tagNovels and NovellasSt. Dunstan's Nuns Ch. 07

St. Dunstan's Nuns Ch. 07

byNigel Debonnaire©

I awakened before dawn after a deep sleep, feeling refreshed for the first time in weeks. A quality sleep if not a large quantity rest. The sheets were damp, and I threw them into the laundry pile immediately. It was earlier than my usual wake up time, so went over to my window to sit and listen to the sounds of predawn. A rare passing car, a hint of breeze, the twinkle of a few stars that peeked through the Roman city lights, a distant rumble of a plane approaching DaVinci. I wished my mother was on the plane coming in: she was the rock of my life since I became a nun, and I missed her now more than ever.

I was going to see her soon; I'd booked a flight to Greece before I went to sleep a few hours before, but it didn't leave until the next day. There were things to be done. I compiled my overnight bag while I had the energy, and fished out my passport. Took a look at my diary, and found I didn't have any solid commitments for the day. Maybe I should try to see Cardinal Enrico Terranova in the early afternoon while everyone was sleeping. He was really in pitiful shape, and maybe I could give him something special. I found myself tingling at the thought: the last time I had whipped his back to mortify his flesh after he peeked on Juli and I sunbathing naked on the roof, then gave him a rough handjob. It would only be once, and the possibilities might be endless.

A rustling outside my window caught my attention. Rocco Salvatore was taking his leave in the dim light, and Sister Julianna was walking him to the gate. The light in Sister Lucia's room was out; Juli must be sneaking a little private time after their three way romp last night. They were close, like two infatuated teenagers walking down the sidewalk in the same shoes. Juli only wore a light white robe; Rocco wore a white t-shirt with an open neck, a gold chain, and dark trousers. His hands were playing in her open robe, teasing her breasts and crotch. She clung to him, smiling, and stroking his trousers. It seemed he wasn't worn out completely from the night before, because he spun her around in the gap between the bushes and my building, lifted up the back of her garment, opened his fly and began thrusting toward her crack. I could tell she reached between her legs to guide him in, and they were humping in the gathering light.

My fingers wandered between my legs: it was hot to watch them making such passionate love. A voice in the back of my head was screaming: "Juli, you're an idiot! An Idiot! Don't you know you can get pregnant this way?" She took him eagerly, rolling her hips, and after a lot of frantic copulating, he pulled out to shoot a load on her bare butt. They kissed again, and realized it was too light outside; he ran off, awkwardly trying to replace his penis while she darted back into the dormitory. It wasn't quite my usual shower time, and I resisted the urge to go early to see if I could catch Sister Juli washing sperm off her ass.

Looking back across the way, I saw Mavis and the Elephant standing at their window watching the kids with huge smiles on their faces. Mavis' hand was behind her and his hand was buried in the top of her nightgown. "Some people never grow up," I muttered to myself, and hummed the melody of "Hello, Young Lovers," as I gathered myself for the day.

Morning Prayer and breakfast went as usual, and I had to figure out how to get away to look for LaRossa. The little drama revolving around Sister Lucia was one I wanted to stay out of, and didn't want her to know any more than she had to about Cardinal Terranova's tip. She was in her office when I knocked and let me in without delay: "Good morning, Sister Mary Francis Xavier. Did you sleep well?"

"As well as anyone could in this heat. I need to ask for an emergency leave."

"Oh? Where?"

"My mother's not well."

She thought a long moment. "Patty's been in bad health for a while. What is going on with her?"

"She's been in Greece to recover from her latest episode, but she's had a setback and can't make decisions for herself."

"An accident? A coma? Did she run off with a young man?"

"No, no and definitely not. She's had bouts with depression; won't respond to much of any stimulus. It's tough to snap her out of it, but I've had some luck with her at times like this, so they asked me to come."

She steepled her hands in front of her face, swinging back and forth in her office chair. A slight sag in her eyelids and a dullness in her eye told me of her romp last night, otherwise she was fresh and tidy as usual. "I guess there's no harm in letting you go. Are you caught up around here?"

"Yes, Sister. Hopefully it won't be gone long. I need to work on some books at the Cardinal's during siesta time this afternoon, but that will finish up my project with him. If I can get a ticket tomorrow, I'll be on my way."

"Of course, Sister. Permission granted."

I started to leave, then turned around: "Excuse me, sister, have you heard anything about LaRossa's whereabouts?"

"No, nothing yet. Have you heard anything?"

"She hasn't called me." I grasped my hands behind my back hard even though I wasn't really lying to the woman. She thought my Aunt Patty was my mother, and Patty had an episode like I'd described. . . two years ago while Sister Lucia was on a trip. "It's tough to know what to think."

Sister Lucia nodded sympathetically. "Make your reservation and pack your bag right now. I'll send Sister Julianna out after the produce while you're gone. Just focus on your dear mother and don't worry about anything here. Keep me posted."

"Yes, Sister. Will do."

I turned and left quickly. Getting back to my rooms, I looked up material on my destination: the island of Kos. I'd never been to the Greek Islands before, and hoped I would have a chance to explore the island after I found LaRossa. It was the birthplace of Hippocrates, the father of medicine. I felt I needed some medicine, but it was too early to start drinking.

I took public transportation to the Cardinal's residence this day; the bus wasn't too crowded. The day was another Italian roaster, and getting out of town sounded like a great idea. At least the Cardinal's rooms were cool, although I might be asked to make myself comfortable.

Father Mario wasn't at his desk and I entered the Cardinal's office silently without knocking. He was dozing on a leather couch, wearing a silk bathrobe, his mouth open as he snored as softly and gently as a breeze sighing through a rafter. I looked at him, small and powerless and fragile, and something lurched inside me. The office had the same richness and opulence as my grandmother's mansion in England, but just as I'd always seen more with her than an ordinary spoiled rich person, I saw more in this man who was surrounded by a power and affluence that didn't matter any more.

A soft touch on his shoulder made him stir, and a squeeze awakened him. His eyelids flutter open and a small smile creased his face. "Helen, dearest Helen. So good of you to come. Have you decided about my offer?"

"Yes, Enrico. I've made up my mind."

He smiled broadly. "Take a look in my desk drawer. There's a scrap of paper with a date on it. Read it and see if I'm right." I went to his unlocked desk and in the front right corner was a small piece of paper folded into a neat square. He was absolutely right with his guess, and the date on the paper was today's date. This was scary and I shuddered. "I knew I would be right. You're welcome, Helen. Now. . ."

"Yes, I will show you my appreciation. The last time we met, I chastised you, but this time will be different." Without a word, I took off my wimple and habit, laying them carefully on the desk before removing my bra and panties.

His eyes grew huge, and he trembled as I moved close to him, taking his hand. "You are a heavenly vision; I would say an angel has come to visit me. A Renaissance Angel, with red hair and freckles. My cousin was like you; when I was a child I watched her bathing, and she has danced in my dreams for a lifetime. May I. . .?"

His eyes were flickering between mine and my left nipple, so I put my finger on his lips and came close enough for him to touch my breasts. His touch was feeble as he milked my nipples, squeezed my teardrop melons, stroked my side. I moved closer and he took my nipple in his mouth: there was nothing but gums and tongue as he made love to my breast, and a tingling ran up and down my spine as he did so. Moving his robe open, I saw his cock once again, the same member I'd teased and abused when I saw it last. He was partially erect, and I gave him a few gentle slaps without force to get him more interested. Finishing with one side, I moved for him to take the other breast into his mouth, sucking it deep in his toothless embrace. Moving my hand up and down his cock, I teased the ridges, smeared leaking liquid around it, juggled his little balls. He moaned and I stroked him faster.

It was nice for a while, but he started to get a little too warm and it was time to finish him off. Moving away and kneeling, I did something I'd only done once for the Elephant to pay off a debt: I took the end of his cock in my mouth and started sucking. He gasped in surprise, and his whole body shook with delight. I took it easy at first, but started licking faster and harder, stroking him with a circular motion I saw Sister Juli using on Rocco, and before long I reached the point of no return. "Hell," I said to myself, "it's only this one time," and I opened my throat to receive his seed that jetted out stronger than I expected.

He touched my cheek when I'd finished, smiling and not saying a word, cupping my cheek. "Helen, Helen, Helen," he whispered. "You don't know. . ."

I touched his lips to silence him: ". . .and you probably never will. Savor this mystery as well as the others as you prepare for the last journey." He nodded and went back to sleep, as I dressed myself and left.

Shooting off some e-mails and making a couple of calls, I got a lay of the land I was going to. The program I was joining was just getting organized, and I didn't need to be there for months. There would be time for me to make my arrangements here, to see things heading the right direction, and to prepare for the move. It helped me figure out what I was going to say to LaRossa when I saw her.

The evening meal was quiet and after Evening Prayer, I snuck out again to watch the action. Mavis and the Elephant took a rare night off, and there was no action from the nun's dormitory, either, so I can in my tree and let my mind drift without purpose. There were breezes that made my skin tingle, and time lost all reference until it was cool enough to sleep.

Getting up early the next morning, I dressed simply in civilian clothes for my trip. I wore a tank top, jean shorts, a blue handkerchief on my head, and sneakers to travel on the plane. A backpack held my change of clothes and whatever else I needed; being a nun meant one could travel light. While waiting for my flight, several people asked me where I went to University, and I told them I was past that. The flights were uneventful, and I was able to nap in the blessed coolness of the planes.

Kos was more beautiful than I could've imagined. The island reminded me of a sleek green dolphin as we approached, and I was struck by the lovely scenery and inviting beaches as we came in to land. The airport wasn't very large, and I found ground transport without much problem. My information had the name of a church and its pastor, who was my chance to find LaRossa. Seeing the loveliness here, talking her back into Rome was going to be tough.

I rapped on an ancient door to the Rectory and a huge man in an Eastern priest's cassock answered it. He was hairy with a long beard: a man larger than most men, yet with gentle hands and kind blue eyes. His hair was mostly dark, tinged with grey around the edges, and he was surprised to see me. "My heavens, you could be sisters!" he exclaimed when he first saw me.

"Father," I responded, "I'm looking for someone very dear to me, and I heard you could help me."

"Yes? Who would that be?"

"Barbara Parkhurst-Frazelton."

He rolled his eyes and pretended to think for a moment. It was clear he knew something; he was not practiced at deception. He tapped a hairy, sandaled foot and he sucked his upper lip under his lower lip. "I may have heard that name," he said at last. "Why do you think I would know where she is?"

"Father, I beg your pardon, I don't know your name."

"Father Michael Demetrios, pastor of St. George's Church here on Kos. And you are?"

"Helen Parkhurst-Frazelton."

This took him more aback and made him nervous. I'd thrown him for a loop. "It's no use trying to deceive you, since she hasn't told me enough to prepare for this. Barbara said someone from her community would come someday looking for her, but she didn't say anything about a. . . relative. What is your relationship with her?"

His eyes were the saintliest eyes I'd ever gazed into in my life. For all my life, I'd been keeping a great secret, and never had revealed it to a total stranger before, but this kindly looking man in an isolated spot invited my confidence. "Barbara is my mother."

He shook his head and looked away for a moment. Looking back, I could tell he was in a quandary. "A puzzlement: I didn't think Barbara had a daughter."

"Ask her. Tell her I'm here and would like to talk with her."

He thought for a long moment, making an important decision. Finally, he said: "As you wish, Helena," He turned, leaving the door open and went to the back of the house. I swung my backpack to the floor and waited. The house was a simply place, with icons on the wall and a huge bookshelf dominated it. Its wooden furnishing looked well worn; they probably stayed with the house over the different terms of the pastors. Shortly, Father Michael returned: "She will meet you on the back porch. If you'll come through, you'll see it on your right."

He ushered me in and it was a few steps before I was on an elevated deck with a lovely view of the sea. LaRossa sat on a deck chair under a striped umbrella wearing a straw hat and a white, one piece bathing suit, her feet in sandals. "You found me, Squirt. Didn't think you'd be here this soon. I expected Lucia or one of the others to come by first, and then you would come out to make the last pitch."

"Things are crazy back in Rome."

"What else is new?" she said tartly. Her face relaxed: "It's this a perfect place?" She spread her arm to show me the view: mountains, ancient building, orchards, blue skies, and a perfectly sapphire sea. "Much better than Kansas."

"Sure, Mother. I'd pick this place over Kansas, and I've never seen Kansas."

"Have a seat, Squirt. Can I get you something?"

"No thanks." I took a chaise next to her and sat admiring the scenery.

"Michael will whip us up a wonderful lunch; he's a fantastic cook. God sent him to me in Jerusalem, I'm sure of that. All you have to do is look in his eyes. I never thought there would be love at first sight, but I was wrong. He's a saint: so attentive and spiritual and wise. And an animal in the bedroom!" She touched my arm as I winced. "Sorry, Squirt, I know you didn't want to hear about that. For some strange reason, he adores me, too, and I just had to get off the plane in Athens. In six months, my term will be over anyway, so it's no big loss. I haven't sent in my resignation yet, the days have just drifted by and I haven't had any energy for that. But I know where to spend the rest of my days, Squirt. Here. You can came here too, if you want."

Father Michael came out with a cold glass of lemonade. "I'm sure after you're journey you'll need refreshment, Helen. I found some wonderful fresh calamari at the market this morning, so I hope you'll be with us for lunch."

"Thank you, Father."

He put his hand gently on my shoulder and shook his head. "No, no, no, Helen. As Barbara's daughter and a guest in my house, you may call me Michael. If there is anything I can do for you, you need only ask."

"Thanks, Michael."

He retreated inside, and LaRossa smiled after him. "A wonderful, cuddly bear of a man, isn't he? His people love him."

"How come he's here alone? Aren't Eastern Rite priests permitted to marry?

"He lost his wife to cancer five years ago. A long illness. They aren't permitted to remarry if their wives die. Poor man's been alone ever since; hasn't looked at another woman." The breeze came across the deck, and we savored it. "You'll want to tell me it's my duty to come back, isn't it? Lucia sent you."

"No. Lucia's worrying me: she's had several episodes where simple facts escape her and she forgets things too quickly. I know her well enough to know something's wrong. An occasional visitor wouldn't notice, but those who're around her every day would."

"Oh, that's a problem. Is she causing trouble?"

"Not yet, but she's doing things she didn't do before. A couple of nights ago she was having sex with Rocco and Juli in her apartment."

She sat up straight, surprised. "What? How?" Her eyes narrowed. "How do you know this, Squirt?"

I cleared my throat and took a sip of my lemonade, which took my breath away, it was so good. "I was sitting outside in a tree, watching."

"Watching? Turning into a voyeur, Squirt?"

"Yes, no, maybe. . .it's so beastly hot in Rome this time of year and there's no sleeping. Juli's been away with her family in the mountains for weeks, and there's nothing to do. I've been in the tree the past almost every night for about a month or so."

"Watching Mavis and the Elephant," she said with a sardonic smile.

I shook my head. "Yes. Out of boredom."

She narrowed her eyes again. "I think a little more than that, but we'll leave it alone. Yes, Lucia is out of bounds: sex in the dormitories is out of bounds, even if it's her and she knows that. The only times we bent that rule were for the Elephant and for Cardinal Terranova. By the way, how's he doing?"

"Not good. Retiring, terminal brain cancer."

She sighed. "I will pray for him, since God wants to pray for our enemies. Don't get excited, I know you've only been doing his books for him, in spite of what the gossips around the Generalate say." She sighed again, and looked out at the sea. "Oh Squirt, you don't know what you're asking me. Do I always have to be the one who sets things right?" I sat without saying anything; she would be more convinced if she worked it out on her own as much as possible. "Sister Laura Anastasia could come back from America, right?"

"Yes. She could be here in days. Of course, she's Second Councillor and not very assertive. If she came in when things are calm, it would be perfect, but she gets overwhelmed in new situations when she hasn't got her feet on the ground. Could she talk Sister Lucia into getting a check up right after getting off the plane?"

It took a while for the question to sink in; I knew LaRossa hated the thoughts going through her head. After a long silence, she spoke again: "You're growing up, Squirt. I've never known you to be so patient. I thought you'd be pleading with me and using every argument you could to badger me." I shrugged my shoulders and spread my palms. She touched my cheek: "I'm glad you're mine, Squirt. I'm proud of you. Haven't said it enough, I know, but I can now. Maybe I should let you take charge."

I shook my head, and answered in a low voice: "You know that's not possible."

She shook her head. "No, I guess it isn't." Taking a glass of water, she sipped from it slowly and thought some more. "I remember the plans I had, to go to Kansas after this term and be near Vicar Alfred. Yes, I was disappointed he married Agnes, but I never let him know I'd consider that with him. Marriage. Then Agnes got hit by the bus, and maybe I could arrange it to be close to him and we could go back to the way things were in England. Without the others cluttering things up. But he's changed so much, I wouldn't know him now. We've written a few times, and I can tell. He's got his own life to lead, and I have mine." She looked over her shoulder into the house seeking him, then looked back at the coast again. "Michael is everything Alfred isn't, and he needs me. The magic time in Jerusalem: we prayed together, we talked, we walked through the Old City. It's like I've found the other half of my soul."

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