By Mavis Applewater
Disclaimers: The characters, story is the sole possession of the author and may not be posted, reproduced or sold without the author’s permission. So there! If for any reason real or imagined you are uncomfortable with graphic descriptions of two consenting adult women in a loving sexual relationships do not read this story or anything else I have ever written. If for any reason it is illegal for you to view this material then go away and don’t come back until it is no longer a crime.
A very special thank you goes out to my beta reader Mary.
As always this is for Heather.
Adelaide Anderson smirked with satisfaction as she watched the beads of sweat forming on Rufus Danner’s brow. She had him and she knew it. The other players had already dropped out of the heated hand of five-card draw and now it was just the two of them left. The old bugger was out of cash and unwilling to fold. She didn’t understand why he couldn’t just accept defeat. Perhaps it was because she was nothing more than a saloon girl or maybe the old miner’s hand was really that good?
“Come on Danner,” She taunted him as she ran her fingers across the back of her cards. She couldn’t help feeling slightly giddy as she looked down at the pot, which was over six hundred dollars. The money would be added to her already growing nest egg, which would be her ticket out of this life. She just had to get the old miner to either meet her bid or fold either way she was walking away with a huge pot. “Put up or fold,” She added confidently as he grunted at her with disgust.
“Danner we can’t back you she’ already cleaned us out,” Robert Stinson urged him on.
“I ain’t folding for a broad,” Danner spat back angrily.
“Then you need to come up with another hundred dollars,” Adelaide taunted him as she watched the sweat on his brow turn from a trickle into a downpour. “So unless you can match my bid fold up so we can call it a night.”
Danner’s jaw clenched as he began to grind his gritty yellow teeth. Adelaide’s eyes widened fearfully as he reached into his ratty vest. She was fearful that the cranky old miner was about to pull a gun on her. She knew that very few folks in the dingy mining town would do anything to stop him. She was, after all, nothing more that a dancer in the saloon, which was nothing more than a polite term to describe her true profession. She blew out a terse breath when the man yanked out a folded slip of paper and slapped it down onto the table. “Pearl Diamond,” He spat out as he slapped the paper down into the pile of cash that was lying in the middle of the table.
“Pearl Diamond?” She asked in confusion as she tried to understand what the old coot was offering. ‘Could be his claim, or jewels, or a fine horse or anything,’ She pondered the possibilities as she watched the other players look on with horror.
“Worth a hell of a lot more than a hundred bucks,” Danner sneered.
“Danner you can’t,” Mills cautioned him.
“I ain’t worried,” Danner snickered as he offered the other man a peek at his cards. When Mills’ released a gasp Adelaide worried just what she had gotten herself into?
“Fine,” Adelaide accepted the grungy man’s offer suddenly feeling a lot less confident. “Now show me what you got,” She sneered as she nervously fingered her own cards.
She felt sick as Danner sucked his teeth and placed his hand down onto the rickety table. He smiled triumphantly cackling loud enough to be heard over the din of the saloon. Her face screwed up as she studied his hand that was filled with three tens and two fives. His cackling grew louder as he reached across to claim the pot.
“Not so fast,” She snickered as she grabbed him by the wrist.
“Huh?” Danner stammered in shock as she laid out her cards on the table. His jaw dropped assaulting her with his rancid breath as she revealed her own full house.
“Queens over jacks a winner every time,” She purred. Ladies over jacks was a winner almost every time it was one of the few lessons in life her less than saintly mother had shared with her. That and most men will bet almost anything to avoid losing to a woman.
It gave the brunette some small degree of satisfaction the way Danner looked as if he was going to swallow his teeth as she wiped the money from the table. “So what is Pearl Diamond?” She asked as she inspected what appeared to be a claim ticket.
“Arrives tomorrow on the afternoon coach,” Danner snarled as he stood knocking over his chair in the process. “Just give the driver that,” Danner spat out before he stormed out followed by the other players Adelaide had just cleaned out.
“I just love surprises,” She muttered as she tucked the ticket and the rest of her winnings into her cleavage. She quickly made her own departure from the barroom, knowing that others had witnessed her good fortune. Adelaide wasn’t in the mood to have to defend her body and booty.
Adelaide awoke late in the day, as was her habit. She worked nights and the morning sun was not her friend. “Hey Molly,” She greeted one of the girls that made the Shinning Star Hotel & Saloon her home.
“Heard you cleaned up last night,” Molly grumbled with a tired look in her eyes.
“I did okay,” Adelaide lied. She wanted to boast but that would only bring her trouble. She and the other girls may be close as sisters at times, but she wasn’t foolish enough to reveal any good fortunes.
“Good enough to go to bed alone,” Molly grumbled.
“Yeah well you know the boys they never think a woman can play cards,” Adelaide hedged as she made her way down the staircase that led away from the rooms.
“Dumb Asses,” Molly snorted with pleasure.
Adelaide passed on joining Molly for breakfast knowing that the blonde and some of her other co-workers would hit her up for a loan. Adelaide wasn’t a stingy woman; she just understood how things were. The had come west for different reasons, running away from family, looking for fortune that the new frontier promised and a thousand other reasons. Work was limited and most of them quickly learned that there was only one profession open to them. Some of them had already understood that and chose to come out this way seeing the opportunity of the mining camps and forts as easy money. The truth was the money was never easy. Some girls got lucky and landed a man who would marry them. In the early days they were treated with respect, since they were the only women around. Then when respectable women and families joined their husbands the soiled doves or fallen women were cast back into the roles society felt they deserved.
Adelaide had been lucky, staying away from the cribs of poverty row. Of course the run down shanty town was filled with women past their prime and women of color. She had failed to find employment in one of the finer bordellos, but the saloon was better than her other options. She had to dance in the show almost every night that paid her a meager salary, which barely covered her rent. The rest of the evening was up to her; she could make a date, which was a polite way to say a man would pay her to go out to one of the tents located behind the saloon. If she was lucky the man would pass out in a drunken stupor and she wouldn’t need to have sex with him and she could pick his pockets. Most nights she could lure some unsuspecting miner into a friendly game of cards and make some easy money without having to drop her bloomers.
Her first stop that day was the bank where she was building a nice little nest egg. Some day she hoped to earn enough money to head even further west and maybe buy a nice little place in San Francisco or somewhere else where the weather and society was a little more inviting. She was smart to keep her money in the bank, since she knew a little something about the owner that would prove to be very embarrassing to his wife and children. Knowledge was a good thing and it insured that this man wouldn’t even think about swindling her.
After she deposited most of her winnings from the previous evening she made her way downtown, careful to avoid the finer ladies who would sneer at her with disgust. The men were still gentlemen towards her and the rest of the girls. This was probably because there were still so few females in the area.
Adelaide made her self comfortable as she awaited the arrival of the afternoon stagecoach. She fidgeted as she pondered the possibilities of what the treasure was she was
claiming. Once the coach arrived, Adelaide waited patiently as the driver,
“Adie,” The coachman greeted her with a knowing smile as he pushed his hat back. “Not leaving are you?”
“Not yet,” Adelaide laughed at the tall man who was a very good customer. “I am here to pick up a package,” She explained as she handed the Max the slip of paper. She had looked it over and over and still hadn’t a clue as to what it been for.
“Package?” Max responded with concern as he took the paper. “Oh? Uhm it’s right over there,” He explained with confusion as he pointed towards the blonde.
“She has my package?” Adelaide asked as they approached the small blonde.
“Nope,” Max chuckled. “She is the package.”
“What?” Adelaide hotly shouted out.
“This here is an order for a mail order bride,” Max laughed.
“Danner is a dead man,” She hissed as she glared at the blonde who was still looking around. “Pearl Diamond?” She called out. She watched in horror as the blonde turned to her and looked at her with a pair of sparkling blue eyes that just melted Adelaide’s heart.
“Yes Ma’am,” The blonde responded with enthusiasm.
“Sign here,” Max laughed as he handed the still stunned Adelaide a slip of paper. “What did Danner do?” He asked as Adelaide bitterly scrawled her name on the paper.
“I won her,” Adelaide groused as she accepted a receipt for her unusual shipment. “Bastard bet her, only he didn’t tell me what Pearl Diamond was; only it was worth more than his stake.”
“Don’t worry he’ll buy her back,” Max laughed as he climbed back up onto the stagecoach.
“With what?” She fumed. “I cleaned him out. That old codger won’t have nearly enough money to pay me back for at least another month. What am I supposed to do with her?”
“You’ll think of something Adie you always do,” He responded before snapping the reins and driving off.
Adelaide was fuming as the blonde kept looking at her nervously. “Did Mr. Danner send you to meet me Ma’am?” The blonde finally asked.
“You could say that,” Adelaide hissed. “Come on,” She barked as she spun around and headed back towards the saloon.
Adelaide cursed bitterly as she stomped up the streets with a very confused woman trailing behind her. “Sit,” She barked as she stormed into the saloon. The blonde lingered in the doorway for a moment before an icy glare from Adelaide prompted her to hurry up and come in. The blonde was shaking slightly as she placed her suitcase down on the floor and took a seat at one of the empty tables.
It was far too early in the day for the saloon to be doing any real business. There was just a few of the working girls milling about. Frank was behind the bar tending to the two older drunken gentlemen perched at his bar.
The girl continued to fidget as Adelaide paced nervously. “What do we have here?” Big Alice the owner and Adelaide’s boss asked before she slammed back a shot of whiskey and joined them with a bottle and a couple of glasses. Big Alice was pushing sixty and out weighed most of the men in town. She was also one hell of a businesswoman who treated her girls better than most madams did.
“Is Mr. Danner meeting me here?” The blonde finally squeaked out.
“Mr. Danner?” Alice asked as she looked up at Adelaide with a blood shot gaze.
“Big Alice Manning this is Pearl Diamond,” Adelaide finally sputtered out before slumping down in a chair next to the confused blonde. “That is your name isn’t it?”
“Yes ma’am,” Pearl stammered with confusion.
“Pearl Diamond?” Alice echoed with a snicker that made Adelaide’s skin crawl. “Isn’t that the booty you won last night?”
“Yes,” Adelaide responded with a hiss. “I’m going to skin that old bastard alive.”
“Could someone explain to me just what is going on?” Pearl pleaded. “Where is Mr. Danner? Did he have some business to attend to?”
“Business?” Alice barked out with a hearty laugh. “That filthy old miner is probably sleeping off the whisky he drank last night.”
“Oh dear,” Pearl sighed. “I should have known. The lady at Maidens assured me he was a nice young business man.”
“He’s ain’t nice, he ain’t young, and he’s a grubby miner who is lucky if he clears thirty bucks a month, unless of course he steals something,” Adelaide explained in a weary tone. “Last night he put you up to cover his stake in a card game.”
“I can only assume by his absence that he lost,” Pearl wearily inquired. Adelaide could only nod in response horrified by the entire situation. “And who is to be my new husband?”
“Me,” Adelaide reluctantly responded as Pearl nodded thoughtfully.
“I see,” Pearl dryly retorted as she folded her hands neatly on the table. “And just how much was I worth?”
“A hundred dollars I ain’t ever going to see again,” Adelaide grumbled bitterly. “Now what am I supposed to do with you?”
“Would it be rude of me as to inquire as to what your name is?” Pearl asked in a surprisingly polite voice.
“Adelaide Adams,” The weary brunette answered quietly as she looked over at her employer for help.
“Cut your losses,” Big Alice informed her directly. “Sell her back to him or kick her out.”
Adelaide looked over at Pearl whose face had turned ashen. She couldn’t do it; she couldn’t give Danner the satisfaction or subject the poor girl to a life as his bride. “I don’t suppose you have a way of supporting yourself?” She grumbled as she felt a sudden rush of sadness stabbing at her.
“No,” Pearl sighed deeply. “It took all the courage I had to agree to this arrangement. I have nothing and no one. I don’t even have the money to go back east. I don’t suppose there any positions available here?”
Adelaide didn’t like the wicked gleam in Alice’s eyes as she looked the young blonde up and down. “No,” Adelaide shouted out defensively surprising everyone in the barroom. For some unknown reason she just couldn’t allow the girl to work in the saloon.
“You could sell her to one of the houses in town,” Alice offered with a shrug as if Pearl wasn’t sitting right across from her. “A virgin auction always brings in a big purse.”
“Alice?” Adelaide hissed with disgust.
“I’m just saying,” Alice tried to explain.
“I’m not a,” The blonde stammered with a blush.
“Really?” Adelaide asked with surprise.
“I am a widow,” Pearl curtly responded never raising her eyes.
“I’m sorry,” Adelaide offered sincerely.
“So am I,” Pearl tearfully responded.
“Well just so you know,” Adelaide began not knowing what to say to her young charge. “One thing you can always count on with a virgin auction is the prize has been around the block more times than Big Alice.”
“Ain’t that the truth,” Alice laughed heartily.
The three women fell into an uncomfortable silence as Alice slammed back another shot and Pearl began to sniffle. The sounds the younger woman was trying to muffle broke Adelaide’s heart. She briefly considered turning the blonde out onto the streets. She took one look at her soft, golden hair, and sad face and she knew she could never do it. She snatched one of the shot glasses up and poured a healthy shot. The whiskey burned her throat as she slammed the glass down onto the table. “Damn it all to hell,” She barked out as Alice laughed and Pearl looked up at her with a shocked expression.
“Looks like you got yourself a bunkmate,” Alice laughed as Adelaide suddenly stood.
“Bill me for her meals,” Adelaide muttered as she grabbed Pearl’s suitcase. “Come on,” She added as she nodded for Pearl to follow her.
She was embarrassed when she escorted Pearl into her room. It was a very small space with a nightstand that only had a basin and pitcher placed on top, a small bureau that contained her meager belongings, and one very small bed that she would have to share with the blonde. “It isn’t much,” She mumbled shyly as she watched Pearl look around the cramped space. “We’ll have to share,” She added as she placed the light suitcase on the bed. “Don’t worry I don’t bring any of the boys back here.”
“Thank you,” Pearl sniffled as she stood in the middle of the room, her eyes cast down and her tiny hands folded tightly in front of her.
“Why on earth are you thanking me?” Adelaide sighed deeply.
“For not turning me out into the streets,” Pearl began in a heartbreaking voice as her tear filled blue eyes gazed up at Adelaide. “For not selling me. I promise I’ll find someway to pay you back.”
“Well,” Adelaide stammered uncomfortable with Pearl’s gratitude. “Maybe you could wash dishes or do something in the kitchen.”
“What do you do here?” Pearl’s voice cracked as she spoke. “Besides . . .”
“You mean besides taking the boys out back for a little fun?” Adelaide coldly began. “I dance in the show. And I play cards when I can so I don’t have to go out to the tents with the men.”
“You’re a dancer?” Pearl asked in an excited tone.
“It isn’t really dancing,” Adelaide grumbled. “More like shaking my goods and working for a couple extra coins. Mostly I try to win money playing cards. I only have another year or so and then I’ll have enough to get out of here. Buy a little place of my own.”
“I had heard that women often find a nice man to marry,” Pearl said hopefully still not moving.
“Sometimes,” Adelaide sighed heavily not happy with the idea that this young woman would sell herself so short. “Mostly they don’t. Most drink themselves to death waiting for some prince charming. Not me,” Adelaide asserted knowing that a man to rescue her was never what she had dreamed of. Adelaide briefly pondered what the sweet, innocent Pearl would think if she knew the real reason Adelaide wasn’t looking for a man.
For now she kept that bit of information close to the vest. Just as her momma taught her with cards, Adelaide learned that it was best to do that with more than a winning hand. “So is your name really Pearl Diamond?” Adelaide asked curious about the young woman standing before her. Pearl gave her a curious glance. “It’s just that it sounds like some of the stage names the gals use.”
“It must,” Pearl responded with the most charming smile. “Diamond was my first husband’s last name. Wylie was a good man for the most part. He just wasn’t terribly bright or faithful.”
“I’m sorry to hear that,” Adelaide said as she sat down on the bed. She patted the space next to her inviting the younger woman to sit down. Pearl pushed the suitcase aside.
“He wasn’t a bad man,” Pearl sighed, her face taking on a familiar look she had seen many times before. It was a look that said at least he didn’t beat me. “My first name is actually Peninah but no one ever called me that. Momma and Pa always called me Pearl. They passed on three years ago.”
“And you married Wylie,” Adelaide concluded.
“Didn’t have much of a choice,” Pearl confessed. “He got himself shot trying to steal some chickens from old man Roger’s farm in broad daylight. Like I said he wasn’t terribly bright.”
“Well Pearl you are welcome to stay with me until you get back on your feet,” Adelaide offered. “For now why don’t we head downstairs and see what Frieda has cooking.”
“Thank you Miss Adams,” Pearl graciously accepted. “I promise I will pay you back for everything.”
“Let’s not worry about that just yet,” Adelaide offered as she placed a comforting hand on the smaller woman’s shoulder. “And it is Adelaide or Adie.”
“Thank you Adelaide,” Pearl said with a smile that once again warmed Adelaide’s heart. The brunette felt a rush of heat sweep through her body. She snatched her hand away quickly before bringing Pearl downstairs for some dinner.
That evening Pearl was staring at her with a look of pure astonishment. “What?” Adelaide asked as she adjusted the frilly lace of her satin dance dress.
“It is just so colorful,” Pearl explained as she continued to gape at the dancer.
“I know,” Adelaide grumbled as she looked down at the red and black dress, which left very little to the imagination.
“That isn’t what I meant,” Pearl slowly began to explain. “Earlier today I thought that you were beautiful, but in that you are simply stunning.”
“Thank you,” Adelaide muttered in embarrassment as she blushed slightly. “I’m going to lock the door. I have my key. If anyone tries to get in besides me just scream your head off, Frankie or Buck will be up here lickity split.”
“Those big men who work downstairs?” Pearl asked.
“Yeah, Big Alice keeps them around to make certain none of the boys get out of hand,” Adelaide explained. “Are you going to be alright?”
“I will be just fine Adelaide,” Pearl reassured her. “I am so tired from my trip I am going right to bed. Just nudge me when you get in and I’ll put a blanket on the floor.”
“Don’t be silly,” Adelaide chastised her. “I know it isn’t much but we should be able to squeeze in there,” She felt hot suddenly at the prospect of sharing the tiny bed with the attractive blonde. “Do me a favor,” She added as she lifted her skirt and removed the small derringer that was strapped to her thigh. She heard a small gasp. She was surprised to turn and find Pearl blushing. “Put this under the pillow or the bed just in case.”
Adelaide was off her game that night in more ways than one. She missed steps in the routine that no one except the other girls noticed. It wasn’t as if the men who were hooting and hollering were actually there to see them dance. Later she couldn’t focus on cards, since she was far too preoccupied watching to see who went upstairs and which way they headed. Each time she saw anyone heading in the direction of her room she would fold her hand and rush upstairs to check on Pearl. Each time she felt like a complete jackass when she found the door still locked.
She had lost money that night something that rarely happened to her. She thought about letting one of the young bucks take her out back, and for some strange reason she just couldn’t bring herself to do it. She finally gave up around midnight and headed up to her room. She tip-toed carefully into the room.
She lit the oil lamp on the dresser. Adelaide swallowed hard when she spied the slumbering blonde sprawled across her bed. Adelaide Adams had long ago accepted the fact that she preferred the company of women to men. Finding companions proved difficult at times, but not always. At the times she would encounter a kindred spirit each of them simply gave whatever they could offer understanding that their time together would be brief.
Now she was expected to share a very small bed with a woman she had been drawn to the first moment she had seen her step off of the stagecoach. Pearl had kicked the blankets off of the bed and her nightshirt had ridden up exposing her creamy white thighs and the barest hint of her hips. Adelaide stole a moment in order to drink in the smaller woman’s beauty. With a heavy sigh she pulled the blanket back up and covered Pearl’s body. She was tempted to lean in and claim her parted lips.
Gathering up her strength she simply brushed back her long, blonde hair from her brow and went about getting ready for bed. “Damn,” She whispered as she noticed a small tear in her dress. She would deal with it in the morning not certain as to how she would mend the dress since she was lacking when it came to sewing. She tossed the dress aside knowing that she would end up begging Frieda to do it.
She grimaced as she locked the door, extinguished the lamp and put on a fresh pair of bloomers and a chemise. Normally since even in the dead of winter the heat at night was unbearable Adelaide would simply sleep naked. After all no one was going to see her and given her profession shyness wasn’t a part of her make up.
Adelaide climbed into bed and tried not to touch Pearl’s warm, inviting body. Due to the cramped space and the knowledge that the blonde wasn’t wearing anything underneath her nightshirt was driving Adelaide crazy as she hung off of the bed. Frustrated beyond words she tried to gather up the blanket and sleep on the floor. Just as she was climbing out of bed a tiny hand flew out and pulled her back down. “Oof,” She exclaimed as she landed next to Pearl’s body.
“You’re not sleeping on the floor,” The sleepy blonde chastised her as she wrapped Adelaide’s arm around her waist. “If you can’t get comfortable I’ll sleep on the floor,” Pearl yawned as Adelaide curled up behind her.
“No I’m fine,” Adelaide lied as she spooned the smaller woman from behind. The scent of Pearl’s body filled her senses as the blonde nestled closer to her. She drank in Pearl’s delicate aroma as her fingers spread across the blonde’s waist.
The feel of Pearl’s stomach fluttering beneath her touch mixed with the whiskey she had drunk earlier in the night was clouding her judgment. The hand that was resting on Pearl’s stomach began to move in a slow circular pattern as her free hand somehow decided to stroke the blonde’s long, golden locks.
The sound of Pearl sighing contently bolstered her courage as her hand drifted along the buttons of the blonde’s nightshirt. Knowing that Pearl was awake she nuzzled the blonde’s neck and drank in more of her scent. Pearl sighed deeply once again as Adelaide’s lips grazed lightly across her neck while she gently opened the top two buttons of the soft nightshirt. She froze for a moment and awaited Pearl’s reaction.
When the smaller woman’s body snuggled closer to her own she kissed her soft supple neck once again. When she felt Pearl relax into her embrace her fingers gently caressed the edge of her nightshirt. Pearl still didn’t retreat from Adelaide’s advances instead she turned so that she was lying on her back looking up at the brunette with the sweetest smile.
Encouraged by the younger woman’s actions Adelaide leaned down and brushed her lips gently against Pearl’s. Sensing no resistance she kissed her again, this time she felt Pearl’s lips responding to her kiss. Spurred on by the soft burning of her lips she kissed the smaller woman once again and was greeted by the feel of Pearl’s lips moving against her own. She deepened the kiss as she ran her tongue along the blonde’s bottom lip. She moaned deeply when she felt Pearl’s mouth parting. She accepted the invitation and began a sweet exploration of the warmth that awaited her. She pressed her body closer as she felt Pearl’s tongue greeting her own.
She felt the smaller woman moaning into her mouth when she cupped her breast. The kisses grew with intensity as Adelaide’s fingers slipped beneath the soft cotton of the blonde’s nightshirt. She could feel her body throb with desire, as her fingers were greeted by the soft flesh and tiny bud awaiting her touch.
She felt the bud rising up to greet her touch as she kissed the blonde passionately. She felt Pearl’s body arch beneath her. Adelaide’s undergarments were damp with desire as their kisses lingered and she teased the small rose-colored bud with her fingers.
Pearl pulled away suddenly. Adelaide looked down upon the young woman whose face was flushed with desire. Understanding that the moment was over, her hand retreated from the warm confines of Pearl’s nightgown, and each of them turned so that Adelaide was once again spooning the smaller woman from behind.
It was a fitful night for the dancer as her body hummed with unexplored passion. Finally she managed to fall asleep. She awoke briefly in the early morning to find that her hands had not been idle during the night. Instead they had managed to lift Pearl’s nightgown and were caressing the blonde’s bare stomach. Adelaide swallowed hard as she drank in the sight of Pearl’s half naked body pressing against her. Reluctantly she removed her hands from the smaller woman’s body and pulled the nightgown back down to a respectable level. With Peal nestled in her arms she went back to sleep.
She was alone when she awoke hours later. Her body still burning from the night before yet the bed felt strangely cold due to Pearl’s absence. She was certain that the younger woman had run off in horror after what had happened the night before. She blinked in surprise when she spied her black and red dress hanging in the window.
She crawled out of bed and looked at the neatly pressed and neatly stitched garment just hanging there. Adding to her surprise was Pearl entering her room with a tray of food. “I was hoping you would be awake finally,” The blonde greeted her warmly as she placed the tray down on the dresser.
“I worked all night,” Adelaide explained with a shrug as she looked over at her companion who seemed unfazed by the kisses they had shared the night before. “Did you do this?”
“Yes,” Pearl offered casually. “I have to do something around here. Alice agreed to give me a job in the kitchen. Not much money but she is giving us a break on our meals.”
“That should help out,” Adelaide agreed as she wondered whether or not she should mention what had happened the night before. Pearl seemed quite at ease still the brunette sensed that she didn’t want to discuss it. “This is amazing,” She complimented Pearl. “I can’t even see where it was torn.”
So it began. Pearl worked in the kitchen helping out Frieda. She took care of Adelaide’s wardrobe. Not only did she mend it, wash it, and iron it, but quite often she would make her a whole new outfit or dress. Her work was so impressive that the other girls hired the blonde as their seamstress. Adelaide and Pearl fell into a strange yet blissful domestic relationship. The brunette knew that she should just release the young woman from any obligations she felt and allow her to rent her own room and go on her way. To her credit she did suggest it. Pearl would simply shrug and ignore the suggestion.
The other girls tried to convince Pearl that she would make more money dancing. Each time the suggestion would arise Adelaide would throw a fit. For some strange reason since the moment they met, the brunette felt an overwhelming need to look out for the younger woman, even though Pearl proved not to as innocent or naïve as she looked. Life with Wylie Diamond had not been easy on her.
One evening just as Pearl was finishing up in the kitchen and getting ready to retreat to their room the subject came up again. “You said no and I accept that,” Pearl agreed with a heavy sigh that informed Adelaide that conversation was far from over. She followed the blonde into the barroom.
“You don’t need to get into this kind of life,” Adelaide cautioned her.
“But it is alright for you do it?” Pearl flared in response.
Adelaide was stunned at how bitter Pearl sounded. “If you start it is hard to get out,” Adelaide tried to reason with her. “And for your information all I do after I dance is play cards.”
It was the truth. After Pearl’s arrival Adelaide just couldn’t bring her self to head out back to the tents. Of course it only made their finances tighter, which made Pearl feel like she was holding Adelaide back. The brunette gently clasped Pearl by the shoulders. “If this is about money I have my savings,” She tried to explain. “And thanks to a former customer I’ve made some good investments. It is just going to take a little longer until I can afford that little plot of land.”
“But if I could help more then you wouldn’t have to wait,” Pearl tried to reason with her.
“You can do whatever you want,” Adelaide sighed with desperation. “I just don’t think you should. I don’t own you Pearl.”
“Don’t you?” Pearl whispered softly.
“If this is about that stupid card game then just forget it,” Adelaide reassured her as her heart sank. She didn’t want Pearl to leave her, but she didn’t want to hold her back either. Despite the domestic bliss they shared Adelaide was painfully aware of the fact that they would never be more than friends. Even though they slept curled up together they never kissed again and they never talked about it. Although based on the condition she found Pearl’s nightshirt most mornings her hands were not at rest during the night. They didn’t discuss this little matter either.
It was slowly driving Adelaide insane. One night Pearl had been concerned about how rowdy the crowd was and she gave Adelaide the derringer back. What was so painful for Adelaide was that Pearl not only returned the gun she insisted upon re-strapping it to the brunette’s thigh. She would never forget the feel of Pearl’s fingers brushing along the inside of her thigh or the way they lingered there. Adelaide was surprised that she hadn’t burst into flames right there and then.
“So the card game didn’t mean anything,” Adelaide heard snickered from behind. She growled with disgust as she heard him sucking on his teeth. They turned to find Rufus Danner scratching his potbelly and flashing his yellow teeth at them. “I’m damn glad to hear that. Cause I’ve come to claim my bride,” He boasted.
“Danner you pig,” Adelaide snarled as she felt Pearl’s hand coming to rest on her arm.
“Remind me to thank you for being such a good card player,” Pearl exclaimed as her crystal blue eyes widened in horror. Adelaide couldn’t help but chuckle at the comment.
“Anytime Darling anytime,” She snickered. “What do you want Danner?”
“I want my bride,” He bellowed. “I done paid good money for a mail order bride and I’ve come to get her.”
“Do you have the hundred dollars?” Adelaide asked sternly as she felt Pearl’s grip tightening on her arm.
“No,” He shrugged. “But she’s of no use to you. I need someone to cook, clean and darn my socks and I paid a lot more than a hundred dollars for her.”
“I don’t even want to know where you got the money from,” Adelaide sneered. “Danner you lost her in front of a bar full of witnesses. She does all those things for me now. And I have to tell you it is a pretty sweet deal. Everyone should have a wife.”
A few patrons had shuffled in and were watching the scene unfold. They couldn’t help chuckling at Adelaide’s bravado. “Yeah well you can’t keep her,” Danner reasoned. “Cause I paid for all of that and what she can do for me that she don’t do for you.”
“That’s true,” Adelaide agreed as her stomach clenched while her mind drifted to the things she wanted Pearl to do for her. “But I won her fair and square.”
“No you didn’t,” Danner spat back.
The sounds of pistols being cocked filled the room. Briar’s Creek may be just a backwater-mining town without a sheriff, but you still do not accuse someone of cheating at cards when the half the town saw you lose fairly. “You calling me a liar?” She challenged the grubby little man.
“No,” He quickly retreated. “I’m just saying that you can’t own her. You’re a woman.”
“Yes I am,” She smirked. “A woman who kicked your sorry ass at cards and collected her winnings. Pearl paid off her debt to me and is a free woman,” She knew she was about to risk not having Pearl in her life, but it was the right thing to do.
“Meaning?” Danner asked in confusion.
“Meaning you grubby little pig,” She spat out. “You don’t own her and neither do I. Frankie would you show this man the door?”
Frankie had been lurking behind the pudgy man just in case he got out of hand. “My pleasure,” Frankie, who was built like a log cabin, happily responded before lifting the smaller man up by his shirt collar and tossing him out into the streets.
“The show’s over folks,” Big Alice shouted out from her perch on the staircase.
“I have to get ready for work,” Adelaide grunted as she headed towards the staircase. She was stunned when Pearl yanked her back.
“Take the night off,” Pearl asserted as Adelaide looked at her with surprise. “We need to talk.”
Adelaide looked up to Big Alice for help. “You got the night off,” Alice snickered. “And listen to the girl. Frankly I think this little chat is long over due.”
Adelaide was a mass of confusion as they entered their room. She suddenly thought it was strange that since the first moment she had brought Pearl there she had no longer considered it just her room, but their room. “What do we need to talk about?” She gruffly addressed Pearl who was pacing about the tiny room. Adelaide was forced to sit down on the bed in order to avoid having the smaller woman bump into her.
“How much longer?” Pearl finally blurted out, her face was flushed and her eyes filled with anger.
“How much longer what?” Adelaide asked in bewilderment.
“Until you leave?” Pearl clarified as she moved to the edge of the bed so that she was towering over the stunned brunette.
“Not much longer,” Adelaide sadly confessed. “A year maybe.”
“Do you know why Danner wants me?” Pearl asked in a heated tone.
“Yeah I do,” Adelaide sneered with disgust.
“It isn’t only my wifely duties he is interested in,” Pearl began to explain in a much calmer tone. “My husband bought a small mine just north of here. The real reason I allowed myself to be sold as a mail order bride was so that I can claim it. I found out just before I left that the mine is pretty much worthless.”
“But Danner doesn’t know that,” Adelaide chuckled. “So why didn’t you sell it and get the hell out of here?” She asked suddenly.
“I did sell it,” Pearl blew out. “I got about three hundred dollars for it, which of course is a lot less than Wylie paid for it. Told you he wasn’t bright.”
“Yeah but a free three hundred dollar piece of property and a wife is worth a lot to Danner,” Adelaide theorized. “What I don’t understand is why you stayed? You could have skipped out of town or paid me off and gone home or somewhere else to start over. Why did you stay?”
Adelaide felt like crying as Pearl knelt before her. “Because you won me,” Pearl choked out.
“I didn’t win you,” Adelaide argued. “I only tried to help you. Pearl you don’t owe me anything.”
“Yes I do,” Pearl sobbed as her hands came to rest on Adelaide’s thighs. “You won me.”
“It was just a card game,” Adelaide stammered as she fought against the urge to reach out to this woman who had stolen her heart.
“I’m not taking about a card game,” Pearl sniffed as she looked up with pleading eyes. “You won my heart. The first moment I looked at you I found something I didn’t even know was missing. The first time you kissed me you won my heart. When you touch me in your sleep you set me free. I love you.”
Adelaide sat there in stunned silence as her heart was ready to burst with happiness. “I stayed because I can’t be away from you,” Pearl continued.
Adelaide wanted to say so much yet the words died on her lips. Instead she reached out and cupped Pearl’s face in her hands and drew her closer. She allowed the fiery kiss she placed on Pearl’s trembling lips to speak for her. She moaned into the warmth of the blonde’s mouth as she deepened the kiss.
Adelaide’s body was quivering as she pulled Pearl up onto her lap. Adelaide’s hands roamed down the smaller woman’s body as their tongues wrapped around one another. “I didn’t know,” Adelaide gasped as the kiss came to an end. “I thought you only kissed me and allowed me to grope you at night because you felt obligated.”
“Obligated?” Pearl panted as she pushed Adelaide back down onto the bed. “No, for the first time in my life I felt desire. I just didn’t know what to do. I pulled away from you that first night because I was afraid. I never felt anything like this before,” Pearl continued as her hands busied themselves with the tiny buttons on Adelaide’s dress.
Adelaide drew the smaller woman in for another kiss. The simple promising kiss ignited her senses as each of them began to fumble with the other’s clothing. “I love you,” Adelaide confessed as they struggled to remove each other’s cumbersome clothing. “And I didn’t win you. You were the one who won my heart,” Adelaide professed as she began to lower her lover’s undergarments.
“Adelaide,” Pearl gasped as she slipped the brunette’s chemise down her shoulders while the brunette kissed her neck.
Pearl’s hand was shaking as she reached up towards Adelaide’s bare breast. The brunette captured her trembling hand and kissed the back before turning it over and kissing the palm. Then she gently placed her lover’s hand on one of her breasts. She felt her heart pounding as Pearl gently caressed her breast. “Is this what I do to you in my sleep?” Adelaide whimpered as she pressed her breast deeper into her lover’s hand.
“Yes,” Pearl panted in response as she cupped the brunette’s other breast.
Adelaide rocked her body closer pressing her now erect nipples against her lover’s rough hands. She gazed down at her half naked lover as Pearl seemed mesmerized with her bosom. “Do you like it when I touch you?” She moaned as she straddled the smaller woman’s hips.
“Yes,” Pearl hissed as she began to pinch and tease Adelaide’s nipples.
The brunette felt Pearl’s body wriggling beneath her as she parted her thighs with her knee. “Teach me,” Pearl pleaded as her body arched against Adelaide’s thigh. The brunette could feel her desire through her bloomers as they slowly swayed against one another. Adelaide was struggling to breathe as Pearl’s hips matched her urgent rhythm.
“Sweet Jesus you feel so good,” She gasped before she reclaimed the blonde’s soft lips. The kiss electrified her entire body as they clung to one another. She had never felt an aching need like this before. Unable to control her desire she slipped her hands beneath Pearl’s body and cupped her firm cheeks.
Pearl squeaked with pleasure as Adelaide began to kiss her way down her neck. She could feel her lover’s hot breath on her skin as she kissed Pearl’s shoulders. Adelaide pulled slightly away from the intense embrace. She calmed her breathing as she took her time removing the rest of Pearl’s clothing. She smiled as her young lover trembled from her touch. “You are so beautiful,” she confessed once she could finally gaze upon all of Pearl. The blonde blushed shyly in response as Adelaide slowly removed the rest of her own clothing.
She watched the erratic rise and fall of Pearl’s chest as she curled up beside her. They kissed shyly their bodies a breath apart. Adelaide trembled as she felt Pearl’s hand coming to rest on her bare thigh. She inhaled sharply as their nipples brushed. “Touch me anyway you want to,” She encouraged her lover as she ran her fingers down the supple curve of the blonde’s body. Pearl smiled shyly in response as she gently traced Adelaide’s hip. They kissed softly as they gently caressed one another, their bodies still not completely touching.
The kisses grew deeper as did their explorations. Adelaide filled her hands with her lover’s breasts and brushed the rose color buds with her thumbs as she felt her lover’s hands drifting down her back and caressing her ass. The brunette slowly began to kiss her way down her lover’s body as she felt Pearl’s touches growing bolder. She circled Pearl’s nipples with her tongue as the blonde whimpered with need.
She suckled one of the buds into her mouth as her lover’s legs wrapped around her waist. She could feel Pearl’s desire pressing against her skin as she feasted upon her breasts. Adelaide felt her passion slipping from her body as Pearl began to grind urgently against her. The brunette cupped her lover’s backside and guided her to thrust harder against her. She slipped one hand between the blonde’s thighs and dipped into her wetness as she continued to tease her nipples with her teeth and her tongue.
Pearl was pleading with her as she parted her and filled her hand with her lover’s passion. The blonde was on fire as Adelaide gently teased her nub stroking it slowly. She licked the valley of Pearl’s cleavage as she captured the throbbing nub between her fingers. “Adelaide,” Pearl cried out as she gripped the brunette’s shoulders.
Adelaide gazed up at her lover whose eyes were clouded with raw desire. She entered the warm wetness of her womanhood. She whispered words of love as she took her lover slowly and gently. She kissed her way down her lover’s body until she was burying her face in her sweet nectar.
Her body was burning as she tasted her lover for the first time. Pearl filled her hands with Adelaide’s long dark hair. The loud noises emanating from the barroom did nothing to drown out Pearl’s cries of ecstasy as Adelaide drove her over the edge. Adelaide continued to pleasure her lover until she felt Pearl’s hands slipping from her hair.
She kissed her way back up the blonde’s quivering form and kissed her deeply. Pearl rolled the taller woman onto her back as Adelaide pressed her firm thigh against her lover’s wetness. Pearl mirrored her actions as their nubs met. They thrust wildly against one another. Adelaide cried out with pleasure as she felt her lover’s tiny fingers caressing her bottom and parting her slick folds.
“Yes,” Adelaide cried out as her lover filled her and their bodies became one. The brunette was certain she saw the heavens opening up before her as Pearl’s touch took her deeper. They had collapsed into a heap, their bodies covered with sweat as they began kissing and caressing once again. Adelaide taught her lover well that night and Pearl was an eager student. The older wiser dancer was amazed by how her lover knew just how to touch her. She loved the feel of Pearl’s body on top of her own as she watched her young lover pleasuring the both of them.
Pearl did blush when Adelaide licked the passion from the blonde’s fingers. The gentle swirling of Adelaide’s tongue reignited Pearl’s desire and soon the blonde was riding against her once again.
“Stop,” Adelaide finally croaked out just before dawn. Pearl was reluctant to leave the warmth of Adelaide’s thighs. Pearl nestled in her arms and kissed her neck. “Rest,” Adelaide pleaded to her chuckling lover who was running the tip of her finger across the brunette’s nipple.
They failed to emerge from their room the following day each far too exhausted to move. They held one another as they mapped out a plan for the future, which didn’t include either of them dancing in a saloon ever again.
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