tagNovels and NovellasThe Touch Ch. 21

The Touch Ch. 21


WARNING TO READERS - This is a long, rambling, multi-part story and VERY British. The individual chapters will make more sense if read in sequence.

Pt. 21 - Of Commitments and Consequences

The garden centre was really busy that week, it was Mother's Day on Sunday and we always sold a lot of potted indoor plants and gifts that weekend. This year Maggie had bought in a nice range of decorative bowls from Holland which Jack's team had planted up with early crocuses and had put a dedicated special Mother's Day display in one of the smaller units.

I think that a lot of customer's were also visiting us out of curiosity; the new arboretum structure was visible from the main road and was drawing a lot of interest and we had all commented on the large numbers of new faces passing through the centre. At Emma's urging Maggie had also persuaded the main suppliers of our garden buildings and greenhouses to put up a row of flag poles along the perimeter fence, two of them would eventually hold flags with our own logo, but even the manufacturer's flags that were already in place added visual interest. I was pleased to see that Colin and Jack had finished laying the turf and planting up the rose beds by the entrance so that the whole of our road facing frontage was now smartly landscaped.

Grace Jackson, the new catering manager had arrived that week and had immediately set about organising her new domain. As promised she had arranged for her choice of assistant cook to come in to meet Maggie. Suzan Li was also Chinese, she was small, about 55 and really charming, from what I could gather she was some distant cousin to Grace but more importantly had worked with her before and was a very experienced all round cook. By Friday they had got the kitchen working and had made trips to the cash and carry wholesalers and were cooking up a storm, so that Maggie could sample the dishes that they had agreed for the provisional menu. The added bonus was that all the staff got to have a cooked breakfast, lunch and cakes for afternoon tea on Friday and Saturday; everybody agreed that the food was excellent.

The restaurant was going to be one of the projects under Maggie's supervision and so Grace, Emma and she spent most of the week together, finalising menus and unpacking and organising the furniture for the dining room. Grace and Maggie had arranged to start interviewing candidates for the kitchen staff and waitresses for the restaurant the next week. The intention was to have the catering project up and running a week before the official opening to iron out any issues.

Mother's Day was one of those celebrations that had never really caught on in a big way for our family, when we were kids Emma and I would get Mum a posy of flowers and we would usually have a nice cooked lunch at home, but that was it. The last couple of years since I had been working I had bought her a decent bouquet and had paid for the three of us to go out to lunch at a pub somewhere and that had been my intention this year as well. As she was on her own I had insisted that Maggie join us for the day.

I had already booked the restaurant and ordered the bouquets for Mum from Emma and me, to be delivered to the garden centre on Saturday so that we could take them home with us at the end of the day ready for Sunday morning. I had also spoken by telephone to the twins in France, and arranged for a bouquet to be sent to Maggie on their behalf. This year, because everything had changed in the last couple of days, what I really would have liked was to have taken Mum out to lunch alone and then spend the afternoon making love to her, but that definitely wasn't going to happen, we needed to put on a face of family normality. We had also discovered during the intervening days that we needed to create for ourselves a whole new concept of what was to be normal for our changed situation and part of that was making sure that we did not become so wrapped up in each other that we pushed the other people that we cared for away, especially Emma who in many ways was still emotionally fragile and reliant upon both of us.

I had spent a fair amount of time thinking about what we had done. I had no real moral issues with the idea of incest between Mum and I, we had been more like intimate friends than mother and son since Dad left, and becoming lovers seemed to be quite natural.

Thursday morning Mum and I were both still pretty euphoric if also a bit stunned by our joint surrender to longing and passion the previous night. After our talk, I had followed Mum into the hall and then swept her up into my arms and carried her back to her large bed and we had spent the rest of the night in each others arms. We did not make love again; we just held each other and talked and then finally slept spooned together until morning.

The really strange thing was that from Thursday morning onwards everyday life had been pretty well normal. We got up, we took our showers separately; got dressed and had breakfast all much the same as any other normal day, except, on that morning we checked the house before leaving for work to make sure that we had not missed any tell-tale thing that was out of place.

As I did virtually every other morning I told Mum how sexy she looked in her nurses' uniform and even though we were alone in the house we both treated it just as flirtatious banter.

"Just keep the sexy uniform on and we can both stay at home for the morning," I joked. At least I think I was joking.

It wasn't going to happen, not today anyway, that was just the sort of irregular behaviour that would draw unwanted attention. She gave me a playful slap on the arm and then slipped her arms around my neck so that we could have a final long, deep indulgent kiss before leaving the house. That was a luxury we would need to forgo when Emma was at home. I rode in to work with the feel of her breasts imprinted on my chest and the taste of her lipstick on my mouth.

It wasn't the going in to work that caused me concern, it was the coming home again that evening. I had several jobs to catch-up with as I had not been in the previous day and I wanted to call in to see Mark Dwight at his farm on the way home. We were intending to open the farm produce shop on Wednesday and I needed to speak to him about the delivery of the first consignment of fruit and vegetables and run an idea past him. I arrived at the Dwight farm sometime after seven and by the time that Mark and I had shared a beer and sorted out the detail of the order and delivery schedules it was getting close to eight o'clock.

"There is one final thing, Mark; it is about what we want to call the shop." He looked a little puzzled. "Maggie and I thought that I would be nice to call it, 'Gracie's Fruit and Vegetables' in memory of your mother...... after all it was originally her stall for over thirty years."

He smiled broadly and clapped me on the shoulder. "That would be great, really great," he enthused. "Mum would have loved that idea and Dad will be really touched, he still misses Mum a lot."

"I'm glad you approve. I needed to run the idea past you tonight so that we can get the sign writers started early next week. Oh, one more thing, will you speak to your father for me... Maggie and I would really like it if he would agree to come along and officially open the shop at Easter?"

It was about eight fifteen when I got home. Mum's car was in the drive so I knew she was in ahead of me. I suddenly felt bloody terrified! The memory of being with Mum the night before had filled me with warmth all day and I had been looking forward to seeing her this evening, but suddenly I was filled with doubt. What if, she had had a change of heart during the day? What if, she thought that I was late because I was avoiding her and was feeling hurt? I just sat outside on the Vespa for as long as it took me to smoke a cigarette, my legs were like jelly and my balls felt like stones of ice.

When I finally plucked up the courage to go indoors, I found Mum and Emma in the kitchen. Both seemed happy and cheerful and everything appeared totally normal.

"Hello, darling, you are home late." Mum looked up and smiled and our eyes met and held for just a couple of seconds. It was long enough for me to know that things were OK between us. "Dinner will be a bit late; I have only just got in myself .... But look!" She waved towards the pans bubbling on the hob, "Emma has done all the vegetables for me." I had completely forgotten that Mum has said that morning that she would cook dinner and by the look of the pastry envelopes that she was brushing with egg we were having chicken en croute, with French beans, cauliflower and mushroom and white wine sauce. Emma helping with the cooking...that was a real first!

I went up to my room to shower and change and by the time I came back down, Emma had laid the table in the dining room and Mum was taking the chicken from the oven. I drained, mashed and creamed the potatoes and we were ready to eat. Dinner was superb and afterwards I told Mum and Emma to go and sit down whilst I finished off the washing up and put the dishes away. The rest of the evening was perfectly normal the three of us sat together in the sitting room, Mum and I on the couch reading and Emma on the floor by my legs with her head lodged against my knee listening to her walkman and scanning magazines.

About ten thirty Emma went through to the kitchen and made teas for her and Mum and brought me a coffee. "I'm tired," she yawned, "I shall take mine up and go to bed." She kissed both of us and left, I heard her go up the stairs and close the door to her room. It was good that she wanted to spend more time with us and less alone in her room and I was glad that she seemed happy and contented again.

Mum shuffled up the couch until she was comfortably snugged under my arm, her head resting on my shoulder and her feet tucked beneath her. I tilted my head so that I could lightly rest my lips against hers and our kisses were gentle feathery, fluttery contacts that were almost chaste but caused us both to break apart breathing heavily.

"It was so lovely having you in my bed last night but you can't be there tonight, you know that don't you?" she whispered sadly.

"I know. Just knowing that you want me to be there is enough for now. I can wait." It sounded trite but I really meant it and I knew that Mum understood I was sincere.

We sat for a little while longer just gently kissing and touching and then went to our own beds. I was really tired but I lay for a long time just thinking about her, our love making last night and how we needed to handle our time together in the future. For the first time since I was about twelve, I awoke in the morning to find that I had had a wet dream. I couldn't remember what it was about, I know that both Mum and Maggie were there somewhere, but my shorts were clinging damply to me and I felt more than a little embarrassed with myself.

Friday night we were all out. Mum had arranged to go over to Maggie's place for the evening, Emma was out at a disco with friends and I had fixed to meet, Colin and the lads from the Garden centre for a drink at the George and Dragon in Salisbury. We had several pints, went to Stoby's Fish and Chip shop and then sat in the market place with take-away eating our supper from the paper. I was a good lad's night out and the guys all got to know each other well. By the time that I got home, Mum and Emma were both in bed and asleep.

Sunday turned out to be a really good day. The weather was mild and the day bright and sunny.

What mattered to me was that this was our first family day all together since Mum and I had become secret lovers and I was bit worried about how we would deal with it. What concerned me more than anything was this was the first occasion that Mum and Maggie and I were together, their being twins, I was afraid that Maggie would sense that there was a new deeper connection between us.

My new relationship with Mum had not changed in any respect how I felt about Maggie, perhaps because they were twins they were two halves of the same whole and my feeling just naturally over spilled and encompassed both of them. Even with my new deeper bond with Mum I could not imagine having to choose between them, it would be just something that I could never do, and quite frankly I did not have the guts to think about it as a possibility.

Maybe because we had always had a very close relationship, Maggie, Mum and I, it was actually easier, because it was normal for us to be touchy-feely, very tactile and affectionate, and any small errors in behaviour between Mum and I were fairly simple to disguise as normal teasing or playfulness.

Mum and I treated our situation light heartedly but in reality it had to be dead serious and so we were prepared to make do with the infrequent, very secret touch or kiss. It was a waiting game we were both prepared to play because it was worth it. What was really hard was that there were things that we needed or wanted to talk about and never seemed to get the right time alone together to do so.

I bent the game rules a little Sunday lunchtime when Maggie arrived, looking great as usual. She was wearing a navy blue cotton dress with matching short jacket and blue stockings or tights with tiny birds embroidered on them, very smart and very fashionable, but an unmissable opportunity for me to tease Mum.

"Hi Maggie, you look terrific ... I love those stockings."

"Thank you Jamie, gallant as always," she chuckled and gave me a hug and kiss on the cheek.

"Don't encourage him, Mags," Mum put in laughing as she came downstairs after changing, "or the next thing you know he will be grabbing your arse!" She dug her finger hard into my ribs as she went past and skilfully trumped my play, "Aren't my stockings worth a mention as well?" She was wearing THOSE stockings again, I knew that it had to be for my benefit and it took my breath away. She was wearing a dress similar to Maggie's but in dark grey with a long cashmere cardigan jacket.

"You both look bloody marvellous, and I could ravish both of you right now," I laughed putting an arm around each of them, hugging them tightly to me.

Mum went to the bottom of the stairs to chivvy Emma along whilst Maggie and I walked out to the car, we were taking her Range Rover as it was more comfortable for four of us, she handed me the keys and I guessed that I was playing chauffeur.

"It's Mother's Day," she said simply, "So Gwen and I can relax and have a drink and it's your job to drive, keep us amused and pay the bills." She added laughing.

Mum and Maggie got into the car and I waited for Emma to catch-up so that I could lock the house. When she eventually came out to the car it was evident that the delay had been because she had taken extra time with her clothes and hair, she looked really good and I told her so.

"I wish you would notice more often," she pouted as I boosted her up into the back seat, then turned back, smiled sweetly and closed the door before I could reply.

I had booked a table at the Barford Inn which was the village pub at Barford St. Martin about two miles past Wilton on the A30. It was a sixteenth century coaching inn which served a very good Sunday Lunch and excellent traditional puddings. We had been there before on Mother's Day and the landlord always presented the ladies with a single rose which was a nice touch. This year Emma had insisted on sharing the cost of the Mother's Day lunch with me, she was now receiving a decent salary but I knew that she was also saving hard to pay for her driving lessons and the deposit for a car when she passed her test.

After lunch we took our coffees and drinks outside to the beer garden and sat at one of the wooden picnic benches in the mild spring sunshine, Maggie and I on one side of the table and Mum and Emma opposite. Maggie delved into her bag and slid a large white envelope to me under the table.

"What are you two up to?" Mum asked.

Maggie prodded my arm, "Go on then" she urged. Maggie, Emma and I were all grinning like monkeys.

I slid the envelope across the table to Mum and then just watched her face as she opened it. She pulled out the contents and just sat staring, her mouth open. Emma was jiggling up and down on the bench beside her, she already knew what the packet contained and seemed to be more excited that any of us.

"Oh, my God, Jamie!" she exclaimed, "When did you do this!"

I had managed to get two tickets for the Royal Ballet performance of Giselle at the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden. In fact I hadn't obtained them at all; Maggie had acquired them through a friend of hers at the R.O.H. and had collected them for me on her last trip into town. They were good seats but the look on Mum's face made them worth every penny I had paid for them.

"I promised you an evening out somewhere special so that you could wear your new evening dress," I said. The performance was on the 18th. March, Saturday week, I knew that Mum was not working and I had arranged with Maggie that I should take the day off.

"Oh, darling, that is fantastic," Mum got up and leaned right over the table to give me a kiss on the cheek. Our eyes met for just a brief second but the full impact of the promise that they held was unseen by anybody else.

"It doesn't stop there!" Maggie enthused, nudging me again, "Go on tell her!"

"OK," I took a deep breath, "I've also arranged for us to stay at the Mountbatten Hotel in Covent Garden for the night with dinner before the ballet or supper after, or both if you want? I thought we could go up on Saturday morning and spend the day in town. It's all arranged!"

In fact it had been arranged twice. Maggie had originally made the hotel booking for me for two rooms, but I had telephoned on Friday and changed it from two rooms to one of the luxury suites, in the name of MR. & MRS. Riley. Well, it wasn't a lie, was it?

Mum moved round to sit beside me and I was squashed between her and Maggie both of them hugging one of my arms both had a thigh squashed tightly against mine and Mum had discreetly locked her fingers through mine beneath the table. It was just a surfeit of joy and affection and I felt the beginnings of an erection starting and so when Maggie suggested that we had a last drink before leaving I quickly wriggled out of the seat and went off to take a boner-killing pee before going to the bar.

Maggie spent the evening with us just sitting drinking coffees and smoking, all of us sat on the sitting room carpet playing Monopoly. Emma had found the old game in the loft some days previously, none of us had played in years and it really was great fun, we all cheated outrageously and laughed until we cried.

After Maggie had left and Emma had gone up to bed I told Mum about changing the hotel booking to a double suite but cautioned her that the others still believed we were having separate rooms. She laughed at my joke about being MR. and MRS.

"Well at least that is one easy thing. We will not need to use false names when we go anywhere we can simply be Mr. and Mrs. Riley and we have the passports and driving licences to prove it."

We were standing in the kitchen after washing up the cups and supper plates and I put my arms around her from behind and nuzzled into her neck breathing in the sweet perfume of her hair and then turned her to face me trapping her against the kitchen sink my lips seeking hers. The kiss was sweet and long but quickly turned deeper and more passionate our tongues twisting and dancing; my hands moved to cup her breasts, I could feel her tiny nipples hard through her dress and bra and my erection was pressed firmly against her stomach.

She pulled her mouth from mine. "I think we should go to bed now .... Our own separate beds .... "

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