Friends

06 February 2012

Trust Not The Vow ... Chapter 16

The annoying thing about Amy's visits was the inconvenience of her timing. She would come at bath time, and bedtime, and once she appeared at the gate as Gary was leaving for work. Sometimes she would arrive minutes after him, almost as if it were planned. Rachel's indignation would bubble inside but she invariably kept quite because Gary always seemed so pleased to see her. This evening, however, a whole hour had passed since dinner before Amy lifted the flap of the letterbox and called: ‘Cooee, anyone at home?’ The unnecessary query made Rachel bristle; it was obvious they were home by the Volkswagen parked in the drive. Gary let her in.

Amy breezed into the living room and plonked her tartan bag on the sideboard, taking from it a pile of shiny knitting patterns. ‘I've brought you these, Rachel. They're the pullovers I made for your Dad. You might find something suitable for Gary.’

‘Thanks,’ Rachel said, somewhat ungraciously.

Gary wandered over to have a look. Taking them from Amy's hand, he began sifting through.

‘I'd rather like a coffee, dear,’ Amy said to Rachel, ‘if it's not too much trouble.’

Rachel withdrew to the kitchen to fill the kettle, leaving the door ajar so that she could join in the conversation. As she spooned coffee into three cups, she heard Gary profess a liking for one of the designs. ‘I like the neckline and the style of sleeves,’ he said.

There was lull for several minutes before Gary asked Amy for her opinion.’ Another pause, then Amy replied: ‘It's sensational, Gary.’

The use of such a dramatic adjective was typical of Amy's new lifestyle. Rachel's curiosity was again aroused about her friend Eve, who must have been instrumental in changing Amy from an irascible woman to an almost theatrical one. Eve was obviously an influence. Rachel couldn't wait to meet her.

Hearing the water coming to the boil, Rachel quickly poured milk into the cups. The deliberations over the patterns were still going on; a sweater with a polo neck being the favourite. Rachel prayed that the design Gary was so cheerfully enthusing over was without decoration and simple to do.

By the time she carried in the tray, Amy had discarded her red coat and was sitting next to Gary on the couch. The withering look Rachel fired at her was received with a grin and a giggle. ‘I've stolen your seat, Rachel.’

Rachel mumbled, ‘Don't be daft,’ and busied herself passing cups and a plate of fancy biscuits.

‘Like the look of this?’ asked Gary, holding the chosen knitting pattern for Rachel to see.

It was an illustration of a perfectly plain, baggy sleeved pullover, modelled by a super looking guy not unlike Gary in features. His eyes, like Gary's, were dark and smouldering, and his dense black lashes were like fans beneath thick eyebrows.

Gary pressed her for an answer. ‘Do you like it, Rachel?’

She didn't actually like it, but she adored the man on the front, so all Rachel said was, ‘I think I might manage to knit that.’

Satisfied, Gary switched on the television and settled back.

Amy immediately put down her cup and placed a hand on Gary's knee. ‘You'd look very nice in it, providing you choose the right wool.’ Leaning sideways, she examined his profile. ‘Green would suit your colouring.’ She turned to Rachel. ‘I've got some lovely emerald green wool I can let you have. I'll bring it over, shall I?’

Resisting the temptation to suggest a specific time, Rachel murmured her thanks and turned her attention to the pattern. She expected her mother to explain the instructions, but Amy had switched her concentration to the sports programme that Gary was watching. There was no further communication until the commercial break.

During a noisy commercial about frozen beef burgers, Amy artlessly commented: ‘I saw you yesterday, Rachel, in Chaplin's Restaurant. With a man!’

Rachel's head shot up.

Dear God! She makes it sound like a clandestine assignation.

Gary's head tilted to one side as he regarded her with interest.

Rachel's words came out in a jumble in her haste to assure him of her fidelity. ‘It was my ... Eric ... boss. Ex, that is.’

‘Lunch, was it?’ Gary asked.

‘Yes.’

‘You didn't tell me.’

‘You weren't here. I won't go again, though. He's too boring.’

‘You should tell your husband these things, Rachel,’ declared Amy.

‘He knows I see the old man occasionally.’

‘Really!’ replied Amy, her eyebrows arched. ‘Then you're a very lucky girl. Your father would not tolerate me seeing another man.’

Maybe not, but he takes everything else you throw at him: unknown new friends and dabbling with the supernatural.

THEY were both tired and went upstairs together. While Gary went to the bathroom to wash, Rachel proceeded to undress.

‘I don't mind you seeing Eric,’ Gary called as he padded along the landing.

Rachel pulled her jumper over her head. ‘I told you, I won't be seeing him again.’

Gary's reply was lost in the sound of running water.

Bending to step into the hateful pyjamas, Rachel caught sight of her naked breasts in the wardrobe mirror. Slowly she brought up her right hand and touched the nipple.

Gargling noises came from the bathroom.

She squeezed the nipple until it hurt, and did the same to the other.

Above the sound of running water, Gary intoned a jaunty melody.

Watching the expression on her face, she slowly straightened, and cupped both breasts.

‘When will the new beds be here?’ Gary enquired from the doorway, his eyes firmly fixed on her face.

Rachel crawled with humiliation. She snapped a reply. ‘When I get round to ordering them.’

As nonchalantly as she could, she donned the pyjama jacket and stepped into the trousers, then quickly clambered into bed.

On his side, Gary removed slippers and sat on the bed to wind the clock. ‘I'm making an early start in the morning. Going north to Cheshire.’ He replaced the clock on the bedside cabinet and switched off his light. ‘Do we really need single beds?’ he asked, seconds before his first muted snore.

Rachel gazed at her husband's naked back. It was all right for him to go without nightclothes, but if she slept in the nude her frustrations would be worse. Of course they didn't need twin beds but how else could she struggle through the nights when he was home.

Changing position brought her knee in touch with his buttock. Lust leapt instantly into her loins. She abruptly bounced out of bed. I can't do it. I can't share his bed, not tonight. Grabbing her dressing gown, she pulled open the bedroom door and bolted down the stairs. It was another room she needed, not a separate bed.

(to be continued)

13 comments:

Brian Miller said...

well...way to leave us hanging there in the end...smiles...lol

Akelamalu said...

Things are going from bad to worse for them:(

Montanagirl said...

Rachel should just tell him "there's the door" and move on with her life! Can't wait for the next chapter!

Valerie said...

Intentionally, Brian

Pearl, indeed, Have you noticed the slight twist in the way the story is going?

Mona, lol it will come

Ron said...

Great cliffhanger, Valerie!

And yes, I did notice the 'slight twist' in the way that the story is going. This is like when I use to watch my favorite nighttime soap, Knots Landing; leaving me eagerly anticipating what was going to happen next week!

Well done, dear lady.

Your writing is very good because every time AMY enters the picture, I want to slap her!

HAHAHAHAHAHAAHA!

Have a great day....X

Valerie said...

Ron, did you ever play a game of hunt the thimble and every time you got near the hiding place someone shouted 'you're getting warm' .... well.....

Have a great Tuesday.

laveta'splace said...

Just came across your site. Read Chapter 16, now I can't wait to go back to the beginning of the story.

Valerie said...

Hi Laveta, and welcome. Thank you for reading the story, hope you enjoyed this chapter.

Diane Fordham said...

Wow Valerie, I am liking this big time! :-)

HermanTurnip said...

Gee, Rachel, way to keep a secret. Yesh! And what other room was she talking about? Hmmm...

Bernie said...

Oh I am so into this story, what next?????? So look forward to each new chapter my friend.....:-)Hugs

Valerie said...

Thank you, Diane. I hope the feeling continues.

septembermom said...

You keep us anxious to read more. Love it! I can't wait to see what happens next.