Take Me Out...To the Ball Game
"The Florida Swordfish pick in the 58th round is: Taylor Lowell?"
"Oh my God! Taylor, honey, they just called your name. You're going to Florida!" The slim woman jumped up and down as she hugged her daughter.
"I know Mama, I know." Taylor said as the weight of what had just happened dawned on her.
Looking at the TV as her name flashed on the screen, Taylor couldn't believe she'd been drafted into Major League Baseball, the gender barrier had just been broken.
Her mind wandered back over the past 3 years - they had raced by so quickly; classes in between baseball practice, weightlifting and fitness training. Unbelievable that she was suddenly seeing the fruits of her labor on television - the first woman drafted into the Major Leagues. She sat down hard, on the couch her mom bouncing around their living room with excitement.
Taylor had attended a small college in her home state of Colorado. It had been a fluke that she had started playing baseball for them. She'd originally gotten a scholarship to play softball, but lack of funding and bad recruitment had left the team in shambles during her freshman year.
Her best friend Jimmy Miller was a pitcher for the baseball team and one day had asked if she would go out and catch pitches for him. While they were there a few buddies from the team showed up. One thing led to another and soon they had taken their positions on the infield. After each pitch Taylor hurled the ball to one of the bases stopping the steal.
As the afternoon went on the coach got word about their pick-up practice and had shown up at the field. He was quite impressed with Taylor's play. He could see the potential in the young woman. So several weeks later when a back-up catcher had to drop out of school unexpectedly the coach asked Taylor if she would like to join the team.
"Oh my God, drafted into the majors!" Shaking her head in disbelief.
Two weeks later.
They were holed up on the family ranch in southeastern Colorado.
Taylor sat at their kitchen table with her parents and her college baseball coach, the usual lightness the family enjoyed was absent this afternoon.
"What we need is someone to handle this…all this." Taylor's Dad said as his hands swept across the table filled with offers to interview his daughter, to have her sponsor their product or various other offers that somehow would exploit Taylor's place in history. Since Taylor had been drafted into the major leagues, there hadn't been a moment's peace and the pressure was getting to them all.
"I think that's exactly what you need. Also some thought should go into what exactly Taylor wants out of this experience. That will help you decide which offers to accept and which to decline." They all looked at the tall dark haired young woman; her tall strong body slumped against the table. She thought for several moments.
"I want history to say that I played baseball well and contributed to the game…I guess I also want to help pave the way for other women to play in the Majors." Taylor said staring into the distance her head resting on her hands.
"Well that's a start honey - a darn good one." Her Mom patted her shoulder and then turned to Coach Granger.
"Bob, do you have any ideas about who we can hire to help us deal with this?"
"Yeah I went to college with this guy who works at an agency in Denver, they handle athletes. Let me give him a call and see if I can get a sense of what we need."
Taylor went outdoors with her father and they squinted into the late June sun.
"I've got to get the rest of the swathing done by the end of the week." Taylor said looking toward the machine shed.
"You have to be in Florida right after the 4 of July - we'll have to bust ass to get the bales in by then." Her Dad commented.
They went into the shed and began changing the oil on the swathing machine, working together with ease, when they were almost finished they heard Jean call from the house.
"We need an agent. He's got a number of them and is going to fax over a list and some contracts."
"Don't we need to meet them before we hire them?" Asked Taylor a bit worried with the speed.
"Yes but I wanted to take a look at the contracts to see how much this is going to cost you." Coach Granger answered.
"Good idea." Her Father agreed.
"Shoot! This is freaky, I just want to play baseball, I don't want to be hassled by all this." Taylor complained her green eyes uncertain.
"I know Hon, but some of these things can help you. You can get yourself a nice little nest egg. You just need to be choosey and pick carefully."
"I'm already making over a hundred fifty thousand dollars this year. I could live on that for a decade." Taylor reminded.
The adults chuckled.
"Taylor, it's not so cheap to live in Florida. You're not going to have a freezer filled with meat and produce. You'll have to travel, get a vehicle, pay insurance, rent. It adds up." Her Father ticked off one after another.
"Ugh." Taylor groaned.
Taylor threw her gloves on a shelf in the rear entryway and checked her jeans for dust. Her work boots thumped as she kicked them off. She used her sock covered toes to stand them upright.
"Taylor! We're eating in 20 minutes - you've got time for a shower."
Taylor scrubbed her body and then shampooed her shoulder length dark brown hair. The sweat and dirt from the hay fields washed away down the drain and she was in clean fresh athletic shorts and a t-shirt in 15 minutes.
"After supper we'll take a look at some of the folks Bob scared up, there are a bunch of them." Her Dad said.
"Oh goodie!" Exclaimed Taylor rolling her eyes.
After the table was cleared they all sat down at the kitchen table.
"Looks like there are five folks to look at. Bob said they could send more if none of these will do."
They each chose a file and began reading. Passing them back and forth and around until they had look closely at each one.
"Well…I like this older guy some - he's got some experience, seems to have a solid dependable record with his athletes." Her Dad stated eyebrows raised in question to the women at the table.
"Yeah I thought that too - but Dad…I'm wondering if he'd be a bit set in his ways - not too interested in the…significance of…" Taylor shrugged, "this whole thing?"
"Yep - I think I agree with that Hon - he's not going to be right, though I did like his solid performance." Her Mom agreed nodding her head.
Her parent's looked at Taylor.
"What's your gut feeling Taylor?" Her Dad asked her.
"This one - the woman." She held up the folder. "For lots of reason actually. First I think I'd be most comfortable with the female…at least in this group of choices. Two -she's young. Three -her education is top notch. Four -she handles some good WNBA and WUSA talents. I think she'll understand the significance of my situation…and if she doesn't then…we'll look somewhere else? What do you think?"
Both parents nodded.
"Think she has the experience it will take? This is going to take some serious time and skill to sort out - I don't want you to get short changed in any way Taylor."
"Well let's meet with her and ask some questions." Her Mom offered.
"Yeah let's." Taylor agreed grinning. "And all I wanted to do was play baseball."
"Be careful what you wish for." Her Mom joked.
Taylor glanced again at the grainy black and white photograph that the agency had faxed. She held onto the file wanting to look more closely later, in the privacy of her bedroom.
Natalie slid her carry-on carefully out of the overhead and proceeded out of the plane. This was an exciting day for her - meeting woman whose place in history was certain, maybe playing a part in this historical moment herself. The first woman ever to be drafted into the Major Leagues, very exciting stuff.
Sliding her legs into the rental car she checked her appearance before she started the car. Her clothes still felt fresh, tan colored linen slacks and a sleeveless button down linen blouse in off white.
Hopefully she'd still feel fresh in two hours when she arrived at their ranch. Crossing her fingers she drove out of the rental car parking facility.
Taylor was pacing. She'd climbed up and down the stairs a dozen times in the last 30 minutes, watching the windows carefully as she crossed the living room and into the kitchen.
"Has she worn a rut in the carpet yet Daddy?" Her Mom called from the kitchen where she was putting a cucumber salad in the refrigerator.
"Nothing new, she wore this path in the carpet…what was it…on prom night I think - it's been here ever since." Taylor's Dad called back from his recliner in the living room. They laughed as Taylor scowled at them both.
"I hate waiting." Taylor stated clearly.
"Good things come to those who wait." Her Mom sang cheerfully. Her father chuckled.
"Oh God." Taylor groaned and climbed back up the stairs to her room. She looked at herself carefully in the full length mirror. Jeans and a dark green polo shirt. Should I change? Into what?
It was rather warm in the upstairs and she made her way down the stairs so she wouldn't begin perspiring. The way she felt she was going to need a shower before Ms. Fulk arrived.
Natalie was just out of the car when a tall dark haired man came out onto the porch. His friendly smile put Natalie at ease, mostly.
"So you found us." He stated.
"Yes. Your directions were impeccable." Natalie said smiling as she approached.
"Natalie Fulk." She said extending her hand in greeting. His hand enveloped hers in a strong grip.
"Jim Lowell." He stated. "Come on inside with me, Taylor and her mother are in the kitchen."
Taylor looked up from dish drying duty, her mother's idea to try and calm her down. Her green eyes watched Natalie's warm brown eyes looking curiously around for a moment before they met Taylor's.
"I'm Karen Lowell, Taylor' Mom." Karen interrupted their moment. Natalie tried to concentrate on Karen as they shook hands but really wanted to continue taking in Taylor.
"And this is our star, Taylor." Jim said waving at his daughter with equal parts pride and teasing.
"Dad - please." Taylor scowled at him. He laughed.
"Hello Taylor." Natalie said gently, placing her briefcase on the floor and walking to the sink where Taylor was standing.
Taylor felt a little dazed, the picture she had been looking at for the past week didn't do Natalie justice…at all. Tall and slender with strawberry blond hair styled in a short, simple, sophisticated style.
As they shook hands Taylor noticed the fresh clean smell of…it was sort of…oh hell, she couldn't put a name to it but it smelled wonderful.
"It's a pleasure to meet you." Natalie watched Taylor carefully wondering why she hadn't said anything.
"It's nice to meet you also." Taylor finally found her voice and her manners.
"Can I get you something refreshing to drink?" Karen asked. "We'll just sit down at the table here if that's okay? We've got lemonade, water, cokes."
"Lemonade would be lovely."
Two hours later Taylor and Natalie went outside. They had discussed the business at hand. What Natalie could do to get Taylor's financial/sport related offers in order? They all liked the way Natalie handled herself, she was very professional and Taylor liked her a lot. Her parents seemed satisfied that the choice Taylor had made was the right one.
They walked quietly for several minutes. Taylor felt shy but wanted to get Natalie to talk so that she could get to know the agent better.
"I have to go down to Florida in 5 days. They want to get me on the off season training program. I'll be there for a week."
"All right I'll be there."
"Why?" Taylor said shocked.
"Because I'm your agent Taylor. It's important that I know everything; like your physical condition. Plus - you can't be down there alone; it would be like throwing a lamb to wolves." Taylor stopped walking, thinking about lambs.
"Don't ever compare me to a lamb - we have 2 thousand head of sheep out here and damn, they are the dumbest animals on the planet." Taylor grinned and shook her finger at the agent.
"I apologize and bow to the sheep expert." Natalie said chuckling. "But you can't go down there alone there will be a lot of people who are going to try and get to you whenever you show up in public Taylor. You're a star."
"I haven't done a damn thing yet." Taylor grumbled.
"Yes you have. You're the first woman to ever be drafted into Major League Baseball. This is a BIG deal and smart people will want to exploit that." Natalie said.
Taylor looked like a deer caught in headlights and Natalie laid a hand on the athlete's arm comfortingly.
"But don't worry about it Taylor - that's what you hired me for. I'll take care of it so you can concentrate on baseball." Natalie assured.
"My Dad wanted to go but he can't really get away this time of year, there's just too much going on here on the ranch."
"I'll assure him we'll be fine." Natalie said understanding Taylor's concern.
"Thanks. I'd love for him to be there but he would hate the media circus more than I will and boy will I hate it."
Natalie stayed over night as planned since there wasn't a hotel for over a 100 miles. She actually found herself enjoying the relaxed atmosphere of this family. Taylor was fun but very serious about playing baseball. She expected to work hard and she expected to play and when Natalie drove off the following afternoon Natalie was quite convinced that she would.
Natalie leaned back against a pillar and kept her eyes on the gate for Taylor. Her façade was relaxed and pleasantly waiting…but between the cell phone that had been stuck to her ear for the past 48 hours and the overheated laptop the agent had been in a constant state of excitement.
Taylor's imminent arrival was adding even more of the same. This opportunity was thrusting them both into realms they hadn't been in before. To have snagged this particular athlete was a real coup- history in the making is exciting stuff.
Taylor glanced around the waiting area, no one was waiting. Oh yeah! Natalie said she would have to wait outside the gate area because of all the extra security. Taylor took a deep breath and followed along with the other passengers. Please be here. Taylor grinned when she saw Natalie.
"Hi." Taylor said as she approached the smiling agent.
Natalie pushed away from the pillar she had been leaning on.
"Hello Taylor, welcome to Miami."
Taylor's grin grew taking in Natalie looking fresh and relaxed in stone colored Capri pants and a sleeveless chambray top.
"Thank you for picking me up."
"My pleasure. Let's get your luggage." Natalie said turning for the baggage claim area. "Let's get your luggage. I got us hotel rooms at the Hyatt - we'll drop in there and put your things away. At 4:00 p.m. you have an appointment to have a physical…get ready to sweat." Natalie smiled.
"Oh goodie." Taylor replied shifting her backpack and walking with Natalie through the airport.
Taylor wiped the sweat from her forehead with a fresh towel. Several other towels had vanished during the last couple of hours. She waited patiently for the next test…breathing more slowly now that she wasn't sprinting on a treadmill. She looked up and saw Natalie and smiled. Natalie winked and continued her close watch on Taylor's physical.
Thirty minutes later the Florida Swordfish physician declared, "Taylor, you're in superb condition, it's been a pleasure."
Taylor smiled and shook his hand, then went out to find Natalie.
"Hey." Taylor said breathily when she found the agent.
"Hi - how are you feeling?" Natalie asked gently.
"Tired I'll bet."
"I sure won't have to work out today after that."
"Good. Why don't you go shower and meet me back here." Natalie said with raised eyebrows.
Natalie finally relaxed when Taylor disappeared into the locker room. Watching the athlete for the past several hours had been intoxicating. Her physic was superb and her fitness level incredibly impressive. Natalie's mind ran through scenarios about how best to promote this unique athlete. The agent felt sure Taylor was going to be a major talent and her opportunities if handled correctly would make them both a great deal of money.
Money…watching this tall, strong, young woman today she realized the athlete was drafted for a damn good reason. Taylor was a force of nature, confident, powerful and determined. Not to mention attractive and sexy - yeah and if I had absolutely no ethics I'd be after her myself. Fuckin' letch- just the very reason why you're not going in the locker room and watch her shower.. She chuckled as she chastised herself.
Taylor took a hot shower letting the water clean and refresh her body. With her hair wet and combed back she put on khaki cargo shorts and a tight navy T-shirt, she slipped her feet into a pair of sandals and shouldered her equipment bag.
"Any chance of food in the near future?" Taylor asked after finding the agent.
"I figured you would be starving, I stood and watched and I'm famished." Natalie smiled.
When they were seated in the restaurant they discussed the Physical and Florida and made small talk until after they ordered.
"Tomorrow you'll meet Jay Schmidt, he's going to analyze your fitness needs and set up a program for you."
"It begins at 9:00 a.m. but I imagine it will last most of the day." They continued discussing Taylor's budding career until the food arrived. Taylor was tired of talking about herself and what she really wanted to do was get to know Natalie better.
"Let's talk about you for a while - I'm sick of talking about myself." Taylor said smiling charmingly.
Natalie laughed. "This whole thing is about you Taylor. We haven't even scratched the surface - there are so many things to go through…and to decide."
"Tonight?" Taylor asked amused.
"Well I guess it doesn't have to be tonight." Natalie acquiesced smiling at the athlete. Back off a bit, she's tired and just wants to relax.
"So, can I ask you a question?" Taylor requested.
"Sure." Natalie agreed easily.
"Are you seeing anyone?"
Natalie choked on her sip of water and it burned its way out her nose. Grabbing her napkin off her lap she blotted at her face clearing her throat by coughing.
"Are you alright?" Taylor asked concerned.
"Yes." The agent wheezed while holding up her hand. "Fine." When Natalie had quit coughing and was quiet again their eyes met. Taylor raised an eyebrow and Natalie tried to stall by returning the gesture.
"Are you?" Taylor grinned.
"Why do you ask?" Natalie hedged.
"Why do you think?" Taylor returned.
"Um…I have no idea?"
"Because I want to know." Taylor said slowly, acting as if the agent was simple.
"Because…" Taylor frowned, "Is there some reason you don't want me to know if you're single or not?"
"No." Natalie answered quietly
"Then..?" The Athlete said encouragingly.
"Yes I'm single." Natalie answered watching Taylor closely trying to understand what Taylor was really getting at. Their eyes held contact for a long moment.
Natalie's hands were nervous so she picked up her water and took a sip again trying to calm down.
"Would you like to go out on a date with me?" Taylor asked.
Natalie spewed water onto her plate this time, choking again.
"What's with you?" Taylor said teasing, her eyebrows raised.
Natalie shook her head astonished. "Did you just ask me out on a date?"
"Yes." Taylor answered calmly.
"Taylor…" Natalie was too stunned to organize her thoughts. Taylor waited patiently while Natalie's thoughts raced. "Taylor we…I appreciate your invitation but it wouldn't be appropriate for us to date."
"Because I work for you."
Taylor thought about that. Damn…did that really matter? She wasn't sure how to proceed but she didn't want to let it go either. "Any other reasons?"
"Well…" Natalie was flustered by this full-court press. "Um…age difference? We don't know the first thing about each other. If we did date it could jeopardize our professional relationship…which has hardly had a chance to get off the ground yet." I'm really getting going now, Natalie thought.
Taylor held up her hand stopping the list from lengthening. "Dating will help us get to know each other." She told Natalie laughing.
"Taylor." Natalie said, "We can't date."
"So you have no interest in dating me?" Taylor asked trying a different tactic.
Struck dumb once again, the Agent scrambled to gather her wits.
"Why would you think I would date a woman?" Natalie asked trying to throw a wrench in this crazy conversation.
Taylor's grin grew. "Just a hunch…"She smiled and then frowned, "But hey, if you're not interested and I misspoke then, I apologize. It wasn't my intension to offend you." Taylor's hazel eyes turned stormy as they watched Natalie.
"Taylor I'm not offended…I'm flattered but I work for you and…we don't know each other at all. I'm excited about this opportunity to help you in your career." Natalie said carefully trying not to upset the Athlete. They both sighed at this point.
"Okay. I'll accept that for the time being…IF you agree to go out with me after…we know each other better."
"Taylor." Natalie complained.
"Come on." Taylor coaxed charmingly. "Let's say 5 months from now I'll ask you out again. You'll agree and we'll see how it goes?"
The Agent shook her head smiling slightly, trying her damndest to ignore the charming Athlete and her temping offer.
"Tay..." Taylor interrupted the Agent. "Natalie, what do you have to lose right now by saying tonight - that in December you'll go out on a date with me?"
"Okay Taylor. In December I'll go out with you IF you ask. I really doubt this is going to be something you'll want 5 months from now though."
Taylor smiled and held her tongue. D-e-t-e-r-m-i-n-e-d was a low-key word to describe the Athlete, from the first moment she had seen Natalie's photograph on the fax she had wanted to pursue…something. Letting it go was impossible but waiting was doable.
"Awesome." Taylor replied smiling, and then quickly she turned the conversation onto other things making Natalie's head spin once again.
"Four million dollars is nothing to sneeze at." Natalie pretended seriousness.
Taylor faked a sneeze and they laughed together.
"I haven't even proven myself yet. I'm not taking four million dollars and saying I like a car-part chain store that I've never been in."
Natalie was silently pleased, once again, that Taylor knew her mind and stuck to a code of ethics that she held sacred. Other athletes would be swearing allegiance to oil filters within 2 days but Taylor had held to her values from day one.
"Four million." Natalie raised her eyebrows enticingly.
"What would be your cut?' Taylor teased her fingers gently squeezing Natalie's shoulders as they looked at the computer screen. As always Natalie tried not to respond to Taylor's touch. The past 4 months they had spent a great deal of time together becoming solid friends. They worked well together and Natalie had quickly understood that Taylor was fun in all things but serious about her career and serious about wanting to be an integral part of every choice made.
Taylor didn't let a day go by, when Natalie was in town, without touching the Agent in some way. Once in a while she sweetly handed flowers to a speechless Natalie.
She did her best to not come on too strong but she didn't want Natalie to forget that they had unfinished business.
Taylor finished her shower and toweled off. Through the open door she could hear Natalie banging around in the kitchen. Taylor smiled - it had taken forever to convince Natalie that when she was in town she should stay with Taylor in the house that she had purchased. Her parents couldn't see throwing money down the drain, which is what they considered renting. So she and her parents had found a decent 3 bedroom house and Taylor had moved in on Halloween.
I'm yanking food out of the refrigerator with more force than necessary. Natalie scowled to herself; she was frustrated pure and simple. Taylor hadn't taken to walking around the house naked yet but Natalie wouldn't put it past the Athlete. I'm not exactly known for my patience or for resisting temptation. Then why don't you just go out with her- dumbass? She isn't going to quit driving you nuts until you throw yourself at her feet and say 'yes.'Grrrr.
"Taylor please think about this." Natalie pleaded just 20 minutes later, completely ignoring the fact that she had seriously considered jumping Taylor's bones when she entered the kitchen.
"What do you think I've been doing for the past 4 ¼ months?"
"What I mean is - I still work for you…nothing has changed."
"Things are different now. We do know each other better, we've become friends." Natalie shook her head. "Don't make me remind you that you've already agreed to this." Taylor threatened.
"Alright Taylor listen…if we date and…let's say you aren't interested, or I'm not, in pursuing anything after…whatever period of time…what then? Are you going to be angry with me? Will you still want me to manage your career? Because I like this job and I don't want to have my career wrecked -when I could behave in a way that would ensure that both my job, that I love, and my friendship, that I cherish, wouldn't be harmed." Her dark eyes pleaded with Taylor for understanding.
"Natalie - your career and our friendship are not in jeopardy at all. You know that I am not immature and I'm not emotionally unbalanced. If there are valid reasons why a dating relationship isn't working between us, then we will agree to step back and continue as we are right now, friends and business associates. Please tell me you trust me to act toward you in a respectful, mature manner."
Natalie smiled slightly. "I do trust you Taylor I'm just trying to…"
"Talk me out of this because you're afraid."
"Yeah." Natalie agreed sighing.
"I'm hoping that you're afraid for reasons other than your career."
"Oh yeah, it's quite a list." Natalie said smiling wanly.
Taylor continued her regimented days. Exercising and preparing for baseball season. Her excitement to begin a dating relationship with Natalie was on her mind constantly.
Natalie was apprehensive but couldn't deny the allure of dating the Athlete. Scheduling and contacts kept her busy but not busy enough to get a break from the constant thrum of their upcoming date.
"We sure aren't starting with baby steps here."
"I've had to wait so long that I thought we should go all out. I figure if I impress you I can get you into bed by the end of the weekend." Taylor said grinning.
"Taylor Lowell." Natalie looked mock glared at the Athlete and then shook her head. "I'm going to pretend I didn't hear that."
Since Taylor had pushed a bouquet of tulips around the door of Natalie's bedroom this morning things had taken on a surreal quality. For the first time since they had met 5 ½ months before Natalie felt as if she could relax. All this time she had been fighting what she felt, finally she felt as if she could tease Taylor, touch her arm without feeling she was leading the Athlete on. She could flirt as she had longed to.
They had driven to Orlando and had checked into the Grand Floridian for a two-day 'date' to Disney World. It was slightly overwhelming but fitting since Taylor had never seen it and wouldn't have time once spring training began.
What day was better than this particular one with this particular company? Taylor wondered smiling as she paused to think back over the day. She had never had more…everything; fun, good conversation, exciting disagreements, frustration. Natalie was like coming home to a place you love more than any other; your heart and mind filled with anticipation and excitement with a level of comfort and familiarity you couldn't find anywhere else.
On the way up to their room Natalie was quiet. The day had been an eye-opener. Taylor had always been fun and attentive and interesting. Today she had been magical, saying and doing everything that Natalie had wanted a date to say to her but had never experienced. They had laughed so much her face muscles felt used. Watching Taylor all day and for once not having to hide her interest had been intoxicating but suddenly she was feeling nervous about the evening ahead. Just relax.
"We probably shouldn't sleep together tonight, huh?"
"Taylor!" Natalie said shocked. Taylor had been teasing her all day but she hadn't really thought that Taylor would actually bring it up once they were in the hotel room where it was actually possible to pursue.
"Hey - sorry but it's been quite a strain - abstaining these past months."
"Strain?" Natalie said incredulous. "You've…I…If you've been under some kind of strain it's of your own making. I'll remind you that it was you who couldn't keep your damn hands to yourself!"
Taylor grinned unrepentantly and Natalie just shook her head before…launching an attack and tackling Taylor onto the nearest bed and tickling the Athlete with every available resource. They wrestled around until the much stronger Athlete rolled Natalie onto her back and kissed her soundly. Their heavy breathing continued as Taylor tenderly kissed Natalie's cheeks, eyelids and nuzzled her cute nose.
Natalie buried her hands in Taylor's dark hair holding her close.
"You're so beautiful and sweet." Natalie whispered breathily. Taylor immediately moved back to Natalie's soft full lips. Their tongues dueled wetly.
Natalie was slipping deeper and deeper into a sexual haze - she pulled away burying her face in Taylor's neck.
"Shouldn't we wait before…?"
"Wait." Taylor groaned touching the side of Natalie's face gently. "I've been waiting for half a year."
Natalie chuckled smoothing her hands through Taylor's hair their eyes communicating.
"Might I remind you again -it was you torturing me almost daily."
"If I hadn't you would have been able to pretend that you didn't want to jump my bones. I didn't want that." Taylor said smiling.
"If you're not ready I'll wait. But I'm crazy about you. I want to touch you so much." Taylor whispered very serious now. "I want to be touched by you. I want to see your body - I want to worship it."
Natalie's eyes filled with tears. "No crying when I'm trying to make my moves." Taylor teased bring a sobbing chuckle from Natalie.
One last thing. "Do you have any experience at this?" Natalie asked her eyes questioning. Taylor felt like she had missed something - she ran the words over in her head. Experience? Then it dawned.
"Oh! You mean - am I a virgin?"
"No. I had a girlfriend in college, my sophomore year. It ended early my junior year." Taylor revealed. Natalie smiled and Taylor met her smile with one of her own.
"Are you?" Taylor teased.
"Hardly." Natalie laughed.
"I'll ask about that later but right now I'd like to talk about…"
Natalie pressed her lips to Taylor's stopping the rest of the sentence. Tongues dueling they learned each other's lips, careful students until kissing wasn't enough for either of them.
Their eyes met as Taylor's darkened gaze asked?
"Yes." Natalie whispered and Taylor began unbuttoning her blouse. The bra underneath was a miniscule piece of white lace and very fetching. Taylor spent time in appreciation of Natalie's choice.
"Did you wear this for me?" Taylor asked mouthing and sucking gently. Natalie's first response was 'no' but subconsciously she probably had.
"Yes." She admitted smiling at Taylor.
"It's lovely." Taylor reached behind Natalie and unhooked it efficiently. "But these are so beautiful they don't need any adornment."
Natalie's hands held Taylor close but her lower body began moving against Taylor's body.
"What's the problem? Why don't you just lie still?" Taylor said grinning evilly.
"Get your clothes off now!" Natalie demanded and Taylor pushed herself up onto her knees complying with Natalie's demands.
Natalie watched Taylor reveal her magnificent, strong body as she pushed her own shorts and underwear down her legs. The Agent could barely breathe as Taylor threw her shirt and bra across the room and pushed her shorts down strong muscled legs, leaning on one arm to lift her knees and kick them off.
"Jesus Taylor I could fucking orgasm just looking at you."
Taylor laughed rubbing her lower body against Natalie. "That is completely unnecessary - I'm willing and able to help." They grinned at each other and then smiles faded and the skin to skin contact they both wanted became reality.
"Ahhh, so sweet…so soft." Natalie breathed.
"Perfect." Taylor agreed as she began exploring the delicious skin covering Natalie's delectable body.
Natalie's hands swept gently but thoroughly over every silken piece of skin she could reach as Taylor's lips and tongue worshiped the Agent's breasts and supple stomach, their whispered pleasure in a rhythm that neither of them had experienced before.
Taylor breathed in the scent of Natalie's arousal and her mouth watered.
Taylor looked up gently kissing the fingers that cupped her cheek. "You are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen." Taylor whispered.
Natalie couldn't speak - what was going on between them was out of her realm of experience. Taylor was going to make her come with kisses and sweet words and she wanted to be able to wait…
Taylor mouth settled between Natalie's legs and her tongue dipped into the sweetness. "Oh T…Jesus…I'm coming." Natalie felt the orgasm burst through her loins and travel up to her breasts only to come out in a groan of pleasure before it traveled back down her body to the tip of her toes.
Taylor kissed her gently before pulling herself away from Natalie's desire and lying against the Agent's spent body. Natalie turned her head and buried it against Taylor's neck working to calm her erratic breathing.
Natalie wanted to say…soo much suddenly; but she wanted to pleasure the Athlete more. She wrapped one arm around Taylor and slid her own thigh in between. Gentle fingers opened Taylor and the Agent used her thigh to press against Taylor's wet need.
Their bodies pressed together slowly until Taylor's desire began to climb higher and required more enthusiasm. Natalie sank more deeply into Taylor's wetness and moved her entire body up and into Taylor's. Taylor's hips rose to meet Natalie; their rhythm increasing as she climbed - when their thrusting brought Taylor to orgasm she groaned and whispered sweet words over and over to Natalie.
In the aftermath they both held each other close leaving sweet light kisses against warm damp foreheads and rosy cheeks. Their eyes communicated the way only lovers can.
Natalie sat in the dugout smiling as she watched Taylor getting ready to bat. It was early June and she was watching Taylor take batting practice before the Swordfish went on the road for 3 games in Toronto.
This thing…between them felt just…right. Being in love was so different then it had been previously and the Agent wondered if she had ever really known love, other than familial, before. And it was soo fast but…when it was right apparently the time table took care of itself.
Taylor wanted the Agent to quit her position and concentrate fully on Taylor's career and their relationship. The Athlete had no qualms about talking about a permanent future between them. Natalie wanted that too but she was the more cautious and damaged of the two, having been through several relationships that hadn't worked out.
Really her choices had already been made. Since March when Taylor entered Spring Training in Miami - Natalie had waited and waited for Taylor to not make time for her because of the busy training schedule. And since regular season had started and Taylor had been starting at least one game in each series the Agent had expected Taylor's attention to be too divided. But nothing could have been further from the truth. Taylor was extremely busy and committed to her career but there was never a day and rarely even half a day that went by when Taylor was not making time to at least call Natalie and talk.
Once in a while when the Agent felt really cynical she thought that all this attention would end when she gave in and said 'yes' to something permanent but those moments were fewer and fewer as they became closer and closer. Their lovemaking was otherworldly. She felt more, needed more, gave more than she had ever thought possible.
Taylor could be trusted.
"Yes!" Natalie said standing as she watched the grounder Taylor hit blaze a path out into deep right center field. She was on second base before the ball arrived and bowed to the cheering teammates.
Taylor ran back to the dugout.
"Hey - great hit!"
"Thanks. I've got about 4 more to go and then I'll be ready."
"What do you want to do for supper tonight?"
"Something at home."
"Yes, I'm aware of that but what do you want to eat?" Natalie asked, aware that the Athlete always wanted to eat at home before games.
"Lot's of veggies and lean meat. I'll cook." Taylor said watching her teammates on the field.
"Afterwards I need to get…fucked." Taylor whispered. Natalie laughed with surprised delight.
"Who said?" Natalie demanded.
"Team doctor." Taylor said seriously.
"I'm not kidding."
"Give me the exact words he used Taylor."
"He said 'you need to get some…relaxation this evening'."
"So where did you come up with…I need to get fucked."
"It relaxes me." The Athlete replied easily.
"So your self-diagnoses is; you need it and I'm to provide it?"
"The doctor said." Taylor explained again.
"That you need to relax. I heard that the first time. I'm not sure sex is all that relaxing - you seem to get awfully excited about the whole thing - how can that be relaxing?" Natalie teased.
Taylor laughed, "I do get excited, I mean who wouldn't if they had you in bed with them. But afterwards I'm so relaxed I feel like a wet noodle. That's exactly what the doctor ordered."
"All right - but only cause the doctor insisted." The Agent teased her heart beating rapidly at Taylor's sweet words.
Ten years later…
"On behalf of the Florida Swordfish I want to say a heartfelt 'thank you' to the very first woman ever drafted into the majors." General Manager David Jones smiled at Taylor as the crowd roared. "Taylor has been a huge asset to our club for the past 12 years. We are all going to miss her enthusiasm for the game and her talent at the plate. I could go on and on here…it has been a phenomenal decade for all of us." Several players popped the tops off champagne bottles and poured a glass for Taylor. The general manager smiled. "I know that Taylor has a few words she'd like to say today so I'll hand the mike over to her…ladies and gentlemen…Taylor Lowell." The crowd went wild screaming and chanting Taylor, over and over.
Taylor walked out onto the field toward second base. The crowd wouldn't let her speak for several minutes.
"Thank you so much…I'm going to be a bit sentimental today so bear with me. I want to first say a special thank you to my parents who are here, and have been here for hundreds of games over the past 10 years they are frankly the best parents in the world." She turned toward their seats and threw them a kiss. "Thanks Mom and Dad." Waiting again for the crowd to quiet.
"This all began one afternoon when my friend Jim Miller, who pitched for the men's baseball team, asked me - I should say 'begged me' to come catch for a pick-up game. Coach Bob Granger happened by that day and set this all in motion. Jim is here today with his wife Noel and his daughters Jamie and Nicky. Thanks Jimmy. Bob and his wife Juanita are here also - Bob…thanks for more than I can ever say." The crowd cheered and Taylor tried to get her emotions under control.
"To David Jones and the Florida Swordfish management for first -the chance to play and then the quality management to do something different than the norm and succeed. Thanks David."
"To this great bunch of guys who I have shared this incredible experience with - especially to Harvey, Dale and Luke, also Jason and Tyler. They've been here with me from the beginning and I couldn't have chosen a better support group. They are however pigs in every other way." The crowd roared with laughter. They bowed to each other smiling.
"To the coaching staff for so much support in fitness, guidance and superb on field coaching; they had to break out of the mold to make sure that the female body could expand and compete at this level and they rose to the occasion with flying colors. I appreciate it." The coaching staff and Taylor bowed to each other.
"This experience has been so amazing but it wouldn't have been possible without the support and love of my girl Natalie. To Natalie." Taylor lifted her glass as she looked to the seat that her precious partner always sat - next to her parents. "I love you." She whispered. The crowd roared and chanted 'Natalie, Natalie, Natalie.'
"And finally to the best fans in the entire universe, the Florida Swordfish fans - especially the young female fans who have been so inspiring to me throughout this experience." The crowd roared and roared. Taylor waited.
"Thank you for everything." She laid the mike on second base leaning her champagne glass against it and walked out into left field as the crowd continued screaming and yelling. When she was out where the left-fielder played she put her hand to her heart and bowed to the fans. Then she walked to center field and repeated the gesture then to right field and repeated it again. Then she walked back toward the dugout tears streaming down her face.
Natalie climbed over the seats and ran down the isle to the stairs that led to the dugout. Security smiled at her and let her through. Her tears really began to fall as her eyes met Taylor's. Natalie ran to her love just as the athlete reached the dugout. They hugged long and hard before Taylor was torn away and thrown up on her teammates shoulders.
Natalie smiled through happy tears. They had done it!