Author's note: It's been a while since my last post, but I'm back with a story by popular demand (you know who you are...). Many thanks for all the feedback to date, and hugs and kisses to those who are now friends as a result. Special thanks to Allie - a real star.
Sometimes it takes the sky to fall in before you realise things are not quite what they seemed...
Okay, more precisely, it took a ceiling not the sky, but the principle is the same. The best part of two decades of supposed knowledge can disappear out of the window along with a few cubic metres of plaster dust and the comfortable feeling of equanimity and certainty. Of course, a little duplicity and the acknowledgement of the unknown also came into play, but mostly it was just a few hundred woodworms.
My name's Allie to my friends or Alison to my more distant colleagues, my mother, and others. I'm what might be termed a typical English mum for these days, given that I divorced nine years ago when my son, Nathan, was just approaching ten, I have a full-time job (writing copy for websites), a small mortgage and a large overdraft. According to my best friend Melissa, I'm an atypical example of that species because I am, in her words, "ddc" -- drop-dead cute. Hey, she said it, not me, and I would like to note that comments like that are NOT why I adore her, and NOT why she is my best friend. Really. First thing most mornings, I even think that she might need her head examined, but let's just say that I am aware that I can still turn heads despite being in my mid-thirties now.
I think I've graduated to 'atypical' status for another reason as well, and that's why I'm sitting here listening to the pitter-patter of little keystrokes. I don't exactly need to write down what's been happening for the last few weeks, but I know from recent conversations with a number of people that my story might help to a few others out there who are in my position, or considering it. And besides, just knowing what I'm going to tell you all about is giving me a real thrill... Let me fill you in, so to speak.
It was a dark and stormy night... Really, it was stormy and let's face it, you don't get many bright nights (not out here in the countryside, anyway. After a month of hot, dry weather a wind had started to howl in the early evening and distant thunder rattled around the hills as soon as the night began to fall. The temperature dropped by ten degrees -- a relief -- and even my holidaying son, home from college for the summer, had made his way back to the little house not along after the sun dipped behind the trees.
By the time Nathan headed for his room and I made my own weary way to bed, fat raindrops were splatting against the windows and the old roof-tiles, their percussions a rather beautiful syncopation against the near-constant howl of the building wind. Despite the fact that it was high summer, snuggling down into the bed felt like hibernation. Despite the noise of nature at its more demonstrative, I was asleep in seconds.
I awoke with a start, disoriented in the darkness, the echoes of a loud report ringing in my head and in my room. On autopilot, I slipped out from under the covers and dragged a little robe over the ratty t-shirt I was using as a nightie, trying to wake myself sufficiently to work out what on earth had woken me so abruptly. A muffled curse from Nathan set my radar on the right track.
"Nat? You Okay there?"
"I think so, mum. Bit of a problem here though."
I headed along to the second of the two bedrooms the house offered, and pushed the door open with some difficulty. "What's blocking... oh..." The floor of my son's room was strewn with plaster, rubble and timbers. Above us, the wind swirled around a gaping space. In short, what was once ceiling was now floor.
"Sorry, mum, I just heard this big bang and woke up to find all this."
I stepped gingerly over the debris and peered at my son in the gloom, "Forget that, are you okay? Did anything hit you?"
"I got lucky, I guess. It must have all collapsed on the other side of the room first. I'm really sorry though, I mean-"
"Oh hush! It's hardly your fault, is it?" I raised an eyebrow, "Unless you were sneaking through the loft hatch for a cigarette?"
"Mum! How many more times, it was just the once and I hated it!"
"Sorry, sorry, I know. I'm probably just a bit shook up. God, what a mess!"
We looked around at the carnage, stopping only when the first raindrops spattered against us. I looked up to see a small hole in the tiles.
"Looks like the collapse has brought down some of the roof as well."
Nathan nodded, "Not a lot, but yeah."
"Well you can't stay in here. It can't be safe." My organisational capabilities kicked in, content in the knowledge that my level-headed son would make sure that whatever I planned would work, "Go grab a bucket or three and we'll make sure that the rain doesn't wreck too much."
"I could get the steps and climb up to see if there's anything I can block up there..."
"Or break your neck in a dozen other ways. Let's reassess in the morning when we can see better."
Nathan nodded and went to push back the coves. He paused, "Uh, mum? I don't actually have much on under here so if you could...?" His eyes indicated the door.
"Oh don't be soppy," I laughed, "It's not as if I haven't-"
"Mum? By not much, I mean nothing."
"Oh... oh, right." I managed an 'embarrassed mum' laugh and retreated from his room. How times change, I was thinking, all innocent, you just don't notice how they grow up so fast, so suddenly... A flash, an image of his father as a young man -- when he was still fanciable -- crossed my mind, and I allowed myself a rueful smile. They had been happy times, innocent times in a way, but although there was an innocence about the place now, it was entirely different. A sigh might have passed my lips as I waited for Nathan to appear on his bucket quest.
In the end it took us more than half an hour to locate a sufficient number of buckets and bowls to capture all of the leaks, and it took Nathan a further fifteen minutes to work out how to reconnect an electrical fuse (or whatever the hell he did) so that we could have sufficient lighting to see what had gone on.
"It's a mess," we said, in unison, when we finally got to see Nathan's room by the light from the reconnected landing light.
"That's an understatement," my son sighed, "I'm not sure I could sleep in there even if there weren't ten buckets making so much noise."
"I wouldn't dream of making you, but the sofa is way too small for you now..." It was true -- Nathan had shot up amazingly during the summer -- but in any case I was beginning to feel the shock of the destruction, "Actually, I'm not I can sleep anyway, but..." I had a big, big bed, "but if you want to stay in my room tonight at least, there's plenty of space. Sleep or talk, I think I'm up for either."
That's all it was, I swear. I had never, ever had any other thoughts about my son, my boy, and that night there was a certain appeal in the thought of company in a house that was suddenly pulled apart in one area. Plus I'm a mother. I could hardly have my son uncomfortable or whatever when I'm all snug and cosy in bed. And I'm a selfish mare - I could hardly give up said cosy bed...
I never had any thought or doubts about my offer, and nor, it seemed, did Nathan who accepted with a shrug, no hint of any other thoughts crossing his face. "That's great, mum. Like you say, at least for tonight."
We finished our cold drinks and headed for the relative comfort of my room a few minutes later. And I swear -- truly -- that I never had the slightest doubt or 'odd' thought. I slipped into my usual spot on one side of the wide bed, sliding my little robe off once the covers were safely pulled up to my neck (I may not have had any odd thoughts, but my innate shyness was evidently subconsciously functioning on high alert), and Nathan walked around to the opposite side, letting loose a sigh of relief as he stretched under the covers there.
I had offered sleep or talk, privately thinking that only the latter was a viable option for me, but I was asleep in moments.
I awoke to many unusual sensations, together combining to leave me a little disoriented at first. The wind had dropped leaving an echoing silence in the little house, shocking in its way after the natural chaos of the night before. It was light, although only a pre-dawn glow filtered through the curtains. And then there was that other thing.
There was an unmistakable presence in my bed, other than me. It wasn't that I'd never had company in there since Nathan's father had left, but in what was nearly a decade, there had been precious few nights when I had shared, and certainly none in almost a year. To feel the mattress compressed by more than just my own weight was unsettling for a few moments until I remembered who was in there with me. And then came a second wave of unsettling feelings.
Nathan wasn't just sharing the compression of my mattress or the comfort of my covers. My son was close to me, the few feet of space that had separated us before I fell asleep reduced to a few millimetres now. It had been a long time since any guy had shared my bed, and that gap in time seemed to stretch as I felt Nathan's hand on my upper arm -- it now seem like an eternity since I not only shared that bed space, but had been touched within its confines by another, no matter how innocently.
And then... and then I began to realise something else. As soon as the term 'innocently' formed in my mind, I began to doubt it. I didn't react, didn't leap up in horror, physically or mentally... but I did begin to wonder.
My son's breathing was deep, but what I had taken at first to be the breathing of a sleeping form I now began to realise could be something else altogether. Nathan's breaths were indeed deep, but there was a rapidity to them that belied the idea of sleep.
It wasn't until that precise second, I swear, when I felt the first tiny inkling of something... other... some vague, distant sensation that I was no longer just a mother to this boy... this young man... who was so close to me now. When my sleep-fogged brain finally came to terms with the idea that there was a tiny chance that Nathan could be awake and laying there so close, I felt the tiniest flicker of something deep within my belly that had nothing whatsoever to do with motherhood, the only emotion I had ever felt before in connection with my son.
My body switched fully from sleep to hyper-alert mode. Something made me play possum, some desire to understand what my son was thinking or feeling, maybe... or maybe something a little darker... in any case, I forced my breathing to maintain steady, deep rhythm.
For what seemed like the longest time, there was no movement, no change in the arrangement of our bodies or limbs. Nathan rested being me, both of us facing the doorway, within millimetres but not quite touching, the only contact his left hand on my upper arm. It wasn't so much Nathan shifting position that sent my heartbeat soaring, but a subtle movement that brought a certain part of his anatomy -- a certain hard part -- into the gentlest of contacts with the thin fabric of my t-shirt nightie where it covered my bum.
My Nathan -- my son -- was beside me in my bed, close, awake and now excited. From nowhere, emotions never before experienced by me flooded through my system. Unmistakably and undeniably, the proximity and excitement of my son sent a wave of arousal through every nerve and fibre of my being. But was imagining things? Was I exaggerating everything in my mind -- half-crazed mind?
Nathan softly shuffled closer, closing the gap between us as gently as he could manage. It was all I could do not to cry out -- with an emotion that might have been tinged with alarm but which was mostly comprised of sudden, shocking, desire. Any doubts I'd had about what Nathan might have been feeling were washed away as I felt his hardness pressed more firmly against the soft flesh of my butt, and any doubts I might have had about what was causing his excitement dissipated as the fingers of his hand shifted very slightly from my upper arm to the side of my breast.
As time stood still, I became almost painfully aware that Nathan was dressed in just boxers and a t-shirt -- and more to the point, that I wore just that old t-shirt as a nightie. I also became aware that my son was gently -- almost too gently to notice -- increasing and decreasing the pressure between us. With each subtle, slight, gentle rock of his hips I could somehow feel more of his erection -- and each delicate movement raised the pressure within me.
One miniscule fraction of my mind refused to believe what was happening -- refused to both acknowledge what my Nathan must be feeling, and refused to accept that it aroused me in such a shockingly unexpected way -- but despite that tiny fragment of my consciousness, it was so hard not to cry out in disappointment when my son rolled quickly away from me and out of the bed.
Before I could quite work out what was happening, he had shuffled out of the room and the sound of the bathroom door closing told me where he'd headed. My fevered brain could only guess at what that might mean, but when he didn't return within a couple of minutes I finally dared to wonder... hope... With a shake of my head, confused and not a little embarrassed at what I was thinking, I slipped from the bed and crept hesitantly towards my son's new lair.
I had been worried about getting close and him emerging, catching me in my naughty role as spy-mum, but I needn't have fretted. I was still several feet from the door when the unmistakable sounds of his panting, gasping breaths made themselves heard. A low keening sound accompanied the muffled grunts and gasps and I was flooded with yet more arousal as I acknowledged what my son was doing in there -- and what had prompted his retreat.
I was wondering whether I dare risk just the tiniest touch of self-pleasure when the noises from the bathroom grew in intensity and pace. Somehow, the knowledge that my boy was reaching his climax still took me by surprise, and my left hand snaked under the front of my old t-shirt, seeking my heat and moisture, before I turned and fled back to the bed.
As Nathan let relief flood him in the safety of the bathroom, my own need for release was mounting to a seemingly unstoppable height. It was all crazy, all so unplanned, unexpected... all so very intense... but I couldn't let go, just couldn't. I'm no different to most women, and my orgasms -- rare as they might be -- tend to be long, drawn out affairs. Certainly not something I could risk Nathan returning and seeing -- no matter how that held a shocking appeal to me. I needed time to thick, time to consider what had happened, and for that I needed the pretence of innocence. Somehow I managed to take a few deep, calming breaths, dragging myself back from the brink and into some semblance of calm before Nathan crept back into the room, intent on not disturbing me.
Alright for you, I thought, my mind whirling as he settled across the bed from me
What a day that became. Nathan dashed off somewhere as early as I guess he dared, making some excuse about needing to meet up with Tom (his friend from the next village), and I set about trying to get a builder to look at the damage to the bedroom ceiling and the roof above it.
Mostly though, I spent my hours in deep, confusing thought. Debate, even.
Despite the evidence, I was still struggling to come to terms with what had happened. As the day wore on, though, I was finally able to acknowledge the truth of the events of the early morning, and the truth of my pleasure. What I couldn't be so sure about was what it really meant from Nathan's perspective, and just how much of an aberration his behaviour had been to him.
At a little after five that afternoon, with builders due to arrive to look at the damage no earlier than the next day, I was surprised to discover that I had come up with a wild plan to try to fill in the considerable gap in my knowledge. Had it been a circumstantial one-off, or was there something deeper in Nathan's behaviour?
I had researched as much as I dared -- as skilled as I was at writing copy for a wide variety of websites, I'm actually pretty dumb when it comes to anything computer-related -- but all of the answers I'd received served to add to my confusion. Because I have a naturally enquiring mind (or, yes, because I'm a nosy bitch) I found myself still needing answers, and willing to take rather drastic steps in order to satisfy that curiosity.
With the builders not even due to look at the damage until the next day, there was at least one more opportunity to have my son share my bed that very night, and although I didn't want anything to really happen -- honestly -- I understood well enough that the opportunity was too precious to lose. If he became excited once more, if his behaviour indicated that he wanted to be placed in that sort of proximity again, then at least I would know that I aroused him. And yes, I had to admit to myself that I liked that idea. Or rather, adored that idea.
That would only leave me the question of whether it was specifically me that engendered that response in him, or whether any female would do. It was a case of 'might as well be hung for a sheep as lamb' given what I was already thinking of for the night, and I determined to find out a little more -- as subtly as I could -- before we even headed for bed that night... Now there was a thought that gave me pause.
I retreated to the bathroom, locking the door behind me even though Nathan wasn't due home for another hour. I didn't want my sudden need to interfere with my plans even by chance. As masturbation sessions go, it was extremely rewarding.
I think part of me -- a subconscious part, maybe -- thought that seeking relief behind the closed bathroom door might remove, or at least quieten, the inquisitive part of me that was planning its nefarious ways for later that night. Unfortunately -- or rather, fortunately -- that did not prove to be the case, and I was soon into the swing of my investigations when Nathan appeared back at the house.
I left him to eat before I moved myself into the kitchen where he was trawling through an Xbox magazine, setting my trusty laptop down on the counter by the window and opening an internet session I had set up earlier. I let out a sigh -- probably an overly theatrical one, but hey, I'm paid to write garbage not act in soap operas.
"Tough job, mum?"
"You could say that, Nat. I guess you might like it, but I don't get much of a kick out of describing the skimpy outfits this mob are selling." If I thought he might bite, I was disappointed. Or was I?
"Not my thing," he said, without even looking up from the magazine.
"I thought all you teenage guys were into skimpily-clad women. Something, you're not telling me, Natalie?"
He deigned to look up long enough to give me a dirty look which turned quickly into a smile, "Nice try, mum, but you're gonna have to put up with a string of my girlfriends over the next year or two, so no nice young guys will be presented for you."
"They'd hardly be much use to me if you were presenting them anyway, would they?" I countered, "But you never know, I might be bisexual and just haven't told you. Perhaps I'm actually looking forward to your string of girlfriends." Bulls-eye.
"You're, um, not, though, really? I mean, um, obviously if you are then... well then that's okay and all that but.. I mean, really?"
"Well now," I gave him a mischievous grin, "Not that it's any of your business, I..." There was a flicker of something that almost put me off my stroke, but I finally recovered enough to put him out of what I was rapidly realising was his misery, "I am, in fact, entirely straight, so I won't be lining up a series of girlfriends for you."