The villa flanked the mountainside and melted into the landscape. The property was surrounded by a grey brick wall, that looked from afar as if it was just mountain face, and the olive trees in the lower part of the property hid the house from indiscreet eyes. The architect had identified that luxury was in the silence and the view, not in an elaborately ornate construction. The house looked smaller than it was; a squat beige construction with squares as its dominant shapes. Built on two levels, the lower part opened onto a red tiled terrace that led to the pool, and each bedroom had its own patio, each alcove sheltered from the next one. An outside kitchen, tucked under the first floor veranda, faced the pool directly, providing an exceptional view beyond the pool to the hills and twin coves beyond, turquoise sea glittering in the distance, caressing barren shores. This part of the island was still unbuilt, devoid of the hordes who relentlessly pursued authentic destinations and by doing so, ruined them.
Veronica was staying there for the latter end of the season, invited by friends of friends to house sit. She spent her days swimming and reading, flopping from her bed to the pool and back again, her skin turning slowly from city grey to rejuvenated white, as she relaxed, then from white to pink, as the sun’s rays spread into her, warming her to her core. She was feeling better than when she arrived, but still desolate as yet another relationship had fallen apart. The villa allowed her to live naked, a timid Eve in an empty garden devoid of fig and apple trees, or even snakes, for that matter. Alone with the olives, though not yet ripe for her picking, she was content. She was, at last, going a honey brown, like Stradivarius’ inimitable mixture of resins.
Today she was waiting for Nikolaos, the masseur. She had looked forward to this massage, cheap and wonderful according to the locals. It was said that he had hands that felt and respected every need. The gate bell rang and she covered herself in her sarong and went to open the gate, to let the man in. He wore a rough linen top and loose black cotton trousers that tied at the waist, and his bald pate glistened in the afternoon sun. He was fitting in the massage before his evening shift at the local bar, where every night he cheerfully served the tourists and occasionally took one home to bed, man or woman, whomever took his fancy. His reputation was that he was never intrusive, he waited for the other to make a move, taking willingly, giving little back. From casual affair to casual affair he was, at nearly fifty, still alone. A budding stomach spoke of ageing, but his firm hands and his hairy torso implied vigour. She looked him over, and greeted him.
‘Hi Nikolaos, how are you? I thought you could set up your massage table by the pool, so we can be outside. What do you think?’
‘Sure, not a problem. Wherever you want.’ Not a man of many words, uncertain in a foreign language, Nikos glanced about uninterestedly. He was there to do a job. The serenity of the place passed him by.
She waved at the corner where she wanted him to set up – under the patio, sheltered from the sun but where the cool breeze still floated unhampered.
‘You want in the sun or in the shade? Better in the shade.’
‘Do you want me to wear underwear at least?’
‘No – if you want naked, is fine.’
She agreed and waited as he set up his table under the porch, putting out towels, oil bottles, rubbing his hands to warm them up and ready them. Once everything was in place, she dropped her silk pareo and climbed on to the bed to lie on her front, exposed to his hands. He dripped some warm oil over her, rubbing it first softly, then firmly, on her back. She relaxed into the experience. It was nice to have a man touch her again, even if it was not sexual. She realised how tense she had been.
Her thoughts floated. She thought of how her last boyfriend had noted that from behind she looked like a violin – the upper bout attached to a long neck, a slim waist and a lower bout that flared out, built with the curves and grace of a violin, down to the F-hole-like dimples that so gracefully curled over her kidneys before the fall of her buttocks. He had pursued her, wooed her, and eventually flown from her, lured by others that were younger and flightier. Her only revenge was that her voice pursued her men. The voice of the underground that said ‘Mind the gap’. The suave voice that welcomed passengers on board the Eurostar. Even the voice that asked BT customers to wait patiently. She unwittingly haunted the lives of those who left her, and who could not forget her, even willingly, unless they exiled themselves to another country. It was, after all, she thought, gazing at the poolside, a form of justice.
As her mind wandered, she came to realise that Nikolaos’ hands were no longer on her back, but had moved down to her legs. In fact they were navigating higher and higher up between her legs, which were slightly spread. He kneaded her thighs then moved further upwards still, lightly brushing her pubic hair. Her sex twitched at the casual touch: suddenly she was alert. His hands came and went, casually at first, then with more purpose. She felt herself getting aroused, wet. His hands moved back up and the tips of both hands brushed against her vulva. He would feel the arousal as she dampened. She focused on the sensation, unsurprised when he slipped a finger into her. He did it so casually it could almost have been a mistake, an error of judgement. He left it in for a fraction of a second, waiting to see her reaction. She did nothing. He withdrew it, then slipped it back in, this time his other hand kneading her buttock. She grasped him from within, indicating that she knew what he was doing. He pushed in a bit further, other hand working its way down the buttock to join the first.
She turned her head. Level with his trousers, her eyes took in the great bulge that showed his own excitement. Not at all professional she thought, wondering whether to be offended or to see what would happen. She pulled her arm up and reached for the waistband of his trousers, deftly opening the loose bow that held them up. As the fabric fell down around his ankles, the sudden nakedness revealed an Apollo-like phallus, bold and erect, and rather well-endowed. He made a small noise as she leaned over to take it in her mouth. His hands faltered, then took up a rhythm similar to her movements. She had not been aware she could accommodate so many fingers inside her and expanded to feel the novel sensation. It was difficult for her to concentrate on giving him pleasure while taking her own. Forgetting herself, she chewed on his penis as her own pleasure increased. He yelped and pulled away, then before she could realise it, leapt on top of her and thrust into her, the massage bed creaking dangerously as he did so.
He filled her so completely that she forgot to be stunned. Moving as one, they each thrust and moaned, both taking selfish pleasure. As he speeded up, she tried to slow him, but he was intent on the finish. She could feel him deeper and deeper, till eventually with a hoarse animal sound he spurted into her, and collapsed on top of her just as she climaxed, bringing the bed crashing to the floor.