Nan gets her grandson Cliff's 'hanger'
A look of defeat and exhaustion swept across Pam's face, and Kyle regretted saying what he did. His sister had never been one to play the girly-girl with him, always acting more of the adventurous tomboy. But in that moment, Kyle realised just how badly she was hurting.
"Ah, Pam, I'm sorry," he said as he placed his hands on her upper arms. She'd always been athletic, but she seemed so frail and brittle in his arms. "I didn't mean to sound harsh. Yeah, it's hot but there's nowhere I'd rather be than here helping you."
Pam could feel the well of emotion begin boiling over with her brothers words. All the anger and disappointment she'd been holding in after her marriage had ended came racing back to the surface. Combined with the embarrassment of getting help from her dear brother, to the scare of the elevator drop and the heat, it all combined in that moment to finally break her resolve. She shut her eyes tightly as tears began streaming down her cheeks, soft sobs bursting from her throat. She knew it was silly but the intensity of the storm she'd had to weather these last few weeks came crashing down on her and she wept openly.
Kyle's heart ached when he saw Pam's tears, and he stepped to her and swept her into a hug and held her as she cried. Pam slipped her arms under his and held tight to her brother and she buried her face into his shoulder. Her whole body shook and she let out all her grief and fear and pain.
After a couple of minutes Pam's sobs slowed and eventually stopped. Still holding each other, Kyle said, "Are you OK?"
She didn't say anything, only nodding and sniffing. She withdrew her arms, and Kyle let her go thinking she was ok. But she only brought her arms up and looped them around his neck and stepped into his arms again.
Kyle was taken by surprise and for a moment stood frozen. He'd never really been the type to hug - no one in their family was like that. And so the sudden closeness to his sister was strange. But he knew that there was nothing unusual about it, and given her situation, completely understandable. He wrapped one hand around her back and stroked her hair with the other.
Pam was in that quiet place in her mind; emotional exhaustion had left her running on autopilot. Nothing else intruded on her thoughts, and for the first time in weeks she felt the bliss of being free of her worries and her pain, even for just a few moments. And so she quietly revelled in that place, safe in her brother's arms.
While Kyle's heart and mind knew what was going on, his body reminded him that the last time he'd been this close to a woman was a very long ago indeed. The thought of his ex-girlfriend came suddenly in his mind, naked and fresh from the shower. She'd been called away, back home overseas to attend some urgent family matters. Her flight had been booked for the afternoon six weeks ago, and on that last day together she wanted to leave on a high note, and had come to him after her morning shower. Unfortunately the sudden change in gear in Kyle's mind from emotional support to sexual frenzy had him keyed up in an instant. He could smell the sweat and sweet fragrance of his sister's skin. Her hair felt smooth and delicate in his fingers. The warmth from her body seemed to soak right through him, like he could feel her radiating into his bones. The soft curves of her back and her waist felt totally feminine, and her breasts were wonderful pillows of flesh pressed against him.
He knew it wasn't right, but he couldn't help himself. It wasn't as though he was doing anything to her really, he rationalised. He was just hugging her, he told himself as he squeezed her tighter. It took all his willpower not to dip his head down and bury his face in her neck. And while his body might betray him, he still had enough self control to keep his eyes fixed straight ahead.
Pam had never really ever wanted to get close to her brother.