Adirondack Heatwave Ch. 01byJanetG©
At sixteen they called Crysta piccola Sophia, for her resemblance to the young Sophia Loren. At thirty-nine she was beginning her third decade as the most beautiful woman not just in Scandicci, but all of Tuscany. One dreary September afternoon her husband, an industrialist, came home unexpectedly, caught her making love to the wife of a rival and threw her out. When the rival learned why Crysta's husband had thrown her out, he threw his wife out, too, and the scandal became public knowledge. Privately, the rival's wife begged Crysta to run away with her. Crysta refused and the broken woman left Tuscany on a train, alone. Crysta endured the stabbing tongues until her divorce was settled and then did the same, on a jet.
Her first stop was Anna's home in Westchester, New York. She and Anna and Anna's husband, Al, grew up together in the same Scandicci parish. After they married, Al took his new bride, already pregnant, to join the American Rossinies. Crysta had never quite forgiven him. But Al had done well - the Rossinies were the largest tower crane suppliers in the Northeast - and Crysta and Anna saw each other more than yearly.
The three of them discussed Crysta's scandal over wine, sitting at the kitchen table, the big house to themselves. When she described the scene that had so enraged her husband, Al asked one too many questions and she knew the story had aroused him.
"Have an affair with an American man," Anna said. "When the word gets back to Scandicci, they'll say, "She had a taste, but it didn't agree with her," and you can go back home."
But Crysta wasn't in any hurry. However sophisticated Italians thought themselves in sexual matters, their attitude toward homosexuality was still primitive. She'd been outed against her will, but that didn't mean she wanted to go back in the closet. She was attractive, educated, single and childless, and now she had a bit of an income. For the time being, she intended to live openly as a bisexual. Al thought she was crazy.
The family traditionally spent August at their summer home in the Adirondacks. Three days before the trip, Anna's mother suffered a stroke. A small one, thank god, but Anna decided to stay close for at least another week. She pestered Al into staying, too, and Crysta was given a choice. She could remain in Westchester: Al would take her into New York for a Yankees doubleheader and the three of them would drive up to the cottage a week later than originally planned. Or she could catch a ride up on Thursday with their son, Tony, all grown up now and living with his girlfriend, and Al and Anna would join them later. Crysta hated baseball and she hadn't seen Tony since his high school graduation. He called her Aunt Crissa, though she was only a family friend.
A heat wave blew in from the west on Tuesday morning. When Tony and his girlfriend arrived late Wednesday afternoon, Crysta was sipping Long Island iced tea through a straw, stretched out on a lounger on the flagstone back patio, shaded by the shadow of the house and oak and elm and maple. She was wearing a simple pink bikini. It was modest, unlike her proportions.
She set her drink down on the side table when she heard the commotion of the arrival. When, through the partially open French doors, she heard footsteps approach, she got to her feet, took her short robe from the back of the lounger and was turning toward the house when Tony burst through the doors.
He came down the two low stone steps, took her in his arms and twirled her around, the both of them laughing. He was four inches taller, forty pounds heavier and four years older than the last time she had seen him.
Holding her weight easily, he slowed to a stop. A series of reactions occurred: she had her hands on his biceps and she squeezed them; his pupils widened and he glanced down on Crysta's impressive breasts; he looked back up; their eyes met.
Tony and Aunt Crissa shared a confused moment. "So you found her," Anna said, entering through the French doors. Tony quickly lowered his aunt back to the flagstone. They released each other and took a half step back.
"Anna," Crysta scolded, putting on her robe. "You should have warned me."
"What? The boy has never seen his Aunt Crissa in a bathing suit before?"
"I'm not talking about my bathing suit. I'm talking about your son."
Anna beamed. She came to Tony and their arms slipped easily around each other's waist; hers ample, his trim. Behind them, a striking young woman stood atop the steps. She was every bit as well endowed as Crysta, a fact made clear by the halter top which she so nicely filled out and the high, tight cheeks her short-shorts barely covered. Her coloring was Nordic. Her Sassoon-ish bob was just above shoulder length, curled inward at the bottom, with an off-centre part. The cut left one eye veiled by straight golden hair. A blue eye set off by black lashes peered out from the open side of the 'do. In the manner of well built women, they casually checked each other out. They exchanged amiable smiles that said, "Not bad;" each woman giving the other her props.
When they were formally introduced, the girl, Isabel, came down the steps, her hand extended, and greeted Crysta in perfect Italian. She was, it turned out, Italian after all; Northern Italy, the Alps, near the Austrian border. By the time Al got home and they had a cold continental supper as a family, the two women were becoming friends.
* * *
Tony, Isabel and Crysta left the next morning. The temperature was eighty-two at ten-thirty, the heat index six degrees higher. Inside Tony's SUV the air conditioner was efficient, the sound system was crisp, the music selection was varied and the windows were tinted. The four hour drive passed quickly. Crysta let the other's lead the conversation. They were on I-87, an hour into the trip, when Isabel asked Crysta if she liked gossip.
"Only if I am the one doing it," Crysta said.
"Do you know who likes gossip?" Isabel asked.
It was clear she had a point, so Crysta played along. "Who?"
"The Rossinies," Isabel said, loud enough for Tony to hear but with her hand shielding her lips from Tony's view, so she could make a joke of it if she was crossing a line.
"Ah," Crysta nodded. She leaned to her left until she could see Tony in the review mirror. "So what has the Rossini family been gossiping about lately?" she asked, as if she didn't know.
Tony glanced up at the mirror. When he found Aunt Crissa already staring at him, he rolled his eyes in embarrassment.
"You know the family," he said meekly and returned his gaze to the road.
"Yes," Crysta said, thinking of the part the Scandicci Rossinies played in spreading the news of her scandal. "I suppose I do."
She sat back up straight and turned her attention to Isabel, who had raised the issue. From the moment their eyes had first met the previous afternoon, there was a tug of sexual attraction between the two women. Crysta was aware of it and it was clear to her that Isabel felt it, too. But Crysta wondered if Isabel had named what she was feeling. She knew from personal experience that people often filed their homosexual urges in the 'friendship' drawer until something undeniable and irrevocable happened.
"So what is it you would like me to confirm or deny?" she asked Isabel, her tone a degree cooler than neutral.
Isabel, undeterred, asked, "Is it true you have just been divorced for having an affair with another woman?"
Crysta was surprised by the girl's tone: she sounded concerned. "Yes," she answered.
"And there was a public scandal?"
"Are you okay?"
The question was so unexpected Crysta had to mentally repeat it to herself in order to process it. Once she had processed it, her answer was, to her, the least important part of her response. The important part was that someone had bothered to ask.
"I think so," she said.
"Okay," Isabel nodded. "From watching my parents go though just a regular divorce, I know it is a terrible time. To have it complicated by being outed must have been awful for you."
Crysta felt the unexpected sting of tears welling up and was glad she was in the backseat, where no one could see her if she didn't want to be seen. She reached over the seat and placed her hand on Isabel's shoulder. Isabel put her hand atop Crysta's and they rode like that for a mile or two.
* * *
It was mid-afternoon and sweltering when they arrived at the cottage - a beautiful, two-story log home with a second floor deck that wrapped around two sides. A hundred yards east was the stone Mainsely Cottage, another 'cottage' in name only: empty till Saturday. They unpacked the car, opened up the house and stepped out on the front deck. The heat was unbearable.
"You said it would be cooler up here," Crysta complained.
"Always has been," Tony said. "That's why we've never put in air conditioning. Global warming, I guess."
Isabel said, "Wouldn't it be great if we were on a lake and we could just jump in the water?"
Crysta smiled at the sarcasm. Tony, giving Isabel a bit of a push as he went past, ran down the flight of stairs to the ground and dashed toward the lake. Crysta and Isabel followed at a more sedate pace. They passed his shirt on the way; then a sneaker, then another. By the time they reached the shoreline of the narrow beach, Tony was already on the large raft anchored forty yards out.
Crysta pulled her tank top over her head and tossed it back from the water. The top of her two-piece swimsuit was a marvel of engineering that provided her large, and no longer young, breasts with graceful support. Isabel took off her half-top. She was wearing a bikini of a dark blue synthetic material that held to her round breasts like plastic wrap. Her breasts were fuller than Crysta's, but Crysta's were longer.
"We are well endowed," Crysta commented.
"Tony calls them my man lures," Isabel chuckled.
Crysta's shorts were baggy and hung to her knees. She took them off without ceremony and tossed them on top of her shirt. Her wide hips, in perfect proportion to her breasts, were strikingly highlighted by the low-riding bottom of her white two-piece. The fit was so close that Isabel wondered which method Aunt Crissa preferred; shaving or waxing.
Isabel wore faded Daisy Dukes. She unsnapped, unzipped, wiggled the denim over her hips, let the shorts drop to her ankles and kicked them behind her with a flick of her toes. Her bikini bottom was made of the same stretchy fabric as the top. In wiggling out of her shorts, Isabel pulled the back of her swimsuit bottom halfway down her high, tight ass. She didn't notice for several seconds. Crysta had no interest in pointing out the predicament and was disappointed when Isabel noticed and corrected her fashion faux pax.
"Can you swim?" Isabel asked Crysta.
Crysta pushed Isabel's shoulders, sending her stumbling backwards, deeper into the water.
She ran knee deep, called, "Can you?" and dove; flat and graceful. They raced to the raft. Crysta surprised the younger woman with her swimming ability and reached it first. Isabel used her final stroke to grab for Crysta's shoulder, to pull her off the ladder before she could claim victory. Crysta raised her arm at the last second and Isabel's descending hand slapped breast, not shoulder: and not just a slap. Isabel's hand plunged inside Crysta's top and for an instant she had a good grip on her boyfriend's aunt's big, beautiful tit. She closed her grip instinctively, crushing Crysta's stiff nipple into her palm. Isabel pulled her hand back and moaned apologetically.
Crysta giggled. Isabel left the apology unspoken and giggled, too.
The raft was large - 24X24. Built into the middle was a large rectangular box, the sides and top padded, like the deck, with a waterproof covering. Even in the hottest sun, the deck got no warmer than air temperature. The lid, which Tony had placed on the deck, had a large hole in the middle. He rummaged inside the box, brought out a patio umbrella, three U-shaped foam cushions and a bottle of sunscreen.
"We need fresh towels," he said to no one in particular.
The women let Tony fuss while they took in the quiet, peaceful solitude of the world unmade by man; sky, mountains, lake, forest.
Tony put the lid back on, inserted the umbrella pole in the hole and locked it in place. He opened the canopy, tossed the cushions into the resulting shade, grabbed the sunscreen and sat on the deck, legs out, a cushion at the small of his back. The women sat on either side of him. There was a bit of a breeze coming in off the lake and they were grateful for its wan relief.
Tony rubbed his thick, hard body with sunscreen. Crysta, sitting just behind the range of Tony's peripheral vision, watched. She noticed Isabel watching her watch and looked the younger woman in the eye. Isabel raised her eyebrows, her question unspoken but clear: nice, isn't he? Crysta replied with a look that agreed and followed it with one that said, "Lucky for you, unlucky for me."
When Tony was done and settled back, Crysta took the sunscreen. She reached behind her back, unfastened her top, slipped it off and placed it aside, leaving her breasts bare: free for the looking. She paid no attention to the others. She put sunscreen on her arms and rubbed it in, her upper arms pushing her naked breasts about while she looked out over the lake. Then she anointed her legs. She bent them at the knee and leaned forward to massage the lotion into her calves. Her breasts filled the space between her chest and thighs. Isabel glanced at Tony. He was watching his aunt. He felt Isabel's eyes and casually turned his head away to survey the horizon. Isabel smiled and resumed watching Crysta.
When Crysta was done with her legs, she put a line of lotion down each of her breasts, squirting extra on the nipples. As she was using both hands to rub the white cream into one of her big breasts, she felt it was time to break the tension.
Without looking away from the lake, she said, "In Italy, Isabel, most women of your age and beauty wouldn't think of wearing a top at the beach, much less on a private lake. The sun warming your bare breasts is like God's kiss."
She turned to Isabel, who watched her finish rubbing sunscreen into the one breast and start working it into the other. Using both hands the way she was, Crysta looked like she was milking herself. Isabel found the sight very erotic. Crysta seemed oblivious to her affect.
Isabel asked Tony, who had visited the old country often before starting university, "Is that so, Tony? Would I be topless if we were in Italy?"
"I don't know about the kiss from God part, but probably. If not, you'd be the exception, not the rule."
He was avoiding looking at his aunt. If he did, he would tent pole for sure.
Too late, he realized that thinking about why he was not watching his aunt had the same effect as watching her. He stood up, keeping himself turned from the women's sight, and dove into the water.
"Where are you going?" Isabel called.
"Nature calls," he said, swimming for shore.
Crysta finished applying sunscreen and stretched out. The mountain breeze caressed her; the sun showered her with warmth and light.
Isabel took off her top, applied her own sunscreen, moved her cushion next to Crysta's and joined her, topless, under the sun. Crysta was right, Isabel decided: it did feel like being kissed by God.
After a bit, Isabel asked if she could ask a personal question. Both women were flat on their backs, eyes closed, wearing nothing but bikini bottoms. They were outdoors, on a raft on a lake. There were no sounds but nature's. In the cottage, Tony masturbated in a hot, sun filled bedroom.
"Ask if you want," Crysta said, "but I reserve the right to be offended."
"Are you bi or a lesbian?"
Isabel was silent for a long time. When she broke her silence it was to tell Crysta, "I think I might be, too."
Crysta mulled that one over. "Does Tony know?"
"A bit. I flirt with other girls in front of him and he likes it. He thinks I do it to tease him and turn him on, and I do. But he doesn't know how much it turns me on and how much I've been fantasizing about actually doing it."
"Doing what? Cheating on him?"
"No, actually. I don't want to cheat on him. I love him, and he loves me. But the Internet is full of people having threesomes, you know?"
Crysta was surprised. Tony involved with a bi woman who wanted a threesome: Anna would never understand in a million years.
"You should talk to him, then. But not the Internet, Isabel. That's not who you are, or who Tony is. If it's going to happen, make it happen with somebody you both care for, si?"
Their thoughts drifted as the raft gently rocked. "That's all?" Isabel asked.
"I should say more?"
They drifted some more. "I guess not," Isabel said.
Crysta, so still, Sphinx-like in the heat and light, was lost in a revere of erotic longing. This was not what she expected when she chose to accompany her nephew and his girlfriend to the Rossini summer home. She had been sleeping alone for nearly two years - the longest period since she wasted her virginity on an attractive, inexperienced oaf a lifetime ago. This young girl, Isabel, the girlfriend of her nephew, was the embodiment of female sexuality and Crysta wanted her, desperately. They would be so good together. And Tony - who wasn't her blood nephew, but only her best friend's handsome grown son: it was close enough to elicit the thrill of the illicit but not so close that the thought repelled her.
Did you see this coming? she asked herself. When Tony spun you around on the patio and he was a boy no longer, and you both knew it? When you first saw Isabel? When, over supper and dessert and the wine that followed, you kept catching them looking your way, smiling? And just now, when Isabel announced she was thinking about a threesome with Tony and another woman?
Was this where she was supposed to be? Were these conflicted opportunities her chance to truly leave her past behind and enter into a new life?
"You do know that I am not Tony's real aunt, don't you?" Crysta asked Isabel, out of the blue.
A thrill shot from the very base of Isabel's spine up to her brain and exploded, lighting up new neural pathways like the bloom of fireworks lights up the night sky.
"No. Anna and I are childhood friends. I'm that kind of aunt."
"Oh," Isabel said. "No, I didn't know. Tony always calls you Aunt Crissa."
"Has he told you much about me?" Crysta asked.
"More since we found out you would be coming up to the cottage. Before that, he mentioned you once, early on. He told me I was the only woman he had ever met who was as beautiful as his Aunt Crissa."
It was strange, Isabel thought: having an intimate conversation with no eye contact. Crysta, eyes closed against the summer sun, had the same thought.
Unknown to Crysta, Isabel opened her eyes enough to spot Crysta's hand on the deck, close to her thigh. She closed her eyes and, after a decent interval passed, placed her hand over Crysta's from memory.
"It would be in bad taste," Crysta said after a while.
Isabel said, "But it wouldn't be illegal," and squeezed Crysta's hand.
Crysta squeezed back.
* * *
The preliminaries told Tony something was up: Isabel and Crysta working in the kitchen, almost falling out of their bikinis, flirting with him and with each other. He was wise enough to know that there was a vibe going on that he didn't want to even think about, for fear of screwing it up.
They had burgers and green salad for supper and played backgammon as they sipped spiked coffee. After several games Isabel wanted to go for a skinny dip before dusk woke the mosquitoes. Tony said he was up for it. He thought he would lose his mind when Isabel invited Crysta along and he did lose it when Crysta accepted the invitation. The women had decided something. What he didn't know was where he fit in. In robes and flip flops, carrying towels, they walked single file to the beach. Once there, they stood in an unplanned triangle. All three were breathing shallow and rapid. Isabel opened her knee-length robe, slipped it over her shoulders and let it fall to the ground. She looked into Tony's eyes, peeping through her blond hair. At some point in the afternoon she had brushed her hair out and it was loose and long about her elfin face. Her small mouth and plump lips were in a provocative pout, her light blue eyes darkened by passion.