A very special thanks to Frontma for making this submission a better read.
Victor gave a grunt of annoyance as he watched the breaking news on the TV about the latest sex scandal involving a top army General and one of his aides, a married lady with two young kids. The next clipping showed the now disgraced General telling some reporters that it had been a morally incorrect decision on his part. He was sombre faced and looked a lot thinner than in some of the pictures shown earlier with his aide, now also known to be his mistress.
"Funny how they all wring their hands and say some sorry remarks AFTER they have been caught," he said to his wife of over thirty years.
He glanced at Vanessa as he said that. They were in their living room catching up with the news after dinner like they had always done for the past so many years. They had made this a habit of theirs so that they could share some quiet time together, especially during the years their children were growing up and free time or "us" time was a commodity in real short supply. Now both their children, James and Karen, were adults and had their own families. James was 30 and an electrical engineer. He had married his childhood sweetheart a few of years ago and they had a three-year-old daughter. Karen, at 28, was the younger one and had married a guy she met in her office. They had a two-year-old son. Victor himself was 59 years of age and Vanessa was a couple of years younger than him. She was and always had been a fitness freak and that showed in her well-toned 5'8'' body with big juicy-mama boobs and a derriere that still made heads turn. No doubt the effects of gravity and age were discernible, but they were only just discernible. Her brown hair had that just-right tinge of white streaks in it which went well with her green eyes and cheerful face and, as far as Victor was concerned, his wife was one hot mama and grandma. Just a glance at his wife sitting next to him began a stirring in his loins. He may be a year short of sixty but long walks on a daily basis along with Vanessa and power yoga helped in keeping his equipment going strong and steady. Some of his colleagues were already having high BP, high sugar levels and related issues. He was lucky. At six feet, with silver grey hair and blue eyes, he looked more like a successful CEO than a retired technocrat. Victor looked fondly at Vanessa. Her favourite serial was coming up next and he shifted closer to her and placed his right hand on her thigh. He knew her well. A bit of foreplay in the midst of her favourite serial never failed to turn her on. He could get lucky tonight.
"I suppose like any other two adults in an affair by mutual consensus, they never thought they would get caught one day," she replied with a toss of her neatly coiffed brown hair, her green eyes fixed intently on the telly screen.
Victor turned back to watch the news. A retired war veteran was now on the screen telling the world how difficult these constant foreign postings were. The men would be away from their families for months in a row and, well, men would be men. He then went on to say that the General in the dock for putting his pecker in the wrong hole had been to six foreign postings in the last ten years. His manner and style of presentation left the listener in no doubt that the concerned lady aide of his, who was also married like he was, had been his only source of entertainment at an otherwise tough and cold frontier.
"Do you think the absence of the near and dear ones and the resultant loss of companionship can be considered to be a genuine and forgivable reason for adultery?" asked Victor.
He was not sure but for a moment his wife's body seemed to have tensed up and then relaxed. He had been gently stroking her thigh and he was sure his palm had felt that sudden tensing but he could not really be sure why.
She was silent for a minute or two as though considering her thoughts and then she replied, "We live in a society where gay marriages are no longer frowned upon, couples are in open marriages, live-in relationships are not even worth talking 'bout ... in short, it would depend upon the individuals concerned. It would be wrong for anybody else, including us, to pass opinions on matters that are essentially personal in nature. "
Victor digested his wife's reply. It seemed a bit hazy, answering but then not really answering what he had asked. By "individuals" had she meant the man and woman involved in the affair alone or perhaps also about their respective relationship with their spouse or partner also? Did she mean that it was okay to cheat if the couple were in an unhappy relationship with their respective partners and craved the companionship of the opposite sex?
Victor's mind didn't get any more time to ponder his wife's replyas Vanessa shifted her position at that time and her legs opened up invitingly. Victor wasted no time in moving his caressing fingers closer to her womanly treasure. His hands grazed his wife's panties and he felt the heat emanating from her core. Vanessa's serial was now playing on the TV and she was completely engrossed in the unfolding story. With his hand playing over her panties, Victor took her juicy left boob in his mouth from over her flimsy nightie and began sucking upon it. Vanessa responded by pulling his face into her breast and running her fingers thru his hair. This took him by surprise as she normally reached this level of arousal only towards the end of her favourite serial. Her love tunnel had also attained a level of arousal that made sure her panties were soaking wet. He pushed aside the fabric and began running his fingers up and down her vaginal opening. Vanessa let out a low moan even as her eyes continued to remain fixed on the screen. Her hand travelled down and into his boxer shorts. She wrapped her fingers around his hardening shaft and began to gently stroke him. She began pumping his shaft in tandem with his fingers moving in and out of her wet tunnel.
They continued with their foreplay for some more minutes till Vanessa breathed out her wish. "Take me, Victor, take me now," she whispered, breathing highly irregularly. Now Victor was completely surprised. It would be the first time they would be doing it on the sitting couch even before the serial came anywhere near to a close for the evening but he wasn't complaining. He quickly stepped out of his clothes and then watched Vanessa as she adjusted herself and stuck her ass up in the air, her nightie pulled up and around her waist. By now the serial was all but forgotten. For some moments he stood behind his wife, stroking his lengthening cock as he admired her smooth, round ass. Her vaginal lips were parted and he could see the inner pink lips. His cock had stretched out to its complete six-and-a-half inches; it was long and on the thinner side, the circumcised head a bright tomato red. Victor moved closer and lovingly ran his palms over his wife's buttock cheeks, caressing them, admiring them. He then began running his tongue up and down her ass crack, leaving a trial of wet saliva.
"Ohhh ..." moaned Vanessa as her womanly scent filled up the room. Her eyes were closed tight and her mouth was half open as she enjoyed the sexual sensations building up inside her. Finally, Victor stood behind his wife and began rubbing his knob up and down Vanessa's wet slit. "Aahhh ... yes! Yes, put it in, Victor Brown. I need you" she moaned out softly, knowing fully well that the real fun was just about to begin.
The next morning Victor left early for his old firm's office. A couple of years earlier he had resigned from his post of Vice President. His company really didn't want him to go; he had been with them for over twenty years, beginning as a site engineer and gradually making his way up the hierarchy. But Victor was adamant. He had discussed the issue with Vanessa before taking it up with his company. With their children taking up jobs and starting families, the two felt they needed more "my time" for meeting their extending families more often. In a couple of years Vanessa would also be putting in her papers. They finally agreed that he would continue to be associated with them as a consultant. The idea appealed to Victor as he could continue to be in touch with the construction industry while his old company would benefit from his vast experience. As per understanding, Victor would visit the office two to three times a week unless something important came up. This gave him ample free time to pursue his hobbies, namely golf. On the other hand, Vanessa held a senior post in the accounts department of a company having a chain of retail shops across the state. She had been with them for the past ten years, ever since they relocated from Dallas to Houston when he had been promoted and had to move over to the head office. In fact, it was the hard work put in by her in her previous firm in Dallas and the glowing letter of appreciation given by her old boss Harry Wolman that had helped her get the new job. Harry had been well acquainted with the owners of the retail chain and when they had decided to move over to Houston, he got in touch with them and helped Vanessa get the job. The two were grateful to Harry for that. Back in Dallas, Vanessa had joined Harry's company as soon as Karen was old enough to go to school and had been there from that time until their move to Houston, almost fourteen years. The decision to move to Houston had not been much of a problem as by then, both the children had finished school and gone off to college. Given her long association with his company, Harry went the extra mile in ensuring she got the job. There were times when Victor would fondly recollect their years spent in Dallas. Both their kids had been born and raised there and sometimes he wished they had settled there after retirement but Vanessa had not been keen. As she reasoned, they were closer to their kids and grandchildren from Houston and that mattered more than the nostalgic memories of the past. Better to live in the present than the past had been her line of reasoning. Victor didn't see any reason to argue with that and with the consultancy offer, it didn't seem to be a bad choice at all.
That evening there were some more updates in the prime time news about the fallen General and his mistress. Looking at the frantic media coverage the affair was getting, it seemed as though this was the next best thing to have happened for the press industry since the sad and tragic events surrounding Lady Diana's demise. According to the newsreader, the woman involved had told her friends that she regretted the damage done to her family and others by her affair.
"You know what?" said Victor to his wife as she handed him his glass of wine. "She says she regrets the hurt she has caused her family but she has nowhere mentioned that she's sorry for the affair. How can a woman ... or for that matter a man ... be so ambitious and totally focused upon climbing the corporate ladder? Did it never once cross her mind that she was being deceitful and breaking the trust bestowed upon her by her husband?"
"How can you be so sure that this affair was all about ambition and glamour?" replied Vanessa softly as she sipped her wine.
Victor was taken aback by the reply. He looked sharply at his wife who continued to stare at the TV screen.
"That lady out there is not a twenty something immature girl but a fully mature forty-year-old woman! You mean she deliberately and consciously made the decision to step out of her marriage? Are you saying that she developed feelings which should have been reserved for her husband and ventured headlong into a steamy affair ignoring even her children and the repercussions it could have on their future upbringing?" asked Victor incredulously.
By now the news channel was showing some old clippings where the woman could be seen doing push-ups along with the person interviewing her. It had been taken around the time the mistress had released a book about her lover, written by her. It was the General's biography. Of course, at that time the world didn't know that the General and the writer were also sleeping together when not discussing the book.
"Victor, women and men don't think alike. Try and understand what I'm trying to say. If one were to ask women their most cherished moment, most of them will tell you about a picnic outing incident or coffee at a bistro one rainy afternoon, but the guy involved would most probably recount the various positions they had sex in AFTER returning home from the bistro."
For some moments neither spoke as Victor tried to understand the point his wife was trying to make. Then Vanessa continued, "During the time the lady was drafting the biography, the two of them were thrown together for many months, if not years, and most probably gradually developed a mutual bond of sorts, a coming together of two minds."
"And bodies too," replied Victor testily. It seemed as though his wife was condoning the actions of the erring couple. Vanessa pressed her lips together on hearing her husband's outburst and continued to gaze steadily at the TV screen.
"That guy is old enough to play grandfather to her young kids. At least he should have shown the maturity ... which our leaders thought he had before assigning him those important foreign postings ... for ensuring that the mutual infatuation did not cross any unreasonable limits," continued Victor in a tone he normally reserved for lecturing his juniors.
"Ah! If only one's heart could think and behave rationally like one's mind. It was an affair of the heart, fully consummated by the two," she whispered.
Victor was flabbergasted. He could not believe what he had just heard his wife say. The way she was going on was as if this was another episode of one of her tear-jerker soap operas.
"For the sake of her family and young children, if nothing else, I hope her husband thinks of her betrayal in the same way as you do," he replied testily.
There it was once again. He was sure he felt her muscles tense up on hearing him say that; she was sitting a bit straighter too. Perhaps he should not have sounded as harsh as he did, thought Victor. It seemed they had unconsciously taken sides here. He had sided with the betrayed guy while his wife had sided with the adulterous woman. Victor picked up the remote and changed channels.
The next few days Victor really didn't get time to follow up on the affair of the fallen General and his married mistress. He and Vanessa were expecting their children and grandchildren over for Thanksgiving and Vanessa had given him a long list of things to do. There were items to be purchased for the little ones who were, it seems, in constant touch with their grandmother thru their parents' mobile numbers. Then there was the precious chinaware to be safely put aside in the attic. The idea was to give their grandchildren enough open space to run around freely without crashing into something expensive. Victor got so involved in his chores that he decided to forgo his golfing session. Little did he know that his decision would change his life forever. He spent the whole day wrapping up the expensive dinner set items in soft cloths and old newspapers and then putting them in cardboard boxes which were then hauled up to the attic. That done, he began moving some of the other fragile living room items to the garage.
He didn't hear the doorbell ring the first time as he had been busy putting things in place in the garage. By the time he re-entered the main house, the guy from the courier service was more or less keeping his finger continuously pressed to the bell. Victor glanced around quickly before making way to the front door. He still had a lot of things to complete.
"You the Browns?" asked the courier boy nonchalantly, as he obviously shifted his chewing gum from one side of his mouth to another. "Parcel for you," he continued in the same breath as he held out a paper for Victor to sign.
"These kids of today just have no manners," grumbled Victor as he slammed the door shut. He put the box on the kitchen table at the same time as looking to see who the sender was. It bore his name, "V. Brown," and was from a legal firm in Dallas. The fact that it was sent by somebody from their old town raised his curiosity.
Perhaps, had he not been so preoccupied, he would have realised that the initials "V. Brown" could also stand for "Vanessa Brown." Perhaps he would have then let Vanessa open up the parcel after she had returned from work. But things didn't happen that way; Victor picked up a kitchen knife and slit open the packing tape.
The sound of Vanessa's car turning into their driveway in the evening broke the eerie silence prevailing in the Brown's residence for the past several hours. It was followed by the sound of her car door opening and then closing. A few moments later Vanessa walked into the house thru the garage door.
"Hi, honey, I'm home," she called out as she busied herself with the task of putting down some shopping bags she had been carrying along with the bag carrying her laptop. "My, my, somebody has been really busy today," she continued in a light tone as she surveyed the disarrayed scene in the living room.
"Honey, c'mon down and join me in the kitchen. I'm gonna brew up some real hot coffee for both of us," said Vanessa as she made her way to the kitchen. The fact that her husband hadn't responded till now didn't seem to have aroused her curiosity.
"Hey, what do we have here?" he heard his wife say. Victor looked down thru his red rimmed eyes at the photocopied paper he held in his now almost numb hands. Until just recently, they had been trembling uncontrollably. Victor gripped the piece of paper in his hands as though his very life depended on it. He had rearranged the parcel contents just as he had found them, with the letter addressed by his wife's lover at the very top. He knew that's what she must be looking at this very moment. Victor put on his reading glasses and began reading the letter once again, knowing full well that his wife must be doing the same also.
My Dearest Pretty Petals,
If you have this letter in your pretty hands and are reading it, then let me tell you, my dear, that my time in this world has come to a close and the Lord ordains that I be at his Heavenly Abode.
First things first, please, please, do not grieve for me. I'm an old man in my seventies; or rather, I'm a lonely old man in my seventies and have been so ever since Martha passed on so many years ago. Her going the Lord's way had literally taken away the zest for life in me. As you know, she had been my childhood sweetheart and we had married when we were just twenty and nineteen so she was there beside me in my good times and bad times for almost forty years as bad health and illness slowly ebbed away the life in her. She knew she was going and so did I but to the very end we clung to each other like two teenagers, cherishing every moment, every precious moment we still had to share 'til finally it was time for her to move on.
So, like I just said, please do not grieve for me. In fact, it's now time to be reunited with my girl. My children are well settled and even my grandchildren are now ready to fly out from their nest so, my Pretty Petals, say your goodbyes with a smile to this senile old man. If there's life after death then it's time to start up all again and check out where my Martha is.
And as for you, my Pretty Petals, if it had not been for your loving care and kindness during those dreadful days after my Martha left me alone and helpless like a piece of dead wood adrift in the ocean, tossed around here and there by waves and currents, I would have long ago passed away. Don't argue. I know that is the truth and so do you. You took me in your loving care, comforting me like a mother would comfort a grieving child. The warmth of your love and our intimacy worked like a magic potion.