Camille ushered me to the bathroom, which was communal to the 3 flats on the level. It was an overly large vacuous space, polished white and black tiles on the floor, multiple chrome heated towel racks, with a large ornate venetian cut glass mirror positioned above two deep porcelain basins. All fittings were polished chrome. In the corner of the room was the bathtub. One of those beautiful, deep, wrought iron claw-foot jobs, the sort that would easily accommodate an amorous couple. In the opposite corner was the loo, with a flush chain that reached up into the ceiling. Last light spilled through exterior shutters and gave the room a regal, golden glow. I could well have been dreaming. Camille ran the bath and told me to take as much time as I wished, she would be down the hall. I studied myself in the mirror and drifted away from any self-conscious thoughts as the water steamed and bubbled behind me. This would feel so good.
I realised I hadn’t a towel and ventured back down the hall asking Camille if she would kindly lend me one, which she did. I closed the bathroom door behind me, searching for a latch of some sort, that didn’t exist. Strange! The bath rose wonderfully and beckoned me in. I removed my clothes and left them in a pool on the cool tiles, vowing to wash them at the earliest opportunity, my wardrobe wasn’t extensive.
There’s few explicitly luxurious feelings that can match that first foray of toes and feet into a hot bath. The sensations, multiplied over the period of time since my last bath, made my skin crawl and itch. The water was hot. The hardest part of getting into a bath for this man, is the dipping of the balls. Allowing them to hit the steaming pond is a trial unto itself. Once in though, they regulate quickly, radiating warmth and a low density euphoria. Inside the bath, I felt the world of my troubles steadily dissipate and, after some minutes vanish completely. In this place, I needn’t be bothered, I needn’t have concern, I was safe. If I wasn’t so enthralled in my situation I might have shed a few tears. Of equal parts elation and despair.
I began to scrub the streets from my body, stripping back to the pale white skin for which I have my mother to thank. And then without warning, Camille walked through the door. She carried with her a chair, and in the other hand an ashtray. I was startled and brought my knees to my chest. Camille spoke in her intoxicating tones, asking me not to mind her presence. She placed the chair at the foot of the bath and returned to close the door. I wasn’t sure what to do. Camille perched herself on the chair and pleaded with me to carry on. She removed an oversized Stuyvesant from its packet and rolled it with expert fingers before placing it between her lips. Not for the first time did I notice that Camille wasn’t an unattractive woman, with very appealing features. I continued with my bathing, albeit a little shyly. I concentrated on lathering my legs and feet. I wasn’t watching, but I could hear Camille drawing deeply on her cigarette, and exhaling with just as much purpose. I felt as if under a spotlight, but it wasn’t unpleasant. I soaped my way up my legs before inevitably landing at their apex. I massaged the suds into my crevices, my balls and cock. I felt Camille’s gaze as it followed my hands. She then queried whether all my fellow countrymen were like me. In what way? Tall, long hair, rugged looking. I told her how diverse my homeland was and gave her a snapshot of society there. She spoke very little other than to affirm her understanding. She smoked and watched my hands, occasionally smiling. At this point I became very comfortable with her presence. I didn’t know what, if anything was happening, but I didn’t object. I soaped my torso and arms, paying special attention to my pits and then my nails. Camille then offered to wash my hair for me. I declined, my locks were not to be wet, let alone shampooed. She protested that I must shampoo my hair but I wouldn’t budge. She stood up and approached the side of the bath. I told her again the hair was not for washing. She offered then to at least wash my back, the parts I couldn’t reach. I was a touch dubious of her intentions but wasn’t prepared to pass up a back scrub. I succumbed. Camille knelt by my side and soaped a sponge. She put one hand on my shoulder and swept warm sudsy water up my back. She didn’t scrub as much as stroke. She spent considerable time on each shoulder, leaning into me to reach my far side. In close I could smell the alcohol on her person, even over the cigarettes. But it wasn’t offensive. On the contrary, I was finding her attentions somewhat arousing and panicked a little when a rush of blood flooded into my cock. I wasn’t expecting it, however Camille was pushing some buttons. I tried to hide the fact. Camille carried on with her sponging and I couldn’t hold back my hard-on. This wasn’t lost on Camille. I could only see her out of the corner of my eye, but I knew she was watching my struggle. She expelled a breathy smile, audibly. You shouldn’t be ashamed she said, meltingly with accent. I was a little, I was hard as and unable to hide it. Camille continued to swab my back and neck, it felt good, deliriously so. Camille then let her hand slip off my shoulder, tracing down over my rib cage and tummy she them wrapped her hand around the head of my dick, squeezing. I startled and pushed her hand away. My cock jolted. You shouldn’t be ashamed she repeated, before returning to her seat, you have a beautiful cock. I wasn’t prepared for any of this. My naivety and inexperience painted me red in the cheeks. I tucked myself into a ball. Camille looked me in the eye. In her pupils I saw an inky black darkness, the bottomless depths of her recent sorrow, complete and confounding, without escape. Through her eyes poured the essence and soul of the confident and accomplished woman who once was, not long ago. But she that sat before me now, looking right through me, was just a shell. I did feel ashamed. If you don’t mind I’d like to get out now. She didn’t mind, she remained silent, motioned to a towel and removed herself and the chair from the room. The ashtray remained precariously balanced on the edge of the bath.
My hard-on deflated slowly as I dried myself, returning to the mirror to ask myself what the fuck was going on. I had no answer. This is where despair had delivered me, into the hands of despair.
I cleaned out the bath and tentatively returned to Camille's apartment. She was in the kitchen. Would you like a drink. As if nothing had happened. Yes please. Beer, wine, whiskey. Wine would be nice. I retreated to the bedroom and fished through my pack for clean clothes. I felt suitably refreshed, although a tad unnerved.