Title:  Make a Wish

By: tayryn

Rating: *snorts* think about it.  I wrote it.

Disclaimer: not mine. Do I need to say more?

Summary:  It’s Clarisse’s birthday…

Notes: a birthday story for our beloved Susan!


Happy Birthday, my friend!!  *BIG HUGS!!*





The sunlight spilled into the room, waking the lone occupant of the large bed from a peaceful sleep.


Clarisse Mignonette Renaldi, Queen of Genovia stretched beneath the thick comforter then, resolutely keeping her eyes closed, rolled over onto her side, not quite ready to start her day.


She did not want to venture out of her suite today.


‘Not today,’ Clarisse thought with an internal sigh.  ‘Today will be nothing but torture…’


She sighed again, and knowing she had no choice but to get out of bed and face the day, slowly opened her eyes. 


A surprised smile touched her lips.


Clarisse sat up then reached out to lift the peach rose off of the pillow next to her.  She brought the full bloom to her nose and inhaled deeply, allowing the fragrant scent to fill her lungs.  She picked up the folded piece of paper still lying on the pillow then reached for her glasses on the night table.  She slipped them on and unfolded the note.


“For one whose beauty outshines even the most perfect rose.  Happy birthday.”


The note wasn’t signed.


It did not need to be.


Clarisse knew to whom the elegant masculine scrawl belonged, and as she reread the words from his pen, a large smile came to her lips.


She brought the rose to her nose once again to inhale the sweet scent then touched the silken petals to her lips and whispered Joseph’s name into the flower.  Clarisse lingered in the bed for a few moments longer, rereading the note and inhaling the rose before she realized that she had better stop dawdling.


Clarisse placed the rose, and the paper on her night table along with her glasses then slipped out of bed.  She padded barefoot across the room to her bathroom, mentally preparing herself for the day ahead.


It was her fifty-fifth birthday… and the whole country was intent on celebrating it.


Clarisse sighed.  She did not want a big to do.


All she wanted… all she had ever wanted… was to spend the day with her family; celebrating quietly.


‘But my family is all gone…’ she thought sadly.  ‘Rupert and Philippe are dead.  Pierre is away on assignment with the church, and Amelia is at school.  Even my parents are long gone… I am all alone.’


A maudlin sigh escaped Clarisse's lips.


‘You’re not alone,’ a voice whispered in her mind.  ‘You have Joseph.’




Just the thought of him sent a shiver of need through her.  A need she had never known in all the years she had been married to Rupert.


Clarisse shook her head and focused her attention back to getting into her shower, getting dressed, and facing her day.  As she entered the bathroom, she stopped.


On the vanity, in a small crystal vase was another rose.  Propped against the vase was another note.


Clarisse smiled as she traced the delicate peachy-pink petals lightly with her fingers before she lifted it up to her nose and she reached for the note.  She chuckled when she saw that the writing was larger than the last one.


“Today… there will be no one as beautiful as thee.  For thy beauty shines from within.  Look into the mirror now, and see the beauty I am blessed to see every day.  An outer beauty enhanced by the incredible inner beauty thee possess.”


Clarisse brushed her lips over the rose as she glanced up into the mirror.  She shook her head, a bemused smile forming on her lips.  ‘Beauty, indeed…’ she chuckled silently.  ‘Bed head… no make up… I think I may have to send Joseph to get his eyes checked.’




Thoughts of him filled her mind again.


Joseph was more than an employee.


Joseph was a friend. 


He was her best friend.  Her confidant… the person she trusted more than anyone in the world.


Joseph was the man she was, and had been secretly in love with for years.


Clarisse sighed and returned the rose to its vase.


What she felt for Joseph did not matter. 


Nor did his feelings for her. 


She had a duty to Genovia.  A duty, which sadly, had to come before anything else.  A duty which had been drummed into her since she was a child, betrothed to the future king of her small country.


With another sigh, Clarisse slipped off her nightgown, turned on the water and stepped into her shower.  It would not do her any good to dwell on things she could not change… at least not right now.  With a last, soft whisper of his name, Clarisse pushed thoughts of Joseph out of her mind.


~^~ ~^~


Clarisse walked into her office, and felt a stab of disappointment when she saw that there was no rose waiting on her desk as she had hoped.


“Good morning, Your Majesty.”  Charlotte smiled at the queen and curtsied.  “And may I also say, Happy Birthday.”


“Thank you, Charlotte.”  Clarisse favoured her assistant with a smile as she settled behind her desk.  “What is on the agenda for today?”


“You have a meeting with the Prime Minister in fifteen minutes to discuss the trade agreement with Canada,” Charlotte began, consulting the agenda in her hand.  “After that, at ten thirty there is the early session of Parliament and then, as per your request, I’ve cleared your schedule for the afternoon so that you might rest for the party tonight.”


Clarisse nodded with a soft sigh.  “I do not understand this great need to throw such a large party for my birthday every year,” she told the younger woman.  “The last thing I need is a reminder that I am yet another year older.”


Charlotte merely smiled and nodded her agreement then put her hand to her ear.  “The Prime Minister’s car has arrived at the gates, ma’am.”


“Thank you, Charlotte.”


“Can I get you anything while you’re waiting for him to join you?”


Clarisse looked thoughtful for a moment.  “Some hot cider would be lovely, thank you.”


“Apple or pear?”


Clarisse bit her lower lip gently then answered in a quiet voice.  “Apple.”


Charlotte smiled and bit back a chuckle.  “Yes, ma’am.  I’ll get it for you right away.”


Clarisse smiled her thanks, and deciding to get a head start on the trade agreement, she looked over her desk for her pen.  When she couldn’t find it, she pulled open the drawer to her right.


A large smile filled her face.


She lifted a yellow rose from the drawer and stared at it.  A small laugh bubbled out of her as she realized the rose was actually made of chocolate.  She tapped the ‘bud’ against her lips as she reached for the note in the drawer.


‘A sweet for the sweetest person I know.  A little something for when you need a little boost later in the day.’


Clarisse shook her head affectionately as thoughts of Joseph once more came to the forefront of her thoughts.




A wistful sigh escaped Clarisse as she traced her fingers over the chocolate rose.  Her introspective thoughts were interrupted by the sound of her office door opening.


She placed the rose back in the drawer and slipped the note into her pocket.


“Here is your cider, Your Majesty.”  Charlotte appeared, carrying a tray followed by Prime Minister Motaz.


“Good morning, Sebastian.”  Clarisse smiled at the tall, robust gentleman before her.


“Your Majesty,” Sebastian affected a small bow.  “May I extend best wishes on your birthday?”


“Thank you,” Clarisse smiled then gestured to the chair in front of her desk.  “Shall we get down to work?”


Motaz nodded and took his seat as Charlotte left the office.




A knock at the door sounded before it opened to reveal Charlotte.


“Is it that time already?”


“Yes, Your Majesty.”  Charlotte answered.


“Time flies when you’re having fun,” Sebastian commented with a sardonic grin.


Clarisse smiled as she signed her name with a flourish.  “Perfect timing,” she said then rose from her chair.  “Shall we, Sebastian?”


“Of course, Your Majesty.”  The Prime Minister nodded as he too got to his feet and followed his sovereign out of her office.  He glanced around.  “I am surprised Joseph is not here.”


At the mention of her Head of Security’s name, Clarisse felt herself flush slightly.  She gestured absently to the cameras that dotted the corridors all over the palace.  “Joseph is always keeping watch, and in the palace he does not need to be with me every moment.  I am quite safe here.”


“Of course,” Sebastian smiled, having seen the faint blush creep over the queen’s face at the mention of Joseph.  He said nothing more, allowing a comfortable silence to fall.


Clarisse’s thoughts turned inward as she walked the familiar path to the Parliamentary Chamber.




She hadn’t seen him all morning.  Which, the more she thought about it, she found rather odd. 


Joseph, if he wasn’t waiting outside her suite to escort her to her office, was waiting in her office for her.


Then she remembered the roses, and a smile came to her face.


Joseph was up to something.


The thought of it sent a thrill through her, and she found herself looking forward to what other surprises he had in store for her.


Before Clarisse knew it, she was being escorted to her seat beside the Prime Minister at the front of the chamber.  She was just about to sit down when she spotted yet another rose.  This particular flower was dual coloured, red and yellow.  Clarisse lifted it from the seat, along with the note and a little something extra then sat down.


She unfolded the note.


“I know how you sometimes dread these sessions, and find them tedious.  And since I will wager that you did not unwrap the last flower, I have attached a little something to give you an extra boost to help you make it through this session.”


Clarisse smiled, and brought the rose up, touching it to her lips before inhaling its sweet perfume.


He knew her so well.


She looked down at the little extra and was not surprised to find a couple of her favourite candies.


Clarisse then realized there was a second page to the note.


“If I may be so bold, may I request an audience with her Majesty this evening?  Half an hour before the start of the birthday ball?”


Clarisse slowly nodded her head, knowing that Joseph was watching her.  At the sound of the doors opening to allow the members of Parliament in, she placed the rose in her lap and lifted her head, affecting an air of nonchalance.




“That was a productive session,” Sebastian commented to the queen as the chamber slowly emptied.


“Yes it was,” Clarisse nodded happily then rose.  “Now if you’ll excuse me, I am going to go rest before the ball tonight.”


Motaz bowed.  “Your Majesty.”


Clarisse inclined her head then left the Parliament chamber.




“I wish to be woken at four,” Clarisse told her ladies maids.


“Will you want a shower or a bath, Your Majesty?”  Olivia asked.


“A bath,” Clarisse answered.  “We can begin my hair and makeup at quarter to five, as I have a meeting at five-thirty.”


“Yes, ma’am.”  The two women nodded.


“Now, you both may do whatever you wish for the next several hours.”


“Thank you, Your Majesty.”  They curtsied and left the queen’s suite.


Once they had gone, Clarisse turned and moved into her bedroom, smiling when she saw that the heavy drapes had been drawn to block out the light.  She closed the door behind her, the low light on her night table keeping the room from falling into complete darkness.


She lifted the rose she still held in her hand to her nose, once more inhaling the distinct fragrance. 


“Oh, Joseph…” Clarisse couldn’t help but whisper his name.


If asked at that moment, what she wanted most for her birthday, Clarisse would answer, without hesitation… Joseph.


She wanted him.


Wanted him with a need so powerful it scared her.


‘And it’s not just physical,’ Clarisse thought to herself as she moved towards her bed, her fingers slowly undoing the buttons on her blouse.  ‘I love everything about him.’


She wanted to spend the rest of her life with him.


“One day,” Clarisse said aloud.  “One day we’ll get our chance.”


She placed the rose beside the one she’d found this morning then continued to remove her clothes.  Once she was dressed in only her slip, Clarisse slid into her bed.


Rolling over onto her side, Clarisse wrapped her arms around the extra pillow and with another whisper of Joseph’s name, she fell asleep.


Dreaming of one day.




“There you are, Your Majesty.” 


Clarisse looked at herself in the mirror as the hairdresser pronounced her finished.  She smiled and nodded.  “Very nice, Ramone.  Thank you.”


Ramone beamed at the praise.


Clarisse glanced at the clock on the wall.




She motioned to her ladies maids.


Understanding, Olivia and Priscilla ushered Ramone out of the queen’s suite, pulling the door shut behind them.


Several moments later, there was a knock on the door.  With a shiver of anticipation, Clarisse called out for Joseph to enter.  The door swung open, and Joseph walked in to the queen’s suite.


Clarisse’s breath caught in her throat.


As per protocol, Joseph was not wearing his usual black leather jacket.  He was dressed smartly in a black tuxedo.


‘And looking extremely handsome,’ Clarisse thought to herself even as the word ‘hot’, one of her grand-daughter’s expressions entered her mind.


“Good evening, Your Majesty.”  Joseph said with the hint of a smile playing at the corners of his lips.


“Joseph,” Clarisse replied, willing her erratically beating heart to slow back down to normal.  She could not believe how just the sight of him was affecting her.  She had seen him in a tuxedo before but for some reason, at this very moment, there was just something about him.


“May I say, Your Majesty… that you look quite beautiful this evening?”


Clarisse blushed.  “Thank you, Joseph.”


Joseph smiled and held out a rose.


The most perfect red rose Clarisse had ever seen.


“Happy birthday, Clarisse.”  Joseph said in a quiet voice as she reached out to take the flower.


“Thank you…” Clarisse whispered as she brought the red bloom to her lips before inhaling the sweet scent.  “And thank you for all the other roses as well… they’re just lovely, Joseph.”


Joseph smiled.  “Not as lovely as you, my queen.”


“…Joseph…” the pink hue on Clarisse’s face darkened.


“Clarisse…” Joseph took a step closer.  “May I… may I give the birthday girl a birthday kiss?”


Clarisse felt her heart skip a beat at his request and unable to find her voice, she simply nodded.


Moving so that he was standing directly in front of her, Joseph reached out to gently grasp her upper arms.  “You are certain?”


“Yes,” Clarisse finally managed to find her voice then licked her lips when she felt Joseph’s warm breath pass over them.


Joseph smiled again as he leaned in closer and brushed his mouth over hers in the softest of kisses before pulling back slightly.


Their eyes met.


Clarisse licked her lips again.  “Joseph…” she exhaled his name as she lifted her arms and laid her hands on his chest.  “…kiss me again…”


Joseph obeyed and leaned back in, pressing his mouth firmer against hers.  He nibbled at her lips then lightly stroked his tongue over them, seeking entrance.


At the light swipe, Clarisse opened her mouth to allow him entrance, and a low moan sounded deep in her throat as Joseph’s tongue slipped into her mouth and began to stroke hers.  His unique flavour washed over her taste buds, and Clarisse found herself growing dizzy with desire.


Joseph groaned, a low throaty sound as he tangled his tongue with Clarisse’s; tasting her… tasting his queen… his love… for the first time.  His hands tightened on her arms and he pulled her closer as he deepened the kiss.


Clarisse slid her hands up Joseph’s chest to his shoulders as he pulled her tighter against his hard body.  She felt his arousal and with another moan, Clarisse wrapped her arms around his neck, her left hand snaking up to stroke his head as she pressed her body ever closer.


“My queen…” Joseph murmured against her lips before beginning a journey along her jaw to nuzzle just below her ear.  “…for so long I’ve wanted to kiss you…” his arms wrapped around her, his hands splaying over the curve of her bottom.  “…to hold you close…”


Clarisse’s head fell back, to grant Joseph easier access.  “…Joseph…”


Joseph trailed his mouth back to hers.


They kissed with undisguised passion, each pouring all their love, all their longing and desire into the kiss.  Their bodies moulded together as they sought to get closer… to merge themselves into one being.


A soft beeping pulled them apart.


“What’s that?”  Clarisse asked breathlessly, still in Joseph’s embrace.


“My watch…” Joseph replied as he maneuvered so that he could turn off the trilling without releasing her from his arms.  “You’re due to start making your way to the ballroom.”


“Which means Charlotte will be here any moment now,” Clarisse said and stepped reluctantly out of his arms.  She touched her fingers to her lips, still feeling the effect of Joseph’s kisses.  “I… I need to put on my lipstick…” she said then smiled.  “I am glad now that I decided to wait…”


Joseph chuckled.  “So am I.  As nice as the colour is on you… I really don’t think it’s mine.”


“Oh, Joseph!”  Clarisse laughed and cupped his cheek before she turned and walked back into her bedroom.


Joseph followed, and leaned up against the doorframe to watch as Clarisse applied her lipstick.  Smiling back at her when she smiled at him through the mirror, admiring the view she presented.


“There,” Clarisse put down the tube of lipstick and turned to face him.  “Do I look as if I’ve just been thoroughly kissed by someone who definitely knows how to kiss?”


Joseph’s smile grew into a grin as she moved to stand before him.  He reached out to cup her cheek, his thumb feathering over her lips but not touching them.  “I think you’re safe…”


“You’re certain?  My lips are still tingling… they don’t look swollen?”


“Surprisingly… no.  I must not have kissed you long enough.”


“Definitely not long enough,” Clarisse said as she reached up to lay her hand over his, holding his palm to her cheek.  She grasped his hand in hers and pulled it from her cheek, giving it a squeeze as she led him back to the lounge.


“Clarisse…” Joseph began as he reached out to take her other hand.  “I know I cannot have the first dance… however, may I request the honour of last dance of the evening?”


Clarisse smiled and nodded.  “Yes, Joseph.  I promise… you will have the last dance of the evening.”


Joseph lifted her hands to his lips and pressed soft kisses to her knuckles.  “Thank you.”


Just then there was a knock on the door.


Clarisse caressed Joseph’s cheek then dropped her hands to her sides.  “Come in, Charlotte.”


The door opened and the young aide entered the suite with a smile.  “Your Majesty… all the guests have arrived and are awaiting your entrance.”


“Thank you, Charlotte.”


Joseph offered Clarisse his arm which she gladly took and allowed him to guide her out into the corridor.


“Oh, Charlotte…” Clarisse spoke up to her aide as the three of them moved down the hall.  “Please give Olivia and Priscilla the rest of the night off as well as tomorrow,” she glanced at Joseph who turned to her, his eyebrows quirked slightly in surprise.  She favoured him with a special smile as she continued addressing her assistant.  “I would also like for you to clear my schedule for tomorrow, as I’ve decided to take it off.”


“Yes, Your Majesty.”  Charlotte nodded then addressed the two guards standing at attention at the doors leading to the ballroom.  “Both doors.”


Clarisse glanced at Joseph then reluctantly released his arms.  “Until the last dance…” she whispered for his ears alone then turned to face the doors, which at her nod, were opened.




Joseph frowned as he watched Clarisse bid good night to the Prime Minister.


It had been a long night.


He had watched one nobleman… one parliamentarian after another dance with Clarisse; waiting patiently for the end of the evening… the end of the ball so that he could claim the last dance as promised to him.


Joseph glanced over to where the small orchestra was packing up their instruments, and his frown deepened.


When it was apparent that the last dance of the evening was imminent, Joseph had begun to make his way over to Clarisse, but stopped when he saw Prince Pierre ask his mother for a dance.


Knowing it had been some time since Clarisse had seen, let alone danced with her son, Joseph stepped back into the shadows.




Joseph shook his head, Clarisse’s soft voice pulling him out of his melancholy thoughts.  He inclined his head.  “Your Majesty.”


Clarisse glanced over at the musicians when they called out birthday wishes as they made their way out of the room then looked back at Joseph.


“Joseph… I…”


“Your Majesty.”


Clarisse sighed and turned to see Charlotte hurrying into the room.  “Yes, Charlotte?”


“Everyone has left now, and the crew will be here at seven to clean,” Charlotte told her.


“Thank you, Charlotte.”  Clarisse smiled.  “You did a marvelous job this evening, but the evening is over now.  Why don’t you call it a night?”


“Thank you, Your Majesty.”  Charlotte gave the queen a small curtsey then turned to leave the room.


“Oh, Charlotte…”


Charlotte stopped in the doorway and looked back.  “Yes, ma’am?”


“Take tomorrow off as well.  Sleep in.”


“Yes, Your Majesty.”  With that, Charlotte left the ballroom.


Clarisse turned back to Joseph, who, without speaking, gestured for her to move ahead of him.  Clarisse bit back a smile and moved towards the doors, knowing Joseph was just a step behind her.  She slowed as she exited the ballroom, and waited for him to step up beside her.  When he did, she slipped her arm through his.


“I’m sorry, Joseph.”


“You have nothing to apologize for,” Joseph told her.  “It was nice to see you dancing with Pierre.  I know how long it’s been since he’s visited.”


Clarisse gave him a wistful smile, and the two fell back into a companionable silence as they walked through the halls to Clarisse’s suite. 


“Will you come inside?” Clarisse asked Joseph when they reached her rooms.


Joseph nodded and followed her into the dimly lit suite.  He closed the door behind him and watched her walk to the middle of the lounge then turn to look at him.


Their eyes held, and both were surprised to see desire building in the other.


“Dance with me,” Clarisse asked him in a quiet voice.  At the uncertain look on his face, she held a hand out to him.  “Dance with me, Joseph.  Here… now… the last dance of the evening…”


A smile filled Joseph’s face as he slowly walked over to stand before her and clasped her small hand in his larger one.  “There is no music, Clarisse.”  He said even as he pulled her gently into his arms.


Clarisse merely smiled and laid her hands on his chest.  “Do we really need music, Joseph?”


Joseph shook his head.  “No… we don’t,” he replied in a quiet voice as he pulled her closer and began to lead her in a gentle sway.


Little by little as they danced, their bodies drew closer until they were holding each other tight; moving a rhythm of their own making.  Clarisse laid her head on his Joseph’s shoulder, allowing the familiar scent of his cologne to invade her senses, and sighed happily.


“You’re not falling asleep on me, are you?”  Joseph asked gently.


“No… I am far from sleepy,” Clarisse answered as her fingers played with the lapel of his tuxedo jacket.


Joseph closed his eyes at her husky reply, and fought to keep tight reign over his desire.  A battle he was quickly losing with every moment that passed holding her… holding his queen… the woman he loved… in his arms, and feeling her body move against him in the seductive dance they were sharing.


“What about you?”




Clarisse lifted her head from his shoulder and met his eyes.  “Are you falling asleep on me?”


“No.  Much like you, I am far from sleepy,” Joseph answered, allowing a hint of the desire he was feeling to creep into his voice.


They gazed into each other’s eyes, both having forgotten their dance.


Joseph lifted his hand to cup her cheek.  “My queen… may I bestow another birthday kiss upon your lips?”


Clarisse nodded, her voice shaky when she answered.  “You may…”


Joseph brought his other hand up to cup her other cheek as he lowered his head and brushed his lips softly against hers.


“More…” Clarisse murmured against his lips, her hand moving from his shoulder to cup the back of his head and drew his mouth back to hers for a passionate kiss that left them breathless when they parted.


“Mmm…”Clarisse sighed against his lips.  “If anyone had asked… this… is what I wanted for my birthday…”


“This?”  Joseph asked, sliding his hands down her back as they once again began to sway to their own music, sharing kisses and losing themselves in each other; the steadily quickening beat of their hearts weaving a warm cocoon around them.


Some time later, Clarisse slowly broke off the kiss and stepped out of Joseph’s arms and reached for his hands.




Clarisse simply gave him a sensuous smile as she slowly walked backwards, pulling him with her towards her bedroom.  “This…” was all she answered.


“Clarisse, are you sure about this?”  Joseph stopped them.


“Yes, I’m sure,” Clarisse smiled and nodded as she stepped closer to him, sliding her arms around his neck.  “I’ve wanted to be with you for a long time now.”


“And I you,” Joseph smiled softly and slipped his arms about her waist, drawing her closer.  “I just don’t want there to be any regrets between us.  You mean too much to me for that to happen.”


“The only thing I regret, is that I’ve taken so long to admit to myself just how much I do want you.”


The smile on Joseph’s face caused his eyes to twinkle.  “I would have waited for you for forever.  I just want you to be sure” his hands caressed her back.  “I don’t what us to rush into anything.”


“I am sure.”  Clarisse told him.  “Joseph, life is too short.  It’s meant for living…  You have to embrace each moment of it and live it as if it were your last.  And I want to spend all my remaining moments… be they many or few… with you.”


Joseph’s smile grew as she moved closer, pressing her body against his, her hand sliding up to cup his cheek as her smile grew softer.


“I love you, Joseph.”  Clarisse told him in richly emotional voice.  “And I don’t want to wait any longer to be with you.”


“I love you too, Clarisse.”  Joseph said in a quiet voice.  “I have from the moment I saw you,” he brought his hand up, tracing her features with his fingers.  “And I don’t want to wait any longer to make love with you either.”


“Then let’s not waste any more time.”  Clarisse murmured as she threaded her fingers into the fringe of hair on his head and pulled his lips down to hers.


Joseph responded, wrapping his arms around her and pulling her closer, as he returned her passionate kiss; their tongues dancing in each other’s mouths, foreshadowing the dance their bodies would soon be sharing.


After several long minutes, he broke off the kiss, bent slightly to lift Clarisse effortlessly into his arms and carried her the rest of the way into her bedroom.  He let her down slowly at the foot of the bed, her body sliding against his as she stood before him.


They slowly began to remove each other’s clothes, each taking turns to undo buttons, pausing between each article of clothing that fell to steal a kiss or to caress each new area of exposed flesh, until they were both standing gloriously naked before each other.


“You are so beautiful,” Joseph whispered in a husky voice, reaching out to tuck a stray lock of hair behind her ear and then trailing his finger down the smooth column of her neck to her shoulder.  “Even more so than in my dreams.”


“You’re not so bad yourself.”  Clarisse smiled as she placed her hands on his chest, relishing the feel of the soft hair as her fingers followed the trail that arrowed down across his firm stomach.  “Not so bad,” she repeated, her fingers walking back up until her hands were resting on his shoulders and drew him closer, pressing her body against his.


Their lips came together again in a fiery kiss as Joseph guided her body down onto the bed; rolling so that Clarisse was on top.  She broke off the kiss and smiled nervously down at him as he ran his hands up and down her back.


“Joseph?  I… this is…”


“I know,” Joseph smiled.  “It’s all right… all of this will be new for both of us…”


Clarisse looked deep into his blue eyes, feeling a shiver of anticipation run through her at the way they’d grown dark and intense with desire, and smiled.  “Thank you…”


Joseph reached up, threading his hands in her short tresses; stroking her cheeks with his thumbs.  He smiled up at her, losing himself in the sapphire hue of her eyes before drawing her lips back down to his and rolling them over so that his body covered hers.


Clarisse moaned as Joseph broke off the kiss and began raining soft kisses along her throat in a leisurely exploration, using his lips and hands to touch and caress every inch of her that he could reach.


“Joseph…”  It came out a breathy gasp as his hot mouth closed around her nipple, teasing and whirling the rosy tip with his tongue; his fingers tracing circles around her other breast until he moved and took that nipple in his mouth too, applying the same sweet torture.


Her hands gripped his shoulders as he moved lower, pressing a series of open mouthed kisses in a sensuous trail down her body, pausing to outline her navel with his tongue, which caused Clarisse to giggle and shift under him.  Joseph raised his head and met her eyes, flashing her a smile before continuing on his erotic journey.


Clarisse watched through lidded eyes as Joseph caressed, kissed and licked his way down her legs; grasping her ankle and pressing soft kisses to each of her toes, while gently massaging the soles.  When he finished with her feet, he leisurely made his way back up her legs in the same manner, his hands and lips caressing her now highly sensitized flesh.


When he came to the patch of glistening auburn curls at the juncture of her thighs, Joseph raised his head to meet her eyes, noting that they’d grown even darker with desire.  He smiled at her before he lowered his head, pausing for a moment to inhale the sweet scent of her arousal then pressed his mouth against her.


He moaned as her flavour washed over his tongue and flooded his senses.




Joseph smiled inwardly as she cried out his name again, feeling her reach out and clasp his head, holding him to her, as he loved her with his mouth.


“Oh God…” Clarisse moaned again, arching her body against him as he slid first one finger inside her and then another.  Feelings and sensations unlike anything she had ever felt before shot through her body.  “…Jo… seph!”


Joseph continued to move his fingers inside her slick passage, his mouth and tongue swirling and teasing the sensitive bundle of nerves, until he felt her body begin to tremble, her inner muscles beginning to spasm around his thrusting fingers.


“Joseph?”  Clarisse suddenly gasped and lifted her head off of the pillow as his mouth ceased its pleasurable ministrations to her swollen flesh. 


Joseph simply smiled, raising his head slightly as he reached out with his free hand, his right hand still moving slowly within her body, and clasped hers from where it was clenching the blankets, entwining their fingers.


Clarisse returned his smile as he gave her hand a gentle squeeze and then moaned as he once again lowered his head, his mouth resuming its earlier pleasurable torture.


“Mmm… Jo…” she moaned loudly, pressing herself against him as he intensified the pressure of his mouth against her; increasing the speed of his fingers within her.  “Oh… God… Joseph!”  Clarisse suddenly cried out his name as her body tensed and arched off the bed; a tidal wave of pleasure washing over her; leaving her drowning in a sea of sensations.


Joseph groaned as Clarisse’s juices flowed around his fingers into his palm.  He withdrew his fingers and lowered his mouth to her opening, consuming her essence as if dying of thirst.  His fingers moved to her clitoris, circling the sensitive bundle in a bid to prolong her release.


“…Jos… eph… oh God… no more… I can’t… I… oooh…” Clarisse panted as she felt the sensations grow within her again, threatening to overwhelm her with their intensity.


“Come, Clarisse…” Joseph murmured against her.  “Come for me… let me have more of you…”


“I… Joseph…” Clarisse shook her head against the pillow.


“You can…” Joseph told her.  He thrust his tongue deeply inside her and pressed a little harder on her clit with his thumb.  “Come, my love…”






“OH GOD JOOSEPH!”  Clarisse screamed his name as she came again.  She felt the rush of her juices leave her body and heard Joseph’s appreciative groan as he attacked her with a voracious appetite.  Her body went limp with satisfaction.


With a last loving kiss against her, Joseph slowly began to once again kiss his way up her trembling body; raining kisses over her breasts and trailing his lips up her throat to cover her mouth with his in a deep, burning kiss as he settled his body against hers.


Clarisse pulled back from the kiss, her eyes wide as she licked her lips.


“That’s you…” Joseph told her as he kissed her again.  “I love the taste of you, my queen…”


Clarisse moaned as he covered her mouth again, their tongues tangling madly.


As they kissed, Joseph slipped his free hand between their bodies, wrapped it around his throbbing member, and brought it to her waiting entrance, stroking the head along her sex to coat his length with her juices.  He broke off the kiss, and locked his eyes with hers then with a slowness that belied the urgency he was feeling, Joseph sank into her welcoming warmth, her raised knees cradling his hips.


They moaned together as their bodies finally joined as one.  Joseph smiled down at her, the love he felt for her, shining in his deep, blue eyes.  With a gentle squeeze of their still entwined hands, Joseph lowered his mouth for a loving kiss.


Clarisse slid her free hand up over his shoulder and around his neck, pulling him closer, wanting to feel his body completely against hers.  She moaned softly at the feel of his firm chest against her breasts, the soft hairs tickling and caressing the sensitive flesh.


Joseph raised and rested their entwined hands on the mattress above their heads, his other hand slipping beneath her body to grasp her shoulder as he began to slowly thrust his hips against her.


“Joseph…” Clarisse breathed against his lips at his gentle movements.


At her soft utterance of his name, Joseph raised his head and felt as if he was going to drown in the desire and love he saw swimming in her dark, passion-filled eyes.  “Clarisse…” he moaned softly as she moved beneath him, meeting his gentle thrusts.


Slowly, they began to move together, establishing a leisurely rhythm; both content to love each other slowly, savouring the sensations of this first joining.  Their eyes remained locked; communicating far more than mere words ever could, sharing the whisperings of their souls.


Clarisse’s hand moved up and down Joseph’s back, her fingers trailing along his spine as she arched into him, wanting more as the feelings and sensations flowing through her body began to grow.  “Joseph…”


Joseph smiled and lowered his lips to hers, kissing her softly but with growing passion as he altered their rhythm, rolling his hips against hers before beginning to thrust more fully against her.


Breaking away from the kiss with a gasp, Clarisse moaned her approval and arched beneath him, matching his new rhythm with ease.  She gazed up at him, and felt her heart skip a beat as her eyes locked with his, the passion, desire, the want and need, but most especially the love shining in his cerulean depths, reaching out and enveloping her soul.


Joseph gazed deeply into Clarisse’s eyes as he continued to stroke deep within her, the emotions blazing in her dark, sable depths humbling him to his very core.  The desire and passion he knew was mirrored in his own eyes, as well as his want and his need for her.  But it was the trust.  The trust and love shining bright in her eyes that captured his heart, wrapping him in a warmth unlike any he’d felt before.


“Clarisse…” her name was a breathless moan as he felt his control begin to slip; the slow, steady pace he’d been keeping becoming too much and too hard to maintain.  “My queen… I…”


“I know.”  She replied in an equally breathless voice, shifting beneath him.


Joseph moaned as she instinctively wrapped her legs around his waist, the change in the angle of her hips allowing him to move deeper within her.  “God, Clarisse,” he groaned again, burying his face in her neck as she tightened her legs and pulled him closer while she arched beneath him and thrust her hips up against him.


Clarisse felt a shudder pass through his body and responded in kind when he released her hand, sliding his between their bodies, his fingers unerringly finding and stroking the small, sensitive bundle that would take her over the edge.


“Joseph…” she cried out as he continued stroking her with his fingers, keeping time with the now frantic thrusting of his hips.  “Oh… oh… God!”  Clarisse gasped, the coil of arousal being wound beneath his busy fingers letting go and spiraling out of control.  “Joseph!”


Joseph lifted his head, and held himself still deep within her, as her orgasm washed over her; his fingers still dancing over her sensitive flesh, drawing out her release as her body quivered beneath his.  He watched as Clarisse flew apart, his name a mantra on her lips, and then slowly came back together in his arms.


Clarisse opened her eyes, not realizing she’d closed them, to see Joseph gazing down at her, an expression of awe and utter love on his face.  “Joseph,” she smiled up at him, and then feeling the strain in his body as he held back his release, she ran her hands down his back and tightened her legs around him.  “Let go, Joseph.”


With her words, Joseph slipped his arms beneath her and grasped her shoulders, burying his face in her neck as he began to move heavily against her, driving himself deep into her welcoming body.  It wasn’t long before he felt the telltale signs of his release tingling down his spine, the tightening low in his stomach that told him he was close.  With a hoarse cry that was her name, his hips jerked convulsively against her and then he was lost in the tidal wave of his orgasm.


Clarisse sighed happily, her arms tightening around Joseph as he sank bonelessly into her embrace; his panting breath warm against her skin.  She eased her legs from around his waist, sliding them down along his legs.


“I love you.”


Clarisse smiled, turning her head to brush a kiss against his temple at his murmured words.  “I love you too.”


They lay, still entwined for several long minutes, in a comfortable silence as their hearts and their breathing slowly returned to normal.


Joseph leisurely kissed a trail up along her throat to her mouth, covering her lips in a sweet, loving kiss.  Breaking off the kiss, he gazed down at her, losing himself in her luminous gaze.


“Oh, Joseph… thank you… I never knew… that was so… incredible… thank you,” Clarisse told him in a shaky voice, her eyes bright with unshed tears.


Joseph smiled down at her.  “You’re welcome, my love.”


“My love…” Clarisse echoed.  “Oh, Joseph… I do love you… so much.”


“I know.  I love you too.”


“This won’t be easy.”


“Nothing worth having ever is.”


“But we’ll find a way.”


“We will indeed.”


“This is the best birthday I’ve had in years… and I received the one gift I wanted more than anything.”


Joseph arched an eyebrow questioningly.


“You… you and your love,” Clarisse told him with a smile.


“You have always had it.  Both me and my love… and you always will.”  Joseph told her as he lowered his head to give her a gentle kiss.


“Happy birthday, my darling.”






The meanings behind the colours of the roses Joseph gave Clarisse…


Peach - Appreciation, Let’s Get Together, Sincerity, Gratitude (in this case, we were going for appreciation)


Peachy-Pink – Admiration, Appreciation, Gratitude, Sympathy (in this case, we were going for admiration)


Yellow – Joy, Gladness, Freedom, Friendship, I care, Welcome back, Remember me, Jealousy (in this case, we were going for joy, gladness and friendship)


Red-Yellow – Jovial and happy feelings (I think this one says it all!! LOL)


Red – True love, Romantic love, Respect, Courage, Congratulations, Job well done and, I love you (in this case… true love, romantic love, and yes… I love you)


Also, touching a given rose to one’s lips implies ‘Yes’…  (we will have noted that Clarisse touched every rose to her lips…)




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