tagIncest/TabooThe Falls

The Falls

byclearwinston©

"Hey, turd!"

"Shut up, Bucky!"

I didn't even turn around. I could hear the smile in her voice and I smiled in my reply, but continued cleaning the fuel intake on the lawnmower, my hands submerged in the solvent as I scrubbed at it with my thumbs.

My cousin was right behind me now and she reached forward to smack my elbow in an attempt to cause me to drop the small motor part on the workbench. "What's that?" she asked.

"Fuel intake for the tractor," I answered.

"Do you know what you're doing?" she smiled.

"Rarely," I said, smiling back up at her. Her brown eyes sparkled, her dark hair pulled back in a ponytail. "How you doing, Becky? Good to see you."

"Good to see you, too, cuz." She wrapped her arm around my shoulder and pulled herself in close to give me a hug. I tilted my head toward her and gave her a kiss on the cheek since my hands were busy, plus I was covered in yard grime and sweat, with a hint of gasoline. "Need a hand?" she asked, letting go.

"Sure."

She started clapping.

I laughed. "You're such a dork."

She laughed and asked what I needed. I asked her to grab one of the red shop towels from the pile and lay it flat on the workbench, next to the tub. She put it on there like I asked and I set the fuel intake on it before grabbing another towel to wipe my hands down. I dried the fuel intake with the air compressor and Becky helped me re-attach it to the motor. I primed it and started the riding mower and it ran like a dream, not sputtering like it had been before.

"Now what?" she yelled as I revved the engine.

"What?!" I yelled, cupping my ear.

"Now what?!" she yelled, louder and slower.

"No thanks! I already ate!" I shouted, waving.

She just made a face and gave me the finger.

I backed the engine down to idol and said, "I've got to hook up the trailer and pick up all the branches that fell, and pile them up in the woods."

"Let's go," she said, jumping onto the lawnmower and dropping onto my lap.

Well, that was unexpected. My cousin Becky was obviously outgoing and lighthearted. We'd been almost best friends since we were kids. Only a few months apart in age, both of us now eighteen, we spent most of our time together when our families would get together a few times a year, plus all the phone calls, e-mails, and instant messaging we would do. Most of her comments to any of my posts were sarcastic and funny, but that was Becky.

Did I mention that she's hot? Because she is. She used to be cute, then she grew up and became hot. Even when she was little and had a severe overbite (that's why I started calling her Bucktooth Becky, which quickly got shortened to Bucky), she was cute. She's one of those people that skimmed right through what is often called the "awkward phase." She never had that. I had that, but she didn't.

And now, here she was, sitting on my lap in her Daisy Dukes, tank top and flip-flops. "Come on," she said, gripping the steering wheel and bouncing on my lap as she turned to look at me with a big smile. "Let's go. Time's a wastin'."

The tractor lurched forward as I controlled the pedals while I let Becky steer. I looked over her shoulder, telling her where to go while I kept my hands on her trim waist. She squealed and laughed when we jerked forward, falling backward into my chest, but she quickly regained her composure and steered us toward the shed in the back, where I hooked the yard trailer onto the lawnmower and asked if she wanted to drive.

"Really?" she asked. "I don't know."

"Sure." I showed her the controls and told her just to keep it in the low gear. I walked over to the pile I had already started, Becky driving beside me, smiling the whole time. I told her how to turn it off and she cut the engine.

"That was fun!" she said. I told you she was lighthearted. She hopped off the tractor and we began picking up the branches I had piled up, and tossed them into the trailer. We talked as we worked, moving around the large yard, creating piles in different areas so Becky could drive to each pile.

"What have you been up to since graduation?" she asked.

"Nothing much. Trying to get some money saved for college. Mostly doing lawns and stuff."

"Do you like it? Make good money?"

"I do like it. I don't think I want to do it long-term, but it pays well, and I can choose when I want to work; that way I'm not working all summer, but can still go out, relax, that kind of stuff."

"Cool. Are you still going out with what's her name?"

"Cara? No, we broke up."

"What happened?"

"Just didn't work out," I shrugged, still picking up branches. Honestly, I didn't want to talk about it.

"Who broke it off?"

"She did."

Becky muttered something.

"What?"

She stood straight up and turned to look at me. "I said she's an idiot."

"You don't know the whole story," I said.

"I don't have to." She dropped her branches in the trailer as she walked over to me. "You forget, I know you. I know what kind of guy you are. I've seen you at your best and at your worst. I say if she can't appreciate you for who you are, good riddance."

"Becky," I started to object.

"What, Steve?" Her arms were crossed and she had one eyebrow raised as if challenging me to try and change her mind.

"Nothing," I sighed.

She frowned and said, "One day, you're going to find someone who is going to love you the way you deserve." With that, she turned and walked back to pick up more branches and sticks.

I watched her walk away and thought, "Maybe one day I'll find someone like you." I returned to my task. We were loading our second-to-last pile into the trailer when my aunt Brenda, Becky's mom, stuck her head out the back door and yelled that lunch was ready.

"Go ahead!" I waved. "We'll be in, in a few minutes!" She waved and turned to walk back into the house.

"What are we doing after lunch?" Becky asked me.

"I don't know," I said. "I haven't really thought about it."

"Want to go to the falls?"

I shrugged, "Sure."

She smiled at me. "Sweet! Hey, I wonder if that rope swing is still there."

"It was last year."

"I remember," she frowned, rubbing her ass.

"Oh, yeah! I forgot!" I was laughing and she started laughing with me. Last year she had slipped off the rope, fortunately while we were still high up on the hill, dropped about four feet onto the dirt, and scraped her butt as she skidded along the dirt and rock. She was okay, of course, but it could have been really bad, had she let go later into the swing, over the big drop-off.

We finished dumping the branches and Becky sat on my lap, steering, as I drove the lawnmower back to the shed, unhooked the trailer and parked the mower. "Thanks for your help, Becky. I really appreciate it."

"Glad to help," she smiled. "More time at the falls."

"That'll be nice."

We ate lunch with our parents. Becky's older brother, Doug, Jr. (we called him DJ), was working. He had just graduated college, so with his new job he didn't feel like he could ask off. My little brother Spencer was at summer camp, leaving Becky, me, and our parents alone this week. That was fine with me. Like I had already said, Becky and I usually spent most of our time together anyway because we were the only ones even remotely close in age. Our parents would think nothing of us taking off for the day; in fact, they would likely break out the cards, sit on the screened porch, playing and drinking beer, a tradition they had continued since as far back as I could remember.

"We're going out for seafood tonight," said Mom. "We're going to leave at around seven so you need to be back in plenty of time."

"Yes, ma'am," I said.

As Becky walked into the living room, she was wearing the same clothes she had been wearing before, only this time I could see the ties of her swimsuit sticking up around her neck. Of course she looked amazing. We loaded a cooler with some of the sodas from the garage refrigerator, grabbed some chips and bean dip, and loaded into my truck. When we got to the end of the long dirt road, we knew we had to walk about a half a mile to get to the falls and while we knew that other people knew about it, we had never actually seen anyone there. It took a lot of effort to get to it and we had actually found out about it by accident, listening to a couple of older teens talking about it when we went to get shakes at the sandwich shop a few years ago. When I was old enough to drive, we searched for it, found it, and noted how to get there. We've been back several times since then.

As we walked down the trail to the falls, Becky started asking me about Cara again. I decided to just let the story unfold as I talked, knowing Becky would be sympathetic, but also would tell me when I was doing something stupid. I had always been able to get her input about girls and sometimes she would ask me about boys. I was the closest thing to a girl friend she had, she would say. I would always roll my eyes and say, "Thanks a lot," before she would laugh. For my sixteenth birthday, she even got me a manicure kit with several colors of nail polish, laughing loudly as I looked at it. The rest of the family laughed, too, but not to the extent she did. Later on, however, she gave me my "real" present: a runner's watch. I loved and still wear it to this day.

"So she got mad that you didn't buy her more things?" asked Becky, incredulous.

"I wouldn't say that. I mean, maybe, but I don't have that kind of money. I took care of her the best I knew how, but I guess that wasn't enough for her."

"Steve, you've got a good heart, and you're a good-looking guy. You're funny, smart, hard-working, confident. . . One day, you'll have some horny young thing wrapped around your finger," she smiled. "Who knows? Maybe you already do and just don't know it."

"Maybe," I said. "What about you? What's the latest?"

"Randy?" she asked. "Dickhead bounced after graduation. He said he couldn't go to college already in a relationship. Something about clipping his wings so he can't flyyyy, or something. Have you ever tried to watch a chicken fly? They kind of jump and flail. That's how I see him trying to flyyyyyy." She ran awkwardly, lifting her knees high and flapping her arms awkwardly as she described it. "He don't know a damned thing about women."

She had me laughing as she loped down the trail before stopping to wait for me. "Come on, slow poke!" she called.

"Hey, I'm the one carrying the cooler and all the crap. Probably so you can flyyyyy," I mocked.

She put her hands on her hips and made a face. "I thought you wanted to be a gentleman. Maybe I need to teach you a thing or two about how to treat a lady."

"Well, maybe one day I'll meet a lady. I'll let you know."

"Hey!" She tried to look offended, but ended up laughing at me. When I got to her, she took the towels off my shoulders and the blanket off my arm and carried them. It didn't help much because they weren't heavy or awkward, but it was nice that she shared the load.

It wasn't long before we were at the edge of the little pool where the water fall fell about fifteen feet over the edge of the rock into the clear green water. We dropped our stuff on a rock at the edge of the pool and I walked down to the sandbar to feel the water. It was warm and I called up to Becky how great it felt.

I walked back up off the sand bar and I turned to round the boulder, stopping dead in my tracks. Becky was bent over in front of me, facing away, her lean legs and bubbly ass right in my view. Her bikini was a hot pink, fairly modest for a bikini, but on her frame, with her bent over, it was stretched tight across her backside. She stood up and turned toward me with a big smile on her face.

"What do you think?" she asked, her arms out to the sides. "I just got it."

"It's. . . uh. . . nice."

"Nice?" she asked, her hands on her hips. "That's not exactly what I was going for."

"Pretty?" I asked. She just scowled. I swallowed hard. "Sexy?" I croaked.

She smiled and relaxed. "Are you asking or telling?"

"Telling. It's sexy."

"THAT's what I was going for," she said, pointing at me. "So, thank you." She walked toward me. "So it's warm, then?" she asked.

"Yeah."

"Well, come on, then." I took off my shirt as she walked toward the sandbar. We had to wade in from this side because it was so shallow. The waterfall was directly across from us and the rope swing was at the far end, where the water was still deep from the stirring water of the falls.

I followed Becky into the water until it was at the top of our legs, then she dove in, coming back up a few feet further out before standing chest deep in the crystal pool. "This is nice," she said with a smile. "Come on in." I dove in and stayed low before I heard her squeal when I grabbed her legs. I surfaced right next to her, only to be assaulted with a series of punches on my arm and splashes of water as she laughed and called me names.

"I give up!" I cried, laughing as I tried to keep my back to her so I could breathe without taking a mouthful of water. She stopped splashing me and I turned around to see her smiling as she kicked away toward the center of the pool.

"Come on," she said, "Let's jump off the falls."

"Okay." I followed her over as she swam leisurely toward the bank by the falls side. I climbed out first and helped her on the slick rocks. She ended up holding onto my hand the whole time, which was fine with me. I have to admit that I felt butterflies in my stomach at her touch and tried to brush it off. She was my cousin and my best girl friend. Probably my best friend of anyone, but she was still my cousin.

When I helped her up to the flat surface of the top rock by the falls, she squeezed my hand and smiled. "See?" she said, "There's a gentleman in there." She poked lightly at my chest as she said it.

"And you really are a lady. I'm sorry about what I said earlier."

She rolled her eyes. "Don't go getting soft on me. I didn't take it seriously." She winked, "I know you better than that."

I nodded and said, "I'm still going to go first, right? So I can be there for you?"

"Yep."

I walked to the edge. This always seemed like more than 15 feet to me. Of course I don't like heights, so that could have something to do with it. I stood there for just a few seconds before Becky blurted out, "Don't be a pussy; jump already." I turned and gave her a look.

"I'm checking for sharks."

She just smirked at me. I turned around, counted to five (yes, it was supposed to be to three) in my head and jumped into the water, surfacing a moment later and giving Becky a thumb's up. "No sharks!" I called. "Come on in!"

"Good to know! GERONIMOOOOOOO!!" She jumped in and pulled into a cannonball at the last second, creating a huge splash and resounding thud as she smacked into the water. It hurt me just to hear it.

She popped up out of the water. "OOOWWWW!" she laughed. "Damn, that hurt!" She could hardly contain her laughter and it had me laughing just as hard as we tread water.

"You want to go again?"

"Yes. I'm not as big of a pussy as you are."

"Probably," I shrugged.

We swam to the edge and she got out before I did. I cracked up again, bringing a look of surprise from Becky. "What?" she asked.

I pointed to her back and tried to regain some composure. "Your back and ass are totally red."

She laughed a little and touched her butt, cupping it in both hands. "It's hot," she laughed. "Now you know I'm not lying. That cannonball hurt!" She rubbed her ass for a second before sticking it out at me. She pulled her bikini down to the bottom of her cheeks and stuck it out at me. "Want to kiss it and make it better?"

I suddenly stopped laughing. Here was my hot cousin wiggling her bare ass at me, asking me to kiss it. She started laughing before pulling her bikini bottom back up. I tried to look normal and laughed a little as I waded to the shore where she was climbing the rocks again.

We jumped a few more times, laughing and goofing off before Becky said she was getting hungry. We swam across to the sandbar and walked around the boulder to where our cooler, blanket, and towels were. Becky opened the bean dip and chips while I spread out the blanket and laid our towels on it. We sat down on the blanket, letting the sun dry us as we talked and ate.

"When do you leave for school?" Becky asked.

"August 12th. Orientation."

"Oh. That's only like five more weeks," she pouted.

"I know. When do you leave?"

"August 26th. After this week, do you think we'll see each other again?"

"Of course. We're family."

"I guess," she shrugged.

"You don't think we'll see each other?"

"I don't know. I mean, look at DJ. He's out of school now and trying to get his career started, so he's not here. And this isn't the first time, either. He's missed a lot of stuff, between school and his internships, and his girlfriend. I'm just thinking that when college starts, our adult life will take over and we'll see each other less and less." She started choking up and her eyes turned red.

"Hey," I said, wrapping her in a hug, "I'm going to make it a point to keep you in my life as much as possible."

"Yeah?"

"Yeah. You're my best friend, and I love you more than anyone."

"I love you more than anyone, too," she said, squeezing me tighter. I pulled back after a moment and kissed her on the cheek. She smiled and I wiped a tear off her cheek with my thumb. She looked so beautiful just then. Of course she always was, but my heart melted for her in that moment. I leaned in and gently kissed her on the cheek again, this time a little closer to her mouth. When we pulled back she gazed into my eyes, but took a quick glance at my lips before looking back into my eyes.

I wanted to kiss her again, but this time she leaned forward and met my lips with her own. The kiss was tentative and gentle. She placed one hand gently on my bare knee and her tongue grazed my upper lip. "I love you," she whispered.

"I love you, too, Becks."

She pulled back a little. "No, Steve."

She didn't get a chance to finish her thought before I nodded my agreement. "I know what you mean, and I mean I really love you, Becky."

She smiled a little. "Like you love Cara?"

"I could never love her the way I love you."

She threw her arms around my neck and planted a kiss on my lips again. I wrapped her in my arms and we kissed like lovers. For the first time, like lovers. I loved her. I think at that moment I realized I had loved her for a long time, but I could never admit it, even to myself, because she was my cousin.

Oh, shit. She's my cousin.

"Becky," I said, pulling away. "I can't. . ."

"Yes, we can," she smiled. "We're only cousins."

"Only cousins?" I laughed. "That's enough!"

She shrugged. "Maybe. But I've been thinking about this, Steve. I've loved you for a long time. A couple of years ago, I got curious and looked online. In a lot of states, including this one, first cousins can even get a marriage license."

"Marriage? Whoa, Becky."

"I'm not saying that," she laughed. "I'm just saying. . . you know. . . even the law sees that these things happen." She shrugged and smiled a little.

I leaned back and ran my hand through my hair, letting out a deep breath. "This is weird," I said.

She looked sad. "Steve?"

I smiled at her and took her hand. "Don't worry, Becky. It doesn't change the way I feel about you. I just have to think through some things."

"I've been thinking about things, too. A lot." She broke a pine needle into tiny pieces as she talked. "I know that we're cousins, Steve, and that adds a challenge." She shrugged. "Maybe it even means we can't be together. If that's true, I get it. It just means so much to me to know that you feel the same way about me that I do about you." She looked up at me and smiled, then sighed. "But the question is, what can I do about it? I mean, I love you so much and I'm so happy that you love me, too. But there's so much to think about."

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