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An interview with Freddie La Salle – hero from Combat, for the Passion Patrol.
It’s not that I don’t like other women. I just don’t like another woman around a man that I’m around. Ten females around an attractive male is no problem. There’s always going to be some trollop hanging everything out, or some cool fashion type in porn-star specs, or even worse, someone about twenty-five years younger with forward facing equipment. In those cases I can stand back and enjoy the politics or, if I’m lucky, a good old cat fight. The other rejects and I unite to despise the active players and kind of enjoy the sense of detached superiority. If there’s just me and some other female and she’s getting all the attention, that’s personal. I want to talk to Freddie La Salle and I’d far rather do it alone. I just need the right sort of opportunity. So, let me explain what’s happening. A while ago I met Deputy Assistant Commissioner Anna La Salle in her office at Scotland Yard. It’s high summer and hot. She’s in uniform for the TV cameras. London is under threat of serious terror and I mean bad. Confidentially she tells me she’s playing it down but she’s not sleeping at night. Above her head the bosses right up to the royals are letting a situation develop in an attempt to scoop some big fish. There’s firearms and explosives on the street and Anna’s keeping a calm front, waiting for the horror she hopes will never happen.
“So where are you living?” I ask, not mentioning her husband Freddie.
“It’s a flat in Belgravia. I’m usually working until midnight and we brief the government every morning at 6.30.”
“It’s lucky Freddie still has his Michelin star restaurant in Sloane Square.”
Anna gave a wry snort.
“The restaurant is there but he’s in France. There’s four hundred acres of Champagne vines, two kids and an orchestra of cockerels, goats, geese and donkeys.”
Bloody hell, this poor woman is alone with all her power and anxiety. She was always ambitious but she’s paying a price.
“You must miss him.”
“Yeah I do but you know, emotionally it’s easier this way. He’s not a cop and has no security clearance. If he were here I couldn’t share much with him and that’s a block between partners.”
“So who does he talk to?”
“He’s got friends and he’s got a lot of business in France. He’s a TV pundit for two boxing channels and believe me he still works out and gives the wives and girlfriends a little tremble when he demonstrates technique.”
“Do you trust him? Do you trust them?”
She pulled her lips tight to her perfect teeth, running her hand across her brow. Her eyes flicked to mine to catch my tone.
“Yeah, but he’s a very sexy guy. You know – the tank fills up. You know Emma.”
“So, you can handle that?”
“He handles it and we’ve got video calls. Look, Emma, it’s a release and to be frank – you know….It’s not so much me – it’s his desire for me that’s so hot.”
“You like it. Hell, I’d like it.”
“Look I’m a human being. Please – you’re the only person I could talk to like this.”
“I’m happy you’re both coping physically.”
She got up and walked to her window overlooking Westminster Bridge and the Thames. She spoke quickly with a spontaneity not natural to her.
“Emma, could you pop over and check him out? Tell him whatever you like as long as he gets the message that I love him so much.”
“Me? Do you want a report sent back?”
In truth my heart is hammering. It had been my strategy to see if she was tied up in London. I’d planned to suggest casually that I was having a short break in Paris. I’d never touch another woman’s husband but Freddie La Salle is hotter now than he was seven years ago. I can build a library of fantasy just being around that guy. And he’s xxxxxxx years my junior.
“You’re perfect. He loves you, he reads all your books.”
“He loves me?”
“Like a sister or mother even.”
“Like a mother who writes sex scenes to turn him on?”
“Like an older woman, you know….”
I smile. This older woman might surprise her. Believe me girls you just never have to stop if you like it. Never! And I get mail from women with thirty years on me.
“You mean some neutral female input from someone outside the ring?”
“I’ll fix a Eurostar ticket,” I reply with a deliberate flatness.
“There’s a Queen’s flight for a lot of top brass from Northolt at 2 o’clock. I was hoping to fly out but there’s been a vehicle attack on Parliament. Take my place. I’ll arrange the clearance and send my car to your address.”
We shoot a thick power espresso, kiss and dive back into the swirl of London town. I’ve got a bag to pack.
The black government Jaguar XF, the direct drive to the steps of the aircraft, the sexy colonel seated next to me who’d read my books – man this was a dream. Paris Charles de Gaulle airport, a gendarme driver of a grand Peugeot 5008 with a French flag on the hood opening the door and speeding me towards the famous Champagne region. I’d only ever glimpsed this life in books, but it could sweep me up. The land is flat and lined with grape vines. There are distant castles and swoop of swallows in the still air of evening. At last we take a gravel road to a grand farmhouse which in England we’d call a Manor. There are outbuildings of stone with roofs bowed like the back of an old horse. A boy of about five is playing with a puppy. I step out of the car. This must be their son Xavier. God, he was just starting to walk when I last saw him. The French government car pulls away and I’m a stupid English woman with a goose about to peck my suitcase, or me, or both. This animal looks dangerous.
“Over here – Emma, just walk away,” called an oddly-accented male voice.
I look towards the voice. Monsieur Freddie La Salle one time cruiserweight champion of the world is standing in the wide entrance to a barn. He’s wearing tight blue cut-off jeans. Yes, that’s what he’s wearing. His pecs, lats and abs are pumped and glistening. There’s something reforming the shape of his zipper. Something masculine. He’s tanned and smiling, laughing at a London townie fleeing from a homicidal goose. He steps forward, shoos my attacker and reaches his hand to my shoulder. He kisses my cheek, catching my eye with a soft look as he crosses to kiss the other. This bastard is a teaser. I love it. I can feel his body heat, smell his fresh man sweat. There’s that flicker in me. I can’t help it. I want to touch those triceps just to feel their hardness. I mean some men are bastards but that testosterone is horny stuff.
“My dear Emma, I feel so bad. Anna phoned to say she couldn’t make it and I was really pissed you know. I decided to work out to burn off the heat. Then she calls to say you’re coming. Just like that I’m smiling again. It almost feels like infidelity.”
I look at that very smile, mainly in his dark eyes. He’s a bloody god to look at. There’s just no way I’d leave him on the loose. Anna must be so sure of their relationship. There’s a couple of crows’ feet at the corners of his eyes now. His tan accentuates the scar on his brow that Anna first noticed. His nose is maybe broadened a little by the boxing. This guy sure still has his bull credentials and I’m trying not to look at them in those cut off jeans. The waistband just hints a thickening of hair where his flat belly disappears under the denim. Look, I don’t have to tell you my reaction to him but the fact is that life is chemistry, OK? Right now I’m loving that test tube feeling. I’m just happy looking and smelling.
“Freddie, I’m a poor substitute for Anna.”
“Everyone’s a poor substitute for Anna because there’s only one. You’re looking so good at being you Emma.”
OK, this is someone else’s man. I’m fif..blah blah and he must be thirty-nine now. He was expecting his gorgeous wife, probably holding back his pressing desire to let go with her. Now he’s looking at me. I’m wearing a summer floral sleeveless dress, the neckline showcasing my normal presentation. His eyes politely take in my form without any lingering – well only a little maybe – nothing to call the cops about.
“So, you have a gym in the barn?”
“Yeah, I fought at cruiserweight and that’s about where I try to stay.”
His voice still has that American accent, sexily mixed in with the French. I’m happy to talk generally.
“Is the upper weight limit still 200 pounds?”
“That’s it and I’m six feet three inches. I was 195 pounds for the Brennan fight.”
“You don’t look any different. Did you never want to fight again?”
“No, Anna was in my life and I promised her it was over.”
“But, did you ever ever regret that?”
“Not the fights but the training and the build up, the guys in the gym and all that trash with stare-downs with the other guy for the cameras. It’s show-biz Emma and it gets into your blood.”
We’d walked into the barn. There was a weight bench. The seat and back support were still wet where he’d been training.
“I broke up your work-out. If you’ve got up a head of steam and need to release the pressure,” I say with a grin.
“Ten minutes OK – there’s Champagne on ice in the fridge if you want to go across to the house?”
“I could tolerate ten minutes.”
He grinned back, straddled the bench and reached up for the overhead bar. I stood looking towards his tree trunk thighs, each muscle defined. His torso rippled as he pushed up, throwing the bar away from him as if it were nothing. With every thrust his buttocks tightened pushing his groin bulge up and tight inside his shorts. To be honest I could have been very naughty if I hadn’t been a mature lady with a shy nature. I pulled out my cell and took a ten second video. He saw me and pushed the weights with one hand, giving me a wave with the other. The summer evening was settling and the warm air was still. He grunted a little with each lift as the smell of his sweat deepened and troubled me more and more. I’m sorry, but smell is a big thing for me. It’s like a switch and I cannot help it, OK. So there’s this hunk, thrusting and groaning and I’m watching like I’m supposed to be like a tree or something. There’s some heat in the fire and if he doesn’t soon stop there’s going to smoke coming out of my chimney. Look, he knows what he’s doing and it’s only a tease. I can’t imagine I’m ever going to be in a situation like this again. Who needs fantasy? He can’t possibly know that I’m bursting to pull out that cock and finish what he’s started in me.
He stopped at last and slumped forward.
“Can you throw me a towel Emma.”
I go to a table laid out with water and fresh white towels. I walk back to hand it to him. You know, I’m really girlie at throwing stuff so I have to get close. He’s still seated, his eyes at my breast level. He reaches across his front to wipe across the opposite shoulder. His upper arm is rock hard bicep and tricep. I mean rock hard with curve and power. Like this is sculpture. Like it’s not like touching someone else’s husband it’s like touching a work of art. I couldn’t help it – I just had to feel that hot iron, so close to my breast. I’m biting my lip, I’m holding my floor muscles so tight. I have to stand back and smile.
“I just had to see what that felt like. I’m interested in sport science,” I say, aroused, embarrassed, orgasmic, ashamed, ecstatic. The feel of that flesh will never leave my memory. Never.
“That’s cool, it’s not my heart or my soul. That would be a no no.”
“So can I touch again?”
“Maybe better not unless you want to dry off my back.”
I take the towel and get him to turn. The thickness of his neck and the bulge of his shoulder muscles are a thrill to contemplate, let alone touch. I take my time.
“You’re gentle,” he says.
I don’t tell him I feel like ripping off his shorts and making his cock beg for my release. See that helpless abandoned flood. I should stop this right now. But I don’t.
“Anna told me you’ve read my books,” I say casually, looking down his rippled abs to his bulge.
“Did she? Did she say what I thought of them?”
“Not too much….maybe you don’t like them.”
He gave a deep sexy chuckle. I drape the towel over his shoulder and run my hand down his lats.
“You’re so gentle,” he repeats with a lingering longing sigh in his voice
“I’m an art lover.”
He stands on the other side of the bench, towelling off his chest. I look down and I can see he loved my art too. He fixes his gaze on my face, knowing where my attention is. He runs his hands down to his waistband, tucks them just inside. What’s he going to do? Please do it. Please don’t do it. He discreetly settles his portfolio of assets and smiles.
“Shower, Champagne and a lovely woman to share my dinner. I’m a lucky man.”
He comes to my side, throws an arm and around me and escorts me to the house. That was so so close. I’ve never cheated but dear Lord….
He toasts my good health, sips his glass and leaves me with a bottle of Veuve La Salle premier cru Champagne. The lounge is beautiful with exposed wood and crazy angled walls and doors. The floor is flagstones with a riot of rugs. The ceiling has curved wooden beams and old weird farm tools hanging on rusty iron rings. Designers try and fake this look but this is the real stuff. I pour a second glass. Leaving a novelist alone with a bottle of wine is like leaving your dog alone with a week’s supply of food. Temptation has always been an issue for me. I need all my strength for my books so I never waste it on futile struggles with things like Champagne or chocolate.
When Freddie comes back I’m a bit mellow. He smells spicy. He’s wearing a blue shirt and beautifully cut dark gray pants. In clothes, his shoulders look even broader. His hair is swept back and still wet. A strand falls across his forehead and I want to push it back. Mother response? Cougar? I’m drunk. He offers me his hand and leads me through to an open terrace looking out on the fields of vines. He’s a foot taller than me for god’s sake.
“I thought we could eat out here. Yvette is doing something with Reims ham and truffles.”
I look up at him. No, I would not let this guy wander about on his own. He looks down at me. Kiss me. Make me do it. He doesn’t. I’m glad. Kind of. A woman brings through smoked salmon and more Champagne. This could get messy. I sip my newly filled glass.
“Do you still collect art Freddie?”
“Not so much, I’m out of Paris and away from the action.”
“Is your Courbet collection still at le Musee d’Orsay?”
“Yes, you can’t look after paintings like that yourself in a place like this.”
“And you still have “L’Origine du Monde?”
“It will always be my favorite view Emma. I can never see it without thinking of you. That beauty will always be the origin of the world – at least the world of humanity.”
We savour the salmon and some more Champagne.
“Anna’s got a lot of responsibility these days,” I say, not sure where I want this to go.
“Yeah, that’s a fact. She deceived me when we met but after that I knew she was a cop. I still loved her even so.”
“It’s harder to love a cop than some other woman?”
“The worst would be a writer. You’d never know what’s true. A cop – well it’s a timeshare. They love hard because they know the truth and the uncertainty of life.”
“Are you OK alone?”
“That’s a very direct question Emma.”
“If I can’t ask you who can?”
“That’s true. Well it’s complicated. A divided relationship like this would be best if I didn’t love her. Some relationships survive just because they’re so ordinary. Because I’m still a man in love I’m still a man with love to give. Love revs you up and it’s a big motor. When she gets home and we’re together there’s a lot of heat.”
“Have you ever been tempted Freddie?”
He nodded and looked away from me. I wanted to reach out to him. I’d started this and he needed to talk. I poured another glass. Sod it.
“A writer’s true emotional life is with her characters. Did you know that?”
He nodded again and turned his tanned male face back to me. So male. So male.
“I always felt that way when I was with you.”
“I wanted you to find your own way, your own girl and pull off your ambitions. You were a risky guy when I first met you.”
“Anna’s the risk-taker now.”
For a moment I reflected on his response. There was a wistful jealousy there. Did I want to open this guy up? I could get involved here. He was my first. I can’t deny him the truth about myself.
“Freddie, when we were together – you know every day in those days, I had a lot of love to give like you now and I had no one. You were the man I wanted. Then you met that girl in that taxi and I knew straight away she’d take you away.”
“I remember those first days together Emma. God, I couldn’t even keep the same accent.”
“I remember that too.”
I vaguely stretched out my hand and he took it. This was wrong but hell it felt so good. Don’t even think of moving closer to kiss me. Please kiss me. His cell phone was ringing. I knew who this would be. I let go of his hand.
“You were my first.” I said.
Find out more about Anna and Freddie’s romance in ‘Combat’ available in e-book, print and audiobook here
If you’ve got any additional questions for Freddie, I’m staying overnight, so fire away in the comments below…
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