[This is a sequel to 'A Different Honeymoon'. This new story will make more sense if you read that story first.]
Was it really ten months since we came back from our honeymoon, I asked myself? Certainly it had been a wonderful ten months, even if it had been a bit of a struggle financially. Shirley was working hard to complete her final year at university and within two weeks she should be finished and able to get a full time job, which would ease our financial difficulties.
In two weeks she would be turning 21, while it had been nearly three months since I turned 22.
My job didn't pay a lot, even though I had a good degree, but there was a good future if I could hang in there long enough. There wasn't much demand for my computer project management skills obtained through my degree. In fact, I also worried about Shirley being able to get a job here in Newcastle in her slightly different computer discipline when she finished her degree
It was a little tough, with us both living on one not very big wage, but we were both so in love. We lived very frugally; didn't buy the newspaper, had rarely gone out and library books were our main source of relaxation, apart from making love and strolling along the beach. Even the computer was mostly restricted to being used for Shirley's studies to save money by having a minimal plan.
We'd been together now for almost seven years, always poor, but always happy. Our honeymoon had turned out to be an incredible experience, albeit not something we could discuss with others as it had been somewhat out of the ordinary. We both felt we had been lucky to have met and become so close to Greg during that time. Some of the things we'd done during that week, especially the last few days, had featured as fantasies a number of times during our sexual activities, giving us both extremely intense climaxes when we relived, at least in our shared imagination, one of our threesomes. We had a very trusty 'friend' to assist us, but it often needed new batteries!
Nevertheless, neither of us had suggested getting in touch with him again. He had given me his email address, but not wanted ours, leaving the decision to contact him purely up to us, because we had made it fairly clear at the time, that as much as we had enjoyed what had happened during that week, we wanted to live a more conventional life.
Then one day, Shirley had to go to the doctors to get a new script for the pill, because having a baby had to be at least several years away if possible. Of course as always, the doctor was running behind schedule so she'd read one of those out-of-date news magazines in the waiting room.
"Terry, you won't believe it, but I read about Greg today while I was waiting to see the doctor" she told me in a surprisingly subdued tone.
"What? What's wrong? Is he alright?" I asked immediately sensing something wasn't right.
"He's OK I think, but his parents were both killed in a light aircraft crash about six months ago. He was only mentioned briefly in the article, being their only surviving child" she replied.
"Oh, how sad. I feel bad now that we haven't contacted him. Do you think I should write him an email? I've still got his address, but what do you think I should say to him?"
"Yes, I think you should write. Tell him the truth that we only found out today about his parents and hope he's alright and that we are thinking of him. If he doesn't reply then we can at least know we've tried to do the right thing" she suggested.
So I used her computer to write as she had suggested, but also filling him in briefly about how we were, mentioning that Shirley had her final exams over the next ten days.
It was a couple of days before I checked our emails again and was pleased to see there was a response from Greg. I quickly called out to Shirley, who joined me as we read his reply.
'It was so good to get your email: I always hoped to hear from you again. Thanks for your sentiments and yes, it was very sad what happened to my parents, but I guess it has made me grow up very quickly. When your exams are over (and I wish you all the best with them, Shirley) I would love to catch up with you both again. Let me know if you can come down on a Saturday night as soon after you finish uni as you wish, so that I can take you out for a celebratory dinner. There's plenty of bedrooms here as I'm living by myself in the family mansion, which is beside the beach, so I hope you'll stay the night. LoL Greg'
"Wow, what do you think?" was Shirley's immediate reaction.
"Well I for one would like to catch up with Greg and the offer sounds too good to refuse" I replied instantly, without thought, before adding "but what about you?"
"Well, yes, I think under the circumstances I think it would be appropriate. He was so nice to us on our honeymoon, and I don't just mean the sex, and well I guess he does sound like he could use a bit of a cheering up, so yes, I think we should go if it's alright with you" she eventually got out after some hesitation.
So, after exchanging a few emails, it was agreed that we would catch the train down to Sydney on the Saturday after she finished her exams. We let Greg know what time we were due at Central Station as he had offered to pick us up there.
It was quite hot for mid November, around 30 degrees Celsius, but then it was almost summer. Shirley and I were both dressed for the warm day; I was wearing longish shorts, short sleeve shirt and my joggers, while she was in a summery, floral cotton dress with sandals. Actually she looked rather good, but then again she always did.
As we walked along the platform at Central Station just after midday, me carrying two overnight bags and Shirley just her purse, we both saw Greg at the same time.
"Greg!" she squealed and ran straight to him, allowing him to sweep her into his arms and kiss her on the lips, albeit briefly. He then turned to me, as I put the bags down and we went straight into a manly hug.
"So good to see you both again. You both look pretty good for an old married couple. The vehicle's waiting just outside" he said as he picked up one of our bags and led us out of the station.
'Vehicle' was a bit of an understatement – it was a stretch limo complete with chauffeur.
"Too hard to find parking here, so I used the hire car and driver" Greg explained, adding "besides, there's no way I could talk to you and drive through this traffic."
The drive didn't seem to take too long, probably 45 minutes, and the closer we got to the beach, the bigger the houses seemed to get. We chatted non-stop, but not before we'd expressed our sincere sympathy about his parents. But there was no reference by any of us to what we'd enjoyed on our honeymoon.
Greg explained a bit more about the tragic accident that killed both his parents and how busy he'd been since, trying to run the family company as the sole heir, working virtually seven long days a week. But he quickly assured us that he had taken 24 hours off so that he could spend some quality time with us.
His description of his house as a mansion scarcely did it justice. Sure it was huge, but it was wonderfully decorated with everything imaginable. Greg took us upstairs to a guest room, with its king size bed and a huge private bathroom, just one of three bedroom suites in the guest wing we saw shortly. After we dropped our bags, he took us to see the rest of the house: the other two bedrooms in the guest wing, both equally as big and with their own bathrooms, then across a hall to the other wing to his master bedroom with its unbelievably big walk-in clothes closet, a bathroom complete with a spa and Jacuzzi and a private sitting room with its own balcony looking out over the beach.
Next we went downstairs where he showed us the spacious lounge room, a full size billiard room complete with a bar that would have done a hotel proud, a media room with its home theatre, his study, the dining room where the long table had 12 chairs and lots of room and finally a huge kitchen that would not have been out of place in a good restaurant.
Here we were introduced to an older lady, Madge, who apparently was the housekeeper, cook and maid rolled into one. There were, he told us, two other ladies who came in twice a week to clean and do the washing and ironing, as well as one of their husbands who came at the same time to do the garden and pool maintenance.
"A better cook I'm sure you couldn't find" he told us with a smile as we greeted Madge.
"You know that flattery will do you no good, young Master Greg" she said, pretending to be gruff, but I could see the twinkle in her eye as she beamed with pride, before adding "well I'll be off then. I've set your lunch up by the pool as you requested. If there's nothing else, I'll see you tomorrow afternoon. I didn't leave you any dinner because you said you were going out tonight."
After assuring her he didn't need her to do anything else, she left. He explained that she generally had 24 hours off once a week often from Saturday afternoon to Sunday lunch depending on what his parents needed, but since their death she had been very flexible looking after him more as a surrogate mother than an employee. Besides, he added, she had been with the family since he was born.
Greg suggested we freshen up and then join him by the pool for lunch, so we traipsed back upstairs.
.... There is more of this story ...