tagRomanceKaren's Tale Ch. 04

Karen's Tale Ch. 04


The attempted break in and Justin slipped from my mind as nothing further happened over the next few weeks. Winter break ended and James returned to his studies. He landed a work-study job and was able to quit Denny's, so his evenings were free, as were mine. Although free was a relative term... James still had to work on his thesis. Which left me plenty of time to cook for us. I loved to cook for others and had missed that while living alone. We usually spent several week nights at James' apartment so he could work and most weekends at mine as it was bigger and homier. Heidi continued to be delighted with James, and Bruce shared the sentiment.

One evening in February, as I was serving tortilla soup, James mentioned his parents' anniversary celebration. I stopped, mid-ladle.

"A party?" I hadn't heard anything about this before.

"Yeah, next Saturday. I said you could come. You'll be done with work, right?"

"James, I have no idea what you're talking about. What party?"

"Didn't I say? My parents' 32nd wedding anniversary."

"Who will be there?"

"Everybody," he said calmly.

I couldn't contain myself. "James! You said I would attend a party without asking me first, without even telling me about it?"

He seemed startled.

I tried to keep my voice even. "James, you can't just assume I'll go wherever you want me to go. You need to ask me first."

Now he looked crushed. "You don't want to go? I mean, no, of course I should have asked. I thought... I thought you'd want to meet my family."

"I want to go, I want to meet them, but you need to consult me first. And not 4 days before hand."

He appeared so contrite, I softened and kissed his cheek.

"Now tell me who will be there, what I need to wear and whether a gift is appropriate. I need to know these things before attending a party."

It turned out to be a low-key affair, just the immediate family, no need for gifts or fine clothes. That cut two ways... I wouldn't be overwhelmed by a huge to-do, but I'd be stuck in close quarters if his family didn't like me.


James picked me up on time and we headed off for our party. As we drove further into his parents' neighborhood, my nervous anticipation turned into apprehension. This was more than nice neighborhood, it was a bastion of wealth. This was not what I had expected. Passing through the cast iron gate, we ascended shallow steps up to the beveled glass door. When James opened it for me and I entered the house, I found it was furnished with antiques and Persian rugs. I suspected many of the finest pieces had been in the family for generations.

James had never mentioned his family had money. But I guess, to James, it wasn't important or noteworthy. Which said good things about him, but left me a bit wrong-footed. I was glad I had already wanted to make the best impression I could. Well, of course I did. And what did money really matter? If James didn't care, why should I? I still felt intimidated.

I was introduced around... I met Doug, the eldest, and his wife Sarah; Ian, the middle son, with his wife Janine; and all five of James' nephews. And finally, his parents: his mother, Aileen and his father, Douglas Sr.

The siblings were polite and his nephews passed in a blur, but I really warmed to his mother. She greeted me with both hands and said she'd been wanting to meet me for quite a while; I was flattered. His father was a red-faced, good-natured man who surprised me with a kiss on the cheek.

Over dinner, I saw not all were so pleased with me. Sarah and Janine were quite warm and friendly. Ian was much like James, cheerful and good company. But Doug was distant and frowned when he looked my way.

After dinner I found out why. We raised the usual toasts and then adjourned to the living room. The eldest nephew, DJ, was 6. He came to stand next to me, looked up with awe and said, "You work at a toy store?" I said I did and his eyes widened. "And you can play with toys all day?"

"Well, no, I have to work when I'm there." He looked disappointed. "But you could come visit me and I'll show you the trains."

He perked up. "And you have a lot of gold?"

"Gold?" I was puzzled.

"Daddy says you're a gold-digger." I identified DJ... Douglas James the third, Doug's son.

"No, honey, I don't have a lot of gold. Your father was just kidding." Sarah had been watching this interchange and looked mortified. Doug was oblivious, his back to me, talking to his father. Well, that explained a lot. I pretended not to notice Sarah had been following the conversation and determinedly focused on DJ, asking him about his favorite toys. She had seemed so welcoming... but she didn't necessarily hold her husband's views.

Returning from a visit to the powder room, I was glad I hadn't been judgmental. Sarah caught me in the foyer. She apologized for DJ's indiscretion. I laughed as casually as I could and said "Little pitchers have big ears."

"What DJ didn't mention was that Doug and I disagreed about that; it was actually a pretty big argument." I could tell she was sincere.

"Sarah, I couldn't be a gold-digger because I had no idea there was gold to be dug. I thought James was a penniless grad student."

"I knew that. James would never mention it. He doesn't seem to notice much about money." That was certainly true. "Doug thinks every woman walks around with a list of Forbes' most eligible tycoons, checking last names."

That didn't paint a pretty picture, but I was glad Sarah had told me. She pressed my hand and said, "Thank you for not holding this against me."

To lighten things up, I suggested she bring DJ to see the model trains. We had quite a big display in the window.

"I will," she promised.


"I'm all wound up," I declared. "Let's stop at Molly's on the way home." The party had ended early; we were on our way out by 10. I let James drive, feeling stressed out and wired.

Molly's was packed. We were lucky to nab a single stool at a high table covered with empties. I asked James get me an Irish coffee. I luxuriously sipped the sweet coffee and whiskey through the thick layer of cream and felt myself relaxing immediately. James stood next to me, drinking an O'Hara's stout with a noble head on it. He accumulated a mustache of foam with his first sip. I wiped it off for him, then gave him a long kiss. I was happy to be away from Doug and all the tension. I hugged James, putting my head on his shoulder. James' arms around me felt like heaven. I felt so safe, so sheltered and cared for. Suddenly all I wanted to do was get home and get our clothes off, to be skin to skin, to be joined.

I communicated this general idea to James with a whisper, an ardent kiss and a well-placed squeeze; he enthusiastically agreed. We abandoned our half full glasses and hurried to the car, giggling together, arms around each other. James' apartment was closest so we headed there.

Once inside the apartment, I pushed James down on the couch, laughing, and straddled his lap.

"Ride 'em cowgirl!" I exuberantly jounced on James' knees. I whipped my shirt off and he began licking my breasts through the sheer mesh bra. That came off too and he burrowed in my cleavage. His hands seemed to touch me everywhere at once, breasts, back, arms, sides, waist and ass. I bounced gently, making my breasts dance. When I bent down to kiss him, it was like fire in my veins. I hitched up my skirt, which had already crept far up my thighs, and crammed my crotch against the tent in his pants, rubbing energetically back and forth. He got his fingers under my panties and squeezed my bare ass.

I struggled to unzip James' pants, releasing him. I stroked him firmly, his hardon getting harder by the moment. He had found a way to sneak his thumb into the leg hole of my underwear and was massaging my clitoris. I jumped up, stepped out of my panties and yanked his pants and shorts down to his ankles. Not even bothering to remove my skirt I remounted his lap and placed his hand between my legs, while my jiggling breasts bounced in front of his face. I fed a nipple into his mouth as both of his hands were busy down below.

When he plunged two fingers into my wet hole, I couldn't stand it any longer. I guided his cock into me and slid down his pole until he was in me up to the hilt. I began my ride slowly, relishing the feel of him stroking my inner walls. His hands were on my ass, mouth latched onto one nipple. I rose up so that only his head was buried in me, then slid all the way down again. I did this several times, then settled down, rocking back and forth until I found my sweet spot. Rubbing my clit I bounced gently as heat built higher and higher. James had his hands on my nipples while I moved faster and harder. I felt like every part of me was under delicious assault. It didn't take long to reach an unbearable frenzy of pleasure that exploded into orgasm. I kept moving and another orgasm crashed over me, then another. As my muscles clamped down on him, I heard him reach his own climax. I collapsed onto his shoulders, my cheek against his. When my panting slowed, I dismounted and came to rest next to him. He put his arm around me and I snuggled up close.

Eventually, as my eyes drooped, I said, "Let's go to bed, sweetheart." We walked back to the bedroom hand in hand. I settled into his arms. He kissed my hair and absently said, as I was on the verge of sleep, "I love you Karen." I mumbled, "You, too," snuggled closer and then slipped into sleep.


I was staring into the dark, bolted out of sleep by something. James was sitting up too. We both looked into the darkness, not saying anything, waiting; then we heard the breaking glass. I lunged for the phone, reacting more quickly than James. I was stabbing out 911 as he scrambled out of bed. He plunged into the closet, coming out with a baseball bat. We heard a curse and tinkling glass, then the distinct sound of the French door in the living room rattling open. My heart was pounding and my back suddenly felt cold. I slid off the bed and ducked down, taking the phone with me.

"911 what is your emergency?"

I said in a low voice, "Someone is breaking in, it's my ex, it's Justin Lender."

The operator started the litany of question and answer, then I heard Justin's hoarse voice calling my name. James gestured me down, bat at the ready. The operator continued asking if this was the James McDowell, 1808 Stone Street residence as I plastered myself to the floor. I whispered, "Yes."

"Karen I know you're here. I know you're here, you whore. I know you're fucking him. Goddammit, where the fuck are you?"

More crunching glass, heavy footsteps. I couldn't see what James was doing as I squeezed myself under the bed, taking the phone with me. The operator was asking another question, I couldn't hear what. I saw James' feet, braced like a batter ready for a ball.

The footsteps hesitated, then came down the hall. I watched as James' feet twisted, heard his grunt, heard a sick thump, then a deafening shot. James had hit Justin but oh shit, Justin had a gun. I whispered, "Gun," into the receiver, then covered the earpiece with my hand. Another thump and then a clatter as Justin dropped the gun and it spun across the floor, oh shit, right under the bed. I grabbed it up, scooted backwards from under the bed and jumped up, pointing the gun straight ahead. They were wrestling with the bat between them. Justin was succeeding in getting it under James' chin and pinning him to the wall.

"Jesus fuck, drop it, let him go!" I bellowed. Justin half turned and with this distraction, James kneed Justin in the nuts. Justin dropped the bat and hunched over. Like an arrow, James flew to my side, jumping right over the bed.

"Stop right there, mother fucker." My voice had murder in it. The trigger started to move just a tiny bit under my finger.

"Karen, don't do it, he's stopped, don't shoot him," James' voice was calm, but I could sense tension.

Justin, still hunched over, had put his hands up in a comical imitation of how it is done on TV. We stood that way for I don't know how long, until my arms started shaking. I relaxed my finger, uncurled it from the trigger and lowered my arm. I became aware of sirens in the distance, coming closer. We all listened raptly. Finally pulsing lights appeared and then the police burst in.

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