The Old Man's Tale
Drink and vanity have always been my two besetting sins; well vanity usually made worse by drink. Oh, and lechery but... I'll explain.
I'd been for a drink with my mate James one evening and as usual, after several pints of bitter, we had gone back to his place for a drop of scotch. Well, there I am, stretched out in a chair in front of the fire, single barrel malt in hand, when he tells me that he has a bit of a problem that I might be able to help him with. Ha - that's something new! It seems he has a business interest that is coming to fruition, but the agency handling the publicity is just not coming up with the goods. They're fairly local he tells me, having kept it that way so that he could keep an eye on it.
"Change them," I say.
"Too late now," he replies, "they've less than a fortnight to get it all together."
"So what do you want me to do?" I ask. But, of course, I've already worked it out.
What he wants me to do is go and stand over them and get what he wants done, he assures me that he has every confidence that I will get it just right. Manipulative old bastard. And I tell him so.
"You don't spend your life working for big corporations without learning a thing or two, especially about creatives," he tells me, grinning from ear to ear.
Creatives are basically artists and that is what I am. I started out in graphics, but, since being left on my own, I have been eking out an existence as a full time artist. Piss artist if I take this one on; but the vanity is already piqued.
So the following Monday, bright and early - God knows, I just hate that - I am talking to the partner in charge and feeling very much like a pork sausage at a bar mitzvah. I am feeling my way very gently, because he isn't a happy bunny. Neither would I be.
"How about showing me what has been done," I suggest, "I been briefed on what's required."
"I'll take you along, and introduce you," he says, "although what you can do at this stage, I really don't know."
Nice to start on a positive note, but what did I expect?
We go along a corridor and into a large office.
"This is Michelle," he introduces us. "She has had charge of the project and will show you everything. She's very experienced and has done a lot of excellent work."
I am stunned, not that you would notice, of course. I've had many years selling, plus some of the old amateur dramatics, and it all counts in the instantaneous recovery. If I am fazed, it doesn't show.
But nevertheless... I am introduced to the most gorgeous creature I can remember seeing in many decades of lechery. She is thirtyish, quite tall; with a slim almost boyish figure; she has a face that I feel I could paint and paint time after time set on a long neck. She has a pale complexion over a superb bone structure. Her auburn hair is pulled back and forms a mass of curls on the back of her head. That description doesn't do her justice, but neither would my painting. I have little doubt that she could launch several thousand ships. She is young enough to be my daughter. But she isn't.
Dream on old man and concentrate on work.
Well, she isn't going to make me very welcome either. We spend the rest of the morning going through all the stuff, and I can see what James means. Oh, it's all top quality work; it just doesn't quite fit the bill. Just a degree off. And I need time to think.
First a word with the partner to clear what I have in mind, to which he reluctantly agrees and I return.
"Lunch," I say, "I know a nice little place just out of town."
You might think that I had suggested attending a public hanging for all the enthusiasm she displays, but the job is important. So she comes along.
I fire up the tart cart, well ok, maybe that's putting it a bit strong after all I have had it several years and only paid two fifty for it, but it's black with leather and everything is electric; some of it even works. Anyway we leave town, and my little way out of town turns into twenty miles, and I am turning on as much charm as I dare. I want to get her away from her own environment, so that I have the best chance to get her on my side. Don't, for one minute get me wrong, all this is in the interests of the job, I did say this girl is young enough to be my daughter, and whilst I can dream, that is all it's going to be.
During lunch she begins to thaw, still not happy but the old magic (ho, ho) is starting to work. That and a couple of glasses of quite expensive wine, bear in mind that I am not paying, and James never drinks rubbish, so why should I? Oh, and the food is excellent.
"You've met James I presume?" I ask
"Oh yes, he seems like a nice guy," she replies, rather non-commitally.
"OK," I say, "we'll go and see him at home, walk the dogs, you'll get more of a feel for the guy, and don't worry, you're not expected back."
"Oh." Is all she says.
By the time we get back to town it's well past knocking off time and the thaw seems pretty well complete. James has helped to relax her, and tea in front of the fire is something that seems new to her, and she really enjoys it. The dogs like her too, but then they like me; so that's nothing to go by. We agree to start work at eight the next morning and get things on the right track. Unfortunately, I have still no idea what that track is, but I have all night to think about it.
So I get home and head for the pub.
The next morning I am there at eight, and ready for a brainstorming session. I have ideas, not too radical, it's too late for that, but they need knocking into shape. A word with the partner, who now seems quite enthusiastic (I have a suspicion that he had a phone call last night, but as long as the job gets done, I don't much give a monkey's) and we are under way.
At the end of the following week it's all done, all on time, James is ecstatic, and everyone at the agency is very happy.
So a good job jobbed, and shall we go for a celebration drink? Too right we will.
An hour or so later we all head off for our respective homes. As we leave Michelle asks me if I will give her a lift home because she had a problem with her car that morning. I am only too delighted to extend my stay in the company of a girl, who has become a friend for whom I have considerable respect. She really is very able, very clever, great company, and, oh yes, still gorgeous. I'd have thought that conversation with someone that much younger would be difficult, but it never seems to be.
When we arrive at her home she asks me in for another drink. Now, if I am honest, out around the back roads of the countryside at night I have been known to drive when I perhaps didn't ought to, but in town... I happily accept an invitation for coffee.
Home is an apartment that occupies the top floor of a large old house in a part of town which was once exclusive, and today is still desirable. It is partially in the roof, and largely open plan. It is a proper conversion, and judging by the space, and the furniture this young lady is very well set. It is all very tidy, a total contrast to the tip that I infest, but like me she has lots of pictures, some originals, and some are signed prints. None of mine but there you go. Actually most of my work is three dimensional, although some of it could hang on walls. Michelle puts the kettle on and fusses around with mugs and filters and things, whilst we chat about the pictures, and whatever. Then she disappears to the bathroom.
She returns a few minutes later, and finishes the coffee, whilst I lean against the kitchen units behind her.
Milk - yes, sugar - no, she turns with a mug in each hand and looks so kissable that I lean forward and do just that
Did I not mention her mouth? How very remiss of me. She has the most beautiful full lips, with a perfect cupids bow and they are clearly delineated without the need for the little lipstick she uses. She returns the kiss. I break off after a few moments because it really isn't fair to make her stand there with a mug in each hand - not fair, but it makes it very difficult for her to resist. She looks at me and smiles. She sets the coffee mugs back on the countertop, and we are immediately back into a major clinch. This seems to go on for ever, but after perhaps half an hour, half a lifetime, or possible only a couple of minutes, I scoop her up and carry her to the couch in the sitting area. I settle beside her, and as I put my arm back around her to continue the kiss, I brush my hand across her right breast. Through her blouse I can feel a very nice small firm breast without the benefit of a brassiere - funny I would have sworn she had one on earlier, I notice these things - and a little while later, who knows how long, I tease the hem of her blouse from the waist of her trousers and slide my hand up to encase these magical manifestations of femininity. With firm upstanding nipple, and just the right resilience this is something I could play with for hours. Well, a few minutes anyway, before we head further south.
.... There is more of this story ...