Anya came to him shouting, bounding across the shore, the wind catching her hair and the sand battering the soles of feet she’d stripped from her sandals before she left them in the backseat of her car. Her belly was tight from such a well of emotion she felt she could blow like the wind, one way, then another, but she didn’t want to ignore the pain in her side anymore, the bruises on her arms that she’d stared at, long and hard, sure this was it. This was now.
They met in a collision so forceful it seemed contrary to all they’d been—their chests slamming tight, their mouths wild, their hands seeking one another, needing one another, puffs of breath spilling from their lips as they clung. Josh kissed away the drops rolling from the corners of Anya’s eyes, and she smoothed her thumbs over the line of his brow, both of them whispering their love and their tales as the wind kicked up the water once more. This time the sea didn’t sing to them, but for them, washing onto the shore and summoning them close, then retreating to leave the smooth spread of sand upon which they were meant to lay.
Once Josh drew back from her, he cupped the sides of her face. She thought maybe she was crazy, or they were completely out of their minds—but when his palms, warm and sweet, held her tight, Anya knew this was right, knew the shivering inside was part of the course, part of their fairy tale. One cannot have joy without pain, and they had surely had theirs—she saw the trouble in Josh’s eyes that melted when he looked at her, felt the certainty brimming between them as he pressed his lips to hers, kissing her like he never wanted her to leave again. Like he never would, either. She leaned hard against him and his knees gave, taking them down to the wet shore, and Josh pulled her onto him until she straddled his hips and felt the power she found with him. With him she wasn’t broken, afraid, or weak. She was everything she wanted to be, everything she could be, and as he arched up against her Anya felt the way his body told her this, and the desire in the trail of his hands over her skin. She kissed him as they both fumbled with his shirt, and once he shrugged it off his shoulders she lifted her dress up over her head. He gasped, for she’d come naked beneath, not wanting anything to stop them this time, both of their lives discarded to leave only them, this moment, this truth they’d sought. When Josh spread kisses over her breasts and eased out of his pants, she’d never felt more alive, more real, than they were now.
They had come here many times, but never had they done this, naked here, so open, so free. The waves crested and swelled, reassuring them, dancing in the sway of the wind as Josh ran his hands up her sides, lovingly touching her scars. Anya leaned back above him, letting him see all of her. For so long they’d snuck here in the dark, their short visits a rush to touch, to kiss, to move together before time slipped away and they were forced to leave each other once more—but now, she imagined that time stood still as Josh stroked her skin, then thumbed the split of her folds. They murmured there with wanting sighs, hungry and needy but slow in their caresses, until finally Anya could wait no more. She guided him into her, and Josh groaned at the touch of her hand, at the silky feel of her encircling him tight. And once Anya began to move above him, digging her knees into the sand and rolling her hips to take him deeper inside, her body quaked with the choice they’d made. They rode it gleefully, confidently, their excitement filling the moans that carried onto the wind, surrounding them in a chorus that stirred the pleasure in her, stronger this time, lifting her soul like it always had with him. Anya closed her eyes but Josh slipped his fingers into her mouth, drawing her gaze as she shuddered above him. The spasms of her cunt gripped him, urged him, made him mutter words of love before he, too, came, and she fell over him there on the sand, their bodies hot and slick, shaking with this new union, this wholly different love they’d opted to share—theirs and theirs alone. When their breaths slowed she peeled herself off him, trailing a finger down his chest and smiling at the mirrored trace he made over her belly and along her leg.
“We’re going to be happy,” he said. “I know it.”
She nodded and took his hand, pulling both of them up from the shore. They were covered in sand so Josh led her forward, into the water they’d never dared go before. The waves licked at their feet as they walked into it, and Anya squealed at how cold it was against her skin. Josh cupped it and splashed it over her before she did the same right back, and then the two of them ventured until their legs were submerged, the water cocooning their calves, knees, and thighs, the current so strong it tried to rock them from their stance but failed as they wrapped their arms around one another, kissing there, close.
“This is real,” Josh said. “We’re real. And I think we’re going to be okay.”
Okay echoed in Anya’s ears and she closed her eyes, loving that Josh’s lips came soft again, peppering her upper lip, then the bottom one, before he kissed her full and strong.
Maybe he was right and they would be. Or, maybe they wouldn’t. But Anya knew what surged between them was magnificent like the tide—here now, loud now, sweeping up against their legs as they held one another beneath the moon that had hardly waned. It was as if it had lingered well past its reign to see how the next part of their story began, smiling upon the embrace that molded them together, and sending the wind to kiss their cheeks and gust around them with a whistle of encouragement that had been there all along.