Copyright© 2008 by aloneagain
Romantic Sex Story: Chapter 2 - She was a Dame and he had just made the biggest mistake of his life.
When snow begins to fall in early winter, a man who has time watches the snow change things outside his windows. For a short while, everything is different and then it becomes something he recalls from another snowfall, and the winter landscape once again is familiar to him. As winter deepens, he looses interest in what is outside and becomes introspective. He recalls pleasant times in his life and remembers times when he felt the sting of emotions that were too strong to forget.
... and then there were some things a man does not want to remember...
Although The Gift Shoppe was not open on Sundays, it still seemed to Timothy that he spent every day, all day, from sunup to sundown, closed up inside. For a man accustomed to being outside in the wind, rain, snow, and sunshine, he disliked the closed feeling inside the store. Every morning, when he unlocked the front door, he left the door open and went to the back room to prop the service door open, just to get a partial exchange of the air inside the small storefront. That simple routine seemed to help, at least until noon, when he could turn over the CLOSED FOR LUNCH sign.
For a man working in a profession where men would not walk across the room if a horse were available to ride, he was accustomed to spending his time in a vehicle or on the back of a horse. Timothy, unable to have a horse in town, had discovered walking would satisfy his need for fresh air, open spaces and stretching room. For lunch, he usually left the store for an hour. If he had no errands to run, his usual lunch was a hamburger or a sandwich he ordered and carried to a nearby park, where he ate and read the newspaper, sitting on a cold concrete bench before a similarly cold concrete table, but at least it was in the fresh air.
However, on this Monday, nothing Timothy did settled his agitation. His memory of the night with Claire roared around inside his head, boiled his guts, and stirred his emotions. Merely the thought of her caused an erection so hard and throbbing, he was bending over, his hands on his knees, as he panted with the intensity of his feelings.
Timothy walked the perimeter of the park three times, tossed his unread newspaper and uneaten lunch into a nearby trashcan, and went back to the store. The regular routine of dusting, arranging, and cleaning, plus a few customers who came into the store in the afternoon kept him busy. On the way home, he stopped at the health club Mark had mentioned. After explaining he was visiting his brother, the manager gave him a visitor's pass, showed him how to use a treadmill, and found a swimsuit for him to wear so he could swim laps.
By the time he got home to learn that Aaron's doctors were going to have a conference sometime Wednesday, Timothy could almost stand up straight and breathe again. He declined to eat the supper Mark prepared, saying he felt under the weather and went to bed, tossing and turning until he fell asleep, exhausted from the swirling snapshots of Claire's face that flitted through his mind.
Tuesday was a little better. Wednesday was better still until he got home and learned the screws holding the metal plate in Aaron's back were working loose. The surgery to repair his broken back originally had been successful. However, surgery was no longer optional, if he ever intended to walk upright without continuous pain the surgery was a necessity, an immediate necessity.
Thursday was a slow day in the store, a day Timothy chose to clean the storeroom of any old packaging not given to the customers, plus a few years worth of accumulated junk. When Mark returned from checking Aaron into the hospital in anticipation of his Friday surgery, the two brothers spent a few hours discussing options to consider keeping someone in the store so Timothy could go back to his ranch.
Mid morning Friday, Mark called to say the surgery was a success and Aaron's recovery should be much faster, but he would still be in a hard plastic cast for another two to three months. However, in a month to six weeks, he could begin to work part of each day if they could figure out a way to get him to the store. Lying down on the back seat of the car was a very uncomfortable way to travel.
Near noon Saturday, Timothy was considering what he wanted for lunch when Claire Prescott walked into The Gift Shoppe. Timothy felt his heart lurch when she looked at him and smiled.
"Hello, Timothy," she barely controlled the tremble in her voice, as she walked toward him.
"Claire," he responded, his voice was gruff and stern, as he kept control of himself with a very tight rein. He was not going to let this woman see how she affected him. He'd had a week and could almost think straight and act without self-disgust when he thought about how fiercely he wanted her and knew she was not the kind of woman who could live the life he must have.
While choosing and paying for a small gift for a friend's birthday, she surprised Timothy by asking about Aaron's surgery and listened attentively as he explained the man's recovery prospects. As they talked about Aaron and a recently announced young woman's wedding, Timothy walked around the counter, intent upon opening the door for her. Claire progressively moved closer to Timothy, until she was standing much closer than was polite or socially acceptable. She allowed her breast to slowly brush against his arm and a few times rested her hand on his arm as they talked.
"I thought perhaps you would call me," Claire looked at Timothy with the most blatantly flirtatious expression Timothy could ever recall a woman directing at him.
He shook his head, "You don't need someone like me in your life."
With honey dripping from each syllable, she responded, "Oh, I think I can handle you, big man." She gave him her best alluring smile, when she asked, "You're not afraid of me, are you?"
Timothy chuckled, but to his own ears, it sounded false. "I have no doubt of that, Claire. We're just very different people. I'm rough, old-fashioned, and not very domesticated."
As her hand brushed from his shoulder down to his elbow, she responded, "I might like a little savagery in a man. It would be interesting."
"Claire, you're a tempting, beautiful woman. I'm sure there is a long line of men just waiting for you to grant them an audience. Perhaps you should select one of them as your consort."
As she turned to leave the store, Claire stopped and asked, "May I ... may I take you to lunch?" She voiced her question and lifted her chin, refusing to look anywhere but straight into his eyes.
Slowly, Timothy shook his head, never losing eye contact with Claire. "I don't think that's a good idea. Maybe we need to forget what happened the other night."
"Can you forget? Have you forgotten, Timothy?" She challenged him.
"No," he answered honestly. "But I will. I'm not what you need and you can't live the life I must have."
"Why Timothy Burleson, I do believe, you are a snob."
"No, Claire. There are no comforts where I live, no housekeepers, no beauty parlors, and no country clubs. People are sturdy, self-sufficient. They work hard for the things they want and the independence they need."
"I'm a wealthy woman. You needn't work. You would be free to pursue whatever you like." As soon as she said the words, she saw the look on his face and realized her error.
"I don't think so Claire. You should find someone more suited to the kind of life you have. I'll go back to my land, my men, and my cattle. They don't expect more from me than I can give."
"I'd like a little of your time, Timothy. I'll see you later, after you close the shop."
Timothy shook his head, not bothering to answer her. She was going to do what she wanted. It didn't mean he had to obey her command to kneel and worship at her feet.
... some memories are pleasant and others just sit in the mind, refusing to leave and refusing to be resolved...
During his weeks of living with Mark and Aaron, Timothy had cleaned up the poorly cared for front yard and flower beds and had begun to do something about many years of neglect in the rear yard. After a light supper, Mark went to the hospital, planning to watch a televised awards program with Aaron, and Timothy was already at work, attacking a badly overgrown corner of the back yard. All week he had spent an hour or two pulling up plants, cutting low hanging limbs off trees, and digging up the remaining roots, when he looked up and saw Claire Prescott standing a few feet behind him.
As Timothy stood, one forearm propped on the handle of the shovel, Claire walked half way around him and then returned to her stance behind him, before she spoke. "It looks like you've done a lot of work on this badly overgrown yard. Not that I don't appreciate it, but I suspect you've chosen to do yard work instead of coming see me tonight?"
"You appreciate it?" Timothy asked his question as if he didn't understand what she meant, although he was beginning to suspect he did.
With a nonchalant wave of her hand toward the rest of the neighborhood, Claire said, "Oh yes, I own this house and a number of others like it. Though, of course someone manages them for me."
Timothy nodded once, "Ah, I see."
"So, you didn't plan to come see me tonight?"
"No, Claire, I did not plan to come see you tonight, or for that matter, any other night." Without giving any more attention to her, he returned to his task, stomped on one side of the shovel to drive it into the dry soil, lifting a shovel full of dried sandy soil, turning it over then stooping to pull several roots out of the dirt. As he tossed the roots into the trash pile, he noticed Claire had moved to sit in one of the lawn chairs on the patio at the back of the house. It was all right with him. If she wanted to sit and watch a man work and sweat, he wasn't going to let it bother him. After he had turned over another ten shovels full of dirt, Claire had either moved out of his line of sight or left the back yard.
... yet the worst memories were those where he did not act like a man, or he hurt a woman and did not seek her forgiveness...
Within a few weeks, Timothy felt comfortable that he had managed his lust for Claire Prescott. If he had not managed it, he had at least reduced it to a few thoughts of her in the daytime. Oh, and of course, there was the late night dream when he would awaken with a throbbing erection caused by memories of the way her skin felt under his fingers, her breast felt in his hand, or the taste of her kiss felt on his tongue.
He did not recognize the woman who walked into the store one afternoon. She looked vaguely familiar, but Timothy had been in town for almost three months and had seen a number of people enough times to know some of them by name and many by sight.
He greeted the customer who was looking through a selection of small crystal and china boxes, some with hinged lids, "Good afternoon, ma'am. How can I help you today?"
She turned and greeted Timothy, "Oh, I like these, I was thinking ... I believe I recognize you. Didn't you help Claire Prescott the night her shoe broke?"
"Yes ma'am, I did."
The woman giggled and seemed a little embarrassed, "You're such a strong man. You picked her up as if she didn't weigh anything and carried her to a bench. I'm Marie Taylor. I believe she said you drove her home that night, while the rest of us went on to a party. That was so nice of you."
Nodding as Marie spoke, Timothy responded, "Yes, I did take her home. She was a little shaky. Were you looking for something for yourself, or are you shopping for a gift?"
"Oh," Marie turned back to the small crystal boxes. "I thought Claire might like one of these. Saturday is her birthday."
"Or, perhaps you can tell me," she looked around the store for a moment, "Is there something in here she's looked at or admired?"