In this sequel to the 2009 short story "SAVING THE POOL: CAN NATURIST FIND A PLACE TO SWIM, AND SAVE IT FROM CLOSING ?", Heather meets Cassandra and Susan at the mall, giving her some courage.
This first new story since 2019...
Letters : 33222 Words : 6166
I first met Faith at the Key west airport two years ago, in July. I had just installed a new network for the local branch of a national lawyer firm who exclusively trust me with their network. I still had 3 hours before my flight, so I was killing the time by updating my blog on my laptop. I normally don't arrive this early at the airport, but it was early in the morning, raining outside and the airport Internet hot spot was totally free.
I was checking my surroundings, trying to capture the mood of the waiting area for my online diary when I saw her walk across the room toward me. Five foot 10, late twenties, perfect figure and really nice three piece suit reminiscent of a customized Channel. It was clearly optimized to highlight her generous breasts, most likely C-cup.
I was sitting next to the main WIFI antennae, where computer geeks usually assemble in a choreographic pre-flight ballet of frenetic typing. Today I was alone, perhaps because I one of the rare geeks to actually wake up before the sun, at a time when my colleagues usually go to sleep.
As the faint smell of her flower perfume reached my nose, she sat down a few chairs on my right, installing an old IBM Thinkpad from her case. I studied her posture, reliving her walk in my direction. This woman had a perfect control of her movement and everything, down to the way she walked, indicated power and confidence.
I had met my share of saleswoman and had decided to blacklist all of them from my list of potential love interests. The power sellers, those at the top, were power hungry and stopped at nothing to get what they wanted. While sexy in itself, many would sacrifice their love life without a second thought if they could get a big sale. As for the very beautiful, well, anxiety often got to them as their look slowly degrades with their sales over time, making them realize that it was they looks that sold, not their abilities.
But even thought I had marked her off, I couldn't stop studying her like a bystander studies a car accident or a police arrest. No, bad analogy, more like a teenage girl who visits a jewelry store to look at wealth they will never achieve.
I had to firmly prevent myself from looking away from her when she suddenly raised her head to look me in my eyes. I timidly smiled at her, which fortunately provoked a similar reaction.
"Are you connected to the Internet ?", she asked with a beautiful rich voice.
"Yes, are you having a problem ?"
"My computer can't seem to authenticate on the network". Something in her voice was intriguing me, fascinating me, but I couldn't put my finger on.
"Mind if I have a look ? "
She muttered a muted note of gratitude and turned her computer toward me, therefore silently asking me to sit at her table.
As I looked at her configuration and constantly replaying her words in my mind, I realized the trouble with her voice. With my years of traveling across North America, I had become somewhat of an expert on English accents and yet, I couldn't quite guess her origin. The neutrality of her accent seemed to indicate a potentially Canadian origin, but the lacked the typical end of phrase slight increase in tonality.
I made a few technical comments during work on her laptop, hoping to get her to talk to me, or at least, to show my proficiency but instead, she silently sat next to me, concentrating on the screen as if she was both ignoring me and making sure she could recreate the settings herself the next time.
A little to soon I succeeded, when I discovered that no networks had been configured at all, prompting me to inquire on her usage of the laptop and if she ever got it connected to a network.
"I just bought my wireless card yesterday. The salesman told me it would work right away, but I guess he was wrong"
"It should have worked. I wonder, this isn't a recent laptop, you never used it on a network before ?"
"I got it used about a year ago, but I normally use my desk computer for the Internet"
"You should talk to you IT department. If they want one of their representatives to use their laptop on the road, they should prepare it"
"Representatives ? You got me wrong, I am self-employed."
"I am self-employed too! I am a computer network consultant. Here is my card".
After looking for a few seconds at my impressive card, she thanked me and put the card in her case. It is then I realized she had no purse, and instead only carried her laptop case.
"I am sorry, Mr Finley, I don't have a card, but I thank you very much for your help"
"Please, call me Mark"
"Very well Mark, I am Faith. Now, I don't want to be rude, but I really need to check my e-mails. Maybe we'll talk afterward. Once again, thank you"
"The pleasure was all mine Ms Faith. If you even get into trouble again, call me, regardless of where you are..."
We exchanged smiles, and I returned to my seat, hoping to get the chance to talk again or at least, to receive a phone call in the next few days by my hopes where in vain.
She did thank me another time when she left for her flight, but she didn't call or e-mail me even just to stay in touch.
Approximately four months later, two days before Thanksgiving, I was arriving in a cab to the airport in Cincinnati, when I saw Faith walking toward the taxi line. I ran toward her to greet her, and in a complete surprise, she remembered me.
"Hello Mark ! Nice meeting you again"
I kissed her hand, as a gentleman.
"The pleasure is all mine, Ms Faith"
"Are you leaving or arriving ?"
"I have a flight in less than an hour, so alas, I need to get checked in right away"
"It's really sad... I just arrived. I guess Mark, that we will meet some other time"
"I sure hope so. "
We kissed each other on the cheek as we said goodbye and I rushed to the check-in counter, sad to have missed her, but blissfully happy at her reminding me.
And then, on the next March, as I was moving up in an escalator at the Detroit airport, she was moving down in the escalator next to me. We greeted each other in surprise for a few seconds, but when I ran down, I was unable to find her.
About five months later, on a dull Monday in late August, I was reading a newspaper after eating at a restaurant for diner in Winnipeg, Canada, bored to death. While waiting for my bill my waitress gave me an ice cream covered brownies, which I remembered announced to be their specialty desert on the menu.
"I didn't order this", I replied, surprised.
"It came from the lady over there", pointing me to a table across the restaurant, where I immediately recognized Faith, who smiled and walked toward my table, to sit in front of me.
"I hope you like"
"I always like receiving treats from beautiful ladies"
"Thank you. You are making me blush".
Which wasn't the case : she was clearly in control of the situation. The ice cream was slowly melting on the hot brownies, and I
had no idea what to actually say, so I simply asked her how she was doing, and I dug in the ice cream, looking at her with interest.
"Doing well. Very busy. Had to come to Winnipeg for a congress, but I have two other events to visits before heading home, so I won't get much time free. I have a flight leaving in three hours."
As I was slowing eating my dessert, I pondered on where I should follow. I clearly wanted to know more about her, and she did seem interesting somewhat in me, but I had limited time. I realized she had the upper hand, knowing a lot more about me than I knew about her, which is very little considering she only had my business card.
I knew there was a farm tractor trade show but she evidently didn't come for that one, so I simply voiced that theory, hoping to get a rebuttal and more information :
"Funny, you don't look like a tractor groupie"
She laughed a little at my poor joke, showing me she was at least partially interested in me, thought in retrospect, the dessert I was eating was an even more powerful clue.
"I did have serious problems finding a hotel room because of that convention... No, I was at a smaller one"
She clearly didn't want to talk about it, or she would have named it. I decided to push things a little, trying to know something about her. Her answer, or lack of, would tell me how far she trusted me.
"May I ask what do you do for a living, in that case, Ms Faith ?"
I decided to play it seriously, to lock my eyes with hers.
Her little devious, yet challenging smile showed me she saw thru my veil and discovered that I was trying to get some contact information. Clearly, each of her words were carefully selected and she kept control.
"I guide people who stray away"
She took me by surprise. I carefully analyzed each of her words, trying to figure out exactly what she meant. Surely, she wasn't a tourist guide, so I formulate my hypothesis on her profession, carefully using the proper word, and not it's nickname :
"Like a psychologist ?"
She suppressed a small laugh which I hoped meant I was right, and not that I was laughable.
"Yes, a lot like a psychologist."
I decided to intrigue her a little...
"You know, in that case, we are of the same profession, you and I. You help people with their personal problems, and I help people with their computer problems, which are usually really personal problems"
She studied me silently, while I took my first bite in the brownie itself. It was really delicious. The mixture of the cold ice cream and the hot brownie excited my papilla almost as much as the duality of Faith's hot personality and cold demeanor.
"I never saw computer specialists to be particularly empathic, but sure, why not. Computers were made by people after all."
I couldn't see how I could get closer to her using this line of conversation. She was not losing control of the conversation framework and talking about work is particularly a bad approach, in my humble opinion. I had nothing to go on, so I simply slightly changed the subject.
"So, the lectures. Where they interesting at least ?"
"I couldn't tell, but people seemed pleased with the quality of my presentation. I seemed to have been understood during the panel discussion, which rarely occurs in the United States"
I was totally blown away. To become an expert in psychology required several years of university training, so she couldn't have finished her studies more than 2 or 3 years ago, certainly not long enough to be invited as a panelist on several congresses.
"Well, congratulation. Did you have time to celebrate ?"
"Not yet, I have to concentrate for my lecture in Salt Lake city tomorrow. It is always my worst of the year. But enough about that, I don't want to Jinx it. Talk to me about you"
I was always uncomfortable talking about me around woman I was interested in, but in her case, being a shrink didn't help me open up. We both knew she was in control, so switching the conversation to me was both a sign of disinterest in letting me in her bubble, but also an interest into getting into mine.
"Well, I guess this is the part I should talk about my relation with my mother."
I laughed a little, but she didn't, she didn't seem to understand it... I guess I just blew it. When your audience doesn't laugh, it is bad enough, but when you need to explain it, you have just killed yourself.
"You know, psychologists usually start by asking how was your relation with your mother... I guess you heard that one too often for it to be funny"
"No, it's the first time I heard that one. It is indeed funny, I should have seen it coming, but in my specialty, I am more focused on the relation with the father. So, I guess like me you live between airports ?"
I found the change of subject intriguing, but I decided to let it go, replying to her question in vague words, like hers.
"It sure seems so, always on the run, with clients everywhere. Keeps me busy, but I don't have all the time I would like."
"As they say, Pierre qui roule n'amasse pas de mousse"
I deciphered that this was French, but I hadn't used French since that single course in high school, about 15 years ago. My confusion, coupled with my mouth still eating the brownies prompt her to explain.
"It's French. a rolling stone gathers no moss."
"Yes, exactly. At first you miss your friends, but eventually, you end up receiving dessert from a nice psychologist the first time you saw her outside an airport. I guess it has it's perks..."
She laughed, which was a relief after the previous missed opportunity.
"You know Mark, we should plan a few dates together. How about passing each other in a corridor at the Anchorage airport in December ? And maybe going thru customs together at Mexico in January ?"
"Careful, that's two months in a row... are you sure you are not moving too fast ?"
Soon enough, we were both laughing, thought I suspect that she, like I, was mostly laughing at our pathetic lives. Unfortunately, all good things come to an end and she had to leave for the airport, while I had to return to my client. This time, I asked for, and got, her phone number: a toll free number, which I found odd, and which prevented me from know where she lived in North America.
"It is the only number you can sometimes reach me, thought most of the time you can't, so be patient"
She parted once again with kisses on the cheek, but I decided that this time, I would take matters into my own hands.
I quickly completed my contract that afternoon, and blindly bought a plane ticket for Salt Lake city. I know, it was reckless, but I didn't have anything more to do that week, so I decided to risk it, not even booking a hotel room.
Faith was intelligent, beautiful, interesting and seemed interested. And more importantly, like me, she traveled a lot meaning she wouldn't miss me at home, the biggest problem in my love life. Changing my port of calls for the week-ends was not a problem for me at all.
At Salt Lake cities, I checked the list of conventions, but couldn't find one for psychologists so I decided to visits each of the major conventions halls, in case it was one of the minor ones unlisted as a main event. It is only late in the afternoon that I found her picture at one of the religious conventions. She was one of the panelists, listed as Doctor Faith Connors, Th.D.
Theology doctor? She was no psychologist, she was a researcher in the science of religions. I could understand her reserve in discussing her work, but why lie about being a psychologist ?
Unfortunately, the panel was over and I quickly discovered that she had already left the convention after the panel discussion in which, just as she expected, was severely criticised.
I knew she had another convention this week, but asking around didn't reveal where. I did managed to discover she was from California, but unfortunately, no one actually knew from where, not being attached to a University unlike most of the attendants.
Even Google wasn't fair to me on her residence, but I booked a reservation for a convention in three weeks in Washington DC where she would debate in a panel on the role of woman in the history of organized religion. Contacting the organizers of the events only provoked a protest on the right to privacy of Doctor Connors.
When I finally returned home, a package signed "Mrs Faith" was waiting for me, delivered express from UPS : a pair of winter gloves, and an assorted scarf. A simple note was attached: "For our date in Anchorage".
The package was mailed from Salt lake city, proving not only that she still had my business card, but also that she carried it everywhere she went. Unfortunately, it didn't leave me with any information on how to contact her prior to her discussion in Washington D.C.
I tried calling several times her toll free phone number, but never got an actual answer or even a voice mailbox. I kept searching for contact information, but failed miserably. I couldn't even locate a University alumni site listing her as one of the graduates, despite the low number of schools offering a doctor's degree in Theology.
After 18 days of longing, I finally took the shuttle to the capital. I kept my eyes opened in the airport for Faith, in case our luck would repeat itself and provoke an early meeting. I did meet an acquaintance, a regular client in Washington leaving for a business trip, but there was no sign of my lovely doctor. It was a busy Friday morning, so even if she was at the airport, I would have trouble finding her.
While the convention seemed large, with hundreds of attendees, the room we were in was very small, with less than twenty attendees coming to see the three panelists debate the single topic Faith was signed up for.
I was very febrile, waiting for her to arrive when I heard her voice behind me, definitely not in the same mood as I had known her.
"What do you think you are doing here ?"
I turned to see her in a typical hostile pose with her arms and legs crossed, indicating hostility, or at best a lack of patience with me.
"Hello Mrs Faith, thank you for the gloves and the scarf. I can't wait until December."
She clearly wasn't amused, but the panel was about to start, so she told me in a hurry
"If you ever want to speak to me again, leave the convention right now and meet me across the street, at the bar and grill restaurant in two hours, otherwise, if you stay here we are history."
I decided to accede to her wishes, realizing I had already violated her privacy. I replayed in my mind the few moments I had just spent with her, as well as all of our previous discussions. Of course, "Relation with the father" meant with God, but I was still unsure on how to evaluate her.
After my fourth coffee, Faith sat to my table, smiling.
"It went well ?"
"One of my best panels ever. A few of the members of the audience even seemed to agree to my points. I feel like I am making some progress."
"That's really good to hear. I guess you are not mad at me anymore for showing up"
"I was not mad at you, listen Marc, it may seem strange, but you are the man I have felt the closest to in years despite our distance. I am usually idealized or castigated by man because of my views. I rather liked the fact you didn't know who I was, because then I could feel you like me for myself, not for what I do"
I could feel she was in pain, and I tried to help her.
"But I don't care what job you do or what you believe in, as long as you also, somewhere in your heart believe in me. I know how hard it might be for you. I am not blind, aside from some the employees of the convention center, you were the only woman attending. You seem to be attacking some pretty serious stereotypes out there, and I don't care if it offends the clergy, scholars or others. To me, you are a strong, intelligent, sexy and intriguing woman and love that."
Here eyes watered a little from the emotions. Clearly, her day had been a roller coaster and I wanted to be her island of tranquility, her landing platform.
"Now, I have been staring at that menu for two hours, and it is almost noon. I saw we put all of this behind us and we order something to eat. I am buying."
Right after she ordered a Caesar salad and I ordered some ribs, she left several minutes for the bathroom, most likely to decompress from the events in front of her. When she came back, I decided to let her bid her time, leaving her time in silence instead of harassing her even more.
After a few minutes of serenity, she broke the silence.
"How did you find me ? I never even gave you my full name..."
"After our meeting in Winnipeg, I took a chance and flew to Salt Lake city. When I found your convention, you were already gone, but I found your name and this convention."
"Yeah, Salt Lake city. If it wasn't for the money they pay me to attend, I would never go. I am happy you didn't find me there, because I was a wreck. They didn't criticize me, they tried to demolish me. And every year they offer to pay more to convince me to stay. It is turning into a "Let's bash Doctor Connors" convention"
"I am sad to hear that."
"Fortunately, San Diego the next day was better"
"I tried to call you a few times, but never got an answer"
"Yes, after that I was in Italy, my toll free phone number was not working there, so you couldn't reach me. I think I have been home only two days since Winnipeg."
"Poor you... I guess that didn't leave you any time to relax"
I started to give her a massage at the restaurant, and soon convinced her to go somewhere more private to talk and get to know each other. Within 30 minutes, I was giving her a full body massage in her hotel room. I barely had the time to survey the room that already, she was naked, lying on her stomach on the bed for my hands to remove her tension.
We talked some more while taking a bath together, this time a little about me, a little about her and a lot about our loneliness. I decided to dry her myself, which brought her to kiss me gently, which lead to first a sensual kiss, which wasn't broken until it became a passionate kiss on her bed. By the time we went asleep, we were exhausted of our romantic afternoon of love broken only by a trip to the hotel's restaurant for supper.
I woke up the next morning, alone in Faith's bed. I toured the room only to discover I was utterly alone. Fortunately, a note was left on the table.
"Mark, I had a great time with you and if my life wasn't so complicated, I wouldn't hesitate to get closer to you. You are wonderful man, and I only regret not having known you earlier, before I became a walking disaster.
The moments we spent together, both last night and at the various other times we met were magical to me. Nowadays, whenever I visit an airport, I think about you and long for your encounter, which only makes my travels harder to manage.
You do not want the trouble I would bring you if we were to date, so reluctantly, I decided to leave you alone. Do know that I love you and that you will always have a place in my heart,
I cursed at my heavy sleeping, and swore not to let things go by. I was furious at her pretension : who was she to decide what I wanted ? I longed for her as she did for me. In my opinion, the rest were just details to solve. I already went all across the country to get to her so a simple note will not suffice to keep me away.
She had made the mistake of leaving me with the hotel room key, most likely out of concern for me, a mistake that would cost her privacy dearly. After taking a well deserved shower, I walked down to the lobby to speak with the attendant, a young man barely out of high school. As I had planned, the room was already checked out, but I explained that my wife had paid with the wrong credit card, so I wanted to settle the bill, cancelling her payment. I explained that we were here for business, and that she had to run to her convention. After a lot of convincing and a very big tip, he allowed me to pay, which left me seeing the hotel slip along with her home address, in California.
I noted it down and took the first flight I could find to Los Angeles, the closet airport. I unfortunately, arrived too late to rent a car, so I waited in the airport itself on that lonely Saturday night until the rental office re-opened in the morning.
The drive was uneventful despite a few detours due to, well, human error. I still managed to reach her little one floor house around 10h20, only to find it empty and the streets of her small almost rural village equally deserted.
Several cars were at the local church, which was in a middle of service, but inside I couldn't find any traces of Faith so I left, much to the silent irritation of the priest.
I drove around, until I found a lot of cars in the parking lot of a building marked "New Gospel church", a yellow brick decrepit looking commercial "structure", for lack of a better words, in which all of the windows have been covered. There was only one service per week marked, for 10h00 on Sunday, but the front door was locked tight.
I could hear what sounded like gospel music on occasion coming from inside, but no way to enter, and I could only faint murmurs escaping from the heavy front door.
Lacking another option, I waited for the mass to finish in the parking lot. I looked at the people leaving, searching for Faith. When what looked for the last parishioner left, I entered, thinking Faith might have stayed to help the pastor, if she was inside at all.
The room looked like most other churches, only less decorative, as if it was a poor community. At first, I found odd the various clothes rack at the back of the church, but I figured it might have been for charity donations. After all, it's not like they needed winter coats storage down here in California!
I heard some noise coming from the back of the room, near the altar. I walked down the aisle, noticing movement behind the heavy draperies serving as the back wall to the stage. As I reached the altar, I saw Faith emerge from the draperies holding a book in her hands. She was completely naked.
"You again ? I thought I told you to buzz off"
"I am sorry, I didn't want to bother you. If you are busy with the pastor, I can understand...". I tried to now look at the woman I spent the night with only 2 days ago which I know, was rather ridiculous having actually slept with her, but I was still ashamed.
"You fool, I AM the pastor. You see why I thought you would not understand"
"Then why are you naked ?"
"First of all, I am not naked, I am nude. The first presumes I am missing something, which I am not. You see why I told you my life was too complicated".
She put the book on the altar, and proceeded toward the drapery. I followed her.
"But I don't care if you life is complicated or not. You never asked me what I wanted, you just assumed I didn't want to get closer to you. Remember, I didn't freak out when I learned you were a theologian and not a psychologist. What makes you think I would freak out now ?"
She picked a blouse from a pile of clothes loosely dropped on a chair, proceeding to button it without first putting on a bra.
"Because everybody does. At first, I met a few perverts who thought it was sexy, but eventually they realize I am not the slut they wanted or that I am way to complex for them. Eventually, you will turn out like them. You will leave like everyone else."
She had all but the last button fastened when she started crying, so I simply wrapped my arms around her, trying to console her. I stroke her hair for several minutes while she was wetting my shoulder with her tears, slowly calming down.
After putting on her panties and pants in silence, we walked toward one of the benches and while putting her socks and shoes, she explained the story of her life.
"I was always fascinated by the scripture. I mean, Jesus Christ was such a powerful historical figure, I couldn't brush him up. I mean, I was raised in a very conservative family when it comes to religion, so I went to church several times per week. A few things bothered me, but I couldn't put my finger on it. I thought it was because I was too young or because I did not know enough about the bible.
Always having a good memory, I knew most of the bible by hearth when I was sixteen, from cover to cover and I still had problems with it. I thought that God was incoherent with himself, and not really the good father that Jesus explained to us. This eventually let me to theology, where I tried to divide for my master thesis the bible into two different volumes : The words of God or inspired by God, and the words added by Men. I placed everything in the first book that was coherent with the teaching of Jesus Christ, and everything that wasn't in the second.
Let me tell one something, the second volume was considerably bigger than the first one, and I had to fight my way thru just to make the establishment accept my methodology and let me pass. For my doctorate dissertation, I explained the reasoning behind many of the sections I had been the first one to place in the second book, such as the ten commandment. It helped that my conclusions were somewhat similar to those of Martin Luther when he broke from the Catholic church.
Anyway, I must be boring you about the details. When I published by thesis, a lot of people wanted to see me at lectures, but no university wanted to hire me. I was left without a serious job, and my parents had long rejected me for my work. I was still very religious, but none of the Christian priests shared my vision. I decided, with the little I could spare, to buy this abandoned building and renovate it. I literally slept on the floor, and ate ramen noodles everyday, using the salary I received from my lectures as my only source of income.
At first, my "New Gospel Church didn't attract anyone, but I kept explaining at lectures that I had founded a new church based on what I believed to be the true word of God, and based on the real teaching of the Christ. Initially, the ceremonies were quite similar to the ceremonies of any other protestant church. I simply selected the texts I believe were true to the word of the Christ. Every time I was rejected at a convention, I became a little more extremist in my position until I stormed out of one of the panels, crying.
A nice couple approached me, explaining they were from LA, and that they thought my message was inspiring. They explained that they were trying to live they world according to the genesis, such as being mostly vegetarian, living in harmony, and without shame. I found it inspiring that some people wanted to be closer to the message of God, but it is only after a talking with them that I realized that in without shame, they meant they were nudists. They started to visit my church, bringing some of their friends who either shared their religious beliefs or at least, which were nudists too. The donations and work they did to help me restore the church really helped me financially. They friendship and company really helped me restore my confidence.
Not only were my sermons and service a lot more interesting and edifying, but I was also much more grounded in the panels and started to be invited more and more for my vigorous debating skills. But their help came with a price, if you want, they asked to assist to the celebration nude as in the Garden of Eden, and soon enough they wanted me to practice what I preached. I was initially torn apart at how my message was misunderstood : they only focused the first book of the Bible even thought my message was much bigger, but I still decided to do it, if only to try to educate them more. Their support greatly helped me, and I now consider myself a part-time naturist."
"Thank you for opening your heart like that Faith. You see, it wasn't so hard confiding in me. And guess what, I still love you. I don't mind if you are a nudist : I like you, not your clothes. As for you being a pastor, or being religious I mean, it could be worse. Well, unless I need to get circumcised... "
"No, that for the Jews, and one of the rules I think was made by man"
"See, we can get along. Give me a chance. You do like me ?"
"Yes, I think I love you"
"And I love you too. What is the problem ?"
"There are plenty... you live in New York"
"I'll move here"
"We barely know each other"
"Just give us time"
"I am always at conventions"
"And I work across the country, so I will be equally busy"
"You are not a nudist"
"You weren't either and you learned. Give me time, I'll get there"
"You seem to have thought of everything ?"
"No, I didn't. But I know that whatever life throws at us, we'll be able to fix it."
"What if I told you my religion required their pastors to be celibate ?"
"I'd fight to change that rule and try to convince the person in charge to change the rule"
"You could always start my kissing her"
"Man, dating a Pope does have it's privileges"
I know a lot of woman have a thing about altars, because represent marriage, commitment, romance. I don't know if Faith shared that fantasy, but I am not sure if he had the time to think about it when I started kissing her while she leaned to her altar. Who said religion and sensuality were not made for each other ?