A Safe Room

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All sexually active characters in this work of fiction are aged 18 years or older. This story includes brother/sister incest.


I couldn’t wait for Brian to get home. Of course it wasn’t really his home any more, since he got his own place after he graduated. At first it was a sublet, then after working for six months he showed some major adulting and got a mortgage. Then came furniture, cookware, all of the other things that reinforce your independence. Fortunately he still spent the occasional weekend with Mom and me since he was just 20 minutes away. Dad had passed away suddenly four years ago.

Finally Brian’s Toyota pulled into the driveway. He hauled out his bag and gave Mom a hug. Then he turned to me with his crooked smile. “Hey, Squirt.” I nearly knocked the breath out of him with a bear hug. “I thought I told you not to call me that anymore.”

Brian and I finally let go. He grinned at me. “You tell me that every time, but nevertheless, here we are.”

We went into the house, Brian and Mom chatting about his job. I caught enough to know that he was doing well and had received a nice raise. He glanced over at me. I moved my hand slightly at my side, index and pinky fingers extended. Brian nodded. It was our signal that we used when either of us wanted to talk privately, with certain rules applied.


Brian was 23, a few months shy of four years older than me. We were typical sibs growing up, the protective older brother and slightly bratty kid sister. OK, maybe I was more than slightly bratty.

Our relationship evolved in a rather dramatic fashion a few years ago when he was 20. He was home from college for the summer, noticeably taller, cooler, and cockier than before, and I was a mess of seething teenage hormones trying to cope with my not-quite-adult self. We spent the first few days alternately screaming at each other or sulking in our rooms. Finally Mom hit the wall and threw us both out of the house mid-argument. I don’t even remember what the stupid issue was, but I’m pretty certain it was stupid. I went to the porch swing to have a good cry. Brian disappeared out back.

Fifteen minutes later I thought to myself how fucked up this all was. I hadn’t seen my brother since spring break and now we couldn’t even have a decent conversation, much less flop on the couch together and watch a movie. I took a couple of deep breaths and headed for the back yard.

I already knew where he was. I picked my way down the narrow path to the creek and saw him leaning against the big rock. “It’s a glacial erratic, Lil,” he had told me once. “Probably got dropped here over 10,000 years ago. It’s truly kind of awesome when you think about it.” It had in fact become his favorite thinking spot.

Brian heard, or sensed, my approach. I braced myself. His eyes remained closed, he seemed to be doing deep breathing, and his face looked very much calmer. “Hey, Lil.”

“Hey yourself.” I tried to match both his calm tone and his breathing rhythm, which actually seemed to help. I plunged in. “Brian, we need to fix it. Mom has no clue what to do with us.”

He nodded. “I’m working on an idea.”

“Can you tell me?” I tried to keep my voice neutral. “No judgement, OK?

Brian opened his eyes and looked at me wide-eyed. “That’s actually a big part of it.”

For the first time all week I felt hopeful. “Maybe some interaction ground rules?”

He smiled broadly. I felt so good around my brother when he smiled.

“I swear sometimes you think like you’re my twin. OK, Lilly. Here’s what I’ve got so far. I want to hear your input.” He put his arms around his knees and took a deep breath. “What if we make a signal when we need rules, and we go off together and just talk through whatever the issue is. I think maybe we only need two rules. The first rule is absolutely no judgement, like you said. The other one is that whatever is said there stays there. It stays strictly between us.”

“I get it. Like an emotional safe room.”

“Exactly! But we need a signal, we can’t just scream ‘safe room’ at each other in the heat of battle.”

I laughed. “No, Mom would just throw us out again. Heyyy.” I had a flash.

Brian looked at me again. “You got something?”

I put my hand in a fist, then pointed my index finger and pinky at him.

“Wow,” he said. That’s kind of like a visual flag of truce.”

“You’re pretty smart, for being such a fucking smartass,” I snapped. But we were both grinning now. Seconds later we were hugging and all of the nasty emotions just drained away. Brian rested his chin on my head and said, “Let’s go get ice cream. I’ll drive.”

The two-rule safe room — we shortened it to TRS — was a godsend. Not only could we resolve petty disputes like reasonable people, but we could bring each other our most personal problems in absolute safety. I think we both developed some amazing empathy that summer. Once we were in the TRS — it happened to be at Starbucks that time — and I said, “I wish my Girne Escort periods weren’t so bad. It makes me such a total fucking bitch.”

Brian’s voice was gentle, his gaze sympathetic. “I wonder if you should talk to Mom about seeing her gynie and going on the pill. My ex said that really helped her. There’s some research on it.”

I had my iPad with me and browsed a couple of women’s health sites. I looked up. “That looks promising, my awesome big brother. I’ll let you know how it works out.” It did work out, and I had one more in a long string of reasons to feel close to Brian.


Brian and I were doing the dishes after dinner. He asked, “Where do you want to meet?”

“Living room. Mom will be in bed by 10.” He nodded.

We were slouched on the sofa, with neither of us really watching the dumb show on the TV. Brian flicked the set off with the remote, then held up his hand with two fingers pointed at me. “Your nickel,” he said.

I sighed heavily. “I got dumped last week.” Brian put his arm around my shoulder. “Fuck. I’m so sorry, Squirt. You didn’t say anything.” It was a fact, not a judgement. “Let it all out.”

I sighed again. I tried three times to continue and failed. I just looked at Brian in frustration. “No judgement,” he whispered.

I started again. “He said I was no good in bed.”

Brian’s astonishment was genuine. “You’re not kidding me, are you.” I shook my head. “Well. I… I can’t fucking believe it, Lil. You’ve got a bottomless well of empathy, you move through a room with such feline sensuality, and you are, quite frankly, very easy on the eyes.”

I stared at him with my mouth open. Brian had never said anything remotely like that to me before. Maybe he would say, “Cute outfit, Lil,” but rarely. That was about it. And here I was with puffy eyes, unbrushed hair, in a shapeless, stretched out old tee that I hadn’t bothered to change in two days. In the TRS I knew he was being completely honest, no risks or BS.

“Yeah, well, my assets weren’t much appreciated in this case.”

Brian was silent for a couple of minutes. He finally spoke. “Did you ever think the problem might be him?”

“Sure, that’s a natural reaction. But how do I know where the problem is, and if it’s really me, what do I do about it? How can I ever be with a guy again if this is hanging over me?” I looked at him with desperation.

“Those are excellent questions.” He rubbed his face. I knew he was probably tired from working all week. He looked at me again. “Can you give me a couple of days to come up with something? I need to do some reading and thinking.”

I sighed. I knew he needed the time, and I needed him. He had become a bit of a life coach for me. “When can we talk again?”

Brian pondered. “I can get off work early on Tuesday. Come over for dinner. Mom will let you have the car if you’re visiting me.”

I worried all week about what Brian could possibly come up with. The whole thing was tearing me up inside, but now I had an ally.

Brian texted on Monday. “OK, need major TRS time. Figure a way to tell Mom you’re staying over, this may take hours.”

I didn’t give a shit. I just wanted to know if I was a real woman or not, and if not, how to become one. I ran it by Mom, then texted back. “Told Mom I’m staying over, that we may go shopping on Wednesday. Hope you can get time off.”

“No prob for Wednesday. You are my priority this week.”

God, I loved my brother. I packed overnight stuff in my backpack and drove to his place on Tuesday.


I walked into Brian’s townhouse to meet his warm hug. Something smelled wonderful. “I made a meatloaf and mashed potatoes.” Only my absolutely fucking favorite comfort food.

Did I mention how much I loved my brother?

Dinner was awesome. We were both about done when Brian gave me the sign. He poured us both tall glasses of water, a sure indication that there could be a lot of talking coming up. We headed to the sofa. He looked a bit, well, off. Haggard, even.

“No judgement,” I reminded him, my two fingers touching his arm.

“Lilly, I’m a bit concerned about the steps I’ve worked out. I’m no sex therapist, no behavioral psychologist. I’m just me.”

“I know that, Brian. I trust you.” Brian was a biochemical engineer. I knew that he had done a deep dive into the issue. That was his way.

“OK. Here’s what we’re trying to accomplish. I want to explore the dynamics of your relationship with your ex. I’m going to ask some questions that may be, um, uncomfortable. If you are good with answering the questions, and I understand what happened between you and him, then we are going to look at your bigger issue. That is, are you capable of having satisfying sexual relationships. That will involve some physical touching exercises. After that, you should have some answers.”

I saw the concern on Brian’s face. We were in our safe place, but we might be venturing into uncharted territory. But I simply couldn’t Magosa Escort keep agonizing over whether I was a terrible sex partner. It was eating me up.

“Let’s try the questions.”

Brian looked me square in the eyes. “I’m going to start with something unrelated, but personal. This is just to get us rolling. Please be honest.”

I met his look and nodded. “It stays between us.”

He nodded, then took a breath. “Lilly, does it really bother you when I call you ‘Squirt?'”

I flinched. I was tempted to call foul, because that was certainly no softball question. But it was TRS. No judgement. I thought about it and answered him as honestly as I could. “I used to like it when we were younger, little sis and all. Now though, when you call me that, I sometimes wonder if you really see me as an adult.”

He nodded slowly. “I most certainly do, Lilly, but goddammit, I don’t want you to have those doubts hanging over you.” He took a sip of water. “I’ll stop it as of this moment.”

I almost teared up. He was such a sweet guy.

“Next question. This one could be a bit tougher. Did your ex-boyfriend ever give you oral sex?”

I tensed again. This clearly wasn’t going to be any emotional picnic. I knew Brian wanted a truthful answer, and I knew he had his reasons for everything he would ask.

“No, he didn’t. He…he said that was gross.”

Brian’s eyebrows went up. “Did he ever make you go down on him?”

I thought carefully about the way he had worded the question. “Yes, he would push my head down there when he wanted me to suck him off.”

Brian’s voice was much softer for his next question. “Had you ever done it before?”

“Not before him, no.”

Brian turned away. I could not miss him hissing under his breath, “Fucking asshole.” He composed himself and checked a paper on the table, covered with notes. “Next question: did he ever give you an orgasm?”

I stopped to think. “Twice, maybe. Once when I tried to get him to him to go down on me, he refused but said he’d finger me. I did kind of have to help him quite a bit to get me there, though. Another time I ground on his dick until I came. But never just from sex.”

Brian sighed deeply. Finally he spoke. “Lilly, what you’re telling me is that he didn’t ever really get you off. You got yourself off, and he just happened to be there like the tool that he was.”

I was shocked. I suddenly saw my brother was right. Deryk had never even bothered to give me an orgasm on his own initiative.

Brian frowned. “I was going to ask you a bunch of questions about foreplay, cuddling, stuff like that. But now I’m sensing that would just be a waste of time. Clearly this guy did little if anything to build real intimacy with you.” He breathed deeply. “Why don’t we move right into the physical exercises.”

“OK, Brian. What do you want me to do?”

“Please put on your sleepwear. We’re going to my room.” He pointed the two fingers at me.

I felt all warm inside. “I’ll change in the other room.”

I grabbed my backpack and headed to the spare bedroom. After I put on my usual sleep outfit, a long soft t-shirt over my panties, I walked to Brian’s room. He gave me a slightly strained smile, then he went to the bathroom to change. He came out in a t-shirt and pj bottoms.

Brian motioned for me to get on the bed, then he hesitated. “Lilly. I, uh, I’m proposing a supplemental rule for this session.” I knew this was serious. We had only done this like twice before, when one of us was dealing with some truly major shit.

“I propose that when either of us feels uncomfortable, such as due to, uh, physiological circumstances beyond our control, we…”

I interrupted. “You mean like getting an erection.”

Brian jolted up, then regained control. “Yes, that’s a good example. If either of us feels uncomfortable, we can call a timeout until we both feel comfortable again.”

I smiled. “I accept the supplemental rule.”

Brian seemed relieved. “OK, then I would like you to lie on your tummy please. First I am going to do some relaxing massage so that the touching exercises will be in a comfortable context.”

Well this is hard to refuse, I thought. After what I’d experienced in the past week I could definitely use some relaxation.

I wondered about all the research Brian had clearly done. I surmised that his cutting off the questions meant he had already accumulated all the information he wanted about my asswipe ex. He was now totally focused on evaluating me and my capability for physical response. I was much less worried about this step in the process than I might have been. I was in TRS, after all.

Brian lit a couple of tea lights and dimmed the overheard. He rubbed something from a small bottle on his hands. It smelled like some essential oils, maybe with lavender. I going to get the works. He began by rubbing my neck. “Is there anywhere in particular that you feel unusual tension, Lilly?”

“Just about fucking Kıbrıs Escort everywhere, since last week.”

His voice softened again. “How about we work on that.”

Brian dated Katrina, a masseuse, for over a year. She later moved to New York to further her career, but I knew she had taught him a bunch of stuff.

He found the knot in my neck almost immediately. I felt the strength in his thumbs and fingers as he worked the knot out. “How’s that feel?”

“Amazing.” My response was a bit muffled by the pillow. I wriggled out of my shirt while still prone so he could work directly on my back. He kept going, shoulders, spine, rib cage, arms, even my wrists. All of the accumulated tension was draining out of me, and I began to feel a bit sleepy.

“Now I’m going to do your legs.”

“K,” I mumbled.

Who knew you could hold such tension in your calf muscles? He then worked on my lower thighs. I sensed him pausing as he neared my panties.

“Do you want me to do your glutes, or do you want to take a break?”

“”Please keep going.” I knew he was thinking it might be supplemental rule time. Dammit, I wanted all of my muscles as loose and relaxed as what he had already worked. I felt his firm touch as he worked on my tight butt through the thin material. I felt all of the tightness going out of me. It was wonderful.

“Done.” He got off his knees and sat on the edge of the bed.

“No front massage?” I asked drowsily.

“Maybe, uh, later. Right now I, um, I need to invoke the supplement.” His voice trailed off. I knew he was hard without looking up.

“OK, Brian. I’ll be here.” He got up and went downstairs. I thought heard a door close. He must have gone to the downstairs bathroom. I rolled over on my back, realizing that I had a dampness issue down there myself.

In the moment, none of it seemed weird. It was Brian, my closest friend as well as my brother. I knew that he was evaluating, not judging me. The distinction was not trivial. I thought that maybe we should get back on an even keel before continuing though. When I heard him coming back up the stairs, I found my shirt and pulled it on again, trying to cover up the wet spot in my panties. I was relieved to see him looking calm as he walked in and sat on the bed.

“Sorry, Lil.”

“Don’t be. We knew going in this could be an extended process. I guess you took care of your discomfort?”

“Damn thing has a mind of its own,” he said softly.

“Personally, I feel flattered. And safe.”

I knew that Brian had a will of iron. He could focus on a task and mentally remove any and all distractions. However an hour of touching my body was simply too much for his hormones. I got that. But he had already accomplished relaxing me to a state I had seldom experienced.

I had a thought about my own issue. “Hey, would you mind if I extended the timeout, for like twenty minutes? I seem to be a little worked up myself. “

He looked at me with a soft smile. “No judgement, but that’s a useful data point. I’ll be downstairs.” He closed the door softly.

I pushed my panties down, kicked them off, and thought of his warm touch as I ran my fingertips up and down along my wetness. Waves of pleasure overcame me as I massaged my clit, visualizing Brian’s magic fingers probing me, then finding the spot where he could release my tension. I reached a gasping climax in less than ten minutes and lay back, letting my body’s hormonal bath wash over me.


I woke to Brian gently shaking my shoulder. “Lil? You fell asleep.”

“Oh shit! What time is it?”

“It’s after eleven.” I had snoozed for two solid hours. The only light in the room now was a single flickering candle, but I was aware that Brian could see my exposed lady parts.

He spoke softly. “Do you want to just call it a night and continue in the morning?”

I sat up. “Well, I’m awake and rested now. Why don’t we at least talk about the next phase?”

Brian hesitated. He kept his soft eyes trained on my face. Finally he spoke. “I’m not entirely certain the next phase is necessary. You seem to have responded quite well to just being massaged.”

I touched two fingers to his arm. “But I’m not going to be getting a full body massage from every partner. How can we be sure how I’ll respond when I just go to bed with someone?”

Brian sighed. “You’re right, of course.” He paused, then spoke again in his calm, even, iron-willed voice. “The next phase involves gentle touching of the parts of your body that should react normally to sexual stimulus. This is something like sensate focus therapy, except of course we are not partners. It will just be me touching you in order to gauge your response. Presuming you have all of the appropriate reactions, we’ll then have a good idea whether you are capable of having sexual relations that should satisfy both partners.”

I nodded. “Which would mean, I just need to get better at choosing said partner,” I said.

He nodded. “True, but that is a step beyond what we are doing here.”

“You’ve put hella thought into this haven’t you?” I already knew the answer before he nodded again. In that moment I felt a bit overwhelmed by my brother’s love, his capability to dive into and parse the most challenging personal problem I had ever brought to him.

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