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“More wine, Ginnie?” Lawrence asked in a “maybe you’ve had enough” tone.
“Yes, please,” I answered, turning my gaze back to the last of the lingering sunset behind the Allegheny Mountains on the other side of the Shenandoah Valley. I was a bit amused at what must be a conundrum for him—wondering if I’d had too much to walk a straight line but enough to make his obvious intentions easier. I had come on the date anticipating—and even welcoming at the time—his obvious intentions. Even I have to admit that I’m pretty easy—because, basically, I enjoy it.
He had been ogling me and making suggestive comments ever since the term had started, and I had been flattered and welcomed them. Nearness on a date hadn’t made my heart grow fonder, though. But he was a man, and as long as he was equipped, he could have what he wanted tonight. I was definitely in the mood, despite his unintended efforts to squelch that.
Lawrence was good looking enough and he was talked up by Natalie, if not by the other women faculty members I knew. But most of them were much too serious for me. He was nearly twenty years old than I was, I am sure—but young enough to manage.
And on that note, “He’s good in bed,” Natalie had whispered to me when he’d flirted at a faculty convocation meeting before school started.
“How good?” I’d asked. I’d found Natalie’s earthiness welcome in the stuffiness I’d found in the department otherwise.
“Very good,” she said and winked at me. “And I think he fancies you.”
On a visual inspection, I fancied him too. I liked older men as long as they kept themselves in trim. They usually were safe to be with, experienced, and grateful for the opportunity—understanding that if they took care of you, you would take care of them. But I had found, once on this date, that Lawrence was too full of himself to have room for me as well. I had to think that maybe he’d be that way in bed too. And as wildly interesting as he was, he was boring. I giggled at the thought of the contradiction, yet the “rightness” of that, which might have been a signal that I, indeed, had had quite enough wine, rang true.
Days later I wondered if it was just the wine. I certainly hope not, although details of that evening have become more hazy rather than clearer with the passage of time.
We were on the Bennings’s—or was it Benkins? . . . whatever—deck, at their Wintergreen townhouse condo. Lawrence had brought me to the tented concert hall by the resort lodge earlier in the evening for a fall orchestra concert—an annual Halloween night tradition. He had asked me if I wanted to stop off at his friends’ mountain condo after the concert before driving back to Harrisonburg, in the valley. Wintergreen was a ski resort community perched above the Blue Ridge Parkway and crowning the Blue Ridge Mountain range to the east side of the Shenandoah Valley near where Interstate 64 crossed the mountains.
I’d agreed readily to put off an awkward and quite possibly disappointing homecoming as long as possible. I knew he’d want to come in when he returned me to my apartment, and I’d let him but my expectations of what happened after that had been dampened by his incessant chatter. I’d had quite enough of him. Yes, I’d let him bed me, but more for my need than his.
Unfortunately, he hadn’t had enough of himself yet. I’d been warned about him when I’d joined the faculty of James Madison University in the English Department. He was the chair of the History Department. But of course I hadn’t heeded the warning. I’d listened more to Natalie, who was head over heels for him. He really was quite good looking—more so with his mouth shut, though.
Happily, Clinton Benkins—or was it Clyde?—had wound Lawrence up by asking how the Skyline Drive, starting just north of where we were sitting and winding around on top of the Blue Ridge Mountains up to Front Royal, near the top of the valley, had come to be. The history of the Skyline Drive obviously was one of Lawrence’s pet subjects. With a sigh, I took another swig of my wine—a very good Veritas winery viognier—and wrapped my new Monet-motif scarf and silk jacket more tightly around me. It was a good 10 degrees cooler up here on the mountain on the last day of October than it was down in the valley to the west or the piedmont to the east. Going on autopilot, I stared into the firepit and the last vestiges of a red and purple sunset beyond blue mountains off the west, while Lawrence waxed eloquent and oh so erudite.
“They started plans for a heaven highway—spanning the top of the world along mountain summits—accessible from Washington, D.C., as early as the mid 1920s, under Calvin Coolidge,” Lawrence said. “It took them until 1934, under FDR, to clear the original landholders off over 150,000 acres of mountain-top land and the hollows—which wasn’t easy to do. Hidden homesteads were tucked away in the folds and hollows of the mountain, where people were living under the most primitive conditions. And these, mind you, were mostly escort bostancı people whose families had been there for generations, from the earliest days of the expansion west, and who had no intention of leaving at all. But the government was persistent and often brutal. By 1940 fewer than a hundred mountain people were estimated to be hiding out in the hollows. But the last of them wasn’t deemed to have been ferreted out and resettled or to have died until nearly 1980.”
“Estimated,” you said, our host interjected, with a question in his voice. “Are you saying there are still holdouts in the hollows of the mountains below us?”
“Who knows?” Lawrence said with a shrug. Then, showing a mischievous smile, he said, “It’s Halloween. Maybe the spirits of the displaced families return for one night—this night—every year to haunt those who forced them out of their homes. Nearly every year there are reports in the local papers of encounters with ghostly mountain folk who had either been displaced or somehow had avoided being so reappearing to haunt the rest of us. I’ve always thought it was a ploy to increase tourism for leaf-change-viewing trips up into the Blue Ridge in the autumn. The media features are always accompanied with advice on where to lodge and to dine.”
“Sounds like the making of a scary story,” our host said, showing by the amusement in his voice that he wasn’t much scared. Both men laughed.
“But seriously,” Lawrence said, returning to his lecture mode, “the initial work, once started, only was able to go on for eight years—because World War Two came along and all the young men were pulled off construction to go to war. But by then . . .”
I lost all interest in his dissertation at that point—or rather gained interest in where he’d set the wine bottle down—and when I had refilled my glass, I sighed contentedly and got lost in the fire. I was in the mood to plunge into the flames. All keyed up and no one to help me in my need. If Lawrence had asked our host if we could use one of his guest rooms and took me there and ravaged me, I would have been happy despite his boring lecturing—if he refrained from lecturing while he was fucking me.
I tuned back in when hearing the emphasis put on “men.” I could use a man right now, I thought.
“It was quite a feat, forging a road along the spine of the Blue Ridge,” Lawrence was saying. “Roosevelt had created a men’s construction work force to provide jobs in the Depression, and he set a thousand of them, the Civilian Construction Corps, to carve out the Skyline Drive.”
“Men? All men?” our host asked.
“I would presume so,” Lawrence answered. “It was backbreaking work. Some men died building the drive. Hardly work for women.”
Of course, hardly not, I thought, and, controlling myself from giving a snort, returned to focusing on my wine glass and the enticement of the fire pit.
An hour later, as we were leaving, Lawrence, turned to me, shook his head like he was my father and catching me on a bad habit, and said, “Don’t forget your scarf. You almost left it at the concert and then in the car. It fell on the deck when you stood.” I could almost hear him say, rather, “while you were trying to stand.”
“Thank you,” I answered a bit icily and retrieved my Monet-patterned scarf. It was new—one of his lily pond motifs—and early in the season; I wasn’t used to going around with a scarf yet this year. I dared not say more, as I felt I was slurring my words. I wondered if that was as obvious to Lawrence as it was to me.
We took the short rise to the top of the mountain at night from the Wintergreen entrance in Lawrence’s beloved and much—too much—praised and described vintage Mustang convertible. At the ridgeline, we crossed the Blue Ridge Parkway and then plunged down again on a steep, winding, narrow road that was to take us past Sherando Lake at the base of the mountains and hence through Waynesboro and Staunton and back to Harrisonburg. It was dark, the trees came right up to the side of the gravel, and the road forked more than once. Lawrence claimed to know just which forks to take—it was clear he was anxious to get back to Harrisonburg—and to my apartment. I was keyed up and in a rush to get there too. He drove too fast for the conditions, but he was a good driver.
There was nothing he could do about the clunky sound that abruptly escaped the engine compartment, though, and that prompted him to pull into an overgrown and rutted driveway to avoid someone coming upon our stopped car in the winding road when coming down the mountain behind us and crashing into the tail of the Mustang.
He stopped so abruptly that my head was snapped back, and the shock of that, along with the effect of having drunk too much wine, caused me to zone out momentarily.
* * * *
Lawrence exited the car, lifted the hood, poked around while I stood nearby holding a flashlight, and demonstrated that a university department head was conversant with pretty crude ümraniye escort profanity. But he also seemed to know about what went on under the hood of a car, which was more than I knew.
“That’s it, then,” he said. “It can be fixed, but it will take more than one person and considerable time.” He explained that someone would have to lift this and hold it out of the way without detaching its cables while he fixed something else under it, which, in itself, could take half an hour or more. He, of course, named the parts, but I, of course, didn’t remember what they were. He also looked expectantly and hopefully at me, and I quickly told him, “Well, don’t look at me, I’m afraid. I paid $200 for this skirt and blouse set and you’re already filthy from the oil.” I didn’t also say that I was so shaky from the wine that I couldn’t trust myself to hold an awkward piece of machinery up in the dark for upwards of an hour, while he worked under it with his precious hands. He didn’t argue the point, so he probably was thinking the same.
We looked around. The mountains appeared to rise in all directions from us. We were truly back into one of the mountain hollows, where we quickly found there was no cellphone reception. Amazingly enough, we saw the glimmer of lights further down the track we’d pulled into.
“I think this is still part of the national park,” Lawrence said. “There shouldn’t be anyone living back there.”
“Should we try it, or should we try walking back up or down the road to find help?” I asked. I had purposely said “we.” There was no way I was going to stay out here on the side of a dark mountain at night by myself.
“Those lights certainly are closer,” Lawrence said.
We stumbled down the overgrown drive, which, like the roads we’d traveled before it, forked. We took the right fork because that appeared to lead to the lights. It didn’t. The old wooden farmhouse, which proved to be partially lit by lantern light—was off to the left, but there was a footpath from the drive we were on over to it, and we took that.
As we came nearer, we heard the music—a man singing in a soft, melodic baritone and lightly strumming a guitar.
He didn’t act surprised at all as we approached the front porch, where he was sitting on a rickety cane-seated chair and playing. He watched us approach with a slight smile and no surprise, as if he’d expected us—I’d even say a slightly dopey smile if he wasn’t such a handsome and well-put-together young man. In fact, he was gorgeous. And those mesmerizing pale-blue eyes. He was wearing bib coveralls, but, as far as I could see, nothing else—at least that was the impression that was given, and I found it exceptionally sensual. He was barefoot, which added to notion that he was naked under the loosely fitting bib overalls.
He had an immediate, melting effect on me. There was no question that I was in heat. I’m afraid I had few inhibitions against responding to my desires when I was in that state.
This last day of October was unseasonably warm now that we were most the way down off the mountains—but not that warm, I wouldn’t think. I’ll have to admit—we can blame it on the wine and my irritation that Lawrence hadn’t proved to be a divine date—that the young man had an overpowering, sensual effect on me.
Although it appeared to be no surprise in him that we had popped up, he did stop singing and strumming, looked at us briefly in silence without losing his somewhat sloppy smile, and, while still capturing me with his eyes, made me jump by calling out, “Pa. Ma. Billy Bob. Jack. We got visitors.”
Lawrence and I were standing at the base of the wooden steps up to the porch when the summoned family came to the front door, barred only by a slitted screen door, and peered out at us. They looked like they had just walked off the set of a television program about the Waltons’ poorer relatives. Three men, one older and two young and strapping like the young man sitting and singing on the porch—all in greasy bib overalls—all, including Pa, easy on the eyes in my current “want” mood. And, teetering beyond them, with them towering over her, a mousy looking, skinny woman in a tired cotton shift covered by a soiled frilly bib apron. I’m sure she’d been very pretty once. Now she just looked tired—and a bit piqued.
Was that blood dribbling down her apron front, I wondered.
Despite being shielded behind the men and looking sickly against their robust physiques, she quickly proved to be in charge.
“And who might you be? I’m busy canning tomatoes,” she said in a tired, slightly put-upon voice.
Of course, if we’d known you were canning tomatoes, lady, I thought, we wouldn’t have decided to throw a rod through our car engine in your driveway. I didn’t say that out loud, though. These looked like people who would shoot you with a shotgun as soon as spit in your eye.
But then the woman checked herself and smiled wanly. “But that’s no way to greet kartal escort bayan visitors. What can we do for you? You must be in a spot of trouble to be visiting this late of night in the mountains.”
Lawrence told them what the problem was, and, to their credit, under the woman’s direction, the three men standing at the door mobilized themselves to go off with him immediately to aid us in our distress. “You stay here, Tommy Dean,” the woman said to the younger man sitting on the porch—who hadn’t budged from his chair. “You’d just be in the way anyway.”
As the three men clattered down from the porch and past me, picking up Lawrence along the way, the woman said, “Tommy Dean’ll give you no problem, Miss. He’s just a little slow. He’s a good boy.”
That had me wondering how good he was.
Within seconds it was just me standing before the porch stairs, Tommy Dean sitting in his chair and giving me a somewhat silly, but melting smile, and Ma in the door. Seconds later, with a “You can come in or stay out here as you like, but I have to get back to my canning,” the woman had turned and left. I climbed the stairs to the porch, smiling at Tommy Dean as I moved, and he smiled back. I was lost in those pale-blue eyes. At the door, I looked into the stark, worn-wood interior of the house. All I could see from here was a living room and dining room, sparsely furnished with crude, worn-out, mismatched furniture. Everything looked like it had been abandoned there decades ago—and justifiably so. The lantern light came from the kitchen beyond.
I was about to enter the house when I saw it—the carcass of a skinned deer hanging from the ceiling in the dining room. No matter where I sat or stood in the living or dining rooms, I would be facing a dead deer carcass. I turned back and moved to an old rocking chair on the porch on the other side of the front door from where Tommy Dean had returned to strumming his guitar and singing an achingly beautiful song in his soft, low baritone. As he sang, he watched me.
It wasn’t just his singing that was achingly beautiful. So was he. Young, obviously muscular as his bib overalls didn’t effectively cover much. Blue eyed, but black haired, with a lock hanging down into his face, giving me the urge to go over to him and brush it out of his eyes.
He was singing a love song. I realized that the lyrics were quite suggestive. It was more than a love song. I blushed, but I continued to listen, straining to catch the lyrics. He stopped singing and we sat there, still maintaining eye contact, both of us swaying a bit in our chairs.
“Here, come over here, Little Darlin’,” he whispered to me, extending an arm toward me. “I know what you came here for.”
How could he know when I didn’t know myself—or was trying to pretend to myself I didn’t know? Nevertheless, I rose and walked over to him—very close to him. I have no idea why I did that. He would think I was easy—I was being easy. Maybe it was the wine; maybe it was because I had expected something with Lawrence and now wasn’t that keen on having that from Lawrence. Maybe it was just because—I have to admit it—promiscuous and in heat. It doesn’t matter what I thought. I went to him.
He put his cheek on my belly and I brushed the lock of hair out of his eyes with my hand. One of his hands went to and under the hem of my skirt and worked its way up, up above my knee. I leaned my face down, breathing in the unexpectedly clean, smoky smell of his hair, and applied my lips to the top of his head.
His fingers crept higher and higher, moving under the hem of my panties and higher. I groaned as they found, and parted, my labia, the thumb moving up to touch—and then lightly stroke—my clit and his middle finger penetrated me. I did nothing to resist him. I moaned as the finger moved deeper inside me and turned my face down to his. I leaned down to him and we kissed. Giving me a mischievous smile then, he pushed my skirt up to above my waist and my panties down to my ankles. I stepped out of them and then was holding his head close into the quick of me as he found me with his tongue. I moaned, a low, guttural rattle sounding from deep inside me. When I could take no more, I ran my fingers into his wavy hair, arched his head up with the grip on his hair, and leaned down for another kiss. The expression on his face was dreamy.
Coming out of the kiss, I murmured. “Is there someplace—?”
“I have a bed in a shed over there,” he whispered.
* * * *
He was magnificent—if you could consider him just lying there on his back initially, body beautiful, thick and hard, holding my waist between his strong hands, and smiling up at me while, saddled on his pelvis, I rode him . . . and rode him and rode him. Freed of all inhibitions, I was wanton in my use of him, and he lay there, bug-eyed that I was so easy for him.
In my mood for a man, this beautiful, hard-bodied young man was more than satisfying. I held on tight to the brass rungs of the headboard of the squeaky old bed frame in the darkened shed and concentrated on him inside me—hard and throbbing—touching every surface inside me at my control, moving my pelvis on is cock, caressing and stretching and transporting me to the heights of ecstasy.
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