Back to Bristol Ch. 18


I continued, "Imagine how you would feel if one afternoon you were going to stay late at school for cricket practice say. So Mummy collects Ben and says she'll take him home for his tea, and then she'll come back and collect you at the end of your cricket. But, she doesn't come back. For a couple of hours she leaves you standing at the school gate, feeling very lonely and deserted. Everyone else has gone home, leaving you all by yourself. When she does come, she doesn't properly apologise, she just explains that she and Ben had started a game of Monopoly and she forgot all about you because finishing the game with Ben was very important. How would you feel? That maybe she loves Ben more than you? That she forgets about you easily? That you're not very important to her? How will you feel at the next cricket practice? You'd be worried that she's going to forget you again. You can't quite trust her like you always used to do. Maybe, you'll take a lift with some other cricketer's mother, it would be safer. It would take you a long time to forget all about being left hanging around at the school gate for a couple of hours, wouldn't it? It'd be a long time before you really trusted her again, wouldn't it?"

"She wouldn't do that. She loves me and Ben the same, I know she does. And anyway, we're told to go and sit on the seats near the Head Teacher's office if something like that happens."

"Yes, don't worry, it wouldn't actually happen, and Yes, Mummy does love both you and Ben the same. I do as well. But maybe that day she just made a simple mistake. Well, it would seem far worse to you on the receiving end. Well, multiply those feelings a hundredfold, and that's a bit like I felt. But we have lots of time, there is no rush. And both Mummy and I love you and Ben a lot, and whatever Mummy and I do, we will always be a family. Promise."

He was quiet, thinking. Which was probably the best I could do.

"Can you give me some more time, please Jamie? More time for me to learn to love and trust her again."

He smiled. At last! I thought.

"Sure. Just get to the right answer, Dad."

"I'll do my best, son." I said and went indoors.

I was found Molly in the little kitchen, trying to keep Ben attention so that he wouldn't come out to find his brother and father. "It's alright, Ben, you can go for your swim now."

Molly looked at me, and I said, "You're right, he watches and he thinks. He knows what's going on. But I talked honestly, and said it would take time to get to wherever we are going. I think he appreciated that I talked to him. I guess we'll see if he cheers up or not."

Molly gave me a hug, "Well done, and thank you."

Everyone was happier after that, I guess we had crossed some sort of bridge. Jamie was definitely happier with me. And as I sat and watched my family at dinner one evening, I couldn't help but look at Molly. And I knew I also had to talk to her before this holiday was over, or at least to say something that I need to say to her.

On the Monday night, which was really my last night with them all, I arranged a babysitter through the central office of the holiday village, so that I could take Molly out to dinner. She came out of the bathroom as I was laying on the bed, reading. She looked gorgeous in a simple dress with spaghetti straps over the shoulders, and it fell to just above the knee. It was obvious, at least to me, that she wasn't wearing a bra, her breasts softly jiggled under the material.

I stood up, "You look good. But...."

"But what?" She looked concerned.

"But, my guess is that you're wearing panties, and you shouldn't be." I said with a smile.

She looked very hesitant. To the best of my knowledge, she had never been out without knickers, certainly not with me, and I assumed that she had never done it for Peter.

"I'll make it worth your while. I'll let you into a secret."

She looked at me, very hesitantly. But then her hands went under her skirt, and she sort of shimmied out of her panties and bent over to take them off her high heeled sandals. She held them up and walked towards me, "Well?"

I looked at her, into her eyes as she approached, "I love you, Molly. I love you." I said.

She fell into my arms, and we kissed, "I'll never wear panties again." She said.

"I might hold you to that."

"I was speaking figuratively." She laughed, but then she leant back to look at me, very questioningly. I knew what she was asking, but before I said anything, she asked, "Am I allowed to say that I love you, now?"

"I love to hear it." I kissed her forehead, and then added, "I guess we are now at the end of the beginning. Now we really can find out if we can put it back together. Now you know that I want to."

We had a good evening, and memorable sex. And I was really sad to leave them all the next day.

On my first day back, Carole brought me my first cup of coffee of the day, and a sheaf of notes that looked as if I was going to be busy all morning just reading them.

"OK. You were right. I did need a break. And it was wonderful."

"So? Any news?" She asked.

"Not really, except that I told her I loved her, which was a big line to cross. So, as I said to Molly, we are now really trying to find out if we can make it work."

"Well, if you find out how to make a marriage work all the time, let me know."


"Nothing we won't get through. Rick is just getting more and more fed up with his job. And I'm spending a lot of my time planning and cooking for this 70th wedding anniversary that I told you about. And Rick would like a little more of my time."

"Maybe you need a holiday." I suggested.

"I would if I thought Rick would actually take one. He moans all the time about his job, but just works harder and harder."

"Well, take one when you can. I can cope with a temp for a week or two."

"Thanks. And best of luck with Molly. Let me know if there's anything I can do to help."

I smiled, and Carole was heading out of my office when I said, "Just keep bringing me more coffee and less notes. Oh, and can you ask Myra to come and see me."

"She's out for the rest of the week. She'll be here when you get back from Hawaii."

"Oh." Was all I could say. I guessed that Head Office had her chasing around on something, after all she was H.O. staff. And anyway, chasing up on the planning for the new Abbey laboratories could wait until after I came back from Hawaii, I wasn't that anxious to sit in a meeting with Peter Davies on some redevelopment committee, it was just that I felt I could face him with confidence.

Molly and the boys were back on Friday, and I went around to Ralph's in the evening to see them all. I asked Molly what she would like to do on the Saturday, and she said she would like to come around to my flat and cook me a meal, and sit and talk.

So that's what we did. She arrived saying that she'd warned Ralph that she might not be home that night, and apparently he wasn't in the least bit worried by that. So, it sounded as if it was going to be a very promising evening. Molly cooked, and it was superb, so I complimented her. In fact I cautiously mentioned that I thought she was now a better cook than I remembered. That became a self-inflicted wound when she told me that Peter was an excellent cook and had taught her so much. I could have done without that.

So we changed subject. Now Molly had a fascination with my sex life in my wilderness years, and she asked about my memorable sexual experiences. What had I learnt? What did I want to repeat? What wouldn't I want to ever do again? The questions were reasonable, and the discussion was good. I told her about the girl I'd teamed up with for a period of three weeks consultancy in Prague. She had been very anal. I was never quite sure whether she always wanted anal sex because she enjoyed it, or whether it was because she was convinced that it pleased the man. But either way, I got a lot of anal sex for those few weeks.

And that led onto a discussion of anal sex, something that Molly and myself had not yet done since we got back together. Molly smiled when I hinted, and said I had to remember that she hadn't done it for years, and when the time was right, I would have to be very gentle. That led on to talking about a girl I found in Mexico, who would actually anally fuck herself on my cock. I only had to put my cock head on her anus, and she pushed back and did all the work. That was a great sensation. I could actually remain quite still, which I could do in the early minutes, and she'd work up her own rhythm of fucking herself on me. I think that rather worried Molly, she couldn't quite see herself being able to do that, so she guided the conversation on to oral sex. And that's where it really all fell apart.

I said I'd once eaten out a totally bald pussy, and I loved it, and really wanted to do it again. Now I'd never realised, but Molly does not want a bald pussy. She sees it as a step too far for some reason. And she really wasn't happy that I'd hoped that she would let it happen. But then it got worse. She wanted to know who this girl was; she must have been some terrible fetish slut. And, as much as I could I tried to avoid answering that, eventually I had to admit that it was Myra. There was a fairly stony silence after that for a while.

I tried explaining that Myra was a nice girl, that she had her reasons to shave, that she was a good colleague, that she had a new boyfriend. All to no avail. Eventually, I tried just hugging, cuddling, kissing gently, and suggesting that we could just go to bed. She was obviously hesitant, so I said, "Are you really this upset about a girl who was only a short affair and before we got back together?"

"It's just that you work with her. You see her everyday." She said, but I felt a softening in her voice.

And then I opened my big mouth, "Just like you and Peter worked together at the Hospital."

She went home after that! And I lay in bed half the night staring at the ceiling in the dark.

In fairness, she came back before breakfast on Sunday morning. And we both said we were sorry. And we made up in the traditional manner. I guess it was another bridge crossed, but it wasn't one I don't want to cross again.

I travelled to Hawaii with both Piers McBaine and Stephen Hobbs, and we all chatted happily, but it was still a long, long flight and I'd rather have been in Bristol. But we got there.

Once I'd checked in to the conference hotel and got to my suite, I logged on and checked my email. There was one from Carole to say that she'd decided, in my absence, to take three days off, but that she would be back on Thursday, in plenty of time to get ready to brief me on the state of play for my return. I sent an OK reply to Carole, and a message to Molly just to say that I'd arrived.

My conference started the next morning with a breakfast for all speakers. And as I came into the breakfast room who do a see but Myra.

"Hello. I was about to say: what are you doing here? But I guess Head Office brought you for a reason. It would have been nice of them to tell me."

She smiled, "Yes. Group Accounts want me to do a seminar on group accounting policies. They're convinced that some of the rules they lay down are not always observed as well as they might be. You know, using agreed exchange rates, and codings, all the basics. So I've got to do the same seminar in one of the break out sessions every afternoon for five days. And I'm sorry, but I know someone did try phoning you to tell you, I think you were having a few days holiday, and probably the message never caught up with you."

"Well, that's not your fault. I will save it until I need a bullet against London. What are you doing for the rest of the time? Do the Head Office people have their own programme?"

"Oh No. I just sit at the back of the hall and listen, like everyone else. I'm looking forward to your bit on Wednesday."

"You won't like it. You've heard all the jokes before. And there's no real news in it. Just forward thinking on what a Health Division might look like."

She smiled, "With a young, forward thinking Divisional Director?"

Now I smiled, "The thought never crossed my mind." I paused to look her in the eyes, "Let's find time this week to catch up with each other. We haven't really had a chance to really talk about the important things since you gave me your homily on people staying essentially the same. You were right about that by the way."

She smiled, "Women generally are. And I'd like to catch up."

After that Piers, Stephen and myself seemed to go around like a threesome. Of course I knew a lot more people than they did, and I could introduce them to a lot of ITI stalwarts. I didn't see much of Myra, and I thought I would have to go and seek her out at some stage.

I was in the bar with the pair of them on the Wednesday evening, bathing in the glory of my presentation having gone down superbly well. Two of the main board directors had come up to both congratulate me, and to tell me that they've insisted that the video of my presentation is sent out to all companies in their divisions. I was on a roll!

Stephen however wasn't. "Please, Chris, don't ever bring me on one of these things ever again. I'm an engineer. I like solving engineering problems, not sitting in hall whilst some guy I don't know tells me all about his exciting plans to conquer the world with his new frozen yoghurt product. Just leave me in Exeter where I'm happy. Please."

We were onto about our third 'Cocktail of the Day' by that time, and a degree of honesty had crept into our conversation. What struck me was that he was dashing my high hopes for Stephen's future. I couldn't promote him to be a director of Bristol's production line, with the necessity for any of Frank's director to have to play the ITI corporate game.

On the other hand, Piers was in his element. He just loved learning about the ITI Group, and seemed happy introducing himself to all sorts of people. What I also noticed and admired was that he had a natural presence. People noticed him and treated him with respect, without even knowing who he was.

I was just draining that third cocktail, and thinking these thoughts, when Myra came up. All three of us greeted her warmly, and I invited her to join us for dinner.

As we sat in the dining room, I noticed that quite a few guys came up to chat, on the excuse of congratulating me on my presentation. But then, whilst looking directly at Myra, they would ask me if they might join us in the bar later. Myra would immediately interrupt to say that she was going to break up the party soon anyway, and with heavy emphasis, because she had to go and send a long email of news to her boyfriend in the UK. They seemed to wander off after that.

We didn't actually break up until a group of guys came around saying they'd heard of a great bar that they fancied visiting. The way they said it, and that they seemed awkward in front of Myra when saying it, told me and everyone else at the table that it was a strip joint at the very least. Stephen looked at me as if asking permission as he said he fancied going along.

So we were now just Myra, Piers and myself. We sat on a terrace and gently sipped our drinks and chatted. I then said I fancied going for a walk along the shoreline. Myra was up for it, but Piers said he fancied the idea of going to bed more. So myself and Myra went for a stroll.

For a while we walked in comfortable silence. But then I said, "This walk isn't happening."

"Why not?" she asked.

"Because Molly has a bit of a bee in her bonnet about you. I don't think she'd appreciate that I'm strolling along a moonlit beach with you at ten o'clock at night."

"She should meet up with Will. I'd already decided that this wasn't happening as far as he was concerned."

"Has he got a been in his bonnet about me? What have I done?"

I felt the smile in her voice as she answered, "Well, in crude terms, you did me. And you're my boss, so it's obvious that you took an unfair advantage of me. What did I do that upset Molly, beyond telling her that I wasn't going to let you go? Mind you, that could have been upsetting."

"Well, I guess that was the start of it. She sort of had her hopes that night which you rather crushed, without knowing of course. Now I think she's just straightforwardly jealous, only....." I paused, I wasn't sure how to explain with delicacy. So I changed the subject, "I didn't take advantage, did I?"

"No. I've tried to explain to Will that I wouldn't be with him if it wasn't our little affair that put me back on the right road, so to speak."

I laughed, "I agree. He should thank me that I've had great sex with his girlfriend. He's being very ungrateful. What is wrong with the man? It's as if he was falling in love with you or something."

There was a long pause before Myra said, "Oh! I hope he is."

"Is that the voice of a girl who is in love."

She laughed, "I think it might be. I'm missing him so much this week. And yet we don't see each other mid-week normally anyway. We chat on the telephone, but it's just the feeling that he's just down the road when I'm in Bath and he's in Exeter. I don't like being thousands of miles away and in another time zone."

"Good. It's a nice feeling really, isn't it?"

"I take it you know what it feels like?" She asked.

"Yes, I think I do. No, in fact I know I do." I shrugged, "But I don't know if we can make it. But we're both trying."

"So? What is it about me that upsets her?"

"Officially? That we work together. Unofficially is a little more personal. Are you sure you want to know?"

"I think I can take it."

"OK. We were in a conversation about memorable sex, and I said I'd once eaten out a completely shaven pussy, and that I loved it and wanted to do it again with her some time, when the time was right. And Molly wanted to know where I'd come across such a flagrant abuse of female adulthood. And after a lot of wheedling by her, and avoidance by me, I admitted it was you."

Myra burst out laughing, with sideways looks at me to check that I meant it, "Tell her that you can't repeat it with me, baldness wasn't Will's thing. So it's up to her now."

Now I laughed, "Any idea how I tell her that we strolled along this beach by moonlight, late at night, discussing your pussy hair?"

"Knowing how to handle these difficult situations is what makes you managing director, and the up and coming star of ITI."

"Gee, thanks!"

We strolled along in silence for a while, and were almost back to our hotel when I suggested, "Maybe we should face up to the problem. How about the four of us go out to dinner one evening? Nothing formal or special, a low key bistro type dinner."

"OK. But it would have to be on a Friday evening when Will is coming my way for the weekend. I go down to Exeter quite a lot, it's rarer for him to come up to Bath."

"Well, let me know when." I said as we entered the hotel lobby and were just passing the bar, "Fancy a nightcap?"

"No thanks. I will actually go and send a newsy email to my boyfriend." She answered and headed for the elevators.

It was the following morning, Thursday morning, that Piers upset me at breakfast.

"I should have taken a walk with you last night. I went to bed, but for some reason I didn't sleep well. So, when the time zones were right, I phoned the Abbey, just to catch up on any news."

"And was there any?"

"Not a lot. I spoke to Peter. He sounded quite cheerful, and I was bold enough to remark that he was, that he had reconciled himself to the divorce and sounded as if he was in a very positive frame of mind."

"Good." Was all I said.

But Piers looked at me, and I knew I wasn't going to like what was coming, "He said: he wasn't divorced yet, and he had hopes he never would be."

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