From Under the Table
“Would you like to order, sir?” A wizened waitress impatiently held her pencil to her notepad, demanding Jake let her do her job as politely as possible.
“No,” the young man said from behind his menu. “I’m just waiting for my friend.” He checked his watch—late as usual.
“Then perhaps you can order a drink?” her wrinkled skin dangled helplessly from her neck.
“Oh, I suppose so. I think I’ll have…” his finger ran over the beer list, “that one,” he pointed to a domestic brew he had no hopes to pronounce. She smiled at her small victory and wrote the order before running to the next table in her charge. As he waited for the beer, Jake compulsively glanced at the smoky establishment’s entrance as if this would make his friend Josh arrive sooner. The beer came shortly but he paced himself just like he did with popcorn at the movie theater. Too many people ate half their bag during the previews, leaving them with almost nothing for the next two hours. His friend Josh was that kind of patron.
A heavy slap on his back jerked him forward, banging his teeth against the glass, nearly chipping them. He grunted as he tried not to choke on the sip, and shot his head to the side. “What the fu…” he stopped when he looked up the tall muscular figure supporting the large head that displayed Josh’s cackling face.
“Gotcha dip shit!”
“You know, I was watching myself,” Jake adjusted his glasses, “you just caught me at a bad time is all!” he explained, doubling the sarcasm’s intensity just in case Josh was too dense.
“Yeah, yeah,” Josh droned as he sat down, hands clasped on the table. He was very much the opposite of Jake. Josh was an Adonis sculpted from Michelangelo himself. A flawless incarnation of the West’s ideals of beauty but unfortunately not of thought. Though a football player back in college, now vanity was his sole motivation to get him into the gym every day and his personality reflected this. His mind was filled with little more than quotes and recollections of a popular culture that put those few people who personified beauty of the body and mind on a pedestal. To Jake it seemed Josh was trying to live that popular myth as best he could. Jake on the other hand was a bit on the short side and enjoyed a good book over conversing with his fellow man.
Whatever flaws Josh had though, he was outgoing and personable so long as you did not mind his bawdy jokes and you didn’t have a pair of breasts. They most certainly would have had nothing to do with each other if they were not both English speakers in a foreign country. How on Earth Josh found the time to learn Czech was beyond him.
The waitress came back. “What would you like?” He snatched Jake’s menu and quickly glossed it over before tossing it back to Jake.
“I’ll have a gin and tonic and a Jack and Coke,” he beamed. The waitress smiled ambiguously as she wrote it down and ambled away.
“You can get those drinks anywhere. Why not something local?”
“It’s Friday and I want what I want,” he shrugged.
“It’s two o’clock in the afternoon.”
“Look around you, Jakey.” He did. Though he had been to Europe many times as a visitor, his American sensibilities about hard work were challenged when he saw how little many Europeans actually did. Five hour days when their paycheck says eight, several beers during an hour long lunch, and even some sack time were standard fare for many jobs. Everyone in the joint was drinking beer or liquor as if they had no other purpose for the rest of the night. “Maybe you need to get local, eh? When in the Czech Republic, do as the Czechs.”
Jake coughed uncomfortably. Though Josh was an idiot by most respects, his simplistic way of seeing the world was often better than Jake’s when it came to everyday life. “So why two drinks?” he asked, changing the subject slightly.
“Oh, sorry, I guess you didn’t see my girlfriend when we came in.” He pointed his thumb arbitrarily, “She hit the can.” Jake shuddered at the brusque word but thought better not to comment. He was no prude but the least Josh could have said was “toilet” or ideally “bathroom.”
“Where’s she from?” Usually the first question asked about new girlfriend’s is how they met but after so long with Josh, Jake already figured it was at a party or on the street. At least for him, girlfriends seemed to form out of thin air. This girl joined a string of affairs Josh had in Europe. Though he occasionally spoke of his girlfriend back in Kansas City, that never stopped him from getting many broads abroad.
“She’s Czech. Her name’s unpronounceable so I just call her ‘Angie.’ She seems to like it. There she is now,” he pointed to the bathrooms opposite him. Jake turned around to spot her but he could not amongst of other patrons walking about.
“Right there,” he pointed indiscriminately.
“I still don’t…” he silenced himself when a young woman approached the table, a pensive smile on her face. She wore a brown knee length skirt of simple design and canlı bahis a white blouse that matched her virginally white knee high stockings. Expecting to find Josh with a beauty not plain looking, but not unattractive, woman was the reason he could not find her. She stood beside the table and looked down, arching her stomach closer as she tucked her long brown hair behind her ear. She looked to Jake with mild interest befitting a girl meeting her boyfriend’s friend.
“American?” she asked, eyebrows raised expectantly.
“Yes. Josh said your name was Angie,” he answered in Czech, “What’s your Czech name?” She said it but Jake looked at her queerly. She shifted uncomfortably, unsure what to do.
“Is something wrong?” she asked in a heavy accent.
“Well, forgive me if I’m wrong, but that name doesn’t seem Czech. And neither do you…” he trailed off, uncertain how to proceed.
Angie beamed. “Yes, yes! My family is Slovak but I was born here. Do you know Slovak?!”
He shook his head. “Sorry, I don’t.”
Her smile faded slightly but remained. “And your name?”
“Jake,” he held out his hand. She shook it and sat down by Josh, nestling into him but continuing to look at Jake with great interest. “Did I just tickle you?” He said in English.
“Sorry—that’s a vague English expression. It’s just you seem so excited right now.” She blushed.
“Usually it’s just my countrymen who notice the difference—and usually then they hate me for it,” she said in her native tongue. “You notice and don’t care.”
“Oh I care, just not in a negative way.” The drinks Josh ordered arrived and he put the gin and tonic in front of his flavor of the month. She glowered at it as he sipped his Jack and Coke.
“Why did you get me this?”
“I wanted to do something nice.”
“You did this same thing yesterday and I told you I don’t drink this early. If I do, I end up drinking way too much later…” she explained to him again, though Jake figured Josh probably did not care. Though relatively new acquaintances, Jake knew alcohol was his preferred way to get unwitting women into the mood. Angie furrowed her brow and crossed her arms, immersed irretrievably in frustrated thoughts. Yeah, he probably got his way with her last night and she woke up mad at herself, saying she would never do it again, and hoping he would not either. It was a romantic courtesy and as far as Jake knew, Josh never did anything in his weeks long “relationships” that did not serve his own interests in the end. Jake never stopped to ask himself if anyone had ever bothered to tell Josh this. It was entirely possible he was simply too dense to realize what made his relationships so short.
“Sorry, I forgot…” he shrugged his shoulders indifferently, diffusing the concern by pretending (or actually believing?) there was none. She undid her arms, brought the glass to her still frowning lips, and took a large sip as she looked to the oaf. For the sake of social sanity, Jake pretended not to notice this displeasure and began talking with her as if nothing happened.
“So did your family come here before the Soviet collapse?” She perked a bit, sat straight up, taking herself from Josh’s nook though his hand remained around her shoulders.
“Yeah,” she answered matter of factly.
“It must have been tough. Back in the US our regions aren’t so distinct and you can move almost anywhere and adjust. Not like that here,” he shook his head. She smiled more.
“Yeah that’s true.” Just then Josh’s cellphone rang and he relinquished her shoulders to answer it. Angie made to let him exit the booth but he stayed in place, talking and laughing into the phone. They both rolled their eyes and she repositioned herself. “Hey, I have a question,” she leaned forward and whispered. “You’re the second American I’ve really talked to and the first one couldn’t answer me,” she nodded her head to the left, indicating Josh.
“What about?” Jake mimicked her posture and tone.
“How much power does each little state have by itself?” Jake rolled his eyes at Josh again.
“Yeah, I’m not surprised.” So he gave the ten minute explanation of the American federal system. He started with Articles I and IV which detail State powers, the ninth and tenth amendments, and some manufactured scenarios where states might be in conflict with the national government, or if one chose to see it another way, one state versus the elected representatives of the people in the other 49. In the middle of it the waitress came and took their food orders—Josh continued on the phone even as she took his. Though Jake stammered a few times, searching for the correct word in Czech, he rolled on, keeping Angie’s interest. By the end she was slouched forward, elbows spread on the table, and still hanging onto every word.
“You are so knowledgeable!” she shook her head in disbelief. “Do other Americans know all this?”
“Well, yeah, but not many. Just like other countries we have our share of idiots,” bahis siteleri he quickly glanced to Josh who heard nothing. Angie covered her mouth to laugh. “But then again this is what I know. Just because someone doesn’t know this it doesn’t make them an idiot anymore than I am because I can’t do trigonometry. You must know at least something I don’t have a clue about,” the final statement, Jake realized, came out arrogantly but thankfully it got lost in translation.
“Yeah, I’m a masters student for physics,” she said humbly.
“There you go!” he pointed triumphantly. “I couldn’t understand Newton let alone Hawking. And you’re a masters student—something I’m not. So you must be smarter than me,” he smirked, filling her deflated ego. She grew redder and Jake could swear, though not with certainty, that her blushing breasts perked up like she had pressed her shoulder blades together. “So what can you tell me about physics?” Her eyes opened wide but before she could open her mouth, Josh interrupted.
“Whoa, you know physics?” he paused his phone conversation. She squinted nervously and looked up at him.
“That’s my girl!” he wrapped his arm around and shook her vigorously. She winced uncomfortably and shifted in her seat when his arm stayed there and he resumed talking on the phone. After she began speaking about physics and her masters work, she forgot about his arm and smiled again. She was ten times more beautiful when she was happy though Jake did his best not to notice otherwise he would depress himself wondering why such a beautiful smart girl would be with a viking like Josh. Jake attentively listened to her though he probably only understood half of it, the language barrier aside.
“And what I discovered was that…” she continued into minute ten before Josh interrupted her again.
“Ok,” he smacked her on the back, “I’m done on the phone so you guys can stop talking about boring stuff,” he proclaimed, smiling like he made a joke and saved them. Jake flashed an irritated glare but Angie stared disappointedly at the counter, unwilling to make a fuss. She took another large sip of her drink, throwing herself to what she thought she was helpless over. Jake shook his head at her reprovingly, appalled that she had so little self worth that she let that brute get away with daily disrespect. Though it was not his business, Jake decided to tell Josh off.
“We weren’t bored, Josh. Your new girlfriend,” he emphasized ‘new,’ “is quite intelligent and fun to talk with. I was learning something new.”
“I tried learning once in college—didn’t work out to well but I did get to play football. Oh, speaking of working out, I was at the gym today and…” he began droning, staring but not looking at their faces. Angie scowled at Jake though it was clearly intended for Josh, and Jake scowled enough for the both of them. Could Josh really be that dense? Could he not see their displeasure when he recounted his exercising routine? Then quite unexpectedly, Angie smiled.
Jake looked at her curiously. Her rigid posture clearly showed displeasure for her current situation so that meant her mind had taken her to a more pleasurable place either in the past or in the the future. No, it wasn’t a smile. More of a smirk. A mischievous smirk like cartoon villains get when they scheme. She glanced briefly at Josh before she stared directly back to Jake. Slowly, her fingers creeped up and around her breasts, lightly massaging them.
Jake quietly gasped and looked at Josh, still in his own world as he talked about “reps,” then to the other restaurant patrons. As far as he could tell no eyes were upon Angie who continued touching herself as if the crowded restaurant/bar was empty Her palms circled the tips as she peeked at them, almost pouting that her breasts were trapped in her shirt. She pushed her hands away but kept her middle finger on each, running circles around her nipples. Finally they came to the center of her blouse. They expertly popped the second button open, flinging the stretched fiber into opposite directions. The third button came next, followed by the fourth. With every button her face and breasts violently shuddered, simultaneously looking calm and collected like nothing unusual was happening. When the shirt opened halfway down her breasts, she slowly turned her neck to him, continuing to tease the fabric with her nimble fingers. Then suddenly she inhaled deep, arched herself backwards, and pulled the unbuttoned half open, nearly bearing her whole breast if not for her modest white bra. Jake’s shocked blink drew Josh out of his monologue.
“What’s up?” he looked down to Angie, the source of Jake’s reaction. Though her buttons were still undone, she appeared calm (bored?) and simply looked back serenely. “Something seem up with him, babe?” Josh looked briefly down her cleavage, wondering if it was a new development or he just simply had not noticed it before. She casually glanced back to Jake whose eyes shifted between the couple bahis şirketleri in front of him, careful not to dwell too long on her breasts.
“Yeah,” she nodded her head slightly as her left eye squinted, “he does seem to be acting strangely,” she looked back up at him, “But you were saying?”
“Oh, no, that stuff doesn’t matter. I don’t know why I even talked about the gym,” he laughed at himself and touched his forehead, a rare display of considerate behavior. “How about we talk about where we’re going out tonight? Got any ideas, Jake?”
“Uh, no, not really. I’m not the kind of type. That’s why I have you,” he admitted honestly. Jake had a general distaste for all things trendy and social, but he learned long ago that he needed a foil or else he would go stir crazy. Oftentimes it was someone he did not care for.
“How ’bout you babe?”
“That’s why I’m with you, too,” she answered light heartedly, shifting playfully in her seat. Josh laughed, thinking it was a joke. Now Jake understood why such a complex girl was going for the exotic American brute—they had fun together; at least when she was not being demeaned by his callousness.
“Well,” Josh began thinking aloud. In the beginning Jake listened, occasionally sneaking a peak at Angie’s bosom, but he jerked suddenly when he felt a ticklish sensation stirring at his ankle. Much like other people when they feel an alien sensation, he tried to investigate but promptly stopped when the object pressed harder against his shin, convincing his instinctual mind that it was not anything that would bite him. Rather than look under the table to search for the source, he folded his hands in front of him and looked squarely at Angie who smiled just as pleasantly as before while Josh continued listing the pros and cons of various discos and bars.
The alien sensation continued under his pant leg as soft fibers rubbed up and down his shin, reassuring him the contact was intentional. She smirked and gave a half shrug as her socked foot tried to reach higher, straining under the jeans. Certainly better than her boyfriend, Jake understood sex and sensuality did not require intercourse. Under normal circumstances, feeling continued light pressure on his bare skin might only tickle but here, as Angie rubbed his leg from across the table in the presence of her oblivious boyfriend, the contact gave his whole body shivering goose bumps and slowly filled his penis with warm blood. He turned rigid when a second foot touched and curled around the same calf, pushing the stubborn pant leg up past the muscle so her first foot could travel even higher, reaching his kneecap.
As he became accustomed to their presence, his posture slowly relaxed and the novel tingling slowly subsided. Sensing this change, Angie changed technique and tapped her toes on his knee like they were playing a piano. They were random most of the time but occasionally broke into a sequence. He closed his eyes to concentrate and determine the pattern, but she sensed this too and withdrew both feet in favor of his other leg. But whereas she spent several minutes caressing the first, she aggressively attacked the second, efficiently pressing one foot up his shin as the other forced the pant leg higher, exposing the other knee cap. He sighed when she took her feet from this leg and brought them to the first—or so he thought at first.
She split her attention, and her legs, to give both of his the same treatment. Like the gun at a racetrack, her curling feet behind his knees signaled the start of a whole new cycle. At first both feet touched corresponding places on each leg, lazily drawing simple patterns across his tingling skin, but soon they alternated. One rubbed up while the other rubbed down, one went right while the other went left. But still this fell into a pattern and his mind, though still aroused by her attention, involuntarily grew bored, and again she changed, this time pointing her knees flat and outward so the tops of her feet slid up the inside of his thighs.
Jake dared a quick peek, spotting her small stockinged feet creeping slowly up his thighs, renewing the tingling warmth and pushing it to his throbbing cock. His legs felt her toes danced rapidly against him but his eyes saw but a fraction of this total movement through their white sheathe. Since his penis usually hanged to the left, her right foot reached the head and abruptly stopped when its owner realized what she discovered. Angie raised her brow before looking back to Josh, pretending to listen to what he was saying while her feet retreated a few inches only to recover that distance seconds later. She alternated this massage as well, careful not to let him escape the aroused condition.
The right foot continued stroking his thigh while the left approached his center, twitching its toes the closer it came. He quivered when she slid it underneath his ass, raising him ever so slightly and tickling his balls. But this maneuver required that she change her posture to something indiscreet so she shortly withdrew, grinding the ball of her foot against his balls for ten seconds more. Then just as suddenly as bore her breasts earlier, she ceased massaging and quickly spread her legs wide, forcing his thighs open.