tagNon-EroticThe Things We Leave Behind

The Things We Leave Behind


Jake, a handsome thirty-something man, visits with his elderly father Ben. They talk about baseball, cars and the weather, but Jake changes the subject abruptly and the tone turns serious, even somber.

"Dad, I'm leaving Samantha. We're getting a divorce. I'll be moving out next week."

"Why?" asks the grizzled old man.

"Our marriage isn't working out."

"What about your kids?"

"They'll be fine."

Ben huffs at the thought, believing otherwise.

"You've met a girl," Ben tosses in confidently.

Like an elite poker player, his father somehow sees the truth that his son conceals. Jake is momentarily frozen, unsure how to proceed. Jake knows, however, that full disclosure is inevitable. Better to be honest now than to explain this lie later.

"Yeah, I have. Her name is Sharon. She's really great."

Jake expects a harsh reaction, but his father is merely wistful. Ben leans back in his chair and sighs. He contemplates the situation as if he were trolling through a lifetime full of experiences and memories, trying to locate those that would help him counsel his son.

"Are you free tomorrow night?"

"Umm," Jake responds, apparently trying to pore through his schedule mentally. "I guess so."

"I'd like you to come back. This guy Alec lives across the hall. We get together every Thursday night for a couple of hours to talk."

"Why?" Jake asks. "Are you two going to gang up on me?"

"Nope," Ben chuckles. "I promise."

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Jake drives home, realizing his father disapproves of his impending divorce. He remembers many good years with his wife Helen, but those years are in the distant past. Marital life has taken its toll. Raising children and financial woes have crushed the romantic and sexual excitement.

He has a new girlfriend now, Sharon. She is sexy and vibrant. Jake is uncontrollably drawn to her. Her wet kisses feel, to him, like liquid sex. Each taste increases his need for her exponentially.

Sex with Sharon is both romantic and sensual. She opens and accepts him so easily, so completely. She is new, different and exciting. His touch arouses her without fail; he rediscovers skills he thought he had lost and discovers new ones he never imagined having. Her laugh is contagious, her cries of pleasure feminine and full of joy. He hungers to be with her, to see her smile and bring her ever increasing levels of pleasure. She is a beautiful and happy new toy to play with. The fact that she responds to him and is eager for more makes him feel – for the first time in many years - like a man.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

After fabricating an excuse to leave home, Jake heads straight to Sharon's house. She opens the door and welcomes him as only a woman in love can. He looks into her eyes and tells her he loves her. They kiss tenderly. He playfully pinches her nipple through the top she is wearing, and she reciprocates by rubbing two fingers along the bulge in his pants. They hold each other, smiling and kissing and cooing. They are lovers in every sense of the word.

Jake removes Sharon's clothing a single article at a time. Her body is fresh, uncharted territory and she is completely open to every one of his explorations. He sucks on her nipples, because he knows they are sensitive and loves to hear her squeal in delight. He rubs his face between her breasts, then kisses a vertical path down her body. She opens her legs for him - a simple, sensual act that Jake accepts as the highest unspoken compliment she could bestow upon him. He rewards her by massaging her mound with both his fingers and his tongue. She begs for him to lick her deeper, but she knows she will have to beg more. Much more. Jake loves the sexual power games they play; they are yet another wonderful new experience Sharon brings to his life. She begs and begs and begs again. When Jake senses she is at her peak and needs a final climax, he seeks out her sensitive clit with his tongue, finding it hiding beneath folds of warm flesh. She gasps, her legs spasm and her hands reach for something to hang on to. She lurches forward, grabs Jake's hair and climaxes, providing a fresh flow of sweet fluid for her lover to consume. He is glad to oblige; his tongue continues to clean and pet her as she rests.

Jake then flips her on her belly and licks her anus, an exotic act that has always held a particular fascination for him. Sharon, eager to please, opens her cheeks and tells him how good it feels. There is no self-consciousness or shyness between them. Sharon turns around – finally - and grasps his cock and pulls it toward her. She wants him, and again he feels like a man able to completely satisfy the woman he loves. Jake marvels at his new relationship; here is a girl who wants sex with him in every endless variation, not out of duty or sympathy, but out of love. She kisses and sucks the tip, savoring his hardness, lapping up the small amount of fluid forming at the opening. She smiles at him as she pulls him between her lips. She works her tongue underneath, stimulating the single spot that always drives Jake crazy. When he is close to orgasm, Sharon sucks faster, sending him the clear message that she hungers for his impending orgasm and the taste of his semen. He studies her warm, round face as he spurts into her mouth, thinking he must be the luckiest man in the world. She pumps him from the base to the head to ensure that she has swallowed every drop. She enjoys satisfying her man.

Jake can't imagine letting this go. Ever. He wants to scoop Sharon up in his arms and fly her away to a desert island somewhere. They would make love every day, for hours on end, just like this. He needs this, craves this. He loves her very much. He is a new man.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The next night, Jake visits with his father and Alec.

"I felt like a new man," Ben explains. "Was married for eleven years before I met her. That woman was the most exciting thing I ever laid eyes on."

Jake is surprised. He never heard details about his father's affair. Vague rumors occasionally circulated through the family. Jake assumed that if the rumors were true, it was a casual fling that ended quickly. Apparently not.

"It's an amazing thing, an affair," Alec says, puffing on a pipe he had lit a few minutes before. "You get married and think everything is set for life. But a sweet-smelling thing crawls past and you miss the excitement. The chase."

"Did you have an affair, too?" Jake asks Alec curiously. He is out of his element here, discussing very private things with old men.

"I did. Three affairs, to be precise. Left my wife for the last one. She was one hot woman. Smart, too. We could fuck all day and work crossword puzzles in the breaks between."

Everyone laughs, but Jake is uneasy, hearing this vulgar old man discuss sex in such a crude manner. He realizes, however, that perhaps his father and Alec are not so different from himself.

"Dad, I always heard about an affair, but it was kept pretty quiet."

"It stays with you, Jake. The feeling never goes away. Not even forty years later."

"Why? It was so long ago."

"I still hunger for that woman today. Oh, the times we had. It was wild."

"Where is she? Is she still alive?"

"No idea. I doubt it. She moved on many years ago."

"Did you love her?" Jake asks cautiously. He knows he is treading dangerous ground.

"Yes, I did. Very much."

"Did you ever think about leaving Mom for this other lady?"

"I admit that I did."

"He woulda done it, too, if it hadn't been for your family," Alec chimes in. He points at Ben and adds, "It broke him up to let that woman slip through his fingers."

Jake looks at his father, an exhausted but stoic man who has spent a lifetime fighting to keep his family afloat. Ben had been a construction foreman for many years before building his own company. He had always been accustomed to difficult times; the ups and downs of the local economy prevented the family from enjoying any financial stability. Ben has always been, above all else, a tough character who keeps his thoughts private and shows little emotion. His father's sadness, therefore, strikes a deep chord within Jake.

"If you loved her so much, maybe you should have left. We would have survived."

Ben shakes his head and tries to respond, but struggles. He doesn't want to be emotional, especially in front of his son.

"Jake, your father loved you guys," Alec intervenes. "He woulda thrown himself in front of a train to protect you and your mother."

"Yeah, but..."

"But nothing, Jake," Ben finally spits out. "There comes a time where a man has to ask himself where he belongs."

"Jake," Alec says. "Your father and I talk about this shit every week. Your father loved this other woman, but stayed with you. I loved another woman and left. I think I was the one who fucked up."

"You regret leaving your wife?" Jake asks Alec.

"I certainly do. Like your dad says, you gotta know where you belong."

Jake looks down and suddenly feels as if he were in over his head.

"And where did you belong?" Jake asks Alec.

"With my family."

Jake contemplates Alec's response. Did they really feel as strongly about their women as he feels about Sharon?

"You love this girl, don't you kid?" Alec asks directly.


"The sex is great, I bet." Alec muses. "There's nothing better than sex with a new girl."

"I want to be with her," Jake mumbles.

"Of course you do," Alec continues while Ben sits idly. "She's new and exciting. Different."

"No, its more than that," Jake insists. "She is a great person. You'd both like her a lot."

"I don't doubt that for a second, Jake," Alec says. "I loved my woman, too. I left my wife for her after the kids were grown. But I didn't really belong with her."

"How do you know?"

"I married a great woman. We built a family. How could I belong somewhere else?"

"Did you try to get your wife back?"

"It was too late."

Jake looks down, embarrassed by the tone of the conversation. Jake thinks that he has a handle on reality better than these old men did in their day, but he is unsure enough to stay and listen.

"Jake," his father speaks up. "Life is short. Just make damn sure that you leave... something of value behind, okay?"

"What do you mean?" Jake asks quizzically.

"Well," Ben says. "I mean, we're all gonna die. When it's all said and done, what matters is that we left something on this world that's worth a damn."

"I don't really have that, Jake," Alec says, clearly upset. "I have nothing. My kids don't visit anymore. They have a step-father, so I grew apart from them. Both my ex-wives have moved on. My relationships were all temporary, kid. Disposable. It was fun and made for some good tales, but I have nothing left to give and nobody to give it to."

Alec excuses himself and leaves. Jake is quieted. The old men have lived a long life and have experienced many things. He can't imagine that many years down the road, he will still be ruminating about his past like this, chastising himself over past decisions.

"Sorry," Ben says. "I didn't want to get emotional, but you should know that what you're going through isn't new."

"I can see that," Jake says.

"I can't judge you, Jake. My life hasn't been squeaky clean and I don't have any answers."

Jake doesn't understand, not really. He wants to ask what he should leave behind, and whom should he leave it to. He doesn't, though, deciding that perhaps someday he would figure it out.

"I'm proud of you, son. I always have been. Never forget that."

Jake hugs his father, then wonders if his own son will come to him someday when he is old and hug him the same way. He hopes so.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Jake returns to Sharon that night and makes love to her. As they fondle and play like excited virgins, Jake asks himself if this is where he belongs, by Sharon's side.

So many things about Sharon excite him - her voice, her smell, the way she reacts to his touch, her laugh, the taste of her kisses and the warmth of her skin There's more, so much more. She is wonderful and he enjoys every moment with her.

But...does he belong with her?

Wearing a pair of black thigh-high stockings - his favorite article of lingerie - she reclines on the bed, shows him her slit and invites him to take her. He teases her with his erection, prodding at her opening for endless moments, permitting her pussy lips to wrap around the head of his manhood and hold him. She begs for his erection, begs for it deep inside her. He loves her body, her smile, the way she plays and begs and yearns. He relents and thrusts deep inside.

He can't bear the thought that maybe he doesn't belong with her. Making love with her feels so good that he can't comprehend not being able to enjoy it ever again. Jake asks himself how spending time with Sharon could feel so perfect, and yet still be the wrong thing for him to do.

He takes Sharon with wild abandon, pinning her arms and thrusting deep. He doesn't know if this will be his last time with Sharon, but doubt has crept into his mind. Impossibly, he feels more attracted to Sharon then ever; his thrusts send him higher, to a new level. It isn't fair, Jake thinks: If this is so wrong, then this shouldn't feel so good. Sharon has orgasm after orgasm, but Jake holds off. He kisses Sharon, massages her breasts and continues to thrust rhythmically. Jake doesn't want to climax, not yet – perhaps this will be the last time. He hangs on to his impending orgasm for as long as possible, keeping a tight hold on this moment of ecstasy. He wants time to stop right now, forever, but Sharon feels so good...so perfect...that he can no longer hold back.

Jake climaxes. Hot, thick sperm is pumped from his body and into hers. Sharon accepts his fluid completely; she is proud to carry Jake's seed. They smile, hug and dance together as she captures those final few drops .

Jake is in love and completely intoxicated. He knows he can't simply dump Sharon. The idea is painful and gut-wrenching. Maybe he's wrong. Maybe he really does belong with Sharon. He is confused and needs time to think.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

A few nights later, Jake and Sharon talk while strolling through a city park. Kids are running and laughing while adults lounge on various benches nearby.

"I can't leave my family. At least not yet," Jake begins.

"Okay?" Sharon asks quizzically.

"I need...time. My kids mean so much to me, I don't want them to be hurt."

"Hey, it's okay. I understand."

"You do?" Jake is surprised.

"Yes," she responds, turning to him and looking him directly in the eye. "Sometimes I feel so guilty. I mean, would you still be divorcing your wife if you hadn't met me?"

"Oh yeah," Jake answers.

"Well, I'm not so sure about that. Anyway, I love you. I can be patient."

Jake smiles and holds her tight to his chest. He kisses her forehead and tells her how much he loves her.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Three years later, Jake's father, Ben, passes away in his sleep.

At the funeral, Jake gives the eulogy. He turns to address the gathered mourners.

"My father was a special man," he begins. "He wasn't perfect and had flaws. Like everyone else, I suppose. But, I'll never forget that he was always there for me. He sacrificed for all of us in many ways."

Jake begins to break down on the podium and an understanding hush falls over the gathering. He takes several moments to gather himself and wipe away the tears that had been streaming down his cheeks.

"My father once told me, 'The only thing that matters are those things you leave behind.' I never really understood what he meant until he died. I can see that my father left us all so many things. He gave us his hard work, his energy, his enthusiasm for life and his love. He taught me to be tough, own my mistakes and not blame others. He taught me to sacrifice and be the best person I can be. I loved him and will never forget him. His spirit, his energy and passion will live on."

After the service, he is greeted and hugged warmly by his family and friends. He scoops up his son and gives him a big hug. His daughter clutches his leg, hiding behind it for protection from the throng of funeral-goers. Jake can see that his kids are proud of him, because he gave such a nice speech in front of so many people.

He kisses his wife. He loves her very much and will be with her forever. He loves and misses Sharon. Jake feels very naïve about life; he doesn't understand how love could have steered him in so many conflicting directions, or how his time with Sharon could have been full of such happiness and joy, yet still, inexplicably, be wrong.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Jake spends the next three decades of his life with his family. Sharon eventually gives up hope that Jake will leave his wife. She breaks up with him and moves away. Over many years, Jake and Samantha patch their marriage and are able to move forward. Gradually, they fall back in love and are able to put the wounds of the past behind them.

At the age of fifty-six, Samantha is diagnosed with breast cancer. Jake takes care of her tenderly, through myriad chemotherapy treatments and surgeries to remove the cancerous lumps. Jake appreciates his wife in a way that had eluded him previously. She grew weaker physically and it became apparent that she would not survive much longer. In her final days, Jake sees that she is a very hard and courageous woman. He tells her many times that he is honored to be her husband.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Jake, now sixty-eight, lives alone in a small apartment. He is visited by Sam, his thirty-six year old son. Sam has been married for ten years. He and his wife, Clarissa, live in an upscale suburban home with their three children. Today happens to be their tenth anniversary.

"Congratulations, Sam," Jake says. "I'm proud of you. Ten years."

"Thanks, Dad. I have an awful lot of respect for you and Mom these days. Marriage is harder than I thought it would be."

Jake rolls his eyes. "I really wasn't such a great father, Jake. I'm sorry for that."

"What are you talking about?" Sam responds incredulously. "You were a fantastic father."

"We hit some major bumps in the road."

"I've been married only ten years and already I feel like I'm missing something. Like life is passing me by. You made it look so easy."

Jake shudders. He recognizes his son's words – many years ago, they were his own.

"Did you know I had an affair?" Jake asks his son.

Sam is embarrassed. He is dimly aware of his father's affair, but doesn't like to think about it. He recalls that his mother was crying frequently and his father was away much of the time when he was a young child. He overheard many conversations of divorce.

"I guess I knew you and Mom were having problems."

"Oh yes. I met this woman, Sharon, when things weren't going so well. I fell for her like a ton of bricks."

"Wow. I didn't know."

"If you open yourself up to love another, it will chart its own course."

"So, what stopped you from going through with the divorce?"

"My father once told me, 'You gotta know where you belong in life.' When you start a family, I think that's where you always belong."

"Mom forgave you?"

"She did. In time."

"I don't understand. Why is it so hard?"

Jake shakes his head dejectedly and thinks back to his time with Sharon.

"I still feel her. She was like a flower, beautiful and soft. I can still feel her kisses and I can still see the way her eyes lit up when I held her." Jake points to his own chest. "She is still with me. In here."

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