An Average Guy Ch. 01byterrunt©
Constructive criticism please? Thanks.
This story is pretty long, so please, stick with it.
Oh, and this is a story about love, rather than mindless sex; so obviously there isn't much.
All the stories I read on here are about Mafia bosses and all that, and it frustrates me. To an average guy, earning an average amount of money; it just doesn't seem likely. I work my ass off all day and don't have savings of millions of dollars. I have enough to live comfortably, and I don't really want any more. I'm happy with my long-term partner Chrissie. Or I was. That's why I'm here. I needed somewhere to vent, somewhere people wouldn't know me.
My name is Mike Fort. I live in Forks, Washington. Now you're all thinking "yeah, and I bet he's a sparkly vampire" and all that. Well, I'm not, and that just isn't real life.
I'm around 6'2", with spiked black hair and I'm clean shaven. (I'm going to describe everyone involved in this mess properly.)
I share an apartment with Chrissie just outside of town, because the rent's cheaper. Like I said, I'm just an average guy, with an average wage. But like I said, I don't really want any more. I love my job, and I wouldn't trade it for anything. Well, I say anything, but one thing springs to mind, and it sure as hell ain't Chrissie.
I'm trying to be a good man, providing whilst doing more than my fair share around the house. Sometimes, I have to work away, but that's not very often.
I'm a self-employed contractor and I work in any manufacturing plant that needs me. Normally these fall within a 60-mile radius, but sometimes they're further away.
I actually grew up in California, but I got offered a job out here for more money. I wasn't going to take it but then I met Chrissie. We seemed to hit it off almost instantly. I know people are all like "Yeah, that shit only happens in fairytales." Well, I guess my life must be a fairytale, because that's what happened.
Now, being on these plants, working, means I don't have a lot of time at home, sometimes working a 12 or 13 hour day, then travel times on top. I seem to spend most of my life tired, but somebody has to do it, right?
And that's why I find myself on this darkened road at 5AM, travelling at 70MPH in my truck.
I knew what was going to happen almost a week ago. I knew that the bearings on the driveshaft would burn out at the plant, but there's more money in it if you let the plant stop. I mean, sure, it fucks their day up, but why shouldn't I make more money for doing these stupid hours?
The asphalt was blurring under the lights from my truck as the tachometer approaches 80.
I flicked the radio on, hoping to shake off my light-headed mood. I flick through the stations, settling on one playing an old Thin Lizzy record. Gotta appreciate the greats, right?
I'm headed to Oregon today, of all places. I didn't mind the extra trip, but I did mind the extra time alone. Time alone was something I avoided at all costs. Ever since Alice had kissed me.
I'll tell you a little about Alice now. She's my little sister. I'm 29, she's 27. We were related on my mothers side, because my father did a runner as soon as my mom told him she was pregnant with me. Good fucking riddance. I grew up with Bob, and I consider him my real father. Being a father is way more than donating the sperm.
But I digress.
Alice is around 5'8" with blond hair and the most electrifying blue eyes you've ever seen. She's the type of woman you can imagine being in the centrefold of Playboy. That hot, honestly.
We had always been incredibly close, from the moment we were old enough to understand what brother and sister meant. That had never changed, and she called me every weekend, just to chat. Or she did.
Hell, we were so close she even started smoking when I did.
I saw a sign that said: St Helens 3 Miles and I reached for my smokes.
I lit one and inhaled, feeling instantly better.
There's something about a soothing Marlboro that puts my mind at ease.
And anyways, I couldn't have one once I reached the plant because I'd have the supervisor on my back, as if his presence could make me work faster. Whilst I'm in this job to make money, I do not fuck around. That's why I get called so much.
I flicked the cylindrical tube out of the window as I saw a sign reading St Helens Paper Mill. Smoking on site was a big no-no if you ever wanted to be invited back. In fact, everything except doing the job flawlessly was a big no-no if you wanted to come back.
I pulled through the gates, and into a vacant space in front of the main entrance. Luckily, I wouldn't actually have to be going into the pulper today, it was a strictly external job. If you went inside, you'd stink of wet pulp for the next week. It was a very dirty job.
I roughly manhandled my tool box off the bed of the truck and dropped it by the passenger door. I opened the door and grabbed my hi-viz jacket and hardhat. One of the many rules stipulated by the company because of the lifting trucks around.
I had to report to the office and sign in before I could even enter the plant, so I did that, then proceeded to the pulping room. These machines are huge, capable of swallowing 20 tons of paper in one go, so you can imagine the motors and the driveshaft's to get the damn thing running.
I figured that I'd need to remove the cover, remove the old bearings, put in the new ones, grease them and replace the cover. It should take me around 2 hours.
As I walked to #3, I wondered why it was running. If the bearings die, the shaft will still run, but it will generate excessive vibration and heat, as well as probably bend the shaft, shear the blades and fuck the motor. I wasn't happy it was running. It would be around a 5-day job to replace all of the components, assuming the plant had the components to hand, which they rarely did. Then when things break, they shit a brick.
This plant runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, which involves a team of around 20 maintenance workers, on call around the clock. But the plant uses contractors for maintenance, of which I was #21.
Unfortunately, the night shift operator had gone home at 4AM, without telling the day shift the bearings had gone. So basically, the day operator had powered up as normal then gone to make some coffee.
Well, I had a job to do, and I was going to do it. I stabbed the stop button with my thumb, and waited for the machine to power down. Unfortunately, I also have to disable the motor, because whilst the stop button stops everything, the motor isolator switch is on a separate circuit. I walked to the drive room and isolated the motor. The drive room is around a 5 minute walk from the pulpers, and when I got back the damn thing had been started again. But, because I had shut the motor down, the operator was scratching his head in confusion because the machine was shutting down without his input.
"Hey, I'm doing maintenance on this machine bud, it shouldn't have been turned on this morning to be honest. Sorry mate." I said to him as I isolated the pulper itself.
He walked off, muttering something about coffee, so I got on with the job.
2 hours and 7 minutes later I was finished. The machine was back on, and I was back in my truck headed for home. I had time off from now, and strictly speaking, I shouldn't have been in Oregon this morning, but I figured I may as well. Like I said, if you want to be asked back...
Anyway, I was going home. To my real home in California.
It was the 20th of December, and I had until the 5th to be at home and share it with my family.
Chrissie wouldn't be coming with me. She and her family were going to Venice for Christmas. She had invited me, but I had declined. Why would I go to a foreign country to enjoy something I could enjoy in America?
I had a quick shower and shave, then I was straight back out of the door, headed for Seattle-Tacoma International, to board the United Airlines flight to San Francisco.
Check in, boarding and the flight had no issues at all. It was officially the only flight I've ever been on that I had a straight run with no delays.
The problems started when I hit the ground at San Francisco International. The only person there was Alice. I know I said she had kissed me, but I didn't tell you how. I just mentioned it, and that's why I didn't like being alone. She had merely kissed me as a sister would kiss a brother normally, but she couldn't have known the reaction she had on me.
The softness of her lips, the feel of her hair blowing at the side of my face and the smell of cinnamon- her smell- combined to give me the hardest erection I have ever had. And from then on I couldn't stand the thought of what my little sister had done to me. I couldn't stand that I could possibly be having incestuous thoughts about someone I held so dear to me. It drove me to avoid her for almost four months, until I one day called her out of the blue. And I had the same problem. Her voice was like silk, the way it came through the speaker of the phone, and I couldn't believe how much I wanted to sit there for hours on end listening to it. Unfortunately I must have seemed distracted as my mind reeled and she promised to call me back in a few weeks. A few weeks turned into a few months, and finally a year from the kiss, and she hadn't called since the day I called her. I was a wreck for a long while, because I felt like I'd lost my sister, and because, as much as the thought mortified me, I felt like I'd lost a lover. I laughed when I first thought that over because we'd never actually done anything that could be even remotely attested to us being lovers.
As I disembarked the plane as slowly as I could, I felt like I needed to get back on and let it take me wherever the hell it was going. But at the same time, I wasn't going to. The selfish portion of my brain was thinking "Fuck you Mike, man up. She's not done anything."
And that's how I ended up with her wrapped in my arms, and once again I had an erection.
I would have to get used to this, I had 15 days of this to contend with.
After I claimed my bags, we both walked over to Alice's car.
Only, it wasn't Alice's car sat there. It was the orange Pontiac Firebird I had restored in college.
My mom and dad had kept this for me when I moved to Forks, and every time I came down they sorted it so I could use it. Luckily, there was no snow to contend with as I drove the car out of the parking lot, into the darkness.
Alice hadn't said a lot to me since I got here, only "Hey Mike." and I was waiting for her to speak what was on her mind. The trick with Alice is that if you ask, she'll remain tight-lipped forever, but if you don't ask she'll just tell you.
"So, how's life in Forks?" She asked.
I knew this was the build-up to the explosion of what she had to say, so I played her game.
"Pretty boring. Long hours, shit pay, the usual. Oh, and it's fucking cold." I laughed.
She smiled tightly.
"How's things down here then Alice?" I tentatively probed.
"Pretty bad actually. Jon just split with me, so you know..." Alice replied.
"Who the fuck was Jon?" I asked, silently kicking myself in the head. I should know this, I should.
"We'd been dating for six months. I didn't realise we hadn't talked in that long." She pouted. "How's Chrissie?" She asked tightly.
"She's fine, better than ever really."
A look crossed my sisters face that I couldn't interpret.
Then I could. Could it have been jealousy clouding my beautiful sister's face?
"So you've not spoken to me because that slut told you not to?" She viciously asked.
I was shocked. I had never seen my sister speak like that about anyone. Chrissie and Alice got on like a house on fire, and I was horrified that she'd jumped to that conclusion.
"Not at all! I've been busy, you know..." I mentioned, not wanted to prod the fires.
Chrissie had been uncomfortable with how close I was with my sister. I remembered the blazing argument we'd had just before I left for work that morning, at how I was putting my sister before her.
I had laughed in her face and yelled "Of course I am, she's my fucking sister!"
That was the last I'd said to her. Oh well.
Truth be told, I was happier spending Christmas with Alice anyway. And why wouldn't I be? The cute little blond next to me was the glue to my world. If she came unstuck, my world crashed around my ears. I remembered the one time we'd had an argument and she'd told me to fuck off and die, and that it would make everyone happier. I'd just had a fight with our dad, because he'd called my mom a bitch.
I had made mistakes at work, and I struggled concentrating on anything. And to make it worse, I'd wrecked my truck, earning me 3 weeks in the hospital. I had come close to dying, which scared Alice shitless. But according to the doctors, I'd made a miraculous recovery and could be moved to home. I didn't break any bones in the crash, but I cracked my skull in 3 places and had to have plates installed. It was around 6 months before I fully recovered and Alice spent every possible minute with me.
"Sure, busy..." Alice replied.
We pulled into the driveway at home, and my mom and dad came out to greet us, bathed in light under the porch light.
My mom pulled me into a bone-crushing hug and said "My baby, you're home."
My father was much more restrained, offering a firm handshake and a "Welcome home son."
That's the thing with Bob, the moment I had told my mom that Bob was my dad, Bob had swelled with pride. And he'd always treated me like a son, regardless. I think he always would have, even if I'd chosen to meet my birth father.
Both of them together had never failed to cheer me up, so I was smiling when I looked for Alice.
Alice had already gone inside the house.
I hauled my bags upstairs and dumped them in my teenage room. As I flicked on the light, I noticed that everything was how I'd left it, aside from the room now being tidy. There were still Metallica posters on the cream walls, still papers on the desk, albeit now in piles and still clothes in my drawers. I smiled to myself as I pulled out a shirt designed for a 5'10" frame.
On every possible surface there were pictures of me and Alice, on days out, or on days we just felt bored.
"She's grown into quite the remarkable young woman, hasn't she Mike?"
I span round, and Bob was stood in the doorway. I replaced the picture I had hold of, the last one we took before I left for Forks.
"And then some." I replied concisely.
It was true. Giggly little Alice had grown into a poised and elegant young woman. She had studied in college and Law School to get her law degree. She'd just become qualified and was doing very well the last I'd heard. Promotions seemed to be throwing themselves at her, and for a county prosecutor that's a very, very good thing.
But Alice could also switch off. As is the case with a lot of people, they're always worrying about work. She came in, got changed and just forgot about it. "If I'm not there, it's not my problem." She used to reply when I asked how she did it. How I envied her. I couldn't stop thinking of work, but I suppose it doesn't help when you're self-employed.
I was ready to pass out, so I went to the bathroom and climbed straight into my bed.
For the first time since I could remember, I didn't dream about Alice. I didn't dream about anything, I don't think, or at least, I couldn't remember if I had.
I awoke to the smell of coffee and bacon, and it smelt fantastic. I looked at the alarm clock and noticed it was ten o'clock. I yawned and stretched, feeling like a big, happy balloon was swelling on my insides.
I hurried getting dressed, dressing in a black sleeveless shirt and jeans. I didn't need anything fancy; I wasn't planning on doing anything.
As I hit the bottom of the stairs, I saw my mom and dad sat at the table. Alice was nowhere to be seen. I was slightly crestfallen, but I thought maybe she was just sleeping.
"Morning dear." My mom called from the table with a smile.
I was content to pour myself a mug of coffee, rather than reply. My mom knew me, so she knew how I was in the morning. Normally she would complain at my ignorance, but in the morning was the only time I could get away with it.
But, I replied anyway. "Morning. Just you two?"
"Yeah, Alice went to the mall with friends." Bob answered.
"Who goes to the mall at this time? I swear, friends going to mall was something they did at 16, not now." I laughed.
"Girls enjoy shopping." My mother replied simply.
I didn't enjoy shopping in the slightest, so I had to take her word for it.
"What time did she say she'd be back?" I probed.
"Not 'til late, I don't think." My mom answered this time.
I could feel my good mood disintegrating, like someone had popped the balloon.
I finished my cup of coffee.
"Well, I think I'm gonna go catch up with Lewis, if he's still around?" I made plans, if Alice was going out, so was I.
"Sure, he calls sometimes, asking if you'll be around. He's moved back into his mom's, poor woman had a stroke, so he takes care of her." Mom mentioned.
I pulled up outside Annie McTague's house. It closely resembled ours; detached, 2 stories.
I knew Lewis would be happy to see me, we'd not caught up since I last saw Alice.
I also knew he'd be a little pissed at my absence. I hadn't called or anything, so I hoped he'd forgive me.
We'd gotten into a fight in college, and we both had no desire to repeat the incident.
I rapped loudly on the door.
It opened quickly, and Lewis appeared.
Lewis is around 6', and is built like a tank. He works in the local car tuning garage, and has done since he was old enough to get a job.
He did a double take when he saw me.
"Wow, I thought you were dead or something."
"Sorry." I apologised guiltily.
"Beer?" He asked.
This is the reason why me and Lewis are so close. I used to joke that we could go 10 years without seeing each other and the first thing he'd ask is if I wanted a beer.
I followed him into the spacious lounge, and then into the gigantic kitchen. My mom had managed to utilise all of the space, and had decorated in such a way as to make the kitchen seem smaller, just to make it more welcoming. Here, Annie had gone the complete opposite way, trying to make it seem larger.
Lewis pulled 2 bottles of Coors out of the fridge. He's the only guy I know who'll drink more beer than he will anything else.
He led the way back into the lounge, collapsing into the sofa.
"So, how's it hanging? And just for the record, I think it's pretty shit that you've decided that abandoning your family and friend was the correct decision. As much as she denies it, Alice has been really cut up."
Now you're probably wondering why he knew that.
Well, Lewis's little sister Beck was- and still is- Alice's best friend. Beck is, in her own way, a very beautiful girl. She's not as slender as Alice, and she's slightly smaller at 5'5", with brown hair. She's very giggly, and never, ever shuts up.
"I know it was a really terrible thing to do, but I had to have some time to sort my head out. You know?" I was reluctant to get into this with Lewis. As amazing a friend as he is, I still feel uncomfortable discussing this topic with him.
"Want to talk about it?" He asked gently.
"Nah man, I just got my head sorted, I don't really wanna dredge it all up again."
"Okay, no worries."
He then launched into a debate with me about the NFL teams this year, who was playing well, and who wasn't.
We ended up watching an action movie after around 3 hours of talking. That was two more hours killed.