I was born and raised in a rural county in the hills of Tennessee. My parents named me Brian Patrick Donovan after my two grandfathers. The youngest child, I had two older brothers and two older sisters.
Daddy worked in a sawmill and drove a log truck on the side. Mom was a stay-at-home housewife until I started school. Then she got a job at a poultry processing plant. Both of my parents worked hard to support our family. We always had enough to eat and clean clothes in good repair even if they weren’t the latest styles. For any more than that our parents expected us to earn our own way in the world. We lived in the old farmhouse that my paternal grandparents had left to my parents. The property included about 100 acres that had once been part of a larger working farm. Now my parents had a large kitchen garden and a small fruit orchard, but they had given up farming as a way of making a living.
By the time I completed high school, both of my sisters, Mary Ellen and Kathleen Rose, had married and had children of their own. My oldest brother, Michael James Donovan, Jr., had enlisted in the navy and was deployed on an aircraft carrier in the Pacific. My other brother, Kevin Finn, had completed trade school to become a certified automobile mechanic. He found a job with a Ford dealer in the nearest sizable town and still lived at home. I had no possibility of going to college having neither the academic aptitude nor the funds. With jobs scarce for an unskilled high school graduate, I enlisted in the army a couple of weeks following my high school commencement. After basic training at Ft. Jackson, SC, the army assigned me to the Quartermaster Corps and sent me to Ft. Lee, VA for advanced individual training as a unit supply specialist. When I had completed AIT, I received orders assigning me to the 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, NY.
My four-year enlistment had almost come to an end. I had survived two deployments to Afghanistan with no injuries and no real trauma other than the realization of how lucky I had been. I had a very positive service record but no desire to re-enlist. The First Sergeant, on the other hand, had been relentless in his campaign to secure my re-enlistment. I carefully maintained a façade of non-commitment knowing that he would offer incentives for my signature on the re-enlistment papers. One such offer was a three-day pass with no strings attached.
I had traveled very little other than the deployments to Afghanistan, hardly a tourist haven. Montréal with its reputation of European ambiance was only a three-hour drive away from Ft. Drum. One of my buddies who owed me a favor agreed to loan me his car for the weekend. He was on duty anyway and unable to leave the post. Even though the pass did not become active until Friday morning, I knew that the First Sergeant would ignore my leaving Thursday evening after completing normal duty hours.
Thus I found myself driving down a secondary road on the outskirts of Montreal looking for a motel with a decent restaurant nearby. It seemed that I had discovered one of Montreal’s seedier districts given the numerous establishments advertising topless or all nude dancers. One of them touted their low-cost steaks with the added advantage of its location across the road from a Days Inn. Deciding that my hunger trumped the need to secure accommodations for the night, I pulled into the parking lot of the strip joint, exited the car and entered the club. After I paid the cover charge, the receptionist led me to a table next to the runway where the dancers performed. A scantily clad waitress took my order for a steak dinner and a beer. I settled back to watch the strippers dance to music from a jukebox.
Most of the girls appeared curvy and busty, some with breasts that were obviously surgically enhanced. They stripped to tiny g-strings that barely covered their slits. Except for their waistbands, from the back they looked as if they were completely nude. They danced with varying levels of skill from jerky ineptitude to smooth, graceful perfection. Judging from their responses to the performers, the other patrons considered the dancers’ physical attributes more important than dancing skill. Between performances the girls circulated among the tables cadging drinks and offering lap dances.
I noticed one dancer that stood out from the rest, at least to me. A raven-haired beauty, she was slim and petite. On her slender body, her perky titties seemed larger than they probably measured. Her dance movements were mostly smooth with some slight hesitations that suggested that she was a bit tipsy. She looked too young to be working as a topless dancer. She caught my eye as she danced. In my imagination she danced just for me. When the song ended she exited the stage toward the back as the next dancer took her place.
The next dancer did not appeal to me so I returned my attention to my dinner. There was a screeching noise as the jukebox experienced some kind of malfunction causing a sound like a phonograph needle scraping across the currently playing record. Moments later the feeling of hard nipples and soft breasts pressing against my back surprised me.
Before I could turn around, I heard a soft voice whisper in my ear, “Wanna buy a girl a drink, sailor?”
“Sure, baby,” I agreed, “But I’m not a sailor if that matters to you.”
“Sorry,” she apologized, “With that haircut, I assumed that you are a military man.”
“I am.” I admitted. “I’m in the US army. I have a three-day pass. I wanted to visit Montréal while I still have the chance.”
“So,” she continued, “How about that drink and a lap dance?”
I stood up and steered her to a seat facing me as I said, “I’d rather just talk with you since I can do that and finish my meal before it gets cold. I’ll be happy to buy you a drink. I’ll even pay you for a lap dance if you will just sit and talk with me.”
I knew that I would pay full price for a non-alcoholic drink but I wanted at least a few minutes to talk with this girl.
She slid into the seat next to me and asked, “What do you want to talk about?”
I started by introducing myself with extended hand saying, “Let me introduce myself first. Brian Patrick Donovan, at your service. All my friends call me Pat.”
She accepted my hand replying with a soft French-Canadian accent, “Sophie Montreaux. I am very pleased to meet you, Pat Donovan.”
She looked at me studiously before adding, “You look like you should be a country boy, Pat. You should blow up your TV, throw away your papers and move the country.”
“You must be clairvoyant, Sophie,” I replied. “I’m from Tennessee and I’ll go back home when my enlistment expires in a few weeks. My grandfather left me a little land with a cabin. It will take a lot of work to make it habitable but I think I’ll have enough time and money to do it.”
“You’re so lucky,” she gushed. “You can build a home and plant a garden and maybe an orchard. Peaches are really good for you, I’m told.”
“What about you?” I asked trying to shift the subject from me to her. “I’m surprised a girl as nice as you is working in a place like this. In fact, you look a little young.”
“I’m old enough, I’ll have you know,” she exclaimed indignantly.
“Sorry,” I apologized, “I didn’t mean to insult you. You look so young and innocent, I’m surprised to see you working here.”
“Yeah, well,” she mumbled, “You do what you have to do to survive.”
Pausing momentarily, she added, “Now I have to apologize. I didn’t intend to be rude. The truth is that I was working in a shop and living with my parents when they were both killed in an accident. They didn’t have much saved and I couldn’t afford their apartment on my earnings at the shop. In fact, I couldn’t even afford the much smaller apartment I now live in. Dancing here I can afford to live and even take a few courses at the community college. I hope I’ll be able to get a better job and quit here as soon as possible.”
I was a little embarrassed that she would reveal something that personal. I didn’t know what to say next. Fortunately she saved me by saying that she would have to dance again soon. She left my table and headed toward the dressing rooms behind the runway.
When I finished my meal, I ordered another beer and sat back to enjoy her next dance. I stayed a couple of more hours. After every dance she came to my table to talk. In every conversation she urged me to go home to the country, get rid of television and newspapers and live off the land. Finally I decided that it was getting really late and I should get a motel room. As I stood to leave, she confronted me.
“Leaving so soon,” she challenged.
“I need to get a room for the night,” I responded. “I came here to see the sights in Montreal. I have only the weekend. I have to be back on post Sunday evening.”
“Let me make you an offer,” she said. “If you hang out here another hour, you can stay at my apartment the whole weekend. And I’ll show you Montreal during the day. I’ll still have to dance each night but I can guarantee you a good time.”
“That sounds like an offer I can’t refuse,” I agreed.
About 20 minutes after her last dance, she came out of the dressing room wearing jeans and a t-shirt.
I greeted her saying, “You seem to have all the answers.”
Smiling, she retorted, “No, but I’ll give it a try.”
I took her arm and guided her to the car. I followed her directions to her apartment that was only a five-minute drive from the club where she danced. She led me up to her tiny studio apartment. She seemed very nervous as she showed me around.
Then she stammered, “I, ... I have only one bed. You can sleep with me but you need to know that I’ve never done it before.”
I was a little shocked to hear that a topless dancer could be a virgin. Trying to be a gentleman, I said, “I would love to sleep with you, but if you don’t want to do anything else, that’s OK with me too.”
She looked down shyly, almost whispering, “No, I really want to do it with you. You’re the nicest person I’ve met since my parents died. I’m 18 and I’ve never even gone out on a date. My parents were very religious and very strict. I attended all girl schools. Now everyone who knows me thinks I’m a whore because I strip for a living. All the men I meet just want to have sex with me. I don’t know how to cope with men who want me, ... who want my body. But you, ... you’ve treated me with respect since we met. It’s time for me to grow up and become a woman. I want you to teach me what I need to know.”
I stepped forward to close the gap between us so I could pull her into my arms. Although I hadn’t been all that experienced with women before joining the army, I had opportunities to learn how to please my partner. I was confident that I could make Sophie’s first time special for her.
At Ft. Drum I had met a young war widow whose husband had perished in Iraq after an encounter with an IED. With two young children to support, Molly supplemented her meager survivor’s income and benefits by playing for pay. She was very selective of those she serviced but we favored few enjoyed her enthusiastic lovemaking. She taught me everything I knew about how to make sex exceptional for myself and for my partner.
Sophie trembled in my arms as I leaned slightly to kiss her gently. I brushed my lips softly over hers with just the tip of my tongue protruding. At the same time I lightly caressed her back from her waist to her shoulders. She sighed as she relaxed sagging against me. I felt her tongue hesitantly imitating mine as she returned my kiss. I ramped up the passion in our kiss parting her lips with my tongue.
After a minute or two, she pulled back slightly murmuring, “You’ll have to teach me everything that a man and woman can do together.”
“I’m pretty sure I don’t know everything,” I replied, “But I can teach you what I know and we can learn the rest together.”
With that assertion, I moved my concentration from her lips to the rest of her face. I slowly massaged her shoulders while giving her little kisses and nips all over her face and neck. She moaned when I moved behind her to kiss the back of her neck. I grasped the hem of her t-shirt pulling it up over her small, bra-encased breasts. She raised her arms so I could pull it completely off. Still kissing her neck, I rubbed my hands across her back seeking the clasp of her bra. She reached between her boobs to open the clasp in front. She turned around to return the favor pulling my t-shirt off in one smooth motion.
We resumed our embrace bare chests pressed against each other. The feeling of her soft tits with their hard, pointy nipples against my chest stimulated my cock into tumescence. Sofia ground her pelvis against my crotch causing my rod to feel even harder.
“Take me to bed now,” she pleaded.
With her arms around my neck, she jumped up to wrap her legs around my waist. I had to grab her thighs and lean back to avoid falling over. I staggered to her bedside leaning over to lower her to the bed. I lost my balance falling to the bed on top of her. After giving her another passionate kiss, I stood up to shed the rest of my clothes. I kicked off shoes before quickly stripping off my jeans, socks and boxers. I knelt between Sofia’s knees leaning over to fondle and kiss her breasts. They were probably about a 34B but looked larger on her slim torso.
While making love to her boobs with my mouth, my hands crept down to her waist to unsnap and unzip her jeans. She moaned in response as I grasped the waistbands of her jeans and panties pulling them together over her ass to her knees. I scooted back far enough to grab her jeans at the cuffs and pull them entirely free of her legs. Her panties followed immediately afterwards.
She raised her head to look at me with both anticipation and nervousness.
“I’m ready,” she murmured hesitantly.
“Are you sure about this?” I asked. “The first time can hurt, you know.”
She gave me a wicked little grin saying, “I may have led you to believe that I am more innocent than I am.”
“Oh?” I questioned with slightly raised eyebrows.
“One of the other dancers bought me a vibrator,” she said. “I use it when the dancing makes me horny. That’s how I’ve avoided doing anything with a man, ... or a woman. My cherry is long gone.”
“Well then,” I said, “Where were we? We should pick up where we left off.”
I pushed her knees apart so I could begin kissing her inner thighs from her knees to her crotch. I could hear her lightly panting as my tongue reached her pussy. She squealed the first time I licked her from her anus to her clit. I worked up a rhythm starting with slow licks and gradually increasing the pace. It seemed to work because Sophie began to tremble and moan in sync with my oral ministrations. After several minutes of oral stimulation, she stiffened clamping her thighs against my head as she came hard with a long, drawn-out moan.
I crawled onto the bed next to her so that I could pull her into an embrace. I kissed her gently while caressing her back from her shoulders to her delectable ass.
She sighed, “It feels so good to have you holding me like this.”
“But you must want more,” she added as she reached between us to grasp my rigid rod.
“I’m ready when you are,” I agreed. “But for your first time with a man it might be easier if you are on top. That way you can control how fast we go.”
I rolled over onto my back pulling her on top of me. She ground her wet pussy over the length of my cock. As she slid back and forth lubricating my shaft, I fondled her breasts. Then she rose up on her knees grasping my prick to position it at her entrance. Slowly she sank down onto my rigid rod rotating her hips to ease her descent. Before she was even half way impaled on my prong, I could not resist thrusting upwards to hasten our joining. Moments later our pubic bones collided. She must not have felt any significant pain because she kept pace with my thrusts until we both lost control and came almost simultaneously. She collapsed on my chest as we gasped for breath. I looked into her eyes questioningly.
She whispered her answer, “It was everything I hoped my first time would be.”
I hugged her in response. I had a fleeting thought that I should have asked her about birth control but I didn’t want to spoil the mood by bringing it up when it was already too late. For a while we lay there snuggling and enjoying the afterglow of our lovemaking. Before we drifted off to sleep, Sophie padded quietly off to the bathroom and retrieved a warm, wet washcloth that she used to wash us off. Then she crawled back into the bed, positioning herself so that I was spooned against her back. She pulled the covers over us.
As my consciousness retreated, I barely heard her whisper, “Good night, Pat Donovan.”
It seemed like only moments later that I felt Sophie prodding me to get out of bed.
“Wake up, Pat, wake up,” she giggled. “It’s late and we have lots to do.”
I glanced groggily at the alarm clock on the bedside table startled to realize it was already late morning. Sophie stood next to the bed still naked. She pulled me out of the bed toward the bath.
“Come!” she demanded, “We have to shower and dress so I can show you my favorite parts of Montréal as I promised.”
We probably should not have showered together because it took more time than if we had showered separately. The back washing turned into front washing followed by manual stimulation to the point of orgasm. Barely able to stand, we staggered out of the shower, dried ourselves with towels and dressed.
Sophie led the way to a nearby patisserie for breakfast. She ordered café au lait while I ordered my coffee black. We enjoyed breakfast pastries with our coffee. I was particularly taken with the strong rich European style coffee that the small shop served.
We made our next stop at a station where I bought a weekend ticket for the public transportation. The ticket was good for all the buses and subways Friday through Sunday. Sophie, of course, had a monthly pass that gave her access to all the public transportation in and around Montreal.
It was already just past Noon when we reached the Vieux Montréal, the old part of the city. Sophie seemed exceptionally animated as she led me through the streets pointing out all the interesting old buildings and commenting on their history. I enjoyed her enthusiasm, thinking to myself that I could not have had a better tour guide. There were also many shops catering to tourists along with endless restaurants many of which had tables on the sidewalks where patrons could enjoy their snacks and libations while watching the people go by.
Sophie’s eyes gleamed when I bought her a couple of trinkets from tourist shops. She tried to dissuade me from the purchases but I insisted that I had to reward her for the tour. By late afternoon, we were feeling a bit hungry. Sophie took me to one of the many restaurants that featured the famous Montréal smoked meat. Sophie beamed when I extolled the selection. By then it was getting a bit late in the afternoon. Sophie had to be back at work at the strip joint around 8:00 PM. With full bellies we headed back to her apartment.
As soon as we entered her studio apartment, she said, “I need a little rest before I go to the club for my evening shift.”
Nervously she added, “Would you like to join me?”
“Of course,” I reassured her. “I would never miss a chance to snuggle with you.”
We headed toward the bedroom shedding clothes as we went. By the time we reached the bed, we were both naked. She turned and plopped down on the bed with her legs spread wide.
“Do me again like you did last night,” she pleaded.
Not willing to disappoint, I knelt between her thighs and started licking her inner thighs from her knees to her center. She groaned as I shifted my attention to her slit. I repeatedly swiped my tongue from her vagina to her clit. She must have been primed because it did not take long for her legs to clamp against my head while she shuddered through her climax. When her thighs relaxed, I moved them apart and positioned my rod at her entrance.
“Yes, baby, yes,” she moaned. “Give me what I need.”
I tried to ease my way into her tight channel with short, gentle thrusts. She countered with more vigorous responses until I was buried balls deep into her welcoming pussy. We were both so excited that it didn’t take long for us both to cum. Once again, I unloaded what seemed like a massive amount of semen. I rolled to the side to avoid crushing her. She turned so that she was snuggled against me with her head on my shoulder and a leg draped across mine. We drifted off to sleep in that position.
Responding to some internal clock, she woke around 7:00 PM. She prodded me awake to tell me that she needed to shower before she went to work. I recognized the implied invitation to join her, an invitation that I readily accepted. This time there was no leeway for playing around since she had to be at the club by 8:00. We washed each other’s backs and that was all.
She told me that I could wait for her at the apartment while she danced, but I insisted on driving her to work. I also said that I would wait there until she finished her shift. Her smile at that declaration warmed my soul.
Before we left, she went to a cupboard to retrieve a large bottle of vodka. She mixed herself a strong vodka and tonic and swilled it down. As I gaped in surprise, she followed the first drink with a second.
“What’s going on,” I asked.
She blushed as she replied, “I need a couple of drinks in me to have the courage to dance naked. The trick is to get high enough not to care about the nudity without losing control and becoming a slut or a whore. So far it has been OK but I can’t wait until I can put this life behind me.”
“Sorry,” I muttered. “I didn’t intend any criticism.”
“No apology necessary,” she responded. “In fact, I’ll take it to mean that you are really concerned about me.”
“I am concerned,” I agreed. “I know we’ve only been together less than a day but I’m starting to feel that you are exactly what I’ve been seeking for a long time.”
I felt that her brilliant smile confirmed her feelings for me as well as my feelings for her.
She got me into the club without paying the cover charge. I did drink a few beers and ate another cheap steak dinner while I waited for her to finish her shift. I felt jealous when she offered lap dances to other patrons even though I was certain that nothing would come of them. I understood that she had to make a living and that lap dances were part of what she had to do.
Finally the club closed. She rejoined me and we headed to the car to drive back to her apartment. With both of us tired, we went straight to bed for a very slow session of lovemaking.
Saturday morning was a repeat of Friday. We woke late, enjoyed a shower together and headed for the patisserie for breakfast. For our Saturday adventure, Sophie decided that we would visit the Parc du Mont Real, the largest of Montréal’s parks on the hill that gave Montréal its name. After taking the metro to the park, we walked for miles so that Sophie could show me as many of the park’s features as possible. During the tour, she quizzed me about rural life with specific emphasis on living off the land. She made it clear that television and newspapers were low on her list of priorities despite her being raised in the city. I realized that she had a very romantic concept of rural life with almost no understanding of how much hard physical labor it required.
I, on the other hand, tried to learn more about Sophie as a person. Our conversation confirmed my impression that she had lived a very sheltered life. Even so she had a lot of courage along with a willingness to try new things. Despite, or perhaps because of, her strict Catholic upbringing, she had grown cool toward the institutional church. She told me repeatedly that one had to find Jesus on their own. She also had a practical streak as demonstrated by her choosing to further her education while supporting herself by dancing. She behaved affectionately toward me without seeming clingy. In response I found myself growing very fond of her.
I enjoyed the tour of the park though by the end we both had tired considerably. We took a bus to Catherine Street, Montreal’s version of Fifth Avenue in New York or the Miracle Mile in Chicago. We ended the day in an Irish pub off Catherine Street enjoying a beer with shepherd’s pie. After our repast, we went back to her apartment early as we had done the day before.
I could almost sense her feeling of anxiety when we went to bed to make love. The physical actions were the same as the afternoon before, but the emotional intensity exceeded our previous couplings by an order of magnitude.
“What’s the matter, Sophie,” I whispered. “You seem a little upset or something.”
“It’s ... it’s just that I’m beginning to have feelings for you,” she sniffled. “Tomorrow you’ll be gone and I’ll probably never see you again. I haven’t felt this close to anyone since my parents died. I just don’t know what to do.”
“Don’t worry,” I said trying to reassure her. “I’ve got only six more weeks on my enlistment. As soon as I’m processed out, I’ll come back to see you. I promise.”
She hugged me tightly murmuring, “I’ll hold you to that promise, Pat Donovan.”
The evening at the strip club passed as it had the night before except that I did not order another meal. We were both subdued as we drove back to her apartment after the club closed. After making love slowly, we held each other until we drifted off to sleep.
Late morning I again woke to a most pleasant sensation. Sophie was gently stroking my rapidly inflating cock.
“Oh god,” I moaned, “That feels so good.”
“I want to try something new,” she said, “At least new to me.”
“What is it,” I asked.
Without reply she leaned over to take the head of my dick into her mouth. The sensations as she rubbed her tongue over the underside of my glans were indescribable. I pushed myself up onto my elbows so I could watch her sucking me off. Although she could only get about half of my rod in her mouth, she quickly brought me to the edge bobbing up and down.
“Sophie, stop!” I groaned. “You have to stop; I can’t hold back any longer.”
She used a free hand to push me down onto my back. Moments later I filled her mouth with cum. She swallowed each shot until no more dribbled out. As I lay back on the bed panting, she sat up and licked her lips while staring at me with eyes filled with lust.
“I just had to try that,” she said. “All the girls at work tell me that giving good head is the best way to keep your man happy.”
“You’ll get no argument from me,” I agreed. “But now it is your turn.”
I pulled her into an embrace and kissed her. Then I rolled her over onto her back so that I was on top. I caressed and kissed her moving from her face and down her torso toward the juncture of her thighs. As I moved down trying to kiss every square inch of her skin, she spread her legs wide. She gasped and moaned when I started licking her gash from her entrance to her clit. I kept it up until she tensed with a small orgasm. By then another part of me was resurgent. I lined it up to her opening to push it in very slowly with short strokes.
She thrust back more vigorously moaning, “Don’t tease me, Pat. Fuck me like you mean it. Show me I’m yours. Claim me as your woman.”
Unable to resist such an appeal, I picked up the pace. I pounded her trying to keep our thrusts in sync until the stimulation became too much to resist. Sophie squealed in a second, more intense climax as I unloaded into her womb. We collapsed side-by-side on the bed trying to catch our breath. We lay there for 15 or 20 minutes before we came down enough to get up and head for the shower.
Not surprisingly Sophie acted considerably more subdued as we dressed to go out for breakfast at the patisserie. She perked up a little when I told her that I would rather just spend time with her than to see any more sights. I added that we could do some more sightseeing when I came back after being processed out of the army. That assurance earned me yet another gleaming smile from Sophie.
We spent the afternoon alternating talking with make out sessions. Sophie was sore from our vigorous morning coupling and I didn’t want to cause further distress. I was surprised to learn that she had almost completed a course of study to become a Licensed Practical Nurse. If all went well, she could complete the certification requirements and obtain the license before I could return. That would also mean she could stop dancing as soon as she could get a job as a nurse.
I believe that Sophie felt as down as did I as the hour of my departure rapidly approached. Since she had no phone, neither cell nor land line, I would not be able to talk with her until I could return to Montreal. Sophie wept openly when I hugged her goodbye. I promised to write letters as often as I could. I promised to return as soon as I could. Leaving a miserable Sophie in the rear view mirror, I started my journey back to Ft. Drum.
The next six weeks crawled by. The First Sergeant increased his campaign to secure my reenlistment. I continued to sit on the fence trying hard not to reveal any decision one way or the other. During the same time I surreptitiously began making arrangements for life after the army. I wrote to my parents that I would soon complete my enlistment and that I expected to arrive home sometime around mid-summer. I hinted that I might be bringing home a big surprise.
I also kept my promise to Sophie to write as often as possible. Since I got a letter from her every day I tried to match her missives daily as well. A lot of the content was trivial descriptions of daily life. But there was more. I began to understand her as a person, a person I was falling in love with. I resolved to do whatever I could to keep her in my life. To that purpose, I spent some of my spare time researching American immigration law and marriage regulations for both Canada and the USA. I wanted to know what the best options would be if I could convince Sophie to marry me.
Because I had been quite frugal during my military service, I had saved a nice nest egg to ease my return to civilian life. I had planned to purchase a vehicle to drive back to Tennessee. With Sophie’s obsession on adapting to a rural life style, I found a low-mileage Ford F-150 pickup with a lined, full size bed and a cap. I hoped to convince Sophie to accompany me to Tennessee. The truck should prove adequate to haul whatever furniture and personal items she might want to bring with her if she were to agree.
Finally the day arrived for my out-processing. The First Sergeant was severely disappointed having failed to secure my reenlistment. Nevertheless he gave me a pat on the back and wished me good luck with my return to civilian life. He assured me that they would welcome me back if I chose to return. I, in turn, thanked him for his leadership and encouragement. By late afternoon, I had completed all the paper work and turned in all my government issued tools and supplies. Earlier I had packed the truck with my meager accumulation of personal belongings. The time had come to head back to Montreal.
I arrived at Sophie’s apartment after 8:00 PM. When I found the apartment dark, I drove over to the strip club where Sophie danced. I paid the cover charge and strode toward the stage. As luck would have it, Sophie was on stage dancing. I had almost reached the stage, when she saw me. She leapt off the stage into my arms almost knocking me over. She hugged and kissed me until the bouncer rushed over to grab me by the arm.
“Back off, dude,” he growled, “You’re not allowed to touch the dancers.”
“It’s OK, Paul,” Sophie said as she interjected herself between the rather large bouncer and me.
With a big smile, she added, “I was just on my way to tell Mr. Delacroix that I quit. Since I will no longer work here, it will be OK for Pat to hold me whenever he likes.”
“Just doing my job,” Paul muttered.
“No problem by me, Paul,” I agreed. “I was surprised too when she jumped on me. Not that I’m complaining.”
Paul grinned, “I wouldn’t complain either if she felt that way about me.”
Paul moved back to his station next to the entrance while Sophie headed for the dressing rooms in the back. I sat at a table and ordered a beer when the waitress came by. A few minutes later I saw Sophie wearing jeans and a t-shirt walking toward the manager’s office. I had almost finished the beer when I noticed Sophie walking toward me with an unhappy expression.
“What’s wrong, sweetie,” I asked.
“That cheap bastard refused to pay me because I quit without notice,” she replied.
“Don’t worry about it,” I said. “I’m hoping you won’t need the money anyway.”
“May I assume that you will explain to me why I don’t need the money I earned?” she asked.
“Yes,” I said, “But not here. Let’s go back to your apartment and I will tell you everything.”
Sophie seemed giddy with excitement as I drove the short distance to her apartment. She was halfway to the door by the time I had locked the truck. I hurried to catch up with her.
As soon as the door to the apartment closed behind us, she turned to me and demanded, “OK, now you can explain to me why I don’t need the money I am due.”
“First I have to ask you a question,” I countered. “Will you move to Tennessee with me and marry me?”
I had expected her to say ‘yes’ immediately. I was surprised to see her hesitate.
After a few moments of contemplation, she said, “We have to talk about family. I don’t know how you feel about children.”
“Well,” I started, “That is a little complicated. I guess I always expected to marry someday and to have children. But it is the woman who bears the pain and discomfort of pregnancy and childbirth. I think the woman should have the deciding voice of whether to have children or not. That being said, I would love to have a family with you. But if you don’t want children, I still want you to become my wife.”
Sophie startled me by grabbing me into a tight embrace. With tears leaking onto my shoulder, she stammered, “Yes, ... yes, ... Pat Donovan, ... yes I will marry you.”
She hesitated momentarily before continuing, “As for children, the first one is already on the way.”
Stunned at first, I twirled her around exclaiming, “Oh my god! That is so wonderful. My folks will be even more surprised. I just know they will love you when they meet you.”
Since Sophie was accustomed to dancing until 2:00 AM, we stayed up talking until almost midnight. Sophie made us some sandwiches because I had not eaten since lunch at midday. I tried to summarize everything I had learned about American immigration law and marriage requirements. I told her that the legal requirements for marriage in Tennessee were far simpler than those in Canada. Essentially all we had to do was apply for a marriage license that would be issued immediately upon application. Then we had only to marry within 30 days.
The immigration issue was trickier. As a Canadian citizen Sophie could enter the USA as a tourist or visitor without requiring a visa. But if we married and she then applied for permanent residency, the INS bureaucrats might consider our actions immigration fraud. They could then deport her and ban her from coming back. The officially sanctioned procedure is to apply for a K-1 visa that is specifically intended for the foreign born fiancés of American citizens. It can be a lengthy bureaucratic process but after considering all the possibilities, we decided that was the best way to go. Immediately after breakfast the next morning we went to the proper authorities to initiate the process.
We later realized that it was indeed the best decision. I had enough money saved to support us while Sophie completed her nursing course. We continued to live in her tiny flat that she rented on a month-to-month basis. Though I could not be officially employed in Canada, I was able to use the truck to move people on a cash-under-the-table basis. Montreal had a dynamic population most of whom lived in apartments. Working unlicensed and untaxed meant that I could offer significant savings over the licensed professional movers, especially for small jobs that the professionals didn’t want anyway. Though my advertising was strictly word of mouth, I soon had all the work I could handle.
I also had to call my parents to tell them that I would not be able to come home for a few months. I did not tell them about Sophie because I wanted to surprise them. I reiterated my earlier hints that I would have a big surprise for them when I returned home. I also learned that there was a new after-market auto parts manufacturer building a plant in our county. I went online to down load a description of their employment application procedures for future reference.
About six weeks after I had returned to Montréal, Sophie completed her nursing course at the community college and applied for a license to practice as an LPN. A couple of weeks later on the same day that she received notice that her nursing license was granted we also received notice that her K-1 visa was approved. Ecstatic, we went to one of the best restaurants in Montréal for a celebratory dinner. We had no wine or cocktails with dinner because Sophie’s pregnancy was visibly obvious. In fact she had told me that she quit drinking as soon as she knew she was pregnant.
We spent the next week preparing for our trip to Tennessee. Because Sophie had rented the flat furnished, we only had to pack her personal belongings. She lost her deposit because she gave less than the 30 days notice required by the lease. At that point neither of us cared. I had made enough money as a mover to pay for rent and food while we waited for the visa process to run its course. I still had all my savings from my four-year enlistment. I was confident that I could support us until I could find a job. I had completed the online employment application for the auto parts plant. I had only to wait for a response.