Thursday, May 22, 2014

Prompt: Boating on the Seine

Thanks to the Metropolitan Museum Initiative
for over 400,000 new image prompts,
including Édouard Manet’s lovely “Boating”!

Rodolphe lay on the picnic blankets with his straw hat covering his eyes. After the near-endless feast, everyone had wandered off, but all he wanted was to sleep. Well, all he wanted that he could have was sleep.

Mary had gone with young Sebastian to look for truffles and flowers. Rodolphe wished she had stayed. He would have continued to feed her strawberries and grapes one by one, his fingers hovering over her lips, brushing the sweet fruit against her skin until she smiled and laughed and plucked it away.

Shifting his trousers, he looked up and around, then let his head fall heavy against the warm blanket, the drone of bees lulling him to sleep. He heard the swish of full skirts, but remained unmoving. Her scent, vanilla on her own musky skin, swept over him as she dropped in a heap beside him and arranged her long slender legs and blue skirts more decorously.

“Are you sleeping?” she asked with the British lilt he found so charming. Her hand brushed over his white shirt sleeve, her fingers trailing across the band and down his bicep, over his elbow, and along his forearm. Every hair on his arm stretched toward her touch.

Without moving, he murmured, “Not now, mam’selle. Did you find treasure in the dirt?”

“Oh yes. Sebastian knows the woods so well. We will have another feast tomorrow, if Father brings down a nice fat deer or boar.”

She snatched her fingers away, and he opened his eyes. She was looking over the sparkling water, blushing. His lips twitched. “Would you like to go out?” he asked, waving a hand toward the river.

“Oh, I would. I love the water. I miss Avon. It’s secluded enough that we can swim…” Her voice faded to a whisper, and her flushed cheeks darkened.

He chuckled. “Well, we can’t swim here, but I can take you out on the water and you can at least dip your hands in.”

Climbing easily to his feet, he held out his hands. When she took them, he pulled her up and tugged her slightly off balance, so she fell against him. He moved his hands to her waist to steady her, then slid his right hand to the small of her back to direct her toward the boats. She didn’t pull away.

Rodolphe pushed the dinghy into the water, then handed Mary in and helped her settle on the bench. He didn’t mind the cold water on his pants legs as he took a couple of steps away from the bank before smoothly climbing in behind her. Picking up the paddle, he soon had them drifting in the current, keeping a slow steady course toward the Shallows.

Mary leaned against the gun’al, arranging her hat’s netting over her face and hair. Rodolphe hoped she would remove it when they reached the calm Shallows. Her legs stretched across to the opposite side, and he stretched out his right foot to tuck against hers. She smiled, but did not look at him, keeping her eyes on the water. He slid his foot up her leg, and she shivered, but did not move away…

Dogs in House

John Legend, “All of Me”

Time writing
~30 minutes

May word count

1 comment:

  1. Writing report:
    Novel editing, new text Ch13a

    Time: ~40min