Fear Of Flying, Part 5

(by kalithanatos, 28 December 2009)


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Fear of Flying
by kalithanatos
CHAPTER FIVE

The next day, Wednesday, Janet again made the long drive to work and again
got stuck in traffic. After about half an hour of crawling along at a snails
pace, a car pulled up next to her. The vehicle had two women in it, and both
of them were smoking and laughing. Janet watched in envy as the each took
massive drags of their cigarettes and exhaled the smoke out of their
respective windows. She suddenly felt an intense craving, and decided there
was only one thing to do about it. Rolling her window down, she attracted the
attention of the passenger in the other car.

"Excuse me, I don't suppose I could have one of those?" she asked.

"Sure, no problem," the passenger replied, reaching into her pocket and
extracting her cigarettes. She pulled one out and passed it to Janet, who had
already pushed in the car lighter in anticipation. "Thanks," she said, as the
lighter popped and she lit up, savouring the cool smoke.

"Looks like you needed that!" the driver shouted over.

"Yes, I forgot to lift mine this morning," Janet lied.

"Tell you what," the passenger said, "it looks like we might be here for a
while. Why don't you have the rest of the pack? We've got enough to last us
over here."

"Would you mind?" Janet asked. "I don't know how I would get through this
without being able to smoke!" and for the first time, she realised she meant
it. She felt she WAS a smoker, or at least damn close to one. The passenger
passed the rest of the pack over and Janet thanked her. Looking inside, she
saw six all white cigarettes, all for her pleasure. She looked forward to
being able to smoke each and every one of them.

Janet thanked the two women and a short time later their cars drifted apart.
Janet had smoked the first cigarette quickly to fuel her thirst, and
immediately lit the next. She smoked this one at a more leisurely pace, yet
again watching herself in the mirror and enjoying how sexy she looked.

Eventually, traffic started moving again and Janet reckoned she had time for
one more cigarette before arriving at her work. This time, she rolled the
windows of the car up to allow the car to fill with luxurious smoke, meaning
she had to use the ashtray for the first time. She also started to get used
to driving whilst smoking, now that the traffic was free flowing once again
and after a few moments of awkwardness, mastered this too.

When she arrived at her office, she doused herself in perfume to mask the
smell and got down to business. An hour later, she heard a tap at her window
and saw Michelle gesturing with her handbag. Knowing what this meant, she
grabbed her own bag and hurried out after Michelle towards what they had
started calling `their alley'. Both women lit up simultaneously and made a
satisfying "aah" noise as they exhaled. They got to chatting, and found they
had a lot in common with each other, despite the age gap. Janet decided she
rather liked Michelle and that, all being well, they might end up being good
friends. They smoked two cigarettes each and went back upstairs, agreeing to
go out for lunch together later in the day.

At lunchtime, the two women went for a pub lunch in a little street nearby.
As Janet opened her packet of cigarettes, she realised she would only have
one left after smoking this one. A decision now had to be made - was she
going to continue smoking? If she was, it meant buying her own cigarettes,
something she had not yet done. Her mind was made up as Michelle lit first
her own cigarette then offered to light Janet's. Leaning forward to accept
the light, she looked at Michelle's face and saw the pleasure and relief she
felt at being able to smoke, then the flame touched her own cigarette and she
too felt what Michelle was feeling. She inhaled deeply, much more so than any
time previously, and held the smoke in her lungs for an eternity before
exhaling. The sensation was wonderful, and she continued to smoke that way
until the cigarette was done. 

The food arrived shortly after, and as both women finished their meals,
Michelle reached for her cigarettes.

"This is the best time to smoke," she said, lighting up, "straight after a
meal. Well, actually, second best - the best time is right after sex!"

Janet, who had never smoked straight after food, lit up her last cigarette
and said after a couple of drags, "Well, I don't know about the sex part, but
I agree - smoking after food is fantastic!"

After their meal, on the way back to the office, they passed a local
convenience store. Taking the plunge, Janet said, "Would you mind if I
stopped off in here? I'm out of cigarettes."

"No problem," Michelle replied, reaching into her handbag. "Gives me time for
another before we get back!"

Janet entered the store and headed for the tobacco counter. She was awestruck
by the variety of cigarettes on show. She had never really thought about it
before, but there were a lot of different types and brands of cigarettes to
choose from - king size, superkings, menthol, lights, full flavour, Marlboro,
Richmond, Berkeley, the choices seemed endless. She had now tried three
different types of cigarette - the Berkeley menthols Fiona and Beth had given
her, the Benson & Hedges full flavour Michelle had borrowed from Sarah, and
the Marlboro Lights the two women in the car that morning had passed her. She
decided she had enjoyed the Berkeley the most, and stepping up to the counter
she boldly stated, "Twenty Berkeley menthol and a box of extra strong
Tic-Tacs, please." As she got out her money to pay, she noticed Michelle
smoking outside and turned back to the counter.

"Can I also have twenty Benson & Hedges, please? Oh, and a disposable
lighter, too?" she finished, remembering she had no way of lighting her own
cigarettes.

Her goods paid, she put the Tic-Tacs and receipt in her handbag and headed
back outside. 

"For you," she said, tossing the gold pack of cigarettes towards Michelle,
"for all the ones I bummed off you yesterday."

"Thanks!" Michelle said, catching the packet, "But remember, Sarah gave me
those."

"That's right, so she did," Janet responded. "Well, make sure she gets them,
then."

"No problem," Michelle said, "I will." With that, both women made their way
back to the office.

At around 2 o'clock, Janet started to feel a nagging feeling in her head, and
as she looked through her bag for her Tic-Tacs, she noticed the still
unopened cigarettes she had not long bought. She ran that through her mind
again; HER cigarettes. Like a kid with a new toy, she couldn't wait to rip
the cellophane off the pack and light the very first cigarette she bought
with her own money.

Eagerly grabbing her jacket, Janet raced towards Michelle's desk. "Fancy a
break?" she asked Michelle. 

"In a minute,"  Michelle replied, holding her phone in her hand, "I'm on hold
just now. Why don't you go down to `our alley' and I'll meet you?"

"Okay," Janet replied, turning towards the exit, and racing down the stairs
in anticipation of that first sweet drag.

A few minutes later, just as Janet was finishing her first cigarette and
about to light another, she heard voices. Startled, she looked up and saw
Michelle rounding the corner (looking a little guilty) with Sarah in close
attendance.

"So this is where you two have been sneaking off to?" Sarah said, reaching
for her cigarettes in her jacket pocket.

"Sorry," Michelle mouthed to Janet. "I was trying to give her the cigarettes
back you gave me earlier and she started asking lots of questions. I'm afraid
I buckled under the pressure!"

Realizing the jig was up, Janet lit her cigarette and said to Michelle, "It's
okay, don't worry about it. I guess people were going to find out sooner or
later..."

"That's the spirit!" Sarah piped in. "Always good to have another smoker on
board. Two, if you count Michelle!"

And just like that, Janet was now accepted as a smoker by two of her peers.


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