I eased back in my chair and peered out the window at the Louisiana heat that was baking everything on the other side of that thin pane of glass. The air conditioner was running nonstop and giving me a slight headache of too dry air. It was late afternoon and still the thermometer stood over 92 degrees, a normal summer day in other words. I glanced at the tie and jacket hanging in the corner and stole another look at the clock to confirm that it had been five minutes since I had last looked.
I hate these cocktail party thingamajigs but as an up and coming businessman, my presence was expected if not anticipated, hopefully. Besides, I might meet someone. One or two romances that went nowhere and now ten years later I was wondering what the hell else life had to offer me besides business success and money; my nights were empty.
Maybelle knocked on the door and opened it without waiting for a reply. She was my office manager, my surrogate mother, and my private fashion guru. She was also a Creole black with five grown children and an accent that was smooth and rich like an etouffee.
She pointed at my tie: "Is that what you're gonna where?"
I nodded and waited for the critique. My right hand was in my lap and tapping nervously on my leg as she chose her words.
"You ain't going to a wake, Mr. Koenig. You can wear a little color, bring out some color in your face instead of making you look like a pasty white man."
I pay her well for this privilege, mind you. Truthfully it was a tremendous, daring act to call a white man "white" as a black person. Racism is alive and well in Louisiana and the hatred between black and white is deep, hard, and unrelenting, often with good reason. It is flattering that she trusts me so well. I also know she already has a tie picked out that she bought on her lunch break at the local mall and charged to the office expense account; ain't the first time.
This little social gathering was a watershed because of my money. True it is that politics and money go and in hand but in Louisiana that relationship is just a little more incestuous than most other places; it is not just the food that is spicy. In fact the natives look upon the antics in Washington and dismiss it with a one word critique: "amateurs."
This was a gathering for friends and would-be friends of the mayor, whose election was next year. I was wondering just how much it was going to cost me - two zeros or three. Just another business expense as far as most people were concerned.
I was surprised how many showed up solo for the cocktail reception. Usually the well-coifed and bejeweled wives were out in front for these affairs, but the room appeared to be filled with check writers, men and women who actually cut the checks.
As I worked the room I began to catch a glimpse of an unfamiliar face. It was a pixie face framed in short black hairstyle. She seemed to weave through the crowd and I had a hard time keeping her in my line of sight. She stopped in front a couple near the front of the room and I disengaged myself to find a better vantage post to scope her out. I leaned against the opposite wall and was pretending to wade through a Texas salsa while surreptitiously stealing long glances at her back. Her black dress hung low down her back and framed her hips deliciously.
"She's called 'Black Widow'," Little Jim chuckled in my ear making me jump a mile and almost dumping salsa down my front. There is nothing little about Jim, it is just that his daddy is Big Jim; they do that a lot down here.
I started to protest my innocence and Little Jim just waved it away with a drink in his hand. "She lost a kid to cancer about five or seven years ago, real tragic. She threw her husband away and took over her daddy's nursery business. They grow exotics I think. Anyway, she turned the business around, she's doing good. But she only wears black and no man gets close to this day - that's why she is "The Black Widow."
"You related to her?" Everyone is related down here; not that there is any such thing as incest in these parts.
"Naw, she's Cajun, pureblood." If you are white you're either a Mississippi redneck or a Cajun; transplanted Yankees like me are the exception that proves the rule. In the deep south, the white folk used to call black people "Coon"; they don't do that in public anymore because it isn't polite in public, only in private. The Cajun people, they were called "Coonass." While a non-Cajun would never call a Cajun that, if they want to live, they still call each other "coonass." They wear it like a badge of pride.
Little Jim spotted someone and with a wave he took off towards a distant clump of people. I waited around for the official mayor welcome and lamely touched base with acquaintances who might have business on their minds. Just as I was getting tired of waiting I felt the hand come down on my right shoulder and I knew the squeeze had arrived.
"Mayor," I oozed as I turned to greet my host, "what a pleasure to see you. Thank you for the invitation."
"Peter Koenig, you are looking good tonight, nice tie too. After I greet everybody, I want you to hang around. I got someone who wants to meet you."
The mayor wants to introduce me to someone, that was a first and my curiosity shifted into high gear. The mayor made his obligatory speech with a subtle reminder that he expected all of us to open our hearts and checkbooks, and he kept it short. I stood in the crowd waiting for the brown-nosers and pud-protectors (I know, some of my juvenile traits die slowly) to finish before I approached.
I caught his eye and he broke away from the shoe-lickers and took me by the elbow over to none other than the Black Widow. Her scent was jasmine and I took a deep breath.
"Peter Koenig, let me introduce Marie-Claire Bresson, and as I stretched out my hand the mayor drawled, "Marie-Claire, Peter."
As we shook hands 'hiz honor' explained that Marie-Claire was looking for private investors for expansion and I was a private investor in search of business. I turned to thank the man for the introduction but he had that look on his face that screamed that he had just added a third zero for his campaign check. Damn. I kept my mouth shut.
He scuttled off to find fresh blood and I turned my attention back to this beautiful woman. She had an amused look on her face that reduced me to a one word defense: "what?"
"We'll just call you the new "moneybags for the mayor," she drawled out slowly. Cajun language sounds like French with a Brooklyn accent, but her voice left me utterly smitten.
"Just bizz-ness," I replied. "I could use a drink, care to join me?"
She nodded and walked beside me to the bar, which was not busy at the moment, a rarity in these parts. I let her order first as is proper and she asked for a double vodka. 'O Lord, ' I wondered, 'what kind of woman is this.' She swept the room with her eyes and suggested we take a walk where we could talk uninterrupted. That only confused me more.
We walked out with our drinks and I figured we had just screwed the caterer out of two glasses. Marie-Claire led the way out of the building. She asked me to walk down with her to the Mississippi and then she turned to cut between two buildings. As we past the back corner of the building we heard a commotion to our right. In the lengthening shadows I picked out Little Jim with his pants down boffing a woman I couldn't see. I could hear her though.
"Oh gawd. Yes! That feels so good! Yes! More baby, more!" and so on and so forth. Little Jim was encouraging her and thrusting his hips with great energy; I have never seen him move so forcefully, even when his son was throwing the football in front of his Lexus. I also realized that it wasn't his wife.
Marie-Claire, standing at my left elbow, snorted. "God, I hope she fakes an orgasm as well as the rest of her performance."
I started to chuckle and was trying to hold back a good laugh, so I grabbed Marie-Claire's elbow and pulled her along until we were out of sight.
"That was Little Jim, who was that woman?" I asked while trying not to laugh.
"Just more trash in the street, darlin'." She said it with such a straight face that I couldn't hold back and just started laughing. Marie-Claire joined me with a sad smile.
As we sat on the concrete levee overlooking the river, I found myself rebuffed at any sort of small talk; however, business was an easy topic. Marie-Claire had outgrown her present property and wanted to open a second site closer to the city. We made arrangements for me to drive out to her nursery after the weekend and I walked her back to her car.
I stood in the middle of the street watching her car slip down the street and vanish around the corner. A spell had been cast upon me and I was infatuated.
Little Jim was waiting for me by my car. I figured that he knew that I knew that he was boffing some woman, but no. He slapped me on the back and offered to buy me a drink and I told him whatever he wanted was going to cost him dinner. He shrugged and pulled me into the same bar he had staked out anyway.
The man knows his food, the gumbo was good and had a kick. Everything is spicy around here. Jim wanted to know what the Black Widow wanted with me and I wanted to know who the woman was. We compromised, the woman wasn't worth a name because she was a lousy lay and Marie-Claire wanted me to come visit next week. I like Jim but I don't trust him with my business before and now, I didn't trust him with my women.
I drove across the mighty Mississippi and turned south towards Plaquemine (that's PLAK-ah-men to the rest of you). Sugarcane and soybeans were planted on the right and chemical factories were planted on the left. The stretch of the river between Baton Rouge and New Orleans is one of the densest concentrations of chemical factories in the United States; doctors call it 'Cancer Alley.'
Marie-Claire met me at front gate. I parked my car and hopped into her pickup truck for a wild ride between sugarcane fields to a group of greenhouses set far back on the property. I asked her why everything was set so far back and she explained that the sugarcane protected her valuable specimens. I gave her a blank look.
"Ever see a cane rattler?" I shook my head. "They're grow bigger around than both my hands put together and these fields are infested with them. There is only one road in and one road out."
I locked the door.
Apparently orchids are a rich and fascinating subject, not to mention lucrative. I didn't understand a word but her books were good and up to date. Backing a new greenhouse was a minimal risk from what I had seen, but I wanted to draw the process out, to find any excuse to spend time with Marie-Claire.
She looked even better in a pair of blue jeans and a black tee-shirt. Marie-Claire even managed to make work boots looks sexy. I kept stealing looks at her as I sat at her desk with the financials while she filed away some things.
"Are you staring at me?" One time too many and I had been caught.
"Do you know what they call me?" Silence filled the air. "They call me the Black Widow. You want to know why?"
"You bite men and they die?" I leaned back and put my feet up on her desk, waiting for her answer.
Marie-Claire gave me a look like she was either going to rip my fool head off or whack my legs off of her desk; I was staring into the face of violence.
I smiled and began, "You had a child who was diagnosed with cancer and died soon thereafter. You divorced your husband and took over this business from your father. You've worn black ever since your child died and allow no would be suitor to come near you. Everyone credits you for reviving these greenhouses and turning a good profit."
I put my feet down. "I did my homework, thank you. Did you do yours?" I challenged her.
The air in the room shifted from anger to concern or perhaps bewilderment. Whatever I said caught her off guard. She took the chair on the other side.
"No," was all she said.
"Well," I sort of drawled out in a pathetic Yankee imitation, "I need to see a few more pieces of information and you need to make a few calls. Why don't you come over to my office in two days and if you promise not to bite, I will pick up lunch as well."
"If I don't go out to lunch with you, we don't have a deal?"
There is something about this state that celebrates every dirty deed ever done.
"No, "lunch" means food in my vocabulary. I am inviting you out to lunch, in public, with other, uh, witnesses around and possibly a security camera at the front door. I willingly admit that I have taken other business clients out to lunch before you."
She snickered once at my subtle sarcasm. Marie-Claire looked me dead in the eye, "Flirting with me isn't going to go anywhere."
"Can't help it," I heard myself say, "I'm infatuated. Now that I have embarrassed myself, you can drive me back to my car, if you don't mind."
As we headed back, Marie-Claire turned to me and said: "Elise."
"My daughter's name was Elise and she was eight years old."
"That's awful young. How old would she be now?"
"Thirteen, last month in fact."
The dirt parking lot came into sight. "That is a long time of hurting," I concluded as the truck came to a stop. "See you in two days," and I closed the door behind me.
When I got back to the office I called out for Maybelle and she emerged from her doorway to give me the once over.
"Hey Maybelle, you ever seen a cane rattler?"
She gave an dismissive look and pointed to my office; time for a conference. Maybelle followed me in. "Two things while you was out chasing Cajun booty in the fields. First, you got a pile of messages to return and second, we got a new intern."
"Yes, an intern. Her name is..." and I stopped her right there.
"Why do we have an intern? Why am I paying for an intern? Is there something I should know about?" I demanded accusingly.
"I can tell you didn't get any Cajun booty today 'cause you are in a pissy mood." I shrugged.
"You have an intern because the Welfare to Work program pays for the first three months and the next eighteen months are tax deductible. If, and I do mean if, you do not like Brandy, you can fire her before her six month probation period is up."
"Brandy? Couldn't her parents have named her 'Bourbon' or 'Scotch?' At least I like those."
Maybelle put her hands on her hips, a sign that I nearly reached the end of her good will. "God have mercy on my soul for what I am thinking, you are impossible today."
"Fine. Keep her away from the financials. Send her in."
I turned away and took a seat at my desk. I was separating out the important calls when a knock on the open door brought my head up. Brandy was a thin young woman who looked like she was straight from the farm. She had that light brown hair that hung limply down her face framing a plain long face. She smiled and I realized pleasantly that she had all of her teeth. Dentistry is not necessarily appreciated in all of the parishes around here.
"HI, I'm Brandy," she chirped with a forced cheerfulness as she thrust out her hand across the desk.
I took it limply and dropped it just as fast. "Catch the door, please and take a seat." She did.
"Brandy, a lot of people, money, and information comes in and out of this office. A lot of stuff happens behind these doors. If you want to work here, if you want to stay here, then you are going to have to show me everything you got. Anything that happens in this office is confidential; it does not leave this office. Do you understand?"
Brandy nodded that she understood and then she stood up and took off her shirt. I started to open my mouth to protest and just couldn't do it. I let her undress completely. She was skinny with small breasts but her legs were long. I couldn't help but smile.
With a hand motion, she came around the desk and knelt before me to undo my belt and pants. We both wrestled my pants down to ankles. Brandy leaned forward first to kiss my cock and then to lick gently the shaft until I became rigid. She continued down and sucked on my balls for but a moment before she came back up to swallow me all the way down to my pubes. She caressed the underside with her tongue and she slowly bobbed her head up and down. I could only take a few moments of this sweet torture when I gently pushed her back.
I patted the desk and helped her position her ass on the edge. She looked up at me with a grin and warned her not to make any noise or Maybelle would find a reason to get rid of her. She nodded as I fished in the middle drawer for a condom. She leaned back as I placed my cock at her pussy lips. I easily pushed in and found her entrance, wet and waiting. Following her lead I slowly thrust back and forth until I was totally buried. Brandy sighed once and started to rock her hips. I continued to follow her and thrust forward to meet her rolling hips. Soon Brandy slipped a hand down to rub the top of her slit, which I found incredibly erotic.
Brandy started rolling her hips harder and I felt the pressure building in my cock. Small soft moans escaped from her lips, which only made me slip faster towards losing control. With a final jerk of her hips, Brandy squeezed my cock tight as her orgasm took hold. My cock surged as deep as it would go and the blast of my own orgasm shot deep into her cunt.
I felt the tension drain from my shoulders as my cock softened inside of her. I reached over and pulled the tissue box from the desk drawer. Withdrawing my limp dick, I stripped the latex and wiped my member clean, tossing the evidence in the wastebasket. I handed her the box and told her to clean herself off and get dressed. There was work to do after all.
As she closed the door after her, I mused about this state and every dirty deed ever done. I decided that part of my problem was a lack of imagination.
Marie-Claire showed up at 11:30 and Maybelle managed to keep her eyeballs in their sockets as she scanned the black pants suit. I ushered her in and she pulled a manila file from her leather attaché.
"So," she began without waiting for the clock to tick even one beat, "why is so much of your business in Dallas while you live in Baton Rouge?"
She had done her homework and we were off and running. Ninety minutes later we emerged and made our way to lunch. There is a little restaurant whose tables were an afterthought because the bar was huge, but the fish was good. The local fish is amberjack and served blackened is like ice cream on apple pie, it just belongs.
"Is what you told me out at the fields, true?" Marie-Claire popped out.
"Is what true," I said trying to swallow a bite as my heart sped up.
"That you're infatuated with me," and I felt my face heat up like a torch. "My friend, either you cannot eat hot pepper or I made you blush."
"I can eat hot peppers, thank you very much." I liked the words "my friend" ringing in my ears.
"I don't want to disappoint you, but..." and I stopped her right there.
"You were devastated by Elise's death as you told me." She cringed at the mention of the name, but I continued on, "but that doesn't explain why you push men away five years later. what happened?"
She took a moment to consider me, to judge my character. "You're the first one to ask that question of me. I've waited a long time for someone to ask me."
I waited. With a straightening of her spine, she began:
"When Elise was diagnosed, I spent my days running between here and the cancer center in Houston. When Elise was home, Claude would do his little chores and then plop down in front of the TV, or get on the phone with his friends. He would go to bed without me. At first I thought he was devastated like me but that he didn't know how to express it; men are like that sometimes. But the worse that Elise got, the farther Claude stayed away, going out at night instead of staying in with us. He didn't want to deal with it - not the cancer, not his daughter, and definitely not his wife. Elise died in Houston, papa helped me make the arrangements and bury her. The day after the funeral I kicked Claude out of the house and filed for divorce. Everyone thought that this old coonass had gone crazy"
We both sighed and slouched back in our chairs in silence. I figured that I had to say something and "I'm sorry" didn't seem to cut it. "Some believe that time can heal all wounds, maybe there is a bit of truth in that."
Marie-Claire nodded her head slightly in agreement, her attention drawn mostly to her own thoughts.
As we pulled into my office parking lot, Marie Claire turned to me with sudden decision. "Take me out to dinner Tuesday night. No promises though."
"You sure about this?"
Maybelle was waiting for me when I walked through the door. "Are you playing footsies with the Black Widow?"
"Marie-Claire Bresson is looking to expand her nurseries; she is a good investment."
"You didn't answer my question." She took off her reading glasses and shook her head. "Mr. Koenig, I just don't know what to do with you. You are heading for trouble. Oh, I left you the message the mayor's office called. How much is this going to cost us?"
"Two thousand," I said making a snap decision. Call them back and find out how we are supposed to deliver our support and make sure its upfront and legal."
Brandy poked her head out of the back room and I motioned her to follow me into my office. When I told her to shut the door she knew immediately what to do and began stripping off her clothes. With two piles of clothes on the ground I joined her on the couch in a sixty-nine and buried my face in her rapidly warming pussy. She swallowed my cock and began a merry dance with her tongue around its girth. Not to outdone I shoved a finger deep in her pussy and ran another back to her asshole where I teased her rosebud and half-heartedly tried to push through her ring of muscle. The stimulation made her crazy and soon her hips were bucking and she moaned loudly into my cock and exploded into her orgasm.
I disengaged myself, pulled her to the floor and reseated myself on the couch. On her knees, Brandy leaned in and slurped me back into her mouth. I let her go to town until my release began to percolate. I shoved her head all the way down my shaft and pistoned my hips into her until the release just blew into the back of her throat. It felt glorious. Brandy swallowed and tentatively smiled at me. I smiled back and motioned to our clothes.
Tuesday morning I told Maybelle that we would close the office on time that evening, that I had a dinner engagement. She knew who it was but she felt obligated to give me the once over with her right eye.
"You gonna wear that shirt to dinner?" All was right in the world, for the moment. The day passed by quicker than I expected.
Marie-Claire insisted that I meet her at the restaurant, but I got to choose the restaurant. I chose dark with a good wine list. We tied up the table for the entire evening with conversation and for my reward, I got a peck on the cheek. I chose to look at it as a promising first step.
The next day I had Brandy, oops I forgot she spells her name with an "i", I had Brandi bent over my desk, my pants around my ankles, banging the living daylights out of her. When we were done, she staggered a little out the door and gingerly made her way to her cubicle.
Maybelle calmly walked into my office and told me we had 22 weeks left before we had to get rid of Brandi in order to avoid "unnecessary complications." She kept her disapproval to herself.
Not so Little Jim who came bounding into my offices just before lunch and got an eyeful of Brandi.
"Damn, that is one hot little bitch you're keeping in back," he rated. "Is she a good fuck?"
I waved off his question and asked him what brought him around.
"Your hot date last night." Little Jim had a smug look on his face. I hadn't told him a thing; the man gossips worse than a church woman on Sunday. Besides, I don't trust him with women.
"The fancy dinner and my Yankee wits overwhelmed her and we screwed all night like is was our last day on earth." I said it with a straight face.
Little Jim just cracked up and looked like he wanted to roll on the floor laughing. I joined him, in the laughter that is. Over lunch Little Jim tried to convince me to buy some houses in one of the working class neighborhoods and rent them out. As he stabbed at the slabs of smoked turkey on his plate, I patiently explained to him that I only invest in commercial properties.
He wouldn't let me depart until I admitted that the Black Widow and I were an item. He had to pick up the tab for that bit of info.
Marie-Claire and I made Tuesday night our date night; it seemed safer to her than a weekend dinner, as if there was less gravity attached to the date. On the fourth week, Marie-Claire gave me soul-smacking, tongue sucking kiss that had my toes curled half of the night.
The prospect of making progress in our relationship kept me tossing and turning all night as scenarios played out in my dreams. It was all for naught for the reality of our lives as a couple was to coming crashing down upon my head in a manner that I never anticipated.
Meanwhile back in the office, Brandi had figured out the routine that Wednesday morning meant hard banging sessions with the boss. She decided to disarm me with an inspired blowjob that brought me closer to edge than I wanted. Overheated, I couldn't fuck her long and hard, which I could understand if not appreciate. I treated her to a gentle, calm fuck that left both of us satiated and pain free.
Maybelle stood at my door after Brandi left. "Eighteen weeks" was all she said.
Tuesday morning and Marie-Claire was on the phone complaining that we had fallen into a dull routine and were in desperate need of a change of pace. At first I thought she meant that we were going to drive 90 miles to New Orleans, but I was mistaken. She was going to cook.
Waiting for the evening hours, my business concerns had the audacity to intrude on my mental perambulations. They love these old fashioned words around these parts, and to watch a grizzled old man missing half of teeth wrap his tongue around these twisters is, for lack of a better word, a hoot.
Business was good and business was bad. One of the Dallas restaurants that I owned in part was a cash cow, but its sister restaurant, was fairing poorly, to put it mildly. The time was rapidly approaching when I would have to board a puddle-jumper to Dallas.
I loaded up the cooler with fresh shrimp, crawfish and a six pack of beer, because her idea of "a little heat" would give a weaker man apoplexy. Marie-Claire's house was an older ranch with no porch in front but a wonderful carport in back. In Louisiana, only strangers use the front door, family and friends use the back door, and they don't necessarily wait for a person to open the door. Fortunately Marie-Claire had the door open by the time I retrieved the cooler from the back seat, which saved me from the "knock and wait" or "just barge in" dilemma. You got your worries, I got mine.
May is the real crawfish season but I had remained sober enough that month during the Crawfish Boils to learn how to "pinch and suck" the critters. Do it backwards and the results are just nasty, just a warning to you Yankees coming down for a visit. I felt positively domestic standing at the sink peeling the shrimp and Marie-Claire was in a good mood that was infectious.
Marie-Claire cuddled with me on the couch to watch a movie. The spice was still tingling my tongue. God as my witness, these people think that Tabasco is an appropriate substitute for ketchup. Nonetheless, her arm wrapped over my belly made up for any discomfort.
I leaned over to kiss her as the credits rolled and Marie-Claire asked me if my intentions were honorable. I answered "no" and she responded "right answer." She closed up tight against me and I felt her breasts press into my chest and our tongues found each other. Spice is good, spice tastes good, really good.
My expectations had been deliberately low but the moment seemed to be heating up. I ran my hands up and down her flanks and Marie-Claire responded with vigor. When I wondered where to start next, Marie-Claire broke our kiss and announced, "We are going to the bedroom." She took my hand and nearly pulled my arm out of its socket and dragged me to her bedroom.
She whisked off her blouse and tossed her bra after it while facing me. Her breasts hung on her frame with her light brown nipples pointing directly at me. They jiggled as she continued to disrobe pitching her jeans and her cotton panties into the pile. I've seen pretty women before, I'm banging a young one now but never before had I seen an a figure that was so utterly feminine. When she turned around I realized that she had almost no butt nor did there appear to be an ounce of fat on her frame.
A brief smile crossed her face as she watched me stare.
"Strip," she ordered and I did.
I could almost believe that the world stopped rotating on its axis as I watched her cute butt hoist itself up as Marie-Claire climbed onto the bed. I ran to the bed and began running my hands over her back, teasing the ridges of muscle on either side of her spine with my fingertips.
But the skin that I thought would be hot to the touch was decidedly cool. Marie-Claire rolled over and clasped my hand in hers and directed them to her breasts, which I rubbed for but a moment when she directed my hands to her legs.
I had waited for this moment, dreamed of it and jerked off to it; yet, my fantasies were never as quiet or cold as the room felt now. My fingers found a little moisture between her lips and I caressed her pussy to warm it up and make it juicy. In my fantasy she moaned under my ministrations and her passion bubbled over; before me now she barely made a sound. The moisture came, but only with a lot of coaxing.
In urgency bereft of passion, Marie-Claire told me to fuck her with my cock. I positioned myself without fanfare, flare, or fireworks and pushed into her cunt. We found a rhythm and began to fuck in earnest. She refused to open her eyes and look at me as I looked upon her face with earnest intent.
"It's not enough," she complained, "I need more to make me cum." It wasn't the size of my dick, I been to too many beds to worry about that one. I knew what she meant though because that's what I felt.
I withdrew from her cunt and clamped my mouth on her pussy and gave her a tongue bath. I love going down on a woman, their response to a flick on the clit is such a turn-on to me, but again my fantasy evaporated. Marie-Claire did respond to my licking and her hands pulled on her nether lips to make the access even easier. She didn't go wild, she didn't call out my name or anything. With little effort, she quickly reached her peak and finally moaned aloud as she climaxed.
I re-inserted my cock and began to fuck her again. I wanted to make love but there was no passion beneath me, only flesh. By friction alone my body found the stimulation and I shot my wad inside her.
As my cock went flaccid, Marie-Claire lifted up and gave me a peck on the lips and said, "thank you, I needed that release."
She crawled out of bed to make her toilet, returned and went to sleep next to me. I lay staring up at the unfamiliar ceiling wondering what in God's name had just happened, or to be more precise, what had not happened. My cock lay unmoving on my thigh, her dried juices causing my hairs to stick together and itch. Was she really that cold? That broken? I could have sworn there was a passion behind her black clothes, could I have been wrong?
I sulked into the office the next morning in the same clothes I left in the night before. Maybelle opened her mouth to make a retort until she saw my face. She sent in Brandi with my coffee but it smelled weak. I threw a couple of bucks at Brandi and sent her down the street to the coffee shop for the deepest, blackest coffee she could find - they brew it with chicory around here and it is a devil's black brew, even milk barely changes the color.
Anyone who had been on my shitlist yesterday had it hardily confirmed that morning. More than one unlucky soul hung up the phone with a new asshole ripped out of their backside.
Maybelle came in before lunch and shut the door. She positioned the chair right in front of me and asked what happened last night.
"You wouldn't believe it if I told you," I grimaced.
"Oh, yes I would after this morning. We might have a client or two left by evening the way you're going."
I shrugged in defeat. Then I told her the entire story. Maybelle listened without comment and then asked a few pointed questions.
"Peter," she offered and I looked up because she always calls me Mr., "go on home, wash your wounds and take the afternoon off. You mean a lot to that woman but she got some deep hurt. It's gonna take time and patience on your part." She paused to consider her next words. "Do you believe that she's worth it?"
"Yeah," I said slowly.
"Then you better accept that it's not about you, it's about her. Now go on home and I'll try to repair the office damage. Sweet Jesus whom I love never brought down the hell and brimstone like you did this morning. I'm going to tell my preacher to call you for some lessons; you make him look like an novice."
Staring at her departing figure through blearied eyes I did as she suggested. A nap, a workout, and a shower restored a sense of balance.
I sat in the back of the coffee shop idly watching the couples that entered and sat, wondering what secrets they held, what their private lives were that their public faces hid. A body blocked my view for a instant and then a plaintive "I've haven't seen you in so long, Peter, how'r yew doin" drawl pierced my thoughts.
I looked up to see Little Jim's wife, Belinda, staring down at me. The only fact I can remember about this woman is that she was a cheerleader for LSU when she was in college; she still acts like one. I invited her to join me.
She still had the figure, the beaming smile, and the aura of "all is right in the world" about her. As we worked our way through the small talk, I was taking mental bets as to how many minutes it would take to get to my social life. The southern belle is the consummate interrogator, if a knife is required, the blade slips through the ribs with hardly a shiver. If an extraction is needed, she works painlessly without Novocain. Very dangerous people these southern belles.
A surreptitious glance at my watch told me seven and a half minutes.
"So, it is true that the "Black Widow" isn't a widow any more?" Belinda asked with a predatory smile.
"Where did you hear such a thing?" I responded with mock incredulity.
"Honey, I live with a man who keeps a buck's head in the freezer by the back door because I won't let him put it on the wall, whatever I want, I can get."
"I'll remember that," I rasped. I speculated whether she knew her husband was fucking anything that stood still long enough, and concluded with a small swallow that she probably did.
She waited, batting her eyes.
"We've been dating for a couple of months. It's good but we're moving slowly."
"I know what that means," Belinda remarked as she nailed me to the far wall with a look.
"You know you could do much better without having to run off to the swamp for one of those bayou babes. There are plenty of women around here who are interested in you." She took a breath.
"I know some of them, in fact," she said with a smile worthy of the pope.
"So y'all sit around and discuss who should be diddling who?" My attorney calls this redirecting the question; I call it ducking.
"Boys are so gullible. We talk about who is diddling who, and even more, who is not diddling who."
With the biggest grin I could muster I asked, "So. Who's "doing the nasty" that I would know?"
"Wrong question," she replied while stirring the cooling coffee with her fingernail, "The question today is who is not." I raised my eyebrows in anticipation as she brought her finger to her lips and gently, slowly licked the coffee of the end of her finger. Pure erotica.
"Why don't you ask one of your close friends," she suggested. "It was so good to see you again. Jim and I must have you over for dinner sometime soon. Bye now." Off she sauntered, her mission accomplished.
Little Jim was in deep shit, no doubt about it. The boy was not keeping his dick close to home even though his "Home" looked quite tantalizing to me.
The workday was still an hour from closing. I decided to swing by the office and see if Brandi was ready for her boss. Somehow, hearing that other people had problems in bed was a salve on my heart. Thinking better thoughts such as 'Belinda has a nice ass' amused me as I walked out the door.
Next Tuesday night we ended up back at my place. While our sex played out much the same, at least I had a familiar ceiling at which to stare. Marie-Claire wasn't going to stay the night but I convinced her otherwise and was rewarded with a warm body cuddled into my backside in the morning. It may not seem like much, but to me it was another forward step.
Marie-Claire had not left the house yet when my cellphone started chiming. My partner in Dallas had just finished counting last night's receipts and the restaurant in question was now the restaurant in deep shit. Before Marie-Claire left, I let her know that a trip to Dallas was on my "To Do" list.
Maybelle and I crammed behind my desk sifting through papers, plane schedules and the like. Brandi drifted in and out, getting the gist of the conversation and secretly hoping that I would need an assistant to accompany me; no way in hell. As the madness and the details came to a head, a thought occurred to me, that maybe there was something for Marie-Claire in Dallas. One search engine and two phone calls later, we found a support group for parents who had lost children to childhood diseases.
I called Marie-Claire at work and asked her to come with me to Dallas. I told her about the support group and she immediately dismissed it. I cajoled her, begged her, insulted her, and when she had softened up enough, I finally gave her the woman's number and dared her to call.