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Go To Part 1
Saturday, May 24
I woke up this morning feeling wonderfully sore. Two months is far too long to go without sex. I jumped in the shower and stayed there for a fairly long time before I got out, dried my hair and got dressed in a pair of Bermuda shorts and a tank top. I dropped a book in my bag and headed down to the lobby. Everyone was already there, so we headed out to the train station a couple blocks away.
We grabbed breakfast at one of the gift shops in the station before we boarded our train to Karlsruhe , where we'd switch trains to get to Heidelberg . Heather looked at me with a questioning expression on her face.
“Hey, Ash, who's Chloe?”
“Huh?” I asked, not sure I'd heard her correctly.
“Well, last night I went down to the lobby to get a pop from the vending machine and overheard some of the guys talking about you coming back a little bit earlier with someone named Chloe.”
“Oh, yeah, I went out to a bar last night and she and I hit it off.” I must have had a rather self-satisfied grin on my face as I said this as the other two women chuckled and Aaron looked vaguely uncomfortable with the current topic. “We had a good time, she left, I went to sleep. Not much to tell.”
“Do you plan to see her again?” asked Bridget.
I shrugged. “I don't know. We didn't make any plans. Hell, I didn't even catch her last name. If I go back to the bar, I may see her again, but who knows what'll happen.”
“I think that makes you the first in the program to hook up locally. Congratulations.”
I rolled my eyes. “It's not a big deal. I've just been having a hell of a dry spell. This was the first time I've done anything since Barrister's.”
“That's why I prefer being married,” Aaron said, joining the conversation.
“Been there, done that. I was with the same girl all through college and she dumped me before Thanksgiving. I miss having someone to share my life with, sure, but at the same time it's nice not having to account to anyone about what I do, where I go, etc.”
We got on the train and sat in a section with a table between two rows of facing seats. Aaron had a deck of cards in his camera bag and we ended up playing penny ante poker on the way to Karlsruhe . Heather got a lucky streak and ended up winning a couple euros by the time we got there.
We had a little bit of time to walk around near the train station while waiting for our connection to Heidelberg and ended up wandering over to check out the cost of going to the zoo. We all agreed that it would be fun to come back some other weekend and check it out, so we got the hours and prices before heading back to the train station.
We made it to Heidelberg a little before ten and made it to the city center after about forty minutes of walking. We went into the town hall right off the market square and asked about tours, finding out we were just in time for an English walking tour of the old town. We paid our money and off we went. It was a lot of fun to go around and see all the history in the place as well as the baroque architecture from where the city was rebuilt following the War of the League of Augsburg.
My favorite thing on the tour was probably the Jesuit Church . Everything was so beautiful and bright with gold inlaid everywhere that it was hard not to be taken in by the beauty of it all. A close second was the Student's Prison. It was kind of cool to learn that the University had its own law enforcement and prison discreet from the city itself at one time.
After the tour, we had lunch before walking up to the ruins of the castle to see what all there was. Lunch was great and washed down with a couple of beers. The castle was really impressive despite having been completely destroyed during the War of the League of Augsburg. It was kind of odd that there was also a museum of pharmacology inside the castle, but it had some interesting exhibits highlighting the quackery of previous generations, prescribing arsenic and mercury, deadly metals, for diseases like syphilis.
We stopped at small beer garden and had another round of drinks as well as some amazing apple strudel with ice cream before we made our way back to the train station. We played some more poker on the train back to Strasbourg . I ended up winning fifty cents by the time we pulled into the train station. Heather and Bridget headed back to the hotel from there, while I was able to convince Aaron to come with me to pick up some doner kebab for dinner. That stuff is insanely good. I've never seen it in the states before, but I guess I just need to start looking a lot harder when I get home.
Aaron and I wandered around a little bit longer. We ended up in an argument over Star Trek versus Star Wars. I was Star Trek and he was Star Wars. He made some good points about the ridiculousness and inconsistencies in Trek, like how energy is seemingly unlimited, but then in Voyager they ration the use of the replicators. But he also conceded my point that Lucas had done his best to ruin Star Wars for the fans.
In the end, we agreed to disagree and headed back to the hotel. As we were walking through the lobby, the clerk called out to us.
“Is one of you in room 431?”
“Yeah, that's my room. What's up?”
“A young lady left a message for you this afternoon,” he said, handing me an envelope with ‘Ash – Chambre 431' written on it in a flowing hand. Aaron gave me a funny look and I shrugged, tucking the envelope in my bag.
I told Aaron goodnight and went to my room, opening the envelope. Inside was a letter; I first looked at the signature to see who it was from, pleased to see Chloe's name at the bottom.
I left last night before we exchanged contact information. Here is mine, please feel free to call me anytime. Last night was wonderful.
I opened my computer and sent an email to the address she had given me, telling her that I'd also had a wonderful time and expressing my hopes that we could meet up again. I sent a few more emails to my mom, dad, and brothers before I packed for the next morning's trip to Brussels . With my packing done, I crawled into bed and went to sleep.
Monday, May 26
Yesterday was a hell of a day. I'm still processing what all happened. Right now, I'm in my bed in the hotel, naked, with Steph, also naked, curled up against my side. She's sleeping after we came back to the room after touring the European Council this morning. She was all over me the second we were through the door and we spent the next hour exploring each other's bodies. I should back up a bit.
Yesterday started off too early. We all met up in the lobby before heading over to the train station with our luggage in tow. I still didn't know what was going on with Steph, and I quickly realized that I wouldn't be finding out this morning. She was very standoffish toward me, standing with a few of the other women in the program I didn't know well. She was deliberately avoiding me, as every time I tried to get her attention, she looked right at me, got an odd look, maybe a mixture of confusion and disgust, I don't know, on her face.
I grabbed a seat on the train, popped my headphones in and leaned back to try to get a nap in before we reached Brussels . I had just started to drift off when someone sat down next to me and tapped me on the shoulder. I took out my headphones and looked over, kind of surprised to see Steph sitting there.
“We need to talk,” she said.
“That we do. You never answered my question Friday morning.”
“Huh? Yes what?”
“That's the answer to your question. I've been hitting on you. But then I hear yesterday all about you coming back here Friday night with some blonde French chick, your tits hanging out and bite marks on your neck. Which, just so you know, are still quite obvious. What the hell, Ash?”
“Seriously? You play games with me for a week, don't give me a straight answer, then disappear to go out drinking without making the slightest effort to talk to me? I'm an adult woman capable of making my own decisions. I don't have to answer to you. If you want to be with me, then just say so. I hate the games and the bullshit. Just tell me what you want. Now, if you really must know what happened Friday night, I hadn't had sex since March, so I went out and found someone who wanted to go to bed with me. Not that that's any of your business.”
She looked somewhat taken aback by that. She looked down and took a deep breath. “You're right. I have no claim on you and I don't have the right to be jealous. Do you still want to share a room? Or do you want to see if anyone else wants to swap?”
“If we're being honest,” I said, “I'm attracted to you. I have been since I first saw you last Sunday. That's why I wish you would have just been upfront with me, instead of playing games. I'm not great at picking up on subtleties.”
“Asking your opinion of me in transparent lingerie isn't what I'd call subtle.”
I laughed. “Okay, I'll give you that one. I can be dense sometimes. Tell you what, when we get to Brussels and settled into the hotel, how about you and I go out, see the sites, have dinner and some drinks. Just you and me.”
She smiled at me shyly. “That sounds great. I'd love to.”
She looked like she wanted a hug but was still feeling wary about things, so I leaned over and wrapped my arms around her. Her hands went to my shoulders and she buried her face in my shoulder. We sat there like that for a few minutes, just enjoying being close to each other. Finally, I kissed her on the top of her head and pulled away.
“I'm glad we cleared the air,” I said, smiling.
“Me too. Anything in particular you want to do when we get to Brussels ?”
“Well, I've been looking forward to checking out the Delirium Café. They're supposed to have over 2000 different beers. I know I have no chance of trying them all, but I'm going to do my best to try as many as I can.”
She laughed. “You sure know how to show a girl a good time, don't you?”
“I'm not gonna go overboard, if that's what you're worried about. I just want to make the most of an opportunity I don't know I'll ever have again.”
“That's fair. I just don't want you get hammered on our first date. Anyway, I think I'm gonna take a nap. Mind if I stay here?”
“Not at all.” She leaned her head against my shoulder and I leaned back and soon enough I was asleep and ended up sleeping most of the way through France . At one point, French police came through the train asking for papers, so I had to wake up Steph as we both pulled out our passports.
At that point we were wide awake and decided to move back and join Aaron and Karen, a woman from SMU, in playing some Euchre. It was a good time and staved off boredom until we pulled into the Brussels train station. We filed off the train and started walking to the hotel. Fortunately it was less than a mile away and the weather was beautiful. A few of the guys kept horsing around on the walk, providing a few laughs and a lot of eye rolls for the rest of us.
After an annoyingly long time spent checking it, we finally headed up to our rooms. I was the first to enter and was a bit surprised to see that instead of two full size or queen beds, one on each side of a nightstand as is common in US hotels, Steph and I would be sleeping on a queen and a twin pushed together. That made me kind of nervous. I'd never actually slept that close to anyone except Courtney. None of the other women I slept with stayed the night, so I didn't know how I was going to adjust to being so close to Steph now that we'd both acknowledged our mutual attraction.
I could tell Steph looked nervous about the sleeping arrangement, too, so to try to relieve the tension a bit, I threw my bag down on the twin, the closest mattress to the door.
“You can have the big bed. I don't need a lot of room to sleep.”
“Thanks,” she said, smiling at me as we went about unpacking. I hung my dresses to make sure they didn't have any wrinkles by the next morning and tossed my other clothes into the top drawer of the dresser before taking my toiletry bag to the bathroom. I then flopped back on the bed and took out my computer to get online and check my email. Steph sat on her bed and did the same.
I was surprised to see Chloe had already messaged me back. She was wondering if I wanted to have dinner with her that week. I replied that I may be able to do that after I get back to Strasbourg Wednesday, but I'd have to get back to her on it. It would be nice to have a local to show me around Strasbourg , but with things between me and Steph, I don't know how that will shake out. I guess I'll just have to wait and see.
After I had finished dealing with my email, I closed up my computer and asked Steph is she wanted to head out yet. She said she did, so we went down to the lobby and asked the concierge for directions to a good place for dinner, as well as some museums that we could check out.
We walked to the city center and I was really impressed by the architecture of the buildings lining the central plaza. The first place we went was the Belgian Brewers Museum . I have to say, I wasn't overly impressed by it. It was just a room with a lot of medieval brewing equipment and another room with modern equipment and a movie playing on a loop. Given that I already knew most of the stuff in the movie and Steph wasn't overly interested in it, we went back to the entrance for the included beer. I got the dark and Steph opted for the light. They don't tell you whose beer you're actually drinking, but mine was a very malty double while Steph's was a nice fruity wit.
After that, Steph wanted to check out the Museum of Costume and Lace. I thought I would find it boring, but it was actually really informative. It was cool to learn how lace is actually made as it's something I've never thought about before. And all the historical fashions they had displayed were absolutely gorgeous, though women must have been much tinier back in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
After we were done in there, my stomach was starting to grumble so I suggested dinner. We headed toward the place the concierge had recommended as having the best mussels and fries in a city known for the quality of its mussels and fries. We sat down at an outside table and ordered. We both went with the mussels, fries, and beer combo. It was some of the best food I've ever had in my life. I'd never had mussels before, but I know that this won't be the last time I have them.
We lingered over dinner and there were casual touches exchanged. When we had finished our food and were sipping our beers, we held hands across the table. It was a truly wonderful meal all around. Once we had finished our beers and paid, we stood up to go. We wandered through the town center for awhile, ducking into shops that piqued our interest, watching the crowd pass by, enjoying the smells coming from all the restaurants lining the streets.
After an hour or so, we agreed that our food had settled enough to tackle the huge variety of beers that awaited us at Delirium Café. We got turned around a few times trying to find it before we finally asked directions and got there without any further hassles. The crowd was pretty sparse, so I went up to the bar and grabbed a menu before going back to the table Steph had grabbed for us in the corner. We pored over the menu for a good ten minutes before we finally made our selections for the first round. Steph went with a kriek and I opted for some kind of stout. I can't remember which one.
One round led to another and we ended up really opening up to each other. I told her all about my time with Courtney, how my family felt about my being gay, about my love of video games and science fiction. She told me about her struggles with her family, their conservative values, expectations they heaped on her and the way they pressured her to get married.
After five rounds, both of us trying a different beer each time, and a cheese plate, we decided that it was time to head back to the hotel and sleep it off, especially since we had to be up early the next morning for our visit to the European Commission. Amazingly, despite all our troubles finding Delirium in the first place, we managed to find our way back to the hotel without any problems at all.
We were both more than slightly tipsy and so we were kind of hanging onto each other to keep our balance. I had my arms around Steph's shoulders and hers was wrapped around my waist. There's something to be said for being with someone shorter than you. After walking for ten minutes, it felt like her arm was burning me through my shirt and I was beginning to get aroused from the way her fingers found the edge of my tank top and were tracing patterns on my hip.
We rode the elevator to our floor in silence, casting shy glances at each other. We staggered into our room and the tension between us was as thick as a casebook. Steph took a deep breath before facing me and wrapping her arms around my waist. She lifted her mouth for a kiss and I bent my head down to oblige her. Her lips were sweet and tasted faintly of fruit and hops. She raised her hand to rest it against my cheek, the tips of her fingers delicately rubbing the shell of my ear.
I placed my hands on her hips and held her body gently against mine. It was a contrast from my night with Chloe. Where everything with her was hard and fast and intense, with Steph it was sweet and soft and gentle, not characterized by driving lust, but a slow build that had led inexorably to this moment. Her soft curves fit against my body in such a way that if I believed in a god, I would have sworn she had made Steph and I as a matching set.
My hands moved over her hips and waist, sliding up her sides, coming close to, but never actually touching her full breasts that were pressed underneath my own. She shifted her hand so that her nails began to trace the long, smooth lines of my neck, making me shake with pleasure. I've always been a sucker for a light touch. We ended up on the bed, our caresses and kisses escalating in intensity. She was laying on top of me and pulled me into a sitting position. She grabbed the hem of my tank top and peeled it off me. My nipples were hard and clearly visible through the thin lace of my bra. She took my right nipple in her mouth and sucked it through the lace, the pressure of her tongue pressing against the slightly rough lace driving me crazy.
I unbuttoned her blouse and pushed it off her shoulders, popping the clasp on her bra and pulling it off her. I cupped her breasts as she threw her head back and moaned. I kissed, licked, and bit my way down the length of her throat and over her upper chest before she grabbed the back of my head and pressed it firmly against her breast. I laved and sucked on the large hard nipple, loving the way the tightly wrinkled skin felt against my tongue.
Her heavy breasts felt so incredible in my hands and they were very sensitive, judging be Steph's enthusiastic response to my caresses. I kept moving my mouth from one breast to the other, doing my best to completely cover each breast with misses, making sure to leave no inch of skin untouched.
She placed her hands on my shoulders and pushed me firmly down on the bed. She grabbed the waist of my jeans and unfastened them, pulling them and my panties off, leaving my in just my bra. She kissed my ankle and started moving her way up my legs.
I was so ready for her to touch me that when she pressed her lips against me, I jumped, pressing my center firmly against her mouth. Her tongue and teeth and fingers all sent me into orbit, my body convulsing and my hands pushing Steph's head more firmly against me.
I moved my hands down, freeing up Steph's hands to go where I needed them. “Inside, god Steph, I need you inside me,” I moaned out, gasping as first one, then two fingers easily slid inside, my body welcoming them. I felt her fingers plunge in and out of me, her tongue still relentless on my clit, her left hand moving over my body wherever it could reach.
After what felt to be a blissful eternity but I'm sure was only a couple of minutes, she sucked my clit into her mouth and pinched it between her lips. This was the push I needed to send me tumbling over the edge. The pleasure shot through my body, moving like a spark through a fuse, ending in an explosion that caused every muscle in my body to tense and my mind to go completely blank. The next thing I remembered, I was lying with Steph by my side, placing soft kisses over my face and neck. I was still gasping, trying to catch my breath, but I caught her lips and held them for several long moments.
“Your turn,” I whispered, rolling over so that I was on top of her, my leg between hers. As I kissed my way down, taking time to pay attention to her breasts and pressing my lips all over her rounded belly, I pressed my thigh firmly against her center, smiling through my kisses as she stiffened and thrust her hips against the pressure. I moved down and placed kisses all over the soft smooth skin of her inner thighs, carefully avoiding her pussy for now. I kissed and nipped my way down one leg before switching to the other and moving up.
I ran my fingers through her folds, amazed at how wet she was. I kissed her soft springy curls as I moved my fingers slowly up and down, the smell that wafted up towards me making my mouth water.
“God, Ash, stop fucking teasing me. I need you,” she moaned. I proceeded to keep teasing, but in a more direct manner this time. Every time she would get close to the edge, I would lighten my touch, providing just enough to keep her on edge, but not enough to give her the release she was so desperately craving. Her fingers tangled in my hair and her thighs closed around my head. After long minutes of this exquisite torture, her gasps and moans coming out in weak, rapid breaths, I pressed my mouth hard against her and plunged inside her with two fingers. Her reaction was instantaneous. Her back flew off the bed and she screamed out my name. I kept stroking her with my tongue and fingers until she fell back, panting for air, her body coated in a glistening layer of sweat.
“My god, Ash,” she gasped, “that was...words don't…Jesus.”
I moved up her body, placing gentle kisses in a straight line up over her belly button, her sternum, her throat and chin, finally capturing her lips in an achingly sweet kiss. I rolled onto my back and held out my arm. She laid her head down on my shoulder and drifted off to sleep. I watched her sleeping for a few moments before I joined her.
We ended up oversleeping this morning and almost missed the visit to the Council, but fortunately, Bridget beat on the door until we woke up with only fifteen minutes in which to get ready. We quickly showered together before dressing and rushing downstairs. We didn't talk about what happened last night, but before we stepped out of the room, Steph wrapped her arms around my waist and kissed me, saying that we would talk later.
The visit to the Council was pretty boring to be honest. Karen hijacked the Q and A period by continually asking whether we could work for the Council, even though she had been told last week at Parliament that jobs in EU government were only for EU citizens. I don't know why she expected a different answer today, but she asked anyway. The man speaking to us was very polite about it though and said that it was quite possible for us to become EU citizens as long as we had a grandparent who was an Irish citizen. But since none of us claimed to be so recently descended from an Irish citizen it didn't really mean anything for us.
After that we all went our separate ways, some of the group wanting to visit Bruges , some to do some sightseeing in Brussels , and Jason's clique decided to catch a train to Amsterdam as we didn't have to meet up again until tomorrow around three. Steph and I decided to come back to the room, ostensibly to change before heading out to do something. Instead, we made love again until we were both completely exhausted. We napped for a little bit together and when I woke up, Steph was still sleeping and didn't stir. I don't know what we'll do the rest of the day, but I can't wait to find out.
Thursday, May 29
Well, we got back to Strasbourg yesterday evening and I've just been relaxing. Things with Steph are going great and we've decided that we want to keep things casual and going the fuck buddies route. It makes the most sense as we go to different schools and we'd be apart when we got home anyway, but neither of us saw a point in missing out on some amazing sex while we had the chance for it. By the same token, I plan to keep hanging out with Chloe. She's a fun girl and our emails back and forth have been really great.
In fact, later this evening, Chloe and I are going out to dinner and she's going to show me some of her favorite local spots, away from the touristy areas. I'm looking forward to it, and to possible a little bit more tonight. This is quite odd for me. I had only been with Courtney for four years. She was my first and until we broke up, the only woman I'd been with. I had a couple hook ups before I left for Europe , but until last week, I'd had nothing for months. Now in the space of a week, I've got a friends with benefits thing going on with one woman and the possibility for something similar with another. It's like feast or famine for me and it's kind of odd trying to adjust to my newfound bounty of sex.
Anyway, I guess I should say something about the rest of the time in Brussels . It was a lot of fun. Steph and I went back to Delirium and had another big night. I even ended up buying an aged bottle of strong ale that I plan to open after I graduate. I can't wait to see what it tastes like in two years. We went to the grounds from Brussels ' World's Fair and went up inside the Atomium which had a great view of the city, though it was a hazy sort of day so it wasn't as clear as it could have been.
The Commission wasn't all that interesting. Karen asked her employment question again, which elicited a groan from the rest of us. She already knows the answer, why does she keep asking? At NATO we had to rush out in order to make our train and Karen didn't get a chance to ask, though I'm sure the answer would have been different there, given the US 's role in NATO.
And yes, Steph and I did spend a hell of a lot of time in bed. It was fun and pressure free and stress free. We laughed and joked around while screwing each others' brains out. It was an ideal time in the bedroom. I'm glad I brought as many dams with me as I did, but I'm gonna need to find a way to load back up because if we keep up the pace here in Strasbourg, I'll be out within a week.
We got back to Strasbourg late on Wednesday, so I ordered a pizza for dinner and went to bed early. We didn't have any classes today, so I slept in and did some grocery shopping. I got stuff to make a nice fettuccine alfredo, so I'll probably have that sometime this weekend. See if Steph wants to join me. I also got a rabbit, because why not. They sell rabbits in the butcher's case here. I figure I can use it to make a stew with some potatoes, carrots, onion, garlic and wine. Should be a tasty experiment as apart from one time my dad took me camping and killed a rabbit for dinner, I'd never had it before.
It's about time for me to get ready for my evening with Chloe. I hope it goes well. On initial impressions it's odd that I'm seeing both her and Steph. They couldn't be more different if they tried. Steph is very bubbly and outgoing, always trying to make friends with people in the group and moving from clique to clique. She's also shorter and very pleasantly plump, with brunette hair and light brown eye.
Chloe on the other hand is aloof and seemed to be almost arrogant in the short time I was with her in the bar. Physically, while she also has brown eyes, her hair is died a platinum blonde and her body is almost painfully thin. I was fully able to see her ribs and even her spine the night we spent together. In spite of that, her arms and legs showed a wiry kind of muscularity. When she grabbed me and pulled my body to hers, there was a surprising amount of strength behind her embrace.
All this contemplation of women's bodies serves to remind me that I haven't done any dedicated exercise apart from walking everywhere I go since I got to Europe. I'm going to go out for a run before I meet Chloe tonight.
Continued in part 4.
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