I find a quiet table to sit at, thinking that I should go. I’ve seen him and that was what I wanted but it will never be enough for me. Watching him now – surrounded by his family and assorted admirers – I die a little inside, as I realise that we truly are from different worlds. He is laughing, throwing his head back, revealing those wolfish teeth and THAT devastating smile.
I hunt in my bag for my phone to call a taxi and as I do, I think maybe I’ll just take one quick picture. I know he loves his fans and is always happy to pose for them but I can’t help thinking that this may be a too much of an intrusion. I steady my hand and just as I click to take the shot, he turns and looks directly at me. I fumble the phone and drop it under the table, embarrassment heating my chest and cheeks. I disappear beneath the table to retrieve my phone and take a quick glance at it: he’s staring straight at the lens, his expression unfathomable, blue eyes intense, like sparkling icicles in that precious hour between dusk and true night; the treacherous beauty of winter’s chill and the promise of warm hearths and crackling fires in one.
Taking a deep breath I pocket my phone and sit up straight, trying to look anywhere but in his direction. I don’t succeed and I’m disappointed to see that he’s no longer there. Dammit. I’ve pissed him off I’m sure. I scan the room quickly and the gloom deepens when I can’t find him anywhere. Unable to bear this any longer, I quickly stand and turn to flee and I’m immediately sitting back down again, as I bump into someone taller and broader than me.
He sits down next to me, concern marring his lovely brow as he whispers, “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to startle you. I just wanted to see how the photo came out.”
My brain is frozen. I blink, trying to defog my scattered thoughts and calm the galloping hooves that have replaced my heartbeat. There is a delicious, yet slightly nauseating fluttering south of my navel. I once saw a nature programme about millions of Monarch butterflies migrating after their long period of inaction during the winter, and I’m convinced they’ve now chosen my tummy as a perfect take-off site. Is this really happening? I must look like such an idiot right now. He is the only reason I let Stacey talk me into coming here tonight. The reason I am here – and now he is here, talking to me! No, not just talking to me. He’s asking about the photo and I’m thinking about Monarch butterflies! Oh shit! Speak dammit!
Unsticking my tongue, which seems to have tied itself to the roof of my mouth, I glance up at him, mirroring his shy grin. “Um the photo is perfect, thank you, but I’m sorry – I shouldn’t have taken it without permission so I’ll delete it if you want me to. You are my favourite actor. I’ve seen all your work – well, not Hellraiser and Blood Creek because I don’t like scary movies but everything else and you’re great, especially The Tudors and Whatever Works and I’m really excited about Man of Steel and The Man From Uncle and I know that Monarch butterflies are the only insect that can fly all the way across the Atlantic and I’m rambling now, so I probably need to stop talking.”
My cheeks burn again and I silently rue the two glasses of champagne I drank earlier. I hate champagne anyway. Why, oh why did I just do that? He’s going to think I’m crazy – and not in a good way. I chance another glance at him, still in shock at his presence, and even more surprised that he hasn’t made a quick get-away after my inane speech. I may as well use this opportunity to observe him up close and personal – and boy is he up close – as all too soon this is going to end. Either I’m dreaming (although I don’t remember going to bed) or he will come to his senses and – ever the gentleman – politely leave. I gasp at yet another shock – he’s staring at me so intimately and rubbing his thumb along his lower lip in a speculative way that sends iceberg sized tremors through me.
“So, no scary films, you talk too fast and too much when you are nervous and you like to give out unsolicited intelligence about butterflies. Three things about you I didn’t know five minutes ago. Am I only getting the edited version of you, because I sincerely hope not? You obviously know lots about me, so it seems kind of unfair. Help me out a little and let me play catch up.”
He lingers on the word play for a moment and I’m distracted by his mouth. He has beautifully sculpted lips; the bottom one full but not too full – and almost dead centre is a freckle or beauty spot. This freckle is my absolute weakness where Henry is concerned. Yes, he is the whole package but it’s the freckle that I always look for when scanning new photos of him online and it’s this freckle that drives me wild with lust when I see it, and I’m seeing it – for real – now! I find myself gazing at his lower lip and that spot, wondering what it feels and tastes like and imagining biting down on it…
Henry is talking again, “maybe we should start at the beginning? Hi, I’m Henry, and you are?”
He holds out his hand, and tilts his head inquisitively at me. He looks at me intently, like it matters to him more than anything in the world and once again I’m lost. How am I supposed to converse with him coherently? ‘It’s Henry Cavill. Henry Cavill. Henry Cavill. Henry Cavill’ my mind thunders at me over and over again. The rhythm charging along like pistons and gears in my addled brain, railroading me like a runaway locomotive and I’m helpless. A true damsel in distress in this moment and his eyes are the bright lamplight of this train fixing me and pinning me down to the tracks. I know I am about to be run over by the reality that is Henry Cavill and I don’t want or need rescuing. He is sitting so close to me I can smell his spicy cologne and feel the very weight of him in the air around us. I even felt the cushion in the seat next to me move when he sat down. This must be real. With mind and heart hammering this relentless and almost hypnotic beat, I take his hand and shake it in mine. I’m trying to play it cool but jump visibly at the charge between us.
Wishing I could be as calm as he is but knowing I’m hopelessly losing this game, I speak again, “My name is Jeanna.” I smile, but see his eyes cloud over fractionally and once again, I’m gabbling away before censoring my words. “Yes my name is Jeanna. I spell it J E A N N A not G I N A. I have black hair, I’m five feet eight inches tall, my birthday is the same as hers – 16th April, but that’s where the similarities end. I’m thirty-six, so older than she is and older than you and I don’t like to play games.”
I don’t know why but the look on his face when I told him my name angered me and it looks as if my little rant has got his attention.
“You’re very honest”, he states simply. “You say that like it’s a bad thing. I’m sorry but you have a very expressive face. Obviously, that is why you are such a good actor but you looked worried or upset or something when I told you my name and I had to say what I felt. I’m not HER or anyone else. I am honest and I will always say what I feel, unless you ask me something I don’t want you to know. In that case I won’t answer you. I won’t lie.”
Why has this suddenly turned into confessional? Christ on a bike! I’m sitting with Henry Cavill and I’m calling him out for having previous girlfriends? Way to go about ruining the most amazing moment of your entire life. I realise I am holding my breath and let it out slowly. The anger at her goes with it and in its place the nerves crank up another notch to Defcon One.
“I like your honesty Jeanna with a J, and I like you. A lot.” He says quietly, smiling at me again but this time the shyness has gone and it’s been usurped by the Cavill Megawatt Hollywood Dazzler. The smile I have dreamed about countless times. It’s the kind of smile that could be responsible for melting the polar ice caps and is like the love of a thousand puppies all rolled into one. Those eyes wide, innocent, silently compelling and utterly hypnotic.
“Unfortunately I have to go – the premiere, you know? Please will you wait for me after? Wait here. I will find you. I hope you enjoy the film Jeanna with a J.”
And with that he is gone. Striding away from me with that long-legged grace of his, so that I can only marvel at his retreating back. The film! Man of Steel. It should be renamed Man who Steals because he has my heart, mind, body and soul now and if I’m honest, he always did. I jump up and realise I need to find Stacey. I’m not sure whether my legs will support me though, as I start to replay his words in my mind. Spotting my friend through the masses, I make my way over to her, pretty sure my flushed complexion will give me away.
Stacey Mills may look like a fragile and delicate flower but I know different. My best friend of over twenty years, she is five feet two inches of feisty girl-power with more sass than a gold hotpants clad Kylie Minogue at a Kylie lookalike convention. Through her company S & M Events, Stacey has arranged premieres for some of the world’s biggest movies and celebrity is her bread and butter. It’s thanks to her that I have the access all areas pass around my neck and that impending rendezvous with my dream man. She is super organised, wickedly charming and rabidly profane – an interesting juxtaposition to her pop princess looks.
We are seated two hours into the movie – a blur of red and blue (although everything looks rose-tinted to me) – when I feel, rather than see, her now familiar overture of bony elbow digging into my ribcage.
“He’s looking again.” She hisses “Shh. I’m trying to concentrate.”
Trying and failing I don’t add, as the only thing I can think about now is Henry and AFTER. AFTER is gnawing away at the inside of my stomach, just as I am doing to my now useless manicure. Stacey reaches over and tugs my finger from mouth again and gives me what I think is one her stern looks – it’s hard to tell in the darkness. I take my hand back and sit on it along with the other for fear of worrying my nails any further. AFTER is currently threatening to knock my heart out of my chest and a big part of me thinks AFTER may cause me to throw up at any second.
The movie juggernauts its way to a destructive yet heroic climax: Superman on-screen battling the authoritarian General Zod in thirty feet’s worth of glorious Technicolor and I marvel again that this man finds anything about me fascinating. I’m just an ordinary girl; tall, but not exceptionally so. I scrub up quite well and I have good skin and hair. My figure is best described as curvy, although I’ve been fighting the weight gain since I hit my thirties. I once won my hometown Rear of the Year competition, but nowadays my arse looks more like the rear of a bus. I have a small yet full mouth and wide rather than high slanting cheekbones, which make me wonder if I have a long-lost Russian Princess hiding in my ancestry. My best features are probably my eyes; a kind of blue-grey and very expressive, the right one sharing something in common with Henry’s left: a partial heterochromia.
The credits roll and enthusiastic applause rises in waves to the rafters. There are whoops and cheers from the crowd and Henry stands proud and jubilant as he graciously accepts their plaudits. It appears that everyone wants to shake Superman’s hand and he has a smile and word of thanks for them all. The entourage closes in and I can no longer see him and for some reason this makes me worry and a little jealous. I shake my head and laugh at myself. If he is to be trusted then I should be preparing to meet with him again shortly and everything I know about him (which on a personal level is very little) tells me he is but what if he’s changed his mind? What if it’s all some big mistake or he just realises that it simply wouldn’t work? I’m not attempting to cast shadows on Henry’s integrity but things like this just don’t happen in real life. My natural inclination is to worry about things and this being the biggest single event to happen to me, short of my birth, is monumental and a major teenage emo laden angst-fest. I’m not naïve but I have loved before and I know how hard and fast I fall. Henry is pretty much my romantic equivalent of sky-diving.
Stacey says as she takes my hand again and pulls me up onto to my feet. I smile wanly and wonder if I packed my parachute, and more importantly, hope that it works.
I am back at the same table, this time waiting, wondering and silently praying. I have resisted the urge to keep checking my phone every minute; the photograph of him vivid, bright and perfect in my memory. I’m afraid if I look at it too often it will fade, like an old-fashioned negative. My hands shake around my glass; the tremors seemingly radiating from my very core. The chatter around me is an adrenalin and booze injected cacophony, punctuated with many “Darlings” and “Sweeties” and much air kissing. I have destroyed three tissues since Stacey deserted me ten minutes earlier to deal with an “urgent” matter regarding the late arrival of a minor star’s car and a subsequent drunken tirade, her mantra echoing in some shadowy recess of my mind:
“Remember the three Ps,” which according to her are “absofuckinglutely necessary” for success in any situation. “One: Personality: be yourself no matter what and don’t be afraid of who you are. Two: Pee: always, but always make a toilet stop first and Three: Perfume: If you smell fucking fabulous you will be fucking fabulous – thus leading to fabulous fucking! Personally I would add Puke, Perspire and Pass Out to the list but I don’t think Stacey would approve. Another five minutes kicks by and I am suddenly aware that most of the crowd have left. He’s not coming, my sensible side whispers, as I dash away unwanted and useless tears with the back of my hand.
My heart and stomach swap places with a hope that betrays my sensibilities as I hear my name, and even though I know it’s not his voice, I can’t help the crashing wave of disappointment that consumes me completely, as I look up at the familiar face of Craig, Stacey’s P.A. and my other close friend.
“Henry Cavill just gave me this to give to you! Is there something you need to be telling me?”
He gives me a piece of paper and a look so comical I burst out laughing. In my over-excited-too-much-champagne-giddy-with-delight-turned-to-despair state of mind this comes out as half a sob, half a giggle. He looks at me again, this time crossing his arms and tapping his foot impatiently.
“What’s going on? He asked me if I knew you and said that it was important that you got it immediately. Then his agent whisked him away before I could say anything else. You’re right by the way – he is the sexiest man alive.”
I’m only half listening to my friend as he starts listing Henry’s “delicious” qualities, and with fingers that don’t seem able to function correctly, I open the note.
Jeanna with a J, Forgive me, but I have to leave. It would give me great pleasure to see you again at the party. Please come. I will be on the mezzanine at midnight, waiting.
I stare at the missive. Hand trembling so bad I can hardly make sense of the words. I read it again and again trying to assimilate the meaning. Party? What party?
The music steadily thumps a techno-lite version of a recent chart topper. The DJ waves his arms about in staccato time to the rhythm. The crowd follow him enthusiastically, a sea of arms raised to the vaulted ceiling; fists pumping along with the throb of a bassline that is felt through the feet before assaulting the ears. Lights in a myriad of colour swoop over the throng and cast elongated shadows over the anonymous faces, walls and floor. The After Party is living up to its billing and the assembled VIP movie watchers are now letting loose. I have spied gossip column regulars, sports stars and TV favourites since I arrived, but no sign of Henry. The party is being held in club fittingly called Metropolis (although I have to wonder if the name was added specifically for tonight’s event) on the 38th floor of one of London’s tallest skyscrapers, right in the heart of the city. I amble over to the floor to ceiling windows and take in the vista. The venue is heart stopping in its simplicity and the view over London striking.
As midnight draws near I find Stacey and Craig. I am nervous all over again and desperately need some encouragement. Feeling absurdly like Cinderella, I wonder if I’m about to turn into a pumpkin and cast my eyes about wildly for a Fairy Godmother. Craig wordlessly hands me a drink which I eye suspiciously.
“It’s only water.” He shouts over the music with a shake of his head.
I thank him with a faint smile and take the glass. I am grateful for this tiny act of kindness from my friend who knows me well. I need to keep a clear head now. Stacey gives me a warm hug and marches me toward the stairs.
“Good luck hon.” She nods to the security guys, who magically stand aside to let me pass. “I’m right down here if you need me, Jea.”
Stairs. I silently rebuke Mr Cavill for his choice of meeting place, as I realise my legs and five-inch heels aren’t cut out for climbing shiny glass and chrome steps, whilst my brain and heart restart the whole runaway train thing: Henry Cavill. Henry Cavill. Henry Cavill. Henry Cavill….
I reach the top, holding my breath and the stair-rail both, afraid to let go and fall. It is brighter here than I could tell from downstairs, a soft glow radiating gently from the walls. There is a sense of homeliness, like putting on a pair of comfy socks after a cold and long day, which seems oddly detached from the dance-floor below. Two extremely comfy looking sofas and a solitary table are the only furniture and a single seat is occupied. I force myself to look straight ahead and find the deep blue sea of those eyes again, as he’s here, waiting for me, just like his note said. He stands. For what seems like forever he stands there looking at me, until I start to feel even more self-conscious and a little bit like a museum exhibit. I’ve been holding my breath so long now that I may have forgotten how the process works. My hand is started to ache from gripping the bannister so tight but I don’t want to let go just yet, he may be Superman on celluloid but I’m also certain that any resulting fall will be cause and effect of just being near him. Straightening my shoulders and mentally girding my heart, I start to speak just as he does.
“Hi. Tha –
We both laugh and try again.
“You go –
“Sorry, you fir –
Smiling broadly he makes a grand sweeping gesture with his hand and inclines his head, waiting for me to speak.
“I was just going to say hello.” I whisper.
“Me too. I also wanted to thank you for coming.”
He smiles a shy, boyish smile and I’m struck at the guilelessness in his words. Did he really have doubts about my attendance? I try for a natural smile to hide any shock I am feeling. He moves suddenly, closing the distance between us in a second and too stunned to do anything to but stare, I don’t protest as he takes my wrist from the railing and pulls me along in his wake. He turns and swiftly makes for a door I hadn’t noticed before. Somewhere in a shadowy room of my mind, I register the fire exit sign above the door, the faintly green glow kicking my survival instinct in the shins and waking me up. He may be Mr-Sex-On-Legs-Cavill but I know nothing about him and he could be dangerous. My heart screams n denial at the thought that he could be anything less than perfect and my libido laughs rebelliously.
“What the hell are you doing?”
I am determined to keep any fear out of my speech and try and fail to break free of his strong contact on my wrist. He makes no attempt to respond and I see that we are headed for yet more stairs. I am tripping along in his wake, valiantly trying to keep up with him. I’m going to break an ankle at this rate.
“If it is your intention that we head up these stairs, at least let me take off my shoes.” I snap at him, thinking this meeting isn’t going the way I’d planned it in my dreams.
He stops briefly, arches his right eyebrow and swoops me up, shoes and all, so that I am in his arms and being carried up the offending stairs before I can object.
“Put me down! I’ll scream.” I say it bluntly, but it sounds hollow and even I don’t believe myself.
His proximity is like a strangle hold on my sense of indignation, gripping me with a yearning I have never known. His cologne is a heady and spicy musk in my face, enticing me like vapours from a witch’s brew. I don’t know what to do with my hands, even though I long to stroke the soft curls around his ears that are now tantalizingly close. We reach the top of the short narrow staircase and Henry opens yet another door, this time onto cooler air and a roof terrace quiet, and still in the moonlight. A soft breeze ripples past and I shiver, although I don’t feel particularly cold. Henry stops and finally sets me down on my feet, sliding me down his hard body with an aching slowness that leaves me reeling. He doesn’t let me go and in this moment, I am glad, as I don’t think I can stand of my own accord.
“Sorry,” he says simply.
Sorry. He’s sorry. What on earth? I don’t understand this man one bit.
“I wanted to ask you something but I want it to be private. I never know who is looking or who has a camera these days.”
He drags both hands through his hair, momentarily relinquishing me and I know I should be pleased but I’m not and I feel bereft.
Could I…kiss you?” His voice is quiet but his eyes burn, wondrously lambent and hopeful.
Kiss me? Yes, yes a thousand time yes! My mind is tripping, dipping and swirling like a rollercoaster running dangerously close to the rails. He’s asking for permission? This is crazy. I feel like I am on the Big Wheel swaying in my little gondola at the very top of the world, the view over everything breath-taking and daunting all at once. The whizz and whoosh of the whole carnival surrounds me, sweeping crescendos of blinding, bursting light and sound, explode like popping balloons full of rainbows, and inside I am laughing and screaming, and I really am falling into time and space and ecstatic oblivion.
“You just manhandled me up some stairs and now you are asking my permission?” My voice is too high and my eyes are too wide.
“Sorry,” he says again, “that wasn’t very well thought out was it? Is that a no, then?”
This is it. The moment I have dreamed of my whole life.
“No. It’s not a ‘No’.”
He smiles that smile again; the Henry Cavill Weapon of Mass Seduction. It leaves me breathless; isolated on a barren speck of the world, like the lone survivor of a devastating, yet beautiful and all-ravaging apocalypse. He cups my face in his hands as synapses explode with delicious fission all over my body and leans toward me. The intensity of his gaze melts any vague notion of resistance I may have had. He kisses me and the world ends and starts again, as I find my own Utopia in the soft, sweet sanctuary of his lips.
For a few precious and stolen moments (or it may have been several star-struck hours, or even a handful of sun-kissed lazy days) I am the girl kissing Henry Cavill on a skyscraper rooftop in London, although it feels like I am at the very top of the universe, looking down through the stratosphere on an especially starry night. He tastes like heaven; my own personal ambrosia cushioned by the warm, soft and delicious plumpness of his mouth. His hands, gentle, hold my cheeks and imprison me in an unyielding frame. A soft, guttural exclamation escaping from him as our lips close and open and meet again, turning and twisting with the other’s in a dance as old and erotic as life itself. One of his hands shifts from my face and grasps my hair at the nape, pulling me closer still, and I gasp as his teeth graze my lower lip. His kiss deepens into something urgent and primeval, and I feel my most sensitized zones stand to attention, as my body responds involuntarily, my own hands now fisting in his gloriously soft curls. He pushes me back to the door almost violently and I’m pinioned by his hips, his groin grinding hard and growing against mine, and I feel omniscient and a little delirious with the knowledge. I know I could quite easily end up having fantastic bang-bang sex with Henry Cavill right here, right now, and a wanton, needy part of me doesn’t care. She is already ripping a foil condom packet with her teeth, like a hungry lioness tearing into the flesh of its prey. This kiss. I never want it to end.
A dull vibration against my thigh interrupts the fantasy, like a nuisance fly around the kill my lioness can’t shake off. Henry pulls back hesitantly, then resumes kissing me but the pest won’t be silenced and he stills. Without breaking eye contact he fishes in his pocket for the offending phone and presses a button, effectively killing its incessant buzz. He smiles a lop-sided apologetic grin and swoops down to kiss me once more. Things are just getting interesting again when a melodic but unfamiliar tune rings out from the transgressive mobile.
“You should answer it.” I say it without believing it myself.
“I don’t want to.”
“Well that makes two of us but it might be important.” He looks questioningly at me for a second before deciding to take my advice and he answers the call.
As jubilant as I am at his reluctance, a small part of me would have preferred it if he had thrown the damn thing away. I step aside to give him some privacy but also to give myself time to reflect on the last and best five minutes of my life. I have kissed Henry Cavill! I want to run to the edge of the roof garden and scream it into the oblivious London night sky. I bring tentative fingers to my lips that are still swollen and tingling, evidence of his mouth that was tracing mine. I looked straight into those incomparable blue eyes and saw the desire in them, like twin pools of burning ice. I had my hands on that unbelievably sexy curly mop of hair and I felt his erection pushing into me. Henry Cavill kissed me and he wanted me! Maybe I will wake up in a minute and it will all have been a dream – but what a dream?
“What?… Who?… Uh huh… Yeah, but it was years ago, I don’t know. Shit! No. Ok, yeah I’m coming now. Can you get Steve to meet me around the back please? Thanks. Yeah, I will.”
Henry ends the call and he looks angry. It’s not his usual composed demeanour.
“I’m sorry. I have to go. This isn’t how I planned things progressing in my head but I don’t want you falling in those heels, so I’m afraid I’m going to have to do this again.”
Once more I am in Henry’s capable arms, as he scoops me up again (I am starting to feel like a fireman’s dummy), tugs open the door and sprints down the stairs in double-quick time. The music from downstairs that was mercifully silent on the roof garden now invades my brain, the assault on my eardrums a testament to the fact that our moment is over and my libido evaporates with each thump of the beat. He deposits me underneath the green light inside the mezzanine room. He looks suddenly unsure and, again, this seems to be at odds with his normal self-possession.
“Do you um, want to give me your number?”
His eyes shine with honesty and his beguiling smile is like an arrow aimed straight at my heart. My number? Target acquired and locked Mr Cavill. Spirit soaring at the thought of any kind of shared future, I answer with a goofy grin and fumble in my bag for a pen I know I don’t have. Victorious, I produce my lipstick – a hot pink matt that I’m shocked to see he isn’t also sporting after our luscious lip mambo.
It seems it’s my turn to be shy and I hold up the lippy, “I, err, don’t have a um pen. Is this ok?”
He nods and swiftly unbuttons his shirt from the collar down to his chest. I gasp and just when I don’t think this night can become any more surreal (or amazing) he takes my trembling hand in his and places it on the downy, soft curls above his heart. “Just here.” The lambency in his eyes threatens to overwhelm me and it’s all I can do to keep my hand steady as I scribble out my number above his hard, perfect pecs. I’m done too soon and he takes my hand again and brings it to his lips for a swift, chaste kiss.
“Thank you. I am sorry. I hope to see you soon Jeanna with a J,” and he disappears down yet another staircase.
I stand there for a few moments, allowing the intelligent side of my brain time to play tag with everything else. The kiss, his words, my number, his chest! I am beyond ecstatic right now. I am Julie Andrews singing and twirling like a crazy lady on a mountain top. A Disney princess who finally found her prince. An adrenalin-pumped and exhilarated rookie who just completed her first “jump” from thirty thousand feet. Yes, the landing may have been a little abrupt, but I’m on solid – if slightly shaky – ground, my parachute billowing behind me like a beautiful, bright nimbus and I can’t help my smile as wide as the whole sky, as I go in search of my friends.
I love to write and I write with love. I am a happily married mum of two brilliant little boys. Henry Cavill is my book boyfriend inspiration. Please feel free to leave feedback and comments and to share with your friends. I hope you enjoy my stories.