Dale was in a bit of a pickle.
It was one thing to be in Gloria’s bed every couple of days; he could even manage to fit in Lois a few times a week. But now that Bethany had entered his life—and with the prospect of bedding two other females at least once, and probably more often—he began to realize his limitations. My cock isn’t a machine—it does need a little rest now and again. I love all these women, but I don’t know whether I can satisfy them all by myself. I’m going to need some help.
And that was why he was sitting in a small office in Stamford, waiting to speak to Harvey Washburn.
It hadn’t been difficult to track the guy down. Gloria had said that her ex-husband had tried to contact her after his disastrous fling with his secretary, so that led Dale to think that he had probably returned to the New York metropolitan area in order to be within striking distance in the (unlikely) event that Gloria could bring herself to forgive him. A quick Google search revealed that he had opened a small investment firm in downtown Stamford, and it had been easy for Dale to make an appointment on the pretext that he had use for Harvey’s professional services.
In fact, he was going to take a crack at being matchmaker. He sensed that Gloria, for all her bluster, still had strong feelings for Harvey. How could she not? They had been married for more than twenty years. If he could effect a reconciliation, then maybe some of the burden—a very pleasant burden, admittedly—of tending to this growing cadre of women could be handed over to him.
The moderately attractive and very capable secretary, after speaking to Harvey through the intercom, gestured to the door of his private office. “Mr. Washburn will see you now.”
Dale got up, palms a little sweaty, and walked into the inner sanctum.
Even before Harvey stood up from his desk to greet his guest, Dale could tell that he was a big man. Broad-shouldered, barrel-chested, Harvey Washburn looked handsome and distinguished, with a sprinkling of gray at his temples and finely chiseled features. But Dale could tell at once—in the haggard expression, the lines around the eyes, the downward slope of the mouth, and less definable touches—that here was a man who was oppressed by worries and perhaps heading toward depression. There was also a paradoxical softness to his bearing that belied his large frame, almost as if he was embarrassed at being such an imposing physical specimen.
The handshake that Harvey offered—weak, flabby, tentative—confirmed to Dale that this man was not used to asserting himself.
“I understand,” Harvey said neutrally, “that you have some investments that you might wish me to handle.”
“Yes, well,” Dale began, seating himself gingerly on a chair facing the desk, “I guess I may have come to you under false pretenses.”
Harvey raised his eyebrows fractionally and gave Dale a nervous smile. “How is that, exactly?”
Dale took his time replying. “Well, you see, it has to do with your ex-wife. Gloria.”
Harvey’s expression immediately went blank, and Dale could sense that the man’s jaw was clenching. “What about her?” he said with barely restrained hostility.
Dale could no longer remain seated. Springing up from the chair as if he were a jack-in-the-box, he began pacing the room, to Harvey’s amazement.
“Look,” he said, “this is really hard to explain. You may get mad, and you may not even believe what’s happening. But please be assured that I’m here to help you. I have your best interests at heart.”
Harvey’s expression became a mix of confusion, resentment, and grief. “Just say what you have to say,” he managed to croak.
“Look, guy, Gloria’s a wonderful woman—there’s no doubt about that. I’ve gotten to know her pretty well these last few months—”
“What do you mean, ‘gotten to know her’?” Harvey interrupted acidly. “Who are you, exactly?”
It was obvious that Harvey hadn’t a clue as to Dale’s actual relations with Gloria. It was apparently inconceivable to him that Dale and Gloria could actually be . . .
So Dale felt he had no choice but to come out with it.
“I’m sleeping with her,” he said flatly.
“You’re what?” Harvey screamed, himself rising from his seat.
“Maybe I shouldn’t have put it quite that way. It’s a lot more than that.”
Harvey seemed to pay no attention to what Dale had just said. “You’re sleeping with my ex-wife?” he fumed. “How old are you, anyway? Twenty?”
“I’m twenty-four,” Dale said with stiff dignity.
“Oh,” Harvey said with pungent sarcasm, “that makes it all right. You’re only twenty-eight years younger than her. What are you, some sort of gigolo?”
Dale had been expecting a comment like that, and he was determined not to get angry. “I can imagine how it might seem that way to you, but it’s not like that at all.”
“I think you’d better get out of my office, you—you—” He couldn’t finish.
“No, halkalı ucuz escort wait . . .” Dale pleaded.
“Get out!” Harvey thundered.
“I want to help you get back together with her!” Dale shouted back.
There was a deafening silence.
“You . . . what?” Harvey whispered.
“Look,” Dale said earnestly, “I think she still has feelings for you—strong feelings. She wouldn’t be so mad at you if she didn’t. I want to see if you can get back into her life. Maybe not get married again, but at least be friends—maybe lovers.”
Harvey put a hand to his head and sat down heavily on his chair. “This is all very strange,” he muttered. “If you’re—with her, why do you want me to get into the act?”
“Gloria’s a fabulous woman, and I think I’m pretty close to being in love with her. But she doesn’t love me, and she probably never will. She did love you—and, if you play your cards right, maybe she will again.”
Harvey looked at Dale as if he were a creature from another planet. “But—what’s in it for you? Why do you want to do this? Won’t that mean losing her?”
This was the touchy part. Dale couldn’t exactly say, Well, it’s because I already have several other women I’m going to bed with—and I need your help with the overflow. That would be rather tactless—and in fact untrue. The love that he now felt for young Bethany was a genuine love such as he had never felt for any woman—not even Gloria or Lois, dear as they both were to him. So how to get that across without sounding as if he was just divvying up these various women like playing cards?
“I’ll take that risk,” Dale said evenly. “Long-term, I think it would be better if she was with you. I’ll always cherish her, but my circumstances have changed a bit. I’d rather not go into it.”
Harvey didn’t seem concerned with Dale’s complicated situation. Lapsing into what seemed to be his now customary melancholy, he said, “There’s no way she’ll ever take me back. She’s let me know that in no uncertain terms.”
“Don’t think that way!” Dale cried. “I know Gloria’s a pretty tough cookie—and I guess you hurt her a lot by, um, ditching her and running off with your secretary.”
“Oh, so you know that, do you?” Harvey said, crestfallen. “That was the stupidest, cruelest thing I’ve ever done in my whole life.”
“Maybe, but it’s not irrevocable. Really, I think Gloria was more offended than hurt. She has a lot of pride, both as a woman and as a professional, and losing her husband like that was a blow to that pride. But you can get over that.”
“How?” Harvey almost wailed. “I practically got down on my knees and begged her to take me back. I apologized until I was blue in the face. She just sent me packing.”
“Well, maybe it was too soon. She’s had more time to think about things—think about what her life is with you and without you. Anyway, I actually think she responds better when a man doesn’t debase herself in front of her. She’s strong, and she expects her mates to be strong too.”
Harvey gave Dale a kind of haunted look that Dale didn’t understand at all. Unexpectedly, he pulled out a drawer of his desk and brought forth a bottle of Scotch and two tumblers. He poured a hefty portion into one glass, saying, “I’m going to need this. What about you?”
Dale nodded absently, although he really didn’t want alcohol right now.
Harvey poured a smaller amount into the second glass and handed it over to Dale without a word. He took a big swig from his own glass, then poured still more into it from the bottle.
As Dale sipped his Scotch daintily, Harvey gazed at him with eyes that seemed to be getting unfocused.
“This is all very strange,” Harvey said, running his hands through his hair. “I don’t know you from Adam, and yet—we have this bond, don’t we? I was with Gloria for twenty-two years, counting the year I courted her; you’ve been with her a few months. And yet, I almost think you know her better than I do.”
“I doubt that,” Dale said modestly.
“I wonder,” Harvey muttered. “I don’t know what she’s said about me, but I have a feeling she thinks me some kind of Caspar Milquetoast.”
Dale wasn’t familiar with that outmoded term, but he got the general sense of it. “Oh, I wouldn’t say that. But sometimes she thinks you’re not quite as—forceful as you could be. You’re a big guy, after all. You could take on just about anyone and come out on top. A woman like Gloria—well, I wouldn’t say she wants to be manhandled, but she expects people to stand up for themselves.”
It was now Harvey’s turn to fling himself up from his chair and stalk around the small office, as if he was a squirrel trapped in a box looking in vain for an exit.
He came back to his desk chair and sat down heavily in it. He gave Dale a baleful glare as he said, “I’m not sure why I’m telling you this—but I’m going to say something I’ve never told anyone, not even Gloria. It’s halkalı üniversiteli escort the most horrible and disgraceful thing I’ve ever done, but I think it has a lot to do with the sort of person I’ve become.”
Heaving a sigh, and seeming to talk more to himself than to Dale, he went on. “I can’t begin to tell you how long it’s been since I’ve been obsessed with women. At least since I was ten or eleven—that was the time when, all of a sudden, girls went from being annoying creatures you wanted to steer clear of to heavenly if inexplicable treasures you wanted more than anything else in the world. And not just for sex—you wanted to hold them, protect them, talk to them, understand everything about them. I can still remember the names of the girls in sixth grade whom I had huge crushes on.
“And by the time I came into puberty, my passion for girls was all-engrossing. I literally couldn’t think about anything else at times. To touch them, to smell them, to kiss them—that was my sole goal in life. I lost count of all the times I jerked off while fantasizing about being in bed with whoever happened to be my chosen girl of the moment.”
“We all do that,” Dale said frankly.
“Maybe, but I seemed to do it more than most. Every day—sometimes several times day. But as for actually doing anything with a girl—well, that seemed to be impossible. Sure, I was a big guy even then, and maybe some girls like that. But I didn’t play sports, and my size made me feel awkward and clumsy, so I didn’t think I had any chance with the girls I pined for. Throughout high school, all I could do was look pathetically at a distance upon these divine creatures, so inaccessible and untouchable. I was terribly shy, and even saying hello to a girl made me so tongue-tied that they must have thought I was a halfwit.
“Things didn’t get any better when I got to the University of Bridgeport. There was an even greater supply of beautiful girls now, but that just made them even more out of reach for me. Whenever I did try to ask a girl out, I either made a botch of it by being too aggressive or I was so tentative that they just looked at me with a kind of condescending sympathy and said, ‘No, thanks.’
“But, miracle of miracles, this all changed. It was second semester of sophomore year, and I found myself in a math class with a girl named Margery. She and I—and I’m not being immodest in saying so—were obviously brighter than everyone else in the class, and we were not only allowed to work ahead in the textbook, but were asked to be informal teaching assistants to help the slower students along. The result was that we saw a lot of each other.
“But even then, I didn’t get any impression that Margery really ‘wanted’ me in the way I wanted her. She gave me no indication that I was anything but a friend—and someone who happened to share a particular interest and was good at it. I spent a lot of time in her dorm room as we focused on our classwork, and every so often we went out for a meal—nothing special, just a pizza or a sandwich. I didn’t think of these gatherings as ‘dates’—and I’m pretty certain she didn’t either. I never even kissed her when saying goodbye to her at night.
“So you can imagine my surprise when she wanted me to go to a frat party with her one Friday night. I never thought of her as the partying type, and I certainly wasn’t. But I wasn’t about to say no—any time spent in her company was a tonic for me. Well, we went—and, again to my surprise, I saw that she put away several beers. I had yet to taste any alcohol, and didn’t start then. We danced a bit, and I thrilled at the chance of holding her close. She was pretty tall, maybe about five foot ten, and slender as a reed—but there were curves there, definitely. Of course, I didn’t make any attempt to touch her in any delicate places—she would have slapped me silly if I’d tried anything like that.
“Well, she was a little woozy after those beers, so around eleven o’clock I thought it was best if I got her out of there. She grumbled a bit, but wasn’t in much of a position to resist. So I took her back to her dorm room. I was just going to leave her there when she grabbed me by the lapel of my jacket and said, ‘Come inside for a minute.’
“A tingle went through me. Surely, I thought to myself, she doesn’t really mean that she wants to . . .? I fought hard not to get my hopes up: remember, I’d never even kissed her!
“I led her up to her room, and she threw off her wrap and sat heavily on the bed, just looking at me. She seemed entirely in control of her faculties now, although her eyes were shining in a way that I hadn’t seen before. I didn’t know what was expected of me, so I just stood there like an idiot. The room was very small, and there wasn’t much in it except for the narrow bed, a desk, and a small dresser.
“Looking up at me, she said in a curiously bland tone of voice, ‘I’ll take something off haramidere escort if you do.’
“I was dumbfounded. I had no idea what her former sexual experience had been—I assumed she didn’t have much, since she didn’t seem at all the type to spread her favors around to all and sundry. Aside from the fact that she was quite beautiful—a soulful face that didn’t require any makeup to be ravishing, long blond hair that trailed down almost to her waist, gentle curves around bust and bottom—she struck me as almost asexual.
“Without waiting for a reply, she calmly removed her top—a loose-fitting blouse. She stared up at me as if proud to reveal her snow-white bra to my gaze.
“I wasn’t going to let this opportunity pass me by. With clumsy fingers I unbuttoned my shirt and threw it aside. She seemed to nod in approval of my wide shoulders and the fine down that covered my chest.
“Then Margery stood up and carefully unzipped her jeans, tugging them down to her feet. For a fleeting second I got a glimpse of some pubic hair, since her panties began to slide down as she pulled the tight jeans down—but she quickly hitched up those panties again. I saw a blush covering her face.
“Not to be outdone, I pulled down my pants and stepped out of them. She smiled and licked her lips as she looked at my thighs and calves. I could also see that she paid particular attention to my groin.
“Now, if she wanted to drag on this impromptu striptease to its maximum limit, she could have taken off, one at a time, the knee-length socks she had on. Instead, she looked me right in the face as she reached behind her back to unclasp her bra.
“The sight of those breasts—the first I’d ever seen—is burned into my memory. They weren’t large, but they seemed to me the quintessence of young womanhood—soft and round, with the nipples already erect. I was fixated on them for so long that I lost all track of time. The sight was so stimulating that I started to feel dizzy and wondered if I might faint.
“Margery expressed some irritation that I was not following through on my part of the striptease. So what else could I do but peel off my briefs?
“I think that startled her. I too had thick socks on, and it would have been more prudent if I’d taken one of them off. Instead, I stood all but naked in front of her, my cock as large and hard as it had ever been. She now seemed hypnotized by that rigid member, and couldn’t tear her eyes away. Her jaw dropped, and I could see little beads of sweat spring up on her forehead.
“That’s when she got cold feet. Bending down to pick up the clothes that were littering the floor, she said in a choked voice, ‘I think we’d better stop.’
“Seeing her bend over like that, her panties perfectly outlining the contours of her bottom, drove me wild. I now knew that she was a virgin, and she knew I was one. And this was the closest either one of us had come to any kind of sexual intimacy. Remember—I was only twenty. I’d never had sex, and was starting to wonder if I ever would have sex. I know that sounds ridiculous, but you can’t imagine the frustration I’d felt for years as one beautiful girl after another passed in front of my eyes and all I could do was stare hopelessly after them. So here I was, facing a nearly naked girl alone in her room—and she wanted to stop!
“Well, what could I do? I wasn’t going to force myself on her. Somehow I managed to get her to agree to just ‘cuddle’ for a while; and we did. I could tell that she was enjoying it, and so we managed to get each other off—first her, then me. But that was it; and we never did anything else again.
“And so, years later, when I met Gloria, I was happy to let her take the lead in sexual and other matters. We went to bed on our second date. She was naturally dominant and seemed to get a kick out of having this big, strong man wrapped around her fingers. But maybe she got tired of my passivity. We had sex less and less as the years passed, and after a while it just seemed as if we were going through the motions.”
“So,” Dale said cautiously, not sure what Harvey would say to the introduction of another delicate subject, “where did this secretary come in?”
Harvey blushed and had to take another big dose of Scotch to proceed. “Yeah, well, that was pretty stupid also. She was a young woman named Janice, who replaced a longtime and super-competent elderly secretary I had who decided to retire. I knew I was making a mistake hiring her—she was twenty-five, only a few years out of business school—but I was in my late forties, my marriage with Gloria was in a rut, and I let Janice’s pretty face and nice figure affect me. Oh, she was a good enough secretary, but I frankly hired her for her looks and not for her skills.
“She was one of those women—they’re still around, you know, in spite of all the gains that feminism has made—who seems scared of her own shadow and looks to a man, especially an older man, to take care of her. She obviously saw in me a father figure, and maybe I was a replacement for a father she’d never been close with. She didn’t wear a lot of makeup or provocative clothing, but I could tell she was a knockout—and, even though she had difficulty making eye contact with me, she knew full well that I was looking over her ‘assets’ every moment I could.