"She just stormed out of the house. I don't know where she went, and frankly Jerry, I don't care," Jerry's former wife complained on the phone. His 15-year-old daughter Jewel had become more and more of a headache for Beth-Ann during the past year. And although it was part of the divorce agreement that he not be allowed to visit or even meet with his daughter, his former wife had recently begun calling him and appraising him of the youngster's apparent totally out of control attitude toward her mother and stepfather.
Beth-Ann continued, "She said that she was going to live with you and I finally just screamed at her to do whatever she wanted, I can't take it anymore."
It was a Wednesday night and Jewel had run away on Monday. Jerry wondered if his ex realized the trouble she could get in by not notifying the authorities that the girl was missing for the last two days.
"I haven't heard from her, Beth. And I don't think she'll come up here," he said, referring to his small house a few hundred miles away from his ex, in the adjoining State. "Sometimes when I talked with her on the phone, she'd mention wanting to come live with me, but I always told her the court would never let it happen, as much as I would have liked it."
"Yeah, I bet you would have," Beth-Ann challenged, always the righteous one. "Well you can have her now. I'm through! She actually swung a knife at Clete!"
She went into more detail of her version of the events, and then they were saying goodbye, with the obligatory promise that whichever one heard from their daughter, they would contact the other. After he hung up, Jerry sat back down in the living room with his drink. He turned off the TV and thought back to what had been. He was feeling a simmering rage for his ex wife for fucking up everyone's life; his, hers, and their daughter's. Hell, probably Clete's too -- that scum bag!
They had been married for 12 years and only the first three were really happyish. After that the marriage slowly deteriorated, what with Beth's paranoia and righteousness. Whenever he would work late or be called in on an emergency, she always gave him hell because of her suspicions, which were unfounded. Then, as Jewel grew, his daughter began to show her extreme joy and love for him, which seemed to thoroughly anger Beth-Ann, who soon started to turn on her daughter, turning mean, but always when there was some minor thing that their daughter was doing wrong, so that Jerry couldn't really interfere.
When his daughter was 10, her friendliness toward her father was such that she would snuggle against him, sit on his lap and forever be around him, much to the chagrin of Beth-Ann.
The divorce came about because of a couple of things that Beth saw occur between Jerry and their daughter, but the truth was that Jerry had been totally innocent of his wife's suspicions. However, to protect his daughter, he didn't bring up the fact that what had happened both times were Jewel's doing.
First there was the kiss. Jewel had just turned 11 by then. Jerry was alone in the living room when Jewel rushed in to thank him for something so silly, he didn't even remember what it was anymore. She rushed into his arms. Smiling, he threw his arms around her and she lifted her face to kiss him. He bent to give her a peck and to his utmost surprise, she threw her arms around his neck, and then parted her lips just before their mouths met. Jerry was so stunned he simply stood, and his daughter actually thrust her tongue into his mouth. Then, before he could push her away, she began moaning into his mouth. It was at that moment that Beth-Ann happened upon the joined-by-the-mouth-father-and-daughter.
That wasn't the first of the raucous verbal fights between Jerry and Beth-Ann, but it was the most heated of their marriage, she accusing him being a child molester and threatening to turn him over to the cops; he simply maintaining that the kiss was simply a peck that she was blowing out of proportion. He knew that if he even hinted as to how his daughter had actually thrown herself and her kiss into him, that Beth-Ann would be a terror on their little girl.
The next incident happened about three months later. It was on one of those nights where the three of them were in the living room watching TV with Beth-Ann sitting alone on the easy chair, while Jewel snuggled up against Jerry on the couch. It was at the end of a long day in the sun at the pool for all three of them and both he and his wife were struggling to stay awake.
He was actually nodding off when he suddenly realized that his hand was inside his little girl's blouse, and upon her budding little titty. Thinking about it later, he knew that his daughter had apparently picked up his hand and drew it inside her blouse and placed it on her naked breast. Jewel's moan caused Beth-Ann to reopen her nodding eyes and quickly turn her head. Her shouts could have awoken the neighborhood as all she saw was her husband's hand inside their little girl's shirt and she assumed the worst.
Again Jerry refused to let on about the real truth, even after this incident led to the final break-up of the marriage. When Beth-Ann insisted that he not be allowed to be around his daughter, he still kept his silence as to what actually happened. She threatened that if he didn't agree, she'd tell the court what had happened, which of course would have been a police matter.
Jerry rationalized that in a best case scenario, where the truth was found out (though not from him) the court would probably decide that it would be best that Jewel not be around him, because of her apparent attraction for him.
During the next four years, he kept in touch by phone and emails with his daughter. She continued to update him about how rotten her mom was to her, and after Beth-Ann had met and then married Clete, Jewel's complaints became louder. Although she never even hinted to Jerry that Clete touched her, he nevertheless often wondered, only because the youngster suddenly began to let certain words or phrases slip out when they were talking; words and phrases a daughter shouldn't use when talking to her father, sounding 'more mature' than his little girl.
About a year earlier, he received his first call from Beth since the divorce. That was the first time that Jewel had really gotten in any trouble, being found in the stairwell of the school with a boy, who had his pants down around his ankles when the teacher happened upon the youngsters.
Then came another call that Jewel was at a house party where police were called to investigate. It was pretty apparent that booze was involved, maybe even pills or drugs. Fortunately, the party was at the house of a Police Lieutenant's daughter and the kids were simply brought home and no charges were filed.
During a complaining phone call about a month after that, Beth-Ann informed him that she heard one of the neighborhood girls arguing outside the house with Jewel and accusing their daughter of stealing her boyfriend. What shocked Beth was when the girl shouted in anger that Jewel was the school BJ Queen.
There were other calls and it was now apparent that it was so unbearable for both Jewel and Beth to be around each other that it was probably impossible for them to be living under the same roof together.
The following two nights after this latest call, Jerry called his ex to see if she'd heard from their daughter. She hadn't and Jerry again suggested that the police should be called. Beth declined. Each told the other that if they heard anything, they'd be in contact.
It was now Friday night. The 15-year-old runaway was on the last leg of her trip to her dad's house, as she was dropped off at the edge of town. She had stayed in a friend's basement on Monday and Tuesday nights, and then began the long hitchhiking trek on Wednesday. She had no way of knowing how her father would react. She knew the rules of the divorce was the reason that he hadn't been able to see her, but what she didn't know was that her mom was so fed up with her antics, that she had already agreed that if Jewel showed up at her father's house and wanted to stay, then that was what would happen.
Finally, Jewel stood before the front door, her heart quickening when she saw a light on inside. It was nearly nine at night, and the moon gave off only a faint glow. Nervously, she moved to ring the doorbell. Two days of hitch-hiking and walking would now come to an end.
The doorbell gave a high-pitched shrill shriek and she could see someone moving around inside. Then the porch light turned on and she felt shaky. The door opened, and her eyes fell upon the familiar body of her father for the first time in four years.
"Oh my God, -- Jewel?" he gasped.
She started crying and he lunged forward to hug her in a giant embrace. A huge bear hug enfolded her small, tired body. She felt his arms around her, mammoth and warm, and she knew everything was going to be alright.
"DA-AA-DDDDDD-DEEEEE!!!" she screamed in delight.
He laughed. "Feels good?"
"Ohhh God, yes Daddy! Yes!"
Jewel was home!
That night was simply a bunch of hugs, kisses and tears. Then he showed her the extra room where she would be staying, strangely enough a room he had purposely set up with her in mind when he bought this house. He never expected to see her before she was 18, but of course he had always held out hope. He'd had a friend who stayed in the room a few times but other than that, the room was never used.
.... There is more of this story ...