Building A Perfect Life

bySW_MO_Hermit©

Don just sat and stared at her, then at the family. His face got red and his eyes shot fire. Before anyone else could say anything he lashed out saying, "You little Bitch! Now I know why you never talked to me about your trip or even let me know you were going. You FUCKING SKANK! Now I know why you didn't write me or call when I was in the states. You were too busy fucking your damn college friends. Well Fuck You. Get the hell out of my face. I don't need your kind of love."

Tammy was crying so hard she could hardly breathe. Her parents were looking at Don with anger in their face and his parents were looking at him in horror. His mother said, "Don, how could you talk like that? I thought you loved Tammy. Cursing her and calling her names won't solve your problems."

"I don't have any problems Mom. After I get my ring back from the Skank she's the only one with a problem. Oh, I guess I do have a small problem. I can't seem to pick a monogamous wife. Well, at least I found out about her before I screwed up and actually married the skank."

Mrs. Stone was staring daggers at Don as she and her husband rose, helping Tammy from the house. She was crying so hard she could hardly see. At the door she pulled free from her parents and turned to face Don. She said, "Don, I'm so, so sorry. I still love you but I was so angry with you going off and leaving me I guess I just lost sight of what was important. I was so lonely and I needed to be held. I'm sorry."

Don stood and stumbled to the stairs without saying a word to anyone. He spent most of the remainder of the day alone in his room. He did eat a sandwich his mother brought him for lunch.

The days passed and Don recovered, making several trips to the nearest military post—Ft. Leonard Wood, MO—for medical checks and physical therapy. His promotion to PO2 came through just before Christmas. He was learning to live without Tammy in his life but it was hard.

He would see her occasionally in town and she would look at him longingly. He felt sick inside as he watched her belly swell with another man's child. Finally the holidays were over and Don returned to his base.

The last few months of his enlistment were long and lonely. He almost tried to reenlist but when he broached the subject to his medical team they told him his injuries were such that he would be medically refused. The fun had gone out of life for him and he had no desire to do anything any longer. Nothing mattered to him any longer. He just wanted to get away from it all. Finally he was discharged, three years and ten months after enlisting. He had lived part of his dream. He had gone to sea and seen the world but it had cost him dearly. He had lost the love of his young life because of it and because of his injury he would never walk normally again.

Don had saved much of his money during his enlistment with the intent of using it to support his new wife when he returned home. Since he was not now going to have a wife any time soon he decided to trade in his old truck for a newer one and drive home. He would collect the mileage instead of letting the navy purchase his airline tickets.

The day he got out Don's first stop was the local Ford dealership. He bought a truck he thought he would need when he returned home. They had a nice two year old F150 SuperCrew 4X4 with low mileage. From the looks of the truck it was a city truck and had never been off paved streets. Don got it for about half what a comparable new one listed for.

Don did not tell his parents when he was getting home. He just took off driving and took his time. If he saw a place he wanted to stop he did but six days after he mustered out he was driving down the street of his home town of Steelville. Nothing seemed to have changed and he was smiling. He even saw and waved at a couple of friends. It was late evening and Don decided to stop at the local young people's hang out for a while before he went home.

When he drove up and parked some of the young teen agers glared at him. To them he was a stranger and intruding on their space. Finally a couple of older boys recognized him and greeted him. He was standing drinking a Coke talking about the Navy when he glanced out the window. Across the street at the local store he saw Tammy putting groceries into her old truck. She then leaned down and picked up a small child from the cart.

The child was obviously of mixed race. It appeared to be part Hispanic or perhaps Italian. He felt his stomach clench and roil as he remembered how she had slutted around. He remembered her European trip had wandered through Germany, France, Spain and Italy. Apparently her college friends were not the only ones she had shared sleeping accommodations with. Of course from what he had heard during the 'Leave From Hell' she had been staying in what they called Youth Hostels over there and even camping out a lot. There would have been ample opportunity for her to sleep with one of the locals.

Tammy gave the child a kiss then proceeded to strap it into a child seat before she got in behind the wheel and drove away in the direction of her parents' farm. All at once Dons desire to visit left him. He threw the half empty Coke cup away and got into his truck. He followed Tammy out of town but turned into his families' driveway.

He drove into the barnyard and parked in his usual place beside the old Oak tree. The porch light came on and his mother appeared in the kitchen door. Don got out of the truck and grabbed his overnight bag from the back. By the time he reached the patio his mother had screamed in joy and came to meet him. He was hugging her tightly when he looked over her shoulder and saw his father coming out the door.

After a happy reunion they all entered the house for an evening of visiting. At one point his mother asked, "Have you called Tammy and let her know you are coming home? She asks about you almost every time I see her you know."

"I saw her and her little bastard in town but I didn't talk to her. We have nothing to say mom. And no, she doesn't know I am coming home and I have no intention of looking her up. That ship has sailed and I don't intend to try to board it. She fucked our life away and now she has to live with the consequences."

"Oh, Don how can you be so cruel? That girl still loves you with all her heart. She just made a mistake and believe me she is paying for it. She has to put up with a lot of guff around here. As far as I know she has never dated anyone since she got back from Europe. He mother said she dropped out of college and of course she moved back home right after she told you about her accident. I know she works at the feed mill in town for the Fielding's and never dates anyone from around here. She told her mother she was waiting on you to get your head out of your ass and realize you still belonged together."

"Well mom that dog don't hunt. She better get used to the idea we DON'T belong together. Now if you're going to keep up with that crap I'll just move on. I'm done talking about it."

The next two days Don just wandered around the farm relaxing. He still loved the place and was looking forward to getting back to work. He had taken enough college courses and received enough credit for his navy training while he was gone to have an Associate's Degree. He didn't know if he wanted to continue on and get a Bachelors Degree or not. He got the catalogue from the local university to help him decide. Don still had almost thirty thousand dollars in his bank accounts that he was going to use for college if he decided to go.

One day Don was driving down the road between his parents' farm and their neighbors. He had driven down that road several times since coming home because it was the one he used to get to the river and his favorite swimming hole. This time Don saw a for sale sign hidden in the brush and weeds. The place between their farm and the Stone place was for sale. It was only 80 acres but there was 60 acres of good cropland that the family could farm and the other 20 acres was along the river and mostly wooded. This was the place the swimming hole was on and Don especially loved the portion of the place that bordered the river.

Don remembered there was a nice cave above the flood line and back from the river about three hundred feet. He hadn't been there while swimming and decided to look at it before he went home. The previous owner had power ran down to the cave and had built some small picnic shelters and a snack bar along the river bank. He rented a few canoes and camping spots for several years before insurance and other expenses got so high he just quit.

Don drove onto the land and walked around this time instead of just joining the two or three people swimming in the river. He felt more relaxed when he was at the cave than he had been in years. He found a comfortable looking spot and sat watching the young people laugh and play in the water and on the river bank. Occasionally a canoe would float past. He returned to his truck after he had sat listening to the peaceful sounds for a while. Don returned to the road and called the number on the for sale sign. Over the course of the next several days he and the owner negotiated the sale of the land. It had been for sale for several months and the owner wanted to get out from under it.

He had been asking $160000 but Don pointed out there were no buildings on the land, no well or other improvements and the cropland was not prime. The end result of the negotiations was that Don purchased the land for $145000 with $15000 down and the owner carrying the mortgage. Don figured the other $15000 could be used to put in a well and some type of living quarters.

His small partial disability pension for his injuries was enough he could make do with either part time work or his share of the farm profits. If he returned to college his GI education benefits would help even more. He and his father had already agreed on a profit sharing arrangement for the new land and the family farm if Don helped on the places. Don had only been home three weeks and he knew he could not live with his parents. He couldn't fit his life back into their home and follow the rules they had in their house. He was still feeling the hurt from Tammy's betrayal and his mother was friends with Delores, her mother, and her. They visited back and forth routinely and he did not want to see or talk to either of the Stone women. In fact, he didn't really want to talk to any woman right now. He had seen many women shit on their men and cheat while he was in the Navy and he was fed up with the entire gender.

Don decided to enroll in college in the fall. He had a little over two months to solve his housing problem and he set out to do so in a manner that would suit him and be relatively inexpensive. It cost $5000.00 to drill a well and equip it near the cave and camp on his new land. There was a large bluff overhanging the entrance to the cave and Don went to work. He poured a concrete floor under the bluff beside the cave entrance. This floor was 25 by 50 feet and he placed his pipes and heat ducts in the cement.

Next Don ordered several loads of limestone of various sizes. He built walls on his cement pad for his house then used the limestone to make a rock building. When he finished the shell of his house you could barely see the house it blended into the bluff so well. As he placed the limestone he poured cement between the limestone and the wooden walls of the house so he had 6 inch wooden walls then 6 inches of concrete and another 4 to 8 inches of limestone. He was planning to heat his house with wood from an outside furnace and cool it at least partially with the cool air from the cave.

Of course Don did not work on his new home every day because of the farm work. Other days he spent the entire workday building his home. Some days his father helped him also. When the crops were sold in the fall Don expected a cash infusion to help pay for college and more of his building.

All of this building almost depleted his savings. Don was living in the unfinished shell of the house but he didn't care. He had power, heat and cooling and a well insulated if unfinished building to live in. Don had also poured a nice cement patio under and just outside the bluff area to sit on during his free time. For the first time since he had left for the navy Don was completely content.

Several times during the late summer Don saw a very beautiful woman come to the swimming hole. For some reason she looked familiar but he didn't know where he had seen her or even if he had ever seen her before. She almost always came alone but occasionally she came with one or two other women about her age. She seemed like she was maybe 19 or 20 but who knew. When she came alone she was always careful and did not stay long if others were there. Many times he saw her drive up to the swimming hole and leave without swimming when she saw some rough looking young men there. If there was a mixed crowd of young people swimming the girl would stay longer most evenings. Don never saw her engage in the horseplay that was common among the swimmers. Don had posted his side of the river bank and most people were careful to not come onto his land. There was a much easier access across the river anyway so why bother?

One day Don went to the Steelville Feed and Farm Supply store to order some seed wheat and pay some bills when he came face to face with his past. He had only been into the store twice since he got home and both times he had talked to an older lady. This time when he entered Tammy was working at the counter.

Don took a deep breath and walked up. When she saw him she broke out into a smile and said, "Don. You're sure looking good. How are you today?"

Don clenched his jaw and started to turn away. He forced himself to relax and turned back to the counter. He ignored her inquiry and gruffly said, "I need to pay this bill and order some seed wheat."

Tammy looked shocked and hurt. She got tears in the corner of her eyes and pressed her lips together. "Don, I'm so sorry. I'll get someone." She walked rapidly from the counter.

Don was standing there seething and trying to decide whether to leave or what to do when he heard another set of footsteps coming toward him. With his face still set in an angry expression he turned to talk to the new arrival.

Don stopped in mid turn when he saw the girl from the river. She was almost more beautiful in street clothes than in her swim suit. She was smiling but seemed worried also. "Yes Sir. How may I help you? She said.

Don took a deep breath and explained why he was there once more. The girl smiled and said, "Oh, no problem. We can take care of that right over here." She gestured to the far end of the counter where there was a computer and another register. When she and Don walked down to the new area Tammy came out of the back office and began waiting on the people who had been in line behind Don. She kept giving him sorrowful looks and he could see the tears running down her cheeks. Twice she stopped and wiped her face off with her fingers.

Don watched the girl look over at Tammy several times and stare at him a time or two also. After they had finished their business Don thanked her. She smiled tentatively at him and returned to the office from which she had come. Don turned and left the building. He neither looked at nor spoke to Tammy.

That evening after the business had closed Tammy was getting her daughter from the room the Fielding's had set up as a child care room. It had initially been built for Charlie and Amanda's children but now it was used for children of their employees also. Molly Fielding came up to Tammy and asked, "Ok, why don't you tell me what that is all about. The Browns have been customers for years and there was nothing about that business that you couldn't handle. And why the tears and haunted looks?"

Tammy's shoulders began shaking and she collapsed onto a nearby chair. She looked up at Molly and said, "I was supposed to marry Don. We had been together since before we started school and neither of us ever had another serious relationship. After our senior year instead of going to college with me like we had planned he joined the navy and left. I was so pissed and so hurt that I decided if he was going to run around all over the world and party I would too."

I was pretty wild the first year of college and dated several men but I never had sex with them. Don came back that spring and proposed to me at my birthday party. He wanted to marry and for me to join him at his next post. I told him I would marry him but I refused to do it until he was out of the navy. I was still angry and I didn't want to be all alone that far from home while he was off touring the world so I accepted but never told anyone about our engagement. I wore the ring that night and until he left then took it off."

"The next summer I let one of the boys I ran around with in college talk me into spending the summer in Europe with him and some of his friends. I didn't know it but there were seven guys going and only three girls including me. The other two girls were pretty much round heeled sluts but I didn't know that until we got there. I had met them and thought they were ok but boy was I surprised."

"We stayed in Youth Hostels most of the time but sometimes we camped out. There was a lot of drinking and it always seemed like the friend I let talk me into going always had some grass. Those two girls fucked like rabbits and didn't care if they had an audience or not. The first night there they pulled a train and I was horrified. I wanted to go home but I just couldn't. I told myself I would just go along with the group and enjoy my summer and put up with their lack of morals."

"The next six days it seemed like every night we drank, smoked and they fucked. I kept getting horny watching and listening. I tried to quietly take care of myself but one night Jared caught me. He smiled and I was just messed up enough I didn't run him off when he began kissing me and helping me play with myself. Before I knew it he was fucking me and the others were watching. It wasn't much longer and I was pulling the train like the other two girls. After a while we began trading sexual favors with the local boys and men for extra cash or something we wanted like a better room or even a room in a hotel."

"I kept telling myself I would have that little fling and never cheat on Don again. After all he was probably fucking every woman he could talk into a horizontal position too and he would never know what I was doing in Europe. About two months before we were to come home I lost my supply of Birth Control Pills somehow. I couldn't get more and didn't want mother to even know I was taking them. I told the guys if they wanted any more pussy from me they had to use rubbers. They all agreed they would but that lasted about three days. We got high and the first one or two used a rubber then the rest just did me bareback like we had before. Well in any event I got pregnant with Dora and couldn't face the thought of aborting her. I was sure Don loved me enough to marry me anyway but I guess I was wrong."

"He was one of the sailors injured in the Cole bombing and when he came home on his convalescent leave I was already beginning to show. My parents and I went over to his house the day after he got home to tell him and discuss the wedding. He threw a tantrum and called me a cheating skank then walked out of the room. Until today that was the last time I talked to him and..."

Tammy broke down crying once more. Molly knelt beside the chair and hugged her then said, "Oh, Tammy. I knew you had been dating Don for some time when we were young but, well when I saw you at college and you were running around so much I just thought you had broken up when he left for the navy."

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