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First 5,000 words

 

 

Love for the Living

 

Brian G. Angevine

©1984/2010 Brian G. Angevine

 

This is a story of lust and love and includes graphic sexual situations. It was written at a time when I had lost a long term love and was nearly suicidal. This story helped me keep my sanity and deal with the loss in a more productive way.

            I believe it has some good images of male/female relationships. It shows how a chance encounter can lead to a productive relationship and then to a more controlling situation and with how that can be handled.

            This story is entirely fictional and any resemblance to anyone living or dead is purely coincidental.

Chapter 1

Although it was cold and ice rimmed the shore, for some reason the small lake in the park opposite Town Center in Kansas City beckoned Roger Carr. He parked his beat-up Chevy and walked slowly along the shore. The Lady of the Lake called to him like a siren or a mermaid. He stopped on the edge near the heavy woods that lined the stream entering the lake. He looked around and saw no other humans and heard only silence other than the siren call luring him.

The water felt cold and hostile as he slipped under the surface. It seemed like he had been here so many times before yet each time felt new and different. An unpleasant feeling. Each time he believed he was ready to climb out of the unfriendly surroundings something conspired to push him back in. Just today a lifeline was thrown that seemed like a cure-all, but as he tried to grab it, it turned out to be somewhat rotten and full of slippery places where he couldn’t quite get a grip.

            Roger was a dreamer, a real idealist. New ideas came freely and he enjoyed manipulating them to fit different situations. He really enjoyed change and thrived on it in spite of the hardships it sometimes caused. He had already held some twenty jobs in various fields and different areas of the country. His present job was exciting and rewarding when he was able to ignore his idealistic tendencies and accept the minor victories that came along. But he had been doing it for two years and already he was feeling the old wanderlust.

            Part of the problem came from wanting more income but still desiring creative flexibility. That balance between doing what you want to do and making money was a real problem. Somehow it seemed that when you did the thing you most enjoyed no one was willing to reward you in any realistic manner. The only option seemed to be to climb the hierarchical ladder to get to the high paying positions. But once there Roger had noticed that much flexibility was lost. Suddenly you were expected to be a corporate thinker, or more accurately, you had to be a corporate thinker to get there. One is expected to agree with the corporate decisions and philosophies whether they are right or acceptable on a personal level.

            As he despaired along these lines Roger felt the water closing over his head again. He was so frustrated in dealing with the realities of life that he almost welcomed the relief that death would bring. Bur then his lungs cried out for air and the old survival instincts took over. Kicking strongly he pushed for the surface. His head burst through the surface of the water in a shower of droplets. Shaking his head to clear his numbed brain the water streamed from his hair in a forceful, glittering arc pebbling the otherwise calm water. One diamond-studded stream caught the sunlight in a particularly intriguing way that attracted his eye. He watched the little jewels spatter into the dark water leading his gaze to a small movement on shore.

            It is strange how instant caution overtakes one’s thinking in unknown situations. Although Roger had just been contemplating death and had even attempted to bring it about, his cautious mind made him wary of the movement on shore. It appeared to be a person and he suddenly realized his vulnerability. His clothes were in a neatly piled stack on the bank where he had folded them when he gave in to the impulse to enter the water. Although there was no particular protection to be had in reaching his clothes, the fact that they were out of his reach made him feel exposed. In addition the intruder may have been observing him all along and therefore had the advantage. His previous dark thoughts were now filled with self-preservation and curiosity about the person on shore.

            Slowly he focused on the last place he had seen a flash of movement. It was up on the slope of the bank behind a sparse screen of trees and shrubs that had lost most of their leaves in preparation for winter. The leaves formed a still colorful but spongy carpet on the ground as they decayed into the fertile loam that surrounded the lake. There! He saw a spot of color that just didn’t fit the rest of the montage. He took a few tentative breaststrokes forward to get a better look. While the figure was quite motionless, as he moved the perspective changed, revealing more of the shape. The screen of the branches seemed to magically alter before his eyes as he maneuvered for a better position. The hard, dark browns and grays of the angular trees gave way to a softer shape in yellows and golds that shone in the early winter sun. Roger swam a bit closer until he made out the shape of a head crowned with blonde hair long and flowing over the shoulders of a tan all-weather coat.

            A sudden realization that he was totally naked sprang into Roger’s mind. He had often dreamed of this type of confrontation, with mixed results. When particularly troubled about his social ineptitude he would dream of waking up in the middle of a room of partygoers. Inevitably he was in his bed in the middle of the gathering, sans clothes. He always had the helpless feeling of being exposed to the critical gaze of those he was trying to impress and having absolutely nothing to hide behind. Sometimes he would awaken before any results came from the exposure. Other times he would dream of wondrous things taking place as he was totally accepted by the group and made to feel quite comfortable indeed!

            But this was no dream! Here in the glaring sunlight of midday caught literally, with his pants down. The cold water quickly sapped his strength. He continued to tread water as his college coach had taught him, with the slow figure-eight movements of his arms and the widespread pumping of his legs. “Like riding a big, fat cow,” coach Bayless had said.

            A woman stepped out of the screen of trees to the shoreline. Any hopes of going unnoticed were immediately dashed as her eyes focused directly on Roger. About fifty yards of cold water separated them as she beckoned with her hand in his direction. Roger noticed how deathly quiet was the day when her soft, “Hi,” carried easily across the intervening space. As if drawn by a magnet he began to slowly breaststroke toward her.

            “Isn’t that a little cold?” she inquired, standing with her hips angled and one hand resting at her waist.

            Roger didn’t know whether to reply or to streak to the opposite shore. Somehow the thought of clumsily rising naked from the water to gather up his clothes and run dripping wet into the woods did not make much sense. Although he could not see details too well at this distance without his glasses, the sun shining on her hair and the slim figure, even hidden by the coat, was enticing.

            Roger’s cold body shuddered involuntarily and his teeth chattered “Yyesss,” in reply.

            “Under other circumstances I might join you,” she said. “But I don’t think I could brave the cold today. Are you maybe a member of the Polar Bear Club?”

            “Nnnooo,” he replied stupidly.

            “Well, then, why don’t you come over here and sit in the sun with me? I don’t have a towel but the sun is warm today.”

            Roger stroked over to the shore until his feet touched the sloping bottom. He suddenly stopped as the water reached his waist. Remembering his nudity he stood there confused and shivering for a second.

            “Don’t tell me you’re embarrassed,” she said. “I’ve been watching you for quite awhile, now come on out.” She spread her arms slightly in a half welcoming gesture, undid the belt of her coat and began to remove it.

            Roger took the last few steps out of the water and stood dripping on the shore. He needn’t have worried so much about his lack of clothing. Nature, through man’s natural reaction to the cold water, had drawn back all loose appendages to conserve body heat. His penis was nearly hidden by thick, curly hair. From a few feet away it could scarcely be seen. Besides that her eyes were focused on his eyes. He noticed their piercing, icy blueness before anything else. He had read about the poet’s dream of eyes like limpid pools, but this woman’s eyes were positively arresting! They seemed to reach out and draw him in, unbidden, to some glorious feeling of contentment. Strange! A few minutes ago he felt such despair that he was willing to end his life. Now here he stood with a live, very vibrant woman whom he had never seen before, feeling something he had never felt before.

            She finished removing her coat and spread it out on the grassy shore. “Come on,” she urged. “Sit on the coat with me. It won’t hurt the coat, it’s treated to resist water.”

            Her voice sounded warm and caring with no trace of fear, loathing or sarcasm. That’s one thing Roger was really good at--analyzing the sound of a person’s voice and reading the real messages there. Many experts believed that the voice showed stress more readily than any other bodily function. Professional criminals could mask their feelings enough to fool a lie detector at times, but a voice stress analysis would reveal the lie. Roger’s musical background, with all his careful ear training, acted as his own personal voice stress analyzer. And in this woman the message seemed clear—come, join me, I won’t bite.

            She nudged her shoes off with her toes and sat down on the coat with her legs angled off to the side, leaning on her right arm. The action drew Roger’s gaze to her legs. He stood openmouthed, breathing raggedly from the cold and exertion, letting his eyes travel slowly. From the rather small feet, his eyes slid over the trim ankles and caressed her shapely calf, encased in glistening nylon. The hem of her beige skirt arrested his visual journey, and he jerked guiltily, realizing how ridiculous he must look. He shifted quickly to her face and saw a bemused smile and dancing merriment in her eyes.

            “Are you just going to stand there or will you join me?” she teased.

            He crossed quickly to the coat and sat with his back to her, knees and hands crossed tightly over his crotch. Totally self-conscious now, he felt the prickles of shame crawling up his back and making the hairs on his neck stand out. He was sure his ears were scarlet and he felt suddenly warm in spite of the cold water still sending rivulets down his body.

            He heard her move behind him as she sat up to look over his shoulder. “I would like to see your face,” she murmured. “I would say that you are blushing, except the red doesn’t show well through the blue and the goose bumps. You must be freezing and we need to get you warmed up quickly.”

            Roger couldn’t resist turning to look into her eyes. Again, he could not believe that she was really there, and really being so open and accepting. His eyes grew wide as she untied the crossing panels of her burgundy, silk blouse. The softly draped cloth, richly colored, hid the womanly form beneath, but as she unfastened the small buttons her pale skin began to appear. Although completely undone the billowy fabric still held secrets while her carefully manicured, burgundy nails worked at the small cuff buttons. Deftly she freed the three buttons on each tight cuff and began pulling the blouse from her waistband. Squaring her shoulders and rocking back on her hips, she pulled the blouse from her body and reached behind her to tug at the long sleeves. The action pushed her breasts prominently forward and strained the fabric of her burgundy, lacy bra. Although not especially large her breasts were full and swelled around the top of the plunging, front-hooked garment. The nipples were barely concealed by the sheer material and the outline of each round button could be seen slightly bulging the translucence.

            By now Roger was turning toward her in amazement. He looked again at her face searching for some condemnation or negative reaction. Instead he saw only calm acceptance in her eyes and a slight smile on her lips stained to match her nails and clothing. Her smile held no hint of lasciviousness or contempt, or bitterness. She was not trying to entice him with her lips, her mouth formed a simple smile of self-assurance—an open, trusting look.

            The woman’s hands carefully folded the soft blouse and placed it on the ground, then moved to the belt encircling the beige, wool skirt. Roger was entranced watching the belt buckle, then the fastener at the back of the skirt being undone. He heard the promising whisper of the zipper being pulled and the brush of fabric against fabric as she pulled the tight skirt over her hips, leaving a lacy half-slip behind. Working the slip down with her thumbs hooked in the elastic waistband, the woman gradually revealed a whimsical garter belt holding up expensive nylon stockings. Although he realized panty hose were more convenient and had nearly displaced the old-fashioned garter belt and hose, Roger was pleased to see the soft femininity of the older style. Releasing the tightly held stockings from their catches, the woman carefully rolled the stockings down her trim, firm legs and off her polished toenails. Shedding the garter belt she turned to him in brief, bikini panties that matched the lacy bra. “Now, let’s get you warm,” she said quietly.

            As she pulled him close to her and lay back on the coat she said, “I read someplace that the quickest way to warm up a person in danger of hypothermia is to establish close body contact and share your own body heat with the victim. Brrr! You are freezing!”

            Roger could feel the soft swelling of her breasts covered by the thin bra pushing against his own hairy chest. His temperature and something else far more obvious began to rise. Conflicting feelings raced in his brain as her silky, strong thighs pressed against his.

            Love and sex had always been strongly intermingled in Roger’s mind. Although he had always had strong lust for strangers that appeared beautiful and sexy to him, he had mostly avoided casual sexual contact. For some unknown reason he always got heavily emotionally involved with his partners before having sex, and had never participated in the one-night-stand, self-indulgence of the seemingly normal man. Now some of the old guilt feelings were wracking his brain and threatening his urge to complete the natural course of events.

            True to form the woman sensed his predicament and pressed closer to him, nestling him between her warm thighs and gently squeezing her legs together. “I think you’re getting warmer,” she whispered huskily, breathing her warm breath into his ear. Her head was slightly above his and her soft, blonde hair brushed his neck and shielded his eyes from the sun. She had rejected the current notion of a nice hairdo—the kinky mass of permed curls—and had opted instead for soft waves cascading down from the crown of her head. The sun made the curving, wavy mass glisten with golden, flashing highlights that looked almost metallic in their shining, but were soft and gentle to the touch. As their body heat mingled and the sun warmed their exposed skin Roger was aware of a wonderful, fresh fragrance all about the woman. Part of it emanated from the hair that streamed down all around his face, and part from the silky firmness of the smooth skin that was pressed along the full length of his body. She peered deeply into his eyes from a mere few inches away and said, “Well, I think you will survive this ordeal.”

            Roger was dazed by her actions, her beauty and the confusion in his mind about how this all came about. It occurred to him that it might be another one of his fantastic dreams. Maybe my body is trying to tell me that it is cold and I need to pull up the blanket. Or maybe the real urge is to get up and go to the bathroom. He fully opened his eyes and saw her glorious radiant hair concealing his vision. Taking stock of his surroundings and senses he found himself very definitely awake and in the arms of a beautiful woman. Pulling away he tried to rise in embarrassment, believing he must have forced himself on her in some way.

            She did not allow him to back away but instead pulled him tighter in her embrace. “I don’t think you are fully recovered yet, are you?”

            “Why are you doing this?” he questioned. “Are you a hooker or something? I don’t have any money.”

            She threw her head back and laughed. The sound was incongruous to the situation. How could she laugh at a time like this? Something must be seriously wrong with this woman to strip and cuddle a stranger.

            “To tell you the truth, I don’t know why I am doing this,” she said. “You looked like you needed help and I decided I was the only one around to give it to you.”

            “But you took off your clothes and all. What’s the deal?”

            “I didn’t want to ruin them. They are very expensive clothes and I would like to wear them again. Now just lie down and let me finish warming you up. I don’t want to lose my very first patient to hypothermia.”

            Still concerned Roger reclined and allowed her to envelop him again. For some reason she placed her lips lightly against his cheek causing his body to shiver with excitement. “Oh my goodness,” she cried. “You are still shivering.”

            Roger didn’t correct her faulty reasoning. He was shivering but no longer from the cold. Again he tried to pull away sensing that something was wrong about this whole scenario. Instead of letting him go the woman suddenly kissed him full on the mouth holding the embrace for several seconds. Now he was really dazed but less plagued by guilt feelings. His eyes opened wide as he stared at her face. But still he saw no conflict of emotions in her. He felt her pulling away now and almost clutched at her to keep her close. She placed her left hand gently against his chest and whispered, “Relax. I’m not going anyplace.” Pulling back slightly she worked the panties over her hips with one hand keeping the other braced across his chest almost pinning him down.

            “What are you doing?” a strangled sound came out of his throat.

            “I just felt we should be on equal footing, so to speak. You have no clothes on so I decided to get comfortable too.” Rolling over astride him she braced her arms against his chest in a half sitting posture. Roger finally got the hint and found the clasp of her front closing bra and released it with trembling fingers. Beautiful firm/soft breasts spilled out of their confines welcoming his eager hands. Already erect nipples seemed to strain forward toward his caressing fingers. His mouth captured one nipple as her hips slowly moved toward the center of his universe—or so it seemed right now. He was not sure whether she helped him enter or whether it just happened that they joined but his whole being was definitely focused on one spot now. Pure, natural electricity coursed through his body and no thoughts entered his mind.

Chapter 2

           

Roger gradually returned to reality as he felt her stirring next to him. Reaching for her warm body he was disgruntled to feel her pull gently away.

            “I really must get back to work,” she said as she put on her underclothes.

            In panic Roger realized he might never see her again. He expanded on his inept conversation by stammering, “But, I—I don’t even know you!”

            Flashing a wicked smile, she said, “That didn’t bother you a few minutes ago!”

            “But—can’t I see you again?”

            “That might be arranged. Actually, I think I’d like that.”

            “Well, what’s your name? Or how can I find you?” He felt like such a fool. Usually he avoided talking to beautiful women because of this very fact. He seemed to stumble over words until his basic shyness and lack of social graces turned them away. She didn’t seem one bit perturbed though as she reached into her small handbag to extract a business card. She handed it to him without comment.

            “Jennifer Begal,” he read. “The Treasure Chest, Antique Jewelry.”

            She chuckled and said, “Well, you’re close. It’s BeGal, with the emphasis on the last syllable.”

            “BeGal,” he repeated, again feeling very foolish. “Is this your business?”

            “Yes, I started it a few years ago because I was so fascinated with my Mother’s and Grandmother’s old keepsakes. Sorting through them after their deaths left me with a very unusual feeling—one of almost awe. I began attending estate auctions when old women died. It seemed very easy to sort out the real good stuff from the trashy bangles. Soon I had quite a collection.”

            With his usual flair for returning to a moot point, Roger said, “Oh, they are both dead?

            She turned to look at his face as she detected the note of remorse in his voice. “Yes,” she replied. “They’re both dead.”

            “Oh, I’m sorry,” he mumbled.

            “No problem,” she said. “I really think most people make too big a deal about death. It happens to be a natural part of life, and sometimes very necessary.”

            Roger stared at the ground in self-pity. Not only had he placed undue emphasis on his own death through attempted suicide, he was now making a mockery out of a basic conversation. Jennifer stood over him, now fully clothed, and said, “May I have my coat back?”

            Roger jumped to his feet as the embarrassment flooded back. Again he was stark naked while she was fully clothed and a flush of shame colored his cheeks. He picked up her stained coat and looked with remorse at the spotted area. “Looks like it is due for a cleaning,” he said.

            “No problem,” she repeated. “There is a cleaner in the Town Square where my shop is.”

            Roger stood with his hands clasped, he hoped, casually over his crotch. Jennifer again smiled her knowing smile and stood back casting a head to toe appraisal of him.

            “Not bad,” she said. “By the way, what is your name?”

            “Roger Carr,” Roger said, again acutely aware of his lack of conversational ability.

            “So call me, Roger,” she said, and melted quickly into the screen of leafless trees and bushes.

            Entranced, Roger stood staring dumbly after her. Clutching the small, engraved card in his hand, he finally broke his trance and looked again at her name. BeGal he mouthed. Jennifer BeGal. Incredible. Absolutely incredible!

            Reality intruded on his thoughts again. He looked around in his nakedness and then chuckled as he thought of others watching that scene. He shook his head and said quietly, “They got one heck of a show!” Roger began picking his way carefully around the shore of the lake. By the time he returned to his clothes his tender feet showed the trauma. He dressed quickly and strode up the hill to his parked car.

            He climbed in and realized he hadn’t even left a suicide note. Strange.  But he didn’t really know to whom he would have written one. In fact, that was part of his despair. He had no woman in his life and really few friends that he felt close to. There were no children from his first and only marriage, and relatives weren’t much of a consideration. His parents and sisters all lived far away and he never felt very close to any of them anyway. Roger believed that he had a real problem with women.

            Roger was certainly not unattractive. Many women found him quite good looking. He wasn’t exactly a hunk at five-ten-and-a-half, so he couldn’t be called tall, but when he was around his family he felt like a giant. Dad was 5’6”, Mom 5’3” and three sisters all very close to five feet tall. In normal circles his height didn’t make him stand out. His shoulders were very broad and he carried much muscle. Enormously strong thighs topped well-shaped calves and his upper body was well defined. Although his stomach carried a few extra pounds he had avoided the potbelly so many men his age sported. His hair was naturally wavy and thick and intense hazel eyes bracketed a medium sized nose. A firm jaw and chin completed his oval face.

            He liked to dress well but he was not foppish nor too concerned about fashion. Roger knew good clothing when he saw it and bought it when he could afford it, which was seldom. He picked styles and colors that looked good on him leaning heavily toward blues to complement his eyes. More than one woman commented about his eyes changing color with his emotions. From steel gray of anger, to soft blue after loving, his eyes betrayed many of the emotions he tried to hold in check.

            His large, strong, short-fingered hands were very expressive. Roger had developed a fluent conducting style when he led music groups and used his hands to coax the best out of his musicians. Especially when he directed choirs he allowed his own emotional response to the music flow through his hands and fingers. He drew a wide range of dynamics and intensity out of his musicians, and sometimes, when everything clicked just right, the people performed far better than their normal capabilities. Sometimes after one of those emotional performances women approached Roger with shining eyes and commented about his expressive, strong hands. He had a hunch he could have those women if he felt like it, and a couple of times he had proven the notion.

            Roger enjoyed having a powerful body and chopping wood gave him a sense of self-esteem. Efficient chopping required timing and strength, and Roger could add a final snap of his wrists to cleave the wood. Golf requires the same kind of timing and Roger took delight when he hammered a long drive and heard the gasp from his buddies. He felt smug when he was able to hit the ball much farther than anyone else, but his score never was spectacular. Drive for show, putt for dough, was the old adage.

            Roger played many musical instruments and found most of them easy, except for piano. He had a mental block against playing piano since he was required to pass a piano proficiency test in music school. He played recitals when he was very young but quit piano in favor of brass instruments. The problem was not in using two hands because he could play classical style guitar rather well. He knew that the professors let him pass in spite of his pathetic attempt to complete the proficiency performance.

            So why should a strong, handsome, accomplished man be so morose that he was ready to take his own life? Lack of self-esteem was the major problem and if people didn’t react to him the way he expected, he felt worthless. When he played guitar and sang his own songs for groups people often talked while he was performing. To him that was a major affront. He worked hard on those songs and expected people to listen. He just was not a commanding performer. Even his own mother stuck pins in his ego. “Don’t you ever write any happy songs?” she asked. Those comments are a death knell for most creative people.

            Evidently his songs revealed too much of his own turmoil and torment. Maybe the songs made people feel uncomfortable. It is very clear that a creative person who wishes to share with others has to have a tough skin. Roger did not have a tough skin.

            If only I could hit a home run in softball; if only I drove a sports car; if only I earned more money; then people would like me and I would not have lost the love of my life, Joyce. That was the crux of the matter. He had loved the woman for 9 years and he thought they would have a life together, but she decided on another guy. They had shared so much and grown together in their mutual quest for a changed life, but somehow he hadn’t measured up. He hadn’t dated anyone for almost two years and he felt worthless and alone and unloved. The cold waters of the lake seemed preferable to the cold sheets at home.

Chapter 3

 

Jennifer returned to the shop rather breathless. Her lone employee, Shari, while short of exasperation was not totally pleased at the long delay for her lunch break.

            “Gosh, boss. You get lost or

 

Here are the first 5,000 words. If you would like to read the whole story go to Amazon.com and look under Kindle content. The Kindle reader can be downloaded for free!