Marriage In Flames
Chapter 1

Caution: This Erotica Sex Story contains strong sexual content, including Ma/Fa, Consensual, Romantic,

Desc: Erotica Sex Story: Chapter 1 - A wife's tale of love, devotion, lies and betrayal in her second marriage.

Did you ever have someone push your buttons to the point that you were staring into the face of doing something you never thought you would do?

Well, that's where I am right now, staring at three cans of gasoline that I'm getting ready to load into the trunk of my car. I can't believe I let him push me to the point that I'm willing to take this chance.

Yes I can. I should have known better, I should have realized that he would pull this on me. It wasn't the first time, not even the second. And the only excuse I can offer as to why I kept letting him do it was love.

Stupid excuse. I'm beginning to wonder if there actually is such a thing. I mean, if you think about it, I gave up cigarettes and it about killed me, maybe love is just an addiction like that. No, I didn't think my heart was being yanked out of my chest when I quit smoking, but it did hurt, and it was hard.

Anyway, on to why I'm standing outside my home at 2 a.m., my two beautiful little girls sound asleep in their beds, staring at this gasoline. The reason was Colin.

I met Colin when I was 24 years old. I was in the process of a divorce from my first husband, a man who thought that wife and punching bag were one and the same. I'd walked out on him, my nine month old daughter in my arms, and begun the long process of finding my self-esteem once more. It wasn't easy, considering he had his friends following me, calling me at all hours with horrible threats, and knocking on my windows while I huddled on the floor in my daughter's bedroom, trying not to scream.

He strangled my dog, leaving her for me to find, tried to run me off the road, and when that didn't work, tried to terrify me with notes left everywhere, even inside of my house. I became almost a prisoner in my home, scared to go anywhere. Then my mother offered to send me back to college to finish up my degree.

Now why did that make a difference? Well, I was getting out, meeting people, going back to the college I had started at before I'd gotten married the first time. And I loved going to school. So I went back amid all the 18 and 19 year olds, feeling ancient at 24.

I made friends, I gained more confidence, and my first husband's domination over me slowly evaporated. When I quit fearing him so much, he seemed to stop most of what he'd been doing. I still got the calls and the knocks on the windows. But I saw them for just what they were - attempts to scare me - and I wasn't going to let that happen anymore.

I met Colin a third of the way through the spring semester. He was taking a nap at his friend's apartment. Since he worked nights and went to school during the day, he slept when he could. His friend was the brother of a friend of mine, and I happened to have given her a ride home that day. She invited me in, thinking she could set something up between her brother and me.

I saw Colin, laying in another man's bed, a stupid yellow Hawaiian shirt on, and it was like getting slapped in the face. I managed to make somewhat intelligible conversation. Even though he had to leave quickly, he bothered me, since he was very cute, smart and funny. And he seemed attracted to me.

Now, I'm no dog, being five seven, around one hundred and thirty pounds with sandy blonde hair that I kept cut pretty short and big gray eyes that have always been one of my best features. I'd worked hard to lose the weight I gained during my pregnancy, mostly because my first husband would beat me if he thought I'd been eating too much. And the habits that were so well learned during my short time as his wife, well, they were hard to unlearn.

But, I was five years older, married and getting divorced with a kid. What nineteen year old college boy wants to get involved with that?

Colin did. He found me the next day and started a slow and gentle campaign to win my heart. He was always careful not to scare me, never even wrestling with me until I became comfortable with him. He was understanding, and sweet, and so totally different from the man that I had been married to, that I was seeing little cartoon hearts fluttering in front of my eyes before we'd dated over two months.

And he seemed to feel the same way, asking me to marry him before that two month time period. I quickly said no way in hell, which he laughed at, and then told me that he would wait. He moved in with me, even though he had his own house which his older sister was now living in. And, as soon as he did, the threats stopped, the noises and phone calls quit. I felt like God had opened up a tiny piece of heaven just for me.

Colin took on knight in shining armor status, especially with my daughter. She loved him, climbing on his lap, bringing her books and her blankets and then settling in to be read to. She listened to him better than she did me and she started calling him "Da".

We had an amazing sex life, long marathon sessions where he'd have me panting and feeling the next day as if I'd taken advanced Yoga and learned to wrap my ankles behind my head. I actually think we tried that one time. Sex with him was wonderful and inventive and he always wanted me to be myself, to enjoy what we did.

Colin's parents lived a couple of hours drive south from where we were living, and he'd visit them on weekends, occasionally taking me with him. I loved his family, and they opened up their hearts to me and to Cassie, my daughter. I had thought there would be tension, with me being the married and not even divorced yet woman their son was sleeping with, the one with the daughter. On top of that, I was five years older than he But they accepted me, and there was never any awkwardness.

I helped Colin find a job after he graduated college, using my secretarial skills to write him a cover letter and a resume and sending them throughout the entire state of Michigan. He'd graduated with a degree in Criminal Justice, passing everything with straight A's. The invitations for job interviews started flooding in. He went everywhere, from Marquette, all the way at the top of the Upper Peninsula, to Adrian, down by the Ohio/Michigan border.

Finally, he was offered a job in the Upper Peninsula and we decided he should take it. He went, begging me to come up there with him. When I agreed, which meant selling my house, leaving my family. and moving three hundred miles from everything I knew, he decided we should get married. We'd been living together for over a year, my divorce was, at last, going to be finalized, after as much hemming and hawing as my first husband could do, and the man I loved was moving away. What could I say but yes?

In six weeks time I put together a wedding. It wasn't big long beautiful dresses and tuxes, doves being let loose at the "I dos", bands and caterers. It was family and friends, a small reception held in an old school house with a DJ. We spent our honeymoon at a Holiday Inn where I used to party when I was younger. And when the three days were up, he went back up north and I started the daunting process of packing and getting ready to move six hours away.

The move went pretty smoothly, considering that it could have been worse. We found a two bedroom apartment and I settled in to be his wife. He didn't want me to work because we'd talked about having kids right away. So, two months after the wedding, I threw away the birth control pills and we started having hot sweat bouts of sex anytime we could. It was incredible, three or four times a night, and if he was working nights, nap times for Cassie were spent heating up the sheets.

Our daughter, Katie, was born five days after our first anniversary. We bought a house and moved in. Colin worked as a city policeman. He worked different days every week, never the same shift each week. It was hard for him to adjust to the constantly changing schedules and I tried to be sympathetic.

When he was working midnights I had to keep the kids quiet so he could sleep during the day. Anyone who's been around children know how hard that can be with a toddler and a five year old. I started going down to see my mom and dad for a few days every month, taking the kids, and usually the dog, with me. That gave Conner his sleep and gave my parents time with their grandchildren whom they loved so dearly.

It wasn't a perfect existence. We fought, usually over money and bills. But then again, what couple doesn't fight over those things? Colin once showed me an article that stated that most married fights were either about the children or money. And we did both. But aside from that, I thought we were pretty happy. I adjusted to his schedule, making sure meals were ready when he'd come home for dinner or get up to get ready for work.

We spent most of his days off together, His days off, except for special occasions such as deer hunting season.

Then I started getting the phone calls.


"Yes, could I speak to Colin please," asked a strange woman's voice, no one I knew.

"I'm sorry, he isn't home right now, could I take a message?"

"Is he at work?"

"Yes, he'll be home in about an hour for dinner if you'd like to have him give you a call back."

"Ahhh, who is this?"

"This is his wife."

Silence for a moment.

"Ahh, no, I'll get a hold of him later."

And the line would go dead.

The first call I laughed off. Somebody from work, the courthouse maybe, regarding a case. It'd happened before. Colin was a cop, and had a lot of responsibilities. He took his job and his family life seriously. He wouldn't do anything to jeopardize that.

Or would he?

I got another call a few weeks later. This time the girl actually said she was from the courthouse. Which might have worked at dismissing any misgivings I had except she'd called on a Saturday. I may have been an innocent wife, but not even I was going to let that slip.

I asked him.

Now, maybe I was naïve. I've always been taught that if you can't have faith and trust in your husband then who can you. That faith had been betrayed once, and in violent and terrible ways. But Conner had never hurt me, and he'd never struck me or called me a slut or whore. He'd never belittled me in front of the children, or dragged me into my daughter's bedroom by my hair and raped me in front of her. He'd always been respectful and, I thought, honest.

He told me about how the guys go to this coffee shop every night for coffee. How there was one of the workers there who flirted with him, even after he told her he was married and not interested. And then he proceeded to tell me how his partner, Chris had given the girl our phone number.

I'd had a hard time believing that Chris would do something like that, only having just gotten married himself, but I'd been taught to believe and have faith in your husband.

A few months went by and there were no more calls. I let things go, thinking that maybe it had all happened as Colin had said.

He was working an afternoon shift and it was late summer, with the air just starting to turn colder. The leaves were changing colors, and the apples were attracting the deer to come down from the hills around us and eat right out of our side yard. It was one of my favorite times up there. Cold enough for sweaters, warm enough to enjoy the outside.

Colin was working an afternoon shift and I heard him stirring upstairs. I went into the kitchen and heated him up some soup and made him a sandwich. He came downstairs and gave me a kiss and then there was a knock at the door. Colin answered it and went outside, still dressed in his bathrobe.

I looked out the window and saw him sitting in this car. I didn't know the man in the driver seat but that was okay as there were a lot of people that he worked with who I didn't know. After an hour and a half, I put a lid on the soup kettle and wrapped up his sandwich and then sat inside and waited.

I put Barney on for the kids, dealing with the too sweet, dopey lyrics as Cassie sang along and Katie cooed and ahhed at the TV. I found myself pacing a trail into the floor from the family room with the girls to the kitchen window where I could see Colin sitting outside. Finally, I heard the dog barking and then Colin opening the door. I got up and went to him.

"Everything okay?"

He smiled, but his face looked a little green, and the smile didn't reach his eyes. He took my hand and led me into the living room, away from the kids where they were still watching Barney.

"Kelly," he said slowly, sitting down on the footstool of the chair I was sitting in and grabbing my hand. "I'm not sure how to go about telling you this."

"Just tell me, Colin." I tried to sound calm but inside I was scared. I had this feeling that my entire world was about to burst into flames.

"That man that was just here, he is a detective with the Sheriff's department. He came to tell me about some charges that are being brought against me."

"Charges? What kind of charges?" My mind was flying over the past few weeks of his work, trying to remember any incident that he had told me about that could have caused this.

"Assault charges, Kelly." He kissed the back of my hand and stared into my eyes. "I need you to listen to me, baby. Listen carefully."


"About a week ago, I was on my way up to the Big Boy in town to get a cup of coffee. I was supposed to meet a couple of the other guys up there. I happened to see one of the waitresses from the restaurant pulling into her driveway. She had the game cheat sheets on that new game we bought and said I could borrow them. Remember, I told you about that?"

I nodded, not seeing how this could add up to assault.

"Well, I pulled in behind her and we talked and she said she'd get them for me, and invited me in. So I went. She handed me the sheets and I was about ready to leave when I saw her cat, which started rubbing around my legs. I stooped down to pet the cat and lost my balance. I reached out and grabbed the first thing to keep from falling, and it was her leg."

"You grabbed her leg," I said slowly. "Grabbed it where?"

He reached out and grabbed a hold of my calf, just below my knee. "Like this."

"Okay, and?" I stared at him, confused.

"Well, she told her boyfriend that I grabbed her and he made her take it to the chief. But she told a few lies. She said that I came on to her, that I didn't grab her calf but her thigh and ran my hand all the way up to her crotch." His eyes never left my face.

"Why would she say those things?"

"I don't know for sure." He sat back and ran his hand through his hair. "I can only figure it's because of her boyfriend. I busted him for possession. Maybe this is his way of getting even."

"So did you tell them this?"

He sighed and I felt another nail being taken out of the foundation of our home life. "It's not that easy, Kel. She's throwing a fit and wants to press charges. I've been given a choice of what I can do."

He shut up and looked away from me. I could see his eyes, and how upset he was, and I vowed to stand behind him. "So what are we going to do, honey?" I asked softly.

He turned back to me and stared as if stunned. "We?" he asked.

"Yeah, we are kind of in this together. I mean, for better or for worse, right?"

Colin leaned forward and gave me a huge hug. When he leaned back, he whispered in my ear. "Thank you."

I smiled. "So what are our choices?"

"Well," he said, sighing deeply. "We can stay and I go on leave pending court findings. If I get arrested, we have to come up with money for an attorney, and we stay and fight this."


"I resign, effective immediately."

I sat back in the chair, my mind in turmoil. Lawyers, court hearings, accusations. Would he be able to work here when this whole thing was finished? Would this scandal ruin his career here? And what about the kids? What would happen at Cassie's school?" But, on the other end of it, where would we go? What would we do?

"And what do you want to do, honey?" I waited, holding my breath silently to find out what our future would hold.

"I think I should resign," he said softly.

A surge of resentment filled me, not for him, but for the woman who was causing our problems. There was no way my good and decent husband could have done the kind of things that this woman was saying and now, because of her, my children and my husband and I were looking at an uncertain future.

Colin reached out and touched my hand gently, making me realize that I was clenching my fist so hard my knuckles were white. "Honey?" he asked quietly.

"Yes, I don't want you arrested. Resign and we'll just have to make a plan." I looked up at him, sitting on the footstool in his old ratty green bathrobe that I'd never been able to get him to get rid of. "Who is this woman?"

He knew me well and started shaking his head as soon as I asked. "No, Kelly. No way. You can't go near her. It would just get me in worse trouble." He grabbed my hands in both of his. "Promise me you'll stay away from her."

I promised, but I did it resentfully. I couldn't help but want some revenge on this woman who was lying, who was hurting my family. Instead, I forced myself to pack, going through the kids' clothing, toys, books, and everything we owned with an eye to the fact that we wouldn't have a huge three bedroom house to live in anymore. We would have to downsize drastically, selling the house, and putting into storage the possessions that we couldn't fit into our new home...

Our new home? After much debating with parents, his and mine, we decided to live in a travel trailer for the time being. It was parked outside my in-laws' home, with sewage, water and electricity being provided by them. We even tapped into their phone line. We moved the two girls, our two dogs and one cat, and my husband and me into this tiny trailer.

It was a tight fit, the four of us, Cassie was a first grader and Katie was almost three and a half. All I can say is thank God for Barney and Legos. Katie would watch a Barney tape on the TV, and play with those Legos until her sister got home from school. It was cold in the winter, but we laughed about it. Colin and I would play rock, papers, scissors to see who would have to get in bed first to warm it up. Shoes froze next to the door and stuck to the carpeting. The cat found out that she could sneak under our covers and get between us and sleep under all the blankets.

But we managed. Colin got different jobs, nothing lasting really long as he tried to find a place he fit. We sold one of our two cars, and had the money from his pension plan that they cashed out for him. I cut coupons and learned to make things stretch. We paid the payment on the trailer, our phone, heat and electric bill and gave my mother-in-law a little money every month for other things.

Then my father got very ill. He had suffered a heart attack earlier and had a quadruple bypass done. He never really recovered from it. He seemed to get sicker and sicker until they finally had to rush him in for emergency surgery when his gall bladder went bad. He had problems with his breathing, and had problems walking farther than the bathroom and back to his chair.

I got the phone call that we'd better get up there if we wanted to say good-bye. And we flew over the roads. A trip that would usually take almost two hours, we made in just a little over one. We got to the hospital and the doctors said they'd pulled him through another bad patch. I remember looking in my sister's eyes and thinking, what's next?

We finally sold our old house. We had to go back up north and sign the papers. Colin and I left the girls with his mother and started the trip. Since we'd be going right by the town where my dad was in the hospital, I asked if we could stop and see him.

When we got there, we were running late, and I told Colin to forget it, we could stop on our way home the next day, since we'd be spending the night in a hotel before signing the papers in the morning. Dad would be home then, from what mom said, and we could stop there and visit with them.

We stayed in the honeymoon suite at a small motel off of US 2 right off of Lake Michigan. I could hear the lake making ice at night, groaning and grumbling outside the windows of our room. It wasn't much but it did have a big beautiful heart-shaped tub. I filled it, pouring in a little bath gel to make bubbles. When it was full, I stripped, throwing my shirt at Colin who stood watching me with a smile on his face.

When I was naked, I wiggled my finger at him and stepped into the tub, staying on my knees in the hot soapy water.

In the time since he'd resigned from being a cop, Colin had lost about thirty pounds, donut fat I liked to call it. Too much eating and riding around in cars all day long had taken the sexy man I had married and turned him into the Pillsbury Dough Boy. He'd changed that, helping his dad outside the farm they lived on, and working with trucks at his new job. He wasn't the same man I'd seen in that bed almost five years ago, but he was close.

I unbuttoned his shirt, pulling it free of his pants and letting him take it off of his arms. I ran my hands over his lightly furred chest and down over his stomach pulling his belt free before undoing his pants. He kicked out of his shoes and tore off the rest of his clothes. Living in the trailer had given us very little privacy and we'd gotten used to being quick and quiet. Tonight was a night for neither.

He climbed into the tub next to me and sat on the edge, spreading his legs so that I could get between them. I ran my soapy, wet fingers up his thighs, tracing little patterns against his skin. When I reached his groin, I looked up at him, making sure he was looking in my eyes before I ran my tongue over my teeth and along my bottom lip, smiling just a little before laving a tiny lick of my tongue across the head of his cock that was standing at attention.

He groaned and tangled his hand in my hair, caressing the back of my head. His eyes watched avidly as I took him in my mouth, suckling down the long length of his cock before coming back up to the head to swirl my tongue around the tip. I wrapped my hand around his shaft, stroking it gently while I played, doing my own thing despite his growls and groans

I felt him swell in my fingers, his shaft jumping under my hand, and I captured his lovely purple tinged head in my mouth. His growl turned into a loud groan as he shot his ropes of creamy come into my mouth, making me smile and almost pull away. It had been so long since we didn't have to be quiet to keep from waking the kids and it felt so good to be together.

He pushed me back into the water and I laughed as he sank down on top of me, kissing me while his hands roamed at will.

"You haven't done that for a while."

"You always get too noisy when I do that," I couldn't help smiling at him even while his hands made their torturously slippery way over my body, driving me nuts.

He pulled me over him and I felt his cock brush against the inside of my thigh. I raised one eyebrow at him, smiling at his quick recovery, and then groaned myself when he pushed inside of me in one swift move. His hands on the backs of my thighs, he dragged me down on him, laughing as my eyes crossed in pleasure. I quickly leaned forward and nipped him on the nose and he laughed at me again, grabbing my wrists as we played and fucked in the heart shaped tub.

Soon there was more water on the floor than in the tub and we were both exhausted. He got out and dried off and I filled the tub again, my penchant for loving long hot baths well known to him by now. He went in and got in the huge bed, hitting the remote to turn on the TV. I laughed as I heard loud moaning coming from the speakers and he started giving me a play by play of the action on the TV.

The night passed too quickly and soon we had to get up and get on our way to make our nine am appointment. The paperwork went easily and we got our check and then went to the bank to pay a few bills. You could actually pay electric and heating bills at the bank then. We decided to take off for home and stop right before the Mackinaw Bridge to get something to eat.

When we reached the restaurant I called my mom's house to see if Dad had come home or was still at the hospital. My brother, Steve, answered the phone, which surprised me. "Kelly, I don't want you freaking out, okay. Just take it easy and don't freak out on me, okay?"

"Yeah, sure, Steve. What's up?"

"Dad's dead."

I felt a sense of surrealism settle around me, as I was standing in the small alcove where they had a phone. The restaurant was busy with families eating and laughing and I was listening to my brother on the phone telling me that my father was dead.

"Kelly? Damn it. Kelly?"

"I'm here."

"They are taking his body downstate, he wanted to be buried in Monroe. We're all going down tonight."

"Okay. Um, I'll tell Colin and we'll be down as soon as we can." I said good-bye, or at least I thought I did.

I was almost to our table when it hit me. It felt like someone had taken a sledgehammer and slammed it into my stomach. Colin looked up and he must have noticed the surprised pained look on my face.

He got out of his chair and headed toward me, wrapping his arm around me. "Kel, what's wrong?"

"My dad's dead," I said. And the whole restaurant went quiet. I could hear the clatter of utensils against plates as people stared at me. Colin grabbed my coat and the check and got me out of there, sitting me in the passenger side of the car while I rocked and held my stomach and feeling like I'd never breathe again.

The rest of that week was a blur, funeral preparations, being with the family, helping my middle sister who was a complete basket case. It seemed I finally woke up the day we finally came home after burying my father. I was sitting on the small couch in the tiny living area of the trailer watching a movie on the California earthquake, the big one that had flattened out a bridge on top of a bunch of cars. I remember because there was an older man trapped in one car, his hair was white and his face tanned and lined, looking kind of like my dad. I watched as he died and finally felt the tears stream down my eyes. My wonderful husband was in bed. I heard him roll over and then heard his voice.

"Aren't you done with that yet?"

It was like being slapped in the face. As a matter of fact, I think I would have preferred the slap. At least with the slap, the pain is gone in a couple of hours. This pain, the hurt of his not caring about my mourning, stayed a lot longer. I still couldn't help but feel it.

It got easier as spring started to arrive, showing in the snow melting and the tiny green shoots of grass that peeped between the mushy white. Colin got a job, a good one, and things began looking up. We got a down payment on a house together and we started looking. It was a long process. Whenever we found one we liked, we couldn't afford it or it was too far away for it to be practical. What we could afford was horrid. Colin ran into an old friend of his one day and surprise, he had a house for sale. We went and checked it out.

I wasn't thrilled. It was huge, an old farm house that needed a lot of work. The kitchen was small and painted an ugly color, the living room was a nicotine yellow color. The stairs were narrow and the treads small with a turn at the top that was dangerous. There was a hallway with a foot high wall that surrounded the stairwell.

Having two young children, that open stairwell scared me. But Colin did some talking and after living in that trailer for as long as we had, the idea of having our own things again, of being able to spread out and let the kids run, was just too wonderful. So we bought it and moved in on the Fourth of July weekend.

It was the start of the end.

John and Laurie were our next door neighbors, and I tried to get along with them. They had four kids, all boys, who had a tendency to run through the house at all times of the day and night. They were close in age to my girls, and the kids liked to play together so I learned to deal with the excess noise and the exuberant behavior. I stocked up on band-aids because I've never seen a more accident prone group of kids. Someone was always bleeding or bumped or bruised...

Laurie was a little strange. The first few times I tried to talk to her, she seemed either stuck up or shy. I wasn't quite able to make up my mind which. She liked the girls, though, and seemed to be good to them so I kept trying.

Colin was working on the house when he wasn't working at his job. He had torn off all the loose shingles from the roof and we'd gone out and bought new ones, so I was out helping him a lot on the ladder. That's the first time I saw Laurie out in the back yard in her bikini, laying in the sun. She had the type of body that would bounce back from child birth without exercise and diet and I hated her. I still carried an extra ten pounds from Katie's birth. I saw Colin's eyes slide toward her and then back when he noticed me watching him. I tried to make a joke about it, but it bothered me.

We invited them for dinner and cards. I'd gone into the kitchen to get the kids Kool-aid and John had gone to pick up something at home. When I walked back into our dining room I found Laurie wrapped in my husband's arms. When I asked what was going on, Colin gave me a look as if I should keep my mouth shut.

Finally he told me that Laurie's mom had passed away earlier in the past year, like my own father had, and it was her birthday. She was upset and he was just comforting her. He was comforting her when he hadn't had the time or patience to comfort his own wife days after her father had died. I couldn't believe the incredible amount of rage I felt.

It was the first time in all of our marriage that we slept with out backs to each other.

Slept, that was funny, I lay there most of the night, not moving, until finally I just couldn't stand it anymore. I got up and went downstairs and paced. When Colin got up, he kissed me on the forehead, took a shower and went about his day as if nothing had happened. I couldn't believe that he couldn't see how upset I was about this whole thing.

Time passed, and while I might not have forgotten about what happened that night, I'd decided to let it lie. He didn't seem overly interested in what was going on next door though we did manage to walk in on some spectacular fights. And some other things that really disturbed me.

Laurie had moments when she seemed almost another person, and a mean-tempered one at that. She would invite us to her home and then start fights with John, on purpose it seemed to me. One night, after a particularly bad fight, with Colin and I being the unwilling witnesses, John went outside to get some air. Laurie got up right after him and locked the back door on him, effectively barring him from the house. I looked at Colin and then went and sat with the girls, wishing that we could just leave. My children didn't need to see this.

John broke down the door. A part of me was impressed with his forcefulness, another part was having flashbacks to my first marriage and I felt a whimper build and want to come out of my throat. I watched as John stalked Laurie across the room and I held my children against me so they wouldn't see what was going on.

Laurie came at John, her hands curled into claws. John threw up his hands to defend himself and hit Laurie, knocking her down where she scooted across the floor and curled into a ball in the corner.

I sat there with my mouth open and nothing coming out. In my heart, I don't believe that John meant to hit Laurie. I believe he was defending himself. I'd seen scratches on him before, cuts and bruises that he'd laughed off and said were from work. And now I knew the truth, that Laurie was crazy.

I stood, picked up Katie, and gathered her close to me. Without saying a word to either of them, or to my husband who seemed to just be standing there, I walked out of the house and took my girls home to put them to bed. Cassie had all kinds of questions, mostly wondering why Laurie was so mean to Uncle John, as she had taken to calling our neighbor.

If I saw it and an eight year old child saw it, how could no one else see it?

Colin didn't get home for another two hours. When he finally did, he looked white faced and tensed. I didn't ask questions because I knew he really didn't want to talk. Instead, I took him to bed and we held each other while he stroked my hair. When he told me he loved me that night, I said a prayer of thanks to whatever deity wished to receive it that I had a man like Colin in my life.

Weeks went by, school started and Cassie was in the third grade. Katie stared going to a nursery school twice a week for three hours each session. The first few times were traumatic for both of us. Katie cried and begged me not to leave her. But finally, we both overcame the trauma and she started liking school. We went to a few parties on the weekends, places where welcome also, and I met a few people. I grew to enjoy the house we had and liked the area. At the time, it wasn't a big town but it was growing and I was learning my way around.

Colin had cousins he was very close to, and one of them had been spending a lot of time with him. Her name was Susan and she was younger than both of us, him by five years and me by ten. I liked it and enjoyed the times she would come over and we'd talk or do something together. It had started that Sue came over to see Colin, but before long, she was coming over to spend time with me.

We would sit and talk, and the two of us found out we both liked to take walks at night. So we would leave Colin with the girls and stroll down the road on nights that it was nice enough. She'd usually spend the night, which I didn't mind. I would leave Sue and Colin downstairs to spend some time together and turn in, knowing Colin would be up soon himself.

Deer hunting season was coming. Colin had managed to get a week off, his first time in the years since we'd been together that he could go up with his male family members to hunt. I wanted him to go, for a couple of reasons. I loved venison, and growing up with hunters, we'd always had deer in the freezer. The second reason was that he deserved some time off. He worked hard and helped his friends and family. I don't know how many times he'd gone next door to try to help John and Laurie since their problems started. And I was grateful for the type of man that he was that would be there for his friends.

So I didn't kick up too much fuss when he said he wanted to leave the weekend before opening day. Yes, it was three days before he could actually hunt, but I knew he would get enjoyment out of that time, going up north to the cabin that his parents owned and he loved, spending time with his cousins. One of them was going up with him.

He left me some money and told me to take the girls shopping. And then he was gone. John called about an hour after Colin left. Laurie and he had had another fight and she wanted to go away for a weekend to get some perspective. He'd made the arrangements, helped her carry her suitcase to the car. He'd even arranged for a beautiful bouquet of roses to be left in her room before she got there.

We sat and talked for a while and I got an earful of Laurie's problems. Probably more than I'd actually wanted to know. She was bi polar and refused to take her medicine. Surprise, surprise. The woman changed moods more than the most fickle woman changed her mind. She was hard to get along with, which I knew. And he wanted to thank me for letting my husband spend so much time with Laurie recently.

Whoa. Laurie was spending time with Colin? I thought he was over there with the both of them.

No. John said that they would take off and go for a drive, that Laurie was so happy she'd found someone she could actually talk to.

Yeah, my husband was a great guy. I started to get this bad feeling. And I couldn't shake it off. I got off the phone with John and sat in my chair, looking at the dark outside while I heard my children playing above me in their bedroom.

Colin wouldn't... No, that was too impossible to think of, he loved me. I tried to get my mind off it, but thoughts of the two of them together kept popping into my head even after Laurie got back from her weekend away. Why didn't Colin tell me that he and Laurie were taking drives together?

But did I want to play the overly suspicious wife and ask him, maybe cause a fight if there wasn't anything to fight over?

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Story tagged with:
Ma/Fa / Consensual / Romantic /