It was my first day of work at these new offices and I promised myself that I would try to make it work out. Little did I know what a surprise I had in store.

Going up the stairs to my new office with one of the secretaries, I could see a young woman kneeling, picking up some paper that had slipped from the sheaf in her hand .

It was an amazing sight. Her slim body gave me a hint of swan-like gracefulness, jeans tight over her curved backside. I stared at her, not wanting to break what seemed like a magic spell.

‘Ah… Katie, here’s your new quality technician. His name’s Jake. I’m sure you’ll get along fine.’

And with that short intro I was left staring as the woman continued picking her work from the floor. I knelt down beside her to give her a hand. I got a first glimpse of her face and I swear I nearly died. She wasn’t what you would call beautiful, but her visage was like that of something I could not define. It would be quite difficult to describe her.

Her face lit up in a sunny smile, ‘Welcome… I’m Katie. We’ll be sharing an office.’

“Hi, I’m Jake.’ I said as I offered my hand.

Her touch was nice and soft, but she had a firm handshake, which boded well. I followed her to our office. It wasn’t big by any standard, barely enough to hold a couple of desks, but the views from the windows were something out of a dream. The countryside spread beneath us in glorious shades of green and gold.

‘Lovely isn’t it?’ the girl said in hushed tones. It was indeed a gorgeous sight, but what I really had in mind and looking at, was not the view but the girl herself.

‘Yeah. It’s…truly beautiful’, I replied, with embarrassment clearly etched on my face.

We really got on well together, and after some time began to get friendlier with one another. She was single, surprisingly, and not really looking for romance. We would see about that, I thought.

By the time the break had arrived I was itching for a cigarette, but all thought was swept away as Katie got up, turned her back to me and pulled her sweater over her head in one quick swoop.

Once she looked back I stared at her small chest, ensconced in a training bra. “Had a good look?” she asked with a smile.

“Uh. I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to stare. You just took me by surprise there. Are you feeling hot?”

“No you ninny, I’m off for a run during the hour break.” she replied.

“Oh that’s good. I might come and keep you company tomorrow.” I told her, reminding myself that i had not seen a track in 5 years, let alone run. She bid me goodbye and skipped nimbly out of the office.

She returned in forty minutes, all sweaty and flushed.

“I simply got to have a shower now. Back in five minutes . She was as good as her word and returned quite quickly .

“Would you mind if I come with you tomorrow?” I asked.

“No, not at all. It will be nice to have somebody to talk to.”

We left it at that since there was so much for me to learn. That evening I was looking for my old running shoes in the closet, remembering the feeling of being alive that only comes from a good run.

The next day I was all tingling with anticipation, and my beautiful colleague could see that my mind was not entirely on the work at hand.

Well, the time finally arrived and I was treated again to the really erotic sight of Katie pulling off her jumper, tight body moving sensuously. I pulled my sweater over my head, reveling in the brush of the cotton over my chest. As the garment slid over my head, I could see my new friend eyeing me out of the corner of her eyes.

Well, well, I thought, this might get interesting. We made our way outside and warmed up for a couple of minutes before starting on our run.

Needless to say I was soon panting in agony, my breath feeling like spouts of fire through my throat.

Katie realized I was well out of shape and slowed down her pace, until I could get my second wind. Naturally this took more time than expected and I realized that the run wouldn’t be that long today. Between gasps however, I could really appreciate the country lanes we were passing through. Low walls and high hedges protected the green fields from intrusion. It was all so peaceful.

Katie pulled up to a tree, barely breaking into sweat.

“We’ll rest here a bit before heading back. Seems like you need it. ” she told me while using the tree trunk to stretch her muscles.

I could only nod my head in agreement. Hell, I could hardly speak. My throat was dry, and I was really thankful for the small bottle of water I had brought with me.

Within three minutes I was coherent again.

“Thanks for taking it easy on me”

“Hey, no problems buddy. As long as we are going to be in the same office, we might as well be friends.” she answered with a smile on her face.

Because it was her whole face that was smiling, not just her lips. That really melted me I can tell you. The days at work passed quickly enough in her company. And why not? She was a hard-working, pleasant and intelligent young woman. The fact that she was single was a point in my favour. I was also unattached, and despite not looking for romance, felt the first pangs of interest drawing us together.

From her side I think that she only started to get close a little to me after some weeks. She was friendly enough, with that little extra intimacy thrown in for good measure.

Pretty soon we were nigh on inseparable, enjoying our daily jog and improving our work quality immeasurably. This reflected in an increase in our wages, and we celebrated this occasion with our first sort of date together. It was not actually a date, but simply a run together in the evening.

We met at the start of the old promenade around seven. The night was warm enough for us to not bother with tracksuits but use the usual running attire. I forgot to breathe when I saw her. The hammering in my chest reminded me to take control of my senses. Katie was wearing light coloured cycling shorts and an orange training bra that screamed ‘look at me’.

Dammit I was falling hard for her. I greeted her with a hug, and noticed that she also gripped me firmly. After a few stretches and a short warming up routine, we got on our way. Following the first few weeks I had regained my fitness a bit and could keep up with her easily.

We settled into an easy jog, reserving our strength for the return trip.

We barely talked in the beginning until our breaths settled. Then once we got our second wind we started to talk in earnest. I found that she was the eldest of two sisters, the younger one called Tracy. Sadly I found that the reason she was single was that her husband-to-be had perished in an automobile accident.

“His car was swiped sideways by a drunken lorry driver. He lay in a coma for three weeks before passing away..” . Her voice broke at this point. “He died on Valentine’s day. The cruelest day one could hope to lose all one held sacred. All our love, dreams, and hopes…blown away by a drunk.”

I felt so sorry for her…but what could I possibly say to console her?

“I’m so sorry to hear this. I wish we never got into this conversation.”

She smiled sadly then, tears in her eyes as she continued running.

“It’s not your fault my friend. Don’t try to take the blame for something you never had a part in. And that is maybe why sometimes you may see me so distant or fragile. I want you to understand that…”

I stopped then, emotion welling in my heart. This lovely young woman had an aching need in her heart, ready to be filled up. Could I be the one to do the job? God knows I had slowly fallen in love with her. My heart told me not to be selfish though. She stopped as soon as she did not hear my pounding on the pavement. I could tell from the look on her face that she knew what i was thinking.

“Jake I can imagine what you are thinking, and the same thoughts are going through my head. Lately, thanks to your friendship, I have finally been able to sleep without medication. You have neither asked nor expected anything from me. You have not even flirted with me, like many men do. For that I am truly grateful, for it is an honest friendship. Let’s not rush things. We are both enjoying life at the moment, let’s go slowly. Who knows what might happen…”

She was right, and I certainly could find no reason to doubt her. Somehow I just felt that we had more than a good chance of finally getting together.

“Kate, now that you have brought this up I feel that I must tell you something. I’m sure that I am falling in love with you. I was too scared to admit it to myself even, but every time we are together at work, time seems to go so fast. I feel so happy. But I respect your wishes. I will not bring this up again, I promise. As you say, things might happen.”

She turned to me then. Her face awash with tears and sweat, and gave me a fierce hug. Our faces were close together and our lips brushed each other lightly. ‘This is it,’ I thought. Our first kiss. But it was not to be, as she pulled back.

“Thanks for understanding. It has been only just over a year since Mike died. I thought I would never get over his death, but you have brought me new hope. Time will tell. Come on, we still have five miles to run!”

With that, she let go of my arms and we turned to continue our run.

The End.

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