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Marinara Sauce

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This is Jane’s favorite bar, with Jane’s favorite appetizers and Jane’s favorite cheesecake and Jane’s favorite art and Jane’s favorite place to forget about work and tune into Teri. That’s what Teri knows, but that is not how things are going. Much to the contrary, Jane doesn’t seem to know any of those facts about her. Sure, Jane got shot…but did the gunman steal her memory, too?

The beat changes in the background music, jerking Teri out of her reverie. She gently curses the DJ on some unseen satellite radio station that is being pumped into an otherwise unremarkable bar. But this bar was Jane’s bar! Jane’s! bar! That’s why Teri comes here, right? Not because she likes it, but because Jane likes it…

…and Teri likes Jane.

Of course Teri likes Jane. Jane is her boss, her paycheck, her reason for rolling out of bed in the morning. But Teri might just like like Jane, to break it down to middle school language. Which is not okay. There is nothing okay about like liking your boss. Parker is a good example of all the terrible things that can come from like liking your boss, and Teri doesn’t need to have a Parker situation on her hands.

In the seconds between the music pulling Teri out of her reverie and Teri falling down another rabbit hole, a runner has dropped off several of the plates Teri ordered. Thinking Jane would remember to come to the bar, Teri ordered all of Jane’s favorite things: sweet potato fries with caramel glaze, bruschetta, cheesecake bites, and the coveted calamari.

A fit of pique seizes Teri again and she grabbed for some calamari. If Jane wasn’t coming, then there’s no point in saving her some. Why go to the trouble for someone who has hopped off to another planet and give so much as a by-your-leave before the trip? Exactly. The hot breading sears the tips of Teri’s fingers, but she’s too distracted to notice. Instead, she mechanically dips her little rings in the marinara sauce and starts chewing.

Each bite takes her thoughts closer to Jane. Jane loves this bar, Jane loves this food, Jane loves this job, Jane loves me. That’s why Teri loves Jane. Teri loves every inch of her body. One by one, Teri dips and pops each ring of calamari, chewing over her mental space as much as her physical task. The fried tentacles are sending Teri to places she normally reserves for her time in bed late at night…

…places where Jane is stepping out of a steamy bath, scented with something feminine and delicate that was probably a gift from Teri. Or maybe Jane is reaching for the newspaper at breakfast and her rob slips to reveal everything. Or maybe Jane is perched on her desk, skirt hiked up to make room for Teri’s face between her plump, luscious thighs. Teri’s moans of delight fill the air around Jane, covering the scenes in a pleasant patina of familiar.

The song changes again, bringing Teri back to the bar. This DJ is really over-doing things today! A quick survey of the table reveals an empty plate of calamari and three other perfectly plated pieces, waiting for Jane to enjoy them. Teri isn’t ready to abandon hope or her fantasy so she gives the sign for “Another plate, and fast!” as a server cruises by. Maybe this plate will take Teri into the bedroom…