I’ve had my fair share of kisses during my lifetime and
some might say I’ve been blessed; others might say cursed.
Either way, never in all those kisses have I felt that
complete; that… whole… than after that one kiss.
For the first time in our bizarre, mixed-up lives – lives
filled with kids in prison or crazy ex-husbands – well…
everything fit… Everything fell into place…Everything
was breathtakingly beautiful.
And why not… the woman I love is smart, and funny, and
stunning and…despite fleeting moments of insecurity she
knows how special she is. It just takes someone to remind her
and challenge her now and then, giving her that extra push…
something I’m very good at by the way.
And I do love a challenge, even though I’ll never admit
it. Really, I love the fight. I love the tenor in her
voice and the fire that envelops her eyes when her passion
strikes her – even when she’s going a few rounds with me.
Plus, when she’s made a decision, she’s a force to be
reckoned with to be sure.
But there are other moments - softer moments - that I love
just as powerfully.
The way she walks by me with reserved confidence. The way
she teases me with a simple glance. The way she looks at me
like I hung the moon and the stars. The way she brushes
against my body while we’re in a meeting.
That’s one of my favorites.
Everyone else in the room is oblivious to it, but I know
what it means… She wants to take me before the day is over…and
by any God you name… she will.
I’ve never known desire like this…ever. I’ve never
wanted to be taken like this. I’ve never wanted to possess
anyone, or anything, as much as I want to possess her.
I think that’s why when the first time happened…that
one kiss…as much I wanted to devour her I…I couldn’t. I
realized in the instant that our lips met… I didn’t want
to devour her at all. I wanted to savor her.
I wanted it all seared on my memory so it would last
forever... and it did. The softness of her lips against mine;
her smooth cheeks under my fingertips and the right dimple
that’s to die for.
She melted my soul.
And as our friend Father Ray might say that makes sense
because of where she and I are headed someday. We can’t
escape the heat and fire and brimstone he’d say. The truth
is he doesn’t know that for sure… But there is one thing I
God is love…
Or at least that’s what I’ve been told. And I know what
I feel for her – this heat, this fire, this love, this
devotion…There’s nothing wrong about it… And yes, I
thank God that she feels the same way.
And what I have now is what so many people strive for –
true love. I thought I found it at different moments in my
life, but the truth is… never - not once - did I possess it.
What I have, right here; right now…
This is genuine love…
And every time before? That was just child’s play
preparing me for this moment; this life I have with her.
But like I was saying… that one kiss… Well, it was
magic. Pure magic, and yes, I know, everyone who’s in love
says their first kiss was special, but…
You see she’s a tease, she’s a vixen, she’s brought
men to their knees and…she always finds little ways to amaze
me and surprise me and…I know life with her will never get
boring because it never has.
I’d wanted to kiss her for so long, but slow and steady
made sense to me. After awhile though… let’s just say ‘want’
and ‘desire’ were beginning to win out over ‘slow’ and
‘steady’ each night.
On this night though, after one of our ‘dates,’ I
thought ‘enough’… and it’s odd now, looking back. I
mean dating a woman that you already know you want to spend
the rest of your life with and, well, someone you’ve already
In the end though, it made perfect sense. So what if we did
it all backward? Who cares? We always said it wasn’t anyone’s
business – even before we declared our love for each other.
Besides this woman had experienced so many trials, and grew
up so quickly, that she never had a real courtship in her
entire life…Looking back… the ‘courting’ was really a
gift we gave each other since life and fate forced us to
become adults practically overnight.
Anyway, during one date in particular I closed the distance
between us a little more than usual. Neither of us had made a
serious move or tried to lock lips in all these dates we’d
had. But tonight I decided I’d test the waters and make my
So I asked her politely, and with much sincerity, "May
I kiss you?" I’m sure she could hear the desire and
need in my voice.
And her reaction?
As a matter of fact, I don’t think I’ve ever seen her
look more jovial than at that moment, which is saying quite a
bit with all she’d gone through that year and everything she
had to overcome. But still, she played it cool and nodded
slowly. I think she was just as nervous as I was since she
didn’t even speak.
So playing the vixen card, which I play well myself, I didn’t
head for her lips. Oh, no. Instead, I took her hand in mine,
allowing our fingers to intertwine and tangle for a moment.
Then I placed a delicate kiss on the top of her middle
knuckle. I figured I’d impress her by being gallant. My lips
closed around the protruding bone and my tongue, ever so
gently, tasted the salty skin for only a second at the most.
I heard her breath catch in her throat so my lips released
her before going back for a second time, snaring the knuckle
again. I raised my eyes to look at her reaction and when her
eyes met mine there was no mistaking what I saw there…
Pure and utter lust…
I could see her lips part slightly; her breathing becoming
labored; her legs starting to tremble. But rather than give in
to those desires I decided to gently release her hand and
instead I asked coyly, "See you tomorrow then?"
She’d reached her breaking point.
Olivia’s purse fell to the farmhouse porch and she
captured my face between her palms. Her touch was electric and
the current between us unstoppable.
The force of her kiss and the impact of our bodies reminded
me of a day months before and a kiss brought on by frustration
more than desire.
She’d mentioned later that the kiss was frustrating on
many levels. For one there was frustration with me for not
seeing that Emma’s class thought we were lovers, but there
was also frustration at herself - for not understanding how
she really felt about me, for wondering who she was, what she
was becoming and where our lives were heading.
Even on the day she truly kissed me for the first time I
can’t say I had any of those things completely figured out
either. Was I gay? Was I bi? I didn’t know. All I knew was I
loved this emerald-eyed beauty - one that swears to this day
that I gave her a heart but then, over time, stole it back.
That was enough for me. And thankfully, enough for her too.
And as she kissed me that evening I felt her desire – and
that instant warmth that comes with it – and the glow that
encircles you, surrounds you. The difference was… this time,
rather than basking in the heat as she’d done with so many
men… I could tell…she was scared.
I, Natalia Rivera, with all 130 pounds of me, scared the
hell out of mogul Olivia Spencer.
It had nothing to do with the fact I was a woman. We both
understood that immediately. That fear came because she knew,
like I did – in that one kiss – she had never, in all her
years, loved anyone as much as she loved me… and she never
I’d be her first; I’d be her last; I’d be her always…
and on more levels than just physically. And she was mine,
totally and unreservedly.
But it wasn’t until I pulled back to catch my breathe
that I saw that look of panic in Olivia’s eyes. And rather
than become alarmed by it, I knew what I had to do. I had to
hush her, calm her.
I pulled her head down to my shoulder, attempting to sooth
her; love her.
Olivia swears to this day she can still remember the smell
of my shampoo – strawberries – and how warm and safe she
felt within those dark strains caressing her face; letting her
hide away from the world, if only for a moment. Those curls
moved just as gently as my fingers were doing across her back,
coaxing her… at least that’s what she says.
"I feel it too," I told her softly that night.
"No, I don’t think so," she managed to reply on
the verge of tears. "This, what I feel now is a first.
You’ve…you’ve found true love before."
"Not like this," I replied firmly. I pulled back
and she saw the sincerity in my eyes. At that moment I
witnessed the wall she was trying to build around her begin to
collapse, so I didn’t waste a moment. The look of concern I
wore began to transform into one of passion again.
"I’ll prove it," I told her with the
determination Olivia loathes at time and adores at others.
And prove it that night I did… and many nights after…and
many mornings…many afternoons…in the barn... in the
laundry room… even the kitchen table…In fact, we’ve only
got three more rooms left at The Beacon until we can say we’ve
been in all of them...
Anyway, Olivia swears she never thought I’d find another
woman as insatiable as her, but low and behold, and much to
her luck and fortune, she did…and we’re both reaping the
But that first kiss…that one kiss… well…let’s say
it was worth the wait because it changed our lives for the