This story took place in the late 70's. It shows that not everything is as it seems. And wanting to believe something doesn't necessarily make it so. It is a work of fiction but as in most of my stories it is inspired by an event that really occurred and by characters that really existed.
I was having my second cup of coffee, rubbing the stubble on my face and contemplating the unpleasant task ahead of me. My wife and I had just returned late last night from a road trip to Yellowstone Park with another couple. When we finally pulled into the driveway we had just enough energy to drag ourselves out of the van and into bed. Debbie had to work this Monday morning but I got to sleep in a couple more hours. I didn't have to report for my shift until four this afternoon.
My name is Dave Dawson and my wife is Debbie. We have been married a year last month. The trip was kind of an anniversary gift. Debbie had just been working long enough to accumulate five days vacation time so with weekends we had nine days to make the drive and see the sights. Plus we were planning on starting our family anytime now and we didn't see another long vacation coming for a while.
So we decided to make the trip while all the stars were still in alignment. Friends of ours, John and Kathy Harrison made the trip with us. With the four of us we were able to drive straight through and straight back, allowing us to spend a full seven days camping in the park. John and Kathy had a fifteen month old baby boy and Kathy's mother just happened to be available that week to stay at their house and babysit.
I walked out to the driveway and opened the side doors of my two year old custom Chevy van. If you can imagine how much debris four adults can accumulate on a nine day road trip that is what I was looking at. John and Kathy had managed to get most of their stuff out when we dropped them off last night. Looking at the mess, I gave a sigh and started to dig in.
Our suitcases were still sitting on the floor along with a box of food, a cooler, camping gear and a pile of dirty clothes. The suitcases went back into the house. Dirty laundry went down the laundry chute. Contents of the cooler went back into the refrigerator. Food went back into the pantry. And the camping and fishing gear back into the garage.
I took a look at the bed that I had built across the back of the van and knew I just might as well pull the mattress out and vacuum the entire floor. I got the dry-vac and a wastebasket out of the garage, opened the rear doors and took a hold of the bedding and started pulling. The double mattress had been custom made and was a tight fit across the width of the van. It finally let go with a rush and I swore as I fell on my ass as the mattress, bedding and a flurry of miscellaneous debris came out all at once.
I picked myself up and separated out the bedding and set it aside to wash. I took the wastebasket and started to fill it up with all the trash that had come out with the mattress. McDonald's wrappers, beer can pop tops, wadded up tissues, crushed Styrofoam coffee cups, a condom wrapper...
I stopped, looking at that last item stupidly. I sat down; suddenly dizzy, thinking to myself, 'now how did that get there?' I smoothed the torn wrapper across my knee. 'Trojan Ultra-Thin' the front read. Something wasn't right.
I knew it wasn't there before we left for Yellowstone. I had cleaned the van thoroughly including removing the mattress, vacuuming and putting on fresh bedding before we loaded up.
As I absentmindedly fingered the wrapper I considered the possibilities. Debbie had gone off the pill the month before. We had decided to start our family as soon as she had completed her first year in her job. John and Kathy made no secret of the fact she was on the pill until their little boy turned two. Then they were planning on getting pregnant for their second one.
I thought, maybe it's a practical joke? John sometimes had a quirky sense of humor, especially after having a few beers. I considered the possibility for a few minutes.
Then I grabbed the wastebasket and dumped the contents onto the driveway. I started pawing through the trash examining it closely until I came to a wad of balled up tissue. I thoughtfully considered it as I gingerly pulled it apart. As the last layer of tissue peeled away it revealed an unmistakable dried up crumpled condom. No, not a practical joke...
Suddenly nauseous, I sat back down abruptly and put my head between my knees trying not to throw up. The logic was inescapable. One - Someone had sex in my van using a condom, most likely to prevent pregnancy. Two - That someone wasn't me. Three - The only woman on this trip in danger of getting pregnant was Debbie.
As I sat there hunched over I thought about the details of our trip. The only time John and Kathy had slept in the van was while we were on the road. When we camped, they had brought a two man tent with an air mattress and they slept in that. Debbie and I had slept alone in the van when we were in the park.
The four of us spent most of the week doing things together. Hiking, swimming or sightseeing. Together except for one afternoon. About our fourth day in the park I had wanted to hike to a small lake that was about five miles off the road. It had a waterfall and was said to have some good sized fish in it. I thought I would take my fishing rod, a few lures and give it a try.
Kathy was up for it but Debbie said she was tired and didn't want to go. John offered to stay back with Debbie and go into town to pick up a few groceries we were running short on. So after an early lunch Kathy and I headed down the trail. It was more than five hours later when Kathy and I finally returned to our campsite, tired but pleased with our excursion.
Debbie and John had dinner started on our small propane stove and were sitting around having a beer. Apparently they had drunk more than a couple that afternoon as a sack full of empties could attest. They were yucking it up and Debbie was giggling, laughing and generally tipsy. I saw Kathy frown when she saw what was going on. John's drinking was sometimes a problem and by all accounts they frequently argued about it.
That night Debbie was unusually amorous when we went to bed. We had abstained so far on the trip since John and Kathy pitched their tent only a few feet away. And it was so warm we slept with the van doors open except for the mosquito netting.
As soon as we crawled up onto the bed she jerked my shorts down without any foreplay and popped my cock into her mouth and started vigorously working it. I stifled a groan as she fondled my balls and slobbered all over me as she gave me an enthusiastic blowjob. I played with her nipples until I finally pulled my rock hard cock out of her mouth and rolled her over and started sucking on them.
She tried to get me to go down on her the rest of the way but I knew if I did she would start moaning loud enough to wake the whole campground. I stuck my hand between her legs and starting working a finger, then two into her pussy. She was as wet and ready as I had ever seen her.
I entered her slowly but easily as she gasped with lust. I started a slow rhythm as she wrapped her legs around my waist and urged me faster and faster in a rising whisper. Within a few strokes she came so hard and so vocal I had to put my hand over her mouth to keep her quiet. As I continued to stroke into her she came twice more until I unloaded with a muffled groan.
As I lay there trying to catch my breath, I thought that Debbie had never come so quick and so many times in one short session. I figured the enforced abstinence and a few beers had lit her fuse. As we both drifted off to sleep I didn't give it any more thought.
The next morning John had looked at me with a smug look like he had heard what we had been up to the night before. Now it occurred to me that the look was more like 'You dumb shit, I just banged your wife and you have no clue!' And the sick feeling I felt in my gut was telling me that I was beginning to believe it too.
I staggered to my feet and mechanically continued my task of cleaning the van. But first I carefully put the wrapper and the wadded up condom into a bag and tucked it away in the garage. For why, I wasn't quite sure. Maybe so later I wouldn't convince myself I had just imagined finding it. I certainly didn't like the conclusion it pointed to.
As I cleaned up the inside of the van and then got out the hose and started washing the outside, my mind drifted back three years before when Debbie and I met.
I had just turned twenty years old and it was the second semester of my sophomore year at Northern Michigan University. I was an electrical engineering major and doing okay scholastically but money troubles were wearing me down. I never qualified for a scholarship so I had paid for the last two years using the money I saved working during high school and in the auto plants the last two summers.
But the money was coming to an end. I knew I couldn't earn enough this coming summer for my junior year and the part time jobs I had during the school year provided just enough for a little pocket money.
Mom and Dad had never been able to help me much either. We were Catholic and I had three younger brothers and sisters at home. Our parents had insisted we all attend parochial school, at least through ninth grade. As a result they were still paying tuition for the two youngest. My oldest sister was attending public high school as a senior.
The way I saw it I had two choices. Start taking student loans and graduate with a staggering financial burden or drop out for two years and try to save enough to finish out my degree.
I had about decided that a break would be a good thing. The constant deadlines and exams had gotten to be a drag. And I was tired of living in a four man quad room. No matter how hard you tried you always ended up with at least one asshole room mate. I had already written a letter to the Employment Office at the assembly plant I had worked the previous summer to inquire about a job.
It was a Friday night and mid-terms had just ended. Several of us from the dorm decided to wade through a couple of feet of snow to an off campus party to celebrate. It was one of those typical frat house beer keg bashes. All the beer you can drink. Guys paid five dollars and girls got in free. The music was loud and there would be dancing in some rooms and drinking games in others. Before the night was over a few guys would get lucky and get laid in one of the upstairs bedrooms.
I dated occasionally while I was at college but I hadn't had a regular girlfriend since high school. While not a virgin, I had lost that the night of my senior prom; I could count on the fingers of one hand with digits left over the girls I had been with. The engineering curriculum was tough and I was always working part-time. What spare time I had I spent in the Intramural Sports building playing pick-up basketball or occasionally racquetball.
When we got to the house one of my roommates, Josh pointed to a group over in a corner and I just nodded and told him I would bring him a beer.
I snaked my way through groups of kids dancing or talking trying not to spill the two plastic cups I had gotten from the keg guy. I finally spotted Josh talking to a couple of girls on the far side of the room. As I came up beside him, he reached out and grabbed one of the cups and said, "Dave, I want you to meet Miranda. We're in Econ 202 together. And this is her roommate Debbie. This is Dave."
I smiled at Miranda, a cute looking brunette and held out my hand, "Hi Miranda, nice to meet you." And then I turned to her roommate and held out my hand and I froze. Facing me was one the most beautiful girls I had ever seen.
She had long reddish blond hair and green eyes that gave away her Irish heritage, a smile that lit up the room and sensuous lips that just begged to be kissed. Even in blue jeans, hooded sweatshirt and a winter scarf hanging around her neck it was obvious there were some serious curves under there.
I finally woke up with Josh, Miranda and Debbie all laughing at me. I blushed, and apologized, "Uh, sorry. I didn't mean to be rude."
I couldn't help myself. I looked Debbie right in the eye and blurted out, "But you are the most beautiful girl I have ever met."
Now it was her turn to blush, "Well, thanks Ken. A girl can't hear that enough." And she laughed.
Josh said, "You know you two are practically neighbors back home. Debbie is from DeWitt."
"No kidding, I'm from Okemos. Did you go to DeWitt high school?"
"No. I attended Gabriel's Catholic High School." She said.
"Hey, I'm Catholic too but my parents couldn't afford the tuition there." I said.
The two of us started talking and slowly drifted off by ourselves to one of the corners. Gabriel's was the high school that served about a half dozen parishes including mine and Debbie's. Many of my friends from my Catholic middle school went there. Turns out she knew several of them and we both had graduated the same year.
We talked and talked, totally unaware of the time, until Miranda finally came up and said, "Hate to split you two up, but it's after midnight and snowing again. We should head back to the dorm."
Debbie looked at me, regretfully I thought, and said, "Well I guess I should go."
Trying not to sound desperate I said, "Wait, I'd like to get together with you again. Can I call you?"
Smiling shyly, "Okay, I'm in East Shaw Hall."
"Debbie, I don't even know your last name."
"It's 'Koenigsknecht'. I know ... it's a mouthful." She said a little embarrassed.
I stared at her in amazement. "You're a 'K-13'!"
The first Koenigsknecht's had emigrated from Germany back in the mid to late 1800's and settled in several communities in mid-Michigan. Over the next fifty to seventy-five years they were so prolific that their children dominated many of the country schools. The story was that one exasperated teacher finally nicknamed them the 'K-13's' for the thirteen letters in their name. And it stuck.
Then she really laughed, "Guilty! But my mom is full blooded Irish."
"You're not going to believe this. I have an uncle who married a 'K-13' from up around Standish." I said.
"No kidding? Call me and we can talk some more." She said as Miranda had a hold of her arm pulling her toward the door.
"You can bet on it." I said to her and watched them head out into the night.
The very next day I called her back. I was so enthralled with her I couldn't wait. We got together for pizza a day later. It was still a school night but we spent several hours together talking about school, friends from back home and our families.
After graduating from high school her parents had wanted her to attend a college close to home. But she had had enough of being under the parental thumb. She had applied to several in-state schools and selected the one farthest from home. Four hundred miles was enough to cut the strongest apron strings.
Debbie was a marketing major and had worked for the same retail chain the last couple of summers. And she had been hired to be an intern in their business office this coming break. She was attending college on a combination of a partial scholarship and student loans which made it a priority to keep her grades up.
She had two sisters, one older and one younger. Her parents were still paying high school tuition for the younger one and the oldest was attending a state college down near Detroit. So they were stretched pretty thin and could provide only limited assistance.
She admitted to being a junior varsity cheerleader back in high school but had never tried out for the varsity. She loved the water and had worked as a lifeguard at a local country club during her last two summers in high school.
Apparently her parents were quite strict with her and her sisters. She talked like she hadn't been allowed to date much while in high school. I found out later from Miranda through Josh that she had been making up for lost time since coming to college. She had guys lining up to go out with her. She dated once or twice a week but wasn't going steady.
I was determined to get close to her. I asked her out again and for the rest of the semester we went out regularly. We always had a great time. She had a great personality and sense of humor. I could sit and listen to her for hours. She loved the college parties and we would go and have a couple of beers and dance a little.
As the weather warmed up I was able to see her in something besides boots and bulky sweatshirts. Man, was she built! When I saw her in a tank top and shorts for the first time I began to doubt myself. I mean Debbie was model material, what was she doing going out with me? She was about 5'7", one hundred ten pounds with a narrow waist, gently flaring hips and firm breasts with legs to die for.
In contrast I was just a fraction over six foot and weighed one ninety. I had brown hair and brown eyes and regular but non-descript features. I was in good shape from regular exercise but my appearance would best be described as 'stocky'. I had a somewhat dark complexion but I didn't stand out in a crowd.
We dated until the semester ended about six weeks later but all that time I knew she was also going out with others. We had gotten past the kissing stage after the second date. And we had a couple of heavy make out sessions with a little petting the last couple of times we were out. She seemed to be as hot as I was for it to continue and I had hoped that fact might encourage her to cut back on her seeing other guys. But it didn't seem to happen.
The last date we had before the semester ended we talked about seeing each other when we got back home. We only lived about twenty miles apart and she said she would love to keep seeing me. But then for the first time I told her of my decision not to return to school the next school year.
When she realized I meant it she seemed to pause and considered me closely. I thought she accepted the idea and my rationale. But later that night instead of snuggling down somewhere together for awhile she announced that she needed to study for her last exam. With that damper put on our evening I took her back to her dorm. She gave me a quick kiss and a hug and ran inside without a word about me calling her when we got back home.
Thoughtfully I trudged back to my dorm wondering what had happened. After my last exam and before I left campus I tried to call her but one of her roommates said she wasn't around. I knew her parents had come up to get her and thought maybe they were out someplace.
Moving back in with your parents and siblings is always an adjustment. But we seemed to work it out. And the day after getting home I started back to work at the plant. I was fortunate to get a quality control job on day shift. At least for the first ninety days, after that I would probably rotate to one of the other shifts.
I tried calling Debbie a couple of times in the evening at her mom and dad's but they always said she was out. I left my number but I had the sinking sensation that she had blown me off. The thought left me heartbroken but I suspected if I kept pursuing her it wouldn't end any better.
About a week later I was surprised when mom handed me the phone and said, "It's someone named Debbie."
When I answered Debbie apologized for missing me the first couple of times I called and hoped I wasn't mad at her. I assured her I wasn't. We talked a while about final exams and our new jobs. Finally she said softly, "Dave, I was hoping you were calling to ask me out."
"I was Debbie, but since I hadn't been able to get a hold of you the last couple weeks I got the impression that you didn't care to hear from me." I said sadly.
"No, no Dave. Please don't think that. I admit I was a little put off when you told me you weren't coming back to school. I didn't know what to think. But I would like to go out with you again." She said.
That started a great summer. With both of us working days we could get together a couple a times a week. And I was pretty sure she wasn't dating anyone else. Eventually I met her family and she met mine. We all seemed to hit it off except for my oldest sister. For some reason she didn't seem to warm up to Debbie. But I just shrugged it off.
We would go out to the movies, dinner, and an occasional party with her friends or my friends from high school. A couple of times we went to the beach at Lake Michigan when we could get a day off together. Seeing Debbie in a bikini brought tears of joy to my eyes.
We would fool around in the lake and she would laugh at me when I got a stiffy in my swim shorts and couldn't get out of the water. We were back to making out and pushing the envelope a little further every time we got together.
Towards the end of July I decided that I couldn't live at home for the two years it would take me to save enough money to return to school. I was getting a pretty good paycheck and decided I could afford a small apartment. But the biggest reason was I really wanted to get Debbie alone. I was pretty sure we were in agreement where our relationship was going next.
Mom and dad took the news gracefully and helped me scrounge up some decent used furniture from friends and relatives. I moved just a few weeks before Debbie had to return to school.
That first weekend we went out to dinner and came back to the apartment, both of us aware of what was going to happen. Inside the door I took her into my arms and gave her a long lingering kiss, our tongues gently feeling each others lips. Debbie pulled away and took me by the hand and led me into the bedroom.
We stood together in the dark and we slowly undressed each other. As our last items of clothing hit the floor we came together and put our arms around each other and kissed again. My rock hard cock was trapped against her belly. She pulled away and took me in her hands and gently stroked me.
"Debbie, do you want me to use a condom?" I whispered.
Looking me in the eye she said, "I'm not a virgin, Dave. And I went on the pill last month. Is that okay?"
Not really surprised I nodded and gently caressed her breasts and nipples. We slowly fell backward onto the bed. As we did her legs came up and my cock nestled into her pubic hair probing for her damp entrance. We both knew that later there would be a time for lingering foreplay but right now we needed this. I entered her slowly and steadily until she groaned, "Stop."
I did and she pulled her legs back further and wiggled her pussy up against me gaining the last fraction of an inch. I pulled back and pushed forward all the way feeling myself bottoming out. She gasped out, "You got it all, Dave. Do it, do it to me now!"
I started stroking in and out slowly picking up speed. God, it felt so good I knew I couldn't last long. But I needn't have worried, within a half dozen strokes she started screaming, "I'm coming, I'm coming!" I slammed into her one more time and held myself at my deepest penetration and came so hard it hurt. We both held onto each other for dear life until we both started to relax. She licked my ear and whispered, "God, Dave that was worth waiting for!"
That night we made love three more times until I had to take her home. Each time seemed better than the last. A couple of times we got into the shower to play and clean each other up before we would do it again. The evening was one long session of continuous foreplay and experimentation to see what each other liked. And there wasn't much we didn't like.
For the next three weeks Debbie would spend the evening with me every few days. One night she told her parents she was spending the night with a girlfriend and stayed over until morning. It was wonderful.
Those long evenings gave us the opportunity to explore more than our bodies. I wanted to know everything about her. We talked for hours on end. She told me how much she loved college, the classes, the social aspects and just the whole experience. She really felt stressed about staying at home because she said her parents still tried to control her social life.
As the time for her to return to school approached, I got more and more depressed. The last night we spent together we talked after making love slowly and tenderly. I said, "Debbie, I know we have avoided talking about this but with you leaving tomorrow I think we need to. I think I love you. And I don't want to stop seeing you."
Debbie hung her head and bit her lip. "I like you a lot Dave, maybe it's love, I don't know. But we have been dating only a few months. I don't want to stop seeing you either. But we are going to be four hundred miles apart most of the school year and we both are going to be busy."
Trying not to sound desperate I said, "Can we, can we try to get together a couple of times before Christmas break?"
"Sure Dave, we can try." She said not sounding convinced.
"Debbie, I want you to know you are the only girl for me and I want to give you something before you leave." And I pulled a jewelry box out of the night stand and opened it for her. Inside was an amethyst ring in white gold with a diamond chip on each side. Amethyst was her birth stone.
Debbie's eyes got big and hands came up in front of her mouth. "Oh, Dave it's beautiful!"
"Debbie, I'd like you to wear it. And when you look at it, think of me, please?"
She put it on her finger and with tears in her eyes hugged me. "Of course I will, Dave."
After that night we only spoke on the phone once more before she left for school. I had offered to drive Debbie but her dad had bought a five year old car for her so she could get around at school. I was disappointed with our conversation that last night and her lack of enthusiasm for what I was trying to say. I wanted her to be my girl. I wanted us to be exclusive. If we had still been in high school I'd have asked her to go 'steady.' Instead I was afraid she was trying to let me down gently.
With Debbie gone I did very little else but work. Several times a week I would meet some guys at the YMCA and play basketball. And nearly every weekend I would hang out at mom and dads and they would make sure I was well fed. Every couple of days I would call up to Debbie's dorm. About half the time I would catch her in. I also wrote a couple of times a week. We talked and wrote about her coming down or me coming up but we never seemed to be able to work it out. Eventually the calls and letters started to dwindle.
A couple of weeks after Debbie left, I was asked if I would like to take the exam for the Electrician's Apprenticeship program at work. It could take anywhere from two to four years to complete depending on how many hours I put in over a month but I would receive some credit for my two years of college.
It paid about twenty per cent more than I was making now and the company would pay for college level technical classes. Even if I quit before I completed it I would be further ahead pay wise. I took the exam and passed easily. I started the program a short time later.
I loved the apprenticeship program. I had always loved gadgets, stereo equipment and pretty much anything electronic. It was what drove me to major in electrical engineering in the first place. And I was always handy with tools. I was given the opportunity to work almost unlimited overtime. And as I gained more and more experience journeymen electricians would ask me to assist them on side jobs for which we usually got paid cash.
With all the money coming in I could pretty much buy whatever I wanted as far as toys but I still had the dream of finishing school. I didn't even date even though I often had opportunities. I was in love with Debbie and that was my other dream. So the money went in the bank or into a couple of investments.
A couple of weeks before Thanksgiving during one of our now infrequent calls Debbie reminded me she would be home Wednesday night before Thanksgiving and she didn't have to leave until Sunday afternoon. She said she hoped she would be able to spend most of that time with me. For the first time since she left I got excited about seeing her again.
We made plans for us to get together at her house after Thanksgiving dinner. Seeing her again was like instant alcohol rush. I felt totally tongue tied but I couldn't take my eyes off of her. Her dad and mom were glad to see me and her two sisters gave me a warm welcome. Her dad and I had made an instant connection earlier when it turned out the K-13 my uncle married was a third cousin of his. And I don't think either of us was too happy about Debbie not visiting home since she left for school.
I spent a couple of hours over there having desert and watching football. I finally suggested that Debbie and I go out to a movie. Debbie jumped at the chance and we quickly left ignoring her mom and dad's obvious disappointment.
We drove straight to my apartment. As soon as we got in the door we started ripping each others clothes off. Naked we fell into bed and got reacquainted with enthusiasm. I don't how it happened but it was like she never left. We fit right back together like an old glove. We talked and made love over and over again. I ignored my disappointment over our extended separation and Debbie never mentioned it.
This time when it came time for Debbie to leave we knew it was only a few weeks until the Christmas break. This time I kissed Debbie goodbye feeling better about the separation and our relationship.
Three weeks later it was a repeat of Thanksgiving. It was like we had never been apart. I had two weeks off as part of the auto plant holiday shutdown so we had lots of time to spend together. We went to Christmas parties and holiday shopped. She spent time with my family and I spent time with hers. I helped her dad wire the basement recreation room he was finishing and I forever became his friend.
For Christmas I got her the matching amethyst earrings and pendant that went with her ring. From her I got two very nice cable knit sweaters I thought looked sharp on me. Again we spent more and more time at my apartment. A couple of times she spent the night. I didn't know what she was telling her parents and I didn't ask. I knew even then I would be happy spending the rest of my life with her like this.
The day before she had to return to school we talked again about being separated, and the possibility of getting together every month. Again she was evasive and wouldn't commit to anything. The other thing that made me unhappy was several times I told her I thought I was in love with her and every time she would smile, give me a hug or kiss but wouldn't reciprocate. I brought that up our last day together.
Holding her in my arms I said, "Debbie, I know talking about my feelings makes you uncomfortable. I love you and I want to have a future with you. But you make me feel like you don't feel the same way."
With tears in her eyes, she looked at me. "Please, Dave I love being with you and doing things with you. Can't we just be happy being together when we can?"
"I am happy when we're together, Debbie. I just want to see you more. I want you to know there isn't anyone else for me. I hope you feel the same way."
For the first time Debbie's eyes slid away and she wouldn't look at me. "Dave, we are so far away from each other for such a long time. I don't expect you to sit at home and not have a life."
"Debbie, I'm not interested in seeing anyone else. No one can compare to what we have. I want ... I hope you feel the same."
Debbie hugged and kissed me and we forgot about our conversation for awhile. Later when I thought back on it I realized she never answered me. I knew that she was not as committed to our relationship as I was. Whenever I thought about that I would get sad and depressed.
So I stayed as busy as I could. Took all the overtime offered, worked a couple of outside jobs every week, went to the required college classes and spent a couple of hours at the Y several mornings a week.
A few weeks after the holiday break one of the other electricians was telling everyone about a house he was selling. His father had passed away the year before and it was part of the estate. It was rundown but in a nice neighborhood and a good school district. His family just wanted out from under it and they were willing to let it go cheap. They would even hold a land contract for five years with a balloon at the end just to get rid of it.
I decided to take a look at it as the payments would only be a little more than the rent I was paying. It was a large bi-level house, nearly two thousand square feet. It had four bedrooms, two baths and sat on a large corner lot. The only thing I didn't like about it was that the large garage was not attached to the house but sat back of it about fifty feet.
The house needed a lot of work. The parents had lived in the house for forty years and had hardly updated anything in it. But I knew if I could get everything done it needed before the five years of the contract were up it would be worth three to four times what I paid for it. And getting a mortgage on it would not be a problem.
I made an offer and after a little haggling we made a deal. Within a couple a weeks I moved out of the apartment and into my new home. I didn't mention it to Debbie until after the fact because I wanted to surprise her. But I was the one surprised when she didn't seem to care one way or the other.
I kept trying to convince Debbie to come down. Finally I said if she couldn't make it down I would come up there. When I said that she said that maybe we could meet half way. So we set a date a couple of weeks out and I arranged to take a couple of days off. As the date got closer the weather in the U.P. got worse and it seemed like there was one blizzard after another.
A couple of days before we were supposed to meet she called and said that her car was giving her trouble and with the weather the way it was she wanted to postpone the trip. Terribly disappointed I agreed and when we hung up I was in a foul mood. It looked like our next opportunity to get together again was going to be spring break.
Meanwhile in my spare time I worked on the house. I asked one of the carpenters at work who was also a builder on the side if he could help me develop a design on how I wanted the house to look when completed. The finished product was quite ambitious but in the back of my mind was the thought I wanted something that Debbie would want to live in someday.
I prioritized the projects on the design. I wanted to finish the kitchen first, then the bathrooms and then the other rooms. When the weather improved I would start on the outside projects.
The cost of remodeling the house was going to be significant in terms of materials. But the cost of labor was going to be minimal. Most of the tradesmen at the plant traded work amongst themselves. So that's what I did. I did electrical work and general labor for those guys who needed it and in turn the carpenters, glaziers, painters or heating & cooling guys would do work for me.
It was a couple of weeks before spring break when I got a call from Debbie's dad, Carl. I had stayed in touch with him and Debbie's mother, Angela. I had even stopped in and visited with them a couple of times since Christmas. Both Carl and Angela knew how I felt about Debbie. And they sympathized with my frustration as it mirrored theirs of trying to maintain a long distance relationship with her.
When I responded to Carl on the phone he said, "How do you feel about Debbie's spring break plans?"
Confused I said, "What do you mean?"
"You don't know?"
"I haven't spoken to her in a week but I assume she is coming home." I said.
"She called last night. She plans on going to Corpus Christi with a couple of girlfriends." He said obviously disappointed.
"I asked her what you said when she told you but she didn't answer me. I couldn't believe she hasn't talked to you about it."
"No ... no she never said a word."
"I don't know what's got into that girl, I really don't. I asked her if she was going to stop here on the way to Texas she said no. Her girlfriend, Miranda lives in Milwaukee and they are getting a ride there to pick up a car. So they are going to drive down through Wisconsin and continue on south. They plan on coming back the same way."
As the implications of what he was saying sunk in I got angry at Debbie for the first time. Did she care so little that she wouldn't even talk to me about this first? She knew how much I was looking forward to being with her over break. I had told her how eager I was for her to see the house. I had hoped to get her opinion about decorating it. And I had put in for a couple of days off so we could have a four day weekend together while she was home.
Bitterly I said, "I guess she's made her decision, Carl. Apparently our relationship is not important enough to her to talk to me first."
"I'm sorry, Dave. You don't deserve to be treated this way either." He said.
We talked for a few more minutes then hung up. As I sat there in the half finished kitchen of what I hoped would one day be our home, I came to the realization that no matter how much you wished or hoped for something, that wasn't enough to make it happen. I knew now our relationship was mostly one sided. My dreams weren't her dreams. There wasn't anything I could do to make her love me like I loved her.
I shook my head and dried my eyes. I felt like a close relative had died unexpectedly. When it happens you feel such a tremendous loss. You never stop loving them but you knew you had to accept it and move on with your life.
The next day when I returned home from my college class there was a message on the answering machine from Debbie. "Dave, sorry I missed you. Can you call me as soon as you get this? I really want to talk to you. Thanks, baby!"
Her voice sounded happy and upbeat. I suspected she wanted to blow smoke up my ass about not coming home for spring break. I shook my head, deleted the message and left for work.
The next day I was out on a side job almost until it was time to report for my shift. As I came in through the kitchen I noticed another message on the recorder. Again it was from Debbie. Not quite so upbeat this time.
"Dave, honey? Please call me. I spoke to dad last night and he said he told you about my change in plans for spring break. Please call me, okay? I can explain. I'll be in the dorm all afternoon."
I could detect a little bit of concern in her voice this time. Her dad probably chewed her out for not talking to me first. Again I deleted the message and went about my business.