The women, a brash rebranded blonde and a petite brunette, tottered in heels toward each other, colliding in the kind of embrace shared by friends long separated.
“Ladies,” the cab starter chided, “You want a cab, or what? You can catch up on old times on the way.”
“Yeah, let’s share a cab, Joanie,” said the blonde. “I’m sure glad we met here.”
“Always the frugal one, Kathie.”
“I’m glad you didn’t call me cheap. That was an unfair rap I took back in high school.”
They entered the cab giggling, catching their breath in time to tell the driver their destinations.
“You’re staying at my hotel?” Kathie beamed. “Maybe we can share a room too.”
“Sure,” Joanie said and laughed.
“My god, I can’t believe I’m coming back for this reunion,” Kathie said. “I put all that stuff behind me. Along with three husbands.”
“C’mon, you had a blast in school. You were so popular. I’m the one who felt like the proverbial square peg.”
“Joanie, you were adorable; the guys loved you because you were so shy and modest. You were a challenge.”
“I felt like a freak most of the time. I didn’t think anyone would ever want me.”
“Yeah … I tried to tell you how cute you were … well, lots of water over that bridge … or is it dam? Hey, that reminds me, remember Lucy Brunhaus?”
“Yeah, kinda. Didn’t she used to get teased on account of her ass. Called her Bum-house.”
“Talked to her; she’s coming too. So, she confessed she had a crush on Mr. Russell.”
Joanie drew her thighs together. “Oh my God, Mr. Russell. He was so … beautiful. I think about him a lot, even after all these years.”
“Yeah, well move over, sister. Was there a girl in his class that didn’t have a crush on him? The poor guy must have gone snow blind from all the thigh shows we gave him – the only advantage of wearing those awful tartan skirts.”
“I showed him more than that,” Joanie said, folding her hands in her lap and gazing at them as if waiting her turn in the confessional.
“Huh? Joanie? Omigod! What do you mean?”
Kathie raised her hand before Joanie could respond and glanced at the driver, catching his eyes squinting in the rearview mirror.
“Driver, your tip’s getting smaller, and it’s going to get even smaller each time you scope us in your mirror. Wanna keep your eyes on the road?”
“Sorry, ma’am,” a gravelly voice replied. “Gotta check traffic behind us as well as the front … safety, you know.”
“Yeah, I’ll bet.” Kathie nodded to Joanie to continue her tale.
“Well, I was convinced I was in love with him. I guess we all did, but I was so under his spell. Kathie, just before school got out for good I went to his room before he went home. I told him I couldn’t live without him, and I … I …”
“Omigod, Joanie, what’d you do?”
“I can’t believe I did it … even now. I unbuttoned my blouse … I wasn’t wearing a bra. I shrugged it off my shoulders and stood there, my breasts bare. I even lifted them in my hands to make them seem bigger.”
“Well, hon, you weren’t exactly huge up there.”
“So, what he do?”
“Nothing. He didn’t touch me.”
“God, Joanie, you could have gotten him into so much trouble.”
“I know, but I was as out of my mind with lust as a girl could be. I told him I’d just turned 18, that it would be okay. I told him I wanted him to take my virginity, and that I just wanted to adore him all my life.”
“Oh, Joanie. You’re making me hot just telling me about it.”
“Kathie … my head was floating and my belly was doing flip-flops. Just knowing he was seeing me … half naked. Kathie, I swear I had an orgasm. Just standing there having him look at me. I nearly fainted.”
Kathy glanced at the driver’s rear view and caught him looking again.
“What did he say?” she pressed.
Joanie shook her head. “He said I was very beautiful, but I was just a senior in high school; my life was just starting. He said someday he wouldn’t seem so special, that there would be other men who would cherish me, and that I’d have plenty to choose from. Then he said he felt privileged, like I’d given him a special gift, but that he didn’t deserve it. Then he told me to button up and go home, and never speak of it. Just keep it somewhere in my heart. And, Kathie, I haven’t spoken of it, until this very moment.”
“Jesus, it’s always the quiet ones,” Kathy said, then she turned her head and shouted, “Get all that, driver?”
The driver shrugged.
“Damndest thing, Joanie.”
“Some stupid girl did get him into trouble. Must have done something like you did, but she didn’t take the hint; reported he assaulted her.”
“Yeah, she recanted when her story didn’t add up, but they still forced him to resign. I heard all about it from Lucy.”
“That’s awful. I wish … I wish I could tell him how special he really was to us bunch of silly girls.”
“Yeah, I loved him too, well … except for that time he embarrassed me when I only tossed in a quarter to one of those charities he kept passing the jar for. What did he say to me? Something about quarters … oh well.”
The cab drew up to their hotel.
“Twenty even, ladies,” the cabbie said.
Kathie reached in and handed him a twenty dollar bill and a quarter.
“You can consider all the whack-off material we provided you as the rest of your tip, ya pervert.”
She and Joanie turned to enter the hotel. As the cabbie pulled away he shouted, “Still tossing quarters around like manhole covers, eh, Kathie?”
The women stopped, spun around and said as one, “Oh, my God!”
© 2013 Robert Buckley. All rights reserved. Content may not be copied or used in whole or part without written permission from the author.