No matter how many years have since gone by, I’ll always cherish what Theresa and I shared on a summer night in 1955. I was 13 that year- a tall and gangly boy who probably looked older to Theresa when she met me.
Atlantic City has always had a quicksilver quality; a beguiling and confusing impermanence that somehow also rubs off on some people who either visit or live there as well. During the 1940’s and 1950’s, the town was like a second home to me; I had aunts and uncles who owned, respectively, a small rooming house on Ocean Avenue and a larger woo-frame hotel around the corner on Tennessee Avenue.
In those more innocent times, kids could be entrusted with some cash to explore the delights of the Boardwalk on their own if they were past 11 or 12. So it was that, instead of going to my usual haunt, the amusement arcade on Central Pier, I headed south, to Million Dollar Pier.
Actually, I was also secretly hoping over the past month of July, in my heart of hearts, that I’d somehow meet a girl beyond the constraints and vigilance of my parents and relatives. Now, on this particular sultry night in early August, I got my wish.
While trying my luck at Skee-ball, I gradually became aware of an older dark-haired girl playing the machine next to mine. Like me, she was deeply tanned from day after day spent on the beach. She had long, muscular but shapely legs, and the humidity of the evening combined with the glare of the bare light bulbs in the amusement arcade and midway attractions out on the pier had made her skin glisten with a sheen of pungent sweat that gradually began to intoxicate me.
My mind no longer concentrated on Skee-ball, I dropped a ball with bounced once, then rolled over to her adjacent machine, landing squarely on her foot. I apologized, but she was forgivingly unfazed and we started talking as we continued playing. She was older than me- 15- but, since I was tall, as she was, she told me she was strongly attracted to me. Her shoulder-length black hair framed a thin face whose chief feature was a pair of deep set flashing brown eyes. She wore a thin cotton dress beneath which I could see the small twin mounds of her budding breasts.
We eventually introduced ourselves, and by eleven or so, we left Million Dollar Pier for the still crowded Boardwalk where I bought soft drinks. She suggested we go a little further south to Convention Hall. Curving in front was the limestone columned Esplanade of the States. Here, just in front of the Boardwalk and partially secluded, we found a quiet spot to talk.
The wind off the ocean chilled us after the hothouse heat of the arcade, and Theresa folded her arms and moved against me to keep warm. I put my arm around her and drew her closer to me. She told me that she’d been attracted to me as soon as I’d started playing Skee-ball next to her. I was tall for my age, and was just about the same height as hers. She was 15, but wasn’t at all put off by the fact that I was two years younger. Far from it. She took my left hand, opened it, and traced around my palm with her fingernail. The effect on me was like a jolt of electricity: I felt my penis begin to stir, embarrassingly unbidden. I don’t know whether she noticed, and after she reached up and drew my head down to hers to kiss me, I could have cared less. Her lips felt like a cool fire, an impossible but compelling combination; I’d kissed two other girls before, but never had anyone like Terry ever kissed me this way. Her tongue crept in between my lips, and I responded. I have no idea how long we stood there kissing like that, barely screened by the columns from the crowds still jamming the Boardwalk as midnight grew closer.
“Excuse me,” murmured Terry. “I have to go to the ladies’ room. I’ll be right back.” She grinned widely. “Don’t go ‘way!” I didn’t; I was rooted to he spot, motionless, until she returned a few minutes later. I became aware of the throngs of late night strollers on the Boardwalk. Almost as if we’d had the same thought, we twined our fingers and slowly moved to the end of the Esplanade, then down stone steps, black and masked from the bright lights of the Boardwalk outside Convention Hall. We went to the beach below, now completely out of sight from anyone else. Another long kiss and she pressed herself up against me. I now had an insistent erection, and Terry knew it. Far from being shocked or surprised, she pressed against me ever harder to feel my swollen penis bulging the front of my pants.
Now she had something in return to offer me; as she pressed herself against me, I felt wetness soak through her skirt. Terry took my hand and guided it between her legs. Now I discovered why she’d made that trip to the bathroom. My fingers met a dense forest of pubic hair, which aroused me yet again; mingling with the salt air from the nearby ocean came the rich, thick scent of her soaked vagina. That’s why she’d gone to the ladies room.
“Use your fingers!” she gasped as she spread her legs farther apart. I first cupped her thick mound, then opened her dripping labia and stroked her gently, up and down. Her clitoris was large, although I didn’t know what it was at the time. It swelled up as her breathing grew shorter.
“Harder! God, harder!” she cried out, and I thumped and drummed with three fingers over her protruding clit and into her sopping pussy. Time seemed to stop; there was only her breathing and gasping, until, with a convulsive shiver, her labia puffed out around my fingers. I lost my grip on her clitoris, and she moaned and moaned. I thought I’d hurt her, and apologized, but Terry told me she felt wonderful. I’d inadvertently masturbated her to orgasm.
Still with her back to me, she took two of my fingers and put them back in her creamy vagina. My erection was a thing of the past, even when she unzipped my pants and reached inside for my now shriveled organ. We kissed some more, but gently now, with less urgency. She cupped my hand over one of her small breasts. Her nipple felt as hard as her clit.
Sometime near one in the morning, we separated. She was staying with relatives who lived further south of Convention Hall. I asked her if I could walk her home, but she said her family would probably ask a lot of questions about a strange boy they didn’t know escorting her home that late at night.
We agreed to meet the next night… at the Esplanade at eleven o’clock. I showed up, but Terry didn’t, and I never saw her again. I came back the next two nights in a row, but again, she wasn’t there to meet me.
As bitterly disappointed as I was at the time, it occurred to me years later that I had learned something far more important about myself that hot night in August on the beach: that my real pleasure came from helping a woman attain orgasmic release through masturbation. Don’t get me wrong. I love intercourse also, but there’s something so indescribably wonderful about the touch, taste and smell of masturbating a woman. Wherever Terry is today, I can only remember her with gratitude for showing me the way.