Authors: Sadie Keynes
“White wine,” I reply.
My dress has started to ride up so I pull it down when Kyan isn’t looking. He was right, I am probably a bit overdressed for an evening in a hotel bar. I wasn’t sure what to wear so I just went all out. Unfortunately, it probably looks like I’ve dressed this way to try and seduce him. From the way he keeps looking me up and down, it might just work.
He’s wearing a plain, white shirt and some tan chinos with deck shoes. The typical rich guy smart-casual look. Kyan pulls that look off better than anyone I’ve seen before. His shirt is filled out with broad shoulders and thick arms and comes in close to his small waist and flat stomach. I’ve seen what’s underneath that shirt and I realize I’m biting my lip as I think about it again.
Control yourself, Clara. After a couple of drinks, you can make your excuses and go to bed…ALONE.
The bartender brings my white wine over and I sip it. The fruity warmth of the drink feels good and I have to force myself not to gulp it down.
“What’s your room like?” asks Kyan.
“It’s amazing,” I reply, “The view is incredible, you can see right across the city. And the shower…”
“It’s like standing under a waterfall isn’t it?”
“Yeah. Does your room have a hot tub too?”
“Yep. Shame we aren’t going to get a chance to use them.”
“Maybe next time we come,” I say.
“I don’t think Mr. Huang and his colleagues will be inviting us back for a while. Here’s to our success!”
We laugh together and clink our glasses before draining them. Kyan orders two more drinks for us and they appear moments later. At this rate I’m going to be unconscious in less than an hour.
I make sure to make my next drink last, sipping it slowly while we chat.
“So what’s the future for Ellis Energy?” I ask, “What are you going to do when you’ve burned every fossil fuel in the world?”
“Long term? We’ll move into renewables of course. There’s no other choice.”
“So why not invest in renewables now? Wouldn’t it make more sense to get into that before it really takes off?”
“I leave that stuff to people like Mark Greene. Renewables are fine for wealthy countries but most of the world has to rely on cheaper sources of energy. Coal for example.”
I can already feel the warmth of the wine starting to spread through me. My head feels lighter like there’s a bubble behind my eyes. I like it.
“But those poorer countries are probably the ones that are going to be the worst affected by global warming. They need investment in renewables more than anyone.”
“I agree, in time. For now, if Ellis Energy doesn’t own their coal plants, someone else will. The choice isn’t between renewables and coal—as you saw today—the choice is between responsibly managed fossil fuels and people whose only concern is how much money they can make before the world dies.”
He’s right. Of course he’s right. Maybe I’ve been naïve. Am I supposed to believe that he’s motivated by principles in the same way I am? He was magnificent in the meeting earlier today but I don’t know if I’m ever going to be sure if it's just all about the money or if he really does care.
“When will the time be right to change though? Seems like that’s just an excuse so you can justify how you keep making billions out of your investments.”
Kyan sips his whiskey and turns to look thoughtfully at the lonely jazz pianist in the corner of the room.
“You might be right,” he says after a while, “The money doesn’t mean that much to me anymore. Once you’ve made a billion, how much difference does another billion make? We’re reducing pollution and increasing safety in our plants all the time—evolution not revolution—but I…I want to leave something more. A legacy.”
It might just be the alcohol talking, but this is a side to Kyan I haven’t seen before.
“A legacy? Like what?” I ask.
“Like changing the world. Like something more than just having the biggest bank balance,” says Kyan, “Growing up I promised myself that I wouldn’t live with poverty forever and that, one day, I would change the world. Thing is, you can’t change the world with a hundred thousand dollars or even with a hundred million dollars, not really. That’s why I had to keep making more money.”
“But how much is enough?” I say.
“I dunno,” replies Kyan, “But I feel like I’m getting close.”
I take another sip of wine, savoring the cool sweetness in my mouth that transforms into warmth as it slips down my throat.
It’s been a little more than a week since I met Kyan and in that time my opinion of him has swerved from liking him to hating him and back again with everything in-between. I’m getting whiplash from my feelings towards him. Every time we talk it’s like another layer of him falls away and between each layer that screams ‘asshole’ is one that suggests a deep, thoughtful, and caring nature.
“So how are you liking your time at Ellis Energy so far? Better than you thought it would be?”
“I…I have to admit, I’m enjoying it,” I say.
I can’t deny it. If I was still at Greene Earth I would probably have spent the week preparing dull reports, no way would I have got to fly on a private jet.
“It only gets better. There will be more meetings like today and hopefully you’ll be with me in them.”
“Really? Me? Aren’t there other people who you want to—”
“Nope. Did you see the look on Huang’s face when you called him out on his little scam? They were expecting us to just be wowed by those numbers he gave us and accept whatever he wanted, but you saw straight through them. You did great.”
Kyan’s hand is on mine before he finishes speaking. Almost by instinct my eyes close and I lean in towards him.
What the hell are you doing Clara? You’re going to make an idiot of yourself!
flashes through my mind. Time seems to stop. It’s a mistake. It has to be. No good can come of this. Either I’m embarrassing myself or I’m about to…
I sense the warmth of Kyan as he closes the gap between us. His lips touch mine and my mouth opens slightly so I can feel his tongue against mine. He tastes of whiskey. The hot, woody scent of his cologne drives me crazy. It doesn’t matter what happens after tonight. All I know is that I want him, I need him.
It feels like minutes until our lips finally pull apart. I gasp a little, missing the feel of his mouth against mine. Missing the slightly scratchy feeling of his stubble against my smooth face. I want to speak, to say something meaningful, something sexy and cool, but no words will come out. I must look a flustered mess, all wide eyes and flushed skin,
but Kyan still looks completely unruffled. He runs a hand through his hair and turns to finish his whiskey.
“So,” he says draining the rest of his drink, “how about we go try out that hot tub in your room?”
I nearly choke on my wine.
Play it cool Clara, he’s probably just joking.
“I…err…” I try to stammer out some witty response but I’ve got nothing. I hope he doesn’t notice me blushing, “I…I didn’t bring any swimwear.”
“I don’t think that’s a problem. I mean, I haven’t got anything you haven’t seen already.”
I follow him to the elevator in a daze.
I swipe my card in the door and walk into my luxurious room. When I hear him close the door behind me I turn around and he’s right there, his broad shoulders and powerful chest filling the space in front of me.
He stoops to kiss me and our lips meet again. I wrap my arms around him and, in turn, I feel a hand on the back of my neck, buried deep in my hair. His other hand is on the small of my back, pulling me closer to him, forcing our bodies together.
What the hell are you doing Clara?
Screams the voice of reason in my head,
He’s your boss! This is a HUGE mistake.
It doesn’t feel like a mistake. It feels more right than anything has ever really felt to me. Is it just the alcohol making me think this is a good idea? No, I’ve only had two glasses of wine and the tingling lightheadedness I get when I’m tipsy is there, but I’m not completely uninhibited yet.
Eventually, he withdraws his mouth from mine again, leaving my lips feeling cold and eager to meet with his once more.
“I’ll be in the tub,” he says, beginning to unbutton his shirt and turning towards the beautiful marble-covered bathroom.
As he walks he begins to shed his clothes. First, his shirt falls to the ground revealing a smooth back knotted with thick muscle. He removes his belt and lets his pants fall to the ground and I can’t help but stare at his tight, athletic butt. As he walks by, my eyes shift down to thick thighs and then back up to his magnificent ass. I can’t stop thinking about what he looks like from the front.
He shuts the door and I hear the sound of water. I take off my clothes as quickly as I can, tearing at my heels to get them off before slipping out of my dress. I grab a dressing a gown to cover myself and go into the bathroom.
When I open the door Kyan is in the wide, circular tub already, the water teeming with bubbles. Only his head, neck, and broad shoulders are visible above the roiling water, his arms spread wide over the rim of the tub.
I tiptoe over to the tub. The gleaming white tiles feel cold on my feet. I step into the water and let the dressing gown drop onto the bathroom floor behind me. Kyan watches me with a smile while I do it. Even though my bottom half is almost immediately covered by water and my folded arms cover my breasts, I still feel vulnerable and exposed beneath his gaze.
I slide my body into the tub opposite Kyan. The warmth of the water feels great. I half-sit, half-float in the tub, feeling the tension and nervousness dissipate almost immediately. I look over at Kyan, his relaxed half-smile and open posture inviting me to go him, to touch him and feel his soft skin against mine. I want to do it but I can’t. I’m not a shy person particularly, but getting naked in a hot tub with a guy I hardly know is the limit of my adventurousness.
For few minutes we sit in silence in the heat of the tub, occasionally exchanging glances. I close my eyes and tilt my head back.
“This was a great idea, right?” says Kyan.
“Yeah,” I agree.
I don’t know where my body ends and the water begins, my weight perfectly supported by the water and the jets of bubbles billowing around me. I think about Kyan, so close to me but out of my reach and I dream of him moving towards me, reaching out, and feeling his touch against my wet skin.
I hear movement in the water and when I open my eyes he’s inches away from me. Like my fantasy come to life. I can feel his hands on my body under the water, pulling himself closer to me.
He leans toward me, his square jaw against my neck and whispers in his velvet voice, “You are so fucking gorgeous.”
My god, I want him so much. I’m aching to feel him, for him to take me utterly.
My arms are suddenly round his neck and gripping the smooth wetness of his back while his lips caress my neck. Then, my legs move apart, supported by the water, and surround him, gripping him, pulling him closer into me.
He kisses me wildly. Kyan’s cool exterior is gone, replaced by animal lust. It feels so good to know that he needs me as much as I need him. The kisses on my neck aren’t just lips anymore, I feel teeth graze me like he wants to devour me.
“Kyan…Kyan,” I say breathlessly as I push his head away.
“What is it?” he says, eyes burning into mine.
“This is wrong, isn’t it? We’re going to be working together for a while, is this going to mess it up?”
“All I know is I’ve wanted you from the moment I saw you in that coffee shop,” he says.
I believe him. I know he lies and I know he messes women around but I know he’s telling the truth because I felt it between us too, the moment I saw him. When we got drunk it rose to the surface for a moment but we both buried it until now.
Screw it, I don’t care about the future anymore. I’ve spent so long worrying about my studying, my career, the future of the planet. Right now I don’t care what happens tomorrow, let alone years from now. All I know is that I need this man.
“I want you too.”
The words are barely out of my mouth before Kyan is on me again. Kissing my neck, my chest, my breasts. I gasp and arch my back towards him as his teeth graze a sensitive nipple.
Beneath the water I feel an arm wrap around my back and hoist me up through the water, pressing my body against his. My legs are wrapped around him and I squeeze against him, bringing myself even closer to him. I feel something brush against me, something hot and hard and I reach a hand down to wrap my fingers around the shaft of Kyan’s cock.
He. Is. HUGE. I mean, I kind of knew what to expect—he could barely cover himself when I saw him naked in his office—but wow. I hear him exhale with pleasure as I move my hand up and down, gently caressing to tip, feeling his cock twitch in my hand as I do.
While one of his arms is wrapped around me, holding me to him, the other hand works its way down my thigh, roaming nearer to the center of my aching desire for him. He kisses me deeply as his thick fingers find my core where they start to move with a gentleness and precision that surprises me.