Nik patted the mattress.
Suki slid onto the bed next to her and looked up at the ceiling.
“Wow,” she said. “This is one awesome mattress. Have I ever told you how much I love the mattresses in good hotels? I’m a complete slut for them.”
“Really?” Nik said. “That’s all it would have taken to get you into bed before this? A pricey room with a pillow-top mattress?”
Suki elbowed her. “It’s all about the back support, baby.”
“Ow. No, really, Suk. Do you know how long I’ve wanted to lay next to you like this?”
“Nik, you’re embarrassing me. “
“Listen, it’s been since the first day you walked into the restaurant for your interview.”
“That was like, six years ago.”
“I know. It’s been a long time. A veritable eternity, let me tell you.”
Nik put her hands behind her head and they lay quietly for a moment.
“You’ve got to admit, this feels pretty good, doesn’t it?”
“It does,” Suki said. “It feels sort of natural, and I think is the first time all day I’ve relaxed. Plus, this mattress is awfully comfortable.”
“It seems almost criminal to waste it.”
“We could have a sleep-over,” Suki joked.
“I’m too old for sleep-overs. I don’t want to play games. I want you. For real. You’ve got my complete attention.”
Tension hung in the air between them.
Suki rolled to face her friend.
“How come you never said anything about this before now?”
Nik shrugged. “I don’t know. It never seemed like the right time. You were dating What’s-Her-Bucket and then I was dating Meg. By the time Meg and I split, you were with… what was her name, Stone?”
“Right. Then I had the thing with Andria.”
Suki laughed. “You mean that other Spice Girl? Psycho Spice?”
“Yeah. And work kept getting in the way. For a while I was even your boss.”
“At least you thought you were,” Suki said.
They both laughed.
“Nik?” Suki said, suddenly. “Will you spoon me?”
“Hell, yeah. Inside or outside?”
“Right here and now.”
“No, silly. Inside spoon or outside spoon.”
Suki thought for a minute. “I’d like to be the inside spoon.”
“I was hoping you’d say that,” Nik said.
They turned onto their sides.
Nik slipped her arm around Suki’s waist and pulled her close.
“Wow,” Suki said “This is nice.”
“Maybe you are a slut for good mattresses.”
They breathed into each other.
Nik scooped Suki’s hair to the side. “Oh my God. You smell fantastic,” she said, nuzzling her nose into the back of her neck. She pressed her lips there, slightly open, and Suki could feel the heat and the wetness of her mouth as she began to suck, gently, at her nape. Simultaneously, Nik’s hand trailed down and she began to run her fingers up and down the side seam of Suki’s skirt.
Suki sighed a deep and luxurious sigh. “I could stay here all night.”
“I think that would be a nice thing,” Nik said
She moved her hand back to Suki’s waist and very gently, and very slowly, pulled her starched cotton blouse out of her waistband. She slid her hand under Suki’s shirt and pressed it against her belly. Her voice broke a little. “You’re so amazingly soft and warm. You don’t even feel real. You feel better than I ever imagined.”
Suki wiggled her hips back against her, and then suddenly looked over her shoulder.
“Nik! Are you packing? You actually came here packing?”
“Hey! A girl can dream can’t she?”
“What’s that about?” Nik asked. “Did I scare you?”
“Surprisingly, not at all,” Suki said. “I was just thinking we could use some more pillows.”
“Lady, your wish is my command.”
“And maybe a soft blanket?”
“Hang on, I saw some on the way in,” Nik said. “Don’t you dare move an inch.”
It was when she started to rise that she saw the figure at the end of the bed, his arms crossed, and the florescent light glinting off his name tag.
The store clerk cleared his throat as the women looked up at him sheepishly.
“Perhaps I could talk the two of you into continuing your shopping experience elsewhere?”