I glanced up at the moon that was close to being full and for a while I was almost spellbound by it. In the city light pollution obscures much of the night sky glory, but here the stars glittered brightly and the moon was an intense golden yellow.
I remembered reading how in the distant past people had worshipped the moon as a heavenly deity, and always it seemed the moon had been "She," the female as opposed to the male deity, the Sun. It occurred to me that whereas the sun's brightness unmercifully exposes both beauty and ugliness, the moon like a gracious goddess gently hid in deep shadows our defects.
I broke away from my reverie as I recalled how once Hannah had been my goddess, my Juno; perhaps she still was.
I sighed and decided to brave the bed. Unlike modern beds that you drop down on, this monster had to be climbed up to. Once on the thing there were a number of choices to be made. Would I sleep in the middle, the left or the right? It was firm yet surprisingly comfortable and seemed to have no pre-made indents into which one might fall. I opted for the middle.
I switched off the bedside light and lay back. It was a warm night and I was naked, the bed covers pushed back. My mind still ran on the goddess Juno, and from out of the recesses of my mind I remembered the caption that went with the picture in the encyclopaedia. It said something about Juno being the goddess of marriage and child birth.
"Hannah's marriage came to an end and she has no children," I thought, did that disqualify her as a Juno figure? Perhaps, yet it had also said that Juno was a woman of stately beauty. Well Hannah was certainly that even in her overalls – maybe more in her overalls than in anything else.
My erection was still giving me problems and this was not really surprising since I hadn't been with a woman for a long time, so action was called for. I began to slowly stroke my foreskin over the crown of my penis and as I did I began to think of those who might have begun the process of procreation on this very bed. Women, legs parted as men poured their life giving seed into them.
This thought caused me to speed up my movements until with a final groan my own seed shot out of my urethra to cascade down over my hand and onto my belly. When the last eruption ended I lay back for a moment breathing deeply as I relaxed.
I felt as if I might drop off to sleep, and cursed myself for not bringing something to bed with me to clear up the mess. I clambered out of the monster and rummaged in the chest of drawers to find a handkerchief to wipe myself with. The sperm had started to run down my legs and was growing cool and sticky. I managed to clean up and told myself I must remember to rinse the handkerchief out in the morning so that there was no chance Hannah would see it if I put it in the washing machine.
I put the handkerchief under one of the three pillows that the bed had, curled up and went to sleep.
Even in sleep Juno did not leave me. Some time during the night she came to me in a dream, or was it a nightmare? She came, tall, incredibly beautiful and oddly with a golden moon shining behind her. I seemed to be lying on a couch, and Juno stood over me and said, "Come Jason, hero of the Golden Fleece, make me with child. "
The long white robe she was wearing dropped from her to reveal a body of incredible beauty. I was naked and my penis reared up like a great tower. She came astride me and spoke again; "The seed of your loins shall give me many offspring. " With that she began to lower herself on to me. I looked up at her face, and it was the face of Hannah smiling down at me.
I was jolted out of sleep and for a moment didn't know where I was. Then I felt stickiness under me; I had ejaculated again. I groped for the already sperm laden handkerchief and finding it I searched for the switch of the bedside light. When I could see I tried to clean up the mess I had made on the sheet and although I managed to get rid of some of it, what had soaked into the sheet was unmoveable.
To avoid the wet spot I opted for the left side of the bed and managed to go back to sleep to be awakened again by a distant rumbling sound that drew ever closer. I tried to work out what it could be and then a long mournful hooting sound told me; it was a train.
It passed by on the other side of the road that fronted the shop with a seemingly endless clatter and clanging. It had not occurred to me that freight was still moved by rail, but as I was to learn, trains of enormous length carried goods in containers, and also the products of mines many kilometres up the line, passing on the other side of the road day and night.
Eventually the noise stopped, and I once more managed to go off to sleep.
Chapter 6. Frustration and a Walk.
When I woke in the morning I clambered down the mountainside, remembering to retrieve the handkerchief, and putting on my dressing gown headed for the bathroom. During the course of washing my hands and face in the basin I washed out the handkerchief – it's no easy job removing sperm from handkerchiefs. The day was already warm, so I put on a pair of shorts and a shirt and headed for what I hoped would be breakfast.
Hannah was sitting at the table drinking a cup of coffee and reading a newspaper, but putting aside the paper she rose and came to me. She was wearing something resembling a kimono, loose and flowing. That she was naked underneath was obvious, and as she came to me her breasts moved in that alluring way noticeable with women who have full firm breasts.
She pressed close to me and kissed me, then said, "Good morning darling, did you sleep well. " Her body held close to me had that warm, soft and relaxed feeling that morning seems to bring to some women. I don't think she had showered and her femaleness came to my nostrils more potently and beguilingly than ever.
For all that I had ejaculated twice during the night another erection was in the making. "God, she's woman... all woman," I thought, and not for the first time I wondered how Ted could have left all this.
In answer to her question I did not mention the wet dream that had woken me up, but did say I had heard the train.
"Yes," she said, "you'll probably hear quite a few, but you get used to it and after a while don't even hear them. "
Hannah cooked some bacon and eggs and as we ate she asked me what I was going to do that day.
"I thought I'd take a look around the town," I replied.
She smiled and said, "It won't take you long. I'll be interested to hear what you think of it. "
She finished eating and together we cleared up and she went off for her shower. I went out of the shop and stood for a moment looking right and left. I opted for the right and began my walk along the main street.
A lot of the shops were vacant and all had a run down look as if nobody cared any more. I passed the hotel where we had eaten... or tried to eat in the previous evening. At the end of the street the paddocks began, so I went up a side street and then threaded my way back and forth through the streets that were the residential areas. The houses, like the shops, with a few exceptions, looked neglected.
Coming in this way to the other end of the town I returned to the main street again and made my way back to the shop, this time passing the Town Hall and a couple of churches. I noted that there were some houses on the other side of the railway line, so I crossed over the road, then over the line, and took a look.
The houses had a standard look about them and I conjectured that they had once been housing for the railway workers when the railway had been in it glory days.
I crossed back to the main street and entered the shop. It had taken me a couple of hours to traverse the town.
Two customers were browsing and Hannah seemed to be trying to bring some order to a shelf with saucepans on it. She looked up and smiled asking, "Would you make a cup of tea, Jason, I haven't had a minute to myself?"
She was back in her overalls and shirt and standing on some steps to reach the shelf. I wished she'd come down and hug me again she looked so... so... delicious.
I set about making the tea and Hannah joined me in the office. People came and went, some buying some not. The place was never crowded, but there seemed to be a constant flow of customers, some of them asking for the most outlandish things.
To my amazement one guy asked, "Have you got a copy of John Wesley's sermons?" I was even more amazed when Hannah said, "Yes, I think so," and led him over to where second hand books were located; and yes, there was a copy.
It was clear that Hannah did not want to ask me what I thought about the town in the shop, in case I made negative comments and was overheard by a customer. After finishing our tea Hannah went back to her tidying and I helped her.
During the course of the day I noticed that a number of men entered, saying things like, "I was passing so I thought I'd drop in. " I could see very clearly that their objective was the same as George's, although none of them were as crude and aggressive.
Hannah treated them in a polite, friendly manner, introducing me to several of them. She continued to refer to me as her "nephew," and I thought I could see the look of relief on some of their faces. I wasn't a rival for Hannah's hand – or bed.
Although I felt little stabs of jealousy if Hannah seemed a bit over friendly, I couldn't blame these men. Most of them seemed to be in their late thirties or early forties and I was sure that some, if not all of them, must have been married, but I understood their desire to see Hannah, even if it was only to look and languish. After all, I was doing my own share of looking and languishing.
Hannah heated up a couple of pies for lunch and as we sat eating I said, "I saw a computer in the shed, does it work?"
She gave a little chuckle and said, "I don't know. Some poor old chap brought it in and said that his son-in-law had given it to him and he couldn't get it to work. He actually wanted to give it to me for nothing, but I gave him a few dollars just to get it off his hands. I don't know anything about them, do you?"
It was my turn to laugh; "Hannah I've just spent four years, much of them learning about computers. "
"Ah, yes, of course. "
"Do you want me to look at it? It might be perfectly all right. "
"Yes... yes... do you think I could sell it?"
"Why sell it? You might be able to use it here. "
"Well, you could use it to help organise and keep track of your stock. "
"It can't do that, can it?"
"It can do exactly that. I'll take a look at it. "
That afternoon in the shed I assembled the computer. It was an older model but when I switched on it was perfectly all right. The programmes, like the computer itself, were not the latest, but they would be quite adequate for the purpose I had suggested.
When I told Hannah she looked doubtful. She had used a computer while working as a doctor's receptionist, but it had been a limited programme devised for a specific purpose.
"I don't think I would be able to use it," she said.
"Hannah, I'll make a start on it and teach you what to do. In fact I'll start tomorrow. "
"Darling, you're on holiday and your mother said... "
"Never mind what mother said, and anyway, there's not much to do around here, is there?"
"There's a lot to do, but not in the way you mean. "
Chapter 7. Telling the Goddess.
I let that pass and as it was getting near closing time I asked, "Where do we eat tonight, the hotel again?"
"If you don't mind; it's so difficult... I feel terrible asking you here and not being able to look after you properly. "
"I don't need looking after, Hannah I can look after myself. "
It suddenly hit me that in a couple of days I had gone from being miserable drooping wretch, to feeling good about myself, even if I did get frustratingly horny over Hannah.
I decided to pay an appropriate compliment and said, "Being with you Hannah has done me a lot of good. "
"Has it really? What a lovely thing to say. "
She gave me one of her all enfolding hugs and warm moist kisses. I started to get another erection. An elderly gentleman looking at some photograph albums stared at us, intrigued.
George wasn't at the hotel that evening so we ate our meal in peace. As we left I bought a bottle of wine and for a while we wandered along the main street. Hannah pointed out things that had not been obvious to me during my morning, and then asked, "Have you looked over the old railway yards?"
"No," I replied, "why?"
"Very interesting," was her only reply.
We wandered back to the shop and went upstairs. I opened our bottle of wine and poured. Relaxing in the armchairs and under the influence of the wine we began to talk. Hannah began to speak about her meeting with Ted and working as his receptionist. I responded by telling her about some of my girl friends, but avoided any reference to Freda.
"You really did get on well with the girls didn't you?"
"Yes, and I can remember who encouraged me," I laughed.
"You did. "
"Yes, you; my mother would have had a fit if she knew some of the things I confided in you about girls. "
Hannah laughed and said, "Yes, I suppose she would, but it was good to be able to talk to someone, wasn't it?"
"Yes, especially when that someone gave me my first condoms. "
"Well, we had to keep you out of trouble, didn't we?"
"Seriously, Hannah, I'm very grateful to you. "
"Good. Do you remember the first time you felt... I mean... when you really knew about men and women... I'm not putting it very well... when you felt... "
"When I first stopped thinking of women as mothers and aunts and suppliers of food and drink?"
We both laughed. "Yes, I suppose I do mean something like that. When was it, do you remember? I can't remember my first time... I mean, I can remember the first time I had sex, but I can't remember the first time I felt something about a boy. "
"I can... about a girl I mean. "
"Really? Oh please tell me Jason. "
"You might not like it. "
I think the alcohol was getting to us and Hannah went on. "Please tell me, it must be fascinating. "
"You're sure you want to know?"
"Why shouldn't I?"
"All right; one afternoon I came into your back garden. You were lying on a sun lounge in a two-piece. I hadn't seen you like that before and I... well... I... "
"Oh Jason, you didn't!"
"You offered me a drink and some cake, but I was thinking about other things. "
Hannah laughed, "Jason, you're making it up. "
"You really mean you wanted to... to... do something with me? How old were you?"
"I think about thirteen. "
"I don't know that I wanted to do things with you, but it was the first time I really noticed you as a woman, if you know what I mean. "
"I think so. "
"When you stood up I thought you looked like a goddess... I thought about you like that for a long time. "
"Well, you know how it is when you're young and you see... "
"Which goddess? I bet it was a horrible one. "
"Juno, I saw a picture of her and you reminded me of her. "
"That's so sweet, Jason and I had no... wait a minute, I think I can remember now. You stood there staring at me. "
"Oh, my darling Jason," she laughed, "and to think I didn't know. "
"Well, you know now. "
Chapter 8. The Silence.
An awkward silence fell between us. I was beginning to regret that I said anything – had revealed so much of myself. Hannah wasn't looking at me any longer and the smile had gone out of her eyes. She glanced up at the clock and said, "Time for bed I think, goodnight. "
No hugging or kissing, she hurried from the room and entered her bedroom.
Telling myself I'd been a bloody fool and I'd probably spoilt my relationship with Hannah for ever I went to bed. There was no masturbating that night and for a long time I tossed and turned, writhing within at the thought of what an idiot I'd been.
A train rumbled by and soon after I dropped into merciful oblivion.
In the morning Hannah was already up and dressed in her overalls and shirt. She gave me breakfast but didn't join me. Heading for the stairs down to the shop she said, "I'd better get started. "
Miserable and embarrassed I finished eating, cleaned up my plates and headed for the computer. I would have liked to have stayed out in the shed, away from Hannah, but the work I had to do was better done in the office. I moved the computer to the office and began the task.
Apart from setting the whole thing up I found that that trying to discover what stock actually existed was a major task in itself. I went back and forth trying to find what there was and how much. I wanted Hannah to put a monetary value on objects but was too afraid to break the silence between us. I decided to deal with the money aspect later, if ever.
As I realised just what a task I'd undertaken I began to regret I'd ever offered, but decided I had to slog on regardless.
Hannah spent her time dealing with customers or the endless task of trying to get some order into the place. She didn't stop for a break and some of the people coming in wanted to sell her things, and that added to the stock and its chaos. I knew that out in the shed there was work to be done. People telephoned in to offer goods, and these needed to be collected by Hannah with her van, but there seemed to be no time.
At lunch time I decided that enough was enough. If we weren't going to talk I might just as well pack my bags, catch the daily bus or hitch a ride back to the city, there being no passenger train due through for several days.
At twelve thirty I arbitrarily turned the notice round to indicate the shop was closed. Before Hannah could protest I said, "We've got to talk, Hannah. We can't go on with this silly silence. I'm sorry I said what I did last night, but really it was all a long time ago and you did ask me to tell you. "
"Yes, I know, Jason, and I feel rather ashamed that I did. I suppose it was the wine and... well I don't know... female curiosity. "
"I think I should leave, Hannah. "
For a moment she looked at me thunderstruck, then burst out, "No don't go, Jason, don't go yet. There's no reason for you to go if only we start talking again. "
"Aren't you shocked at what I told you?"
"Darling, of course not; it was a young boy's awakening I suppose, it just happened that I was the one who... who was there," she ended lamely.
I could have told her that the awakening had started all over again, but had enough wit to keep quiet. "Anyway," I thought, "at least we're talking again. "
"Then if it's okay with you I'll stay, but I've got myself into something trying to set up your stock on the computer, there's so much of it and it's so messy, it'll take days... even weeks. "
Hannah laughed and said, "I do try, but I've almost given up myself, so why don't you?"
"No, I'll do what I can, but I'll have to teach you to use the computer before I leave. "
"All right, but I don't know when. There are things I should be doing out in the shed, and I usually reserve the evenings for that. "
"And you've already lost two evening entertaining me. "
"Oh, darling, I haven't lost them; it's been wonderful to have you here. "
"Even after last night?"
"Yes, even after last night. "
With that I was sent out to buy some fish and chips for lunch which we ate while we discussed ways and means of getting the place straight.
Chapter 9. Wine and Women.
That afternoon the shop stayed shut because Hannah had to go out with the van to collect various items. She suggested I went with her, but I said I'd continue trying to set up things on the computer. She was away for about two hours. I saw people come to the shop door and look at the notice and then walk off, some of them huffily. I was becoming more and more aware of what Hannah had taken on and how difficult it all was.