The Masked Man

It was a Tuesday night; the house was quiet as Vanessa lay staring at the ceiling. The day had pulled her every way possible and she was feeling the aftermath. She had just opened her second boutique, and although things were going well, Vanessa was overwhelmed. She was in a new relationship and between keeping Kevin entertained and the lights on in both locations, tired had long expired as a term to describe what she was. She was hanging on, literally, as she gripped the sheets hoping it would give her the comfort she needed. It didn’t.

Tuesday nights were movie night. She and Kevin had a standing date-in night and for the past few weeks, she didn’t have the energy. It wasn’t Kevin; he was great, tall, dark and handsome, with eyes that captivated. It had only been about 6 months since they met and although Vanessa was incredibly attracted to him, something was off. She couldn’t quite put her finger on it so she chocked it up to being work stress creeping into her personal life.  Despite her desire to curl up in her comfy bed with a good read, alone, she decided to pull herself together and prepare for date night. This week was Vanessa’s place.

Vanessa showered, grabbed the lotion and made her way to her vanity mirror to rid her face of the flushed look. Fifteen minutes later she had managed to feel a little uptick in her mood and just in time as she heard the knock on the door. Before opening the door she walked past the mirror to make sure she was ready. Her reflection gave her the confirmation she needed. She mentally patted herself on the back as the work she had been putting in at the gym appeared to be paying off. Knock Knock. Seems someone is impatient, she thought to herself as she sashayed across her newly polished hardwood. Giving herself one last look in the mirror alongside the front door, before swinging the door open.  It wasn’t Kevin.

Before Vanessa could close the door, as fear overcame her, the masked man pushed her inside. She wanted to scream then remembered her incessant need for space influenced her purchase of this home with the closest neighbor being a mile away on either side. She ran over her homes setup in her head, and remembered the alarm she had installed had an emergency indicator on the kitchen wall. She looked at the wall clock, it was 7:45. Where was Kevin? She stood motionless just beyond the front door and wondered how she would be able to get to the kitchen without this man, whoever he was, clobbering her over the head. Vanessa had watched so many crime shows growing up she felt like she could be Olivia Benson, so she tried to talk him.

Who are you and why are you in my house?

The masked man said nothing. He just stood there, eyes fixed on Vanessa. His hands were at his sides, he wore gloves, leather ones. He had on jeans, boots and a blue zipped jacket. His eyes were dark and unreadable.

The silence was deafening and it went on for what seemed to Vanessa like forever.

Then…

Hello Vanessa. 


His voice, the sound of thunder, shook Vanessa to her core as she wondered how he knew her name.  She wanted to move but her feet were stuck and everything she hadn’t done flooded into her thoughts.  The trip she didn’t take last year with her best friends, the dinner and movie her mother invited her to, the Sunday dinner invitation from her brother.  She had always been so busy, or rather so wrapped up in what she had going on that she rarely took a step away from it.  And, it seemed tonight the step she took to the spot she was standing in, just beyond the front door, across from the masked man would be her last.

How do you know my name?  What is it that you want?

Her questions seemed to have fallen on deaf ears.  Why wasn’t he responding?  Why was he just staring?  His silence scared Vanessa even more.  She glanced in the mirror alongside the door to see how far away she was from the kitchen.  Her gaze returned to the man, as he stood there silently, just staring at her.  She gathered her courage and bolted toward the kitchen.  As if he knew her exact thoughts, he cut her off.  Vanessa remembered her cell phone was in the bedroom.  She ran as fast as she could, hoping that she would reach it before he reached her.  She made it to her room, grabbed her phone and begins to dial 9-1-1.  Before she could press the green button to send the call, she felt his presence behind her.  She could hear him breathing and feel his breath on her neck.

She froze.

Saying nothing, he pushed Vanessa onto her bed.  Please, no! He removed her clothes, one article at a time.  Starting with her socks, he grabbed one foot, tugging at the toe until the entire sock fell to the floor.  He repeated the same step for her left foot.  He made his way to her leggings, her cardigan and then her shirt.  He paused as if to admire Vanessa as she lay in nothing but her bra and panty.  Vanessa was so stunned by his gentleness, she didn’t know whether to run or relax.  Who are you?

Still he said nothing.  He cradled Vanessa in his arms and his cologne flooded her nostrils. She caught herself relaxing then she remembered she was being held by a stranger, a masked stranger who had pushed his way into her home.  She began to fight.  Get your hands off of me.  Who are you?  Why are you here?  What do you want?  The man didn’t budge as she landed punch after punch, neither did he respond to her demands of answers.  She continued until she could no more.  He laid her down on the bed, rolling her over onto her stomach, bent over to her ear and whispered, relax.

Before Vanessa could protest further he began to massage her temples, making his way to her neck and down her spine, dancing over the curve that connected her lower back to her thighs and down to her feet.  He took her right foot in this hand as if it was precious to him.  He rubbed from one toe to the next, from point to heel.  When did he remove his gloves?   His touch was so strong, yet soft.  It felt safe and reassuring.  Vanessa drifted off.

Knock Knock

Vanessa jumped up, looking around the room for the masked man.  He was no where in sight. She was still wearing her bra and panties.  She grabbed her robe, walked out of her bedroom searching the house for him.  Where was he?  Who was he?  Was that a dream?  

KNOCK KNOCK

The knock got louder.  She ran to the door, looking through the peep hole, she saw it was Kevin.  She glanced over at the mirror alongside the door.  Aside from a little dried drool, she looked just as she did before she opened the door for the masked man.  What had happened?   She looked at the clock on the wall, 12:00 am. Was I sleeping this entire time? She opened the door puzzled, still trying to process where the last few hours had gone.  She noticed the look of agitation on his face.

What’s wrong?

I’ve been calling you.  You didn’t pick up.  Some idiot ran me off the road.


Wait, what?

Someone ran me off the road. I was on my way here, I merged onto I-20 and I noticed an SUV tailing me, I thought I was being paranoid. When I switched lanes, so did they. Once I realized I wasn’t tripping, I sped up and tried to lose them. Traffic picked up and I was able to cut in front of a few cars and get off on an exit. I figured I would just loop around. I made a right on to Rogers and met the SUV driving in my lane. They were speeding toward me going like 55-60 mph. I swerved and hit the curb. No damage to my car, but I busted my tire. The SUV kept going obviously and no one stopped. I called the cops but there was nothing they could do. 

Are you okay?

Yes, but where were you?

Vanessa shifted nervously. I was here, I guess I just dosed off. 

For 6 hours? Okay. Where are your clothes? You wearing this for me? A sly grin spreading across his face.

Uh yea, for you. Vanessa attempted to hide her uncomfortableness. It’s late, let’s shower and go to bed. 

Vanessa headed toward the shower. Kevin walked into the bathroom behind her and began to undress. He slid back the shower door and climbed in. They stood there, silently. She hoped he couldn’t feel how tense her body was. He grabbed her,  hugging her tightly. She could feel his shoulders drop as he exhaled in relief. She attempted to relax in his arms but she couldn’t helped but think about the masked man. How his hands felt on her body. The smell of his cologne. She closed her eyes and imagined he was holding her in the shower.

She pushed her body even closer onto Kevin’s and moved his hands to the small of her back. She grabbed the back of his head and kissed him deeply. Kevin startled by Vanessa’s aggressiveness, stepped back and asked was she okay. Of course I am. Can I not be happy to see you? 

Yea, you can. I kinda just wanted to hold you. I’m not really in the mood after what happened earlier. 

Oh, Okay.  Vanessa replied, feeling embarrassed.

Vanessa grabbed her sponge, showered and exited the now awkward space. Her mind raced back to the fear and excitement of the masked man being in her home. Would she see him again? She still didn’t know who he was but every since their earlier encounter she couldn’t get him off her mind.

Babe, you good. 

Yes, Kevin, I’m fine. 


Vanessa woke early and dressed for work.  She wasn’t in the mood for any small talk from Kevin this morning after he rejected her last night.  She made him breakfast and left a note:  Heading into the office early.  Talk to you later, enjoy your day.  She jumped in her car, putting the key in the ignition.  As she shifted gears, she glanced in her rear mirror and there he was.  The masked man.

He grabbed her, putting his gloved hand over her mouth, pulling her back against the seat. His other hand reaching around the driver seat, grabbing her breast.  Vanessa foot hit the gas in excitement.  He whispered, relax.   He slid his hands down to her yoni and Vanessa bit his finger. His gloved fingers remained fixed over her mouth.

He massaged, rubbed, rolled, plucked until Vanessa could no longer contain herself.  Just as her body prepared to climax, her left arm landed hard on the horn.  The noise woke her from her trance.  As the stars and dark clouds blocking her vision vanished, she opened her eyes and saw Kevin standing at the driver side window.  Vanessa startled, jumped.  She looked behind her to see where the masked man was.  He was gone.  Again.

Knock Knock on the driver side window.  Vanessa, are you okay?

Yes, Kevin.  Just a little prayer before work.  Vanessa smiled nervously.  She shoved her truck into reverse and hurried down the driveway.  What is going on with me?  Before she could answer, her phone buzzed.  It was a text from an unknown number.

Hello Vanessa.


Vanessa looked at her phone in disbelief. He knows where I live and my phone number. How? 

Wednesday’s aren’t usually busy. Vanessa typically uses days like today to check out the insights for her online store. Today, she had meetings scheduled with her online interns as well as her store staff. It would be an interesting day following recent events. She walked in and went straight into the bathroom to get herself together. It was early, she had a couple of hours before the store opened, good thing too considering. 

She freshened her makeup, fluffed out her hair, grabbed wipes from her purse and a change of panties. I can’t believe I still carry these items, but you just never know what the day will bring, obviously. Once dressed she sat on the chair in the bathroom. What is going on with me? I have a boyfriend who I am crazy about, yet I find pleasure in a criminal. He is a criminal, right?. He’s masked, how could he be anything else? She looked down at her watch, 8:15. The employees would be coming in soon. She grabbed her belongings and headed to her office. As she came out of the hallway leading into the showroom, she saw Kevin standing at the door. She walked over and unlocked the door to let him in. 

Hey, what’s going on? What are you doing here?

I came to check on you. You were acting weird last night and this morning. Is everything okay? Is there anything we need to talk about?

Vanessa stunned by his questioning, stood there. She wondered should she tell him that a man pushed his way into the house and gave her a massage of a lifetime. Thats why I was asleep and missed your call, she thought. He rubbed me to sleep.  

Vanessa!

Yes, Kevin. Everything is fine. I guess I’m just feeling a little off today. 

Okay. I was thinking maybe we could do dinner tonight, to make up for last night. I’m dropping my car off at the shop in a few and I’m clearing my schedule for the evening. Get out early if you can. 

Okay, that shouldn’t be a problem. I will call you later. 

They hugged and Kevin left. Vanessa watched as he drove off. She walked to her office, just as she sat down she remembered she forgot to lock the door. She walked back to the showroom, only to see The Masked Man standing in the doorway. It is after 8 in the morning and he is walking around with a mask. This guy is bold. 

Can I help you? 

He walked toward her quickly. So quickly Vanessa became fearful of what would happen. She ran into her office and tried to slam the door but he stopped her plan with his hard bottom boot. She stood against the door as long as she could but she had on heels and he was strong. 

He pushed his way inside the office, closing the door behind him. He picked Vanessa up like she was a rag doll and placed on the chaise she had in the corner. Just like last night, he undressed her. This time he didn’t stop with the outer layers. Within moments, Vanessa lie there naked. She didn’t fight, she just looked at him and how he handled her and her things. He did so delicately, like he cared. 

He turned off the lights in her office and made his way to her yoni. She could tell he had removed his mask and for good cause as he took her as his own, devouring her in the most beautiful way. Wave after wave overtook Vanessa’s body and just when it seemed like she could take no more he entered her. Vanessa’s body tensed. He brought his body to Vanessas, leaning over to her ear and whispered, relax. And, like a dog being told to bark, she did! The sensations flooding her body were like none she had ever felt. She screamed in ecstasy, her body twisting and turning until finally it became lifeless. 

Knock Knock. Ms Smith are you in there? 

Vanessa jumped up, grabbing for her clothes before Christine could turn the knob to her office. Click Click. The door must be locked, Thank God. 

Yes, Christine. I am in here. I will be out in a few minutes. Prepare the store for opening, please. Thank you. 

Yes ma’am. 

Vanessa sat there, mind racing. Although she was feeling pretty darn good she was also  extremely confused. This man kept showing up, smelling all good, taking advantage of her. Then leaving like a thief. It was like he knew what she needed and man did he deliver. This was cheating, right? She needed to tell Kevin. She had never cheated before and the idea of hurting Kevin didn’t sit well with her at all.

I will tell him tonight, at dinner. Damn, I’m out of spare panties. 


Vanessa pulled into the restaurants parking lot, shifting her car into park. She sat there staring at nothing in particular as she thought of the conversation she would have to have with Kevin. This is probably the last supper. 

It began to drizzle. The rain hitting the windshield snapped Vanessa out of her thoughts. She could see Kevin walking inside. Let’s get this over with. Vanessa reached in the back for her umbrella, grabbed her purse, pausing for a second to check her reflection, then exited her car. The sound of her heels clicking the pavement all of sudden seemed so loud. She reached for the door, the restaurant attendant held it open for her as she walked in. 

I am meeting someone. 

Ahh, yes ma’am. Right this way. 

The waiter lead Vanessa to the back of the restaurant. Great, we are all alone. She wondered if that would be a good or bad thing, considering her news. 

Hey Kevin. 

Hey Baby. He stood and helped Vanessa remove her jacket, pulled out her chair and slid her cozily under the table. How was your day?

My day was eventful, how about yours? 

I was able to get my car fixed, things weren’t too bad at the office. I have no complaints outside of repairing a tire that wasn’t my fault. Such is life though, right?

Yes, you’re right. 

So what’s going on with you. You seem on edge, like something is bothering you. 

Well. Yeah. I need to share something with you. 

Vanessa shifted in her seat, checking her surroundings for anyone who may be in ear shot. Last night when you were calling me. I did fall asleep but….she dropped her head as she attempted to gather the words and prepare for the response that would follow.  I had a knock at the door, I thought it was you so I opened it without looking to see who it was. Someone broke in last night. The words just fell out all at once. 

WHAT??? Kevin loudly asked. 

Vanessa swallowed hard. Yes! He pushed me inside. I attempted to get away but he blocked me from hitting the alarm then cornered me in the bedroom when I ran for my phone. The look on Kevin’s face was hard to read. She didn’t know whether to call the waiter over and have him escort her to the car or what. 

DID HE TOUCH YOU? Kevin asked through gritted teeth, his fist balled and on the table as if to prepare to swing. 

Vanessa cleared her threat. Well, yes he did. He took off my clothes. He didn’t rape me or anything. He just gave me massage and I fell asleep. 

Wait! So you enjoyed it? You allowed a strange man to put his hands on you and you didn’t resist? Wow, really?  His face went from anger to hurt and Vanessa felt the welling up of regret in her throat and itbwould only get worse as she continued.  

There’s more. Kevin slid back his chair but didn’t stand. Okay. 

I fell asleep, you actually woke me up when you were banging on the door. The guy just disappeared. Kevin rolled his eyes. But, he came back this morning. He was in the truck this morning when I left for work. When you heard the horn it was because….Vanessa’s voice trailed off. 

It was because of what? I can’t hear you. 

Vanessa took a deep breath.  It was because he brought me to a climax. She couldn’t look at him. She just stared at her hands. When I got to work, after you left, he showed up again and well yea….we had sex, Vanessa whispered. 

Y’all did what? 

Vanessa cleared her threat. We had sex.

Kevin got up and walked out. Vanessa caught the tear as it rolled down her cheek. She sat there, contemplating whether she should follow him or just count it as a loss. The waiter walked over. Will you guys be ordering? He must have seen the look on Kevin’s face when he left. Give us a few moments please. 

Vanessa sat there, half waiting, half fearing to get up. Ten minutes had past and no sign of Kevin. Vanessa decided to order a meal to go. She ordered a crown Apple while it was prepared. A girls got to eat.  The waiter brought her order and she paid the bill. She made her way to her truck, inspecting the parking lot for Kevin’s car. He was gone. It was definitely over. 

She drove the 18 minutes home, pulled in the driveway and couldn’t help but be reminded of her morning in this spot. She pulled herself from her thoughts and made her way into the house. As she prepared to undress and shower she heard a knock at the door. Maybe it’s Kevin. Maybe it’s not over. She took the walk from her bedroom to the front door, giving herself a quick glance in the mirror next to the door. She peered through the peep hole. 

The Masked Man. 

She swung open the door.  Are you ready to tell me who you are? I think I deserve to know considering all that’s taken place. Don’t give me that silent ish. Not now, not today. My relationship is over because of you.

Hello Vanessa. He removed his mask. 

Vanessa’s jaw dropped to the floor. OMG! What? How? Why? 

KEVIN!!!

 

Laneshia Lamb