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While his body writhed with desire, he sought the magic catalyst to melt this unbelievable perfection of feminine beauty.


by Martin Courtney



Vol. 2, No. 5, 1958

     THE GIRL WAS unbelievably beautiful. She was also unbelievably cold. Even posed as she was on the model stand, nude save for a wisp or two of the filmiest drapery, she seemed surrounded by an almost tangible aura of untouchability. Here, thought Nick Thompson, as he peered at her through the viewing lens of his camera, was the embodiment of la belle dame sans merci, the siren, the lorelei, all the women of legend who had lured men irresistibly, only to dash them to the rocks of emotional destruction through lack of response.
     This was the first time Hilda had posed for Nick, though he had been hearing of the incredibly beautiful Wisconsin Swede for months from other fashion photographers around the city. He peered at her perfection again through the lens, to convince himself, reluctantly, that none of the rumors did justice to her.
     She was tall-perhaps five feet six--but not as tall as the statuesque beauty her perfect proportions and perfect posture suggested. Her hair was a heavy honey blonde that fell naturally to her milk-white shoulders in a lazy wave no beautician could hope to duplicate. Her forehead was broad and low and delightfully broken by a sharp widow's peak, her eyebrows were twin arches of gold, her eyes, slightly tilted by the fine broad cheekbones that made her face a fascinating pattern of plane and shadow, were aquamarine blue beneath long, curling eyelash screens. Her nose was slightly tilted, her mouth broad and full, a sensualist's dream.
     The body that flowed gracefully from her smooth, swanlike neck and throat was a unique, arresting blend of the high-fashion model's skin and bones and the provocative fullnesses of the pinup girl. She was firm, smooth and unblemished of flesh, long of limb, a radiant jewel of young womanhood yet she seemed to radiate dry-ice.
     Nick had heard the stories--oh, so many of them during recent months!--stories that ranged from top-money top-sophisticates to lusty beefcake lover-boys on from the West Coast. Every man who saw her wanted her desperately, every man who wanted her paid her court, wined her, dined her, took her out on the town. Yet every story Nick had heard about Hilda Rosenquist had the same frustrated ending.
"The hell of it was," it ran, "when it came to the point, I simply couldn't make a pitch. I froze, I choked up, I couldn't crack through that wall of ice."
     To his surprise, after hearing so much about Hilda's innate frigidity, Nick discovered the girl to be pleasant, friendly and beautifully cooperative. She had greeted him with a handshake and said, "I've seen so much of your work, and I like it very much. What do you want me to do?"
     Looking at her, in all that blazing loveliness, sheathed by a smart, simple, subtly revealing  blue-green silk dress, Nick had almost blurted, "I want to go to bed with you." But her very forthrightness had held him back, checking him with invisible reins.
     Now, regarding her uncovered perfection, he understood the others, the expert womanizers who had tried for this woman and had not even been able to step into the batter's box, much less get out of it. Thoroughly case-hardened where beautiful women were concerned, accustomed to accepting beauty as merely a professional asset in women who posed for him, Nick found himself almost in a state of battle fatigue.
     This was not merely a woman he had in his viewing lens--this was a goddess.
And no man makes love to a goddess save at peril of his life and everlasting soul. Realizing that he was trapped, between the enchantment of her beauty and the paralyzing effect of her perfection, he tightened his lips and set about getting to work. Lorelei or not, a shrewd agent was charging him $50 an hour for her services, and more than half an hour had already passed since Hilda had entered his smart, well equipped studio.
     He said, "Hilda, relax just a little more...to the left. Bring the curve of your left hip forward about two inches. That's it."
     The intuitive quickness of her response made him realize that here was not only the most beautiful woman in the world, but one of its finest professional models. He added a grudging respect to his already overrich feelings of frustration, admiration and desire.
     "Try not to look so strained," he told her. Dutifully, Hilda's face relaxed into a soft somberness that seemed luminous with some inner glow. He made the shot, took another for insurance, then emerged from behind the camera.
     "Hilda!" he exclaimed, approaching her. "Hilda, you're crying! Have I done something to hurt your feelings?"
     She shook her head, causing the honey-gold tresses to fan out enchantingly before settling back into their regular perfection. Then, through clenched white teeth, she murmured tensely, "It's August fifteenth." Then she sneezed and sneezed again, and tears ran down her exotically made cheeks.
     "Hay fever time!" she gasped, and was suddenly clinging to him for dear life as convulsion after convulsion racked her perfect body. Nick held her close and pulled out his handkerchief and mopped up, and then heard his voice saying, "Darling, you're beautiful. I want you to love me."
     "Beautiful...like this?" she gasped, her eyes still watering.
     "Beautiful...like anything," he assured her. He lifted her moist lips to his and kissed her lingeringly. Her response was volcanic.
     "Darling!" she said. "I was beginning to think there was something wrong with me. Kiss me again!"
     The iceberg was melted by a sneeze, the goddess was human after all!

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