On a Wednesday morning, Hazel sat at the edge of her bathtub watching as fresh water poured out of her faucet, falling to the tub’s floor. This wasn’t her usual routine, but she needed the relief. Since her business had been receiving increased amounts of orders, she was spending less time caring for herself.
She needed a pedicure, her curly hair she’d been wearing in a bun for close to a month was matting. And burnout neared.
A bath in the a.m. was not her usual jam, but she’d make an exception.
The bath could’ve waited since at that hour, she scheduled Sebastian, her unreliable mail carrier, to pick up her crate of gold bubble mailers. But he was never on time in the three weeks he’d been picking up her packages. So she figured she’d fit in a bath before he arrived which was usually an hour later than she scheduled.
Hazel stepped into the bathtub, the water warming the bottoms of her feet. She sat down and leaned her back against the tub’s wall.
The moment she closed her eyes and exhaled, she heard the buzz of her bell.
Her eyes shot open as she reached for her phone to check the time.
10 a.m. on the dot.
“No fucking way.” She gritted her teeth.
She grabbed her towel, not bothering to dry her skin, only wrapping it around her body and folding the top down to secure it.
“This fool has been picking up my mail for the past three weeks and has never been on time.”
She pulled opened her bathroom door and stomped her way to her front door.
“Now that it’s time for me to relax, he decides today he’ll arrive at the scheduled hour? Asshole!”
At her front door, she balanced herself on the arch of her feet and peered through her peephole.
Sure enough, it was Sebastian.
“Really?” She quizzed. “How are you on time today?”
“Orders were short, so I got through my route quicker than other da—”
“Come back in an hour,” she cut in.
“I’m busy right now.” She glanced down at herself realizing she was wet and naked beneath that white towel. “Plus I’m not dressed.”
“Mmm,” he moaned on the other side of the door. But it was subtle. If he wasn’t standing so close to Hazel’s door there would be no way she would hear that.
Just the sound of his moan made her wetter than water ever could.
“Listen it’s cool, I’ll keep my eyes on the crate,” he said. “Just place the crate by the door and I’ll grab it.”
“I’ll only be a moment. I will go put on—”
“Hazel,” he interjected, his voice heavy with more bass than usual. He cleared his throat. “A moment for you could be forever to me. I can’t come back and I can’t waste any more time than I’m wasting right now.”
She kissed her teeth. “Oh please. You only want to see me in my towel.”
“Maybe,” he shot back.
Her jaw dropped but the smile on her face helped support it.
“Or I just want to get to my other pickups on time.”
She pursed her lips.
“You’re not the first person to answer the door in a towel, trust me. I’ve seen it all. Some people don’t even come to the door with pants on.”
Hazel glanced down at the crate of stuffed mailers and sighed.
“Fine, whatever,” she said, tightening her towel that needed no more tightening. Once comfortable, she opened the door just a little, enough for Sebastian to reach inside to get the crate.
As he lifted it and tilted the crate slightly to fit through the small gap Hazel provided, one mailer slid off another and fell out behind the door.
Hazel picked it up and moved from behind the door to hand the stuffed bubble mailer to him.
Their eyes locked only for a moment before Sebastian defied his promise by allowing his eyes to trace her body from the slope of her shoulders to the curve in her waste down to the thickness of her calves. He stared as tiny water beads transformed to wet lines, trailing down to her ankles.
Hazel narrowed her eyes. “I thought you said you wouldn’t look.”
“Typical. Here.” She shoved the mailer against his chest to get him to refocus. “Take it and leave.”
His chest was hard, something she noticed the second her hand made contact with him.
That observation made her wetter than his moan did.
Sebastian took the gold mailer out of her hand then handed her the clipboard and pen. As Hazel initialed near her address, he dipped his hand in his back pocket removing a tiny plain white card.
She glanced up for a moment and saw him pull out another pen from his pocket and quickly jot something down.
After handing the clipboard to him, Hazel stepped back a little to close her door.
“Here, take this.” Sebastian extended his hand with the card in her direction.
She stared at it. “What is that?”
She brought her hand to her towel and moved more out of view behind her door. “The nerve. That’s very presumptuous of you.”
“You need to take the edge off and I can help you with that.”
“What? What do you mean by that?”
He licked his lips slow and smirked after.
Her brows arched in response.
“Are you kidding me?” Her eyes bulged too. “Oh hell no. Uh-uh. This is not a porno. What the hell do you think this is? I’m… I’m gonna call your location right now and report you to your superior.”
He pulled the card back and turned it over. On his palm, he used it as a surface to write something else down but on the other side of that card.
“That’s his name… my superior as you say, and his direct extension,” Sebastian said low. “On the other side of that card is my number. Call either one.”
Her jaw dropped again before she scoffed.
“The choice is yours.” He leaned forward to pick up the crate. “You should step inside. Don’t want the neighbors getting enticed.”
But she didn’t listen.
Hazel watched as Sebastian loaded the crate into the back of the truck.
The moment dumbfounded her. Left her completely in shock at his audacity… that was irresistibly hot and was having an effect on her. She brought her legs together and squeezed her thighs tight.
Her eyes moved from the card that he gave her to him as he approached the driver side of his truck. He not once looked over at her to check if she was looking at him like he always did.
Hazel flipped the card back and forth, staring at both contacts.
She’d definitely call one of those numbers.
She just wasn’t sure which one.