All disclaimers in Chapter
I was able to get in one last
sip of my tea, before she whisked me away to the garage. "Why are we in such
a hurry?" I asked, moving along at a much faster pace than I was accustomed
"I wanna get back before
Brandon does," she answered, opening the passenger door of her shiny black
"Where did he go?" I
inquired, as she helped me inside.
"I don't know, but when I
left word that we were going for a drive, Sammy said he was gone."
"I'm not afraid of him,"
I declared. "Why should you be?"
"He pays my salary, Faith."
"One which you don't
need," I reminded.
"Just get in," she muttered
and started around to the driver's side.
"I have money. We can move
somewhere else and I can pay your salary," I offered, as she got in and closed
"Gimme the cane, I'll get
it outta your way. It's just better that we don't tempt fate right now, alright?
Alright?" she asked again, after putting my cane in the back -propping it
between the seats- so it was within easy reach.
"Okay," I agreed, looking
over the infamous Rosa Lee, who was as clean as a whistle. "You always keep
her this clean?"
"I've been expecting you
for some time now," she said, with a sly grin, as she put her hand on the
back of my seat and backed out of the garage.
We seemed to fly down the winding
road leading out of Shady Grove. She braked to almost a full stop, waiting on
the gates, which slowly opened. She steered around them and then off into the
outside world we sped. It had been quite a while since I'd seen anything, except
the grounds of Shady Grove. It felt good to be out from behind those gates. But
most of all it felt good to be with Sara, alone.
I gazed out at the surrounding
countryside, wishing this were just a lazy drive in the country for us. Why did
Brandon have to rule my life?
I reached over and took her hand.
"I'm sorry I didn't mean to snap at you," I said, softly. "I guess
I just feel frustrated. He controls my life and... I don't like it anymore, Sara."
"I know. I don't like it,
either, but until you're on your feet properly and can take charge of your life,
he'll stay in control. Gaining your freedom, well
it might not be as easy
as you think."
"You talk about him as if
you know him well."
"I... uh... Sometimes I feel
like I do," she confirmed, with a decided frown. "I can
things... I don't know what to call it. But, I just feel he's... Well, it's just
not gonna be easy to gain your independence from him. That, I can tell, from the
way he acts. He loves handling everything. Remember the exercise machine and parallel
bars? I was all set to get you outta there, if only to the hospital and back,
he didn't care for you leaving the house. I guess it
could be that he didn't trust my driving
She glanced over at me very
briefly. I'm not sure what expression she saw on my face, but evidently she didn't
like it, because her tune changed somewhat. Oh hell, maybe I'm makin' a
mountain out of a molehill. All I know for sure is he's stubborn... very stubborn."
"Like someone else I know,"
I offered, pointing to myself.
"Yes, indeed," she agreed,
as she glanced over at me once again and squeezed my hand.
When we got to her apartment she
disappeared down a hallway, while I looked around. The place was rather plain,
simple, but decidedly neat. Everything was arranged to be functional for one person.
Missing were any family pictures, which added a homey touch to any house. The
walls possessed only the scenic paintings one could buy in any department store,
obviously for decoration. There were no books lying open on the tables, no shoes
lying in the floor and no shirt or other apparel draped across the chairs, as
would be the norm for an active home. Or at least, would be for mine. I glanced
into the small kitchen, and from where I stood, I saw no real evidence that anyone
lived here, except for the one used coffee cup on the counter. It was obvious
Sara paid rent here, but that was about all.
My legs were getting tired, so I walked over and sat down on the sofa. A few moments
later, she came out dragging a large box behind her.
"One of his associates sent this to me, she explained, as she dragged
the box into the middle of the room. It's from his office. I haven't gone
through it, yet. I didn't think I needed to. "I've been meaning to take it
to the house in Columbus, but I just haven't got around to going down there, yet."
I eased down into the floor beside
her, as she brought out a stack of papers. She halved the stack with me and we
went through them. We found nothing pertaining to Sara. We then proceeded to go
through all of it, but still came up empty.
"Maybe his personal papers
were at home," I said, starting to hand back the last stack. I caught a quick
glimpse of his birth date on a form he'd filled out some time ago. September 6,
"Yeah, I was afraid of that.
Now, I'll have to go to Columbus," she uttered, with a frown. "I've
never seen the house, ya know. I don't even know where it is. Oh well... that
can wait for another time."
"Good," I said softly,
as I scooted over a little closer. "We're quite alone here... no prying eyes...
no one's gonna walk in..."
"Uh-huh." She glanced
at her watch.
"Forget Brandon, please,
Sara. God, you made me wait so long and now we're here... alone... no one knows
where we are and... you're still thinking about him."
Her eyes darted back and forth
searching mine. "I hope you're right, Faith. I hope... I don't ever cause
any harm to come...."
I silenced her with a kiss. Our
passions ignited quicker than a match thrown into a pool of gasoline. Soon, we
were in her room, on her bed, making love with great abandon. I didn't know it
could be any better than the night before, but it was. We even took another shower
together -standing up- and despite my handicap, she turned this into a very erotic
and sensual encounter. The feel of her warm, wet, slippery body against mine was
an experience I wouldn't soon forget.
We ended up back on her bed; our
bodies still damp, my hair quite wet. I could feel the moisture seeping into the
comforter, even as I felt her warm, wet tongue leaving a trail down the front
of my torso. I had no idea what she was about to do. Without warning that warm
wet appendage flicked across my desire and set my loins ablaze. My hips arched
involuntarily, begging for more of this tantalizing contact. And I was soon rewarded
my first experience with what a knowledgeable tongue could accomplish. Sheer
A bliss I longed to share through
reciprocation. And even though oral sex had always sounded like something I would
never, ever want to do, I soon found myself going back on that erroneous
conclusion. And going down on her.
With the first stroke I was reminded
of that tantalizing taste that issued from her nipples. It only made sense that
these two areas were connected in some fashion. I'd felt this connection for myself.
My taste buds yearned for more of this tangy ambrosia.
She moaned with pleasure as I feasted upon her succulent, sensitive flesh, my
tongue delving inside at intervals to capture the exquisite taste of her unique
and intoxicating liquor. I held onto her bucking hips and rode the glorious, undulating
waves of passion, until she cried out in ecstasy. Her legs twitched, her whole
body shuddered and then she went limp. I stayed right where I was, unable -or
perhaps more to the point- unwilling to relinquish this intimate contact.
She shuddered once again from a long, languid stroke of my tongue. Oh God,
she pleaded, slowly moving away from my eager mouth.
But, I'm not done with you, yet. I wanted to say, but instead held my tongue.
At least, as far as vocalizing this thought. I could not, however, resist returning
for more of the luscious sap, still oozing from between her legs.
Oh holy hell! she hissed, when I plunged my questing muscle deep inside,
as if she were an ice cream cone; my tongue desiring to search out and savor every
succulent drop of her creamy molten essence. I wanted it all! I couldn't get enough!
Her fingers slipped into my hair, stroking and caressing, while I gently lapped
up the trickling juices. Don't stop, she pleaded now. God, yes
oh yes, just like that. Oh Faith
g-g-go-od!!! Her body shuddered once more, her legs trembling and closing
tightly about my head. So tightly in fact, I was unable to continue my ministrations.
Dear god, Faith
cum'mere, she requested, her hand moving around
to my chin and lifting it.
I kissed each inner thigh lightly, in a parting gesture, quite aware of the moisture
being transferred from my face, which was coated with her sticky juices. I wore
this temporary mask of my ardor proudly, while maneuvering up her body, all my
senses seemingly heightened by this awareness. She placed a hand on each side
of my face, her eyes growing wide as the amount of moisture registered with her
senses. She moved her hands over each cheek, removing the residue, then without
warning, pulled me down and commenced devouring my lips.
"Can I go with you to Columbus?"
I asked, as we were getting dressed. I didn't want to let her out of my sight,
at this point. I felt I would follow her to the ends of the earth, if she asked
"Don't I wish," she
responded, glancing over at me. "But Brandon will surely become suspicious."
"So what? I can leave Shady
Grove anytime I want. I'm well enough now."
"Let's not rush things, hmm?
You may be well enough for all intents and purposes, but... leaving will
create a strain, right now. Just take it one step at a time." she replied,
as she tied her shoes.
"In other words, you aren't...
you won't...." I paused, as tears filled my eyes. Evidently, she didn't share
my enthusiasm over our time together. "It wasn't good enough was it?"
I blurted out.
She glanced over at me and obviously reading my expression added, Oh, Faith!
" She moved closer to where I sat on the bed. "Good
lord, Faith, one has nothing to do with the other! Nothing at all. How can you
think such a thing? Her arm went around my shoulder. I've tried to
tell you, I don't wanna hurt you. I... Sweetie, listen
let me get this...
or at least some of this messy past of mine squared away here, okay? Otherwise,
I might not be much good to you or me. I mean
this is the first time, since
the accident, that I've really considered delving into this. I guess I just kept
assuming my memory would someday return, whole and intact, ya know.
Like the movies? I suggested.
Yeah, like the movies, she acknowledged with a heavy sigh. And
I can't say that this won't still happen, especially now that I'm looking into
I've been warned that it could be a very frightening and painful
She paused. Well
very hard on anyone I might be involved with, that
didn't know me before. Can you understand that?"
I nodded slowly. It was frightening
now merely thinking that if her memory returned, she might well have a lover in
her past and she'd want to go running back to her. Or him. The latter of
which would be even harder to deal with. And I really didn't want to think about
any of it, right now. I needed to concentrate on myself; getting control of my
life and allow Sara time to focus on herself and her past. "Do what you have
to do," I said, drying my eyes. "And I'll do what I have to do."
"I don't like the sound of
that, Faith. Sweetheart, Brandon isn't going to let you walk out of there that
easily, I'm afraid."
"How can he damn well stop
me?" I retorted.
Her eyes darted back and forth
searching mine again. "I don't know how, but... I just feel he'll try. He
dotes on you, Faith. And just like you and I wouldn't wanna give each other up,
I don't think he'll give you up. He's made you his world for the last several
months. And I doubt he'll give that world up so easily. Especially if you just
up and take off so quickly
with me." One dark eyebrow arched
I could hardly argue with her
reasoning, even though she made Brandon sound more like a lover than an uncle.
"Well, he's just gonna have to gimme more freedom. I can not continue
to live like this
in fear of what he thinks or what he...." I paused,
considering once again, why I feared him. "Sara, why do you and me... Jason,
all the rest of us fear Brandon so? I've never seen him angry but
once, when you weren't around that day in the hospital. But, he calmed down quick
She stared at me intently. "Honestly,
I've seen a different side of him than you. She looked away.
We've butted heads on several occasions over what's best for you; your emotional
your therapy. That's one reason I don't stick around when he's
"I thought that's because you dislike each other."
"That's part of it.
She frowned. But, it goes deeper than that, I think. Much deeper. The way
She shook her head. Well, he's just so damn pigheaded. Always
insisting on having his way. It's either his way or the
" She paused,
and waved her hand, as if dismissing this thought. "Oh never mind. You do
what you have to do. I only ask one thing: gimme a few more days to check into
this past of mine. Celia is my only link to my father right now. If you leave
now, or he fires me... I lose that link. I know that sounds selfish, but... Faith,
in all these years, I haven't really cared about my past, but now
because of us
I wanna know. I wanna have this behind us before
we start a life together."
Start a life together?
Then there was hope. I knew I needed to carefully consider her request. She hadn't
finished that sentence I assumed should have gone: It's either his way
or the highway. I wondered how many times he had threatened to fire
her? And if he ever did so, what might that mean to Sara's career, which she seemed
I reasoned I'd lived with his firm hand on my life for several months now, what
were a few more days? Especially since, if I was brutally honest with myself,
it wasn't Brandon I was trying to escape, as much as Sara I was trying to run
to; desperately desiring to be alone with her; have her all to myself. Which is
something that would not be easy at Shady Grove. I was allowing my hormones to
do my thinking again and that could be disastrous in the long run.
"Alright... a few days, then." I agreed, reaching down and tying my
shoes. "How do you plan to go about finding out about your father?"
I inquired, changing the subject.
"His lawyer is on a retainer.
I'm sure he can recommend a private detective. It's not just my father I wanna
know about, I wanna know about my mother and the life I lost."
"I suppose that's a good
idea. But, can you afford one?" I asked, remembering she didn't like the
idea of using her father's money.
She considered this for several
seconds, before answering, "My father told the lies in the first place
it's only right his money should be used to find out the truth, don'chu think?"
She immediately got up and retrieved
her purse, then went to the phone and punched in the numbers from a business card.
In a very professional, no nonsense voice I'd seldom heard her use, she got the
ball rolling. Where it might end up, she had no idea, yet seemed bound and determined
now to find out. And I could hardly blame her.
As I eavesdropped on her conversation,
I thought back to the date I had seen on the form: 1947. I did the subtraction
in my head. Her father would've been 45 when he died. And Sara was 32. It didn't
take a genius to see that something was very amiss, unless he'd fathered her at
the age of twelve or so. I suppose it wouldn't have been unheard of, but it was
very unlikely. Then again, that could be the reason Amy ran off. But, it didn't
answer the nagging question of why Tom had lied about where he had lived.
When she got off the phone, I
inquired about her knowledge of his age. "Did you know how old your father
was, when he... passed away?"
"No, why? What does that
have to do with anything? Come on, we need to get back," she added, extending
her hand for my support.
"According to the birth date
on one of those forms, he was 45."
"So?" she said, picking
up her purse.
"So, that would make him
13 when you were born."
She cut her eyes over at me, then
she got that far away look and stared down at the floor. "Damn, it just gets
more complicated, doesn't it? Seems the more I find out, the deeper the shit gets."
"Are you sorry I started
"You. This all came about
by accident remember? Celia's the one who turned over my little apple cart, not
We rushed back to Shady Grove.
When she drove up to the front door, saving me quite a few steps, I noticed Celia
was outside, sweeping off the front steps. She looked our way, then the broom
slipped from her hands, as her mouth fell wide open and she quickly clamped her
hand over it. I started to laugh at her odd behavior, thinking she must be reacting
to my being so bold as to go running off, without Brandon's approval. But then
her reaction took an ominous turn: she crossed herself in the Catholic manner,
her face turning as pale as a sheet. I glanced over at Sara, who had also noticed
her peculiar behavior.
"Celia?" I asked, as
I opened the door. "What's wrong? You look like you've seen a ghost."
"Ye-Ye-Yes, 'mum," she
stammered, continuing to stare at Sara, who was coming around the back of the
car to help me. "I
I thought I had."
"What? I know I don't look
like my mother without that wig."
"No, not you, 'mum. It's...
Sara turned to look at her, even
as she offered me her hand. "What about me?"
"For a moment, 'mum, I..."
Celia paused, as she reached down and picked up her broom. "
Miss Ashley had
cum back from the grave, I did."
"Ashley?" I asked quite
"Do I look that bad you thought
I'd risen from the dead?" Sara asked, obviously trying to lighten the mood.
"Oh no, 'mum, I mean... f-forgive
me, 'mum," she stammered, "But in those dark glasses, that car... your
hair.... It just
it reminded me so much of Miss Ashley, God rest her soul."
She crossed herself again and closed her eyes.
Sara helped me to my feet then
took off the glasses, placing them on top of her head. She squinted in the bright
afternoon sunlight. "Is this better?" she asked, turning towards Celia.
Celia merely stared at her and
then glanced over at me. "Sara doesn't look like Ashley, does she?"
"Yes, 'mum. I mean... No,
'mum. I... I suppose it's just the light. 'Scuse me, mum. My eyesight is not so
good anymore. And
I 'spect my mind plays tricks on me, from time to time,"
she mumbled, as she started into the house, leaving the steps only half swept.
Sara and I looked at each other.
I shrugged. I didn't know what to make of it. "Ashley musta had dark hair,"
I offered. "Maybe even a black Camaro?"
Sara nodded in agreement, but
glanced back at Celia's retreating form, frowning.
I ambled in the front door, half
expecting Brandon to be waiting on me - hand on his hip- demanding to know where
I'd been. I'd seen this pose many times, when I'd wander about the grounds by
myself and he'd come looking for me. But, to my surprise and relief, he was nowhere
within sight or hearing, for that matter.
I slowly ascended the stairs,
taking them one at the time, resting for a moment on each. The cane made walking
up stairs much easier. Yet, I'd had quite a tiring day and my legs were
complaining of fatigue. I took my mind off them, by thinking about poor Celia
and her reaction moments before. Surely Sara didn't look like Ashley, did she?
Then I realized I had no idea what Ashley looked like. I'd only assumed she had
features like Brandon and Jason. Matter of fact, I didn't know what Vivian looked
like, either. I decided this would be something to occupy my time, while Sara
went off to Columbus. I'd ask Brandon for some old photo albums and get him to
tell me more about our history. If I could, that is. Sometimes Brandon was more
close-mouthed about the past than Sara.
She soon joined me before I got
two thirds of the way up the stairs. Putting her arm around me, she helped me
the rest of the way. "I wish I could just sweep you up in my arms and carry
you," she whispered. "But, I'm afraid we might not make it halfway down
"You carried me in the pool,"
"That was different, water
creates buoyancy. Makes you seem lighter. Besides, you've put on a couple of pounds
since the days when I carried you around." I pinched her shoulder for that
one. "Ouch! I didn't say that was bad. Matter of fact, I think you've filled
out rather nicely," she said, glancing down at my breasts.
"Oh you, stop that. I have
not filled out up there and you know it. They just look bigger cause your hormones
are going wild."
"You can say that again."
"They just look bigger..."
I paused, as she cut her eyes over at me and we both started laughing.
Back in my room, she helped me
into bed. Dinner would be served soon and more than likely, Brandon would be coming
in. I touched the side of her face, as she leaned over me. I wondered what she'd
looked like before the plastic surgery. Not that it mattered. The thought just
happened to cross my mind, as I perused her lovely features. She'd said that her
father had told her she looked like her mother. "Where's that picture of
your mother?" I inquired, as she sat down on the bed.
"In my room, why?"
"Can I see it?"
"Why?" she asked, suspiciously.
"Oh don't tell me, Celia, right?"
"Well, I never saw the picture.
I just wondered what you might have looked like before the surgery. Kinda get
an idea of how my looks might change."
"Oh come on, you won't be
having major plastic surgery. They'll just redo this right here," she said,
tracing her finger across the path of the scar, which lay beneath my bangs. "And
I don't think that'll change your beautiful features very much. It'll only keep
you from being so self-conscious about it." She kissed me lightly on the
lips. Then seemingly could not resist returning for more. I reached up and pressed
the button on the remote, lowering the head of the bed, bringing her down on top
of me. "Ah, God almighty, Faith! I gotta get outta here...." She pulled
away. "You're a bad girl," she admonished, shaking her finger at me.
"Yeah, but you love it."
"Tease," she said, getting
to her feet.
"Sara," I called, as
she started away. "The picture..."
"Alright. To satisfy your
curious mind, I'll get it. But, like I said, you can't tell much about her. And
you have to promise to be a good girl, or
I won't come back."
"Cross my heart," I
A few minutes later she was back
with a faded black and white snapshot. I immediately recognized my mother; for,
I had seen many old snapshots of her. "This is my mother," I announced,
suddenly feeling very peculiar about this whole thing.
"Where?" she asked,
as she leaned over to look at the picture.
"Here," I replied, pointing
to the woman on the left. "This isn't your...?"
"Oh no, the other one,"
she assured me, as we both gave each other a puzzled look.
How coincidental that our mothers
had known one another. But, then again, this most assuredly meant that Sara's
mother had been to Shady Grove and was more than likely friends, or at least acquaintances,
with my mother back then. Yet, Celia had said she didn't remember Tom courting
anyone named Amy Jackson.
"Maybe if you showed Celia
this picture, she might remember her. Who knows, maybe Celia didn't know they
Sara raised her eyebrows. "According
to that form you saw, my mother musta been much older than my father. What did
she do, seduce a child?"
"Maybe I was wrong about
the date or... maybe it was a misprint or..."
"He lied? she finished
for me. I think he lied about a lot of things." She sighed, wearily.
"Well, just show Celia the
picture and see if she recognizes her."
"That doesn't mean that she's
my mother, though. He may have lied about that, as well." She turned the
photograph over in her hands, nervously. "Why don't you show it to her?"
"Your mother's in it. I mean,
she might tell you more, if
. she recognizes her, that is."
I nodded. Perhaps that would
be better, I thought. Then I could sensor what I told Sara, in case it wasn't
all good news. Now who's thinking about lying to protect someone else?
About half an hour later, Celia
arrived with dinner. As she wheeled the tray over to me, I asked my question.
"Celia, may I ask a favor of you?"
"A'course, 'mum. How may
I help ya?" she asked, as she took a step back.
"This picture," I said,
holding it out towards her. "Do you know these women?" I didn't want
to taint her perusal by telling her one was my mother. I wanted to see how bad
or good her eyesight was.
She took the picture and held
it out at arm's length. Then she reached into her apron pocket and pulled out
a pair of partial bifocals. Just as I suspected, her eyesight was failing.
"This one here, is your muther,
'mum," she said, without further hesitation, pointing to the photograph.
"Yes, I thought so. But,
what about the other one?"
"Umm... face is a bit blurry,"
she observed. "But, I'd have ta say this is more'n likely Miss Vivian."
"Vivian?" I asked, quite
"Yes, 'mum, 'pears to be."
She studied the picture closer. "Oh yes, 'mum, that's Miss Vivian, alright.
I 'member that outfit she's wearing. Your muther and Miss Vivian were fond of
riding, they were. Seen 'em together quite often."
"You mean Vivian liked my
"Oh my yes, 'mum. Who wouldn't
like your muther?"
"She wasn't envious or jealous?"
"Well now, who wouldn't be
envious of your muther's beauty," she replied, looking over her bifocals
at me. "But, Miss Vivian, she wuz a lady, she wuz. Never seemed ta let it
show. Not in my presence. Best I recall your muther was Miss Vivian's only friend.
Besides young Tom, a' course."
"Tom? Tom Randall?"
"Oh yes, 'mum. He took care
of Miss Vivian's horse, ya see and... you'd often see 'em talking from time ta
time. I 'spect she felt by Tom like he wuz a bruther."
"Yes, 'mum, they's 'bout
the same age, ya see. Mr. Neilson he
brought home a child bride," she
said in a conspiratorial tone of voice, as she looked over her bifocals again.
I could tell there was something she wasn't telling me. And from the way she quickly
glanced back down at the picture I knew she wouldn't be doing so, either.
"Are there any pictures of
Vivian and Ashley here in the house?" I queried after a short silence, in
which she handed the picture back.
she said, a bit hesitantly. "In
Miss Ashley's room."
"Yes, 'mum. Mr. Neilson he's...
Well, he closed off her room," she nearly whispered, glancing around behind
her, as if to make sure he wasn't close by. "I suppose that's cuz they never
found her b... She paused, clearing her throat. I think he still holds
out hope she'll return."
"Where is her room?"
She looked at me rather strangely.
Next door? I thought Brandon
said that was part of my mother and father's old suite?
'Twas, but Miss Ashley requested
those rooms after she came back from hospital. I suppose being in her old room
may've been a bit too painful. She put her glasses back in her apron pocket.
"Thank you, Celia."
"Yes, 'mum," she said,
as she started away, then paused at the door. "May I say, 'mum.... don't
let Mr. Neilson see you
Her gaze went towards the bathroom door the
door to Ashley's room was on the other side. He... he's rather particular
'bout anyone going in there."
Now she was alluding to being
afraid of Brandon, so I decided this was the prime time to ask about it. "When
Brandon gets mad, Celia, is he
She shook her head back and forth
rather rapidly, cutting me off. "No one likes to see Mr. Neilson mad. No
She was still shaking her head.
"No, 'mum," she said, glancing down at the floor, head moving rapidly
for a moment, as if shrugging off some unsavory thought. "Is there anything
else I can do for ya?" she asked, changing the subject.
I reasoned the type of behavior
she was exhibiting came from years of practice at being a servant and knowing
when to keep one's mouth shut. "No, thank you, Celia, you've been very helpful."
After Celia left, a thousand different
questions floated through my mind, as I picked at my dinner. Tom and Vivian? Now
why had Tom given Sara a picture of Vivian and told her it was her mother? Was
he merely trying to give her something, because she had lost so much? Then why
not give her the truth? Or was the truth too painful? If so, too painful for who
him or her?
After dinner Brandon came up and
I hid the picture underneath my mattress. I didn't want to explain where I'd acquired
it. He stayed until well after ten, never even mentioning the fact that I'd been
out of the house. Evidently, he had some closed mouth servants. Or else, they
just didn't like talking to him. He kissed me goodnight, but I knew -as did Sara-
that he'd be back with a glass of milk. He showed up as presumed and I took a
few sips before he left. Anything to get rid of him faster so I could talk to
When she came in, I imparted nearly everything Celia had told me. I thought she
had a right to know all of it.
"Damn, this digging up my
past is something else. The hole keeps getting deeper and deeper, but so far I
haven't found out anything that makes any sense. Other than the fact that he lied
to me, big time," she said, running her fingers through her hair.
"Want a diversion?"
"Celia said that was Ashley's
room over there. I gestured towards the bathroom and the room beyond. Wanna
go in and have a look around?"
"I don't know, get your mind
off this for awhile."
"You can take my mind
off this, can't you? Besides," she said, unbuttoning the front of my pajama
top. "I'll be gone all day tomorrow, the next day and maybe even Monday."
"What? You didn't say you'd
be staying that long," I whined, and stopped her on the second button.
"Well, I can't just rush
down and right back. I need to take my time and look things over. Maybe I'll find
something that'll clear all this up. Maybe... he's not the same Tom Randall, I
I sighed heavily. "I'll miss
you," I reached up and touched the side of her face.
She took my hand in hers and kissed
the palm. Then she quickly got up. "Where're you going?" I demanded.
She didn't respond, but merely
walked over to the stereo and turned it on. She put a cassette tape -lying on
top of the entertainment center- into the tape deck, pressed rewind and went over
to the door. I heard the lock click into place. On her way back she pressed play
on the tape deck. Soft romantic music, from a tape she'd made for us, filled the
"You staying the night?"
I asked, as she started towards me, untying her robe.
She shook her head. "Long
enough, though." She sat down again and began kissing me.
I reached up and pressed the down
button on the remote. The head of the bed descended slowly and so did she, right
into my arms. And this time, she didn't run away.
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