It had been a cold rainy day, the kind that made you want to look out the window with your forehead pressed against the glass, staring out and trying to find patterns in the grey clouds. The kind of cold that inspired hot cups of tea and long books.

Thinking of tea inspired other kinds of thoughts that Alice most certainly didn't want to think about, so she firmly put away the kettle she had just taken out. "None of THAT, thank you very much." She said out loud. But still, there were remnants of possibly drinking tea with him..."Enough!" Alice decided. She had told him that she wanted to be friends with him, and friends didn't have lingering thoughts and feelings about their other friends, or so she told herself.

Alice rolled her eyes to herself. She realized she was still standing in her kitchen, hand on the cupboard that housed her kettle. Standing around was certainly not going to fix anything, so she decided to take a bath. That always soothed her, and would certainly warm her up as well as any cup of tea, shared or not, would.

As water thundered into the tub, Alice undressed in her bedroom. She tied her hair up into a bun, with more than a few tendrils falling out, and then more came out as she walked to the tub. She tested the water with her hand, then added scented oils before getting in.

She sank below the water line, inhaling the gentle scents of the oil. She had recently decided to try a new kind, and so far she liked it. The bottle had advertised that it had the scent of 'rain and wildflowers', but the flowers weren't very strong, she decided. The cool, fresh scent of the air after a thunderstorm overpowered the subtle flowers. Her eyes slowly drifted shut as she allowed herself to calm down. That peace was short lived however, as she recalled one of her encounters with him. She had smelled this exact perfume before, when she had been pulled close to his chest as he saved her from the falling billiard table. Her eyes popped open and she glared at the water. "Why can't I..." She trailed off. It had been decided, he had stopped pursuing her, she had gotten exactly what she wanted.

Sure you did. The little voice in her head reminded her. And since you got what you wanted, you no longer have to deal with him. His scent, his eyes, his hands, none of it. Thinking of his hands did give her pause. They were so strong and capable looking, she could only imagine what they would look like as they did his work.

Her own hands floating idly by her side, she thought about the art of hat-making. She had never really seen it done, she realized. She knew the basics of sewing (A long running embroidery class when she was a girl has left her with some knowledge of the craft), but not enough for her to be familiar with his work. However, she could imagine his hands running along pieces of felt, feeling for where the cuts were needed. Without thinking about it, her hands began to drift along her thighs, feeling the smooth skin.

She continued thinking about his hands as she began to explore her body. His hands were so strong, she realized. Masculine in a way she wasn't truly familiar with. So much of him was this way – she caught herself noticing it in small ways. His height, his voice...all so different from anything she was used to.

Her hands moved more easily over her oil softened skin, and she felt the swell of her hips blossom. That was certainly something Reginald didn't have, she reflected. She pictured how he had looked in the suit he had worn to the dance – it was fitted in such a way his...ahem, assets were displayed nicely.

Her hands continued to roam her body, moving up over her stomach and onwards. She continued to think of his strong hands as she felt the fullness of her breasts. A small sigh escaped her mouth as she cupped herself.

His eyes were another thing, she idly thought. So bright, and piercing in a way she had never seen in another man. A shiver racked through her as she recalled their conversation from a few weeks ago.

Nor do I keep you awake at night. Rather, it seems to be the other way around.

Oh, on the contrary...You do.

The thought of him thinking about her in the late hours of the night filled her belly with heat. Unconsciously, her hands left her breasts and slipped down her stomach to that secret place between her thighs.

She continued to picture his eyes as she began to explore that spot. How they seemed to glow at times, and how when he stared at in that way her brain seemed to fizzle out on the spot. As her fingers began to move more swiftly, she began to think in a half focused way if he saw her eyes like that. If he ever thought about her hands in this way.

Her breath began to hitch slightly as she continued to reflect on his actions over the times they had spent together. How he seemed to always want to have his hands on her, how he seemed to always be standing slightly too close for comfort.

A thought began to come in waves as her breath began to get faster and her fingers continued to move against herself. She couldn't quite grasp the thought (her brain was seeming to fizzle out again) but she let it ride on the waves of her mind.

I wonder what his hands would feel like in this place. She gasped aloud as that thought raced through her mind. Her mind began to race with similar ideas (He would feel so strong, it would be overpowering, it would make me feel so hot) as she continued to touch herself, fingers moving faster and faster.

Her last comprehensible thought was What if he does this thinking of me? Her body clenched around nothing, feeling a deep ache inside. As fiery warmth rushed through her, her back arched against the tub, and she felt her fingers fluttering in an ineffective way. Her mouth opened as she let out the cry, "Oh, Reginald!" Her mind went blank, with only images of him pressing against her closed eyes.

Slowly she came back to herself. The parts of her that were not submerged in water were damp with sweat, and she was breathing hard. Her insides still clenched against nothing, and she sank down into the tub, hoping to soothe the feeling.

I am in so much trouble. She thought glumly as the water cooled around her.