This is a different story than I typically write. It is about a young woman, confused about and struggling with her sexual identity as she falls for a female coworker and begins freeing herself from a heteronormative upbringing. It was inspired by my brave friend, K, to whom I am grateful for opening up to me, and for giving me her blessing to write a story based on her experiences. As such, it doesn’t jump right into anything naughty… but surely winds up there before long. Enjoy!
I work at a large ad agency in midtown Manhattan. I spend all day crunching numbers and analyzing charts. When people asked what I do, I’d say “analytics” and they would stare at me, nodding, before changing the subject. Yeah, I’m a nerd, but numbers give me comfort. Everything is precise. There’s only one, single correct answer to anything. I don’t like surprises.
Ironically my desk is closest to the design team. Do I wish I could spend all day milling about, laughing, cracking jokes, and drawing doodles? Sure. But I’m not creative, don’t know any jokes, and couldn’t draw to save my life. Still, I often watched Nicole, one of the designers, and would think, “if I could choose any person in the world to be, it would be her.”
Nicole had a shiny stud in her nose, wore skinny black jeans, a faded Smiths t-shirt, and laughed all the time. I wore flannel shirts, faded thrift store jeans, and didn’t have anyone to talk to. I wished I were cooler, I wished Nicole thought I was cool, but alas, that was my life.
It was Friday, and nearing the end of the day. I needed a cup of tea and popped into the office kitchen. Usually someone was there making coffee or rummaging through stale cookies left there weeks before. They’d glance up at me, smile, but say nothing, and then wander out.
Alas, there was Nicole, with the fridge wide open, bent over and searching the bottom shelf for something. There was her firm, tight ass right in my face. Why couldn’t I have an ass like that? She probably didn’t work half as hard on hers as I did on mine. I started making my tea and she must have heard.
“Oh- hey Jessamyn!” she exclaimed, standing back up.
“Hi Nicole,” I said, smiling.
“What’s up, babe?” she asked, “Got any fun plans for the long weekend?”
“Nope,” I said, “I might just go read in Prospect Park, I dunno, the weather’s supposed to be nice.”
“It’s supposed to be beautiful. You know what sucks?” she asked.
“I was going to go camping on Bear Mountain with a friend and she just canceled on me. Fuuuck! I was totally excited to get out of the city.”
“Oh wow, yeah that sucks… What are you gonna do now?”
“I mean… I might still go anyway. I already bought a bunch of new camping shit.”
I started bobbing my tea bag in my cup, observing her as she talked. Nicole was really beautiful, though she downplayed it. She was tall, with long dark hair, bright, round eyes, full lips, and an impish grin that was impossibly cute. Lord of the Rings elven princess cute. She was way more confident and outgoing than I even knew how to be.
“… do you want to join me?” she asked. I felt maybe she was pressured to ask, because I had fallen silent. Maybe she thought I was expecting to be invited.
“Oh, no, you don’t have to invite me,” I said.
She laughed. “Of course I don’t, but I just did. Have you ever been camping?”
“No, I’m afraid of bears and would probably come home swollen from bug bites.”
She rolled her eyes. “Just because it’s called Bear Mountain doesn’t mean you’re going to be attacked by bears. Plus, it’s like, an hour from Manhattan. If you get mauled by ants I can carry you home in a stretcher pretty quickly.”
I laughed, surprising myself, but her upbeat attitude had some magical way of rubbing off on me. “I dunno…” I replied.
“Well, when you realize later how much fun it sounds, let me know!” she said, strolling out of the room with a few cookies in her palm.
I leaned against the counter and sipped my tea, slipping into a daydream. I imagined Nicole and I out in the wilderness, roughing it, sharing secrets and laughing, maybe even skinny dipping in a lake together. Then I suddenly realized- Nicole was a lesbian, and I was not. What would happen if we slept together in a small tent? Would she come onto me? I felt something, but I assumed it was panic and discomfort.
When I got back to my seat, I wasn’t quite able to focus. I couldn’t get the daydream out of my head. Flow charts looked like trail maps to me. I didn’t even like camping- at least, I assumed I didn’t, I’d never done it. What would I eat? How would I bathe? Did they have… facilities of some kind? I didn’t know the first thing about spending time in the wilderness, but at the same time, I felt inclined to trust Nicole more than I would usually trust another person.
The day ended and the mass exodus began. I crowded into the elevator. Someone jabbed me in the boob. Nicole scrambled to squeeze in at the last minute. She gave me a smile afyon escort through the crowd of people. “Think about it!” she exclaimed, drawing strange looks from our coworkers.
We exited. The revolving door began spinning, and a flood of people were released onto Third Ave. I silently wandered toward the subway, tense with the possibility of doing something new and daunting.
When I reached Brooklyn, I grabbed a donut on the corner, raced up the stairs to my apartment, fed my cat, Geoffrey, and collapsed on the couch. I set my phone beside me, and glared at it.
“You probably wouldn’t even work out there. If there was an emergency – no reception. No way to call for help,” I growled.
I did my best to try to find reasons like this not to email Nicole, but nothing seemed satisfactory.
Hours passed like this. Despite all my efforts, the simple guilt of leaving Nicole hanging without a reply is all that it took to get me to finally respond to her. I started a text message, and intended to write “Sorry, I can’t go camping this weekend” but instead I somehow wrote “Okay, I’ll give it a try.” I cursed myself for pressing send. Even Geoffrey looked at me like I was an idiot; though, admittedly, he always did that.
“Great, I can’t wait!!” was the reply I got. Well, that made one of us.
That night I had a dream in anticipation of our trip. It was dark, late, the crickets were chirping. There was a tent. The soft glow of a flashlight came from within. Nicole and I were inside. Though it wasn’t the inside of a tent, more like a luxury hotel room. I was wearing my favorite fuzzy pajamas. Nicole was laughing her amazing laugh.
But then it took a twist. She wrapped her arms around me. We hugged. I felt a surge of warmth and comfort. She kissed me. First on the cheek and then on the lips. We fell back together onto an array of embroidered silk pillows. Her elven lips pressed to mine, her soft body moving against my skin.
I woke up with a start. Did I just have a sexual dream about another girl?
I grew nervous and tried to block the thought, but as soon as I got it to go away and was able to relax, I found myself drifting back to it. Worse, I could feel myself becoming wet. This wasn’t supposed to happen. She was the lesbian, not me. I forced myself to dwell on a recurring fantasy I sometimes had.
In my fantasy, I was working out at a gym, sweaty and exhausted. I wandered into an empty locker room and stripped off my clothes, desperate to get into a cool shower. I stood there, letting the water rain down over me, when I heard voices. Voices of men.
I peeked out of the showers and my heart stopped. A group of cute guys were strolling through the door and opening the lockers. Sure enough, their stuff was inside. I’d done the unthinkable; I’d accidentally entered the men’s locker room. I was stuck naked in the showers, with no towel.
These men began to undress. Pulling their flimsy shirts off over their bulging muscles. Tugging their shorts down. There were their thick, manly cocks. I told myself twice that I like those.
I shrunk backward into the shower room as they started toward me, unaware that there was a girl in there. Then a throng of nude men appeared before me, shocked and surprised to see a naked girl frantically covering her jiggly lady bits under the persistent spray of water.
They laughed and approached, casually getting under their own shower heads, watching me with sly grins. I meekly raised my hand and waved. “Uh, hi,” I said, “I… went into the wrong locker room.”
“No problem,” they said, “You can help us wash.” Then I’d take a bar of soap and rub it all over their sexy bodies. They’d do the same for me. It was sensual, exhilarating, arousing. And then I’d let go completely and let them take me, in turns; fucking me over and over in the shower.
As I lay in bed thinking of this, I suddenly burst out laughing at the stupidity of it. Startled, Geoffrey sprung off the bed and ran out of the room. This was exactly what I needed to remind myself that I was straight; a fantasy I thought would horrify any lesbian: lots of men dominating me with their penises. It was enough to calm my anxiety and confusion. For a while anyway. At least it got me back to sleep.
Morning came and I was a wreck again. I had asked Nicole what to bring, but her reply wasn’t helpful. She had simply said, “Clean underwear, toothbrush, bear repellant.” I packed as if I was taking a vacation, then I removed three quarters of what I’d initially selected.
I stood for a while in the shower, asking myself, “Why are you doing this?” I looked down at the trail of soap slipping between my breasts, down over my bellybutton, and vanishing between my legs. “This is the cleanest you’re going to be, all weekend.” I sighed. I slipped my fingers down, following the soapy water. I was tingling.
Nicole pulled up in a rental car. She had bagels and coffee and a curated playlist for the journey. She tossed my stuff in the afyon escort bayan back, and we were off just like that. Once we got out of the city, and I felt the wind in my hair, I was surprisingly relaxed. Maybe I just wasn’t thinking about the camping part just yet.
“How did you even hear about this camping spot?” I asked, finally.
“Bear Mountain?” she asked, “Everyone knows about it. Haven’t you ever visited the Hudson Valley?”
“Not really,” I said.
“You’re like one of those New Yorkers that non-New Yorkers think we’re like,” she laughed. “The Hudson Valley is one of our secret escapes. You can go hike Breakneck Ridge. There’s great fishing. Kayaking. Breweries. I know a bunch of people with little cabins in the Catskills. It’s awesome.”
“Wow, I had no idea.”
“You need to get out more,” she said, grinning.
We sped along the Hudson River and I saw the landscape change. There were forests and meadows, little river towns, and vineyards. I saw strange little islands, an old castle ruin. It was mysterious and beautiful. Before I knew it, we saw Bear Mountain looming in the distance. A huge, green monolith climbing into the bright blue sky.
We parked the car in a small lot by a trailhead and strapped our backpacks on. Hers looked like she was about to climb Everest. I looked like I was on my way to sixth grade math class.
I breathed in. This was it; the edge of civilization as I knew it. Other brave travelers were getting out of their cars, about to wander off into the unknown, in all directions. Who knew if they’d ever be seen or heard from again. Bears deserved to eat too, right? I gulped, but I was also excited. I couldn’t decide whether I should allow myself that excitement or not.
“This way! I know a great spot,” said Nicole, excitedly. I followed, putting my full trust in her.
We strolled down a trail. I gazed up at the green canopy above. It was full of sparkling pinholes where the sunlight streamed through. I could hear the breeze rush through the leaves. It was peaceful and strange, given how used to the sights and sounds of the city I was.
We walked for about half an hour, and I listened to Nicole tell stories about other times she’d camped in these woods. Seeing the experience through her eyes made it sound more appealing to me. I could picture the gentle streams, the glimpse of a young doe, and the blue, crystal pools which she described in detail.
“Hang on,” said Nicole, stopping short, “I gotta pee.”
“Where can we do that?” I said, searching around for any sign of civilization.
“Umm. Here?” she said, raising an eyebrow.
“Just… here? Okay…” I said.
Before I had a chance to start worrying about having to pee in the forest, I was caught off guard by Nicole. She squatted down right where she stood, and slid down her shorts and panties. Within seconds, a strong stream of urine emerged between her legs and hissed against the leaves.
I turned my head away quickly. I hadn’t seen anything. My heart was racing. Would she expect me to pee in front of her? I was curious and wanted to turn back around, but I couldn’t.
“Hey, you’d better move!” she laughed.
I turned and saw she was still squatting there. A river of urine was making its way quickly toward me, so I leapt out of the way, hoisting myself up onto a thick root, and wrapped my arms around a tree.
“Sorry!” she said.
“No problem, thanks for warning me,” I said with a smile. She smiled back.
Nicole finished up and pulled her underwear back on. I was surprised to see that they were lacy. Not exactly what I expected for a camping trip.
“Those are an interesting choice for the outdoors,” I blurted out, before regretting it.
“Oh, actually they are travel underwear. REI sells girly ones too.”
I had no idea what REI was. “What exactly constitutes travel underwear?” I asked.
“Quick drying. You can wash ’em in a river,” she said, pulling up her shorts.
“Oh, I see,” I said, embarrassed at my total lack of knowledge about these things.
“You can borrow some of mine if you want,” she said.
As we continued walking, I found myself imagining that I borrowed a pair of Nicole’s panties while mine dried, so that she wouldn’t see me naked. Then I began thinking about Nicole and I, squatting side by side, washing our underwear in a river together, our bare asses sticking out for all the world to see. Somehow I found this exciting, but then I stopped myself from pondering it.
Finally we came upon an idyllic grove by a blue stretch of shimmering water.
“This is it!” explained Nicole, sliding her backpack off her shoulders and letting it slump to the ground. “Isn’t it beautiful?”
“Yeah!” I said. And it was, like something you’d see on a postcard. She ran over and gave me a hug. I realized she’d never given me a hug before. At least, not like that one. She smelled amazing.
“Thanks so much for joining me! This is gonna be fun!”
“If escort afyon you say so!” I replied, with a smirk. She laughed.
“You’ll see,” she said.
Over the next couple of hours I got quite a lesson in camping. I learned how to pitch a tent, collect firewood, even estimate the time from the location of the sun. I was shocked to hear what Nicole knew. I was also skeptical that I would ever need any of this knowledge again, but I was nevertheless completely absorbed in anything Nicole wanted to tell me.
As it grew late, though, my anxieties started to return. Not that I was afraid of the dark or anything, but out in the wilderness I feared it was about to get really dark. Dark-dark. Dark as in when all the creepy crawlies that you cannot see come out. Or worse. Thankfully we had a campfire blazing in no time, which seemed like a feat of sorcery to me.
We pulled some logs close to the fire to use as seats and had a small meal from the supplies we had packed, as night quickly fell. I felt small and vulnerable sitting there. Just the two of us, in a soft bloom of warm light surrounded by miles of darkness. I couldn’t see beyond our tiny sphere of existence. All I could hear was a vast matrix of strange chattering sounds.
“Hang on, I’m gonna change,” said Nicole. She unzipped the tent flap and crawled inside. I gazed at the fire, aggressive and fluid, tearing at the snapping twigs. I zoned out for I don’t know how long, before I heard a commotion behind me.
Nicole emerged from the tent, wearing only her lace panties. I gawked in surprise at the sight of her naked breasts; perfect teardrops with richly colored, perky nipples. She looked like the European models that walked the runway in sheer tops that didn’t hide anything. Not that I would know. Her breasts danced slightly in the flickering firelight as she reached back into the tent to pull out the rest of her clothes.
Nicole noticed me watching and looked down at her boobs suddenly. I quickly averted my eyes. When she approached and I looked back up, I saw that she had thrown on an old, oversized t-shirt that came down over her panties. She sat down next to me, smiling.
“Aren’t you afraid someone will see you?” I asked in a small voice.
“Out here? No one is around.”
“How do you know?” I glanced out at the darkness. I felt it was full of unseen eyes. Watching, listening.
She laughed. “If anyone comes by at this hour, you’ll see them a mile away. You need a flashlight to get anywhere.”
“Oh, I guess that’s true,” I replied.
Nicole leaned back and gazed up at the stars. She stuck her chest out as she did this. I could see the soft mounds of her breasts jutting forward. Her nipples were erect, and made the fabric poke out. I couldn’t stop staring. Why was I staring? “Just stop,” I had to tell myself.
She turned toward me, catching my gaze again. She narrowed her eyes. Now I was beginning to feel really awkward.
“So…” she said. “How do you like it so far?”
“It’s nice,” I said, “It’s so quiet and peaceful.”
“I told you,” she said, “Sometimes you gotta get away and take in a little nature. This is where we came from.”
“Yeah,” I said.
“Sometimes it feels more weird to me to be in the city, hiding behind makeup and clothes, buried in concrete and brick. It feels so… I dunno… fake sometimes.”
“That’s true,” I commented, “I can’t believe I’m not really thinking about… anything really, for once. It’s weird!”
She grinned and gave me another hug. I felt the breasts that I’d been so fascinated by press against my arm. They were as soft and warm as I imagined they’d be. I felt that tingle that I still didn’t understand.
“Anyway,” she said, gazing into the firelight, “Are you gonna sleep like that?”
“Oh, I guess not,” I said.
I wasn’t sure what to do. I brought my fuzzy pajamas but they only made me think of the dream I had about Nicole, and I was embarrassed at the thought that I even brought them on a camping trip.
“I’ll be right back,” I added. Then I headed toward the tent.
I climbed inside and sat there for a moment, thinking. I figured I’d just follow Nicole’s lead and take off my jeans. I slid them off. Then I pulled off my t-shirt. Then I unclasped my bra. I sat there wearing only a pair of panties. I felt incredibly naked like that, in a tent, in the middle of a dark forest.
I peeked out of the tent and watched Nicole. She had laid back on our log by the fire. I couldn’t tell if she was staring up at the sky or toward the tent. Either way, I was sure she couldn’t see me. Her t-shirt was tugged up a bit toward her waist. One leg was straight and the other knee was bent, so I could see her panties between her legs. She had a bit of a wedgie that I couldn’t look away from. I tried to convince myself that I didn’t want to see the impression of Nicole’s camel toe.
I peered critically at my large, round breasts and sighed, thinking of hers and how they felt against my arm moments earlier. I leaned back, and ran my fingers back and forth over my nipples, feeling them begin to harden. I wished mine were as beautiful as hers. I felt small and insignificant. I felt unattractive. I couldn’t help comparing my body to everyone else’s. I felt as dark and gloomy as the darkness that surrounded us.