tagLoving WivesThe Game

The Game


Greg looked uneasy when I found him at the bar; but he smiled and said, "there you are, man! How about we grab a pitcher and sit in a booth?"

When we were sitting, we chatted for a few minutes about the Reds and whether they had any chance this season (we concluded that third place was about the best they could hope for); about the latest political scandal (the Mayor's Chief of Staff and the Treasurer of the Catholic Diocese of Cincinnati sharing the same call girl--at least the story was original); and about some of the latest office gossip at Brockton Publishing, where he was a co-worker of my wife, Susan.

But I knew that Greg had something on his mind, some reason for asking me to meet him for a beer. Finally I just said, "so, Greg, what did you want to talk to me about?"

A brief silence, during which Greg looked more nervous than ever. He cleared his throat and false-started a couple of times. Then he said, "listen, Andy, Susan said ... I mean she told me that ..."

I just waited. His eyes were fixed on my face--I truly hadn't the slightest idea what he was going to say.

"Susan said that I should never ever mention this to you, that you liked to keep it totally private--so forgive me if I'm doing the wrong thing, you know? I don't want to make you uncomfortable. It's just that ... well, I need to be sure that you're really okay with this."

"With what?" I asked, still not knowing what we were talking about.

He licked his lips, looking unhappy. "With ... you know, the Game. The Game that you and Susan play, where she ... you know, she ..."

He gestured vaguely with his hands, and his voice trailed off as he looked at me, imploring me somehow to finish his sentence.

"Sorry, Greg," I said, "I'm still not getting you."

There was a long silence. Greg stared at me, and I swear I could see him grow pale.

I waited again, gesturing at him to go on--and finally, reluctantly, he said, "Andy, don't you know about ... about Susan, you know ... having ... having sex with other guys?"



Greg had joined Susan at Brockton Publishing about a year earlier, leaving a lower-level position at a New York publisher to come to Cincinnati. He was maybe 28 or so, about ten years younger than Susan and me.

Greg was a big, rangy guy, good-looking in a kind of outdoorsy way. He was single but seemed to have no trouble finding female companionship. In fact I'd seen him at Brockton book parties with several different attractive women.

He had gotten to know Susan first, of course, because they worked together, but I'd grown to like him very much. Finding we had a common interest in baseball--which bored Susan to tears--we'd gone to a couple of Reds games the previous summer and really enjoyed ourselves. We also worked out at the same gym, and from time to time Susan and I invited him over for dinner. He was a good guy, and I enjoyed his company.

Now, though, I could feel my face reddening with anger, and I said quietly, "Greg, just what the fuck are you talking about!?"

Greg shrank back from me, on the other side of the booth. He was bigger than I was by maybe 4 inches and 30 pounds, but he looked absolutely terrified.

"Andy, I ....

"I swear to God, she told me it was a game you played, that it turned you both on.

"I don't ... this is unbelievable, man." He moved as if to get up out of the booth, but I put a hand on his arm.

"Hold on, Greg!" I took a deep breath, and forced myself to speak softly.

"I'll stay calm, I promise. And I'm not going to slug you or anything. But you can't just walk out of here--you have to tell me what the hell Susan told you."

He nodded, and sat back down heavily. "Okay, Andy. It's just that ... Jesus Christ, I can't believe you don't know about this."

I stared at him, my mind whirling.

"Susan told me that ... that, that you two play a Game. That you're both turned-on by the idea of her ... having sex with other guys, and then going home and telling you all about it.

"And she said that a part of the Game was complete secrecy--that none of the men she, uh, had sex with were ever supposed to mention it to you. We weren't supposed to let on in any way that we were doing it with her, or that you knew anything about it.

"Part of the thrill for you two, she said, was pretending that it was secret cheating. And she also said that ... well, that you felt a little embarrassed, you know, that it turned you on that other guys, you know, had sex with Susan.

"So she made me swear on my life that I'd never say a word to you about it. But I, I just couldn't do it, Andy--it just felt too damn weird to me, and I had to double-check with you, to make sure it was really okay."

He must have been able to see from my face that I was stunned, and he looked more unhappy than ever.

Finally I said, "so you've been fucking Susan?"

Slowly, unwillingly, he said, "uh, yeah, we, uh, did it twice. Once two weekends ago, when your mom was sick and you were in Louisville overnight, and then again Tuesday afternoon. We, uh, took the afternoon off work and went to my apartment."

There was a long silence. My mind was going a thousand miles an hour--shock, rage, sadness, self-reproach: how the fuck could I not have known about this?

Finally I said, "and she convinced you I was in on this? That it was okay with me, part of a sex-game she and I played?"

He nodded, looking relieved that my hands weren't around his throat. "It sounded kinky, I admit, but she was so convincing. Said you guys had been playing like this for years, and that it really got your motor running."

He frowned. "That's exactly what she said, in fact. 'It really gets Andy's motor running; he's all over me when I tell him about it!' And she gave me this big, sexy smile."

We sat for another couple of minutes. Finally, I said, "Greg ... in case it isn't already obvious, I didn't know a damn thing about any of this. I thought I was married to a loving, wonderful woman, not a ... a cheating whore.

"I need to think about this. I have no idea what I'm going to do--needless to say this has been one hell of a shock!" I laughed humorlessly. Then I leaned forward to look at him intently.

"Do two things for me, okay? First--no more fucking Susan."

"Of course, Andy! I'd never ..." Greg was nodding vigorously at me.

"And second, don't let on that you've talked to me. If she suggests getting together again, just make up some sort of excuse. I've got to figure out how I'm going to deal with this, and I need you to keep her totally in the dark."

Greg nodded again. "You have my word on it, Andy. And listen, I ... I swear to you I never would have touched Susan if I'd ... well, you know--if I hadn't believed that it was what you wanted too.

"You're my friend, man! And I feel like a complete shit ..." He looked at me with tears in his eyes, and I had no idea what to say to him. Should I be trying to make him feel better, or grabbing a tire iron and beating him to death?



After Greg left I pulled myself together enough to call home. Fortunately Susan wasn't there yet, and I left a plausible-sounding message about being held up at work--she should go ahead and eat without me.

I knew I needed some time. There was no way I was going to be able to face her right away. I went around the corner to a diner and ate a hamburger and a salad, without tasting a single bite. For all I knew it could have been borscht and a shrimp salad sandwich.

I suppose I was the typical cuckolded husband, because I hadn't had the slightest clue that anything was wrong with my marriage. I basically adored Susan, and I was sure that she loved me.

We'd been married 14 years, no kids, nice comfortable house right near Burnet Woods, two jobs we liked (I work in the Development Office at the University). We traveled a lot, saw our friends and family (most of them living in the area), and generally enjoyed our life together.

Susan is short and blond, with big breasts and great curves. She's pretty rather than beautiful, but her sexy figure has always gotten her attention, and she's always seemed to enjoy it.

In fact, she was flirtatious with me at the party where we first met, and for years I've watched her flirt with guys at other parties we've been to. You know, laugh and joke, maybe dance too close, or even let someone grab a little feel. And it's never bothered me a bit--because I knew she loved me and she'd be going home with me. What a fucking moron I'd been!

I imagine that our sex life was pretty much average for a couple like us--we made love maybe a couple of times a week. More when we were on vacation, probably almost every day, and less when things were busy at work or during the holidays when we were visiting family.

Maybe it was routine, but I would have said it was a satisfying routine. Like every married couple we both had things we liked. Susan was crazy about me licking her, and I'd learned to do it just the way she liked: slowly and teasingly at first, all around her thighs while avoiding her pussy lips. Then, when she got worked up, I'd lick around the sides of her clit while sliding a couple of fingers into her. When she was ready to come I'd curl my fingers up to rub her G-spot and use my tongue on her clit; and Susan invariably went crazy, humping up at me and crying out as she came.

She knew the ways to turn me on, too--like giving me a stop-and-start blowjob, with lots of interruptions in the middle to rub her breasts all over my chest or lower them towards my mouth so I could suck on them. Sometimes she'd get me hot that way and then we'd fuck; at other times she'd work on me slowly, then build me up to a big finish in her mouth.

So what if we did the same things in bed a lot? I had always thought it was great--though I guess what I had to offer wasn't enough to satisfy Susan!

You might think that by the time I finished dinner I'd be ready to go home and throw my cheating wife out of the house--but I wasn't there yet. It was like hearing that a loved one has been killed in an accident; my mind simply hadn't absorbed the news. I kept thinking that it all had to be some sort of mistake.

And I realized that I needed to hear the whole story from Greg--everything that Susan had told him--before I could begin to process it and figure out what the hell I was going to do.



I didn't think there was any way I could pretend to Susan that night that everything was normal, but somehow I managed it. She greeted me affectionately, as she always did, and we chatted about our workdays while I got myself a bowl of ice cream.

She even snuggled up to me in bed, though thank God she didn't seem to want to make love. I really think I would have ended up choking the life out of her! As soon as I could tell from her breathing that she was asleep, I carefully pulled away from her and rolled to my own side of the bed. I didn't even want to touch her.

My dreams that night were horrible--an unending succession of men fucking Susan. I saw her gasping and writhing with pleasure as Greg rode her, watched her claw his back and scream as he made her come over and over. Then she was fucking some other guy cowboy-style, smiling as he caressed her tits, or leaning forward to stick her tongue deep in his mouth while he pumped his cock up into her.

Then there was a tall, athletic guy taking her from behind, holding her breasts in his hands while he thrust in and out of her, and Susan moaned and cried out, "yeah, give me that big dick!"

Needless to say, it was a pretty awful night.

I called Greg the next morning, as soon as Susan had left for work, and arranged to meet him for lunch. He was a little reluctant at first--but I had no trouble making him understand that I needed to hear the whole story. Last night I'd been too shocked to process all of what he'd told me.

After a morning spent staring at the wall of my office, trying and failing to focus on any aspect of my job, I met Greg at a little Greek restaurant on Calhoun Street. By mutual agreement we ate first, and then I asked him to tell me the whole story again.

"From the beginning, Greg--you can probably imagine that I was having trouble dealing with it last night."

Actually, I didn't learn that much more. Susan had gone out for a casual drink with Greg about three weeks earlier and basically made a pass at him. She'd told him about our Game and that she was attracted to him.

That day he'd put her off--mainly because he was more stunned than anything else. It seemed like such a far-fetched story, and the idea of being good friends with me and sleeping with her made him very uncomfortable (or so he said).

But they talked about it a couple more times over the next few days, and when she told him on a Friday that I was in Louisville for the weekend he agreed to meet her at a motel. (She'd actually suggested our house, but Greg said the idea creeped him out.)

Greg was understandably reluctant to tell me about the sex in any detail, but it was obvious that it was hot. Susan would have been desirable to just about any man, and Greg made it clear that she had been eager, athletic, and untiring. They did it two or three times each time they got together, enjoying plenty of oral sex and exploring a variety of positions. I clenched my teeth but said nothing.

"She liked to talk dirty," he said, watching my face warily. "She said she got a kick out of saying dirty stuff to me, knowing she'd be going home to repeat it all to you."

I wasn't sure I wanted to know, but I said, "what kind of dirty stuff?"

"Oh, you know ... 'fuck me harder,' or 'I want that big thing inside me,' stuff like that." He was obviously embarrassed, and I didn't press him further. I had the feeling that the other things she said were probably worse.

But I did ask him to tell me everything Susan said about the Game and how long it had been going on. Apparently, it was a couple of years at least.

"She didn't say exactly," he told me, "but I got the idea that she'd, uh, she'd been with a number of guys before me. She said she always had one 'playmate' at a time --that was her word, 'playmate'--and that she had sex with him for a couple of months before breaking it off. She said after a while it was less fun for you and her to talk about if it was the same guy--you liked hearing about someone new."

He grimaced. "Man, I am SO sorry..."

"I know, Greg. She suckered you. Forget about it.

"Listen--did she tell you anything about how it started, and who the guys were before you?"

"Not about how it started," he said, "but she did mention a couple of guys. None of the names meant anything to me except Arnold Morrison--"

"That guy on the City Council?"

"Yeah," Greg said. "She said she met him when Brockton had a book party for some political book they published, 2-3 years ago.

"Susan also said that you'd never known any of her 'playmates' personally, before me. It sounded like she'd done that on purpose, so there wasn't any chance you'd figure out what she was up to."

"Did she tell you why she went after you, then?"

Again he looked uncomfortable. "She, uh ... she said I was too yummy to resist."

He put his hand over his face for a moment. "Andy--Jesus! You must want to fucking kill me! I feel like the lowest piece of scum on earth."

Grimly I said, "I'm not blaming you, Greg. A lot of guys would have been happy to knock off a piece with Susan without giving her husband a second thought. And she gave you this cockamamie story....

"I can't say that I wouldn't have believed it too, if the whole thing had happened to me. What really matters is that Susan's been cheating on me. For years, from the sound of it. How she must enjoy fucking around and pulling the wool over my eyes!"

I sat back, staring into space. Greg didn't say anything.



There were a lot of questions in my mind about what the hell I was going to do: how to act around Susan? Would I keep pretending to be a loving husband, and totally in the dark? Could I confront her, and throw her ass out? Or would I mope around for a while and let her worry?

But one question already had an answer. Our marriage was over; Susan was history. At least, she was history if what Greg had told me turned out to be the truth. As shocked and furious as I was, I couldn't simply lower the boom on her without knowing for certain.

I called my friend Brian and made a date to see him for dinner; then I left another message for Susan, saying I was eating with Brian and I'd be home again on the late side.

Brian was my oldest and best friend; we'd met when he was President of Zeta Beta Tau, the fraternity I'd joined in college. We were very close; I was a groomsman at his wedding to Emily, and he was my best man when I married Susan. He had known Susan almost as long as I had, and I knew he and Emily were fond of her. So he was as stunned to hear the story as I had been.

Brian was terrific, as I knew he would be. He let me tell it my way, asking just a few questions as we went. And he was patient and supportive, even handing me a napkin without a word when I started to cry. We're not the kind of friends who said "I love you" to each other, but I knew he was in my corner and it helped a lot.

When I was finally done talking, he asked me quietly, "do you know what you're going to do, Andy?"

"Two things," I said. "So far I only know two things. First, I need to make absolutely certain that this is really true. I still can hardly believe it, you know? I mean, I've been so sure that Susan loves me!

"And the other is: if it is true, Susan is in for a very unpleasant time! There's no forgive and forget in me, not for this. We're done, and the way I feel right now it's not going to be pretty, either."

He nodded. "I can hardly blame you, believe me."

Then he said, "how can Emily or I help?"

Emily! She and Susan were friends also, though not as close as Brian and I were.

"Listen--would you be willing to keep this a secret, even from Emily, for the next few days?"

"Sure, man. We don't usually keep anything from one another, but this is pretty much a special case. I won't say a word to her until you give me the OK."

"Thanks, Brian--I appreciate that." I sat and thought for a moment.

"The only other name I've got for one of Susan's fuck-buddies is Arnold Morrison, and I was hoping you could help me get to him. He has no idea who I am, but he'd certainly be willing to talk to you."

Brian was a political writer, a columnist for Time Magazine; but he'd worked for nearly a decade covering politics for the Cincinnati Enquirer, and he was respected by everybody in the local political scene.

"I can do that no problem," he said, and we spent a while discussing how to set it up. Then we talked about how I should behave around Susan. Brian advised me to suck it up and pretend to be my usual self--don't give her even a hint that anything was wrong until I was absolutely sure about everything.

I shrugged and said, "I'm not so sure I can pull that off--but I'll give it a try."

And in fact, I managed just about as well as the previous night. Again, thank God, Susan snuggled up to me but didn't approach me for sex. I don't know whether I would have lost my hard-on, strangled her to death, or started crying like a baby.



Two days later, at 10:30 am, Brian and I were sitting in Arnold Morrison's big office, looking at him across his desk as he greeted Brian and me cordially. They did a little of that "how have you been? What is old so-and-so up to?" chitchat, and then he said, pleasantly, "well, Brian, what's on your mind?"

He was a tall guy, just short of 50. Good-looking enough, I guess, though a bit slick in the way politicians often are. And he had that manner that many politicians have, a way of seeming very sincere and very interested in you. Was that what had appealed to Susan? I had no idea.

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