And I'll Get a PolebyRejectReality©
"You get a line, and I'll get a pole, and we'll go fishing in the crawdad hole..."
The chorus of young voices finally faded out as Nicole, her two sisters, and their seven kids made it back to camp from their fishing spot on the lake. Despite the still early hour, the heat was already oppressive. Fortunately, there was an easy cure for that.
"Okay, everyone put your fishing poles away and get your swimsuits on," Nicole said, gesturing with the stringer full of the morning's catch while she pushed a lock of sandy-blonde hair off her cheek because it was tickling her.
The kids all cheered and ran toward the tents — at least most of them did. Nicole rolled her eyes as her son strolled behind, doing his thirteen-year-old best to look cool. He was going to be a problem soon. She could just sense it.
"You sure you don't want help cleaning those?" her sister Wendy asked.
"It will be hard enough for you and Stacy to corral all of them. I can use the peace and quiet for a little while. I'm the only one with a teenager."
"I'm going to go get ready then." A lopsided grin spread across her face, and she surreptitiously pointed toward the corner tent of the camp before heading toward her tent to change into her swimsuit.
Nicole turned that way and rolled her eyes again. She crept up as quietly as she could on her youngest sister, who was hiding in the tent peeking out the screen window. Even though she was fairly certain of what she would see, a glance in the direction Stacy was looking revealed three young men — cut and shirtless — camped not too far away. They looked to be fresh out of high school, and she knew for sure that one of them was.
"What are you doing?" she asked when she was standing in the doorway.
Stacy jumped and gasped, her face turning beet red. "Nothing."
"Oh, give me a break. They're delicious."
"I'm sure Randy would think so."
"I'm married — not dead. And you're neither. You could do more than look and daydream."
Nicole shook her head. "I'm sure we'd have a lot to talk about."
"Who said anything about talking?" Stacy said and twitched her eyebrows before grabbing the zipper and closing the tent door.
Chuckling from catching her sister mentally robbing the cradle, she still couldn't resist a quick glance in the young men's direction before walking away. She had to agree that they were all delicious, but one of them had a major negative in his column. He was her manager's son, and if the apple hadn't fallen a hundred miles from the tree, she'd probably just as soon strangle him as anything else.
A quick walk brought her to the dining fly, where she gathered up everything she would need to clean the fish. Some of the bluegill were so small that they weren't even worth it, but the kids had caught them, so they'd end up tiny little fillets in the pan anyway. The largemouth she'd caught would make up for a few of them, but even the full stringer wasn't enough for an actual meal for so many.
The kids — even her son — were ready long before her sisters, and milled around impatiently. Finally, Wendy and Stacy came out dressed in their swimsuits, but covered by shorts and t-shirts. Whether that outer layer came off or not depended upon how crowded the beach was, most likely.
Wendy gave the marching orders and led everyone toward the cars for the drive to the beach on the other side of the lake. In the process of packing everything in a cooler before heading to the fish cleaning station, Nicole saw something out of the corner of her eye and let out a little laugh.
One of the young men her sister had been ogling was making a gesture with his hands, obviously talking about the size of their breasts. Apparently, that salient feature overshadowed the weight they'd both put on — not that it was much.
She wasn't so lucky, and had come out of the breast lottery less gifted than her siblings. She'd never had any complaints, but her chest simply didn't stop traffic the same way her two sisters did with their D cups. Fortunately, she only had one child and no husband to deal with any more, so she had more time to work out. She could wear the same size clothes she'd worn when she was twenty again, though the sprinkling of gray hairs and inevitable force of gravity on her butt and boobs meant nobody would ever mistake her for that young.
The three boys kept their eyes on her sisters, obviously engaged in crude sexual banter the whole time. She was going to have to tell them about that as soon as she got the chance. Finding out that they'd both abandoned bikinis in favor of one-piece suits this year had made her a bit sad, and showed self-consciousness that a little attention from hot young men might help.
With everything gathered up, she headed for her own car, putting the cooler in the front seat and the stringer full of fish into a tub she'd put in the trunk for exactly that reason. When she closed the trunk, she cast a quick glance in the direction of the young men's camp, and saw that her sisters weren't the only ones attracting attention.
As much as she wished it didn't, having them check her out felt pretty good. She'd all but given up on finding romance some time ago, and now she was getting discouraged with even finding Mr. Right Now, as opposed to Mr. Right.
Saying she was in a dry spell was a bit like saying the ocean was wet.
Between staying up late making S'mores the night before and the near constant activity all day long, the kids were dropping off fast as Nicole sat around the campfire with her sisters. She, on the other hand, had turned in early because she'd been up late the night before the annual summer trip, finishing something for work that easily could have waited — if her manager wasn't a bitch.
An especially strong breeze combined with the cooling night air to create a pleasant contrast to the heat of the day, but it had other effects on Nicole as well. She shivered, and said, "I'm going to tinkle."
Her sisters nodded, and Wendy yawned. Both looked tired, and likely wouldn't be up very long after the last of the kids went down for the night. Not trusting that there would be any in the restrooms, she grabbed a roll of toilet paper from her tent before making the short walk.
On the way back, the moon reflecting off the lake caught her attention, and she wandered off the road to stand on the shore and look at it for a while. While she enjoyed the quiet moment, she thought of a way to make it last a little longer, since she was likely to be up by herself for a while anyway. Decision made, she angled back toward the road while still progressing toward camp.
As it happened, her path took her directly behind the tents of their 'neighbors'. They were drinking beer and apparently hadn't noticed her approaching in the moonlight. She slowed and then stopped to listen, still completely concealed by the tents.
"Sort of look alike."
"Who cares. They're genuine Milfs."
"Just them, too. Camping and fishing with the kids."
"And hungry for some dick."
The sound of high fives followed that.
"Love to motorboat those tits. Damn."
"I'll take the one with the dark streaks. Fuck. Did you see her in that bikini?"
"Hell yeah. Love to put her knees back by her ears."
A crooked grin spread across her face and she chuckled under her breath, knowing the last two were talking about her.
"Colby hooked up with a chick like that last year. Said she couldn't get enough. No playing games. They just want to fuck."
"That redhead? Oh, hell yeah..."
Bemused that she'd happened by just as the three were talking about her and her sisters, she left when the conversation turned to other women — if not other subjects. She backtracked a little so it wouldn't be obvious that she was within earshot, and then walked straight across to the road. When she saw their campfire out of the corner of her eye, she couldn't resist adding a little strut to her step, assuming that they could see her in the moonlight.
The last of the kids had crawled into their tents by the time she walked back into camp. Her sisters were obviously preparing to bed down as well. "Done in?" she asked as she walked up to the fire.
"Mmm hmm," Stacy answered.
"Are you staying up?" Wendy asked.
"I think I'm going to take a couple of poles down to the lake and see if I can't catch enough catfish to get us closer to a meal tomorrow."
"Wish I could keep my eyes open. That sounds fun," Wendy remarked.
Stacy let out a snort. "And leave me with all the kids? I don't think so."
"Speaking of that... Would you mind if I slept in a little in the morning? If they're biting, and it's worth staying out, that is?"
Stacy yawned and waved her hand as she headed for her tent. "That's fine. You herded all the kids down this morning and gave us time to wake up. Not like you'll be able to sleep too late, once the sun comes up."
"Good luck. I'd rather have catfish anyway," Wendy said by way of her answer.
That decided it, and Nicole headed over to grab her gear. The three poles, battery lantern slung over her shoulder, and the bag with the nightcrawlers and some extra tackle was cumbersome, but more or less manageable.
The moon provided plenty of light for most of the journey, then the light from a shelter house covered a walk through the trees near the lake. It was only for the brief distance between where the light faded and the trees opened up to the lake shore that she had to pause and turn on the lantern to guide her steps.
Since this was the same spot she'd fished with the rest of the family earlier in the day, there were several forked sticks still planted in the bank, ready to receive one of her rods. She left the light on just long enough to bait her lines, which she'd rigged up for bottom fishing before leaving camp, and to clean up with some wet wipes and hand sanitizer she'd brought along.
After waiting a minute for her eyes to adjust, she cast all three lines and attached bells to the end of the rods. With her lines in the water, she settled down to wait for a bite, enjoying the dance of the moonlight on the water and the nighttime sounds of the lake.
The wait wasn't long. Within five minutes of sitting down, one of her bells jingled, and she popped up to set the hook. The catfish was about a three pounder, and a good start toward filling in the gap between what she'd already filleted and what they needed for everyone to have a fish dinner.
Once it was on the stringer, she baited the line and cleaned her hands again. Quite enjoying the night, she knew that she was probably going to have to force herself to go back to camp before it got too late — especially if the fish kept biting.
The sound of footsteps a short while later pulled her out of a memory of her first nighttime fishing trip with her father. Turning toward where she heard the sound, she could just make out someone coming through the trees with a flashlight, and heading in her direction.
The light kept coming, and she held up a hand when it shined in her eyes.
"Sorry," a voice that she recognized called out, and the light moved down to the ground.
Hmmm. Interesting, she thought, because the voice sounded like the one that had been talking about her when she eavesdropped behind the tent earlier. Unfortunately, the moment of excitement ended when he walked up and she recognized that it was her manager's son, Jake.
"Didn't think anyone else was out here," he said as he turned off his light. "You work with my mom, don't you?"
"For her, yes," she corrected.
Apparently picking up on the ice in her tone, he said, "Take it you're not real fond of her, huh?"
That was an understatement, but she held back on voicing how she really felt. "Well..."
"It's okay. We don't get along that well, either. That's why I live with Dad. She's a demanding bitch."
Nicole laughed, unable to hold it back. "You said it, not me."
He chuckled, and then gestured toward her poles. "Having any luck?"
"I've only been out here for a little while, but I've already caught one."
"Mind if I drop a few lines and try my luck?"
Not wanting to commit too much, because she was more than a little suspicious of what he was up to, she pointed and answered, "I'm cast off that way with all three of them."
"I'll pitch mine the opposite way so we don't end up tangled."
Not sure what to make of him, she acted as if she were ignoring him while watching him out of the corner of her eye. He baited up, cast his two lines, and then squatted down at the edge of the water to wash his hands. She wasn't really surprised when he walked back over to her afterwards.
"So, you out here with friends?"
"My sisters. We bring the kids out every year."
"Kind of like a split vacation thing? Get some time to yourselves?"
He was obviously fishing in more ways than one. Feeling a little mischievous, she dodged his attempt to find out if she were married by saying, "It's an old family tradition."
"Your folks used to bring you out?"
"Dad. Mom wanted nothing to do with it. She just welcomed the peace and quiet for a few..."
One of her bells rang, and she popped up in a flash. In the midst of reeling in her catch, she heard a higher-pitched ring and saw Jake jump up to run to his pole.
"Looks like it's going to be a good night," he remarked as he reeled in.
Nicole smiled when she saw her second catfish was bigger than the first — and his. "Looks like it."
She returned to her spot after putting the fish on the stringer and casting her line again. Jake wasn't far behind. When he sat down — closer this time — he held up his wet hands while she cleaned hers with a wipe. "Why didn't I think of that?"
"Because you haven't been worrying about messy children for years." She chuckled as she finished and slipped the used wipe into the bag.
"How many kids?"
"Just one boy."
"How old is he? Three? Four?"
After letting out a depreciative chuckle, she said, "Thirteen."
"No way. You can't have a kid that old."
"Oh, I'm afraid so." She had to admit that he had a great deal more charm than his mother.
"Wouldn't believe it in a million years if someone else said it."
Her curiosity beginning to pique, she asked, "So, how old do you think I am?"
"Oh, hell no. I know better than that," he said while holding his hands up in front of him in a defensive gesture.
"No, really. Tell me."
He paused, and she lifted her eyebrows to give him a look that undoubtedly said, I'm waiting.
"Thirty?" he answered nervously.
"Good answer," she chuckled.
"I got it right?"
"I didn't say that. I said it was a good answer."
He chuckled as well. "Really, you just look way too h... young to have a kid who's thirteen."
She caught that slip of hot coming out before he thought better of it. "Thank you."
"Just the truth."
He grinned and a shiver passed through her, raising goose bumps. His smile gave him a bit of a boyish quality, and only added to his handsomeness. At the same time, there was something in his eyes that was anything but boyish. Taken aback by the way she was reacting, she was on the verge of changing the subject when he did it for her.
"Dad used to bring me out here too." He shook his head and chuckled. "My sister never touched worm one. As soon as she saw that, she was out."
That was hardly surprising to Nicole, as she had met his sister. If anything, the young woman was even prissier than her mother — and more rude. "It was just us girls, so Dad really had no idea what to do with us. We all ended up playing baseball and fishing to spend time with him."
She laughed. "Hardly. I have a Barbie collection that would make you swoon up in the attic somewhere, but I still have my baseball glove, too."
"Mom's idea of spending time with her is cutting the grass while she has a strawberry daiquiri and complains about how hot it is."
"That sounds like the same woman I know. I've only met your father once, but I liked him."
"He's great — especially now that they're divorced. Mom just sucked the life out of him."
"Seems you take after him. I haven't had the urge to strangle you once yet."
That caused him to break out into loud laughter, and he slapped a hand over his mouth when it echoed back in the silence of the night. Once he regained his composure sufficiently to speak, he chuckled, "Oh, damn..."
A second later, one of his bells rang, and he scrambled for his pole. She knew she shouldn't have started flirting back, but it wasn't going to hurt anybody, and the thought that his mother would lose her mind if she knew was scrumptious.
He got his fish unhooked and started to string it up when it went into a last-ditch effort to flop away. He yelped and dropped it, barely managing to snatch the fish up before it got into the water. Unfortunately, that effort also resulted in him slamming his other hand down in the lake, soaking his shirt.
Somehow, she held back a laugh, saving him the embarrassment. Before he could string up his recaptured fish, one of her bells jingled.
The pole bent in a promising way when she set the hook, and she knew she had a fight on her hands.
"Nope," she answered as she fought to reel the fish in without snapping her line, growing more excited by the moment.
"Damn. Nice," he muttered.
She was winning the battle, but it wasn't going to be quick. With a tug, then a few cranks, then another tug, she slowly pulled her adversary closer to shore.
Then one of her other bells started ringing.
"Damn it," she spit out, putting a foot down on the handle of the other rod so it at least wouldn't get pulled out of the fork and into the lake.
"Want me to get that one?" Jake asked.
She felt his hand grab the pole, so she lifted her foot.
"Got him," he said as he set the hook. "Feels like another good one."
She knew she had to have her fish close to shore about the time she heard a desperate splash to her right. When she looked down, she saw that the fish Jake was reeling in was about the size of her last one. The fish lifted out of the water as he turned, bringing it up onto shore to remove the hook.
Oh my god, Nicole thought as his bare back appeared in her peripheral vision. Before she could overrule them, her eyes darted to his naked torso, which was rippling with lean, young muscle. She'd seen it before, but that had been at a distance. Up close, it was even more evident just how cut he was.
A jerk on her pole returned her mind to the task at hand. A few more cranks and she could make out the fish below the water. It was easily twice the size of anything else she'd caught already in the evening.
"Holy shit," Jake said when he spotted the fish as well. "Get it up to shore and I'll grab it. The minnow is still hooked. Can worry about him later."
Nicole's arms were beginning to burn, and she was glad not to have to lift the big cat up out of the water. Jake planted a foot right at the edge of the water and squatted down at her feet. Once again, her eyes devoured him and she felt a triplet of tingles — one from each of her stiffening nipples and the last between her legs. More or less on autopilot as her hormones raged, she pulled the fish in close enough for him to grab it.
"Ten pounds easy," he said as he stood. Then he looked at her and grinned.
Nicole saw him flex a little, and knew she'd been caught. Her cheeks burning, she had little choice but to spin and keep him in sight as he walked the fish farther up the shore. She was at least able to let the rod tip drop, relieving her arms and shoulders.