Angelis & Not saying girl
The Orpheum-Oriental Theatre, a broken-down edifice sandwiched between a thriving deli and an off-licence which changed its management every other week, had been called the Opium Oriental since its brief vogue in the sixties, when it had stopped playing host to endless badly-accented amateur productions of Death of a Salesman and A Streetcar Named Desire, and its giant, dilapidated movie screen had taken the place of the actors. It deserved its name, resembling a rich mandarin's bordello that had seen much, much better days. It was a funky bargain basement of slashed, decayed red velvet oozing padding, its atmosphere of decay appropriately attenuated by the thick, woodsy pall of marijuana smoke that hung in the air, an almost visible blue gauzy curtain of scent that usually caused moviegoers to sneeze for the first ten minutes since their brave entrance into the establishment.
One of the many reasons Gemma adored the Orpheum-Oriental was that it was one of the few failsafe sneeze-inducers she knew. She and her best friend Jeremy had practically lived there from the ages of fourteen to sixteen, their seats on the balcony staked out permanently, counting up their spare coppers to see if they could afford some popcorn for the next showing. They were also seasoned weed smokers in those pre-nine to five days, so they'd become almost immune to the various scents that made novices to the theatre crease up in desperate paroxysms of sneezing which they secretly sat back and enjoyed as much as they did the movie.
Fits of the sneezes did occasionally take Gemma by surprise, but only at the sleazy eleven-to-three arthouse porn showings during which everyone smoked so much weed that half the moviegoers present had to run out into the lobby. She generally avoided those. Because she attached so much sexual stigma to sneezing, the idea that anyone, apart from Jeremy for some odd reason, might see or hear her doing it was incredibly embarrassing to her.
This cinema was one of the only places to which Gemma took her first dates- whenever she was attracted to a beautiful woman, which tended to be every other day, one of her first instincts was to wonder what the woman's sneezes sounded like, what they looked like when their head would bend forward in release and, most importantly, what they would do to her. She religiously took every last one of her crushes to a movie at the Orpheum-Oriental, the pockets of her beloved leather pulling-jacket positively overflowing with tissues for the chosen beauty at her side. Gemma, although she had a great amount of guilty fun with the mischief of putting her lovers through this, figured that acting concerned for the agonisingly ticklish state of her new love's nose would earn her a few points.
That being said, she didn't need them. Gemma was beautiful, intelligent, a fine conversationalist, reasonably well-off financially and unbelievably good at pleasuring women. Sneezing, however, was a whole different issue for her. A single sneeze, even a cartoon sneeze on an early morning kid's TV show or a faked cold-commercial, "Ah-choo!" was enough to turn her from a sophisticated, witty, collected young woman into a silent, quivering mass of exposed nerve endings. And this theatre- Gemma was convinced that it was God's own special gift to her.
Several times Gemma had found herself unable to resist when a gorgeous new conquest proved exceptionally sensitive to the sneeze-provoking reek of old popcorn, candy and the prodigious amounts of smoke, dust, sawdust and particles of kapok chair-stuffing that made the air practically unbreathable. She would watch them struggle with the sneeze, observing as it built and built before finally exploding out of them, generally in an irrepressible fit. Sometimes, it would be two or three satisfyingly huge and vocal explosions. Others launched into soft, uncontrollable series of sneezes they were at great pains to keep quiet. Inevitably though, these nasal exploits would turn her knees to jelly and make hot blood rush between her legs. On the occasions that her date didn't adjust to the atmosphere and was still sneezing after the movie started, Gemma usually had to rush them upstairs into the cramped, dingy black-and-white-tiled bathroom to make passionate and noisy love to them.
So far, none of them had objected. She'd been happy to do that for as long as she could still attract girls... but then there was Elizabeth. Beautiful, sophisticated, sexy-as-hell Liz with her streaming ember-red hair and her limpid tiger-eyes. They'd met in a different cinema, strangely enough- the polished dodecaplex just on the outside of town, which was always showing the latest movies. Because the Orpheum-Oriental knew full well that it couldn't compete with edible hot dogs and comfortable conditions to view a movie in, it scraped by specializing in foreign films and old movies with great cult followings. The slowly failing mammoth was still surviving, against all odds, though it had grown increasingly and almost alarmingly shabbier even as it retained it's old funky charm.
Gemma, who'd had a crush on Winona Ryder in high school (a crush which she shared with Jeremy) had been to see Girl, Interrupted the previous week. Just as she had begun to pay more attention to her nachos than the movie, a tall, leggy redhead with incredible breasts and threw herself down next to Gemma and asked, wide eyed, "Are you Winona Ryder?"
And she'd said yes. Just for the hell of it. She loved to adopt different identities on whims when confronted with attractive strangers, though she usually did this more in clubs. She didn't object one bit to being Winona for the moment, if that would please the stunning woman gazing admiringly at her.
Gemma had kept her dark hair cropped short since she was eighteen. Her finely boned little face and huge, plum-dark eyes, coupled with her gamine appeal and indie style of dress meant that many people compared her to the actress. She'd even found herself answering the girl's questions in a fairly decent American accent.
When the redhead asked her, in a way reminiscent of a little girl asking a friend to tell her some naughty gossip, "So...did you ever shag Angelina Jolie?" Gemma had decided she liked this girl too much to carry on pretending she was an American movie star. She smiled mischievously, confessed the truth and promised the girl lunch in recompense for never having even met Johnny Depp.
Liz had laughed so much at the whole situation that the other patrons (even some of those that had previously been enjoying a state of drunken stupor) had begun to shush them, so they left early and found themselves in Liz's favourite lunch-spot, the deli which, coincidentally, was right next to the Orpheum-Oriental.
Liz was beautiful. No doubt about that. Her huge hazel eyes occasionally flashed amber, reminding Gemma of a hungry tiger. Her lips were incredibly full and plushy, her cheekbones high and aristocratic. And her nose- she had one hell of a nose. Not too big, although it was large enough to fit with all of her other generously sized facial features. It was so eloquent, so expressive, with slightly flared, gorgeously curved nostrils that often made her look as though she was on the verge of a sneeze even when she wasn't. Of course, this slight defect in her beauty immediately suggested to Gemma how much she wanted to see this unbelievably sexy woman in the throes of a sneezing fit. Gemma felt a sly smile blooming on her face as she imagined what Elizabeth would be like upon entering the Orpheum-Oriental.
The two of them, getting to know each other, had consumed ridiculous amounts of crab salad and strong-as-hell coffee which was pretty much espresso, only served in trucker's beakers instead of dolls-house cups. That lunchtime, something had really been getting up Liz's nose. Neither of them knew it yet, but the poor girl was on the verge of a truly dreadful cold, and while she and Gemma had talked animatedly, the magnificent coffee getting them more than a little high, Liz broke off a marginally interesting anecdote about the movie column she wrote and gave a little involuntary gulp which immediately caught Gemma's attention.
When Gemma looked at her, she was frantically rubbing her slender fingers along the bridge of her nose, looking absolutely desperate. Gemma thought, watching Liz struggle valiantly not to sneeze, that this woman's sneezes must truly be incredible if she was going to all this trouble to hold it in. The level of noise in the deli was prodigious- a skinny red-headed kid with bandy legs and a schoolboy's football uniform was blasting away on a saxophone outside the open door, the coffee machine was grinding beans in a deafening roar, a group of leathered, denimed oil-spattered Italian cugines were gabbling at the counter over a conversation which involved the time-honoured topic of whether one of them had really enjoyed sexual congress with the other one's mother, and a group of young black girls only two tables away from them had a ghetto blaster which was living up to its eighties moniker by blaring out, "Still D.R.E." at a truly astonishing volume. Even Gemma, who was extremely self-conscious about her big, wet sneezes, would have been totally confident just letting one out in such a noisy environment. It was a wonder they could even hear themselves think! But apparently Liz's were too much even for that.
Gemma swallowed hard, her mouth drying up immediately, as she scratchily cleared her throat and asked, "You okay, Liz?" with all the suavity of a twelve-year-old boy attempting to have a conversation with Traci Lords.
Liz held up one large, elegant long-fingered hand as she held the other to her hugely flaring nostrils. "Fine," she managed, her voice deliciously choked.
Gemma felt herself growing wet beneath the too-hot confines of her tight work pants. She could think of nothing to say. She never had been able to in such exhilarating situations. Ever since she'd acknowledged that her feeling for sneezing was sexual, around the same time as she'd admitted that her feelings for women were sexual- at about sixteen- she'd never been able to trust herself to say anything to a woman who was struggling at this point with a sneeze. There was, "Are you all right?" and then, there was "Bless you." Gemma generally managed those two quite well, but she was reasonably worried that anything in the middle might emerge as, "Please let me jump your bones immediately."
Watching Elizabeth struggle, she couldn't help but be completely transfixed. The girl was obviously aware of the volume this was going to have, so she was fighting not to let it out- her breathing grew thick and short, and her vocal cords were just beginning to get involved in the build-up when she fought it down, harshly pinching her nostrils together. She swallowed hard, and tried sniffing as quietly as she could, her lips twitching a little. Gemma knew from experience that such forceful-feeling sneezes never just evaporated, and sure enough, within the next few seconds- just as Liz had taken her hand from her curvaceous nose- her big, teary tiger-eyes blinked rapidly and her nostrils began flaring and quivering as she concentrated harder and harder on holding back the sneeze.
All her efforts to defuse the oncoming explosion didn't seem to be working. Her nose suddenly twitched dramatically- Gemma couldn't tear her saucer-wide dark eyes from the wrinkled bridge of Liz's nose, especially as she could tell that Liz really couldn't help letting it out...
It was a disappointment, though. Liz managed to pinch her nose shut almost immediately, letting out half a sneeze and painfully stifling the rest- "HEEAAAAH-MMMP!"
"Bless you," Gemma said, as casually as she could manage under the circumstances.
Liz nodded, obviously still struggling. Another huge sneeze was coming fast, although she was still fighting it, scrunching her nose and intermittently pinching her nostrils with one hand. Then she groaned softly and whispered to Gemma, "Oh God- here it comes."
All anticipation, Gemma passed her a napkin from the steel dispenser on the table. Liz said, thinly, "Thanks," and then her tearing eyes squeezed tightly shut. She breathed in deeply and then managed to stifle half a sneeze against the napkin, just as she had done before.
"Hah-MMPtchoo!" Still struggling, Liz closed her eyes tightly, gulped back her breath, and, after a short struggle, forced another sneeze to stay down.
It didn't stay down for long.
She gave a deep, sharp gasp, "Aaahh!" clamped the tissue against her nose and sneezed powerfully- "HaaaaaAAAASHHOOO!" It was so violent that it bent her double. The "SHOO!" had a peculiar tone that extremely embarrassed girls always seem to end their sneezes with, high and shrill.
"God, that was a big sneeze!" Liz breathed, sounding relieved and satisfied. She shook her head like a wet dog drying itself, before throwing Gemma a fetching smile. "Sorry. I really needed that. I mean, I could've gone on stifling them, but...somehow it's just not enough."
"Hay fever?" Gemma asked in a tone she trusted didn't sound too hopeful, looking into the dregs of her coffee.
Liz shook her head. "Dust, I think. That always gets up my nose." She ran a licked finger across the surface of the windowsill and brought it up grey. "Look at this," she said in a voice tinged with disgust.
Gemma pretended utter disapproval, a look which her own mother had been superb at creating.
"I'm lucky that my office is so well-cleaned!" Liz exclaimed. "Just a little bit of dust, and I get the sneezes like you wouldn't believe..."
"What are you doing for the rest of the afternoon?" Gemma asked pleasantly, running a hand through her shining, cropped black hair. She was already feeling a little bit hot just thinking about what she was going to propose.
Liz checked her watch, sniffing wetly. "Nothing till five. Why?"
"I made you miss the rest of the movie earlier," Gemma said. "Let me treat you to another one. They're showing Some Like It Hot next door. Are you up for it?"
Liz grinned. "I love Marilyn Monroe!"
"So do I," said Gemma with a cheeky grin. "Total fox, no? They don't make them like that any more."
Liz shot her a naughty-girl look, but didn't complain when Gemma took her arm and walked her the few steps into the theatre. When Gemma paid for both of them, she giggled like a schoolgirl who knew she wasn't going to get caught. Gemma shot her a careful look, wondering if she was going to get a little more than she'd bargained for. For some reason, she couldn't help but hope this was the case.
Liz was marvelling at how quickly things between herself and Gemma were developing. Lunch with a tomboyish lesbian you'd met in a cinema was one thing, but letting her actually take you to the movies seemed...well, like a date. Liz had only been into men for as long as she could remember, and she was adventurous enough to want to enjoy this out-of-her-life experience and just let it wash over her. Feeling vaguely nervous and giddy, she kept smiling at Gemma while wondering in the back of her mind whether she was handling it all the right way. She was pretty sure she had given her a good impression, asides for that little dust-induced fiasco in the restaurant; she was certain that she had caught Gemma's interest and could only hope things would continue in the same vein. However, her itchy nose wasn't about to grant her reprieve.
She had been struggling to keep a particularly tickly-feeling sneeze in since she'd stepped into the lobby, and once the red velvet curtain went up, discharging a visible cloud of yellowish dust into Liz's upturned, expectant face, she gave a little squeak and clapped her long, expressive hands to her nose. Gemma felt only the faintest of tickles, which left her in a few minutes, but Liz looked like she was in agony. Even though the only other people who attended lunchtime shows generally took bottles wrapped in brown paper bags in with them, smoked dope in a daze which was never quite penetrated by anything on the screen from Elizabeth Taylor to Jean-Claude Van Damme, or even slept in their seats for movie after movie, Liz still cast an anguished look around to see who was going to hear her sneeze. Then she hunched down in her seat, her mouth wide open, breathing in a heavy, laboured fashion that always reminded Gemma of a satisfied lover reaching orgasm.
As Gemma rooted in her bag for a tissue for this beautiful, itchy-nosed girl, Liz noticed what she was doing and held a long finger under her quivering nose, trying to stem back the tickles until she could muffle her poor nose in something. The itches and tickles she'd had in the deli had done a little to clog her nasal passages and irritate the delicate membranes of her nostrils, and she knew that the fast-approaching sneeze would be truly incredible.
Unfortunately, Gemma was ditsy and disorganised. Her bag was full: walkman, leaflets, smash change, playing cards, uncapped lipsticks, half-unwrapped sweets, pens, pencils, notes, phone numbers...and not a tissue in sight. Well, dammit, she hadn't planned for this!
Liz let out a small, urgent noise to let Gemma know just how incipient the sneeze was, which in turn made the inside of her nose vibrate until she gasped and breathed in a fresh salvo of dust. She almost whimpered in response and then, dropping her hands from her desperately contorting face, she took in another breath, allowing the ticklish yellow dust to plague her poor nose even more. Gemma knew the feeling- it didn't matter how embarrassing it would be to let this out, the pressure of holding it in was just too much to bear. Liz's body convulsed with each breath.
"Ehhhhhhh...uhhhhhh...ahhhhhhh...ahhhh- AHHH- AAASSHHOOO!"
It was a huge and bellowing explosion that rang out clearly throughout the entire cinema, like she didn't care about anything but getting that infernal tickle out of her nose. Then she sneezed again. And again. Gemma could almost feel a pulse beating between her legs, a feeling of warmth and light spreading from that core throughout her whole body.
"Ahhh... ahhh... AAhhhh... AHHH... AHHH-HISHOOOO!" Tiny but plentiful drops of spray escaped through the gaps between her long, slender fingers.
Gemma felt her clitoris getting erect, her labia achingly sensitive. She thought about mouths, about lips, about a tongue between her swollen, flushed folds, licking her clit, as the gorgeous girl at her side let go with sneeze after huge, wet, unrestrained sneeze. She watched the gold-edged contours of Liz's superbly contorting face in the dusty-soft light, her heavy-lidded eyes half-closed and her nostrils trembling, her lush lips open, damp and quivering uncontrollably as she made soft, desperate little sounds in the response to the burning, tense pressure in her cold-tender nostrils.
"Ahhh--AhhhHAHSHOOOO!" Liz groaned and furiously rubbed her nose. "God, sorry, Gemma, I- I-huhHuhAHSHOO!"
Gemma shifted in her seat, thinking about Elizabeth's shivering, quivering nose letting out sneeze after stunning sneeze that exploded directly in front of her, and mirrored the tremors that rushed through her body. As Liz wiped furiously at her nose, tried to catch the worst of the sneezes in the crook of her elbow, furiously pinching her nostrils in a futile attempt to stifle the explosive finales to her sneezes, Gemma wondered who was really being tortured here, and which one of them was going to explode first.
"huh-ahhhhhh... Huh...haISSSH! Huh...ha-ISSHHH! Jesus, my nose is so ah-ahhah-hah-ISSHHHOOO!"
Elizabeth muffled her sneezes at first, but they got steadily more violent, and when the drunks in the front row started turning around to look at her, she bolted, long denimed legs flashing up the dark velvet aisle, her body convulsed with sneezes as she ran. Gemma grabbed their bags and followed. She waited outside the toilet cubicle, listening as Elizabeth's laboured, unselfconscious build-ups grew in frequency and then exploded, forcing the last of the potent dust out of her nose, interspersed with desperate exclamations of, "oh God," and "I can't believe this!" in between sneezes. Finally, after a protracted period of nose-blowing Liz emerged, looking flushed and beautiful, nose as red as a beacon, a flush licking its way from her cheekbones to the neckline of her lilac vest. The flush deepened when she saw Gemma patiently waiting for her.
"I am so sorry about that!" she exclaimed, her embarrassment almost overwhelming. What had she been thinking earlier, about making a good impression? "I swear, I think I'm getting a cold."
Gemma pretended unconcern. "Hmm?" she fussed with her hair in the mirror. "Why?"
Liz hoisted herself up onto the sink, girlishly swinging her long, feline legs. "Well, I've just been feeling so sneezy all day! This morning I woke up with the tickles. That's always the first sign. I mean, when I have a cold, I don't usually feel too bad. Just sneezy. And...and even talking about it..." she furiously rubbed her nose with one smooth, downy forearm, "Oh God, don't you just hate this! When- when you want to, but it won't-" her beautiful eyes began to water afresh before shutting tightly and her smooth, generous breasts heaved dramatically, making the lacy bodice of her vest shake precariously. Her mouth opened,
"Ohhhhhh...." her nostrils flared dramatically, "Ohaaah...ahhh...AHISSHHHOOOO!"
Restraint had never been one of Gemma's virtues. Gently, she reached up, grasped Liz's shoulders, and kissed her soft, damp lips. What amazed her was that after a few seconds of surprised tension, Liz responded, gently cupping her hot hands around Gemma's neck and stroking softly, her lips becoming firm against Gemma's. It was Liz who delicately poked the tip of her little cat's tongue between Gemma's lips and began curiously to explore the girl's mouth, while Gemma allowed her hands to drift to the warm heaviness of Elizabeth's breasts.
Their first sex was carried out in reverent silence as Gemma worshipped the beautiful body before her. Even though she knew there were no other women in the building, just the old gay manager Mr. Dawson and the drunks downstairs, she locked the door and then slowly undid the metal buttons of Elizabeth's thin, soft, obviously well-loved Levis. Matters were made easier by Elizabeth's habit of not wearing underwear, so she compliantly thrust her jeans down to her knees. With Liz perched on the sink, Gemma's mouth was exactly level with Elizabeth's pliant, creamy wetness. Gemma gently tongued the beautiful, fine whorls of her sex which undulated like those of a firm, cool shell, although gradually Elizabeth grew so hot she felt she was about to melt, stifling little cries of pleasure by biting on her wrist, eyes shut in ecstasy. Gemma wasn't certain whether this was the first time Elizabeth had been with a woman, though she had an educated idea, and decided that this experience should be slow and wonderful- it should take as long as the girl could hold out.
She moved from the dim fire of Elizabeth's bush to the creamy paradise of her breasts, tonguing her nipples, taking their heat between her lips, bathing them slowly and sensually with her tongue while her slender, flickering fingers kept Elizabeth hot and lubricated, gently brushing the swollen button at the very edge of her opening from time to time, causing Elizabeth to moan, her head jolting back sharply against the fly-speckled mirror, biting furiously on her thumb to stifle her screams of utter pleasure.
Then, just when she knew Elizabeth was about to explode, Gemma dipped her tongue back into Liz's hot, slick sex and gave the girl a clitoral tongue-bath that was enough to drive any woman insane, sucking the fleshy knot of her clit with the gentlest, most insistent pressure, feeling the girl's precious heat spurt and melt over her receptive lips and tongue. Elizabeth's legs flew out around Gemma's shoulders and her back arched, catlike, as she howled with pleasure, bright hair streaming out behind her as she sensually rocked her head from side to side.
They both remembered the night that had followed in a hazy, lust-drunk series of images. Gemma's flat, trying to talk sensibly to each other over a just-opened bottle of Chilean Chardonnay, music on the stereo, one thing, then another. Elizabeth's sensitive, easily-irritated nose took exception to Gemma's rather lax cleaning habits and registered its complaint in the form of a dreadful tickle that she'd tried valiantly to hold in, having no idea that was exactly what Gemma didn't want her to do. Her nose felt so tickly...
She swallowed hard, giving a deep, wet sniff.
"You all right, beautiful?" Gemma asked intently.
"Yeah- yeah..." Liz said breathily, nodding politely. Still, the urge lingered in the back of her nose, refusing to be quelled. Her nose began to run, so she wiped it with the back of her hand, her nostrils flaring in and out gently, a sensuous rhythm which didn't fail to get Gemma's attention.
Gemma's huge, dark eyes held an expression Liz didn't often see. Not quite sympathy or concern and not quite desire. Fascination.
"You have to sneeze, don't you?" Gemma said softly.
Elizabeth nodded, burying her elegant nose in her palm as her mouth opened slightly, her chin beginning to tremble. "I...aahhhh...I think I might..."
Gemma got up and reached over Elizabeth to get at the box of tissues on the coffee table; her own allergies had been acting up somewhat recently. Elizabeth furiously rubbed at her wearisome nose, but Gemma purposely didn't move in time, her face directly level with Elizabeth's, knowing Liz couldn't hold out much longer.
"Ah!" It was more of an exclamation, a warning, her tearing eyes indicating the urgency of the situation.
Gemma didn't move. She couldn't, and as she froze, the sneeze came upon Elizabeth so quickly that she didn't have time to get her hands to her nose. "CSHOOOO!"
She copiously sprayed Gemma. "Oh my God, I'm- hah-AH-" This time, Gemma got a tissue to Liz's nose, feeling the force of the wet sneeze through the thin paper.
"Bless you, sweetheart," she said gently, stroking the trembling tip of Liz's nose with a soft finger. It tickled unbearably and Liz choked out, "Don't - you're gonna make me sneeze again!"
Needing no further invitation, Gemma's finger pressed expertly against her nostrils. "Sorry. That better?"
"Aahhh-" Liz breathed out gently, and then suddenly her big hazel eyes widened in panic as Gemma took away her finger. Her eyes closed as though she was praying to get that tickle out of her nose, her mouth contorted into a pained grimace and she let out an enormous, forceful, almost painful sounding, "HaaaaaAAAAISHHOOO!" straight in Gemma's face, this time on purpose. Gemma rubbed her cheek, grinning.
Liz sulkily held a damp wrist beneath her nose, desperate for a tissue. "Serves you right for playing with me like that!"
Gently, Gemma wiped the girl's nose and kissed her gently on the forehead as if asking for forgiveness.
"Sorry. I couldn't resist it. Better out than in, y'know."
She cheekily kissed Elizabeth full on the lips, feeling Elizabeth struggle hard not to sniff even though she responded eagerly. Gemma didn't want her to be as miserable as she seemed, so she passed Liz a thick handful of tissues so she could give her nose a good blow. As well, she still didn't want Liz to make the connection between her arousal and Elizabeth's nose-tickles, so she managed to restrain herself for another hour.
The two of them cuddled up by the fire with elegant glasses of wine, getting slowly mellow. Another bottle. Jazz. It was home ground, definite seduction stuff. Getting the munchies, the blues, taking comfort from each other's warmth. Billie Holiday. Dancing real slow in the dim light of Gemma's subdued lighting. This time they took all the time they needed to slowly discover each other's bodies; the dips, the curves, touching, stroking, licking and finally ending up in bed. Hot soft limbs wrapped around each other. The last of "Stormy Weather" became nothing on the stereo as they fell asleep.