“Do one thing every day that scares you,” I said out loud.
“What are you looking at?” my boyfriend asked.
“This fortune I got at lunch.”
“You kept it? You never keep your fortunes.”
“I kept this one.” I handed the tiny slip of white paper to Bradley. Then I watched as he read the words and cracked a smile. “You got the wrong cookie, Sal.”
That’s what I’d been thinking. I never did anything that scared me. Forget being afraid, I never even did anything out of my standard routine. Each day, I wore the same type of outfit to work. Each lunch, my coworkers and I went to one of the same three restaurants where I’d order one of the same two items.
Bradley, on the other hand, took risks all the time. I often wondered why he would choose to be with someone as bland as I am. But Bradley always says he doesn’t see me as “bland,” he sees me as “classic.” Some women have a signature scent, one special lipstick, or a certain style of dress. “That doesn’t make them dull” he explained to me whenever I had a moment of worry “it puts them in the same category as Audrey Hepburn or Jackie O., and nobody would ever consider them boring.”
Who knows why, but for some reason, that little piece of paper made me doubt myself.
“What about if I wore a red shirt to work?” My office outfits are all navy, black, white or chocolate. Bright hues don’t fit in with my office’s serious environment.
“I don’t think that counts.”
“I never wear red,” I continued. “Red would be different.”
Bradley gave me an incredulous stare I guess he remembered I don’t even own a red shirt. “The fortune said, ‘Do one thing each day that scares you.’ Not ‘Make an alteration to your standard attire.’”
“What if I rode the bus instead of driving to work?” I proposed.
Bradley laughed. “Would that really scare you?”
“Maybe. I might miss my stop.”
I started to pace in our living room, from one end to the other. As I moved, I noticed the uniformity of the decor, as if I were seeing the apartment for the first time: gray carpet, navy sofa with white piping, sleek silver framed photos on the mantle. The only unusual items in the room were the photos themselves Bradley hang gliding, Bradley standing next to a fish nearly as big as himself, Bradley showing off his latest vibrantly colored tattoo.
Bradley watched me pacing. He seemed to find the whole situation vastly amusing. That’s when I decided I really would take the fortune seriously. I was going to do one thing that scared me. And that thing was . . .
“Sally, what are you doing?”
I’d begun to unbutton my crisp, white shirt. I hadn’t stopped walking, but now I’d started undressing. See, I’d landed my focus on the balcony outside our living room. Not much of a balcony, honestly. A little strip of sunshine surrounded by a concrete railing. We had a small grill in the corner, a tiny table and chair set on the other end. There was just enough space to spread out a towel and catch a few rays if the sun was in the right spot.
At this moment, the sun was perfect.
“No, really, Sal. What the hell are you doing?”
I’d taken my shirt all the way off, and I worked down the side zipper of my formfitting pencil skirt. Something about unzipping the skirt while Bradley watched gave me a full body shiver delicious and unexpected.
“What if I wear a black bra with gray panties tomorrow?” I asked as I stepped out of the skirt. There was an unusual tease in my voice.
His eyes were huge as I stood before him in my stack heeled pumps, opaque stockings, garter belt, and bra and panty set all matching, of course.
“I don’t think you’d make it through the day. You’d feel all wrong.”
“Well, then, what if I take off the rest of my clothes and walk out on the balcony.”
I could tell from the look on his face that he honestly didn’t think I’d do it. Although he did appear suitably impressed that I’d tossed out the suggestion. But even though I was down to my foundation garments, he clearly thought I’d chicken out, like the time I was all set to go snorkeling but failed when the moment came. Of course, this event didn’t involve me diving off the side of a boat. I popped the clasp on my bra and let the pearly silk fall free. My lace trimmed panties were next. Then I stepped out of my shoes and took off the stockings and my garter belt.
“I was kidding,” Bradley said. Finally, he seemed shocked by my behavior. His attitude sent a jolt of pleasure through me. For once, I was the one doing something crazy. I was the one who had come up with the unexpected plan.
“I’m not,” I said, and I pushed open our sliding door and stepped out into the sun. I heard Bradley gasp behind me.
“People can see you!”
“Do you think?”
“No, I mean, I know they can see you, all of you, naked you!”
I took a deep breath and let the sensation of being exposed wash over me. I was surprised to realize how much I enjoyed the feeling. Was this why Bradley liked to hang glide and cliff dive and bungee jump? Did he have the same flutters deep in the pit of his belly when he first approached a new adventure? Because let me tell you, my whole body was awash in tingles in a way I’ve never experienced before. I felt more than undressed. I felt as if I had transformed.
I looked over my shoulder.
Bradley appeared transformed as well. Usually, he brims over with confidence. He never has a moment of insecurity, as far as I can tell. I turned to face him. This was a unique sensation, because I could see the outline of my reflection on the glass door, and I could see Bradley staring at me on the other side. While we stared at each other, I started to run my hands over my body. I cupped my small breasts, then caressed the curve of my hips, then ever so slowly reached down between my legs.
Do one thing each day that scares you.
In a flash, I realized I wasn’t scared anymore. I was aroused. That’s the understatement of the century. I was in heat. My fingertips were dripping from the first plunge between my nether lips, and I closed my eyes and let those knowing digits start to take me where I needed to go.
Were people watching me play with myself? Maybe. But more likely than not, our neighbors were going about their own business. When have I ever taken the time to peer over and see what our nearest neighbors were doing? That was easy enough to answer: Never. It hadn’t occurred to me that someone might be on display like this. Besides, the way the balconies of our building are set, we’re not actually right next to another balcony. There is a large space between the two.
But what if someone really was watching? Like from one of the office buildings across the way with a pair of binoculars. Did the thought bother me? If I was to be honest with myself and I felt that this was a position for complete, naked honesty I’d have to say no. Not only wasn’t I disturbed by the idea, I was intensely excited. I continued to press and dip my fingers into my pussy, alternating with sweet circles of varying pressure around and around my clit. What truly mattered wasn’t whether or not strangers were watching me, but whether or not Bradley was. And I knew the answer to that as well. I peeked to confirm that he was.
Definitely, hungrily, excitedly.
I shut my eyes again and began to stroke myself more fiercely. I used one hand to play with my nipples, pinching the left, pinching the right, and the other hand to touch my pussy. There was something about feeling the sun on my naked skin that made me even more excited. In my whole life, I’d never been outside naked. No skinny dipping for me. No nude sunbathing. This was by far the sexiest thing I’d ever done. And I was doing it by myself.
Well, that’s not entirely true.
When I slit my lids and looked through the glass, I saw that not only was Bradley watching, he was in motion. But I could see from his face that he appeared completely confused. Should he drag me back into the apartment and put clothes on me? Should he tell me I was out of my mind? Should he . . . oh, look at that! While I watched, he pulled his t shirt over his head and kicked off his shoes. His jeans came next, then his boxers. Suddenly, we were both equally naked, and as I looked down at Bradley’s erection I saw that we were equally aroused.
I touched myself.
Bradley touched himself.
I felt an electric current working through my body. I can’t tell you whether or not Bradley felt the same sort of shiver working through his body, but I can say that he looked incredibly thrilled. Most likely, nobody was looking at me. If our closest neighbors came out onto their balconies, they’d have gotten a good look but ours is the last building on the hillside. We’re situated right up from Sunset Boulevard with a view that goes on seemingly forever. There is no matching apartment building across the street. There is only the city twinkling and glittering below.
If someone was able to look from a vantage point in an office building, well, I don’t think anyone would be able to see much more than my naked back, my hair hanging down. Still, I felt so free being out there on the balcony, stroking myself while Bradley mirrored my actions.
Clearly, he was turned on by my adventurous side. But then I realized something else. I’d never masturbated in front of Bradley before. Sure, I touched myself from time to time. Usually, in the shower in the morning after he’d left for work. Or sometimes late at night, when he was asleep in bed next to me. It had always seemed like a private thing to do. I assumed Bradley jerked off, too, but we’d never discussed the fact.
I found watching him as exciting as performing for him. Then suddenly I saw a look on his face I recognized from when he’s fucking me. He was close. Really close. I moved my fingers faster to catch up. A spin and a twist. A probe and a tickle. Yes, my hand was working those familiar magic tricks that always make me come. But I have to confess something else. I thought I might have been able to come simply from being naked out there on the balcony, with Bradley stroking himself for me.
Oh, this was good. I could not remember the last time I had been this aroused. Yes, Bradley and I have a sexy sex life, as redundant as that may sound. But all of it has occurred inside in our bedroom, or bathroom, or, once, the living room. For us this was like riding down the diamond lane at Bradley’s favorite ski resort. (And, yes, I am still on the bunny trail.)
My fingertips began to move even faster, pressing my clit, nearly swimming in my juices. Did I usually get this wet when we made love? I didn’t think so. I was surprised by the sheer amount of honey that coated my nether lips and the insides of my thighs.
Bradley watched me intensely, and I think this is what extended the pleasure for me. He watched me as if I were on display at a sex museum an exhibit for his personal pleasure. Why had I never realized that being watched was such a turn on? Maybe because for the better part of our relationship, I have spent my time watching Bradley. I’ve watched him perform extreme sports. I’ve watched from the sidelines when he’s jumped and sped and hang glided and dived.
Now he was the one watching me.
With the sun on me, and the air, and the city surrounding us, I did something I never had before. I came in front of him without his fingers on me at all. I didn’t make a sound, but Bradley did. The glass door was open a crack, and I heard him groan, saw his head go back, watched in awe as he came on the glass.
If I were an exhibit in a museum, I thought, they’d have a special person who would have to go around and clean up after the men. For some reason, that vision made me smile.
Then I saw Bradley’s mouth move.
What was he saying?
I got closer to the glass. He slid the door the rest of the way open.
“I need you.”
I took my time. I said good bye to the balcony with my body, shimmying my hips as I walked back into the apartment. Bradley didn’t seem able to wait. He grabbed my wrist and pulled me to him. “What’s got into you, Sally?”
“I mean, what gave you the balls to go do that?”
I shrugged. I didn’t know. Maybe I was simply tired of being buttoned up. Was Bradley upset? He hadn’t seemed disturbed when he and I were touching ourselves moments before. Had he come to a different emotion now that he’d, well, come?
“I want to see more.”
I grinned. And yet, I didn’t know what he could mean. I had just performed a one woman show for him. What was he asking for? An encore?
“You’re so fucking sexy, Sally. I want you to do that again.”
He’d never talked to me like that before, and not in that gruff way, either. I could feel heat pulse between my legs.
“The bedroom, baby. I want this to be a private show.”
I was so excited that I could hardly walk in a straight line. But then I had an idea. Why should I have all the fun performing on the balcony? Bradley should experience the thrill that I’d just felt. I spun on my heel and headed back toward the patio.
“Where are you going?”
“It’s not where I’m going. It’s where we’re going.”
“You scared?” I taunted.
I looked down at him. My words had made his dick hard again, much sooner than I’d expected.
“What do you think?” he asked.
“I think you are.”
“Oh, girl, you have no idea.”
He took charge then, which thrilled me. He grabbed me and brought me back out into my sunbeam. From here, we could have any number of people as our audience. But I only cared about one person Bradley and right then, I only cared about one part of him: the rock hard member between his legs. But I wasn’t done performing. I sat back on one of our lounge chairs and spread my legs. Had I always wanted to show him this? Had I, in some dark secret part of myself, thought that masturbating in front of him would be a good idea? Maybe, because I went right to work.
“Watch me,” I said, and my voice was the gruff one now. Deep and somehow mysterious. “You stay right there,” I motioned to the balcony wall, “and you watch me.”
Bradley did exactly as I told him to. Good boy. The power between us was bouncing first I had it, then he had it. I loved the play. With his eyes on me, I began to stroke my shaved pussy. I was still incredibly wet from my outdoor adventure, and I made sure that Bradley could see exactly how glistening I was. I used one hand to spread my nether lips, and the fingers of my other hand to tweak and tease my clit. Bradley moved forward, almost as if he was going to push my hands out of the way, but I stopped him.
“You get to look,” I said. “But you don’t get to touch. Not until I say so. And if you disobey me, I’m going to put you back in the living room and make sure there’s a wall of glass between us.”
That was enough for Bradley.
“You think so?” he snarled. “You think you’re going to do that to me?”
I felt the pounding of my heart in every part of my body.
“This is what I think is going to happen.” He grabbed me then and turned me so that I was facing our gold drenched city in all of its splendor. “I think you’re going to stare out there, and imagine people watching you get fucked.”
I swallowed hard.
“And I think that thought is going to turn you on. Because deep down inside, you’ve always wanted people to see you. To see the real you. To know what a dirty girl you are.”
God, where was this coming from?
“Aren’t I right, Sally?”
“Whose dirty girl are you?” As he asked the question, he slammed his dick inside me.
“And if I wanted to take you out sometime, to a club in the city, and fuck you where people could really watch, you’d cream for me, wouldn’t you?”
Each word he said ratcheted my excitement up another level. I’d never been this turned on before.
He stopped fucking me.
He ran one hand along the front of my body. His fingers took their time getting to my clit, and I was humming under my breath when he finally crested his thumb over that hot ball of pleasure.
“Oh, God,” I whispered under my breath as I savored the sensations.
Bradley stopped talking. He kept his fingertips running over my clit, and his cock thrusting and slamming inside me. And yes, his body was turning me on, as it always does. But we both knew that the real turn on was being outside, being on display, being exposed.
“You’d love it if people were watching, wouldn’t you? All day long, you keep yourself buttoned up, but really, you’re this little sex animal who needs to be let out of her cage.”
Was I? I had never thought so. As he said the words, I realized he was telling me the truth. I’d always wanted to take a step out of my confined environment. Why hadn’t I known that before?
“I want to see you totally undone.”
He gripped my hair as he hissed out this last line, and I felt my knees buckle. Bradley pushed me harder against the balcony. I could tell he was moments away from coming. Without another word, he drove in the deepest yet. The world was moving forward around us those cars way down there on Sunset Boulevard, the people going about their daily lives, buying books at Book Soup, reading about the latest bands coming to the Viper Room and then there was us. We were acting as if we were all alone in our own universe, naked and fucking in the gold drenched light.
“I’m almost . . . ” I whispered.
“Yeah, baby? Then come for me. Come now. Right here. Outside.”
I didn’t shut my eyes. I didn’t close out the world. I came. With everyone watching or nobody watching. With Bradley watching, and that’s all that mattered. He came as I did, groaning and bucking, his cock so hard and powerful inside me, his mouth against my ear, whispering, “God, you turn me on. I never thought you’d do something like this.”
That’s what it was all about, wasn’t it?
We came together out there on the balcony two becoming one.
Do one thing each day that scares you.
I wonder what we’ll do tomorrow.