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Chapter 3: Jane
Friday night and for once I wasn’t out with my pal David Wear; it was the local Rugby Club’s Annual Dinner and that sport was one of the few interests that we didn’t share. In Dave’s words “What sort of fucking moron goes out and gets a kicking every Saturday afternoon just for fun? It’s not even as if you get paid for it!” I must admit; there have been days when I’ve wondered the same thing.
It promised to be a good night and I was there early propping up the bar. I’d no partner for the evening as by tradition all unattached members of the first team and even a few who were married, came alone; then spent the evening getting wildly drunk at the expense of the past-players. The theory was that the resulting hangovers made things safer for the past-players the following day, when an annual ‘Past versus Present First Fifteens’ match was played.
I was approached almost immediately by Lorna, the younger sister of our team captain; this was something of a surprise as it was no secret that she disliked me intensely; Of far more interest however, was the girl that was with her; she was a stunner! Lorna began chatting and made the appropriate introductions; her friend was called ‘Jane’ and like her was a final year student at the local school.
Close-up Jane looked even prettier and was also something of an enigma. A student at the local high-school, she spoke; albeit rarely as she was clearly very shy, with a local accent and was drop-dead gorgeous too; why hadn’t I dated or at the very least met this girl before? Whilst tonight was hardly a perfect situation, I decided that I should immediately rectify this serious oversight and proceeded to flirt with her outrageously: not surprisingly Lorna soon withdrew.
Jane had very fine, silky and naturally blonde hair, which she then wore fairly long; reaching I suppose to about the bottom of her shoulder blades. Her eyes were a liquid Blue/Green shade and looked as if they could just swallow you up. Even back then Jane’s figure could be best described as statuesque and in the low-cut, iridescent blue and perhaps fractionally too small cocktail dress she was wearing it was shown off to perfection. A few years later my elder brother described Jane as “A poor man’s Bridget Bardot” I know her better and disagree; BB is poor man’s Jane Bright. Jane’s personality remains unfathomable; she was certainly very shy and nervous when I first knew her and even now she still can be; but nowadays if you were to meet her it’s just as likely that her passionate and adventurous side would be on display. I surrendered and stopped trying to fathom her out, years ago.
We stayed chatting at the bar for quite some time and whilst her nervousness eased a little, I was still unable to find out much about her; though she clearly knew who I was. Jane was happy to discuss rugby, of which she clearly knew very little and motorcycle racing, about which she was a little more knowledgeable; it was only later that I realised she knew more about my own racing exploits than she perhaps ought. From the questioning looks I received from friends and team-mates in passing, it was clear that Jane was a stranger to them too; I was increasingly intrigued. We stayed together until it was time to take our places for dinner and on the first team table at least ‘who is she?’ was a major topic of conversation; even Lorna’s brother didn’t seem to know her; just ‘some friend of Lorna’s’ though he did advise that whilst looking older; Jane might not be eighteen yet and so I should perhaps ‘watch my step.’
After the speeches and presentations and despite my rapidly increasing inebriation, I rejoined Jane quickly; not least because several team-mates had by now expressed their own interests. We spent the remainder of the evening dancing together and though the loud music deterred much further conversation I did at least get Jane’s surname, an address and phone number (both local as suspected) and arranged to collect her for a ‘date’ on the Sunday afternoon; when I would to take her for a spin on one of my motorbikes around the Lake District. Beyond that things are fairly vague, the alcohol took its toll and I don’t actually remember Jane Leaving.
Not unexpectedly, the following morning was not one of my best; but I made it back to the Rugby Club for a couple of lunchtime ‘sharpeners’ before we took to the field and were resoundingly beaten by the past-players. That’s another tradition; the old-boys always win the game and then foot the bill for another major piss-up on the Saturday evening; this annual and un-missable party being the main reason behind my fixing our date for the Sunday afternoon, not Saturday night.
It was whilst heading for the showers after the game that one of the stewards stopped me to pass on an ‘urgent’ phone message. It was ‘vital’ that I went around to the Weir’s farm that evening and especially stressed that this visit was to be ‘before you get too pissed.’ It seemed a strange request so after my shower, I got a pendik escort pint at the bar and made further enquiries; it was then that I discovered the message hadn’t been from David as I’d imagined; but from Sarah. I was horrified; my beer turned sour in the glass: the connotations of a message like that from Sarah were too frightening to consider. I left immediately, making apologies to those around me and whilst assuring everyone that I’d be ‘back in an hour or so’ I hoped rather than anticipated that my words would prove true.
It was only about five miles to the Weir farm, but felt like the longest journey of my life as I anticipated what trouble lay in wait; as I came up the farm track, the men were clearly heading back toward the house from the cow-sheds and both Al and Dave waved at my approach; perhaps it wasn’t what I feared; though Cam carried on into the house, not looking my way; perhaps the boys didn’t know? They were waiting as I got out of the car; Dave’s first words “you are in deep shit sunbeam” were not reassuring, nor was Al’s adjunct of “Ma is gonna kill you” Though the grins they were wearing suggested that things were not as serious as I’d feared?
“So what’s Sarah mad about?”
“Oh, we’re not getting involved. But you’d better get in there quick; pa’s already gone on ahead to tell her you’ve arrived” was Dave’s enigmatic response.
I headed inside with Dave and Al at my shoulders; my first sight as I entered the lounge was Cam, standing there and looking sternly toward me “At last; the village cradle-snatcher arrives!”
I was bewildered by that comment and it clearly showed. Cam and the boys burst out laughing whilst Sarah; who was smiling at least; replied “Sit down Rob, we need to talk; so outside the rest of you and leave us to it.”
There was a grumble of complaint; not least from Cam who hadn’t initially realised that Sarah’s dismissal included him too; but she’s never been a lady you argue with and within thirty seconds we were alone.
“Don’t look so worried; you’re not in trouble. Sarah reassured. “Well I don’t think you are?”
I grinned before responding “This isn’t a worried look; that disappeared a few moments ago when I realized your mysterious phone message to the Rugby Club didn’t indicate that our relationship had been discovered”
A burst of laughter. “God I’m sorry; I can see now how you might have thought that: well don’t worry, that secret’s still safe”
“So what was so urgent?”
“I thought you might tell me?”
“Knowing it’s not me and you; I would until ninety seconds ago have had no idea; but given Cam’s comment and the timing; I now presume it’s something to do with the pretty blonde girl that I met last night?”
“Right first time. Now why should I want to discuss Jane with you?”
I noticed that Sarah had referred to Jane by name, when I specifically hadn’t. “I have no idea; but things are sounding promising; as you seem to know who she is at least; which is more than any of us at the Rugby Club did.
That elicited more laughter from Sarah. “Did I say something amusing?”
Sarah shook her head, in what I mistakenly thought was apology. “For God’s sake; whilst Jane’s hardly part of the local social scene; the one guy there last night who does know her is you!”
“Me? I’ve never met her before in my life.”
“Wrong. Which Jane do we both know? Did you even ask her surname?”
“Yes; I can’t remember it at the moment; things got a bit heavy last night; but I’ve got it written down somewhere.
“Does Nixon ring any bells?”
“Yes; certainly it’s something like that.”
“So I’ll try again. Which Jane Nixon do we both know?”
“Look I’m sorry Sarah; but I’ve never seen that girl before. Believe me; I would’ve recognised her if I had.”
“God you men; you never look above a girls cleavage!”
I grinned “From that comment; I’d agree that we’re certainly discussing the same girl”
“And you obviously didn’t recognise her dress either then?”
“If I don’t know the girl, I’m hardly likely to know the dress, am I? But I can promise you that I’d recognise that too if I saw it a second time.”
“You obviously don’t look below a girl’s cleavage either: that was the second time you’ve seen that dress!”
“When was the first?”
“Your parents New Year’s Eve bash.”
“No way; Jane wasn’t there; I’d have remembered.”
“No you bloody fool; she wasn’t. But I was and in that dress; which as I remember you telling me at the time ‘looked marvelous.’ Clearly it wasn’t so marvelous that you remember it now.”
“So why was this Jane girl wearing your dress?”
“Because she’s my niece Jane: Jane Nixon: as in Jane and Eve; who you’ve met on at least a half a dozen occasions that I can remember.”
“But she has pig-tails and glasses and more importantly is only about bloody fourteen! She was absolutely not the girl I met last night.”
“This might be a surprise to you Rob, but pig-tails aren’t permanent, they maltepe escort can be combed out; in the same way that glasses can be replaced with contact-lenses.”
“I know that! But the girl I was with last night was NOT you’re niece”
“Honestly Rob; it was: I could probably give a better description of her than you can, as I was the one who lent her the dress and went to her house to do her hair and make-up last night. She said there was ‘a boy going that she really fancied’ but I never dreamt that it was you”
“Exactly; she claimed to be a school friend of Lorna Eden’s but Lorna’s eighteen, not fourteen.”
“And neither is Jane. Oh she might’ve looked fourteen the last time you saw her, but that was just the way her father made her dress. Jane’s almost eighteen too.”
“I still don’t like the sound of that ‘almost’.”
“Why does that matter, you’re certainly not going to sleep with her.”
I grinned at that “I assume she’s on the list with Angie and Princess Leia then?”
Sarah laughed out loud “You couldn’t be more wrong. I’m all in favour of your dating Jane; that’s why I needed to see you so urgently.”
“That you will have to explain.”
“Look; it would be an understatement to say that Jane’s upbringing has been sheltered; her father didn’t let her grow-up at all. But that’s all changed now and I can’t think of anyone better qualified to bring her out of herself and introduce her onto the local social scene, whilst keeping her safe; than you. Besides which, she’ll get lots of kudos amongst her friends if she’s seen on the arm our local racing super-star, which can only help her confidence too.”
“But what about me.”
“What about you? You can’t claim she’s not pretty enough for you. Hell; you were keen enough to date her before you found out who she was.”
“And when I thought she was over eighteen. I’d have dropped her quickly enough once I’d discovered that mistake!”
“But that’s what’s so perfect about the situation; I can rely on you to behave with Jane; so I can, in fact already have given Jane’s mum a glowing recommendation about you. It will of course mean that you’re not getting laid, but I’m sure I can take care of any shortfall in that department.” These last words were spoken through one of Sarah’s more salacious smiles.
“And when she’s eighteen?”
“We can talk about that nearer the time; besides that’s almost three months away and given that your relationships tend to be measured in days or weeks, rather than months, I doubt it’ll ever be an issue. Jane could’ve dumped you by then”
“Or me, her.”
“True enough. Look I’m not insisting that you date Jane; even if I could, I wouldn’t. But I would consider it as a very special favour if you’d keep her company for a few weeks at least and introduce her to everyone. Please?”
“How could I refuse.”
“Very easily; but I’m hoping you won’t”
“No I won’t; just make damned sure nobody else is aware of this ‘favour’ especially not Dave and Al.”
“Are you sure? They’re bound to give you some awful stick about dating Jane”
“I can live with it; better that than risk one of them letting it slip and Jane finding out: that would really screw-up her confidence.”
Sarah’s smile was huge. “You’re taking this seriously; thanks”
And so it began and I’m not sure which of us was the most surprised that our relationship was still going strong in July. Jane was fun to be with and seemed hell bent on catching-up on everything she’d missed out on in the preceding few years; as a result I found myself restraining her enthusiasm more often than having to ‘bring her out of herself’. The self/Sarah imposed sex ban probably helped too; I was never pushing so there was no pressure on the relationship in that direction; in fact latterly, Jane was the one who became frustrated by this aspect of our relationship. After constantly hearing stories from her ‘friends’ about what a ‘stud’ I was supposed to be and their refusing to believe that we weren’t ‘doing it’; Jane began asking herself why not? Obviously thinking there was some awful reason why I wasn’t trying to hit on her. That took quite a bit of explaining without being able to raise the truth; lots of buzz-words like “special, and respect” seemed to do the trick; along with my becoming more adventurous at fooling around in those areas that were allowed.
It didn’t prove quite so easy to curb my own desires as I’d originally anticipated. There was no doubt that my first impressions had been correct; Jane was absolutely drop-dead gorgeous; she also promised to be a very enthusiastic lover given even half-a-chance and most importantly; the plan that I would spend more time in Sarah’s bed hadn’t come to fruition either. It was hard to justify to Jane why after taking her home at the end of the evening I should drive right past my own house; to stay at the Weir’s place instead. More worryingly; Jane was the person who came closest to discovering the secret relationship which Sarah kartal escort and I had by that time been conducting for over four years. I was forced into outright lies the evening she commented that ‘even in a room full of people; you share silent conversations with Sarah’ fortunately Jane’s interpretation was that in view of the strained relationship I had with my own parents; I’d adopted Sarah as a surrogate mother-figure: I did nothing to correct the misconception.
As Jane’s birthday approached; the pressure of anticipation began to rack-up; by now she’d started work and was sharing an office with two older girls who provided some first hand rather than anecdotal reports about dating me and one of them had obviously been quite graphic in her recounting. Jane and I had gone to Manchester for the day; firstly to get her fitted for a new crash helmet which I’d ordered for her; it was to be specially sprayed up to match my own racing colours and afterwards to choose another ‘more romantic’ gift for her birthday. As we drove down the road I asked “have you thought what you’d like yet” The only restriction I’d placed on her choice being that it couldn’t be ‘a ring of any kind’ I had a personal rule about that and to this day have never bought a ring for any girl.
“Absolutely; I’ve known exactly what I wanted since last Wednesday”
“Great; I won’t have to sell one of my race-bikes to afford it will I?”
“No; it won’t cost you anything.”
“That sounds like my kind of present; what is it; can we get it today?”
“You have it already; I just want you to give it to me”
“And it is?”
“Its romantic; or at least I think so.”
“Fine; but what is it you want.”
“It’s not a ring.”
“We’ve established what it isn’t. Why don’t you tell me what it is?”
“It’s cheeky; I’m embarrassed to ask you for it.”
“Then how am I to get it for you? Look Jane, provided that it’s not my new Yamaha race-bike you can have anything I own” I glanced across to see Jane smiling sweetly.
“I’ve written it down” Jane rummaged in her bag and passed me a folded sheet of paper. Given that we were whizzing along at 60+ mph it probably wasn’t the wisest decision she’s ever made.
I must’ve been slow that morning; I’d not picked up on any undercurrent to our conversation at all. Whilst steering with one hand I opened the folded paper with the other. There were just a couple of lines of Jane’s neat handwriting which read ‘I’d like you to do all the things that you did to Susan Blair with me; especially the special thing with your tongue which she won’t describe but says is the best thing ever’
I read it twice: I’d not seen Susan in over a year and I’d no idea that she worked in the same company as Jane; but I remembered exactly what Jane’s note referred to: Susan was not what you’d term a ‘nice girl’ Looking up and across toward Jane again I could see the ‘sugar wouldn’t melt’ smile was still firmly fixed; but the glint in her eye could have been her Aunt Sarah’s; it was raunchy. At this point I finally took a quick glance out of the windscreen; how long since I’d last looked I can’t say, but we were now on the wrong side of the road and on collision course with a large truck!
My response was to scream “Christ; No!” whilst swerving back to the left, slowing down and pulling into an adjacent lay-by. I took a few seconds to recover my composure; then I looked across to Jane who’d collapsed in a flood of tears. I shrugged off my seat belt and leant across to comfort her and soothingly whispered something like “Hey, calm down: we’re alright.”
“Are we? It doesn’t feel like it from were I’m sitting; you bastard!”
“That’s hardly fair; you’re the one who distracted me: besides we missed it and nobody’s hurt”
“Missed what?” she sniffled
That threw me “The big fucking red one that almost squashed us!”
“Oh: it’s a pity it missed.”
This wasn’t right; “Jane did you notice the truck?”
“No! I’m not interested in it either”
“Then why are you crying.”
“Why do you think?”
“Well, I thought it was because you’d been frightened by the truck; but that’s obviously wrong”
“I’ve said; I didn’t see a truck!”
“Well then; why are you upset?”
“Because you don’t care about me and you think I’m ugly and you’re obviously seeing someone else and you haven’t even got the decency to be nice about it and… and… and I don’t know: I just hate you!”
Where the fuck had this come from? “Whoa; calm down love; could you try to explain slowly; in words of one syllable then perhaps I’ll understand”
“My present; you said it could be anything; I tried to tell you on Thursday and again last night; I just couldn’t; I was embarrassed; that’s why I wrote it down: You keep saying it’s ‘because you respect me’ and ‘we’ll talk about it when I’m eighteen’ but I don’t want ‘respecting’ anymore. You’ve done it with Susan Blair and half the other girls in the area: what’s wrong with me?”
“There’s nothing wrong with you: I’ve never suggested that there was”
“It doesn’t sound like it. I finally pluck up the courage to tell you what I want and how do you answer: ‘Christ No!’ it’s hardly very reassuring is it?
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