He oughtn’t to have such thoughts, he scolded himself. Not about a girl young enough to be his granddaughter. Not that he suffered any sense of guilt; she didn’t — couldn’t — make him feel guilty. He supposed she regarded him as a harmless old guy, just another denizen of the dog park to whom she offered an easy smile and light conversation. So many times she had glanced his way while he was assessing her lithe young body, yet there was nothing awkward about such moments when they occurred. He felt no shame at being caught, as he might on a subway car, surreptitiously surveilling a young woman who unexpectedly met his gaze, and who in turn cast the sort of withering look that made a man avert his eyes and pretend he really wasn’t looking at her.
Everything about this girl was soft and easy: her voice, her brown eyes and hair, the disarming smile that put one right at ease, the careless grace with which she moved. If she had any flaw it might be that she was just a bit too skinny. He imagined treating her to a few dozen cheeseburgers at a single session and repeating the process until she filled out.
Still, that overall, even overpowering sense of softness about her, made him wonder what it might be like to let his hands roam over her body, to savor her touch, her young girl’s skin. He had even daydreamed about lying next to her; she spooned against him as he shielded her nakedness. No, he oughtn’t to be having such thoughts about a girl so young. He had always thought one day such yearnings would shut down and he would become another paternal old yegg, a kindly grandfatherly wreck biding his time, his brain long since incapable of conjuring a lustful thought. But he was learning the hard way that yearning perseveres long past the point when a man is able to satisfy it.
“Tommy, you’d have to swallow a case of Viagra to keep up with that little kitten.”
The voice was wet and phlegmy, more like a gargle. Annoyed that his reverie had been interrupted he turned to admonish its owner, sitting right next to him on the bench.
“Henry, you asshole.”
Henry only cackled, then coughed in reply, hauled up a wad a yellow mucous from his throat and ejected it like a mortar.
Tommy winced. “And you got no fucking class either.”
“Aw, whacha thinking, that you got something special going with that little girl over there?”
“Will you shut up? I don’t want her hearing any such garbage.”
“Well the way you been mooning over her …”
“I ain’t been mooning …”
“Aw, kiss my ass.”
“Bet you’d like to kiss hers.”
“Henry, I’ll knock you off that bench.”
“Aw, pipe down. It ain’t like I blame you. She’s a pretty little thing; kinda skinny … no ass to speak of, nor tits.”
“Aw, c’mon, it ain’t like she’s your girlfriend or something.” Henry began to cackle and then coughed up another plug of phlegm.
“Are you gonna die?”
“Nope,” Henry said, recovering.
“Heard her the other day talking about her boyfriend … bet you didn’t know that.”
“That she has a boyfriend.”
“So what? A girl like that’s bound to have a boyfriend … probably a bunch of them. Henry, what the hell do you come down here for? Your dog died more than a year ago.”
Henry winced, and his grin crumpled. Tommy immediately regretted his remark.
“Hey, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean it the way it came out.”
Henry nodded and shrugged. “I know. Poor Barney, I miss him. I guess I’d just miss your company, Tommy, if I stopped coming, you and your old mutt.”
Tommy glanced down where Brewster lay beneath the bench. A god-awful mix of basset hound and pit bull, Brewster had been dumped on him and Helen two years before by her nephew, whom they hadn’t seen nor heard from since. He had no idea how old the dog was; he didn’t like to play with the other dogs and was otherwise low maintenance, preferring to sleep most of the day.
He reached down and scratched him behind one ear. Brewster emitted a low frequency hum from deep in his chest. Tommy couldn’t tell if it was meant to convey pleasure or annoyance.
Tommy sat back. “Henry, please, don’t be talking about the girl like that. She’s a nice kid; I like to talk with her. I don’t want her thinking I’m some dirty old guy ogling her.”
“Yeah, sure. I was just pulling your leg. Better than pulling your pud.”
Tommy shrugged. “Wish I could.”
“Go on. Don’t be telling me that. You gotta have your stock of blue boys.”
“The V. Best thing they ever invented. Can’t tell you how many I go through in a week. You know, I’m trying for one of them four-hour boners they tell you about in the commercials, except I ain’t going to a doctor, I’m going on a tear.”
“What a load of shit!”
“The hell it ain’t!”
“The hell it is. Those pills ain’t worth a pig’s fart. Make ’em out like they’re some kind of wonder drug. Four-hour hard-ons — in your dreams.”
“Well, they sure work for me.”
“Oh, they do? And what do you do with your chemically induced boner, Henry?”
“Well, I … I … well just the other day … uh …”
“Henry, you’re older than dirt and you got a face that matches my dog’s ass. You gonna tell me that women are falling over themselves to jump in the sack with you?”
“Well no … not exactly, but you never know. A man needs to know he’s ready, just in case.”
“In case of what? What the hell do you expect is gonna happen?”
“Um … maybe some dame, you know, is kinda really needing some, maybe … I dunno, in the grocery store …”
“You think some broad’s gonna jump your bone in the grocery store? Just randomly show up so horny she’d be beyond caring who or what the hell she jumped? You been watching those silly porn movies, haven’t you? You think that shit’s real?”
Henry screwed his lips into snarl. “You know, Tommy, you’re sure a sour old bastard.”
“I got plenty of reasons.”
The two men settled into a simmering silence.
“Lila!” The girl was calling her dog, a lively little brown mutt with white paws like stockings. The dog followed her toward the gate. She smiled at the two men as she passed.
“See ya tomorrow, guys. Gotta get to work.”
They smiled back and waved.
“Have a great day, dear,” Tommy called, his eyes tracing the roll of her hips, like swells on the ocean. Skinny hips, but they moved with such careless ease. Henry was right; she didn’t have much of a derriere. But he could imagine his palms hefting each small cheek — soft, smooth handfuls of heavenly girl.
“Thanks. You too,” she replied without looking back.
His eyes tracked her through the gate and along the fence toward the parking lot.
Finally, he turned and sighed. “I better get going too.”
“How’s things with you and the missus?” Henry said it as casually as if he were remarking on the weather.
Tommy turned toward him. “What do you care?”
“Sorry. None of my business. I just figured … you know, when you said those pills weren’t worth shit.”
“Well … they aren’t.”
“So … you tried ’em?”
Tommy started to rise from the bench, but he settled back down.
“Yeah, I tried them. So what?”
Henry tugged at his chin. “You mean … they didn’t work for you, not at all?”
Tommy shrugged. “I guess they may have given me a little boost, but …” He shrugged again.
“Gee, sorry, Tommy.”
“What are you sorry for?”
“I dunno. I guess I just … kinda …”
“Tell me you feel sorry for me and I really will knock you off this bench.”
“Hey, I don’t mean nothing. I just thought …”
Tommy’s scowl put an end to Henry sharing his thought.
“I’m out of here. C’mon, Brewster, let’s go.”
“See ya tomorrow?” Henry asked. There was something of a plea in his question.
Tommy shuffled toward the gate with Brewster plodding behind. From there it was a short walk home, but each day it became a little longer for Brewster.
“Whadda I gotta do, pick you up and carry you?” Tommy said to the malingering mutt. The dog raised his head and paused as if assenting to Tommy’s suggestion.
“Not likely. C’mon, pooch, you can nap the rest of the day once we get home.”
Tommy slowed his pace to accommodate his canine companion and wondered if they’d ever get home. At least a cool breeze helped push them along.
Tommy’s thoughts returned to the girl. He wondered if her boyfriend could even appreciate what he had, how rare and wonderful a creature she was. Of course, he would be young too, and virile. Probably the type of kid who attracted pretty girls anyway. Jaded, did he take her for granted?
“None of my damned business,” he mumbled to himself and paused to wait for Brewster to catch up.
His thoughts ranged far back into his teens. He wasn’t the type of kid who attracted girls, shy, gawky. But he worshipped them for being mystical, ethereal creatures. Then he remembered the first girl who let him touch her, his freshman year in college.
With painful clarity he recalled a wintry day on a bench outside her dorm. She let him slide his hands beneath her sweater and the tee shirt beneath it where they encountered that silkaceous, wondersome, heart-capturing touch of young girl’s skin. He reveled in the sensation, flattening his palms against her back and pulling her to his chest. When his fingertips grazed the clasp of her bra she shook him off and admonished him with her eyes, but she quickly relented and let him explore her back again.
In time she would let him unfasten the clasp, albeit awkwardly, and allow his hands to explore her belly and breasts and thighs. She took his virginity in a pile of quilts and sheets while her roommate was away.
She transferred to another school before the end of winter. She said goodbye, that’s all. No promises to keep in touch. It left him bewildered, that she could just walk away so casually, taking her magic with her.
There would be other girls and women. And each held that same singular magic for him. And always mere touching was more thrilling than actual sex, although he was gratified that they found him a satisfying as well as ardent lover.
Helen was no different, the first time she shed her clothes for him. His caresses neglected not a single millimeter of her body and lasted an hour before she pulled him on top of her and guided his cock to the wet gate of her pussy. Years later, when they were married, she confessed she suspected he was a virgin who didn’t know what to do next.
Helen was an eager lover who enjoyed just enough foreplay before getting down to business. She was loud too, a moaner and groaner, and sometimes to his dismay an ass-slapper. She preferred the missionary position because she could pinch handfuls of his behind and slap him with abandon as she crested her orgasm leaving his cheeks red and stinging. She was indifferent about receiving oral sex, but gave an enthusiastic blow job just to get him hard so he could finish her off with a forceful fucking.
She wanted sex when she wanted sex, and when she didn’t she might assent to letting him rub her back and behind until she fell asleep. And if he was tired? She had her ploys and wiles; talking dirty about flirting with another man, or spinning tales about being taken by a deliveryman or work colleague. Her stories bothered him, but they also aroused him. And as soon as she came, she fell asleep.
He decided Helen was a selfish lover, but he loved her all the more for her healthy lust.
As they approached their fifties she became less enthusiastic and, when he began to experience difficulties, when his ability to maintain an erection became iffy, she was all but indifferent. Still, it was her suggestion that he try the pills, but their effect was fleeting at best and not at all reliable.
He hated that he couldn’t satisfy her any longer, but what bothered him even more was her seeming indifference, as if she had had all the sex she had wanted for one life and really didn’t miss it all that much.
Brewster barely made it up the steps onto the front porch. He immediately found a shady spot and lay down. Tommy decided to leave him be. He reached down and scratched him behind one ear then stepped inside.
Helen, wearing a satiny wrap, sat with her legs drawn up on the couch in front of the television listening to some talking head drone on about yesterday’s stock market gyrations.
“Hi,” she said without bothering to look at him.
He said nothing but looked over her body. Time had been exceedingly kind to her. She was trim with nice round hips and pale smooth skin.
“Why don’t you sleep naked anymore?” he said.
“You used to sleep naked all the time.”
She shrugged. “I get cold … you want to go out for breakfast?”
“Sometimes I wake up and want to touch you, but you’re all wrapped up like a mummy.”
“Right, and then you wake me up and I need my sleep.”
“It would be nice, that’s all I’m saying.”
She twisted her lips. “Okay, I’ll go to bed naked tonight … okay?”
“No. I don’t want you to do it because I complained … it would just be nice if you did it … you know, without me bringing it up.”
Helen let her sigh escape in a long, slow frustrated hiss.
“What’s the matter?” she demanded. “I told you it’s okay; you can’t help …”
“It’s not okay. It’s important that … that …”
“Why don’t you try the pills again?”
“Sometimes I think … It’s not me, it’s you.”
“How is it me?”
“I dunno, you just don’t care anymore.”
“I care; but, we’re not kids any more. We have to expect things like this to happen; they happen to everyone.”
“I don’t think you ought to live so long that you can’t … can’t … make love to someone you love … That’s all.”
“C’mere, sit down.”
She put her arm around him and pulled him into a hug.
“Look, your fingers work, right? And you still have a tongue.”
His mouth fell open. “You don’t like it when I lick you. You never have.”
“It’s not that I don’t like it; it’s just a little too intense for me. It’s … I don’t know … like a torturously intense tickle. I don’t know whether I’m going to come or pee.” She shrugged, “But we could try it.”
“Yeah. And you’ve made me come with your fingers before. But, I don’t want to get all the benefits and leave you frustrated.”
He leaned away from her. “It isn’t right. Don’t you miss it?”
She shrugged. “But, honey, what are we supposed to do? That’s life. What, would you rather I find some young gigolo to fuck me … while you wait downstairs or go out for a walk or something?”
The notion made him cringe.
“Okay, then,” she said, “let’s just try to make do. What else can we do?”
“Yeah, sure. Okay.”
He stood up and walked out to the porch. Brewster lay snoring where he’d left him. He pulled up a chair and sat next to him, reaching down to pat his head.
“You’re a lazy old pooch, Brewster. Taking you to the dog park is just a waste of time, isn’t it?”
The dog yawned, licked his snout and closed his eyes.
Tommy’s thoughts turned to the girl. He wondered if her boyfriend licked her pussy.
“I bet she likes it,” he sighed.
© 2010 Robert Buckley. All rights reserved. Content may not be copied or used in whole or part without written permission from the author.