The villa reminds Merry very much of that film with Binoche and the Sikh on the motorcycle. It is more than half-ruined and hidden away in the wild country north of Ravenna, a tumbledown fastness in a grove of cypress and olives among the gnarled wind-whittled sun-hammered rock.
At first, they had just stopped on the hot melted mountain blacktop, looking at the rose sun rambling over the pocked plaster and the dangling shutters, at the crows flowing back to their nests in cypress and wind-tower. Drinking in the richness of its isolation, the romance of its abandonment.
‘Shall we?’ He’d said and Merry had nodded wordlessly, her throat suddenly dry and a faint chill fleeting across her skin, goose-fleshed from toe, to ankle, to throat.
He’d put the car in gear and turned slowly into the drive, stones crunching and pinging and the heat-wilted overgrown weeds brushing along the bottom of the car. Merry could feel the stroking along her own bottom, an echo of what surely was to come.
And it did. She had preceded him up the winding stair deliberately, knowing his eyes were on her bum, deliberately putting all the sauce into her walk, hoping her skirt hem would lift and give him glimpses. He’d sped up and, with rasping stubble at her neck and breathing hoarsely, slid his hand up under her skirt, pushing, parting, finding her crux. His finger slid over her bareness, the skin that he’d so carefully shaved, with oil and foam and firmness. Slippery smooth and slippery wet.
And there on the stair he’d fingered her, fast and eager and she’d overbalanced, bending to grasp the stone steps in front, to brace as his breath met her bared arse and his mouth met her trembling cunt. And curled and grunting she’d smelled the flinty fieriness of the old rock, cheek on the age-smoothed stone, and with rattle of belt he’d freed himself and pinned her to the stairs with his glorious cock.
The exploration continued thereafter, his come spilling down her legs, the scent of their mingled lust heady in her nostrils, mingling again with the perfumes of the place and the sweat on their bodies. They’d found the pool just before sunset, on the edge of a courtyard behind. Square and ancient and fed from the smiling mouth of a marble mermaid, the water rushing over her breasts and her curled up tail. The pool was lovely, dark and deep under ancient oaks, tiled sides over a broad mosaic bottom, marvellously illustrated with a merman – seemingly the spouse of the marble girl above. He was delicious, thought Merry, all shoulders and flashing eyes. A wicked grin among the swirls of a green beard, slightly tubby tummy sinking into the sleek loins of his tail.
She’d thought to wash in the pool, but he’d asked her not to. ‘I, I don’t want you clean. Not here, not tonight. Shall, shall we. Stay?’ And she’d assented gleefully and they’d chosen a room and set up their camp. With blankets and cushions from the car and scavenged wood and candles, they’d made a bright, comfortable space and eaten cold cuts and bread and drunk wine and fucked til they were both sore and spent.
Merry woke in the glow of the failing fire and the cold shimmer of starlight from the wide empty windows. She was smelly and sticky and thirsty and thought of the pool. He was fast asleep, his nail-scored back to her, snoring softly into his blankets. Merry found her kimono spilling out of a bag, and, as she took it, out fell her bikini. It was a lovely thing. Very Roman, she thought. Gold lamé, with black lace over, it glimmered in the firelight like a gladiators armour or the scales of a mermaid.
In the sleepy befuddled recesses of her mind, she thought of the merman downstairs, drifting in the dark water. He’d like the bikini. So she put it on. Merry flew downstairs, all happy bare legs and scrambled yellow hair, the gold winking at the dark. She stood in the courtyard under the stars. Not a wink of light except them, alone with the ages. The chill of the morning thrilled her bare skin. An echo now of the anticipation those hours ago. And with the same dry throat and trembling, she approached the pool. There were steps, and she waded down and in, flinching deliciously as the cold rose over ankle and calf, knee and thigh.
She stopped for a while when it reached her bikini. With parted thighs she rocked forwards and backwards and side to side. Hissing as the cold water met her skin, the cold fingers parting and soothing and tingling. Alone with her body she could feel it respond. Respond to the ancient emptiness, the cold water, the caresses of starlight. Deep within her, in those spaceless places, those other infinities hid in the bony angles of pelvis and the pink clenches of flesh, deep within her she half felt, half saw an uncurling thing. A blue flame, blue as a summer lake, blue as the sky, uncurling, whirling, filling her, just as her fine swelling cunt filled the golden knickers.
She dove then, pulled herself deep, felt her breasts and her hips sweep kisses over the pool-bottom, imagined his bright eyes following her silhouette in the dark. And she swam and she dove, she danced in the water, teasing herself. Denying herself her fingers, allowing only the water to rub, tweak and play. She could feel the flush burning in her cheeks and throat and the blue swirls filling her from thighbone to iliac crest, a thunderstorm building in the bowl of her belly, when under the water she felt a touch.
Cold and powerful, not just in the water but of it, winding about her feet and ankles. She gasped and froze, letting her body sink, face gazing from the pool at the stars. The water moved about her. Powerful, muscular. Explorations from ankle to knee like the careful hands of a watery giant. Water-breath wooshed and tickled and she let her hands sink, finding. Broad shoulders. A sea-fronded great head that nuzzled her belly. Hands on her thighs. Great fingers that plucked dainty at the ties over her hips. The clean sear of cold water on her now naked lips. He was cold water and stone and the flicker of weed and he splayed her underwater and she bucked on his tongue and fingers and ground her clit into his eager mouth.
The first time she came, she was hunched over groaning, back bare to the sky, face an inch off the water, wrapped, clenching around the weed hung sea-mount of his head, and the cold rush of his tongue deep inside her. The orgasm broke over her like surf and she hung limp about him as he surged beneath her. She could feel his need in the heave of the water and his now clumsy grasp. He broke the surface, the first pale hints of dawn chasing starlight across his chest, and through the wet gleam of his hair. Hands grasped her and lifted her and her legs found his hips and gripped him and she found herself gasping with longing. She hoped he’d have a cock, somewhere, somehow. He grasped the nape of her neck and fixed her with his mosaic gaze. With his other hand he spread her and thumbed her open. Merry gasped, waiting. Hoping. His hand slid from her, reaching below. She felt the first touch of him slap her bum. Nudging her creases. She reached and found him. Broad and blunt and cold and hard. Textures of scale and of tile, the hard cubes of mosaic, but still as smooth and muscular as the water itself. She marvelled at the wild thing in her hands and guided the blunt nose of it to her wide straining cunt. He stretched her.
Just painfully enough.
She saw her bitten lip reflected in his gaze. And she slid onto him, each strange texture plucking, teasing. As he filled her he changed. She could feel him swell and shift until he filled her completely and pressed against everything just right. Her mind filled with sleet as he began to swim. The long sweeps of his tail rocked her on the hook of his cock. A stretching and swinging bringing a slow swell to her hips. Their gazes grew inward as they swam. The water washed over the tiles and spilt into the courtyard. She rocked and he rolled and his fingers dug into her and she felt it again, the long climb up from wave-trough to crest and, just as she scattered to spray – caught by the first glimmers of sunlight – he burst, and they were lost in tumbling foam. When she came back to herself on the sun warming stone of the pool’s edge, she felt abundantly clean and deliciously cool. Washed inside and out. Gone were the stickiness and sun-fatigue of recent days, that impatience with heat, the surly refusal to even look at the sky. The sky over the villa dawned flat and blue. It would be hot again, but she did not fear it. Merry looked into the pool, at the mosaic on the bottom and the tiles on the side. At the slowly curling and rumbling gold scrap of her bikini, tumbling in the water. She would leave it there, she decided. As an offering.