I stood staring at the casket being lowered into the ground. I could hear the quiet roar of traffic and muted conversation in the background as the friends and family left my wife's graveside services. My children Alexander age 21 and Chelsea age 20 stood on each side of me. We were wrapped in each other's arms and in our sorrow. I felt them shaking as they quietly cried along with me. Unfortunately their sorrow was much greater than was mine.
I knew I should be more upset at Joan's death but, in a warped, perverted way I was pleased it had come to this. At least this way I was spared the pain and suffering of a divorce and the financial disruption it would have entailed. A divorce you ask? Well, yes. You see the night she died in a traffic accident was the night I found out I was married to a lying, cheating slut.
I let out a wavering sigh and remembered once again the happiness of our early years and how my marriage spiraled out of control over the last two years. Joan and I had been going steady our last year of high school and first year of college. We became intimate and we found we both loved to fuck. We almost lost our scholarships the first semester of college because we took to the party scene and sex so well. Oh, sure we had to live in the dorm but we still found a way to be together nearly every night. Like the young sexual beings we were we found a place to screw several nights a week.
Joan wasn't on the pill. Our birth control of choice was rubbers. Occasionally when she thought it was safe we would go bareback. We both preferred the natural feeling of unprotected sex. I asked many times for Joan to go on the pill but she refused because she did not want to take a chance of her parents finding out. As is normal, a time or two a rubber broke. We never did figure out if she got pregnant because of a broken rubber or if one time she wasn't "safe" like she thought she was. Whatever the reason, she did get pregnant and we elected to get married. Since she had to care for the child Joan did not finish college. I continued and promised her she could return to college to finish her degree after we were settled and the kid was old enough for day care.
It seemed like a good time for Joan to return to college never came. Finally when Alexander was a college freshman and Chelsea a high school senior Joan enrolled in college once more. She took to it like a duck to water. It was as if she had never quit, she immersed herself in the class work and, unfortunately, she decided to experience the entire college experience. She made friends that were slightly younger than her all the way down to our children's age. If they were "good people" she took them into her circle of friends. As the got more and more wrapped up in the college social scene she began to change. She was no longer my loving stay at home wife. She began to treat me with disrespect and got upset when I complained about all the time she spent away from home in the evenings. She began to come home later and later and many times she was drunk and her clothing was mussed. Joan became distant and resented social outings with our friends or for my job.
Oh, sure, she had a reason for being late coming home on non-class nights as well as nights she had classes. According to her, she had to study in the library, she had a night course then afterwards she and some of her friends went to a local hang out to discuss the class. She needed to unwind, etc. I guess I was like most cuckolds. I just didn't see the signs of a cheating slut. All I knew for sure was our sex life went from full ahead to dead stop within about a year of her returning to college. She always had an excuse—too tired, headache, has to get up early the next day and so on. I got laid maybe once a week if I was lucky and then it was as if it was just a favor she granted me.
Literally my world came crashing down on a Thursday evening. Joan had a night class that should have ended about 9:20 p.m. Considering the distance we lived from the University and traffic she should have been home no later than 10:15. I finally gave up and went to bed without her at 11:30. Of course I was angry. She had promised me she would stop staying out with her friends, that she would come home early—HA!
My doorbell ringing awakened me at 1:20 a.m. Before I got to the door someone began pounding on it. "OK, OK," I yelled as I grabbed my pants (I sleep nude), turned the bedroom light on and stumbled toward the front room. "Who is it?" I asked. Finally I reached the door and flung it opened. I was angry, expecting to find my drunken wife wanting in and unable to get her key into the lock once more.
I stopped in shock when I saw a police officer standing on my porch. I looked further out through the opened door and saw a black and white sitting in my driveway. The officer flinched back then he asked, "Mr. Rowland?"
"Is your wife Joan Rowland?"
When I nodded my head yes the officer continued, "Mr. Rowland I am afraid I have some bad news for you. The van your wife was riding in this evening was hit broadside by a semi truck. I am afraid she and the three young men with her died in the accident. The semi driver had apparently been drinking and ran a red light at a high rate of speed. I'm sorry sir. Are you alone sir or is there someone you can call? I"
About that time my daughter Chelsea came wandering down the stairs. She was dressed in her robe and was rubbing sleep out of her eyes. "Daddy, what is it?"
The officer looked at her then he said, "Sir, I'm sorry. If you would stop by the station in a day or two the accident report will be ready. We will also need you to view the body for verification at your earliest convenience." He tipped his hat and said, "Ma'am. I'll just leave you folks now. Once again, I'm sorry."
I stood in the door watching the police car back from my driveway then accelerate away. I felt the tears running down my cheeks and then Chelsea wrapped her arm around me and guided me back into the house. After I told her what had happened we sat together in the living room crying.
We dozed sitting together on the couch. Finally about 6 a.m., I shook myself and began to make plans for the next several days. I called my son at his apartment, then Joan's parents and my parents. I also called the funeral home and made arrangements for them to pick up the body. I was still in a state of shock but was beginning to function somewhat. Before I had much time to think of the implications of my wife's death a man from the funeral home called. He said they could not pick up the body until after I had positively identified it.
I called to make arrangements to view Joan's body. While I was talking on the phone I remembered the officer had said Joan was killed riding in a van. I called the police to verify that she was not in her car. I also asked about her purse and other personal effects. The officer told me they had no personal effects of Joan's. The records showed they had identified her tentatively based upon a medical warning bracelet she was wearing. After I had identified Joan's body my daughter and I went to the university and drove around until we found Joan's parked car. I gave Chelsea the spare key. I waited until she had the car started then drove off toward my home with her following.
When we arrived home Chelsea and I searched the inside of the car for Joan's purse and books. When they weren't there we opened the trunk and found several items—many which should not have been there. Joan's purse was lying neatly in the trunk on top of the carefully folded dress she had worn to class the night before. When we opened her purse we found several unused condoms. Later that day, to pass time I began to clean out the car and found three used condoms under the front seat. I was beginning to become upset, nay angry.
Occasionally Chelsea drives our car to college instead of her small pick up truck. My first thought was she had entertained one of her boy friends in the back seat and let him discard the used condoms in the floor. I backed out of the car with the damning evidence in my hand and yelled, "Chelsea! Come here a minute please."
When Chelsea came into the garage, her eyes still red from crying I turned to her and snarled, "How do you explain these?" and shook the condoms in her face. I watched it turn white, then red as I resumed speaking. "I thought ... No; I hoped we had raised you better than this. You know rubbers aren't the best form of birth control. I know your mother told you the trouble you can get into using them. How could you take a chance like that?"
Chelsea stood looking at me in shock, then her face broke down and she began bawling once more. Through her tears I heard her say, "Oh, Daddy, how could you even think I would do something like that? I am on the pill and do make a new boyfriend use a condom but I would NEVER leave them in Mom's car!"
"Are you telling me these aren't yours? You borrowed the car last weekend. Who else could... ?" I felt my stomach clench and I became nauseous. I stopped speaking and stood looking at my daughter. She was staring into my eyes and I saw the same thought hit her too. Her hand came up to her mouth as she flushed once more. "OH," she said. "Oh, no, no Daddy it couldn't be ... Maybe it was Alex. He uses Mom's car sometimes."
The rest of that day and the next were filled with phone calls and visits from family and friends. Our out of town family began arriving for the services. Finally, I called the police station and found the accident report was ready. I told my family I was going for it and Chelsea looked up from her conversation. "Wait Daddy. I'm going with you."
.... There is more of this story ...