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Cool Relief by Southernfrau

Sadly, Southernfrau is no longer with us. Her stories are archived here for her friends to remember her by. Enjoy her legacy to Lancer.

Word Count 840

Disclaimer:  I do not own Johnny Lancer…wet or dry…but I can dream.
Author’s note:  This was written several years ago for the Splish Splash challenge.  The heat, storms and rain we have had lately inspired me to dust it off and add a little to it.

The heavy mass of dark clouds shifted in the breezeless sky.  One huge ominous billow of black slowly churned until it separated into two separate vapor masses, giving the sunlight a chance to shine brightly from the opening. 

Shading his eyes as the sun once more peeked from behind one of the multitude of storm clouds, Johnny Lancer sighed. He was hot, tired and sweaty. //Nothing would feel better right now than the sky opening up and dumping buckets of rain water down on me.//

Johnny’s tanned hand pulled at the sweat soaked red shirt that was molded to his chest, highlighting the sculpted muscular torso.  Pulling at the front of the shirt only served to attach the wet garment to his back.  No amount of fanning the apparel brought any relief to his over-heated body.

“Come on Barranca, let’s head over to stone pond and get you something to drink. While we’re there I think I’ll take a dip and see if I can’t get cooled off some. I feel like I’m melting faster than a piece of ice in hell.”

Arriving at the edge of the pond, Johnny looped Barranca’s reins over a low limb hanging right at the edge of the shaded pond.  Barranca gratefully dipped his head in the water and took a soothing drink, and then began to nibble at the tender grass growing around the edge.

Johnny smiled as he watched the horse.  Soon his attention was drawn to the sound of the waterfall. //It’s not buckets of rain, but it’s just as good.//

Johnny hung his hat on the saddle horn, and then began peeling the damp and sticky clothes from his body. First the shirt came off revealing the broad shoulders and tight stomach. Pulling the garment over his head mussed his already disheveled hair, lifting the wet silky strands into spikes of shiny black. He toed off his boots, and then shimmied out of the form fitting leather pants.  Dropping down on the moist ground around the pond, he shucked off his socks. He laughed as his toes were freed of the body heat holding socks.  

Deciding on all or nothing he stood and pushed the cut-off long johns down. He laid his clothes on a bush; in the hopes some of the moisture would dry from them.  A light breeze stirred and wafted over his nude body, and he shivered in cool relief as it dried the perspiration off his skin.

Johnny grabbed his bar of soap from his saddlebag and then waded out into the pond.  Stopping briefly he dug his toes into the cold mud of the bottom, sighing in delight as his body heat lowered. He moaned with pleasure as the water cooled his skin.  The further out he trudged the cooler the water felt. Once he was out deep enough, he dunked his head under the water and swam towards the waterfall.

The water skimmed over his head, and stroked his skin like a hand in a velvet glove, as he pressed towards the waterfall. The caress of the water was calming and soothing as silk. He could feel the tensions of the day floating off of him and sinking to oblivion.  His body felt weightless and free.   

Johnny reached the ledge under the waterfall and with graceful agility used his muscular arms to lift himself up on the rock surface. He stood under the clear curtain of water, as it rained down on him, plastering his hair to his head and massaging his skin with a steady beat.  He raised his head, closed his eyes and let the shower of water dance across his face, tickling his sensitive lips until they parted and he drank in some of the clear nectar.

He took his soap and began rubbing it over his lithe body. He started with his left shoulder and arm, he watched as the white lather appeared on the various areas of his body.  He used smooth easy strokes, much like he would polish a piece of leather.  He observed as the friction of soap and water caused bubbles to form and slip and slide down his limbs, feeling like finger tips trailing down his body, then pooling at his feet to tickle his toes as the water finally washed them over the stone ridge into the pond. Johnny finished by soaping his hair and rinsing it.  He stayed under the cascade of water a few minutes more as the heat and tension leeched entirely from his body.  Feeling a contented lethargy over come him, he dropped off the flat expanse of rock and swam back to shore.

Johnny idly wondered what his family would think if he returned home astride Barranca without the benefit of clothes.  He hated to put the still damp apparel back on his refreshed body.  A loud clap of thunder and the hiss of cold raindrops impacting the heated earth convinced him it was time to stop day dreaming. Johnny reluctantly dressed and then mounted Barranca and headed for home.



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