Serendipity - Version Charlie
Chapters : 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | Epilogue
Hannah was saved from more trauma by the arrival of the food. We got to meet Robin in the process, since she helped bring it all to our table. Robin was no hag either. Her white outfit hid her body, and her chef's hat hid her hair, but her face suggested the same fine genes as those Julie had inherited. She had my order in one hand, and eyes that were greener than any I had seen before pinned me in my seat.
"You would be the virgin, Bob, from Oklahoma, yes? You look like a veal kind of man."
"Good food and a mentalist show," I said. "Will there be magic tricks after dinner?"
She smiled. "Of a sort. We will magically lighten your wallet."
"His wallet," I said, pointing at Phil.
"Mister Anderson's wallet," she said, her smile never faltering.
"He never told you our last name," said Caitlin, looking up from her plate.
"Mister Anderson dined with us two months ago, in the company of Mister Roger Curtiss. We offered the B menu that day and Mister Anderson chose the Mediterranean Chicken with rice pilaf. Mister Curtiss paid the bill, and Mister Anderson left a generous tip."
"How'd you do that?" asked Caitlin.
"She has a photographic memory," said Julie, as she served Hannah. "She likes to show off, too."
"It's not a photographic memory," said Robin, frostily.
"I know, I know," said Julie. "It's hyperthymesia, but nobody's ever heard of that, and you always have to explain it to them, which takes time and right now I think they want to eat instead of discussing semantics."
"It's not semantics!" said Robin as the two of them walked away.
Julie was right, though. Suddenly, all interest in talking vanished as we dug into our food.
There was only one other indication that Hannah was still in distress during dinner.
When Julie returned to the table with wines selected to go with each patron's food (even Caitlin's) and she said she'd remove the other drinks, Hannah reached for mine and put a hand over hers before Julie could touch them.
"I'll just keep them for after dinner," she said, looking a little flushed.
The ride home was uneventful.
At least, initially.
I think that's because, while the portions were modest, the amount of taste Robin crammed into the food she served made it seem like we'd eaten like Kings.
Of course there had been dessert. When Julie came back to inquire as to whether we were happy, she found four relaxed, almost dazed people, leaning back in their chairs, just staring at empty plates.
"How are we doing?" she asked.
"That was fantastic," sighed Hannah.
"Did we leave room for dessert?"
"I remember something about pistachios and chocolate from the menu," said Caitlin.
"That would be our Pistachio Cannoli, which is a crisp pastry shell filled with sweetened mascarpone, chocolate and pistachios," said Julie smoothly.
"I couldn't," moaned Hannah.
"I want that," said Caitlin.
"Want to share one?" asked Phil, looking at me.
"If the dessert is anything like the meal, it might actually cause a pleasure overload," I said.
"We have to die sooner or later," said Phil.
"No dying," said Hannah.
"Not in our restaurant," agreed Julie.
"Not any time soon," said Hannah.
"You can taste it here, and then take some of it home," suggested Julie. "It keeps very well in the fridge."
"Two servings," said Phil.
Which is why all four of us had the taste of chocolate in our mouths as we wandered out of The Hag's Cauldron.
We wandered because we just didn't have any interest in doing anything more energetic.
It was dark on the way home.
Hannah reclined her seat a little, to lie back.
Caitlin reached and put her hand not on my leg, but on my pants, directly over my penis.
"I can only think of one thing that could make things better after that meal," she said, squeezing my cock.
I picked up her hand and moved it back to her own lap.
"What's that, sweetie?" asked her father, moving his head in that way that told me he was looking into the back seat via his rear view mirror.
"Sleep," sighed Hannah.
"Don't you dare go to sleep," said Phil. "I just dropped a bundle on you, and a guy who drops a bundle on his date should be able to expect something in return."
"I love you," she said, rolling her head towards him.
"It's wonderful to hear that, but I was thinking of a way you could show me you love me," he said, with a leer in his voice.
"Hey, you two," said Caitlin. I saw her hand move and again, she grabbed my cock and squeezed it. "Get a room or something."
"Don't you worry about us," said Phil. "You might be almost grown up, but you don't need to be thinking about that kind of thing. Not yet. You're much too young."
"How old do I have to be to start thinking about that kind of thing?" asked Kat lightly, as I removed her hand again.
"Twenty-five," said Phil.
"Twenty five?" screeched Caitlin.
"Okay ... thirty."
"Ha ... Ha," said Caitlin.
"Okay," he said, turning a corner. "We'll compromise. You can start dating after you graduate." Kat took in breath but he spoke again before she could. "From college," he added.
"I already date, Daddy," she said, sweetly.
"Who let you start doing that?" he groaned.
"You did," she said, just as sweetly.
"Well I was wrong," he said.
"Boy, howdy," said Hannah.
Thankfully, we were back home at that point, so he had no chance to ask her why she'd said that.
I was in the guest bedroom. It was probably around midnight, though my watch was on the night stand and I couldn't see it. We had sat up in the living room, sipping more wine until ten. The conversation had been simple. Phil asked about Kat's visit with me, and she reeled off a dozen things she'd done. Then she'd steered the subject in another direction by asking about people I'd never heard of and they brought her up to date on them and others. At ten I had decided that going to bed precipitously was probably the best way to avoid Caitlin wanting to "say goodnight" to me in some dangerous way, so I just stood and told them I was bushed and was hitting the sack.
I wasn't tired when I got to the guest bedroom, so I changed into the shorts I'd intended to sleep in on our camping trip (but never did) and lay down to read the book I was currently carrying around in case I had some time to kill, somewhere. They had the AC turned down a lot more than I did at home, and I had just pulled the sheet over me when I saw the door open in my peripheral vision. I thought it was Kat, and turned my head to scold her and tell her to leave.
It was Hannah.
"You still awake?" she asked.
"Yeah," I said. I had a pretty good idea what she wanted.
"You got a minute?" she asked.
"Of course," I said, steeling myself for what I was sure was going to be a very unhappy conversation. I had no idea what I was going to do if she started throwing around ultimatums. I could probably deal with that, but I was sure Kat would not react well at all. True, she'd eventually get over it, but it would be fiery for a while until she did.
She came to sit on the side of the bed, while I scooted over to give her more room. She sat with her hands in her lap and stared around the room, as if she were trying to commit it to memory. I gave her time to get around to whatever she was going to say.
"How did this happen?" she finally asked.
"I thought Kat already told you," I said.
"When did you start calling her Kat?" she asked. "We don't call her that."
"It's just a nickname," I said.
"I want to hear your side of it," she said.
I thought. Things had happened so fast that it all seemed a blur in my mind. She gave me time to answer too.
"We've always been close," I started off. "I think it was because, when she wanted to do boy things, I let her. She said she didn't get to do that at home. I think maybe that had a big impact on her."
"You're right. She came home after that first summer and said she might just marry you some day," said Hannah.
"We've always had a good time together," I said.
"And we never complained," said Hannah. "We think about raising a girl differently than you do, but Phil and I agreed that different wasn't bad. Though, I have to admit, there have been times when we cursed you a bit. She can be very stubborn when she comes back from visiting you, and wants to keep doing some of the things you let her do."
"Like what?" I asked, genuinely curious.
"Like climb mountains," said Hannah, her voice flat. "We have lots of them here, and she says they're much more spectacular than the ones in Oklahoma."
"Actually, all we did was some light rock climbing," I said. "We climbed at Quartz Mountain, which is maybe two thousand feet tall, and we got nowhere near the top of that. The mountains we have are old and rounded off, compared to what you guys have out here on the west coast."
"Phil and I have always been scared to death something would happen to her," said Hannah. "I'd say you know how it is with parents, but maybe you don't."
"Probably not," I said. "I just saw her as a capable girl, who wanted to try things. I wanted to help her succeed."
"Respect," said Hannah, softly. "Thoughtfulness. Things most women appreciate." She looked down at me. "Things valuable in the seduction of a woman."
"I didn't try to seduce her," I said.
"I know. You didn't have to. All you did was be the kind of man a woman loves to be around."
"I didn't even know it was happening," I said.
"I believe that too," she said. "Go on."
"Things happened that I wasn't aware of," I said, tentatively. I was now going on what Kat had told me.
"Well ... she swam in my pool a lot. And along about two or three years ago, she started wearing bikinis. Actually, she'd always worn them, but she started looking different in them. And I noticed that."
"And you stared," suggested Hannah.
"I didn't think I stared. In fact, I tried not to stare. I mean you know what guys do. We wear sunglasses, and look out of the sides of our eyes and all that."
"Is that what guys do?" asked Hannah, smiling.
"Well sure. Don't women watch men too?"
"Of course we do," she said.
"Well, anyway, I guess she saw me looking after all. That's what she told me."
"She told me that too," agreed Hannah.
"And I guess she didn't mind," I said, lamely.
Hannah stared, and said nothing. I went on, just to fill the silence.
"Anyway, this year was the first time anything actually happened. It was an accident, really. We were playing tennis and she twisted her ankle, and when I went to examine it, she ... uh ... didn't have anything on under ... she was wearing a skirt and she hadn't put on any ... panties."
"And you saw up her skirt," said Hannah.
Well, she definitely noticed that I had seen her ... um ... there. And that led to a conversation. We've always been able to talk about pretty much anything, so this wasn't that much harder. And I was worried that I might have scared her or something, and I didn't want her to be afraid of me. But somehow we ended up talking about the fact that she'd had a fantasy or two about me, and that I'd had a fantasy or two about her, and it ended up being a very personal conversation that I don't think either of us ever actually intended to have."
Hannah stared down at me for a long time. When she spoke, it wasn't what I expected to hear her say.
"You poor, poor man."
"I should say, you poor, misguided, trusting man," she said.
"The vast majority of what you just told me wasn't accidental."
"Yes it was," I insisted.
"Maybe on your part. But not on my daughter's part. She wanted all that to happen."
"She had a crush on me, Hannah. And things happened that exacerbated that crush."
"She caused things to happen that exacerbated that crush," corrected my sister.
"Such as," I prompted.
"Such as going without underwear on purpose."
"Well that was just an experiment," I said.
"That was to be around you without any panties on," said Hannah. "She admitted it to me." She looked at one wall. "Then, when she hurt her ankle, she knew that if she asked you to look at it, you would, and that she could arrange it so that you could 'accidentally' see her, shall we say, condition?"
"Really?" I frowned. "I thought that first time was an accident. I mean I knew she let me look, the second time. I didn't understand that, then. When we talked about it later I realized that, like me, she'd thought about doing things ... not doing them, but having a fantasy. Do you understand?"
"Oh yes," sighed my sister. "I understand, perfectly. In fact, what happened may have some kind of strange genetic component."
"What are you talking about?" I asked.
"When we were young, there were times when I found my big brother to be ... um ... attractive," she said. I saw her blush.
"You're crazy. You hated me."
"On the contrary, I loved you desperately," she said. "I didn't understand those feelings, and they scared me, so I lashed out at you and tried to make it your fault."
"When did this happen?" I asked.
"When I was fourteen. You were sixteen, and could drive, and date. It seemed like you got to do everything I wanted to do, but couldn't. And you had a girlfriend. Remember? Gina Harkness?"
I nodded. Gina and I had gone together for almost a year.
"I hated her. I spied on you two. I watched her kiss you, and I wanted to pull her hair out. I was scared to kiss a boy, but I knew it would be okay if I kissed you. I knew you wouldn't laugh at me if I did it wrong. You were always so nice to me, even though I was hateful to you."
"Mom and dad told me it was my job to be patient with you," I said.
"Well you were. You were patient, and kind. You even offered to let me go with you places."
"You never went," I said.
"Because I was going crazy inside," she sighed. "You don't know what puberty can do to a girl. I loved you, and I hated you, all at the same time. I wanted to do things with you, Bob. And I knew it was wrong to want to do those things."
"What kind of things?" I asked, raising an eyebrow.
"If you'd have known what I was going through, you could have done anything you wanted with me," she said, softly.
"Wow," I said. "I didn't know."
"And it's a good thing you didn't," she said. "If you'd have known, you'd have ended up doing with me what you've done with my daughter."
"Wow," I said again. "I want to say I'm sorry I did that to you, but that seems silly, now."
"Oh, it didn't last," said Hannah. "By the time I was sixteen, I was over you. I still loved you, but I didn't want to lose my virginity to you anymore. I think that had something to do with the fact that, as you got older, you were around less, and you kind of were a dickhead in your senior year." She smiled.
"Thanks for telling me," I said. I frowned. "At least I think I'm glad you did."
"The reason I told you is so that you'll understand how I can understand why my daughter fell for you in the same way I did."
"Look," I said. "I know I screwed up. I can't do anything about that. Right now, I don't know whether to hope her crush on me passes, or be sad because I think that's what will happen."
Again, she looked at me for a long while.
"You poor, poor man," she said again.
"Why do you keep saying that?" I asked.
"Because she's a lot older than I was when she decided she wanted you to be the one. She's no flighty fourteen-year-old, Bob. She's a young woman who believes she's in love with a man, the same man she believes she's been in love with since puberty."
"But it has to be a crush," I said, frustrated because I believed it, and yet wished it wasn't true. "Girls her age fall in and out of love twenty times a year."
"Most girls do," agreed Hannah. "But I know at least five or six women I went to school with who married their high school sweetheart, and are still happily married today."
"But I'm not her high school sweetheart," I argued.
"Oh, Bob," sighed, my sister, putting her hand on my chest. "You're much, much more than that to her now."
I closed my eyes. This was the kind of thing I wanted to believe. I was scared to believe it, because there was always the possibility that she really would come to the conclusion that boys her own age were more interesting than I was. But I wanted to believe it.
"Are you sure?" I asked.
"I know my daughter," said Hannah. "She's stubborn, and independent, and intelligent. She's loyal to a fault. Everything that happened in the last month was something she wanted to happen, something she's been working toward for years. She convinced me of that tonight, before I came to talk to you, but I should have known it anyway. There's no way you could have hoodwinked her, or gotten her to do something she didn't already want to do. If you think about it, you'll agree. You're practically a stranger to her, compared to me, but even you know she won't do something she thinks is wrong, and won't be forced into anything, right or wrong."
I nodded. Everything she'd said was the same way I'd have described Caitlin.
"So what do we do?" I asked.
She looked conflicted for ten or fifteen seconds, before she answered.
"I still think she's too young. I can't help that. And while I know she loves you with all her heart, part of me says she needs to compare you to other men, to find out what other men are like. I'm going to put her on the pill." She looked away and swallowed. "Assuming your completely negligent behavior hasn't already gotten me a grandbaby. Which, by the way, I am entirely too young to be a grandmother, and I'll thank you to remember that." She sighed. "I'll get her in to see the doctor about that as soon as possible." She looked back at me. "After that, I'm going to insist she date boys her own age. I want her last year with us to be as normal as possible. There are things she needs to experience in her own social group that will be important to her later in life."
It killed me to do it, but I nodded.
"I'm not going to tell her to have sex with other men," said Hannah. She blinked. "How stupid does that sound? Of course I wouldn't tell my daughter to go out and have sex." She shook her head. "But at the same time, I'm going to tell her that sex is now her choice. She made the decision to become sexually active, and now she owns that decision. Do you understand me, Bob? If she decides to let another man ... a boy ... into her life in that manner, we can't condemn her. She chose you, Bob, but you have to let her keep choosing you. That's how real love works."
"I get that," I said. "And I agree. She needs to be a senior in high school, not the mistress of some older guy."
"That's horrible!" said Hannah.
"You know what I mean," I said.
"I want her to go to college, Bob," said Hannah.
"I do too."
"Do you think a long range relationship will last five years?" It was obvious she did not.
"I hope so," I said. "It's been working for the last five years."
She blinked, startled.
"I suppose you're right. But it changes once you've ..." She blushed again and I was astonished to see her nipples stiffen under the thin cloth of the top she was wearing. I realized for the first time that Hannah was in her pajamas. Apparently, just the thought of sex got her going.
"I don't have a girlfriend, Hannah," I said.
"I know that. That's one of the reasons she fell so hard for you. In her adolescent mind, you wanted her, and no other woman would do. You had to want her, because you were so obviously attractive, and yet you never let another woman into your life. At least not like you welcomed her into your life. That's how she thought of it."
"What I mean is that I can go without sex," I said.
"Yes," said Hannah, standing up. Her nipples were still spiked. "But can she?"
She turned to go and I stopped her by calling her name, softly.
"What about Phil?"
"He can't know," she said. "He must never know. He would not take that well. Not now. Not while she's this young."
"And what if it does work, and five years from now, what happens makes it obvious to him?"
"We'll cross that bridge when we get to it," said Hannah. "Good night."
"Night," I said.
She opened the door and then paused. When she turned to step back towards me, she was flushed again, and her nipples looked like they must be an inch long under her PJs. She came on bare feet to the bed, and leaned down to kiss my startled lips. It wasn't a peck. Her lips communicated interest, at a minimum, and the hint of passion, possibly. Just as my instinct kicked in to return it, she pulled back.
"Thank you for making my daughter's first time something sweet, that she'll love remembering for the rest of her life. So few girls get to have a good experience the first time. ”
"You're welcome," I whispered.
She stood up and I saw her look where the sheet covered my groin. With a groan I realized those nipples and that kiss had made me stiff. I looked to see the tent she was looking at.
"It's nice to know I still have it," she said, almost giggling.
"Oh, you still have it," I said, resisting the urge to reach and lay my cock down, so the tent would disappear.
I knew that was the right thing to say to the sister who had just cut me so much slack.
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