When We Were Married Ch. 04DbyDanielQSteele1©
I was feeling restless and it took me a moment to realize why. I got up and went to one of the perks of my office and drew back the curtain that hid a plate glass window. It didn't face on the river so I was actually looking to the north. I could see the city skyline, what there was built to the north of the courthouse and State Attorney's Office.
Most of the skyline was to the south of me, but far to the north was Blount Island, with its berth for visiting and semi-permanent cruise ships. Until today. The Bonne Chance had finished its month's visit to Jacksonville today and in about four hours would be sailing to its next semi-permanent berth in the Port of Miami and from there to points south.
I had seen her in passing cars and walking on the sidewalk far below my office and standing on a corner as I drove by. I had seen her ass twitching away me and the curve of her hip thrust out as she waved to friends. I had seen her running with that long black hair flowing behind her. Of course, it was never her. And more than once – hell almost every day - I had to fight the urge to call the ship or drive over there when it was berthed.
What could it hurt? Philippe was an ocean away and he had his own life. She was never going to leave him so we could play. I could hold her in the night. It had been nearly a month and I'd had no other women in my bed.
I felt stupid. I had run into Sheila a couple of times and every time I went up to see the Big man, Myra was there giving me unreadable glances and threatening me with button shrapnel. Heather and I continued to work together as the killer granny case neared its climax and more and more I could understand the appeal of older women.
After Aline, I knew what I could have if I just could make myself reach out and take it. But I couldn't. I couldn't make myself take any other woman, and I had let her go. In a few hours she was going to be gone and I couldn't make myself imagine ever running into her again. I had my life and she had hers. If I had taken what she'd offered, we'd at least have had a month. Now there was no more time.
I closed the blinds and walked heavily back to my desk. I'd be 42 in less than two weeks, and today I felt like I was 84!
Friday, August 19– 4:15 p.m.
"I don't understand it, Dr. Teller. I was sad. Hell, I was about to start crying. I just wanted to talk to him. And out of nowhere, I was furious with him and he was attacking me. I understand how he feels. I really do. Intellectually. I know I made the first move that destroyed our marriage. But there I was blaming him again."
Teller leaned forward, mirroring her leaning forward over the low coffee table.
"You ended a 20-year relationship today, Mrs. Bascomb. Even if you were the one who wanted out, people have mixed emotions. He is the father of your children. At one time you loved him. We don't say when we get married, "I take this man, until I find someone better....Most people get married with the idea or hope of it being forever.
"It ended, and something died today. Even if it was only a dream you had when you were 21. People react differently to emotional stress. From what you've said, it's obvious he was highly upset as well.
" I'm still not sure where your anger is coming from, although it's clear that it has something to do with your Aunt Clarice's abandonment, divorce and suicide. It appears that while your marriage had entered a dangerous phase before that, with his drawing away from you due to the demands of his job, that the anger and some of the more – hostile – actions you took and your sexual unhappiness, truly began in earnest after your aunt's problems."
"I know it got worse, but..."
He leaned back and looked at her with, a speculative glance. She was surprise to see his gaze traveling from her face to her breasts, hips and back again. It felt odd to have him look at her that way. It felt...insulting...in a way it didn't with other men. Perhaps because in such a short time she had grown to trust him.
"What?" she said with a sharp undertone to her voice.
He glanced at her breasts again.
"Have you ever thought, Mrs. Bascomb, what an odd, ill-matched pair you and your ex-husband present – from a physical point of view?"
She looked over the swell of her breasts and then up to meet Teller's eyes.
"I know Bill wasn't any super stud from a physical standpoint. He was shorter than me – which was always a hard thing for him to take even when he told me it didn't matter. And he was never muscular. He wasn't a really – physical –guy. But he was smart and funny. He could always make me laugh. And I knew from the first time we ever went out that he was already in love with me."
"I would imagine you've always been surrounded by rich, handsome, physically imposing men? How could you be attracted to a man such as your ex-husband?"
She looked down at the Rorschach pattern and spoke without looking at him.
"Doctor, I started developing breasts when I was 11 years old. I was a 36 D cup when I was 13. Despite my parents' best efforts, I had sex with an 18-year-old boy when I was 12. By the time I was 15 I'd probably had sex with 20 guys, some of them grown men. One of them was one of my father's friends. He bought me an album by a group I really really wanted. My dad would have killed him if he'd guessed.
"Having sex was no big deal. Having men come after me was nothing special before I got into high school. By the time I went to UF I'd had pretty guys, guys with really, really big cocks, college quarterbacks, rich guys. I never even had to go after them. They came after me.
"I guess it's like owning your own restaurant. When you can have anything in the world you want to eat, you don't get super-excited about having some special meal. It's all food. What you care about is what YOU really like.
"I knew Bill would never match a lot of guys I'd had. But, I wanted him. He made me happy. And...after what he did....I knew it wasn't just sex. It wasn't just my body. I always knew that guys get tired of you eventually, no matter how hot you are. But I knew Bill never would."
"And yet, he never thought he was tall enough for you. He had to compare himself to the men you'd been with before him. Any man would. Did his doubts ever...make you wonder about the wisdom of your union?"
"Yeah, I guess sometimes. I could read it in his eyes sometimes when we went to parties or some hot guy hit on me. I liked guys flirting with me. I liked the feel of a big hard dick rubbing up against my thigh and knowing the guy who owned that dick would chop off a nut to put it inside me. I was never going to do anything about it, except fuck Bill's brains out after the party.
"But I could tell that he was hurt. And I've have to be extra special loving to him to make him feel better. And most of the time it was okay. But there were times...there were nights.. I wanted to kick his ass and tell him that I didn't want to be his mother and hold his hand.
" I wasn't in bed with those guys. I was in bed with him. He won me, not them. I wanted to tell him to be a man and grow some balls and treat me like I belonged to him, not like I was doing him a favor by being with him."
Watching her Teller knew there were other factors at play, but Maitland's lack of confidence had been a slow acting acid threatening his relationship with his wife. It wasn't fair, but who said life was fair?
Debbie rubbed her eyes. She felt like she was getting a migraine.
"Doctor, I've been coming here a lot over the last month. I know you've helped me, but there are times I wonder, what's the point? I don't....don't love my husband – ex-husband any more....and no matter how we got here, that's where we are. Even if I find out what caused our marriage to crash and burn...it's dead and gone. What's the point?"
"You can stop coming here anytime you wish, Mrs. Bascomb. Whenever you reach the point that you feel you can deal with the pain in your life, there is no reason for you to continue.
" But if you do, resurrecting your marriage is not the point of your visits. You have emotions, you have feelings that have been causing you pain. When you find out why and what caused those emotions, you can deal with them. You may accept them, accept the end of your marriage and move on. You might find that what you truly feel is not what you think you feel. It's possible to misunderstand what we are feeling, to misread our emotions.
"If you were happy with the end of your marriage, if you had accepted it and wanted to create a new life, you would do so. You're still a young woman. And you're stunningly beautiful and you could find another man.
"But at this point, even though you could, and you say you want to, you haven't. That tells me you're grappling with issues and emotions that you're unwilling to confront."
"Why the hell does life have to be so confusing, doctor? Why can't things ever be simple?"
He grinned and she realized again how much she'd grown to like him in a month's time.
"Because then I – and psychiatrists like me – would have to go out and get some real jobs...maybe become ER docs. I prefer working in the air conditioning away from blood and gore."
Friday, August 19– 9 p.m.
I walked in and looked around. As usual Pelicans wasn't completely mobbed this early, but it was still jumping. I'd changed to light colored blue slacks and an open-necked light blue Signature Twill shirt. Wearing black would have been just too depressing.
As usual when I entered, I stopped and looked around. I've never been a real party animal and unless I'm completely bombed, I tend to stand off a bit. It felt like going to a party in high school when I didn't know a soul. Not seeing Lew, I headed toward the bar and was ordering a Bloody Mary, very heavy on the tabasco with a half dozen green olives in the mix and I felt a tap on my shoulder and smelled a fragrance I should have known.
I turned around to look into Mona Walter's dark eyes. She was as tall as I or maybe a hair taller, hair just as black but utterly different from Aline's. A glance told me her svelte frame was poured into a classic little black dress and she had her high heels dangling from one finger.
As usual a little smile flickered on her lips, as if she was enjoying some private joke. Lew and I called it her Mona Lisa smile, and that's what it looked like. She was a good match for Lew, both of them smarter than hell, young, no kids, both lawyers. You couldn't get much better matched than that.
She leaned over and placed her lips on my cheek near my left ear and murmured, "My God, Lew told me you'd had a bad encounter with a stairwell, but....well, anyway, it makes you look dashing, if battered....Look, Lew was an asshole for dragging you out tonight, but his heart was in the right place. I was sorry to hear about you and Debbie. I would have called – both of you – but I had no idea what I should say."
I held my Bloody Mary in one hand and her right hand in mine as I replied, ""How about, better luck next time? Just kidding. I didn't know when you'd find the time. Every time I look around you're flying off to some country or doing some charity event. It's a wonder you and Lew ever find time to get together."
The smile flicked for a moment as she said, "I wonder about that sometimes too. But, I just wanted to tell you I'm here for you if you want to talk...or a shoulder to cry on."
I kissed her on the forehead, because despite the fact that I wasn't much older than them I sometimes felt like a favorite uncle.
"Thanks, Mona, but I'll be alright. Like they say, life goes on."
I very ostentatiously ogled her body. She wasn't built as big as Debbie, but what she had was very nice.
"Lew is a lucky man, and I keep telling him that."
She hugged me and said, "You're a dirty old man, but you have good taste. I know it's early, but I have some girlfriends and some women I know from various organizations. I can send out the word that a very hot – and by the way if getting divorced has that kind of effect on a guy, I'll have to ditch Lew - powerful guy is free to pursue....if you want me to."
I just shook my head and couldn't keep smiling.
"Thanks, Mona, but...it's too early. I just want to do my job and stay close to my kids and...maybe heal up a little.'
And then, before I could catch myself, I heard myself say, "Speaking of which....,"
Before I shut up.
I had known that kids were a sore point for both of them, but as something passed across her face I wondered if it had gotten even more sore.
"No, Bill, I guess....that's out of the picture now. Not in the cards for us."
I pulled her to me again and hugged her tight.
Speaking to the back of her head, I said, "Kids are overrated Mona. God knows how Debbie and I survived Kelly's growing up and I'm still not sure about BJ. Besides, you guys are young. Anything can still happen. You're successful, you're hot, you're in love. You're luckier than most people."
"Yeah....we're lucky," she said, pushing back and rubbing the corner of one eye.
"Lucky at what?" Lew said coming up behind us with two drinks in his hand. "Oh, Bill, Mona flew in from Washington a few hours ago and when she heard we were going to get smashed she invited herself to our guy's night out. You don't mind, do you?"
"She's a hell of a lot easier on the eyes than you are. I'm glad she came along."
"For that, Mr. Maitland, you get the pleasure of my company," she said, reaching out and grabbing my drink and handing it to Lew who juggled it along with the two he already had. "Find us a table, husband, and when Bill gets tired I might give you a dance."
He just grinned at her and glanced over at two tall blondes checked him out from the bar, adding, "Don't worry, babe, if I get lonely I think I've already get two dance partners ready to go."
"In your dreams, you couldn't handle one of them and if you tried for two you'd need IVs."
He grinned at her again and walked away, saying, "...but what a way to go."
There was live entertainment about four nights a week and they had a pretty good three-piece band playing 90s and current music hits. What they were playing was fairly fast, but Mona and I slow danced like two comfortable senior citizens. She fit into me like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle.
"You think you and Debbie-"
"Not in this lifetime."
"Lew won't tell me, and if he can resist hot sex he can resist anything, but he did indicate that...what she did would be hard to get past. Did you get tapes or video of her with that professor boyfriend of hers? Is that why you can't ever forgive her."
"That's between me and her, Mona. The fact is, I can't ever get past it, and even if I could, she doesn't want to. The divorce was her idea. The boyfriend was her idea. When she called me to tell me she was divorcing me, she flat out said she didn't love me anymore. That kind of puts a period on it. Why bother to try again?"
"Sometimes people lie..."
"People lie all the time, Mona. If they didn't, Lew and I would be scratching for work."
"Mind if I cut in?"
I looked over Mona's shoulder and saw Sheila Simpson standing behind Mona. She was a little shorter than Mona, but not much. Why the hell did I attract the tall ones? She was dressed in a slinky red gown with a low cut top. These delicious oranges were moving up and down with her breathing. Her lips were redder than ripe Macintoshes. Oh, God!
Mona looked back over her shoulder and something passed wordlessly between the two women. She faced me again and smiled, then whispered in my ear, "And so it begins," and walked away.
Sheila moved forward but didn't touch me until I held my hands out to her.
"You don't mind my being so forward, do you Mr. Maitland," she said, smiling and licking her bottom lip in a way that if it wasn't illegal in most states, should be.
She moved in close to me and we began to move to the music. Mona was more graceful, but Sheila had her own virtues, not the least of which the way she caressed my chest with those breasts and rubbed her thigh between my legs in what had to be obvious caressing, but apparently it was dark and everybody else must have been similarly involved.
"I'm not after you because you have a lot of power in the office," she said, staring into my eyes from a couple of inches away. Then she leaned in and we were kissing. A chaste kiss at first but it went on from there. She pulled back and said, "I just wanted you to know that. I'm not trying to screw my way up the ladder."
"I never thought you were, Sheila. But you've been at the office for a year. There was never a hint that....you know?"
"I...never thought about you...that way. You..."
"You don't need to explain. A friend told me I had the charisma of a turnip. Fat, balding, middle-aged...not every girl's secret dream. But, I'm still too old for you. What are you, 25? 26?"
"Jesus H. Christ. I could be your father, if I'd gotten started a little early. You know how old I am, don't you?"
"Forty one. But you're not my father."
She rubbed me with her knee again and she smiled as I throbbed against her soft flesh.
"No, you're definitely not my father. And some girls like older men."
"I shouldn't ask, but I have to. You're a gorgeous young woman. I know there are guys your age that would crawl across an office full of tacks on their hands and knees to be here with you. I've lost some weight and I went completely bald, but I'm no pinup or stud. If you weren't interested then, why now?"
"A couple of things. You've changed so much. You look younger. You're not flabby anymore. You always move like you're in a hurry to get somewhere. Your...ass looks more like a young man."
She blushed a little.
"I know that sounds crazy, but women notice that. And...you've....got a hard edge. I don't know any other way to describe it. You were always such a sweet guy. You're not sweet anymore. I think your wife dumping you did you good."
"And that's a good thing? That I'm not a nice guy anymore? "
"If I wanted you for a mentor or a boss, yeah I'd like sweet. But...right now, rubbing myself all over you, I'm...you're exciting.....exciting me....if you know what I mean."
As she started rubbing herself against me harder I started pushing back and a little purr started in her throat. I made a quick decision and drew back from her. I tried to be as casual as I could. She looked at me with a question in her eyes.
"I'm sorry, Sheila. You can tell that you're got me very excited. If...if you weren't working at the State Attorney's Office – and if this wasn't the night it was, I'd be tempted. I'd probably wind up in bed with you. But I just lost my wife of nearly 20 years. It hasn't been 12 hours since I was a married man. I – it's just too soon."
"I'm not throwing myself at you because you're who you are at the office, Bill."
"I'm not saying you are. But I've been watching people in offices for nearly 20 years. And a supervisor having a relationship with a subordinate almost never works out well. We couldn't keep it secret. And people would be jealous of you, and pissed at me.
"And if it didn't work out....if you dumped me I probably wouldn't be able to treat you fairly and if I dumped you, would you want to have to stay and be evaluated ultimately by me?
"Even if we just went to bed for one night, we'd still know what happened and it would change things between us. So, I'm tempted. And if we were to meet sometime in the future and you weren't working for the State Attorney, who knows. But you have to know it's not because I don't want to....."
She stepped further back and was about to head back toward a gaggle of girls her age when she stopped herself and licked her lips again.