Riders in the Storm
The rain hadn’t let up all day. It had been coming down hard since before I got out of bed that morning. That in itself would have been fine. I didn’t have to go anywhere, and was perfectly happy waiting out the storm indoors where it was snug and dry. The truly annoying thing was that the power was out.
I loved my family and was happy to be home for the summer now that my university exams were well behind me for the year, but too much proximity without any distractions or the ability to escape outside really cut into my sanity. Mom had tried to get us playing some board games, which had been about when I’d escaped to the attic.
One whole end of the attic had been fashioned into a sort of hangout nest for Brandon and I many years ago. Mainly so that our parents would have somewhere to send us when they wanted us out from underfoot. It hadn’t changed much since we’d grown up and headed off to further our educations. It was still a mess of an old mattress, some pillows and blankets, and stacks of books and comics and whatever other junk we left lying around.
It was a cozy enough place to hide out for a while during the storm. The sound of the rain drumming on the roof was more soothing than annoying, thanks to the acoustics, and I could watch it come down through the window nestled between the slanting edges of the roof.
There was enough light to basically see, but not enough to read without straining my eyes. I compromised and curled up with some nail polish to paint the extremities of my various digits.
I only had three toes on my left foot remaining when I heard the unmistakable creak of someone else climbing up the ladder. Brandon, I assumed. The ‘rents didn’t venture up here much, and if they wanted me they would have just yelled up until I answered.
“Hey, Allie,” Brandon said. “What’s happening?”
“What do you think?” I asked as he padded over, hunching slightly under the low, sloping ceiling. “Dick all, basically.”
“Yeah.” He sighed. “I’m bored out of my skull too.”
He sprawled out across the mattress, jostling me slightly in the process as my seat shifted beneath me. I paused my painting until he was all settled.
Brandon grabbed a nearby comic and spread it open in front of him. He flipped a few pages, then tossed it aside.
“Booorrred,” he announced.
“Yes, I know,” I said. “What do you want me to do about it?”
“Fine.” I put the finishing touches on my pinkie toe. “Give me your hand.”
“So I can do your nails. Duh.”
“First of all, no. Second of all, how exactly would that amuse me?”
“You have any better ideas?”
Brandon glared at me. “Not really. But still no.”
I rearranged my pillows and propped myself more comfortably against the wall. I stretched my legs out to examine my toes in the dim lighting. They looked ok, but without proper light to see by I couldn’t say for sure.
Brandon sulked and tried reading again. I wasn’t sure if it was the lighting, or if he’d simply outgrown the stash of comics in our hideout, but he didn’t last very long the second time either.
“You could grab a flashlight if you really wanted to read,” I suggested.
He shrugged. “I don’t. I just want to do, you know, something. I don’t think comics are it.”
“No. Perhaps not.”
Brandon was quiet for a moment, then, “If I let you paint my toes, promise you won’t tell anyone?”
I grinned. Big bro Brandon gonna let me pretty him up. He really was losing it. “Deal.”
Brandon pulled off his socks, and I made him sit with his feet near the window for what little bit extra light I could get.
“No girly colours,” he warned me.
I rolled my eyes. “No pink or yellow? Such a boy.”
“Yes, I am a boy, actually. I think no pink or yellow is fair. Or purple.”
“Purple’s not girly.”
“Isn’t. Dudes can wear purple. It’s, like, royalty colour. Not girly.”
Brandon considered. “Maybe some purples are ok,” he grudgingly admitted. “But still, no purple.”
“Fine. So, what, like a nice manly black? For your brooding and edgy masculinity?”
“Too bad. Trick question. Not doing black anyway.”
I pulled out a blue that I assumed wouldn’t be too objectionable. Brandon didn’t say anything as I settled in and placed his foot in my lap for easy access, so I went ahead with it.
“You have nail polish remover, right?” Brandon asked.
“Of course I do. Not chickening out already, are you?”
“Just checking, is all.”
“Uh huh. Sure.”
Naturally, Brandon spent the next little while acting like he didn’t care one way or the other what I was doing. He kept sneaking peeks at my work, however, which rather undercut his attempt at indifference.
“There,” I said. “All finished.”
Brandon wiggled his toes around, catching them at different angles. “That’s not bad,” he admitted grudgingly.
“Not too girly?”
“Enh. Still pretty girly.”
“Well now you gotta deal with it. So too bad.”
I tuzla escort pushed my brother’s feet away and got settled back in more comfortably. I pulled out my phone, but I still only had a quarter battery left and no wi-fi, with no idea when the power would be back, so I sighed and put it away again.
“Can I do your fingers?” I asked.
“Hm?” Brandon flicked his gaze toward me, then seemed to grasp what I was referring to. “Oh, hell no.”
“Why not? We can clean them off after.”
“No. Toes were one thing. They aren’t that visible. I’m not risking fingers.”
“No one’ll know. Paint ’em, wipe ’em, done. No problem.”
“I said no.”
I folded my arms and sulked on my side of our nook. Now that I had a taste of painting Brandon’s nails, the thought of getting his fingers too gnawed at me. I really wanted to do it, but obviously couldn’t without cooperation.
Getting called down for lunch was a bit of a mixed bag for me. It was something to do, which was good, but I was also halfway toward napping at the time, and I wasn’t sure that it wouldn’t have been better just to get some unneeded sleep in to pass the time.
Our meal consisted of sandwiches and our choices of slightly-too-warm beverages. It was adequate.
I kind of zoned out while eating until Mom asked me something about my nails. That was al fine and good. I showed her my hands, then even lifted one of my feet high enough that she could get a look at it. What I hadn’t counted on, or even considered, was that she’d then take a look at Brandon’s toes.
I was pretty sure it wasn’t even on purpose. Mom just happened to glance down at Brandon’s feet as her head swung back, and he happened to be sitting in such a way that his toes weren’t safely hidden in shadow. Whatever the case, Mom’s eyes narrowed as she took in the sight.
“I see Allie’s done your toes as well,” Mom said.
Brandon stopped chewing and set his sandwich down so carefully that my eyes widened in anticipation of a massive overreaction from him. He glared back at Mom.
“Yeah, so?” he said.
Mom took a few seconds, then went back to her food with the same slow deliberation as Brandon had demonstrated. I was about ready to duck under the table for cover by this point.
“It’s nice that you’re playing together,” Mom said. “You’re going to clean it off after lunch, no doubt.”
“Of course he is,” Dad said. “Just playing around, as you say.”
“I don’t see how it’s any of your business, really,” Brandon said.
Mom sat up straighter with an air of Perfect Civility about her. “You’re just being contrary now, dear. We all know it was Allie’s doing.” I got a Perfectly Civil Glance of my own. “Which would have been far more adorable had you both still been children at the time.”
“Adults can wear nail polish too,” I muttered as I slipped down in my seat in preparation for ducking under cover.
“Yes,” Mom said patiently. “And that’s fine for you. But Brandon’s a boy.”
“Ah,” said Brandon. “That explains a lot.”
Mom and Dad both turned distinctly toward him, and it was really only a toss-up as to which would Politely Chastise him first. God I hated family meals sometimes. It was all fun and food until me or my brother did The Wrong Thing. Then god help us.
“Well that was delicious,” I said loudly, patting my tummy in an exaggerated manner.
“Allie, dear, you haven’t even finished-” Mom started.
“Yup, very tasty,” I continued. “I’ll probably need to take a nap now. So sleepy after such a-“
“Allie,” Dad said. “Don’t-“
“Quite right,” Brandon agreed. “Very nice. Very filling. Off to have a nap. Good thinking, sister mine.”
As one, Brandon and I rose and took our nowhere-near-emptied glasses and plates off to the sink, presenting a united front so our parents didn’t know which of us to accost. Sibling teamwork had always been their greatest weakness.
We escaped back to our attic sanctuary and closed the trap door behind us. Not that battening the hatches would stop yells from reaching us, but it made us giggle like kids all the same.
“Boy, they did not like your painted toes,” I said as I flopped onto our hideout’s mattress.
“Hell no they didn’t,” Brandon said, sitting down next to me with a bit more care than I’d shown in my landing. “I can’t believe I forgot to put my socks back on.”
I shrugged. “Shoulda been fine still. Just a freak accident Mom even noticed.”
I waited a moment to see if he’d say anything else, then, “So, uh, should I get out the nail polish remover?”
Brandon gave me a funny look, then critically examined his toes. “Not just yet,” he said slowly.
“Not yet,” he repeated.
“Uh huh. So you like them after all.” I grinned. “‘Cause they’re so cute, right?”
Brandon rolled his eyes. “I really wish you wouldn’t use words like that.”
“No? What description should I use?”
“I don’t know. Just… it’d be nice if you wouldn’t make Mom and Dad sound like they have a point.”
I bit my lip. tuzla escort bayan “But, uh, you didn’t want to keep your toes painted anyway, right?”
“Well… I kinda do now out of spite.”
“Oh sure. That makes sense.”
Brandon flexed his toes a few more times. “Although…”
He hesitated, then shook his head. “Nevermind. Forget it.”
“Nuh uh. You were about to say I did such a great job that now you wanna keep ’em. You can’t just not say it.”
Brandon rolled his eyes. I grinned impishly at his reaction.
“Absolutely wasn’t gonna say that,” he said.
“Well, the world will never know for sure.”
“The world’s got nothing to do with it.”
Brandon went all pensive and brooding, so I ignored him and stared out the window. Nothing but rain. It was oddly hypnotizing in its constant staccato. I wiggled around to get a bit more comfortable as I let it seduce me into complacency.
“We could go run around in the rain,” I said.
It took Brandon a moment to respond. “Is that a serious suggestion?”
“I dunno. Maybe. Why not?”
“Ah, well then. I see the error of my ways now.” I scooted over to my stash of nail polish.
“What are you doing?”
I grinned evilly at my brother. “I’m gonna paint your fingernails. And they are gonna be sooo girly. Bright fucking pink.”
“And why would I let you do that?”
“‘Cause you shot down my last idea.”
“That doesn’t even begin to make sense.”
I shrugged and pulled out my bottle of bright fucking pink nail polish. Brandon rolled his eyes.
There was a brief scuffle as I tried to sit next to Brandon while he pushed me away or retreated from my reach. It got pretty stupid and giggly, without anything at all being accomplished.
“Changed my mind,” Brandon said. “Maybe prancing through the rain would be better than this.”
“That’s the spirit!”
We had to sneak down to the back door without being spotted. It had taken some further deliberation to sketch out a rough plan, let alone come to an agreement that we were actually doing this thing. Once I’d gotten the idea in my head, I wasn’t letting go of it. It was the only semi-fun thing I might get to do all day. Brandon’s toes excepted.
“We’re gonna get soaked,” Brandon said as he looked out the door.
“Duh. It’s raining,” I said.
I pulled off my shirt, then worked on my pants.
“The hell are you doing?” Brandon asked.
“The hell do you think I’m doing? You want me to go out all fully dressed and get my clothes wet too?”
“Well… no, but I don’t really want you to get naked either.”
I smacked my brother in the face with my jeans, the put my hands on my hips as I stood in just bra and panties. “Not naked, dummy. Even if it’s just you, I don’t plan on going that far.”
“Just me? What does that mean?”
“What do you think it means. You’re a boy, but you’re, like, not, too. ‘Cause you’re my brother.”
Brandon’s expression was halfway between annoyed and exasperated. “Am I s’posed to strip too?”
“You can do what you want. I’ma have dry clothes to come back to, that’s all I’m saying.”
I didn’t wait for him. I was committed already, and despite my lack of forethought and general brashness, I knew if I just stood there I’d get shy. Partial nudity wasn’t really a big deal, unless I stopped to think about it. And if Brandon decided to make it a bigger deal…
But it was fine. I got out in the rain and forgot all about my creeping doubts. I was drenched almost immediately and was very glad not to have all my clothes on, as they would have been a soggy, clingy mess.
I walked forward with my arms spread and my face uptilted. The rain hit me in a constant soft drumming no matter where I moved. It would have been the world’s best shower if only the temperature had been warmer, and if I didn’t mind the lack of privacy.
Brandon followed me, though he was slow about it. I was halfway across the yard before I turned, and he was only just stepping onto the lawn by that point. He didn’t appear quite as free in his enjoyment of the rain, though he was just as half-naked and soaked as I was.
“Thought you were gonna chicken out,” I said.
“Well I didn’t,” he said. “It’s, like, super wet out here, though.”
“Yeah. Duh.” I lifted my hands up toward the sky. “That’s the fun of it.”
Brandon sighed. “Reduced to this. Getting cold and wet for amusement.”
“Hm, you’re kinda right.” I shrugged. “Still, better than nothing.”
I twirled away, still taking enjoyment in the novelty of what I was doing. Sure it wasn’t exciting or intelligent or really much of anything, but it was a bit naughty and childish. That was something.
Brandon didn’t really want to get in the spirit of things. He followed me around, but that was about it. I needed to kickstart him somehow.
In a moment of not thinking particularly clearly, I turned and ran straight at my lethargic brother. He tilted his head in confusion, then easily side-stepped me. I skidded on the wet grass escort tuzla and tumbled to the ground. After a mental check to make sure I wasn’t hurt, I burst out laughing.
“You’re so weird sometimes,” Brandon said.
“I know. That’s ok.”
He reached down to help me up, and instead I pulled him down to the ground with me. He bumped my chest on the way down, then quickly rolled off. I didn’t mind his accidental brush against my boobies, but his reddened face was quite amusing.
“What’d you do that for?” Brandon asked.
I had to put my arm over my face to keep the rain from striking my eyes between blinks. Brandon shielded himself similarly.
“You seem a little tense,” I said.
Brandon took a few seconds to answer. “Maybe,” he said slowly. “I mean, I am out in the rain in my underwear.”
“I guess. That doesn’t really-“
“And I can see your nipples.”
I looked down at myself. My transparent and clingy bra was, indeed, failing to properly cover me. “Oh.”
“Is that all?”
“Isn’t it enough?”
“Maybe.” I took a moment to consider. “That seems like a pretty minor thing though.”
“Easy for you to say.”
“Yeah, ok then.”
I didn’t cover myself. I didn’t really care that much. I wasn’t even sure if Brandon really minded, or if he was just expecting me to be embarrassed about it.
“I’m getting kinda cold,” I said.
“Yeah. I was wondering how long that would take,” Brandon said. “You know, ’cause it’s raining and you took most of your clothes off.”
“Ok, ok, Mr. Smartypants. Are you gonna be cranky about being out here? Because I didn’t force you or anything.”
“Sure you aren’t.”
I rolled onto my side facing him. “Prove it.”
Brandon just looked at me, then casually reached out and pushed my shoulder, knocking me onto my back. I rolled toward him again, and again he shoved me right back down again. A faint smirk graced his lips at my struggle.
“Cut it out,” I said.
I lunged at him in more of a tackle, but he was so slippery I slid halfway off. He laughed and rolled over so that he was on top of me instead. I frowned and tried to worm my way out. It didn’t do any good. I was slippery too, but not enough to escape his advantage in weight and strength. Stupid boy advantages.
“What were you trying to do, exactly?” he asked.
I looked down at his chest. “I can see your nipples too, you know.”
“So what? I’m a boy.”
“So you are. A boy with pretty, pretty toes.”
Brandon frowned, then reached to my chest and pinched me on the nipple. I opened my mouth wide and indignant, more from shock than because it hurt.
I tried to pinch him right back. He swatted my hand away. I tried again, persistently. He could only use one hand to defend himself since the other was supporting him. One of my attacks got through.
“Ow, hey! I only did it gentle,” Brandon complained, rubbing his nipple where I’d tagged him.
“Yeah, but you started it. I’m allowed to retaliate harder.”
“Not that much harder.”
I jabbed my hand toward him again, and this time he pinned my wrist to the ground. He shifted his weight and pinned my other wrist too before I could try again.
My heart beat a little faster at being firmly held down like that while Brandon hovered just above me. It was a confusing response. He was just my stupid brother after all. Still, we were both half-naked and thoroughly soaked. I could kind of understand where my body’s confusion stemmed from.
“Alright, you win,” I said. “Let me up.”
“Hm…” Brandon considered my request. “Nah.”
“What do you mean ‘nah?'”
“What’s in it for me?”
I squirmed and wiggled in attempt to free myself. It didn’t help. And of course my stupid body got more and more excited the harder I struggled without breaking free. It really wasn’t grasping the situation particularly well. This was brother wrestling, not sexy boy wrestling. Big difference.
“Lemme up you jerk!”
Brandon smirked. He was enjoying himself now. At least I’d gotten through to him in that sense, if only accidentally. “Don’t think so.”
I thrashed some more, then pulled my legs up toward my chest. He hadn’t pinned them down. I got my feet in the general area of his tummy and pushed them out together. That got Brandon off of me, at least for the moment.
He laughed as he fell away. I pounced as soon as I got my knees under me. This time, I was on top. He’d have an easier time escaping than I had, given that he still outmassed me. He didn’t seem to want to fight all the hard at first.
“Now I got you,” I said. “What ya gonna do about it?”
Brandon shrugged. “I kinda dig this, actually.”
“Oh god.” I sat up, still straddling his tummy, but not holding him down or dangling my boobs in his face quite so much. “Is that how you’re gonna play this?”
“I mean, I guess.”
And yet, I wasn’t as disgusted as I tried to act. Assuming he was telling the truth and not just messing with me, he probably wasn’t feeling anything too dissimilar to what I had been moments ago.