gone."
One of the tears Brenda had been trying to hold back slid down her check, getting lost in the thin tracks of sweat there.
"I don't understand," she said softly, her voice sounding as broken as she felt. "It's just not like her."
Jimmy smiled sadly. "Oh, Brenda Leigh, this is exactly like her."
The old man led the girl up to the front porch with a gentle hand on her elbow. She collapsed into one of the rocking chairs, and he sat down beside her with a sigh.
"I've known Anna Grace since she was a girl, younger than you," Jimmy said, his melancholic tone seeming oddly out of place with the joyous preparations in the yard beyond. "She's been running her whole life. Anna Grace left Tobacco Road when she was sixteen years old and she didn't set foot back here until her daddy died. And then she stayed, but not because she'd changed her ways. Oh no, she's still the same old Anna Grace, still running. Running away from what happened to Ray, away from her responsibilities. Did you know she has a son?"
Brenda stared back at him, dumbfounded. A son? Anna had a son? Brenda had never seen him, and Anna had never said a word about him.
Jimmy took her silence as an answer. "His name's Ray Junior. He's a good kid. He'll be twenty this year. In the Army, just like his daddy. And to tell you the truth, I think Anna was hiding all this time, from her fears and her family. I don't know where she's gone, but I hope it's to see her boy. She's got a lot to atone for."
The sunlight slanting through the tree-lined yard seemed to be mocking Brenda's pain with its cheerfulness. Anna Grace had a son, a son older than Brenda herself. Anna had left. Anna would never love Brenda the way she wanted- needed- her to.
The realization had come to Brenda at some point during the long, difficult night. Brenda loved Anna Grace, and she wanted nothing so much as to be loved in return. The thoughts of it had consumed her even before she knew what to call them, and giving them a name had only made them worse.
"What about me?" Brenda asked sadly, shocked that she'd actually spoken the words aloud.
Jimmy for his part didn't seem surprised at all. His cloudy blue eyes saw a lot more than anyone ever gave him credit for.
"You'll be all right, Brenda Leigh," he told her. "We'll have a party, and you'll forget your troubles, and in a few weeks you'll be back home where you belong and Tobacco Road will be nothing but a memory."
Brenda really did cry then, burying her face in her hands, and Jimmy laid a gentle hand on her shoulder. It was the smallest measure of comfort, but it was the only comfort available to her, and she was grateful for it.
Anna Grace was gone.
By the time the sun went down, the children were huddled sleepily in the truck beds and everyone was at least half drunk. The bonfire burned vigorously, the moonshine was running dangerously low, and the ice in the beer coolers had all melted. Brenda was sitting alone on the steps of the front porch, a Mason jar of moonshine clutched in her hands as the fireworks started up.
The first explosion of color seemed to reenergize the children, who leapt to their feet, grabbing sparklers and dancing barefoot in the grass. The night rang with laughter and the sounds of popping fireworks, the sky a blaze of color and light.
The spectacle soothed Brenda Leigh somewhat, though her heard still ached. As lights flared above her, she thought of the lightning rod of Anna's kiss, the feel of the woman's lips on her own, her hands on her waist. Brenda dearly wished she'd had more than just that one kiss, that she'd taken every other opportunity she'd had when she and Anna Grace were alone. She wondered if Anna would have stayed if she'd kissed her sooner.
Probably not, she thought miserably. It was her kiss that had sent Anna running, it was her kiss that scared the woman badly enough to send her away from Tobacco Road. Brenda took a sip of the clear liquid, noticing the hint of peach behind the burn. No one had noticed her stealing the jar in the first place, and no one noticed her now.
She kept on drinking, and the fireworks kept dancing until she felt dizzy. She must have looked just as bad off as she was, because suddenly Jimmy was there. With his help she lurched to her feet, and he led her inside the house. She thought of the deep, soft couch in the living room and smiled faintly, but Jimmy led her away, up the stairs, each step a struggle. She found herself in a room she'd never seen before, and somewhere in the back of her mind Brenda realized it must have been Anna's bedroom, but she was almost too exhausted to care. She flopped onto the bed and Jimmy smiled. He pulled the blanked up over her and brushed a curl out of her face affectionately.
"Get some sleep, little girl," he told her, and Brenda closed her eyes, body already obeying his command. "You'll feel better in the morning."
She was already asleep.
Brenda woke in the darkness with a pounding headache and a powerful need to use the bathroom. She stumbled around until she finally found it, and when she was done she splashed water on her face, straightening up to stare at herself in the mirror. Her hair was a tangled mess, her fair skin tan and ruddy from days in the sun and the heat. She had developed calluses on her hands, just like Anna Grace.
Who is this girl? She wondered, this girl who goes around kissing grown women and pretending to work on a tobacco farm? She didn't look like herself. Tobacco Road had changed her, inside and out. She rubbed her eyes, as if to rid them of the image and headed back to bed.
She stripped off her dirty blue jeans and tossed them aside, slipping her bra off and dropping it on top of them before curling up under Anna's sheets once again. She fell asleep with her face pressed against the pillow, the scent of Anna Grace's hair comforting her more than it should have.
She was roused sometime later by the soft touch of a hand against her face. She opened her eyes, blinking against the darkness to find an angel in a white tank top perched on the bed beside her.
"Anna?" she asked hopefully, voice thick with sleep, trying to focus on the overwhelming joy that filled her and to ignore the fear that lurked just behind it. Would Anna be angry to find her sleeping in her bed? Would Anna kick her out?
"Hey, Brenda Leigh," she said, her voice barely more than a whisper.
The tears were back in the corners of Brenda's eyes, all the heartache of the day and night before washing over her combined with the relief of seeing Anna again.
"You came back."
Her face must have betrayed how hurt she felt, because Anna reached out and ran a soothing over her hair, still smiling that same sad smile.
"I had to get away for a little while," Anna explained, her fingers lingering in the silky strands of Brenda's hair, "but I couldn't stay away."
I couldn't stay away. Was it possible? Could it be that Anna cared as much as Brenda did? Brenda felt she couldn't take too much more of this, the doubt, the back and forth. She needed to know. She sat up in the bed, Anna's hand slipping out of her hair to rest in the older woman's lap.
"I'm so sorry, Brenda Leigh," Anna told her, staring down at the floor. "I never should have done that."
"I wanted you to," Brenda confessed, her brown eyes searching until finally they caught Anna's gaze.
"But why? Honey, you could do so much better than me. You deserve so much better than me. I'm old enough to be your-"
Brenda didn't let her finish the sentence; she knew somehow that if she let Anna keep talking the older woman would end whatever was between them before it ever truly got started, and Brenda couldn't let her go without kissing her at least one more time. With more boldness than she actually felt she caught her fingers in Anna's thick, dark hair and pulled the older woman to her, their lips crashing together before either of them had a chance to think better of it.
Anna didn't pull away like Brenda thought she would; instead the older woman hesitated for a moment, her lips still against Brenda's, and the girl thought she could feel the wheels in Anna's head turning as she agonized over what would happen next. And then quick as a flash, Anna made up her mind, her tongue snaking out to taste Brenda's lips as her hand moved from her lap up to gently cup Brenda's face. Brenda opened to her, wanting to draw her in, to hold her as close as possible. It was hard in this position, Brenda sitting up under the covers and Anna perched just next to her, but the older woman felt even better pressed up against her now than she had the night before, and Brenda was loath to move.
"We can't," Anna whispered, breaking away with a gasp, resting her forehead against Brenda's.
It felt as though every inch of Brenda's body was on fire, begging for Anna, for her touch, her kiss, the soft sound of her voice, the feeling of her hair in Brenda's hands, every part of her, and Brenda couldn't let her stop, not now. She'd never felt this kind of urgent need before, and she didn't know what to do next. Something, anything, to keep Anna from standing up and walking away from her. She felt as if she'd die if Anna left her again.
"Yes we can," she whispered, reaching down and taking hold of the hand that still rested in Anna's lap, linking their fingers together.
"You can't possibly want me," Anna said, and there was a brokenness in her voice, a sorrow that spoke volumes. Anna believed what she was saying; somewhere along the way Anna Grace had started to believe she was the Widow Robinson, and had forgotten just how much more than that she really was.
Brenda was going to show her.
"I think you're perfect," Brenda told her, their foreheads still touching, fingers still clasped together in Anna's lap, "And I want you, more than anything."
Anna lifted their joined hands to her lips, lightly kissing the back of Brenda's hand, and leaned back slightly, smiling.
She was absolutely lovely when she smiled, brighter than the mocking sun, more joyful than all the fireworks, warmer than the heat in the fields where Brenda worked in the late afternoon; she was so much more than this place, so much bigger, so much better. Anna Grace was a world unto herself, and Brenda wanted to take up permanent residence there.
It was Anna who kissed her this time, pulling her close; Brenda rose up on her knees, following Anna's movements until it was the older woman leaning back against the headboard instead of the girl. Brenda shifted, straddling her, feeling Anna's smile under their kiss, a hint of sweetness after the bitterness of the day before.
She was actually doing it, she was actually in Anna Grace's bed, kissing her, feeling her; Brenda could touch any part of Anna Grace she wanted, could hold her, could feel her warmth for as long as she wanted. This must be love, she thought, to want something so much that it breaks you when it's gone and puts you back to together when you have it.
Anna's hands were on Brenda's hips, and Brenda longed for her to move them, to feel the gentle touch of Anna's fingers against her skin; her pants were already off, discarded by the bed when she woke earlier in the night, and she could feel the roughness of Anna Grace's blue jeans under the sensitive skin of her thighs every time she moved.
The need to breathe began to outstrip Brenda's need to kiss Anna Grace and she broke away with a gasp; Anna for her part continued to kiss, her lips mapping a path down the slope of Brenda's neck. Brenda had never gotten quite this level of attention before; she had always been a skinny thing, all knees and elbows, absurdly clumsy, and though she had recently grown out of that phase, she was still just a slip of a girl with no hips to speak of and breasts she was better at hiding than showing off. Anna Grace didn't seem to care; there was the electric spark of her lips against Brenda's skin to remind her that Anna Grace wanted her just as badly as she herself wanted the woman.
Anna's fingers shifted their hold on Brenda's hips, sliding just underneath the hem of her shirt, resting lightly on her skin, lighting Brenda on fire.
"Please," Brenda gasped into Anna's hair, her hands holding the woman's face against her neck, as close as she could be. Brenda had absolutely no idea what she was asking for, but she trusted that Anna would.
With gentle hands she lifted the hem of Brenda's shirt, pulling it easily up and over the girl's head, blonde curls cascading down around her shoulders in its wake. For a moment Brenda had to fight the urge to cover herself, to hide from the fierceness of Anna's gaze as she straddled the woman's hips, almost fully naked in front of her.
"You're so lovely, do you know that?" Anna said quietly before her lips returned to Brenda's skin, mapping a wet trail down across her collarbones. Brenda shivered, thrusting her hips down against Anna without even realizing it, her fingers tangling in the woman's hair.
And as good as it felt, it wasn't enough, because Anna was still fully clothed underneath her, most of her glorious skin covered by cloth and the darkness. "Please," Brenda said again, certain of what she wanted this time, "I want to see you." Her hands slid away from Anna's head, down towards her shirt, grabbing as much of it as she could reach in clumsy fistfuls. Anna seemed even more reticent to reveal herself than Brenda had been, but she shifted, helping Brenda pull the shirt up and off, revealing the simple white cotton sports bra she wore underneath and the crisscross patterns of old scars marking the warmth of her skin in cold, white lines.
Anna rolled them easily, pinning Brenda underneath her with an easy smile and a jean-clad thigh thrust between her legs, and Brenda moaned as she arched up, aching for her. She slid her hands along the smoothness of Anna's sides, feeling her skin gliding under her hands, the sensation exactly as amazing as she always thought it would be, and more. If Anna's kiss had been lightning then touching her skin was falling off a cliff, leaving the rest of the world behind as Brenda lost herself in nothing but the feel of skin and the throbbing of her almost-bare sex against Anna's leg.
For the most part Anna had left her breasts alone, and there was a small nagging voice in the back of Brenda's mind that couldn't help but wonder if perhaps Anna didn't like them, but then the woman's hands were on her, gently circling her nipples, tugging on the rosy buds and pulling small, satisfied sounds out of Brenda. Funny how Anna's rough, work-hardened hands felt like silk against her skin, reaching her in a way that no one's touch ever had before.
Brenda was getting the hang of this whole thing, and found the courage to make another move, this time sliding her hands along Anna's ribs until she reached the edge of the bra, tugging on it until Anna laughed and helped her pull it off. She was resplendent, dark hair tumbling in easy waves as she smiled, the tips of her nipples dragging against Brenda's chest, the feeling driving her nearly wild with want.
She had her mouth open to say please again, but Anna was one step ahead of her, sliding a hand away from her breasts and towards the waist of her panties even as she leaned forward and captured Brenda's lips in a searing, heart-wrenching kiss. Every touch of her hand, every kiss, every sound she made convinced Brenda more and more that she loved this dark-haired angel, and maybe, just maybe, Anna loved her, too.
Anna tugged her panties off, hands trailing paths of fire along the lines of Brenda's legs; Brenda wondered if they should be talking more, if there was anything to say, and as Anna's hands trailed back up her legs to her embarrassingly wet center, Brenda realized there was in fact something she needed to say.
"A-Anna," she stammered, "wait, I have to," she gasped as she felt velvet-soft fingers brush her folds, "I have to tell you-"
"What?" Anna asked, catching her lip between her teeth, her expression apprehensive as she leaned over the girl with her hand between her legs and her heart on her sleeve.
"I…I've never…" her voice trailed off, her face flushing redder than ever before, and Anna just smiled. She leaned forward, kissing Brenda gently at the corner of her mouth.
"That's all right," she answered, and Brenda believed her. Brenda always believed her.
Anna's gentle fingers were running easy circles around Brenda's clit, and the feeling was unlike any she'd ever known before. She gasped and lifted her hips, chasing after the sensation of Anna's fingers against her, wanting more, and once again, Anna anticipated her, easing one finger inside her warmth, bit by bit, until Brenda could feel the woman inside her, against her, on top of her, and deliriously Brenda thought that as soon as they were done, she was going to flip them over and fuck Anna until she screamed, just to thank her for this.
Anna added a finger and pressed down against her clit, eyes never leaving her face, watching as Brenda flew apart against her hand, shaking and gasping, tears in the corners of her eyes.
Never before in her life had Brenda ever felt anything like this, like her whole world had been shattered and put back together in a single instant, and she had no one to thank for it but Anna Grace, whose fingers were still buried inside her.
Brenda thought about saying please again but she didn't; instead she laid back, enjoying the feeling as Anna dropped soothing kisses across her neck until she had gathered her wits enough to flip them over.
The older woman laughed, a rich, earthy sound that turned Brenda's insides to mush. Brenda took the opportunity to run her hands all over the woman's skin, but she quickly found herself distracted by the rounded swells of her breasts, and paused to enjoy them. She didn't know what she was supposed to do with them, exactly; she remembered how good it had felt when Anna had touched her and she tried to do the same things, but she quickly realized it wasn't enough. She leaned forward from her vantage point atop the older woman, wrapped her lips around one of her nipples, and sucked the tender bud into her mouth.
That did the trick, apparently, as Anna's hips bucked up underneath her and the woman's fingers rose to tangle in her hair.
"Brenda, honey," she said, panting slightly, "you don't have to- I mean I don't want you to feel like-"
"I want to touch you," Brenda breathed the words against her breast, "I want to see you, and feel you, and taste your skin." She kissed a trail across to the other breast, running her hands down the woman's torso until they encountered the waistband of her jeans. "I want you," she said, "I've wanted you since the first day we met, I just didn't know that's what it was."
She unbuttoned the jeans, tugged the zipper down, and without any further ado shoved her hand straight into Anna's lacy panties.
Brenda could feel all the warmth and wet against her hand, and her eyes went wide as dinner plates when Anna moaned and thrust her hips toward the girl.
"I want to see you," Brenda whispered and Anna could only make an unintelligible sound of affirmation in response.
The girl shifted away until she was kneeling between Anna's legs, lifting them and sliding the jeans and panties down together until she finally tugged them off one elegant foot to land with a soft sound near Brenda's own pants on the floor. She adjusted Anna's legs to her own liking and leaned forward, fingers inching back towards Anna's folds. She had a vague inkling of what she was supposed to do next, and by God she was going to do the best she possibly could.
She thrust two slender fingers inside the wet sheath of Anna's sex at the same time she bit down none too gently on the curve of the woman's breast, drawing her flesh into her mouth, and Anna made a sound that was almost, but not quite, a scream. Her fingers dug bruises into Brenda's hips, but she made no move to get away, bucking her hips and writhing under Brenda's touch.
A steady stream of cursing encouragements dribbled from Anna Grace's lips as Brenda searched for the small nub of her clit, and when she found it, Anna actually did scream, clutching Brenda to her with hands and the soft muscles of her sex, drawing her in, refusing to let her go.
They lingered like that a while, touching, kissing, not speaking as the early morning sun rose behind the curtains neither of them had taken the time to close. They finally drifted off to sleep, Brenda safe and warm in the cocoon of Anna's arms and the knowledge that the woman loved her, too, even if she hadn't said it yet.
When they woke it was to the sound of people working outside the window, clearing away the debris of the day before, but neither of them was willing to rise just yet. The world beyond could wait; the world they'd made in Anna's bed was soft and warm and that was right where they stayed. Brenda was draped across Anna's chest, drawing patterns across her skin and kissing her when she felt like it, listening to Anna tell stories of all the places she'd been and all the amazing things she'd seen, and Brenda couldn't help but think how amazing her Anna Grace was, and how lucky she was to have the woman in her life.