Kathryn's Question Ch. 04byval wrangler©
It hadn't been a very good day at work. Every client that came into the store either had an unanswerable question or a bad attitude. Nothing I did seemed to be right.
Part of the problem could certainly be traced to the fact that the summer was drawing to a close -- and Kathryn and I both knew (and dreaded) what that meant.
Lately, we'd been spending more time talking about the coming year than having fun with each others' bodies. A couple of times I nearly chucked the whole Princeton thing to go to California with her. Screw school. I could always start next year.
That evening, I was waiting at home for Kathryn to get finished at the library. At quarter to 9, I was going to walk over to meet her and we'd go to the park for a bit of fun. At least something on this rotten day would turn out right. She'd promised we could use condoms between now and when we had to part since it was the wrong time of the month for us to have sex without protection.
About 8:30, though, the doorbell rang, waking me from a light doze. My mom and dad had taken my brothers to the movies, so I had to pry myself off the sofa and answer the door.
It was Kathryn. Her face was red, sweaty and she was crying. She'd obviously run all the way from the library which was a good mile distant.
"What is it? What's wrong?"
At first she couldn't speak. Her mouth opened but the words just wouldn't come out. I reached out to take her in my arms, but she reared back and slapped my face as hard as she could. That loosened her tongue.
"You bastard! How could you do it? Now everybody in town knows everything we've been doing! They all think I'm cheap and a slut and...and... She swallowed hard. "I hope that you're proud of yourself! I thought what we had was special and private, and now I find out you've been blabbing it all over town."
"What are you talking about? I haven't said anything to anyone."
She screamed, "Then how come everyone knows every detail of what we do?" With that, she slapped me again. "I hate you!"
Before I could say anything, Kathryn turned and ran down my front steps, leaving me standing there wondering what the hell had just happened.
Going back into the house, I sat on the sofa to gather my wits.
Kathryn had caught me completely by surprise and I'd been too groggy from sleep to respond until it was too late. What the hell had happened? I had to find out.
I went out the back of the house and crossed the yard, squeezing through the hedge as I had so many times before. Knocking on the wooden screen door of Kathryn's house, her mother, who was in the kitchen washing dishes, wiped off her hands and came over.
"Is Kathryn home?" I asked.
"Why, no. I thought she'd be with you." Then she looked over her shoulder. "It's not even 9:00 yet. She'll still be at the library working."
"No. She was just over at my place. She's very angry about something and I need to speak with her. Could you ask her to please call me when she gets home?"
"Certainly, Robert. I'm very confused by all this."
"So am I, Mrs. Miller. Please ask her to phone."
I waited until 10:00 and then tried calling her. Kathryn's dad answered the phone. He was always pretty gruff with me and this had only intensified when it became obvious we were "going together".
"Kathryn came home about 15 minutes ago and went right up to her room."
"Could you please ask if she'd speak to me?"
"She said she was going to bed. I'm not going to disturb her."
That was that. I went out to the back porch and could see that the light was out in her room, so she probably had gone to bed.
Next morning, before leaving for work, I went back over to her house.
"Kathryn's still in bed," her mom said.
"Could you check to see if she's awake? I'd really like to speak to her."
"I suppose I could. She has to be off to the library soon, anyway. Come in and sit down."
I sat at the kitchen table for a good five minutes before Mrs. Miller came back down.
"She says she doesn't want to speak to you."
"Did she say why?"
Kathryn's mom smiled, but it looked strained. "She said you'd ask me that, and told me to say that you'd know." She joined me at the small table. "Now what's happened between you two?"
I couldn't come out and actually say what it was, but I had to tell her something. "She and I, ah, had a bit of a fight. I've come over to apologize. Please tell her that."
She patted my hand. "Both my daughters can have very stiff necks. I'll tell her what you said."
Kathryn's shift that day coincided with mine, so when I got my lunch break I trotted over from the hardware store to the library to see if I could speak to her there. She'd find it much harder to avoid me.
But I was stymied in my attempt.
"Kathryn called in sick today," the head librarian told me, obviously peeved. "Honestly, she shows no consideration. We're shorthanded already with vacations and such."
The rest of the afternoon dragged by. When Mr. McGruder, the owner of the store, went out for a few minutes, I tried calling Kathryn, something that was strictly forbidden, but I didn't care if he caught me. My misery was too deep. The phone rang fifteen times before I gave up.
Part of me was starting to get angry. She hadn't given me any chance to explain that I had no idea what she was talking about -- and she certainly owed me that. If she didn't like me, well, love me anymore, then fine, come out and say it. This all sounded like some ridiculous misunderstanding.
I had to talk to her.
Six o'clock rolled around and I tore out of the store not 5 seconds later.
Kathryn's parents always went square dancing on Thursday evenings directly from work, and as it was two towns over, they'd be gone until well after eleven. Kathryn and I had been planning on trying out some of the condoms I'd worked up the nerve to buy. Who knew what was going to happen now.
I got home, jumped in the shower for a quick hose down of the day's dirt and threw on some clean clothes.
Kathryn's house was dark, but this wasn't unusual since the summer evenings were long. The back door was open and I entered, figuring it was probably best to just walk in on her, not give her a chance to run away again.
Downstairs was quiet, but the living room looked as if people had been partying there. Beer cans, glasses and an empty vodka bottle littered the tables. Melanie must have had some of her college-age friends over. If her parents found out about this, they'd really be steamed.
There were odd noises coming from upstairs, so I went up quietly. After only a few steps, I could hear squeaks like someone was moving on a bed and the short, sharp groans of a female being ridden hard. Then a male voice groaned. No lights were on, so in the twilight gloom, I couldn't see much and the origin of the sounds was not clear.
Could Melanie be making it with a guy in her room? And where was Kathryn? Probably gone with her parents so she could avoid me.
At the top of the stairs it was obvious that the sounds were not coming from Melanie's room, which was on the right. She couldn't be doing it in her parent's room. That was nuts.
Now anybody reading this is going to wonder just how slow I could be, but I was just completely trusting in those days. It never dawned on me that the sound could be coming from Kathryn's room.
Within three steps, though, I knew.
A male voice I sort of recognized said, "C'mon, hurry up! it's my turn again."
"Why don't you just go around to the front end and stick it in her mouth. She seems to like that."
A half dozen more steps and I was standing at the partially closed door to her room.
They never saw me, or were too busy to notice. Clement Rice and Joe Houghton were in there. I detested both. They were the loud-mouthed, narrow-minded bigots that represented everything I, and up until this point, Kathryn detested about the town where we grew up.
Both boys were naked, as was Kathryn. They had her kneeling across her bed. Joe was behind her, standing on the floor, jabbing his cock into her for all he was worth. Clem had climbed up on the bed and stuck his dick in Kathryn's mouth. The two of them were moving her between them, Clem with his hands on the sides of her head, Joe with his hands on her hips.
My heart was pounding and I felt as if I'd explode. I was consumed by rage at what I was seeing. But at the same time incredible sadness washed over me. Why was Kathryn doing this? She'd been so upset the night before that someone thought she might be a slut. Here she was BEING a slut!
The action in the room froze as I flung open the door. Kathryn turned to goggle at me wide-eyed with Clem's cock still in her mouth.
"What are you doing here?" Clem sneered.
"Get away from my girl!" I screamed.
Joe looked at me with disgust, as if I was a bug he'd like to step on. His hands remained possessively on Kathryn's hips, keeping the length of his cock firmly planted inside of her. "Your girl? I don't think so."
Kathryn was beginning to struggle now, but both boys kept her firmly between them.
"How long has this been going on?" I asked.
Clem laughed. "All summer. She's been putting out for us all summer. I guess you didn't know."
I was struck dumb and seemingly rooted to the floor. Kathryn must have done the only thing she could and bit into Clem's cock. He screamed, then jumped back cursing.
"Robby, I can explain! It's not like that!" she finally wailed.I felt a tap on my shoulder. I turned to see Melanie.
She yanked me back, closing the door and pulled me down the hall.
"So you've found out my little sister's secret."
"What do you mean?"
"You didn't think she'd been fucking only you this summer, did you?"
"What are you talking about? Kathryn loves me."
"Then why is she fucking two people you dislike? Why is she fucking anyone other than you?" Melanie reached up and patted my cheek. "You are so dense. I tried to tell you the other day."
My head was spinning. I angrily pushed her hand away. "You're wrong.
Mel smiled knowingly. "Then why is she still in that room with them pushing their cocks into her from both ends?"
We both stopped to listen.
Clem's voice came through the door. "Hold her there. She really seems to like that. Oh God, she's good."
I'd heard enough.
Pulling myself away, I stumbled down the stairs, through the house and made it to the backyard before I dumped my dinner all over the ground. Through Kathryn's open window I could hear those two bastards enjoying themselves with my girl. The girl I thought love me. The girl I'd wanted to spend my entire life with.
I forced myself through the space in the hedge for the last time, tears streaming down my face and a hole in my heart the size of the Grand Canyon.
That night I made my decision and began packing for school. There was no way I wanted to spend another hour in this town. When my family got home from the movies I was just about done.
The next morning, I got on the phone with the school and spoke to the head of student residency to find out if I could get in a week early. I lied that my parents were going to be away and the only time they could drive me up there was the next day, otherwise I didn't know how I could get to school. I told him I'd help clean the dorms, do anything, if he'd let me come and I guess I sounded desperate enough that he finally took pity on me.
My parents knew immediately that something was horribly wrong, but couldn't draw me out. What could I tell them? Nothing. But at least they understood that I really needed to get away.
We set out that afternoon and drove part way. That night while we ate in a restaurant, I told my dad who was doing the parental duty on the trip, my mother staying home with my brothers, that Kathryn and I had a big fight and had broken up.
"I just don't want to be within a hundred miles of her right now. To have her in the next yard was just too unbearable."
"Is this final?" he asked kindly. "I have to admit I like the girl. You've gotten along so well for so many years."
"Oh, yes, Dad, it's final. I never want to see her again."
He was smart enough to let the subject drop and not pry into my private affairs any further. My dad was always good that way.
Princeton was overwhelming and the sheer volume of work helped me bury the painful memories through most of the days. Nights were bad, though, when I was alone with my thoughts. It was really quite horrible. I'd been taken for such a ride.
I pledged for a fraternity and was accepted after the usual week of hell, commonly known as hazing, which was still the norm in those days. My frat brothers helped pull me out of the deep depression and once I started circulating, I found that coeds were quite willing to do the most astonishing things with no guilt, no hang-ups, no bullshit. The size of my member made me quite popular once the word got around -- and I made the most of it.
When Christmas came, I told my disappointed parents that I wouldn't be home. There was no way I wanted to take a chance of seeing Kathryn or be laughed at by anyone in town. I knew for certain I would lash out and I wasn't about to jeopardize my college education by getting myself arrested.
My parents seemed to understand and didn't fight it, but the next day, my mom called and said she'd spoken to Jeannine Miller, Kathryn's mom, and Kathryn would not be coming back from California for the holidays.
"Please come home," she said, and with the change of situation, I couldn't decently say no, but I hardly left the house the whole time I was there. My emotions were still too fragile.
That came to be the norm in the intervening years. The two moms would talk and if one of us was coming home, the other would stay away. It seemed Kathryn didn't want to see me as much as I didn't want to see her.
After the first term, I switched my major to chemistry and I just took off academically. My marks were at the top of the class, and professors fought over me to get my assistance with their own work -- unheard of for a freshman. I was in my element.
I continued to cut a swath through the coeds until my junior year. That's when I met Ellen. Looking back on it now, I can see how much she physically had in common with Kathryn. Both were tall, dark and quite pretty. Ellen had bigger breasts and a fuller figure, but they shared a lot of the same physical traits.
We fell head over heels for each other and I found out pretty soon that Ellen had far different ideas about sex than Kathryn. It wasn't until our third date that I kissed her. It took almost a year before she let me touch her breasts, let alone see them. She wanted to save herself for marriage. I loved her so much I didn't care.
Right after graduating, we tied the knot. She became a high school teacher and I continued in school, getting my masters before we packed up and went to Boston where I earned my doctorate at Harvard.
With no trouble I got a gratifying number of job offers from both universities and corporations. I took a research position with a company and did very well over the years. The money was great and they were forward thinking in that I also got a small portion of the profits on anything I came up with up with that got put into production. It wasn't a very large percentage, but over the years the money mounted up
There were only two dark clouds in my life in those years: we found out early that Ellen couldn't have children and our sex life was pretty boring. My wife, frankly, must have had a low sex drive to start with, and the disappointment of not being able to have a family took what little steam she had out of her. She'd still "take care of me" when I needed it, but it was nothing like what I'd enjoyed with Kathryn.
But we were happy together, fast friends, and that was all right. If Ellen had been a sexual person like Kathryn, I probably never would have felt comfortable, always expecting something bad to happen.
Occasionally, I'd hear little bits of news about my former girlfriend. She was cutting a wide swath through the Psych department at Stanford and then went on to get a doctorate and she wound up teaching in Berklee, eventually becoming a full professor at a young age.
You can imagine my shock when I turned on a talk show in the late 70s to find her as a guest talking about her new book which was about (you guessed it) sex.
I sat there listening to her familiar voice, seeing the same mannerisms: playing with a strand of hair when she was concentrating on something, her quick smile and the way her hands moved whenever she explained something that really interested her.
She was the same person -- but also very different. Her face was leaner, all the baby fat gone and her body looked toned and lithe. Her clothes were of the best (probably at the behest of her publisher since she'd never cared about things like that when I'd known her) and her hair was now blonde.
Kathryn had become a stunningly beautiful woman.
But the charm had been broken long ago and emotionally I felt very little. As a matter of fact, I turned off the interview to watch a ball game.
Over the next seven or eight years, I occasionally saw a new book from her (always on the subject of sex) and would see her name as a guest on TV shows or magazine articles written by her. She became known as The Sex Doctor and got a syndicated radio phone-in show.
In our sixteenth year of marriage, my dear Ellen became very ill. It was cancer and there wasn't anything that could be done by the time it was diagnosed. Believe me, we tried.
By then, I was very well off and I would have paid everything I had to pull her out of this. It was heartbreaking to watch her just waste away until she was little more than a hollow-eyed shell and I was holding her hand through her final hours in hospital.
Her death shattered me and my work consequently suffered. The president of the corporation finally appeared one day in my lab and sat me down.
"You need time off, Robert," he said. "You're no good to us this way and no good to yourself. Take a long holiday, travel. Heal yourself."
I spent the weekend thinking about it, and decided he was right. With a year off, I travelled the world, revisiting all those places I'd seen with Ellen, using the time to say goodbye to her. It was hard. I felt so all alone.
It was also healing. Time and distance began to do their thing and I felt myself more at peace.
At the end of my year, I got a call from my mom. Dad had suffered a bad heart attack and was in pretty dire shape.
"I think you should come home, Robert," she said with her usual calmness.
I got a chance to spend two days and nights at my father's bedside before he gently drifted away.
That night, Mom and I were sitting around the kitchen table. My two brothers and their families had headed off to the motel for the night. We talked for a long time about things that had happened over the years. Even though her heart must have been breaking, Mom seemed more concerned for me.
Eventually, the topic we'd never discussed came up.
"I've always been curious about what happened between you and Kathryn Miller," she said.
I took a deep breath and actually smiled. "I found out she was not the person I thought she was," I answered simply.
"She hurt you very deeply."
"You can't imagine."
"Strange line of work she took up. Folks around town thought it was very odd. Imagine making one's life talking about sex. She was never like that when you knew her."
I bit my tongue and just nodded.
Two more years passed and my company sent me out to the Left Coast to give the keynote address at an academic gathering. It went well and I was the surprised recipient of one of the chemical industry's top prizes. I had a wonderful time and actually came out of my shell enough to return the flirting of two pretty, young colleagues from another company. Nothing came of it, but it was nice to be noticed.