Sex Story: Chapter 9 - I'm Winter Jennings, 32, former police officer, current private detective. A now-single mother with a horny son, a friendly-enough ex. My father is about to retire as a respected homicide captain here in Kansas City, Missouri. My work is usually routine, mostly computer-driven. Except when it isn't. Revenge porn, a cult, a wife beater, insurance scams, pimps. A particularly nasty psychiatrist. On a personal front, everyone who knows me well, knows I like sex. A lot.
Our honeymoon in Kiev wasn’t a traditional one. For one thing, my son and his girlfriend were with us. Along with Vanessa’s mother and grandmother. While Vanessa and I had great sex on the trip, we weren’t ravenous virgins. Nor nervous virgins. Nor virgins.
Kiev is an amazing city. Even for Europe. It’s around three million or so. A lot of business, industry, history, educational institutions. But for our honeymoon tribe, it was food and culture.
Far older than any American city, it throbs with history. But we were more interested in its present. The people living here, working here, eating here.
Sasha seemed invigorated hearing so many folks speaking her native tongue. She recognized some landmark buildings, but everything else had disappeared from her childhood memories. Understandably so, she hadn’t been back in 50 years.
One of our first stops was to pay respect to Sasha’s mother, Veronika. A small cemetery, but well tended. A small grave marker for a woman strong enough to realize that selling her daughter to an American pedophile was in fact the little girl’s best chance for a better life. A better life far from Veronika’s own hopeless existence.
Sasha gained two treasures from that unholy alliance. That Milwaukee businessman had adopted her, thus allowing Sasha to obtain her American citizenship. And, no matter what else, Mr. Milwaukee had given Sasha a baby, her precious Marina.
We left Sasha alone for a few minutes to take her time and to think her own thoughts. Marina and Vanessa had been to the graveside before -- every trip to Kiev.
Vanessa, even though she was in the hospitality business and ran a splendid restaurant enterprise, let her mother take the lead in ferreting out places to dine. Marina studied passersby, women working in shops, mothers with children. She would ask for restaurant recommendations, listen carefully, and we would end up going to about one in ten of the suggested destinations.
We didn’t go to tourist cafes, we left the beaten track. Neighborhoods that didn’t look safe, let alone clean. No cameras, no college backpacks. But a lot of good food, much of it hearty.
Walker, the only male in our honeymoon party, had obsessed over the trip details. Researched the fuck out of Kiev. Had day to day itineraries for all of us. The first time Marina led us to an industrial area so far off the beaten track that Google Maps had only a vague, and misinformed, notion of the area, Walker forgot about all of his planning.
Because Phillip had comped our airfare, we splurged on the Opera Hotel. A fairly new, sort of boutique-style hotel in a building over 100 years old. Because the newlyweds and the kids would be having sex, we got three rooms. Adjacency wasn’t available, but all three were on the same floor. We’d just have to rough it.
I was pleased, and so was Vanessa, that Marina hooked up with three different men. Two in their 50s, both from Greece. One English lad in his early 20s.
Because Marina is so stunning, this wouldn’t have been a surprise. But in Kiev there are more stunning women than I’ve seen anywhere. Including London and New York. Back in my college days when I was evaluating other females as my rivals.
Sasha met one scamp, a debonaire gent about 20 years younger. He was from Odessa and definitely on the hustle. Sasha quickly disabused him of the notion that she was wealthy, even though she was at the Opera.
He stuck around anyway, although his eye was constantly roving, looking for the next prospect. Vanessa, grinning, told Walker and Mindy, “GrandmaMA doesn’t mind, she’s only using him for sex.”
I found it interesting that Sasha didn’t seem to pay that much attention to Vanessa and me. Could it be that she’d decided to trust me with her only grandchild? Or maybe it was because she had simply relaxed into the language of her own childhood.
Marina and Vanessa were so watchful, so supportive of Sasha. They wanted her first return to her homeland to be a positive experience.
It was an educational trip for the kids.
For me, it was the best honeymoon I’d had. Or the better of the two. I felt, sensed, believed, that our marriage would be the same.
Back home, back at work, back at school, life in the Wrigley found its new balance now that Vanessa and I were married. She had kept her loft above BEAR, she worked such long hours that it made sense to bunk in when she was wiped out.
But more nights than not, she came home to Walker and me.
On those BEAR nights she always called Walker to let him know she wouldn’t be home. And to tell him to take care of me. That sometimes involved snuggling in my bed for the night. But usually didn’t. Vanessa and I didn’t try to figure out the Walker Formula, just left it up to him.
But when he did deign to sleep with his mother, I jacked him off. Every time, no more waiting for him to make the first move. Walker didn’t seem to have any objections.
As for getting myself off, it wasn’t that often. It depended on the day I’d had, the mood I was in, what was waiting for me the next morning. But when I felt that delicious dampness, I didn’t hesitate. I’ve been blessed, ever since Peggy Rawlings first seduced me, with a hair trigger.
And, on those Walker nights, I didn’t usually limit myself to one orgasm. I don’t know if Mindy can multi, Walker doesn’t talk about her sexually. He’d better not. But now he does know I can. And do.
Of course weekends, when Mindy was here, well the kids were inseparable. As they should be.
Walker had shot up again, he was now over six feet, taller than his father. Which pleased me irrationally. And delighted Vanessa as she and Mindy took him clothes shopping.
Our nighttime ritual was the same, Vanessa and I hugged Mindy and then tongue-kissed Walker. The first time I used my tongue with him, it had happened automatically, without a conscious thought on my part.
In the middle of the kiss I realized, startled, what I was doing. My conscious mind knew better to jerk back. It would confuse, perhaps bother my son. I went through a period where I didn’t use my tongue except for a brief coda at the end of the embrace.
Then, as I told Peggy, “Fuck it. I love him. A French Kiss is an expression of affection. Yeah, it’s probably inappropriate in Walker’s case. Too intimate. But fuck it.”
Peggy has always encouraged any and all things sexual and said, merely, “Go for it.”
Vanessa noticed, it would have been difficult not to, and she soon was following suit. When Mindy wasn’t home, we both didn’t mind taking a little longer and getting Walker erect.
Hey, I never joined the PTA.
Once, early on in the budding romance between Vanessa and me, I asked her, “Honey, do you want me to try to track down that Milwaukee guy?”
The pedophile who had purchased, and adopted, little Sasha Andrushchenko. And later sold her, or gave her, to a whorehouse madam. Perhaps in Chicago.
Vanessa was surprised, then thoughtful. “I wonder if he could still be alive. He’d have to be in his 80s or 90s. GrandmaMA was never sure about his age.”
“How about I put out some light feelers? Daddy will know someone in Milwaukee who could point me in the right direction.”
“Okay. Thank you. I won’t say anything to GrandmaMA. Nor Marina. Not until we know. And maybe not then.”
“It’s better to know, Vanessa.”
She smiled at me, a little sadly, “That is why I love you, tough girl.” The first time she’d told me that.
Before talking with Daddy, I accessed the Wisconsin Adoption Records Search Program. Then I put Cathy Austin on it, “Use Carolyn, she should be able to hack into the state’s Department of Children and Family files.”
Cathy grinned, “You don’t want to overburden the Wisconsin bureaucracy with a lot of paperwork.”
“We may have to go that route, but it’ll be quicker if we bypass them. Sasha Andrushchenko was born in Kiev in 1957, later adopted. She had to have been living with this asshole pedophile for two years to gain citizenship.”
I thought about the timing, “Sasha is a US citizen. So she must have been with Mr. Milwaukee longer than she thought. At least two years before he sold her to the whorehouse.”
“Why is her name still Andrushchenko? If he adopted her, wouldn’t she take his name?”
“Maybe he didn’t want that kind of domestic paper trail. In Ukraine, well Russia at the time, Sasha heard him tell her mother about the bribes he had to pay.”
We both thought about the challenge. I said, “Or maybe Sasha is right about the timing. Maybe that whorehouse madam initiated the paperwork for Sasha.”
“More complicated to trace.”
“I know. Assume for now that the brothel was in Chicago. That could narrow the paper chase down. But first I’ll check on the date of her papers, that should tell us.”
Parallel to Cathy’s digital efforts, I went old school. Daddy. He gave me a Madison number to call, “Artie Kowlinski. Good guy. Smart. I met him at an FBI profiling session.”
Mr. Kowlinski remembered Daddy. Most people on both sides of the law do.
“I’m retired now, hon, but I still know a few people. How is Dave, anyway? Still taking kickbacks?”
“As many as he can grab. He wants to retire to a golf course.”
Artie snorted. Daddy will never retire.
Rebecca Montgomery called me, concern but not panic in her voice, “Mindy thinks she saw the leader of that cult. In the parking lot.”
The Creed of the Brethren. The Leader, Viola Cummings, an alias. Back in Kansas City.
“Where are you, Rebecca?”
“Bristol Seafood. The one in Leawood.”
It was 5:30 in the evening. “Have you ordered yet?”
“No, we just got here. Mindy saw this ... bitch in a white van. She’s pretty sure.”
“Okay. Good. Go ahead and order something, it’ll look suspicious if you leave right away. Let’s see ... I’ll call Sergeant Finch, she knows the players and she can organize something quickly.”
“What if they come in here?”
“They won’t, they don’t want a public scene. If they do, scream and call 911. But they won’t.”
“Why don’t I call the Leawood police? Or the Highway Patrol. Somebody close by.”
“Because we want her arrested in Missouri. That’s where they tried to brainwash Mindy. Now don’t worry, Vanessa has already called Bear, he’s on his way to pick me up. We’ll come in the back of the Bristol, be there before you leave. Stay put.”
Bear was waiting in his souped up Chrysler by the time I was downstairs. He made good time out to West 119th Street. On those fucking freeways that I hate. We came in through the kitchen, acting so official that no one said anything. Although no one usually says anything to Bear.
We sat at a table for four, Rebecca and Mindy looking relieved. Rebecca resolute, Mindy a little nervous. Bear helped himself to Rebecca’s shrimp cocktail. I scored one of Mindy’s oysters on the half shell.
I said, “Leave around 6:30, a little before, a little after, whatever works. Don’t go on the freeways, take surface streets to 75th and head for State Line. Bear and I’ll be behind the van.”
“Okay. Then what?”
“Sergeant Finch has a team pulled together. They’re outside now. Don’t look for them, they’ll follow you and the van. Rebecca, you drive east on 75th, past Ward Parkway and Wornal. Do you know the Aldi on your right?”
“No, but I can find it.”
Mindy said, “I know where it is.”
“Good. Just park in the lot and go into the store. The police will take care of Cummings and whoever else is with her.”
“Then you and Mindy and Phillip talk. Talk with your attorney. Decide if you want to press charges. You don’t have to. But for now focus just on driving safely. The police will take care of everything else.”
I looked at Mindy, “I’ll call you once you’re in the car. And stay on the line the entire time. I’ll let you and Rebecca know what’s going on minute by minute.”
“Thank you.” She patted Bear’s arm and smiled, “And thank you too, Bear. I already feel safer.”
Rebecca patted his other arm, “We’ll live to dance another tango.”
Bear and I parked with the white van in sight. Even with his binoculars I couldn’t tell for sure that it was Viola. Or whatever name she was using these days.
It was like a slow-motion police chase. Not boring exactly because Mindy and Rebecca were involved. But it was probably the easiest collar Sergeant Finch had made in years. Viola and the boy who had segregated Mindy from her two girlfriends at the Oak Park Mall were sitting in the van, merely watching as Rebecca and Mindy walked into the grocery store.
Sergeant Finch nodded and two uniformed officers opened the van’s driver’s door and passenger door simultaneously. I learned later that Viola pissed herself.
I had taken Mindy away from the Creed and now the leader was busted. The cult that couldn’t shoot straight.
Back from Kiev, taller now than Vanessa, Walker seemed to have gained more confidence. On the days she came home to meet him between BEAR’s lunch and dinner services, he took Vanessa on neighborhood walks all over the Crossroads. Just as he had with Mindy, back in those early post-Creed days.
Walker always invited me to join them, but I rarely did. Usually I was still at work. But I understood how he enjoyed showing Vanessa off, introducing her to the ever-growing number of people he knew. Hell, I enjoyed showing her off.
They made a striking couple. Well, anyone with Vanessa would fall into that category. But Walker was a good looking boy, tall and slender, blonde and blue eyed. He had gotten over most of his shyness, lost some of that awkward schoolboy gait.
It was good for Vanessa to bond with him. She didn’t feel like his mother, probably never would. Probably never should. But she let him know he was loved. Fiercely loved.
She agreed, immediately and with a giggle, to pose for him just as I had when Peggy shot me. I pretended concern for her, “Vanessa, Walk will be jacking off to you. A lot.”
“I should hope. Can I watch?”
I shook my head in mock despair at the depravity now residing in our home.
Once we were engaged, I sat Vanessa down with Walker. She and I over our financials. Which were in decent shape. She was impressed with how much Walker and I had in a sort of unofficial escrow in a joint account with Gene Austin. Almost $35,000 earmarked to buy this loft.
We had, thanks to the Alzheimer’s investment and a couple of smaller ones, $101,700 available. Plus we had over $18,000 in our savings account. Money put aside from our living expenses when a significant insurance check arrived.
I’m not frugal, I love shopping, going out on the town. But I’m careful.
Vanessa was in better shape than I was. Bear didn’t pay her that much, $78,000 plus an occasional bonus when BEAR had a spectacular year. But she had lived rent free upstairs. And her meals were free there as well.
She and Bear were the only employees with decent health care insurance. The food industry, unless you’re mega, is a low margin business.
Vanessa shyly pointed to her financials. She had $182,000 in savings.
I was impressed.
Before we were married, I insisted she sign the papers to own half our loft. My cash flow was uneven, but it averaged higher than Vanessa’s. So she would pay $1500 of the monthly rent / escrow nut which was $5200.
That would give me some breathing room and, we hoped, continue to let both of us add to our savings and investments.
Because she insisted, she transferred $150,000 of her own savings into what was now our mutual investment fund.
All of this heady money stuff was carried out with the advice and consent of my Exchange Building neighbor and financial advisor, Gertie Oppenheimer. Who advised us not to be too eager to buy our Wrigley loft as quickly as we could.
“Don’t put all your money in one basket. It looks like a good long term investment, but keep your options open. Vanessa, have you looked into buying that Broadway loft above BEAR?”
Vanessa was as startled as I was. Neither of us had considered it.
Vanessa said, “Well, Bear owns the building.”
Gertie had met Bear several times when he came to visit my office. And had danced with him at our wedding. So far as I could recall, Bear had danced with every female there.
Gertie said, “It’s an interesting stretch of Broadway, along there. Some money is going into the Uptown. And I hear more might be on the way for some other buildings. I’ll talk with Bear about it. See if he has any plans for the upstairs. Since it’s part of your compensation, he isn’t generating any revenue from an entire floor. If you kids buy it, it’s money in his pocket.”
Somehow Gertie had a way of making things sound simple.
“If you do buy it ... it’ll be like a co-op back home.” She’s from New York.
Vanessa said, “A co-op?”
“Yeah, you’d own a percentage of the building’s total square feet, not the actual loft itself.”
Vanessa and I both frowned. Even though I had lived in New York, I hadn’t paid much attention to real estate. Just enough to know I couldn’t afford to live there on my own.
Gertie said, “You guys would be shareholders in Bear’s building. With a lease to occupy the loft.”
We left it that she’d talk with Bear.
Vanessa could sleep late because she didn’t usually go in to work until 10 or 10:30. But she likes to get up with Walker and me. We don’t have a formal process, she wakes him or I do, whatever’s handy for us that particular morning.
She gets a kick out of his morning wood. It’s not every morning, but more often than not. As with me, Walker has to actually be standing beside his bed before Vanessa leaves his room.
She giggled, “He’s not even aware of it.” Erection.
“No, he sleeps so soundly, it’s his age. Mindy too.”
After a Town Topic breakfast, Walker has no compunction about accepting a public hug from the goddess. She ignores the morning hands on her butt. She and I are like that, we let the little things slide.
And, over the weeks, having Vanessa to hug goodbye somehow eased the stigma of a mom hug. That and he likes my boobs.
Vanessa, since she’s moved in with us, usually comes home to meet Walker when school lets out. She’s between lunch and dinner services and Bear lets her keep her own hours. He should, she runs the joint for him.
Even though she married me, and officially adopted Walker, he is still pinching himself that she actually lives with us. Can’t blame him. Vanessa’s beauty is ... ethereal.
And I have to admit that I still get a kick out of being seen with her. I’m two and a half inches shorter than her 5’ 10” but I wear heels and she usually doesn’t. That’s just another small kindness on Vanessa’s part. She could tower over me in heels and attract even more attention than she already does.
In any case the Crossroads impact of two tall, leggy girls, Vanessa’s beauty any my attractive sexiness ... well, we make a pretty compelling eyeful. If I do say so myself. And I do.
As much as he loves being out and about with Vanessa and me, I’m pretty sure Walker’s favorite time is his bedtime. Vanessa and I go in his room around 11 for his goodnight kiss.
Vanessa first. She bends down and our slender son reaches up from his bed to embrace her. The kiss is long, wet, and intimate. Walker no longer hides his erection under a sheet. Once he figured out it not only didn’t bother his new mother, she got a kick out of seeing it throbbing away, it was bye-bye cover sheet.