Testing The Waters

Hardcore

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********

July 1995

“Can I at least walk you to the door?” the dark-haired man in the driver’s seat asked as he shut off the engine after engaging the parking brake.

“I’d rather you didn’t,” Evelyn Parker replied as, having already undone her seat belt before the car had even stopped, she reached for the door handle. Evelyn was afraid that if she let him do so, his next step would be to try and talk his way inside, and all she wanted was to have this mistake of a date behind her.

“It’s no problem,” Tony Reed said, trying to make it sound as if he would be doing her a favor.

The door swung open and the thirty-four-year-old brunette stepped out onto the sidewalk, practically slamming the door behind her. She didn’t apologize for possibly chipping the paint, or even wish her escort for the evening a safe trip home. If he hadn’t gotten the message by now that she never wanted to hear from him again, well then, he was more of an asshole than she’d imagined.

The message must’ve gotten across, Evelyn decided as, before she’d gone more than a few steps, the sound of burning rubber filled the air as the old seventies muscle car abruptly came to life and pulled away from the curb. The noise of the ’77 Firebird echoed off the houses that lined the quiet residential street as the fire engine red Trans Am disappeared down the street. Thankfully, by the time anyone looked out their window to see the source of the disturbance, it was already long gone.

‘God, this whole night was a mistake,’ Evelyn thought as she started up the walkway leading to her house.

Tony Reed was a longtime customer of her brother’s auto parts store, where Evelyn did the books once a week. When Steve had casually mentioned that his sister had begun to date again, a year after her divorce had become final, the classic car enthusiast had wasted no time in trying to jump to the head of the line of those who had expressed an interest in the attractive accountant.

Initially, Evelyn had been reluctant to accept his invitation, turning him down the first two times he had asked. She had finally consented as a favor to her brother, who had been asked so many times why his sister wouldn’t even give the forty-year-old mechanic a chance so many times that it was really beginning to annoy him. It was dinner and a movie; Steve had pointed out to her; how bad could it be?

She had quickly learned that it could be pretty bad. Instead of learning a bit more about each other over the dinner, which had taken place at a diner frequented by members of his Classic Car Club, Tony had gone on and on about how happy he was that the yearlong baseball strike was finally over. He was, he expressed, a Boston Red Sox fanatic and was lost without ‘his team.’

It hadn’t gotten any better after dinner when, despite Evelyn dropping a few comments about how good she’d heard the new Ron Howard film, “Apollo 13” was, Tony had insisted that they see “Die Hard with a Vengeance” instead. Evelyn didn’t have anything against Bruce Willis, and under the right circumstances enjoyed a good action film, but the testosterone fueled fantasy hardly seemed appropriate first date material.

As she opened the door and stepped into her small two floor Tudor, Evelyn was surprised to see the light in the dining room was on, prompting her to ask herself if she had left it on. Leaving her purse on the table by the door, she moved down the hallway, hoping as she did so that she wouldn’t suddenly find a reason to regret not having “Mr. Personality” see her safely inside after all.

Her concern dramatically increased as, once she neared the entranceway, she heard the sound of movement within the room. Cautiously, she peered around the corner and in doing so, let out an audible sigh as she saw that, while the room was indeed occupied, the face of her unexpected guest was a familiar one.

“Cathy,” Evelyn said, her tone a mixture of surprise and relief, “what are you doing here?”

“Oh, hi Evelyn,” the twenty-three-year-old blonde said with a smile as she looked up from the dining room table, upon which rested a large calculator and a small pile of folders, one of which was spread open in front of her.

Cathy Nelson was a recently certified accountant whom Evelyn had taken on as part time help. Having to do so was a testament to how well her business was doing. Normally, she came in on Wednesdays and Saturday afternoons, which was why her presence now was such a surprise.

“I hope you don’t mind, but I figured that since I was going away for the weekend, I’d come in tonight and at least straighten out the week’s files,” Cathy explained.

“No, not at all,” Evelyn smiled. “After all, that’s why I gave you a key, so that you could set your own schedule.”

“It was a last-minute thought,” the younger woman added. “I tried calling izmit escort your cell, but it went right to voicemail.”

“I was on a date,” Evelyn explained, remembering now that she had turned her phone off so as not to be interrupted.

“Oh no, he’s not here, is he?” Cathy quickly asked, her eyes darting to the doorway as if she could see out into the hallway beyond, worried that she might have interrupted the older woman’s plans.

“No, he’s far away by now,” Evelyn replied, “if I’m lucky.”

“That bad?” Cathy asked.

“Oh yeah,” Evelyn replied.

“I just made coffee,” Cathy said, “if you want to talk about it.”

“Coffee sounds good,” Evelyn answered.

-=-=-=-

“And then, he takes me to a diner that’s definitely seen better days,” Evelyn said as she sipped her drink. “Not that I would’ve minded so much, if it hadn’t been filled with his car buddies, all of whom he had to introduce to me.”

“He was showing you off,” Cathy offered.

“Big time,” Evelyn confirmed, “as if I was his trophy from one of those car shows.”

Cathy thought, but didn’t say, that Evelyn couldn’t really have been too surprised by that. The short haired brunette was a striking example of womanhood. Five six and a hundred and twenty pounds, she had a firm 34B bust and long, well developed legs. Even though she had only known Evelyn for a few months, Cathy had formed a strong friendship with her boss and couldn’t believe that her husband had traded her in for a younger model.

“And then, after the movie, he actually had the audacity to suggest that we take a ride out to Muldoon’s Point, as if we were a couple of teenagers,” Evelyn added.

“Muldoon’s Point?” Cathy asked.

“Oh, that’s right, you didn’t grow up here in Oak Hill,” Evelyn remembered. “Muldoon’s Point is a local make out spot just up past the bridge to Liberty. Did he really think that I wanted to relive my high school days?”

Cathy laughed, recalling a similar location in her own home town, not that she’d ever been to it.

“Do you know what the saddest thing is?” Evelyn added after a short pause. “The two guys I went out with last month weren’t that much better than Tony. Oh, they might have not gotten shot down mid-date, but they didn’t come close to the goal line either.”

Cathy didn’t need to ask what the goal line was. One night after they’d shared a few drinks, Evelyn had confessed that while she didn’t miss her cheating bastard of a husband, she did miss getting laid on a regular basis. Which, the younger woman had presumed, had been the motivation behind her decision to start dating again. She was curious, however, how the two men Evelyn referred to fell short, even though she didn’t think it prudent to ask. Thankfully, Evelyn was more than willing to share.

“All they had to hear was that I was divorced, and the automatic assumption was that I’d be an easy lay,” Evelyn said.

“Which of course you’re not,” Cathy quickly noted, thinking that was what you were supposed to say.

“Well, to be honest, given how long it’s been since I went to bed with someone, I probably am,” Evelyn smiled. “Still, it’s not something they should’ve taken as a given.”

Evelyn had also mentioned on that night they’d gotten drunk together that she hadn’t gotten laid since her husband walked out, nearly two years before. Cathy shuddered at the thought of being celibate for that long a time. Her own record stood at barely three months, and almost a third of that entailed her having the flu.

“And I’ll tell you, men can be worse gossips than old women, especially when it comes to sex,” Evelyn continued. ‘They can’t wait to brag to their buddies about getting a woman into bed, and it only gets worse as they get older.”

“I guess I’ll have to take your word for that,” Cathy said.

“Trust me, Cathy, you don’t know how fortunate you are that you don’t have to deal with men,” Evelyn offered.

“Well, women can be assholes just as easily as men,” Cathy replied. “I’ve dated a few that were just as bad as the men you’ve described.”

That Cathy was a lesbian was something Evelyn had learned a few weeks after hiring her. She didn’t go around with a sign around her neck, but neither did she ever make any attempt to obscure the fact. In Evelyn’s case, Cathy had simply introduced the dark-skinned brunette who came around to pick her up one night as her girlfriend. It took Evelyn a bit of time to realize that Cathy’s use of the term was different than her own, but once she did it was just treated as a matter of fact, and that was that.

“Still, maybe I should give some thought to switching teams,” Evelyn said with a touch of mirth. “Who knows, maybe I’d have better luck with women.”

“How much have you had to drink tonight?” Cathy asked, thinking that her friend was joking or at least it was the alcohol talking, recalling several bad dates where she herself had consumed more than normal just to get through them.

“Actually, I didn’t even finish the beer that I’d ordered izmit anal yapan escort with dinner,” Evelyn replied, “although by the time it was over, I wished I had, and maybe even had a second one as well.”

“You know, sometimes I’m not sure if you’re being serious or just joking,” Cathy said, still trying to judge which Evelyn was.

“If I was serious,” Evelyn said, her words becoming a bit more earnest, “what do you think my chances would be? Do you think some nice girl might find me hot?”

“Well, if I didn’t have Jennifer,” Cathy said, still exhibiting some levity, “I’d probably want to sleep with you.”

“Ah, it’s a pity the two of you are inseparable then,” Evelyn replied, “because I really need to get laid.”

“And you really think a woman is what you want?” Cathy asked, still thinking that this was a joke of some sort.

“Well, it’s been fairly clear that I’m not getting anywhere with men lately,” Evelyn pointed out. “So, why not give women a try? After all, it seems to have worked out pretty well for you.”

Cathy opened her mouth to say something more, but then closed it without doing so. Instead, she grew very quiet for several long moments, the expression on her face reflecting serious contemplation.

“You’re really serious about this?” she asked Evelyn, finally breaking the silence.

“Yeah, I think so,” she replied.

“You think so?” Cathy repeated. “That’s hardly a ringing endorsement.”

“Well, how will I know for sure until I try it?” Evelyn countered.

Cathy really couldn’t argue with that. Even in her own case, as certain as she was about being with girls instead of guys, there still was that small bit of uncertainty before the first time she was actually with one.

“Be honest with me,” Evelyn said. “If you weren’t with Jennifer, would you find me attractive?”

“Someone wouldn’t have to be single to find you attractive,” Cathy replied.

“That’s not really an answer,” Evelyn countered.

Cathy paused a few moments, her face reflecting a decision in progress.

“Okay,” she finally said. “I didn’t say anything about this before because, well, I didn’t think it mattered, and I also didn’t know you well enough to be sure how you might take it, but one of my friends did ask me about you.”

“Say what?” Evelyn exclaimed, surprised by the revelation.

“One of my friends asked me about you,” Cathy repeated. “She wanted to know if you were seeing anyone, and if not, could she get your number? When I told her you were straight, she was quite disappointed.”

“Back up a second,” Evelyn said as she took in what Cathy had just said. “Start from the beginning. When was this?”

“You remember the concert we went to over in Brookdale a month or so ago?” Cathy asked.

Brookdale was a town twice the size of Oak Hill, situated about a two-hour drive north of it. It was also where Cathy had grown up, so it wasn’t surprising when she ran into a small group of old friends at the show. A flurry of introductions had followed, during which Cathy seemed to go out of the way to stress that Evelyn was just a friend. Evidently, someone in the group took that to mean that she might be available. They’d only spent a minute or so together before they had to get to their respective seats; Cathy’s were on the opposite side of the auditorium. Looking back now, Evelyn had only a vague recollection of what any of the women looked like, but was exceedingly curious as to which one had been attracted to her.

“Do you remember Allison?” Cathy further asked, adding her last name to see if that helped, “Allison Carpenter?”

“I’m afraid not,” Evelyn replied after a few seconds of trying to associate the name with a face and failing to do so.

“She was in uniform,” Cathy then offered, thinking that might have made her stand out from the rest.

“The cop?” Evelyn asked, the image of the khaki clad police officer suddenly coming into focus in her mind.

Technically, the well-proportioned redhead hadn’t been a concert goer, but had volunteered to work security at the sold-out event in order to at least hear the music. A few inches taller than her own five six, the thirty-eight-year-old had a physique that certainly filled out the bland uniform, including a bust that Evelyn thought had to be at least a 36D. If nothing else, the image she projected certainly validated the old adage that there was something about a woman in uniform.

“Deputy Sheriff actually,” Cathy corrected, “one of six in the department.”

“What did she say, specifically?” Evelyn asked, her curiosity now in full bloom.

“Well, it really wasn’t much,” Cathy replied, now wondering if perhaps she was making a mistake mentioning it. “She simply asked if you were seeing anyone, and if not, could she get your number?”

“And she was disappointed when you told her I was straight?” Evelyn said.

“Yeah, I think she really was,” Cathy said.

“What do you think of that?” Evelyn izmit yabancı escort said, more to herself than to the woman sitting across from her.

“Like I said, I didn’t say anything at the time because I didn’t know you as well as I do now, so…” Cathy started to say, only to have Evelyn cut her off.

“Do you think she might still be interested?” she asked.

“What?” Cathy replied, surprised by the question. “I… I don’t know.”

“But she could be?” Evelyn further asked, a clear excitement in her voice.

“It was a couple of months ago,” Cathy stated. “She might have met someone since then.”

“It wouldn’t hurt to ask, would it?” Evelyn said.

It was clear now to Cathy that she had inadvertently opened a Pandora’s Box and Evelyn wasn’t going to let the topic go. Still, she tried to walk it back a bit.

“I’m not sure you and Allison would be a good fit,” she offered.

“Why not?” Evelyn asked.

Cathy took a deep breath before answering.

“I’m not quite sure how to say this, because she’s my friend,” she said with a slight hesitation, “but Allison isn’t really relationship oriented.”

“In other words, she’s a player,” Evelyn said, not sure if the male oriented term also applied to a woman.

“Maybe a bit more than that,” Cathy noted.

“A fuck ’em and leave ’em kind of girl,” Evelyn suggested.

“That would be closer to the mark,” Cathy confirmed, glad that Evelyn said it, not her. Hopefully, that would end the matter.

“I could live with that,” Evelyn said after a long pause.

“What?” a shocked Cathy said.

“Cathy, I’m not looking for someone to set up house with,” Evelyn said. “I need to get laid, and I’m starting to really not care who it is on the other side of the bed.”

Again, Cathy paused for a long breath.

“You really want to do this?” she asked one more time.

“Yes,” the brunette said with a conviction that hadn’t been there before.

“Then I guess I could give Allison a call,” Cathy said, adding to herself that she hoped she wasn’t making a mistake.

-=-=-=-

“What was I thinking last night?” Evelyn asked the naked woman reflected in her bathroom mirror.

She really didn’t expect her doppelganger to answer. If it did, she had more serious problems to worry about, but the look on her face said almost as much as a verbal answer might have. It was the sixth time she’d asked herself the question and she still wasn’t satisfied with the answer.

What had prompted her to convince Cathy to fix her up with another woman? The easy answer was that she was so sexually frustrated and desperate to get laid that she was willing to try anything — well, anything short of Mr. Auto Club, but, deep inside, Evelyn knew that wasn’t really it.

A fallback answer might’ve been that, like a number of women, she had a curiosity about what it might be like, and now that she was single again, why not explore that curiosity? But that would’ve been only partly true, there was more to the story. For the full answer, she’d have to go back almost fifteen years, to the summer she’d turned nineteen.

That had been the year she’d met Sabrina Chamberlain, a vivacious twenty-year old redhead visiting from California. The granddaughter of her father’s business partner, the two of them became fast friends, spending nearly every day of her month long stay together. Which, to most observers, was surprising because Sabrina was a party girl and a notorious flirt, while Evelyn, at least back then, was much more sedate and studious.

Most of the memories of that whirlwind month had become blurred over time, with the notable exception of the night before Sabrina returned home — that was crystal clear. They’d had an impromptu farewell party at a local club with some of the other friends that the Californian had made, at the conclusion of which, the fiery redhead had stunned the affable brunette by pulling her aside to a shadowy corner and kissing her. The sort of kiss that she had previously only shared with boys. As shocking as it had been to feel of the older girl’s tongue in her mouth, that proved almost insignificant mere moments later as, once the initial surprise wore off, Evelyn found herself returning the kiss with equal intensity.

Evelyn had kissed her share of boys, but there had been a magic in Sabrina’s kiss that she’d never felt with anyone before or since, not even the man she eventually married. The kiss seemed to go on forever, reaching parts of her she never realized existed before. To this day, Evelyn wasn’t sure of that kiss had been meant as just something in and of itself, or had been an invitation to something more? The answer was never to be found because, once they’d separated, she’d panicked and quickly left the party. Sabrina went home the next day and she had never heard from her again.

Returning her attention to the present, Evelyn was startled to realize that, as those memories had filtered through her mind, she had been stroking one of her breasts, teasing her nipple until it was hard. Her other hand hadn’t been idle either as it worked its way across the thick mound of hair between her legs. It hadn’t been her intention to caress herself in such a manner, but it was an act that was becoming much more frequent of late.

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