"Hey Melanie, you must have your phone turned off. This is just a message to say I will not be getting home for your friend's retirement party. I expect to be home by noon tomorrow, not this afternoon as planned. Have fun. Love you. Brad.
Melanie and I was a young couple in our late twenties. She was a grade school teacher and I worked in an office as an accountant. Melanie often said she wasn't one to take life seriously. She was tall, and extremely attractive. Her breasts were just right for her, riding high and firm. She didn't strut, but she came off as just a little arrogant.
Me? Well I was tall too, but I was somewhat gangly. I could move fast and that was what prompted me to have a hobby. That was for weekends though. I was working toward being a Certified Public Accountant. It was going to take awhile for me to see the name Bradley Higgins on the certificate I wanted on the wall of my office, but I plugged away diligently.
Several times a year I went to reenactments of western shoot-outs. My fellow actors and I dressed as gunfighters or as characters from different television series. Some of us acted out short skits and scenes from television. I mostly entered the fast draw contests. I had recently purchased a new outfit. This was a costume of the Lone Ranger and Melanie hadn't seen it yet.
Melanie thought all of this was foolish and childish. I enjoyed it and she laughed at it and me most of the time. If the dates were where she could go with me she did sometimes, and then found she thoroughly enjoyed herself. She did not mind my going at all, although she had one request. "I don't want any of our friends to know about this and that is for sure, you promise?" I did promise.
It wasn't long after I called telling her when I was coming home, the weather turned good and I decided to head for there instead of sleeping in the motel. It was two a.m. when I pulled my car into the garage and closed the door. The house was dark except for the nightlights on in every room. I assumed of course, that my wife was sleeping upstairs.
I didn't turn any lights on, just going through the living room and setting my equipment in the hall. I still had on my western hat and gear. My twin holsters and guns that I carried in a satchel I set down on the floor by my suitcase. My mask was in my pocket and I headed for the bathroom. Relieved, I was just shaking it when I heard a vehicle pull up in front of the garage. It sounded like Rich Rockford's '68 Firebird. I heard a car door slam and in a few minutes, the front door opened and slammed back against the wall.
Melanie was being supported and half carried in by Rich Rockford. Her golden hair was in disarray and her head didn't appear to be attached to her neck, it flopped around so much. Rich appeared to be almost as drunk as she was. This pissed me off. Why in hell were they driving around at this time of night and as drunk as they appeared to be? Melanie should know better. She knew my thoughts on being in a car with someone who had been drinking.
Understand, I didn't care too much for Rich. I considered him an arrogant bastard who was not above belittling his neighbors. It was tough that he was a schoolteacher in the same system as Melanie. I had to put up with him to keep peace with my wife and I did not like it or him. On occasion, he wasn't above playing a practical joke and these were meant to hurt and were hardly ever comical.
For instance, a photograph of me naked had surfaced and it had been circulated among our crowd. It had been doctored from me in a swimsuit to show me with it removed and I with the tiniest of sexual equipment. Melanie had laughed it off saying she knew better, but I had taken a lot of razzing and it all hurt. "Forget about it, it is just a joke," was her comment.
Melanie and I had had a heated exchange over the incident. I even wondered where the original photo had come from and accused her of providing the original. This of course led me to refusing to have intercourse with her for a time. I declared a man with such a small tool as mine could not or would not satisfy her and I wouldn't try. Eventually the hurt died down and we resumed normal relations, but it took several weeks.
Melanie wasn't aware, but Cindy, Rich's wife had come and quietly apologized to me. "I know Rich did this and I know someday he will run up against a person who will retaliate. When it happens, I'll never say a word except, I told you so."
All of this flashed through my mind as Rich and Melanie staggered into the living room. I also knew Melanie could only be a few minutes from passing out. She headed for the couch and flopped down on it. Her legs were splayed and Rich was looking directly at her crotch. He removed his suit jacket before sitting in the chair across from her. He was so drunk it could only be a short time before he would pass out himself.
Suddenly he rose from the chair, staggered across to Melanie and fondled her breasts, running his thumbs over her nipples. They of course became erect. He just had to see them. He pulled her dress off her shoulders, and unclasped the front hook bra.
He stared at them displayed in all their glory. Melanie's breasts were perfect for her and he must have admired them the same way every man did when they encountered her. Now they were right where he could touch them
He leaned down and took one nipple into his mouth. She batted at him, mumbling, "Go away!" I was ready to launch myself at him. He backed off and stood looking down at her.
Next, he turned and lifted her dress up. I knew she must have on the black lace panties that went with the dress. Was he going to rape her? Slowly he backed across the room and sank into the chair again, but didn't take his eyes from either her breasts or her panties.
He was about to make a decision, yes or no. I could imagine what he was thinking. Here was a beautiful woman who was passed out and fully in his control. He had a very pregnant wife at home who was about to, or had denied him sex recently as she was about at term.
It was time I stopped this. I backed quietly down the hall, put on the Lone Ranger's mask, dug my holsters and pistols out of the satchel and put on my Stetson. I put blanks in one pistol and returned to where I could observe what Rich would do next.
He was almost asleep and his head would loll to one side, but then he would open his eyes and stare. He made a decision. He pushed himself out of the chair and staggered over to Melanie. He reached for my wife's panties and started to pull them down.
"Uh, uh," I uttered. This stopped him. He turned to me, seeing a tall, slim, six-foot-one masked man with two gleaming pistols pointing right at him from about thirteen feet away. There was no light behind me and I was standing just back of entering the room. "Me, Kemo Sabe."
"Oh God, don't shoot!" I motioned him back to the chair he had been sitting in. He stumbled and went down. I waved the pistol again and he scrabbled like a spider until he reached the chair.
Before he could sit, I ordered in the worst western drawl ever, "Boots off. No man should die with his boots on. Wranglers or long johns go too. Off." This he hesitated in doing. I fired the pistol. I thought he might crap his pants.
He hustled some now. I glanced at Melanie. She had hardly stirred as I figured. She had been around gunfire at the re-enactments and contests and was used to hearing it. When my eyes returned to Rich, he had everything below his waist off and he was kicking his pants from his bare feet. I could see how gray his face was and he was now shivering with fear.
I slowly raised the pistol without the shells and pointed at his head. I pulled the trigger. Only a click. "God damned ammo. No good at all." I turned as if to get some shells out of my belt. I gave him a minute and he took the bait. The door banged open. I hurried across the room to see Rich fall in the driveway reaching for his car. He was going to have some serious scratches and abrasions.
He backed that Firebird out and took off wide open for home at the end of our street. 400 hundred horses in that Pontiac were galloping for all they were worth. He had a straight shot for home so I wasn't worried. Now to decide about my wife.
Melanie knew I had serious issues with Rich and yet she tended still to be friendly with him. Not only that, she had put herself at risk by riding with him in his car. Who knows, Rich might even have raped her tonight if I hadn't been here. There was also that niggling doubt that she might say he would not rape anyone, which would add another issue to hound me by her taking his side in all of this. She was believing in him more than in me.
I looked down at my passed out wife. I leaned down and planted a hickey on her left breast. I got a mumbled, "No Rich." My name is Brad and this was my wife. I about went ballistic. I picked up one leg and planted a hickey high up on the inside of her thigh. It was not enough. I went to the refrigerator and got an egg, separating it and sending the yolk down the garbage disposal. The remainder I planted in strategic places.
Now to clean up and get out of here. I would be home as I said I would be later today. I picked up the wad from the blank shell that had flown across the room. I took Rich's coat where he had hung it over the chair. His wallet was in it. I bundled up his shoes, pants and underwear and placed everything in a garbage bag.
All of my gear and equipment and his bag went with me out and into my car. I did get a clean set of jeans and a clean shirt from my bureau drawer. I checked everything and locked the house up.
When I backed out of my garage, I could see flashing police and rescue lights at the end of the street near where Rich lived. Oh well, I knew he was too drunk to drive. I hope he didn't kill anyone--or himself. I'm sure I would hear about it this afternoon when I got home. The motel I chose was kind of a dump, but I slept well.
I arrived home at the time I said I would. Melanie had not started her summer job yet, so she was at home. I had one more day before I went back to work. "Hi honey, did you have fun at your friend's retirement party? You said it was for the teacher who had mentored you when you first started. I'll bet you will miss her."
"Hi Brad. Not much fun and haven't had any today. I was bored at the party and I am kind of hung over. I guess I drank more than I usually do. I hope you aren't planning on sex tonight."
"No, of course not if you aren't feeling well. Any other news? I've been gone four days and I had a great time. I came in second in the fast draw contest. I'm going to keep practicing and maybe next time I can get first prize. I'll toss my dirty clothes in the hamper. I'll even do the washing if you're not feeling well."
"I did it already. I had some things that need washing. You could make dinner tonight. Nothing heavy though. Oh, Rich Rockford was in an accident and is in the hospital with a broken arm. He hit that huge cement gargoyle on the edge of his driveway. He was drunk. He smashed up his favorite car pretty bad. He crumpled the right front fender and did something underneath. One of the neighbors went down while the police were talking to him. He said Rich was going way too fast when he turned into his driveway.
"That isn't all. He didn't have any pants on and they are saying Cindy is pissed and embarrassed about it all. What made him take off his clothes, I wonder. I feel sorry for her. She is within a couple of weeks of having her first baby. The neighbor says Rich was talking crazy and said it was all the Lone Ranger's fault. Too drunk to make sense and kind of weird anyway, especially when he won't say why or where this happened. I always thought Rich had his head on straight."
"I know you did."
"What do you mean by that?"
"Nothing, really. You just took his side when he pulled that prank of the picture of me with the tiny dick."
"I told you to get over it. Everyone else has."
"I can't. I felt he took my manhood from me."
"I never felt that way. I tell you so often enough."
"Let's don't fight Melanie, I know you aren't feeling well. I hope you feel better soon. So Rich smashed his favorite toy up did he? Too bad."
"You don't sound sorry." I shrugged and turned away so she couldn't see me grinning.
Whether Melanie thought she had sex last night I wouldn't know. The subject didn't come up, and she didn't get close to me for a few days. She kept away from mentioning Rich Rockford and his troubles never came up again. As far as anyone could tell, Melanie and Rich were never together that night.
He was charged with DUI, fined and lost his license for thirty days. He also had to replace all of the items in his wallet. I was going to return it anonymously, but he had two photos of me in it. There was the original snapshot of me in the bathing trunks and the one that had been altered and then circulated.
Rich was barely able to retain his job and had to fight to convince the school board to renew his school contract for the year coming up. He was called before the school commissioners and they decided that the last school year was completed, so he theoretically was not under contract at the time.
In addition, the accident was on his own property, the damage done by him was his alone, and he was the only one to suffer for it. Besides, they didn't want a story about a bunch of teachers drinking to excess at a party.
Cindy's baby came along right on time. Melanie and I went into the hospital to see her as good neighbors would. Two weeks later, we walked down with a hot dish. Rich was home, but kept out of our way.
On the way back up the street, Melanie asked, "Do you think Rich is crazy? Cindy is beginning to wonder. He tells her that he did drive me home that night I was so drunk. He said he sat down and then there was an image standing in the hallway and it fired a gun at him after making him remove all of his clothes.
"Brad, I honestly don't even remember coming home. What do you think happened to make Rich tell tales such as this?"
"Maybe Rich was doing something he wasn't supposed to be doing and dreamed this because he feels so guilty."
"You don't really believe that do you? What would he be guilty of doing?"
"I couldn't imagine. You and him were the only two people I know who were there in the house." There was total silence from my wife the rest of the way home. A week later, she decided it was confession time.
"Brad, may I talk to you tonight after dinner? I think I have something to say. You aren't going to like it and I think you are going to hate Rich more than ever."
"Oh, I don't think I'm going to be very mad at you, but I certainly would like to hear what you have to say. I love you, you know. I always have and I always will. I get upset with you sometimes, but I think our love is pretty strong."
"I hope so, but I don't see how you could forgive some of the things I've done."
"Hold that thought, because I'm going to prove you wrong." I received two kisses as I left for work. Melanie was very nervous when I got home. She had my favorite dinner prepared. She poured a glass of wine for me to drink as she was loading the dishwasher.
She brought herself in a large glass of wine and sat down on the far end of the couch from me. "Brad, that night I got so drunk at the party. Rich did drive me. I lied about not knowing how I got home. I must have been unfaithful when we got here. I just know that if I had been sober or just a little drunk it wouldn't have happened. I feel so bad about it and I'm asking you to forgive me. It has bothered me for the last month and I can't live with myself any longer without telling you."
"I forgive you for what you feel was being unfaithful. If you find out you weren't unfaithful how are you going to feel then?"
"I wish you could tell me I wasn't. I would feel so relieved. You don't know the hell I have been through."
"Okay, I'll tell you and relieve your mind. You were not unfaithful. I set you up and I'll explain how and why. The why, remember last year when those pictures of me and my so-called tiny dick circulated? I was so hurt because you thought it funny. I thought for a long time you supplied the original to Rich. That part I still don't know about, but I do know in two ways that he was responsible."
Melanie broke in, "Brad, I would never do that to you. I don't know where he got the photo. Honest!"
"You didn't deny it strongly enough, though. Cindy told me that Rich did it and if she knew of someone who could play a prank on Rich to compensate for my embarrassment, she wouldn't be mad at that person at all. I hope she still feels that way. Also, I know he did it because I have the original of me and the one he himself or someone else altered."
"How could you have the original? I know there were some with the changed picture around because I saw two or three. I laughed at the people who showed them to me because I know what your equipment is and it is at least several times bigger than the picture."
"It still hurt terribly. That is why I'm going to tell you I know you were not unfaithful. Let me ask you a few questions first. Did you ever flirt with Rich enough to tease him into thinking he might get somewhere with you?"
"Maybe, but I never meant it to be taken seriously or intended to. I didn't think he did either."
"You must remember men and women see many things in a different way. Case in point, I was hurt about the picture and you couldn't see it as nothing but a joke."
"I'm so sorry Brad. I do see your point--now. But where did you get the original?"
"It was in his wallet. The Lone Ranger got it for me."
"You mean Rich's rambling on about the Lone Ranger is true."
I couldn't keep the grin off my face. "Me, Kemo Sabe. Hi Ho Silver Away." I hesitated now before continuing in the face of Melanie's disbelief. "You're going to be awful mad at me when you hear what really happened that night."
"No I'm not. I have a feeling you got back at Rich good. Real good."
"Yes, but remember, at the time I had a lot of resentment against you too. I did things to you I'm not at all proud of."
"You forgave me, so I promise I am going to forgive you, no matter what."
"I hope so. Here goes anyway. Melanie, I got home just minutes before you did that night. When you and Rich came in I was immediately pissed at both of you. You for getting drunk and he for driving you home in the condition where he was obviously intoxicated. Why on earth did you get in his car?"
"I don't remember. Honest. I promise I won't ever drink so much again."
"Okay. Anyway, you made it as far as the couch and flopped down on it. Your legs were splayed indecently. Rich made it back to the chair and could look up your dress and see your pretty lace panties." I paused and looked at Melanie. Her face was bright red with embarrassment for herself. "He was almost too drunk to stand, but finally he came over and fondled your breasts.
"Next, he pulled the top of your dress down and unclasped your bra. He leaned down and sucked on one of your nipples. I could have killed him right then, but he backed off and looked at your panties. He went back and sat down, still staring directly up your dress."
"He put a hickey on one of my breasts didn't he? I was so ashamed when I saw it and I knew it couldn't have come from you. You never mark me. That and other things made me sure I had been unfaithful."
"Did he put a hickey on you? We will get to that in a minute. Enter the Lone Ranger watching all of this. He put on his mask, his Stetson and buckled on his guns. When Rich reached to pull down your panties, he spoke just enough to give Rich pause and to look toward the hall where the Lone Ranger was partially visible. The ranger spoke again. 'Me, Kemo Sabe, ' letting Rich know he was in trouble--real trouble.
"He was told to remove his shoes, pants and underwear because it wasn't right to have to die with his clothes on. Rich hesitated and the Ranger fired one gun one time. You never stirred because you were used to hearing gunfire at the shows. When the Ranger tried to fire off the shot that Rich knew was going to kill him and it did not go off, he saw a chance to run and he did. Exit, Rich."
Melanie had pictured all of this as I spoke and I could see she saw humor in it. Then she realized that this wasn't the end of the story, she sobered. "What about me? You are the Lone Ranger, so it was you all along that had sex with me that night. I'm so glad, but you could have told me weeks ago,"
"I didn't do you, dear. Nobody did. Remember I was pissed at you. First, I put the hickey on your breast. When I did this, you mumbled, 'No, Rich, ' which made me see red because my name happens to be Brad. That is when I lost it and put another hickey up high on your thigh."
Melanie broke in, "I didn't find that one for two days. God, I was so embarrassed. I knew if you saw it you would kill me." It was getting to her now just what I had done. "It was you all along. I could hate you because I worked so hard to keep both hickeys hidden from you."
"I remember. You wouldn't let me anywhere near you. I got a chuckle or two from your antics until I was beginning to feel a little sorry. I promised myself I wouldn't tell you how you got the hickeys until you confessed you thought you had sex."
Melanie couldn't believe I had been so mean. She thought back over everything I had said. I could see into her mind the minute she felt I had just cause. "I suppose there is some explanation for the stuff I found on me and in my panties. I can't believe you could be so nasty that it came from you?"
"No dear, I may get mad at you, but I respect you more than to do that to you. One thing I did, and I suspect this will be the hardest for you to forgive me of doing is how could you know but what you had had sex? I have let you believe it all of this time. I'm so sorry. Please forgive me."
"Well get it over with. I guess I'm happy to find out it was all a hoax."
"It was just egg white. Just one. Makes a big mess doesn't it?"
I was waiting for my wife to blow her stack. I was surprised at the response I received. "You said men and women think differently about the same thing. Maybe because women have to clean up after men more than men do, is another case in point. I don't see it as messy at all. In all ways, what you used and what you deposit on or in us has to do with eggs. Kind of funny in a way. Therefore, I forgive you. You better not be pulling anything more like this again. That goes along with me staying nearly sober from now on."
Melanie came over to lay her head down on my lap. Looking up at me she asked, "Do you really have a Lone Ranger suit?"
"Yup. Just as soon as it gets dark, I will recreate what Rich saw. Next thing is what are we going to do about Rich? Cindy will be okay when she learns the truth, but I think we had better skip letting her know he touched you. We can lay it to you both being inebriated and he might not remember much of what he did that night."
"You think she needs to know any of it? How about you? You seem pretty calm."
"I worried almost as much about you finding out what I did to you as you did in thinking you had been unfaithful to me. We've forgiven each other. I guess we had better talk to Cindy first. I'll explain everything including my feelings for both you and Rich about being drunk that night."
"Let's not worry about it tonight. I want to lay here and have you hold me. I'm so glad I have found out I wasn't unfaithful."
"I'm so glad you aren't mad at me for making you think you were."
"What about Rich fondling my breasts? It made you mad."
"I know, but you told him no and you drunk or sober let me know they are mine."
"You're sweet. Would you like to see and feel them?"
"Yes." One thing led to another and before we knew it, we were making love. A while later Melanie lay stretched out almost asleep. I excused myself for the bathroom. I paused to look at her before heading down the hall. I sure loved that woman. I slipped into the bedroom where I had hidden my Lone Ranger gear. Hurriedly I donned it. It was dark enough.
I paused where I had stood that night when it was Rich whose attention I was intent on getting. Very gruffly, I said, "Me, Kemo Sabe." I had both guns drawn. Melanie screamed and fell off the couch. She rose up to her knees trying to climb back on. "You'all better be getting up and head for that chair. Now!"
Just as she was almost to her feet, I fired a pistol. She ran and when she faced me, there was almost the same scared look as I had seen on Rich's face. It was enough. I came out where she could fully see me, asking, "Are you okay?"
"I am now. I was sleeping or almost. If I was drunk and you did that to me I would be having nightmares, and I would think you were going to kill me. Boy, I think of the two pranks that have happened, you are way ahead of Rich. Hey, at the next re-enactment, can I be your Tonto and run around saying, Me, Kemo Sabe?"
"You can do anything you want to. Tomorrow is Saturday. I think I should talk to Cindy. You know, I thought Rich was a total asshole, but we haven't had any cops here investigating about him being naked. He couldn't have told anyone where all of this happened. He has taken a lot of heat about everything and yet your reputation is just as clean as can be.
"He is either afraid of Cindy finding out he was here or he is thinking of keeping you out of it. Either way, I applaud his discretion."
"I never thought I would hear you say something in support of Rich."
"I never thought I would either, but I have to be fair. Especially where you are concerned."
"Let's go to bed. All this talk of trouble and forgiveness makes me tired."
"Cindy, can we meet sometime today without Rich being present?"
"Come on down and I'll put the coffee on. Rich is playing golf all morning. What's this about?"
"I have some things of Rich's. I don't know whether to return them or keep my mouth shut. I guess I'll lay it all out before you and let you decide."
"This I have to hear. Coffee will take ten minutes. I'll expect you. Will you be wearing your Ranger badge?" This question startled me.
"Not today." I surmised Rich had done some major confessing to his wife. Maybe this was going to be easier than I thought.
"Coffee is poured. First, I have to tell you Rich has told me everything that he remembers about that night. It took him two days before he concluded that you must have been the Lone Ranger. To be honest, you almost scared him to death. He is still leery of you. Some of it is lingering guilt over him taking Melanie's bra off. Is that all he did?"
"I was there. Yeah, that was it. Truthfully, I was madder at the two of them being in a car and being so drunk. She for getting in with him and of course, he for driving the car."
"Well he got payback for that. He is still crying over the damage to his Firebird?"
"Does he blame me for that?"
"No, and I won't let him either."
"He must be pretty upset about the embarrassment of being naked."
"He is, but I tell him to suck it up. It is just payback for what he did to you. How come you want to talk to us at this time?"
"I had some major issues with Melanie. She did some confessing last night and I thought maybe we all could get beyond this, so I called you."
"Brad, be honest now. Did Rich do more with Melanie than what he told me he did?"
"Absolutely not. I was there the whole time. I landed on her and set her up to believe she had been unfaithful that night. She was so drunk she didn't even remember coming home so that part was easy. If you and Rich would come for dinner tonight, you can ask her what I did to her. She forgave me and that is why I'm here. I'd like to apologize to Rich. I'll do that tonight if you would come."
"We'll be there. Count on it. What about the other thing that started all of this?"
"Rich has earned my forgiveness on that. You know if he had told anyone, including the police, where he had left or lost his pants that night, Melanie would have been tarred with scandal. I respect him for doing this for her. He didn't mention her and that is why I want to get back on track as just being good neighbors."
"You're a big man, Brad. I still have hopes for Rich, and with you noting his keeping Melanie out of the spotlight, I think he is going to make it. It is all something positive without any more pranks that will do it. What time for dinner?"
"We'll be there."
Melanie asked, "How did it go?"
"They'll be here about six. I had a good talk with Cindy. Rich confessed all that he could remember. He remembers unhooking your bra, but didn't say anything about touching you. I concurred that he hadn't."
"But you said he did kiss one of my nipples."
"I'm cutting him some slack. He kept your name out of this whole affair and that means a lot to me. It should to you too."
"Maybe you lied when you said he touched me."
I grinned, "Go with that. There is only Rich and the Lone Ranger that know for sure and Rich was drunk. What are you serving for dinner?"
"I have a roast ready to go in the oven. That should do it."