If you were to die unexpectedly, tomorrow say, under the wheels of a bus, what would be your biggest regret? The one thing you did that you wish you hadn’t? Or perhaps the bucket list fantasy you never got around to doing? Think about it. And then go and deal with it. Because you never what’s coming, just around the corner.
Those are the opening lines of my story, “Before the Bus Comes…”, in Cheyenne Blue’s latest anthology First: Sensual Lesbian Stories of New Beginnings. It’s the story of Red – fresh out of a bad relationship and ready to explore another side of her sexuality. As a writer, there are some stories you just write and send off, happy to move on to the next project, and there are stories that, for some reason or other, you become very fond of. This is one of those stories, so I was really thrilled when Cheyenne gave it a home in her anthology. It’s out today and I’m proud to be sharing pages with Annabeth Leong, Harper Bliss, Sacchi Green, Vanessa de Sade, Jillian Boyd and many more.
Dive into these fifteen sizzling tales of lesbian love and romance and experience the wonder, the joy, and the magic of new beginnings.
A woman sees her lover for the first time after years of blindness. For the first time in her life, a top trusts her girlfriend enough to let her take control. A connection forged in a bar in New Mexico encourages a breast cancer survivor to take a lover. Stories of new love and first lesbian encounters intermingle with other emotional and physical firsts, and the excitement of new experiences: an around the world flight, the thrill of a carnival, and even the first time to see the sea.
With fantastic stories by favorite writers such as Sacchi Green, Harper Bliss, Annabeth Leong, Allison Wonderland, and Jeremy Edwards, the variety in this anthology means there is something for everyone.
And here’s an excerpt from “Before the bus comes…”
So I took a deep breath, and as a crowded bus sped past blaring its horn at a jaywalker, I pushed open the door of the bar and stepped inside.
At this point you want me to say I stepped into another world and my life changed for good. But, no, it really looked just like any other bar and the clientele, apart from the fact there were virtually no guys, looked the same as in any other bar. Rock music blasted out and on a tiny dance floor sweaty bodies heaved to the beat. I had to elbow my way to the bar and I couldn’t call it whether I trod on more toes than trod on mine. But I liked it—the air smelled sexy with the collective fug of hot girls having fun.
I ordered a beer, feeling pleased with myself. Such bravery! And for once I had dressed right – skinny jeans, band t-shirt and badass boots. I was rocking it and ready to rock it with someone else. Or I would be after I’d downed a couple of beers to blow away my inhibitions. But I was in no hurry. I wanted to slip into this easily, slowly…
I saw her almost straight away, of course. After the second sip of beer my attention was snagged by a petite girl at the other end of the bar. Not a ravishing beauty but she had the sort of retroussé nose I’d obsessed about through high school and her dirty blond hair was pulled up into a scruffy pony tail from which plenty had escaped. Her wide-set dark eyes were fixed on the girl behind the bar and I instantly wished they were looking at me.
I watched her order with a small, round mouth and then she fidgeted while she waited for two beers to be drawn. Damn! She was with someone. And I was starting to feel distinctly masculine in my behavior—check out the hot girl, assess your chances… Something about her got to me and I was horny as hell.
Now, shit, what was the etiquette for chatting up a girl who might be here with her girlfriend or who might just be here with a friend? I drank my beer and watched her making slow progress through the crush around the bar. Her skimpy tank showed off well-muscled arms and shoulders and, when I caught a glimpse of how tight her jeans were, I wanted to see more. I came here to enjoy myself but I wondered if I’d leave feeling tortured instead. Maybe I should just go home and play with the rabbit.
No. I’d come here with a purpose and the rabbit could fuck itself. I finished my drink and settled on the time-tested classic approach—bump into the girl and spill her beer. Offer to replace spilt drink. Hang around chatting until she blows me off, one way or another.
In my imagination, she’d bought the other beer for me, would emerge from the crowd and hand it to me with a smile and a knowing wink. But in actual fact, I’d lost her in the throng and she wouldn’t have even noticed me anyway. I needed to cruise the room for her under the pretence of heading back to the bar. And that was no hardship, pushing my way through a hundred girls who smelled enticingly of scent, sweat and sex, and favored tight, tight clothing.
The fact that I did actually accidently bump into my girl and spill her beer, rather than pretending to, I took to be a good sign. But she evidently didn’t as she looked down at her beer-spattered leg.
Up close she was even prettier and my heart started flailing in my chest. An anxiety attack. Great!
She stared at me with her dark eyes and, instead of saying sorry, I remained mute. The-cat-got-my-tongue big time. Her eyes narrowed.
“You did that on purpose, didn’t you?” she said.
I shook my head frantically.
“Yes, you did,” she said, nodding slowly. “I saw you checking me out earlier. Fuck you!”
“Let me get you another beer,” I said.
“Forget it. Hardly any spilt.”
She stared at me. I looked down at the beers in her hands. She was right. One glass had an inch less beer than the other but that was all.
And then she smiled and it really did things to me. Deep down inside things.
“Here,” she said, and held out the beer I’d jogged.
“What about…? Didn’t you buy this for someone?”
“Just a girl,” she said with a shrug of one shoulder. “She wasn’t as cute as you.”
You know. That moment when your heart does a flick-flack. But it felt weird to be called cute by a girl six inches shorter and, I’d guess, five years younger. Was it somehow obvious I was a newbie to the scene? I didn’t know how to respond to this so I drank beer, quite a bit too fast.
She watched me over the rim of her glass and downed her beer in one.
I finished off my beer.
She grabbed my empty glass and dumped it on a nearby table. Then she pulled me through the bodies towards the dance floor. It was the size of a postage stamp and the grinding, writhing mass of dancers spilled over on all sides, practically indistinguishable from the non-dancers and drinkers surrounding it, rolling their hips in time to the thumping base line. We made our way right to the center of the floor, where there was only enough space to dance real close to your partner and everyone else besides.
It was hot and she was hot. I was hot. Okay, it sounds like the chorus of a bad pop song but if nothing else had happened that evening, I would have gone home happy. I love dancing but I couldn’t remember the last time I did—and, well, this time I was dancing with a girl I wanted to fuck. She brushed against me and I brushed right back and each time it sent a little shiver of current up my spine and down to my belly. I knew it had the same effect on her when I saw a rash of goose bumps puckering the skin on her arms. There was no way she felt cold and my forearm had just nudged the side of her breast.
She smiled at me and I let my gaze drop down. Her nipples were hard and clearly visible through the fabric of her top. I wanted to touch them and my mouth went dry. Inside my chest, my heart was competing with the thud-thud-thud of the drum track. I hooked the back of her neck with my arm to draw her closer.
“Can we get outa here?” I said, ramping my volume so she could hear me over the music.