Bad Doorbell TimingbyNigel Debonnaire©
It was a cold January Saturday morning; the snow was melting, leaving puddles and rivulets on the streets and sidewalks in the sunlight, but it wasn't quite gone yet. I pulled up in a circle drive outside a lovely red brick house, set the van's parking brake, and switched off the engine. My mentor, Billy James Butler, was out of the van before me, looking sharp in his western shirt, string tie, dark slacks and cowboy hat, a gold leaf Bible clutched in his hand with a clipboard where he kept his notes of our progress. "Gonna be a tough one here, Cletus."
"Oh, why?" I said as I came around front of the vehicle to meet him before we rang the doorbell.
"Lookie there. Statue of Mary, right there in the flower bed. Catholic. Maybe we kin talk some sense into 'em, but maybe not. Ready for a tough one, Cletus Swanson?"
I thought for a minute before I nodded my head. "We're doin' God's work here, they oughtta respect that. If they'll just listen, we can save more souls for Jesus."
We walked up the sidewalk and onto the porch. Icicles were dripping from the roof and birds were feasting from a huge birdfeeder on a pole set in the flower bed. The front windows didn't show much: the front room was a nicely proportioned place with a huge sofa and a couple of comfortable chairs; I was glad there was no television set present, because competing with someone's favorite shows was uphill work. Once, Billy James and I were threatened with physical violence because I tried to turn off a lost soul's football game while we were talking to him. Poor man didn't understand his Eternal Salvation was at stake, and told us he would bounce us off his front sidewalk if we did it again. Too bad so many men and women are destined to spend Eternity damned for all time. Right next to the front door a soft light was on in the window of the next room, but the blinds were almost shut.
Billy James rang the doorbell, and a long scream came from inside the house. A man's voice, high up, and it went up and down the scale for several moments before it faded away. I put my ear to the door to see if they had a television set on back of the house, but I could have sworn the yell we heard was live instead of Memorex. It seemed to come from a room in the front of the house. Billy James rang the doorbell again, and a soft man's voice said "Shit" in the distance. I gave Billy James a disbelieving look, and pointed that we should move on before we heard footsteps coming up to the door.
The door opened, and a woman in her mid 40's stood before us in a light green bathrobe, her legs bare and her toenails painted a light green, matching her fingernails. A thin gold chain went around her left ankle and she wore a toe ring on each foot. Her blonde hair was tousled, and her brown eyes looked at us as if we were Martians. "Yes, can I help you?" she said with an irritated voice.
"Good morning, Ma'am," Billy James started. "We're doing a neighborhood survey for the New Hope Church of Jesus Christ, and we're here encouragin' people ta read their Bibles. A lotta your neighbors are interested in our mission and I was wondering if you and your husband would like to talk with us awhile this mornin'."
She looked us up and down, and I noticed a strange thing about her face. It wasn't that she wasn't a lovely woman, she was a pretty as could be, or that her attitude was very hostile, which is wasn't. It was just that a trickle of white stuff was leaking out of the corner of her mouth and trickling southwest about an inch or so. "Who's the pastor of your little church?" she said, her voice mellowing and her eyes becoming softer.
"Brother Hermann Parks," he continued. "We're up on the old highway about a mile north of the Walmart. Been six months since we got started, but we've been growin' like gangbusters doin' the Lord's work." I caught a whiff of her breath, and my heart started beating quicker. That little bit of moisture on her face wasn't saliva. Billy James kept his composure, as usual, but I was getting fidgety. I think he noticed the smell, too, but he gave no sign he did.
"I don't think I've met him."
"Well, this isn't about our church, unless you don't have a church home, ma'am. We're just here to get people to read their Bibles, and find Jesus."
She smiled broadly at us and batted her eyes. "Boys, this is the Catholic Rectory. Fr. Bill is already in the Lord's work and he and I read the Bible every day."
My partner smiled and shuffled his feet a little, looking down. "I'm glad to hear this. . . Mrs.?"
"My name is Shelley. I'm the housekeeper here."
"Miz Shelley. Pleased ta make your acquaintance."
"Yes, Mr. Butler and Mr. Swanson. Pleased to make your acquaintance."
There are an awkward moment, and I looked back at our van. My hand started to sweat around the leather bound gold leaf Bible in my hand. She stood there looking at us, smiling with a trail of semen on her face, waiting for us to say something. My throat had gone dry and my voice was mute; Billy James broad smile faded a little as he looked her straight in the eyes with the determination of a strong faith I knew well. He was an impressive sight in his leather jacket, plaid Western shirt, black string tie and straw hat, a rock just like Saint Peter. He broke eye contact first, and Shelley stepped back from the door, shutting it behind her. A thin smile creased my partner's worn face and he chuckled quietly to himself.
I felt a stirring in my jeans, and I blurted out: "Billy James, I think I feel my cell phone going off. Give me a minute 'n I'll be right with ya." He nodded and went over to the car, looking beyond at as a truck pulling a fishing boat went down the road. Hitting my wife's number on speed dial, I turned away from him to look at the window next to the door, where the blinds had parted slightly. "Honey, I got an emergency," I said urgently when she picked up.
A sign came through the air to me. "Don't tell me: temptation's got you again and you need to get it out of your system?"
My shoulders sagged as did my hopes. "Yep. You're right."
"Clete, I know I'm supposed to obey you and do whatever you want, but this is getting ridiculous. You're doin' the Lord's work, goin' door to door to tell people about Jesus, and you have to stop halfway and come home because some whore in a bathrobe gave you a hardon. Did St. Paul have to stop in the middle of his work to get a blowjob every time he went out preaching? I'm not a convenience store. You can just learn to live with it."
"But Baby. . ."
"Don't 'Baby' me. Ever since you read Rev. LaHaye's book that oral sex was a healthy part of marriage, I've been wearing calluses on my knees. The Bible says that husbands are supposed to love their wives as Christ loves his Church. When do I get some of that kind of love?"
I could see into the window between the blinds, and found the window was directly behind a desk. Shelley was sitting on the desk, her bathrobe open and her legs parted, her head lolling back with her eyes shut and a look of ecstasy on her face. The only time I ever saw that look before was when Sister Evelyn was slain in the Spirit a couple of years ago. A man was sitting on an office chair in front of her, his salt and pepper hair a contrast to his black shirt, and his fuzzy beard brushing against the smooth skin of her thighs. She shaved her crotch just like my wife Cindy did, and I was imagining what she must be feeling. My pants were being stretched and the cold wasn't bothering me anymore. "Do you know how big a pain it is to send the kids next door just so we can have some privacy?" Cindy continued. "Thank God they're too young to know what we're doin'. Thank God my Mother always loves to see them and never asks why they're coming over, but if we let her spoil them too much, they're gonna be animals when they get to be teenagers. I swear, I'll go out with Brother Billy James next week and you can referee their little arguments. . ."
"All right, all right, all right, Cindy, I'll do you first."
The man pushed his face forward, his open lips buried against her smooth lower lips, and she reached down to tousle his hair. He reached up and started playing with her breasts, milking them, squeezing the nipples and palming their perfect tear drop proportions. Shelley wasn't a thin woman, but she wasn't as heavy as Cindy; she was just the right size woman to start my forest fire. It was too much for me, I had to press on: "I'll lick your cunt. I'll lick you and stroke you and make love to you until you have your orgasm first. I'll take you to the moon on gossamer wings."
"Oh, really? Tell me more."
I looked back at Billy James, who was in conversation into his own cell phone. Part of me was worried that he was called Brother Hermann to take my place, but I glanced back through the window and I didn't care any more. "I have to have you, Cindy. I want to ring your chimes, I want to make the Earth move for you. I want to make you feel like a woman."
She purred and I could see her standing in the living room, duster in hand, wearing a tight t-shirt and jeans, her full breasts straining the fabric, her sneakers doing a little dance of anticipation. Her breath was growing heavy and she was ignoring the kid's shouts from the basement. "All right, stud," she said, half purring and half in resignation. "You aren't original, but I love you and I'll let you come home. Mom will wonder why I send the kids over so often, but she doesn't need to know why. Make good on your promise and you'll get rewarded. Everything you like, as much as you like. Deal?"
I nodded, even though she couldn't see me. "Deal. I'll be home soon."
"Don't break any speed laws, sugar."
"Bye." Shelley's head was starting to move in slow circles and she crossed her legs behind the man's head. I watched them for a moment and then remembered Billy James was waiting for me. Turning, I saw him gazing solemnly at me as I returned to the driver's seat of the van. We got in without a word, and I started the engine.
As we pulled out into the street, Billy James looked out the front of the window and said calmly: "Brother Cletus, don't you drive us into a ditch on the way home. My Mavis isn't going to wait for me all day if you get us stuck somewhere."