Wounded at being divorced by the treacherous bastard she'd stupidly married, and now possessing half of their combined declared assets while knowing he had undeclared hidden assets but decided to let that be, Boston-born Geneva Beggs returned to America to hide in the hope she could recover and become happy again.
Geneva recognized half of the guiltless parties in such collapsed marriages would feel like she did, not that she felt any better in acknowledging that.
She had her passport and name on other official documents changed from Beggs to her maiden name of Graham and in London and transferred her bank accounts to the Bank of America, nominating her branch.
Geneva Graham arrived in Asheville, in in Blue Ridge Mountains in western North Carolina, where her late mother had been born, determined to resume her life on her own terms.
Two days after arriving she leased a two-bedroom apartment in Lexington Ave and, with that done, could almost feel the cloud lift from her.
Geneva worked to regain her 'lost' accent from living abroad to try to fit in better in this more conservative neck of the woods. Well as least the female real estate leasing agent hadn't asked was she English.
With some of her $3.76 million in cash already invested in American stocks and a beach house in a gated community in Florida, the forty-two year old was self-sufficient and decided not to seek work, at least not for a while.
Already two women on the same floor of the apartment block had called to welcome her and Geneva deeply considered that as being homely. The apartment was furnished and she'd arrived with only two carry bags. Her personal effects were in storage in England and would remain there until she relocated to Denver in possibly a year's time.
That afternoon Geneva purchased an Apple Mac 15-inch laptop computer plus printer and back home pulled out the memory stick containing the first eleven chapters of a planned 35-chapter novel with the working title of ' Runaway Drug Heiress'.
Geneva had a masters in English Lit gained in Boston. When in London on a working vacation immediately after leaving college, she was employed by a publishing company and began writing this novel at nights. But when one of the partners, a childless widower, became inflated with her, she ceased writing and didn't resume it after marriage because working and looking after him kept her fully occupied.
The asshole became infatuated with other young women and eventually the penny dropped and Geneva realized he'd married her to be his housekeeper and he blatantly admitted that when confronted.
Her work became her consuming interest and she left her husband largely to his own interests. After nine very unspectacular years of their marriage Charles came to her asking for a divorce because he'd met someone else. Geneva hired a top divorce solicitor and gained a satisfactory exit with a barrow load of cash.
The marriage ended disastrously for both of them (the girlfriend left Charles when she learned how much of his assets the departing wife would exit with) but Geneva had to admit to herself the sex, when she'd managed to get it, had been great but like most women she'd also desired other things from a marriage.
Setting up the computer and establishing the wireless connection to the printer, Geneva read and later watched early evening news while eating an omelet and then returned to working on her draft novel after a two-year break. Only when stopping work at 1:30 did she yawn and say, "Jesus I'm a night writer by choice."
When at a book and stationery supplies store early next morning, Geneva was served by the female proprietor who apologized for the delay for service.
"I'm down two assistants including the woman who managed incoming books and stocking the shelves."
"That must be tough for you," Geneva said.
"Tougher than you think honey because I go home to a husband and two sloth-like teens, but so far I haven yet seen many would-be customers throw their hands in the air and walk out."
"Are you advertising for replacement people?"
"Yes and what a wonderful way to meet deadbeats," the woman said bitterly.
"I could work part-time, 9:00 to 2:00 but would have to leave at 2:00, until you get a permanent replacement. I worked all summer in a bookstore in Boston when an undergraduate and worked for two years in London as an assistant editor for a publisher."
"Omigod, I'm Thelma Cousins. Could you help out and start right now?"
Geneva laughed and said she'd fetch her references before being interviewed.
"That won't be necessary. Incoming stock is piling up at the back and you would have seen the empty shelves. There's no charge for this travel book on Queensland, Australia and this printer paper. Are you writing?"
"Omigod my day is made. My mother will arrive to work behind the counter from 11:00 till closing. I can see daylight."
Geneva introduced herself and was taken to the storeroom as soon as the line-up of customers had cleared.
And so the weekday arrangement of convenience for both women began.
As Geneva returned from placing a carton of new magazines in the racks, Thelma arrived with an attractive woman of thirty-two, Geneva's age.
"Geneva this is Kitty Kennedy, floor manager at a pharmacy from just up the street. She knows about unpacking stock and checking off against invoices and pulling out damaged stock and recording missing items. I went to university with her boss and their initial morning rush is over and yes she can help out till 2:00 each day. Keith will get off his butt and perform her supervisory role of pharmacy staff."
Geneva and Kitty said hi and hugged and the three women laughed when Geneva said, "Wow Thelma, you found yourself in deep crap and have dug your way out of it brilliantly."
Thelma later complimented the two women for what they'd achieved in under four hours and when Kitty left Geneva asked if she could make a suggestion and Geneva listened and agreed to allow a selection of books supplied with the tag of 'possible hot sellers' to be displayed near the entrance alongside best-selling titles.
"I'll get a sign made for the stand but it can't be possible hot sellers because that's a big negative for browsers."
Geneva suggested 'Titles on the Rise'.
"Yes we'll run with that," Thelma said, hugging Geneva and thanking her again. "I'd like you to come home to lunch on Saturday. My sister manages the store at weekends."
Geneva accepted that thought two invitations in one day... Kitty had invited her to dinner on Sunday. Her social life was rocketing! She went home, showered and napped till 6:00 and went to a Thai restaurant and returned home and began her alternative role of night writer.
* * *
Lunch at Thelma's was more or less lunch with Thelma because nothing Geneva said to the 14-year old daughter and son of almost sixteen appeared to interest them, Gregg the husband answered her politely and spent a lot of his time glancing at Geneva's breasts and as soon as eating was done the kids were off to visit friends and Gregg was off to watch TV on sport. Not one of them cleared anything from the table.
Geneva thought Thelma would be better off dumping the lot of them.
"Ah they've gone and we have peace and can enjoy a good chat," Geneva sighed. "I'll make coffee soon."
God Thelma was lonely despite living with a husband and two kids! Geneva thought Thelma would really love setting off to work and chatting to customers about books and the price of printer inks.
Next evening Geneva wasn't sure if Kitty's husband Philip had glanced at her breasts; god was Kitty married to a gay guy. But Kitty's brother Brody Duke arrived unexpectedly and Brody appeared half-stunned by Geneva's auburn hair and face and perhaps her body and when he glanced at her boobs his eyes bulged a little.
O-m-i-g-o-d she thought, darling Kitty had invited the hunk to dinner in the hope he'd shaft her new friend Geneva who appeared to be running on empty, to put it politely.
Geneva moved positively to avoid disappointing Kitty.
"Hi Brody, omigod do you work out?"
He flushed with pleasure.
"Yeah a little. I came out of the Army two months ago at the end of a posting to the Middle East. Apart from dodging abuse and driving aimlessly about on patrols, there wasn't a great lot to do on our peace-keeping duty but to read or play in the sand or to wait to use equipment in the gym."
"You missed out women and booze?"
"Over there both could be lethal," he smiled and stared at her boobs until she blushed. He looked away grinning.
Geneva squeezed her thighs together as if concerned he was about to jump her. Her hunger for sex soared and she felt the happiest she'd been since she legally dumping the jerk she'd married.
But would he want to have sex with her?
Geneva realized Kitty and Philip had left them alone and she took a risk completely out of character and said to Brody, "Show me your chest."
He looked surprised and looked to see if they were still alone.
"Okay providing you show me yours."
She ran her tongue out over her top lip for a fraction of a second but was certain that had been long enough for him to have spotted.
"No not here. Chances of discovery are too great."
"Well it could throw Philip but Kitty is broad-minded. I'll take you home later."
"Thanks, I'd like that."
Philip brought in two beers and looking puzzled said to Geneva, "Kitty said she'd get you a drink and wants you in the kitchen."
Kitty grabbed Geneva by the hands and Geneva thought wow, this friendship was advancing quickly.
Geneva hesitated thinking surely Kitty hadn't expected her to hit on her brother as quickly as she had done.
Kitty said, "I'd told him to hit on you quickly."
Relieved of that embarrassment, Geneva smiled. "He offered to take me home after we finish here and I accepted."
"Oh great. You will be missing sex after your marital break-up and my girlfriends say Brody is great at it. Oh god what am I saying?"
"It's okay and I think you are very sweet to have my interests at heart. I feel I've known you for zonks."
"Me too. We are destined to be great friends."
Inside the apartment Brody removed his jacket and then his shirt as Geneva watched, almost breathlessly. She felt her nipples firm and the bud of her clit was sending her electrical impulses as if urging her to do something.
Brody's chest was tanned and as smooth as a baby's bottom.
Well that was an oft-used phrase in 20th century English literature.
"Your chest is handsome."
He looked surprised and asked "Handsome?"
"Yes it can be used in that sense although rarely is. For example, George Eliot in her novel 'Silas Marner' wrote Squire Cass lived in the large red house a handsome flight of stone steps."
He ignored that explanation and said, "Stroke my chest."
"I will if you pass this test: Who is or who was George Eliot."
"Easy, I remember that from high school. That was the pen name of a woman writer in Victorian times although I can't recall her name."
Geneva stroked his chest slowly, not looking at him and then lay the side of her face against the rise to a nipple and waggled her eye-lashes to brush the skin.
Brody pulled up her head gently and they kissed softly. As she withdraw he said, "Now it's my turn to see your chest."
He looked mutinously at her, searching her green eyes.
"Not unless you undress me."
He leered and sprang forward and clasping her in his arms pulled down the zip at the back of her dress and with practiced ease undid the two hooks of her bra.
Brody pulled down the black velvet dress to Geneva's waist, Geneva cooperating to free her arms then then he pulled up her pink, lacy bra and began licking one of the firm, blemish-free and mid-sized breasts.
"Nice tit," he said slurping.
She looked down giggling.
"Well you fuck me kind sir?"
"Yeah providing you have condoms."
And they did it.
The sight of Brody's large dick that bent towards the end made Geneva think of an offensive war weapon and frightening through made her weak at the knees. She sank towards the floor but her descent to the carpet was halted momentarily as the artful seducer scooped her dress and panties over her hips.
God, she thought, if he couldn't fuck well she'd be astounded.
She wasn't astounded.
Geneva lay on her back and lifted her legs to ease the removal of her dress and panties and then Mr Goodfellow or rather Brody Duke sank his face into her groin. Her eyes rolled up grotesquely and she groaned from deep within her core, or so she fancied that's where that primeval sound originated.
He didn't finish her off, but left her cunt extra-well lubed and she was practically panting for it as she scurried off to fetch some condoms.
Back on the floor and panting, Geneva propped on an elbow to watch the offensive weapon of war slide into her trench and she went ahhhhhh. She slowly pushed him off her, although his long dick connected in her and she raised a leg high and smiled and said, "Fuck me."
They finally collapsed into a heap, his cum sticking to her breasts and belly and he was sweating, thankfully more than she was.
"God what a marathon," she yawned, "but it was truly great. I feel totally fucked."
"Yeah well I would be troubled proceeding with Round 2 right now," he admitted manfully as they both stared at his limp and sticky cock.
"So I am to get more?" she asked hopefully.
"God yes," he leered. "You are an exceptionally good fuck."
When sufficiently recovered, Geneva fetched two glasses of juice and food for him and took him to bed.
Brody rose, showered and dressed and kissed her goodbye just after 5:00 next afternoon and he looked exhausted. He smiled and said, "As I praised you last night, you are an exceptionally good fuck."
Brady returned like a dog to a good bone for the next four nights and then lost interest in Geneva although they continue to occasionally see each other socially. Geneva wasn't unduly sorry to lose him because he had rather too much horsepower sexually for her comfort. But he'd made a huge contribution to her life, driving away the remnants of her lack of confidence.
She continued at the bookshop on weekdays and lunched everyday with Kitty who agreed with her it appeared that Brody had lost interest in Geneva.
"Should I talk to him?"
"Yeah well I agree with that. It's not practical to try to turn a guy back on. If you get horny and no guy is around, give me a call."
They looked at one another and giggled when Geneva said to Kitty, "You must have had a wild time at college."
But she also clasped Kitty's hand and squeezed and said thanks for the offer. "You have become a dear friend to me Kitty."
Kitty gave Geneva a grateful look in response to that declaration of friendship and that made Geneva think, oh no, not another lonely woman despite having a husband. Well it was difficult for some women to make close friends and to keep working on such relationships when holding down a job and then going home to their second job.
Thelma finally found the experienced woman she wanted to manage book stocking and handle enquiries and had to declare Geneva redundant.
"I'm sorry," Thelma said, almost weeping.
But Geneva presented a cheerful smile and said she wasn't, that the work had been a useful stepping stone in the rebuilding of her life.
"It's time I moved on Thelma. I came here to regain emotional stability and that had occurred and you assisted in that, more substantially than what you might think because it helped get me back into routines and through adjustments arising from that I found I'm a night writer. I actually write better at night and in daytime. I have no idea why that is so but suspect I become more reflective when the city winds down amid darkness. I have had weekends off work but still write at nights."
Geneva handed in her notice of termination of occupancy of the apartment and there was no financial penalty because the management company had a number of people on the waiting list. The parting with Kitty was tearful, excruciatingly beautiful Geneva thought, much like a parting of lovers although they'd not touched in that manner but had developed a similar intimacy. It was so tragic.
But once on the flight to Denver, Geneva accepted Kitty was substantially a person belonging to her past although she was quite sure they'd meet again but briefly. The problem was in going to Denver was she would have to restart from scratch because she knew no one there. Then why go to Denver? Geneva smiled.'
She'd often based important decisions on instinct rather than logic or emotion. Emotion was something one felt whereas instinct was simple a thought from nowhere that arrived unexpectedly and had an air of urgency or compulsiveness to it. Although an instinctive though could be ignored there were times when Geneva chose not to do so. During her despair in England during the marital breakup Geneva had the thought she should go to Denver and that went back to sleep thinking of the mountains of Colorado. That's all there was to it.
But at school when she stumbled on a question during a test or exam, she often had a flash thought and would seize that. Often but not always it produced the correct answer.
Then going to college, after listening to the urgings of her student advisor that she should consider taking a science degree course had enrolled for a BSc but at the last minute changed to English Lit. Why? Because the thought came she would be one who'd succeeded as a novelist.
She had a position lined up with a publishing house for when she finished college but opted out of that when the thought came she should tour Europe as part of her finishing education by gaining some experience of foreign cultures. She began that odyssey in Turkey and that certainly had been a cultural shock. She met and traveled here and there with other students and became skilled in bus travel sex. That wasn't a skill her mom would be proud to hear about but how many novelists knew anything about bus sex? Or knew that young people who toured internationally thought that bus sex was simply something more advanced that from-bus photography? The adjustment in thinking as the result of foreign travel had quite astonished Geneva.
Her odyssey had meant to finish in France but she never got there, at least not initially. Geneva began touring Ireland, crossed into Scotland and entered England via Wales. When in London she saw the headquarters of the parent company she'd intended working for in New York. She called the HR person she'd dealt with in America and the woman arranged to send the electronic copy of Geneva's application documents and her notes of her interview of Geneva to the HR department in London overnight and next morning Geneva went to that HR department.
And why had Geneva bothered to do that, terrifying her mother she'd never see her daughter again and annoying her father who had arranged two promising jobs for her in Boston? Because being surprised to be standing looking up at the company's name on that building, Geneva had the thought she should try to get a job there.
Was that decision to seek that job in London successful or unsuccessful? In Geneva's view it was still too early to decide. She began a career that would help her tremendously as a hopeful novelist. She worked and lived in a truly multi-cultural society. She ended up in a disastrous married tainting her as 'used goods', a divorcee at barely thirty-two, but she had come home battered and disillusioned -- again great experience for a novelist -- and clutching (figuratively) $3.76 million.
Instinct of course was only just one influence in change in her life. It was chance she'd entered that bookshop in North Carolina and chance that she'd met Kitty who'd introduce her to Kitty's brother who'd delivered the most exhilarating sex of Geneva's adult life. Because of all of history, Geneva was confident her instinctive thought to settle in Denver would be the right one. She'd already leased an apartment off the Internet and had purchased and beautiful small holiday home in Florida to give her beach living contrast to big-city living whenever she required a breather.