Lonely Night

byNepenthe©

A few years ago I had one of those moments that happen to everyone in my line of work. I began to question whether or not I wanted to continue. I arranged to have someone relieve me on my current job, and I went to spend some time alone and with the intention of getting some good soul searching in. A friend of mine and I own a little cabin in Nebraska by a lake. I figured it was the best place for me to go and work things out.

I had been there for three days, and my routine was pretty well set by that time. I would wake up, drink coffee, fish, eat and then read myself to sleep. I wouldn't call it the best time of my life, but it was the down time I needed. But, like all things it wasn't to last. Carrie, my friend's cousin, had asked to borrow the cabin and didn't know I was going to be there. I had only met her once before, and she was fun enough to be around, but I still didn't feel like socializing. We had a brief conversation where we both offered to leave, but it was late, and neither of us felt like taking the drive. Finally she suggested that she stay the night and would find a better place to stay in the morning. We agreed, and I went to cook dinner, and she set about opening a bottle of wine and lighting a fire.

Neither of us talked much during dinner. She seemed rather subdued from what I remember of her. My fish was decent, and her wine was better. The fire was too hot, and it wasn't long before I excused myself to put on some lighter clothes. When I came back, she had done the same. She was wearing a lightweight wrap for a skirt, and a simple white t-shirt. It was a nice combination on her, and for the first time that evening I thought of something other than my own problems. Another bottle of wine came and went in relative silence, but when the next was opened she made an attempt at conversation.

"You know, when I saw your car parked in the driveway this afternoon, I thought Frank told you I'd be here. You know, giving you the heads up of when you could make a pass and have some luck. I always got the feeling that he would want us to get together. Make his best friend officially part of the family and all. Of course when I saw your face, I knew it wasn't that. Not the most welcoming look a girl's ever gotten."

"Don't take it personally; I've had a bad week. Incidentally, when we first met, Frank told me to stay away. He seemed pretty serious at the time."

The words sounded a bit too gruff and a bit tipsier than they sounded in my head. I tried to give a smile to soften it, but it probably looked more like a grimace. She shifted to swing her legs onto the couch. When she did, there was just enough gap in the wrap for me to notice the lack of fabric around her waist. She was sitting three feet from me without panties, and drunk and depressed, and it all made my heart bump one beat too fast, then it was over. "So, why did you come here?"

"I caught Gary cheating on me. I needed somewhere to think. You?"

"I almost got hurt the other day. I needed somewhere to think," I said. She leaned back a bit more and closed her eyes for a second. She wore an odd expression, but it was gone when she opened her eyes again. "I'm sorry to hear about you and Gary. I liked him when I met him."

"Funny, that's how I felt. I knew he always had a wandering eye, but what guy doesn't, you know? It's a tired old story. I had no idea. I came home early. I walked in. Blah, blah, blah." The wine made the bitterness in her voice sound twice as harsh.

"You actually walked in? That's pretty rough. Was it someone you know?" Rule of depression number one: If you can think enough about someone else's problems, you can forget about your own. Talking about this was better than talking about me.

"Same old story, again, his secretary. When I walked in he had her bent over the foot rail of the bed, pounding away. He was wearing his cowboy hat. You know, it's that hat I'm going to remember for the rest of my life. It's silly, but I kind of thought he wore it for me, like it was special to us or something. She saw me first, and started screaming. Gary was always slow on the uptake and started going after it harder than before, thinking he was the reason she was screaming. It took a while for the two of them to separate, and she kept trying to cover herself with this little stitched pillow I had on the bed. She was holding it to her crotch and her hand was covering most of the writing. All I could read was the 'HO' in 'HOME'. It seemed rather fitting, so I kind of laughed. By the time he could start making up excuses, I was already walking out the door."

"I know what that's like. I've been there. It hurts like hell for the first few months, and then it's only a twinge every now and then when the weather is going to change. Almost like a trick knee."

She nodded her head twice real slow. There was a stillness and a silence that lasted a long time. I was about ready to think she had fallen asleep, when she took another sip of her wine. She gave another little smile and looked at me for the first time in an hour.

"It's not all bad though, is it? That's the real problem. There's just enough good to keep you coming back."

"You lost me, what are you talking about?" By this time my head was swimming. The alcohol and the stress were weighing me down. I was still thinking clearly, but more slowly than before.

"Sex. It's not all bad. When it's good, it's really good."

"That's the truth. What was the best for you?" After I said it, I realized that she may take the question the wrong way. I wasn't making a pass, and I wasn't looking for a cheap thrill. I just wanted to know. She gave me a hard look, and then seemed to sense what I was thinking. Her faced softened back to the slack of intoxication and she smiled again, more sincere.

"Oh, it was in high school, a week or two before I graduated. I was brought up really strict and was never allowed to go out with boys alone. But my friend wanted to see me that night, and I snuck out to meet him. We didn't even fuck that night. We went and lay in the woods and kissed for a long time. I just remember feeling hot all over. It took him a long time to work up the nerve to reach between my legs, and by that time I was so wet my panties were making a dark spot through my skirt. He slipped his finger under the fabric and in me and then he just froze, like he didn't know what else to do. I didn't care, I was so worked up I just came. It was the first time I had ever done it with someone else around. I was so embarrassed I got up and ran home. He didn't talk to me again until graduation. I'll never forget that feeling that everything was fresh and new. On top of it all I felt guilty for doing something I was always told was dirty. It was like a little rebellion, but in a good way, you know?"

"Yeah, I guess I do."

She was still wearing that dreamy look, and I could tell that remembering that story had had an effect on her. The t-shirt she was wearing wasn't nearly as thick as I thought it was and I could see the outline of her nipples hard and dark underneath. The gap of her sarong had slipped between her legs. I could see her whole thigh. It was firm and tan and the muscles moved beneath the surface as she twitched her foot. It was all quite a sight, and in the space of a single breath, I was hard as a rock. I moved a bit so my erection wasn't as visible, but I know she still saw. She moved the skirt in a half hearted gesture to cover her leg, but ignored it when it slipped back down.

"Alright, tough guy," she said. Her voice was huskier and a bit clearer than it was a moment ago. "What was your best moment?"

My mind raced. I thought about all the women I had known and the things I had seen. The ones that were meaningful and the ones that were meaningless all lined up to take their turn in my consciousness. Finally, in some dark corner I felt something shift and fall into the light. It was the name of a girl that I had not thought of in far too long. With the name came the rest of her, and I told my tale.

"Her name was Anna. I met her when I was working a job in Cabo San Marco. She was a good Catholic woman, very devout. I used to see her come and go from the market and the church. After a while she started to notice me too, and she put a little extra swing in her hip for my benefit. Any other woman I've ever known who tried to do that would've looked cheap. With her it was just a way to increase my awareness of her body and her desire.

"I'll never know why she picked me, but she did. Maybe it was because I wasn't from her village and I was different. Maybe I was just sport. She approached me one day in the market square, and told me in excellent English that I should come to her house at nine o'clock for dinner. It was not a question or a command. She was just stating fact."

Carrie rolled a bit to watch me more fully while I told the story. When she turned she spilled a bit of red wine on the ancient couch. She made a half hearted attempt to brush it off, but only succeeded in moving her wrap enough for me to see between her legs. She was a natural red head. The hair was thin and I saw a bit of moist glisten on her pussy. She blushed deep red and adjusted her skirt to cover everything properly again. Her skin was flushed from what I could see of her breasts, all the way to her face. I could feel my pants begin to get tighter.

"When I got to her house, she was dressed for a comfortable evening. Everything she wore was made of unbleached cotton that looked soft and comfortable. I felt very silly in my dark suit. We talked and ate and drank sangria that was sweet enough to make your teeth hurt. From the moment I walked in, I knew we would sleep together. It was just a matter of being polite to go through the rest of it.

"After we ate, she simply got up and turned to walk to the bed room. She dropped her shirt and her slacks along the way, and never looked back to see if I was following her, she just knew. It's hard to describe how it was with us. I guess the best explanation was that she was confident, and mature and completely uninhibited. She used me in a way that insured her own pleasure as well as mine. Her whole body smelled of cinnamon, and the cheap wine made me dizzy. It was like a dream of sorts, I guess. When she came there were no theatrics, just a few short gasps and a tightening of her muscles that was so hard, it almost hurt. By then we were both sweaty and tired, and she held me against her all night. In the morning, she made me breakfast, pressed my shirt and walked me to the door. She never even looked in my direction again while I was there. I guess it was so special because there was nothing contrived about it."

"God, that sounds hot," She said, looking exactly like what she was. She was an animal that was aroused and drunk and I was the focus of all that attention. It made me uncomfortable, but before I could excuse myself and go to my room, she began talking again. "You know, that's what was missing in my relationship with Gary, confidence. Even when it was good, I always felt like I was just a temporary part of his life. Sometimes he would fuck me and roll over asleep so fast I wasn't exactly sure when he had stopped. It's like reading a book and suddenly realizing you can't remember what you just read. I would lay there and touch myself to finish it off, and listen to him snore. He wasn't even a foot away from me and I was still so alone. Some nights it was a toss up to see if I would come or cry or both, but either way it was silent so I wouldn't wake him. I wish that son of a bitch was dead."

"The world would probably be better off, Carrie," I said. "It's late and we're both drunk and I should get some sleep. Good night."

With that she sat up and took off her t-shirt. Her breasts were larger than I would have guessed. They looked soft and warm, inviting. Her knees spread to reveal that wonderful red hair again. The smell of her suffused the room and there was no doubt what she was offering. It would be quick, and memorable, and in the morning we would both make up excuses of why it happened and promise not to tell her cousin. But, I just couldn't do it. It would have left me feeling vulgar and old.

I got up and crossed to her, she smiled. I reached down and kissed her on the forehead like a sister.

"Good night, Carrie. I'll see you in the morning." There was a momentary look of total surprise, and then her face turned ugly.

"You bastard," she screamed in an accent intensified by drink. I made it in the bedroom door before I heard the glass shatter behind me. The reputation of her temper was legend in some circles.

You see, that's how it happens some times. Sometimes you just go to bed and leave the girl on the couch, or maybe she leaves you. Sometimes you sleep together and sometimes you don't, but either way sometimes you regret it. Most of the time, it just doesn't matter.

She left a few minutes after I got up the next morning. She hasn't said three words to me since.

***

Yes, this is another true one. I saw her at a party this weekend, and she was with Gary again. Somehow, I knew that would happen. As much as my body told me to sleep with her that night, I had other things to think about, and it would have made me feel ugly. I guess it's just hard to explain. I would love to hear from anybody with a comment. Good or bad.

Ever since I sat down to write this, I have had this quote running through my head. It may or may not really fit the story, but it's part of the story for me. So, in the interest of being honest I've decided to include it.

"Reality is in the enduring eyes, the unspoken dreadful accusation in the enduring eyes of a young woman who looks at you, and hopes for nothing… I let her out and noticed a small and touching thing. Despite all her wounds and dejections, her dancers step was so firm and light and quick as to give a curious imitation of joy." ---Macdonald, 1964

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