Foreword: READ THIS FIRST
After reading Agena's "A Joke", then reading all of the endings, I wasn't ever really satisfied with any of them. Even Triple T's "Texas Ending" and "Texas Epilogue" just didn't sit right with me. I understand where he's coming from, and both his Ending and Epilogue are 5 star reads. However, I just felt my teeth itching to take Agena up on his invitation to write my own.
READ "A Joke" first, if you haven't already. I take over this one as the "sex session" between Roger and Flo is wrapping up.
FAIR WARNING: This is going to be kind of dark and violent. It explores the ramifications of not just cheating, but of the trust lost even if the cheating never really happened. It also explores the consequences of the Revenge itself. If that offends you, stop now and move on to something else. If you read it, then complain about the content, that makes your complaint NMP [Not My Problem]
Everyone else, please enjoy the ride. :)
I couldn't believe what I'd just heard. There I was, trapped and handcuffed in Roger Berman's basement. I'd been struggling to get out of the damned handcuffs that he'd locked me to the pipe with, and was having no luck, other than to rub my wrists raw and bleeding.
My wife's pleas to Roger to "fuck me harder" and "make me come" had enraged me beyond what I thought possible. Now, I've always had a bit of a temper, but nothing had ever filled me with this much pure, primal, unadulterated rage and fury!
"Unadulterated." I muttered to myself with a bitter laugh. "Can't believe I thought of that word in this situation!"
I growled low in my throat as the primal fury that comes from deep within our primitive animal "caveman" psyche that's inside all of us came forward. I'd just had to listen to another man fuck my wife, for God's sake! Now, there might be some guys who get off on that bullshit, but I'm not one of them.
I heard them moving around and whispering to each other. I heard them talking about Alice coming back soon, and that it wouldn't be good for her to catch them in bed together. Their cavalier attitude about the whole thing drove the point home for me all the harder.
All of a sudden, a sadness came over me as I realized that there was no going back from this. Flo, the love of my life, the woman I had wanted to grow old with, had just betrayed me in one of the worst ways possible. I'm not sure where the thoughts came from, but I just KNEW that they couldn't let me live after this. Flo had to know that our marriage was over, and I would never forgive them. They had to know that I would tell Alice everything. She would divorce Roger, and take him to the cleaners. I knew that I was a dead man.
I was openly sobbing when I heard their footsteps on the stairs coming down to the basement. How would they do it? A single gunshot to the head, execution style? Would they torture me first? Fuck, I would rather be waterboarded than have to listen to them fucking and ruining two marriages! I was broken from my self-destructive reverie by Roger's voice.
"Oh, shit! Look at his wrists! They're all bloody!" Roger said with a hint of fear in his voice.
"Honey, it was just a joke. Nothing happened. Oh God, I'm so sorry. Hurry up Roger, unlock the cuffs so we can get his wrists bandaged. Oh God, oh God. I never thought he'd take it this hard." Flo seemed genuinely concerned. I nearly laughed at that, if I hadn't been so bone tired. Hell, my SOUL was tired of it all. Was this another sick joke of theirs before the end? Were they going to make me think they would let me live, just to execute me for the crime of trusting my wife?
I blinked a few times, the tears streaming down my face. The look on Roger's face was one of concern and even a bit of fear, but I could detect something else. Smug satisfaction in the twitch of his lip as he couldn't hide the fact that he'd just fucked my wife. The rage built in me again, and from some previously unknown reserve of that primal, primeval, animal, caveman fury, I found my strength returning.
He uncuffed my right hand, and I let it drop as he undid the cuff from my left hand. My expression of utter defeat hadn't changed. Outwardly, I appeared the same as when they'd found me as I fell to my knees.
"We have to get his wrists cleaned up before they get infected!" Flo shouted to Roger. "Where is your first-aid..." Her words died off as I finally acted.
Like a rattlesnake, my hands shot out as I grabbed Roger around his throat. Nothing could break my iron grip, and my knee was a blur as I stood up with him, kneeing him in the balls over and over and over again. "HOW'S"-knee-to-balls-"THIS"-knee-to-balls-"FOR"-knee-to-balls-"A"-knee-to-balls-"FUCKIN'"-knee-to-balls-"JOKE"-knee-to-balls-"YOU"-knee-to-balls-"SORRY"-knee-to-balls-"SACK"-knee-to-balls-"OF"-knee-to-balls-"SHIT!!!"-knee-to-fuckin'-balls.
"You rotten shit eating son of a whore!" I shouted in his face, spit flying from my lips as my hands tightened on his throat and my knee repeatedly slammed into his crotch. "You just had to do it, didn't you, you sack of fucking shit?! You motherfucking piece garbage!" I kept up the steady assault on his balls with my other knee, now. My right leg had gotten tired.
Roger at first tried screaming through my grip on his throat, and made the mistake of grabbing my arms to try and break my grasp. That wasn't going to happen. Years of working with my hands and arms had made them tough as rawhide and strong as iron. By the time I landed my umpteenth knee into his groin, he was incoherent and barely conscious from the intense pain I knew he had to be feeling. I'd been in enough bar fights in my life to know how it feels to be kicked in the balls. It was time to show this motherfucking son of a bitch what it was like too!
"Stop it, Jim!" Flo shouted at me over and over as I battered her lover's balls with my knees. She finally found the nerve to grab my arm to get me to release him.
I glared at her with a look of pure venom. "Get your hand off me, you damned dirty SLUT!" I shouted at her, paraphrasing one of the greatest movie lines of all time. That was for you, Mr. Heston, God Rest Your Soul.
She removed her hand from my arm like it had been burned. Tears were streaming down her face as she sobbed apology after apology at me. "It was just a joke, baby. Nothing happened!" became her mantra.
I noted that Roger was unconscious now, so I dropped him like the sack of shit he was. He was still breathing, so I knew I hadn't killed him ... yet. I was admittedly still debating whether or not to do so.
"Give me your cellphone. I need to call 911, and you're crying too much to be coherent." I said it in a calmer tone of voice, and held out my hand to her. She wordlessly reached into her pocket and pulled out her iPhone, handing it to me as she continued to sob and cry.
I hit 911 and the operator came on immediately. "911, please state the nature of your emergency."
"Yes, my name is Jim Reynolds and I'm calling to report a crime." The tears from Flo stopped at that, and she looked at me with dawning horror on her face.
I continued. "I'm at my next door neighbor's house. His name is Roger Berman. He and my wife Florence Reynolds handcuffed me and forced me to listen to them fucking. My wrists are a bloody mess, so I will need an ambulance as well as the police to this address." I gave the lady the address. "I felt in fear of my life, and assaulted Roger when he released me. He will need an ambulance too."
"Jim, the police and EMTs have been dispatched to the address you gave me," she informed me.
"Thank you," I responded. I hung up and looked at Flo.
"Oh my God!" Flo shouted. Her face was now a mask of terror as she realized what she had done and allowed to happen.
I decided to throw her a lifeline. "Florence, if you tell the truth about what Roger did to me and what you allowed him to do to me, I will recommend that you not go to jail. If you try to lie, I will kill you right in front of the cops. I've never raised my hand to you in anger before, but right now, I'm a cunt hair away from killing both you and this asshole." I punctuated that with a kick to his probably already ruined balls, which woke him up momentarily. He screamed like a little girl and passed out again.
Her look of shock and terror was priceless. Did I still love her? No. She had killed my love for her with the constant disrespect and then this last humiliation. Was I prepared to kill her? Tempted as I was, no. But right then, I didn't want her to know that.
"Do you understand me?" I finally asked. She was still in shock that I would say such things to her.
Her eyes were haunted as she looked at me. "Yes," she nodded. "Oh, God, Jim. I'm so, so sorry! It really was just a joke, baby! I swear to God, it will never happen again!"
I nodded solemnly. "You're right, Florence." She hated it when I called her that, but the shock was so deep in her that she hadn't even called me on it. "It won't happen again. Ever."
I guess the finality of my words was enough to partially snap her out of her fugue. Her eyes snapped upward to mine. "What does that mean?"
There was a hard knock at the door as the cops arrived. I just shook my head at Flo and went up the stairs from the basement to the front door.
When I opened the door, the cops were already on edge. The EMTs and ambulance were waiting on the cops to clear them to enter.
"I'm Jim Reynolds. I'm the one who called you guys." I nodded to them, then showed them my wrists. "Roger Berman is unconscious in the basement. He is going to need more medical attention than I do."
"Ok, may we enter?" Sergeant Cooper, the older cop asked.
I shrugged and stepped aside. Flo had followed me up from the basement, her anguish clear on her face. "Ma'am? Are you ok?" The younger cop, Officer Daniels asked. "Are you Mrs. Berman or Mrs. Reynolds?"
"I ... I'm ok, and I'm Flo Reynolds, Jim's wife." She said it with a mechanical voice that told me she was back in shock over the whole mess.
"She's prepared to tell the truth. She didn't do anything to physically restrain me. That was all on Roger." I lived up to my promise as I recommended that she might not have been in her right mind when she allowed Roger to restrain me. I gave them the impression that he might have coerced her. "He's downstairs, and he was unconscious, the last I saw him." I motioned towards the stairs leading down to the basement.
Sergeant Cooper went to the door and motioned the EMTs to come on up. There were four of them, from two ambulances. That 911 operator wasn't messing around if she dispatched TWO of them! The Sergeant had one set attend to me while he took the other two downstairs to make sure they didn't muck up the crime scene.
Officer Daniels sat my wife down on the couch in Roger's and Alice's living room. He then proceeded to take her statement. She told him everything, repeating over and over "It was just supposed to be a joke. We didn't really do anything!" as she cried her eyes out.
While she was giving her statement, two Detectives showed up. I knew Rick Wilson from High School, and his partner, Ashleigh Crawford was ten years younger than us, and married to my buddy Larry at work. Larry was a bit of a dickhead, but whatever. Ash, on the other hand, was as sweet as can be, unless she was in Cop Mode. Then she was all business, no-nonsense, and didn't take shit off of anybody.
Then Alice pulled in, frantic that something had happened. She'd heard about the dispatch while trying to get the shit at the hospital taken care of, but when she was sure that Roger had pulled another fast one on her, she'd come back praying that Roger had gotten fucked up for his bullshit.
Well, she got her wish. Roger had been fucked up really badly. After all the bullshit over the past few years, the motherfucker had it coming! I told the Detectives my side, and the physical evidence corroborated my side of things. Sergeant Cooper came back upstairs with the EMTs and Roger cuffed to a gurney. He gave his report to Detective Wilson, and Rick just shook his head with a wry smile as he read my statement about being in fear for my life.
"Dammit, Jim!" Rick half-shouted. "I'm a cop, not a doctor!"
"Yeah, yeah. Damn Trekkie." I laughed at him. He then went outside with the EMTs, and I heard him place Roger under arrest for Unlawful Detainment and Felony Assault for handcuffing me to the fuckin' pipe.
Roger, who had come back around to consciousness, protested loudly that it had all been a harmless prank. Rick wasn't buying it, and had Officer Daniels ride with Roger to the hospital while Sergeant Cooper took over questioning Flo.
Alice just stood there, listening to everything that was going on. When she'd heard all she needed to hear, she walked up to Flo and decked my soon-to-be ex-wife. No slap. A heavy right cross that knocked Flo ass over teakettle onto the couch.
"You fuckin' BITCH!" Alice screamed. "I can't believe you would do that shit with Roger! You have a wonderful husband who loves you dearly!"
"Loved. Past tense." I corrected her, and Alice gave me such a look of sadness, that I thought for sure she would cry. Then she looked back at Flo with a renewed fire in her eyes.
"Loved you dearly! Looks like you and Roger finally went too damned far, doesn't it! I don't even care if you fucked him for real. I'm divorcing his sorry ass and taking him for every damned penny he's got!" Alice finally ran out of steam, collapsing into a nearby chair and putting her face in her hands as she cried.
Ash went over and comforted her while Sergeant Cooper came over to me as the EMTs from the second ambulance finished bandaging my wrists. "You sure you don't want to press charges against her?" He asked.
"Not for the moment." I confirmed. Then an idea struck me. "Flo!" I called her name.
She looked at me. "What is it, baby?" She had some hope in her eyes.
"You want to prove that you and Roger didn't have sex?" I asked. There was a small chance that if she didn't sleep with Roger, I MIGHT be able to take her back. I was still thinking about it, but I needed to think clearly, and that wasn't going to happen here.
"Yes! Anything, baby!" She pleaded with her voice and her eyes.
I turned to Rick and Ash. "Do you guys have one of those rape kits around?"
"We do." The female EMT said. "I can grab it from the ambulance."
"What you got in mind, Jim?" Rick asked.
"Flo," I said, addressing my wife, "if you let them run one of those rape kits on you, and it comes back negative, It'll go a long way towards me taking you back, maybe. I'm not sure yet, but if you do this, it might help restore some small measure of trust in you if it comes back negative."
That was Flo's only chance to work at saving our marriage. Rick and Ash looked at Flo expectantly.
Now, if Flo really didn't sleep with Roger, and if she really did want to save our marriage, she should have jumped at the chance to prove her innocence.
Instead, she turned pale as a ghost. She looked into my eyes for any sympathy. Unfortunately for her, I had none to give. I think it was in that moment that I realized fully that I had no more love for her. The constant disrespect she'd shown me over the last few years with the practical jokes, combined with this latest insult and humiliation, had done it. I felt cold contempt for her, now. Her reluctance to have the cops and EMTs run the rape kit on her was just the final nail in the coffin of what had once been a happy marriage.
"Flo, you should be jumping at the chance to clear your name. Instead, you have to THINK about it? It's simple." I shrugged, no longer really caring if she did it or not.
"I can't believe you would force me to do it!" She shrieked at me. "I love you, baby! Only you! We didn't do anything wrong! We didn't have sex!"
"Then prove it!" I shouted back. "I'm not FORCING you to do anything. You always have a choice, Florence. Right now, your choices are to take the test, let them run the rape kit on you, or don't. Those are your choices. The consequences of NOT taking the test are a foregone conclusion, though. Now, you can keep protesting your innocence with NO proof to back it up, or you can take the test and at least show you're willing to work on our marriage. Those are your choices!"
I shook my head and started towards the door. I looked back at Flo. "Come by the house in an hour, and I'll have you stuff packed up for you. You can move in with your sister until you find your own place."
"Stop! I'll do it!" She pleaded in a desperate tone of voice.
I nodded. "Ok. Well, move in with your sister anyway. If the test comes back and proves that you didn't fuck Roger, then and ONLY then will we talk. If for ANY reason, the test comes back and shows that you and Roger had sex, I will Divorce you so fast it will make your head spin."
She got a defiant look on her face. "Then I'll do it and prove to you once and for all that NOTHING happened!"
Now, Flo is one of the most hard-headed women on the face of the Earth. She HAD to think it was her idea all along, otherwise her stubbornly stupid streak would keep her from doing ANYTHING I suggested, or in this case, gave to her as an ultimatum. Who knows how women think? I sure as fuck don't. They have these weird notions about shit, and I only know a little bit of how Flo thinks after 20+ years together.
"Good." I turned and looked at Rick. "Let me know what the results are before you call Flo."
"Will do, buddy." Rick nodded at me with a smile.
I nodded back and walked out the door. I went across the yards to my house and got into my truck. I drove to Home Depot and bought some lock sets and keys. Then I drove home and installed them in less than an hour. I also changed the garage door code so that her remote opener wouldn't work anymore.
I had thrown most of her clothes into four garbage bags, and her toiletries in a smaller bag as well, when the doorbell rang. I hauled the shit out to the foyer and opened the door to find Flo's sister, Shelly, standing there with a distraught looking Flo.
"My key doesn't work." Flo looked even more distraught at that.
"No shit. I just bought new locks and changed them. This is my house, remember? Bought and paid for by my parents and given to me before we got married." I shook my head. "That means you have no claim on it or anything in it except what you brought into this house, and what we bought together. If we do get Divorced, then and only then will we divvy up the stuff we bought together. Until then, here's your clothes and toiletries, and have a nice day."
"But baby, can't we talk now?"
"No. I need to cool the fuck down before we have any kind of talk. Florence, I nearly hit you an hour ago when you defended that scumbag. I have NEVER, and God willing WILL NEVER hit a woman. You pushed me to the point where I was ready to, though, and I don't like that feeling."
"I ... I understand." Flo looked even more haggard as she realized just how far into the ditch she'd gone. How far into the ditch she'd dragged our marriage and the love I once had for her. Right then, our marriage was hanging by the slimmest thread possible.
She cried for a minute, then steeled herself and sniffled. I nodded to her and her sister.
"Here's her stuff." I started handing them the garbage bags, and looked at Flo. "Well? Did they say when the results would be in?"
She shook her head glumly. "Monday, they said. They have to run everything through some machine, but everyone in the crime lab is off until Monday."
"Then Monday we'll find out for sure." I said evenly. They finished loading Flo's stuff into Shelly's car and left together.
I retired to my Lazy Boy and opened a micro brew. The rich dark ale helped to ease my temper some, even though I was still really angry at the whole mess. I didn't care what they said. I KNOW what I heard. I would recognize the sound of my wife having a massive orgasm from a mile away. That keening sound she makes is unmistakable. All those years together, hearing it had been music to my ears whenever we fucked or made love. Now, just the thought of her making that sound made me sick to my stomach.
Then the hard choices started. Did I tell Eric and Patty? Of course, I had to tell them. I wouldn't let Flo make me out to be the villain in this little play.
No, the really hard question was: How do I tell my kids that all evidence so far was pointing to their mother cheating on me with a man that neither of them really liked? Yes, that's right. Flo had ignored or laughed off their concerns about Roger too, just as she'd laughed off my concerns.
We have a sense of humor in our family. We aren't a bunch of stuffed shirts, but Roger's practical jokes had been going on and on and on and on for too damned long, and had gotten increasingly lewd and just plain worse over the years. This last one, if it had even been a joke at all, had gone way over the line. This one had gone so far over that there was no coming back.
Whether or not they actually did anything, there was no way in Hell that I was going to forgive the asshole this time. Whether or not, by some miracle I took Flo back, Roger would be out of our lives one way or another. I had no doubt in my mind that if also, by some miracle Alice took him back after this one, the first time he said a word to me, I would knock his teeth down his throat.
Yes, I was THAT angry with him. I was madder than hell at the motherfuckin' son-of-a-bitch. Now, I am not the kind of guy who holds grudges. Don't mistake me for THAT guy who can never let anything go. But then imagine if it had been your "friend" and your wife that had done to you what Roger and Flo had done to me. Then you might just see where I'm coming from, here.
Well, I finally sighed and figured I might as well get the unpleasant calls over with. First up, I called Eric.
"Hey, Dad!" He greeted me.
"Hey, Buddy." I tried to be cheerful, but it just didn't fly. He could tell immediately.
"Ok, what's wrong, Dad?"
I let out another deep breath as a loud sigh. "Well, a couple of hours ago, Roger Berman was arrested for Felony Assault and Unlawful Restraint."
"Holy crap! Really?"
"Yes, really, and your mother was almost arrested along with him."
"Wait-what?! Dad, you're joking, right?! What the Hell happened?!"
So I gave him the short and Edited-for-minors edition of what had gone on, even though he was out and on his own. I pulled no punches about how I'd struggled to get free or the state of my wrists, however. Both were still bandaged, and I would need to change them soon as the blood had started to seep through.
"Oh my God! Dad, are you SURE that Mom would do that?!"
"I know what I heard, Eric. I won't go into detail, but there were tell-tale signs that they were going all the way. The cops have it all in the police report, though."
"Jesus, Dad! I can't believe that asshole managed to seduce Mom! There has to be some mistake!"
"I know what you mean, but I also know what I heard. Your mother was upstairs with him for over half an hour, and I know what I heard. There's no way in Hell that those sounds can be faked."
"Is there any chance you could be wrong?"
"Very slim, but I'll know for sure on Monday."
"Why? What's Monday?"
"That's the day the crime lab finishes with the rape kit the cops ran on your mother to prove one way or another whether or not she had sex with Roger."
Eric surprised me by laughing. "Wow! Whose idea was that? That's one way to tell for sure!"
"Mine, actually. I've seen enough Law & Order: SVU to know that they can tell a lot from one of those rape kits. Semen, pre-cum, DNA, even condom lube can be gathered by those things. One way or another, Monday is going to at least partially decide if your mother and I get Divorced."
"What do you mean by 'partially', Dad?"
"I mean that even if she didn't do it, I still might just Divorce her for the blatant disrespect and humiliation they've put me through since that asshole moved in. I've had enough, Son, and I'm tired of it all." I let my mental fatigue show as I said that last sentence. Eric was quiet for a long moment before speaking again.
"I understand, Dad. If Kenna did that to me, I would drop her like a ton of bricks." Kenna was Eric's fiancé, and a very sweet girl. I had a feeling she would never do that to Eric, but I could definitely empathize with him if she did and he decided to ditch her.
"Well, I hope she doesn't. I do want grandkids someday, and she obviously loves you."
"You're right, Dad, and I love her too."
"Good. Give her my love, and I'll talk to you later."
"Ok, Dad. Love you."
"Love you too, Son. Bye."
"Bye." He Ended the call.
I decided that I needed another beer before calling Patty. Eric, I knew would kind of understand. Patty, on the other hand, was a whole other ball of wax. She was a momma's girl, and I'd already seen Flo's sense of humor in her, even at her young age. Yeah, this wasn't going to be fun.
So after downing half of the second dark ale, I dialed Patty's number.
I was right. It wasn't anywhere near fun. Patty just couldn't believe that her mother, my wife, would do any such thing. I made it perfectly clear to her what I'd heard, and even if it was just a joke, they had gone way over the line so far, it wasn't likely that I'd ever take her back.
"But dad, what if she didn't really do anything with that slimeball?" Yeah, Patty didn't like Roger either. I think I mentioned that already, but if not, then now I have.
"Pumpkin, the disrespect she's been showing me for the last few years when they'd pull their pranks, after saying 'never again' when I blow up at her, has gone too far. I will not be taking her back anytime soon. Your mother has gone too far this time. I'm sorry." I laid it all out for her. "Patty, I could actually have her charged as an accessory to what Roger did to me. They didn't just pull a prank this time, they broke the law."
That shut Patty up. I could pretty much hear the wheels turning in her head as she thought about what I'd just said. After a minute, I heard her sigh.
"Dad, I still think you should give Mom another chance." Yeah, I knew it was coming. Both our kids love their Mom. Eric was pissed off, but Patty was just saddened by the whole mess.
"I'll think about it, Pumpkin. No promises, though." It was the best I could manage. I really didn't see Flo as my wife anymore. I just couldn't get over it like Patty wanted. I'd think about it, though. I'm a man of my word, after all.
"Thanks, Daddy." I could hear the smile in Patty's voice as she said it.
"Don't thank me yet, sweety. I'm serious, here. Your mother is going to have to jump through some serious hoops if she wants me to forgive her for this one." I went on to explain about the rape kit and how the results could determine whether or not I took her back or had her charged as Roger's accessory and Divorced her.
That brought Patty up short again. "I ... I understand, Daddy," was all she said.
"I'm glad you do, Pumpkin. I'll talk to you later."
"Ok, I love you, Daddy."
"I love you too, Pumpkin. Bye."
"Bye, Daddy." I heard her sniffle just before she Ended the call.
The phone calls out of the way, I finally had time to really think about where my marriage was going. I reviewed everything in my head, over and over and over again. The common cause of each piece of hurt I'd put up with over the last few years was Roger Fuckin' Berman. The fucktard had been at the heart of everything. Every time I got so angry I could barely see straight. Every time I contemplated murder. Every huge argument that Flo and I had. It all came back to Roger and his fuckin' stupid practical jokes.
In a sense, I was partially to blame, too. I should have put my foot down after the one before, where they first looked like they were making out while Alice and I had been outside. I should have done something then. I wondered if "One more time, Flo, and I'm going to Divorce you!" would have done any good. Knowing how stupid Flo had become because of Roger, and the more I thought about it, the less I held out any hope for her wising up.
Hell, it had taken THIS happening for her to see how much she and Roger had hurt Alice and me. It had taken a "joke" going way too far and I had warned her that they would someday. I just didn't expect it to be within weeks of the warning I'd given her.
Before I got too drunk, I decided to go to the local liquor store and buy some more of that great dark ale. I bought a full case, then took it home and proceeded to get completely shitfaced.
I know, getting drunk doesn't usually help the thought process. But in my case, this time it did. It gave me a clarity of thought that I hadn't had in a very long time.
I was able to see the pattern, now. Roger and the way he looked at Flo when he thought that Alice and I weren't watching. At the times I'd caught him looking, I at first thought he might be planning a joke on her too. However, thinking back now, that twinkle in his eyes wasn't mischief. It was lust. He'd been planning her seduction for a very long time!
Now, Flo isn't some slut wife like you read about sometimes on sites like Literotica or whatever. If Roger had come right out and tried to seduce her, she would have slapped him upside the face, told Alice about it, and we would never have socialized with him again.
She had done a few really stupid things during our marriage. Nothing as huge as this, but still pretty boneheaded. The difference this time, besides the obvious, was that she didn't learn from her mistakes as she had in the past. Every escalation with Roger's "jokes" had been another nail in the coffin of our marriage. Usually, hindsight is always 20/20, and for me it is. For her, however, she was holding out hope that we could get past this.
For some odd reason (ha), I wasn't willing to put it in the past anymore. This had been the final straw.
I don't remember much about the rest of the night after my epiphanies. Yeah, I got rip-snorting shitfaced and ended up worshipping-at-the-porcelain-altar to the Gods of Drunkenness, Ralph and his good buddy Earl. I passed out with my face on the toilet seat.
Needless to say, I woke up in the morning with the Mother of All Hangovers. So I did the only thing I could think of in that situation. I had another beer.
I don't remember much about that weekend, especially Sunday. I was still wondering how the whole Divorce would play out. Would Flo fight it? Shit, the LAST thing I wanted to do was talk to her, or try and listen to her. "But baby, it was just a joke. Nothing happened!" kept floating through my mind as her mantra. But I couldn't ignore that keening sound of her climaxing that I had heard. If she hadn't done that, I might have actually believed her that nothing happened. Yeah, I finished off that case of beer on Sunday.
Monday morning, I decided that I'd drunk enough, and popped about 10 aspirin and drank half a pot of coffee to get rid of the hangover. Then I called off work for a family emergency, and my boss said to take as much time as I needed. Yep, I had a shit ton of unused vacation time accrued, so I was set for pretty much as long as I needed. I also called a lawyer to see what my options were for Divorcing Flo.
He gave me the skinny on what to expect, and ONLY if she didn't fight it, would I walk away scot free, pretty much. If she did fight it, I could wind up paying alimony and giving her half of everything, including my 401K and retirement package.
Shit. Shit, Shit, Shit, SHIT!
I did NOT want to give Flo a damned dime!
Then he gave me an out. After listening to what happened, he said that if she was charged, then the police report could be entered into evidence for the Divorce too. That perked me up. I thanked him for his time, and after hanging up, I sat back to think.
My anger had cooled somewhat at Flo. Roger was still on my Kill-On-Sight list, and Flo was definitely still in the doghouse. But I was thinking that IF she MAYBE didn't fuck Roger, I MIGHT be willing to forgive her EVENTUALLY and MAYBE get past it ... in time.
Yes, I know those are a lot of qualifiers. IF, MAYBE, MIGHT, EVENTUALLY, etc. Now it all hinged on the rape kit and what it would tell me.
Just after 2pm, Rick called me to let me know that the rape kit results were done ... and something I didn't know about, too.
"Jim, you need to come down here. This is strange."
"What's strange, Rick?"
"Just get down to the station." His tone didn't invite argument. I knew from experience that Rick only got that way when telling it wouldn't do. It had to be shown.
"Ok, on my way."
Yes, it was THAT short of a conversation. My curiosity was off the charts as I got into my truck and damn near broke every traffic law getting to the police station, as strange as that might sound.
Once I arrived, I greeted Tonya at the front desk, and she let me into the Detectives area to see Rick. Once I was seated in his office, he pulled out the Crime Lab's report.
"Ok, I knew you wouldn't believe me on this one without proof, Jim. This one has to be seen to be believed."
"Buddy, I don't think I would discount anything right now. I'm already pretty much convinced she cheated, but this will just be the confirmation I need."
Rick got a pensive look on his face. "It's not quite that simple, Jim. The rape kit itself came back negative."
That news stunned me a bit. "Really? You mean she didn't fuck Roger?"
"There was no intercourse, if that's what you mean."
"Well, DUH! What else would I mean?!" Ok, I knew Rick had to say that, as he also had a Cop Mode that stuck as close to the book as possible, even when his own friends were involved. But right then, I was getting tired of not knowing what the hell he was talking about.
"Ok, well the second piece of evidence was that Ash examined Flo's panties while the EMT was running the kit, and found semen on the front of them."
I slumped back in the chair, my mind reeling from what I'd just heard. "You mean he came over the front of her panties?" I asked at length.
"Looks like it, yeah. My guess was that they were either masturbating each other, or they were doing it to themselves as a mutual masturbation thing." Rick took a deep breath. "All Flo told Ash was that it was all 'just a joke' and 'nothing happened', but the DNA came back on the semen sample as belonging to Roger Berman."
Now my anger was back on the rise. "So while they might not have physically cheated, they still cheated."
"Not according to Bill Clinton, and not according to our state law definition of adultery, either. Look, Jim. I can't tell you what to do about Flo. Hell, if it was me, and Kathleen did that to me, I'd divorce her and have the DA throw the book at her for her part in what the asshole did to you." Rick took another deep breath before continuing.
"Roger Berman has already been charged with Unlawful Detainment and Felony Assault for handcuffing you in the basement. The DA thinks he can go one better and introduce Kidnapping. That's a 25-to-Life sentence if he's convicted and if the Judge is in a bad mood that day. Parole after 10-to-15, usually. Hell, with you testifying and the evidence on hand, it would pretty much be a slam dunk. The bad news there is that Flo would probably have to testify as well, in return for a lighter sentence." Rick stopped and looked at me. "Jim, like I said, I can't tell you what to do here, but give the word and the son of a bitch goes away from a very long time."
I smirked a bit as his phraseology. "The Word," I said.
He chuckled again and picked up the phone. 5 minutes later, our DA was filing Kidnapping charges against Roger Berman with a mental cruelty aggravator.
Speaking of ol' Roger, he was still in the hospital under 24 hour police guard. It would be a while before the effects of my self-defense would allow him to get out and into a nice comfy jail cell. Yeah, I'd pretty much wrecked his sorry ass, and if I saw him again, I would probably do the same. Hell, I would be more than happy to go to jail for some Felony Assault on him, myself! As far as I'm concerned, any man that goes the lengths he did to seduce another man's wife, completely disrespecting a man who he supposedly calls a friend and his own loving faithful wife too, deserves everything bad that happens to him.
Roger Berman wasn't a joker. Roger Berman was just scum masquerading as a joker. A sexual predator that used his practical jokes as ways to get a woman into bed. The good news was that he was now facing some serious prison time! Yeah, it wasn't good news for him, but it was excellent news for me and Alice. Roger was pretty well off, for sure. With him in prison, Alice's plan to Divorce the Asshole and take him to the cleaners was well on its way to becoming a reality.
She came over the next weekend and told me several incidences in their old town where he had gone nearly as far as he had with Flo. She had given him an ultimatum: Give it up and move away, or she would Divorce him then and there. He had given in, and they had moved here. For a while, things had been great, until he'd started up his "joking" with Flo and me, this time around. Seems he also had several jealous hubbies back in their old burg where he was KOS if they ever saw him again. That really didn't surprise me, to be honest. Not with all the shit that I'd figured out about him over this last week.
I couldn't blame Alice, since I was now planning to do the same to Flo while she was in the joint. Fuck it. I'd suffered enough of their disrespect to last several lifetimes. How Roger had subverted Flo wasn't all that much of a mystery when I thought about her raunchy sense of humor over the course of our courtship and marriage. Roger had found fertile ground there for his plan to seduce her by joke. The fuckin' bastard.
Flo tried and tried and tried again to get in touch with me so "we could talk", which was the furthest thing from my mind. I knew enough about how she thought that she seemed to think that once we sat down and talked, it would all be over with and we would get back to where we were.
Not just no, but OH HELL FUCK NO!
It wasn't lost on me that she hadn't physically let him fuck her ... this time. It also wasn't lost on me that if I HAD forgiven their "joke" this time, they would have upped the ante next time. This Divorce was as much for Flo's protection as it was my own sanity.