He spent more than his usual two hours at the gym, burned off the extra steam that the Phoenix had brought forth. He couldn’t stop thinking about what he’d do if he had her alone. Peel off those panties as she lay sprawled across the counter. Make her keep the heels on while he lapped at her pussy. He’d tongue fuck her first, get her right to the brink. Flick her nipples and pinch them until she couldn’t stand any more. Then he’d fuck her like she’d never been fucked. His dick was hard again and he was in gym shorts jogging on the treadmill. He took an extra-long hot shower before putting it on steam mode for fifteen minutes. Frankie was tempted to jerk off in the gym shower but knew better, he’d lose his shit if he saw some other guy doing it thus considered it off limits for himself. But his cock was so painfully hard that it bordered on obscene. It bulged with blueish veins and pre-cum leaked from the tip. He thought of his grandparents, plucking and beheading chickens, walking his dog. Basically, anything that would take his mind off of the Phoenix in her skirt. Legs built to be wrapped around his waist, mouth designed to savor his cock.
He dried off and shook the water out of his hair. Gave himself a rubdown with the towel and slipped into a fresh pair of athletic pants. He grabbed his bag, stuck ear buds in and shook hands with a few guys on his way out. He walked fast toward the exit trying to escape the groupies who wanted him to pose for selfies or sign autographs.
When Francisco’s trainer, Lou, had talked him into starting a fitness Instagram page, he’d never in a million years imagined it would take off like it had. That people would be so passionate about watching his progress, his workouts, his goddamned meal preparations that even bored him. But take off it did, and within a year and half, Frankie had acquired a half of a million followers and his own groupies who liked to stalk him at the gym.
Frankie ran for the elevators just as they were closing. He had to go upstairs to maintenance to punch in for the day. He barely made it through and the elevator was already packed. Some guy in a suit groaned like Frankie was the last straw in an already terrible morning.
“Where one eats, two can eat,” he smiled at the crowd. It was a saying his grandmother used, but maybe it didn’t translate so great into English. He shrugged. Frankie was facing the mirrored wall and everyone else was facing forward to get off. But there wasn’t enough room for him to maneuver to face the other way. He noticed the Phoenix in the back the second he stepped in. Somehow the air changed when he was around her. It became thicker; the temperature rose almost imperceptibly. She averted her eyes and he wasn’t surprised she didn’t notice him. She probably only went for big shots with six figure salaries. Or maybe even that wasn’t enough. She wanted billionaires with private jets and the works. Even if he ever made it big, Frankie was convinced he’d never become so shallow. Sure he liked nice things, but he wasn’t a jerk. He’d fly commercial, still hug his grandmother and walk his dog.
“Oh my God, are you Fit and Full Frankie?” a girl squealed when she looked up from her phone. Then her friend looked up fast and eeped at the top of her lungs.
“Holy shit! No way! I was just looking at your video for abs that went up last night!” She fanned her hands in front of her face as if she were going to faint. “We follow you, like, religiously. You are totally my fit goals inspiration!”
Frankie could feel both heat and color rising to his face. He chanced a glance at the Phoenix and she was looking right at them, curiosity piqued, staring critically at his face. He looked down quickly back at the girls. Fit and Full Frankie had at first been a joke, the fit for his body and the full for sharing meal plans. Lou, his loyal trainer had joked that the full stood for “full of himself.”
“Could we get a selfie, please?”
“O.M.G. that would make our whole trip! Wait until I tell the girls on my squad!” The taller girl was jumping up and down, fists clenched in front of her mouth.
“Sure,” Frankie told them, sheepish grin overtaking his face.
They emptied out onto the twenty-third floor to catch the elevator that took them to the higher levels. Frankie was used to getting these reactions, but so far he hadn’t had many at work. Mostly they happened at the gym or even walking out on the streets of Manhattan. He posed with each girl, hamming it up and flexing, letting them grab onto his biceps.
“Oh, my God, Frankie! Can we do one of those photos like you did with the Playboy twins? Where you lifted them off their feet? That would be so hot!”
“Sure, why not?” he humored them. To his embarrassment, one of the teenagers turned and grabbed the Phoenix just as she was passing back through the hall.
“Could you please take it?”
The girls were both so over the top, acting like he was a real celebrity and not just some Instagram star.
“Oh, sure,” she said, stopping suddenly. She took the phone and flipped her hair over her shoulder. Frankie was entranced watching her take their request seriously. And damned if he wasn’t completely mortified that this would be the way she’d now see him, as some teenage internet heartthrob who was full of himself. He lifted the girls up reluctantly and they mewled like kittens and giggled like schoolgirls. They crossed their ankles and he lifted them higher off the ground. They snatched their phones back from the Phoenix without even saying thank you.
“Can we tag you, Frankie?” they pleaded.
“Sure,” he said good naturedly. “Hey, thanks for the picture,” he said to the Phoenix. He wanted to catch her before she walked away. Something about her reminded him of that actress from Friends, Jennifer Aniston. The Phoenix was a little more voluptuous and probably younger, but she had the same earnest face that was beautiful, but natural and quirky enough for him to find fascinating.
“Anytime,” she replied curtly. Her mouth hinted at a smile but it wasn’t a full commitment. She clacked away in her heels taking those irresistible legs and the sway in her hips with her.
Frankie punched in and cracked his back by raising his arms behind his head. He was sore from last night and still had a case of blue balls even though he’d jerked off at home in bed to the memory of her ass stretching against that tight skirt and her delicate neck and cleavage underneath that white shirt. Today she was dressed to kill and he got the feeling that the Phoenix went to battle every day for her job. Like maybe she was the only woman employed by the firm or maybe they didn’t quite appreciate all the work that she did. Maybe she was gunning for a promotion and show them what she was worth. Frankie took work seriously too, benefits and all that were important—necessary, but at least he didn’t feel like his head was on the chopping block or he wasn’t good enough for the gig. The Phoenix seemed to carry stress, between her shoulders, in her back, maybe even between her legs. Maybe there was something to be said for mindless jobs that were basically manual labor, at least he could escape every night and do exactly what he cared about. One thing he noted while she snapped the fan picture with the girls, was that the Phoenix didn’t wear a wedding ring, the realization made him grin and feel lighter on his feet. Not like she’d ever even consider going out with a janitor, but he liked to imagine her home alone in her bed instead of in some dude’s arms who wasn’t him.
He didn’t see her again for the rest of the day. He finished all of his work and the supervisor let him go early. He changed in the locker room at work and decided to jog to his gym to tick off his cardio.