Serendipity - Version Bravo

by Lubrican

Chapters : 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | Epilogue

Chapter Fifteen

There was a tightness to the atmosphere when I got back to the kitchen. I know that seems like a "Gee ... ya think?" kind of comment, but I want you to think about it like this. Imagine standing on the street, getting ready to cross, when with no notice, a car swerves around the corner and somebody starts shooting at you out of the window as it roars past. You don't get hit. Okay, now imagine the same scenario, but when that car roars around the corner, there is no shooter. Instead, the swerving car almost hits you, but then is gone into the night.

Both of those cause an upset in your life, obviously, but only one of them causes a monumental change in the way you look at the world. A simple, swerving car is something we understand, and can deal with. Accidents happen. But when somebody tries to kill you, the world changes in a way that changes you as well.

Nobody tried to kill Hannah, but the visual evidence, followed by her "investigation" of the events she had blithely walked into, was an event that changed the world, and Hannah herself, forever.

I'm going to risk one more analogy before I go on and describe the succeeding events.

Imagine you're taking a stroll in the night and a space ship lands in the park you're walking through. It's shocking on a number of levels. Maybe you didn't believe aliens existed. Maybe you're scared, because the only information you have to work with are all those old alien invasion movies. Maybe you're elated that you might get to be the first person on Earth to try to communicate with them.

How this analogy applies to Hannah is that first one. Her system of beliefs was required to change more or less instantly. What she had not believed could "be" was revealed to her in shocking detail as being very real indeed.

Hannah, within the space of an hour or two, was exposed to a new world in which her brother could love ... and make love to ... more than one woman. In fact, more than two women. And it was just as obvious that all three women loved him back. True, it wasn't the traditional kind of love that is in all the books and movies, and which we insist on teaching to our children. Our lives are full of those "truths" that are passed down in oral tradition, and which have even become codified in law. "Killing people is bad" is a good example. We make that a black and white decision when we talk about it with our children. But the fact is there are people in the world who need to be killed, because they are dangerous to everyone else. Oh, you can lock them in a cage, but all that's doing is killing them slowly.

The point is that Hannah discovered something that was so new, and so different than how she'd thought the world "was" that, like that person standing in the park looking at the glowing bulk of an honest-to-Pete space ship, her beliefs changed. Before this, I was just her brother.

Now I was a man who could somehow love multiple women, and make that work.

I know that's oversimplifying things, but I promised to get on, and you needed to understand this before I did.

And yes, I know that after I promised to only use one more analogy, I used two. Sorry. Sue me. You really need to understand why Hannah made some of the decisions she did.

And that's because none of us realized what was going on inside her while all this was going on.

For us, I was the brother who had betrayed her trust, and violated her daughter. For Kat, she was the girl who had dreamed of being with me like she recently had been, and was terrified that her dream-come-true was going to be ripped away from her. And for Hannah, she knew she was supposed to be furious, but was experiencing emotions, and having ideas that were way outside her comfort zone.

Basically, Hannah was thinking that, if I could handle three women ... might I be able to handle four?

Her daughter had described how all of this was the result of a long held dream coming true.

Suddenly, Hannah's fantasies about me were back, and now there was evidence that her dream could potentially come true too.

As I said, when I came in, the atmosphere was tense. Each of us, as I have described, had our own thoughts.

It was silent when I came in, and stayed that way.

I sat down. I looked at Kat, who glanced my way and then looked away.

I looked at Hannah, who seemed to be somewhere else in her mind.

Decisions had to be made.

"So what now?" I asked.

Both women stirred, moving around to no real purpose.

"Mom?" Caitlin's voice was high. "Why did you come here?"

"A woman can't visit her brother?"

"You know what I mean." There was a spark of confidence in Caitlin that had been missing for quite some time. "Did you think something was going on?"

"You mean sex?" Hannah barked another laugh. "Good grief, no. That was the farthest thing from my mind. I just came to ride with you on the way back home ... to have an adventure. You always talk about how much fun these trips are. I just wanted to see what it was like."

"Really? That's awesome!" Caitlin's voice was full of enthusiasm.

"I'm surprised you feel that way," said Hannah, dryly.

"Oh, come on," snorted Caitlin. "How many mothers want to do what their daughters love doing?"

Again, while we did not know it, Hannah received this in a slightly different manner than Caitlin offered it.

"Well, that's why I came," she said, her voice sounding odd. Imagine somebody saying, "That was a wonderful meal," in a voice that sounds like it should be used for, "I think my water just broke and it's time to go to the hospital." Her voice just didn't match what it uttered.

"Can we still do that?" asked Caitlin.

I didn't know what to think about that. I assumed Kat was simply trying to talk about anything other than what we'd been talking about. And I assumed that Hannah's intentions had changed.

"I don't see why not," said Hannah, in that same strange voice.

Now my imagination tried to supply a vision of what that might be like.

At one point, while I was on top of Kat, pressed deep and rotating my loins to get her off, I thought about our upcoming trip to return her to California. In the past, we'd visited primarily tourist traps, and had stayed in motels. I'd always gotten two rooms. As Caitlin squirmed and moaned under me, filled with my incestuous penis, I imagined camping out with her this year. When you camp out in a tent, you tend to go to bed early because it's dark and there's nothing to do.

I imagined something to do in the darkness inside the tent.

And I imagined us seeing more of each other's naked bodies, than of knick knack stands, six-legged cows and giant balls of twine.

Of course Hannah didn't fit into that vision of the trip, and I got back to thinking about renting two rooms and seeing more tourist traps.

I was pretty sure that, considering what everybody would be thinking about, it just wouldn't be the same carefree kind of trip it had been in the past.

"Do you really think that's a good idea?" I asked. "I can put you two on a plane and you'll be home in time to watch NCIS."

I smiled, showing them both how helpful I was trying to be.

"I just got off a plane," said Hannah. "I don't want to get right back on one."

"I think it would be great to take a trip together," gushed Caitlin. I was pretty sure she hadn't thought this out at all.

"Don't you think things would be ... uncomfortable?" I asked.

"Things are already uncomfortable," said Hannah. "All this is not going to go away. We're going to have to talk about it, and make decisions and all that. What better way to do that than on a long trip where all you have to do is talk?"

"What if we argue?" asked Kat, finally starting to envision what I was envisioning.

"I don't think we'll be arguing," said Hannah, and that strange note was back in her voice.

"I don't want to stop loving Uncle Bob, Mother," said Caitlin, with surprising courage.

"I'm aware of that," said Hannah. "I'm sure that's one of the things we'll end up talking about."

She stood, abruptly. For some reason my eyes went to her breasts, which bobbed up and down under the silk blouse she was wearing. I moved my eyes upwards, intentionally, feeling a little guilty for having accidentally ogled her, only to find her watching my face.

"Sorry," I said, knowing I was busted. Talk about jumping from the frying pan into the fire.

"You certainly are," she said. "You're a piece of work, Bob. I had no idea you were half satyr."

"I'm not," I tried to argue.

"Oh yes you are," she said firmly. "There's plenty of evidence to support that position."

"Okay. I guess I deserve that," I admitted, reflecting on how she'd caught me sleeping with the musketeers, and then, within three hours had stared at her breasts. "What do you want me to do?"

"I haven't decided yet," she said, but she didn't sound too sure of that. "When do we leave?"

"Really?" asked Caitlin. "We're really going to drive home ... all three of us?" She had obviously been thinking about that, and didn't sound nearly as happy as she had when it had first been suggested.

"That's what I came for," said Hannah. "Does he let you drive?"

"Yes!" said Caitlin, distracted. "He says I'm a good driver."

"Haven't I said that too?" asked her mother.

"Yes, but you didn't really mean it," said Caitlin.

Apparently she was right, because Hannah didn't defend herself. "I think we need to get on the road soon," she said, instead.

An hour and a half later we had turned in Hannah's rental and were headed west.

I could go into nauseating detail about the conversation during that first leg of the trip, but I won't. Instead I'll just hit the high spots.

Such as Hannah's opinion that the reason Caitlin had fallen in love with me (her words!) was that she hadn't had an adult, male role model in her life. Chad's death had left a hole in the family that had never been refilled. So there had never been a man for a little girl to fall in love with, like most little girls do at one time or another, and then fall out of love with, at least in sexual terms.

Caitlin thought that was silly, and opined that, if that was what had happened, it would have happened that first summer, when she was around me for an extended period of time. She claimed she'd always known I was the coolest uncle a girl could have, but she hadn't started having "those" kinds of feelings for me until she was twelve or thirteen.

"I still don't want to marry him," she said at one point. "I love him, and I always want him to be in my life in a romantic way, but I know I can't marry him."

"That's not how the world works, dear," said her mother, who was sitting shotgun and turned sideways in her seat so she could see both the driver (me) and her daughter, in the back seat.

"I don't see why not," said Kat.

"And what happens when you do get married? You think your husband will think it's a ducky idea for you to run over to Uncle Bob's every so often and get your ashes hauled?"

"Who says I'm going to get married at all?" said Kat.

"If you think I'm going to my grave without grandchildren, you're not nearly as smart as your teachers think you are," said Hannah.

"Women have children all the time without being married," snorted Kat.

"Women other than my daughter," muttered Hannah, loud enough to be heard.

"It's way too soon to think about grandchildren anyway, Mother," said Caitlin, seriously. "That's years and years away."

"Not if you keep having unprotected sex," said Hannah.

That's a pretty good example of what went on for the first few hours. Then I guess they got tired of wrangling, because the conversation turned to where we were going, and what we were going to do.

It was roughly eight hours to Albuquerque, which has a lovely old town, and a pretty amazing aquarium, especially considering it's so far from the ocean. I'd been there as a kid, and thought the girls might enjoy it too. I remembered a little shop that sold kaleidoscopes I had been fascinated with. They were much too expensive back then, but it was a different world now. I had money, and I wanted a good one. And I was pretty sure the ladies would enjoy shopping in that area too.

We rotated driving, each going a couple of hours before changing off. We also rotated seats. When I was in the back seat, I napped. I'm pretty sure I was the only one who did that. Neither woman wanted me talking to the other without being able to hear what was said. That's just my opinion, of course.

It was about four PM when we got there, and it was decided we'd take a quick tour of Old Town, to decide where to come back to the next day after we checked out of the hotel, and before we got on the road again. Once they were there, though, they didn't want to leave, and I had to drag them away two hours later.

By then we were all tired, and wanted to get to the hotel. We opted for fast food on the way.

Which brings us to the accommodations for the night.

I assumed there would be two rooms, one for each gender. Even so, I resisted the idea of going someplace cheap. I'd gone online, and found a place called Hotel Cascada, which had its own indoor water park, and looked pretty good in the pictures at their web site. And it wasn't terribly expensive either. So I handed my credit card to Hannah and said, "Get whatever kind of room you want." What I meant was that she could get a fancy room, or the one that came with water park tickets, or the spa treatment or whatever. I told her I didn't care what she got for me, since all I planned on doing was going swimming and, after dinner, watching some TV before turning in to be ready to drive in the morning.

"Got it," she said, and climbed out of the driver's seat. Catlin stayed in the back seat, where she was at the moment.

"She doesn't seem so mad now," said Kat.

"I'm not sure that's true," I said. "This isn't something she's going to just forget and forgive."

"I can't believe she wanted to drive back."

"Maybe she's trying to moderate things. The last thing I want is for there to be lifelong trouble between us. I hope she feels the same way."

"I'm not giving you up," she said, stubbornly.

"How about we worry about that after you graduate," I said.

"That's so long from now," she moaned.

"Your senior year of high school will be fun and full of interesting things," I said.

"Yeah, right. I can't wait to be done with school."

"You won't be. You'll be going on to college."

"That's different."

"Really? How's that?"

"I don't know, but I know it will be different."

Such are the 'truths' young people know.

We saw Hannah walking back to the car, and stopped talking. Hannah's breasts were bouncing as she walked, but there was no way she could catch me watching them this time, so I looked.

Maybe I am half satyr.

She looked like an older, more mature, more seasoned Caitlin, which is to say she looked very good indeed. She had stayed in shape and, once again, I was surprised that some man hadn't battered down her defenses and bagged her.

She got in and started the car, handing a little packet with key cards in it to Caitlin.

"One-sixty-three," said Hannah, steering between two buildings. "It's supposed to be in the middle of the back side of this building, with a view of the pool."

"There are three cards in here," said Caitlin, pulling them out.

"There are three of us, dear," said her mother.

"Which one is for Uncle Bob?"

"Doesn't matter. They're all the same."

It was exceedingly quiet in the car as Hannah parked in the middle of the building. There was a doorway that went inside. Each room had its own balcony. I noticed these things, but only peripherally.

"Uncle Bob doesn't have his own room?" asked Caitlin, making it crystal clear she'd assumed the same thing I had.

Hannah reached for one of the key cards.

"Nope," she said, and got out. She leaned back in. "You two can bring the luggage up. I can't wait another minute to take a shower."

Then she walked off, toward the entrance.

Caitlin and I just sat there, our jaws hanging.

"She must think I'd try to sneak off and sleep with you," said Caitlin, eventually.

"Maybe," I said, my mind whirling.

"But that's silly," said Caitlin. "I'd be crazy to try that."

"Yeah," I said, distractedly.

"Not that I wouldn't think about it," she said.

"Yeah," I said, still trying to understand what was going on.

"We could go swimming," said Kat. "We know how to do it in the pool." She giggled. "Boy, if I could actually tell people what happened this summer, what great stories I could tell."

"Not a good idea," I said, finally paying attention to what she was saying. "We'd better get the stuff up there."

"I guess so," she agreed.

Between the two of us, it took two trips to get all the suitcases inside. Caitlin had two, which were heavy enough that she struggled with one of hers at a time. I took mine and Hannah's. Each of us had only one. The room turned out to be a suite, with a living room that had a TV in it, along with a comfortable looking couch and an easy chair. There was a hallway between that room and the bedroom, that had a kitchenette on one side and the bathroom on the other. We could hear the shower running in the bathroom as we took Caitlin's and her mother's bags into the bedroom. I left mine sitting beside the couch, which is where I now thought I would be sleeping. Then we went back to the car and I brought in Caitlin's second bag, while she brought in her mother's carryon bag, which was stuffed as full as possible.

Then we didn't know quite what to do. The shower wasn't on any more, but Hannah was still in there. I was standing beside the kitchenette, trying to decide if I wanted to make a cup of coffee in the coffee maker on the counter, when it sank in that the clothes Hannah had been wearing, including her lacy under things, were lying in a pile on the edge of the king size bed. I was trying to decide whether to call through the door myself, or have Caitlin do it, to offer to hand her in some clothes, when the bathroom door opened and she came out, wearing only a towel. It was a big towel, but there was a lot of skin to cover, and the towel wasn't quite up to the challenge. It covered her breasts, but came distressingly high up on her thighs. I didn't want to get caught gawking again, so I looked away quickly.

"Now I feel human again," she sighed. It would be tempting to say she didn't look human. That was mostly because her hair was hanging down in fuzzy, not quite wet masses. She had obviously just rubbed her head dry with a towel. "Where's my bag? I need a brush."

I pointed mutely toward the bedroom, and she went that way. Caitlin came into the hallway from the living room, where she'd been channel surfing. She saw the open bathroom door.

"Where's Mom?" she asked.

Again, I pointed mutely toward the bedroom. She went in her mother's footsteps.

"Mom!" came her shocked voice. "You're naked!"

"I should have thought to say that this morning," came Hannah's voice. "Caitlin! You're naked!" she aped.

"Uncle Bob's right in there!" hissed Kat.

"I saw him naked. Don't you think it's fair if he gets to see me naked too?"

"No!"

"Jealous?"

"Mom!" That one word communicated much more than a mere form of address. It was a denial.

"What does it matter, then?"

"What if I took my clothes off and pranced around?" asked Caitlin, thinking she was clever.

"He's already seen that. Probably multiple times."

"Mom!" Now it was a word of protest.

"You could use a shower too, Dear," said Hannah. I could just see her, in my imagination, wrinkling her nose.

"So you can be alone with Uncle Bob like that?"

"You are jealous! I'm honored."

"I am not jealous. I just know him. He has a weakness for pretty women."

"Again, I'm honored," said Hannah.

"Mom, you know you're beautiful," snorted Caitlin. "I've told you that hundreds of times."

"You're biased, Darling."

"Well Uncle Bob would think so too," said Kat.

"Shall we ask him?"

"No! You can't go out there like that, Mom!"

"Why not?"

"Because he'd never look at me again," moaned Caitlin.

"Awww, you're so sweet. But you're wrong. Despite what you may think, I know him better than you do. And for him to have been in the situation I found you in this morning, something very important happened. You got under his skin in a way no other woman ever has."

"You don't know that," said Caitlin. "Maybe he has wild sex parties all the time when I'm not there."

"Do you believe that?"

It was silent for several heartbeats.

"No ... but ..."

"But nothing. Bob doesn't let women complicate his life, just like I don't let men complicate mine. We can talk about this later. You stink. Go take that shower."

It was quiet again, until Kat spoke. "Can I get naked, like you, before I go in there?"

I heard a sigh. "My brother is half satyr, and my daughter is a hussy."

"Promise me you'll get dressed before Uncle Bob sees you," said Kat.

"I promise. Now go, naked or not."

A minute later Kat emerged from the bedroom, to find me fiddling with the coffee maker.

"Did you hear any of that?" she asked.

"Any of what?" I replied, innocently.

"Never mind. I'm going to take a shower."

"I figured I'd just go swimming," I said. "It's the same thing."

"Ewwww, no it's not!" she groaned. "That's nasty. You should always shower before you get in the pool."

"Did you do that at my house?"

"That's different," she said, completely convinced that, for some reason, it actually was different. "I won't be long, and then you can take your shower."

"Got it," I said.

"And don't go in the bedroom," she said.

"Okay. Why?"

"Just don't."

"Got it," I said again.

She hadn't closed the door for more than sixty seconds before Hannah came out of the bedroom. She hadn't obviated her promise to Caitlin. She had put something on.

She smiled at me, wearing only a maroon panty and bra set, as she breezed past me to go into the living room, where she settled on the couch and made herself comfortable, before picking up the remote and playing with the TV.

I was in a quandary.

I had been instructed not to go into the bedroom. I was pretty sure that proscription would have been withdrawn, had Kat known the situation. But she didn't. And women are funny, sometimes, about logic.

Still, I was pretty sure that if I made myself comfortable in the living room, as Hannah had, unhappiness would flow like a flash flood in an arroyo like we'd seen so many of coming into New Mexico.

So I made a cup of coffee and sipped it, standing right where I was. Hannah kept looking my way, but I ignored her. That wasn't easy. That bra and panty set looked like it was designed to be worn with one of those slinky evening gowns, that show cleavage reminiscent of the Grand Canyon, and can be worn with a skirt that's slit up to the hip. The panties rose high on her hips, and then plunged in a narrow V to cover the good bits.

I was pretty sure sparks would fly anyway, but at least I wouldn't be caught in the eruption.

Caitlin's shower was a quick one. Maybe she didn't trust her mother. I don't know. What I do know is that she came out wearing a towel too, and looked surprised to see me standing there. Her hair was wet, but not messy, like Hannah's had been. I'd seen her dry her hair, and because it was so long, the way she did it was by letting it hang down in front of her in a mass, and patting it with multiple towels. She could have done a commercial for Lady Godiva Chocolates. And they'd have sold a ton of chocolates.

"Where's Mom?" she asked.

I nodded toward the living room. She looked, and tensed.

"So that's how it's going to be," she muttered.

I remained mute, still trying to stay out of any cross fire that might begin.

Caitlin simply tugged at her towel until it hung, gripped only in one hand.

Then she leaned up and kissed me.

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