We're the Fowlers: Dana and Gordon. Common age thirty-one. Married right out of high school: that makes thirteen years ago as of the first of next month. Dana's a beautician, learned the trade on the job working for Julia's Styles, a shop catering mostly to ladies with blue hair. I'm a short haul truck driver for Drummond Trucking, freight haulers. I'm never gone more than one day in a row, and most times home by five or six every night.
Maybe this would be a good place to describe us a little, physically that is; I mean before we get into the story per se. Dana's slender; tall, at five-eight; and pretty. Me? I'm a shade under five-seven; stocky, at one-seventy-five; hard bodied and strong—I bench 315 for reps. Did a little silver and golden gloves when I was younger. Did pretty good too, made it regional finals when I was seventeen.
At any rate, lookswise, and otherwise, Dana's way out of my league; but none of that's ever been an issue; well, until lately. Okay, and sex...
Sex between Dana and me has been good ever since we were seniors in high schools. I got her cherry, and she got mine the night of homecoming. But sex between us now is more than problematical, and I do mean more than! Oh and we have one daughter, Jessica, my pride and joy.
"I love you, Gordie, and no one else. Always have always will. But..." she'd started.
"But, what, Dana? What's all of this about? Why did you come down here today?" I said.
She'd called my cell a couple of hours earlier and had made a date with me for lunch at one of the stops I was making that today. We were seated in a not too tacky café just outside of town. Burgers downed, and the iced teas refilled she'd morphed from pensive, and mostly uncommunicative in any real sense, to nervous and anxious.
"Gordie, I have a lover. I needed to tell you. I don't want you finding out the wrong way, and so I made the decision to out myself and put it out there for the two of us to talk about," she said.
I suppose I hadn't really heard her, or having heard, her words had not registered with me, with my conscious mind. "Huh?"
"I have a lover, Gordie. He's a nice guy. But, just a part time thing. You know on the side. No threat to us, no threat at all. But, that said, I know you may see things differently than they in fact are. Anyway, I had to tell you," she said.
I was finally coming to grips with the meaning of her words. I was suddenly sick to my stomach. "No threat to us? What does that mean?" I said. She seemed to relax at hearing my words—that is—my tone which an outside observer might have described as matter-of-fact. I wasn't raving. I figured that had been the reason she wanted to out herself in a public place instead of at the house: she was afraid I might lose it. Well, and while that was not an impossibility; I probably wouldn't be doing that being the kind of person I thought myself to be.
"It means that what he and I do, in the best of all possible worlds, will not have any effect on you and me at all. I do not want a divorce. And, I repeat, I love you, not him. And, I am here to beg you to accept my proposal," she said.
"Proposal?" I said. I was pretty sure my less than boisterous reaction to her pronouncement was making an impact; I just wasn't sure what kind.
"Yes. After we leave here today, I am hoping that things between us will still be good. And, while I know it's going to be impossible for you to forget what I've told you; that's kind of what I am hoping you will try to do. Or, if not forget, which as I say I know would be hard, at least ignore what I've told you. I need you to consider what I said today as my being honest and up front with you and not a slap in your face, at least not that," she said.
I found myself feeling very calm almost detached from what she was saying, roiling stomach or no. The love of my life, my high school sweetheart had betrayed me. The mother of our thirteen year-old daughter, Jessica, was risking it all to fuck some other man—how did she say it—on the side. Calm, yes, I was calm, weirdly so at least outwardly.
I'd figure out what I was going to do sooner or later, but for the moment, I needed solitude.
"I see," I said. "Well, okay, I guess we'll be talking some more later." I could feel my voice beginning to crack, but I was still holding it together. "But, before you ask, I don't know what I am going to do right at the moment," I said. And, the truth was that I didn't. I loved her, and I loved our daughter; and whatever I decided to do would have to take into account those two very cogent realities.
"Okay, honey. Just please consider that I do love you, and I am praying that we can make it through this," she said. She rose to go. No kiss, no hug, she just rose to go; and then she was gone. And I was left to the rest of my day and my thoughts.
"How did he take it?" said Hiram Rogers.
"Honestly, I'm not sure. He didn't lose it like you thought he might. He just said that we'd be talking later," said Dana. "But, I made one big ass mistake, I just walked out. I didn't kiss him or hug him or anything. I guess I was just trying to retreat as fast as I could before he did lose it."
"Really? I'm surprised. Most husbands would either cry in their beer or lose it big time. But, you say he was just kind of matter-of-fact. You think he might be playing on the side himself? I mean..." he started. She gave him a look.
"What? Uh—no. Not my Gordie, not even," she said. He nodded, but looked dubious.
"I don't know. The way you say he reacted just doesn't seem normal to me," said Hiram.
"Well, if there is one thing I'm sure of is that Gordon Fowler would never cheat on me," she said. The hypocrisy of her words didn't seem to register with either of them.
"Whatever, I think it's time we did our thing," he said, smiling. "And, you and I will be talking later too." He began to strip. She matched him garment for garment.
Naked he moved to her and began exploring her body with his hands. She giggled as his fingers invaded the cleft of her buttocks and poked obscenely at the sphincter of her anus.
"Looking for some candy to go with your whipped cream," she mocked.
"Absolutely," he said. Pulling his fingers from her behind, he licked them clean. "Nice." She smiled her appreciation.
"Hmm, my turn," she said. She went to her knees and took hold of his eight inch penis. Stroking it a few times, she leaned in and let it slip between her lips. She began sucking on it. He jerked spasmodically as the sensation rocked his sexual world. Ready, he pulled her up, and turned her around. She leaned over the seat of the chair in front of her and spread her legs wide for him.
He poked at her pussy and gained an almost immediate lodgement. He began seesawing in and out of her. She grunted and moaned and dribbled spit down her cheeks as he took her. As usual he was able to last some minutes: long enough for her to stiffen announcing the arrival of another shattering climax, the main reason she was cheating on her husband. Her Gordon could never give her what her Hiram did. Guilt? Yes. If she had to choose, and she hoped she never would: Gordon Fowler was way better than Hiram in every other way but in bed. The climaxes that her Hiram gave her were irreplaceable. God how she feared the conversation she would be having with her husband just a few hours hence.
"No, Jimmy, my dad would never allow me to date a senior in high school; so just eat your heart out," giggled Jessica Fowler. "Just forget it."
"Okay, Jess, but I like you a lot even if I am four years older than you. And, I'd have no problem meeting your dad and asking his permission myself," said James Colby.
She watched the captain of the Central High football team walk off and away from her. Too bad, she thought, he's hot.
I was done early, but decided not to go directly home. I needed a drink. I needed it real bad. The Hard Hat, my favorite watering hole, was but fifteen minutes from the house, and the bartender Christina Mosely loved me and took care of all of my alcoholic needs.
I was hardly even seated before my favorite brand of Tennessee refreshment was in front of me. "Thanks, girl, I figure to need a few of these before the night is over," I said. She looked me askance. I knew she'd be probing for more info before too long.
I sat there sipping my drink and trying to figure how I was going to handle the disaster of my domestic situation. I knew I'd have to go home sooner or later. But, what then? What should I do or say to her when I did. And what about my junior high school daughter. Did she know? Should she know if she didn't already? Would she take her mother's side or mine? Mine I decided, at least in the short run.
And, who the hell was she fucking. It just occurred to me that I had asked almost no questions about her liaisons. I would be. But, when I did, would she be forthcoming or try to keep me in the dark? I had never hurt her or anyone outside of the ring, and that had been when I was a kid. I was still in shape working out as I did four days a week at Maximo's gym. Dana knew I could fight, but she'd never actually seen me. She had seen my trophies; they were at my parents' house upstate. But, I'm not sure she actually knew what I could do. Thinking about it, though, that might have been another reason that she outted herself: to keep her lover from being beat like a cur dog. But, then again, who really knew? I sure didn't.
"So, hot shot, you have that look. Wifey giving you trouble?" said Tina.
"You could say that. She informed me today that she loved the hell outta me, but that she'd taken a lover on the side, and hoped I didn't mind," I said.
"You're fucking with me," said Tina—and yes everybody called her Tina; she'd always preferred it to her given name.
"No, no I'm not. That is exactly what she hit me with. So, now I have to figure what I'm going to do," I said.
"Well, how about divorcing her and marrying me?" said Tina.
"Yeah, like you'd marry me even if I did divorce her," I said.
"You think I'm pretty, right?" she said.
"Well, of course. You're stunning. Way out of my league. But, then, almost all the girls are," I said, meaning it.
"You are a helluva nice guy, Gordon. Super-duper handsome, no, but not too bad. A woman like me could easily fix most of your problems.
"What's your dick size?" she said. She wasn't smiling.
"Huh? What? Jesus, Tina, is nothing sacred with you?" I said.
"Not much," she said.
"Six-inches," I said, "maybe a trace over that. Not exactly imposing." She smiled, and left to fill an order at the other end of the bar. I went back to sipping my drink.
She was back in what was likely about a minute and a half.
"Okay, your wifey is fucking around on you. Leaving aside answering my question as to whether or not you'd marry me after you divorced her. There is another option," she said.
"Instead of going home tonight, shack up with me. Fuck me good and proper and then go home in the morning with your ego mended," she said.
"Huh? Are you serious?" I said.
"As a heart attack," she said. I looked at her, stared at her, and made a decision.
"Yes," I said. "Yes, indeed."
My cell began going off at around 6:30. It was her right enough. I turned it off and settled in to wait for Tina to get off that would be at 9:00PM.
We walked to her place: it was just around the corner from the bar. I'd already had three JDs, and had cut myself off after that in view of the evening's goal: a very pretty red head's pussy.
"Convenient," I said. After the three minute walk. She smiled.
"I'm going to change. You get comfortable," she said. I nodded my obedience.
I just walked around the front area, peaked into the kitchen, and waited.
"Checking me out?" she said, noticing my noticing her place.
"No, just killing time," I said. "Oh, and you are absolutely stunning."
"Well, thank you," she said. She was stark naked and I was drooling. "You can strip now unless you want to wait for later."
I didn't even answer her. I just began shedding clothes while making every effort to keep my eye on her shaved pubes. Naked, I went to her and fell to my knees.
"Way out of my league," I said, worshipping her. I leaned in and kissed her secret place. She took hold of the back of my head and pulled me in tight against her pussy. I began licking and sucking her as I had never licked and sucked a woman before, not even my wife. This was one very hot babe. She shuddered and pushed me away. She lay down on the floor and spread her legs for me. Still on my knees, I shuttled over to her and stared.
"Jesus, you're a beautiful woman," I said.
"Of course," she said. "And if you divorce your whore, you can have me all to yourself for the rest of our lives." I just nodded. I wasn't quite sure why a woman like her, so good looking, and younger than me, was so interested in a joe-average like me, but that was a question to be answered another day.
I climbed on top of her and began poking to gain entry. She grabbed my cock and guided it to where it needed to go. I pushed and pulled for a few moments and then, lodged in, I drilled her.
"Uhg!" she blurted.
I began doing her. "That's it, big boy, fuck me. And, do a good job of it."
I did my level best to last as long as I could. Eleven minutes later she twitched and moaned and I emptied myself into her. I rolled off to the side breathing hard.
"Not bad," she said. "Yes, I think you'll do."
"Glad you liked it," I said.
It was a Wednesday night. I had to work the next day. I had to go home to get clothes. I had planned to stay the night with Tina, and I would next time—if there was to be a next time. But, on this night I needed to get home and face a no doubt irate wife. Tina understood.
After thanking her profusely for saving my sanity and maybe my heart, I headed on home. Oh, and we'd made a date for the following Friday night: she had a 9:00 o'clocker that night, but Saturday she closed.
It was after midnight. The house was dark except for the usual night light in the kitchen.
She was sitting in the living room on the couch. "Okay, Gordon, is this some kind of statement," she said. Well, the best defense is a good offense.
"Hmm, I guess you could make a case for that, Dana. But, as to that, I'm not really sure," I said.
"Look, I outted myself to try and spare us all of the drama that would have to follow if I hadn't," she said. "Please just deal with it, okay?" Her words darkened my mood.
"Hmm, drama. Yes, deal with it. Yes, I guess this, situation, is kind of dramatic isn't it. Of course if you were an honest and faithful wife, there wouldn't be any drama," I said.
"Gordie, I told you those things to be honest with you; to make it so that you and I could be even better than we have been. Well, that was my goal," she said.
"Okay. But, I have a couple of questions for you. Answer me honestly, give me the straight skinny, and I'll do the same," I said. Stonewall me, and we may as well just go to bed and forget everything—and I do mean including us."
"Gordie! You're not thinking of doing anything stupid are you?" she said.
"I don't know. What qualifies as being stupid from your point of view," I said.
"Question, Dana, why?" I said. She sagged back into the couch.
"He's a good lover. Really, the best I ever had," she said. I snickered.
"I suppose I'm supposed to conclude that that includes me? Me, mister inadequate. You sure no how to hurt a guy," I said. She looked shaken.
"Gordie, for God's sake I didn't mean to put you down, not even. You're good too. Okay. I mean it," she said.
"Just not good enough to lure you away from super dick, right Dana? Never mind. Okay, I can't fault your honesty—so far."
"Who is it?" I said.
"His name doesn't matter, Gordie. Really," she said.
"It does to me. Who is it? Tell me or were done, and then it really won't matter," I said. She stood and started pacing back and forth.
"Gordie, you really don't want to know. Drop it. Let it be," she said. I just stared at her. She started to head for the stairs. I followed her.
Inside the room, she headed for the bathroom and I headed for the closet. I was already packing the first of two suitcases that I'd retrieved, when she emerged in her nightgown.
"What are you doing?" she said.
"Leaving you," I said.
"What!" she all but screamed. "What about Jessica? What about our thirteen years together? What about our future plans?"
"All in the shitter. I guess the lawyers will be hashing out the custody issues. I do need to see and be around my baby. But, you and I? We're done. Your secret, his name, is apparently worth more to you than our marriage. That's unacceptable," I said. I continued to pack.
"Would you stay and try to get over this—challenge—if I gave up his name?" she said. I stopped, and looked at her.
"Unless it's my dad or brother or other close relative, I might be willing to make the effort or come to some kind of compromise," I said. She paced back and forth trying, I was sure, to decide if the risk was worth the possible blowback. She stopped and nodded.
"Okay. It's Hiram Rogers," she said. I know my face darkened. I started to sputter.
"My-my-my best friend?" I said. "My from-my-childhood best fucking friend!" I tried to calm down. It was the fucking cliché of cliché's.
"Yes, I said I might be willing to try. Okay, and I am. But, please let him know that he and I are quits. Oh, and he's never to come around here again. Not ever. Fuck him, do whatever you want to with him, but I never want to hear his name or see his face again. I don't want to end up in jail for beating him to death," I said.
"Gordon, he and I..."
"Just not around here. Okay?" I said. she nodded. "It's time to take your nee'r-do-well husband to bed. Let's go."
We were undressing. "Can I ask you a question, Gordon?" I shrugged. I kinda figured I knew what she was going to ask. I was right.
"Where were you tonight?" she said.
"At the Hard Hat," I said. She nodded.
I rolled over to my side of the bed. The scene was tense. But, after a short time she chanced it: she reached for my cock. I let her. After some few minutes I surprised to discover, and so was she, that I wasn't hard. She couldn't turn me on.
"Just don't feel like it, Dana. I guess, you put a pretty good hit on the old ego," I said. That was true of course. What was also true was the simple fact that I had come three times earlier in the evening.
I could hear her sniffling. "I'm sorry my husband. I thought that I was doing the right thing. I guess I was wrong." She rolled over and went to sleep. Well, I assume that that was the case.
"Jesus, you told him!" he said.
"Hiram, yes, I had to. He was packing to leave me. I had to. And what is almost worse than that was when I tried to make it up to him by fucking his eyes out, he couldn't get it up for me. That has never, I mean never happened before!"
"Well, that sure as hell puts an end to him and me," he said. "I guess it was inevitable."
"Yes, I'm afraid so. You're persona non-grata around the house now. He told me to tell you that," said Dana.
"He still doesn't know the biggee, right?" he said. "I mean about Jessica's..."
"No. And he must never," she said.
"I guess it's a damn good thing the two of them look a lot alike," he said. She shivered.
"Yes, he'd kill me, and him, if he knew," she said.
"On another point, Does he know how long? I mean us?"
"No. And, he didn't ask. If he had, I'm not sure I could have kept it from him. But, he didn't, so for the moment we're okay on that score," she said.
"Thank God! I'm gonna miss our family gatherings, but I guess it couldn't be helped. Sooner or later he'd have caught on, and it might have been even worse," he said.
"Yes for real," she said.
"I just had a bad thought," he said.
"What if, you know, Jessica starts to notice that good 'ole uncle Hiram isn't coming around anymore. It could raise questions..."
"I don't know. I guess we'll just have to wait and deal with that issue if and when it ever comes up," she said. "Jesus, how could I have not thought of that!"
He went pensive. "I'm going to miss us all being one big happy family," he said. She nodded.
"Once the dust settles, we'll try to make amends with him," she said.
"Wouldn't that be something," he said. "I mean if he could be convinced to buy into what we're doing."
The Hard Hat was busy. Tina was running her ass off, and a beautiful ass it was too. I owed that gorgeous ass. She it was that pulled me out of the emotional frying pan at the very least.
"So, got anything for me tonight, cowboy?" she said coming up to me.
"Lots, but for the moment maybe you can help me find a fella name of Jack Daniels," I said.
"I believe he just arrived. I'll see what I can do," she said.
It was Friday night and we had a date for 9:30—an hour to go.
She was wiping down the bar in front of me. "Your wife know where you are?" she said.
"No, and I think she'd kind of pissed at me," I said. "She's home sitting with our daughter. I'm certain she wanted to go out tonight, but my going out first kind of short shanked her," I said. Tina smiled.
"Kind like got your licks in first, huh," she said. "I think I saw your wife once or twice in the past with you. She did look like she might be kinda feisty."
"Yeah, you could say that."
"She making nice. I mean after what she laid on you the other day?" said Tina.
"Yes, she's tried, but believe it or not I couldn't even get it up for her last night. Kind of scary, really," I said. Now, Tina laughed.
"Yeah will I had pretty well drained you if I recall. Anyway, I hope you won't be having any such trouble tonight," she said. "Wonder what she'll be doing with herself since she's obviously not going out with her mister studley."
Her words made me think. Babysitter? We didn't have one that we used with any regularity. Leave Jessica alone till one or the other of us got home. Have her boyfriend over to the house! No, no, she was irresponsible, but not that irresponsible; I was sure of that.
The second night with Tina was more or less a repeat of our first time together. I still couldn't think why she'd settled on me as a possible mate. Her reminders, that I would be well served to marry her, if my marriage did in fact implode, were just too unbelievable to take seriously, but she apparently was serious. There had to be a hundred guys came in to the Hard Hat with more money, were better looking, and probably with bigger dicks than me—so why me? It made no sense. But was I going to kick a gift horse in the mouth? Not on your life! Christina Mosely was primo female stock I was going to ride it as long as she'd let me.
I got in a little after 1:00AM. The place was dark. Well, it should have been.
"So, you finally decided to come home," she said. The sarcasm was palpable.
"And, that would bother you why? Because you didn't put in your bid for the night out before me," I said. And, yes the sarcasm was dripping from my facial orifice as well.
"You could have called," she said. "It wouldn't have killed you."
"Why, you never call me to let me know when you're out fucking your boyfriend—my ex best friend. The way I see it, what's good for you is sure as hell good for me," I said.
"Gordie, Hiram wants you to know he'd like to make things right by you if you'll let him," she said. This was intriguing, laughable, but yes intriguing.
"Really? And, what does he propose? Maybe promise to fuck you less than he has been?"
"No, not exactly. He's of the opinion that if we were include you, you know do threesomes..."
"Forget it. I don't willingly share my woman. But, I'm dealing with it as you let me know I had to do," I said.
"Gordie, I didn't mean it that way. I didn't mean to seem like I was issuing ultimatums. I don't know, I guess, I was kind of encouraging you. Yes, that's it I was encouraging you," she said.
"No harm no foul, Dana. You go out; I'm going out too. Where it'll all end is a mystery at the moment, at least to me, but sooner or later we'll both know, I suppose," I said.
"Where it's going to end? Young man, if it's up to me, it'll end with you and I being together and madly in love for the rest of our lives," she said.
"With or without your little something on the side?" I said. She looked away.
"Someday, you'll understand," she said. "Hiram is not threat to you. None!"
"And, that bothers me, Dana. Why is he no threat. He's a better lover than me; you said so. He makes as good a living. He's Taller than you instead of shorter. He's overweight, but not that bad looking. So why don't you just dump me and take up with him? I'd really like to know. It would seem like a no brainer to me, given what you think of me, for you to go with him," I said.
"Because, Gordon Fowler, you're the sweetest and kindest and gentlest bit of male flesh out there; and, you're the fath..." She'd stopped in mid-sentence. She was obviously about to include fatherhood in the equation, but stopped. Then it hit me.
"What were you about to say, but didn't," I said.
"Nothing. It's just..." My eyes narrowed.
"Dana, am I Jessica's father?" I said. I said it very calmly, quietly.
Yes, of course you are silly. What a dumb question. No one could ever take your place in Jessica's heart." The words were right, but the tone was all wrong. I nodded, but I was not convinced. I'd be getting a blood test on my baby. I was AB negative, fairly rare type. I'd know by Monday morning.
Once again, I was sitting in the Hard Hat sipping my JD when she plopped down beside he. "Hi handsome," said Tina.
"Oh, hi Tina," I said. She gave me a quizzical look.
"My, down in the dumps today?" she said.
"Yeah, maybe. Jessica may not be my kid. Well, she is, but somebody else might have been the sperm donor. I'll know by Monday," I said.
"Oh wow!" she said. "Monday?"
"Yes, a blood test. I'm a rare bird. If she doesn't match then the shit's gonna hit the fan in technicolor," I said.
She joined me and we closed the place, oh and it was Sunday, her day off.
"Mom, why was daddy so quiet at dinner tonight," said Jessica. Her mother pretended not to hear her.
"Mom?" said Jessica.
"He's—he's—got a lot on his mind, Jess," said her mother.
"He'll be okay. Like I said, he's got a lot on his mind."
She could see that her daughter wasn't buying the party line. But, there was nothing she could do about it now. She'd finally come to the conclusion that outing herself was a big mistake, maybe the biggest of her life.
Jessica turned and headed into the den. Her dad was watching the tube. He never watched television unless it was a college football game.
"Daddy?" I looked up. I think my look was impassive.
"Yes, honey?" I said.
"Dad, what's wrong?" said Jessica.
"Nothing, honey girl, why do you ask?" I said.
"Daaddddyyyyy?" said Jessica.
"What? I'm tired is all. Got a lot on my mind."
"You and mom got your stories straight, but it's not the truth is it daddy," said Jessica. She saw him take a deep breath.
"Jessica, some things are for adults to deal with and some for young people like yourself. This is one of the adult things. You'll be brought into the loop if it ever seems useful to do so. Okay?" I said. I could see my tone of voice left her frustrated, but oddly a little less worried. Her daddy would take care of things; he always did.
I parked in front of the clinic and hesitated. If I got out I'd be committed. I knew they had my babies medical records. She'd spent half a day in the ER the year before with an infection gotten during softball practice. The fly in the ointment was that they didn't have mine. But, I knew my blood type, and I'd know immediately if I went inside and asked what Jessica's was. And, knowing, I could be opening a whole new set of problems and challenges to deal with. So, again, I hesitated.
I steeled myself. I went inside. It was a slow day. There was just one other client or customer or whatever they called us drop-in-ers waiting to be helped.
The clerk at the front desk had me fill out a request form. She retreated into the back. Ten minutes later a nurse carrying a folder came out.
"Mister Fowler?" she said.
"Yes," I said.
"All you needed was your daughter's blood type?" she said, she looked dubious.
"Yes," I said.
"Type O," she said. She smiled. I smiled. But, inside my heart my mind my stomach my soul concealed a typhoon of emotions carving a swath of anger and hurt and a sense of betrayal through me. Jessica was somebody else's biological child. But, she was mine—and only mine—in any possible world regardless of what the medical record indicated.
At that moment I hated my wife. When she'd laid out her cheating activities on me I'd initially thought to rationalize them. Figured maybe it was my fault in some way. But this? This was way different. This was her and some cheating fuckwad scumbag doing me very dirty! I would be handling this. I would be handling this for sure. But, first things first. Who was the bio dad?
I called in sick; hell, I was sick. By the time she got in from her half day at the salon, I was three sheets to the wind—good thing too; it'd make the fight we were going to have a little more even.
She stopped in the doorway to the kitchen when she saw me there. She must have sensed my mood. She put down her purse on the sink and tentatively took the seat opposite me.
"Dana," I responded.
"Did I ever really know you, Dana?" I said. She looked away. She knew. She was putting the pieces together. Our semi-conversation of a few days before, my kind of aloofness since, all of it.
"It just happened," she said.
"Not that it matters an iota anymore, but I'd still like to know. How long have I been your cuckold?" I said. Her head snapped up.
"Gordon Fowler you are not my cuckold. You are my husband, only that!" she said.
"Hmm, the definition of a cuckold, Dana, is a man whose wife has sex with another man and expects her husband to, if not like it, at least to 'deal with it'. You know like you told me I had to do," I said. Okay, I was refining the definition a little bit; it's the way I looked at it.
"I'm sorry for saying that to you. I didn't mean it that way, and that's the truth," she said.
"Yes," she said.
"Okay, then just what do you expect me to do, seeing as how you refuse to stop fucking Hiram," I said.
"Gordon—I don't know. I mean I need what you do for me, and I need the little something that Hiram does for me. But none of what I do with him is meant to demean you or the things you do for me in any way. He isn't your equal. He's not half the man you are, not even," she said.
"So, if I said I was going to leave you if you don't stop cuckolding me with him, you'd stop because I am twice the man he is, right?" I said. She looked down.
"That's what I thought. I am your cuckold, Dana, or was. And though a reluctant one, I was even willing to live with my humiliation until today," I said.
"Gordon, please, don't make me choose. I'll do anything else you say, but don't make me choose. Please!" she said. She began to sob.
"Choose? No, you won't have to choose because I'm choosing. I will be leaving. I'm already packed. Apart from in court, I am hoping that I don't have to set eyes on you ever again after this little sit down. I actually hate you, Dana," I said. "But, that said, I have one more question."
"Gordon! What are you saying! You can't mean..."
"I said I have one more question!" My voice shook the walls. She almost fell out of her chair with the shock of it.
"What?" she almost squealed.
"Who was Jessica's sperm donor? I need to know," I said.
"Who fucked you and got you pregnant with Jessica? Who was her sperm donor?" I said.
"Gordon please. Can't we do something to get by this? I don't want to end us. I mean I really really don't want to," she said.
"Too late. Who was the sperm donor? I don't want to have to ask you again," I said.
"It doesn't matter, Gordie. It doesn't. It was so long ago, and the man has had no inkling that he did it to me. None," she said.
"Wait, wait, You saying the sperm donor doesn't know he's Jessica's biological father?" I said.
"That's exactly what I'm saying. He doesn't know and he never will know," she said. "I fucking don't want him to know. Why would I, you are Jessica's only dad—period!" I nodded.
She'd stopped me. I had assumed that whoever it was knew. Now, I had decisions to make. Now, I wasn't even sure that I wanted to know who it was. Talk about tough decisions. The only fly in the ointment—there were actually two— one, did Jessica have a right to know; and two, what if she needed an organ donation or such. As for the sperm donor per se; I didn't care if he lived or died.
I hadn't seen or talked to my adopted brother in a coon's age. My dad was still alive though my mom had died a year past, and he and my brother were my only close living relatives; and they lived up state. And, close was not real descriptive of us. The occasional holiday call, or other such occasion were just about our only contacts though all of us had gone to mom's funeral.
I considered calling Ronnie for his take on the situation but decided against it for the present. His marriage had ended badly, and I was afraid that I would be the recipient of some rather stark opinions if I gave him the whole skinny. Ronnie was an ex Pendleton DI. He was not at all sympathetic to weakness, real or apparent. And Dad, He was seventy-one and not all that together since mom died. No, I was on my own at least for the short term. Well, of course, there was Tina. But, she apparently, for motives known only to herself and perhaps a higher power, had an agenda of her own. Jesus I wish I could figure out what that agenda was, not knowing was killing me.
The Hard Hat was getting a lot of my business in recent days and today was no exception. It had been five days since discovering that Jessica was not my blood. Dana and I were co-existing, even sleeping in the same bed. She didn't come on to me though; she knew that that would have been a bad move. And, no, I couldn't tell you why I was still sleeping with her. I guess if I had to give a reason it was because it just didn't matter and I was used to it. Plus, it kept me close to my daughter. Until I knew what I was going to do, I wasn't going to be risking any charge of abandoning her. Besides, I was a creature of habit if there ever was one.
I looked up at the Budweiser Inc. supplied clock on the wall behind the bar, 10:00PM. Tina slid onto the stool beside mine. I looked over at her. Jesus she was beautiful, but tonight was not a good night for me.
"Hi, big guy," she said. "You haven't called for the last few days. I figured I better check on your wellbeing just in case," she said.
"Hi Tina. No, I got the bad news a few days ago. I've not been very good company since," I said.
"She's not yours, huh?" she said. I gave her hard look.
"Sorry. I mean of course she's yours. I was only referring to the sperm donor thingy, nothing more," she said. I nodded slowly.
"No, she's not," I said. "And, I just found out that the donor doesn't know he's the father, even now."
"I see," she said. "Whaddya thinkin' about doin'?"
"I don't know. I honestly don't. If I keep the asshole in the dark and at some point way down the line he finds out..."
"Yes, I see where you're going. He might figure to impose himself on you and Jessica," she said.
"Yes. That's about the size of it," I said.
"Do you know who it is?" said Tina.
"No. And, I'm almost afraid to find out. I mean what if it's someone I have to see all of the time? What if he's a close friend or even a family member?"
"I see what you mean. Yes, something like that could be very awkward," said Tina.
"I don't want to be the one adding to the fire here, Gordon. But, Your used to be best friend looks a lot like you. Do you... ?"
"No, it's not Hiram. He was stationed overseas for a year, and the timing makes him a non-suspect. No, it's somebody else who was around at the time. But, that's thirteen to fourteen years ago, now; it could be anybody," I said. She nodded.
"Okay. You want some advice?" she said.
"Don't know. Maybe. Yes," I said.
"Don't over react to the situation. Your only concern, and this is my considered opinion, should be for what's best for Jessica. And, whatever that is, it may or may not be very satisfying for you. Her interest—only hers—matters in something like this," said Tina. I gave her a look.
"You know, You're right," I said. "But, does that mean I should tell her? Risk losing her to another dad?"
"You won't lose her. But, to answer your question, yes, you need to tell her. If she were to find out later, and discover that you have hidden this from her, it would not be good.
"Right now, since you just found out, you have the chance to be the good guy. Your wife on the other hand, has hidden this from her for her whole life; she is definitely wearing the black hat.
"Do not wait. I would do it tomorrow. Take her to breakfast or lunch or something, and lay out the situation, all of it," said Tina. "And above all don't pressure her. She's going to have a lot to deal with, and none of it's little stuff."
I stared long at her. "Tina, you are one heckuva smart person. Everything you said makes sense. I'll do it. I won't like it, but I'll do it," I said. "But, what if... ?"
"She won't. She'll be curious. She'll eventually want to meet him, but for sure it won't matter," said Tina.
"Why wouldn't it matter?" I said.
"Because, young man, if she loves you now she'll love you even more for being honest and trusting her. If she doesn't love you, you'll eventually lose her anyway, sperm donor father or no," she said. I was nodding slowly and thoughtfully at her words.