Friday, May 21, 2010

91.) Permanent

You Sharks fans are gonna keep me on my toes....

Soundtrack Song - Phoenix, Lisztomania

Another loss. I was frustrated; I hadn’t scored or put up any points, but at least I wasn’t a minus. The guys around me were talking, but I tried to ignore them. The only thing I had going for me was that Jo was waiting for me back at the hotel. It was the first time that I had ever looked forward to going back to the Alameda. I really did need to check into a new place, but the hotel had the convenience of locale—which was the only reason I hadn’t left yet.

The guys here dealt with losses so differently. We were still doing very well in our conference and division, so we didn’t need to begin worrying about whether or not we were going to make the playoffs. Maybe it was just from playing on the Penguins: a team loaded down with guys who had this innate, fierce competitive spirit. Guys who had gotten a taste of winning it all the season before and wanted more.

The veterans of the team, like Blake and Thornton, were visibly bummed, but they knew how to compartmentalize because they’ve dealt with the ups and downs for so many seasons now that they had learned to leave it all behind at the rink or on the plane. The younger guys hadn’t yet tasted victory, so they didn’t know what they were missing out on, or what it took to achieve it.

“Ugh, I can’t wait to get back to ess jay,” Mitch sighed, stretching out on the seat in front of me. “I think I’m gonna relax my muscles in the hot tub and see if Sara will come over and bring one of her friends. Man, too bad it’s a Sunday night or we could go out. It’s still early.”

“But we lost,” I pointed out.

He replied, “So? We could pretty much tank it here on out and still make it to the postseason.”

“And that’s good enough for you?” I shook my head, thinking, Maybe that’s why you guys choke every year. “That’s not the kind of attitude that’s gonna win you guys a Cup. What’s gonna happen when the first round starts?”

“Listen, Letang, don’t worry about trying to fix something that’s not broken,” Couture groaned, lacing his fingers together behind his head and leaning his head back. “You’ve only been here two weeks, and we’ve won three of the first four games you here, right?”

I went over the schedule in my head. Loss, win, win, win, loss, loss. “But we lost the last two. You never wanna go on a losing streak.”

“Two games is not a streak,” Logan laughed.

“Um, technically it is,” I told him. Their nonchalance and indifference regarding their season—our season—was nothing short of infuriating. Wilson and McLellan had told me that I had been brought here to help lead these guys to the Finals. And if I had to have been uprooted and moved across the country to help this team out... forced to give up all the good things I had going for me in Pittsburgh... then it was not going to go to waste because these guys were too lackadaisical in their playing. “Maybe I don’t know how you guys do things here, but I can say from experience, since I’ve actually won a Cup, that you need to have your heads right when you’re heading down the stretch before the playoffs.”

“Ooh, someone’s all wound up,” Guch commented, trying to diffuse the situation. “Looking forward to getting back to your girl to, uh, relieve some stress?”

“Whatever,” I mumbled, looking back out the window of the bus and trying to go back to ignoring them. Soon enough, the HP Pavilion came into sight, and we all piled off. The guys headed toward their respective vehicles, and I slung my overnight bag over my shoulder and pointed myself toward the road to start my walk.

“Letang, wait up,” Bowlby called after me. I stopped and turned, waiting for him to catch up with me, but he instead waved at me to follow him. Figuring he wanted to give me a ride, to be nice, I walked over to his car with him and got in.

“Thanks for the ride,” I muttered. It wasn’t that I was unappreciative, but I now I was not only grumpy from the loss, but a frustrated with my teammates for not putting in the mental effort.

“No prob. Listen, don’t get discouraged with those guys, and don’t let them bother you either. See, that’s why we need you here. We need a younger guy that can lead and set an example for them to model themselves after. They’re young guys, thinking they’re on top of the world. San José is like a playground to them, where they play a game for a living and then get to play around even more when they’re off the ice. Just keep playing your game, and show ’em how it’s done.”

I nodded, trying to soak this in. It was one thing to bring my experience to the table to try and help the team progress into the playoffs, but another thing entirely to have to be a leader to this group of rowdy guys that didn’t seem to want to buckle down to expend the effort.

“So, looking forward to your day off tomorrow? Got plans?” he asked, now trying to be nice to get my mind off the game and the guys.

“Uh, oh yeah. Definitely. Jo’s really excited for us to get to hang out together and relax for a whole day,” I told him, finding myself smiling despite my mood. I didn’t have the time to brood over the loss, when I had to make the most of every minute I had with Jo this week. We had to make our time together count, because it was already starting to dwindle down.

“What’re you guys doing?”

“I don’t know, actually. She’s kind of... free-spirited, I guess, so I’m letting her plan it out. I’m just gonna go along for the ride.”

“Wise man,” he chuckled. “This might sound kind of weird for me to offer you, but do you wanna borrow a car? It’ll be hard to get around and do stuff without one, unless you wanna keep calling taxis.”

“Wow, Cap, that’s really nice. That would be great, actually,” I thanked him, a little surprised by his generosity.

“Just as long as you’re careful with it,” he said with a warning his voice. He sounded like such a father.

I assured him, “I’m a good, safe driver. Your car will be safe with me, man.”

“Yeah, I figured. And Jo’s a nice girl, so I don’t mind doing this for you guys.” He hesitated for a split second before he asked, “She tell you what happened?”

“No.” I wasn’t sure if this were a trap or not. “Just that she talked to Samantha, and got her to come out of the bathroom.”

Bowlby nodded. “Well, it was nice of her to come over, so like I said, I don’t mind repaying the favor.” He took me back to his house and got me the keys to his wife’s black Escalade. I thanked him again before I quickly texted Jo to let her know I was on my way and then drove to my hotel, ready to put the day behind me. I pulled into the parking lot at the hotel, and Jo had the door open before I even approached the threshold.

“Hey,” she cooed in greeting, her head the only part of her body visible from behind the door as she let me in.

“Hey,” I sighed, slouching my shoulder and allowing the bag to drop to the floor. Then I tossed the keys onto the TV stand. “Good news, Blake lent me—” When she closed the door, I could see what she was wearing. Or not wearing. Or... oh God.

Jo was wearing one of my blue dress shirts, which was oversized on her. Her hands were lost in the sleeves, and the front was unbuttoned and open. I could see the blade of her hockey stick tattoo and also some of the writing. But what I couldn’t take my eyes off was the skimpy, barely-there bra and panties she was dressed in. Holy shit, she was barely covered. The lingerie was white but not quite white, almost bluish or opalescent. I didn’t know much about the styles or fashions of women’s underwear, but I know that just the sight of her caused my brain to short circuit and my body to wake up. I could immediately feel my pants get tight.

Her mouth curved into a smile as her eyes darted down to my crotch, undoubtedly noticing my hard on. Her fingers played with the open sides of the shirt, knowing the power she held over me. She took a few barefooted steps toward me. “So, you were saying?”

“Uh, I was saying.... I forget what I was saying,” I confessed, surprised that my mouth could even form words. I slid out of my suit jacket quickly.

She licked her lips and prompted, “Blake lent you something?”

“Mmhmm. Yeah.” I loosened my tie and pulled it over my head, without bothering to unknot it. I then untucked my shirts and began to thread the buttons through the holes. My hands were desperate to get my clothes off me, to strip down, and they busied themselves with the task rather than reach out to touch her.

“What?” she giggled, lightly running her fingers over her bare skin by the collar of the shirt. I wanted those to be my hands that were touching her. “What did you borrow?”

“Car.” My dress shirt was off, and my undershirt followed suit shortly after. Jo moved in front of me and hooked her index fingers through my belt loops in order to pull me toward the bed. My eyes were trained on only her. “I like where you went shopping. What you bought.” I was practically incoherent.

“I thought you would,” she said, pushing me down into a sitting position on the mattress. “Jamie and I had a lot of fun shopping today.”

“Yeah?”

“Yup. She kind of surprised me by being a really nice person.”

“Good,” I breathed, holding out the vowels as she crawled on top of me.

Her chest was right in front of my face as she straddled my lap and perched herself up on her knees on either side of me. She ran her fingers through my hair until she had a strong grip on my hair. She tugged on it firmly enough to make me look up at her—making it perfectly clear to me that she wanted to be the one in charge. And I was glad to relinquish the control to her.

I slipped my hands beneath the shirt she was still wearing, my thumbs rubbing circles on her sides as she bent her head down closer to mine. Jo deliberately tortured me by taking forever to finally kiss me. Unable to help myself, I swiped my tongue along her bottom lip to ask wordlessly for her to open her mouth to me. I inserted my tongue into her mouth and lazily swirled it around as my hands roamed up to her front and roughly squeezed her breasts.

When Jo broke the kiss, I began to suck at the flesh of her neck, nipping softly and gently. Her fingers began to massage my scalp, letting me know that she liked this, so I started using a little more pressure and bit her with a little more force.

“I take it you’re not tired,” she eked out, grabbing onto my shoulders.

“Nope,” I breathed against her neck, and a wave of goosebumps broke out across her skin.

“Good. Because I need your help with something.” Her words in my ear only made me harder. She had said something like this about forty-eight hours ago, I need you to help me get off—and then we had proceeded to have frantic, hot “monkey” sex.

I was ready to do that again, to help her out if that’s what she needed. “’Kay.”

“But you have to promise to be gentle with me, Kris,” she moaned, still enjoying the way I was making her feel.

If she were still sore, then I could be gentle. We didn’t have to have frantic sex; slow and romantic making love worked for me, too. I gave her another one-word response. “Promise.”

“Good,” she sighed, letting go of my hair and then backing up off my lap.

As she started walking toward the bathroom, I felt gypped. The pressure of my dick straining against the fly of my dress pants was beginning to become unbearable. Jo was no tease. “Where are you going?”

“You said you’d help me. I’ll be right back.”

I groaned and flung myself back against the bed. What kind of help did she want? Rubbing my hands over my face, I tried to take a few deep breaths to calm myself. She was dressed so sexy, so I knew I’d still get laid... but I didn’t want to wait.

“Hey,” she called, and I looked up just in time to see something come flying toward my head.

With my good hockey reflexes, I managed to catch the UFO. It was a tube of A+D ointment, like the stuff I had been told to use for my tattoo. But Jo’s tattoo was old; she got that back in October, as her birthday present from Tubby.

I pushed up back into my sitting position, looking at her and trying to figure out what she had this for, or if maybe I needed it for something—but I didn’t know what. Jo had taken off the shirt to reveal the strapless bra and panties that were even skimpier than I had thought. Once I saw that, I forgot all about what was in my hand.

Jo got down on her knees in front of me, and I was sure that she was going to help me take off my pants; to my chagrin, she turned her back to me. “Remember. Gentle.”

“With what?” I asked, finding out the answer slowly for myself. I looked down at her as she pulled her hair over to one side of her neck and leaned forward. There it was, plain as day, black cursive script across her right shoulder blade: cinquante-huit. My number, written out in a single line in French. It was still a bit red and irritated, so I just underlined it with my finger. “Jo....”

“I hope it’s right. Jamie and I had to Google it on her phone,” she chuckled, scooting up to sit with me on the bed. She was facing me, examining my face. “So? What do you think of it?”

Speechless. I was absolutely speechless; I had no clue what to say. I loved Jo, and I was crazy about her, but seeing a tattoo—something so permanent—on her body that all but branded her to me was shocking. I wasn’t scared of commitment, because I loved being committed to her and being her boyfriend. But a tattoo? It was like I had marked her as mine, and no one else’s. Like I had my name on her.

“It’s not because I love you,” she added quietly in explanation. “I mean, I do love you, but it’s not why I got it.”

“Then why?” I asked, feeling beyond curious. “I think it’s beautiful, I do, but... this is a really, really big thing. I mean, tattoos are big decisions.”

“I know,” she admitted with a shrug. “But once the idea popped into my head, I knew I had to do it. I like tattoos, and I like it when they mean something. And this one means a lot to me, just like my other one.”

I swallowed. I knew how much her “other one” meant to her, because it was a memorial for her twin brother. I couldn’t even believe she put me in the same realm as him, but knowing that it was something that was so meaningful made it easier to accept. It may have been spur of the moment, but it hadn’t been a mere whim. “So, what made you get it?”

“You’re a really, really big part of me, of the person I am now. Jamie and I were talking, and I got to thinking. No matter what happens, you’re always going to be someone who had a really big affect on me, and I wanted to kind of commemorate that. And this seemed like a special way to do just that, but I wanted something not so obvious. So I thought about your number, and since you speak French, this made sense to me. Now, you’re a part of me, and it’s like having a piece of you with me always. I really like it, Kris, and I hope you do, too. I don’t want this to weird you out, and I think it sorta is.”

“Not weirded out, just shocked,” I assured her. “If I’d’ve known you were thinking about it or something, I could have adjusted to the idea of it.”

Jo chuckled, which kind of surprised me just as much as her new ink job. “I distinctly remember you coming home and surprising me with this,” she laughed, rubbing my left bicep. “And you were the ‘my body is a temple’ guy. Remember when I showed you my first one, and I asked you if you had any? I think your eyes pretty much bugged out of your head.”

“They’re just so... permanent.” With a sigh, I cupped her shoulder and turned her body so I could see her back again. It wasn’t that big, maybe eight inches long at most. Even though it was in a flowing, elaborate script, it wasn’t impossible to read like some cursive fonts. It was both simple and intricate, all at once. I read it aloud. “Cinquante-huit.”

She tried to repeat it, to say it appropriately, but she had a bad American accent that made me chuckle. “Close enough.”

I lightly let my fingers graze that discolored patch of skin, until the urge to spell it out came over me. I used my tongue to trace the curly lines, moving from letter to letter carefully and gently and falling in love with the tattoo as I wrote it out across her shoulder blade, as if I were inking it myself. Goosebumps exploded across her back and arms; if that reaction were from any pain, she didn’t tell cry out or ask me to stop. I dotted each lowercase-i with a kiss.

I didn’t feel any pressure because of it. It wasn’t a symbol of what we were as a couple or who I was as her boyfriend; she made that clear. Plus, there was absolutely no expectation for me to get anything and reciprocate the gesture. This was the result of my attempts to reach out to a kindred spirit and to have broken through. I had wanted to make an impact, and I had. Now everyone could see that.

Je l'aime,” I told her. I unhooked the dainty clasp of her bra, which caught her a little off guard. She turned to look at me as I opened the tube and squirted some of the ointment onto my finger. When I smiled at her, she appeared reassured, so she presented her back to me again to apply the salve. I smeared it and covered the fresh tattoo and the surrounding red skin. “Do you have a wrap or something?”

“Yeah,” she replied, reaching for a box of Saran wrap on the nightstand. I hadn’t even noticed it when I walked in, because I had been watching Jo the whole time. She ripped off a piece just big enough to cover the spot, and I gently pressed it and made it stick so her skin would be protected as she slept. “So, you really like it? Be honest with me, Kristopher.”

“When have I ever lied to you?”

Jo turned around and shifted so she was closer to me. I grabbed her hips and pulled her back onto my lap, ready to pick up where we had left off. But this time, instead of desperation and need, I wanted to go slow and sexy. I started to lay her down on the bed, but she squirmed and squealed in protest. “Not on my back. Please!”

“Sorry. I forgot,” I chuckled, not even thinking about the discomfort that would cause her. I pulled her back up and then lay on my back, allowing her to spread out on top of me. Cupping her breasts as I leaned up to kiss her, her hands massaged and kneaded their way down my chest and abs and slowly began to work at my belt buckle.

As she did that, I stretched and reached into her panties, but I must have been a little overzealous. A rip echoed off the walls and the periwinkle lace trim separated from white fabric.

“Kris!” she whined, unable to keep the laughter out of her voice. “Brand new! I just bought these today!”

“I’m sorry. I’ll buy you new ones,” I promised. “I didn’t even do anything! Shoddy workmanship.”

“It’s okay. I didn’t shell out the cash for them. Just don’t make a habit of ripping my clothes off me, at least literally.”

I cupped my hand around the back of her neck and tangled my fingers in her hair, bringing her down for another kiss while my other hand resumed its work of feeling in between her legs. We’d barely gotten to the foreplay, but we wanted each other too badly to torture ourselves.

14 comments:

  1. Did you just post after the game? Cool.

    “Uh, I was saying.... I forget what I was saying,”
    I laughed so hard at this. In fact, his whole brain freeze at the sight of Jo's new, poorly constructed lingerie was so funny. It's that whole power dynamic, grown men reduced to putty...

    I guess I'm too much of a worrier. I think that the tattoo is too permanent and will mess things up somehow. I hope not, fingers crossed.

    In any case, they are still great together, relaxed and happy. Jo was able to get that loss off his mind right away!

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  2. Is it selfish of me to hope that this story never ends? Well, okay- not for a really, really, really long time then?

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  3. Ohhhh she better not get the tattoo curse!!
    Get a tattoo of your bf/gf's name and you break up...well the number is sorta kinda like his name right...it's HIS number? I'm just rambling!

    Just caught up on your last two posts!
    And I'm a little worried about when Jo leaves..she's not going to be able to see him for two months?! she's going to crack! : (

    Great two updates!!

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  4. “Uh, I was saying.... I forget what I was saying,”
    ^ ^ hahahahahah, that was hilarious

    The tattoo idea was amazing, my jaw honestly dropped.
    Beautifully done, yet again.<3

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  5. Aw, great chapter. but is it just me or is 8 inches hella big!? That's almost a foot long on her shoulder! lol

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  6. Wow, that was beautiful and Kris took it well. I love the effect Jo has on him as him mind went blank as soon as he saw her.

    "Promise." -> My immediate thoughts were, sure, he's not listening, he's just looking. Aww they're so in love it's too cute :)

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  7. Okay, I have been a little MIA, so let me address a few things about the last couple chapters.

    First, I have listened to Different Now probably a thousand times since you posted chapter 89. Not only was it perfect but the song is incredible. So kudos on the song choice, i love it.

    Last update was incredible. I was really happy about Jo getting a long with Jamie, I think it really speaks to her development as a person that she is able to get along with people and be open and honest in situations when at the beginning of this story she was really quick to shut people out. I loved that they went shopping and that "Kris' generocity" is rubbing off on her and she bought Jamie the stuff. It was a really good picture of a happy Jo who, even though she is upset she won't get to see Kris, had learned to deal with her emotions and people in a much healthier way.

    Now, this update was... something else. Like everyone else the idea of Kris Letang being all dumbfounded by a sexy woman? Yes please? But, I am realllllly nervous. It isn't that Kris took the tattoo the wrong way, and I think it was a beautiful gesture, his thought process semmed as shocked and incoherent as his words when he saw Jo in her new 'poorly fabricated' underwear. But, I am worried that they are both willing to accept something so permanent, Jo inking it, Kris thinking its cool, but they still aren't willing to talk about the fact that they have an impending two month separation.

    Jo especially, I think that with all the honesty and love going on she is kind of neglecting being honest with herself. She wanted to talk about it until Kris said he wanted to put it off and now they are both kind of lying to themselves about how necessary the conversation is so that, in the name of their honest relationship, they don't have to talk about it.

    I don't know, I am seriously worried about that conversation and I guess the tattoo for me solidifies that Jo is more than willing to tranfer or move or quit school, and I don't know...

    I just feel like they aren't being as honest with each other about their feelings and desires and what is next for them as they think they are, which is an easy trap to fall into when they have all these grand gestures of tattoos and love after helping Samantha and relating to Kris and all that stuff.

    Maybe I am crazy and paranoid. :)

    Jay, these updates are seriously sensational. Oh and I forgot to mention that the contrast between Kris and his team mates is sensational. I love it.

    Gahhh, end of my ranting, I am so excited to see the aftermath of this tattoo.

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  8. Ugh, they're so sweet they made me tear up a little. Something about that tattoo just being so romantic but sweet made me cry.

    I guess that means that this was another fabulous chapter :)

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  9. Jay, are you trying to kill me? The sweetness in this is overwhelming and I'm pretty sure it's not humanly safe. This was SO AMAZING. I couldn't help but cry a bit when she revealed the tattoo. It was so incredibly adorable!<3 Such a good twist that I never expected. Way to keep us on our toes(:

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  10. I've been so behind in reading but now I'm caught up. It's hard to comment on so much at one time so I'm just going to hit a couple of things.

    First off the "Jesus Pose" and hugging in hockey. I was watching game 2 of the 1st round with some friends. I kept replaying the Sid/Kris goal trying to explain how insanely good it was. But they were more interested in why Kris didn't have a bigger "celebration" move. I explained that wasn't celebration it was relief. It was a Thank God maybe the press will get off my ass about hitting the net, an if I would have missed that goal after what Sid did I would have been traded, what a relief, move. And they all love how much hugging there is in hockey. They think it's sweet how big tough guys hug each other so easily. What can I say, I live in KS if there weren't so many hot hockey players I would never get anyone to watch. So I lmao when I read your discription!

    Maybe I just trust Kris and Jo too much, but I'm not concerned that the tattoo is going to be a big deal. It was a reaction to all the emotions she was feeling in "Trip Down Memory Lane". Which my the way was so beautiful. I can't even explain how much it moved me. They really are soul mates.
    Anyway I was saying they don't play games with each other.
    No matter what happens, this time with Kris will always be a big part of her life. She wanted to pay homage to that. I think he understands.
    **I used my tongue to trace the curly lines, moving from letter to letter carefully and gently and falling in love with the tattoo as I wrote it out across her shoulder blade, as if I were inking it myself.** HOT HOT HOT and beautiful.

    At last we see a little "regular guy" in Kris:
    She was dressed so sexy, so I knew I’d still get laid... but I didn’t want to wait.

    I'm not looking forward to her leaving but at least now we know when his season is over! Well maybe because you have the power to change all that!! If you change it would you make sure the Flyers don't win the EC Finals? Please please please.

    Wonderful as always. Thank you.

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  11. Jay, you rock (but you already knew that)

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  12. amazing.....just amazing

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  13. Ok so... this update was amazing and I want to show you just how amazing by posting an epic comment, but I'm wayyyy too excited to move onto the next update to do that so... let me just pick out a couple things I really loved about this one.

    "Maybe that’s why you guys choke every year."
    ^^ LMFAO. Ok, you know I love my Thornton, but even so... that's hilarious. I mean, I love that Kris is talking to HIS team, and this is still what he's thinking.
    And, even though he's on that team now, there's still a very big 'them'/'you guys' thing going on.
    I mean, he's still a penguin at heart and I can't imagine how long it would take to get use to a move like that.

    "When she closed the door, I could see what she was wearing. Or not wearing. Or... oh God."
    ^^ HAHAHAHAHA Ohh poor Kristopher. What's he going to do now? I seriously think Jo might give him a heartattack some day... I mean... sexy undies AND a tattoo? I'm surprised he's still concious lol.

    "something so permanent—on her body that all but branded her to me"
    ^^ Meow. I love that statement and I love that this is what he thought. They totally do belong to each other and no matter what happens they will always have a huge impact on the way the other's life turned out.
    I love that she did this and I love that he's not mad about it... now... NEXT UPDATE!!

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  14. I liked the idea of the tattoo, the FRENCH tattoo!... :D

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